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Sample records for biophysics laboratory sbl

  1. Thermal Manikins & Clothing Biophysics Laboratories

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Five biophysical evaluation chambers containing fully sensored, articulated, moveable copper manikins, and other metallic models of feet and hands are available for...

  2. Biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Glaser, Roland

    1999-01-01

    The message of this book is that biophysics is the science of physical principles underlying the "phenomenon life" on all levels of organization. Rather than teaching "physics for biologists" or "physical methods applied to biology", it regards its subject as a defined discipline with its own network of ideas and approaches. The book starts by explaining molecular structures of biological systems, various kinds of atomic, molecular and ionic interactions, movements, energy transfer, self organization of supramolecular structures and dynamic properties of biological membranes. It then goes on to introduce the biological organism as a non-equilibrium system, before treating thermodynamic concepts of osmotic and electrolyte equilibria as well as currents and potential profiles. It continues with topics of environmental biophysics and such medical aspects as the influence of electromagnetic fields or radiation on living systems and the biophysics of hearing and noice protection. The book concludes with a discussi...

  3. Clinical biophysics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anbar, M.; Spangler, R.A.; Scott, P.

    1985-01-01

    Chapters are included on clinical decision making, principles of biomedical engineering, computers and their medical uses, clinical radiobiology, diagnostic x-ray radiology, clinical applications of ultrasonics, nuclear medicine, NMR imaging, diagnostic imaging, bioelectric techniques in diagnosis and therapy, biophysical aspects of the clinical laboratory, and biophysical aspects of modern surgery.

  4. Fluorescence quantum yield measurements of fluorescent proteins: a laboratory experiment for a biochemistry or molecular biophysics laboratory course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wall, Kathryn P; Dillon, Rebecca; Knowles, Michelle K

    2015-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins are commonly used in cell biology to assess where proteins are within a cell as a function of time and provide insight into intracellular protein function. However, the usefulness of a fluorescent protein depends directly on the quantum yield. The quantum yield relates the efficiency at which a fluorescent molecule converts absorbed photons into emitted photons and it is necessary to know for assessing what fluorescent protein is the most appropriate for a particular application. In this work, we have designed an upper-level, biochemistry laboratory experiment where students measure the fluorescence quantum yields of fluorescent proteins relative to a standard organic dye. Four fluorescent protein variants, enhanced cyan fluorescent protein (ECFP), enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP), mCitrine, and mCherry, were used, however the methods described are useful for the characterization of any fluorescent protein or could be expanded to fluorescent quantum yield measurements of organic dye molecules. The laboratory is designed as a guided inquiry project and takes two, 4 hr laboratory periods. During the first day students design the experiment by selecting the excitation wavelength, choosing the standard, and determining the concentration needed for the quantum yield experiment that takes place in the second laboratory period. Overall, this laboratory provides students with a guided inquiry learning experience and introduces concepts of fluorescence biophysics into a biochemistry laboratory curriculum.

  5. An Inexpensive Biophysics Laboratory Apparatus for Acquiring Pulmonary Function Data with Clinical Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harkay, Gregory

    2001-11-01

    Interest on the part of the Physics Department at KSC in developing a computer interfaced lab with appeal to biology majors and a need to perform a clinical pulmonological study to fulfill a biology requirement led to the author's undergraduate research project in which a recording spirometer (typical cost: $15K) was constructed from readily available materials and a typical undergraduate lab computer interface. Simple components, including a basic photogate circuit, CPU fan, and PVC couplings were used to construct an instrument for measuring flow rates as a function of time. Pasco software was used to build an experiment in which data was collected and integration performed such that one could obtain accurate values for FEV1 (forced expiratory volume for one second) and FVC (forced vital capacity) and their ratio for a large sample of subjects. Results were compared to published norms and subjects with impaired respiratory mechanisms identified. This laboratory exercise is one with which biology students can clearly identify and would be a robust addition to the repertoire for a HS or college physics or biology teaching laboratory.

  6. Biophysics demystified

    CERN Document Server

    Goldfarb, Daniel

    2011-01-01

    Written in a step-by-step format, this practical guide begins with an introduction to the science of biophysics, covering biophysical techniques and applications. Next, you'll learn the principles of physics, biology, and chemistry required to understand biophysics, including free energy, entropy, and statistical mechanics. Biomolecules and the forces that influence their structure and conformation are also covered, as are protein, nucleic acid, and membrane biophysics. Detailed examples and concise explanations make it easy to understand the material, and end-of-chapter quizzes and a final exam help reinforce key concepts.

  7. Modulation of gamma ray induced chromosome aberrations in human peripheral blood lymphocytes by Hippophae rhammnoides leaf extract, SBL-1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hippophae rhammnoides L. commonly known as seabuckthorn is a temperate shrub and native of Asia and Europe. It has high antioxidant potential and is known to the traditional Indian, Chinese and Tibetan medicinal system for treatment of multiple disorders viz., circulatory and digestive disorders, hepatic injuries, neoplasia etc. One time treatment with the standardized leaf extract from H. rhammnoides (SBL-1) before whole body irradiation with 60Co (10 Gy), rendered more than 90% survival in non SBL-1 treated irradiated animals (J herbs, spices medi plants, 2009). Present study investigated the effects of SBL-1 treatment on chromosomal damage in human peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBL), with or without 60Co-gamma-radiation. The lymphocytes were isolated from the blood drawn from different donors. The isolated lymphocytes were divided into several groups: Group 1-untreated control, Group 2-irradiated (2 Gy), Group 3, 4 and 5 were treated with different concentration of SBL-1, 30 min. after irradiation with 60Co-gamma-rays (2 Gy). Group 6 was treated with the maximum concentration of SBL-1 used in the study. The metaphase spreading technique was used as per standard procedure to record chromosome breaks, dicentrics, acentrics and rings. The results were also recorded in terms of total aberrant metaphase and frequency of aberrant metaphase per 100 cells. In comparison to the untreated control, in the irradiated PBL culture, there was 8-fold increase in breaks, 211-folds in dicentrics, 75-folds in acentrics and 3-folds in rings (average data). SBL-1 alone at the highest concentration did not cause any significant change in number of breaks, dicentrics, acentrics and rings. The radiation induced aberrations decreased significantly by treatment with SBL-1 and the maximum decrease was observed when the cells were treated with 22μg/ml of SBL-1. These results demonstrated the anti-clastogenic activity of SBL-1 against gamma radiation induced damage. (author)

  8. Activities in the SBL-FPL loops for LMFBR safety studies, (2)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    As the first step for the safety study of liquid metal-cooled fast breeder reactors, it is necessary to understand the initial events of potential accidents in LMFBRs. Local faults and sodium boiling are conceivable. The sodium boiling test loop (SBL) and the fuel failure propagation test loop (FPL) were constructed to investigate such phenomena experimentally. The two loops share one sodium dump tank and the purification system, and the whole facility is called ''Sodium installation for experiment of nuclear reactor safety analysis (SIENA)''. In almost all experiments, electrically heated fuel pin simulators were used in the form of pin bundles. The experimental studies using SBL-FPL have been carried out by the ''Core safety sodium behavior experiment group (CSSBEG)''. In addition, the group has operated two water test rigs for the experiments on large bubble behavior during hypothetical core disruptive accidents. A local event may successively cause the failure of adjacent fuel pins by the local worsening of cooling capability. The studies on fuel pin contact, FP gas release, local blockage and anomaly detection were carried out. The cooling of pin bundles by boiling in low heat flux and low flow rate conditions was tested. The behavior of bubbles in HCDA and the behavior of melted claddings were also investigated. (Kako, I.)

  9. Hippophae leaf extract (SBL-1) countered radiation induced dysbiosis in jejunum of total body 60Cobalt gamma - irradiated mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Single dose of SBL-1 administered at the rate 30 mg/kg body weight (b.w.) 30 min prior to whole body 60Co-gamma-irradiation at lethal dose (10 Gy), rendered >90% survival in comparison to zero survival in the non-SBL-1 treated 60Co-gamma-irradiated (10 Gy) mice population (J Herbs Spices Med Plants, 2009; 15(2): 203-215). Present study investigated the effect of SBL-1 on jejunal microbiota in lethally irradiated mice. Study was performed with inbred Swiss albino Strain 'A' male mice (age 9 weeks) weighing 28±2 g. The animals were maintained under controlled environment at 26±2℃; 12 h light/dark cycle and offered standard animal food (Golden feed, Delhi) as well as tap water ad libitum. Metagenomic DNA was extracted, purified and quantified from jejunum of the mice. Universal primers (27f and 1492r) were used to amplify the 16S rRNA DNA from the metagenomic DNA. Amplicons were sequenced, vector contamination and chimeras were removed. The sequences (GenBank Accession No: KF681283 to KF681351) were taxonomically classified by using Sequence Match program, Ribosomal Database Project as well as by nucleotide-BLAST (E-value: 10, database: 16S rRNA gene sequences, Bacteria and Archea). Phylogenetic Tree was prepared using MEGA 5.2 package, using maximum likelihood algorithm after sequence alignment by MUSCLE. Thermus aquaticus was used as out-group to construct rooted tree. Branch stability was assessed by bootstrap analysis. Untreated animals and the animals treated with SBL-1 had 100% Lactobacillus; 60Co gamma-irradiated animals had 55% Cohaesibacter (Alphaproteobacteria); 27% Mycoplasma (Tenericutes) and only 18% Lactobacillus; animals treated with SBL-1 prior to irradiation had 89% Lactobacillus and 11% Clostridium. This study demonstrated that treatment with SBL-1 at radioprotective doses before total body irradiation with lethal dose (10 Gy) countered the jejunal dysbiosis. (author)

  10. Mathematical biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Rubin, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    This book presents concise descriptions and analysis of the classical and modern models used in mathematical biophysics. The authors ask the question "what new information can be provided by the models that cannot be obtained directly from experimental data?" Actively developing fields such as regulatory mechanisms in cells and subcellular systems and electron transport and energy transport in membranes are addressed together with more classical topics such as metabolic processes, nerve conduction and heart activity, chemical kinetics, population dynamics, and photosynthesis. The main approach is to describe biological processes using different mathematical approaches necessary to reveal characteristic features and properties of simulated systems. With the emergence of powerful mathematics software packages such as MAPLE, Mathematica, Mathcad, and MatLab, these methodologies are now accessible to a wide audience. Provides succinct but authoritative coverage of a broad array of biophysical topics and models Wr...

  11. Children's Social Behaviour for Learning (SBL): Reported and Observed Social Behaviours in Contexts of School and Home

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Laurel; Spencer, Fiona

    2015-01-01

    The aim is to understand the diversity in children's social behaviours that are vital to learning. It is proposed that a model of Social Behaviours for Learning (SBL) relies on the positions of the observers in relevant contexts. In this case, children are observed at school and at home. The alternatives are sociability as a personal trait or…

  12. Adsorption of Disperse Blue SBL dye by synthesized poorly crystalline hydroxyapatite

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    BARKA Noureddine; QOURZAL Samir; ASSABBANE Ali; NOUNAH Abederrahman; A(I)T-ICHOU Yhya

    2008-01-01

    The present study has been undertaken to evaluate the adsorption in batch mode of a disperse dye (Disperse Blue SBL) by poorlycrystalline hydroxyapatite synthesized by coprecipitation between Ca(NO3)2 and (NH4)2HPO4 reagents in aqueous solution at roomtemperature. The adsorption experiments were carried out to investigate the factors that influence the dye uptake by the adsorbent, suchas the contact time under agitation, adsorbent dosage, initial dye concentration, solution temperature, and pH. The experimental resultsshow that the percentage of dye removal increases with increasing the amount of adsorbent, until the total discoloration. The adsorptionisotherms follow the model of Langmuir with a high adsorption capacity. The adsorption was pH and temperature dependent.

  13. Structural biophysics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Summaries of research projects conducted during 1978 and 1979 are presented. The structural biophysics group explores the high-resolution structure of biological macromolecules and cell organelles. Specific subject areas include: the basic characteristics of photosynthesis in plants; the chemical composition of individual fly ash particles at the site of their damaging action in tissues; direct analysis of frozen-hydrated biological samples by scanning electron microscopy; yeast genetics; the optical activity of DNA aggregates; measurement and characterization of lipoproteins; function of lipoproteins; and the effect of radiation and pollutants on mammalian cells

  14. Small Bioactive Lipoplex (SBL) Nanoparticles Self-Assembled at Elevated Temperature and Pressure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Leaf

    2009-03-01

    Conventional lipoplex (cationic liposome/DNA complex) serves well for gene transfer in cultured cells. However, their in vivo gene delivery activity is limited due to its relatively large size (>100 nm). This is due to incomplete charge neutralization as a result of the steric hindrance during the complexation between DNA and liposomes. Behr et al hypothesized that monomolecular DNA condensate can be prepared if the DNA sees the cationic lipid as monomers. Indeed, small nanoparticles (˜30 nm) were prepared by using a single-chain cationic amphiphile which has a high solubility at the physiological condition. To stabilize the monomolecular condensate, Behr has included a SH group in the cationic amphiphile which could be oxidized to form a dimer. Unfortunately, the stabilized nanoparticles showed no transfection activity when delivered into cells. We hypothesized that similar small lipoplex can be prepared by using a double-chain cationic amphiphile if both DNA and the amphiphile can be soluble in the same solvent. A hydrofluorocarbon HFC-152a is an excellent solvent for the cationic lipid DOTAP at an elevated temperature (˜35 ^oC) and pressure (˜300 atm). Since the solvent can accommodate small amounts of water, DNA or siRNA could be introduced into the system to allow lipoplex formation. The resulting Small Bioactive Lipoplex (SBL) is 30-50 nm in diameter and can transfect cultured cells. Freeze-fracture electron microscopy showed that SBL are solid nanoparticles without any lipid bilayer structure. Since plasmid DNA is fragile at elevated temperature and pressure, we have concentrated our effort in siRNA which is stable under the same conditions. The new formulation shows great promise as an in vivo delivery vector when small particles are required for efficient penetration into the tissues.

  15. Radiation biophysics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Summaries of research projects conducted during 1978 and 1979 are presented. The overall thrust of the research is aimed at understanding the effects of radiation on organisms. Specific subject areas include: the effects of heavy-particle beam nuclear interactions in tissue on dosimetry; tracer studies with radioactive fragments of heavy-ion beams; the effects of heavy/ions on human kidney cells and Chinese hamster cells; the response of a rhabdomyosarcoma tumor system in rats to heavy-ion beams; the use of heavy charged particles in radiotherapy of human cancer; heavy-ion radiography; the biological effects of high magnetic fields; central nervous system neurotoxicity; and biophysical studies on cell membranes

  16. Biophysical chemistry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Phosphorus-31 NMR spectroscopy is evolving into an important means for determining the in vivo concentrations of phosphorylated metabolites and is now entering the clinical arena. Our previous contributions to this field demonstrated the feasibility of employing implanted radio frequency coils around organs of laboratory animals to permit eliciting the NMR spectra over long periods to establish normative spectra. Using these devices and techniques we have determined phosphorus exchange reactions in rat hearts and kidney, in situ, and have demonstrated that there are pools of metabolic intermediates that are not directly visible in the conventional high resolution NMR spectra. Comparison of the results from NMR spectroscopy with those obtained from radiolabeling studies on chick embryo fibroblasts also showed that there are significant pools of phosphorus not visible in the P-31 NMR spectrum. Both sets of studies suggest that compartmentation occurs. The invisibility of these pools is assumed to result from the immobilization of the molecules by cellular macromolecules or organelles

  17. Utilization of monocrotophos as phosphorus source by Pseudomonas aeruginosa F10B and Clavibacter michiganense subsp. insidiosum SBL 11.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Subhas; Singh, Dileep Kumar

    2003-02-01

    Monocrotophos (dimethyl (E)-1-methyl-2-(methylcarbamoyl) vinyl phosphate, or MCP), an organophosphorus insecticide, was used as a sole phosphorus source by the microorganisms isolated from the soil. None of the isolates could utilize MCP as a sole source of carbon. Two of the potential microbial isolates, Pseudomonas aeruginosa F10B and Clavibacter michiganense subsp. insidiosum SBL 11, could utilize MCP as a sole source of phosphorus. Pseudomonas aeruginosa F10B showed a lag phase of 4 h, while in the case of C. michiganense subsp. insidiosum SBL 11, it was 8 h when cultured in the presence of MCP. The generation time for both strains was increased in the medium containing MCP. It was 2.15 h for P. aeruginosa F10B in MCP medium as compared with 1.29 h in basal medium, while in case of C. michiganense subsp. insidiosum SBL 11 it was increased to 3.4 h in MCP medium as compared with 1.28 h in basal medium. These two strains were able to degrade technical MCP in shake-flask culture up to 98.9 and 86.9%, respectively, and pure MCP up to 79 and 80%, respectively, within 24 h at 37 degrees C. The optimal concentration of MCP required for the normal growth was 500 ppm. In the substrate preference study, Tris-p-nitrophenyl phosphate was the most preferred substrate followed by paraoxon. The enzyme responsible for the break down of MCP was phosphotriesterase, which was localized on the membrane-bound fraction of the disrupted cells. The gene responsible for the production of phosphotriesterase (opd) in P. aeruginosa F10B was plasmid-borne.

  18. 2. biophysical work meeting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The report comprises 18 papers held at the 2nd Biophysical Work Meeting, 11 - 13 September 1991 in Schlema, Germany. The history of biophysics in Germany particularly of radiation biophysics and radon research, measurements of the radiation effects of radon and the derivation of limits, radon balneotherapy and consequences of uranium ore mining are dealt with. (orig.)

  19. Biophysics conference 1978

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The main subject on the biophysics meeting was the biophysics of membranes with practical subjects from photosynthesis and the transfer processes on membranes. In radiation biophysics, problems of radiation sensitisation, immunological problems after radiation exposure, the oxygen effect and inhibitory processes in RNS synthesis after radiation exposure were discussed with a view to tumour therapy. (AJ)

  20. Methods in Modern Biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Nölting, Bengt

    2010-01-01

    Incorporating recent dramatic advances, this textbook presents a fresh and timely introduction to modern biophysical methods. An array of new, faster and higher-power biophysical methods now enables scientists to examine the mysteries of life at a molecular level. This innovative text surveys and explains the ten key biophysical methods, including those related to biophysical nanotechnology, scanning probe microscopy, X-ray crystallography, ion mobility spectrometry, mass spectrometry, proteomics, and protein folding and structure. Incorporating much information previously unavailable in tutorial form, Nölting employs worked examples and about 270 illustrations to fully detail the techniques and their underlying mechanisms. Methods in Modern Biophysics is written for advanced undergraduate and graduate students, postdocs, researchers, lecturers, and professors in biophysics, biochemistry and related fields. Special features in the 3rd edition: Introduces rapid partial protein ladder sequencing - an important...

  1. Biophysics of olfaction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Souza, Fabio Marques Simoes de [Cell and Developmental Biology, University of Colorado at Denver and Health Science Center, Campus Box 6511, PO Box 6511, 12801 East 17th Avenue, Aurora, CO 80045 (United States); Antunes, Gabriela [Psychobiology Sector and Department of Chemistry, Faculdade de Filosofia Ciencias e Letras de Ribeirao Preto, Universidade de Sao Paulo, Av. Bandeirantes, 3900, 14040-901, Ribeirao Preto, SP (Brazil)

    2007-03-15

    The majority of the biophysical models of olfaction have been focused on the electrical properties of the system, which is justified by the relative facility of recording the electrical activity of the olfactory cells. However, depending on the level of detail utilized, a biophysical model can explore molecular, cellular and network phenomena. This review presents the state of the art of the biophysical approach to understanding olfaction. The reader is introduced to the principal problems involving the study of olfaction and guided gradually to comprehend why it is important to develop biophysical models to investigate olfaction. A large number of representative biophysical efforts in olfaction, their main contributions, the trends for the next generations of biophysical models and the improvements that may be explored by future biophysicists of olfaction have been reviewed.

  2. Methods in Modern Biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Nölting, Bengt

    2006-01-01

    Incorporating recent dramatic advances, this textbook presents a fresh and timely introduction to modern biophysical methods. An array of new, faster and higher-power biophysical methods now enables scientists to examine the mysteries of life at a molecular level. This innovative text surveys and explains the ten key biophysical methods, including those related to biophysical nanotechnology, scanning probe microscopy, X-ray crystallography, ion mobility spectrometry, mass spectrometry, proteomics, and protein folding and structure. Incorporating much information previously unavailable in tutorial form, Nölting employs worked examples and 267 illustrations to fully detail the techniques and their underlying mechanisms. Methods in Modern Biophysics is written for advanced undergraduate and graduate students, postdocs, researchers, lecturers and professors in biophysics, biochemistry and related fields. Special features in the 2nd edition: • Illustrates the high-resolution methods for ultrashort-living protei...

  3. New horizons in Biophysics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moylan Elizabeth C

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract This editorial celebrates the re-launch of PMC Biophysics previously published by PhysMath Central, in its new format as BMC Biophysics published by BioMed Central with an expanded scope and Editorial Board. BMC Biophysics will fill its own niche in the BMC series alongside complementary companion journals including BMC Bioinformatics, BMC Medical Physics, BMC Structural Biology and BMC Systems Biology.

  4. An Evaluation Quality Framework for Analysing School-Based Learning (SBL) to Work-Based Learning (WBL) Transition Module

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alseddiqi, M.; Mishra, R.; Pislaru, C.

    2012-05-01

    The paper presents the results from a quality framework to measure the effectiveness of a new engineering course entitled 'school-based learning (SBL) to work-based learning (WBL) transition module' in the Technical and Vocational Education (TVE) system in Bahrain. The framework is an extended version of existing information quality frameworks with respect to pedagogical and technological contexts. It incorporates specific pedagogical and technological dimensions as per the Bahrain modern industry requirements. Users' views questionnaire on the effectiveness of the new transition module was distributed to various stakeholders including TVE teachers and students. The aim was to receive critical information in diagnosing, monitoring and evaluating different views and perceptions about the effectiveness of the new module. The analysis categorised the quality dimensions by their relative importance. This was carried out using the principal component analysis available in SPSS. The analysis clearly identified the most important quality dimensions integrated in the new module for SBL-to-WBL transition. It was also apparent that the new module contains workplace proficiencies, prepares TVE students for work placement, provides effective teaching and learning methodologies, integrates innovative technology in the process of learning, meets modern industrial needs, and presents a cooperative learning environment for TVE students. From the principal component analysis finding, to calculate the percentage of relative importance of each factor and its quality dimensions, was significant. The percentage comparison would justify the most important factor as well as the most important quality dimensions. Also, the new, re-arranged quality dimensions from the finding with an extended number of factors tended to improve the extended version of the quality information framework to a revised quality framework.

  5. An Evaluation Quality Framework for Analysing School-Based Learning (SBL) to Work-Based Learning (WBL) Transition Module

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The paper presents the results from a quality framework to measure the effectiveness of a new engineering course entitled 'school-based learning (SBL) to work-based learning (WBL) transition module' in the Technical and Vocational Education (TVE) system in Bahrain. The framework is an extended version of existing information quality frameworks with respect to pedagogical and technological contexts. It incorporates specific pedagogical and technological dimensions as per the Bahrain modern industry requirements. Users' views questionnaire on the effectiveness of the new transition module was distributed to various stakeholders including TVE teachers and students. The aim was to receive critical information in diagnosing, monitoring and evaluating different views and perceptions about the effectiveness of the new module. The analysis categorised the quality dimensions by their relative importance. This was carried out using the principal component analysis available in SPSS. The analysis clearly identified the most important quality dimensions integrated in the new module for SBL-to-WBL transition. It was also apparent that the new module contains workplace proficiencies, prepares TVE students for work placement, provides effective teaching and learning methodologies, integrates innovative technology in the process of learning, meets modern industrial needs, and presents a cooperative learning environment for TVE students. From the principal component analysis finding, to calculate the percentage of relative importance of each factor and its quality dimensions, was significant. The percentage comparison would justify the most important factor as well as the most important quality dimensions. Also, the new, re-arranged quality dimensions from the finding with an extended number of factors tended to improve the extended version of the quality information framework to a revised quality framework.

  6. Biophysics An Introduction

    CERN Document Server

    Glaser, Roland

    2012-01-01

    Biophysics is the science of physical principles underlying all processes of life, including the dynamics and kinetics of biological systems. This fully revised 2nd English edition is an introductory text that spans all steps of biological organization, from the molecular, to the organism level, as well as influences of environmental factors. In response to the enormous progress recently made, especially in theoretical and molecular biophysics, the author has updated the text, integrating new results and developments concerning protein folding and dynamics, molecular aspects of membrane assembly and transport, noise-enhanced processes, and photo-biophysics. The advances made in theoretical biology in the last decade call for a fully new conception of the corresponding sections. Thus, the book provides the background needed for fundamental training in biophysics and, in addition, offers a great deal of advanced biophysical knowledge.

  7. Advanced Techniques in Biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Arrondo, José Luis R

    2006-01-01

    Technical advancements are basic elements in our life. In biophysical studies, new applications and improvements in well-established techniques are being implemented every day. This book deals with advancements produced not only from a technical point of view, but also from new approaches that are being taken in the study of biophysical samples, such as nanotechniques or single-cell measurements. This book constitutes a privileged observatory for reviewing novel applications of biophysical techniques that can help the reader enter an area where the technology is progressing quickly and where a comprehensive explanation is not always to be found.

  8. Encyclopedia of biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    2013-01-01

    The Encyclopedia of Biophysics is envisioned both as an easily accessible source of information and as an introductory guide to the scientific literature. It includes entries describing both Techniques and Systems.  In the Techniques entries, each of the wide range of methods which fall under the heading of Biophysics are explained in detail, together with the value and the limitations of the information each provides. Techniques covered range from diffraction (X-ray, electron and neutron) through a wide range of spectroscopic methods (X-ray, optical, EPR, NMR) to imaging (from electron microscopy to live cell imaging and MRI), as well as computational and simulation approaches. In the Systems entries, biophysical approaches to specific biological systems or problems – from protein and nucleic acid structure to membranes, ion channels and receptors – are described. These sections, which place emphasis on the integration of the different techniques, therefore provide an inroad into Biophysics from a biolo...

  9. The Biophysics of Infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leake, Mark C

    2016-01-01

    Our understanding of the processes involved in infection has grown enormously in the past decade due in part to emerging methods of biophysics. This new insight has been enabled through advances in interdisciplinary experimental technologies and theoretical methods at the cutting-edge interface of the life and physical sciences. For example, this has involved several state-of-the-art biophysical tools used in conjunction with molecular and cell biology approaches, which enable investigation of infection in living cells. There are also new, emerging interfacial science tools which enable significant improvements to the resolution of quantitative measurements both in space and time. These include single-molecule biophysics methods and super-resolution microscopy approaches. These new technological tools in particular have underpinned much new understanding of dynamic processes of infection at a molecular length scale. Also, there are many valuable advances made recently in theoretical approaches of biophysics which enable advances in predictive modelling to generate new understanding of infection. Here, I discuss these advances, and take stock on our knowledge of the biophysics of infection and discuss where future advances may lead.

  10. Biophysical Regulation of Vascular Differentiation and Assembly

    CERN Document Server

    Gerecht, Sharon

    2011-01-01

    The ability to grow stem cells in the laboratory and to guide their maturation to functional cells allows us to study the underlying mechanisms that govern vasculature differentiation and assembly in health and disease. Accumulating evidence suggests that early stages of vascular growth are exquisitely tuned by biophysical cues from the microenvironment, yet the scientific understanding of such cellular environments is still in its infancy. Comprehending these processes sufficiently to manipulate them would pave the way to controlling blood vessel growth in therapeutic applications. This book assembles the works and views of experts from various disciplines to provide a unique perspective on how different aspects of its microenvironment regulate the differentiation and assembly of the vasculature. In particular, it describes recent efforts to exploit modern engineering techniques to study and manipulate various biophysical cues. Biophysical Regulation of Vascular Differentiation and Assembly provides an inter...

  11. Biophysics of molecular gastronomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brenner, Michael P; Sörensen, Pia M

    2015-03-26

    Chefs and scientists exploring biophysical processes have given rise to molecular gastronomy. In this Commentary, we describe how a scientific understanding of recipes and techniques facilitates the development of new textures and expands the flavor palette. The new dishes that result engage our senses in unexpected ways. PAPERCLIP.

  12. Biophysics of molecular gastronomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brenner, Michael P; Sörensen, Pia M

    2015-03-26

    Chefs and scientists exploring biophysical processes have given rise to molecular gastronomy. In this Commentary, we describe how a scientific understanding of recipes and techniques facilitates the development of new textures and expands the flavor palette. The new dishes that result engage our senses in unexpected ways. PAPERCLIP. PMID:25815978

  13. Recent progress in Biophysics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recent progress in biophysics is reviewed, and three examples of the use of physical techniques and ideas in biological research are given. The first one deals with the oxygen transporting protein-hemoglobin, the second one with photosynthesis, and the third one with image formation, using nuclear magnetic resonance. (Author)

  14. Fetal Biophysical Profile Scoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H.R. HaghighatKhah

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available   "nFetal biophysical profile scoring is a sonographic-based method of fetal assessment first described by Manning and Platt in 1980. "nThe biophysical profile score was developed as a method to integrate real-time observations of the fetus and his/her intrauterine environment in order to more comprehensively assess the fetal condition. These findings must be evaluated in the context of maternal/fetal history (i.e., chronic hypertension, post-dates, intrauterine growth restriction, etc, fetal structural integrity (presence or absence of congenital anomalies, and the functionality of fetal support structures (placental and umbilical cord. For example, acute asphyxia due to placental abruption may result in an absence of the acute variables of the biophysical profile score (fetal breathing movements, fetal movement, fetal tone, and fetal heart rate reactivity with a normal amniotic fluid volume. With post maturity the asphyxial event may be intermittent and chronic resulting in a decrease in amniotic fluid volume, but with the acute variables remaining normal. "nWhile the 5 components of the biophysical profile score have remained unchanged since 1980 (Manning, 1980, the definitions of a normal and abnormal parameter have evolved with increasing experience. "nIn 1984 the definition of oligohydramnios was increased from < 1cm pocket of fluid to < 2.0 x 1.0 cm pocket. Oligohydramnios is now defined as a pocket of amniotic fluid < 2.0 x 2.0 cm (Manning, 1995a "nIf the four ultrasound variables are normal, the accuracy of the biophysical profile score was not found to be significantly improved by adding the non-stress test. As a result, in 1987 the profile score was modified to incorporate the non-stress test only when one of the ultrasound variables was abnormal (Manning 1987. Table 1 outlines the current definitions for quantifying a variable as present or absent. "nEach of the 5 components of the biophysical profile score does not have equal

  15. Theoretical Molecular Biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Scherer, Philipp

    2010-01-01

    "Theoretical Molecular Biophysics" is an advanced study book for students, shortly before or after completing undergraduate studies, in physics, chemistry or biology. It provides the tools for an understanding of elementary processes in biology, such as photosynthesis on a molecular level. A basic knowledge in mechanics, electrostatics, quantum theory and statistical physics is desirable. The reader will be exposed to basic concepts in modern biophysics such as entropic forces, phase separation, potentials of mean force, proton and electron transfer, heterogeneous reactions coherent and incoherent energy transfer as well as molecular motors. Basic concepts such as phase transitions of biopolymers, electrostatics, protonation equilibria, ion transport, radiationless transitions as well as energy- and electron transfer are discussed within the frame of simple models.

  16. Structure and biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Puglisi, Joseph D

    2007-01-01

    This volume is a collection of articles from the proceedings of the ISSBMR 7th Course: Structure and Biophysics - New Technologies for Current Challenges in Biology and Beyond. This NATO Advanced Institute (ASI) was held in Erice at the Ettore Majorana Foundation and Centre for Scientific Culture on 22 June through 3 July 2005. The ASI brought together a diverse group of experts in the fields of Structural Biology, Biophysics and Physics. Prominent lecturers, from seven different countries, and students from around the world participated in the NATO ASI organized by Professors Joseph Puglisi (Stanford University, USA) and Alexander Arseniev (Moscow, RU). Advances in nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR) and x-ray crystallography have allowed the three-dimensional structures of many biological macromolecules and their complexes, including the ribosome and RNA polymerase to be solved. Fundamental principles of NMR spectroscopy and dynamics, x-ray crystallography, computation and experimental dynamics we...

  17. Biophysics an introduction

    CERN Document Server

    Cotteril, Rodney

    2002-01-01

    Biophysics: An Introduction, is a concise balanced introduction to this subject. Written in an accessible and readable style, the book takes a fresh, modern approach with the author successfully combining key concepts and theory with relevant applications and examples drawn from the field as a whole. Beginning with a brief introduction to the origins of biophysics, the book takes the reader through successive levels of complexity, from atoms to molecules, structures, systems and ultimately to the behaviour of organisms. The book also includes extensive coverage of biopolymers, biomembranes, biological energy, and nervous systems. The text not only explores basic ideas, but also discusses recent developments, such as protein folding, DNA/RNA conformations, molecular motors, optical tweezers and the biological origins of consciousness and intelligence.

  18. Teaching wave phenomena via biophysical applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reich, Daniel; Robbins, Mark; Leheny, Robert; Wonnell, Steven

    2014-03-01

    Over the past several years we have developed a two-semester second-year physics course sequence for students in the biosciences, tailored in part to the needs of undergraduate biophysics majors. One semester, ``Biological Physics,'' is based on the book of that name by P. Nelson. This talk will focus largely on the other semester, ``Wave Phenomena with Biophysical Applications,'' where we provide a novel introduction to the physics of waves, primarily through the study of experimental probes used in the biosciences that depend on the interaction of electromagnetic radiation with matter. Topic covered include: Fourier analysis, sound and hearing, diffraction - culminating in an analysis of x-ray fiber diffraction and its use in the determination of the structure of DNA - geometrical and physical optics, the physics of modern light microscopy, NMR and MRI. Laboratory exercises tailored to this course will also be described.

  19. Biophysics of DNA

    CERN Document Server

    Vologodskii, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    Surveying the last sixty years of research, this book describes the physical properties of DNA in the context of its biological functioning. It is designed to enable both students and researchers of molecular biology, biochemistry and physics to better understand the biophysics of DNA, addressing key questions and facilitating further research. The chapters integrate theoretical and experimental approaches, emphasising throughout the importance of a quantitative knowledge of physical properties in building and analysing models of DNA functioning. For example, the book shows how the relationship between DNA mechanical properties and the sequence specificity of DNA-protein binding can be analyzed quantitatively by using our current knowledge of the physical and structural properties of DNA. Theoretical models and experimental methods in the field are critically considered to enable the reader to engage effectively with the current scientific literature on the physical properties of DNA.

  20. Biophysics and cancer

    CERN Document Server

    Nicolini, Claudio

    1986-01-01

    Since the early times of the Greek philosophers Leucippus and Democritus, and later of the Roman philosopher Lucretius, a simple, fundamental idea emerged that brought the life sciences into the realm of the physical sciences. Atoms, after various interactions, were assumed to acquire stable configurations that corresponded either to the living or to the inanimate world. This simple and unitary theory, which has evolved in successive steps to our present time, remarkably maintained its validity despite several centuries of alternative vicissitudes, and is the foundation of modern biophysics. Some of the recent developments of this ancient idea are the discovery of the direct relationship between spatial structures and chemical activity of such molecules as methane and benzene, and the later discovery of the three-dimensional structure of double-helical DNA, and of its relationship with biological activity. The relationship between the structure of various macromolecules and the function of living cells was on...

  1. Post test calculation of the experiment `small break loss-of- coolant test` SBL-22 at the Finnish integral test facility PACTEL with the thermohydraulic code ATHLET

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lischke, W.; Vandreier, B. [Univ. for Applied Sciences, Zittau/Goerlitz (Germany). Dept. of Nuclear Technology

    1997-12-31

    At the University for Applied Sciences Zittau/Goerlitz (FH) calculations for the verification of the ATHLET-code for reactors of type VVER are carried out since 1991, sponsored by the German Ministry for Education, Science and Technology (BMBF). The special features of these reactors in comparison to reactors of western countries are characterized by the duct route of reactor coolant pipes and the horizontal steam generators. Because of these special features, a check of validity of the ATHLET-models is necessary. For further verification of the ATHLET-code the post test calculation of the experiment SBL-22 (Small break loss-of-coolant test) realized at the finnish facility PACTEL was carried out. The experiment served for the examination of the natural circulation behaviour of the loop over a continuous range of primary side water inventory. 5 refs.

  2. Biophysics of protein evolution and evolutionary protein biophysics

    OpenAIRE

    Sikosek, Tobias; Chan, Hue Sun

    2014-01-01

    The study of molecular evolution at the level of protein-coding genes often entails comparing large datasets of sequences to infer their evolutionary relationships. Despite the importance of a protein's structure and conformational dynamics to its function and thus its fitness, common phylogenetic methods embody minimal biophysical knowledge of proteins. To underscore the biophysical constraints on natural selection, we survey effects of protein mutations, highlighting the physical basis for ...

  3. [Biophysics of nerve excitation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kol'e, O R; Maksimov, G V

    2010-01-01

    The studies testifying to the presence of the interrelation between the physiological functions of the organism and physical and chemical processes in nerves are discussed. Changes in some physical and chemical parameters observed both upon elicited rhythmic exaltation of nerves and during the spontaneous rhythmic activity of neurons are analyzed. Upon rhythmic exaltation, a complex of physical and chemical processes is triggered, and reversible structural and metabolic rearrangements at the subcellular and molecular levels occur that do not take place during the generation of a single action potential. Thus, only in conditions of rhythmic exaltation of a nerve, it is possible to reveal those processes that provide exaltation of nerves in the organism. The future possibilities of the investigations combining the biophysical and physiological approaches are substantiated. Characteristic changes in physicochemical parameters are observed in nerves during the generation of a series of action potentials of different frequency and duration ("frequency dependence") under normal physiological conditions, as well as in extreme situations and in nerve pathology. The structural and metabolic rearrangements are directly related to the mode of rhythmic exaltation and proceed both in the course of rhythmic exaltation and after its termination. Participation and the basic components of the nervous fulcrum (an axon, Shwan cell, myelin, subcellular organelles) in the realization of rhythmic exaltation is shown. In the coordination of all processes involved in rhythmic exaltation, the main role is played by the systems of redistribution and transport of intercellular and endocellular calcium. The idea is put forward that myelin of nerve fibers is not only an isolator, but also an "intercellular depot" of calcium and participates in the redistribution of different ions. Thus, the rhythmic excitation is of great importance in the realization of some physiological functions, the

  4. Integrated Molecular and Cellular Biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Raicu, Valerica

    2008-01-01

    This book integrates concepts and methods from physics, biology, biochemistry and physical chemistry into a standalone, unitary text of biophysics that aims to provide a quantitative description of structures and processes occurring in living matter. The book introduces graduate physics students and physicists interested in biophysics research to 'classical' as well as emerging areas of biophysics. The advanced undergraduate physics students and the life scientists are also invited to join in, by building on their knowledge of basic physics. Essential notions of biochemistry and biology are introduced, as necessary, throughout the book, while the reader's familiarity with basic knowledge of physics is assumed. Topics covered include interactions between biological molecules, physical chemistry of phospholipids association into bilayer membranes, DNA and protein structure and folding, passive and active electrical properties of the cell membrane, classical as well as fractal aspects of reaction kinetics and di...

  5. Biophysics in drug discovery: impact, challenges and opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renaud, Jean-Paul; Chung, Chun-Wa; Danielson, U Helena; Egner, Ursula; Hennig, Michael; Hubbard, Roderick E; Nar, Herbert

    2016-10-01

    Over the past 25 years, biophysical technologies such as X-ray crystallography, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, surface plasmon resonance spectroscopy and isothermal titration calorimetry have become key components of drug discovery platforms in many pharmaceutical companies and academic laboratories. There have been great improvements in the speed, sensitivity and range of possible measurements, providing high-resolution mechanistic, kinetic, thermodynamic and structural information on compound-target interactions. This Review provides a framework to understand this evolution by describing the key biophysical methods, the information they can provide and the ways in which they can be applied at different stages of the drug discovery process. We also discuss the challenges for current technologies and future opportunities to use biophysical methods to solve drug discovery problems.

  6. Radiation dosimetry and radiation biophysics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radiation dosimetry and radiation biophysics are two closely integrated programs whose joint purpose is to explore the connections between the primary physical events produced by radiation and their biological consequences in cellular systems. The radiation dosimetry program includes the theoretical description of primary events and their connection with the observable biological effects. This program also is concerned with the design and measurement of physical parameters used in theory or to support biological experiments. The radiation biophysics program tests and uses the theoretical developments for experimental design, and provides information for further theoretical development through experiments on cellular systems

  7. Radiation dosimetry and radiation biophysics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radiation dosimetry and radiation biophysics are two closely integrated programs whose joint purpose is to explore the connections between the primary physical events produced by radiation and their biological consequences in cellular systems. The radiation dosimetry program includes the theoretical description of primary events and their connection with the observable biological effects. This program also is concerned with design and measurement of those physical parameters used in the theory or to support biological experiments. The radiation biophysics program tests and makes use of the theoretical developments for experimental design. Also, this program provides information for further theoretical development through experiments on cellular systems

  8. The biophysics of neuronal growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franze, Kristian; Guck, Jochen

    2010-09-01

    For a long time, neuroscience has focused on biochemical, molecular biological and electrophysiological aspects of neuronal physiology and pathology. However, there is a growing body of evidence indicating the importance of physical stimuli for neuronal growth and development. In this review we briefly summarize the historical background of neurobiophysics and give an overview over the current understanding of neuronal growth from a physics perspective. We show how biophysics has so far contributed to a better understanding of neuronal growth and discuss current inconsistencies. Finally, we speculate how biophysics may contribute to the successful treatment of lesions to the central nervous system, which have been considered incurable until very recently.

  9. Fundamental Concepts in Biophysics Volume 1

    CERN Document Server

    Jue, Thomas

    2009-01-01

    HANDBOOK OF MODERN BIOPHYSICS Series Editor Thomas Jue, PhD Handbook of Modern Biophysics brings current biophysics topics into focus, so that biology, medical, engineering, mathematics, and physical-science students or researchers can learn fundamental concepts and the application of new techniques in addressing biomedical challenges. Chapters explicate the conceptual framework of the physics formalism and illustrate the biomedical applications. With the addition of problem sets, guides to further study, and references, the interested reader can continue to explore independently the ideas presented. Volume I: Fundamental Concepts in Biophysics Editor Thomas Jue, PhD In Fundamental Concepts in Biophysics, prominent professors have established a foundation for the study of biophysics related to the following topics: Mathematical Methods in Biophysics Quantum Mechanics Basic to Biophysical Methods Computational Modeling of Receptor–Ligand Binding and Cellular Signaling Processes Fluorescence Spectroscopy Elec...

  10. Surface-Enhanced Raman Scattering and Biophysics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kneipp, Katrin

    2001-03-01

    Surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) is a phenomenon resulting in strongly increased Raman signals from molecules which have been attached to metallic nanostructures such as colloidal silver or gold particles. The effect combines the structural information content of a vibrational spectroscopy with extremely high sensitivity and in some cases, it showes promise in overcoming the low-sensitivity problems inherent in Raman spectroscopy. Cross sections effective in SERS can reach 10 16 to 10 15 cm2 per molecule corresponding to enhancement factors of about fourteen orders of magnitude compared with “normal” non-resonant Raman scattering. Such extremely large cross sections are sufficient for single molecule Raman spectroscopy. The high sensitivity and particularly the single molecule capabilities open up exciting perspectives for SERS as tool for basic research in biophysics, biochemistry and in laboratory medicine, where it allows to study extremely small amounts of biolomedically relevant molecules in order to understand development of diseases, treatment and therapy control based on molecular structural information at the single molecule level. The most spectacular applications might appear in rapidly spectroscopic characterization of specific DNA fragments down to structurally sensitive detection of single bases in order to elucidate the human genome sequence without any labeling technology. I will briefly introduce the SERS effect and report experiments with Raman scattering of single molecules. Potential and limitations of surface-enhanced Raman techniques as a tool in biophysics and biomedical spectroscopy will be considered.

  11. Biophysical science in Italy: SIBPA turns 40.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giacomazza, Daniela; Musio, Carlo

    2013-12-01

    This Special Issue of Biophysical Chemistry includes a selection of the papers presented at the XXI Congress of the Italian Society of Pure and Applied Biophysics (i.e., SIBPA, Società Italiana di Biofisica Pura ed Applicata) held on September 2012 at the University of Ferrara, Ferrara, Italy. Topics cover all biophysical disciplines, from molecular to cellular, to integrative biophysics giving an almost comprehensive view of the interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches, proper of the modern biophysics. SIBPA, which celebrates its 40th anniversary in 2013, has steadily grown and appeals to both specialists and a wider general audience.

  12. The New School-Based Learning (SBL) to Work-Based Learning (WBL) Transition Module: A Practical Implementation in the Technical and Vocational Education (TVE) System in Bahrain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alseddiqi, M.; Mishra, R.; Pislaru, C.

    2012-05-01

    This paper diagnoses the implementation of a new engineering course entitled 'school-based learning (SBL) to work-based learning (WBL) transition module' in the Bahrain Technical and Vocational Education (TVE) learning environment. The module was designed to incorporate an innovative education and training approach with a variety of learning activities that are included in various learning case studies. Each case study was based on with learning objectives coupled with desired learning outcomes. The TVE students should meet the desired outcomes after the completion of the learning activities and assessments. To help with the implementation phase of the new module, the authors developed guidelines for each case study. The guidelines incorporated learning activities to be delivered in an integrated learning environment. The skills to be transferred were related to cognitive, affective, and technical proficiencies. The guidelines included structured instructions to help students during the learning process. In addition, technology was introduced to improve learning effectiveness and flexibility. The guidelines include learning indicators for each learning activity and were based on their interrelation with competencies to be achieved with respect to modern industrial requirements. Each learning indicator was then correlated against the type of learning environment, teaching and learning styles, examples of mode of delivery, and assessment strategy. Also, the learning activities were supported by technological features such as discussion forums for social perception and engagement and immediate feedback exercises for self-motivation. Through the developed module, TVE teachers can effectively manage the teaching and learning process as well as the assessment strategy to satisfy students' individual requirements and enable them to meet workplace requirements.

  13. Leukocyte biophysics. An invited review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmid-Schönbein, G W

    1990-10-01

    The biophysical properties of leukocytes in the passive and active state are discussed. In the passive unstressed state, leukocytes are spherical with numerous membrane folds. Passive leukocytes exhibit viscoelastic properties, and the stress is carried largely by the cell cytoplasm and the nucleus. The membrane is highly deformable in shearing and bending, but resists area expansion. Membrane tension can usually be neglected but plays a role in cases of large deformation when the membrane becomes unfolded. The constant membrane area constraint is a determinant of phagocytic capacity, spreading of cells, and passage through narrow pores. In the active state, leukocytes undergo large internal cytoplasmic deformation, pseudopod projection, and granule redistribution. Several different measurements for assessment of biophysical properties and the internal cytoplasmic deformation in form of strain and strain rate tensors are presented. The current theoretical models for active cytoplasmic motion in leukocytes are discussed in terms of specific macromolecular reactions. PMID:1705479

  14. From hadron therapy to cosmic rays: a life in biophysics

    CERN Multimedia

    Christine Sutton

    2014-01-01

    In 1954 – the year CERN was founded – another scientific journey began at what is now the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Beams of protons from a particle accelerator were used for the first time by John Lawrence – a doctor and the brother of Ernest Lawrence, the physicist after whom the Berkeley lab is named – to treat patients with cancer. For many years, Eleanor Blakely has been one of the leaders of that journey. She visited CERN last week and spoke with the Bulletin about her life in biophysics.   Use of the cylcotron beam to mimic "shooting stars" seen by astronauts. Black hood on subject Cornelius Tobias keeps out light during neutron irradiation experiment at the 184-inch accelerator. Helping to position Tobias in the beam line are (left to right) John Lyman of Biomedical Division, and Ralph Thomas of Health Physics. (Photo courtesy of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.) Interested in biophysics, which was still a new...

  15. Space Biophysics: Accomplishments, Trends, Challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Jeffrey D.

    2015-01-01

    Physics and biology are inextricably linked. All the chemical and biological processes of life are dutifully bound to follow the rules and laws of physics. In space, these physical laws seem to turn on their head and biological systems, from microbes to humans, adapt and evolve in myriad ways to cope with the changed physical influences of the space environment. Gravity is the most prominent change in space that influences biology. In microgravity, the physical processes of sedimentation, density-driven convective flow, influence of surface tension and fluid pressure profoundly influence biology at the molecular and cellular level as well as at the whole-body level. Gravity sensing mechanisms are altered, structural and functional components of biology (such as bone and muscle) are reduced and changes in the way fluids and gasses behave also drive the way microbial systems and biofilms grow as well as the way plants and animals adapt. The radiation environment also effects life in space. Solar particle events and high energy cosmic radiation can cause serious damage to DNA and other biomolecules. The results can cause mutation, cellular damage or death, leading to health consequences of acute radiation damage or long-term health consequences such as increased cancer risk. Space Biophysics is the study and utilization of physical changes in space that cause changes in biological systems. The unique physical environment in space has been used successfully to grow high-quality protein crystals and 3D tissue cultures that could not be grown in the presence of unidirectional gravitational acceleration here on Earth. All biological processes that change in space have their root in a biophysical alteration due to microgravity and/or the radiation environment of space. In order to fully-understand the risks to human health in space and to fully-understand how humans, plants, animals and microbes can safely and effectively travel and eventually live for long periods beyond

  16. 纤维素纳米纤维-丁苯胶乳复合材料的制备与表征%Preparation and characterization of cellulose-nanoifbers/styrene-butadiene latex (NFs/SBL) composites

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    宋冰; 石勇; 陆海龙; 马金霞; 周小凡

    2016-01-01

    采用共混法制备不同纤维素纳米纤维含量的纤维素纳米纤维-丁苯胶乳复合材料,并通过拉伸性能、扫描电镜、热重分析以及红外光谱检测该复合材料的相关性能。分析结果表明:纤维素纳米纤维能均匀分散在丁苯胶乳溶液中,对丁苯胶乳有较好的补强效果;和丁苯胶乳相比,制得复合材料的裂断伸长率增大,弹性变好;但纤维素纳米纤维的加入对丁苯胶乳热稳定性的影响不明显。%Cellulose-nanofibers/styrene-butadiene latex(NFs-SBL) composites were prepared by blending different amount of cellulose nanofibers with styrene-butadiene latex(SBL), through the tensile properties testing, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), thermo-gravimetric analysis and infrared spectrometric analysis(FT-IR). The result showed that NFs are dispersed uniformly in styrene-butadiene latex and showed a good reinforcing effect on SBL, composite material breaking elongation increased and elastic becoming good. However, the addition of NFs had a less impact on thermal stability of styrene-butadiene latex.

  17. Quantum Nanobiology and Biophysical Chemistry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2013-01-01

    An introduction was provided in the first issue by way of an Editorial to this special two issue volume of Current Physical Chemistry – “Quantum Nanobiology and Biophysical Chemistry” [1]. The Guest Editors would like to thank all the authors and referees who have contributed to this second issue...... and Jalkanen et al. provide a theoretical and experimental investigation of the infrared and Raman spectra of Leu- Enkephalin in dimethylsulfoxide will be published in the August 2013 issue, Volume 3, Issue 3. In place of these two contributions, two General Articles from Esalmi et al., and Liu et al...

  18. Molecular Biophysics Symposium, November 6, 2014

    OpenAIRE

    Capelluto, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Virginia Tech hosted the first Molecular Biophysics Symposium focusing on structural biology studies of proteins. The event pursued two goals. First, it was designed to enrich the interaction among biophysical research groups located in southwest Virginia. Second, the symposium offered undergraduate students, interested in continuing their graduate studies in biophysics, the opportunity to meet with local and invited biophysicists and structural biologists. Four speakers were selected from su...

  19. The Mechanics and Biophysics of Hearing

    CERN Document Server

    Geisler, C; Matthews, John; Ruggero, Mario; Steele, Charles

    1990-01-01

    Proceedings of a workshop on the physics and biophysics of hearing that brought together experimenters and modelers working on all aspects of audition. Topics covered include: cochlear mechanical measurements, cochlear models, mechanicals and biophysics of hair cells, efferent control, and ultrastructure.

  20. Historical and Critical Review on Biophysical Economics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adigüzel, Yekbun

    2016-07-01

    Biophysical economics is initiated with the long history of the relation of economics with ecological basis and biophysical perspectives of the physiocrats. It inherently has social, economic, biological, environmental, natural, physical, and scientific grounds. Biological entities in economy like the resources, consumers, populations, and parts of production systems, etc. could all be dealt by biophysical economics. Considering this wide scope, current work is a “biophysical economics at a glance” rather than a comprehensive review of the full range of topics that may just be adequately covered in a book-length work. However, the sense of its wide range of applications is aimed to be provided to the reader in this work. Here, modern approaches and biophysical growth theory are presented after the long history and an overview of the concepts in biophysical economics. Examples of the recent studies are provided at the end with discussions. This review is also related to the work by Cleveland, “Biophysical Economics: From Physiocracy to Ecological Economics and Industrial Ecology” [C. J. Cleveland, in Advances in Bioeconomics and Sustainability: Essay in Honor of Nicholas Gerogescu-Roegen, eds. J. Gowdy and K. Mayumi (Edward Elgar Publishing, Cheltenham, England, 1999), pp. 125-154.]. Relevant parts include critics and comments on the presented concepts in a parallelized fashion with the Cleveland’s work.

  1. An introduction to environmental biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Campbell, Gaylon S

    1977-01-01

    The study of environmental biophysics probably began earlier in man's history than that of any other science. The study of organism-environment interaction provided a key to survival and progress. Systematic study of the science and recording of experimental results goes back many hundreds of years. Ben­ jamin Franklin, the early American statesman, inventor, printer, and scientist studied conduction, evaporation, and radiation. One of his observations is as follows: My desk on which I now write, and the lock of my desk, are both exposed to the same temperature of the air, and have therefore the same degree of heat or cold; yet if I lay my hand successively on the wood and on the metal, the latter feels much the coldest, not that it is really so, but being a better conductor, it more readily than the wood takes away and draws into itself the fire that was in my skin. 1 Franklin probably was not the first to discover this principle, and certainly was not the last. Modem researchers rediscover this principle f...

  2. Applications of synchrotron radiation in Biophysics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A short introduction to the generation of the synchrotron radiation is made. Following, the applications of such a radiation in biophysics with emphasis to the study of the hemoglobin molecule are presented. (L.C.)

  3. Biophysics software for interdisciplinary education and research

    OpenAIRE

    Deutsch, J. M.

    2013-01-01

    Biophysics is a subject that is spread over many disciplines and transcends the skills and knowledge of the individual student. This makes it challenging both to teach and to learn. Educational materials are described to aid in teaching undergraduates biophysics in an interdisciplinary manner. Projects have been devised on topics that range from x-ray diffraction to the Hodgkin Huxley equations. They are team-based and encourage collaboration. The projects make extensive use of software writt...

  4. The USA-National Phenology Network Biophysical Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Losleben, M. V.; Crimmins, T. M.; Weltzin, J. F.

    2009-12-01

    On January 1, 2009, the USA National Phenology Network (USA-NPN, www.usanpn.org) launched the USA-NPN Biophysical Program. The overarching goal of the Biophysical Program (BP) is to link phenology, the study of recurring plant and animal life cycle stages, with climate through the integration of phenology observations, meteorological, and spectral remote sensing measurements at sites across a broad a spectrum of environments. Phenology is critical for understanding a changing world. Many of the recurring plant and animal life cycle stages such as leafing and flowering of plants, maturation of agricultural crops, emergence of insects, and migration of birds are sensitive to climatic variation and change, and are simple to observe and record. Such changes can effect, for example, timing mismatches between the emergence of food sources and the arrival of migrating populations, or create new disease and invasive species vectors via increasingly suitable growing seasons relative to the climatic life cycle requirements of hosts or the organisms themselves. New vectors or crashing populations can have major repercussions on entire ecosystems and regional economics. Thus, to track phenology and build a national database, the USA-NPN is providing standard phenology monitoring protocols. Further, the integration of weather stations with phenological data provides an opportunity to understand how a changing climate is altering phenology. Thus, the USA-NPN Biophysical Program is developing an integrative biology-climate site template for widespread dissemination, in collaboration with the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory (RMBL, http://rmbl.org/rockymountainbiolab/). This poster presents the USA-NPN Biophysical Program, and the results of the collaboration with RMBL during the summer of 2009, including the installation of an elevational network of climate stations. The National Science Foundation’s Major Research Instrumentation (NSF’s MRI) program provides funding

  5. 6th international conference on biophysics and synchrotron radiation. Program/Abstracts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pittroff, Connie; Strasser, Susan Barr [lead editors

    1999-08-03

    This STI product consists of the Program/Abstracts book that was prepared for the participants in the Sixth International Conference on Biophysics and Synchrotron Radiation that was held August 4-8, 1998, at the Advanced Photon Source, Argonne National Laboratory. This book contains the full conference program and abstracts of the scientific presentations.

  6. 6th international conference on biophysics and synchrotron radiation. Program/Abstracts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This STI product consists of the Program/Abstracts book that was prepared for the participants in the Sixth International Conference on Biophysics and Synchrotron Radiation that was held August 4-8, 1998, at the Advanced Photon Source, Argonne National Laboratory. This book contains the full conference program and abstracts of the scientific presentations

  7. Biophysical regulation of stem cell differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Govey, Peter M; Loiselle, Alayna E; Donahue, Henry J

    2013-06-01

    Bone adaptation to its mechanical environment, from embryonic through adult life, is thought to be the product of increased osteoblastic differentiation from mesenchymal stem cells. In parallel with tissue-scale loading, these heterogeneous populations of multipotent stem cells are subject to a variety of biophysical cues within their native microenvironments. Bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells-the most broadly studied source of osteoblastic progenitors-undergo osteoblastic differentiation in vitro in response to biophysical signals, including hydrostatic pressure, fluid flow and accompanying shear stress, substrate strain and stiffness, substrate topography, and electromagnetic fields. Furthermore, stem cells may be subject to indirect regulation by mechano-sensing osteocytes positioned to more readily detect these same loading-induced signals within the bone matrix. Such paracrine and juxtacrine regulation of differentiation by osteocytes occurs in vitro. Further studies are needed to confirm both direct and indirect mechanisms of biophysical regulation within the in vivo stem cell niche.

  8. Stochastic biophysical modeling of irradiated cells

    CERN Document Server

    Fornalski, Krzysztof Wojciech

    2014-01-01

    The paper presents a computational stochastic model of virtual cells irradiation, based on Quasi-Markov Chain Monte Carlo method and using biophysical input. The model is based on a stochastic tree of probabilities for each cell of the entire colony. Biophysics of the cells is described by probabilities and probability distributions provided as the input. The adaptation of nucleation and catastrophe theories, well known in physics, yields sigmoidal relationships for carcinogenic risk as a function of the irradiation. Adaptive response and bystander effect, incorporated into the model, improves its application. The results show that behavior of virtual cells can be successfully modeled, e.g. cancer transformation, creation of mutations, radioadaptation or radiotherapy. The used methodology makes the model universal and practical for simulations of general processes. Potential biophysical curves and relationships are also widely discussed in the paper. However, the presented theoretical model does not describe ...

  9. Incorporating Modeling and Simulations in Undergraduate Biophysical Chemistry Course to Promote Understanding of Structure-Dynamics-Function Relationships in Proteins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hati, Sanchita; Bhattacharyya, Sudeep

    2016-01-01

    A project-based biophysical chemistry laboratory course, which is offered to the biochemistry and molecular biology majors in their senior year, is described. In this course, the classroom study of the structure-function of biomolecules is integrated with the discovery-guided laboratory study of these molecules using computer modeling and…

  10. Global energy modeling - A biophysical approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dale, Michael

    2010-09-15

    This paper contrasts the standard economic approach to energy modelling with energy models using a biophysical approach. Neither of these approaches includes changing energy-returns-on-investment (EROI) due to declining resource quality or the capital intensive nature of renewable energy sources. Both of these factors will become increasingly important in the future. An extension to the biophysical approach is outlined which encompasses a dynamic EROI function that explicitly incorporates technological learning. The model is used to explore several scenarios of long-term future energy supply especially concerning the global transition to renewable energy sources in the quest for a sustainable energy system.

  11. The numerical modelling studies performed at the Gazi Biophysics Laboratory

    OpenAIRE

    TUYSUZ, Mehmet; CANSEVEN, Ayse; SEYHAN, Nesrin

    2013-01-01

    In recent years humans are more exposed to human-made electromagnetic (EM) fields than natural fields with developing technologies. Especially, widespread use of wireless communication technologies in all areas of daily life and getting closer to sensitive organs like brain caused an increase in possible risks and worries about human health. For this reason, the potential health effects from the use of mobile phones has been studied intensively in scientific field. Specific Absorption Rate (S...

  12. Biophysical Evaluation of SonoSteam®:

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Ann Zahle; Duelund, Lars; Brewer, Jonathan R.;

    /response relationship between SonoSteam treatment time and changes in collagen I, and a depth dependency in bacterial reduction, which points toward CFU counts overestimating total bacterial reduction. In conclusion the biophysical methods provide a less biased, reproducible and highly detailed system description...

  13. Biophysical Measurements of Cells, Microtubules, and DNA with an Atomic Force Microscope

    CERN Document Server

    Devenica, Luka M; Cabrejo, Raysa; Kurek, Matthew; Deveney, Edward F; Carter, Ashley R

    2015-01-01

    Atomic force microscopes (AFMs) are ubiquitous in research laboratories and have recently been priced for use in teaching laboratories. Here we review several AFM platforms (Dimension 3000 by Digital Instruments, EasyScan2 by Nanosurf, ezAFM by Nanomagnetics, and TKAFM by Thorlabs) and describe various biophysical experiments that could be done in the teaching laboratory using these instruments. In particular, we focus on experiments that image biological materials and quantify biophysical parameters: 1) imaging cells to determine membrane tension, 2) imaging microtubules to determine their persistence length, 3) imaging the random walk of DNA molecules to determine their contour length, and 4) imaging stretched DNA molecules to measure the tensional force.

  14. Commentary on “Biophysical Economics” and Evolving Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flomenbom, Ophir; Coban, Gul Unal; Adigüzel, Yekbun

    2016-07-01

    In this Issue, papers in the area of socio-econo-physics and biophysical economics are presented. We have recently introduced socio-econo-physics and biophysical economics in Biophysical Reviews and Letters (BRL), yet saw 3 to 4 relevant papers just in these most recent three quarters. In this commentary, we therefore would like to elaborate on the topics of socio-econo-physics and biophysical economics and to introduce these concepts to the readers of BRL and the biophysical community of science, with the purpose of supporting many more publications here in BRL, in this evolving area.

  15. Biophysics of α-synuclein membrane interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfefferkorn, Candace M; Jiang, Zhiping; Lee, Jennifer C

    2012-02-01

    Membrane proteins participate in nearly all cellular processes; however, because of experimental limitations, their characterization lags far behind that of soluble proteins. Peripheral membrane proteins are particularly challenging to study because of their inherent propensity to adopt multiple and/or transient conformations in solution and upon membrane association. In this review, we summarize useful biophysical techniques for the study of peripheral membrane proteins and their application in the characterization of the membrane interactions of the natively unfolded and Parkinson's disease (PD) related protein, α-synuclein (α-syn). We give particular focus to studies that have led to the current understanding of membrane-bound α-syn structure and the elucidation of specific membrane properties that affect α-syn-membrane binding. Finally, we discuss biophysical evidence supporting a key role for membranes and α-syn in PD pathogenesis. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Membrane protein structure and function.

  16. Biophysics and the Challenges of Emerging Threats

    CERN Document Server

    Puglisi, Joseph D

    2009-01-01

    This volume is a collection of articles from the proceedings of the International School of Structural Biology and Magnetic Resonance 8th Course: Biophysics and the Challenges of Emerging Threats. This NATO Advance Study Institute (ASI) was held in Erice at the Ettore Majorana Foundation and Centre for Scientific Culture on 19 through 30 June 2007. The ASI brought together a diverse group of experts who bridged the fields of virology and biology, biophysics, chemistry and physics. Prominent lecturers and students from around the world representant a total of 24 countries participated in the NATO ASI organized by Professors Joseph Puglisi (Stanford University, USA) and Alexander Arseniev (Moscow, RU). The central hypothesis underlying this ASI was that interdisciplinary research, merging principles of physics, chemistry and biology, can drive new discovery in detecting and fighting bioterrorism agents, lead to cleaner environments, and help propel development in NATO partner countries. The ASI merged the relat...

  17. Recent microwave research studies of Gazi Biophysics & Gazi Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection Center

    OpenAIRE

    SEYHAN, Nesrin

    2013-01-01

    Gazi Biophysics is located in Ankara at the Medical Faculty of Gazi University and has been carrying out in vivo and in vitro research studies on the biological impacts of Static, Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) and Microwave (MW) electromagnetic fields (EMF) since 1989. Our laboratory includes: Physicists, biologists, electrical engineers, all of whom are studying how living systems respond to EMF. Our research team includes physicists, biologists, electrical engineers, physicians, biochemists...

  18. Biophysics at the Boundaries: The Next Problem Sets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skolnick, Malcolm

    2009-03-01

    The interface between physics and biology is one of the fastest growing subfields of physics. As knowledge of such topics as cellular processes and complex ecological systems advances, researchers have found that progress in understanding these and other systems requires application of more quantitative approaches. Today, there is a growing demand for quantitative and computational skills in biological research and the commercialization of that research. The fragmented teaching of science in our universities still leaves biology outside the quantitative and mathematical culture that is the foundation of physics. This is particularly inopportune at a time when the needs for quantitative thinking about biological systems are exploding. More physicists should be encouraged to become active in research and development in the growing application fields of biophysics including molecular genetics, biomedical imaging, tissue generation and regeneration, drug development, prosthetics, neural and brain function, kinetics of nonequilibrium open biological systems, metabolic networks, biological transport processes, large-scale biochemical networks and stochastic processes in biochemical systems to name a few. In addition to moving into basic research in these areas, there is increasing opportunity for physicists in industry beginning with entrepreneurial roles in taking research results out of the laboratory and in the industries who perfect and market the inventions and developments that physicists produce. In this talk we will identify and discuss emerging opportunities for physicists in biophysical and biotechnological pursuits ranging from basic research through development of applications and commercialization of results. This will include discussion of the roles of physicists in non-traditional areas apart from academia such as patent law, financial analysis and regulatory science and the problem sets assigned in education and training that will enable future

  19. Unusual biophysics of intrinsically disordered proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uversky, Vladimir N

    2013-05-01

    Research of a past decade and a half leaves no doubt that complete understanding of protein functionality requires close consideration of the fact that many functional proteins do not have well-folded structures. These intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) and proteins with intrinsically disordered protein regions (IDPRs) are highly abundant in nature and play a number of crucial roles in a living cell. Their functions, which are typically associated with a wide range of intermolecular interactions where IDPs possess remarkable binding promiscuity, complement functional repertoire of ordered proteins. All this requires a close attention to the peculiarities of biophysics of these proteins. In this review, some key biophysical features of IDPs are covered. In addition to the peculiar sequence characteristics of IDPs these biophysical features include sequential, structural, and spatiotemporal heterogeneity of IDPs; their rough and relatively flat energy landscapes; their ability to undergo both induced folding and induced unfolding; the ability to interact specifically with structurally unrelated partners; the ability to gain different structures at binding to different partners; and the ability to keep essential amount of disorder even in the bound form. IDPs are also characterized by the "turned-out" response to the changes in their environment, where they gain some structure under conditions resulting in denaturation or even unfolding of ordered proteins. It is proposed that the heterogeneous spatiotemporal structure of IDPs/IDPRs can be described as a set of foldons, inducible foldons, semi-foldons, non-foldons, and unfoldons. They may lose their function when folded, and activation of some IDPs is associated with the awaking of the dormant disorder. It is possible that IDPs represent the "edge of chaos" systems which operate in a region between order and complete randomness or chaos, where the complexity is maximal. This article is part of a Special Issue

  20. Main: 2SBL [RPSD[Archive

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available NAFLGRSVSLQLISATKADAHGKGKVGKDTFLEGINTSLPTLGAGESAFNIHFEWDGSMGIPGAFYIKNYMQVEFFLKSLTLEAISNQGTIRFVCNSWVYNTKLYKSV...PHVVQVSQSAWMTDEEFAREMIAGVNPCVIRGLEEFPPKSNLDPAIYGDQSSKITADSLDLDGYTMDEALGSRRLFMLDYHDIFMPYVRQINQLNSAKTYATRTILFLREDGTLKPVAI...LINANGIIETTFLPSKYSVEMSSAVYKNWVFTDQALPADLIKRGVAIKDPSTPHGVRLLIEDYPYAADGLEIWAAIKTWVQ

  1. Understanding Statistical Mechanics and Biophysics Using Excel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Peter

    2009-03-01

    A new approach to teaching statistical mechanics and biophysics is presented using the classic two-box system from statistical mechanics as an example. This approach makes advanced physics concepts accessible to a broad audience including undergraduates with no calculus background. Students develop a simple Excel spreadsheet that implements a kinetic Monte Carlo (kMC) simulation algorithm ``from scratch''. The students discover for themselves the properties of the system by analyzing the simulation output in a directed, activity-based exercise. By changing the number and initial distribution of the particles, students see how the system approaches equilibrium and how system variability changes with system size. A finite difference solution is also implemented in Excel, and students compare its predictions with the kMC results. This approach is quite different from using ``canned'' computer demonstrations, as students design, implement and debug the simulation themselves -- ensuring that they understand the model system intimately.

  2. Application of biophysical technologies in dental research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higham, Susan M.; Pender, Neil; de Josselin de Jong, Elbert; Smith, Philip W.

    2009-05-01

    There is a wealth of evidence to indicate that if dental caries can be recognized at an early stage, it is possible to halt its progression or even reverse it. This has led to an increased interest in the development of diagnostic techniques capable of visualizing caries at an early stage in addition to providing clinicians with an aid to diagnosis. Several techniques are available for research and clinical applications for detecting early demineralization. This manuscript has reviewed some of the techniques currently available to determine their advantages, whether they have any limitations and their applicability to dental research and clinical dentistry. Not one method is the perfect choice in all situations, but what is clear is that the development and application of biophysical technologies have allowed major advances to be made in dental research as well as in clinical dentistry. With continued developments these technologies will play an important role in the future management of dental disease.

  3. [Biophysical Characterization of Biopharmaceuticals, Including Antibody Drugs].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uchiyama, Susumu

    2016-01-01

    Biopharmaceuticals, including antibody drugs, are now popular because of their high specificity with low adverse effects, especially in the treatment of cancer and autoimmune diseases. However, because the active pharmaceutical ingredients of biopharmaceuticals are proteins, biophysical characterization of these therapeutic proteins should be required. In this manuscript, methods of chemical and physical characterization of therapeutic proteins are described. In terms of chemical characterization, analysis of chemical modifications of the constituent amino acids is explained. Physical characterization includes higher order structural analysis and assessment of protein aggregates. Quantification methods of aggregates with different sizes, recently encouraged by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), are introduced. As for the stability of therapeutic proteins, the importance of chemical and physical stability is explained. Finally, the contribution of colloidal and structural stability to the production of an antibody drug less prone to aggregation is introduced.

  4. Biophysics of NASA radiation quality factors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    NASA has implemented new radiation quality factors (QFs) for projecting cancer risks from space radiation exposures to astronauts. The NASA QFs are based on particle track structure concepts with parameters derived from available radiobiology data, and NASA introduces distinct QFs for solid cancer and leukaemia risk estimates. The NASA model was reviewed by the US National Research Council and approved for use by NASA for risk assessment for International Space Station missions and trade studies of future exploration missions to Mars and other destinations. A key feature of the NASA QFs is to represent the uncertainty in the QF assessments and evaluate the importance of the QF uncertainty to overall uncertainties in cancer risk projections. In this article, the biophysical basis for the probability distribution functions representing QF uncertainties was reviewed, and approaches needed to reduce uncertainties were discussed. (author)

  5. Biophysical model of prokaryotic diversity in geothermal hot springs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klales, Anna; Duncan, James; Nett, Elizabeth Janus; Kane, Suzanne Amador

    2012-02-01

    Recent studies of photosynthetic bacteria living in geothermal hot spring environments have revealed surprisingly complex ecosystems with an unexpected level of genetic diversity. One case of particular interest involves the distribution along hot spring thermal gradients of genetically distinct bacterial strains that differ in their preferred temperatures for reproduction and photosynthesis. In such systems, a single variable, temperature, defines the relevant environmental variation. In spite of this, each region along the thermal gradient exhibits multiple strains of photosynthetic bacteria adapted to several distinct thermal optima, rather than a single thermal strain adapted to the local environmental temperature. Here we analyze microbiology data from several ecological studies to show that the thermal distribution data exhibit several universal features independent of location and specific bacterial strain. These include the distribution of optimal temperatures of different thermal strains and the functional dependence of the net population density on temperature. We present a simple population dynamics model of these systems that is highly constrained by biophysical data and by physical features of the environment. This model can explain in detail the observed thermal population distributions, as well as certain features of population dynamics observed in laboratory studies of the same organisms.

  6. Time-resolved methods in biophysics. 9. Laser temperature-jump methods for investigating biomolecular dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubelka, Jan

    2009-04-01

    Many important biochemical processes occur on the time-scales of nanoseconds and microseconds. The introduction of the laser temperature-jump (T-jump) to biophysics more than a decade ago opened these previously inaccessible time regimes up to direct experimental observation. Since then, laser T-jump methodology has evolved into one of the most versatile and generally applicable methods for studying fast biomolecular kinetics. This perspective is a review of the principles and applications of the laser T-jump technique in biophysics. A brief overview of the T-jump relaxation kinetics and the historical development of laser T-jump methodology is presented. The physical principles and practical experimental considerations that are important for the design of the laser T-jump experiments are summarized. These include the Raman conversion for generating heating pulses, considerations of size, duration and uniformity of the temperature jump, as well as potential adverse effects due to photo-acoustic waves, cavitation and thermal lensing, and their elimination. The laser T-jump apparatus developed at the NIH Laboratory of Chemical Physics is described in detail along with a brief survey of other laser T-jump designs in use today. Finally, applications of the laser T-jump in biophysics are reviewed, with an emphasis on the broad range of problems where the laser T-jump methodology has provided important new results and insights into the dynamics of the biomolecular processes.

  7. Rhizosphere biophysics and root water uptake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carminati, Andrea; Zarebanadkouki, Mohsen; Ahmed, Mutez A.; Passioura, John

    2016-04-01

    The flow of water into the roots and the (putative) presence of a large resistance at the root-soil interface have attracted the attention of plant and soil scientists for decades. Such resistance has been attributed to a partial contact between roots and soil, large gradients in soil matric potential around the roots, or accumulation of solutes at the root surface creating a negative osmotic potential. Our hypothesis is that roots are capable of altering the biophysical properties of the soil around the roots, the rhizosphere, facilitating root water uptake in dry soils. In particular, we expect that root hairs and mucilage optimally connect the roots to the soil maintaining the hydraulic continuity across the rhizosphere. Using a pressure chamber apparatus we measured the relation between transpiration rate and the water potential difference between soil and leaf xylem during drying cycles in barley mutants with and without root hairs. The samples were grown in well structured soils. At low soil moistures and high transpiration rates, large drops in water potential developed around the roots. These drops in water potential recovered very slowly, even after transpiration was severely decreased. The drops in water potential were much bigger in barley mutants without root hairs. These mutants failed to sustain high transpiration rates in dry conditions. To explain the nature of such drops in water potential across the rhizosphere we performed high resolution neutron tomography of the rhizosphere of the barleys with and without root hairs growing in the same soil described above. The tomograms suggested that the hydraulic contact between the soil structures was the highest resistance for the water flow in dry conditions. The tomograms also indicate that root hairs and mucilage improved the hydraulic contact between roots and soil structures. At high transpiration rates and low water contents, roots extracted water from the rhizosphere, while the bulk soil, due its

  8. Contribution to researches in biophysics and biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In this accreditation to supervise research, the author indicates its curriculum and scientific works which mainly dealt with the different agents used in chemotherapy. Scientific works addressed anti-carcinogenic pharmacology, applied biophysics, and researches in oncology and radiobiology. Current research projects deal with mechanisms of cellular transformation and the implication of the anti-oxidising metabolism and of nucleotide metabolism in cell radio-sensitivity. Teaching and research supervising activities are also indicated. Several articles are proposed in appendix: Average quality factor and dose equivalent meter based on microdosimetry techniques; Activity of thymidylate synthetase, thymidine kinase and galactokinase in primary and xenografted human colorectal cancers in relation to their chromosomal patterns; Nucleotide metabolism in human gliomas, relation to the chromosomal profile; Pyrimidine nucleotide metabolism in human colon carcinomas: comparison of normal tissues, primary tumors and xenografts; Modifications of the antioxidant metabolism during proliferation and differentiation of colon tumours cell lines; Modulation of the antioxidant enzymes, p21 and p53 expression during proliferation and differentiation of human melanoma cell lines; Purine metabolism in 2 human melanoma cell lines, relation with proliferation and differentiation; Radiation-induced changes in nucleotide metabolism of 2 colon cancer cell lines with different radio-sensitivities

  9. Review of FEWS NET Biophysical Monitoring Requirements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, K. W.; Brown, Molly E.; Verdin, J.; Underwood, L. W.

    2009-01-01

    The Famine Early Warning System Network (FEWS NET) provides monitoring and early warning support to decision makers responsible for responding to famine and food insecurity. FEWS NET transforms satellite remote sensing data into rainfall and vegetation information that can be used by these decision makers. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration has recently funded activities to enhance remote sensing inputs to FEWS NET. To elicit Earth observation requirements, a professional review questionnaire was disseminated to FEWS NET expert end-users: it focused upon operational requirements to determine additional useful remote sensing data and; subsequently, beneficial FEWS NET biophysical supplementary inputs. The review was completed by over 40 experts from around the world, enabling a robust set of professional perspectives to be gathered and analyzed rapidly. Reviewers were asked to evaluate the relative importance of environmental variables and spatio-temporal requirements for Earth science data products, in particular for rainfall and vegetation products. The results showed that spatio-temporal resolution requirements are complex and need to vary according to place, time, and hazard: that high resolution remote sensing products continue to be in demand, and that rainfall and vegetation products were valued as data that provide actionable food security information.

  10. Biophysical and biomathematical adventures in radiobiology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights of my biophysical and biomathematical adventures in radiobiology is presented. Early adventures involved developing ''state-vector models'' for specific harmful effects (cell killing, life shortening) of exposure to radiation. More recent adventures led to developing ''hazard-function models'' for predicting biological effects (e.g., cell killing, mutations, tumor induction) of combined exposure to different toxicants. Hazard-function models were also developed for predicting harm to man from exposure to large radiation doses. Major conclusions derived from the modeling adventures are as follows: (1) synergistic effects of different genotoxic agents should not occur at low doses; (2) for exposure of the lung or bone marrow to large doses of photon radiation, low rates of exposure should be better tolerated than high rates; and (3) for some types of radiation (e.g., alpha particles and fission neutrons), moderate doses delivered at a low rate may be more harmful than the same dose given at a high rate. 53 refs., 7 figs

  11. Biophysically realistic minimal model of dopamine neuron

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oprisan, Sorinel

    2008-03-01

    We proposed and studied a new biophysically relevant computational model of dopaminergic neurons. Midbrain dopamine neurons are involved in motivation and the control of movement, and have been implicated in various pathologies such as Parkinson's disease, schizophrenia, and drug abuse. The model we developed is a single-compartment Hodgkin-Huxley (HH)-type parallel conductance membrane model. The model captures the essential mechanisms underlying the slow oscillatory potentials and plateau potential oscillations. The main currents involved are: 1) a voltage-dependent fast calcium current, 2) a small conductance potassium current that is modulated by the cytosolic concentration of calcium, and 3) a slow voltage-activated potassium current. We developed multidimensional bifurcation diagrams and extracted the effective domains of sustained oscillations. The model includes a calcium balance due to the fundamental importance of calcium influx as proved by simultaneous electrophysiological and calcium imaging procedure. Although there are significant evidences to suggest a partially electrogenic calcium pump, all previous models considered only elecrtogenic pumps. We investigated the effect of the electrogenic calcium pump on the bifurcation diagram of the model and compared our findings against the experimental results.

  12. Brain Mapping Center Opens at Institute of Biophysics

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2004-01-01

    @@ Agroup of world-class scie, ntists in brain imaging came to China's capital to .witness the inauguration of the Beijing MRI Center for Brain Research, which was officially opened on May 25 at the CAS Institute of Biophysics.

  13. Developing spatial biophysical accounting for multiple ecosystem services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Remme, R.P.; Schroter, M.; Hein, L.G.

    2014-01-01

    Ecosystem accounting is receiving increasing interest as a way to systematically monitor the conditions of ecosystems and the ecosystem services they provide. A critical element of ecosystem accounting is understanding spatially explicit flows of ecosystem services. We developed spatial biophysical

  14. Signatures of protein biophysics in coding sequence evolution

    OpenAIRE

    Wilke, Claus O; Drummond, D Allan

    2010-01-01

    Since the early days of molecular evolution, the conventional wisdom has been that the evolution of protein-coding genes is primarily determined by functional constraints. Yet recent evidence indicates that the evolution of these genes is strongly shaped by the biophysical processes of protein synthesis, protein folding, and specific as well as non-specific protein–protein interactions. Selection pressures related to these biophysical processes affect primarily the amino-acid sequence of gene...

  15. Biophysics of Human Hair Structural, Nanomechanical, and Nanotribological Studies

    CERN Document Server

    Bhushan, Bharat

    2010-01-01

    This book presents the biophysics of hair. It deals with the structure of hair, its mechanical properties, the nanomechanical characterization, tensile deformation, tribological characterization, the thickness distribution and binding interactions on hair surface. Another important topic of the book is the health of hair, human hair and skin, hair care, cleaning and conditioning treatments and damaging processes. It is the first book on the biophysical properties of hair.

  16. Characterising the biophysical properties of normal and hyperkeratotic foot skin

    OpenAIRE

    Hashmi, Farina; Nester, Christopher; Wright, Ciaran; Newton, Veronica; Lam, Sharon

    2015-01-01

    Background Plantar foot skin exhibits unique biophysical properties that are distinct from skin on other areas of the body. This paper characterises, using non-invasive methods, the biophysical properties of foot skin in healthy and pathological states including xerosis, heel fissures, calluses and corns. Methods Ninety three people participated. Skin hydration, elasticity, collagen and elastin fibre organisation and surface texture was measured from plantar calluses, corns, fissured heel ski...

  17. The relationship between fetal biophysical profile and cord blood PH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valadan M

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available "nBackground: The Biophysical Profile (BPP is a noninvasive test that predicts the presence or absence of fetal asphyxia and, ultimately, the risk of fetal death in the antenatal period. Intervention on the basis of an abnormal biophysical profile result has been reported to yield a significant reduction in prenatal mortality, and an association exists between biophysical profile scoring and a decreased cerebral palsy rate in a given population. The BPP evaluates five characteristics: fetal movement, tone, breathing, heart reactivity, and amniotic fluid (AF volume estimation. The purpose of study was to determine whether there are different degree of acidosis at which the biophysical activity (acute marker are affected. "nMethods: In a prospective study of 140 patients undergoing cesarean section before onset of labor, the fetal biophysical profile was performed 24h before the time of cesarean and was matched with cord arterial PH that was obtained from a cord segment (10-20cm that was double clamped after delivery of newborn. (using cord arterial PH less than 7.20 for the diagnosis of acidosis. "nResults: The fetal biophysical profile was found to have a significant relationship with umbilical blood PH. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value of fetal biophysical profile score were: 88.9%, 88.6%, 50%, 98.1%. "nConclusion: The first manifestations of fetal acidosis are nonreactive nonstress testing and fetal breathing loss; in advanced acidemia fetal movements and fetal tone are compromised. A protocol of antepartum fetal evaluation is suggested based upon the individual biophysical components rather than the score alone.

  18. Modelling Biophysical Parameters of Maize Using Landsat 8 Time Series

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahms, Thorsten; Seissiger, Sylvia; Conrad, Christopher; Borg, Erik

    2016-06-01

    Open and free access to multi-frequent high-resolution data (e.g. Sentinel - 2) will fortify agricultural applications based on satellite data. The temporal and spatial resolution of these remote sensing datasets directly affects the applicability of remote sensing methods, for instance a robust retrieving of biophysical parameters over the entire growing season with very high geometric resolution. In this study we use machine learning methods to predict biophysical parameters, namely the fraction of absorbed photosynthetic radiation (FPAR), the leaf area index (LAI) and the chlorophyll content, from high resolution remote sensing. 30 Landsat 8 OLI scenes were available in our study region in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Germany. In-situ data were weekly to bi-weekly collected on 18 maize plots throughout the summer season 2015. The study aims at an optimized prediction of biophysical parameters and the identification of the best explaining spectral bands and vegetation indices. For this purpose, we used the entire in-situ dataset from 24.03.2015 to 15.10.2015. Random forest and conditional inference forests were used because of their explicit strong exploratory and predictive character. Variable importance measures allowed for analysing the relation between the biophysical parameters with respect to the spectral response, and the performance of the two approaches over the plant stock evolvement. Classical random forest regression outreached the performance of conditional inference forests, in particular when modelling the biophysical parameters over the entire growing period. For example, modelling biophysical parameters of maize for the entire vegetation period using random forests yielded: FPAR: R² = 0.85; RMSE = 0.11; LAI: R² = 0.64; RMSE = 0.9 and chlorophyll content (SPAD): R² = 0.80; RMSE=4.9. Our results demonstrate the great potential in using machine-learning methods for the interpretation of long-term multi-frequent remote sensing datasets to model

  19. A PROSPECTIVE TRIAL OF THE FETAL BIOPHYSICAL PROFILE VERSUS MODIFIED BIOPHYSICAL PROFILE IN THE MANAGEMENT OF HIGH RISK PREGNANCIES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Jamal

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available "nThe original biophysical profile is time consuming and costly. This study was performed to compare diagnostic value of the original fetal biophysical profile to the modified biophysical profile. Patients were selected from high risk pregnancies referred for fetal assessment and were randomly assigned to two groups. The measures of outcomes were perinatal mortality, Cesarean section for abnormal test, meconium-stained amniotic fluid and 5-minute Apgar score < 7. Diagnostic values of tests were assessed in terms of the incidence of abnormal outcome. In addition comparisons between the positive and negative predictive values of each of these tests as well as the sensitivity and specificity of the tests were reviewed. A total of 200 patients were entered into the study; 104 pregnancies were managed by the original biophysical profile and 96 pregnancies by the modified biophysical profile. There were 30 abnormal (31.3% in modified biophysical profile and 24 (23.1% abnormal tests in original one. There was significant difference in the incidence of meconium passage between two groups. Cesarean section for abnormal tests was 27 of 30 abnormal test (90% in modified and 22 of 24 (91.6% in original profile that was similar in both groups. There was not significant difference in Apgar score < 7 between two groups. We did not find significant difference with comparison of the sensitivity, specificity and negative predictive value of two tests for all measures of outcome except the positive predictive value of meconium passage. Original biophysical profile is more costly and time consuming than modified one.

  20. Estimation of rice biophysical parameters using multitemporal RADARSAT-2 images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, S.; Ni, P.; Cui, G.; He, P.; Liu, H.; Li, L.; Liang, Z.

    2016-04-01

    Compared with optical sensors, synthetic aperture radar (SAR) has the capability of acquiring images in all-weather conditions. Thus, SAR images are suitable for using in rice growth regions that are characterized by frequent cloud cover and rain. The objective of this paper was to evaluate the probability of rice biophysical parameters estimation using multitemporal RADARSAT-2 images, and to develop the estimation models. Three RADARSTA-2 images were acquired during the rice critical growth stages in 2014 near Meishan, Sichuan province, Southwest China. Leaf area index (LAI), the fraction of photosynthetically active radiation (FPAR), height, biomass and canopy water content (WC) were observed at 30 experimental plots over 5 periods. The relationship between RADARSAT-2 backscattering coefficients (σ 0) or their ratios and rice biophysical parameters were analysed. These biophysical parameters were significantly and consistently correlated with the VV and VH σ 0 ratio (σ 0 VV/ σ 0 VH) throughout all growth stages. The regression model were developed between biophysical parameters and σ 0 VV/ σ 0 VH. The results suggest that the RADARSAT-2 data has great potential capability for the rice biophysical parameters estimation and the timely rice growth monitoring.

  1. The physical basis of biochemistry the foundations of molecular biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Bergethon, Peter R

    1998-01-01

    The objective of this book is to provide a unifying approach to the study of biophysical chemistry for the advanced undergraduate who has had a year of physics, organic chem­ istry, calculus, and biology. This book began as a revised edition of Biophysical Chemistry: Molecules to Membranes, which Elizabeth Simons and I coauthored. That short volume was written in an attempt to provide a concise text for a one-semester course in biophysical chemistry at the graduate level. The experience of teaching biophysical chemistry to bi­ ologically oriented students over the last decade has made it clear that the subject requires a more fundamental text that unifies the many threads of modem science: physics, chem­ istry, biology, mathematics, and statistics. This book represents that effort. This volume is not a treatment of modem biophysical chemistry with its rich history and many contro­ versies, although a book on that topic is also needed. The Physical Basis of Biochemistry is an introduction to the philosophy...

  2. Lidar remote sensing of savanna biophysical attributes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gwenzi, David

    plot level biomass into wall-to-wall maps that provide more ecological information. We evaluated the utility of three spatial modeling approaches to address this problem: deterministic methods, geostatistical methods and an image segmentation approach. Overall, the mean pixel biomass estimated by the 3 approaches did not differ significantly but the output maps showed marked differences in the estimation precision and ability of each model to mimic the primary variable's trend across the landscape. The results emphasized the need for future satellite lidar missions to consider increasing the sampling intensity across track so that biomass observations are made and characterized at the scale at which they vary. We used data from the Multiple Altimeter Beam Experimental Lidar (MABEL), an airborne photon counting lidar sensor developed by NASA Goddard to simulate ICESat-2 data. We segmented each transect into different block sizes and calculated canopy top and mean ground elevation based on the structure of the histogram of the block's aggregated photons. Our algorithm was able to compute canopy height and generate visually meaningful vegetation profiles at MABEL's signal and noise levels but a simulation of the expected performance of ICESat-2 by adjusting MABEL data's detected number of signal and noise photons to that predicted using ATLAS instrument model design cases indicated that signal photons will be substantially lower. The lower data resolution reduces canopy height estimation precision especially in areas of low density vegetation cover. Given the clear difficulties in processing simulated ATLAS data, it appears unlikely that it will provide the kind of data required for mapping of the biophysical properties of savanna vegetation. Rather, resources are better concentrated on preparing for the Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) mission, a waveform lidar mission scheduled to launch by the end of this decade. In addition to the full waveform technique

  3. Large-scale biophysical evaluation of protein PEGylation effects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vernet, Erik; Popa, Gina; Pozdnyakova, Irina;

    2016-01-01

    of PEGylation on the thermal stability of a protein based on data generated by circular dichroism (CD), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), or differential scanning fluorimetry (DSF). In addition, DSF was validated as a fast and inexpensive screening method for thermal unfolding studies of PEGylated...... proteins. Multivariate data analysis revealed clear trends in biophysical properties upon PEGylation for a subset of proteins, although no universal trends were found. Taken together, these findings are important in the consideration of biophysical methods and evaluation of second......-generation biopharmaceutical drug candidates....

  4. The Twilight of Determinism: At Least in Biophysical Novelties

    CERN Document Server

    Gilead, Amihud

    2015-01-01

    In the 1990s, Richard Lewontin referred to what appeared to be the twilight of determinism in biology. He pointed out that DNA determines only a little part of life phenomena, which are very complex. In fact, organisms determine the environment and vice versa in a nonlinear way. Very recently, biophysicists, Shimon Marom and Erez Braun, have demonstrated that controlled biophysical systems have shown a relative autonomy and flexibility in response which could not be predicted. Within the boundaries of some restraints, most of them genetic, this freedom from determinism is well maintained. Marom and Braun have challenged not only biophysical determinism but also reverse-engineering, naive reductionism, mechanism, and systems biology.

  5. Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics. Research Report 1996-1997

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Scientific interests of the Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics of the Polish Academy of Sciences have evolved from classical biochemistry, biophysics and physiological chemistry to up-to-date molecular biology. Research interests are focussed on replication, mutagenesis and repair of DNA; regulation of gene expression at various levels; biosynthesis and post-translational modifications of proteins; gene sequencing and functional analysis of open reading frames; structure, function and regulation of enzymes; conformation of proteins and peptides; modelling of structures and prediction of functions of proteins; mechanisms of electron transfer in polypeptides

  6. Biophysical characterization of a model antibody drug conjugate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arakawa, Tsutomu; Kurosawa, Yasunori; Storms, Michael; Maruyama, Toshiaki; Okumura, C J; Maluf, Nasib Karl

    2016-01-01

    Antibody drug conjugates (ADC) are important next-generation biopharmaceuticals and thus require stringent structure characterization as is the case for monoclonal antibodies. We have tested several biophysical techniques, i.e., circular dichroism, analytical ultracentrifugation, differential scanning calorimetry and fluorescence spectroscopy, to characterize a fluorescein-labeled monoclonal antibody as a model ADC. These techniques indicated possible small structure and stability changes by the conjugation, while largely retaining the tertiary structure of the antibody, consistent with unaltered biological activities. Thus, the above biophysical techniques are effective at detecting changes in the structural properties of ADC. PMID:27534450

  7. Radiation physics, biophysics, and radiation biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An important event of the year was the designation of our Laboratory as a Center for Radiological Research by the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Vice-President for Health Sciences. Center status acknowledges the size and importance of the research efforts in this area, and allows a greater measure of independence in administrative matters. While the name has changed from a Laboratory to a Center within the Medical School, the mission and charge remain the same. The efforts of the Center are a multidisciplinary mix of physics, chemistry, and biology, mostly at a basic level, with the admixture of a small proportion of pragmatic or applied research in support of radiation protection or radiation therapy. About a quarter of our funding, mostly individual research awards, could be regarded as in direct support of radiotherapy, with the remainder (an NCI program project grant and DOE grants) being in support of research addressing more basic issues. An important effort currently underway concerns ab-initio calculations of the dielectric response function of condensed water. This investigation has received the coveted designation, ''Grand Challenge Project,'' awarded by DOE to research work which represents ''distinct advance on a major scientific or engineering problem that is broadly recognized as important within the mission of the Department.''

  8. Delineating Biophysical Environments of the Sunda Banda Seascape, Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mingshu Wang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The Sunda Banda Seascape (SBS, located in the center of the Coral Triangle, is a global center of marine biodiversity and a conservation priority. We proposed the first biophysical environmental delineation of the SBS using globally available satellite remote sensing and model-assimilated data to categorize this area into unique and meaningful biophysical classes. Specifically, the SBS was partitioned into eight biophysical classes characterized by similar sea surface temperature, chlorophyll a concentration, currents, and salinity patterns. Areas within each class were expected to have similar habitat types and ecosystem functions. Our work supplemented prevailing global marine management schemes by focusing in on a regional scale with finer spatial resolution. It also provided a baseline for academic research, ecological assessments and will facilitate marine spatial planning and conservation activities in the area. In addition, the framework and methods of delineating biophysical environments we presented can be expanded throughout the whole Coral Triangle to support research and conservation activities in this important region.

  9. Skin Biophysical Characteristics in Patients with Keratoconus: A Controlled Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robati, Reza M.; Einollahi, Bahram; Einollahi, Hoda; Younespour, Shima; Fadaifard, Shahed

    2016-01-01

    Background. Keratoconus is a relatively common corneal disease causing significant visual disability. Individuals with connective tissue disorders that affect the skin such as Marfan's syndrome and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome or patients with atopic dermatitis show an increased prevalence of keratoconus. It seems that there are some concurrent alterations of skin and cornea in patients with keratoconus. Objective. We plan to compare skin biophysical characteristics in patients with keratoconus and healthy controls. Methods. Forty patients with keratoconus (18 females and 22 males) with mean (SD) age of 33.32 (9.55) years (range 19–56) and 40 healthy controls were recruited to this study. Skin biophysical characteristics including cutaneous resonance running time (CRRT), stratum corneum hydration, and melanin values were measured in patients and controls. Results. The median CRRT, stratum corneum hydration, and melanin measurements were significantly lower in patients with keratoconus in comparison with healthy controls. Conclusion. There are some alterations of skin biophysical properties in patients with keratoconus. Therefore, the assessment of these skin parameters could provide us some clues to the possible common biophysical variations of cornea and skin tissue in diseases such as keratoconus. PMID:27403376

  10. Institutional Factors Affecting Biophysical Outcomes in Forest Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coleman, Eric A.

    2009-01-01

    Although there is considerable interest in the impact of diverse policies affecting the biophysical outcomes in forests, gaining a substantial sample over time of forests under different institutional arrangements has been difficult. This article analyzes data from 46 forests located in six countries over time. In forests where policies have been…

  11. Biophysical Evaluation of Food Decontamination Effects on Tissue and Bacteria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Ann Zahle; Duelund, Lars; Brewer, Jonathan;

    2011-01-01

    that there are no contradictions between data obtained by either approach. However, the biophysical methods draw a much more nuanced picture of the effects and efficiency of the investigated decontamination method, revealing, e.g., an exponential dose/response relationship between SonoSteam® treatment time and changes in collagen...

  12. Skin Biophysical Characteristics in Patients with Keratoconus: A Controlled Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reza M. Robati

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Keratoconus is a relatively common corneal disease causing significant visual disability. Individuals with connective tissue disorders that affect the skin such as Marfan’s syndrome and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome or patients with atopic dermatitis show an increased prevalence of keratoconus. It seems that there are some concurrent alterations of skin and cornea in patients with keratoconus. Objective. We plan to compare skin biophysical characteristics in patients with keratoconus and healthy controls. Methods. Forty patients with keratoconus (18 females and 22 males with mean (SD age of 33.32 (9.55 years (range 19–56 and 40 healthy controls were recruited to this study. Skin biophysical characteristics including cutaneous resonance running time (CRRT, stratum corneum hydration, and melanin values were measured in patients and controls. Results. The median CRRT, stratum corneum hydration, and melanin measurements were significantly lower in patients with keratoconus in comparison with healthy controls. Conclusion. There are some alterations of skin biophysical properties in patients with keratoconus. Therefore, the assessment of these skin parameters could provide us some clues to the possible common biophysical variations of cornea and skin tissue in diseases such as keratoconus.

  13. Synthesis and Biophysical Characterization of Chlorambucil Anticancer Ether Lipid Prodrugs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Palle Jacob; Christensen, Mikkel Stochkendahl; Ruysschaert, Tristan;

    2009-01-01

    The synthesis and biophysical characterization of four prodrug ether phospholipid conjugates are described. The lipids are prepared from the anticancer drug chlorambucil and have C16 and C18 ether chains with phosphatidylcholine or phosphatidylglycerol headgroups. All four prodrugs have the ability...

  14. Surface-enhanced Raman scattering: a new optical probe in molecular biophysics and biomedicine

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kneipp, J.; Wittig, B.; Bohr, Henrik;

    2010-01-01

    Sensitive and detailed molecular structural information plays an increasing role in molecular biophysics and molecular medicine. Therefore, vibrational spectroscopic techniques, such as Raman scattering, which provide high structural information content are of growing interest in biophysical and ...

  15. Polish Academy of Sciences Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics research report 1994-1995

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Scientific interests of Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics Polish Academy of Sciences are focused on DNA replication and repair, gene expression, gene sequencing and molecular biophysics. The work reviews research projects of the Institute in 1994-1995

  16. Small-Angle X-ray Scattering Screening Complements Conventional Biophysical Analysis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tian, Xinsheng; Langkilde, Annette Eva; Thorolfsson, Matthias;

    2014-01-01

    introduce small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) to characterize antibody solution behavior, which strongly complements conventional biophysical analysis. First, we apply a variety of conventional biophysical techniques for the evaluation of structural, conformational, and colloidal stability and report...

  17. Polish Academy of Sciences Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics research report 1994-1995

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1996-12-31

    Scientific interests of Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics Polish Academy of Sciences are focused on DNA replication and repair, gene expression, gene sequencing and molecular biophysics. The work reviews research projects of the Institute in 1994-1995.

  18. Radiation physics, biophysics, and radiation biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Research at the Radiological Research Laboratory is a blend of physics, chemistry, and biology, involving research at the basic level with the admixture of a small proportion of pragmatic or applied research in support of radiation protection and/or radiotherapy. Current research topics include: oncogenic transformation assays, mutation studies involving interactions between radiation and environmental contaminants, isolation, characterization and sequencing of a human repair gene, characterization of a dominant transforming gene found in C3H 10T1/2 cells, characterize ab initio the interaction of DNA and radiation, refine estimates of the radiation quality factor Q, a new mechanistic model of oncogenesis showing the role of long-term low dose medium LET radiation, and time dependent modeling of radiation induced chromosome damage and subsequent repair or misrepair

  19. Mapping technological and biophysical capacities of watersheds to regulate floods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mogollon, Beatriz; Villamagna, Amy M.; Frimpong, Emmanuel A.; Angermeier, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Flood regulation is a widely valued and studied service provided by watersheds. Flood regulation benefits people directly by decreasing the socio-economic costs of flooding and indirectly by its positive impacts on cultural (e.g., fishing) and provisioning (e.g., water supply) ecosystem services. Like other regulating ecosystem services (e.g., pollination, water purification), flood regulation is often enhanced or replaced by technology, but the relative efficacy of natural versus technological features in controlling floods has scarcely been examined. In an effort to assess flood regulation capacity for selected urban watersheds in the southeastern United States, we: (1) used long-term flood records to assess relative influence of technological and biophysical indicators on flood magnitude and duration, (2) compared the widely used runoff curve number (RCN) approach for assessing the biophysical capacity to regulate floods to an alternative approach that acknowledges land cover and soil properties separately, and (3) mapped technological and biophysical flood regulation capacities based on indicator importance-values derived for flood magnitude and duration. We found that watersheds with high biophysical (via the alternative approach) and technological capacities lengthened the duration and lowered the peak of floods. We found the RCN approach yielded results opposite that expected, possibly because it confounds soil and land cover processes, particularly in urban landscapes, while our alternative approach coherently separates these processes. Mapping biophysical (via the alternative approach) and technological capacities revealed great differences among watersheds. Our study improves on previous mapping of flood regulation by (1) incorporating technological capacity, (2) providing high spatial resolution (i.e., 10-m pixel) maps of watershed capacities, and (3) deriving importance-values for selected landscape indicators. By accounting for technology that enhances

  20. The 1989 progress report: Polytechnic school laboratories' Direction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The 1989 progress report of the laboratories' Direction of the Polytechnic School (France) is presented. The research activities carried out in each laboratory are summarized. Scientific and technical cooperation, financial and employement aspects are included. The main fields of research are: biochemistry, chemistry, reaction mechanisms, organic synthesis, mechanics of solids, meteorology, irradiated solids, optics, physics, biophysics, lasers, mathematics, econometrics, epistemology, management and computer science

  1. Biophysical Insights from Temperature-Dependent Single-Molecule Förster Resonance Energy Transfer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmstrom, Erik D.; Nesbitt, David J.

    2016-05-01

    Single-molecule fluorescence microscopy techniques can be used in combination with micrometer length-scale temperature control and Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) in order to gain detailed information about fundamental biophysical phenomena. In particular, this combination of techniques has helped foster the development of remarkable quantitative tools for studying both time- and temperature-dependent structural kinetics of biopolymers. Over the past decade, multiple research efforts have successfully incorporated precise spatial and temporal control of temperature into single-molecule FRET (smFRET)-based experiments, which have uncovered critical thermodynamic information on a wide range of biological systems such as conformational dynamics of nucleic acids. This review provides an overview of various temperature-dependent smFRET approaches from our laboratory and others, highlighting efforts in which such methods have been successfully applied to studies of single-molecule nucleic acid folding.

  2. Linking Gap Model with MODIS Biophysical Products for Biomass Estimation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, D.; Sun, G.; Cai, Y.; Guo, Z.; Fu, A.; Ni, W.; Liu, D.

    With the development of earth observation technology and data processing technology biophysical data from remote sensing means such as MODIS LAI and NPP are accessible now However it is still difficult for direct measurement of biomass from remote sensors One possibility for overcoming this problem is using ecological models to link the vegetation parameters currently available from remote sensing to biomass In this paper a combined work is done for estimating forest biomass A calibrated gap model ZELIG was run to simulate the forest development in a temperate forested area in NE China The output relationship between age and biomass was linked to registered MODIS LAI NPP and land cover type images of the same area From the above work forest age or biomass was estimated from existing remote sensed data Obviously there is a lot of work to be done such as optimal combination of biophysical parameters to improve the linkage between MODIS product and ecological modeling

  3. Evolution and Biophysics of the Escherichia coli lac Operon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ray, J. Christian; Igoshin, Oleg; Quan, Selwyn; Monds, Russell; Cooper, Tim; Balázsi, Gábor

    2011-03-01

    To understand, predict, and control the evolution of living organisms, we consider biophysical effects and molecular network architectures. The lactose utilization system of E. coli is among the most well-studied molecular networks in biology, making it an ideal candidate for such studies. Simulations show how the genetic architecture of the wild-type operon attenuates large metabolic intermediate fluctuations that are predicted to occur in an equivalent system with the component genes on separate operons. Quantification of gene expression in the lac operon evolved in growth conditions containing constant lactose, alternating with glucose, or constant glucose, shows characteristic gene expression patterns depending on conditions. We are simulating these conditions to show context-dependent biophysical sources and costs of different lac operon architectures.

  4. Biophysical climate impacts of recent changes in global forest cover.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alkama, Ramdane; Cescatti, Alessandro

    2016-02-01

    Changes in forest cover affect the local climate by modulating the land-atmosphere fluxes of energy and water. The magnitude of this biophysical effect is still debated in the scientific community and currently ignored in climate treaties. Here we present an observation-driven assessment of the climate impacts of recent forest losses and gains, based on Earth observations of global forest cover and land surface temperatures. Our results show that forest losses amplify the diurnal temperature variation and increase the mean and maximum air temperature, with the largest signal in arid zones, followed by temperate, tropical, and boreal zones. In the decade 2003-2012, variations of forest cover generated a mean biophysical warming on land corresponding to about 18% of the global biogeochemical signal due to CO2 emission from land-use change.

  5. Elucidating diversity of exosomes: biophysical and molecular characterization methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khatun, Zamila; Bhat, Anjali; Sharma, Shivani; Sharma, Aman

    2016-09-01

    Exosomes are cell-secreted nanovesicles present in biological fluids in normal and diseased conditions. Owing to their seminal role in cell-cell communication, emerging evidences suggest that exosomes are fundamental regulators of various diseases. Due to their potential usefulness in disease diagnosis, robust isolation and characterization of exosomes is critical in developing exosome-based assays. In the last few years, different exosome characterization methods, both biophysical and molecular, have been developed to characterize these tiny vesicles. Here, in this review we summarize: first, biophysical techniques based on spectroscopy (e.g., Raman spectroscopy, dynamic light scattering) and other principles, for example, scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy; second, antibody-based molecular techniques including flow cytometry, transmission electron microscopy and third, nanotechnology-dependent exosome characterization methodologies. PMID:27488053

  6. Biophysical climate impacts of recent changes in global forest cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alkama, Ramdane; Cescatti, Alessandro

    2016-02-01

    Changes in forest cover affect the local climate by modulating the land-atmosphere fluxes of energy and water. The magnitude of this biophysical effect is still debated in the scientific community and currently ignored in climate treaties. Here we present an observation-driven assessment of the climate impacts of recent forest losses and gains, based on Earth observations of global forest cover and land surface temperatures. Our results show that forest losses amplify the diurnal temperature variation and increase the mean and maximum air temperature, with the largest signal in arid zones, followed by temperate, tropical, and boreal zones. In the decade 2003-2012, variations of forest cover generated a mean biophysical warming on land corresponding to about 18% of the global biogeochemical signal due to CO2 emission from land-use change.

  7. "The Physics of Life," an undergraduate general education biophysics course

    CERN Document Server

    Parthasarathy, Raghuveer

    2014-01-01

    Improving the scientific literacy of non-scientists is an important goal, both because of the ever-increasing impact of science and technology on our lives, and because understanding science enriches our experience of the natural world. One route to improving scientific literacy is via general education undergraduate courses -- i.e. courses intended for students not majoring in the sciences or engineering -- which in many cases provide these students' last formal exposure to science. I describe here a course on biophysics for non-science-major undergraduates recently developed at the University of Oregon (Eugene, OR, USA). Biophysics, I claim, is a particularly useful vehicle for addressing scientific literacy. It involves important and general scientific concepts, demonstrates connections between basic science and tangible, familiar phenomena related to health and disease, and illustrates that scientific insights develop by applying tools and perspectives from disparate fields in creative ways. In addition, ...

  8. The problem of morphogenesis: unscripted biophysical control systems in plants

    OpenAIRE

    Lintilhac, Philip M.

    2013-01-01

    The relative simplicity of plant developmental systems, having evolved within the universal constraints imposed by the plant cell wall, may allow us to outline a consistent developmental narrative that is not currently possible in the animal kingdom. In this article, I discuss three aspects of the development of the mature form in plants, approaching them in terms of the role played by the biophysics and mechanics of the cell wall during growth. First, I discuss axis extension in terms of a l...

  9. Biophysical basis for the geometry of conical stromatolites

    OpenAIRE

    Petroff, Alexander P.; Sim, Min Sub; Maslov, Andrey; Krupenin, Mikhail; Rothman, Daniel H.; Bosak, Tanja

    2010-01-01

    Stromatolites may be Earth’s oldest macroscopic fossils; however, it remains controversial what, if any, biological processes are recorded in their morphology. Although the biological interpretation of many stromatolite morphologies is confounded by the influence of sedimentation, conical stromatolites form in the absence of sedimentation and are, therefore, considered to be the most robust records of biophysical processes. A qualitative similarity between conical stromatolites and some moder...

  10. Biophysics of protein-DNA interactions and chromosome organization

    OpenAIRE

    Marko, John F.

    2015-01-01

    The function of DNA in cells depends on its interactions with protein molecules, which recognize and act on base sequence patterns along the double helix. These notes aim to introduce basic polymer physics of DNA molecules, biophysics of protein-DNA interactions and their study in single-DNA experiments, and some aspects of large-scale chromosome structure. Mechanisms for control of chromosome topology will also be discussed.

  11. Population Evacuation: Assessing Biophysical Risk and Social Vulnerability to Floods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sim, S.; Lee, D. H.

    2014-12-01

    A relatively new topic of environmental hazards research revolves around vulnerability to disasters. These studies focused separately on biophysical and social vulnerability perspectives. Only recently, community-based vulnerability studies have become common because of the recognition that combining social and biophysical components is important and practical (Cutter, et al., 2000; Cutter, et al., 2003; Turner, et al., 2003). Researchers have modeled vulnerability to analyze its spatial variation (Montz, Cross, and Cutter, 2006). This study aimed at developing a technical framework for community-based vulnerability to the specific hazards of floods. Developing a technical framework in this research used a "vulnerability of place" method (Hebb & Mortsch, 2007). The data reduction technique used was Principal Components Analysis (PCA) which allows for each variable to explain part of the vulnerability. The case study was on flooding in the Tennessee River Basin. The initial run with all 46 variables produced 13 components that explained 69.77% of the variance. Because of the relative homogeneity across the county (i.e., land use and soil types most vulnerable to flooding being located away from heavily populated areas) biophysical variables became less important in this region in creating overall risk scores. This is made all the more obvious by the number of social variables (17) compared to the number of biophysical variables (8) in the final components. The lowest risk block groups are located within the cities: central Florence, central, and central Madison. The highest risk block groups are in rural areas covered predominately with pasture and agricultural land or forests. They also lie near or within the 100 year floodplain.

  12. A quantitative overview of biophysical forces impinging on neural function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The fundamentals of neuronal membrane excitability are globally described using the Hodgkin-Huxley (HH) model. The HH model, however, does not account for a number of biophysical phenomena associated with action potentials or propagating nerve impulses. Physical mechanisms underlying these processes, such as reversible heat transfer and axonal swelling, have been compartmentalized and separately investigated to reveal neuronal activity is not solely influenced by electrical or biochemical factors. Instead, mechanical forces and thermodynamics also govern neuronal excitability and signaling. To advance our understanding of neuronal function and dysfunction, compartmentalized analyses of electrical, chemical, and mechanical processes need to be revaluated and integrated into more comprehensive theories. The present perspective is intended to provide a broad overview of biophysical forces that can influence neural function, but which have been traditionally underappreciated in neuroscience. Further, several examples where mechanical forces have been shown to exert their actions on nervous system development, signaling, and plasticity are highlighted to underscore their importance in sculpting neural function. By considering the collective actions of biophysical forces influencing neuronal activity, our working models can be expanded and new paradigms can be applied to the investigation and characterization of brain function and dysfunction. (topical review)

  13. Biophysical parameters in a wheat producer region in southern Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leivas, Janice F.; de C. Teixeira, Antonio Heriberto; Andrade, Ricardo G.; de C. Victoria, Daniel; Bolfe, Edson L.; Cruz, Caroline R.

    2014-10-01

    Wheat (Triticum aestivum) is the second most produced cereal in the world, and has major importance in the global agricultural economy. Brazil is a large producer of wheat, especially the Rio Grande do Sul state, located in the south of the country. The purpose of this study was to analyze the estimation of biophysical parameters - evapotranspiration (ET), biomass (BIO) and water productivity (WP) - from satellite images of the municipalities with large areas planted with wheat in Rio Grande do Sul (RS). The evapotranspiration rate was obtained using the SAFER Model (Simple Algorithm for Retrieving Evapotranspiration) on MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) images taken in the agricultural year 2012. In order to obtain biomass and water productivity rates we applied the Monteith model and the ratio between BIO and ET. In the beginning of the cycle (the planting period) we observed low values for ET, BIO and WP. During the development period, we observed an increase in the values of the parameters and decline at the end of the cycle, for the period of the wheat harvest. The SAFER model proved effective for estimating the biophysical parameters evapotranspiration, biomass production and water productivity in areas planted with wheat in Brazilian Southern. The methodology can be used for monitoring the crops' water conditions and biomass using satellite images, assisting in estimates of productivity and crop yield. The results may assist the understanding of biophysical properties of important agro-ecosystems, like wheat crop, and are important to improve the rational use of water resources.

  14. Modelling benthic biophysical drivers of ecosystem structure and biogeochemical response

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephens, Nicholas; Bruggeman, Jorn; Lessin, Gennadi; Allen, Icarus

    2016-04-01

    The fate of carbon deposited at the sea floor is ultimately decided by biophysical drivers that control the efficiency of remineralisation and timescale of carbon burial in sediments. Specifically, these drivers include bioturbation through ingestion and movement, burrow-flushing and sediment reworking, which enhance vertical particulate transport and solute diffusion. Unfortunately, these processes are rarely satisfactorily resolved in models. To address this, a benthic model that explicitly describes the vertical position of biology (e.g., habitats) and biogeochemical processes is presented that includes biological functionality and biogeochemical response capturing changes in ecosystem structure, benthic-pelagic fluxes and biodiversity on inter-annual timescales. This is demonstrated by the model's ability to reproduce temporal variability in benthic infauna, vertical pore water nutrients and pelagic-benthic solute fluxes compared to in-situ data. A key advance is the replacement of bulk parameterisation of bioturbation by explicit description of the bio-physical processes responsible. This permits direct comparison with observations and determination of key parameters in experiments. Crucially, the model resolves the two-way interaction between sediment biogeochemistry and ecology, allowing exploration of the benthic response to changing environmental conditions, the importance of infaunal functional traits in shaping benthic ecological structure and the feedback the resulting bio-physical processes exert on pore water nutrient profiles. The model is actively being used to understand shelf sea carbon cycling, the response of the benthos to climatic change, food provision and other societal benefits.

  15. Biophysical research requirements for Beaufort Sea hydrocarbon development

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2008-08-15

    This review identified biophysical research requirements and data gaps for the development of hydrocarbon resources in the Beaufort Sea. The potential major effects of critical activities during each phase of the offshore oil and gas development cycle were identified in order to assess the impacts on local communities and traditional harvesting methods. Baseline environmental conditions were established. Information needs were ranked using 3 criteria: (1) the current understanding of the biophysical component in terms of present status and long-term sustainability, (2) the potential impact of the oil and gas development on the long-term sustainability of the biophysical component, and (3) the timeline for completion of the research relative to the expected development for the Beaufort Sea region. Mitigation and environmental management plans were outlined, and key research, data collection, and data analyses required to address data gaps were identified. Previous gap analyses for the region were reviewed. Data from a series of workshops conducted with various stakeholders were also included in the study. High research priorities include the assessment of the effects of climatic change on the physical oceanography of the region, studies on deepwater plankton, benthos, and fish. It was concluded that studies are needed to determine the effects of development on marine mammals, avifauna, and macroalgae. 207 refs., 49 tabs., 4 figs.

  16. PREFACE: Nanoelectronics, sensors and single molecule biophysics Nanoelectronics, sensors and single molecule biophysics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tao, Nongjian

    2012-04-01

    This special section of Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter (JPCM) is dedicated to Professor Stuart M Lindsay on the occasion of his 60th birthday and in recognition of his outstanding contributions to multiple research areas, including light scattering spectroscopy, scanning probe microscopy, biophysics, solid-liquid interfaces and molecular and nanoelectronics. It contains a collection of 14 papers in some of these areas, including a feature article by Lindsay. Each paper was subject to the normal rigorous review process of JPCM. In Lindsay's paper, he discusses the next generations of hybrid chemical-CMOS devices for low cost and personalized medical diagnosis. The discussion leads to several papers on nanotechnology for biomedical applications. Kawaguchi et al report on the detection of single pollen allergen particles using electrode embedded microchannels. Stern et al describe a structural study of three-dimensional DNA-nanoparticle assemblies. Hihath et al measure the conductance of methylated DNA, and discuss the possibility of electrical detection DNA methylation. Portillo et al study the electrostatic effects on the aggregation of prion proteins and peptides with atomic force microscopy. In an effort to understand the interactions between nanostructures and cells, Lamprecht et al report on the mapping of the intracellular distribution of carbon nanotubes with a confocal Raman imaging technique, and Wang et al focus on the intracellular delivery of gold nanoparticles using fluorescence microscopy. Park and Kristic provide theoretical analysis of micro- and nano-traps and their biological applications. This section also features several papers on the fundamentals of electron transport in single atomic wires and molecular junctions. The papers by Xu et al and by Wandlowksi et al describe new methods to measure conductance and forces in single molecule junctions and metallic atomic wires. Scullion et al report on the conductance of molecules with similar

  17. Biophysical approach to chronic kidney disease management in older patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alberto Foletti

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Chronic kidney disease (CKD and its clinical progression are a critical issue in an aging population. Therefore, strategies aimed at preventing and managing the decline of renal function are warranted. Recent evidence has provided encouraging results for the improvement of renal function achieved through an integrated biophysical approach, but prospective studies on the clinical efficacy of this strategy are still lacking. This was an open-label prospective pilot study to investigate the effect of electromagnetic information transfer through the aqueous system on kidney function of older patients affected by stage 1 or 2 CKD. Patients received biophysical therapy every 3 months over a 1-year period. Estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR values were calculated using the CKD–Epidemiology Collaboration formula, and were recorded at baseline and at the end of treatment. Overall, 58 patients (mean age 74.8 ± 3.7 years were included in the study. At baseline, mean eGFR was 64.6 ± 15.5 mL/min, and it significantly increased to 69.9 ± 15.8 mL/min after 1 year (+5.2 ± 10 mL/min, p<0.0002. The same trend was observed among men (+5.7 ± 10.2 mL/min, p<0.0064 and women (+4.7 ± 9.9 mL/min, p<0.014. When results were analyzed by sex, no difference was found between the 2 groups. Although further and larger prospective studies are needed, our findings suggest that an integrated biophysical approach may be feasible in the management of older patients with early-stage CKD, to reduce and prevent the decline of renal function due to aging or comorbidities.

  18. Spectromicroscopy in Biophysics with MEPHISTO: Instrumentation Aspects and Technical Improvements

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Stasio, Gelsomina; Capozi, Mario; Gilbert, Benjamin; Perfetti, Paolo; Droubay, Tim; Pauli, Brian; Tonner, Giorgio; Margaritondo, Georgio

    1998-03-01

    The synchrotron imaging photoelectron spectromicroscope MEPHISTO recently reached the world record resolution of 50 nm. We will present the design and performance of this novel instrument, which is mainly dedicated to biophysics experiments in neurobiology, but is also used in materials science research. We will also discuss the possibility of using the MEPHISTO in the transmission mode, as opposed to the photoemission mode, and the unique possibility of studying live cells. Elemental analysis of living biological systems in the microscopic domain is not possible with any other instrument to our knowledge.

  19. Plant Sucrose Transporters from a Biophysical Point of View

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Dietmar Geiger

    2011-01-01

    T The majority of higher plants use sucrose as their main mobile carbohydrate. Proton-driven sucrose transporters play a crucial role in cell-to-cell and long-distance distribution of sucrose throughout the plant. A very negative plant membrane potential and the ability of sucrose transporters to accumulate sucrose concentrations of more than 1 M indicate that plants evolved transporters with unique structural and functional features. The knowledge about the transport mechanism and structural/functional domains of these nano-machines is, however, still fragmentary. In this review,the current knowledge about the biophysical properties of plant sucrose transporters is summarized and discussed.

  20. From biophysics to evolutionary genetics: statistical aspects of gene regulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lässig Michael

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract This is an introductory review on how genes interact to produce biological functions. Transcriptional interactions involve the binding of proteins to regulatory DNA. Specific binding sites can be identified by genomic analysis, and these undergo a stochastic evolution process governed by selection, mutations, and genetic drift. We focus on the links between the biophysical function and the evolution of regulatory elements. In particular, we infer fitness landscapes of binding sites from genomic data, leading to a quantitative evolutionary picture of regulation.

  1. Mass spectrometry in structural biology and biophysics architecture, dynamics, and interaction of biomolecules

    CERN Document Server

    Kaltashov, Igor A; Desiderio, Dominic M; Nibbering, Nico M

    2012-01-01

    The definitive guide to mass spectrometry techniques in biology and biophysics The use of mass spectrometry (MS) to study the architecture and dynamics of proteins is increasingly common within the biophysical community, and Mass Spectrometry in Structural Biology and Biophysics: Architecture, Dynamics, and Interaction of Biomolecules, Second Edition provides readers with detailed, systematic coverage of the current state of the art. Offering an unrivalled overview of modern MS-based armamentarium that can be used to solve the most challenging problems in biophysics, structural biol

  2. Methods of high throughput biophysical characterization in biopharmaceutical development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Razinkov, Vladimir I; Treuheit, Michael J; Becker, Gerald W

    2013-03-01

    Discovery and successful development of biopharmaceutical products depend on a thorough characterization of the molecule both before and after formulation. Characterization of a formulated biotherapeutic, typically a protein or large peptide, requires a rigorous assessment of the molecule's physical stability. Stability of a biotherapeutic includes not only chemical stability, i.e., degradation of the molecule to form undesired modifications, but also structural stability, including the formation of aggregates. In this review, high throughput biophysical characterization techniques are described according to their specific applications during biopharmaceutical discovery, development and manufacturing. The methods presented here are classified according to these attributes, and include spectroscopic assays based on absorbance, polarization, intrinsic and extrinsic fluorescence, surface plasmon resonance instrumentation, calorimetric methods, dynamic and static light scattering techniques, several visible particle counting and sizing methods, new viscosity assay, based on light scattering and mass spectrometry. Several techniques presented here are already implemented in industry; but, many high throughput biophysical methods are still in the initial stages of implementation or even in the prototype stage. Each technique in this report is judged by the specific application of the method through the biopharmaceutical development process. PMID:22725690

  3. Biophysical Modeling of Alpha Rhythms During Halothane-Induced Unconsciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vijayan, Sujith; Ching, ShiNung; Purdon, Patrick L; Brown, Emery N; Kopell, Nancy J

    2013-01-01

    During the induction of general anesthesia there is a shift in power from the posterior regions of the brain to the frontal cortices; this shift in power is called anteriorization. For many anesthetics, a prominent feature of anteriorization is a shift specifically in the alpha band (8-13 Hz) from posterior to frontal cortices. Here we present a biophysical computational model that describes thalamocortical circuit-level dynamics underlying anteriorization of the alpha rhythm in the case of halothane. Halothane potentiates GABAA and increases potassium leak conductances. According to our model, an increase in potassium leak conductances hyperpolarizes and silences the high-threshold thalamocortical (HTC) cells, a specialized subset of thalamocortical cells that fire at the alpha frequency at relatively depolarized membrane potentials (>-60 mV) and are thought to be the generators of quiet awake occipital alpha. At the same time the potentiation of GABAA imposes an alpha time scale on both the cortical and the thalamic component of the frontal portion of our model. The alpha activity in the frontal component is further strengthened by reciprocal thalamocortical feedback. Thus, we argue that the dual molecular targets of halothane induce the anteriorization of the alpha rhythm by increasing potassium leak conductances, which abolishes occipital alpha, and by potentiating GABAA, which induces frontal alpha. These results provide a computational modeling formulation for studying highly detailed biophysical mechanisms of anesthetic action in silico.

  4. Voltage-gated sodium channels: biophysics, pharmacology, and related channelopathies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eleonora eSavio Galimberti

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSC are multi-molecular protein complexes expressed in both excitable and non-excitable cells. They are primarily formed by a pore-forming multi-spanning integral membrane glycoprotein (α-subunit that can be associated with one or more regulatory β-subunits. The latter are single-span integral membrane proteins that modulate the sodium current (INa and can also function as cell-adhesion molecules (CAMs. In-vitro some of the cell-adhesive functions of the β-subunits may play important physiological roles independently of the α-subunits. Other endogenous regulatory proteins named channel partners or channel interacting proteins (ChiPs like caveolin-3 and calmodulin/calmodulin kinase II (CaMKII can also interact and modulate the expression and/or function of VGSC. In addition to their physiological roles in cell excitability and cell adhesion, VGSC are the site of action of toxins (like tetrodotoxin and saxitoxin, and pharmacologic agents (like antiarrhythmic drugs, local anesthetics, antiepileptic drugs, and newly developed analgesics. Mutations in genes that encode α- and/or β-subunits as well as the ChiPs can affect the structure and biophysical properties of VGSC, leading to the development of diseases termed sodium channelopathies. This review will outline the structure, function and biophysical properties of VGSC as well as their pharmacology and associated channelopathies and highlight some of the recent advances in this field

  5. Biophysical influence of airborne carbon nanomaterials on natural pulmonary surfactant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valle, Russell P; Wu, Tony; Zuo, Yi Y

    2015-05-26

    Inhalation of nanoparticles (NP), including lightweight airborne carbonaceous nanomaterials (CNM), poses a direct and systemic health threat to those who handle them. Inhaled NP penetrate deep pulmonary structures in which they first interact with the pulmonary surfactant (PS) lining at the alveolar air-water interface. In spite of many research efforts, there is a gap of knowledge between in vitro biophysical study and in vivo inhalation toxicology since all existing biophysical models handle NP-PS interactions in the liquid phase. This technical limitation, inherent in current in vitro methodologies, makes it impossible to simulate how airborne NP deposit at the PS film and interact with it. Existing in vitro NP-PS studies using liquid-suspended particles have been shown to artificially inflate the no-observed adverse effect level of NP exposure when compared to in vivo inhalation studies and international occupational exposure limits (OELs). Here, we developed an in vitro methodology called the constrained drop surfactometer (CDS) to quantitatively study PS inhibition by airborne CNM. We show that airborne multiwalled carbon nanotubes and graphene nanoplatelets induce a concentration-dependent PS inhibition under physiologically relevant conditions. The CNM aerosol concentrations controlled in the CDS are comparable to those defined in international OELs. Development of the CDS has the potential to advance our understanding of how submicron airborne nanomaterials affect the PS lining of the lung.

  6. Biophysical basis for noninvasive skin cancer detection using Raman spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Xu; Moy, Austin J.; Markey, Mia K.; Fox, Matthew C.; Reichenberg, Jason S.; Tunnell, James W.

    2016-03-01

    Raman spectroscopy (RS) is proving to be a valuable tool for real time noninvasive skin cancer detection via optical fiber probe. However, current methods utilizing RS for skin cancer diagnosis rely on statistically based algorithms to provide tissue classification and do not elucidate the underlying biophysical changes of skin tissue. Therefore, we aim to use RS to explore skin biochemical and structural characteristics and then correlate the Raman spectrum of skin tissue with its disease state. We have built a custom confocal micro-Raman spectrometer system with an 830nm laser light. The high resolution capability of the system allows us to measure spectroscopic features from individual tissue components in situ. Raman images were collected from human skin samples from Mohs surgical biopsy, which were then compared with confocal laser scanning, two-photon fluorescence and hematoxylin and eosin-stained images to develop a linear model of skin tissue Raman spectra. In this model, macroscopic tissue spectra obtained from RS fiber probe were fit into a linear combination of individual basis spectra of primary skin constituents. The fit coefficient of the model explains the biophysical changes spanning a range of normal and various disease states. The model allows for determining parameters similar to that a pathologist is familiar reading and will be a significant guidance in developing RS diagnostic decision schemes.

  7. Climate Change Effects on Agriculture: Economic Responses to Biophysical Shocks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Gerald C.; Valin, Hugo; Sands, Ronald D.; Havlik, Petr; Ahammad, Helal; Deryng, Delphine; Elliott, Joshua; Fujimori, Shinichiro; Hasegawa, Tomoko; Heyhoe, Edwina

    2014-01-01

    Agricultural production is sensitive to weather and thus directly affected by climate change. Plausible estimates of these climate change impacts require combined use of climate, crop, and economic models. Results from previous studies vary substantially due to differences in models, scenarios, and data. This paper is part of a collective effort to systematically integrate these three types of models. We focus on the economic component of the assessment, investigating how nine global economic models of agriculture represent endogenous responses to seven standardized climate change scenarios produced by two climate and five crop models. These responses include adjustments in yields, area, consumption, and international trade. We apply biophysical shocks derived from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's representative concentration pathway with end-of-century radiative forcing of 8.5 W/m(sup 2). The mean biophysical yield effect with no incremental CO2 fertilization is a 17% reduction globally by 2050 relative to a scenario with unchanging climate. Endogenous economic responses reduce yield loss to 11%, increase area of major crops by 11%, and reduce consumption by 3%. Agricultural production, cropland area, trade, and prices show the greatest degree of variability in response to climate change, and consumption the lowest. The sources of these differences include model structure and specification; in particular, model assumptions about ease of land use conversion, intensification, and trade. This study identifies where models disagree on the relative responses to climate shocks and highlights research activities needed to improve the representation of agricultural adaptation responses to climate change.

  8. Social and Biophysical Predictors of Public Perceptions of Extreme Fires

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, T. E.; Kooistra, C. M.; Paveglio, T.; Gress, S.; Smith, A. M.

    2013-12-01

    To date, what constitutes an 'extreme' fire has been approached separately by biophysical and social scientists. Research on the biophysical characteristics of fires has identified potential dimensions of extremity, including fire size and vegetation mortality. On the social side, factors such as the degree of immediate impact to one's life and property or the extent of social disruption in the community contribute to a perception of extremity. However, some biophysical characteristics may also contribute to perceptions of extremity, including number of simultaneous ignitions, rapidity of fire spread, atypical fire behavior, and intensity of smoke. Perceptions of these impacts can vary within and across communities, but no studies to date have investigated such perceptions in a comprehensive way. In this study, we address the question, to what extent is the magnitude of impact of fires on WUI residents' well-being explained by measurable biophysical characteristics of the fire and subjective evaluations of the personal and community-level impacts of the fire? We bring together diverse strands of psychological theory, including landscape perception, mental models, risk perception, and community studies. The majority of social science research on fires has been in the form of qualitative case studies, and our study is methodologically unique by using a nested design (hierarchical modeling) to enable generalizable conclusions across a wide range of fires and human communities. We identified fires that burned in 2011 or 2012 in the northern Rocky Mountain region that were at least 1,000 acres and that intersected (within 15 km) urban clusters or identified Census places. For fires where an adequately large number of households was located in proximity to the fire, we drew random samples of approximately 150 individuals for each fire. We used a hybrid internet (Qualtrics) and mail survey, following the Dillman method, to measure individual perceptions. We developed two

  9. HYDROMECHANICS LABORATORY

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Naval Academy Hydromechanics Laboratory The Naval Academy Hydromechanics Laboratory (NAHL) began operations in Rickover Hall in September 1976. The primary purpose...

  10. Annual report of the Laboratory for Condensed Matter Physics, and the Biophysics Group

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Research on photoemission and photoluminescence in quantum wells; photoemission assisted by electric fields; the electrochemistry of the semiconductor-electrolyte interface; MESFET's; fractal physics; amorphous silicon; superionic and mixed conductors; solids chemistry and NMR; internal motion of nucleic acids; cardiophysiology; imaging of microscopic internal motions; and Ap4A metabolism is presented

  11. Annual report of the Laboratory of Condensed Matter Physics, and the Biophysics Group, 1985

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Research on photoemission and photoluminescence in quantum wells; photoemission assisted by electric fields; the electrochemistry of the semiconductor-electrolyte interface; transport properties of MESFET's; fractal physics; amorphous silicon; superionic and mixed conductors; solids chemistry and NMR; internal motion of nucleic acids; cardiophysiology; imaging of microscopic internal motions; and Ap4A metabolism is presented

  12. Single File Dynamics Advances with a Focus on Biophysical Relevance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flomenbom, Ophir

    2014-08-01

    In this review (appearing in the Special Issue on single file dynamics in biophysics and related extensions), three recently treated variants in file dynamics are presented: files with density that is not fixed, files with heterogeneous particles, and files with slow particles. The results in these files include: • In files with a density law that is not fixed, but decays as a power law with an exponent a the distance from the origin, the particle in the origin mean square displacement (MSD) scales like MSD t[1+a]/2, with a Gaussian probability density function (PDF). This extends the scaling, MSD t1/2, seen in a constant density file. • When, in addition, the particles' diffusion coefficients are distributed like a power law with an exponent γ (around the origin), the MSD follows MSD t[1-γ]/[2/(1+a) - γ], with a Gaussian PDF. • In anomalous files that are renewal, namely, when all particles attempt a jump together, yet, with jump times taken from a PDF that decays as a power law with an exponent -1 - ɛ, ψ(t) t-1-ɛ, the MSD scales like the MSD of the corresponding normal file, in the power ɛ. • In anomalous files of independent particles, the MSD is very slow and scales like MSD log2(t). Even more exciting, the particles form clusters, defining a dynamical phase transition: depending on the anomaly power ɛ, the percentage of particles in clusters ξ follows ξ = √ {1-ǎrepsilon3}, yet when ɛ > 1, fluidity rather than clusters is seen. We talk about utilizing these results while focusing on biophysical processes and applications: dynamics in channels, membranes, biosensors, etc. Special Issue Comments: In this article, results about recently suggested variants in single file dynamics appear: heterogeneous files and slow files, yet also, the relevance with biophysical processes. It is related to the Special Issue articles about expansions in files,61 files with force,62 and the zig zag occurrences in files.63

  13. Fluorescence Quantum Yield Measurements of Fluorescent Proteins: A Laboratory Experiment for a Biochemistry or Molecular Biophysics Laboratory Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wall, Kathryn P.; Dillon, Rebecca; Knowles, Michelle K.

    2015-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins are commonly used in cell biology to assess where proteins are within a cell as a function of time and provide insight into intracellular protein function. However, the usefulness of a fluorescent protein depends directly on the quantum yield. The quantum yield relates the efficiency at which a fluorescent molecule converts…

  14. Biophysics of magnetic orientation: strengthening the interface between theory and experimental design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirschvink, Joseph L.; Winklhofer, Michael; Walker, Michael M.

    2010-01-01

    The first demonstrations of magnetic effects on the behaviour of migratory birds and homing pigeons in laboratory and field experiments, respectively, provided evidence for the longstanding hypothesis that animals such as birds that migrate and home over long distances would benefit from possession of a magnetic sense. Subsequent identification of at least two plausible biophysical mechanisms for magnetoreception in animals, one based on biogenic magnetite and another on radical-pair biochemical reactions, led to major efforts over recent decades to test predictions of the two models, as well as efforts to understand the ultrastructure and function of the possible magnetoreceptor cells. Unfortunately, progress in understanding the magnetic sense has been challenged by: (i) the availability of a relatively small number of techniques for analysing behavioural responses to magnetic fields by animals; (ii) difficulty in achieving reproducible results using the techniques; and (iii) difficulty in development and implementation of new techniques that might bring greater experimental power. As a consequence, laboratory and field techniques used to study the magnetic sense today remain substantially unchanged, despite the huge developments in technology and instrumentation since the techniques were developed in the 1950s. New methods developed for behavioural study of the magnetic sense over the last 30 years include the use of laboratory conditioning techniques and tracking devices based on transmission of radio signals to and from satellites. Here we consider methodological developments in the study of the magnetic sense and present suggestions for increasing the reproducibility and ease of interpretation of experimental studies. We recommend that future experiments invest more effort in automating control of experiments and data capture, control of stimulation and full blinding of experiments in the rare cases where automation is impossible. We also propose new

  15. Biophysics and Thermodynamics: The Scientific Building Blocks of Bio-inspired Drug Delivery Nano Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demetzos, Costas

    2015-06-01

    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.

  16. Perspective: Quantum mechanical methods in biochemistry and biophysics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, Qiang

    2016-10-01

    In this perspective article, I discuss several research topics relevant to quantum mechanical (QM) methods in biophysical and biochemical applications. Due to the immense complexity of biological problems, the key is to develop methods that are able to strike the proper balance of computational efficiency and accuracy for the problem of interest. Therefore, in addition to the development of novel ab initio and density functional theory based QM methods for the study of reactive events that involve complex motifs such as transition metal clusters in metalloenzymes, it is equally important to develop inexpensive QM methods and advanced classical or quantal force fields to describe different physicochemical properties of biomolecules and their behaviors in complex environments. Maintaining a solid connection of these more approximate methods with rigorous QM methods is essential to their transferability and robustness. Comparison to diverse experimental observables helps validate computational models and mechanistic hypotheses as well as driving further development of computational methodologies.

  17. Biophysics of selectin-ligand interactions in inflammation and cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siu-Lun Cheung, Luthur; Raman, Phrabha S.; Balzer, Eric M.; Wirtz, Denis; Konstantopoulos, Konstantinos

    2011-02-01

    Selectins (l-, e- and p-selectin) are calcium-dependent transmembrane glycoproteins that are expressed on the surface of circulating leukocytes, activated platelets, and inflamed endothelial cells. Selectins bind predominantly to sialofucosylated glycoproteins and glycolipids (e-selectin only) present on the surface of apposing cells, and mediate transient adhesive interactions pertinent to inflammation and cancer metastasis. The rapid turnover of selectin-ligand bonds, due to their fast on- and off-rates along with their remarkably high tensile strengths, enables them to mediate cell tethering and rolling in shear flow. This paper presents the current body of knowledge regarding the role of selectins in inflammation and cancer metastasis, and discusses experimental methodologies and mathematical models used to resolve the biophysics of selectin-mediated cell adhesion. Understanding the biochemistry and biomechanics of selectin-ligand interactions pertinent to inflammatory disorders and cancer metastasis may provide insights for developing promising therapies and/or diagnostic tools to combat these disorders.

  18. Biophysical and Physiological Basis of Human Cold Acclimatization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bal Krishna

    1968-05-01

    Full Text Available On exposure to cold, the problem is to maintain internal temperature of the human body in the presence of an increased thermal gradient between the core and the external environment. The ability to maintain homeothermy in the cold environment is enhanced in the acclimatized man. Superimposed upon the adaptive responses of the whole body to cold exposure are the adaptive responses of the extermities to avoid severe cold injury. The two major methods of adjustment to cold exposure are metabolic adjustments and peripheral cooling. Metabolic adjustment involve an increase in heat production in response to a cold stress such as shivering and non shivering thermogenesis and voluntary muscular activity. Peripheral cooling reduce the loss of heat from the skin by effectively increasing the thickness of relatively cooler peripheral tissues. The available literature on human cold acclimatization has been surveyed with a view to explain the biophysical and physiological mechanisms involved in the process of acclimatization.

  19. 19th International School of Biophysics "Ettore Majorana"

    CERN Document Server

    Blank, M; Bioelectrochemistry III : Charge Separation across Biomembranes

    1988-01-01

    This book contains aseries of review papers related to the lectures given at the Third Course on Bioelectrochemistry held at Erice in November 1988, in the framework of the International School of Biophysics. The topics covered by this course, "Charge Separation Across Biomembranes, " deal with the electrochemical aspects of some basic phenomena in biological systems, such as transport of ions, ATP synthesis, formation and maintenance of ionic and protonic gradients. In the first part of the course some preliminary lectures introduce the students to the most basic phenomena and technical aspects of membrane bioelectrochemistry. The remaining part of the course is devoted to the description of a selected group of membrane-enzyme systems, capable of promoting, or exploiting, the processes of separation of electrically charged entities (electrons or ions) across the membrane barrier. These systems are systematically discussed both from a structural and functional point of view. The effort of the many dis...

  20. Biophysics and Structure to Counter Threats and Challenges

    CERN Document Server

    Margaris, Manolia

    2013-01-01

    This ASI brought together a diverse group of experts who span virology, biology, biophysics, chemistry, physics and engineering.  Prominent lecturers representing world renowned scientists from nine (9) different countries, and students from around the world representing eighteen (18) countries, participated in the ASI organized by Professors Joseph Puglisi (Stanford University, USA) and Alexander Arseniev (Moscow, RU).   The central hypothesis underlying this ASI was that interdisciplinary research, merging principles of physics, chemistry and biology, can drive new discovery in detecting and fighting chemical and bioterrorism agents, lead to cleaner environments and improved energy sources, and help propel development in NATO partner countries.  At the end of the ASI students had an appreciation of how to apply each technique to their own particular research problem and to demonstrate that multifaceted approaches and new technologies are needed to solve the biological challenges of our time.  The course...

  1. Biophysics of filament length regulation by molecular motors

    CERN Document Server

    Kuan, Hui-Shun

    2013-01-01

    Regulating physical size is an essential problem that biological organisms must solve from the subcellular to the organismal scales, but it is not well understood what physical principles and mechanisms organisms use to sense and regulate their size. Any biophysical size-regulation scheme operates in a noisy environment and must be robust to other cellular dynamics and fluctuations. This work develops theory of filament length regulation inspired by recent experiments on kinesin-8 motor proteins, which move with directional bias on microtubule filaments and alter microtubule dynamics. Purified kinesin-8 motors can depolymerize chemically-stabilized microtubules. In the length-dependent depolymerization model, the rate of depolymerization tends to increase with filament length, because long filaments accumulate more motors at their tips and therefore shorten more quickly. When balanced with a constant filament growth rate, this mechanism can lead to a fixed polymer length. However, the mechanism by which kines...

  2. TOPICAL REVIEW: The physics, biophysics and technology of photodynamic therapy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Brian C.; Patterson, Michael S.

    2008-05-01

    Photodynamic therapy (PDT) uses light-activated drugs to treat diseases ranging from cancer to age-related macular degeneration and antibiotic-resistant infections. This paper reviews the current status of PDT with an emphasis on the contributions of physics, biophysics and technology, and the challenges remaining in the optimization and adoption of this treatment modality. A theme of the review is the complexity of PDT dosimetry due to the dynamic nature of the three essential components—light, photosensitizer and oxygen. Considerable progress has been made in understanding the problem and in developing instruments to measure all three, so that optimization of individual PDT treatments is becoming a feasible target. The final section of the review introduces some new frontiers of research including low dose rate (metronomic) PDT, two-photon PDT, activatable PDT molecular beacons and nanoparticle-based PDT.

  3. The BIOMAT facility at FAIR: a new tool for ground-based research in space radiation biophysics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durante, Marco

    The BIOMAT facility at FAIR: a new tool for ground-based research in space radiation biophysics M.Durante The FAIR accelerator complex at GSI (placeCityDarmstadt, country-regionGermany) will be a unique facility, where heavy ions with energies up to about 45 A GeV can be used for radiation biology experiments. The study of these very high charge and energy (HZE) particles is not only interesting for understanding the mechanisms of radiation action in living system, but also for radiation protection purposes. For space radiobiology, it is generally acknowledged that accelerator-based experiments are preferable to expensive and poorly reproducible flight tests, which are also presently unable to simulate the space radiation field beyond Earth's geomagnetic field. For these very reason, NASA has started the Space Radiation Health Program, building the 34 M NASA Space Radiation Laboratory (NSRL) at the Brookhaven National Laboratory (NY), and funding several research groups for studying biological effects of heavy ions with mass up to 56 (iron) and energy up to metricconverterProductID1 A1 A GeV. FAIR offers a number of unique opportunities in this frame. First, the beamtime available at NSRL is not sufficient to accommodate many non-US research groups, while the research needs are becoming urgent: uncertainty should be reduced to ±50% and effective countermeasures (physical and medical) developed by 2025 if a mission to Mars has to be performed within the first half of the XXI century. FAIR can be used to test a higher energy range (1- metricconverterProductID35 A35 A GeV), which has a low flux in space but is particularly penetrating and consequently impossible to shield. Finally, the raster scanning system used at GSI offers unique opportunities for biological experiments requiring precise exposures of parts of tissue or animal targets. The group of Biophysics at GSI has along experience in the field of space radiation protection, which naturally stems from heavy

  4. Biophysical and structural considerations for protein sequence evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grahnen Johan A

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein sequence evolution is constrained by the biophysics of folding and function, causing interdependence between interacting sites in the sequence. However, current site-independent models of sequence evolutions do not take this into account. Recent attempts to integrate the influence of structure and biophysics into phylogenetic models via statistical/informational approaches have not resulted in expected improvements in model performance. This suggests that further innovations are needed for progress in this field. Results Here we develop a coarse-grained physics-based model of protein folding and binding function, and compare it to a popular informational model. We find that both models violate the assumption of the native sequence being close to a thermodynamic optimum, causing directional selection away from the native state. Sampling and simulation show that the physics-based model is more specific for fold-defining interactions that vary less among residue type. The informational model diffuses further in sequence space with fewer barriers and tends to provide less support for an invariant sites model, although amino acid substitutions are generally conservative. Both approaches produce sequences with natural features like dN/dS Conclusions Simple coarse-grained models of protein folding can describe some natural features of evolving proteins but are currently not accurate enough to use in evolutionary inference. This is partly due to improper packing of the hydrophobic core. We suggest possible improvements on the representation of structure, folding energy, and binding function, as regards both native and non-native conformations, and describe a large number of possible applications for such a model.

  5. Space Based Ornithology: On the Wings of Migration and Biophysics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, James A.

    2005-01-01

    The study of bird migration on a global scale is one of the compelling and challenging problems of modern biology with major implications for human health and conservation biology. Migration and conservation efforts cross national boundaries and are subject to numerous international agreements and treaties. Space based technology offers new opportunities to shed understanding on the distribution and migration of organisms on the planet and their sensitivity to human disturbances and environmental changes. Migration is an incredibly diverse and complex behavior. A broad outline of space based research must address three fundamental questions: (1) where could birds be, i.e. what is their fundamental niche constrained by their biophysical limits? (2) where do we actually find birds, i.e. what is their realizable niche as modified by local or regional abiotic and biotic factors, and (3) how do they get there (and how do we know?), that is what are their migration patterns and associated mechanisms? Our working hypothesis is that individual organism biophysical models of energy and water balance, driven by satellite measurements of spatio-temporal gradients in climate and habitat, will help us to explain the variability in avian species richness and distribution. Dynamic state variable modeling provides one tool for studying bird migration across multiple scales and can be linked to mechanistic models describing the time and energy budget states of migrating birds. Such models yield an understanding of how a migratory flyway and its component habitats function as a whole and link stop-over ecology with biological conservation and management. Further these models provide an ecological forecasting tool for science and application users to address what are the possible consequences of loss of wetlands, flooding, drought or other natural disasters such as hurricanes on avian biodiversity and bird migration.

  6. Review of in vivo static and ELF electric fields studies performed at Gazi Biophysics Department.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seyhan, Nesrin; Güler, Göknur

    2006-01-01

    In vivo effects of Static Electric and ELF Magnetic and Electric fields have been carried out for more than 20 years in the Bioelectromagnetic Laboratory at the Biophysics Department of the Medical Faculty of Gazi University. In this article, the results of in vivo ELF Electric field studies are presented as a review. Static and 50 Hz ELF (Extremely Low Frequency) Electric (E) fields effects on free radical synthesis, antioxidant enzyme level, and collagen synthesis were analyzed on tissues of guinea pigs, such as brain, liver, lung, kidney, spleen, testis, and plasma. Animals were exposed to static and ELF electric fields with intensities ranging from 0.3 kV/m to 1.9 kV/m in vertical and horizontal directions. Exposure periods were 1, 3, 5, 7, and 10 days. Electric fields were generated from a specially designed parallel plate capacitor system. The results indicate that the effects of electric fields on the tissues studied depend significantly on the type and magnitude of electric field and exposure period.

  7. Empirical and biophysical estimations of human cochlea's psychophysical tuning curve sharpness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Wei Xuan; Kim, Namkeun; Yoon, Yong-Jin

    2016-01-01

    Despite the advances in cochlear research, the estimation of auditory nerve fiber frequency tuning of human cochlea is mostly based on psychophysical measurements. Although efforts had been made to estimate human frequency tuning sharpness from various physiological measurements which are less species dependent such as the compound action potential and stimulus-frequency otoacoustic emission delay, conclusions on the relative frequency tuning sharpness compared with that of other mammals vary. We simulated the biophysical human cochlea's tuning curve based on physiological measurements of human cochlea and compared the human frequency tuning sharpness with results from empirical methods as well as experimental data of other mammalian cochleae. The compound action potential are more accurate at frequencies below 3 kHz while the stimulus frequency-otoacoustic emission delay are more accurate at frequencies above 1 kHz regions. The results from mechanical cochlear models, with support from conclusions of the other two empirical methodologies, suggest that the human frequency tuning sharpness at frequencies below 1 kHz is similar to common laboratory mammals but is exceptionally sharp at higher frequencies.

  8. Building biophysics in mid-century China: the University of Science and Technology of China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luk, Yi Lai Christine

    2015-01-01

    Biophysics has been either an independent discipline or an element of another discipline in the United States, but it has always been recognized as a stand-alone discipline in the People's Republic of China (PRC) since 1949. To inquire into this apparent divergence, this paper investigates the formational history of biophysics in China by examining the early institutional history of one of the best-known and prestigious science and technology universities in the PRC, the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC). By showing how the university and its biophysics program co-evolved with national priorities from the school's founding in 1958 to the eve of the Cultural Revolution in 1966, the purpose of this paper is to assess the development of a scientific discipline in the context of national demands and institutional politics. Specific materials for analysis include the school's admission policies, curricula, students' dissertations, and research program. To further contextualize the institutional setting of Chinese biophysics, this paper begins with a general history of proto-biophysical institutions in China during the Nationalist-Communist transitional years. This paper could be of interest to historians wanting to know more about the origin of the biophysics profession in China, and in particular how research areas that constitute biophysics changed in tandem with socio-political contingencies. PMID:25564431

  9. Diagnostic efficacy of biophysical tests and cerebral-umbilical index when assessing fetal oxygenation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Čančarević-Đajić Branka

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction. Perinatal morbidity and mortality are the ultimate indicators of antenatal care today, whose responsible task is to assess the respiratory function of the placenta, fetal growth and placental maturation in order to provide conditions for the delivery of a living and viable newborn. The diagnostic procedures of antenatal care tested within this study were the biophysical tests of cardiotocography and the fetal biophysical profile, along with the colour doppler evaluation of the cerebral-umbilical ratio. The objective of this study was to determine the most effective diagnostic procedure when assessing fetal oxygenation. Materials and Methods. The prospective study included 119 pregnant women. They all underwent cardiotocography, biophysical profile and colour doppler evaluation of the cerebral-umbilical ratio. The babies’ umbilical artery blood pH was determined in the first minute upon birth, along with the Apgar score. Results. The results were processed statistically and the most effective diagnostic procedure for the evaluation of fetal oxygenation was selected, after which the rates of perinatal morbidity and mortality were calculated. The findings revealed that cardiotocography was the most sensitive antepartal predictor of fetal acidosis, while the fetal biophysical profile proved the most specific. The rates of perinatal morbidity and of perinatal mortality were 24.37% and 1.68%, respectively. Conclusion. The findings analysis revealed a high statistical significance of both biophysical tests and the cerebral-umbilical ratio evaluation as predictors of the fetal distress syndrome. The analysis of the cerebral-umbilical ratio and biophysical tests showed that the cerebral-umbilical ratio evaluation not only was more sensitive as a parameter compared to biophysical tests but it was also more specific than cardiotocography. Cardiotocography is the most sensitive antepartal predictor of fetal acidosis, followed by the cerebral

  10. Soil functional types: surveying the biophysical dimensions of soil security

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cécillon, Lauric; Barré, Pierre

    2015-04-01

    Soil is a natural capital that can deliver key ecosystem services (ES) to humans through the realization of a series of soil processes controlling ecosystem functioning. Soil is also a diverse and endangered natural resource. A huge pedodiversity has been described at all scales, which is strongly altered by global change. The multidimensional concept soil security, encompassing biophysical, economic, social, policy and legal frameworks of soils has recently been proposed, recognizing the role of soils in global environmental sustainability challenges. The biophysical dimensions of soil security focus on the functionality of a given soil that can be viewed as the combination of its capability and its condition [1]. Indeed, all soils are not equal in term of functionality. They show different processes, provide different ES to humans and respond specifically to global change. Knowledge of soil functionality in space and time is thus a crucial step towards the achievement soil security. All soil classification systems incorporate some functional information, but soil taxonomy alone cannot fully describe the functioning, limitations, resistance and resilience of soils. Droogers and Bouma [2] introduced functional variants (phenoforms) for each soil type (genoform) so as to fit more closely to soil functionality. However, different genoforms can have the same functionality. As stated by McBratney and colleagues [1], there is a great need of an agreed methodology for defining the reference state of soil functionality. Here, we propose soil functional types (SFT) as a relevant classification system for the biophysical dimensions of soil security. Following the definition of plant functional types widely used in ecology, we define a soil functional type as "a set of soil taxons or phenoforms sharing similar processes (e.g. soil respiration), similar effects on ecosystem functioning (e.g. primary productivity) and similar responses to global change (land-use, management or

  11. Biophysical Aspects of Radiation Quality. Second Panel Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    If a living system is exposed to ionizing radiation a sequence of events follows. It starts with the absorption and dissipation of radiation energy, and continues through various physico-chemical and biochemical reactions up to the final biological end point observed. One of the aims of research in quantitative radiation biology is to understand the mechanism of this sequence of actions and to explore the differences in quality of different kinds of radiations. Because of its complexity, progress in this work requires the combined efforts of physicists, biochemists, biologists and physicians. It should, however, be done in very close collaboration rather than in following isolated lines in any one direction. For this reason, and because of the growing importance of the field for almost all applications of ionizing radiations, it was felt desirable to bring together a group of scientists engaged in research on radiation quality who represented a wide range of interests. The first panel on Biophysical Aspects of Radiation Quality, convened by the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna and held from 29 March to 2 April 1965, proved to be a successful beginning, stimulating a useful exchange of ideas and information. By this meeting, and the resulting collection of papers, published in 1966 as No. 58 of the Agency's Technical Reports Series, the importance of research on radiation quality was highlighted and the field itself became more clearly defined. The Agency held a second Panel on the same subject in Vienna from 14 to 18 April 1967. This meeting was attended by 18 experts from 10 countries, and representatives from Euratom and WHO. The Czechoslovak Socialist Republic, France, India and Poland were represented for the first time. Fourteen papers were presented and discussed in some detail. It became evident that much progress had been made since the previous meeting in certain areas such as microdosimetry, the dependence of the oxygen effect on radiation

  12. A biophysical understanding of the applications and implications of nanomaterials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geitner, Nicholas K.

    The last few decades have seen an explosion in the study and application of nanomaterials that continues to grow at a dizzying pace. Despite exciting applications in nano-enabled electronics, materials, medicine, and environmental remediation, an understanding of the interactions of these materials with natural materials and systems and the resulting implications lags severely behind. The purpose of this dissertation is to illuminate these interactions as well as develop novel environmental applications from a biophysical perspective. Following an introduction and literature review in Chapter 1, Chapters 2-4 will explore the application of dendritic polymers as novel and biocompatible oil dispersants for more environmentally conscious response to catastrophic oil spills. Chapter 2 will serve as a proof-of-concept, exploring the interactions between two model dendritic polymers and two model oil hydrocarbons. Next, the biocompatibility of these nanoscale dispersing agents is addressed in Chapter 3, using a soil amoeba as the primary model organism with emphasis on the mechanisms of any observed toxicity. Finally, in an effort to minimize cationic charge-induced cytotoxicity, the cationic terminal functional groups of poly(amidoamine) (PAMAM) dendrimers are replaced with either anionic or neutral functional groups. The resulting changes in structure and oil-dispersing function of the original and modified dendrimers are then investigated. Chapter 5 details a study of the applications and implications of graphene derivatives. Specifically, the environmental persistence of graphene and graphene oxide are assessed by studying their interactions with natural amphiphiles using synergistic experiments and molecular dynamics simulations. The application of graphene oxide for the removal of polyaromatic hydrocarbons from aquatic systems is also investigated and compared to the efficacy of PAMAM dendrimers in the same application. Finally, Chapter 6 explores the interactions

  13. Italian biophysics and SIBPA speed-up the pace towards the long and winding road of the interdisciplinary science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giacomazza, Daniela; Musio, Carlo

    2016-01-01

    This Special Issue of Biophysical Chemistry presents a selection of the contributions presented at the XXII National Congress of the Italian Society of Pure and Applied Biophysics (i.e., SIBPA, Società Italiana di Biofisica Pura ed Applicata) held on September 2014 in Palermo, Italy. Topics cover all biophysical disciplines, from molecular to cellular, to integrative biophysics giving a comprehensive view of the inter- and multi-disciplinary approach of modern biophysics. SIBPA, which turned 40 in 2013, continues to grow and attract interest.

  14. Biophysical principles predict fitness landscapes of drug resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues, João V; Bershtein, Shimon; Li, Anna; Lozovsky, Elena R; Hartl, Daniel L; Shakhnovich, Eugene I

    2016-03-15

    Fitness landscapes of drug resistance constitute powerful tools to elucidate mutational pathways of antibiotic escape. Here, we developed a predictive biophysics-based fitness landscape of trimethoprim (TMP) resistance for Escherichia coli dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR). We investigated the activity, binding, folding stability, and intracellular abundance for a complete set of combinatorial DHFR mutants made out of three key resistance mutations and extended this analysis to DHFR originated from Chlamydia muridarum and Listeria grayi We found that the acquisition of TMP resistance via decreased drug affinity is limited by a trade-off in catalytic efficiency. Protein stability is concurrently affected by the resistant mutants, which precludes a precise description of fitness from a single molecular trait. Application of the kinetic flux theory provided an accurate model to predict resistance phenotypes (IC50) quantitatively from a unique combination of the in vitro protein molecular properties. Further, we found that a controlled modulation of the GroEL/ES chaperonins and Lon protease levels affects the intracellular steady-state concentration of DHFR in a mutation-specific manner, whereas IC50 is changed proportionally, as indeed predicted by the model. This unveils a molecular rationale for the pleiotropic role of the protein quality control machinery on the evolution of antibiotic resistance, which, as we illustrate here, may drastically confound the evolutionary outcome. These results provide a comprehensive quantitative genotype-phenotype map for the essential enzyme that serves as an important target of antibiotic and anticancer therapies.

  15. An Integrated Biogeochemical and Biophysical Analysis of Bioenergy Crops

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, M.; Song, Y.; Barman, R.; Jain, A. K.

    2010-12-01

    Bioenergy crops are becoming increasingly important with growing concerns about the energy demand and climate change and the need to replace fossil fuels with carbon-neutral renewable sources of energy. The transition to a biofuel-based energy supply raises many questions such as: how and where to grow energy crops, what will be the impacts of growing large scale biofuel crops on climate system, the hydrological cycle and soil biogeochemistry. We are developing and applying an integrated system modeling framework to investigate the biophysical, physiological, and biogeochemical systems governing important processes that regulate crop growth such as water, energy and nutrient cycles. The framework has a two-big-leaf canopy scheme for photosynthesis, stomatal conductance, leaf temperature and energy fluxes. The soil/snow hydrology consists of 10 layers for soil and up to 5 layers for snow. The biogeochemistry component explicitly accounts for coupled carbon and nitrogen dynamics. The feedstocks currently considered include corn stover, Miscanthus and switchgrass. The parameters used for simulation of each crop have been calibrated using field experimental data from the US. The use of this modeling capability will be demonstrated through its applications to study the environmental effects (through changes in albedo and evapotranspiration) of biofuel production as well as the effective management practice in the United States.

  16. Unofficial Road Building in the Amazon: Socioeconomic and Biophysical Explanations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perz, Stephen G.; Caldas, Marcellus M.; Arima, Eugenio; Walker, Robert J.

    2007-01-01

    Roads have manifold social and environmental impacts, including regional development, social conflicts and habitat fragmentation. 'Road ecology' has emerged as an approach to evaluate the various ecological and hydrological impacts of roads. This article aims to complement road ecology by examining the socio-spatial processes of road building itself. Focusing on the Brazilian Amazon, a heavily-studied context due to forest fragmentation by roads, the authors consider non-state social actors who build 'unofficial roads' for the purpose of gaining access to natural resources to support livelihoods and community development. They examine four case studies of roads with distinct histories in order to explain the socio-spatial processes behind road building in terms of profit maximization, land tenure claims, co-operative and conflictive political ecologies, and constraints as well as opportunities afforded by the biophysical environment. The study cases illustrate the need for a multi-pronged theoretical approach to understanding road building, and call for more attention to the role of non-state actors in unofficial road construction.

  17. Biophysical mechanism of transient retinal phototropism in rod photoreceptors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Xiaohui; Thapa, Damber; Wang, Benquan; Gai, Shaoyan; Yao, Xincheng

    2016-03-01

    Oblique light stimulation evoked transient retinal phototropism (TRP) has been recently detected in frog and mouse retinas. High resolution microscopy of freshly isolated retinas indicated that the TRP is predominated by rod photoreceptors. Comparative confocal microscopy and optical coherence tomography (OCT) revealed that the TRP predominantly occurred from the photoreceptor outer segment (OS). However, biophysical mechanism of rod OS change is still unknown. In this study, frog retinal slices, which open a cross section of retinal photoreceptor and other functional layers, were used to test the effect of light stimulation on rod OS. Near infrared light microscopy was employed to monitor photoreceptor changes in retinal slices stimulated by a rectangular-shaped visible light flash. Rapid rod OS length change was observed after the stimulation delivery. The magnitude and direction of the rod OS change varied with the position of the rods within the stimulated area. In the center of stimulated region the length of the rod OS shrunk, while in the peripheral region the rod OS tip swung towards center region in the plane perpendicular to the incident stimulus light. Our experimental result and theoretical analysis suggest that the observed TRP may reflect unbalanced disc-shape change due to localized pigment bleaching. Further investigation is required to understand biochemical mechanism of the observed rod OS kinetics. Better study of the TRP may provide a noninvasive biomarker to enable early detection of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and other diseases that are known to produce retinal photoreceptor dysfunctions.

  18. Alteration of biophysical activity of pulmonary surfactant by aluminosilicate nanoparticles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kondej, Dorota; Sosnowski, Tomasz R

    2013-02-01

    The influence of five different types of aluminosilicate nanoparticles (NPs) on the dynamic surface activity of model pulmonary surfactant (PS) (Survanta) was studied experimentally using oscillating bubble tensiometry. Bentonite, halloysite and montmorillonite (MM) NPs, which are used as fillers of polymer composites, were characterized regarding the size distribution, morphology and surface area. Particle doses applied in the studies were estimated based on the inhalation rate and duration, taking into account the expected aerosol concentration and deposition efficiency after penetration of NPs into the alveolar region. The results indicate that aluminosilicate NPs at concentrations in the pulmonary liquid above 0.1 mg cm(-3) are capable of promoting alterations of the original dynamic biophysical activity of the PS. This effect is indicated by deviation of the minimum surface tension, stability index and the size of surface tension hysteresis. Such response is dependent on the type of NPs present in the system and is stronger when particle concentration increases. It is suggested that interactions between NPs and the PS must be related to the surfactant adsorption on the suspended particles, while in the case of surface-modified clay NPs the additional washout of surface-active components may be expected. It is speculated that observed changes in surface properties of the surfactant may be associated with undesired health effects following extensive inhalation of aluminosilicate NPs in the workplace. PMID:23363039

  19. Biophysical and biological meanings of healthspan from C. elegans cohort

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Suda, Hitoshi, E-mail: suda@tsc.u-tokai.ac.jp

    2014-09-12

    Highlights: • We focus on a third factor, noise, as well as on genetic and environmental factors. • C. elegans fed a healthy food had an extended healthspan as compared to those fed a conventional diet. • An amplification of ATP noise was clearly evident from around the onset of biodemographic aging. • The extension of timing of noise amplification may contribute to effectively extending the healthspan. • The same mechanism of the mean lifespan extension in C. elegans may be realized in humans. - Abstract: Lifespan among individuals ranges widely in organisms from yeast to mammals, even in an isogenic cohort born in a nearly uniform environment. Needless to say, genetic and environmental factors are essential for aging and lifespan, but in addition, a third factor or the existence of a stochastic element must be reflected in aging and lifespan. An essential point is that lifespan or aging is an unpredictable phenomenon. The present study focuses on elucidating the biophysical and biological meanings of healthspan that latently indwells a stochastic nature. To perform this purpose, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans served as a model animal. C. elegans fed a healthy food had an extended healthspan as compared to those fed a conventional diet. Then, utilizing this phenomenon, we clarified a mechanism of healthspan extension by measuring the single-worm ATP and estimating the ATP noise (or the variability of the ATP content) among individual worms and by quantitatively analyzing biodemographic data with the lifespan equation that was derived from a fluctuation theory.

  20. Biophysical induction of vascular smooth muscle cell podosomes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Na Young Kim

    Full Text Available Vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC migration and matrix degradation occurs with intimal hyperplasia associated with atherosclerosis, vascular injury, and restenosis. One proposed mechanism by which VSMCs degrade matrix is through the use of podosomes, transient actin-based structures that are thought to play a role in extracellular matrix degradation by creating localized sites of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP secretion. To date, podosomes in VSMCs have largely been studied by stimulating cells with phorbol esters, such as phorbol 12,13-dibutyrate (PDBu, however little is known about the physiological cues that drive podosome formation. We present the first evidence that physiological, physical stimuli mimicking cues present within the microenvironment of diseased arteries can induce podosome formation in VSMCs. Both microtopographical cues and imposed pressure mimicking stage II hypertension induce podosome formation in A7R5 rat aortic smooth muscle cells. Moreover, wounding using a scratch assay induces podosomes at the leading edge of VSMCs. Notably the effect of each of these biophysical stimuli on podosome stimulation can be inhibited using a Src inhibitor. Together, these data indicate that physical cues can induce podosome formation in VSMCs.

  1. Biophysical principles predict fitness landscapes of drug resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues, João V; Bershtein, Shimon; Li, Anna; Lozovsky, Elena R; Hartl, Daniel L; Shakhnovich, Eugene I

    2016-03-15

    Fitness landscapes of drug resistance constitute powerful tools to elucidate mutational pathways of antibiotic escape. Here, we developed a predictive biophysics-based fitness landscape of trimethoprim (TMP) resistance for Escherichia coli dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR). We investigated the activity, binding, folding stability, and intracellular abundance for a complete set of combinatorial DHFR mutants made out of three key resistance mutations and extended this analysis to DHFR originated from Chlamydia muridarum and Listeria grayi We found that the acquisition of TMP resistance via decreased drug affinity is limited by a trade-off in catalytic efficiency. Protein stability is concurrently affected by the resistant mutants, which precludes a precise description of fitness from a single molecular trait. Application of the kinetic flux theory provided an accurate model to predict resistance phenotypes (IC50) quantitatively from a unique combination of the in vitro protein molecular properties. Further, we found that a controlled modulation of the GroEL/ES chaperonins and Lon protease levels affects the intracellular steady-state concentration of DHFR in a mutation-specific manner, whereas IC50 is changed proportionally, as indeed predicted by the model. This unveils a molecular rationale for the pleiotropic role of the protein quality control machinery on the evolution of antibiotic resistance, which, as we illustrate here, may drastically confound the evolutionary outcome. These results provide a comprehensive quantitative genotype-phenotype map for the essential enzyme that serves as an important target of antibiotic and anticancer therapies. PMID:26929328

  2. The biophysical bases of will-less behaviours

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose Luis ePerez Velazquez

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Are there distinctions at the neurophysiological level that correlate with voluntary and involuntary actions? Whereas the wide variety of involuntary behaviours (and here mostly the deviant or pathological ones will be considered will necessarily be represented at some biophysical level in nervous system activity, for after all those cellular activity patterns manifest themselves as behaviours and thus there will be a multiplicity of them, there could be some general tendencies to be discerned amongst that assortment. Collecting observations derived from neurophysiological activity associated with several pathological conditions characterised by presenting will-less actions such as Parkinson’s disease, seizures, alien hand syndrome and tics, it is proposed that a general neurophysiologic tendency of brain activity that correlates with involuntary actions is higher than normal synchrony in specific brain cell networks, depending upon the behaviour in question. Wilful, considered normal behaviour, depends on precise coordination of the collective activity in cell ensembles that may be lost, or diminished, when there are tendencies towards more than normal or aberrant synchronization of cellular activity. Hence, rapid fluctuations in synchrony is associated with normal actions and cognition while less variability in brain recordings particularly with regards to synchronization could be a signature of unconscious and deviant behaviours in general.

  3. Ecosystem biophysical memory in the southwestern North America climate system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    To elucidate the potential role of vegetation to act as a memory source in the southwestern North America climate system, we explore correlation structures of remotely sensed vegetation dynamics with precipitation, temperature and teleconnection indices over 1982–2006 for six ecoregions. We found that lagged correlations between vegetation dynamics and climate variables are modulated by the dominance of monsoonal or Mediterranean regimes and ecosystem-specific physiological processes. Subtropical and tropical ecosystems exhibit a one month lag positive correlation with precipitation, a zero- to one-month lag negative correlation with temperature, and modest negative effects of sea surface temperature (SST). Mountain forests have a zero month lag negative correlation with precipitation, a zero–one month lag negative correlation with temperature, and no significant correlation with SSTs. Deserts show a strong one–four month lag positive correlation with precipitation, a low zero–two month lag negative correlation with temperature, and a high four–eight month lag positive correlation with SSTs. The ecoregion-specific biophysical memories identified offer an opportunity to improve the predictability of land–atmosphere interactions and vegetation feedbacks onto climate. (letter)

  4. A Biophysical Neural Model To Describe Spatial Visual Attention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hugues, Etienne; José, Jorge V.

    2008-02-01

    Visual scenes have enormous spatial and temporal information that are transduced into neural spike trains. Psychophysical experiments indicate that only a small portion of a spatial image is consciously accessible. Electrophysiological experiments in behaving monkeys have revealed a number of modulations of the neural activity in special visual area known as V4, when the animal is paying attention directly towards a particular stimulus location. The nature of the attentional input to V4, however, remains unknown as well as to the mechanisms responsible for these modulations. We use a biophysical neural network model of V4 to address these issues. We first constrain our model to reproduce the experimental results obtained for different external stimulus configurations and without paying attention. To reproduce the known neuronal response variability, we found that the neurons should receive about equal, or balanced, levels of excitatory and inhibitory inputs and whose levels are high as they are in in vivo conditions. Next we consider attentional inputs that can induce and reproduce the observed spiking modulations. We also elucidate the role played by the neural network to generate these modulations.

  5. Biophysical and biological meanings of healthspan from C. elegans cohort

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: • We focus on a third factor, noise, as well as on genetic and environmental factors. • C. elegans fed a healthy food had an extended healthspan as compared to those fed a conventional diet. • An amplification of ATP noise was clearly evident from around the onset of biodemographic aging. • The extension of timing of noise amplification may contribute to effectively extending the healthspan. • The same mechanism of the mean lifespan extension in C. elegans may be realized in humans. - Abstract: Lifespan among individuals ranges widely in organisms from yeast to mammals, even in an isogenic cohort born in a nearly uniform environment. Needless to say, genetic and environmental factors are essential for aging and lifespan, but in addition, a third factor or the existence of a stochastic element must be reflected in aging and lifespan. An essential point is that lifespan or aging is an unpredictable phenomenon. The present study focuses on elucidating the biophysical and biological meanings of healthspan that latently indwells a stochastic nature. To perform this purpose, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans served as a model animal. C. elegans fed a healthy food had an extended healthspan as compared to those fed a conventional diet. Then, utilizing this phenomenon, we clarified a mechanism of healthspan extension by measuring the single-worm ATP and estimating the ATP noise (or the variability of the ATP content) among individual worms and by quantitatively analyzing biodemographic data with the lifespan equation that was derived from a fluctuation theory

  6. Symposium on Biophysics and Physiology of Biological Transport

    CERN Document Server

    Capraro, V; Porter, K; Robertson, J

    1967-01-01

    The study of cell membranes began to attract increasing interest before the turn of the present century with the observations of 0 verton. Since that time many investigators have become interested in the broad problem of structure and function of the membrane and today we find ourselVes at a stage in which several branches of research, particularly physical chemistry, biochemistry, biophysics, physiology and pharmacology have come together, leading to the possibility of obtaining a better perspective of the overall problems. The purpose of this Symposium was to assemble in an orderly sequence representations of the knowledge of membranes achieved to date in the areas of the various disciplines. It was thought that to bring together many points of view on a problem should allow the conferees to see better what had been accomplished, what has been overlooked and what needs further development. It is to be hoped that efforts of this type have and will fulfill the desired purpose. This volume contains the majorit...

  7. Biophysical characterization of gold nanoparticles-loaded liposomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mady, Mohsen Mahmoud; Fathy, Mohamed Mahmoud; Youssef, Tareq; Khalil, Wafaa Mohamed

    2012-10-01

    Gold nanoparticles were prepared and loaded into the bilayer of dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC) liposomes, named as gold-loaded liposomes. Biophysical characterization of gold-loaded liposomes was studied by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy as well as turbidity and rheological measurements. FTIR measurements showed that gold nanoparticles made significant changes in the frequency of the CH(2) stretching bands, revealing that gold nanoparticles increased the number of gauche conformers and create a conformational change within the acyl chains of phospholipids. The transmission electron micrographs (TEM) revealed that gold nanoparticles were loaded in the liposomal bilayer. The zeta potential of DPPC liposomes had a more negative value after incorporating of Au NPs into liposomal membranes. Turbidity studies revealed that the loading of gold nanoparticles into DPPC liposomes results in shifting the temperature of the main phase transition to a lower value. The membrane fluidity of DPPC bilayer was increased by loading the gold nanoparticles as shown from rheological measurements. Knowledge gained in this study may open the door to pursuing liposomes as a viable strategy for Au NPs delivery in many diagnostic and therapeutic applications. PMID:22027546

  8. Biophysical interactions between plant and soil: theory and practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Ploeg, Martine

    2016-04-01

    Vegetation plays an essential role in the hydrological cycle, as it regulates the water flux to the atmosphere through evapotranspiration, while it is dependent on adequate water supply. Vegetation shapes the land surface by changing infiltration characteristics as a result of root growth, and controls soil moisture storage, which in turn affect runoff characteristics and groundwater recharge. Vegetation and the underlying geology are in constant interaction, wherein water plays a key role. The resilience of the coupled vegetation-soil system critically depends on its sensitivity to environmental changes. Models are a useful tool to explore interaction and feedbacks between vegetation, soil and landscape. Plants respond biochemically to their environment, while the models used for hydrology are often based on physical interactions. Gene-expression and genotype adaptation may complicate our modelling efforts in for example climate change impacts. Combination of new techniques to assess soil and plant properties facilitates assessment of biophysical interactions. This poster will review these techniques and compare the obtained insights of soil-plant relationships with the current modeling approaches.

  9. Universal buffers for use in biochemistry and biophysical experiments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dewey Brooke

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The use of buffers that mimic biological solutions is a foundation of biochemical and biophysical studies. However, buffering agents have both specific and nonspecific interactions with proteins. Buffer molecules can induce changes in conformational equilibria, dynamic behavior, and catalytic properties merely by their presence in solution. This effect is of concern because many of the standard experiments used to investigate protein structure and function involve changing solution conditions such as pH and/or temperature. In experiments in which pH is varied, it is common practice to switch buffering agents so that the pH is within the working range of the weak acid and conjugate base. If multiple buffers are used, it is not always possible to decouple buffer induced change from pH or temperature induced change. We have developed a series of mixed biological buffers for protein analysis that can be used across a broad pH range, are compatible with biologically relevant metal ions, and avoid complications that may arise from changing the small molecule composition of buffers when pH is used as an experimental variable.

  10. Evolutionary and biophysical relationships among the papillomavirus E2 proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blakaj, Dukagjin M; Fernandez-Fuentes, Narcis; Chen, Zigui; Hegde, Rashmi; Fiser, Andras; Burk, Robert D; Brenowitz, Michael

    2009-01-01

    Infection by human papillomavirus (HPV) may result in clinical conditions ranging from benign warts to invasive cancer. The HPV E2 protein represses oncoprotein transcription and is required for viral replication. HPV E2 binds to palindromic DNA sequences of highly conserved four base pair sequences flanking an identical length variable 'spacer'. E2 proteins directly contact the conserved but not the spacer DNA. Variation in naturally occurring spacer sequences results in differential protein affinity that is dependent on their sensitivity to the spacer DNA's unique conformational and/or dynamic properties. This article explores the biophysical character of this core viral protein with the goal of identifying characteristics that associated with risk of virally caused malignancy. The amino acid sequence, 3d structure and electrostatic features of the E2 protein DNA binding domain are highly conserved; specific interactions with DNA binding sites have also been conserved. In contrast, the E2 protein's transactivation domain does not have extensive surfaces of highly conserved residues. Rather, regions of high conservation are localized to small surface patches. Implications to cancer biology are discussed. PMID:19273107

  11. Biophysical constraints on gross primary production by the terrestrial biosphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Wang

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Persistent divergences among the predictions of complex carbon cycle models include differences in the sign as well as the magnitude of the response of global terrestrial primary production to climate change. This and other problems with current models indicate an urgent need to re-assess the principles underlying the environmental controls of primary production. The global patterns of annual and maximum monthly terrestrial gross primary production (GPP by C3 plants are explored here using a simple first-principles model based on the light-use efficiency formalism and the Farquhar model for C3 photosynthesis. The model is driven by incident photosynthetically active radiation (PAR and remotely sensed green vegetation cover, with additional constraints imposed by low-temperature inhibition and CO2 limitation. The ratio of leaf-internal to ambient CO2 concentration in the model responds to growing-season mean temperature, atmospheric dryness (indexed by the cumulative water deficit, ΔE and elevation, based on optimality theory. The greatest annual GPP is predicted for tropical moist forests, but the maximum (summer monthly GPP can be as high or higher in boreal or temperate forests. These findings are supported by a new analysis of CO2 flux measurements. The explanation is simply based on the seasonal and latitudinal distribution of PAR combined with the physiology of photosynthesis. By successively imposing biophysical constraints, it is shown that partial vegetation cover – driven primarily by water shortage – represents the largest constraint on global GPP.

  12. Energy efficient neural stimulation: coupling circuit design and membrane biophysics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas J Foutz

    Full Text Available The delivery of therapeutic levels of electrical current to neural tissue is a well-established treatment for numerous indications such as Parkinson's disease and chronic pain. While the neuromodulation medical device industry has experienced steady clinical growth over the last two decades, much of the core technology underlying implanted pulse generators remain unchanged. In this study we propose some new methods for achieving increased energy-efficiency during neural stimulation. The first method exploits the biophysical features of excitable tissue through the use of a centered-triangular stimulation waveform. Neural activation with this waveform is achieved with a statistically significant reduction in energy compared to traditional rectangular waveforms. The second method demonstrates energy savings that could be achieved by advanced circuitry design. We show that the traditional practice of using a fixed compliance voltage for constant-current stimulation results in substantial energy loss. A portion of this energy can be recuperated by adjusting the compliance voltage to real-time requirements. Lastly, we demonstrate the potential impact of axon fiber diameter on defining the energy-optimal pulse-width for stimulation. When designing implantable pulse generators for energy efficiency, we propose that the future combination of a variable compliance system, a centered-triangular stimulus waveform, and an axon diameter specific stimulation pulse-width has great potential to reduce energy consumption and prolong battery life in neuromodulation devices.

  13. Mesenchymal morphogenesis of embryonic stem cells dynamically modulates the biophysical microtissue niche

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kinney, Melissa A.; Saeed, Rabbia; McDevitt, Todd C.

    2014-01-01

    Stem cell fate and function are dynamically modulated by the interdependent relationships between biochemical and biophysical signals constituting the local 3D microenvironment. While approaches to recapitulate the stem cell niche have been explored for directing stem cell differentiation, a quantitative relationship between embryonic stem cell (ESC) morphogenesis and intrinsic biophysical cues within three-dimensional microtissues has not been established. In this study, we demonstrate that mesenchymal embryonic microtissues induced by BMP4 exhibited increased stiffness and viscosity accompanying differentiation, with cytoskeletal tension significantly contributing to multicellular stiffness. Perturbation of the cytoskeleton during ESC differentiation led to modulation of the biomechanical and gene expression profiles, with the resulting cell phenotype and biophysical properties being highly correlated by multivariate analyses. Together, this study elucidates the dynamics of biophysical and biochemical signatures within embryonic microenvironments, with broad implications for monitoring tissue dynamics, modeling pathophysiological and embryonic morphogenesis and directing stem cell patterning and differentiation. PMID:24598818

  14. Dlk1 Promotes a Fast Motor Neuron Biophysical Signature Required for Peak Force Execution

    OpenAIRE

    Muller, D.; Cherukuri, P; Henningfeld, K.; Poh, C. H.; Wittler, L; Grote, P.; Schluter, O.; Schmidt, J.; Laborda, J.; Bauer, S R; Brownstone, R M; Marquardt, T

    2014-01-01

    Motor neurons, which relay neural commands to drive skeletal muscle movements, encompass types ranging from "slow" to "fast," whose biophysical properties govern the timing, gradation, and amplitude of muscle force. Here we identify the noncanonical Notch ligand Delta-like homolog 1 (Dlk1) as a determinant of motor neuron functional diversification. Dlk1, expressed by ~30% of motor neurons, is necessary and sufficient to promote a fast biophysical signature in the mouse and chick. Dlk1 suppre...

  15. Mesenchymal morphogenesis of embryonic stem cells dynamically modulates the biophysical microtissue niche

    OpenAIRE

    Kinney, Melissa A.; Rabbia Saeed; McDevitt, Todd C.

    2014-01-01

    Stem cell fate and function are dynamically modulated by the interdependent relationships between biochemical and biophysical signals constituting the local 3D microenvironment. While approaches to recapitulate the stem cell niche have been explored for directing stem cell differentiation, a quantitative relationship between embryonic stem cell (ESC) morphogenesis and intrinsic biophysical cues within three-dimensional microtissues has not been established. In this study, we demonstrate that ...

  16. Extraction of Mangrove Biophysical Parameters Using Airborne LiDAR

    OpenAIRE

    Poonsak Miphokasap; Phisan Santitamnont; Kiyoshi Honda; Wasinee Wannasiri; Masahiko Nagai

    2013-01-01

    Tree parameter determinations using airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) have been conducted in many forest types, including coniferous, boreal, and deciduous. However, there are only a few scientific articles discussing the application of LiDAR to mangrove biophysical parameter extraction at an individual tree level. The main objective of this study was to investigate the potential of using LiDAR data to estimate the biophysical parameters of mangrove trees at an individual tree scal...

  17. The problem of the competitiveness of nuclear energy : a biophysical explanation

    OpenAIRE

    Diaz Maurin, François

    2011-01-01

    In this study I try to explain the systemic problem of the low economic competitiveness of nuclear energy for the production of electricity by carrying out a biophysical analysis of its production process. Given the fact that neither econometric approaches nor onedimensional methods of energy analyses are effective, I introduce the concept of biophysical explanation as a quantitative analysis capable of handling the inherent ambiguity associated with the concept of energy. In particular, the...

  18. Diagnostic efficacy of biophysical tests and cerebral-umbilical index when assessing fetal oxygenation

    OpenAIRE

    Čančarević-Đajić Branka; Vilendečić Rade

    2013-01-01

    Introduction. Perinatal morbidity and mortality are the ultimate indicators of antenatal care today, whose responsible task is to assess the respiratory function of the placenta, fetal growth and placental maturation in order to provide conditions for the delivery of a living and viable newborn. The diagnostic procedures of antenatal care tested within this study were the biophysical tests of cardiotocography and the fetal biophysical profile, along with the colour doppler evaluation of...

  19. Biophysical characterization of G-protein coupled receptor-peptide ligand binding

    OpenAIRE

    Langelaan, David N.; Ngweniform, Pascaline; Rainey, Jan K.

    2011-01-01

    G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) are ubiquitous membrane proteins allowing intracellular response to extracellular factors that range from photons of light to small molecules to proteins. Despite extensive exploitation of GRCRs as therapeutic targets, biophysical characterization of GPCR-ligand interactions remains challenging. In this minireview, we focus on techniques which have been successfully employed for structural and biophysical characterization of peptide ligands binding to their...

  20. EDITORIAL: Focus on Heavy Ions in Biophysics and Medical Physics FOCUS ON HEAVY IONS IN BIOPHYSICS AND MEDICAL PHYSICS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durante, Marco

    2008-07-01

    Interest in energetic heavy ions is rapidly increasing in the field of biomedicine. Heavy ions are normally excluded from radiation protection, because they are not normally experienced by humans on Earth. However, knowledge of heavy ion biophysics is necessary in two fields: charged particle cancer therapy (hadrontherapy), and radiation protection in space missions. The possibility to cure tumours using accelerated heavy charged particles was first tested in Berkeley in the sixties, but results were not satisfactory. However, about 15 years ago therapy with carbon ions was resumed first in Japan and then in Europe. Heavy ions are preferable to photons for both physical and biological characteristics: the Bragg peak and limited lateral diffusion ensure a conformal dose distribution, while the high relative biological effectiveness and low oxygen enhancement ration in the Bragg peak region make the beam very effective in treating radioresistant and hypoxic tumours. Recent results coming from the National Institute of Radiological Sciences in Chiba (see the paper by Dr Tsujii and co-workers in this issue) and GSI (Germany) provide strong clinical evidence that heavy ions are indeed an extremely effective weapon in the fight against cancer. However, more research is needed in the field, especially on optimization of the treatment planning and risk of late effects in normal tissue, including secondary cancers. On the other hand, high-energy heavy ions are present in galactic cosmic radiation and, although they are rare as compared to protons, they give a major contribution in terms of equivalent dose to the crews of manned space exploratory-class missions. Exploration of the Solar System is now the main goal of the space program, and the risk caused by exposure to galactic cosmic radiation is considered a serious hindrance toward this goal, because of the high uncertainty on late effects of energetic heavy nuclei, and the lack of effective countermeasures. Risks

  1. Biophysical impacts of climate-smart agriculture in the Midwest United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bagley, Justin E; Miller, Jesse; Bernacchi, Carl J

    2015-09-01

    The potential impacts of climate change in the Midwest United States present unprecedented challenges to regional agriculture. In response to these challenges, a variety of climate-smart agricultural methodologies have been proposed to retain or improve crop yields, reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions, retain soil quality and increase climate resilience of agricultural systems. One component that is commonly neglected when assessing the environmental impacts of climate-smart agriculture is the biophysical impacts, where changes in ecosystem fluxes and storage of moisture and energy lead to perturbations in local climate and water availability. Using a combination of observational data and an agroecosystem model, a series of climate-smart agricultural scenarios were assessed to determine the biophysical impacts these techniques have in the Midwest United States. The first scenario extended the growing season for existing crops using future temperature and CO2 concentrations. The second scenario examined the biophysical impacts of no-till agriculture and the impacts of annually retaining crop debris. Finally, the third scenario evaluated the potential impacts that the adoption of perennial cultivars had on biophysical quantities. Each of these scenarios was found to have significant biophysical impacts. However, the timing and magnitude of the biophysical impacts differed between scenarios. PMID:25393245

  2. Microbial Life in Soil - Linking Biophysical Models with Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Or, Dani; Tecon, Robin; Ebrahimi, Ali; Kleyer, Hannah; Ilie, Olga; Wang, Gang

    2015-04-01

    Microbial life in soil occurs within fragmented aquatic habitats formed in complex pore spaces where motility is restricted to short hydration windows (e.g., following rainfall). The limited range of self-dispersion and physical confinement promote spatial association among trophically interdepended microbial species. Competition and preferences for different nutrient resources and byproducts and their diffusion require high level of spatial organization to sustain the functioning of multispecies communities. We report mechanistic modeling studies of competing multispecies microbial communities grown on hydrated surfaces and within artificial soil aggregates (represented by 3-D pore network). Results show how trophic dependencies and cell-level interactions within patchy diffusion fields promote spatial self-organization of motile microbial cells. The spontaneously forming patterns of segregated, yet coexisting species were robust to spatial heterogeneities and to temporal perturbations (hydration dynamics), and respond primarily to the type of trophic dependencies. Such spatially self-organized consortia may reflect ecological templates that optimize substrate utilization and could form the basic architecture for more permanent surface-attached microbial colonies. Hydration dynamics affect structure and spatial arrangement of aerobic and anaerobic microbial communities and their biogeochemical functions. Experiments with well-characterized artificial soil microbial assemblies grown on porous surfaces provide access to community dynamics during wetting and drying cycles detected through genetic fingerprinting. Experiments for visual observations of spatial associations of tagged bacterial species with known trophic dependencies on model porous surfaces are underway. Biophysical modeling provide a means for predicting hydration-mediated critical separation distances for activation of spatial self-organization. The study provides new modeling and observational tools

  3. The Colorado Plateau II: biophysical, socioeconomic, and cultural research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattson, David J.; van Riper, Charles

    2005-01-01

    The publication of The Colorado Plateau: Cultural, Biological, and Physical Research in 2004 marked a timely summation of current research in the Four Corners states. This new volume, derived from the seventh Biennial Conference on the Colorado Plateau in 2003, complements the previous book by focusing on the integration of science into resource management issues. The 32 chapters range in content from measuring human impacts on cultural resources, through grazing and the wildland-urban interface issues, to parameters of climate change on the Plateau. The book also introduces economic perspectives by considering shifting patterns and regional disparities in the Colorado Plateau economy. A series of chapters on mountain lions explores the human-wildland interface. These chapters deal with the entire spectrum of challenges associated with managing this large mammal species in Arizona and on the Colorado Plateau, conveying a wealth of timely information of interest to wildlife managers and enthusiasts. Another provocative set of chapters on biophysical resources explores the management of forest restoration, from the micro scale all the way up to large-scale GIS analyses of ponderosa pine ecosystems on the Colorado Plateau. Given recent concerns for forest health in the wake of fires, severe drought, and bark-beetle infestation, these chapters will prove enlightening for forest service, park service, and land management professionals at both the federal and state level, as well as general readers interested in how forest management practices will ultimately affect their recreation activities. With broad coverage that touches on topics as diverse as movement patterns of rattlesnakes, calculating watersheds, and rescuing looted rockshelters, this volume stands as a compendium of cutting-edge research on the Colorado Plateau that offers a wealth of insights for many scholars.

  4. Structural features underlying raloxifene's biophysical interaction with bone matrix.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bivi, Nicoletta; Hu, Haitao; Chavali, Balagopalakrishna; Chalmers, Michael J; Reutter, Christopher T; Durst, Gregory L; Riley, Anna; Sato, Masahiko; Allen, Matthew R; Burr, David D; Dodge, Jeffrey A

    2016-02-15

    Raloxifene, a selective estrogen receptor modulator (SERM), reduces fracture risk at least in part by improving the mechanical properties of bone in a cell- and estrogen receptor-independent manner. In this study, we determined that raloxifene directly interacts with the bone tissue. Through the use of multiple and complementary biophysical techniques including nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), we show that raloxifene interacts specifically with the organic component or the organic/mineral composite, and not with hydroxyapatite. Structure-activity studies reveal that the basic side chain of raloxifene is an instrumental determinant in the interaction with bone. Thus, truncation of portions of the side chain reduces bone binding and also diminishes the increase in mechanical properties. Our results support a model wherein the piperidine interacts with bone matrix through electrostatic interactions with the piperidine nitrogen and through hydrophobic interactions (van der Waals) with the aliphatic groups in the side chain and the benzothiophene core. Furthermore, in silico prediction of the potential binding sites on the surface of collagen revealed the presence of a groove with sufficient space to accommodate raloxifene analogs. The hydroxyl groups on the benzothiophene nucleus, which are necessary for binding of SERMs to the estrogen receptor, are not required for binding to the bone surface, but mediate a more robust binding of the compound to the bone powder. In conclusion, we report herein a novel property of raloxifene analogs that allows them to interact with the bone tissue through potential contacts with the organic matrix and in particular collagen. PMID:26795112

  5. Biophysical Assessment and Predicted Thermophysiologic Effects of Body Armor.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam W Potter

    Full Text Available Military personnel are often required to wear ballistic protection in order to defend against enemies. However, this added protection increases mass carried and imposes additional thermal burden on the individual. Body armor (BA is known to reduce combat casualties, but the effects of BA mass and insulation on the physical performance of soldiers are less well documented. Until recently, the emphasis has been increasing personal protection, with little consideration of the adverse impacts on human performance.The purpose of this work was to use sweating thermal manikin and mathematical modeling techniques to quantify the tradeoff between increased BA protection, the accompanying mass, and thermal effects on human performance.Using a sweating thermal manikin, total insulation (IT, clo and vapor permeability indexes (im were measured for a baseline clothing ensemble with and without one of seven increasingly protective U.S. Army BA configurations. Using mathematical modeling, predictions were made of thermal impact on humans wearing each configuration while working in hot/dry (desert, hot/humid (jungle, and temperate environmental conditions.In nearly still air (0.4 m/s, IT ranged from 1.57 to 1.63 clo and im from 0.35 to 0.42 for the seven BA conditions, compared to IT and im values of 1.37 clo and 0.45 respectively, for the baseline condition (no BA.Biophysical assessments and predictive modeling show a quantifiable relationship exists among increased protection and increased thermal burden and decreased work capacity. This approach enables quantitative analysis of the tradeoffs between ballistic protection, thermal-work strain, and physical work performance.

  6. Biophysics of Magnetic Orientation: Radical Pairs, Biogenic Magnetite, or both?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirschvink, Joe

    2011-03-01

    Two major biophysical mechanisms for magnetoreception in terrestrial animals, one based on biogenic magnetite and another on radical-pair biochemical reactions, have been the subject of experiment and debate for the past 30 years. The magnetite hypothesis has stood the test of time: biogenic magnetite is synthesized biochemically in Bacteria, Protists, and numerous Animal phyla, as well as in some plants. Chains of single-domain crystals have been detected by clean-lab based SQUID magnetometry in animal tissues in all major phyla, followed by high-resolution TEM in selected model organisms, as well as by electrophysiological studies demonstrating the role of the ophthalmic branch of the trigeminal nerve in the magnetoreceptive process. Pulse-remagnetization - configured to uniquely flip the polarity of single-domain ferromagnets - has dramatic effects on the behavior of many birds, honeybees, mole rats, turtles, and bats, to cite a growing list. Magnetite-containing cells in the vicinity of these neurons in fish are now the subject of intense study by our consortium. The existence of a specialized class of magnetite-containing magnetoreceptor cells in animal tissues is no longer controversial. In contrast, less success has been achieved in gaining experimental support across a range of taxa for the radical-pair hypothesis. Although this mechanism was proposed to explain an early observation that birds would not respond to complete inversion of the magnetic vector, many organisms (even some birds) do indeed respond to the field polarity. We also note that few, if any, of these critical experiments have been done using fully double-blind methods. This is joint work with: M. M. Walker (University of Auckland, New Zealand) and M. Winklhofer (LMU Munich, Germany).

  7. Electron paramagnetic resonance biophysical radiation dosimetry with tooth enamel

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This thesis deals with the advancements made in the field of Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) for biophysical dosimetry with tooth enamel for accident, emergency, and retrospective radiation dose reconstruction. A methodology has been developed to measure retrospective radiation exposures in human tooth enamel. This entails novel sample preparation procedures with minimum mechanical treatment to reduce the preparation induced uncertainties, establish optimum measurement conditions inside the EPR cavity, post-process the measured spectrum with functional simulation of dosimetric and other interfering signals, and reconstruct dose. By using this technique, retrospective gamma exposures as low as 80±30 mGy have been successfully deciphered. The notion of dose modifier was introduced in EPR biodosimetry for low dose measurements. It has been demonstrated that by using the modified zero added dose (MZAD) technique for low radiation exposures, doses in 100 mGy ranges can be easily reconstructed in teeth that were previously thought useless for EPR dosimetry. Also, the use of a dose modifier makes robust dose reconstruction possible for higher radiation exposures. The EPR dosimetry technique was also developed for tooth samples extracted from rodents, which represent small tooth sizing. EPR doses in the molars, extracted from the mice irradiated with whole body exposures, were reassessed and shown to be correct within the experimental uncertainty. The sensitivity of human tooth enamel for neutron irradiation, obtained from the 3 MV McMaster K.N. Van de Graaff accelerator, was also studied. For the first time this work has shown that the neutron sensitivity of the tooth enamel is approximately 1/10th of the equivalent gamma sensitivity. Parametric studies for neutron dose rate and neutron energy within the available range of the accelerator, showed no impact on the sensitivity of the tooth enamel. Therefore, tooth enamel can be used as a dosimeter for both neutrons

  8. Untreatable Pain Resulting from Abdominal Cancer: New Hope from Biophysics?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marineo G

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available CONTEXT: Visceral pain characterizing pancreatic cancer is the most difficult symptom of the disease to control and can significantly impair the quality of life which remains and increase the demand for euthanasia. AIM: To investigate a possible new method based on biophysical principles (scrambler therapy to be used in the effective treatment of drug-resistant oncological pain of the visceral/neuropathic type. SETTING: Eleven terminal cancer patients (3 pancreas, 4 colon, 4 gastric suffering from elevated drug resistant visceral pain. DESIGN: The trial program was related to the first ten treatment sessions. Subsequently, each patient continued to receive treatment until death. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Pain measures were performed using the visual analogue scale before and after each treatment session and accompanied by diary recordings of the duration of analgesia in the hours following each single application. Any variation in pain-killing drug consumption was also recorded. RESULTS: All patients reacted positively to the treatment throughout the whole reference period. Pain intensity showed a significant decrease (P less than 0.001, accompanied by a gradual rise both in the pain threshold and the duration of analgesia. Nine (81.8% of the patients suspended pain-killers within the first 5 applications, while the remaining two (18.2% considerably reduced the dosage taken prior to scrambler therapy. No undesirable side effects were observed. Compliance was found to be optimal. CONCLUSIONS: The preliminary results obtained using scrambler therapy are extremely encouraging, both in terms of enhanced pain control after each treatment session and in view of the possible maintenance of effectiveness over time.

  9. Biophysical fitness landscapes for transcription factor binding sites.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allan Haldane

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Phenotypic states and evolutionary trajectories available to cell populations are ultimately dictated by complex interactions among DNA, RNA, proteins, and other molecular species. Here we study how evolution of gene regulation in a single-cell eukaryote S. cerevisiae is affected by interactions between transcription factors (TFs and their cognate DNA sites. Our study is informed by a comprehensive collection of genomic binding sites and high-throughput in vitro measurements of TF-DNA binding interactions. Using an evolutionary model for monomorphic populations evolving on a fitness landscape, we infer fitness as a function of TF-DNA binding to show that the shape of the inferred fitness functions is in broad agreement with a simple functional form inspired by a thermodynamic model of two-state TF-DNA binding. However, the effective parameters of the model are not always consistent with physical values, indicating selection pressures beyond the biophysical constraints imposed by TF-DNA interactions. We find little statistical support for the fitness landscape in which each position in the binding site evolves independently, indicating that epistasis is common in the evolution of gene regulation. Finally, by correlating TF-DNA binding energies with biological properties of the sites or the genes they regulate, we are able to rule out several scenarios of site-specific selection, under which binding sites of the same TF would experience different selection pressures depending on their position in the genome. These findings support the existence of universal fitness landscapes which shape evolution of all sites for a given TF, and whose properties are determined in part by the physics of protein-DNA interactions.

  10. Analytical Laboratories

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — NETL’s analytical laboratories in Pittsburgh, PA, and Albany, OR, give researchers access to the equipment they need to thoroughly study the properties of materials...

  11. Computational Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — This laboratory contains a number of commercial off-the-shelf and in-house software packages allowing for both statistical analysis as well as mathematical modeling...

  12. National laboratories

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The foundation of a 'National Laboratory' which would support a Research center in synchrotron radiation applications is proposed. The essential features of such a laboratory differing of others centers in Brazil are presented. (L.C.)

  13. Laboratory Tests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laboratory tests check a sample of your blood, urine, or body tissues. A technician or your doctor ... compare your results to results from previous tests. Laboratory tests are often part of a routine checkup ...

  14. Biophysics and bioinformatics of transcription regulation in bacteria and bacteriophages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Djordjevic, Marko

    2005-11-01

    Due to rapid accumulation of biological data, bioinformatics has become a very important branch of biological research. In this thesis, we develop novel bioinformatic approaches and aid design of biological experiments by using ideas and methods from statistical physics. Identification of transcription factor binding sites within the regulatory segments of genomic DNA is an important step towards understanding of the regulatory circuits that control expression of genes. We propose a novel, biophysics based algorithm, for the supervised detection of transcription factor (TF) binding sites. The method classifies potential binding sites by explicitly estimating the sequence-specific binding energy and the chemical potential of a given TF. In contrast with the widely used information theory based weight matrix method, our approach correctly incorporates saturation in the transcription factor/DNA binding probability. This results in a significant reduction in the number of expected false positives, and in the explicit appearance---and determination---of a binding threshold. The new method was used to identify likely genomic binding sites for the Escherichia coli TFs, and to examine the relationship between TF binding specificity and degree of pleiotropy (number of regulatory targets). We next address how parameters of protein-DNA interactions can be obtained from data on protein binding to random oligos under controlled conditions (SELEX experiment data). We show that 'robust' generation of an appropriate data set is achieved by a suitable modification of the standard SELEX procedure, and propose a novel bioinformatic algorithm for analysis of such data. Finally, we use quantitative data analysis, bioinformatic methods and kinetic modeling to analyze gene expression strategies of bacterial viruses. We study bacteriophage Xp10 that infects rice pathogen Xanthomonas oryzae. Xp10 is an unusual bacteriophage, which has morphology and genome organization that most closely

  15. Energy return on investment: Theory and application to biophysical economics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, David J.

    This dissertation is comprised of an introduction and five manuscripts split into two main sections: theory and application. Manuscripts one and four have been published, manuscript three has been accepted for publication, and manuscripts two and five are currently in review for publication. The theory sections contains the first two manuscripts. The first manuscript is a review of the literature on Energy Return on Investment (EROI) analysis. I cover five areas in this manuscript, including: (1) EROI and corn ethanol, (2) EROI for most major fuels, (3) alternative EROI applications, (4) EROI and the economy, and (5) the minimum EROI for society. The second manuscript provides a methodological framework for performing EROI analysis. I cover the following areas in this manuscript: (1) boundaries of analysis, (2) energy quality corrections, (3) energy intensity values, and lastly (4) alternative EROI statistics. The applications section contains manuscripts three through five. The third manuscript provides a biophysical model of economic growth indicating that the feedback mechanisms between oil supply and oil price have created a growth paradox: maintaining business as usual economic growth will require the production of new sources of oil, yet the only sources of oil remaining require high oil prices, thus hampering economic growth. The fourth manuscript is a study on the geographic variability of corn ethanol production. The main conclusions of this study were: (1) the statistical error associated with calculating the EROI of corn ethanol was enough to cast doubt as to whether corn ethanol yields net energy, and (2) failure to account for the geographic variation in corn yields and fertilizer inputs artificially inflated previous estimates of the EROI or corn ethanol. In the fifth manuscript I measure the impact of the Urban Heat Island within the metropolitan area of San Juan, Puerto Rico, on the electricity demand within the city. I calculated that the UHI

  16. The Multistream Self: Biophysical, Mental, Social, and Existential

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vinod D. Deshmukh

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Self is difficult to define because of its multiple, constitutive streams of functional existence. A more comprehensive and expanded definition of self is proposed. The standard bio-psycho-social model of psyche is expanded to biophysical-mental-social and existential self. The total human experience is better understood and explained by adding the existential component. Existential refers to lived human experience, which is firmly rooted in reality. Existential living is the capacity to live fully in the present, and respond freely and flexibly to new experience without fear. Four common fears of isolation, insecurity, insignificance, and death can be overcome by developing a lifestyle of whole-hearted engagement in the present reality, creative problem solving, self-actualization, and altruism. Such integrative living creates a sense of presence with self-awareness, understanding, and existential well-being. Well-being is defined as a life of happiness, contentment, low distress, and good health with positive outlook. Self is a complex, integrative process of living organisms. It organizes, coordinates, and integrates energy-information within and around itself, spontaneously, unconsciously, and consciously. Self-process is understood in terms of synergetics, coordination dynamics, and energy-information–directed self-organization. It is dynamic, composite, ever renewing, and enduring. It can be convergent or divergent, and can function as the source or target of its own behavior-mentation. The experience of self is continuously generated by spontaneous activation of neural networks in the cerebral neocortex by the brainstem-diencephalic arousal system. The multiple constitutive behavioral-mental streams develop concurrently into a unique experience of self, specific for a person at his/her developmental stage. The chronological neuro-behavioral-mental development of self is described in detail from embryonic stage to old age. Self can be

  17. The multistream self: biophysical, mental, social, and existential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deshmukh, Vinod D

    2008-03-25

    Self is difficult to define because of its multiple, constitutive streams of functional existence. A more comprehensive and expanded definition of self is proposed. The standard bio-psycho-social model of psyche is expanded to biophysical-mental-social and existential self. The total human experience is better understood and explained by adding the existential component. Existential refers to lived human experience, which is firmly rooted in reality. Existential living is the capacity to live fully in the present, and respond freely and flexibly to new experience without fear. Four common fears of isolation, insecurity, insignificance, and death can be overcome by developing a lifestyle of whole-hearted engagement in the present reality, creative problem solving, self-actualization, and altruism. Such integrative living creates a sense of presence with self-awareness, understanding, and existential well-being. Well-being is defined as a life of happiness, contentment, low distress, and good health with positive outlook. Self is a complex, integrative process of living organisms. It organizes, coordinates, and integrates energy-information within and around itself, spontaneously, unconsciously, and consciously. Self-process is understood in terms of synergetics, coordination dynamics, and energy-information-directed self-organization. It is dynamic, composite, ever renewing, and enduring. It can be convergent or divergent, and can function as the source or target of its own behavior-mentation. The experience of self is continuously generated by spontaneous activation of neural networks in the cerebral neocortex by the brainstem-diencephalic arousal system. The multiple constitutive behavioral-mental streams develop concurrently into a unique experience of self, specific for a person at his/her developmental stage. The chronological neuro-behavioral-mental development of self is described in detail from embryonic stage to old age. Self can be behaviorally

  18. Biophysical and physiological integration of proper clothing for exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez, R R

    1987-01-01

    .) or the level of hypovolemia is not excessive and the person is fully heat acclimated. Problems such as these may be theoretical, but they serve to show that the thermal biophysics and physiology of exercise follow similar fundamental pathways that can be highly pertinent. As we sought to point out in this chapter, these pathways have merged in the last 30 years with developments such as warmth without bulk for backpackers (which is a welcomed contrast to heavy arctic wear), materials that allow athletes to remain somewhat comfortable while sweating, and other advances that luckily have replaced the less appealing sports apparel such as the old woolen baseball uniform.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS) PMID:3297725

  19. Comparison of biophysical factors influencing on emphysema quantification with low-dose CT

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heo, Chang Yong; Kim, Jong Hyo

    2014-03-01

    Emphysema Index(EI) measurements in MDCT is known to be influenced by various biophysical factors such as total lung volume, and body size. We investigated the association of the four biophysical factors with emphysema index in low-dose MDCT. In particular, we attempted to identify a potentially stronger biophysical factor than total lung volume. A total of 400 low-dose MDCT volumes taken at 120kVp, 40mAs, 1mm thickness, and B30f reconstruction kernel were used. The lungs, airways, and pulmonary vessels were automatically segmented, and two Emphysema Indices, relative area below -950HU(RA950) and 15th percentile(Perc15), were extracted from the segmented lungs. The biophysical factors such as total lung volume(TLV), mode of lung attenuation(ModLA), effective body diameter(EBD), and the water equivalent body diameter(WBD) were estimated from the segmented lung and body area. The association of biophysical factors with emphysema indices were evaluated by correlation coefficients. The mean emphysema indices were 8.3±5.5(%) in RA950, and -930±18(HU) in Perc15. The estimates of biophysical factors were 4.7±1.0(L) in TLV, -901±21(HU) in ModLA, 26.9±2.2(cm) in EBD, and 25.9±2.6(cm) in WBD. The correlation coefficients of biophysical factors with RA950 were 0.73 in TLV, 0.94 in ModLA, 0.31 in EBD, and 0.18 WBD, the ones with Perc15 were 0.74 in TLV, 0.98 in ModLA, 0.29 in EBD, and 0.15 WBD. Study results revealed that two biophysical factors, TLV and ModLA, mostly affects the emphysema indices. In particular, the ModLA exhibited strongest correlation of 0.98 with Perc15, which indicating the ModLA is the most significant confounding biophysical factor in emphysema indices measurement.

  20. Agriculture sector resource and environmental policy analysis: an economic and biophysical approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    House, R; McDowell, H; Peters, M; Heimlich, R

    1999-01-01

    Agricultural pollution of the environment is jointly determined by economic decisions driving land use, production practices, and stochastic biophysical processes associated with agricultural production, land and climate characteristics. It follows that environmental and economic statistics, traditionally collected independently of each other, offer little insight into non-point pollutant loadings. We argue that effective policy development would be facilitated by integrating environmental and economic data gathering, combined with simulation modelling linking economic and biophysical components. Integrated data collection links economics, land use, production methods and environmental loadings. An integrated economic/biophysical modelling framework facilitates policy analysis because monetary incentives to reduce pollution can be evaluated in the context of market costs and returns that influence land use and production activity. This allows prediction of environmental and economic outcomes from alternative policies to solve environmental problems. We highlight steps taken to merge economic and biophysical modelling for policy analysis within the Economic Research Service of the United States Department of Agriculture. An example analysis of a policy to reduce agricultural nitrogen pollution is presented, with the economic and environmental results illustrating the value of linked economic and biophysical analysis. PMID:10231835

  1. Biotic games and cloud experimentation as novel media for biophysics education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riedel-Kruse, Ingmar; Blikstein, Paulo

    2014-03-01

    First-hand, open-ended experimentation is key for effective formal and informal biophysics education. We developed, tested and assessed multiple new platforms that enable students and children to directly interact with and learn about microscopic biophysical processes: (1) Biotic games that enable local and online play using galvano- and photo-tactic stimulation of micro-swimmers, illustrating concepts such as biased random walks, Low Reynolds number hydrodynamics, and Brownian motion; (2) an undergraduate course where students learn optics, electronics, micro-fluidics, real time image analysis, and instrument control by building biotic games; and (3) a graduate class on the biophysics of multi-cellular systems that contains a cloud experimentation lab enabling students to execute open-ended chemotaxis experiments on slimemolds online, analyze their data, and build biophysical models. Our work aims to generate the equivalent excitement and educational impact for biophysics as robotics and video games have had for mechatronics and computer science, respectively. We also discuss how scaled-up cloud experimentation systems can support MOOCs with true lab components and life-science research in general.

  2. Laboratory Building.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Herrera, Joshua M. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2015-03-01

    This report is an analysis of the means of egress and life safety requirements for the laboratory building. The building is located at Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) in Albuquerque, NM. The report includes a prescriptive-based analysis as well as a performance-based analysis. Following the analysis are appendices which contain maps of the laboratory building used throughout the analysis. The top of all the maps is assumed to be north.

  3. Introducing interdisciplinary science to second year undergraduates in a Current Topics in Biophysics course

    CERN Document Server

    Jerzak, Stanislaw

    2015-01-01

    We offer second year students the opportunity to explore Current Topics in Biophysics in a course co-taught by a physicist and a biologist. The interdisciplinary course allows university students to engage in analytical thinking that integrates physics and biology. The students are either biophysics majors (50%) or from a diversity of science majors (about 30% life sciences). All will have taken first year courses in biology, physics and mathematics. The course is divided into: 1) The application of physical approaches to biological problems using case studies (how high can a tree grow? and biological pumps are two examples); 2) An introduction to physics concepts for which potential applications are explored (biophotonics and its application in fluorescence microscopy and photodynamic therapy is one example); and 3) Presentations from industry and university researchers who describe careers, research and clinical applications of biophysics. Over the six years the course has been offered, students have achiev...

  4. Materials science and biophysics applications at the ISOLDE radioactive ion beam facility

    CERN Document Server

    Wahl, U

    2011-01-01

    The ISOLDE isotope separator facility at CERN provides a variety of radioactive ion beams, currently more than 800 different isotopes from ~65 chemical elements. The radioisotopes are produced on-line by nuclear reactions from a 1.4 GeV proton beam with various types of targets, outdiffusion of the reaction products and, if possible, chemically selective ionisation, followed by 60 kV acceleration and mass separation. While ISOLDE is mainly used for nuclear and atomic physics studies, applications in materials science and biophysics account for a significant part (currently ~15%) of the delivered beam time, requested by 18 different experiments. The ISOLDE materials science and biophysics community currently consists of ~80 scientists from more than 40 participating institutes and 21 countries. In the field of materials science, investigations focus on the study of semiconductors and oxides, with the recent additions of nanoparticles and metals, while the biophysics studies address the toxicity of metal ions i...

  5. Biophysical interactions in the Cabo Frio upwelling system, southeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Augusto Coelho-Souza

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The rising of cold water from deeper levels characterizes coastal upwelling systems. This flow makes nutrients available in the euphotic layer, which enhances phytoplankton production and growth. On the Brazilian coast, upwelling is most intense in the Cabo Frio region (RJ. The basic knowledge of this system was reviewed in accordance with concepts of biophysical interactions. The high frequency and amplitude of the prevailing winds are the main factor promoting the rise of South Atlantic Central Water, but meanders and eddies in the Brazil Current as well as local topography and coast line are also important. Upwelling events are common during spring/summer seasons. Primary biomass is exported by virtue of the water circulation and is also controlled by rapid zooplankton predation. Small pelagic fish regulate plankton growth and in their turn are preyed on by predatory fish. Sardine furnishes an important regional fish stock. Shoreline irregularities define the embayment formation of the Marine Extractive Reserve of Arraial do Cabo making it an area with evident different intensities of upwelled water that harbors high species diversity. Consequently, on a small spatial scale there are environments with tropical and subtropical features, a point to be explored as a particularity of this ecosystem.Os sistemas costeiros de ressurgência são caracterizados pela ascensão de águas frias que tornam os nutrientes disponíveis na camada eufótica para o crescimento e aumento da produção fitoplanctônica. No Brasil, a região do Cabo Frio (RJ é o principal sistema de ressurgência costeira. O objetivo desse artigo foi revisar o atual conhecimento desse sistema através dos conceitos sobre interações biofísicas. A ascensão da Água Central do Atlântico Sul ocorre devido à alta frequência e amplitude dos ventos, à presença de meandros e vórtices na Corrente do Brasil, além da topografia local e da linha de costa. Os eventos de ressurg

  6. Novel Acoustic Wave Microsystems for Biophysical Studies of Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senveli, Sukru Ufuk

    biocompatible polymer, for dispensing cells into microcavities. A high frequency PCB including a matching circuit was designed for the SAW devices. 3D printed housing was also prepared for demonstrating the integration capability. Experimental results were collected first for analysis of high glycerin content in deionized water. Furthermore, polystyrene microbeads were counted with the system, and their sizes were differentiated experimentally to demonstrate the operation with solid media. Ultimately, biological cells were sensed and characterized. After tumor cells in media were transported to and trapped in microcavities, the proposed platform used SAW interaction between the substrate and the cells to extract their mechanical stiffness based on the ultrasound velocity. Measurements showed that output phase information is an indicator of the stiffness modulus of the trapped cells. Small populations of various types of cells such as MCF7, MDA-MB-231, SKBR3, and JJ012 were characterized and characteristic moduli were estimated for each cell population. In conclusion, the results indicate that high frequency stiffness modulus is a possible biomarker for aggressiveness of the tumor and that microcavity coupled SAW devices are a good candidate for non-invasive interrogation and high frequency biophysical studies of single cells. The proposed system is a successfully miniaturized ultrasonic biosensor and can be integrated with microchannels to obtain higher throughput upon refinement of the design as evidenced by the initial results with microfluidics. Improvement in performance and signal strength is also shown to be possible through matching circuits as demonstrated.

  7. Dynamics Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Dynamics Lab replicates vibration environments for every Navy platform. Testing performed includes: Flight Clearance, Component Improvement, Qualification, Life...

  8. Chemistry Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Purpose: To conduct fundamental studies of highway materials aimed at understanding both failure mechanisms and superior performance. New standard test methods are...

  9. Montlake Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The NWFSC conducts critical fisheries science research at its headquarters in Seattle, WA and at five research stations throughout Washington and Oregon. The unique...

  10. Visualization Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — FUNCTION: Evaluates and improves the operational effectiveness of existing and emerging electronic warfare systems. By analyzing and visualizing simulation results...

  11. Electrophysiological Data and the Biophysical Modelling of Local Cortical Circuits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dimitris Pinotsis

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper shows how recordings of gamma oscillations – under different experimental conditions or from different subjects – can be combined with a class of population models called neural fields and dynamic causal modeling (DCM to distinguish among alternative hypotheses regarding cortical structure and function. This approach exploits inter-subject variability and trial-specific effects associated with modulations in the peak frequency of gamma oscillations. It draws on the computational power of Bayesian model inversion, when applied to neural field models of cortical dynamics. Bayesian model comparison allows one to adjudicate among different mechanistic hypotheses about cortical excitability, synaptic kinetics and the cardinal topographic features of local cortical circuits. It also provides optimal parameter estimates that quantify neuromodulation and the spatial dispersion of axonal connections or summation of receptive fields in the visual cortex. This paper provides an overview of a family of neural field models that have been recently implemented using the DCM toolbox of the academic freeware Statistical Parametric Mapping (SPM. The SPM software is a popular platform for analyzing neuroimaging data, used by several neuroscience communities worldwide. DCM allows for a formal (Bayesian statistical analysis of cortical network connectivity, based upon realistic biophysical models of brain responses. It is this particular feature of DCM – the unique combination of generative models with optimization techniques based upon (variational Bayesian principles – that furnishes a novel way to characterize functional brain architectures. In particular, it provides answers to questions about how the brain is wired and how it responds to different experimental manipulations. For a review of the general role of neural fields in SPM the reader can consult e.g. see [1]. Neural fields have a long and illustrious history in mathematical

  12. Measurement of bio-physical signals for posture movement on the transformation system

    OpenAIRE

    Kim, Jeong-lae; Kim, Kyu-dong

    2014-01-01

    A signal transformation system of posture movement for the stable state was designed in order to measure the bio-physical signal. To estimate the subject in a stable state on the basis of the bio-physical signal in the posture movement, the conditions of vision, vestibular, somatosensory apparatus and the central nervous system (CNS) were detected. Based on the vision condition, there was a greater average variation (Vi-αAVG-MAX and Vi-αAVG-MIN) in position with eyes closed and eyes opened (P...

  13. Learning Laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hay, Lyn; Callison, Daniel

    2000-01-01

    Considers the school library media center as an information learning laboratory. Topics include information literacy; Kuhlthau's Information Search Process model; inquiry theory and approach; discovery learning; process skills of laboratory science; the information scientist; attitudes of media specialists, teachers, and students; displays and Web…

  14. Coupling Biophysical and Socioeconomic Models for Coral Reef Systems in Quintana Roo, Mexican Caribbean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth A. Fulton

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Transdisciplinary approaches that consider both socioeconomic and biophysical processes are central to understanding and managing rapid change in coral reef systems worldwide. To date, there have been limited attempts to couple the two sets of processes in dynamic models for coral reefs, and these attempts are confined to reef systems in developed countries. We present an approach to coupling existing biophysical and socioeconomic models for coral reef systems in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo. The biophysical model is multiscale, using dynamic equations to capture local-scale ecological processes on individual reefs, with reefs connected at regional scales by the ocean transport of larval propagules. The agent-based socioeconomic model simulates changes in tourism, fisheries, and urbanization in the Quintana Roo region. Despite differences in the formulation and currencies of the two models, we were able to successfully modify and integrate them to synchronize and define information flows and feedbacks between them. A preliminary evaluation of the coupled model system indicates that the model gives reasonable predictions for fisheries and ecological variables and can be used to examine scenarios for future social–ecological change in Quintana Roo. We provide recommendations for where efforts might usefully be focused in future attempts to integrate models of biophysical and socioeconomic processes, based on the limitations of our coupled system.

  15. Learning from Our Evolving Understanding of Biophysical Interactions to Improve River Restoration Practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sear, D. A.

    2014-12-01

    Restoration of riverine habitats has largely proceeded on the assumption that by improving physical habitat, and more latterly processes, biophysical interactions will reassemble to a state similar to that prior to the disturbance event. Whilst there had been little monitoring to support this view, there is increasing evidence that the complexity of ecological systems demands a greater understanding of these biophysical interactions before we can state that a restoration has succeeded. In this paper I will draw on two examples to demonstrate the importance of understanding the spatial as well as the temporal scale of biophysical interactions. In the first example, field and modelling was used to demonstrate how different location of large wood and forest restoration can result in different hydrological outcomes. Similarly, as the forest matures it is possible to see change in restoration outcomes, extending beyond the lifetime of the project. In the second example I demonstrate how climate and land use drive the biophysical interactions within spawning salmonid habitats, research that questions accepted models used in the restoration of salmonid spawning habitat. Finally the paper reflects on the problems of restoring complex ecosystems; and points towards the need for improvements in how we research and communicate with stakeholders who ultimately live by the streams we restore.

  16. Biophysical properties of membrane lipids of anammox bacteria : I. Ladderane phospholipids form highly organized fluid membranes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boumann, Henry A.; Longo, Marjorie L.; Stroeve, Pieter; Poolman, Bert; Hopmans, Ellen C.; Stuart, Marc C. A.; Damste, Jaap S. Sinninghe; Schouten, Stefan

    2009-01-01

    Anammox bacteria that are capable of anaerobically oxidizing ammonium (anammox) with nitrite to nitrogen gas produce unique membrane phospholipids that comprise hydrocarbon chains with three or five linearly condensed cyclobutane rings. To gain insight into the biophysical properties of these 'ladde

  17. Study of the Peculiarities of Color Vision in the Course of "Biophysics" in a Pedagogical University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrova, Elena Borisovna; Sabirova, Fairuza Musovna

    2016-01-01

    The article substantiates the necessity of studying the peculiarities of color vision of human in the course "Biophysics" that have been integrated into many types of higher education institutions. It describes the experience of teaching this discipline in a pedagogical higher education institution. The article presents a brief review of…

  18. From global change to a butterfly flapping: biophysics and behaviour affect tropical climate change impacts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonebrake, Timothy C; Boggs, Carol L; Stamberger, Jeannie A; Deutsch, Curtis A; Ehrlich, Paul R

    2014-10-22

    Difficulty in characterizing the relationship between climatic variability and climate change vulnerability arises when we consider the multiple scales at which this variation occurs, be it temporal (from minute to annual) or spatial (from centimetres to kilometres). We studied populations of a single widely distributed butterfly species, Chlosyne lacinia, to examine the physiological, morphological, thermoregulatory and biophysical underpinnings of adaptation to tropical and temperate climates. Microclimatic and morphological data along with a biophysical model documented the importance of solar radiation in predicting butterfly body temperature. We also integrated the biophysics with a physiologically based insect fitness model to quantify the influence of solar radiation, morphology and behaviour on warming impact projections. While warming is projected to have some detrimental impacts on tropical ectotherms, fitness impacts in this study are not as negative as models that assume body and air temperature equivalence would suggest. We additionally show that behavioural thermoregulation can diminish direct warming impacts, though indirect thermoregulatory consequences could further complicate predictions. With these results, at multiple spatial and temporal scales, we show the importance of biophysics and behaviour for studying biodiversity consequences of global climate change, and stress that tropical climate change impacts are likely to be context-dependent.

  19. Absorption and Scattering Coefficients: A Biophysical-Chemistry Experiment Using Reflectance Spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cordon, Gabriela B.; Lagorio, M. Gabriela

    2007-01-01

    A biophysical-chemistry experiment, based on the reflectance spectroscopy for calculating the absorption and scattering coefficients of leaves is described. The results show that different plants species exhibit different values for both the coefficients because of their different pigment composition.

  20. Biophysical and human factors determine the distribution of poached elephants in Tsavo East National Park, Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kyale, D.M.; Ngene, S.M.; Maingi, J.

    2011-01-01

    This study investigates the distribution of poached elephants as well as the biophysical and anthropogenic factors that determine the distribution of the poached elephants in Tsavo East National Park (TENP), Kenya. Data on the distribution of poached elephants, from 1990 to 2005, were acquired from

  1. Summaries of fiscal year 1994 projects in medical applications and biophysical research

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This report provides information on the research supported in Fiscal Year 1994 by the Medical Applications and Biophysical Research Division of the Office of Health and Environmental Research. A brief statement of the scope of the following areas is presented: dosimetry; measurement science; radiological and chemical physics; structural biology; human genome; and medical applications. Summaries of the research projects in these categories are presented

  2. Biophysical inhibition of synthetic vs. naturally-derived pulmonary surfactant preparations by polymeric nanoparticles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beck-Broichsitter, Moritz; Ruppert, Clemens; Schmehl, Thomas; Günther, Andreas; Seeger, Werner

    2014-01-01

    Reasonable suspicion has accumulated that inhaled nano-scale particulate matter influences the biophysical function of the pulmonary surfactant system. Hence, it is evident to provide novel insights into the extent and mechanisms of nanoparticle-surfactant interactions in order to facilitate the fabrication of safe nanomedicines suitable for pulmonary applications. Negatively- and positively-charged poly(styrene) nanoparticles (diameters of ~100nm) served as model carriers. Nanoparticles were incubated with several synthetic and naturally-derived pulmonary surfactants to characterize the sensitivity of each preparation to biophysical inactivation. Changes in surface properties (i.e. adsorption and dynamic surface tension behavior) were monitored in a pulsating bubble surfactometer. Both nanoparticle formulations revealed a dose-dependent influence on the biophysical behavior of all investigated pulmonary surfactants. However, the surfactant sensitivity towards inhibition depended on both the carrier type, where negatively-charged nanoparticles showed increased inactivation potency compared to their positively-charged counterparts, and surfactant composition. Among the surfactants tested, synthetic mixtures (i.e. phospholipids, phospholipids supplemented with surfactant protein B, and Venticute®) were more susceptible to surface-activity inhibition as the more complex naturally-derived preparations (i.e. Alveofact® and large surfactant aggregates isolated from rabbit bronchoalveolar lavage fluid). Overall, nanoparticle characteristics and surfactant constitution both influence the extent of biophysical inhibition of pulmonary surfactants.

  3. Biophysical inhibition of pulmonary surfactant function by polymeric nanoparticles: role of surfactant protein B and C.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beck-Broichsitter, Moritz; Ruppert, Clemens; Schmehl, Thomas; Günther, Andreas; Seeger, Werner

    2014-11-01

    The current study investigated the mechanisms involved in the process of biophysical inhibition of pulmonary surfactant by polymeric nanoparticles (NP). The minimal surface tension of diverse synthetic surfactants was monitored in the presence of bare and surface-decorated (i.e. poloxamer 407) sub-100 nm poly(lactide) NP. Moreover, the influence of NP on surfactant composition (i.e. surfactant protein (SP) content) was studied. Dose-elevations of SP advanced the biophysical activity of the tested surfactant preparation. Surfactant-associated protein C supplemented phospholipid mixtures (PLM-C) were shown to be more susceptible to biophysical inactivation by bare NP than phospholipid mixture supplemented with surfactant protein B (PLM-B) and PLM-B/C. Surfactant function was hindered owing to a drastic depletion of the SP content upon contact with bare NP. By contrast, surface-modified NP were capable of circumventing unwanted surfactant inhibition. Surfactant constitution influences the extent of biophysical inhibition by polymeric NP. Steric shielding of the NP surface minimizes unwanted NP-surfactant interactions, which represents an option for the development of surfactant-compatible nanomedicines.

  4. X-ray structure and biophysical properties of rabbit fibroblast growth factor 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This report shows that the tertiary structure of rabbit FGF-1 is essentially identical to that of human FGF-1, with four surface mutations (140-amino-acid form). Biophysical data indicate that rabbit FGF-1 is less thermostable than human FGF-1 and has a slower association rate with the FGF-1 receptor. Mitogenic assays indicate that rabbit FGF-1 is tenfold less potent than human FGF-1; however, rabbit FGF-1 exhibits greater heparin stimulation such that its mitogenic activity in the presence of heparin is essentially indistinguishable from that of human FGF-1. The rabbit is an important and de facto animal model in the study of ischemic disease and angiogenic therapy. Additionally, fibroblast growth factor 1 (FGF-1) is emerging as one of the most important growth factors for novel pro-angiogenic and pro-arteriogenic therapy. However, despite its significance, the fundamental biophysical properties of rabbit FGF-1, including its X-ray structure, have never been reported. Here, the cloning, crystallization, X-ray structure and determination of the biophysical properties of rabbit FGF-1 are described. The X-ray structure shows that the amino-acid differences between human and rabbit FGF-1 are solvent-exposed and therefore potentially immunogenic, while the biophysical studies identify differences in thermostability and receptor-binding affinity that distinguish rabbit FGF-1 from human FGF-1

  5. Laboratory Tests

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Medical Devices Radiation-Emitting Products Vaccines, Blood & Biologics Animal & ... or conditions. What are lab tests? Laboratory tests are medical procedures that involve testing samples of blood, urine, or other tissues or ...

  6. Past and present biophysical redundancy of countries as a buffer to changes in food supply

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fader, Marianela; Rulli, Maria Cristina; Carr, Joel; Dell'Angelo, Jampel; D'Odorico, Paolo; Gephart, Jessica A.; Kummu, Matti; Magliocca, Nicholas; Porkka, Miina; Prell, Christina; Puma, Michael J.; Ratajczak, Zak; Seekell, David A.; Suweis, Samir; Tavoni, Alessandro

    2016-05-01

    Spatially diverse trends in population growth, climate change, industrialization, urbanization and economic development are expected to change future food supply and demand. These changes may affect the suitability of land for food production, implying elevated risks especially for resource-constrained, food-importing countries. We present the evolution of biophysical redundancy for agricultural production at country level, from 1992 to 2012. Biophysical redundancy, defined as unused biotic and abiotic environmental resources, is represented by the potential food production of ‘spare land’, available water resources (i.e., not already used for human activities), as well as production increases through yield gap closure on cultivated areas and potential agricultural areas. In 2012, the biophysical redundancy of 75 (48) countries, mainly in North Africa, Western Europe, the Middle East and Asia, was insufficient to produce the caloric nutritional needs for at least 50% (25%) of their population during a year. Biophysical redundancy has decreased in the last two decades in 102 out of 155 countries, 11 of these went from high to limited redundancy, and nine of these from limited to very low redundancy. Although the variability of the drivers of change across different countries is high, improvements in yield and population growth have a clear impact on the decreases of redundancy towards the very low redundancy category. We took a more detailed look at countries classified as ‘Low Income Economies (LIEs)’ since they are particularly vulnerable to domestic or external food supply changes, due to their limited capacity to offset for food supply decreases with higher purchasing power on the international market. Currently, nine LIEs have limited or very low biophysical redundancy. Many of these showed a decrease in redundancy over the last two decades, which is not always linked with improvements in per capita food availability.

  7. An ethnographic study: Becoming a physics expert in a biophysics research group

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, Idaykis

    Expertise in physics has been traditionally studied in cognitive science, where physics expertise is understood through the difference between novice and expert problem solving skills. The cognitive perspective of physics experts only create a partial model of physics expertise and does not take into account the development of physics experts in the natural context of research. This dissertation takes a social and cultural perspective of learning through apprenticeship to model the development of physics expertise of physics graduate students in a research group. I use a qualitative methodological approach of an ethnographic case study to observe and video record the common practices of graduate students in their biophysics weekly research group meetings. I recorded notes on observations and conduct interviews with all participants of the biophysics research group for a period of eight months. I apply the theoretical framework of Communities of Practice to distinguish the cultural norms of the group that cultivate physics expert practices. Results indicate that physics expertise is specific to a topic or subfield and it is established through effectively publishing research in the larger biophysics research community. The participant biophysics research group follows a learning trajectory for its students to contribute to research and learn to communicate their research in the larger biophysics community. In this learning trajectory students develop expert member competencies to learn to communicate their research and to learn the standards and trends of research in the larger research community. Findings from this dissertation expand the model of physics expertise beyond the cognitive realm and add the social and cultural nature of physics expertise development. This research also addresses ways to increase physics graduate student success towards their PhD. and decrease the 48% attrition rate of physics graduate students. Cultivating effective research

  8. Past and Present Biophysical Redundancy of Countries as a Buffer to Changes in Food Supply

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fader, Marianela; Rulli, Maria Cristina; Carr, Joel; Dell' Angelo, Jampel; D' Odorico, Paolo; Gephart, Jessica A.; Kummu, Matti; Magliocca, Nicholas; Porkka, Miina; Prell, Christina; Puma, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    Spatially diverse trends in population growth, climate change, industrialization, urbanization and economic development are expected to change future food supply and demand. These changes may affect the suitability of land for food production, implying elevated risks especially for resource constrained, food-importing countries. We present the evolution of biophysical redundancy for agricultural production at country level, from 1992 to 2012. Biophysical redundancy, defined as unused biotic and abiotic environmental resources, is represented by the potential food production of 'spare land', available water resources (i.e., not already used for human activities), as well as production increases through yield gap closure on cultivated areas and potential agricultural areas. In 2012, the biophysical redundancy of 75 (48) countries, mainly in North Africa, Western Europe, the Middle East and Asia, was insufficient to produce the caloric nutritional needs for at least 50% (25%) of their population during a year. Biophysical redundancy has decreased in the last two decades in 102 out of 155 countries, 11 of these went from high to limited redundancy, and nine of these from limited to very low redundancy. Although the variability of the drivers of change across different countries is high, improvements in yield and population growth have a clear impact on the decreases of redundancy towards the very low redundancy category. We took a more detailed look at countries classified as 'Low Income Economies (LIEs)' since they are particularly vulnerable to domestic or external food supply changes, due to their limited capacity to offset for food supply decreases with higher purchasing power on the international market. Currently, nine LIEs have limited or very low biophysical redundancy. Many of these showed a decrease in redundancy over the last two decades, which is not always linked with improvements in per capita food availability.

  9. Hydrogen-rich gas production via fast pyrolysis of biophysical dried sludge: Effect of particle size and moisture content on product yields and syngas composition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Rong; Liu, Jinwen; Zhao, Chenxi; Li, Yuliang; Chen, Aixia

    2016-06-01

    After biophysical drying, a novel biophysical dried sludge particle was obtained. This work aims to investigate the function and effects of particle sizes and moisture contents on the fast pyrolysis of biophysical dried sludge particles. The results showed that large particles (>4 mm) favoured the oil generation with a maximum value of 19.0%, and small particles (pyrolysis. PMID:27118735

  10. Biophysical and medical safety basis of laser emission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paltsev, Yu.; Levina, A.

    1996-01-01

    Laser equipment may inflict serious losses to human health if safety norms established by relevant standards and other documentation are not properly observed. It is explained by physical properties of laser emission (LE) which differs from general light sources by quantitative behavior of such parameters as the degrees of coherence, monochromaticity, brightness, polarization. Thus, biological effects due to laser emission, as a rule, are more expressed comparing with other types of emission from other spontaneous light sources. LE effects biological tissues through the density of energy flow and impulse duration. It is common knowledge nowadays that LE biological action is assessed by two criteria: physical parameters and absorptive properties of tissues exposed to rays. LE causes the greatest danger to the eyes due to their specific structure. The next target organ vulnerable to LE is skin. Pathological changes of skin depend on the LE power, time of exposure, wave length, and the extent of skin pigmentation. Along with different kinds of damage directly in the tissues exposed to rays, LE may cause changes in organs and body systems subject to indirect exposure. It is important that these changes may develop due to low intensity levels of LE that do not cause local damage. National and international standards on LE safety are based on maximum allowable levels (MAL) of exposure. It has been generally accepted that the main MAL criterion is LE threshold minimal exposure which causes damage to retina, eyes, and skin. As distinct from foreign safety standards, hygienic norms and regulations are in force in the Russian Federation where additional co-efficients along with standard generally accepted MAL values have been introduced for the persons who are subject to occupational regular exposure to lasers. This approach has been chosen after the results of follow-up and health studies of these occupational contingents have been analyzed, and experiments on laboratory

  11. A selective view of stochastic inference and modeling problems in nanoscale biophysics

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    KOU S. C.

    2009-01-01

    Advances in nanotechnology enable scientists for the first time to study biological processes on a nanoscale molecule-by-molecule basis. They also raise challenges and opportunities for statisticians and applied probabilists. To exemplify the stochastic inference and modeling problems in the field, this paper discusses a few selected cases, ranging from likelihood inference, Bayesian data augmentation, and semi- and non-parametric inference of nanometric biochemical systems to the utilization of stochastic integro-differential equations and stochastic networks to model single-molecule biophysical processes. We discuss the statistical and probabilistic issues as well as the biophysical motivation and physical meaning behind the problems, emphasizing the analysis and modeling of real experimental data.

  12. Testing the Simple Biosphere model (SiB) using point micrometeorological and biophysical data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sellers, P. J.; Dorman, J. L.

    1987-01-01

    The suitability of the Simple Biosphere (SiB) model of Sellers et al. (1986) for calculation of the surface fluxes for use within general circulation models is assessed. The structure of the SiB model is described, and its performance is evaluated in terms of its ability to realistically and accurately simulate biophysical processes over a number of test sites, including Ruthe (Germany), South Carolina (U.S.), and Central Wales (UK), for which point biophysical and micrometeorological data were available. The model produced simulations of the energy balances of barley, wheat, maize, and Norway Spruce sites over periods ranging from 1 to 40 days. Generally, it was found that the model reproduced time series of latent, sensible, and ground-heat fluxes and surface radiative temperature comparable with the available data.

  13. A selective view of stochastic inference and mod-eling problems in nanoscale biophysics

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    KOU; S.C.

    2009-01-01

    Advances in nanotechnology enable scientists for the first time to study biological pro-cesses on a nanoscale molecule-by-molecule basis.They also raise challenges and opportunities for statisticians and applied probabilists.To exemplify the stochastic inference and modeling problems in the field,this paper discusses a few selected cases,ranging from likelihood inference,Bayesian data augmentation,and semi-and non-parametric inference of nanometric biochemical systems to the uti-lization of stochastic integro-differential equations and stochastic networks to model single-molecule biophysical processes.We discuss the statistical and probabilistic issues as well as the biophysical motivation and physical meaning behind the problems,emphasizing the analysis and modeling of real experimental data.

  14. Biophysical criteria used by farmers for fallow selection in West and Central Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Norgrove, Lindsey; Hauser, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    In many parts of the humid Tropics, slash and burn shifting cultivation, incorporating a fallow phase, is the most common farming method, encompassing a broad diversity of techniques. The ecological productivity and sustainability of such systems depend upon the crop:fallow time ratio. Farmers often have biophysical criteria by which to match parcels to cropping systems and decide, for example, when to recultivate a fallow. In this paper, we collate reports of indicators used by farmers to ai...

  15. Biomedical engineering and biophysics at Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe; Medizintechnik und Biophysik im Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Knapp, U. [Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe GmbH Technik und Umwelt (Germany). Programm Mikrosystemtechnik

    2000-07-01

    Three central topics dominate this R and D-field: Systems development for surgical interventions and diagnostics, encompassing dedicated operation theater systems, training systems for minimally invasive surgery, and image understanding techniques. Activities in support of rehabilitation medicine comprising biophysical investigations and the development of multifunctional prostheses. Application of radioisotope techniques for diagnostics and therapy. Most of the developments are being done in close collaboration with clinical and industrial partners. (orig.)

  16. Large-Scale Overexpression and Purification of ADARs from Saccharomyces cerevisiae for Biophysical and Biochemical Studies

    OpenAIRE

    Macbeth, Mark R.; Bass, Brenda L.

    2007-01-01

    Many biochemical and biophysical analyses of enzymes require quantities of protein that are difficult to obtain from expression in an endogenous system. To further complicate matters, native adenosine deaminases that act on RNA (ADARs) are expressed at very low levels, and overexpression of active protein has been unsuccessful in common bacterial systems. Here we describe the plasmid construction, expression, and purification procedures for ADARs overexpressed in the yeast Saccharomyces cerev...

  17. Biophysical Properties of Scaffolds Modulate Human Blood Vessel Formation from Circulating Endothelial Colony-Forming Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Critser, Paul J.; Yoder, Mervin C.

    A functional vascular system forms early in development and is continually remodeled throughout the life of the organism. Impairment to the regeneration or repair of this system leads to tissue ischemia, dysfunction, and disease. The process of vascular formation and remodeling is complex, relying on local microenvironmental cues, cytokine signaling, and multiple cell types to function properly. Tissue engineering strategies have attempted to exploit these mechanisms to develop functional vascular networks for the generation of artificial tissues and therapeutic strategies to restore tissue homeostasis. The success of these strategies requires the isolation of appropriate progenitor cell sources which are straightforward to obtain, display high proliferative potential, and demonstrate an ability to form functional vessels. Several populations are of interest including endothelial colony-forming cells, a subpopulation of endothelial progenitor cells. Additionally, the development of scaffolds to deliver and support progenitor cell survival and function is crucial for the formation of functional vascular networks. The composition and biophysical properties of these scaffolds have been shown to modulate endothelial cell behavior and vessel formation. However, further investigation is needed to better understand how these mechanical properties and biophysical properties impact vessel formation. Additionally, several other cell populations are involved in neoangiogenesis and formation of tissue parenchyma and an understanding of the potential impact of these cell populations on the biophysical properties of scaffolds will also be needed to advance these strategies. This chapter examines how the biophysical properties of matrix scaffolds can influence vessel formation and remodeling and, in particular, the impact on in vivo human endothelial progenitor cell vessel formation.

  18. Biophysical and sociocultural factors underlying spatial trade-offs of ecosystem services in semiarid watersheds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina García-Llorente

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Biophysical and social systems are linked to form social-ecological systems whose sustainability depends on their capacity to absorb uncertainty and cope with disturbances. In this study, we explored the key biophysical and socio-cultural factors underlying ecosystem service supply in two semiarid watersheds of southern Spain. These included variables associated with the role that freshwater flows and biodiversity play in securing the system's capacity to sustain essential ecosystem services and their relationship with social demand for services, local water governance, and land-use intensification. Our results reveal the importance of considering the invisible dimensions of water and biodiversity, i.e. green freshwater flows and trait-based indicators, because of their relevance to the supply of ecosystem services. Furthermore, they uncover the importance of traditional irrigation canals, a local water governance system, in maintaining the ecosystems' capacity to supply services. The study also highlights the complex trade-offs that occur because of the spatial mismatch between ecosystem service supply (upstream and ecosystem service demand (downstream in watersheds. Finally, we found that land-use intensification generally resulted in losses of the biophysical factors that underpin the supply of some ecosystem services, increases in social demand for less diversified services, and the abandonment of local governance practices. Attempts to manage social-ecological systems toward sustainability at the local scale should identify the key biophysical and socio-cultural factors that are essential for maintaining ecosystem services and should recognize existing interrelationships between them. Land-use management should also take into account ecosystem service trade-offs and the consequences resulting from land-use intensification.

  19. Biophysical Model of Ion Transport across Human Respiratory Epithelia Allows Quantification of Ion Permeabilities

    OpenAIRE

    Garcia, Guilherme J.M.; Boucher, Richard C.; Elston, Timothy C.

    2013-01-01

    Lung health and normal mucus clearance depend on adequate hydration of airway surfaces. Because transepithelial osmotic gradients drive water flows, sufficient hydration of the airway surface liquid depends on a balance between ion secretion and absorption by respiratory epithelia. In vitro experiments using cultures of primary human nasal epithelia and human bronchial epithelia have established many of the biophysical processes involved in airway surface liquid homeostasis. Most experimental...

  20. Assessment of bio-physical drought hazards. A case study of Karkheh River basin in Iran

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamali, Bahareh; Abbaspour, Karim; Houshmand Kouchi, Delaram; Yang, Hong

    2016-04-01

    Iran has been affected by frequent droughts. Climate change is expected to intensify the situation in the future. Extreme drought events have had serious impacts on hydrological and agricultural sector. Thus, identification of bio-physical drought hazard is critically important for formulating effective adaptive measures to improve water and food security. This study aims to investigate temporal and spatial pattern of drought hazards in meteorological, hydrological, and agricultural (inclusively biophysical) sectors in the Karkheh River Basin of Iran in the historical and future climate change context. To do so, drought hazard indices were built based on the severity and frequency of standardized precipitation index (SPI), standardized runoff index (SRI), and standardized soil moisture index (SSMI), which represent the three aspects of drought hazards. Variables required for calculating these indices were obtained from SWAT (Soil and Water Assessment Tool) model constructed for the basin. The model was calibrated based on monthly runoff using the Sequential Uncertainty Fitting (SUFI-2) algorithm in SWAT-CUP. Based on the climate variability and drought analysis, three drought hazard classes, namely low, medium and high, were defined. This help identify how agricultural and hydrological sectors are related to meteorological droughts. Additionally, the bio-physical drivers of drought hazards were identified for each class. Comparing the results during historic and future scenarios revealed that the frequency of high- severity hazards will increase, whereas the same is not predicted for the area with medium hazard intensity. Inferred from findings of this study, the combined application of the SWAT model with bio-physical drought hazard concept helps better understanding of climate risks to water and food security. The developed approach is replicable at different scales to provide a robust planning tool for policy makers.

  1. Increasing the effectiveness of vaginal microbicides: a biophysical framework to rethink behavioral acceptability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stéphane Verguet

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Microbicide candidates delivered via gel vehicles are intended to coat the vaginal epithelium after application. The coating process depends on intrinsic biophysical properties of the gel texture, which restricts the potential choices for an effective product: the gel first must be physically synthesizable, then acceptable to the user, and finally applied in a manner promoting timely adequate coating, so that the user adherence is optimized. We present a conceptual framework anchoring microbicide behavioral acceptability within the fulfillment of the product biophysical requirements. METHODS: We conducted a semi-qualitative/quantitative study targeting women aged 18-55 in Northern California to assess user preferences for microbicide gel attributes. Attributes included: (i the wait time between application and intercourse, (ii the gel texture and (iii the trade-off between wait time and gel texture. Wait times were assessed using a mathematical model determining coating rates depending upon the gel's physical attributes. RESULTS: 71 women participated. Results suggest that women would independently prefer a gel spreading rapidly, in 2 to 15 minutes (P0.10 for use with a steady partner, a preference for a watery gel spreading rapidly rather than one having intermediate properties for use with a casual partner (P = 0.024. CONCLUSIONS: Biophysical constraints alter women's preferences regarding acceptable microbicide attributes. Product developers should offer a range of formulations in order to address all preferences. We designed a conceptual framework to rethink behavioral acceptability in terms of biophysical requirements that can help improve adherence in microbicide use ultimately enhancing microbicide effectiveness.

  2. Effects of biophysical and biochemical cues on human corneal epithelial cell behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tocce, Elizabeth J.

    2011-12-01

    Recent advances in the design of biomaterials aim at mimicking the natural biophysical and biochemical components found in a tissue's extracellular environment (ECM). Of particular interest in this work is mimicking the specialized ECM of the human corneal epithelium called the basement membrane (BM) and understanding how corneal epithelial cells (HCECs) respond to biophysical and biochemical cues. To this end, well defined topographic features with dimension of the BM (20 to 200 nm) were fabricated to support controlled cell interactions with biochemical motifs (e.g., adhesive peptide ligands) found in the BM. Here, features of 30 to 70 nm that represent the smallest features found in the BM were used to demonstrate that the smallest features that HCECs can recognize are 30 and 45 nm, depending on the soluble environment. In addition, HCECs demonstrate contact guidance on the smallest BM features (30 to 70 nm) and on the largest BM features (200 nm), but differs from contact guidance on micron-scale features, suggesting that BM scale topography scale is an influential factor in regulating HCEC behavior. To study the simultaneous presentation of biophysical and biochemical cues, topographic features are coated with thin films using a layer-by-layer deposition of covalently reacting polymers, poly(ethylene imine) and poly(2-vinyl-4,4-dimethylazlactone (PEI/PVDMA). The films are functionalized with the bioactive peptide argenine-glycine-aspartic acid (RGD) to control cell-substrate interactions. We demonstrate that PEI/PVDMA films can be functionalized with monotonically increasing densities of ROD to control HCEC attachment and proliferation. In addition PEI/PVDMA films functionalized with RGD were used to demonstrate that HCEC response to topographic cues is dependent on the scale of the topography, the surface chemical composition and the soluble environment. Results from these studies will advance the understanding of how BM-relevant biophysical and biochemical

  3. Materials science and biophysics applications at the ISOLDE radioactive ion beam facility

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wahl, U., E-mail: uwahl@itn.pt [Instituto Tecnologico e Nuclear, Estrada Nacional 10, 2686-953 Sacavem (Portugal); Centro de Fisica Nuclear da Universidade de Lisboa, Av. Prof. Gama Pinto 2, 1649-003 Lisboa (Portugal)

    2011-12-15

    The ISOLDE isotope separator facility at CERN provides a variety of radioactive ion beams, currently more than 800 different isotopes from {approx}70 chemical elements. The radioisotopes are produced on-line by nuclear reactions from a 1.4 GeV proton beam with various types of targets, outdiffusion of the reaction products and, if possible, chemically selective ionisation, followed by 60 kV acceleration and mass separation. While ISOLDE is mainly used for nuclear and atomic physics studies, applications in materials science and biophysics account for a significant part (currently {approx}15%) of the delivered beam time, requested by 18 different experiments. The ISOLDE materials science and biophysics community currently consists of {approx}80 scientists from more than 40 participating institutes and 21 countries. In the field of materials science, investigations focus on the study of semiconductors and oxides, with the recent additions of nanoparticles and metals, while the biophysics studies address the toxicity of metal ions in biological systems. The characterisation methods used are typical radioactive probe techniques such as Moessbauer spectroscopy, perturbed angular correlation, emission channeling, and tracer diffusion studies. In addition to these 'classic' methods of nuclear solid state physics, also standard semiconductor analysis techniques such as photoluminescence or deep level transient spectroscopy profit from the application of radioactive isotopes, which helps them to overcome their chemical 'blindness' since the nuclear half life of radioisotopes provides a signal that changes in time with characteristic exponential decay or saturation curves. In this presentation an overview will be given on the recent research activities in materials science and biophysics at ISOLDE, presenting some of the highlights during the last five years, together with a short outlook on the new developments under way.

  4. Modeling the effects of noninvasive transcranial brain stimulation at the biophysical, network, and cognitive Level

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hartwigsen, Gesa; Bergmann, Til Ole; Herz, Damian Marc;

    2015-01-01

    these approaches advance the scientific potential of NTBS as an interventional tool in cognitive neuroscience. (i) Leveraging the anatomical information provided by structural imaging, the electric field distribution in the brain can be modeled and simulated. Biophysical modeling approaches generate testable...... predictions regarding the impact of interindividual variations in cortical anatomy on the injected electric fields or the influence of the orientation of current flow on the physiological stimulation effects. (ii) Functional brain mapping of the spatiotemporal neural dynamics during cognitive tasks can...

  5. A biophysical model for identifying splicing regulatory elements and their interactions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji Wen

    Full Text Available Alternative splicing (AS of precursor mRNA (pre-mRNA is a crucial step in the expression of most eukaryotic genes. Splicing factors (SFs play an important role in AS regulation by binding to the cis-regulatory elements on the pre-mRNA. Although many splicing factors (SFs and their binding sites have been identified, their combinatorial regulatory effects remain to be elucidated. In this paper, we derive a biophysical model for AS regulation that integrates combinatorial signals of cis-acting splicing regulatory elements (SREs and their interactions. We also develop a systematic framework for model inference. Applying the biophysical model to a human RNA-Seq data set, we demonstrate that our model can explain 49.1%-66.5% variance of the data, which is comparable to the best result achieved by biophysical models for transcription. In total, we identified 119 SRE pairs between different regions of cassette exons that may regulate exon or intron definition in splicing, and 77 SRE pairs from the same region that may arise from a long motif or two different SREs bound by different SFs. Particularly, putative binding sites of polypyrimidine tract-binding protein (PTB, heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein (hnRNP F/H and E/K are identified as interacting SRE pairs, and have been shown to be consistent with the interaction models proposed in previous experimental results. These results show that our biophysical model and inference method provide a means of quantitative modeling of splicing regulation and is a useful tool for identifying SREs and their interactions. The software package for model inference is available under an open source license.

  6. THE INFLUENCE OF THE NUTRITIONAL FACTORS ON SOME BIOPHYSICAL PARAMETERS OF THE RUMINAL FLUID

    OpenAIRE

    IULIANA CREłESCU; RODICA CĂPRIłĂ; D. DRÎNCEANU; RODICA CHEREJI; MIHAELA PETCU; C-TIN MATEESCU

    2013-01-01

    At this hour, a large part of the products obtained through biotechnologies are used in animal fodder, thus contributing to the enhancement of the animal products obtained in economical conditions through optimising the nutrition. In the present study, we wanted to pursue the influence of a high level of cereal in fodder rations, as well as the effect of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Yea Sacc1026 strain on some biophysical parameters of the ruminal fluid, such as: pH, density and superf...

  7. Proceedings of the anatomical society of great britain and ireland, and the british biophysical society.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-05-01

    A joint meeting of the Anatomical Society of Great Britain and Ireland and the British Biophysical Society was held at the School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Leeds, from 5th to 7th January 1999. It included a symposium on 'Structure and function of molecular motors' and the Annual General Meetings of both Societies. The following are abstracts of communications and posters presented at the meeting. PMID:17103658

  8. Polish Academy of Sciences. Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics. Research Report 1998-1999

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The report presented research activities of the Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences, in 1998-1999. Research interests focus on: replication, mutagenesis and repair of DNA, regulation of gene expression, biosynthesis and post-translational modifications of proteins, gene sequencing and functional gene analysis, structure and function of enzymes, conformation of proteins and peptides, modeling of structures and prediction of function of proteins

  9. Biophysical and Economic Uncertainty in the Analysis of Poverty Impacts of Climate Change

    OpenAIRE

    Hertel, Thomas W.; Lobell, David; Verma, Monika

    2011-01-01

    This paper seeks to understand the main sources of uncertainty in assessing the impacts of climate change on agricultural output, international trade, and poverty. We incorporate biophysical uncertainty by sampling from a distribution of productivity shocks reflecting the impacts of climate on agricultural yields in 2030. These shocks, in turn, affect the global economy. The response of economic agents to climate change is the second source of uncertainty in our estimates. We find that, even ...

  10. Estimation efficiency of usage satellite derived and modelled biophysical products for yield forecasting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolotii, Andrii; Kussul, Nataliia; Skakun, Sergii; Shelestov, Andrii; Ostapenko, Vadim; Oliinyk, Tamara

    2015-04-01

    Efficient and timely crop monitoring and yield forecasting are important tasks for ensuring of stability and sustainable economic development [1]. As winter crops pay prominent role in agriculture of Ukraine - the main focus of this study is concentrated on winter wheat. In our previous research [2, 3] it was shown that usage of biophysical parameters of crops such as FAPAR (derived from Geoland-2 portal as for SPOT Vegetation data) is far more efficient for crop yield forecasting to NDVI derived from MODIS data - for available data. In our current work efficiency of usage such biophysical parameters as LAI, FAPAR, FCOVER (derived from SPOT Vegetation and PROBA-V data at resolution of 1 km and simulated within WOFOST model) and NDVI product (derived from MODIS) for winter wheat monitoring and yield forecasting is estimated. As the part of crop monitoring workflow (vegetation anomaly detection, vegetation indexes and products analysis) and yield forecasting SPIRITS tool developed by JRC is used. Statistics extraction is done for landcover maps created in SRI within FP-7 SIGMA project. Efficiency of usage satellite based and modelled with WOFOST model biophysical products is estimated. [1] N. Kussul, S. Skakun, A. Shelestov, O. Kussul, "Sensor Web approach to Flood Monitoring and Risk Assessment", in: IGARSS 2013, 21-26 July 2013, Melbourne, Australia, pp. 815-818. [2] F. Kogan, N. Kussul, T. Adamenko, S. Skakun, O. Kravchenko, O. Kryvobok, A. Shelestov, A. Kolotii, O. Kussul, and A. Lavrenyuk, "Winter wheat yield forecasting in Ukraine based on Earth observation, meteorological data and biophysical models," International Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation, vol. 23, pp. 192-203, 2013. [3] Kussul O., Kussul N., Skakun S., Kravchenko O., Shelestov A., Kolotii A, "Assessment of relative efficiency of using MODIS data to winter wheat yield forecasting in Ukraine", in: IGARSS 2013, 21-26 July 2013, Melbourne, Australia, pp. 3235 - 3238.

  11. Saxton Transportation Operations Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Saxton Transportation Operations Laboratory (Saxton Laboratory) is a state-of-the-art facility for conducting transportation operations research. The laboratory...

  12. Final report for Conference Support Grant "From Computational Biophysics to Systems Biology - CBSB12"

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hansmann, Ulrich H.E.

    2012-07-02

    This report summarizes the outcome of the international workshop “From Computational Biophysics to Systems Biology (CBSB12)” which was held June 3-5, 2012, at the University of Tennessee Conference Center in Knoxville, TN, and supported by DOE through the Conference Support Grant 120174. The purpose of CBSB12 was to provide a forum for the interaction between a data-mining interested systems biology community and a simulation and first-principle oriented computational biophysics/biochemistry community. CBSB12 was the sixth in a series of workshops of the same name organized in recent years, and the second that has been held in the USA. As in previous years, it gave researchers from physics, biology, and computer science an opportunity to acquaint each other with current trends in computational biophysics and systems biology, to explore venues of cooperation, and to establish together a detailed understanding of cells at a molecular level. The conference grant of $10,000 was used to cover registration fees and provide travel fellowships to selected students and postdoctoral scientists. By educating graduate students and providing a forum for young scientists to perform research into the working of cells at a molecular level, the workshop adds to DOE's mission of paving the way to exploit the abilities of living systems to capture, store and utilize energy.

  13. Age of oil palm plantations causes a strong change in surface biophysical variables

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabajo, Clifton; le Maire, Guerric; Knohl, Alexander

    2016-04-01

    Over the last decades, Indonesia has experienced dramatic land transformations with an expansion of oil palm plantations at the expense of tropical forests. As vegetation is a modifier of the climate near the ground these large-scale land transformations are expected to have major impacts on the surface biophysical variables i.e. surface temperature, albedo, and vegetation indices, e.g. the NDVI. Remote sensing data are needed to assess such changes at regional scale. We used 2 Landsat images from Jambi Province in Sumatra/Indonesia covering a chronosequence of oil palm plantations to study the 20 - 25 years life cycle of oil palm plantations and its relation with biophysical variables. Our results show large differences between the surface temperature of young oil palm plantations and forest (up to 9.5 ± 1.5 °C) indicating that the surface temperature is raised substantially after the establishment of oil palm plantations following the removal of forests. During the oil palm plantation lifecycle the surface temperature differences gradually decreases and approaches zero around an oil palm plantation age of 10 years. Similarly, NDVI increases and the albedo decreases approaching typical values of forests. Our results show that in order to assess the full climate effects of oil palm expansion biophysical processes play an important role and the full life cycle of oil palm plantations need to be considered.

  14. Variation of Biophysical Parameters of the Skin with Age, Gender, and Body Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alireza Firooz

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Understanding the physiological, chemical, and biophysical characteristics of the skin helps us to arrange a proper approach to the management of skin diseases. Objective. The aim of this study was to measure 6 biophysical characteristics of normal skin (sebum content, hydration, transepidermal water loss (TEWL, erythema index, melanin index, and elasticity in a normal population and assess the effect of sex, age, and body location on them. Methods. Fifty healthy volunteers in 5 age groups (5 males and females in each were enrolled in this study. A multifunctional skin physiology monitor (Courage & Khazaka electronic GmbH, Germany was used to measure skin sebum content, hydration, TEWL, erythema index, melanin index, and elasticity in 8 different locations of the body. Results. There were significant differences between the hydration, melanin index, and elasticity of different age groups. Regarding the locations, forehead had the highest melanin index, where as palm had the lowest value. The mean values of erythema index and melanin index and TEWL were significantly higher in males and anatomic location was a significant independent factor for all of 6 measured parameters. Conclusion. Several biophysical properties of the skin vary among different gender, age groups, and body locations.

  15. A biotic video game smart phone kit for formal and informal biophysics education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Honesty; Lee, Seung Ah; Riedel-Kruse, Ingmar

    2015-03-01

    Novel ways for formal and informal biophysics education are important. We present a low-cost biotic game design kit that incorporates microbial organisms into an interactive gaming experience: A 3D-printable microscope containing four LEDs controlled by a joystick enable human players to provide directional light stimuli to the motile single-celled organism Euglena gracilis. These cellular behaviors are displayed on the integrated smart phone. Real time cell-tracking couples these cells into interactive biotic video game play, i.e., the human player steers Euglena to play soccer with virtual balls and goals. The player's learning curve in mastering this fun game is intrinsically coupled to develop a deeper knowledge about Euglena's cell morphology and the biophysics of its phototactic behavior. This kit is dual educational - via construction and via play - and it provides an engaging theme for a formal biophysics devices class as well as to be presented in informal outreach activities; its low cost and open soft- and hardware should enable wide adoption.

  16. Final report for Conference Support Grant "From Computational Biophysics to Systems Biology - CBSB12"

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hansmann, Ulrich H.E.

    2012-07-02

    This report summarizes the outcome of the international workshop From Computational Biophysics to Systems Biology (CBSB12) which was held June 3-5, 2012, at the University of Tennessee Conference Center in Knoxville, TN, and supported by DOE through the Conference Support Grant 120174. The purpose of CBSB12 was to provide a forum for the interaction between a data-mining interested systems biology community and a simulation and first-principle oriented computational biophysics/biochemistry community. CBSB12 was the sixth in a series of workshops of the same name organized in recent years, and the second that has been held in the USA. As in previous years, it gave researchers from physics, biology, and computer science an opportunity to acquaint each other with current trends in computational biophysics and systems biology, to explore venues of cooperation, and to establish together a detailed understanding of cells at a molecular level. The conference grant of $10,000 was used to cover registration fees and provide travel fellowships to selected students and postdoctoral scientists. By educating graduate students and providing a forum for young scientists to perform research into the working of cells at a molecular level, the workshop adds to DOE's mission of paving the way to exploit the abilities of living systems to capture, store and utilize energy.

  17. Identification of Optimal Hyperspectral Bands for Estimation of Rice Biophysical Parameters

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Fu-Min Wang; Jing-Feng Huang; Xiu-Zhen Wang

    2008-01-01

    The present study aims to identify the narrow spectral bands that are most suitable for characterizing rice biophysical parameters. The data used for this study come from ground-level hyperspectral reflectance measurements for five rice species at three levels of nitrogen fertilization during the growing period. Reflectance was measured in discrete narrow bands between 350 and 2 500 nm. Observed rice biophysical parameters included leaf area index (LAI), wet biomass and dry biomass. The stepwise regression method was applied to identify the optimal bands for rice biophysical parameter estimation. This research indicated that combinations of four narrow bands in stepwise regression models explained 69% to 83% variability for LAI, 56% to 73% for aboveground wet biomass and 70% to 83% for leaf wet biomass. An overwhelming proportion of rice information was in a particular portion of near infrared (NIR) (1 100-1 150 nm), red-edge (700-750 nm), and a longer portion of green (550-600 nm). These were followed by the moisture-sensitive NIR (950-1 000 nm), the intermediate portion of shortwave infrared (SWIR) (1 650-1 700 nm), and another portion of NIR (t 000-1 050 nm).

  18. Lunar laboratory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Keaton, P.W.; Duke, M.B.

    1986-01-01

    An international research laboratory can be established on the Moon in the early years of the 21st Century. It can be built using the transportation system now envisioned by NASA, which includes a space station for Earth orbital logistics and orbital transfer vehicles for Earth-Moon transportation. A scientific laboratory on the Moon would permit extended surface and subsurface geological exploration; long-duration experiments defining the lunar environment and its modification by surface activity; new classes of observations in astronomy; space plasma and fundamental physics experiments; and lunar resource development. The discovery of a lunar source for propellants may reduce the cost of constructing large permanent facilities in space and enhance other space programs such as Mars exploration. 29 refs.

  19. Virtual Laboratories

    CERN Document Server

    Hut, P

    2006-01-01

    At the frontier of most areas in science, computer simulations play a central role. The traditional division of natural science into experimental and theoretical investigations is now completely outdated. Instead, theory, simulation, and experimentation form three equally essential aspects, each with its own unique flavor and challenges. Yet, education in computational science is still lagging far behind, and the number of text books in this area is minuscule compared to the many text books on theoretical and experimental science. As a result, many researchers still carry out simulations in a haphazard way, without properly setting up the computational equivalent of a well equipped laboratory. The art of creating such a virtual laboratory, while providing proper extensibility and documentation, is still in its infancy. A new approach is described here, Open Knowledge, as an extension of the notion of Open Source software. Besides open source code, manuals, and primers, an open knowledge project provides simul...

  20. Laboratory investigations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Our task is to design mined-repository systems that will adequately secure high-level nuclear waste for at least 10,000 yr and that will be mechanically stable for 50 to 100-yr periods of retrievability during which mistakes could be corrected and a valuable source of energy could be reclaimed, should national policy on the reprocessing of spent fuel ever change. The only credible path for the escape of radionuclides from the repository to the biosphere is through ground-water, and in hard rock, bulk permeability is largely governed by natural and artificial fracture systems. Catastrophic failure of an excavation in hard rock is likely to occur at the weakest links - the discontinuities in the rock mass that is perturbed first by mining and then by radiogenic heating. The laboratory can contribute precise measurements of the pertinent thermomechanical, hydrological and chemical properties and improve our understanding of the fundamental processes through careful experiments under well controlled conditions that simulate the prototype environment. Thus laboratory investigations are necessary, but they are not sufficient, for conventional sample sizes are small relative to natural defects like joints - i.e., the rock mass is not a continuum - and test durations are short compared to those that predictive modeling must take into account. Laboratory investigators can contribute substantially more useful data if they are provided facilities for testing large specimens(say one cubic meter) and for creep testing of all candidate host rocks. Even so, extrapolations of laboratory data to the field in neither space nor time are valid without the firm theoretical foundations yet to be built. Meanwhile in-situ measurements of structure-sensitive physical properties and access to direct observations of rock-mass character will be absolutely necessary

  1. Culham Laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The report contains summaries of work carried out under the following headings: fusion research experiments; U.K. contribution to the JET project; supporting studies; theoretical plasma physics, computational physics and computing; fusion reactor studies; engineering and technology; contract research; external relations; staff, finance and services. Appendices cover main characteristics of Culham fusion experiments, staff, extra-mural projects supported by Culham Laboratory, and a list of papers written by Culham staff. (U.K.)

  2. Activity and biophysical inhibition resistance of a novel synthetic lung surfactant containing Super-Mini-B DATK peptide

    OpenAIRE

    Notter, Robert H.; Wang, Zhengdong; Walther, Frans J

    2016-01-01

    Background/objectives. This study examines the surface activity, resistance to biophysical inhibition, and pulmonary efficacy of a synthetic lung surfactant containing glycerophospholipids combined with Super Mini-B (S-MB) DATK, a novel and stable molecular mimic of lung surfactant protein (SP)-B. The objective of the work is to test whether S-MB DATK synthetic surfactant has favorable biophysical and physiological activity for future use in treating surfactant deficiency or dysfunction in lu...

  3. New tools to study biophysical properties of single molecules and single cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Márcio S. Rocha

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available We present a review on two new tools to study biophysical properties of single molecules and single cells. A laser incident through a high numerical aperture microscope objective can trap small dielectric particles near the focus. This arrangement is named optical tweezers. This technique has the advantage to permit manipulation of a single individual object. We use optical tweezers to measure the entropic elasticity of a single DNA molecule and its interaction with the drug Psoralen. Optical tweezers are also used to hold a kidney cell MDCK away from the substrate to allow precise volume measurements of this single cell during an osmotic shock. This procedure allows us to obtain information about membrane water permeability and regulatory volume increase. Defocusing microscopy is a recent technique invented in our laboratory, which allows the observation of transparent objects, by simply defocusing the microscope in a controlled way. Our physical model of a defocused microscope shows that the image contrast observed in this case is proportional to the defocus distance and to the curvature of the transparent object. Defocusing microscopy is very useful to study motility and mechanical properties of cells. We show here the application of defocusing microscopy to measurements of macrophage surface fluctuations and their influence on phagocytosis.Apresentamos uma revisão de duas novas técnicas para estudar propriedades biofísicas de moléculas únicas e células únicas. Um laser incidindo em uma objetiva de microscópio de grande abertura numérica é capaz de aprisionar pequenas partículas dielétricas na região próxima ao foco. Este aparato é chamado de pinça óptica. Esta técnica tem a grande vantagem de permitir a manipulação de um objeto individual. Usamos a pinça óptica para medir a elasticidade entrópica de uma molécula única de DNA em sua interação com o fármaco Psoralen. A pinça óptica também é usada para segurar

  4. Photobiology Research Laboratory (Fact Sheet)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    2012-06-01

    This fact sheet provides information about Photobiology Research Laboratory capabilities and applications at NREL. The photobiology group's research is in four main areas: (1) Comprehensive studies of fuel-producing photosynthetic, fermentative, and chemolithotrophic model microorganisms; (2) Characterization and engineering of redox enzymes and proteins for fuel production; (3) Genetic and pathway engineering of model organisms to improve production of hydrogen and hydrocarbon fuels; and (4) Studies of nanosystems using biological and non-biological materials in hybrid generation. NREL's photobiology research capabilities include: (1) Controlled and automated photobioreactors and fermenters for growing microorganisms under a variety of environmental conditions; (2) High-and medium-throughput screening of H{sub 2}-producing organisms; (3) Homologous and heterologous expression, purification, and biochemical/biophysical characterization of redox enzymes and proteins; (4) Qualitative and quantitative analyses of gases, metabolites, carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins; (5) Genetic and pathway engineering and development of novel genetic toolboxes; and (6) Design and spectroscopic characterization of enzyme-based biofuel cells and energy conversion nanodevices.

  5. Effects of LiDAR point density, sampling size and height threshold on estimation accuracy of crop biophysical parameters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Shezhou; Chen, Jing M; Wang, Cheng; Xi, Xiaohuan; Zeng, Hongcheng; Peng, Dailiang; Li, Dong

    2016-05-30

    Vegetation leaf area index (LAI), height, and aboveground biomass are key biophysical parameters. Corn is an important and globally distributed crop, and reliable estimations of these parameters are essential for corn yield forecasting, health monitoring and ecosystem modeling. Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) is considered an effective technology for estimating vegetation biophysical parameters. However, the estimation accuracies of these parameters are affected by multiple factors. In this study, we first estimated corn LAI, height and biomass (R2 = 0.80, 0.874 and 0.838, respectively) using the original LiDAR data (7.32 points/m2), and the results showed that LiDAR data could accurately estimate these biophysical parameters. Second, comprehensive research was conducted on the effects of LiDAR point density, sampling size and height threshold on the estimation accuracy of LAI, height and biomass. Our findings indicated that LiDAR point density had an important effect on the estimation accuracy for vegetation biophysical parameters, however, high point density did not always produce highly accurate estimates, and reduced point density could deliver reasonable estimation results. Furthermore, the results showed that sampling size and height threshold were additional key factors that affect the estimation accuracy of biophysical parameters. Therefore, the optimal sampling size and the height threshold should be determined to improve the estimation accuracy of biophysical parameters. Our results also implied that a higher LiDAR point density, larger sampling size and height threshold were required to obtain accurate corn LAI estimation when compared with height and biomass estimations. In general, our results provide valuable guidance for LiDAR data acquisition and estimation of vegetation biophysical parameters using LiDAR data. PMID:27410085

  6. Linking biophysical models and public preferences for ecosystem service assessments: a case study for the Southern Rocky Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bagstad, Kenneth J.; Reed, James; Semmens, Darius J.; Sherrouse, Ben C.; Troy, Austin

    2016-01-01

    Through extensive research, ecosystem services have been mapped using both survey-based and biophysical approaches, but comparative mapping of public values and those quantified using models has been lacking. In this paper, we mapped hot and cold spots for perceived and modeled ecosystem services by synthesizing results from a social-values mapping study of residents living near the Pike–San Isabel National Forest (PSI), located in the Southern Rocky Mountains, with corresponding biophysically modeled ecosystem services. Social-value maps for the PSI were developed using the Social Values for Ecosystem Services tool, providing statistically modeled continuous value surfaces for 12 value types, including aesthetic, biodiversity, and life-sustaining values. Biophysically modeled maps of carbon sequestration and storage, scenic viewsheds, sediment regulation, and water yield were generated using the Artificial Intelligence for Ecosystem Services tool. Hotspots for both perceived and modeled services were disproportionately located within the PSI’s wilderness areas. Additionally, we used regression analysis to evaluate spatial relationships between perceived biodiversity and cultural ecosystem services and corresponding biophysical model outputs. Our goal was to determine whether publicly valued locations for aesthetic, biodiversity, and life-sustaining values relate meaningfully to results from corresponding biophysical ecosystem service models. We found weak relationships between perceived and biophysically modeled services, indicating that public perception of ecosystem service provisioning regions is limited. We believe that biophysical and social approaches to ecosystem service mapping can serve as methodological complements that can advance ecosystem services-based resource management, benefitting resource managers by showing potential locations of synergy or conflict between areas supplying ecosystem services and those valued by the public.

  7. Biophysics Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panijpan, Bhinyo

    2010-07-01

    Many topics in basic physics are presented to the students based on examples that they find too intangible, uninteresting and unrelated to the real world. We propose here some examples from the biological world that can equally be used to illustrate seemingly arcane physical principles and laws [1] [2]. Energetic aspects of the Krebs Cycle, the Calvin Cycle, and the ion pump can make learning of thermodynamics and electricity much more realistic. The contraction relaxation cycle of a muscle sarcomere can be used to represent that of a machine "photographs" of the sarcomere and large biopolymers such as ordered protein and nucleic acid structures illustrate Bragg's Law about regular submicron distances as well as those from crystals of inorganic salts. Movements of nanostructures of the proton pump subunits and sliding filaments are just as good for calculation of the moment of inertia and mechanical energy involved. Transport of sugars made from photosynthesis in the leaf into the fruit can pose problems about concentration gradient very realistically. Aspect about light such as absorption and fluorescence of biological molecules such as chlorophylls and rhodopsins should make such phenomena more interesting and real. Interference of visible light from feathers and scales should also be used to showchanges of apparent colors and patterns when viewed from different angles. Circular dichroism and streaming birefringence of biological macromolecules should make students appreciate polarization better.

  8. Membrane Biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Ashrafuzzaman, Mohammad

    2013-01-01

    Physics, mathematics and chemistry all play a vital role in understanding the true nature and functioning of biological membranes, key elements of living processes. Besides simple spectroscopic observations and electrical measurements of membranes we address in this book the phenomena of coexistence and independent existence of different membrane components using various theoretical approaches. This treatment will be helpful for readers who want to understand biological processes by applying both simple observations and fundamental scientific analysis. It provides a deep understanding of the causes and effects of processes inside membranes, and will thus eventually open new doors for high-level pharmaceutical approaches towards fighting membrane- and cell-related diseases.

  9. Edelfosine and miltefosine effects on lipid raft properties: membrane biophysics in cell death by antitumor lipids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro, Bruno M; Fedorov, Aleksander; Hornillos, Valentin; Delgado, Javier; Acuña, A Ulises; Mollinedo, Faustino; Prieto, Manuel

    2013-07-01

    Edelfosine (1-O-octadecyl-2-O-methyl-sn-glycero-phosphocholine) and miltefosine (hexadecylphosphocholine) are synthetic alkylphospholipids (ALPs) that are reported to selectively accumulate in tumor cell membranes, inducing Fas clustering and activation on lipid rafts, triggering apoptosis. However, the exact mechanism by which these lipids elicit these events is still not fully understood. Recent studies propose that their mode of action might be related with alterations of lipid rafts biophysical properties caused by these lipid drugs. To achieve a clear understanding of this mechanism, we studied the effects of pharmacologically relevant amounts of edelfosine and miltefosine in the properties of model and cellular membranes. The influence of these molecules on membrane order, lateral organization, and lipid rafts molar fraction and size were studied by steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence methods, Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET), confocal and fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM). We found that the global membrane and lipid rafts biophysical properties of both model and cellular membranes were not significantly affected by both the ALPs. Nonetheless, in model membranes, a mild increase in membrane fluidity induced by both alkyl lipids was detected, although this effect was more noticeable for edelfosine than miltefosine. This absence of drastic alterations shows for the first time that ALPs mode of action is unlikely to be directly linked to alterations of lipid rafts biophysical properties caused by these drugs. The biological implications of this result are discussed in the context of ALPs effects on lipid metabolism, mitochondria homeostasis modulation, and their relationship with tumor cell death.

  10. Photobiology of Symbiodinium revisited: bio-physical and bio-optical signatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hennige, S. J.; Suggett, D. J.; Warner, M. E.; McDougall, K. E.; Smith, D. J.

    2009-03-01

    Light is often the most abundant resource within the nutrient-poor waters surrounding coral reefs. Consequently, zooxanthellae ( Symbiodinium spp.) must continually photoacclimate to optimise productivity and ensure coral success. In situ coral photobiology is becoming dominated by routine assessments using state-of-the-art non-invasive bio-optical or chlorophyll a fluorescence (bio-physical) techniques. Multiple genetic types of Symbiodinium are now known to exist; however, little focus has been given as to how these types differ in terms of characteristics that are observable using these techniques. Therefore, this investigation aimed to revisit and expand upon a pivotal study by Iglesias-Prieto and Trench (1994) by comparing the photoacclimation characteristics of different Symbiodinium types based on their bio-physical (chlorophyll a fluorescence, reaction centre counts) and bio-optical (optical absorption, pigment concentrations) ‘signatures’. Signatures described here are unique to Symbiodinium type and describe phenotypic responses to set conditions, and hence are not suitable to describe taxonomic structure of in hospite Symbiodinium communities. In this study, eight Symbiodinium types from clades and sub-clades (A-B, F) were grown under two PFDs (Photon Flux Density) and examined. The photoacclimation response by Symbiodinium was highly variable between algal types for all bio-physical and for many bio-optical measurements; however, a general preference to modifying reaction centre content over effective antennae-absorption was observed. Certain bio-optically derived patterns, such as light absorption, were independent of algal type and, when considered per photosystem, were matched by reaction centre stoichiometry. Only by better understanding genotypic and phenotypic variability between Symbiodinium types can future studies account for the relative taxonomic and physiological contribution by Symbiodinium to coral acclimation.

  11. Quality Saving Mechanisms of Mitochondria during Aging in a Fully Time-Dependent Computational Biophysical Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mellem, Daniel; Fischer, Frank; Jaspers, Sören; Wenck, Horst; Rübhausen, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondria are essential for the energy production of eukaryotic cells. During aging mitochondria run through various processes which change their quality in terms of activity, health and metabolic supply. In recent years, many of these processes such as fission and fusion of mitochondria, mitophagy, mitochondrial biogenesis and energy consumption have been subject of research. Based on numerous experimental insights, it was possible to qualify mitochondrial behaviour in computational simulations. Here, we present a new biophysical model based on the approach of Figge et al. in 2012. We introduce exponential decay and growth laws for each mitochondrial process to derive its time-dependent probability during the aging of cells. All mitochondrial processes of the original model are mathematically and biophysically redefined and additional processes are implemented: Mitochondrial fission and fusion is separated into a metabolic outer-membrane part and a protein-related inner-membrane part, a quality-dependent threshold for mitophagy and mitochondrial biogenesis is introduced and processes for activity-dependent internal oxidative stress as well as mitochondrial repair mechanisms are newly included. Our findings reveal a decrease of mitochondrial quality and a fragmentation of the mitochondrial network during aging. Additionally, the model discloses a quality increasing mechanism due to the interplay of the mitophagy and biogenesis cycle and the fission and fusion cycle of mitochondria. It is revealed that decreased mitochondrial repair can be a quality saving process in aged cells. Furthermore, the model finds strategies to sustain the quality of the mitochondrial network in cells with high production rates of reactive oxygen species due to large energy demands. Hence, the model adds new insights to biophysical mechanisms of mitochondrial aging and provides novel understandings of the interdependency of mitochondrial processes. PMID:26771181

  12. From autopoiesis to neurophenomenology: Francisco Varela's exploration of the biophysics of being.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudrauf, David; Lutz, Antoine; Cosmelli, Diego; Lachaux, Jean-Philippe; Le Van Quyen, Michel

    2003-01-01

    This paper reviews in detail Francisco Varela's work on subjectivity and consciousness in the biological sciences. His original approach to this "hard problem" presents a subjectivity that is radically intertwined with its biological and physical roots. It must be understood within the framework of his theory of a concrete, embodied dynamics, grounded in his general theory of autonomous systems. Through concepts and paradigms such as biological autonomy, embodiment and neurophenomenology, the article explores the multiple levels of circular causality assumed by Varela to play a fundamental role in the emergence of human experience. The concept of biological autonomy provides the necessary and sufficient conditions for characterizing biological life and identity as an emergent and circular self-producing process. Embodiment provides a systemic and dynamical framework for understanding how a cognitive self--a mind--can arise in an organism in the midst of its operational cycles of internal regulation and ongoing sensorimotor coupling. Global subjective properties can emerge at different levels from the interactions of components and can reciprocally constrain local processes through an ongoing, recursive morphodynamics. Neurophenomenology is a supplementary step in the study of consciousness. Through a rigorous method, it advocates the careful examination of experience with first-person methodologies. It attempts to create heuristic mutual constraints between biophysical data and data produced by accounts of subjective experience. The aim is to explicitly ground the active and disciplined insight the subject has about his/her experience in a biophysical emergent process. Finally, we discuss Varela's essential contribution to our understanding of the generation of consciousness in the framework of what we call his "biophysics of being." PMID:12795206

  13. River bank burrowing by invasive crayfish: Spatial distribution, biophysical controls and biogeomorphic significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faller, Matej; Harvey, Gemma L; Henshaw, Alexander J; Bertoldi, Walter; Bruno, Maria Cristina; England, Judy

    2016-11-01

    Invasive species generate significant global environmental and economic costs and represent a particularly potent threat to freshwater systems. The biogeomorphic impacts of invasive aquatic and riparian species on river processes and landforms remain largely unquantified, but have the potential to generate significant sediment management issues within invaded catchments. Several species of invasive (non-native) crayfish are known to burrow into river banks and visual evidence of river bank damage is generating public concern and media attention. Despite this, there is a paucity of understanding of burrow distribution, biophysical controls and the potential significance of this problem beyond a small number of local studies at heavily impacted sites. This paper presents the first multi-catchment analysis of this phenomenon, combining existing data on biophysical river properties and invasive crayfish observations with purpose-designed field surveys across 103 river reaches to derive key trends. Crayfish burrows were observed on the majority of reaches, but burrowing tended to be patchy in spatial distribution, concentrated in a small proportion (bank biophysical properties than by reach-scale properties, and burrowed banks were more likely to be characterised by cohesive bank material, steeper bank profiles with large areas of bare bank face, often on outer bend locations. Burrow excavation alone has delivered a considerable amount of sediment to invaded river systems in the surveyed sites (3tkm(-1) impacted bank) and this represents a minimum contribution and certainly an underestimate of the absolute yield (submerged burrows were not recorded). Furthermore, burrowing was associated with bank profiles that were either actively eroding or exposed to fluvial action and/or mass failure processes, providing the first quantitative evidence that invasive crayfish may cause or accelerate river bank instability and erosion in invaded catchments beyond the scale of

  14. Modeling crop water use in an irrigated maize cropland using a biophysical process-based model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Risheng; Kang, Shaozhong; Du, Taisheng; Hao, Xinmei; Tong, Ling

    2015-10-01

    Accurate modeling of crop water use or evapotranspiration (ET) is needed to understand the hydrologic cycle and improve water use efficiency. Biophysical process-based multilayer models can capture details of the nonlinear interaction between microclimate and physiology within the canopy and thus accurately simulate ET. In this study, we extended a process-based multilayer model, ACASA, which explicitly simulated many of the nonlinear biophysical processes within each of ten crop canopy sublayers and then integrated to represent the complete crop canopy. Based on the original ACASA model, we made the improved modifications including four added modules (C4 crop photosynthesis, water stress response of stomatal conductance, crop morphological changes, and heterogeneous root water uptake), and two adjusted calculation procedures (soil evaporation resistance and hydraulic characteristic parameters). Key processes were parameterized for the improved ACASA model using observations. The simulated canopy ET was validated using eddy covariance measurements over an irrigated maize field in an arid inland region of northwest China. The improved ACASA model predicted maize ET for both half-hourly and daily time-scales. The improved model also predicted the reduction in maize ET under the condition of soil water deficit. Soil evaporation, an important component of maize ET, was also satisfactorily simulated in the improved model. Compared to the original ACASA model, the improved model yielded an improved estimation of maize ET. Using the improved model, we found that maize ET was nonlinearly affected by changes in leaf area index and photosynthetic capacity through canopy conductance. In general, the improved ACASA model, a biophysical process-based multilayer model, can be used to diagnose and predict crop ET, and draw some insights into the nonlinear interactions between crop canopy and ambient environment.

  15. Quality Saving Mechanisms of Mitochondria during Aging in a Fully Time-Dependent Computational Biophysical Model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Mellem

    Full Text Available Mitochondria are essential for the energy production of eukaryotic cells. During aging mitochondria run through various processes which change their quality in terms of activity, health and metabolic supply. In recent years, many of these processes such as fission and fusion of mitochondria, mitophagy, mitochondrial biogenesis and energy consumption have been subject of research. Based on numerous experimental insights, it was possible to qualify mitochondrial behaviour in computational simulations. Here, we present a new biophysical model based on the approach of Figge et al. in 2012. We introduce exponential decay and growth laws for each mitochondrial process to derive its time-dependent probability during the aging of cells. All mitochondrial processes of the original model are mathematically and biophysically redefined and additional processes are implemented: Mitochondrial fission and fusion is separated into a metabolic outer-membrane part and a protein-related inner-membrane part, a quality-dependent threshold for mitophagy and mitochondrial biogenesis is introduced and processes for activity-dependent internal oxidative stress as well as mitochondrial repair mechanisms are newly included. Our findings reveal a decrease of mitochondrial quality and a fragmentation of the mitochondrial network during aging. Additionally, the model discloses a quality increasing mechanism due to the interplay of the mitophagy and biogenesis cycle and the fission and fusion cycle of mitochondria. It is revealed that decreased mitochondrial repair can be a quality saving process in aged cells. Furthermore, the model finds strategies to sustain the quality of the mitochondrial network in cells with high production rates of reactive oxygen species due to large energy demands. Hence, the model adds new insights to biophysical mechanisms of mitochondrial aging and provides novel understandings of the interdependency of mitochondrial processes.

  16. Quality Saving Mechanisms of Mitochondria during Aging in a Fully Time-Dependent Computational Biophysical Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mellem, Daniel; Fischer, Frank; Jaspers, Sören; Wenck, Horst; Rübhausen, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondria are essential for the energy production of eukaryotic cells. During aging mitochondria run through various processes which change their quality in terms of activity, health and metabolic supply. In recent years, many of these processes such as fission and fusion of mitochondria, mitophagy, mitochondrial biogenesis and energy consumption have been subject of research. Based on numerous experimental insights, it was possible to qualify mitochondrial behaviour in computational simulations. Here, we present a new biophysical model based on the approach of Figge et al. in 2012. We introduce exponential decay and growth laws for each mitochondrial process to derive its time-dependent probability during the aging of cells. All mitochondrial processes of the original model are mathematically and biophysically redefined and additional processes are implemented: Mitochondrial fission and fusion is separated into a metabolic outer-membrane part and a protein-related inner-membrane part, a quality-dependent threshold for mitophagy and mitochondrial biogenesis is introduced and processes for activity-dependent internal oxidative stress as well as mitochondrial repair mechanisms are newly included. Our findings reveal a decrease of mitochondrial quality and a fragmentation of the mitochondrial network during aging. Additionally, the model discloses a quality increasing mechanism due to the interplay of the mitophagy and biogenesis cycle and the fission and fusion cycle of mitochondria. It is revealed that decreased mitochondrial repair can be a quality saving process in aged cells. Furthermore, the model finds strategies to sustain the quality of the mitochondrial network in cells with high production rates of reactive oxygen species due to large energy demands. Hence, the model adds new insights to biophysical mechanisms of mitochondrial aging and provides novel understandings of the interdependency of mitochondrial processes.

  17. Quality Saving Mechanisms of Mitochondria during Aging in a Fully Time-Dependent Computational Biophysical Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mellem, Daniel; Fischer, Frank; Jaspers, Sören; Wenck, Horst; Rübhausen, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondria are essential for the energy production of eukaryotic cells. During aging mitochondria run through various processes which change their quality in terms of activity, health and metabolic supply. In recent years, many of these processes such as fission and fusion of mitochondria, mitophagy, mitochondrial biogenesis and energy consumption have been subject of research. Based on numerous experimental insights, it was possible to qualify mitochondrial behaviour in computational simulations. Here, we present a new biophysical model based on the approach of Figge et al. in 2012. We introduce exponential decay and growth laws for each mitochondrial process to derive its time-dependent probability during the aging of cells. All mitochondrial processes of the original model are mathematically and biophysically redefined and additional processes are implemented: Mitochondrial fission and fusion is separated into a metabolic outer-membrane part and a protein-related inner-membrane part, a quality-dependent threshold for mitophagy and mitochondrial biogenesis is introduced and processes for activity-dependent internal oxidative stress as well as mitochondrial repair mechanisms are newly included. Our findings reveal a decrease of mitochondrial quality and a fragmentation of the mitochondrial network during aging. Additionally, the model discloses a quality increasing mechanism due to the interplay of the mitophagy and biogenesis cycle and the fission and fusion cycle of mitochondria. It is revealed that decreased mitochondrial repair can be a quality saving process in aged cells. Furthermore, the model finds strategies to sustain the quality of the mitochondrial network in cells with high production rates of reactive oxygen species due to large energy demands. Hence, the model adds new insights to biophysical mechanisms of mitochondrial aging and provides novel understandings of the interdependency of mitochondrial processes. PMID:26771181

  18. Mesoscale simulations of two model systems in biophysics: from red blood cells to DNAs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Zhangli; Chen, Yeng-Long; Lu, Huijie; Pan, Zehao; Chang, Hsueh-Chia

    2015-12-01

    Computational modeling has become increasingly important in biophysics, but the great challenge in numerical simulations due to the multiscale feature of biological systems limits the capability of modeling in making discoveries in biology. Innovative multiscale modeling approaches are desired to bridge different scales from nucleic acids and proteins to cells and tissues. Although all-atom molecular dynamics has been successfully applied in many microscale biological processes such as protein folding, it is still prohibitively expensive for studying macroscale problems such as biophysics of cells and tissues. On the other hand, continuum-based modeling has become a mature procedure for analysis and design in many engineering fields, but new insights for biological systems in the microscale are limited when molecular details are missing in continuum-based modeling. In this context, mesoscale modeling approaches such as Langevin dynamics, lattice Boltzmann method, and dissipative particle dynamics have become popular by simultaneously incorporating molecular interactions and long-range hydrodynamic interactions, providing insights to properties on longer time and length scales than molecular dynamics. In this review, we summarized several mesoscale simulation approaches for studying two model systems in biophysics: red blood cells (RBCs) and deoxyribonucleic acids (DNAs). The RBC is a model system for cell mechanics and biological membranes, while the DNA represents a model system for biopolymers. We introduced the motivations of studying these problems and presented the key features of different mesoscale methods. Furthermore, we described the latest progresses in these methods and highlighted the major findings for modeling RBCs and DNAs. Finally, we also discussed the challenges and potential issues of different approaches.

  19. Biophysical and Biochemical Studies of the FMDV and EMCV IRES Elements

    OpenAIRE

    Onuegbu, Anthonia Chinwe

    2013-01-01

    The biophysical properties of the hairpin loop structures in the FMDV and EMCV IRES domains three and I, J were studied using UV melting and Circular Dichroism studies. The apical region consists of the hammerhead region that is made up of hairpin loop structures such as the GNRA motifs in the 16mer hairpin loop, (FMDV and EMCV), the heptaloop 15mer in the FMDV and 17mer in the EMCV, The RAAA motif in the 11mer (FMDV and EMCV). The empirical calculations on the folding of the RNA motifs were ...

  20. Covariance of biophysical data with digital topographic and land use maps over the FIFE site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, F. W.; Schimel, D. S.; Friedl, M. A.; Michaelsen, J. C.; Kittel, T. G. F.; Dubayah, R.; Dozier, J.

    1992-11-01

    Sampling design is critical in locating ground sampling stations for large-scale climatological field experiments. In the stratified sampling design adopted for the First International Satellite Land Surface Climatology Project (ISLSCP) Field Experiment (FIFE), the study region was stratified into 14 different terrain units based on land use/land cover and topographic variables that were hypothesized to have a strong influence on surface biophysical properties. Digital terrain maps were produced to facilitate ground data integration and extrapolation. This paper describes the biophysical stratification of the FIFE site, implementation of the stratification using geographic information system (GIS) techniques, and validation of the stratification with respect to field measurements of biomass, soil moisture, Bowen ratio (β), and the greenness vegetation index (GVI) derived from thematic mapper satellite data. Maps of burning and topographic position were significantly associated with variation in biomass, GVI, and β. The effects of burning and topography were stronger for the Konza Prairie Long-Term Ecological Research (KPLTER) site than for the rest of the FIFE site, where cattle grazing was a major confounding effect. The stratified design did not appreciably change the estimated site-wide means for surface climate parameters but accounted for between 25 and 45% of the sample variance depending on the variable. The design was weakened by undersampling of several strata, by high within-station variance in soil and vegetation data, and by failure to account for diverse land management practices on private lands surrounding KPLTER. We recommend that future large-scale climatological studies include the development of a digital terrain data base well in advance of field campaigns and that multitemporal imagery be used to obtain preliminary estimates of spatial and temporal variance in surface biophysical properties. We also recommend that sampling for the most

  1. Biophysical Insights into the Inhibitory Mechanism of Non-Nucleoside HIV-1 Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Sluis-Cremer

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available HIV-1 reverse transcriptase (RT plays a central role in HIV infection. Current United States Federal Drug Administration (USFDA-approved antiretroviral therapies can include one of five approved non-nucleoside RT inhibitors (NNRTIs, which are potent inhibitors of RT activity. Despite their crucial clinical role in treating and preventing HIV-1 infection, their mechanism of action remains elusive. In this review, we introduce RT and highlight major advances from experimental and computational biophysical experiments toward an understanding of RT function and the inhibitory mechanism(s of NNRTIs.

  2. Toward Extreme Biophysics: Deciphering the Infrared Response of Biomolecular Solutions at High Pressures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imoto, Sho; Kibies, Patrick; Rosin, Christopher; Winter, Roland; Kast, Stefan M; Marx, Dominik

    2016-08-01

    Biophysics under extreme conditions is the fundamental platform for scrutinizing life in unusual habitats, such as those in the deep sea or continental subsurfaces, but also for putative extraterrestrial organisms. Therefore, an important thermodynamic variable to explore is pressure. It is shown that the combination of infrared spectroscopy with simulation is an exquisite approach for unraveling the intricate pressure response of the solvation pattern of TMAO in water, which is expected to be transferable to biomolecules in their native solvent. Pressure-enhanced hydrogen bonding was found for TMAO in water. TMAO is a molecule known to stabilize proteins against pressure-induced denaturation in deep-sea organisms. PMID:27351995

  3. Fluctuation theory of solutions applications in chemistry, chemical engineering, and biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Smith, Paul E

    2013-01-01

    There are essentially two theories of solutions that can be considered exact: the McMillan-Mayer theory and Fluctuation Solution Theory (FST). The first is mostly limited to solutes at low concentrations, while FST has no such issue. It is an exact theory that can be applied to any stable solution regardless of the number of components and their concentrations, and the types of molecules and their sizes. Fluctuation Theory of Solutions: Applications in Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, and Biophysics outlines the general concepts and theoretical basis of FST and provides a range of applications

  4. Physical Sciences Laboratory (PSL)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — PNNL's Physical Sciences Laboratory (PSL) houses 22 research laboratories for conducting a wide-range of research including catalyst formulation, chemical analysis,...

  5. Bio Engineering Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Description/History: Chemistry and biology laboratories The Bio Engineering Laboratory (BeL) is theonly full spectrum biotechnology capability within the Department...

  6. Distributed Energy Technology Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Distributed Energy Technologies Laboratory (DETL) is an extension of the power electronics testing capabilities of the Photovoltaic System Evaluation Laboratory...

  7. FOOTWEAR PERFORMANCE LABORATORY

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — This laboratory provides biomechanical and physical analyses for both military and commercial footwear. The laboratory contains equipment that is integral to the us...

  8. Laboratory evaluation on the sensitivity and specificity of a novel and rapid detection method for malaria diagnosis based on magneto-optical technology (MOT)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    P.F. Mens; R.J. Matelon; B.Y.M. Nour; D.M. Newman; H.D.F.H. Schallig

    2010-01-01

    Background: This study describes the laboratory evaluation of a novel diagnostic platform for malaria. The Magneto Optical Test (MOT) is based on the bio-physical detection of haemozoin in clinical samples. Having an assay time of around one minute, it offers the potential of high throughput screeni

  9. Large-Scale Overexpression and Purification of ADARs from Saccharomyces cerevisiae for Biophysical and Biochemical Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macbeth, Mark R.; Bass, Brenda L.

    2008-01-01

    Many biochemical and biophysical analyses of enzymes require quantities of protein that are difficult to obtain from expression in an endogenous system. To further complicate matters, native adenosine deaminases that act on RNA (ADARs) are expressed at very low levels, and overexpression of active protein has been unsuccessful in common bacterial systems. Here we describe the plasmid construction, expression, and purification procedures for ADARs overexpressed in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. ADAR expression is controlled by the Gal promoter, which allows for rapid induction of transcription when the yeast are grown in media containing galactose. The ADAR is translated with an N-terminal histidine tag that is cleaved by the tobacco etch virus protease, generating one nonnative glycine residue at the N-terminus of the ADAR protein. ADARs expressed using this system can be purified to homogeneity, are highly active in deaminating RNA, and are produced in quantities (from 3 to 10 mg of pure protein per liter of yeast culture) that are sufficient for most biophysical studies. PMID:17662848

  10. Maximum likelihood estimation of biophysical parameters of synaptic receptors from macroscopic currents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrey eStepanyuk

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Dendritic integration and neuronal firing patterns strongly depend on biophysical properties of synaptic ligand-gated channels. However, precise estimation of biophysical parameters of these channels in their intrinsic environment is complicated and still unresolved problem. Here we describe a novel method based on a maximum likelihood approach that allows to estimate not only the unitary current of synaptic receptor channels but also their multiple conductance levels, kinetic constants, the number of receptors bound with a neurotransmitter and the peak open probability from experimentally feasible number of postsynaptic currents. The new method also improves the accuracy of evaluation of unitary current as compared to the peak-scaled non-stationary fluctuation analysis, leading to a possibility to precisely estimate this important parameter from a few postsynaptic currents recorded in steady-state conditions. Estimation of unitary current with this method is robust even if postsynaptic currents are generated by receptors having different kinetic parameters, the case when peak-scaled non-stationary fluctuation analysis is not applicable. Thus, with the new method, routinely recorded postsynaptic currents could be used to study the properties of synaptic receptors in their native biochemical environment.

  11. Guidance for Large-scale Implementation of Alternate Wetting and Drying: A Biophysical Suitability Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sander, B. O.; Wassmann, R.; Nelson, A.; Palao, L.; Wollenberg, E.; Ishitani, M.

    2014-12-01

    The alternate wetting and drying (AWD) technology for rice production does not only save 15-30% of irrigation water, it also reduces methane emissions by up to 70%. AWD is defined by periodic drying and re-flooding of a rice field. Due to its high mitigation potential and its simplicity to execute this practice AWD has gained a lot of attention in recent years. The Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC) has put AWD high on its agenda and funds a project to guide implementation of this technology in Vietnam, Bangladesh and Colombia. One crucial activity is a biophysical suitability assessment for AWD in the three countries. For this, we analyzed rainfall and soil data as well as potential evapotranspiration to assess if the water balance allows practicing AWD or if precipitation is too high for rice fields to fall dry. In my talk I will outline key factors for a successful large-scale implementation of AWD with a focus on the biophysical suitability assessment. The seasonal suitability maps that we generated highlight priority areas for AWD implementation and guide policy makers to informed decisions about meaningful investments in infrastructure and extension work.

  12. Biophysical regulation of Chlamydia pneumoniae-infected monocyte recruitment to atherosclerotic foci

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evani, Shankar J.; Ramasubramanian, Anand K.

    2016-01-01

    Chlamydia pneumoniae infection is implicated in atherosclerosis although the contributory mechanisms are poorly understood. We hypothesize that C. pneumoniae infection favors the recruitment of monocytes to atherosclerotic foci by altering monocyte biophysics. Primary, fresh human monocytes were infected with C. pneumoniae for 8 h, and the interactions between monocytes and E-selectin or aortic endothelium under flow were characterized by video microscopy and image analysis. The distribution of membrane lipid rafts and adhesion receptors were analyzed by imaging flow cytometry. Infected cells rolled on E-selectin and endothelial surfaces, and this rolling was slower, steady and uniform compared to uninfected cells. Infection decreases cholesterol levels, increases membrane fluidity, disrupts lipid rafts, and redistributes CD44, which is the primary mediator of rolling interactions. Together, these changes translate to higher firm adhesion of infected monocytes on endothelium, which is enhanced in the presence of LDL. Uninfected monocytes treated with LDL or left untreated were used as baseline control. Our results demonstrate that the membrane biophysical changes due to infection and hyperlipidemia are one of the key mechanisms by which C. pneumoniae can exacerbate atherosclerotic pathology. These findings provide a framework to characterize the role of ‘infectious burden’ in the development and progression of atherosclerosis.

  13. Simulation of Tillage Systems Impact on Soil Biophysical Properties Using the SALUS Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luigi Sartori

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available A sustainable land management has been defined as the management system that allows for production, while minimizing risk, maintaining quality of soil and water. Tillage systems can significantly decrease soil carbon storage and influence the soil environment of a crop. Crop growth models can be useful tools in evaluating the impact of different tillage systems on soil biophysical properties and on the growth and final yield of the crops. The objectives of this paper were i to illustrate the SALUS model and its tillage component; ii to evaluate the effects of different tillage systems on water infiltration and time to ponding, iii to simulate the effect of tillage systems on some soil biophysical properties. The SALUS (System Approach to Land Use Sustainability model is designed to simulate continuous crop, soil, water and nutrient conditions under different tillage and crop residues management strategies for multiple years. Predictions of changes in surface residue, bulk density, runoff, drainage and evaporation were consistent with expected behaviours of these parameters as described in the literature. The experiment to estimate the time to ponding curve under different tillage system confirmed the theory and showed the beneficial effects of the residue on soil surface with respect to water infiltration. It also showed that the no-tillage system is a more appropriate system to adopt in areas characterized by high intensity rainfall.

  14. knowledge base model for evaluation of bio-physical tendency of dryland

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    RJANA; MVKHIRE

    2004-01-01

    The present study aims the evaluation of bio-physical characteristics towards soil-water-vegetation stress and a rule is envisaged to assess the degree of temporal changes. The digital rule for assessment is initialized through the index of land Instability (ILI) where the variance indicates the temporal instability of the pixel i.e., smallest land unit. It is assumed that the biophysical characteristic of land is in command of land-dynamics where there is no change in Land Use/Land Cover (LU&LC). The intensity map on tendency of albedo (IALB) assesses the intensity of soil erosion and water stress whereas intensity map on tendency of NDVI (INDVI) appraises the stress on vegetation. The carry-out study covers a part of semiarid Western India. Primarily remote sensing technique, which carries the digital information of land temporally and spatially, is adopted in this paper. A part of the study area is represented using two sets of IRS IA/1B LISS-I data of March with a decadal time domain 0989-1998) as a test area. It is assumed that the soil-water-vegetation stress is maximum during summer(March-April-May) in any tropical belt and decadal data will stretch the possibilitv of climate as well as man-made activity over the land.

  15. NS3 Protease from Hepatitis C Virus: Biophysical Studies on an Intrinsically Disordered Protein Domain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrian Velazquez-Campoy

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available The nonstructural protein 3 (NS3 from the hepatitis C virus (HCV is responsible for processing the non-structural region of the viral precursor polyprotein in infected hepatic cells. NS3 protease activity, located at the N-terminal domain, is a zinc-dependent serine protease. A zinc ion, required for the hydrolytic activity, has been considered as a structural metal ion essential for the structural integrity of the protein. In addition, NS3 interacts with another cofactor, NS4A, an accessory viral protein that induces a conformational change enhancing the hydrolytic activity. Biophysical studies on the isolated protease domain, whose behavior is similar to that of the full-length protein (e.g., catalytic activity, allosteric mechanism and susceptibility to inhibitors, suggest that a considerable global conformational change in the protein is coupled to zinc binding. Zinc binding to NS3 protease can be considered as a folding event, an extreme case of induced-fit binding. Therefore, NS3 protease is an intrinsically (partially disordered protein with a complex conformational landscape due to its inherent plasticity and to the interaction with its different effectors. Here we summarize the results from a detailed biophysical characterization of this enzyme and present new experimental data.

  16. Market research on garment-based "wearables" and biophysical monitoring and a new monitoring method.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultze, Claudia; Burr, Stacey

    2004-01-01

    Technology advancements are foremost on the minds of scientists and developers who are working to overcome the many hurdles associated with bringing consumers the enhanced benefits associated with next generation wearable health systems. Often the technology work takes a front seat to the basic requirements of traditional consumer apparel. The choices of what consumers elect to place and carry on their body can be practical, logical, emotional and sometimes seemingly random. By providing insights and data to support the claims, developers of wearable health systems of the future will be able improve their chance of consumer adoption and continued use by gaining a clearer picture of the people that will be wearing the systems. Results from 5 different consumer research studies are presented, examining consumer buying patterns, gender differences, regional differences, their receptivity to health benefits delivered via clothing and what they want from technology enhanced clothing. Market research related to biophysical monitoring utilizing smart fabrics or interactive textiles show a critical level of commercial activity. Medical applications focused on the aged, infant and critical patient care are taking the lead. This paper presents a look at the biophysical monitoring market and discusses new materials useful in garment systems and the challenges remaining for their development and integration with textiles. A new method of non-invasive monitoring of periodic activity is discussed.

  17. Emergy analysis of a farm biogas project in China: A biophysical perspective of agricultural ecological engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, S. Y.; Zhang, B.; Cai, Z. F.

    2010-05-01

    This paper aims to present a biophysical understanding of the agricultural ecological engineering by emergy analysis for a farm biogas project in China as a representative case. Accounting for the resource inputs into and accumulation within the project, as well as the outputs to the social system, emergy analysis provides an empirical study in the biophysical dimension of the agricultural ecological engineering. Economic benefits and ecological economic benefits of the farm biogas project indicated by market value and emergy monetary value are discussed, respectively. Relative emergy-based indices such as renewability (R%), emergy yield ratio (EYR), environmental load ratio (ELR) and environmental sustainability index (ESI) are calculated to evaluate the environmental load and local sustainability of the concerned biogas project. The results show that the farm biogas project has more reliance on the local renewable resources input, less environmental pressure and higher sustainability compared with other typical agricultural systems. In addition, holistic evaluation and its policy implications for better operation and management of the biogas project are presented.

  18. [The history of medical physics and biophysics at the Humboldt University in Berlin].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneck, P

    2001-01-01

    The present Institute of Medical Physics and Biophysics (former Institute of Radiation Research) was established on September 1st in 1923 by Walter Friedrich (1883-1968). It was after the Institute in Frankfurt A.M. (founded by Friedrich Dessauer in 1921) - the second Institute of its kind in Germany. As a physicist who wrote his dissertation under Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen, he did research together with a Gynecologist in Friedburg on problems of radiation therapy and the prevention of radiation injuries. Thus Friedrich became one of the first German Biomedical Physicists and was appointed to a professorship at the university of Berlin and its faculty of medicine. The paper gives a survey of the history of the Institute of Radiation Research in the twenties, in the time of Nazi-rule, the period after the World War II and in the era of GDR until 1990 and up to the present time. The succession of directorship of the Institute and the main research subjects in medical physics and biophysics have been sketched.

  19. ‘The physics of life,’ an undergraduate general education biophysics course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parthasarathy, Raghuveer

    2015-05-01

    Improving the scientific literacy of non-scientists is an important aim, both because of the ever-increasing impact of science on our lives and because understanding science enriches our experience of the natural world. One route to improving scientific literacy is via general education undergraduate courses—i.e. courses for students not majoring in the sciences or engineering. Because it encompasses a variety of important scientific concepts, demonstrates connections between basic science and real-world applications and illustrates the creative ways in which scientific insights develop, biophysics is a useful subject with which to promote scientific literacy. I describe here a course on biophysics for non-science-major undergraduates recently developed at the University of Oregon (Eugene, OR, USA), noting its design, which spans both macroscopic and microscopic topics, and the specific content of a few of its modules. I also describe evidence-based pedagogical approaches adopted in teaching the course and aspects of course enrollment and evaluation.

  20. Incorporating Bio-Physical Sciences into a Decision Support Tool for Sustainable Urban Planning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zina Mitraka

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Deciding upon optimum planning actions in terms of sustainable urban planning involves the consideration of multiple environmental and socio-economic criteria. The transformation of natural landscapes to urban areas affects energy and material fluxes. An important aspect of the urban environment is the urban metabolism, and changes in such metabolism need to be considered for sustainable planning decisions. A spatial Decision Support System (DSS prototyped within the European FP7-funded project BRIDGE (sustainaBle uRban plannIng Decision support accountinG for urban mEtabolism, enables accounting for the urban metabolism of planning actions, by exploiting the current knowledge and technology of biophysical sciences. The main aim of the BRIDGE project was to bridge the knowledge and communication gap between urban planners and environmental scientists and to illustrate the advantages of considering detailed environmental information in urban planning processes. The developed DSS prototype integrates biophysical observations and simulation techniques with socio-economic aspects in five European cities, selected as case studies for the pilot application of the tool. This paper describes the design and implementation of the BRIDGE DSS prototype, illustrates some examples of use, and highlights the need for further research and development in the field.

  1. WebGIS System Provides Spatial Context for Interpreting Biophysical data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, R. L.; Santhana Vannan, K.; Olsen, L. M.; Palanisamy, G.; Cook, R. B.; Beaty, T. W.; Holladay, S. K.; Rhyne, T.; Voorhees, L. D.

    2006-05-01

    Understanding the spatial context of biophysical data such as measurements of Net Primary Productivity or carbon fluxes at tower sites is useful in their interpretation. The ORNL DAAC has developed a WebGIS system to help users visualize, locate and extract landcover, biophysical, elevation, and geopolitical data archived at the DAAC and/or point the users to the primary data location as in case of flux tower measurements. The system currently allows the user to extract data for thirteen different map features including four vector data sets and nine raster coverages. Four OGC layers are also available to help interpretation of the site specific data. The user can select either the Global or North American version of the system. Users can interrogate map features, extract and download map features including map layers (shape files). The user can download data for their region of interest as a shapefile in case of vector data and as a GeoTiff in case of raster data. A single file is created for each map feature. Twenty eight tools are provided to let the user identify, select, query, interpret and download the data.

  2. Measurement of the biophysical properties of porcine adipose-derived stem cells by a microperfusion system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jianye; Zhao, Gang; Zhang, Pengfei; Wang, Zhen; Zhang, Yunhai; Gao, Dayong; Zhou, Ping; Cao, Yunxia

    2014-12-01

    Adipose-derived stem cells (ADSCs), which are an accessible source of adult stem cells with capacities for self-renewal and differentiation into various cell types, have a promising potential in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine strategies. To meet the clinical demand for ADSCs, cryopreservation has been applied for long-term ADSC preservation. To optimize the addition, removal, freezing, and thawing of cryoprotective agents (CPAs) applied to ADSCs, we measured the transport properties of porcine ADSCs (pADSCs). The cell responses of pADSCs to hypertonic phosphate-buffered saline and common CPAs, dimethyl sulfoxide, ethylene glycol, and glycerol were measured by a microperfusion system at temperatures of 28, 18, 8, and -2°C. We determined the osmotically inactive cell volume (Vb), hydraulic conductivity (Lp), and CPA permeability (Ps) at various temperatures in a two-parameter model. Then, we quantitatively analyzed the effect of temperature on the transport properties of the pADSC membrane. Biophysical parameters were used to optimize CPA addition, removal, and freezing processes to minimize excessive shrinkage of pADSCs during cryopreservation. The biophysical properties of pADSCs have a great potential for effective optimization of cryopreservation procedures. PMID:25445459

  3. Biophysical and biochemical constraints imposed by salt stress:Learning from halophyte

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernardo eDuarte

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Soil salinization is one of the most important factors impacting plant productivity. About 3.6 billion of the world’s 5.2 billion ha of agricultural dryland have already suffered erosion, degradation and salinization. Halophytes typically are considered as plants able to complete their life cycle in environments where the salt concentration is 200 mM NaCl or higher. Different strategies are known to overcome salt stress, as adaptation mechanisms from this type of plants. Salinity adjustment is a complex phenomenon characterized by both biochemical and biophysical adaptations. As photosynthesis is a prerequisite for biomass production, halophytes adapted their electronic transduction pathways and the entire energetic metabolism to overcome the salt excess. The maintenance of ionic homeostasis is in the basis of all cellular stress in particular in terms of redox potential and energy transduction. In the present work the biophysical mechanisms underlying energy capture and transduction in halophytes are discussed alongside with their relation to biochemical mechanisms, integrating data from photosystem light harvesting complexes, electronic transport chains to the quinone pools, carbon harvesting and energy dissipation metabolism.

  4. CCR5-CCL Axis in PDL during Orthodontic Biophysical Force Application.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, S Y; Yoo, H I; Kim, S H

    2015-12-01

    Tooth movement by application of orthodontic biophysical force primarily reflects the role of soluble molecules released from the periodontal ligament (PDL). Thus far, many factors have been reported to be involved in orthodontic tooth movement (OTM), but key molecules that orchestrate responses of periodontal tissues to biophysical force are still enigmatic. In this in vivo study, in which the upper first molars in rats were moved, differential display-polymerase chain reaction revealed that CC chemokine receptor 5 (CCR5) level was differentially increased during OTM. Strong immunoreactivity for CCR5 was found in the PDL undergoing force application. Moreover, the in vitro compression or tension force application to primary cultured human PDL cells increased the expression of CCR5 and CCR5 ligands. In vitro tension force on human PDL cells did not induce RANKL, an osteoclastogenesis-inducing factor, but did induce the upregulation of IL12, an osteoclast inhibitory factor, and osteoblast differentiation factors, including Runx2, which was attenuated under tension by CCR5 gene silencing whereas augmented with CCR5 ligands. In contrast, in vitro compression force did not induce the expression of osteoprotegerin, a decoy receptor for RANKL and Runx2, but did induce the upregulation of RANKL, which was attenuated under compression by CCR5 gene silencing. These results suggest that the CCR5-CCR5 ligands axis in PDL cells may play a crucial role in the remodeling of periodontal tissues and can be a therapeutic target for achieving efficient OTM.

  5. Large-scale overexpression and purification of ADARs from Saccharomyces cerevisiae for biophysical and biochemical studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macbeth, Mark R; Bass, Brenda L

    2007-01-01

    Many biochemical and biophysical analyses of enzymes require quantities of protein that are difficult to obtain from expression in an endogenous system. To further complicate matters, native adenosine deaminases that act on RNA (ADARs) are expressed at very low levels, and overexpression of active protein has been unsuccessful in common bacterial systems. Here we describe the plasmid construction, expression, and purification procedures for ADARs overexpressed in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. ADAR expression is controlled by the Gal promoter, which allows for rapid induction of transcription when the yeast are grown in media containing galactose. The ADAR is translated with an N-terminal histidine tag that is cleaved by the tobacco etch virus protease, generating one nonnative glycine residue at the N-terminus of the ADAR protein. ADARs expressed using this system can be purified to homogeneity, are highly active in deaminating RNA, and are produced in quantities (from 3 to 10mg of pure protein per liter of yeast culture) that are sufficient for most biophysical studies.

  6. Mapping Biophysical Parameters for Land Surface Modeling over the Continental US Using MODIS and Landsat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lahouari Bounoua

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available In terms of the space cities occupy, urbanization appears as a minor land transformation. However, it permanently modifies land’s ecological functions, altering its carbon, energy, and water fluxes. It is therefore necessary to develop a land cover characterization at fine spatial and temporal scales to capture urbanization’s effects on surface fluxes. We develop a series of biophysical vegetation parameters such as the fraction of photosynthetically active radiation, leaf area index, vegetation greenness fraction, and roughness length over the continental US using MODIS and Landsat products for 2001. A 13-class land cover map was developed at a climate modeling grid (CMG merging the 500 m MODIS land cover and the 30 m impervious surface area from the National Land Cover Database. The landscape subgrid heterogeneity was preserved using fractions of each class from the 500 m and 30 m into the CMG. Biophysical parameters were computed using the 8-day composite Normalized Difference Vegetation Index produced by the North American Carbon Program. In addition to urban impact assessments, this dataset is useful for the computation of surface fluxes in land, vegetation, and urban models and is expected to be widely used in different land cover and land use change applications.

  7. Contributions of computational chemistry and biophysical techniques to fragment-based drug discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gozalbes, Rafael; Carbajo, Rodrigo J; Pineda-Lucena, Antonio

    2010-01-01

    In the last decade, fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) has evolved from a novel approach in the search of new hits to a valuable alternative to the high-throughput screening (HTS) campaigns of many pharmaceutical companies. The increasing relevance of FBDD in the drug discovery universe has been concomitant with an implementation of the biophysical techniques used for the detection of weak inhibitors, e.g. NMR, X-ray crystallography or surface plasmon resonance (SPR). At the same time, computational approaches have also been progressively incorporated into the FBDD process and nowadays several computational tools are available. These stretch from the filtering of huge chemical databases in order to build fragment-focused libraries comprising compounds with adequate physicochemical properties, to more evolved models based on different in silico methods such as docking, pharmacophore modelling, QSAR and virtual screening. In this paper we will review the parallel evolution and complementarities of biophysical techniques and computational methods, providing some representative examples of drug discovery success stories by using FBDD.

  8. Geostatistical regularization of inverse models for the retrieval of vegetation biophysical variables

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atzberger, C.; Richter, K.

    2009-09-01

    The robust and accurate retrieval of vegetation biophysical variables using radiative transfer models (RTM) is seriously hampered by the ill-posedness of the inverse problem. With this research we further develop our previously published (object-based) inversion approach [Atzberger (2004)]. The object-based RTM inversion takes advantage of the geostatistical fact that the biophysical characteristics of nearby pixel are generally more similar than those at a larger distance. A two-step inversion based on PROSPECT+SAIL generated look-up-tables is presented that can be easily implemented and adapted to other radiative transfer models. The approach takes into account the spectral signatures of neighboring pixel and optimizes a common value of the average leaf angle (ALA) for all pixel of a given image object, such as an agricultural field. Using a large set of leaf area index (LAI) measurements (n = 58) acquired over six different crops of the Barrax test site, Spain), we demonstrate that the proposed geostatistical regularization yields in most cases more accurate and spatially consistent results compared to the traditional (pixel-based) inversion. Pros and cons of the approach are discussed and possible future extensions presented.

  9. Theme: Laboratory Facilities Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Glen M.; And Others

    1993-01-01

    Includes "Laboratory Facilities Improvement" (Miller); "Remodeling Laboratories for Agriscience Instruction" (Newman, Johnson); "Planning for Change" (Mulcahy); "Laboratory Facilities Improvement for Technology Transfer" (Harper); "Facilities for Agriscience Instruction" (Agnew et al.); "Laboratory Facility Improvement" (Boren, Dwyer); and…

  10. Extraction of Mangrove Biophysical Parameters Using Airborne LiDAR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Poonsak Miphokasap

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Tree parameter determinations using airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR have been conducted in many forest types, including coniferous, boreal, and deciduous. However, there are only a few scientific articles discussing the application of LiDAR to mangrove biophysical parameter extraction at an individual tree level. The main objective of this study was to investigate the potential of using LiDAR data to estimate the biophysical parameters of mangrove trees at an individual tree scale. The Variable Window Filtering (VWF and Inverse Watershed Segmentation (IWS methods were investigated by comparing their performance in individual tree detection and in deriving tree position, crown diameter, and tree height using the LiDAR-derived Canopy Height Model (CHM. The results demonstrated that each method performed well in mangrove forests with a low percentage of crown overlap conditions. The VWF method yielded a slightly higher accuracy for mangrove parameter extractions from LiDAR data compared with the IWS method. This is because the VWF method uses an adaptive circular filtering window size based on an allometric relationship. As a result of the VWF method, the position measurements of individual tree indicated a mean distance error value of 1.10 m. The individual tree detection showed a kappa coefficient of agreement (K value of 0.78. The estimation of crown diameter produced a coefficient of determination (R2 value of 0.75, a Root Mean Square Error of the Estimate (RMSE value of 1.65 m, and a Relative Error (RE value of 19.7%. Tree height determination from LiDAR yielded an R2 value of 0.80, an RMSE value of 1.42 m, and an RE value of 19.2%. However, there are some limitations in the mangrove parameters derived from LiDAR. The results indicated that an increase in the percentage of crown overlap (COL results in an accuracy decrease of the mangrove parameters extracted from the LiDAR-derived CHM, particularly for crown measurements. In this

  11. Evaluation of the biophysical limitations on photosynthesis of four varietals of Brassica rapa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pleban, J. R.; Mackay, D. S.; Aston, T.; Ewers, B.; Weinig, C.

    2014-12-01

    Evaluating performance of agricultural varietals can support the identification of genotypes that will increase yield and can inform management practices. The biophysical limitations of photosynthesis are amongst the key factors that necessitate evaluation. This study evaluated how four biophysical limitations on photosynthesis, stomatal response to vapor pressure deficit, maximum carboxylation rate by Rubisco (Ac), rate of photosynthetic electron transport (Aj) and triose phosphate use (At) vary between four Brassica rapa genotypes. Leaf gas exchange data was used in an ecophysiological process model to conduct this evaluation. The Terrestrial Regional Ecosystem Exchange Simulator (TREES) integrates the carbon uptake and utilization rate limiting factors for plant growth. A Bayesian framework integrated in TREES here used net A as the target to estimate the four limiting factors for each genotype. As a first step the Bayesian framework was used for outlier detection, with data points outside the 95% confidence interval of model estimation eliminated. Next parameter estimation facilitated the evaluation of how the limiting factors on A different between genotypes. Parameters evaluated included maximum carboxylation rate (Vcmax), quantum yield (ϕJ), the ratio between Vc-max and electron transport rate (J), and trios phosphate utilization (TPU). Finally, as trios phosphate utilization has been shown to not play major role in the limiting A in many plants, the inclusion of At in models was evaluated using deviance information criteria (DIC). The outlier detection resulted in a narrowing in the estimated parameter distributions allowing for greater differentiation of genotypes. Results show genotypes vary in the how limitations shape assimilation. The range in Vc-max , a key parameter in Ac, was 203.2 - 223.9 umol m-2 s-1 while the range in ϕJ, a key parameter in AJ, was 0.463 - 0.497 umol m-2 s-1. The added complexity of the TPU limitation did not improve model

  12. Abstracts of the 9. Brazilian Congress of Biophysics, 2. Brazilian Congress of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics and 19. Brazilian Congress of Physiology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abstracts about biophysics, pharmacology, experimental therapeutics and physiology are presented. The use of radioisotopes in radioassays involve topics like biophysics and renal physiology; central nervous system; endocrinology; animal and comparative physiology; general physiology, digestion and nutrition; general pharmacology. (M.A.C.)

  13. LMS Moodle in teaching biophysics and medical informatics at Faculty of Medicine, University of Ostrava

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hana Sochorová

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The paper deals with the assessment of the current state of use of LMS Moodle for teaching medical biophysics and informatics for students of the Faculty of Medicine, the University of Ostrava. The initial experience with the implementation of blended learning methods (combination of distance and full-time instruction in teaching students in the part-time form of study were used for education and for full-time students. A few survey questions given to first-year students, which are presented in the paper, confirm that this is a move in the positive direction. A well-structured e-learning course and experienced teachers support student´s attention, motivation and results in achieving educational goals.

  14. Validation of Global EO Biophysical Products at JECAM Test Site in Ukraine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skakun, Sergii; Kussul, Nataliia; Kravchenko, Oleksiy; Basarab, Ruslan; Ostapenko, Vadym; Yailymov, Bohdan; Shelestov, Andrii; Kolotii, Andrii; Mironov, Andrii

    Efficient global agriculture monitoring requires appropriate validation of Earth observation (EO) products for different regions and cropping system. This problem is addressed within the Joint Experiment of Crop Assessment and Monitoring (JECAM) initiative which aims to develop monitoring and reporting protocols and best practices for a variety of global agricultural systems. Ukraine is actively involved into JECAM, and a JECAM Ukraine test site was officially established in 2011. The following problems are being solved within JECAM Ukraine: (i) crop identification and crop area estimation [1]; (ii) crop yield forecasting [2]; (iii) EO products validation. The following case study regions were selected for these purposes: (i) the whole Kyiv oblast (28,000 sq. km) indented for crop mapping and acreage estimation; (ii) intensive observation sub-site in Pshenichne which is a research farm from the National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine and indented for crop biophysical parameters estimation; (iii) Lviv region for rape-seed identification and crop rotation control; (iv) Crimea region for crop damage assessment due to droughts, and illegial field detection. In 2013, Ukrainian JECAM test site was selected as one of the “Champion User” for the ESA Sentinel-2 for Agriculture project. The test site was observed with SPOT-4 and RapidEye satellites every 5 days. The collected images are then used to simulate Sentinel-2 images for agriculture purposes. JECAM Ukraine is responsible for collecting ground observation data for validation purposes, and is involved in providing user requirements for Sentinel-2 agriculture related products. In particular, three field campaigns to characterize the vegetation biophysical parameters at the Pshenichne test site were carried out: First campaign - 14th to 17th of May 2013; second campaign - 12th to 15th of June 2013; third campaign - 14th to 17th of July 2013. Digital Hemispheric Photographs (DHP) images were

  15. Exploring the biophysical option space for feeding the world without deforestation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erb, Karl-Heinz; Lauk, Christian; Kastner, Thomas; Mayer, Andreas; Theurl, Michaela C; Haberl, Helmut

    2016-04-19

    Safeguarding the world's remaining forests is a high-priority goal. We assess the biophysical option space for feeding the world in 2050 in a hypothetical zero-deforestation world. We systematically combine realistic assumptions on future yields, agricultural areas, livestock feed and human diets. For each scenario, we determine whether the supply of crop products meets the demand and whether the grazing intensity stays within plausible limits. We find that many options exist to meet the global food supply in 2050 without deforestation, even at low crop-yield levels. Within the option space, individual scenarios differ greatly in terms of biomass harvest, cropland demand and grazing intensity, depending primarily on the quantitative and qualitative aspects of human diets. Grazing constraints strongly limit the option space. Without the option to encroach into natural or semi-natural land, trade volumes will rise in scenarios with globally converging diets, thereby decreasing the food self-sufficiency of many developing regions.

  16. Structure-function relationships in pulmonary surfactant membranes: from biophysics to therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez-Rodriguez, Elena; Pérez-Gil, Jesús

    2014-06-01

    Pulmonary surfactant is an essential lipid-protein complex to maintain an operative respiratory surface at the mammalian lungs. It reduces surface tension at the alveolar air-liquid interface to stabilise the lungs against physical forces operating along the compression-expansion breathing cycles. At the same time, surfactant integrates elements establishing a primary barrier against the entry of pathogens. Lack or deficiencies of the surfactant system are associated with respiratory pathologies, which treatment often includes supplementation with exogenous materials. The present review summarises current models on the molecular mechanisms of surfactant function, with particular emphasis in its biophysical properties to stabilise the lungs and the molecular alterations connecting impaired surfactant with diseased organs. It also provides a perspective on the current surfactant-based strategies to treat respiratory pathologies. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Membrane Structure and Function: Relevance in the Cell's Physiology, Pathology and Therapy. PMID:24525076

  17. Effect of Chlorotriphenyl Derivatives of Sn and Pb upon Biophysical Properties of Membranes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dariusz Man

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Biophysical activity of two twin organometallic compounds Triphenyltin chloride (TPhT and Triphenyllead chloride (TPhL in their interreaction with model membranes, as well as with yeast cells Saccharomyces cerevisiae, was investigated. Four measurement methods were used in the experiments: two physical methods (spin probes method and the electric method; two biological methods (minimal inhibitory concentration /MIC/ and yeast survival test. It has been found that the activity of TPhT in interaction with model membranes and yeast cells is distinctly greater than that of TPhL. The activity manifests itself by considerable increase in the fluidity of the middle part of liposome bilayer, change in the polarization direction of the transmembrane voltage of filters impregnated with lauric acid, and in complete inhibition of growth of yeast cells at the concentration of 5 μg/mL.

  18. Exploring the biophysical option space for feeding the world without deforestation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erb, Karl-Heinz; Lauk, Christian; Kastner, Thomas; Mayer, Andreas; Theurl, Michaela C; Haberl, Helmut

    2016-01-01

    Safeguarding the world's remaining forests is a high-priority goal. We assess the biophysical option space for feeding the world in 2050 in a hypothetical zero-deforestation world. We systematically combine realistic assumptions on future yields, agricultural areas, livestock feed and human diets. For each scenario, we determine whether the supply of crop products meets the demand and whether the grazing intensity stays within plausible limits. We find that many options exist to meet the global food supply in 2050 without deforestation, even at low crop-yield levels. Within the option space, individual scenarios differ greatly in terms of biomass harvest, cropland demand and grazing intensity, depending primarily on the quantitative and qualitative aspects of human diets. Grazing constraints strongly limit the option space. Without the option to encroach into natural or semi-natural land, trade volumes will rise in scenarios with globally converging diets, thereby decreasing the food self-sufficiency of many developing regions. PMID:27092437

  19. Biophysical and biological factors determining the ability to achieve long-term cryobiological preservation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mazur, P. [Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States). Life Sciences Div.

    1997-12-01

    The BESTCapsule will maintain appropriate biological specimens for decades or centuries at cryogenic temperatures in the living state. Maintenance at temperatures below {approximately} {minus}140 C is not a problem. No ordinary chemical reactions in aqueous solutions can occur. The only source of damage will be the slow accumulation of physical damage to DNA from background ionizing radiation. But this source of damage should not become serious in less than a millennium. Rather, the main problem in cryopreservation is to devise procedures for cooling the biological specimens to {minus}196 C and returning them to normal temperatures without inflicting lethal injury. Regardless of the cell type, there are certain encompassing biophysical factors and constraints that determine whether they will survive or die during freezing and thawing. Superimposed on these may be special biological factors that apply to specific cell types. This paper will emphasize the former and give illustrative examples of the latter.

  20. Construction of force measuring optical tweezers instrumentation and investigations of biophysical properties of bacterial adhesion organelles

    CERN Document Server

    Andersson, Magnus

    2015-01-01

    Optical tweezers are a technique in which microscopic-sized particles, including living cells and bacteria, can be non-intrusively trapped with high accuracy solely using focused light. The technique has therefore become a powerful tool in the field of biophysics. Optical tweezers thereby provide outstanding manipulation possibilities of cells as well as semi-transparent materials, both non-invasively and non-destructively, in biological systems. In addition, optical tweezers can measure minute forces (< 10-12 N), probe molecular interactions and their energy landscapes, and apply both static and dynamic forces in biological systems in a controlled manner. The assessment of intermolecular forces with force measuring optical tweezers, and thereby the biomechanical structure of biological objects, has therefore considerably facilitated our understanding of interactions and structures of biological systems. Adhesive bacterial organelles, so called pili, mediate adhesion to host cells and are therefore crucial...

  1. Generation and extraction of second pitch-shift from cochlear biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Gomez, Florian

    2013-01-01

    It has been long known that the perceived pitch of a complex harmonic sound changes if the partials of the sound are shifted in frequency by a fixed amount. Rules that this pitch-shift can be expected to follow can be derived from simple nonlinear modeling (first pitch-shift), but clear deviations were observed in corresponding psychoacoustic experiments (second pitch-shift effects). This raises the question of whether these deviations are due to the biophysics of the nonlinear hearing sensor, the cochlea, or are an artifact generated higher up in the auditory pathway. In this article, we explicitly confirm that the second pitch-shift originates in the cochlea, and that the key factors responsible for the phenomenon are combination-tone generation, low-pass filtering and feed-forward coupling in the cochlea. We find, in particular, that the scaling laws of Hopf cochlea combination tones fully explain the psychoacoustical pitch data of G.F. Smoorenburg (1970).

  2. THE INFLUENCE OF THE NUTRITIONAL FACTORS ON SOME BIOPHYSICAL PARAMETERS OF THE RUMINAL FLUID

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    IULIANA CREłESCU

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available At this hour, a large part of the products obtained through biotechnologies are used in animal fodder, thus contributing to the enhancement of the animal products obtained in economical conditions through optimising the nutrition. In the present study, we wanted to pursue the influence of a high level of cereal in fodder rations, as well as the effect of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Yea Sacc1026 strain on some biophysical parameters of the ruminal fluid, such as: pH, density and superficial tension. It has been noted, that Yea Sacc1026 improves the pH and the superficial tension, which represents more stable ruminal fermentation when using fodder rations with a high level of barley.

  3. Quantification of Dance Movement by Simultaneous Measurement of Body Motion and Biophysical Information

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Woong Choi; Tadao Isaka; Mamiko Sakata; Seiya Tsuruta; Kozaburo Hachimura

    2007-01-01

    The purpose of this research is a quantitative analysis of movement patterns of dance, which cannot be analyzed with a motion capture system alone, using simultaneous measurement of body motion and biophysical information. In this research, two kinds of same leg movement are captured by simultaneous measurement; one is a leg movement with given strength, the other is a leg movement without strength on condition of basic experiment using optical motion capture and electromyography (EMG) equipment in order to quantitatively analyze characteristics of leg movement. Also, we measured the motion of the traditional Japanese dance using the constructed system. We can visualize leg movement of Japanese dance by displaying a 3D CG character animation with motion data and EMG data. In addition, we expect that our research will help dancers and researchers on dance through giving new information on dance movement which cannot be analyzed with only motion capture.

  4. LiDAR improves fire behaviour predictions using a biophysical, mechanistic model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zylstra, Philip; Horsey, Bronwyn; Yebra, Marta; Marselis, Suzanne

    2016-04-01

    Numerous studies have attempted to address the utility of LiDAR as a tool for measuring fuel inputs to fire behaviour models, however the direct effect of this approach on fire behaviour prediction requires quantification. We used a biophysical, mechanistic model validated for eucalypt forest in SE Australia to assess the improvement in prediction accuracy afforded using LiDAR-derived inputs. The accuracy of modelling with these inputs was compared to modelling using detailed site-specific field surveys of a dry sclerophyll forest to represent the highest standard of inputs, and values derived from desktop-available community-wide descriptors to represent baseline inputs. Use of LiDAR significantly improved on baseline predictions and enabled site-specific decision making across the study area. When used with an appropriate model, LiDAR can facilitate improved decision-making in regard to forest fire behaviour.

  5. Simple biophysics underpins collective conformations of the intrinsically disordered proteins of the Nuclear Pore Complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vovk, Andrei; Gu, Chad; Opferman, Michael G; Kapinos, Larisa E; Lim, Roderick Yh; Coalson, Rob D; Jasnow, David; Zilman, Anton

    2016-01-01

    Nuclear Pore Complexes (NPCs) are key cellular transporter that control nucleocytoplasmic transport in eukaryotic cells, but its transport mechanism is still not understood. The centerpiece of NPC transport is the assembly of intrinsically disordered polypeptides, known as FG nucleoporins, lining its passageway. Their conformations and collective dynamics during transport are difficult to assess in vivo. In vitro investigations provide partially conflicting results, lending support to different models of transport, which invoke various conformational transitions of the FG nucleoporins induced by the cargo-carrying transport proteins. We show that the spatial organization of FG nucleoporin assemblies with the transport proteins can be understood within a first principles biophysical model with a minimal number of key physical variables, such as the average protein interaction strengths and spatial densities. These results address some of the outstanding controversies and suggest how molecularly divergent NPCs in different species can perform essentially the same function. PMID:27198189

  6. Retrieval of canopy biophysical variables from remote sensing data using contextual information

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2008-01-01

    In order to improve the accuracy of biophysical parameters retrieved from remotely sensing data,a new algorithm was presented by using spatial contextual to estimate canopy variables from high-resolution remote sensing images.The developed algorithm was used for inversion of leaf area index (LAI) from Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) data by combining with optimization method to minimize cost functions.The results show that the distribution of LAI is spatially consistent with the false composition imagery from ETM+ and the accuracy of LAI is significantly improved over the results retrieved by the conventional pixelwise retrieval methods,demonstrating that this method can be reliably used to integrate spatial contextual information for inverting LAI from high-resolution remote sensing images.

  7. The Physics of Proteins An Introduction to Biological Physics and Molecular Biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Frauenfelder, Hans; Chan, Winnie S

    2010-01-01

    Physics and the life sciences have established new connections within the past few decades, resulting in biological physics as an established subfield with strong groups working in many physics departments. These interactions between physics and biology form a two-way street with physics providing new tools and concepts for understanding life, while biological systems can yield new insights into the physics of complex systems. To address the challenges of this interdisciplinary area, The Physics of Proteins: An Introduction to Biological Physics and Molecular Biophysics is divided into three interconnected sections. In Parts I and II, early chapters introduce the terminology and describe the main biological systems that physicists will encounter. Similarities between biomolecules, glasses, and solids are stressed with an emphasis on the fundamental concepts of living systems. The central section (Parts III and IV) delves into the dynamics of complex systems. A main theme is the realization that biological sys...

  8. Summaries of research projects for fiscal years 1996 and 1997, medical applications and biophysical research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1998-02-01

    The Medical Applications and Biophysical Research Division of the Office of Biological and Environmental Research supports and manages research in several distinct areas of science and technology. The projects described in this book are grouped by the main budgetary areas: General Life Sciences (structural molecular biology), Medical Applications (primarily nuclear medicine) and Measurement Science (analytical chemistry instrumentation), Environmental Management Science Program, and the Small Business Innovation Research Program. The research funded by this division complements that of the other two divisions in the Office of Biological and Environmental Research (OBER): Health Effects and Life Sciences Research, and Environmental Sciences. Most of the OBER programs are planned and administered jointly by the staff of two or all three of the divisions. This summary book provides information on research supported in these program areas during Fiscal Years 1996 and 1997.

  9. Chemical and Biophysical Modulation of Cas9 for Tunable Genome Engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nuñez, James K; Harrington, Lucas B; Doudna, Jennifer A

    2016-03-18

    The application of the CRISPR-Cas9 system for genome engineering has revolutionized the ability to interrogate genomes of mammalian cells. Programming the Cas9 endonuclease to induce DNA breaks at specified sites is achieved by simply modifying the sequence of its cognate guide RNA. Although Cas9-mediated genome editing has been shown to be highly specific, cleavage events at off-target sites have also been reported. Minimizing, and eventually abolishing, unwanted off-target cleavage remains a major goal of the CRISPR-Cas9 technology before its implementation for therapeutic use. Recent efforts have turned to chemical biology and biophysical approaches to engineer inducible genome editing systems for controlling Cas9 activity at the transcriptional and protein levels. Here, we review recent advancements to modulate Cas9-mediated genome editing by engineering split-Cas9 constructs, inteins, small molecules, protein-based dimerizing domains, and light-inducible systems. PMID:26857072

  10. Computer Simulation and Data Analysis in Molecular Biology and Biophysics An Introduction Using R

    CERN Document Server

    Bloomfield, Victor

    2009-01-01

    This book provides an introduction, suitable for advanced undergraduates and beginning graduate students, to two important aspects of molecular biology and biophysics: computer simulation and data analysis. It introduces tools to enable readers to learn and use fundamental methods for constructing quantitative models of biological mechanisms, both deterministic and with some elements of randomness, including complex reaction equilibria and kinetics, population models, and regulation of metabolism and development; to understand how concepts of probability can help in explaining important features of DNA sequences; and to apply a useful set of statistical methods to analysis of experimental data from spectroscopic, genomic, and proteomic sources. These quantitative tools are implemented using the free, open source software program R. R provides an excellent environment for general numerical and statistical computing and graphics, with capabilities similar to Matlab®. Since R is increasingly used in bioinformat...

  11. Biophysics of DNA-Protein Interactions From Single Molecules to Biological Systems

    CERN Document Server

    Williams, Mark C

    2011-01-01

    This book presents a concise overview of current research on the biophysics of DNA-protein interactions. A wide range of new and classical methods are presented by authors investigating physical mechanisms by which proteins interact with DNA. For example, several chapters address the mechanisms by which proteins search for and recognize specific binding sites on DNA, a process critical for cellular function. Single molecule methods such as force spectroscopy as well as fluorescence imaging and tracking are described in these chapters as well as other parts of the book that address the dynamics of protein-DNA interactions. Other important topics include the mechanisms by which proteins engage DNA sequences and/or alter DNA structure. These simple but important model interactions are then placed in the broader biological context with discussion of larger protein-DNA complexes . Topics include replication forks, recombination complexes, DNA repair interactions, and ultimately, methods to understand the chromatin...

  12. Lessons from the biophysics of interfaces: Lung surfactant and tear fluid

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rantamaki, A.; Telenius, J.; Koivuniemi, A.;

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this review is to provide insight into the biophysical properties and functions of tear fluid and lung surfactant - two similar fluids covering the epithelium of two distinctive organs. Both fluids form a layer-like structure that essentially comprise of an aqueous layer next...... to the epithelium and an anterior lipid layer at the air-water interface. The aqueous layers contain soluble proteins and metabolites, and they are responsible for the host defence system and nutrition of the organ. However, many proteins also interact with the lipid layer and are important for the surface......-active function of the fluid film. The lipid layer of lung surfactant comprises mainly of phospholipids, especially phosphatidylcholines, and only small amounts of non-polar lipids, mainly cholesterol. In contrast, tear fluid lipid layer comprises of a mixture of polar and non-polar lipids. However, the relative...

  13. Magnetic nanoparticles for biophysical applications synthesized by high-power physical dispersion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safronov, A. P.; Beketov, I. V.; Tyukova, I. S.; Medvedev, A. I.; Samatov, O. M.; Murzakaev, A. M.

    2015-06-01

    The low cost and high output methods of high-power physical dispersion: the electrical explosion of wire and the laser target evaporation were elaborated for the production of iron oxide magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) with controlled dispersion parameters and highly reproducible functional properties. The synthesized MNPs were spherical in shape with mean diameter 10 nm and lognormal particle size distribution. The phase composition, shape, particle size and functional properties of MNPs were cross-examined by a variety of contemporary experimental techniques. The phase structure of MNPs corresponds to the inverse spinel of magnetite. Meanwhile, due to the non-equilibrium conditions of the dispersion chemical composition of MNPs is close to maghemite-γ-Fe2O3. Their magnetic properties are reproducible and very close to the single domain superparamagnetic behavior. The stability of the suspensions of these MNPs and their applicability in the biophysical purposes such as magneto-induced heating have been demonstrated.

  14. A biophysical signature of network affiliation and sensory processing in mitral cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Angelo, Kamilla; Rancz, Ede A; Pimentel, Diogo;

    2012-01-01

    One defining characteristic of the mammalian brain is its neuronal diversity. For a given region, substructure, layer or even cell type, variability in neuronal morphology and connectivity persists. Although it is well known that such cellular properties vary considerably according to neuronal type......, the substantial biophysical diversity of neurons of the same morphological class is typically averaged out and ignored. Here we show that the amplitude of hyperpolarization-evoked sag of membrane potential recorded in olfactory bulb mitral cells is an emergent, homotypic property of local networks and sensory...... receptor is universally expressed. Population diversity in this intrinsic property therefore reflects differential expression between local mitral cell networks processing distinct odour-related information....

  15. Diffusion-weighted MRI and quantitative biophysical modeling of hippocampal neurite loss in chronic stress.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Vestergaard-Poulsen

    Full Text Available Chronic stress has detrimental effects on physiology, learning and memory and is involved in the development of anxiety and depressive disorders. Besides changes in synaptic formation and neurogenesis, chronic stress also induces dendritic remodeling in the hippocampus, amygdala and the prefrontal cortex. Investigations of dendritic remodeling during development and treatment of stress are currently limited by the invasive nature of histological and stereological methods. Here we show that high field diffusion-weighted MRI combined with quantitative biophysical modeling of the hippocampal dendritic loss in 21 day restraint stressed rats highly correlates with former histological findings. Our study strongly indicates that diffusion-weighted MRI is sensitive to regional dendritic loss and thus a promising candidate for non-invasive studies of dendritic plasticity in chronic stress and stress-related disorders.

  16. Biophysical characterisation of calumenin as a charged F508del-CFTR folding modulator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripathi, Rashmi; Benz, Nathalie; Culleton, Bridget; Trouvé, Pascal; Férec, Claude

    2014-01-01

    The cystic fibrosis transmembrane regulator (CFTR) is a cyclic-AMP dependent chloride channel expressed at the apical surface of epithelial cells lining various organs such as the respiratory tract. Defective processing and functioning of this protein caused by mutations in the CFTR gene results in loss of ionic balance, defective mucus clearance, increased proliferation of biofilms and inflammation of human airways observed in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. The process by which CFTR folds and matures under the influence of various chaperones in the secretory pathway remains incompletely understood. Recently, calumenin, a secretory protein, belonging to the CREC family of low affinity calcium binding proteins has been identified as a putative CFTR chaperone whose biophysical properties and functions remain uncharacterized. We compared hydropathy, instability, charge, unfoldability, disorder and aggregation propensity of calumenin and other CREC family members with CFTR associated chaperones and calcium binding proteins, wild-type and mutant CFTR proteins and intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs). We observed that calumenin, along with other CREC proteins, was significantly more charged and less folded compared to CFTR associated chaperones. Moreover like IDPs, calumenin and other CREC proteins were found to be less hydrophobic and aggregation prone. Phylogenetic analysis revealed a close link between calumenin and other CREC proteins indicating how evolution might have shaped their similar biophysical properties. Experimentally, calumenin was observed to significantly reduce F508del-CFTR aggregation in a manner similar to AavLEA1, a well-characterized IDP. Fluorescence microscopy based imaging analysis also revealed altered trafficking of calumenin in bronchial cells expressing F508del-CFTR, indicating its direct role in the pathophysiology of CF. In conclusion, calumenin is characterized as a charged protein exhibiting close similarity with IDPs and is

  17. Across space and time: social responses to large-scale biophysical systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacMynowski, Dena P

    2007-06-01

    The conceptual rubric of ecosystem management has been widely discussed and deliberated in conservation biology, environmental policy, and land/resource management. In this paper, I argue that two critical aspects of the ecosystem management concept require greater attention in policy and practice. First, although emphasis has been placed on the "space" of systems, the "time" -- or rates of change -- associated with biophysical and social systems has received much less consideration. Second, discussions of ecosystem management have often neglected the temporal disconnects between changes in biophysical systems and the response of social systems to management issues and challenges. The empirical basis of these points is a case study of the "Crown of the Continent Ecosystem," an international transboundary area of the Rocky Mountains that surrounds Glacier National Park (USA) and Waterton Lakes National Park (Canada). This project assessed the experiences and perspectives of 1) middle- and upper-level government managers responsible for interjurisdictional cooperation, and 2) environmental nongovernment organizations with an international focus. I identify and describe 10 key challenges to increasing the extent and intensity of transboundary cooperation in land/resource management policy and practice. These issues are discussed in terms of their political, institutional, cultural, information-based, and perceptual elements. Analytic techniques include a combination of environmental history, semistructured interviews with 48 actors, and text analysis in a systematic qualitative framework. The central conclusion of this work is that the rates of response of human social systems must be better integrated with the rates of ecological change. This challenge is equal to or greater than the well-recognized need to adapt the spatial scale of human institutions to large-scale ecosystem processes and transboundary wildlife. PMID:17415612

  18. Bio-physical vs. Economic Uncertainty in the Analysis of Climate Change Impacts on World Agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertel, T. W.; Lobell, D. B.

    2010-12-01

    Accumulating evidence suggests that agricultural production could be greatly affected by climate change, but there remains little quantitative understanding of how these agricultural impacts would affect economic livelihoods in poor countries. The recent paper by Hertel, Burke and Lobell (GEC, 2010) considers three scenarios of agricultural impacts of climate change, corresponding to the fifth, fiftieth, and ninety fifth percentiles of projected yield distributions for the world’s crops in 2030. They evaluate the resulting changes in global commodity prices, national economic welfare, and the incidence of poverty in a set of 15 developing countries. Although the small price changes under the medium scenario are consistent with previous findings, their low productivity scenario reveals the potential for much larger food price changes than reported in recent studies which have hitherto focused on the most likely outcomes. The poverty impacts of price changes under the extremely adverse scenario are quite heterogeneous and very significant in some population strata. They conclude that it is critical to look beyond central case climate shocks and beyond a simple focus on yields and highly aggregated poverty impacts. In this paper, we conduct a more formal, systematic sensitivity analysis (SSA) with respect to uncertainty in the biophysical impacts of climate change on agriculture, by explicitly specifying joint distributions for global yield changes - this time focusing on 2050. This permits us to place confidence intervals on the resulting price impacts and poverty results which reflect the uncertainty inherited from the biophysical side of the analysis. We contrast this with the economic uncertainty inherited from the global general equilibrium model (GTAP), by undertaking SSA with respect to the behavioral parameters in that model. This permits us to assess which type of uncertainty is more important for regional price and poverty outcomes. Finally, we undertake a

  19. Resolving the biophysics of axon transmembrane polarization in a single closed-form description

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    When a depolarizing event occurs across a cell membrane there is a remarkable change in its electrical properties. A complete depolarization event produces a considerably rapid increase in voltage that propagates longitudinally along the axon and is accompanied by changes in axial conductance. A dynamically changing magnetic field is associated with the passage of the action potential down the axon. Over 75 years of research has gone into the quantification of this phenomenon. To date, no unified model exist that resolves transmembrane polarization in a closed-form description. Here, a simple but formative description of propagated signaling phenomena in the membrane of an axon is presented in closed-form. The focus is on using both biophysics and mathematical methods for elucidating the fundamental mechanisms governing transmembrane polarization. The results presented demonstrate how to resolve electromagnetic and thermodynamic factors that govern transmembrane potential. Computational results are supported by well-established quantitative descriptions of propagated signaling phenomena in the membrane of an axon. The findings demonstrate how intracellular conductance, the thermodynamics of magnetization, and current modulation function together in generating an action potential in a unified closed-form description. The work presented in this paper provides compelling evidence that three basic factors contribute to the propagated signaling in the membrane of an axon. It is anticipated this work will compel those in biophysics, physical biology, and in the computational neurosciences to probe deeper into the classical and quantum features of membrane magnetization and signaling. It is hoped that subsequent investigations of this sort will be advanced by the computational features of this model without having to resort to numerical methods of analysis

  20. Integrating socio-economic and biophysical data to enhance watershed management and planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pirani, Farshad Jalili; Mousavi, Seyed Alireza

    2016-09-01

    Sustainability has always been considered as one of the main aspects of watershed management plans. In many developing countries, watershed management practices and planning are usually performed by integrating biophysical layers, and other existing layers which cannot be identified as geographic layers are ignored. We introduce an approach to consider some socioeconomic parameters which are important for watershed management decisions. Ganj basin in Chaharmahal-Bakhtiari Province was selected as the case study area, which includes three traditional sanctums: Ganj, Shiremard and Gerdabe Olya. Socioeconomic data including net agricultural income, net ranching income, population and household number, literacy rate, unemployment rate, population growth rate and active population were mapped within traditional sanctums and then were integrated into other biophysical layers. After overlaying and processing these data to determine management units, different quantitative and qualitative approaches were adopted to achieve a practical framework for watershed management planning and relevant plans for homogeneous units were afterwards proposed. Comparing the results with current plans, the area of allocated lands to different proposed operations considering both qualitative and quantitative approaches were the same in many cases and there was a meaningful difference with current plans; e.g., 3820 ha of lands are currently managed under an enclosure plan, while qualitative and quantitative approaches in this study suggest 1388 and 1428 ha to be allocated to this operation type, respectively. Findings show that despite the ambiguities and complexities, different techniques could be adopted to incorporate socioeconomic conditions in watershed management plans. This introductory approach will help to enhance watershed management decisions with more attention to societal background and economic conditions, which will presumably motivate local communities to participate in

  1. Biophysical Impacts of Tropical Land Transformation from Forest to Oil Palm and Rubber Plantations in Indonesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knohl, Alexander; Meijide, Ana; Fan, Yuanchao; Gunawan, Dodo; Hölscher, Dirk; June, Tania; Niu, Furong; Panferov, Oleg; Ringeler, Andre; Röll, Alexander; Sabajo, Clifton; Tiralla, Nina

    2016-04-01

    Indonesia currently experiences rapid and large-scale land-use changes resulting in forest loss and the expansion of cash crop plantations such as oil palm and rubber. Such land transformations are associated with changes in surface properties that affect biophysical processes influencing the atmosphere. Yet, the overall effect of such land transformations on the atmosphere at local and regional scale remains unclear. In our study, we combine measurements of microclimate, transpiration via sap-flux, surface energy fluxes via eddy covariance, surface temperature via remote sensing, land surface (CLM) and regional climate modeling (WRF) for Jambi Province in Indonesia. Our microclimatic measurements showed that air temperature within the canopy was on average 0.7-0.8°C higher in monoculture plantations (oil palm and rubber) compared to forest. Remote sensing analysis using MODIS and Landsat revealed a higher canopy surface temperature for oil palm plantations (+1.5°C) compared to forest, but only little differences for rubber plantations. Transpiration (T) and evapotranspiration (ET) as well as the contribution of T to ET of oil palm showed a strong age-dependent increase. The sensible to latent heat flux ratio decreased with age. Overall, rubber plantations showed the lowest transpirations rates (320 mm year-1), oil palm intermediate rates (414 mm year-1), and forest the highest rates (558 mm year-1) indicating substantial differences in water use. Despite the differences in water use and the higher within-canopy and surface temperatures of the plantations compared to the forest, there was only a minor effect of land transformation on the atmosphere at the regional scale (<0.2 °C), irrespectively of the large spatial extend of the transformation. In conclusion, our study shows a strong local scale biophysical impact affecting the conditions at the stand level, which is however mitigated in the atmosphere at the regional level.

  2. Synchrony suppression in complex stimulus responses of a biophysical model of the cochlea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shamma, S A; Morrish, K A

    1987-05-01

    A minimal biophysical model of the cochlea is used to investigate the validity of the hypothesis that a single compressive nonlinearity at the hair cell level can explain some of the suppression phenomena in cochlear responses to complex stimuli. The dependencies of the model responses on the amplitudes and frequencies of two-tone stimuli resemble in many respects the behavior of the experimental data, and can be traced to explicit biophysical parameters in the model. Most discrepancies between theory and experiment stem from simplifications in parameters of the minimal model that play no direct role in the hypothesis. The analysis and simulations predict further results which, pending experimental verification, may provide a more direct test of the influence of the compressive nonlinearity on the relative amplitudes of the synchronous response components, and hence of its role in synchrony suppression. For instance, regardless of the overall absolute levels of a two-tone stimulus applied to this type of model, the ratio of the amplitudes at the input and the ratio of the corresponding responses at the output remain approximately constant and equal (the output ratio changes by at most 6 dB in favor of the stronger tone). Other nonlinear responses to multitonal stimuli can also be reproduced, such as "spectral edge enhancement" [Horst et al., Peripheral Auditory Mechanisms (Springer, Berlin, 1985)] and some aspects of three-tone suppression [Javel et al., Mechanisms of Hearing (Monash U.P., Australia, 1983)]. In contrast to the complex behavior of suppression with increasing sound intensity and the drastic influence of the compressive nonlinearity on the absolute response measures on the auditory nerve (e.g., average rate and synchrony profiles), the percepts of complex sounds are relatively stable. This suggests that the invariant relative response measures are more likely used in the encoding and CNS extraction of the spectrum of complex stimuli such as speech.

  3. Quantifying the thermal heat requirement of Brassica in assessing biophysical parameters under semi-arid microenvironments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adak, Tarun; Chakravarty, N. V. K.

    2010-07-01

    Evaluation of the thermal heat requirement of Brassica spp. across agro-ecological regions is required in order to understand the further effects of climate change. Spatio-temporal changes in hydrothermal regimes are likely to affect the physiological growth pattern of the crop, which in turn will affect economic yields and crop quality. Such information is helpful in developing crop simulation models to describe the differential thermal regimes that prevail at different phenophases of the crop. Thus, the current lack of quantitative information on the thermal heat requirement of Brassica crops under debranched microenvironments prompted the present study, which set out to examine the response of biophysical parameters [leaf area index (LAI), dry biomass production, seed yield and oil content] to modified microenvironments. Following 2 years of field experiments on Typic Ustocrepts soils under semi-arid climatic conditions, it was concluded that the Brassica crop is significantly responsive to microenvironment modification. A highly significant and curvilinear relationship was observed between LAI and dry biomass production with accumulated heat units, with thermal accumulation explaining ≥80% of the variation in LAI and dry biomass production. It was further observed that the economic seed yield and oil content, which are a function of the prevailing weather conditions, were significantly responsive to the heat units accumulated from sowing to 50% physiological maturity. Linear regression analysis showed that growing degree days (GDD) could indicate 60-70% variation in seed yield and oil content, probably because of the significant response to differential thermal microenvironments. The present study illustrates the statistically strong and significant response of biophysical parameters of Brassica spp. to microenvironment modification in semi-arid regions of northern India.

  4. The biophysical property of A549 cells transferred by VEGF-D.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhen; Wu, Xiu-Li; Wang, Xu; Tian, Hong-Xia; Chen, Zhi-Hong; Li, Yang-Qiu

    2014-01-01

    Vascular endothelial growth factor-D (VEGF-D) together with VEGF-C is considered to be associated with lymphangiogenesis and angiogenesis and involve in tumorization. This study aims to investigate the influence of exogenous VEGF-D gene on the biophysical property of cell surface of lung adenocarcinoma cell line. A panel of lung adenocarcinoma cell lines were examined the expression of VEGF-D and VEGF-C by real-time PCR. The VEGF-D recombinant plasmid containing enhanced green fluorescence protein (EGFP) was constructed and transfected to the cell line with no expression of VEGF-D and confirmed by real-time PCR and Western blot analysis. Topographic images of cells were obtained by using atomic force microscope (AFM) in contact mode. Unlike VEGF-C, VEGF-D was found to have a very low expression or undetectable expression in lung adenocarcinoma cell lines. The VEGF-D recombinant plasmid had been constructed successfully and was transferred into the human lung adenocarcinoma cell line A549 cells which had no endogenous expression of VEGF-D, and exogenous VEGF-D could be detected in mRNA and protein expression levels in the gene modified cells, while the VEGF-C gene expression had no change after VEGF-D transfection. After transfection, the irregular microspikes or nano clusters could observe on the surface of A549 cells, and VEGF-D transfected A549 cells became more rigid. The exogenous VEGF-D gene might cause the remarkable biophysical architectural changes in the A549 cells, which might as a novel biomarker for evaluation of its biological function. PMID:23526563

  5. Across Space and Time: Social Responses to Large-Scale Biophysical Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macmynowski, Dena P.

    2007-06-01

    The conceptual rubric of ecosystem management has been widely discussed and deliberated in conservation biology, environmental policy, and land/resource management. In this paper, I argue that two critical aspects of the ecosystem management concept require greater attention in policy and practice. First, although emphasis has been placed on the “space” of systems, the “time”—or rates of change—associated with biophysical and social systems has received much less consideration. Second, discussions of ecosystem management have often neglected the temporal disconnects between changes in biophysical systems and the response of social systems to management issues and challenges. The empirical basis of these points is a case study of the “Crown of the Continent Ecosystem,” an international transboundary area of the Rocky Mountains that surrounds Glacier National Park (USA) and Waterton Lakes National Park (Canada). This project assessed the experiences and perspectives of 1) middle- and upper-level government managers responsible for interjurisdictional cooperation, and 2) environmental nongovernment organizations with an international focus. I identify and describe 10 key challenges to increasing the extent and intensity of transboundary cooperation in land/resource management policy and practice. These issues are discussed in terms of their political, institutional, cultural, information-based, and perceptual elements. Analytic techniques include a combination of environmental history, semistructured interviews with 48 actors, and text analysis in a systematic qualitative framework. The central conclusion of this work is that the rates of response of human social systems must be better integrated with the rates of ecological change. This challenge is equal to or greater than the well-recognized need to adapt the spatial scale of human institutions to large-scale ecosystem processes and transboundary wildlife.

  6. Resolving the biophysics of axon transmembrane polarization in a single closed-form description

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melendy, Robert F.

    2015-12-01

    When a depolarizing event occurs across a cell membrane there is a remarkable change in its electrical properties. A complete depolarization event produces a considerably rapid increase in voltage that propagates longitudinally along the axon and is accompanied by changes in axial conductance. A dynamically changing magnetic field is associated with the passage of the action potential down the axon. Over 75 years of research has gone into the quantification of this phenomenon. To date, no unified model exist that resolves transmembrane polarization in a closed-form description. Here, a simple but formative description of propagated signaling phenomena in the membrane of an axon is presented in closed-form. The focus is on using both biophysics and mathematical methods for elucidating the fundamental mechanisms governing transmembrane polarization. The results presented demonstrate how to resolve electromagnetic and thermodynamic factors that govern transmembrane potential. Computational results are supported by well-established quantitative descriptions of propagated signaling phenomena in the membrane of an axon. The findings demonstrate how intracellular conductance, the thermodynamics of magnetization, and current modulation function together in generating an action potential in a unified closed-form description. The work presented in this paper provides compelling evidence that three basic factors contribute to the propagated signaling in the membrane of an axon. It is anticipated this work will compel those in biophysics, physical biology, and in the computational neurosciences to probe deeper into the classical and quantum features of membrane magnetization and signaling. It is hoped that subsequent investigations of this sort will be advanced by the computational features of this model without having to resort to numerical methods of analysis.

  7. Resolving the biophysics of axon transmembrane polarization in a single closed-form description

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Melendy, Robert F., E-mail: rfmelendy@liberty.edu [School of Engineering and Computational Sciences, Liberty University, Lynchburg, Virginia 24515 (United States)

    2015-12-28

    When a depolarizing event occurs across a cell membrane there is a remarkable change in its electrical properties. A complete depolarization event produces a considerably rapid increase in voltage that propagates longitudinally along the axon and is accompanied by changes in axial conductance. A dynamically changing magnetic field is associated with the passage of the action potential down the axon. Over 75 years of research has gone into the quantification of this phenomenon. To date, no unified model exist that resolves transmembrane polarization in a closed-form description. Here, a simple but formative description of propagated signaling phenomena in the membrane of an axon is presented in closed-form. The focus is on using both biophysics and mathematical methods for elucidating the fundamental mechanisms governing transmembrane polarization. The results presented demonstrate how to resolve electromagnetic and thermodynamic factors that govern transmembrane potential. Computational results are supported by well-established quantitative descriptions of propagated signaling phenomena in the membrane of an axon. The findings demonstrate how intracellular conductance, the thermodynamics of magnetization, and current modulation function together in generating an action potential in a unified closed-form description. The work presented in this paper provides compelling evidence that three basic factors contribute to the propagated signaling in the membrane of an axon. It is anticipated this work will compel those in biophysics, physical biology, and in the computational neurosciences to probe deeper into the classical and quantum features of membrane magnetization and signaling. It is hoped that subsequent investigations of this sort will be advanced by the computational features of this model without having to resort to numerical methods of analysis.

  8. Colloquium: Biophysical principles of undulatory self-propulsion in granular media

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldman, Daniel I.

    2014-07-01

    Biological locomotion, movement within environments through self-deformation, encompasses a range of time and length scales in an organism. These include the electrophysiology of the nervous system, the dynamics of muscle activation, the mechanics of the skeletal system, and the interaction mechanics of such structures within natural environments like water, air, sand, and mud. Unlike the many studies of cellular and molecular scale biophysical processes, movement of entire organisms (like flies, lizards, and snakes) is less explored. Further, while movement in fluids like air and water is also well studied, little is known in detail of the mechanics that organisms use to move on and within flowable terrestrial materials such as granular media, ensembles of small particles that collectively display solid, fluid, and gaslike behaviors. This Colloquium reviews recent progress to understand principles of biomechanics and granular physics responsible for locomotion of the sandfish, a small desert-dwelling lizard that "swims" within sand using undulation of its body. Kinematic and muscle activity measurements of sand swimming using high speed x-ray imaging and electromyography are discussed. This locomotion problem poses an interesting challenge: namely, that equations that govern the interaction of the lizard with its environment do not yet exist. Therefore, complementary modeling approaches are also described: resistive force theory for granular media, multiparticle simulation modeling, and robotic physical modeling. The models reproduce biomechanical and neuromechanical aspects of sand swimming and give insight into how effective locomotion arises from the coupling of the body movement and flow of the granular medium. The argument is given that biophysical study of movement provides exciting opportunities to investigate emergent aspects of living systems that might not depend sensitively on biological details.

  9. Bioabsorbable bypass grafts biofunctionalised with RGD have enhanced biophysical properties and endothelialisation tested in vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larisa V Antonova

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Small diameter arterial bypass grafts are considered as unmet clinical need since the current grafts have poor patency of 25% within 5 years. We have developed a 3D scaffold manufactured from natural and synthetic biodegradable polymers, poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyvalerate (PHBV and poly(ε-caprolactone (PCL, respectively. Further to improve the biophysical properties as well as endothelialisation, the grafts were covalently conjugated with arginine-glycine-aspartic acid (RGD bioactive peptides. The biophysical properties as well as endothelialisation of PHBV/PCL and PCL 2 mm diameter bypass grafts were assessed with and without biofunctionalisation with RGD peptides in vitro and in vivo. Morphology of the grafts was assessed by scanning electron microscopy, whereas physico-mechanical properties were evaluated using a physiological circulating system equipped with a state of art ultrasound vascular wall tracking system. Endothelialisation of the grafts in vitro and in vivo were assessed using a cell viability assay and rat abdominal aorta replacement model, respectively. The biofunctionalisation with RGD bioactive peptides decreased mean fiber diameter and mean pore area in PHBV/PCL grafts; however, this was not the case for PCL grafts. Both PHBV/PCL and PCL grafts with RGD peptides had lower durability compared to those without; these durability values were similar to those of internal mammary artery. Modification of PHBV/PCL and PCL grafts with RGD peptides increased endothelial cell viability in vitro by a factor of 8 and enhanced the formation of an endothelial cell monolayer in vivo one month postimplantation. In conclusion, PHBV/PCL small-caliber graft can be a suitable 3D scaffold for the development of a tissue engineering arterial bypass graft.

  10. Fab-based bispecific antibody formats with robust biophysical properties and biological activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xiufeng; Sereno, Arlene J; Huang, Flora; Lewis, Steven M; Lieu, Ricky L; Weldon, Caroline; Torres, Carina; Fine, Cody; Batt, Micheal A; Fitchett, Jonathan R; Glasebrook, Andrew L; Kuhlman, Brian; Demarest, Stephen J

    2015-01-01

    A myriad of innovative bispecific antibody (BsAb) platforms have been reported. Most require significant protein engineering to be viable from a development and manufacturing perspective. Single-chain variable fragments (scFvs) and diabodies that consist only of antibody variable domains have been used as building blocks for making BsAbs for decades. The drawback with Fv-only moieties is that they lack the native-like interactions with CH1/CL domains that make antibody Fab regions stable and soluble. Here, we utilize a redesigned Fab interface to explore 2 novel Fab-based BsAbs platforms. The redesigned Fab interface designs limit heavy and light chain mixing when 2 Fabs are co-expressed simultaneously, thus allowing the use of 2 different Fabs within a BsAb construct without the requirement of one or more scFvs. We describe the stability and activity of a HER2×HER2 IgG-Fab BsAb, and compare its biophysical and activity properties with those of an IgG-scFv that utilizes the variable domains of the same parental antibodies. We also generated an EGFR × CD3 tandem Fab protein with a similar format to a tandem scFv (otherwise known as a bispecific T cell engager or BiTE). We show that the Fab-based BsAbs have superior biophysical properties compared to the scFv-based BsAbs. Additionally, the Fab-based BsAbs do not simply recapitulate the activity of their scFv counterparts, but are shown to possess unique biological activity.

  11. Combining biophysical methods for the analysis of protein complex stoichiometry and affinity in SEDPHAT

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhao, Huaying, E-mail: zhaoh3@mail.nih.gov; Schuck, Peter, E-mail: zhaoh3@mail.nih.gov [National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892 (United States)

    2015-01-01

    Global multi-method analysis for protein interactions (GMMA) can increase the precision and complexity of binding studies for the determination of the stoichiometry, affinity and cooperativity of multi-site interactions. The principles and recent developments of biophysical solution methods implemented for GMMA in the software SEDPHAT are reviewed, their complementarity in GMMA is described and a new GMMA simulation tool set in SEDPHAT is presented. Reversible macromolecular interactions are ubiquitous in signal transduction pathways, often forming dynamic multi-protein complexes with three or more components. Multivalent binding and cooperativity in these complexes are often key motifs of their biological mechanisms. Traditional solution biophysical techniques for characterizing the binding and cooperativity are very limited in the number of states that can be resolved. A global multi-method analysis (GMMA) approach has recently been introduced that can leverage the strengths and the different observables of different techniques to improve the accuracy of the resulting binding parameters and to facilitate the study of multi-component systems and multi-site interactions. Here, GMMA is described in the software SEDPHAT for the analysis of data from isothermal titration calorimetry, surface plasmon resonance or other biosensing, analytical ultracentrifugation, fluorescence anisotropy and various other spectroscopic and thermodynamic techniques. The basic principles of these techniques are reviewed and recent advances in view of their particular strengths in the context of GMMA are described. Furthermore, a new feature in SEDPHAT is introduced for the simulation of multi-method data. In combination with specific statistical tools for GMMA in SEDPHAT, simulations can be a valuable step in the experimental design.

  12. Impacts on the biophysical economy and environment of a transition to 100% renewable electricity in Australia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We investigate the impacts on the biophysical economy, employment and environment of a transition scenario to an energy-efficient, 100% renewable electricity (RE) system by 2060, based on wind, solar and biomass technologies, and an introduction of electric vehicles. We employ a CSIRO process-based model of the physical activity of Australia’s economy and environmental resources, the Australian Stocks and Flows Framework. The RE systems are assumed to be manufactured in Australia to identify possible employment benefits. In comparison with the business-as-usual (BAU) scenario, on a national scale, the RE scenario has much lower economy-wide net emissions, remaining below contemporary levels and becoming zero in the electricity sector by 2060. Compared with BAU, the RE scenario also has significantly lower industrial water use, somewhat higher materials use, slightly lower unemployment, lower net foreign debt (relative to a GDP proxy) and, resulting from the growth in electric vehicles, reduced oil imports. The GDP per capita growth, based on the physical stocks of capital and labour, is virtually the same in both scenarios. Hence, from the viewpoint of the biophysical economy, there are no major barriers to implementing policies to facilitate the transition to a 100% renewable electricity system for Australia. - Highlights: ► Simulation of a 100% renewable electricity (RE) system in a process-based model. ► The RE scenario achieves zero GHG emissions in the electricity sector by 2060. ► Consumption of secondary materials is higher and more variable in the RE scenario. ► The RE scenario has lower water use, unemployment, foreign debt and oil imports

  13. Ground- and satellite-based evidence of the biophysical mechanisms behind the greening Sahel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandt, Martin; Mbow, Cheikh; Diouf, Abdoul A; Verger, Aleixandre; Samimi, Cyrus; Fensholt, Rasmus

    2015-04-01

    After a dry period with prolonged droughts in the 1970s and 1980s, recent scientific outcome suggests that the decades of abnormally dry conditions in the Sahel have been reversed by positive anomalies in rainfall. Various remote sensing studies observed a positive trend in vegetation greenness over the last decades which is known as the re-greening of the Sahel. However, little investment has been made in including long-term ground-based data collections to evaluate and better understand the biophysical mechanisms behind these findings. Thus, deductions on a possible increment in biomass remain speculative. Our aim is to bridge these gaps and give specifics on the biophysical background factors of the re-greening Sahel. Therefore, a trend analysis was applied on long time series (1987-2013) of satellite-based vegetation and rainfall data, as well as on ground-observations of leaf biomass of woody species, herb biomass, and woody species abundance in different ecosystems located in the Sahel zone of Senegal. We found that the positive trend observed in satellite vegetation time series (+36%) is caused by an increment of in situ measured biomass (+34%), which is highly controlled by precipitation (+40%). Whereas herb biomass shows large inter-annual fluctuations rather than a clear trend, leaf biomass of woody species has doubled within 27 years (+103%). This increase in woody biomass did not reflect on biodiversity with 11 of 16 woody species declining in abundance over the period. We conclude that the observed greening in the Senegalese Sahel is primarily related to an increasing tree cover that caused satellite-driven vegetation indices to increase with rainfall reversal. PMID:25400243

  14. Remote Sensing Based Biophysical Characterization of Tropical Deciduous Forest in Central India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, R. P.; Goroshi, S.; Sharma, N. K.; Bairagi, G. D.; Sharma, R.; Jalil, P.; Jain, A.; Sonakia, A.; Parihar, J. S.

    2011-09-01

    The paper reports the measurements of biophysical parameters using field and satellite data over a tropical deciduous forest Kanha National Park (KNP), central India. Field measurement (GBH, LAI, litter, soil moisture) was carried out over ten quadrates of 0.1ha in KNP for characterization of biophysical parameters with specified measurement protocol and sampling. Satellite based remote sensing analysis (LAI, Phenology, and NPP) was carried out using multi date observations of IRS-LISS-III, IMS-1MX, SPOT-VEGETATION and EOS-MODIS instruments. Rank correlation analysis using field data collected in the selected quadrates at KNP showed Sal (Shorea robusta) is dominant forest species followed by Lendia, Jamun (Syzygium cumini), Saja, Harra and Dhawda etc. Field measurement of Sal showed GBH range from 20 cm to 170 cm. Different forest classes such as Sal; Sal mixed with Jamun, Bamboo (Dendrocalamus strictus) etc, including grasslands/scrubland were classified with overall accuracy of 85.56 percent using March, May and October multi spectral data. Sal has distinct growth characteristics (low vegetation growth/ leaf fall in March instead of May) as compared to other vegetation species. As per the Leaf Area Index (LAI) measurement using hemispherical photographs, Sal showed the highest LAI (6.95 m2/m2) during September and lowest LAI (2.63 m2/m2) during March. Overall good agreement (r= 0.79) was found between the LAI generated from LISS-III and MODIS data product. It was observed from SPOT-VEGETATION analysis that NPP varied from 8.4 tC/ha/year (dry deciduous forest) to 14.25 tC/ha/year (Moist deciduous forest) in KNP.

  15. Combining biophysical methods for the analysis of protein complex stoichiometry and affinity in SEDPHAT

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Global multi-method analysis for protein interactions (GMMA) can increase the precision and complexity of binding studies for the determination of the stoichiometry, affinity and cooperativity of multi-site interactions. The principles and recent developments of biophysical solution methods implemented for GMMA in the software SEDPHAT are reviewed, their complementarity in GMMA is described and a new GMMA simulation tool set in SEDPHAT is presented. Reversible macromolecular interactions are ubiquitous in signal transduction pathways, often forming dynamic multi-protein complexes with three or more components. Multivalent binding and cooperativity in these complexes are often key motifs of their biological mechanisms. Traditional solution biophysical techniques for characterizing the binding and cooperativity are very limited in the number of states that can be resolved. A global multi-method analysis (GMMA) approach has recently been introduced that can leverage the strengths and the different observables of different techniques to improve the accuracy of the resulting binding parameters and to facilitate the study of multi-component systems and multi-site interactions. Here, GMMA is described in the software SEDPHAT for the analysis of data from isothermal titration calorimetry, surface plasmon resonance or other biosensing, analytical ultracentrifugation, fluorescence anisotropy and various other spectroscopic and thermodynamic techniques. The basic principles of these techniques are reviewed and recent advances in view of their particular strengths in the context of GMMA are described. Furthermore, a new feature in SEDPHAT is introduced for the simulation of multi-method data. In combination with specific statistical tools for GMMA in SEDPHAT, simulations can be a valuable step in the experimental design

  16. Sustainable urban metabolism as a link between bio-physical sciences and urban planning: The BRIDGE project

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chrysoulakis, N.; Lopes, M.; San José, R.; Grimmond, C.S.B.; Jones, M.B.; Magliulo, V.; Klostermann, J.E.M.; Synnefa, A.; Mitraka, Z.; Castro, E.; González, A.; Vogt, R.; Vesala, T.; Spano, D.; Pigeon, G.; Freer-Smith, P.; Staszewski, T.; Hodges, N.; Mills, G.; Cartalis, C.

    2013-01-01

    Urban metabolism considers a city as a system with flows of energy and material between it and the environment. Recent advances in bio-physical sciences provide methods and models to estimate local scale energy, water, carbon and pollutant fluxes. However, good communication is required to provide t

  17. Biogeochemical and biophysical climate regulation services from converting native grassland to bioenergy production in the US Midwest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, X.; Zhao, K.; Abraha, M.; Gelfand, I.; Izaurralde, R. C.; Thomson, A. M.; Hamilton, S. K.; Chen, J.; Robertson, P.; Xu, M.; Liang, X. Z.

    2015-12-01

    Land use conversion to bioenergy crops production not only alters biogeochemical cycles, but also modifies surface biophysics, such as albedo and and leaf area. These biophysical perturbations subsequently change radiation budget at land surface and land-atmosphere exchange in water and energy, and ultimately influence local/regional climate. Here, we combine long-term in situ field measurements, remote sensing observations, and regional earth system modeling to improve our understanding of changes in biophysical climate regulation services from converting native grassland to perennial bioenergy crops. In the US Midwest, albedo change as a result of cultivating native grassland for cellulosic bioenergy feedstocks could enhance the net greenhouse gases (GHGs) mitigation benefit of cellulosic bioenergy production (116.5 MgCO2 ha-1) by 20% over a time horizon of 50 years. With an integrated climate-agroecosystem model, parameterized with in situ and remote sensing data, we further demonstrate that cultivating native grassland may result in noticeable difference in simulated regional climate (e.g. precipitation, temperature, and radiation budget), highlighting the importance of additionally including biophysical climate services in evaluating land-based climate mitigation activities, such as bioenergy production.

  18. A Case Study of Cognitive and Biophysical Models of Education as Linked to Anxiety and Obsessive Compulsive Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maye, Kelly M.

    2012-01-01

    Cognitive and biophysical factors have been considered contributors linked to identifiable markers of obsessive compulsive and anxiety disorders. Research demonstrates multiple causes and mixed results for the short-term success of educational programs designed to ameliorate problems that children with obsessive compulsive and anxiety disorders…

  19. Biophysical characterization of the complex between human papillomavirus E6 protein and synapse-associated protein 97

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chi, Celestine Ngang; Bach, Anders; Engström, Åke;

    2011-01-01

    The E6 protein of human papillomavirus exhibits complex interaction patterns with several host proteins and their roles in HPV mediated oncogenesis have proved challenging to study. Here we use several biophysical techniques to explore the binding of E6 to the three PDZ domains of the tumor suppr...

  20. Forster Resonance Energy Transfer and Conformational Stability of Proteins: An Advanced Biophysical Module for Physical Chemistry Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez, Katheryn M.; Schlamadinger, Diana E.; Gable, Jonathan E.; Kim, Judy E.

    2008-01-01

    Protein folding is an exploding area of research in biophysics and physical chemistry. Here, we describe the integration of several techniques, including absorption spectroscopy, fluorescence spectroscopy, and Forster resonance energy transfer (FRET) measurements, to probe important topics in protein folding. Cytochrome c is used as a model…

  1. Modelling the influence of land-use changes on biophysical and biochemical interactions at regional and global scales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devaraju, N; Bala, G; Nemani, R

    2015-09-01

    Land-use changes since the start of the industrial era account for nearly one-third of the cumulative anthropogenic CO2 emissions. In addition to the greenhouse effect of CO2 emissions, changes in land use also affect climate via changes in surface physical properties such as albedo, evapotranspiration and roughness length. Recent modelling studies suggest that these biophysical components may be comparable with biochemical effects. In regard to climate change, the effects of these two distinct processes may counterbalance one another both regionally and, possibly, globally. In this article, through hypothetical large-scale deforestation simulations using a global climate model, we contrast the implications of afforestation on ameliorating or enhancing anthropogenic contributions from previously converted (agricultural) land surfaces. Based on our review of past studies on this subject, we conclude that the sum of both biophysical and biochemical effects should be assessed when large-scale afforestation is used for countering global warming, and the net effect on global mean temperature change depends on the location of deforestation/afforestation. Further, although biochemical effects trigger global climate change, biophysical effects often cause strong local and regional climate change. The implication of the biophysical effects for adaptation and mitigation of climate change in agriculture and agroforestry sectors is discussed.

  2. Radiation physics, biophysics, and radiation biology. Progress report, December 1, 1985-November 30, 1986

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This is the annual report of the Radiological Research Laboratory of the Department of Radiation Oncology, Columbia University. The bulk of the research of the Laboratory involves basic and fundamental aims, not confined to radiotherapy. Research carried out in the Laboratory covers the determination of microdosimetry quantities, computer simulation of particle tracks, determination of oncogenic transformation, and the transfection of DNA into cells. The Hallmark of the Laboratory is the interaction between physics and biology

  3. Lincoln Laboratory Grid

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Lincoln Laboratory Grid (LLGrid) is an interactive, on-demand parallel computing system that uses a large computing cluster to enable Laboratory researchers to...

  4. NASA Space Radiation Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The NASA Space Radiation Laboratory (NSRL) at Brookhaven National Laboratory is a NASA funded facility, delivering heavy ion beams to a target area where scientists...

  5. Synthesis and characterization of mixed-ligand diimine-piperonal thiosemicarbazone complexes of ruthenium(II): Biophysical investigations and biological evaluation as anticancer and antibacterial agents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beckford, Floyd A.; Thessing, Jeffrey; Shaloski, Michael, Jr.; Canisius Mbarushimana, P.; Brock, Alyssa; Didion, Jacob; Woods, Jason; Gonzalez-Sarrías, Antonio; Seeram, Navindra P.

    2011-04-01

    We have used a novel microwave-assisted method developed in our laboratories to synthesize a series of ruthenium-thiosemicarbazone complexes. The new thiosemicarbazone ligands are derived from benzo[ d][1,3]dioxole-5-carbaldehyde (piperonal) and the complexes are formulated as [(diimine) 2Ru(TSC)](PF 6) 2 (where the TSC is the bidentate thiosemicarbazone ligand). The diimine in the complexes is either 2,2'-bipyridine or 1,10-phenanthroline. The complexes have been characterized by spectroscopic means (NMR, IR and UV-Vis) as well as by elemental analysis. We have studied the biophysical characteristics of the complexes by investigating their anti-oxidant ability as well as their ability to disrupt the function of the human topoisomerase II enzyme. The complexes are moderately strong binders of DNA with binding constants of 10 4 M -1. They are also strong binders of human serum albumin having binding constants on the order of 10 4 M -1. The complexes show good in vitro anticancer activity against human colon cancer cells, Caco-2 and HCT-116 and indeed show some cytotoxic selectivity for cancer cells. The IC 50 values range from 7 to 159 μM (after 72 h drug incubation). They also have antibacterial activity against Gram-positive strains of pathogenic bacteria with IC 50 values as low as 10 μM; little activity was seen against Gram-negative strains. It has been established that all the compounds are catalytic inhibitors of human topoisomerase II.

  6. Laboratory-acquired brucellosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fabiansen, C.; Knudsen, J.D.; Lebech, A.M.

    2008-01-01

    Brucellosis is a rare disease in Denmark. We describe one case of laboratory-acquired brucellosis from an index patient to a laboratory technician following exposure to an infected blood culture in a clinical microbiology laboratory Udgivelsesdato: 2008/6/9......Brucellosis is a rare disease in Denmark. We describe one case of laboratory-acquired brucellosis from an index patient to a laboratory technician following exposure to an infected blood culture in a clinical microbiology laboratory Udgivelsesdato: 2008/6/9...

  7. Laboratory of Chemical Physics

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Current research in the Laboratory of Chemical Physics is primarily concerned with experimental, theoretical, and computational problems in the structure, dynamics,...

  8. Embedded Processor Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Embedded Processor Laboratory provides the means to design, develop, fabricate, and test embedded computers for missile guidance electronics systems in support...

  9. COGNITIVE PERFORMANCE LABORATORY

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — This laboratory conducts basic and applied human research studies to characterize cognitive performance as influenced by militarily-relevant contextual and physical...

  10. Optical Remote Sensing Laboratory

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Optical Remote Sensing Laboratory deploys rugged, cutting-edge electro-optical instrumentation for the collection of various event signatures, with expertise in...

  11. Intelligent Optics Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Intelligent Optics Laboratory supports sophisticated investigations on adaptive and nonlinear optics; advancedimaging and image processing; ground-to-ground and...

  12. Environmental Microbiology Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Environmental Microbiology Laboratory, located in Bldg. 644 provides a dual-gas respirometer for measurement of oxygen consumption and carbon dioxide evolution...

  13. ANALYTICAL MICROBIOLOGY LABORATORY

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — This laboratory contains equipment that performs a broad array of microbiological analyses for pathogenic and spoilage microorganisms. It performs challenge studies...

  14. Neural Systems Laboratory

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — As part of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and The Institute for System Research, the Neural Systems Laboratory studies the functionality of the...

  15. Central Laboratories Services

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The TVA Central Laboratories Services is a comprehensive technical support center, offering you a complete range of scientific, engineering, and technical services....

  16. Tactical Systems Integration Laboratory

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Tactical Systems Integration Laboratory is used to design and integrate computer hardware and software and related electronic subsystems for tactical vehicles....

  17. Virtual Training Devices Laboratory

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Virtual Training Devices (VTD) Laboratory at the Life Cycle Software Engineering Center, Picatinny Arsenal, provides a software testing and support environment...

  18. FOOD SAFETY TESTING LABORATORY

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — This laboratory develops screening assays, tests and modifies biosensor equipment, and optimizes food safety testing protocols for the military and civilian sector...

  19. Space Weather Laboratory

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Space Weather Computational Laboratory is a Unix and PC based modeling and simulation facility devoted to research analysis of naturally occurring electrically...

  20. Composites Characterization Laboratory

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The purpose of the Composites Characterization Laboratory is to investigate new and/or modified matrix materials and fibers for advanced composite applications both...

  1. Rapid Prototyping Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The ARDEC Rapid Prototyping (RP) Laboratory was established in December 1992 to provide low cost RP capabilities to the ARDEC engineering community. The Stratasys,...

  2. Engineered Natural Systems Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — With its pressure vessels that simulate the pressures and temperatures found deep underground, NETL’s Engineered Natural Systems Laboratory in Pittsburgh, PA, gives...

  3. [Theme: Using Laboratories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pritchard, Jack; Braker, Clifton

    1982-01-01

    Pritchard discusses the opportunities for applied learning afforded by laboratories. Braker describes the evaluation of cognitive, affective, and psychomotor skills in the agricultural mechanics laboratory. (SK)

  4. Vehicle Development Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — FUNCTION: Supports the development of prototype deployment platform vehicles for offboard countermeasure systems. DESCRIPTION: The Vehicle Development Laboratory is...

  5. Fuels Processing Laboratory

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — NETL’s Fuels Processing Laboratory in Morgantown, WV, provides researchers with the equipment they need to thoroughly explore the catalytic issues associated with...

  6. Thermogravimetric Analysis Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — At NETL’s Thermogravimetric Analysis Laboratory in Morgantown, WV, researchers study how chemical looping combustion (CLC) can be applied to fossil energy systems....

  7. Estimating Biophysical Crop Properties by a Machine Learning Model Inversion using Hyperspectral Imagery of Different Resolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Preidl, S.; Doktor, D.

    2013-12-01

    This study investigates how image resolution and phenology affects the quality of biophysical variable estimation of different crop types. Hence, several hyperspectral at-sensor radiance images (400-2500 nm) of 1, 2 and 3 meter resolution were acquired by an AISA dual airborne system to estimate leaf chlorophyll content and leaf area index (LAI) of different crop types. The study area describes a climatic gradient that ranges from the Magdeburg Börde (130 meter a.s.l.) to the northeast of the Harz Mountain (450 meter a.s.l.), Germany. The 35 kilometer long flight strip is recorded on the same day at all three resolutions. Ground measurements were conducted simultaneously to the flight campaigns on selected crop fields. The SLC model was coupled with the atmospheric model MODTRAN4 to build up a look-up table (LUT) of simulated at-sensor radiances. To support a fast and more accurate inversion process, LUT-spectra were selected for model inversion which location in the PCA space (spanned by the first three principal components) is similar to the one of the measured spectra. A support vector regression (SVR) was trained on the reduced LUT to perform a pixel-based inversion of the hyperspectral images, subsequently. A multi-parameter sensitivity analysis was recently developed to define the most influential parameters for a reasonable model setup in the first place. This completes the development of an automated inversion process chain to estimate leaf and canopy biophysical properties. To achieve reasonable inversion results each pixel should be radiatively independent from its surrounding pixels. Image texture is used to calculate the second-order statistical variance between pixel pairs quantifying spatial heterogeneity throughout the spectral domain. The texture measurement can be employed as an uncertainty assessment of the biophysical variable estimation map. Results show that vegetated areas within the field are representing spectrally homogeneous systems. In

  8. BOLTS: a BiOphysical Larval Tracking System for Measuring Dispersal Characteristics and Marine Population Connectivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paris, C. B.; Srinivasan, A.; Kourafalou, V.; Sponaugle, S.; Cowen, R. K.

    2008-12-01

    While metapopulation research with hypothetical dispersal matrices has shown how the scales of larval dispersal, transport processes, local recruitment, and temporal and spatial variability in dispersal influence population persistence, the pattern of demographic connectivity produced by larval dispersal is still a key uncertainty. To address this problem, a coupled bio-physical model has been developed that quantifies the degree of connectivity between populations. Such spatially explicit models, forced by dynamic currents coupled to a realistic seascape and life history traits, produce dispersal kernels for a range of scales over which dispersal is practically unquantifiable by current empirical methods. The BiOphysical Larval Tracking System (BOLTS) presented here allows a Lagrangian stochastic individual-based model (IBM) to be coupled via OPENDAP framework to any 3-dimensional fields of circulation models including to domains of various resolutions through 'Lagrangian nesting'. We demonstrate the capabilities of the software in measuring the characteristics of dispersal and evaluating the variability of larval connectivity through two examples at different scales: 1) Caribbean-scale simulations of BOLTS using the large scale (resolution ~7 km) Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model (HYCOM) from the Global Data Assimilative Experiment (GODAE) provide us with expected connectivity patterns of a reef building coral. By seeding the model with a large number of active particles, it is possible to assemble dispersal kernels and migration matrices from the start (spawning) and the end point (settlement) of individual particle trajectories. Any single run is a stochastic realization of a probabilistic process, thus the full probability density function (pdf) of the kernel requires averaging over many dispersal events. The model output is further corroborated with empirical measures of gene flow among coral colonies around the Caribbean. 2) Coastal-scale simulations of BOLTS

  9. Effects of graphene oxide nanosheets on the ultrastructure and biophysical properties of the pulmonary surfactant film

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Qinglin; Jiao, Bao; Shi, Xinghua; Valle, Russell P.; Zuo, Yi Y.; Hu, Guoqing

    2015-10-01

    Graphene oxide (GO) is the most common derivative of graphene and has been used in a large range of biomedical applications. Despite considerable progress in understanding its cytotoxicity, its potential inhalation toxicity is still largely unknown. As the pulmonary surfactant (PS) film is the first line of host defense, interaction with the PS film determines the fate of the inhaled nanomaterials and their potential toxicity. Using a coarse-grained molecular dynamics model, we reported, for the first time, a novel mechanism of toxicity caused by the inhaled GO nanosheets. Upon deposition, the GO nanosheets induce pores in the PS film and thus have adverse effects on the ultrastructure and biophysical properties of the PS film. Notably, the pores induced by GO nanosheets result in increasing the compressibility of the PS film, which is an important indication of surfactant inhibition. In vitro experiments have also been conducted to study the interactions between GO and animal-derived natural PS films, qualitatively confirming the simulation results.Graphene oxide (GO) is the most common derivative of graphene and has been used in a large range of biomedical applications. Despite considerable progress in understanding its cytotoxicity, its potential inhalation toxicity is still largely unknown. As the pulmonary surfactant (PS) film is the first line of host defense, interaction with the PS film determines the fate of the inhaled nanomaterials and their potential toxicity. Using a coarse-grained molecular dynamics model, we reported, for the first time, a novel mechanism of toxicity caused by the inhaled GO nanosheets. Upon deposition, the GO nanosheets induce pores in the PS film and thus have adverse effects on the ultrastructure and biophysical properties of the PS film. Notably, the pores induced by GO nanosheets result in increasing the compressibility of the PS film, which is an important indication of surfactant inhibition. In vitro experiments have also been

  10. Integrating Economic Models with Biophysical Models in the Willamette Water 2100 Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaeger, W. K.; Plantinga, A.

    2013-12-01

    This paper highlights the human system modeling components for Willamette Water 2100, a comprehensive, highly integrated study of hydrological, ecological, and human factors affecting water scarcity in the Willamette River Basin (WRB). The project is developing a spatiotemporal simulation model to predict future trajectories of water scarcity, and to evaluate mitigation policies. Economic models of land use and water use are the main human system models in WW2100. Water scarcity depends on both supply and demand for water, and varies greatly across time and space (Jaeger et al., 2013). Thus, the locations of human water use can have enormous influence on where and when water is used, and hence where water scarcity may arise. Modeling the locations of human uses of water (e.g., urban versus agricultural) as well as human values and choices, are the principal quantitative ways that social science can contribute to research of this kind. Our models are empirically-based models of human resource allocation. Each model reflects private behavior (choices by households, farms, firms), institutions (property rights, laws, markets, regulations), public infrastructure (dams, canals, highways), and also 'external drivers' that influence the local economy (migration, population growth, national markets and policies). This paper describes the main model components, emphasizing similarities between human and biophysical components of the overall project, and the model's linkages and feedbacks relevant to our predictions of changes in water scarcity between now and 2100. Results presented include new insights from individual model components as well as available results from the integrated system model. Issues include water scarcity and water quality (temperature) for out-of-stream and instream uses, the impact of urban expansion on water use and potential flood damage. Changes in timing and variability of spring discharge with climate change, as well as changes in human uses of

  11. Energy Materials Research Laboratory (EMRL)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Energy Materials Research Laboratory at the Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) creates a cross-disciplinary laboratory facility that lends itself to the...

  12. Key importance of compression properties in the biophysical characteristics of hyaluronic acid soft-tissue fillers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gavard Molliard, Samuel; Albert, Séverine; Mondon, Karine

    2016-08-01

    Hyaluronic acid (HA) soft-tissue fillers are the most popular degradable injectable products used for correcting skin depressions and restoring facial volume loss. From a rheological perspective, HA fillers are commonly characterised through their viscoelastic properties under shear-stress. However, despite the continuous mechanical pressure that the skin applies on the fillers, compression properties in static and dynamic modes are rarely considered. In this article, three different rheological tests (shear-stress test and compression tests in static and dynamic mode) were carried out on nine CE-marked cross-linked HA fillers. Corresponding shear-stress (G', tanδ) and compression (E', tanδc, normal force FN) parameters were measured. We show here that the tested products behave differently under shear-stress and under compression even though they are used for the same indications. G' showed the expected influence on the tissue volumising capacity, and the same influence was also observed for the compression parameters E'. In conclusion, HA soft-tissue fillers exhibit widely different biophysical characteristics and many variables contribute to their overall performance. The elastic modulus G' is not the only critical parameter to consider amongst the rheological properties: the compression parameters E' and FN also provide key information, which should be taken into account for a better prediction of clinical outcomes, especially for predicting the volumising capacity and probably the ability to stimulate collagen production by fibroblasts. PMID:27093589

  13. Quantification of biophysical adaptation benefits from Climate-Smart Agriculture using a Bayesian Belief Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Nijs, Patrick J.; Berry, Nicholas J.; Wells, Geoff J.; Reay, Dave S.

    2014-10-01

    The need for smallholder farmers to adapt their practices to a changing climate is well recognised, particularly in Africa. The cost of adapting to climate change in Africa is estimated to be $20 to $30 billion per year, but the total amount pledged to finance adaptation falls significantly short of this requirement. The difficulty of assessing and monitoring when adaptation is achieved is one of the key barriers to the disbursement of performance-based adaptation finance. To demonstrate the potential of Bayesian Belief Networks for describing the impacts of specific activities on climate change resilience, we developed a simple model that incorporates climate projections, local environmental data, information from peer-reviewed literature and expert opinion to account for the adaptation benefits derived from Climate-Smart Agriculture activities in Malawi. This novel approach allows assessment of vulnerability to climate change under different land use activities and can be used to identify appropriate adaptation strategies and to quantify biophysical adaptation benefits from activities that are implemented. We suggest that multiple-indicator Bayesian Belief Network approaches can provide insights into adaptation planning for a wide range of applications and, if further explored, could be part of a set of important catalysts for the expansion of adaptation finance.

  14. Biochemical and Biophysical Characterization of Recombinant Yeast Proteasome Maturation Factor UMP1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bebiana Sá-Moura

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Protein degradation is essential for maintaining cellular homeostasis. The proteasome is the central enzyme responsible for non-lysosomal protein degradation in eukaryotic cells. Although proteasome assembly is not yet completely understood, a number of cofactors required for proper assembly and maturation have been identified. Ump1 is a short-lived maturation factor required for the efficient biogenesis of the 20S proteasome. Upon the association of the two precursor complexes, Ump1 is encased and is rapidly degraded after the proteolytic sites in the interior of the nascent proteasome are activated. In order to further understand the mechanisms behind proteasomal maturation, we expressed and purified yeast Ump1 in E. coli for biophysical and structural analysis.We show that recombinant Ump1 is purified as a mixture of different oligomeric species and that oligomerization is mediated by intermolecular disulfide bond formation involving the only cysteine residue present in the protein. Furthermore, a combination of bioinformatics tools, biochemical and structural analysis revealed that Ump1 shows characteristics of an intrinsically disordered protein, which might become structured only upon interaction with the proteasome subunits.

  15. Biophysical mechanism for ras-nanocluster formation and signaling in plasma membrane.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Gurry

    Full Text Available Ras GTPases are lipid-anchored G proteins, which play a fundamental role in cell signaling processes. Electron micrographs of immunogold-labeled Ras have shown that membrane-bound Ras molecules segregate into nanocluster domains. Several models have been developed in attempts to obtain quantitative descriptions of nanocluster formation, but all have relied on assumptions such as a constant, expression-level independent ratio of Ras in clusters to Ras monomers (cluster/monomer ratio. However, this assumption is inconsistent with the law of mass action. Here, we present a biophysical model of Ras clustering based on short-range attraction and long-range repulsion between Ras molecules in the membrane. To test this model, we performed Monte Carlo simulations and compared statistical clustering properties with experimental data. We find that we can recover the experimentally-observed clustering across a range of Ras expression levels, without assuming a constant cluster/monomer ratio or the existence of lipid rafts. In addition, our model makes predictions about the signaling properties of Ras nanoclusters in support of the idea that Ras nanoclusters act as an analog-digital-analog converter for high fidelity signaling.

  16. Biophysical characterization of G protein ectodomain of group B human respiratory syncytial virus from E. coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Wajihul Hasan; Srungaram, V L N Raghuram; Islam, Asimul; Beg, Ilyas; Haider, Md Shakir H; Ahmad, Faizan; Broor, Shobha; Parveen, Shama

    2016-07-01

    Human respiratory syncytial virus (hRSV) is an important pathogen of acute respiratory tract infection. The G protein of hRSV is a transmembrane glycoprotein that is a neutralizing antigen and is thus a vaccine candidate. In this study, synthetic codon optimized ectodomain G protein [G(ΔTM)] of BA genotype of group B hRSV was cloned, expressed, and characterized using biophysical techniques. The molar absorption coefficient and mean residue ellipticity at 222 nm ([θ]222) of G (ΔTM) was found to be 7950 M(-1) cm(-1) and -19701.7 deg cm(2) dmol(-1) respectively. It was concluded that G(ΔTM) mainly consist of α-helix (74.9%) with some amount of β-sheet (4%). The protein was stable up to 85°C without any transition curve. However, heat-induced denaturation of G(ΔTM) resulted in total loss of β-sheet whereas not much change was observed in the α-helix part of the secondary structure. It was concluded that G(ΔTM) is an α-helical protein and it is highly stable at high temperature, but could be easily denatured using high concentrations of GdmCl/urea or acidic condition. This is the first investigation of cloning, expression, and characterization of G(ΔTM) of BA viruses from India. Structural characterization of G protein will assist in drug designing and vaccine development for hRSV.

  17. Oxidized phosphatidylcholines in membrane-level cellular signaling: from biophysics to physiology and molecular pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volinsky, Roman; Kinnunen, Paavo K J

    2013-06-01

    The oxidation of lipids has been shown to impact virtually all cellular processes. The paradigm has been that this involvement is due to interference with the functions of membrane-associated proteins. It is only recently that methodological advances in molecular-level detection and identification have begun to provide insights into oxidative lipid modification and its involvement in cell signaling as well as in major diseases and inflammation. Extensive evidence suggests a correlation between lipid peroxidation and degenerative neurological diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's, as well as type 2 diabetes and cancer. Despite the obvious relevance of understanding the molecular basis of the above ailments, the exact modes of action of oxidized lipids have remained elusive. In this minireview, we summarize recent findings on the biophysical characteristics of biomembranes following oxidative derivatization of their lipids, and how these altered properties are involved in both physiological processes and major pathological conditions. Lipid-bearing, oxidatively truncated and functionalized acyl chains are known to modify membrane bulk physical properties, such as thermal phase behavior, bilayer thickness, hydration and polarity profiles, as manifest in the altered structural dynamics of lipid bilayers, leading to augmented membrane permeability, fast lipid transbilayer diffusion (flip-flop), loss of lipid asymmetry (scrambling) and phase segregation (the formation of 'rafts'). These changes, together with the generated reactive lipid derivatives, can be further expected to interfere with lipid-protein interactions, influencing metabolic pathways, causing inflammation, the execution phase in apoptosis and initiating pathological processes. PMID:23506295

  18. Biophysical Changes of Lipid Membranes in the Presence of Ethanol at Varying Concentrations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konas, Ryan M; Daristotle, John L; Harbor, Ndubuisi B; Klauda, Jeffery B

    2015-10-15

    Ethanol is widely used as an additive to gasoline, and production of ethanol can come from single-celled organisms such as yeast. We systematically studied the influence of ethanol on common lipids found in yeast plasma membranes, specifically phosphatidylserine (PS), phosphatidylethanolamine (PE), and phosphatidylcholine (PC). Molecular dynamics simulations were used to probe changes to the biophysical properties of membranes with varying equilibrated bulk ethanol concentrations less than 25 mol %. The palmitoyl oleoyl (PO, 18:1/16:0) chain was used for all lipids, and a mixed bilayer of POPE/POPS (7:3 ratio) was also simulated. Ethanol was found to interact strongly with POPC, and thus its surface area per lipid, chain order, and electron density profiles differ the most from the neat bilayer. At 12 mol % ethanol in the bulk, ethanol penetrated into the hydrophobic core for all membranes studied, but POPC had the highest penetration. Although the anionic headgroup of POPS acted as a protectant for membrane structure compared to the zwitterionic lipids, this was not the case for the POPE/POPS mixture that showed more penetration of ethanol into the membrane than the single-component membranes. To fully characterize the impact of ethanol on yeast plasma membranes, our results suggest that experiments and simulations need to consider representative mixtures of lipids that exist in vivo.

  19. ``Physical Concepts in Cell Biology,'' an upper level interdisciplinary course in cell biophysics/mathematical biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vavylonis, Dimitrios

    2009-03-01

    I will describe my experience in developing an interdisciplinary biophysics course addressed to students at the upper undergraduate and graduate level, in collaboration with colleagues in physics and biology. The students had a background in physics, biology and engineering, and for many the course was their first exposure to interdisciplinary topics. The course did not depend on a formal knowledge of equilibrium statistical mechanics. Instead, the approach was based on dynamics. I used diffusion as a universal ``long time'' law to illustrate scaling concepts. The importance of statistics and proper counting of states/paths was introduced by calculating the maximum accuracy with which bacteria can measure the concentration of diffuse chemicals. The use of quantitative concepts and methods was introduced through specific biological examples, focusing on model organisms and extremes at the cell level. Examples included microtubule dynamic instability, the search and capture model, molecular motor cooperativity in muscle cells, mitotic spindle oscillations in C. elegans, polymerization forces and propulsion of pathogenic bacteria, Brownian ratchets, bacterial cell division and MinD oscillations.

  20. Biophysical analysis of water filtration phenomenon in the roots of halophytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Kiwoong; Lee, Sang Joon

    2015-11-01

    The water management systems of plants, such as water collection and water filtration have been optimized through a long history. In this point of view, new bio-inspired technologies can be developed by mimicking the nature's strategies for the survival of the fittest. In this study, the biophysical characteristics of water filtration process in the roots of halophytes are experimentally investigated in the plant hydrodynamic point of view. To understand the functional features of the halophytes 3D morphological structure of their roots are analyzed using advanced bioimaging techniques. The surface properties of the roots of halophytes are also examined Based on the quantitatively analyzed information, water filtration phenomenon in the roots is examined. Sodium treated mangroves are soaked in sodium acting fluorescent dye solution to trace sodium ions in the roots. In addition, in vitroexperiment is carried out by using the roots. As a result, the outermost layer of the roots filters out continuously most of sodium ions. This study on developing halophytes would be helpful for understanding the water filtration mechanism of the roots of halophytes and developing a new bio inspired desalination system. This research was financially supported by the National Research Foundation (NRF) of Korea (Contract grant number: 2008-0061991).

  1. Biophysical Methods to Investigate Intrinsically Disordered Proteins: Avoiding an "Elephant and Blind Men" Situation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uversky, Vladimir N

    2015-01-01

    Intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) and hybrid proteins possessing ordered domains and intrinsically disordered protein regions (IDPRs) are highly abundant in various proteomes. They are different from ordered proteins at many levels, and an unambiguous representation of an IDP structure is a difficult task. In fact, IDPs show an extremely wide diversity in their structural properties, being able to attain extended conformations (random coil-like) or to remain globally collapsed (molten globule-like). Disorder can differently affect different parts of a protein, with some regions being more ordered than others. IDPs and IDPRs exist as dynamic ensembles, resembling "protein-clouds". IDP structures are best presented as conformational ensembles that contain highly dynamic structures interconverting on a number of timescales. The determination of a unique high-resolution structure is not possible for an isolated IDP, and a detailed structural and dynamic characterization of IDPs cannot typically be provided by a single tool. Therefore, accurate descriptions of IDPs/IDPRs rely on a multiparametric approach that includes a host of biophysical methods that can provide information on the overall compactness of IDPs and their conformational stability, shape, residual secondary structure, transient long-range contacts, regions of restricted or enhanced mobility, etc. The goal of this chapter is to provide a brief overview of some of the components of this multiparametric approach. PMID:26387104

  2. A simple biophysically plausible model for long time constants in single neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tiganj, Zoran; Hasselmo, Michael E; Howard, Marc W

    2015-01-01

    Recent work in computational neuroscience and cognitive psychology suggests that a set of cells that decay exponentially could be used to support memory for the time at which events took place. Analytically and through simulations on a biophysical model of an individual neuron, we demonstrate that exponentially decaying firing with a range of time constants up to minutes could be implemented using a simple combination of well-known neural mechanisms. In particular, we consider firing supported by calcium-controlled cation current. When the amount of calcium leaving the cell during an interspike interval is larger than the calcium influx during a spike, the overall decay in calcium concentration can be exponential, resulting in exponential decay of the firing rate. The time constant of the decay can be several orders of magnitude larger than the time constant of calcium clearance, and it could be controlled externally via a variety of biologically plausible ways. The ability to flexibly and rapidly control time constants could enable working memory of temporal history to be generalized to other variables in computing spatial and ordinal representations.

  3. Effects of quasi-steady-state reduction on biophysical models with oscillations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boie, Sebastian; Kirk, Vivien; Sneyd, James; Wechselberger, Martin

    2016-03-21

    Many biophysical models have the property that some variables in the model evolve much faster than others. A common step in the analysis of such systems is to simplify the model by assuming that the fastest variables equilibrate instantaneously, an approach that is known as quasi-steady state reduction (QSSR). QSSR is intuitively satisfying but is not always mathematically justified, with problems known to arise, for instance, in some cases in which the full model has oscillatory solutions; in this case, the simplified version of the model may have significantly different dynamics to the full model. This paper focusses on the effect of QSSR on models in which oscillatory solutions arise via one or more Hopf bifurcations. We first illustrate the problems that can arise by applying QSSR to a selection of well-known models. We then categorize Hopf bifurcations according to whether they involve fast variables, slow variables or a mixture of both, and show that Hopf bifurcations that involve only slow variables are not affected by QSSR, Hopf bifurcations that involve fast and slow variables (i.e., singular Hopf bifurcations) are generically preserved under QSSR so long as a fast variable is kept in the simplified system, and Hopf bifurcations that primarily involve fast variables may be eliminated by QSSR. Finally, we present some guidelines for the application of QSSR if one wishes to use the method while minimising the risk of inadvertently destroying essential features of the original model. PMID:26773753

  4. Discrimination And Biophysical Characterization Of Brazilian Cerrado Physiognomies With Eo-1 Hyperspectral Hyperion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miura, Tomoaki; Huete, Alfredo R.; Ferreira, Laerte G.; Sano, Edson E.

    2004-01-01

    The savanna, typically found in the sub-tropics and seasonal tropics, are the dominant vegetation biome type in the southern hemisphere, covering approximately 45% of the South America. In Brazil, the savanna, locally known as "cerrado," is the most intensely stressed biome with both natural environmental pressures (e.g., the strong seasonality in weather, extreme soil nutrient impoverishment, and widespread fire occurrences) and rapid/aggressive land conversions (Skole et al., 1994; Ratter et al., 1997). Better characterization and discrimination of cerrado physiognomies are needed in order to improve understanding of cerrado dynamics and its impact on carbon storage, nutrient dynamics, and the prospect for sustainable land use in the Brazilian cerrado biome. Satellite remote sensing have been known to be a useful tool for land cover and land use mapping (Rougharden et al., 1991; Hansen et al., 2000). However, attempts to discriminate and classify Brazilian cerrado using multi-spectral sensors (e.g., Landsat TM) and/or moderate resolution sensors (e.g., NOAA AVHRR NDVI) have often resulted in a limited success due partly to small contrasts depicted in their multiband, spectral reflectance or vegetation index values among cerrado classes (Seyler et al., 2002; Fran a and Setzer, 1998). In this study, we aimed to improve discrimination as well as biophysical characterization of the Brazilian cerrado physiognomies with hyperspectral remote sensing. We used Hyperion, the first satellite-based hyperspectral imager, onboard the Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) platform.

  5. Biophysical characterization of V3-lipopeptide liposomes influencing HIV-1 infectivity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The V3-loop of the HIV-1 gp120 alters host cell immune function and modulates infectivity. We investigated biophysical parameters of liposome constructs with embedded lipopeptides from the principle neutralizing domain of the V3-loop and their influence on viral infectivity. Dynamic light scattering measurements showed liposome supramolecular structures with hydrodynamic radius of the order of 900 and 1300 nm for plain and V3-lipopeptide liposomes. Electron paramagnetic resonance measurements showed almost identical local microenvironment. The difference in liposome hydrodynamic radius was attributed to the fluctuating ionic environment of the V3-lipopeptide liposomes. In vitro HIV-1 infectivity assays showed that plain liposomes reduced virus production in all cell cultures, probably due to the hydrophobic nature of the aggregates. Liposomes carrying V3-lipopeptides with different cationic potentials restored and even enhanced infectivity (p < 0.05). These results highlight the need for elucidation of the involvement of lipid bilayers as dynamic components in supramolecular structures and in HIV-1 fusion mechanisms

  6. EDTA-induced Membrane Fluidization and Destabilization: Biophysical Studies on Artificial Lipid Membranes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Virapong PRACHAYASITTIKUL; Chartchalerm ISARANKURA-NA-AYUDHYA; Tanawut TANTIMONGCOLWAT; Chanin NANTASENAMAT; Hans-Joachim GALLA

    2007-01-01

    The molecular mechanism of ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA)-induced membrane destabilization has been studied using a combination of four biophysical techniques on artificial lipid membranes.Data from Langmuir film balance and epifluorescence microscopy revealed the fluidization and expansion effect of EDTA on phase behavior of monolayers of either 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DPPC) or mixtures of DPPC and metal-chelating lipids, such as Nα,Nα-Bis[carboxymethyl]-Nε-[(dioctadecylamino)succinyl]-L-lysine or 1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-[N-(5-amino- 1-carboxypentyl iminodiacetic acid) succinyl]. A plausible explanation could be drawn from the electrostatic interaction between negatively charged groups of EDTA and the positively charged choline head group of DPPC.Intercalation of EDTA into the lipid membrane induced membrane curvature as elucidated by atomic force microscopy. Growth in size and shape of the membrane protrusion was found to be time-dependent upon exposure to EDTA. Further loss of material from the lipid membrane surface was monitored in real time using a quartz crystal microbalance. This indicates membrane restabilization by exclusion of the protrusions from the surface. Loss of lipid components facilitates membrane instability, leading to membrane permeabilization and lysis.

  7. Bioelectrical Signals and Ion Channels in the Modeling of Multicellular Patterns and Cancer Biophysics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cervera, Javier; Alcaraz, Antonio; Mafe, Salvador

    2016-01-01

    Bioelectrical signals and ion channels are central to spatial patterns in cell ensembles, a problem of fundamental interest in positional information and cancer processes. We propose a model for electrically connected cells based on simple biological concepts: i) the membrane potential of a single cell characterizes its electrical state; ii) the long-range electrical coupling of the multicellular ensemble is realized by a network of gap junction channels between neighboring cells; and iii) the spatial distribution of an external biochemical agent can modify the conductances of the ion channels in a cell membrane and the multicellular electrical state. We focus on electrical effects in small multicellular ensembles, ignoring slow diffusional processes. The spatio-temporal patterns obtained for the local map of cell electric potentials illustrate the normalization of regions with abnormal cell electrical states. The effects of intercellular coupling and blocking of specific channels on the electrical patterns are described. These patterns can regulate the electrically-induced redistribution of charged nanoparticles over small regions of a model tissue. The inclusion of bioelectrical signals provides new insights for the modeling of cancer biophysics because collective multicellular states show electrical coupling mechanisms that are not readily deduced from biochemical descriptions at the individual cell level. PMID:26841954

  8. Biophysically Inspired Rational Design of Structured Chimeric Substrates for DNAzyme Cascade Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakin, Matthew R.; Brown, Carl W.; Horwitz, Eli K.; Fanning, M. Leigh; West, Hannah E.; Stefanovic, Darko; Graves, Steven W.

    2014-01-01

    The development of large-scale molecular computational networks is a promising approach to implementing logical decision making at the nanoscale, analogous to cellular signaling and regulatory cascades. DNA strands with catalytic activity (DNAzymes) are one means of systematically constructing molecular computation networks with inherent signal amplification. Linking multiple DNAzymes into a computational circuit requires the design of substrate molecules that allow a signal to be passed from one DNAzyme to another through programmed biochemical interactions. In this paper, we chronicle an iterative design process guided by biophysical and kinetic constraints on the desired reaction pathways and use the resulting substrate design to implement heterogeneous DNAzyme signaling cascades. A key aspect of our design process is the use of secondary structure in the substrate molecule to sequester a downstream effector sequence prior to cleavage by an upstream DNAzyme. Our goal was to develop a concrete substrate molecule design to achieve efficient signal propagation with maximal activation and minimal leakage. We have previously employed the resulting design to develop high-performance DNAzyme-based signaling systems with applications in pathogen detection and autonomous theranostics. PMID:25347066

  9. Biophysically inspired rational design of structured chimeric substrates for DNAzyme cascade engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakin, Matthew R; Brown, Carl W; Horwitz, Eli K; Fanning, M Leigh; West, Hannah E; Stefanovic, Darko; Graves, Steven W

    2014-01-01

    The development of large-scale molecular computational networks is a promising approach to implementing logical decision making at the nanoscale, analogous to cellular signaling and regulatory cascades. DNA strands with catalytic activity (DNAzymes) are one means of systematically constructing molecular computation networks with inherent signal amplification. Linking multiple DNAzymes into a computational circuit requires the design of substrate molecules that allow a signal to be passed from one DNAzyme to another through programmed biochemical interactions. In this paper, we chronicle an iterative design process guided by biophysical and kinetic constraints on the desired reaction pathways and use the resulting substrate design to implement heterogeneous DNAzyme signaling cascades. A key aspect of our design process is the use of secondary structure in the substrate molecule to sequester a downstream effector sequence prior to cleavage by an upstream DNAzyme. Our goal was to develop a concrete substrate molecule design to achieve efficient signal propagation with maximal activation and minimal leakage. We have previously employed the resulting design to develop high-performance DNAzyme-based signaling systems with applications in pathogen detection and autonomous theranostics.

  10. A Combinatorial Approach to Biophysically Characterise Chemokine-Glycan Binding Affinities for Drug Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanja Gerlza

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Chemokine binding to glycosaminoglycans (GAGs is recognised to be an important step in inflammation and other pathological disorders like tumor growth and metastasis. Although different ways and strategies to interfere with these interactions are being pursued, no major breakthrough in the development of glycan-targeting drugs has been reported so far. We have engineered CXCL8 towards a dominant-negative form of this chemokine (dnCXCL8 which was shown to be highly active in various inflammatory animal models due to its inability to bind/activate the cognate CXCL8 GPC receptors on neutrophils in combination with its significantly increased GAG-binding affinity [1]. For the development of GAG-targeting chemokine-based biopharmaceuticals, we have established a repertoire of methods which allow the quantification of protein-GAG interactions. Isothermal fluorescence titration (IFT, surface plasmon resonance (SPR, isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC, and a novel ELISA-like competition assay (ELICO have been used to determine Kd and IC50 values for CXCL8 and dnCXCL8 interacting with heparin and heparan sulfate (HS, the proto-typical members of the GAG family. Although the different methods gave different absolute affinities for the four protein-ligand pairs, the relative increase in GAG-binding affinity of dnCXCL8 compared to the wild type chemokine was found by all methods. In combination, these biophysical methods allow to discriminate between unspecific and specific protein-GAG interactions.

  11. Photophysics of Fluorescent Probes for Single-Molecule Biophysics and Super-Resolution Imaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ha, Taekjip; Tinnefeld, Philip

    2012-05-01

    Single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy and super-resolution microscopy are important elements of the ongoing technical revolution to reveal biochemical and cellular processes in unprecedented clarity and precision. Demands placed on the photophysical properties of the fluorophores are stringent and drive the choice of appropriate probes. Such fluorophores are not simple light bulbs of a certain color and brightness but instead have their own “personalities” regarding spectroscopic parameters, redox properties, size, water solubility, photostability, and several other factors. Here, we review the photophysics of fluorescent probes, both organic fluorophores and fluorescent proteins, used in applications such as particle tracking, single-molecule FRET, stoichiometry determination, and super-resolution imaging. Of particular interest is the thiol-induced blinking of Cy5, a curse for single-molecule biophysical studies that was later overcome using Trolox through a reducing/oxidizing system but a boon for super-resolution imaging owing to the controllable photoswitching. Understanding photophysics is critical in the design and interpretation of single-molecule experiments.

  12. Distinct biophysical mechanisms of focal adhesion kinase mechanoactivation by different extracellular matrix proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seong, Jihye; Tajik, Arash; Sun, Jie; Guan, Jun-Lin; Humphries, Martin J; Craig, Susan E; Shekaran, Asha; García, Andrés J; Lu, Shaoying; Lin, Michael Z; Wang, Ning; Wang, Yingxiao

    2013-11-26

    Matrix mechanics controls cell fate by modulating the bonds between integrins and extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins. However, it remains unclear how fibronectin (FN), type 1 collagen, and their receptor integrin subtypes distinctly control force transmission to regulate focal adhesion kinase (FAK) activity, a crucial molecular signal governing cell adhesion/migration. Here we showed, using a genetically encoded FAK biosensor based on fluorescence resonance energy transfer, that FN-mediated FAK activation is dependent on the mechanical tension, which may expose its otherwise hidden FN synergy site to integrin α5. In sharp contrast, the ligation between the constitutively exposed binding motif of type 1 collagen and its receptor integrin α2 was surprisingly tension-independent to induce sufficient FAK activation. Although integrin α subunit determines mechanosensitivity, the ligation between α subunit and the ECM proteins converges at the integrin β1 activation to induce FAK activation. We further discovered that the interaction of the N-terminal protein 4.1/ezrin/redixin/moesin basic patch with phosphatidylinositol 4,5-biphosphate is crucial during cell adhesion to maintain the FAK activation from the inhibitory effect of nearby protein 4.1/ezrin/redixin/moesin acidic sites. Therefore, different ECM proteins either can transmit or can shield from mechanical forces to regulate cellular functions, with the accessibility of ECM binding motifs by their specific integrin α subunits determining the biophysical mechanisms of FAK activation during mechanotransduction.

  13. Effects of resveratrol on membrane biophysical properties: relevance for its pharmacological effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brittes, J; Lúcio, M; Nunes, C; Lima, J L F C; Reis, S

    2010-11-01

    The current study gathers a range of spectrophotometric and spectrofluorimetric techniques to systematically monitor the effects of resveratrol (trans-3,5,4'-trihydrostilbene) on the biophysical properties of membrane model systems consisting of unilamellar liposomes of phosphatidylcholine (DPPC) with the ultimate goal of relating these effects with some of the well documented pharmacological properties of this compound, and clarifying some controversial results reported on the literature. Physiological conditions have been pursued, such as a buffered pH control with adjusted ionic strength similar to the blood plasma conditions (pH 7.4, I=0.1M) and the study at different membrane physical states (gel phase and fluid phase) for the assessment of resveratrol-membrane: aqueous partition coefficient by derivative spectroscopy. Results obtained by fluorescence quenching and anisotropy studies indicate that resveratrol has a membrane fluidizing effect and is able to permeate the membrane even in the gel phase. These results mirror the well described antioxidant effect of resveratrol, since antioxidants have to reach peroxidised rigid membranes and increase membrane fluidity in order to interact more efficiently with lipid radicals in the disordered lipid bilayer. Location of resveratrol pointed also to a membrane distribution that is favourable for scavenging the lipid radicals and was elucidated using probes positioned at different membrane depths suggesting that this compound penetrates into the acyl membrane region but also positions its polar hydroxyl group near the headgroup region of the membrane. PMID:20691168

  14. Indigenous community health and climate change: integrating biophysical and social science indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donatuto, Jamie; Grossman, Eric E.; Konovsky, John; Grossman, Sarah; Campbell, Larry W.

    2014-01-01

    This article describes a pilot study evaluating the sensitivity of Indigenous community health to climate change impacts on Salish Sea shorelines (Washington State, United States and British Columbia, Canada). Current climate change assessments omit key community health concerns, which are vital to successful adaptation plans, particularly for Indigenous communities. Descriptive scaling techniques, employed in facilitated workshops with two Indigenous communities, tested the efficacy of ranking six key indicators of community health in relation to projected impacts to shellfish habitat and shoreline archaeological sites stemming from changes in the biophysical environment. Findings demonstrate that: when shellfish habitat and archaeological resources are impacted, so is Indigenous community health; not all community health indicators are equally impacted; and, the community health indicators of highest concern are not necessarily the same indicators most likely to be impacted. Based on the findings and feedback from community participants, exploratory trials were successful; Indigenous-specific health indicators may be useful to Indigenous communities who are assessing climate change sensitivities and creating adaptation plans.

  15. Course on Bioelectrochemistry which was the 11th International School of Biophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Blank, Martin

    1983-01-01

    This is the first course devoted to bioelectrochemistry held within the frame­ work of the International School of Biophysics. Although this branch of scientific research is already about two centuries old, as a truly independent one it has been in a stage of lively development since only a few decades ago and this is why a first course at the E. Majorana Center was devoted to it. Since bioelectrochemistry consists of many sub-fields, it is impossible to include, even superficially, all of them in a short course lasting just a week, and therefore the chapter of redox-reactions was chosen for this first course as being most general in character. But even restricting the course to redox-reactions, only a few subjects could be included and therefore the choice among them was made considering the most general guidelines that could serve as a basis for the further study of individual problems. In this way we hope to give a sound basis to the study of and to stimulate further interest in this branch of both biolog...

  16. Influence of expressed TRAIL on biophysical properties of the human leukemic cell line Jurkat

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Kai CHEN; Zong Yao WEN; Shu CHIEN; Dan LI; Yu Hui JIANG; Wei Juan YAO; Xin Juan WANG; Xiao Chao WEI; Jing GAO; Li De XIE; Zong Yi YAN

    2004-01-01

    The cDNA fragment of human TRAIL (TNF-related apoptosis inducing ligand) was cloned into RevTet-On, a Tetregulated and high-level gene expression system. The gene expression system was constructed in a human leukemic cell line: Jurkat. By using RevTet-On TRAIL gene expression system in Jurkat as a cell model, we studied the influence of TRAIL gene on the changes of cellular apoptosis before and after the TRAIL gene expression, which was induced by adding tetracycline derivative doxycycline (Dox). The results indicated that the cellular apoptosis ratio was largely dependent on the TRAIL gene expression level. Moreover, it was found that the apoptosis-inducing TRAIL could cause significant changes in the biophysical properties of Jurkat cells. The cell surface charge density decreased, the membrane fluidity declined, the elastic coefficients K1 increased, and the proportion of o-helix in membrane protein secondary structure decreased. Thus, the apoptosis-inducing TRAIL gene caused significant changes on the biomechanic properties of Jurkat cells.

  17. Improving the biophysical properties of anti-ricin single-domain antibodies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kendrick B. Turner

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Single-domain antibodies (sdAbs derived from heavy-chain only antibodies produced in camelids are attractive immunoreagents due to their small size, high affinity, and ability to refold and retain binding activity after denaturation. It has been observed that some sdAbs, however, exhibit undesirable properties including reduced solubility when subjected to heating or upon long-term storage at production-relevant concentrations, which can limit their usefulness. Using a multi-step, rational design approach that included consensus-sequence driven sequence repairs, the alteration of net protein charge, and the introduction of non-native disulfide bonds, augmented solubility and increased melting temperatures were achieved. The improved sdAbs tolerated storage in solution at high concentration (10 mg/mL and were able to withstand multiple cycles of heating to high temperature (70 °C. This work demonstrates a pathway for improving the biophysical characteristics of sdAbs which is essential for expanding their utility for both diagnostic as well as therapeutic applications.

  18. Functional imaging in oncology. Biophysical basis and technical approaches. Vol. 1

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Luna, Antonio [Health Time Group, Jaen (Spain); University Hospitals, Case Western Reserve Univ., Cleveland, OH (United States). Dept. of Radiology; Vilanova, Joan C. [Clinica Girona - Hospital Sta. Caterina, Girona (Spain); Hygino da Cruz, L. Celso Jr. [CDPI and IRM, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil). Dept. of Radiology; Rossi, Santiago E. (ed.) [Centro de Diagnostico, Buenos Aires (Argentina)

    2014-07-01

    Easy-to-read manual on new functional imaging techniques in oncology. Explains current clinical applications and outlines future avenues. Includes numerous high-quality illustrations to highlight the major teaching points. In the new era of functional and molecular imaging, both currently available imaging biomarkers and biomarkers under development are expected to lead to major changes in the management of oncological patients. This well-illustrated two-volume book is a practical manual on the various imaging techniques capable of delivering functional information on cancer, including preclinical and clinical imaging techniques, based on US, CT, MRI, PET and hybrid modalities. This first volume explains the biophysical basis for these functional imaging techniques and describes the techniques themselves. Detailed information is provided on the imaging of cancer hallmarks, including angiogenesis, tumor metabolism, and hypoxia. The techniques and their roles are then discussed individually, covering the full range of modalities in clinical use as well as new molecular and functional techniques. The value of a multiparametric approach is also carefully considered.

  19. Biophysical stability of hyFc fusion protein with regards to buffers and various excipients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Jun Yeul; Kim, Nam Ah; Lim, Dae Gon; Eun, Chang-yong; Choi, Donghoon; Jeong, Seong Hoon

    2016-05-01

    A novel non-cytolytic hybrid Fc (hyFc) with an intact Ig structure without any mutation in the hyFc region, was developed to construct a long-acting agonistic protein. The stability of interleukin-7 (IL-7) fused with the hyFc (GXN-04) was evaluated to develop early formulations. Various biophysical methods were utilized and three different buffer systems with various pH ranges were investigated including histidine-acetate, sodium citrate, and tris buffers. Various excipients were incorporated into the systems to obtain optimum protein stability. Two evident thermal transitions were observed with the unfolding of IL-7 and hyFc. The Tm and ΔH increased with pH, suggesting increased conformational stability. Increased Z-average size with PDI and decreased zeta potential with pH increase, with the exception of tris buffer, showed aggregation issues. Moreover, tris buffer at higher pH showed aggregation peaks from DLS. Non-ionic surfactants were effective against agitation by outcompeting protein molecules for hydrophobic surfaces. Sucrose and sorbitol accelerated protein aggregation during agitation, but exhibited a protective effect against oxidation, with preferential exclusion favoring the compact states of GXN-04. The stability of GXN-04 was varied by basal buffers and excipients, hence the buffers and excipients need to be evaluated carefully to achieve the maximum stability of proteins. PMID:26851357

  20. Biophysically inspired rational design of structured chimeric substrates for DNAzyme cascade engineering.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew R Lakin

    Full Text Available The development of large-scale molecular computational networks is a promising approach to implementing logical decision making at the nanoscale, analogous to cellular signaling and regulatory cascades. DNA strands with catalytic activity (DNAzymes are one means of systematically constructing molecular computation networks with inherent signal amplification. Linking multiple DNAzymes into a computational circuit requires the design of substrate molecules that allow a signal to be passed from one DNAzyme to another through programmed biochemical interactions. In this paper, we chronicle an iterative design process guided by biophysical and kinetic constraints on the desired reaction pathways and use the resulting substrate design to implement heterogeneous DNAzyme signaling cascades. A key aspect of our design process is the use of secondary structure in the substrate molecule to sequester a downstream effector sequence prior to cleavage by an upstream DNAzyme. Our goal was to develop a concrete substrate molecule design to achieve efficient signal propagation with maximal activation and minimal leakage. We have previously employed the resulting design to develop high-performance DNAzyme-based signaling systems with applications in pathogen detection and autonomous theranostics.

  1. Wartime spine injuries: understanding the improvised explosive device and biophysics of blast trauma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Daniel G; Lehman, Ronald A; Carragee, Eugene J

    2012-09-01

    The improvised explosive device (IED) has been the most significant threat by terrorists worldwide. Blast trauma has produced a wide pattern of combat spinal column injuries not commonly experienced in the civilian community. Unfortunately, explosion-related injuries have also become a widespread reality of civilian life throughout the world, and civilian medical providers who are involved in emergency trauma care must be prepared to manage casualties from terrorist attacks using high-energy explosive devices. Treatment decisions for complex spine injuries after blast trauma require special planning, taking into consideration many different factors and the complicated multiple organ system injuries not normally experienced at most civilian trauma centers. Therefore, an understanding about the effects of blast trauma by spine surgeons in the community has become imperative, as the battlefield has been brought closer to home in many countries through domestic terrorism and mass casualty situations, with the lines blurred between military and civilian trauma. We set out to provide the spine surgeon with a brief overview on the use of IEDs for terrorism and the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan and also a perspective on the biophysics of blast trauma.

  2. Effects of graphene oxide nanosheets on the ultrastructure and biophysical properties of the pulmonary surfactant film.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Qinglin; Jiao, Bao; Shi, Xinghua; Valle, Russell P; Zuo, Yi Y; Hu, Guoqing

    2015-11-21

    Graphene oxide (GO) is the most common derivative of graphene and has been used in a large range of biomedical applications. Despite considerable progress in understanding its cytotoxicity, its potential inhalation toxicity is still largely unknown. As the pulmonary surfactant (PS) film is the first line of host defense, interaction with the PS film determines the fate of the inhaled nanomaterials and their potential toxicity. Using a coarse-grained molecular dynamics model, we reported, for the first time, a novel mechanism of toxicity caused by the inhaled GO nanosheets. Upon deposition, the GO nanosheets induce pores in the PS film and thus have adverse effects on the ultrastructure and biophysical properties of the PS film. Notably, the pores induced by GO nanosheets result in increasing the compressibility of the PS film, which is an important indication of surfactant inhibition. In vitro experiments have also been conducted to study the interactions between GO and animal-derived natural PS films, qualitatively confirming the simulation results.

  3. Biophysical activity of animal-derived exogenous surfactants mixed with rifampicin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolomaznik, M; Calkovska, A; Herting, E; Stichtenoth, G

    2015-01-01

    Exogenous pulmonary surfactant is a potential delivery system for topical medications via the conducting airways. Due to the sensitivity to inactivation of surfactant, mutual interaction with the shipped drug should be evaluated. Little is known about the interactions between surfactant and antimicrobial drugs. The aim of the present study was to evaluate whether biophysical properties of animal-derived surfactants are modified by the bactericidal antibiotic rifampicin. An intracellular activity and a broad antimicrobiotic spectrum toward Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria make rifampicin an interesting substance against pulmonary infections. Curosurf® (porcine surfactant from minced lungs) and Survanta® (bovine surfactant extract) were diluted to 2.5-5.0 mg/ml of phospholipids in 0.9 % NaCl and rifampicin (RIF) was added at 1, 5, and 10 % (w/w). Minimum (γ(min)) and maximum (γ(max)) surface tension of a cyclically compressed bubble in the mixture was assessed with a pulsating bubble surfactometer. After 5 min, γ(min) of Survanta at a concentration of 3 mg/ml was significantly increased after addition of 5 and 10 % RIF (both p surfactant is able to retain good surface activity when mixed with antibiotics.

  4. Magnetic nanoparticles for biophysical applications synthesized by high-power physical dispersion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Safronov, A.P., E-mail: safronov@iep.uran.ru [Ural Federal University, Yekaterinburg (Russian Federation); Beketov, I.V. [Ural Federal University, Yekaterinburg (Russian Federation); Institute of Elecrophysics, Ural branch of RAS, Yekaterinburg (Russian Federation); Tyukova, I.S. [Ural Federal University, Yekaterinburg (Russian Federation); Medvedev, A.I. [Ural Federal University, Yekaterinburg (Russian Federation); Institute of Elecrophysics, Ural branch of RAS, Yekaterinburg (Russian Federation); Samatov, O.M.; Murzakaev, A.M. [Institute of Elecrophysics, Ural branch of RAS, Yekaterinburg (Russian Federation)

    2015-06-01

    The low cost and high output methods of high-power physical dispersion: the electrical explosion of wire and the laser target evaporation were elaborated for the production of iron oxide magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) with controlled dispersion parameters and highly reproducible functional properties. The synthesized MNPs were spherical in shape with mean diameter 10 nm and lognormal particle size distribution. The phase composition, shape, particle size and functional properties of MNPs were cross-examined by a variety of contemporary experimental techniques. The phase structure of MNPs corresponds to the inverse spinel of magnetite. Meanwhile, due to the non-equilibrium conditions of the dispersion chemical composition of MNPs is close to maghemite—γ-Fe{sub 2}O{sub 3}. Their magnetic properties are reproducible and very close to the single domain superparamagnetic behavior. The stability of the suspensions of these MNPs and their applicability in the biophysical purposes such as magneto-induced heating have been demonstrated. - Highlights: • We present two methods of low-cost and high output production of iron oxide nanoparticles. • We obtained 10 nm spherical maghemite nanoparticles with close to superparamagnetic behavior. • The suspensions of obtained nanoparticles are stable to salt in physiological concentration. • Magneto-induced heating of suspensions fits well with the theoretical predictions.

  5. Effects of vegetable oils on biochemical and biophysical properties of membrane retinal pigment epithelium cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Said, Toihiri; Tremblay-Mercier, Jennifer; Berrougui, Hicham; Rat, Patrice; Khalil, Abdelouahed

    2013-10-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of vegetable oil enrichment of retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells on their biochemical and biophysical properties. For this, RPE cells were incubated with 4 different vegetables oils (olive oil, corn oil, argan oil, and camelina oil). The cytotoxicity of these vegetable oils was assessed in vivo on 8-week-old mice and in vitro by using the neutral red and YO-PRO-1 tests. Membrane fluidity was evaluated by fluorescence anisotropy using the fluorescent probe diphenylhexatriene, and membrane fatty acid composition was assessed by gas chromatography. None of the oils tested displayed cytotoxic effects. In vitro, omega-3 rich oils improved membrane fluidity by 47% compared with the control cells. The omega-3 PUFA content within membranes decreased by 38% to 55% when cells were incubated separately with olive oil, corn oil, or argan oil, and increased when cells were incubated with a mixture of those oils, or with camelina oil alone (50% and 103% increase, respectively). Our results show that the fatty acids in vegetable oil incorporate into retinal cells and increase the plasma membrane fluidity.

  6. Bioelectrical Signals and Ion Channels in the Modeling of Multicellular Patterns and Cancer Biophysics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cervera, Javier; Alcaraz, Antonio; Mafe, Salvador

    2016-01-01

    Bioelectrical signals and ion channels are central to spatial patterns in cell ensembles, a problem of fundamental interest in positional information and cancer processes. We propose a model for electrically connected cells based on simple biological concepts: i) the membrane potential of a single cell characterizes its electrical state; ii) the long-range electrical coupling of the multicellular ensemble is realized by a network of gap junction channels between neighboring cells; and iii) the spatial distribution of an external biochemical agent can modify the conductances of the ion channels in a cell membrane and the multicellular electrical state. We focus on electrical effects in small multicellular ensembles, ignoring slow diffusional processes. The spatio-temporal patterns obtained for the local map of cell electric potentials illustrate the normalization of regions with abnormal cell electrical states. The effects of intercellular coupling and blocking of specific channels on the electrical patterns are described. These patterns can regulate the electrically-induced redistribution of charged nanoparticles over small regions of a model tissue. The inclusion of bioelectrical signals provides new insights for the modeling of cancer biophysics because collective multicellular states show electrical coupling mechanisms that are not readily deduced from biochemical descriptions at the individual cell level. PMID:26841954

  7. Effect of GnRH antagonist on follicular development and uterine biophysical profile in controlled ovarian stimulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhawana Tiwary

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Background: Objective of current study was to assess the effect of GnRH antagonist on follicular development, premature luteinization, uterine biophysical profile and pregnancy rate in controlled ovarian stimulation with clomiphene and gonadotropins for intrauterine insemination in women with unexplained infertility. Methods: Randomised controlled trial. Minimal stimulation protocol with or without GnRH antagonist was compared. Setting: Infertility clinic, PGIMER, Chandigarh. Patients: Couples with unexplained infertility, age of female partner between 20-39 years. Intervention: GnRH antagonist 0.25 mg since follicle size 14 mm till hCG administration. Main outcome measures: Follicle characteristics, premature luteinisation, uterine biophysical profile and pregnancy rate. Results: The mean number of follicles recruited in group A was 2.32 +/- 1.01 while that in group B (receiving GnRH antagonist it was 4.10 +/- 1.69. Statistically significant increase in total biophysical profile score was observed in periovulatory phase in the antagonist group. 40% women in group A had premature luteinization whereas only 4% women in group B suffered from premature luteinization. 20% women who received GnRH antagonist conceived against only 6% in group A, this difference however was not statistically significant Conclusions: GnRH antagonist has a role in increasing the number of follicles recruited. Furthermore, GnRH antagonist can improve the total uterine biophysical profile score by improving the endometrial thickness, endometrial pattern, blood flow and decreasing the impedance to the blood flow in uterine artery. The drug can potentially help in improving pregnancy rates by decreasing the rate of premature luteinisation. [Int J Reprod Contracept Obstet Gynecol 2015; 4(1.000: 157-163

  8. Obtaining biophysical measurements of woody vegetation from high resolution digital aerial photography in tropical and arid environments: Northern Territory, Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staben, G. W.; Lucieer, A.; Evans, K. G.; Scarth, P.; Cook, G. D.

    2016-10-01

    Biophysical parameters obtained from woody vegetation are commonly measured using field based techniques which require significant investment in resources. Quantitative measurements of woody vegetation provide important information for ecological studies investigating landscape change. The fine spatial resolution of aerial photography enables identification of features such as trees and shrubs. Improvements in spatial and spectral resolution of digital aerial photographic sensors have increased the possibility of using these data in quantitative remote sensing. Obtaining biophysical measurements from aerial photography has the potential to enable it to be used as a surrogate for the collection of field data. In this study quantitative measurements obtained from digital aerial photography captured at ground sampling distance (GSD) of 15 cm (n = 50) and 30 cm (n = 52) were compared to woody biophysical parameters measured from 1 ha field plots. Supervised classification of the aerial photography using object based image analysis was used to quantify woody and non-woody vegetation components in the imagery. There was a high correlation (r ≥ 0.92) between all field measured woody canopy parameters and aerial derived green woody cover measurements, however only foliage projective cover (FPC) was found to be statistically significant (paired t-test; α = 0.01). There was no significant difference between measurements derived from imagery captured at either GSD of 15 cm and 30 cm over the same field site (n = 20). Live stand basal area (SBA) (m2 ha-1) was predicted from the aerial photographs by applying an allometric equation developed between field-measured live SBA and woody FPC. The results show that there was very little difference between live SBA predicted from FPC measured in the field or from aerial photography. The results of this study show that accurate woody biophysical parameters can be obtained from aerial photography from a range of woody vegetation

  9. In vitro inhibition of biophysical surface properties and change in ultrastructures of exogenous pulmonary surfactant by albumin or fibrinogen.

    OpenAIRE

    Park, J.; Bae, C. W.; Choi, Y. M.

    1998-01-01

    In order to observe the effects of serum albumin and fibrinogen on biophysical surface properties and the morphology of pulmonary surfactant in vitro, we measured the surface adsorption rate, dynamic minimum and maximum surface tension (min-, max-ST) by Pulsating Bubble Surfactometer, and demonstrated ultrastructures on a series of mixtures with varying concentrations of albumin or fibrinogen and Surfactant-TA. The albumin and fibrinogen significantly inhibited the adsorption rate and ST-lowe...

  10. A Biophysical Model of CRISPR/Cas9 Activity for Rational Design of Genome Editing and Gene Regulation

    OpenAIRE

    Farasat, Iman; Salis, Howard M.

    2016-01-01

    The ability to precisely modify genomes and regulate specific genes will greatly accelerate several medical and engineering applications. The CRISPR/Cas9 (Type II) system binds and cuts DNA using guide RNAs, though the variables that control its on-target and off-target activity remain poorly characterized. Here, we develop and parameterize a system-wide biophysical model of Cas9-based genome editing and gene regulation to predict how changing guide RNA sequences, DNA superhelical densities, ...

  11. A Biophysical Model of CRISPR/Cas9 Activity for Rational Design of Genome Editing and Gene Regulation.

    OpenAIRE

    Iman Farasat; Salis, Howard M.

    2016-01-01

    The ability to precisely modify genomes and regulate specific genes will greatly accelerate several medical and engineering applications. The CRISPR/Cas9 (Type II) system binds and cuts DNA using guide RNAs, though the variables that control its on-target and off-target activity remain poorly characterized. Here, we develop and parameterize a system-wide biophysical model of Cas9-based genome editing and gene regulation to predict how changing guide RNA sequences, DNA superhelical densities, ...

  12. A biophysical model of brain deformation to simulate and analyze longitudinal MRIs of patients with Alzheimer's disease

    OpenAIRE

    Khanal, Bishesh; Lorenzi, Marco; Ayache, Nicholas; Pennec, Xavier

    2016-01-01

    We propose a framework for developing a comprehensive biophysical model that could predict and simulate realistic longitudinal MRIs of patients with Alzheimer's Disease (AD). The framework includes three major building blocks: i) Atrophy generation ii) Brain deformation iii) Realistic MRI generation. Within this framework, this paper focuses on a detailed implementation of the brain deformation block with a carefully designed biomechanics-based tissue loss model. For a given baseline brain MR...

  13. Statistical Distances and Their Applications to Biophysical Parameter Estimation: Information Measures, M-Estimates, and Minimum Contrast Methods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter R. J. North

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Radiative transfer models predicting the bidirectional reflectance factor (BRF of leaf canopies are powerful tools that relate biophysical parameters such as leaf area index (LAI, fractional vegetation cover fV and the fraction of photosynthetically active radiation absorbed by the green parts of the vegetation canopy (fAPAR to remotely sensed reflectance data. One of the most successful approaches to biophysical parameter estimation is the inversion of detailed radiative transfer models through the construction of Look-Up Tables (LUTs. The solution of the inverse problem requires additional information on canopy structure, soil background and leaf properties, and the relationships between these parameters and the measured reflectance data are often nonlinear. The commonly used approach for optimization of a solution is based on minimization of the least squares estimate between model and observations (referred to as cost function or distance; here we will also use the terms “statistical distance” or “divergence” or “metric”, which are common in the statistical literature. This paper investigates how least-squares minimization and alternative distances affect the solution to the inverse problem. The paper provides a comprehensive list of different cost functions from the statistical literature, which can be divided into three major classes: information measures, M-estimates and minimum contrast methods. We found that, for the conditions investigated, Least Square Estimation (LSE is not an optimal statistical distance for the estimation of biophysical parameters. Our results indicate that other statistical distances, such as the two power measures, Hellinger, Pearson chi-squared measure, Arimoto and Koenker–Basset distances result in better estimates of biophysical parameters than LSE; in some cases the parameter estimation was improved by 15%.

  14. The conformational stability and biophysical properties of the eukaryotic thioredoxins of Pisum sativum are not family-conserved.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Aguado-Llera

    Full Text Available Thioredoxins (TRXs are ubiquitous proteins involved in redox processes. About forty genes encode TRX or TRX-related proteins in plants, grouped in different families according to their subcellular localization. For instance, the h-type TRXs are located in cytoplasm or mitochondria, whereas f-type TRXs have a plastidial origin, although both types of proteins have an eukaryotic origin as opposed to other TRXs. Herein, we study the conformational and the biophysical features of TRXh1, TRXh2 and TRXf from Pisum sativum. The modelled structures of the three proteins show the well-known TRX fold. While sharing similar pH-denaturations features, the chemical and thermal stabilities are different, being PsTRXh1 (Pisum sativum thioredoxin h1 the most stable isoform; moreover, the three proteins follow a three-state denaturation model, during the chemical-denaturations. These differences in the thermal- and chemical-denaturations result from changes, in a broad sense, of the several ASAs (accessible surface areas of the proteins. Thus, although a strong relationship can be found between the primary amino acid sequence and the structure among TRXs, that between the residue sequence and the conformational stability and biophysical properties is not. We discuss how these differences in the biophysical properties of TRXs determine their unique functions in pea, and we show how residues involved in the biophysical features described (pH-titrations, dimerizations and chemical-denaturations belong to regions involved in interaction with other proteins. Our results suggest that the sequence demands of protein-protein function are relatively rigid, with different protein-binding pockets (some in common for each of the three proteins, but the demands of structure and conformational stability per se (as long as there is a maintained core, are less so.

  15. Zimpro's biophysical treatment and wet-air-regeneration-system engineering study for H-COAL wastewater

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Churton, B.M.

    1982-12-01

    As part of an overall environmental evaluation of the H-COAL liquefaction process, sour water treatability studies have been performed. These studies consisted of the following major components: H-COAL sour and stripped water characterization study; Zimpro's biophysical treatability and characterization study on H-COAL Wastwater; Zimpro's biophysical treatment system stress testing; Zimpro's biophysical treatment and wet air regeneration system engineering study; engineering analysis of reuse concepts for treated H-COAL wastewater; and evaluation of reverse osmosis treatment of treated H-COAL wastewater. These studies indicate that H-COAL Sour Water can be successfully treated for reuse or for discharge to public waters. Zimpro performed the first three studies on the biophysical treatment utilizing Powdered Activated Carbon Treatment (PACT). The PACT studies achieved the following results: Five-day biochemical oxygen demand (BOD/sub 5/) removal was > 98.8%; chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal was 85 to 87%; esentailly complete nitrification was achieved; phenolics removal was > 99%; priority pollutants were removed to levels below Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defined detection limits; PACT operated well using wet air regenerated carbon; and carbon recovery was approx. 90% in the wet air regeneration step. The third step in the Zimpro studies was a larger scale pilot investigation to: Confirm information developed in bench-scale experiments on a larger scale; provide performance data necessary to evaluate the PACTs Wet Air Regeneration System; optimize PACT operating conditions; produce treatment wastewater for additional testing; and perform a stress test at elevated concentrations of cyanide and thiocyanate. The results of the third Zimpro study are presented here.

  16. Some behavioral aspects of energy descent: how a biophysical psychology might help people transition through the lean times ahead.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Young, Raymond

    2014-01-01

    We may soon face biophysical limits to perpetual growth. Energy supplies may tighten and then begin a long slow descent while defensive expenditures rise to address problems caused by past resource consumption. The outcome may be significant changes in daily routines at the individual and community level. It is difficult to know when this scenario might begin to unfold but it clearly would constitute a new behavioral context, one that the behavioral sciences least attends to. Even if one posits a less dramatic scenario, people may still need to make many urgent and perhaps unsettling transitions. And while a robust response would be needed, it is not at all clear what should be the details of that response. Since it is likely that no single response will fix things everywhere, for all people or for all time, it would be useful to conduct many social experiments. Indeed, a culture of small experiments should be fostered which, at the individual and small group level, can be described as behavioral entrepreneurship. This may have begun, hidden in plain sight, but more social experiments are needed. To be of help, it may be useful to both package behavioral insights in a way that is practitioner-oriented and grounded in biophysical trends and to propose a few key questions that need attention. This paper begins the process of developing a biophysical psychology, incomplete as it is at this early stage. PMID:25404926

  17. Some behavioral aspects of energy descent: How a biophysical psychology might help people transition through the lean times ahead

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raymond eDe Young

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available We may soon face biophysical limits to perpetual growth. Energy supplies may tighten and then begin a long slow descent while defensive expenditures rise to address problems caused by past resource consumption. The outcome may be significant changes in daily routines at the individual and community level. It is difficult to know when this scenario might begin to unfold but it clearly would constitute a new behavioral context, one that the behavioral sciences least attends to. Even if one posits a less dramatic scenario, people may still need to make many urgent and perhaps unsettling transitions. And while a robust response would be needed, it is not at all clear what should be the details of that response. Since it is likely that no single response will fix things everywhere, for all people or for all time it would be useful to conduct many social experiments. Indeed, a culture of small experiments should be fostered which, at the individual and small group level, can be described as behavioral entrepreneurship. This may have begun, hidden in plain sight, but more social experiments are needed. To be of help, it may be useful to both package behavioral insights in a way that is practitioner-oriented and grounded in biophysical trends and to propose a few key questions that need attention. This paper begins the process of developing a biophysical psychology, incomplete as it is at this early stage.

  18. Planning for sustainable tourism in southern Pulau Banggi: an assessment of biophysical conditions and their implications for future tourism development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teh, Lydia; Cabanban, Annadel S

    2007-12-01

    A priori assessments of a site's biophysical and socio-economic capacity for accommodating tourism are less common than tourism impact studies. A priori evaluations can provide a contextual understanding of ecological, economic and socio-cultural forces, which shape the prospects for sustainable tourism development at the host destination, and can avert adverse impacts of tourism. We conduct an a priori assessment of the biophysical environment of Pulau Banggi, in the Malaysian state of Sabah for sustainable tourism development. We characterise baseline conditions of the island's marine biodiversity, seasonality, and infrastructure. We then evaluate how existing biophysical conditions will influence options for sustainable tourism development. In particular, we suggest conditions, if there are any, which constitute a limit to future tourism development in terms of compatibility for recreation and resilience to visitor impacts. We find that the biggest constraint is the lack of adequate water and sanitation infrastructure. Blast fishing, although occurring less than once per hour, can potentially destroy the major attraction for tourists. We conclude that while Pulau Banggi possesses natural qualities that are attractive for ecotourism, financial and institutional support must be made available to provide facilities and services that will enable local participation in environmental protection and enhance prospects for future sustainable tourism.

  19. Planning for sustainable tourism in southern Pulau Banggi: an assessment of biophysical conditions and their implications for future tourism development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teh, Lydia; Cabanban, Annadel S

    2007-12-01

    A priori assessments of a site's biophysical and socio-economic capacity for accommodating tourism are less common than tourism impact studies. A priori evaluations can provide a contextual understanding of ecological, economic and socio-cultural forces, which shape the prospects for sustainable tourism development at the host destination, and can avert adverse impacts of tourism. We conduct an a priori assessment of the biophysical environment of Pulau Banggi, in the Malaysian state of Sabah for sustainable tourism development. We characterise baseline conditions of the island's marine biodiversity, seasonality, and infrastructure. We then evaluate how existing biophysical conditions will influence options for sustainable tourism development. In particular, we suggest conditions, if there are any, which constitute a limit to future tourism development in terms of compatibility for recreation and resilience to visitor impacts. We find that the biggest constraint is the lack of adequate water and sanitation infrastructure. Blast fishing, although occurring less than once per hour, can potentially destroy the major attraction for tourists. We conclude that while Pulau Banggi possesses natural qualities that are attractive for ecotourism, financial and institutional support must be made available to provide facilities and services that will enable local participation in environmental protection and enhance prospects for future sustainable tourism. PMID:17204361

  20. Unveiling soil degradation and desertification risk in the Mediterranean basin: a data mining analysis of the relationships between biophysical and socioeconomic factors in agro-forest landscapes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Salvati, L.; Kosmas, C.; Kairis, O.; Karavitis, C.; Hessel, R.; Ritsema, C.J.

    2015-01-01

    Soil degradation and desertification processes in the Mediterranean basin reflect the interplay between environmental and socioeconomic drivers. An approach to evaluate comparatively the multiple relationships between biophysical variables and socioeconomic factors is illustrated in the present stud

  1. QTL for shelf life in lettuce co-locate with those for leaf biophysical properties but not for leaf developmental traits

    OpenAIRE

    Zhang, Fang Z.; Wagstaff, Carol; Rae, Anne M; Sihota, Arinder K.; Keevil, C. William; Rothwell, Steve D.; Clarkson, Graham J. J.; Michelmore, Richard W; Truco, Maria Jose; Dixon, Mark S.; Taylor, Gail

    2007-01-01

    Developmental and biophysical leaf characteristics that influence post-harvest shelf life in lettuce, an important leafy crop, have been examined. The traits were studied using 60 informative F9 recombinant inbreed lines (RILs) derived from a cross between cultivated lettuce (Lactuca sativa cv. Salinas) and wild lettuce (L. serriola acc. UC96US23). Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) for shelf life co-located most closely with those for leaf biophysical properties such as plasticity, elasticity and...

  2. Program Review Challenges and Opportunities for Training the Next Generation of Biophysicists: Perspectives of the Directors of the Molecular Biophysics Training Program at Northwestern University

    OpenAIRE

    Neuhaus, Francis; Widom, Jonathan; MacDonald, Robert; Jardetzky, Theodore; Radhakrishnan, Ishwar

    2008-01-01

    Molecular biophysics is a broad, diverse, and dynamic field that has presented a variety of unique challenges and opportunities for training future generations of investigators. Having been or currently being intimately associated with the Molecular Biophysics Training Program at Northwestern, we present our perspectives on various issues that we have encountered over the years. We propose no cookie-cutter solutions, as there is no consensus on what constitutes the “ideal” program. However, t...

  3. Aircraft Fire Protection Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Navy Aircraft Protection Laboratory provides complete test support for all Navy air vehicle fire protection systems. The facility allows for the simulation of a...

  4. Energetics Laboratory Facilities

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — These energetic materials laboratories are equipped with explosion proof hoods with blow out walls for added safety, that are certified for safe handling of primary...

  5. Laboratory of Biological Modeling

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Laboratory of Biological Modeling is defined by both its methodologies and its areas of application. We use mathematical modeling in many forms and apply it to...

  6. Laboratory Demographics Lookup Tool

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — This website provides demographic information about laboratories, including CLIA number, facility name and address, where the laboratory testing is performed, the...

  7. Building the Korogwe Laboratory

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Knudsen, Jakob; von Seidlein, Lorenz; Richard, Jean Pierre

    2011-01-01

    An illustrated description of the building of a biomedical research laboratory in Korogwe, Tanzania.......An illustrated description of the building of a biomedical research laboratory in Korogwe, Tanzania....

  8. Geological Services Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Researchers use computed tomography (CT) scanners at NETL’s Geological Services Laboratory in Morgantown, WV, to peer into geologic core samples to determine how...

  9. Clinical Laboratory Fee Schedule

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — Outpatient clinical laboratory services are paid based on a fee schedule in accordance with Section 1833(h) of the Social Security Act. The clinical laboratory fee...

  10. Electro-Deposition Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The electro-deposition laboratory can electro-deposit various coatings onto small test samples and bench level prototypes. This facility provides the foundation for...

  11. Protective Systems Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — This laboratory is a 40 by 28 by 9 foot facility that is equipped with tools for the development of various items of control technology related to the transmission...

  12. Moriah Wind System Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Purpose: The Moriah Wind System Laboratory provides in-service support for the more than 50 U.S. Navy, U.S. Coast Guard and Military Sealift Command ships on which...

  13. Aquatic Research Laboratory (ARL)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Columbia River and groundwater well water sources are delivered to the Aquatic Research Laboratory (ARL), where these resources are used to conduct research on fish...

  14. FLEXIBLE FOOD PACKAGING LABORATORY

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — This laboratory contains equipment to fabricate and test prototype packages of many types and sizes (e.g., bags, pouches, trays, cartons, etc.). This equipment can...

  15. Mechanical Testing Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — NETL’s Mechanical Testing Laboratory in Albany, OR, helps researchers investigate materials that can withstand the heat and pressure commonly found in fossil energy...

  16. High Bay Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — This laboratory is a specially constructed facility with elevated (37 feet) ceilings and an overhead catwalk, and which is dedicated to research efforts in reducing...

  17. Space Systems Laboratory (SSL)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Space Systems Laboratory (SSL) is part of the Aerospace Engineering Department and A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland in College...

  18. Land Surface Biophysical-Climate Impacts of Tropical Deforestation with Time-dependence: Sensitivity to Deforestation Rates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo, C. G.; Gurney, K. R.

    2010-12-01

    Deforestation perturbs both biophysical and carbon feedbacks on climate. However, biophysical feedbacks operate at more temporally-immediate and spatially-focused scales, and thus may be sensitive to the actual rate at which deforestation occurs rather than just to the total forest cover loss. Most of previous modeling experiments have focused on equilibrium impacts of mass instantaneous replacement of trees; but, anthropogenic deforestation evolves in time and may result in transient climatic changes which holistic assessments of land cover change impacts must be able to characterize for mitigation and adaptation initiatives to be effective. This exploratory work therefore attempts to determine if there exists a time-dependence within biophysical-climate impacts of deforestation; specifically, if indeed the rates of deforestation affect terrestrial biophysics-climate feedbacks during the period of active deforestation as well as the post-deforestation period. Described here is a method for simulating annual tropical deforestation in the fully-coupled Community Climate System Model 3.0 (CCSM3) with the Dynamic Global Vegetation Model (DGVM) for testing biosphere-climate sensitivity to “preservation pathways.” We test two deforestation curves- one with a 10% annual tree population thinning (DFC10-PT10), and one with 1% (DFC1-PT10) - each with a preservation target of 10% tree cover. During the period of active deforestation, surface albedo, net radiation, latent heat flux and climate variables are compared for time-dependence and sensitivity to total tropical tree foliar projective cover across the tropical band, the Amazon Basin, Central Africa and Southeast Asia. The deforestation rates produce characteristic trends in biophysical variables with DFC10-PT10 resulting in rapid increase/decrease during the initial 10-30 years before a slow leveling off, while DFC1-PT10 exhibits more gradual changes. The deforestation rate is also found to have little effect on

  19. A biophysical model of endocannabinoid-mediated short term depression in hippocampal inhibition.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Margarita Zachariou

    Full Text Available Memories are believed to be represented in the synaptic pathways of vastly interconnected networks of neurons. The plasticity of synapses, that is, their strengthening and weakening depending on neuronal activity, is believed to be the basis of learning and establishing memories. An increasing number of studies indicate that endocannabinoids have a widespread action on brain function through modulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity. Recent experimental studies have characterised the role of endocannabinoids in mediating both short- and long-term synaptic plasticity in various brain regions including the hippocampus, a brain region strongly associated with cognitive functions, such as learning and memory. Here, we present a biophysically plausible model of cannabinoid retrograde signalling at the synaptic level and investigate how this signalling mediates depolarisation induced suppression of inhibition (DSI, a prominent form of short-term synaptic depression in inhibitory transmission in hippocampus. The model successfully captures many of the key characteristics of DSI in the hippocampus, as observed experimentally, with a minimal yet sufficient mathematical description of the major signalling molecules and cascades involved. More specifically, this model serves as a framework to test hypotheses on the factors determining the variability of DSI and investigate under which conditions it can be evoked. The model reveals the frequency and duration bands in which the post-synaptic cell can be sufficiently stimulated to elicit DSI. Moreover, the model provides key insights on how the state of the inhibitory cell modulates DSI according to its firing rate and relative timing to the post-synaptic activation. Thus, it provides concrete suggestions to further investigate experimentally how DSI modulates and is modulated by neuronal activity in the brain. Importantly, this model serves as a stepping stone for future deciphering of the role of

  20. Cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator chloride channel blockers: Pharmacological, biophysical and physiological relevance

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Paul; Linsdell

    2014-01-01

    Dysfunction of the cystic fibrosis transmembrane con-ductance regulator(CFTR) chloride channel causes cys-tic fibrosis, while inappropriate activity of this channeloccurs in secretory diarrhea and polycystic kidney dis-ease. Drugs that interact directly with CFTR are there-fore of interest in the treatment of a number of diseasestates. This review focuses on one class of small mol-ecules that interacts directly with CFTR, namely inhibi-tors that act by directly blocking chloride movementthrough the open channel pore. In theory such com-pounds could be of use in the treatment of diarrheaand polycystic kidney disease, however in practice allknown substances acting by this mechanism to inhibitCFTR function lack either the potency or specificity forin vivo use. Nevertheless, this theoretical pharmaco-logical usefulness set the scene for the developmentof more potent, specific CFTR inhibitors. Biophysically,open channel blockers have proven most useful as ex-perimental probes of the structure and function of theCFTR chloride channel pore. Most importantly, the useof these blockers has been fundamental in developing afunctional model of the pore that includes a wide innervestibule that uses positively charged amino acid sidechains to attract both permeant and blocking anionsfrom the cell cytoplasm. CFTR channels are also subjectto this kind of blocking action by endogenous anionspresent in the cell cytoplasm, and recently this blocking effect has been suggested to play a role in the physio-logical control of CFTR channel function, in particular as a novel mechanism linking CFTR function dynamically to the composition of epithelial cell secretions. It has also been suggested that future drugs could target this same pathway as a way of pharmacologically increasing CFTR activity in cystic fibrosis. Studying open channel blockers and their mechanisms of action has resulted in significant advances in our understanding of CFTR as a pharmacological target in disease states, of

  1. Estimating maize grain yield from crop biophysical parameters using remote sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guindin-Garcia, Noemi

    The overall objective of this investigation was to develop a robust technique to predict maize (Zea mays L.) grain yield that could be applied at a regional level using remote sensing with or without a simple crop growth simulation model. This study evaluated capabilities and limitations of the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Vegetation Index 250-m and MODIS surface reflectance 500-m products to track and retrieve information over maize fields. Results demonstrated the feasibility of using MODIS data to estimate maize green leaf area index (LAIg). Estimates of maize LAIg obtained from Wide Dynamic Range Vegetation Index using data retrieved from MODIS 250-m products (e.g. MOD13Q1) can be incorporated in crop simulation models to improve LAIg simulations by the Muchow-Sinclair-Bennet (MSB) model reducing the RMSE of LAIg simulations for all years of study under irrigation. However, more accurate estimates of LAIg did not necessarily imply better final yield (FY) predictions in the MSB maize model. The approach of incorporating better LAIg estimates into crop simulation models may not offer a panacea for problem solving; this approach is limited in its ability to simulate other factors influencing crop yields. On the other hand, the approach of relating key crop biophysical parameters at the optimum stage with maize grain final yields is a robust technique to early FY estimation over large areas. Results suggest that estimates of LAI g obtained during the mid-grain filling period can used to detect variability of maize grain yield and this technique offers a rapid and accurate (RMSE products.

  2. Interaction of biocompatible natural rosin-based surfactants with human serum albumin: A biophysical study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Biophysical insight into interaction of biocompatible rosin-based surfactants with human serum albumin (HSA) was studied at physiological conditions using various spectroscopic, calorimetric and molecular docking approaches. The binding constant (Kb), enthalpy (ΔH0), entropy (ΔS0) and Gibbs free energy change (ΔG0) were calculated by spectroscopic and calorimetric method. We have also calculated the probability of energy transfer by FRET analysis. The circular dichroism study showed that the cationic surfactant QRMAE significantly altered the secondary structure of HSA as compared to the nonionic rosin surfactants. The thermodynamic study was performed by ITC to determine binding constant as well as change in enthalpy of HSA in presence of rosin surfactants. It clearly showed that hydrogen binding and hydrophobic interaction play an important role in the binding of HSA to rosin surfactants. We have also performed molecular docking studies to locate the binding site on HSA and to visualize the mode of interaction. The present study provides a significant insight into HSA–rosin surfactants interaction, which also improves our understanding of the possible effect of rosin surfactants on human health. - Highlights: • RMPEG 750 has the highest Kb, Kq and Ksv value as compared to other rosin surfactants. • The probability of energy transfer from HSA to rosin surfactants was maximum in the case of RMPEG 750. • Cationic surfactant QRMAE significantly altered the secondary structure of the HSA as compared to other rosin surfactants. • Molecular docking and ITC experiment studies, to locate the binding site on HSA and to investigate the mode of interaction

  3. The role of biophysical interactions within the ijzermonding tidal flat sediment dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Backer, Annelies; Van Colen, Carl; Vincx, Magda; Degraer, Steven

    2010-05-01

    This paper focuses on the importance of biophysical interactions on short-term and long-term sediment dynamics. Therefore, various biological (macrobenthos, photopigments, colloidal EPS) and physical parameters (grain size, water content, sediment stability, bed level) were determined (bi)monthly in nine sampling plots on the IJzermonding tidal flat (Belgium, 51°08'N, 2°44'E) during three consecutive years (July 2005-June 2008). Results showed that sediment stability varied on the short timescale and was directly influenced by biota, while bed level varied mainly on the long-term due to interannual variability. The short-term dynamic relationships between mud content, water content, fucoxanthin and macrobenthos density resulted in a seasonal mud deposition and erosion cycle, and directly influenced sediment stability. Moreover, macrobenthos was proven to be the most important parameter determining sediment stability. On the long-term, a shift was observed from high fucoxanthin/chl a concentration, high mud content and zero to moderate densities of Corophium volutator towards low fucoxanthin/chl a and mud content and high Corophium densities, which resulted in a transition from net accretion to net erosion. However, most measured variables proved to be poor predictors for these long-term bed level changes, indicating that external physical forces, such as waves and storminess, probably were the most important factors triggering long-term sediment dynamics. Nevertheless, biota indirectly influenced bed level changes by mediating short-term changes in sediment stability, thereby influencing the erodability of the sediment. The macrobenthos, and especially the mud shrimp Corophium, was suggested as the (indirect) driving destabilising factor for the sampling plots in the IIzermonding when considering the long-term evolution.

  4. Design considerations for micro- and nanopositioning: leveraging the latest for biophysical applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordan, S C; Anthony, P C

    2009-08-01

    Biophysical applications ranging from fluorescence microassays to single-molecule microscopy are increasingly dependent on automated nanoscale positional control and stability. A whirlwind of motion-industry innovation has resulted in an array of new motion options offering significant improvements in application performance, reproducibility and throughput. The challenge to leverage these developments depends on researchers, engineers and motion vendors acquiring a common language of specifications and a shared understanding of the challenges posed by application needs. To assist in building this shared understanding, this article reviews today's motion technologies, beginning with a concise review of key principles of motion control focusing on applications. It progresses through illustrations of sensor/encoder technologies and servo techniques. A spectrum of classical and recent motion technologies is explored, from stepper and servo actuation of conventional microscopy stages, to advanced piezo stack nanopositioners capable of picometer precision, to novel ultrasonic resonant piezomotors and piezo-ceramic-based mechanisms capable of high-force positioning over many millimeters while providing resolutions down into the sub-nanometer range. A special emphasis is placed on the effects of integrating multiple motion technologies into an application, such as stacking a fine nanopositioner atop a long-travel stage. Examples and data are presented to clarify these issues, including important and insightful new stability measurements taken directly from an advanced optical trapping application. The important topics of software and interfacing are also explored from an applications perspective, since design-and-debugging time, synchronization capabilities and overall throughput are heavily dependent on these often-overlooked aspects of motion system design. The discussion is designed to illuminate specifications-related topics that become increasingly important as

  5. Lessons from the biophysics of interfaces: lung surfactant and tear fluid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rantamäki, Antti H; Telenius, Jelena; Koivuniemi, Artturi; Vattulainen, Ilpo; Holopainen, Juha M

    2011-05-01

    The purpose of this review is to provide insight into the biophysical properties and functions of tear fluid and lung surfactant--two similar fluids covering the epithelium of two distinctive organs. Both fluids form a layer-like structure that essentially comprise of an aqueous layer next to the epithelium and an anterior lipid layer at the air-water interface. The aqueous layers contain soluble proteins and metabolites, and they are responsible for the host defence system and nutrition of the organ. However, many proteins also interact with the lipid layer and are important for the surface-active function of the fluid film. The lipid layer of lung surfactant comprises mainly of phospholipids, especially phosphatidylcholines, and only small amounts of non-polar lipids, mainly cholesterol. In contrast, tear fluid lipid layer comprises of a mixture of polar and non-polar lipids. However, the relative proportion and the spectrum of different polar and non-polar lipids seem to be more extensive in tear fluid than in lung surfactant. The differing lipid compositions generate distinctive lipid layer structures. Despite the structural differences, these lipid layers decrease the surface tension of the air-water interface. The structure of the tear film lipid layer also minimises the evaporation of the tear fluid. In lung surfactant surface activity is crucial for the function of the organ, as the lipid layer prevents the collapse of the lung alveoli during the compression-expansion cycle of breathing. Similarly the tear film experiences a compression-expansion cycle during blinking. The dynamics of this cycle have been studied to a lesser extent and are not as clear as those of lung surfactant. The common structure and properties suggest a similar behaviour under rapid compression-expansion for both fluids. PMID:21352946

  6. Theoretical Insights into the Biophysics of Protein Bi-stability and Evolutionary Switches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sikosek, Tobias; Krobath, Heinrich; Chan, Hue Sun

    2016-06-01

    Deciphering the effects of nonsynonymous mutations on protein structure is central to many areas of biomedical research and is of fundamental importance to the study of molecular evolution. Much of the investigation of protein evolution has focused on mutations that leave a protein's folded structure essentially unchanged. However, to evolve novel folds of proteins, mutations that lead to large conformational modifications have to be involved. Unraveling the basic biophysics of such mutations is a challenge to theory, especially when only one or two amino acid substitutions cause a large-scale conformational switch. Among the few such mutational switches identified experimentally, the one between the GA all-α and GB α+β folds is extensively characterized; but all-atom simulations using fully transferrable potentials have not been able to account for this striking switching behavior. Here we introduce an explicit-chain model that combines structure-based native biases for multiple alternative structures with a general physical atomic force field, and apply this construct to twelve mutants spanning the sequence variation between GA and GB. In agreement with experiment, we observe conformational switching from GA to GB upon a single L45Y substitution in the GA98 mutant. In line with the latent evolutionary potential concept, our model shows a gradual sequence-dependent change in fold preference in the mutants before this switch. Our analysis also indicates that a sharp GA/GB switch may arise from the orientation dependence of aromatic π-interactions. These findings provide physical insights toward rationalizing, predicting and designing evolutionary conformational switches. PMID:27253392

  7. Biophysical characterization and mutational analysis of the antibiotic resistance protein NimA from Deinococcus radiodurans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leiros, Hanna-Kirsti S; Brandsdal, Bjørn Olav; McSweeney, Seán M

    2010-04-01

    Metronidazole (MTZ) is an antibiotic commonly used to treat anaerobic bacterial infections in humans and animals. Antibiotic resistance toward this class of 5-nitroimidazole (5-Ni) drug derivatives has been related to the Nim genes thought to encode a reductase. Here we report the biophysical characteristics of the NimA protein from Deinococcus radiodurans (DrNimA) binding to MTZ and three other 5-Ni drugs. The interaction energies of the protein and antibiotic are studied by isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) and with free energy and linear interaction energy (LIE) calculations, where the latter method revealed that the antibiotic binding is mainly of hydrophobic character. ITC measurements further found that one DrNimA dimer has two antibiotic binding sites which were not affected by mutation of the reactive His71. The observed association constants (K(a)) were in the range of 5.1-4910(4)M(-1) and the enthalpy release upon binding to DrNimA for the four drugs studied was relatively low (approximately -1 kJ/mol) but still measurable. The drug binding is mainly entropy driven and along with the hydrophobic drug binding site found by crystallography, this possibly explains the low observed enthalpy values. The effect of the His71 mutation and the presence of MTZ were studied by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). Native DrNimA is a yellow colored protein where the interaction from His71 to the cofactor is thought to be responsible for the coloring. Mutations of His71 to Ala, Ser, Leu or Asp all gave transparent, colorless protein solutions, and the two mutant crystal structures of DrNimA-H71A and DrNimA-H71S presented revealed no cofactor binding.

  8. Specificity and affinity of phenosafranine protein adduct: Insights from biophysical aspects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ding Fei [Department of Chemistry, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China); Department of Biological Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139 (United States); Zhang Li; Sun Ye [Department of Chemistry, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China); Diao Jianxiong [College of Resources and Environmental Sciences, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China); Yang Xinling [Department of Chemistry, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China); Sun Ying, E-mail: sunying@cau.edu.cn [College of Resources and Environmental Sciences, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China); Zhang Li, E-mail: zhli.work@gmail.com [Key Laboratory of Pesticide Chemistry and Application Technology, Ministry of Agriculture, Department of Applied Chemistry, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193 (China)

    2012-03-15

    Phenosafranine is a toxic and recalcitrant compound, whose capacity to intercalate with double stranded DNA has been shown. In this contribution, a biophysical discuss on the conjugation of phenosafranine with two model proteins human serum albumin (HSA) and lysozyme (Lys) has been identified utilizing a combination of molecular modeling, steady state and time-resolved fluorescence and circular dichroism (CD) approaches. The accurate binding domain of phenosafranine in protein has been characterized from molecular modeling, subdomain IIIA of HSA and Trp-62, Trp-63 and Trp-108 residues of Lys was designated to possess high-affinity for this compound, the dominant forces in the protein-phenosafranine adduct are hydrogen bonds and {pi}-{pi} interactions, but hydrophobic interactions between dye and Lys are also not exclude. The data of fluorescence displayed that the complex of phenosafranine with protein produces quenching through static property, this corroborates the time-resolved fluorescence results that the ground state complex formation with a moderate affinity of 10{sup 4} M{sup -1}. Moreover, via synchronous fluorescence, CD and three-dimensional fluorescence we indicated some extent of polypeptide chain of protein partially unfolding upon conjugation with phenosafranine. Through this work, we anticipate it can supply salient clues on the toxicological action of phenosafranine and other azines, which have analogous configuration with phenosafranine. - Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Our study supply salient clues on the toxicological action of toxic phenosafranine. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Phenosafranine is situated within subdomain IIIA, Sudlow's site II on HSA. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Trp-62, Trp-63 and Trp-108 residues on the Lys molecule are all close to dye. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Static property of the phenosafranine induced quenching of protein Trp fluorescence. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Protein spatial structure proved

  9. Interaction of biocompatible natural rosin-based surfactants with human serum albumin: A biophysical study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ishtikhar, Mohd [Protein Biophysics Laboratory, Interdisciplinary Biotechnology Unit, Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh 202002 (India); Ali, Mohd Sajid [Surfactant Research Chair, Department of Chemistry, King Saud University, P.O. Box-2455, Riyadh 11451 (Saudi Arabia); Atta, Ayman M. [Surfactant Research Chair, Department of Chemistry, King Saud University, P.O. Box-2455, Riyadh 11451 (Saudi Arabia); Petroleum Application department, Egyptian Petroleum Research Institute, Ahmad Elzomor St., Nasr city, Cairo-11727 (Egypt); Al-Lohedan, H.A. [Surfactant Research Chair, Department of Chemistry, King Saud University, P.O. Box-2455, Riyadh 11451 (Saudi Arabia); Nigam, Lokesh; Subbarao, Naidu [Centre for Computational Biology and Bioinformatics, School of Computational and Integrative Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi 110067 (India); Hasan Khan, Rizwan, E-mail: rizwanhkhan@hotmail.com [Protein Biophysics Laboratory, Interdisciplinary Biotechnology Unit, Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh 202002 (India)

    2015-11-15

    Biophysical insight into interaction of biocompatible rosin-based surfactants with human serum albumin (HSA) was studied at physiological conditions using various spectroscopic, calorimetric and molecular docking approaches. The binding constant (K{sub b}), enthalpy (ΔH{sup 0}), entropy (ΔS{sup 0}) and Gibbs free energy change (ΔG{sup 0}) were calculated by spectroscopic and calorimetric method. We have also calculated the probability of energy transfer by FRET analysis. The circular dichroism study showed that the cationic surfactant QRMAE significantly altered the secondary structure of HSA as compared to the nonionic rosin surfactants. The thermodynamic study was performed by ITC to determine binding constant as well as change in enthalpy of HSA in presence of rosin surfactants. It clearly showed that hydrogen binding and hydrophobic interaction play an important role in the binding of HSA to rosin surfactants. We have also performed molecular docking studies to locate the binding site on HSA and to visualize the mode of interaction. The present study provides a significant insight into HSA–rosin surfactants interaction, which also improves our understanding of the possible effect of rosin surfactants on human health. - Highlights: • RMPEG 750 has the highest Kb, Kq and Ksv value as compared to other rosin surfactants. • The probability of energy transfer from HSA to rosin surfactants was maximum in the case of RMPEG 750. • Cationic surfactant QRMAE significantly altered the secondary structure of the HSA as compared to other rosin surfactants. • Molecular docking and ITC experiment studies, to locate the binding site on HSA and to investigate the mode of interaction.

  10. Biophysical properties of photoreceptors in Corixa punctata facilitate diurnal life-style.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frolov, Roman V

    2015-06-01

    Measurement of evolutionary adaptations of a visual system to its visual and operational ecology requires comparison of visual function in different species with similar morphologies and visual ecologies, occupying the same habitats but displaying differences in visually-guided behavior. The goal here was to document the biophysical properties of photoreceptors in the lesser water boatman Corixa punctata, which shares many features with the previously studied aquatic predator water boatman backswimmer Notonecta glauca. However, unlike the backswimmer, which heavily relies on vision to catch its prey, Corixa is a detritivore. Using the patch-clamp method, I found that the average whole-cell capacitance of Corixa photoreceptors was 441±206 pF, higher than in any other insect studied so far, and that absolute sensitivity was positively correlated with capacitance (Spearman rank correlation coefficient, 0.73). Interestingly, both the sensitivity distribution median and variation in Corixa were similar to the corresponding values in the diurnal water strider Gerris lacustris and were substantially smaller than in the noctidial N. glauca or the nocturnal/crepuscular cockroach Periplaneta americana. Furthermore, capacitance was correlated with the amplitudes of light-induced (0.70) and delayed rectifier K(+) (0.46) currents, membrane corner frequency (0.68) and maximal information rate (IRmax, 0.74). No correlation was observed between capacitance and transient K(+) current. Average IRmax in Corixa was 36.0±21.3 bits s(-1), much higher than in G. lacustris but smaller than in N. glauca. These findings support the hypothesis that Corixa's retinal function is adapted to its diurnal life-style, which is also consistent with field observations.

  11. Biophysical Characterization and Activity of Lymphostatin, a Multifunctional Virulence Factor of Attaching and Effacing Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassady-Cain, Robin L; Blackburn, Elizabeth A; Alsarraf, Husam; Dedic, Emil; Bease, Andrew G; Böttcher, Bettina; Jørgensen, René; Wear, Martin; Stevens, Mark P

    2016-03-11

    Attaching and effacing Escherichia coli cause diarrhea and typically produce lymphostatin (LifA), an inhibitor of mitogen-activated proliferation of lymphocytes and pro-inflammatory cytokine synthesis. A near-identical factor (Efa1) has been reported to mediate adherence of E. coli to epithelial cells. An amino-terminal region of LifA shares homology with the catalytic domain of the large clostridial toxins, which are retaining glycosyltransferases with a DXD motif involved in binding of a metal ion. Understanding the mode(s) of action of lymphostatin has been constrained by difficulties obtaining a stably transformed plasmid expression clone. We constructed a tightly inducible clone of enteropathogenic E. coli O127:H6 lifA for affinity purification of lymphostatin. The purified protein inhibited mitogen-activated proliferation of bovine T lymphocytes in the femtomolar range. It is a monomer in solution and the molecular envelope was determined using both transmission electron microscopy and small-angle x-ray scattering. Domain architecture was further studied by limited proteolysis. The largest proteolytic fragment containing the putative glycosyltransferase domain was tested in isolation for activity against T cells, and was not sufficient for activity. Tryptophan fluorescence studies indicated thatlymphostatin binds uridine diphosphate-N-acetylglucosamine (UDP-GlcNAc) but not UDP-glucose (UDP-Glc). Substitution of the predicted DXD glycosyltransferase motif with alanine residues abolished UDP-GlcNAc binding and lymphostatin activity, although other biophysical properties were unchanged. The data indicate that lymphostatin has UDP-sugar binding potential that is critical for activity, and is a major leap toward identifying the nature and consequences of modifications of host cell factors.

  12. Human and biophysical influences on fire occurrence in the United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawbaker, Todd J; Radeloff, Volker C; Stewart, Susan I; Hammer, Roger B; Keuler, Nicholas S; Clayton, Murray K

    2013-04-01

    National-scale analyses of fire occurrence are needed to prioritize fire policy and management activities across the United States. However, the drivers of national-scale patterns of fire occurrence are not well understood, and how the relative importance of human or biophysical factors varies across the country is unclear. Our research goal was to model the drivers of fire occurrence within ecoregions across the conterminous United States. We used generalized linear models to compare the relative influence of human, vegetation, climate, and topographic variables on fire occurrence in the United States, as measured by MODIS active fire detections collected between 2000 and 2006. We constructed models for all fires and for large fires only and generated predictive maps to quantify fire occurrence probabilities. Areas with high fire occurrence probabilities were widespread in the Southeast, and localized in the Mountain West, particularly in southern California, Arizona, and New Mexico. Probabilities for large-fire occurrence were generally lower, but hot spots existed in the western and south-central United States The probability of fire occurrence is a critical component of fire risk assessments, in addition to vegetation type, fire behavior, and the values at risk. Many of the hot spots we identified have extensive development in the wildland--urban interface and are near large metropolitan areas. Our results demonstrated that human variables were important predictors of both all fires and large fires and frequently exhibited nonlinear relationships. However, vegetation, climate, and topography were also significant variables in most ecoregions. If recent housing growth trends and fire occurrence patterns continue, these areas will continue to challenge policies and management efforts seeking to balance the risks generated by wildfires with the ecological benefits of fire. PMID:23734486

  13. Thermal Imaging of Forest Canopy Temperatures: Relationships with Biological and Biophysical Drivers and Ecosystem Fluxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Still, C. J.; Kim, Y.; Hanson, C. V.; Law, B. E.; Kwon, H.; Schulze, M.; Pau, S.; Detto, M.

    2015-12-01

    Temperature is a primary environmental control on plant processes at a range of spatial and temporal scales, affecting enzymatic reactions, ecosystem biogeochemistry, and species distributions. Although most focus is on air temperature, the radiative or skin temperature of plants is more relevant. Canopy skin temperature dynamics reflect biophysical, physiological, and anatomical characteristics and interactions with environmental drivers, and can be used to examine forest responses to stresses like droughts and heat waves. Direct measurements of plant canopy temperatures using thermocouple sensors have been challenging and offer limited information. Such measurements are usually conducted over short periods of time and a limited spatial extent of the canopy. By contrast, thermal infrared (TIR) imaging allows for extensive temporal and spatial measurement of canopy temperature regimes. We present results of TIR imaging of forest canopies at a range of well-studied forest sites in the United States and Panama. These forest types include temperate rainforests, a semi­arid pine forest, and a semi­deciduous tropical forest. Canopy temperature regimes at these sites are highly variable spatially and temporally and display frequent departures from air temperature, particularly during clear sky conditions. Canopy tissue temperatures are often warmer (daytime) and colder (nighttime) than air temperature, and canopy structure seems to have a large influence on the thermal regime. Additionally, comparison of canopy temperatures to eddy covariance fluxes of carbon dioxide, water vapor, and energy reveals relationships not apparent using air temperature. Initial comparisons between our forest canopy temperatures and remotely sensed skin temperature using Landsat and MODIS data show reasonably good agreement. We conclude that temporal and spatial changes in canopy temperature and its relationship to biological and environmental factors can improve our understanding of how

  14. Association, intrinsic shape, and molecular recognition: Elucidating DNA biophysics through coarse-grained simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freeman, Gordon Samuel

    DNA is of central importance in biology as it is responsible for carrying, copying, and translating the genetic code into the building blocks that comprise life. In order to accomplish these tasks, the DNA molecule must be versatile and robust. Indeed, the underlying molecular interactions that allow DNA to execute these tasks are complex and their origins are only beginning to be understood. While experiments are able to elucidate many key biophysical phenomena, there remain many unanswered questions. Molecular simulation is able to shed light on phenomena at the molecular scale and provide information that is missing from experimental views of DNA behavior. In this dissertation I use state-of-the-art coarse-grained DNA models to address two key problems. In the first, metadynamics calculations are employed to uncover the free energy surface of two complimentary DNA strands. This free energy surface takes on the appearance of a hybridization funnel and reveals candidates for intermediate states in the hybridization of short DNA oligomers. Such short oligomers are important building blocks for DNA-driven self-assembly and the mechanism of hybridization in this regime is not well understood. The second problem is that of nucleosome formation. Nucleosomes are the fundamental subunit of genome compaction in the nucleus of a cell. As such, nucleosomes are a key epigenetic factor and affect gene expression and the ability of DNA-binding proteins to locate and bind to the appropriate position in the genome. However, the factors that drive nucleosome positioning are not well understood. While DNA sequence is known to affect nucleosome formation, the mechanism by which it does so has not been established and a number of hypotheses explaining this sequence-dependence exist in the literature. I demonstrate that DNA shape dominates this process with contributions arising from both intrinsic DNA curvature as well as DNA-protein interactions driven by sequence

  15. Human and biophysical drivers of fires in Semiarid Chaco mountains of Central Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Argañaraz, Juan P; Gavier Pizarro, Gregorio; Zak, Marcelo; Landi, Marcos A; Bellis, Laura M

    2015-07-01

    Fires are a recurrent disturbance in Semiarid Chaco mountains of central Argentina. The interaction of multiple factors generates variable patterns of fire occurrence in space and time. Understanding the dominant fire drivers at different spatial scales is a fundamental goal to minimize the negative impacts of fires. Our aim was to identify the biophysical and human drivers of fires in the Semiarid Chaco mountains of Central Argentina and their individual effects on fire activity, in order to determine the thresholds and/or ranges of the drivers at which fire occurrence is favored or disfavored. We used fire frequency as the response variable and a set of 28 potential predictor variables, which included climatic, human, topographic, biological and hydrological factors. Data were analyzed using Boosted Regression Trees, using data from near 10,500 sampling points. Our model identified the fire drivers accurately (75.6% of deviance explained). Although humans are responsible for most ignitions, climatic variables, such as annual precipitation, annual potential evapotranspiration and temperature seasonality were the most important determiners of fire frequency, followed by human (population density and distance to waste disposals) and biological (NDVI) predictors. In general, fire activity was higher at intermediate levels of precipitation and primary productivity and in the proximity of urban solid waste disposals. Fires were also more prone to occur in areas with greater variability in temperature and productivity. Boosted Regression Trees proved to be a useful and accurate tool to determine fire controls and the ranges at which drivers favor fire activity. Our approach provides a valuable insight into the ecology of fires in our study area and in other landscapes with similar characteristics, and the results will be helpful to develop management policies and predict changes in fire activity in response to different climate changes and development scenarios. PMID

  16. Biophysical basis of the binding of WWOX tumor suppressor to WBP1 and WBP2 adaptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, Caleb B; Buffa, Laura; Bar-Mag, Tomer; Salah, Zaidoun; Bhat, Vikas; Mikles, David C; Deegan, Brian J; Seldeen, Kenneth L; Malhotra, Arun; Sudol, Marius; Aqeilan, Rami I; Nawaz, Zafar; Farooq, Amjad

    2012-09-01

    The WW-containing oxidoreductase (WWOX) tumor suppressor participates in a diverse array of cellular activities by virtue of its ability to recognize WW-binding protein 1 (WBP1) and WW-binding protein 2 (WBP2) signaling adaptors among a wide variety of other ligands. Herein, using a multitude of biophysical techniques, we provide evidence that while the WW1 domain of WWOX binds to PPXY motifs within WBP1 and WBP2 in a physiologically relevant manner, the WW2 domain exhibits no affinity toward any of these PPXY motifs. Importantly, our data suggest that while R25/W44 residues located within the binding pocket of a triple-stranded β-fold of WW1 domain are critical for the recognition of PPXY ligands, they are replaced by the chemically distinct E66/Y85 duo at structurally equivalent positions within the WW2 domain, thereby accounting for its failure to bind PPXY ligands. Predictably, not only does the introduction of E66R/Y85W double substitution within the WW2 domain result in gain of function but the resulting engineered domain, hereinafter referred to as WW2_RW, also appears to be a much stronger binding partner of WBP1 and WBP2 than the wild-type WW1 domain. We also show that while the WW1 domain is structurally disordered and folds upon ligand binding, the WW2 domain not only adopts a fully structured conformation but also aids stabilization and ligand binding to WW1 domain. This salient observation implies that the WW2 domain likely serves as a chaperone to augment the physiological function of WW1 domain within WWOX. Collectively, our study lays the groundwork for understanding the molecular basis of a key protein-protein interaction pertinent to human health and disease. PMID:22634283

  17. Irrigation Management with Remote Sensing Techniques. Crop Water Requirements and Biophysical Indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toureiro, Célia; Serralheiro, Ricardo

    2013-04-01

    Saving water in irrigated agriculture is increasingly relevant, as the irrigation sector is in many regions the biggest water consumer, but must be a sustainable activity. Therefore, the need urges for water use control methods and water resources planning. In irrigated agriculture, the right way for saving water is constituted by the increase of efficiency in water management. This work validates procedures and methodologies with remote sensing to determine the water availability in the soil at each moment and therefore the opportunity for the application of the water volume strictly necessary to optimize crop growth (irrigation opportunity and irrigation amount). The analysis applied to the Irrigation District of Divor, Évora, having used 7 experiment plots, which are areas watered by center-pivot systems, cultivated to corn. Data were determined from multispectral and infrared images of the cultivated surface obtained by satellite or by flying unmanned platform and integrated with parameters of the atmosphere and of the crops for calculating biophysical indicators and indices of water stress in the vegetation (NDVI, Kc, Kcb, CWSI). Therefore, evapotranspiration (ETc) was estimated, with which crop water requirement was calculated, with the opportunity and the amount of irrigation water to allocate. As this information is geographic referenced, maps can be prepared with GIS technology, describing water situation and the opportunity for watering crops. If the remote images are available with enough high spatial and temporal resolution, the frequent availability of maps can serve as a basis for a farmers irrigation advice system and for the regional irrigation authority to make decisions on the irrigation management at the regional scale. This can be a significant contribute to an efficient water management technology and a sustainable irrigated agriculture. Key-Words: Remote Sensing, Vegetation Index, Crop Coefficients, Water Balance

  18. Biophysical Mechanisms Underlying Hearing Loss Associated with a Shortened Tectorial Membrane

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oghalai, John S.; Xia, Anping; Liu, Christopher C.; Gao, Simon S.; Applegate, Brian E.; Puria, Sunil; Rousso, Itay; Steele, Charles

    2011-11-01

    The tectorial membrane (TM) connects to the stereociliary bundles of outer hair cells (OHCs). Herein, we summarize key experimental data and modeling analyses that describe how biophysical alterations to these connections underlie hearing loss. The heterozygous C1509G mutation in alpha tectorin produces partial congenital hearing loss that progresses in humans. We engineered this mutation in mice, and histology revealed that the TM was shortened. DIC imaging of freshly-dissected cochlea as well as imaging with optical coherence tomography indicated that the TM is malformed and only stimulates the first row of OHCs. Noise exposure produced acute threshold shifts that fully recovered in Tecta+/+ mice although there was some OHC loss within all three rows at the cochlear base. In contrast, threshold shifts only partially recovered in TectaC1509G/+ mice. This was associated with OHC loss more apically and nearly entirely within the first row. Young's modulus of the TM, measured using atomic force microscopy, was substantially reduced at the middle and basal regions. Both the wild-type and heterozygous conditions were simulated in a computational model. This demonstrated that the normalized stress distribution levels between the TM and the tall cilia were significantly elevated in the middle region of the heterozygous cochlea. Another feature of the TectaC1509G/+ mutation is higher prestin expression within all three rows of OHCs. This increased electricallyevoked movements of the reticular lamina and otoacoustic emissions. Furthermore, electrical stimulation was associated with an increased risk of OHC death as measured by vital dye staining. Together, these findings indicate that uncoupling of the TM from some OHCs not only leads to partial hearing loss, but also puts the OHCs that remain coupled at higher risk. Both the mechanics of the malformed TM and increased electromotility contribute to this higher risk profile.

  19. Human and biophysical influences on fire occurrence in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawbaker, Todd J.; Radeloff, Volker C.; Stewart, Susan I.; Hammer, Roger B.; Keuler, Nicholas S.; Clayton, Murray K.

    2013-01-01

    National-scale analyses of fire occurrence are needed to prioritize fire policy and management activities across the United States. However, the drivers of national-scale patterns of fire occurrence are not well understood, and how the relative importance of human or biophysical factors varies across the country is unclear. Our research goal was to model the drivers of fire occurrence within ecoregions across the conterminous United States. We used generalized linear models to compare the relative influence of human, vegetation, climate, and topographic variables on fire occurrence in the United States, as measured by MODIS active fire detections collected between 2000 and 2006. We constructed models for all fires and for large fires only and generated predictive maps to quantify fire occurrence probabilities. Areas with high fire occurrence probabilities were widespread in the Southeast, and localized in the Mountain West, particularly in southern California, Arizona, and New Mexico. Probabilities for large-fire occurrence were generally lower, but hot spots existed in the western and south-central United States The probability of fire occurrence is a critical component of fire risk assessments, in addition to vegetation type, fire behavior, and the values at risk. Many of the hot spots we identified have extensive development in the wildland–urban interface and are near large metropolitan areas. Our results demonstrated that human variables were important predictors of both all fires and large fires and frequently exhibited nonlinear relationships. However, vegetation, climate, and topography were also significant variables in most ecoregions. If recent housing growth trends and fire occurrence patterns continue, these areas will continue to challenge policies and management efforts seeking to balance the risks generated by wildfires with the ecological benefits of fire.

  20. Geospatial approach for assessment of biophysical vulnerability to agricultural drought and its intra-seasonal variations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sehgal, Vinay Kumar; Dhakar, Rajkumar

    2016-03-01

    The study presents a methodology to assess and map agricultural drought vulnerability during main kharif crop season at local scale and compare its intra-seasonal variations. A conceptual model of vulnerability based on variables of exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity was adopted, and spatial datasets of key biophysical factors contributing to vulnerability were generated using remote sensing and GIS for Rajasthan State of India. Hazard exposure was based on frequency and intensity of gridded standardized precipitation index (SPI). Agricultural sensitivity was based on soil water holding capacity as well as on frequency and intensity of normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI)-derived trend adjusted vegetation condition index (VCITadj). Percent irrigated area was used as a measure of adaptive capacity. Agricultural drought vulnerability was derived separately for early, mid, late, and whole kharif seasons by composting rating of factors using linear weighting scheme and pairwise comparison of multi-criteria evaluation. The regions showing very low to extreme rating of hazard exposure, drought sensitivity, and agricultural vulnerability were identified at all four time scales. The results indicate that high to extreme vulnerability occurs in more than 50% of net sown area in the state and such areas mostly occur in western, central, and southern parts. The higher vulnerability is on account of non-irrigated croplands, moderate to low water holding capacity of sandy soils, resulting in higher sensitivity, and located in regions with high probability of rainfall deficiency. The mid and late season vulnerability has been found to be much higher than that during early and whole season. Significant correlation of vulnerability rating with food grain productivity, drought recurrence period, crop area damaged in year 2009 and socioeconomic indicator of human development index (HDI) proves the general soundness of methodology. Replication of this methodology