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Sample records for cells precocious improvement

  1. Precocious pseudopuberty due to juvenile granulosa cell tumor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Saeed, G.A.; Farooq, N.

    2003-01-01

    A case of precocious puberty occurring in a young girl is presented. Vaginal bleeding and secondary sexual characteristics had occurred at 7 years of age associated with an abdominal mass. These findings were due to a functional juvenile granulosa cell tumor in the right ovary. Right adenectomy was performed. Histopathology was confirmatory. (author)

  2. True precocious puberty following treatment of a Leydig cell tumour: two case reports and literature review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alberto eVerrotti

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Leydig cell testicular tumours are a rare cause of precocious pseudopuberty in boys. Surgery is the main therapy and shows good overall prognosis. The physical signs of precocious puberty are expected to disappear shortly after surgical removal of the mass. We report two children, 7.5 and 7.7 year-old boys, who underwent testis-sparing surgery for a Leydig cell testicular tumour causing precocious pseudopuberty. During follow-up, after an immediate clinical and laboratory regression, both boys presented signs of precocious puberty and ultimately developed central precocious puberty. They were successfully treated with gonadotropin releasing hormone analogues. Only 6 other cases have been described regarding the development of central precocious puberty after successful treatment of a Leydig cell tumour causing precocious pseudo puberty. Gonadotropin-dependent precocious puberty should be considered in children treated for a Leydig cell tumour presenting persistent or recurrent physical signs of puberty activation. In such cases, therapy with gonadotropin releasing hormone analogues appears to be the most effective medical treatment.

  3. Central precocious puberty and granulosa cell ovarian tumor in an 8-year old female

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    Valeria Calcaterra

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Ovarian tumors associated with hormonal changes of the peripheral iso-sexual precocious puberty are of common presentation. We describe here a rare case of juvenile granulosa cell tumor in a female with central precocious puberty (CPP. An 8-year old girl with CPP presented with vaginal bleeding four months after the diagnosis and before starting treatment with gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH-analogs. Suppression of basal follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH level, elevation of serum estradiol, progesterone and Cancer Antigen-125 were documented. Abdominal ultrasound examination (US and magnetic resonance imaging showed a pelvic mass affecting the left ovary. A left salpingo-oophorectomy was performed and the mass was totally resected. Juvenile granulosa cell ovarian tumor was diagnosed. One month post surgery, estradiol and progesterone decreased to values of the first evaluation and FSH increased; Cancer Antigen-125 resulted normal while ultrasound pelvic examination showed absence of pelvic masses. In our patient, the tumor had grown very quickly since hormonal data demonstrated a CPP without any evidence of ovarian mass on US only four months before diagnosis. The overstimulation of the FSH or aberrant activation of FSH receptors may have contributed to the development of the mass.

  4. Precocious puberty

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... provider if: Your child shows signs of precocious puberty Any child with early sexual development appears to be having problems in school or with peers Alternative Names Pubertas praecox Images Endocrine glands Male and female reproductive systems References Garibaldi L, Chemaitilly ...

  5. Chronic interleukin-1 exposure drives haematopoietic stem cells towards precocious myeloid differentiation at the expense of self-renewal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pietras, Eric M; Mirantes-Barbeito, Cristina; Fong, Sarah; Loeffler, Dirk; Kovtonyuk, Larisa V; Zhang, SiYi; Lakshminarasimhan, Ranjani; Chin, Chih Peng; Techner, José-Marc; Will, Britta; Nerlov, Claus; Steidl, Ulrich; Manz, Markus G; Schroeder, Timm; Passegué, Emmanuelle

    2016-06-01

    Haematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) maintain lifelong blood production and increase blood cell numbers in response to chronic and acute injury. However, the mechanism(s) by which inflammatory insults are communicated to HSCs and their consequences for HSC activity remain largely unknown. Here, we demonstrate that interleukin-1 (IL-1), which functions as a key pro-inflammatory 'emergency' signal, directly accelerates cell division and myeloid differentiation of HSCs through precocious activation of a PU.1-dependent gene program. Although this effect is essential for rapid myeloid recovery following acute injury to the bone marrow, chronic IL-1 exposure restricts HSC lineage output, severely erodes HSC self-renewal capacity, and primes IL-1-exposed HSCs to fail massive replicative challenges such as transplantation. Importantly, these damaging effects are transient and fully reversible on IL-1 withdrawal. Our results identify a critical regulatory circuit that tailors HSC responses to acute needs, and is likely to underlie deregulated blood homeostasis in chronic inflammation conditions.

  6. Precocious puberty secondary to a mixed germ cell-sex cord-stromal tumor associated with an ovarian yolk sac tumor: a case report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Metwalley Kotb

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Introduction Ovarian tumors are the least common cause of sexual precocity in girls. Mixed germ cell-sex cord-stromal tumors associated with a yolk sac tumor of the ovary are rare neoplasms, of which only a small number of well-documented cases have been described so far. Here, we report precocious puberty in a four-year-old Egyptian girl caused by a mixed germ cell-sex cord-stromal tumor associated with a yolk sac tumor of the ovary. Case presentation A four-year-old Egyptian girl was referred to our pediatric endocrinology unit for evaluation of bilateral breast budding, pubic hair and vaginal bleeding. On examination, we found that her breast enlargement and pubic hair were compatible with Tanner III. A thorough workup revealed a large mass in her right ovary. Magnetic resonance imaging ofher brain showed that her pituitary gland was normal. A hormonal assay revealed high levels of estradiol, 280 to 375pmol/L; progesterone, 5.3 nmol/L; testosterone 38.9 pg/mL; and androstenedione, 4.1 ng/mL. Her basal and stimulated levels of luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone were low. Tumor markers levels were high, with a total inhibin of 1,069U/L and an alpha-fetoprotein of 987 μg/L. Her chromosomes were normal (46XX. Our patient underwent an explorative laparotomy and a solid tumor localized to her right ovary was identified. A right salpingo-oophorectomy was performed and the histopathological diagnosis was a mixed germ cell-sex cord-stromal tumorwith a yolk sac tumor of the ovary. Postoperatively, she was started on treatment with chemotherapy. Our patient is doing well without evidence of tumor recurrence or metastasis during eight months of postoperative follow-up. Conclusion Although a mixed germ cell-sex cord-stromal tumor associated with a yolk sac tumor of the ovary is a rare occurrence, it should be considered in the differential diagnosis for a prepubescent girl with an abdominal mass and precocious puberty.

  7. Cell-free antigens from precocious Paracoccidioides brasiliensis culture induce a typical delayed-type hypersensitivity reaction

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    Fecchio CJ

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Cell-free antigens (CFAg derived from Paracoccidioides brasiliensis have typically been used in immunodiffusion reactions for serodiagnosis or therapeutic follow-up of paracoccidioidomycosis patients. Thus, we investigated the usefulness of CFAg obtained from cultures at different ages, to evaluate cellular immunity by the footpad test, in experimental murine paracoccidioidomycosis. Male mice infected with P. brasiliensis 265 strain were challenged in the footpad with CFAg obtained from four- (4d CFAg or 11-day-old cultures (11d CFAg. The increase in footpad swelling provoked by 4d CFAg and 11d CFAg was similar and showed significant difference in relation to control groups. However, the infiltrate pattern was strikingly different: 4d CFAg induced a predominant mononuclear infiltrate whereas 11d CFAg provoked a predominant polymophonuclear infiltrate. These different inflammatory patterns were associated with distinct electrophoretic characteristics. By comparison with 11d CFAg, 4d CFAg showed more numerous and intense bands, including a strong one of 43 kDa (gp43. These results suggest that CFAg derived from Pb 265 isolate can be used as a reagent to evaluate cellular immunity; however, the culture's age is critical because only young cultures are able to induce a typical mononuclear infiltrate. The efficacy of this new paracoccidioidin to assay the cellular immunity in infections caused by other P. brasiliensis isolates is under investigation.

  8. Presentation of Three Patients with Testicular Tumor and Precocious Pseudopuberty

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martinez Feria, Rafael; Mulet Ochoa, Ignacio; Motes Velazquez, Martha; Garcia Cuevas, Naivis; Garcia Cuevas, Niuris

    2009-01-01

    Three children that were assisted at Pediatric Hospital, Endocrinology and Urology Service in Holguin between 1999 and 2003 year were diagnosed with precocious pseudopuberty caused by Leydig interstitial cells tumors. Surgical treatment was given. Inguinal orchiectomy of the affected testis was done which stopped genital growth and partial reversion of virilization. Postoperative evolution was satisfactory. (author)

  9. Precocious quantitative cognition in monkeys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrigno, Stephen; Hughes, Kelly D; Cantlon, Jessica F

    2016-02-01

    Basic quantitative abilities are thought to have an innate basis in humans partly because the ability to discriminate quantities emerges early in child development. If humans and nonhuman primates share this developmentally primitive foundation of quantitative reasoning, then this ability should be present early in development across species and should emerge earlier in monkeys than in humans because monkeys mature faster than humans. We report that monkeys spontaneously make accurate quantity choices by 1 year of age in a task that human children begin to perform only at 2.5 to 3 years of age. Additionally, we report that the quantitative sensitivity of infant monkeys is equal to that of the adult animals in their group and that rates of learning do not differ between infant and adult animals. This novel evidence of precocious quantitative reasoning in infant monkeys suggests that human quantitative reasoning shares its early developing foundation with other primates. The data further suggest that early developing components of primate quantitative reasoning are constrained by maturational factors related to genetic development as opposed to learning experience alone.

  10. Gonadothropin-releasing hormone agonist as a treatment of choice for central precocious puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose R.L. Batubara

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Precocious puberty is defi ned as pubertal development which occurs too early. The age limit in this term is based on the onset of puberty in normal population. Some points have to be taken into account, such as ethnicity, gender, nutritional conditions, and secular trends. In girls, precocious puberty is defi ned by breast development occured before 8 years old. In boys, precocious puberty is defi ned as gonadarche or pubarche before 9 years of age. The clinical course of precocious puberty varies widely, ranging from alternating, slowly progressive, and rapidly progressive    form. The rapidly progressive forms of idiopathic central precocious puberty need to be treated because it may result in early epiphyseal closure and short fi nal height, and also pyschosocial problems in the affected children and the family. The aims of treatment are to arrest physical maturation, prevent early menarche, and also improve adult height combined with normal body proportions. Gonadotropin releasing hormone analogue is the treatment of choice for central precocious puberty. Gonadotropin releasing horomone analogue has suppressive effect on the pituitarygonadal axis, therefore it suppresses LH secretion. This leads to the return of estradiol and testosterone to prepubertal levels. Treatment using gonadotropin releasing horomone analogue is shown to reduce breast size, pubic hair, ovarian and uterine size in girls, and decrease testicular size in boys. Gonadotropin releasing hormone analogue is effective in halting progression of secondary sexual characteristics development, presenting menstrual cycle, slowing bone-age advancement, and also improving fi nal height. (Med J Indones 2010; 19:287-92Keywords: gonadache, GRH analogue, pubarche , precocious puberty

  11. Prostate specific antigen in boys with precocious puberty before and during gonadal suppression by GnRH agonist treatment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Juul, A; Müller, J; Skakkebaek, N E

    1997-01-01

    antigen (PSA) is a marker of the androgen-dependent prostatic epithelial cell activity and it is used in the diagnosis and surveillance of adult patients with prostatic cancer. We have measured PSA concentrations in serum from boys with precocious puberty before and during gonadal suppression with Gn......RH agonists to evaluate the effect of normal and precocious puberty on PSA levels and to study the correlation between testosterone and PSA in boys....

  12. Orexin A and Central Precocious Puberty

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    Abdinasir Sharif Isse

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Orexin A and orexin B are neuropeptides that control appetite and play an important role in energy homeostasis. Central precocious puberty (CPP is an energy consuming process, which characterized as GnRH neurons activated in advance. Kisspeptin is a trigger of GnRH neurons activation, known as a milestone of puberty initiating. Maternally expressed gene 3 (MEG3 is an imprinted long non-coding RNAs (LncRNAs, which is highly expressed in the brain and pituitary gland, may involve in pituitary hyperplasia of CPP. In this review, we searched literature to clarify the possible relationship between orexin A and CPP

  13. Idiopathic Central Precocious Puberty Associated with 11 Mb De Novo Distal Deletion of the Chromosome 9 Short Arm

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    Mariangela Cisternino

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We report a girl with a de novo distal deletion of 9p affected by idiopathic central precocious puberty and intellectual disability. Genome-wide array-CGH revealed a terminal deletion of about 11 Mb, allowing to define her karyotype as 46; XX, del(9(p23-pter. To our knowledge, this is the second reported case of precocious puberty associated with 9p distal deletion. A third case associates precocious puberty with a more proximal 9p deletion del(9(p12p13,3. In our case, more than 40 genes were encompassed in the deleted region, among which, DMRT1 which is gonad-specific and has a sexually dimorphic expression pattern and ERMP1 which is required in rats for the organization of somatic cells and oocytes into discrete follicular structures. Although we cannot exclude that precocious puberty in our del(9p patient is a coincidental finding, the report of the other two patients with 9p deletions and precocious puberty indeed suggests a causative relationship.

  14. Genetics Home Reference: familial male-limited precocious puberty

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... precocious puberty is a condition that causes early sexual development in males; females are not affected. Boys with ... including testosterone, are the hormones that control male sexual development and reproduction. In females, luteinizing hormone triggers the ...

  15. Adolescent Violent Victimization and Precocious Union Formation*

    Science.gov (United States)

    C. Kuhl, Danielle; Warner, David F.; Wilczak, Andrew

    2013-01-01

    This article bridges scholarship in criminology and family sociology by extending arguments about “precocious exits” from adolescence to consider early union formation as a salient outcome of violent victimization for youths. Research indicates that early union formation is associated with several negative outcomes; yet the absence of attention to union formation as a consequence of violent victimization is noteworthy. We address this gap by drawing on life course theory and data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health) to examine the effect of violent victimization (“street” violence) on the timing of first co-residential union formation—differentiating between marriage and cohabitation—in young adulthood. Estimates from Cox proportional hazard models show that adolescent victims of street violence experience higher rates of first union formation, especially marriage, early in the transition to adulthood; however, this effect declines with age, as such unions become more normative. Importantly, the effect of violent victimization on first union timing is robust to controls for nonviolent delinquency, substance abuse, and violent perpetration. We conclude by discussing directions for future research on the association between violent victimization and coresidential unions with an eye toward the implications of such early union formation for desistance. PMID:24431471

  16. Adolescent Violent Victimization and Precocious Union Formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    C Kuhl, Danielle; Warner, David F; Wilczak, Andrew

    2012-11-01

    This article bridges scholarship in criminology and family sociology by extending arguments about "precocious exits" from adolescence to consider early union formation as a salient outcome of violent victimization for youths. Research indicates that early union formation is associated with several negative outcomes; yet the absence of attention to union formation as a consequence of violent victimization is noteworthy. We address this gap by drawing on life course theory and data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health) to examine the effect of violent victimization ("street" violence) on the timing of first co-residential union formation-differentiating between marriage and cohabitation-in young adulthood. Estimates from Cox proportional hazard models show that adolescent victims of street violence experience higher rates of first union formation, especially marriage, early in the transition to adulthood; however, this effect declines with age, as such unions become more normative. Importantly, the effect of violent victimization on first union timing is robust to controls for nonviolent delinquency, substance abuse, and violent perpetration. We conclude by discussing directions for future research on the association between violent victimization and coresidential unions with an eye toward the implications of such early union formation for desistance.

  17. Orbiter fuel cell improvement assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, R.E.

    1981-08-01

    The history of fuel cells and the theory of fuel cells is given. Expressions for thermodynamic and electrical efficiencies are developed. The voltage losses due to electrode activation, ohmic resistance and ionic diffusion are discussed. Present limitations of the Orbiter Fuel Cell, as well as proposed enhancements, are given. These enhancements are then evaluated and recommendations are given for fuel cell enhancement both for short-range as well as long-range performance improvement. Estimates of reliability and cost savings are given for enhancements where possible

  18. [Peripheral precocious puberty: 46, XY complete gonadal dysgenesis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santalha, M; Amaral, B; Pereira, J; Ribeiro, L; João Oliveira, M; Figueiredo, S; Cardoso, H; Peixoto, C; Borges, T; Cidade-Rodrigues, J A

    2014-10-01

    Despite standard clinical definitions and availability of diagnostic tests for precocious puberty, an intensive and structured investigation is needed in order to diagnose the aetiology in particular cases. A 4-year-old, phenotypically female child was referred to paediatric endocrinology consultation for premature pubarche and thelarche. There was an acceleration of growth velocity with high levels of estradiol and testosterone, and prepubertal FSH and LH measurements. Investigation showed bilateral gonadoblastoma as the cause of the peripheral precocious puberty. Genetic studies revealed 46 XY karyotype with mutation c.89G> T (p.Arg30Ile) in exon 1 of the SRY gene, confirming the diagnosis of complete gonadal dysgenesis. Disorders of sexual differentiation must be considered in the approach and investigation of peripheral precocious puberty, especially in the presence of ovarian tumours, such as gonadoblastoma and dysgerminoma. Copyright © 2013 Asociación Española de Pediatría. Published by Elsevier Espana. All rights reserved.

  19. How Do Health Care Providers Diagnose Precocious Puberty and Delayed Puberty?

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Share Facebook Twitter Pinterest Email Print How do health care providers diagnose precocious puberty & delayed puberty? To identify ... and analyzing his or her medical history, a health care provider may perform tests to diagnose precocious puberty, ...

  20. Serum levels of growth hormone binding protein in children with normal and precocious puberty

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Juul, A; Fisker, Sidse; Scheike, Thomas Harder

    2000-01-01

    To study the regulation of GHBP serum levels by gonadal steroids in normal and precocious puberty.......To study the regulation of GHBP serum levels by gonadal steroids in normal and precocious puberty....

  1. Prevalence and incidence of precocious pubertal development in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Teilmann, Grete; Pedersen, Carsten; Jensen, Tina Kold

    2005-01-01

    To our knowledge, no population-based epidemiologic studies on the incidence and prevalence of precocious pubertal development have been published. Danish national registries provide sufficient data for estimating the prevalence and incidence of this condition. The aim of this study was to estima...

  2. Idiopathic central precocious puberty in a Nigerian boy

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The first physical changes of puberty (usually breast growth in girls ... precocious puberty). A striking female predominance, approximately 10:1 in most series, has been noted for the idiopathic category.6 Less common, GnRH-itidependent causes of ... axillary hair, acne and hoarseness of voice followed six months. , later.

  3. Idiopathic central precocious puberty in a Nigerian boy | Ojukwu ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Despite the overwhelming problems of malnutrition and infectious diseases in our environment, clinicians must have a high index of suspicion for endocrine disorders. Key words: Precocious puberty, Idiopathic, Central, Male, Abakaliki, Nigeria. Résumé Le cas d'une puberté précoce idiopathique centrale, une affection rare ...

  4. Prostate specific antigen in boys with precocious puberty before and during gonadal suppression by GnRH agonist treatment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Juul, A; Müller, J; Skakkebaek, N E

    1997-01-01

    In healthy boys, the pituitary-gonadal axis exhibits diurnal variation in early puberty. Serum testosterone levels are higher during the night and low or immeasurable during the day. These fluctuating levels of circulating androgens in early pubertal boys are difficult to monitor. Prostate specific...... antigen (PSA) is a marker of the androgen-dependent prostatic epithelial cell activity and it is used in the diagnosis and surveillance of adult patients with prostatic cancer. We have measured PSA concentrations in serum from boys with precocious puberty before and during gonadal suppression with Gn......RH agonists to evaluate the effect of normal and precocious puberty on PSA levels and to study the correlation between testosterone and PSA in boys....

  5. The Mathematically Precocious: Male or Female?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox, Lynn H.

    At puberty differences in ability and interest in mathematics between the sexes appear, and they increase with age. This paper describes a special algebra workshop for gifted seventh-grade girls which was designed to improve their competence and accelerate their progress in mathematics, and to increase their awareness of career opportunities in…

  6. VACCINATON TRIAL AGAINST EIMERIA MAGNA COCCIDIOSIS USING A PRECOCIOUS LINE.

    OpenAIRE

    DROUET-VlARD, F.; COUDERT, P.; LICOIS, D.; BOIVIN, M.

    1997-01-01

    [EN] Thirty six 25-day-old suckling rabbits and thirty six 29-day-old rabbits weaned sin59 one day ytere orally vaccinated with one of the two doses (3.5 x 10 or 3.5 x 10 oocysts) of a precocious line of Eimeria magna. Only the groups vaccinated with the hi11hest dose displayed a vaccine reaction, but without diarrhea or mortality. A vaccination totaly or incompletely protected against disease, assessed by daily growyh rate patterns, according to the dose given a~d reduced w...

  7. Bacterial cells with improved tolerance to polyamines

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2017-01-01

    Provided are bacterial cells genetically modified to improve their tolerance to certain commodity chemicals, such as polyamines, and methods of preparing and using such bacterial cells for production of polyamines and other compounds....

  8. Bacterial cells with improved tolerance to polyols

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2017-01-01

    The present invention relates to bacterial cells genetically modified to improve their tolerance to certain commodity chemicals, such as diols and other polyols, and to methods of preparing and using such bacterial cells for production of polyols and other compounds....

  9. Etiology of precocious puberty, 10 years study in Endocrine Reserch Centre (Firouzgar, Tehran

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    Fatemeh Safari

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Precocious puberty, as early physical development and low final height might lead to psychosocial problems.Objective: To evaluate etiology and clinical feature of precocious puberty in a cohort of Iranian children.Materials and Methods: In this case-series study, 44 girls and 8 boys with precocious puberty referred to Endocrine Reserch Centre (Firouzgar, Institute of Endocrinology and Metabolism (Hemmat Campus, were examined in a 10 years period of time. Results: Mean age of girls and boys was 7.43±1.4 years and 5.8±2.1 years respectively. Most of the patients fell within the age category of 7-7.9 years old (40.9% for girls and 50% for boys. Patients, concerning etiology of precocious puberty were classified in three categories: 42.6% of patients had central precocious puberty (CPP, including idiopathic CPP (87.5% and neurogenic CPP (12.5%. 23.3% of patients had peripheral precocious puberty (PPP, including congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH (42.8%, ovarian cysts (28.4%, McCune-Albright syndrome (14.2% and adrenal carcinoma (14.2%. 34.1% of girls and 25% of boys had normal variant puberty including premature thelarche (57%, premature adrenarche (38% as well as premature menarche (4.7%l. Conclusion: The most common etiology of precocious puberty in girls was idiopathic central precocious puberty and premature thelarche, while in boys they were neurogenic central precocious puberty and CAH. Therefore precocious puberty in girls is usually benign. In boys, CNS anomalies should first be considered in the differential diagnosis of CPP. Therefore brain Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI is mandatory in all cases.

  10. Marked geographic patterns in the incidence of idiopathic central precocious puberty: a nationwide study in France.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Moal, Joëlle; Rigou, Annabel; Le Tertre, Alain; De Crouy-Channel, Perrine; Léger, Juliane; Carel, Jean-Claude

    2018-01-01

    Precocious puberty seems to be increasing but epidemiological data are scarce. Our objective was to improve the epidemiologic knowledge on this disease. We analyzed the national incidence and spatial trends of idiopathic central precocious puberty in France in 2011-2013 in a cross-sectional descriptive study. We used an indicator based on treatment reimbursements recorded in the national insurance database, in girls under the age of nine years and in boys under the age of 10 years. We considered a time lag of up to one year from the onset of puberty to first drug delivery. We tested four different predictive spatial models at the département scale, selecting the model best fitting the data. We carried out semi-structured interviews with qualified hospital teams in five selected regions to investigate spatial differences in medical practices. The national annual incidence was 2.68 (95% CI: 2.55, 2.81) per 10 000 girls under the age of 9 years and 0.24 (95% CI: 0.21, 0.27) per 10 000 boys under the age of 10 years. Incidence rates conformed to a purely spatial heterogeneity model in girls, consistent between age groups, with a large incidence range. A similar pattern was observed for boys, with peaks in the South West and Center East. Differences in medical practices may have slightly affected incidence locally, but could not entirely explain the marked geographic pattern. The results suggest that the risk factors are similar for boys and girls and justify further investigations of the role of the environment. © 2018 European Society of Endocrinology.

  11. The lack of autophagy triggers precocious activation of Notch signaling during Drosophila oogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barth, Julia M I; Hafen, Ernst; Köhler, Katja

    2012-12-05

    The proper balance of autophagy, a lysosome-mediated degradation process, is indispensable for oogenesis in Drosophila. We recently demonstrated that egg development depends on autophagy in the somatic follicle cells (FC), but not in the germline cells (GCs). However, the lack of autophagy only affects oogenesis when FCs are autophagy-deficient but GCs are wild type, indicating that a dysfunctional signaling between soma and germline may be responsible for the oogenesis defects. Thus, autophagy could play an essential role in modulating signal transduction pathways during egg development. Here, we provide further evidence for the necessity of autophagy during oogenesis and demonstrate that autophagy is especially required in subsets of FCs. Generation of autophagy-deficient FCs leads to a wide range of phenotypes that are similar to mutants with defects in the classical cell-cell signaling pathways in the ovary. Interestingly, we observe that loss of autophagy leads to a precocious activation of the Notch pathway in the FCs as monitored by the expression of Cut and Hindsight, two downstream effectors of Notch signaling. Our findings point to an unexpected function for autophagy in the modulation of the Notch signaling pathway during Drosophila oogenesis and suggest a function for autophagy in proper receptor activation. Egg development is affected by an imbalance of autophagy between signal sending (germline) and signal receiving cell (FC), thus the lack of autophagy in the germline is likely to decrease the amount of active ligand and accordingly compensates for increased signaling in autophagy-defective follicle cells.

  12. Precocious scaling in antiproton-proton scattering at low energies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ion, D.B.; Petrascu, C.; Topor Pop, V.; Popa, V.

    1993-08-01

    The scaling of the diffraction peak in antiproton-proton scattering has been investigated from nera threshold up to 3 GeV/c laboratory momenta. It was shown that the scaling of the differential cross sections are evidentiated with a surprising accuracy not only at high energies, but also at very low ones (e.g. p LAB = 0.1 - 0.5 GeV/c), beyond the resonance and exotic resonance regions. This precocious scaling strongly suggests that the s-channel helicity conservation (SCHC) can be a peculiar property that should be tested in antiproton-proton interaction not only at high energies but also at low energy even below p LAB = 1 GeV/c. (author). 36 refs, 9 figs

  13. Precocious germination and its regulation in embryos of triticale caryopses

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    Stanisław Weidner

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Triticale var. Lasko embryos, isolated from grain gathered at milk ripeness, the beginning of wax ripeness and at full ripeness, were allowed to germinate for 48 h on agar with glucose. The highest incorporation of tritiated adenosine into polyribosomal RNA during germination was found in the ribosome fractions from embryos of grain gathered at full ripeness, lower incorporation was in preparations from embryos of milk ripe grain and the lowest in preparations from embryos of wax ripe grain. Different tendencies were observed in respect to the synthesis of ribosomal proteins. The highest incorporation of 14C-amino acids into ribosomal proteins was found in preparations of ribosome fractions from embryos of milk ripe grain, lower in preparations of embryos from fully ripe grain, the lowest in preparations of embryos from wax ripe grain. ABA (10-4 M completely inhibited the external symptoms of germination of immature embryos, while its inhibition of the synthesis of polyribosomal RNA and ribosomal proteins was greater the more mature the embryos that were germinated. The greatest stimulation of precocious germination by exogenous BA and GA3 was demonstrated in the least mature embryos isolated from milk ripe grain. Under the influence of both stimulators, an increase of the proportion of polyribosomes in the total ribosome fraction occurred in this sample, as did a rise in the intensity of ribosomal protein synthesis. The incorporation of 3H-adenosine into polyribosomal RNA, however, was lower than in the control sample. The results obtained suggest that the regulation of precocious germination of triticale embryos by phyto-hormones is not directly related to transcription.

  14. Improved Zirconia Oxygen-Separation Cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, John V.; Zwissler, James G.

    1988-01-01

    Cell structure distributes feed gas more evenly for more efficent oxygen production. Multilayer cell structure containing passages, channels, tubes, and pores help distribute pressure evenly over zirconia electrolytic membrane. Resulting more uniform pressure distribution expected to improve efficiency of oxygen production.

  15. A Case of a Girl with Arnold-Chiari Type 1 Malformation with Precocious Puberty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Min Sun; Hwang, Pyoung Han; Lee, Dae-Yeol

    2018-01-01

    A small percentage of individuals have the neurological anomaly of central precocious puberty (CPP). Common neurologic causes of CPP include a tumor or congenital lesions. Although Arnold-Chiari malformation can be caused by congenital or acquired causes, it is unusual in patients with CPP. We present the case of a girl aged 4.5 years who complained of breast budding. Her neurological examination and growth pattern were normal. She had no endocrinological abnormality, except for true precocious puberty. We performed brain magnetic resonance imaging, which showed an Arnold-Chiari type 1 malformation. Currently, this case represents the youngest girl who exhibited both Arnold-Chiari type 1 malformation and precocious puberty. Furthermore, it is likely that there is a meaningful association between the brain lesion and precocious puberty in this case.

  16. Insulin sensitivity and lipid profiles in girls with central precocious puberty before and during gonadal suppression

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Kaspar; Mouritsen, Annette; Mogensen, Signe Sloth

    2010-01-01

    Early menarche is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood. It is unknown whether metabolic risk factors are adversely affected in girls with central precocious puberty (CPP) already at time of diagnosis.......Early menarche is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood. It is unknown whether metabolic risk factors are adversely affected in girls with central precocious puberty (CPP) already at time of diagnosis....

  17. A missense mutation in the second transmembrane segment of the luteinizing hormone receptor causes familial male-limited precocious puberty

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kraaij, R.; Post, M.; Grootegoed, J.A. [Erasmus Univ. Rotterdam (Netherlands)] [and others

    1995-10-01

    Patients with familial male-limited precocious puberty present with early onset of puberty. Several missense mutations in the LH receptor gene that cause amino acid substitutions in the sixth transmembrane segment of the receptor protein have been shown to be a cause of the disorder. We have identified a novel LH receptor gene mutation in a patient with familial male-limited precocious puberty that results in a threonine for methionine substitution at position 398 in the second transmembrane segment of the receptor protein. In vitro expression in human embryonic kidney 293 cells of this LH receptor mutant and two previously described LH receptor mutants showed that cAMP production in the absence of hormone was elevated up to 25-fold compared to the basal level of the wild-type receptor. The ED{sub 50} values of hormone-induced cAMP production was relatively low for mutant receptors. We also produced receptors containing amino acid substitutions in both the second and sixth transmembrane segments. For these double mutants, basal receptor activities were similar to the basal activities observed in single mutants, whereas hormone-induced receptor activation was almost completely abolished. 31 refs., 2 figs.

  18. Precocious Sister Chromatid Separation (PSCS) in Cornelia de Lange Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaur, Maninder; DeScipio, Cheryl; McCallum, Jennifer; Yaeger, Dinah; Devoto, Marcella; Jackson, Laird G.; Spinner, Nancy B.; Krantz, Ian D.

    2009-01-01

    The Cornelia de Lange syndrome (CdLS) (OMIM# 122470) is a dominantly inherited multisystem developmental disorder. The phenotype consists of characteristic facial features, hirsutism, abnormalities of the upper extremities ranging from subtle changes in the phalanges and metacarpal bones to oligodactyly and phocomelia, gastroesophageal dysfunction, growth retardation, and neurodevelopmental delay. Prevalence is estimated to be as high as 1 in 10,000. Recently, mutations in NIPBL were identified in sporadic and familial CdLS cases. To date, mutations in this gene have been identified in over 45% of individuals with CdLS. NIPBL is the human homolog of the Drosophila Nipped-B gene. Although its function in mammalian systems has not yet been elucidated, sequence homologs of Nipped-B in yeast (Scc2 and Mis4) are required for sister chromatid cohesion during mitosis, and a similar role was recently demonstrated for Nipped-B in Drosophila. In order to evaluate NIPBL role in sister chromatid cohesion in humans, metaphase spreads on 90 probands (40 NIPBL mutation positive and 50 NIPBL mutation negative) with CdLS were evaluated for evidence of precocious sister chromatid separation (PSCS). We screened 50 metaphases from each proband and found evidence of PSCS in 41% (compared to 9% in control samples). These studies indicate that NIPBL may play a role in sister chromatid cohesion in humans as has been reported for its homologs in Drosophila and yeast. PMID:16100726

  19. Precocious development of self-awareness in dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrison, Rachel; Reiss, Diana

    2018-01-01

    Mirror-self recognition (MSR) is a behavioral indicator of self-awareness in young children and only a few other species, including the great apes, dolphins, elephants and magpies. The emergence of self-awareness in children typically occurs during the second year and has been correlated with sensorimotor development and growing social and self-awareness. Comparative studies of MSR in chimpanzees report that the onset of this ability occurs between 2 years 4 months and 3 years 9 months of age. Studies of wild and captive bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) have reported precocious sensorimotor and social awareness during the first weeks of life, but no comparative MSR research has been conducted with this species. We exposed two young bottlenose dolphins to an underwater mirror and analyzed video recordings of their behavioral responses over a 3-year period. Here we report that both dolphins exhibited MSR, indicated by self-directed behavior at the mirror, at ages earlier than generally reported for children and at ages much earlier than reported for chimpanzees. The early onset of MSR in young dolphins occurs in parallel with their advanced sensorimotor development, complex and reciprocal social interactions, and growing social awareness. Both dolphins passed subsequent mark tests at ages comparable with children. Thus, our findings indicate that dolphins exhibit self-awareness at a mirror at a younger age than previously reported for children or other species tested.

  20. Experience with the once-yearly histrelin (GnRHa subcutaneous implant in the treatment of central precocious puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine A Lewis

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Katherine A Lewis, Erica A EugsterDepartment of Pediatrics, Indiana University School of Medicine, Riley Hospital for Children, Indianapolis, USAAbstract: In 2007, a hydrogel histrelin implant was approved for the treatment of children with central precocious puberty (CPP. Children with CPP commonly have reduced height potential due to premature closure of the epiphyseal growth plates from exposure to sex steroids. Gonadotropin-releasing hormone analog (GnRHa treatment halts puberty and allows for improvement of adult height. A hydrogel implant delivery system utilizing the potent GnRHa, histrelin, was first developed for use in men with prostate cancer. A once yearly histrelin subcutaneous implant was subsequently developed for the treatment of children with CPP. Studies to date have demonstrated safety, tolerability, and effectiveness of this treatment option in patients treated up to 2 years. The most common adverse effects of the implant relate to implant site pain or bruising. Cost of this treatment seems comparable to somewhat higher than the commonly used GnRHa treatment option, depot leuprolide. While long term studies are needed to establish continued efficacy and safety beyond 2 years of treatment, the histrelin implant appears to be an attractive option for GnRHa treatment in patients with CPP.Keywords: central precocious puberty, histrelin, implant, gonadotropin-releasing-hormone analogs

  1. Direct fuel cell product design improvement

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maru, H.C.; Farooque, M. [Energy Research Corp., Danbury, CT (United States)

    1996-12-31

    Significant milestones have been attained towards the technology development field testing and commercialization of direct fuel cell power plant since the 1994 Fuel Cell Seminar. Under a 5-year cooperative agreement with the Department of Energy signed in December 1994, Energy Research Corporation (ERC) has been developing the design for a MW-scale direct fuel cell power plant with input from previous technology efforts and the Santa Clara Demonstration Project. The effort encompasses product definition in consultation with the Fuel Cell Commercialization Group, potential customers, as well as extensive system design and packaging. Manufacturing process improvements, test facility construction, cell component scale up, performance and endurance improvements, stack engineering, and critical balance-of-plant development are also addressed. Major emphasis of this product design improvement project is on increased efficiency, compactness and cost reduction to establish a competitive place in the market. A 2.85 MW power plant with an efficiency of 58% and a footprint of 420 m{sup 2} has been designed. Component and subsystem testing is being conducted at various levels. Planning and preparation for verification of a full size prototype unit are in progress. This paper presents the results obtained since the last fuel cell seminar.

  2. Improved Gene Targeting through Cell Cycle Synchronization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vasiliki Tsakraklides

    Full Text Available Gene targeting is a challenge in organisms where non-homologous end-joining is the predominant form of recombination. We show that cell division cycle synchronization can be applied to significantly increase the rate of homologous recombination during transformation. Using hydroxyurea-mediated cell cycle arrest, we obtained improved gene targeting rates in Yarrowia lipolytica, Arxula adeninivorans, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Kluyveromyces lactis and Pichia pastoris demonstrating the broad applicability of the method. Hydroxyurea treatment enriches for S-phase cells that are active in homologous recombination and enables previously unattainable genomic modifications.

  3. The lack of autophagy triggers precocious activation of Notch signaling during Drosophila oogenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barth Julia MI

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The proper balance of autophagy, a lysosome-mediated degradation process, is indispensable for oogenesis in Drosophila. We recently demonstrated that egg development depends on autophagy in the somatic follicle cells (FC, but not in the germline cells (GCs. However, the lack of autophagy only affects oogenesis when FCs are autophagy-deficient but GCs are wild type, indicating that a dysfunctional signaling between soma and germline may be responsible for the oogenesis defects. Thus, autophagy could play an essential role in modulating signal transduction pathways during egg development. Results Here, we provide further evidence for the necessity of autophagy during oogenesis and demonstrate that autophagy is especially required in subsets of FCs. Generation of autophagy-deficient FCs leads to a wide range of phenotypes that are similar to mutants with defects in the classical cell-cell signaling pathways in the ovary. Interestingly, we observe that loss of autophagy leads to a precocious activation of the Notch pathway in the FCs as monitored by the expression of Cut and Hindsight, two downstream effectors of Notch signaling. Conclusion Our findings point to an unexpected function for autophagy in the modulation of the Notch signaling pathway during Drosophila oogenesis and suggest a function for autophagy in proper receptor activation. Egg development is affected by an imbalance of autophagy between signal sending (germline and signal receiving cell (FC, thus the lack of autophagy in the germline is likely to decrease the amount of active ligand and accordingly compensates for increased signaling in autophagy-defective follicle cells.

  4. Factors related to the occurrence of precocious menarche in female primary school students in Makassar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renjani, Rizky Swastika; Mappaware, Nasrudin A.; Nontji, Werna; Marniati

    2017-09-01

    Precocious menarche currently affects 1 in 5000 girls and likely to occur as many as 10 times and possess greater risk to the emergence of cancer in women. The aim of this research is to determine the relationship of nutrition status and lipid profile with precocious menarche occurrence onstudents of primary school in Makassar city. The design of this research was cross sectional design. The samples werethe students of grades IV, V and VI who have already menarche occurrence as many as 20 studentscollected with purposive sampling. The data were analyzed with Mann Whitney U test. The results indicate that there are 17 students (85%) do not undergoprecocious menarche, normal nutrition status is 11 persons (55%), normal cholesterol levelis 12 persons (60%), and level of normal LDL = 19 persons (95%). While the respondents who undergo precocious menarche is 3 persons (15%), fat nutrition status is 9 persons (45%), cautious cholesterol level is 8 persons (40%) and cautious LDL level is 1 person (5%). Based on Mann Whitney U test, there is relationship between nutrition status and precocious menarche occurrence (p = 0.043) and there is correlation of total cholesterol and LDLcholesterollevelswith precocious menarche (p = 0.025) and (p = 0.017). The decrease of knowledge about health of reproduction can be promoted in school by making cooperation with nutritionist to give information to parents and students of primary schools about good and healthy food.

  5. A single sample GnRHa stimulation test in the diagnosis of precocious puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yazdani Parvin

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Context Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH has been the standard test for diagnosing central precocious puberty. Because GnRH is no longer available, GnRH analogues (GnRHa are now used. Random LH concentration, measured by the third-generation immunochemiluminometric assay, is a useful screening tool for central precocious puberty. However, GnRHa stimulation test should be considered, when a basal LH measurement is inconclusive. However optimal sampling times for luteinizing hormone (LH have yet to be established. Purpose To determine the appropriate sampling time for LH post leuprolide challenge. Methods A retrospective analysis of multi-sample GnRHa stimulation tests performed in 155 children (aged 1–9 years referred for precocious puberty to Texas Children’s Hospital. After 20 mcg/kg of SQ leuprolide acetate, samples were obtained at 0, 1, 3, and 6 hours. Results Of 71 children with clinical evidence of central precocious puberty, fifty nine children had a peak LH >5 mIU/mL. 52 (88% of these responders had positive responses at 1 hour (95% CI is 80–96%, whereas all 59 children (100% had a peak LH response >5 mIU/mL at 3 hours (95% CI is 94-100%, P = 0.005. Conclusions A single serum LH sample collected 3 hours post GnRHa challenge is the optimal sample to establish the diagnosis of central precocious puberty.

  6. Improved premises for cell factory development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Søgaard, Karina Marie

    by a differential expression of the lysozyme gene encoded on the same plasmid. These phenomena seem to have been largely overlooked despite the huge popularity of the T7/pet-based systems for bacterial protein production. Additionally, the paradox that standardization comes at the cost of reduced flexibility...... is at the core of biotechnology and numerous molecular tools and bacterial strains have been developed over the past four decades for this purpose. Understanding of the genetic code and our ability to manipulate genetic material, paves the way for the microbial cell factory development that enables production...... of protein in a sustainable, costefficient manner. In this thesis I report the joined efforts of my colleagues and myself, to improve the premises for cell factory development by optimizing the cloning strategies, improving the awareness of unforeseen side-effects in complex bacterial expression systems...

  7. MOLTEN CARBONATE FUEL CELL PRODUCT DESIGN IMPROVEMENT

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    H.C. Maru; M. Farooque

    2003-03-01

    The program efforts are focused on technology and system optimization for cost reduction, commercial design development, and prototype system field trials. The program is designed to advance the carbonate fuel cell technology from full-size field test to the commercial design. FuelCell Energy, Inc. (FCE) is in the later stage of the multiyear program for development and verification of carbonate fuel cell based power plants supported by DOE/NETL with additional funding from DOD/DARPA and the FuelCell Energy team. FCE has scaled up the technology to full-size and developed DFC{reg_sign} stack and balance-of-plant (BOP) equipment technology to meet product requirements, and acquired high rate manufacturing capabilities to reduce cost. FCE has designed submegawatt (DFC300A) and megawatt (DFC1500 and DFC3000) class fuel cell products for commercialization of its DFC{reg_sign} technology. A significant progress was made during the reporting period. The reforming unit design was optimized using a three-dimensional stack simulation model. Thermal and flow uniformities of the oxidant-In flow in the stack module were improved using computational fluid dynamics based flow simulation model. The manufacturing capacity was increased. The submegawatt stack module overall cost was reduced by {approx}30% on a per kW basis. An integrated deoxidizer-prereformer design was tested successfully at submegawatt scale using fuels simulating digester gas, coal bed methane gas and peak shave (natural) gas.

  8. Born to move : Development of form and function of the locomotor system in the early juvenile phase of precocial animals

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gorissen, B.M.C.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/372825788

    2017-01-01

    Precocial animals are extraordinary creatures, as they are able to walk within an hour after birth. However, hardly any information regarding the early development of gait in the horse was available. Also the ways the precocial skeleton copes with the sudden changes in loading after birth were

  9. Molten carbonate fuel cell product design improvement

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    P. Voyentzie; T. Leo; A. Kush; L. Christner; G. Carlson; C. Yuh

    1998-12-20

    Drawing on the manufacture, field test, and post-test experience of the sixteen Santa Clara Demonstration Project (SCDP) stacks, ERC is finalizing the next generation commercial entry product design. The second generation cells are 50% larger in area, 40% lighter on equal geometric area basis, and 30% thinner than the earlier design. These improvements have resulted in doubling of the full-height stack power. A low-cost and high-strength matrix has also been developed for improving product ruggedness. The low-cost advanced cell design incorporating these improvements has been refined through six short stack tests. Power production per cell of two times the SCDP maximum power operation, over ten thermal cycles, and overall operating flexibility with respect to load and thermal changes have been demonstrated in these short stack tests. An internally insulated stack enclosure has been designed and fabricated to eliminate the need for an inert gas environment during operation. ERC has acquired the capability for testing 400kW full-height direct fuel ceil (DFC) stack and balance-of-plant equipment. With the readiness of the power plant test facility, the cell package design, and the stack module, full-height stack testing has begun. The first full- height stack incorporating the post-SCDP second generation design was completed. The stack reached a power level of 253 kW, setting a world record for the highest power production from the advanced fuel cell system. Excellent performance uniformity at this power level affirmed manufacturing reproducibility of the components at the factory. This unoptimized small size test has achieved pipeline natural gas to DC electricity conversion efficiency of 47% (based on lower heating value - LHV) including the parasitic power consumed by the BOP equipment; that should translate to more than 50% efficiency in commercial operation, before employing cogeneration. The power plant system also operated smoothly. With the success of this

  10. The CXC chemokine cCAF stimulates precocious deposition of ECM molecules by wound fibroblasts, accelerating development of granulation tissue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Qi-Jing

    2002-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background During wound repair, fibroblasts orchestrate replacement of the provisional matrix formed during clotting with tenascin, cellular fibronectin and collagen III. These, in turn, are critical for migration of endothelial cells, keratinocytes and additional fibroblasts into the wound site. Fibroblasts are also important in the deposition of collagen I during scar formation. The CXC chemokine chicken Chemotactic and Angiogenic Factor (cCAF, is highly expressed by fibroblasts after wounding and during development of the granulation tissue, especially in areas where extracellular matrix (ECM is abundant. We hypothesized that cCAF stimulates fibroblasts to produce these matrix molecules. Results Here we show that this chemokine can stimulate precocious deposition of tenascin, fibronectin and collagen I, but not collagen III. Studies in culture and in vivo show that tenascin stimulation can also be achieved by the N-terminal 15 aas of the protein and occurs at the level of gene expression. In contrast, stimulation of fibronectin and collagen I both require the entire molecule and do not involve changes in gene expression. Fibronectin accumulation appears to be linked to tenascin production, and collagen I to decreased MMP-1 levels. In addition, cCAF is chemotactic for fibroblasts and accelerates their migration. Conclusions These previously unknown functions for chemokines suggest that cCAF, the chicken orthologue of human IL-8, enhances healing by rapidly chemoattracting fibroblasts into the wound site and stimulating them to produce ECM molecules, leading to precocious development of granulation tissue. This acceleration of the repair process may have important application to healing of impaired wounds.

  11. MOLTEN CARBONATE FUEL CELL PRODUCT DESIGN IMPROVEMENT

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    H.C. Maru; M. Farooque

    2005-03-01

    The program was designed to advance the carbonate fuel cell technology from full-size proof-of-concept field test to the commercial design. DOE has been funding Direct FuelCell{reg_sign} (DFC{reg_sign}) development at FuelCell Energy, Inc. (FCE, formerly Energy Research Corporation) from an early state of development for stationary power plant applications. The current program efforts were focused on technology and system development, and cost reduction, leading to commercial design development and prototype system field trials. FCE, in Danbury, CT, is a world-recognized leader for the development and commercialization of high efficiency fuel cells that can generate clean electricity at power stations, or at distributed locations near the customers such as hospitals, schools, universities, hotels and other commercial and industrial applications. FCE has designed three different fuel cell power plant models (DFC300A, DFC1500 and DFC3000). FCE's power plants are based on its patented DFC{reg_sign} technology, where a hydrocarbon fuel is directly fed to the fuel cell and hydrogen is generated internally. These power plants offer significant advantages compared to the existing power generation technologies--higher fuel efficiency, significantly lower emissions, quieter operation, flexible siting and permitting requirements, scalability and potentially lower operating costs. Also, the exhaust heat by-product can be used for cogeneration applications such as high-pressure steam, district heating and air conditioning. Several sub-MW power plants based on the DFC design are currently operating in Europe, Japan and the US. Several one-megawatt power plant design was verified by operation on natural gas at FCE. This plant is currently installed at a customer site in King County, WA under another US government program and is currently in operation. Because hydrogen is generated directly within the fuel cell module from readily available fuels such as natural gas and

  12. Male Central Precocious Puberty: Serum Profile of Anti-Müllerian Hormone and Inhibin B before, during, and after Treatment with GnRH Analogue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Romina P. Grinspon

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We aimed to describe the functional changes of Sertoli cells, based on the measurement of serum anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH and inhibin B during treatment with GnRHa and after its withdrawal in boys with central precocious puberty. Six boys aged 0.8 to 5.5 yr were included. AMH was low at diagnosis in patients >1 yr but within the normal range in younger patients. AMH increased to normal prepubertal levels during treatment. After GnRHa withdrawal, AMH declined concomitantly with the rise in serum testosterone. At diagnosis, inhibin B was elevated and decreased throughout therapy, remaining in the upper normal prepubertal range. In patients with testicular volume above 4 mL AMH remained higher in spite of suppressed FSH. After treatment withdrawal, inhibin B rose towards normal pubertal levels. In conclusion, AMH did not decrease in patients <1 yr reflecting the lack of androgen receptor expression in Sertoli cells in early infancy. Serum inhibin B might result from the contribution of two sources: the mass of Sertoli cells and the stimulation exerted by FSH. Sertoli cell markers might provide additional tools for the diagnosis and treatment followup of boys with central precocious puberty.

  13. What Are the Symptoms of Puberty, Precocious Puberty, and Delayed Puberty?

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... puberty include: Growth of pubic and other body hair Growth spurt Breast development Onset of menstruation (after puberty ... of pubic hair, other body hair, and facial hair Enlargement of testicles and penis Muscle growth Growth spurt Acne Deepening of the voice Precocious ...

  14. Hormonal changes during GnRH analogue therapy in children with central precocious puberty

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Müller, J; Juul, A; Andersson, A M

    2000-01-01

    Gonadotropin releasing hormone analogues (GnRHa) have been used for treatment of central precocious puberty (CPP) for more than 15 years. They are generally considered safe although data on potential long-term side effects are scarce. However, GnRHa therapy has profound effects on both the hypoth...

  15. Surgical excision of hypothalamic hamartoma in a twenty months old boy with precocious puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajesh K Ghanta

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available A twenty months old boy presented to our department with true precocious puberty due to hypothalamic hamartoma. Total surgical excision of pedunculated hypothalamic hamartoma was done successfully by the pterional trans-sylvian approach as he could not afford medical management. Patient had uneventful post-operative course with normalization of serum testosterone levels and regression of secondary sexual characters.

  16. Foraging behavior and physiological changes in precocial quail chicks in response to low temperatures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krijgsveld, KL; Visser, GH; Daan, S

    We examined whether low ambient temperatures influence foraging behavior of precocial Japanese quail chicks and alter the balance between investment in growth and thermogenic function. To test this, one group of chicks was exposed to 7 degreesC and one group to 24 degreesC during foraging throughout

  17. Acquired versus innate prey capturing skills in super-precocial live-bearing fish

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lankheet, Martin J.; Stoffers, Twan; Leeuwen, van Johan L.; Pollux, Bart J.A.

    2016-01-01

    Live-bearing fish start hunting for mobile prey within hours after birth, an example of extreme precociality. Because prenatal, in utero, development of this behaviour is constrained by the lack of free-swimming sensory-motor interactions, immediate success after birth depends on innate,

  18. Data from: Acquired versus innate prey capturing skills in super-precocial live-bearing fish

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lankheet, M.J.M.; Stoffers, Twan; Leeuwen, van J.L.; Pollux, B.J.A.

    2016-01-01

    Live-bearing fish start hunting for mobile prey within hours after birth, an example of extreme precociality. Because prenatal, in utero, development of this behaviour is constrained by the lack of free-swimming sensory-motor interactions, immediate success after birth depends on innate,

  19. Daily energy expenditure in precocial shorebird chicks : Smaller species perform at higher levels

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krijgsveld, Karen L.; Ricklefs, Robert E.; Visser, G. Henk

    2012-01-01

    We measured daily energy expenditure (DEE) during the development periods of precocial chicks of five species of Arctic shorebirds spanning a broad range in size, in order to investigate the relationships between DEE, body size, and growth rate. We also quantified the effect of weather conditions on

  20. The energetic implications of precocial development for three shorebird species breeding in a warm environment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tjorve, K. M. C.; Underhill, L. G.; Visser, G. H.

    We investigated the effect of body size, parental behaviour and timing of breeding on the chick growth and energetics of three precocial shorebird (Charadrii) species in a warm sub-tropical environment: the Kittlitz's Plover Charadrius pecuarius, Blacksmith Lapwing Vanellus armatus, and Crowned

  1. Loss of Igfbp7 Causes Precocious Involution in Lactating Mouse Mammary Gland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chatterjee, Sumanta; Bacopulos, Stephanie; Yang, Wenyi; Amemiya, Yutaka; Spyropoulos, Demetri

    2014-01-01

    Background Insulin like growth factors (IGFs) and their binding proteins (IGFBPs) are secreted peptides that play major roles in regulating the normal development and maturation of mammary gland. While Igfbp7 has been shown to decrease breast tumor growth, its role in regulating the normal mammary gland development has not been studied. To this end, we generated Igfbp7-null mice and examined the development and maturation of mammary glands in the virgin, pregnant and lactating animals. Results We report here that loss of Igfbp7 significantly retards mammary gland development in the virgin animals. More significantly, the pregnant Igfpb7-null glands contained fewer alveolar structures and that during lactation these glands exhibit the morphological changes that are associated with involution. The transcriptome profile of the Igfbp7-null glands on the lactation day 3 revealed a distinct involution-related gene signature compared to the lactating WT glands. Interestingly, we found that the lactating Igfbp7-null glands exhibit increased expression of Stat3 and enhanced activation of (phosphorylated) Stat3, combined with decreased expression of Stat5 suggesting that the absence of Igfbp7 accelerates the onset of involution. We also found that in absence of Igfpb7, the lactating glands contain increased Igfbp5 protein along with decreased expression of IGF-1 Receptor and Akt activation. Finally, we show that during the normal course of involution, Igfbp7 expression is significantly decreased in the mammary gland. Conclusion Our data suggest that loss of Igfbp7 induces precocious involution possibly through diminished cell survival signals. Our findings identify Igfbp7 as major regulator of involution in the mammary gland. PMID:24505323

  2. Testes and brain gene expression in precocious male and adult maturing Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Houeix Benoit

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The male Atlantic salmon generally matures in fresh water upon returning after one or several years at sea. Some fast-growing male parr develop an alternative life strategy where they sexually mature before migrating to the oceans. These so called 'precocious' parr or 'sneakers' can successfully fertilise adult female eggs and so perpetuate their line. We have used a custom-built cDNA microarray to investigate gene expression changes occurring in the salmon gonad and brain associated with precocious maturation. The microarray has been populated with genes selected specifically for involvement in sexual maturation (precocious and adult and in the parr-smolt transformation. Results Immature and mature parr collected from a hatchery-reared stock in January were significantly different in weight, length and condition factor. Changes in brain expression were small - never more than 2-fold on the microarray, and down-regulation of genes was much more pronounced than up-regulation. Significantly changing genes included isotocin, vasotocin, cathepsin D, anamorsin and apolipoprotein E. Much greater changes in expression were seen in the testes. Among those genes in the testis with the most significant changes in expression were anti-Mullerian hormone, collagen 1A, and zinc finger protein (Zic1, which were down-regulated in precocity and apolipoproteins E and C-1, lipoprotein lipase and anti-leukoproteinase precursor which were up-regulated in precocity. Expression changes of several genes were confirmed in individual fish by quantitative PCR and several genes (anti-Mullerian hormone, collagen 1A, beta-globin and guanine nucleotide binding protein (G protein beta polypeptide 2-like 1 (GNB2L1 were also examined in adult maturing testes. Down-regulation of anti-Mullerian hormone was judged to be greater than 160-fold for precocious males and greater than 230-fold for November adult testes in comparison to July testes by this method. For

  3. α-fetoprotein involvement during glucocorticoid-induced precocious maturation in rat colon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Min; Sun, Peng; Liu, Xiao-Yan; Dong, Dan; Du, Jun; Gu, Luo; Ge, Ying-Bin

    2011-06-28

    To investigate the role of α-fetoprotein (AFP), a cancer-associated fetal glycoprotein, in glucocorticoid-induced precocious maturation in rat colon. Colons from suckling Sprague-Dawley rats were used in this study. Corticosterone acetate at a dose of 100 μg/g body weight was given to normal pups on days 7, 9 and 11 after birth to induce hypercorticoidism. Control animals were injected with identical volumes of normal saline. Some rats receiving corticosterone 7 d after birth were also treated with mifepristone (RU38486), a glucocorticoid cytoplasm receptor antagonist to investigate the effects of glucocorticoids (GCs). The morphological changes of the crypt depth and villous height of the villous zone in colon were observed as indices of colon maturation. Expression levels of AFP in colons were detected by reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction and Western blotting. To identify the cellular localization of AFP in developing rat colons, double-immunofluorescent staining was performed using antibodies to specific mesenchymal cell marker and AFP. Corticosterone increased the crypt depth and villous height in the colon of 8- and 10-d-old rats with hypercorticoidism compared with that in the control animals (120% in 8-d-old rats and 118% in 10-d-old rats in villous height, P = 0.021; 145% in 8-d-old rats and 124% in 10-d-old rats in crypt depth, P = 0.017). These increases were accompanied by an increase of AFP expression in both mRNA and protein (2.5-folds in 8-d-old and 2.5-folds in 10-d-old rats higher than in control animals, P = 0.035; 1.8-folds in 8-d-old and 1.3-folds in 10-d-old rats higher than in control animals, P = 0.023). Increased crypt depth and villous height and increased expression of AFP in the colon of rats with hypercorticoidism were blocked by mifepristone. Both had positive staining for AFP or vimentin, and overlapped in mesenchymal cells at each tested colon. GCs promote the development of rat colon. AFP appears to be involved, in

  4. Performance improvement of silicon solar cells by nanoporous silicon coating

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dzhafarov T. D.

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available In the present paper the method is shown to improve the photovoltaic parameters of screen-printed silicon solar cells by nanoporous silicon film formation on the frontal surface of the cell using the electrochemical etching. The possible mechanisms responsible for observed improvement of silicon solar cell performance are discussed.

  5. Intervention levels in a precocious detection program for breast cancer and evaluation of four participant units

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carrera M, F.; Velazquez M, S.; Manzano M, F.J.; Sanchez S, J.

    1998-01-01

    It is presented the basis to make a cost benefit analysis for a breast cancer precocious detection program and consequently the keys for its optimization from the radiological point of view. Taking this as a reference it is made an exhaustive quality control to four mammographic unities which were participating or they were candidates to participate in a breast cancer precocious detection program. Also it is presented its results. It is followed the protocol for quality control in mammography in Spain obtaining values for the measurement of twelve interesting parameters. It should be maintained the standard breast dose about 1 mGy/ image. It should be available a 24 x 30 cm portacassete and considering the utilization of a single projection by breast. (Author)

  6. Improved protection for silicon solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broder, J. D.

    1970-01-01

    Fluorinated ethylene propylene /FEP/ film is substituted for epoxy cement in bonding glass covers to silicon solar cells. Insensitivity of FEP to ultraviolet radiation reduces requirement for filtering and does not impair cell performance. Cell costs are reduced and cover mounting is simplified.

  7. Congenital rhabdomyosarcoma, central precocious puberty, hemihypertrophy and hypophosphatemic rickets associated with epidermal nevus syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahgholi, Elham; Mollaian, Mansour; Haghshenas, Zahra; Honarmand, Malektaj

    2011-01-01

    We describe a newborn girl with right-sided extended epidermal nevus, congenital rhabdomyosarcoma of the inguinal area at birth who had developed central precocious puberty, hemihypertrophy and vitamin D3-responsive hypophosphatemic rickets at the age of 14 months. Our patient demonstrates a much broader and polymorphic spectrum of organ systems involvement in epidermal nevus syndrome at a very early age of her life.

  8. Precocious metamorphosis in the juvenile hormone-deficient mutant of the silkworm, Bombyx mori.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takaaki Daimon

    Full Text Available Insect molting and metamorphosis are intricately governed by two hormones, ecdysteroids and juvenile hormones (JHs. JHs prevent precocious metamorphosis and allow the larva to undergo multiple rounds of molting until it attains the proper size for metamorphosis. In the silkworm, Bombyx mori, several "moltinism" mutations have been identified that exhibit variations in the number of larval molts; however, none of them have been characterized molecularly. Here we report the identification and characterization of the gene responsible for the dimolting (mod mutant that undergoes precocious metamorphosis with fewer larval-larval molts. We show that the mod mutation results in complete loss of JHs in the larval hemolymph and that the mutant phenotype can be rescued by topical application of a JH analog. We performed positional cloning of mod and found a null mutation in the cytochrome P450 gene CYP15C1 in the mod allele. We also demonstrated that CYP15C1 is specifically expressed in the corpus allatum, an endocrine organ that synthesizes and secretes JHs. Furthermore, a biochemical experiment showed that CYP15C1 epoxidizes farnesoic acid to JH acid in a highly stereospecific manner. Precocious metamorphosis of mod larvae was rescued when the wild-type allele of CYP15C1 was expressed in transgenic mod larvae using the GAL4/UAS system. Our data therefore reveal that CYP15C1 is the gene responsible for the mod mutation and is essential for JH biosynthesis. Remarkably, precocious larval-pupal transition in mod larvae does not occur in the first or second instar, suggesting that authentic epoxidized JHs are not essential in very young larvae of B. mori. Our identification of a JH-deficient mutant in this model insect will lead to a greater understanding of the molecular basis of the hormonal control of development and metamorphosis.

  9. Qualitative assessment of precocious puberty-related user-created contents on YouTube

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hyo-Kyoung Nam

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available PurposeUser-created content (UCC has provided a considerable amount of medical information and become an important source. We aimed to evaluate the quality and scientific accuracy of precocious puberty-related UCC on YouTube.MethodsThe keywords "precocious puberty", "early puberty", "sexual precocity", and "precocity" were searched for on YouTube during June and July 2014. More than 1,500 UCC matched the keywords. According to the information provider, UCC was classified as medical, oriental, or commercial & others. We evaluated the quality and scientific accuracy of the information provided in UCC using the DISCERN instrument and information scores, respectively.ResultsWe selected 51 UCC, which were categorized into three types: medical (n=17, oriental (n=17, or commercial & others (n=17. The overall quality score for medical UCC (3.4 was significantly higher relative to those of oriental and commercial & others UCC (2.8 and 2.3, respectively (P<0.001. In the assessment of scientific accuracy, the mean information score for medical UCC (30.7 was significantly higher than those of oriental and commercial & others UCC (15.9 and 5.1, respectively (P<0.001. The mean duration of oriental UCC was the longest (P<0.001, however, it was viewed less frequently among them (P=0.086.ConclusionThe quality and accuracy of precocious puberty-related health information in UCC were variable and often unreliable. The overall quality of UCC regarding precocious puberty was moderate. Only medical UCC provided scientifically accurate information. As UCC becomes a popular source of health information, it is important to provide reliable, scientifically accurate information.

  10. Diagnosis and constitutional and laboratory features of Korean girls referred for precocious puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Doosoo Kim

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available &lt;B&gt;Purpose:&lt;/B&gt; Precocious puberty is defined as breast development before the age of 8 years in girls. The present study aimed to reveal the diagnosis of Korean girls referred for precocious puberty and to compare the constitutional and endocrinological features among diagnosis groups. &lt;B&gt;Methods:&lt;/B&gt; The present study used a retrospective chart review of 988 Korean girls who had visited a pediatric endocrinology clinic from 2006 to 2010 for the evaluation of precocious puberty. Study groups comprised fast puberty, true precocious puberty (PP, pseudo PP, premature thelarche, and control. We determined the height standard deviation score (HSDS, weight standard deviation score (WSDS, and body mass index standard deviation score (BMISDS of each group using the published 2007 Korean growth charts. Hormone tests were performed at our outpatient clinic. &lt;B&gt;Results:&lt;/B&gt; The PP groups comprised fast puberty (67%, premature thelarche (17%, true PP (15%, and pseudo PP (1%. Advanced bone age and levels of estradiol, basal luteinizing hormone (LH, and peak LH after gonadotropin-releasing hormone stimulation testing were significantly high in the fast puberty and true PP groups compared with the control group. HSDS, WSDS, and BMISDS were significantly higher in the true PP group than in the control group (P&lt;0.05. &lt;B&gt;Conclusion:&lt;/B&gt; The frequent causes of PP were found to be fast puberty, true PP, and premature thelarche. Furthermore, BMISDS were significantly elevated in the true PP group. Therefore, we emphasize the need for regular follow-up of girls who are heavier or taller than others in the same age group.

  11. A Case of a Girl with Arnold-Chiari Type 1 Malformation with Precocious Puberty

    OpenAIRE

    Kim, Min Sun; Hwang, Pyoung Han; Lee, Dae-Yeol

    2018-01-01

    A small percentage of individuals have the neurological anomaly of central precocious puberty (CPP). Common neurologic causes of CPP include a tumor or congenital lesions. Although Arnold-Chiari malformation can be caused by congenital or acquired causes, it is unusual in patients with CPP. We present the case of a girl aged 4.5 years who complained of breast budding. Her neurological examination and growth pattern were normal. She had no endocrinological abnormality, except for true precocio...

  12. Salt tolerance of precocious-dwarf cashew rootstocks: physiological and growth indexes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carneiro Paulo Torres

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available The cashew crop (Anacardium occiedentale L. is of great economic and social importance for Northeast Brazil, a region usually affected by water and soil salinity. The present study was conducted in a greenhouse to evaluate the effects of four salinity levels established through electrical conductivity of irrigation water (ECw: 0.7, 1.4, 2.1 and 2.8 dS m-1, at 25ºC, on growth and physiological indexes of five rootstocks of dwarf-precocious cashew varieties CCP06, CCP09, CCP1001, EMBRAPA50, and EMBRAPA51. Plant height, leaf area, dry weight of root, shoot and total; water content of leaves, root/shoot ratio, leaf area ratio, absolute and relative growth rates and rate of net assimilation were evaluated. The majority of the evaluated variables were found to be affected by ECw and the effects varied among clones; however, no significant interactive effects were observed for factors. The value of ECw = 1.39 dS m-1 was considered as a threshold tolerance for the precocious cashew rootstocks used in this study. The dwarf-precocious cashew is moderately sensible to soil salinity during the formation phase of rootstock. Clones EMBRAPA51 and EMBRAPA50 presented, respectively, the least and the best development indexes.

  13. Sex hormone binding globulin, free estradiol index, and lipid profiles in girls with precocious puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hyun-Wook Chae

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available PurposeSex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG modulates the availability of biologically active free sex hormones. The regulatory role of SHBG might be important in the relationship between hormone levels and the modification of lipid profiles in girls with precocious puberty. However, few studies have evaluated the relationship of SHBG, free estradiol index (FEI, and lipid levels in these girls.MethodsOne hundred and nine girls less than 8 years of age with pubertal development were enrolled. FEI was calculated with SHBG and estradiol (E2. We analyzed SHBG between peak luteinizing hormone (LH≥5 (IU/L (group 1 and LH<5 (IU/L (group 2 through a gonadotropin releasing hormone stimulation test.ResultsBody mass index (BMI standard deviation score (SDS was higher in group 2 than in group 1 (P=0.004. Serum SHBG levels did not differ and FEI was not higher in group 1 (P=0.122. Serum cholesterol, HDL, and LDL did not differ; however, triglyceride levels were higher in group 2 (P=0.023. SHBG was negatively correlated with bone age advancement, BMI, BMI SDS, and FEI, and was positively correlated with HDL. However, SHBG was not correlated with E2 or peak LH.ConclusionSerum SHBG itself might not be associated with precocious puberty in girls, but it might be related to BMI and lipid profiles. Further studies are needed to reveal the relationship between sex hormone and obesity in girls with precocious puberty.

  14. Bacterial cells with improved tolerance to isobutyric acid

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2017-01-01

    Bacterial cells genetically modified to improve their tolerance to certain commodity chemicals, such as isobutyric acid and related compounds, and methods of preparing and using such bacterial cells for production of isobutyric acid and related compounds....

  15. Accelerated CCl4-induced liver fibrosis in Hjv-/- mice, associated with an oxidative burst and precocious profibrogenic gene expression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giada Sebastiani

    Full Text Available Hereditary hemochromatosis is commonly associated with liver fibrosis. Likewise, hepatic iron overload secondary to chronic liver diseases aggravates liver injury. To uncover underlying molecular mechanisms, hemochromatotic hemojuvelin knockout (Hjv-/- mice and wild type (wt controls were intoxicated with CCl(4. Hjv-/- mice developed earlier (by 2-4 weeks and more acute liver damage, reflected in dramatic levels of serum transaminases and ferritin and the development of severe coagulative necrosis and fibrosis. These responses were associated with an oxidative burst and early upregulation of mRNAs encoding α1-(I-collagen, the profibrogenic cytokines TGF-β1, endothelin-1 and PDGF and, notably, the iron-regulatory hormone hepcidin. Hence, CCl4-induced liver fibrogenesis was exacerbated and progressed precociously in Hjv-/- animals. Even though livers of naïve Hjv-/- mice were devoid of apparent pathology, they exhibited oxidative stress and immunoreactivity towards α-SMA antibodies, a marker of hepatic stellate cells activation. Furthermore, they expressed significantly higher (2-3 fold vs. wt, p<0.05 levels of α1-(I-collagen, TGF-β1, endothelin-1 and PDGF mRNAs, indicative of early fibrogenesis. Our data suggest that hepatic iron overload in parenchymal cells promotes oxidative stress and triggers premature profibrogenic gene expression, contributing to accelerated onset and precipitous progression of liver fibrogenesis.

  16. Multispectral fingerprinting for improved in vivo cell dynamics analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cooper Cameron HJ

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Tracing cell dynamics in the embryo becomes tremendously difficult when cell trajectories cross in space and time and tissue density obscure individual cell borders. Here, we used the chick neural crest (NC as a model to test multicolor cell labeling and multispectral confocal imaging strategies to overcome these roadblocks. Results We found that multicolor nuclear cell labeling and multispectral imaging led to improved resolution of in vivo NC cell identification by providing a unique spectral identity for each cell. NC cell spectral identity allowed for more accurate cell tracking and was consistent during short term time-lapse imaging sessions. Computer model simulations predicted significantly better object counting for increasing cell densities in 3-color compared to 1-color nuclear cell labeling. To better resolve cell contacts, we show that a combination of 2-color membrane and 1-color nuclear cell labeling dramatically improved the semi-automated analysis of NC cell interactions, yet preserved the ability to track cell movements. We also found channel versus lambda scanning of multicolor labeled embryos significantly reduced the time and effort of image acquisition and analysis of large 3D volume data sets. Conclusions Our results reveal that multicolor cell labeling and multispectral imaging provide a cellular fingerprint that may uniquely determine a cell's position within the embryo. Together, these methods offer a spectral toolbox to resolve in vivo cell dynamics in unprecedented detail.

  17. Improved Direct Methanol Fuel Cell Stack

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Mahlon S.; Ramsey, John C.

    2005-03-08

    A stack of direct methanol fuel cells exhibiting a circular footprint. A cathode and anode manifold, tie-bolt penetrations and tie-bolts are located within the circular footprint. Each fuel cell uses two graphite-based plates. One plate includes a cathode active area that is defined by serpentine channels connecting the inlet and outlet cathode manifold. The other plate includes an anode active area defined by serpentine channels connecting the inlet and outlet of the anode manifold, where the serpentine channels of the anode are orthogonal to the serpentine channels of the cathode. Located between the two plates is the fuel cell active region.

  18. Improve T Cell Therapy in Neuroblastoma

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-07-01

    curative treatment is available currently. Hai and colleagues found that the Hedgehog signaling pathway in salivary glands was activated during... salivary gland hypofunction by preserving salivary stem/progenitor cells and the parasympathetic innervation in mice. Similar effects on expression of genes...cytotoxic T lymphocytes without enhancement of regulatory T-cell inhibition. Clin Cancer Res. Clin Cancer Res. 2014 Jan 1;20(1):131-9. Highlited article

  19. Improved method for predicting linear B-cell epitopes

    OpenAIRE

    Larsen, Jens Erik Pontoppidan; Lund, Ole; Nielsen, Morten

    2006-01-01

    Background B-cell epitopes are the sites of molecules that are recognized by antibodies of the immune system. Knowledge of B-cell epitopes may be used in the design of vaccines and diagnostics tests. It is therefore of interest to develop improved methods for predicting B-cell epitopes. In this paper, we describe an improved method for predicting linear B-cell epitopes. Results In order to do this, three data sets of linear B-cell epitope annotated proteins were constructed. A data set was co...

  20. The Diagnostic Value of Pelvic Ultrasound in Girls with Central Precocious Puberty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Sang Heon; Joo, Eun Young; Lee, Ji-Eun; Jun, Yong-Hoon; Kim, Mi-Young

    2016-01-01

    The gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) stimulation test is the gold standard for differentiating central precocious puberty (CPP) from exaggerated thelarche (ET). Because of this test's limitations, previous studies have clarified the clinical and laboratory factors that predict CPP. The present study investigated the early diagnostic significance of pelvic ultrasound in girls with CPP. The GnRH stimulation test and pelvic ultrasound were performed between March 2007 and February 2015 in 192 girls (aged values in pelvic ultrasound for differentiating between CPP and ET. Pelvic ultrasound should be combined with clinical and laboratory tests to maximize its diagnostic value for CPP.

  1. Precocious Degenerative Arthropathy And Bluish Patches On Ears : Ochronosis And Alkaptonuria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahajan Vikram K

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Alkaptonuria is a rare, autosomal recessive disorder of phenylalanin/tyrosine metabolism due to congenital deficiency of the enzyme homogentisic acid oxidase. The diagnosis is clinical and the triad of homogentisic aciduria, ochronosis and precocious degenerative arthritis is characteristic. Its diagnosis in infancy and early therapeutic intervention help delaying its complications. These patients may remain undiagnosed until the darkening of urine soaked diapers is noticed or the early degenerative arthropathy develops. This paper describes two cases of alkaptonuria presenting late in life; one of them had associated hyperthyroidism.

  2. TAK1 modulates satellite stem cell homeostasis and skeletal muscle repair

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogura, Yuji; Hindi, Sajedah M.; Sato, Shuichi; Xiong, Guangyan; Akira, Shizuo; Kumar, Ashok

    2015-01-01

    Satellite cells are resident adult stem cells that are required for regeneration of skeletal muscle. However, signalling mechanisms that regulate satellite cell function are less understood. Here we demonstrate that transforming growth factor-β-activated kinase 1 (TAK1) is important in satellite stem cell homeostasis and function. Inactivation of TAK1 in satellite cells inhibits muscle regeneration in adult mice. TAK1 is essential for satellite cell proliferation and its inactivation causes precocious differentiation. Moreover, TAK1-deficient satellite cells exhibit increased oxidative stress and undergo spontaneous cell death, primarily through necroptosis. TAK1 is required for the activation of NF-κB and JNK in satellite cells. Forced activation of NF-κB improves survival and proliferation of TAK1-deficient satellite cells. Furthermore, TAK1-mediated activation of JNK is essential to prevent oxidative stress and precocious differentiation of satellite cells. Collectively, our study suggests that TAK1 is required for maintaining the pool of satellite stem cells and for regenerative myogenesis. PMID:26648529

  3. Strategies to improve homing of mesenchymal stem cells for greater efficacy in stem cell therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naderi-Meshkin, Hojjat; Bahrami, Ahmad Reza; Bidkhori, Hamid Reza; Mirahmadi, Mahdi; Ahmadiankia, Naghmeh

    2015-01-01

    Stem/progenitor cell-based therapeutic approach in clinical practice has been an elusive dream in medical sciences, and improvement of stem cell homing is one of major challenges in cell therapy programs. Stem/progenitor cells have a homing response to injured tissues/organs, mediated by interactions of chemokine receptors expressed on the cells and chemokines secreted by the injured tissue. For improvement of directed homing of the cells, many techniques have been developed either to engineer stem/progenitor cells with higher amount of chemokine receptors (stem cell-based strategies) or to modulate the target tissues to release higher level of the corresponding chemokines (target tissue-based strategies). This review discusses both of these strategies involved in the improvement of stem cell homing focusing on mesenchymal stem cells as most frequent studied model in cellular therapies. © 2014 International Federation for Cell Biology.

  4. Improve T Cell Therapy in Neuroblastoma

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-01

    Walkersville, MD, USA), penicillin- streptomycin (BioWhittaker), and b-mercaptoethanol (50 mM) (Invitrogen, Carlsbad, CA, USA) and then activated with anti-CD3...acting hydrolase elements that mediate a ribosomal skip between 2A-linked genes,15 resulting in stoichiometric protein production16 that can improve...culture system shows that the viral- derived 2A-TAV and 2A-ERAV ribosomal skip sequences, and adjacent fusion protein regions exhibit very low (n¼ 5) to

  5. MOLTEN CARBONATE FUEL CELL PRODUCT DESIGN IMPROVEMENT

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Unknown

    2000-01-01

    The FCE PDI program is designed to advance the carbonate fuel cell technology from the current full-size field test to the commercial design. The specific objectives selected to attain the overall program goal are: Define power plant requirements and specifications; Establish the design for a multifuel, low-cost, modular, market-responsive power plant; Resolve power plant manufacturing issues and define the design for the commercial-scale manufacturing facility; Define the stack and balance-of-plant (BOP) equipment packaging arrangement, and module designs; Acquire capability to support developmental testing of stacks and critical BOP equipment to prepare for commercial design; and Resolve stack and BOP equipment technology issues, and design, build and field test a modular prototype power plant to demonstrate readiness for commercial entry.

  6. Melatonin improves spermatogonial stem cells transplantation efficiency in azoospermic mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammadreza Gholami

    2014-02-01

    Conclusion: Administration of melatonin (20 mg/kg simultaneously with transplantation of spermatogonial stem cells in azoospermia mouse testis increases the efficiency of transplantation and improves structural properties of the testes tissue.

  7. Cell phone–based health education messaging improves health ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    SMS), provides new and innovative opportunities for disease prevention and health education. Objective: To explore the use of cell phone–based health education SMS to improve the health literacy of community residents in China. Methods: ...

  8. Complete androgen insensitivity syndrome associated with male gender identity or female precocious puberty in the same family.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermúdez de la Vega, José A; Fernández-Cancio, Mónica; Bernal, Susana; Audí, Laura

    2015-01-01

    In 4 complete androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS) members of one family, 2 presented extreme and unusual clinical features: male gender identity disorder (case 1) and female precocious central puberty (case 2). The AR gene carried the mutation c.1752C>G, p.Phe584Leu. Gender dysphoria in CAIS may be considered as a true transgender and has been described in 3 other cases. Central precocious puberty has only been described in 1 case; Müllerian ducts in case 2 permitted menarche. Despite the common CAIS phenotype, there was a familial disparity for gender identity adequacy and timing and type of puberty.

  9. Central precocious puberty in a 3 year-old girl with Phenylketonuria: a rare association?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Background Central precocious puberty (CPP) and phenylketonuria (PKU) are two rare conditions, the latter being the rarer. To date, only one case featuring both these conditions has been reported, and hyperphenylalaninemia was assumed triggering CPP. Case presentation We present a 3.2 years old girl referred with a 12 months history of breast and pubic hair development, and vaginal discharge. Hyperphenylalaninemia had been identified by newborn screening and PKU subsequently confirmed by plasma amino acid and genetic analysis. Early dietary control of plasma phenylalanine had been excellent afterwards, resulting in phenylalanine concentrations consistently within the recommended range. Clinical scenario, hormonal assessment and imaging were in keeping with true idiopathic central precocious puberty. Treatment with long lasting gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogue led to regression of secondary sexual characteristics. Conclusion We describe for the first time CPP in a girl affected with PKU but with persistently well controlled blood phenylalanine concentrations. This finding is in contrast to a previous report which suggested persistently high phenylalaninemia levels as potential trigger for CPP in PKU patients. Our report, together with the lack of evidence in published cohort studies of children with PKU, strongly suggests this rare association is coincidental and independent of the presence of severe hyperphenylalaninemia. PMID:24773629

  10. Laterization of epileptiform discharges in patients with epilepsy and precocious destructive brain insults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teixeira Ricardo A.

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Unilateral destructive brain lesions of early development can result in compensatory thickening of the ipsilateral cranial vault. The aim of this study was to determine the frequency of these bone changes among patients with epilepsy and precocious destructive lesions, and whether a relationship exists between these changes and epileptiform discharges lateralization. Fifty-one patients had their ictal / interictal scalp EEG and skull thickness symmetry on MRI analyzed. Patients were divided into three main groups according to the topographic distribution of the lesion on the MRI: hemispheric (H (n=9; main arterial territory (AT (n=25; arterial borderzone (Bdz (n=17. The EEG background activity was abnormal in 26 patients and were more frequent among patients of group H (p= 0.044. Thickening of the skull was more frequent among patients of group H (p= 0.004. Five patients (9.8% showed discordant lateralization between epileptiform discharges and structural lesion (four of them with an abnormal background, and only two of them with skull changes. In one of these patients, ictal SPECT provided strong evidence for scalp EEG false lateralization. The findings suggest that compensatory skull thickening in patients with precocious destructive brain insults are more frequent among patients with unilateral and large lesions. However, EEG lateralization discordance among these patients seems to be more related to EEG background abnormalities and extent of cerebral damage than to skull changes.

  11. Surgical and anesthetic considerations in histrelin capsule implantation for the treatment of precocious puberty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, James S; Alkhoury, Fuad; Burnweit, Cathy

    2014-05-01

    Precocious puberty treatment traditionally meant anxiety-provoking monthly depot injections until the advent of the annually implanted histrelin capsule. This study is the first to evaluate the surgical and anesthetic aspects of histrelin implantation for precocious puberty. All cases from one surgeon at a tertiary pediatric hospital were reviewed for patient age, anesthetic type, technical difficulties, and complications. From 12/2007 to 3/2013, 114 cases (49% implantations, 25% removals/re-implantations, 25% removals) were performed. Local anesthesia was employed in 100% of non-general anesthesia cases (n=109, 96%), augmented by inhaled N2O in 49%. Five patients (4%) underwent general anesthesia: three neurologically-impaired and two coordinated with scheduled MRIs. Procedural difficulties (n=18, 16%) included implant fracture during removal (n=16/58 removals, 28%). Fracture never occurred during implantation. Three children (3%) suffered complications. One infection was treated with antibiotics, and two implants were removed for systemic allergic reaction. Six children (5%) had unscheduled post-operative checks for pain (n=3, 3%), allergy to elastic dressing (n=2, 2%), or rash (n=1, 1%). Mean charges for general anesthesia were $10,188±1292 versus $528±147 for N2O or local alone (pLocal anesthesia, with possible N2O supplementation, is well-tolerated and introduces substantial resource and cost savings. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. A boy with Prader-Willi syndrome: unmasking precocious puberty during growth hormone replacement therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ludwig, Natasha G; Radaeli, Rafael F; Silva, Mariana M X; Romero, Camila M; Carrilho, Alexandre J F; Bessa, Danielle; Macedo, Delanie B; Oliveira, Maria L; Latronico, Ana Claudia; Mazzuco, Tânia L

    2016-01-01

    Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) is a genetic disorder frequently characterized by obesity, growth hormone deficiency, genital abnormalities, and hypogonadotropic hypogonadism. Incomplete or delayed pubertal development as well as premature adrenarche are usually found in PWS, whereas central precocious puberty (CPP) is very rare. This study aimed to report the clinical and biochemical follow-up of a PWS boy with CPP and to discuss the management of pubertal growth. By the age of 6, he had obesity, short stature, and many clinical criteria of PWS diagnosis, which was confirmed by DNA methylation test. Therapy with recombinant human growth hormone (rhGH) replacement (0.15 IU/kg/day) was started. Later, he presented psychomotor agitation, aggressive behavior, and increased testicular volume. Laboratory analyses were consistent with the diagnosis of CPP (gonadorelin-stimulated LH peak 15.8 IU/L, testosterone 54.7 ng/dL). The patient was then treated with gonadotropin-releasing hormone analog (GnRHa). Hypothalamic dysfunctions have been implicated in hormonal disturbances related to pubertal development, but no morphologic abnormalities were detected in the present case. Additional methylation analysis (MS-MLPA) of the chromosome 15q11 locus confirmed PWS diagnosis. We presented the fifth case of CPP in a genetically-confirmed PWS male. Combined therapy with GnRHa and rhGH may be beneficial in this rare condition of precocious pubertal development in PWS.

  13. Improved Erythrocyte Osmotic Fragility and Packed Cell Volume ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Improved Erythrocyte Osmotic Fragility and Packed Cell Volume following administration of Aloe barbadensis Juice Extract in Rats. ... Abstract. Aloe barbadensis is a popular house plant that has a long history of a multipurpose folk remedy. ... Keywords: osmotic fragility, packed cell volume, haemoglobin, Aloe vera ...

  14. Nanoscale dimples for improved absorption in organic solar cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Goszczak, Arkadiusz Jaroslaw; Rubahn, Horst-Günter; Madsen, Morten

    Organic solar cells (OSC’s) have attracted much attention in the past years due to their potential low-cost, light-weight and mechanical flexibility. A method for improving the power conversion efficiencies of the devices is by incorporating structured electrodes in the solar cell architecture, a...... ordered and discorded dimple arrangement and their contribution to light management is presented. Such dimples can later be employed to fabricate nanostructured electrodes in P3HT/PCBM organic solar cells....

  15. Genetic heterogeneity of activating mutations of the luteinizing hormone receptor gene in familial male-limited precocious puberty

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Laue, L.; Chan, W.Y.; Wu, S.M. [Georgetown Univ. Medical Center, Washington, DC (United States)] [and others

    1994-09-01

    Familial male-limited precocious puberty (FMPP) is an autosomal dominant disorder characterized by elevated serum levels of testosterone, low levels of gonadotropins, and Leydig cell hyperplasia. Recently, 3 mutations have been found in FMPP families which encode substitution of Gly for Asp 578, Ile for Met 571, and Ile for Thr 577 in transmembrane helix 6 (TM 6) of the luteinizing hormone receptor (LHR). We have studied 28 additional unrelated FMPP families. Genomic DNA was isolated from affected males and PCR was performed to amplify a fragment of the LHR gene encoding amino acid residues 441 to 594. MspI restriction enzyme digests were positive for the Asp 578 to Gly mutation in 22 families. Four new mutations were found in the remaining 6 families: an A to C transition encoding substitution of Leu for Ile 542 in transmembrane helix 5 (TM 5), an A to G transition encoding substitution of Gly for Asp 564 in the third cytoplasmic loop, a G to T transition encoding substitution of Try for Asp 578 in TM 6, and a T to C transition encoding substitution of Arg for Cys 581 in TM 6 of the LHR. 293 cells transfected with cDNAs for each of the 4 mutant LHRs, created by site-directed mutagenesis of the wild-type LHR cDNA, exhibited markedly increased levels of basal cAMP production in the absence of agonist, indicating constitutive activation of the mutant LHRs. We conclude that substitution of residues at multiple sites with TM 5, TM 6, and the intervening third cytoplasmic loop of the LHR cause constitutive receptor activation resulting in FMPP. These findings allow future diagnosis of affected patients and provide the basis to study the receptor domains involved in G-protein activation.

  16. Ciprofloxacin Improves the Stemness of Human Dermal Papilla Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chayanin Kiratipaiboon

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Improvement in the expansion method of adult stem cells may augment their use in regenerative therapy. Using human dermal papilla cell line as well as primary dermal papilla cells as model systems, the present study demonstrated that ciprofloxacin treatment could prevent the loss of stemness during culture. Clonogenicity and stem cell markers of dermal papilla cells were shown to gradually decrease in the culture in a time-dependent manner. Treatment of the cells with nontoxic concentrations of ciprofloxacin could maintain both stem cell morphology and clonogenicity, as well as all stem cells markers. We found that ciprofloxacin exerted its effect through ATP-dependent tyrosine kinase/glycogen synthase kinase3β dependent mechanism which in turn upregulated β-catenin. Besides, ciprofloxacin was shown to induce epithelial-mesenchymal transition in DPCs as the transcription factors ZEB1 and Snail were significantly increased. Furthermore, the self-renewal proteins of Wnt/β-catenin pathway, namely, Nanog and Oct-4 were significantly upregulated in the ciprofloxacin-treated cells. The effects of ciprofloxacin in preserving stem cell features were confirmed in the primary dermal papilla cells directly obtained from human hair follicles. Together, these results revealed a novel application of ciprofloxacin for stem cell maintenance and provided the underlying mechanisms that are responsible for the stemness in dermal papilla cells.

  17. Precocious Puberty

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... three-to-six months after breasts develop). • Other body hair grows. • First period usually starts two to two- ... hair grows. • There is a growth spurt. • Other body hair grows. If boys show major development before age ...

  18. Memory improves precision of cell sensing in fluctuating environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aquino, Gerardo; Tweedy, Luke; Heinrich, Doris; Endres, Robert G.

    2014-07-01

    Biological cells are often found to sense their chemical environment near the single-molecule detection limit. Surprisingly, this precision is higher than simple estimates of the fundamental physical limit, hinting towards active sensing strategies. In this work, we analyse the effect of cell memory, e.g. from slow biochemical processes, on the precision of sensing by cell-surface receptors. We derive analytical formulas, which show that memory significantly improves sensing in weakly fluctuating environments. However, surprisingly when memory is adjusted dynamically, the precision is always improved, even in strongly fluctuating environments. In support of this prediction we quantify the directional biases in chemotactic Dictyostelium discoideum cells in a flow chamber with alternating chemical gradients. The strong similarities between cell sensing and control engineering suggest universal problem-solving strategies of living matter.

  19. Validation of the doubly labeled water method in growing precocial birds : The importance of assumptions concerning evaporative water loss

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Visser, GH; Schekkerman, H

    1999-01-01

    The doubly labeled water (DLW) method was validated against respiration gas analysis in growing precocial chicks of the black-tailed godwit (Limosa limosa) and the northern lapwing (Vanellus vanellus). To calculate the rate of CO2 production from DLW measurements, Lifson and McClintock's equations

  20. Influence of GnRH analogue on body mass index in girls with precocious puberty: a prospective study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heshmat Moaieri

    2014-06-01

    Conclusion: Gonadotropin-releasing hormone analog (GnRHa therapy in central precocious puberty (CPP is safe for BMI and increasing of BMI is not significant, long- term follow-up study is required to elucidate whether GnRHa treatment affects adult obesity. Using growth hormone concomitantly, the effect on increasing height is significant.

  1. Deltamethrin as inductor agent of precocious ovarian degeneration in Rhipicephalus sanguineus s.l. (Acari: Ixodidae) ticks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camargo-Mathias, Maria Izabel; Pereira, Natalia Rubio Claret; da Silva Reis, Camila; de Almeida, Cristiane Regina; Dos Santos Mendes, Douglas Rodrigo; de Araújo, Giselle Bezerra; Postali, Lays; Figueroa, Tober; Ferreira, Allan Roberto Fernandes; Santos, Juan Parente; de Oliveira, Patrícia Rosa

    2017-06-01

    The cosmopolitan species Rhipicephalus sanguineus s.l. is one of the most widely distributed ticks all over the world. These ectoparasites are vectors of several pathogens and cause significant direct damage to their hosts. The biological success of these ectoparasites has been attributed to their ovaries and salivary glands, organs that ensure their survival in various environmental conditions. The importance of the ovaries in ticks is that, after mating, the individuals are able to lay approximately three thousand eggs. The present study had the objective to demonstrate the effects of deltamethrin obtained from the product Butox P CE 25 ® (MSD Saúde Animal, São Paulo, Brazil) on the ovarian development of R. sanguineus s.l. females. The chemical was tested in the concentrations of 25, 50, 100 and 200 ppm (respectively 80, 40, 20 and 10 times lower than the recommended by the manufacturer). Through the application of histological techniques and HE staining, the results showed that the deltamethrin was potentially able to modify the morphophysiology of the oocytes in all developmental stages, interfering in the vitellogenesis, causing intense vacuolation, cytoplasmic disorganization, and alterations in the chorion secretion. In addition, the chemical affected the germ vesicle of some oocytes, causing damages and hypertrophy, fragmenting the chromatin and forming bodies strongly stained by hematoxylin. Therefore, this study confirmed that the deltamethrin had an important action on the reproductive system of the R. sanguineus s.l. females, causing the precocious structural disorganization of the germ cells, consequently preventing the generation of new individuals.

  2. Improved Cell Culture Method for Growing Contracting Skeletal Muscle Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marquette, Michele L.; Sognier, Marguerite A.

    2013-01-01

    An improved method for culturing immature muscle cells (myoblasts) into a mature skeletal muscle overcomes some of the notable limitations of prior culture methods. The development of the method is a major advance in tissue engineering in that, for the first time, a cell-based model spontaneously fuses and differentiates into masses of highly aligned, contracting myotubes. This method enables (1) the construction of improved two-dimensional (monolayer) skeletal muscle test beds; (2) development of contracting three-dimensional tissue models; and (3) improved transplantable tissues for biomedical and regenerative medicine applications. With adaptation, this method also offers potential application for production of other tissue types (i.e., bone and cardiac) from corresponding precursor cells.

  3. An improved lithium-vanadium pentoxide cell and comparison with a lithium-thionyl chloride cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voorn, G.

    1985-03-01

    This paper describes a programme of experiments conducted to assess the effects of: (a) diluting the electrolyte in lithium-vanadium pentoxide cells; (b) optimizing the volume of electrolyte per unit cathode mass. This programme led to the development of an improved cell, the performance of which is compared with that of a lithium-thionyl chloride cell of similar configuration.

  4. Improved lithium-vanadium pentoxide cell and comparison with a lithium-thionyl chloride cell

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Voorn, G.

    1985-01-15

    This paper describes a programme of experiments conducted to assess the effects of: (a) diluting the electrolyte in lithium-vanadium pentoxide cells; (b) optimizing the volume of electrolyte per unit cathode mass. This programme led to the development of an improved cell, the performance of which is compared with that of a lithium-thionyl chloride cell of similar configuration.

  5. Continued SOFC cell and stack technology and improved production methods

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wandel, M.; Brodersen, K.; Phair, J. (and others)

    2009-05-15

    Within this project significant results are obtained on a number of very diverse areas ranging from development of cell production, metallic creep in interconnect to assembling and test of stacks with foot print larger than 500 cm2. Out of 38 milestones 28 have been fulfilled and 10 have been partly fulfilled. This project has focused on three main areas: 1) The continued cell development and optimization of manufacturing processes aiming at production of large foot-print cells, improving cell performance and development environmentally more benign production methods. 2) Stack technology - especially stacks with large foot print and improving the stack design with respect to flow geometry and gas leakages. 3) Development of stack components with emphasis on sealing (for 2G as well as 3G), interconnect (coat, architecture and creep) and test development. Production of cells with a foot print larger than 500 cm2 is very difficult due to the brittleness of the cells and great effort has been put into this topic. Eight cells were successfully produced making it possible to assemble and test a real stack thereby giving valuable results on the prospects of stacks with large foot print. However, the yield rate is very low and a significant development to increase this yield lies ahead. Several lessons were learned on the stack level regarding 'large foot print' stacks. Modelling studies showed that the width of the cell primarily is limited by production and handling of the cell whereas the length (in the flow direction) is limited by e.g. pressure drop and necessary manifolding. The optimal cell size in the flow direction was calculated to be between approx20 cm and < 30 cm. From an economical point of view the production yield is crucial and stacks with large foot print cell area are only feasible if the cell production yield is significantly enhanced. Co-casting has been pursued as a production technique due to the possibilities in large scale production

  6. Leuprolide Acetate 1-Month Depot for Central Precocious Puberty: Hormonal Suppression and Recovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neely EKirk

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Methods. This prospective US multicenter trial of leuprolide acetate 1-month depot (7.5–15 mg for central precocious puberty utilized an open-label treatment period, long-term follow-up, and adult callback. Forty-nine females Results. Subjects were treated for years. Mean peak GnRH-stimulated LH and FSH were prepubertal after the first dose and remained suppressed throughout treatment. During treatment, mean estradiol decreased to the limit of detection and mean testosterone decreased but remained above prepubertal norms. During posttreatment follow-up ( years, all patients achieved a pubertal hormonal response within 1 year and menses were reported in all females ≥12 years old. No impairment of reproductive function was observed at adulthood (mean age: 24.8 years.

  7. Increased risk of precocious puberty in internationally adopted children in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Teilmann, G.; Pedersen, Carsten Bøcker; Skakkebæk, N.E.

    2006-01-01

    settings from birth to adoption, whereas most other countries are reported to take care of the children in orphanages before adoption. It can only be speculated whether a relation between preadoption living conditions and later risk of precocious puberty exists. Genetic factors play a key role...... shown long-term effects of certain prenatal and postnatal growth patterns, including advancement in pubertal maturation after poor intrauterine growth and catch-up growth during childhood. Different growth patterns and dietary habits between adoptees and children immigrating with their families might...... contribute to explain our findings. It has been hypothesized that stressful psychosocial factors in infancy and childhood may lead to earlier pubertal maturation. In general, adoptees have experienced several traumatic life events, and it may be speculated that these events alter the susceptibility...

  8. Herbal medicine for idiopathic central precocious puberty: A protocol for a systematic review of controlled trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hye Lim; Lee, Yoo Been; Choi, Jun-Yong; Lee, Ju Ah

    2018-03-01

    Herbal medicine is widely used in East Asia to treat idiopathic central precocious puberty (ICPP). Most of the available clinical trials that investigated herbal medicine for ICPP have been included in this review. This systematic review will assess the efficacy and safety of herbal medicine for ICPP. Eleven databases, including Asian databases, will be searched for studies conducted through 2018. We will include randomized controlled trials assessing herbal medicine for ICPP. The risk of bias will be evaluated using the Cochrane risk of bias assessment tool, and confidence in the cumulative evidence will be evaluated using the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation instrument. This systematic review will be published in a peer-reviewed journal and disseminated both electronically and in print. The review will be updated to inform and guide health care practices. PROSPER 2018 CRD42018087988.

  9. Advanced bone age as an indicator facilitates the diagnosis of precocious puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yue-Qin Xu

    Full Text Available Abstract Objective: Diagnosis of central precocious puberty has always been challenging in clinical practice. As an important method in the diagnosis of central precocious puberty, luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone stimulation test is complex and time-consuming. In many cases, clinical traits are inconsistent with luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone stimulation test results, therefore not reliable for diagnosis. In this study, the authors intended to find an indicator that predicts the results of the luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone stimulation test among subjects with early pubertal signs. Methods: Cases of 382 girls with early breast development before 8 years old and luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone stimulation test before 9 years old were included and underwent follow-up tests. Patients with peak luteinizing hormone level ≥5 IU/L were considered positive in the luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone stimulation test. Anthropometric data, body mass index, bone age evaluation, blood hormones levels of luteinizing hormone, estradiol, follicle-stimulating hormone, and uterine and ovarian volumes were analyzed. Results: Subjects with positive results in the initial test demonstrated early bone maturation, accelerated growth, and elevated basal blood luteinizing hormone, estradiol, and follicle-stimulating hormone levels, when compared with subjects with negative results in the initial test. Subjects with positive results in the follow-up test presented a more advanced bone age and more accelerated linear growth, when compared with subjects with negative results in the follow-up test. Conclusions: According to the statistical analysis, advanced bone age is the most effective predictor of the result of luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone stimulation test.

  10. Improved Membrane Materials for PEM Fuel Cell Application

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kenneth A. Mauritz; Robert B. Moore

    2008-06-30

    The overall goal of this project is to collect and integrate critical structure/property information in order to develop methods that lead to significant improvements in the durability and performance of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) materials. This project is focused on the fundamental improvement of PEMFC membrane materials with respect to chemical, mechanical and morphological durability as well as the development of new inorganically-modified membranes.

  11. IMHEX fuel cell repeat component manufacturing continuous improvement accomplishments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jakaitis, L.A.; Petraglia, V.J.; Bryson, E.S. [M-C Power Corp., Burr Ridge, IL (United States)] [and others

    1996-12-31

    M-C Power is taking a power generation technology that has been proven in the laboratory and is making it a commercially competitive product. There are many areas in which this technology required scale up and refinement to reach the market entry goals for the IMHEX{reg_sign} molten carbonate fuel cell power plant. One of the primary areas that needed to be addressed was the manufacturing of the fuel cell stack. Up to this point, the fuel cell stack and associated components were virtually hand made for each system to be tested. M-C Power has now continuously manufactured the repeat components for three 250 kW stacks. M-C Power`s manufacturing strategy integrated both evolutionary and revolutionary improvements into its comprehensive commercialization effort. M-C Power`s objectives were to analyze and continuously improve stack component manufacturing and assembly techniques consistent with established specifications and commercial scale production requirements. Evolutionary improvements are those which naturally occur as the production rates are increased and experience is gained. Examples of evolutionary (learning curve) improvements included reducing scrap rates and decreasing raw material costs by buying in large quantities. Revolutionary improvements result in significant design and process changes to meet cost and performance requirements of the market entry system. Revolutionary changes often involve identifying new methods and developing designs to accommodate the new process. Based upon our accomplishments, M-C Power was able to reduce the cost of continuously manufactured fuel cell repeat components from the first to third 250 kW stack by 63%. This paper documents the continuous improvement accomplishments realized by M-C Power during IMHEX{reg_sign} fuel cell repeat component manufacturing.

  12. Improving Perovskite Solar Cells: Insights From a Validated Device Model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sherkar, Tejas S.; Momblona, Cristina; Gil-Escrig, Lidon; Bolink, Henk J.; Koster, L. Jan Anton

    2017-01-01

    To improve the efficiency of existing perovskite solar cells (PSCs), a detailed understanding of the underlying device physics during their operation is essential. Here, a device model has been developed and validated that describes the operation of PSCs and quantitatively explains the role of

  13. Fabrication approaches for plasmon-improved photovoltaic cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gritti, Claudia; Malureanu, Radu; Kardynal, B.

    During this talk we will present various fabrication approaches to improve the performance of photovoltaic (PV) cells by using metallic nanoparticles in order to generate photocurrent below the bandgap. This effect is possible due to the generation of surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) in optimized...

  14. Flavonoid insertion into cell walls improves wood properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ermeydan, Mahmut A; Cabane, Etienne; Masic, Admir; Koetz, Joachim; Burgert, Ingo

    2012-11-01

    Wood has an excellent mechanical performance, but wider utilization of this renewable resource as an engineering material is limited by unfavorable properties such as low dimensional stability upon moisture changes and a low durability. However, some wood species are known to produce a wood of higher quality by inserting mainly phenolic substances in the already formed cell walls--a process so-called heartwood formation. In the present study, we used the heartwood formation in black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia) as a source of bioinspiration and transferred principles of the modification in order to improve spruce wood properties (Picea abies) by a chemical treatment with commercially available flavonoids. We were able to effectively insert hydrophobic flavonoids in the cell wall after a tosylation treatment for activation. The chemical treatment reduced the water uptake of the wood cell walls and increased the dimensional stability of the bulk spruce wood. Further analysis of the chemical interaction of the flavonoid with the structural cell wall components revealed the basic principle of this bioinspired modification. Contrary to established modification treatments, which mainly address the hydroxyl groups of the carbohydrates with hydrophilic substances, the hydrophobic flavonoids are effective by a physical bulking in the cell wall most probably stabilized by π-π interactions. A biomimetic transfer of the underlying principle may lead to alternative cell wall modification procedures and improve the performance of wood as an engineering material.

  15. Immunotherapy Using Dendritic Cells against Multiple Myeloma: How to Improve?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thanh-Nhan Nguyen-Pham

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Multiple myeloma (MM is a good target disease in which one can apply cellular immunotherapy, which is based on the graft-versus-myeloma effect. This role of immune effector cells provides the framework for the development of immune-based therapeutic options that use antigen-presenting cells (APCs with increased potency, such as dendritic cells (DCs, in MM. Current isolated idiotype (Id, myeloma cell lysates, myeloma dying cells, DC-myeloma hybrids, or DC transfected with tumor-derived RNA has been used for immunotherapy with DCs. Immunological inhibitory cytokines, such as TGF-β, IL-10, IL-6 and VEGF, which are produced from myeloma cells, can modulate antitumor host immune response, including the abrogation of DC function, by constitutive activation of STAT3. Therefore, even the immune responses have been observed in clinical trials, the clinical response was rarely improved following DC vaccinations in MM patients. We are going to discuss how to improve the efficacy of DC vaccination in MM.

  16. Improving the photovoltaic performance of perovskite solar cells with acetate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Qian; Li, G. R.; Song, Jian; Zhao, Yulong; Qiang, Yinghuai; Gao, X. P.

    2016-01-01

    In an all-solid-state perovskite solar cell, methylammonium lead halide film is in charge of generating photo-excited electrons, thus its quality can directly influence the final photovoltaic performance of the solar cell. This paper accentuates a very simple chemical approach to improving the quality of a perovskite film with a suitable amount of acetic acid. With introduction of acetate ions, a homogeneous, continual and hole-free perovskite film comprised of high-crystallinity grains is obtained. UV-visible spectra, steady-state and time-resolved photoluminescence (PL) spectra reveal that the obtained perovskite film under the optimized conditions shows a higher light absorption, more efficient electron transport, and faster electron extraction to the adjoining electron transport layer. The features result in the optimized perovskite film can provide an improved short-circuit current. The corresponding solar cells with a planar configuration achieves an improved power conversion efficiency of 13.80%, and the highest power conversion efficiency in the photovoltaic measurements is up to 14.71%. The results not only provide a simple approach to optimizing perovskite films but also present a novel angle of view on fabricating high-performance perovskite solar cells. PMID:27934924

  17. Methods to Improve Adoptive T-Cell Therapy for Melanoma

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Donia, Marco; Hansen, Morten; Sendrup, Sarah L

    2013-01-01

    Further development of adoptive T-cell therapy (ACT) with autologous tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) has the potential to markedly change the long-term prognosis of patients with metastatic melanoma, and modifications of the original protocol that can improve its clinical efficacy are highly...... desirable. In this study, we demonstrated that a high in vitro tumor reactivity of infusion products was associated with clinical responses upon adoptive transfer. In addition, we systematically characterized the responses of a series of TIL products to relevant autologous short term-cultured melanoma cell...

  18. Radiation improves gene transfer into human ovarian carcinoma cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Canaday, Daniel; Zeng Ming; Cerniglia, George; Stevens, Craig W.

    1997-01-01

    Purpose/Objective: Poor gene transfer is the major stumbling block to successful gene therapy today. We hypothesized that ionizing radiation might activate cellular recombination, and so improve stable gene transfer. During studies to quantitate radiation activated recombination, we also found that both plasmid and adenoviral vector transduction could be increased by irradiation. The studies presented here describe the effects of irradiation on gene transduction efficiency (both transient and stable transduction) in several human ovarian carcinoma lines, as a prelude to in vivo animal studies. Materials and Methods: The effect of irradiation on stable gene transfer efficiency was determined in human ovarian carcinoma cell lines (SKOV3, CAOV3 and PA1). Either irradiated or unirradiated cells were transfected with pRSVZ plasmid (containing a LacZ expression cassette) in either the supercoiled and linearized (XmnI) forms and β-galactosidase expression followed with time. Transfection efficiency was measured by flow cytometry following FDG staining at 0, 48, and 96 hours after irradiation. FDG is converted to a fluorescent metabolite by LacZ, and thus reflects the transfection efficiency of the LacZ containing vector. Vector quantitation was also performed by southern hybridization. Stable transduction efficiency was measured 14 -35 days after irradiation. Optimization of the time of irradiation with respect to transfection was performed. Since cells demonstrated increased stable recombination for as long as 96 hours after irradiation, continuous low dose rate and multiple radiation fractions were also tested. These experiments were repeated using the Ad5CMVlacZ. Dividing cells were exposed to Ad5CMVlacZ at an MOI of 0.1,1,5,10 and 100 to determine optimum transfection concentration. Transduction efficiency was again measured at various intervals to determine the radiation dose and interval post transfection which provides the maximum increase in transfection

  19. GnRH-dependent precocious puberty manifested at the age of 14 months in a girl with 47,XXX karyotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skordis, Nicos; Ferrari, Eleana; Antoniadou, Aria; Phylactou, Leonidas A; Fanis, Pavlos; Neocleous, Vassos

    2017-07-01

    This case report describes a 47,XXX girl who presented very early, at the age of 14 months, with signs of sexual precocity (breast and pubic hair development, menarche) and was finally diagnosed with GnRH dependent precocious puberty with no evidence of underlying central nervous system pathology. Molecular testing did not identify any genetic defect in any of the genes tested (KISS1, KISS1R, DLK1 and the intronless MKRN3). Though previous studies have shown a link between karyotype 47,XXX and precocious puberty, this is the youngest patient reported so far. Treatment with GnRH analog was commenced and proved to be effective, indicating a successful suppression of the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis.

  20. Defining cell culture conditions to improve human norovirus infectivity assays

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Straub, Tim M. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Hutchison, Janine R. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Bartholomew, Rachel A. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Valdez, Catherine O. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Valentine, Nancy B. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Dohnalkova, Alice [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Ozanich, Richard M. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Bruckner-Lea, Cindy J. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2013-01-10

    Significant difficulties remain for determining whether human noroviruses (hNoV) recovered from water, food, and environmental samples are infectious. Three-dimensional tissue culture of human intestinal cells has shown promise in developing an infectivity assay, but reproducibility, even within a single laboratory, remains problematic. From the literature and our observations, we hypothesized that the common factors that leads to more reproducible hNoV infectivity in vitro requires that the cell line be 1) of human gastrointestinal origin, 2) expresses apical microvilli, and 3) be a positive secretor cell line. The C2BBe1 cell line, which is a brush-border producing clone of Caco-2, meets these three criteria. When challenged with Genogroup II viruses, we observed a 2 Log10 increase in viral RNA titer. A passage experiment with GII viruses showed evidence of the ability to propagate hNoV by both reverse transcription quantitative PCR (qRT-PCR) and microscopy. Using 3-D C2BBe1 cells improves reproducibility of the infectivity assay for hNoV, but the assay can still be variable. Two sources of variability include the cells themselves (mixed phenotypes of small and large intestine) and initial titer measurements using quantitative reverse transcription PCR (qRT-PCR) that measures all RNA vs. plaque assays that measure infectious virus.

  1. A case of an adoptive girl with precocious puberty: the problem of age estimation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Donno, Antonio; Roca, Roberta; Introna, Francesco; Santoro, Valeria

    2013-09-10

    Age estimation is one of the main tasks of forensic anthropology and odontology, both on the dead and the living. In living subjects, age estimation may be used to establish an individual's status as a minor in cases involving adoption, criminal responsibility, child pornography, and those seeking asylum, especially where adequate identification documents are lacking. The authors report a case about age assessment of a girl born in Mbujimayi (Democratic Republic of Congo) and later adopted in Italy. The birth certificate issued after finding the child in a state of abandonment (in December 2007), bore date of 12.12.2004, but this was in contrast with the year of birth - 2003 - stated on the certification available to the center that had provided accommodation to the girl in Africa. Her adoptive parents reported that the child had been diagnosed with precocious puberty and was thus under treatment. She weighed 32.5 kg and was 132.5 cm tall. Body mass index (BMI) corresponded to the range between 9.5 and 14 years of age. The assessment of maturity indicators (sexual characteristics) placed the child at the lower limits of Stage II of Tanner's classification (sparse growth of long, slightly darkened, downy straight pubic hair; elevation of the breast and nipple as a small mound with increased diameter of the areolae). The skeletal age was determined by taking X-rays of the hand and wrist using Fels, TW2 and Greulich and Pyle methods. Dental growth was assessed through orthopantomogram using Demirjian's technique. The methods applied were adjusted considering the studies on African population found in the literature, and a skeletal and dental age of 10 years was established. Afterwards, the wrist X-rays performed at the Children's Hospital of Bari, 7 months before our investigation, revealed a skeletal age of 7 years. This evidence showed that, despite the treatment the child had promptly initiated, early puberty had influenced the skeletal growth with an acceleration

  2. Prostate specific antigen in boys with precocious puberty before and during gonadal suppression by GnRH agonist treatment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Juul, A; Müller, J; Skakkebaek, N E

    1997-01-01

    In healthy boys, the pituitary-gonadal axis exhibits diurnal variation in early puberty. Serum testosterone levels are higher during the night and low or immeasurable during the day. These fluctuating levels of circulating androgens in early pubertal boys are difficult to monitor. Prostate specific......RH agonists to evaluate the effect of normal and precocious puberty on PSA levels and to study the correlation between testosterone and PSA in boys....

  3. Central precocious puberty in a patient with X-linked adrenal hypoplasia congenita and Xp21 contiguous gene deletion syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji Won Koh

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available X-linked adrenal hypoplasia congenita is caused by the mutation of DAX-1 gene (dosage-sensitive sex reversal, adrenal hypoplasia critical region, on chromosome X, gene 1, and can occur as part of a contiguous gene deletion syndrome in association with glycerol kinase (GK deficiency, Duchenne muscular dystrophy and X-linked interleukin-1 receptor accessory protein-like 1 (IL1RAPL1 gene deficiency. It is usually associated with hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, although in rare cases, it has been reported to occur in normal puberty or even central precocious puberty. This study addresses a case in which central precocious puberty developed in a boy with X-linked adrenal hypoplasia congenita who had complete deletion of the genes DAX-1, GK and IL1RAPL1 (Xp21 contiguous gene deletion syndrome. Initially he was admitted for the management of adrenal crisis at the age of 2 months, and managed with hydrocortisone and florinef. At 45 months of age, his each testicular volumes of 4 mL and a penile length of 5 cm were noted, with pubic hair of Tanner stage 2. His bone age was advanced and a gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH stimulation test showed a luteinizing hormone peak of 8.26 IU/L, confirming central precocious puberty. He was then treated with a GnRH agonist, as well as steroid replacement therapy. In Korea, this is the first case of central precocious puberty developed in a male patient with X-linked adrenal hypoplasia congenita.

  4. Improved Electrodes and Electrolytes for Dye-Based Solar Cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harry R. Allcock; Thomas E. Mallouk; Mark W. Horn

    2011-10-26

    The most important factor in limiting the stability of dye-sensitized solar cells is the use of volatile liquid solvents in the electrolytes, which causes leakage during extended operation especially at elevated temperatures. This, together with the necessary complex sealing of the cells, seriously hampers the industrial-scale manufacturing and commercialization feasibilities of DSSCs. The objective of this program was to bring about a significant improvement in the performance and longevity of dye-based solar cells leading to commercialization. This had been studied in two ways first through development of low volatility solid, gel or liquid electrolytes, second through design and fabrication of TiO2 sculptured thin film electrodes.

  5. Temporal characteristics of the speech of typical and lexically precocious two-year-old children: preliminary observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Bruce L.; McGregor, Karla K.

    2002-05-01

    To examine the extent to which temporal properties of speech might be affected by children's lexical knowledge as opposed to their age and general development, productions by a group of two-year-olds with average-sized vocabularies were compared with those of a group of age-matched, lexically precocious children. It was hypothesized that because of their additional lexical knowledge and experience, the lexically precocious children would manifest shorter durations and/or less temporal variability in their speech. Multiple repetitions of several different target words were obtained from children with vocabularies at about the 50th percentile (ca. 300 words) versus the 90th percentile (ca. 600 words) on the MacArthur Communicative Development Inventory. In general, acoustic measurements indicated that there were no significant differences between the groups in terms of their segmental durations or temporal variability. Thus, the additional linguistic knowledge and experience the precocious talkers had gained from having learned to produce many more words did not appear to have influenced temporal properties of their speech. This suggests that the children's age and/or other aspects of their development had a greater impact on temporal aspects of their speech than did their level of lexical knowledge and experience.

  6. Tailoring cyanobacterial cell factory for improved industrial properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luan, Guodong; Lu, Xuefeng

    2018-01-10

    Photosynthetic biomanufacturing provides a promising solution for sustainable production of biofuels and biochemicals. Cyanobacteria are among the most promising microbial platforms for the construction of photosynthetic cell factories. Metabolic engineering of cyanobacteria has enabled effective photosynthetic synthesis of diverse natural or non-natural metabolites, while commercialization of photosynthetic biomanufacturing is usually restricted by process and economic feasibilities. In actual outdoor conditions, active cell growth and product synthesis is restricted to narrow light exposure windows of the day-night cycles and is threatened by diverse physical, chemical, and biological environmental stresses. For biomass harvesting and bioproduct recovery, energy and cost consuming processing and equipment is required, which further decreases the economic and environmental competitiveness of the entire process. To facilitate scaled photosynthetic biomanufacturing, lots of efforts have been made to engineer cyanobacterial cell properties required by robust & continual cultivation and convenient & efficient recovery. In this review, we specifically summarized recently reported engineering strategies on optimizing industrial properties of cyanobacterial cells. Through systematically re-editing the metabolism, morphology, mutualism interaction of cyanobacterial chassis cells, the adaptabilities and compatibilities of the cyanobacterial cell factories to the industrial process could be significantly improved. Cell growth and product synthesis of the tailored cyanobacterial cells could be expanded and maintained at night and in stressful environments, while convenient biomass harvesting could also be expected. For developing more feasible cyanobacterial photosynthetic biomanufacturing in large scale, we here propose the importance of tailoring industrial properties of cyanobacteria and outline the directions that should be exploited in the future. Copyright © 2018

  7. Cysteine modified polyaniline films improve biocompatibility for two cell lines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yslas, Edith I., E-mail: eyslas@exa.unrc.edu.ar [Departamento de Biología Molecular, Universidad Nacional de Río Cuarto, Agencia Postal Nro3, X580BYA Río Cuarto (Argentina); Cavallo, Pablo; Acevedo, Diego F.; Barbero, César A. [Departamento de Química, Universidad Nacional de Río Cuarto, Agencia Postal Nro3, X580BYA Río Cuarto (Argentina); Rivarola, Viviana A. [Departamento de Biología Molecular, Universidad Nacional de Río Cuarto, Agencia Postal Nro3, X580BYA Río Cuarto (Argentina)

    2015-06-01

    This work focuses on one of the most exciting application areas of conjugated conducting polymers, which is cell culture and tissue engineering. To improve the biocompatibility of conducting polymers we present an easy method that involves the modification of the polymer backbone using L-cysteine. In this publication, we show the synthesis of polyaniline (PANI) films supported onto Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) films, and modified using cysteine (PANI-Cys) in order to generate a biocompatible substrate for cell culture. The PANI-Cys films are characterized by Fourier Transform infrared and UV–visible spectroscopy. The changes in the hydrophilicity of the polymer films after and before the modification were tested using contact angle measurements. After modification the contact angle changes from 86° ± 1 to 90° ± 1, suggesting a more hydrophylic surface. The adhesion properties of LM2 and HaCaT cell lines on the surface of PANI-Cys films in comparison with tissue culture plastic (TCP) are studied. The PANI-Cys film shows better biocompatibility than PANI film for both cell lines. The cell morphologies on the TCP and PANI-Cys film were examined by florescence and Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM). Microscopic observations show normal cellular behavior when PANI-Cys is used as a substrate of both cell lines (HaCaT and LM2) as when they are cultured on TCP. The ability of these PANI-Cys films to support cell attachment and growth indicates their potential use as biocompatible surfaces and in tissue engineering. - Highlights: • A new surface PANI-Cys was produced on films of polyethylene terephthalate. • The relationship between surface characteristics and biocompatibility is analyzed. • The PANI-Cys film presents good biocompatibility for two cell lines.

  8. Microstructured Electrolyte Membranes to Improve Fuel Cell Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Xue

    Fuel cells, with the advantages of high efficiency, low greenhouse gas emission, and long lifetime are a promising technology for both portable power and stationary power sources. The development of efficient electrolyte membranes with high ionic conductivity, good mechanical durability and dense structure at low cost remains a challenge to the commercialization of fuel cells. This thesis focuses on exploring novel composite polymer membranes and ceramic electrolytes with the microstructure engineered to improve performance in direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs) and solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs), respectively. Polymer/particle composite membranes hold promise to meet the demands of DMFCs at lower cost. The structure of composite membranes was controlled by aligning proton conducting particles across the membrane thickness under an applied electric field. The field-induced structural changes caused the membranes to display an enhanced water uptake, proton conductivity, and methanol permeability in comparison to membranes prepared without an applied field. Although both methanol permeability and proton conductivity are enhanced by the applied field, the permeability increase is relatively lower than the proton conductivity improvement, which results in enhanced proton/methanol selectivity and improved DMFC performance. Apatite ceramics are a new class of fast ion conductors being studied as alternative SOFC electrolytes in the intermediate temperature range. An electrochemical/hydrothermal deposition method was developed to grow fully dense apatite membranes containing well-developed crystals with c-axis alignment to promote ion conductivity. Hydroxyapatite seed crystals were first deposited onto a metal substrate electrochemically. Subsequent ion substitution during the hydrothermal growth process promoted the formation of dense, fully crystalline films with microstructure optimal for ion transport. The deposition parameters were systematically investigated, such as

  9. Improved Cathode Structure for a Direct Methanol Fuel Cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdez, Thomas; Narayanan, Sekharipuram

    2005-01-01

    An improved cathode structure on a membrane/electrode assembly has been developed for a direct methanol fuel cell, in a continuing effort to realize practical power systems containing such fuel cells. This cathode structure is intended particularly to afford better cell performance at a low airflow rate. A membrane/electrode assembly of the type for which the improved cathode structure was developed (see Figure 1) is fabricated in a process that includes brush painting and spray coating of catalyst layers onto a polymer-electrolyte membrane and onto gas-diffusion backings that also act as current collectors. The aforementioned layers are then dried and hot-pressed together. When completed, the membrane/electrode assembly contains (1) an anode containing a fine metal black of Pt/Ru alloy, (2) a membrane made of Nafion 117 or equivalent (a perfluorosulfonic acid-based hydrophilic, proton-conducting ion-exchange polymer), (3) a cathode structure (in the present case, the improved cathode structure described below), and (4) the electrically conductive gas-diffusion backing layers, which are made of Toray 060(TradeMark)(or equivalent) carbon paper containing between 5 and 6 weight percent of poly(tetrafluoroethylene). The need for an improved cathode structure arises for the following reasons: In the design and operation of a fuel-cell power system, the airflow rate is a critical parameter that determines the overall efficiency, cell voltage, and power density. It is desirable to operate at a low airflow rate in order to obtain thermal and water balance and to minimize the size and mass of the system. The performances of membrane/electrode assemblies of prior design are limited at low airflow rates. Methanol crossover increases the required airflow rate. Hence, one way to reduce the required airflow rate is to reduce the effect of methanol crossover. Improvement of the cathode structure - in particular, addition of hydrophobic particles to the cathode - has been

  10. Global hypoxia induced impairment in learning and spatial memory is associated with precocious hippocampal aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biswal, Suryanarayan; Sharma, Deepti; Kumar, Kushal; Nag, Tapas Chandra; Barhwal, Kalpana; Hota, Sunil Kumar; Kumar, Bhuvnesh

    2016-09-01

    Both chronological aging and chronic hypoxia stress have been reported to cause degeneration of hippocampal CA3 neurons and spatial memory impairment through independent pathways. However, the possible occurrence of precocious biological aging on exposure to single episode of global hypoxia resulting in impairment of learning and memory remains to be established. The present study thus aimed at bridging this gap in existing literature on hypoxia induced biological aging. Male Sprague Dawley rats were exposed to simulated hypobaric hypoxia (25,000ft) for different durations and were compared with aged rats. Behavioral studies in Morris Water Maze showed decline in learning abilities of both chronologically aged as well as hypoxic rats as evident from increased latency and pathlength to reach target platform. These behavioral changes in rats exposed to global hypoxia were associated with deposition of lipofuscin and ultrastructural changes in the mitochondria of hippocampal neurons that serve as hallmarks of aging. A single episode of chronic hypobaric hypoxia exposure also resulted in the up-regulation of pro-aging protein, S100A9 and down regulation of Tau, SNAP25, APOE and Sod2 in the hippocampus similar to that in aged rats indicating hypoxia induced accelerated aging. The present study therefore provides evidence for role of biological aging of hippocampal neurons in hypoxia induced impairment of learning and memory. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  11. Ovarian dysgerminoma with normal serum tumour markers presenting in a child with precocious puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naglaa M Kamal

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available A 7-year-old female child was presented to the emergency room with acute abdominal pain and vaginal bleeding. Her assessment revealed a firm large lower abdominal mass with evidence of precocious puberty with bilaterally symmetrically enlarged breast (Tanner stage B4-P1-A1. Abdominal imaging showed a well-defined soft midline pelvi-abdominal single mass measuring 7.0 × 12.6 × 11.7 cms with no ascites. Serum tumour markers including lactate dehydrogenase (LDH, beta-subunit of human chorionic gonadotropin (B-hCG and luteinizing hormone/follicular stimulating hormone (LH/FSH were all normal. At operation, there was a huge abdominal tumour weighing 558 grams, localized to the right ovary sparing the left ovary, uterus, lymph nodes and other abdominal organs. Unilateral right salpingo-oophorectomy was performed. Histopathologic examination revealed ovarian dysgerminoma with intact capsule; FIGO Ia. Immunohistochemical stainings were positive for placental alkaline phosphatase (PALP, CD 117(c-kit and calretinin focally but was negative for cancer antigen-125 (CA-125, B-hCG, S-100, carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA, and leukocyte common antigen (LCA. Being fitting in the low risk classification, the wait and see protocol was selected with strict follow-up with pediatric oncologist and pediatric surgeon. Along the duration of 2 years follow up, there was no more vaginal bleeding with dramatic reduction of the breast size and no recurrence.

  12. An 11-month-old girl with central precocious puberty caused by hypothalamic hamartoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Da Young Yoon

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Central precocious puberty (CPP is caused by premature activation of the hypothalamic-gonadal axis, and must be treated adequately. In particular, CPP that occurs at a relatively young age or in boys is likely to be caused by an organic lesion. Hypothalamic hamartoma (HH is the most common organic cause of CPP. The present case report describes an 11-month-old female infant who presented with vaginal bleeding and rapidly progressive secondary sex characteristics from the age of 6 months. She was diagnosed with CPP following the detection of HH via magnetic resonance imaging. The infant girl was successfully treated with gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist. After 6 months, her breast had regressed and clinical and radiological follow-up demonstrated stable findings with no evidence of tumor growth or secondary sexual characteristics until the fourth year after the initiation of treatment. This patient is the one of the youngest infants presenting with CPP and HH in Korea; treatment was successful over a relatively long follow-up period.

  13. Central Precocious Puberty: Treatment with Triptorelin 11.25 mg

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena Chiocca

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Few data are available on quarterly 11.25 mg GnRH analog treatment in central precocious puberty (CPP. Aim. To assess the efficacy of triptorelin 11.25 mg in children with CPP. Patients. 17 patients (16 females with CPP (7.9±0.9 years were treated with triptorelin 11.25 mg/90 days. Methods. Gonadotropins, basal-, and GnRH-stimulated peak, gonadal steroids, and pubertal signs were assessed at preinclusion and at inclusion visit, 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months of treatment. Results. At 3, 6, and 12 months, all patients had suppressed LH peak (<3 IU/L after GnRH stimulation, as well as prepubertal oestradiol levels. Mean LH peak values after GnRH test significantly decreased from 25.7±16.5 IU/L at baseline to 0.9±0.5 IU/L at M3 (<0.0001; they did not significantly changed at M6 and M12. Conclusions. Triptorelin 11.25 mg/90 days efficiently suppressed the pituitary-gonadal axis in children with CPP from first administration.

  14. Effects of growth environments and two environmental endocrine disruptors on children with idiopathic precocious puberty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Fang; Tao, Fang-biao; Liu, De-yun; Xu, Yuan-yuan; Hao, Jia-hu; Sun, Ying; Su, Pu-yu

    2012-05-01

    The incidence of idiopathic precocious puberty (IPP) might have an increasing trend. But the causes and risk factors of IPP are unknown. The objective of our study is to evaluate the effects of growth environments and two environmental endocrine disruptors (EDCs), zearalenone (ZEA), and 1,1-dichloro-2,2,bisethylene (p,p'-DDE), on patients with IPP. Case-control study. The study consisted of 78 IPP patients at diagnosis and 100 control children matched for age and sex. A questionnaire was designed to collect data on growth environments, and serum ZEA and p,p'-DDE were tested in all subjects. We analyzed data on growth environments, two EDCs, and biological interaction between growth environments and EDCs. In growth environments, small for gestational age, maternal physical disease during pregnancy, early maternal menarche, early puberty of same-degree relatives, and father's absence in 4- to 6-year olds were risk factors for children with IPP (P<0.05). Serum ZEA concentration, ZEA, and p,p'-DDE-positive rates in the IPP group were significantly higher than those in the control group (P<0.05). There was a biological interaction between growth environments and ZEA (relative excess risk due to interaction =34.562, attributable proportion due to interaction =0.745, synergy index =4.193). Results suggest possible effects of growth environments and two EDCs on the development of IPP. In addition, growth environments and ZEA have biological interaction that might increase the risk of developing IPP.

  15. [An analysis of cardiac autonomic nerve function in girls with idiopathic central precocious puberty].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yi, Lan-Fen; Wen, Hong-Xia; Qiu, Mei; Cao, Xiao-Xiao

    2017-12-01

    To investigate the cardiac autonomic nerve function in girls with idiopathic central precocious puberty (ICPP). A total of 66 girls with ICPP were enrolled, among whom 36 were obese and 30 were not obese. A total of 68 age-matched healthy girls (normal controls) and 51 girls with simple obesity were enrolled as controls. All the subjects underwent 24-hour ambulatory electrocardiography, and deceleration capacity of heart rate (DC), acceleration capacity of heart rate (AC), and heart rate variability (HRV), and body mass index (BMI) were compared between groups. Compared with the normal control group, the ICPP group had significantly lower DC, standard deviation of normal-to-normal R-R intervals (SDNN), standard deviation of the average normal-to-normal intervals (SDANN), root mean square of successive differences (RMSSD), and high-frequency power (HF) and significantly higher AC and BMI. The ICPP group had significantly lower RMSSD and BMI than the simple obesity group (Pobesity, those with obesity had significantly lower DC, RMSSD, and HF and significantly higher AC and BMI (Pobesity, mainly presenting with reduced vagal tone.

  16. Improved Anode for a Direct Methanol Fuel Cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdez, Thomas; Narayanan, Sekharipuram

    2005-01-01

    A modified chemical composition has been devised to improve the performance of the anode of a direct methanol fuel cell. The main feature of the modified composition is the incorporation of hydrous ruthenium oxide into the anode structure. This modification can reduce the internal electrical resistance of the cell and increase the degree of utilization of the anode catalyst. As a result, a higher anode current density can be sustained with a smaller amount of anode catalyst. These improvements can translate into a smaller fuel-cell system and higher efficiency of conversion. Some background information is helpful for understanding the benefit afforded by the addition of hydrous ruthenium oxide. The anode of a direct methanol fuel cell sustains the electro-oxidation of methanol to carbon dioxide in the reaction CH3OH + H2O--->CO2 + 6H(+) + 6e(-). An electrocatalyst is needed to enable this reaction to occur. The catalyst that offers the highest activity is an alloy of approximately equal numbers of atoms of the noble metals platinum and ruthenium. The anode is made of a composite material that includes high-surface-area Pt/Ru alloy particles and a proton-conducting ionomeric material. This composite is usually deposited onto a polymer-electrolyte (proton-conducting) membrane and onto an anode gas-diffusion/current-collector sheet that is subsequently bonded to the proton-conducting membrane by hot pressing. Heretofore, the areal density of noble-metal catalyst typically needed for high performance has been about 8 mg/cm2. However, not all of the catalyst has been utilized in the catalyzed electro-oxidation reaction. Increasing the degree of utilization of the catalyst would make it possible to improve the performance of the cell for a given catalyst loading and/or reduce the catalyst loading (thereby reducing the cost of the cell). The use of carbon and possibly other electronic conductors in the catalyst layer has been proposed for increasing the utilization of the

  17. Ultrasonic radiation to enable improvement of direct methanol fuel cell.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Chaoqun; Wu, Jiang; Luo, Hao; Wang, Sanwu; Chen, Tao

    2016-03-01

    To improve DMFC (direct methanol fuel cell) performance, a new method using ultrasonic radiation is proposed and a novel DMFC structure is designed and fabricated in the present paper. Three ultrasonic transducers (piezoelectric transducer, PZT) are integrated in the flow field plate to form the ultrasonic field in the liquid fuel. Ultrasonic frequency, acoustic power, and methanol concentration have been considered as variables in the experiments. With the help of ultrasonic radiation, the maximum output power and limiting current of cell can be independently increased by 30.73% and 40.54%, respectively. The best performance of DMFC is obtained at the condition of ultrasonic radiation (30 kHz and 4 W) fed with 2M methanol solution, because both its limiting current and output power reach their maximum value simultaneously (222 mA and 33.6 mW, respectively) under this condition. These results conclude that ultrasonic can be an alternative choice for improving the cell performance, and can facilitate a guideline for the optimization of DMFC. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Berkeley Lab Sheds Light on Improving Solar Cell Efficiency

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    2007-01-01

    Typical manufacturing methods produce solar cells with an efficiency of 12-15%; and 14% efficiency is the bare minimum for achieving a profit. In work performed at the Ernest Orlando Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley, CA, 5 10-486-577 1)--a US Department of Energy national laboratory that conducts unclassified scientific research and is managed by the University of California--scientist Scott McHugo has obtained keen insights into the impaired performance of solar cells manufactured from polycrystalline silicon. The solar cell market is potentially vast, according to Berkeley Lab. Lightweight solar panels are highly beneficial for providing electrical power to remote locations in developing nations, since there is no need to build transmission lines or truck-in generator fuel. Moreover, industrial nations confronted with diminishing resources have active programs aimed at producing improved, less expensive solar cells. 'In a solar cell, there is a junction between p-type silicon and an n-type layer, such as diffused-in phosphorous', explained McHugo, who is now with Berkeley Lab's Accelerator and Fusion Research Division. 'When sunlight is absorbed, it frees electrons, which start migrating in a random-walk fashion toward that junction. If the electrons make it to the junction; they contribute to the cell's output of electric current. Often, however, before they reach the junction, they recombine at specific sites in the crystal' (and, therefore, cannot contribute to current output). McHugo scrutinized a map of a silicon wafer in which sites of high recombination appeared as dark regions. Previously, researchers had shown that such phenomena occurred not primarily at grain boundaries in the polycrystalline material, as might be expected, but more often at dislocations in the crystal. However, the dislocations themselves were not the problem. Using a unique heat treatment technique, McHugo performed electrical measurements to investigate the material

  19. Mesenchymal stem cell injections improve symptoms of knee osteoarthritis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koh, Yong-Gon; Jo, Seung-Bae; Kwon, Oh-Ryong; Suh, Dong-Suk; Lee, Seung-Woo; Park, Sung-Ho; Choi, Yun-Jin

    2013-04-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the clinical and imaging results of patients who received intra-articular injections of autologous mesenchymal stem cells for the treatment of knee osteoarthritis. The study group comprised 18 patients (6 men and 12 women), among whom the mean age was 54.6 years (range, 41 to 69 years). In each patient the adipose synovium was harvested from the inner side of the infrapatellar fat pad by skin incision extension at the arthroscopic lateral portal site after the patient underwent arthroscopic debridement. After stem cells were isolated, a mean of 1.18 × 10(6) stem cells (range, 0.3 × 10(6) to 2.7 × 10(6) stem cells) were prepared with approximately 3.0 mL of platelet-rich plasma (with a mean of 1.28 × 10(6) platelets per microliter) and injected into the selected knees of patients. Clinical outcome was evaluated with the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index, the Lysholm score, and the visual analog scale (VAS) for grading knee pain. We also compared magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) data collected both preoperatively and at the final follow-up. Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index scores decreased significantly (P stem cells injected. The results of our study are encouraging and show that intra-articular injection of infrapatellar fat pad-derived mesenchymal stem cells is effective for reducing pain and improving knee function in patients being treated for knee osteoarthritis. Level IV, therapeutic case series. Copyright © 2013 Arthroscopy Association of North America. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Improved fullerene nanofiber electrodes used in direct methanol fuel cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Q.; Zhang, Y.; Miyazawa, K.; Kato, R.; Hotta, K.; Wakahara, T.

    2009-04-01

    Platinum supported on fullerene nanofibers as possible electrodes for direct methanol fuel cells (DMFC) were studied. Fullerene nanofiber with 20 wt% Pt loading was mixed with 5 wt% Nafion solution. The mixture paste was coated on Nafion 117 membrane and sandwiched with silicon plates. To increase the surface reaction area of catalyst, nanoimprint was used to fabricate micro-patterns in the Nafion proton exchange membrane. Nanoimprint pattern consisted of dots of 500 nm-in-diameter, 140 nm-in-depth and 1 μm-in-spacing. The nanoimprint of the treated proton exchange membrane (PEM) was carried out in a desktop thermal nanoimprint system (NI273, Nano Craft Tech. Corp., Japan) at the optimized conditions of 130 °C and pressure of 3 MPa for 6 min. Then the Pt-coated PEM was sandwiched with micro-channelled silicon plates to form a micro-DMFC. With passively feeding of 1 M methanol solution and air at room temperature, the as-prepared cell had the open circuit voltage of 0.34 V and the maximum power density of 0.30 mW/cm2. Compared with a fresh cell, the results shows that nanofibers used in nanoimprinted PEM have an improvement on the performance of micro fuel cells.

  1. Improved Accelerated Stress Tests Based on Fuel Cell Vehicle Data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Patterson, Timothy [Research Engineer; Motupally, Sathya [Research Engineer

    2012-06-01

    UTC will led a top-tier team of industry and national laboratory participants to update and improve DOE’s Accelerated Stress Tests (AST’s) for hydrogen fuel cells. This in-depth investigation will focused on critical fuel cell components (e.g. membrane electrode assemblies - MEA) whose durability represented barriers for widespread commercialization of hydrogen fuel cell technology. UTC had access to MEA materials that had accrued significant load time under real-world conditions in PureMotion® 120 power plant used in transit buses. These materials are referred to as end-of-life (EOL) components in the rest of this document. Advanced characterization techniques were used to evaluate degradation mode progress using these critical cell components extracted from both bus power plants and corresponding materials tested using the DOE AST’s. These techniques were applied to samples at beginning-of-life (BOL) to serve as a baseline. These comparisons advised the progress of the various failure modes that these critical components were subjected to, such as membrane degradation, catalyst support corrosion, platinum group metal dissolution, and others. Gaps in the existing ASTs predicted the degradation observed in the field in terms of these modes were outlined. Using the gaps, new AST’s were recommended and tested to better reflect the degradation modes seen in field operation. Also, BOL components were degraded in a test vehicle at UTC designed to accelerate the bus field operation.

  2. Improved CMX solar cell coverglasses and optical solar reflectors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whalley, A. M.; Jones, D. P.; Dollery, A. A.; Murphy, N.; Porter, D. A.

    Recent development programs have demonstrated that considerable improvements in optical and thermooptical performance as well as mechanical properties of CMX solar cell coverglasses and optical solar reflectors (OSRs) can be achieved. Optical coatings can increase infrared emittance by 4 percent and decrease solar absorptance by 50 percent. Chemical treatments can be used to increase glass strength to four times its untreated value or to provide integral antireflection layers which reduce reflection to 0.5 percent per surface. Automated test equipment for proving the strength of each coverglass and mirror has been designed and manufactured.

  3. Improved performance design of gallium arsenide solar cells for space

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parekh, R. H.; Barnett, A. M.

    1984-01-01

    An improved design, shallow junction heteroface, n-p, gallium arsenide solar cell for space applications is reported, with a predicted AM0 efficiency in the 21.9 to 23.0 percent range. The optimized n-p structure, while slightly more efficient, has the added advantage of being less susceptible to radiation-induced degradation by virtue of this thin top junction layer. Detailed spectral response curves and an analysis of the loss mechanisms are reported. The details of the design are readily measurable. The optimized designs were reached by quantifying the dominant loss mechanisms and then minimizing them by using computer simulations.

  4. Culturing bone marrow cells with dexamethasone and ascorbic acid improves osteogenic cell sheet structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akahane, M; Shimizu, T; Kira, T; Onishi, T; Uchihara, Y; Imamura, T; Tanaka, Y

    2016-11-01

    To assess the structure and extracellular matrix molecule expression of osteogenic cell sheets created via culture in medium with both dexamethasone (Dex) and ascorbic acid phosphate (AscP) compared either Dex or AscP alone. Osteogenic cell sheets were prepared by culturing rat bone marrow stromal cells in a minimal essential medium (MEM), MEM with AscP, MEM with Dex, and MEM with Dex and AscP (Dex/AscP). The cell number and messenger (m)RNA expression were assessed in vitro, and the appearance of the cell sheets was observed after mechanical retrieval using a scraper. β-tricalcium phosphate (β-TCP) was then wrapped with the cell sheets from the four different groups and subcutaneously implanted into rats. After mechanical retrieval, the osteogenic cell sheets from the MEM, MEM with AscP, and MEM with Dex groups appeared to be fragmented or incomplete structures. The cell sheets cultured with Dex/AscP remained intact after mechanical retrieval, without any identifiable tears. Culture with Dex/AscP increased the mRNA and protein expression of extracellular matrix proteins and cell number compared with those of the other three groups. More bridging bone formation was observed after transplantation of the β-TCP scaffold wrapped with cell sheets cultured with Dex/AscP, than in the other groups. These results suggest that culture with Dex/AscP improves the mechanical integrity of the osteogenic cell sheets, allowing retrieval of the confluent cells in a single cell sheet structure. This method may be beneficial when applied in cases of difficult tissue reconstruction, such as nonunion, bone defects, and osteonecrosis.Cite this article: M. Akahane, T. Shimizu, T. Kira, T. Onishi, Y. Uchihara, T. Imamura, Y. Tanaka. Culturing bone marrow cells with dexamethasone and ascorbic acid improves osteogenic cell sheet structure. Bone Joint Res 2016;5:569-576. DOI: 10.1302/2046-3758.511.BJR-2016-0013.R1. © 2016 Akahane et al.

  5. Cell phone-based health education messaging improves health literacy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuang, Runsen; Xiang, Yueying; Han, Tieguang; Yang, Guo-An; Zhang, Yuan

    2016-03-01

    The ubiquity of cell phones, which allow for short message service (SMS), provides new and innovative opportunities for disease prevention and health education. To explore the use of cell phone-based health education SMS to improve the health literacy of community residents in China. A multi-stage random sampling method was used to select representative study communities and participants ≥ 18 years old. Intervention participants were sent health education SMSs once a week for 1 year and controls were sent conventional, basic health education measures. Health literacy levels of the residents before and after the intervention were evaluated between intervention and control groups. Public health literacy scores increased 1.5 points, from 61.8 to 63.3, after SMS intervention for 1 year (P<0.01); the increase was greater for males than females (2.01 vs. 1.03; P<0.01) and for Shenzhen local residents than non-permanent residents (2.56 vs. 1.14; P<0.01). The frequency of high health literacy scores was greater for the intervention than control group (22.03% to 30.93% vs. 22.07% to 20.82%). With health literacy as a cost-effective index, the cost-effectiveness per intervention was 0.54. SMS may be a useful tool for improving health literacy.

  6. Maternal diet influences offspring feeding behavior and fearfulness in the precocial chicken.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aigueperse, Nadège; Calandreau, Ludovic; Bertin, Aline

    2013-01-01

    In chicken, oils in the maternal diet confer a specific scent to the yolk. Embryos are known to perceive and memorize chemosensory signals of the surrounding environment; however, the potential impact of the maternal diet has not previously been investigated. In the present study, we hypothesized that chicken embryos memorize the chemical signals of the maternal diet and that this perceptual learning may orient subsequent feeding behavior of the hatchlings. Laying hens were fed standard food enriched with 2% menhaden oil (MH group) or 2% soybean oil (controls). The scent of menhaden was significantly more detected in MH egg yolks than in control yolks by a human panel. We analyzed the development and behavior of offspring towards different types of food, bearing or not bearing the menhaden scent. When chicks were exposed to a 3-min choice test between the familiar food bearing the menhaden scent and the familiar food without menhaden, no effect of treatment was observed. In a 3-min choice test with unfamiliar food (mashed cereals) MH chicks showed a clear positive orientation toward the unfamiliar food bearing the menhaden scent. By contrast, control chicks showed a preference for the non-odorized unfamiliar food. MH chicks expressed higher emotional reactivity level than control chicks as expressed by food neophobia and longer immobility in a restraint test. Chicks exposed in ovo to menhaden oil via the maternal diet preferentially oriented their feeding behavior towards food containing menhaden oil, but only when the food was unfamiliar. We propose that oil in the maternal diet engenders maternal effects and contributes to the development of behavioral phenotype in the offspring. In ovo chemosensory learning may have evolved to prepare precocial offspring for their environment. This suggests a common principle of embryonic chemosensory learning across vertebrate taxa.

  7. The effects of swimming exercise and dissolved oxygen on growth performance, fin condition and precocious maturation of early-rearing Atlantic salmon Salmo salar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waldrop, Thomas; Summerfelt, Steven T.; Mazik, Patricia M.; Good, Christopher

    2018-01-01

    Swimming exercise, typically measured in body-lengths per second (BL/s), and dissolved oxygen (DO), are important environmental variables in fish culture. While there is an obvious physiological association between these two parameters, their interaction has not been adequately studied in Atlantic salmon Salmo salar. Because exercise and DO are variables that can be easily manipulated in modern aquaculture systems, we sought to assess the impact of these parameters, alone and in combination, on the performance, health and welfare of juvenile Atlantic salmon. In our study, Atlantic salmon fry were stocked into 12 circular 0.5 m3 tanks in a flow-through system and exposed to either high (1.5–2 BL/s) or low (exercise and DO concentration on growth, feed conversion, survival and fin condition. By study's end, both increased swimming speed and higher DO were independently associated with a statistically significant increase in growth performance (p exercise and dissolved oxygen at saturation during Atlantic salmon early rearing can result in improved growth performance and a lower incidence of precocious parr.

  8. Cell Line Data Base: structure and recent improvements towards molecular authentication of human cell lines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romano, Paolo; Manniello, Assunta; Aresu, Ottavia; Armento, Massimiliano; Cesaro, Michela; Parodi, Barbara

    2009-01-01

    The Cell Line Data Base (CLDB) is a well-known reference information source on human and animal cell lines including information on more than 6000 cell lines. Main biological features are coded according to controlled vocabularies derived from international lists and taxonomies. HyperCLDB (http://bioinformatics.istge.it/hypercldb/) is a hypertext version of CLDB that improves data accessibility by also allowing information retrieval through web spiders. Access to HyperCLDB is provided through indexes of biological characteristics and navigation in the hypertext is granted by many internal links. HyperCLDB also includes links to external resources. Recently, an interest was raised for a reference nomenclature for cell lines and CLDB was seen as an authoritative system. Furthermore, to overcome the cell line misidentification problem, molecular authentication methods, such as fingerprinting, single-locus short tandem repeat (STR) profile and single nucleotide polymorphisms validation, were proposed. Since this data is distributed, a reference portal on authentication of human cell lines is needed. We present here the architecture and contents of CLDB, its recent enhancements and perspectives. We also present a new related database, the Cell Line Integrated Molecular Authentication (CLIMA) database (http://bioinformatics.istge.it/clima/), that allows to link authentication data to actual cell lines.

  9. Spring Chinook Salmon Interactions Indices and Residual/Precocial Monitoring in the Upper Yakima Basin, Annual Report 1998

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    James, Brenda B.; Pearsons, Todd N.; McMichael, Geoffrey A.

    1999-01-01

    Select ecological interactions and spring chinook salmon residual/precocial abundance were monitored in 1998 as part of the Yakima/Klickitat Fisheries Project's supplementation monitoring program. Monitoring these variables is part of an effort to help evaluate the factors that contribute to, or limit supplementation success. The ecological interactions that were monitored were prey consumption, competition for food, and competition for space. The abundance of spring chinook salmon life-history forms that have the potential to be influenced by supplementation and that have important ecological and genetic roles were monitored (residuals and precocials). Residual spring chinook salmon do not migrate to the ocean during the normal emigration period and continue to rear in freshwater. Precocials are those salmon that precocially mature in freshwater. The purpose of sampling during 1998 was to collect baseline data one year prior to the release of hatchery spring chinook salmon which occurred during the spring of 1999. All sampling that the authors report on here was conducted in upper Yakima River during summer and fall 1998. The stomach fullness of juvenile spring chinook salmon during the summer and fall averaged 12%. The food competition index suggested that mountain whitefish (0.59), rainbow trout (0.55), and redside shiner (0.55) were competing for food with spring chinook salmon. The space competition index suggested that rainbow trout (0.31) and redside shiner (0.39) were competing for space with spring chinook salmon but mountain whitefish (0.05) were not. Age-0 spring chinook salmon selected a fairly narrow range of microhabitat parameters in the summer and fall relative to what was available. Mean focal depths and velocities for age 0 spring chinook salmon during the summer were 0.5 m ± 0.2 m and 0.26 m/s ± 0.19 m/s, and during the fall 0.5 m ± 0.2 m and 0.24 m/s ± 0.18 m/s. Among potential competitors, age 1+ rainbow trout exhibited the greatest degree

  10. RNAi-mediated knockdown of SPOOK reduces ecdysteroid titers and causes precocious metamorphosis in the desert locust Schistocerca gregaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugahara, Ryohei; Tanaka, Seiji; Shiotsuki, Takahiro

    2017-09-01

    The Halloween gene SPOOK (SPO) is involved in the production of the active metabolite of ecdysteroid, 20-hydroxyecdysone (20E), in insects. A previous study showed that RNAi-mediated knockdown of SPO in Schistocerca gregaria last instar nymphs markedly reduced the hemolymph 20E titer, but did not affect metamorphosis. In the present study, the effects of SPO interference on development were re-examined in this locust. Injections of SPO double-stranded RNA (dsSPO) into nymphs at mid and late instars significantly delayed nymphal development and interfered with molting. The 20E levels of dsSPO-treated nymphs were generally low, with a delayed, small peak, suggesting that disturbance of the 20E levels caused the above developmental abnormalities. A small proportion of the dsSPO-injected nymphs metamorphosed precociously, producing adults and adultoids. Precocious adults were characterized by small body size, short wings with abbreviated venation, and normal reproductive activity. Fourth instar nymphs that precociously metamorphosed at the following instar exhibited temporal expression patterns of ecdysone-induced protein 93F and the juvenile hormone (JH) early-inducible gene Krüppel homolog 1 similar to those observed at the last instar in normal nymphs. Adultoids displayed mating behavior and adultoid females developed eggs, but never laid eggs. JH injection around the expected time of the 20E peak in the dsSPO-injected nymphs completely inhibited the appearance of adultoids, suggesting that appearance of adultoids might be due to a reduced titer of JH rather than of 20E. These results suggest that SPO plays an important role in controlling morphogenesis, metamorphosis, and reproduction in S. gregaria. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Paraneoplastic precocious puberty and excessively rapid somatic growth associated with pediatric malignant hepatic tumor: 1 report of 2 cases

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Ok Hwa; Bahk, Yong Whee

    1990-01-01

    Sexual precocity in a 28-months-old boy and markedly accelerated skeletal growth with large body in a 5 years and 5 months-old-girl are reported. The former resulted from human chorionic gonadotropin-producing hepatoblastoma and the latter from cerebral gigantism associated with hepatoma. These two different disorders are discussed on the common basis of rare association of malignant hepatic tumors with precocious sexual and / or somatic growth. The clinical manifestations, chemical abnormalities, and the radiologic findings are presented with a brief review of the literature

  12. Paraneoplastic precocious puberty and excessively rapid somatic growth associated with pediatric malignant hepatic tumor: 1 report of 2 cases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Ok Hwa; Bahk, Yong Whee [Cathalic University College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    1990-04-15

    Sexual precocity in a 28-months-old boy and markedly accelerated skeletal growth with large body in a 5 years and 5 months-old-girl are reported. The former resulted from human chorionic gonadotropin-producing hepatoblastoma and the latter from cerebral gigantism associated with hepatoma. These two different disorders are discussed on the common basis of rare association of malignant hepatic tumors with precocious sexual and / or somatic growth. The clinical manifestations, chemical abnormalities, and the radiologic findings are presented with a brief review of the literature.

  13. Improved survival of patients with nasopharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yamashita, S.; Kondo, M.; Inuyama, Y.; Hashimoto, S.

    1986-03-01

    One hundred and one patients with nasopharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (NPC) were treated with irradiation. The UICC TNM staging system (1978) was used: 6 patients were T1N0, 10 T2N0, 5 T3N0, 13 T4N0, 11 T1N+, 18 T2N+, 19 T3N+ and 19 T4N+. Since 1978, 34 patients were examined with computed tomography (CT) at first presentation. Fourteen (41%) of the 34 tumors were upstaged based on the CT findings alone. The technique of radiation therapy was markedly changed around 1978. The fields to the primary site and neck were enlarged. Two-year relapse-free survival was significantly better for the post-CT era than pre-CT era. This was mainly because of improved local-recurrence-free survival, and cervical-relapse-free survival. Improved local-recurrence-free survival, however, was appreciated in only T3 + T4 patients; there was no difference in T1 + T2 patients. It is suggested that merely enlarging radiation fields or increasing radiation doses could not be curative for some subpopulations. In order to increase local control rates further, we have started to use intracavitary irradiation with an after-loading technique as a boost. Preliminary results are encouraging.

  14. Quantify and improve PEM fuel cell durability. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grahl-Madsen, L.; Odgaard, M.; Munksgaard Nielsen, R. (IRD Fuel Cell A/S, Svendborg (Denmark)); Li, Q.; Jensen, Jens Oluf (Technical Univ. of Denmark, Dept. of Chemistry, Kgs. Lyngby (Denmark)); Andersen, Shuang Ma; Speder, J.; Skou, E. (Syddansk Univ. (SDU), Odense (Denmark))

    2010-07-01

    approx 4,000 hours of operation correspond to a loss of catalytic active area of 58% for the anode and 69% for the cathode respectively, and the MEA can be expected to perform equivalent to MEAs with less than half the catalyst loating. DMFC durability tests were carried out on both Nafion and Hydrocarbon membrane based MEAs using different electrode designs. Several single DMFC cells and stacks have been tested up to 3,000 hours. The degradation rates found for both single cells and stacks were in the range between 10-90 muV/hours per cell, depending on the MEA configuration. Certain performance losses incurred by the cell during the steady-state operation were recovered, fully or in part, after the regular OCV hold. Regeneration of the Pt-catalyst particles include electro-reduction of the surface PtO that gradually forms over time, surface electro-oxidation of adsorbed poisons (namely CO formed from methanol crossover), and chemical reduction of PtO and/or PtOH via crossover methanol. The HT PEM FC results indicate that a degradation rate of approx 5 muV/h for HT PEM FC can be expected under continuous operation with hydrogen and air at 150-160 C, corresponding to a lifetime of 12,000 hours before 10% performance loss. This lifetime is somewhat shorter than aimed at in the national Danish HT PEM Road map (2009: 20,000 h), but it is in this context important to remember the limited knowledge on HT PEM lifetime at the time of the roadmap definition in 2008. The accelerated durability test with potential cycling showed significant catalyst degradation, primarily due to the corrosion of carbon supports, which triggers the platinum sintering/agglomeration. Modified catalyst supports in form of graphite or carbon nanotubes improve the catalyst and therefore the PBI cell durability. (LN)

  15. Trabalho precoce: realidade social e desafio de política pública Precocious labor: a social reality and a challenge to public policy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonia Rocha

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available This article presents the basic characteristics of precocious labor in Brazil in the nineties. Since the age individuals start working does not seem to be an important determinant of future income, we examined its related aspects, such as school attendance and hard work incidence of. As precocious labor still involves large contingents of children in Brazil under quite different working conditions, it is essential to distinguish the most critical situations so as to support a social policy design targeted at a specific clientele.

  16. The significance of measuring serum IGF1, IGFBP3 and OST for the judgement of abnormal skeletal development and therapeutic monitoring in precocious children

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ji Zhiying; Zhao Ruifang; Lv Xiaomei; Gu Fanlei; Cai Depei

    2004-01-01

    Objective: To study the value of measuring serum insulin-like growth factor I (IGF 1 ), insulin-like growth factor binding protein III (IGFBP 3 ) and osteocalcin (OST) for evaluating acceleration of skeletal growth and skeletal maturity, and its value for therapeutic monitoring in precocious children. Methods: Serum IGF 1 and IGFBP 3 were measured with immunoradiometric assay, serum OST was measured with radioimmunoassay in 117 girls with idiopathic precocious puberty. The girls were grouped according to age, and various parameters collected from them were compared with normal values of matched girls. Furthermore, the girls were grouped according to Tanner's staging (the extent of precocious puberty), the analysis of correlativity between various parameters to the extent of precocious puberty was performed, and the analysis of correlativity between the level of serum IGF 1 and advancing of bone age was performed. Various parameters were measured once more in 38 of the study girls after six months of the treatment, and the parameters were compared with that before treatment. Results: 1) The levels of serum IGF 1 and OST in the girls with precocious puberty were elevated obviously than that in matched normal girls, but the level of serum IGFBP 3 was reduced obviously than that in matched normal girls. It was demonstrated that typical elevation of serum IGF 1 and OST occurred in normal adolescence appeared ahead of time in the girls with precocious puberty. 2) The extent of precocious puberty correlated closely with the level of serum IGF 1 (r=0.489, P 1 (r=0.411, P 1 was. 3) After the treatment, the concentration of serum IGF 1 reduced from (455.52 ± 119.45) μg/L to (284.55 ± 99.52) μg/L (P 1 and OST reduced obviously. Conclusions: Serum IGF 1 and OST could act as quantitative parameters for evaluating acceleration of skeletal growth and advancing of skeletal maturity in girls with idiopathic true precocious puberty. It could act as a parameter for therapeutic

  17. Elevated hypothalamic aromatization at the onset of precocious puberty in transgenic female mice hypersecreting human chorionic gonadotropin: effect of androgens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez, Betina; Ratner, Laura D; Scerbo, María J; Di Giorgio, Noelia P; Poutanen, Matti; Huhtaniemi, Ilpo T; Calandra, Ricardo S; Lux-Lantos, Victoria A R; Cambiasso, María J; Rulli, Susana B

    2014-06-05

    Transgenic female mice overexpressing the α- and β- subunits of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCGαβ+) exhibited precocious puberty, as evidenced by early vaginal opening. Chronically elevated hCG in 21-day-old hCGαβ+ females stimulated gonadal androgen production, which exerted negative feedback over the endogenous gonadotropin synthesis, and activated the hypothalamic GnRH pulsatility and gene expression. Transgenic females also exhibited elevated hypothalamic aromatization in the preoptic area (POA), which is the sexually-differentiated area that controls the LH surge in adulthood. Ovariectomy at 14 days of age was unable to rescue this phenotype. However, the blockade of androgen action by flutamide from postnatal day 6 onwards reduced the aromatase levels in the POA of hCGαβ+ females. Our results suggest that early exposure of females to androgen action during a critical period between postnatal days 6-14 induces sex-specific organizational changes of the brain, which affect the aromatase expression in the POA at the onset of precocious puberty. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. WT1-specific T cell receptor gene therapy: improving TCR function in transduced T cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stauss, Hans J; Thomas, Sharyn; Cesco-Gaspere, Michela; Hart, Daniel P; Xue, Shao-An; Holler, Angelika; King, Judy; Wright, Graham; Perro, Mario; Pospori, Constantina; Morris, Emma

    2008-01-01

    Adoptive transfer of antigen-specific T lymphocytes is an attractive form of immunotherapy for haematological malignancies and cancer. The difficulty of isolating antigen-specific T lymphocytes for individual patients limits the more widespread use of adoptive T cell therapy. The demonstration that cloned T cell receptor (TCR) genes can be used to produce T lymphocyte populations of desired specificity offers new opportunities for antigen-specific T cell therapy. The first trial in humans demonstrated that TCR gene-modified T cells persisted for an extended time period and reduced tumor burden in some patients. The WT1 protein is an attractive target for immunotherapy of leukemia and solid cancer since elevated expression has been demonstrated in AML, CML, MDS and in breast, colon and ovarian cancer. In the past, we have isolated high avidity CTL specific for a WT1-derived peptide presented by HLA-A2 and cloned the TCR alpha and beta genes of a WT1-specific CTL line. The genes were inserted into retroviral vectors for transduction of human peripheral blood T lymphocytes of leukemia patients and normal donors. The treatment of leukemia-bearing NOD/SCID mice with T cells transduced with the WT1-specific TCR eliminated leukemia cells in the bone marrow of most mice, while treatment with T cells transduced with a TCR of irrelevant specificity did not diminish the leukemia burden. In order to improve the safety and efficacy of TCR gene therapy, we have developed lentiviral TCR gene transfer. In addition, we employed strategies to enhance TCR expression while avoiding TCR mis-pairing. It may be possible to generate dominant TCR constructs that can suppress the expression of the endogenous TCR on the surface of transduced T cells. The development of new TCR gene constructs holds great promise for the safe and effective delivery of TCR gene therapy for the treatment of malignancies.

  19. Improved transfection of HUVEC and MEF cells using DNA ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Cells such as mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) and human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) used in stem cell research and endothelial cell physiology and pathology studies are difficult to transfect using 'standard' nonviral transfection methods. We have developed a novel gene delivery technique, which uses ...

  20. Building on Dendritic Cell Subsets to Improve Cancer Vaccines

    OpenAIRE

    Palucka, Karolina; Ueno, Hideki; Zurawski, Gerard; Fay, Joseph; Banchereau, Jacques

    2010-01-01

    T cells can reject established tumors when adoptively transferred into patients, thereby demonstrating that the immune system can be harnessed for cancer therapy. However, such passive immunotherapy is unlikely to maintain memory T cells that might control tumor outgrowth on the long term. Active immunotherapy with vaccines has the potential to induce tumor-specific effector and memory T cells. Vaccines act through dendritic cells (DCs) which induce, regulate and maintain T cell immunity. Cli...

  1. Method of improving fuel cell performance by removing at least one metal oxide contaminant from a fuel cell electrode

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Yu Seung [Los Alamos, NM; Choi, Jong-Ho [Los Alamos, NM; Zelenay, Piotr [Los Alamos, NM

    2009-08-18

    A method of removing contaminants from a fuel cell catalyst electrode. The method includes providing a getter electrode and a fuel cell catalyst electrode having at least one contaminant to a bath and applying a voltage sufficient to drive the contaminant from the fuel cell catalyst electrode to the getter electrode. Methods of removing contaminants from a membrane electrode assembly of a fuel cell and of improving performance of a fuel cell are also provided.

  2. An improved method for staining cell colonies in clonogenic assays

    OpenAIRE

    Guda, Kishore; Natale, Leanna; Markowitz, Sanford D.

    2007-01-01

    Clonogenic assay is a widely used experimental approach to test for the effects of drugs/genes on the growth and proliferative characteristics of cells in vitro. Accurate quantitation of treatment effects in clonogeneic assays depends on the ability to visualize and count cell colonies precisely. We report a novel method (referred as ETeB) for staining cell colonies grown on plastic and specially coated substrates like collagen. Using colon cancer cell lines grown on plastic and collagen, we ...

  3. An improved ontological representation of dendritic cells as a paradigm for all cell types

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mungall Chris

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Recent increases in the volume and diversity of life science data and information and an increasing emphasis on data sharing and interoperability have resulted in the creation of a large number of biological ontologies, including the Cell Ontology (CL, designed to provide a standardized representation of cell types for data annotation. Ontologies have been shown to have significant benefits for computational analyses of large data sets and for automated reasoning applications, leading to organized attempts to improve the structure and formal rigor of ontologies to better support computation. Currently, the CL employs multiple is_a relations, defining cell types in terms of histological, functional, and lineage properties, and the majority of definitions are written with sufficient generality to hold across multiple species. This approach limits the CL's utility for computation and for cross-species data integration. Results To enhance the CL's utility for computational analyses, we developed a method for the ontological representation of cells and applied this method to develop a dendritic cell ontology (DC-CL. DC-CL subtypes are delineated on the basis of surface protein expression, systematically including both species-general and species-specific types and optimizing DC-CL for the analysis of flow cytometry data. We avoid multiple uses of is_a by linking DC-CL terms to terms in other ontologies via additional, formally defined relations such as has_function. Conclusion This approach brings benefits in the form of increased accuracy, support for reasoning, and interoperability with other ontology resources. Accordingly, we propose our method as a general strategy for the ontological representation of cells. DC-CL is available from http://www.obofoundry.org.

  4. Minimal RED Cell Pairs Markedly Improve Electrode Kinetics and Power Production in Microbial Reverse Electrodialysis Cells

    KAUST Repository

    Cusick, Roland D.

    2013-12-17

    Power production from microbial reverse electrodialysis cell (MRC) electrodes is substantially improved compared to microbial fuel cells (MFCs) by using ammonium bicarbonate (AmB) solutions in multiple RED cell pair stacks and the cathode chamber. Reducing the number of RED membranes pairs while maintaining enhanced electrode performance could help to reduce capital costs. We show here that using only a single RED cell pair (CP), created by operating the cathode in concentrated AmB, dramatically increased power production normalized to cathode area from both acetate (Acetate: from 0.9 to 3.1 W/m 2-cat) and wastewater (WW: 0.3 to 1.7 W/m2), by reducing solution and charge transfer resistances at the cathode. A second RED cell pair increased RED stack potential and reduced anode charge transfer resistance, further increasing power production (Acetate: 4.2 W/m2; WW: 1.9 W/m2). By maintaining near optimal electrode power production with fewer membranes, power densities normalized to total membrane area for the 1-CP (Acetate: 3.1 W/m2-mem; WW: 1.7 W/m2) and 2-CP (Acetate: 1.3 W/m2-mem; WW: 0.6 W/m2) reactors were much higher than previous MRCs (0.3-0.5 W/m2-mem with acetate). While operating at peak power, the rate of wastewater COD removal, normalized to reactor volume, was 30-50 times higher in 1-CP and 2-CP MRCs than that in a single chamber MFC. These findings show that even a single cell pair AmB RED stack can significantly enhance electrical power production and wastewater treatment. © 2013 American Chemical Society.

  5. Fuel cell elements with improved water handling capacity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kindler, Andrew (Inventor); Lee, Albany (Inventor)

    2001-01-01

    New fuel cell components for use in liquid feed fuel cell systems are provided. The components include biplates and endplates, having a hydrophilic surface and allow high efficiency operation. Conductive elements and a wicking device also form a part of the fuel cell components of the invention.

  6. Longitudinal follow-up of bone density and body composition in children with precocious or early puberty before, during and after cessation of GnRH agonist therapy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    I.M. van der Sluis (Inge); A.M. Boot (Annemieke); E.P. Krenning (Eric); S.L.S. Drop (Stenvert); S.M.P.F. de Muinck Keizer-Schrama (Sabine)

    2002-01-01

    textabstractWe studied bone mineral density (BMD), bone metabolism, and body composition in 47 children with central precocious puberty (n = 36) or early puberty (n = 11) before, during, and after cessation of GnRH agonist. Bone density and body composition were measured with dual

  7. Balsamic Vinegar Improves High Fat-Induced Beta Cell Dysfunction via Beta Cell ABCA1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hannah Seok

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available BackgroundThe aim of this study was to investigate the effects of balsamic vinegar on β-cell dysfunction.MethodsIn this study, 28-week-old Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF rats were fed a normal chow diet or a high-fat diet (HFD and were provided with tap water or dilute balsamic vinegar for 4 weeks. Oral glucose tolerance tests and histopathological analyses were performed thereafter.ResultsIn rats fed both the both chow diet and the HFD, the rats given balsamic vinegar showed increased insulin staining in islets compared with tap water administered rats. Balsamic vinegar administration also increased β-cell ATP-binding cassette transporter subfamily A member 1 (ABCA1 expression in islets and decreased cholesterol levels.ConclusionThese findings provide the first evidence for an anti-diabetic effect of balsamic vinegar through improvement of β-cell function via increasing β-cell ABCA1 expression.

  8. Beta-glucanase productivity improvement via cell immobilization of recombinant Escherichia coli cells in different matrices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beshay, Usama; El-Enshasy, Hesham; Ismail, I M K; Moawad, Hassan; Abd-El-Ghany, Sawsan

    2011-01-01

    The studies have been performed to analyze the production of beta-glucanase by a recombinant strain of Escherichia coli immobilized in different matrices. Porous sintered glass SIRAN, Ceramic supporting matrices and Broken Pumice stone as well as SIRAN Raschig-rings were examined for the immobilization of whole bacterial cells. The beta-glucanase activity of bacteria immobilized in CeramTec PST 5 (4-5 mm) was very low. CeramTec PST 5 (1.5-2.5 mm) was found to be the best carrier compared to all other matrices regarding glucanase production (630 U/ml) and compared to enzyme activity produced by free cells (500 U/ml). Different doses of matrices were applied (2, 5, 7, 10 g/lask) in the form of "matrix weight". Using 2 g/flask of CeramTec PST 5 (1.5-2.5 mm) yielded enzyme activity of 630 U/ml). CeramTec gives highest operational stability of beta-glucanase by repeated batch fermentation to 5 cycles, and activity reached 660 U/ml. Scanning electron microscopy observations showed a high number of vegetative cells that continued growth inside the matrices, indicating that beta-glucanase activity improvement was due to the immobilization of the cells.

  9. Loss of niche-satellite cell interactions in syndecan-3 null mice alters muscle progenitor cell homeostasis improving muscle regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pisconti, Addolorata; Banks, Glen B; Babaeijandaghi, Farshad; Betta, Nicole Dalla; Rossi, Fabio M V; Chamberlain, Jeffrey S; Olwin, Bradley B

    2016-01-01

    The skeletal muscle stem cell niche provides an environment that maintains quiescent satellite cells, required for skeletal muscle homeostasis and regeneration. Syndecan-3, a transmembrane proteoglycan expressed in satellite cells, supports communication with the niche, providing cell interactions and signals to maintain quiescent satellite cells. Syndecan-3 ablation unexpectedly improves regeneration in repeatedly injured muscle and in dystrophic mice, accompanied by the persistence of sublaminar and interstitial, proliferating myoblasts. Additionally, muscle aging is improved in syndecan-3 null mice. Since syndecan-3 null myofiber-associated satellite cells downregulate Pax7 and migrate away from the niche more readily than wild type cells, syxndecan-3 appears to regulate satellite cell homeostasis and satellite cell homing to the niche. Manipulating syndecan-3 provides a promising target for development of therapies to enhance muscle regeneration in muscular dystrophies and in aged muscle.

  10. Boys with precocious or early puberty: incidence of pathological brain magnetic resonance imaging findings and factors related to newly developed brain lesions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keun Hee Choi

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available PurposeBrain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI findings and factors predictive of pathological brain lesions in boys with precocious puberty (PP or early puberty (EP were investigated.MethodsSixty-one boys with PP or EP who had brain MRI performed were included. PP was classified into the central or peripheral type. Brain MRI findings were categorized into group I (pathological brain lesion known to cause puberty; newly diagnosed [group Ia] or previously diagnosed [group Ib]; group II (brain lesion possibly related to puberty; and group III (incidental or normal findings. Medical history, height, weight, hormone test results, and bone age were reviewed.ResultsBrain lesions in groups I and II were detected in 17 of 23 boys (74% with central PP, 9 of 30 boys (30% with EP, and 7 of 8 boys (88% with peripheral PP. All brain lesions in boys with peripheral PP were germ cell tumors (GCT, and 3 lesions developed later during follow-up. Group I showed earlier pubertal onset (P<0.01 and greater bone age advancement (P<0.05 than group III. Group III had lower birth weight and fewer neurological symptoms than "Ia and II" (all P<0.05.ConclusionEarlier onset of puberty, greater bone age advancement, and/or neurological symptoms suggested a greater chance of pathological brain lesions in boys with central PP or EP. All boys with peripheral PP, even those with normal initial MRI findings, should be evaluated for the emergence of GCT during follow-up.

  11. Temporal dynamics of milk composition of the precocial caviomorph Octodon degus (Rodentia: Octodontidae Dinámica temporal de la composición de la leche del caviomorfo precocial Octodon degus (Rodentia: Octodentidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    CLAUDIO VELOSO

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available During lactation, both the nutritional and energetic requirements of suckling change gradually. These changes normally are accompanied by modifications in chemical composition of the milk. We investigated the temporal course of milk composition during lactation in a precocial caviomorph rodent, the "degu" (Octodon degus under laboratory condition. Female degus were kept in laboratory during gestation and lactation and fed with commercial food pellets. Milk was collected at three stages of lactation: early (days 5-8, n = 12, middle (days 15-21, n = 7 and late (days 26-40, n = 6, and analyzed for protein, carbohydrates, lipids, ash, total solids and energy. On average, carbohydrates decreased from 3.1 ± 0.3 % (early to 1.1 ± 0.3 % (late during lactation; lipids, protein, ash, total solids and energy remained about the same. Lipids, the main component of the milk, were 17.3 % and protein remained near 4.4 %. Over lactation, total energy concentration of milk remained near 4.0 kJ mL-1. The maintenance of milk composition during lactation may be related to the initially high energetic and nutritional requirements associated with a precocial reproductive modeDurante la lactancia, tanto los requerimientos energéticos como nutricionales de las crías cambian gradualmente. Estos cambios normalmente van acompañados por modificaciones en la composición química de la leche. Se investigaron los cambios temporales de la composición de la leche durante la lactancia en el roedor caviomorfo precocial "degu" (Octodon degus bajo condiciones de laboratorio. Las hembras de degu fueron mantenidas en el laboratorio durante preñez y lactancia, y fueron alimentadas con alimento comercial de conejo. La leche fue colectada en tres estados de lactancia: temprana (días 5-8, n = 12, media (días 15-21, n = 7 y tardía (días 26-40, n = 6, y analizadas para proteínas, hidratos de carbono, lípidos, ceniza, sólidos totales y energía. En promedio, los hidratos de

  12. Mesenchymal stem cells increase T-regulatory cells and improve healing following trauma and hemorrhagic shock.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gore, Amy V; Bible, Letitia E; Song, Kimberly; Livingston, David H; Mohr, Alicia M; Sifri, Ziad C

    2015-07-01

    Rodent lungs undergo full histologic recovery within 1 week following unilateral lung contusion (LC). However, when LC is followed by hemorrhagic shock (HS), healing is impaired. We hypothesize that the intravenous administration of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in animals undergoing combined LC followed by HS (LCHS) will improve wound healing. Male Sprague-Dawley rats (n = 5-6 per group) were subjected to LCHS with or without the injection of a single intravenous dose of 5 × 10 MSCs following return of shed blood after HS. Rats were sacrificed 7 days following injury. Flow cytometry was used to determine the T-regulatory cell (Treg) population in peripheral blood. Lung histology was graded using a well-established lung injury score (LIS). Components of the LIS include average inflammatory cells per high-power field over 30 fields, interstitial edema, pulmonary edema, and alveolar integrity, with total scores ranging from 0 to 11. Data were analyzed by analysis of variance followed by Tukey's multiple comparison test, expressed as mean (SD). p healing with an LIS unchanged from naive. The addition of HS resulted in a persistently elevated LIS score, whereas the addition of MSCs to LCHS decreased the LIS score back to naive levels. The change in LIS was driven by a significant decrease in edema scores. In rats undergoing LC alone, 10.5% (3.3%) of CD4 cells were Tregs. The addition of HS caused no significant change in Treg population (9.3% [0.7%]), whereas LCHS + MSC significantly increased the population to 18.2% (6.8%) in peripheral blood (p healing following trauma and HS is improved by a single dose of MSCs given immediately after injury. This enhanced healing is associated with an increase in the Treg population and a significant decrease in lung edema score as compared with animals undergoing LCHS. Further study into the role of Tregs in MSC-mediated wound healing is warranted.

  13. Functionalized Graphitic Supports for Improved Fuel Cell Catalyst Stability, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Physical Sciences Inc. (PSI) together with the University of Connecticut (UCONN) proposes to demonstrate the improved fuel cell catalyst support durability offered...

  14. Mesenchymal Stem Cells Improve Healing of Diabetic Foot Ulcer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yue Cao

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs, an ideal cell source for regenerative therapy with no ethical issues, play an important role in diabetic foot ulcer (DFU. Growing evidence has demonstrated that MSCs transplantation can accelerate wound closure, ameliorate clinical parameters, and avoid amputation. In this review, we clarify the mechanism of preclinical studies, as well as safety and efficacy of clinical trials in the treatment of DFU. Bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs, compared with MSCs derived from other tissues, may be a suitable cell type that can provide easy, effective, and cost-efficient transplantation to treat DFU and protect patients from amputation.

  15. Serum inhibin A and inhibin B in central precocious puberty before and during treatment with GnRH agonists

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sehested, A; Andersson, A M; Müller, J

    2000-01-01

    Serum levels of the gonadal hormones inhibin A and inhibin B are undetectable or low in prepubertal girls, and rise during puberty. In girls with central precocious puberty (CPP) the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis is prematurely activated, if the girl is thereafter treated with GnRH agonists...... both gonadotropins and estradiol levels become suppressed. We therefore investigated serum levels of inhibin A and inhibin B in girls with CPP at diagnosis and during treatment in order to test the hypothesis that inhibin secretion would increase and decrease in parallel with the activation...... and suppression of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis. Serum levels of inhibin A and inhibin B were significantly (p 0.0005) elevated in 42 girls at diagnosis of CPP (inhibin A: 7 pg/ml (...

  16. A missense mutation in MKRN3 in a Danish girl with central precocious puberty and her brother with early puberty

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Känsäkoski, Johanna; Raivio, Taneli; Juul, Anders

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Idiopathic central precocious puberty (ICPP) results from the premature reactivation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis leading to development of secondary sexual characteristics prior to 8 y in girls or 9 y in boys. Since the initial discovery of mutations in the maternally...... imprinted MKRN3 gene in 2013, several case reports have described mutations in this gene in ICPP patients from different populations, highlighting the importance of MKRN3 as a regulator of pubertal onset. METHODS: We screened 29 Danish girls with ICPP for mutations in MKRN3. Expression of MKRN3 in human...... hypothalamic complementary DNA (cDNA) was investigated by PCR. RESULTS: One paternally inherited rare variant, c.1034G>A (p.Arg345His), was identified in one girl with ICPP and in her brother with early puberty. The variant is predicted to be deleterious by three different in silico prediction programs...

  17. Serum inhibin A and inhibin B in central precocious puberty before and during treatment with GnRH agonists

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sehested, A; Andersson, A M; Müller, J

    2000-01-01

    both gonadotropins and estradiol levels become suppressed. We therefore investigated serum levels of inhibin A and inhibin B in girls with CPP at diagnosis and during treatment in order to test the hypothesis that inhibin secretion would increase and decrease in parallel with the activation......Serum levels of the gonadal hormones inhibin A and inhibin B are undetectable or low in prepubertal girls, and rise during puberty. In girls with central precocious puberty (CPP) the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis is prematurely activated, if the girl is thereafter treated with GnRH agonists...... and suppression of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis. Serum levels of inhibin A and inhibin B were significantly (p 0.0005) elevated in 42 girls at diagnosis of CPP (inhibin A: 7 pg/ml (...

  18. RNAi-mediated silencing of vitellogenin gene function turns honeybee ( Apis mellifera) workers into extremely precocious foragers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marco Antonio, David Santos; Guidugli-Lazzarini, Karina Rosa; Do Nascimento, Adriana Mendes; Simões, Zilá Luz Paulino; Hartfelder, Klaus

    2008-10-01

    The switch from within-hive activities to foraging behavior is a major transition in the life cycle of a honeybee ( Apis mellifera) worker. A prominent regulatory role in this switch has long been attributed to juvenile hormone (JH), but recent evidence also points to the yolk precursor protein vitellogenin as a major player in behavioral development. In the present study, we injected vitellogenin double-stranded RNA (dsVg) into newly emerged worker bees of Africanized genetic origin and introduced them together with controls into observation hives to record flight behavior. RNA interference-mediated silencing of vitellogenin gene function shifted the onset of long-duration flights (>10 min) to earlier in life (by 3 4 days) when compared with sham and untreated control bees. In fact, dsVg bees were observed conducting such flights extremely precociously, when only 3 days old. Short-duration flights (<10 min), which bees usually perform for orientation and cleaning, were not affected. Additionally, we found that the JH titer in dsVg bees collected after 7 days was not significantly different from the controls. The finding that depletion of the vitellogenin titer can drive young bees to become extremely precocious foragers could imply that vitellogenin is the primary switch signal. At this young age, downregulation of vitellogenin gene activity apparently had little effect on the JH titer. As this unexpected finding stands in contrast with previous results on the vitellogenin/JH interaction at a later age, when bees normally become foragers, we propose a three-step sequence in the constellation of physiological parameters underlying behavioral development.

  19. Factors that predict a positive response on gonadotropin-releasing hormone stimulation test for diagnosing central precocious puberty in girls

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junghwan Suh

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available PurposeThe rapid increase in the incidence of precocious puberty in Korea has clinical and social significance. Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH stimulation test is required to diagnose central precocious puberty (CPP, however this test is expensive and time-consuming. This study aimed to identify factors that can predict a positive response to the GnRH stimulation test.MethodsClinical and laboratory parameters, including basal serum luteinizing hormone (LH, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH, and estradiol (E2, were measured in 540 girls with clinical signs of CPP.ResultsTwo hundred twenty-nine of 540 girls with suspected CPP had a peak serum LH level higher than 5 IU/L (the CPP group. The CPP group had advanced bone age (P<0.001, accelerated yearly growth rate (P<0.001, increased basal levels of LH (P=0.02, FSH (P<0.001, E2 (P=0.001, and insulin-like growth factor-I levels (P<0.001 compared to the non-CPP group. In contrast, body weight (P<0.001 and body mass index (P<0.001 were lower in the CPP group. Although basal LH was significantly elevated in the CPP group compared to the non-CPP group, there was considerable overlap between the 2 groups. Cutoff values of basal LH (0.22 IU/L detected CPP with 87.8% sensitivity and 20.9% specificity.ConclusionNo single parameter can predict a positive response on the GnRH stimulation test with both high sensitivity and specificity. Therefore, multiple factors should be considered in evaluation of sexual precocity when deciding the timing of the GnRH stimulation test.

  20. Graphene for improved femtosecond laser based pluripotent stem cell transfection

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mthunzi, P

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available on graphene coated substrates. First we studied the impact of graphene on Chinese Hamster Ovary (CHO-K1) cell viability and cell cytotoxicity in the absence of laser exposure. These were tested via evaluating the mitochondrial activity through adenosine...

  1. Improved transfection of HUVEC and MEF cells using DNA ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    1nanoTherics Limited, Med IC4, Keele University Science and Business Park, Keele, Staffordshire, ST5 5NL, UK. 2J. Crayton Pruitt Family ... lying the cell culture plate that pulls the complexes onto the surface of the cells (Plank et al. 2003 .... netic arrays play an important role in the internalization of magnetic nanoparticles ...

  2. Improved classification, diagnosis and prognosis of canine round cell tumours

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cangul, Taci

    2001-01-01

    As the name suggests, canine round cell tumour (RCTs) are composed of cells with a round morphology. There is some discrepancy amongst authors as to which tumours belong to this category, but most designate lymphomas, melanomas, plasmacytomas, transmissible venereal tumours (TVTs), histiocytomas,

  3. Improved genetic manipulation of human embryonic stem cells.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Braam, S.R.; Denning, C.; van den Brink, S.; Kats, P.; Hochstenbach, R.; Passier, R.; Mummery, C.L.

    2008-01-01

    Low efficiency of transfection limits the ability to genetically manipulate human embryonic stem cells (hESCs), and differences in cell derivation and culture methods require optimization of transfection protocols. We transiently transferred multiple independent hESC lines with different growth

  4. Topology optimization for improving the performance of solar cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2014-01-01

    This work introduces the application of Topology Optimization (TO) to design optimal front metallization patterns for solar cells and increase their power output. A challenging aspect of the solar cell electrode design problem is the strong nonlinear relation between the active layer current and the

  5. Improvement In Rabbit Corneal Cell Suspension Viability After Freezing With Gingko Biloba Extrakt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Murad Aktan

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available We investigated whether the addition of Gingko Biloba extract (EGb 761 to rabbit corneal epithelial medium before cell freezing improved cell viability after freezing then thawing. After removal of corneas, they were treated with enzymes and the corneal epithelium was prepared as a single cell suspension in freezing media with or without EGb 761. After freezing for two weeks then thawing, a higher cell viability was found in the cornea cell suspensions which had been frozen pretreated with EGb 761 in the media. The improvement with corneal cell viability with EGb 761 pretreatment is postulated to be based on the antioxidant capacity of the plant extract.

  6. Distinct Responses of Stem Cells to Telomere Uncapping-A Potential Strategy to Improve the Safety of Cell Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Chang Ching; Ma, Dong Liang; Yan, Ting-Dong; Fan, XiuBo; Poon, Zhiyong; Poon, Lai-Fong; Goh, Su-Ann; Rozen, Steve G; Hwang, William Ying Khee; Tergaonkar, Vinay; Tan, Patrick; Ghosh, Sujoy; Virshup, David M; Goh, Eyleen L K; Li, Shang

    2016-10-01

    In most human somatic cells, the lack of telomerase activity results in progressive telomere shortening during each cell division. Eventually, DNA damage responses triggered by critically short telomeres induce an irreversible cell cycle arrest termed replicative senescence. However, the cellular responses of human pluripotent stem cells to telomere uncapping remain unknown. We generated telomerase knockout human embryonic stem (ES) cells through gene targeting. Telomerase inactivation in ES cells results in progressive telomere shortening. Telomere DNA damage in ES cells and neural progenitor cells induces rapid apoptosis when telomeres are uncapped, in contrast to fibroblast cells that enter a state of replicative senescence. Significantly, telomerase inactivation limits the proliferation capacity of human ES cells without affecting their pluripotency. By targeting telomerase activity, we can functionally separate the two unique properties of human pluripotent stem cells, namely unlimited self-renewal and pluripotency. We show that the potential of ES cells to form teratomas in vivo is dictated by their telomere length. By controlling telomere length of ES cells through telomerase inactivation, we can inhibit teratoma formation and potentially improve the safety of cell therapies involving terminally differentiated cells as well as specific progenitor cells that do not require sustained cellular proliferation in vivo, and thus sustained telomerase activity. Stem Cells 2016;34:2471-2484. © 2016 AlphaMed Press.

  7. Improved infiltration of stem cells on electrospun nanofibers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shabani, Iman; Haddadi-Asl, Vahid; Seyedjafari, Ehsan; Babaeijandaghi, Farshad; Soleimani, Masoud

    2009-01-01

    Nanofibrous scaffolds have been recently used in the field of tissue engineering because of their nano-size structure which promotes cell attachment, function, proliferation and infiltration. In this study, nanofibrous polyethersulfone (PES) scaffolds was prepared via electrospinning. The scaffolds were surface modified by plasma treatment and collagen grafting. The surface changes then investigated by contact angle measurements and FTIR-ATR. The results proved grafting of the collagen on nanofibers surface and increased hydrophilicity after plasma treatment and collagen grafting. The cell interaction study was done using stem cells because of their ability to differentiate to different kinds of cell lines. The cells had normal morphology on nanofibers and showed very high infiltration through collagen grafted PES nanofibers. This infiltration capability is very useful and needed to make 3D scaffolds in tissue engineering.

  8. Cell Factory Stability and Genetic Circuits for Improved Strain Development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rugbjerg, Peter

    . However, all synthetic gene systems -­ including the target metabolic pathways themselves -­ represent a possible fitness burden to the cell and thus constitute a threat to strain stability. In this thesis, several studies served to develop genetic systems for optimizing cell factory development...... systems can challenge the stability of strain designs. A metabolite-­producing Escherichia coli strain was long-­term cultured to study production stability and the dynamic effects of mutations within the cell population. A genetic error landscape of pathway disruptions was identified including particular......, recurring error modes. Driven by a gain in fitness, these errors within 70 generations led to a transformation of the strain to a population of genetic non-­‐producer cells. Knowledge about these mechanisms and the applied simple mathematical model may likely serve to realizemore stable microbial cell...

  9. Improved Activation toward Primary Colorectal Cancer Cells by Antigen-Specific Targeting Autologous Cytokine-Induced Killer Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Schlimper

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Adoptive therapy of malignant diseases with cytokine-induced killer (CIK cells showed promise in a number of trials; the activation of CIK cells from cancer patients towards their autologous cancer cells still needs to be improved. Here, we generated CIK cells ex vivo from blood lymphocytes of colorectal cancer patients and engineered those cells with a chimeric antigen receptor (CAR with an antibody-defined specificity for carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA. CIK cells thereby gained a new specificity as defined by the CAR and showed increase in activation towards CEA+ colon carcinoma cells, but less in presence of CEA− cells, indicated by increased secretion of proinflammatory cytokines. Redirected CIK activation was superior by CAR-mediated CD28-CD3ζ than CD3ζ signaling only. CAR-engineered CIK cells from colon carcinoma patients showed improved activation against their autologous, primary carcinoma cells from biopsies resulting in more efficient tumour cell lysis. We assume that adoptive therapy with CAR-modified CIK cells shows improved selectivity in targeting autologous tumour lesions.

  10. Mesenchymal stem cells homing to improve bone healing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weiping Lin

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Cell therapy continues to attract growing interest as a promising approach to treat a variety of diseases. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs have been one of the most intensely studied candidates for cell therapy. Since the homing capacity of MSCs is an important determinant of effective MSC-based therapy, the enhancement of homing efficiency is essential for optimizing the therapeutic outcome. Furthermore, trafficking of endogenous MSCs to damaged tissues, also referred to as endogenic stem cell homing, and the subsequent participation of MSCs in tissue regeneration are considered to be a natural self-healing response. Therefore, strategies to stimulate and reinforce the mobilisation and homing of MSCs have become a key point in regenerative medicine. The current review focuses on advances in the mechanisms and factors governing trafficking of MSCs, and the relationship between MSC mobilisation and skeletal diseases, providing insights into strategies for their potential translational implications.

  11. Immune cell screening of a nanoparticle library improves atherosclerosis therapy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tang, J.; Baxter, S.; Menon, A.; Alaarg, Amr Muhmed Sabry Abdelhakeem; Sanchez-Gaytan, B.L.; Fay, F.; Zhao, Yiming; Quimet, M.; Braza, M.S.; Longo, V.A.; Abdel-Atti, D.; Duivenvoorden, R.; Calcagno, Claudia; Storm, Gerrit; Tsimikas, S.; Moore, Kathryn; Swirski, F.K.; Nahrendorf, M.; Fisher, E.A.; Pérez-Medina, C.; Fayad, Z.A.; Reiner, T.; Mulder, W.J.M.

    2016-01-01

    Immunological complexity in atherosclerosis warrants targeted treatment of specific inflammatory cells that aggravate the disease. With the initiation of large phase III trials investigating immunomodulatory drugs for atherosclerosis, cardiovascular disease treatment enters a new era. We here

  12. Mast Cell Inhibition Improves Pulmonary Vascular Remodeling in Pulmonary Hypertension

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bartelds, Beatrijs; van Loon, Rosa Laura E.; Mohaupt, Saffloer; Wijnberg, Hans; Dickinson, Michael G.; Takens, Janny; van Albada, Mirjam; Berger, Rolf M. F.; Boersma, B.

    Background: Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a progressive angioproliferative disease with high morbidity and mortality. Although the histopathology is well described, its pathogenesis is largely unknown. We previously identified the increased presence of mast cells and their markers in a

  13. An improved method for staining cell colonies in clonogenic assays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guda, Kishore; Natale, Leanna; Markowitz, Sanford D

    2007-06-01

    Clonogenic assay is a widely used experimental approach to test for the effects of drugs/genes on the growth and proliferative characteristics of cells in vitro. Accurate quantitation of treatment effects in clonogeneic assays depends on the ability to visualize and count cell colonies precisely. We report a novel method (referred as ETeB) for staining cell colonies grown on plastic and specially coated substrates like collagen. Using colon cancer cell lines grown on plastic and collagen, we compared the colony staining efficiencies of the widely used methylene blue, and Ethidium bromide (ETeB) stains. Results show that the ETeB protocol works well on plastic and is extremely effective for staining colonies on collagen when compared to methylene blue. The key features and advantages of ETeB technique are; (a) reduction in background for colonies grown on collagen and possibly other substrates, (b) the whole procedure takes less than a minute, (c) no post-stain washing step is required which eliminates colony losses for cell lines that are loosely adherent, (d) colony visualization and counting can be done immediately following the staining procedure using a standard UV illuminator and software, and (e) the method works across a wide variety of cell lines. The simplicity and robustness of this procedure should warrant its usage in both small and large-scale clonogenic experiments.

  14. Uterine-derived progenitor cells are immunoprivileged and effectively improve cardiac regeneration when used for cell therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ludke, Ana; Wu, Jun; Nazari, Mansoreh; Hatta, Kota; Shao, Zhengbo; Li, Shu-Hong; Song, Huifang; Ni, Nathan C; Weisel, Richard D; Li, Ren-Ke

    2015-07-01

    Cell therapy to prevent cardiac dysfunction after myocardial infarction (MI) is less effective in aged patients because aged cells have decreased regenerative capacity. Allogeneic transplanted stem cells (SCs) from young donors are usually rejected. Maintaining transplanted SC immunoprivilege may dramatically improve regenerative outcomes. The uterus has distinct immune characteristics, and we showed that reparative uterine SCs home to the myocardium post-MI. Here, we identify immunoprivileged uterine SCs and assess their effects on cardiac regeneration after allogeneic transplantation. We found more than 20% of cells in the mouse uterus have undetectable MHC I expression by flow cytometry. Uterine MHC I((neg)) and MHC I((pos)) cells were separated by magnetic cell sorting. The MHC I((neg)) population expressed the SC markers CD34, Sca-1 and CD90, but did not express MHC II or c-kit. In vitro, MHC I((neg)) and ((pos)) SCs show colony formation and endothelial differentiation capacity. In mixed leukocyte co-culture, MHC I((neg)) cells showed reduced cell death and leukocyte proliferation compared to MHC I((pos)) cells. MHC I((neg)) and ((pos)) cells had significantly greater angiogenic capacity than mesenchymal stem cells. The benefits of intramyocardial injection of allogeneic MHC I((neg)) cells after MI were comparable to syngeneic bone marrow cell transplantation, with engraftment in cardiac tissue and limited recruitment of CD4 and CD8 cells up to 21 days post-MI. MHC I((neg)) cells preserved cardiac function, decreased infarct size and improved regeneration post-MI. This new source of immunoprivileged cells can induce neovascularization and could be used as allogeneic cell therapy for regenerative medicine. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Targeting myeloid cells using nanoparticles to improve cancer immunotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amoozgar, Zohreh; Goldberg, Michael S

    2015-08-30

    While nanoparticles have traditionally been used to deliver cytotoxic drugs directly to tumors to induce cancer cell death, emerging data suggest that nanoparticles are likely to generate a larger impact on oncology through the delivery of agents that can stimulate antitumor immunity. Tumor-targeted nanocarriers have generally been used to localize chemotherapeutics to tumors and thus decrease off-target toxicity while enhancing efficacy. Challengingly, tumor heterogeneity and evolution render tumor-intrinsic approaches likely to succumb to relapse. The immune system offers exquisite specificity, cytocidal potency, and long-term activity that leverage an adaptive memory response. For this reason, the ability to manipulate immune cell specificity and function would be desirable, and nanoparticles represent an exciting means by which to perform such manipulation. Dendritic cells and tumor-associated macrophages are cells of the myeloid lineage that function as natural phagocytes, so they naturally take up nanoparticles. Dendritic cells direct the specificity and potency of cellular immune responses that can be targeted for cancer vaccines. Herein, we discuss the specific criteria needed for efficient vaccine design, including but not limited to the route of administration, size, morphology, surface charge, targeting ligands, and nanoparticle composition. In contrast, tumor-associated macrophages are critical mediators of immunosuppression whose trans-migratory abilities can be exploited to localize therapeutics to the tumor core and which can be directly targeted for elimination or for repolarization to a tumor suppressive phenotype. It is likely that a combination of targeting dendritic cells to stimulate antitumor immunity and tumor-associated macrophages to reduce immune suppression will impart significant benefits and result in durable antitumor responses. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Improvement of multicrystalline silicon wafer solar cells by post ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Administrator

    1Silicon Technology Unit (UDTS), 02 Bd Frantz Fanon, BP. 140, Alger-7 Merveilles, Algiers, Algeria. 2Houari Boumediene University of Science and Technology (USTHB), Bab Ezzouar, Algiers, Algeria. 3SSN-Research Centre, Rajiv ... ally, for solar cells metallization a standard screen print- ing process is applied. Initially ...

  17. Improved Erythrocyte Osmotic Fragility and Packed Cell Volume ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Aloe barbadensis is a popular house plant that has a long history of a multipurpose folk remedy. It has been documented to have anti-diabetic, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory effects. The effect of Aloe barbadensis juice extract on erythrocyte osmotic fragility, packed cell volume and haemoglobin concentration in Wistar rats ...

  18. Performance improvement of whey-driven microbial fuel cells by ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Various methods are available for the recycling and treatment of cheese whey with the objective of enhancing sustainable manufacturing. Currently, an increasing interest is on the anaerobic bioremediation of whey with the added benefit of generating electricity in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Since microorganisms are the ...

  19. Modular Approach for Continuous Cell-Level Balancing to Improve Performance of Large Battery Packs: Preprint

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Muneed ur Rehman, M.; Evzelman, M.; Hathaway, K.; Zane, R.; Plett, G. L.; Smith, K.; Wood, E.; Maksimovic, D.

    2014-10-01

    Energy storage systems require battery cell balancing circuits to avoid divergence of cell state of charge (SOC). A modular approach based on distributed continuous cell-level control is presented that extends the balancing function to higher level pack performance objectives such as improving power capability and increasing pack lifetime. This is achieved by adding DC-DC converters in parallel with cells and using state estimation and control to autonomously bias individual cell SOC and SOC range, forcing healthier cells to be cycled deeper than weaker cells. The result is a pack with improved degradation characteristics and extended lifetime. The modular architecture and control concepts are developed and hardware results are demonstrated for a 91.2-Wh battery pack consisting of four series Li-ion battery cells and four dual active bridge (DAB) bypass DC-DC converters.

  20. Endothelial and beta cell composite aggregates for improved function of a bioartificial pancreas encapsulation device.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skrzypek, Katarzyna; Barrera, Yazmin Brito; Groth, Thomas; Stamatialis, Dimitrios

    2018-03-01

    Encapsulation of pancreatic islets or beta cells is a promising strategy for treatment of type 1 diabetes by providing an immune isolated environment and allowing for transplantation in a different location than the liver. However, islets used for encapsulation often show lower functionality due to the damaging of islet endothelial cells during the isolation procedure. Factors produced by endothelial cells have great impact on beta cell insulin secretion. Therefore, mutual signaling between endothelial cells and beta cells should be considered for the development of encapsulation systems to achieve high insulin secretion and maintain beta cell viability. Here, we investigate whether co-culture of beta cells with endothelial cells could improve beta cell function within encapsulation devices. Mouse insulinoma MIN6 cells and human umbilical vein endothelial cells were used for creating composite aggregates on agarose microwell platform. The composite aggregates were encapsulated within flat poly(ether sulfone)/polyvinylpyrrolidone device. Their functionality was assessed by glucose-induced insulin secretion test and compared to non-encapsulated free-floating aggregates. We created composite aggregates of 80-100 µm in diameter, closely mimicking pancreatic islets. Upon glucose stimulation, their insulin secretion is improved in comparison to aggregates consisting of only MIN6 cells. Moreover, the composite aggregates encapsulated within a device secrete more insulin than aggregates consisting of only MIN6 cells. Composite aggregates of MIN6 cells with human umbilical vein endothelial cells have improved insulin secretion in comparison to MIN6 aggregates showing that the interaction of beta cell and endothelial cell is crucial for a functional encapsulation system.

  1. Development of CAR T cells designed to improve antitumor efficacy and safety

    OpenAIRE

    Jaspers, Janneke E.; Brentjens, Renier J.

    2017-01-01

    Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy has shown promising efficacy against hematologic malignancies. Antitumor activity of CAR T cells, however, needs to be improved to increase therapeutic efficacy in both hematologic and solid cancers. Limitations to overcome are ‘on-target, off-tumor’ toxicity, antigen escape, short CAR T cell persistence, little expansion, trafficking to the tumor and inhibition of T cell activity by an inhibitory tumor microenvironment. Here we will discuss how ...

  2. Stem Cell Therapy to Improve Burn Wound Healing

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-03-01

    using NanoSight. (B) NanoSight video-derived images showing extracellular vesicles (diluted 1:500 in saline). (C) Particle size distribution and...significant observation in finding the presence of extracellular vesicles in the saline fluid (containing MSCs) administered to burn patients (Figure...D). Extracellular vesicles are membrane bound particles released by cells that carry numerous regulatory elements including proteins, peptides

  3. Use of piracetam improves sickle cell deformability in vitro and in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gini, E K; Sonnet, J

    1987-01-01

    Microsieving diluted suspensions of oxygenated sickle cell anaemia (HbSS) cells on polycarbonate filters shows that piracetam improves the red cell deformability in vitro. In vivo an oral intake of 160 mg/kg/day divided in four doses enhances the HbSS cell deformability as actively as it does in in vitro experiments. The drug is also able partially to restore the impaired deformability of physiologically deoxygenated HbSS cells. These findings are consistent with the results of clinical trials, which show that continuous treatment with piracetam reduces the incidence of vaso-occlusive crises in patients with sickle cell disease. PMID:3818978

  4. Accelerated and Rational Design of Improved CHO Cell Factories

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grav, Lise Marie

    . This allows us to i) facilitate improved studies of gene functions, ii) remove cellular traits that are disadvantageous to protein production, iii) control and predict the level and stability of protein expression, and iv) design and engineer new cellular functions. Overall, the results of this thesis...

  5. Serum insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) and IGF-binding protein 3 levels are increased in central precocious puberty

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Juul, A; Scheike, Thomas Harder; Nielsen, C T

    1995-01-01

    between IGF-I and IGFBP-3 (i.e. free biologically active IGF-I) declined concomitantly with a decrease in growth velocity. Serum levels of IGF-I and IGFBP-3 (expressed as the SD score for bone age), but not those of estradiol, correlated with height velocity before and during treatment (r = 0.34; P ...Central precocious puberty (CPP) is characterized by early activation of the pituitary-gonadal axis, which leads to increased growth velocity and development of secondary sexual characteristics. It is generally believed that gonadal sex steroids stimulate pulsatile GH secretion, which, in turn......, stimulates insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) and IGF-binding protein 3 (IGFBP-3) production. However, little is known about GH, IGF-I, and IGFBP-3 serum levels in children with precocious puberty. Treatment of CPP by GnRH agonists has become the treatment of choice. However, the effect of long term...

  6. Approaches to Optimizing Animal Cell Culture Process: Substrate Metabolism Regulation and Protein Expression Improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yuanxing

    Some high value proteins and vaccines for medical and veterinary applications by animal cell culture have an increasing market in China. In order to meet the demands of large-scale productions of proteins and vaccines, animal cell culture technology has been widely developed. In general, an animal cell culture process can be divided into two stages in a batch culture. In cell growth stage a high specific growth rate is expected to achieve a high cell density. In production stage a high specific production rate is stressed for the expression and secretion of qualified protein or replication of virus. It is always critical to maintain high cell viability in fed-batch and perfusion cultures. More concern has been focused on two points by the researchers in China. First, the cell metabolism of substrates is analyzed and the accumulation of toxic by-products is decreased through regulating cell metabolism in the culture process. Second, some important factors effecting protein expression are understood at the molecular level and the production ability of protein is improved. In pace with the rapid development of large-scale cell culture for the production of vaccines, antibodies and other recombinant proteins in China, the medium design and process optimization based on cell metabolism regulation and protein expression improvement will play an important role. The chapter outlines the main advances in metabolic regulation of cell and expression improvement of protein in animal cell culture in recent years.

  7. An Improved Ghost-cell Immersed Boundary Method for Compressible Inviscid Flow Simulations

    KAUST Repository

    Chi, Cheng

    2015-05-01

    This study presents an improved ghost-cell immersed boundary approach to represent a solid body in compressible flow simulations. In contrast to the commonly used approaches, in the present work ghost cells are mirrored through the boundary described using a level-set method to farther image points, incorporating a higher-order extra/interpolation scheme for the ghost cell values. In addition, a shock sensor is in- troduced to deal with image points near the discontinuities in the flow field. Adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) is used to improve the representation of the geometry efficiently. The improved ghost-cell method is validated against five test cases: (a) double Mach reflections on a ramp, (b) supersonic flows in a wind tunnel with a forward- facing step, (c) supersonic flows over a circular cylinder, (d) smooth Prandtl-Meyer expansion flows, and (e) steady shock-induced combustion over a wedge. It is demonstrated that the improved ghost-cell method can reach the accuracy of second order in L1 norm and higher than first order in L∞ norm. Direct comparisons against the cut-cell method demonstrate that the improved ghost-cell method is almost equally accurate with better efficiency for boundary representation in high-fidelity compressible flow simulations. Implementation of the improved ghost-cell method in reacting Euler flows further validates its general applicability for compressible flow simulations.

  8. New protocetid whale from the middle eocene of pakistan: birth on land, precocial development, and sexual dimorphism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philip D Gingerich

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Protocetidae are middle Eocene (49-37 Ma archaeocete predators ancestral to later whales. They are found in marine sedimentary rocks, but retain four legs and were not yet fully aquatic. Protocetids have been interpreted as amphibious, feeding in the sea but returning to land to rest. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Two adult skeletons of a new 2.6 meter long protocetid, Maiacetus inuus, are described from the early middle Eocene Habib Rahi Formation of Pakistan. M. inuus differs from contemporary archaic whales in having a fused mandibular symphysis, distinctive astragalus bones in the ankle, and a less hind-limb dominated postcranial skeleton. One adult skeleton is female and bears the skull and partial skeleton of a single large near-term fetus. The fetal skeleton is positioned for head-first delivery, which typifies land mammals but not extant whales, evidence that birth took place on land. The fetal skeleton has permanent first molars well mineralized, which indicates precocial development at birth. Precocial development, with attendant size and mobility, were as critical for survival of a neonate at the land-sea interface in the Eocene as they are today. The second adult skeleton is the most complete known for a protocetid. The vertebral column, preserved in articulation, has 7 cervicals, 13 thoracics, 6 lumbars, 4 sacrals, and 21 caudals. All four limbs are preserved with hands and feet. This adult is 12% larger in linear dimensions than the female skeleton, on average, has canine teeth that are 20% larger, and is interpreted as male. Moderate sexual dimorphism indicates limited male-male competition during breeding, which in turn suggests little aggregation of food or shelter in the environment inhabited by protocetids. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Discovery of a near-term fetus positioned for head-first delivery provides important evidence that early protocetid whales gave birth on land. This is consistent with skeletal

  9. Assessment of High Rates of Precocious Male Maturation in a Spring Chinook Salmon Supplementation Hatchery Program, Annual Report 2002-2003.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Larsen, Donald; Beckman, Brian; Cooper, Kathleen

    2003-08-01

    The Yakima River Spring Chinook Salmon Supplementation Project in Washington State is currently one of the most ambitious efforts to enhance a natural salmon population in the United States. Over the past five years we have conducted research to characterize the developmental physiology of naturally- and hatchery-reared wild progeny spring chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) in the Yakima River basin. Fish were sampled at the main hatchery in Cle Elum, at remote acclimation sites and, during smolt migration, at downstream dams. Throughout these studies the maturational state of all fish was characterized using combinations of visual and histological analysis of testes, gonadosomatic index (GSI), and measurement of plasma 11-ketotestosterone (11-KT). We established that a plasma 11-KT threshold of 0.8 ng/ml could be used to designate male fish as either immature or precociously maturing approximately 8 months prior to final maturation (1-2 months prior to release as 'smolts'). Our analyses revealed that 37-49% of the hatchery-reared males from this program undergo precocious maturation at 2 years of age and a proportion of these fish appear to residualize in the upper Yakima River basin throughout the summer. An unnaturally high incidence of precocious male maturation may result in loss of potential returning anadromous adults, skewing of female: male sex ratios, ecological, and genetic impacts on wild populations and other native species. Precocious male maturation is significantly influenced by growth rate at specific times of year and future studies will be conducted to alter maturation rates through seasonal growth rate manipulations.

  10. Pathological and incidental findings on brain MRI in a single-center study of 229 consecutive girls with early or precocious puberty

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mogensen, Signe Sloth; Aksglaede, Lise; Mouritsen, Annette

    2012-01-01

    Central precocious puberty may result from organic brain lesions, but is most frequently of idiopathic origin. Clinical or biochemical factors which could predict a pathological brain MRI in girls with CPP have been searched for. With the recent decline in age at pubertal onset among US...... and European girls, it has been suggested that only girls with CPP below 6 years of age should have brain MRI performed....

  11. Incorporation of bone marrow cells in pancreatic pseudoislets improves posttransplant vascularization and endocrine function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christine Wittig

    Full Text Available Failure of revascularization is known to be the major reason for the poor outcome of pancreatic islet transplantation. In this study, we analyzed whether pseudoislets composed of islet cells and bone marrow cells can improve vascularization and function of islet transplants. Pancreatic islets isolated from Syrian golden hamsters were dispersed into single cells for the generation of pseudoislets containing 4×10(3 cells. To create bone marrow cell-enriched pseudoislets 2×10(3 islet cells were co-cultured with 2×10(3 bone marrow cells. Pseudoislets and bone marrow cell-enriched pseudoislets were transplanted syngeneically into skinfold chambers to study graft vascularization by intravital fluorescence microscopy. Native islet transplants served as controls. Bone marrow cell-enriched pseudoislets showed a significantly improved vascularization compared to native islets and pseudoislets. Moreover, bone marrow cell-enriched pseudoislets but not pseudoislets normalized blood glucose levels after transplantation of 1000 islet equivalents under the kidney capsule of streptozotocin-induced diabetic animals, although the bone marrow cell-enriched pseudoislets contained only 50% of islet cells compared to pseudoislets and native islets. Fluorescence microscopy of bone marrow cell-enriched pseudoislets composed of bone marrow cells from GFP-expressing mice showed a distinct fraction of cells expressing both GFP and insulin, indicating a differentiation of bone marrow-derived cells to an insulin-producing cell-type. Thus, enrichment of pseudoislets by bone marrow cells enhances vascularization after transplantation and increases the amount of insulin-producing tissue. Accordingly, bone marrow cell-enriched pseudoislets may represent a novel approach to increase the success rate of islet transplantation.

  12. Cell surface glycan engineering of neural stem cells augments neurotropism and improves recovery in a murine model of multiple sclerosis

    KAUST Repository

    Merzaban, Jasmeen S.

    2015-09-13

    Neural stem cell (NSC)-based therapies offer potential for neural repair in central nervous system (CNS) inflammatory and degenerative disorders. Typically, these conditions present with multifocal CNS lesions making it impractical to inject NSCs locally, thus mandating optimization of vascular delivery of the cells to involved sites. Here, we analyzed NSCs for expression of molecular effectors of cell migration and found that these cells are natively devoid of E-selectin ligands. Using glycosyltransferase-programmed stereosubstitution (GPS), we glycan engineered the cell surface of NSCs ("GPS-NSCs") with resultant enforced expression of the potent E-selectin ligand HCELL (hematopoietic cell E-/L-selectin ligand) and of an E-selectin-binding glycoform of neural cell adhesion molecule ("NCAM-E"). Following intravenous (i.v.) injection, short-term homing studies demonstrated that, compared with buffer-treated (control) NSCs, GPS-NSCs showed greater neurotropism. Administration of GPS-NSC significantly attenuated the clinical course of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), with markedly decreased inflammation and improved oligodendroglial and axonal integrity, but without evidence of long-term stem cell engraftment. Notably, this effect of NSC is not a universal property of adult stem cells, as administration of GPS-engineered mouse hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells did not improve EAE clinical course. These findings highlight the utility of cell surface glycan engineering to boost stem cell delivery in neuroinflammatory conditions and indicate that, despite the use of a neural tissue-specific progenitor cell population, neural repair in EAE results from endogenous repair and not from direct, NSC-derived cell replacement.

  13. Novel and improved yeast cell factories for biosustainable processes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Workman, Mhairi

    2014-01-01

    The utilization of an increasingly diverse range of cheap waste substrates will be an ongoing challenge for the bio-based economy, where the mobilization of nutrients from a variety of waste products will be necessary for realization of biosustainability on an industrial scale. Bioprocesses...... utilizing traditionally applied cell factories are generally based on a limited range of substrates (mainly glucose). However, a wider diversity in substrate range is highly desirable in developing biorefinery scenarios where feed-stocks containing a number of carbon sources are typically employed...

  14. Using cell phones to improve language skills: the Hadeda project

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Butgereit, L

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available  essential   for  economic  development.     It  has  been  shown that  language skills have a direct impact on the employment and earning capabilities of  individuals. This has been shown to be true in English[1] and non­English speaking  countries[2] and... in both first world and third world countries. Unfortunately,   the cell  phone has been blamed for   the degradation of   language  skills[3].  Teachers have lamented the lack of spelling skills with pupils who use cell  phones, SMS (often called 'texting' in some English­speaking...

  15. Improved Flow-Field Structures for Direct Methanol Fuel Cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gurau, Bogdan [Nuvant Systems Inc., Crown Point, IN (United States)

    2013-05-31

    The direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) is ideal if high energy-density liquid fuels are required. Liquid fuels have advantages over compressed hydrogen including higher energy density and ease of handling. Although state-of-the-art DMFCs exhibit manageable degradation rates, excessive fuel crossover diminishes system energy and power density. Although use of dilute methanol mitigates crossover, the concomitant lowering of the gross fuel energy density (GFED) demands a complex balance-of-plant (BOP) that includes higher flow rates, external exhaust recirculation, etc. An alternative approach is redesign of the fuel delivery system to accommodate concentrated methanol. NuVant Systems Inc. (NuVant) will maximize the GFED by design and assembly of a DMFC that uses near neat methanol. The approach is to tune the diffusion of highly concentrated methanol (to the anode catalytic layer) to the back-diffusion of water formed at the cathode (i.e. in situ generation of dilute methanol at the anode layer). Crossover will be minimized without compromising the GFED by innovative integration of the anode flow-field and the diffusion layer. The integrated flow-field-diffusion-layers (IFDLs) will widen the current and potential DMFC operating ranges and enable the use of cathodes optimized for hydrogen-air fuel cells.

  16. Detection and visualization improvement of spermatozoa cells by digital holography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miccio, L.; Finizio, A.; Memmolo, P.; Paturzo, M.; Merola, F.; Coppola, G.; Di Caprio, G.; Gioffrè, M.; Puglisi, R.; Balduzzi, D.; Galli, A.; Ferraro, P.

    2011-07-01

    Numerical analysis is implemented to investigate biological sample starting from Digital Holographic (DH) recording. The aim is to improve visualization and detection of cow spermatozoa. Digital holograms are recorded in the off-axis geometry where optical setup is a Mach-Zehnder interferometer. Then holograms are numerically manipulated to retrieve, besides the usual Quantitative Phase Map (QPM), Differential Interference Contrast (DIC) visualization. Furthermore, a new approach, named digital self-referencing holography, is described it's able to accomplish quantitative phase analysis especially useful for specimen flowing in microfluidic channels.

  17. Improving the performance of conventional and column froth flotation cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arnold, B.J. [CQ Inc., Homer City, PA (United States)

    1995-11-01

    Many existing mining operations hover on the brink of producing competitively priced fuel with marginally acceptable sulfur levels. To remain competitive, these operations need to improve the yield of their coal processing facilities, lower the sulfur content of their clean coal, or lower the ash content of their clean coal. Fine coal cleaning processes offer the best opportunity for coal producers to increase their yield of high quality product. Over 200 coal processing plants in the U.S. already employ some type of conventional or column flotation device to clean fines. an increase in efficiency in these existing circuits could be the margin required to make these coal producers competitive.

  18. Durable, Low-cost, Improved Fuel Cell Membranes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chris Roger; David Mountz; Wensheng He; Tao Zhang

    2011-03-17

    The development of low cost, durable membranes and membranes electrode assemblies (MEAs) that operate under reduced relative humidity (RH) conditions remain a critical challenge for the successful introduction of fuel cells into mass markets. It was the goal of the team lead by Arkema, Inc. to address these shortages. Thus, this project addresses the following technical barriers from the fuel cells section of the Hydrogen Fuel Cells and Infrastructure Technologies Program Multi-Year Research, Development and Demonstration Plan: (A) Durability (B) Cost Arkema’s approach consisted of using blends of polyvinylidenefluoride (PVDF) and proprietary sulfonated polyelectrolytes. In the traditional approach to polyelectrolytes for proton exchange membranes (PEM), all the required properties are “packaged” in one macromolecule. The properties of interest include proton conductivity, mechanical properties, durability, and water/gas transport. This is the case, for example, for perfluorosulfonic acid-containing (PFSA) membranes. However, the cost of these materials is high, largely due to the complexity and the number of steps involved in their synthesis. In addition, they suffer other shortcomings such as mediocre mechanical properties and insufficient durability for some applications. The strength and originality of Arkema’s approach lies in the decoupling of ion conductivity from the other requirements. Kynar® PVDF provides an exceptional combination of properties that make it ideally suited for a membrane matrix (Kynar® is a registered trademark of Arkema Inc.). It exhibits outstanding chemical resistance in highly oxidative and acidic environments. In work with a prior grant, a membrane known as M41 was developed by Arkema. M41 had many of the properties needed for a high performance PEM, but had a significant deficiency in conductivity at low RH. In the first phase of this work, the processing parameters of M41 were explored as a means to increase its proton

  19. Improved Structure and Function in Autosomal Recessive Polycystic Rat Kidneys with Renal Tubular Cell Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, K J; Zhang, Jizhong; Han, Ling; Kamocka, Malgorzata; Miller, Caroline; Gattone, Vincent H; Dominguez, Jesus H

    2015-01-01

    Autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease is a truly catastrophic monogenetic disease, causing death and end stage renal disease in neonates and children. Using PCK female rats, an orthologous model of autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease harboring mutant Pkhd1, we tested the hypothesis that intravenous renal cell transplantation with normal Sprague Dawley male kidney cells would improve the polycystic kidney disease phenotype. Cytotherapy with renal cells expressing wild type Pkhd1 and tubulogenic serum amyloid A1 had powerful and sustained beneficial effects on renal function and structure in the polycystic kidney disease model. Donor cell engraftment and both mutant and wild type Pkhd1 were found in treated but not control PCK kidneys 15 weeks after the final cell infusion. To examine the mechanisms of global protection with a small number of transplanted cells, we tested the hypothesis that exosomes derived from normal Sprague Dawley cells can limit the cystic phenotype of PCK recipient cells. We found that renal exosomes originating from normal Sprague Dawley cells carried and transferred wild type Pkhd1 mRNA to PCK cells in vivo and in vitro and restricted cyst formation by cultured PCK cells. The results indicate that transplantation with renal cells containing wild type Pkhd1 improves renal structure and function in autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease and may provide an intra-renal supply of normal Pkhd1 mRNA.

  20. Lipofectamine and related cationic lipids strongly improve adenoviral infection efficiency of primitive human hematopoietic cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byk, T; Haddada, H; Vainchenker, W; Louache, F

    1998-11-20

    Adenoviral vectors have the potential to infect a large number of cell types including quiescent cells. Their use in hematopoietic cells is limited by the episomal form of their DNA, leading to transgene loss in the progeny cells. However, the use of this vector may be interesting for short-term in vitro modifications of primitive human hematopoietic cells. Therefore, we have investigated the ability of adenovirus to transduce cord blood CD34+ cells. Several promoters were tested using the lacZ reporter gene. The PGK and CMV promoters induced transgene expression in 18-25% of the cells, whereas the HTLV-I and especially the RSV promoter were almost inactive. To improve infection efficiency, adenovirus was complexed with cationic lipids. Lipofectamine, Cellfectin, and RPR120535b, but not Lipofectin, Lipofectace, or DOTAP, markedly improved transgene expression in CD34+ cells (from 19 to 35%). Lipofectamine strongly enhanced infection efficiency of the poorly infectable primitive CD34+CD38low cells (from 11 to 28%) whereas the more mature CD34+CD38+ cells were only slightly affected (from 24 to 31%). Lipofectamine tripled the infection of CFU-GMs and LTC-ICs derived from the CD34+CD38low cell fraction (from 4 to 12% and from 5 to 16%, respectively) and doubled that of BFU-Es (from 13 to 26%). We conclude that cationic lipids can markedly increase the efficiency of adenovirus-mediated gene transfer into primitive hematopoietic cells.

  1. Improved Structure and Function in Autosomal Recessive Polycystic Rat Kidneys with Renal Tubular Cell Therapy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K J Kelly

    Full Text Available Autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease is a truly catastrophic monogenetic disease, causing death and end stage renal disease in neonates and children. Using PCK female rats, an orthologous model of autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease harboring mutant Pkhd1, we tested the hypothesis that intravenous renal cell transplantation with normal Sprague Dawley male kidney cells would improve the polycystic kidney disease phenotype. Cytotherapy with renal cells expressing wild type Pkhd1 and tubulogenic serum amyloid A1 had powerful and sustained beneficial effects on renal function and structure in the polycystic kidney disease model. Donor cell engraftment and both mutant and wild type Pkhd1 were found in treated but not control PCK kidneys 15 weeks after the final cell infusion. To examine the mechanisms of global protection with a small number of transplanted cells, we tested the hypothesis that exosomes derived from normal Sprague Dawley cells can limit the cystic phenotype of PCK recipient cells. We found that renal exosomes originating from normal Sprague Dawley cells carried and transferred wild type Pkhd1 mRNA to PCK cells in vivo and in vitro and restricted cyst formation by cultured PCK cells. The results indicate that transplantation with renal cells containing wild type Pkhd1 improves renal structure and function in autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease and may provide an intra-renal supply of normal Pkhd1 mRNA.

  2. Acute stress during ontogeny suppresses innate, but not acquired immunity in a semi-precocial bird (Larus delawarensis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chin, Eunice H; Quinn, James S; Burness, Gary

    2013-11-01

    Wild animals often encounter adverse conditions, and in response, activate their hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. To date, work examining the development of the stress response has focused on altricial species, with little work focusing on species with other developmental patterns. Additionally, the effects of acute stress on indices of innate and adaptive immunity have been little studied in birds, particularly during development. We examined the ontogeny of the stress response in the semi-precocial ring-billed gull (Larus delawarensis). At hatch, 10, and 20days post-hatching, chicks underwent a standardized handling stress protocol, with blood samples taken within 3min of, and 30min after, initial disturbance. Levels of corticosterone (CORT), natural antibodies (NAb), complement activity, and immunoglobulins (IgY) were assessed in plasma samples. In contrast with altricial species, ring-billed gull chicks had detectible CORT levels at hatch, and were able to mount a stress response. At all ages, acute handling stress depressed NAb levels and complement-mediated lysis, but not IgY levels. IgY levels were higher in two chick broods than three chick broods, suggesting levels are determined in part by resource dependence. Our data provide insight into the development of the stress response and immune function in a colonial waterbird species, in which chicks are mobile shortly post hatch, and subject to aggression and possible injury from nearby adults. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Body image and depression in girls with idiopathic precocious puberty treated with gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Min-Seon; Kim, Eun-Young

    2016-09-01

    Precocious puberty (PP) is associated with psychological and behavioral problems. This study aimed to evaluate the perception of body image and depression in girls with PP receiving gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) analogue therapy. From March to August 2013, 82 girls with PP receiving GnRH analogue therapy were enrolled. Height, weight, body mass index, and stages of pubertal development were assessed. Participants completed a series of questionnaires on their body image perception and pubertal self-assessment. The depression score was calculated using the Korean Kovacs' Children's Depression Inventory. The patients perceived their body to be more obese than the controls did. The mean depression score did not differ between the patients and controls. The mean depression scores according to Tanner stages (1: prepubertal, 2: early pubertal, and 3-5: mid to late pubertal stage) by self-assessment were 5.2±3.6, 6.8±4.9, and 11.4±10.1 ( P body build and figure (%) and the mean depression scores in patients were: dissatisfied (25.6%, 9.7±7.8) and satisfied (74.4%, 5.5±3.4) ( P body build and figure were found to significantly affect the depression score( P body image and breast development. Such incorrect body image seems to contribute to depression score.

  4. Improvement of White Matter Changes on Neuroimaging Modalities After Stem Cell Transplant in Metachromatic Leukodystrophy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Egmond, M.E.; Pouwels, P.J.W.; Boelens, J.J.; Lindemans, C.A.; Barkhof, F.; Steenwijk, M.D.; van Hasselt, P.M.; van der Knaap, M.S.; Wolf, N.I.

    2013-01-01

    Importance: We sought to illustrate improvement of cerebral white matter changes in metachromatic leukodystrophy after treatment with hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT). Observations : We conducted serial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS) as

  5. Reducing macrophages to improve bone marrow stromal cell survival in the contused spinal cord.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ritfeld, G.J.; Nandoe Tewarie, R.D.S.; Rahiem, S.T.; Hurtado, A.; Roos, R.A.; Grotenhuis, A.; Oudega, M.

    2010-01-01

    We tested whether reducing macrophage infiltration would improve the survival of allogeneic bone marrow stromal cells (BMSC) transplanted in the contused adult rat thoracic spinal cord. Treatment with cyclosporine, minocycline, or methylprednisolone all resulted in a significant decrease in

  6. IL-15 improves the cytotoxicity of cytokine-induced killer cells against leukemia cells by upregulating CD3+CD56+ cells and downregulating regulatory T cells as well as IL-35.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tao, Qianshan; Chen, Tianping; Tao, Lili; Wang, Huiping; Pan, Ying; Xiong, Shudao; Zhai, Zhimin

    2013-01-01

    Cytokine-induced killer (CIK) cells are usually generated from peripheral blood mononuclear cells with the stimulation of IL-2 in vitro. Unlike the conventional IL-2-stimulated CIK cells (IL-2-CIK cells), we investigated the characteristics and potential mechanism of IL-15-stimulated CIK cells (IL-15-CIK cells) in this study. Compared with IL-2-CIK cells, the percentage of CD3CD56 cells was significantly increased in IL-15-CIK cells, but the expression of regulatory T (Treg) cells and IL-35 was significantly decreased in IL-15-CIK cells. Meanwhile, the in vitro cytotoxicity against human myeloid leukemia cells K562 of IL-15-CIK cells was significantly augmented compared with IL-2-CIK cells. These data suggest that IL-15 may improve the cytotoxicity of CIK cells against leukemia cells by upregulating CD3CD56 cells and downregulating Treg cells and IL-35.

  7. An improved ghost-cell immersed boundary method for compressible flow simulations

    KAUST Repository

    Chi, Cheng

    2016-05-20

    This study presents an improved ghost-cell immersed boundary approach to represent a solid body in compressible flow simulations. In contrast to the commonly used approaches, in the present work ghost cells are mirrored through the boundary described using a level-set method to farther image points, incorporating a higher-order extra/interpolation scheme for the ghost cell values. A sensor is introduced to deal with image points near the discontinuities in the flow field. Adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) is used to improve the representation of the geometry efficiently in the Cartesian grid system. The improved ghost-cell method is validated against four test cases: (a) double Mach reflections on a ramp, (b) smooth Prandtl-Meyer expansion flows, (c) supersonic flows in a wind tunnel with a forward-facing step, and (d) supersonic flows over a circular cylinder. It is demonstrated that the improved ghost-cell method can reach the accuracy of second order in L1 norm and higher than first order in L∞ norm. Direct comparisons against the cut-cell method demonstrate that the improved ghost-cell method is almost equally accurate with better efficiency for boundary representation in high-fidelity compressible flow simulations. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  8. β-Hydroxybutyrate improves β-cell mitochondrial function and survival

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MaryJane Sampson

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Pharmacological interventions aimed at improving outcomes in type 2 diabetes and achieving normoglycaemia, including insulin therapy, are increasingly common, despite the potential for substantial side effects. Carbohydrate-restricted diets that result in increased ketogenesis have effectively been used to improve insulin resistance, a fundamental feature of type 2 diabetes. In addition, limited evidence suggests that states of ketogenesis may also improve β-cell function in type 2 diabetics. Considering how little is known regarding the effects of ketones on β-cell function, we sought to determine the specific effects of β-Hydroxybutyrate (βHB on pancreatic β-cell physiology and mitochondrial function. βHB treatment increased β-cell survival and proliferation, while also increasing mitochondrial mass, respiration and adenosine triphosphate (ATP production. Despite these improvements, were unable to detect an increase in β-cell or islet insulin production and secretion. Collectively, these findings have two implications. Firstly, they indicate that β-cells have improved survival and proliferation in the midst of βHB, the circulating form of ketones. Secondly, insulin secretion does not appear to be directly related to apparent improvements in mitochondrial function and cellular proliferation.

  9. Versatile microscale screening platform for improving recombinant protein productivity in Chinese hamster ovary cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Henning Gram; Nilsson, Claes Nymand; Lund, Anne Mathilde

    2015-01-01

    Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells are widely used as cell factories for the production of biopharmaceuticals. In contrast to the highly optimized production processes for monoclonal antibody (mAb)-based biopharmaceuticals, improving productivity of non-mAb therapeutic glycoproteins is more likely...

  10. Effects of pomegranate extract in supplementing gonadotropin-releasing hormone therapy on idiopathic central precocious puberty in Chinese girls: a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jinsheng; Tang, Jiulai

    2017-02-22

    Central precocious puberty (CPP) without organic abnormality is called idiopathic CPP (ICPP). The objective of this trial was to evaluate the effects of pomegranate extract in supplementing gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) analog therapy on ICPP-affected girls in the Chinese population. 286 girls, diagnosed with ICPP were initially enrolled into this trial, and among them 225 eligible patients were randomized to receive a combinational GnRH analog treatment supplemented with either a placebo or pomegranate extract on a daily basis for a period of 3 months. Their demographics, secondary sexual characteristics and hormone profiles were analyzed at baseline and end of trial. After 3 months of treatment, demographic profiles including bone age, growth velocity and height standard deviation score for bone age, and secondary sexual characteristics including uterus and ovary volume, as well as serum hormone profiles including estradiol, peak luteinizing hormone and insulin-like growth factor 1 were all significantly improved in girls receiving a combinational treatment of both GnRH analog and pomegranate extract. Daily consumption of pomegranate extract was able to supplement and improve the treatment outcomes of the GnRH analog therapy for ICPP in Chinese girls.

  11. Theoretical analysis of improved efficiency of silicon-wafer solar cells with textured nanotriangular grating structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yaoju; Zheng, Jun; Zhao, Xuesong; Ruan, Xiukai; Cui, Guihua; Zhu, Haiyong; Dai, Yuxing

    2018-03-01

    A practical model of crystalline silicon-wafer solar cells is proposed in order to enhance the light absorption and improve the conversion efficiency of silicon solar cells. In the model, the front surface of the silicon photovoltaic film is designed to be a textured-triangular-grating (TTG) structure, and the ITO contact film and the antireflection coating (ARC) of glass are coated on the TTG surface of silicon solar cells. The optical absorption spectrum of solar cells are simulated by applying the finite difference time domain method. Electrical parameters of the solar cells are calculated using two models with and without carrier loss. The effect of structure parameters on the performance of the TTG cell is discussed in detail. It is found that the thickness (tg) of the ARC, period (p) of grating, and base angle (θ) of triangle have a crucial influence on the conversion efficiency. The optimal structure of the TTG cell is designed. The TTG solar cell can produce higher efficiency in a wide range of solar incident angle and the average efficiency of the optimal TTG cell over 7:30-16:30 time of day is 8% higher than that of the optimal plane solar cell. In addition, the study shows that the bulk recombination of carriers has an influence on the conversion efficiency of the cell, the conversion efficiency of the actual solar cell with carrier recombination is reduced by 20.0% of the ideal cell without carrier recombination.

  12. Lysine demethylase inhibition protects pancreatic β cells from apoptosis and improves β-cell function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Backe, Marie Balslev; Andersson, Jan Legaard; Bacos, Karl

    2018-01-01

    ) protects β cells from cytokine-induced apoptosis and reduces type 1 diabetes incidence in animals. We hypothesized that also lysine demethylases (KDMs) regulate β-cell fate in response to inflammatory stress. Expression of the demethylase Kdm6B was upregulated by proinflammatory cytokines suggesting...... a possible role in inflammation-induced β-cell destruction. Inhibition of KDM6 demethylases using the selective inhibitor GSK-J4 protected insulin-producing cells and human and mouse islets from cytokine-induced apoptosis by blunting nuclear factor (NF)-κB signaling and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress...

  13. Dual Functional Capability of Dendritic Cells - Cytokine-Induced Killer Cells in Improving Side Effects of Colorectal Cancer Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosińska, Paula; Gabryelska, Agata; Zasada, Malwina; Fichna, Jakub

    2017-01-01

    The aim of cancer therapy is to eradicate cancer without affecting healthy tissues. Current options available for treating colorectal cancer (CRC), including surgery, chemotherapy or radiotherapy, usually elicit multiple adverse effects and frequently fail to completely remove the tumor cells. Thus, there is a constant need for seeking cancer cell-specific therapeutics to improve the course of cancer therapy and reduce the risk of relapse. In this review we elaborate on the mechanisms underlying the immunotherapy with dendritic cells (DCs) and cytokine-induced killer (CIK) cells, and summarize their effectiveness and tolerability available clinical studies. Finally, we discuss the up-to-date combinatorial adoptive anti-cancer immunotherapy with CIK cells co-cultured with DCs that recently showed encouraging efficacy and usefulness in treating malignant disease, including CRC.

  14. Collagen Type I Improves the Differentiation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells towards Definitive Endoderm

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Camilla Holzmann; Petersen, Dorthe Roenn; Møller, Jonas Bech

    2015-01-01

    embryonic stem cells to the definitive endoderm lineage. The percentage of definitive endoderm cells after differentiation on collagen I and fibronectin was >85% and 65%, respectively. The cells on collagen I substrates displayed different morphology and gene expression during differentiation as assessed...... by time lapse studies compared to cells on the other tested substrates. Global gene expression analysis showed that cells differentiated on collagen I were largely similar to cells on fibronectin after completed differentiation. Collectively, the data suggest that collagen I induces a more rapid...... and consistent differentiation of stem cells to definitive endoderm. The results shed light on the importance of extracellular matrix proteins for differentiation and also points to a cost effective and easy method to improve differentiation....

  15. Autonomous magnetic labelling of functional mesenchymal stem cells for improved traceability and spatial control in cell therapy applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrison, Richard; Markides, Hareklea; Morris, Robert H; Richards, Paula; El Haj, Alicia J; Sottile, Virginie

    2017-08-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) represent a valuable resource for regenerative medicine treatments for orthopaedic repair and beyond. Following developments in isolation, expansion and differentiation protocols, efforts to promote clinical translation of emerging cellular strategies now seek to improve cell delivery and targeting. This study shows efficient live MSC labelling using silica-coated magnetic particles (MPs), which enables 3D tracking and guidance of stem cells. A procedure developed for the efficient and unassisted particle uptake was shown to support MSC viability and integrity, while surface marker expression and MSC differentiation capability were also maintained. In vitro, MSCs showed a progressive decrease in labelling over increasing culture time, which appeared to be linked to the dilution effect of cell division, rather than to particle release, and did not lead to detectable secondary particle uptake. Labelled MSC populations demonstrated magnetic responsiveness in vitro through directed migration in culture and, when seeded onto a scaffold, supporting MP-based approaches to cell targeting. The potential of these silica-coated MPs for MRI cell tracking of MSC populations was validated in 2D and in a cartilage repair model following cell delivery. These results highlight silica-coated magnetic particles as a simple, safe and effective resource to enhance MSC targeting for therapeutic applications and improve patient outcomes. © 2016 The Authors Journal of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. © 2016 The Authors Journal of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Improved performance in GaInNAs solar cells by hydrogen passivation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fukuda, M.; Whiteside, V. R.; Keay, J. C.; Meleco, A.; Sellers, I. R.; Hossain, K.; Golding, T. D.; Leroux, M.; Al Khalfioui, M.

    2015-01-01

    The effect of UV-activated hydrogenation on the performance of GaInNAs solar cells is presented. A proof-of-principle investigation was performed on non-optimum GaInNAs cells, which allowed a clearer investigation of the role of passivation on the intrinsic nitrogen-related defects in these materials. Upon optimized hydrogenation of GaInNAs, a significant reduction in the presence of defect and impurity based luminescence is observed as compared to that of unpassivated reference material. This improvement in the optical properties is directly transferred to an improved performance in solar cell operation, with a more than two-fold improvement in the external quantum efficiency and short circuit current density upon hydrogenation. Temperature dependent photovoltaic measurements indicate a strong contribution of carrier localization and detrapping processes, with non-radiative processes dominating in the reference materials, and evidence for additional strong radiative losses in the hydrogenated solar cells

  17. Improved Power Conversion Efficiency of Inverted Organic Solar Cells by Incorporating Au Nanorods into Active Layer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Yeyuan; Liu, Chunyu; Li, Jinfeng; Zhang, Xinyuan; Li, Zhiqi; Shen, Liang; Guo, Wenbin; Ruan, Shengping

    2015-07-29

    This Research Article describes a cooperative plasmonic effect on improving the performance of organic solar cells. When Au nanorods(NRs) are incorporated into the active layers, the designed project shows superior enhanced light absorption behavior comparing with control devices, which leads to the realization of organic solar cell with power conversion efficiency of 6.83%, accounting for 18.9% improvement. Further investigations unravel the influence of plasmonic nanostructures on light trapping, exciton generation, dissociation, and charge recombination and transport inside the thin films devices. Moreover, the introduction of high-conductivity Au NRs improves electrical conductivity of the whole device, which contributes to the enhanced fill factor.

  18. Basic aspects for improving the energy conversion efficiency of hetero-junction organic photovoltaic cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sou Ryuzaki

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Hetero-junction organic photovoltaic (OPV cells consisting of donor (D and acceptor (A layers have been regarded as next-generation PV cells, because of their fascinating advantages, such as lightweight, low fabrication cost, resource free, and flexibility, when compared to those of conventional PV cells based on silicon and semiconductor compounds. However, the power conversion efficiency (η of the OPV cells has been still around 8%, though more than 10% efficiency has been required for their practical use. To fully optimize these OPV cells, it is necessary that the low mobility of carriers/excitons in the OPV cells and the open circuit voltage (VOC, of which origin has not been understood well, should be improved. In this review, we address an improvement of the mobility of carriers/excitons by controlling the crystal structure of a donor layer and address how to increase the VOC for zinc octaethylporphyrin [Zn(OEP]/C60 hetero-junction OPV cells [ITO/Zn(OEP/C60/Al]. It was found that crystallization of Zn(OEP films increases the number of inter-molecular charge transfer (IMCT excitons and enlarges the mobility of carriers and IMCT excitons, thus significantly improving the external quantum efficiency (EQE under illumination of the photoabsorption band due to the IMCT excitons. Conversely, charge accumulation of photo-generated carriers in the vicinity of the donor/acceptor (D/A interface was found to play a key role in determining the VOC for the OPV cells.

  19. Basic aspects for improving the energy conversion efficiency of hetero-junction organic photovoltaic cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryuzaki, Sou; Onoe, Jun

    2013-01-01

    Hetero-junction organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells consisting of donor (D) and acceptor (A) layers have been regarded as next-generation PV cells, because of their fascinating advantages, such as lightweight, low fabrication cost, resource free, and flexibility, when compared to those of conventional PV cells based on silicon and semiconductor compounds. However, the power conversion efficiency (η) of the OPV cells has been still around 8%, though more than 10% efficiency has been required for their practical use. To fully optimize these OPV cells, it is necessary that the low mobility of carriers/excitons in the OPV cells and the open circuit voltage (V OC), of which origin has not been understood well, should be improved. In this review, we address an improvement of the mobility of carriers/excitons by controlling the crystal structure of a donor layer and address how to increase the V OC for zinc octaethylporphyrin [Zn(OEP)]/C60 hetero-junction OPV cells [ITO/Zn(OEP)/C60/Al]. It was found that crystallization of Zn(OEP) films increases the number of inter-molecular charge transfer (IMCT) excitons and enlarges the mobility of carriers and IMCT excitons, thus significantly improving the external quantum efficiency (EQE) under illumination of the photoabsorption band due to the IMCT excitons. Conversely, charge accumulation of photo-generated carriers in the vicinity of the donor/acceptor (D/A) interface was found to play a key role in determining the V OC for the OPV cells.

  20. Methods for Using Small Non-Coding RNAs to Improve Recombinant Protein Expression in Mammalian Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Inwood

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The ability to produce recombinant proteins by utilizing different “cell factories” revolutionized the biotherapeutic and pharmaceutical industry. Chinese hamster ovary (CHO cells are the dominant industrial producer, especially for antibodies. Human embryonic kidney cells (HEK, while not being as widely used as CHO cells, are used where CHO cells are unable to meet the needs for expression, such as growth factors. Therefore, improving recombinant protein expression from mammalian cells is a priority, and continuing effort is being devoted to this topic. Non-coding RNAs are RNA segments that are not translated into a protein and often have a regulatory role. Since their discovery, major progress has been made towards understanding their functions. Non-coding RNA has been investigated extensively in relation to disease, especially cancer, and recently they have also been used as a method for engineering cells to improve their protein expression capability. In this review, we provide information about methods used to identify non-coding RNAs with the potential of improving recombinant protein expression in mammalian cell lines.

  1. Cytotoxic T cell responses to Streptococcus are associated with improved prognosis of oral squamous cell carcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jie; Sun, Feng; Lin, Xiaoyu; Li, Zaiye; Mao, Xiaohe; Jiang, Canhua

    2018-01-01

    Several species of Streptococcus, such as S. salivarius, S. mitis, and S. anginosus, are found to extensively colonize the oral cavity and the upper respiratory tract, and have been shown to increase in patients with oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). Accumulating evidence have revealed that commensal bacteria are involved in antitumor immunity via T cell-mediated mechanisms, but the role of Streptococcus enrichment in OSCC is yet unclear. In this study, we stimulated peripheral blood mononuclear cells from non-cancer controls (NCs) and OSCC patients with S. salivarius, S. mitis, and S. anginosus. We observed that compared to NC subjects, OSCC patients at earlier stages had higher frequencies of granzyme B-expressing CD8 T cells for all Streptococcus species tested, while OSCC patients at more advanced stages had higher frequencies of granzyme B-expressing CD8 T cells for S. anginosus but not other Streptococcus species. In OSCC patients, the Streptococcus-reactive CD8 T cells presented significantly lower levels of PD-1 and TIM-3 expression than Streptococcus-nonreactive CD8 T cells. The clinical outcomes of OSCC patients in our cohort were tracked for 24 months after the resection of the primary tumor. In patients that did not present tumor recurrence, the frequencies of S. salivarius-reactive and S. mitis-reactive CD8 T cells were significantly higher than that in patients that developed recurrent tumor. Furthermore, in patients with tumor recurrence, the duration between primary tumor resection and tumor recurrence was positively associated with the frequencies of S. salivarius-reactive and S. anginosus-reactive CD8 T cells. Together, we demonstrated that Streptococcus-reactive CD8 T cell responses might contribute to antitumor immunity in OSCC patients. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Body image and depression in girls with idiopathic precocious puberty treated with gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min-Seon Choi

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available PurposePrecocious puberty (PP is associated with psychological and behavioral problems. This study aimed to evaluate the perception of body image and depression in girls with PP receiving gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH analogue therapy.MethodsFrom March to August 2013, 82 girls with PP receiving GnRH analogue therapy were enrolled. Height, weight, body mass index, and stages of pubertal development were assessed. Participants completed a series of questionnaires on their body image perception and pubertal self-assessment. The depression score was calculated using the Korean Kovacs' Children's Depression Inventory.ResultsThe patients perceived their body to be more obese than the controls did. The mean depression score did not differ between the patients and controls. The mean depression scores according to Tanner stages (1: prepubertal, 2: early pubertal, and 3–5: mid to late pubertal stage by self-assessment were 5.2±3.6, 6.8±4.9, and 11.4±10.1 (P<0.05, respectively. The perception of overall body build and figure (% and the mean depression scores in patients were: dissatisfied (25.6%, 9.7±7.8 and satisfied (74.4%, 5.5±3.4 (P<0.05. In multiple linear regression analysis, self-T3 (Tanner stage 3–5 by self-awareness and dissatisfaction about overall body build and figure were found to significantly affect the depression score(P<0.05.ConclusionThe perception of pubertal status and satisfaction about height or weight are unrelated to objective physical findings. Patients with PP are prone to distorted perception about their body image and breast development. Such incorrect body image seems to contribute to depression score.

  3. Leptin and adiponectin levels in girls with central precocious puberty before and during GnRH agonist treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jae Won Yoo

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available PurposeThe effects of gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa treatment on the energy metabolism in girls with central precocious puberty (CPP are controversial. We focused the changes and related factors of serum levels of leptin and adiponectin in girls with CPP before and during GnRHa treatment.MethodsThirty girls with idiopathic CPP were enrolled in the study. Their auxological data and fasting blood were collected at the baseline and after six months of GnRHa treatment.ResultsAfter treatment, height (P<0.001, weight (P<0.001, and serum leptin levels (P=0.033 were significantly increased, whereas body mass index (BMI, homeostasis model of assessment-insulin resistance, serum adiponectin levels, and adiponectin/leptin ratio exhibited no significant changes. A Pearson correlation analysis showed that height, weight, BMI, and their standard deviation scores (SDSs, but not basal LH, FSH, and estradiol, were significantly correlated with serum leptin levels before and after GnRHa treatment. After a multiple linear regression analysis, only BMI was associated with serum leptin levels. Moreover, leptin SDSs adjusted for BMI were not significantly different before and after GnRHa. The Δ leptin levels (r2=0.207, P=0.012, but not with Δ leptin SDS (r2=0.019, P=0.556, during GnRHa treatment were positively correlated with Δ BMI.ConclusionThese results suggest that GnRHa treatment in girls with CPP does not affect serum levels of leptin and adiponectin and insulin resistance. Serum leptin levels were depend on the changes in BMI during GnRHa treatment.

  4. Results of a Second Year of Therapy with the 12-Month Histrelin Implant for the Treatment of Central Precocious Puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samar Rahhal

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Gonadotropin releasing hormone analogs (GnRHas are standard of care for central precocious puberty (CPP. The histrelin subcutaneous implant is safe and effective in the treatment of CPP for one year. Objective. The study evaluates a second year of therapy in children with CPP who received a new implant after one year of treatment. Methods. A prospective one-year study following an initial 12-month treatment period was conducted. Results. Thirty-one patients (29 girls aged 7.7±1.5 years received a second implant. Eighteen were naïve to GnRHa therapy at first implantation. Peak LH declined from 0.92±0.58 mIU/mL at 12 months to 0.51±0.33 mIU/mL at 24 months (P < .0001 in naïve subjects, and from 0.74±0.50 mIU/mL at 12 months to 0.45±0.35 mIU/mL at 24 months (P=.0081 in previously treated subjects. Predicted adult height increased by 5.1 cm at 24 months (P=.0001. Minor implant site reactions occurred in 61%, while minor difficulties with explantation occurred in 32.2% of subjects. Conclusion. The histrelin implant demonstrates profound hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis suppression when a new implant is placed for a second year of treatment. Prospective follow-up of this therapeutic modality for the treatment of CPP is needed.

  5. Adult height in girls with central precocious puberty treated with gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist with or without growth hormone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mo Kyung Jung

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available PurposeThere is controversy surrounding the growth outcomes of treatment with gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa in central precocious puberty (CPP. We analyzed height preservation after treatment with GnRHa with and without growth hormone (GH in girls with CPP.MethodsWe reviewed the medical records of 82 girls with idiopathic CPP who had been treated with GnRHa at Severance Children's Hospital from 2004 to 2014. We assessed the changes in height standard deviation score (SDS for bone age (BA, and compared adult height (AH with midparental height (MPH and predicted adult height (PAH during treatment in groups received GnRHa alone (n=59 or GnRHa plus GH (n=23.ResultsIn the GnRHa alone group, the height SDS for BA was increased during treatment. AH (160.4±4.23 cm was significantly higher than the initial PAH (156.6±3.96 cm (P<0.001, and it was similar to the MPH (159.9±3.52 cm. In the GnRHa plus GH group, the height SDS for BA was also increased during treatment. AH (159.3±5.33 cm was also higher than the initial PAH (154.6±2.55 cm (P<0.001, which was similar to the MPH (158.1±3.31 cm. Height gain was slightly higher than that in the GnRHa alone group, however it statistically showed no significant correlation with GH treatment.ConclusionIn CPP girls treated with GnRHa, the height SDS for BA was increased, and the AH was higher than the initial PAH. Combined GH treatment showed a limited increase in height gain.

  6. Improvement of spinal contusion model by cotransplanting bone marrow stromal cells and induced BMSCs into oligodendrocytes-like cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaka, Gholam R; Tiraihi, Taki; Delshad, Alireza; Taheri, Taher; Kazemi, Hadi; Hassoun, Hayder K

    2017-10-01

    Demyelination is a common lesion in spinal cord injury, cell therapy is one of the approaches for replacing the lost oligodendrocytes. In this study, bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) have been transdifferentiated into oligodendrocyte-like cells (OLCs) and used in cytotherapy of contused spinal cords in rats. The BMSCs were collected from the rat long bones, and cultured and characterized by different markers, then they were preinduced with dimethyl sulfoxide followed by retinoic acid, and then the preinduced cells were induced with combination of basic fibroblast growth factor, platelet-derived growth factor and heregulin, followed by triiodothyronine. The OLCs were transplanted in the contused spinal cords of the rats, combined with undifferentiated BMSCs. Specific markers were used in order to characterize the cells by immunohistochemistry and real-time polymerase chain reaction. The BMSCs showed typical immnuoreactivity to the markers, and the OLCs were immunostained with specific markers. There was an improvement in the Basso, Beattie and Bresnahan score with reduction in the cavitation in the contused rats treated with OLCs combined with BMSCs. The transplanted cells were detected in the contused spinal cord. The combination of the transdifferentiated BMSCs into OLCs with the undifferentiated BMSCs improved the contused spinal cord.

  7. Enhanced Erbium-Doped Ceria Nanostructure Coating to Improve Solar Cell Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shehata, Nader; Clavel, Michael; Meehan, Kathleen; Samir, Effat; Gaballah, Soha; Salah, Mohammed

    2015-11-12

    This paper discusses the effect of adding reduced erbium-doped ceria nanoparticles (REDC NPs) as a coating on silicon solar cells. Reduced ceria nanoparticles doped with erbium have the advantages of both improving conductivity and optical conversion of solar cells. Oxygen vacancies in ceria nanoparticles reduce Ce 4+ to Ce 3+ which follow the rule of improving conductivity of solar cells through the hopping mechanism. The existence of Ce 3+ helps in the down-conversion from 430 nm excitation to 530 nm emission. The erbium dopant forms energy levels inside the low-phonon ceria host to up-convert the 780 nm excitations into green and red emissions. When coating reduced erbium-doped ceria nanoparticles on the back side of a solar cell, a promising improvement in the solar cell efficiency has been observed from 15% to 16.5% due to the mutual impact of improved electric conductivity and multi-optical conversions. Finally, the impact of the added coater on the electric field distribution inside the solar cell has been studied.

  8. Enhanced Erbium-Doped Ceria Nanostructure Coating to Improve Solar Cell Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nader Shehata

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper discusses the effect of adding reduced erbium-doped ceria nanoparticles (REDC NPs as a coating on silicon solar cells. Reduced ceria nanoparticles doped with erbium have the advantages of both improving conductivity and optical conversion of solar cells. Oxygen vacancies in ceria nanoparticles reduce Ce4+ to Ce3+ which follow the rule of improving conductivity of solar cells through the hopping mechanism. The existence of Ce3+ helps in the down-conversion from 430 nm excitation to 530 nm emission. The erbium dopant forms energy levels inside the low-phonon ceria host to up-convert the 780 nm excitations into green and red emissions. When coating reduced erbium-doped ceria nanoparticles on the back side of a solar cell, a promising improvement in the solar cell efficiency has been observed from 15% to 16.5% due to the mutual impact of improved electric conductivity and multi-optical conversions. Finally, the impact of the added coater on the electric field distribution inside the solar cell has been studied.

  9. Withania somnifera improves semen quality by combating oxidative stress and cell death and improving essential metal concentrations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shukla, Kamla Kant; Mahdi, Abbas Ali; Mishra, Vivek; Rajender, Singh; Sankhwar, Satya Narain; Patel, Devender; Das, Mukul

    2011-05-01

    This study investigated the effect of a 3-month treatment with Withania somnifera on apoptosis and intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) concentration of spermatozoa and the metal ions copper, zinc, iron and gold in seminal plasma from infertile men (normozoospermic, n=25; oligozoospermic, n=25; and asthenozoospermic, n=25). The apoptotic and necrotic cell distribution were analysed by annexin-V binding and propidium iodide uptake using flow cytometry. ROS generation was measured by fluorescence intensity and metal ions were analysed by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. The results demonstrated that, prior to treatment, sperm apoptosis and intracellular ROS concentrations were significantly higher in all groups of infertile men compared with controls (Pseminal plasma were lower. Treatment with W. somnifera significantly reduced apoptosis in normozoospermic and oligozoospermic men and ROS concentrations in oligozoospermic and asthenozoospermic men (all Piron, and gold in seminal plasma were measured. The apoptotic and necrotic cell distribution were analysed by annexin-V binding and propidium iodide uptake using flow cytometry. ROS generation was measured by fluorescence intensity and metal ions were analysed by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. The results demonstrated that prior, to treatment, apoptosis and intracellular ROS concentrations were significantly higher in all groups of infertile men compared with controls. Similarly, the concentrations of the essential metal ions Cu(2+), Zn(2+), Fe(2+) and Au(2+) in seminal plasma were lower. Treatment with W. somnifera significantly reduced apoptosis and ROS concentrations and improved metal ion concentrations in infertile subjects. It is concluded that W. somnifera improves semen quality by reducing oxidative stress and cell death and improving essential metal ion concentrations. Copyright © 2011 Reproductive Healthcare Ltd. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Targeting Vaccine-Induced Extrafollicular Pathway of B Cell Differentiation Improves Rabies Postexposure Prophylaxis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haley, Shannon L; Tzvetkov, Evgeni P; Meuwissen, Samantha; Plummer, Joseph R; McGettigan, James P

    2017-04-15

    Vaccine-induced B cells differentiate along two pathways. The follicular pathway gives rise to germinal centers (GCs) that can take weeks to fully develop. The extrafollicular pathway gives rise to short-lived plasma cells (PCs) that can rapidly secrete protective antibodies within days of vaccination. Rabies virus (RABV) postexposure prophylaxis (PEP) requires rapid vaccine-induced humoral immunity for protection. Therefore, we hypothesized that targeting extrafollicular B cell responses for activation would improve the speed and magnitude of RABV PEP. To test this hypothesis, we constructed, recovered, and characterized a recombinant RABV-based vaccine expressing murine B cell activating factor (BAFF) (rRABV-mBAFF). BAFF is an ideal molecule to improve early pathways of B cell activation, as it links innate and adaptive immunity, promoting potent B cell responses. Indeed, rRABV-mBAFF induced a faster, higher antibody response in mice and enhanced survivorship in PEP settings compared to rRABV. Interestingly, rRABV-mBAFF and rRABV induced equivalent numbers of GC B cells, suggesting that rRABV-mBAFF augmented the extrafollicular B cell pathway. To confirm that rRABV-mBAFF modulated the extrafollicular pathway, we used a signaling lymphocytic activation molecule (SLAM)-associated protein (SAP)-deficient mouse model. In response to antigen, SAP-deficient mice form extrafollicular B cell responses but do not generate GCs. rRABV-mBAFF induced similar anti-RABV antibody responses in SAP-deficient and wild-type mice, demonstrating that BAFF modulated immunity through the extrafollicular and not the GC B cell pathway. Collectively, strategies that manipulate pathways of B cell activation may facilitate the development of a single-dose RABV vaccine that replaces current complicated and costly RABV PEP. IMPORTANCE Effective RABV PEP is currently resource- and cost-prohibitive in regions of the world where RABV is most prevalent. In order to diminish the requirements for

  11. Cell loss during pseudoislet formation hampers profound improvements in islet lentiviral transduction efficacy for transplantation purposes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Callewaert, H; Gysemans, C; Cardozo, A K; Elsner, M; Tiedge, M; Eizirik, D L; Mathieu, C

    2007-01-01

    Islet transplantation is a promising treatment in type 1 diabetes, but the need for chronic immunosuppression is a major hurdle to broad applicability. Ex vivo introduction of agents by lentiviral vectors-improving beta-cell resistance against immune attack-is an attractive path to pursue. The aim of this study was to investigate whether dissociation of islets to single cells prior to viral infection and reaggregation before transplantation would improve viral transduction efficacy without cytotoxicity. This procedure improved transduction efficacy with a LV-pWPT-CMV-EGFP construct from 11.2 +/- 4.1% at MOI 50 in whole islets to 80.0 +/- 2.8% at MOI 5. Viability (as measured by Hoechst/PI) and functionality (as measured by glucose challenge) remained high. After transplantation, the transfected pseudoislet aggregates remained EGFP positive for more than 90 days and the expression of EGFP colocalized primarily with the insulin-positive beta-cells. No increased vulnerability to immune attack was observed in vitro or in vivo. These data demonstrate that dispersion of islets prior to lentiviral transfection and reaggregation prior to transplantation is a highly efficient way to introduce genes of interest into islets for transplantation purposes in vitro and in vivo, but the amount of beta-cells needed for normalization of glycemia was more than eightfold higher when using dispersed cell aggregates versus unmanipulated islets. The high price to pay to reach stable and strong transgene expression in islet cells is certainly an important cell loss.

  12. Hydrophobic Organic Hole Transporters for Improved Moisture Resistance in Metal Halide Perovskite Solar Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leijtens, Tomas; Giovenzana, Tommaso; Habisreutinger, Severin N; Tinkham, Jonathan S; Noel, Nakita K; Kamino, Brett A; Sadoughi, Golnaz; Sellinger, Alan; Snaith, Henry J

    2016-03-09

    Solar cells based on organic-inorganic perovskite semiconductor materials have recently made rapid improvements in performance, with the best cells performing at over 20% efficiency. With such rapid progress, questions such as cost and solar cell stability are becoming increasingly important to address if this new technology is to reach commercial deployment. The moisture sensitivity of commonly used organic-inorganic metal halide perovskites has especially raised concerns. Here, we demonstrate that the hygroscopic lithium salt commonly used as a dopant for the hole transport material in perovskite solar cells makes the top layer of the devices hydrophilic and causes the solar cells to rapidly degrade in the presence of moisture. By using novel, low cost, and hydrophobic hole transporters in conjunction with a doping method incorporating a preoxidized salt of the respective hole transporters, we are able to prepare efficient perovskite solar cells with greatly enhanced water resistance.

  13. Multicenter clinical trial of leuprolide acetate depot (Luphere depot 3.75 mg for efficacy and safety in girls with central precocious puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    You Jin Kim

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available PurposeWe evaluated the efficacy, safety and psychological aspect of monthly administrations of the gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists (GnRHa, leuprolide acetate depot (Luphere depot 3.75 mg, in patients with precocious puberty.MethodsA total of 54 girls with central precocious puberty were administered with leuprolide acetate (Luphere depot 3.75 mg every four weeks over 24 weeks. We evaluated the percentage of children exhibiting a suppressed luteinizing hormone (LH response to GnRH (LH peak≤3 IU/L, peak LH/follicle stimulating hormone (FSH ratio of GnRH stimulation test less than 1, change in bone age/chronologic age ratio, change in the Tanner stage and change in eating habit and psychological aspect.Results(1 The percentage of children exhibiting a suppressed LH response to GnRH, defined as an LH peak≤3 IU/L at 24 weeks was 96.3 % (52/54. (2 The percentage of children exhibiting peak LH/FSH ratio<1 at 24 weeks of the study was 94.4 % (51/54. (3 The ratio of bone age and chronological age significantly declined from 1.27±0.07 to 1.24±0.01 after the 6 months of the study. (4 The mean Tanner stage manifested a significant change 2.3±0.48 at baseline, down to 1.70±0.61 at 24 weeks. (5 Based on the questionnaires, the score for eating habits showed a significant change from the baseline 34.0±6.8 to 31.3±6.8. (6 The psychological assessment did not exhibit a significant difference except with scores for sociability, problem behavior total score and other problems.ConclusionThe leuprolide 3.75 mg (Luphere depot is useful and safety for treating children with central precocious puberty.

  14. Hematopoietic Niche - Exploring Biomimetic Cues to Improve the Functionality of Hematopoietic Stem/Progenitor Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Marta H G; de Soure, António M; Cabral, Joaquim M S; Ferreira, Frederico Castelo; da Silva, Cláudia L

    2018-02-01

    The adult bone marrow (BM) niche is a complex entity where a homeostatic hematopoietic system is maintained through a dynamic crosstalk between different cellular and non-cellular players. Signaling mechanisms triggered by cell-cell, cell-extracellular matrix (ECM), cell-cytokine interactions, and local microenvironment parameters are involved in controlling quiescence, self-renewal, differentiation, and migration of hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells (HSPC). A promising strategy to more efficiently expand HSPC numbers and tune their properties ex vivo is to mimic the hematopoietic niche through integration of adjuvant stromal cells, soluble cues, and/or biomaterial-based approaches in HSPC culture systems. Particularly, mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSC), through their paracrine activity or direct contact with HSPC, are thought to be a relevant niche player, positioning HSPC-MSC co-culture as a valuable platform to support the ex vivo expansion of hematopoietic progenitors. To improve the clinical outcome of hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT), namely when the available HSPC are present in a limited number such is the case of HSPC collected from umbilical cord blood (UCB), ex vivo expansion of HSPC is required without eliminating the long-term repopulating capacity of more primitive HSC. Here, we will focus on depicting the characteristics of co-culture systems, as well as other bioengineering approaches to improve the functionality of HSPC ex vivo. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  15. Manipulating Light to Understand and Improve Solar Cells (494th Brookhaven Lecture)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Eisaman, Matthew [BNL, Sustainable Energy Technologies Department

    2014-04-16

    Energy consumption around the world is projected to approximately triple by the end of the century, according to the 2005 Report from the U.S. Department of Energy's Basic Energy Sciences Workshop on Solar Energy Utilization. Much will change in those next 86 years, but for all the power the world needs—for everything from manufacturing and transportation to air conditioning and charging cell phone batteries—improved solar cells will be crucial to meet this future energy demand with renewable energy sources. At Brookhaven Lab, scientists are probing solar cells and exploring variations within the cells—variations that are so small they are measured in billionths of a meter—in order to make increasingly efficient solar cells and ultimately help reduce the overall costs of deploying solar power plants. Dr. Eisaman will discuss DOE's Sunshot Initiative, which aims to reduce the cost of solar cell-generated electricity by 2020. He will also discuss how he and collaborators at Brookhaven Lab are probing different material compositions within solar cells, measuring how efficiently they collect electrical charge, helping to develop a new class of solar cells, and improving solar-cell manufacturing processes.

  16. Improved cell activity on biodegradable photopolymer scaffolds using titanate nanotube coatings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beke, S., E-mail: szabolcs.beke@iit.it [Nanophysics, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Via Morego 30, 16163 Genova (Italy); Barenghi, R. [IEIIT, National Research Council (CNR), Via De Marini 6, 16149 Genova (Italy); Farkas, B.; Romano, I. [Nanophysics, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Via Morego 30, 16163 Genova (Italy); Kőrösi, L. [Department of Biotechnology, Nanophage Therapy Center, Enviroinvest Corporation, Kertváros u. 2, H-7632 Pécs (Hungary); Scaglione, S. [IEIIT, National Research Council (CNR), Via De Marini 6, 16149 Genova (Italy); Brandi, F. [Nanophysics, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Via Morego 30, 16163 Genova (Italy); Istituto Nazionale di Ottica, CNR, Via G. Moruzzi 1, 56124-Pisa (Italy)

    2014-11-01

    The development of bioactive materials is in the premise of tissue engineering. For several years, surface functionalization of scaffolds has been one of the most promising approaches to stimulate cellular activity and finally improve implant success. Herein, we describe the development of a bioactive composite scaffold composed of a biodegradable photopolymer scaffold and titanate nanotubes (TNTs). The biodegradable photopolymer scaffolds were fabricated by applying mask-projection excimer laser photocuring at 308 nm. TNTs were synthesized and then spin-coated on the porous scaffolds. Upon culturing fibroblast cells on scaffolds, we found that nanotubes coating affects cell viability and proliferation demonstrating that TNT coatings enhance cell growth on the scaffolds by further improving their surface topography. - Highlights: • Biodegradable scaffolds were produced by mask-assisted UV laser photocuring. • Titanate nanotube deposition was carried out without binding compounds or additives. • Titanate nanotube coatings enhanced cell viability and proliferation.

  17. Exogenous DNA internalisation by sperm cells is improved by combining lipofection and restriction enzyme mediated integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Churchil, R R; Gupta, J; Singh, A; Sharma, D

    2011-06-01

    1. Three types of exogenous DNA inserts, i.e. complete linearised pVIVO2-GFP/LacZ vector (9620 bp), the LacZ gene (5317 bp) and the GFP gene (2152 bp) were used to transfect chicken spermatozoa through simple incubation of sperm cells with insert. 2. PCR assay, Dot Blot hybridisation and Southern hybridisation showed the successful internalisation of exogenous DNA by chicken sperm cells. 3. Lipofection and Restriction Enzyme Mediated Integration (REMI) were used to improve the rate of internalisation of exogenous DNA by sperm cells. 4. Results from dot blot as well as Southern hybridisation were semi-quantified and improved exogenous DNA uptake by sperm cells through lipofection and REMI. Stronger signals were observed from hybridisation of LacZ as well as GFP specific probe with the DNA from lipofected exogenous DNA transfected sperm DNA in comparison with those transfected with nude exogenous DNA.

  18. Lutein improves cell viability and reduces Alu RNA accumulation in hydrogen peroxide challenged retinal pigment epithelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chong, You Sheng; Mai, Chun Wai; Leong, Chee Onn; Wong, Lai Chun

    2018-03-01

    Dysfunction of the microRNA (miRNA)-processing enzyme DICER1 and Alu RNA accumulation are linked to the pathogenesis of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). This study determined the optimal dose of lutein (LUT) and zeaxanthin (ZEA) to protect human retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells against hydrogen peroxide (H 2 O 2 ). The effect of the optimal dose of LUT and ZEA as DICER1 and Alu RNA modulators in cultured human RPE cells challenged with H 2 O 2 was investigated. ARPE-19 cells were pre-treated with LUT, ZEA, or both for 24 h before 200 μM H 2 O 2 challenge. Cell viability was measured by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. DICER1 and Alu RNA were quantified by western blotting and real-time polymerase chain reaction, respectively. H 2 O 2 increased cell Alu RNA expression and decreased cell viability of ARPE-19, but had no significant impact on the DICER1 protein level. LUT, alone and in combination with ZEA pre-treatment, prior to H 2 O 2 challenge significantly improved cell viability of ARPE-19 and reduced the level of Alu RNA compared to the negative control. These results support the use of LUT alone, and in combination with ZEA, in AMD prevention and treatment. This study is also the first to report LUT modulating effects on Alu RNA.

  19. Room temperature electrocompetent bacterial cells improve DNA transformation and recombineering efficiency.

    OpenAIRE

    Tu, Qiang; Yin, Jia; Fu, Jun; Herrmann, Jennifer; Li, Yuezhong; Yin, Yulong; Stewart, A Francis; Müller, Rolf; Zhang, Youming

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial competent cells are essential for cloning, construction of DNA libraries, and mutagenesis in every molecular biology laboratory. Among various transformation methods, electroporation is found to own the best transformation efficiency. Previous electroporation methods are based on washing and electroporating the bacterial cells in ice-cold condition that make them fragile and prone to death. Here we present simple temperature shift based methods that improve DNA transformation and re...

  20. Macrophages improve survival, proliferation and migration of engrafted myogenic precursor cells into MDX skeletal muscle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pierre-François Lesault

    Full Text Available Transplantation of muscle precursor cells is of therapeutic interest for focal skeletal muscular diseases. However, major limitations of cell transplantation are the poor survival, expansion and migration of the injected cells. The massive and early death of transplanted myoblasts is not fully understood although several mechanisms have been suggested. Various attempts have been made to improve their survival or migration. Taking into account that muscle regeneration is associated with the presence of macrophages, which are helpful in repairing the muscle by both cleansing the debris and deliver trophic cues to myoblasts in a sequential way, we attempted in the present work to improve myoblast transplantation by coinjecting macrophages. The present data showed that in the 5 days following the transplantation, macrophages efficiently improved: i myoblast survival by limiting their massive death, ii myoblast expansion within the tissue and iii myoblast migration in the dystrophic muscle. This was confirmed by in vitro analyses showing that macrophages stimulated myoblast adhesion and migration. As a result, myoblast contribution to regenerating host myofibres was increased by macrophages one month after transplantation. Altogether, these data demonstrate that macrophages are beneficial during the early steps of myoblast transplantation into skeletal muscle, showing that coinjecting these stromal cells may be used as a helper to improve the efficiency of parenchymal cell engraftment.

  1. Evidence Supporting Intralesional Stem Cell Therapy to Improve Equine Flexor Tendon Healing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sushmitha Durgam

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Clinical bottom lineCurrent experimental evidence suggests that intralesional stem cell administration improves the histological characteristics and matrix organisation of healing equine superficial digital flexor tendons (SDFT; however, the clinical relevance of these findings are not clear. Current case-based evidence suggests that cell-based therapies improve the quality of tendon healing and reduce the recurrence rates of SDFT injuries but the lack of any randomised, controlled prospective studies with function-based outcomes is still concerning, given the widespread advocacy for and use of ‘stem cell’ therapies for the treatment of equine tendon injuries. 

  2. Carbon nanotube-incorporated collagen hydrogels improve cell alignment and the performance of cardiac constructs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sun HY

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Hongyu Sun,* Jing Zhou,* Zhu Huang,* Linlin Qu,* Ning Lin,* Chengxiao Liang, Ruiwu Dai, Lijun Tang, Fuzhou Tian General Surgery Center, Chengdu Military General Hospital, Chengdu, China *These authors contributed equally to this work Abstract: Carbon nanotubes (CNTs provide an essential 2-D microenvironment for cardiomyocyte growth and function. However, it remains to be elucidated whether CNT nanostructures can promote cell–cell integrity and facilitate the formation of functional tissues in 3-D hydrogels. Here, single-walled CNTs were incorporated into collagen hydrogels to fabricate (CNT/Col hydrogels, which improved mechanical and electrical properties. The incorporation of CNTs (up to 1 wt% exhibited no toxicity to cardiomyocytes and enhanced cell adhesion and elongation. Through the use of immunohistochemical staining, transmission electron microscopy, and intracellular calcium-transient measurement, the incorporation of CNTs was found to improve cell alignment and assembly remarkably, which led to the formation of engineered cardiac tissues with stronger contraction potential. Importantly, cardiac tissues based on CNT/Col hydrogels were noted to have better functionality. Collectively, the incorporation of CNTs into the Col hydrogels improved cell alignment and the performance of cardiac constructs. Our study suggests that CNT/Col hydrogels offer a promising tissue scaffold for cardiac constructs, and might serve as injectable biomaterials to deliver cell or drug molecules for cardiac regeneration following myocardial infarction in the near future. Keywords: carbon nanotubes, collagen hydrogel, cardiac constructs, cell alignment, tissue functionality

  3. Improving Labor Productivity and Labor Elasticity at Multiproduct Japanese Cuisine Restaurant Introducing Cell-Production System

    OpenAIRE

    Shimamura, Takeshi; Takenaka, Takeshi; Ohura, Syuichi

    2013-01-01

    Part III: Sustainable Services; International audience; This study examined improvement of labor productivity and elasticity of labor hour on sales of a multiproduct Japanese cuisine restaurant. Conventionally, multiproduct restaurant operations include a line production system in the kitchen. Japanese chefs are assumed to be low-skilled workers with staff members supported by someone. A cell production system is introduced into a Japanese Cuisine restaurant to improve it. Results show that t...

  4. Testing and improving the redox stability of Ni-based solid oxide fuel cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pihlatie, Mikko; Ramos, Tania; Kaiser, Andreas

    2009-01-01

    cells. When the symmetric cells are reduced and redox cycled isothermally at 850 °C, no major change in the serial or polarisation resistance of the cell and electrodes was measured. When the cells are, after the similar initial reduction treatment, redox cycled at 650 °C, the serial resistance remains......Despite active development, solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) based on Ni-YSZ anodes still suffer from thermomechanical instability under conditions where the anode side is exposed to oxidising conditions at high temperature. In the first part of the paper, structures and solutions, which could...... improve the redox stability of Ni-YSZ anode supported SOFC's in terms of dimensional and mechanical stability are reported. Porosity is identified as a major microstructural parameter linked to the dimensional and structural stability during redox cycling. The cumulative redox strain (CRS) after three...

  5. Improved method and apparatus for electrostatically sorting biological cells. [DOE patent application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merrill, J.T.

    An improved method of sorting biological cells in a conventional cell sorter apparatus includes generating a fluid jet containing cells to be sorted, measuring the distance between the centers of adjacent droplets in a zone thereof defined at the point where the fluid jet separates into descrete droplets, setting the distance between the center of a droplet in said separation zone and the position along said fluid jet at which the cell is optically sensed for specific characteristics to be an integral multiple of said center-to-center distance, and disabling a charger from electrically charging a specific droplet if a cell is detected by the optical sensor in a position wherein it will be in the neck area between droplets during droplet formation rather than within a predetermined distance from the droplet center.

  6. Update on the Protective Molecular Pathways Improving Pancreatic Beta-Cell Dysfunction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandra Puddu

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The primary function of pancreatic beta-cells is to produce and release insulin in response to increment in extracellular glucose concentrations, thus maintaining glucose homeostasis. Deficient beta-cell function can have profound metabolic consequences, leading to the development of hyperglycemia and, ultimately, diabetes mellitus. Therefore, strategies targeting the maintenance of the normal function and protecting pancreatic beta-cells from injury or death might be crucial in the treatment of diabetes. This narrative review will update evidence from the recently identified molecular regulators preserving beta-cell mass and function recovery in order to suggest potential therapeutic targets against diabetes. This review will also highlight the relevance for novel molecular pathways potentially improving beta-cell dysfunction.

  7. A METHOD OF IMPROVING THE PRODUCTION OF BIOMASS OR A DESIRED PRODUCT FROM A CELL

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    1998-01-01

    the F¿1? ATPase or portions thereof is expressed, may be selected from prokaryotes and eukaryotes. In particular the DNA encoding F¿1? or a portion thereof may be derived from bacteria and eukaryotic microorganisms such as yeasts, other fungi and cell lines of higher organisms and be selected from......The production of biomass or a desired product from a cell can be improved by inducing conversion of ATP to ADP without primary effects on other cellular metabolites or functions which is achieved by expressing an uncoupled ATPase activity in said cell and incubating the cell with a suitable...... substrate to produce said biomass or product. This is conveniently done by expressing in said cell the soluble part (F¿1?) of the membrane bound (F¿0?F¿1? type) H?+¿-ATPase or a portion of F¿1? exhibiting ATPase activity. The organism from which the F¿1? ATPase or portions thereof is derived, or in which...

  8. Introducing catalyst in alkaline membrane for improved performance direct borohydride fuel cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qin, Haiying; Lin, Longxia; Chu, Wen; Jiang, Wei; He, Yan; Shi, Qiao; Deng, Yonghong; Ji, Zhenguo; Liu, Jiabin; Tao, Shanwen

    2018-01-01

    A catalytic material is introduced into the polymer matrix to prepare a novel polymeric alkaline electrolyte membrane (AEM) which simultaneously increases ionic conductivity, reduces the fuel cross-over. In this work, the hydroxide anion exchange membrane is mainly composed of poly(vinylalcohol) and alkaline exchange resin. CoCl2 is added into the poly(vinylalcohol) and alkaline exchange resin gel before casting the membrane to introduce catalytic materials. CoCl2 is converted into CoOOH after the reaction with KOH solution. The crystallinity of the polymer matrix decreases and the ionic conductivity of the composite membrane is notably improved by the introduction of Co-species. A direct borohydride fuel cell using the composite membrane exhibits an open circuit voltage of 1.11 V at 30 °C, which is notably higher than that of cells using other AEMs. The cell using the composite membrane achieves a maximum power density of 283 mW cm-2 at 60 °C while the cell using the membrane without Co-species only reaches 117 mW cm-2 at the same conditions. The outstanding performance of the cell using the composite membrane benefits from impregnation of the catalytic Co-species in the membrane, which not only increases the ionic conductivity but also reduces electrode polarization thus improves the fuel cell performance. This work provides a new approach to develop high-performance fuel cells through adding catalysts in the electrolyte membrane.

  9. SCF increases in utero-labeled stem cells migration and improves wound healing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zgheib, Carlos; Xu, Junwang; Mallette, Andrew C; Caskey, Robert C; Zhang, Liping; Hu, Junyi; Liechty, Kenneth W

    2015-01-01

    Diabetic skin wounds lack the ability to heal properly and constitute a major and significant complication of diabetes. Nontraumatic lower extremity amputations are the number one complication of diabetic skin wounds. The complexity of their pathophysiology requires an intervention at many levels to enhance healing and wound closure. Stem cells are a promising treatment for diabetic skin wounds as they have the ability to correct abnormal healing. Stem cell factor (SCF), a chemokine expressed in the skin, can induce stem cells migration, however the role of SCF in diabetic skin wound healing is still unknown. We hypothesize that SCF would correct the impairment and promote the healing of diabetic skin wounds. Our results show that SCF improved wound closure in diabetic mice and increased HIF-1α and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) expression levels in these wounds. SCF treatment also enhanced the migration of red fluorescent protein (RFP)-labeled skin stem cells via in utero intra-amniotic injection of lenti-RFP at E8. Interestingly these RFP+ cells are present in the epidermis, stain negative for K15, and appear to be distinct from the already known hair follicle stem cells. These results demonstrate that SCF improves diabetic wound healing in part by increasing the recruitment of a unique stem cell population present in the skin. © 2015 by the Wound Healing Society.

  10. Biomaterial strategies to improve the efficacy of bone marrow cell therapy for myocardial infarction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadlacki, Bora; Suuronen, Erik J

    2016-12-01

    The feasibility and safety of bone marrow cell (BMC) therapy for cardiac repair following myocardial infarction has been demonstrated in clinical studies, albeit with relatively modest structural and functional benefits. In response to the shortcomings of BMC therapy, the use of biomaterials to enhance cell transplantation is being investigated. Areas covered: The authors first review what has been learned from BMC therapies for the treatment of myocardial infarction in animal models and in clinical trials. Some issues that may be limiting the efficacy of BMC therapy are then described. Lastly, they summarize several biomaterial approaches that have been reported to improve transplanted cell retention and functional outcome, and then focus on how a material can enhance cell function such as proliferation, viability, endothelial differentiation and angiogenic potential. Expert opinion: Improvements are needed if BMC therapy is to become a viable treatment in the clinic. There is optimism that a biomaterial strategy will lead to superior results compared to the cell therapy alone. Through the identification of underlying cell-biomaterial mechanisms, the establishment of comparative standards, and an awareness of the lessons learned from cell therapy trials, biomaterial-enhanced BMC therapy may become an option for the treatment of heart disease patients.

  11. Development of silver-zinc cells of improved cycle life and energy density

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serenyi, Roberto; James, Stanley D.

    1994-03-01

    Substantial increases in the cost effectiveness and range of naval underwater vehicles are possible by virtue of advances made, in this program, to silver-zinc, vehicle propulsion batteries. To improve battery cycle life and energy density, electropermeable membranes (EPM's) were used as additives and/or as coatings for the negative electrodes and as coatings for conventional separator materials. Also, bismuth oxide was tested as an additive to the negative electrodes and P2291-40/20, a radiation-grafted polyethylene film, as a separator used in conjunction with silver-treated cellophane. EPM's used as negative electrode additives and also as coatings for Celgard 2500 microporous polypropylene greatly improved cells. Cells with EPM's used as coatings for the negative electrodes failed rapidly because of an error in formulation. Cells with 10 percent bismuth oxide in the negative electrodes exhibited substantially lower capacity than the standard cells and were removed from the test. Cells with radiation-grafted polyethylene separators provided fewer cycles than the standard cells, with 5 percent higher capacity and 6 percent lower utilization of active materials by cycle 60. However, the slightly better capacity of these cells, realized due to the additional space available for active materials, does not compensate for their generally unimpressive performance.

  12. Cell Labeling for 19F MRI: New and Improved Approach to Perfluorocarbon Nanoemulsion Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan Williams

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available This report describes novel perfluorocarbon (PFC nanoemulsions designed to improve ex vivo cell labeling for 19F magnetic resonance imaging (MRI. 19F MRI is a powerful non-invasive technique for monitoring cells of the immune system in vivo, where cells are labeled ex vivo with PFC nanoemulsions in cell culture. The quality of 19F MRI is directly affected by the quality of ex vivo PFC cell labeling. When co-cultured with cells for longer periods of time, nanoemulsions tend to settle due to high specific weight of PFC oils (1.5–2.0 g/mL. This in turn can decrease efficacy of excess nanoemulsion removal and reliability of the cell labeling in vitro. To solve this problem, novel PFC nanoemulsions are reported which demonstrate lack of sedimentation and high stability under cell labeling conditions. They are monodisperse, have small droplet size (~130 nm and low polydispersity (<0.15, show a single peak in the 19F nuclear magnetic resonance spectrum at −71.4 ppm and possess high fluorine content. The droplet size and polydispersity remained unchanged after 160 days of follow up at three temperatures (4, 25 and 37 °C. Further, stressors such as elevated temperature in the presence of cells, and centrifugation, did not affect the nanoemulsion droplet size and polydispersity. Detailed synthetic methodology and in vitro testing for these new PFC nanoemulsions is presented.

  13. Miro1 Enhances Mitochondria Transfer from Multipotent Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MMSC to Neural Cells and Improves the Efficacy of Cell Recovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina A. Babenko

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available A recently discovered key role of reactive oxygen species (ROS in mitochondrial traffic has opened a wide alley for studying the interactions between cells, including stem cells. Since its discovery in 2006, intercellular mitochondria transport has been intensively studied in different cellular models as a basis for cell therapy, since the potential of replacing malfunctioning organelles appears to be very promising. In this study, we explored the transfer of mitochondria from multipotent mesenchymal stem cells (MMSC to neural cells and analyzed its efficacy under normal conditions and upon induction of mitochondrial damage. We found that mitochondria were transferred from the MMSC to astrocytes in a more efficient manner when the astrocytes were exposed to ischemic damage associated with elevated ROS levels. Such transport of mitochondria restored the bioenergetics of the recipient cells and stimulated their proliferation. The introduction of MMSC with overexpressed Miro1 in animals that had undergone an experimental stroke led to significantly improved recovery of neurological functions. Our data suggest that mitochondrial impairment in differentiated cells can be compensated by receiving healthy mitochondria from MMSC. We demonstrate a key role of Miro1, which promotes the mitochondrial transfer from MMSC and suggest that the genetic modification of stem cells can improve the therapies for the injured brain.

  14. Bone marrow-derived cells for cardiovascular cell therapy: an optimized GMP method based on low-density gradient improves cell purity and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radrizzani, Marina; Lo Cicero, Viviana; Soncin, Sabrina; Bolis, Sara; Sürder, Daniel; Torre, Tiziano; Siclari, Francesco; Moccetti, Tiziano; Vassalli, Giuseppe; Turchetto, Lucia

    2014-09-27

    Cardiovascular cell therapy represents a promising field, with several approaches currently being tested. The advanced therapy medicinal product (ATMP) for the ongoing METHOD clinical study ("Bone marrow derived cell therapy in the stable phase of chronic ischemic heart disease") consists of fresh mononuclear cells (MNC) isolated from autologous bone marrow (BM) through density gradient centrifugation on standard Ficoll-Paque. Cells are tested for safety (sterility, endotoxin), identity/potency (cell count, CD45/CD34/CD133, viability) and purity (contaminant granulocytes and platelets). BM-MNC were isolated by density gradient centrifugation on Ficoll-Paque. The following process parameters were optimized throughout the study: gradient medium density; gradient centrifugation speed and duration; washing conditions. A new manufacturing method was set up, based on gradient centrifugation on low density Ficoll-Paque, followed by 2 washing steps, of which the second one at low speed. It led to significantly higher removal of contaminant granulocytes and platelets, improving product purity; the frequencies of CD34+ cells, CD133+ cells and functional hematopoietic and mesenchymal precursors were significantly increased. The methodological optimization described here resulted in a significant improvement of ATMP quality, a crucial issue to clinical applications in cardiovascular cell therapy.

  15. Dual Effect of Aerobic Exercise and GnRH Agonists at the Same Time, on Estradiol Serum LevelsandGonadotropins (LH,LH/FSH in Girls with Central Precocious Puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ali heidarianpoor

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Precocious pubertyin girls refers to onset of puberty before age 8. The purpose of this study therefore was the study of the effect of aerobic training and the use of GnRH agonists on estradiol serum levelsand Gonadotropins in girls with central precocious puberty. Methods: Twenty-five girls with central precocious puberty (aged 7.44±0.34 years participated in this study. Subjects randomly were divided in to the healthy control group ( Without precocious puberty (n=10 and three experimental groups (drug group n=10 aerobic exercise and( drug groups n=8 and aerobic exercise group (n=7. In the experimental group, aerobic program prolonged for 12 weeks 3 days a week 20-60 min  a day with 40-80% of Maximum heart rate and additionally GnRH agonists was used as medicine . The estradiol serum levelsand Gonadotropins were measured before, after, and after a follow-up program, respectively. BMI of subjects was measured to assess the effect of the aerobic exercises. Results: Data analysis showed that the aerobic training led to decreased significantly estradiol serum levelsand Gonadotropins in the experimental group (aerobic exercise and aerobic exercise+ drug groups (P≤0/05 The control group had no significant change in the index. BMI had no significant change in the drug group (P=0/06. Conclusions: Considering to the results of this study it could demonstrate that aerobic training and GnRH agonists at the same time can lead to decrease the estradiol serum level sandimprove the Gonadotropins in precocious puberty girls. Aerobic training can also decrease the BMI in girls with central precocious puberty.

  16. System for adding sulfur to a fuel cell stack system for improved fuel cell stability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mukerjee, Subhasish [Pittsford, NY; Haltiner, Jr., Karl J; Weissman, Jeffrey G [West Henrietta, NY

    2012-03-06

    A system for adding sulfur to a fuel cell stack, having a reformer adapted to reform a hydrocarbon fuel stream containing sulfur contaminants, thereby providing a reformate stream having sulfur; a sulfur trap fluidly coupled downstream of the reformer for removing sulfur from the reformate stream, thereby providing a desulfurized reformate stream; and a metering device in fluid communication with the reformate stream upstream of the sulfur trap and with the desulfurized reformate stream downstream of the sulfur trap. The metering device is adapted to bypass a portion of the reformate stream to mix with the desulfurized reformate stream, thereby producing a conditioned reformate stream having a predetermined sulfur concentration that gives an acceptable balance of minimal drop in initial power with the desired maximum stability of operation over prolonged periods for the fuel cell stack.

  17. PTEN overexpression improves cisplatin-resistance of human ovarian cancer cells through upregulating KRT10 expression

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wu, Huijuan; Wang, Ke; Liu, Wenxin; Hao, Quan, E-mail: quan_haotj@126.com

    2014-02-07

    Highlights: • Overexpression of PTEN enhanced the sensitivity of C13K cells to cisplatin. • KRT10 is a downstream molecule of PTEN involved in the resistance-reversing effect. • Overexpression of KRT10 enhanced the chemosensitivity of C13K cells to cisplatin. - Abstract: Multi-drug resistance (MDR) is a common cause of the failure of chemotherapy in ovarian cancer. PTEN, a tumor suppressor gene, has been demonstrated to be able to reverse cisplatin-resistance in ovarian cancer cell line C13K. However, the downstream molecules of PTEN involved in the resistance-reversing effect have not been completely clarified. Therefore, we screened the downstream molecules of PTEN and studied their interactions in C13K ovarian cancer cells using a 3D culture model. Firstly, we constructed an ovarian cancer cell line stably expressing PTEN, C13K/PTEN. MTT assay showed that overexpression of PTEN enhanced the sensitivity of C13K cells to cisplatin, but not to paclitaxel. Then we examined the differently expressed proteins that interacted with PTEN in C13K/PTEN cells with or without cisplatin treatment by co-immunoprecipitation. KRT10 was identified as a differently expressed protein in cisplatin-treated C13K/PTEN cells. Further study confirmed that cisplatin could induce upregulation of KRT10 mRNA and protein in C13K/PTEN cells and there was a directly interaction between KRT10 and PTEN. Forced expression of KRT10 in C13K cells also enhanced cisplatin-induced proliferation inhibition and apoptosis of C13K cells. In addition, KRT10 siRNA blocked cisplatin-induced proliferation inhibition of C13K/PTEN cells. In conclusion, our data demonstrate that KRT10 is a downstream molecule of PTEN which improves cisplatin-resistance of ovarian cancer and forced KRT10 overexpression may also act as a therapeutic method for overcoming MDR in ovarian cancer.

  18. PTEN overexpression improves cisplatin-resistance of human ovarian cancer cells through upregulating KRT10 expression

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wu, Huijuan; Wang, Ke; Liu, Wenxin; Hao, Quan

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Overexpression of PTEN enhanced the sensitivity of C13K cells to cisplatin. • KRT10 is a downstream molecule of PTEN involved in the resistance-reversing effect. • Overexpression of KRT10 enhanced the chemosensitivity of C13K cells to cisplatin. - Abstract: Multi-drug resistance (MDR) is a common cause of the failure of chemotherapy in ovarian cancer. PTEN, a tumor suppressor gene, has been demonstrated to be able to reverse cisplatin-resistance in ovarian cancer cell line C13K. However, the downstream molecules of PTEN involved in the resistance-reversing effect have not been completely clarified. Therefore, we screened the downstream molecules of PTEN and studied their interactions in C13K ovarian cancer cells using a 3D culture model. Firstly, we constructed an ovarian cancer cell line stably expressing PTEN, C13K/PTEN. MTT assay showed that overexpression of PTEN enhanced the sensitivity of C13K cells to cisplatin, but not to paclitaxel. Then we examined the differently expressed proteins that interacted with PTEN in C13K/PTEN cells with or without cisplatin treatment by co-immunoprecipitation. KRT10 was identified as a differently expressed protein in cisplatin-treated C13K/PTEN cells. Further study confirmed that cisplatin could induce upregulation of KRT10 mRNA and protein in C13K/PTEN cells and there was a directly interaction between KRT10 and PTEN. Forced expression of KRT10 in C13K cells also enhanced cisplatin-induced proliferation inhibition and apoptosis of C13K cells. In addition, KRT10 siRNA blocked cisplatin-induced proliferation inhibition of C13K/PTEN cells. In conclusion, our data demonstrate that KRT10 is a downstream molecule of PTEN which improves cisplatin-resistance of ovarian cancer and forced KRT10 overexpression may also act as a therapeutic method for overcoming MDR in ovarian cancer

  19. The ROCK inhibitor Y-27632 improves recovery of human embryonic stem cells after fluorescence-activated cell sorting with multiple cell surface markers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nil Emre

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Due to the inherent sensitivity of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs to manipulations, the recovery and survival of hESCs after fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS can be low. Additionally, a well characterized and robust methodology for performing FACS on hESCs using multiple-cell surface markers has not been described. The p160-Rho-associated coiled kinase (ROCK inhibitor, Y-27632, previously has been identified as enhancing survival of hESCs upon single-cell dissociation, as well as enhancing recovery from cryopreservation. Here we examined the application of Y-27632 to hESCs after FACS to improve survival in both feeder-dependent and feeder-independent growth conditions. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: HESCs were sorted using markers for SSEA-3, TRA-1-81, and SSEA-1. Cells were plated after sorting for 24 hours in either the presence or the absence of Y-27632. In both feeder-dependent and feeder-independent conditions, cell survival was greater when Y-27632 was applied to the hESCs after sort. Specifically, treatment of cells with Y-27632 improved post-sort recovery up to four fold. To determine the long-term effects of sorting with and without the application of Y-27632, hESCs were further analyzed. Specifically, hESCs sorted with and without the addition of Y-27632 retained normal morphology, expressed hESC-specific markers as measured by immunocytochemistry and flow cytometry, and maintained a stable karyotype. In addition, the hESCs could differentiate into three germ layers in vitro and in vivo in both feeder-dependent and feeder-independent growth conditions. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The application of Y-27632 to hESCs after cell sorting improves cell recovery with no observed effect on pluripotency, and enables the consistent recovery of hESCs by FACS using multiple surface markers. This improved methodology for cell sorting of hESCs will aid many applications such as removal of hESCs from secondary cell types

  20. Multivalent binding and biomimetic cell rolling improves the sensitivity and specificity of circulating tumor cell capture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myung, Ja Hye; Eblan, Michael J; Caster, Joseph M; Park, Sinjung; Poellmann, Michael J; Wang, Kyle; Tepper, Joel E; Tam, Kevin A; Miller, Seth M; Shen, Colette; Chen, Ronald C; Zhang, Tian; Chera, Bhishamjit; Wang, Andrew Z; Hong, Seungpyo

    2018-03-15

    We aimed to examine the effects of multivalent binding and biomimetic cell rolling on the sensitivity and specificity of circulating tumor cell (CTC) capture. We also investigated the clinical significance of CTCs and their kinetic profiles in cancer patients undergoing radiotherapy (RT) treatment. Patients with histologically confirmed primary carcinoma undergoing RT, with or without chemotherapy, were eligible for enrollment. Peripheral blood was collected prospectively at up to 5 time points, including prior to RT, at the first week, mid-point and final week of treatment, as well as 4 to 12 weeks after completion of RT. CTC capture was accomplished using a nanotechnology-based assay (CapioCyte) functionalized with aEpCAM, aHER-2, and aEGFR. CapioCyte was able to detect CTCs in all 24 cancer patients enrolled. Multivalent binding via poly(amidoamine) dendrimers further improved capture sensitivity. We also showed that cell rolling effect can improve CTC capture specificity (% of captured cells that are CK+/CD45-/DAPI+) up to 38%. Among the 18 patients with sequential CTC measurements, the median CTC decreased from 113 CTCs/mL before RT to 32 CTCs/mL at completion of RT (p = 0.001). CTCs declined throughout RT in patients with complete clinical and/or radiographic response, in contrast to an elevation in CTCs at mid or post-RT in the 2 patients with known pathologic residual disease. Our study demonstrated that multivalent binding and cell rolling can improve the sensitivity and specificity of CTC capture compared to multivalent binding alone, allowing reliable monitoring of CTC changes during and after treatment. Copyright ©2018, American Association for Cancer Research.

  1. Cognitive, emotional and psychosocial functioning of girls treated with pharmacological puberty blockage for idiopathic central precocious puberty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Slawomir Wojniusz

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Central precocious puberty (CPP develops due to premature activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG axis, resulting in early pubertal changes and rapid bone maturation. CPP is associated with lower adult height and increased risk for development of psychological problems. Standard treatment of CPP is based on postponement of pubertal development by blockade of the HPG axis with gonadotropin releasing hormone analogs (GnRHa leading to abolition of gonadal sex hormones synthesis. Whereas the hormonal and auxological effects of GnRHa are well researched, there is a lack of knowledge whether GnRHa treatment influences psychological functioning of treated children, despite the fact that prevention of psychological problems is used as one of the main reasons for treatment initiation. In the present study we seek to address this issue by exploring differences in cognitive function, behavior, emotional reactivity, and psychosocial problems between GnRHa treated CPP girls and age-matched controls.Fifteen girls with idiopathic CPP; median age 10.4 years, treated with slow-release GnRHa (triptorelin acetate – Decapeptyl SR ® 11.25 and 15 age-matched controls, were assessed with a comprehensive test battery consisting of paper and pencil tests, computerized tasks, behavioral paradigms, heart rate variability, and questionnaires filled in by the children’s parents. Both groups showed very similar scores with regard to cognitive performance, behavioral and psychosocial problems. Compared to controls, treated girls displayed significantly higher emotional reactivity (p = 0.016; Cohen’s d = 1.04 on one of the two emotional reactivity task conditions. Unexpectedly, the CPP group showed significantly lower resting heart rates than the controls (p = 0.004; Cohen’s d = 1.03; lower heart rate was associated with longer treatment duration (r = - 0.582, p = 0.037. The results suggest that GnRHa treated CPP girls do not differ in their cognitive or

  2. Use of a small molecule cell cycle inhibitor to control cell growth and improve specific productivity and product quality of recombinant proteins in CHO cell cultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Zhimei; Treiber, David; McCarter, John D; Fomina-Yadlin, Dina; Saleem, Ramsey A; McCoy, Rebecca E; Zhang, Yuling; Tharmalingam, Tharmala; Leith, Matthew; Follstad, Brian D; Dell, Brad; Grisim, Brent; Zupke, Craig; Heath, Carole; Morris, Arvia E; Reddy, Pranhitha

    2015-01-01

    The continued need to improve therapeutic recombinant protein productivity has led to ongoing assessment of appropriate strategies in the biopharmaceutical industry to establish robust processes with optimized critical variables, that is, viable cell density (VCD) and specific productivity (product per cell, qP). Even though high VCD is a positive factor for titer, uncontrolled proliferation beyond a certain cell mass is also undesirable. To enable efficient process development to achieve consistent and predictable growth arrest while maintaining VCD, as well as improving qP, without negative impacts on product quality from clone to clone, we identified an approach that directly targets the cell cycle G1-checkpoint by selectively inhibiting the function of cyclin dependent kinases (CDK) 4/6 with a small molecule compound. Results from studies on multiple recombinant Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cell lines demonstrate that the selective inhibitor can mediate a complete and sustained G0/G1 arrest without impacting G2/M phase. Cell proliferation is consistently and rapidly controlled in all recombinant cell lines at one concentration of this inhibitor throughout the production processes with specific productivities increased up to 110 pg/cell/day. Additionally, the product quality attributes of the mAb, with regard to high molecular weight (HMW) and glycan profile, are not negatively impacted. In fact, high mannose is decreased after treatment, which is in contrast to other established growth control methods such as reducing culture temperature. Microarray analysis showed major differences in expression of regulatory genes of the glycosylation and cell cycle signaling pathways between these different growth control methods. Overall, our observations showed that cell cycle arrest by directly targeting CDK4/6 using selective inhibitor compound can be utilized consistently and rapidly to optimize process parameters, such as cell growth, qP, and glycosylation profile in

  3. Combined strategy of endothelial cells coating, Sertoli cells coculture and infusion improves vascularization and rejection protection of islet graft.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Li

    Full Text Available Improving islet graft revascularization and inhibiting rejection become crucial tasks for prolonging islet graft survival. Endothelial cells (ECs are the basis of islet vascularization and Sertoli cells (SCs have the talent to provide nutritional support and exert immunosuppressive effects. We construct a combined strategy of ECs coating in the presence of nutritious and immune factors supplied by SCs in a co-culture system to investigate the effect of vascularization and rejection inhibition for islet graft. In vivo, the combined strategy improved the survival and vascularization as well as inhibited lymphocytes and inflammatory cytokines. In vitro, we found the combinatorial strategy improved the function of islets and the effect of ECs-coating on islets. Combined strategy treated islets revealed higher levels of anti-apoptotic signal molecules (Bcl-2 and HSP-32, survival and function related molecules (PDX-1, Ki-67, ERK1/2 and Akt and demonstrated increased vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2 (KDR and angiogenesis signal molecules (FAk and PLC-γ. SCs effectively inhibited the activation of lymphocyte stimulated by islets and ECs. Predominantly immunosuppressive cytokines could be detected in culture supernatants of the SCs coculture group. These results suggest that ECs-coating and Sertoli cells co-culture or infusion synergistically enhance islet survival and function after transplantation.

  4. Repression of COUP-TFI Improves Bone Marrow-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cell Differentiation into Insulin-Producing Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tao Zhang

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Identifying molecular mechanisms that regulate insulin expression in bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (bmMSCs can provide clues on how to stimulate the differentiation of bmMSCs into insulin-producing cells (IPCs, which can be used as a therapeutic approach against type 1 diabetes (T1D. As repression factors may inhibit differentiation, the efficiency of this process is insufficient for cell transplantation. In this study, we used the mouse insulin 2 (Ins2 promoter sequence and performed a DNA affinity precipitation assay combined with liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry to identify the transcription factor, chicken ovalbumin upstream promoter transcriptional factor I (COUP-TFI. Functionally, bmMSCs were reprogrammed into IPCs via COUP-TFI suppression and MafA overexpression. The differentiated cells expressed higher levels of genes specific for islet endocrine cells, and they released C-peptide and insulin in response to glucose stimulation. Transplantation of IPCs into streptozotocin-induced diabetic mice caused a reduction in hyperglycemia. Mechanistically, COUP-TFI bound to the DR1 (direct repeats with 1 spacer element in the Ins2 promoter, thereby negatively regulating promoter activity. Taken together, the data provide a novel mechanism by which COUP-TFI acts as a negative regulator in the Ins2 promoter. The differentiation of bmMSCs into IPCs could be improved by knockdown of COUP-TFI, which may provide a novel stem cell-based therapy for T1D. Keywords: siRNAs, differentiation, stem cell transplantation, diabetes, mesenchymal stem cells

  5. Transplantation of erythropoietin gene-modified neural stem cells improves the repair of injured spinal cord

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min-fei Wu

    2015-01-01

    cells into the subarachnoid cavity to help repair spinal cord injury and promote the recovery of spinal cord function better than neural stem cell transplantation alone. These findings may lead to significant improvements in the clinical treatment of spinal cord injuries.

  6. Computational assessment of improved cell-kill by gadolinium-supplemented boron neutron capture therapy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culbertson, Christopher N.; Jevremovic, Tatjana

    2003-12-01

    Potential improvement in neutron capture therapy (NCT) by utilizing both 157Gd and 10B is assessed considering two parameters calculated in transport models in MCNP4B, the dose to quiescent cells and the therapeutic ratio. Improved sterilization of quiescent or more generally non-uptaking cells is demonstrated with the addition of 157Gd to conventional 10B loading. The improved dose delivery to non-uptaking cells from concurrent administration of 157Gd and 10B is weighed against a second index, degradation in the therapeutic ratio resulting from the longer interaction lengths of the 157Gd capture products. Optimal concentrations of 157Gd are determined considering varying assumptions for boron uptake levels and selectivity. By analysing the dosimetry results of varying 157Gd concentrations applied concurrently with BPA-delivered boron in NCT, this work seeks to determine a balance between the high tumour-specific dose provided by BPA and the high dose to quiescent cells provided by potential gadolinium agents. Depending upon the assumptions for drug specificity, tumour size and fraction of quiescent cells, NCT with low levels of 157Gd (125 µg g-1) supplementing 10B loadings was shown to be superior to treatments applying 10B alone.

  7. Improvement of white matter changes on neuroimaging modalities after stem cell transplant in metachromatic leukodystrophy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Egmond, Martje E.; Pouwels, Petra J. W.; Boelens, Jaap-Jan; Lindemans, Caroline A.; Barkhof, Frederik; Steenwijk, Martijn D.; van Hasselt, Peter M.; van der Knaap, Marjo S.; Wolf, Nicole I.

    2013-01-01

    We sought to illustrate improvement of cerebral white matter changes in metachromatic leukodystrophy after treatment with hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT). We conducted serial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS) as standard follow-up after

  8. Polymer materials for roll coated solar cells: strategies tom improve performance and stability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heckler, Ilona Maria

    with stabilizing side chains, 2‐phenetyl and 2‐ethanol, respectively, to influence especially the device stability but also the performance. For most modifications a decrease of the solar cell efficiency was observed. The incorporation of 10% of these side chains show improvements of the stability of devices...

  9. Improved quality of optical coherence tomography imaging of basal cell carcinomas using speckle reduction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mogensen, Mette; Jørgensen, Thomas Martini; Thrane, Lars

    2010-01-01

    suggests a method for improving OCT image quality for skin cancer imaging. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: OCT is an optical imaging method analogous to ultrasound. Two basal cell carcinomas (BCC) were imaged using an OCT speckle reduction technique (SR-OCT) based on repeated scanning by altering the distance between...

  10. Solid oxide fuel cell systems with hot zones having improved reactant distribution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Poshusta, Joseph C.; Booten, Charles W.; Martin, Jerry L.

    2016-05-17

    A Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) system having a hot zone with a center cathode air feed tube for improved reactant distribution, a CPOX reactor attached at the anode feed end of the hot zone with a tail gas combustor at the opposing end for more uniform heat distribution, and a counter-flow heat exchanger for efficient heat retention.

  11. Improved isolation protocol for equine cord blood-derived mesenchymal stromal cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Koch, Thomas Gadegaard; Thomsen, Preben Dybdahl; Betts, Dean H.

    2009-01-01

      BACKGROUND AIMS: A robust methodology for the isolation of cord blood-derived multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells (CB-MSCs) from fresh umbilical cord blood has not been reported in any species. The objective of this study was to improve the isolation procedure for equine CB-MSCs. METHODS: Pre...

  12. Surface modification of hydrophobic polymers for improvement of endothelial cell-surface interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dekker, A.; Dekker, A.; Reitsma, K.; Beugeling, T.; Beugeling, T.; Bantjes, A.; Bantjes, A.; Feijen, Jan; Kirkpatrick, C.J.; van Aken, W.G.

    1992-01-01

    The aim of this study is to improve the interaction of endothelial cells with polymers used in vascular prostheses. Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE; Teflon) films were treated by means of nitrogen and oxygen plasmas. Depending on the plasma exposure time, modified PTFE surfaces showed water-contact

  13. Closed-Cell Aluminum Foam of Improved Sound Absorption Ability: Manufacture and Properties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra Byakova

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents a new method for the production of the closed-cell Al foams of improved sound absorbing ability. Final heat treatment procedure including heating below the solidus temperature followed by water quenching is proposed as an alternative method to machining, which is used commonly for improvement of the sound absorption coefficient. Several kinds of foams based on AlZnMg-alloys comprising brittle eutectic domains of interdendritic redundant phase have been produced by the Alporas-like melting process to realize the method above. Opening of the closed cell structure required for ensuring high sound absorption ability has been achieved by cracking the walls between neighboring cells, making them gas permeable. They ultimately looked like Helmholtz micro-perforated resonators. Processing parameters and other variables that are favorable both for foaming regime and for final heat treatment are discussed and specified.

  14. Improving the efficacy and safety of engineered T cell therapy for cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Huan; Liu, Lin; Wang, Zhehai

    2013-01-28

    Adoptive T-cell therapy (ACT) using tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) is a powerful immunotherapeutics approach against metastatic melanoma. The success of TIL therapy has led to novel strategies for redirecting normal T cells to recognize tumor-associated antigens (TAAs) by genetically engineering tumor antigen-specific T cell receptors (TCRs) or chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) genes. In this manner, large numbers of antigen-specific T cells can be rapidly generated compared with the longer term expansion of TILs. Great efforts have been made to improve these approaches. Initial clinical studies have demonstrated that genetically engineered T cells can mediate tumor regression in vivo. In this review, we discuss the development of TCR and CAR gene-engineered T cells and the safety concerns surrounding the use of these T cells in patients. We highlight the importance of judicious selection of TAAs for modified T cell therapy and propose solutions for potential "on-target, off-organ" toxicity. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. An improved model for nucleation-limited ice formation in living cells during freezing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jingru Yi

    Full Text Available Ice formation in living cells is a lethal event during freezing and its characterization is important to the development of optimal protocols for not only cryopreservation but also cryotherapy applications. Although the model for probability of ice formation (PIF in cells developed by Toner et al. has been widely used to predict nucleation-limited intracellular ice formation (IIF, our data of freezing Hela cells suggest that this model could give misleading prediction of PIF when the maximum PIF in cells during freezing is less than 1 (PIF ranges from 0 to 1. We introduce a new model to overcome this problem by incorporating a critical cell volume to modify the Toner's original model. We further reveal that this critical cell volume is dependent on the mechanisms of ice nucleation in cells during freezing, i.e., surface-catalyzed nucleation (SCN and volume-catalyzed nucleation (VCN. Taken together, the improved PIF model may be valuable for better understanding of the mechanisms of ice nucleation in cells during freezing and more accurate prediction of PIF for cryopreservation and cryotherapy applications.

  16. Novel Application of Artificial Dermis Plus Autologous Vital Epithelial Cells: Improved Wound Epithelialization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li-Tzu Lee

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to evaluate artificial dermis with the simultaneous addition of autologous epithelial cells for oral lesion defect reconstruction. Surgical wounds reconstructed with artificial dermis plus scraped epithelial cells were evaluated in 5 patients with oral benign lesions or squamous cell carcinoma. Clinical follow-up indices included scar formation and tissue surface texture observation. The neomucosal layers were analyzed histologically to establish the degree of epithelialization. Clinical observation showed that the oral mucosal texture was smoother in artificial dermis with added epithelial cells at 4 weeks postoperation compared with artificial dermis alone. The wound contraction and scar formation processes were slow. Viable epithelial cells with flat rete ridges remained in the artificial dermis, and a neoepithelial layer was present in the histological findings. We showed that healthy granulation tissue and neoepithelial formation in artificial dermis with epithelial cells was beneficial for the repair of oral defects. Scraping oral epithelial cells and applying them to artificial dermis assisted in the early preparation of composite grafts and minimized requirement for donor sites. This technique may improve the treatment of patients with oral benign tumors and early-stage squamous cell carcinoma.

  17. [Effects of obesity on peak level of luteinizing hormone in gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist test and obesity-related hormones in girls with central precocious puberty].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Xue-Lian; Fu, Jun-Fen; Jin, Ju-Hua; Dong, Guan-Ping; Jiang, You-Jun; Huang, Ke; Chen, Xue-Feng; Wu, Wei

    2015-08-01

    To explore the effects of obesity on the peak level of luteinizing hormone (LH) in the gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist test and obesity-related hormones in girls with central precocious puberty (CPP). Three hundred and thirty-three girls with CPP who underwent the GnRH agonist test between 2012 and 2014 were classified into three groups: normal weight (n=123), overweight (n=108), and obesity (n=102), according to body mass index (BMI). The sexual development indices were compared between the three groups. Twenty girls were randomly selected from each group for evaluation of the serum levels of leptin, sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG), neurokinin B, and kisspeptin. The correlation of BMI with the levels of various hormones was assessed using Pearson correlation analysis. There was no significant difference in mean age at diagnosis between the three groups; however, the bone age was significantly higher in the overweight and obesity groups than in the normal weight group (Phormones should be taken into account in girls with precocious puberty.

  18. Characterization of patients diagnosed with central precocious puberty starting treatment with leuprolide acetate, at the Hospital Nacional de Ninos in the period January 2004 to December 2009

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Viquez Viquez, Natalia

    2013-01-01

    Clinical characteristics and laboratory and cabinet findings (hormone levels, bone age, pelvic ultrasound) were determined in a sample of 39 patients diagnosed with central precocious puberty (CPP) who started treatment with leuprolide acetate (LPA). The cross-sectional observational study was developed at the Hospital Nacional de Ninos 'Dr. Carlos Saenz Herrera' during the period 2004 and 2009. The chronological age of patients with CPP was specified at the time of diagnosis and to start treatment with LPA. Epidemiological characteristics (sex, origin) were described in patients with CPP. Bone age with respect to chronological age was identified in patients with CPP. Sexual maturity of patients with CPP was established by the Tanner scale. The hormone levels of estrogen, testosterone, luteinizing hormone and follicle stimulating hormone were specified in patients with CPP. The etiology was determined in patients with CPP treated with LPA. The adverse effects of treatment with LPA were described. Anthropometric measurements were detailed. The heredo-familial antecedents of precocious puberty were established in patients with diagnosis of CPP. The size of the pelvic organs was evaluated by pelvic ultrasound [es

  19. Significance of determination of female sex hormones (E2, LH, FSH), insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) and leptin in girls with precocious puberty

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huang Jianrong

    2004-01-01

    Objective: To investigate the diagnostic value of determination of serum levels of estradiol (E 2 ), luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), insulin-like growth factor (IGF-I) and leptin in girls with idiopathic central precocious puberty (ICPP). Methods: Serum E 2 , LH, FSH, IGF-I (with chemiluminescence immunoassay) and leptin (with RIA) levels were determined in 35 girls with early development of breast as the sign of precocious puberty, of which, 15 was considered to be of the ICPP group and 20 of simple premature thelarche group (SPT). Criteria of diagnosis for ICPP were: peak LH value>12IU/L and LH/FSH>1 after GnRH stimulating test. Results: Serum E 2 , LH, FSH, IGF-I leptin levels in girls with ICPP were significantly higher than those in the girls with SPT (P 0.2 as the cut-off value for diagnosis of ICPP there would still be a positive rate of 86.6% suggesting that the diagnostic criteria might be set lower. Serum IGF-I levels were positively correlated to those of E 2 (r=0.47, P 2 and IGF-I. Conclusion: Determinations of serum E 2 , LH, FHS, IGF-I and leptin levels were helpful for the early diagnosis of ICPP. (author)

  20. Improving cell mixture deconvolution by identifying optimal DNA methylation libraries (IDOL).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koestler, Devin C; Jones, Meaghan J; Usset, Joseph; Christensen, Brock C; Butler, Rondi A; Kobor, Michael S; Wiencke, John K; Kelsey, Karl T

    2016-03-08

    Confounding due to cellular heterogeneity represents one of the foremost challenges currently facing Epigenome-Wide Association Studies (EWAS). Statistical methods leveraging the tissue-specificity of DNA methylation for deconvoluting the cellular mixture of heterogenous biospecimens offer a promising solution, however the performance of such methods depends entirely on the library of methylation markers being used for deconvolution. Here, we introduce a novel algorithm for Identifying Optimal Libraries (IDOL) that dynamically scans a candidate set of cell-specific methylation markers to find libraries that optimize the accuracy of cell fraction estimates obtained from cell mixture deconvolution. Application of IDOL to training set consisting of samples with both whole-blood DNA methylation data (Illumina HumanMethylation450 BeadArray (HM450)) and flow cytometry measurements of cell composition revealed an optimized library comprised of 300 CpG sites. When compared existing libraries, the library identified by IDOL demonstrated significantly better overall discrimination of the entire immune cell landscape (p = 0.038), and resulted in improved discrimination of 14 out of the 15 pairs of leukocyte subtypes. Estimates of cell composition across the samples in the training set using the IDOL library were highly correlated with their respective flow cytometry measurements, with all cell-specific R (2)>0.99 and root mean square errors (RMSEs) ranging from [0.97 % to 1.33 %] across leukocyte subtypes. Independent validation of the optimized IDOL library using two additional HM450 data sets showed similarly strong prediction performance, with all cell-specific R (2)>0.90 and R M S EIDOL library resulted in uniformly lower false positive rates compared to competing libraries, while also demonstrating an improved capacity to explain epigenome-wide variation in DNA methylation within two large publicly available HM450 data sets. Despite consisting of half as many Cp

  1. A Hyaluronan-Based Injectable Hydrogel Improves the Survival and Integration of Stem Cell Progeny following Transplantation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian G. Ballios

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The utility of stem cells and their progeny in adult transplantation models has been limited by poor survival and integration. We designed an injectable and bioresorbable hydrogel blend of hyaluronan and methylcellulose (HAMC and tested it with two cell types in two animal models, thereby gaining an understanding of its general applicability for enhanced cell distribution, survival, integration, and functional repair relative to conventional cell delivery in saline. HAMC improves cell survival and integration of retinal stem cell (RSC-derived rods in the retina. The pro-survival mechanism of HAMC is ascribed to the interaction of the CD44 receptor with HA. Transient disruption of the retinal outer limiting membrane, combined with HAMC delivery, results in significantly improved rod survival and visual function. HAMC also improves the distribution, viability, and functional repair of neural stem and progenitor cells (NSCs. The HAMC delivery system improves cell transplantation efficacy in two CNS models, suggesting broad applicability.

  2. Re-Cloning the N27 Dopamine Cell Line to Improve a Cell Culture Model of Parkinson's Disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lu Gao

    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease is characterized by the death of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra. To understand the molecular mechanisms of the disease, an in vitro model is important. In the 1990s, we used the SV40 large T antigen to immortalize dopaminergic neurons derived from Embryonic Day 14 rat mesencephalon. We selected a clone for its high expression of dopaminergic neuron markers such as tyrosine hydroxylase (TH, and we named it 1RB3AN27 (N27. Because the original N27 cell line has been passaged many times, the line has become a mixture of cell types with highly variable expression of TH. In the current study, we have performed multiple rounds of clonal cultures and have identified a dopaminergic cell clone expressing high levels of TH and the dopamine transporter (DAT. We have named this new clone N27-A. Nearly 100% of N27-A cells express TH, DAT and Tuj1. Western blots have confirmed that N27-A cells have three to four times the levels of TH and DAT compared to the previous mixed population in N27. Further analysis has shown that the new clone expresses the dopamine neuron transcription factors Nurr1, En1, FoxA2 and Pitx3. The N27-A cells express the vesicular monoamine transporter (VMAT2, but do not express dopamine-beta-hydroxylase (DβH, the enzyme responsible for converting dopamine to norepinephrine. Functional analysis has shown that N27-A cells are more sensitive than N27 cells to neurotoxins taken up by the dopamine transporter such as 6-hydroxydopamine and 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridine (MPP+. The DAT inhibitor nomifensine can block MPP+ induced toxicity. The non-selective toxic effects of hydrogen peroxide were similar in both cell lines. The N27-A cells show dopamine release under basal and depolarization conditions. We conclude that the new N27-A clone of the immortalized rat dopaminergic cell line N27 should provide an improved in vitro model for Parkinson's disease research.

  3. Improving the Efficiency of Organic Solar Cells upon Addition of Polyvinylpyridine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rita Rodrigues

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available We report on the efficiency improvement of organic solar cells (OPVs based on the low energy gap polyfluorene derivative, APFO-3, and the soluble C60 fullerene PCBM, upon addition of a residual amount of poly (4-vinylpyridine (PVP. We find that the addition of 1% by weight of PVP with respect to the APFO-3 content leads to an increase of efficiency from 2.4% to 2.9%. Modifications in the phase separation details of the active layer were investigated as a possible origin of the efficiency increase. At high concentrations of PVP, the blend morphology is radically altered as observed by Atomic Force Microscopy. Although the use of low molecular weight additives is a routine method to improve OPVs efficiency, this report shows that inert polymers, in terms of optical and charge transport properties, may also improve the performance of polymer-based solar cells.

  4. DOT1L inhibitor improves early development of porcine somatic cell nuclear transfer embryos

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tao, Jia; Zhang, Yu; Zuo, Xiaoyuan

    2017-01-01

    inhibitor EPZ004777 (EPZ), significantly improved reprogramming efficiency during the generation of mouse induced pluripotent stem cells. However, the roles of DOT1L in porcine nuclear transfer-mediated cellular reprogramming are not yet known. Here we showed that DOT1L inhibition via 0.5 nM EPZ treatment......Incomplete epigenetic reprogramming of the genome of donor cells causes poor early and full-term developmental efficiency of somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) embryos. Previous research indicate that inhibition of the histone H3 K79 methyltransferase DOT1L, using a selective pharmacological...... for 12 or 24 h significantly enhanced the blastocyst rate of SCNT embryos and dramatically reduced the level of H3K79me2 during SCNT 1-cell embryonic development. Additionally, H3K79me2 level in the EPZ-treated SCNT embryos was similar to that in in vitro fertilized embryos, suggesting that DOT1L...

  5. Does mesenchymal stem cell improve the liver regeneration after the 70% hepatectomy?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, Ana Karina Soares; Lanzoni, Valéria; Fuziy, Rogério Aoki; Franco, Rita Maria Aparecida Monteiro Moura; Maeda, Carlos Toshinori; Lopes, Gaspar de Jesus; Linhares, Marcelo Moura

    2017-07-01

    To evaluate the effects of mesenchymal stem cells on liver regeneration in rats following a 70% hepatectomy. Forty rats were subjected to 70% hepatectomy and then ~106 mesenchymal stem cells (test group), or saline solution (control group), were infused into their livers via the portal vein. Each treatment group was divided into early and late subgroups (euthanized 3 d and 5 d following the operation, respectively). Group comparisons of Albumin, aminotransaminases (AST, ALT), and Alcaline Phosphatase (AP) levels, proliferative index (ki-67+ straining), and mitotic cell counts were conducted. No significant differences in liver regeneration rate, number of mitoses, proliferative index, or serum levels of albumin, AST, or AP were observed. ALT levels were higher in the test group than in the control group (p<.05). Mesenchymal stem-cell therapy did not improve liver regeneration rate 3 d or 5 d after 70% hepatectomy in rats. Likewise, the therapy appeared not to affect liver function, proliferative index, or number of mitoses significantly.

  6. Branched dimerization of Tat peptide improves permeability to HeLa and hippocampal neuronal cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monreal, I Abrrey; Liu, Qian; Tyson, Katherine; Bland, Tyler; Dalisay, Doralyn S; Adams, Erin V; Wayman, Gary A; Aguilar, Hector C; Saludes, Jonel P

    2015-03-28

    A dimeric branched peptide TATp-D designed as an analogue of the HIV-Tat protein transduction domain (TATp), a prototypical cell penetrating peptide (CPP), demonstrates significantly enhanced cell uptake at 0.25 to 2.5 μM. Live cell confocal laser scanning microscopy revealed that multivalency dramatically improved the permeation potency of TATp-D to HeLa and primary hippocampal neuronal cells. The observed enhanced ability of TATp-D to translocate through the membrane is highlighted by a non-linear dependence on concentration, exhibiting the greatest uptake at sub-micromolar concentrations as compared to TATp. Multimerization via bis-Fmoc Lysine offered a synthetically straightforward method to investigate the effects of multivalent CPPs while offering orthogonal handles for cargo attachment, increasing the utility of CPPs at significantly lower concentrations.

  7. Precocious Puberty (For Parents)

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Teens Teens site Sitio para adolescentes Body Mind Sexual Health Food & Fitness Diseases & Conditions Infections Drugs & Alcohol School & Jobs Sports Expert ... Your Daughter About Puberty Understanding Early Sexual Development Sexual ... Disorder? Talking to Your Child About Puberty Understanding Puberty ...

  8. Ex Vivo Expansion of Hematopoietic Stem Cells to Improve Engraftment in Stem Cell Transplantation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ko, Kap-Hyoun; Nordon, Robert; O'Brien, Tracey A; Symonds, Geoff; Dolnikov, Alla

    2017-01-01

    The efficient use of hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) for transplantation is often limited by the relatively low numbers of HSC collected. The ex vivo expansion of HSC for clinical use is a potentially valuable and safe approach to increase HSC numbers thereby increasing engraftment and reducing the risk of morbidity from infection. Here, we describe a protocol for the robust ex vivo expansion of human CD34(+) HSC isolated from umbilical cord blood. The protocol described can efficiently generate large numbers of HSC. We also describe a flow cytometry-based method using high-resolution division tracking to characterize the kinetics of HSC growth and differentiation. Utilizing the guidelines discussed, it is possible for investigators to use this protocol as presented or to modify it for their specific needs.

  9. Cell Adhesion Selectivity of Stent Material to improve Bio-functionality by Ion Beam Modification

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, Jaesang; Park, JUngchan; Jung, Myunghwan; Kim, Yongki [Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, Daejeon (Korea, Republic of); Park, Junkyu [Bio alpha., Co. Ltd., Gimhae (Korea, Republic of)

    2014-05-15

    In this study, ion implantation into collagen coated Co-Cr alloy, which is a cheaper material of the artificial stent product comparing with Ti alloy, has been studied to develop small diameter artificial stent by the cell adhesion control. The size of stent was 1.6mm of the diameter and 18mm of the length. The life-time of artificial stent depends on adhesion property of endothelial-cells. We successfully controlled cell adhesion selectivity between endothelial cell and muscle cell by using collagen coated and He{sup +} ion beam irradiated Co-Cr-alloy to apply to artificial stent. But, we did not achieve the inhibition of platelet adhesion, yet by using collagen coating and He{sup +} ion beam irradiation. Based on this study, we have plan to research about separation between collagen coating effect and ion beam effect. Also, we will have more detail analysis of the mechanism of cell attachment. In recent years, ion implantation has been applied to the surface modification of prosthesis to improve blood compatibility and tissue compatibility in field of biomedical application. As well known, bio compatibility was concerned with the cell adhesion selectivity for bio-functionality. The biomedical application of ion beam technology would be used more widely in the future such as catheter and artificial graft.

  10. Disintegration of Nannochloropsis sp. cells in an improved turbine bead mill.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Zhidong; Huang, Ying; Wang, Yanmin; Wu, Zhiwei

    2017-12-01

    The Nannochloropsis sp. cells in aqueous solution were disintegrated in an improved bead mill with turbine agitator. The disintegration rates of cell samples disrupted under various operating parameters (i.e., circumferential speed, bead size, disintegration time, and cell concentration) were analyzed. An experimental strategy to optimize the parameters affecting the cell disintegration process was proposed. The results show that Nannochloropsis sp. cells can be effectively disintegrated in the turbine stirred bead mill under the optimum condition (i.e., circumferential speed of 2.3m/s, concentration of 15vol.%, disintegration time of 40min and bead size of 0.3-0.4mm). The disintegration mechanism was discussed via the selection and breakage functions from population balance modelling. It is revealed that the impact and compression effects of stirring beads are more effective for the disruption of coarser fraction of cells, and the shear effect dominates the production of finer fractions of disintegrated cells. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Improved Optics in Monolithic Perovskite/Silicon Tandem Solar Cells with a Nanocrystalline Silicon Recombination Junction

    KAUST Repository

    Sahli, Florent

    2017-10-09

    Perovskite/silicon tandem solar cells are increasingly recognized as promi­sing candidates for next-generation photovoltaics with performance beyond the single-junction limit at potentially low production costs. Current designs for monolithic tandems rely on transparent conductive oxides as an intermediate recombination layer, which lead to optical losses and reduced shunt resistance. An improved recombination junction based on nanocrystalline silicon layers to mitigate these losses is demonstrated. When employed in monolithic perovskite/silicon heterojunction tandem cells with a planar front side, this junction is found to increase the bottom cell photocurrent by more than 1 mA cm−2. In combination with a cesium-based perovskite top cell, this leads to tandem cell power-conversion efficiencies of up to 22.7% obtained from J–V measurements and steady-state efficiencies of up to 22.0% during maximum power point tracking. Thanks to its low lateral conductivity, the nanocrystalline silicon recombination junction enables upscaling of monolithic perovskite/silicon heterojunction tandem cells, resulting in a 12.96 cm2 monolithic tandem cell with a steady-state efficiency of 18%.

  12. Improving Efficiency of Multicrystalline Silicon and CIGS Solar Cells by Incorporating Metal Nanoparticles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming-Jer Jeng

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available This work studies the use of gold (Au and silver (Ag nanoparticles in multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si and copper-indium-gallium-diselenide (CIGS solar cells. Au and Ag nanoparticles are deposited by spin-coating method, which is a simple and low cost process. The random distribution of nanoparticles by spin coating broadens the resonance wavelength of the transmittance. This broadening favors solar cell applications. Metal shadowing competes with light scattering in a manner that varies with nanoparticle concentration. Experimental results reveal that the mc-Si solar cells that incorporate Au nanoparticles outperform those with Ag nanoparticles. The incorporation of suitable concentration of Au and Ag nanoparticles into mc-Si solar cells increases their efficiency enhancement by 5.6% and 4.8%, respectively. Incorporating Au and Ag nanoparticles into CIGS solar cells improve their efficiency enhancement by 1.2% and 1.4%, respectively. The enhancement of the photocurrent in mc-Si solar cells is lower than that in CIGS solar cells, owing to their different light scattering behaviors and material absorption coefficients.

  13. Improving dynamic performance of proton-exchange membrane fuel cell system using time delay control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Young-Bae

    Transient behaviour is a key parameter for the vehicular application of proton-exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell. The goal of this presentation is to construct better control technology to increase the dynamic performance of a PEM fuel cell. The PEM fuel cell model comprises a compressor, an injection pump, a humidifier, a cooler, inlet and outlet manifolds, and a membrane-electrode assembly. The model includes the dynamic states of current, voltage, relative humidity, stoichiometry of air and hydrogen, cathode and anode pressures, cathode and anode mass flow rates, and power. Anode recirculation is also included with the injection pump, as well as anode purging, for preventing anode flooding. A steady-state, isothermal analytical fuel cell model is constructed to analyze the mass transfer and water transportation in the membrane. In order to prevent the starvation of air and flooding in a PEM fuel cell, time delay control is suggested to regulate the optimum stoichiometry of oxygen and hydrogen, even when there are dynamical fluctuations of the required PEM fuel cell power. To prove the dynamical performance improvement of the present method, feed-forward control and Linear Quadratic Gaussian (LQG) control with a state estimator are compared. Matlab/Simulink simulation is performed to validate the proposed methodology to increase the dynamic performance of a PEM fuel cell system.

  14. Community effect triggers terminal differentiation of myogenic cells derived from muscle satellite cells by quenching Smad signaling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yanagisawa, Michiko [Department of Regenerative Medicine, National Institute for Longevity Sciences, National Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology, 35 Gengo, Morioka, Oobu, Aichi 474-8522 (Japan); Aging Research, Nagoya University Graduate School of Medicine, 65 Tsurumai-cho, Showa-ku, Nagoya, Aichi 466-8550 (Japan); Mukai, Atsushi; Shiomi, Kosuke [Department of Regenerative Medicine, National Institute for Longevity Sciences, National Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology, 35 Gengo, Morioka, Oobu, Aichi 474-8522 (Japan); Song, Si-Yong [Institute of Neuroscience, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at Kagawa, Tokushima Bunri University, 1314-1 Shido, Sanuki-shi, Kagawa 769-2193 (Japan); Hashimoto, Naohiro, E-mail: nao@ncgg.go.jp [Department of Regenerative Medicine, National Institute for Longevity Sciences, National Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology, 35 Gengo, Morioka, Oobu, Aichi 474-8522 (Japan)

    2011-01-15

    A high concentration of bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) stimulates myogenic progenitor cells to undergo heterotopic osteogenic differentiation. However, the physiological role of the Smad signaling pathway during terminal muscle differentiation has not been resolved. We report here that Smad1/5/8 was phosphorylated and activated in undifferentiated growing mouse myogenic progenitor Ric10 cells without exposure to any exogenous BMPs. The amount of phosphorylated Smad1/5/8 was severely reduced during precocious myogenic differentiation under the high cell density culture condition even in growth medium supplemented with a high concentration of serum. Inhibition of the Smad signaling pathway by dorsomorphin, an inhibitor of Smad activation, or noggin, a specific antagonist of BMP, induced precocious terminal differentiation of myogenic progenitor cells in a cell density-dependent fashion even in growth medium. In addition, Smad1/5/8 was transiently activated in proliferating myogenic progenitor cells during muscle regeneration in rats. The present results indicate that the Smad signaling pathway is involved in a critical switch between growth and differentiation of myogenic progenitor cells both in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, precocious cell density-dependent myogenic differentiation suggests that a community effect triggers the terminal muscle differentiation of myogenic cells by quenching the Smad signaling.

  15. Community effect triggers terminal differentiation of myogenic cells derived from muscle satellite cells by quenching Smad signaling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yanagisawa, Michiko; Mukai, Atsushi; Shiomi, Kosuke; Song, Si-Yong; Hashimoto, Naohiro

    2011-01-01

    A high concentration of bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) stimulates myogenic progenitor cells to undergo heterotopic osteogenic differentiation. However, the physiological role of the Smad signaling pathway during terminal muscle differentiation has not been resolved. We report here that Smad1/5/8 was phosphorylated and activated in undifferentiated growing mouse myogenic progenitor Ric10 cells without exposure to any exogenous BMPs. The amount of phosphorylated Smad1/5/8 was severely reduced during precocious myogenic differentiation under the high cell density culture condition even in growth medium supplemented with a high concentration of serum. Inhibition of the Smad signaling pathway by dorsomorphin, an inhibitor of Smad activation, or noggin, a specific antagonist of BMP, induced precocious terminal differentiation of myogenic progenitor cells in a cell density-dependent fashion even in growth medium. In addition, Smad1/5/8 was transiently activated in proliferating myogenic progenitor cells during muscle regeneration in rats. The present results indicate that the Smad signaling pathway is involved in a critical switch between growth and differentiation of myogenic progenitor cells both in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, precocious cell density-dependent myogenic differentiation suggests that a community effect triggers the terminal muscle differentiation of myogenic cells by quenching the Smad signaling.

  16. Laser Induced Forward Transfer for front contact improvement in silicon heterojunction solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Colina, M., E-mail: monicacolinb@gmail.com; Morales-Vilches, A.; Voz, C.; Martín, I.; Ortega, P.; Orpella, A.; López, G.; Alcubilla, R.

    2015-05-01

    Highlights: • LIFT technique is investigated to improve heterojunction HJ solar cells. • Doped silicon films are adequate precursors for LIFT application in HJ cells. • LIFT leads to a reduction of the series resistance of a-Si HJ diodes. • LIFT allows the improvement of the front contact resistance in a-Si HJ solar cells. - Abstract: In this work the Laser Induced Forward Transfer (LIFT) technique is investigated to create n-doped regions on p-type c-Si substrates. The precursor source of LIFT consisted in a phosphorous-doped hydrogenated amorphous silicon layer grown by Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition (PECVD) onto a transparent substrate. Transfer of the doping atoms occurs when a sequence of laser pulses impinging onto the doped layer propels the material toward the substrate. The laser irradiation not only transfers the doping material but also produces a local heating that promotes its diffusion into the substrate. The laser employed was a 1064 nm, lamp-pumped system, working at pulse durations of 100 and 400 ns. In order to obtain a good electrical performance a comprehensive optimization of the applied laser fluency and number of pulses was carried out. Subsequently, arrays of n + p local junctions were created by LIFT and the resulting J–V curves demonstrated the formation of good quality n+ regions. These structures were finally incorporated to enhance the front contact in conventional silicon heterojunction solar cells leading to an improvement of conversion efficiency.

  17. Natural Killer Cells Improve Hematopoietic Stem Cell Engraftment by Increasing Stem Cell Clonogenicity In Vitro and in a Humanized Mouse Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escobedo-Cousin, Michelle; Jackson, Nicola; Laza-Briviesca, Raquel; Ariza-McNaughton, Linda; Luevano, Martha; Derniame, Sophie; Querol, Sergio; Blundell, Michael; Thrasher, Adrian; Soria, Bernat; Cooper, Nichola; Bonnet, Dominique; Madrigal, Alejandro; Saudemont, Aurore

    2015-01-01

    Cord blood (CB) is increasingly used as a source of hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) for transplantation. Low incidence and severity of graft-versus-host disease (GvHD) and a robust graft-versus-leukemia (GvL) effect are observed following CB transplantation (CBT). However, its main disadvantages are a limited number of HSC per unit, delayed immune reconstitution and a higher incidence of infection. Unmanipulated grafts contain accessory cells that may facilitate HSC engraftment. Therefore, the effects of accessory cells, particularly natural killer (NK) cells, on human CB HSC (CBSC) functions were assessed in vitro and in vivo. CBSC cultured with autologous CB NK cells showed higher levels of CXCR4 expression, a higher migration index and a higher number of colony forming units (CFU) after short-term and long-term cultures. We found that CBSC secreted CXCL9 following interaction with CB NK cells. In addition, recombinant CXCL9 increased CBSC clonogenicity, recapitulating the effect observed of CB NK cells on CBSC. Moreover, the co-infusion of CBSC with CB NK cells led to a higher level of CBSC engraftment in NSG mouse model. The results presented in this work offer the basis for an alternative approach to enhance HSC engraftment that could improve the outcome of CBT.

  18. Improving photovoltaic performance of silicon solar cells using a combination of plasmonic and luminescent downshifting effects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, Wen-Jeng; Feng, Sheng-Kai; Liu, Jheng-Jie; Yang, Yun-Chie; Ho, Chun-Hung

    2018-05-01

    This paper reports on efforts to improve the photovoltaic performance of crystalline silicon solar cells by combining the plasmonic scattering of silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs) with the luminescent downshifting (LDS) effects of Eu-doped phosphors. The surface morphology was examined using a scanning electron microscope in conjunction with ImageJ software. Raman scattering and absorbance measurements were used to examine the surface plasmon resonance of Ag NPs of various dimensions in various dielectric environments. The fluorescence emission of the Eu-doped phosphors was characterized via photoluminescence measurements at room temperature. We examined the combination of plasmonic and LDS effects by measuring the optical reflectance and external quantum efficiency. Improvements in the photovoltaic performance of the solar cells were determined by photovoltaic current density-voltage under AM 1.5G illumination. A combination of plasmonic and LDS effects led to an impressive 26.17% improvement in efficiency, whereas plasmonic effects resulted in a 22.63% improvement compared to the cell with a SiO2 ARC of 17.33%.

  19. Thermal and mechanical improvement of aluminum open-cells foams through electrodeposition of copper and graphene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simoncini Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Thanks to its planar structure, graphene is characterized by unique properties, such as excellent chemical inactivity, high electrical and thermal conductivity, high optical transparency, extraordinary flexibility and high mechanical resistance, which make it suitable in a very wide range of applications. This paper details the state of the art in graphene coating applied to aluminum open-cells foams for the improvement of their mechanical and thermal behavior. Metallic foams are highly porous materials with extremely high convective heat transfer coefficients, thanks to their complex structure of three-dimensional open-cells. Graphene nanoplatelets have been used to improve thermal conductivity of aluminum foams, to make them better suitable during heat transfer in transient state. Also, an improvement of mechanical resistance has been observed. Before electrodeposition, all the samples have been subjected to sandblasting process, to eliminate the oxide layer on the surface, enabling a better adhesion of the coating. Different nanoparticles of graphene have been used. The experimental findings revealed a higher thermal conductivity for aluminum open cells foams electroplated with graphene. Considered the relatively low process costs and the improvements obtainable, these materials are very promising in many technological fields. The topics covered include surface modification, electrochemical plating, thermo-graphic analysis.

  20. Improvement of mammalian cell culture performance through surfactant enabled concentrated feed media.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hossler, Patrick; McDermott, Sean; Racicot, Christopher; Fann, John C H

    2013-01-01

    The design of basal and feed media in mammalian cell culture is paramount towards ensuring acceptable upstream process performance in various operation modes, especially fed-batch culture. Mammalian cell culture media designs have evolved from the classical formulations designed by Eagle and Ham, to today's formulations designed from continuous improvement and statistical frameworks. Feed media is especially important for ensuring robust cell growth, productivity, and ensuring the product quality of recombinant therapeutics are within acceptable ranges. Numerous studies have highlighted the benefit of various media designs, supplements, and feed addition strategies towards the resulting cell culture process. In this work we highlight the use of a top-down level approach towards feed media design enabled by the use of select surfactants for the targeted enrichment of a chemically defined feed media. The use of the enriched media was able to improve product titers at g/L levels, without adversely impacting the growth of multiple Chinese Hamster Ovary cell lines or the product quality of multiple recombinant antibodies. © 2013 American Institute of Chemical Engineers.

  1. Empagliflozin Treatment is Associated with Improved Beta Cell Function in T2DM.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al Jobori, Hussein; Daniele, Giuseppe; Adams, John; Cersosimo, Eugenio; Solis-Herrera, Carolina; Triplitt, Curtis; DeFronzo, Ralph A; Abdul-Ghani, Muhammad

    2018-01-12

    To examine whether lowering the plasma glucose concentration with empagliflozin (SGLT2 inhibitor) improves beta cell function in T2DM. 15 T2DM patients received empagliflozin (25 mg/day) for 2 weeks, and beta cell function was measured with 9-step hyperglycemic clamp (each step = +40 mg/dl) before and 48 hours and 14 days after empagliflozin. Empagliflozin caused 101±10 and 117±11 grams glucosuria on days 1 and 14 and produced 25±6 and 38±8 mg/dl reduction (pEmpagliflozin increased the incremental area under the plasma C-peptide concentration curve by 48±12% and 61±10% during the stepped hyperglycemic clamp performed 48 hours and 14 days, respectively (both p empagliflozin. Empagliflozin also caused an increase in the glucose infusion rate during the hyperglycemic clamp performed on days 3 and 14 compared to baseline by 15% and 16% (both pempagliflozin. Empagliflozin also enhanced beta cell glucose sensitivity during the hyperglycemic clamp by 42% and 54% after 48 hours and 14 days, respectively (both pempagliflozin in T2DM patients: (1) augments beta cell glucose sensitivity and (2) improves beta cell function (IS/IR index). Copyright © 2018 Endocrine Society

  2. Improving washing strategies of human mesenchymal stem cells using negative mode expanded bed chromatography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunha, Bárbara; Silva, Ricardo J S; Aguiar, Tiago; Serra, Margarida; Daicic, John; Maloisel, Jean-Luc; Clachan, John; Åkerblom, Anna; Carrondo, Manuel J T; Peixoto, Cristina; Alves, Paula M

    2016-01-15

    The use of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSC) in clinical applications has been increasing over the last decade. However, to be applied in a clinical setting hMSC need to comply with specific requirements in terms of identity, potency and purity. This study reports the improvement of established tangential flow filtration (TFF)-based washing strategies, further increasing hMSC purity, using negative mode expanded bed adsorption (EBA) chromatography with a new multimodal prototype matrix based on core-shell bead technology. The matrix was characterized and a stable, expanded bed could be obtained using standard equipment adapted from what is used for conventional packed bed chromatography processes. The effect of different expansion rates on cell recovery yield and protein removal capacity was assessed. The best trade-off between cell recovery (89%) and protein clearance (67%) was achieved using an intermediate expansion bed rate (1.4). Furthermore, we also showed that EBA chromatography can be efficiently integrated on the already established process for the downstream processing (DSP) of hMSC, where it improved the washing efficiency more than 10-fold, recovering approximately 70% of cells after global processing. This strategy showed not to impact cell viability (>95%), neither hMSC's characteristics in terms of morphology, immunophenotype, proliferation, adhesion capacity and multipotent differentiation potential. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Assessment of Th17/Treg cells and Th cytokines in an improved immune thrombocytopenia mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Guoyang; Zhang, Ping; Liu, Hongyun; Liu, Xiaoyan; Xie, Shuangfeng; Wang, Xiuju; Wu, Yudan; Chang, Jianxing; Ma, Liping

    2017-09-01

    The improved passive immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) mouse model has been extensively utilized for the study of ITP. However, how closely this model matches the human inflammation state and immune background is unclear. Our study aimed to explore the profile of Th cytokines and Th17/Treg cells in the model. We induced the ITP mouse model by dose-escalation injection of MWReg30. The serum levels of cytokines (IFN-γ, IL-2, IL-4, IL-10, IL-17A, and TGF-β1) were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and the frequency of Th17 and Treg cells was measured by flow cytometry. The mRNA expression of Foxp3 and RORrt was measured by real-time PCR. The serum levels of cytokines IFN-γ, TGF-β1, IL-4, and IL-10 were significantly lower in ITP mice. The secretion of serum proinflammatory cytokines IL-2 and IL-17A and the percentage of Th17 cells showed no statistically significant increase. In ITP mice the frequency of Treg cells and mRNA expression of Foxp3 was significantly lower in splenocytes. Our data suggest that the improved passive ITP mouse model does not mimic the autoimmune inflammatory process of human ITP. Compared with human ITP, this model has a similar change in frequency of Treg cells, which may directly or indirectly result from antibody-mediated platelet destruction due to attenuated release of TGF-β.

  4. Room temperature electrocompetent bacterial cells improve DNA transformation and recombineering efficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tu, Qiang; Yin, Jia; Fu, Jun; Herrmann, Jennifer; Li, Yuezhong; Yin, Yulong; Stewart, A Francis; Müller, Rolf; Zhang, Youming

    2016-04-20

    Bacterial competent cells are essential for cloning, construction of DNA libraries, and mutagenesis in every molecular biology laboratory. Among various transformation methods, electroporation is found to own the best transformation efficiency. Previous electroporation methods are based on washing and electroporating the bacterial cells in ice-cold condition that make them fragile and prone to death. Here we present simple temperature shift based methods that improve DNA transformation and recombineering efficiency in E. coli and several other gram-negative bacteria thereby economizing time and cost. Increased transformation efficiency of large DNA molecules is a significant advantage that might facilitate the cloning of large fragments from genomic DNA preparations and metagenomics samples.

  5. How to Improve the Survival of Transplanted Mesenchymal Stem Cell in Ischemic Heart?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liangpeng Li

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Mesenchymal stem cell (MSC is an intensely studied stem cell type applied for cardiac repair. For decades, the preclinical researches on animal model and clinical trials have suggested that MSC transplantation exerts therapeutic effect on ischemic heart disease. However, there remain major limitations to be overcome, one of which is the very low survival rate after transplantation in heart tissue. Various strategies have been tried to improve the MSC survival, and many of them showed promising results. In this review, we analyzed the studies in recent years to summarize the methods, effects, and mechanisms of the new strategies to address this question.

  6. A rational approach for the improvement of biomass production and lipid profile in cacao cell suspensions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rúa, Adriana María Gallego; Rojas, Luisa Fernanda; Trujillo, Aura Ines Urrea; Zuleta, Oriana Parra; Alvarez, Cristian David Correa; Garcés, Lucía Atehortúa

    2017-06-23

    Cocoa butter (CB) is produced in the seeds of Theobroma cacao representing 50% of its dry weight. The lipid composition plays an important role in the physicochemical, rheological, and sensory properties of the CB, making this fat a valuable resource for the production of chocolates, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals. In this paper, are described experimental strategies used for a rational improvement of biomass production and fatty acids in cacao cell suspension cultures. First, the lipid profile in four cacao varieties is characterized, and then, one variety is selected to induce cell suspensions using a direct method without previous establishment of a callus phase. To improve growth and total fat production in cell suspension cultures, modified DKW media and newly designed media culture, based on the mineral concentrations of cacao seeds (cacao biomass production, "CBP"), are analyzed and compared. In addition, the effect of acetate in the lipid profile of cell suspensions is evaluated. Ultrastructural histological analysis of lipid vesicles in cacao seeds and cell suspensions is also performed. The results will show that it is feasible to establish cacao suspensions without the calli step and increase the biomass production by selecting a suitable cacao variety and tissue and also applying a new culture media formulation. In addition, it is possible to synthesize fatty acids in cell cultures and modify the lipid profile adding a precursor of the novo biosynthesis of fatty acids such as the acetate. Transmission electronic microscopy examinations and differential interference contrast microscopy analysis will demonstrate that lipid vesicles are the main reserve substance in both cacao seeds and cell suspensions.

  7. Improvement of water management in polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell thanks to cathode cracks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Karst, Nicolas; Bouillon, Pierre [STMicroelectronics, Indre et Loire, 16 rue Pierre et Marie Curie, BP 7155, 37071 Tours Cedex 2 (France); Faucheux, Vincent; Martinent, Audrey; Simonato, Jean-Pierre [Commissariat a l' Energie Atomique (CEA) LITEN-DTNM, 17 rue des Martyrs, 38054 Grenoble Cedex 9 (France)

    2010-08-15

    The role of cathodic structure on water management was investigated for planar micro-air-breathing polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs). The electrical results demonstrate the possibility to decrease, with the same structure, both cell drying and cell flooding according to the environmental and operation conditions. Thanks to a simultaneous study of internal resistance and scanning electronic microscope (SEM) images, we demonstrate the advantageous influence of the presence of crack in cathodic catalytic layer on water management. On the one hand, the gold layer used as cathodic current collector is in contact with the electrolyte in the cracked zones which allows water maintenance within the electrolyte. It allows to decrease the cell drying and thus strongly increase the electrical performances. For cells operated in a 10% relative humidity atmosphere at 30 C and at a potential of 0.5 V, the current density increases from 28 mA cm{sup -2} to 188 mA cm{sup -2} (+570%) for the cell with a cathodic cracked network. On the other hand, the reduction in oxygen barrier diffusion due to the cathodic cracks allows to improve oxygen diffusion. In flooding state, the current densities were higher for a cell with a cracked network. For cells operating in a 70% relative humidity atmosphere at 30 C and at a potential of 0.2 V, a current density increase from 394 mA cm{sup -2} to 456 mA cm{sup -2} (16%) was noted for the cell with a cathodic cracked network. Microscopic observations allowed us to visualize water droplets growth mechanism in cathodic cracks. It was observed that the water comes out of the crack sides and partially saturates the cracks before emerging on cathodic collector. These results demonstrate that cathode structuration is a key parameter that plays a major role in the water management of PEMFCs. (author)

  8. Multimodal Imaging Reveals Improvement of Blood Supply to an Artificial Cell Transplant Site Induced by Bioluminescent Mesenchymal Stem Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gálisová, Andrea; Fábryová, Eva; Jirák, Daniel; Sticová, Eva; Lodererová, Alena; Herynek, Vít; Kříž, Jan; Hájek, Milan

    2017-02-01

    An artificial site for cell or pancreatic islet transplantation can be created using a polymeric scaffold, even though it suffers subcutaneously from improper vascularisation. A sufficient blood supply is crucial for graft survival and function and can be enhanced by transplantation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of syngeneic MSCs on neoangiogenesis and cell engraftment in an artificial site by multimodal imaging. MSCs expressing a gene for luciferase were injected into the artificial subcutaneous site 7 days after scaffold implantation. MRI experiments (anatomical and dynamic contrast-enhanced images) were performed on a 4.7-T scanner using gradient echo sequences. Bioluminescent images were acquired on an IVIS Lumina optical imager. Longitudinal examination was performed for 2 months, and one animal was monitored for 16 months. We confirmed the long-term presence (lasting more than 16 months) of viable donor cells inside the scaffolds using bioluminescence imaging with an optical signal peak appearing on day 3 after MSC implantation. When compared to controls, the tissue perfusion and vessel permeability in the scaffolds were significantly improved at the site with MSCs with a maximal peak on day 9 after MSC transplantation. Our data suggest that the maximal signal obtained by bioluminescence and magnetic resonance imaging from an artificially created site between 3 and 9 days after MSC transplantation can predict the optimal time range for subsequent cellular or tissue transplantation, including pancreatic islets.

  9. Further Improvement and System Integration of High Temperature Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Jens Oluf; Li, Qingfeng

    voltage around 0.6 V. The target durability is more than 5,000 hours. A hydrocarbon reformer and a catalytic burner are to be developed and integrated with the stack. The key issue of the project is development and improvement of the temperature-resistant polymer membranes with respect to durability......, and system integration of the high temperature PEMFC. The strategic developments of the FURIM are in three steps: (1) further improvement of the high temperature polymer membranes and related materials; (2) development of technological units including fuel cell stack, hydrocarbon reformer, afterburner...

  10. Yeast cell surface display: An efficient strategy for improvement of bioethanol fermentation performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xianzhong

    2017-03-04

    The cell surface serves as a functional interface between the inside and the outside of the cell. Within the past 20 y the ability of yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) to display heterologous proteins on the cell surface has been demonstrated. Furthermore, S. cerevisiae has been both developed and applied in expression of various proteins on the cell surface. Using this novel and useful strategy, proteins and peptides of various kinds can be displayed on the yeast cell surface by fusing the protein of interest with the glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI)-anchoring system. Consolidated bioprocessing (CBP) using S. cerevisiae represents a promising technology for bioethanol production. However, further work is needed to improve the fermentation performance. There is some excellent previous research regarding construction of yeast biocatalyst using the surface display system to decrease cost, increase efficiency of ethanol production and directly utilize starch or biomass for fuel production. In this commentary, we reviewed the yeast surface display system and highlighted recent work. Additionally, the strategy for decrease of phytate phosphate content in dried distillers grains with solubles (DDGS) by display of phytase on the yeast cell surface is discussed.

  11. Amniotic-fluid-derived mesenchymal stem cells overexpressing interleukin-1 receptor antagonist improve fulminant hepatic failure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu-Bao Zheng

    Full Text Available Uncontrolled hepatic immunoactivation is regarded as the primary pathological mechanism of fulminant hepatic failure (FHF. The major acute-phase mediators associated with FHF, including IL-1β, IL-6, and TNF-α, impair the regeneration of liver cells and stem cell grafts. Amniotic-fluid-derived mesenchymal stem cells (AF-MSCs have the capacity, under specific conditions, to differentiate into hepatocytes. Interleukin-1-receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra plays an anti-inflammatory and anti-apoptotic role in acute and chronic inflammation, and has been used in many experimental and clinical applications. In the present study, we implanted IL-1Ra-expressing AF-MSCs into injured liver via the portal vein, using D-galactosamine-induced FHF in a rat model. IL-1Ra expression, hepatic injury, liver regeneration, cytokines (IL-1β, IL-6, and animal survival were assessed after cell transplantation. Our results showed that AF-MSCs over-expressing IL-1Ra prevented liver failure and reduced mortality in rats with FHF. These animals also exhibited improved liver function and increased survival rates after injection with these cells. Using green fluorescent protein as a marker, we demonstrated that the engrafted cells and their progeny were incorporated into injured livers and produced albumin. This study suggests that AF-MSCs genetically modified to over-express IL-1Ra can be implanted into the injured liver to provide a novel therapeutic approach to the treatment of FHF.

  12. Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors Improve the Replication of Oncolytic Herpes Simplex Virus in Breast Cancer Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cody, James J.; Markert, James M.; Hurst, Douglas R.

    2014-01-01

    New therapies are needed for metastatic breast cancer patients. Oncolytic herpes simplex virus (oHSV) is an exciting therapy being developed for use against aggressive tumors and established metastases. Although oHSV have been demonstrated safe in clinical trials, a lack of sufficient potency has slowed the clinical application of this approach. We utilized histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors, which have been noted to impair the innate antiviral response and improve gene transcription from viral vectors, to enhance the replication of oHSV in breast cancer cells. A panel of chemically diverse HDAC inhibitors were tested at three different doses (LD50) for their ability to modulate the replication of oHSV in breast cancer cells. Several of the tested HDAC inhibitors enhanced oHSV replication at low multiplicity of infection (MOI) following pre-treatment of the metastatic breast cancer cell line MDA-MB-231 and the oHSV-resistant cell line 4T1, but not in the normal breast epithelial cell line MCF10A. Inhibitors of class I HDACs, including pan-selective compounds, were more effective for increasing oHSV replication compared to inhibitors that selectively target class II HDACs. These studies demonstrate that select HDAC inhibitors increase oHSV replication in breast cancer cells and provides support for pre-clinical evaluation of this combination strategy. PMID:24651853

  13. Hypomethylating agents synergize with irinotecan to improve response to chemotherapy in colorectal cancer cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anup Sharma

    Full Text Available Colorectal cancer (CRC is the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States. In the metastatic setting, the majority of patients respond to initial therapies but eventually develop resistance and progress. In this study, we test the hypothesis that priming with epigenetic therapy sensitizes CRC cell lines, which were previously resistant to subsequent chemotherapeutic agents. When multiple CRC cell lines are first exposed to 500 nM of the DNA demethylating agent, 5-aza-cytidine (AZA in-vitro, and the cells then established as in-vivo xenografts in untreated NOD-SCID mice; there is an enhanced response to cytotoxic chemotherapy with agents commonly used in CRC treatment. For irinotecan (IRI, growth diminished by 16-62 fold as assessed, by both proliferation (IC50 and anchorage independent cell growth soft agar assays. Treatment of resistant HCT116 cell line along with in-vivo, for CRC line xenografts, AZA plus IRI again exhibits this synergistic response with significant improvement in survival and tumor regression in the mice. Genome-wide expression correlates changes in pathways for cell adhesion and DNA repair with the above responses. A Phase 1/2 clinical trial testing this concept is already underway testing the clinical efficacy of this concept in IRI resistant, metastatic CRC (NCT01896856.

  14. Histone deacetylase inhibitors improve the replication of oncolytic herpes simplex virus in breast cancer cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James J Cody

    Full Text Available New therapies are needed for metastatic breast cancer patients. Oncolytic herpes simplex virus (oHSV is an exciting therapy being developed for use against aggressive tumors and established metastases. Although oHSV have been demonstrated safe in clinical trials, a lack of sufficient potency has slowed the clinical application of this approach. We utilized histone deacetylase (HDAC inhibitors, which have been noted to impair the innate antiviral response and improve gene transcription from viral vectors, to enhance the replication of oHSV in breast cancer cells. A panel of chemically diverse HDAC inhibitors were tested at three different doses (LD50 for their ability to modulate the replication of oHSV in breast cancer cells. Several of the tested HDAC inhibitors enhanced oHSV replication at low multiplicity of infection (MOI following pre-treatment of the metastatic breast cancer cell line MDA-MB-231 and the oHSV-resistant cell line 4T1, but not in the normal breast epithelial cell line MCF10A. Inhibitors of class I HDACs, including pan-selective compounds, were more effective for increasing oHSV replication compared to inhibitors that selectively target class II HDACs. These studies demonstrate that select HDAC inhibitors increase oHSV replication in breast cancer cells and provides support for pre-clinical evaluation of this combination strategy.

  15. Serum concentrations of type I and III procollagen propeptides in healthy children and girls with central precocious puberty during treatment with gonadotropin-releasing hormone analog and cyproterone acetate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hertel, Niels; Stoltenberg, Meredin; Juul, A

    1993-01-01

    Serum levels of type I and III procollagen propeptides (s-PICP and s-PIIINP) were measured in 466 healthy school children and in 23 girls with central precocious puberty (CPP) during GnRH analog and cyproterone acetate therapy, using two commercially available RIAs. In normal children, s-PICP and s...

  16. Quantitative calcaneal ultrasound parameters and bone mineral density at final height in girls treated with depot gonadotrophin-releasing hormone agonist for central precocious puberty or idiopathic short stature.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kordelaar, S. van; Noordam, C.; Otten, B.J.; Bergh, J.P.W. van den

    2003-01-01

    To evaluate the effect of gonadotrophin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist treatment on bone quality at final height, we studied girls with central precocious puberty (CPP) and with idiopathic short stature (ISS). A total of 25 Caucasian girls were included: group A (n=14) with idiopathic CPP (mean

  17. Use of Eltrombopag in Improving Poor Graft Function after Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samip Master

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Eltrombopag is a thrombopoietin agonist and has been used in aplastic anemia and post-transplantation thrombocytopenia. The c-MPL receptor is present on hematopoietic stem cells. There are no reports of eltrombopag utilization for improving poor graft function in the post-transplant setting. Here were report a case of a young female with post-transplant poor graft function as evident from the low absolute neutrophil count, anemia, and thrombocytopenia on day 60. Eltrombopag was started on day 72 and resulted in improvement in all 3 cell lines. The counts continued to be stable even after eltrombopag was discontinued. The patient tolerated the drug without significant side effects for 1 year.

  18. Colonic inflammation in mice is improved by cigarette smoke through iNKT cells recruitment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muriel Montbarbon

    Full Text Available Cigarette smoke (CS protects against intestinal inflammation during ulcerative colitis. Immunoregulatory mechanisms sustaining this effect remain unknown. The aim of this study was to assess the effects of CS on experimental colitis and to characterize the intestinal inflammatory response at the cellular and molecular levels. Using the InExpose® System, a smoking device accurately reproducing human smoking habit, we pre-exposed C57BL/6 mice for 2 weeks to CS, and then we induced colitis by administration of dextran sodium sulfate (DSS. This system allowed us to demonstrate that CS exposure improved colonic inflammation (significant decrease in clinical score, body weight loss and weight/length colonic ratio. This improvement was associated with a significant decrease in colonic proinflammatory Th1/Th17 cytokine expression, as compared to unexposed mice (TNF (p=0.0169, IFNγ (p<0.0001, and IL-17 (p=0.0008. Smoke exposure also induced an increased expression of IL-10 mRNA (p=0.0035 and a marked recruitment of iNKT (invariant Natural Killer T; CD45+ TCRβ+ CD1d tetramer+ cells in the colon of DSS-untreated mice. Demonstration of the role of iNKT cells in CS-dependent colitis improvement was performed using two different strains of NKT cells deficient mice. Indeed, in Jα18KO and CD1dKO animals, CS exposure failed to induce significant regulation of DSS-induced colitis both at the clinical and molecular levels. Thus, our study demonstrates that iNKT cells are pivotal actors in the CS-dependent protection of the colon. These results highlight the role of intestinal iNKT lymphocytes and their responsiveness to environmental stimuli. Targeting iNKT cells would represent a new therapeutic way for inflammatory bowel diseases.

  19. Improved Conservation Properties for Particle-in-cell Simulations with Kinetic Electrons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lewandowski, J.L.V.

    2003-01-01

    It is shown that a simple algorithm which exactly segregates between adiabatic and non-adiabatic electrons in particle-in-cell simulations of drift modes yields excellent conservation properties (e.g. particle number, energy) compared to the conventional df scheme. The removal of the free streaming term in the evolution of the marker weight is shown to be responsible for the improved linear and nonlinear properties of the simulated plasma

  20. Mesenchymal Stromal (Stem) Cell Therapy Fails to Improve Outcomes in Experimental Severe Influenza

    OpenAIRE

    Darwish, Ilyse; Banner, David; Mubareka, Samira; Kim, Hani; Besla, Rickvinder; Kelvin, David J.; Kain, Kevin C.; Liles, W. Conrad

    2013-01-01

    RATIONALE: Severe influenza remains a major public health threat and is responsible for thousands of deaths annually. Increasing antiviral resistance and limited effectiveness of current therapies highlight the need for new approaches to influenza treatment. Extensive pre-clinical data have shown that mesenchymal stromal (stem) cell (MSC) therapy can induce anti-inflammatory effects and enhance repair of the injured lung. We hypothesized that MSC therapy would improve survival, dampen lung in...

  1. A microbial fuel cell with improved cathode reaction as a low biochemical oxygen demand sensor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Kui Hyun; Jang, Jae Kyung; Pham, The Hai; Moon, Hyunsoo; Chang, In Seop; Kim, Byung Hong

    2003-08-01

    Mediator-less microbial fuel cells (MFC) enriched with oligotrophic microbes were optimized through enhancement of cathode reaction and lowering O2 diffusion into the anode compartment as a low BOD sensor. The optimization of the MFC has greatly improved the maximum current and coulomb yield. The oligotroph-type MFC could be used as a low BOD sensor with high operational stability, good repeatability and reproducibility.

  2. Improved Development of Somatic Cell Cloned Mouse Embryos by Vitamin C and Latrunculin A

    OpenAIRE

    Mallol, Anna; Santal?, Josep; Ib??ez, Elena

    2015-01-01

    Impaired development of embryos produced by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) is mostly associated with faulty reprogramming of the somatic nucleus to a totipotent state and can be improved by treatment with epigenetic modifiers. Here we report that addition of 100 μM vitamin C (VitC) to embryo culture medium for at least 16 h post-activation significantly increases mouse blastocyst formation and, when combined with the use of latrunculin A (LatA) during micromanipulation and activation pr...

  3. Improved accuracy of cell surface shaving proteomics in Staphylococcus aureus using a false-positive control

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Solis, Nestor; Larsen, Martin Røssel; Cordwell, Stuart J

    2010-01-01

    Proteolytic treatment of intact bacterial cells is an ideal means for identifying surface-exposed peptide epitopes and has potential for the discovery of novel vaccine targets. Cell stability during such treatment, however, may become compromised and result in the release of intracellular proteins...... that complicate the final analysis. Staphylococcus aureus is a major human pathogen, causing community and hospital-acquired infections, and is a serious healthcare concern due to the increasing prevalence of multiple antibiotic resistances amongst clinical isolates. We employed a cell surface "shaving" technique...... to trypsin and three identified in the control. The use of a subtracted false-positive strategy improved enrichment of surface-exposed peptides in the trypsin data set to approximately 80% (124/155 peptides). Predominant surface proteins were those associated with methicillin resistance-surface protein SACOL...

  4. Induced bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells improve cardiac performance of infarcted rat hearts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiao-Hong; Fu, Yong-Heng; Lin, Qiu-Xiong; Liu, Zai-Yi; Shan, Zhi-Xin; Deng, Chun-Yu; Zhu, Jie-Ning; Yang, Min; Lin, Shu-Guang; Li, Yangxin; Yu, Xi-Yong

    2012-02-01

    We investigated whether transplantation of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMSC) with induced BMSC (iBMSC) or uninduced BMSC (uBMSC) into the myocardium could improve the performance of post-infarcted rat hearts. BMSCs were specified by flowcytometry. IBMSCs were cocultured with rat cardiomyocyte before transplantation. Cells were injected into borders of cardiac scar tissue 1 week after experimental infarction. Cardiac performance was evaluated by echocardiography at 1, 2, and 4 weeks after cellular or PBS injection. Langendorff working-heart and histological studies were performed 4 weeks after treatment. Myogenesis was detected by quantitative PCR and immunofluorescence. Echocardiography showed a nearly normal ejection fraction (EF) in iBMSC-treated rats and all sham control rats but a lower EF in all PBS-treated animals. The iBMSC-treated heart, assessed by echocardiography, improved fractional shortening compared with PBS-treated hearts. The coronary flow (CF) was decreased obviously in PBS and uBMSC-treated groups, but recovered in iBMSC-treated heart at 4 weeks (P < 0.01). Immunofluorescent microscopy revealed co-localization of Superparamagnetic iron oxide (SPIO)-labeled transplanted cells with cardiac markers for cardiomyocytes, indicating regeneration of damaged myocardium. These data provide strong evidence that iBMSC implantation is of more potential to improve infarcted cardiac performance than uBMSC treatment. It will open new promising therapeutic opportunities for patients with post-infarction heart failure.

  5. Electric field assisted sintering to improve the performance of nanostructured dye sensitized solar cell (DSSC)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shojaeifar, Mohsen; Mohajerani, Ezeddin; Fathollahi, Mohammadreza

    2018-01-01

    Herein, we report the application of electric field assisted sintering (EFAS) procedure in dye sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The EFAS process improved DSSC performance by enhancing optical and electrical characteristics simultaneously. The EFAS procedure is shown to be capable of reducing the TiO2 nanoparticle aggregation leading to the higher surface area for dye molecules adsorbates. Lower nanoparticle aggregation can be evidently observed by field emission scanning electron microscopy imaging. By applying an external electric field, the current density and conversion efficiency improved significantly about 30% and 45%, respectively. UV-Visible spectra of the desorbed dye molecules on the porous nanoparticles bedding confirm a higher amount of dye loading in the presence of an external electric field. Correspondingly, comprehensive J-V characteristics modeling reveals the enhancement of the diffusion coefficient by EFAS process. The proposed method can be applied to improve the efficiency of the mesostructured hybrid perovskite solar cells, photodetectors, and quantum dot-sensitized solar cells, as well as reduction of the surface area loss in all porous media.

  6. Improved hydroxyurea effect with the use of text messaging in children with sickle cell anemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estepp, Jeremie H; Winter, Bryan; Johnson, Margery; Smeltzer, Matthew P; Howard, Scott C; Hankins, Jane S

    2014-11-01

    In children with sickle cell anemia (SCA), hydroxyurea reduces morbidity, but adherence is frequently suboptimal. Because most families of children with SCA have access to cellular telephone services, we assessed the impact of text messaged reminders as a tool to improve adherence to hydroxyurea. All patients hydroxyurea at a maximal tolerated dosage (MTD) at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital Comprehensive Pediatric Sickle Cell Program and who received automated text message reminders (SIMON®) were retrospectively identified. Laboratory parameters, hospitalizations, and medication possession ratios (MPR) prior to and after initiation of SIMON® were compared to assess the impact of SIMON®. Of the 97.3% of families with access to a cell phone, 91% elected to receive text message reminders. Among 55 children receiving hydroxyurea at MTD, laboratory parameters reflected waning medication compliance during the 12 months prior to SIMON®. Following initiation of SIMON®, children had higher mean corpuscular volumes, hemoglobin levels and fetal hemoglobin percentages and lower absolute reticulocyte counts and bilirubin levels, suggesting improved medication adherence. Hospitalizations were uncommon before and after SIMON®, and medication possession ratios (MPRs) were high before and after SIMON®, neither was significantly changed. SIMON® was feasible and improved hematologic parameters in children with SCA receiving hydroxyurea at a MTD. Future work will include extension of this technology to children with other chronic medical conditions who require daily use of medication. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Histone deacetylase inhibitor significantly improved the cloning efficiency of porcine somatic cell nuclear transfer embryos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yongye; Tang, Xiaochun; Xie, Wanhua; Zhou, Yan; Li, Dong; Yao, Chaogang; Zhou, Yang; Zhu, Jianguo; Lai, Liangxue; Ouyang, Hongsheng; Pang, Daxin

    2011-12-01

    Valproic acid (VPA), a histone deacetylase inbibitor, has been shown to generate inducible pluripotent stem (iPS) cells from mouse and human fibroblasts with a significant higher efficiency. Because successful cloning by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) undergoes a full reprogramming process in which the epigenetic state of a differentiated donor nuclear is converted into an embryonic totipotent state, we speculated that VPA would be useful in promoting cloning efficiency. Therefore, in the present study, we examined whether VPA can promote the developmental competence of SCNT embryos by improving the reprogramming state of donor nucleus. Here we report that 1 mM VPA for 14 to 16 h following activation significantly increased the rate of blastocyst formation of porcine SCNT embryos constructed from Landrace fetal fibroblast cells compared to the control (31.8 vs. 11.4%). However, we found that the acetylation level of Histone H3 lysine 14 and Histone H4 lysine 5 and expression level of Oct4, Sox2, and Klf4 was not significantly changed between VPA-treated and -untreated groups at the blastocyst stage. The SCNT embryos were transferred to 38 surrogates, and the cloning efficiency in the treated group was significantly improved compared with the control group. Taken together, we have demonstrated that VPA can improve both in vitro and in vivo development competence of porcine SCNT embryos.

  8. A novel design of bioartificial kidneys with improved cell performance and haemocompatibility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oo, Zay Yar; Kandasamy, Karthikeyan; Tasnim, Farah; Zink, Daniele

    2013-01-01

    Treatment with bioartificial kidneys had beneficial effects in animal experiments and improved survival of critically ill patients with acute kidney injury in a Phase II clinical trial. However, a Phase II b clinical trial failed. This and other results suggested various problems with the current design of bioartificial kidneys. We propose a novel design to improve various properties of device, including haemocompatibility and cell performance. An important feature of the novel design is confinement of the blood to the lumina of the hollow fibre membranes. This avoids exposure of the blood to the non-haemocompatible outer surfaces of hollow fibre membranes, which usually occurs in bioartificial kidneys. We use these outer surfaces as substrate for cell growth. Our results show that commercial hollow fibre membranes can be directly applied in the bioreactor when human primary renal proximal tubular cells are grown in this configuration, and no coatings are required for the formation of robust and functional renal epithelia. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the bioreactor unit produces significant amounts of interleukins. This result helps to understand the immunomodulatory effects of bioartificial kidneys, which have been observed previously. The novel bioartificial kidney design outlined here and the results obtained would be expected to improve the safety and performance of bioartificial kidneys and to contribute to a better understanding of their effects. PMID:23480720

  9. Human amniotic mesenchymal stromal cell transplantation improves endometrial regeneration in rodent models of intrauterine adhesions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gan, Lu; Duan, Hua; Xu, Qian; Tang, Yi-Qun; Li, Jin-Jiao; Sun, Fu-Qing; Wang, Sha

    2017-05-01

    Intrauterine adhesion (IUA) is a common uterine cavity disease characterized by the unsatisfactory regeneration of damaged endometria. Recently, stem cell transplantation has been proposed to promote the recovery process. Here we investigated whether human amniotic mesenchymal stromal cells (hAMSCs), a valuable resource for transplantation therapy, could improve endometrial regeneration in rodent IUA models. Forty female Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly assigned to five groups: normal, sham-operated, mechanical injury, hAMSC transplantation, and negative control group. One week after intervention and transplantation, histological analyses were performed, and immunofluorescent and immunohistochemical expression of cell-specific markers and messenger RNA expression of cytokines were measured. Thicker endometria, increased gland numbers and fewer fibrotic areas were found in the hAMSC transplantation group compared with the mechanical injury group. Engraftment of hAMSCs was detected by the presence of anti-human nuclear antigen-positive cells in the endometrial glands of the transplantation uteri. Transplantation of hAMSCs significantly decreased messenger RNA levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines (tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-1β), and increased those of anti-inflammatory cytokines (basic fibroblast growth factor, and interleukin-6) compared with the injured uterine horns. Immunohistochemical expression of endometrial epithelial cells was revealed in specimens after hAMSC transplantation, whereas it was absent in the mechanically injured uteri. hAMSC transplantation promotes endometrial regeneration after injury in IUA rat models, possibly due to immunomodulatory properties. These cells provide a more easily accessible source of stem cells for future research into the impact of cell transplantation on damaged endometria. Copyright © 2017 International Society for Cellular Therapy. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Improved solid oxide fuel cell stacks: Power density, durability and modularity. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lund Frandsen, H.; Kiebach, W.R.; Hoeegh, J. (Technical Univ. of Denmark. Risoe National Lab. for Sustainable Energy, Roskilde (Denmark)) (and others)

    2010-10-15

    This report presents the work performed within the project PSO2009-1-10207 during the period from 01-04-2009 - 31-06-2010. The report is divided into three parts covering the three work packages: Stack components; Stacks and durability; and Large SOFC systems: modularity and scalability. The project contains 38 milestones and all milestones in the project have been either fully or partly fulfilled. Two major achievements within this project concern the robustness towards dynamic operations and implementation of cells with more active cathodes: Within this project tools to evaluate and test SOFC stacks with respect to robustness during dynamic operations has been developed. From stack tests performed under dynamic conditions it was observed that the effect on degradation and failure seemed to be very little. The thermo-mechanical models developed in this project in combination with the dynamic stack model was used in combination to understand why. The results clearly showed that the hardest stress field applied to the cells arises from the steady state operating point rather than from the dynamic conditions. This is a very promising result concerning the fact that especially small CHP units in a commercial system will experience dynamic conditions from load cycling and thermal cycling. A new type of cell with a more active cathode has been formulated and introduced into the TOFC stacks in this project. The aim was to improve the effect of the stack by 25 %. However, compared to a standard stack with the ''old'' cells, the stack effect was increased by 44% - from a cross flow stack with standard 2G cells to a cross flow stack with 2.5G cells. The new type of cells also show an excellent stability towards moisture in the cathode feed, and a stack with 2.5G cells has been tested for 12.000 hrs with a degradation rate of 30 mOMEGAcm2/1000 hr. (Author)

  11. Improved performance of mesoscopic perovskite solar cell using an accelerated crystalline formation method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sidhik, Siraj; Esparza, Diego; Martínez-Benítez, Alejandro; López-Luke, Tzarara; Carriles, Ramón; De la Rosa, Elder

    2017-10-01

    Highly smooth organo-lead halide perovskite (OHP) films with less intra-granular defects are necessary to minimize the non-radiative carrier recombination in photovoltaic devices. Herein, a simple air-extraction anti-solvent deposition (AAD) technique is proposed to improve the quality of perovskite films. An air extraction process accompanied by anti-solvent washing helps to improve the morphology of perovskite, leading to smooth, homogeneous, compact, pin-hole free and densely packed films. Perovskite films with an average roughness of 5.01 nm, which is the smoothest morphology in mesoscopic-perovskite solar cell to the extent of our knowledge, high crystallinity, and a crystallite size in the range of ∼500 nm to 1 μm have been achieved. Average power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 16.99% for 15 cells and a best PCE of 17.70% with a high open circuit voltage of 1.075 and fill factor of 74.22% were achieved using the AAD approach without a glove box. The cells exhibit virtually no hysteresis. These efficiency values are approximately 37.68% higher than the cells fabricated using anti-solvent process without air-extraction, where an average efficiency of 12.34% was measured. This method demonstrates high reproducibility and can be employed for the large scale production of PSC at reduced cost.

  12. Parasitic infection improves survival from septic peritonitis by enhancing mast cell responses to bacteria in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel E Sutherland

    Full Text Available Mammals are serially infected with a variety of microorganisms, including bacteria and parasites. Each infection reprograms the immune system's responses to re-exposure and potentially alters responses to first-time infection by different microorganisms. To examine whether infection with a metazoan parasite modulates host responses to subsequent bacterial infection, mice were infected with the hookworm-like intestinal nematode Nippostrongylus brasiliensis, followed in 2-4 weeks by peritoneal injection of the pathogenic bacterium Klebsiella pneumoniae. Survival from Klebsiella peritonitis two weeks after parasite infection was better in Nippostrongylus-infected animals than in unparasitized mice, with Nippostrongylus-infected mice having fewer peritoneal bacteria, more neutrophils, and higher levels of protective interleukin 6. The improved survival of Nippostrongylus-infected mice depends on IL-4 because the survival benefit is lost in mice lacking IL-4. Because mast cells protect mice from Klebsiella peritonitis, we examined responses in mast cell-deficient Kit(W-sh/Kit(W-sh mice, in which parasitosis failed to improve survival from Klebsiella peritonitis. However, adoptive transfer of cultured mast cells to Kit(W-sh/Kit(W-sh mice restored survival benefits of parasitosis. These results show that recent infection with Nippostrongylus brasiliensis protects mice from Klebsiella peritonitis by modulating mast cell contributions to host defense, and suggest more generally that parasitosis can yield survival advantages to a bacterially infected host.

  13. Improved FRET Biosensor for the Measurement of BCR-ABL Activity in Chronic Myeloid Leukemia Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horiguchi, Mika; Fujioka, Mari; Kondo, Takeshi; Fujioka, Yoichiro; Li, Xinxin; Horiuchi, Kosui; O Satoh, Aya; Nepal, Prabha; Nishide, Shinya; Nanbo, Asuka; Teshima, Takanori; Ohba, Yusuke

    2017-02-02

    Although the co-development of companion diagnostics with molecular targeted drugs is desirable, truly efficient diagnostics are limited to diseases in which chromosomal translocations or overt mutations are clearly correlated with drug efficacy. Moreover, even for such diseases, few methods are available to predict whether drug administration is effective for each individual patient whose disease is expected to respond to the drug(s). We have previously developed a biosensor based on the principle of Förster resonance energy transfer to measure the activity of the tyrosine kinase BCR-ABL and its response to drug treatment in patient-derived chronic myeloid leukemia cells. The biosensor harbors CrkL, one of the major substrates of BCR-ABL, and is therefore named Pickles after phosphorylation indicator of CrkL en substrate. The efficacy of this technique as a clinical test has been demonstrated, but the number of cells available for analysis is limited in a case-dependent manner, owing to the cleavage of the biosensor in patient-derived leukemia cells. Here, we describe an improved biosensor with an amino acid substitution and a nuclear export signal being introduced. Of the two predicted cleavage positions in CrkL, the mutations inhibited one cleavage completely and the other cleavage partially, thus collectively increasing the number of cells available for drug evaluation. This improved version of the biosensor holds promise in the future development of companion diagnostics to predict responses to tyrosine kinase inhibitors in patients with chronic myeloid leukemia.

  14. Synthesis and characterization of Ag nanowires: Improved performance in dye sensitized solar cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Safia A. Kazmi

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Development of highly efficient dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs with good photovoltaic parameters is an active research area of current global interest. Recently, one dimensional nanomaterial, such as nanorods and nanotubes has replaced the nanoparticles used in DSSCs anode because of their ability to improve the electron transport leading to enhanced electron collection efficiency. In the present work, rapid synthesis of silver nanowires (AgNWs was done. The XRD characterization was performed to confirm the formation and size of synthesized AgNWs. It was observed that FWHM of the diffraction peaks was increased with AgNWs concentration in TiO2. The synthesized TiO2AgNWs nanocomposite was used as the photo anode of Dye sensitized solar cell. The I–V characteristics of the solar cell were drawn using standard conditions. It was observed that TiO2AgNWs based solar cells have significantly increased photocurrent density resulting in improved conversion efficiency as compared to pure TiO2 based DSSC.

  15. A novel splice mutation in the TP53 gene associated with Leydig cell tumor and primitive neuroectodermal tumor

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stecher, Chalotte Willemann; Grønbaek, Kirsten; Hasle, Henrik

    2008-01-01

    A 20-month-old boy presented with precocious puberty due to a Leydig cell tumor, and at the age of 6 years with a primitive neuroectodermal brain-tumor (PNET). A novel splice site mutation of the TP53-gene, likely to be associated with a nonfunctional protein, was found in the proband, his father...

  16. Design to improve photoelectric efficiency for photovoltaic cell array for laser power beaming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiaojiang; Li, Beibei

    2017-02-01

    Photovoltaic cell (PV) array is a photovoltaic conversion device for laser power beaming, and uneven distribution of laser beam energy will have negative influence on the photovoltaic efficiency of PV array. In order to improve the photovoltaic efficiency under uneven laser irradiation, an optimized and efficient parallel-series PV array is designed. Based on the mathematical model and MATLB/Simulink simulation model of PV array , the influencing factors of photovoltaic efficiency are analyzed, and the concept and scheme to improve the photovoltaic efficiency of parallel-series PV array are proposed. Finally, compared with typical PV array, the effects improving efficiency of optimized array is simulated and analyzed. The simulation results show that under uneven laser irradiation, the optimized parallel-series PV array can obtain higher photovoltaic efficiency.

  17. Method of improving photoelectric efficiency for laser power beaming based on photovoltaic cell layout optimization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Beibei; Li, Xiaojiang

    2017-02-01

    In accordance with the high impact of the uneven distribution of laser beam power on the photovoltaic efficiency of photovoltaic cell (PV) array, a method based on PV layout optimization is proposed to improve the photovoltaic efficiency. First of all, a mathematical model of series-parallel PV array is built, and by analyzing the influencing factors on photovoltaic efficiency, the idea and scheme to improve the photovoltaic efficiency based on PV layout optimization is provided; then, the MATLAB/Simulink simulation tool is used to simulate the effects of improving photoelectric efficiency. The simulation results show that compared to the traditional PV array, the optimized PV array can obtain higher photovoltaic efficiency, and compared to the situation with uneven temperature distribution, the array efficiency has higher efficiency under even temperature distribution.

  18. Overexpression of Polysialylated Neural Cell Adhesion Molecule Improves the Migration Capacity of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Oligodendrocyte Precursors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czepiel, Marcin; Leicher, Lasse; Becker, Katja; Boddeke, Erik

    2014-01-01

    Cell replacement therapy aiming at the compensation of lost oligodendrocytes and restoration of myelination in acquired or congenital demyelination disorders has gained considerable interest since the discovery of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). Patient-derived iPSCs provide an inexhaustible source for transplantable autologous oligodendrocyte precursors (OPCs). The first transplantation studies in animal models for demyelination with iPSC-derived OPCs demonstrated their survival and remyelinating capacity, but also revealed their limited migration capacity. In the present study, we induced overexpression of the polysialylating enzyme sialyltransferase X (STX) in iPSC-derived OPCs to stimulate the production of polysialic acid-neuronal cell adhesion molecules (PSA-NCAMs), known to promote and facilitate the migration of OPCs. The STX-overexpressing iPSC-derived OPCs showed a normal differentiation and maturation pattern and were able to downregulate PSA-NCAMs when they became myelin-forming oligodendrocytes. After implantation in the demyelinated corpus callosum of cuprizone-fed mice, STX-expressing iPSC-derived OPCs demonstrated a significant increase in migration along the axons. Our findings suggest that the reach and efficacy of iPSC-derived OPC transplantation can be improved by stimulating the OPC migration potential via specific gene modulation. PMID:25069776

  19. Performance Improvements of Selective Emitters by Laser Openings on Large-Area Multicrystalline Si Solar Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheng-Shih Wang

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available This study focuses on the laser opening technique used to form a selective emitter (SE structure on multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si. This technique can be used in the large-area (156 × 156 mm2 solar cells. SE process of this investigation was performed using 3 samples SE1–SE3. Laser fluences can vary in range of 2–5 J/cm2. The optimal conversion efficiency of 15.95% is obtained with the SE3 (2 J/cm2 fluence after laser opening with optimization of heavy and light dopant, which yields a gain of 0.48%abs compared with that of a reference cell (without fluence. In addition, this optimal SE3 cell displays improved characteristics compared with other cells with a higher average value of external quantum efficiency (EQEavg = 68.6% and a lower average value of power loss (Ploss = 2.33 mW/cm2. For the fabrication of solar cells, the laser opening process comprises fewer steps than traditional photolithography does. Furthermore, the laser opening process decreases consumption of chemical materials; therefore, the laser opening process decreases both time and cost. Therefore, SE process is simple, cheap, and suitable for commercialization. Moreover, the prominent features of the process render it effective means to promote overall performance in the photovoltaic industry.

  20. Improved molecular toolkit for cAMP studies in live cells

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    Nicol Xavier

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background cAMP is a ubiquitous second messenger involved in a wide spectrum of cellular processes including gene transcription, cell proliferation, and axonal pathfinding. Precise spatiotemporal manipulation and monitoring in live cells are crucial for investigation of cAMP-dependent pathways, but existing tools have several limitations. Findings We have improved the suitability of cAMP manipulating and monitoring tools for live cell imaging. We attached a red fluorescent tag to photoactivated adenylyl cyclase (PACα that enables reliable visualization of this optogenetic tool for cAMP manipulation in target cells independently of its photoactivation. We show that replacement of CFP/YFP FRET pair with GFP/mCherry in the Epac2-camps FRET probe reduces photobleaching and stabilizes the noise level during imaging experiments. Conclusions The modifications of PACα and Epac2-camps enhance these tools for in vitro cAMP studies in cultured living cells and in vivo studies in live animals in a wide range of experiments, and particularly for long term time-lapse imaging.

  1. Improved Reliability of Small Molecule Organic Solar Cells by Double Anode Buffer Layers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pao-Hsun Huang

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available An optimized hybrid planar heterojunction (PHJ of small molecule organic solar cells (SM-OSCs based on copper phthalocyanine (CuPc as donor and fullerene (C60 as acceptor was fabricated, which obviously enhanced the performance of device by sequentially using both MoO3 and pentacene as double anode buffer layers (ABL, also known as hole extraction layer (HEL. A series of the vacuum-deposited ABL, acting as an electron and exciton blocking layer, were examined for their characteristics in SM-OSCs. The performance and reliability were compared between conventional ITO/ABL/CuPc/C60/BCP/Ag cells and the new ITO/double ABL/CuPc/C60/BCP/Ag cells. The effect on the electrical properties of these materials was also investigated to obtain the optimal thickness of ABL. The comparison shows that the modified cell has an enhanced reliability compared to traditional cells. The improvement of lifetime was attributed to the idea of double layers to prevent humidity and oxygen from diffusing into the active layer. We demonstrated that the interfacial extraction layers are necessary to avoid degradation of device. That is to say, in normal temperature and pressure, a new avenue for the device within double buffer layers has exhibited the highest values of open circuit voltage (Voc, fill factor (FF, and lifetime in this work compared to monolayer of ABL.

  2. Improvement of Bioactive Compound Classification through Integration of Orthogonal Cell-Based Biosensing Methods

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    Goran N. Jovanovic

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Lack of specificity for different classes of chemical and biological agents, and false positives and negatives, can limit the range of applications for cell-based biosensors. This study suggests that the integration of results from algal cells (Mesotaenium caldariorum and fish chromatophores (Betta splendens improves classification efficiency and detection reliability. Cells were challenged with paraquat, mercuric chloride, sodium arsenite and clonidine. The two detection systems were independently investigated for classification of the toxin set by performing discriminant analysis. The algal system correctly classified 72% of the bioactive compounds, whereas the fish chromatophore system correctly classified 68%. The combined classification efficiency was 95%. The algal sensor readout is based on fluorescence measurements of changes in the energy producing pathways of photosynthetic cells, whereas the response from fish chromatophores was quantified using optical density. Change in optical density reflects interference with the functioning of cellular signal transduction networks. Thus, algal cells and fish chromatophores respond to the challenge agents through sufficiently different mechanisms of action to be considered orthogonal.

  3. Changes in growth hormone-binding protein in girls with central precocious puberty treated with a depot preparation of luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone analogue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, S B; Donnadieu, M; Chaussain, J L

    1993-01-01

    Growth hormone-binding protein (GHBP) was studied in 11 girls with true precocious puberty, aged 7.3 +/- 0.2 years (mean +/- SE), before and after the first 6 months of treatment with luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone analogue D-Trp6-LHRH. The 125I-human GH was incubated with 150 microliters of serum, bound and free GH were separated by gel filtration. The levels of GHBP increased significantly from 24.2 +/- 1.3 to 28.1 +/- 1.9% (p pubertal spurt is mediated by a sex-steroid-induced rise in GH concentration, and they suggest that the levels of GHBP may be related to the GH secretion and its variation with treatment.

  4. Serum insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) and IGF-binding protein 3 levels are increased in central precocious puberty

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Juul, A; Scheike, Thomas Harder; Nielsen, C T

    1995-01-01

    , stimulates insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) and IGF-binding protein 3 (IGFBP-3) production. However, little is known about GH, IGF-I, and IGFBP-3 serum levels in children with precocious puberty. Treatment of CPP by GnRH agonists has become the treatment of choice. However, the effect of long term...... treatment with GnRH in combination with an antiandrogen (cyproterone acetate) to block the possible effect of adrenal androgens has not previously been evaluated. We, therefore, studied 40 patients with idiopathic CPP that were treated for 24 months with either GnRH analog (Buserelin) in combination...... with cyproterone acetate (Androcur; n = 23) or with long acting GnRH analog (Decapeptyl Depot; n = 17). We found that serum IGF-I levels were increased before treatment in both groups (mean +/- SE, 446 +/- 35 and 391 +/- 35 micrograms/L; P

  5. Spring Chinook Salmon Interactions Indices and Residual/Precocial Monitoring in the Upper Yakima Basin; Yakima/Klickitat Fisheries Project Monitoring and Evaluation, 2001-2002 Annual Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pearsons, Todd N.; James, Brenda B.; Johnson, Christopher L. (Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Olympia, WA)

    2003-05-01

    This report examines some of the factors that can influence the success of supplementation, which is currently being tested in the Yakima Basin using upper Yakima stock of spring chinook salmon. Supplementation success in the Yakima Basin is defined relative to four topic areas: natural production, genetics, ecological interactions, and harvest (Busack et al. 1997). The success of spring chinook salmon supplementation in the Yakima Basin is dependent, in part, upon fish culture practices and favorable physical and biological conditions in the natural environment (Busack et al. 1997). Shortfalls in either of these two topics (i.e., failure in culturing many fish that have high long-term fitness or environmental conditions that constrain spring chinook salmon production) will cause supplementation success to be limited. For example, inadvertent selection or propagation of spring chinook that residualize or precocially mature may hinder supplementation success. Spring chinook salmon that residualize (do not migrate during the normal migration period) may have lower survival rates than migrants and, additionally, may interact with wild fish and cause unacceptable impacts to non-target taxa. Large numbers of precocials (nonanadromous spawners) may increase competition for females and significantly skew ratios of offspring sired by nonanadromous males, which could result in more nonanadromous spring chinook in future generations. Conditions in the natural environment may also limit the success of spring chinook supplementation. For example, intra or interspecific competition may constrain spring chinook salmon production. Spring chinook salmon juveniles may compete with each other for food or space or compete with other species that have similar ecological requirements. Monitoring of spring chinook salmon residuals, precocials, prey abundance, carrying capacity, and competition will help researchers interpret why supplementation is working or not working (Busack et al

  6. Improved methods for reprogramming human dermal fibroblasts using fluorescence activated cell sorting.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David J Kahler

    Full Text Available Current methods to derive induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC lines from human dermal fibroblasts by viral infection rely on expensive and lengthy protocols. One major factor contributing to the time required to derive lines is the ability of researchers to identify fully reprogrammed unique candidate clones from a mixed cell population containing transformed or partially reprogrammed cells and fibroblasts at an early time point post infection. Failure to select high quality colonies early in the derivation process results in cell lines that require increased maintenance and unreliable experimental outcomes. Here, we describe an improved method for the derivation of iPSC lines using fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS to isolate single cells expressing the cell surface marker signature CD13(NEGSSEA4(POSTra-1-60(POS on day 7-10 after infection. This technique prospectively isolates fully reprogrammed iPSCs, and depletes both parental and "contaminating" partially reprogrammed fibroblasts, thereby substantially reducing the time and reagents required to generate iPSC lines without the use of defined small molecule cocktails. FACS derived iPSC lines express common markers of pluripotency, and possess spontaneous differentiation potential in vitro and in vivo. To demonstrate the suitability of FACS for high-throughput iPSC generation, we derived 228 individual iPSC lines using either integrating (retroviral or non- integrating (Sendai virus reprogramming vectors and performed extensive characterization on a subset of those lines. The iPSC lines used in this study were derived from 76 unique samples from a variety of tissue sources, including fresh or frozen fibroblasts generated from biopsies harvested from healthy or disease patients.

  7. Percutaneous Mitral Valve Repair in Mitral Regurgitation Reduces Cell-Free Hemoglobin and Improves Endothelial Function.

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    Christos Rammos

    Full Text Available Endothelial dysfunction is predictive for cardiovascular events and may be caused by decreased bioavailability of nitric oxide (NO. NO is scavenged by cell-free hemoglobin with reduction of bioavailable NO up to 70% subsequently deteriorating vascular function. While patients with mitral regurgitation (MR suffer from an impaired prognosis, mechanisms relating to coexistent vascular dysfunctions have not been described yet. Therapy of MR using a percutaneous mitral valve repair (PMVR approach has been shown to lead to significant clinical benefits. We here sought to investigate the role of endothelial function in MR and the potential impact of PMVR.Twenty-seven patients with moderate-to-severe MR treated with the MitraClip® device were enrolled in an open-label single-center observational study. Patients underwent clinical assessment, conventional echocardiography, and determination of endothelial function by measuring flow-mediated dilation (FMD of the brachial artery using high-resolution ultrasound at baseline and at 3-month follow-up. Patients with MR demonstrated decompartmentalized hemoglobin and reduced endothelial function (cell-free plasma hemoglobin in heme 28.9±3.8 μM, FMD 3.9±0.9%. Three months post-procedure, PMVR improved ejection fraction (from 41±3% to 46±3%, p = 0.03 and NYHA functional class (from 3.0±0.1 to 1.9±1.7, p<0.001. PMVR was associated with a decrease in cell free plasma hemoglobin (22.3±2.4 μM, p = 0.02 and improved endothelial functions (FMD 4.8±1.0%, p<0.0001.We demonstrate here that plasma from patients with MR contains significant amounts of cell-free hemoglobin, which is accompanied by endothelial dysfunction. PMVR therapy is associated with an improved hemoglobin decompartmentalization and vascular function.

  8. Rac1 selective activation improves retina ganglion cell survival and regeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erika Lorenzetto

    Full Text Available In adult mammals, after optic nerve injury, retinal ganglion cells (RGCs do not regenerate their axons and most of them die by apoptosis within a few days. Recently, several strategies that activate neuronal intracellular pathways were proposed to prevent such degenerative processes. The rho-related small GTPase Rac1 is part of a complex, still not fully understood, intracellular signaling network, mediating in neurons many effects, including axon growth and cell survival. However, its role in neuronal survival and regeneration in vivo has not yet been properly investigated. To address this point we intravitreally injected selective cell-penetrating Rac1 mutants after optic nerve crush and studied the effect on RGC survival and axonal regeneration. We injected two well-characterized L61 constitutively active Tat-Rac1 fusion protein mutants, in which a second F37A or Y40C mutation confers selectivity in downstream signaling pathways. Results showed that, 15 days after crush, both mutants were able to improve survival and to prevent dendrite degeneration, while the one harboring the F37A mutation also improved axonal regeneration. The treatment with F37A mutant for one month did not improve the axonal elongation respect to 15 days. Furthermore, we found an increase of Pak1 T212 phosphorylation and ERK1/2 expression in RGCs after F37A treatment, whereas ERK1/2 was more activated in glial cells after Y40C administration. Our data suggest that the selective activation of distinct Rac1-dependent pathways could represent a therapeutic strategy to counteract neuronal degenerative processes in the retina.

  9. Alterations in regulatory T cells induced by specific oligosaccharides improve vaccine responsiveness in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcel A Schijf

    Full Text Available Prophylactic vaccinations are generally performed to protect naïve individuals with or without suppressed immune responsiveness. In a mouse model for Influenza vaccinations the specific alterations of CD4(+CD25(+Foxp3(+ regulatory T-cells (Tregs in the immune modulation induced by orally supplied oligosaccharides containing scGOS/lcFOS/pAOS was assessed. This dietary intervention increased vaccine specific DTH responses. In addition, a significant increased percentage of T-bet(+ (Th1 activated CD69(+CD4(+ T cells (p<0.001 and reduced percentage of Gata-3(+ (Th2 activated CD69(+CD4(+T cells (p<0.001 was detected in the mesenteric lymph nodes (MLN of mice receiving scGOS/lcFOS/pAOS compared to control mice. Although no difference in the number or percentage of Tregs (CD4(+Foxp3(+ could be determined after scGOS/lcFOS/pAOS intervention, the percentage of CXCR3 (+ /T-bet(+ (Th1-Tregs was significantly reduced (p<0.05 in mice receiving scGOS/lcFOS/pAOS as compared to mice receiving placebo diets. Moreover, although no absolute difference in suppressive capacity could be detected, an alteration in cytokine profile suggests a regulatory T cell shift towards a reducing Th1 suppression profile, supporting an improved vaccination response.These data are indicative for improved vaccine responsiveness due to reduced Th1 suppressive capacity in the Treg population of mice fed the oligosaccharide specific diet, showing compartmentalization within the Treg population. The modulation of Tregs to control immune responses provides an additional arm of intervention using alternative strategies possibly leading to the development of improved vaccines.

  10. How innate is locomotion in precocial animals? A study on the early development of spatio-temporal gait variables and gait symmetry in piglets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanden Hole, Charlotte; Goyens, Jana; Prims, Sara; Fransen, Erik; Ayuso Hernando, Miriam; Van Cruchten, Steven; Aerts, Peter; Van Ginneken, Chris

    2017-08-01

    Locomotion is one of the most important ecological functions in animals. Precocial animals, such as pigs, are capable of independent locomotion shortly after birth. This raises the question whether coordinated movement patterns and the underlying muscular control in these animals is fully innate or whether there still exists a rapid maturation. We addressed this question by studying gait development in neonatal pigs through the analysis of spatio-temporal gait characteristics during locomotion at self-selected speed. To this end, we made video recordings of piglets walking along a corridor at several time points (from 0 h to 96 h). After digitization of the footfalls, we analysed self-selected speed and spatio-temporal characteristics (e.g. stride and step lengths, stride frequency and duty factor) to study dynamic similarity, intralimb coordination and interlimb coordination. To assess the variability of the gait pattern, left-right asymmetry was studied. To distinguish neuromotor maturation from effects caused by growth, both absolute and normalized data (according to the dynamic similarity concept) were included in the analysis. All normalized spatio-temporal variables reached stable values within 4 h of birth, with most of them showing little change after the age of 2 h. Most asymmetry indices showed stable values, hovering around 10%, within 8 h of birth. These results indicate that coordinated movement patterns are not entirely innate, but that a rapid neuromotor maturation, potentially also the result of the rearrangement or recombination of existing motor modules, takes place in these precocial animals. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  11. Improving the performance of perovskite solar cells with glycerol-doped PEDOT:PSS buffer layer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jian-Feng, Li; Chuang, Zhao; Heng, Zhang; Jun-Feng, Tong; Peng, Zhang; Chun-Yan, Yang; Yang-Jun, Xia; Duo-Wang, Fan

    2016-02-01

    In this paper, we investigate the effects of glycerol doping on transmittance, conductivity and surface morphology of poly(3,4-ethylene dioxythiophene):poly(styrene sulfonate)) (PEDOT:PSS) and its influence on the performance of perovskite solar cells. . The conductivity of PEDOT:PSS is improved obviously by doping glycerol. The maximum of the conductivity is 0.89 S/cm when the doping concentration reaches 6 wt%, which increases about 127 times compared with undoped. The perovskite solar cells are fabricated with a configuration of indium tin oxide (ITO)/PEDOT:PSS/CH3NH3PbI3/PC61BM/Al, where PEDOT:PSS and PC61BM are used as hole and electron transport layers, respectively. The results show an improvement of hole charge transport as well as an increase of short-circuit current density and a reduction of series resistance, owing to the higher conductivity of the doped PEDOT:PSS. Consequently, it improves the whole performance of perovskite solar cell. The power conversion efficiency (PCE) of the device is improved from 8.57% to 11.03% under AM 1.5 G (100 mW/cm2 illumination) after the buffer layer has been modified. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 61264002, 61166002, 91333206, and 51463011), the Natural Science Foundation of Gansu Province, China (Grant No. 1308RJZA159), the New Century Excellent Talents in University of Ministry of Education of China (Grant No. NCET-13-0840), the Research Project of Graduate Teacher of Gansu Province, China (Grant No. 2014A-0042), and the Postdoctoral Science Foundation from Lanzhou Jiaotong University, China.

  12. Endothelial Progenitor Cell Mobilization in Preterm Infants With Sepsis Is Associated With Improved Survival.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siavashi, Vahid; Asadian, Simin; Taheri-Asl, Masoud; Keshavarz, Samaneh; Zamani-Ahmadmahmudi, Mohamad; Nassiri, Seyed Mahdi

    2017-10-01

    Microvascular dysfunction plays a key role in the pathology of sepsis, leading to multi-organ failure, and death. Circulating endothelial progenitor cells (cEPCs) are critically involved in the maintenance of the vascular homeostasis in both physiological and pathological contexts. In this study, concentration of cEPCs in preterm infants with sepsis was determined to recognize whether the EPC mobilization would affect the clinical outcome of infantile sepsis. One hundred and thirty-three preterm infants (81 with sepsis and 52 without sepsis) were enrolled in this study. The release of EPCs in circulation was first quantified. Thereafter, these cells were cultivated and biological features of these cells such as, proliferation and colony forming efficiency were analyzed. The levels of chemoattractant cytokines were also measured in infants. In mouse models of sepsis, effects of VEGF and SDF-1 as well as anti-VEGF and anti-SDF-1 were evaluated in order to shed light upon the role which the EPC mobilization plays in the overall survival of septic animals. Circulating EPCs were significantly higher in preterm infants with sepsis than in the non-sepsis group. Serum levels of VEGF, SDF-1, and Angiopoietin-2 were also higher in preterm infants with sepsis than in control non-sepsis. In the animal experiments, injection of VEGF and SDF-1 prompted the mobilization of EPCs, leading to an improvement in survival whereas injection of anti-VEGF and anti-SDF-1 was associated with significant deterioration of survival. Overall, our results demonstrated the beneficial effects of EPC release in preterm infants with sepsis, with increased mobilization of these cells was associated with improved survival. J. Cell. Biochem. 118: 3299-3307, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Bath-PUVA therapy improves impaired resting regulatory T cells and increases activated regulatory T cells in psoriasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubo, Ryoji; Muramatsu, Shinnosuke; Sagawa, Yoko; Saito, Chiyo; Kasuya, Saori; Nishioka, Akiko; Nishida, Emi; Yamazaki, Sayuri; Morita, Akimichi

    2017-04-01

    Bath-psoralen plus ultraviolet light A (PUVA) therapy is an effective, safe, and inexpensive treatment for psoriasis. Psoriasis might be due to an unbalanced ratio of Th17 cells and regulatory T cells (Treg). The Treg functional ratio is significantly lower in patients with psoriasis compared with controls and is inversely correlated with the Psoriasis Area and Severity Index score. We previously reported that bath-PUVA therapy significantly increases the number of Treg and restores Treg function to almost normal in most patients with psoriasis. We examined the effects of bath-PUVA therapy on three distinct Foxp3 + subsets: activated Treg (aTreg), resting Treg (rTreg), and cytokine-secreting non-suppressive T cells. We enrolled 15 patients with psoriasis and 11 healthy controls. We examined aTreg, rTreg, and cytokine-secreting non-suppressive T cells in peripheral blood obtained from the psoriasis patients before and after every fifth bath-PUVA therapy session. Levels of aTreg, which are considered to have the strongest suppressive activity in patients with psoriasis, were significantly increased in the early bath-PUVA therapy sessions, and then diminished. Levels of rTreg were lower in psoriasis patients than in healthy controls, and increased during bath-PUVA therapy. Bath-PUVA therapy induced aTreg and rTreg concomitantly with an improvement in the psoriatic lesions, suggesting a mechanism for the effectiveness of bath-PUVA therapy for psoriasis patients. Copyright © 2017 Japanese Society for Investigative Dermatology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. HIV-Specific ADCC Improves After Antiretroviral Therapy and Correlates With Normalization of the NK Cell Phenotype

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Sanne S; Hartling, Hans J; Tingstedt, Jeanette L

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Natural killer (NK) cell phenotype and function have recently gained much attention as playing crucial roles in antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC). We investigated NK cell function, as measured by ADCC, in HIV-1-positive individuals before and 6 months after highly active...... months. This improvement does not correlate with general immune restoration, as measured by CD4 T-cell counts, but rather to a decrease in the frequency of NK cells expressing CCR7 and CD27....

  15. Exploring viral reservoir: The combining approach of cell sorting and droplet digital PCR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibellini, Lara; Pecorini, Simone; De Biasi, Sara; Pinti, Marcello; Bianchini, Elena; De Gaetano, Anna; Digaetano, Margherita; Pullano, Rosalberta; Lo Tartaro, Domenico; Iannone, Anna; Mussini, Cristina; Cossarizza, Andrea; Nasi, Milena

    2018-02-01

    Combined antiretroviral therapy (cART) blocks different steps of HIV replication and maintains plasma viral RNA at undetectable levels. The virus can remain in long-living cells and create a reservoir where HIV can restart replicating after cART discontinuation. A persistent viral production triggers and maintains a persistent immune activation, which is a well-known feature of chronic HIV infection, and contributes either to precocious aging, or to the increased incidence of morbidity and mortality of HIV positive patients. The new frontier of the treatment of HIV infection is nowadays eradication of the virus from all host cells and tissues. For this reason, it is crucial to have a clear and precise idea of where the virus hides, and which are the cells that keep it silent. Important efforts have been made to improve the detection of viral reservoirs, and new techniques are now giving the opportunity to characterize viral reservoirs. Among these techniques, a strategic approach based upon cell sorting and droplet digital PCR (ddPCR) is opening new horizons and opportunities of research. This review provides an overview of the methods that combine cell sorting and ddPCR for the quantification of HIV DNA in different cell types, and for the detection of its maintenance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Nano-Structured Gratings for Improved Light Absorption Efficiency in Solar Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farzaneh Fadakar Masouleh

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Due to the rising power demand and substantial interest in acquiring green energy from sunlight, there has been rapid development in the science and technology of photovoltaics (PV in the last few decades. Furthermore, the synergy of the fields of metrology and fabrication has paved the way to acquire improved light collecting ability for solar cells. Based on recent studies, the performance of solar cell can improve due to the application of subwavelength nano-structures which results in smaller reflection losses and better light manipulation and/or trapping at subwavelength scale. In this paper, we propose a numerical optimization technique to analyze the reflection losses on an optimized GaAs-based solar cell which is covered with nano-structured features from the same material. Using the finite difference time domain (FDTD method, we have designed, modelled, and analyzed the performance of three different arrangements of periodic nano-structures with different pitches and heights. The simulated results confirmed that different geometries of nano-structures behave uniquely towards the impinging light.

  17. Ultrathin high band gap solar cells with improved efficiencies from the world's oldest photovoltaic material.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todorov, Teodor K; Singh, Saurabh; Bishop, Douglas M; Gunawan, Oki; Lee, Yun Seog; Gershon, Talia S; Brew, Kevin W; Antunez, Priscilla D; Haight, Richard

    2017-09-25

    Selenium was used in the first solid state solar cell in 1883 and gave early insights into the photoelectric effect that inspired Einstein's Nobel Prize work; however, the latest efficiency milestone of 5.0% was more than 30 years ago. The recent surge of interest towards high-band gap absorbers for tandem applications led us to reconsider this attractive 1.95 eV material. Here, we show completely redesigned selenium devices with improved back and front interfaces optimized through combinatorial studies and demonstrate record open-circuit voltage (V OC ) of 970 mV and efficiency of 6.5% under 1 Sun. In addition, Se devices are air-stable, non-toxic, and extremely simple to fabricate. The absorber layer is only 100 nm thick, and can be processed at 200 ˚C, allowing temperature compatibility with most bottom substrates or sub-cells. We analyze device limitations and find significant potential for further improvement making selenium an attractive high-band-gap absorber for multi-junction device applications.Wide band gap semiconductors are important for the development of tandem photovoltaics. By introducing buffer layers at the front and rear side of solar cells based on selenium; Todorov et al., reduce interface recombination losses to achieve photoconversion efficiencies of 6.5%.

  18. Improvement in direct methanol fuel cell performance by treating the anode at high anodic potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joghee, Prabhuram; Pylypenko, Svitlana; Wood, Kevin; Corpuz, April; Bender, Guido; Dinh, Huyen N.; O'Hayre, Ryan

    2014-01-01

    This work investigates the effect of a high anodic potential treatment protocol on the performance of a direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC). DMFC membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs) with PtRu/C (Hi-spec 5000) anode catalyst are subjected to anodic treatment (AT) at 0.8 V vs. DHE using potentiostatic method. Despite causing a slight decrease in the electrochemical surface area (ECSA) of the anode, associated with ruthenium dissolution, AT results in significant improvement in DMFC performance in the ohmic and mass transfer regions and increases the maximum power density by ∼15%. Furthermore, AT improves the long-term DMFC stability by reducing the degradation of the anode catalyst. From XPS investigation, it is hypothesized that the improved performance of AT-treated MEAs is related to an improved interface between the catalyst and Nafion ionomer. Among potential explanations, this improvement may be caused by incorporation of the ionomer within the secondary pores of PtRu/C agglomerates, which generates a percolating network of ionomer between PtRu/C agglomerates in the catalyst layer. Furthermore, the decreased concentration of hydrophobic CF2 groups may help to enhance the hydrophilicity of the catalyst layer, thereby increasing the accessibility of methanol and resulting in better performance in the high current density region.

  19. Improving Performance of CIGS Solar Cells by Annealing ITO Thin Films Electrodes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chuan Lung Chuang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Indium tin oxide (ITO thin films were grown on glass substrates by direct current (DC reactive magnetron sputtering at room temperature. Annealing at the optimal temperature can considerably improve the composition, structure, optical properties, and electrical properties of the ITO film. An ITO sample with a favorable crystalline structure was obtained by annealing in fixed oxygen/argon ratio of 0.03 at 400°C for 30 min. The carrier concentration, mobility, resistivity, band gap, transmission in the visible-light region, and transmission in the near-IR regions of the ITO sample were -1.6E+20 cm−3, 2.7E+01 cm2/Vs, 1.4E-03 Ohm-cm, 3.2 eV, 89.1%, and 94.7%, respectively. Thus, annealing improved the average transmissions (400–1200 nm of the ITO film by 16.36%. Moreover, annealing a copper-indium-gallium-diselenide (CIGS solar cell at 400°C for 30 min in air improved its efficiency by 18.75%. The characteristics of annealing ITO films importantly affect the structural, morphological, electrical, and optical properties of ITO films that are used in solar cells.

  20. Butyrate, a dietary fiber derivative that improves irinotecan effect in colon cancer cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Encarnação, João Crispim; Pires, Ana Salomé; Amaral, Renata Alexandra; Gonçalves, Telmo José; Laranjo, Mafalda; Casalta-Lopes, João Eduardo; Gonçalves, Ana Cristina; Sarmento-Ribeiro, Ana Bela; Abrantes, Ana Margarida; Botelho, Maria Filomena

    2018-03-03

    A diet rich in fiber is associated with a low risk of developing colorectal cancer. Dietary fiber fermentation by intestinal microflora results in the production of butyrate, which has been reported as a chemopreventive agent and a histone deacetylase inhibitor (HDACi). Irinotecan is used as second-line treatment and induces adverse effects with serious life-threatening toxicities in at least 36% of patients. Our study intends to find a synergy that could improve the efficacy and decrease the toxicity of chemotherapy. Results demonstrate that milimolar concentrations of butyrate has an anti-proliferative effect in all three colon cancer cell lines under study, leading to a decrease on cell viability, expression of P21, P53 and β-catenin, being able to modulate P-glycoprotein activity and to induce apoptosis by modulation of BAX/BCL-2 ratio. Combined therapy has a cytotoxic potential, resulting in a synergistic effect, and allows a reduction in irinotecan concentration needed to reduce IC 50 . This potential was verified in terms of cell viability and death, cell cycle and expression of P21 and P53. Butyrate and irinotecan act synergistically in the three cancer cell lines, despite the different genetic background and location, and inhibited tumor growth in a xenograft model. Butyrate is able to influence the mechanism of LS1034 cell line chemoresistance. Butyrate in combination with chemotherapeutic agents has an important role for the treatment of colorectal cancer. Such understanding can guide decisions about which patients with colorectal cancer may benefit from therapy with butyrate demonstrating the important role of diet in colorectal cancer treatment. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  1. Improve the performance of CZTSSe solar cells by applying a SnS BSF layer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omrani, Mir Kazem; Minbashi, Mehran; Memarian, Nafiseh; Kim, Dae-Hwan

    2018-03-01

    In this study, the CZTSSe (Cu2ZnSn(S,Se)4) solar cells, with Al/ZnO:Al/ZnO (i)/CdS/CZTSSe/Mo structure, have been simulated. The simulation results have been compared and validated with real experimental results. Next, suggestions for improving the performance of CZTSSe solar cell have been provided. A SnS layer has been used as back surface field (BSF) layer. Different physical parameters of SnS layer are investigated, and the optimum values are selected. It has been found that by inserting a BSF layer with optimum parameters, the efficiency of CZTSSe solar cell increases from 12.3% to 17.25% due to enhancement of both short-circuit current density (Jsc) and open circuit voltage (Voc). For this optimized cell structure, the maximum Jsc = 37.37 mA/cm2, Voc = 0.605 V, and fill factor = 76.28% are obtained under 1.5 AM illumination.

  2. Fine and Predictable Tuning of TALEN Gene Editing Targeting for Improved T Cell Adoptive Immunotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gautron, Anne-Sophie; Juillerat, Alexandre; Guyot, Valérie; Filhol, Jean-Marie; Dessez, Emilie; Duclert, Aymeric; Duchateau, Philippe; Poirot, Laurent

    2017-12-15

    Using a TALEN-mediated gene-editing approach, we have previously described a process for the large-scale manufacturing of "off-the-shelf" CAR T cells from third-party donor T cells by disrupting the gene encoding TCRα constant chain (TRAC). Taking advantage of a previously described strategy to control TALEN targeting based on the exclusion capacities of non-conventional RVDs, we have developed highly efficient and specific nucleases targeting a key T cell immune checkpoint, PD-1, to improve engineered CAR T cells' functionalities. Here, we demonstrate that this approach allows combined TRAC and PDCD1 TALEN processing at the desired locus while eliminating low-frequency off-site processing. Thus, by replacing few RVDs, we provide here an easy and rapid redesign of optimal TALEN combinations. We anticipate that this method can greatly benefit multiplex editing, which is of key importance especially for therapeutic applications where high editing efficiencies need to be associated with maximal specificity and safety. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Improved mass-measurement accuracy using a PNB Load Cell Scale

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suda, S.; Pontius, P.; Schoonover, R.

    1981-08-01

    The PNB Load Cell Scale is a Preloaded, Narrow-Band calibration mass comparator. It consists of (1) a frame and servo-mechanism that maintains a preload tension on the load cell until the load, an unknown mass, is sensed, and (2) a null-balance digital instrument that suppresses the cell response associated with the preload, thereby improving the precision and accuracy of the measurements. Ideally, the objects used to set the preload should be replica mass standards that closely approximate the density and mass of the unknowns. The advantages of the PNB scale are an expanded output signal over the range of interest which increases both the sensitivity and resolution, and minimizes the transient effects associated with loading of load cells. An area of immediate and practical application of this technique to nuclear material safeguards is the weighing of UF 6 cyliners where in-house mass standards are currently available and where the mass values are typically assigned on the basis of comparison weighings. Several prototypical versions of the PNB scale have been assembled at the US National Bureau of Standards. A description of the instrumentation, principles of measurements, and applications are presented in this paper

  4. Stem Cells as a Tool to Improve Outcomes of Islet Transplantation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily Sims

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The publication of the promising results of the Edmonton protocol in 2000 generated optimism for islet transplantation as a potential cure for Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus. Unfortunately, follow-up data revealed that less than 10% of patients achieved long-term insulin independence. More recent data from other large trials like the Collaborative Islet Transplant Registry show incremental improvement with 44% of islet transplant recipients maintaining insulin independence at three years of follow-up. Multiple underlying issues have been identified that contribute to islet graft failure, and newer research has attempted to address these problems. Stem cells have been utilized not only as a functional replacement for β cells, but also as companion or supportive cells to address a variety of different obstacles that prevent ideal graft viability and function. In this paper, we outline the manners in which stem cells have been applied to address barriers to the achievement of long-term insulin independence following islet transplantation.

  5. Mechanism of Degradation and Improvement of Stability on Mesogenic-Phthalocyanine-Based Bulk Heterojunction Solar Cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duy Dao, Quang; Hori, Tetsuro; Masuda, Tetsuya; Fukumura, Kaoru; Kamikado, Toshiya; Nekelson, Fabien; Fujii, Akihiko; Shimizu, Yo; Ozaki, Masanori

    2013-01-01

    The stability of bulk heterojunction organic solar cells utilizing the phthalocyanine derivative 1,4,8,11,15,18,22,25-octahexylphthalocyanine (C6PcH2) and the fullerene derivative 1-(3-methoxy-carbonyl)-propyl-1-1-phenyl-(6,6)C61 has been studied. In the same environment, C6PcH2-based cells have shown higher stability than the cells fabricated using the conventional donor material poly(3-hexylthiophene). Furthermore, the degradation mechanisms of these solar cells have been investigated. It was found that the chemical bonds of two pyrrole aza nitrogens as well as the four mesobridging aza nitrogens with neighboring carbons in the C6PcH2 molecule were broken after irradiation with a solar simulator, which affected the device lifetime. To improve the stability, various buffer layers have been deposited between the counterelectrode and the active layer. Obviously, the C60 thin film and the oxidized layer play an important role as blocking layers that prevent the diffusion of metal atoms into the active layer, resulting in the higher stability.

  6. Human Mesenchymal Stromal Cells Improve Cardiac Perfusion in an Ovine Immunocompetent Animal Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dayan, Victor; Sotelo, Veronica; Delfina, Valentina; Delgado, Natalia; Rodriguez, Carlos; Suanes, Carol; Langhain, María; Ferrando, Rodolfo; Keating, Armand; Benech, Alejandro; Touriño, Cristina

    2016-08-01

    Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) hold considerable promise in the treatment of ischemic heart disease. Most preclinical studies of MSCs for acute myocardial infarction (AMI) have been performed either in syngeneic animal models or with human cells in xenogeneic immunodeficient animals. A preferable pre-clinical model, however, would involve human MSCs in an immunocompetent animal. AMI was generated in adult sheep by inducing ischemia reperfusion of the second diagonal branch. Sheep (n = 10) were randomized to receive an intravenous injection of human MSCs (1 × 10(6) cells/kg) or phosphate buffered saline. Cardiac function and remodeling were evaluated with echocardiography. Perfusion scintigraphy was used to identify sustained myocardial ischemia. Interaction between human MSCs and ovine lymphocytes was assessed by a mixed lymphocyte response (MLR). Sheep receiving human MSCs showed significant improvement in myocardial perfusion at 1 month compared with baseline measurements. There was no change in ventricular dimensions in either group after 1 month of AMI. No adverse events or symptoms were observed in the sheep receiving human MSCs. The MLR was negative. The immunocompetent ovine AMI model demonstrates the clinical safety and efficacy of human MSCs. The human cells do not appear to be immunogenic, further suggesting that immunocompetent sheep may serve as a suitable pre-clinical large animal model for testing human MSCs.

  7. Does injection of metanephric mesenchymal cells improve renal function in rats?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu-qing Jiao

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Chronic kidney disease (CKD is a massive global health-care problem. Cell therapy offers a potential treatment for CKD. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the administration of a population of stem cells could be used to treat adriamycin (ADR-induced glomerulopathy in rats, a form of CKD. We intravenously transplanted metanephric mesenchymal cells (MMCs into rats treated with ADR. We also induced MMC differentiation in vitro using a medium derived from serum and homogenates of ADR-induced glomerulopathy rats. We detected the induction of an early epithelial phenotype (cytokeratin-18 expression and a proximal tubule phenotype (vitamin D receptor expression in vitro, and MMC-derived epithelial cells corresponding to the proximal tubule and glomeruli in vivo. Transplantation of MMCs after induction of glomerulopathy significantly increased the creatinine clearance rate (Ccr, a marker for glomerular filtration rate, but had no significant effect on other parameters (24-hour urinary protein excretion, serum albumin, total cholesterol. In addition, there was no significant difference in blood urea nitrogen or serum creatinine levels in rats with and without ADR administration. Our results indicate that MMCs might survive, engraft and differentiate into renal epithelia in vivo when transplanted into ADR-treated rats. However, further studies are needed to determine whether MMC transplantation improves renal function and causes renal repair in this model.

  8. Novel Strategies for the Improvement of Stem Cells' Transplantation in Degenerative Retinal Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicoară, Simona Delia; Șușman, Sergiu; Tudoran, Oana; Bărbos, Otilia; Cherecheș, Gabriela; Aștilean, Simion; Potara, Monica; Sorițău, Olga

    2016-01-01

    Currently, there is no cure for the permanent vision loss caused by degenerative retinal diseases. One of the novel therapeutic strategies aims at the development of stem cells (SCs) based neuroprotective and regenerative medicine. The main sources of SCs for the treatment of retinal diseases are the embryo, the bone marrow, the region of neuronal genesis, and the eye. The success of transplantation depends on the origin of cells, the route of administration, the local microenvironment, and the proper combinative formula of growth factors. The feasibility of SCs based therapies for degenerative retinal diseases was proved in the preclinical setting. However, their translation into the clinical realm is limited by various factors: the immunogenicity of the cells, the stability of the cell phenotype, the predilection of SCs to form tumors in situ, the abnormality of the microenvironment, and the association of a synaptic rewiring. To improve SCs based therapies, nanotechnology offers a smart delivery system for biomolecules, such as growth factors for SCs implantation and differentiation into retinal progenitors. This review explores the main advances in the field of retinal transplantology and applications of nanotechnology in the treatment of retinal diseases, discusses the challenges, and suggests new therapeutic approaches in retinal transplantation. PMID:27293444

  9. Barium titanate nanoparticles and hypergravity stimulation improve differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells into osteoblasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocca, Antonella; Marino, Attilio; Rocca, Veronica; Moscato, Stefania; de Vito, Giuseppe; Piazza, Vincenzo; Mazzolai, Barbara; Mattoli, Virgilio; Ngo-Anh, Thu Jennifer; Ciofani, Gianni

    2015-01-01

    Enhancement of the osteogenic potential of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) is highly desirable in the field of bone regeneration. This paper proposes a new approach for the improvement of osteogenesis combining hypergravity with osteoinductive nanoparticles (NPs). In this study, we aimed to investigate the combined effects of hypergravity and barium titanate NPs (BTNPs) on the osteogenic differentiation of rat MSCs, and the hypergravity effects on NP internalization. To obtain the hypergravity condition, we used a large-diameter centrifuge in the presence of a BTNP-doped culture medium. We analyzed cell morphology and NP internalization with immunofluorescent staining and coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering, respectively. Moreover, cell differentiation was evaluated both at the gene level with quantitative real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction and at the protein level with Western blotting. Following a 20 g treatment, we found alterations in cytoskeleton conformation, cellular shape and morphology, as well as a significant increment of expression of osteoblastic markers both at the gene and protein levels, jointly pointing to a substantial increment of NP uptake. Taken together, our findings suggest a synergistic effect of hypergravity and BTNPs in the enhancement of the osteogenic differentiation of MSCs. The obtained results could become useful in the design of new approaches in bone-tissue engineering, as well as for in vitro drug-delivery strategies where an increment of nanocarrier internalization could result in a higher drug uptake by cell and/or tissue constructs.

  10. Experimental Study on Improvement of Performance by Wave Form Cathode Channels in a PEM Fuel Cell

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sun-Joon Byun

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available We propose a wave-like design on the surface of cathode channels (wave form cathode channels to improve oxidant delivery to gas diffusion layers (GDLs. We performed experiments using proton-exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs combined with wave form surface design on cathodes. We varied the factors of the distance between wave-bumps (the adhesive distance, AD, and the size of the wave-bumps (the expansion ratio, ER. The ADs are three, four, and five times the size of the half-circle bump’s radius, and the ERs are two-thirds, one-half, and one-third of the channel’s height. We evaluated the performances of the fuel cells, and compared the current-voltage (I-V relations. For comparison, we prepared PEMFCs with conventional flat-surfaced oxygen channels. Our aim in this work is to identify fuel cell operation by modifying the surface design of channels, and ultimately to find the optimal design of cathode channels that will maximize fuel cell performance.

  11. Formação do enfermeiro para detecção precoce de desvios psicomotores em lactentes - Fortaleza, estado do Ceará, Brasil - DOI: 10.4025/actascihealthsci.v25i2.2230 Nurse formation for precocious detection of psychomotor deviations in suckling - Fortaleza, state of Ceará, Brazil - DOI: 10.4025/actascihealthsci.v25i2.2230

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Teresa Moreno Valdés

    2003-04-01

    Full Text Available Objetivou-se identificar a formação dos enfermeiros para detecção precoce dos desvios psicomotores em lactentes, os fatores que interferem na atuação profissional e elaborar um roteiro para subsidiá-lo. Trata-se de estudo exploratório-descritivo realizado em cinco Unidades do Programa de Saúde da Família (Fortaleza - CE. Foram entrevistados 17 enfermeiros que realizam consulta em puericultura. A coleta dos dados ocorreu de julho a outubro de 2001, por meio de observação e entrevista semi - estruturada. Os dados foram analisados, discutidos e apresentados por meio de Tabelas. Onze enfermeiros consideram-se despreparados para a detecção precoce de tais desvios. Os obstáculos apontados foram: falta de treinamento, tempo reduzido para aperfeiçoamento e carga horária excessiva de trabalho. Os enfermeiros sugerem aperfeiçoamento profissional, associado à melhoria das condições de trabalho e aquisição de material didático e audiovisual para implementação de programas preventivos. Conclui-se ser necessária a implementação de um plano com ações que capacitem o enfermeiro para a detecção precoce desses desvios.This paper aimed to identify nurses formation for precocious detection of psychomotor deviations in suckling, the factors that interfere in their performance and to make a proposal of a schedule to subsidize them. Exploratory-descriptive study was carried out in five Units of Family Health Program, in the city of Fortaleza, state of Ceará, Brazil. Seventeen nurses who had accomplished consultation in puericulture were interviewed. Data were collected from July to October 2001, through observation and semi-structured interview. The data were analyzed, debated, and presented through tables. Eleven nurses considered themselves unprepared for precocious identification of such deviations. The obstacles pointed were: insufficient training, reduced time to improvement and excessive work routine. The nurses suggest the

  12. Dynamic focus optical coherence tomography: feasibility for improved basal cell carcinoma investigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nasiri-Avanaki, M. R.; Aber, Ahmed; Hojjatoleslami, S. A.; Sira, Mano; Schofield, John B.; Jones, Carole; Podoleanu, A. Gh.

    2012-03-01

    Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common form of skin cancer. To improve the diagnostic accuracy, additional non-invasive methods of making a preliminary diagnosis have been sought. We have implemented an En-Face optical coherence tomography (OCT) for this study in which the dynamic focus was integrated into it. With the dynamic focus scheme, the coherence gate moves synchronously with the peak of confocal gate determined by the confocal interface optics. The transversal resolution is then conserved throughout the depth range and an enhanced signal is returned from all depths. The Basal Cell Carcinoma specimens were obtained from the eyelid a patient. The specimens under went analysis by DF-OCT imaging. We searched for remarkable features that were visualized by OCT and compared these findings with features presented in the histology slices.

  13. Improvement in cell proliferation on silicone rubber by carbon nanotube coating.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsuoka, Makoto; Akasaka, Tsukasa; Hashimoto, Takeshi; Totsuka, Yasunori; Watari, Fumio

    2009-01-01

    Silicone rubbers are widely used as tissue implants because of their flexibility and chemical stability. However, they have limited cellular adhesiveness and may cause problems in the long term. In this study, a coating of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) was applied to silicone rubber to improve its cellular adhesiveness. Scanning electron micrograph of this coating revealed that CNTs had formed a densely packed meshwork; the Ra values and protein adsorption capacity were enhanced. Although the contact angle did not change after coating, it decreased after immersion into a culture medium. After cultivation for 6 d, while Saos-2 cells were hardly observed on untreated silicone, the cells proliferated on CNT-coated silicone. Thus, CNT coating might be a simple and effective solution to problems associated with silicone implants.

  14. Reliable B cell epitope predictions: impacts of method development and improved benchmarking

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kringelum, Jens Vindahl; Lundegaard, Claus; Lund, Ole

    2012-01-01

    evaluation data set improved from 0.712 to 0.727. Our results thus demonstrate that given proper benchmark definitions, B-cell epitope prediction methods achieve highly significant predictive performances suggesting these tools to be a powerful asset in rational epitope discovery. The updated version...... biomedical applications such as; rational vaccine design, development of disease diagnostics and immunotherapeutics. However, experimental mapping of epitopes is resource intensive making in silico methods an appealing complementary approach. To date, the reported performance of methods for in silico mapping...... of B-cell epitopes has been moderate. Several issues regarding the evaluation data sets may however have led to the performance values being underestimated: Rarely, all potential epitopes have been mapped on an antigen, and antibodies are generally raised against the antigen in a given biological...

  15. Investigation of Micro- and Macro-Scale Transport Processes for Improved Fuel Cell Performance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gu, Wenbin [General Motors LLC, Pontiac, MI (United States)

    2014-08-29

    This report documents the work performed by General Motors (GM) under the Cooperative agreement No. DE-EE0000470, “Investigation of Micro- and Macro-Scale Transport Processes for Improved Fuel Cell Performance,” in collaboration with the Penn State University (PSU), University of Tennessee Knoxville (UTK), Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), and University of Rochester (UR) via subcontracts. The overall objectives of the project are to investigate and synthesize fundamental understanding of transport phenomena at both the macro- and micro-scales for the development of a down-the-channel model that accounts for all transport domains in a broad operating space. GM as a prime contractor focused on cell level experiments and modeling, and the Universities as subcontractors worked toward fundamental understanding of each component and associated interface.

  16. Further Improvement and System Integration of High Temperature Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Li, Qingfeng; Jensen, Jens Oluf

    The new development in the field of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) is high temperature PEMFC for operation above 100°C, which has been successfully demonstrated through the previous EC Joule III and the 5th framework programme. New challenges are encountered, bottlenecks for the new...... are to be developed and integrated with the stack. The key issue of the project is development and improvement of the temperature-resistant polymer membranes with respect to durability, conductivity, mechanical and other properties. For this purpose, basic polymers will be first synthesized and optimized. Different...... routes to functionalize the polymers will be explored to increate proton conductivity. By the development of advanced materials, demonstration of the high temperature PEMFC stack and integration of such a system, FURIM is expected to sufficiently promote the commercialisation of the fuel cell technology...

  17. A Cell-Enriched Engineered Myocardial Graft Limits Infarct Size and Improves Cardiac Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isaac Perea-Gil, MS

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Myocardial infarction (MI remains a dreadful disease around the world, causing irreversible sequelae that shorten life expectancy and reduce quality of life despite current treatment. Here, the authors engineered a cell-enriched myocardial graft, composed of a decellularized myocardial matrix refilled with adipose tissue-derived progenitor cells (EMG-ATDPC. Once applied over the infarcted area in the swine MI model, the EMG-ATDPC improved cardiac function, reduced infarct size, attenuated fibrosis progression, and promoted neovascularization of the ischemic myocardium. The beneficial effects exerted by the EMG-ATDPC and the absence of identified adverse side effects should facilitate its clinical translation as a novel MI therapy in humans.

  18. Delivery of viral vectors to tumor cells: extracellular transport, systemic distribution, and strategies for improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yong; Yuan, Fan

    2006-01-01

    It is a challenge to deliver therapeutic genes to tumor cells using viral vectors because (i) the size of these vectors are close to or larger than the space between fibers in extracellular matrix and (ii) viral proteins are potentially toxic in normal tissues. In general, gene delivery is hindered by various physiological barriers to virus transport from the site of injection to the nucleus of tumor cells and is limited by normal tissue tolerance of toxicity determined by local concentrations of transgene products and viral proteins. To illustrate the obstacles encountered in the delivery and yet limit the scope of discussion, this review focuses only on extracellular transport in solid tumors and distribution of viral vectors in normal organs after they are injected intravenously or intratumorally. This review also discusses current strategies for improving intratumoral transport and specificity of viral vectors.

  19. Transplantation of dental pulp stem cells improves long-term diabetic polyneuropathy together with improvement of nerve morphometrical evaluation

    OpenAIRE

    Omi, Maiko; Hata, Masaki; Nakamura, Nobuhisa; Miyabe, Megumi; Ozawa, Shogo; Nukada, Hitoshi; Tsukamoto, Masami; Sango, Kazunori; Himeno, Tatsuhito; Kamiya, Hideki; Nakamura, Jiro; Takebe, Jun; Matsubara, Tatsuaki; Naruse, Keiko

    2017-01-01

    Background Although previous reports have revealed the therapeutic potential of stem cell transplantation in diabetic polyneuropathy, the effects of cell transplantation on long-term diabetic polyneuropathy have not been investigated. In this study, we investigated whether the transplantation of dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) ameliorated long-term diabetic polyneuropathy in streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats. Methods Forty-eight weeks after STZ injection, we transplanted DPSCs into th...

  20. Mesenchymal stromal (stem cell therapy fails to improve outcomes in experimental severe influenza.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilyse Darwish

    Full Text Available RATIONALE: Severe influenza remains a major public health threat and is responsible for thousands of deaths annually. Increasing antiviral resistance and limited effectiveness of current therapies highlight the need for new approaches to influenza treatment. Extensive pre-clinical data have shown that mesenchymal stromal (stem cell (MSC therapy can induce anti-inflammatory effects and enhance repair of the injured lung. We hypothesized that MSC therapy would improve survival, dampen lung inflammation and decrease acute lung injury (ALI in a murine model of severe influenza. METHODS: C57Bl/6 mice were infected with influenza A/PuertoRico/8/34 (mouse-adapted H1N1 or influenza A/Mexico/4108/2009 (swine-origin pandemic H1N1 and administered human or mouse MSCs via the tail vein, either pre- or post- infection. MSC efficacy was evaluated as both an independent and adjunctive treatment strategy in combination with the antiviral agent, oseltamivir. Weight loss and survival were monitored. Inflammatory cells, cytokine/chemokines (IFN-γ, CXCL10, CCL2 and CCL5 and markers of ALI (total protein and IgM, were measured in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and lung parenchyma. RESULTS: Administration of murine MSCs or human MSCs in a prophylactic or therapeutic regimen failed to improve survival, decrease pulmonary inflammation/inflammatory cell counts or prevent ALI in influenza virus-infected mice. MSCs administered in combination with oseltamivir also failed to improve outcomes. CONCLUSIONS: Despite similarities in the clinical presentation and pathobiology of ALI and severe influenza, our findings suggest that MSC therapy may not be effective for prevention and/or treatment of acute severe influenza.

  1. Efficiency improvement of multicrystalline silicon solar cells after surface and grain boundaries passivation using vanadium oxide

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Derbali, L.; Ezzaouia, H.

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► Evaporation of vanadium pentoxide onto the front surface leads to reduce the surface reflectivity considerably. ► An efficient surface passivation can be obtained after thermal treatment of obtained films. ► Efficiency of the obtained solar cells has been improved noticeably after thermal treatment of deposited thin films. - Abstract: The aim of this work is to investigate the effect of vanadium oxide deposition onto the front surface of multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) substrat, without any additional cost in the fabrication process and leading to an efficient surface and grain boundaries (GBs) passivation that have not been reported before. The lowest reflectance of mc-Si coated with vanadium oxide film of 9% was achieved by annealing the deposited film at 600 °C. Vanadium pentoxide (V 2 O 5 ) were thermally evaporated onto the surface of mc-Si substrates, followed by a short annealing duration at a temperature ranging between 600 °C and 800 °C, under O 2 atmosphere. The chemical composition of the films was analyzed by means of Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). Surface and cross-section morphology were determined by atomic force microscope (AFM) and a scanning electron microscope (SEM), respectively. The deposited vanadium oxide thin films make the possibility of combining in one processing step an antireflection coating deposition along with efficient surface state passivation, as compared to a reference wafer. Silicon solar cells based on untreated and treated mc-Si wafers were achieved. We showed that mc-silicon solar cells, subjected to the above treatment, have better short circuit currents and open-circuit voltages than those made from untreated wafers. Thus, the efficiency of obtained solar cells has been improved.

  2. Cell-based therapy improves function in adolescents and young adults with patellar osteochondritis dissecans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teo, Bryon J X; Buhary, Kizher; Tai, Bee-Choo; Hui, James H

    2013-04-01

    Recent advances have been made in using chondrocytes and other cell-based therapy to treat cartilage defects in adults. However, it is unclear whether these advances should be extended to the adolescent and young adult-aged patients. We assessed cell-based surgical therapy for patellar osteochondritis dissecans (OCD) in adolescents and young adults by (1) determining function with the International Knee Documentation Committee (IKDC) subjective and Lysholm-Gillquist scores; and (2) evaluating activity level using the Tegner-Lysholm scale. We retrospectively reviewed 23 patients between 12 and 21 years of age (mean 16.8 years) treated for OCD lesions involving the patella from 2001 to 2008. Twenty patients had autologous chondrocyte implantation and three patients had cultured bone marrow stem cell implantation. There were 19 males and four females. We obtained preoperative CT scans to assess patella subluxation, tilt, and congruence angle to determine choice of treatment. We obtained IKDC subjective knee evaluation scores, Tegner-Lysholm activity levels, and Lysholm-Gillquist knee scores preoperatively and at 6, 12, and 24 months postoperatively. Mean IKDC score, Tegner-Lysholm outcomes, and Lysholm-Gillquist scale improved from 45, 2.5, and 50, respectively, at surgery to 75, 4, and 70, respectively, at 24-month followup. Complications include periosteal hypertrophy observed in two patients. Cell-based therapy was associated with short-term improvement in function in adolescents and young adults with patellar OCD. Level IV, therapeutic study. See Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.

  3. Plasma based platinum nanoaggregates deposited on carbon nanofibers improve fuel cell efficiency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caillard, Amaël; Charles, Christine; Boswell, Rod; Brault, Pascal; Coutanceau, Christophe

    2007-05-01

    Improved platinum catalytic utilization has been achieved by creating an open support structure based on aligned carbon nanofibers (CNFs) attached to carbon loaded carbon cloth electrodes [known as gas diffusion layer (GDL)]. The nickel catalyst used to initiate the CNFs growth; the CNFs themselves and the 5nm Pt nanoaggregates were deposited sequentially in the same low pressure plasma reactor. This oriented catalyst structure was incorporated into a membrane electrode assembly and tested with and without CNFs and on carbon paper or GDL. The performance of the fuel cells based on CNFs and GDL was better over the entire range of operating current.

  4. In situ synthesis of nanocomposite membranes: comprehensive improvement strategy for direct methanol fuel cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Siyuan; Xiu, Ruijie; Si, Jiangju; Lu, Shanfu; Yang, Meng; Xiang, Yan

    2014-03-01

    In situ synthesis is a powerful approach to control nanoparticle formation and consequently confers extraordinary properties upon composite membranes relative to conventional doping methods. Herein, uniform nanoparticles of cesium hydrogen salts of phosphotungstic acid (CsPW) are controllably synthesized in situ in Nafion to form CsPW–Nafion nanocomposite membranes with both improved proton conductivity and methanol-crossover suppression. A 101.3% increase of maximum power density has been achieved relative to pristine Nafion in a direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC), indicating a potential pathway for large-scale fabrication of DMFC alternative membranes.

  5. Long-Term Engraftment of Primary Bone Marrow Stromal Cells Repairs Niche Damage and Improves Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbuehl, Jean-Paul; Tatarova, Zuzana; Held, Werner; Huelsken, Joerg

    2017-08-03

    Hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) transplantation represents a curative treatment for various hematological disorders. However, delayed reconstitution of innate and adaptive immunity often causes fatal complications. HSC maintenance and lineage differentiation are supported by stromal niches, and we now find that bone marrow stroma cells (BMSCs) are severely and permanently damaged by the pre-conditioning irradiation required for efficient HSC transplantation. Using mouse models, we show that stromal insufficiency limits the number of donor-derived HSCs and B lymphopoiesis. Intra-bone transplantation of primary, but not cultured, BMSCs quantitatively reconstitutes stroma function in vivo, which is mediated by a multipotent NT5E + (CD73) + ENG - (CD105) - LY6A + (SCA1) + BMSC subpopulation. BMSC co-transplantation doubles the number of functional, donor-derived HSCs and significantly reduces clinically relevant side effects associated with HSC transplantation including neutropenia and humoral immunodeficiency. These data demonstrate the potential of stroma recovery to improve HSC transplantation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Improved staining method for determining the extent of thermal damage to cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherwood, Margaret E; Flotte, Thomas J

    2007-02-01

    Enzyme histochemical stains of frozen sections have been used by investigators to assess thermal damage. The assessment of thermal damage to cells in lipid-rich tissues such as subcutaneous tissue and sebaceous glands can be difficult due to the quality of frozen sections of such tissues. The purpose of this study is to develop an improved method for this type of evaluation. Thick frozen sections of thermally damaged pig and human skin were stained for lactate dehydrogenase. The sections were fixed in formalin and processed for paraffin-embedded sections. The sections showed well-defined localization of the enzymatic deposits as well as preservation of the tissue architecture. The paraffin-embedded lactate dehydrogenase stained sections provide improved evaluation of thermally damaged tissues, particularly the lipid rich tissues. (c) 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  7. Improving Cardiac Action Potential Measurements: 2D and 3D Cell Culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daily, Neil J; Yin, Yue; Kemanli, Pinar; Ip, Brian; Wakatsuki, Tetsuro

    2015-11-01

    Progress in the development of assays for measuring cardiac action potential is crucial for the discovery of drugs for treating cardiac disease and assessing cardiotoxicity. Recently, high-throughput methods for assessing action potential using induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) derived cardiomyocytes in both two-dimensional monolayer cultures and three-dimensional tissues have been developed. We describe an improved method for assessing cardiac action potential using an ultra-fast cost-effective plate reader with commercially available dyes. Our methods improve dramatically the detection of the fluorescence signal from these dyes and make way for the development of more high-throughput methods for cardiac drug discovery and cardiotoxicity.

  8. An Improved Fruit Fly Optimization Algorithm Inspired from Cell Communication Mechanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chuncai Xiao

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Fruit fly optimization algorithm (FOA invented recently is a new swarm intelligence method based on fruit fly’s foraging behaviors and has been shown to be competitive with existing evolutionary algorithms, such as particle swarm optimization (PSO algorithm. However, there are still some disadvantages in the FOA, such as low convergence precision, easily trapped in a local optimum value at the later evolution stage. This paper presents an improved FOA based on the cell communication mechanism (CFOA, by considering the information of the global worst, mean, and best solutions into the search strategy to improve the exploitation. The results from a set of numerical benchmark functions show that the CFOA outperforms the FOA and the PSO in most of the experiments. Further, the CFOA is applied to optimize the controller for preoxidation furnaces in carbon fibers production. Simulation results demonstrate the effectiveness of the CFOA.

  9. Design of artificial red blood cells using polymeric hydrogel microcapsules: hydrogel stability improvement and polymer selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Wujie; Bissen, Matthew J; Savela, Emily S; Clausen, Joshua N; Fredricks, Samantha J; Guo, Xiaoru; Paquin, Zachary R; Dohn, Ryan P; Pavelich, Ian J; Polovchak, Alec L; Wedemeyer, Michael J; Shilling, Brock E; Dufner, Emily N; O'Donnell, Anna C; Rubio, Gerardo; Readnour, Logan R; Brown, Tyler F; Lee, Jung C; Kaltchev, Matey G; Chen, Junhong; Tritt, Charles S

    2016-11-16

    To improve the stability of pectin-oligochitosan hydrogel microcapsules under physiological conditions. Two different approaches were examined: change of the cross-linker length and treatment of the hydrogel microcapsules with 150 Mm CaCl2. Replacement of pectin with alginate was also studied. It was observed that the molecular weight of the cross-linker oligochiotsan had no significant improvement on microcapsule stability. On the other hand, the treatment of pectin-oligochitosan microcapsules with Ca2+ increased the microcapsule stability significantly. Different types of alginate were used; however, no red-blood-cell-shaped microcapsules could be produced, which is likely due to the charge-density difference between deprotonated pectin and alginate polymers.

  10. Engineering the Pichia pastoris methanol oxidation pathway for improved NADH regeneration during whole-cell biotransformation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroer, Kirsten; Peter Luef, Klaus; Stefan Hartner, Franz; Glieder, Anton; Pscheidt, Beate

    2010-01-01

    Industrial biocatalytic reduction processes require the efficient regeneration of reduced cofactors for the asymmetric reduction of prochiral compounds to chiral intermediates which are needed for the production of fine chemicals and drugs. Here, we present a new engineering strategy for improved NADH regeneration based on the Pichia pastoris methanol oxidation pathway. Studying the kinetic properties of alcohol oxidase (AOX), formaldehyde dehydrogenase (FLD) and formate dehydrogenase (FDH) and using the derived kinetic data for subsequent kinetic simulations of NADH formation rates led to the identification of FLD activity to constitute the main bottleneck for efficient NADH recycling via the methanol dissimilation pathway. The simulation results were confirmed constructing a recombinant P. pastoris strain overexpressing P. pastoris FLD and the highly active NADH-dependent butanediol dehydrogenase from S. cerevisiae. Employing the engineered strain, significantly improved butanediol production rates were achieved in whole-cell biotransformations.

  11. Improved radiotherapy for locally advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Carcinoma (NSCLC) patients

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ottosson, Wiviann

    be reduced by the DIBH method for the lung cancer patients. The overall aim of the clinical part of this thesis was to clarify the potential benefit of offering DIBH gating, compared to free-breathing (FB), for lung cancer patients. Particularly, the benefits for locally advanced non-small cell lung cancer......Lung cancer is worldwide one of the most common cancer diseases with a high mortality rate. There is thus an urgent need for improving radiotherapy for these patients. Radiotherapy for lung cancer patients is challenging because the tumor and organs at risk (OARs) move with the breathing motion....... Deep-Inspiration-Breath-Hold (DIBH) is a technique that potentially can improve the treatment for these patients. DIBH is frequently and routinely used for breast cancer treatments. However, it is still an experimental method for lung cancer patients e.g. due to preconceptions about their incapability...

  12. Cleaning the air and improving health with hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, M Z; Colella, W G; Golden, D M

    2005-06-24

    Converting all U.S. onroad vehicles to hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles (HFCVs) may improve air quality, health, and climate significantly, whether the hydrogen is produced by steam reforming of natural gas, wind electrolysis, or coal gasification. Most benefits would result from eliminating current vehicle exhaust. Wind and natural gas HFCVs offer the greatest potential health benefits and could save 3700 to 6400 U.S. lives annually. Wind HFCVs should benefit climate most. An all-HFCV fleet would hardly affect tropospheric water vapor concentrations. Conversion to coal HFCVs may improve health but would damage climate more than fossil/electric hybrids. The real cost of hydrogen from wind electrolysis may be below that of U.S. gasoline.

  13. Improvements in low-cost label-free QPI microscope for live cell imaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seniya, C.; Towers, C. E.; Towers, D. P.

    2017-07-01

    This paper reports an improvement in the development of a low-cost QPI microscope offering new capabilities in term of phase measurement accuracy for label-free live samples in the longer term (i.e., hours to days). The spatially separated scattered and non-scattered image light fields are reshaped in the Fourier plane and modulated to form an interference image at a CCD camera. The apertures that enable these two beams to be generated have been optimised by means of laser-cut apertures placed on the mirrors of a Michelson interferometer and has improved the phase measuring and reconstruction capability of the QPI microscope. The microscope was tested with transparent onion cells as an object of interest.

  14. Improving immunological tumor microenvironment using electro-hyperthermia followed by dendritic cell immunotherapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tsang, Yuk-Wah; Huang, Cheng-Chung; Yang, Kai-Lin; Chi, Mau-Shin; Chiang, Hsin-Chien; Wang, Yu-Shan; Andocs, Gabor; Szasz, Andras; Li, Wen-Tyng; Chi, Kwan-Hwa

    2015-01-01

    The treatment of intratumoral dentritic cells (DCs) commonly fails because it cannot evoke immunity in a poor tumor microenvironment (TME). Modulated electro-hyperthermia (mEHT, trade-name: oncothermia) represents a significant technological advancement in the hyperthermia field, allowing the autofocusing of electromagnetic power on a cell membrane to generate massive apoptosis. This approach turns local immunogenic cancer cell death (apoptosis) into a systemic anti-tumor immune response and may be implemented by treatment with intratumoral DCs. The CT26 murine colorectal cancer model was used in this investigation. The inhibition of growth of the tumor and the systemic anti-tumor immune response were measured. The tumor was heated to a core temperature of 42 °C for 30 min. The matured synergetic DCs were intratumorally injected 24 h following mEHT was applied. mEHT induced significant apoptosis and enhanced the release of heat shock protein70 (Hsp70) in CT26 tumors. Treatment with mEHT-DCs significantly inhibited CT26 tumor growth, relative to DCs alone or mEHT alone. The secondary tumor protection effect upon rechallenging was observed in mice that were treated with mEHT-DCs. Immunohistochemical staining of CD45 and F4/80 revealed that mEHT-DC treatment increased the number of leukocytes and macrophages. Most interestingly, mEHT also induced infiltrations of eosinophil, which has recently been reported to be an orchestrator of a specific T cell response. Cytotoxic T cell assay and ELISpot assay revealed a tumor-specific T cell activity. This study demonstrated that mEHT induces tumor cell apoptosis and enhances the release of Hsp70 from heated tumor cells, unlike conventional hyperthermia. mEHT can create a favorable tumor microenvironment for an immunological chain reaction that improves the success rate of intratumoral DC immunotherapy. The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12885-015-1690-2) contains supplementary material, which is available to

  15. Improved low temperature performance of lithium ion cells with quaternary carbonate-based electrolytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smart, M. C.; Ratnakumar, B. V.; Whitcanack, L. D.; Chin, K. B.; Surampudi, S.; Croft, H.; Tice, D.; Staniewicz, R.

    2002-01-01

    In order to enable future missions involving the exploration of the surface of Mars with Landers and Rovers, NASA desires long life, high energy density rechargeable batteries which can operate well at very low temperature (down to 40(deg)C). Lithium-ion technology has been identified as being the most promising chemistry, due to high gravimetric and volumetric energy densities, as well as, long life characteristics. However, the state-of-art (SOA) technology is not sufficient to meet the needs of many applications that require excellent low temperature capabilities. To further improve this technology, work at JF'L has been focused upon developing electrolytes that result in lithium-ion cells with wider temperature ranges of operation. These efforts have led to the identification of a number of ternary and quaternary, all carbonate-based electrolytes that have been demonstrated to result in improved low temperature performance in experimental three-electrode MCMB carbon/LiNio.sCoo.zOz cells. A number of electrochemical characterization techniques were performed on these cells (i.e., Tafel polarization measurements, linear polarization measurements, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS)) to further enhance our understanding of the performance limitations at low temperature. The most promising electrolyte formulations, namely 1 .O M LiPF6EC+DEC+DMC+EMC (1 : 1: 1 :2 v/v) and 1 .O M LiPF6 EC+DEC+DMC+EMC (1 : 1 : 1 :3 v/v), were incorporated into SAFT prototype DD-size (9 Ahr) lithium- cells for evaluation. A number of electrical tests were performed on these cells, including rate characterization as a function of temperature, cycle life characterization at different temperatures, as well as, many mission specific characterization test to determine their viability to enable future missions to Mars. Excellent performance was observed with the prototype DD-size cells over a wide temperature range (-50 to 4OoC), with high specific energy being delivered at very

  16. A NIR-remote controlled upconverting nanoparticle: an improved tool for living cell dye-labeling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zheng, Bin; Gong, Xiaoqun; Wang, Hanjie; Wang, Sheng; Chang, Jin; Wang, Huiquan; Li, Wei; Tan, Jian

    2015-01-01

    In living cells, due to the selective permeability and complicated cellular environment, the uptake efficiency and fluorescence decay of organic dyes during dye-labeling may be influenced, which may eventually result in poor fluorescent imaging. In this work, a protocol of UCNs@mSiO 2 -(FA and Azo) core–shell nanocarriers was designed and prepared successfully. The core–shell nanocarriers were assembled from two parts, including a mesoporous silica shell surface modified by folate (FA) and azobenzene (Azo), and an upconverting nanocrystal (UCN) core. The mesoporous silica shell is used for loading organic dyes and conjugating folate which helps to enhance the cellular uptake of nanocarriers. The UCN core works as a transducer to convert near infrared (NIR) light to local UV and visible light to activate a back-and-forth wagging motion of azobenzene molecules on the surface, while the azobenzene acts as a molecular impeller for propelling the release of organic dyes. The nanocarriers of loading organic dyes can maintain the stability of the fluorescent imaging effect better than free organic dyes. The experimental results show that with the help of the nanoparticle, cell uptake efficiency of the model dyes of rhodamine and 4′, 6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI) was significantly improved. The release of dyes can only be triggered by NIR light exposure and their quantity is highly dependent on the duration of NIR light exposure, thus realizing NIR-regulated dye release spatiotemporally. Our work may open a novel avenue for precisely controlling UCN-based living cell imaging in biotechnology and diagnostics, as well as studying cell dynamics, cell–cell interactions, and tissue morphogenesis. (paper)

  17. Allogeneic Stem Cells Alter Gene Expression and Improve Healing of Distal Limb Wounds in Horses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Textor, Jamie A.; Clark, Kaitlin C.; Walker, Naomi J.; Aristizobal, Fabio A.; Kol, Amir; LeJeune, Sarah S.; Bledsoe, Andrea; Davidyan, Arik; Gray, Sarah N.; Bohannon‐Worsley, Laurie K.; Woolard, Kevin D.

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Distal extremity wounds are a significant clinical problem in horses and humans and may benefit from mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) therapy. This study evaluated the effects of direct wound treatment with allogeneic stem cells, in terms of gross, histologic, and transcriptional features of healing. Three full‐thickness cutaneous wounds were created on each distal forelimb in six healthy horses, for a total of six wounds per horse. Umbilical cord‐blood derived equine MSCs were applied to each wound 1 day after wound creation, in one of four forms: (a) normoxic‐ or (b) hypoxic‐preconditioned cells injected into wound margins, or (c) normoxic‐ or (d) hypoxic‐preconditioned cells embedded in an autologous fibrin gel and applied topically to the wound bed. Controls were one blank (saline) injected wound and one blank fibrin gel‐treated wound per horse. Data were collected weekly for 6 weeks and included wound surface area, thermography, gene expression, and histologic scoring. Results indicated that MSC treatment by either delivery method was safe and improved histologic outcomes and wound area. Hypoxic‐preconditioning did not offer an advantage. MSC treatment by injection resulted in statistically significant increases in transforming growth factor beta and cyclooxygenase‐2 expression at week 1. Histologically, significantly more MSC‐treated wounds were categorized as pro‐healing than pro‐inflammatory. Wound area was significantly affected by treatment: MSC‐injected wounds were consistently smaller than gel‐treated or control wounds. In conclusion, MSC therapy shows promise for distal extremity wounds in horses, particularly when applied by direct injection into the wound margin. stem cells translational medicine 2018;7:98–108 PMID:29063737

  18. Cell-permeable peptides improve cellular uptake and therapeutic gene delivery of replication-deficient viruses in cells and in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gratton, Jean-Philippe; Yu, Jun; Griffith, Jason W; Babbitt, Roger W; Scotland, Ramona S; Hickey, Reed; Giordano, Frank J; Sessa, William C

    2003-03-01

    Small polybasic peptides derived from the transduction domains of certain proteins, such as the third alpha-helix of the Antennapedia (Antp) homeodomain, can cross the cell membrane through a receptor-independent mechanism. These cell-permeable molecules have been used as 'Trojan horses' to introduce biologically active cargo molecules such as DNA, peptides or proteins into cells. Using these cell-permeable peptides, we have developed an efficient and simple method to increase virally mediated gene delivery and protein expression in vitro and in vivo. Here, we show that cell-permeable peptides increase viral cell entry, improve gene expression at reduced titers of virus and improve efficacy of therapeutically relevant genes in vivo.

  19. Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells combined with minocycline improve spinal cord injury in a rat model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Dayong; Zeng, Wei; Fu, Yunfeng; Gao, Meng; Lv, Guohua

    2015-01-01

    The aims of this study were to assess that the effects of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) combination with minocycline improve spinal cord injury (SCI) in rat model. In the present study, the Wistar rats were randomly divided into five groups: control group, SCI group, BMSCs group, Minocycline group and BMSCs + minocycline group. Basso, Beattie and Bresnahan (BBB) test and MPO activity were used to assess the effect of combination therapy on locomotion and neutrophil infiltration. Inflammation factors, VEGF and BDNF expression, caspase-3 activation, phosphorylation-p38MAPK, proNGF, p75NTR and RhoA expressions were estimated using commercial kits or western blot, respectively. BBB scores were significantly increased and MPO activity was significantly undermined by combination therapy. In addition, combination therapy significantly decreased inflammation factors in SCI rats. Results from western blot showed that combination therapy significantly up-regulated the protein of VEGF and BDNF expression and down-regulated the protein of phosphorylation-p38MAPK, proNGF, p75NTR and RhoA expressions in SCI rats. Combination therapy stimulation also suppressed the caspase-3 activation in SCI rats. These results demonstrated that the effects of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells combination with minocycline improve SCI in rat model.

  20. Equipment Layout Improvement for Large-Scale Hot Cell Facility Logistics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seungnam Yu

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available This study presents approaches to equipment layout improvement for a large-scale hot cell facility. First, the original facility layout and target process are introduced, including the basic information and specifications. Second, the flow of process materials is analyzed and the relationships are evaluated in detail using a “from-to chart” and a “relationship chart” for the original layout, and the logistics are simulated using the selected discrete event simulator to calculate the traveling distances of process materials handled by teleoperated material handling systems. Third, the original layout is modified using the total closeness rating (TCR, and the efficiency and usage of the material handling system are calculated and compared with the original case to evaluate the efficiency improvement of the modified layout. This modification process, which included load reduction, enabled those aspects of the material handling system that would need to be changed to be identified; these changes were suggested by a quantitative analysis of the logistics between each pair of stations and intuitive rearrangement based on charts and figures. These approaches could be an initial step in the large-scale hot cell design process, with future work to follow.

  1. Patients' views on improving sickle cell disease management in primary care: focus group discussion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aljuburi, Ghida; Phekoo, Karen J; Okoye, Nv Ogo; Anie, Kofie; Green, Stuart A; Nkohkwo, Asaah; Ojeer, Patrick; Ndive, Comfort; Banarsee, Ricky; Oni, Lola; Majeed, Azeem

    2012-12-01

    To assess sickle cell disease (SCD) patient and carer perspectives on the primary care services related to SCD that they receive from their general practitioner (GP). A focus group discussion was used to elicit the views of patients about the quality of care they receive from their primary health-care providers and what they thought was the role of primary care in SCD management. The focus group discussion was video recorded. The recording was then examined by the project team and recurring themes were identified. A comparison was made with notes made by two scribes also present at the discussion. Sickle Cell Society in Brent, UK. Ten participants with SCD or caring for someone with SCD from Northwest London, UK. Patients' perceptions about the primary care services they received, and a list of key themes and suggestions. Patients and carers often bypassed GPs for acute problems but felt that GPs had an important role to play around repeat prescriptions and general health care. These service users believed SCD is often ignored and deemed unimportant by GPs. Participants wanted the health service to support primary health-care providers to improve their knowledge and understanding of SCD. Key themes and suggestions from this focus group have been used to help develop an educational intervention for general practice services that will be used to improve SCD management in primary care.

  2. Improving startup performance with carbon mesh anodes in separator electrode assembly microbial fuel cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Fang; Xia, Xue; Luo, Yong; Sun, Dan; Call, Douglas F; Logan, Bruce E

    2013-04-01

    In a separator electrode assembly microbial fuel cell, oxygen crossover from the cathode inhibits current generation by exoelectrogenic bacteria, resulting in poor reactor startup and performance. To determine the best approach for improving startup performance, the effect of acclimation to a low set potential (-0.2V, versus standard hydrogen electrode) was compared to startup at a higher potential (+0.2 V) or no set potential, and inoculation with wastewater or pre-acclimated cultures. Anodes acclimated to -0.2 V produced the highest power of 1330±60 mW m(-2) for these different anode conditions, but unacclimated wastewater inocula produced inconsistent results despite the use of this set potential. By inoculating reactors with transferred cell suspensions, however, startup time was reduced and high power was consistently produced. These results show that pre-acclimation at -0.2 V consistently improves power production compared to use of a more positive potential or the lack of a set potential. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. An improved algorithm for fast resonant Mie scatter correction of infrared spectra of cells and tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konevskikh, Tatiana; Lukacs, Rozalia; Kohler, Achim

    2018-01-01

    Mie scattering effects create serious problems for the interpretation of Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy spectra of single cells and tissues. During recent years, different techniques were proposed to retrieve pure absorbance spectra from spectra with Mie distortions. Recently, we published an iterative algorithm for correcting Mie scattering in spectra of single cells and tissues, which we called "the fast resonant Mie scatter correction algorithm." The algorithm is based on extended multiplicative signal correction (EMSC) and employs a meta-model for a parameter range of refractive index and size parameters. In the present study, we suggest several improvements of the algorithm. We demonstrate that the improved algorithm reestablishes chemical features of the measured spectra, and show that it tends away from the reference spectrum employed in the EMSC. We suggest strategies for choosing parameter ranges and other model parameters such as the number of principal components of the meta-model and the number of iterations. We demonstrate that the suggested algorithm optimizes an error function of the refractive index in a forward Mie model. We suggest a stop criterion for the iterative algorithm based on the error function of the forward model. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  4. Improving startup performance with carbon mesh anodes in separator electrode assembly microbial fuel cells

    KAUST Repository

    Zhang, Fang

    2013-04-01

    In a separator electrode assembly microbial fuel cell, oxygen crossover from the cathode inhibits current generation by exoelectrogenic bacteria, resulting in poor reactor startup and performance. To determine the best approach for improving startup performance, the effect of acclimation to a low set potential (-0.2V, versus standard hydrogen electrode) was compared to startup at a higher potential (+0.2V) or no set potential, and inoculation with wastewater or pre-acclimated cultures. Anodes acclimated to -0.2V produced the highest power of 1330±60mWm-2 for these different anode conditions, but unacclimated wastewater inocula produced inconsistent results despite the use of this set potential. By inoculating reactors with transferred cell suspensions, however, startup time was reduced and high power was consistently produced. These results show that pre-acclimation at -0.2V consistently improves power production compared to use of a more positive potential or the lack of a set potential. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

  5. Microbial desalination cells for improved performance in wastewater treatment, electricity production, and desalination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Haiping; Xu, Pei; Roane, Timberley M; Jenkins, Peter E; Ren, Zhiyong

    2012-02-01

    The low conductivity and alkalinity in municipal wastewater significantly limit power production from microbial fuel cells (MFCs). This study integrated desalination with wastewater treatment and electricity production in a microbial desalination cell (MDC) by utilizing the mutual benefits among the above functions. When using wastewater as the sole substrate, the power output from the MDC (8.01 W/m(3)) was four times higher than a control MFC without desalination function. In addition, the MDC removed 66% of the salts and improved COD removal by 52% and Coulombic efficiency by 131%. Desalination in MDCs improved wastewater characteristics by increasing the conductivity by 2.5 times and stabilizing anolyte pH, which therefore reduced system resistance and maintained microbial activity. Microbial community analysis revealed a more diverse anode microbial structure in the MDC than in the MFC. The results demonstrated that MDC can serve as a viable option for integrated wastewater treatment, energy production, and desalination. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Improving bioelectricity generation and COD removal of sewage sludge in microbial desalination cell.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebrahimi, Atieh; Yousefi Kebria, Daryoush; Darzi, Ghasem Najafpour

    2018-05-01

    Improving wastewater treatment process and water desalination are two important solutions for increasing the available supply of fresh water. Microbial desalination cells (MDCs) with common electrolytes display relatively low organic matter removal and high cost. In this study, sewage sludge was used as the substrate in the Microbial desalination cell (MDC) under three different initial salt concentrations (5, 20 and 35 g.L -1 ) and the maximum salt removal rates of 50.6%, 64% and 69.6% were obtained under batch condition, respectively. The MDC also produced the maximum power density of 47.1 W m -3 and the averaged chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal of 58.2 ± 0.89% when the initial COD was 6610 ± 83 mg L -1 . Employing treated sludge as catholyte enhanced COD removal and power density to 87.3% and 54.4 W m -3 , respectively, with counterbalancing pH variation in treated effluent. These promising results showed, for the first time, that the excess sewage sludge obtained from biological wastewater treatment plants could be successfully used as anolyte and catholyte in MDC, achieving organic matter biodegradation along with salt removal and energy production. In addition, using treated sludge as catholyte will improve the performance of MDC and introduce a more effective method for both sludge treatment and desalination.

  7. Modeling coverage gaps in haplotype frequencies via Bayesian inference to improve stem cell donor selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Louzoun, Yoram; Alter, Idan; Gragert, Loren; Albrecht, Mark; Maiers, Martin

    2018-05-01

    Regardless of sampling depth, accurate genotype imputation is limited in regions of high polymorphism which often have a heavy-tailed haplotype frequency distribution. Many rare haplotypes are thus unobserved. Statistical methods to improve imputation by extending reference haplotype distributions using linkage disequilibrium patterns that relate allele and haplotype frequencies have not yet been explored. In the field of unrelated stem cell transplantation, imputation of highly polymorphic human leukocyte antigen (HLA) genes has an important application in identifying the best-matched stem cell donor when searching large registries totaling over 28,000,000 donors worldwide. Despite these large registry sizes, a significant proportion of searched patients present novel HLA haplotypes. Supporting this observation, HLA population genetic models have indicated that many extant HLA haplotypes remain unobserved. The absent haplotypes are a significant cause of error in haplotype matching. We have applied a Bayesian inference methodology for extending haplotype frequency distributions, using a model where new haplotypes are created by recombination of observed alleles. Applications of this joint probability model offer significant improvement in frequency distribution estimates over the best existing alternative methods, as we illustrate using five-locus HLA frequency data from the National Marrow Donor Program registry. Transplant matching algorithms and disease association studies involving phasing and imputation of rare variants may benefit from this statistical inference framework.

  8. Efficiency improvement in dye sensitized solar cells by the plasmonic effect of green synthesized silver nanoparticles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Saravanan

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available In the present investigation, the power conversion efficiency of dye-sensitized solar cells has been remarkably increased by incorporation of green synthesized silver nanoparticles into TiO2 photoanodes. Uniform silver nanoparticles were developed by treating silver ions with Peltophorum pterocarpum flower extract at room temperature. The obtained silver nanoparticles have been characterized by UV-vis. spectroscopy, X-ray Diffraction analysis and Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM. The X-ray diffraction analysis showed that the obtained silver nanoparticles were polycrystalline in nature with face centered cubic lattice. Silver nanoparticles, with an approximate size in the range of 20–50 nm were examined by the TEM. The plasmonic nanocomposite material was prepared by mixing different green synthesized silver nanoparticles (Ag content of 1, 2 and 3 wt% with P25TiO2 nanoparticles and used as photoanodes in dye-sensitized solar cells. Due to the plasmonic effect of the modified electrode, the power conversion efficiency of the solar cell was improved from 2.83% to 3.62% with increment around 28% after incorporation of the 2 wt% of the silver nanoparticles. Maximum increases in open-circuit voltage (up to 12.1% and in short-circuit current density (up to 10.7% were observed.

  9. Improved cytoplasmic pH measurements in SNARF-1 stained plant cells by image processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kutsuna, Natsumaro; Hasezawa, Seiichiro

    2010-01-01

    Cytoplasmic pH has long been considered to act as a secondary messenger of various cellular responses by affecting the ionization state of proteins.1 In plant biology, cytoplasmic pH has traditionally been measured, especially in guard cells and as a response to plant microorganism interactions, with pH-sensitive microelectrodes.2 More recently, the development of fluorescent pH markers, such as BCECF and SNARF-1, has allowed us to monitor cytoplasmic pH without the need for electrophysiological equipment. However, because of vacuolar structures that occupy a large volume of plant cells, simple measurements of fluorescent intensities are insufficient to provide precise cytoplasmic pH values. In this addendum, we describe our improved method to monitor cytoplasmic pH in plant cells stained by SNARF-1 by image processing using a noise-reducing filter after determination of an optimal ROI size. In addition, further developments for automated region extraction are proposed. PMID:20404517

  10. Bone marrow mesenchymal cells improve muscle function in a skeletal muscle re-injury model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno M Andrade

    Full Text Available Skeletal muscle injury is the most common problem in orthopedic and sports medicine, and severe injury leads to fibrosis and muscle dysfunction. Conventional treatment for successive muscle injury is currently controversial, although new therapies, like cell therapy, seem to be promise. We developed a model of successive injuries in rat to evaluate the therapeutic potential of bone marrow mesenchymal cells (BMMC injected directly into the injured muscle. Functional and histological assays were performed 14 and 28 days after the injury protocol by isometric tension recording and picrosirius/Hematoxilin & Eosin staining, respectively. We also evaluated the presence and the fate of BMMC on treated muscles; and muscle fiber regeneration. BMMC treatment increased maximal skeletal muscle contraction 14 and 28 days after muscle injury compared to non-treated group (4.5 ± 1.7 vs 2.5 ± 0.98 N/cm2, p<0.05 and 8.4 ± 2.3 vs. 5.7 ± 1.3 N/cm2, p<0.05 respectively. Furthermore, BMMC treatment increased muscle fiber cross-sectional area and the presence of mature muscle fiber 28 days after muscle injury. However, there was no difference in collagen deposition between groups. Immunoassays for cytoskeleton markers of skeletal and smooth muscle cells revealed an apparent integration of the BMMC within the muscle. These data suggest that BMMC transplantation accelerates and improves muscle function recovery in our extensive muscle re-injury model.

  11. Improvement of bioelectrochemical property and energy recovery by acylhomoserine lactones (AHLs) in microbial electrolysis cells (MECs)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Wenzong; Cai, Weiwei; Ma, Anzhou; Ren, Ge; Li, Zhiling; Zhuang, Guoqiang; Wang, Aijie

    2015-06-01

    Quorum sensing (QS) has been extensively studied as a cell-cell communication system, where small chemical signal molecules (acylhomoserine lactones, AHLs) can regulate the bacterial communications in bioelectrochemical systems via chemical signaling and electric signaling. In this study, electrochemical activity of bio-anode is substantially promoted by adding two kinds of AHLs with different chain length at the stage of community formation in microbial electrolysis cells (MECs). Hydrogen yield increase is observed by adding of two chain length AHLs, 3-oxo-hexanoyl-homoserine lactone (3OC6-HSL) and 3-oxo-dodecanoyl homoserine lactone (3OC12-HSL). A higher MEC current is acquired with addition of 3OC6-HSL than 3OC12-HSL at a fixed voltage of 0.8 V (vs. SHE). The highest yield is up to 3.8 ± 0.2 mol H2 mol-1 acetate at 10 μM 3OC6-HSL, which is increased 29% over control MECs. Evaluated on applied voltage, energy efficiency is increased to 171.6 ± 21.3% with short chain AHL, however, no significant improvement is performed on energy efficiency and coulombic efficiency with long-chain AHL. The study shows that bioelectrochemical characteristics of MECs varied on the chain length of AHL signal molecules and short-chain AHLs have a more positive effect on electron transfer and energy recovery in MECs.

  12. Improved air stability of perovskite solar cells via solution-processed metal oxide transport layers

    Science.gov (United States)

    You, Jingbi; Meng, Lei; Song, Tze-Bin; Guo, Tzung-Fang; Yang, Yang (Michael); Chang, Wei-Hsuan; Hong, Ziruo; Chen, Huajun; Zhou, Huanping; Chen, Qi; Liu, Yongsheng; De Marco, Nicholas; Yang, Yang

    2016-01-01

    Lead halide perovskite solar cells have recently attracted tremendous attention because of their excellent photovoltaic efficiencies. However, the poor stability of both the perovskite material and the charge transport layers has so far prevented the fabrication of devices that can withstand sustained operation under normal conditions. Here, we report a solution-processed lead halide perovskite solar cell that has p-type NiOx and n-type ZnO nanoparticles as hole and electron transport layers, respectively, and shows improved stability against water and oxygen degradation when compared with devices with organic charge transport layers. Our cells have a p-i-n structure (glass/indium tin oxide/NiOx/perovskite/ZnO/Al), in which the ZnO layer isolates the perovskite and Al layers, thus preventing degradation. After 60 days storage in air at room temperature, our all-metal-oxide devices retain about 90% of their original efficiency, unlike control devices made with organic transport layers, which undergo a complete degradation after just 5 days. The initial power conversion efficiency of our devices is 14.6 ± 1.5%, with an uncertified maximum value of 16.1%.

  13. Improved single-cell gel electrophoresis assay for detecting DNA damage in Eisenia foetida.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Marzio, Walter D; Saenz, María E; Lemière, Sebastien; Vasseur, Paule

    2005-12-01

    The earthworm (Eisenia foetida) is an attractive sentinel species for detecting genotoxicity in soil. In this study, an improved single-cell gel electrophoresis (SCGE) assay was developed for detecting DNA damage in the coelomocytes (lymphocytes) of earthworms. Coelomocytes were obtained from the coelomic fluid using a modified extrusion medium that did not include the mucolytic agent guaiacol. The extruded coelomocytes contained at least three types of cells: eleocytes (75% of the total), amoebocytes, and granulocytes. The DNA migration parameters were determined for untreated cells of each type in order that the assay could be performed with minimum inter- and intra-individual variation. In addition, lysis time was reduced to 10 min, and only one neutralization step was used. DNA damage was detected in isolated eleocytes treated with hydrogen peroxide and cadmium, and in eleocytes from earthworms exposed for up to 21 days to soil containing polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. The SCGE assay using earthworm eleocytes appears to be a sensitive biomarker for evaluating exposure to genotoxic compounds.

  14. Fine and Predictable Tuning of TALEN Gene Editing Targeting for Improved T Cell Adoptive Immunotherapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne-Sophie Gautron

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Using a TALEN-mediated gene-editing approach, we have previously described a process for the large-scale manufacturing of “off-the-shelf” CAR T cells from third-party donor T cells by disrupting the gene encoding TCRα constant chain (TRAC. Taking advantage of a previously described strategy to control TALEN targeting based on the exclusion capacities of non-conventional RVDs, we have developed highly efficient and specific nucleases targeting a key T cell immune checkpoint, PD-1, to improve engineered CAR T cells’ functionalities. Here, we demonstrate that this approach allows combined TRAC and PDCD1 TALEN processing at the desired locus while eliminating low-frequency off-site processing. Thus, by replacing few RVDs, we provide here an easy and rapid redesign of optimal TALEN combinations. We anticipate that this method can greatly benefit multiplex editing, which is of key importance especially for therapeutic applications where high editing efficiencies need to be associated with maximal specificity and safety.

  15. Intracerebral neural stem cell transplantation improved the auditory of mice with presbycusis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Hongmiao; Chen, Jichuan; Wang, Yinan; Zhang, Shichang; Zhang, Bo

    2013-01-01

    Stem cell-based regenerative therapy is a potential cellular therapeutic strategy for patients with incurable brain diseases. Embryonic neural stem cells (NSCs) represent an attractive cell source in regenerative medicine strategies in the treatment of diseased brains. Here, we assess the capability of intracerebral embryonic NSCs transplantation for C57BL/6J mice with presbycusis in vivo. Morphology analyses revealed that the neuronal rate of apoptosis was lower in the aged group (10 months of age) but not in the young group (2 months of age) after NSCs transplantation, while the electrophysiological data suggest that the Auditory Brain Stem Response (ABR) threshold was significantly decreased in the aged group at 2 weeks and 3 weeks after transplantation. By contrast, there was no difference in the aged group at 4 weeks post-transplantation or in the young group at any time post-transplantation. Furthermore, immunofluorescence experiments showed that NSCs differentiated into neurons that engrafted and migrated to the brain, even to sites of lesions. Together, our results demonstrate that NSCs transplantation improve the auditory of C57BL/6J mice with presbycusis.

  16. Improved collision probability method for thermal-neutron-flux calculation in a cylindrical reactor cell

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bosevski, T.

    1986-01-01

    An improved collision probability method for thermal-neutron-flux calculation in a cylindrical reactor cell has been developed. Expanding the neutron flux and source into a series of even powers of the radius, one' gets a convenient method for integration of the one-energy group integral transport equation. It is shown that it is possible to perform an analytical integration in the x-y plane in one variable and to use the effective Gaussian integration over another one. Choosing a convenient distribution of space points in fuel and moderator the transport matrix calculation and cell reaction rate integration were condensed. On the basis of the proposed method, the computer program DISKRET for the ZUSE-Z 23 K computer has been written. The suitability of the proposed method for the calculation of the thermal-neutron-flux distribution in a reactor cell can be seen from the test results obtained. Compared with the other collision probability methods, the proposed treatment excels with a mathematical simplicity and a faster convergence. (author)

  17. Exenatide Treatment Alone Improves β-Cell Function in a Canine Model of Pre-Diabetes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Viorica Ionut

    Full Text Available Exenatide's effects on glucose metabolism have been studied extensively in diabetes but not in pre-diabetes.We examined the chronic effects of exenatide alone on glucose metabolism in pre-diabetic canines.After 10 weeks of high-fat diet (HFD, adult dogs received one injection of streptozotocin (STZ, 18.5 mg/kg. After induction of pre-diabetes, while maintained on HFD, animals were randomized to receive either exenatide (n = 7 or placebo (n = 7 for 12 weeks. β-Cell function was calculated from the intravenous glucose tolerance test (IVGTT, expressed as the acute insulin response, AIRG, the oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT, insulinogenic index and the graded-hyperglycemic clamp (clamp insulinogenic index. Whole-body insulin sensitivity was assessed by the IVGTT. At the end of the study, pancreatic islets were isolated to assess β-cell function in vitro.OGTT: STZ caused an increase in glycemia at 120 min by 22.0% (interquartile range, IQR, 31.5% (P = 0.011. IVGTT: This protocol also showed a reduction in glucose tolerance by 48.8% (IQR, 36.9% (P = 0.002. AIRG decreased by 54.0% (IQR, 40.7% (P = 0.010, leading to mild fasting hyperglycemia (P = 0.039. Exenatide, compared with placebo, decreased body weight (P<0.001 without altering food intake, fasting glycemia, insulinemia, glycated hemoglobin A1c, or glucose tolerance. Exenatide, compared with placebo, increased both OGTT- (P = 0.040 and clamp-based insulinogenic indexes (P = 0.016, improved insulin secretion in vitro (P = 0.041, but had no noticeable effect on insulin sensitivity (P = 0.405.In pre-diabetic canines, 12-week exenatide treatment improved β-cell function but not glucose tolerance or insulin sensitivity. These findings demonstrate partial beneficial metabolic effects of exenatide alone on an animal model of pre-diabetes.

  18. BIX-01294 increases pig cloning efficiency by improving epigenetic reprogramming of somatic cell nuclei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Jiaojiao; Zhang, Hongyong; Yao, Jing; Qin, Guosong; Wang, Feng; Wang, Xianlong; Luo, Ailing; Zheng, Qiantao; Cao, Chunwei; Zhao, Jianguo

    2016-01-01

    Accumulating evidence suggests that faulty epigenetic reprogramming leads to the abnormal development of cloned embryos and results in the low success rates observed in all mammals produced through somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT). The aberrant methylation status of H3K9me and H3K9me2 has been reported in cloned mouse embryos. To explore the role of H3K9me2 and H3K9me in the porcine somatic cell nuclear reprogramming, BIX-01294, known as a specific inhibitor of G9A (histone-lysine methyltransferase of H3K9), was used to treat the nuclear-transferred (NT) oocytes for 14-16 h after activation. The results showed that the developmental competence of porcine SCNT embryos was significantly enhanced both in vitro (blastocyst rate 16.4% vs 23.2%, Pcloning rate 1.59% vs 2.96%) after 50 nm BIX-01294 treatment. BIX-01294 treatment significantly decreased the levels of H3K9me2 and H3K9me at the 2- and 4-cell stages, which are associated with embryo genetic activation, and increased the transcriptional expression of the pluripotency genes SOX2, NANOG and OCT4 in cloned blastocysts. Furthermore, the histone acetylation levels of H3K9, H4K8 and H4K12 in cloned embryos were decreased after BIX-01294 treatment. However, co-treatment of activated NT oocytes with BIX-01294 and Scriptaid rescued donor nuclear chromatin from decreased histone acetylation of H4K8 that resulted from exposure to BIX-01294 only and consequently improved the preimplantation development of SCNT embryos (blastocyst formation rates of 23.7% vs 21.5%). These results indicated that treatment with BIX-01294 enhanced the developmental competence of porcine SCNT embryos through improvements in epigenetic reprogramming and gene expression. © 2016 Society for Reproduction and Fertility.

  19. Improvement of organic solar cells by flexible substrate and ITO surface treatments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cheng, Yuang-Tung; Ho, Jyh-Jier; Wang, Chien-Kun; Lee, William; Lu, Chih-Chiang; Yau, Bao-Shun; Nain, Jhen-Liang; Chang, Shun-Hsyung; Chang, Chiu-Cheng; Wang, Kang L.

    2010-01-01

    In this paper, surface treatments on polyethylene terephthalate with polymeric hard coating (PET-HC) substrates are described. The effect of the contact angle on the treatment is first investigated. It has been observed that detergent is quite effective in removing organic contamination on the flexible PET-HC substrates. Next, using a DC-reactive magnetron sputter, indium tin oxide (ITO) thin films of 90 nm are grown on a substrate treated by detergent. Then, various ITO surface treatments are made for improving the performance of the finally developed organic solar cells with structure Al/P3HT:PCBM/PEDOT:PSS/ITO/PET. It is found that the parameters of the ITO including resistivity, carrier concentration, transmittance, surface morphology, and work function depended on the surface treatments and significantly influence the solar cell performance. With the optimal conditions for detergent treatment on flexible PET substrates, the ITO film with a resistivity of 5.6 x 10 -4 Ω cm and average optical transmittance of 84.1% in the visible region are obtained. The optimal ITO surface treated by detergent for 5 min and then by UV ozone for 20 min exhibits the best WF value of 5.22 eV. This improves about 8.30% in the WF compared with that of the untreated ITO film. In the case of optimal treatment with the organic photovoltaic device, meanwhile, 36.6% enhancement in short circuit current density (J sc ) and 92.7% enhancement in conversion efficiency (η) over the untreated solar cell are obtained.

  20. Strategies for improving production performance of probiotic Pediococcus acidilactici viable cell by overcoming lactic acid inhibition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Othman, Majdiah; Ariff, Arbakariya B; Wasoh, Helmi; Kapri, Mohd Rizal; Halim, Murni

    2017-11-27

    Lactic acid bacteria are industrially important microorganisms recognized for fermentative ability mostly in their probiotic benefits as well as lactic acid production for various applications. Fermentation conditions such as concentration of initial glucose in the culture, concentration of lactic acid accumulated in the culture, types of pH control strategy, types of aeration mode and different agitation speed had influenced the cultivation performance of batch fermentation of Pediococcus acidilactici. The maximum viable cell concentration obtained in constant fed-batch fermentation at a feeding rate of 0.015 L/h was 6.1 times higher with 1.6 times reduction in lactic acid accumulation compared to batch fermentation. Anion exchange resin, IRA 67 was found to have the highest selectivity towards lactic acid compared to other components studied. Fed-batch fermentation of P. acidilactici coupled with lactic acid removal system using IRA 67 resin showed 55.5 and 9.1 times of improvement in maximum viable cell concentration compared to fermentation without resin for batch and fed-batch mode respectively. The improvement of the P. acidilactici growth in the constant fed-batch fermentation indicated the use of minimal and simple process control equipment is an effective approach for reducing by-product inhibition. Further improvement in the cultivation performance of P. acidilactici in fed-bath fermentation with in situ addition of anion-exchange resin significantly helped to enhance the growth of P. acidilactici by reducing the inhibitory effect of lactic acid and thus increasing probiotic production.

  1. Improvement of mouse cloning using nuclear transfer-derived embryonic stem cells and/or histone deacetylase inhibitor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wakayama, Sayaka; Wakayama, Teruhiko

    2010-01-01

    Nuclear transfer-derived ES (ntES) cell lines can be established from somatic cell nuclei with a relatively high success rate. Although ntES cells have been shown to be equivalent to ES cells, there are ethical objections concerning human cells, such as the use of fresh oocyte donation from young healthy woman. In contrast, the use of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells for cloning poses few ethical problems and is a relatively easy technique compared with nuclear transfer. Therefore, although there are several reports proposing the use of ntES cells as a model of regenerative medicine, the use of these cells in preliminary medical research is waning. However, in theory, 5 to 10 donor cells can establish one ntES cell line and, once established, these cells will propagate indefinitely. These cells can be used to generate cloned animals from ntES cell lines using a second round of NT. Even in infertile and "unclonable" strains of mice, we can generate offspring from somatic cells by combining cloning with ntES technology. Moreover, cloned offspring can be generated potentially even from the nuclei of dead bodies or freeze-dried cells via ntES cells, such as from an extinct frozen animal. Currently, only the ntES technology is available for this purpose, because all other techniques, including iPS cell derivation, require significant numbers of living donor cells. This review describes how to improve the efficiency of cloning, the establishment of clone-derived embryonic stem cells and further applications.

  2. Improved photodynamic action of nanoparticles loaded with indium (III) phthalocyanine on MCF-7 breast cancer cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Souto, Carlos Augusto Zanoni [Federal Institute of Espirito Santo (Brazil); Madeira, Klesia Pirola [Federal University of Espirito Santo, Biotechnology Program/RENORBIO, Health Sciences Center (Brazil); Rettori, Daniel [Federal University of Sao Paulo, Department of Exact Sciences and Earth (Brazil); Baratti, Mariana Ozello [University of Campinas, Department of Cellular Biology (Brazil); Rangel, Leticia Batista Azevedo [Federal University of Espirito Santo, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences (Brazil); Razzo, Daniel [University of Campinas, Department of Physical Chemistry, Institute of Chemistry (Brazil); Silva, Andre Romero da, E-mail: aromero@ifes.edu.br [Federal Institute of Espirito Santo (Brazil)

    2013-09-15

    Indium (III) phthalocyanine (InPc) was encapsulated into nanoparticles of PEGylated poly(d,l-lactide-co-glycolide) (PLGA-PEG) to improve the photobiological activity of the photosensitizer. The efficacy of nanoparticles loaded with InPc and their cellular uptake was investigated with MCF-7 breast tumor cells, and compared with the free InPc. The influence of photosensitizer (PS) concentration (1.8-7.5 {mu}mol/L), incubation time (1-2 h), and laser power (10-100 mW) were studied on the photodynamic effect caused by the encapsulated and the free InPc. Nanoparticles with a size distribution ranging from 61 to 243 nm and with InPc entrapment efficiency of 72 {+-} 6 % were used in the experiments. Only the photodynamic effect of encapsulated InPc was dependent on PS concentration and laser power. The InPc-loaded nanoparticles were more efficient in reducing MCF-7 cell viability than the free PS. For a light dose of 7.5 J/cm{sup 2} and laser power of 100 mW, the effectiveness of encapsulated InPc to reduce the viability was 34 {+-} 3 % while for free InPc was 60 {+-} 7 %. Confocal microscopy showed that InPc-loaded nanoparticles, as well as free InPc, were found throughout the cytosol. However, the nanoparticle aggregates and the aggregates of free PS were found in the cell periphery and outside of the cell. The nanoparticles aggregates were generated due to the particles concentration used in the experiment because of the small loading of the InPc while the low solubility of InPc caused the formation of aggregates of free PS in the culture medium. The participation of singlet oxygen in the photocytotoxic effect of InPc-loaded nanoparticles was corroborated by electron paramagnetic resonance experiments, and the encapsulation of photosensitizers reduced the photobleaching of InPc.

  3. Oxygen modulation of flexible PbS/Pb Schottky junction PEC cells with improved photoelectric performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Peng; Fan, Libo; Guo, Qiuquan; Shi, Hongcai; Wang, Liwen; Liu, Yujian; Li, Ming; Zhang, Chunli; Yang, Jun; Zheng, Zhi

    2016-09-02

    Flexible photoelectric devices are emerging as a new class of photovoltaic cells. In this study, lead (Pb) foil was used as a flexible substrate to grow in situ lead sulfide (PbS) film with good uniformity and adhesion by a solvothermal elemental direct reaction, resulting in a PbS/Pb Schottky junction formed naturally between the PbS film and underlying Pb foil. We found that the photocurrent response of the photoelectrochemical (PEC) cell was greatly improved through a facile oxygen (O2)-modulation-based post-processing technique. O2 could decompose the organic residue and oxidize the Pb at the interface between the PbS film and Pb foils. Different characterization techniques, including thermogravimetric analysis, differential scanning calorimetry, x-ray diffraction, energy-dispersive x-ray spectroscopy, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, the change in transient photocurrent density (J p) with time (t), dark current-voltage (I-V) and absorption spectra were applied to get a full understanding of the O2 modulation effect. The oxidization treatment of the PbS film could regulate the flow of charge carriers to reduce their recombination, leading to photoresponse enhancement for the PEC cells. In particular, the process could modulate the tunneling current and interface states to optimize dark I-V characteristics. In addition, the magnitude of the barrier height can be tuned by O2 modulation, which was explained by theoretical analysis and calculation. We also demonstrated that the in situ formed PbS film has outstanding adhesion on the flexible Pb substrate. Our film synthesis method and post O2-modulation design as well as the corresponding device assembly may provide a novel perspective to the flexible PCE-cell-related research.

  4. Measurement of the Red Blood Cell Distribution Width Improves the Risk Prediction in Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boros, András Mihály; Perge, Péter; Jenei, Zsigmond; Karády, Júlia; Zima, Endre; Molnár, Levente; Becker, Dávid; Gellér, László; Prohászka, Zoltán; Merkely, Béla; Széplaki, Gábor

    2016-01-01

    Increases in red blood cell distribution width (RDW) and NT-proBNP (N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide) predict the mortality of chronic heart failure patients undergoing cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT). It was hypothesized that RDW is independent of and possibly even superior to NT-proBNP from the aspect of long-term mortality prediction. The blood counts and serum NT-proBNP levels of 134 patients undergoing CRT were measured. Multivariable Cox regression models were applied and reclassification analyses were performed. After separate adjustment to the basic model of left bundle branch block, beta blocker therapy, and serum creatinine, both the RDW > 13.35% and NT-proBNP > 1975 pg/mL predicted the 5-year mortality (n = 57). In the final model including all variables, the RDW [HR = 2.49 (1.27-4.86); p = 0.008] remained a significant predictor, whereas the NT-proBNP [HR = 1.18 (0.93-3.51); p = 0.07] lost its predictive value. On addition of the RDW measurement, a 64% net reclassification improvement and a 3% integrated discrimination improvement were achieved over the NT-proBNP-adjusted basic model. Increased RDW levels accurately predict the long-term mortality of CRT patients independently of NT-proBNP. Reclassification analysis revealed that the RDW improves the risk stratification and could enhance the optimal patient selection for CRT.

  5. Tetanus toxoid and CCL3 improve dendritic cell vaccines in mice and glioblastoma patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Duane A; Batich, Kristen A; Gunn, Michael D; Huang, Min-Nung; Sanchez-Perez, Luis; Nair, Smita K; Congdon, Kendra L; Reap, Elizabeth A; Archer, Gary E; Desjardins, Annick; Friedman, Allan H; Friedman, Henry S; Herndon, James E; Coan, April; McLendon, Roger E; Reardon, David A; Vredenburgh, James J; Bigner, Darell D; Sampson, John H

    2015-03-19

    After stimulation, dendritic cells (DCs) mature and migrate to draining lymph nodes to induce immune responses. As such, autologous DCs generated ex vivo have been pulsed with tumour antigens and injected back into patients as immunotherapy. While DC vaccines have shown limited promise in the treatment of patients with advanced cancers including glioblastoma, the factors dictating DC vaccine efficacy remain poorly understood. Here we show that pre-conditioning the vaccine site with a potent recall antigen such as tetanus/diphtheria (Td) toxoid can significantly improve the lymph node homing and efficacy of tumour-antigen-specific DCs. To assess the effect of vaccine site pre-conditioning in humans, we randomized patients with glioblastoma to pre-conditioning with either mature DCs or Td unilaterally before bilateral vaccination with DCs pulsed with Cytomegalovirus phosphoprotein 65 (pp65) RNA. We and other laboratories have shown that pp65 is expressed in more than 90% of glioblastoma specimens but not in surrounding normal brain, providing an unparalleled opportunity to subvert this viral protein as a tumour-specific target. Patients given Td had enhanced DC migration bilaterally and significantly improved survival. In mice, Td pre-conditioning also enhanced bilateral DC migration and suppressed tumour growth in a manner dependent on the chemokine CCL3. Our clinical studies and corroborating investigations in mice suggest that pre-conditioning with a potent recall antigen may represent a viable strategy to improve anti-tumour immunotherapy.

  6. Sodium fluorocitrate having protective effect on palmitate-induced beta cell death improves hyperglycemia in diabetic db/db mice

    OpenAIRE

    Jung, Ik-Rak; Choi, Sung-E.; Hong, Seung A.; Hwang, Yoonjung; Kang, Yup

    2017-01-01

    Beta cell loss and insulin resistance play roles in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes. Elevated levels of free fatty acids in plasma might contribute to the loss of beta cells. The objective of this study was to find a chemical that could protect against palmitate-induced beta cell death and investigate whether such chemical could improve hyperglycemia in mouse model of type 2 diabetes. Sodium fluorocitrate (SFC), an aconitase inhibitor, was found to be strongly and specifically protective ...

  7. Intervention levels in a precocious detection program for breast cancer and evaluation of four participant units; Niveles de intervencion en un programa de deteccion precoz del cancer de mama y evaluacion de cuatro unidades participantes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carrera M, F.; Velazquez M, S.; Manzano M, F.J.; Sanchez S, J. [Hospital `Juan Ramon Jimenez` Ronda Norte s/n 21005. Huelva, Espana (Spain)

    1998-12-31

    It is presented the basis to make a cost benefit analysis for a breast cancer precocious detection program and consequently the keys for its optimization from the radiological point of view. Taking this as a reference it is made an exhaustive quality control to four mammographic unities which were participating or they were candidates to participate in a breast cancer precocious detection program. Also it is presented its results. It is followed the protocol for quality control in mammography in Spain obtaining values for the measurement of twelve interesting parameters. It should be maintained the standard breast dose about 1 mGy/ image. It should be available a 24 x 30 cm portacassete and considering the utilization of a single projection by breast. (Author)

  8. Wnt5a-treated midbrain neural stem cells improve dopamine cell replacement therapy in parkinsonian mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Parish, Clare L; Castelo-Branco, Gonçalo; Rawal, Nina

    2008-01-01

    Dopamine (DA) cell replacement therapy in Parkinson disease (PD) can be achieved using human fetal mesencephalic tissue; however, limited tissue availability has hindered further developments. Embryonic stem cells provide a promising alternative, but poor survival and risk of teratoma formation...... and functional integration of stem cell-derived DA neurons in vivo and define Wnt5a-treated neural stem cells as an efficient and safe source of DA neurons for cell replacement therapy in PD....

  9. Covalent Linkage of HIV-1 Trimers to Synthetic Liposomes Elicits Improved B Cell and Antibody Responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bale, Shridhar; Goebrecht, Geraldine; Stano, Armando; Wilson, Richard; Ota, Takayuki; Tran, Karen; Ingale, Jidnyasa; Zwick, Michael B; Wyatt, Richard T

    2017-08-15

    We have demonstrated that a liposomal array of well-ordered trimers enhances B cell activation, germinal center formation, and the elicitation of tier-2 autologous neutralizing antibodies. Previously, we coupled well-ordered cleavage-independent NFL trimers via their C-terminal polyhistidine tails to nickel lipids integrated into the lipid bilayer. Despite favorable in vivo effects, concern remained over the potentially longer-term in vivo instability of noncovalent linkage of the trimers to the liposomes. Accordingly, we tested both cobalt coupling and covalent linkage of the trimers to the liposomes by reengineering the polyhistidine tail to include a free cysteine on each protomer of model BG505 NFL trimers to allow covalent linkage. Both cobalt and cysteine coupling resulted in a high-density array of NFL trimers that was stable in both 20% mouse serum and 100 mM EDTA, whereas the nickel-conjugated trimers were not stable under these conditions. Binding analysis and calcium flux with anti-Env-specific B cells confirmed that the trimers maintained conformational integrity following coupling. Following immunization of mice, serologic analysis demonstrated that the covalently coupled trimers elicited Env-directed antibodies in a manner statistically significantly improved compared to soluble trimers and nickel-conjugated trimers. Importantly, the covalent coupling not only enhanced gp120-directed responses compared to soluble trimers, it also completely eliminated antibodies directed to the C-terminal His tag located at the "bottom" of the spike. In contrast, soluble and noncovalent formats efficiently elicited anti-His tag antibodies. These data indicate that covalent linkage of well-ordered trimers to liposomes in high-density array displays multiple advantages in vitro and in vivo IMPORTANCE Enveloped viruses typically encode a surface-bound glycoprotein that mediates viral entry into host cells and is a primary target for vaccine design. Liposomes with

  10. Effects of the prescription of reinforcing kidney, nourishing blood, improving eyesight on ARPE-19 cells induced by acrolein

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Man Li

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available AIM: To explore the effects of the prescription of reinforcing kidney, nourishing blood, improving eyesight on the oxidative stress model of ARPE-19 cells induced by acrolein. METHODS: SD rats serum containing the prescription of reinforcing kidney, nourishing blood, improving eyesight and the content of distilled water in serum were prepared. The effects of the prescription and distilled water in serum at different concentration(2.5%, 5%, 10%, 20% and 40%on cell vitality was observed by cell counting kit(CCK-8assay. the logarithmic phase of ARPE-19 cells were pretreated by different concentrations(1.25%, 2.5% and 5%of the prescription serum and distilled water in serum for 24h. Then it was treated with 75μmol/L acrolein for 24h. Cell vitality was observed by CCK-8 assay. The change of cell nucleus was detected by DAPI staining.RESULTS: 2.5% and 5% serum had no effect on cell viability(P>0.05, while 10%, 20%, 40% serum could inhibit cell viability(PPCONCLUSION: The prescription of reinforcing kidney, nourishing blood, improving eyesight has the protective effect on ARPE-19 cell damage induced by acrolein.

  11. O trabalho precoce e as políticas de saúde do trabalhador em Natal The precocious work and health policies for workers in Natal, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Izabel Christina do N. Feitosa

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available Este estudo objetivou investigar como é contemplada a questão do trabalho precoce pelas políticas de saúde do trabalhador em Natal. Para tal, fez-se um levantamento dos relatórios do Núcleo de Saúde do Trabalhador (NST da Secretaria Municipal de Saúde e entrevistas semi-estruturadas com os técnicos do Núcleo e do Programa de Saúde do Trabalhador (PST. Quanto ao PST, constatou-se grandes dificuldades para a concretização, principalmente em virtude do descompromisso das autoridades políticas locais. Atualmente, é um tema que parece ter sido silenciado, sobre o qual técnicos e outros profissionais, antes envolvidos, não se dispõem mais a atuar nessa área ou, até mesmo, a falar sobre o assunto. Verificou-se que, com o mesmo silêncio, tem sido tratada a questão da saúde do trabalhador precoce, que ao longo da trajetória não se encontra nenhuma medida ou intervenção para que este trabalhador passe a ocupar um lugar frente às políticas de saúde do trabalhador.This study aimed to investigate how the subject of the precocious work is contemplated in policies dedicated to workers' health in Natal. Reports of the Nucleus of Workers' Health of the Municipal Health Secretary were surveyed and semi-structured interviews performed with technicians of such Nucleus and of Program of Workers' Health. Great difficulties were verified for the materialization of the Program of the Worher's Health (PWH, mainly due to the lack of commitment of local political authorities. It is a theme that now seems to have been silenced. Professionals, previously involved, are not willing to act in the area anymore or even to speak about it. The theme of the health of precocious workers has received the same silence; policies and interventions in the area of workers' health have ignored this special kind of worker.

  12. A potential mechanism for the sexual dimorphism in the onset of puberty and incidence of idiopathic central precocious puberty in children: sex-specific kisspeptin as an integrator of puberty signals

    OpenAIRE

    Bianco, Suzy D. C.

    2012-01-01

    The major determinants of the variability in pubertal maturation are reported to be genetic and inherited. Nonetheless, nutritional status contributes significantly to this variability. Malnutrition delays puberty whereas obesity has been associated to a rise in Idiopathic Central Precocious Puberty (ICPP) in girls. However, epidemiology data indicate that contribution of obesity to early puberty varies significantly among ethnic groups, and that obesity-independent inheritable genetic factor...

  13. Improved performance of microbial fuel cells enriched with natural microbial inocula and treated by electrical current

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lin, Hongjian; Wu, Xiao; Miller, Curtis; Zhu, Jun

    2013-01-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are increasingly attracting attention as a sustainable technology as they convert chemical energy in organic wastes to electricity. In this study, the effects of different inoculum sources (river sediment, activated sludge and anaerobic sludge) and electrical current stimulation were evaluated using single-chamber air-cathode MFCs as model reactors based on performance in enrichment process and electrochemical characteristics of the reactors. The result revealed the rapid anodic biofilm development and substrate utilization of the anaerobic sludge-inoculated MFC. It was also found that the river sediment-inoculated MFC achieved the highest power output of 195 μW, or 98 mW m −2 , due to better developed anodic biofilm confirmed by scanning electron microscopy. The current stimulation enhanced the anodic biofilm attachment over time, and therefore reduced the MFC internal resistance by 27%, increased the electrical capacitance by four folds, and improved the anodic biofilm resilience against substrate deprivation. For mature MFCs, a transient application of a negative voltage (−3 V) improved the cathode activity and maximum power output by 37%. This improvement was due to the bactericidal effect of the electrode potential higher than +1.5 V vs. SHE, demonstrating a substantial benefit of treating MFC cathode after long-term operation using suitable direct electrical current. -- Highlights: •Voltage stimulation (+2 V) during inoculation reduced MFC internal resistance and improved biofilm resilience. •Voltage stimulation increased biofilm electrical capacitance by 5-fold. •Negative voltage stimulation (−3 V) enhanced the maximum power output by 37%. •River sediment MFC obtained higher power due to better anodic biofilm coverage. •Anaerobic sludge quickly developed anodic biofilm for MFC and quickly utilized volatile fatty acids

  14. Improved development of somatic cell cloned mouse embryos by vitamin C and latrunculin A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mallol, Anna; Santaló, Josep; Ibáñez, Elena

    2015-01-01

    Impaired development of embryos produced by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) is mostly associated with faulty reprogramming of the somatic nucleus to a totipotent state and can be improved by treatment with epigenetic modifiers. Here we report that addition of 100 μM vitamin C (VitC) to embryo culture medium for at least 16 h post-activation significantly increases mouse blastocyst formation and, when combined with the use of latrunculin A (LatA) during micromanipulation and activation procedures, also development to term. In spite of this, no significant effects on pluripotency (OCT4 and NANOG) or nuclear reprogramming markers (H3K14 acetylation, H3K9 methylation and DNA methylation and hydroxymethylation) could be detected. The use of LatA alone significantly improved in vitro development, but not full-term development. On the other hand, the simultaneous treatment of cloned embryos with VitC and the histone deacetylase inhibitor psammaplin A (PsA), in combination with the use of LatA, resulted in cloning efficiencies equivalent to those of VitC or PsA treatments alone, and the effects on pluripotency and nuclear reprogramming markers were less evident than when only the PsA treatment was applied. These results suggest that although both epigenetic modifiers improve cloning efficiencies, possibly through different mechanisms, they do not show an additive effect when combined. Improvement of SCNT efficiency is essential for its applications in reproductive and therapeutic cloning, and identification of molecules which increase this efficiency should facilitate studies on the mechanism of nuclear reprogramming and acquisition of totipotency.

  15. Improved development of somatic cell cloned mouse embryos by vitamin C and latrunculin A.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Mallol

    Full Text Available Impaired development of embryos produced by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT is mostly associated with faulty reprogramming of the somatic nucleus to a totipotent state and can be improved by treatment with epigenetic modifiers. Here we report that addition of 100 μM vitamin C (VitC to embryo culture medium for at least 16 h post-activation significantly increases mouse blastocyst formation and, when combined with the use of latrunculin A (LatA during micromanipulation and activation procedures, also development to term. In spite of this, no significant effects on pluripotency (OCT4 and NANOG or nuclear reprogramming markers (H3K14 acetylation, H3K9 methylation and DNA methylation and hydroxymethylation could be detected. The use of LatA alone significantly improved in vitro development, but not full-term development. On the other hand, the simultaneous treatment of cloned embryos with VitC and the histone deacetylase inhibitor psammaplin A (PsA, in combination with the use of LatA, resulted in cloning efficiencies equivalent to those of VitC or PsA treatments alone, and the effects on pluripotency and nuclear reprogramming markers were less evident than when only the PsA treatment was applied. These results suggest that although both epigenetic modifiers improve cloning efficiencies, possibly through different mechanisms, they do not show an additive effect when combined. Improvement of SCNT efficiency is essential for its applications in reproductive and therapeutic cloning, and identification of molecules which increase this efficiency should facilitate studies on the mechanism of nuclear reprogramming and acquisition of totipotency.

  16. Systems Level Engineering of Plant Cell Wall Biosynthesis to Improve Biofuel Feedstock Quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hazen, Samuel

    2013-09-27

    Our new regulatory model of cell wall biosynthesis proposes original network architecture with several newly incorporated components. The mapped set of protein-DNA interactions will serve as a foundation for 1) understanding the regulation of a complex and integral plant component and 2) the manipulation of crop species for biofuel and biotechnology purposes. This study revealed interesting and novel aspects of grass growth and development and further enforce the importance of a grass model system. By functionally characterizing a suite of genes, we have begun to improve the sparse model for transcription regulation of biomass accumulation in grasses. In the process, we have advanced methodology and brachy molecular genetic tools that will serve as valuable community resource.

  17. NAD⁺ repletion improves mitochondrial and stem cell function and enhances life span in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Hongbo; Ryu, Dongryeol; Wu, Yibo; Gariani, Karim; Wang, Xu; Luan, Peiling; D'Amico, Davide; Ropelle, Eduardo R; Lutolf, Matthias P; Aebersold, Ruedi; Schoonjans, Kristina; Menzies, Keir J; Auwerx, Johan

    2016-06-17

    Adult stem cells (SCs) are essential for tissue maintenance and regeneration yet are susceptible to senescence during aging. We demonstrate the importance of the amount of the oxidized form of cellular nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD(+)) and its effect on mitochondrial activity as a pivotal switch to modulate muscle SC (MuSC) senescence. Treatment with the NAD(+) precursor nicotinamide riboside (NR) induced the mitochondrial unfolded protein response and synthesis of prohibitin proteins, and this rejuvenated MuSCs in aged mice. NR also prevented MuSC senescence in the mdx (C57BL/10ScSn-Dmd(mdx)/J) mouse model of muscular dystrophy. We furthermore demonstrate that NR delays senescence of neural SCs and melanocyte SCs and increases mouse life span. Strategies that conserve cellular NAD(+) may reprogram dysfunctional SCs and improve life span in mammals. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  18. Achieving Highly Efficient Nonfullerene Organic Solar Cells with Improved Intermolecular Interaction and Open-Circuit Voltage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Huifeng; Ye, Long; Hou, Junxian; Jang, Bomee; Han, Guangchao; Cui, Yong; Su, Gregory M; Wang, Cheng; Gao, Bowei; Yu, Runnan; Zhang, Hao; Yi, Yuanping; Woo, Han Young; Ade, Harald; Hou, Jianhui

    2017-06-01

    A new acceptor-donor-acceptor-structured nonfullerene acceptor ITCC (3,9-bis(4-(1,1-dicyanomethylene)-3-methylene-2-oxo-cyclopenta[b]thiophen)-5,5,11,11-tetrakis(4-hexylphenyl)-dithieno[2,3-d':2,3-d']-s-indaceno[1,2-b:5,6-b']-dithiophene) is designed and synthesized via simple end-group modification. ITCC shows improved electron-transport properties and a high-lying lowest unoccupied molecular orbital level. A power conversion efficiency of 11.4% with an impressive V OC of over 1 V is recorded in photovoltaic devices, suggesting that ITCC has great potential for applications in tandem organic solar cells. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  19. Embedded vertical dual of silver nanoparticles for improved ZnO/Si heterojunction solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shokeen, Poonam; Jain, Amit; Kapoor, Avinashi

    2017-10-01

    A ZnO/Si heterojunction solar cell is studied with plasmonic nanoparticles embedded in the active layer. Two layers of silver nanoparticles are embedded in the ZnO layer. The effect of various parameters such as vertical-interparticle distance, horizontal-interparticle distance, relative dimensions of nanoparticles, and order of particle diameters are discussed in detail. Finite-difference time-domain studies suggest that particle dimensions of the top layer of silver nanoparticles should be less than the dimensions of the underneath layer of silver nanoparticles. The resulting structure acquires the benefits of each layer and improves the device performance over a broad spectrum. The dielectric separation of plasmonic layers is observed to be an important factor in favorable plasmonic response. Electric field diagrams are used to study the scattering of an incident field by proposed structure. Results are encouraging and suggest more concerted studies of multilayer plasmonic structures.

  20. Morphology and interdiffusion control to improve adhesion and cohesion properties in inverted polymer solar cells

    KAUST Repository

    Dupont, Stephanie R.

    2015-01-01

    © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. The role of pre-electrode deposition annealing on the morphology and the fracture properties of polymer solar cells is discussed. We found an increase in adhesion at the weak P3HT:PCBM/PEDOT:PSS interface with annealing temperature, caused by increased interdiffusion between the organic layers. The formation of micrometer sized PCBM crystallites, which occurs with annealing above the crystallization temperature of PCBM, initially weakened the P3HT:PCBM layer itself. Further annealing improved the cohesion, due to a pull-out toughening mechanism of the growing PCBM clusters. Understanding how the morphology, tuned by annealing, affects the adhesive and cohesive properties in these organic films is essential for the mechanical integrity of OPV devices.

  1. Transplantation of dental pulp stem cells improves long-term diabetic polyneuropathy together with improvement of nerve morphometrical evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omi, Maiko; Hata, Masaki; Nakamura, Nobuhisa; Miyabe, Megumi; Ozawa, Shogo; Nukada, Hitoshi; Tsukamoto, Masami; Sango, Kazunori; Himeno, Tatsuhito; Kamiya, Hideki; Nakamura, Jiro; Takebe, Jun; Matsubara, Tatsuaki; Naruse, Keiko

    2017-12-13

    Although previous reports have revealed the therapeutic potential of stem cell transplantation in diabetic polyneuropathy, the effects of cell transplantation on long-term diabetic polyneuropathy have not been investigated. In this study, we investigated whether the transplantation of dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) ameliorated long-term diabetic polyneuropathy in streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats. Forty-eight weeks after STZ injection, we transplanted DPSCs into the unilateral hindlimb skeletal muscles. Four weeks after DPSC transplantation (i.e., 52 weeks after STZ injection) the effects of DPSC transplantation on diabetic polyneuropathy were assessed. STZ-induced diabetic rats showed significant reductions in the sciatic motor/sensory nerve conduction velocity, increases in the current perception threshold, and decreases in capillary density in skeletal muscles and intra-epidermal nerve fiber density compared with normal rats, all of which were ameliorated by DPSC transplantation. Furthermore, sural nerve morphometrical analysis revealed that the transplantation of DPSCs significantly increased the myelin thickness and area. DPSC-conditioned media promoted the neurite outgrowth of dorsal root ganglion neurons and increased the viability and myelin-related protein expression of Schwann cells. These results indicated that the transplantation of DPSCs contributed to the neurophysiological and neuropathological recovery from a long duration of diabetic polyneuropathy.

  2. Prolonged exposure of colon cancer cells to 5-fluorouracil nanoparticles improves its anticancer activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Essam Tawfik

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we aimed to improve the anticancer effect of 5-FU on human colon cancer cell lines by incorporating in poly(d,l lactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA nanoparticles (NPs. The 5-FU-PLGA NPs were prepared by nanoprecipitation technique. Prepared NPs were moderately dispersed with an average diameter of 133 ± 25.19 nm. Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM images revealed spherical structures with subtle surface irregularity. Free 5-FU dose–response curves were constructed (12.5–2000 μM using MTT assay on HCT 116 and HT-29 cell lines for 1, 3, and 5 days. The calculated IC50 on HCT 116 were 185 μM after 1 day, 11.3 μM after 3 days, and 1.48 μM after 5 days. On HT-29, IC50 was only reached after 5 days of 5-FU treatment (11.25 μM. The HCT 116 viability following treatment with 100 μM 5-FU in free or NPs forms for 3 days was 38.8% and 18.6%, respectively. Similarly, when 250 μM was applied, HCT 116 viability was 17.03% and 14.6% after treatment with free and NPs forms of 5-FU, respectively. Moreover, HT-29 cell viability after 250 μM 5-FU treatment in free or NPs forms was 55.45% and 34.01%, respectively. We also noticed that HCT 116 cells were more sensitive to 5-FU-PLGA NPs as compared to HT-29 cells. Overall, our data indicate that 5-FU activity is time dependent and the prolonged effects created by PLGA NPs may contribute, at least in part, to the noticed enhancement of the anticancer activity of 5-FU drug.

  3. Barium titanate nanoparticles and hypergravity stimulation improve differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells into osteoblasts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rocca A

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Antonella Rocca,1,2 Attilio Marino,1,2 Veronica Rocca,3 Stefania Moscato,4 Giuseppe de Vito,5,6 Vincenzo Piazza,5 Barbara Mazzolai,1 Virgilio Mattoli,1 Thu Jennifer Ngo-Anh,7 Gianni Ciofani1 1Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Center for Micro-BioRobotics @SSSA, Pontedera, Italy, 2Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, The BioRobotics Institute, Pontedera, Italy, 3Università di Pisa, Dipartimento di Ingegneria dell’Informazione, Pisa, Italy, 4Università di Pisa, Dipartimento di Medicina Clinica e Sperimentale, Pisa, Italy, 5Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Center for Nanotechnology Innovation @NEST, Pisa, Italy, 6Scuola Normale Superiore, NEST, Pisa, Italy, 7Directorate of Human Spaceflight and Operations, European Space Agency, Noordwijk, the Netherlands Background: Enhancement of the osteogenic potential of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs is highly desirable in the field of bone regeneration. This paper proposes a new approach for the improvement of osteogenesis combining hypergravity with osteoinductive nanoparticles (NPs.Materials and methods: In this study, we aimed to investigate the combined effects of hypergravity and barium titanate NPs (BTNPs on the osteogenic differentiation of rat MSCs, and the hypergravity effects on NP internalization. To obtain the hypergravity condition, we used a large-diameter centrifuge in the presence of a BTNP-doped culture medium. We analyzed cell morphology and NP internalization with immunofluorescent staining and coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering, respectively. Moreover, cell differentiation was evaluated both at the gene level with quantitative real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction and at the protein level with Western blotting.Results: Following a 20 g treatment, we found alterations in cytoskeleton conformation, cellular shape and morphology, as well as a significant increment of expression of osteoblastic markers both at the gene and protein levels, jointly pointing to a substantial

  4. Multipotent human stromal cells improve cardiac function after myocardial infarction in mice without long-term engraftment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Iso, Yoshitaka; Spees, Jeffrey L.; Serrano, Claudia; Bakondi, Benjamin; Pochampally, Radhika; Song, Yao-Hua; Sobel, Burton E.; Delafontaine, Patrick; Prockop, Darwin J.

    2007-01-01

    The aim of this study was to determine whether intravenously administered multipotent stromal cells from human bone marrow (hMSCs) can improve cardiac function after myocardial infarction (MI) without long-term engraftment and therefore whether transitory paracrine effects or secreted factors are responsible for the benefit conferred. hMSCs were injected systemically into immunodeficient mice with acute MI. Cardiac function and fibrosis after MI in the hMSC-treated group were significantly improved compared with controls. However, despite the cardiac improvement, there was no evident hMSC engraftment in the heart 3 weeks after MI. Microarray assays and ELISAs demonstrated that multiple protective factors were expressed and secreted from the hMSCs in culture. Factors secreted by hMSCs prevented cell death of cultured cardiomyocytes and endothelial cells under conditions that mimicked tissue ischemia. The favorable effects of hMSCs appear to reflect the impact of secreted factors rather than engraftment, differentiation, or cell fusion

  5. Extracellular peptidase hunting for improvement of protein production in plant cells and roots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jérôme eLallemand

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Plant-based recombinant protein production systems have gained an extensive interest over the past few years, because of their reduced cost and relative safety. Although the first products are now reaching the market, progress are still needed to improve plant hosts and strategies for biopharming. Targeting recombinant proteins toward the extracellular space offers several advantages in terms of protein folding and purification, but degradation events are observed, due to endogenous peptidases. This paper focuses on the analysis of extracellular proteolytic activities in two production systems: cell cultures and root-secretion (rhizosecretion, in Arabidopsis thaliana and Nicotiana tabacum. Proteolytic activities of extracellular proteomes (secretomes were evaluated in vitro against two substrate proteins: bovine serum albumin (BSA and human serum immunoglobulins G (hIgGs. Both targets were found to be degraded by the secretomes, BSA being more prone to proteolysis than hIgGs. The analysis of the proteolysis pH-dependence showed that target degradation was mainly dependent upon the production system: rhizosecretomes contained more peptidase activity than extracellular medium of cell suspensions, whereas variations due to plant species were smaller. Using class-specific peptidase inhibitors, serine and metallopeptidases were found to be responsible for degradation of both substrates. An in-depth in silico analysis of genomic and transcriptomic data from Arabidopsis was then performed and led to the identification of a limited number of serine and metallo-peptidases that are consistently expressed in both production systems. These peptidases should be prime candidates for further improvement of plant hosts by targeted silencing.

  6. Improved flow cytometric assessment reveals distinct microvesicle (cell-derived microparticle signatures in joint diseases.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bence György

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Microvesicles (MVs, earlier referred to as microparticles, represent a major type of extracellular vesicles currently considered as novel biomarkers in various clinical settings such as autoimmune disorders. However, the analysis of MVs in body fluids has not been fully standardized yet, and there are numerous pitfalls that hinder the correct assessment of these structures. METHODS: In this study, we analyzed synovial fluid (SF samples of patients with osteoarthritis (OA, rheumatoid arthritis (RA and juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA. To assess factors that may confound MV detection in joint diseases, we used electron microscopy (EM, Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis (NTA and mass spectrometry (MS. For flow cytometry, a method commonly used for phenotyping and enumeration of MVs, we combined recent advances in the field, and used a novel approach of differential detergent lysis for the exclusion of MV-mimicking non-vesicular signals. RESULTS: EM and NTA showed that substantial amounts of particles other than MVs were present in SF samples. Beyond known MV-associated proteins, MS analysis also revealed abundant plasma- and immune complex-related proteins in MV preparations. Applying improved flow cytometric analysis, we demonstrate for the first time that CD3(+ and CD8(+ T-cell derived SF MVs are highly elevated in patients with RA compared to OA patients (p=0.027 and p=0.009, respectively, after Bonferroni corrections. In JIA, we identified reduced numbers of B cell-derived MVs (p=0.009, after Bonferroni correction. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that improved flow cytometric assessment of MVs facilitates the detection of previously unrecognized disease-associated vesicular signatures.

  7. Interface engineering of perovskite solar cells with multifunctional polymer interlayer toward improved performance and stability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Li-Bo; Su, Pei-Yang; Liu, Jun-Min; Huang, Jian-Feng; Chen, Yi-Fan; Qin, Su; Guo, Jing; Xu, Yao-Wei; Su, Cheng-Yong

    2018-02-01

    This work proposes a new perovskite solar cell structure by inserting a polymer interlayer between perovskite and hole transporting material (HTM) to minimize the interface losses via interface engineering. The multifunctional interlayers improve the photovoltaic efficiency and device stability by shielding perovskite from moisture, suppressing charge combination, and promoting hole transport. The five different polymer layers are utilized to investigate the relationships of polymer structure, layer morphology and cell performance systematically. It is found that a reliable power conversion efficiency exceeding 19.0% is realized based on P3HT/spiro-OMeTAD composite structure, surpassing that of pure spiro-OMeTAD (15.0%). Moreover, the device with P3HT interlayer shows more brilliant long-term stability than that without interlayer when exposed into moisture. The enhanced device performance based on P3HT interlayer compared with the other polymers can be ascribed to the long hydrophobic alkyl chains and the small molecule monomers of P3HT, which contribute to self-assembly of the polymers into insulating layers and formation of the efficient π-π stacking in polymer/spiro-OMeTAD interface simultaneously. This study provides a practical route for the integration of a new class of easily-accessible, solution-processed interfacial polymer materials for high-performance and long-time stable PSC.

  8. Intelligent structures based on the improved activation of shape memory polymers using Peltier cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Díaz Lantada, Andrés; Lafont Morgado, Pilar; Muñoz Sanz, José Luis; Muñoz García, Julio; Munoz-Guijosa, Juan Manuel; Echávarri Otero, Javier

    2010-01-01

    This study is focused on obtaining intelligent structures manufactured from shape memory polymers possessing the ability to change their geometry in successive or 'step-by-step' actions. This objective has been reached by changing the conventionally used shape memory activation systems (heating resistance, laser or induction heating). The solution set out consists in using Peltier cells as a heating system capable of heating (and activating) a specific zone of the device in the first activation, while the opposite zone keeps its original geometry. By carefully reversing the polarity of the electrical supply to the Peltier cell, in the second activation, the as yet unchanged zone is activated while the already changed zone in the first activation remains unaltered. We have described the criteria for the selection, calibration and design of this alternative heating (activation) system based on the thermoelectric effect, together with the development of different 'proof of concept' prototypes that have enabled us to validate the concepts put forward, as well as suggest future improvements for 'intelligent' shape memory polymer-based devices

  9. Integration of biomimicry and nanotechnology for significantly improved detection of circulating tumor cells (CTCs).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myung, Ja Hye; Park, Sin-Jung; Wang, Andrew Z; Hong, Seungpyo

    2017-12-13

    Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) have received a great deal of scientific and clinical attention as a biomarker for diagnosis and prognosis of many types of cancer. Given their potential significance in clinics, a variety of detection methods, utilizing the recent advances in nanotechnology and microfluidics, have been introduced in an effort of achieving clinically significant detection of CTCs. However, effective detection and isolation of CTCs still remain a tremendous challenge due to their extreme rarity and phenotypic heterogeneity. Among many approaches that are currently under development, this review paper focuses on a unique, promising approach that takes advantages of naturally occurring processes achievable through application of nanotechnology to realize significant improvement in sensitivity and specificity of CTC capture. We provide an overview of successful outcome of this biomimetic CTC capture system in detection of tumor cells from in vitro, in vivo, and clinical pilot studies. We also emphasize the clinical impact of CTCs as biomarkers in cancer diagnosis and predictive prognosis, which provides a cost-effective, minimally invasive method that potentially replaces or supplements existing methods such as imaging technologies and solid tissue biopsy. In addition, their potential prognostic values as treatment guidelines and that ultimately help to realize personalized therapy are discussed. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  10. Optimization of nanoparticle structure for improved conversion efficiency of dye solar cell

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mohamed, Norani Muti, E-mail: noranimuti-mohamed@petronas.com.my [Centre of Innovative Nanostructure and Nanodevices, Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS, Seri Iskandar, 31750 Tronoh, Perak (Malaysia); Zaine, Siti Nur Azella, E-mail: ct.azella@gmail.com.my [Fundamental and Applied Sciences Department, Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS, Seri Iskandar, 31750 Tronoh, Perak (Malaysia)

    2014-10-24

    Heavy dye loading and the ability to contain the light within the thin layer (typically ∼12 μm) are the requirement needed for the photoelectrode material in order to enhance the harvesting efficiency of dye solar cell. This can be realized by optimizing the particle size with desirable crystal structure. The paper reports the investigation on the dependency of the dye loading and light scattering on the properties of nanostructured photoelectrode materials by comparing 4 different samples of TiO{sub 2} in the form of nanoparticles and micron-sized TiO{sub 2} aggregates which composed of nanocrystallites. Their properties were evaluated by using scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction and UVVis spectroscopy while the performance of the fabricated test cells were measured using universal photovoltaic test system (UPTS) under 1000 W/cm{sup 2} intensity of radiation. Nano sized particles provide large surface area which allow for greater dye adsorption but have no ability to retain the incident light in the TiO{sub 2} film. In contrast, micron-sized particles in the form of aggregates can generate light scattering allowing the travelling distance of the light to be extended and increasing the interaction between the photons and dye molecules adsorb on TiO{sub 2}nanocrystallites. This resulted in an improvement in the conversion efficiency of the aggregates that demonstrates the close relation between light scattering effect and the structure of the photolectrode film.

  11. Improved Neural Regeneration with Olfactory Ensheathing Cell Inoculated PLGA Scaffolds in Spinal Cord Injury Adult Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Changxing Wang

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Every year, around the world, between 250000 and 500000 people suffer from spinal cord injury (SCI. This study investigated the potential for poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA complex inoculated with olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs to treat spinal cord injury in a rat model. Methods: OECs were identified by immunofluorescence based on the nerve growth factor receptor (NGFR p75. The Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan (BBB score, together with an inclined plane (IP test were used to detect functional recovery. Nissl staining along with the luxol fast blue (LFB staining were independently employed to illustrate morphological alterations. More so, immunofluorescence labeling of the glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP and the microtubule-associated protein-2 (MAP-2, representing astrocytes and neurons respectively, were investigated at time points of weeks 2 and 8 post-operation. Results: The findings showed enhanced locomotor recovery, axon myelination and better protected neurons post SCI when compared with either PLGA or untreated groups (P < 0.05. Conclusion: PLGA complexes inoculated with OECs improve locomotor functional recovery in transected spinal cord injured rat models, which is most likely due to the fact it is conducive to a relatively benevolent microenvironment, has nerve protective effects, as well as the ability to enhance remyelination, via a promotion of cell differentiation and inhibition of astrocyte formation.

  12. High-Efficiency Silicon/Organic Heterojunction Solar Cells with Improved Junction Quality and Interface Passivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Jian; Gao, Pingqi; Ling, Zhaoheng; Ding, Li; Yang, Zhenhai; Ye, Jichun; Cui, Yi

    2016-12-27

    Silicon/organic heterojunction solar cells (HSCs) based on conjugated polymers, poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS), and n-type silicon (n-Si) have attracted wide attention due to their potential advantages of high efficiency and low cost. However, the state-of-the-art efficiencies are still far from satisfactory due to the inferior junction quality. Here, facile treatments were applied by pretreating the n-Si wafer in tetramethylammonium hydroxide (TMAH) solution and using a capping copper iodide (CuI) layer on the PEDOT:PSS layer to achieve a high-quality Schottky junction. Detailed photoelectric characteristics indicated that the surface recombination was greatly suppressed after TMAH pretreatment, which increased the thickness of the interfacial oxide layer. Furthermore, the CuI capping layer induced a strong inversion layer near the n-Si surface, resulting in an excellent field effect passivation. With the collaborative improvements in the interface chemical and electrical passivation, a competitive open-circuit voltage of 0.656 V and a high fill factor of 78.1% were achieved, leading to a stable efficiency of over 14.3% for the planar n-Si/PEDOT:PSS HSCs. Our findings suggest promising strategies to further exploit the full voltage as well as efficiency potentials for Si/organic solar cells.

  13. Radiotherapy is associated with significant improvement in local and regional control in Merkel cell carcinoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kang Susan H

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Introduction Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC is a rare tumour of skin. This study is a retrospective audit of patients with MCC from St Vincent’s and Mater Hospital, Sydney, Australia. The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of radiotherapy (RT on the local and regional control of MCC lesions and survival of patients with MCC. Method The data bases in anatomical pathology, RT and surgery. We searched for patients having a diagnosis of MCC between 1996 and 2007. Patient, tumour and treatment characteristics were collected and analysed. Univariate survival analysis of categorical variables was conducted with the Kaplan-Meier method together with the Log-Rank test for statistical significance. Continuous variables were assessed using the Cox regression method. Multivariate analysis was performed for significant univariate results. Results Sixty seven patients were found. Sixty two who were stage I-III and were treated with radical intent were analysed. 68% were male. The median age was 74 years. Forty-two cases (68% were stage I or II, and 20 cases (32% were stage III. For the subset of 42 stage I and II patients, those that had RT to their primary site had a 2-year local recurrence free survival of 89% compared with 36% for patients not receiving RT (p Conclusions RT is associated with significant improvement in local and regional control in Merkel cell carcinoma. Immunosuppression is an important factor in overall survival.

  14. Allogeneic lymphocyte-licensed DCs expand T cells with improved antitumor activity and resistance to oxidative stress and immunosuppressive factors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chuan Jin

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Adoptive T-cell therapy of cancer is a treatment strategy where T cells are isolated, activated, in some cases engineered, and expanded ex vivo before being reinfused to the patient. The most commonly used T-cell expansion methods are either anti-CD3/CD28 antibody beads or the “rapid expansion protocol” (REP, which utilizes OKT-3, interleukin (IL-2, and irradiated allogeneic feeder cells. However, REP-expanded or bead-expanded T cells are sensitive to the harsh tumor microenvironment and often short-lived after reinfusion. Here, we demonstrate that when irradiated and preactivated allosensitized allogeneic lymphocytes (ASALs are used as helper cells to license OKT3-armed allogeneic mature dendritic cells (DCs, together they expand target T cells of high quality. The ASAL/DC combination yields an enriched Th1-polarizing cytokine environment (interferon (IFN-γ, IL-12, IL-2 and optimal costimulatory signals for T-cell stimulation. When genetically engineered antitumor T cells were expanded by this coculture system, they showed better survival and cytotoxic efficacy under oxidative stress and immunosuppressive environment, as well as superior proliferative response during tumor cell killing compared to the REP protocol. Our result suggests a robust ex vivo method to expand T cells with improved quality for adoptive cancer immunotherapy.

  15. Improved and targeted delivery of bioactive molecules to cells with magnetic layer-by-layer assembled microcapsules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlov, Anton M; Gabriel, Samantha A; Sukhorukov, Gleb B; Gould, David J

    2015-06-07

    Despite our increasing knowledge of cell biology and the recognition of an increasing repertoire of druggable intracellular therapeutic targets, there remain a limited number of approaches to deliver bioactive molecules to cells and even fewer that enable targeted delivery. Layer-by-layer (LbL) microcapsules are assembled using alternate layers of oppositely charged molecules and are potential cell delivery vehicles for applications in nanomedicine. There are a wide variety of charged molecules that can be included in the microcapsule structure including metal nanoparticles that introduce physical attributes. Delivery of bioactive molecules to cells with LbL microcapsules has recently been demonstrated, so in this study we explore the delivery of bioactive molecules (luciferase enzyme and plasmid DNA) to cells using biodegradable microcapsules containing a layer of magnetite nanoparticles. Interestingly, significantly improved intracellular luciferase enzyme activity (25 fold) and increased transfection efficiency with plasmid DNA (3.4 fold) was observed with magnetic microcapsules. The use of a neodymium magnet enabled efficient targeting of magnetic microcapsules which further improved the delivery efficiency of the cargoes as a consequence of increased microcapsule concentration at the magnetic site. Microcapsules were well tolerated by cells in these experiments and only displayed signs of toxicity at a capsule : cell ratio of 100 : 1 and with extended exposure. These studies illustrate how multi-functionalization of LbL microcapsules can improve and target delivery of bioactive molecules to cells.

  16. Improved and targeted delivery of bioactive molecules to cells with magnetic layer-by-layer assembled microcapsules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlov, Anton M.; Gabriel, Samantha A.; Sukhorukov, Gleb B.; Gould, David J.

    2015-05-01

    Despite our increasing knowledge of cell biology and the recognition of an increasing repertoire of druggable intracellular therapeutic targets, there remain a limited number of approaches to deliver bioactive molecules to cells and even fewer that enable targeted delivery. Layer-by-layer (LbL) microcapsules are assembled using alternate layers of oppositely charged molecules and are potential cell delivery vehicles for applications in nanomedicine. There are a wide variety of charged molecules that can be included in the microcapsule structure including metal nanoparticles that introduce physical attributes. Delivery of bioactive molecules to cells with LbL microcapsules has recently been demonstrated, so in this study we explore the delivery of bioactive molecules (luciferase enzyme and plasmid DNA) to cells using biodegradable microcapsules containing a layer of magnetite nanoparticles. Interestingly, significantly improved intracellular luciferase enzyme activity (25 fold) and increased transfection efficiency with plasmid DNA (3.4 fold) was observed with magnetic microcapsules. The use of a neodymium magnet enabled efficient targeting of magnetic microcapsules which further improved the delivery efficiency of the cargoes as a consequence of increased microcapsule concentration at the magnetic site. Microcapsules were well tolerated by cells in these experiments and only displayed signs of toxicity at a capsule : cell ratio of 100 : 1 and with extended exposure. These studies illustrate how multi-functionalization of LbL microcapsules can improve and target delivery of bioactive molecules to cells.

  17. Reduction of initial corrosion rate and improvement of cell adhesion through surface modification of biodegradable Mg alloy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Hyung-Seop; Lee, Sun Hee; Kim, Won-Joo; Jeon, Hojeong; Seok, Hyun-Kwang; Ahn, Jae-Pyung; Kim, Yu-Chan

    2015-01-01

    In this study, the surface modification of biodegradable pure Magnesium and Mg-5wt%Ca-1wt%Zn alloy was performed through immersion in HBSS, inorganic salt solution and cell media to reduce initial hydrogen evolution and improve cell adhesion. The formation of different CaP-like coatings from immersion of pure Mg and Mg alloy were observed using Cryo FIB analysis and their performances were measured through cell adhesion, quantification of released Mg ions, and cell cytotoxicity assays. The coating layers displayed significant reduction of initial corrosion rate, and cell adhesion for both pure Mg and Mg alloy appeared to be influenced by the amino acids and proteins in the cell media. In general, Mg alloy showed a denser coating layer with higher Ca contents, resulting in greater reduction of initial corrosion rate and improved cell adhesion, when compared to pure Mg. This is due to saturation of Ca around the corrosion site that provided much favorable environmental condition to produce denser calcium phosphate coating mixture. The result from this study suggests that the surface modification of biodegradable Mg alloy by immersion in alkaline solutions can be utilized to obtain ideal biodegradable orthopedic implant material with reduced initial hydrogen evolution rate and improved cell adhesion.

  18. Sodium fluorocitrate having protective effect on palmitate-induced beta cell death improves hyperglycemia in diabetic db/db mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Ik-Rak; Choi, Sung-E; Hong, Seung A; Hwang, Yoonjung; Kang, Yup

    2017-10-10

    Beta cell loss and insulin resistance play roles in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes. Elevated levels of free fatty acids in plasma might contribute to the loss of beta cells. The objective of this study was to find a chemical that could protect against palmitate-induced beta cell death and investigate whether such chemical could improve hyperglycemia in mouse model of type 2 diabetes. Sodium fluorocitrate (SFC), an aconitase inhibitor, was found to be strongly and specifically protective against palmitate-induced INS-1 beta cell death. However, the protective effect of SFC on palmitate-induced cell death was not likely to be due to its inhibitory activity for aconitase since inhibition or knockdown of aconitase failed to protect against palmitate-induced cell death. Since SFC inhibited the uptake of palmitate into INS-1 cells, reduced metabolism of fatty acids was thought to be involved in SFC's protective effect. Ten weeks of treatment with SFC in db/db diabetic mice reduced glucose level but remarkably increased insulin level in the plasma. SFC improved impairment of glucose-stimulated insulin release and also reduced the loss of beta cells in db/db mice. Conclusively, SFC possessed protective effect against palmitate-induced lipotoxicity and improved hyperglycemia in mouse model of type 2 diabetes.

  19. Improved functional assessment of osteoarthritic knee joint after chondrogenically induced cell treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ude, C C; Ng, M H; Chen, C H; Htwe, O; Amaramalar, N S; Hassan, S; Djordjevic, I; Rani, R A; Ahmad, J; Yahya, N M; Saim, A B; Idrus, R B Hj

    2015-08-01

    Our previous studies on osteoarthritis (OA) revealed positive outcome after chondrogenically induced cells treatment. Presently, the functional improvements of these treated OA knee joints were quantified followed by evaluation of the mechanical properties of the engineered cartilages. Baseline electromyogram (EMGs) were conducted at week 0 (pre-OA), on the locomotory muscles of nine un-castrated male sheep (Siamese long tail cross) divided into controls, adipose-derived stem cells (ADSCs) and bone marrow stem cells (BMSCs), before OA inductions. Subsequent recordings were performed at week 7 and week 31 which were post-OA and post-treatments. Afterwards, the compression tests of the regenerated cartilage were performed. Post-treatment EMG analysis revealed that the control sheep retained significant reductions in amplitudes at the right medial gluteus, vastus lateralis and bicep femoris, whereas BMSCs and ADSCs samples had no further significant reductions (P < 0.05). Grossly and histologically, the treated knee joints demonstrated the presence of regenerated neo cartilages evidenced by the fluorescence of PKH26 tracker. Based on the International Cartilage Repair Society scores (ICRS), they had significantly lower grades than the controls (P < 0.05). The compression moduli of the native cartilages and the engineered cartilages differed significantly at the tibia plateau, patella femoral groove and the patella; whereas at the medial femoral condyle, they had similar moduli of 0.69 MPa and 0.40-0.64 MPa respectively. Their compression strengths at all four regions were within ±10 MPa. The tissue engineered cartilages provided evidence of functional recoveries associated to the structural regenerations, and their mechanical properties were comparable with the native cartilage. Copyright © 2015 Osteoarthritis Research Society International. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Improving Performance via Blocking Layers in Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells Based on Nanowire Photoanodes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Luping; Xu, Cheng; Zhao, Yang; Chen, Shikai; Ziegler, Kirk J

    2015-06-17

    Electron recombination in dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) results in significant electron loss and performance degradation. However, the reduction of electron recombination via blocking layers in nanowire-based DSSCs has rarely been investigated. In this study, HfO2 or TiO2 blocking layers are deposited on nanowire surfaces via atomic layer deposition (ALD) to reduce electron recombination in nanowire-based DSSCs. The control cell consisting of ITO nanowires coated with a porous shell of TiO2 by TiCl4 treatment yields an efficiency of 2.82%. The efficiency increases dramatically to 5.38% upon the insertion of a 1.3 nm TiO2 compact layer between the nanowire surface and porous TiO2 shell. This efficiency enhancement implies that porous sol-gel coatings on nanowires (e.g., via TiCl4 treatment) result in significant electron recombination in nanowire-based DSSCs, while compact coatings formed by ALD are more advantageous because of their ability to act as a blocking layer. By comparing nanowire-based DSSCs with their nanoparticle-based counterparts, we find that the nanowire-based DSSCs suffer more severe electron recombination from ITO due to the much higher surface area exposed to the electrolyte. While the insertion of a high band gap compact layer of HfO2 between the interface of the conductive nanowire and TiO2 shell improves performance, a comparison of the cell performance between TiO2 and HfO2 compact layers indicates that charge collection is suppressed by the difference in energy states. Consequently, the use of high band gap materials at the interface of conductive nanowires and TiO2 is not recommended.

  1. LLC-PK(1) cells maintained in a new perfusion cell culture system exhibit an improved oxidative metabolism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Felder, Edward; Jennings, Paul; Seppi, Thomas; Pfaller, Walter

    2002-01-01

    Cultured renal proximal tubule cells dedifferentiate from an oxidative metabolism to high rates of glycolysis over time. There are many reasons why cells in culture dedifferentiate, not least being a lack of homogenous nutrient supply and poor oxygenation. To this end we have developed a new cell

  2. Improving outcomes for patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flowers, Christopher R; Sinha, Rajni; Vose, Julie M

    2010-01-01

    Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is the most commonly occurring form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in the western world. Until the mid 1990s the incidence of DLBCL increased in both sexes, across racial categories, and across all age groups except the very young, the etiology of most cases remains unknown. DLBCL is associated with an aggressive natural history, but it can be cured with combination chemotherapy regimens like cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone (CHOP), which has been the mainstay of therapy for several decades. Remarkable progress has been made in understanding the biological heterogeneity of DLBCL and in improving survival for DLBCL patients with novel combinations of chemotherapy and immunotherapy. Gene expression profiling (GEP) has uncovered DLBCL subtypes that have distinct clinical behaviors and prognoses, and the addition of the monoclonal antibody, rituximab, to CHOP has markedly improved outcomes. Future approaches to DLBCL management will use molecular signatures identified through GEP to provide prognostic information and to isolate therapeutic targets that are being evaluated for DLBCL patients who relapse or those with high risk disease. © 2010 American Cancer Society, Inc.

  3. Improvement in survival of patients with oral cavity squamous cell carcinoma: An international collaborative study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amit, Moran; Yen, Tzu-Chen; Liao, Chun-Ta; Chaturvedi, Pankaj; Agarwal, Jai Prakash; Kowalski, Luiz P; Ebrahimi, Ardalan; Clark, Jonathan R; Kreppel, Matthias; Zöller, Joachim; Fridman, Eran; Bolzoni, Villaret A; Shah, Jatin P; Binenbaum, Yoav; Patel, Snehal G; Gil, Ziv

    2013-12-15

    An association between the survival of patients with oral cavity squamous cell carcinoma (OCSCC) and advancements in diagnosis and therapy has not been established. This was a retrospective, longitudinal, international, population-based study of 2738 patients who underwent resection of OCSCC during 2 different decades. Characteristics of patients from 7 international cancer centers who received treatment between 1990 and 2000 (group A; n = 735) were compared with patients who received treatment between 2001 and 2011 (group B; n = 2003). Patients in group B had more advanced tumors and tended to develop distant metastases more frequently than patients in group A (P = .005). More group B patients underwent selective neck dissection and received adjuvant radiotherapy (P treatment, and early stage disease were independent predictors of a better outcome in multivariate analysis. The decade of treatment was an independent prognostic factor for cancer-specific mortality (hazard ratio, 0.42; 95% confidence interval, 0.3-0.6). The survival rate of patients with OCSCC improved significantly during the past 2 decades despite older age, more advanced disease stage, and a higher rate of distant metastases. The current results suggest that the prognosis for patients with OCSCC has improved over time, presumably because of advances in imaging and therapy. © 2013 American Cancer Society.

  4. Simulation study on improving efficiencies of perovskite solar cell: Introducing nano textures on it

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Ziang; Sun, Shuren; Wang, Wei; Qin, Laixiang; Yan, Yu; Hou, Ruixiang; Qin, G. G.

    2018-03-01

    We report that the power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of the planar CH3NH3PbI3 solar cells (SCs) can be largely improved by fabricating nano textures on the SC surface. With the finite difference time domain (FDTD) method, the ultimate efficiencies of the planar CH3NH3PbI3 SCs with two types of nano textures are investigated: the column-shaped nano hollow (CLNH) array and the cone-shaped nano hollow (CNNH) array. For the nano textured CH3NH3PbI3 SCs with photovoltaic layer depth in the range of 125 nm ∼ 500 nm, when the array period and filling fraction of the nano textures are optimized, in comparison with the planar ones, their PCE increased 42% ∼ 84% for the CLNH textured ones, and 52% ∼ 63% for the CNNH textured ones. As a conclusion, introduction of nano textures on the SC surface is a promising route for improving the PCEs of the perovskite SCs.

  5. Recovery Profiles of T-Cell Subsets Following Low-Dose Total Body Irradiation and Improvement With Cinnamon

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zheng, Xiaodan [Key Laboratory for Tumor Immunology and Traditional Chinese Medicine Immunology, Institute of Basic Medicine, Shandong Academy of Medical Sciences, Jinan (China); School of Medicine and Life Science, University of Jinan-Shandong Academy of Medical Science, Jinan (China); Guo, Yuqi [Key Laboratory for Tumor Immunology and Traditional Chinese Medicine Immunology, Institute of Basic Medicine, Shandong Academy of Medical Sciences, Jinan (China); Wang, Lei [Second Affiliated Hospital of Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Jinan (China); Zhang, Honghai [Key Laboratory for Tumor Immunology and Traditional Chinese Medicine Immunology, Institute of Basic Medicine, Shandong Academy of Medical Sciences, Jinan (China); Wang, Shaobo [Shandong University, Jinan (China); Wang, Li [Key Laboratory for Tumor Immunology and Traditional Chinese Medicine Immunology, Institute of Basic Medicine, Shandong Academy of Medical Sciences, Jinan (China); An, Lei [Key Laboratory for Tumor Immunology and Traditional Chinese Medicine Immunology, Institute of Basic Medicine, Shandong Academy of Medical Sciences, Jinan (China); School of Medicine and Life Science, University of Jinan-Shandong Academy of Medical Science, Jinan (China); Zhou, Xianbin; Li, Xia [Key Laboratory for Tumor Immunology and Traditional Chinese Medicine Immunology, Institute of Basic Medicine, Shandong Academy of Medical Sciences, Jinan (China); Yao, Chengfang, E-mail: yaocf9941@163.com [Key Laboratory for Tumor Immunology and Traditional Chinese Medicine Immunology, Institute of Basic Medicine, Shandong Academy of Medical Sciences, Jinan (China)

    2015-12-01

    Purpose: Inefficient T-cell reconstitution from x-ray–induced immune damage reduces antitumor response. To understand the profile of T-cell reconstitution after irradiation will overcome the barrier of antitumor immunity. This study aimed to identify the recovery profile of T-cell subsets following x-ray irradiation and to highlight the role of cinnamon on efficient T-cell restoration postexposure in the antitumor response. Methods and Materials: CD3{sup +}, CD8{sup +}, and CD4{sup +} T cells and Th1, Th2, Th17, and regulatory T (Treg) cells were evaluated at different time points after single low-dose total body irradiation (SLTBI) with or without cinnamon treatments. T-bet, GATA3, RORγt, and Foxp3 signaling specific for Th1, Th2, Th17, and Treg were also analyzed by RT-PCR assay. The effects of cinnamon on efficient T-cell subset reconstitution was confirmed in a lung melanoma model in irradiated mice. Results: Reconstitution of CD4{sup +} T cells was delayed more than that of CD8{sup +} T cells in T-cell restoration after SLTBI. The production of IFNγ by Th1 or Tc1 cells was sharply decreased and was accompanied by reduced T-bet mRNA, even when total T-cell numbers had recovered; the frequencies of Th17 and Treg cells and their specific transcription factors (RORγt and Foxp3, respectively) were obviously increased. Irradiation-induced inefficient T-cell reconstitution impaired the antitumor capacities in the lung melanoma model. Pretreatment with cinnamon in irradiated mice accelerated the generation of Th1 and reduced the differentiation of Treg cells by activating T-bet and limiting transcriptions of Foxp3. Improvement resulting from cinnamon pretreatment on the efficient T-cell recovery profile from SLTBI promoted antitumor immunity in the lung melanoma model. Conclusions: T-cell reconstitution from SLTBI was characterized by impaired Th1 and elevated Th17 and Treg cells. Cinnamon effectively improved the imbalance of T-cell subsets by promoting the

  6. Recovery Profiles of T-Cell Subsets Following Low-Dose Total Body Irradiation and Improvement With Cinnamon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zheng, Xiaodan; Guo, Yuqi; Wang, Lei; Zhang, Honghai; Wang, Shaobo; Wang, Li; An, Lei; Zhou, Xianbin; Li, Xia; Yao, Chengfang

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Inefficient T-cell reconstitution from x-ray–induced immune damage reduces antitumor response. To understand the profile of T-cell reconstitution after irradiation will overcome the barrier of antitumor immunity. This study aimed to identify the recovery profile of T-cell subsets following x-ray irradiation and to highlight the role of cinnamon on efficient T-cell restoration postexposure in the antitumor response. Methods and Materials: CD3 + , CD8 + , and CD4 + T cells and Th1, Th2, Th17, and regulatory T (Treg) cells were evaluated at different time points after single low-dose total body irradiation (SLTBI) with or without cinnamon treatments. T-bet, GATA3, RORγt, and Foxp3 signaling specific for Th1, Th2, Th17, and Treg were also analyzed by RT-PCR assay. The effects of cinnamon on efficient T-cell subset reconstitution was confirmed in a lung melanoma model in irradiated mice. Results: Reconstitution of CD4 + T cells was delayed more than that of CD8 + T cells in T-cell restoration after SLTBI. The production of IFNγ by Th1 or Tc1 cells was sharply decreased and was accompanied by reduced T-bet mRNA, even when total T-cell numbers had recovered; the frequencies of Th17 and Treg cells and their specific transcription factors (RORγt and Foxp3, respectively) were obviously increased. Irradiation-induced inefficient T-cell reconstitution impaired the antitumor capacities in the lung melanoma model. Pretreatment with cinnamon in irradiated mice accelerated the generation of Th1 and reduced the differentiation of Treg cells by activating T-bet and limiting transcriptions of Foxp3. Improvement resulting from cinnamon pretreatment on the efficient T-cell recovery profile from SLTBI promoted antitumor immunity in the lung melanoma model. Conclusions: T-cell reconstitution from SLTBI was characterized by impaired Th1 and elevated Th17 and Treg cells. Cinnamon effectively improved the imbalance of T-cell subsets by promoting the proliferation of Th1 and

  7. Improved tumor tissue penetration and tumor cell uptake achieved by delayed charge reversal nanoparticles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gou, Jingxin; Liang, Yuheng; Miao, Linlin; Guo, Wei; Chao, Yanhui; He, Haibing; Zhang, Yu; Yang, Jingyu; Wu, Chunfu; Yin, Tian; Wang, Yanjiao; Tang, Xing

    2017-10-15

    The high affinity of positively charged nanoparticles to biological interfaces makes them easily taken up by tumor cells but limits their tumor permeation due to non-specific electrostatic interactions. In this study, polyion complex coated nanoparticles with different charge reversal profiles were developed to study the influence of charge reversal profile on tumor penetration. The system was constructed by polyion complex coating using micelles composed of poly (lysine)-b-polycaprolactone (PLys-b-PCL) as the cationic core and poly (glutamic acid)-g- methoxyl poly (ethylene glycol) (PGlu-g-mPEG) as the anionic coating material. Manipulation of charge reversal profile was achieved by controlling the polymer chain entanglement and electrostatic interaction in the polyion complex layer through glutaraldehyde-induced shell-crosslinking. The delayed charge reversal nanoparticles (CTCL30) could maintain negatively charged in pH 6.5 PBS for at least 2h and exhibit pH-responsive cytotoxicity and cellular uptake in an extended time scale. Compared with a faster charge reversal counterpart (CTCL70) with similar pharmacokinetic profile, CTCL30 showed deeper penetration, higher in vivo tumor cell uptake and stronger antitumor activity in vivo (tumor inhibition rate: 72.3% vs 60.2%, compared with CTCL70). These results indicate that the delayed charge reversal strategy could improve therapeutic effect via facilitating tumor penetration. Here, the high tumor penetration capability of PEG-coated nanoparticles and the high cellular uptake of cationic nanoparticles were combined by a delayed charge reversal drug delivery system. This drug delivery system was composed of a drug-loading cationic inner core and a polyion complex coating. Manipulation of charge reversal profile was realized by varying the crosslinking degree of the shell of the cationic inner core, through which changed the strength of the polyion complex layer. Nanoparticles with delayed charge reversal profile

  8. Novel Contact Materials for Improved Performance CdTe Solar Cells Final Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rockett, Angus [Colorado School of Mines, Golden, CO (United States); Marsillac, Sylvain [Old Dominion Univ., Norfolk, VA (United States); Collins, Robert [Univesity of Toledo

    2018-04-15

    This program has explored a number of novel materials for contacts to CdTe solar cells in order to reduce the back contact Schottky barrier to zero and produce an ohmic contact. The project tested a wide range of potential contact materials including TiN, ZrN, CuInSe2:N, a-Si:H and alloys with C, and FeS2. Improved contacts were achieved with FeS2. As part of understanding the operation of the devices and controlling the deposition processes, a number of other important results were obtained. In the process of this project and following its conclusion it led to research that resulted in seven journal articles, nine conference publications, 13 talks presented at conferences, and training of eight graduate students. The seven journal articles were published in 2015, 2016, and 2017 and have been cited, as of March 2018, 52 times (one cited 19 times and two cited 11 times). We demonstrated high levels of doping of CIS with N but electrical activity of the resulting N was not high and the results were difficult to reproduce. Furthermore, even with high doping the contacts were not good. Annealing did not improve the contacts. A-Si:H was found to produce acceptable but unstable contacts, degrading even over a day or two, apparently due to H incorporation into the CdTe. Alloying with C did not improve the contacts or stability. The transition metal nitrides produced Schottky type contacts for all materials tested. While these contacts were found to be unsatisfactory, we investigated FeS2 and found this material to be effective and comparable to the best contacts currently available. The contacts were found to be chemically stable under heat treatment and preferable to Cu doped contacts. Thus, we demonstrated an improved contact material in the course of this project. In addition, we developed new ways of controlling the deposition of CdTe and other materials, demonstrated the nature of defects in CdTe, and studied the distribution of conductivity and carrier type in Cd

  9. Sustained epithelial beta-catenin activity induces precocious hair development but disrupts hair follicle down-growth and hair shaft formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Närhi, Katja; Järvinen, Elina; Birchmeier, Walter; Taketo, Makoto M; Mikkola, Marja L; Thesleff, Irma

    2008-03-01

    During embryonic and postnatal development, Wnt/beta-catenin signaling is involved in several stages of hair morphogenesis from placode formation to hair shaft differentiation. Using a transgenic approach, we have investigated further the role of beta-catenin signaling in embryonic hair development. Forced epithelial stabilization of beta-catenin resulted in precocious and excessive induction of hair follicles even in the absence of Eda/Edar signaling, a pathway essential for primary hair placode formation. In addition, the spacing and size of the placodes was randomized. Surprisingly, the down-growth of follicles was suppressed and hair shaft production was severely impaired. Gene and reporter expression analyses revealed elevated mesenchymal Wnt activity, as well as increased BMP signaling, throughout the skin that was accompanied by upregulation of Sostdc1 (Wise, ectodin) expression. Our data suggest that BMPs are downstream of Wnt/beta-catenin and that their interplay may be a critical component in establishing correct patterning of hair follicles through the reaction-diffusion mechanism.

  10. Change in body mass index and insulin resistance after 1-year treatment with gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists in girls with central precocious puberty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Jina; Kim, Jae Hyun

    2017-03-01

    Gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa) is used as a therapeutic agent for central precocious puberty (CPP); however, increased obesity may subsequently occur. This study compared body mass index (BMI) and insulin resistance during the first year of GnRHa treatment for CPP. Patient group included 83 girls (aged 7.0-8.9 years) with developed breasts and a peak luteinizing hormone level of ≥5 IU/L after GnRH stimulation. Control group included 48 prepubertal girls. BMI and insulin resistance-related indices (homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance [HOMA-IR] and quantitative insulin sensitivity check index [QUICKI]) were used to compare the groups before treatment, and among the patient group before and after GnRHa treatment. No statistical difference in BMI z -score was detected between the 2 groups before treatment. Fasting insulin and HOMA-IR were increased in the patient group; fasting glucose-to-insulin ratio and QUICKI were increased in the control group (all P resistance compared to the control group. During GnRHa treatment, normal-weight individuals showed increased BMI z -scores without increased insulin resistance; the overweight group demonstrated increased insulin resistance without significantly altered BMI z -scores. Long-term follow-up of BMI and insulin resistance changes in patients with CPP is required.

  11. Is olfactory detection of human cancer by dogs based on major histocompatibility complex-dependent odour components?--A possible cure and a precocious diagnosis of cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balseiro, S C; Correia, H R

    2006-01-01

    Given the reports made about dogs detecting cancer on the basis of odour, our hypothesis is that the volatile organic compounds produced by tumours, and detected by dogs, are products of MHC genes. Two lines of evidences support this hypothesis: (1) human body odour is genetically determined by MHC. These antigen molecules (HLA in humans) have soluble and detectable isoforms that are present in body fluids such as blood, urine and sweat; (2) there is a strong association between changes in HLA expression and cancer. Tumour transformation is frequently associated with low classical HLA class I molecules expression, namely HLA-A, HLA-B, and HLA-C. In addition, cancer is associated with high nonclassical HLA class I molecules expression, such as HLA-G and HLA-E. These evidences suggest that these HLA-associated olfactory cues of human cancer could be easily analysed, for example, by the "electronic nose", making possible a very precocious and reliable diagnostic of cancer. Because cancer immunescape mechanism is similar to that observed in the materno-fetal immune tolerance, we propose also that immunomodulatory abortifacients could be a good strategy in cancer treatment.

  12. Measurement of the Red Blood Cell Distribution Width Improves the Risk Prediction in Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    András Mihály Boros

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Objectives. Increases in red blood cell distribution width (RDW and NT-proBNP (N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide predict the mortality of chronic heart failure patients undergoing cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT. It was hypothesized that RDW is independent of and possibly even superior to NT-proBNP from the aspect of long-term mortality prediction. Design. The blood counts and serum NT-proBNP levels of 134 patients undergoing CRT were measured. Multivariable Cox regression models were applied and reclassification analyses were performed. Results. After separate adjustment to the basic model of left bundle branch block, beta blocker therapy, and serum creatinine, both the RDW > 13.35% and NT-proBNP > 1975 pg/mL predicted the 5-year mortality (n=57. In the final model including all variables, the RDW [HR = 2.49 (1.27–4.86; p=0.008] remained a significant predictor, whereas the NT-proBNP [HR = 1.18 (0.93–3.51; p=0.07] lost its predictive value. On addition of the RDW measurement, a 64% net reclassification improvement and a 3% integrated discrimination improvement were achieved over the NT-proBNP-adjusted basic model. Conclusions. Increased RDW levels accurately predict the long-term mortality of CRT patients independently of NT-proBNP. Reclassification analysis revealed that the RDW improves the risk stratification and could enhance the optimal patient selection for CRT.

  13. Altering Anode Thickness To Improve Power Production in Microbial Fuel Cells with Different Electrode Distances

    KAUST Repository

    Ahn, Yongtae

    2013-01-17

    A better understanding of how anode and separator physical properties affect power production is needed to improve energy and power production by microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Oxygen crossover from the cathode can limit power production by bacteria on the anode when using closely spaced electrodes [separator electrode assembly (SEA)]. Thick graphite fiber brush anodes, as opposed to thin carbon cloth, and separators have previously been examined as methods to reduce the impact of oxygen crossover on power generation. We examined here whether the thickness of the anode could be an important factor in reducing the effect of oxygen crossover on power production, because bacteria deep in the electrode could better maintain anaerobic conditions. Carbon felt anodes with three different thicknesses were examined to see the effects of thicker anodes in two configurations: widely spaced electrodes and SEA. Power increased with anode thickness, with maximum power densities (604 mW/m 2, 0.32 cm; 764 mW/m2, 0.64 cm; and 1048 mW/m2, 1.27 cm), when widely spaced electrodes (4 cm) were used, where oxygen crossover does not affect power generation. Performance improved slightly using thicker anodes in the SEA configuration, but power was lower (maximum of 689 mW/m2) than with widely spaced electrodes, despite a reduction in ohmic resistance to 10 Ω (SEA) from 51-62 Ω (widely spaced electrodes). These results show that thicker anodes can work better than thinner anodes but only when the anodes are not adversely affected by proximity to the cathode. This suggests that reducing oxygen crossover and improving SEA MFC performance will require better separators. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

  14. Improved biocompatibility and efficient labeling of neural stem cells with poly(L-lysine-coated maghemite nanoparticles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor M. Pongrac

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Background: Cell tracking is a powerful tool to understand cellular migration, dynamics, homing and function of stem cell transplants. Nanoparticles represent possible stem cell tracers, but they differ in cellular uptake and side effects. Their properties can be modified by coating with different biocompatible polymers. To test if a coating polymer, poly(L-lysine, can improve the biocompatibility of nanoparticles applied to neural stem cells, poly(L-lysine-coated maghemite nanoparticles were prepared and characterized. We evaluated their cellular uptake, the mechanism of internalization, cytotoxicity, viability and proliferation of neural stem cells, and compared them to the commercially available dextran-coated nanomag®-D-spio nanoparticles.Results: Light microscopy of Prussian blue staining revealed a concentration-dependent intracellular uptake of iron oxide in neural stem cells. The methyl thiazolyl tetrazolium assay and the calcein acetoxymethyl ester/propidium iodide assay demonstrated that poly(L-lysine-coated maghemite nanoparticles scored better than nanomag®-D-spio in cell labeling efficiency, viability and proliferation of neural stem cells. Cytochalasine D blocked the cellular uptake of nanoparticles indicating an actin-dependent process, such as macropinocytosis, to be the internalization mechanism for both nanoparticle types. Finally, immunocytochemistry analysis of neural stem cells after treatment with poly(L-lysine-coated maghemite and nanomag®-D-spio nanoparticles showed that they preserve their identity as neural stem cells and their potential to differentiate into all three major neural cell types (neurons, astrocytes and oligodendrocytes.Conclusion: Improved biocompatibility and efficient cell labeling makes poly(L-lysine-coated maghemite nanoparticles appropriate candidates for future neural stem cell in vivo tracking studies.

  15. REMOTE IN-CELL SAMPLING IMPROVEMENTS PROGRAM AT THESAVANNAH RIVER SITE (SRS) DEFENSE WASTE PROCESSING FACILITY (DWPF)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marzolf, A

    2007-01-01

    Remote Systems Engineering (RSE) of the Savannah River National Lab (SRNL) in combination with the Defense Waste Processing Facility(DWPF) Engineering and Operations has evaluated the existing equipment and processes used in the facility sample cells for 'pulling' samples from the radioactive waste stream and performing equipment in-cell repairs/replacements. RSE has designed and tested equipment for improving remote in-cell sampling evolutions and reducing the time required for in-cell maintenance of existing equipment. The equipment within the present process tank sampling system has been in constant use since the facility start-up over 17 years ago. At present, the method for taking samples within the sample cells produces excessive maintenance and downtime due to frequent failures relative to the sampling station equipment and manipulator. Location and orientation of many sampling stations within the sample cells is not conducive to manipulator operation. The overextension of manipulators required to perform many in-cell operations is a major cause of manipulator failures. To improve sampling operations and reduce downtime due to equipment maintenance, a Portable Sampling Station (PSS), wireless in-cell cameras, and new commercially available sampling technology has been designed, developed and/or adapted and tested. The uniqueness of the design(s), the results of the scoping tests, and the benefits relative to in-cell operation and reduction of waste are presented

  16. A Francisella tularensis live vaccine strain that improves stimulation of antigen-presenting cells does not enhance vaccine efficacy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitt, Deanna M; O'Dee, Dawn M; Horzempa, Joseph; Carlson, Paul E; Russo, Brian C; Bales, Jacqueline M; Brown, Matthew J; Nau, Gerard J

    2012-01-01

    Vaccination is a proven strategy to mitigate morbidity and mortality of infectious diseases. The methodology of identifying and testing new vaccine candidates could be improved with rational design and in vitro testing prior to animal experimentation. The tularemia vaccine, Francisella tularensis live vaccine strain (LVS), does not elicit complete protection against lethal challenge with a virulent type A Francisella strain. One factor that may contribute to this poor performance is limited stimulation of antigen-presenting cells. In this study, we examined whether the interaction of genetically modified LVS strains with human antigen-presenting cells correlated with effectiveness as tularemia vaccine candidates. Human dendritic cells infected with wild-type LVS secrete low levels of proinflammatory cytokines, fail to upregulate costimulatory molecules, and activate human T cells poorly in vitro. One LVS mutant, strain 13B47, stimulated higher levels of proinflammatory cytokines from dendritic cells and macrophages and increased costimulatory molecule expression on dendritic cells compared to wild type. Additionally, 13B47-infected dendritic cells activated T cells more efficiently than LVS-infected cells. A deletion allele of the same gene in LVS displayed similar in vitro characteristics, but vaccination with this strain did not improve survival after challenge with a virulent Francisella strain. In vivo, this mutant was attenuated for growth and did not stimulate T cell responses in the lung comparable to wild type. Therefore, stimulation of antigen-presenting cells in vitro was improved by genetic modification of LVS, but did not correlate with efficacy against challenge in vivo within this model system.

  17. A Francisella tularensis live vaccine strain that improves stimulation of antigen-presenting cells does not enhance vaccine efficacy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deanna M Schmitt

    Full Text Available Vaccination is a proven strategy to mitigate morbidity and mortality of infectious diseases. The methodology of identifying and testing new vaccine candidates could be improved with rational design and in vitro testing prior to animal experimentation. The tularemia vaccine, Francisella tularensis live vaccine strain (LVS, does not elicit complete protection against lethal challenge with a virulent type A Francisella strain. One factor that may contribute to this poor performance is limited stimulation of antigen-presenting cells. In this study, we examined whether the interaction of genetically modified LVS strains with human antigen-presenting cells correlated with effectiveness as tularemia vaccine candidates. Human dendritic cells infected with wild-type LVS secrete low levels of proinflammatory cytokines, fail to upregulate costimulatory molecules, and activate human T cells poorly in vitro. One LVS mutant, strain 13B47, stimulated higher levels of proinflammatory cytokines from dendritic cells and macrophages and increased costimulatory molecule expression on dendritic cells compared to wild type. Additionally, 13B47-infected dendritic cells activated T cells more efficiently than LVS-infected cells. A deletion allele of the same gene in LVS displayed similar in vitro characteristics, but vaccination with this strain did not improve survival after challenge with a virulent Francisella strai