Sample records for cell free system

  1. Creating a completely "cell-free" system for protein synthesis. (United States)

    Smith, Mark Thomas; Bennett, Anthony M; Hunt, Jeremy M; Bundy, Bradley C


    Cell-free protein synthesis is a promising tool to take biotechnology outside of the cell. A cell-free approach provides distinct advantages over in vivo systems including open access to the reaction environment and direct control over all chemical components for facile optimization and synthetic biology integration. Promising applications of cell-free systems include portable diagnostics, biotherapeutics expression, rational protein engineering, and biocatalyst production. The highest yielding and most economical cell-free systems use an extract composed of the soluble component of lysed Escherichia coli. Although E. coli lysis can be highly efficient (>99.999%), one persistent challenge is that the extract remains contaminated with up to millions of cells per mL. In this work, we examine the potential of multiple decontamination strategies to further reduce or eliminate bacteria in cell-free systems. Two strategies, sterile filtration and lyophilization, effectively eliminate contaminating cells while maintaining the systems' protein synthesis capabilities. Lyophilization provides the additional benefit of long-term stability at storage above freezing. Technologies for personalized, portable medicine and diagnostics can be expanded based on these foundational sterilized and completely "cell-free" systems.

  2. Improved cell-free RNA and protein synthesis system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun Li

    Full Text Available Cell-free RNA and protein synthesis (CFPS is becoming increasingly used for protein production as yields increase and costs decrease. Advances in reconstituted CFPS systems such as the Protein synthesis Using Recombinant Elements (PURE system offer new opportunities to tailor the reactions for specialized applications including in vitro protein evolution, protein microarrays, isotopic labeling, and incorporating unnatural amino acids. In this study, using firefly luciferase synthesis as a reporter system, we improved PURE system productivity up to 5 fold by adding or adjusting a variety of factors that affect transcription and translation, including Elongation factors (EF-Ts, EF-Tu, EF-G, and EF4, ribosome recycling factor (RRF, release factors (RF1, RF2, RF3, chaperones (GroEL/ES, BSA and tRNAs. The work provides a more efficient defined in vitro transcription and translation system and a deeper understanding of the factors that limit the whole system efficiency.

  3. Performance benchmarking of four cell-free protein expression systems. (United States)

    Gagoski, Dejan; Polinkovsky, Mark E; Mureev, Sergey; Kunert, Anne; Johnston, Wayne; Gambin, Yann; Alexandrov, Kirill


    Over the last half century, a range of cell-free protein expression systems based on pro- and eukaryotic organisms have been developed and have found a range of applications, from structural biology to directed protein evolution. While it is generally accepted that significant differences in performance among systems exist, there is a paucity of systematic experimental studies supporting this notion. Here, we took advantage of the species-independent translation initiation sequence to express and characterize 87 N-terminally GFP-tagged human cytosolic proteins of different sizes in E. coli, wheat germ (WGE), HeLa, and Leishmania-based (LTE) cell-free systems. Using a combination of single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy, SDS-PAGE, and Western blot analysis, we assessed the expression yields, the fraction of full-length translation product, and aggregation propensity for each of these systems. Our results demonstrate that the E. coli system has the highest expression yields. However, we observe that high expression levels are accompanied by production of truncated species-particularly pronounced in the case of proteins larger than 70 kDa. Furthermore, proteins produced in the E. coli system display high aggregation propensity, with only 10% of tested proteins being produced in predominantly monodispersed form. The WGE system was the most productive among eukaryotic systems tested. Finally, HeLa and LTE show comparable protein yields that are considerably lower than the ones achieved in the E. coli and WGE systems. The protein products produced in the HeLa system display slightly higher integrity, whereas the LTE-produced proteins have the lowest aggregation propensity among the systems analyzed. The high quality of HeLa- and LTE-produced proteins enable their analysis without purification and make them suitable for analysis of multi-domain eukaryotic proteins.

  4. Synthetic biology outside the cell: linking computational tools to cell-free systems. (United States)

    Lewis, Daniel D; Villarreal, Fernando D; Wu, Fan; Tan, Cheemeng


    As mathematical models become more commonly integrated into the study of biology, a common language for describing biological processes is manifesting. Many tools have emerged for the simulation of in vivo synthetic biological systems, with only a few examples of prominent work done on predicting the dynamics of cell-free synthetic systems. At the same time, experimental biologists have begun to study dynamics of in vitro systems encapsulated by amphiphilic molecules, opening the door for the development of a new generation of biomimetic systems. In this review, we explore both in vivo and in vitro models of biochemical networks with a special focus on tools that could be applied to the construction of cell-free expression systems. We believe that quantitative studies of complex cellular mechanisms and pathways in synthetic systems can yield important insights into what makes cells different from conventional chemical systems.

  5. A single-cell and feeder-free culture system for monkey embryonic stem cells. (United States)

    Ono, Takashi; Suzuki, Yutaka; Kato, Yosuke; Fujita, Risako; Araki, Toshihiro; Yamashita, Tomoko; Kato, Hidemasa; Torii, Ryuzo; Sato, Naoya


    Primate pluripotent stem cells (PSCs), including embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), hold great potential for research and application in regenerative medicine and drug discovery. To maximize primate PSC potential, a practical system is required for generating desired functional cells and reproducible differentiation techniques. Much progress regarding their culture systems has been reported to date; however, better methods would still be required for their practical use, particularly in industrial and clinical fields. Here we report a new single-cell and feeder-free culture system for primate PSCs, the key feature of which is an originally formulated serum-free medium containing FGF and activin. In this culture system, cynomolgus monkey ESCs can be passaged many times by single-cell dissociation with traditional trypsin treatment and can be propagated with a high proliferation rate as a monolayer without any feeder cells; further, typical PSC properties and genomic stability can be retained. In addition, it has been demonstrated that monkey ESCs maintained in the culture system can be used for various experiments such as in vitro differentiation and gene manipulation. Thus, compared with the conventional culture system, monkey ESCs grown in the aforementioned culture system can serve as a cell source with the following practical advantages: simple, stable, and easy cell maintenance; gene manipulation; cryopreservation; and desired differentiation. We propose that this culture system can serve as a reliable platform to prepare primate PSCs useful for future research and application.

  6. Overview of cell-free protein synthesis: historic landmarks, commercial systems, and expanding applications. (United States)

    Chong, Shaorong


    During the early days of molecular biology, cell-free protein synthesis played an essential role in deciphering the genetic code and contributed to our understanding of translation of protein from messenger RNA. Owing to several decades of major and incremental improvements, modern cell-free systems have achieved higher protein synthesis yields at lower production costs. Commercial cell-free systems are now available from a variety of material sources, ranging from "traditional" E. coli, rabbit reticulocyte lysate, and wheat germ extracts, to recent insect and human cell extracts, to defined systems reconstituted from purified recombinant components. Although each cell-free system has certain advantages and disadvantages, the diversity of the cell-free systems allows in vitro synthesis of a wide range of proteins for a variety of downstream applications. In the post-genomic era, cell-free protein synthesis has rapidly become the preferred approach for high-throughput functional and structural studies of proteins and a versatile tool for in vitro protein evolution and synthetic biology. This unit provides a brief history of cell-free protein synthesis and describes key advances in modern cell-free systems, practical differences between widely used commercial cell-free systems, and applications of this important technology.

  7. IRES-mediated translation of membrane proteins and glycoproteins in eukaryotic cell-free systems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas K Brödel

    Full Text Available Internal ribosome entry site (IRES elements found in the 5' untranslated region of mRNAs enable translation initiation in a cap-independent manner, thereby representing an alternative to cap-dependent translation in cell-free protein expression systems. However, IRES function is largely species-dependent so their utility in cell-free systems from different species is rather limited. A promising approach to overcome these limitations would be the use of IRESs that are able to recruit components of the translation initiation apparatus from diverse origins. Here, we present a solution to this technical problem and describe the ability of a number of viral IRESs to direct efficient protein expression in different eukaryotic cell-free expression systems. The IRES from the intergenic region (IGR of the Cricket paralysis virus (CrPV genome was shown to function efficiently in four different cell-free systems based on lysates derived from cultured Sf21, CHO and K562 cells as well as wheat germ. Our results suggest that the CrPV IGR IRES-based expression vector is universally applicable for a broad range of eukaryotic cell lysates. Sf21, CHO and K562 cell-free expression systems are particularly promising platforms for the production of glycoproteins and membrane proteins since they contain endogenous microsomes that facilitate the incorporation of membrane-spanning proteins and the formation of post-translational modifications. We demonstrate the use of the CrPV IGR IRES-based expression vector for the enhanced synthesis of various target proteins including the glycoprotein erythropoietin and the membrane proteins heparin-binding EGF-like growth factor receptor as well as epidermal growth factor receptor in the above mentioned eukaryotic cell-free systems. CrPV IGR IRES-mediated translation will facilitate the development of novel eukaryotic cell-free expression platforms as well as the high-yield synthesis of desired proteins in already established

  8. Cell-Free Protein Synthesis: Pros and Cons of Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Systems. (United States)

    Zemella, Anne; Thoring, Lena; Hoffmeister, Christian; Kubick, Stefan


    From its start as a small-scale in vitro system to study fundamental translation processes, cell-free protein synthesis quickly rose to become a potent platform for the high-yield production of proteins. In contrast to classical in vivo protein expression, cell-free systems do not need time-consuming cloning steps, and the open nature provides easy manipulation of reaction conditions as well as high-throughput potential. Especially for the synthesis of difficult to express proteins, such as toxic and transmembrane proteins, cell-free systems are of enormous interest. The modification of the genetic code to incorporate non-canonical amino acids into the target protein in particular provides enormous potential in biotechnology and pharmaceutical research and is in the focus of many cell-free projects. Many sophisticated cell-free systems for manifold applications have been established. This review describes the recent advances in cell-free protein synthesis and details the expanding applications in this field.

  9. Atomic force microscopy observation on nuclear reassembly in a cell-free system

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YANG Ning; CHEN Zhongcai; ZHANG Zhaohui; ZHU Xing; ZHAI Zhonghe; TANG Xiaowei


    Cell-free system is interesting and useful for studying nuclear assembly in mitosis. Atomic force micro- scopy (AFM), which is a simple way for imaging fixed reassemble nuclei with high resolution, has not been used in the cell-free system. In this paper, we put forward an air-drying sample preparation for AFM. Using AFM, we observed nuclear reassembly process within 100 nm resolution ina cell-free system. As a result, we found that the images were artifact-free, and with higher resolution compared with fluorescent optical microscope images. Furthermore, the morphology of membrane vesicles was obtained clearly, and a dynamic change of morphology during the vesicles' approaching to nuclear envelope was also observed, which is enlightened to understand the mechanism of nuclear envelope assembly.

  10. Gibberellic acid production by free and immobilized cells in different culture systems. (United States)

    Durán-Páramo, Enrique; Molina-Jiménez, Héctor; Brito-Arias, Marco A; Robles-Martínez, Fabián


    Gibberellic acid production was studied in different fermentation systems. Free and immobilized cells of Gibberella fujikuroi cultures in shake-flask, stirred and fixed-bed reactors were evaluated for the production of gibberellic acid (GA3). Gibberellic acid production with free cells cultured in a stirred reactor reached 0.206 g/L and a yield of 0.078 g of GA3/g biomass.

  11. Preparation of ubiquitin-conjugated proteins using an insect cell-free protein synthesis system. (United States)

    Suzuki, Takashi; Ezure, Toru; Ando, Eiji; Nishimura, Osamu; Utsumi, Toshihiko; Tsunasawa, Susumu


    Ubiquitination is one of the most significant posttranslational modifications (PTMs). To evaluate the ability of an insect cell-free protein synthesis system to carry out ubiquitin (Ub) conjugation to in vitro translated proteins, poly-Ub chain formation was studied in an insect cell-free protein synthesis system. Poly-Ub was generated in the presence of Ub aldehyde (UA), a de-ubiquitinating enzyme inhibitor. In vitro ubiquitination of the p53 tumor suppressor protein was also analyzed, and p53 was poly-ubiquitinated when Ub, UA, and Mdm2, an E3 Ub ligase (E3) for p53, were added to the in vitro reaction mixture. These results suggest that the insect cell-free protein synthesis system contains enzymatic activities capable of carrying out ubiquitination. CBB-detectable ubiquitinated p53 was easily purified from the insect cell-free protein synthesis system, allowing analysis of the Ub-conjugated proteins by mass spectrometry (MS). Lys 305 of p53 was identified as one of the Ub acceptor sites using this strategy. Thus, we conclude that the insect cell-free protein synthesis system is a powerful tool for studying various PTMs of eukaryotic proteins including ubiqutination presented here.

  12. New bioproduction systems: from molecular circuits to novel reactor concepts in cell-free biotechnology. (United States)

    Rupp, Steffen


    : The last decades witnessed a strong growth in several areas of biotechnology, especially in fields related to health, as well as in industrial biotechnology. Advances in molecular engineering now enable biotechnologists to design more efficient pathways in order to convert a larger spectrum of renewable resources into industrially used biofuels and chemicals as well as into new pharmaceuticals and therapeutic proteins. In addition material sciences advanced significantly making it more and more possible to integrate biology and engineering. One of the key questions currently is how to develop new ways of engineering biological systems to cope with the complexity and limitations given by the cell. The options to integrate biology with classical engineering advanced cell free technologies in the recent years significantly. Cell free protein production using cellular extracts is now a well-established universal technology for production of proteins derived from many organisms even at the milligram scale. Among other applications it has the potential to supply the demand for a multitude of enzymes and enzyme variants facilitating in vitro metabolic engineering. This review will briefly address the recent achievements and limitations of cell free conversions. Especially, the requirements for reactor systems in cell free biotechnology, a currently underdeveloped field, are reviewed and some perspectives are given on how material sciences and biotechnology might be able to advance these new developments in the future.

  13. Preliminary study on preparation of E.coli cell-free system for protein expression

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    In the new era of "Omics",the traditional techniques of protein expression in vivo can not come up with the exponential increase of genetic information.The cellfree protein synthesis system provides a new strategy of protein expression with advantages of rapid,convenient and high-throughput expression.The preparation of cell extracts,the optimization of substrate concentrations and the energy regeneration system are the key factors for the successful construction of cell-free protein expression system.In this work,the cell extract was prepared from RNase I- defective strain E.coli A19.The cell growth phase,the pressure for cell disruption and the storage condition of cell extracts were optimized.Meanwhile,the optimal substrate concentrations and the energy regeneration system were selected.Under the optimized conditions,the green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter gene was expressed in the E.coli cell-free system with high expression level (Ca.154 μg/mL) which was 29 times higher than the expression level before optimization.

  14. [Structure of the glial cells in the nervous system of parasitic and free-living flatworms]. (United States)

    Biserova, N M; Gordeev, I I; Korneva, Zh V; Sal'nikova, M M


    This study is devoted to ultrastructural and immunosytochemical investigation of the nervous system in parasitic and free-living platyhelminthes to learn if glial cells exist in the nervous system of flatworms. We described the ultrastructure of different types of glial cells and the peculiarities of myelinization of gigantic axons; immunoreactivity to the S100b protein is revealed. Comparative analysis of the glia structure of annelids and platods is given; structural, functional, and evolutionary aspects of myelinization of gigantic axons, which are revealed in cestodes, are discussed.

  15. In vitro Fab display: a cell-free system for IgG discovery. (United States)

    Stafford, Ryan L; Matsumoto, Marissa L; Yin, Gang; Cai, Qi; Fung, Juan Jose; Stephenson, Heather; Gill, Avinash; You, Monica; Lin, Shwu-Hwa; Wang, Willie D; Masikat, Mary Rose; Li, Xiaofan; Penta, Kalyani; Steiner, Alex R; Baliga, Ramesh; Murray, Christopher J; Thanos, Christopher D; Hallam, Trevor J; Sato, Aaron K


    Selection technologies such as ribosome display enable the rapid discovery of novel antibody fragments entirely in vitro. It has been assumed that the open nature of the cell-free reactions used in these technologies limits selections to single-chain protein fragments. We present a simple approach for the selection of multi-chain proteins, such as antibody Fab fragments, using ribosome display. Specifically, we show that a two-chain trastuzumab (Herceptin) Fab domain can be displayed in a format which tethers either the heavy or light chain to the ribosome while retaining functional antigen binding. Then, we constructed synthetic Fab HC and LC libraries and performed test selections against carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). The Fab selection output was reformatted into full-length immunoglobulin Gs (IgGs) and directly expressed at high levels in an optimized cell-free system for immediate screening, purification and characterization. Several novel IgGs were identified using this cell-free platform that bind to purified CEA, CEA positive cells and VEGF.

  16. Sodium nitrite induces acute central nervous system toxicity in guinea pigs exposed to systemic cell-free hemoglobin

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    Buehler, Paul W.; Butt, Omer I. [Laboratory of Biochemistry and Vascular Biology, Division of Hematology, Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, Bethesda, MD (United States); D' Agnillo, Felice, E-mail: [Laboratory of Biochemistry and Vascular Biology, Division of Hematology, Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, Bethesda, MD (United States)


    Highlights: {yields} Toxicological implications associated with the use of NaNO{sub 2} therapy to treat systemic cell-free Hb exposure are not well-defined. {yields} Systemic Hb exposure followed by NaNO{sub 2} infusion induces acute CNS toxicities in guinea pigs. {yields} These CNS effects were not reproduced by the infusion of cell-free Hb or NaNO{sub 2} alone. {yields} NaNO{sub 2}-mediated oxidation of cell-free Hb may play a causative role in the observed CNS changes. -- Abstract: Systemic cell-free hemoglobin (Hb) released via hemolysis disrupts vascular homeostasis, in part, through the scavenging of nitric oxide (NO). Sodium nitrite (NaNO{sub 2}) therapy can attenuate the hypertensive effects of Hb. However, the chemical reactivity of NaNO{sub 2} with Hb may enhance heme- or iron-mediated toxicities. Here, we investigate the effect of NaNO{sub 2} on the central nervous system (CNS) in guinea pigs exposed to systemic cell-free Hb. Intravascular infusion of NaNO{sub 2}, at doses sufficient to alleviate Hb-mediated blood pressure changes, reduced the expression of occludin, but not zona occludens-1 (ZO-1) or claudin-5, in cerebral tight junctions 4 h after Hb infusion. This was accompanied by increased perivascular heme oxygenase-1 expression, neuronal iron deposition, increased astrocyte and microglial activation, and reduced expression of neuron-specific nuclear protein (NeuN). These CNS changes were not observed in animals treated with Hb or NaNO{sub 2} alone. Taken together, these findings suggest that the use of nitrite salts to treat systemic Hb exposure may promote acute CNS toxicity.

  17. Nicotiana ovule extracts in duce nuclear reconstitution of demembranated Xenopus sperm in cell-free system

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    s Nicotiana tabaccum ovule extracts induced nuclear reconstitution of demembranated Xenopus leavis sperm in a ceil-free system. Demembranated Xenopus sperm began to swell after 15 rmin of incubation with Nicotiana ovulde extracts. Accompanying the process of incubation,Xenopus sperm decondensed and their shapes changed gradually from long and ellipse to round. The completely decondensed chromatin was surrounded with membrane structure, which was a mixture envelope of a double membrane and a single membrane. Nucleosome assembly was verified by means of micrococcal nuclease digestion to reconstituted nuclei and DNA electrophoresis. Nicotiana ovule extracts supplied one more experimental model and system.The new system could promote powerfully the research on mechanisms of cell division and cell cycle regulation.

  18. Membrane protein synthesis in cell-free systems: from bio-mimetic systems to bio-membranes. (United States)

    Sachse, Rita; Dondapati, Srujan K; Fenz, Susanne F; Schmidt, Thomas; Kubick, Stefan


    When taking up the gauntlet of studying membrane protein functionality, scientists are provided with a plethora of advantages, which can be exploited for the synthesis of these difficult-to-express proteins by utilizing cell-free protein synthesis systems. Due to their hydrophobicity, membrane proteins have exceptional demands regarding their environment to ensure correct functionality. Thus, the challenge is to find the appropriate hydrophobic support that facilitates proper membrane protein folding. So far, various modes of membrane protein synthesis have been presented. Here, we summarize current state-of-the-art methodologies of membrane protein synthesis in biomimetic-supported systems. The correct folding and functionality of membrane proteins depend in many cases on their integration into a lipid bilayer and subsequent posttranslational modification. We highlight cell-free systems utilizing the advantages of biological membranes.

  19. Human embryonic stem cell cultivation: historical perspective and evolution of xeno-free culture systems. (United States)

    Desai, Nina; Rambhia, Pooja; Gishto, Arsela


    Human embryonic stem cells (hESC) have emerged as attractive candidates for cell-based therapies that are capable of restoring lost cell and tissue function. These unique cells are able to self-renew indefinitely and have the capacity to differentiate in to all three germ layers (ectoderm, endoderm and mesoderm). Harnessing the power of these pluripotent stem cells could potentially offer new therapeutic treatment options for a variety of medical conditions. Since the initial derivation of hESC lines in 1998, tremendous headway has been made in better understanding stem cell biology and culture requirements for maintenance of pluripotency. The approval of the first clinical trials of hESC cells for treatment of spinal cord injury and macular degeneration in 2010 marked the beginning of a new era in regenerative medicine. Yet it was clearly recognized that the clinical utility of hESC transplantation was still limited by several challenges. One of the most immediate issues has been the exposure of stem cells to animal pathogens, during hESC derivation and during in vitro propagation. Initial culture protocols used co-culture with inactivated mouse fibroblast feeder (MEF) or human feeder layers with fetal bovine serum or alternatively serum replacement proteins to support stem cell proliferation. Most hESC lines currently in use have been exposed to animal products, thus carrying the risk of xeno-transmitted infections and immune reaction. This mini review provides a historic perspective on human embryonic stem cell culture and the evolution of new culture models. We highlight the challenges and advances being made towards the development of xeno-free culture systems suitable for therapeutic applications.

  20. Differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells into nephron progenitor cells in a serum and feeder free system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Minyong Kang

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: Kidney disease is emerging as a critical medical problem worldwide. Because of limited treatment options for the damaged kidney, stem cell treatment is becoming an alternative therapeutic approach. Of many possible human stem cell sources, pluripotent stem cells are most attractive due to their self-renewal and pluripotent capacity. However, little is known about the derivation of renal lineage cells from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs. In this study, we developed a novel protocol for differentiation of nephron progenitor cells (NPCs from hPSCs in a serum- and feeder-free system. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We designed step-wise protocols for differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells toward primitive streak, intermediate mesoderm and NPCs by recapitulating normal nephrogenesis. Expression of key marker genes was examined by RT-PCR, real time RT-PCR and immunocytochemistry. Each experiment was independently performed three times to confirm its reproducibility. RESULTS: After modification of culture period and concentration of exogenous factors, hPSCs can differentiate into NPCs that markedly express specific marker genes such as SIX2, GDNF, HOXD11, WT1 and CITED1 in addition to OSR1, PAX2, SALL1 and EYA1. Moreover, NPCs possess the potential of bidirectional differentiation into both renal tubular epithelial cells and glomerular podocytes in defined culture conditions. In particular, approximately 70% of SYN-positive cells were obtained from hPSC-derived NPCs after podocytes induction. NPCs can also form in vitro tubule-like structures in three dimensional culture systems. CONCLUSIONS: Our novel protocol for hPSCs differentiation into NPCs can be useful for producing alternative sources of cell replacement therapy and disease modeling for human kidney diseases.

  1. Sodium nitrite induces acute central nervous system toxicity in guinea pigs exposed to systemic cell-free hemoglobin. (United States)

    Buehler, Paul W; Butt, Omer I; D'Agnillo, Felice


    Systemic cell-free hemoglobin (Hb) released via hemolysis disrupts vascular homeostasis, in part, through the scavenging of nitric oxide (NO). Sodium nitrite (NaNO(2)) therapy can attenuate the hypertensive effects of Hb. However, the chemical reactivity of NaNO(2) with Hb may enhance heme- or iron-mediated toxicities. Here, we investigate the effect of NaNO(2) on the central nervous system (CNS) in guinea pigs exposed to systemic cell-free Hb. Intravascular infusion of NaNO(2), at doses sufficient to alleviate Hb-mediated blood pressure changes, reduced the expression of occludin, but not zona occludens-1 (ZO-1) or claudin-5, in cerebral tight junctions 4h after Hb infusion. This was accompanied by increased perivascular heme oxygenase-1 expression, neuronal iron deposition, increased astrocyte and microglial activation, and reduced expression of neuron-specific nuclear protein (NeuN). These CNS changes were not observed in animals treated with Hb or NaNO(2) alone. Taken together, these findings suggest that the use of nitrite salts to treat systemic Hb exposure may promote acute CNS toxicity.

  2. Prolonging cell-free protein synthesis with a novel ATP regeneration system. (United States)

    Kim, D M; Swartz, J R


    A new approach for the regeneration of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) during cell-free protein synthesis was developed to prolong the synthesis and also to avoid the accumulation of inorganic phosphate. This approach was demonstrated in a batch system derived from Escherichia coli. Contrary to the conventional methods in which exogenous energy sources contain high-energy phosphate bonds, the new system was designed to generate continuously the required high-energy phosphate bonds within the reaction mixture, thereby recycling the phosphate released during protein synthesis. If allowed to accumulate, phosphate inhibits protein synthesis, most likely by reducing the concentration of free magnesium ion. Pediococcus sp. pyruvate oxidase, when introduced in the reaction mixture along with thiamine pyrophosphate (TPP) and flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD), catalyzed the generation of acetyl phosphate from pyruvate and inorganic phosphate. Acetyl kinase, already present with sufficient activity in Escherichia coli S30 extract, then catalyzed the regeneration of ATP. Oxygen is required for the generation of acetyl phosphate and the H(2)O(2) produced as a byproduct is sufficiently degraded by endogenous catalase activity. Through the continuous supply of chemical energy, and also through the prevention of inorganic phosphate accumulation, the duration of protein synthesis is extended up to 2 h. Protein accumulation levels also increase. The synthesis of human lymphotoxin receives greater benefit than than that of chloramphenicol acetyl transferase, because the former is more sensitive to phosphate inhibition. Finally, through repeated addition of pyruvate and amino acids during the reaction period, protein synthesis continued for 6 h in the new system, resulting in a final yield of 0.7 mg/mL.

  3. Characterization of a cell-free protein synthesizing system isolated from rat brain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rajagopalan, L.E.; Harper, A.E.


    The authors have characterized a cell-free preparation from rat brain that can initiate translation of endogenous mRNAs in vitro and maintain protein synthesis for at least 90 minutes at an optimum temperature of 37C. The essential component of this system is a postmitochondrial supernate (PMS) obtained by centrifuging a whole brain homogenate at 10,000 x g for 10 minutes at 4C. In the presence of phosphocreatine (PC), ATP and GTP there is active incorporation of (TVS)methionine into trichloroacetic acid precipitable protein. Incorporation is sensitive to the concentrations of PC, magnesium and potassium ions and spermidine and is inhibited 50-60% in the presence of 7-methylguanosine 5'-monophosphate, a specific inhibitor of polypeptide chain initiation. The proteolysis of brain protein that occurs when the system is incubated for more than 60 min. can be minimized by adding bovine serum albumin. The addition of 3.0 mM 5'-guanylimidodiphosphate a non-hydrolyzable analog of GTP, blocks incorporation entirely. The phosphocreatine requirement for maintaining an optimum endogenous concentration of GTP is lowered from 10.0 mM to 5.0 mM in the presence of 2.0 mM NADPH. The system that initiates protein synthesis in vitro can be used to study changes in brain protein synthesis as a result of various treatments, and the mechanisms underlying such changes.

  4. Protein Degradation in a TX-TL Cell-free Expression System Using ClpXP Protease (United States)


    1! Protein degradation in a TX-TL cell-free expression system using ClpXP protease AUTHORS: Zachary Z. Sun1, Jongmin Kim1, Vipul Singhal2...COVERED 00-00-2014 to 00-00-2014 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Protein Degradation in a TX-TL Cell-free Expression System Using ClpXP Protease and expertise or demand lower reaction throughput. We explored the possibility of supplementing TX-TL with ClpXP, an AAA+ protease

  5. Recombinant Nox4 cytosolic domain produced by a cell or cell-free base systems exhibits constitutive diaphorase activity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nguyen, Minh Vu Chuong, E-mail: [GREPI AGIM FRE 3405 CNRS-UJF, Universite Joseph Fourier, Grenoble (France); Zhang, Leilei [GREPI AGIM FRE 3405 CNRS-UJF, Universite Joseph Fourier, Grenoble (France); Lhomme, Stanislas; Mouz, Nicolas [PX' Therapeutics, MINATEC/Batiment de Haute Technologie, Grenoble (France); Lenormand, Jean-Luc [HumProTher Laboratory, TheReX/TIMC-IMAG UMR 5525 CNRS UJF, Universite Joseph Fourier, UFR de Medecine, Domaine de la Merci, 38706 La Tronche (France); Lardy, Bernard; Morel, Francoise [GREPI AGIM FRE 3405 CNRS-UJF, Universite Joseph Fourier, Grenoble (France)


    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer A comparison of two bacterial cell and cell-free protein expression systems is presented. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Soluble and active truncated Nox4 proteins are produced. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Nox4 has a constitutive diaphorase activity which is independent of cytosolic factors. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Isoform Nox4B is unable to initiate the first electronic transfer step. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Findings contribute to the understanding of the mechanism of Nox4 oxidase activity. -- Abstract: The membrane protein NADPH (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate) oxidase Nox4 constitutively generates reactive oxygen species differing from other NADPH oxidases activity, particularly in Nox2 which needs a stimulus to be active. Although the precise mechanism of production of reactive oxygen species by Nox2 is well characterized, the electronic transfer throughout Nox4 remains unclear. Our study aims to investigate the initial electronic transfer step (diaphorase activity) of the cytosolic tail of Nox4. For this purpose, we developed two different approaches to produce soluble and active truncated Nox4 proteins. We synthesized soluble recombinant proteins either by in vitro translation or by bacteria induction. While proteins obtained by bacteria induction demonstrate an activity of 4.4 {+-} 1.7 nmol/min/nmol when measured against iodonitro tetrazolium chloride and 20.5 {+-} 2.8 nmol/min/nmol with cytochrome c, the soluble proteins produced by cell-free expression system exhibit a diaphorase activity with a turn-over of 26 {+-} 2.6 nmol/min/nmol when measured against iodonitro tetrazolium chloride and 48 {+-} 20.2 nmol/min/nmol with cytochrome c. Furthermore, the activity of the soluble proteins is constitutive and does not need any stimulus. We also show that the cytosolic tail of the isoform Nox4B lacking the first NADPH binding site is unable to demonstrate any diaphorase activity pointing out the

  6. Comparison of cells free in coelomic and water-vascular system of sea cucumber, Apostichopus japonicus. (United States)

    Li, Qiang; Qi, Rui-rong; Wang, Yi-nan; Ye, Shi-gen; Qiao, Guo; Li, Hua


    The sea cucumber, Apostichopus japonicus possesses a variety of cells populating in both the coelomic (cells in the coelomic are called coelomocytes) and water-vascular system. In this study, we compared cells in these two systems of A. japonicus on total cell number, cell types and surface antigens through monoclonal antibodies against coelomocytes. The results demonstrated that the cell types observed in coelomic also could be found in water-vascular system, but the total cell number and percentages of each type were different. The total number of coelomocytes was 2-3 times of that in water-vascular system. Lymphoid cells were numerically dominant in coelomic system, while spherulocytes with pseudopods in water-vascular system. Results of indirect immunofluorescence assay technique showed that both coelomocytes and cells in water-vascular system could be recognized by the corresponding MAbs, and the distribution of its positive signals was not different. In conclusion, cell types and surface antigens in coelomic and water-vascular system were same, but the total cell number and percentages of each type were different. And further researches are needed on whether there are differences in functions of the different composition.

  7. Establishment of feeder-free culture system for human induced pluripotent stem cell on DAS nanocrystalline graphene (United States)

    Lee, Hyunah; Nam, Donggyu; Choi, Jae-Kyung; Araúzo-Bravo, Marcos J.; Kwon, Soon-Yong; Zaehres, Holm; Lee, Taehee; Park, Chan Young; Kang, Hyun-Wook; Schöler, Hans R.; Kim, Jeong Beom


    The maintenance of undifferentiated human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC) under xeno-free condition requires the use of human feeder cells or extracellular matrix (ECM) coating. However, human-derived sources may cause human pathogen contamination by viral or non-viral agents to the patients. Here we demonstrate feeder-free and xeno-free culture system for hPSC expansion using diffusion assisted synthesis-grown nanocrystalline graphene (DAS-NG), a synthetic non-biological nanomaterial which completely rule out the concern of human pathogen contamination. DAS-NG exhibited advanced biocompatibilities including surface nanoroughness, oxygen containing functional groups and hydrophilicity. hPSC cultured on DAS-NG could maintain pluripotency in vitro and in vivo, and especially cell adhesion-related gene expression profile was comparable to those of cultured on feeders, while hPSC cultured without DAS-NG differentiated spontaneously with high expression of somatic cell-enriched adhesion genes. This feeder-free and xeno-free culture method using DAS-NG will facilitate the generation of clinical-grade hPSC.

  8. The xCELLigence system for real-time and label-free monitoring of cell viability. (United States)

    Ke, Ning; Wang, Xiaobo; Xu, Xiao; Abassi, Yama A


    We describe here the use of the xCELLigence system for label-free and real-time monitoring of cell -viability. The xCELLigence system uses specially designed microtiter plates containing interdigitated gold microelectrodes to noninvasively monitor the viability of cultured cells using electrical impedance as the readout. The continuous monitoring of cell viability by the xCELLigence system makes it possible to distinguish between different perturbations of cell viability, such as senescence, cell toxicity (cell death), and reduced proliferation (cell cycle arrest). In addition, the time resolution of the xCELLigence system allows for the determination of optimal time points to perform standard cell viability assays as well as other end-point assays to understand the mode of action. We have used the WST-1 assay (end-point viability readout), the cell index determination (continuous monitoring of viability by xCELLigence), and the DNA fragmentation assay (end-point apoptosis assay) to systematically examine cytotoxic effects triggered by two cytotoxic compounds with different cell-killing kinetics. Good correlation was observed for viability readouts between WST-1 and cell index. The significance of time resolution by xCELLigence readout is exemplified by its ability to pinpoint the optimal time points for conducting end point viability and apoptosis assays.

  9. Development and application of a high-throughput cell-free expression system


    Kai, Lei


    At the post genomics age, the study of proteomics attracts more and more attention and help to decipher the hidden information inside genes. However, the study of proteomics required large amount or large number of proteins to be synthesized. During the past several decades, heterologous overexpression of recombinant protein from bacteria, yeast, insect cells and mammalian cells was developed. Especially the E. coli system, which is the most studied expression system, was used to obtain diffe...

  10. Heterotrophic nature of the cell-free protein-synthesizing system from the strict chemolithotroph, Thiobacillus thiooxidans. (United States)

    Amemiya, K; Umbreit, W W


    A cell-free protein-synthesizing system prepared from the strict chemolithotroph, Thiobacillus thiooxidans, was similar to that of heterotrophs. The poly-U directed system had a temperature optimum of 37 C, but in the presence of spermidine (3 mM) the optimum shifted to 45 C. Although growth of the chemolithotroph occurs only in acid conditions, the pH optimum for the cell-free system was pH 7.2. The endogenous-directed activity in the presence or absence of spermidine was maximal at pH 7.8. Spermidine had a stimulatory effect; however, this effect was dependent on the magnesium and tris(hydroxymethyl)aminomethane (Tris) concentrations. At low Tris concentrations (10 mM), spermidine (3 to 5 mM) could completely replace magnesium. When the Tris concentration was increased (50 mM), spermidine could not replace magnesium. Supernatant and ribosomal fractions from T. thiooxidans were exchanged with those of Bacillus thuringiensis and Escherichia coli, and the ribosomal fraction from the chemolithotroph gave good to moderate stimulation when exchanged with the supernatant from the heterotrophs. On the other hand, the supernatant from T. thiooxidans gave good stimulation when mixed with ribosomes from B. thuringiensis but poor activity with ribosomes from E. coli. Both supernatant and ribosomal fractions prepared from stationary phase extracts of T. thiooxidans were inactive in the cell-free system.

  11. N-terminal fusion tags for effective production of g-protein-coupled receptors in bacterial cell-free systems. (United States)

    Lyukmanova, E N; Shenkarev, Z O; Khabibullina, N F; Kulbatskiy, D S; Shulepko, M A; Petrovskaya, L E; Arseniev, A S; Dolgikh, D A; Kirpichnikov, M P


    G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCR) constitute one of the biggest families of membrane proteins. In spite of the fact that they are highly relevant to pharmacy, they have remained poorly explored. One of the main bottlenecks encountered in structural-functional studies of GPCRs is the difficulty to produce sufficient amounts of the proteins. Cell-free systems based on bacterial extracts fromE. colicells attract much attention as an effective tool for recombinant production of membrane proteins. GPCR production in bacterial cell-free expression systems is often inefficient because of the problems associated with the low efficiency of the translation initiation process. This problem could be resolved if GPCRs were expressed in the form of hybrid proteins with N-terminal polypeptide fusion tags. In the present work, three new N-terminal fusion tags are proposed for cell-free production of the human β2-adrenergic receptor, human M1 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor, and human somatostatin receptor type 5. It is demonstrated that the application of an N-terminal fragment (6 a.a.) of bacteriorhodopsin fromExiguobacterium sibiricum(ESR-tag), N-terminal fragment (16 а.о.) of RNAse A (S-tag), and Mistic protein fromB. subtilisallows to increase the CF synthesis of the target GPCRs by 5-38 times, resulting in yields of 0.6-3.8 mg from 1 ml of the reaction mixture, which is sufficient for structural-functional studies.

  12. Differentiation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells to Endothelial Progenitor Cells on Laminins in Defined and Xeno-free Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mien T.X. Nguyen


    Full Text Available A major hurdle for in vitro culturing of primary endothelial cells (ECs is that they readily dedifferentiate, hampering their use for therapeutic applications. Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs may provide an unlimited cell source; however, most current protocols deriving endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs from hESCs use direct differentiation approaches albeit on undefined matrices, yet final yields are insufficient. We developed a method to culture monolayer hESCs on stem cell niche laminin (LN LN511 or LN521 matrix. Here, we report a chemically defined, xeno-free protocol for differentiation of hESCs to EPCs using LN521 as the main culture substrate. We were able to generate ∼95% functional EPCs defined as VEGFR2+CD34+CD31+VE-Cadherin+. RNA-sequencing analyses of hESCs, EPCs, and primary human umbilical vein endothelial cells showed differentiation-related EC expression signatures, regarding basement membrane composition, cell-matrix interactions, and changes in endothelial lineage markers. Our results may facilitate production of stable ECs for the treatment of vascular diseases and in vitro cell modeling.

  13. Defining minimum essential factors to derive highly pure human endothelial cells from iPS/ES cells in an animal substance-free system. (United States)

    Wu, Yu-Ting; I-Shing Yu; Tsai, Kuen-Jer; Shih, Chien-Yu; Hwang, Shiaw-Min; Su, Ih-Jen; Chiang, Po-Min


    It is desirable to obtain unlimited supplies of endothelial cells for research and therapeutics. However, current methods of deriving endothelial cells from humans suffer from issues, such as limited supplies, contamination from animal substances, and lengthy/complicated procedures. In this article we developed a way to differentiate human iPS and ES cells to highly pure endothelial cells in 5 days. The chemically defined system is robust, easy to perform, and free of animal substances. Using the system, we verified that combined TGFβ and canonical Wnt agonists are essential and sufficient for iPS/ES cell-to-mesoderm transition. Besides, VEGF-KDR signaling alone is required for endothelial formation at high density while supplementation with FGF allows for colonial endothelial differentiation. Finally, anti-adsorptive agents could enrich the endothelial output by allowing selective attachment of the endothelial precursors. The system was validated to work on multiple iPS/ES cells lines to produce endothelial cells capable of forming capillary-like structures in vitro and integrating into host vasculature in vivo. In sum, the simple yet robust differentiation system permits the unlimited supply of human endothelial cells. The defined and animal substance-free nature of the system is compatible with clinical applications and characterization of endothelial differentiation in an unbiased manner.

  14. Development of a Xeno-Free Feeder-Layer System from Human Umbilical Cord Mesenchymal Stem Cells for Prolonged Expansion of Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells in Culture. (United States)

    Zou, Qing; Wu, Mingjun; Zhong, Liwu; Fan, Zhaoxin; Zhang, Bo; Chen, Qiang; Ma, Feng


    Various feeder layers have been extensively applied to support the prolonged growth of human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) for in vitro cultures. Among them, mouse embryonic fibroblast (MEF) and mouse fibroblast cell line (SNL) are most commonly used feeder cells for hPSCs culture. However, these feeder layers from animal usually cause immunogenic contaminations, which compromises the potential of hPSCs in clinical applications. In the present study, we tested human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (hUC-MSCs) as a potent xeno-free feeder system for maintaining human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs). The hUC-MSCs showed characteristics of MSCs in xeno-free culture condition. On the mitomycin-treated hUC-MSCs feeder, hiPSCs maintained the features of undifferentiated human embryonic stem cells (hESCs), such as low efficiency of spontaneous differentiation, stable expression of stemness markers, maintenance of normal karyotypes, in vitro pluripotency and in vivo ability to form teratomas, even after a prolonged culture of more than 30 passages. Our study indicates that the xeno-free culture system may be a good candidate for growth and expansion of hiPSCs as the stepping stone for stem cell research to further develop better and safer stem cells.

  15. Responding to chromosomal breakage during M-phase: insights from a cell-free system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Costanzo Vincenzo


    Full Text Available Abstract DNA double strand breaks (DSBs activate ATM and ATR dependent checkpoints that prevent the onset of mitosis. However, how cells react to DSBs occurring when they are already in mitosis is poorly understood. The Xenopus egg extract has been utilized to study cell cycle progression and DNA damage checkpoints. Recently this system has been successfully used to uncover an ATM and ATR dependent checkpoint affecting centrosome driven spindle assembly. These studies have led to the identification of XCEP63 as major target of this pathway. XCEP63 is a coiled-coil rich protein localized at centrosome essential for proper spindle assembly. ATM and ATR directly phosphorylate XCEP63 on serine 560 inducing its delocalization from centrosome, which in turn delays spindle assembly. This pathway might contribute to regulate DNA repair or mitotic cell survival in the presence of chromosome breakage.

  16. A xenogeneic-free bioreactor system for the clinical-scale expansion of human mesenchymal stem/stromal cells. (United States)

    Dos Santos, Francisco; Campbell, Andrew; Fernandes-Platzgummer, Ana; Andrade, Pedro Z; Gimble, Jeffrey M; Wen, Yuan; Boucher, Shayne; Vemuri, Mohan C; da Silva, Cláudia L; Cabral, Joaquim M S


    The large cell doses (>1 × 10(6)  cells/kg) used in clinical trials with mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSC) will require an efficient production process. Moreover, monitoring and control of MSC ex-vivo expansion is critical to provide a safe and reliable cell product. Bioprocess engineering approaches, such as bioreactor technology, offer the adequate tools to develop and optimize a cost-effective culture system for the rapid expansion of human MSC for cellular therapy. Herein, a xenogeneic (xeno)-free microcarrier-based culture system was successfully established for bone marrow (BM) MSC and adipose tissue-derived stem/stromal cell (ASC) cultivation using a 1L-scale controlled stirred-tank bioreactor, allowing the production of (1.1 ± 0.1) × 10(8) and (4.5 ± 0.2) × 10(7) cells for BM MSC and ASC, respectively, after 7 days. Additionally, the effect of different percent air saturation values (%Airsat ) and feeding regime on the proliferation and metabolism of BM MSC was evaluated. No significant differences in cell growth and metabolic patterns were observed under 20% and 9%Airsat . Also, the three different feeding regimes studied-(i) 25% daily medium renewal, (ii) 25% medium renewal every 2 days, and (iii) fed-batch addition of concentrated nutrients and growth factors every 2 days-yielded similar cell numbers, and only slight metabolic differences were observed. Moreover, the immunophenotype (positive for CD73, CD90 and CD105 and negative for CD31, CD80 and HLA-DR) and multilineage differentiative potential of expanded cells were not affected upon bioreactor culture. These results demonstrated the feasibility of expanding human MSC from different sources in a clinically relevant expansion configuration in a controlled microcarrier-based stirred culture system under xeno-free conditions. The further optimization of this bioreactor culture system will represent a crucial step towards an efficient GMP-compliant clinical-scale MSC

  17. On Orbit Immuno-Based, Label-Free, White Blood Cell Counting System with MicroElectroMechanical Sensor (MEMS) Technology (OILWBCS-MEMS) Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation and partner, Draper Laboratory, propose to develop an on-orbit immuno-based label-free white blood cell counting system using MEMS...

  18. On Orbit Immuno-Based, Label-Free, White Blood Cell Counting System with MicroElectroMechanical Sensor (MEMS) Technology (OILWBCS-MEMS) Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation and our partner, Draper Laboratory, propose to develop an on orbit immuno-based, label-free, white blood cell counting system for...

  19. Blood-Brain Barrier Disruption and Oxidative Stress in Guinea Pig after Systemic Exposure to Modified Cell-Free Hemoglobin (United States)

    Butt, Omer I.; Buehler, Paul W.; D'Agnillo, Felice


    Systemic exposure to cell-free hemoglobin (Hb) or its breakdown products after hemolysis or with the use of Hb-based oxygen therapeutics may alter the function and integrity of the blood-brain barrier. Using a guinea pig exchange transfusion model, we investigated the effect of a polymerized cell-free Hb (HbG) on the expression of endothelial tight junction proteins (zonula occludens 1, claudin-5, and occludin), astrocyte activation, IgG extravasation, heme oxygenase (HO), iron deposition, oxidative end products (4-hydroxynonenal adducts and 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine), and apoptosis (cleaved caspase 3). Reduced zonula occludens 1 expression was observed after HbG transfusion as evidenced by Western blot and confocal microscopy. Claudin-5 distribution was altered in small- to medium-sized vessels. However, total expression of claudin-5 and occludin remained unchanged except for a notable increase in occludin 72 hours after HbG transfusion. HbG-transfused animals also showed increased astrocytic glial fibrillary acidic protein expression and IgG extravasation after 72 hours. Increased HO activity and HO-1 expression with prominent enhancement of HO-1 immunoreactivity in CD163-expressing perivascular cells and infiltrating monocytes/macrophages were also observed. Consistent with oxidative stress, HbG increased iron deposition, 4-hydroxynonenal and 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine immunoreactivity, and cleaved caspase-3 expression. Systemic exposure to an extracellular Hb triggers blood-brain barrier disruption and oxidative stress, which may have important implications for the use of Hb-based therapeutics and may provide indirect insight on the central nervous system vasculopathies associated with excessive hemolysis. PMID:21356382

  20. Rapidly characterizing the fast dynamics of RNA genetic circuitry with cell-free transcription-translation (TX-TL) systems. (United States)

    Takahashi, Melissa K; Chappell, James; Hayes, Clarmyra A; Sun, Zachary Z; Kim, Jongmin; Singhal, Vipul; Spring, Kevin J; Al-Khabouri, Shaima; Fall, Christopher P; Noireaux, Vincent; Murray, Richard M; Lucks, Julius B


    RNA regulators are emerging as powerful tools to engineer synthetic genetic networks or rewire existing ones. A potential strength of RNA networks is that they may be able to propagate signals on time scales that are set by the fast degradation rates of RNAs. However, a current bottleneck to verifying this potential is the slow design-build-test cycle of evaluating these networks in vivo. Here, we adapt an Escherichia coli-based cell-free transcription-translation (TX-TL) system for rapidly prototyping RNA networks. We used this system to measure the response time of an RNA transcription cascade to be approximately five minutes per step of the cascade. We also show that this response time can be adjusted with temperature and regulator threshold tuning. Finally, we use TX-TL to prototype a new RNA network, an RNA single input module, and show that this network temporally stages the expression of two genes in vivo.

  1. Cell-free synthetic biology: thinking outside the cell. (United States)

    Hodgman, C Eric; Jewett, Michael C


    Cell-free synthetic biology is emerging as a powerful approach aimed to understand, harness, and expand the capabilities of natural biological systems without using intact cells. Cell-free systems bypass cell walls and remove genetic regulation to enable direct access to the inner workings of the cell. The unprecedented level of control and freedom of design, relative to in vivo systems, has inspired the rapid development of engineering foundations for cell-free systems in recent years. These efforts have led to programmed circuits, spatially organized pathways, co-activated catalytic ensembles, rational optimization of synthetic multi-enzyme pathways, and linear scalability from the micro-liter to the 100-liter scale. It is now clear that cell-free systems offer a versatile test-bed for understanding why nature's designs work the way they do and also for enabling biosynthetic routes to novel chemicals, sustainable fuels, and new classes of tunable materials. While challenges remain, the emergence of cell-free systems is poised to open the way to novel products that until now have been impractical, if not impossible, to produce by other means.

  2. Initiation of V(D)J recombination in a cell-free system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    D.C. van Gent (Dik); J.F. McBlane; D.A. Ramsden; M.J. Sadokfsky; J.E. Hesse (Joanne); M. Gellert


    textabstractCells performing V(D)J recombination make specific cuts in DNA at recombination signal sequences. Here, we show that nuclear extracts of pre-B cell lines carry out this specific cleavage. The products of cleavage are the same as found previously in thymocytes: full-leng

  3. [Developing of a new feeder-free system and characterization of human embryonic stem cell sublines derived in this system under autogenic and allogenic culturing]. (United States)

    Kol'tsova, A M; Voronkina, I V; Gordeeva, O F; Zenin, V V; Lifantseva, N V; Musorina, A S; Smagina, L V; Iakovleva, T K; Polianskaia, G G


    A new feeder-free culture system for human embryonic stem cells (hESC) was developed. It consist of extracellular matrix proteins synthesized by feeder cells--mesenchymal stem cell line SC5-MSC, which was derived from initial hESC line SC5. The major ECM proteins--fibronectin and laminin--that maintain hESC growth in feeder-free system were identified. An essential component of this system is a SC5-MSC-conditioned medium. Two hESC sublines were derived. The subline SC5-FF was cultured in autogenic and subline SC7-FF in allogenic system. Sublines SC5-FF and SC7-FF passed through more than 300 and 115 cell population doublings, retained normal diploid karyotype and an ability of in vitro differentiation into derivates of three germ layers. These sublines express markers of undifferentiated hESC: alkaline phosphatase, Oct-4, SSEA-4, TRA-1-81 and multidrug resistance transporter--ABCG2. The RT-PCR analysis revealed that undifferentiated cells SC5-FF subline, like cells of initial feeder-maintained hESC line SC5, expressed genes OCT4 and NANOG, and germ line specific genes such as DPPA3/STELLA and DAZL. An expression of OCT4, NANOG, DPPA3/STELLA ans DAZL was down-regulated during embryonic bodies differentiation, whereas expression of somatic lineages specific genes like GATA4 and AFP (extra embryonic and embryonic endoderm), PAX6 (neuroectoderm) and BRY (mesoderm) was up-regulated. The comparative analysis of some typical features (karyotype structure, the average population doubling time and the number of undifferentiated cells in populations) did not reveal essential differences between initial SC5 and SC7 lines and their sublines SC5-FF and SC7-FF. This shows that feeder-free culture systems, which are much more stable than any feeder systems, do not break main hESC features during long cultivation and can be recommended for fundamental, biomedicine and pharmacological investigations, using hESCs.

  4. Development of feeder-free culture systems for generation of ckit+sca1+ progenitors from mouse iPS cells. (United States)

    Lin, Jian; Fernandez, Irina; Roy, Krishnendu


    Patient-specific therapeutic cells derived from induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells may bypass the ethical issues associated with embryonic stem (ES) cells and avoid potential immunological reactions associated with allogenic transplantation. It is critical, for the ultimate clinical applicability of iPS cell-derived therapies, to establish feeder-free cultures that ensure efficient differentiation of iPS cells into therapeutic progenitors. It is also necessary to understand if iPS cell-derived progenitors differ from those derived from ES cells. In this study, we compared the efficiency of three different feeder-free cultures for differentiating mouse iPS cells into ckit+sca1+ hematopoietic progenitor cells (HPCs) and compared how differentiation and functionality varies between ES and iPS cells. Our results indicated that both iPS and ES cells can be efficiently differentiated into HPCs in suspension cultures supplemented with secretion factors from mouse bone marrow stromal cells (OP9-DL1 conditioned medium). The functionality of these cells was demonstrated by differentiation into CD11c+ dendritic cells (DCs). Both ES and iPS-derived DCs expressed activation molecules (CD86, CD80) in response to LPS stimulation and stimulated T cell proliferation in a mixed lymphocyte reaction (MLR). Extensive quantitative RT-PCR studies were used to study the differences in gene expression profiles of ckit+sca1+ cells generated from the various culture systems as well as differences between ES-derived and iPS-derived cells. We conclude that a feeder-free system using stromal conditioned medium can efficiently generate HPCs as well as functional DCs from iPS cells and the generated cells have similar gene expression profile as those from ES cells.

  5. Antioxidant role of amyloid β protein in cell-free and biological systems: implication for the pathogenesis of Alzheimer disease. (United States)

    Sinha, Maitrayee; Bhowmick, Pritha; Banerjee, Anindita; Chakrabarti, Sasanka


    In contrast to many studies showing the pro-oxidative nature of amyloid peptide, this work shows that aggregated Aβ42 peptide in varying concentrations (2-20 μM) in cell-free systems inhibits the formation of hydroxyl radicals and H(2)O(2) from a mixture of iron (20 μM FeSO(4)) and ascorbate (2mM) as measured by benzoate hydroxylation assay and coumarin carboxylic acid assay. Aggregated Aβ42 in similar concentrations further prevents protein and lipid oxidation in isolated rat brain mitochondria incubated alone or with FeSO(4) and ascorbate. Moreover, mitochondria exposed to FeSO(4) and ascorbate show enhanced formation of reactive oxygen species and this phenomenon is also abolished by aggregated Aβ42. It is suggested that the antioxidant property of Aβ42 in various systems is mediated by metal chelation and it is nearly as potent as a typical metal chelator, such as diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid, in preventing oxidative damage. However, aggregated Aβ42 causes mitochondrial functional impairment in the form of membrane depolarization and a loss of phosphorylation capacity without involving reactive oxygen species in the process. Thus, the present results suggest that the amyloid peptide exhibits a protective antioxidant role in biological systems, but also has toxic actions independent of oxidative stress.

  6. A cell-free system for studying a priming factor involved in repair of bleomycin-damaged DNA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available A simple cell-free system for studying a priming factor involved in the repair of bleomycin-damaged DNA was established. The template-primer used for the repair DNA synthesis was prepared by treating the closed circular, superhelical form of pUC19 plasmid DNA with 2.2 microM bleomycin and 20 microM ferrous ions. Single-strand breaks were introduced into pUC19 DNA by the bleomycin treatment, and the DNA was consequently converted largely into the open circular form. A system for repair of this bleomycin-damaged DNA was constructed with a priming factor, DNA polymerase (DNA polymerase beta or Klenow fragment of DNA polymerase I, ATP, T4 DNA ligase and four deoxynucleoside triphosphates. After incubation, the conformation of the DNA was analyzed by agarose gel electrophoresis and electron microscopy. The open circular DNA was largely converted to the closed circular DNA, indicating that the single-strand breaks of DNA were repaired. When the priming factor was omitted, DNA repair did not occur. The present system seemed to be applicable to the study of priming factors involved in the repair of DNA with single-strand breaks caused not only by bleomycin but also by ionizing radiation or active oxygen.

  7. A defined, feeder-free, serum-free system to generate in vitro hematopoietic progenitors and differentiated blood cells from hESCs and hiPSCs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giorgia Salvagiotto

    Full Text Available Human ESC and iPSC are an attractive source of cells of high quantity and purity to be used to elucidate early human development processes, for drug discovery, and in clinical cell therapy applications. To efficiently differentiate pluripotent cells into a pure population of hematopoietic progenitors we have developed a new 2-dimensional, defined and highly efficient protocol that avoids the use of feeder cells, serum or embryoid body formation. Here we showed that a single matrix protein in combination with growth factors and a hypoxic environment is sufficient to generate from pluripotent cells hematopoietic progenitors capable of differentiating further in mature cell types of different lineages of the blood system. We tested the differentiation method using hESCs and 9 iPSC lines generated from different tissues. These data indicate the robustness of the protocol providing a valuable tool for the generation of clinical-grade hematopoietic cells from pluripotent cells.

  8. Systemic and Pulmonary Hypertension After Resuscitation with Cell-Free Hemoglobin (United States)


    according to published standards (24). Inorganic phosphate was measured on a blood chemistry analyzer (Cobas-Fara; Roche Diagnostic Systems, Nutley, NJ...alanine aminotransferase (ALT), and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) on the blood chemistry analyzer . The final 4 ml of blood was heparinized, centrifuged...milliliter of blood was placed in 2 ml of ice-cold perchioric acid (70% wt/vol), which was used to determine whole blood lactate in the blood chemistry

  9. Prenylation of a Rab1B mutant with altered GTPase activity is impaired in cell-free systems but not in intact mammalian cells. (United States)

    Wilson, A L; Sheridan, K M; Erdman, R A; Maltese, W A


    Previous studies have reached differing conclusions as to whether or not guanine-nucleotide-dependent conformational changes affect the ability of Rab proteins to undergo post-translational modification by Rab:geranylgeranyltransferase (Rab-GGTase). We now show that the ability of a Rab1B mutant [Q67L (Gln-67-->Leu)] with reduced intrinsic GTPase activity to undergo geranylgeranylation in cell-free assays depends on the guanine nucleotide composition of the system. When GTP is the predominant nucleotide in the assay, Rab1BQ67L is a poor substrate. However, when GDP is present and GTP is omitted, prenylation of the Q67L mutant is comparable with that of the wild-type (WT) protein. These studies, coupled with the poor prenylation of Rab1BWT in the presence of the non-hydrolysable GTP analogue guanosine 5'-[gamma-thio]triphosphate, support the notion that Rab-GGTase prefers substrates in the GDP conformation. When the abilities of Rab1BQ67L and Rab1BWT to undergo prenylation were compared by metabolic labelling of transiently expressed proteins in cultured human 293 cells, we did not observe a decline in prenylation of the mutant protein as predicted on the basis of the cell-free assays. Moreover, the Q67L mutant was comparable with the wild-type Rab1B in its ability to associate with co-expressed Rab GDP dissociation inhibitors in 293 cells. These findings raise the possibility that unidentified proteins present in intact cells may compensate for the reduced intrinsic GTPase activity of the Q67L mutant, allowing a significant proportion of the nascent Rab1BQ67L to assume a GDP conformation. The differential prenylation of Rab1BQ67L in cell-free systems versus intact cells underscores the importance of evaluating the post-translational modification of specific Rab mutants in vivo, where poorly characterized regulatory proteins may have a significant effect on GTPase activity or nucleotide exchange rates.

  10. An immunomodulator from Tinospora cordifolia with antioxidant activity in cell-free systems

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Veena R Desai; J P Kamat; K B Sainis


    Several plant products are known to exhibit immense medicinal value against human diseases. Our earlier studies showed that dry stem crude extract (DSCE) of Tinospora cordifolia contained a polyclonal B cell mitogen, G1-4A. DSCE as well as G1-4A also enhanced immune response in mice. In order to explore the possibility of using G1-4A/PPI (partially purified immunomodulator) to modulate radiation induced immunosuppression, the antioxidant effect of PPI from this plant was examined against reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS/RNS), generated by photosensitization/peroxynitrite. Levels of lipid peroxidation products, superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase in liver/spleen homogenate from mouse were monitored. Photosensitization induced significant increase in thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) in liver. The activities of SOD and catalase were reduced considerably. PPI, present during photosensitisation, prevented lipid peroxidation and restored the activities of both the enzymes. Likewise, oxidative damage induced by peroxynitrite was inhibited by PPI. The degradation of proteins due to photosensitization as assessed by SDS-PAGE was effectively reduced by simultaneous treatment with PPI during photosensitization. Selective inhibitors of ROS like mannitol, SOD, sodium azide and antioxidants, GSH and vitamin C brought about significant inhibition of formation of TBARS suggesting possible involvement of O$_2^{-\\bullet}$,${}^{\\bullet}$OH and 1O2. Photosensitization in deuterated buffer enhanced formation of TBARS thus indicating generation of 1O2. Thus, the action of PPI may be against oxidative damage through Type I and II photosensitization mechanisms. Therefore, the immunomodulator from Tinospora cordifolia may also be beneficial as an antioxidant.

  11. Immunoscreening of Plasmodium falciparum proteins expressed in a wheat germ cell-free system reveals a novel malaria vaccine candidate (United States)

    Morita, Masayuki; Takashima, Eizo; Ito, Daisuke; Miura, Kazutoyo; Thongkukiatkul, Amporn; Diouf, Ababacar; Fairhurst, Rick M.; Diakite, Mahamadou; Long, Carole A.; Torii, Motomi; Tsuboi, Takafumi


    The number of malaria vaccine candidates in preclinical and clinical development is limited. To identify novel blood-stage malaria vaccine candidates, we constructed a library of 1,827P. falciparum proteins prepared using the wheat germ cell-free system (WGCFS). Also, a high-throughput AlphaScreen procedure was developed to measure antibody reactivity to the recombinant products. Purified IgGs from residents in malaria endemic areas have shown functional activity against blood-stage parasites as judged by an in vitro parasite Growth Inhibition Assay (GIA). Therefore, we evaluated the GIA activity of 51 plasma samples prepared from Malian adults living in a malaria endemic area against the WGCFS library. Using the AlphaScreen-based immunoreactivity measurements, antibody reactivity against 3 proteins was positively associated with GIA activity. Since anti-LSA3-C responses showed the strongest correlation with GIA activity, this protein was investigated further. Anti-LSA3-C-specific antibody purified from Malian adult plasmas showed GIA activity, and expression of LSA3 in blood-stage parasites was confirmed by western blotting. Taken together, we identified LSA3 as a novel blood-stage vaccine candidate, and we propose that this system will be useful for future vaccine candidate discovery. PMID:28378857

  12. Roll-coating fabrication of flexible organic solar cells: comparison of fullerene and fullerene-free systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liu, Kuan; Larsen-Olsen, Thue Trofod; Lin, Yuze;


    Flexible organic solar cells (OSCs) based on a blend of low-bandgap polymer donor PTB7-TH and nonfullerene small molecule acceptor IEIC were fabricated via a roll-coating process under ambient atmosphere. Both an indium tin oxide (ITO)-free substrate and a flexible ITO substrate were employed...

  13. Bioethanol production from starchy biomass by direct fermentation using saccharomyces diastaticus in batch free and immobilized cell systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kilonzo, P.M.; Margaritis, A. [University of Western Ontario, London, ON (Canada). Dept. of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering; Yu, J.; Ye, Q. [East China Univ. of Science and Technology, Shanghai (China). Biochemical Engineering Research Inst. and State Key Lab


    The feasibility of using amylolytic yeasts for the direct fermentation of starchy biomass to ethanol was discussed. Although amylolytic yeasts such as Saccharomycopsis, Lipomyces, and Schwaniomyces secrete both {alpha}-amylase and glucoamylase enzymes that synergistically enhance starch degradation, they are not suitable for industrial bio-ethanol production because of low tolerance for ethanol and slow fermentation rate. For that reason, this study examined the direct ethanol fermentation of soluble starch or dextrin with the amylolytic yeast Saccharomyces diastaticus in batch free and immobilized cells systems. Saccharomyces diastaticus secretes glucoamylase and can therefore assimilate and ferment starch and starch-like biomass. The main focus of the study was on parameters leading to higher ethanol yields from high concentration of dextrin and soluble starch using batch cultures. A natural attachment method was proposed in which polyurethane foam sheets were used as the carrier for amylolytic yeasts immobilization in ethanol fermentations. The support was chosen because it was inexpensive, autoclavable, pliable and could be tailored to suit process requirements regarding net surface charge, shape and size. It was found that Saccharomyces diastaticus was very efficient in terms of fermentation of high initial concentrations of dextrin or soluble starch. Higher concentrations of ethanol were produced. In batch fermentations, the cells fermented high dextrin concentrations more efficiently. In particular, in batch fermentation, more than 92 g-L of ethanol was produced from 240 g-L of dextrin, at conversion efficiency of 90 per cent. The conversion efficiency decreased to 60 per cent but a higher final ethanol concentration of 147 g/L was attained with a medium containing 500 g/L of dextrin. In an immobilized cell bioreactor, Saccharomyces diastaticus produced 83 g/L of ethanol from 240 g/L of dextrin, corresponding to ethanol volumetric productivity of 9.1 g

  14. A novel feeder-free culture system for human pluripotent stem cell culture and induced pluripotent stem cell derivation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanna Vuoristo

    Full Text Available Correct interactions with extracellular matrix are essential to human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC to maintain their pluripotent self-renewal capacity during in vitro culture. hPSCs secrete laminin 511/521, one of the most important functional basement membrane components, and they can be maintained on human laminin 511 and 521 in defined culture conditions. However, large-scale production of purified or recombinant laminin 511 and 521 is difficult and expensive. Here we have tested whether a commonly available human choriocarcinoma cell line, JAR, which produces high quantities of laminins, supports the growth of undifferentiated hPSCs. We were able to maintain several human pluripotent stem cell lines on decellularized matrix produced by JAR cells using a defined culture medium. The JAR matrix also supported targeted differentiation of the cells into neuronal and hepatic directions. Importantly, we were able to derive new human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC lines on JAR matrix and show that adhesion of the early hiPSC colonies to JAR matrix is more efficient than to matrigel. In summary, JAR matrix provides a cost-effective and easy-to-prepare alternative for human pluripotent stem cell culture and differentiation. In addition, this matrix is ideal for the efficient generation of new hiPSC lines.

  15. Use of a cell-free system to determine UDP-N-acetylglucosamine 2-epimerase and N-acetylmannosamine kinase activities in human hereditary inclusion body myopathy. (United States)

    Sparks, Susan E; Ciccone, Carla; Lalor, Molly; Orvisky, Eduard; Klootwijk, Riko; Savelkoul, Paul J; Dalakas, Marinos C; Krasnewich, Donna M; Gahl, William A; Huizing, Marjan


    Hereditary inclusion body myopathy (HIBM) is an autosomal recessive neuromuscular disorder associated with mutations in uridine diphosphate (UDP)-N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc) 2-epimerase (GNE)/N-acetylmannosamine (ManNAc) kinase (MNK), the bifunctional and rate-limiting enzyme of sialic acid biosynthesis. We developed individual GNE and MNK enzymatic assays and determined reduced activities in cultured fibroblasts of patients, with HIBM harboring missense mutations in either or both the GNE and MNK enzymatic domains. To assess the effects of individual mutations on enzyme activity, normal and mutated GNE/MNK enzymatic domains were synthesized in a cell-free in vitro transcription-translation system and subjected to the GNE and MNK enzymatic assays. This cell-free system was validated for both GNE and MNK activities, and it revealed that mutations in one enzymatic domain (in GNE, G135V, V216A, and R246W; in MNK, A631V, M712T) affected not only that domain's enzyme activity, but also the activity of the other domain. Moreover, studies of the residual enzyme activity associated with specific mutations revealed a discrepancy between the fibroblasts and the cell-free systems. Fibroblasts exhibited higher residual activities of both GNE and MNK than the cell-free system. These findings add complexity to the tightly regulated system of sialic acid biosynthesis. This cell-free approach can be applied to other glycosylation pathway enzymes that are difficult to evaluate in whole cells because their substrate specificities overlap with those of ancillary enzymes.

  16. Structural and physico-mechanical characterization of bio-cellulose produced by a cell-free system. (United States)

    Ullah, Muhammad Wajid; Ul-Islam, Mazhar; Khan, Shaukat; Kim, Yeji; Park, Joong Kon


    This study was aimed to characterize the structural and physico-mechanical properties of bio-cellulose produced through cell-free system. Fourier transform-infrared spectrum illustrated exact matching of structural peaks with microbial cellulose, used as reference. Field-emission scanning electron microscopy revealed that fibrils of bio-cellulose were thicker and more compact than microbial cellulose. The specific positions of peaks in the X-ray diffraction and nuclear magnetic resonance spectra indicated that bio-cellulose possessed cellulose II polymorphic structure. Bio-cellulose presented superior physico-mechanical properties than microbial cellulose. The water holding capacity of bio-cellulose and microbial cellulose were found to be 188.6 ± 5.41 and 167.4 ± 4.32 times their dry-weights, respectively. Tensile strengths and degradation temperature of bio-cellulose were 17.63 MPa and 352 °C, respectively compared to 14.71 MPa and 327 °C of microbial cellulose. Overall, the results indicated successful synthesis and superior properties of bio-cellulose that advocate its effectiveness for various applications.

  17. A second rhodopsin-like protein in Cyanophora paradoxa: gene sequence and protein expression in a cell-free system. (United States)

    Frassanito, Anna Maria; Barsanti, Laura; Passarelli, Vincenzo; Evangelista, Valtere; Gualtieri, Paolo


    Here we report the identification and expression of a second rhodopsin-like protein in the alga Cyanophora paradoxa (Glaucophyta), named Cyanophopsin_2. This new protein was identified due to a serendipity event, since the RACE reaction performed to complete the sequence of Cyanophopsin_1, (the first rhodopsin-like protein of C. paradoxa identified in 2009 by our group), amplified a 619 bp sequence corresponding to a portion of a new gene of the same protein family. The full sequence consists of 1175 bp consisting of 849 bp coding DNA sequence and 4 introns of 326 bp. The protein is characterized by an N-terminal region of 47 amino acids, followed by a region with 7 α-helices of 213 amino acids and a C-terminal region of 22 amino acids. This protein showed high identity with Cyanophopsin_1 and other rhodopsin-like proteins of Archea, Bacteria, Fungi and Algae. Cyanophosin_2 (CpR2) was expressed in a cell-free expression system, and characterized by means of absorption spectroscopy.

  18. Cell-free Protein Synthesis in an Autoinduction System for NMR Studies of Protein-Protein Interactions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ozawa, Kiyoshi; Jergic, Slobodan; Crowther, Jeffrey A.; Thompson, Phillip R. [Australian National University, Research School of Chemistry (Australia); Wijffels, Gene [Queensland Bioscience Precinct, CSIRO Livestock Industries (Australia); Otting, Gottfried; Dixon, Nicholas A. [Australian National University, Research School of Chemistry (Australia)], E-mail:


    Cell-free protein synthesis systems provide facile access to proteins in a nascent state that enables formation of soluble, native protein-protein complexes even if one of the protein components is prone to self-aggregation and precipitation. Combined with selective isotope-labeling, this allows the rapid analysis of protein-protein interactions with few {sup 15}N-HSQC spectra. The concept is demonstrated with binary and ternary complexes between the {chi}, {psi} and {gamma} subunits of Escherichia coli DNA polymerase III: nascent, selectively {sup 15}N-labeled {psi} produced in the presence of {chi} resulted in a soluble, correctly folded {chi}-{psi} complex, whereas {psi} alone precipitated irrespective of whether {gamma} was present or not. The {sup 15}N-HSQC spectra showed that the N-terminal segment of {psi} is mobile in the {chi}-{psi} complex, yet important for its binding to {gamma}. The sample preparation was greatly enhanced by an autoinduction strategy, where the T7 RNA polymerase needed for transcription of a gene in a T7-promoter vector was produced in situ.

  19. Enhanced functional expression of aquaporin Z via fusion of in situ cleavable leader peptides in Escherichia coli cell-free system. (United States)

    Zhang, Xu; Lian, Jiazhang; Kai, Lei; Huang, Lei; Cen, Peilin; Xu, Zhinan


    Aquaporin Z (AqpZ) is a water channel protein from Escherichia coli and has attracted many attentions to develop the biomimetic water filtration technology. Cell-free protein synthesis (CFPS) system, one of the most complex multi-enzymatic systems, has the ability of producing the integral membrane protein in vitro. To enhance the synthesis of AqpZ in E. coli cell-free system, several natural leader peptides were respectively fused at the N-terminus and were verified to enhance the expression level significantly. Moreover, the supplementation of detergents or liposome could activate leader peptidase from the cell-free extract and provide hydrophobic environment for proper folding of AqpZ. Thus, the release of mature AqpZ via the in situ removal of leader peptide was achieved, with a specific water transport activity of (2.1 ± 0.1) × 10⁻¹⁴ cm³ s⁻¹ monomer⁻¹. Using this in situ removable leader peptide strategy, the transcription-translation, leader sequence cleavage and membrane protein folding were integrated into a simple process in the cell-free system, providing a convenient approach to enhance the expression of target proteins, especially those membrane proteins difficult to achieve.

  20. High-throughput synthesis of stable isotope-labeled transmembrane proteins for targeted transmembrane proteomics using a wheat germ cell-free protein synthesis system. (United States)

    Takemori, Nobuaki; Takemori, Ayako; Matsuoka, Kazuhiro; Morishita, Ryo; Matsushita, Natsuki; Aoshima, Masato; Takeda, Hiroyuki; Sawasaki, Tatsuya; Endo, Yaeta; Higashiyama, Shigeki


    Using a wheat germ cell-free protein synthesis system, we developed a high-throughput method for the synthesis of stable isotope-labeled full-length transmembrane proteins as proteoliposomes to mimic the in vivo environment, and we successfully constructed an internal standard library for targeted transmembrane proteomics by using mass spectrometry.

  1. Bleomycin-induced DNA synthesis in a cell-free system using a permeable mouse sarcoma cell Extract.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available To investigate factors involved in excision repair DNA synthesis, a soluble extract was prepared from permeable mouse sarcoma (SR-C3H/He cells by homogenization and ultracentrifugation. DNA synthesis measured by using native calf thymus DNA as the template-primer and the extract as the polymerase source showed low activity. The DNA synthesis was enhanced more than ten-fold by the addition of an appropriate concentration of bleomycin, a radiomimetic DNA-damaging drug. Using selective inhibitors of DNA polymerases, it was shown that the DNA polymerase involved in the bleomycin-induced DNA synthesis was DNA polymerase beta. In addition to DNA polymerase beta, an exonuclease which converts bleomycin-damaged DNA into suitable template-primers for repair DNA synthesis appeared to be present in the permeable cell extract.

  2. Efficient reprogramming of naive-like induced pluripotent stem cells from porcine adipose-derived stem cells with a feeder-independent and serum-free system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu Zhang

    Full Text Available Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs are somatic cells reprogrammed by ectopic expression of transcription factors or small molecule treatment, which resemble embryonic stem cells (ESCs. They hold great promise for improving the generation of genetically modified large animals. However, few porcine iPSCs (piPSCs lines obtained currently can support development of cloned embryos. Here, we generated iPSCs from porcine adipose-derived stem cells (pADSCs, using drug-inducible expression of defined human factors (Oct4, Sox2, c-Myc and Klf4. Reprogramming of iPSCs from pADSCs was more efficient than from fibroblasts, regardless of using feeder-independent or feeder-dependent manners. By addition of Lif-2i medium containing mouse Lif, CHIR99021 and PD0325901 (Lif-2i, naïve-like piPSCs were obtained under feeder-independent and serum-free conditions. These successfully reprogrammed piPSCs were characterized by short cell cycle intervals, alkaline phosphatase (AP staining, expression of Oct4, Sox2, Nanog, SSEA3 and SSEA4, and normal karyotypes. The resemblance of piPSCs to naïve ESCs was confirmed by their packed dome morphology, growth after single-cell dissociation, Lif-dependency, up-regulation of Stella and Eras, low expression levels of TRA-1-60, TRA-1-81 and MHC I and activation of both X chromosomes. Full reprogramming of naïve-like piPSCs was evaluated by the significant up-regulation of Lin28, Esrrb, Utf1 and Dppa5, differentiating into cell types of all three germ layers in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, nuclear transfer embryos from naïve-like piPSCs could develop to blastocysts with improved quality. Thus, we provided an efficient protocol for generating naïve-like piPSCs from pADSCs in a feeder-independent and serum-free system with controlled regulation of exogenous genes, which may facilitate optimization of culture media and the production of transgenic pigs.

  3. Functional expression of a single-chain antibody to ErbB-2 in plants and cell-free systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benevolo Maria


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Aberrant signaling by ErbB-2 (HER 2, Neu, a member of the human Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF receptor family, is associated with an aggressive clinical behaviour of carcinomas, particularly breast tumors. Antibodies targeting the ErbB-2 pathway are a preferred therapeutic option for patients with advanced breast cancer, but a worldwide deficit in the manufacturing capacities of mammalian cell bioreactors is foreseen. Methods Herein, we describe a multi-platform approach for the production of recombinant Single chain Fragments of antibody variable regions (ScFvs to ErbB-2 that involves their functional expression in (a bacteria, (b transient as well as stable transgenic tobacco plants, and (c a newly developed cell-free transcription-translation system. Results An ScFv (ScFv800E6 was selected by cloning immunoglobulin sequences from murine hybridomas, and was expressed and fully functional in all the expression platforms, thereby representing the first ScFv to ErbB-2 produced in hosts other than bacteria and yeast. ScFv800E6 was optimized with respect to redox synthesis conditions. Different tags were introduced flanking the ScFv800E6 backbone, with and without spacer arms, including a novel Strep II tag that outperforms conventional streptavidin-based detection systems. ScFv800E6 was resistant to standard chemical radiolabeling procedures (i.e. Chloramine T, displayed a binding ability extremely similar to that of the parental monovalent Fab' fragment, as well as a flow cytometry performance and an equilibrium binding affinity (Ka approximately 2 × 108 M-1 only slightly lower than those of the parental bivalent antibody, suggesting that its binding site is conserved as compared to that of the parental antibody molecule. ScFv800E6 was found to be compatible with routine reagents for immunohistochemical staining. Conclusion ScFv800E6 is a useful reagent for in vitro biochemical and immunodiagnostic applications in oncology

  4. Highly Efficient In Vitro Production of Bovine Blastocyst in Cell-Free Sequential Synthetic Oviductal Fluid vs. TCM199 Vero Cell Co-Culture System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sayyed Morteza Hosseini


    Full Text Available Background: The aim of this study was to establish a cell-free sequential culture system that cansupport high levels of in vitro embryo development and blastocyst formation from bovine zygotes.To this end, this investigation was carried out to evaluate the effects of glucose, serum and EDTAon bovine zygote in vitro development.Materials and Methods: Bovine presumptive zygotes were derived from oocytes matured, andfertilized in vitro and cultured in synthetic oviductal fluid sequential medium in a two-steps manner;SOF 1 for the first 3 days and SOF 2 for the second 5-6 days of in vitro embryo development. Inorder to evaluate the effect of different modifications of the basic medium on embryo development,glucose was added to the second phase (SOF A, serum was added to the first phase (SOF C andEDTA alone (SOF D or in combination with serum (SOF E was added into the first phase of invitro embryo culture. The results of each composition were compared with each other and with theresults of embryo development in TCM199 vero cell co-culture system.Results: Glucose addition to the second phase of embryo culture, improved the developmentalcompetency; however, the differences were not significant. Serum addition to the first phase ofembryo culture, significantly improved the developmental competency of embryos beyond thecleavage stage, compared to all the treatment and TCM199 co-culture groups. EDTA supplementationof culture medium, either alone or in combination with serum, significantly inhibits the embryodevelopment beyond the morula stage.Conclusion: The results indicated that culture of bovine presumptive zygotes in two steps cell-freeculture system, can support embryo development, and addition of serum throughout the culture andglucose to the second step significantly increased overall developmental competency compared toTCM199 co-culture system.

  5. An amino acid depleted cell-free protein synthesis system for the incorporation of non-canonical amino acid analogs into proteins. (United States)

    Singh-Blom, Amrita; Hughes, Randall A; Ellington, Andrew D


    Residue-specific incorporation of non-canonical amino acids into proteins is usually performed in vivo using amino acid auxotrophic strains and replacing the natural amino acid with an unnatural amino acid analog. Herein, we present an efficient amino acid depleted cell-free protein synthesis system that can be used to study residue-specific replacement of a natural amino acid by an unnatural amino acid analog. This system combines a simple methodology and high protein expression titers with a high-efficiency analog substitution into a target protein. To demonstrate the productivity and efficacy of a cell-free synthesis system for residue-specific incorporation of unnatural amino acids in vitro, we use this system to show that 5-fluorotryptophan and 6-fluorotryptophan substituted streptavidin retain the ability to bind biotin despite protein-wide replacement of a natural amino acid for the amino acid analog. We envisage this amino acid depleted cell-free synthesis system being an economical and convenient format for the high-throughput screening of a myriad of amino acid analogs with a variety of protein targets for the study and functional characterization of proteins substituted with unnatural amino acids when compared to the currently employed in vivo methodologies.

  6. Four-base codon-mediated incorporation of non-natural amino acids into proteins in a eukaryotic cell-free translation system. (United States)

    Taira, Hikaru; Fukushima, Masaharu; Hohsaka, Takahiro; Sisido, Masahiko


    Various four-base codons have been shown to work for the introduction of non-natural amino acids into proteins in an Escherichia coli cell-free translation system. Here, a four-base codon-mediated non-natural mutagenesis was applied to a eukaryotic rabbit reticulocyte cell-free translation system. Mutated streptavidin mRNAs containing four-base codons were prepared and added to a rabbit reticulocyte lysate in the presence of tRNAs that were aminoacylated with a non-natural amino acid and had the corresponding four-base anticodons. A Western blot analysis of translation products indicated that the four-base codons CGGU, CGCU, CCCU, CUCU, CUAU, and GGGU were efficiently decoded by the aminoacyl-tRNAs having the corresponding four-base anticodons. In contrast, the four-base codons AGGU, AGAU, CGAU, UUGU, UCGU, and ACGU were not decoded. The stop codon-derived four-base codons UAGU, UAAU, and UGAU were found to be inefficient, whereas the amber codon UAG and opal codon UGA were efficient for the incorporation of non-natural amino acids. The application of the expanded genetic code in a eukaryotic cell-free system opens the possibility of a four-base codon-mediated incorporation of non-natural amino acids into proteins in living eukaryotic cells.

  7. Establishment of Cell Free Conversion System With Biotin-labelled Recombinant PrPsen Expressed in E. Coli

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    Objective To report a protocol using biotin-labelled PrP protein in cell free conversion assay instead of isotope. Methods A hamster PrP protein (HaPrP) was expressed in E. coli and purified with HIS-tag affinity chromatograph. After being labelled with biotin, HaPrP was mixed with PrPSc preparation from scrapie strain 263K. Results Protease-resistant bands were detected after four-day incubation. Conclusion The new conversion model provides a reliable, easily handling, and environment-friendly method for studies of prion and transmissible spongiform encephalopathies.

  8. Derivation, Expansion, and Motor Neuron Differentiation of Human-Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells with Non-Integrating Episomal Vectors and a Defined Xenogeneic-free Culture System. (United States)

    Hu, Wentao; He, Yongpei; Xiong, Yongjie; Lu, Hong; Chen, Hong; Hou, Limin; Qiu, Zhandong; Fang, Yu; Zhang, Suming


    Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) generated from patient-derived somatic cells provides the opportunity for model development in order to study patient-specific disease states with the potential for drug discovery. However, use of lentivirus and exposure of iPSCs to animal-derived products limit their therapeutic utility and affect lineage differentiation and subsequent downstream functionality of iPSC derivatives. Within the context of this study, we describe a simple and practical protocol enabling the efficient reprogramming of terminally differentiated adult fibroblasts into integration-free human iPSCs (hiPSCs) using a combination of episomal plasmids with small molecules (SMs). Using this approach, there was a 10-fold increase in reprogramming efficiency over single plasmid vector-based methods. We obtained approximately 100 iPSCs colonies from 1 × 10(5) human adult dermal fibroblasts (HADFs) and achieved approximately 0.1% reprogramming efficiencies. Concurrently, we developed a highly conducive culture system using xeno-free media and human vitronectin. The resulting hiPSCs were free of DNA integration and had completely lost episomal vectors, maintained long-term self-renewal, featured a normal karyotype, expressed pluripotent stem cell markers, and possessed the capability of differentiating into components of all three germ layers in vivo. Finally, we demonstrate that the integration-free hiPSCs could be differentiated into motor neurons under xeno-free culture conditions. This induction method will promote the derivation of patient-specific integration-free and xeno-free iPSCs and improve the strategy for motor neuron derivation. Our approach provides a useful tool for human disease models, drug screen, and clinical applications.

  9. Micro reactor integrated μ-PEM fuel cell system: a feed connector and flow field free approach (United States)

    Balakrishnan, A.; Mueller, C.; Reinecke, H.


    A system level microreactor concept for hydrogen generation with Sodium Borohydride (NaBH4) is demonstrated. The uniqueness of the system is the transport and distribution feature of fuel (hydrogen) to the anode of the fuel cell without any external feed connectors and flow fields. The approach here is to use palladium film instead of feed connectors and the flow fields; palladium's property to adsorb and desorb the hydrogen at ambient and elevated condition. The proof of concept is demonstrated with a polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) based complete system integration which includes microreactor, palladium transport layer and the self-breathing polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell. The hydrolysis of NaBH4 was carried out in the presence of platinum supported by nickel (NiPt). The prototype functionality is tested with NaBH4 chemical hydride. The characterization of the integrated palladium layer and fuel cell is tested with constant and switching load. The presented integrated fuel cell is observed to have a maximum power output and current of 60 mW and 280 mA respectively.

  10. Cell-free synthetic biology for environmental sensing and remediation. (United States)

    Karig, David K


    The fields of biosensing and bioremediation leverage the phenomenal array of sensing and metabolic capabilities offered by natural microbes. Synthetic biology provides tools for transforming these fields through complex integration of natural and novel biological components to achieve sophisticated sensing, regulation, and metabolic function. However, the majority of synthetic biology efforts are conducted in living cells, and concerns over releasing genetically modified organisms constitute a key barrier to environmental applications. Cell-free protein expression systems offer a path towards leveraging synthetic biology, while preventing the spread of engineered organisms in nature. Recent efforts in the areas of cell-free approaches for sensing, regulation, and metabolic pathway implementation, as well as for preserving and deploying cell-free expression components, embody key steps towards realizing the potential of cell-free systems for environmental sensing and remediation.

  11. Scaling Up ITO-free solar cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Galagan, Yulia; Coenen, Erica W. C.; Zimmermann, Birger


    Indium-tin-oxide-free (ITO-free) polymer solar cells with composite electrodes containing current-collecting grids and a semitransparent poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):polystyrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) conductor are demonstrated. The up-scaling of the length of the solar cell from 1 to 6 cm...... resistances. The performance of ITO-free organic solar cells with different dimensions and different electrode resistances are evaluated for different light intensities. The current generation and electric potential distribution are found to not be uniformly distributed in large-area devices at simulated 1...

  12. Expression, stabilization and purification of membrane proteins via diverse protein synthesis systems and detergents involving cell-free associated with self-assembly peptide surfactants. (United States)

    Zheng, Xuan; Dong, Shuangshuang; Zheng, Jie; Li, Duanhua; Li, Feng; Luo, Zhongli


    G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) are involved in regulating most of physiological actions and metabolism in the bodies, which have become most frequently addressed therapeutic targets for various disorders and diseases. Purified GPCR-based drug discoveries have become routine that approaches to structural study, novel biophysical and biochemical function analyses. However, several bottlenecks that GPCR-directed drugs need to conquer the problems including overexpression, solubilization, and purification as well as stabilization. The breakthroughs are to obtain efficient protein yield and stabilize their functional conformation which are both urgently requiring of effective protein synthesis system methods and optimal surfactants. Cell-free protein synthesis system is superior to the high yields and post-translation modifications, and early signs of self-assembly peptide detergents also emerged to superiority in purification of membrane proteins. We herein focus several predominant protein synthesis systems and surfactants involving the novel peptide detergents, and uncover the advantages of cell-free protein synthesis system with self-assembling peptide detergents in purification of functional GPCRs. This review is useful to further study in membrane proteins as well as the new drug exploration.

  13. π-Conjugated Donor-Acceptor Systems as Metal-Free Sensitizers for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cell Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zakeeruddin S. M.


    Full Text Available High extinction coefficients and easily tunable spectral properties of π- conjugated donor-acceptor dyes are of superior advantage for the design of new metalfree organic sensitizers for applications in dye-sensitized solar cells. Ultrafast transient absorption spectroscopy on the femtosecond and nanosecond time scales provided deep insights into the dependence of charge carrier dynamics in fully organic dye/TiO2 systems on i the donor-acceptor distance, ii the π-conjugation length, and iii the coupling to TiO2 by different anchoring groups. Importantly, the observed differences in charge transfer dynamics justify the variations of photovoltaic performances of the dyes as applied in solar cell devices. This leads to the conclusion that the photoconversion efficiencies strongly depend on a delicate interplay between the dyes’ building blocks, i.e. the donor, the π-conjugated spacer and the anchor/acceptor moieties, and may easily be tuned by molecular design.

  14. The emerging age of cell-free synthetic biology. (United States)

    Smith, Mark Thomas; Wilding, Kristen M; Hunt, Jeremy M; Bennett, Anthony M; Bundy, Bradley C


    The engineering of and mastery over biological parts has catalyzed the emergence of synthetic biology. This field has grown exponentially in the past decade. As increasingly more applications of synthetic biology are pursued, more challenges are encountered, such as delivering genetic material into cells and optimizing genetic circuits in vivo. An in vitro or cell-free approach to synthetic biology simplifies and avoids many of the pitfalls of in vivo synthetic biology. In this review, we describe some of the innate features that make cell-free systems compelling platforms for synthetic biology and discuss emerging improvements of cell-free technologies. We also select and highlight recent and emerging applications of cell-free synthetic biology.

  15. Label-Free Biosensors for Cell Biology

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    Ye Fang


    Full Text Available Label-free biosensors for studying cell biology have finally come of age. Recent developments have advanced the biosensors from low throughput and high maintenance research tools to high throughput and low maintenance screening platforms. In parallel, the biosensors have evolved from an analytical tool solely for molecular interaction analysis to powerful platforms for studying cell biology at the whole cell level. This paper presents historical development, detection principles, and applications in cell biology of label-free biosensors. Future perspectives are also discussed.

  16. Nod2-Nodosome in a Cell-Free System: Implications in Pathogenesis and Drug Discovery for Blau Syndrome and Early-Onset Sarcoidosis

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    Tomoyuki Iwasaki


    Full Text Available Nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-containing protein (Nod 2 is an intracellular pattern recognition receptor, which recognizes muramyl dipeptide (N-Acetylmuramyl-L-Alanyl-D-Isoglutamine: MDP, a bacterial peptidoglycan component, and makes a NF-κB-activating complex called nodosome with adaptor protein RICK (RIP2/RIPK2. Nod2 mutants are associated with the autoinflammatory diseases, Blau syndrome (BS/early-onset sarcoidosis (EOS. For drug discovery of BS/EOS, we tried to develop Nod2-nodosome in a cell-free system. FLAG-tagged RICK, biotinylated-Nod2, and BS/EOS-associated Nod2 mutants were synthesized, and proximity signals between FLAG-tagged and biotinylated proteins were detected by amplified luminescent proximity homogeneous assay (ALPHA. Upon incubation with MDP, the ALPHA signal of interaction between Nod2-WT and RICK was increased in a dose-dependent manner. The ALPHA signal of interaction between RICK and the BS/EOS-associated Nod2 mutants was more significantly increased than Nod2-WT. Notably, the ALPHA signal between Nod2-WT and RICK was increased upon incubation with MDP, but not when incubated with the same concentrations, L-alanine, D-isoglutamic acid, or the MDP-D-isoform. Thus, we successfully developed Nod2-nodosome in a cell-free system reflecting its function in vivo, and it can be useful for screening Nod2-nodosome-targeted therapeutic molecules for BS/EOS and granulomatous inflammatory diseases.

  17. Expression, Purification, and Characterization of a Sucrose Nonfermenting 1-Related Protein Kinases 2 of Arabidopsis thaliana in E. coli-Based Cell-Free System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xu Zhang


    Full Text Available The plant-specific sucrose nonfermenting 1-related protein kinase 2 (SnRK2 family is considered an important regulator of plant responses to abiotic stresses such as drought, cold, salinity, and nutrition deficiency. However, little information is available on how SnRK2s regulate sulfur deprivation responses in Arabidopsis. Large-scale production of SnRK2 kinases in vitro can help to elucidate the biochemical properties and physiological functions of this protein family. However, heterogenous expression of SnRK2s usually leads to inactive proteins. In this study, we expressed a recombinant Arabidopsis SnRK2.1 in a modified E. coli cell-free system, which combined two kinds of extracts allowing for a convenient and affordable protein preparation. The recombinant SnRK2.1 was produced in large-scale and the autophosphorylation activity of purified SnRK2.1 was characterized, allowing for further biochemical and substrate binding analysis in sulfur signaling. The application of this improved E. coli cell-free system provides us a promising and convenient platform to enhance expression of the target proteins economically.

  18. Maintaining Wolbachia in Cell-free Medium


    Gamston, Courtney; Rasgon, Jason


    In this video protocol, procedures are demonstrated to (1) purify Wolbachia symbionts out of cultured mosquito cells, (2) use a fluorescent assay to ascertain the viability of the purified Wolbachia and (3) maintain the now extracellular Wolbachia in cell-free medium. Purified Wolbachia remain alive in the extracellular phase but do not replicate until re-inoculated into eukaryotic cells. Extracellular Wolbachia purified in this manner will remain viable for at least a week at ...

  19. Comparison between the cultures of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) on feeder-and serum-free system (Matrigel matrix), MEF and HDF feeder cell lines. (United States)

    Ghasemi-Dehkordi, Payam; Allahbakhshian-Farsani, Mehdi; Abdian, Narges; Mirzaeian, Amin; Saffari-Chaleshtori, Javad; Heybati, Fatemeh; Mardani, Gashtasb; Karimi-Taghanaki, Alireza; Doosti, Abbas; Jami, Mohammad-Saeid; Abolhasani, Marziyeh; Hashemzadeh-Chaleshtori, Morteza


    Human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) are a type of pluripotent stem cells artificially derived from an adult somatic cell (typically human fibroblast) by forced expression of specific genes. In recent years, different feeders like inactivated mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs), human dermal fibroblasts (HDFs), and feeder free system have commonly been used for supporting the culture of stem cells in undifferentiated state. In the present work, the culture of hiPSCs and their characterizations on BD Matrigel (feeder-and serum-free system), MEF and HDF feeders using cell culture methods and molecular techniques were evaluated and compared. The isolated HDFs from foreskin samples were reprogrammed to hiPSCs using gene delivery system. Then, the pluripotency ability of hiPSCs cultured on each layer was determined by teratoma formation and immunohistochemical staining. After EBs generation the expression level of three germ layers genes were evaluated by Q-real-time PCR. Also, the cytogenetic stability of hiPSCs cultured on each condition was analyzed by karyotyping and comet assay. Then, the presence of pluripotency antigens were confirmed by Immunocytochemistry (ICC) test and alkaline phosphatase staining. This study were showed culturing of hiPSCs on BD Matrigel, MEF and HDF feeders had normal morphology and could maintain in undifferentiated state for prolonged expansion. The hiPSCs cultured in each system had normal karyotype without any chromosomal abnormalities and the DNA lesions were not observed by comet assay. Moreover, up-regulation in three germ layers genes in cultured hiPSCs on each layer (same to ESCs) compare to normal HDFs were observed (p stem cells culturing especially hiPSCs both MEF and HDF feeders as well as feeder free system like Matrigel are proper despite benefits and disadvantages. Although, MEFs is suitable for supporting of stem cell culturing but it can animal pathogens transferring and inducing immune response. Furthermore

  20. Branched DNA-based Alu quantitative assay for cell-free plasma DNA levels in patients with sepsis or systemic inflammatory response syndrome. (United States)

    Hou, Yan-Qiang; Liang, Dong-Yu; Lou, Xiao-Li; Zhang, Mei; Zhang, Zhen-huan; Zhang, Lu-rong


    Cell-free circulating DNA (cf-DNA) can be detected by various of laboratory techniques. We described a branched DNA-based Alu assay for measuring cf-DNA in septic patients. Compared to healthy controls and systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) patients, serum cf-DNA levels were significantly higher in septic patients (1426.54 ± 863.79 vs 692.02 ± 703.06 and 69.66 ± 24.66 ng/mL). The areas under the receiver operating characteristic curve of cf-DNA for normal vs sepsis and SIRS vs sepsis were 0.955 (0.884-1.025), and 0.856 (0.749-0.929), respectively. There was a positive correlation between cf-DNA and interleukin 6 or procalcitonin or Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II. The cf-DNA concentration was higher in intensive care unit nonsurviving patients compared to surviving patients (2183.33 ± 615.26 vs 972.46 ± 648.36 ng/mL; P DNA-based Alu assays are feasible and useful to quantify serum cf-DNA levels. Increased cf-DNA levels in septic patients might complement C-reactive protein and procalcitonin in a multiple marker format. Cell-free circulating DNA might be a new marker in discrimination of sepsis and SIRS.

  1. Do glial cells exist in the nervous system of parasitic and free-living flatworms? An ultrastructural and immunocytochemical investigation. (United States)

    Biserova, Natalia M


    It is still unclear whether flatworms have specialized glial cells. At present there are no special methods available for the identification of glial cells in flatworms. The aim of this research was to carry out detailed investigations of the CNS in two species ofcestodes, and to get an idea whether these cells may fit into the concept of glia. Three types of glial cells have been found in Grillotia erinaceus: (1) fibroblast-like cells in the cerebral ganglion (CG); (2) glial cells in bulbar nerves with filaments and laminar cytoplasm; (3) a 3rd type of cells forms multilayer envelopes in the main cords (MC); also they make contacts with the excretory epithelium. To demonstrate the existence of glial cells, an immunocytochemical and ultrastructural investigation of Ligula intestinalis was undertaken. Intensive S100b-like immunoreaction (IR) was found in the GG and in the MC. IR-varicosities were mostly located asymmetrically on the MC, and no IR was found in neuropiles. Small glial cells were found on the surface of the MC; they have oval nuclei and dense cytoplasm with slim processes going around the neuropile and enclosing neurons. Long junctions are seen between cell processes but with neurons they usually possess juxtaposition contacts. Glial cells lack vesicles or synapse-like structures. Intensive S100b-like-IR has been shown in the CNS of cestodes for the first time. Results from ultrastructural research support the immunocytochemical date.

  2. Deep Learning in Label-free Cell Classification. (United States)

    Chen, Claire Lifan; Mahjoubfar, Ata; Tai, Li-Chia; Blaby, Ian K; Huang, Allen; Niazi, Kayvan Reza; Jalali, Bahram


    Label-free cell analysis is essential to personalized genomics, cancer diagnostics, and drug development as it avoids adverse effects of staining reagents on cellular viability and cell signaling. However, currently available label-free cell assays mostly rely only on a single feature and lack sufficient differentiation. Also, the sample size analyzed by these assays is limited due to their low throughput. Here, we integrate feature extraction and deep learning with high-throughput quantitative imaging enabled by photonic time stretch, achieving record high accuracy in label-free cell classification. Our system captures quantitative optical phase and intensity images and extracts multiple biophysical features of individual cells. These biophysical measurements form a hyperdimensional feature space in which supervised learning is performed for cell classification. We compare various learning algorithms including artificial neural network, support vector machine, logistic regression, and a novel deep learning pipeline, which adopts global optimization of receiver operating characteristics. As a validation of the enhanced sensitivity and specificity of our system, we show classification of white blood T-cells against colon cancer cells, as well as lipid accumulating algal strains for biofuel production. This system opens up a new path to data-driven phenotypic diagnosis and better understanding of the heterogeneous gene expressions in cells.

  3. Deep Learning in Label-free Cell Classification (United States)

    Chen, Claire Lifan; Mahjoubfar, Ata; Tai, Li-Chia; Blaby, Ian K.; Huang, Allen; Niazi, Kayvan Reza; Jalali, Bahram


    Label-free cell analysis is essential to personalized genomics, cancer diagnostics, and drug development as it avoids adverse effects of staining reagents on cellular viability and cell signaling. However, currently available label-free cell assays mostly rely only on a single feature and lack sufficient differentiation. Also, the sample size analyzed by these assays is limited due to their low throughput. Here, we integrate feature extraction and deep learning with high-throughput quantitative imaging enabled by photonic time stretch, achieving record high accuracy in label-free cell classification. Our system captures quantitative optical phase and intensity images and extracts multiple biophysical features of individual cells. These biophysical measurements form a hyperdimensional feature space in which supervised learning is performed for cell classification. We compare various learning algorithms including artificial neural network, support vector machine, logistic regression, and a novel deep learning pipeline, which adopts global optimization of receiver operating characteristics. As a validation of the enhanced sensitivity and specificity of our system, we show classification of white blood T-cells against colon cancer cells, as well as lipid accumulating algal strains for biofuel production. This system opens up a new path to data-driven phenotypic diagnosis and better understanding of the heterogeneous gene expressions in cells.

  4. Properties of the ribonucleic acid bacteriophage ZIK-1 coat protein and its synthesis in an Escherichia coli cell-free system. (United States)

    Robinson, J W


    The coat protein subunit of the RNA bacteriophage ZIK/1 has a molecular weight of 12100 and does not contain histidine, methionine and cysteine. The amino acid composition of the coat protein is different from that of other RNA bacteriophage coat proteins. Bacteriophage ZIK/1 belongs to a class of RNA bacteriophages distinct from the f2 type, which lack histidine in their coat proteins, and the Qbeta type, which lack histidine and methionine. Bacteriophage ZIK/1 RNA is an efficient template in the Escherichia coli cell-free system producing coat protein as the major product and a number of non-coat proteins. This result is similar to that obtained with RNA from f2-type bacteriophages. It is probable that the genomes of RNA bacteriophages are structurally similar and that differences between the types of RNA bacteriophage arise from minor differences in RNA sequence.

  5. Linear DNA for rapid prototyping of synthetic biological circuits in an Escherichia coli based TX-TL cell-free system. (United States)

    Sun, Zachary Z; Yeung, Enoch; Hayes, Clarmyra A; Noireaux, Vincent; Murray, Richard M


    Accelerating the pace of synthetic biology experiments requires new approaches for rapid prototyping of circuits from individual DNA regulatory elements. However, current testing standards require days to weeks due to cloning and in vivo transformation. In this work, we first characterized methods to protect linear DNA strands from exonuclease degradation in an Escherichia coli based transcription-translation cell-free system (TX-TL), as well as mechanisms of degradation. This enabled the use of linear DNA PCR products in TX-TL. We then compared expression levels and binding dynamics of different promoters on linear DNA and plasmid DNA. We also demonstrated assembly technology to rapidly build circuits entirely in vitro from separate parts. Using this strategy, we prototyped a four component genetic switch in under 8 h entirely in vitro. Rapid in vitro assembly has future applications for prototyping multiple component circuits if combined with predictive computational models.

  6. Xeno-free culture of human pluripotent stem cells. (United States)

    Bergström, Rosita; Ström, Susanne; Holm, Frida; Feki, Anis; Hovatta, Outi


    Stem cell culture systems that rely on undefined animal-derived components introduce variability to the cultures and complicate their therapeutic use. The derivation of human embryonic stem cells and the development of methods to produce induced pluripotent stem cells combined with their potential to treat human diseases have accelerated the drive to develop xenogenic-free, chemically defined culture systems that support pluripotent self-renewal and directed differentiation. In this chapter, we describe four xeno-free culture systems that have been successful in supporting undifferentiated growth of hPSCs as well as methods for xeno-free subculture and cryopreservation of hPSCs. Each culture system consists of a xeno-free growth medium and xeno-free substratum: (1) TeSR2™ with human recombinant laminin (LN-511); (2) NutriStem™ with LN-511; (3) RegES™ with human foreskin fibroblasts (hFFs); (4) KO-SR Xeno-Free™/GF cocktail with CELLstart™ matrix.

  7. Ligand-responsive upregulation of 3' CITE-mediated translation in a wheat germ cell-free expression system. (United States)

    Ogawa, Atsushi; Murashige, Yuta; Tabuchi, Junichiro; Omatsu, Taiki


    We have rationally constructed a novel regulation-type of artificial riboswitch that ligand-dose dependently upregulates translation initiation mediated by a 3' cap-independent translation element (3' CITE) with no major hybridization switches in a plant expression system (wheat germ extract).

  8. Cell-Free Synthesis Meets Antibody Production: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marlitt Stech


    Full Text Available Engineered antibodies are key players in therapy, diagnostics and research. In addition to full size immunoglobulin gamma (IgG molecules, smaller formats of recombinant antibodies, such as single-chain variable fragments (scFv and antigen binding fragments (Fab, have emerged as promising alternatives since they possess different advantageous properties. Cell-based production technologies of antibodies and antibody fragments are well-established, allowing researchers to design and manufacture highly specific molecular recognition tools. However, as these technologies are accompanied by the drawbacks of being rather time-consuming and cost-intensive, efficient and powerful cell-free protein synthesis systems have been developed over the last decade as alternatives. So far, prokaryotic cell-free systems have been the focus of interest. Recently, eukaryotic in vitro translation systems have enriched the antibody production pipeline, as these systems are able to mimic the natural pathway of antibody synthesis in eukaryotic cells. This review aims to overview and summarize the advances made in the production of antibodies and antibody fragments in cell-free systems.

  9. Wheat germ cell-free system-based production of hemagglutinin-neuraminidase protein of human parainfluenza virus type 3: generation and characterization of monoclonal antibody

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Satoko eMatsunaga


    Full Text Available Human parainfluenza virus 3 (HPIV3 commonly causes respiratory disorders in infants and young children. Monoclonal antibodies (MAbs have been produced to several components of HPIV3 and commercially available. However, the utility of these antibodies for several immunological and proteomic assays for understanding the nature of HPIV3 infection remain to be characterized. Herein, we report the development and characterization of monoclonal antibodies against hemagglutinin-neuraminidase (HN of HPIV3. A recombinant full-length HPIV3-HN was successfully synthesized using the wheat-germ cell-free protein production system. After immunization and cell fusion, 36 mouse hybridomas producing MAbs to HPIV3-HN were established. The MAbs obtained were fully characterized using ELISA, immunoblotting and immunofluorescent analyses. Of the MAbs tested, single clone was found to be applicable in both flow cytometry and immunoprecipitation procedures. By utilizing the antibody, we newly identified HPIV3-HN binding host proteins via immunoprecipitation-based mass spectrometry analysis. This study provides the availability of our newly-developed MAbs as a valuable tool for the study of HPIV3 infection as well as the several diagnostic tests of this virus.

  10. Specific small-molecule activator of Aurora kinase A induces autophosphorylation in a cell-free system. (United States)

    Kishore, A Hari; Vedamurthy, B M; Mantelingu, K; Agrawal, Shipra; Reddy, B A Ashok; Roy, Siddhartha; Rangappa, K S; Kundu, Tapas K


    Aurora kinases are essential for chromosomal segregation and cell division and thereby important for maintaining the proper genomic integrity. There are three classes of aurora kinases in humans: A, B, and C. Aurora kinase A is frequently overexpressed in various cancers. The link of the overexpression and tumorigenesis is yet to be understood. By employing virtual screening, we have found that anacardic acid, a pentadecane aliphatic chain containing hydroxylcarboxylic acid, from cashew nut shell liquid could be docked in Aurora kinases A and B. Remarkably, we found that anacardic acid could potently activate the Aurora kinase A mediated phosphorylation of histone H3, but at a similar concentration the activity of aurora kinase B remained unaffected in vitro. Mechanistically, anacardic acid induces the structural changes and also the autophosphorylation of the aurora kinase A to enhance the enzyme activity. This data thus indicate anacardic acid as the first small-molecule activator of Aurora kinase, which could be highly useful for probing the function of hyperactive (overexpressed) Aurora kinase A.

  11. Progress in Electrolyte-Free Fuel Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuzheng eLu


    Full Text Available Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC represents a clean electrochemical energy conversion technology with characteristics of high conversion efficiency and low emissions. It is one of the most important new energy technologies in the future. However, the manufacture of SOFCs based on the structure of anode/electrolyte/cathode is complicated and time-consuming. Thus, the cost for the entire fabrication and technology is too high to be affordable and challenges still hinder commercialization. Recently, a novel type of Electrolyte -free fuel cell (EFFC with single component was invented which could be the potential candidate for the next generation of advanced fuel cells. This paper briefly introduces the EFFC, working principle, performance and advantages with updated research progress. A number of key R&D issues about EFFCs have been addressed and future opportunities and challenges are discussed.

  12. Corrosion free phosphoric acid fuel cell (United States)

    Wright, Maynard K.


    A phosphoric acid fuel cell with an electrolyte fuel system which supplies electrolyte via a wick disposed adjacent a cathode to an absorbent matrix which transports the electrolyte to portions of the cathode and an anode which overlaps the cathode on all sides to prevent corrosion within the cell.

  13. Pyrrhocoricin, a proline-rich antimicrobial peptide derived from insect, inhibits the translation process in the cell-free Escherichia coli protein synthesis system. (United States)

    Taniguchi, Masayuki; Ochiai, Akihito; Kondo, Hiroshi; Fukuda, Shun; Ishiyama, Yohei; Saitoh, Eiichi; Kato, Tetsuo; Tanaka, Takaaki


    Previous studies have shown that pyrrhocoricin, a proline-rich antimicrobial peptide (PrAMP), killed sensitive species in a dose-dependent manner by specifically binding to DnaK. Here, on the basis of the finding that DnaK-deficient Escherichia coli strains are susceptible to PrAMPs, we used pyrrhocoricin to investigate internal targets other than DnaK. Using conventional antibiotics (bleomycin, streptomycin, and fosfomycin) that have known modes of action, first, we validated the availability of an assay using a cell-free rapid translation system (RTS), which is an in vitro protein synthesis system based on E. coli lysate, for evaluating inhibition of protein synthesis. We found that, similarly to bleomycin and streptomycin, pyrrhocoricin inhibited GFP synthesis in RTS in a concentration-dependent manner. In addition, blockage of transcription and translation steps in RTS was individually estimated using RT-PCR after gene expression to determine mRNA products and using sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis to determine the amounts of GFP expressed from purified mRNA, respectively. The results demonstrated that this inhibition of GFP synthesis by pyrrhocoricin did not occur at the transcription step but rather at the translation step, in a manner similar to that of GFP synthesis by streptomycin, an inhibitor of the translation step by causing misreading of tRNA. These results suggest that RTS is a powerful assay system for determining if antimicrobial peptides inhibit protein synthesis and its transcription and/or translation steps. This is the first study to have shown that pyrrhocoricin inhibited protein synthesis by specifically repressing the translation step.

  14. Expression regulation by a methyl-CpG binding domain in an E. coli based, cell-free TX-TL system (United States)

    Schenkelberger, M.; Shanak, S.; Finkler, M.; Worst, E. G.; Noireaux, V.; Helms, V.; Ott, A.


    Cytosine methylation plays an important role in the epigenetic regulation of eukaryotic gene expression. The methyl-CpG binding domain (MBD) is common to a family of eukaryotic transcriptional regulators. How MBD, a stretch of about 80 amino acids, recognizes CpGs in a methylation dependent manner, and as a function of sequence, is only partly understood. Here we show, using an Escherichia coli cell-free expression system, that MBD from the human transcriptional regulator MeCP2 performs as a specific, methylation-dependent repressor in conjunction with the BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) promoter sequence. Mutation of either base flanking the central CpG pair changes the expression level of the target gene. However, the relative degree of repression as a function of MBD concentration remains unaltered. Molecular dynamics simulations that address the DNA B fiber ratio and the handedness reveal cooperative transitions in the promoter DNA upon MBD binding that correlate well with our experimental observations. We suggest that not only steric hindrance, but also conformational changes of the BDNF promoter as a result of MBD binding are required for MBD to act as a specific inhibitory element. Our work demonstrates that the prokaryotic transcription machinery can reproduce features of epigenetic mammalian transcriptional regulatory elements.

  15. Hetero subunit interaction and RNA recognition of yeast tRNA (m7G46) methyltransferase synthesized in a wheat germ cell-free translation system. (United States)

    Muneyoshi, Yuki; Matsumoto, Keisuke; Tomikawa, Chie; Toyooka, Takashi; Ochi, Anna; Masaoka, Takashi; Endo, Yaeta; Hori, Hiroyuki


    Yeast tRNA (m(7)G46) methyltransferase contains two protein subunits (Trm8 and Trm82). The enzyme catalyzes a methyl-transfer from S-adenosyl-L-methionine to the N(7) atom of guanine at position 46 in tRNA. We deviced synthesis of active Trm8-Trm82 heterodimer in a wheat germ cell-free translation system. When Trm8 or Trm82 mRNA were used for a synthesis, Trm8 or Trm82 protein could be synthesized. Upon mixing the synthesized Trm8 and Trm82 proteins, no active Trm8-Trm82 heterodimer was produced. Active Trm8-Trm82 heterodimer was only synthesized under conditions, in which both Trm8 and Trm82 mRNAs were co-translated. To address the RNA recognition mechanism of the Trm8-Trm82 complex, we investigated methyl acceptance activities of eight truncated yeast tRNA(Phe) transcripts. In this meeting, we demonstrate that yeast Trm8-Trm82 has stricter recognition requirements for the tRNA molecule as compared to the bacterial enzyme, TrmB.

  16. Insights to the effects of free cells on community structure of attached cells and chalcopyrite bioleaching during different stages. (United States)

    Feng, Shoushuai; Yang, Hailin; Wang, Wu


    The effects of free cells on community structure of attached cells and chalcopyrite bioleaching by Acidithiobacillus sp. during different stages were investigated. The attached cells of Acidithiobacillus thiooxidans owned the community advantage from 14thd to the end of bioprocess in the normal system. The community structure of attached cells was greatly influenced in the free cells-deficient systems. Compared to A. thiooxidans, the attached cells community of Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans had a higher dependence on its free cells. Meanwhile, the analysis of key biochemical parameters revealed that the effects of free cells on chalcopyrite bioleaching in different stages were diverse, ranging from 32.8% to 64.3%. The bioleaching contribution of free cells of A. ferrooxidans in the stationary stage (8-14thd) was higher than those of A. thiooxidans, while the situation was gradually reversed in the jarosite passivation inhibited stage (26-40thd). These results may be useful in guiding chalcopyrite bioleaching.

  17. Scale-free dynamics of somatic adaptability in immune system

    CERN Document Server

    Saito, Shiro


    The long-time dynamics of somatic adaptability in immune system is simulated by a simple physical model. The immune system described by the model exhibits a scale free behavior as is observed in living systems. The balance between the positive and negative feedbacks of the model leads to a robust immune system where the positive one corresponds to the formation of memory cells and the negative one to immunosuppression. Also the immunosenescence of the system is discussed based on the time-dependence of the epigenetic landscape of the adaptive immune cells in the shape space.

  18. On-Orbit, Immuno-Based, Label-Free White Blood Cell Counting System with Microelectromechanical Sensor Technology (OILWBCS-MEMS) (United States)

    Edmonds, Jessica


    Aurora Flight Sciences, in partnership with Draper Laboratory, has developed a miniaturized system to count white blood cells in microgravity environments. The system uses MEMS technology to simultaneously count total white blood cells, the five white blood cell differential subgroups, and various lymphocyte subtypes. The OILWBCS-MEMS detection technology works by immobilizing an array of white blood cell-specific antibodies on small, gold-coated membranes. When blood flows across the membranes, specific cells' surface protein antigens bind to their corresponding antibodies. This binding can be measured and correlated to cell counts. In Phase I, the partners demonstrated surface chemistry sensitivity and specificity for total white blood cells and two lymphocyte subtypes. In Phase II, a functional prototype demonstrated end-to-end operation. This rugged, miniaturized device requires minimal blood sample preparation and will be useful for both space flight and terrestrial applications.

  19. Device-Free Indoor Activity Recognition System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammed Abdulaziz Aide Al-qaness


    Full Text Available In this paper, we explore the properties of the Channel State Information (CSI of WiFi signals and present a device-free indoor activity recognition system. Our proposed system uses only one ubiquitous router access point and a laptop as a detection point, while the user is free and neither needs to wear sensors nor carry devices. The proposed system recognizes six daily activities, such as walk, crawl, fall, stand, sit, and lie. We have built the prototype with an effective feature extraction method and a fast classification algorithm. The proposed system has been evaluated in a real and complex environment in both line-of-sight (LOS and none-line-of-sight (NLOS scenarios, and the results validate the performance of the proposed system.

  20. Riemann pendulum in free fall systems (United States)

    Fargion, Daniele


    The possible detection in space and in different free fall system of the tidal effects via a Riemann pendulum rate, is considered. The possibility to perform such an experiment for educational purpouse by a Moire' or Holographic double exposure detection is described. The International Space Station may obtain high quality test of 3D Riemann pendulum effects.

  1. Design of carrier tRNAs and selection of four-base codons for efficient incorporation of various nonnatural amino acids into proteins in Spodoptera frugiperda 21 (Sf21) insect cell-free translation system. (United States)

    Taki, Masumi; Tokuda, Yasunori; Ohtsuki, Takashi; Sisido, Masahiko


    Spodoptera frugiperda 21 (Sf21) insect cell-free protein synthesizing system was expanded to include nonnatural amino acids. Orthogonal tRNAs that work as carriers of nonnatural amino acids in the insect system were explored. Four-base codons for assigning the positions of nonnatural amino acids were also selected. Mutated streptavidin mRNAs that contained different four-base codons were prepared and added to the insect cell-free system in the presence of various tRNAs possessing the corresponding four-base anticodons. The tRNAs were chemically aminoacylated with various types of nonnatural amino acids to examine their incorporation efficiencies. Using p-nitrophenylalanine as the nonnatural amino acid and streptavidin as the target protein, tRNA sequences and the types of four-base codons were optimized to maximize the yield of the nonnatural mutant and to minimize production of full-length proteins that do not contain the nonnatural amino acid. Among the tRNA sequences taken from a variety of tRNAs of nonstandard structures, the tRNA derived from Methanosarcina acetivorans tRNA(Pyl) was the most efficient and orthogonal tRNA. Of the CGGN-type four-base codons, CGGA and CGGG were the most efficient ones for assigning the positions of nonnatural amino acids. p-Nitrophenylalanine and 2-naphthylalanine were efficiently incorporated as in the case of Escherichia coli and rabbit reticulocyte cell-free systems. Much less efficient incorporation was observed, however, for other nonnatural amino acids, indicating that the insect system is less tolerant to the structural diversity of amino acids than the E. coli cell-free system.

  2. Efficient reprogramming of naïve-like induced pluripotent stem cells from porcine adipose-derived stem cells with a feeder-independent and serum-free system. (United States)

    Zhang, Yu; Wei, Chao; Zhang, Pengfei; Li, Xia; Liu, Tong; Pu, Yong; Li, Yunsheng; Cao, Zubing; Cao, Hongguo; Liu, Ya; Zhang, Xiaorong; Zhang, Yunhai


    Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) are somatic cells reprogrammed by ectopic expression of transcription factors or small molecule treatment, which resemble embryonic stem cells (ESCs). They hold great promise for improving the generation of genetically modified large animals. However, few porcine iPSCs (piPSCs) lines obtained currently can support development of cloned embryos. Here, we generated iPSCs from porcine adipose-derived stem cells (pADSCs), using drug-inducible expression of defined human factors (Oct4, Sox2, c-Myc and Klf4). Reprogramming of iPSCs from pADSCs was more efficient than from fibroblasts, regardless of using feeder-independent or feeder-dependent manners. By addition of Lif-2i medium containing mouse Lif, CHIR99021 and PD0325901 (Lif-2i), naïve-like piPSCs were obtained under feeder-independent and serum-free conditions. These successfully reprogrammed piPSCs were characterized by short cell cycle intervals, alkaline phosphatase (AP) staining, expression of Oct4, Sox2, Nanog, SSEA3 and SSEA4, and normal karyotypes. The resemblance of piPSCs to naïve ESCs was confirmed by their packed dome morphology, growth after single-cell dissociation, Lif-dependency, up-regulation of Stella and Eras, low expression levels of TRA-1-60, TRA-1-81 and MHC I and activation of both X chromosomes. Full reprogramming of naïve-like piPSCs was evaluated by the significant up-regulation of Lin28, Esrrb, Utf1 and Dppa5, differentiating into cell types of all three germ layers in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, nuclear transfer embryos from naïve-like piPSCs could develop to blastocysts with improved quality. Thus, we provided an efficient protocol for generating naïve-like piPSCs from pADSCs in a feeder-independent and serum-free system with controlled regulation of exogenous genes, which may facilitate optimization of culture media and the production of transgenic pigs.

  3. Cell-free fetal DNA and cell-free total DNA levels in spontaneous abortion with fetal chromosomal aneuploidy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji Hyae Lim

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Cell-free fetal DNA and cell-free total DNA in maternal circulation have been proposed as potential markers for noninvasive monitoring of the placental condition during the pregnancy. However, the correlation of and change in cell-free fetal DNA and cell-free total DNA in spontaneous abortion (SA with fetal chromosomal aneuploidy have not yet been reported. Therefore, we investigated cell-free fetal DNA and cell-free total DNA levels in SA women with fetal chromosomal aneuploidy. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: A nested case-control study was conducted with maternal plasma collected from 268 women in their first trimester of pregnancy. Subjects included 41 SA with normal fetal karyotype, 26 SA with fetal chromosomal aneuploidy, and 201 normal controls. The unmethylated PDE9A gene was used to measure the maternal plasma levels of cell-free fetal DNA. The GAPDH gene was used to measure the maternal plasma levels of cell-free total DNA. The diagnostic accuracy was measured using receiver-operating characteristic (ROC curves. Levels of cell-free fetal DNA and cell-free total DNA were significantly higher in both SA women with normal fetal karyotype and SA women with fetal chromosomal aneuploidy in comparison with the normal controls (P<0.001 in both. The correlation between cell-free fetal DNA and cell-free total DNA levels was stronger in the normal controls (r = 0.843, P<0.001 than in SA women with normal karyotype (r = 0.465, P = 0.002 and SA women with fetal chromosomal aneuploidy (r = 0.412, P = 0.037. The area under the ROC curve for cell-free fetal DNA and cell-free total DNA was 0.898 (95% CI, 0.852-0.945 and 0.939 (95% CI, 0.903-0.975, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Significantly high levels of cell-free fetal DNA and cell-free total DNA were found in SA women with fetal chromosomal aneuploidy. Our findings suggest that cell-free fetal DNA and cell-free total DNA may be useful biomarkers for the prediction of SA

  4. Free radicals, antioxidant defense systems, and schizophrenia. (United States)

    Wu, Jing Qin; Kosten, Thomas R; Zhang, Xiang Yang


    The etiopathogenic mechanisms of schizophrenia are to date unknown, although several hypotheses have been suggested. Accumulating evidence suggests that excessive free radical production or oxidative stress may be involved in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia as evidenced by increased production of reactive oxygen or decreased antioxidant protection in schizophrenic patients. This review aims to summarize the basic molecular mechanisms of free radical metabolism, the impaired antioxidant defense system and membrane pathology in schizophrenia, their interrelationships with the characteristic clinical symptoms and the implications for antipsychotic treatments. In schizophrenia, there is accumulating evidence of altered antioxidant enzyme activities and increased levels of lipid peroxidation, as well as altered levels of plasma antioxidants. Moreover, free radical-mediated abnormalities may contribute to specific aspects of schizophrenic symptomatology and complications of its treatment with antipsychotic drugs, as well as the development of tardive dyskinesia (TD). Finally, the potential therapeutic strategies implicated by the accumulating data on oxidative stress mechanisms for the treatment of schizophrenia are discussed.

  5. Xeno-free culture of human periodontal ligament stem cells. (United States)

    Trubiani, Oriana; Diomede, Francesca


    The possibility of transplanting adult stem cells into damaged organs has opened a new prospective for the treatment of several human pathologies. Currently, in vitro expansion and culture of mesenchymal stem cells is founded on supplementing cell culture and differentiation medium with fetal calf serum (FCS) or fetal bovine serum (FBS) that contain numerous growth factors inducing cell attachment to plastic surfaces, proliferation, and differentiation. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) cultured with medium containing FCS or FBS are unusable in the cell therapy; in fact the central issues regarding limitations in using animal sera for cell therapy is that its components are highly variable and often unknown and may trigger a xenogenic immune response, immunological reactions, and the potential transmission of prion diseases and zoonoses. Here we describe the culture system protocols for the expansion and production of human Periodontal Ligament Stem Cells (hPDLSCs) using a new xeno-free medium formulation ensuring the maintenance of the stem cells features comprising the multiple passage expansion, mesengenic lineage differentiation, cellular phenotype, and genomic stability, essential elements for conforming to translation to cell therapy.

  6. Photovoltaic power generation system free of bypass diodes (United States)

    Lentine, Anthony L.; Okandan, Murat; Nielson, Gregory N.


    A photovoltaic power generation system that includes a solar panel that is free of bypass diodes is described herein. The solar panel includes a plurality of photovoltaic sub-modules, wherein at least two of photovoltaic sub-modules in the plurality of photovoltaic sub-modules are electrically connected in parallel. A photovoltaic sub-module includes a plurality of groups of electrically connected photovoltaic cells, wherein at least two of the groups are electrically connected in series. A photovoltaic group includes a plurality of strings of photovoltaic cells, wherein a string of photovoltaic cells comprises a plurality of photovoltaic cells electrically connected in series. The strings of photovoltaic cells are electrically connected in parallel, and the photovoltaic cells are microsystem-enabled photovoltaic cells.

  7. Serum-free solutions for cryopreservation of cells. (United States)

    Campbell, Lia H; Brockbank, Kelvin G M


    With the development of cell-based assays and therapies, the purity of reagents used to grow and maintain cells has become much more important. In particular, the use of fetal calf serum for culturing cells presents a direct path for potential contamination of cell cultures. In recent years, much research has focused on the development of serum-free culturing systems, not only to alleviate difficulties due to availability and cost of fetal calf serum but also to prevent the transmission of potentially fatal diseases to human patients. Additionally, methods need to be developed for long-term storage of cell stocks that also reduce the risk of exposure to harmful diseases. As most methods employ fetal calf serum in their freezing formulations, solutions that avoid the use of fetal calf serum while providing equivalent or better recovery of cells upon thawing would be ideal. In this study, two vascular cell lines have been cryopreserved as adherent cell populations in two widely used cryoprotectants, dimethyl sulfoxide and 1,2-propanediol, and two vehicle solutions, Euro-Collins and Unisol-cryoprotectant vehicle specifically formulated for the maintenance of cell homeostasis at temperatures below 37 degrees C. The addition of serum to these formulations was also evaluated to determine if its presence provided any additional benefit to the cells during cryopreservation. The results demonstrated that using vehicle solutions designed for lower temperatures produced viable cells that retained cell population viability values up to 75% of unfrozen controls. These results also demonstrated that including serum in the formulation provided no additional benefit to the cells and in some cases actually produced lower cell viability after cryopreservation. In conclusion, the development of solutions designed for low-temperature storage of cells provides a viable alternative to more conventional cryopreservation protocols and eliminates the necessity of including serum in these

  8. LIF-free embryonic stem cell culture in simulated microgravity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yumi Kawahara

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF is an indispensable factor for maintaining mouse embryonic stem (ES cell pluripotency. A feeder layer and serum are also needed to maintain an undifferentiated state, however, such animal derived materials need to be eliminated for clinical applications. Therefore, a more reliable ES cell culture technique is required. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We cultured mouse ES cells in simulated microgravity using a 3D-clinostat. We used feeder-free and serum-free media without LIF. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Here we show that simulated microgravity allows novel LIF-free and animal derived material-free culture methods for mouse ES cells.

  9. Preparation of a Saccharomyces cerevisiae cell-free extract for in vitro translation. (United States)

    Wu, Cheng; Sachs, Matthew S


    Eukaryotic cell-free in vitro translation systems have been in use since the 1970s. These systems can faithfully synthesize polypeptides when programmed with mRNA, enabling the production of polypeptides for analysis as well as permitting analyses of the cis- and trans-acting factors that regulate translation. Here we describe the preparation and use of cell-free translation systems from the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

  10. Efficient cell-free expression with the endogenous E. Coli RNA polymerase and sigma factor 70

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noireaux Vincent


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Escherichia coli cell-free expression systems use bacteriophage RNA polymerases, such as T7, to synthesize large amounts of recombinant proteins. These systems are used for many applications in biotechnology, such as proteomics. Recently, informational processes have been reconstituted in vitro with cell-free systems. These synthetic approaches, however, have been seriously limited by a lack of transcription modularity. The current available cell-free systems have been optimized to work with bacteriophage RNA polymerases, which put significant restrictions to engineer processes related to biological information. The development of efficient cell-free systems with broader transcription capabilities is required to study complex informational processes in vitro. Results In this work, an efficient cell-free expression system that uses the endogenous E. coli RNA polymerase only and sigma factor 70 for transcription was prepared. Approximately 0.75 mg/ml of Firefly luciferase and enhanced green fluorescent protein were produced in batch mode. A plasmid was optimized with different regulatory parts to increase the expression. In addition, a new eGFP was engineered that is more translatable in cell-free systems than the original eGFP. The protein production was characterized with three different adenosine triphosphate (ATP regeneration systems: creatine phosphate (CP, phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP, and 3-phosphoglyceric acid (3-PGA. The maximum protein production was obtained with 3-PGA. Preparation of the crude extract was streamlined to a simple routine procedure that takes 12 hours including cell culture. Conclusions Although it uses the endogenous E. coli transcription machinery, this cell-free system can produce active proteins in quantities comparable to bacteriophage systems. The E. coli transcription provides much more possibilities to engineer informational processes in vitro. Many E. coli promoters/operators specific to sigma

  11. Virus-free transient protein production in Sf9 cells. (United States)

    Shen, Xiao; Hacker, David L; Baldi, Lucia; Wurm, Florian M


    A method for virus-free transient gene expression from suspension-adapted Sf9 insect cells was developed with the gene of interest being expressed from a plasmid carrying the homologous region 5 enhancer (hr5) and the immediate early 1 (ie1) promoter from Autographa californica multicapsid nucleopolyhedrovirus (AcMNPV). Under the optimal conditions described in the study, cells were transfected at a density of 30×10⁶ cells/mL with 0.9 μg DNA and 1.35 μg of linear 25 kD polyethylenimine (PEI) per million cells. Following transfection, the culture was diluted to 4×10⁶ cells/mL for the protein production phase. The volumetric yield of tumor necrosis factor receptor (ectodomain) fused to an Fc domain (TNFR-Fc) was about 100 μg/mL for cultures at volumes up to 300 mL. As expected, the molecular weight of the dimeric TNFR-Fc produced from Sf9 cells was about 6 kDa less than that produced from a recombinant Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cell line due to differences in glycosylation between the two hosts. Transient transfection provides an alternative to the baculovirus expression vector system (BEVS) for the rapid production of recombinant proteins from Sf9 cells.

  12. Contact-free single-cell cultivation by negative dielectrophoresis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jaeger, Magnus S; Uhlig, Katja [Fraunhofer Institute for Biomedical Engineering (IBMT), Am Muehlenberg 13, 14476 Potsdam (Germany); Schnelle, Thomas [Zimmermann and Partner, European Patent Attorneys, Oranienburger Strasse 90, 10178 Berlin (Germany); Mueller, Torsten [JPK Instruments AG, Aufgang C, Haus 2, Bouchestrasse 12, 12435 Berlin (Germany)], E-mail:


    In parallel to recent progress of high-content analysis in cell biology, negative dielectrophoresis (nDEP) has continuously evolved as a potent tool for contact-free manipulation and investigation of single cells. As such, it can be especially beneficial for the handling of rare and valuable cells, e.g. in stem cell research, immunology and autologous therapy. Current nDEP applications are mainly based on flow-through systems where a small volume or single cells are pumped through microfluidic channels and analysed in seconds to minutes. Such short-term electric field exposures were repeatedly shown to be physiologically harmless. Conditions, however, might change in longer experiments when damages may accumulate. Therefore, we focus on potential limits to long-term nDEP application, with yeast serving as a model organism. Cells are reported to be successfully cultivated over several hours while suspended contact-freely in cell medium by nDEP. From comparisons of the cell division in nDEP structures under different electric conditions, conclusions are drawn with respect to which parameters govern the possible stress on the cells and how to avoid it. Firstly, the observed frequency dependence hints at an influence of the membrane polarization. Secondly, the inhibition of proliferation at high voltages is found to be overcome by external cooling of the microchips. This implies thermal effects on the cells. The warming is further examined by infrared (IR) thermometry. Despite its inherent drawbacks, IR provides a quick and easy method of determining the temperature of microfluidic systems without interfering local probes or reporter substances.

  13. The scale-free dynamics of eukaryotic cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel A Aon

    Full Text Available Temporal organization of biological processes requires massively parallel processing on a synchronized time-base. We analyzed time-series data obtained from the bioenergetic oscillatory outputs of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and isolated cardiomyocytes utilizing Relative Dispersional (RDA and Power Spectral (PSA analyses. These analyses revealed broad frequency distributions and evidence for long-term memory in the observed dynamics. Moreover RDA and PSA showed that the bioenergetic dynamics in both systems show fractal scaling over at least 3 orders of magnitude, and that this scaling obeys an inverse power law. Therefore we conclude that in S. cerevisiae and cardiomyocytes the dynamics are scale-free in vivo. Applying RDA and PSA to data generated from an in silico model of mitochondrial function indicated that in yeast and cardiomyocytes the underlying mechanisms regulating the scale-free behavior are similar. We validated this finding in vivo using single cells, and attenuating the activity of the mitochondrial inner membrane anion channel with 4-chlorodiazepam to show that the oscillation of NAD(PH and reactive oxygen species (ROS can be abated in these two evolutionarily distant species. Taken together these data strongly support our hypothesis that the generation of ROS, coupled to redox cycling, driven by cytoplasmic and mitochondrial processes, are at the core of the observed rhythmicity and scale-free dynamics. We argue that the operation of scale-free bioenergetic dynamics plays a fundamental role to integrate cellular function, while providing a framework for robust, yet flexible, responses to the environment.

  14. Dynamic imaging of cell-free and cell-associated viral capture in mature dendritic cells. (United States)

    Izquierdo-Useros, Nuria; Esteban, Olga; Rodriguez-Plata, Maria T; Erkizia, Itziar; Prado, Julia G; Blanco, Julià; García-Parajo, Maria F; Martinez-Picado, Javier


    Dendritic cells (DCs) capture human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) through a non-fusogenic mechanism that enables viral transmission to CD4(+) T cells, contributing to in vivo viral dissemination. Although previous studies have provided important clues to cell-free viral capture by mature DCs (mDCs), dynamic and kinetic insight on this process is still missing. Here, we used three-dimensional video microscopy and single-particle tracking approaches to dynamically dissect both cell-free and cell-associated viral capture by living mDCs. We show that cell-free virus capture by mDCs operates through three sequential phases: virus binding through specific determinants expressed in the viral particle, polarized or directional movements toward concrete regions of the cell membrane and virus accumulation in a sac-like structure where trapped viral particles display a hindered diffusive behavior. Moreover, real-time imaging of cell-associated viral transfer to mDCs showed a similar dynamics to that exhibited by cell-free virus endocytosis leading to viral accumulation in compartments. However, cell-associated HIV type 1 transfer to mDCs was the most effective pathway, boosted throughout enhanced cellular contacts with infected CD4(+) T cells. Our results suggest that in lymphoid tissues, mDC viral uptake could occur either by encountering cell-free or cell-associated virus produced by infected cells generating the perfect scenario to promote HIV pathogenesis and impact disease progression.

  15. Regulation of neutrophil NADPH oxidase activation in a cell-free system by guanine nucleotides and fluoride. Evidence for participation of a pertussis and cholera toxin-insensitive G protein. (United States)

    Gabig, T G; English, D; Akard, L P; Schell, M J


    Guanine nucleotide-binding regulatory proteins (G proteins) transduce a remarkably diverse group of extracellular signals to a relatively limited number of intracellular target enzymes. In the neutrophil, transduction of the signal following fMet-Leu-Phe receptor-ligand interaction is mediated by a pertussis toxin substrate (Gi) that activates inositol-specific phospholipase C. We have utilized a plasma membrane-containing fraction from unstimulated human neutrophils as the target enzyme to explore the role of G proteins in arachidonate and cytosolic cofactor-dependent activation of the NADPH-dependent O-2-generating oxidase. When certain guanine nucleotides or their nonhydrolyzable analogues were present during arachidonate and cytosolic cofactor-dependent activation, they exerted substantial dose-dependent effects. The GTP analogue, GTP gamma S, caused a 2-fold increase in NADPH oxidase activation (half-maximal stimulation, 1.1 microM). Either GDP or its nonhydrolyzable analogue, GDP beta S, inhibited up to 80% of the basal NADPH oxidase activation (Ki GDP = 0.12 mM, GDP beta S = 0.23 mM). GTP caused only slight and variable stimulation, whereas F-, an agent known to promote the active conformation of G proteins, caused a 1.6-fold stimulation of NADPH oxidase activation. NADPH oxidase activation in the cell-free system was absolutely and specifically dependent on Mg2+. Although O2- production in response to fMet-Leu-Phe was inhibited greater than 90% in neutrophils pretreated with pertussis toxin, cytosolic cofactor and target oxidase membranes from neutrophils treated with pertussis toxin showed no change in basal- or GTP gamma S-stimulated NADPH oxidase activation. Cholera toxin treatment of neutrophils also had no effect on the cell-free activation system. Our results suggest a role for a G protein that is distinct from Gs or Gi in the arachidonate and cytosolic cofactor-dependent NADPH oxidase cell-free activation system.

  16. The Free Enterprise System: Essential to a Free Society (United States)

    Johnson, Wilson S.


    The author cites the advantages of capitalism and contends that teachers can and should convey the principles of the competitive enterprise system. They should not try to rationalize or defend the shortcomings and corrupt practices which result when that system is short-circuited by well-meaning but ill-advised government interference. (Author/AJ)


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Song Wu; Zhen Fan; Andrew H. Seltzer; Richard G. Herman


    This report describes a novel NOx control system that has the potential to drastically reduce cost, and enhance performance, operation and safety of power plant NOx control. The new system optimizes the burner and the furnace to achieve very low NOx levels and to provide an adequate amount of CO, and uses the CO for reducing NO both in-furnace and over a downstream AFSCR (ammonia-free selective catalytic reduction) reactor. The AF-SCR combines the advantages of the highly successful SCR technology for power plants and the TWC (three-way catalytic converter) widely used on automobiles. Like the SCR, it works in oxidizing environment of combustion flue gas and uses only base metal catalysts. Like the TWC, the AF-SCR removes NO and excess CO simultaneously without using any external reagent, such as ammonia. This new process has been studied in a development program jointed funded by the US Department of Energy and Foster Wheeler. The report outlines the experimental catalyst work performed on a bench-scale reactor, including test procedure, operating conditions, and results of various catalyst formulations. Several candidate catalysts, prepared with readily available transition metal oxides and common substrate materials, have shown over 80-90% removal for both NO and CO in oxidizing gas mixtures and at elevated temperatures. A detailed combustion study of a 400 MWe coal-fired boiler, applying computational fluid dynamics techniques to model boiler and burner design, has been carried out to investigate ways to optimize the combustion process for the lowest NOx formation and optimum CO/NO ratios. Results of this boiler and burner optimization work are reported. The paper further discusses catalyst scale-up considerations and the conceptual design of a 400 MWe size AF-SCR reactor, as well as economics analysis indicating large cost savings of the ammonia-free NOx control process over the current SCR technology.

  18. Efficient Compact-Layer-Free, Hole-Conductor-Free, Fully Printable Mesoscopic Perovskite Solar Cell. (United States)

    Jiang, Xixi; Xiong, Yuli; Mei, Anyi; Rong, Yaoguang; Hu, Yue; Hong, Li; Jin, Yingxia; Liu, Qingju; Han, Hongwei


    A compact-layer-free, hole-conductor-free, fully printable mesoscopic perovskite solar cell presents a power conversion efficiency of over 13%, which is comparable to that of the device with a TiO2 compact layer. The different wettability of the perovskite precursor solution on the surface of FTO and TiO2 possesses a significant effect on realizing efficient mesoscopic perovskite solar cell. This result shows a promising future in printable solar cells by further simplifying the fabrication process and lowering the preparation costs.

  19. Validation of cell-free culture using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and gene expression studies. (United States)

    Yang, R; Elankumaran, Y; Hijjawi, N; Ryan, U


    A cell-free culture system for Cryptosporidium parvum was analysed using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) to characterise life cycle stages and compare gene expression in cell-free culture and cell culture using HCT-8 cells. Cryptosporidium parvum samples were harvested at 2 h, 8 h, 14 h, 26 h, 50 h, 74 h, 98 h, 122 h and 170 h, chemically fixed and specimens were observed using a Zeiss 1555 scanning electron microscope. The presence of sporozoites, trophozoites and type I merozoites were identified by SEM. Gene expression in cell culture and cell-free culture was studied using reverse transcriptase quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) of the sporozoite surface antigen protein (cp15), the glycoprotein 900 (gp900), the Cryptosporidium oocyst wall protein (COWP) and 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes in both cell free and conventional cell culture. In cell culture, cp15 expression peaked at 74 h, gp900 expression peaked at 74 h and 98 h and COWP expression peaked at 50 h. In cell-free culture, CP15 expression peaked at 98 h, gp900 expression peaked at 74 h and COWP expression peaked at 122 h. The present study is the first to compare gene expression of C. parvum in cell culture and cell-free culture and to characterise life cycle stages of C. parvum in cell-free culture using SEM. Findings from this study showed that gene expression patterns in cell culture and cell-free culture were similar but in cell-free culture, gene expression was delayed for CP15 and COWP in cell free culture compared with the cell culture system and was lower. Although three life cycle stageswere conclusively identified, improvements in SEM methodology should lead to the detection of more life cycle stages.

  20. BRAF Mutation Testing in Cell-Free DNA from the Plasma of Patients with Advanced Cancers Using a Rapid, Automated Molecular Diagnostics System. (United States)

    Janku, Filip; Huang, Helen J; Claes, Bart; Falchook, Gerald S; Fu, Siqing; Hong, David; Ramzanali, Nishma M; Nitti, Giovanni; Cabrilo, Goran; Tsimberidou, Apostolia M; Naing, Aung; Piha-Paul, Sarina A; Wheler, Jennifer J; Karp, Daniel D; Holley, Veronica R; Zinner, Ralph G; Subbiah, Vivek; Luthra, Rajyalakshmi; Kopetz, Scott; Overman, Michael J; Kee, Bryan K; Patel, Sapna; Devogelaere, Benoit; Sablon, Erwin; Maertens, Geert; Mills, Gordon B; Kurzrock, Razelle; Meric-Bernstam, Funda


    Cell-free (cf) DNA from plasma offers an easily obtainable material for BRAF mutation analysis for diagnostics and response monitoring. In this study, plasma-derived cfDNA samples from patients with progressing advanced cancers or malignant histiocytosis with known BRAF(V600) status from formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tumors were tested using a prototype version of the Idylla BRAF Mutation Test, a fully integrated real-time PCR-based test with turnaround time about 90 minutes. Of 160 patients, BRAF(V600) mutations were detected in 62 (39%) archival FFPE tumor samples and 47 (29%) plasma cfDNA samples. The two methods had overall agreement in 141 patients [88%; κ, 0.74; SE, 0.06; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.63-0.85]. Idylla had a sensitivity of 73% (95% CI, 0.60-0.83) and specificity of 98% (95% CI, 0.93-1.00). A higher percentage, but not concentration, of BRAF(V600) cfDNA in the wild-type background (>2% vs. ≤ 2%) was associated with shorter overall survival (OS; P = 0.005) and in patients with BRAF mutations in the tissue, who were receiving BRAF/MEK inhibitors, shorter time to treatment failure (TTF; P = 0.001). Longitudinal monitoring demonstrated that decreasing levels of BRAF(V600) cfDNA were associated with longer TTF (P = 0.045). In conclusion, testing for BRAF(V600) mutations in plasma cfDNA using the Idylla BRAF Mutation Test has acceptable concordance with standard testing of tumor tissue. A higher percentage of mutant BRAF(V600) in cfDNA corresponded with shorter OS and in patients receiving BRAF/MEK inhibitors also with shorter TTF. Mol Cancer Ther; 15(6); 1397-404. ©2016 AACR.

  1. Community dynamics of attached and free cells and the effects of attached cells on chalcopyrite bioleaching by Acidithiobacillus sp. (United States)

    Yang, Hailin; Feng, Shoushuai; Xin, Yu; Wang, Wu


    The community dynamics of attached and free cells of Acidithiobacillus sp. were investigated and compared during chalcopyrite bioleaching process. In the mixed strains system, Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans was the dominant species at the early stage while Acidithiobacillus thiooxidans owned competitive advantage from the middle stage to the end of bioprocess. Meanwhile, compared to A. ferrooxidans, more significant effects of attached cells on free biomass with A. thiooxidans were shown in either the pure or mixed strains systems. Moreover, the effects of attached cells on key chemical parameters were also studied in different adsorption-deficient systems. Consistently, the greatest reduction of key chemical ion was shown with A. thiooxidans and the loss of bioleaching efficiency was high to 50.5%. These results all demonstrated the bioleaching function of attached cells was more efficient than the free cells, especially with A. thiooxidans. These notable results would help us to further understand the chalcopyrite bioleaching.

  2. Escherichia coli NemA is an efficient chromate reductase that can be biologically immobilized to provide a cell free system for remediation of hexavalent chromium.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine J Robins

    Full Text Available Hexavalent chromium is a serious and widespread environmental pollutant. Although many bacteria have been identified that can transform highly water-soluble and toxic Cr(VI to insoluble and relatively non-toxic Cr(III, bacterial bioremediation of Cr(VI pollution is limited by a number of issues, in particular chromium toxicity to the remediating cells. To address this we sought to develop an immobilized enzymatic system for Cr(VI remediation. To identify novel Cr(VI reductase enzymes we first screened cell extracts from an Escherichia coli library of soluble oxidoreductases derived from a range of bacteria, but found that a number of these enzymes can reduce Cr(VI indirectly, via redox intermediates present in the crude extracts. Instead, activity assays for 15 candidate enzymes purified as His6-tagged proteins identified E. coli NemA as a highly efficient Cr(VI reductase (k(cat/K(M= 1.1×10(5 M(-1 s(-1 with NADH as cofactor. Fusion of nemA to the polyhydroxyalkanoate synthase gene phaC from Ralstonia eutropha enabled high-level biosynthesis of functionalized polyhydroxyalkanoate granules displaying stable and active NemA on their surface. When these granules were combined with either Bacillus subtilis glucose dehydrogenase or Candida boidinii formate dehydrogenase as a cofactor regenerating partner, high levels of chromate transformation were observed with only low initial concentrations of expensive NADH cofactor being required, the overall reaction being powered by consumption of the cheap sacrificial substrates glucose or formic acid, respectively. This system therefore offers promise as an economic solution for ex situ Cr(VI remediation.

  3. Stimulation of poliovirus RNA synthesis and virus maturation in a HeLa cell-free in vitro translation-RNA replication system by viral protein 3CDpro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wimmer Eckard


    Full Text Available Abstract Poliovirus protein 3CDpro possesses both proteinase and RNA binding activities, which are located in the 3Cpro domain of the protein. The RNA polymerase (3Dpol domain of 3CDpro modulates these activities of the protein. We have recently shown that the level of 3CDpro in HeLa cell-free in vitro translation-RNA replication reactions is suboptimal for efficient virus production. However, the addition of either 3CDpro mRNA or of purified 3CDpro protein to in vitro reactions, programmed with viral RNA, results in a 100-fold increase in virus yield. Mutational analyses of 3CDpro indicated that RNA binding by the 3Cpro domain and the integrity of interface I in the 3Dpol domain of the protein are both required for function. The aim of these studies was to determine the exact step or steps at which 3CDpro enhances virus yield and to determine the mechanism by which this occurs. Our results suggest that the addition of extra 3CDpro to in vitro translation RNA-replication reactions results in a mild enhancement of both minus and plus strand RNA synthesis. By examining the viral particles formed in the in vitro reactions on sucrose gradients we determined that 3CDpro has only a slight stimulating effect on the synthesis of capsid precursors but it strikingly enhances the maturation of virus particles. Both the stimulation of RNA synthesis and the maturation of the virus particles are dependent on the presence of an intact RNA binding site within the 3Cpro domain of 3CDpro. In addition, the integrity of interface I in the 3Dpol domain of 3CDpro is required for efficient production of mature virus. Surprisingly, plus strand RNA synthesis and virus production in in vitro reactions, programmed with full-length transcript RNA, are not enhanced by the addition of extra 3CDpro. Our results indicate that the stimulation of RNA synthesis and virus maturation by 3CDpro in vitro is dependent on the presence of a VPg-linked RNA template.

  4. Flexible ITO-Free Polymer Solar Cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Angmo, Dechan; Krebs, Frederik C


    -most cost driving factor due to expensive raw materials and processing. Given the limited lifetime and stability of PSCs as compared with other mature technologies such as silicon-based solar cells, the technological future of PSCs beyond that of academic interests rests in reducing cost of production...

  5. Free-Flying Magnetometer Data System (United States)

    Blaes, B.; Javadi, H.; Spencer, H.


    The Free-Flying Magnetometer (FFM) is an autonomous "sensorcraft" developed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) for the Enstrophy sounding rocket mission. This mission was a collaborative project between the University of New Hampshire, Cornell University and JPL. The science goal of the mission was the study of current filamentation phenomena in the northern auroral region through multipoint measurements of magnetic field. The technical objective of the mission was the proof of concept of the JPL FFM design and the demonstration of an in-situ multipoint measurement technique employing many free-flying spacecraft. Four FFMs were successfully deployed from a sounding rocket launched from Poker Flats, Alaska on February 11, 1999. These hockey-puck-sized (80 mm diameter, 38 mm. height, 250 gram mass) free flyers each carry a miniature 3-axis flux-gate magnetometer that output +/- 2 V signals corresponding to a +/- 60,000 nT measurement range for each axis. The FFM uses a synchronized four-channel Sigma(Delta) Analog-to-Digital Converter (ADC) having a dynamic range of +/- 2.5V and converting at a rate of 279 samples/second/channel. Three channels are used to digitize the magnetometer signals to 17-bit (1.144 nT/bit) resolution. The fourth ADC channel is multiplexed for system monitoring of four temperature sensors and two battery voltages. The FFM also contains two sun sensors, a laser diode which emits a fan-shaped beam, a miniature S-band transmitter for direct communication to the ground station antennas, an ultra-stable Temperature Compensated Crystal Oscillator (TCXO) clock, an integrated data subsystem implemented in a Field-Programmable Gate Array (FPGA), a 4 Mbit Static Random Access Memory (SRAM) for data storage and Lithium Thionyl Chloride batteries for power. Communicating commands to the FFM prior to deployment is achieved with an infrared (IR) link. The FFM IR receiver responds to 9-bit pulse coded signals that are generated by an IR Light Emitting

  6. LIF-Free Embryonic Stem Cell Culture in Simulated Microgravity


    Yumi Kawahara; Tomotaka Manabe; Masaya Matsumoto; Teruyuki Kajiume; Masayasu Matsumoto; Louis Yuge


    BACKGROUND: Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) is an indispensable factor for maintaining mouse embryonic stem (ES) cell pluripotency. A feeder layer and serum are also needed to maintain an undifferentiated state, however, such animal derived materials need to be eliminated for clinical applications. Therefore, a more reliable ES cell culture technique is required. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We cultured mouse ES cells in simulated microgravity using a 3D-clinostat. We used feeder-free and...

  7. Uncovering stem-cell heterogeneity in the microniche with label-free microfluidics (United States)

    Sohn, Lydia L.


    Better suited for large number of cells from bulk tissue, traditional cell-screening techniques, such as fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) and magnetic-activated cell sorting (MACS), cannot easily screen stem or progenitor cells from minute populations found in their physiological niches. Furthermore, they rely upon irreversible antibody binding, potentially altering cell properties, including gene expression and regenerative capacity. We have developed a label-free, single-cell analysis microfluidic platform capable of quantifying cell-surface marker expression of functional organ stem cells directly isolated from their micro-anatomical niche. With this platform, we have screened single quiescent muscle stem (satellite) cells derived from single myofibers, and we have uncovered an important heterogeneity in the surface-marker expression of these cells. By sorting the screened cells with our microfluidic device, we have determined what this heterogeneity means in terms of muscle stem-cell functionality. For instance, we show that the levels of beta1-integrin can predict the differentiation capacity of quiescent satellite cells, and in contrast to recent literature, that some CXCR4 + cells are not myogenic. Our results provide the first direct demonstration of a microniche-specific variation in gene expression in stem cells of the same lineage. Overall, our label-free, single-cell analysis and cell-sorting platform could be extended to other systems involving rare-cell subsets. This work was funded by the W. M. Keck Foundation, NIH, and California Institute of Regenerative Medicine

  8. Free Extracellular miRNA Functionally Targets Cells by Transfecting Exosomes from Their Companion Cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krzysztof Bryniarski

    Full Text Available Lymph node and spleen cells of mice doubly immunized by epicutaneous and intravenous hapten application produce a suppressive component that inhibits the action of the effector T cells that mediate contact sensitivity reactions. We recently re-investigated this phenomenon in an immunological system. CD8+ T lymphocyte-derived exosomes transferred suppressive miR-150 to the effector T cells antigen-specifically due to exosome surface coat of antibody light chains made by B1a lymphocytes. Extracellular RNA (exRNA is protected from plasma RNases by carriage in exosomes or by chaperones. Exosome transfer of functional RNA to target cells is well described, whereas the mechanism of transfer of exRNA free of exosomes remains unclear. In the current study we describe extracellular miR-150, extracted from exosomes, yet still able to mediate antigen-specific suppression. We have determined that this was due to miR-150 association with antibody-coated exosomes produced by B1a cell companions of the effector T cells, which resulted in antigen-specific suppression of their function. Thus functional cell targeting by free exRNA can proceed by transfecting companion cell exosomes that then transfer RNA cargo to the acceptor cells. This contrasts with the classical view on release of RNA-containing exosomes from the multivesicular bodies for subsequent intercellular targeting. This new alternate pathway for transfer of exRNA between cells has distinct biological and immunological significance, and since most human blood exRNA is not in exosomes may be relevant to evaluation and treatment of diseases.

  9. Progress in Karl Fischer coulometry using diaphragm-free cells. (United States)

    Cedergren, A; Jonsson, S


    Different designs of a semiopen, drainable cathode compartment of a medium-sized coulometric Karl Fischer (KF) cell for the determination of water in the range 0.1-500 microg were evaluated. The main criterion for the design was to keep the resistance between the anolyte and catholyte low enough to permit the generation of currents larger than 20 mA (for an output voltage of 28 V). It was found that a good compromise between the size of this current and a minimal influence from diffusing/migrating oxidizable reduction products from the catholyte was achieved by means of an interface having a channel length and diameter of 8 and 2.1 mm, respectively (catholyte volume, approximately 1 mL). To show the general applicability of the concept, the following different types of coulometric reagents suitable for nonpolar and polar samples, as well as for samples containing active carbonyl compounds, were investigated: Hydranal Coulomat A, AD, AK, AG-H (modified with chloroform, Merck), and two homemade methanolic reagents modified with 40% (v/v) chloroform and 50% (v/v) formamide, respectively. Except for Hydranal Coulomat A, the mean value of five consecutive titrations of 50 microg water did not deviate by more than 0.2% from the expected value for all reagents. Draining after every titration was sufficient to obtain accurate results, even for Coulomat A which, when used in the commercial diaphragm-free system of Metrohm, gave values which were about 10% too high. As compared to earlier reported results for diaphragm-free coulometry, the descibed modified cell represents a significant improvement, mainly because of the high accuracy achieved for all types of reagents.

  10. Trinucleotide repeat expansions catalyzed by human cell-free extracts

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jennifer R Stevens; Elaine E Lahue; Guo-Min Li; Robert S Lahue


    Trinucleotide repeat expansions cause 17 heritable human neurological disorders.In some diseases,somatic expansions occur in non-proliferating tissues such as brain where DNA replication is limited.This finding stimulated significant interest in replication-independent expansion mechanisms.Aberrant DNA repair is a likely source,based in part on mouse studies showing that somatic expansions are provoked by the DNA repair protein MutSβ (Msh2-Msh3complex).Biochemical studies to date used cell-free extracts or purified DNA repair proteins to yield partial reactions at triplet repeats.The findings included expansions on one strand but not the other,or processing of DNA hairpin structures thought to be important intermediates in the expansion process.However,it has been difficult to recapitulate complete expansions in vitro,and the biochemical role of MutSβ remains controversial.Here,we use a novel in vitro assay to show that human cell-free extracts catalyze expansions and contractions of trinucleotide repeats without the requirement for DNA replication.The extract promotes a size range of expansions that is similar to certain diseases,and triplet repeat length and sequence govern expansions in vitro as in vivo.MutSβ stimulates expansions in the extract,consistent with aberrant repair of endogenous DNA damage as a source of expansions.Overall,this biochemical system retains the key characteristics of somatic expansions in humans and mice,suggesting that this important mutagenic process can be restored in the test tube.

  11. Label-free quantitative cell division monitoring of endothelial cells by digital holographic microscopy (United States)

    Kemper, Björn; Bauwens, Andreas; Vollmer, Angelika; Ketelhut, Steffi; Langehanenberg, Patrik; Müthing, Johannes; Karch, Helge; von Bally, Gert


    Digital holographic microscopy (DHM) enables quantitative multifocus phase contrast imaging for nondestructive technical inspection and live cell analysis. Time-lapse investigations on human brain microvascular endothelial cells demonstrate the use of DHM for label-free dynamic quantitative monitoring of cell division of mother cells into daughter cells. Cytokinetic DHM analysis provides future applications in toxicology and cancer research.

  12. Integration-free iPS cells engineered using human artificial chromosome vectors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masaharu Hiratsuka

    Full Text Available Human artificial chromosomes (HACs have unique characteristics as gene-delivery vectors, including episomal transmission and transfer of multiple, large transgenes. Here, we demonstrate the advantages of HAC vectors for reprogramming mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs into induced pluripotent stem (iPS cells. Two HAC vectors (iHAC1 and iHAC2 were constructed. Both carried four reprogramming factors, and iHAC2 also encoded a p53-knockdown cassette. iHAC1 partially reprogrammed MEFs, and iHAC2 efficiently reprogrammed MEFs. Global gene expression patterns showed that the iHACs, unlike other vectors, generated relatively uniform iPS cells. Under non-selecting conditions, we established iHAC-free iPS cells by isolating cells that spontaneously lost iHAC2. Analyses of pluripotent markers, teratomas and chimeras confirmed that these iHAC-free iPS cells were pluripotent. Moreover, iHAC-free iPS cells with a re-introduced HAC encoding Herpes Simplex virus thymidine kinase were eliminated by ganciclovir treatment, indicating that the HAC safeguard system functioned in iPS cells. Thus, the HAC vector could generate uniform, integration-free iPS cells with a built-in safeguard system.

  13. In vitro selection of tRNAs for efficient four-base decoding to incorporate non-natural amino acids into proteins in an Escherichia coli cell-free translation system. (United States)

    Taira, Hikaru; Hohsaka, Takahiro; Sisido, Masahiko


    Position-specific incorporation of non-natural amino acids into proteins is a useful technique in protein engineering. In this study, we established a novel selection system to obtain tRNAs that show high decoding activity, from a tRNA library in a cell-free translation system to improve the efficiency of incorporation of non-natural amino acids into proteins. In this system, a puromycin-tRNA conjugate, in which the 3'-terminal A unit was replaced by puromycin, was used. The puromycin-tRNA conjugate was fused to a C-terminus of streptavidin through the puromycin moiety in the ribosome. The streptavidin-puromycin-tRNA fusion molecule was collected and brought to the next round after amplification of the tRNA sequence. We applied this system to select efficient frameshift suppressor tRNAs from a tRNA library with a randomly mutated anticodon loop derived from yeast tRNA CCCG Phe. After three rounds of the selection, we obtained novel frameshift suppressor tRNAs which had high decoding activity and good orthogonality against endogenous aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases. These results demonstrate that the in vitro selection system developed here is useful to obtain highly active tRNAs for the incorporation of non-natural amino acid from a tRNA library.

  14. Systems and methods for free space optical communication (United States)

    Harper, Warren W [Benton City, WA; Aker, Pamela M [Richland, WA; Pratt, Richard M [Richland, WA


    Free space optical communication methods and systems, according to various aspects are described. The methods and systems are characterized by transmission of data through free space with a digitized optical signal acquired using wavelength modulation, and by discrimination between bit states in the digitized optical signal using a spectroscopic absorption feature of a chemical substance.

  15. Cell-Free, De Nova Synthesis of Poliovirus (United States)

    Molla, Akhteruzzaman; Paul, Aniko V.; Wimmer, Eckard


    Cell-free translation of poliovirus RNA in an extract of uninfected human (HeLa) cells yielded viral proteins through proteolysis of the polyprotein. In the extract, newly synthesized proteins catalyzed poliovirus-specific RNA synthesis, and formed infectious poliovirus de novo. Newly formed virions were neutralized by type-specific antiserum, and infection of human cells with them was prevented by poliovirus receptor-specific antibodies. Poliovirus synthesis was increased nearly 70-fold when nucleoside triphosphates were added, but it was abolished in the presence of inhibitors of translation or viral genome replication. The ability to conduct cell-free synthesis of poliovirus will aid in the study of picornavirus proliferation and in the search for the control of picornaviral disease.

  16. Free-zone electrophoresis of animal cells. 1: Experiments on cell-cell interactions (United States)

    Todd, P. W.; Hjerten, S.


    The electrophoretically migrating zones wasa monitored. The absence of fluid flows in the direction of migration permits direct measurement of electrophoretic velocities of any material. Sedimentation is orthogonal to electrokinetic motion and the effects of particle-particle interaction on electrophoretic mobility is studied by free zone electrophoresis. Fixed erythrocytes at high concentrations, mixtures of fixed erythrocytes from different animal species, and mixtures of cultured human cells were studied in low ionic strength buffers. The electrophoretic velocity of fixed erythrocytes was not altered by increasing cell concentration or by the mixing of erythrocytes from different species. When zones containing cultured human glial cells and neuroblastoma cells are permitted to interact during electrophoresis, altered migration patterns occur. It is found that cell-cell interactions depends upon cell type.

  17. Controls to validate plasma samples for cell free DNA quantification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pallisgaard, Niels; Spindler, Karen-Lise Garm; Andersen, Rikke Fredslund;


    Recent research has focused on the utility of cell free DNA (cfDNA) in serum and plasma for clinical application, especially in oncology. The literature holds promise of cfDNA as a valuable tumour marker to be used for treatment selection, monitoring and follow-up. The results, however, are diver...

  18. Maintenance of human embryonic stem cells in animal serum- and feeder layer-free culture conditions. (United States)

    Amit, Michal; Itskovitz-Eldor, Joseph


    The availability of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) reflects their outstanding potential for research areas such as human developmental biology, teratology, and cell-based therapies. To allow their continuous growth as undifferentiated cells, isolation and culturing were traditionally conducted on mouse embryonic fibroblast feeder layers, using medium supplemented with fetal bovine serum. However, these conditions allow possible exposure of the cells to animal pathogens. Because both research and future clinical application require an animal-free and well-defined culture system for hESCs, these conventional conditions would prevent the use of hESCs in human therapy. This chapter describes optional culture conditions based on either animal-free or feeder-free culture methods for hESCs.

  19. Scale-Free Properties in Traffic System

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LI Ke-Ping


    In this work, we propose a new model of evolution networks, which is based on the evolution of the traffic flow. In our method, the network growth does not take into account preferential attachment, and the attachment of new node is independent of the degree of nodes. Our aim is that employing the theory of evolution network, we give a further understanding about the dynamical evolution of the traffic flow. We investigate the probability distributions and scaling properties of the proposed model. The simulation results indicate that in the proposed model, the distribution of the output connections can be well described by scale-free distribution. Moreover, the distribution of the connections is largely related to the traffic flow states, such as the exponential distribution (i.e., the scale-free distribution) and random distribution etc.

  20. Systems and Methods for Derivative-Free Adaptive Control (United States)

    Yucelen, Tansel (Inventor); Kim, Kilsoo (Inventor); Calise, Anthony J. (Inventor)


    An adaptive control system is disclosed. The control system can control uncertain dynamic systems. The control system can employ one or more derivative-free adaptive control architectures. The control system can further employ one or more derivative-free weight update laws. The derivative-free weight update laws can comprise a time-varying estimate of an ideal vector of weights. The control system of the present invention can therefore quickly stabilize systems that undergo sudden changes in dynamics, caused by, for example, sudden changes in weight. Embodiments of the present invention can also provide a less complex control system than existing adaptive control systems. The control system can control aircraft and other dynamic systems, such as, for example, those with non-minimum phase dynamics.

  1. Free Radical Production in Immune Cell Systems Induced by Ti, Ti6Al4V and SS Assessed by Chemiluminescence Probe Pholasin Assay

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra C. P. Cachinho


    Full Text Available The oxidative burst of human blood cells in the presence of different metal materials was investigated using chemiluminescence assay. Commercial pure titanium (Ti, titanium alloy (Ti6Al4V, and stainless steel 316L (SS in particulate form with <20 μm in size were used. The effect of particulate materials opsonisation on the upregulation of the respiratory burst production by blood cells was also assessed. The largest chemiluminescence response was achieved after simultaneous injection of the stimulants fMLP+PMA. Moreover, Ti and SS induced a greater inflammatory reaction compared to Ti6Al4V, since the respiratory burst mounted was higher for both materials after opsonisation treatment. These results suggest that in vitro chemiluminescence response and respiratory burst measurements proved to be composition and treatment dependent.

  2. Label-free classification of cultured cells through diffraction imaging. (United States)

    Dong, Ke; Feng, Yuanming; Jacobs, Kenneth M; Lu, Jun Q; Brock, R Scott; Yang, Li V; Bertrand, Fred E; Farwell, Mary A; Hu, Xin-Hua


    Automated classification of biological cells according to their 3D morphology is highly desired in a flow cytometer setting. We have investigated this possibility experimentally and numerically using a diffraction imaging approach. A fast image analysis software based on the gray level co-occurrence matrix (GLCM) algorithm has been developed to extract feature parameters from measured diffraction images. The results of GLCM analysis and subsequent classification demonstrate the potential for rapid classification among six types of cultured cells. Combined with numerical results we show that the method of diffraction imaging flow cytometry has the capacity as a platform for high-throughput and label-free classification of biological cells.

  3. Production of neo-fructooligosaccharides using free-whole-cell biotransformation by Xanthophyllomyces dendrorhous. (United States)

    Ning, Yawei; Wang, Jinpeng; Chen, Jing; Yang, Na; Jin, Zhengyu; Xu, Xueming


    The effects of production parameters on the biotransformation of sucrose were investigated to enhance the yield of neo-FOS by Xanthophyllomyce dendrorhous cells. Cells showed optimal beta-fructofuranosidase activity at neutral pH condition and the yield of neo-FOS showed no significant differences between buffer and buffer-free systems. Cell concentration negatively affected the maximum neo-FOS yield. Sucrose concentration positively increased the maximum yield of neo-FOS. Elevating the reaction temperature to 30 degrees C, the neo-FOS productivity increased 1.85-fold compared with that at 20 degrees C. Meanwhile, cell age of 32 h enabled the biotransformation of sucrose more efficiently. In addition, free cells exhibited a higher productivity over immobilized cells. The maximum neo-FOS concentration finally reached 227.72 g/l from 400 g/l sucrose under the optimal conditions.

  4. Modular PEM Fuel Cell SCADA & Simulator System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisca Segura


    Full Text Available The paper presents a Supervision, Control, Data Acquisition and Simulation (SCADA & Simulator system that allows for real-time training in the actual operation of a modular PEM fuel cell system. This SCADA & Simulator system consists of a free software tool that operates in real time and simulates real situations like failures and breakdowns in the system. This developed SCADA & Simulator system allows us to properly operate a fuel cell and helps us to understand how fuel cells operate and what devices are needed to configure and run the fuel cells, from the individual stack up to the whole fuel cell system. The SCADA & Simulator system governs a modular system integrated by three PEM fuel cells achieving power rates higher than tens of kilowatts.

  5. Facts on the fragmentation of antigens in presenting cells, on the association of antigen fragments with MHC molecules in cell-free systems, and speculation on the cell biology of antigen processing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Werdelin, O; Mouritsen, S; Petersen, B L;


    The processing of a protein antigen is a multi-step event taking place in antigen-presenting cells. Processing is a prerequisite for the recognition of most antigens by T lymphocytes. The antigen is ingested by endocytosis, transported to an acid cellular compartment and subjected to proteolytic ...

  6. Characterizing and prototyping genetic networks with cell-free transcription-translation reactions. (United States)

    Takahashi, Melissa K; Hayes, Clarmyra A; Chappell, James; Sun, Zachary Z; Murray, Richard M; Noireaux, Vincent; Lucks, Julius B


    A central goal of synthetic biology is to engineer cellular behavior by engineering synthetic gene networks for a variety of biotechnology and medical applications. The process of engineering gene networks often involves an iterative 'design-build-test' cycle, whereby the parts and connections that make up the network are built, characterized and varied until the desired network function is reached. Many advances have been made in the design and build portions of this cycle. However, the slow process of in vivo characterization of network function often limits the timescale of the testing step. Cell-free transcription-translation (TX-TL) systems offer a simple and fast alternative to performing these characterizations in cells. Here we provide an overview of a cell-free TX-TL system that utilizes the native Escherichia coli TX-TL machinery, thereby allowing a large repertoire of parts and networks to be characterized. As a way to demonstrate the utility of cell-free TX-TL, we illustrate the characterization of two genetic networks: an RNA transcriptional cascade and a protein regulated incoherent feed-forward loop. We also provide guidelines for designing TX-TL experiments to characterize new genetic networks. We end with a discussion of current and emerging applications of cell free systems.

  7. Surface free energy for systems with integrable boundary conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Goehmann, Frank [Fachbereich C-Physik, Bergische Universitaet Wuppertal, 42097 Wuppertal (Germany); Bortz, Michael [Department of Theoretical Physics, Australian National University, Canberra ACT 0200 (Australia); Frahm, Holger [Institut fuer Theoretische Physik, Universitaet Hannover, 30167 Hannover (Germany)


    The surface free energy is the difference between the free energies for a system with open boundary conditions and the same system with periodic boundary conditions. We use the quantum transfer matrix formalism to express the surface free energy in the thermodynamic limit of systems with integrable boundary conditions as a matrix element of certain projection operators. Specializing to the XXZ spin-1/2 chain we introduce a novel 'finite temperature boundary operator' which characterizes the thermodynamical properties of surfaces related to integrable boundary conditions.

  8. GPS-Aided Gyroscope-Free Inertial Navigation Systems


    Park, Sungsu; Tan, Chin-Woo


    A gyroscope-free inertial navigation system uses only accelerometers to compute navigation trajectories. It is a low-cost navigation system, but its output error diverges at a rate that is an order faster than that of a conventional gyroscope-based system. So integration with an external reference system, such as the Global Positioning System, is necessary for long-term navigation applications. In this pa-per, an integrated GPS and gyroscope-free INS system is designed to achieve stable long-...

  9. Thermometry in dielectrophoresis chips for contact-free cell handling (United States)

    Jaeger, M. S.; Mueller, T.; Schnelle, T.


    Cell biology applications, protocols in immunology and stem cell research, require that individual cells are handled under strict control of their contacts to other cells or synthetic surfaces. Dielectrophoresis (DEP) in microfluidic chips is an established technique to investigate, group, wash, cultivate and sort cells contact-free under physiological conditions: microelectrode octode cages, versatile dielectrophoretic elements energized with radio frequency electric fields, stably trap single cells or cellular aggregates. For medical applications and cell cultivation, possible side effects of the dielectrophoretic manipulation, such as membrane polarization and Joule heating, have to be quantified. Therefore, we characterized the electric field-induced warming in dielectrophoretic cages using ohmic resistance measurements, fluorometry, liquid crystal beads, infra-red thermography and bubble size thermometry. We compare the results of these techniques with respect to the influences of voltage, electric conductivity of buffer, frequency, cage size and electrode surface. We conclude that in the culture medium thermal effects may be neglected if low voltages and an electric field-reducing phase pattern are used. Our experimental results provide explicit values for estimating the thermal effect on dielectrophoretically caged cells and show that Joule heating is best minimized by optimizing the cage geometry and reducing the buffer conductivity. The results may additionally serve to evaluate and improve theoretical predictions on field-induced effects. Based on present-day chip processing possibilities, DEP is well suited for the manipulation of cells.

  10. Cell-free synthesis of membrane proteins: tailored cell models out of microsomes. (United States)

    Fenz, Susanne F; Sachse, Rita; Schmidt, Thomas; Kubick, Stefan


    Incorporation of proteins in biomimetic giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) is one of the hallmarks towards cell models in which we strive to obtain a better mechanistic understanding of the manifold cellular processes. The reconstruction of transmembrane proteins, like receptors or channels, into GUVs is a special challenge. This procedure is essential to make these proteins accessible to further functional investigation. Here we describe a strategy combining two approaches: cell-free eukaryotic protein expression for protein integration and GUV formation to prepare biomimetic cell models. The cell-free protein expression system in this study is based on insect lysates, which provide endoplasmic reticulum derived vesicles named microsomes. It enables signal-induced translocation and posttranslational modification of de novo synthesized membrane proteins. Combining these microsomes with synthetic lipids within the electroswelling process allowed for the rapid generation of giant proteo-liposomes of up to 50 μm in diameter. We incorporated various fluorescent protein-labeled membrane proteins into GUVs (the prenylated membrane anchor CAAX, the heparin-binding epithelial growth factor like factor Hb-EGF, the endothelin receptor ETB, the chemokine receptor CXCR4) and thus presented insect microsomes as functional modules for proteo-GUV formation. Single-molecule fluorescence microscopy was applied to detect and further characterize the proteins in the GUV membrane. To extend the options in the tailoring cell models toolbox, we synthesized two different membrane proteins sequentially in the same microsome. Additionally, we introduced biotinylated lipids to specifically immobilize proteo-GUVs on streptavidin-coated surfaces. We envision this achievement as an important first step toward systematic protein studies on technical surfaces.

  11. Functionalized nanopipettes: toward label-free, single cell biosensors. (United States)

    Actis, Paolo; Mak, Andy C; Pourmand, Nader


    Nanopipette technology has been proven to be a label-free biosensor capable of identifying DNA and proteins. The nanopipette can include specific recognition elements for analyte discrimination based on size, shape, and charge density. The fully electrical read-out and the ease and low-cost fabrication are unique features that give this technology an enormous potential. Unlike other biosensing platforms, nanopipettes can be precisely manipulated with submicron accuracy and used to study single cell dynamics. This review is focused on creative applications of nanopipette technology for biosensing. We highlight the potential of this technology with a particular attention to integration of this biosensor with single cell manipulation platforms.

  12. Optical free-space wavelength-division-multiplexing transport system. (United States)

    Lin, Chun-Yu; Lin, Ying-Pyng; Lu, Hai-Han; Chen, Chia-Yi; Jhang, Tai-Wei; Chen, Min-Chou


    An optical free-space wavelength-division-multiplexing (WDM) transport system employing vertical cavity surface emitting lasers and spatial light modulators with 16-quadrature amplitude modulation orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing modulating signals over a 17.5 m free-space link is proposed and demonstrated. With the help of a low-noise amplifier and data comparator, good bit error rate performance is obtained for each optical channel. Such an optical free-space WDM transport system would be attractive for providing services including data and telecommunication services.

  13. Mesenchymal Stem Cell-Derived Exosomes: New Opportunity in Cell-Free Therapy (United States)

    Pashoutan Sarvar, Davod; Shamsasenjan, Karim; Akbarzadehlaleh, Parvin


    Mesenchymal stromal/stem cells (MSCs) are involved in tissue homeostasis through direct cell-to-cell interaction, as well as secretion of soluble factors. Exosomes are the sort of soluble biological mediators that obtained from MSCs cultured media in vitro. MSC-derived exosomes (MSC-DEs) which produced under physiological or pathological conditions are central mediators of intercellular communications by conveying proteins, lipids, mRNAs, siRNA, ribosomal RNAs and miRNAs to the neighbor or distant cells. MSC-DEs have been tested in various disease models, and the results have revealed that their functions are similar to those of MSCs. They have the supportive functions in organisms such as repairing tissue damages, suppressing inflammatory responses, and modulating the immune system. MSC-DEs are of great interest in the scope of regenerative medicine because of their unique capacity to the regeneration of the damaged tissues, and the present paper aims to introduce MSC-DEs as a novel hope in cell-free therapy.

  14. Systems cell biology. (United States)

    Mast, Fred D; Ratushny, Alexander V; Aitchison, John D


    Systems cell biology melds high-throughput experimentation with quantitative analysis and modeling to understand many critical processes that contribute to cellular organization and dynamics. Recently, there have been several advances in technology and in the application of modeling approaches that enable the exploration of the dynamic properties of cells. Merging technology and computation offers an opportunity to objectively address unsolved cellular mechanisms, and has revealed emergent properties and helped to gain a more comprehensive and fundamental understanding of cell biology.

  15. Ammonia-Free NOx Control System

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Song Wu; Zhen Fan; Andrew H. Seltzer; Richard G. Herman


    Research is being conducted under United States Department of Energy (DOE) Contract DE-FC26-03NT41865 to develop a new technology to achieve very low levels of NOx emissions from pulverized coal fired boiler systems by employing a novel system level integration between the PC combustion process and the catalytic NOx reduction with CO present in the combustion flue gas. The combustor design and operating conditions will be optimized to achieve atypical flue gas conditions. This approach will not only suppress NOx generation during combustion but also further reduce NOx over a downstream catalytic reactor that does not require addition of an external reductant, such as ammonia.

  16. Sequestration of Reactive Blue 4 by free and immobilized Bacillus subtilis cells and its extracellular polysaccharides. (United States)

    Binupriya, Arthur Raj; Sathishkumar, Muthuswamy; Ku, Chang Sub; Yun, Soon-Il


    Bacillus subtilis a gram positive bacteria and its extracellular polysaccharide were used in free form as well as immobilized form as biosorbent for sequestration of an anionic dye, Reactive Blue 4 (RB) in aqueous phase. The dye uptake enhanced with decrease in pH. Extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) and free cells were found to be better adsorbents when compared to alginate immobilized cells (IC) and EPS (IEPS). The presence of functional groups in free cells and EPS was confirmed by FT-IR analysis. Immobilization resulted in poor adsorption performance due to increase in mass transfer resistance by the polymeric matrix. High Q(max) and b values were noted in the case of free cells and free EPS in contrast to IC and IEPS. From the kinetic experiments, the adsorption system was found to be a pseudo-first-order reaction at low dye concentration. Desorption of RB was found to be 100% in 1N NaOH. However, the alginate beads were found to be unstable under high alkaline conditions of NaOH.

  17. Isolation and characterization of Wharton’s jelly-derived multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells obtained from bovine umbilical cord and maintained in a defined serum-free three-dimensional system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cardoso Tereza C


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The possibility for isolating bovine mesenchymal multipotent cells (MSCs from fetal adnexa is an interesting prospect because of the potential for these cells to be used for biotechnological applications. Bone marrow and adipose tissue are the most common sources of MSCs derived from adult animals. However, little knowledge exists about the characteristics of these progenitors cells in the bovine species. Traditionally most cell cultures are developed in two dimensional (2D environments. In mammalian tissue, cells connect not only to each other, but also support structures called the extracellular matrix (ECM. The three-dimensional (3D cultures may play a potential role in cell biotechnology, especially in tissue therapy. In this study, bovine-derived umbilical cord Wharton’s jelly (UC-WJ cells were isolated, characterized and maintained under 3D-free serum condition as an alternative of stem cell source for future cell banking. Results Bovine-derived UC-WJ cells, collected individually from 5 different umbilical cords sources, were successfully cultured under serum-free conditions and were capable to support 60 consecutive passages using commercial Stemline® mesenchymal stem cells expansion medium. Moreover, the UC-WJ cells were differentiated into osteocytes, chondrocytes, adipocytes and neural-like cells and cultured separately. Additionally, the genes that are considered important embryonic, POU5F1 and ITSN1, and mesenchymal cell markers, CD105+, CD29+, CD73+ and CD90+ in MSCs were also expressed in five bovine-derived UC-WJ cultures. Morphology of proliferating cells typically appeared fibroblast-like spindle shape presenting the same viability and number. These characteristics were not affected during passages. There were 60 chromosomes at the metaphase, with acrocentric morphology and intense telomerase activity. Moreover, the proliferative capacity of T cells in response to a mitogen stimulus was suppressed when

  18. Free-Form Kinetic Reciprocal System

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Parigi, Dario; Sassone, Mario


    Kinetic Reciprocal System (KRS) are innovative moveable structures based on the principle of reciprocity [1] with internal pin-slot constraints [2]. The analysis of KRS kinematic and static determinacy is developed through the construction of kinematic matrices, accordingly with [3...

  19. Free positioning for inductive wireless power system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Waffenschmidt, E.


    In inductive wireless power transmission system a lateral displacement of the receiver coil to the transmitter coil leads to a change ofthe coupling factor and thus an unwanted variation of the power transfer. Here, an algorithm to determine the turn distribution to achieve homogeneous coupling betw

  20. Applications of cell-free protein synthesis in synthetic biology: Interfacing bio-machinery with synthetic environments. (United States)

    Lee, Kyung-Ho; Kim, Dong-Myung


    Synthetic biology is built on the synthesis, engineering, and assembly of biological parts. Proteins are the first components considered for the construction of systems with designed biological functions because proteins carry out most of the biological functions and chemical reactions inside cells. Protein synthesis is considered to comprise the most basic levels of the hierarchical structure of synthetic biology. Cell-free protein synthesis has emerged as a powerful technology that can potentially transform the concept of bioprocesses. With the ability to harness the synthetic power of biology without many of the constraints of cell-based systems, cell-free protein synthesis enables the rapid creation of protein molecules from diverse sources of genetic information. Cell-free protein synthesis is virtually free from the intrinsic constraints of cell-based methods and offers greater flexibility in system design and manipulability of biological synthetic machinery. Among its potential applications, cell-free protein synthesis can be combined with various man-made devices for rapid functional analysis of genomic sequences. This review covers recent efforts to integrate cell-free protein synthesis with various reaction devices and analytical platforms.

  1. Ammonia-Free NOx Control System

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    S. Wu; Z. Fan; R. Herman


    Research is being conducted under United States Department of Energy (DOE) Contract DEFC26-03NT41865 to develop a new technology to achieve very low levels of NOx emissions from pulverized coal fired boiler systems by employing a novel system level integration between the PC combustion process and the catalytic NOx reduction with CO present in the combustion flue gas. The combustor design and operating conditions will be optimized to achieve atypical flue gas conditions. This approach will not only suppress NOx generation during combustion but also further reduce NOx over a downstream catalytic reactor that does not require addition of an external reductant, such as ammonia. This report describes the work performed during the January 1 to March 31, 2004 time period.

  2. Ammonia-Free NOx Control System

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    S. Wu


    Research is being conducted under United States Department of Energy (DOE) Contract DEFC26-03NT41865 to develop a new technology to achieve very low levels of NOx emissions from pulverized coal fired boiler systems by employing a novel system level integration between the PC combustion process and the catalytic NOx reduction with CO present in the combustion flue gas. The combustor design and operating conditions will be optimized to achieve atypical flue gas conditions. This approach will not only suppress NOx generation during combustion but also further reduce NOx over a downstream catalytic reactor that does not require addition of an external reductant, such as ammonia. This report describes the work performed during the October 1 to December 31, 2003 time period.

  3. Scaffold Free Bio-orthogonal Assembly of 3-Dimensional Cardiac Tissue via Cell Surface Engineering (United States)

    Rogozhnikov, Dmitry; O’Brien, Paul J.; Elahipanah, Sina; Yousaf, Muhammad N.


    There has been tremendous interest in constructing in vitro cardiac tissue for a range of fundamental studies of cardiac development and disease and as a commercial system to evaluate therapeutic drug discovery prioritization and toxicity. Although there has been progress towards studying 2-dimensional cardiac function in vitro, there remain challenging obstacles to generate rapid and efficient scaffold-free 3-dimensional multiple cell type co-culture cardiac tissue models. Herein, we develop a programmed rapid self-assembly strategy to induce specific and stable cell-cell contacts among multiple cell types found in heart tissue to generate 3D tissues through cell-surface engineering based on liposome delivery and fusion to display bio-orthogonal functional groups from cell membranes. We generate, for the first time, a scaffold free and stable self assembled 3 cell line co-culture 3D cardiac tissue model by assembling cardiomyocytes, endothelial cells and cardiac fibroblast cells via a rapid inter-cell click ligation process. We compare and analyze the function of the 3D cardiac tissue chips with 2D co-culture monolayers by assessing cardiac specific markers, electromechanical cell coupling, beating rates and evaluating drug toxicity.

  4. Cell-free synthesis of functional thermostable direct hemolysins of Vibrio parahaemolyticus. (United States)

    Bechlars, Silke; Wüstenhagen, Doreen A; Drägert, Katja; Dieckmann, Ralf; Strauch, Eckhard; Kubick, Stefan


    Vibrio parahaemolyticus is a recognized enteropathogen causing diarrhea in humans and is one of the major causes of seafoodborne gastroenteritis. An important virulence factor is thermostable direct hemolysin (TDH), a pore-forming toxin, which is able to lyse eukaryotic cells. The active toxin is a tetramer of four identical protein subunits, which is secreted by the pathogen after cleavage of a signal peptide. To establish diagnostic detection systems for TDH we expressed the hemolysin with and without the signal peptide in a prokaryotic cell-free system to obtain pure toxin. In order to purify and to facilitate the isolation from cell lysates we synthesized TDH variants with different tags. Important regulatory sequences for cell-free protein synthesis as well as sequences for N-terminal Strep-tag and C-terminal 6xHis-tag were added by a two-step PCR. For the expression in the cell-free system these linear tdh templates were subjected directly to prokaryotic cell extracts. Protein yields were in the range of 500-600 μg/ml for the preproteins and approx. 300-400 μg/ml for the mature proteins. The identities of expressed proteins were further confirmed by SDS-PAGE, immunological and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometric analyses. The functionality of newly synthesized toxin variants was tested by performing qualitative and semiquantitative hemolysis assays. Cell-free produced mature TDH and its variants were active while the preprotein and its derivatives lacked hemolytic activity. A C-terminal 6xHis-tag showed less influence on functionality compared to the N-terminal Strep-tag.

  5. A free energy satisfying discontinuous Galerkin method for one-dimensional Poisson-Nernst-Planck systems (United States)

    Liu, Hailiang; Wang, Zhongming


    We design an arbitrary-order free energy satisfying discontinuous Galerkin (DG) method for solving time-dependent Poisson-Nernst-Planck systems. Both the semi-discrete and fully discrete DG methods are shown to satisfy the corresponding discrete free energy dissipation law for positive numerical solutions. Positivity of numerical solutions is enforced by an accuracy-preserving limiter in reference to positive cell averages. Numerical examples are presented to demonstrate the high resolution of the numerical algorithm and to illustrate the proven properties of mass conservation, free energy dissipation, as well as the preservation of steady states.

  6. Suitability of Cell-Based Label-Free Detection for Cytotoxicity Screening of Carbon Nanotubes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Meindl


    Full Text Available Cytotoxicity testing of nanoparticles (NPs by conventional screening assays is often complicated by interference. Carbon nanotubes (CNTs are particularly difficult to assess. To test the suitability of cell-based label-free techniques for this application, a panel of CNTs with different diameters and surface functionalizations was assessed by impedance-based technique (xCELLigence RTCA and automated microscopy (Cell-IQ compared to formazan bioreduction (MTS assay. For validation of the label-free systems different concentrations of ethanol and of amine (AMI polystyrene NPs were used. CNTs were evaluated in various cell lines, but only endothelial EAhy926 cells and L929 and V79 fibroblasts could be evaluated in all systems. Polystyrene particles obtained similar results in all assays. All systems identified thin (20 nm CNTs, but detection by xCELLigence system was less sensitive to CNT-induced cytotoxicity. Despite advantages, such as continuous monitoring and more detailed analysis of cytotoxic effects, label-free techniques cannot be generally recommended for cytotoxicity screening of NPs.

  7. Interaction-free evolving states of a bipartite system (United States)

    Napoli, A.; Guccione, M.; Messina, A.; Chruściński, D.


    We show that two interacting physical systems may admit entangled pure or nonseparable mixed states evolving in time as if the mutual interaction Hamiltonian were absent. In this paper we define these interaction-free evolving (IFE) states and characterize their existence for a generic binary system described by a time-independent Hamiltonian. A comparison between IFE subspace and the decoherence-free subspace is reported. The set of all pure IFE states is explicitly constructed for a nonhomogeneous spin-star-system model

  8. Cryopreservation of cells using defined serum-free cryoprotective agents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Volbers Jan-Cedric


    Full Text Available For regenerative purposes, there is a high demand for viable and active cells. A big issue is to have enough viable cells available at any given time. One solution is cryopreservation. In this context, DMSO is used as cryoprotective agent (CPA along with fetal bovine serum for nutrient supply and stress shielding effects. To use these cells for human clinical studies, it is important to eliminate the serum to prevent foreign immune reactions and virus transmittance and DMSO for its toxic effect. In this study a serum free cryopreservation solution and protocol has been established. The combination of methylcellulose and poloxamer 188 provide the basis for the new CPA. Other additves are α-tocopherol, ectoine, prolin and ascorbic acid. The CPAs were examined with 3T3-cells and multipotent stromal cells from the common marmoset monkey (Callithrix jacchus. The cells were preserved with various CPA concentrations, incubation times and different cooling rates. To enable a higher throughput of encouraging conditions a fluorescence microscopy analysis was used. The use of methylcellulose, poloxamer 188 and α-tocopherol enables the reduction of DMSO [up to 2.5% (v/v] and the elimination of serum without viability losses compared to control.

  9. Bcc crystal-fluid interfacial free energy in Yukawa systems. (United States)

    Heinonen, V; Mijailović, A; Achim, C V; Ala-Nissila, T; Rozas, R E; Horbach, J; Löwen, H


    We determine the orientation-resolved interfacial free energy between a body-centered-cubic (bcc) crystal and the coexisting fluid for a many-particle system interacting via a Yukawa pair potential. For two different screening strengths, we compare results from molecular dynamics computer simulations, density functional theory, and a phase-field-crystal approach. Simulations predict an almost orientationally isotropic interfacial free energy of 0.12k(B)T/a(2) (with k(B)T denoting the thermal energy and a the mean interparticle spacing), which is independent of the screening strength. This value is in reasonable agreement with our Ramakrishnan-Yussouff density functional calculations, while a high-order fitted phase-field-crystal approach gives about 2-3 times higher interfacial free energies for the Yukawa system. Both field theory approaches also give a considerable anisotropy of the interfacial free energy. Our result implies that, in the Yukawa system, bcc crystal-fluid free energies are a factor of about 3 smaller than face-centered-cubic crystal-fluid free energies.

  10. Derivation of stable zebrafish ES-like cells in feeder-free culture. (United States)

    Hong, Ni; Schartl, Manfred; Hong, Yunhan


    Zebrafish offers an excellent opportunity to combine embryological, genetic and molecular analyses of vertebrate development in vivo. Embryonic stem (ES) cells have enormous potential to study developmental potency and differentiation in vitro and thus to complement in vivo approaches. Zebrafish ES-like cells have been produced on a feeder cell layer. Here, we report the derivation of Z428, a zebrafish ES-like cell line, from blastula embryos in feeder-free culture. Fetal bovine serum, fish serum, fish embryo extract, basic fibroblast growth factor, non-essential amino acids and 2-mercaptoethanol were found to be important for Z428 growth. After more than 120 passages and many freezing/thawing cycles over a period of 20 years, Z428 exhibits stable growth and manifests many ES cell features including an ES cell phenotype, high alkaline phosphatase activity and spontaneous differentiation in culture. Most importantly, Z428 was transplantable to blastula hosts and capable of contributing to embryonic tissues and organ systems of the three germ layers. Therefore, Z428 is a stable cell line and contains ES-like cells with pluripotency in vitro and in vivo, and a feeder layer is dispensable for ES-like cell derivation in zebrafish. The derivation and easy maintenance of zebrafish ES-like cells under feeder-free conditions provide a useful extension of the present toolbox for studying development and differentiation in the zebrafish model.

  11. Study on Vehicle Hands Free System With Bluetooth

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    JIN Xuexin; DONG Guiju; GAO Yanxu; CUI Tianshi


    In this paper,the appfication of bluetooth in vehicle hands free system was described,then the hardware and software structure of system had been designed.Finally,selection about electron parts and chip of electronic equipments was presented in detail.

  12. In Vitro Evolution of Bovine Foamy Virus Variants with Enhanced Cell-Free Virus Titers and Transmission. (United States)

    Bao, Qiuying; Hipp, Michaela; Hugo, Annette; Lei, Janet; Liu, Yang; Kehl, Timo; Hechler, Torsten; Löchelt, Martin


    Virus transmission is essential for spreading viral infections and is a highly coordinated process which occurs by cell-free transmission or cell-cell contact. The transmission of Bovine Foamy Virus (BFV) is highly cell-associated, with undetectable cell-free transmission. However, BFV particle budding can be induced by overexpression of wild-type (wt) BFV Gag and Env or artificial retargeting of Gag to the plasma membrane via myristoylation membrane targeting signals, closely resembling observations in other foamy viruses. Thus, the particle release machinery of wt BFV appears to be an excellent model system to study viral adaption to cell-free transmission by in vitro selection and evolution. Using selection for BFV variants with high cell-free infectivity in bovine and non-bovine cells, infectivity dramatically increased from almost no infectious units to about 105-106 FFU (fluorescent focus forming units)/mL in both cell types. Importantly, the selected BFV variants with high titer (HT) cell-free infectivity could still transmit via cell-cell contacts and were neutralized by serum from naturally infected cows. These selected HT-BFV variants will shed light into virus transmission and potential routes of intervention in the spread of viral infections. It will also allow the improvement or development of new promising approaches for antiretroviral therapies.

  13. Label-free isolation and deposition of single bacterial cells from heterogeneous samples for clonal culturing (United States)

    Riba, J.; Gleichmann, T.; Zimmermann, S.; Zengerle, R.; Koltay, P.


    The isolation and analysis of single prokaryotic cells down to 1 μm and less in size poses a special challenge and requires micro-engineered devices to handle volumes in the picoliter to nanoliter range. Here, an advanced Single-Cell Printer (SCP) was applied for automated and label-free isolation and deposition of bacterial cells encapsulated in 35 pl droplets by inkjet-like printing. To achieve this, dispenser chips to generate micro droplets have been fabricated with nozzles 20 μm in size. Further, the magnification of the optical system used for cell detection was increased. Redesign of the optical path allows for collision-free addressing of any flat substrate since no compartment protrudes below the nozzle of the dispenser chip anymore. The improved system allows for deterministic isolation of individual bacterial cells. A single-cell printing efficiency of 93% was obtained as shown by printing fluorescent labeled E. coli. A 96-well plate filled with growth medium is inoculated with single bacteria cells on average within about 8 min. Finally, individual bacterial cells from a heterogeneous sample of E. coli and E. faecalis were isolated for clonal culturing directly on agar plates in user-defined array geometry.

  14. Current Collecting Grids for ITO-Free Solar Cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Galagan, Yulia; Zimmermann, Birger; Coenen, Erica W. C.


    Indium-tin-oxide (ITO) free polymer solar cells prepared by ink jet printing a composite front electrode comprising silver grid lines and a semitransparent PEDOT:PSS conductor are demonstrated. The effect of grid line density is explored for a large series of devices and a careful modeling study...... enabling the identification of the most rational grid structure is presented. Both optical and light beam induced current (LBIC) mapping of the devices are used to support the power loss model and to follow the evolution of the performance over time. Current generation is found to be evenly distributed...

  15. Cell-free DNA screening and sex chromosome aneuploidies. (United States)

    Mennuti, Michael T; Chandrasekaran, Suchitra; Khalek, Nahla; Dugoff, Lorraine


    Cell-free DNA (cfDNA) testing is increasingly being used to screen pregnant women for fetal aneuploidies. This technology may also identify fetal sex and can be used to screen for sex chromosome aneuploidies (SCAs). Physicians offering this screening will need to be prepared to offer comprehensive prenatal counseling about these disorders to an increasing number of patients. The purpose of this article is to consider the source of information to use for counseling, factors in parental decision-making, and the performance characteristics of cfDNA testing in screening for SCAs. Discordance between ultrasound examination and cfDNA results regarding fetal sex is also discussed.

  16. Cell Radiation Experiment System (United States)

    Morrison, Dennis R.


    The cell radiation experiment system (CRES) is a perfused-cell culture apparatus, within which cells from humans or other animals can (1) be maintained in homeostasis while (2) being exposed to ionizing radiation during controlled intervals and (3) being monitored to determine the effects of radiation and the repair of radiation damage. The CRES can be used, for example, to determine effects of drug, radiation, and combined drug and radiation treatments on both normal and tumor cells. The CRES can also be used to analyze the effects of radiosensitive or radioprotectant drugs on cells subjected to radiation. The knowledge gained by use of the CRES is expected to contribute to the development of better cancer treatments and of better protection for astronauts, medical-equipment operators, and nuclear-power-plant workers, and others exposed frequently to ionizing radiation.

  17. Multichannel lens-free CMOS sensors for real-time monitoring of cell growth. (United States)

    Chang, Ko-Tung; Chang, Yu-Jen; Chen, Chia-Ling; Wang, Yao-Nan


    A low-cost platform is proposed for the growth and real-time monitoring of biological cells. The main components of the platform include a PMMA cell culture microchip and a multichannel lens-free CMOS (complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor) / LED imaging system. The PMMA microchip comprises a three-layer structure and is fabricated using a low-cost CO2 laser ablation technique. The CMOS / LED monitoring system is controlled using a self-written LabVIEW program. The platform has overall dimensions of just 130 × 104 × 115 mm(3) and can therefore be placed within a commercial incubator. The feasibility of the proposed system is demonstrated using HepG2 cancer cell samples with concentrations of 5000, 10 000, 20 000, and 40 000 cells/mL. In addition, cell cytotoxicity tests are performed using 8, 16, and 32 mM cyclophosphamide. For all of the experiments, the cell growth is observed over a period of 48 h. The cell growth rate is found to vary in the range of 44∼52% under normal conditions and from 17.4∼34.5% under cyclophosphamide-treated conditions. In general, the results confirm the long-term cell growth and real-time monitoring ability of the proposed system. Moreover, the magnification provided by the lens-free CMOS / LED observation system is around 40× that provided by a traditional microscope. Consequently, the proposed system has significant potential for long-term cell proliferation and cytotoxicity evaluation investigations.

  18. Acrolein and chloroacetaldehyde: an examination of the cell and cell-free biomarkers of toxicity. (United States)

    MacAllister, Stephanie L; Martin-Brisac, Nicolas; Lau, Vincent; Yang, Kai; O'Brien, Peter J


    Cyclophosphamide and ifosfamide are two commonly used DNA-alkylating agents in cancer chemotherapy that undergo biotransformation to several toxic and non-toxic metabolites, including acrolein and chloroacetaldehyde (CAA). Acrolein and CAA toxicities occur by several different mechanisms, including ROS formation and protein damage (oxidation), however, these pathways of toxicity and protecting agents used to prevent them have yet to be compared and ranked in a single study. This research focused on the molecular targets of acrolein and CAA toxicities and strategies to decrease toxicities. Hepatocyte viability (cytotoxicity) was assessed using Trypan blue uptake; formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and endogenous H2O2 were also assessed in the hepatocyte model. In cell-free models (bovine serum albumin and hepatic microsomes), protein carbonylation was the measurement of toxicity. The present study demonstrated that acrolein was a more potent toxin than CAA for freshly isolated rat hepatocytes, bovine serum albumin and rat hepatic microsomes. Acrolein protein carbonylation was dependent on its concentration; as acrolein concentration increased, protein carbonylation increased in a linear trend, whereas, CAA deviated from the trend and did not cause protein carbonylation at lower concentrations (acrolein-treated hepatocytes. The overall effectiveness of protecting agents to prevent or suppress acrolein or CAA toxicities in cell and cell-free models were ranked in order of most effective to least effective: reducing agents (sodium borohydride, sodium bisulfite)>thiol-containing compounds (N-acetylcysteine, cysteine, glutathione, 2-mercaptoethane sulfonate [MESNA], penicillamine)>carbonyl scavengers/amines (aminoguanidine, hydralazine, hydroxylamine)>antioxidants/ROS scavengers (ascorbic acid, Trolox; only utilized in hepatocyte system). An understanding of acrolein and CAA toxicities and the ability of protecting agents to protect against toxicities may help to

  19. Elevated Concentrations of Serum Immunoglobulin Free Light Chains in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Patients in Relation to Disease Activity, Inflammatory Status, B Cell Activity and Epstein-Barr Virus Antibodies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Draborg, Anette H; Lydolph, Magnus; Westergaard, Marie


    OBJECTIVE: In this study, we examined the concentration of serum immunoglobulin free light chains (FLCs) in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) patients and investigated its association with various disease parameters in order to evaluate the role of FLCs as a potential biomarker in SLE. Furthermore...

  20. Trypsin promotes C6 glioma cell proliferation in serum- and growth factor-free medium. (United States)

    Amano, H; Kurosaka, R; Ema, M; Ogawa, Y


    C6 glioma cells could be successively subcultured and maintained in serum- and growth factor-free medium (SF/GFF medium). C6 cell proliferation in SF/GFF medium was positively correlated with the initial cell density at plating. This correlation disappeared when the medium had been renewed early after cell adhesion (3 h after plating), suggesting that C6 cell growth depends on some diffusible factor in the medium before renewal, and that this factor is not secreted from C6 cells in the assay culture but is transferred from the cell suspension. The supernatant of trypsinized C6 cell suspension (SCS), trypsin-EDTA solution for routine cell harvesting use, and modified trypsin of protein sequencing grade all promoted C6 cell proliferation at, appropriate dilutions or concentrations under SF/GFF conditions. The growth promoting effects of SCS and trypsin-EDTA solution were completely inhibited by soybean trypsin inhibitor. These results demonstrate that the serine protease trypsin has a proliferative effect on C6 cells continuously subcultured in SF/GFF medium. In addition, it is suggested that trypsin used for cell dispersion is transferred from cell suspension into the culture, where it promotes C6 cell growth after passage in our SF/GFF subculture system.

  1. Conformational antibody binding to a native, cell-free expressed GPCR in block copolymer membranes. (United States)

    de Hoog, Hans-Peter M; Lin JieRong, Esther M; Banerjee, Sourabh; Décaillot, Fabien M; Nallani, Madhavan


    G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) play a key role in physiological processes and are attractive drug targets. Their biophysical characterization is, however, highly challenging because of their innate instability outside a stabilizing membrane and the difficulty of finding a suitable expression system. We here show the cell-free expression of a GPCR, CXCR4, and its direct embedding in diblock copolymer membranes. The polymer-stabilized CXCR4 is readily immobilized onto biosensor chips for label-free binding analysis. Kinetic characterization using a conformationally sensitive antibody shows the receptor to exist in the correctly folded conformation, showing binding behaviour that is commensurate with heterologously expressed CXCR4.

  2. Conformational antibody binding to a native, cell-free expressed GPCR in block copolymer membranes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hans-Peter M de Hoog

    Full Text Available G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs play a key role in physiological processes and are attractive drug targets. Their biophysical characterization is, however, highly challenging because of their innate instability outside a stabilizing membrane and the difficulty of finding a suitable expression system. We here show the cell-free expression of a GPCR, CXCR4, and its direct embedding in diblock copolymer membranes. The polymer-stabilized CXCR4 is readily immobilized onto biosensor chips for label-free binding analysis. Kinetic characterization using a conformationally sensitive antibody shows the receptor to exist in the correctly folded conformation, showing binding behaviour that is commensurate with heterologously expressed CXCR4.

  3. Transparent conducting oxide free backside illuminated perovskite solar cells (United States)

    Li, Jia; Yao, Jiexiong; Xia, Huarong; Sun, Wentao; Liu, Jian; Peng, Lianmao


    Recently, hybrid perovskites have attracted great attention because of their promising applications in solar cells. However, perovskite solar devices reported till now are mostly based on transparent conducting oxide (TCO) substrates which account for a large proportion in the total cost. Herein, TCO-free perovskite solar cells are fabricated. A photo-electricity conversion efficiency of 5.27% is obtained with short circuit current density (Jsc) of 10.7 mA/cm2, open circuit voltage (Voc) of 0.837 V, and fill factor of 0.588. This study points a feasible way of replacing TCO substrate by low cost substrates, indicating promising potentials in solar energy conversion applications.

  4. Biological activity assays of cell-free reassembled nuclei——Injecting cell-free reassembled nuclei into unfertilized eggs can induce the eggs to cleave and reconstitute asters,and the injected nuclei undergo cell cycle changes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张传茂; 曲健; 梁金华; 翟中和


    Nucleus may reassemble spontaneously in cell-free mixture of HeLa metaphase chromosomes,Xenopus egg extracts and ATP-regenerating system,and the nucleus shows some biological activities.It isfound that,after being injected into unfertilized mature eggs,the cell-free reassembled nuclei can cause theeggs to cleave and reconstitute asters in their cytoplasm,and the injected nuclei undergo changes in response tocell cycle regulators stored in the eggs,and that reinjecting cytostatic factors(CSF)into the eggs can stabilizethe eggs in mitotic phase,cause the nuclei disassembly and chromatin condensation to chromosomes.

  5. Imaging free radicals in organelles, cells, tissue, and in vivo with immuno-spin trapping. (United States)

    Mason, Ronald Paul


    The accurate and sensitive detection of biological free radicals in a reliable manner is required to define the mechanistic roles of such species in biochemistry, medicine and toxicology. Most of the techniques currently available are either not appropriate to detect free radicals in cells and tissues due to sensitivity limitations (electron spin resonance, ESR) or subject to artifacts that make the validity of the results questionable (fluorescent probe-based analysis). The development of the immuno-spin trapping technique overcomes all these difficulties. This technique is based on the reaction of amino acid- and DNA base-derived radicals with the spin trap 5, 5-dimethyl-1-pyrroline N-oxide (DMPO) to form protein- and DNA-DMPO nitroxide radical adducts, respectively. These adducts have limited stability and decay to produce the very stable macromolecule-DMPO-nitrone product. This stable product can be detected by mass spectrometry, NMR or immunochemistry by the use of anti-DMPO nitrone antibodies. The formation of macromolecule-DMPO-nitrone adducts is based on the selective reaction of free radical addition to the spin trap and is thus not subject to artifacts frequently encountered with other methods for free radical detection. The selectivity of spin trapping for free radicals in biological systems has been proven by ESR. Immuno-spin trapping is proving to be a potent, sensitive (a million times higher sensitivity than ESR), and easy (not quantum mechanical) method to detect low levels of macromolecule-derived radicals produced in vitro and in vivo. Anti-DMPO antibodies have been used to determine the distribution of free radicals in cells and tissues and even in living animals. In summary, the invention of the immuno-spin trapping technique has had a major impact on the ability to accurately and sensitively detect biological free radicals and, subsequently, on our understanding of the role of free radicals in biochemistry, medicine and toxicology.

  6. β Style Free-Piston Stirling Engine Control System Research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xu Jian


    Full Text Available For the Free-Piston Stirling Engines (FPSE control system, a three -phase bridge circuit is reused as the system output about rectifier and start inverter. When FPSE system is in the power stage, the double closed loop control strategy and optimization algorithm of PI control parameters is adopted to ensure the highest system transmission efficiency under the requirements of the system output power and guarantee the stability of the running system. The simulation results prove the effectiveness of the above research content.

  7. Label-free haemogram using wavelength modulated Raman spectroscopy for identifying immune-cell subset (United States)

    Ashok, Praveen C.; Praveen, Bavishna B.; Campbell, Elaine C.; Dholakia, Kishan; Powis, Simon J.


    Leucocytes in the blood of mammals form a powerful protective system against a wide range of dangerous pathogens. There are several types of immune cells that has specific role in the whole immune system. The number and type of immune cells alter in the disease state and identifying the type of immune cell provides information about a person's state of health. There are several immune cell subsets that are essentially morphologically identical and require external labeling to enable discrimination. Here we demonstrate the feasibility of using Wavelength Modulated Raman Spectroscopy (WMRS) with suitable machine learning algorithms as a label-free method to distinguish between different closely lying immune cell subset. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) was performed on WMRS data from single cells, obtained using confocal Raman microscopy for feature reduction, followed by Support Vector Machine (SVM) for binary discrimination of various cell subset, which yielded an accuracy >85%. The method was successful in discriminating between untouched and unfixed purified populations of CD4+CD3+ and CD8+CD3+ T lymphocyte subsets, and CD56+CD3- natural killer cells with a high degree of specificity. It was also proved sensitive enough to identify unique Raman signatures that allow clear discrimination between dendritic cell subsets, comprising CD303+CD45+ plasmacytoid and CD1c+CD141+ myeloid dendritic cells. The results of this study clearly show that WMRS is highly sensitive and can distinguish between cell types that are morphologically identical.

  8. Efficient cell-free production of olfactory receptors: detergent optimization, structure, and ligand binding analyses. (United States)

    Kaiser, Liselotte; Graveland-Bikker, Johanna; Steuerwald, Dirk; Vanberghem, Mélanie; Herlihy, Kara; Zhang, Shuguang


    High-level production of membrane proteins, particularly of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) in heterologous cell systems encounters a number of difficulties from their inherent hydrophobicity in their transmembrane domains, which frequently cause protein aggregation and cytotoxicity and thus reduce the protein yield. Recent advances in cell-free protein synthesis circumvent those problems to produce membrane proteins with a yield sometimes exceeding the cell-based approach. Here, we report cell-free production of a human olfactory receptor 17-4 (hOR17-4) using the wheat germ extract. Using the simple method, we also successful produced two additional olfactory receptors. To obtain soluble olfactory receptors and to increase yield, we directly added different detergents in varying concentrations to the cell-free reaction. To identify a purification buffer system that maintained the receptor in a nonaggregated form, we developed a method that uses small-volume size-exclusion column chromatography combined with rapid and sensitive dot-blot detection. Different buffer components including salt concentration, various detergents and detergent concentration, and reducing agent and its concentrations were evaluated for their ability to maintain the cell-free produced protein stable and nonaggregated. The purified olfactory receptor displays a typical a alpha-helical CD spectrum. Surface plasmon resonance measurements were used to show binding of a known ligand undecanal to hOR17-4. Our approach to produce a high yield of purified olfactory receptor is a milestone toward obtaining a large quantity of olfactory receptors for designing bionic sensors. Furthermore, this simple approach may be broadly useful not only for other classes of GPCRs but also for other membrane proteins.

  9. Isolation of cell-free bacterial inclusion bodies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodríguez-Carmona Escarlata


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Bacterial inclusion bodies are submicron protein clusters usually found in recombinant bacteria that have been traditionally considered as undesirable products from protein production processes. However, being fully biocompatible, they have been recently characterized as nanoparticulate inert materials useful as scaffolds for tissue engineering, with potentially wider applicability in biomedicine and material sciences. Current protocols for inclusion body isolation from Escherichia coli usually offer between 95 to 99% of protein recovery, what in practical terms, might imply extensive bacterial cell contamination, not compatible with the use of inclusion bodies in biological interfaces. Results Using an appropriate combination of chemical and mechanical cell disruption methods we have established a convenient procedure for the recovery of bacterial inclusion bodies with undetectable levels of viable cell contamination, below 10-1 cfu/ml, keeping the particulate organization of these aggregates regarding size and protein folding features. Conclusions The application of the developed protocol allows obtaining bacterial free inclusion bodies suitable for use in mammalian cell cultures and other biological interfaces.

  10. Adaptation of CHO cells in serum-free conditions for erythropoietin production: Application of EVOP technique for process optimization. (United States)

    Jukić, Suzana; Bubenik, Dijana; Pavlović, Nediljko; Tušek, Ana Jurinjak; Srček, Višnja Gaurina


    Mammalian cell cultures are the preferred expression systems for the production of biopharmaceuticals requiring posttranslational processing. Usually, cell cultures are cultivated in medium supplemented with serum, which supports cell proliferation, viability, and productivity. However, due to scientific and regulatory concerns, serum-free conditions are required in recombinant protein production. Cell lines that are intended for commercial recombinant protein production have to adapt to serum- or protein-free conditions early in their development. This is a labor- and time-consuming process because of the specific cell requirements related to their adaptation in new microenvironment. In the present study, a Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cell line producing glycosylated recombinant human erythropoietin (rhEPO) was adapted for growth and rhEPO production in serum- and protein-free conditions. The physiology, growth parameters, and morphology of the CHO cells and rhEPO biosynthesis and structure were closely monitored during the adaptation process to avoid unwanted selection of cell subpopulations. The results showed that the CHO cells were successfully adapted to suspension growth and rhEPO production in the protein-free conditions and that the structure of rhEPO remained nearly unchanged. In addition, during rhEPO production in the protein-free suspension conditions, the agitation rate seem to be significant for optimal process performance in contrast to the initial cell concentration, evaluated through evolutionary operation method.

  11. Conformational Antibody Binding to a Native, Cell-Free Expressed GPCR in Block Copolymer Membranes


    de Hoog, Hans-Peter M.; Esther M Lin JieRong; Sourabh Banerjee; Décaillot, Fabien M.; Madhavan Nallani


    G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) play a key role in physiological processes and are attractive drug targets. Their biophysical characterization is, however, highly challenging because of their innate instability outside a stabilizing membrane and the difficulty of finding a suitable expression system. We here show the cell-free expression of a GPCR, CXCR4, and its direct embedding in diblock copolymer membranes. The polymer-stabilized CXCR4 is readily immobilized onto biosensor chips for l...

  12. Cell-free synthesis of the H-cluster: a model for the in vitro assembly of metalloprotein metal centers. (United States)

    Kuchenreuther, Jon M; Shiigi, Stacey A; Swartz, James R


    Many organometallic cofactors are highly complex and require multiple accessory proteins for both their assembly and transfer to a target protein. A cell-free system in which the biosynthetic pathway for a prosthetic group has been fully or even partially reconstructed enables investigations of the reaction sequence as well as the cofactor itself. As a model for the in vitro assembly of protein-bound metal centers, we describe a procedure for the cell-free synthesis of the H-cluster in the context of producing purified and active [FeFe] hydrogenase samples for spectroscopic studies. In general terms, this in vitro system is a combination of non-purified accessory proteins, exogenous substrates, and purified hydrogenase apoprotein. We also describe methods for making the required components used in the cell-free system. Specifically, these procedures include anaerobic expression of heterologous metalloproteins in Escherichia coli, anaerobic cell lysate production, and anaerobic metalloprotein purification using Strep-Tactin(®) chromatography.

  13. Glasses-free 3D viewing systems for medical imaging (United States)

    Magalhães, Daniel S. F.; Serra, Rolando L.; Vannucci, André L.; Moreno, Alfredo B.; Li, Li M.


    In this work we show two different glasses-free 3D viewing systems for medical imaging: a stereoscopic system that employs a vertically dispersive holographic screen (VDHS) and a multi-autostereoscopic system, both used to produce 3D MRI/CT images. We describe how to obtain a VDHS in holographic plates optimized for this application, with field of view of 7 cm to each eye and focal length of 25 cm, showing images done with the system. We also describe a multi-autostereoscopic system, presenting how it can generate 3D medical imaging from viewpoints of a MRI or CT image, showing results of a 3D angioresonance image.

  14. More Than Tiny Sacks: Stem Cell Exosomes as Cell-Free Modality for Cardiac Repair. (United States)

    Kishore, Raj; Khan, Mohsin


    Stem cell therapy provides immense hope for regenerating the pathological heart, yet has been marred by issues surrounding the effectiveness, unclear mechanisms, and survival of the donated cell population in the ischemic myocardial milieu. Poor survival and engraftment coupled to inadequate cardiac commitment of the adoptively transferred stem cells compromises the improvement in cardiac function. Various alternative approaches to enhance the efficacy of stem cell therapies and to overcome issues with cell therapy have been used with varied success. Cell-free components, such as exosomes enriched in proteins, messenger RNAs, and miRs characteristic of parental stem cells, represent a potential approach for treating cardiovascular diseases. Recently, exosomes from different kinds of stem cells have been effectively used to promote cardiac function in the pathological heart. The aim of this review is to summarize current research efforts on stem cell exosomes, including their potential benefits and limitations to develop a potentially viable therapy for cardiovascular problems.

  15. Preparative scale production of functional mouse aquaporin 4 using different cell-free expression modes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lei Kai

    Full Text Available The continuous progress in the structural and functional characterization of aquaporins increasingly attracts attention to study their roles in certain mammalian diseases. Although several structures of aquaporins have already been solved by crystallization, the challenge of producing sufficient amounts of functional proteins still remains. CF (cell free expression has emerged in recent times as a promising alternative option in order to synthesize large quantities of membrane proteins, and the focus of this report was to evaluate the potential of this technique for the production of eukaryotic aquaporins. We have selected the mouse aquaporin 4 as a representative of mammalian aquaporins. The protein was synthesized in an E. coli extract based cell-free system with two different expression modes, and the efficiencies of two modes were compared. In both, the P-CF (cell-free membrane protein expression as precipitate mode generating initial aquaporin precipitates as well as in the D-CF (cell-free membrane protein expression in presence of detergent mode, generating directly detergent solubilized samples, we were able to obtain mg amounts of protein per ml of cell-free reaction. Purified aquaporin samples solubilized in different detergents were reconstituted into liposomes, and analyzed for the water channel activity. The calculated P(f value of proteoliposome samples isolated from the D-CF mode was 133 µm/s at 10°C, which was 5 times higher as that of the control. A reversible inhibitory effect of mercury chloride was observed, which is consistent with previous observations of in vitro reconstituted aquaporin 4. In this study, a fast and convenient protocol was established for functional expression of aquaporins, which could serve as basis for further applications such as water filtration.

  16. Ex vivo expansion of human T cells for adoptive immunotherapy using the novel Xeno-free CTS Immune Cell Serum Replacement. (United States)

    Smith, Corey; Økern, Grethe; Rehan, Sweera; Beagley, Leone; Lee, Sau K; Aarvak, Tanja; Schjetne, Karoline W; Khanna, Rajiv


    The manufacture of clinical grade cellular products for adoptive immunotherapy requires ex vivo culture and expansion of human T cells. One of the key components in manufacturing of T cell therapies is human serum (HS) or fetal bovine serum (FBS), which can potentially expose immunotherapy recipient to adventitious infectious pathogens and are thus considered as non-cGMP compliant for adoptive therapy. Here we describe a novel xeno-free serum replacement (SR) with defined components that can be reproducibly used for the production of clinical grade T-cell therapies in combination with several different cell culture media. Dynabeads CD3/CD28 Cell Therapy System (CTS)-activated or antigen-specific T cells expanded using the xeno-free SR, CTS Immune Cell SR, showed comparable growth kinetics observed with cell culture media supplemented with HS or FBS. Importantly the xeno-free SR supplemented medium supported the optimal expansion of T cells specific for subdominant tumour-associated antigens and promoted expansion of T cells with central memory T-cell phenotype, which is favourable for in vivo survival and persistence following adoptive transfer. Furthermore, T cells expanded using xeno-free SR medium were highly amenable to lentivirus-mediated gene transduction for potential application for gene-modified T cells. Taken together, the CTS Immune Cell SR provides a novel platform strategy for the manufacture of clinical grade adoptive cellular therapies.

  17. Continuous-flow free acid monitoring method and system (United States)

    Strain, J.E.; Ross, H.H.


    A free acid monitoring method and apparatus is provided for continuously measuring the excess acid present in a process stream. The disclosed monitoring system and method is based on the relationship of the partial pressure ratio of water and acid in equilibrium with an acid solution at constant temperature. A portion of the process stream is pumped into and flows through the monitor under the influence of gravity and back to the process stream. A continuous flowing sample is vaporized at a constant temperature and the vapor is subsequently condensed. Conductivity measurements of the condensate produces a nonlinear response function from which the free acid molarity of the sample process stream is determined.

  18. a Man-Portable Imu-Free Mobile Mapping System (United States)

    Nüchter, A.; Borrmann, D.; Koch, P.; Kühn, M.; May, S.


    Mobile mapping systems are commonly mounted on cars, ships and robots. The data is directly geo-referenced using GPS data and expensive IMU (inertial measurement systems). Driven by the need for flexible, indoor mapping systems we present an inexpensive mobile mapping solution that can be mounted on a backpack. It combines a horizontally mounted 2D profiler with a constantly spinning 3D laser scanner. The initial system featuring a low-cost MEMS IMU was revealed and demonstrated at MoLaS: Technology Workshop Mobile Laser Scanning at Fraunhofer IPM in Freiburg in November 2014. In this paper, we present an IMU-free solution.

  19. Uses of cell free fetal DNA in maternal circulation. (United States)

    Hill, Melissa; Barrett, Angela N; White, Helen; Chitty, Lyn S


    For over a decade, researchers have focused their attention on the development of non-invasive prenatal diagnosis tests based on cell-free fetal DNA circulating in maternal blood. With the possibility of earlier and safer testing, non-invasive prenatal diagnosis has the potential to bring many positive benefits to prenatal diagnosis. Non-invasive prenatal diagnosis for fetal sex determination for women who are carriers of sex-linked conditions is now firmly established in clinical practice. Other non-invasive prenatal diagnosis-based tests are set to follow, as future applications, such as the detection of single-gene disorders and chromosomal abnormalities, are now well within reach. Here, we review recent developments in non-invasive prenatal diagnosis for genetic conditions and chromosomal abnormalities, and provide an overview of research into ethical concerns, social issues and stakeholder view points.

  20. Current collecting grids for ITO-free solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Galagan, Yulia; Gorter, Harrie; Sabik, Sami; Andriessen, Ronn [Holst Centre, High Tech Campus 31, Eindhoven (Netherlands); Zimmermann, Birger [Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE, Freiburg (Germany); Coenen, Erica W.C. [TNO Technical Sciences, Eindhoven (Netherlands); Joergensen, Mikkel; Krebs, Frederik C. [Risoe National Laboratory for Sustainable Energy, Technical University of Denmark, Roskilde (Denmark); Tanenbaum, David M. [Risoe National Laboratory for Sustainable Energy, Technical University of Denmark, Roskilde (Denmark); Department of Physics and Astronomy, Pomona College, Claremont, CA (United States); Slooff, Lenneke H.; Veenstra, Sjoerd C.; Kroon, Jan M. [Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN), Petten (Netherlands)


    Indium-tin-oxide (ITO) free polymer solar cells prepared by ink jet printing a composite front electrode comprising silver grid lines and a semitransparent PEDOT:PSS conductor are demonstrated. The effect of grid line density is explored for a large series of devices and a careful modeling study enabling the identification of the most rational grid structure is presented. Both optical and light beam induced current (LBIC) mapping of the devices are used to support the power loss model and to follow the evolution of the performance over time. Current generation is found to be evenly distributed over the active area initially progressing to a larger graduation in areas with different performance. Over time coating defects also become much more apparent in the LBIC images. (Copyright copyright 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH and Co. KGaA, Weinheim)

  1. Forced versus free traffic in an automated milking system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Munksgaard, Lene; Rushen, J.; de Passillé, A.M.;


    Cows in automated milking systems with free access to feeders sometimes show a reduced use of the robotic milkers, while forced traffic where cows have to pass through the robot to reach the feeders may reduce feeding time and frequency. We examined two groups of 35 lactating cows. For 21 d, one....... The average number of visits to the robot, either with or without milking, did not differ between the two types of traffic. On average cows lay down for 12.3 h/d, with no significant difference between free and forced traffic. The type of traffic did not affect the duration of time spent in the feeding area....... With both forced and free traffic, there was marked diurnal variation in feeding, with relatively little feeding occurring between 2200 h and 0800 h. Use of forced traffic did not reduce feeding time. It did not improve access to the robot milker or eliminate diurnal variation. Differences between cows...

  2. Prospective guidance in a free-swimming cell

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Delafield-Butt, Jonathan T.; Pepping, Gert-Jan; McCaig, Colin D.; Lee, David N.


    A systems theory of movement control in animals is presented in this article and applied to explaining the controlled behaviour of the single-celled Paramecium caudatum in an electric field. The theory-General Tau Theory-is founded on three basic principles: (i) all purposive movement entails prospe

  3. Differentiation of Dental Pulp Stem Cells into Neuron-Like Cells in Serum-Free Medium

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shahrul Hisham Zainal Ariffin


    Full Text Available Dental pulp tissue contains dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs. Dental pulp cells (also known as dental pulp-derived mesenchymal stem cells are capable of differentiating into multilineage cells including neuron-like cells. The aim of this study was to examine the capability of DPSCs to differentiate into neuron-like cells without using any reagents or growth factors. DPSCs were isolated from teeth extracted from 6- to 8-week-old mice and maintained in complete medium. The cells from the fourth passage were induced to differentiate by culturing in medium without serum or growth factors. RT-PCR molecular analysis showed characteristics of Cd146+, Cd166+, and Cd31− in DPSCs, indicating that these cells are mesenchymal stem cells rather than hematopoietic stem cells. After 5 days of neuronal differentiation, the cells showed neuron-like morphological changes and expressed MAP2 protein. The activation of Nestin was observed at low level prior to differentiation and increased after 5 days of culture in differentiation medium, whereas Tub3 was activated only after 5 days of neuronal differentiation. The proliferation of the differentiated cells decreased in comparison to that of the control cells. Dental pulp stem cells are induced to differentiate into neuron-like cells when cultured in serum- and growth factor-free medium.

  4. A free-blockage controlled release system based on the hydrophobic/hydrophilic conversion of mesoporous silica nanopores. (United States)

    Wang, Wenqian; Chen, Linfeng; Xu, Li-Ping; Du, Hongwu; Wen, Yongqiang; Song, Yanlin; Zhang, Xueji


    A pH-responsive free-blockage release system was achieved through controlling the hydrophobic/hydrophilic conversion of mesoporous silica nanopores. This system further presented pulsatile release with changing pH values between 4.0 and 7.0 for several cycles. This free-blockage release system could also release antitumor agents to induce cell death after infecting tumor cells and could have the ability of continuous infection to tumor cells with high drug-delivery efficiency and few side effects.

  5. Scale-Free Networks Hidden in Chaotic Dynamical Systems

    CERN Document Server

    Iba, Takashi


    In this paper, we show our discovery that state-transition networks in several chaotic dynamical systems are "scale-free networks," with a technique to understand a dynamical system as a whole, which we call the analysis for "Discretized-State Transition" (DST) networks; This scale-free nature is found universally in the logistic map, the sine map, the cubic map, the general symmetric map, the sine-circle map, the Gaussian map, and the delayed logistic map. Our findings prove that there is a hidden order in chaos, which has not detected yet. Furthermore, we anticipate that our study opens up a new way to a "network analysis approach to dynamical systems" for understanding complex phenomena.

  6. A Simple and Rapid Method for Preparing a Cell-Free Bacterial Lysate for Protein Synthesis (United States)

    Kaduri, Maya; Shainsky-Roitman, Janna; Goldfeder, Mor; Ivanir, Eran; Benhar, Itai; Shoham, Yuval; Schroeder, Avi


    Cell-free protein synthesis (CFPS) systems are important laboratory tools that are used for various synthetic biology applications. Here, we present a simple and inexpensive laboratory-scale method for preparing a CFPS system from E. coli. The procedure uses basic lab equipment, a minimal set of reagents, and requires less than one hour to process the bacterial cell mass into a functional S30-T7 extract. BL21(DE3) and MRE600 E. coli strains were used to prepare the S30-T7 extract. The CFPS system was used to produce a set of fluorescent and therapeutic proteins of different molecular weights (up to 66 kDa). This system was able to produce 40–150 μg-protein/ml, with variations depending on the plasmid type, expressed protein and E. coli strain. Interestingly, the BL21-based CFPS exhibited stability and increased activity at 40 and 45°C. To the best of our knowledge, this is the most rapid and affordable lab-scale protocol for preparing a cell-free protein synthesis system, with high thermal stability and efficacy in producing therapeutic proteins. PMID:27768741

  7. A cell-free expression and purification process for rapid production of protein biologics. (United States)

    Sullivan, Challise J; Pendleton, Erik D; Sasmor, Henri H; Hicks, William L; Farnum, John B; Muto, Machiko; Amendt, Eric M; Schoborg, Jennifer A; Martin, Rey W; Clark, Lauren G; Anderson, Mark J; Choudhury, Alaksh; Fior, Raffaella; Lo, Yu-Hwa; Griffey, Richard H; Chappell, Stephen A; Jewett, Michael C; Mauro, Vincent P; Dresios, John


    Cell-free protein synthesis has emerged as a powerful technology for rapid and efficient protein production. Cell-free methods are also amenable to automation and such systems have been extensively used for high-throughput protein production and screening; however, current fluidic systems are not adequate for manufacturing protein biopharmaceuticals. In this work, we report on the initial development of a fluidic process for rapid end-to-end production of recombinant protein biologics. This process incorporates a bioreactor module that can be used with eukaryotic or prokaryotic lysates that are programmed for combined transcription/translation of an engineered DNA template encoding for specific protein targets. Purification of the cell-free expressed product occurs through a series of protein separation modules that are configurable for process-specific isolation of different proteins. Using this approach, we demonstrate production of two bioactive human protein therapeutics, erythropoietin and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor, in yeast and bacterial extracts, respectively, each within 24 hours. This process is flexible, scalable and amenable to automation for rapid production at the point-of-need of proteins with significant pharmaceutical, medical, or biotechnological value.

  8. Synthesis and cell-free cloning of DNA libraries using programmable microfluidics. (United States)

    Ben Yehezkel, Tuval; Rival, Arnaud; Raz, Ofir; Cohen, Rafael; Marx, Zipora; Camara, Miguel; Dubern, Jean-Frédéric; Koch, Birgit; Heeb, Stephan; Krasnogor, Natalio; Delattre, Cyril; Shapiro, Ehud


    Microfluidics may revolutionize our ability to write synthetic DNA by addressing several fundamental limitations associated with generating novel genetic constructs. Here we report the first de novo synthesis and cell-free cloning of custom DNA libraries in sub-microliter reaction droplets using programmable digital microfluidics. Specifically, we developed Programmable Order Polymerization (POP), Microfluidic Combinatorial Assembly of DNA (M-CAD) and Microfluidic In-vitro Cloning (MIC) and applied them to de novo synthesis, combinatorial assembly and cell-free cloning of genes, respectively. Proof-of-concept for these methods was demonstrated by programming an autonomous microfluidic system to construct and clone libraries of yeast ribosome binding sites and bacterial Azurine, which were then retrieved in individual droplets and validated. The ability to rapidly and robustly generate designer DNA molecules in an autonomous manner should have wide application in biological research and development.

  9. Cell-free biology: exploiting the interface between synthetic biology and synthetic chemistry. (United States)

    Harris, D Calvin; Jewett, Michael C


    Just as synthetic organic chemistry once revolutionized the ability of chemists to build molecules (including those that did not exist in nature) following a basic set of design rules, cell-free synthetic biology is beginning to provide an improved toolbox and faster process for not only harnessing but also expanding the chemistry of life. At the interface between chemistry and biology, research in cell-free synthetic systems is proceeding in two different directions: using synthetic biology for synthetic chemistry and using synthetic chemistry to reprogram or mimic biology. In the coming years, the impact of advances inspired by these approaches will make possible the synthesis of nonbiological polymers having new backbone compositions, new chemical properties, new structures, and new functions.

  10. Elevated levels of cell-free circulating DNA in patients with acute dengue virus infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tran Thi Ngoc Ha

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Apoptosis is thought to play a role in the pathogenesis of severe dengue and the release of cell-free DNA into the circulatory system in several medical conditions. Therefore, we investigated circulating DNA as a potential biomarker for severe dengue. METHODS AND FINDINGS: A direct fluorometric degradation assay using PicoGreen was performed to quantify cell-free DNA from patient plasma. Circulating DNA levels were significantly higher in patients with dengue virus infection than with other febrile illnesses and healthy controls. Remarkably, the increase of DNA levels correlated with the severity of dengue. Additionally, multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that circulating DNA levels independently correlated with dengue shock syndrome. CONCLUSIONS: Circulating DNA levels were increased in dengue patients and correlated with dengue severity. Additional studies are required to show the benefits of this biomarker in early dengue diagnosis and for the prognosis of shock complication.

  11. Red blood cell engineering in stroma and serum/plasma-free conditions and long term storage. (United States)

    Kim, Hyun Ok; Baek, Eun Jung


    In vitro generation of artificial red blood cells (RBCs) is very important to overcome insufficient and unsafe blood supply. Despite recent progresses in RBCs engineering from several stem cell sources, none of them could succeed in generation of functional RBCs in the absence of serum/plasma and feeder cells. Without the elimination of serum and plasma, human RBC engineering in a large scale is impossible, especially for the future bioreactor system. Using an appropriate combination of cost-effective and safe reagents, the present study demonstrated the terminal maturation of hematopoietic stem cells into enucleated RBCs, which were functional comparable to donated human RBCs. Surprisingly, the viability of erythroid cells was higher in our serum- and feeder-free culture condition than in the previous serum-added condition. This was possible by supplementation with vitamin C in media and hypothermic conditions. Also, our report firstly presents the storability of artificial RBCs, which possibility is essential for clinical application. In summary, our report demonstrates engineering of human applicable RBCs with a dramatically enhanced viability and shelf-life in both serum- and stroma-free conditions. This innovative culture technology could contribute to the realization of the large-scale pharming of human RBCs using bioreactor systems.

  12. A chimeric vitronectin: IGF-I protein supports feeder-cell-free and serum-free culture of human embryonic stem cells. (United States)

    Manton, Kerry J; Richards, Sean; Van Lonkhuyzen, Derek; Cormack, Luke; Leavesley, David; Upton, Zee


    The therapeutic use of human embryonic stem (hES) cells is severely limited by safety concerns regarding their culture in media containing animal-derived or nondefined factors and on animal-derived feeder cells. Thus, there is a pressing need to develop culture techniques that are xeno-free, fully defined, and synthetic. Our laboratory has discovered that insulin-like growth factor (IGF) and vitronectin (VN) bind to each other resulting in synergistic short-term functional effects in several cell types, including keratinocytes and breast epithelial cells. We have further refined this complex into a single chimeric VN:IGF-I protein that functionally mimics the effects obtained upon binding of IGF-I to VN. The aim of the current study was to determine whether hES cells can be serially propagated in feeder-cell-free and serum-free conditions using medium containing our novel chimeric VN:IGF-I protein. Here we demonstrate that hES cells can be serially propagated and retain their undifferentiated state in vitro for up to 35 passages in our feeder-cell-free, serum-free, chemically defined media. We have utilized real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR), immunofluorescence, and fluorescence-activated cell sorter (FACS) analysis to show that the hES cells have maintained an undifferentiated phenotype. In vitro differentiation assays demonstrated that the hES cells retain their pluripotent potential and the karyotype of the hES cells remains unchanged. This study demonstrates that the novel, fully defined, synthetic VN:IGF-I chimera-containing medium described herein is a viable alternative to media containing serum, and that in conjunction with laminin-coated plates facilitates feeder-cell-free and serum-free growth of hES.

  13. Metal-Free Sensitizers for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells. (United States)

    Chaurasia, Sumit; Lin, Jiann T


    This review focuses on our work on metal-free sensitizers for dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). Sensitizers based on D-A'-π-A architecture (D is a donor, A is an acceptor, A' is an electron-deficient entity) exhibit better light harvesting than D-π-A-type sensitizers. However, appropriate molecular design is needed to avoid excessive aggregation of negative charge at the electron-deficient entity upon photoexcitation. Rigidified aromatics, including aromatic segments comprising fused electron-excessive and -deficient units in the spacer, allow effective electronic communication, and good photoinduced charge transfer leads to excellent cell performance. Sensitizers with two anchors/acceptors, D(-π-A)2 , can more efficiently harvest light, inject electrons, and suppress dark current compared with congeners with a single anchor. Appropriate incorporation of heteroaromatic units in the spacer is beneficial to DSSC performance. High-performance, aqueous-based DSSCs can be achieved with a dual redox couple comprising imidazolium iodide and 2,2,6,6-tetramethylpiperidin-N-oxyl, and/or using dyes of improved wettability through the incorporation of a triethylene oxide methyl ether chain.

  14. A precious-metal free micro fuel cell accumulator (United States)

    Bretthauer, C.; Müller, C.; Reinecke, H.


    In recent years, integrated fuel cell (FC) type primary and secondary batteries attracted a great deal of attention as integrated on-chip power sources due to their high theoretical power densities. Unfortunately, the costs of these devices have been rather high. This is partially due to the involved clean-room processes, but also due to the fact that these devices generally rely on expensive precious-metals such as Pd and Pt. Therefore we developed a novel integrated FC type accumulator that is based on non-precious-metals only. The key component of the presented accumulator is its alkaline polymer electrolyte membrane that allows not only the usage of a low-cost AB5 type hydrogen storage electrode, but also the usage of La0.6Ca0.4CoO3 as a precious-metal free bifunctional catalyst for the air-breathing electrode. Additionally the presented design requires only comparatively few cleanroom processes which further reduces the overall production costs. Although abdicating precious-metals, the presented accumulator shows an open circuit voltage of 0.81 V and a maximum power density of 0.66 mW cm-2 which is comparable or even superior to former precious-metal based cells.

  15. Cell-free measurements of brightness of fluorescently labeled antibodies (United States)

    Zhou, Haiying; Tourkakis, George; Shi, Dennis; Kim, David M.; Zhang, Hairong; Du, Tommy; Eades, William C.; Berezin, Mikhail Y.


    Validation of imaging contrast agents, such as fluorescently labeled imaging antibodies, has been recognized as a critical challenge in clinical and preclinical studies. As the number of applications for imaging antibodies grows, these materials are increasingly being subjected to careful scrutiny. Antibody fluorescent brightness is one of the key parameters that is of critical importance. Direct measurements of the brightness with common spectroscopy methods are challenging, because the fluorescent properties of the imaging antibodies are highly sensitive to the methods of conjugation, degree of labeling, and contamination with free dyes. Traditional methods rely on cell-based assays that lack reproducibility and accuracy. In this manuscript, we present a novel and general approach for measuring the brightness using antibody-avid polystyrene beads and flow cytometry. As compared to a cell-based method, the described technique is rapid, quantitative, and highly reproducible. The proposed method requires less than ten microgram of sample and is applicable for optimizing synthetic conjugation procedures, testing commercial imaging antibodies, and performing high-throughput validation of conjugation procedures.

  16. Free boundary problems in PDEs and particle systems

    CERN Document Server

    Carinci, Gioia; Giardinà, Cristian; Presutti, Errico


    In this volume a theory for models of transport in the presence of a free boundary is developed. Macroscopic laws of transport are described by PDE's. When the system is open, there are several mechanisms to couple the system with the external forces. Here a class of systems where the interaction with the exterior takes place in correspondence of a free boundary is considered. Both continuous and discrete models sharing the same structure are analysed. In Part I a free boundary problem related to the Stefan Problem is worked out in all details. For this model a new notion of relaxed solution is proposed for which global existence and uniqueness is proven. It is also shown that this is the hydrodynamic limit of the empirical mass density of the associated particle system. In Part II several other models are discussed. The expectation is that the results proved for the basic model extend to these other cases. All the models discussed in this volume have an interest in problems arising in several research fields...

  17. Fuel cell system with interconnect

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Zhien; Goettler, Richard


    The present invention includes an integrated planar, series connected fuel cell system having electrochemical cells electrically connected via interconnects, wherein the anodes of the electrochemical cells are protected against Ni loss and migration via an engineered porous anode barrier layer.

  18. [Patient with homozygous sickle cell disease and free flap surgery: Ensuring the success of the procedure]. (United States)

    Deneuve, S; Maire, L; Bachelot, V; Dammacco, M-A; Zrounba, P; Delay, E


    Sickle cell anaemia is rare in France but frequent in Africa, leading to rigid, sickle-like shape red blood cells which bind together blocking microcirculation under certain circumstances. The vaso-occlusive crisis is the most frequent clinical manifestation especially in case of homozygous disease. Sickle cells disease is therefore usually considerated as a contraindication to microsurgery, however sometimes, a free flap procedure is mandatory. We here report the case of a 47-year-old man suffering with homozygous sickle cell anaemia and needing an antebrachial free flap procedure for a tongue reconstruction. The postoperative course was unremarkable apart from a delayed healing which is common in this particular localization. A review of the litterature allows to list the precautions to be taken to ensure a microsurgical procedure with this medical background. The preoperative examination has to assess usual sickle cell disease comorbidities such as kidney failure, heart failure or pulmonary hypertension. All the events leading to either low output syndrome, hypoxia, hypothermia, or a stress caused by uncontrolled pain should be avoided per- and postoperatively. With an optimum medical care, microsurgery is possible even in patients suffering with sickle cells anaemia. This case is rare in France but will become frequent in Africa with the improvement of the healthcare system, allowing to give all patients the best medical care.

  19. Determination of the potency of a novel saw palmetto supercritical CO2 extract (SPSE for 5α-reductase isoform II inhibition using a cell-free in vitro test system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pais P


    Full Text Available Pilar Pais, Agustí Villar, Santiago Rull Euromed, Barcelona, Spain Background: The nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate-dependent membrane protein 5α-reductase catalyses the conversion of testosterone to the most potent androgen – 5α-dihydrotestosterone. Two 5α-reductase isoenzymes are expressed in humans: type I and type II. The latter is found primarily in prostate tissue. Saw palmetto extract (SPE has been used extensively in the treatment of lower urinary tract symptoms secondary to benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH. The pharmacological effects of SPE include the inhibition of 5α-reductase, as well as anti-inflammatory and antiproliferative effects. Clinical studies of SPE have been inconclusive – some have shown significant results, and others have not – possibly the result of varying bioactivities of the SPEs used in the studies. Purpose: To determine the in vitro potency in a cell-free test system of a novel SP supercritical CO2 extract (SPSE, an inhibitor of the 5α-reductase isoenzyme type II. Materials and methods: The inhibitory potency of SPSE was compared to that of finasteride, an approved 5α-reductase inhibitor, on the basis of the enzymatic conversion of the substrate androstenedione to the 5α-reduced product 5α-androstanedione. Results: By concentration-dependent inhibition of 5α-reductase type II in vitro (half-maximal inhibitory concentration 3.58±0.05 µg/mL, SPSE demonstrated competitive binding toward the active site of the enzyme. Finasteride, the approved 5α-reductase inhibitor tested as positive control, led to 63%–75% inhibition of 5α-reductase type II. Conclusion: SPSE effectively inhibits the enzyme that has been linked to BPH, and the amount of extract required for activity is comparatively low. It can be confirmed from the results of this study that SPSE has bioactivity that promotes prostate health at a level that is superior to that of many other phytotherapeutic extracts. The

  20. Elevated Concentrations of Serum Immunoglobulin Free Light Chains in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Patients in Relation to Disease Activity, Inflammatory Status, B Cell Activity and Epstein-Barr Virus Antibodies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anette H Draborg

    Full Text Available In this study, we examined the concentration of serum immunoglobulin free light chains (FLCs in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE patients and investigated its association with various disease parameters in order to evaluate the role of FLCs as a potential biomarker in SLE. Furthermore, FLCs' association with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV antibodies was examined.Using a nephelometric assay, κFLC and λFLC concentrations were quantified in sera from 45 SLE patients and 40 healthy controls. SLE patients with renal insufficiency were excluded in order to preclude high concentrations of serum FLCs due to decreased clearance.Serum FLC concentrations were significantly elevated in SLE patients compared to healthy controls (p<0.0001 also after adjusting for Ig levels (p<0.0001. The concentration of serum FLCs correlated with a global disease activity (SLE disease activity index (SLEDAI score of the SLE patients (r = 0.399, p = 0.007. Furthermore, concentrations of FLCs correlated with titers of dsDNA antibodies (r = 0.383, p = 0.009, and FLC levels and SLEDAI scores correlated in the anti-dsDNA-positive SLE patients, but not in anti-dsDNA-negative SLE patients. Total immunoglobulin (IgG and IgA concentrations correlated with FLC concentrations and elevated FLC levels were additionally shown to associate with the inflammatory marker C-reactive protein and also with complement consumption determined by low C4 in SLE patients. Collectively, results indicated that elevated serum FLCs reflects increased B cell activity in relation to inflammation. SLE patients had an increased seropositivity of EBV-directed antibodies that did not associate with elevated FLC concentrations. An explanation for this could be that serum FLC concentrations reflect the current EBV activity (reactivation whereas EBV-directed antibodies reflect the extent of previous infection/reactivations.SLE patients have elevated concentrations of serum FLCs that correlate with global disease

  1. Modeling belief systems with scale-free networks

    CERN Document Server

    Antal, Miklos


    Evolution of belief systems has always been in focus of cognitive research. In this paper we delineate a new model describing belief systems as a network of statements considered true. Testing the model a small number of parameters enabled us to reproduce a variety of well-known mechanisms ranging from opinion changes to development of psychological problems. The self-organizing opinion structure showed a scale-free degree distribution. The novelty of our work lies in applying a convenient set of definitions allowing us to depict opinion network dynamics in a highly favorable way, which resulted in a scale-free belief network. As an additional benefit, we listed several conjectural consequences in a number of areas related to thinking and reasoning.

  2. Dynamic Control of Completely Free-Flying Space Robot System

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, J.J. [Korea Advanced Energy Research Inst., Daeduk-Danji (Korea, Republic of). Korea Nuclear Safety Center; Xu, Y.; Kanade, T. [Carnegie-Mellon Univ., Pittsburgh, PA (United States). Robotics Inst.


    In this paper we discuss dynamic control of a completely- free-flying space robot system where the base attitude is not controlled. We first derive the system dynamic formulations in joint space and in inertia space, based on Lagrangian dynamics and linear and angular momentum conservation laws. The properties of completely free-flying robot system dynamics are studied. The nonlinear parameterization, one of the most important properties of the system dynamics, is demonstrated in theory and by a case study. Based on the system dynamic model in inertial space, globally stable dynamics control schemes are then proposed. Two algorithms are presented for the normal regulation problem and trajectory tracking applications. The PD algorithm is simple and easy to implement. The dynamic control algorithm has a fast and accurate system response even for the system with small mass/inertia ratio of the base with respect to the robot. The effectiveness of proposed algorithms is demonstrated by simulation studies. Future research work is identified. (author). 22 refs., 10 figs.

  3. In vitro translation of cardiovirus ribonucleic acid by mammalian cell-free extracts. (United States)

    Eggen, K L; Shatkin, A J


    Cell-free extracts prepared from Ehrlich ascites and mouse L cells synthesize viral proteins in response to encephalomyocarditis virus, mouse Elberfeld virus, and mengovirus ribonucleic acid. Although HeLa cell extracts are inactive, their ribosomes are functional in the presence of heterologous supernatant fractions. Synthesis depends upon the addition of adenosine triphosphate, guanosine triphosphate, an energy-generating system, and 4 mm Mg(2+). Initiation is completed during the first 10 to 20 min of incubation, but chain elongation continues for 1 hr or more. The products are of higher molecular weight than virion structural proteins and resemble polypeptides formed in virus-infected cells during a short pulse. Tryptic peptides of virion proteins and in vitro products are similar for all three cardioviruses.

  4. Generation and characterization of integration-free induced pluripotent stem cells from patients with autoimmune disease. (United States)

    Son, Mi-Young; Lee, Mi-Ok; Jeon, Hyejin; Seol, Binna; Kim, Jung Hwa; Chang, Jae-Suk; Cho, Yee Sook


    Autoimmune diseases (AIDs), a heterogeneous group of immune-mediated disorders, are a major and growing health problem. Although AIDs are currently treated primarily with anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive drugs, the use of stem cell transplantation in patients with AIDs is becoming increasingly common. However, stem cell transplantation therapy has limitations, including a shortage of available stem cells and immune rejection of cells from nonautologous sources. Induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology, which allows the generation of patient-specific pluripotent stem cells, could offer an alternative source for clinical applications of stem cell therapies in AID patients. We used nonintegrating oriP/EBNA-1-based episomal vectors to reprogram dermal fibroblasts from patients with AIDs such as ankylosing spondylitis (AS), Sjögren's syndrome (SS) and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). The pluripotency and multilineage differentiation capacity of each patient-specific iPSC line was validated. The safety of these iPSCs for use in stem cell transplantation is indicated by the fact that all AID-specific iPSCs are integrated transgene free. Finally, all AID-specific iPSCs derived in this study could be differentiated into cells of hematopoietic and mesenchymal lineages in vitro as shown by flow cytometric analysis and induction of terminal differentiation potential. Our results demonstrate the successful generation of integration-free iPSCs from patients with AS, SS and SLE. These findings support the possibility of using iPSC technology in autologous and allogeneic cell replacement therapy for various AIDs, including AS, SS and SLE.

  5. UWB Tracking System Design for Free-Flyers (United States)

    Ni, Jianjun; Arndt, Dickey; Phan, Chan; Ngo, Phong; Gross, Julia; Dusl, John


    This paper discusses an ultra-wideband (UWB) tracking system design effort for Mini-AERCam (Autonomous Extra-vehicular Robotic Camera), a free-flying video camera system under development at NASA Johnson Space Center for aid in surveillance around the International Space Station (ISS). UWB technology is exploited to implement the tracking system due to its properties, such as high data rate, fine time resolution, and low power spectral density. A system design using commercially available UWB products is proposed. A tracking algorithm TDOA (Time Difference of Arrival) that operates cooperatively with the UWB system is developed in this research effort. Matlab simulations show that the tracking algorithm can achieve fine tracking resolution with low noise TDOA data. Lab experiments demonstrate the UWB tracking capability with fine resolution.

  6. CellTracks cell analysis system for rare cell detection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kagan, Michael T.; Trainer, Michael N.; Bendele, Teresa; Rao, Chandra; Horton, Allen; Tibbe, Arjan G.; Greve, Jan; Terstappen, Leon W.M.M.


    The CellTracks system is a Compact Disk-based cell analyzer that, similar to flow cytometry, differentiates cells that are aligned while passing through focused laser beams. In CellTracks, only immuno-magnetically labeled cells are aligned and remain in position for further analysis. This feature is

  7. Hands-Free System for Bronchoscopy Planning and Guidance. (United States)

    Khare, Rahul; Bascom, Rebecca; Higgins, William E


    Bronchoscopy is a commonly used minimally invasive procedure for lung-cancer staging. In standard practice, however, physicians differ greatly in their levels of performance. To address this concern, image-guided intervention (IGI) systems have been devised to improve procedure success. Current IGI bronchoscopy systems based on virtual bronchoscopic navigation (VBN), however, require involvement from the attending technician. This lessens physician control and hinders the overall acceptance of such systems. We propose a hands-free VBN system for planning and guiding bronchoscopy. The system introduces two major contributions. First, it incorporates a new procedure-planning method that automatically computes airway navigation plans conforming to the physician's bronchoscopy training and manual dexterity. Second, it incorporates a guidance strategy for bronchoscope navigation that enables user-friendly system control via a foot switch, coupled with a novel position-verification mechanism. Phantom studies verified that the system enables smooth operation under physician control, while also enabling faster navigation than an existing technician-assisted VBN system. In a clinical human study, we noted a 97% bronchoscopy navigation success rate, in line with existing VBN systems, and a mean guidance time per diagnostic site = 52 s. This represents a guidance time often nearly 3 min faster per diagnostic site than guidance times reported for other technician-assisted VBN systems. Finally, an ergonomic study further asserts the system's acceptability to the physician and long-term potential.

  8. Circulating Cell Free DNA in the Diagnosis of Trophoblastic Tumors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark R. Openshaw


    Full Text Available Gestational trophoblastic neoplasia (GTN represents a group of diseases characterized by production of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG. Since non-gestational tumors may occasionally secrete hCG, histopathological diagnosis is important for appropriate clinical management. However, a histopathological diagnosis is not always available. We therefore investigated the feasibility of extracting cell free DNA (cfDNA from the plasma of women with GTN for use as a “liquid biopsy” in patients without histopathological diagnosis. cfDNA was prepared from the plasma of 20 women with a diagnosis of GTN and five with hCG-secreting tumors of unknown origin. Genotyping of cfDNA from the patient, genomic DNA from her and her partner and DNA from the tumor tissue identified circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA (from 9% to 53% of total cfDNA in 12 of 20 patients with GTN. In one case without a tissue diagnosis, ctDNA enabled a diagnosis of GTN originating in a non-molar conception and in another a diagnosis of non-gestational tumor, based on the high degree of allelic instability and loss of heterozygosity in the ctDNA. In summary ctDNA can be detected in the plasma of women with GTN and can facilitate the diagnosis of both gestational and non-gestational trophoblastic tumors in cases without histopathological diagnosis.

  9. Circulating Cell Free DNA in the Diagnosis of Trophoblastic Tumors (United States)

    Openshaw, Mark R.; Harvey, Richard A.; Sebire, Neil J.; Kaur, Baljeet; Sarwar, Naveed; Seckl, Michael J.; Fisher, Rosemary A.


    Gestational trophoblastic neoplasia (GTN) represents a group of diseases characterized by production of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG). Since non-gestational tumors may occasionally secrete hCG, histopathological diagnosis is important for appropriate clinical management. However, a histopathological diagnosis is not always available. We therefore investigated the feasibility of extracting cell free DNA (cfDNA) from the plasma of women with GTN for use as a “liquid biopsy” in patients without histopathological diagnosis. cfDNA was prepared from the plasma of 20 women with a diagnosis of GTN and five with hCG-secreting tumors of unknown origin. Genotyping of cfDNA from the patient, genomic DNA from her and her partner and DNA from the tumor tissue identified circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) (from 9% to 53% of total cfDNA) in 12 of 20 patients with GTN. In one case without a tissue diagnosis, ctDNA enabled a diagnosis of GTN originating in a non-molar conception and in another a diagnosis of non-gestational tumor, based on the high degree of allelic instability and loss of heterozygosity in the ctDNA. In summary ctDNA can be detected in the plasma of women with GTN and can facilitate the diagnosis of both gestational and non-gestational trophoblastic tumors in cases without histopathological diagnosis. PMID:26981554

  10. Cell-free circulating tumor DNA in cancer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhen Qin; Vladimir A Ljubimov; Cuiqi Zhou; Yunguang Tong; Jimin Liang


    Cancer is a common cause of death worldwide. Despite significant advances in cancer treatments, the morbidity and mortality are still enormous. Tumor heterogeneity, especially intratumoral heterogeneity, is a significant reason under-lying difculties in tumor treatment and failure of a number of current therapeutic modalities, even of molecularly targeted therapies. The development of a virtually noninvasive“liquid biopsy”from the blood has been attempted to characterize tumor heterogeneity. This review focuses on cell-free circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) in the bloodstream as a versatile biomarker. ctDNA analysis is an evolving field with many new methods being developed and optimized to be able to successfully extract and analyze ctDNA, which has vast clinical applications. ctDNA has the potential to accurately genotype the tumor and identify personalized genetic and epigenetic alterations of the entire tumor. In addition, ctDNA has the potential to accurately monitor tumor burden and treatment response, while also being able to monitor minimal residual disease, reducing the need for harmful adjuvant chemotherapy and allowing more rapid detection of relapse. There are still many challenges that need to be overcome prior to this biomarker getting wide adoption in the clinical world, including optimization, standardization, and large multicenter trials.

  11. A semilinear parabolic system with a free boundary (United States)

    Wang, Mingxin; Zhao, Yonggang


    This paper deals with a semilinear parabolic system with reaction terms {v^p, u^q} and a free boundary {x = s(t)} in one space dimension, where {s(t)} evolves according to the free boundary condition {s'(t) = -μ(u_x + ρ v_x)}. The main aim of this paper was to study the existence, uniqueness, regularity and long-time behavior of positive solution (maximal positive solution). Firstly, we prove that this problem has a unique positive solution when {p, q ≥ 1}, and a (unique) maximal positive solution when {p < 1} or {q < 1}. Then, we study the regularity of {(u,v)} and {s}. At last, we discuss the global existence, finite-time blowup of the unique positive solution (maximal positive solution) and long-time behavior of bounded global solution.

  12. A Free N = 2 Supersymmetric System: Novel Symmetries

    CERN Document Server

    Krishna, S


    We discuss a set of novel discrete symmetries of a free N = 2 supersymmetric (SUSY) quantum mechanical system which is the limiting case of a widely-studied interacting SUSY model of a charged particle constrained to move on a sphere in the background of a Dirac magnetic monopole. The usual continuous symmetries of this model provide the physical realization of the de Rham cohomological operators of differential geometry. The interplay between the novel discrete symmetries and usual continuous symmetries leads to the physical realization of relationship between the (co-)exterior derivatives of differential geometry. We have also exploited the supervariable approach to derive the nilpotent N = 2 SUSY symmetries of the theory and provided the geometrical origin and interpretation for the nilpotency property. Ultimately, our present study (based on innate symmetries) proves that our free N = 2 SUSY example is a tractable model for the Hodge theory.

  13. Light-induced enzyme synthesis in cell suspension cultures of Petroselinum hortense. Demonstration in a heterologous cell-free system of rapid changes in the rate of phenylalanine ammonia-lyase synthesis. (United States)

    Schröder, J; Betz, B; Hahlbrock, K


    The conditions for protein synthesis in vitro with polyribosomes from cell suspension cultures of parsel (Petroselinum hortense) and a wheat-germ extract were investigated. Two different criteria were used as estimated of the translational activity: (a) the total rate of incorporation of [35S]methionine into acid-insoluble material; (b) the ratio of large (molecular weight greater than 25000) to small (molecular weight less than 25000) peptide products. Depending on which of the criteria was employed, the pH optimum and the optimal concentrations for Tris=acetate, magnesium acetate, KCL, methionine and the wheat-germ extract differed considerably. The translational activity of the polyribosomes (both criteria) was effciently protected by 0.1 M Mg2+ against degradation during the isolation procedure. The rate of synthesis of phenylalanine ammonia-lyase in vitro with the polyribosomes was determined by measuring the incorporation rate of L-[35S]methionine into protein which was precipitable by a rabbit antiserum prepared for the purified enzyme. The immunoprecipitate was analyzed by disc gel electrophoresis in the presence of dodecylsulfate and was shown to contain small amounts of the complete enzyme subunits and relatively large amounts of shorter peptides which were also characteristic for the enzyme. The time course of light-induced changes in the rate of phenylalanine ammonia-lyase synthesis in vitro were investigated during a period of 15 h under two different conditions of induction: the cell cultures were irradiated with ultraviolet light eith (A) continuously or (B) for 2.5 h and then returned to darkness. Although the highest rate of enzyme synthesis was observed somewhat later inexperiment A than in experiment B, the periods of time during which the rate of synthesis increased rapidly were limited in both cases to only a few hours. The results obtained in vitro were identical within the limits of the experimental error with theoretical calculations of the

  14. Transceiving protocol design for a free space optical communication system (United States)

    Wang, Hualong; Su, Wanxin; Xing, Zhongbao


    A new transceiving protocol is demonstrated for a Free Space Optical (FSO) communication system, and it's discussed in two parts: the transmitting protocol and the receiving protocol. During the discussion of these two parts, the cooperation of them is also discussed. Different from wired communication, an FSO system modulates the data on a narrow beam of laser transmitting through the free space or the atmosphere, and the protocol presented in this paper is mainly optimized for terrestrial Free Space Optical links, in which the signal channel of the system is mainly the atmosphere. Due to the complex composition and activity of the atmosphere, this signal channel brings in great influence on the transmitting laser in it, for example, the absorption and scattering of the atmosphere molecules and aerosols, the scintillation of received laser power caused by the turbulence of the atmosphere, all of which results in a much higher Bit Error Rate (BER) of the communication system. Thus in designing a protocol for an FSO system, more effort should be taken in the encoding of the data stream, the synchronization of the data stream, error checking and exception handling. The main function of the transmitting protocol includes interfacing the outer input data with a parallel port, buffering the input data, encoding the input data stream, serializing the parallel data and output the serialized data. It also has an output management unit to manage the activity of each part of the transmitting protocol. The main function of the receiving protocol includes filtering and synchronizing the input serial data stream, paralleling the serial data stream, decoding the input data, error checking, exception handling and interfacing the outer receiver with a parallel port. The entire transceiving protocol could be programmed into a single FPGA chip to improve system integrity and reduce the system cost. The presented protocol could be taken as "protocol transparent" for outer interfaces

  15. Human papillomavirus type 18 E6*, E6, and E7 protein synthesis in cell-free translation systems and comparison of E6 and E7 in vitro translation products to proteins immunoprecipitated from human epithelial cells. (United States)

    Roggenbuck, B; Larsen, P M; Fey, S J; Bartsch, D; Gissmann, L; Schwarz, E


    Expression of the E6 and E7 transforming genes of human papillomavirus type 18 (HPV18) occurs via structurally bicistronic mRNAs in which the downstream open reading frame (ORF) E7 is preceded either by the full-length ORF E6 or by a spliced ORF, E6*. We have used in vitro transcription and translation of HPV18 cDNAs in order to analyze the synthesis of E6*, E6, and E7 proteins and to compare the E6 and E7 in vitro translation products with the authentic proteins immunoprecipitated from cervical cancer cells. In wheat germ extract, in vitro translation resulted in the production of all three proteins, E6*, E6, and E7. In rabbit reticulocyte lysate, however, only the E6 and E7 proteins were produced. The lack of E6* protein was due neither to template RNA degradation nor to an inhibitory influence of the RNA 5' leader sequences, thus indicating the possibility of either inhibition of synthesis or degradation of E6* protein in reticulocyte lysate. The E7 protein was synthesized from both E6*-E7 and E6-E7 RNAs. In vitro-synthesized and authentic HPV18 E7 proteins revealed identical electrophoretic mobilities in two-dimensional gel electrophoresis, thus indicating similar modifications. By using a monoclonal antibody against the N terminus of HPV18 E6* and E6, an 18-kDa protein was detected not only in HPV18-positive but also in HPV18-negative epithelial cells. The 18-kDa proteins and the in vitro-synthesized HPV18 E6 protein exhibited comparable electrophoretic characteristics in two-dimensional gels. These results suggest the possible existence of a cellular protein related to HPV18 E6.

  16. Microfluidic devices for label-free separation of cells through transient interaction with asymmetric receptor patterns (United States)

    Bose, S.; Singh, R.; Hollatz, M. H.; Lee, C.-H.; Karp, J.; Karnik, R.


    Cell sorting serves an important role in clinical diagnosis and biological research. Most of the existing microscale sorting techniques are either non-specific to antigen type or rely on capturing cells making sample recovery difficult. We demonstrate a simple; yet effective technique for isolating cells in an antigen specific manner by using transient interactions of the cell surface antigens with asymmetric receptor patterned surface. Using microfluidic devices incorporating P-selectin patterns we demonstrate separation of HL60 cells from K562 cells. We achieved a sorting purity above 90% and efficiency greater than 85% with this system. We also present a mathematical model incorporating flow mediated and adhesion mediated transport of cells in the microchannel that can be used to predict the performance of these devices. Lastly, we demonstrate the clinical significance of the method by demonstrating single step separation of neutrophils from whole blood. When whole blood is introduced in the device, the granulocyte population gets separated exclusively yielding neutrophils of high purity (<10% RBC contamination). To our knowledge, this is the first ever demonstration of continuous label free sorting of neutrophils from whole blood. We believe this technology will be useful in developing point-of-care diagnostic devices and also for a host of cell sorting applications.

  17. Derivation of transgene-free human induced pluripotent stem cells from human peripheral T cells in defined culture conditions. (United States)

    Kishino, Yoshikazu; Seki, Tomohisa; Fujita, Jun; Yuasa, Shinsuke; Tohyama, Shugo; Kunitomi, Akira; Tabei, Ryota; Nakajima, Kazuaki; Okada, Marina; Hirano, Akinori; Kanazawa, Hideaki; Fukuda, Keiichi


    Recently, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) were established as promising cell sources for revolutionary regenerative therapies. The initial culture system used for iPSC generation needed fetal calf serum in the culture medium and mouse embryonic fibroblast as a feeder layer, both of which could possibly transfer unknown exogenous antigens and pathogens into the iPSC population. Therefore, the development of culture systems designed to minimize such potential risks has become increasingly vital for future applications of iPSCs for clinical use. On another front, although donor cell types for generating iPSCs are wide-ranging, T cells have attracted attention as unique cell sources for iPSCs generation because T cell-derived iPSCs (TiPSCs) have a unique monoclonal T cell receptor genomic rearrangement that enables their differentiation into antigen-specific T cells, which can be applied to novel immunotherapies. In the present study, we generated transgene-free human TiPSCs using a combination of activated human T cells and Sendai virus under defined culture conditions. These TiPSCs expressed pluripotent markers by quantitative PCR and immunostaining, had a normal karyotype, and were capable of differentiating into cells from all three germ layers. This method of TiPSCs generation is more suitable for the therapeutic application of iPSC technology because it lowers the risks associated with the presence of undefined, animal-derived feeder cells and serum. Therefore this work will lead to establishment of safer iPSCs and extended clinical application.

  18. Extracellular Matrix-Dependent Generation of Integration- and Xeno-Free iPS Cells Using a Modified mRNA Transfection Method. (United States)

    Lee, Kang-In; Lee, Seo-Young; Hwang, Dong-Youn


    Human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS cells) hold great promise in the field of regenerative medicine, especially immune-compatible cell therapy. The most important safety-related issues that must be resolved before the clinical use of iPS cells include the generation of "footprint-free" and "xeno-free" iPS cells. In this study, we sought to examine whether an extracellular matrix- (ECM-) based xeno-free culture system that we recently established could be used together with a microRNA-enhanced mRNA reprogramming method for the generation of clinically safe iPS cells. The notable features of this method are the use of a xeno-free/feeder-free culture system for the generation and expansion of iPS cells rather than the conventional labor-intensive culture systems using human feeder cells or human feeder-conditioned medium and the enhancement of mRNA-mediated reprogramming via the delivery of microRNAs. Strikingly, we observed the early appearance of iPS cell colonies (~11 days), substantial reprogramming efficiency (~0.2-0.3%), and a high percentage of ESC-like colonies among the total colonies (~87.5%), indicating enhanced kinetics and reprogramming efficiency. Therefore, the combined method established in this study provides a valuable platform for the generation and expansion of clinically safe (i.e., integration- and xeno-free) iPS cells, facilitating immune-matched cell therapy in the near future.

  19. Serum-free media for the production of human mesenchymal stromal cells: a review. (United States)

    Gottipamula, S; Muttigi, M S; Kolkundkar, U; Seetharam, R N


    The regenerative potential of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) holds great promise in using them for treatment of a wide range of debilitating diseases. Several types of culture media and systems have been used for large-scale expansion of MSCs in vitro; however, the majority of them rely heavily on using foetal bovine serum (FBS)-supplement for optimal cell proliferation. FBS-based cultures pose the potential threat of spread of transmissible spongiform encephalopathy and bovine spongiform encephalopathy to MSCs and then to their recipients. A recent trend in cell culture is to change from serum-use to serum-free media (SFM). In this context, the current review focuses specifically on employment of various SFM for MSCs and discusses existences of various options with which to substitute FBS. In addition, we analyse MSC population growth kinetic patterns using various SFM for large-scale production of MSCs.

  20. Label-free Imaging of Arterial Cells and Extracellular Matrix Using a Multimodal CARS Microscope. (United States)

    Wang, Han-Wei; Le, Thuc T; Cheng, Ji-Xin


    A multimodal nonlinear optical imaging system that integrates coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS), sum-frequency generation (SFG), and two-photon excitation fluorescence (TPEF) on the same platform was developed and applied to visualize single cells and extracellular matrix in fresh carotid arteries. CARS signals arising from CH(2)-rich membranes allowed visualization of endothelial cells and smooth muscle cells of the arterial wall. Additionally, CARS microscopy allowed vibrational imaging of elastin and collagen fibrils which are also rich in CH(2) bonds. The extracellular matrix organization were further confirmed by TPEF signals arising from elastin's autofluorescence and SFG signals arising from collagen fibrils' non-centrosymmetric structure. Label-free imaging of significant components of arterial tissues suggests the potential application of multimodal nonlinear optical microscopy to monitor onset and progression of arterial diseases.

  1. Optimizing Immobilized Enzyme Performance in Cell-Free Environments to Produce Liquid Fuels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Belfort, Georges [Rensselaer Polytechnic Inst., Troy, NY (United States). Dept. of Chemical and Biological Engineering; Grimaldi, Joseph J. [Rensselaer Polytechnic Inst., Troy, NY (United States). Dept. of Chemical and Biological Engineering


    Limitations on biofuel production using cell culture (Escherichia coli, Clostridium, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, brown microalgae, blue-green algae and others) include low product (alcohol) concentrations (≤0.2 vol%) due to feedback inhibition, instability of cells, and lack of economical product recovery processes. To overcome these challenges, an alternate simplified biofuel production scheme was tested based on a cell-free immobilized enzyme system. Using this cell free system, we were able to obtain about 2.6 times higher concentrations of iso-butanol using our non-optimized system as compared with live cell systems. This process involved two steps: (i) converts acid to aldehyde using keto-acid decarboxylase (KdcA), and (ii) produces alcohol from aldehyde using alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) with a cofactor (NADH) conversion from inexpensive formate using a third enzyme, formate dehydrogenase (FDH). To increase stability and conversion efficiency with easy separations, the first two enzymes were immobilized onto methacrylate resin. Fusion proteins of labile KdcA (fKdcA) were expressed to stabilize the covalently immobilized KdcA. Covalently immobilized ADH exhibited long-term stability and efficient conversion of aldehyde to alcohol over multiple batch cycles without fusions. High conversion rates and low protein leaching were achieved by covalent immobilization of enzymes on methacrylate resin. The complete reaction scheme was demonstrated by immobilizing both ADH and fKdcA and using FDH free in solution. The new system without in situ removal of isobutanol achieved a 55% conversion of ketoisovaleric acid to isobutanol at a concentration of 0.5 % (v/v). Further increases in titer will require continuous removal of the isobutanol using our novel brush membrane system that exhibits a 1.5 fold increase in the separation factor of isobutanol from water versus that obtained for commercial silicone rubber membranes. These bio-inspired brush membranes are based on the

  2. Chemically defined serum-free and xeno-free media for multiple cell lineages


    Usta, Sümeyra Naz; Scharer, Christopher D.; Xu, Jie; Frey, Teryl K.; Nash, Rodney J


    Cell culture is one of the most common methods used to recapitulate a human disease environment in a laboratory setting. Cell culture techniques are used to grow and maintain cells of various types including those derived from primary tissues, such as stem cells and cancer tumors. However, a major confounding factor with cell culture is the use of serum and animal (xeno) products in the media. The addition of animal products introduces batch and lot variations that lead to experimental variab...

  3. Water free proton conducting membranes based on poly-4-vinylpyridinebisulfate for fuel cells (United States)

    Narayanan, Sekharipuram R. (Inventor); Yen, Shiao-Pin S. (Inventor)


    Disclosed are methods for forming a water-free electrolyte membrane useful in fuel cells. Also provided is a water-free electrolyte membrane comprising a quaternized amine salt including poly-4-vinylpyridinebisulfate, a poly-4-vinylpyridinebisulfate silica composite, and a combination thereof and a fuel cell comprising the membrane.

  4. Absolute first trimester cell-free DNA levels and their associations with adverse pregnancy outcomes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Thurik, Florentine F; Lamain-de Ruiter, Marije; Javadi, Ahmad; Kwee, Anneke; Woortmeijer, Heleen; Page-Christiaens, Godelieve C M L; Franx, Arie; van der Schoot, C Ellen; Koster, Maria P H


    OBJECTIVE: To study associations of first trimester cell-free fetal DNA levels (in this paper referred to as cell-free placental DNA (cfpDNA) levels) and preeclampsia (PE), pregnancy-induced hypertension (PIH), gestational diabetes (GDM) and spontaneous preterm birth (sPB). METHOD: A nested case-con

  5. Activity targets for nanostructured platinum-group-metal-free catalysts in hydroxide exchange membrane fuel cells. (United States)

    Setzler, Brian P; Zhuang, Zhongbin; Wittkopf, Jarrid A; Yan, Yushan


    Fuel cells are the zero-emission automotive power source that best preserves the advantages of gasoline automobiles: low upfront cost, long driving range and fast refuelling. To make fuel-cell cars a reality, the US Department of Energy has set a fuel cell system cost target of US$30 kW(-1) in the long-term, which equates to US$2,400 per vehicle, excluding several major powertrain components (in comparison, a basic, but complete, internal combustion engine system costs approximately US$3,000). To date, most research for automotive applications has focused on proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs), because these systems have demonstrated the highest power density. Recently, however, an alternative technology, hydroxide exchange membrane fuel cells (HEMFCs), has gained significant attention, because of the possibility to use stable platinum-group-metal-free catalysts, with inherent, long-term cost advantages. In this Perspective, we discuss the cost profile of PEMFCs and the advantages offered by HEMFCs. In particular, we discuss catalyst development needs for HEMFCs and set catalyst activity targets to achieve performance parity with state-of-the-art automotive PEMFCs. Meeting these targets requires careful optimization of nanostructures to pack high surface areas into a small volume, while maintaining high area-specific activity and favourable pore-transport properties.

  6. Activity targets for nanostructured platinum-group-metal-free catalysts in hydroxide exchange membrane fuel cells (United States)

    Setzler, Brian P.; Zhuang, Zhongbin; Wittkopf, Jarrid A.; Yan, Yushan


    Fuel cells are the zero-emission automotive power source that best preserves the advantages of gasoline automobiles: low upfront cost, long driving range and fast refuelling. To make fuel-cell cars a reality, the US Department of Energy has set a fuel cell system cost target of US$30 kW-1 in the long-term, which equates to US$2,400 per vehicle, excluding several major powertrain components (in comparison, a basic, but complete, internal combustion engine system costs approximately US$3,000). To date, most research for automotive applications has focused on proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs), because these systems have demonstrated the highest power density. Recently, however, an alternative technology, hydroxide exchange membrane fuel cells (HEMFCs), has gained significant attention, because of the possibility to use stable platinum-group-metal-free catalysts, with inherent, long-term cost advantages. In this Perspective, we discuss the cost profile of PEMFCs and the advantages offered by HEMFCs. In particular, we discuss catalyst development needs for HEMFCs and set catalyst activity targets to achieve performance parity with state-of-the-art automotive PEMFCs. Meeting these targets requires careful optimization of nanostructures to pack high surface areas into a small volume, while maintaining high area-specific activity and favourable pore-transport properties.

  7. Actuator prototype system by voice commands using free software

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaime Andrango


    Full Text Available This prototype system is a software application that through the use of techniques of digital signal processing, extracts information from the user's speech, which is then used to manage the on/off actuator on a peripheral computer when vowels are pronounced. The method applies spectral differences. The application uses the parallel port as actuator, with the information recorded in the memory address 378H. This prototype was developed using free software tools for its versatility and dynamism, and to allow other researchers to base on it for further studies.

  8. A Hands-Free Obstacle Detection and Avoidance System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Abdul-Niby


    Full Text Available In this paper, we present a low cost hands-free detection and avoidance system designed to provide mobility assistance for visually impaired people. An ultrasonic sensor is attached to the jacket of the user and detects the obstacles in front. The information obtained is transferred to the user through audio messages and also by a vibration. The range of the detection is user-defined. A text-to-speech module is employed for the voice signal. The proposed obstacle avoidance device is cost effective, easy to use and easily upgraded.

  9. Free Fermionic Heterotic Model Building and Root Systems

    CERN Document Server

    Robinson, M; Hunziker, M


    We consider an alternative derivation of the GSO Projection in the free fermionic construction of the weakly coupled heterotic string in terms of root systems, as well as the interpretation of the GSO Projection in this picture. We then present an algorithm to systematically and efficiently generate input sets (i.e. basis vectors) in order to study Landscape statistics with minimal computational cost. For example, the improvement at order 6 is approximately 10^{-13} over a traditional brute force approach, and improvement increases with order. We then consider an example of statistics on a relatively simple class of models.

  10. Non-standard amino acid incorporation into proteins using Escherichia coli cell-free protein synthesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seok Hoon eHong


    Full Text Available Incorporating non-standard amino acids (NSAAs into proteins enables new chemical properties, new structures, and new functions. In recent years, improvements in cell-free protein synthesis (CFPS systems have opened the way to accurate and efficient incorporation of NSAAs into proteins. The driving force behind this development has been three-fold. First, a technical renaissance has enabled high-yielding (>1 g/L and long-lasting (>10 h in batch operation CFPS in systems derived from Escherichia coli. Second, the efficiency of orthogonal translation systems has improved. Third, the open nature of the CFPS platform has brought about an unprecedented level of control and freedom of design. Here, we review recent developments in CFPS platforms designed to precisely incorporate NSAAs. In the coming years, we anticipate that CFPS systems will impact efforts to elucidate structure/function relationships of proteins and to make biomaterials and sequence-defined biopolymers for medical and industrial applications.

  11. Derivation and characterization of human embryonic germ cells: serum-free culture and differentiation potential. (United States)

    Hua, Jinlian; Yu, Haisheng; Liu, Sheng; Dou, Zhongying; Sun, Yadong; Jing, Xiaoqi; Yang, Chunrong; Lei, Anmin; Wang, Huayan; Gao, Zhimin


    This study examined the effects of a chemically defined culture medium supplement, knock-out serum replacement (KSR), on the growth and differentiation of human embryonic germ cells (hEgc) and found that the efficiency of the initial establishment of hEGC lines in KSR medium was significantly higher than in fetal calf serum (FCS) medium. The percentage of undifferentiated hEGC colonies growing in KSR medium was significantly higher than in FCS-based medium (P embryonic germ cell-like morphology. They showed normal and stable diploid karyotype and expressed alkaline phosphatase (AP), stage-specific embryonic antigens (SSEA) and other specific markers of pluripotent cells. In addition, hEGC could form simple and cystic embryoid bodies (EB) that consisted of various cell types including neural, epithelial and rhythmically beating cardiac cells, even sperm-like and oocyte-like cells. Tumour-like outgrowths were formed in nude mice and found to contain a variety of cell types, including uterine epithelium, adipocytes, squamous tissue and skin structures. In conclusion, an appropriate serum-free culture system has been developed for the establishment of hEGC lines. This may provide an in-vitro model to study differentiation and can be used as a potential source of therapy for infertility and regenerative medicine.

  12. Projection-free approximate balanced truncation of large unstable systems (United States)

    Flinois, Thibault L. B.; Morgans, Aimee S.; Schmid, Peter J.


    In this article, we show that the projection-free, snapshot-based, balanced truncation method can be applied directly to unstable systems. We prove that even for unstable systems, the unmodified balanced proper orthogonal decomposition algorithm theoretically yields a converged transformation that balances the Gramians (including the unstable subspace). We then apply the method to a spatially developing unstable system and show that it results in reduced-order models of similar quality to the ones obtained with existing methods. Due to the unbounded growth of unstable modes, a practical restriction on the final impulse response simulation time appears, which can be adjusted depending on the desired order of the reduced-order model. Recommendations are given to further reduce the cost of the method if the system is large and to improve the performance of the method if it does not yield acceptable results in its unmodified form. Finally, the method is applied to the linearized flow around a cylinder at Re = 100 to show that it actually is able to accurately reproduce impulse responses for more realistic unstable large-scale systems in practice. The well-established approximate balanced truncation numerical framework therefore can be safely applied to unstable systems without any modifications. Additionally, balanced reduced-order models can readily be obtained even for large systems, where the computational cost of existing methods is prohibitive.

  13. Label-free detection of circulating melanoma cells by in vivo photoacoustic flow cytometry (United States)

    Wang, Xiaoling; Yang, Ping; Liu, Rongrong; Niu, Zhenyu; Suo, Yuanzhen; He, Hao; Gao, Wenyuan; Tang, Shuo; Wei, Xunbin


    Melanoma is a malignant tumor of melanocytes. Melanoma cells have high light absorption due to melanin highly contained in melanoma cells. This property is employed for the detection of circulating melanoma cell by in vivo photoacoustic flow cytometry (PAFC), which is based on photoacoustic effect. Compared to in vivo flow cytometry based on fluorescence, PAFC can employ high melanin content of melanoma cells as endogenous biomarkers to detect circulating melanoma cells in vivo. We have developed in vitro experiments to prove the ability of PAFC system of detecting photoacoustic signals from melanoma cells. For in vivo experiments, we have constructed a model of melanoma tumor bearing mice by inoculating highly metastatic murine melanoma cancer cells, B16F10 with subcutaneous injection. PA signals are detected in the blood vessels of mouse ears in vivo. The raw signal detected from target cells often contains some noise caused by electronic devices, such as background noise and thermal noise. We choose the Wavelet denoising method to effectively distinguish the target signal from background noise. Processing in time domain and frequency domain would be combined to analyze the signal after denoising. This algorithm contains time domain filter and frequency transformation. The frequency spectrum image of the signal contains distinctive features that can be used to analyze the property of target cells or particles. The processing methods have a great potential for analyzing signals accurately and rapidly. By counting circulating melanoma cells termly, we obtain the number variation of circulating melanoma cells as melanoma metastasized. Those results show that PAFC is a noninvasive and label-free method to detect melanoma metastases in blood or lymph circulation.

  14. Immunoglobulin free light chains: new insights in mast cell activation and immunology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Thio, M.


    In this thesis, several studies are described that elaborate on the biological properties of immunoglobulin free light chains (Ig-fLC) related to the activation of mast cells and effects on other cells. Mast cell degranulation through Ig-fLC requires two events. At first, mast cell-bound Ig-fLCs sho

  15. Optimizing front metallization patterns: Efficiency with aesthetics in free-form solar cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gupta, D.K.; Langelaar, M.; Barink, M.; Keulen, F. van


    Free-form solar cells are cells of unconventional shapes (e.g. hexagonal, leaf-shaped etc). Their flexible shape adds to the aesthetics of the surroundings as well as allows to place them over objects where conventional solar cells might not fit. Evidently, these cells need to be efficient as well,

  16. Scattering pulse of label free fine structure cells to determine the size scale of scattering structures (United States)

    Zhang, Lu; Chen, Xingyu; Zhang, Zhenxi; Chen, Wei; Zhao, Hong; Zhao, Xin; Li, Kaixing; Yuan, Li


    Scattering pulse is sensitive to the morphology and components of each single label-free cell. The most direct detection result, label free cell's scattering pulse is studied in this paper as a novel trait to recognize large malignant cells from small normal cells. A set of intrinsic scattering pulse calculation method is figured out, which combines both hydraulic focusing theory and small particle's scattering principle. Based on the scattering detection angle ranges of widely used flow cytometry, the scattering pulses formed by cell scattering energy in forward scattering angle 2°-5° and side scattering angle 80°-110° are discussed. Combining the analysis of cell's illuminating light energy, the peak, area, and full width at half maximum (FWHM) of label free cells' scattering pulses for fine structure cells with diameter 1-20 μm are studied to extract the interrelations of scattering pulse's features and cell's morphology. The theoretical and experimental results show that cell's diameter and FWHM of its scattering pulse agree with approximate linear distribution; the peak and area of scattering pulse do not always increase with cell's diameter becoming larger, but when cell's diameter is less than about 16 μm the monotone increasing relation of scattering pulse peak or area with cell's diameter can be obtained. This relationship between the features of scattering pulse and cell's size is potentially a useful but very simple criterion to distinguishing malignant and normal cells by their sizes and morphologies in label free cells clinical examinations.

  17. Antibody-free magnetic cell sorting of genetically modified primary human CD4+ T cells by one-step streptavidin affinity purification.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas J Matheson

    Full Text Available Existing methods for phenotypic selection of genetically modified mammalian cells suffer disadvantages of time, cost and scalability and, where antibodies are used to bind exogenous cell surface markers for magnetic selection, typically yield cells coated with antibody-antigen complexes and beads. To overcome these limitations we have developed a method termed Antibody-Free Magnetic Cell Sorting in which the 38 amino acid Streptavidin Binding Peptide (SBP is displayed at the cell surface by the truncated Low Affinity Nerve Growth Receptor (LNGFRF and used as an affinity tag for one-step selection with streptavidin-conjugated magnetic beads. Cells are released through competition with the naturally occurring vitamin biotin, free of either beads or antibody-antigen complexes and ready for culture or use in downstream applications. Antibody-Free Magnetic Cell Sorting is a rapid, cost-effective, scalable method of magnetic selection applicable to either viral transduction or transient transfection of cell lines or primary cells. We have optimised the system for enrichment of primary human CD4+ T cells expressing shRNAs and exogenous genes of interest to purities of >99%, and used it to isolate cells following Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing.

  18. Quantitative imaging of free and total intracellular calcium in cultured cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chandra, S.; Gross, D.; Ling, Yongchien; Morrison, G.H. (Cornell Univ., Ithaca, NY (USA))


    Techniques of fluorescence and ion microscopies were combined to study the free Ca{sup 2+}- and total Ca in NIH 3T3 fibroblast and L6 rat myoblast cells. Free Ca{sup 2+} measurements with the Ca{sup 2+} indicator fura-2 and digital imaging reveal an inhomogeneous distribution of free cytoplasmic Ca{sup 2+} in both cell lines. Fura-2 also reveals a difference in free Ca{sup 2+} activity between the nucleus and cytoplasm of cells. Ion microscopic observations on sister cells show that total Ca in the cytoplasm is also inhomogeneously distributed and that mean cytoplasmic levels of total Ca are higher than levels in the nuclei. In the nuclei of NIH 3T3 cells, the mean free (Ca{sup 2+}) and total (Ca) were 110 {plus minus} 30 nM and 225 {plus minus} 43 {mu}M, respectively, while regions in the cell cytoplasm contained up to 490 {plus minus} 270 nM free (Ca{sup 2+}) and 559 {plus minus} 184 {mu}M mean total (Ca). Intracellular total Ca was >3 orders of magnitude higher than intracellular free Ca{sup 2+} in either nuclear or cytoplasmic compartments. Perinuclear cytoplasmic regions in 3T3 cells contained higher free and total Ca than the cell nucleus. Loading of cells with fura-2 did not modify the subcellular distribution of total K, Na, Ca, or Mg. This combination of two powerful ion imaging techniques provides a comparison between free and total calcium in cells and introduces a different approach for examining the role of this important element in cell physiology.

  19. System-size dependence of the free energy of crystalline solids. (United States)

    de Miguel, Enrique; Marguta, Ramona G; del Río, Elvira M


    We investigate the system-size dependence of the Helmholtz free energy of crystalline solids from computer simulation. We employ a standard thermodynamic integration technique along a reversible path that links the crystalline solid with a noninteracting Einstein crystal with the same structure. The key contribution to the free energy is computed by using the so-called expanded-ensemble technique and the results are compared with those obtained from conventional integration of the derivative of the free energy along the path using Gaussian-Legendre quadrature. We find that both methods yield fully consistent results. The free energy is found to exhibit a strong dependence with system size, in agreement with the behavior found by Polson et al. [J. Chem. Phys. 112, 5339 (2000)] but at variance with the dependence reported more recently by Chang and Sandler [J. Chem. Phys. 118, 8390 (2003)]. This has been tested for the face-centered cubic (fcc) and hexagonal close-packed phases of a crystal of hard spheres at a density close to the melting point. We also investigate any possible dependence of the free energy of the solid phase with the shape of the simulation box. We find that this contribution may not be as important as previous investigations suggest. The present results seem to indicate that there is a non-negligible contribution to the free energy arising from the orientation of the closed-packed crystal layers with respect to the simulation cell. This contribution is particularly noticeable for small system sizes and is believed to be an effect of the periodic boundary conditions used in the simulations. The results presented here corroborate the stability of the fcc phase of the hard-sphere solid close to melting.

  20. Advanced feeder-free generation of induced pluripotent stem cells directly from blood cells. (United States)

    Trokovic, Ras; Weltner, Jere; Nishimura, Ken; Ohtaka, Manami; Nakanishi, Mahito; Salomaa, Veikko; Jalanko, Anu; Otonkoski, Timo; Kyttälä, Aija


    Generation of validated human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) for biobanking is essential for exploring the full potential of iPSCs in disease modeling and drug discovery. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) are attractive targets for reprogramming, because blood is collected by a routine clinical procedure and is a commonly stored material in biobanks. Generation of iPSCs from blood cells has previously been reported using integrative retroviruses, episomal Sendai viruses, and DNA plasmids. However, most of the published protocols require expansion and/or activation of a specific cell population from PBMCs. We have recently collected a PBMC cohort from the Finnish population containing more than 2,000 subjects. Here we report efficient generation of iPSCs directly from PBMCs in feeder-free conditions in approximately 2 weeks. The produced iPSC clones are pluripotent and transgene-free. Together, these properties make this novel method a powerful tool for large-scale reprogramming of PBMCs and for iPSC biobanking.

  1. XUV free-electron laser-based projection lithography systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Newnam, B.E.


    Free-electron laser sources, driven by rf-linear accelerators, have the potential to operate in the extreme ultraviolet (XUV) spectral range with more than sufficient average power for high-volume projection lithography. For XUV wavelengths from 100 nm to 4 nm, such sources will enable the resolution limit of optical projection lithography to be extended from 0.25 {mu}m to 0.05{mu}m and with an adequate total depth of focus (1 to 2 {mu}m). Recent developments of a photoinjector of very bright electron beams, high-precision magnetic undulators, and ring-resonator cavities raise our confidence that FEL operation below 100 nm is ready for prototype demonstration. We address the motivation for an XUV FEL source for commercial microcircuit production and its integration into a lithographic system, include reflecting reduction masks, reflecting XUV projection optics and alignment systems, and surface-imaging photoresists. 52 refs., 7 figs.

  2. Strategies for adaptation of mAb-producing CHO cells to serum-free medium


    Costa A; Rodrigues M.; Henriques Mariana; Oliveira Rosário; Azeredo Joana


    Large-scale production of biopharmaceuticals commonly requires the use of serum-free medium, for safety and cost reasons. However, serum is essential to most mammalian cells growth, and its removal implies a very time-consuming process for cell adaptation. Thus, the aim of the study was to evaluate different strategies for cell adaptation to serum-free medium. Three cell types were used to assess the impact of transfection on adaptation: one common CHO-K1 cell line and two CHO-K1 cells tr...

  3. Achievements and Problems of Reform of Investment Management System for Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chengrong; PAN


    The establishment of Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone provides many possibilities for China’s economic construction. This paper made a comparative analysis on investment management system of Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone and traditional investment management system,discussed achievements and problems of reform of investment management system of Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone,and finally came up with pertinent policy recommendations.

  4. Microchannel-free collection and single-cell isolation of yeast cells in a suspension using liquid standing wave (United States)

    Matsutani, Akihiro; Takada, Ayako


    We demonstrate a microchannel-free collection method at nodes of liquid standing waves by the vertical vibration of a suspension including yeast cells. The pattern formation of the collection of cells using standing waves in a suspension was investigated by varying the frequency and waveform of vibrations. The single-cell isolation of yeast cells was achieved using a microenclosure array set at the nodes. In addition, we succeeded in the microchannel-free collection of yeast cells in a suspension, where patterns were formed by tapping vibration. The proposed technique is very simple and we believe that it will be useful for single-cell analysis and investigation.

  5. Systems biomechanics of the cell

    CERN Document Server

    Maly, Ivan V


    Systems Biomechanics of the Cell attempts to outline systems biomechanics of the cell as an emergent and promising discipline. The new field owes conceptually to cell mechanics, organism-level systems biomechanics, and biology of biochemical systems. Its distinct methodology is to elucidate the structure and behavior of the cell by analyzing the unintuitive collective effects of elementary physical forces that interact within the heritable cellular framework. The problematics amenable to this approach includes the variety of cellular activities that involve the form and movement of the cell body and boundary (nucleus, centrosome, microtubules, cortex, and membrane). Among the elementary system effects in the biomechanics of the cell, instability of symmetry, emergent irreversibility, and multiperiodic dissipative motion can be noted. Research results from recent journal articles are placed in this unifying framework. It is suggested that the emergent discipline has the potential to expand the spectrum of ques...

  6. Analysis of immune cells within the healthy oral mucosa of specific pathogen-free cats. (United States)

    Arzi, B; Murphy, B; Baumgarth, N; Vapniarsky, N; Nemec, A; Naydan, D K; Cox, D P; Verstraete, F J M


    The oral mucosa is an important interface for host-environment interactions. Based on previous studies, it is generally accepted that the cellular compartments of the oral immune system comprise organized mucosal-associated lymphoid tissues as well as diffusely and focally distributed T- and to lesser extent B-lymphocytes, oral mucosal Langerhans cells (OMLC), macrophages and mast cells. However, a comprehensive quantification of the cellular elements in the oral mucous membranes of the cat has not been reported. The aim of this study was to provide a comprehensive analysis of the immune cell compartments in the oral mucous membranes and anatomically related tissues of healthy cats. Multiple biopsies of the oral mucous membranes and related tissues were obtained from four specific pathogen-free cats for histological and immunohistochemical assessment of lymphocyte subsets, OMLC, macrophages and mast cells. T-lymphocyte subsets, OMLC, mast cells and macrophages were present in varying frequencies among the tissue compartments of the feline oral cavity. B-lymphocytes were not identified in any of the examined tissues except the tonsils and mandibular lymph nodes. Lymphocytic aggregates (follicles) were found in the palatoglossal folds and the gingiva. We describe the topographical distribution of various leucocyte subsets in the normal healthy feline oral mucosa, and demonstrate regional differences in the distribution of these cells.

  7. Detection of atomic scale changes in the free volume void size of three-dimensional colorectal cancer cell culture using positron annihilation lifetime spectroscopy. (United States)

    Axpe, Eneko; Lopez-Euba, Tamara; Castellanos-Rubio, Ainara; Merida, David; Garcia, Jose Angel; Plaza-Izurieta, Leticia; Fernandez-Jimenez, Nora; Plazaola, Fernando; Bilbao, Jose Ramon


    Positron annihilation lifetime spectroscopy (PALS) provides a direct measurement of the free volume void sizes in polymers and biological systems. This free volume is critical in explaining and understanding physical and mechanical properties of polymers. Moreover, PALS has been recently proposed as a potential tool in detecting cancer at early stages, probing the differences in the subnanometer scale free volume voids between cancerous/healthy skin samples of the same patient. Despite several investigations on free volume in complex cancerous tissues, no positron annihilation studies of living cancer cell cultures have been reported. We demonstrate that PALS can be applied to the study in human living 3D cell cultures. The technique is also capable to detect atomic scale changes in the size of the free volume voids due to the biological responses to TGF-β. PALS may be developed to characterize the effect of different culture conditions in the free volume voids of cells grown in vitro.

  8. Projection-free approximate balanced truncation of large unstable systems

    CERN Document Server

    Flinois, Thibault L B; Schmid, Peter J


    In this article, we show that the projection-free, snapshot-based, balanced truncation method can be applied directly to unstable systems. We prove that even for unstable systems, the unmodified balanced proper orthogonal decomposition algorithm theoretically yields a converged transformation that balances the Gramians (including the unstable subspace). We then apply the method to a spatially developing unstable system and show that it results in reduced-order models of similar quality to the ones obtained with existing methods. Due to the unbounded growth of unstable modes, a practical restriction on the final impulse response simulation time appears, which can be adjusted depending on the desired order of the reduced-order model. Recommendations are given to further reduce the cost of the method if the system is large and to improve the performance of the method if it does not yield acceptable results in its unmodified form. Finally, the method is applied to the linearized flow around a cylinder at Re = 100...

  9. A microfluidic multiwell chip for enzyme-free detection of mRNA from few cells. (United States)

    Haider, Michaela; Ji, Bozhi; Haselgrübler, Thomas; Sonnleitner, Alois; Aberger, Fritz; Hesse, Jan


    Isogenic cell populations possess heterogeneous gene expression patterns. Most methods for mRNA expression analysis start with the reverse transcription of mRNA into cDNA, a process that can introduce strong signal variations not related to the actual mRNA levels. Miniaturized lab-on-a-chip systems offer properties - e.g. low sample dilution, low contamination - that enable new reaction schemes for molecular analyses. To enable transcription-free mRNA expression analysis of few single cells, a one-step cell lysis, target labelling and hybridisation approach as well as a corresponding passive multiwell chip with a volume of 25.5 nL/well were developed. The method enabled the parallel analysis of up to 96 samples and 6 target genes per sample. Preceding light microscopy of the living cells allowed correlating mRNA levels and cell number. As a proof-of-principle, the pancreatic cancer cell line Panc-1 was investigated for expression heterogeneity of a reference gene plus 5 genes reported to be overexpressed in cancer stem cells (CSCs). A good correlation (r(51)=0.739, p<0.001; rs(51)=0.744, p<0.001) between the cell number per well and the number of detected reference gene mRNA confirmed the proper function of the device. Moreover, a heterogeneous expression of the CSC-associated target genes was found which matched well with reports on the presence of CSCs in the Panc-1 cell line.

  10. 21 CFR 862.1245 - Dehydroepiandrosterone (free and sulfate) test system. (United States)


    ... HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL DEVICES CLINICAL CHEMISTRY AND CLINICAL TOXICOLOGY DEVICES Clinical Chemistry Test Systems § 862.1245 Dehydroepiandrosterone (free and sulfate) test system. (a)...

  11. Advanced free space optics (FSO) a systems approach

    CERN Document Server

    Majumdar, Arun K


    This book provides a comprehensive, unified tutorial covering the most recent advances in the technology of free-space optics (FSO). It is an all-inclusive source of information on the fundamentals of FSO as well as up-to-date information on the state-of-the-art in technologies available today. This text is intended for graduate students, and will also be useful for research scientists and engineers with an interest in the field. FSO communication is a practical solution for creating a three dimensional global broadband communications grid, offering bandwidths far beyond what is possible in the Radio Frequency (RF) range. However, the attributes of atmospheric turbulence and scattering impose perennial limitations on availability and reliability of FSO links. From a systems point-of-view, this groundbreaking book provides a thorough understanding of channel behavior, which can be used to design and evaluate optimum transmission techniques that operate under realistic atmospheric conditions. Topics addressed...

  12. Protocols for Relay-Assisted Free-Space Optical Systems

    CERN Document Server

    Chatzidiamantis, Nestor D; Kriezis, Emmanouil E; Karagiannidis, George K; Schober, Robert


    We investigate transmission protocols for relay-assisted free-space optical (FSO) systems, when multiple parallel relays are employed and there is no direct link between the source and the destination. As alternatives to all-active FSO relaying, where all the available relays transmit concurrently, we propose schemes that select only a single relay to participate in the communication between the source and the destination in each transmission slot. This selection is based on the channel state information (CSI) obtained either from all or from some of the FSO links. Thus, the need for synchronizing the relays' transmissions is avoided and the slowly varying nature of the atmospheric channel is exploited. For both relay selection and all-active relaying, novel closed-form expressions for their outage performance are derived, assuming the versatile Gamma-Gamma channel model. Furthermore, based on the derived analytical results, the problem of allocating the optical power resources to the FSO links is addressed, ...

  13. Iron free permanent magnet systems for charged particle beam optics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lund, S.M.; Halbach, K.


    The strength and astounding simplicity of certain permanent magnet materials allow a wide variety of simple, compact configurations of high field strength and quality multipole magnets. Here we analyze the important class of iron-free permanent magnet systems for charged particle beam optics. The theory of conventional segmented multipole magnets formed from uniformly magnetized block magnets placed in regular arrays about a circular magnet aperture is reviewed. Practical multipole configurations resulting are presented that are capable of high and intermediate aperture field strengths. A new class of elliptical aperture magnets is presented within a model with continuously varying magnetization angle. Segmented versions of these magnets promise practical high field dipole and quadrupole magnets with an increased range of applicability.

  14. Comparison of Di-n-methyl Phthalate Biodegradation by Free and Immobilized Microbial Cells

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    Objective To compare the biodegradation of di-n-methyl pathalate by free and immobilizedmicrobial cells. Methods The enrichment and isolation technique was used to isolate themicroorganism. The PAV-entrapment method was utilized to immobilize the microorganisms. Thescanning electron microscophy (SEM) was used to observe the growth and distribution of microbialcells immobilized inside the PVA bead gels. The GC/MS method was used to identify the mainintermediates of DMP degradation. Results The microbial cells could grow quite well in PVA gel.The metabolic pathway did not change before and after immobilization of the microbial cells. Thedegradation rate of immobilized cells was higher than that of free cells. Conclusion Theimmobilized microbial cells possess advantages than free cells when applied to the biodegradation oftoxic organic pollutants.

  15. Escherichia coli cell-free protein synthesis and isotope labeling of mammalian proteins. (United States)

    Terada, Takaho; Yokoyama, Shigeyuki


    This chapter describes the cell-free protein synthesis method, using an Escherichia coli cell extract. This is a cost-effective method for milligram-scale protein production and is particularly useful for the production of mammalian proteins, protein complexes, and membrane proteins that are difficult to synthesize by recombinant expression methods, using E. coli and eukaryotic cells. By adjusting the conditions of the cell-free method, zinc-binding proteins, disulfide-bonded proteins, ligand-bound proteins, etc., may also be produced. Stable isotope labeling of proteins can be accomplished by the cell-free method, simply by using stable isotope-labeled amino acid(s) in the cell-free reaction. Moreover, the cell-free protein synthesis method facilitates the avoidance of stable isotope scrambling and dilution over the recombinant expression methods and is therefore advantageous for amino acid-selective stable isotope labeling. Site-specific stable isotope labeling is also possible with a tRNA molecule specific to the UAG codon. By the cell-free protein synthesis method, coupled transcription-translation is performed from a plasmid vector or a PCR-amplified DNA fragment encoding the protein. A milligram quantity of protein can be produced with a milliliter-scale reaction solution in the dialysis mode. More than a thousand solution structures have been determined by NMR spectroscopy for uniformly labeled samples of human and mouse functional domain proteins, produced by the cell-free method. Here, we describe the practical aspects of mammalian protein production by the cell-free method for NMR spectroscopy.

  16. Imaging label-free biosensor with microfluidic system (United States)

    Jahns, S.; Glorius, P.; Hansen, M.; Nazirizadeh, Y.; Gerken, M.


    We present a microfluidic system suitable for parallel label-free detection of several biomarkers utilizing a compact imaging measurement system. The microfluidic system contains a filter unit to separate the plasma from human blood and a functionalized, photonic crystal slab sensor chip. The nanostructure of the photonic crystal slab sensor chip is fabricated by nanoimprint lithography of a period grating surface into a photoresist and subsequent deposition of a TiO2 layer. Photonic crystal slabs are slab waveguides supporting quasi-guided modes coupling to far-field radiation, which are sensitive to refractive index changes due to biomarker binding on the functionalized surface. In our imaging read-out system the resulting resonance shift of the quasi-guided mode in the transmission spectrum is converted into an intensity change detectable with a simple camera. By continuously taking photographs of the sensor surface local intensity changes are observed revealing the binding kinetics of the biomarker to its specific target. Data from two distinct measurement fields are used for evaluation. For testing the sensor chip, 1 μM biotin as well as 1 μM recombinant human CD40 ligand were immobilized in spotsvia amin coupling to the sensor surface. Each binding experiment was performed with 250 nM streptavidin and 90 nM CD40 ligand antibody dissolved in phosphate buffered saline. In the next test series, a functionalized sensor chip was bonded onto a 15 mm x 15 mm opening of the 75 mm x 25 mm x 2 mm microfluidic system. We demonstrate the functionality of the microfluidic system for filtering human blood such that only blood plasma was transported to the sensor chip. The results of first binding experiments in buffer with this test chip will be presented.

  17. Alcohol production from whey permeate by immobilized and free cells of Kluyveromyces marxianus NCYC 179

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marwaha, S.S.; Kennedy, J.F.


    Comparative studies on the immobilized and free cells of Kluyveromyces marxianus NCYC 179 and Saccharomyces cerevisiae NCYC 240 were carried out to test their ability to metabolise whey lactose for ethanol production in batch fermentation. Complete utilisation of whey lactose (9.8%) resulting in 42.6 g ethanol/liter by K. marxianus NCYC 179 was observed, when fermentation was carried out under anaerobic conditions at pH 5.5, 30 degrees C temperature and 200 rev/minute. However, S. cerevisiae NCYC 240 proved to be an inefficient culture. Of the two gels, namely sodium alginate and K-carrageenan, monitored for their efficiency in entrapping the cells, sodium alginate at 2% (w/v) concentration was observed to retain a cell load of 120 g dry weight cell/liter effectively for optimum alcohol production. The immobilized K. marxianus NCYC 179 cells were examined in a packed bed reactor system under optimized fermentation conditions from batch fermenation experiments. Ethanol production efficiency was monitored at variable flow rates and the results are discussed. 11 references.

  18. Label-free identification of white blood cell using optical diffraction tomography (Conference Presentation) (United States)

    Yoon, Jonghee; Kim, Kyoohyun; Kim, Min-hyeok; Kang, Suk-Jo; Park, YongKeun


    White blood cells (WBC) have crucial roles in immune systems which defend the host against from disease conditions and harmful invaders. Various WBC subsets have been characterized and reported to be involved in many pathophysiologic conditions. It is crucial to isolate a specific WBC subset to study its pathophysiological roles in diseases. Identification methods for a specific WBC population are rely on invasive approaches, including Wright-Gimesa staining for observing cellular morphologies and fluorescence staining for specific protein markers. While these methods enable precise classification of WBC populations, they could disturb cellular viability or functions. In order to classify WBC populations in a non-invasive manner, we exploited optical diffraction tomography (ODT). ODT is a three-dimensional (3-D) quantitative phase imaging technique that measures 3-D refractive index (RI) distributions of individual WBCs. To test feasibility of label-free classification of WBC populations using ODT, we measured four subtypes of WBCs, including B cell, CD4 T cell, CD8 T cell, and natural killer (NK) cell. From measured 3-D RI tomograms of WBCs, we obtain quantitative structural and biochemical information and classify each WBC population using a machine learning algorithm.

  19. Quantification of cell-free layer thickness and cell distribution of blood by optical coherence tomography (United States)

    Lauri, Janne; Bykov, Alexander; Fabritius, Tapio


    A high-speed optical coherence tomography (OCT) with 1-μm axial resolution was applied to assess the thickness of a cell-free layer (CFL) and a spatial distribution of red blood cells (RBC) next to the microchannel wall. The experiments were performed in vitro in a plain glass microchannel with a width of 2 mm and height of 0.2 mm. RBCs were suspended in phosphate buffered saline solution at the hematocrit level of 45%. Flow rates of 0.1 to 0.5 ml/h were used to compensate gravity induced CFL. The results indicate that OCT can be efficiently used for the quantification of CFL thickness and spatial distribution of RBCs in microcirculatory blood flow.

  20. Antioxidative Effect of Schiff Bases with o-Hydroxybenzylidene Groupon Free Radical Induced Hemolysis of Human Red Blood Cell

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    The hemolysis of human red blood cells was initiated by a water-soluble free radical initiator, 2,2′-azobis-(2-amidinopropane hydrochloride)(AAPH), at 37 ℃ in phosphate buffered saline(pH=7.4). The respective addition of 1-[N-(o-hydroxybenzylidene)amino]tetradecane(TDCA), 1,2-di[N-(o-hydroxybenzylidene)amino]cyclohexane(DACH), 4-[N-(o-hydroxybenzylidene)amino]benzoic acid(PABA), 4-nitro[N-(o-hydroxybenzylidene)]aniline(APNA) or N-(o-hydroxybenzylidene)aniline(APA) can all prolong the inhibition period of hemolysis, indicating that the above Schiff bases play an antioxidative role in free radical induced hemolysis. It can be concluded that Schiff base with an alkyl group or a conjugated system in the molecule protect red blood cells against free radical induced hemolysis efficiently. This information may be useful for antioxidant drug design.

  1. Vector-free and transgene-free human iPS cells differentiate into functional neurons and enhance functional recovery after ischemic stroke in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Osama Mohamad

    Full Text Available Stroke is a leading cause of human death and disability in the adult population in the United States and around the world. While stroke treatment is limited, stem cell transplantation has emerged as a promising regenerative therapy to replace or repair damaged tissues and enhance functional recovery after stroke. Recently, the creation of induced pluripotent stem (iPS cells through reprogramming of somatic cells has revolutionized cell therapy by providing an unlimited source of autologous cells for transplantation. In addition, the creation of vector-free and transgene-free human iPS (hiPS cells provides a new generation of stem cells with a reduced risk of tumor formation that was associated with the random integration of viral vectors seen with previous techniques. However, the potential use of these cells in the treatment of ischemic stroke has not been explored. In the present investigation, we examined the neuronal differentiation of vector-free and transgene-free hiPS cells and the transplantation of hiPS cell-derived neural progenitor cells (hiPS-NPCs in an ischemic stroke model in mice. Vector-free hiPS cells were maintained in feeder-free and serum-free conditions and differentiated into functional neurons in vitro using a newly developed differentiation protocol. Twenty eight days after transplantation in stroke mice, hiPS-NPCs showed mature neuronal markers in vivo. No tumor formation was seen up to 12 months after transplantation. Transplantation of hiPS-NPCs restored neurovascular coupling, increased trophic support and promoted behavioral recovery after stroke. These data suggest that using vector-free and transgene-free hiPS cells in stem cell therapy are safe and efficacious in enhancing recovery after focal ischemic stroke in mice.

  2. Practical, microfabrication-free device for single-cell isolation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liang-I Lin

    Full Text Available Microfabricated devices have great potential in cell-level studies, but are not easily accessible for the broad biology community. This paper introduces the Microscale Oil-Covered Cell Array (MOCCA as a low-cost device for high throughput single-cell analysis that can be easily produced by researchers without microengineering knowledge. Instead of using microfabricated structures to capture cells, MOCCA isolates cells in discrete aqueous droplets that are separated by oil on patterned hydrophilic areas across a relatively more hydrophobic substrate. The number of randomly seeded Escherichia coli bacteria in each discrete droplet approaches single-cell levels. The cell distribution on MOCCA is well-fit with Poisson distribution. In this pioneer study, we created an array of 900-picoliter droplets. The total time needed to seed cells in approximately 3000 droplets was less than 10 minutes. Compared to traditional microfabrication techniques, MOCCA dramatically lowers the cost of microscale cell arrays, yet enhances the fabrication and operational efficiency for single-cell analysis.

  3. Cell-Free Expression of Protein Kinase A for Rapid Activity Assays

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Donna M. Leippe


    Full Text Available Functional protein analysis often calls for lengthy, laborious in vivo protein expression and purification, and can be complicated by the lack of stability of the purified protein. In this study, we demonstrate the feasibility of a simplified procedure for functional protein analysis on magnetic particles using cell-free protein synthesis of the catalytic subunit of human cAMP-dependent protein kinase as a HaloTag® fusion protein. The cell-free protein synthesis systems provide quick access to the protein of interest, while the HaloTag technology provides efficient, covalent protein immobilization of the fusion protein, eliminating the need for further protein purification and minimizing storage-related stability issues. The immobilized cPKA fusion protein is assayed directly on magnetic beads and can be used in inhibitor analyses. The combination of rapid protein synthesis and capture technologies can greatly facilitate the process of protein expression and activity screening, and therefore, can become a valuable tool for functional proteomics studies.

  4. Serum-free culture conditions for serial subculture of undifferentiated PC12 cells. (United States)

    Ohnuma, Kiyoshi; Hayashi, Yohei; Furue, Miho; Kaneko, Kunihiko; Asashima, Makoto


    PC12 cells, a widely used model neuronal cell line, are usually cultured in serum-supplemented medium. This report describes a serum-free medium for the culture of PC12 cells. PC12 cells grown in the two media types had similar growth rates and released dopamine in response to high potassium-induced calcium elevation. However, the levels of dopamine and of dopamine release in cells cultured in the serum-free medium were less than 10% of that in cells cultured in serum-supplemented medium. Dopamine levels recovered within 10 days if cells were returned to serum-supplemented medium, but dopamine release could not be recovered. Nerve growth factor (NGF) induced similar responses in PC12 cells cultured in both media, including phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated protein kinases and neurite extension. Transferrin was necessary for survival of neurite-bearing PC12 cells subcultured in serum-free medium and insulin promoted the cells proliferation. Ten days culture with NGF produced a similar increase in neurofilament expression and acetylcholinesterase activity in both media. These results suggest that PC12 in the hormonally defined serum-free media are qualitatively the same as those cultured in serum-supplemented media, and therefore this new culture protocol should enable more precise studies of PC12 cells culture in the absence of confounding unknown factors.

  5. Influence of free fatty acids on glucose uptake in prostate cancer cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Kim Francis; Divilov, Vadim; Sevak, Kuntalkumar


    The study focuses on the interaction between glucose and free fatty acids (FFA) in malignant human prostate cancer cell lines by an in vitro observation of uptake of fluoro-2-deoxy-d-glucose (FDG) and acetate.......The study focuses on the interaction between glucose and free fatty acids (FFA) in malignant human prostate cancer cell lines by an in vitro observation of uptake of fluoro-2-deoxy-d-glucose (FDG) and acetate....

  6. Virus-Free Human Placental Cell Lines To Study Genetic Functions | NCI Technology Transfer Center | TTC (United States)

    The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development's Section on Cellular Differentiation is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in collaborative research to further develop, evaluate, or commercialize immortalized virus-free human placental cell lines.The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development's Section on Cellular Differentiation is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in collaborative research to further develop, evaluate, or commercialize immortalized virus-free human placental cell lines.

  7. Berry Phase Physics in Free and Interacting Fermionic Systems

    CERN Document Server

    Chen, Jing-Yuan


    Berry phase plays an important role in many non-trivial phenomena over a broad range of many-body systems. In this thesis we focus on the Berry phase due to the change of the particles' momenta, and study its effects in free and interacting fermionic systems. We start with reviewing the semi-classical kinetic theory with Berry phase for a non-interacting ensemble of fermions -- a Berry Fermi gas -- which might be far-from-equilibrium. We particularly review the famous Berry phase contribution to the anomalous Hall current. We then provide a concrete and general path integral derivation for the semi-classical theory. Then we turn to the specific example of Weyl fermion, which exhibits the profound quantum phenomenon of chiral anomaly; we review how this quantum effect, and its closely related chiral magnetic effect and chiral vortical effect, arise from Berry phase in the semi-classical kinetic theory. We also discuss how Lorentz symmetry in the kinetic theory of Weyl fermion, seemly violated by the Berry phas...

  8. Circulating Tumor Cell and Cell-free Circulating Tumor DNA in Lung Cancer. (United States)

    Nurwidya, Fariz; Zaini, Jamal; Putra, Andika Chandra; Andarini, Sita; Hudoyo, Achmad; Syahruddin, Elisna; Yunus, Faisal


    Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) are tumor cells that are separated from the primary site or metastatic lesion and disseminate in blood circulation. CTCs are considered to be part of the long process of cancer metastasis. As a 'liquid biopsy', CTC molecular examination and investigation of single cancer cells create an important opportunity for providing an understanding of cancer biology and the process of metastasis. In the last decade, we have seen dramatic development in defining the role of CTCs in lung cancer in terms of diagnosis, genomic alteration determination, treatment response and, finally, prognosis prediction. The aims of this review are to understand the basic biology and to review methods of detection of CTCs that apply to the various types of solid tumor. Furthermore, we explored clinical applications, including treatment monitoring to anticipate therapy resistance as well as biomarker analysis, in the context of lung cancer. We also explored the potential use of cell-free circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) in the genomic alteration analysis of lung cancer.

  9. Robotic milking and milk quality: effects on bacterial counts, somatic cell counts, freezing point and free fatty acids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yvonne van der Vorst


    Full Text Available Changes in milk quality after the introduction of automatic milking systems (AM-systems on dairy farms in TheNetherlands, Germany and Denmark were examined and the data were compared with milk quality results of farms withconventional milking technology. After introduction, a small, but significant increase in total bacterial count, somatic cellcount, freezing point and free fatty acids was observed. The highest levels for total plate count and cell count are foundin the first six months after introduction. After this period the milk quality slightly improves to a more stable level.Risk factors related with milk quality concern general farm characteristics, animal health, AM-system, cleaning and cooling,housing, management skills of the farmer and the hygiene on the farm. Total plate count was significantly relatedto milk yield of the herd, cleaning of the area around the AM-system and the overall hygiene on the farm. Bulk milksomatic cell count appeared to be significantly related to milk yield of the herd and the number of milkings before replacementof the liners. An increased milking frequency is not the only explanation of increased free fatty acid levels. Technicalfactors related to free fatty acids mainly concerned the air inlet in the teat cups, bubbling (excessive air inlet and a toolong post run time of the milk pump. However, several questions regarding the causes of increased free fatty acid levelsremained unclear.

  10. Serum-Free Cryopreservation of Human Amniotic Epithelial Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Niknejad


    Full Text Available Introduction & Objective: One of the important issues in long term storage of cells is removal of animal serum from cell culture environments. The aim of this study was to evaluate amni-otic fluid (AF, which is full of growth factors, as substitute for fetal bovine serum (FBS in the cryopreservation protocol. Materials & Methods: In this experimental study human amniotic epithelial cells were isolated from placentas which were seronegative for microbial infections. The cells were preserved in 24 different patterns for 12 months in -196 ?C (liquid nitrogen and viability of cells were determined before and after cryopreservation by trypan blue and MTT assay. Moreover, Oct-4 expression was studied to determine pluripotency before and after cryopreservation with immunocytochemistry. Results were compared between groups with ANOVA (Tukey Post-Test. P.value under 0.01 and 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: The presence of DMEM, FBS or AF is necessary for amniotic cell cryopreservation. Trypan-blue, MTT and immunocytochemistry showed that there isn’t significant difference between using AF and FBS in viability and pluripotency of cells. Moreover, results showed that DMSO is a better cryoprotectant compared to glycerol. Conclusion : Results showed that amniotic fluid can be a proper substitute for FBS in amniotic epithelial cells cryopreservation. (Sci J Hamadan Univ Med Sci 2013; 20 (1:15-24

  11. Recent progress of dopant-free organic hole-transporting materials in perovskite solar cells (United States)

    Dongxue, Liu; Liu, Yongsheng


    Organic–inorganic hybrid perovskite solar cells have undergone especially intense research and transformation over the past seven years due to their enormous progress in conversion efficiencies. In this perspective, we review the latest developments of conventional perovskite solar cells with a main focus on dopant-free organic hole transporting materials (HTMs). Regarding the rapid progress of perovskite solar cells, stability of devices using dopant-free HTMs are also discussed to help readers understand the challenges and opportunities in high performance and stable perovskite solar cells. Project supported by the Scientific Research Starting Foundation for Overseas Introduced Talents of College of Chemistry, Nankai University.

  12. Effect of feeding whole compared with cell-free colostrum on calf immune status: Vaccination response. (United States)

    Langel, S N; Wark, W A; Garst, S N; James, R E; McGilliard, M L; Petersson-Wolfe, C S; Kanevsky-Mullarky, I


    Vaccination contributes to improved herd health and production. Boosting immune development at a young age may have long-term effects by enhancing vaccine immune response and efficacy. In the bovine, colostrum is the sole source of maternal immunity, having a substantial effect on health status in the neonate. To date, colostral antibody concentration is used to evaluate colostrum quality. However, colostrum also contains proteins and cells, which may affect immune development and future responses to vaccines. To determine the effect of maternal colostral cells on immune development, 37 female Holstein and Jersey dairy calves were bottle-fed 4 quarts total of whole colostrum (WC) or cell-free colostrum (CFC) at birth. Calves were vaccinated with 2 series of multivalent vaccines. Series A consisted of vaccines given between 1 and 4mo of life. Series B consisted of vaccines given between 5 and 10mo of life. Calf peripheral blood samples were obtained before each vaccination series and monthly for 3mo after each vaccination series. Cellular blood parameters were determined by flow cytometry. Quantitative real-time PCR was used to determine cytokine gene expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells before vaccination series B and once a month for 2mo after vaccination series B. Calves fed CFC had fewer numbers of B cells in mo 2 after vaccination series A when compared with WC-fed calves. Calves fed CFC had decreased gene expression levels of IL-2 in mo 1 and numbers of CD4(+)CD62L(+)CD45RO(-) and CD4(+)CD62L(+)CD45RO(+) T cells in mo 0 and 1 after vaccination series B as compared with WC-fed calves. Our findings indicate a greater response to vaccines up to 6 to 10mo post-WC feeding when compared with CFC. These data suggest that adoptive transfer of maternal colostral cells at birth has a long-term effect on development of the neonatal immune system.

  13. Serum-free microcarrier based production of replication deficient Influenza vaccine candidate virus lacking NS1 using Vero cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan Mylene L


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Influenza virus is a major health concern that has huge impacts on the human society, and vaccination remains as one of the most effective ways to mitigate this disease. Comparing the two types of commercially available Influenza vaccine, the live attenuated virus vaccine is more cross-reactive and easier to administer than the traditional inactivated vaccines. One promising live attenuated Influenza vaccine that has completed Phase I clinical trial is deltaFLU, a deletion mutant lacking the viral Nonstructural Protein 1 (NS1 gene. As a consequence of this gene deletion, this mutant virus can only propagate effectively in cells with a deficient interferon-mediated antiviral response. To demonstrate the manufacturability of this vaccine candidate, a batch bioreactor production process using adherent Vero cells on microcarriers in commercially available animal-component free, serum-free media is described. Results Five commercially available animal-component free, serum-free media (SFM were evaluated for growth of Vero cells in agitated Cytodex 1 spinner flask microcarrier cultures. EX-CELL Vero SFM achieved the highest cell concentration of 2.6 × 10^6 cells/ml, whereas other SFM achieved about 1.2 × 10^6 cells/ml. Time points for infection between the late exponential and stationary phases of cell growth had no significant effect in the final virus titres. A virus yield of 7.6 Log10 TCID50/ml was achieved using trypsin concentration of 10 μg/ml and MOI of 0.001. The Influenza vaccine production process was scaled up to a 3 liter controlled stirred tank bioreactor to achieve a cell density of 2.7 × 10^6 cells/ml and virus titre of 8.3 Log10 TCID50/ml. Finally, the bioreactor system was tested for the production of the corresponding wild type H1N1 Influenza virus, which is conventionally used in the production of inactivated vaccine. High virus titres of up to 10 Log10 TCID50/ml were achieved. Conclusions We describe for the

  14. A CRISPR/Cas-Mediated Selection-free Knockin Strategy in Human Embryonic Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zengrong Zhu


    Full Text Available The development of new gene-editing tools, in particular the CRISPR/Cas system, has greatly facilitated site-specific mutagenesis in human embryonic stem cells (hESCs, including the introduction or correction of patient-specific mutations for disease modeling. However, integration of a reporter gene into an endogenous locus in hESCs still requires a lengthy and laborious two-step strategy that involves first drug selection to identify correctly targeted clones and then excision of the drug-resistance cassette. Through the use of iCRISPR, an efficient gene-editing platform we recently developed, this study demonstrates a knockin strategy without drug selection for both active and silent genes in hESCs. Lineage-specific hESC reporter lines are useful for real-time monitoring of cell-fate decisions and lineage tracing, as well as enrichment of specific cell populations during hESC differentiation. Thus, this selection-free knockin strategy is expected to greatly facilitate the use of hESCs for developmental studies, disease modeling, and cell-replacement therapy.

  15. Cooling systems of the resting area in free stall dairy barn (United States)

    Calegari, F.; Calamari, L.; Frazzi, E.


    A study during the summer season evaluated the effect of different cooling systems on behavioral and productive responses of Italian Friesian dairy cows kept in an experimental-free stall barn located in the Po Valley in Italy. The study involved 30 lactating dairy cows subdivided into two groups kept in two pens with external hard court paddock in each free stall. The same cooling system was applied in the feeding area in both pens. A different cooling system in the resting area was applied to the two pens: in the pen SW, the resting area was equipped with fans and misters; in the other, there was simple ventilation (SV). Breathing rate, rectal temperature, milk yield, and milk characteristics (fat, protein, and somatic cell count) were measured. Behavioral activities (standing and lying cows in the different areas, as well as the animals in the feed bunk) were recorded. Mild to moderate heat waves during the trial were observed. On average, the breathing rate was numerically greater in SV compared with SW cows (60.2 and 55.8 breath/min, respectively), and mean rectal temperature remained below 39 °C in both groups during the trial (on average 38.7 and 38.8 °C in SV and SW, respectively. During the hotter periods of the trial, the time spent lying indoor in the free stall was greater in SW (11.8 h/day) than SV (10.7 h/day). Conversely, the time spent standing indoor without feeding was greater in SV (4.3 h/day) than SW (3.8 h/day). Milk yield was slightly better maintained during hotter period in SW compared with SV and somatic cell count was also slightly greater in the former. In conclusion, the adoption of the cooling system by means of evaporative cooling also in the resting area reduces the alteration of time budget caused by heat stress.

  16. Cooling systems of the resting area in free stall dairy barn. (United States)

    Calegari, F; Calamari, L; Frazzi, E


    A study during the summer season evaluated the effect of different cooling systems on behavioral and productive responses of Italian Friesian dairy cows kept in an experimental-free stall barn located in the Po Valley in Italy. The study involved 30 lactating dairy cows subdivided into two groups kept in two pens with external hard court paddock in each free stall. The same cooling system was applied in the feeding area in both pens. A different cooling system in the resting area was applied to the two pens: in the pen SW, the resting area was equipped with fans and misters; in the other, there was simple ventilation (SV). Breathing rate, rectal temperature, milk yield, and milk characteristics (fat, protein, and somatic cell count) were measured. Behavioral activities (standing and lying cows in the different areas, as well as the animals in the feed bunk) were recorded. Mild to moderate heat waves during the trial were observed. On average, the breathing rate was numerically greater in SV compared with SW cows (60.2 and 55.8 breath/min, respectively), and mean rectal temperature remained below 39 °C in both groups during the trial (on average 38.7 and 38.8 °C in SV and SW, respectively. During the hotter periods of the trial, the time spent lying indoor in the free stall was greater in SW (11.8 h/day) than SV (10.7 h/day). Conversely, the time spent standing indoor without feeding was greater in SV (4.3 h/day) than SW (3.8 h/day). Milk yield was slightly better maintained during hotter period in SW compared with SV and somatic cell count was also slightly greater in the former. In conclusion, the adoption of the cooling system by means of evaporative cooling also in the resting area reduces the alteration of time budget caused by heat stress.

  17. The identification of 5'-fluoro-5-deoxyinosine as a shunt product in cell free extracts of Streptomyces cattleya. (United States)

    Cobb, Steven L; Deng, Hai; Hamilton, John T G; McGlinchey, Ryan P; O'Hagan, David; Schaffrath, Christoph


    5'-Fluoro-5'-deoxyinosine (5'-FDI) is identified as an adventitious side product that accumulates in cell free incubations of SAM and fluoride ion in Streptomyces cattleya. 5'-FDI was identified by a combination of isotopic labelling studies and co-synthesis studies as well as enzymatic degradation. Although it is an efficiently generated end product of the cell free incubations, 5'-FDI is not a biosynthetic intermediate and it does not accumulate as a fluorometabolite with fluoroacetate and 4-fluorothreonine in whole cell incubations of S. cattleya. Clearly the purine deaminase which converts 5'-fluoro-5'-deoxyadenosine (5'-FDA) to 5'-FDI in the cell free extract does not come into contact with 5'-FDA in whole cells, suggesting some level of compartmentalisation in cells of S. cattleya. The biotransformation of 5'-FDI from fluoride ion extends the range of organofluorine products, beyond biosynthetic intermediates, that can be generated by this system, for applications such as enzymatic labelling with fluorine-18 for positron emission tomography applications.

  18. Analyzing free zinc(II) ion concentrations in cell biology with fluorescent chelating molecules. (United States)

    Maret, Wolfgang


    Essential metal ions are tightly controlled in biological systems. An understanding of metal metabolism and homeostasis is being developed from quantitative information of the sizes, concentrations, and dynamics of cellular and subcellular metal ion pools. In the case of human zinc metabolism, minimally 24 proteins of two zinc transporter families and a dozen metallothioneins participate in cellular uptake, extrusion, and re-distribution among cellular compartments. Significantly, zinc(ii) ions are now considered signaling ions in intra- and intercellular communication. Such functions require transients of free zinc ions. It is experimentally quite challenging to distinguish zinc that is protein-bound from zinc that is not bound to proteins. Measurement of total zinc is relatively straightforward with analytical techniques such as atomic absorption/emission spectroscopy or inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Total zinc concentrations of human cells are 200-300 μM. In contrast, the pool of non-protein bound zinc is mostly examined with fluorescence microscopy/spectroscopy. There are two widely applied fluorescence approaches, one employing low molecular weight chelating agents ("probes") and the other metal-binding proteins ("sensors"). The protein sensors, such as the CALWY, Zap/ZifCY, and carbonic anhydrase-based sensors, can be genetically encoded and have certain advantages in terms of controlling intracellular concentration, localization, and calibration. When employed correctly, both probes and sensors can establish qualitative differences in free zinc ion concentrations. However, when quantitative information is sought, the assumptions underlying the applications of probes and sensors must be carefully examined and even then measured pools of free zinc ions remain methodologically defined. A consensus is building that the steady-state free zinc ion concentrations in the cytosol are in the picomolar range but there is no consensus on their

  19. Efficient passage of human pluripotent stem cells on spider silk matrices under xeno-free conditions. (United States)

    Wu, Siqin; Johansson, Jan; Hovatta, Outi; Rising, Anna


    Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) hold great promise for applications in regenerative medicine and pharmaceutical development. Such applications require cell culture methods and reagents that are chemically defined, xeno-free, scalable, and low-cost. Herein, we describe non-mechanical passaging of hPSCs on spider silk films under chemically defined and xeno-free conditions. The cells were dissociated into single cells or small aggregates using Accutase or enzyme-free dissociation buffer and then passaged to spider silk films, where they expanded in monolayers until they covered the surface. Cells cultured over 10 passages on spider silk film remained karyotypically normal and pluripotent. In conclusion, a novel method for passaging dissociated hPSCs under conditions that are compatible with clinical applications is presented. The method is cost-efficient and may be useful for both research and clinical applications.

  20. Fuel cell system with interconnect

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Zhien; Goettler, Richard; Delaforce, Philip Mark


    The present invention includes a fuel cell system having an interconnect that reduces or eliminates diffusion (leakage) of fuel and oxidant by providing an increased densification, by forming the interconnect as a ceramic/metal composite.

  1. Direct Reprogramming of Human Bone Marrow Stromal Cells into Functional Renal Cells Using Cell-free Extracts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evangelia Papadimou


    Full Text Available The application of cell-based therapies in regenerative medicine is gaining recognition. Here, we show that human bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs, also known as bone-marrow-derived mesenchymal cells, can be reprogrammed into renal proximal tubular-like epithelial cells using cell-free extracts. Streptolysin-O-permeabilized BMSCs exposed to HK2-cell extracts underwent morphological changes—formation of “domes” and tubule-like structures—and acquired epithelial functional properties such as transepithelial-resistance, albumin-binding, and uptake and specific markers E-cadherin and aquaporin-1. Transmission electron microscopy revealed the presence of brush border microvilli and tight intercellular contacts. RNA sequencing showed tubular epithelial transcript abundance and revealed the upregulation of components of the EGFR pathway. Reprogrammed BMSCs integrated into self-forming kidney tissue and formed tubular structures. Reprogrammed BMSCs infused in immunodeficient mice with cisplatin-induced acute kidney injury engrafted into proximal tubuli, reduced renal injury and improved function. Thus, reprogrammed BMSCs are a promising cell resource for future cell therapy.

  2. Direct Reprogramming of Human Bone Marrow Stromal Cells into Functional Renal Cells Using Cell-free Extracts (United States)

    Papadimou, Evangelia; Morigi, Marina; Iatropoulos, Paraskevas; Xinaris, Christodoulos; Tomasoni, Susanna; Benedetti, Valentina; Longaretti, Lorena; Rota, Cinzia; Todeschini, Marta; Rizzo, Paola; Introna, Martino; Grazia de Simoni, Maria; Remuzzi, Giuseppe; Goligorsky, Michael S.; Benigni, Ariela


    Summary The application of cell-based therapies in regenerative medicine is gaining recognition. Here, we show that human bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs), also known as bone-marrow-derived mesenchymal cells, can be reprogrammed into renal proximal tubular-like epithelial cells using cell-free extracts. Streptolysin-O-permeabilized BMSCs exposed to HK2-cell extracts underwent morphological changes—formation of “domes” and tubule-like structures—and acquired epithelial functional properties such as transepithelial-resistance, albumin-binding, and uptake and specific markers E-cadherin and aquaporin-1. Transmission electron microscopy revealed the presence of brush border microvilli and tight intercellular contacts. RNA sequencing showed tubular epithelial transcript abundance and revealed the upregulation of components of the EGFR pathway. Reprogrammed BMSCs integrated into self-forming kidney tissue and formed tubular structures. Reprogrammed BMSCs infused in immunodeficient mice with cisplatin-induced acute kidney injury engrafted into proximal tubuli, reduced renal injury and improved function. Thus, reprogrammed BMSCs are a promising cell resource for future cell therapy. PMID:25754206

  3. Revealing the Differences Between Free and Complexed Enzyme Mechanisms and Factors Contributing to Cell Wall Recalcitrance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Resch, M.


    Enzymatic depolymerization of polysaccharides is a key step in the production of fuels and chemicals from lignocellulosic biomass, and discovery of synergistic biomass-degrading enzyme paradigms will enable improved conversion processes. Historically, revealing insights into enzymatic saccharification mechanisms on plant cell walls has been hindered by uncharacterized substrates and low resolution imaging techniques. Also, translating findings between model substrates to intact biomass is critical for evaluating enzyme performance. Here we employ a fungal free enzyme cocktail, a complexed cellulosomal system, and a combination of the two to investigate saccharification mechanisms on cellulose I, II and III along with corn stover from Clean Fractionation (CF), which is an Organosolv pretreatment. The insoluble Cellulose Enriched Fraction (CEF) from CF contains mainly cellulose with minor amounts of residual hemicellulose and lignin, the amount of which depends on the CF pretreatment severity. Enzymatic digestions at both low and high-solids loadings demonstrate that CF reduces the amount of enzyme required to depolymerize polysaccharides relative to deacetylated, dilute acid pretreated corn stover. Transmission and scanning electron microscopy of the biomass provides evidence for the different mechanisms of enzymatic deconstruction between free and complexed enzyme systems, and reveals the basis for the synergistic relationship between the two enzyme paradigms on a process-relevant substrate for the first time. These results also demonstrate that the presence of lignin, rather than cellulose morphology, is more detrimental to cellulosome action than to free cellulases. As enzyme costs are a major economic driver for biorefineries, this study provides key inputs for the evaluation of CF as a pretreatment method for biomass conversion.

  4. Cell-free synthesis of functional human epidermal growth factor receptor: Investigation of ligand-independent dimerization in Sf21 microsomal membranes using non-canonical amino acids (United States)

    Quast, Robert B.; Ballion, Biljana; Stech, Marlitt; Sonnabend, Andrei; Varga, Balázs R.; Wüstenhagen, Doreen A.; Kele, Péter; Schiller, Stefan M.; Kubick, Stefan


    Cell-free protein synthesis systems represent versatile tools for the synthesis and modification of human membrane proteins. In particular, eukaryotic cell-free systems provide a promising platform for their structural and functional characterization. Here, we present the cell-free synthesis of functional human epidermal growth factor receptor and its vIII deletion mutant in a microsome-containing system derived from cultured Sf21 cells. We provide evidence for embedment of cell-free synthesized receptors into microsomal membranes and asparagine-linked glycosylation. Using the cricket paralysis virus internal ribosome entry site and a repetitive synthesis approach enrichment of receptors inside the microsomal fractions was facilitated thereby providing analytical amounts of functional protein. Receptor tyrosine kinase activation was demonstrated by monitoring receptor phosphorylation. Furthermore, an orthogonal cell-free translation system that provides the site-directed incorporation of p-azido-L-phenylalanine is characterized and applied to investigate receptor dimerization in the absence of a ligand by photo-affinity cross-linking. Finally, incorporated azides are used to generate stable covalently linked receptor dimers by strain-promoted cycloaddition using a novel linker system. PMID:27670253

  5. Control of free-flying space robot manipulator systems (United States)

    Cannon, Robert H., Jr.


    New control techniques for self contained, autonomous free flying space robots were developed and tested experimentally. Free flying robots are envisioned as a key element of any successful long term presence in space. These robots must be capable of performing the assembly, maintenance, and inspection, and repair tasks that currently require human extravehicular activity (EVA). A set of research projects were developed and carried out using lab models of satellite robots and a flexible manipulator. The second generation space robot models use air cushion vehicle (ACV) technology to simulate in 2-D the drag free, zero g conditions of space. The current work is divided into 5 major projects: Global Navigation and Control of a Free Floating Robot, Cooperative Manipulation from a Free Flying Robot, Multiple Robot Cooperation, Thrusterless Robotic Locomotion, and Dynamic Payload Manipulation. These projects are examined in detail.

  6. White blood cell counting system (United States)


    The design, fabrication, and tests of a prototype white blood cell counting system for use in the Skylab IMSS are presented. The counting system consists of a sample collection subsystem, sample dilution and fluid containment subsystem, and a cell counter. Preliminary test results show the sample collection and the dilution subsystems are functional and fulfill design goals. Results for the fluid containment subsystem show the handling bags cause counting errors due to: (1) adsorption of cells to the walls of the container, and (2) inadequate cleaning of the plastic bag material before fabrication. It was recommended that another bag material be selected.

  7. Skin biopsies for cell cultures from Mediterranean free-ranging cetaceans. (United States)

    Marsili, L; Fossi, M C; Neri, G; Casini, S; Gardi, C; Palmeri, S; Tarquini, E; Panigada, S


    The aim of this study was to develop a useful method for obtaining viable tissue samples for establishing cell cultures from skin biopsies of free-ranging cetaceans. The skin biopsies were performed by two methods: dart from an air gun and dart from a crossbow. The dart tip was modified to collect tissue. The tissue was kept in tissue culture medium at ambient temperature, then processed within 24 h. Many modifications in culture technique, with respect to conventional culture methods for human fibroblasts, were made. The cultures thus obtained can be used for many purposes, including genetic and toxicological studies. In toxicology they are an alternative in vitro system for studying threatened animals such as marine mammals. In particular, fibroblasts can be used to test the vulnerability of cetaceans and pinnipeds to different environmental contaminants such as organochlorine compounds, heavy metals and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.

  8. Cell-free DNA for diagnosing myocardial infarction: not ready for prime time. (United States)

    Lippi, Giuseppe; Sanchis-Gomar, Fabian; Cervellin, Gianfranco


    A modest amount of cell-free DNA is constantly present in human blood, originating from programmed cell death, apoptosis and rupture of blood cells or pathogens. Acute or chronic cell injury contributes to enhance the pool of circulating nucleic acids, so that their assessment may be regarded as an appealing perspective for diagnosing myocardial ischemia. We performed a search in Medline, Web of Science and Scopus to identify clinical studies that investigated the concentration of cell-free DNA in patients with myocardial ischemia. Overall, eight case-control studies could be detected and reviewed. Although the concentration of cell-free DNA was found to be higher in the diseased than in the healthy population, the scenario was inconclusive due to the fact that the overall number of subjects studied was modest, the populations were unclearly defined, cases and controls were not adequately matched, the methodology for measuring the reference cardiac biomarkers was inadequately described, and the diagnostic performance of cell-free DNA was not benchmarked against highly sensitive troponin immunoassays. Several biological and technical hurdles were also identified in cell-free DNA testing, including the lack of specificity and unsuitable kinetics for early diagnosis of myocardial ischemia, the long turnaround time and low throughput, the need for specialized instrumentation and dedicated personnel, the lack of standardization or harmonization of analytical techniques, the incremental costs and the high vulnerability to preanalytical variables. Hence it seems reasonable to conclude that the analysis of cell-free DNA is not ready for prime time in diagnostics of myocardial ischemia.

  9. Failure analysis in ITO-free all-solution processed organic solar cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Galagan, Y.; Eggenhuisen, T.M.; Coenen, M.J.J.; Biezemans, A.F.K.V.; Verhees, W.J.H.; Veenstra, S.C.; Groen, W.A.; Andriessen, R.; Janssen, R.A.J.


    In this paper we discuss a problem-solving methodology and present guidance for troubleshooting defects in ITO-free all-solution processed organic solar cells with an inverted cell architecture. A systematic approach for identifying the main causes of failures in devices is presented. Comprehensive

  10. Physical characterization of hematopoietic stem cells using multidirectional label-free light scatterings. (United States)

    Shahin, Hesam; Gupta, Manisha; Janowska-Wieczorek, Anna; Rozmus, Wojciech; Tsui, Ying Y


    An experimental setup capable of measuring simultaneous 2D scattered light angular distribution from two directions to study cell morphology without the use of bio-labels was developed. Experiments with hematopoietic stem cells (CD34+ cells) show good agreement with detailed numerical simulations of light scattering. Numerical simulations and computer models of cells are used to identify physical features of cells with the largest scattering cross sections. This allows for determination of size, geometry of the nucleus and distribution of mitochondria in hematopoietic stem cells by means of our label-free method.

  11. Serum-Free Cryopreservation of Five Mammalian Cell Lines in Either a Pelleted or Suspended State

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corsini Joe


    Full Text Available Herein we have explored two practical aspects of cryopreserving cultured mammalian cells during routine laboratory maintenance. First, we have examined the possibility of using a serum-free, hence more affordable, cryopreservative. Using five mammalian lines (Crandell Feline Kidney, MCF7, A72, WI 38 and NB324K, we found that the serum-free alternative preserves nearly as efficiently as the serum-containing preservatives. Second, we compared cryostorage of those cells in suspended versus a pellet form using both aforementioned cryopreservatives. Under our conditions, cells were in general recovered equally well in a suspended versus a pellet form.

  12. 21 CFR 866.5380 - Free secretory component immuno-logical test system. (United States)


    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Free secretory component immuno-logical test system. 866.5380 Section 866.5380 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND... Systems § 866.5380 Free secretory component immuno-logical test system. (a) Identification. A...

  13. Textile cell-free scaffolds for in situ tissue engineering applications. (United States)

    Aibibu, Dilbar; Hild, Martin; Wöltje, Michael; Cherif, Chokri


    In this article, the benefits offered by micro-fibrous scaffold architectures fabricated by textile manufacturing techniques are discussed: How can established and novel fiber-processing techniques be exploited in order to generate templates matching the demands of the target cell niche? The problems related to the development of biomaterial fibers (especially from nature-derived materials) ready for textile manufacturing are addressed. Attention is also paid on how biological cues may be incorporated into micro-fibrous scaffold architectures by hybrid manufacturing approaches (e.g. nanofiber or hydrogel functionalization). After a critical review of exemplary recent research works on cell-free fiber based scaffolds for in situ TE, including clinical studies, we conclude that in order to make use of the whole range of favors which may be provided by engineered fibrous scaffold systems, there are four main issues which need to be addressed: (1) Logical combination of manufacturing techniques and materials. (2) Biomaterial fiber development. (3) Adaption of textile manufacturing techniques to the demands of scaffolds for regenerative medicine. (4) Incorporation of biological cues (e.g. stem cell homing factors).

  14. Detection of Infertility-related Neutralizing Antibodies with a Cell-free Microfluidic Method (United States)

    Eyer, Klaus; Root, Katharina; Verboket, Pascal E.; Dittrich, Petra S.


    The unwanted emergence of neutralizing antibodies (nAbs) against an endogenous or a therapeutic protein can result in deficiency diseases or therapy failure. Here, we developed a cell-free microfluidic method for the sensitive detection and quantification of nAbs in human serum that are associated with infertility. We used cell-derived vesicles containing the luteinizing hormone (LH)/choriogonadotropin receptor (LHHCGR) to detect nAbs against LH. The method exploits the entire cellular signal amplification mechanism, and facilitates the detection of as little as 0.44 nM of LH-nAb (Kd 1.5 nM) in human serum matrix within only 15 minutes. In addition, dose-response curves can be generated in less than 2 hours to evaluate the nAB concentration and dissociation constant. The developed system is devoid of problems associated with cell-based assays and we believe that this simple effect-directed analysis can be used in clinical environments, and is adaptable to other hormones or cytokines and their respective nAbs.

  15. Somatic cell reprogramming-free generation of genetically modified pigs (United States)

    Tanihara, Fuminori; Takemoto, Tatsuya; Kitagawa, Eri; Rao, Shengbin; Do, Lanh Thi Kim; Onishi, Akira; Yamashita, Yukiko; Kosugi, Chisato; Suzuki, Hitomi; Sembon, Shoichiro; Suzuki, Shunichi; Nakai, Michiko; Hashimoto, Masakazu; Yasue, Akihiro; Matsuhisa, Munehide; Noji, Sumihare; Fujimura, Tatsuya; Fuchimoto, Dai-ichiro; Otoi, Takeshige


    Genetically modified pigs for biomedical applications have been mainly generated using the somatic cell nuclear transfer technique; however, this approach requires complex micromanipulation techniques and sometimes increases the risks of both prenatal and postnatal death by faulty epigenetic reprogramming of a donor somatic cell nucleus. As a result, the production of genetically modified pigs has not been widely applied. We provide a simple method for CRISPR (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats)/Cas9 gene editing in pigs that involves the introduction of Cas9 protein and single-guide RNA into in vitro fertilized zygotes by electroporation. The use of gene editing by electroporation of Cas9 protein (GEEP) resulted in highly efficient targeted gene disruption and was validated by the efficient production of Myostatin mutant pigs. Because GEEP does not require the complex methods associated with micromanipulation for somatic reprogramming, it has the potential for facilitating the genetic modification of pigs. PMID:27652340

  16. Hydrogen production using single-chamber membrane-free microbial electrolysis cells. (United States)

    Hu, Hongqiang; Fan, Yanzhen; Liu, Hong


    Microbial electrohydrogenesis provides a new approach for hydrogen generation from renewable biomass. Membranes were used in all the reported microbial electrolysis cells (MECs) to separate the anode and cathode chambers. To reduce the potential losses associated with membrane and increase the energy recovery of this process, single-chamber membrane-free MECs were designed and used to investigate hydrogen production by one mixed culture and one pure culture: Shewanella oneidensis MR-1. At an applied voltage of 0.6 V, this system with a mixed culture achieved a hydrogen production rate of 0.53 m(3)/day/m(3) (0.11 m(3)/day/m(2)) with a current density of 9.3A/m(2) at pH 7 and 0.69 m(3)/day/m(3) (0.15m(3)/day/m(2)) with a current density of 14 A/m(2) at pH 5.8. Stable hydrogen production from lactic acid by S. oneidensis was also observed. Methane was detected during the hydrogen production process with the mixed culture and negatively affected hydrogen production rate. However, by employing suitable approaches, such as exposure of cathodes to air, the hydrogenotrophic methanogens can be suppressed. The current density and volumetric hydrogen production rate of this system have potential to increase significantly by further reducing the electrode spacing and increasing the ratio of electrode surface area/cell volume.

  17. HoloMonitor M4: holographic imaging cytometer for real-time kinetic label-free live-cell analysis of adherent cells (United States)

    Sebesta, Mikael; Egelberg, Peter J.; Langberg, Anders; Lindskov, Jens-Henrik; Alm, Kersti; Janicke, Birgit


    Live-cell imaging enables studying dynamic cellular processes that cannot be visualized in fixed-cell assays. An increasing number of scientists in academia and the pharmaceutical industry are choosing live-cell analysis over or in addition to traditional fixed-cell assays. We have developed a time-lapse label-free imaging cytometer HoloMonitorM4. HoloMonitor M4 assists researchers to overcome inherent disadvantages of fluorescent analysis, specifically effects of chemical labels or genetic modifications which can alter cellular behavior. Additionally, label-free analysis is simple and eliminates the costs associated with staining procedures. The underlying technology principle is based on digital off-axis holography. While multiple alternatives exist for this type of analysis, we prioritized our developments to achieve the following: a) All-inclusive system - hardware and sophisticated cytometric analysis software; b) Ease of use enabling utilization of instrumentation by expert- and entrylevel researchers alike; c) Validated quantitative assay end-points tracked over time such as optical path length shift, optical volume and multiple derived imaging parameters; d) Reliable digital autofocus; e) Robust long-term operation in the incubator environment; f) High throughput and walk-away capability; and finally g) Data management suitable for single- and multi-user networks. We provide examples of HoloMonitor applications of label-free cell viability measurements and monitoring of cell cycle phase distribution.

  18. Concise review: animal substance-free human embryonic stem cells aiming at clinical applications. (United States)

    Hovatta, Outi; Rodin, Sergey; Antonsson, Liselotte; Tryggvason, Karl


    Human embryonic stem cells have been considered the gold standard as a cell source for regenerative medicine since they were first cultured in 1998. They are pluripotent and can form principally all the cells types in the body. They are obtained from supernumerary human in vitro fertilization embryos that cannot be used for infertility treatment. Following studies on factors regulating pluripotency and differentiation, we now have techniques to establish and effectively expand these cells in animal substance-free conditions, even from single cells biopsied from eight-cell stage embryos in chemically defined feeder-free cultures. The genetic stability and absence of tumorigenic mutations can be determined. There are satisfactory animal tests for functionality and safety. The first clinical trials are ongoing for two indications: age-related macular degeneration and spinal cord injury.

  19. Effect Of Free Radical Quenchers On Dye-Mediated Laser Light Induced Photosensitization Of Leukemic Cells (United States)

    Gulliya, Kirpal S.; Matthews, James L.; Fay, Joseph W.; Dowben, Robert M.


    The effect of free radical quenchers (ascorbate, catalase, and mannitol) on merocyanine 540 (MC540) mediated, laser light induced photolysis of human acute promyelocytic leukemia cell line (HL-60) was investigated. Results show that in the presence of human albumin (0.25%), dye-mediated (2014/m1), laser light induced photolysis of leukemic cells resulted in a 99.9999% cell kill. Seventy percent of the normal bone marrow cells survived the treatment. The addition of free radical quenchers prior to laser irradiation procedure increases the HL-60 cell survival. Increases of 5.5% and 4.4%, respectively, were observed in the presence of catalase and ascorbate or mannitol. In the presence of a mixture of catalase and mannitol or catalase and ascorbate, this increase in viability was not observed. However, the viability of normal bone marrow cells under these conditions also decreased from 70% to 63%. These findings may be useful in ex-vivo bone marrow purging.

  20. Fluorescence dequenching makes haem-free soluble guanylate cyclase detectable in living cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linda S Hoffmann

    Full Text Available In cardiovascular disease, the protective NO/sGC/cGMP signalling-pathway is impaired due to a decreased pool of NO-sensitive haem-containing sGC accompanied by a reciprocal increase in NO-insensitive haem-free sGC. However, no direct method to detect cellular haem-free sGC other than its activation by the new therapeutic class of haem mimetics, such as BAY 58-2667, is available. Here we show that fluorescence dequenching, based on the interaction of the optical active prosthetic haem group and the attached biarsenical fluorophor FlAsH can be used to detect changes in cellular sGC haem status. The partly overlap of the emission spectrum of haem and FlAsH allows energy transfer from the fluorophore to the haem which reduces the intensity of FlAsH fluorescence. Loss of the prosthetic group, e.g. by oxidative stress or by replacement with the haem mimetic BAY 58-2667, prevented the energy transfer resulting in increased fluorescence. Haem loss was corroborated by an observed decrease in NO-induced sGC activity, reduced sGC protein levels, and an increased effect of BAY 58-2667. The use of a haem-free sGC mutant and a biarsenical dye that was not quenched by haem as controls further validated that the increase in fluorescence was due to the loss of the prosthetic haem group. The present approach is based on the cellular expression of an engineered sGC variant limiting is applicability to recombinant expression systems. Nevertheless, it allows to monitor sGC's redox regulation in living cells and future enhancements might be able to extend this approach to in vivo conditions.

  1. Human lymphoblastoid B-cell lines reprogrammed to EBV-free induced pluripotent stem cells. (United States)

    Rajesh, Deepika; Dickerson, Sarah J; Yu, Junying; Brown, Matthew E; Thomson, James A; Seay, Nicholas J


    Generation of patient-specific induced pluripotent cells (iPSCs) holds great promise for regenerative medicine. Epstein-Barr virus immortalized lymphoblastoid B-cell lines (LCLs) can be generated from a minimal amount of blood and are banked worldwide as cellular reference material for immunologic or genetic analysis of pedigreed study populations. We report the generation of iPSCs from 2 LCLs (LCL-iPSCs) via a feeder-free episomal method using a cocktail of transcription factors and small molecules. LCL-derived iPSCs exhibited normal karyotype, expressed pluripotency markers, lost oriP/EBNA-1 episomal vectors, generated teratomas, retained donor identity, and differentiated in vitro into hematopoietic, cardiac, neural, and hepatocyte-like lineages. Significantly, although the parental LCLs express viral EBNA-1 and other Epstein-Barr virus latency-related elements for their survival, their presence was not detectable in LCL-iPSCs. Thus, reprogramming LCLs could offer an unlimited source for patient-specific iPSCs.

  2. TMARKER: A free software toolkit for histopathological cell counting and staining estimation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter J Schüffler


    Full Text Available Background: Histological tissue analysis often involves manual cell counting and staining estimation of cancerous cells. These assessments are extremely time consuming, highly subjective and prone to error, since immunohistochemically stained cancer tissues usually show high variability in cell sizes, morphological structures and staining quality. To facilitate reproducible analysis in clinical practice as well as for cancer research, objective computer assisted staining estimation is highly desirable. Methods: We employ machine learning algorithms as randomized decision trees and support vector machines for nucleus detection and classification. Superpixels as segmentation over the tissue image are classified into foreground and background and thereafter into malignant and benign, learning from the user′s feedback. As a fast alternative without nucleus classification, the existing color deconvolution method is incorporated. Results: Our program TMARKER connects already available workflows for computational pathology and immunohistochemical tissue rating with modern active learning algorithms from machine learning and computer vision. On a test dataset of human renal clear cell carcinoma and prostate carcinoma, the performance of the used algorithms is equivalent to two independent pathologists for nucleus detection and classification. Conclusion: We present a novel, free and operating system independent software package for computational cell counting and staining estimation, supporting IHC stained tissue analysis in clinic and for research. Proprietary toolboxes for similar tasks are expensive, bound to specific commercial hardware (e.g. a microscope and mostly not quantitatively validated in terms of performance and reproducibility. We are confident that the presented software package will proof valuable for the scientific community and we anticipate a broader application domain due to the possibility to interactively learn models for new

  3. Content of intrinsic disorder influences the outcome of cell-free protein synthesis. (United States)

    Tokmakov, Alexander A; Kurotani, Atsushi; Ikeda, Mariko; Terazawa, Yumiko; Shirouzu, Mikako; Stefanov, Vasily; Sakurai, Tetsuya; Yokoyama, Shigeyuki


    Cell-free protein synthesis is used to produce proteins with various structural traits. Recent bioinformatics analyses indicate that more than half of eukaryotic proteins possess long intrinsically disordered regions. However, no systematic study concerning the connection between intrinsic disorder and expression success of cell-free protein synthesis has been presented until now. To address this issue, we examined correlations of the experimentally observed cell-free protein expression yields with the contents of intrinsic disorder bioinformatically predicted in the expressed sequences. This analysis revealed strong relationships between intrinsic disorder and protein amenability to heterologous cell-free expression. On the one hand, elevated disorder content was associated with the increased ratio of soluble expression. On the other hand, overall propensity for detectable protein expression decreased with disorder content. We further demonstrated that these tendencies are rooted in some distinct features of intrinsically disordered regions, such as low hydrophobicity, elevated surface accessibility and high abundance of sequence motifs for proteolytic degradation, including sites of ubiquitination and PEST sequences. Our findings suggest that identification of intrinsically disordered regions in the expressed amino acid sequences can be of practical use for predicting expression success and optimizing cell-free protein synthesis.

  4. Obtention of Free Fatty Acids of Macauba Oil (Acrocomia Aculeata in Organic Solvent Free System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caroline Portilho Trentini


    Full Text Available The present study aimed to investigate the enzymatic hydrolysis of oil Macaúba, to obtain a hydrolyzate rich in free fatty acids (FFA for later use in step esterification. The effect of process variables (percentage of catalyst, temperature and water content was evaluated in the FFA yield, using a factorial experimental design 23, where the positive and significant effect of the variables was observed. The results reported yields of 50.5% in FFA in 6 hours of reaction at 60ºC, water percentage of 15 wt% and catalyst percentage of 5 wt%.

  5. Comparative aspects of somatic cell nuclear transfer with conventional and zona-free method in cattle, horse, pig and sheep. (United States)

    Lagutina, Irina; Lazzari, Giovanna; Duchi, Roberto; Turini, Paola; Tessaro, Irene; Brunetti, Dario; Colleoni, Silvia; Crotti, Gabriella; Galli, Cesare


    Nuclear transfer (NT) is a complex procedure that requires considerable technical skills. Over the years attempts have been made to simplify the micromanipulations involved and to make the procedure more user-friendly. A significant step forwards has been the development of the zona-free NT methods. We have used zona-free NT with mechanical aspiration of the metaphase plate as a mean of enucleation, in a comparative approach with the conventional nuclear transfer zona-enclosed method in cattle, horse, sheep and pig. The absence of the zona considerably facilitates the enucleation step and significantly increases cell fusion success. On the other hand, the culture of zona-free NT embryos requires the embryos to be cultured individually or anyway separated from each other to avoid aggregation and also requires to prolong the in vitro culture up to the blastocyst stage before transfer. Blastocyst rate is equal or higher with zona-free method as compared to zona-enclosed method while survival after cryopreservation and development to term is comparable. In conclusion, our findings, together with published data, demonstrate that the zona-free system described in this paper can significantly increase the output of NT blastocysts over the conventional zona-enclosed system.

  6. Plasma Cell-Free DNA in Paediatric Lymphomas (United States)

    Mussolin, Lara; Burnelli, Roberta; Pillon, Marta; Carraro, Elisa; Farruggia, Piero; Todesco, Alessandra; Mascarin, Maurizio; Rosolen, Angelo


    Background: Extracellular circulating DNA (cfDNA) can be found in small amounts in plasma of healthy individuals. Increased levels of cfDNA have been reported in patients with cancer of breast, cervix, colon, liver and it was shown that cfDNA can originate from both tumour and non-tumour cells. Objectives: Levels of cfDNA of a large series of children with lymphoma were evaluated and analyzed in relation with clinical characteristics. Methods: plasma cfDNA levels obtained at diagnosis in 201 paediatric lymphoma patients [43 Hodgkin lymphomas (HL), 45 anaplastic large cell lymphomas (ALCL), 88 Burkitt lymphomas (BL), 17 lymphoblastic (LBL), 8 diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL)] and 15 healthy individuals were determined using a quantitative PCR assay for POLR2 gene and, in addition, for NPM-ALK fusion gene in ALCL patients. Wilcoxon rank sum test was used to compare plasma levels among different patient subgroups and controls and to analyze relationship between levels of cfDNA and clinical characteristics. Results: Levels of cfDNA in lymphoma patients were significantly higher compared with controls (p<0.0001). CfDNA was associated with median age (p=0.01) in HL, and with stage in ALCL (p=0.01). In HL patients high cfDNA levels were correlated with poor prognosis (p=0.03). In ALCL we found that most of the cfDNA (77%) was non-tumor DNA. Conclusion: level of plasma cfDNA might constitute an important non-invasive tool at diagnosis in lymphoma patients' management; in particular in patients with HL, cfDNA seems to be a promising prognostic biomarker. PMID:23678368

  7. Recombination lifetime of free polarons in polymer/fullerene bulk heterojunction solar cells (United States)

    Li, Kejia; Li, Lijun; Campbell, Joe C.


    The recombination lifetime of free polarons was measured using three different methods: electrical field-dependent photoresponse, transient photoconductivity, and forward-to-zero bias transient-current response. The average free polaron recombination lifetime is estimated to be a few microseconds for poly (3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) and [6,6]-phenyl C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) solar cells. The competition between sweep-out by the internal field and the loss of photogenerated carriers by recombination is analyzed. The short-circuit free polaron collection efficiency for P3HT:PCBM bulk heterojunction material was determined to be in the range of 80% to 90%.

  8. Ligation-free ribosome profiling of cell type-specific translation in the brain. (United States)

    Hornstein, Nicholas; Torres, Daniela; Das Sharma, Sohani; Tang, Guomei; Canoll, Peter; Sims, Peter A


    Ribosome profiling has emerged as a powerful tool for genome-wide measurements of translation, but library construction requires multiple ligation steps and remains cumbersome relative to more conventional deep-sequencing experiments. We report a new, ligation-free approach to ribosome profiling that does not require ligation. Library construction for ligation-free ribosome profiling can be completed in one day with as little as 1 ng of purified RNA footprints. We apply ligation-free ribosome profiling to mouse brain tissue to identify new patterns of cell type-specific translation and test its ability to identify translational targets of mTOR signaling in the brain.

  9. Degradation of Flexible, ITO-Free Oligothiophene Organic Solar Cells. (United States)

    Bormann, Ludwig; Nehm, Frederik; Sonntag, Luisa; Chen, Fan-Yu; Selzer, Franz; Müller-Meskamp, Lars; Eychmüller, Alexander; Leo, Karl


    We investigate the degradation of organic solar cells based on an oligothiophene (DCV5T-Me) small molecule donor and the acceptor C60. Two different flexible, transparent bottom electrode types are employed: a transparent metal electrode (TME) and silver nanowires (AgNWs). They exhibit high optical transparency up to 86% and a sheet resistance as low as 12Ω/□. Power conversion efficiencies of 7.0%, 5.7%, and 7.2% on TME, AgNWs, and indium tin oxide (ITO, reference) are reached, respectively. The solar cells are protected against moisture ingress utilizing a flexible alumina thin-film, exhibiting water vapor transmission rates down to 3 × 10(-5) g m(-2) day(-1) at 38 °C and 90% relative humidity (RH). Implementation of this ultrabarrier as top and bottom encapsulation enables fabrication of fully flexible devices. A decrease in PCE to 80% of initial values is observed after 1000 ± 50 h on flexible, encapsulated TME but only 20 ± 5 h on AgNWs in a climate of 38 °C/50% RH. Degradation in AgNW-based devices is attributed to electrode decomposition.

  10. Cell-free layer and wall shear stress variation in microvessels. (United States)

    Yin, Xuewen; Zhang, Junfeng


    In this study, we simulated multiple red blood cells flowing through straight microvessels with the immersed-boundary lattice-Boltzmann model to examine the shear stress variation on the microvessel surface and its relation to the properties of cell-free layer. Significant variation in shear stress has been observed due to the irregular configuration of blood cells flowing near the microvessel wall. A low shear stress is typically found at locations where there is a cell flowing close to the wall, and a large shear stress at locations with a relatively wide gap between cell and wall. This relationship between the shear stress magnitude and the distance between cell and wall has been attributed to the reverse pressure difference developed between the front and rear sides of a cell flowing near the vessel wall. We further studied the effects of several hemodynamic factors on the variation of shear stress, including the cell deformability, the flow rate, and the aggregation among red blood cells. These simulations show that the shear stress variation is less profound in situations with wider cell-free layers, since the reverse pressure difference around the edge cells is less evident, and the influence of this pressure difference on wall shear stress becomes weaker. This study also demonstrates the complexity of the flow field in the gap between cell and wall. More precise experimental techniques are required accurately measure such shear stress variation in microcirculation.

  11. Cell-free system for synthesizing membrane proteins cell free method for synthesizing membrane proteins (United States)

    Laible, Philip D; Hanson, Deborah K


    The invention provides an in vitro method for producing proteins, membrane proteins, membrane-associated proteins, and soluble proteins that interact with membrane-associated proteins for assembly into an oligomeric complex or that require association with a membrane for proper folding. The method comprises, supplying intracytoplasmic membranes from organisms; modifying protein composition of intracytoplasmic membranes from organism by modifying DNA to delete genes encoding functions of the organism not associated with the formation of the intracytoplasmic membranes; generating appropriate DNA or RNA templates that encode the target protein; and mixing the intracytoplasmic membranes with the template and a transcription/translation-competent cellular extract to cause simultaneous production of the membrane proteins and encapsulation of the membrane proteins within the intracytoplasmic membranes.

  12. A Free-Rider Forecasting Model Based on Gray System Theory in P2P Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    He Xu


    Full Text Available The aim of this study is to forecast the number of free-riders in P2P networks which can help network managers to know the status of the networks in advance and take appropriate measures to cope with free-riding behavior. Free-riding behavior is common in P2P networks, which has a negative impact on the robustness, availability and stability of the networks. Severe free-riding behavior may lead to the crash of the whole P2P application system. Based on the research of free-riding behavior in P2P networks, this paper constructs a free-rider forecasting model (GST model using Gray System Theory. Simulation experiments show that this model has high feasibility, and can carry out reasonable predictions on the number of free-riders in P2P networks.

  13. Improved recovery of bisulphite-treated cell-free DNA in plasma

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Inge Søkilde; Krarup, H.B.; Thorlacius-Ussing, O.;

    Detection of cell-free methylated DNA in plasma is a promising tool for tumour diagnosis and monitoring. Due to the very low amount of cell-free DNA in plasma, sensitivity of the detection methods are of utmost importance. The vast majority of currently available methods for analysing DNA...... of PCR amplifying methylated and umethylated MEST. This procedure allows low levels of DNA to be easily and reliably analysed, a prerequisite for the clinical usefulness of cell-free methylated DNA detection in plasma........ The analytical sensitivity of the method was analysed by detection of methylated/unmethylated copies of the imprinted (and hemimethylated) gene MEST in a dilution series of plasma DNA. The method is based on an accelerated deamination step and magnetic silica purification of DNA in combination with a first round...

  14. A novel method for generating xeno-free human feeder cells for human embryonic stem cell culture. (United States)

    Meng, Guoliang; Liu, Shiying; Krawetz, Roman; Chan, Michael; Chernos, Judy; Rancourt, Derrick E


    Long-term cultures of human embryonic stem (hES) cells require a feeder layer for maintaining cells in an undifferentiated state and increasing karyotype stability. In routine hES cell culture, mouse embryonic fibroblast (MEF) feeders and animal component-containing media (FBS or serum replacement) are commonly used. However, the use of animal materials increases the risk of transmitting pathogens to hES cells and therefore is not optimal for use in cultures intended for human transplantation. There are other limitations with conventional feeder cells, such as MEFs, which have a short lifespan and can only be propagated five to six passages before senescing. Several groups have investigated maintaining existing hES cell lines and deriving new hES cell lines on human feeder layers. However, almost all of these human source feeder cells employed in previous studies were derived and cultured in animal component conditions. Even though one group previously reported the derivation and culture of human foreskin fibroblasts (HFFs) in human serum-containing medium, this medium is not optimal because HFFs routinely undergo senescence after 10 passages when cultured in human serum. In this study we have developed a completely animal-free method to derive HFFs from primary tissues. We demonstrate that animal-free (AF) HFFs do not enter senescence within 55 passages when cultured in animal-free conditions. This methodology offers alternative and completely animal-free conditions for hES cell culture, thus maintaining hES cell morphology, pluripotency, karyotype stability, and expression of pluripotency markers. Moreover, no difference in hES cell maintenance was observed when they were cultured on AF-HFFs of different passage number or independent derivations.

  15. Free Boundary Problems for a Lotka-Volterra Competition System (United States)

    Wang, Mingxin; Zhao, Jingfu


    In this paper we investigate two free boundary problems for a Lotka-Volterra type competition model in one space dimension. The main objective is to understand the asymptotic behavior of the two competing species spreading via a free boundary. We prove a spreading-vanishing dichotomy, namely the two species either successfully spread to the entire space as time t goes to infinity and survive in the new environment, or they fail to establish and die out in the long run. The long time behavior of the solutions and criteria for spreading and vanishing are also obtained. This paper is an improvement and extension of J. Guo and C. Wu.

  16. Microfluidic microbial fuel cells: from membrane to membrane free (United States)

    Yang, Yang; Ye, Dingding; Li, Jun; Zhu, Xun; Liao, Qiang; Zhang, Biao


    Microfluidic microbial fuel cells (MMFCs) are small carbon-neutral devices that use self-organized bacteria to degrade organic substrates and harness energy from the waste water. Conventional MMFCs have made great strides in the past decade and have overcome some limitations, such as high capital costs and low energy output. A co-laminar flow MFC has been first proposed in 2011 with the potential to be an attractively power source to niche applications. Co-laminar MFCs typically operate without any physical membranes separating the reactants, and bacterial ecosystems can be easily manipulated by regulating the inlet conditions. This paper highlights recent accomplishments in the development of co-laminar MFCs, emphasizing basic principles, mass transport and fluid dynamics including boundary layer theory, entrance conditions and mixing zone issues. Furthermore, the development of current techniques, major challenges and the potential research directions are discussed.

  17. Study on persistent infection of Japanese encephalitis virus Beijing-1 strain in serum-free Sf9 cell cultures. (United States)

    Kim, Hun; Lee, Su Jeen; Park, Jin Yong; Park, Yong Wook; Kim, Hyun Sung; Kang, Heui-Yun; Hur, Byung-Ki; Ryu, Yeon-Woo; Han, Sang In; Kim, Jong Su


    Sf9 cells have obvious advantages for the conventional production technology of vaccine. They are useful tools for high concentration and large-scale cultures. Sf9 cells were grown to maximal concentration, 8 x 10(6) cells/ml in a 500ml spinner flask, with a doubling time at the exponentially growing phase of 24.5 hours, using serum-free media. To explore the ability of Sf9 cells to be infected by the Japanese encephalitis (JE) virus Beijing-1 strain, Sf9 cells were infected with the virus. By 4-5 days post-infection, 10-15% of the Sf9 cells showed cytopathic effect (CPE), from granularity to the formation of syncytia and multinucleated giant cells continuously observed over a period of 35 days. Positive fluorescent reactions were detected in 30-40% of cells infected with the JE virus Beijing-1 strain, and the uninfected Sf9 cells were completely negative. Virus particles, propagated in Sf9 and Vero cells, were concentrated by sedimentation on 40% trehalose cushions by ultracentrifugation, and showed identical patterns of viral morphogenesis. Complete virus particles, 40 to 50 nm in diameter, were observed, and JE virus envelope (E) proteins, at 53 kDa, were found in the western blot analysis to the anti-JE virus E protein monoclonal antibody and reacted as a magenta band in the same position to the glycoprotein staining. To evaluate whether the infectious virus was produced in Sf9 cells inoculated with the JE virus Beijing-1 stain, Sf9 cells were inoculated with the virus, and sample harvested every 5 days. The titers of the JE virus Beijing-1 strain rose from 1.0 x 10(5) to 1.5 x 10(6) pfu/ml. The infected Sf9 cells could be sub-cultured in serum-free medium, with no change in the plaque sizes formed by the JE virus Beijing-1 strain in the plaque assay. It is suggested that the ability of the JE virus Beijing-1 strain to infect Sf9 cells in serum-free media will provide a useful insect cell system, where the JE virus replication, cytopathogenicity and vaccine

  18. [In vitro cultivation of dendritic cells with serum-free medium]. (United States)

    Zhang, Huai-Dong; Song, Zhen-Lan; Li, Wei-Ping


    This study was aimed to investigate the protocol in vitro to incubate the dendritic cell (DC) derived from peripheral blood monocytes using serum-free medium X-VIVO 20. Peripheral blood monocytes from healthy donors were treated with 100 ng/ml GM-CSF and 500 U/ml IL-4, respectively. After cultivation for 6 days, they were treated with 100 ng/ml calcium ionophore A23187. After cultivation for 24 hours the cellular morphology was observed under invert microscope, the surface markers were analyzed by flow cytometry, the proliferation of allogenetic T cells was detected by MTT colorimetry, the specific cytotoxicity of T cells primed with DC was examined by MTT assay. The results showed that in all three groups with serum-free, fetal calf serum (FCS) and human AB serum mediums, cells displayed characteristic morphological features of DC. Simultaneously CD14 expression was decreased, and CD83, HLA-DR and CDw123 expression were increased on these cells. In addition, DCs cultured with these methods could evidently stimulate the proliferation of allogenetic T cell. As compared with the two controls of serum containing groups, the cultured cells in the serum-free groups showed almost the same allo-stimulatory capability and cellular morphology and surface markers, and T lymphocytes primed with the culture-derived DC exhibited the similar killing activity to K562 (P > 0.05). It is concluded that there is no significance in DC numbers, morphology, epitope and ability to stimulate the proliferation of allogenetic T cells between DC induced by serum-free X-VIVO 20 medium and DC induced by serum-contained medium. DC cultured and induced by serum-free medium is worth using in practice widely.

  19. Lipid nanocarriers based on natural oils with high activity against oxygen free radicals and tumor cell proliferation. (United States)

    Lacatusu, I; Badea, N; Badea, G; Oprea, O; Mihaila, M A; Kaya, D A; Stan, R; Meghea, A


    The development of nano-dosage forms of phytochemicals represents a significant progress of the scientific approach in the biomedical research. The aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness of lipid nanocarriers based on natural oils (grape seed oil, fish oil and laurel leaf oil) in counteracting free radicals and combating certain tumor cells. No drug was encapsulated in the nanocarriers. The cytotoxic effect exerted by bioactive nanocarriers against two tumor cells, MDA-MB 231 and HeLa cell lines, and two normal cells, L929 and B16 cell lines, was measured using the MTT assay, while oxidative damage was assessed by measuring the total antioxidant activity using chemiluminescence analysis. The best performance was obtained for nanocarriers based on an association of grape seed and laurel leaf oils, with a capacity to scavenge about 98% oxygen free radicals. A dose of nanocarriers of 5mg·mL(-1) has led to a drastic decrease in tumor cell proliferation even in the absence of an antitumor drug (e.g. about 50% viability for MDA-MB 231 cell line and 60% viability for HeLa cell line). A comparative survival profile of normal and tumor cells, which were exposed to an effective dose of 2.5mg·mL(-1) lipid nanocarriers, has revealed a death rate of 20% for normal B16 cells and of 40% death rate for MDA-MB 231 and HeLa tumor cells. The results in this study imply that lipid nanocarriers based on grape seed oil in association with laurel leaf oil could be a candidate to reduce the delivery system toxicity and may significantly improve the therapeutic efficacy of antitumor drugs in clinical applications.

  20. In situ label-free cell viability assessment of nucleus pulposus tissue. (United States)

    Dittmar, Roman; van Dijk, Bart G M; van Zandvoort, Marc A M J; Ito, Keita


    Regenerative medicine approaches aiming at treating degenerating intervertebral discs, a major cause of back pain, are increasingly tested in ex-vivo disc explant models mimicking in-vivo conditions. For assessing the efficacy of regenerative therapies, cell viability is commonly measured requiring specific labels to stain cells. Here, we demonstrate and evaluate how cellular auto-fluorescence can be utilized to non-invasively assess viability in disc tissue in-situ using label-free two-photon microscopy. Live and dead bovine disc cells (0% and 100% cell viability) from the nucleus pulposus were seeded into collagen gels and auto-fluorescence was characterized. Subsequently, nucleus pulposus explants were cultured for 6 days in media with different glucose supplementation (0, 0.25, 0.5, and 1 g/L) to induce different degrees of cell death. Then, samples were split and viability was assessed using label-free two-photon microscopy and conventional staining. Results show that live and dead nucleus pulposus cells systematically emit auto-fluorescent light with distinct characteristics. Cell viability values obtained with label-free microscopy did not significantly differ from those acquired with staining. In summary, monitoring auto-fluorescence facilitates accurate cell viability assessment in nucleus tissue requiring no additional dyes. Thus, this technique may be suitable for pre-clinical testing of regenerative therapies in nucleus pulposus cultures. © 2014 Orthopaedic Research Society. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Orthop Res 32:545-550, 2014.


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    A free-boundary model of nonlinear dynamic system for pure forest is presented, in which the felling rate is unbounded nearby the free boundary. The effiect of unbounded function on a priori estimate and analysis of regularity is overcome, and the existence and uniqueness of the global classical solution to this system are proved.

  2. Body-on-a-chip systems for animal-free toxicity testing. (United States)

    Mahler, Gretchen J; Esch, Mandy B; Stokol, Tracy; Hickman, James J; Shuler, Michael L


    Body-on-a-chip systems replicate the size relationships of organs, blood distribution and blood flow, in accordance with human physiology. When operated with tissues derived from human cell sources, these systems are capable of simulating human metabolism, including the conversion of a prodrug to its effective metabolite, as well as its subsequent therapeutic actions and toxic side-effects. The system also permits the measurement of human tissue electrical and mechanical reactions, which provide a measure of functional response. Since these devices can be operated with human tissue samples or with in vitro tissues derived from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS), they can play a significant role in determining the success of new pharmaceuticals, without resorting to the use of animals. By providing a platform for testing in the context of human metabolism, as opposed to animal models, the systems have the potential to eliminate the use of animals in preclinical trials. This article will review progress made and work achieved as a direct result of the 2015 Lush Science Prize in support of animal-free testing.

  3. Femtosecond laser pulses for chemical-free embryonic and mesenchymal stem cell differentiation (United States)

    Mthunzi, Patience; Dholakia, Kishan; Gunn-Moore, Frank


    Owing to their self renewal and pluripotency properties, stem cells can efficiently advance current therapies in tissue regeneration and/or engineering. Under appropriate culture conditions in vitro, pluripotent stem cells can be primed to differentiate into any cell type some examples including neural, cardiac and blood cells. However, there still remains a pressing necessity to answer the biological questions concerning how stem cell renewal and how differentiation programs are operated and regulated at the genetic level. In stem cell research, an urgent requirement on experimental procedures allowing non-invasive, marker-free observation of growth, proliferation and stability of living stem cells under physiological conditions exists. Femtosecond (fs) laser pulses have been reported to non-invasively deliver exogenous materials, including foreign genetic species into both multipotent and pluripotent stem cells successfully. Through this multi-photon facilitated technique, directly administering fs laser pulses onto the cell plasma membrane induces transient submicrometer holes, thereby promoting cytosolic uptake of the surrounding extracellular matter. To display a chemical-free cell transfection procedure that utilises micro-litre scale volumes of reagents, we report for the first time on 70 % transfection efficiency in ES-E14TG2a cells using the enhanced green fluorescing protein (EGFP) DNA plasmid. We also show how varying the average power output during optical transfection influences cell viability, proliferation and cytotoxicity in embryonic stem cells. The impact of utilizing objective lenses of different numerical aperture (NA) on the optical transfection efficiency in ES-E14TG2a cells is presented. Finally, we report on embryonic and mesenchymal stem cell differentiation. The produced specialized cell types could thereafter be characterized and used for cell based therapies.

  4. Identification of Novel GPR55 Modulators Using Cell-Impedance-Based Label-Free Technology. (United States)

    Morales, Paula; Whyte, Lauren S; Chicharro, Roberto; Gómez-Cañas, María; Pazos, M Ruth; Goya, Pilar; Irving, Andrew J; Fernández-Ruiz, Javier; Ross, Ruth A; Jagerovic, Nadine


    The orphan G protein-coupled receptor GPR55 has been proposed as a novel receptor of the endocannabinoid system. However, the validity of this categorization is still under debate mainly because of the lack of potent and selective agonists and antagonists of GPR55. Binding assays are not yet available for GPR55 screening, and discrepancies in GPR55 mediated signaling pathways have been reported. In this context, we have designed and synthesized novel GPR55 ligands based on a chromenopyrazole scaffold. Appraisal of GPR55 activity was accomplished using a label-free cell-impedance-based assay in hGPR55-HEK293 cells. The real-time impedance responses provided an integrative assessment of the cellular consequence to GPR55 stimulation taking into account the different possible signaling pathways. Potent GPR55 partial agonists (14b, 18b, 19b, 20b, and 21-24) have been identified; one of them (14b) being selective versus classical cannabinoid receptors. Upon antagonist treatment, chromenopyrazoles 21-24 inhibited lysophosphatidylinositol (LPI) effect. One of these GPR55 antagonists (21) is fully selective versus classic cannabinoid receptors. Compared to LPI, the predicted physicochemical parameters of the new compounds suggest a clear pharmacokinetic improvement.

  5. Prohibitin reduces mitochondrial free radical production and protects brain cells from different injury modalities (United States)

    Zhou, Ping; Qian, Liping; D’Aurelio, Marilena; Cho, Sunghee; Wang, Gang; Manfredi, Giovanni; Pickel, Virginia; Iadecola, Costantino


    Prohibitin is an essential mitochondrial protein that has been implicated in a wide variety of functions in many cell types, but its role in neurons remains unclear. In a proteomic screen of rat brains in which ischemic tolerance was induced by electrical stimulation of the cerebellar fastigial nucleus, we found that prohibitin is upregulated in mitochondria. This observation prompted us to investigate the role of prohibitin in neuronal death and survival. We found that prohibitin is upregulated also in the ischemic tolerance induced by transient ischemia in vivo, or oxygen-glucose deprivation in neuronal cultures. Cell fractionation and electron microscopic immunolabeling studies demonstrated that prohibitin is localized to neuronal mitochondria. Upregulation of prohibitin in neuronal cultures or hippocampal slices was markedly neuroprotective, whereas prohibitin gene-silencing increased neuronal vulnerability, an effect associated with loss of mitochondrial membrane potential and increased mitochondrial production of reactive oxygen species. Prohibitin upregulation was associated with reduced production of reactive oxygen species in mitochondria exposed to the complex I inhibitor rotenone. In addition, prohibitin protected complex I activity from the inhibitory effects of rotenone. These observations, collectively, establish prohibitin as an endogenous neuroprotective protein involved in ischemic tolerance. Prohibitin exerts beneficial effects on neurons by reducing mitochondrial free radical production. The data with complex I activity suggest that prohibitin may stabilize the function of complex I. The protective effect of prohibitin has potential translational relevance in diseases of the nervous system associated with mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress. PMID:22238093

  6. Cell-free fetal DNA in amniotic fluid supernatant for prenatal diagnosis. (United States)

    Soltani, M; Nemati, M; Maralani, M; Estiar, M A; Andalib, S; Fardiazar, Z; Sakhinia, E


    In widespread conviction, amniotic fluid is utilized for prenatal diagnosis. Amniotic fluid supernatant is usually discarded, notwithstanding being a good source of fetal DNA. The aim of the present study was to assess cell-free fetal DNA extracted from amniotic fluid supernatant for application in prenatal diagnosis such as gender determination and early diagnosis of β-thalassemia. Samples of amniotic fluid of 70 pregnant women were collected and went through routine tests along with tests for cell-free fetal DNA from amniotic fluid supernatant. The DNA in the amniotic fluid supernatant was extracted and analyzed for gender determination by PCR and Real-time PCR. ARMS-PCR was applied to test early diagnosis of IVS II-I mutation (common β-thalassemia mutation) and E7V mutation for sickle cell anemia using DNA extracted from the amniotic fluid supernatant. Using the cell-free fetal DNA extracted from the amniotic fluid supernatant, the sensitivity of PCR and Real-time PCR for gender detection was compared with the routine cytogenetic method. The fetus tested for sickle cell anemia and β-thalassemia was observed to be healthy but heterozygous for IVS II-I mutation. The findings indicated that cell-free fetal DNA from amniotic fluid supernatant can be a good source of fetal DNA and be used in early prenatal diagnosis since because of its fast and accurate application. Therefore, it would be suggested that the amniotic fluid supernatant's disposal is prevented because if the tests needs to be repeated, cell-free fetal DNA extracted from the amniotic fluid supernatant can be used as an alternative source for prenatal diagnosis.

  7. Monitoring of organ transplants through genomic analyses of circulating cell-free DNA (United States)

    de Vlaminck, Iwijn

    Solid-organ transplantation is the preferred treatment for patients with end-stage organ diseases, but complications due to infection and acute rejection undermine its long-term benefits. While clinicians strive to carefully monitor transplant patients, diagnostic options are currently limited. My colleagues and I in the lab of Stephen Quake have found that a combination of next-generation sequencing with a phenomenon called circulating cell-free DNA enables non-invasive diagnosis of both infection and rejection in transplantation. A substantial amount of small fragments of cell-free DNA circulate in blood that are the debris of dead cells. We discovered that donor specific DNA is released in circulation during injury to the transplant organ and we show that the proportion of donor DNA in plasma is predictive of acute rejection in heart and lung transplantation. We profiled viral and bacterial DNA sequences in plasma of transplant patients and discovered that the relative representation of different viruses and bacteria is informative of immunosuppression. This discovery suggested a novel biological measure of a person's immune strength, a finding that we have more recently confirmed via B-cell repertoire sequencing. Lastly, our studies highlight applications of shotgun sequencing of cell-free DNA in the broad, hypothesis free diagnosis of infection.

  8. Toward label-free Raman-activated cell sorting of cardiomyocytes derived from human embryonic stem cells (United States)

    Pascut, Flavius C.; Goh, Huey T.; George, Vinoj; Denning, Chris; Notingher, Ioan


    Raman micro-spectroscopy (RMS) has been recently proposed for label-free phenotypic identification of human embryonic stem cells (hESC)-derived cardiomyocytes. However, the methods used for measuring the Raman spectra led to acquisition times of minutes per cell, which is prohibitive for rapid cell sorting applications. In this study we evaluated two measurement strategies that could reduce the measurement time by a factor of more than 100. We show that sampling individual cells with a laser beam focused to a line could eliminate the need of cell raster scanning and achieve high prediction accuracies (>95% specificity and >96% sensitivity) with acquisition times ~5 seconds per cell. However, the use of commercially-available higher power lasers could potentially lead to sorting speeds of ~10 cells per s. This would start to progress RMS to the field of cell sorting for applications such as enrichment and purification of hESC-derived cardiomyocytes.

  9. Xeno-Free Extraction, Culture, and Cryopreservation of Human Adipose-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells. (United States)

    Escobar, Carlos Hugo; Chaparro, Orlando


    Molecules of animal or bacterial origin, which pose a risk for zoonoses or immune rejection, are commonly used for extraction, culture, and cryopreservation of mesenchymal stem cells. There is no sequential and orderly protocol for producing human adipose-derived stem cells (hASCs) under xeno-free conditions. After standardizing a human platelet lysate (hPL) production protocol, four human adipose tissue samples were processed through explants with fetal bovine serum (FBS)-supplemented or hPL-supplemented media for extracting the adipose-derived stem cells. The cells were cultivated in cell culture medium + hPL (5%) or FBS (10%). The cellular replication rate, immunophenotype, and differentiation potential were evaluated at fourth passage. Cellular viability was evaluated before and after cryopreservation of the cells, with an hPL-based solution compared with an FBS-based solution. The explants cultured in hPL-supplemented media showed earlier and faster hASC proliferation than did those supplemented with FBS. Likewise, cells grown in hPL-supplemented media showed a greater proliferation rate, without losing the immunophenotype. Osteogenic differentiation of xeno-free hASC was higher than the hASC produced in standard conditions. However, adipogenic differentiation was reduced in xeno-free hASC. Finally, the cells cryopreserved in an hPL-based solution showed a higher cellular viability than the cells cryopreserved in an FBS-based. In conclusion, we have developed a complete xeno-free protocol for extracting, culturing, and cryopreserving hASCs that can be safely implemented in clinical studies.

  10. The Influence of Different Cell Disruption Methods on the Activity of the Extract in Cell-free Protein Synthesis System%不同细胞破碎方法对无细胞蛋白表达系统细胞抽提物活性的影响

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    王雪; 权春善; 王建华; 范圣第


    Cell-free (CF) protein expression system can be effectively used for membrane protein and other toxic protein expression. In recent two decades, CF system has received wide range of attention and the yield was significantly improved. The extract activity is the critical factor that affects the efficiency of protein synthesis system. If a simple method could be established to evaluate the activity of the extract, lots of time and cost would be saved up. Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G-6-PDH) was the key regulatory enzyme in the pentose phosphate pathway in the glucose metabolism, therefore the activity of G-6-PDH could be utilized as an indicator to assess the extract activity. A convenient and feasible method was established , which use the activity of G-6PDH in the extract to evaluate the extract activity. Three kinds cell disruption methods were compared, which included mechanical crushing, high pressure crushing and sonication, and the optimum conditions of each method were obtained. The mechanical crushing method got the most active extract by using 0. 1 mm-diameter glass beads at 5 000r/min for 6 times. When the disruption pressure was 1 300 bar, the activity of the extract reached the highest point. The sonication method got the best result at 60% power level, 30 cycles. The results indicated that the activity of the extract obtained by mechanical crushing and sonication methods were a little higher than the high pressure disruption.%无细胞蛋白表达系统由于能够有效表达膜蛋白等有毒性蛋白,因此近二十年受到了关注,其蛋白表达产率有了显著的提高.细胞抽提物活性的高低是无细胞蛋白表达系统高效运行的关键,若找到简单易行的活性评估方法,将大大降低成本及时间.葡萄糖-6-磷酸脱氢酶(glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase,G-6-PDH)是糖代谢的戊糖磷酸途径中的关键调控酶,该酶可以被用来评估细胞抽提物的活性.以G-6-PDH的活性为指标对无细

  11. Oil-Free shaft support system rotordynamics: Past, present and future challenges and opportunities (United States)

    DellaCorte, Christopher


    Recent breakthroughs in Oil-Free technologies have enabled new high-speed rotor systems and turbomachinery. Such technologies can include compliant-surface gas bearings, magnetic bearings and advanced solid lubricants and tribo-materials. This presentation briefly reviews critical technology developments and the current state-of-the-art, emerging Oil-Free rotor systems and discusses obstacles preventing more widespread use. Key examples of "best practices" for deploying Oil-Free technologies will be presented and remaining major technical questions surrounding Oil-Free technologies will be brought forward.

  12. An impedance-based cytotoxicity assay for real-time and label-free assessment of T-cell-mediated killing of adherent cells. (United States)

    Peper, Janet Kerstin; Schuster, Heiko; Löffler, Markus W; Schmid-Horch, Barbara; Rammensee, Hans-Georg; Stevanović, Stefan


    The in vitro assessment of T-cell-mediated cytotoxicity plays an important and increasingly relevant role both in preclinical target evaluation and during immunomonitoring to accompany clinical trials employing targeted immunotherapies. For a long time, the gold standard for this purpose has been the chromium release assay (CRA). This end point assay, however, shows several disadvantages including the inevitable use of radioactivity. Based on electrical impedance measurements (using the xCELLigence system), we have established a label-free assay, facilitating the real-time monitoring of T-cell-mediated cytotoxicity. The coculture of peptide-specific T-cell lines with peptide-loaded target cells reproducibly led to a decrease in impedance due to induced apoptosis and detachment of target cells. Comparing our results to the standard CRA assay, we could demonstrate that impedance-based measurements show comparable results after short incubation periods (6h) but outperform the CRA both in reproducibility and sensitivity after prolonged incubation (24h), enabling the detection of target cell lysis with an effector to target ratio as low as 0.05:1. The impedance-based assay represents a valuable and highly sensitive tool for label-free real-time high throughput analysis of T-cell-mediated cytotoxicity.

  13. Solid/liquid interfacial free energies in binary systems (United States)

    Nason, D.; Tiller, W. A.


    Description of a semiquantitative technique for predicting the segregation characteristics of smooth interfaces between binary solid and liquid solutions in terms of readily available thermodynamic parameters of the bulk solutions. A lattice-liquid interfacial model and a pair-bonded regular solution model are employed in the treatment with an accommodation for liquid interfacial entropy. The method is used to calculate the interfacial segregation and the free energy of segregation for solid-liquid interfaces between binary solutions for the (111) boundary of fcc crystals. The zone of compositional transition across the interface is shown to be on the order of a few atomic layers in width, being moderately narrower for ideal solutions. The free energy of the segregated interface depends primarily upon the solid composition and the heats of fusion of the component atoms, the composition difference of the solutions, and the difference of the heats of mixing of the solutions.

  14. Control of a free-flying robot manipulator system (United States)

    Alexander, H.


    The development of and test control strategies for self-contained, autonomous free flying space robots are discussed. Such a robot would perform operations in space similar to those currently handled by astronauts during extravehicular activity (EVA). Use of robots should reduce the expense and danger attending EVA both by providing assistance to astronauts and in many cases by eliminating altogether the need for human EVA, thus greatly enhancing the scope and flexibility of space assembly and repair activities. The focus of the work is to develop and carry out a program of research with a series of physical Satellite Robot Simulator Vehicles (SRSV's), two-dimensionally freely mobile laboratory models of autonomous free-flying space robots such as might perform extravehicular functions associated with operation of a space station or repair of orbiting satellites. It is planned, in a later phase, to extend the research to three dimensions by carrying out experiments in the Space Shuttle cargo bay.

  15. Optical multiaccess free-space laser communication system (United States)

    Jiang, Lun; Zhang, Li-Zhong; Wang, Chao; An, Yan; Hu, Yuan


    With urgent demand for an integrated information network and development of free-space laser communication technology, research on high-rate laser communication networking technology is vital. This study analyzed the technical difficulties related to space laser communication networking and proposed a laser communication networking solution. A wide-angle beam expander and dual-rotating prism group were incorporated into a multiaccess optical laser communication antenna. The wide-angle beam expander collects signal light from different directions; the dual-rotating prism group tracks different targets simultaneously. This paper presents an overall scheme allowing multiaccess free-space laser communications based on the optical antenna described and the associated relay optics and transceiver subsystems.

  16. Development of Dendritic Cell System

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Li Wu; Aleksandar Dakic


    The dendritic cell system contains conventional dendritic cells (DCs) and plasmacytoid pre-dendritic cells (pDCs). Both DCs and pDCs are bone marrow derived cells. Although the common functions of DCs are antigen-processing and T-lymphocyte activation, they differ in surface markers, migratory patterns, and cytokine output. These differences can determine the fate of the T cells they activate. Several subsets of mature DCs have been described in both mouse and human and the developmental processes of these specialized DC subsets have been studied extensively. The original concept that all DCs were of myeloid origin was questioned by several recent studies, which demonstrated that in addition to the DCs derived from myeloid precursors,some DCs could also be efficiently generated from lymphoid-restricted precursors. Moreover, it has been shown recently that both conventional DCs and pDCs can be generated by the Flt3 expressing hemopoietic progenitors regardless of their myeloid- or lymphoid-origin. These findings suggest an early developmental flexibility of precursors for DCs and pDCs. This review summarizes some recent observations on the development of DC system in both human and mouse.

  17. Rapid differentiation of human ESCs into RPE cells by defined xeno-free culture system%无动物源性成分培养体系快速诱导人胚胎干细胞向视网膜色素上皮细胞的分化

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘秋慧; 王菁; 田蓉; 王肖; 曹迪; 卢晶; 罗燕


    Background Subretinal transplantation of retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells for the treatment of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) have accelerated the drive to develop xeno-free cultivation system that support the rapid differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) into ES-RPE cells.Objective This study was to report a modified xeno-free culture system and method for accelerating derivation of hESCs to differentiate into RPE cells.Methods This study was approved by Ethic Committee of Zhongshan Ophthalmic Center.HESC H1 line was cloned and cuhured in Vitronectin XFTM-coated 6-well dish with xenogenetic-free medium.Cells were cultured in 50 ng/ml noggin,10 ng/ml DKK-1 and 10 ng/ml insulin like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) medium for 2 days,and then the concentration of noggin was decreased to 10 ng/ml and 5 ng/ml basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) and cultured for the following 2 days.Sequentially,noggin and bFGF were removed and cultured for 2 days.Finally,1 μmol/L CHIR99021 was added in medium for 6 days.Morphological changes in the progress of ESCs differentiation into RPE were observed by Living Cell Imaging System.The expression of Mitf and RPE65,RPE cellsspecific markers,in the cells were detected by immunofluorescence technique,and the relative expression levels of RPE cells-specific marker mRNA were assayed using real time fluorescent quantitation PCR.Results Polygonalshape monolayer cells which contained pigments were initially observed at day 14 after cultured with the cobblestonelike arrangement.Mitf and RPE65 were strongly expressed in the hES-derived RPE cells 35 days after induced,showing red fluorescence,and the cells presented hexagonal shape at cultured day 60 with numerous pigment granules in cytoplasm.Compared with before differentiation,the expression levels of Mitf mRNA in hES-RPE cells increased by (3.43±2.77) folds and (8.91 ± 2.83) folds,and the expression levels of RPE65 mRNA increased by (14.60 ± 3.94) folds and (87.16

  18. A simple and highly stable free-flow electrophoresis device with thermoelectric cooling system. (United States)

    Yan, Jian; Guo, Cheng-Gang; Liu, Xiao-Ping; Kong, Fan-Zhi; Shen, Qiao-Yi; Yang, Cheng-Zhang; Li, Jun; Cao, Cheng-Xi; Jin, Xin-Qiao


    Complex assembly, inconvenient operations, poor control of Joule heating and leakage of solution are still fundamental issues greatly hindering application of free-flow electrophoresis (FFE) for preparative purpose in bio-separation. To address these issues, a novel FFE device was developed based on our previous work. Firstly, a new mechanical structure was designed for compact assembly of separation chamber, fast removal of air bubble, and good anti-leakage performance. Secondly, a highly efficient thermoelectric cooling system was used for dispersing Joule heating for the first time. The systemic experiments revealed the three merits: (i) 3min assembly without any liquid leakage, 80 times faster than pervious FFE device designed by us or commercial device (4h); (ii) 5s removing of air bubble in chamber, 1000-fold faster than a normal one (2h or more) and (iii) good control of Joule heating by the cooling system. These merits endowed the device high stable thermo- and hydro-dynamic flow for long-term separation even under high electric field of 63V/cm. Finally, the developed device was used for up to 8h continuous separation of 5mg/mL fuchsin acid and purification of three model proteins of phycocyanin, myoglobin and cytochrome C, demonstrating the applicability of FFE. The developed FFE device has evident significance to the studies on stem cell, cell or organelle proteomics, and protein complex as well as micro- or nano-particles.

  19. Stirred tank bioreactor culture combined with serum-/xenogeneic-free culture medium enables an efficient expansion of umbilical cord-derived mesenchymal stem/stromal cells. (United States)

    Mizukami, Amanda; Fernandes-Platzgummer, Ana; Carmelo, Joana G; Swiech, Kamilla; Covas, Dimas T; Cabral, Joaquim M S; da Silva, Cláudia L


    Mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSC) are being widely explored as promising candidates for cell-based therapies. Among the different human MSC origins exploited, umbilical cord represents an attractive and readily available source of MSC that involves a non-invasive collection procedure. In order to achieve relevant cell numbers of human MSC for clinical applications, it is crucial to develop scalable culture systems that allow bioprocess control and monitoring, combined with the use of serum/xenogeneic (xeno)-free culture media. In the present study, we firstly established a spinner flask culture system combining gelatin-based Cultispher(®) S microcarriers and xeno-free culture medium for the expansion of umbilical cord matrix (UCM)-derived MSC. This system enabled the production of 2.4 (±1.1) x10(5) cells/mL (n = 4) after 5 days of culture, corresponding to a 5.3 (±1.6)-fold increase in cell number. The established protocol was then implemented in a stirred-tank bioreactor (800 mL working volume) (n = 3) yielding 115 million cells after 4 days. Upon expansion under stirred conditions, cells retained their differentiation ability and immunomodulatory potential. The development of a scalable microcarrier-based stirred culture system, using xeno-free culture medium that suits the intrinsic features of UCM-derived MSC represents an important step towards a GMP compliant large-scale production platform for these promising cell therapy candidates.


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    IntroductionThe cultivation of insect cells is presently gainingin popularity mainly for the expression of high-valueheterologous proteins using genetically engineeredbaculoviruseslll. Efficient production of these proteinsrequires a suitable insect cell culture system, includingthe improved cell line with high productivity, suitableculture media and favorable environment that couldstrongly support cell growth.Tn-SBI-4 (Tns ) is a novel cell line establishedfrom Tnt midgut tissue, This cell line proved topo...

  1. [Hyper-free fatty acidemia - insulin resistance and β-cell death]. (United States)

    Csala, Miklós


    The increasing prevalence of type 2 diabetes correlates with the rapid spread of obesity worldwide. Adipocytes are strained by the demand of excessive storage, and the local inflammation accelerates triglyceride turnover, which elevates the plasma levels of free fatty acids. Sustained hyper-free fatty acidemia leads to disturbances in cellular functions (lipotoxicity) or even to programmed cell death. Activated stress kinases interfere with insulin signaling, and often facilitate apoptosis. Hyper-free fatty acidemia, therefore, links obesity to diabetes through insulin resistance and β-cell damage. Lipotoxicity research - including the comparison of the effects exerted by saturated, unsaturated and trans fatty acids - provides explanations for long-known phenomena. Our widening knowledge in the field offers new strategies for prevention and treatment of the metabolic syndrome and diabetes.

  2. Label-free detection of liver cancer cells by aptamer-based microcantilever biosensor. (United States)

    Chen, Xuejuan; Pan, Yangang; Liu, Huiqing; Bai, Xiaojing; Wang, Nan; Zhang, Bailin


    Liver cancer is one of the most common and highly malignant cancers in the world. There are no effective therapeutic options if an early liver cancer diagnosis is not achieved. In this work, detection of HepG2 cells by label-free microcantilever array aptasensor was developed. The sensing microcantilevers were functionalized by HepG2 cells-specific aptamers. Meanwhile, to eliminate the interferences induced by the environment, the reference microcantilevers were modified with 6-mercapto-1-hexanol self-assembled monolayers. The aptasensor exhibits high specificity over not only human liver normal cells, but also other cancer cells of breast, bladder, and cervix tumors. The linear relation ranges from 1×10(3) to 1×10(5)cells/mL, with a detection limit of 300 cells/mL (S/N=3). Our work provides a simple method for detection of liver cancer cells with advantages in terms of simplicity and stability.

  3. Cell lines, Md108 and Md66, from the hemocytes of Malacosoma disstria (Lepidoptera) display aspects of plasma-free innate non-self activities. (United States)

    Lapointe, Jason F; Dunphy, Gary B; Giannoulis, Paschalis; Mandato, Craig A; Nardi, James B; Gharib, Osama H; Niven, Donald F


    The innate non-self response systems of the deciduous tree pest, the forest tent caterpillar, Malacosoma disstria has been documented by us in terms of in vitro and in vivo reactions towards the Gram-positive nonpathogenic bacterium, Bacillus subtilis and Gram-negative pathogenic microbe, Xenorhabdus nematophila and their respective surface antigens, lipopoteichoic acids (LTA) and lipopolysaccharides (LPS). These studies, often conducted in whole and diluted hemolymph, preclude examination of plasma-free cellular (hemocyte) responses. Plasma-free hemocytes as primary cultures are difficult to obtain. The floating cell line Md66 and attached cell line Md108 from M. disstria hemocytes were examined as a model for plasma-free M. disstria hemocyte non-self responses. Herein, it was established that although both lines differed from each other and from the primary hemocyte cultures of M. disstria in growth parameters, cell composition and sizes both cell lines displayed granular cell-like (GL) cells and plasmatocyte-like (PL) cells according to morphological criteria and to some extent antigenic similarities based on labeling with anti-Chrysodeixis includens hemocyte monoclonal antibodies. Hemocyte-specific neuroglian-like protein was detected on cells of both cell lines and in the primary hemocyte cultures albeit with staining patterns differing according to culture and cell types, confluency levels and cell-cell adhesion. Both cell lines bound B. subtilis and X. nematophila, the reaction extent varying with the cell line and its cell types. LPS damaged both cell types in the two cell lines whereas LTA enhanced the adhesion of Md66 GL cells to flask surfaces followed by PL cell adhesion. PL cells of both lines, like the primary cultures, phagocytosed FITC-labeled B. subtilis; only Md108 GL cells phagocytosed B. subtilis. In either case phagocytosis was always less in frequency and intensity than the primary cultures. Proteins released from the cell lines differed in

  4. Determination of Free and Total Sulfites in Wine using an Automatic Flow Injection Analysis System with Voltammetric Detection


    Gonçalves, Luís Moreira; Pacheco, João Grosso; Magalhães, Paulo Jorge; Rodrigues, José António; Barros, Aquiles Araújo


    Abstract An automated Flow Injection Analysis (FIA) system based on a initial analyte separation by gas-diffusion and subsequent determination by square-wave voltammetry (SWV) in a flow cell is proposed for the determination of total and free content of sulphur dioxide (SO2) in wine. The proposed method was compared with two iodometric methodologies (the Ripper method and the simplified method commonly used by the wine industry). The developed method shown repeatability (RSD lower ...

  5. Original Research: Label-free detection for radiation-induced apoptosis in glioblastoma cells. (United States)

    Qi, Dandan; Feng, Jingwen; Yang, Chengwen; Jin, Changrong; Sa, Yu; Feng, Yuanming


    Current flow cytometry (FCM) requires fluorescent dyes labeling cells which make the procedure costly and time consuming. This manuscript reports a feasibility study of detecting the cell apoptosis with a label-free method in glioblastoma cells. A human glioma cell line M059K was exposed to 8 Gy dose of radiation, which enables the cells to undergo radiation-induced apoptosis. The rates of apoptosis were studied at different time points post-irradiation with two different methods: FCM in combination with Annexin V-FITC/PI staining and a newly developed technique named polarization diffraction imaging flow cytometry. Totally 1000 diffraction images were acquired for each sample and the gray level co-occurrence matrix (GLCM) algorithm was used in morphological characterization of the apoptotic cells. Among the feature parameters extracted from each image pair, we found that the two GLCM parameters of angular second moment (ASM) and sum entropy (SumEnt) exhibit high sensitivities and consistencies as the apoptotic rates (Pa) measured with FCM method. In addition, no significant difference exists between Pa and ASM_S, Pa and SumEnt_S, respectively (P > 0.05). These results demonstrated that the new label-free method can detect cell apoptosis effectively. Cells can be directly used in the subsequent biochemical experiments as the structure and function of cells and biomolecules are well-preserved with this new method.

  6. Free Energies of Formation Measurements on Solid-State Electrochemical Cells (United States)

    Rollino, J. A.; Aronson, S.


    A simple experiment is proposed that can provide the student with some insight into the chemical properties of solids. It also demonstrates the relationship between the Gibbs free energy of formation of an ionic solid and the emf of an electrochemical cell. (DF)

  7. Carbon Supported Polyaniline as Anode Catalyst: Pathway to Platinum-Free Fuel Cells

    CERN Document Server

    Zabrodskii, A G; Malyshkin, V G; Sapurina, I Y


    The effectiveness of carbon supported polyaniline as anode catalyst in a fuel cell (FC) with direct formic acid electrooxidation is experimentally demonstrated. A prototype FC with such a platinum-free composite anode exhibited a maximum room-temperature specific power of about 5 mW/cm2

  8. Cell-free DNA in healthy individuals, noncancerous disease and strong prognostic value in colorectal cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Spindler, Karen-Lise Garm; Appelt, Ane L; Pallisgaard, Niels;


    The purpose was to investigate total cell-free DNA (cfDNA) in colorectal cancer (CRC) patients during treatment with second-line chemotherapy and in healthy controls and patients with different comorbidities. Patient treated with second-line irinotecan for metastatic CRC (n = 100), a cohort of he...

  9. Plasma HER2 amplification in cell-free DNA during neoadjuvant chemotherapy in breast cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bechmann, Troels; Andersen, Rikke Fredslund; Pallisgaard, Niels


    Measurement of human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) gene amplification in cell-free DNA (cfDNA) is an evolving technique in breast cancer, enabling liquid biopsies and treatment monitoring. The present study investigated the dynamics of plasma HER2 gene copy number and amplification in...... in cfDNA during neoadjuvant chemotherapy....

  10. Cell-Free RNA Is a Reliable Fetoplacental Marker in Noninvasive Fetal Sex Determination

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mersy, E.; Faas, B.H.W.; Spierts, S.; Houben, L.M.; Macville, M.V.; Frints, S.G.; Paulussen, A.D.; Veltman, J.A.


    BACKGROUND: Noninvasive genetic tests that use cell-free fetal DNA (cffDNA) are used increasingly in prenatal care. A low amount of cffDNA can have detrimental effects on the reliability of these tests. A marker to confirm the presence of fetal nucleic acids is therefore required that is universally

  11. Cell-free plasma microRNA in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma and disease controls

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carlsen, Anting Liu; Joergensen, Maiken Thyregod; Knudsen, Steen;


    There are no tumor-specific biochemical markers for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC). Tissue-specific gene expression including microRNA (miRNA) profiling, however, identifies specific PDAC signatures. This study evaluates associations between circulating, cell-free plasma-miRNA profiles...

  12. High immunogenic enterovirus 71 strain and its production using serum-free microcarrier Vero cell culture. (United States)

    Liu, Chia-Chyi; Lian, Wei-Cheng; Butler, Michael; Wu, Suh-Chin


    Developing an effective vaccine against enterovirus 71 (EV71) infection provides the best means to control the disease. We have previously reported that large-scale preparation of a low immunogenic EV71 strain can be achieved using serum free microcarrier Vero cell culture in a 2-l bioreactor [Wu SC, Liu CC, Lian WC. Optimization of microcarrier cell culture process for the inactivated enterovirus type 71 vaccine development. Vaccine 2004;22:3858-64]. This present work further investigated the virus growth and the immunogenicity of two high immunogenic strains (EV71-075 and EV71-117) prepared in serum-free microcarrier cell cultures. Our results showed that serum free culture increased cell death rate after infection, reduced the virus specific productivity, but resulted in elicitation of higher neutralizing titers in immunized mice as compared to that parallel obtained in serum-containing cultures. Therefore, serum-free microcarrier culture is a valuable process for developing inactivated EV71 vaccines.

  13. Evaluation of prenatal RHD typing strategies on cell-free fetal DNA from maternal plasma

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M.G.H.M. Grootkerk-Tax; A.A. Soussan; M. de Haas; P.A. Maaskant-van Wijk; C.E. van der Schoot


    BACKGROUND: The discovery of cell-free fetal DNA in maternal plasma led to the development of assays to predict the fetal D status with RHD-specific sequences. Few assays are designed in such a way that the fetus can be typed in RHD psi mothers and that RHD psi fetuses are correctly typed. Owing to

  14. Free carrier generation and recombination in PbS quantum dot solar cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kurpiers, Jona; Balazs, Daniel M.; Paulke, Andreas; Albrecht, Steve; Lange, Ilja; Protesescu, Loredana; Kovalenko, Maksym V.; Loi, Maria Antonietta; Neher, Dieter


    Time Delayed Collection Field and Bias Assisted Charge Extraction (BACE) experiments are used to investigate the charge carrier dynamics in PbS colloidal quantum dot solar cells. We find that the free charge carrier creation is slightly field dependent, thus providing an upper limit to the fill fact

  15. Label-free measurements on cell apoptosis using a terahertz metamaterial-based biosensor (United States)

    Zhang, Caihong; Liang, Lanju; Ding, Liang; Jin, Biaobing; Hou, Yayi; Li, Chun; Jiang, Ling; Liu, Weiwei; Hu, Wei; Lu, Yanqing; Kang, Lin; Xu, Weiwei; Chen, Jian; Wu, Peiheng


    Label-free, real-time, and in-situ measurement on cell apoptosis is highly desirable in cell biology. We propose here a design of terahertz (THz) metamaterial-based biosensor for meeting this requirement. This metamaterial consists of a planar array of five concentric subwavelength gold ring resonators on a 10 μm-thick polyimide substrate, which can sense the change of dielectric environment above the metamaterial. We employ this sensor to an oral cancer cell (SCC4) with and without cisplatin, a chemotherapy drug for cancer treatment, and find a linear relation between cell apoptosis measured by Flow Cytometry and the relative change of resonant frequencies of the metamaterial measured by THz time-domain spectroscopy. This implies that we can determine the cell apoptosis in a label-free manner. We believe that this metamaterial-based biosensor can be developed into a cheap, label-free, real-time, and in-situ detection tool, which is of significant impact on the study of cell biology.

  16. 2D light scattering static cytometry for label-free single cell analysis with submicron resolution. (United States)

    Xie, Linyan; Yang, Yan; Sun, Xuming; Qiao, Xu; Liu, Qiao; Song, Kun; Kong, Beihua; Su, Xuantao


    Conventional optical cytometric techniques usually measure fluorescence or scattering signals at fixed angles from flowing cells in a liquid stream. Here we develop a novel cytometer that employs a scanning optical fiber to illuminate single static cells on a glass slide, which requires neither microfluidic fabrication nor flow control. This static cytometric technique measures two dimensional (2D) light scattering patterns via a small numerical aperture (0.25) microscope objective for label-free single cell analysis. Good agreement is obtained between the yeast cell experimental and Mie theory simulated patterns. It is demonstrated that the static cytometer with a microscope objective of a low resolution around 1.30 μm has the potential to perform high resolution analysis on yeast cells with distributed sizes. The capability of the static cytometer for size determination with submicron resolution is validated via measurements on standard microspheres with mean diameters of 3.87 and 4.19 μm. Our 2D light scattering static cytometric technique may provide an easy-to-use, label-free, and flow-free method for single cell diagnostics.

  17. Disruption of MDCK cell tight junctions by the free-living amoeba Naegleria fowleri. (United States)

    Shibayama, Mineko; Martínez-Castillo, Moisés; Silva-Olivares, Angélica; Galindo-Gómez, Silvia; Navarro-García, Fernando; Escobar-Herrera, Jaime; Sabanero, Myrna; Tsutsumi, Víctor; Serrano-Luna, Jesús


    Naegleria fowleri is the aetiological agent of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis. This parasite invades its host by penetrating the olfactory mucosa. However, the mechanism of epithelium penetration is not well understood. In the present study, we evaluated the effect of N. fowleri trophozoites and the non-pathogenic Naegleria gruberi on Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) tight junction proteins, including claudin-1, occludin and ZO-1, as well as on the actin cytoskeleton. Trophozoites from each of the free-living amoeba species were co-cultured with MDCK cells in a 1 : 1 ratio for 1, 3, 6 or 10 h. Light microscopy revealed that N. fowleri caused morphological changes as early as 3 h post-infection in an epithelial MDCK monolayer. Confocal microscopy analysis revealed that after 10 h of co-culture, N. fowleri trophozoites induced epithelial cell damage, which was characterized by changes in the actin apical ring and disruption of the ZO-1 and claudin-1 proteins but not occludin. Western blot assays revealed gradual degradation of ZO-1 and claudin-1 as early as 3 h post-infection. Likewise, there was a drop in transepithelial electrical resistance that resulted in increased epithelial permeability and facilitated the invasion of N. fowleri trophozoites by a paracellular route. In contrast, N. gruberi did not induce alterations in MDCK cells even at 10 h post-infection. Based on these results, we suggest that N. fowleri trophozoites disrupt epithelial monolayers, which could enable their penetration of the olfactory epithelium and subsequent invasion of the central nervous system.

  18. Patient-specific cardiovascular progenitor cells derived from integration-free induced pluripotent stem cells for vascular tissue regeneration. (United States)

    Hu, Jiang; Wang, Yongyu; Jiao, Jiao; Liu, Zhongning; Zhao, Chao; Zhou, Zhou; Zhang, Zhanpeng; Forde, Kaitlynn; Wang, Lunchang; Wang, Jiangang; Baylink, David J; Zhang, Xiao-Bing; Gao, Shaorong; Yang, Bo; Chen, Y Eugene; Ma, Peter X


    Tissue-engineered blood vessels (TEBVs) are promising in regenerating a live vascular replacement. However, the vascular cell source is limited, and it is crucial to develop a scaffold that accommodates new type of vascular progenitor cells and facilitates in vivo lineage specification of the cells into functional vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) to regenerate vascular tissue. In the present study, integration-free human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) were established from patient peripheral blood mononuclear cells through episomal vector nucleofection of reprogramming factors. The established hiPSCs were then induced into mesoderm-originated cardiovascular progenitor cells (CVPCs) with a highly efficient directed lineage specification method. The derived CVPCs were demonstrated to be able to differentiate into functional VSMCs. Subcutaneous implantation of CVPCs seeded on macroporous nanofibrous poly(l-lactide) scaffolds led to in vivo VSMC lineage specification and matrix deposition inside the scaffolds. In summary, we established integration-free patient-specific hiPSCs from peripheral blood mononuclear cells, derived CVPCs through directed lineage specification, and developed an advanced scaffold for these progenitor cells to further differentiate in vivo into VSMCs and regenerate vascular tissue in a subcutaneous implantation model. This study has established an efficient patient-specific approach towards in vivo regeneration of vascular tissue.

  19. Shift of microRNA profile upon glioma cell migration using patient-derived spheroids and serum-free conditions. (United States)

    Munthe, Sune; Halle, Bo; Boldt, Henning B; Christiansen, Helle; Schmidt, Steffen; Kaimal, Vivek; Xu, Jessica; Zabludoff, Sonya; Mollenhauer, Jan; Poulsen, Frantz R; Kristensen, Bjarne W


    Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most frequent malignant primary brain tumor. A major reason for the overall median survival being only 14.6 months is migrating tumor cells left behind after surgery. Another major reason is tumor cells having a so-called cancer stem cell phenotype being therefore resistant towards traditional chemo- and radiotherapy. A group of novel molecular targets are microRNAs (miRNAs). MiRNAs are small non-coding RNAs exerting post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression. The aim of this study was to identify differentially expressed miRNAs in migrating GBM cells using serum-free stem cell conditions. We used patient-derived GBM spheroid cultures for a novel serum-free migration assay. MiRNA expression of migrating tumor cells isolated at maximum migration speed was compared with corresponding spheroids using an OpenArray Real-Time PCR System. The miRNA profiling revealed 30 miRNAs to be differentially expressed. In total 13 miRNAs were upregulated and 17 downregulated in migrating cells compared to corresponding spheroids. The three most deregulated miRNAs, miR-1227 (up-regulated), miR-32 (down-regulated) and miR-222 (down-regulated), were experimentally overexpressed. A non-significantly increased migration rate was observed after miR-1227 overexpression. A significantly reduced migration rate was observed after miR-32 and miR-222 overexpression. In conclusion a shift in microRNA profile upon glioma cell migration was identified using an assay avoiding serum-induced migration. Both the miRNA profiling and the functional validation suggested that miR-1227 may be associated with increased migration and miR-32 and miR-222 with decreased migration. These miRNAs may represent potential novel targets in migrating glioma cells.

  20. Surprisal analysis characterizes the free energy time course of cancer cells undergoing epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. (United States)

    Zadran, Sohila; Arumugam, Rameshkumar; Herschman, Harvey; Phelps, Michael E; Levine, R D


    The epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) initiates the invasive and metastatic behavior of many epithelial cancers. Mechanisms underlying EMT are not fully known. Surprisal analysis of mRNA time course data from lung and pancreatic cancer cells stimulated to undergo TGF-β1-induced EMT identifies two phenotypes. Examination of the time course for these phenotypes reveals that EMT reprogramming is a multistep process characterized by initiation, maturation, and stabilization stages that correlate with changes in cell metabolism. Surprisal analysis characterizes the free energy time course of the expression levels throughout the transition in terms of two state variables. The landscape of the free energy changes during the EMT for the lung cancer cells shows a stable intermediate state. Existing data suggest this is the previously proposed maturation stage. Using a single-cell ATP assay, we demonstrate that the TGF-β1-induced EMT for lung cancer cells, particularly during the maturation stage, coincides with a metabolic shift resulting in increased cytosolic ATP levels. Surprisal analysis also characterizes the absolute expression levels of the mRNAs and thereby examines the homeostasis of the transcription system during EMT.

  1. Free fucose is a danger signal to human intestinal epithelial cells. (United States)

    Chow, Wai Ling; Lee, Yuan Kun


    Fucose is present in foods, and it is a major component of human mucin glycoproteins and glycolipids. l-Fucose can also be found at the terminal position of many cell-surface oligosaccharide ligands that mediate cell-recognition and adhesion-signalling pathways. Mucin fucose can be released through the hydrolytic activity of pathogens and indigenous bacteria, leading to the release of free fucose into the intestinal lumen. The immunomodulating effects of free fucose on intestinal epithelial cells (enterocyte-like Caco-2) were investigated. It was found that the presence of l-fucose up regulated genes and secretion of their encoded proteins that are involved in both the innate and adaptive immune responses, possibly via the toll-like receptor-2 signalling pathway. These include TNFSF5, TNFSF7, TNF-alpha, IL12, IL17 and IL18. Besides modulating immune reactions in differentiated Caco-2 cells, fucose induced a set of cytokine genes that are involved in the development and proliferation of immune cells. These include the bone morphogenetic proteins (BMP) BMP2, BMP4, IL5, thrombopoietin and erythropoietin. In addition, the up regulated gene expression of fibroblast growth factor-2 may help to promote epithelial cell restitution in conjunction with the enhanced expression of transforming growth factor-beta mRNA. Since the exogenous fucose was not metabolised by the differentiated Caco-2 cells as a carbon source, the reactions elicited were suggested to be a result of the direct interaction of fucose and differentiated Caco-2 cells. The presence of free fucose may signal the invasion of mucin-hydrolysing microbial cells and breakage of the mucosal barrier. The intestinal epithelial cells respond by up regulation and secretion of cytokines, pre-empting the actual invasion of pathogens.

  2. Use of a cocktail of spin traps for fingerprinting large range of free radicals in biological systems. (United States)

    Marchand, Valérie; Charlier, Nicolas; Verrax, Julien; Buc-Calderon, Pedro; Levêque, Philippe; Gallez, Bernard


    It is well established that the formation of radical species centered on various atoms is involved in the mechanism leading to the development of several diseases or to the appearance of deleterious effects of toxic molecules. The detection of free radical is possible using Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) spectroscopy and the spin trapping technique. The classical EPR spin-trapping technique can be considered as a "hypothesis-driven" approach because it requires an a priori assumption regarding the nature of the free radical in order to select the most appropriate spin-trap. We here describe a "data-driven" approach using EPR and a cocktail of spin-traps. The rationale for using this cocktail was that it would cover a wide range of biologically relevant free radicals and have a large range of hydrophilicity and lipophilicity in order to trap free radicals produced in different cellular compartments. As a proof-of-concept, we validated the ability of the system to measure a large variety of free radicals (O-, N-, C-, or S- centered) in well characterized conditions, and we illustrated the ability of the technique to unambiguously detect free radical production in cells exposed to chemicals known to be radical-mediated toxic agents.

  3. Solubility of Acetaminophen in Some Alcohol Free Solvent Systems


    H. Barzegar-Jalali; H Rafati


    In an attempt to formulate an alcohol free acetaminophen solution for use in pediatrics, the effect of different concentra¬tions of polyethylene glycol 400 (PEG 400 ) and polysorbate 80 ( Iween 80 ) on the solubility of the drug in water .as well as in the vehicles composed of (propylene glycol 10?o V/V + glycerol 20% V/V in water ) and (propylene glycol 12?o V/V + glycerol 40?o V/V in water ) was investigated at 20 C. There was a linear relationship between the logarithm of the drug ...

  4. Heavy quark free energies for three quark systems at finite temperature

    CERN Document Server

    Hübner, K; Kaczmarek, O; Vogt, O


    We study the free energy of static three quark systems in singlet, octet, decuplet and average color channels in the quenched approximation and in 2-flavor QCD at finite temperature. We show that in the high temperature phase singlet and decuplet free energies of three quark systems are well described by the sum of the free energies of three diquark systems plus self energy contributions of the three quarks. In the confining low temperature phase we find evidence for a Y-shaped flux tube in SU(3) pure gauge theory, which is less evident in 2-flavor QCD due to the onset of string breaking. We also compare the short distance behavior of octet and decuplet free energies to the free energies of single static quarks in the corresponding color representations.

  5. The design and implementation of the FreeBSD operating system

    CERN Document Server

    McKusick, Marshall Kirk; Watson, Robert N M


    The most complete, authoritative technical guide to the FreeBSD kernel's internal structure has now been extensively updated to cover all major improvements between Versions 5 and 11. Approximately one-third of this edition's content is completely new, and another one-third has been extensively rewritten. Three long-time FreeBSD project leaders begin with a concise overview of the FreeBSD kernel's current design and implementation. Next, they cover the FreeBSD kernel from the system-call level down-from the interface to the kernel to the hardware. Explaining key design decisions, they detail the concepts, data structures, and algorithms used in implementing each significant system facility, including process management, security, virtual memory, the I/O system, filesystems, socket IPC, and networking. This Second Edition * Explains highly scalable and lightweight virtualization using FreeBSD jails, and virtual-machine acceleration with Xen and Virtio device paravirtualization * Describes new security features...

  6. Development of Dendritic Cell System

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LiWu; AleksandarDakic


    The dendritic cell system contains conventional dendritic cells (DCs) and plasmacytoid pre-dendritic cells (pDCs). Both DCs and pDCs are bone marrow derived calls. Although the common functions of DCs are antigen-processing and T-lymphocyte activation, they differ in surface markers, migratory patterns, and cytokine output. These differences can determine the fate of the T cells they activate. Several subsets of mature DCs have been described in both mouse and human and the developmental processes of these specialized DC subsets have been studied extensively. The original concept that all DCs were of myeloid origin was questioned by several recent studies, which demonstrated that in addition to the DCs derived from myeloid precursors, some DCs could also be efficiently generated from lymphoid-restricted precursors. Moreover, it has been shown recently that both conventional DCs and pDCs can be generated by the Fit3 expressing hemopoietic progenitors regardless of their myeloid- or lymphoid-origin. These findings suggest an early developmental flexibility of precursors for DCs and pDCs. This review summarizes some recent observations on the development of DC system in both human and mouse. Cellular & Molecular Immunology. 2004;1(2):112-118.

  7. Solubility of Acetaminophen in Some Alcohol Free Solvent Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Barzegar-Jalali


    Full Text Available In an attempt to formulate an alcohol free acetaminophen solution for use in pediatrics, the effect of different concentra¬tions of polyethylene glycol 400 (PEG 400 and polysorbate 80 ( Iween 80 on the solubility of the drug in water .as well as in the vehicles composed of (propylene glycol 10?o V/V + glycerol 20% V/V in water and (propylene glycol 12?o V/V + glycerol 40?o V/V in water was investigated at 20 C. There was a linear relationship between the logarithm of the drug solubility and volume fraction of PEG 400 in the vehicles. Also, a linear relation was established between the solubility of the drug in water and the volume fraction of Tween 80. After the solubilization studies, the appropriate concentration of the cosolvents and Tween 80 were chosen for the tolerance test of the solutions at a low temperature (4 C against crystalization. These studies led us to propose two alcohol free drug solutions with suitable sweetening and flavoring agents. Properties of the products including a simple method of determination of drug concentration, density and viscosity measure¬ments have been also reported.

  8. Mechatronics in fuel cell systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stefanopoulou, Anna G.; Kyungwon Suh [Mechanical Engineering Department, University of Michigan, 1231 Beal Avenue, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, (United States)


    Power generation from fuel cells (FCs) requires the integration of chemical, fluid, mechanical, thermal, electrical, and electronic subsystems. This integration presents many challenges and opportunities in the mechatronics field. This paper highlights important design issues and poses problems that require mechatronics solutions. The paper begins by describing the process of designing a toy school bus powered by hydrogen for an undergraduate student project. The project was an effective and rewarding educational activity that revealed complex systems issues associated with FC technology. (Author)

  9. Diversity of free-living amoebae in a dual distribution (potable and recycled) water system (United States)

    Free-living amoebae are known to facilitate the growth of water associated pathogens. This study, for the first time, explored the diversity of free-living amoebae in a dual distribution (potable and recycled) water system in Rouse Hill NSW, Australia. Water and biofilm samples w...

  10. VEGF secretion during hypoxia depends on free radicals-induced Fyn kinase activity in mast cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Garcia-Roman, Jonathan; Ibarra-Sanchez, Alfredo; Lamas, Monica [Departamento de Farmacobiologia, Centro de Investigacion y de Estudios Avanzados del IPN (Cinvestav, IPN) (Mexico); Gonzalez Espinosa, Claudia, E-mail: [Departamento de Farmacobiologia, Centro de Investigacion y de Estudios Avanzados del IPN (Cinvestav, IPN) (Mexico)


    Research highlights: {yields} Bone marrow-derived mast cells (BMMCs) secrete functional VEGF but do not degranulate after Cobalt chloride-induced hypoxia. {yields} CoCl{sub 2}-induced VEGF secretion in mast cells occurs by a Ca{sup 2+}-insensitive but brefeldin A and Tetanus toxin-sensitive mechanism. {yields} Trolox and N-acetylcysteine inhibit hypoxia-induced VEGF secretion but only Trolox inhibits Fc{epsilon}RI-dependent anaphylactic degranulation in mast cells. {yields} Src family kinase Fyn activation after free radical production is necessary for hypoxia-induced VEGF secretion in mast cells. -- Abstract: Mast cells (MC) have an important role in pathologic conditions such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), where hypoxia conduce to deleterious inflammatory response. MC contribute to hypoxia-induced angiogenesis producing factors such as vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), but the mechanisms behind the control of hypoxia-induced VEGF secretion in this cell type is poorly understood. We used the hypoxia-mimicking agent cobalt chloride (CoCl{sub 2}) to analyze VEGF secretion in murine bone marrow-derived mast cells (BMMCs). We found that CoCl{sub 2} promotes a sustained production of functional VEGF, able to induce proliferation of endothelial cells in vitro. CoCl{sub 2}-induced VEGF secretion was independent of calcium rise but dependent on tetanus toxin-sensitive vesicle-associated membrane proteins (VAMPs). VEGF exocytosis required free radicals formation and the activation of Src family kinases. Interestingly, an important deficiency on CoCl{sub 2}-induced VEGF secretion was observed in Fyn kinase-deficient BMMCs. Moreover, Fyn kinase was activated by CoCl{sub 2} in WT cells and this activation was prevented by treatment with antioxidants such as Trolox and N-acetylcysteine. Our results show that BMMCs are able to release VEGF under hypoxic conditions through a tetanus toxin-sensitive mechanism, promoted by free radicals

  11. Study of copper-free back contacts to thin film cadmium telluride solar cells (United States)

    Viswanathan, Vijay

    The goals of this project are to study Cu free back contact alternatives for CdS/CdTe thin film solar cells, and to research dry etching for CdTe surface preparation before contact application. In addition, an attempt has been made to evaluate the stability of some of the contacts researched. The contacts studied in this work include ZnTe/Cu2Te, Sb2Te 3, and Ni-P alloys. The ZnTe/Cu2Te contact system is studied as basically an extension of the earlier work done on Cu2Te at USF. RF sputtering from a compound target of ZnTe and Cu2Te respectively deposits these layers on etched CdTe surface. The effect of Cu2Te thickness and deposition temperature on contact and cell performance will be studied with the ZnTe depositions conditions kept constant. C-V measurements to study the effect of contact deposition conditions on CdTe doping will also be performed. These contacts will then be stressed to high temperatures (70--100°C) and their stability with stress time is analyzed. Sb2Te3 will be deposited on glass using RF sputtering, to study film properties with deposition temperature. The Sb2Te 3 contact performance will also be studied as a function of the Sb 2Te3 deposition temperature and thickness. The suitability of Ni-P alloys for back contacts to CdTe solar cells was studied by forming a colloidal mixture of Ni2P in graphite paste. The Ni-P contacts, painted on Br-methanol etched CdTe surface, will be studied as a function of Ni-P concentration (in the graphite paste), annealing temperature and time. Some of these cells will undergo temperature stress testing to determine contact behavior with time. Dry etching of CdTe will be studied as an alternative for wet etching processes currently used for CdTe solar cells. The CdTe surface is isotropically etched in a barrel reactor in N2, Ar or Ar:O 2 ambient. The effect of etching ambient, pressure, plasma power and etch time on contact performance will be studied.

  12. Nitrilase-catalysed conversion of acrylonitrile by free and immobilized cells of Streptomyces sp.

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    V K Nigam; A K Khandelwal; R K Gothwal; M K Mohan; B Choudhury; A S Vidyarthi; P Ghosh


    The biotransformation of acrylonitrile was investigated using thermophilic nitrilase produced from a new isolate Streptomyces sp. MTCC 7546 in both the free and immobilized state. Under optimal conditions, the enzyme converts nitriles to acids without the formation of amides. The whole cells of the isolate were immobilized in agar-agar and the beads so formed were evaluated for 25 cycles at 50°C. The enzyme showed a little loss of activity during reuse. Seventy-one per cent of 0.5 M acrylonitrile was converted to acid at 6 h of incubation at a very low density of immobilized cells, while 100% conversion was observed at 3 h by free cells.

  13. In-Situ Observation of Membrane Protein Folding during Cell-Free Expression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Axel Baumann

    Full Text Available Proper insertion, folding and assembly of functional proteins in biological membranes are key processes to warrant activity of a living cell. Here, we present a novel approach to trace folding and insertion of a nascent membrane protein leaving the ribosome and penetrating the bilayer. Surface Enhanced IR Absorption Spectroscopy selectively monitored insertion and folding of membrane proteins during cell-free expression in a label-free and non-invasive manner. Protein synthesis was performed in an optical cell containing a prism covered with a thin gold film with nanodiscs on top, providing an artificial lipid bilayer for folding. In a pilot experiment, the folding pathway of bacteriorhodopsin via various secondary and tertiary structures was visualized. Thus, a methodology is established with which the folding reaction of other more complex membrane proteins can be observed during protein biosynthesis (in situ and in operando at molecular resolution.

  14. Imbalanced free radicals and antioxidant defense systems in schizophrenia: A comparative study

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LI Hui-chun; CHEN Qiao-zhen; MA Ying; ZHOU Jun-fu


    Objective: To examine changes of blood oxidative-antiovidative level in schizophrenic patients and its relationship with clinical symptoms. Methods: Forty-six Chinese patients met DSM-Ⅳ (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-Ⅳ) criteria for schizophrenia and fifty age- and sex-matched healthy controls were enrolled in the present study. Baseline psychiatric symptom severity was assessed with brief psychiatric rating scale, positive and negative syndrome scale on the blood draw day. Fresh blood samples were collected to measure levels of nitric oxide and lipid peroxide in plasma as well as activities of superoxide dismutase, catalase and glutathione peroxidase in red blood cells by spectrophotometric assays simultaneously. Results:Comparison of the biochemical parameters indicated that the level of nitric oxide and lipid peroxide increased in patient group,which represented a positive correlation with positive scale scores; while the activities of three critical enzymes decreased and showed a negative linear correlation. Conclusion: This study showed that there are dysregulation of free radical metabolism and poor activities of the antioxidant defense systems in schizophrenic patients. Excess free radicals formation may play a critical role in the etiology of schizophrenia. Using antioxidants might be an effective therapeutic approach to partially alleviate or prevent the symptoms of schizophrenia.

  15. Label-free three-dimensional imaging of cell nucleus using third-harmonic generation microscopy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lin, Jian; Zheng, Wei; Wang, Zi; Huang, Zhiwei, E-mail: [Optical Bioimaging Laboratory, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore 117576 (Singapore)


    We report the implementation of the combined third-harmonic generation (THG) and two-photon excited fluorescence (TPEF) microscopy for label-free three-dimensional (3-D) imaging of cell nucleus morphological changes in liver tissue. THG imaging shows regular spherical shapes of normal hepatocytes nuclei with inner chromatin structures while revealing the condensation of chromatins and nuclear fragmentations in hepatocytes of diseased liver tissue. Colocalized THG and TPEF imaging provides complementary information of cell nuclei and cytoplasm in tissue. This work suggests that 3-D THG microscopy has the potential for quantitative analysis of nuclear morphology in cells at a submicron-resolution without the need for DNA staining.

  16. Solution-Grown Monocrystalline Hybrid Perovskite Films for Hole-Transporter-Free Solar Cells

    KAUST Repository

    Peng, Wei


    High-quality perovskite monocrystalline films are successfully grown through cavitation-triggered asymmetric crystallization. These films enable a simple cell structure, ITO/CH3NH3PbBr3/Au, with near 100% internal quantum efficiency, promising power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) >5%, and superior stability for prototype cells. Furthermore, the monocrystalline devices using a hole-transporter-free structure yield PCEs ≈6.5%, the highest among other similar-structured CH3NH3PbBr3 solar cells to date.

  17. Thermally evaporated methylammonium tin triiodide thin films for lead-free perovskite solar cell fabrication

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yu, Yue; Zhao, Dewei; Grice, Corey R.; Meng, Weiwei; Wang, Changlei; Liao, Weiqiang; Cimaroli, Alexander J.; Zhang, Hongmei; Zhu, Kai; Yan, Yanfa


    We report on the synthesis of methylammonium tin triiodide (MASnI3) thin films at room temperature by a hybrid thermal evaporation method and their application in fabricating lead (Pb)-free perovskite solar cells. The as-deposited MASnI3 thin films exhibit smooth surfaces, uniform coverage across the entire substrate, and strong crystallographic preferred orientation along the <100> direction. By incorporating this film with an inverted planar device architecture, our Pb-free perovskite solar cells are able to achieve an open-circuit voltage (Voc) up to 494 mV. The relatively high Voc is mainly ascribed to the excellent surface coverage, the compact morphology, the good stoichiometry control of the MASnI3 thin films, and the effective passivation of the electron-blocking and hole-blocking layers. Our results demonstrate the potential capability of the hybrid evaporation method to prepare high-quality Pb-free MASnI3 perovskite thin films which can be used to fabricate efficient Pb-free perovskite solar cells.

  18. Fabrication of stable photovoltachromic cells using a solvent-free hybrid polymer electrolyte. (United States)

    Yang, Ming-Che; Cho, Hsun-Wei; Wu, Jih-Jen


    In this work, photovoltachromic cells (PVCCs) are fabricated using a solvent-free polyethylene glycol (PEG)-titanium hybrid polymer electrolyte. With appropriate addition of 1,2-dimethyl-3-propylimidazolium iodide in the electrolyte, the range of tunable colored-state transmittance of the PVCC is enlarged due to an improved fill factor. A transmittance modulation larger than 40% can be maintained for at least 3 months, demonstrating the good long-term stability of PVCCs fabricated using the solvent-free PEG-Ti hybrid electrolyte.

  19. Brief review on plasma propulsion with neutralizer-free systems (United States)

    Rafalskyi, D.; Aanesland, A.


    Electric space propulsion is an intensively developing field addressing new demands and challenges for long-term spacecraft operation. Many novel plasma propulsion concepts aim to find new acceleration principles, use alternative propellants, upscale or downscale thrusters for large thrust or for very small spacecrafts etc. In this work we review the neutralizer-free concepts, where both positive and negative particles are extracted and accelerated from plasmas. We can divide these concepts into three main categories, defined by their acceleration principle: (i) neutral beam generation, (ii) plasma acceleration/expansion and (iii) bipolar beam acceleration. We describe the basic physical principles and evaluate the main advantages and drawbacks in view of general space applications. We also present here further detail on a recent concept where RF voltages are used to accelerate quasi-simultaneously positive ions and electrons from the same source.

  20. Phase Space Cell in Nonextensive Classical Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Piero Quarati


    Full Text Available Abstract: We calculate the phase space volume Ω occupied by a nonextensive system of N classical particles described by an equilibrium (or steady-state, or long-term stationary state of a nonequilibrium system distribution function, which slightly deviates from Maxwell-Boltzmann (MB distribution in the high energy tail. We explicitly require that the number of accessible microstates does not change respect to the extensive MB case. We also derive, within a classical scheme, an analytical expression of the elementary cell that can be seen as a macrocell, different from the third power of Planck constant. Thermodynamic quantities like entropy, chemical potential and free energy of a classical ideal gas, depending on elementary cell, are evaluated. Considering the fractional deviation from MB distribution we can deduce a physical meaning of the nonextensive parameter q of the Tsallis nonextensive thermostatistics in terms of particle correlation functions (valid at least in the case, discussed in this work, of small deviations from MB standard case.

  1. Metal-free organic dyes for dye-sensitized solar cells: from structure: property relationships to design rules. (United States)

    Mishra, Amaresh; Fischer, Markus K R; Bäuerle, Peter


    Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSC) have attracted considerable attention in recent years as they offer the possibility of low-cost conversion of photovoltaic energy. This Review focuses on recent advances in molecular design and technological aspects of metal-free organic dyes for applications in dye-sensitized solar cells. Special attention has been paid to the design principles of these dyes and on the effect of various electrolyte systems. Cosensitization, an emerging technique to extend the absorption range, is also discussed as a way to improve the performance of the device. In addition, we report on inverted dyes for photocathodes, which constitutes a relatively new approach for the production of tandem cells. Special consideration has been paid to the correlation between the molecular structure and physical properties to their performance in DSSCs.

  2. Detection methods and clinical significance of free peritoneal tumor cells found during colorectal cancer surgery

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Simone; Sibio; Cristina; Fiorani; Carmine; Stolfi; Andrea; Divizia; Roberto; Pezzuto; Fabrizio; Montagnese; Giulia; Bagaglini; Paolo; Sammartino; Giuseppe; Sigismondo; Sica


    Peritoneal washing is now part of the standard clinical practice in several abdominal and pelvic neoplasias. However, in colorectal cancer surgery, intra-peritoneal free cancer cells(IFCC) presence is not routinely investigated and their prognostic meaning is still unclear. When peritoneal washing results are positive for the presence of IFCC a worse outcome is usually expected in these colorectal cancer operated patients, but it what is not clear is whether it is associated with an increased risk of local recurrence. It is authors’ belief that one of the main reasons why IFCC are not researched as integral part of the routine staging system for colon cancer is that there still isn’t a diagnostic or detection method with enough sensibility and specificity. However, the potential clinical implications of a routine research for the presence IFCC in colon neoplasias are enormous: not only to obtain a more accurate clinical staging but also to offer different therapy protocols, based on the presence of IFCC. Based on this, adjuvant chemotherapy could be offered to those patients found to be positive for IFCC; also, protocols of proactive intraperitoneal chemotherapy could be applied. Although presence of IFCC appears to have a valid prognostic significance, further studies are needed to standardize detection and examination procedures, to determine if there are and which are the stages more likely to benefit from routine search for IFCC.

  3. Cholesterol: A modulator of the phagocyte NADPH oxidase activity - A cell-free study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rawand Masoud


    Full Text Available The NADPH oxidase Nox2, a multi-subunit enzyme complex comprising membrane and cytosolic proteins, catalyzes a very intense production of superoxide ions O2•−, which are transformed into other reactive oxygen species (ROS. In vitro, it has to be activated by addition of amphiphiles like arachidonic acid (AA. It has been shown that the membrane part of phagocyte NADPH oxidase is present in lipid rafts rich in cholesterol. Cholesterol plays a significant role in the development of cardio-vascular diseases that are always accompanied by oxidative stress. Our aim was to investigate the influence of cholesterol on the activation process of NADPH oxidase. Our results clearly show that, in a cell-free system, cholesterol is not an efficient activator of NADPH oxidase like arachidonic acid (AA, however it triggers a basal low superoxide production at concentrations similar to what found in neutrophile. A higher concentration, if present during the assembly process of the enzyme, has an inhibitory role on the production of O2•−. Added cholesterol acts on both cytosolic and membrane components, leading to imperfect assembly and decreasing the affinity of cytosolic subunits to the membrane ones. Added to the cytosolic proteins, it retains their conformations but still allows some conformational change induced by AA addition, indispensable to activation of NADPH oxidase.

  4. A novel self-powered and sensitive label-free DNA biosensor in microbial fuel cell. (United States)

    Asghary, Maryam; Raoof, Jahan Bakhsh; Rahimnejad, Mostafa; Ojani, Reza


    In this work, a novel self-powered, sensitive, low-cost, and label-free DNA biosensor is reported by applying a two-chambered microbial fuel cell (MFC) as a power supply. A graphite electrode and an Au nanoparticles modified graphite electrode (AuNP/graphite electrode) were used as anode and cathode in the MFC system, respectively. The active biocatalyst in the anodic chamber was a mixed culture of microorganisms. The sensing element of the biosensor was fabricated by the well-known Au-thiol binding the ssDNA probe on the surface of an AuNP/graphite cathode. Electrons produced by microorganisms were transported from the anode to the cathode through an external circuit, which could be detected by the terminal multi-meter detector. The difference between power densities of the ssDNA probe modified cathode in the absence and presence of complementary sequence served as the detection signal of the DNA hybridization with detection limit of 3.1nM. Thereafter, this biosensor was employed for diagnosis and determination of complementary sequence in a human serum sample. The hybridization specificity studies further revealed that the developed DNA biosensor could distinguish fully complementary sequences from one-base mismatched and non-complementary sequences.

  5. Biological Synthesis of Silver Nanoparticles by Cell-Free Extract of Spirulina platensis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gaurav Sharma


    Full Text Available The present study explores biological synthesis of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs using the cell-free extract of Spirulina platensis. Biosynthesised AgNPs were characterised by UV-Vis spectroscopy, SEM, TEM, and FTIR analysis and finally evaluated for antibacterial activity. Extracellular synthesis using aqueous extract of S. platensis showed the formation of well scattered, highly stable, spherical AgNPs with an average size of 30–50 nm. The size and morphology of the nanoparticles were confirmed by SEM and TEM analysis. FTIR and UV-Vis spectra showed that biomolecules, proteins and peptides, are mainly responsible for the formation and stabilisation of AgNPs. Furthermore, the synthesised nanoparticles exhibited high antibacterial activity against pathogenic Gram-negative, that is, Escherichia coli, MTCC-9721; Proteus vulgaris, MTCC-7299; Klebsiella pneumoniae, MTCC-9751, and Gram-positive, that is, Staphylococcus aureus, MTCC-9542; S. epidermidis, MTCC-2639; Bacillus cereus, MTCC-9017, bacteria. The AgNPs had shown maximum zone of inhibition (ZOI that is 31.3±1.11 in P. vulgaris. Use of such a microalgal system provides a simple, cost-effective alternative template for the biosynthesis of nanomaterials of silver in a large scale that could be of great use in biomedical applications.

  6. Substrate replenishment and byproduct removal improve yeast cell-free protein synthesis. (United States)

    Schoborg, Jennifer A; Hodgman, C Eric; Anderson, Mark J; Jewett, Michael C


    Cell-free protein synthesis (CFPS) platforms are now considered a powerful tool for synthesizing a variety of proteins at scales from pL to 100 L with accelerated process development pipelines. We previously reported the advancement of a novel yeast-based CFPS platform. Here, we studied factors that cause termination of yeast CFPS batch reactions. Specifically, we characterized the substrate and byproduct concentrations in batch, fed-batch, and semi-continuous reaction formats through high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and chemical assays. We discovered that creatine phosphate, the secondary energy substrate, and nucleoside triphosphates were rapidly degraded during batch CFPS, causing a significant drop in the reaction's energy charge (E.C.) and eventual termination of protein synthesis. As a consequence of consuming creatine phosphate, inorganic phosphate accumulated as a toxic byproduct. Additionally, we measured amino acid concentrations and found that aspartic acid was rapidly consumed. By adopting a semi-continuous reaction format, where passive diffusion enables substrate replenishment and byproduct removal, we achieved over a 70% increase in active superfolder green fluorescent protein (sfGFP) as compared with the batch system. This study identifies targets for the future improvement of the batch yeast CFPS reaction. Moreover, it outlines a detailed, generalized method to characterize and improve other CFPS platforms.

  7. Cell detachment and label-free cell sorting using modulated surface acoustic waves (SAW) in droplet-based microfluidics

    CERN Document Server

    Bussonnière, Adrien; Baudoin, Michael; Bou-Matar, Olivier; Grandbois, Michel; Charette, Paul; Renaudin, Alan


    We present a droplet-based surface acoustic wave (SAW) system designed to viably detach biological cells from a surface and sort cell types based on differences in adhesion strength (adhesion contrast), without the need to label cells with molecular markers. The system uses modulated SAW to generate pulsatile flows in the droplets and efficiently detach the cells, thereby minimizing SAW excitation power and exposure time. As a proof-of-principle, the system is shown to efficiently sort HEK 293 from A7r5 cells based on adhesion contrast. Results are obtained in minutes with sorting purity and efficiency reaching 97 % and 95 %, respectively.

  8. Significance of Cell-Free Epstein-Barr Virus DNA in Monitoring Prognosis of Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    SurmeiCao; HuaqingMin; JinsongGao; MinghuongHong; XibinXiao; ChangqingZhong; XiaodongLiu; AilonZhong; XiangGuo


    OBJECTIVE It has been reported that cell-free Epstein-Barr virus (EBVDNA) in plasma was useful in diagnosing and monitoring nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC). The current study was designed to evaluate the significance of EBV-DNA in monitoring the prognosis of nasopharyngeal carcinoma and comparing its significance with that of plasma VCA/IgA and EA/IgA levels. METHODS EBV-DNA, VCA/IgA, and EA/IgA levels in plasma were determined in NPC patients with different prognosis after radiotherapy, including 30 distant metastatic patients, 22 local recurrence patients and 24 individuals with remission who had been followed-up for more than 2 years after treatment. EBV-DNA was determined using a real-time quantitative PCR system, and levels of VCA/IgA and EA/IgA were measured using standard immunofluorescence. In a cohort study, the indexes were determined after different radiation periods for the 20 new cases of nasopharyngeal carcinoma. RESULTS The median plasma EBV-DNA concentration was 135,100 copies/ml (interquartile range: 5,525-1,003 750)in metastatic group, 20,500 copies/ml (interquartile range: 0-58,500) in the local recurrence group and 0 copies/ml (interquartile range: 0-0) in the continuous remission group (P<0.05). The levels of VCA/IgA and EA/IgA showed no significant differences among the different groups. The high level of EBV-DNA concentration in the metastatic group was more than that in the local recurrence group. A level of 1,000,000 copies/ml of EBV DNA was an indication of distant metastasis of the NPC patients with a sensitivity of 27.3%. However, the sensitivity was 0 in the local recurrence group. For the 20 new patients, EBV-DNA concentration gradually decreased during the radiation period. Before radiation there were 32,050 copies/ml (interquartile range: 3,880-317,750), 0 copies/ml (interquartile range: 0-14 375) after a 40 Gy radiation dose and 0 copies/ml (interquartile range: 0-2940)after the radiation was finished (P<0.05). However, the levels of

  9. Admission Cell Free DNA as a Prognostic Factor in Burns: Quantification by Use of a Direct Rapid Fluorometric Technique

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yaron Shoham


    Full Text Available Background. Despite great advances in the treatment of burn patients, useful prognostic markers are sparse. During the past years there has been increasing interest in circulating plasma cell free DNA as a potential marker for tissue injury. We have developed a rapid direct fluorescent assay for cell free DNA quantification that allows obtaining accurate, fast, and inexpensive measurements. Objective. To use this technique for measuring plasma cell free DNA levels in burn patients and to further explore the use of cell free DNA as a potential marker of patient outcome in burns. Methods. Cell free DNA levels obtained from 14 burn victims within 6 hours of injury and 14 healthy controls were quantified by a direct rapid fluorometric assay. Results. Patient admission cell free DNA levels were significantly elevated compared with that of controls (1797 ± 1523 ng/mL versus 374 ± 245 ng/mL, P=0.004. There are statistically significant correlations between cell free DNA admission levels and burn degree (Spearman’s correlation = 0.78, P=0.001, total body surface area (Spearman’s correlation = 0.61, P=0.02, and total burn volume (Spearman’s correlation = 0.64, P=0.014. Conclusions. Admission cell free DNA levels can serve as a prognostic factor in burns and future routine use can be made possible by use of our direct rapid fluorometric assay.

  10. Improved site-specific recombinase-based method to produce selectable marker- and vector-backbone-free transgenic cells (United States)

    Yu, Yuan; Tong, Qi; Li, Zhongxia; Tian, Jinhai; Wang, Yizhi; Su, Feng; Wang, Yongsheng; Liu, Jun; Zhang, Yong


    PhiC31 integrase-mediated gene delivery has been extensively used in gene therapy and animal transgenesis. However, random integration events are observed in phiC31-mediated integration in different types of mammalian cells; as a result, the efficiencies of pseudo attP site integration and evaluation of site-specific integration are compromised. To improve this system, we used an attB-TK fusion gene as a negative selection marker, thereby eliminating random integration during phiC31-mediated transfection. We also excised the selection system and plasmid bacterial backbone by using two other site-specific recombinases, Cre and Dre. Thus, we generated clean transgenic bovine fetal fibroblast cells free of selectable marker and plasmid bacterial backbone. These clean cells were used as donor nuclei for somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT), indicating a similar developmental competence of SCNT embryos to that of non-transgenic cells. Therefore, the present gene delivery system facilitated the development of gene therapy and agricultural biotechnology.

  11. Protective effect of aqueous extract from Spirulina platensis against cell death induced by free radicals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Radhakrishnan Ammu


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Spirulina is a commercial alga well known to contain various antioxidants, especially phycocyanin. Apart from being sold as a nutraceutical, Spirulina is incorporated as a functional ingredient in food products and beverages. Most of the previous reports on antioxidant activity of Spirulina were based on chemical rather than cell-based assays. The primary objective of this study was to assess the antioxidant activity of aqueous extract from Spirulina based on its protective effect against cell death induced by free radicals. Methods The antioxidant activity of the cold water extract from food-grade Spirulina platensis was assessed using both chemical and cell-based assays. In the cell-based assay, mouse fibroblast cells (3T3 cells were incubated for 1 h in medium containing aqueous extract of Spirulina or vitamin C (positive control at 25, 125 and 250 μg/mL before the addition of 50 μM 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH or 3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulfonic acid (ABTS. The cells were incubated for another 24 h before being assessed for cell death due to apoptosis using the Cell Death Detection ELISA Kit. Spectrophotometric assays based on DPPH and ABTS were also used to assess the antioxidant activity of the extract compared to vitamin C and vitamin E (positive controls. Results Spirulina extract did not cause cytotoxic effect on 3T3 cells within the range of concentrations tested (0 - 250 μg/mL. The extract reduced significantly (p Conclusions The results showed that aqueous extract of Spirulina has a protective effect against apoptotic cell death due to free radicals. The potential application of incorporating Spirulina into food products and beverages to enhance their antioxidant capacity is worth exploring.

  12. Asynchronous Free-Space Optical CDMA Communications System for Last-mile Access Network

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jurado-Navas, Antonio; Raddo, Thiago R.; Sanches, Anderson L.


    We propose a new hybrid asynchronous OCDMA-FSO communications system for access network solutions. New ABER expressions are derived under gamma-gamma scintillation channels, where all users can surprisingly achieve error-free transmissions when FEC is employed....

  13. Generation of integration-free induced pluripotent stem cells from a patient with Familial Mediterranean Fever (FMF

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kerem Fidan


    Full Text Available Fibroblasts from a Familial Mediterranean Fever (FMF patient were reprogrammed with episomal vectors by using the Neon Transfection System for the generation of integration-free induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs. The resulting iPSC line was characterized to determine the expression of pluripotency markers, proper differentiation into three germ layers, the presence of normal chromosomal structures as well as the lack of genomic integration. A homozygous missense mutation in the MEFV gene (p.Met694Val, which lead to typical FMF phenotype, was shown to be present in the generated iPSC line.

  14. Contagious bank failures in a free banking system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aghion, P.; Bolton, P.; Dewatripont, M.


    This paper develops a model of an unregulated banking system based around a private clearing house arrangement. Whilst such a system may dominate one with a public safety net in reducing moral hazard in lending and therefore the scope for individual bank insolvency, it also increases the likelihood

  15. Rapid and label-free separation of Burkitt's lymphoma cells from red blood cells by optically-induced electrokinetics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenfeng Liang

    Full Text Available Early stage detection of lymphoma cells is invaluable for providing reliable prognosis to patients. However, the purity of lymphoma cells in extracted samples from human patients' marrow is typically low. To address this issue, we report here our work on using optically-induced dielectrophoresis (ODEP force to rapidly purify Raji cells' (a type of Burkitt's lymphoma cell sample from red blood cells (RBCs with a label-free process. This method utilizes dynamically moving virtual electrodes to induce negative ODEP force of varying magnitudes on the Raji cells and RBCs in an optically-induced electrokinetics (OEK chip. Polarization models for the two types of cells that reflect their discriminate electrical properties were established. Then, the cells' differential velocities caused by a specific ODEP force field were obtained by a finite element simulation model, thereby established the theoretical basis that the two types of cells could be separated using an ODEP force field. To ensure that the ODEP force dominated the separation process, a comparison of the ODEP force with other significant electrokinetics forces was conducted using numerical results. Furthermore, the performance of the ODEP-based approach for separating Raji cells from RBCs was experimentally investigated. The results showed that these two types of cells, with different concentration ratios, could be separated rapidly using externally-applied electrical field at a driven frequency of 50 kHz at 20 Vpp. In addition, we have found that in order to facilitate ODEP-based cell separation, Raji cells' adhesion to the OEK chip's substrate should be minimized. This paper also presents our experimental results of finding the appropriate bovine serum albumin concentration in an isotonic solution to reduce cell adhesion, while maintaining suitable medium conductivity for electrokinetics-based cell separation. In short, we have demonstrated that OEK technology could be a promising tool for

  16. Review of free software tools for image analysis of fluorescence cell micrographs. (United States)

    Wiesmann, V; Franz, D; Held, C; Münzenmayer, C; Palmisano, R; Wittenberg, T


    An increasing number of free software tools have been made available for the evaluation of fluorescence cell micrographs. The main users are biologists and related life scientists with no or little knowledge of image processing. In this review, we give an overview of available tools and guidelines about which tools the users should use to segment fluorescence micrographs. We selected 15 free tools and divided them into stand-alone, Matlab-based, ImageJ-based, free demo versions of commercial tools and data sharing tools. The review consists of two parts: First, we developed a criteria catalogue and rated the tools regarding structural requirements, functionality (flexibility, segmentation and image processing filters) and usability (documentation, data management, usability and visualization). Second, we performed an image processing case study with four representative fluorescence micrograph segmentation tasks with figure-ground and cell separation. The tools display a wide range of functionality and usability. In the image processing case study, we were able to perform figure-ground separation in all micrographs using mainly thresholding. Cell separation was not possible with most of the tools, because cell separation methods are provided only by a subset of the tools and are difficult to parametrize and to use. Most important is that the usability matches the functionality of a tool. To be usable, specialized tools with less functionality need to fulfill less usability criteria, whereas multipurpose tools need a well-structured menu and intuitive graphical user interface.

  17. The Integration and Functional Evaluation of Rabbit Pacing Cells Transplanted into the Left Ventricular Free Wall

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhihui Zhang, Zhiyuan Song, Jun Cheng, Yaoming Nong, Lu Wei, Changhai Zhang


    Full Text Available To evaluate the feasibility of cell transplantation to treat bradyarrhythmia, we analyzed the in vivo integration and pacing function after transplantation of mHCN4-modified rabbit bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs into the rabbit left ventricle free wall epicardium. In our investigation, we injected MSCs transduced with or without mHCN4 into the rabbit left ventricle free wall epicardium. Chemical ablation of the sinoatrial node was performed and bilateral vagus nerves were sequentially stimulated to observe premature left ventricular contraction or left ventricular rhythm. We found that the mHCN4-transduced MSC group had a significantly higher ventricular rate and a shorter QRS duration than that of the control and EGFP group. Furthermore, the mHCN4-transduced MSCs, but not the control cells, gradually adapted long-spindle morphology and became indistinguishable from adjacent ventricle myocytes. The modified MSCs showed pacing function approximately 1 week after transplantation and persisted at least 4 weeks after transplantation. In conclusion, a bradyarrhythmia model can be successfully established by chemical ablation of the sinoatrial node and sequential bilateral vagus nerve stimulation. The mHCN4-modified rabbit MSCs displayed evident dynamic morphology changes after being transplanted into rabbit left ventricle free wall epicardium. Our studies may provide a promising strategy of using modified stem cell transplantation to treat bradyarrhythmia.

  18. Improved serum- and feeder-free culture of mouse germline stem cells. (United States)

    Kanatsu-Shinohara, Mito; Ogonuki, Narumi; Matoba, Shogo; Morimoto, Hiroko; Ogura, Atsuo; Shinohara, Takashi


    Spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) undergo self-renewal division, which can be recapitulated in vitro. Attempts to establish serum-free culture conditions for SSCs have met with limited success. Although we previously reported that SSCs can be cultured without serum on laminin-coated plates, the growth rate and SSC concentration were relatively low, which made it inefficient for culturing large numbers of SSCs. In this study, we report on a novel culture medium that showed improved SSC maintenance. We used Iscove modified Dulbecco medium, supplemented with lipid mixture, fetuin, and knockout serum replacement. In the presence of glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and fibroblast growth factor 2 (FGF2), SSCs cultured on laminin-coated plates could proliferate for more than 5 mo and maintained normal karyotype and androgenetic DNA methylation patterns in imprinted genes. Germ cell transplantation showed that SSCs in the serum-free medium proliferated more actively than those in the serum-supplemented medium and that the frequency of SSCs was comparable between the two culture media. Cultured cells underwent germline transmission. Development of a new serum- and feeder-free culture method for SSCs will facilitate studies into the effects of microenvironments on self-renewal and will stimulate further improvements to derive SSC cultures from different animal species.

  19. Hydrogen exchange during cell-free incorporation of deuterated amino acids and an approach to its inhibition

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tonelli, Marco; Singarapu, Kiran K. [University of Wisconsin-Madison, National Magnetic Resonance Facility at Madison (NMRFAM), Department of Biochemistry (United States); Makino, Shin-ichi; Sahu, Sarata C.; Matsubara, Yuko [University of Wisconsin-Madison, Center for Eukaryotic Structural Genomics (CESG), Department of Biochemistry (United States); Endo, Yaeta [Ehime University, Cell-Free Science and Technology Research Center (Japan); Kainosho, Masatsune [Tokyo Metropolitan University, Center for Priority Areas (Japan); Markley, John L., E-mail: [University of Wisconsin-Madison, National Magnetic Resonance Facility at Madison (NMRFAM), Department of Biochemistry (United States)


    Perdeuteration, selective deuteration, and stereo array isotope labeling (SAIL) are valuable strategies for NMR studies of larger proteins and membrane proteins. To minimize scrambling of the label, it is best to use cell-free methods to prepare selectively labeled proteins. However, when proteins are prepared from deuterated amino acids by cell-free translation in H{sub 2}O, exchange reactions can lead to contamination of {sup 2}H sites by {sup 1}H from the solvent. Examination of a sample of SAIL-chlorella ubiquitin prepared by Escherichia coli cell-free synthesis revealed that exchange had occurred at several residues (mainly at Gly, Ala, Asp, Asn, Glu, and Gln). We present results from a study aimed at identifying the exchanging sites and level of exchange and at testing a strategy for minimizing {sup 1}H contamination during wheat germ cell-free translation of proteins produced from deuterated amino acids by adding known inhibitors of transaminases (1 mM aminooxyacetic acid) and glutamate synthetase (0.1 mM l-methionine sulfoximine). By using a wheat germ cell-free expression system, we produced [U-{sup 2}H, {sup 15}N]-chlorella ubiquitin without and with added inhibitors, and [U-{sup 15}N]-chlorella ubiquitin as a reference to determine the extent of deuterium incorporation. We also prepared a sample of [U-{sup 13}C, {sup 15}N]-chlorella ubiquitin, for use in assigning the sites of exchange. The added inhibitors did not reduce the protein yield and were successful in blocking hydrogen exchange at C{sup {alpha}} sites, with the exception of Gly, and at C{sup {beta}} sites of Ala. We discovered, in addition, that partial exchange occurred with or without the inhibitors at certain side-chain methyl and methylene groups: Asn-H{sup {beta}}, Asp-H{sup {beta}}, Gln-H{sup {gamma}}, Glu-H{sup {gamma}}, and Lys-H{sup {epsilon}}. The side-chain labeling pattern, in particular the mixed chiral labeling resulting from partial exchange at certain sites, should be of

  20. Protection of Acanthopanax Senticosus Saponin on Free Radical Injury Induced Aging of Nerve Cell

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    潘永进; 顾永健; 顾小苏


    Objective: To study the effect of Acanthopanax senticosus saponin (ASS) on free radical injury induced neuron aging. Methods: On day 7 of fetal mice, cortical neuron primary passage cultures were divided into the normal control group, model group and ASS groups. The model group using free radical (FeSO4 plus H2O2) injury mode prepared in vivo cultured ICR mice cortical neuron aging model; ASS groups: 24 hrs before and after treated with H2O2 and FeSO4, different concentration of ASS was added, according to biochemical parameters such as lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), superoxide dismutase (SOD) and malondialdehyde (MDA) etc. and histomorphologic change to observe the protection of ASS on aging neurons. Results: The LDH, SOD, MDA of the model group were compared with the normal group, P<0.01; ASS groups added 1.25 mg/100 ml, 2.5 mg/100 ml, 5 mg/100 ml concentration of ASS, their LDH, SOD, MDA compared with the model group P<0.05-0.01, the difference was significant. In medicated groups the SOD activity of oxidization injured nerve cells obviously elevated, LDH activity and MDA content apparently lowered. Microscope and scanning electron microscopic observation showed that supplemented with ASS to protect the nerve cell injury abated, part of the cellular structure tended to normalize. Conclusion: ASS could act against free radical toxic effect, increase the anti-oxidase activity, strengthen the protection of neuron cells. It is assumed that the effect against nerve cell aging was possibly through scavenging oxygen free radical, strengthening the stability of cell membrane, thus delaying the development of aging.

  1. Study of surface cell Madelung constant and surface free energy of nanosized crystal grain

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhang Wei-Jia; Wang Tian-Min; Rong Ai-Lun; Cui Min


    Surface cell Madelung constant is firstly defined for calculating the surface free energy of nanosized crystal grains,which explains the physical performance of small crystals and may be greatly beneficial to the analysis of surface states and the study of the dynamics of crystal nucleation and growth.A new approximative expression of the surface energy and relevant thermodynamic data are used in this calculation.New formula and computing method for calculating the Madelung constant α of any complex crystals are proposed,and the surface free energies and surface electrostatic energies of nanosized crystal grains and the Madelung constant of some complex crystals are theoretically calculated in this paper.The surface free energy of nanosized-crystal-grain TiO2 and the surface electrostatic energy (absolute value) of nanosized-crystal-grain α-A12O3 are found to be the biggest among all the crystal grains including those of other species.

  2. Study of Surface Cell Madelung Constant and Surface Free Energy of Nanosized Crystal Grain

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Wei-Jia; WANG Tian-Min; CUI Min


    Surface cell Madelung constant is firstly defined in calculating surface free energy of nanosized crystal grains, which explains the physical performance of small crystals and may be great benefit to make surface analysis and study dynamics of crystal nucleus growth. A new ap- proximative expression of surface energy and relevant thermodynamic data was used in this cal- culation. A new formula and computing method for calculating the Madelung constant α of any complex crystals is proposed, and surface free energies and surface electrostatic energies of nano- sized crystal grains as well as Madelung constant of some complex crystals are theoretically cal- culated in this paper. The surface free energy of nanosized crystal grain TiO2 and surface elec- trostatic energy(absolute value) of nanosized crystal grain α-Al2O3 are found to be the biggest among other crystal grains.

  3. Inhibition of free radical induced oxidative hemolysis of red blood cells by green tea polyphenols

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    The in vitro oxidative hemolysis of human red blood cells (RBC) was used as a model to study the free radical induced damage of biological membranes and the inhibitory effect of natural antioxidants. The hemolysis was induced by a water-soluble free radical initiator 2,2′-azo(2- asmidinopropane)dihydrochloride (AAPH) and inhibited by the principal polyphenolic components extracted from green tea leaves, i.e. (-)-epicatechin (EC), (-)-epigallocatechin (EGC), (-)-epicat- echin gallate (ECG), (-)-epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and gallic acid (GA). Addition of AAPH at 37°C caused fast hemolysis after a short period of inhibition period, while addition of the green tea polyphenols efficiently suppressed the hemolysis in the activity sequence of EGCG>EGC>ECG≈EC>GA, demonstrating that these green tea polyphenols are effective antioxidants which could protect biological membranes from free radical induced oxidative damage.

  4. Derivative Free Optimization of Complex Systems with the Use of Statistical Machine Learning Models (United States)


    AFRL-AFOSR-VA-TR-2015-0278 DERIVATIVE FREE OPTIMIZATION OF COMPLEX SYSTEMS WITH THE USE OF STATISTICAL MACHINE LEARNING MODELS Katya Scheinberg...COMPLEX SYSTEMS WITH THE USE OF STATISTICAL MACHINE LEARNING MODELS 5a.  CONTRACT NUMBER 5b.  GRANT NUMBER FA9550-11-1-0239 5c.  PROGRAM ELEMENT...developed, which has been the focus of our research. 15. SUBJECT TERMS optimization, Derivative-Free Optimization, Statistical Machine Learning 16. SECURITY

  5. Label-free single cell analysis with a chip-based impedance flow cytometer (United States)

    Pierzchalski, Arkadiusz; Hebeisen, Monika; Mittag, Anja; Di Berardino, Marco; Tarnok, Attila


    For description of cellular phenotypes and physiological states new developments are needed. Axetris' impedance flow cytometer (IFC) (Leister) is a new promising label-free alternative to fluorescence-based flow cytometry (FCM). IFC measures single cells at various frequencies simultaneously. The frequencies used for signal acquisition range from 0.1 to 20 MHz. The impedance signal provides information about cell volume (4 MHz) and membrane capacitance (1-4 MHz). Our data indicate that IFC can be a valuable alternative to conventional FCM for various applications in the field of cell death and physiology. The work will be extended to address further potential applications of IFC in biotechnology and biomedical cell analysis, as well as in cell sorting.

  6. Acaricidal activities of whole cell suspension, cell-free supernatant,and crude cell extract of Xenorhabdus stokiae against mushroom mite (Luciaphorus sp.)

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Prapassom BUSSAMAN; Chirayu SA-UTH; Paweena RATTANAS ENA; Angsumarn CHANDRAPATYA


    Xenorhabdus bacterium has been used as a biological control agent against Luciaphorus sp.,a mushroom mite endemic in Thailand.To develop an effective formulation of Xenorhabdus stokiae,treatments using different parts of X.stokiae isolate PB09 culture,including whole cell suspension,cell-free supernatant,and crude cell extract,were performed.The results show that different parts ofX.stokiae isolate PB09 culture could induce variable effects on mite mortality and fecundity.Application with cell-free supernatant of X.stokiae culture resulted in both the highest mite mortality rate [(89.00+3.60)%] and the lowest mite fecundity [(41.33+23.69) eggs/gravid female].Whole cell suspension of X.stokiae isolate PB09 culture was found to be slightly less effective than its cell-free supernatant,suggesting that X.stokiae was more likely to release its metabolites with acaricidal activities to the surrounding culture media.Crude cell extract of X.stokiae was not effective against mites.Cell-free supernatant of X.stokiae isolate PB09 was the most effective biological control agent and it could be conveniently used in future formulations instead of live bacteria.

  7. Lipid nanocarriers based on natural oils with high activity against oxygen free radicals and tumor cell proliferation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lacatusu, I.; Badea, N.; Badea, G.; Oprea, O. [University Politehnica of Bucharest, Faculty of Applied Chemistry and Materials Science, Polizu Street No 1, 011061 Bucharest (Romania); Mihaila, M.A. [Institute of Virusology “Stefan S. Nicolau”, Center of Immunology, Bravu Road, No. 285, 030304 Bucharest (Romania); Kaya, D.A. [Department of Field Crops, Faculty of Agriculture, Mustafa Kemal University, 31030 Antakya, Hatay (Turkey); Stan, R., E-mail: [University Politehnica of Bucharest, Faculty of Applied Chemistry and Materials Science, Polizu Street No 1, 011061 Bucharest (Romania); Meghea, A. [University Politehnica of Bucharest, Faculty of Applied Chemistry and Materials Science, Polizu Street No 1, 011061 Bucharest (Romania)


    The development of nano-dosage forms of phytochemicals represents a significant progress of the scientific approach in the biomedical research. The aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness of lipid nanocarriers based on natural oils (grape seed oil, fish oil and laurel leaf oil) in counteracting free radicals and combating certain tumor cells. No drug was encapsulated in the nanocarriers. The cytotoxic effect exerted by bioactive nanocarriers against two tumor cells, MDA-MB 231 and HeLa cell lines, and two normal cells, L929 and B16 cell lines, was measured using the MTT assay, while oxidative damage was assessed by measuring the total antioxidant activity using chemiluminescence analysis. The best performance was obtained for nanocarriers based on an association of grape seed and laurel leaf oils, with a capacity to scavenge about 98% oxygen free radicals. A dose of nanocarriers of 5 mg·mL{sup −1} has led to a drastic decrease in tumor cell proliferation even in the absence of an antitumor drug (e.g. about 50% viability for MDA-MB 231 cell line and 60% viability for HeLa cell line). A comparative survival profile of normal and tumor cells, which were exposed to an effective dose of 2.5 mg·mL{sup −1} lipid nanocarriers, has revealed a death rate of 20% for normal B16 cells and of 40% death rate for MDA-MB 231 and HeLa tumor cells. The results in this study imply that lipid nanocarriers based on grape seed oil in association with laurel leaf oil could be a candidate to reduce the delivery system toxicity and may significantly improve the therapeutic efficacy of antitumor drugs in clinical applications. - Highlights: • Functional lipid nanocarriers with unique features and broad spectrum effectiveness • Lipid nanocarriers based on laureal leaf oil (LLO) and grape seed oil (GSO) • Antioxidant activity has reached 98% for nanocarriers containing 25% GSO and 2% LLO. • LLO exerts a significant cytotoxic effect against HeLa and MDA-MB 231 tumor

  8. The impact of residential demand response on the costs of a fossil-free system reserve

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Katz, Jonas; Balyk, Olexandr; Hevia Koch, Pablo Alejandro


    to contribute to determining the least-cost options for regulation in a fossil-free power system. We extend an existing energy system model with demand response and reserve modelling and analyse the impact for the case of Denmark in 2035 to reflect a system based on renewable resources for electricity......In order to achieve a better understanding of the system value of residential demand response, we study the potential impact of flexible demand on the costs of system reserves in a fossil-free electricity supply. Comparing these costs with traditional means of regulation our analysis aims...

  9. Cyclic Heating-Annealing and Boltzmann Distribution of Free Energies in a Spin-Glass System

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHOU Hai-Jun


    Ergodicity of a spin-glass is broken at low temperatures; the system is trapped in one of many ergodic configurational domains. Transitions between different ergodic domains are achievable through a heating-annealing procedure. If this experiment is repeated infinite times, all ergodic configurational domains will be visited with frequences that decreasing exponentially with their free energies. The mean free energy density of a spin-glass system on a random graph is calculated based on this free energy Boltzmann distribution in the present work, by means of the cavity approach.

  10. Serum-Free Media and the Immunoregulatory Properties of Mesenchymal Stem Cells In Vivo and In Vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mei Wu


    Full Text Available Background: Mesenchymal stem cells are capable of self-renewal and multi-lineage differentiation. They are used extensively to treat several diseases. Traditionally, mesenchymal stem cells are cultured in serum-containing media, typically supplemented with fetal bovine serum (FBS. However, the variability of FBS is likely to skew experimental results. Although serum-free media used to expand mesenchymal stem cells has facilitated remarkable achievements, immunomodulation of these cells in under serum-free conditions is poorly understood. We hypothesized that mesenchymal stem cells expanded in serum-free media will retain powerful immunoregulatory functions in vitro and in vivo. Design and Methods: Immunosuppressive activity and the immunomodulatory cytokines produced by mesenchymal stem cells in serum-free media were characterized in vitro. Immunomodulation by serum-free mesenchymal stem cell expansion in monocrotaline-induced pulmonary hypertension was explored in vivo. Results: Similar to cells in serum-containing media, mesenchymal stem cells expanded in serum-free media inhibited proliferation and apoptosis of CD4+T cells. They also exhibited strong immunosuppressive activities and secreted high levels of immunomodulatory cytokines such as PGE2, IDO1, COX2, IL-6, and IL-1β, but not HGF. On the other hand, growth of mesenchymal stem cells in serum-free media attenuated pulmonary vascular remodeling and inhibited mRNA expression of proinflammatory cytokines TNF-α, IFN-γ, IL-6, IL-1β, and IL-18. Conclusions: Mesenchymal stem cells in serum-free media maintained powerful immunomodulatory function in vitro and in vivo; serum-free media may replace serum-containing media for basic research and clinical applications.

  11. Analysis of free energy and entropy changes for half-cell reactions (United States)

    Lampinen, Markku J.; Fomino, Marina


    A comprehensive study of different entropy scales used in chemical thermodynamics is presented, and a semi-absolute entropy scale is introduced, by which problems involving noncharged and charge species can be considered correctly and further, the heat generation of half-cell reactions can be calculated. In this context, the entropy of an electron in a metal is derived. The entropy changes for electrode reactions are calculated, and the heat distribution among the electrodes of the cell is solved. The correlation of the zeros of the energy scales for H2(g), H'(aq), and e(exp MIN) (vacuum) is studied, and the value of chemical potential of electron in metal and gas phase is derived. An estimation for the free-enthalpy changes for the half-cell reaction H2(g) yields 2H(exp PLU)(aq) + 2e(exp MIN) (Pt electrode) is presented. The Galvanic potential differences for half cells are calculated, and tables of Delta H, Delta S, and Delta H are presented. An example of the use of half-cell reaction entropies and free-energy changes for a fuel cell is presented. With this method we can establish how the total heat generated in the fuel cell is distributed between the cathode and the anode of the cell. This method gives new basic information on electrochemical cells, which can be applied to mathematical models of single electrodes. The physical meaning of Delta G for half-cell reactions is illustrated by Poynting's vector.

  12. Advances in Derivative-Free State Estimation for Nonlinear Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nørgaard, Magnus; Poulsen, Niels Kjølstad; Ravn, Ole

    In this paper we show that it involves considerable advantages to use polynomial approximations obtained with an interpolation formula for derivation of state estimators for nonlinear systems. The estimators become more accurate than estimators based on Taylor approximations, and yet...

  13. Label-free recognition of drug resistance via impedimetric screening of breast cancer cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bilge Eker

    Full Text Available We present a novel study on label-free recognition and distinction of drug resistant breast cancer cells (MCF-7 DOX from their parental cells (MCF-7 WT via impedimetric measurements. Drug resistant cells exhibited significant differences in their dielectric properties compared to wild-type cells, exerting much higher extracellular resistance (Rextra . Immunostaining revealed that MCF-7 DOX cells gained a much denser F-actin network upon acquiring drug resistance indicating that remodeling of actin cytoskeleton is probably the reason behind higher Rextra , providing stronger cell architecture. Moreover, having exposed both cell types to doxorubicin, we were able to distinguish these two phenotypes based on their substantially different drug response. Interestingly, impedimetric measurements identified a concentration-dependent and reversible increase in cell stiffness in the presence of low non-lethal drug doses. Combined with a profound frequency analysis, these findings enabled distinguishing distinct cellular responses during drug exposure within four concentration ranges without using any labeling. Overall, this study highlights the possibility to differentiate drug resistant phenotypes from their parental cells and to assess their drug response by using microelectrodes, offering direct, real-time and noninvasive measurements of cell dependent parameters under drug exposure, hence providing a promising step for personalized medicine applications such as evaluation of the disease progress and optimization of the drug treatment of a patient during chemotherapy.

  14. Optimizing cell-free protein expression in CHO: Assessing small molecule mass transfer effects in various reactor configurations. (United States)

    Peñalber-Johnstone, Chariz; Ge, Xudong; Tran, Kevin; Selock, Nicholas; Sardesai, Neha; Gurramkonda, Chandrasekhar; Pilli, Manohar; Tolosa, Michael; Tolosa, Leah; Kostov, Yordan; Frey, Douglas D; Rao, Govind


    Cell-free protein synthesis (CFPS) is an ideal platform for rapid and convenient protein production. However, bioreactor design remains a critical consideration in optimizing protein expression. Using turbo green fluorescent protein (tGFP) as a model, we tracked small molecule components in a Chinese Hamster Ovary (CHO) CFPS system to optimize protein production. Here, three bioreactors in continuous-exchange cell-free (CECF) format were characterized. A GFP optical sensor was built to monitor the product in real-time. Mass transfer of important substrate and by-product components such as nucleoside triphosphates (NTPs), creatine, and inorganic phosphate (Pi) across a 10-kDa MWCO cellulose membrane was calculated. Highest efficiency measured by tGFP yields were found in a microdialysis device configuration; while a negative effect on yield was observed due to limited mass transfer of NTPs in a dialysis cup configuration. In 24-well plate high-throughput CECF format, addition of up to 40 mM creatine phosphate in the system increased yields by up to ∼60% relative to controls. Direct ATP addition, as opposed to creatine phosphate addition, negatively affected the expression. Pi addition of up to 30 mM to the expression significantly reduced yields by over ∼40% relative to controls. Overall, data presented in this report serves as a valuable reference to optimize the CHO CFPS system for next-generation bioprocessing. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  15. Label-Free Imaging of Umbilical Cord Tissue Morphology and Explant-Derived Cells (United States)

    Paesen, Rik; Gyselaers, Wilfried; Stinissen, Piet


    In situ detection of MSCs remains difficult and warrants additional methods to aid with their characterization in vivo. Two-photon confocal laser scanning microscopy (TPM) and second harmonic generation (SHG) could fill this gap. Both techniques enable the detection of cells and extracellular structures, based on intrinsic properties of the specific tissue and intracellular molecules under optical irradiation. TPM imaging and SHG imaging have been used for label-free monitoring of stem cells differentiation, assessment of their behavior in biocompatible scaffolds, and even cell tracking in vivo. In this study, we show that TPM and SHG can accurately depict the umbilical cord architecture and visualize individual cells both in situ and during culture initiation, without the use of exogenously applied labels. In combination with nuclear DNA staining, we observed a variance in fluorescent intensity in the vessel walls. In addition, antibody staining showed differences in Oct4, αSMA, vimentin, and ALDH1A1 expression in situ, indicating functional differences among the umbilical cord cell populations. In future research, marker-free imaging can be of great added value to the current antigen-based staining methods for describing tissue structures and for the identification of progenitor cells in their tissue of origin. PMID:27746820

  16. Label-Free Imaging of Umbilical Cord Tissue Morphology and Explant-Derived Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raf Donders


    Full Text Available In situ detection of MSCs remains difficult and warrants additional methods to aid with their characterization in vivo. Two-photon confocal laser scanning microscopy (TPM and second harmonic generation (SHG could fill this gap. Both techniques enable the detection of cells and extracellular structures, based on intrinsic properties of the specific tissue and intracellular molecules under optical irradiation. TPM imaging and SHG imaging have been used for label-free monitoring of stem cells differentiation, assessment of their behavior in biocompatible scaffolds, and even cell tracking in vivo. In this study, we show that TPM and SHG can accurately depict the umbilical cord architecture and visualize individual cells both in situ and during culture initiation, without the use of exogenously applied labels. In combination with nuclear DNA staining, we observed a variance in fluorescent intensity in the vessel walls. In addition, antibody staining showed differences in Oct4, αSMA, vimentin, and ALDH1A1 expression in situ, indicating functional differences among the umbilical cord cell populations. In future research, marker-free imaging can be of great added value to the current antigen-based staining methods for describing tissue structures and for the identification of progenitor cells in their tissue of origin.

  17. Facilitating Constructive Alignment in Power Systems Engineering Education Using Free and Open-Source Software (United States)

    Vanfretti, L.; Milano, F.


    This paper describes how the use of free and open-source software (FOSS) can facilitate the application of constructive alignment theory in power systems engineering education by enabling the deep learning approach in power system analysis courses. With this aim, this paper describes the authors' approach in using the Power System Analysis Toolbox…

  18. Fully Automated On-Chip Imaging Flow Cytometry System with Disposable Contamination-Free Plastic Re-Cultivation Chip

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomoyuki Kaneko


    Full Text Available We have developed a novel imaging cytometry system using a poly(methyl methacrylate (PMMA based microfluidic chip. The system was contamination-free, because sample suspensions contacted only with a flammable PMMA chip and no other component of the system. The transparency and low-fluorescence of PMMA was suitable for microscopic imaging of cells flowing through microchannels on the chip. Sample particles flowing through microchannels on the chip were discriminated by an image-recognition unit with a high-speed camera in real time at the rate of 200 event/s, e.g., microparticles 2.5 μm and 3.0 μm in diameter were differentiated with an error rate of less than 2%. Desired cells were separated automatically from other cells by electrophoretic or dielectrophoretic force one by one with a separation efficiency of 90%. Cells in suspension with fluorescent dye were separated using the same kind of microfluidic chip. Sample of 5 μL with 1 × 106 particle/mL was processed within 40 min. Separated cells could be cultured on the microfluidic chip without contamination. The whole operation of sample handling was automated using 3D micropipetting system. These results showed that the novel imaging flow cytometry system is practically applicable for biological research and clinical diagnostics.

  19. Discovering free energy basins for macromolecular systems via guided multiscale simulation. (United States)

    Sereda, Yuriy V; Singharoy, Abhishek B; Jarrold, Martin F; Ortoleva, Peter J


    An approach for the automated discovery of low free energy states of macromolecular systems is presented. The method does not involve delineating the entire free energy landscape but proceeds in a sequential free energy minimizing state discovery; i.e., it first discovers one low free energy state and then automatically seeks a distinct neighboring one. These states and the associated ensembles of atomistic configurations are characterized by coarse-grained variables capturing the large-scale structure of the system. A key facet of our approach is the identification of such coarse-grained variables. Evolution of these variables is governed by Langevin dynamics driven by thermal-average forces and mediated by diffusivities, both of which are constructed by an ensemble of short molecular dynamics runs. In the present approach, the thermal-average forces are modified to account for the entropy changes following from our knowledge of the free energy basins already discovered. Such forces guide the system away from the known free energy minima, over free energy barriers, and to a new one. The theory is demonstrated for lactoferrin, known to have multiple energy-minimizing structures. The approach is validated using experimental structures and traditional molecular dynamics. The method can be generalized to enable the interpretation of nanocharacterization data (e.g., ion mobility-mass spectrometry, atomic force microscopy, chemical labeling, and nanopore measurements).

  20. Optical waveguide focusing system with short free-working distance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wang, H.; Groen, F.H.; Pereira, S.F.; Braat, J.J.M.


    In photonics, light usually diffracts in all directions when it emerges from a planar optical waveguide. Besides this fact, in this letter we show that a waveguide with a rectangular cross section can be turned to a focusing system by using three-dimensional self-imaging technique. We obtained a con

  1. Highly stable precious metal-free cathode catalyst for fuel cell application (United States)

    Serov, Alexey; Workman, Michael J.; Artyushkova, Kateryna; Atanassov, Plamen; McCool, Geoffrey; McKinney, Sam; Romero, Henry; Halevi, Barr; Stephenson, Thomas


    A platinum group metal-free (PGM-free) oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) catalyst engineered for stability has been synthesized using the sacrificial support method (SSM). This catalyst was comprehensively characterized by physiochemical analyses and tested for performance and durability in fuel cell membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs). This catalyst, belonging to the family of Fe-N-C materials, is easily scalable and can be manufactured in batches up to 200 g. The fuel cell durability tests were performed in a single cell configuration at realistic operating conditions of 0.65 V, 1.25 atmgauge air, and 90% RH for 100 h. In-depth characterization of surface chemistry and morphology of the catalyst layer before and after durability tests were performed. The failure modes of the PGM-free electrodes were derived from structure-to-property correlations. It is suggested that under constant voltage operation, the performance loss results from degradation of the electrode pore structure, while under carbon corrosion accelerated test protocols the failure mode is catalyst corrosion.

  2. Label-free imaging to study phenotypic behavioural traits of cells in complex co-cultures (United States)

    Suman, Rakesh; Smith, Gabrielle; Hazel, Kathryn E. A.; Kasprowicz, Richard; Coles, Mark; O'Toole, Peter; Chawla, Sangeeta


    Time-lapse imaging is a fundamental tool for studying cellular behaviours, however studies of primary cells in complex co-culture environments often requires fluorescent labelling and significant light exposure that can perturb their natural function over time. Here, we describe ptychographic phase imaging that permits prolonged label-free time-lapse imaging of microglia in the presence of neurons and astrocytes, which better resembles in vivo microenvironments. We demonstrate the use of ptychography as an assay to study the phenotypic behaviour of microglial cells in primary neuronal co-cultures through the addition of cyclosporine A, a potent immune-modulator.

  3. Non-invasive, label-free cell counting and quantitative analysis of adherent cells using digital holography. (United States)

    Mölder, A; Sebesta, M; Gustafsson, M; Gisselson, L; Wingren, A Gjörloff; Alm, K


    Manual cell counting is time consuming and requires a high degree of skill on behalf of the person performing the count. Here we use a technique that utilizes digital holography, allowing label-free and completely non-invasive cell counting directly in cell culture vessels with adherent viable cells. The images produced can provide both quantitative and qualitative phase information from a single hologram. The recently constructed microscope Holomonitor (Phase Holographic Imaging AB, Lund, Sweden) combines the commonly used phase contrast microscope with digital holography, the latter giving us the possibility of achieving quantitative information on cellular shape, area, confluence and optical thickness. This project aimed at determining the accuracy and repeatability of cell counting measurements using digital holography compared to the conventional manual cell counting method using a haemocytometer. The collected data were also used to determine cell size and cellular optical thickness. The results show that digital holography can be used for non-invasive automatic cell counting as precisely as conventional manual cell counting.

  4. Aberration-free FTIR spectroscopic imaging of live cells in microfluidic devices. (United States)

    Chan, K L Andrew; Kazarian, Sergei G


    The label-free, non-destructive chemical analysis offered by FTIR spectroscopic imaging is a very attractive and potentially powerful tool for studies of live biological cells. FTIR imaging of live cells is a challenging task, due to the fact that cells are cultured in an aqueous environment. While the synchrotron facility has proven to be a valuable tool for FTIR microspectroscopic studies of single live cells, we have demonstrated that high quality infrared spectra of single live cells using an ordinary Globar source can also be obtained by adding a pair of lenses to a common transmission liquid cell. The lenses, when placed on the transmission cell window, form pseudo hemispheres which removes the refraction of light and hence improve the imaging and spectral quality of the obtained data. This study demonstrates that infrared spectra of single live cells can be obtained without the focus shifting effect at different wavenumbers, caused by the chromatic aberration. Spectra of the single cells have confirmed that the measured spectral region remains in focus across the whole range, while spectra of the single cells measured without the lenses have shown some erroneous features as a result of the shift of focus. It has also been demonstrated that the addition of lenses can be applied to the imaging of cells in microfabricated devices. We have shown that it was not possible to obtain a focused image of an isolated cell in a droplet of DPBS in oil unless the lenses are applied. The use of the approach described herein allows for well focused images of single cells in DPBS droplets to be obtained.

  5. Label-free optical detection of cells grown in 3D silicon microstructures. (United States)

    Merlo, Sabina; Carpignano, Francesca; Silva, Gloria; Aredia, Francesca; Scovassi, A Ivana; Mazzini, Giuliano; Surdo, Salvatore; Barillaro, Giuseppe


    We demonstrate high aspect-ratio photonic crystals that could serve as three-dimensional (3D) microincubators for cell culture and also provide label-free optical detection of the cells. The investigated microstructures, fabricated by electrochemical micromachining of standard silicon wafers, consist of periodic arrays of silicon walls separated by narrow deeply etched air-gaps (50 μm high and 5 μm wide) and feature the typical spectral properties of photonic crystals in the wavelength range 1.0-1.7 μm: their spectral reflectivity is characterized by wavelength regions where reflectivity is high (photonic bandgaps), separated by narrow wavelength regions where reflectivity is very low. In this work, we show that the presence of cells, grown inside the gaps, strongly affects light propagation across the photonic crystal and, therefore, its spectral reflectivity. Exploiting a label-free optical detection method, based on a fiberoptic setup, we are able to probe the extension of cells adherent to the vertical silicon walls with a non-invasive direct testing. In particular, the intensity ratio at two wavelengths is the experimental parameter that can be well correlated to the cell spreading on the silicon wall inside the gaps.

  6. Coded illumination for motion-blur free imaging of cells on cell-phone based imaging flow cytometer (United States)

    Saxena, Manish; Gorthi, Sai Siva


    Cell-phone based imaging flow cytometry can be realized by flowing cells through the microfluidic devices, and capturing their images with an optically enhanced camera of the cell-phone. Throughput in flow cytometers is usually enhanced by increasing the flow rate of cells. However, maximum frame rate of camera system limits the achievable flow rate. Beyond this, the images become highly blurred due to motion-smear. We propose to address this issue with coded illumination, which enables recovery of high-fidelity images of cells far beyond their motion-blur limit. This paper presents simulation results of deblurring the synthetically generated cell/bead images under such coded illumination.

  7. Photodynamic Approach for Teratoma-Free Pluripotent Stem Cell Therapy Using CDy1 and Visible Light (United States)


    Pluripotent stem cells (PSC) are promising resources for regeneration therapy, but teratoma formation is one of the critical problems for safe clinical application. After differentiation, the precise detection and subsequent elimination of undifferentiated PSC is essential for teratoma-free stem cell therapy, but a practical procedure is yet to be developed. CDy1, a PSC specific fluorescent probe, was investigated for the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and demonstrated to induce selective death of PSC upon visible light irradiation. Importantly, the CDy1 and/or light irradiation did not negatively affect differentiated endothelial cells. The photodynamic treatment of PSC with CDy1 and visible light irradiation confirmed the inhibition of teratoma formation in mice, and suggests a promising new approach to safe PSC-based cell therapy. PMID:27725957

  8. Label Free Detection of CD4+ and CD8+ T Cells Using the Optofluidic Ring Resonator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John T. Gohring


    Full Text Available We have demonstrated label free detection of CD4+ and CD8+ T-Lymphocyte whole cells and CD4+ T-Lymphocyte cell lysis using the optofluidic ring resonator (OFRR sensor. The OFRR sensing platform incorporates microfluidics and photonics in a setup that utilizes small sample volume and achieves a fast detection time. In this work, white blood cells were isolated from healthy blood and the concentrations were adjusted to match T-Lymphocyte levels of individuals infected with HIV. Detection was accomplished by immobilizing CD4 and CD8 antibodies on the inner surface of the OFRR. Sensing results show excellent detection of CD4+ and CD8+ T-Lymphocyte cells at medically significant concentrations with a detection time of approximately 30 minutes. This work will lead to a rapid and low-cost sensing device that can provide a CD4 and CD8 count as a measure of HIV progression.

  9. Induction of Neural Progenitor-Like Cells from Human Fibroblasts via a Genetic Material-Free Approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fahimeh Mirakhori

    Full Text Available A number of studies generated induced neural progenitor cells (iNPCs from human fibroblasts by viral delivering defined transcription factors. However, the potential risks associated with gene delivery systems have limited their clinical use. We propose it would be safer to induce neural progenitor-like cells from human adult fibroblasts via a direct non-genetic alternative approach.Here, we have reported that seven rounds of TAT-SOX2 protein transduction in a defined chemical cocktail under a 3D sphere culture gradually morphed fibroblasts into neuroepithelial-like colonies. We were able to expand these cells for up to 20 passages. These cells could give rise to cells that expressed neurons and glia cell markers both in vitro and in vivo.These results show that our approach is beneficial for the genetic material-free generation of iNPCs from human fibroblasts where small chemical molecules can provide a valuable, viable strategy to boost and improve induction in a 3D sphere culture.

  10. Active Stat3 is required for survival of human squamous cell carcinoma cells in serum-free conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DiGiovanni John


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC of the skin is the most aggressive form of non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC, and is the single most commonly diagnosed cancer in the U.S., with over one million new cases reported each year. Recent studies have revealed an oncogenic role of activated signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (Stat3 in many human tumors, especially in those of epithelial origin, including skin SCC. Stat3 is a mediator of numerous growth factor and cytokine signaling pathways, all of which activate it through phosphorylation of tyrosine 705. Results To further address the role of Stat3 in skin SCC tumorigenesis, we have analyzed a panel of human skin-derived cell lines ranging from normal human epidermal keratinocytes (NHEK, to non-tumorigenic transformed skin cells (HaCaT, to highly tumorigenic cells (SRB1-m7 and SRB12-p9 and observed a positive correlation between Stat3 phosphorylation and SCC malignancy. We next determined the role of Stat3 activity in cell proliferation and viability under serum-free culture conditions. This was accomplished by suppressing Stat3 activity in the SRB12-p9 cells through stable expression of a dominant negative acting form of Stat3β, which contains a tyrosine 705 to phenylalanine mutation (S3DN. The S3DN cells behaved similar to parental SRB12-p9 cells when cultured in optimal growth conditions, in the presence of 10% fetal calf serum. However, unlike the SRB12-p9 cells, S3DN cells underwent apoptotic cell death when cultured in serum-free medium (SFM. This was evidenced by multiple criteria, including accumulation of sub-G1 particles, induced PARP cleavage, and acquisition of the characteristic morphological changes associated with apoptosis. Conclusion This study provides direct evidence for a role for Stat3 in maintaining cell survival in the conditions of exogenous growth factor deprivation produced by culture in SFM. We also propose that delivery of the S3DN gene or

  11. Cell-free synthesis and multifold screening of Candida antarctica lipase B (CalB) variants after combinatorial mutagenesis of hot spots. (United States)

    Park, Chang-Gil; Kwon, Min-A; Song, Jae-Kwang; Kim, Dong-Myung


    We have developed a strategy for rapid and combinatorial optimization of the hot spot residues of enzymes. After combinatorial randomization of target locations in the Candida antarctica lipase B (CalB) gene, the individual variant genes isolated in the E.coli cells were expressed in the cell-free protein synthesis system to analyze different parameters of the resulting CalB variants. The enzymatic assays for the hydrolysis of para-nitrophenyl-ester (pNP-ester) and triglyceride, synthesis of wax ester, and thermal stability of the variant enzymes were carried out simultaneously in 96-well microtiter plates. From the 1,000 variant genes tested in each assay, we were able to identify a series of the variant enzymes having markedly improved hydrolytic, synthetic activity, or thermal stability. The improved traits of the cell-free selected CalB variants were well reproduced when the corresponding genes were expressed in Pichia pastoris. Therefore, we expect that the proposed strategy of cell-free expression screening can serve as a viable option for rapid and precise tuning of enzyme molecules, not only for analytical purposes but also for industrial applications through large scale production using microbial cells transformed with variant genes selected from the cell-free expression screening.

  12. ITO-Free Semitransparent Organic Solar Cells Based on Silver Thin Film Electrodes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhizhe Wang


    Full Text Available ITO-free semitransparent organic solar cells (OSCs based on MoO3/Ag anodes with poly(3-hexylthiophene and [6,6]-phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester films as the active layer are investigated in this work. To obtain the optimal transparent (MoO3/Ag anode, ITO-free reference OSCs are firstly fabricated. The power conversion efficiency (PCE of 2.71% is obtained for OSCs based on the optimal MoO3 (2 nm/Ag (9 nm anode, comparable to that of ITO-based reference OSCs (PCE of 2.85%. Then based on MoO3 (2 nm/Ag (9 nm anode, ITO-free semitransparent OSCs with different thickness combination of Ca and Ag as the cathodes are investigated. It is observed from our results that OSCs with Ca (15 nm/Ag (15 nm cathode have the optimal transparency. Meanwhile, the PCE of 1.79% and 0.67% is obtained for illumination from the anode and cathode side, respectively, comparable to that of similar ITO-based semitransparent OSCs (PCE of 1.59% and 0.75% for illumination from the anode and cathode side, resp. (Sol. Energy Mater. Sol. Cells, 95, pp. 877–880, 2011. The transparency and PCE of ITO-free semitransparent OSCs can be further improved by introducing a light couple layer. The developed method is compatible with various substrates, which is instructive for further research of ITO-free semitransparent OSCs.

  13. Serum-free culture of an embryonic cell line from Bombyx mori and reinforcement of susceptibility of a recombinant BmNPV by cooling. (United States)

    Imanishi, Shigeo; Kobayashi, Jun; Sekine, Toshiaki


    We established the first continuous cell line that uses a serum-free culture from the embryo of Bombyx mori (Lepidoptera: Bombycidae), designated as NIAS-Bm-Ke17. This cell line was serially subcultured in the SH-Ke-117 medium. The cells adhere weakly to the culture flask, and most cells have an oval shape. The cell line was subcultured 154 times, and the population doubling time is 83.67±5.22 h. Random amplification of polymorphic DNA-polymerase chain reaction with a tenmar single primer for discrimination of insect cell lines recognized the NIAS-Bm-Ke1 cell line as B. mori. This cell line does not support the growth of the B. mori nuclear polyhedrosis virus (BmNPV) in the absence of the heat-inactivated hemolymph of B. mori. However, the heat-inactivated hemolymph in 1% volume of the medium supported a high level of susceptibility to BmNPV. In addition, the cooling treatment of the cells at 2.5°C also enhanced the susceptibility. We report a new serum-free culture system of the B. mori cell line for the baculovirus expression vector system.

  14. High-throughput, cell-free, liposome-based approach for assessing in vitro activity of lipid kinases. (United States)

    Demian, Douglas J; Clugston, Susan L; Foster, Meta M; Rameh, Lucia; Sarkes, Deborah; Townson, Sharon A; Yang, Lily; Zhang, Melvin; Charlton, Maura E


    Lipid kinases are central players in lipid signaling pathways involved in inflammation, tumorigenesis, and metabolic syndrome. A number of these kinase targets have proven difficult to investigate in higher throughput cell-free assay systems. This challenge is partially due to specific substrate interaction requirements for several of the lipid kinase family members and the resulting incompatibility of these substrates with most established, homogeneous assay formats. Traditional, cell-free in vitro investigational methods for members of the lipid kinase family typically involve substrate incorporation of [gamma-32P] and resolution of signal by thin-layer chromatography (TLC) and autoradiograph densitometry. This approach, although highly sensitive, does not lend itself to high-throughput testing of large numbers of small molecules (100 s to 1 MM+). The authors present the development and implementation of a fully synthetic, liposome-based assay for assessing in vitro activity of phosphatidylinositol-5-phosphate-4-kinase isoforms (PIP4KIIbeta and alpha) in 2 commonly used homogeneous technologies. They have validated these assays through compound testing in both traditional TLC and radioactive filterplate approaches as well as binding validation using isothermic calorimetry. A directed library representing known kinase pharmacophores was screened against type IIbeta phosphatidylinositol-phosphate kinase (PIPK) to identify small-molecule inhibitors. This assay system can be applied to other types and isoforms of PIPKs as well as a variety of other lipid kinase targets.

  15. Large PMD Compensated by Four Free Degrees in OTDM System

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LUO Rui; LI Tang-jun; WANG Mu-guang; JIAN Shui-sheng; XU Jing-jing


    By introducing a two-stage polarization mode dispersion (PMD) compensator after a optical fiber link with a large PMD,over 270 ps first-order and 2 000 ps2 high-order PMD was compensated. The results show that the two-stage compensator can be used to PMD compensation in the 20 Gb/s optical time division multiplexing system with 60 km high PMD fiber. After compensating,the 270 ps DGD is changed into max. 7 ps. Moreover,the tunable FBG has a function of dispersion compensation.

  16. Cell membrane topology analysis by RICM enables marker-free adhesion strength quantification. (United States)

    Klein, Katharina; Rommel, Christina E; Hirschfeld-Warneken, Vera C; Spatz, Joachim P


    Reflection interference contrast microscopy (RICM) allows the visualization of the cell's adhesion topology on substrates. Here it is applied as a new label-free method to measure adhesion forces between tumor cells and their substrate without any external manipulation, i.e., the application of force or adjustments in the substrate elasticity. Malignant cancer transformation is closely associated with the down-regulation of adhesion proteins and the consequent reduction of adhesion forces. By analyzing the size and distribution of adhesion patches from a benign and a malignant human pancreatic tumor cell line, we established a model for calculating the adhesion strength based on RICM images. Further, we could show that the cell's spread area does not necessarily scale with adhesion strength. Despite the larger projected cell area of the malignant cell line, adhesion strength was clearly reduced. This underscores the importance of adhesion patch analysis. The calculated force values were verified by microfluidic detachment assays. Static and dynamic RICM measurements produce numerous adhesion-related parameters from which characteristic cell signatures can be derived. Such a cellular fingerprint can refine the process of categorizing cell lines according to their grade of differentiation.

  17. Degradation of h-acid by free and immobilized cells of Alcaligenes latus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.S. Usha


    Full Text Available Alcaligenes latus, isolated from industrial effluent, was able to grow in mineral salts medium with 50 ppm (0.15 mM of H-acid as a sole source of carbon. Immobilization of Alcaligenes latus in Ca-alginate and polyurethane foam resulted in cells embedded in the matrices. When free cells and immobilized cells were used for biodegradation studies at concentration ranging from 100 ppm (0.3 mM to 500 ppm (1.15 mM degradation rate was enhanced with immobilized cells. Cells immobilized in polyurethane foam showed 100% degradation up to 350 ppm (1.05 mM and 57% degradation at 500 ppm (1.5 mM. Degradation rate of Ca-alginate immobilized cells was less as compared to that of polyurethane foam immobilized cells. With Ca-alginate immobilized cells 100% degradation was recorded up to 200 ppm (0.6 mM of H-acid and only 33% degradation was recorded at 500 ppm (1.5 mM of H-acid. Spectral analysis of the products after H-acid utilization showed that the spent medium did not contain any aromatic compounds indicating H-acid degradation by A. latus.

  18. 3D Simulation of Flow with Free Surface Based on Adaptive Octree Mesh System

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Li Shaowu; Zhuang Qian; Huang Xiaoyun; Wang Dong


    The technique of adaptive tree mesh is an effective way to reduce computational cost through automatic adjustment of cell size according to necessity. In the present study, the 2D numerical N-S solver based on the adaptive quadtree mesh system was extended to a 3D one, in which a spatially adaptive octree mesh system and multiple parti-cle level set method were adopted for the convenience to deal with the air-water-structure multiple-medium coexisting domain. The stretching process of a dumbbell was simulated and the results indicate that the meshes are well adaptable to the free surface. The collapsing process of water column impinging a circle cylinder was simulated and from the results, it can be seen that the processes of fluid splitting and merging are properly simulated. The interaction of sec-ond-order Stokes waves with a square cylinder was simulated and the obtained drag force is consistent with the result by the Morison’s wave force formula with the coefficient values of the stable drag component and the inertial force component being set as 2.54.

  19. A Selective and Purification-Free Strategy for Labeling Adherent Cells with Inorganic Nanoparticles. (United States)

    Gao, Yu; Lim, Jing; Yeo, David Chen Loong; Liao, Shanshan; Lans, Malin; Wang, Yaqi; Teoh, Swee-Hin; Goh, Bee Tin; Xu, Chenjie


    Cellular labeling with inorganic nanoparticles such as magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles, quantum dots, and fluorescent silica nanoparticles is an important method for the noninvasive visualization of cells using various imaging modalities. Currently, this is mainly achieved through the incubation of cultured cells with the nanoparticles that eventually reach the intracellular compartment through specific or nonspecific internalization. This classic method is advantageous in terms of simplicity and convenience, but it suffers from issues such as difficulties in fully removing free nanoparticles (suspended in solution) and the lack of selectivity on cell types. This article reports an innovative strategy for the specific labeling of adherent cells without the concern of freely suspended nanoparticles. This method relies on a nanocomposite film that is prepared by homogeneously dispersing nanoparticles within a biodegradable polymeric film. When adherent cells are seeded on the film, they adhere, spread, and filtrate into the film through the micropores formed during the film fabrication. The pre-embedded nanoparticles are thus internalized by the cells during this infiltration process. As an example, fluorescent silica nanoparticles were homogeneously distributed within a polycaprolactone film by utilizing cryomilling and heat pressing. Upon incubation within physiological buffer, no silica nanoparticles were released from the nanocomposite film even after 20 d of incubation. However, when adherent cells (e.g., human mesenchymal stem cells) were grown on the film, they became fluorescent after 3 d, which suggests internalization of silica nanoparticles by cells. In comparison, the suspension cells (e.g., monocytes) in the medium remained nonfluorescent no matter whether there was the presence of adherent cells or not. This strategy eventually allowed the selective and concomitant labeling of mesenchymal stem cells during their harvest from bone marrow aspiration.

  20. The effect of system boundaries on the mean free path for confined gases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sooraj K. Prabha


    Full Text Available The mean free path of rarefied gases is accurately determined using Molecular Dynamics simulations. The simulations are carried out on isothermal argon gas (Lennard-Jones fluid over a range of rarefaction levels under various confinements (unbounded gas, parallel reflective wall and explicit solid platinum wall bounded gas in a nanoscale domain. The system is also analyzed independently in constitutive sub-systems to calculate the corresponding local mean free paths. Our studies which predominate in the transition regime substantiate the boundary limiting effect on mean free paths owing to the sharp diminution in molecular free paths near the planar boundaries. These studies provide insight to the transport phenomena of rarefied gases through nanochannels which have established their potential in microscale and nanoscale heat transfer applications.

  1. Foundational ethics of the health care system: the moral and practical superiority of free market reforms. (United States)

    Sade, Robert M


    Proposed solutions to the problems of this country's health care system range along a spectrum from central planning to free market. Central planners and free market advocates provide various ethical justifications for the policies they propose. The crucial flaw in the philosophical rationale of central planning is failure to distinguish between normative and metanormative principles, which leads to mistaken understanding of the nature of rights. Natural rights, based on the principle of noninterference, provide the link between individual morality and social order. Free markets, the practical expression of natural rights, are uniquely capable of achieving the goals that central planners seek but find beyond their grasp. The history of this country's health care system and the experiences of other nations provide evidence of the superiority of free markets in reaching for the goals of universal access, control of costs, and sustaining the quality of health care.

  2. Generation of integration-free human induced pluripotent stem cells from postnatal blood mononuclear cells by plasmid vector expression. (United States)

    Dowey, Sarah N; Huang, Xiaosong; Chou, Bin-Kuan; Ye, Zhaohui; Cheng, Linzhao


    Several human postnatal somatic cell types have been successfully reprogrammed to induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). Blood mononuclear cells (MNCs) offer several advantages compared with other cell types. They are easily isolated from umbilical cord blood (CB) or adult peripheral blood (PB), and can be used fresh or after freezing. A short culture allows for more efficient reprogramming, with iPSC colonies forming from blood MNCs in 14 d, compared with 28 d for age-matched fibroblastic cells. The advantages of briefly cultured blood MNCs may be due to favorable epigenetic profiles and gene expression patterns. Blood cells from adults, especially nonlymphoid cells that are replenished frequently from intermittently activated blood stem cells, are short-lived in vivo and may contain less somatic mutations than skin fibroblasts, which are more exposed to environmental mutagens over time. We describe here a detailed, validated protocol for effective generation of integration-free human iPSCs from blood MNCs by plasmid vectors.

  3. Solution of 2D Boussinesq systems with FreeFem++: The flat bottom case

    CERN Document Server

    Sadaka, Georges


    FreeFem++ is an open source platform to solve partial differential equations numerically, based on finite element methods. The FreeFem++ platform has been developed to facilitate teaching and basic research through prototyping. For the moment this platform is restricted to the numerical simulations of problems which admit a variational formulation. We will use FreeFem++ in this work to solve a three-parameter family of Boussinesq type systems in two space dimensions which approximate the three-dimensional Euler equations over an horizontal bottom.

  4. Larger number of invariant natural killer T cells in PBSC allografts correlates with improved GVHD-free and progression-free survival. (United States)

    Malard, Florent; Labopin, Myriam; Chevallier, Patrice; Guillaume, Thierry; Duquesne, Alix; Rialland, Fanny; Derenne, Sophie; Peterlin, Pierre; Leauté, Anne-Gaelle; Brissot, Eolia; Gregoire, Marc; Moreau, Philippe; Saas, Philippe; Gaugler, Béatrice; Mohty, Mohamad


    We studied the impact of a set of immune cells contained within granulocyte colony-stimulating factor-mobilized peripheral blood stem cell grafts (naïve and memory T-cell subsets, B cells, regulatory T cells, invariant natural killer T cells [iNKTs], NK cells, and dendritic cell subsets) in patients (n = 80) undergoing allogeneic stem cell transplantation (SCT), using the composite end point of graft-versus-host disease (GVHD)-free and progression-free survival (GPFS) as the primary end point. We observed that GPFS incidences in patients receiving iNKT doses above and below the median were 49% vs 22%, respectively (P= .007). In multivariate analysis, the iNKT dose was the only parameter with a significant impact on GPFS (hazard ratio = 0.48; 95% confidence interval, 0.27-0.85;P= .01). The incidences of severe grade III to IV acute GVHD and National Institutes of Health grade 2 to 3 chronic GVHD (12% and 16%, respectively) were low and associated with the use of antithymocyte globulin in 91% of patients. No difference in GVHD incidence was reported according to the iNKT dose. In conclusion, a higher dose of iNKTs within the graft is associated with an improved GPFS. These data may pave the way for prospective and active interventions aiming to manipulate the graft content to improve allo-SCT outcome.

  5. The thioredoxin system in breast cancer cell invasion and migration. (United States)

    Bhatia, Maneet; McGrath, Kelly L; Di Trapani, Giovanna; Charoentong, Pornpimol; Shah, Fenil; King, Mallory M; Clarke, Frank M; Tonissen, Kathryn F


    Metastasis is the most life threatening aspect of breast cancer. It is a multi-step process involving invasion and migration of primary tumor cells with a subsequent colonization of these cells at a secondary location. The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of thioredoxin (Trx1) in the invasion and migration of breast cancer cells and to assess the strength of the association between high levels of Trx1 and thioredoxin reductase (TrxR1) expression with breast cancer patient survival. Our results indicate that the expression of both Trx1 and TrxR1 are statistically significantly increased in breast cancer patient cells compared with paired normal breast tissue from the same patient. Over-expression of Trx1 in MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cell lines enhanced cell invasion in in vitro assays while expression of a redox inactive mutant form of Trx1 (designated 1SS) or the antisense mRNA inhibited cell invasion. Addition of exogenous Trx1 also enhanced cell invasion, while addition of a specific monoclonal antibody that inhibits Trx1 redox function decreased cell invasion. Over-expression of intracellular Trx1 did not increase cell migration but expression of intracellular 1SS inhibited migration. Addition of exogenous Trx1 enhanced cell migration while 1SS had no effect. Treatment with auranofin inhibited TrxR activity, cell migration and clonogenic activity of MDA-MB-231 cells, while increasing reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels. Analysis of 25 independent cohorts with 5910 patients showed that Trx1 and TrxR1 were both associated with a poor patient prognosis in terms of overall survival, distant metastasis free survival and disease free survival. Therefore, targeting the Trx system with auranofin or other specific inhibitors may provide improved breast cancer patient outcomes through inhibition of cancer invasion and migration.

  6. The thioredoxin system in breast cancer cell invasion and migration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maneet Bhatia


    Full Text Available Metastasis is the most life threatening aspect of breast cancer. It is a multi-step process involving invasion and migration of primary tumor cells with a subsequent colonization of these cells at a secondary location. The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of thioredoxin (Trx1 in the invasion and migration of breast cancer cells and to assess the strength of the association between high levels of Trx1 and thioredoxin reductase (TrxR1 expression with breast cancer patient survival. Our results indicate that the expression of both Trx1 and TrxR1 are statistically significantly increased in breast cancer patient cells compared with paired normal breast tissue from the same patient. Over-expression of Trx1 in MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cell lines enhanced cell invasion in in vitro assays while expression of a redox inactive mutant form of Trx1 (designated 1SS or the antisense mRNA inhibited cell invasion. Addition of exogenous Trx1 also enhanced cell invasion, while addition of a specific monoclonal antibody that inhibits Trx1 redox function decreased cell invasion. Over-expression of intracellular Trx1 did not increase cell migration but expression of intracellular 1SS inhibited migration. Addition of exogenous Trx1 enhanced cell migration while 1SS had no effect. Treatment with auranofin inhibited TrxR activity, cell migration and clonogenic activity of MDA-MB-231 cells, while increasing reactive oxygen species (ROS levels. Analysis of 25 independent cohorts with 5910 patients showed that Trx1 and TrxR1 were both associated with a poor patient prognosis in terms of overall survival, distant metastasis free survival and disease free survival. Therefore, targeting the Trx system with auranofin or other specific inhibitors may provide improved breast cancer patient outcomes through inhibition of cancer invasion and migration.

  7. Purines, free radicals and antioxidant systems : a study in hearts of various species, including humans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M. Janssen (Maarten)


    textabstractATP is vital for contractility and basal metabolism, i.e. maintenance of ions through membrane pumps. Derangement in high-energy substrates levels due to ischemia could lead to cell death or prolonged post-ischemic dysfunction. Furthermore, other lethal substances, like free radicals, ca

  8. Battery Cell Balancing System and Method (United States)

    Davies, Francis J. (Inventor)


    A battery cell balancing system is operable to utilize a relatively small number of transformers interconnected with a battery having a plurality of battery cells to selectively charge the battery cells. Windings of the transformers are simultaneously driven with a plurality of waveforms whereupon selected battery cells or groups of cells are selected and charged. A transformer drive circuit is operable to selectively vary the waveforms to thereby vary a weighted voltage associated with each of the battery cells.

  9. Artifact-free data recovery system for an ASNOM application

    CERN Document Server

    Kazantsev, Dmitry


    A digital signal acquisition system for an Apertureless SNOM (ASNOM) based on a digital signal processing (DSP) card is presented. An electromagnetic wave scattered by an AFM-like tip is initially detected by an optical homodyning in a Michelson interferometer, with a homodyne phase modulation caused by a periodic travel of the reference arm mirror. Utilizing a non-linear dependency of the tip scattering amplitude on a tip-sample separation distance, the non-fundamental components of a tip oscillation frequency are recovered in optical signal within each tip oscillation period. A detected value, corresponding mostly to the near-field modes of a tip-sample electromagnetic interaction, is then averaged over all reference phases. A modular structure of the data acquisition and signal recovery program allows modify easily the modes of operation and the recovery algorithms.

  10. Biosensing and bioremediation of Cr(VI) by cell free extract of Enterobacter aerogenes T2. (United States)

    Panda, Jigisha; Sarkar, Priyabrata


    Hexavalent chromium or Cr(VI) enters the environment through several anthropogenic activities and it is highly toxic and carcinogenic. Hence it is required to be detected and remediated from the environment. In this study, low-cost and environment-friendly methods of biosensing and bioremediation of Cr(VI) have been proposed. Crude cell free extract (CFE) of previously isolated Enterobacter aerogenes T2 (GU265554; NII 1111) was prepared and exploited to develop a stable biosensor for direct estimation of Cr(VI) in waste water, by using three electrodes via cyclic voltammetry. For bioremediation studies, a homogeneous solution of commercially available sodium alginate and CFE was added dropwise in a continuously stirred calcium chloride solution. Biologically modified calcium alginate beads were produced and these were further utilized for bioremediation studies. The proposed sensor showed linear response in the range of 10-40 μg L(-1) Cr(VI) and the limit of detection was found to be 6.6 μg L(-1) Cr(VI). No interference was observed in presence of metal ions, e.g., lead, cadmium, arsenic, tin etc., except for insignificant interference with molybdenum and manganese. In bioremediation studies, modified calcium alginate beads showed encouraging removal rate 900 mg Cr(VI)/m(3) water per day with a removal efficiency of 90%, much above than reported in literature. The proposed sensing system could be a viable alternative to costly measurement procedures. Calcium alginate beads, modified with CFE of E. aerogenes, could be used in bioremediation of Cr(VI) since it could work in real conditions with extraordinarily high capacity.

  11. The carcinogen safrole increases intracellular free Ca2+ levels and causes death in MDCK cells. (United States)

    Chen, Wei-Chuan; Cheng, He-Hsiung; Huang, Chun-Jen; Lu, Yih-Chau; Chen, I-Shu; Liu, Shiuh-Inn; Hsu, Shu-Shong; Chang, Hong-Tai; Huang, Jong-Khing; Chen, Jin-Shyr; Jan, Chung-Ren


    The effect of the carcinogen safrole on intracellular Ca2+ movement in renal tubular cells has not been explored previously. The present study examined whether safrole could alter Ca2+ handling in Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells. Cytosolic free Ca2+ levels ([Ca2+]i) in populations of cells were measured using fura-2 as a fluorescent Ca2+ probe. Safrole at concentrations above 33 microM increased [Ca2+]i in a concentration-dependent manner with an EC50 value of 400 microM. The Ca2+ signal was reduced by 90% by removing extracellular Ca2+, but was not affected by nifedipine, verapamil, or diltiazem. Addition of Ca2+ after safrole had depleted intracellular Ca(2+)-induced dramatic Ca2+ influx, suggesting that safrole caused store-operated Ca2+ entry. In Ca(2+)-free medium, after pretreatment with 650 microM safrole, 1 microM thapsigargin (an endoplasmic reticulum Ca2+ pump inhibitor) failed to release more Ca 2+. Inhibition of phospholipase C with 2 microM U73122 did not affect safrole-induced Ca2+ release. Trypan blue exclusion assays revealed that incubation with 650 microM safrole for 30 min did not kill cells, but killed 70% of cells after incubation for 60 min. Collectively, the data suggest that in MDCK cells, safrole induced a [Ca2+] increase by causing Ca2+ release from the endoplasmic reticulum in a phospholipase C-independent fashion, and by inducing Ca2+ influx via store-operated Ca2+ entry. Furthermore, safrole can cause acute toxicity to MDCK cells.

  12. Efficient generation of multipotent mesenchymal stem cells from umbilical cord blood in stroma-free liquid culture.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rowayda Peters

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Haematopoiesis is sustained by haematopoietic (HSC and mesenchymal stem cells (MSC. HSC are the precursors for blood cells, whereas marrow, stroma, bone, cartilage, muscle and connective tissues derive from MSC. The generation of MSC from umbilical cord blood (UCB is possible, but with low and unpredictable success. Here we describe a novel, robust stroma-free dual cell culture system for long-term expansion of primitive UCB-derived MSC. METHODS AND FINDINGS: UCB-derived mononuclear cells (MNC or selected CD34(+ cells were grown in liquid culture in the presence of serum and cytokines. Out of 32 different culture conditions that have been tested for the efficient expansion of HSC, we identified one condition (DMEM, pooled human AB serum, Flt-3 ligand, SCF, MGDF and IL-6; further denoted as D7 which, besides supporting HSC expansion, successfully enabled long-term expansion of stromal/MSC from 8 out of 8 UCB units (5 MNC-derived and 3 CD34(+ selected cells. Expanded MSC displayed a fibroblast-like morphology, expressed several stromal/MSC-related antigens (CD105, CD73, CD29, CD44, CD133 and Nestin but were negative for haematopoietic cell markers (CD45, CD34 and CD14. MSC stemness phenotype and their differentiation capacity in vitro before and after high dilution were preserved throughout long-term culture. Even at passage 24 cells remained Nestin(+, CD133(+ and >95% were positive for CD105, CD73, CD29 and CD44 with the capacity to differentiate into mesodermal lineages. Similarly we show that UCB derived MSC express pluripotency stem cell markers despite differences in cell confluency and culture passages. Further, we generated MSC from peripheral blood (PB MNC of 8 healthy volunteers. In all cases, the resulting MSC expressed MSC-related antigens and showed the capacity to form CFU-F colonies. CONCLUSIONS: This novel stroma-free liquid culture overcomes the existing limitation in obtaining MSC from UCB and PB enabling so far unmet

  13. Label-free nonlinear optical microscopy detects early markers for osteogenic differentiation of human stem cells (United States)

    Hofemeier, Arne D.; Hachmeister, Henning; Pilger, Christian; Schürmann, Matthias; Greiner, Johannes F. W.; Nolte, Lena; Sudhoff, Holger; Kaltschmidt, Christian; Huser, Thomas; Kaltschmidt, Barbara


    Tissue engineering by stem cell differentiation is a novel treatment option for bone regeneration. Most approaches for the detection of osteogenic differentiation are invasive or destructive and not compatible with live cell analysis. Here, non-destructive and label-free approaches of Raman spectroscopy, coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) and second harmonic generation (SHG) microscopy were used to detect and image osteogenic differentiation of human neural crest-derived inferior turbinate stem cells (ITSCs). Combined CARS and SHG microscopy was able to detect markers of osteogenesis within 14 days after osteogenic induction. This process increased during continued differentiation. Furthermore, Raman spectroscopy showed significant increases of the PO43‑ symmetric stretch vibrations at 959 cm‑1 assigned to calcium hydroxyapatite between days 14 and 21. Additionally, CARS microscopy was able to image calcium hydroxyapatite deposits within 14 days following osteogenic induction, which was confirmed by Alizarin Red-Staining and RT- PCR. Taken together, the multimodal label-free analysis methods Raman spectroscopy, CARS and SHG microscopy can monitor osteogenic differentiation of adult human stem cells into osteoblasts with high sensitivity and spatial resolution in three dimensions. Our findings suggest a great potential of these optical detection methods for clinical applications including in vivo observation of bone tissue–implant-interfaces or disease diagnosis.

  14. Highly Efficient Neural Conversion of Human Pluripotent Stem Cells in Adherent and Animal-Free Conditions. (United States)

    Lukovic, Dunja; Diez Lloret, Andrea; Stojkovic, Petra; Rodríguez-Martínez, Daniel; Perez Arago, Maria Amparo; Rodriguez-Jimenez, Francisco Javier; González-Rodríguez, Patricia; López-Barneo, José; Sykova, Eva; Jendelova, Pavla; Kostic, Jelena; Moreno-Manzano, Victoria; Stojkovic, Miodrag; Bhattacharya, Shomi S; Erceg, Slaven


    Neural differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) can produce a valuable and robust source of human neural cell subtypes, holding great promise for the study of neurogenesis and development, and for treating neurological diseases. However, current hESCs and hiPSCs neural differentiation protocols require either animal factors or embryoid body formation, which decreases efficiency and yield, and strongly limits medical applications. Here we develop a simple, animal-free protocol for neural conversion of both hESCs and hiPSCs in adherent culture conditions. A simple medium formula including insulin induces the direct conversion of >98% of hESCs and hiPSCs into expandable, transplantable, and functional neural progenitors with neural rosette characteristics. Further differentiation of neural progenitors into dopaminergic and spinal motoneurons as well as astrocytes and oligodendrocytes indicates that these neural progenitors retain responsiveness to instructive cues revealing the robust applicability of the protocol in the treatment of different neurodegenerative diseases. The fact that this protocol includes animal-free medium and human extracellular matrix components avoiding embryoid bodies makes this protocol suitable for the use in clinic. Stem Cells Translational Medicine 2017;6:1217-1226.

  15. Mechanical Behavior of Free-Standing Fuel Cell Electrodes on Water Surface. (United States)

    Kim, Sanwi; Kim, Jae-Han; Oh, Jong-Gil; Jang, Kyung-Lim; Jeong, Byeong-Heon; Hong, Bo Ki; Kim, Taek-Soo


    Fundamental understanding of the mechanical behavior of polymer electrolyte fuel cell electrodes as free-standing materials is essential to develop mechanically robust fuel cells. However, this has been a significant challenge due to critical difficulties, such as separating the pristine electrode from the substrate without damage and precisely measuring the mechanical properties of the very fragile and thin electrodes. We report the mechanical behavior of free-standing fuel cell electrodes on the water surface through adopting an innovative ice-assisted separation method to separate the electrode from decal transfer film. It is found that doubling the ionomer content in electrodes increases not only the tensile stress at the break and the Young's modulus (E) of the electrodes by approximately 2.1-3.5 and 1.7-2.4 times, respectively, but also the elongation at the break by approximately 1.5-1.7 times, which indicates that stronger, stiffer, and tougher electrodes are attained with increasing ionomer content, which have been of significant interest in materials research fields. The scaling law relationship between Young's modulus and density (ρ) has been unveiled as E ∼ ρ(1.6), and it is compared with other materials. These findings can be used to develop mechanically robust electrodes for fuel cell applications.

  16. In situ formation of leak-free polyethylene glycol (PEG) membranes in microfluidic fuel cells. (United States)

    Ho, W F; Lim, K M; Yang, K-L


    Membraneless microfluidic fuel cells operated under two co-laminar flows often face serious fuel cross-over problems, especially when flow rates are close to zero. In this study, we show that polyethylene glycol (PEG) monomers can be cross-linked inside microfluidic channels to form leak-free PEG membranes, which prevent mixing of two incompatible electrolyte solutions while allowing diffusion of certain molecules (e.g. glucose) and ions. By using PEG monomers of different molecular weights and cross-linking conditions, we are able to tailor selectivity of the membrane to allow passage of glucose while blocking larger molecules such as trypan blue. As a proof of principle, a microfluidic fuel cell with a PEG membrane and two incompatible electrolytes (acid and base) is demonstrated. Thanks to the leak-free nature of the PEG membrane, these two electrolytes do not mix together even at very slow flow rates. This microfluidic fuel cell is able to generate a voltage up to ∼450 mV from 10 mM of glucose with a flow rate of 20 μL min(-1). This microfluidic fuel cell is potentially useful as a miniature power source for many applications.

  17. Development of background-free tame fluorescent probes for intracellular live cell imaging (United States)

    Alamudi, Samira Husen; Satapathy, Rudrakanta; Kim, Jihyo; Su, Dongdong; Ren, Haiyan; Das, Rajkumar; Hu, Lingna; Alvarado-Martínez, Enrique; Lee, Jung Yeol; Hoppmann, Christian; Peña-Cabrera, Eduardo; Ha, Hyung-Ho; Park, Hee-Sung; Wang, Lei; Chang, Young-Tae


    Fluorescence labelling of an intracellular biomolecule in native living cells is a powerful strategy to achieve in-depth understanding of the biomolecule's roles and functions. Besides being nontoxic and specific, desirable labelling probes should be highly cell permeable without nonspecific interactions with other cellular components to warrant high signal-to-noise ratio. While it is critical, rational design for such probes is tricky. Here we report the first predictive model for cell permeable background-free probe development through optimized lipophilicity, water solubility and charged van der Waals surface area. The model was developed by utilizing high-throughput screening in combination with cheminformatics. We demonstrate its reliability by developing CO-1 and AzG-1, a cyclooctyne- and azide-containing BODIPY probe, respectively, which specifically label intracellular target organelles and engineered proteins with minimum background. The results provide an efficient strategy for development of background-free probes, referred to as ‘tame' probes, and novel tools for live cell intracellular imaging. PMID:27321135

  18. Biodegradation of phenol by using free and immobilized cells of Acinetobacter sp. BS8Y. (United States)

    Jiang, Lichun; Ruan, Qiping; Li, Rulan; Li, Tiandong


    Strain BS8Y with high biodegradation activity and high tolerance of phenol was isolated from activated sludge in an insulating material plant of China. This strain was capable of removing 99.2% of the initial 600 mg/l phenol in liquid minimal medium within 24 h and tolerating phenol at concentrations of up to 1,200 mg/ml. DNA sequencing and homologous analysis of the 16S rRNA gene identified that the strain BS8Y belonged to an Acinetobacter species. Polyvinyl alcohol was used as gel matrix to immobilize the strain BS8Y. The factors affecting the phenol degradation by immobilized cells and the phenol removal efficiency of free and immobilized cells were investigated; the stability of the immobilized cells is also reported. The results show that the immobilized cells could tolerate a higher phenol level and protected the bacteria much more effectively against changes in temperature and pH. The phenol degradation efficiency was high at up to 96% within 30 h, with an initial concentration of 800 mg/l phenol, and the immobilized cells showed better performance than the suspended cells. Reusability tests revealed that the immobilized cells were stable enough even after reuse for ten times or storing at 4°C for 35 d. These results demonstrate that immobilized Acinetobacter sp. BS8Y possesses a good application potential in the treatment of phenol-containing wastewater.

  19. Rakkyo fructan as a cryoprotectant for serum-free cryopreservation of mammalian cells. (United States)

    Ogawa, Akiko; Mizui, Shinya; Chida, Yasuhito; Shimizu, Masafumi; Terada, Satoshi; Ohura, Takeshi; Kobayashi, Kyo-Ichi; Yasukawa, Saori; Moriyama, Nobuyuki


    Cryopreservation refers to the long-term storage of mammalian cells. Mammalian serum is generally used as a cryoprotectant, but is associated with problems including the risk of contamination by pathogens and quality control issues. Therefore, a serum-free cryopreservation method needs to be established. In this study, we focused on rakkyo fructan, a fructose polymer, derived from the Japanese shallot as an alternative factor to serum. Fructan contributes to tolerance to frost and dehydration in plants by stabilizing the plant membrane. However, whether fructan protects mammalian cells against freezing stress remains unknown. The ability of rakkyo fructan to be an alternative cryoprotectant to fetal bovine serum (FBS) was examined in the present study. 2E3-O, a mouse hybridoma, was preserved in rakkyo fructan, was highly viable after being defrosted, and then proliferated rapidly. When rakkyo fructan was combined with dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO), its ability to protect the hybridoma against freezing stress was improved. The rakkyo fructan and DMSO mixture was used in the cryopreservation of the mammalian cell lines CHO-DP12, a producer of recombinant antibodies, and HepG2, human hepatoma cells frequently tested in bio-artificial livers. Following the freezing and thawing processes, CHO-DP12 cells retained their ability to produce recombinant antibodies and as did HepG2 cells for albumin and mRNA expression of cytochrome P450 enzymes. These results indicate that rakkyo fructan is a promising cryoprotectant that prevents mammalian cells from freezing stress similar to FBS.

  20. Induction of pluripotency in human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells in feeder layer-free condition. (United States)

    Daneshvar, Nasibeh; Rasedee, Abdullah; Shamsabadi, Fatemeh Tash; Moeini, Hassan; Mehrboud, Parvaneh; Rahman, Heshu Sulaiman; Boroojerdi, Mohadeseh Hashem; Vellasamy, Shalini


    Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSCs) has been produced by the reprogramming of several types of somatic cells through the expression of different sets of transcription factors. This study consists of a technique to obtain iPSCs from human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (UC-MSCs) in a feeder layer-free process using a mini-circle vector containing defined reprogramming genes, Lin28, Nanog, Oct4 and Sox2. The human MSCs transfected with the minicircle vector were cultured in iPSCs medium. Human embryonic stem cell (ESC)-like colonies with tightly packed domelike structures appeared 7-10 days after the second transfection. In the earliest stages, the colonies were green fluorescence protein (GFP)-positive, while upon continuous culture and passage, genuine hiPSC clones expressing GFP were observed. The induced cells, based on the ectopic expression of the pluripotent markers, exhibited characteristics similar to the embryonic stem cells. These iPSCs demonstrated in vitro capabilities for differentiation into the three main embryonic germ layers by embryoid bodies formation. There was no evidence of transgenes integration into the genome of the iPSCs in this study. In conclusion, this method offers a means of producing iPSCs without viral delivery that could possibly overcome ethical concerns and immune rejection in the use of stem cells in medical applications.

  1. Examination by EPR spectroscopy of free radicals in melanins isolated from A-375 cells exposed on valproic acid and cisplatin. (United States)

    Chodurek, Ewa; Zdybel, Magdalena; Pilawa, Barbara; Dzierzewicz, Zofia


    Drug binding by melanin biopolymers influence the effectiveness of the chemotherapy, radiotherapy and photodynamic therapy. Free radicals of melanins take part in formation of their complex with drugs. The aim of this work was to determine the effect of the two compounds: valproic acid (VPA) and cisplatin (CPT) on free radicals properties of melanin isolated from A-375 melanoma cells. Free radicals were examined by an X-band (9.3 GHz) electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy. EPR spectra were measured for the model synthetic eumelanin - DOPA-melanin, the melanin isolated from the control A-375 cells and these cells treated by VPA, CPT and both VPA and CPT. For all the examined samples broad EPR lines (deltaBpp: 0.48-0.68 mT) with g-factors of 2.0045-2.0060 characteristic for o-semiquinone free radicals were observed. Free radicals concentrations (N) in the tested samples, g-factors, amplitudes (A), integral intensities (I) and linewidths (deltaBpp) of the EPR spectra, were analyzed. The EPR lines were homogeneously broadened. Continuous microwave saturation of the EPR spectra indicated that slow spin-lattice relaxation processes existed in all the tested melanin samples. The relatively slowest spin-lattice relaxation processes characterized melanin isolated from A-375 cells treated with both VPA and CPT. The changes of the EPR spectra with increasing microwave power in the range of 2.2-70 mW were evaluated. Free radicals concentrations in the melanin from A-375 cells were higher than in the synthetic DOPA-melanin. The strong increase of free radicals concentration in the melanin from A-375 cells was observed after their treating by VPA. CPT also caused the increase of free radicals concentrations in the examined natural melanin. The free radicals concentration in melanin isolated from A-375 cells treated with both VPA and CPT was slightly higher than those in melanin from the control cells.

  2. Derivation of xeno-free and GMP-grade human embryonic stem cells--platforms for future clinical applications.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shelly E Tannenbaum

    Full Text Available Clinically compliant human embryonic stem cells (hESCs should be developed in adherence to ethical standards, without risk of contamination by adventitious agents. Here we developed for the first time animal-component free and good manufacturing practice (GMP-compliant hESCs. After vendor and raw material qualification, we derived xeno-free, GMP-grade feeders from umbilical cord tissue, and utilized them within a novel, xeno-free hESC culture system. We derived and characterized three hESC lines in adherence to regulations for embryo procurement, and good tissue, manufacturing and laboratory practices. To minimize freezing and thawing, we continuously expanded the lines from initial outgrowths and samples were cryopreserved as early stocks and banks. Batch release criteria included DNA-fingerprinting and HLA-typing for identity, characterization of pluripotency-associated marker expression, proliferation, karyotyping and differentiation in-vitro and in-vivo. These hESCs may be valuable for regenerative therapy. The ethical, scientific and regulatory methodology presented here may serve for development of additional clinical-grade hESCs.

  3. A Cas9 Variant for Efficient Generation of Indel-Free Knockin or Gene-Corrected Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara E. Howden


    Full Text Available While Cas9 nucleases permit rapid and efficient generation of gene-edited cell lines, the CRISPR-Cas9 system can introduce undesirable “on-target” mutations within the second allele of successfully modified cells via non-homologous end joining (NHEJ. To address this, we fused the Streptococcus pyogenes Cas9 (SpCas9 nuclease to a peptide derived from the human Geminin protein (SpCas9-Gem to facilitate its degradation during the G1 phase of the cell cycle, when DNA repair by NHEJ predominates. We also use mRNA transfection to facilitate low and transient expression of modified and unmodified versions of Cas9. Although the frequency of homologous recombination was similar for SpCas9-Gem and SpCas9, we observed a marked reduction in the capacity for SpCas9-Gem to induce NHEJ-mediated indels at the target locus. Moreover, in contrast to native SpCas9, we demonstrate that transient SpCas9-Gem expression enables reliable generation of both knockin reporter cell lines and genetically repaired patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cell lines free of unwanted mutations at the targeted locus.

  4. Free fatty acid palmitate impairs the vitality and function of cultured human bladder smooth muscle cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Oberbach

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Incidence of urinary tract infections is elevated in patients with diabetes mellitus. Those patients show increased levels of the saturated free fatty acid palmitate. As recently shown metabolic alterations induced by palmitate include production and secretion of the pro-inflammatory cytokine interleukine-6 (IL-6 in cultured human bladder smooth muscle cells (hBSMC. Here we studied the influence of palmitate on vital cell properties, for example, regulation of cell proliferation, mitochondrial enzyme activity and antioxidant capacity in hBSMC, and analyzed the involvement of major cytokine signaling pathways. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: HBSMC cultures were set up from bladder tissue of patients undergoing cystectomy and stimulated with palmitate. We analyzed cell proliferation, mitochondrial enzyme activity, and antioxidant capacity by ELISA and confocal immunofluorescence. In signal transduction inhibition experiments we evaluated the involvement of NF-κB, JAK/STAT, MEK1, PI3K, and JNK in major cytokine signaling pathway regulation. We found: (i palmitate decreased cell proliferation, increased mitochondrial enzyme activity and antioxidant capacity; (ii direct inhibition of cytokine receptor by AG490 even more strongly suppressed cell proliferation in palmitate-stimulated cells, while counteracting palmitate-induced increase of antioxidant capacity; (iii in contrast knockdown of the STAT3 inhibitor SOCS3 increased cell proliferation and antioxidant capacity; (iv further downstream JAK/STAT3 signaling cascade the inhibition of PI3K or JNK enhanced palmitate induced suppression of cell proliferation; (v increase of mitochondrial enzyme activity by palmitate was enhanced by inhibition of PI3K but counteracted by inhibition of MEK1. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Saturated free fatty acids (e.g., palmitate cause massive alterations in vital cell functions of cultured hBSMC involving distinct major cytokine signaling pathways. Thereby

  5. A High Power-Density Mediator-Free Microfluidic Biophotovoltaic Device for Cyanobacterial Cells

    CERN Document Server

    Bombelli, Paolo; Herling, Therese W; Howe, Christopher J; Knowles, Tuomas P J


    Biophotovoltaics has emerged as a promising technology for generating renewable energy since it relies on living organisms as inexpensive, self-repairing and readily available catalysts to produce electricity from an abundant resource - sunlight. The efficiency of biophotovoltaic cells, however, has remained significantly lower than that achievable through synthetic materials. Here, we devise a platform to harness the large power densities afforded by miniaturised geometries. To this effect, we have developed a soft-lithography approach for the fabrication of microfluidic biophotovoltaic devices that do not require membranes or mediators. Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 cells were injected and allowed to settle on the anode, permitting the physical proximity between cells and electrode required for mediator-free operation. We demonstrate power densities of above 100 mW/m2 for a chlorophyll concentration of 100 {\\mu}M under white light, a high value for biophotovoltaic devices without extrinsic supply of additional...

  6. Label-Free Imaging and Biochemical Characterization of Bovine Sperm Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Antonietta Ferrara


    Full Text Available A full label-free morphological and biochemical characterization is desirable to select spermatozoa during preparation for artificial insemination. In order to study these fundamental parameters, we take advantage of two attractive techniques: digital holography (DH and Raman spectroscopy (RS. DH presents new opportunities for studying morphological aspect of cells and tissues non-invasively, quantitatively and without the need for staining or tagging, while RS is a very specific technique allowing the biochemical analysis of cellular components with a spatial resolution in the sub-micrometer range. In this paper, morphological and biochemical bovine sperm cell alterations were studied using these techniques. In addition, a complementary DH and RS study was performed to identify X- and Y-chromosome-bearing sperm cells. We demonstrate that the two techniques together are a powerful and highly efficient tool elucidating some important criterions for sperm morphological selection and sex-identification, overcoming many of the limitations associated with existing protocols.

  7. Free energy difference in indolicidin attraction to eukaryotic and prokaryotic model cell membranes. (United States)

    Yeh, In-Chul; Ripoll, Daniel R; Wallqvist, Anders


    We analyzed the thermodynamic and structural determinants of indolicidin interactions with eukaryotic and prokaryotic cell membranes using a series of atomistically detailed molecular dynamics simulations. We used quartz-supported bilayers with two different compositions of zwitterionic and anionic phospholipids as model eukaryotic and prokaryotic cell membranes. Indolicidin was preferentially attracted to the model prokaryotic cell membrane in contrast to the weak adsorption on the eukaryotic membrane. The nature of the indolicidin surface adsorption depended on an electrostatic guiding component, an attractive enthalpic component derived from van der Waals interactions, and a balance between entropic factors related to peptide confinement at the interface and counterion release from the bilayer surface. Thus, whereas we attributed the specificity of the indolicidin/membrane interaction to electrostatics, these interactions were not the sole contributors to the free energy of adsorption. Instead, a balance between an attractive van der Waals enthalpic component and a repulsive entropic component determined the overall strength of indolicidin adsorption.

  8. Nanosensors for label-free measurement of sodium ion fluxes of neuronal cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gebinoga, Michael, E-mail: [ZIK MacroNano Microfluidics and Biosensors, Technical University Ilmenau, P.O. Box 100565, D-98684 Ilmenau (Germany); Silveira, Liele; Cimalla, Irina [ZIK MacroNano Microfluidics and Biosensors, Technical University Ilmenau, P.O. Box 100565, D-98684 Ilmenau (Germany); Dumitrescu, Andreea [University of Pennsylvania - School of Engineering and Applied Science, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6391 (United States); Kittler, Mario; Luebbers, Benedikt; Becker, Annette [ZIK MacroNano Microfluidics and Biosensors, Technical University Ilmenau, P.O. Box 100565, D-98684 Ilmenau (Germany); Lebedev, Vadim [Fraunhofer Institute for Solid State Physics, Tullastr. 7, D-79108 Freiburg (Germany); Schober, Andreas [ZIK MacroNano Microfluidics and Biosensors, Technical University Ilmenau, P.O. Box 100565, D-98684 Ilmenau (Germany)


    Novel nanosensors based on aluminium gallium nitrides (AlGaN/GaN) high electron mobility transistors have been of high interest during the last years, especially for their electrical characteristics as open gate field effect transistors. These nanosensors provide a valuable tool for high content screening in drug discovery, cell monitoring and liquid analyses focusing on applications of electrochemical detection technology. Our own measurements with these sensors confirm their pH sensitivity and in addition the possibility of detection of other ions in aqueous media. These measurements deal with the reactions of NG 108-15 (mouse neuroblastoma x rat glioma hybrid) neuronal cells in response to different acetylcholinesterase inhibitors. Our experimental approach shows some advantages. The first advantage is the label-free measurement of ion fluxes, and another advantage is the possibility non-destructively to estimate cell signals.

  9. Nickel Phosphide as a Copper Free Back Contact for CdTe-Based Solar Cells (United States)

    Sunderland, Brian; Gupta, Akhlesh; Compaan, Alvin D.


    Nickel phosphide back contacts were deposited onto polycrystalline, thin-film, CdS/CdTe solar cells using DC magnetron sputtering. The effects of the etching procedure, substrate temperature, deposition duration, post-deposition diffusion temperature, and ambient on the initial performance and on the long term stability of the devices were studied. We found that the initial performance of nickel phosphide contacts was lower than typical Cu-based back contacts. However, the stability of the cells at open circuit under one-sun light soak for several months is better than for our standard contact with evaporated Cu and Au. The use of sputtered graphite as an interfacial layer improved the performance. Average efficiencies of over 8.6were achieved. The excellent stability makes Ni2P an attractive candidate for a Cu-free back contact to CdTe-based solar cells. Work supported by NREL and by NSF-REU.

  10. Development of an Analytical System for Determination of Free Acid via a Joint Method Combining Density and Conductivity Measurement

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Determination of free acid plays an important role in spent nuclear fuel reprocessing. It is necessary to develop a rapid analytical device and method for measuring free acid. A novel analytical system and method was studied to monitor the acidity

  11. Serum-Free Generation of Multipotent Mesoderm (Kdr-positive) Progenitor Cells in Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells For Functional Genomics Screening



    This unit describes a robust protocol for producing multipotent Kdr-expressing mesoderm progenitor cells in serum-free conditions and functional genomics screening using these cells. Kdr-positive cells are known to be able to differentiate into a wide array of mesoderm derivatives including, vascular endothelial cells, cardiomyocytes, hematopietic progenitors and smooth muscle cells. The efficient generation of such progenitor cells is of particular interest because it permits subsequent step...

  12. Smoothed Biasing Forces Yield Unbiased Free Energies with the Extended-System Adaptive Biasing Force Method. (United States)

    Lesage, Adrien; Lelièvre, Tony; Stoltz, Gabriel; Hénin, Jérôme


    We report a theoretical description and numerical tests of the extended-system adaptive biasing force method (eABF), together with an unbiased estimator of the free energy surface from eABF dynamics. Whereas the original ABF approach uses its running estimate of the free energy gradient as the adaptive biasing force, eABF is built on the idea that the exact free energy gradient is not necessary for efficient exploration, and that it is still possible to recover the exact free energy separately with an appropriate estimator. eABF does not directly bias the collective coordinates of interest, but rather fictitious variables that are harmonically coupled to them; therefore is does not require second derivative estimates, making it easily applicable to a wider range of problems than ABF. Furthermore, the extended variables present a smoother, coarse-grain-like sampling problem on a mollified free energy surface, leading to faster exploration and convergence. We also introduce CZAR, a simple, unbiased free energy estimator from eABF trajectories. eABF/CZAR converges to the physical free energy surface faster than standard ABF for a wide range of parameters.

  13. Cell-associated hemolytic activity in environmenta