WorldWideScience

Sample records for human biology majors

  1. Aberrant free radical biology is a unifying theme in the etiology and pathogenesis of major human diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domann, Frederick E

    2013-04-17

    The seemingly disparate areas of oxygen toxicity, radiation exposure, and aging are now recognized to share a common feature-the aberrant production and/or removal of biologically derived free radicals and other reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS/RNS). Advances in our understanding of the effects of free radicals in biology and medicine have been, and continue to be, actively translated into clinically tractable diagnostic and therapeutic applications. This issue is dedicated to recent advances, both basic discoveries and clinical applications, in the field of free radicals in biology and medicine. As more is understood about the proximal biological targets of aberrantly produced or removed reactive species, their sensors, and effectors of compensatory response, a great deal more will be learned about the commonalities in mechanisms underlying seemingly disparate disease states. Together with this deeper understanding, opportunities will arise to devise rational therapeutic interventions to decrease the incidence and severity of these diseases and positively impact the human healthspan.

  2. Aberrant Free Radical Biology Is a Unifying Theme in the Etiology and Pathogenesis of Major Human Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frederick E. Domann

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The seemingly disparate areas of oxygen toxicity, radiation exposure, and aging are now recognized to share a common feature—the aberrant production and/or removal of biologically derived free radicals and other reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS/RNS. Advances in our understanding of the effects of free radicals in biology and medicine have been, and continue to be, actively translated into clinically tractable diagnostic and therapeutic applications. This issue is dedicated to recent advances, both basic discoveries and clinical applications, in the field of free radicals in biology and medicine. As more is understood about the proximal biological targets of aberrantly produced or removed reactive species, their sensors, and effectors of compensatory response, a great deal more will be learned about the commonalities in mechanisms underlying seemingly disparate disease states. Together with this deeper understanding, opportunities will arise to devise rational therapeutic interventions to decrease the incidence and severity of these diseases and positively impact the human healthspan.

  3. Do Biology Majors Really Differ from Non–STEM Majors?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotner, Sehoya; Thompson, Seth; Wright, Robin

    2017-01-01

    Recent calls to action urge sweeping reform in science education, advocating for improved learning for all students—including those majoring in fields beyond the sciences. However, little work has been done to characterize the differences—if any exist—between students planning a career in science and those studying other disciplines. We describe an attempt to clarify, in broad terms, how non–STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) majors differ from life sciences majors, and how they are similar. Using survey responses and institutional data, we find that non–STEM majors are not unilaterally science averse; non–STEM majors are more likely than biology majors to hold misconceptions about the nature of science, yet they are not completely ignorant of how science works; non–STEM majors are less likely than biology majors to see science as personally relevant; and non–STEM majors populations are likely to be more diverse—with respect to incoming knowledge, perceptions, backgrounds, and skills—than a biology majors population. We encourage science educators to consider these characteristics when designing curricula for future scientists or simply for a well-informed citizenry. PMID:28798210

  4. Aberrant Free Radical Biology Is a Unifying Theme in the Etiology and Pathogenesis of Major Human Diseases

    OpenAIRE

    2013-01-01

    The seemingly disparate areas of oxygen toxicity, radiation exposure, and aging are now recognized to share a common feature—the aberrant production and/or removal of biologically derived free radicals and other reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS/RNS). Advances in our understanding of the effects of free radicals in biology and medicine have been, and continue to be, actively translated into clinically tractable diagnostic and therapeutic applications. This issue is dedicated to recent...

  5. Relations between intuitive biological thinking and biological misconceptions in biology majors and nonmajors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coley, John D; Tanner, Kimberly

    2015-03-02

    Research and theory development in cognitive psychology and science education research remain largely isolated. Biology education researchers have documented persistent scientifically inaccurate ideas, often termed misconceptions, among biology students across biological domains. In parallel, cognitive and developmental psychologists have described intuitive conceptual systems--teleological, essentialist, and anthropocentric thinking--that humans use to reason about biology. We hypothesize that seemingly unrelated biological misconceptions may have common origins in these intuitive ways of knowing, termed cognitive construals. We presented 137 undergraduate biology majors and nonmajors with six biological misconceptions. They indicated their agreement with each statement, and explained their rationale for their response. Results indicate frequent agreement with misconceptions, and frequent use of construal-based reasoning among both biology majors and nonmajors in their written explanations. Moreover, results also show associations between specific construals and the misconceptions hypothesized to arise from those construals. Strikingly, such associations were stronger among biology majors than nonmajors. These results demonstrate important linkages between intuitive ways of thinking and misconceptions in discipline-based reasoning, and raise questions about the origins, persistence, and generality of relations between intuitive reasoning and biological misconceptions.

  6. Relations between Intuitive Biological Thinking and Biological Misconceptions in Biology Majors and Nonmajors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coley, John D.; Tanner, Kimberly

    2015-01-01

    Research and theory development in cognitive psychology and science education research remain largely isolated. Biology education researchers have documented persistent scientifically inaccurate ideas, often termed misconceptions, among biology students across biological domains. In parallel, cognitive and developmental psychologists have described intuitive conceptual systems—teleological, essentialist, and anthropocentric thinking—that humans use to reason about biology. We hypothesize that seemingly unrelated biological misconceptions may have common origins in these intuitive ways of knowing, termed cognitive construals. We presented 137 undergraduate biology majors and nonmajors with six biological misconceptions. They indicated their agreement with each statement, and explained their rationale for their response. Results indicate frequent agreement with misconceptions, and frequent use of construal-based reasoning among both biology majors and nonmajors in their written explanations. Moreover, results also show associations between specific construals and the misconceptions hypothesized to arise from those construals. Strikingly, such associations were stronger among biology majors than nonmajors. These results demonstrate important linkages between intuitive ways of thinking and misconceptions in discipline-based reasoning, and raise questions about the origins, persistence, and generality of relations between intuitive reasoning and biological misconceptions. PMID:25713093

  7. Overview of the taxonomy and of the major secondary metabolites and their biological activities related to human health of the Laurencia complex (Ceramiales, Rhodophyta from Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mutue T. Fujii

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available In Brazil, the Laurencia complex is represented by twenty taxa: Laurencia s.s. with twelve species, Palisada with four species (including Chondrophycus furcatus now that the proposal of its transference to Palisada is in process, and Osmundea and Yuzurua with two species each. The majority of the Brazilian species of the Laurencia complex have been phylogenetically analyzed by 54 rbcL sequences, including five other Rhodomelacean species as outgroups. The analysis showed that the Laurencia complex is monophyletic with high posterior probability value. The complex was separated into five clades, corresponding to the genera: Chondrophycus, Laurencia, Osmundea, Palisada, and Yuzurua. A bibliographical survey of the terpenoids produced by Brazilian species showed that only six species of Laurencia and five of Palisada (including C. furcatcus have been submitted to chemical analysis with 48 terpenoids (47 sesquiterpenes and one triterpene isolated. No diterpenes were found. Of the total, 23 sesquiterpenes belong to the bisabolane class and eighteen to the chamigrene type, whose biochemical precursor is bisabolane, two are derived from lauranes and four are triquinols. Despite the considerable number of known terpenes and their ecological and pharmacological importance, few experimental biological studies have been performed. In this review, only bioactivities related to human health were considered.

  8. Major transitions in human evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foley, Robert A.; Martin, Lawrence; Mirazón Lahr, Marta; Stringer, Chris

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary problems are often considered in terms of ‘origins', and research in human evolution seen as a search for human origins. However, evolution, including human evolution, is a process of transitions from one state to another, and so questions are best put in terms of understanding the nature of those transitions. This paper discusses how the contributions to the themed issue ‘Major transitions in human evolution’ throw light on the pattern of change in hominin evolution. Four questions are addressed: (1) Is there a major divide between early (australopithecine) and later (Homo) evolution? (2) Does the pattern of change fit a model of short transformations, or gradual evolution? (3) Why is the role of Africa so prominent? (4) How are different aspects of adaptation—genes, phenotypes and behaviour—integrated across the transitions? The importance of developing technologies and approaches and the enduring role of fieldwork are emphasized. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Major transitions in human evolution’. PMID:27298461

  9. Major transitions in human evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foley, Robert A; Martin, Lawrence; Mirazón Lahr, Marta; Stringer, Chris

    2016-07-05

    Evolutionary problems are often considered in terms of 'origins', and research in human evolution seen as a search for human origins. However, evolution, including human evolution, is a process of transitions from one state to another, and so questions are best put in terms of understanding the nature of those transitions. This paper discusses how the contributions to the themed issue 'Major transitions in human evolution' throw light on the pattern of change in hominin evolution. Four questions are addressed: (1) Is there a major divide between early (australopithecine) and later (Homo) evolution? (2) Does the pattern of change fit a model of short transformations, or gradual evolution? (3) Why is the role of Africa so prominent? (4) How are different aspects of adaptation-genes, phenotypes and behaviour-integrated across the transitions? The importance of developing technologies and approaches and the enduring role of fieldwork are emphasized.This article is part of the themed issue 'Major transitions in human evolution'. © 2016 The Author(s).

  10. Biological Databases for Human Research

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Dong Zou; Lina Ma; Jun Yu; Zhang Zhang

    2015-01-01

    The completion of the Human Genome Project lays a foundation for systematically studying the human genome from evolutionary history to precision medicine against diseases. With the explosive growth of biological data, there is an increasing number of biological databases that have been developed in aid of human-related research. Here we present a collection of human-related biological databases and provide a mini-review by classifying them into different categories according to their data types. As human-related databases continue to grow not only in count but also in volume, challenges are ahead in big data storage, processing, exchange and curation.

  11. Biological Databases for Human Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Dong; Ma, Lina; Yu, Jun; Zhang, Zhang

    2015-01-01

    The completion of the Human Genome Project lays a foundation for systematically studying the human genome from evolutionary history to precision medicine against diseases. With the explosive growth of biological data, there is an increasing number of biological databases that have been developed in aid of human-related research. Here we present a collection of human-related biological databases and provide a mini-review by classifying them into different categories according to their data types. As human-related databases continue to grow not only in count but also in volume, challenges are ahead in big data storage, processing, exchange and curation. PMID:25712261

  12. Agriculture and Biology Teaching. Biology and Human Welfare.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, A. N.; Pritchard, Alan J.

    This six-chapter document (part of a series on biology and human welfare) focuses on agriculture and the teaching of this subject area. Major topic areas considered in the first five chapters are: (1) the development of agriculture; (2) agricosystems (considering agriculture as an ecosystem, land utilization and soils, soils and food production,…

  13. Freshman Biology Majors' Misconceptions about Diffusion and Osmosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Odom, A. Louis; Barrow, Lloyd H.

    The data for this study were obtained from a sample of 117 biology majors enrolled in an introductory biology course. The Diffusion and Osmosis Diagnostic Test, composed of 12 two-tier items, was administered to the students. Among the major findings are: (1) there was no significant difference in scores of male and female students; (2) math…

  14. Biological markets explain human ultrasociality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheskin, Mark; Lambert, Stéphane; Baumard, Nicolas

    2016-01-01

    The evidence Gowdy & Krall (G&K) provide is more consistent with a biological markets explanation of human ultrasociality than a group selection explanation. Specifically, large-scale societies provide a better biological market for cooperation than do small-scale societies, allowing individuals to increase their fitness. Importantly, many of the quality-of-life costs G&K discuss (e.g., patriarchy) are not fitness costs.

  15. Relations between Intuitive Biological Thinking and Biological Misconceptions in Biology Majors and Nonmajors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coley, John D.; Tanner, Kimberly

    2015-01-01

    Research and theory development in cognitive psychology and science education research remain largely isolated. Biology education researchers have documented persistent scientifically inaccurate ideas, often termed "misconceptions," among biology students across biological domains. In parallel, cognitive and developmental psychologists…

  16. Teaching Information Literacy Skills to Sophomore-Level Biology Majors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leigh Thompson

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Many undergraduate students lack a sound understanding of information literacy. The skills that comprise information literacy are particularly important when combined with scientific writing for biology majors as they are the foundation skills necessary to complete upper-division biology course assignments, better train students for research projects, and prepare students for graduate and professional education. To help undergraduate biology students develop and practice information literacy and scientific writing skills, a series of three one-hour hands-on library sessions, discussions, and homework assignments were developed for Biological Literature, a one-credit, one-hour-per-week, required sophomore-level course. The embedded course librarian developed a learning exercise that reviewed how to conduct database and web searches, the difference between primary and secondary sources, source credibility, and how to access articles through the university’s databases. Students used the skills gained in the library training sessions for later writing assignments including a formal lab report and annotated bibliography. By focusing on improving information literacy skills as well as providing practice in scientific writing, Biological Literature students are better able to meet the rigors of upper-division biology courses and communicate research findings in a more professional manner.

  17. Teaching information literacy skills to sophomore-level biology majors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Leigh; Blankinship, Lisa Ann

    2015-05-01

    Many undergraduate students lack a sound understanding of information literacy. The skills that comprise information literacy are particularly important when combined with scientific writing for biology majors as they are the foundation skills necessary to complete upper-division biology course assignments, better train students for research projects, and prepare students for graduate and professional education. To help undergraduate biology students develop and practice information literacy and scientific writing skills, a series of three one-hour hands-on library sessions, discussions, and homework assignments were developed for Biological Literature, a one-credit, one-hour-per-week, required sophomore-level course. The embedded course librarian developed a learning exercise that reviewed how to conduct database and web searches, the difference between primary and secondary sources, source credibility, and how to access articles through the university's databases. Students used the skills gained in the library training sessions for later writing assignments including a formal lab report and annotated bibliography. By focusing on improving information literacy skills as well as providing practice in scientific writing, Biological Literature students are better able to meet the rigors of upper-division biology courses and communicate research findings in a more professional manner.

  18. The human gut virome: a multifaceted majority

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lesley Ann Ogilvie

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Here we outline our current understanding of the human gut virome, in particular the phage component of this ecosystem, highlighting progress and challenges in viral discovery in this arena. We reveal how developments in high-throughput sequencing technologies and associated data analysis methodologies are helping to illuminate this abundant ‘biological dark matter’. Current evidence suggests that the human gut virome is a highly individual but temporally stable collective, dominated by phage exhibiting a temperate lifestyle. This viral community also appears to encode a surprisingly rich functional repertoire that confers a range of attributes to their bacterial hosts, ranging from bacterial virulence and pathogenesis to maintaining host-microbiome stability and community resilience. Despite the significant advances in our understanding of the gut virome in recent years, it is clear that we remain in a period of discovery and revelation, as new methods and technologies begin to provide deeper understanding of the inherent ecological characteristics of this viral ecosystem. As our understanding increases, the nature of the multi-partite interactions occurring between host and microbiome will become clearer, helping us to more rationally define the concepts and principles that will underpin approaches to using human gut virome components for medical or biotechnological applications.

  19. Developing "Green" Business Plans: Using Entrepreneurship to Teach Science to Business Administration Majors and Business to Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Letovsky, Robert; Banschbach, Valerie S.

    2011-01-01

    Biology majors team with business administration majors to develop proposals for "green" enterprise for a business plan competition. The course begins with a series of student presentations so that science students learn about the fundamentals of business, and business students learn about environmental biology. Then mixed biology-business student…

  20. Human Biology teaching portfolio for education subject Biology

    OpenAIRE

    Hlasová, Zuzana

    2011-01-01

    The aim of the thesis is to create a teaching portfolio with special attention to the educational content of Human Biology. Instructional manuals are created for teaching natural science at primary school and are focused on selected systems in Biology of the human being, which are: muscle system, breathing system, circulation system, digest system, sensuous system, and a chapter about nourishment. Regarding the present?day School educational programmes the teachers themselves choose the year ...

  1. Marine Biology and Human Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russell, F. S.

    1976-01-01

    Marine biology has become an important area for study throughout the world. The author of this article discusses some of the important discoveries and fields of research in marine biology that are useful for mankind. Topics include food from the sea, fish farming, pesticides, pollution, and conservation. (MA)

  2. Culture, Urbanism and Changing Human Biology

    OpenAIRE

    Schell, L M

    2014-01-01

    Anthropologists have long known that human activity driven by culture changes the environment. This is apparent in the archaeological record and through the study of the modern environment. Perhaps the largest change since the paleolithic era is the organization of human populations in cities. New environments can reshape human biology through evolution as shown by the evolution of the hominid lineage. Evolution is not the only process capable of reshaping our biology. Some changes in our hum...

  3. Microbial synthetic biology for human therapeutics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Aastha; Bhatia, Pooja; Chugh, Archana

    2012-06-01

    The emerging field of synthetic biology holds tremendous potential for developing novel drugs to treat various human conditions. The current study discusses the scope of synthetic biology for human therapeutics via microbial approach. In this context, synthetic biology aims at designing, engineering and building new microbial synthetic cells that do not pre-exist in nature as well as re-engineer existing microbes for synthesis of therapeutic products. It is expected that the construction of novel microbial genetic circuitry for human therapeutics will greatly benefit from the data generated by 'omics' approaches and multidisciplinary nature of synthetic biology. Development of novel antimicrobial drugs and vaccines by engineering microbial systems are a promising area of research in the field of synthetic biology for human theragnostics. Expression of plant based medicinal compounds in the microbial system using synthetic biology tools is another avenue dealt in the present study. Additionally, the study suggest that the traditional medicinal knowledge can do value addition for developing novel drugs in the microbial systems using synthetic biology tools. The presented work envisions the success of synthetic biology for human therapeutics via microbial approach in a holistic manner. Keeping this in view, various legal and socio-ethical concerns emerging from the use of synthetic biology via microbial approach such as patenting, biosafety and biosecurity issues have been touched upon in the later sections.

  4. Systems biology of human atherosclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shalhoub, Joseph; Sikkel, Markus B; Davies, Kerry J; Vorkas, Panagiotis A; Want, Elizabeth J; Davies, Alun H

    2014-01-01

    Systems biology describes a holistic and integrative approach to understand physiology and pathology. The "omic" disciplines include genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolic profiling (metabonomics and metabolomics). By adopting a stance, which is opposing (yet complimentary) to conventional research techniques, systems biology offers an overview by assessing the "net" biological effect imposed by a disease or nondisease state. There are a number of different organizational levels to be understood, from DNA to protein, metabolites, cells, organs and organisms, even beyond this to an organism's context. Systems biology relies on the existence of "nodes" and "edges." Nodes are the constituent part of the system being studied (eg, proteins in the proteome), while the edges are the way these constituents interact. In future, it will be increasingly important to collaborate, collating data from multiple studies to improve data sets, making them freely available and undertaking integrative analyses.

  5. The human biology of Jim Tanner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cameron, Noël

    2012-09-01

    In 1940, during his second year of medical training, Jim Tanner expressed the desire to work, 'where physiology, psychology and sociology meet'. His subsequent exposure to the breadth of an American medical education and to the social and economic environment of post-war Europe distilled his belief in the importance of viewing the human in a broad context. Following his visits to the American longitudinal growth studies in 1948. Jim's dreams of a broad scientific discipline that incorporated both the biology and ecology of the human were strengthened by an inspirational group of embryonic human biologists with whom he developed '… the new Human Biology …' from the '… Physical Anthropology of old…'. With Jo Weiner, Derek Roberts, Geoffrey Harrison, Arthur Mourant, Nigel Barnicot and Kenneth Oakley, Jim was to form the Society for the Study of Human Biology in 1958. The development of human biology over the next 50 years was shaped by the expertise and diversity of that group of visionary scientists who conceived the scientific discipline of 'human biology' in which biology, behaviour and social context define the human species.

  6. Raymond Pearl and the shaping of human biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Little, Michael A; Garruto, Ralph M

    2010-02-01

    Raymond Pearl (1879-1940) was a significant figure in the field of biology. He founded the journal Human Biology and almost single-handedly promoted and established the scientific discipline of human biology. His scientific versatility was one of his most important features during the first four decades of the 20th century, and he played a major role in developing the fields of biodemography, human population biology, human life-cycle and life span approaches, fertility, growth, the biology of longevity and senescence, and mortality. He was one of the earliest biologists to combine biometric analyses and experimental studies to explore the dimensions of human biology. Pearl also was broadly educated in the arts, music, literature, history, the classics, and science. His writing was sophisticated and often witty, and his views were sometimes provocative and controversial. His network of colleagues and friends among the literary and science worlds was substantial. The following biographical memoir of Raymond Pearl is designed to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the founding of his journal Human Biology and is a tribute to this great scientist. Pearl's sudden death at age 61 truncated a scientific career that was one of the most productive of the 20th century.

  7. STS-based education in non-majors college biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Phyllis Lee

    The study explored the effect of the science-technology-society (STS) and traditional teaching methods in non-majors biology classes at a community college. It investigated the efficacy of the two methods in developing cognitive abilities at Bloom's first three levels of learning. It compared retention rates in classes taught in the two methods. Changes in student attitude relating to anxiety, fear, and interest in biology were explored. The effect of each method on grade attainment among men and women was investigated. The effect of each method on grade attainment among older and younger students was examined. Results of the study indicated that no significant differences, relating to retention or student attitude, existed in classes taught in the two methods. The study found no significant cognitive gains at Bloom's first three levels in classes taught in the traditional format. In the STS classes no significant gains were uncovered at Bloom's first level of cognition. Statistically significant gains were found in the STS classes at Bloom's second and third levels of cognition. In the classes taught in the traditional format no difference was identified in grade attainment between males and females. In the STS-based classes a small correlational difference between males and females was found with males receiving lower grades than expected. No difference in grade attainment was found between older and younger students taught in the traditional format. In the STS-based classes a small statistically significant difference in grade attainment was uncovered between older and younger students with older students receiving more A's and fewer C's than expected. This study found no difference in the grades of older, female students as compared to all other students in the traditionally taught classes. A weak statistically significant difference was discovered between grade attainment of older, female students and all other students in the STS classes with older, female

  8. Teaching Emergence and Collective Behavior in Physics and Biology to Non-majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manhart, Michael

    2014-03-01

    Emergence and collective behavior form one of the most fertile intersections of physics and biology in current research. Unfortunately, modern and interdisciplinary concepts such as these are often neglected in physics courses for non-majors. A team of four graduate students and a faculty advisor recently redesigned our department's course for non-majors (Concepts of Physics for Humanities and Social Science Students) to focus on emergence and collective behavior along with three other major themes in modern physics. In the course we developed basic concepts of statistical physics and thermodynamics to understand a variety of emergent phenomena in physics and biology, including bird flocking, superconductivity, and protein folding. We discussed the notion of life itself as an inherently emergent phenomenon arising from the collective behavior of molecules. The students also wrote their own blog posts on emergent phenomena and interactively explored emergence through workshops on Foldit (the protein folding game) and Conway's Game of Life. We believe our course demonstrates some possibilities and challenges for teaching non-majors at the intersection of physics and biology. I gratefully acknowledge my collaboration with Aatish Bhatia, Deepak Iyer, Simon Knapen, and Saurabh Jha.

  9. Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC Markers in Conservation Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine Belov

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Human impacts through habitat destruction, introduction of invasive species and climate change are increasing the number of species threatened with extinction. Decreases in population size simultaneously lead to reductions in genetic diversity, ultimately reducing the ability of populations to adapt to a changing environment. In this way, loss of genetic polymorphism is linked with extinction risk. Recent advances in sequencing technologies mean that obtaining measures of genetic diversity at functionally important genes is within reach for conservation programs. A key region of the genome that should be targeted for population genetic studies is the Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC. MHC genes, found in all jawed vertebrates, are the most polymorphic genes in vertebrate genomes. They play key roles in immune function via immune-recognition and -surveillance and host-parasite interaction. Therefore, measuring levels of polymorphism at these genes can provide indirect measures of the immunological fitness of populations. The MHC has also been linked with mate-choice and pregnancy outcomes and has application for improving mating success in captive breeding programs. The recent discovery that genetic diversity at MHC genes may protect against the spread of contagious cancers provides an added impetus for managing and protecting MHC diversity in wild populations. Here we review the field and focus on the successful applications of MHC-typing for conservation management. We emphasize the importance of using MHC markers when planning and executing wildlife rescue and conservation programs but stress that this should not be done to the detriment of genome-wide diversity.

  10. Biological bases of human musicality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perrone-Capano, Carla; Volpicelli, Floriana; di Porzio, Umberto

    2017-01-20

    Music is a universal language, present in all human societies. It pervades the lives of most human beings and can recall memories and feelings of the past, can exert positive effects on our mood, can be strongly evocative and ignite intense emotions, and can establish or strengthen social bonds. In this review, we summarize the research and recent progress on the origins and neural substrates of human musicality as well as the changes in brain plasticity elicited by listening or performing music. Indeed, music improves performance in a number of cognitive tasks and may have beneficial effects on diseased brains. The emerging picture begins to unravel how and why particular brain circuits are affected by music. Numerous studies show that music affects emotions and mood, as it is strongly associated with the brain's reward system. We can therefore assume that an in-depth study of the relationship between music and the brain may help to shed light on how the mind works and how the emotions arise and may improve the methods of music-based rehabilitation for people with neurological disorders. However, many facets of the mind-music connection still remain to be explored and enlightened.

  11. Evolution and Personal Religious Belief: Christian University Biology-Related Majors' Search for Reconciliation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winslow, Mark W.; Staver, John R.; Scharmann, Lawrence C.

    2011-01-01

    The goal of this study was to explore Christian biology-related majors' perceptions of conflicts between evolution and their religious beliefs. This naturalistic study utilized a case study design of 15 undergraduate biology-related majors at or recent biology-related graduates from a mid-western Christian university. The broad sources of data…

  12. Evolution and Personal Religious Belief: Christian University Biology-Related Majors' Search for Reconciliation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winslow, Mark W.; Staver, John R.; Scharmann, Lawrence C.

    2011-01-01

    The goal of this study was to explore Christian biology-related majors' perceptions of conflicts between evolution and their religious beliefs. This naturalistic study utilized a case study design of 15 undergraduate biology-related majors at or recent biology-related graduates from a mid-western Christian university. The broad sources of data…

  13. Biological stoichiometry in human cancer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James J Elser

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: A growing tumor in the body can be considered a complex ecological and evolutionary system. A new eco-evolutionary hypothesis (the "Growth Rate Hypothesis", GRH proposes that tumors have elevated phosphorus (P demands due to increased allocation to P-rich nucleic acids, especially ribosomal RNA, to meet the protein synthesis demands of accelerated proliferation. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We determined the elemental (C, N, P and nucleic acid contents of paired malignant and normal tissues from colon, lung, liver, or kidney for 121 patients. Consistent with the GRH, lung and colon tumors were significantly higher (by approximately two-fold in P content (fraction of dry weight and RNA content and lower in nitrogen (N:P ratio than paired normal tissue, and P in RNA contributed a significantly larger fraction of total biomass P in malignant relative to normal tissues. Furthermore, patient-specific differences for %P between malignant and normal tissues were positively correlated with such differences for %RNA, both for the overall data and within three of the four organ sites. However, significant differences in %P and %RNA between malignant and normal tissues were not seen in liver and kidney and, overall, RNA contributed only approximately 11% of total tissue P content. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Data for lung and colon tumors provide support for the GRH in human cancer. The two-fold amplification of P content in colon and lung tumors may set the stage for potential P-limitation of their proliferation, as such differences often do for rapidly growing biota in ecosystems. However, data for kidney and liver do not support the GRH. To account for these conflicting observations, we suggest that local environments in some organs select for neoplastic cells bearing mutations increasing cell division rate ("r-selected," as in colon and lung while conditions elsewhere may select for reduced mortality rate ("K-selected," as in liver and

  14. Statistical insights into major human muscular diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Shakti; Kim, Sung-Min; Wang, Yu; Dinasarapu, Ashok Reddy; Subramaniam, Shankar

    2014-07-15

    Muscular diseases lead to muscle fiber degeneration, impairment of mobility, and in some cases premature death. Many of these muscular diseases are largely idiopathic. The goal of this study was to identify biomarkers based on their functional role and possible mechanisms of pathogenesis, specific to individual muscular disease. We analyzed the muscle transcriptome from five major muscular diseases: acute quadriplegic myopathy (AQM), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), mitochondrial encephalomyopathy, lactic acidosis and stroke-like episodes (MELAS), dermatomyositis (DM) and polymyositis (PM) using pairwise statistical comparison to identify uniquely regulated genes in each muscular disease. The genome-wide information encoded in the transcriptome provided biomarkers and functional insights into dysregulation in each muscular disease. The analysis showed that the dysregulation of genes in forward membrane pathway, responsible for transmitting action potential from neural excitation, is unique to AQM, while the dysregulation of myofibril genes, determinant of the mechanical properties of muscle, is unique to ALS, dysregulation of ER protein processing, responsible for correct protein folding, is unique to DM, and upregulation of immune response genes is unique to PM. We have identified biomarkers specific to each muscular disease which can be used for diagnostic purposes.

  15. Biological Systems, Energy Sources, and Biology Teaching. Biology and Human Welfare.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tribe, Michael; Pritchard, Alan J.

    This five-chapter document (part of a series on biology and human welfare) focuses on biological systems as energy sources and on the teaching of this subject area. Chapter 1 discusses various topics related to energy and ecology, including biomass, photosynthesis and world energy balances, energy flow through ecosystems, and others. Chapter 2…

  16. The Relationships between Epistemic Beliefs in Biology and Approaches to Learning Biology among Biology-Major University Students in Taiwan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Yi-Chun; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the relationships between students' epistemic beliefs in biology and their approaches to learning biology. To this end, two instruments, the epistemic beliefs in biology and the approaches to learning biology surveys, were developed and administered to 520 university biology students, respectively. By and…

  17. Patenting humans: clones, chimeras, and biological artifacts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurlbut, William B

    2005-01-01

    The momentum of advances in biology is evident in the history of patents on life forms. As we proceed forward with greater understanding and technological control of developmental biology there will be many new and challenging dilemmas related to patenting of human parts and partial trajectories of human development. These dilemmas are already evident in the current conflict over the moral status of the early human embryo. In this essay, recent evidence from embryological studies is considered and the unbroken continuity of organismal development initiated at fertilization is asserted as clear and reasonable grounds for moral standing. Within this frame of analysis, it is proposed that through a technique of Altered Nuclear Transfer, non-organismal entities might be created from which embryonic stem cells could be morally procured. Criteria for patenting of such non-organismal entities are considered.

  18. Biological Inspiration in Human Centred Robotics

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

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

    2004-01-01

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

  19. The Biological Basis of Human Irrationality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, Albert

    If we define irrationality as thought, emotion, or behavior that leads to self-defeating consequences or that significantly interferes with the survival and happiness of the organism, we find that literally hundreds of major irrationalities exist in all societies and in virtually all humans in those societies. These irrationalities persist despite…

  20. Putting humanity back into the teaching of human biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donovan, Brian M

    2015-08-01

    In this paper, I draw upon debates about race in biology and philosophy as well as the concepts of ineliminable pluralism and psychological essentialism to outline the necessary subject matter knowledge that teachers should possess if they desire to: (i) increase student understanding of scientific research on genetic and behavioral variation in humans; and (ii) attenuate inegalitarian beliefs about race amongst students.

  1. Social justice and research using human biological material: A ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    commercial medical research that uses human biological material, such as blood samples or other ... and provide that a person from whose body human biological material is withdrawn for .... part of investigators and institutions. This could be ...

  2. Major trends in human parasitic diseases in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ting; He, Shenyi; Zhao, Hong; Zhao, Guanghui; Zhu, Xing-Quan

    2010-05-01

    Tremendous progress has been made in the control and prevention of human parasitic diseases in mainland China in the past 30 years because of China's Reform and Opening to the Outside Policies initiated in 1978. However, parasitic diseases remain a major human health problem, with significant morbidity and mortality as well as adverse socioeconomic consequences. Although soil-transmitted parasitic diseases are in the process of being gradually controlled, food-borne parasitic diseases and emerging parasitic diseases are becoming the focus of new campaigns for control and prevention. This article reviews major trends in human parasitic diseases in mainland China, with perspectives for control.

  3. Cloning humans? Biological, ethical, and social considerations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayala, Francisco J

    2015-07-21

    There are, in mankind, two kinds of heredity: biological and cultural. Cultural inheritance makes possible for humans what no other organism can accomplish: the cumulative transmission of experience from generation to generation. In turn, cultural inheritance leads to cultural evolution, the prevailing mode of human adaptation. For the last few millennia, humans have been adapting the environments to their genes more often than their genes to the environments. Nevertheless, natural selection persists in modern humans, both as differential mortality and as differential fertility, although its intensity may decrease in the future. More than 2,000 human diseases and abnormalities have a genetic causation. Health care and the increasing feasibility of genetic therapy will, although slowly, augment the future incidence of hereditary ailments. Germ-line gene therapy could halt this increase, but at present, it is not technically feasible. The proposal to enhance the human genetic endowment by genetic cloning of eminent individuals is not warranted. Genomes can be cloned; individuals cannot. In the future, therapeutic cloning will bring enhanced possibilities for organ transplantation, nerve cells and tissue healing, and other health benefits.

  4. Biological Science as an Audio-Tutorial System of Instruction for the Non-Science Major

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hacket, Dorothy; Holt Imy V.

    1973-01-01

    Describes an audiotutorial program in Biological Science offered to non-science majors at Western Michigan University and reports the results of an evaluative investigation relating to this program. (JR)

  5. Equivalency of general biology (for majors) across a state-system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regier, Kimberly Fayette

    General biology courses (for majors) are often transferred from one institution to another. These courses must prepare students for upper division courses in biology. A survey of U.S. college biology faculty was conducted and revealed that more 4-year faculty do not believe that all general biology courses are equivalent. An evaluation of course grades in two upper division biology courses at University of Colorado Denver (N = 2129) based upon course grades in general biology and the type of institution where general biology was taken (2-year school, 4-year, in-residence at UCD, AP credit, CLEP credit, or IB credit) was conducted. Students who transferred general biology credit received lower grades in upper division biology courses and withdrew from upper division biology courses more frequently. Syllabi from a small sample (N = 9) of general biology courses offered at Colorado 2- and 4-year schools show variation in course design. Only 30% of the courses had detailed learning objectives. Sample exams reveal a range in variation between 3-69% of questions requiring higher-order thinking according to Bloom's Taxonomy. Increasing communication between high school, 2-year and 4-year biology faculty is necessary if consistency is to be gained. Professional development for faculty to increase awareness about exam development, curriculum alignment, and curriculum mapping may reduce the disparities between the preparation of students in biology. Transfer student grade outcomes should be further investigated across the state.

  6. Physical biology of human brain development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia eBudday

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Neurodevelopment is a complex, dynamic process that involves a precisely orchestrated sequence of genetic, environmental, biochemical, and physical events. Developmental biology and genetics have shaped our understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms during neurodevelopment. Recent studies suggest that physical forces play a central role in translating these cellular mechanisms into the complex surface morphology of the human brain. However, the precise impact of neuronal differentiation, migration, and connection on the physical forces during cortical folding remains unknown. Here we review the cellular mechanisms of neurodevelopment with a view towards surface morphogenesis, pattern selection, and evolution of shape. We revisit cortical folding as the instability problem of constrained differential growth in a multi-layered system. To identify the contributing factors of differential growth, we map out the timeline of neurodevelopment in humans and highlight the cellular events associated with extreme radial and tangential expansion. We demonstrate how computational modeling of differential growth can bridge the scales-from phenomena on the cellular level towards form and function on the organ level-to make quantitative, personalized predictions. Physics-based models can quantify cortical stresses, identify critical folding conditions, rationalize pattern selection, and predict gyral wavelengths and gyrification indices. We illustrate that physical forces can explain cortical malformations as emergent properties of developmental disorders. Combining biology and physics holds promise to advance our understanding of human brain development and enable early diagnostics of cortical malformations with the ultimate goal to improve treatment of neurodevelopmental disorders including epilepsy, autism spectrum disorders, and schizophrenia.

  7. Physical biology of human brain development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budday, Silvia; Steinmann, Paul; Kuhl, Ellen

    2015-01-01

    Neurodevelopment is a complex, dynamic process that involves a precisely orchestrated sequence of genetic, environmental, biochemical, and physical events. Developmental biology and genetics have shaped our understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms during neurodevelopment. Recent studies suggest that physical forces play a central role in translating these cellular mechanisms into the complex surface morphology of the human brain. However, the precise impact of neuronal differentiation, migration, and connection on the physical forces during cortical folding remains unknown. Here we review the cellular mechanisms of neurodevelopment with a view toward surface morphogenesis, pattern selection, and evolution of shape. We revisit cortical folding as the instability problem of constrained differential growth in a multi-layered system. To identify the contributing factors of differential growth, we map out the timeline of neurodevelopment in humans and highlight the cellular events associated with extreme radial and tangential expansion. We demonstrate how computational modeling of differential growth can bridge the scales-from phenomena on the cellular level toward form and function on the organ level-to make quantitative, personalized predictions. Physics-based models can quantify cortical stresses, identify critical folding conditions, rationalize pattern selection, and predict gyral wavelengths and gyrification indices. We illustrate that physical forces can explain cortical malformations as emergent properties of developmental disorders. Combining biology and physics holds promise to advance our understanding of human brain development and enable early diagnostics of cortical malformations with the ultimate goal to improve treatment of neurodevelopmental disorders including epilepsy, autism spectrum disorders, and schizophrenia.

  8. Integrated Modular Teaching of Human Biology for Primary Care Practitioners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glasgow, Michael S.

    1977-01-01

    Describes the use of integrated modular teaching of the human biology component of the Health Associate Program at Johns Hopkins University, where the goal is to develop an understanding of the sciences as applied to primary care. Discussion covers the module sequence, the human biology faculty, goals of the human biology faculty, laboratory…

  9. Conceptions of Memorizing and Understanding in Learning, and Self-Efficacy Held by University Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Tzu-Chiang; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2015-01-01

    This study aims to explore Taiwanese university students' conceptions of learning biology as memorizing or as understanding, and their self-efficacy. To this end, two questionnaires were utilized to survey 293 Taiwanese university students with biology-related majors. A questionnaire for measuring students' conceptions of memorizing and…

  10. Conceptions of Memorizing and Understanding in Learning, and Self-Efficacy Held by University Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Tzu-Chiang; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2015-01-01

    This study aims to explore Taiwanese university students' conceptions of learning biology as memorizing or as understanding, and their self-efficacy. To this end, two questionnaires were utilized to survey 293 Taiwanese university students with biology-related majors. A questionnaire for measuring students' conceptions of memorizing and…

  11. The biology of human psychosexual differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gooren, Louis

    2006-11-01

    Most attempts to identify biological underpinnings of gender identity and sexual orientation in humans have investigated effects of sex steroids, so pivotal in the differentiation of the genitalia, showing strong parallels between animals and the human. The information on humans is derived from the so-called 'experiments of nature', clinical entities with a lesser-than-normal androgen exposure in XY subjects and a higher than normal androgen exposure in XX subjects. Prenatal androgenization appears to predispose to a male gender identity development, but apparently not decisively since 40-50% of 46,XY intersexed children with a history of prenatal androgen exposure do not develop a male gender identity. Obviously, male-to-female transsexuals, with a normal androgen exposure prenatally (there is no serious evidence to the contrary) develop a female gender identity, through unknown biological mechanisms apparently overriding the effects of prenatal androgens. The latest studies in 46, XX subjects exposed to prenatal androgens show that prenatal androgenization of 46,XX fetuses leads to marked masculinization of later gender-related behavior but does not lead to gender confusion/dysphoria. The example of female-to-male transsexuals, without evidence of prenatal androgen exposure, indicates that a male gender identity can develop without a significant androgen stimulus. So we are far away from any comprehensive understanding of hormonal imprinting on gender identity formation. Brain studies in homosexuals have not held up in replication studies or are in need of replication in transsexuals. Genetic studies and the fraternal birth order hypothesis provide indications of familial clustering of homosexuality but in many homosexuals these genetic patterns cannot be identified. The biological explanations advanced for the birth order hypothesis lack any experimental support.

  12. Proteins of human milk. I. Identification of major components

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anderson, N.G.; Powers, M.T.; Tollaksen, S.L.

    1982-04-01

    Traditionally, human milk proteins are identified largely by reference to bovine milk. Hence, to identify the major proteins in human milk, we subjected human and bovine milk, in parallel, to high-resolution two-dimensional electrophoresis. Isoelectric precipitation at pH 4.6 was our criterion for distinguishing whey proteins from those of the casein complex. The ..cap alpha..- and..beta..-caseins were identified on the basis of relative abundance, relative molecular mass, and relative isoelectric points. No protein disappeared from ISO-DALT patterns of human milk after rennin treatment, and no new protein comparable to bovine para K-casein appeared in the BASO-DALT patterns; this suggests that K-casein is absent from human milk. The proteins identified in human milk patterns include the ..cap alpha.. and ..beta.. casein families, lactalbumin, albumin, transferrin, IgA, and lactoferrin. Numerous additional proteins seen in patterns for human milk remain to be identified.

  13. The Human Genome Project: big science transforms biology and medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hood, Leroy; Rowen, Lee

    2013-01-01

    The Human Genome Project has transformed biology through its integrated big science approach to deciphering a reference human genome sequence along with the complete sequences of key model organisms. The project exemplifies the power, necessity and success of large, integrated, cross-disciplinary efforts - so-called 'big science' - directed towards complex major objectives. In this article, we discuss the ways in which this ambitious endeavor led to the development of novel technologies and analytical tools, and how it brought the expertise of engineers, computer scientists and mathematicians together with biologists. It established an open approach to data sharing and open-source software, thereby making the data resulting from the project accessible to all. The genome sequences of microbes, plants and animals have revolutionized many fields of science, including microbiology, virology, infectious disease and plant biology. Moreover, deeper knowledge of human sequence variation has begun to alter the practice of medicine. The Human Genome Project has inspired subsequent large-scale data acquisition initiatives such as the International HapMap Project, 1000 Genomes, and The Cancer Genome Atlas, as well as the recently announced Human Brain Project and the emerging Human Proteome Project.

  14. Human biological monitoring of occupational genotoxic exposures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Knudsen, Lisbeth E.; Sorsa, M

    1993-01-01

    ) occupational exposure limit value of styrene in ambient air. The consideration of ethical issues in human genetic monitoring is an important but often overlooked aspect. This includes the scientific and preventional relevance of performing a test on individuals, pre- and post study information of donors......Human biological monitoring is a valuable tool for exposure assessment in groups of persons occupationally exposed to genotoxic agents. If the monitoring activity covers genetic material the term genetic monitoring is used. The methods used for genetic monitoring are either substance specific, e...... for and the biomonitoring results should preferentially be linked with accurate ambient air monitoring. In persons occupationally exposed to styrene the endpoints of DNA-damage and DNA-repair in genetic monitoring are methods of choice in exposure situations above the current Danish (25 ppm) or Finnish (20 ppm...

  15. Why Humans Die: an Unsolved Biological Problem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azbel', Mark Ya.

    2004-03-01

    Mortality is an instrument of natural selection, thus its theories are evolutionary motivated. They imply its irreversibility and life history dependence. This is inconsistent with demographic and biodemographic data for evolutionary unprecedented well protected populations with abundant resources. A physical approach establishes a biologically unanticipated mechanism of their mortality. It is reversible, stepwise, rapidly switches from one mode to another, and yields an exact law for a dominant fraction of mortality whose heterogeneity in the population is within the specified limits. (Any population reduces to such restricted heterogeneity groups). The (properly scaled) law is universal, i.e. independent of genetics and conditions for species as remote as humans and flies. Its mortality may be eliminated. Until old age all other mechanisms contribute ˜10% of the total mortality, but thereafter they determine the ultimate lifespan. The universal law agrees with demographic and biodemographic data. It presents a new, biologically explicit, demographic approximation of the total mortality. It suggests a possibility of a rapid (within less than two years for humans) and significant decrease in mortality at any (but very old) age.

  16. Major genomic mitochondrial lineages delineate early human expansions

    OpenAIRE

    Flores Carlos; Larruga José M; González Ana M; Maca-Meyer Nicole; Cabrera Vicente M

    2001-01-01

    Abstract Background The phylogeographic distribution of human mitochondrial DNA variations allows a genetic approach to the study of modern Homo sapiens dispersals throughout the world from a female perspective. As a new contribution to this study we have phylogenetically analysed complete mitochondrial DNA(mtDNA) sequences from 42 human lineages, representing major clades with known geographic assignation. Results We show the relative relationships among the 42 lineages and present more accu...

  17. Principles of Security: Human, Cyber, and Biological

    CERN Document Server

    Stacey, Blake C

    2013-01-01

    Cybersecurity attacks are a major and increasing burden to economic and social systems globally. Here we analyze the principles of security in different domains and demonstrate an architectural flaw in current cybersecurity. Cybersecurity is inherently weak because it is missing the ability to defend the overall system instead of individual computers. The current architecture enables all nodes in the computer network to communicate transparently with one another, so security would require protecting every computer in the network from all possible attacks. In contrast, other systems depend on system-wide protections. In providing conventional security, police patrol neighborhoods and the military secures borders, rather than defending each individual household. Likewise, in biology, the immune system provides security against viruses and bacteria using primarily action at the skin, membranes, and blood, rather than requiring each cell to defend itself. We propose applying these same principles to address the c...

  18. The Mathematical Biology of Human Infections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin A. Nowak

    1999-12-01

    Full Text Available Humans are constant victims of infectious diseases. Biomedical research during this century has led to important insights into the molecular details of immune defense. Yet, many questions relating to disease require a quantitative understanding of the complex systems that arise from the nonlinear interactions between populations of immune cells and infectious agents. Exploration of such questions has lead to a newly emerging field of mathematical biology describing the spread of infectious agents both within and between infected individuals. This essay will discuss simple and complex models of evolution, and the propagation of virus and prion infections. Such models provide new perspectives for our understanding of infectious disease and provide guidelines for interpreting experimental observation; they also define what needs to be measured to improve understanding.

  19. Biological impact of human embryonic stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martín, Miguel; Menéndez, Pablo

    2012-01-01

    Research on human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and induced pluripotent (iPS) stem cells is currently a field of great potential in biomedicine. These cells represent a highly valuable tool for developmental biology studies, disease models, and drug screening and toxicity. The ultimate goal of hESCs and iPS cell research is the treatment of diseases or disorders for which there is currently no treatment or existing therapies are only partially effective. Despite the disproportionate short-term hopes generated, which are putting too much pressure on scientists, the international scientific community is making rapid progress in understanding hESCs and iPS cells. Nonetheless, great efforts have to be made to provide an answer to still quite basic questions concerning their biology. Moreover, translation to clinical applications in cell replacement therapy requires prior solution to ethical barriers. The recent development of iPS cells has provided a strong alternative to overcome ethical issues concerning hESCs. However, an in-depth characterization of their genetic and epigenetic features, as well as their differentiation potential still remains to be undertaken. This chapter will describe, precisely, what the critical issues are, where scientific and ethical barriers stand, and how we are to overcome them. Only then, we shall finally discover whether hESCs and iPS cells will allow building reproducible disease models, and whether they really are a safe tool, with great potential for regenerative medicine.

  20. Human mammary microenvironment better regulates the biology of human breast cancer in humanized mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Ming-Jie; Wang, Jue; Xu, Lu; Zha, Xiao-Ming; Zhao, Yi; Ling, Li-Jun; Wang, Shui

    2015-02-01

    During the past decades, many efforts have been made in mimicking the clinical progress of human cancer in mouse models. Previously, we developed a human breast tissue-derived (HB) mouse model. Theoretically, it may mimic the interactions between "species-specific" mammary microenvironment of human origin and human breast cancer cells. However, detailed evidences are absent. The present study (in vivo, cellular, and molecular experiments) was designed to explore the regulatory role of human mammary microenvironment in the progress of human breast cancer cells. Subcutaneous (SUB), mammary fat pad (MFP), and HB mouse models were developed for in vivo comparisons. Then, the orthotopic tumor masses from three different mouse models were collected for primary culture. Finally, the biology of primary cultured human breast cancer cells was compared by cellular and molecular experiments. Results of in vivo mouse models indicated that human breast cancer cells grew better in human mammary microenvironment. Cellular and molecular experiments confirmed that primary cultured human breast cancer cells from HB mouse model showed a better proliferative and anti-apoptotic biology than those from SUB to MFP mouse models. Meanwhile, primary cultured human breast cancer cells from HB mouse model also obtained the migratory and invasive biology for "species-specific" tissue metastasis to human tissues. Comprehensive analyses suggest that "species-specific" mammary microenvironment of human origin better regulates the biology of human breast cancer cells in our humanized mouse model of breast cancer, which is more consistent with the clinical progress of human breast cancer.

  1. Conceptions of Memorizing and Understanding in Learning, and Self-Efficacy Held by University Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Tzu-Chiang; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2015-02-01

    This study aims to explore Taiwanese university students' conceptions of learning biology as memorizing or as understanding, and their self-efficacy. To this end, two questionnaires were utilized to survey 293 Taiwanese university students with biology-related majors. A questionnaire for measuring students' conceptions of memorizing and understanding was validated through an exploratory factor analysis of participants' responses. As for the questionnaire regarding the students' biology learning self-efficacy (BLSE), an exploratory factor analysis revealed a total of four factors including higher-order cognitive skills (BLSE-HC), everyday application (BLSE-EA), science communication (BLSE-SC), and practical works (BLSE-PW). The results of the cluster analysis according to the participants' conceptions of learning biology indicated that students in the two major clusters either viewed learning biology as understanding or possessed mixed-conceptions of memorizing and understanding. The students in the third cluster mainly focused on memorizing in their learning while the students in the fourth cluster showed less agreement with both conceptions of memorizing and understanding. This study further revealed that the conception of learning as understanding was positively associated with the BLSE of university students with biology-related majors. However, the conception of learning as memorizing may foster students' BLSE only when such a notion co-exists with the conception of learning with understanding.

  2. Essential concepts and underlying theories from physics, chemistry, and mathematics for "biochemistry and molecular biology" majors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Ann; Provost, Joseph; Roecklein-Canfield, Jennifer A; Bell, Ellis

    2013-01-01

    Over the past two years, through an NSF RCN UBE grant, the ASBMB has held regional workshops for faculty members from around the country. The workshops have focused on developing lists of Core Principles or Foundational Concepts in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, a list of foundational skills, and foundational concepts from Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics that all Biochemistry or Molecular Biology majors must understand to complete their major coursework. The allied fields working group created a survey to validate foundational concepts from Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics identified from participant feedback at various workshops. One-hundred twenty participants responded to the survey and 68% of the respondents answered yes to the question: "We have identified the following as the core concepts and underlying theories from Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics that Biochemistry majors or Molecular Biology majors need to understand after they complete their major courses: 1) mechanical concepts from Physics, 2) energy and thermodynamic concepts from Physics, 3) critical concepts of structure from chemistry, 4) critical concepts of reactions from Chemistry, and 5) essential Mathematics. In your opinion, is the above list complete?" Respondents also delineated subcategories they felt should be included in these broad categories. From the results of the survey and this analysis the allied fields working group constructed a consensus list of allied fields concepts, which will help inform Biochemistry and Molecular Biology educators when considering the ASBMB recommended curriculum for Biochemistry or Molecular Biology majors and in the development of appropriate assessment tools to gauge student understanding of how these concepts relate to biochemistry and molecular biology.

  3. Using the Humanities to Teach Neuroscience to Non-majors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFarlane, Hewlet G; Richeimer, Joel

    2015-01-01

    We developed and offered a sequence of neuroscience courses geared toward changing the way non-science students interact with the sciences. Although we accepted students from all majors and at all class levels, our target population was first and second year students who were majoring in the fine arts or the humanities, or who had not yet declared a major. Our goal was to engage these students in science in general and neuroscience in particular by teaching science in a way that was accessible and relevant to their intellectual experiences. Our methodology was to teach scientific principles through the humanities by using course material that is at the intersection of the sciences and the humanities and by changing the classroom experience for both faculty and students. Examples of our course materials included the works of Oliver Sacks, V.S. Ramachandran, Martha Nussbaum, Virginia Woolf and Karl Popper, among others. To change the classroom experience we used a model of team-teaching, which required the simultaneous presence of two faculty members in the classroom for all classes. We changed the structure of the classroom experience from the traditional authority model to a model in which inquiry, debate, and intellectual responsibility were central. We wanted the students to have an appreciation of science not only as an endeavor guided by evidence and experimentation, but also a public discourse driven by creativity and controversy. The courses attracted a significant number of humanities and fine arts students, many of whom had already completed their basic science requirement.

  4. Human capital as the major financing in the welfare state

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Konstantiuk Nataliia

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Human capital is becoming one of the main types of capital in the global economy. But as any other capital it needs investments. The system of higher education, as well as health care and social security, represents the major investment in the development of human capital. The latter, in turn, is the basis of innovation and economic development of states, nations and intergovernmental alliances. Various research has shown that higher education greatly increases the person's and the country's income in general. Human capital produces new knowledge, which is the key for the future. As a result, the funding of the human capital development, for which the country is mostly responsible, becomes of strategic importance.

  5. Quantifying electron transfer reactions in biological systems: what interactions play the major role?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sjulstok, Emil; Olsen, Jógvan Magnus Haugaard; Solov'yov, Ilia A

    2015-12-22

    Various biological processes involve the conversion of energy into forms that are usable for chemical transformations and are quantum mechanical in nature. Such processes involve light absorption, excited electronic states formation, excitation energy transfer, electrons and protons tunnelling which for example occur in photosynthesis, cellular respiration, DNA repair, and possibly magnetic field sensing. Quantum biology uses computation to model biological interactions in light of quantum mechanical effects and has primarily developed over the past decade as a result of convergence between quantum physics and biology. In this paper we consider electron transfer in biological processes, from a theoretical view-point; namely in terms of quantum mechanical and semi-classical models. We systematically characterize the interactions between the moving electron and its biological environment to deduce the driving force for the electron transfer reaction and to establish those interactions that play the major role in propelling the electron. The suggested approach is seen as a general recipe to treat electron transfer events in biological systems computationally, and we utilize it to describe specifically the electron transfer reactions in Arabidopsis thaliana cryptochrome-a signaling photoreceptor protein that became attractive recently due to its possible function as a biological magnetoreceptor.

  6. Quantifying electron transfer reactions in biological systems: what interactions play the major role?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sjulstok, Emil; Olsen, Jógvan Magnus Haugaard; Solov'Yov, Ilia A.

    2015-12-01

    Various biological processes involve the conversion of energy into forms that are usable for chemical transformations and are quantum mechanical in nature. Such processes involve light absorption, excited electronic states formation, excitation energy transfer, electrons and protons tunnelling which for example occur in photosynthesis, cellular respiration, DNA repair, and possibly magnetic field sensing. Quantum biology uses computation to model biological interactions in light of quantum mechanical effects and has primarily developed over the past decade as a result of convergence between quantum physics and biology. In this paper we consider electron transfer in biological processes, from a theoretical view-point; namely in terms of quantum mechanical and semi-classical models. We systematically characterize the interactions between the moving electron and its biological environment to deduce the driving force for the electron transfer reaction and to establish those interactions that play the major role in propelling the electron. The suggested approach is seen as a general recipe to treat electron transfer events in biological systems computationally, and we utilize it to describe specifically the electron transfer reactions in Arabidopsis thaliana cryptochrome-a signaling photoreceptor protein that became attractive recently due to its possible function as a biological magnetoreceptor.

  7. Population Biology, Conservation Biology, and the Future of Humanity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehrlich, Paul R.

    1987-01-01

    Recounts some of the progress that has been made in the field of population biology. Presents some of the important advances made in the field, along with some of their applications to societal problems. Calls for more cooperation between population scientists and social scientists, and more environmental education for the public. (TW)

  8. Effect of Process-Oriented Guided-Inquiry Learning on Non-majors Biology Students' Understanding of Biological Classification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wozniak, Breann M.

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

  9. Attributions of Academic Performance among Third Year and Fourth Year Biology Major Students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nick John B. Solar

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available This is a descriptive study aimed to determine the attributions of academic performance of third year and fourth year biology major students in the College of Education, West Visayas State University, School Year 2013-2014. The academic performance were categorized or measured in terms of test, projects, workbooks, and laboratory experiments, class participation, and attendance. The Attributions in academic performance were evaluated using the closed-form questionnairechecklist,categorized intoin termsof ability, effort, luck, or task difficulty. Mean frequency, mean percentage, Mann-Whitney U-test, two-sampled test set at 0.05 level of significance were used to determine if there were significant difference in the attribution when the students were taken according to their year level. The result of the study revealed that the Third Year biology majors attributed their academic performance to effort which is shown to have the highest percentage attribution in overall rank. There was no significant difference in the attributions of academic performance for third year and fourth year biology major students in terms of test, while the result for projects, workbooks, and laboratory experiment and class participation and attendance categories,was found out to have a significant difference in the attribution for the third and fourth years biology Major students’ academic performances.

  10. Major Biological Processes in European Tidal Estuaries - a Synthesis of the Jeep-92 Project

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heip, C.H.R.; Herman, P.M.J.

    1995-01-01

    An overview is presented of the major results of the project JEEP-92 (Joint European Estuarine Project). A basic description was made of the ecological structure of the estuaries Elbe, Ems, Westerschelde, Somme, Gironde, Shannon and Tagus. The biological communities in these estuaries have been desc

  11. Putting Students on the Hot Seat to Stimulate Interest in Biology in Non-Science Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fowler, Samantha R.

    2012-01-01

    The Hot Seat is a discussion-based activity that requires students enrolled in a biology course for non-majors to pose a question to the class that is related to the current lecture topic and facilitate a brief class discussion. This paper describes the Hot Seat, how it is assessed, and how it has influenced students' attitudes toward the course…

  12. Human oocyte chromosome analysis: complicated cases and major pitfalls

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Bernd Rosenbusch; Michael Schneider; Hans Wilhelm Michelmann

    2008-08-01

    Human oocytes that remained unfertilized in programmes of assisted reproduction have been analysed cytogenetically for more than 20 years to assess the incidence of aneuploidy in female gametes. However, the results obtained so far are not indisputable as a consequence of difficulties in evaluating oocyte chromosome preparations. Because of the lack of guidelines, we decided to summarize for the first time, the possible pitfalls in human oocyte chromosome analysis. Therefore, we screened the material from our previous studies and compiled representative, complicated cases with recommendations for their cytogenetic classification. We point out that maturity and size of the oocyte are important parameters and that fixation artefacts, as well as the particular structure of oocyte chromosomes, may predispose one to misinterpretations. Moreover, phenomena related to oocyte activation and fertilization are illustrated and explained. This compilation may help to avoid major problems in future studies and contribute to a more precise, and uniform assessment of human oocyte chromosomes.

  13. Evolutionary Developmental Biology and Human Language Evolution: Constraints on Adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fitch, W Tecumseh

    2012-12-01

    A tension has long existed between those biologists who emphasize the importance of adaptation by natural selection and those who highlight the role of phylogenetic and developmental constraints on organismal form and function. This contrast has been particularly noticeable in recent debates concerning the evolution of human language. Darwin himself acknowledged the existence and importance of both of these, and a long line of biologists have followed him in seeing, in the concept of "descent with modification", a framework naturally able to incorporate both adaptation and constraint. Today, the integrated perspective of modern evolutionary developmental biology ("evo-devo") allows a more subtle and pluralistic approach to these traditional questions, and has provided several examples where the traditional notion of "constraint" can be cashed out in specific, mechanistic terms. This integrated viewpoint is particularly relevant to the evolution of the multiple mechanisms underlying human language, because of the short time available for novel aspects of these mechanisms to evolve and be optimized. Comparative data indicate that many cognitive aspects of human language predate humans, suggesting that pre-adaptation and exaptation have played important roles in language evolution. Thus, substantial components of what many linguists call "Universal Grammar" predate language itself. However, at least some of these older mechanisms have been combined in ways that generate true novelty. I suggest that we can insightfully exploit major steps forward in our understanding of evolution and development, to gain a richer understanding of the principles that underlie human language evolution.

  14. Using the Humanities to Teach Neuroscience to Non-majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFarlane, Hewlet G.; Richeimer, Joel

    2015-01-01

    We developed and offered a sequence of neuroscience courses geared toward changing the way non-science students interact with the sciences. Although we accepted students from all majors and at all class levels, our target population was first and second year students who were majoring in the fine arts or the humanities, or who had not yet declared a major. Our goal was to engage these students in science in general and neuroscience in particular by teaching science in a way that was accessible and relevant to their intellectual experiences. Our methodology was to teach scientific principles through the humanities by using course material that is at the intersection of the sciences and the humanities and by changing the classroom experience for both faculty and students. Examples of our course materials included the works of Oliver Sacks, V.S. Ramachandran, Martha Nussbaum, Virginia Woolf and Karl Popper, among others. To change the classroom experience we used a model of team-teaching, which required the simultaneous presence of two faculty members in the classroom for all classes. We changed the structure of the classroom experience from the traditional authority model to a model in which inquiry, debate, and intellectual responsibility were central. We wanted the students to have an appreciation of science not only as an endeavor guided by evidence and experimentation, but also a public discourse driven by creativity and controversy. The courses attracted a significant number of humanities and fine arts students, many of whom had already completed their basic science requirement. PMID:26240533

  15. A Unique Large-Scale Undergraduate Research Experience in Molecular Systems Biology for Non-Mathematics Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kappler, Ulrike; Rowland, Susan L.; Pedwell, Rhianna K.

    2017-01-01

    Systems biology is frequently taught with an emphasis on mathematical modeling approaches. This focus effectively excludes most biology, biochemistry, and molecular biology students, who are not mathematics majors. The mathematical focus can also present a misleading picture of systems biology, which is a multi-disciplinary pursuit requiring…

  16. Human biological monitoring of suspected endocrine-disrupting compounds

    OpenAIRE

    Moosa Faniband; Lindh, Christian H; Bo AG Jönsson

    2014-01-01

    Endocrine-disrupting compounds are exogenous agents that interfere with the natural hormones of the body. Human biological monitoring is a powerful method for monitoring exposure to endocrine disrupting compounds. In this review, we describe human biological monitoring systems for different groups of endocrine disrupting compounds, polychlorinated biphenyls, brominated flame retardants, phthalates, alkylphenols, pesticides, metals, perfluronated compounds, parabens, ultraviolet filters, and o...

  17. Major genomic mitochondrial lineages delineate early human expansions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flores Carlos

    2001-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The phylogeographic distribution of human mitochondrial DNA variations allows a genetic approach to the study of modern Homo sapiens dispersals throughout the world from a female perspective. As a new contribution to this study we have phylogenetically analysed complete mitochondrial DNA(mtDNA sequences from 42 human lineages, representing major clades with known geographic assignation. Results We show the relative relationships among the 42 lineages and present more accurate temporal calibrations than have been previously possible to give new perspectives as how modern humans spread in the Old World. Conclusions The first detectable expansion occurred around 59,000–69,000 years ago from Africa, independently colonizing western Asia and India and, following this southern route, swiftly reaching east Asia. Within Africa, this expansion did not replace but mixed with older lineages detectable today only in Africa. Around 39,000–52,000 years ago, the western Asian branch spread radially, bringing Caucasians to North Africa and Europe, also reaching India, and expanding to north and east Asia. More recent migrations have entangled but not completely erased these primitive footprints of modern human expansions.

  18. Reactive oxygen species and vascular biology: implications in human hypertension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Touyz, Rhian M; Briones, Ana M

    2011-01-01

    Increased vascular production of reactive oxygen species (ROS; termed oxidative stress) has been implicated in various chronic diseases, including hypertension. Oxidative stress is both a cause and a consequence of hypertension. Although oxidative injury may not be the sole etiology, it amplifies blood pressure elevation in the presence of other pro-hypertensive factors. Oxidative stress is a multisystem phenomenon in hypertension and involves the heart, kidneys, nervous system, vessels and possibly the immune system. Compelling experimental and clinical evidence indicates the importance of the vasculature in the pathophysiology of hypertension and as such much emphasis has been placed on the (patho)biology of ROS in the vascular system. A major source for cardiovascular, renal and neural ROS is a family of non-phagocytic nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH) oxidases (Nox), including the prototypic Nox2 homolog-based NADPH oxidase, as well as other Noxes, such as Nox1 and Nox4. Nox-derived ROS is important in regulating endothelial function and vascular tone. Oxidative stress is implicated in endothelial dysfunction, inflammation, hypertrophy, apoptosis, migration, fibrosis, angiogenesis and rarefaction, important processes involved in vascular remodeling in hypertension. Despite a plethora of data implicating oxidative stress as a causative factor in experimental hypertension, findings in human hypertension are less conclusive. This review highlights the importance of ROS in vascular biology and focuses on the potential role of oxidative stress in human hypertension.

  19. Quantitative mass spectrometry of unconventional human biological matrices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutkiewicz, Ewelina P.; Urban, Pawel L.

    2016-10-01

    The development of sensitive and versatile mass spectrometric methodology has fuelled interest in the analysis of metabolites and drugs in unconventional biological specimens. Here, we discuss the analysis of eight human matrices-hair, nail, breath, saliva, tears, meibum, nasal mucus and skin excretions (including sweat)-by mass spectrometry (MS). The use of such specimens brings a number of advantages, the most important being non-invasive sampling, the limited risk of adulteration and the ability to obtain information that complements blood and urine tests. The most often studied matrices are hair, breath and saliva. This review primarily focuses on endogenous (e.g. potential biomarkers, hormones) and exogenous (e.g. drugs, environmental contaminants) small molecules. The majority of analytical methods used chromatographic separation prior to MS; however, such a hyphenated methodology greatly limits analytical throughput. On the other hand, the mass spectrometric methods that exclude chromatographic separation are fast but suffer from matrix interferences. To enable development of quantitative assays for unconventional matrices, it is desirable to standardize the protocols for the analysis of each specimen and create appropriate certified reference materials. Overcoming these challenges will make analysis of unconventional human biological matrices more common in a clinical setting. This article is part of the themed issue 'Quantitative mass spectrometry'.

  20. Stem Cells: A Renaissance in Human Biology Research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Jun; Izpisua Belmonte, Juan Carlos

    2016-06-16

    The understanding of human biology and how it relates to that of other species represents an ancient quest. Limited access to human material, particularly during early development, has restricted researchers to only scratching the surface of this inherently challenging subject. Recent technological innovations, such as single cell "omics" and human stem cell derivation, have now greatly accelerated our ability to gain insights into uniquely human biology. The opportunities afforded to delve molecularly into scarce material and to model human embryogenesis and pathophysiological processes are leading to new insights of human development and are changing our understanding of disease and choice of therapy options.

  1. DNA methylation profiling of the human major histocompatibility complex: a pilot study for the human epigenome project.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vardhman K Rakyan

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available The Human Epigenome Project aims to identify, catalogue, and interpret genome-wide DNA methylation phenomena. Occurring naturally on cytosine bases at cytosine-guanine dinucleotides, DNA methylation is intimately involved in diverse biological processes and the aetiology of many diseases. Differentially methylated cytosines give rise to distinct profiles, thought to be specific for gene activity, tissue type, and disease state. The identification of such methylation variable positions will significantly improve our understanding of genome biology and our ability to diagnose disease. Here, we report the results of the pilot study for the Human Epigenome Project entailing the methylation analysis of the human major histocompatibility complex. This study involved the development of an integrated pipeline for high-throughput methylation analysis using bisulphite DNA sequencing, discovery of methylation variable positions, epigenotyping by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionisation mass spectrometry, and development of an integrated public database available at http://www.epigenome.org. Our analysis of DNA methylation levels within the major histocompatibility complex, including regulatory exonic and intronic regions associated with 90 genes in multiple tissues and individuals, reveals a bimodal distribution of methylation profiles (i.e., the vast majority of the analysed regions were either hypo- or hypermethylated, tissue specificity, inter-individual variation, and correlation with independent gene expression data.

  2. The traditional uses, chemical constituents and biological activities of Plantago major L. A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samuelsen, A B

    2000-07-01

    Plantago major L. leaves have been used as a wound healing remedy for centuries in almost all parts of the world and in the treatment of a number of diseases apart from wound healing. These include diseases related to the skin, respiratory organs, digestive organs, reproduction, the circulation, against cancer, for pain relief and against infections. P. major contains biologically active compounds such as polysaccharides, lipids, caffeic acid derivatives, flavonoids, iridoid glycosides and terpenoids. Alkaloids and some organic acids have also been detected. A range of biological activities has been found from plant extracts including wound healing activity, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antioxidant, weak antibiotic, immuno modulating and antiulcerogenic activity. Some of these effects may attribute to the use of this plant in folk medicine.

  3. Science Café Course: An Innovative Means of Improving Communication Skills of Undergraduate Biology Majors

    OpenAIRE

    Anna Goldina; Weeks, Ophelia I.

    2013-01-01

    To help bridge the increasing gap between scientists and the public, we developed an innovative two-semester course called Science Café. In this course, undergraduate biology majors learn to develop communication skills to be better able to explain science concepts and current developments in science to non-scientists. Students develop and host outreach events on various topics relevant to the community, thereby increasing interactions between budding scientists and the public. Such a Science...

  4. The biology of human sexuality: evolution, ecology and physiology

    OpenAIRE

    PW Bateman; NC Bennett

    2006-01-01

    Many evolutionary biologists argue that human sexual behaviour can be studied in exactly the same way as that of other species. Many sociologists argue that social influences effectively obscure, and are more important than, a reductionist biological approach to human sexual behaviour. Here,we authors attempt to provide a broad introduction to human sexual behaviour from a biological standpoint and to indicate where the ambiguous areas are. We outline the evolutionary selective pressures that...

  5. The Biological Big Bang model for the major transitions in evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koonin Eugene V

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Major transitions in biological evolution show the same pattern of sudden emergence of diverse forms at a new level of complexity. The relationships between major groups within an emergent new class of biological entities are hard to decipher and do not seem to fit the tree pattern that, following Darwin's original proposal, remains the dominant description of biological evolution. The cases in point include the origin of complex RNA molecules and protein folds; major groups of viruses; archaea and bacteria, and the principal lineages within each of these prokaryotic domains; eukaryotic supergroups; and animal phyla. In each of these pivotal nexuses in life's history, the principal "types" seem to appear rapidly and fully equipped with the signature features of the respective new level of biological organization. No intermediate "grades" or intermediate forms between different types are detectable. Usually, this pattern is attributed to cladogenesis compressed in time, combined with the inevitable erosion of the phylogenetic signal. Hypothesis I propose that most or all major evolutionary transitions that show the "explosive" pattern of emergence of new types of biological entities correspond to a boundary between two qualitatively distinct evolutionary phases. The first, inflationary phase is characterized by extremely rapid evolution driven by various processes of genetic information exchange, such as horizontal gene transfer, recombination, fusion, fission, and spread of mobile elements. These processes give rise to a vast diversity of forms from which the main classes of entities at the new level of complexity emerge independently, through a sampling process. In the second phase, evolution dramatically slows down, the respective process of genetic information exchange tapers off, and multiple lineages of the new type of entities emerge, each of them evolving in a tree-like fashion from that point on. This biphasic model

  6. The Biological Big Bang model for the major transitions in evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koonin, Eugene V

    2007-01-01

    Background Major transitions in biological evolution show the same pattern of sudden emergence of diverse forms at a new level of complexity. The relationships between major groups within an emergent new class of biological entities are hard to decipher and do not seem to fit the tree pattern that, following Darwin's original proposal, remains the dominant description of biological evolution. The cases in point include the origin of complex RNA molecules and protein folds; major groups of viruses; archaea and bacteria, and the principal lineages within each of these prokaryotic domains; eukaryotic supergroups; and animal phyla. In each of these pivotal nexuses in life's history, the principal "types" seem to appear rapidly and fully equipped with the signature features of the respective new level of biological organization. No intermediate "grades" or intermediate forms between different types are detectable. Usually, this pattern is attributed to cladogenesis compressed in time, combined with the inevitable erosion of the phylogenetic signal. Hypothesis I propose that most or all major evolutionary transitions that show the "explosive" pattern of emergence of new types of biological entities correspond to a boundary between two qualitatively distinct evolutionary phases. The first, inflationary phase is characterized by extremely rapid evolution driven by various processes of genetic information exchange, such as horizontal gene transfer, recombination, fusion, fission, and spread of mobile elements. These processes give rise to a vast diversity of forms from which the main classes of entities at the new level of complexity emerge independently, through a sampling process. In the second phase, evolution dramatically slows down, the respective process of genetic information exchange tapers off, and multiple lineages of the new type of entities emerge, each of them evolving in a tree-like fashion from that point on. This biphasic model of evolution incorporates the

  7. Major cost savings associated with biologic dose reduction in patients with inflammatory arthritis.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Murphy, C L

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to explore whether patients with Inflammatory Arthritis (IA) (Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA) or Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS)) would remain in remission following a reduction in biologic dosing frequency and to calculate the cost savings associated with dose reduction. This prospective non-blinded non-randomised study commenced in 2010. Patients with Inflammatory Arthritis being treated with a biologic agent were screened for disease activity. A cohort of those in remission according to standardized disease activity indices (DAS28 < 2.6, BASDAI < 4) was offered a reduction in dosing frequency of two commonly used biologic therapies (etanercept 50 mg once per fortnight instead of weekly, adalimumab 40 mg once per month instead of fortnightly). Patients were assessed for disease activity at 3, 6, 12, 18 and 24 months following reduction in dosing frequency. Cost saving was calculated. 79 patients with inflammatory arthritis in remission were recruited. 57% had rheumatoid arthritis (n = 45), 13% psoriatic arthritis (n = 10) and 30% ankylosing spondylitis (n = 24). 57% (n = 45) were taking etanercept and 43% (n = 34) adalimumab. The percentage of patients in remission at 24 months was 56% (n = 44). This resulted in an actual saving to the state of approximately 600,000 euro over two years. This study demonstrates the reduction in biologic dosing frequency is feasible in Inflammatory Arthritis. There was a considerable cost saving at two years. The potential for major cost savings in biologic usage should be pursued further.

  8. Integration of culture and biology in human development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mistry, Jayanthi

    2013-01-01

    The challenge of integrating biology and culture is addressed in this chapter by emphasizing human development as involving mutually constitutive, embodied, and epigenetic processes. Heuristically rich constructs extrapolated from cultural psychology and developmental science, such as embodiment, action, and activity, are presented as promising approaches to the integration of cultural and biology in human development. These theoretical notions are applied to frame the nascent field of cultural neuroscience as representing this integration of culture and biology. Current empirical research in cultural neuroscience is then synthesized to illustrate emerging trends in this body of literature that examine the integration of biology and culture.

  9. Using a popular science nonfiction book to introduce biomedical research ethics in a biology majors course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walton, Kristen L W

    2014-12-01

    Although bioethics is an important topic in modern society, it is not a required part of the curriculum for many biology degree programs in the United States. Students in our program are exposed to biologically relevant ethical issues informally in many classes, but we do not have a requirement for a separate bioethics course. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks is a recent nonfiction book that describes the life of the woman whose cervical cancer biopsy gave rise to the HeLa cell line, as well as discussing relevant medical, societal, and ethical issues surrounding human tissue use for research. Weekly reading assignments from the book with discussion questions and a final paper were used to engage students in learning about the ethics of human subjects and human tissues research. Students were surveyed for qualitative feedback on the usefulness of including this book as part of the course. This book has been a successful platform for increasing student knowledge and interest in ethics related to biomedical and biological research.

  10. Using a Popular Science Nonfiction Book to Introduce Biomedical Research Ethics in a Biology Majors Course

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristen L.W. Walton

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Although bioethics is an important topic in modern society, it is not a required part of the curriculum for many biology degree programs in the United States.  Students in our program are exposed to biologically relevant ethical issues informally in many classes, but we do not have a requirement for a separate bioethics course.  The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks is a recent nonfiction book that describes the life of the woman whose cervical cancer biopsy gave rise to the HeLa cell line, as well as discussing relevant medical, societal, and ethical issues surrounding human tissue use for research.  Weekly reading assignments from the book with discussion questions and a final paper were used to engage students in learning about the ethics of human subjects and human tissues research.  Students were surveyed for qualitative feedback on the usefulness of including this book as part of the course.  This book has been a successful platform for increasing student knowledge and interest in ethics related to biomedical and biological research.

  11. A microbial perspective of human developmental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charbonneau, Mark R; Blanton, Laura V; DiGiulio, Daniel B; Relman, David A; Lebrilla, Carlito B; Mills, David A; Gordon, Jeffrey I

    2016-07-07

    When most people think of human development, they tend to consider only human cells and organs. Yet there is another facet that involves human-associated microbial communities. A microbial perspective of human development provides opportunities to refine our definitions of healthy prenatal and postnatal growth and to develop innovative strategies for disease prevention and treatment. Given the dramatic changes in lifestyles and disease patterns that are occurring with globalization, we issue a call for the establishment of 'human microbial observatories' designed to examine microbial community development in birth cohorts representing populations with diverse anthropological characteristics, including those undergoing rapid change.

  12. Metagenomic Systems Biology of the Human Microbiome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bonde, Ida

    The human microbiome is an integrated part of the human body, outnumbering the human cells by approximately a factor 10. These microorganisms are very important for human health, hence knowledge about this, ”our other genome”, has been growing rapidly in recent years. This is manly due to the adv......The human microbiome is an integrated part of the human body, outnumbering the human cells by approximately a factor 10. These microorganisms are very important for human health, hence knowledge about this, ”our other genome”, has been growing rapidly in recent years. This is manly due...... in the system. Applying the CAG clustering method to data from the human gut microbiome, we identified dependency-associations between plasmids, phages and clone-specific gene sets to their bacterial host. Connections between CRISPR-elements and phages were also observed. Additionally, the persistence of some...... bacterial species in the human gut could be predicted based on absence or presence of specific genetic modules. Based on the same CAG clustering of the human gut microbiome data, the link between bile acid degradation of bacteria in the gut and obesity was investigated. There seemed to be a slight...

  13. Teacher's Study Guide on the Biology of Human Populations: Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, Paris (France).

    This teacher's guide is designed to give background information on current biological subjects not usually treated in student texts. The book is divided into five parts, each representing one of the following topics: (1) evolution of human populations; (2) environment of human populations; (3) dynamics of human populations; (4) reproduction in…

  14. Cultural Carrying Capacity: A Biological Approach to Human Problems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardin, Garrett

    1992-01-01

    In discussing the human and cultural implications of scientific discoveries and knowledge, the biological concept of carrying capacity is explored. Maintaining that human beings are truly animals answering to principles that govern all animals, the author addresses the need for human populations to work within the context of culture and carrying…

  15. Do Biology Students Really Hate Math? Empirical Insights into Undergraduate Life Science Majors' Emotions about Mathematics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wachsmuth, Lucas P; Runyon, Christopher R; Drake, John M; Dolan, Erin L

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate life science majors are reputed to have negative emotions toward mathematics, yet little empirical evidence supports this. We sought to compare emotions of majors in the life sciences versus other natural sciences and math. We adapted the Attitudes toward the Subject of Chemistry Inventory to create an Attitudes toward the Subject of Mathematics Inventory (ASMI). We collected data from 359 science and math majors at two research universities and conducted a series of statistical tests that indicated that four AMSI items comprised a reasonable measure of students' emotional satisfaction with math. We then compared life science and non-life science majors and found that major had a small to moderate relationship with students' responses. Gender also had a small relationship with students' responses, while students' race, ethnicity, and year in school had no observable relationship. Using latent profile analysis, we identified three groups-students who were emotionally satisfied with math, emotionally dissatisfied with math, and neutral. These results and the emotional satisfaction with math scale should be useful for identifying differences in other undergraduate populations, determining the malleability of undergraduates' emotional satisfaction with math, and testing effects of interventions aimed at improving life science majors' attitudes toward math. © 2017 L.P. Wachsmuth et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2017 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  16. Optimization of Substitution Matrix for Sequence Alignment of Major Capsid Proteins of Human Herpes Simplex Virus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vipan Kumar Sohpal

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Protein sequence alignment has become an informative tool in modern molecular biology research. A number of substitution matrices have been readily available for sequence alignments, but it is challenging task to compute optimal matrices for alignment accuracy. Here, we used the parameter optimization procedure to select the optimal Q of substitution matrices for major viral capsid protein of human herpes simplex virus. Results predict that Blosum matrix is most accurate on alignment benchmarks, and Blosum 60 provides the optimal Q in all substitution matrices. PAM 200 matrices results slightly below than Blosum 60, while VTML matrices are intermediate of PAM and VT matrices under dynamic programming.

  17. Closing the Loop: Involving Faculty in the Assessment of Scientific and Quantitative Reasoning Skills of Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurney, Carol A.; Brown, Justin; Griscom, Heather Peckham; Kancler, Erika; Wigtil, Clifton J.; Sundre, Donna

    2011-01-01

    The development of scientific and quantitative reasoning skills in undergraduates majoring in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) is an objective of many courses and curricula. The Biology Department at James Madison University (JMU) assesses these essential skills in graduating biology majors by using a multiple-choice exam…

  18. Human biological monitoring of suspected endocrine-disrupting compounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faniband, Moosa; Lindh, Christian H; Jönsson, Bo AG

    2014-01-01

    Endocrine-disrupting compounds are exogenous agents that interfere with the natural hormones of the body. Human biological monitoring is a powerful method for monitoring exposure to endocrine disrupting compounds. In this review, we describe human biological monitoring systems for different groups of endocrine disrupting compounds, polychlorinated biphenyls, brominated flame retardants, phthalates, alkylphenols, pesticides, metals, perfluronated compounds, parabens, ultraviolet filters, and organic solvents. The aspects discussed are origin to exposure, metabolism, matrices to analyse, analytical determination methods, determinants, and time trends. PMID:24369128

  19. Human biological monitoring of suspected endocrine-disrupting compounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faniband, Moosa; Lindh, Christian H; Jönsson, Bo A G

    2014-01-01

    Endocrine-disrupting compounds are exogenous agents that interfere with the natural hormones of the body. Human biological monitoring is a powerful method for monitoring exposure to endocrine disrupting compounds. In this review, we describe human biological monitoring systems for different groups of endocrine disrupting compounds, polychlorinated biphenyls, brominated flame retardants, phthalates, alkylphenols, pesticides, metals, perfluronated compounds, parabens, ultraviolet filters, and organic solvents. The aspects discussed are origin to exposure, metabolism, matrices to analyse, analytical determination methods, determinants, and time trends.

  20. Historical trends of the curricular design of the comprehensive discipline in Biology-geography major

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renier Mejías Salazar

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The paper describes one of the results of the research project “framework enlargement of adult continuing education in environmental education” at the University of Camagüey. A historical study was conducted to account for the trend in curricular design of the comprehensive discipline in Biology-geography major. The study takes into account emerging indicators resulting from the dialectical relation between education-development and personal development and framework construction. These methods lead to identify the trends afore mentioned as a contribution to the theory of curricular design.

  1. FOXO3 – A Major Gene for Human Longevity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Brian J.; Willcox, D. Craig; Donlon, Timothy A.; Willcox, Bradley J.

    2015-01-01

    Background The gene FOXO3, encoding the transcription factor forkhead box O-3 (FoxO3), is one of only two for which genetic polymorphisms have exhibited consistent associations with longevity in diverse human populations. Objective Here we review the multitude of actions of FoxO3 that are relevant to health, and thus healthy ageing and longevity. Methods Literature search for articles retrieved from PubMed using FoxO3 as keyword. Results We review the molecular genetics of FOXO3 in longevity, then current knowledge of FoxO3 function relevant to ageing and lifespan. We describe how FoxOs are involved in energy metabolism, oxidative stress, proteostasis, apoptosis, cell cycle regulation, metabolic processes, immunity, inflammation and stem cell maintenance. The single FoxO in Hydra confers immortality to this fresh water polyp, but as more complex organisms evolved this role has been usurped by the need for FoxO to control a broader range of specialized pathways across a wide spectrum of tissues assisted by the advent of as many as 4 FoxO subtypes in mammals. The major themes of FoxO3 are similar, but not identical, to other FoxOs and include regulation of cellular homeostasis, particularly of stem cells, and of inflammation, which is a common theme of age-related diseases. Other functions concern metabolism, cell cycle arrest, apoptosis, destruction of potentially damaging reactive oxygen species, and proteostasis. Conclusions The mechanism by which longevity-associated alleles of FOXO3 reduce age-related mortality is currently of great clinical interest. The prospect of optimizing FoxO3 activity in humans to increase lifespan and reduce age-related diseases represents an exciting avenue of clinical investigation. Research strategies directed at developing therapeutic agents that target FoxO3, its gene and proteins in the pathway(s) FoxO3 regulates should be encouraged and supported. PMID:25832544

  2. [Human angiogenin: expression, purification, biological assay].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, H; Zhang, Y Q; Yan, Z; Han, W; Yao, L B; Su, C Z

    2001-01-01

    Angiogenin cDNA was obtained by RT-PCR, and cloned into the fusion expression vector pRSETB. The recombinant Angiogenin protein was fused with His6 at its N-terminal and expressed as inclusion body. The expression level was about 10% of the total bacteria protein. After dissolved in 8 mol/L urea, the recombinant protein was purified by Ni2(+)-NTA chelating resin, according to the high affinity of His6 with Ni2+. The biological assay indicated that purified rhANG could induced the new blood vessel formation of CAM and degraded tRNA in vitro.

  3. Biology, Culture and Society: An Explanation of Human Development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandel, Barbara

    Traditional sociological conceptions of human group development and early human group behavior are critiqued in light of anthropological, biological, and physiological data. The objective of the study was to identify shortcomings of sociological research when non-sociological data is consistently ignored. Review of sociological studies of human…

  4. Leishmania major infection in humanized mice induces systemic infection and provokes a nonprotective human immune response.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anja Kathrin Wege

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Leishmania (L. species are the causative agent of leishmaniasis. Due to the lack of efficient vaccine candidates, drug therapies are the only option to deal with cutaneous leishmaniasis. Unfortunately, chemotherapeutic interventions show high toxicity in addition to an increased risk of dissemination of drug-resistant parasites. An appropriate laboratory animal based model is still missing which allows testing of new drug strategies in the context of human immune cells in vivo. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Humanized mice were infected subcutaneously with stationary phase promastigote L. major into the footpad. The human immune response against the pathogen and the parasite host interactions were analyzed. In addition we proved the versatility of this new model to conduct drug research studies by the inclusion of orally given Miltefosine. We show that inflammatory human macrophages get infected with Leishmania parasites at the site of infection. Furthermore, a Leishmania-specific human-derived T cell response is initiated. However, the human immune system is not able to prevent systemic infection. Thus, we treated the mice with Miltefosine to reduce the parasitic load. Notably, this chemotherapy resulted in a reduction of the parasite load in distinct organs. Comparable to some Miltefosine treated patients, humanized mice developed severe side effects, which are not detectable in the classical murine model of experimental leishmaniasis. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study describes for the first time L. major infection in humanized mice, characterizes the disease development, the induction of human adaptive and innate immune response including cytokine production and the efficiency of Miltefosine treatment in these animals. In summary, humanized mice might be beneficial for future preclinical chemotherapeutic studies in systemic (visceral leishmaniasis allowing the investigation of human immune response, side effects of the drug

  5. The Human Genome Project and Biology Education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McInerney, Joseph D.

    1996-01-01

    Highlights the importance of the Human Genome Project in educating the public about genetics. Discusses four challenges that science educators must address: teaching for conceptual understanding, the nature of science, the personal and social impact of science and technology, and the principles of technology. Contains 45 references. (JRH)

  6. The biological coherence of human phenome databases.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oti, M.O.; Huynen, M.A.; Brunner, H.G.

    2009-01-01

    Disease networks are increasingly explored as a complement to networks centered around interactions between genes and proteins. The quality of disease networks is heavily dependent on the amount and quality of phenotype information in phenotype databases of human genetic diseases. We explored which

  7. Synthetic Biology and Human Health: Potential Applications for Spaceflight

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karouia, Fathi; Carr, Christopher; Cai, Yizhi; Chen, Y.; Grenon, Marlene; Larios-Sanz, Maia; Jones, Jeffrey A.; Santos, Orlando

    2011-01-01

    Human space travelers experience a unique environment that affects homeostasis and physiologic adaptation. Spaceflight-related changes have been reported in the musculo-skeletal, cardiovascular, neurovestibular, endocrine, and immune systems. The spacecraft environment further subjects the traveler to noise and gravitational forces, as well as airborne chemical, microbiological contaminants, and radiation exposure. As humans prepare for longer duration missions effective countermeasures must be developed, verified, and implemented to ensure mission success. Over the past ten years, synthetic biology has opened new avenues for research and development in areas such as biological control, biomaterials, sustainable energy production, bioremediation, and biomedical therapies. The latter in particular is of great interest to the implementation of long-duration human spaceflight capabilities. This article discusses the effects of spaceflight on humans, and reviews current capabilities and potential needs associated with the health of the astronauts where synthetic biology could play an important role in the pursuit of space exploration.

  8. Molecular biology of human muscle disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dunne, P.W.; Epstein, H.F. (Baylor Coll. of Medicine, Houston, TX (United States))

    1991-01-01

    The molecular revolution that is transforming the entire biomedical field has had far-reaching impact in its application to inherited human muscle disease. The gene for Duchenne muscular dystrophy was one of the first cloned without knowledge of the defective protein product. This success was based upon the availability of key chromosomal aberrations that provided molecular landmarks for the disease locus. Subsequent discoveries regarding the mode of expression for this gene, the structure and localization of its protein product dystrophin, and molecular diagnosis of affected and carrier individuals constitute a paradigm for investigation of human genetics. Finding the gene for myotonic muscular dystrophy is requiring the brute force approach of cloning several million bases of DNA, identifying expressed sequences, and characterizing candidate genes. The gene that causes hypertrophic cardiomyopathy has been found serendipitously to be one of the genetic markers on chromosome 14, the {beta} myosin heavy chain.

  9. Practices and exploration on competition of molecular biological detection technology among students in food quality and safety major.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Yaning; Peng, Yuke; Li, Pengfei; Zhuang, Yingping

    2017-07-08

    With the increasing importance in the application of the molecular biological detection technology in the field of food safety, strengthening education in molecular biology experimental techniques is more necessary for the culture of the students in food quality and safety major. However, molecular biology experiments are not always in curricula of Food quality and safety Majors. This paper introduced a project "competition of molecular biological detection technology for food safety among undergraduate sophomore students in food quality and safety major", students participating in this project needed to learn the fundamental molecular biology experimental techniques such as the principles of molecular biology experiments and genome extraction, PCR and agarose gel electrophoresis analysis, and then design the experiments in groups to identify the meat species in pork and beef products using molecular biological methods. The students should complete the experimental report after basic experiments, write essays and make a presentation after the end of the designed experiments. This project aims to provide another way for food quality and safety majors to improve their knowledge of molecular biology, especially experimental technology, and enhances them to understand the scientific research activities as well as give them a chance to learn how to write a professional thesis. In addition, in line with the principle of an open laboratory, the project is also open to students in other majors in East China University of Science and Technology, in order to enhance students in other majors to understand the fields of molecular biology and food safety. © 2017 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 45(4):343-350, 2017. © 2017 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  10. Support for major hypotheses in invasion biology is uneven and declining

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan Jeschke

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Several major hypotheses have been proposed to explain and predict biological invasions, but the general applicability of these hypotheses is largely unknown, as most of them have not been evaluated using a standard approach across taxonomic groups and habitats. We offer such an evaluation for six selected leading hypotheses. Our global literature review reveals that those hypotheses that consider interactions of exotic invaders with their new environment (invasional meltdown, novel weapons, enemy release are better supported by empirical evidence than other hypotheses (biotic resistance, island susceptibility, tens rule. We also show that empirical support for the six hypotheses has declined over time, and that support differs among taxonomic groups and habitats. Our results have implications for basic and applied research, policy making, and invasive species management, as their effectiveness depends on sound hypotheses.

  11. The biology of human sexuality: evolution, ecology and physiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    PW Bateman

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available Many evolutionary biologists argue that human sexual behaviour can be studied in exactly the same way as that of other species. Many sociologists argue that social influences effectively obscure, and are more important than, a reductionist biological approach to human sexual behaviour. Here,we authors attempt to provide a broad introduction to human sexual behaviour from a biological standpoint and to indicate where the ambiguous areas are. We outline the evolutionary selective pressures that are likely to have influenced human behaviour and mate choice in the past and in the present; ecological features that influence such things as degree of parental care and polygamy; and the associated physiology of human sexuality. Then they end with a discussion of �abnormal� sexuality.

  12. Gene expression-based biological test for major depressive disorder: an advanced study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Watanabe S

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Shin-ya Watanabe,1 Shusuke Numata,1 Jun-ichi Iga,2 Makoto Kinoshita,1 Hidehiro Umehara,1 Kazuo Ishii,3 Tetsuro Ohmori1 1Department of Psychiatry, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, Tokushima, 2Department of Neuropsychiatry, Molecules and Function, Ehime University Graduate School of Medicine, Ehime, 3Department of Applied Biological Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, Tokyo, Japan Purpose: Recently, we could distinguished patients with major depressive disorder (MDD from nonpsychiatric controls with high accuracy using a panel of five gene expression markers (ARHGAP24, HDAC5, PDGFC, PRNP, and SLC6A4 in leukocyte. In the present study, we examined whether this biological test is able to discriminate patients with MDD from those without MDD, including those with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.Patients and methods: We measured messenger ribonucleic acid expression levels of the aforementioned five genes in peripheral leukocytes in 17 patients with schizophrenia and 36 patients with bipolar disorder using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR, and we combined these expression data with our previous expression data of 25 patients with MDD and 25 controls. Subsequently, a linear discriminant function was developed for use in discriminating between patients with MDD and without MDD.Results: This expression panel was able to segregate patients with MDD from those without MDD with a sensitivity and specificity of 64% and 67.9%, respectively.Conclusion: Further research to identify MDD-specific markers is needed to improve the performance of this biological test. Keywords: depressive disorder, biomarker, gene expression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder

  13. Gene expression-based biological test for major depressive disorder: an advanced study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watanabe, Shin-ya; Numata, Shusuke; Iga, Jun-ichi; Kinoshita, Makoto; Umehara, Hidehiro; Ishii, Kazuo; Ohmori, Tetsuro

    2017-01-01

    Purpose Recently, we could distinguished patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) from nonpsychiatric controls with high accuracy using a panel of five gene expression markers (ARHGAP24, HDAC5, PDGFC, PRNP, and SLC6A4) in leukocyte. In the present study, we examined whether this biological test is able to discriminate patients with MDD from those without MDD, including those with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Patients and methods We measured messenger ribonucleic acid expression levels of the aforementioned five genes in peripheral leukocytes in 17 patients with schizophrenia and 36 patients with bipolar disorder using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and we combined these expression data with our previous expression data of 25 patients with MDD and 25 controls. Subsequently, a linear discriminant function was developed for use in discriminating between patients with MDD and without MDD. Results This expression panel was able to segregate patients with MDD from those without MDD with a sensitivity and specificity of 64% and 67.9%, respectively. Conclusion Further research to identify MDD-specific markers is needed to improve the performance of this biological test. PMID:28260899

  14. Student anxiety in introductory biology classrooms: Perceptions about active learning and persistence in the major.

    Science.gov (United States)

    England, Benjamin J; Brigati, Jennifer R; Schussler, Elisabeth E

    2017-01-01

    Many researchers have called for implementation of active learning practices in undergraduate science classrooms as one method to increase retention and persistence in STEM, yet there has been little research on the potential increases in student anxiety that may accompany these practices. This is of concern because excessive anxiety can decrease student performance. Levels and sources of student anxiety in three introductory biology lecture classes were investigated via an online survey and student interviews. The survey (n = 327) data revealed that 16% of students had moderately high classroom anxiety, which differed among the three classes. All five active learning classroom practices that were investigated caused student anxiety, with students voluntarily answering a question or being called on to answer a question causing higher anxiety than working in groups, completing worksheets, or answering clicker questions. Interviews revealed that student anxiety seemed to align with communication apprehension, social anxiety, and test anxiety. Additionally, students with higher general anxiety were more likely to self-report lower course grade and the intention to leave the major. These data suggest that a subset of students in introductory biology experience anxiety in response to active learning, and its potential impacts should be investigated.

  15. Human biological monitoring of suspected endocrine-disrupting compounds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moosa Faniband

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Endocrine-disrupting compounds are exogenous agents that interfere with the natural hormones of the body. Human biological monitoring is a powerful method for monitoring exposure to endocrine disrupting compounds. In this review, we describe human biological monitoring systems for different groups of endocrine disrupting compounds, polychlorinated biphenyls, brominated flame retardants, phthalates, alkylphenols, pesticides, metals, perfluronated compounds, parabens, ultraviolet filters, and organic solvents. The aspects discussed are origin to exposure, metabolism, matrices to analyse, analytical determination methods, determinants, and time trends.

  16. Science Café Course: An Innovative Means of Improving Communication Skills of Undergraduate Biology Majors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Goldina

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available To help bridge the increasing gap between scientists and the public, we developed an innovative two-semester course, called Science Café. In this course undergraduate biology majors learn to develop communication skills to be better able to explain science concepts and current developments in science to non-scientists. Students develop and host outreach events on various topics relevant to the community, thereby increasing interactions between budding scientists and the public. Such a Science Cafe course emphasizes development of science communication skills early, at the undergraduate level and empowers students to use their science knowledge in every day interactions with the public to increase science literacy, get involved in the local community and engage the public in a dialogue on various pressing science issues. We believe that undergraduate science majors can be great ambassadors for science and are often overlooked since many aspire to go on to medical/veterinary/pharmacy schools. However, science communication skills are especially important for these types of students because when they become healthcare professionals, they will interact with the public as part of their everyday jobs and can thus be great representatives for the field.

  17. Science café course: an innovative means of improving communication skills of undergraduate biology majors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldina, Anna; Weeks, Ophelia I

    2014-05-01

    To help bridge the increasing gap between scientists and the public, we developed an innovative two-semester course called Science Café. In this course, undergraduate biology majors learn to develop communication skills to be better able to explain science concepts and current developments in science to non-scientists. Students develop and host outreach events on various topics relevant to the community, thereby increasing interactions between budding scientists and the public. Such a Science Café course emphasizes development of science communication skills early, at the undergraduate level, and empowers students to use their science knowledge in everyday interactions with the public to increase science literacy, get involved in the local community and engage the public in a dialogue on various pressing science issues. We believe that undergraduate science majors can be great ambassadors for science and are often overlooked since many aspire to go on to medical/veterinary/pharmacy schools. However, science communication skills are especially important for these types of students because when they become healthcare professionals, they will interact with the public as part of their everyday jobs and can thus be great representatives for the field.

  18. Expressive Writing: Enhancing the Emotional Intelligence of Human Services Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo, Yuleinys; Fischer, Jerome M.

    2017-01-01

    The skills and tasks in the human services field are highly connected to emotional intelligence abilities. The purpose of the study was to investigate the effect of an expressive writing program involving human service students in an undergraduate rehabilitation services course. The program was developed to enhance their emotional intelligence.…

  19. Electromagnetic field induced biological effects in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaszuba-Zwoińska, Jolanta; Gremba, Jerzy; Gałdzińska-Calik, Barbara; Wójcik-Piotrowicz, Karolina; Thor, Piotr J

    2015-01-01

    Exposure to artificial radio frequency electromagnetic fields (EMFs) has increased significantly in recent decades. Therefore, there is a growing scientific and social interest in its influence on health, even upon exposure significantly below the applicable standards. The intensity of electromagnetic radiation in human environment is increasing and currently reaches astronomical levels that had never before experienced on our planet. The most influential process of EMF impact on living organisms, is its direct tissue penetration. The current established standards of exposure to EMFs in Poland and in the rest of the world are based on the thermal effect. It is well known that weak EMF could cause all sorts of dramatic non-thermal effects in body cells, tissues and organs. The observed symptoms are hardly to assign to other environmental factors occurring simultaneously in the human environment. Although, there are still ongoing discussions on non-thermal effects of EMF influence, on May 31, 2011--International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC)--Agenda of World Health Organization (WHO) has classified radio electromagnetic fields, to a category 2B as potentially carcinogenic. Electromagnetic fields can be dangerous not only because of the risk of cancer, but also other health problems, including electromagnetic hypersensitivity (EHS). Electromagnetic hypersensitivity (EHS) is a phenomenon characterized by the appearance of symptoms after exposure of people to electromagnetic fields, generated by EHS is characterized as a syndrome with a broad spectrum of non-specific multiple organ symptoms including both acute and chronic inflammatory processes located mainly in the skin and nervous systems, as well as in respiratory, cardiovascular systems, and musculoskeletal system. WHO does not consider the EHS as a disease-- defined on the basis of medical diagnosis and symptoms associated with any known syndrome. The symptoms may be associated with a single source of EMF

  20. 37 CFR 1.775 - Calculation of patent term extension for a human drug, antibiotic drug or human biological product.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... extension for a human drug, antibiotic drug or human biological product. 1.775 Section 1.775 Patents... drug or human biological product is eligible for extension, the term shall be extended by the time as... term of the patent for a human drug, antibiotic drug or human biological product will be extended...

  1. Research Results Ultra-fast Energy Transfer from Monomer to Dimer within a Trimeric Molecule New Progress in Heterogeneous Catalysis Research Key Progress in Research on Terrestrial Carbon Cycle in China A New Progress in Research on the Mechanism of Bio-Invasion New Findings in Anti-viral infection and Control of Inflammation Major Headway in Avian Origin Research New Progress in Gold-Nanoparticle-Based Biochips Topological Insulator Research Made Important Progress Major Progress in Biodiversity Achieved New Developments of Direct Methods in Protein Crystallography Major Progress in China-UK Collaboration on the Causal Relationship between Volcanic Activity and Biological Distinction News in Brief: NSFC set up "Research Fund for Young Foreign Scholars" How Often Does Human DNA Mutate? Research Progress on Colossal Anisotropic Magneto Resistive Effect

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    Ultra-fast Energy Transfer from Monomer to Dimer within a Trimeric Molecule New Progress in Heterogeneous Catalysis Research Key Progress in Research on Terrestrial Carbon Cycle in China A New Progress in Research on the Mechanism of Bio-Invasion New Findings in Anti-viral infection and Control of Inflammation Major Headway in Avian Origin Research New Progress in Gold-Nanoparticle-Based Biochips Topological Insulator Research Made Important Progress Major Progress in Biodiversity Achieved New Developments of Direct Methods in Protein Crystallography Major Progress in China-UK Collaboration on the Causal Relationship between Volcanic Activity and Biological Distinction News in Brief: NSFC set up "Research Fund for Young Foreign Scholars" How Often Does Human DNA Mutate? Research Progress on Colossal Anisotropic Magneto Resistive Effect

  2. Human evolution, life history theory, and the end of biological reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Last, Cadell

    2014-01-01

    Throughout primate history there have been three major life history transitions towards increasingly delayed sexual maturation and biological reproduction, as well as towards extended life expectancy. Monkeys reproduce later and live longer than do prosimians, apes reproduce later and live longer than do monkeys, and humans reproduce later and live longer than do apes. These life history transitions are connected to increased encephalization. During the last life history transition from apes to humans, increased encephalization co-evolved with increased dependence on cultural knowledge for energy acquisition. This led to a dramatic pressure for more energy investment in growth over current biological reproduction. Since the industrial revolution socioeconomic development has led to even more energy being devoted to growth over current biological reproduction. I propose that this is the beginning of an ongoing fourth major primate life history transition towards completely delayed biological reproduction and an extension of the evolved human life expectancy. I argue that the only fundamental difference between this primate life history transition and previous life history transitions is that this transition is being driven solely by cultural evolution, which may suggest some deeper evolutionary transition away from biological evolution is already in the process of occurring.

  3. The DNA-damage response in human biology and disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jackson, Stephen P; Bartek, Jiri

    2009-01-01

    , signal its presence and mediate its repair. Such responses, which have an impact on a wide range of cellular events, are biologically significant because they prevent diverse human diseases. Our improving understanding of DNA-damage responses is providing new avenues for disease management....

  4. Human mesenchymal stromal cells : biological characterization and clinical application

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bernardo, Maria Ester

    2010-01-01

    This thesis focuses on the characterization of the biological and functional properties of human mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs), isolated from different tissue sources. The differentiation capacity of MSCs from fetal and adult tissues has been tested and compared. Umbilical cord blood (UCB) has be

  5. Applied Developmental Biology: Making Human Pancreatic Beta Cells for Diabetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melton, Douglas A

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the genes and signaling pathways that determine the differentiation and fate of a cell is a central goal of developmental biology. Using that information to gain mastery over the fates of cells presents new approaches to cell transplantation and drug discovery for human diseases including diabetes. © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Enhancing Biology Instruction with the Human Genome Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buxeda, Rosa J.; Moore-Russo, Deborah A.

    2003-01-01

    The Human Genome Project (HGP) is a recent scientific milestone that has received notable attention. This article shows how a biology course is using the HGP to enhance students' experiences by providing awareness of cutting edge research, with information on new emerging career options, and with opportunities to consider ethical questions raised…

  7. The Human Genome Project: Biology, Computers, and Privacy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cutter, Mary Ann G.; Drexler, Edward; Gottesman, Kay S.; Goulding, Philip G.; McCullough, Laurence B.; McInerney, Joseph D.; Micikas, Lynda B.; Mural, Richard J.; Murray, Jeffrey C.; Zola, John

    This module, for high school teachers, is the second of two modules about the Human Genome Project (HGP) produced by the Biological Sciences Curriculum Study (BSCS). The first section of this module provides background information for teachers about the structure and objectives of the HGP, aspects of the science and technology that underlie the…

  8. Teacher's Study Guide on the Biology of Human Populations: Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, Paris (France).

    Factual and conceptual information dealing with the biology of human populations is offered in this guide for secondary science teachers. Instructional approaches are reviewed and suggestions are offered for use of the problem method approach, the discussion technique, and the project option. Information is organized into an introduction and five…

  9. Human Metabolic Network: Reconstruction, Simulation, and Applications in Systems Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Ming; Chan, Christina

    2012-01-01

    Metabolism is crucial to cell growth and proliferation. Deficiency or alterations in metabolic functions are known to be involved in many human diseases. Therefore, understanding the human metabolic system is important for the study and treatment of complex diseases. Current reconstructions of the global human metabolic network provide a computational platform to integrate genome-scale information on metabolism. The platform enables a systematic study of the regulation and is applicable to a wide variety of cases, wherein one could rely on in silico perturbations to predict novel targets, interpret systemic effects, and identify alterations in the metabolic states to better understand the genotype-phenotype relationships. In this review, we describe the reconstruction of the human metabolic network, introduce the constraint based modeling approach to analyze metabolic networks, and discuss systems biology applications to study human physiology and pathology. We highlight the challenges and opportunities in network reconstruction and systems modeling of the human metabolic system. PMID:24957377

  10. Overexpression of the human major vault protein in gangliogliomas.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aronica, E; Gorter, J.A.; Vliet, van EA; Spliet, WG; Veelen, van CW; Rijen, van PC; Leenstra, S.; Ramkema, MD; Scheffer, G.L.; Scheper, R.J.; Sisodiya, SM; Troost, D.

    2003-01-01

    PURPOSE: Recent evidence has been obtained that the major vault protein (MVP) may play a role in multidrug resistance (MDR). We investigated the expression and cellular localization of MVP in gangliogliomas (GGs), which are increasingly recognized causes of chronic pharmacoresistant epilepsy. METHOD

  11. Glycosylation of the major human Pneumocystis carinii surface antigen

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lundgren, Bettina; Koch, C; Mathiesen, Lars Reinhardt;

    1993-01-01

    It has recently been shown that the major rat P. carinii surface antigen is important for initial host-organism attachment, possibly through binding to fibronectin, mannose-binding protein, or surfactant protein A. Since a carbohydrate/lectin interaction may be involved in adhesion, we undertook...

  12. Moral Disengagement in Business and Humanities Majors: An Exploratory Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cory, Suzanne N.; Hernandez, Abigail R.

    2014-01-01

    This study measures moral disengagement of undergraduate business and humanities students with a focus on differences in moral disengagement between genders. Students completed a survey that consisted of 32 statements and were asked to determine the degree to which they agreed with each, using a 7-point Likert scale. The questions measured moral…

  13. The human premotor cortex is 'mirror' only for biological actions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tai, Yen F; Scherfler, Christoph; Brooks, David J; Sawamoto, Nobukatsu; Castiello, Umberto

    2004-01-20

    Previous work has shown that both human adults and children attend to grasping actions performed by another person but not necessarily to those made by a mechanical device. According to recent neurophysiological data, the monkey premotor cortex contains "mirror" neurons that discharge both when the monkey performs specific manual grasping actions and when it observes another individual performing the same or similar actions. However, when a human model uses tools to perform grasping actions, the mirror neurons are not activated. A similar "mirror" system has been described in humans, but whether or not it is also tuned specifically to biological actions has never been tested. Here we show that when subjects observed manual grasping actions performed by a human model a significant neural response was elicited in the left premotor cortex. This activation was not evident for the observation of grasping actions performed by a robot model commanded by an experimenter. This result indicates for the first time that in humans the mirror system is biologically tuned. This system appears to be the neural substrate for biological preference during action coding.

  14. Biological metals and metal-targeting compounds in major neurodegenerative diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnham, Kevin J; Bush, Ashley I

    2014-10-01

    Multiple abnormalities occur in the homeostasis of essential endogenous brain biometals in age-related neurodegenerative disorders, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. As a result, metals both accumulate in microscopic proteinopathies, and can be deficient in cells or cellular compartments. Therefore, bulk measurement of metal content in brain tissue samples reveal only the "tip of the iceberg", with most of the important changes occurring on a microscopic and biochemical level. Each of the major proteins implicated in these disorders interacts with biological transition metals. Tau and the amyloid protein precursor have important roles in normal neuronal iron homeostasis. Changes in metal distribution, cellular deficiencies, or sequestration in proteinopathies all present abnormalities that can be corrected in animal models by small molecules. These biochemical targets are more complex than the simple excess of metals that are targeted by chelators. In this review we illustrate some of the richness in the science that has developed in the study of metals in neurodegeneration, and explore its novel pharmacology.

  15. Long-Term Conceptual Retrieval by College Biology Majors Following Model-Based Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dauer, Joseph T.; Long, Tammy M.

    2015-01-01

    One of the goals of college-level introductory biology is to establish a foundation of knowledge and skills that can be built upon throughout a biology curriculum. In a reformed introductory biology course, we used iterative model construction as a pedagogical tool to promote students' understanding about conceptual connections, particularly those…

  16. Genomics of Streptococcus salivarius, a major human commensal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delorme, Christine; Abraham, Anne-Laure; Renault, Pierre; Guédon, Eric

    2015-07-01

    The salivarius group of streptococci is of particular importance for humans. This group consists of three genetically similar species, Streptococcus salivarius, Streptococcus vestibularis and Streptococcus thermophilus. S. salivarius and S. vestibularis are commensal organisms that may occasionally cause opportunistic infections in humans, whereas S. thermophilus is a food bacterium widely used in dairy production. We developed Multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and comparative genomic analysis to confirm the clear separation of these three species. These analyses also identified a subgroup of four strains, with a core genome diverging by about 10%, in terms of its nucleotide sequence, from that of S. salivarius sensu stricto. S. thermophilus species displays a low level of nucleotide variability, due to its recent emergence with the development of agriculture. By contrast, nucleotide variability is high in the other two species of the salivarius group, reflecting their long-standing association with humans. The species of the salivarius group have genome sizes ranging from the smallest (∼ 1.7 Mb for S. thermophilus) to the largest (∼ 2.3 Mb for S. salivarius) among streptococci, reflecting genome reduction linked to a narrow, nutritionally rich environment for S. thermophilus, and natural, more competitive niches for the other two species. Analyses of genomic content have indicated that the core genes of S. salivarius account for about two thirds of the genome, indicating considerable variability of gene content and differences in potential adaptive features. Furthermore, we showed that the genome of this species is exceptionally rich in genes encoding surface factors, glycosyltransferases and response regulators. Evidence of widespread genetic exchanges was obtained, probably involving a natural competence system and the presence of diverse mobile elements. However, although the S. salivarius strains studied were isolated from several human body-related sites

  17. The perspectives of nonscience-major students on success in community college biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim-Rajab, Oriana Sharon

    With more than 36% of nonscience-major community college students unable to successfully complete their general life science courses, graduation and transfer rates to four-year universities are negatively affected. Many students also miss important opportunities to gain some level of science proficiency. In an effort to address the problem of poor science achievement, this research project determined which factors were most significantly related to student success in a community college biology course. It also aimed to understand the student perspectives on which modifications to the course would best help them in the pursuit of success. Drawing heavily on the educational psychology schools of thought on motivation and self-efficacy of science learning, this study surveyed and interviewed students on their perceptions of which factors were related to success in biology and the changes they believed were needed in the course structure to improve success. The data revealed that the primary factors related to student success are the students' study skills and their perceived levels of self-efficacy. The findings also uncovered the critical nature of the professor's role in influencing the success of the students. After assessing the needs of the community college population, meaningful and appropriate curriculum and pedagogical reforms could be created to improve student learning outcomes. This study offered recommendations for reforms that can be used by science practitioners to provide a more nurturing and inspiring environment for all students. These suggestions revolved around the role of the instructor in influencing the self-efficacy and study skills of students. Providing more opportunities for students to interact in class, testing more frequently, establishing peer assistance programs, managing better the course material, and making themselves more available to students were at the forefront of the list. Examples of the potential benefits of increasing

  18. The large universal Pantoea plasmid LPP-1 plays a major role in biological and ecological diversification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Maayer, Pieter; Chan, Wai-Yin; Blom, Jochen; Venter, Stephanus N; Duffy, Brion; Smits, Theo H M; Coutinho, Teresa A

    2012-11-15

    Pantoea spp. are frequently isolated from a wide range of ecological niches and have various biological roles, as plant epi- or endophytes, biocontrol agents, plant-growth promoters or as pathogens of both plant and animal hosts. This suggests that members of this genus have undergone extensive genotypic diversification. One means by which this occurs among bacteria is through the acquisition and maintenance of plasmids. Here, we have analyzed and compared the sequences of a large plasmid common to all sequenced Pantoea spp. The Large PantoeaPlasmids (LPP-1) of twenty strains encompassing seven different Pantoea species, including pathogens and endo-/epiphytes of a wide range of plant hosts as well as insect-associated strains, were compared. The LPP-1 plasmid sequences range in size from ~281 to 794 kb and carry between 238 and 750 protein coding sequences (CDS). A core set of 46 proteins, encompassing 2.2% of the total pan-plasmid (2,095 CDS), conserved among all LPP-1 plasmid sequences, includes those required for thiamine and pigment biosynthesis. Phylogenetic analysis reveals that these plasmids have arisen from an ancestral plasmid, which has undergone extensive diversification. Analysis of the proteins encoded on LPP-1 also showed that these plasmids contribute to a wide range of Pantoea phenotypes, including the transport and catabolism of various substrates, inorganic ion assimilation, resistance to antibiotics and heavy metals, colonization and persistence in the host and environment, pathogenesis and antibiosis. LPP-1 is universal to all Pantoea spp. whose genomes have been sequenced to date and is derived from an ancestral plasmid. LPP-1 encodes a large array of proteins that have played a major role in the adaptation of the different Pantoea spp. to their various ecological niches and their specialization as pathogens, biocontrol agents or benign saprophytes found in many diverse environments.

  19. The large universal Pantoea plasmid LPP-1 plays a major role in biological and ecological diversification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    De Maayer Pieter

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Pantoea spp. are frequently isolated from a wide range of ecological niches and have various biological roles, as plant epi- or endophytes, biocontrol agents, plant-growth promoters or as pathogens of both plant and animal hosts. This suggests that members of this genus have undergone extensive genotypic diversification. One means by which this occurs among bacteria is through the acquisition and maintenance of plasmids. Here, we have analyzed and compared the sequences of a large plasmid common to all sequenced Pantoea spp. Results and discussion The Large PantoeaPlasmids (LPP-1 of twenty strains encompassing seven different Pantoea species, including pathogens and endo-/epiphytes of a wide range of plant hosts as well as insect-associated strains, were compared. The LPP-1 plasmid sequences range in size from ~281 to 794 kb and carry between 238 and 750 protein coding sequences (CDS. A core set of 46 proteins, encompassing 2.2% of the total pan-plasmid (2,095 CDS, conserved among all LPP-1 plasmid sequences, includes those required for thiamine and pigment biosynthesis. Phylogenetic analysis reveals that these plasmids have arisen from an ancestral plasmid, which has undergone extensive diversification. Analysis of the proteins encoded on LPP-1 also showed that these plasmids contribute to a wide range of Pantoea phenotypes, including the transport and catabolism of various substrates, inorganic ion assimilation, resistance to antibiotics and heavy metals, colonization and persistence in the host and environment, pathogenesis and antibiosis. Conclusions LPP-1 is universal to all Pantoea spp. whose genomes have been sequenced to date and is derived from an ancestral plasmid. LPP-1 encodes a large array of proteins that have played a major role in the adaptation of the different Pantoea spp. to their various ecological niches and their specialization as pathogens, biocontrol agents or benign saprophytes found in many diverse

  20. Multiple changes in sialic acid biology during human evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varki, Ajit

    2009-04-01

    Humans are genetically very similar to "great apes", (chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas and orangutans), our closest evolutionary relatives. We have discovered multiple genetic and biochemical differences between humans and these other hominids, in relation to sialic acids and in Siglecs (Sia-recognizing Ig superfamily lectins). An inactivating mutation in the CMAH gene eliminated human expression of N-glycolylneuraminic acid (Neu5Gc) a major sialic acid in "great apes". Additional human-specific changes have been found, affecting at least 10 of the dietary sources, particularly red meat and milk products. As humans also have varying and sometime high levels of circulating anti-Neu5Gc antibodies, there are implications for biotechnology products, and for some human diseases associated with chronic inflammation.

  1. Putative melatonin receptors in a human biological clock

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reppert, S.M.; Weaver, D.R.; Rivkees, S.A.; Stopa, E.G.

    1988-10-07

    In vitro autoradiography with /sup 125/I-labeled melatonin was used to examine melatonin binding sites in human hypothalamus. Specific /sup 125/I-labeled melatonin binding was localized to the suprachiasmatic nuclei, the site of a putative biological clock, and was not apparent in other hypothalamic regions. Specific /sup 125/I-labeled melatonin binding was consistently found in the suprachiasmatic nuclei of hypothalami from adults and fetuses. Densitometric analysis of competition experiments with varying concentrations of melatonin showed monophasic competition curves, with comparable half-maximal inhibition values for the suprachiasmatic nuclei of adults (150 picomolar) and fetuses (110 picomolar). Micromolar concentrations of the melatonin agonist 6-chloromelatonin completely inhibited specific /sup 125/I-labeled melatonin binding, whereas the same concentrations of serotonin and norepinephrine caused only a partial reduction in specific binding. The results suggest that putative melatonin receptors are located in a human biological clock.

  2. Comparing biological motion perception in two distinct human societies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pierre Pica

    Full Text Available Cross cultural studies have played a pivotal role in elucidating the extent to which behavioral and mental characteristics depend on specific environmental influences. Surprisingly, little field research has been carried out on a fundamentally important perceptual ability, namely the perception of biological motion. In this report, we present details of studies carried out with the help of volunteers from the Mundurucu indigene, a group of people native to Amazonian territories in Brazil. We employed standard biological motion perception tasks inspired by over 30 years of laboratory research, in which observers attempt to decipher the walking direction of point-light (PL humans and animals. Do our effortless skills at perceiving biological activity from PL animations, as revealed in laboratory settings, generalize to people who have never before seen representational depictions of human and animal activity? The results of our studies provide a clear answer to this important, previously unanswered question. Mundurucu observers readily perceived the coherent, global shape depicted in PL walkers, and experienced the classic inversion effects that are typically found when such stimuli are turned upside down. In addition, their performance was in accord with important recent findings in the literature, in the abundant ease with which they extracted direction information from local motion invariants alone. We conclude that the effortless, veridical perception of PL biological motion is a spontaneous and universal perceptual ability, occurring both inside and outside traditional laboratory environments.

  3. Linking Microbiota to Human Diseases: A Systems Biology Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Hao; Tremaroli, Valentina; Bäckhed, Fredrik

    2015-12-01

    The human gut microbiota encompasses a densely populated ecosystem that provides essential functions for host development, immune maturation, and metabolism. Alterations to the gut microbiota have been observed in numerous diseases, including human metabolic diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes (T2D), and irritable bowel syndrome, and some animal experiments have suggested causality. However, few studies have validated causality in humans and the underlying mechanisms remain largely to be elucidated. We discuss how systems biology approaches combined with new experimental technologies may disentangle some of the mechanistic details in the complex interactions of diet, microbiota, and host metabolism and may provide testable hypotheses for advancing our current understanding of human-microbiota interaction.

  4. Human pluripotent stem cells: an emerging model in developmental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Zengrong; Huangfu, Danwei

    2013-02-01

    Developmental biology has long benefited from studies of classic model organisms. Recently, human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs), including human embryonic stem cells and human induced pluripotent stem cells, have emerged as a new model system that offers unique advantages for developmental studies. Here, we discuss how studies of hPSCs can complement classic approaches using model organisms, and how hPSCs can be used to recapitulate aspects of human embryonic development 'in a dish'. We also summarize some of the recently developed genetic tools that greatly facilitate the interrogation of gene function during hPSC differentiation. With the development of high-throughput screening technologies, hPSCs have the potential to revolutionize gene discovery in mammalian development.

  5. Chronologic versus Biologic Aging of the Human Choroid

    OpenAIRE

    Christian Albrecht May

    2013-01-01

    Several aspects of chronologic and biologic aging in the human choroid are reviewed from the literature. They often reveal methodological problems for age-dependent changes of the following parameters: choroidal thickness, choroidal pigmentation, choroidal vasculature and blood flow, and choroidal innervation. On reinterpreting some data of studies concerning Bruch’s membrane, changes observed at different age points seem more likely to be nonlinear. Concluding from the data presented so far,...

  6. Novelty, Stress, and Biological Roots in Human Market Behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexey Sarapultsev

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Although studies examining the biological roots of human behavior have been conducted since the seminal work Kahneman and Tversky, crises and panics have not disappeared. The frequent occurrence of various types of crises has led some economists to the conviction that financial markets occasionally praise irrational judgments and that market crashes cannot be avoided a priori (Sornette 2009; Smith 2004. From a biological point of view, human behaviors are essentially the same during crises accompanied by stock market crashes and during bubble growth when share prices exceed historic highs. During those periods, most market participants see something new for themselves, and this inevitably induces a stress response in them with accompanying changes in their endocrine profiles and motivations. The result is quantitative and qualitative changes in behavior (Zhukov 2007. An underestimation of the role of novelty as a stressor is the primary shortcoming of current approaches for market research. When developing a mathematical market model, it is necessary to account for the biologically determined diphasisms of human behavior in everyday low-stress conditions and in response to stressors. This is the only type of approach that will enable forecasts of market dynamics and investor behaviors under normal conditions as well as during bubbles and panics.

  7. Novelty, stress, and biological roots in human market behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarapultsev, Alexey; Sarapultsev, Petr

    2014-03-01

    Although studies examining the biological roots of human behavior have been conducted since the seminal work Kahneman and Tversky, crises and panics have not disappeared. The frequent occurrence of various types of crises has led some economists to the conviction that financial markets occasionally praise irrational judgments and that market crashes cannot be avoided a priori (Sornette 2009; Smith 2004). From a biological point of view, human behaviors are essentially the same during crises accompanied by stock market crashes and during bubble growth when share prices exceed historic highs. During those periods, most market participants see something new for themselves, and this inevitably induces a stress response in them with accompanying changes in their endocrine profiles and motivations. The result is quantitative and qualitative changes in behavior (Zhukov 2007). An underestimation of the role of novelty as a stressor is the primary shortcoming of current approaches for market research. When developing a mathematical market model, it is necessary to account for the biologically determined diphasisms of human behavior in everyday low-stress conditions and in response to stressors. This is the only type of approach that will enable forecasts of market dynamics and investor behaviors under normal conditions as well as during bubbles and panics.

  8. A unique large-scale undergraduate research experience in molecular systems biology for non-mathematics majors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kappler, Ulrike; Rowland, Susan L; Pedwell, Rhianna K

    2016-12-28

    Systems biology is frequently taught with an emphasis on mathematical modeling approaches. This focus effectively excludes most biology, biochemistry, and molecular biology students, who are not mathematics majors. The mathematical focus can also present a misleading picture of systems biology, which is a multi-disciplinary pursuit requiring collaboration between biochemists, bioinformaticians, and mathematicians. This article describes an authentic large-scale undergraduate research experience (ALURE) in systems biology that incorporates proteomics, bacterial genomics, and bioinformatics in the one exercise. This project is designed to engage students who have a basic grounding in protein chemistry and metabolism and no mathematical modeling skills. The pedagogy around the research experience is designed to help students attack complex datasets and use their emergent metabolic knowledge to make meaning from large amounts of raw data. On completing the ALURE, participants reported a significant increase in their confidence around analyzing large datasets, while the majority of the cohort reported good or great gains in a variety of skills including "analysing data for patterns" and "conducting database or internet searches." An environmental scan shows that this ALURE is the only undergraduate-level system-biology research project offered on a large-scale in Australia; this speaks to the perceived difficulty of implementing such an opportunity for students. We argue however, that based on the student feedback, allowing undergraduate students to complete a systems-biology project is both feasible and desirable, even if the students are not maths and computing majors. © 2016 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 2016.

  9. The influence of major rivers discharges on physical and biological state of the Baltic Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dudkowska, Aleksandra; Cieszyńska, Agata

    2017-04-01

    River discharges are one of very important factors affecting the marine ecosystem functioning. Land-originated inflows, carrying fresh, nutrient-rich water can be often defined as the factor responsible for creating new physical and biochemical conditions, which in turn can create more or less favorable medium for many marine organisms to run their biological cycles within. In some basins, the Baltic Sea including, land-originated water inflows are usually associated with the eutrophication and are the factors, which trigger this process. It is clear that not only because of the riverine discharges, the nutrients levels in the sea increase. To exemplify in the case of phosphorus, the nutrient concentration can be raised by 'internal re-loading', which is caused by phosphorus pools accumulated in the sediments of the sea bed being released back to the water under anoxic conditions. In the present study, we focused on the major Baltic rivers inflows and their impact on the environmental state of the basin. We have examined river discharges (expressed as volumetric inflow in m3 s-1) and the nutrient load (phosphorus, nitrogen) accompanied by these inflows. Data for our investigation were derived from EHype model (Swedish Meteorological Institute Server, http://hypeweb.smhi.se/europehype/time-series/). From the river discharge model data set spanned over 1981 - 2010, we have calculated long-term trends and the basic statistics: annual and monthly means, percentiles (10th, 50th, 90th). The trends were defined to be statistically significant at the confidence level of 95% (p related to tributaries changes in three-dimensional distribution of seawater physical properties on the basis of hydrodynamic model. Land-sea interface comprise an important link in the water body state analysis. This research comprises a discussion of river runoffs significance evaluation in the Baltic Sea area. This work has been funded by the National Centre of Science project (contract number

  10. State of laboratory manual instruction in California community college introductory (non-majors) biology laboratory instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Priest, Michelle

    College students must complete a life science course prior to graduation for a bachelor's degree. Generally, the course has lecture and laboratory components. It is in the laboratory where there are exceptional opportunities for exploration, challenge and application of the material learned. Optimally, this would utilize the best of inquiry based approaches. Most community colleges are using a home-grown or self written laboratory manual for the direction of work in the laboratory period. Little was known about the motivation, development and adaptation of use. It was also not known about the future of the laboratory manuals in light of the recent learning reform in California Community Colleges, Student Learning Outcomes. Extensive interviews were conducted with laboratory manual authors to determine the motivation, process of development, who was involved and learning framework used in the creation of the manuals. It was further asked of manual authors their ideas about the future of the manual, the development of staff and faculty and finally, the role Student Learning Outcomes would play in the manual. Science faculty currently teaching the non-majors biology laboratories for at least two semesters were surveyed on-line about actual practice of the manual, assessment, manual flexibility, faculty training and incorporation of Student Learning Outcomes. Finally, an evaluation of the laboratory manual was done using an established Laboratory Task Analysis Instrument. Laboratory manuals were evaluated on a variety of categories to determine the level of inquiry instruction done by students in the laboratory section. The results were that the development of homegrown laboratory manuals was done by community colleges in the Los Angeles and Orange Counties in an effort to minimize the cost of the manual to the students, to utilize all the exercises in a particular lab and to effectively utilize the materials already owned by the department. Further, schools wanted to

  11. Case studies of community college non-science majors: Effects of self-regulatory interventions on biology self-efficacy and biological literacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maurer, Matthew J.

    Science literacy has been at the heart of current reform efforts in science education. The focus on developing essential skills needed for individual ability to be literate in science has been at the forefront of most K--12 science curricula. Reform efforts have begun to stretch into the postsecondary arena as well, with an ever increasing dialogue regarding the need for attention to science literacy by college students, especially non-science majors. This study set out to investigate how the use of self-regulatory interventions (specifically, goal setting, concept mapping, and reflective writing) affected student biology self-efficacy and biological literacy. This study employed a qualitative research design, analyzing three case studies. Participants in the study received ten self-regulatory interventions as a set of portfolio assignments. Portfolio work was qualitatively analyzed and coded for self-efficacy, as well as evidence of biological literacy. A biology self-efficacy survey was administered pre- and post- to provide a means of self-efficacy data triangulation. Literacy data was supported via a biological literacy rubric, constructed specifically for this study. Results indicated that mastery experiences were the source of biology self-efficacy. Self-efficacy for specific tasks increased over time, and changes in self-efficacy were corroborated by the self-efficacy survey. Students were found to express biological literacy at nominal, functional, or conceptual levels depending on the specific task. This was supported by data from the biological literacy rubric scores. Final conclusions and implications for the study indicated the need for further research with more samples of students in similar and different contexts. Given the fact that the literature in this area is sparse, the results obtained here have only begun to delve into this area of research. Generalization to other biology courses or contexts outside of the one presented in this study was

  12. Decellularized Human Skeletal Muscle as Biologic Scaffold for Reconstructive Surgery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Porzionato

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Engineered skeletal muscle tissues have been proposed as potential solutions for volumetric muscle losses, and biologic scaffolds have been obtained by decellularization of animal skeletal muscles. The aim of the present work was to analyse the characteristics of a biologic scaffold obtained by decellularization of human skeletal muscles (also through comparison with rats and rabbits and to evaluate its integration capability in a rabbit model with an abdominal wall defect. Rat, rabbit and human muscle samples were alternatively decellularized with two protocols: n.1, involving sodium deoxycholate and DNase I; n.2, trypsin-EDTA and Triton X-NH4OH. Protocol 2 proved more effective, removing all cellular material and maintaining the three-dimensional networks of collagen and elastic fibers. Ultrastructural analyses with transmission and scanning electron microscopy confirmed the preservation of collagen, elastic fibres, glycosaminoglycans and proteoglycans. Implantation of human scaffolds in rabbits gave good results in terms of integration, although recellularization by muscle cells was not completely achieved. In conclusion, human skeletal muscles may be effectively decellularized to obtain scaffolds preserving the architecture of the extracellular matrix and showing mechanical properties suitable for implantation/integration. Further analyses will be necessary to verify the suitability of these scaffolds for in vitro recolonization by autologous cells before in vivo implantation.

  13. The large universal Pantoea plasmid LPP-1 plays a major role in biological and ecological diversification

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    De Maayer, Pieter; Chan, Wai-Yin; Blom, Jochen; Venter, Stephanus N; Duffy, Brion; Smits, Theo H M; Coutinho, Teresa A

    2012-01-01

    Pantoea spp. are frequently isolated from a wide range of ecological niches and have various biological roles, as plant epi- or endophytes, biocontrol agents, plant-growth promoters or as pathogens of both plant and animal hosts...

  14. Contributions of A. Roberto Frisancho to human population biology: an introduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonard, William R

    2009-01-01

    Over the span of his career, A. Roberto Frisancho has been one of the prime architects of the development and expansion of human population biology. His research and scholarly publications have helped to move the field beyond simple descriptions of human variation to address the nature and evolutionary origins of human biological diversity. Frisancho's early work in the Peruvian Andes elegantly demonstrated the importance of developmental acclimatization for promoting adaptive responses to the multiple stressors of high-altitude environments. Since mid-1970s, he has played a major role in developing and expanding the use of anthropometric techniques for assessing physical growth and nutritional status. Frisancho's influential publications have helped to make the use of anthropometric methods commonplace in the fields of nutritional science and public health. Throughout his career, Frisancho's work has examined how environmental, genetic, and developmental factors interact to influence human health and nutritional status. His research has addressed topics ranging from the determinants of low-birth weight infants in teenage mothers to the origins of obesity and associated metabolic diseases in populations of the developing world. Both the breadth and impact of Frisancho's work have been truly remarkable. The field of human population biology owes much to the tremendous contributions of A. Roberto Frisancho.

  15. Human serum antibodies to a major defined epitope of human herpesvirus 8 small viral capsid antigen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tedeschi, R; De Paoli, P; Schulz, T F; Dillner, J

    1999-04-01

    The major antibody-reactive epitope of the small viral capsid antigen (sVCA) of human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8) was defined by use of overlapping peptides. Strong IgG reactivity was found among approximately 50% of 44 human immunodeficiency virus-positive or -negative patients with Kaposi's sarcoma and 13 subjects who were seropositive by immunofluorescence assay (IFA) for the latent HHV-8 nuclear antigen. Only 1 of 106 subjects seronegative for both lytic and latent HHV-8 antigens and 10 of 81 subjects IFA-seropositive only for the lytic HHV-8 antigen had strong IgG reactivity to this epitope. Among 534 healthy Swedish women, only 1.3% were strongly seropositive. Comparison of the peptide-based and purified sVCA protein-based ELISAs found 55% sensitivity and 98% specificity. However, only 1 of 452 serum samples from healthy women was positive in both tests. In conclusion, the defined sVCA epitope was a specific, but not very sensitive, serologic marker of active HHV-8 infection. Such infection appears to be rare among Swedish women, even with sexual risk-taking behavior.

  16. HPD: an online integrated human pathway database enabling systems biology studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowbina, Sudhir R; Wu, Xiaogang; Zhang, Fan; Li, Peter M; Pandey, Ragini; Kasamsetty, Harini N; Chen, Jake Y

    2009-10-08

    Pathway-oriented experimental and computational studies have led to a significant accumulation of biological knowledge concerning three major types of biological pathway events: molecular signaling events, gene regulation events, and metabolic reaction events. A pathway consists of a series of molecular pathway events that link molecular entities such as proteins, genes, and metabolites. There are approximately 300 biological pathway resources as of April 2009 according to the Pathguide database; however, these pathway databases generally have poor coverage or poor quality, and are difficult to integrate, due to syntactic-level and semantic-level data incompatibilities. We developed the Human Pathway Database (HPD) by integrating heterogeneous human pathway data that are either curated at the NCI Pathway Interaction Database (PID), Reactome, BioCarta, KEGG or indexed from the Protein Lounge Web sites. Integration of pathway data at syntactic, semantic, and schematic levels was based on a unified pathway data model and data warehousing-based integration techniques. HPD provides a comprehensive online view that connects human proteins, genes, RNA transcripts, enzymes, signaling events, metabolic reaction events, and gene regulatory events. At the time of this writing HPD includes 999 human pathways and more than 59,341 human molecular entities. The HPD software provides both a user-friendly Web interface for online use and a robust relational database backend for advanced pathway querying. This pathway tool enables users to 1) search for human pathways from different resources by simply entering genes/proteins involved in pathways or words appearing in pathway names, 2) analyze pathway-protein association, 3) study pathway-pathway similarity, and 4) build integrated pathway networks. We demonstrated the usage and characteristics of the new HPD through three breast cancer case studies. HPD http://bio.informatics.iupui.edu/HPD is a new resource for searching, managing

  17. Aggression in humans: what is its biological foundation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albert, D J; Walsh, M L; Jonik, R H

    1993-01-01

    Although human aggression is frequently inferred to parallel aggression based on testosterone in nonprimate mammals, there is little concrete support for this position. High- and low-aggression individuals do not consistently differ in serum testosterone. Aggression does not change at puberty when testosterone levels increase. Aggression does not increase in hypogonadal males (or females) when exogenous testosterone is administered to support sexual activity. Similarly, there are no reports that aggression increases in hirsute females even though testosterone levels may rise to 200% above normal. Conversely, castration or antiandrogen administration to human males is not associated with a consistent decrease in aggression. Finally, changes in human aggression associated with neuropathology are not consistent with current knowledge of the neural basis of testosterone-dependent aggression. In contrast, human aggression does have a substantial number of features in common with defensive aggression seen in nonprimate mammals. It is present at all age levels, is displayed by both males and females, is directed at both males and females, and is not dependent on seasonal changes in hormone levels or experiential events such as sexual activity. As would be expected from current knowledge of the neural system controlling defensive aggression, aggression in humans increases with tumors in the medial hypothalamus and septal region, and with seizure activity in the amygdala. It decreases with lesions in the amygdala. The inference that human aggression has its roots in the defensive aggression of nonprimate mammals is in general agreement with evidence on the consistency of human aggressiveness over age, with similarities in male and female aggressiveness in laboratory studies, and with observations that some neurological disturbances contribute to criminal violence. This evidence suggests that human aggression has its biological roots in the defensive aggression of nonprimate

  18. Biological characteristics of cell lines of human dental alveolus

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陈世璋; 黄靖香; 孙明学; 赵斌

    2003-01-01

    Objective To investigate the biological characteristics of cell lines of healthy and diseased human dental alveoli. Methods Primary cell lines from either healthy or diseased human dental alveoli were obtained. Two cell lines, H-258 and H-171 derived from healthy and diseased human tissues respectively, were selected for morphological study and research on their growth and aging, using cell counting, and histochemical and immunohistochemical staining. Results Primary cell lines were successfully established from innormal dental alveoli. After freezing and thawing for three times, cell growth was continued and no morphological alterations were observed. The doubling time was 53.4 hours and mean division index (MDI) was 4‰. Cells were kept normal after twenty generations with no obvious reduction of doubling time and MDI. Of twenty-six primary cell lines derived from healthy human dental alveoli, only three cell lines achieved generation. After freezing and thawing for twice, cultured cells were still alive at a decreased growth speed, with doubling time of 85.9 hours and MDI of 3‰. Both cell lines, H-171 and H-258, shared the characteristics of osteoblast. Conclusions Primary cell lines of diseased human dental alveoli show greater growth potential. All cell lines of dental alveoli share characteristics of osteoblast. The technique we developed may be put into practice for the treatment of abnormal dental alveoli.

  19. BIOLOGY OF HUMAN MALARIA PLASMODIA INCLUDING PLASMODIUM KNOWLESI

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spinello Antinori

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Malaria is a vector-borne infection caused by unicellular parasite of the genus Plasmodium. Plasmodia are obligate intracellular parasites that in humans after a clinically silent replication phase in the liver are able to infect and replicate within the erythrocytes. Four species (P.falciparum, P.malariae, P.ovale and P.vivax are traditionally recognized as responsible of natural infection in human beings but the recent upsurge of P.knowlesi malaria in South-East Asia has led clinicians to consider it as the fifth human malaria parasite. Recent studies in wild-living apes in Africa have revealed that P.falciparum, the most deadly form of human malaria, is not only human-host restricted as previously believed and its phylogenetic lineage is much more complex with new species identified in gorilla, bonobo and chimpanzee. Although less impressive, new data on biology of P.malariae, P.ovale and P.vivax are also emerging and will be briefly discussed in this review.

  20. Biological differences that distinguish the two major stages of wound healing in potato tubers

    Science.gov (United States)

    The two stages of wound healing have critical biological differences. The first stage, closing layer formation (CLF), involves early induction of DNA synthesis and nuclear division in the absence of cell division. The transition phase from CLF to the second stage is marked by a transient decrease in...

  1. Essential Concepts and Underlying Theories from Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics for "Biochemistry and Molecular Biology" Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Ann; Provost, Joseph; Roecklein-Canfield, Jennifer A.; Bell, Ellis

    2013-01-01

    Over the past two years, through an NSF RCN UBE grant, the ASBMB has held regional workshops for faculty members from around the country. The workshops have focused on developing lists of Core Principles or Foundational Concepts in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, a list of foundational skills, and foundational concepts from Physics, Chemistry,…

  2. Foundational Concepts and Underlying Theories for Majors in "Biochemistry and Molecular Biology"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tansey, John T.; Baird, Teaster, Jr.; Cox, Michael M.; Fox, Kristin M.; Knight, Jennifer; Sears, Duane; Bell, Ellis

    2013-01-01

    Over the past two years, through an NSF RCN UBE grant, the ASBMB has held regional workshops for faculty members and science educators from around the country that focused on identifying: 1) core principles of biochemistry and molecular biology, 2) essential concepts and underlying theories from physics, chemistry, and mathematics, and 3)…

  3. Biology and relevance of human acute myeloid leukemia stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Daniel; Majeti, Ravindra

    2017-03-23

    Evidence of human acute myeloid leukemia stem cells (AML LSCs) was first reported nearly 2 decades ago through the identification of rare subpopulations of engrafting cells in xenotransplantation assays. These AML LSCs were shown to reside at the apex of a cellular hierarchy that initiates and maintains the disease, exhibiting properties of self-renewal, cell cycle quiescence, and chemoresistance. This cancer stem cell model offers an explanation for chemotherapy resistance and disease relapse and implies that approaches to treatment must eradicate LSCs for cure. More recently, a number of studies have both refined and expanded our understanding of LSCs and intrapatient heterogeneity in AML using improved xenotransplant models, genome-scale analyses, and experimental manipulation of primary patient cells. Here, we review these studies with a focus on the immunophenotype, biological properties, epigenetics, genetics, and clinical associations of human AML LSCs and discuss critical questions that need to be addressed in future research. © 2017 by The American Society of Hematology.

  4. Efficient expression and purification of biologically active human cystatin proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chauhan, Sakshi; Tomar, Raghuvir S

    2016-02-01

    Cystatins are reversible cysteine protease inhibitor proteins. They are known to play important roles in controlling cathepsins, neurodegenerative disease, and in immune system regulation. Production of recombinant cystatin proteins is important for biochemical and function characterization. In this study, we cloned and expressed human stefin A, stefin B and cystatin C in Escherichia coli. Human stefin A, stefin B and cystatin C were purified from soluble fraction. For cystatin C, we used various chaperone plasmids to make cystatin C soluble, as it is reported to localize in inclusion bodies. Trigger factor, GroES-GroEL, DnaK-DnaJ-GrpE chaperones lead to the presence of cystatin C in the soluble fraction. Immobilized metal affinity chromatography, glutathione sepharose and anion exchange chromatography techniques were employed for efficient purification of these proteins. Their biological activities were tested by inhibition assays against cathepsin L and H3 protease.

  5. Modelling the regulation of thermal adaptation in Candida albicans, a major fungal pathogen of humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leach, Michelle D; Tyc, Katarzyna M; Brown, Alistair J P; Klipp, Edda

    2012-01-01

    Eukaryotic cells have evolved mechanisms to sense and adapt to dynamic environmental changes. Adaptation to thermal insults, in particular, is essential for their survival. The major fungal pathogen of humans, Candida albicans, is obligately associated with warm-blooded animals and hence occupies thermally buffered niches. Yet during its evolution in the host it has retained a bona fide heat shock response whilst other stress responses have diverged significantly. Furthermore the heat shock response is essential for the virulence of C. albicans. With a view to understanding the relevance of this response to infection we have explored the dynamic regulation of thermal adaptation using an integrative systems biology approach. Our mathematical model of thermal regulation, which has been validated experimentally in C. albicans, describes the dynamic autoregulation of the heat shock transcription factor Hsf1 and the essential chaperone protein Hsp90. We have used this model to show that the thermal adaptation system displays perfect adaptation, that it retains a transient molecular memory, and that Hsf1 is activated during thermal transitions that mimic fever. In addition to providing explanations for the evolutionary conservation of the heat shock response in this pathogen and the relevant of this response to infection, our model provides a platform for the analysis of thermal adaptation in other eukaryotic cells.

  6. Modelling the regulation of thermal adaptation in Candida albicans, a major fungal pathogen of humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle D Leach

    Full Text Available Eukaryotic cells have evolved mechanisms to sense and adapt to dynamic environmental changes. Adaptation to thermal insults, in particular, is essential for their survival. The major fungal pathogen of humans, Candida albicans, is obligately associated with warm-blooded animals and hence occupies thermally buffered niches. Yet during its evolution in the host it has retained a bona fide heat shock response whilst other stress responses have diverged significantly. Furthermore the heat shock response is essential for the virulence of C. albicans. With a view to understanding the relevance of this response to infection we have explored the dynamic regulation of thermal adaptation using an integrative systems biology approach. Our mathematical model of thermal regulation, which has been validated experimentally in C. albicans, describes the dynamic autoregulation of the heat shock transcription factor Hsf1 and the essential chaperone protein Hsp90. We have used this model to show that the thermal adaptation system displays perfect adaptation, that it retains a transient molecular memory, and that Hsf1 is activated during thermal transitions that mimic fever. In addition to providing explanations for the evolutionary conservation of the heat shock response in this pathogen and the relevant of this response to infection, our model provides a platform for the analysis of thermal adaptation in other eukaryotic cells.

  7. Natural selection theory in non-majors' biology: Instruction, assessment and conceptual difficulty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Dianne L.

    Evolution by natural selection is the dominant and unifying theme in biology, yet many college students hold alternative conceptions about the topic even after completing general biology. To develop effective instructional strategies and track conceptual understanding, it is useful to have a detailed assessment tool easily used with large classes. This study presents the Conceptual Inventory of Natural Selection (CINS), a distractor-driven twenty item multiple-choice test that assesses understanding of ten concepts related to natural selection: biotic potential, stable populations, limited natural resources, limited survival, variation within a population, variation inherited, differential survival, change in populations, origin of variation, and origin of species. Development, refinement, and field-testing of individual CINS items are presented, and validity, readability, reliability and factor analysis of the CINS are described. There was significant correlation between student performance on the posttest CINS and end-of-semester interviews suggesting that the CINS is a useful classroom tool. The CINS was used as both a pretest and posttest to determine relative difficulty of the concepts among college students. The three most challenging concepts were random origin of variation, how populations change over time due to changing proportions of alleles, and how new species originate. Many students chose distractors including "need" as a driving force. Results support the use of non-traditional methods, as only students in such classes demonstrated any improvement on the CINS posttest. Pre and posttesting with the CINS was also used to assess relative effectiveness of using two types of supplemental reading materials (selections from narrative, non-textbook sources or from other general biology textbooks) in a general biology course. These results suggest that specific content of readings was more important than style of the readings. Implications for teaching both

  8. Applying the community partnership approach to human biology research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravenscroft, Julia; Schell, Lawrence M; Cole, Tewentahawih'tha'

    2015-01-01

    Contemporary human biology research employs a unique skillset for biocultural analysis. This skillset is highly appropriate for the study of health disparities because disparities result from the interaction of social and biological factors over one or more generations. Health disparities research almost always involves disadvantaged communities owing to the relationship between social position and health in stratified societies. Successful research with disadvantaged communities involves a specific approach, the community partnership model, which creates a relationship beneficial for researcher and community. Paramount is the need for trust between partners. With trust established, partners share research goals, agree on research methods and produce results of interest and importance to all partners. Results are shared with the community as they are developed; community partners also provide input on analyses and interpretation of findings. This article describes a partnership-based, 20 year relationship between community members of the Akwesasne Mohawk Nation and researchers at the University at Albany. As with many communities facing health disparity issues, research with Native Americans and indigenous peoples generally is inherently politicized. For Akwesasne, the contamination of their lands and waters is an environmental justice issue in which the community has faced unequal exposure to, and harm by environmental toxicants. As human biologists engage in more partnership-type research, it is important to understand the long term goals of the community and what is at stake so the research circle can be closed and 'helicopter' style research avoided.

  9. The Structure of Arts, Science, and Humanities Colleges in Major Universities: A Macro-Sociological Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Creswell, John W.; Jones, Larry R.

    1979-01-01

    The structure of arts, science, and humanities colleges within major universities was investigated to determine the relationship between number of faculty or students and the number of administrative levels, and the ratio of administrators to faculty. (SF)

  10. Isolation of biologically-active exosomes from human plasma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muller, Laurent; Hong, Chang-Sook; Stolz, Donna B; Watkins, Simon C; Whiteside, Theresa L

    2014-09-01

    Effects of exosomes present in human plasma on immune cells have not been examined in detail. Immunological studies with plasma-derived exosomes require their isolation by procedures involving ultracentrifugation. These procedures were largely developed using supernatants of cultured cells. To test biologic activities of plasma-derived exosomes, methods are necessary that ensure adequate recovery of exosome fractions free of contaminating larger vesicles, cell fragments and protein/nucleic acid aggregates. Here, an optimized method for exosome isolation from human plasma/serum specimens of normal controls (NC) or cancer patients and its advantages and pitfalls are described. To remove undesirable plasma-contaminating components, ultrafiltration of differentially-centrifuged plasma/serum followed by size-exclusion chromatography prior to ultracentrifugation facilitated the removal of contaminants. Plasma or serum was equally acceptable as a source of exosomes based on the recovered protein levels (in μg protein/mL plasma) and TEM image quality. Centrifugation on sucrose density gradients led to large exosome losses. Fresh plasma was the best source of morphologically-intact exosomes, while the use of frozen/thawed plasma decreased exosome purity but not their biologic activity. Treatments of frozen plasma with DNAse, RNAse or hyaluronidase did not improve exosome purity and are not recommended. Cancer patients' plasma consistently yielded more isolated exosomes than did NCs' plasma. Cancer patients' exosomes also mediated higher immune suppression as evidenced by decreased CD69 expression on responder CD4+ T effector cells. Thus, the described procedure yields biologically-active, morphologically-intact exosomes that have reasonably good purity without large protein losses and can be used for immunological, biomarker and other studies.

  11. Biological restoration of major transportation facilities domestic demonstration and application project (DDAP): technology development at Sandia National Laboratories.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ramsey, James L., Jr. (.,; .); Melton, Brad; Finley, Patrick; Brockman, John; Peyton, Chad E.; Tucker, Mark David; Einfeld, Wayne; Griffith, Richard O.; Brown, Gary Stephen; Lucero, Daniel A.; Betty, Rita G.; McKenna, Sean Andrew; Knowlton, Robert G.; Ho, Pauline

    2006-06-01

    The Bio-Restoration of Major Transportation Facilities Domestic Demonstration and Application Program (DDAP) is a designed to accelerate the restoration of transportation nodes following an attack with a biological warfare agent. This report documents the technology development work done at SNL for this DDAP, which include development of the BROOM tool, an investigation of surface sample collection efficiency, and a flow cytometry study of chlorine dioxide effects on Bacillus anthracis spore viability.

  12. A theoretical lens on a biology intensive orientation program: A study of self-efficacy and self-regulation of freshman biology majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wheeler, Erin R.

    There is a national effort to increase the number of undergraduate students graduating in science, math, engineering, and technology (STEM) (National Science Foundation, 2007). The majority of students initially populating these STEM majors ultimately switch to and graduate from non-STEM majors (Seymour & Hewitt, 2000; Seymour, 2002). The source of attrition from STEM fields lies within the difficulty of concepts presented in freshman STEM introductory courses (Jensen & Moore, 2007, 2008, 2009; Seymour & Hewitt, 2000). These gateway courses are considered high-risk because nearly half of students enrolled in these courses receive either a "D" or "F" or completely withdraw from the course (Labov, 2004). Research shows that students who have uncalibrated self-efficacy and an attenuated self-regulated learning are unsuccessful in high-risk courses (Kitsantas et al., 2008; Ross, Green, Salisbury-Glennon, & Tollefson, 2006; Zimmerman, 2002). Traditional academic assistance, such as tutoring, learning to learn courses, and supplemental instruction, does not explicitly develop an undergraduate's self-efficacy and self-regulated learning as it specifically relates to the STEM domains (Cao & Nietfeld, 2007; Dembo & Seli, 2006; Ross et al., 2006; Simpson, Hind, Nist, Burrell, 1997). Some STEM departments have created academic interventions, such as one-credit seminars, orientation programs, and bridge programs, to directly address the needs of STEM majors (Belzer, 2003; Bonner, 2009; Chevalier, Chrisman, & Kelsey, 2001; Hutchison-Green, Follman, & Bodner, 2008; D. J. Minchella, Yazvac, C. W., Fodrea, R. A., Ball G., 2007; Reyes, Anderson-Rowland, & McCartney, 1998). This study focused on the effect of a biology-intensive orientation program on biology majors' self-efficacy and self-regulated learning. The study utilized approximately 300 undergraduate biology majors participating in a biology-intensive orientation that occurred on August 7-12, 2011, at a public state

  13. Comparative genomics of the major agents of human and animal Sporotrichosis: Sporothrix schenckii and Sporothrix brasiliensis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M.M. Teixeira; L.G.P. de Almeida; P. Kubitschek-Barreira; F.L. Alves; E.S. Kioshima; A.K.R. Abadio; L. Fernandes; L.S. Derengowski; K.S. Ferreira; R.C. Souza; J.C. Ruiz; N.C. de Andrade; H.C. Paes; A.M. Nicola; P. Albuquerque; A.L. Gerber; V.P. Martins; L.D.F. Peconick; A.V. Neto; C.B. Chaucanez; P.A. Silva; O.L. cunha; F.F.M. de Oliveira; T.C. dos Santos; A.L.N. Barros; M.A. Soares; L.M. de Oliveira; M.M. Marini; H. Villalobos-Duno; M.M.L. Cunha; S. de Hoog; J.F. da Silveira; B. Henrissat; G.A. Niño-Vega; P.S. Cisalpino; H.M. Mora-Montes; S.R. Almeida; J.E. Stajich; L.M. Lopes-Bezerra; A.T.R. Vasconcelos; M.S.S. Felipe

    2014-01-01

    Background: The fungal genus Sporothrix includes at least four human pathogenic species. One of these species, S. brasiliensis, is the causal agent of a major ongoing zoonotic outbreak of sporotrichosis in Brazil. Elsewhere, sapronoses are caused by S. schenckii and S. globosa. The major aims on thi

  14. Identification of biologically relevant enhancers in human erythroid cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Mack Y; Steiner, Laurie A; Bogardus, Hannah; Mishra, Tejaswini; Schulz, Vincent P; Hardison, Ross C; Gallagher, Patrick G

    2013-03-22

    Identification of cell type-specific enhancers is important for understanding the regulation of programs controlling cellular development and differentiation. Enhancers are typically marked by the co-transcriptional activator protein p300 or by groups of cell-expressed transcription factors. We hypothesized that a unique set of enhancers regulates gene expression in human erythroid cells, a highly specialized cell type evolved to provide adequate amounts of oxygen throughout the body. Using chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by massively parallel sequencing, genome-wide maps of candidate enhancers were constructed for p300 and four transcription factors, GATA1, NF-E2, KLF1, and SCL, using primary human erythroid cells. These data were combined with gene expression analyses, and candidate enhancers were identified. Consistent with their predicted function as candidate enhancers, there was statistically significant enrichment of p300 and combinations of co-localizing erythroid transcription factors within 1-50 kb of the transcriptional start site (TSS) of genes highly expressed in erythroid cells. Candidate enhancers were also enriched near genes with known erythroid cell function or phenotype. Candidate enhancers exhibited moderate conservation with mouse and minimal conservation with nonplacental vertebrates. Candidate enhancers were mapped to a set of erythroid-associated, biologically relevant, SNPs from the genome-wide association studies (GWAS) catalogue of NHGRI, National Institutes of Health. Fourteen candidate enhancers, representing 10 genetic loci, mapped to sites associated with biologically relevant erythroid traits. Fragments from these loci directed statistically significant expression in reporter gene assays. Identification of enhancers in human erythroid cells will allow a better understanding of erythroid cell development, differentiation, structure, and function and provide insights into inherited and acquired hematologic disease.

  15. Is chronic insomnia a precursor to major depression? Epidemiological and biological findings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baglioni, Chiara; Riemann, Dieter

    2012-10-01

    Insomnia has been found to be a clinical predictor of subsequent depression. Nevertheless the biological processes underlying this causal relationship are yet not fully understood. Both conditions share a common imbalance of the arousal system. Patients with insomnia present fragmented REM sleep, which probably interferes with basal processes of emotion regulation. The interaction between the arousal and the affective system with the persistence of the disorder could slowly alter also the cognitive system and lead to depression. Although preliminary results seem to support this hypothesis, data are still too few to make valid conclusions.

  16. Advances in Biological Science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oppenheimer, Steven B.; And Others

    1988-01-01

    Reviews major developments in areas that are at the cutting edge of biological research. Areas include: human anti-cancer gene, recombinant DNA techniques for the detection of Huntington disease carriers, and marine biology. (CW)

  17. Learning Science by Engaging Religion: A Novel Two-Course Approach for Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisen, Arri; Huang, Junjian

    2014-01-01

    Many issues in science create individual and societal tensions with important implications outside the classroom. We describe one model that directly addresses such tensions by integrating science and religion in two parallel, integrated courses for science majors. Evaluation of the goals of the project--(1) providing students with strategies to…

  18. The effects of problem-based learning on the self-efficacy and attitudes of beginning biology majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajab, Adel Mohammad

    The problem of low persistence of science majors has resulted in calls for changes in undergraduate instruction toward environments that foster positive self-efficacy among beginning science majors. Low science self-efficacy and poor attitudes toward science may contribute to high attrition rates of science majors. Classroom environments that foster positive self-efficacy development include pedagogies that promote authentic learning contexts and involve collaborative learning teams. Problem-based learning (PBL) is an instructional model that attempts to create both conditions and may provide every source of information needed for the development of self-efficacy (i.e., mastery experiences, vicarious experiences, verbal persuasion, and physiological states) as postulated by Albert Bandura. The degree to which these sources of self-efficacy are delivered to individuals within a PBL group may depend on how the group members interact and how students perceive the PBL process itself. This study examined the development of biology self-efficacy and attitudes among biology majors in a PBL setting and in a traditional lecture-based setting. Specifically, this project investigated changes in students' biology self-efficacy beliefs, mediating aspects of PBL in self-efficacy development, the relationship between PBL processes and group collective efficacy, the predictive nature of entering self-efficacy levels on attitudes toward PBL and mid-term grades, and changes in student attitudes toward biology. The study design was quasi-experimental and included quantitative pre- and post-surveys, qualitative interviews, and classroom observations. Findings revealed that students enrolled in a PBL class exhibited greater gains in biology self-efficacy and were likely to report more favorable attitudes toward biology compared to students enrolled in a traditional class. The aspects of PBL that most accounted for these findings were students' ownership of the learning process, their

  19. Biological knowledge-driven analysis of epistasis in human GWAS with application to lipid traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Li; Keinan, Alon; Clark, Andrew G

    2015-01-01

    While the importance of epistasis is well established, specific gene-gene interactions have rarely been identified in human genome-wide association studies (GWAS), mainly due to low power associated with such interaction tests. In this chapter, we integrate biological knowledge and human GWAS data to reveal epistatic interactions underlying quantitative lipid traits, which are major risk factors for coronary artery disease. To increase power to detect interactions, we only tested pairs of SNPs filtered by prior biological knowledge, including GWAS results, protein-protein interactions (PPIs), and pathway information. Using published GWAS and 9,713 European Americans (EA) from the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) study, we identified an interaction between HMGCR and LIPC affecting high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) levels. We then validated this interaction in additional multiethnic cohorts from ARIC, the Framingham Heart Study, and the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis. Both HMGCR and LIPC are involved in the metabolism of lipids and lipoproteins, and LIPC itself has been marginally associated with HDL-C. Furthermore, no significant interaction was detected using PPI and pathway information, mainly due to the stringent significance level required after correcting for the large number of tests conducted. These results suggest the potential of biological knowledge-driven approaches to detect epistatic interactions in human GWAS, which may hold the key to exploring the role gene-gene interactions play in connecting genotypes and complex phenotypes in future GWAS.

  20. The relationship of parental influence on student career choice of biology and non-biology majors enrolled in a freshman biology course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sowell, Mitzie Leigh

    Recent declines in science literacy and inadequate numbers of individuals entering science careers has heightened the importance of determining why students major in science or do not major in science and then choose a science-related career. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between parental influences and student career choices of both males and females majoring and not majoring in science. This study specifically examined the constructs of parental occupation, parental involvement, and parental education levels. Aspects indicated by the participants as being influencers were also examined. In addition, differences between males and females were examined. A total of 282 students participated in the study; 122 were science majors and 160 were non-science majors. The data was collected through the use of a student information survey and the Modified Fennema-Sherman Attitude Scale. The findings suggest that students indicated the desire to help others, peers, salary, and skills as influencing their career choice. In regard to the various parental influences, mother's occupation was the only construct found as a statistically significant influencer on a student's decision to major in science. The results of this study can help educators, administrators, and policy makers understand what influences students to pursue science-related careers and possibly increase the number of students entering science-related careers. The results of the study specifically provide information that may prove useful to administrators and educators in the health science fields, particularly nursing fields. The findings provide insight into why students may choose to become nurses.

  1. Using a Popular Science Nonfiction Book to Introduce Biomedical Research Ethics in a Biology Majors Course †

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walton, Kristen L. W.

    2014-01-01

    Although bioethics is an important topic in modern society, it is not a required part of the curriculum for many biology degree programs in the United States. Students in our program are exposed to biologically relevant ethical issues informally in many classes, but we do not have a requirement for a separate bioethics course. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks is a recent nonfiction book that describes the life of the woman whose cervical cancer biopsy gave rise to the HeLa cell line, as well as discussing relevant medical, societal, and ethical issues surrounding human tissue use for research. Weekly reading assignments from the book with discussion questions and a final paper were used to engage students in learning about the ethics of human subjects and human tissues research. Students were surveyed for qualitative feedback on the usefulness of including this book as part of the course. This book has been a successful platform for increasing student knowledge and interest in ethics related to biomedical and biological research. PMID:25574289

  2. The use of buccal cells in human biological monitoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ewa Błaszczyk

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available One of the basic methods for determining the degree of environmental risk posed to humans is identification of harmful substances in various environmental elements (air, water, soil, food. In contrast to environmental monitoring human biological monitoring (HBM enables the estimation of an absorbed dose, general or localized in a specific organ. HBM enables the assessment of exposure to substances which are absorbed by the body via different exposure pathways and with different contaminant carriers. It is based on the measurement of indicators, the so-called biomarkers, in body fluids (blood, urine, saliva, etc. or in tissues and organs. Biomarkers can be divided into markers of exposure, effects and susceptibility. A particularly useful method is determination of adducts, i.e. carcinogenic compounds (or their metabolites with proteins or DNA, which are markers of exposure. Biomarkers of biological effects are different cytogenetic changes, including micronuclei. These are extranuclear structures containing fragments of chromatin (arising as a result of DNA breaks or whole chromosomes (damage to the spindle apparatus during mitosis. Up to now most studies on the DNA adduct levels and micronuclei have been conducted in peripheral lymphocytes. At present, studies using blood, especially in children to restricted to ethical aspects, and therefore tests using epithelial cells from the oral cavity have become more popular. Epithelial cells are the main building material of an epithelial tissue which makes up about 60% of all cells of the human body. The main function of the epithelial tissue is covering and lining of the outer and inner surfaces of the body. Epithelium underwent high specialisation in various parts of the human body, which is associated with its structure and function. Human oral cavity is covered by stratified squamous epithelium, which is comprised of cells called keratinocytes. Oral epithelial cells may differentiate in two

  3. Proteome profile and biological activity of caprine, bovine and human milk fat globules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spertino, Stefano; Cipriani, Valentina; De Angelis, Chiara; Giuffrida, Maria Gabriella; Marsano, Francesco; Cavaletto, Maria

    2012-04-01

    Upon combining bidimensional electrophoresis with monodimensional separation, a more comprehensive analysis of the milk fat globule membrane has been obtained. The proteomic profile of caprine milk fat globules revealed the presence of butyrophilin, lactadherin and perilipin as the major proteins, they were also associated to bovine and human milk fat globule membranes. Xanthine dehydrogenase/oxidase has been detected only in monodimensional gels. Biological activity of milk fat globules has been evaluated in Caco2-cells, as a representative model of the intestinal barrier. The increase of cell viability was indicative of a potential nutraceutical role for the whole milk fat globule, suggesting a possible employment in milk formula preparation.

  4. Recombinant human thrombopoietin: basic biology and evaluation of clinical studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuter, David J; Begley, C Glenn

    2002-11-15

    Thrombocytopenia is a common medical problem for which the main treatment is platelet transfusion. Given the increasing use of platelets and the declining donor population, identification of a safe and effective platelet growth factor could improve the management of thrombocytopenia. Thrombopoietin (TPO), the c-Mpl ligand, is the primary physiologic regulator of megakaryocyte and platelet development. Since the purification of TPO in 1994, 2 recombinant forms of the c-Mpl ligand--recombinant human thrombopoietin (rhTPO) and pegylated recombinant human megakaryocyte growth and development factor (PEG-rHuMGDF)--have undergone extensive clinical investigation. Both have been shown to be potent stimulators of megakaryocyte growth and platelet production and are biologically active in reducing the thrombocytopenia of nonmyeloablative chemotherapy. However, neither TPO has demonstrated benefit in stem cell transplantation or leukemia chemotherapy. Other clinical studies have investigated the use of TPO in treating chronic nonchemotherapy-induced thrombocytopenia associated with myelodysplastic syndromes, idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, thrombocytopenia due to human immunodeficiency virus, and liver disease. Based solely on animal studies, TPO may be effective in reducing surgical thrombocytopenia and bleeding, ex vivo expansion of pluripotent stem cells, and as a radioprotectant. Ongoing and future studies will help define the clinical role of recombinant TPO and TPO mimetics in the treatment of chemotherapy- and nonchemotherapy-induced thrombocytopenia.

  5. Nitric Oxide-Related Biological Pathways in Patients with Major Depression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Baranyi

    Full Text Available Major depression is a well-known risk factor for cardiovascular diseases and increased mortality following myocardial infarction. However, biomarkers of depression and increased cardiovascular risk are still missing. The aim of this prospective study was to evaluate, whether nitric-oxide (NO related factors for endothelial dysfunction, such as global arginine bioavailability, arginase activity, L-arginine/ADMA ratio and the arginine metabolites asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA and symmetric dimethylarginine (SDMA might be biomarkers for depression-induced cardiovascular risk.In 71 in-patients with major depression and 48 healthy controls the Global Arginine Bioavailability Ratio (GABR, arginase activity (arginine/ornithine ratio, the L-arginine/ADMA ratio, ADMA, and SDMA were determined by high-pressure liquid chromatography. Psychiatric and laboratory assessments were obtained at baseline at the time of in-patient admittance and at the time of hospital discharge.The ADMA concentrations in patients with major depression were significantly elevated and the SDMA concentrations were significantly decreased in comparison with the healthy controls. Even after a first improvement of depression, ADMA and SDMA levels remained nearly unchanged. In addition, after a first improvement of depression at the time of hospital discharge, a significant decrease in arginase activity, an increased L-arginine/ADMA ratio and a trend for increased global arginine bioavailability were observed.Our study results are evidence that in patients with major depression ADMA and SDMA might be biomarkers to indicate an increased cardiovascular threat due to depression-triggered NO reduction. GABR, the L-arginine/ADMA ratio and arginase activity might be indicators of therapy success and increased NO production after remission.

  6. Biological effects of exposure to static electric fields in humans and vertebrates: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petri, Anne-Kathrin; Schmiedchen, Kristina; Stunder, Dominik; Dechent, Dagmar; Kraus, Thomas; Bailey, William H; Driessen, Sarah

    2017-04-17

    High-voltage direct current (HVDC) lines are the technology of choice for the transport of large amounts of energy over long distances. The operation of these lines produces static electric fields (EF), but the data reviewed in previous assessments were not sufficient to assess the need for any environmental limit. The aim of this systematic review was to update the current state of research and to evaluate biological effects of static EF. Using the PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses) recommendations, we collected and evaluated experimental and epidemiological studies examining biological effects of exposure to static EF in humans (n = 8) and vertebrates (n = 40). There is good evidence that humans and animals are able to perceive the presence of static EF at sufficiently high levels. Hair movements caused by electrostatic forces may play a major role in this perception. A large number of studies reported responses of animals (e.g., altered metabolic, immunologic or developmental parameters) to a broad range of static EF strengths as well, but these responses are likely secondary physiological responses to sensory stimulation. Furthermore, the quality of many of the studies reporting physiological responses is poor, which raises concerns about confounding. The weight of the evidence from the literature reviewed did not indicate that static EF have adverse biological effects in humans or animals. The evidence strongly supported the role of superficial sensory stimulation of hair and skin as the basis for perception of the field, as well as reported indirect behavioral and physiological responses. Physical considerations also preclude any direct effect of static EF on internal physiology, and reports that some physiological processes are affected in minor ways may be explained by other factors. While this literature does not support a level of concern about biological effects of exposure to static EF, the conditions

  7. Human mast cell tryptase in biology and medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vitte, Joana

    2015-01-01

    The most abundant prestored enzyme of human mast cell secretory granules is the serine-protease tryptase. In humans, there are four tryptase isoforms, but only two of them, namely the alpha and beta tryptases, are known as medically important. Low levels of continuous tryptase production as an immature monomer makes up the major part of the baseline serum tryptase levels, while transient release of mature tetrameric tryptase upon mast cell degranulation accounts for the anaphylactic rise of serum tryptase levels. Serum tryptase determination contributes to the diagnosis or monitoring of mast cell disorders including mast cell activation - induced anaphylaxis, mastocytosis and a number of myeloproliferative conditions with mast cell lineage involvement. Baseline serum tryptase levels are predictive of the severity risk in some allergic conditions.

  8. Th1-like human T-cell clones recognizing Leishmania gp63 inhibit Leishmania major in human macrophages

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kemp, M; Hey, A S; Bendtzen, K

    1994-01-01

    The major surface protease of Leishmania major, gp63, has been suggested as a vaccine candidate for cutaneous leishmaniasis. In this study gp63 was purified from L. major promastigotes. A panel of human T-cell clones recognizing this protein were generated from individuals who had previously had...... self-healing cutaneous leishmaniasis. The T-cell clones expressed CD4, and the alpha chain of the T-cell antigen receptor. GP63 reactive T-cell clones activated by antigen or by immobilized anti-CD3 antibody released relative large amounts of interferon-gamma and no or little interleukin-4, thereby...... resembling Th1 cells. Autologous mononuclear cells and Epstein-Barr virus-transformed B cell lines were equally efficient in presenting the antigen to the T cells. The gp63 reactive T cells induced resistance to infection in cultured human macrophages by L. major. The data confirm that human CD4+ T cells...

  9. Modeling human risk: Cell & molecular biology in context

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1997-06-01

    It is anticipated that early in the next century manned missions into outer space will occur, with a mission to Mars scheduled between 2015 and 2020. However, before such missions can be undertaken, a realistic estimation of the potential risks to the flight crews is required. One of the uncertainties remaining in this risk estimation is that posed by the effects of exposure to the radiation environment of outer space. Although the composition of this environment is fairly well understood, the biological effects arising from exposure to it are not. The reasons for this are three-fold: (1) A small but highly significant component of the radiation spectrum in outer space consists of highly charged, high energy (HZE) particles which are not routinely experienced on earth, and for which there are insufficient data on biological effects; (2) Most studies on the biological effects of radiation to date have been high-dose, high dose-rate, whereas in space, with the exception of solar particle events, radiation exposures will be low-dose, low dose-rate; (3) Although it has been established that the virtual absence of gravity in space has a profound effect on human physiology, it is not clear whether these effects will act synergistically with those of radiation exposure. A select panel will evaluate the utilizing experiments and models to accurately predict the risks associated with exposure to HZE particles. Topics of research include cellular and tissue response, health effects associated with radiation damage, model animal systems, and critical markers of Radiation response.

  10. Biologically recycled continental iron is a major component in banded iron formations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Weiqiang; Beard, Brian L; Johnson, Clark M

    2015-07-07

    Banded iron formations (BIFs) record a time of extensive Fe deposition in the Precambrian oceans, but the sources and pathways for metals in BIFs remain controversial. Here, we present Fe- and Nd-isotope data that indicate two sources of Fe for the large BIF units deposited 2.5 billion y ago. High-εNd and -δ(56)Fe signatures in some BIF samples record a hydrothermal component, but correlated decreases in εNd- and δ(56)Fe values reflect contributions from a continental component. The continental Fe source is best explained by Fe mobilization on the continental margin by microbial dissimilatory iron reduction (DIR) and confirms for the first time, to our knowledge, a microbially driven Fe shuttle for the largest BIFs on Earth. Detailed sampling at various scales shows that the proportions of hydrothermal and continental Fe sources were invariant over periods of 10(0)-10(3) y, indicating that there was no seasonal control, although Fe sources varied on longer timescales of 10(5)-10(6) y, suggesting a control by marine basin circulation. These results show that Fe sources and pathways for BIFs reflect the interplay between abiologic (hydrothermal) and biologic processes, where the latter reflects DIR that operated on a basin-wide scale in the Archean.

  11. Manipulatives-Based Laboratory for Majors Biology – a Hands-On Approach to Understanding Respiration and Photosynthesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah M. Boomer

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available The first course in our year-long introductory series for Biology majors encompasses four learning units: biological molecules and cells, metabolism, genetics, and evolution. Of these, the metabolism unit, which includes respiration and photosynthesis, has shown the lowest student exam scores, least interest, and lowest laboratory ratings. Consequently, we hypothesized that modeling metabolic processes in the laboratory would improve student content learning during this course unit. Specifically, we developed manipulatives-based laboratory exercises that combined paper cutouts, movable blocks, and large diagrams of the cell. In particular, our novel use of connecting LEGO blocks allowed students to move model electrons and phosphates between molecules and within defined spaces of the cell. We assessed student learning using both formal (content indicators and attitude surveys and informal (the identification of misconceptions or discussions with students approaches. On the metabolism unit content exam, student performance improved by 46% over pretest scores and by the end of the course, the majority of students rated metabolism as their most-improved (43% and favorite (33% subject as compared with other unit topics. The majority of students rated manipulatives-based labs as very helpful, as compared to non-manipulatives-based labs. In this report, we will demonstrate that students made learning gains across all content areas, but most notably in the unit that covered respiration and photosynthesis.

  12. Chemical, biological, morphoanatomical and antimicrobial study of Ocotea puchury-major Mart.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leporatti, Maria Lucia; Pintore, Giorgio; Foddai, Marzia; Chessa, Mario; Piana, Andrea; Petretto, Giacomo Luigi; Masia, Maria Dolores; Mangano, Giuseppe; Nicoletti, Marcello

    2014-01-01

    Ocotea puchury-major Mart. is a tree native to the Brazilian rain forest, where it is popularly known as puxurì. In local folk medicine the leaves are used for their sedative, gastroenteric and antireumatic properties. The morphoanatomical study determined those features useful in distinguishing this species from other closely related taxa. Chemical analysis was focused on the study of the volatile oil. Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analyses indicated safrol as the main compound of the volatile oil (39%). The results confirm and authenticate the use of its leaves in folk medicine. Furthermore, safrol is economically important as the starting material for hemisynthesis of several products. The antimicrobial activity of the essential oil was studied which showed promising activity against environmental microorganisms as well as anti-inflammatory activity.

  13. An ESR study on biological dosimeters: Human hair

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Colak, Seyda, E-mail: seyda@hacettepe.edu.t [Hacettepe University, Physics Engineering Department, 06800 Ankara (Turkey); Ozbey, Turan [Hacettepe University, Physics Engineering Department, 06800 Ankara (Turkey)

    2011-05-15

    In the present work, characteristic features of the radicals found in untreated, gamma and UV-irradiated and mechanical damaged human hair samples were investigated by ESR spectroscopy. Heights of the resonance peaks measured with respect to the spectrum base line were used to monitor microwave power, dose-response, storage time and temperature dependent kinetic features of the radical species contributing to the formation of recorded experimental ESR spectra. Peak heights and g-values (2.0037-2.0052) determined from recorded spectra of hair were color dependent with {Delta}Hpp-0.47 mT. The act of cutting hair samples gene rates sulfur centered radicals which are found in the a-keratin structure of hair. The variations of the peak heights with temperature were related with the water content found in the hair samples. In the 6-1100 Gy dose range, a linear + quadratic dose-response curve was recorded for hair and the mean radiation yield (G{sub mean}) was calculated to be 0.4. The gamma radiation induced radicals were stable for a several hours at room temperature storage conditions. Based on these findings it was concluded that human hair samples could be used as biological/personnel dosimeters and that ESR spectroscopy could be successfully used as a potential technique for monitoring its dosimetric behaviours.

  14. Evolution and personal religious belief: Christian biology-related majors' search for reconciliation at a Christian university

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winslow, Mark William

    The goal of this study was to explore how Christian biology-related majors at a Christian university perceive the apparent conflicts between their understanding of evolution and their religious beliefs, and how their faith, as a structural-developmental system for ordering and making meaning of the world, plays a role in the mediating process. This naturalistic study utilized a case study design of 15 participants specified as undergraduate biology-related majors or recent biology-related graduates from a midwestern Christian university who had completed an upper-level course on evolution. Data were collected through semi-structured interviews that investigated participants' faith and their views on creationism and evolution. Fowler's theory of faith development and Parks' model of college students' faith was extensively used. Additional data were collected through an Evolution Attitudes Survey and a position paper on evolution as an assignment in the evolution course. Data analysis revealed patterns that were organized into themes and sub-themes that were the major outcomes of the study. Most participants were raised to believe in creationism, but came to accept evolution through an extended process of evaluating the scientific evidence in support of evolution, negotiating the literalness of Genesis, recognizing evolution as a non-salvation issue, and observing professors as role models of Christians who accept evolution. Participants remained committed to their personal religious beliefs despite apprehension that accompanied the reconciliation process in accepting evolution. Most participants operated from the perspective that science and religion are separate and interacting domains. Faith played an important role in how participants reconciled their understanding of evolution and their personal religious beliefs. Participants who operated in conventional faith dismissed contentious issues or collapsed dichotomies in an effort to avoid ambiguity and perceived

  15. Abnormal functional brain asymmetry in depression: evidence of biologic commonality between major depression and dysthymia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruder, Gerard E; Stewart, Jonathan W; Hellerstein, David; Alvarenga, Jorge E; Alschuler, Daniel; McGrath, Patrick J

    2012-04-30

    Prior studies have found abnormalities of functional brain asymmetry in patients having a major depressive disorder (MDD). This study aimed to replicate findings of reduced right hemisphere advantage for perceiving dichotic complex tones in depressed patients, and to determine whether patients having "pure" dysthymia show the same abnormality of perceptual asymmetry as MDD. It also examined gender differences in lateralization, and the extent to which abnormalities of perceptual asymmetry in depressed patients are dependent on gender. Unmedicated patients having either a MDD (n=96) or "pure" dysthymic disorder (n=42) and healthy controls (n=114) were tested on dichotic fused-words and complex-tone tests. Patient and control groups differed in right hemisphere advantage for complex tones, but not left hemisphere advantage for words. Reduced right hemisphere advantage for tones was equally present in MDD and dysthymia, but was more evident among depressed men than depressed women. Also, healthy men had greater hemispheric asymmetry than healthy women for both words and tones, whereas this gender difference was not seen for depressed patients. Dysthymia and MDD share a common abnormality of hemispheric asymmetry for dichotic listening.

  16. Computational approaches towards understanding human long non-coding RNA biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jalali, Saakshi; Kapoor, Shruti; Sivadas, Ambily; Bhartiya, Deeksha; Scaria, Vinod

    2015-07-15

    Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) form the largest class of non-protein coding genes in the human genome. While a small subset of well-characterized lncRNAs has demonstrated their significant role in diverse biological functions like chromatin modifications, post-transcriptional regulation, imprinting etc., the functional significance of a vast majority of them still remains an enigma. Increasing evidence of the implications of lncRNAs in various diseases including cancer and major developmental processes has further enhanced the need to gain mechanistic insights into the lncRNA functions. Here, we present a comprehensive review of the various computational approaches and tools available for the identification and annotation of long non-coding RNAs. We also discuss a conceptual roadmap to systematically explore the functional properties of the lncRNAs using computational approaches.

  17. What is human in humans? Responses from biology, anthropology, and philosophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bibeau, Gilles

    2011-08-01

    Genomics has brought biology, medicine, agriculture, psychology, anthropology, and even philosophy to a new threshold. In this new context, the question about "what is human in humans" may end up being answered by geneticists, specialists of technoscience, and owners of biotech companies. The author defends, in this article, the idea that humanity is at risk in our age of genetic engineering, biotechnologies, and market-geared genetic research; he also argues that the values at the very core of our postgenomic era bring to its peak the science-based ideology that has developed since the time of Galileo, Newton, Descartes, and Harvey; finally, it shows that the bioindustry has invented a new genomythology that goes against the scientific evidence produced by the research in human sciences in which life is interpreted as a language.

  18. Human parvovirus B19 in patients with beta thalassemia major from Tehran, Iran

    OpenAIRE

    Arabzadeh, Seyed Ali Mohammad; Alizadeh, Farideh; Tavakoli, Ahmad; Mollaei, Hamidreza; Bokharaei-Salim, Farah; Karimi, Gharib; Farahmand, Mohammad; Mortazavi, Helya Sadat; Monavari, Seyed Hamidreza

    2017-01-01

    Background Due to the tropism of human parvovirus B19 to erythroid progenitor cells, infection in patients with an underlying hemolytic disorder such as beta-thalassemia major leads to suppression of erythrocyte formation, referred to as transient aplasia crisis (TAC), which may be life-threatening. We investigated the prevalence of parvovirus B19 among patients with beta thalassemia major attending the Zafar Adult Thalassemia Clinic in Tehran, Iran. Methods This cross-sectional study was per...

  19. EMPIRICAL REFLECTIONS ON MIGRATION PHENOMENON. MAJOR EFFECTS OF MIGRATION ON THE HUMAN CAPITAL

    OpenAIRE

    Simona BUTA; Rozalia Iuliana KICSI

    2013-01-01

    The paper Empirical reflections on migration phenomenon. Major effects of migration on the human capital analyzes the migration flows of the workforce (as part of the human capital) globally/regionally, especially the highly qualified workforce migration. The qualified manpower processes of attracting on the work market have not been always well understood and, in some cases, have generated a series of difficulties. This is the reason why we will focus on the „waste of brains” phenomenon, whi...

  20. Highlights of the Biology and Disease-driven Human Proteome Project, 2015-2016.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Eyk, Jennifer E; Corrales, Fernando J; Aebersold, Ruedi; Cerciello, Ferdinando; Deutsch, Eric W; Roncada, Paola; Sanchez, Jean-Charles; Yamamoto, Tadashi; Yang, Pengyuan; Zhang, Hui; Omenn, Gilbert S

    2016-11-04

    The Biology and Disease-driven Human Proteome Project (B/D-HPP) is aimed at supporting and enhancing the broad use of state-of-the-art proteomic methods to characterize and quantify proteins for in-depth understanding of the molecular mechanisms of biological processes and human disease. Based on a foundation of the pre-existing HUPO initiatives begun in 2002, the B/D-HPP is designed to provide standardized methods and resources for mass spectrometry and specific protein affinity reagents and facilitate accessibility of these resources to the broader life sciences research and clinical communities. Currently there are 22 B/D-HPP initiatives and 3 closely related HPP resource pillars. The B/D-HPP groups are working to define sets of protein targets that are highly relevant to each particular field to deliver relevant assays for the measurement of these selected targets and to disseminate and make publicly accessible the information and tools generated. Major developments are the 2016 publications of the Human SRM Atlas and of "popular protein sets" for six organ systems. Here we present the current activities and plans of the BD-HPP initiatives as highlighted in numerous B/D-HPP workshops at the 14th annual HUPO 2015 World Congress of Proteomics in Vancouver, Canada.

  1. AVERAGE BIOLOGICAL INDICES OF THE MAJOR FISH SPECIES OF THE ZAPORIZHZHIA RESERVOIR AND OTHER FISHERY WATER BODIES OF DNEPROPETROVSK REGION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Fedonenko

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. To investigate, analyze and summarize the biological indices of commercial fish species in the main fishery water bodies of Dnіpropetrovsk region for the last 10 years. Methodology. Field data were collected in the Zaporizhzhia reservoir during 2003 – 2013 using a standard set of monitoring fishing gears (gill nets with mesh size a=30–120 mm. Juvenile fish were caught in third decade of June - first decade of August using the juvenile fish beach seine with a length of 10 m. Processing of ichthyological materials was conducted according to generally accepted methods. Findings. When comparing the biological indices of fish in the Zaporіzhzhia reservoir with the data for the past decade reflected in the normative documents, we found significant changes in the population of pikeperch (Sander lucioperca and gibel carp (Carassius gibelio, which concern the average fish weight, fertility and the relative proportion of females in the spawning stock. Roach (Rutilus rutilus, perch (Perca fluviatilis, and gibel carp are characterized a reduced number of spawning events. The biological indices of bream (Abramis brama, common carp (Cyprinus, pike (Esox lucius and catfish (Silurus glanis populations remain virtually unchanged during the study period. As for biological indices of Black and Caspian Sea sprat, rudd, gobies and crayfish, the information on these species in the relevant regulatory documents is missing, so it is not possible to assess the dynamics of their changes. Due to an inventory of small fishery water bodies we received the information on the biological indicators of major species, which can also be used for updating the normative database. Originality. For the first time we summarized the characteristic of fish fauna in major fishery water bodies of Dnepropetrovsk region and analyzed main indices, which define the conditions of fish stock development and exploitation of aquatic living aquatic resources in fishery water bodies

  2. Predicting Student Success in a Major's Introductory Biology Course via Logistic Regression Analysis of Scientific Reasoning Ability and Mathematics Scores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, E. David; Bowling, Bethany V.; Markle, Ross E.

    2017-02-01

    Studies over the last 30 years have considered various factors related to student success in introductory biology courses. While much of the available literature suggests that the best predictors of success in a college course are prior college grade point average (GPA) and class attendance, faculty often require a valuable predictor of success in those courses wherein the majority of students are in the first semester and have no previous record of college GPA or attendance. In this study, we evaluated the efficacy of the ACT Mathematics subject exam and Lawson's Classroom Test of Scientific Reasoning in predicting success in a major's introductory biology course. A logistic regression was utilized to determine the effectiveness of a combination of scientific reasoning (SR) scores and ACT math (ACT-M) scores to predict student success. In summary, we found that the model—with both SR and ACT-M as significant predictors—could be an effective predictor of student success and thus could potentially be useful in practical decision making for the course, such as directing students to support services at an early point in the semester.

  3. Emission of nitrous acid from soil and biological soil crusts as a major source of atmospheric HONO on Cyprus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meusel, Hannah; Tamm, Alexandra; Wu, Dianming; Kuhn, Uwe; Leifke, Anna-Lena; Weber, Bettina; Su, Hang; Lelieveld, Jos; Hoffmann, Thorsten; Pöschl, Ulrich; Cheng, Yafang

    2017-04-01

    Elucidation of the sources and atmospheric chemistry of nitrous acid (HONO) is highly relevant, as HONO is an important precursor of OH radicals. Up to 30% of the OH budget are formed by photolysis of HONO, whereas major fractions of HONO measured in the field derive from yet unidentified sources. Heterogeneous conversion of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) to HONO on a variety of surfaces (soot, humic acid aerosol) is assumed to be a major HONO source (Stemmler et al., 2007, Ammann et al., 1998). In rural regions, however, NO2 concentrations were found to be too low to explain observed HONO concentrations, as e.g., in the case of a recent field study on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus (Meusel et al., 2016). In this study a good correlation between missing sources of HONO and nitrogen oxide (NO) was found indicating a common origin of both reactive nitrogen compounds. Simultaneous emission of HONO and NO from soil was reported earlier (Oswald et al., 2013), and enhanced emission rates were found when soil was covered by biological soil crusts in arid and semi-arid ecosystems (Weber et al., 2015). In the present study we measured HONO and NO emissions of 43 soil and soil crust samples from Cyprus during full wetting and drying cycles under controlled laboratory conditions by means of a dynamic chamber system. The observed range of HONO and NO emissions was in agreement with earlier studies, but unlike the study of Weber et al. (2015), we found highest emission from bare soil, followed by soil covered by light and dark cyanobacteria-dominated biological soil crusts. Emission rates correlated well with the nitrite and nitrate contents of soil and biological soil crust samples, and higher nutrient contents of bare soil samples, as compared to the previous biological soil crust study, explain the higher bare soil emissions. Integrating the emission rates of bare soil and the different types of biological soil crusts, based on their local relative abundance, the calculated

  4. DNA methylation profiling of the human major histocompatibility complex: a pilot study for the human epigenome project.

    OpenAIRE

    Rakyan, Vardhman K.; Thomas Hildmann; Novik, Karen L; Jörn Lewin; Jörg Tost; Antony V Cox; T Dan Andrews; Howe, Kevin L.; Thomas Otto; Alexander Olek; Judith Fischer; Gut, Ivo G.; Kurt Berlin; Stephan Beck

    2004-01-01

    The Human Epigenome Project aims to identify, catalogue, and interpret genome-wide DNA methylation phenomena. Occurring naturally on cytosine bases at cytosine–guanine dinucleotides, DNA methylation is intimately involved in diverse biological processes and the aetiology of many diseases. Differentially methylated cytosines give rise to distinct profiles, thought to be specific for gene activity, tissue type, and disease state. The identification of such methylation variable positions will si...

  5. The DNA sequence and biology of human chromosome 19.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grimwood, Jane; Gordon, Laurie A; Olsen, Anne; Terry, Astrid; Schmutz, Jeremy; Lamerdin, Jane; Hellsten, Uffe; Goodstein, David; Couronne, Olivier; Tran-Gyamfi, Mary; Aerts, Andrea; Altherr, Michael; Ashworth, Linda; Bajorek, Eva; Black, Stacey; Branscomb, Elbert; Caenepeel, Sean; Carrano, Anthony; Caoile, Chenier; Chan, Yee Man; Christensen, Mari; Cleland, Catherine A; Copeland, Alex; Dalin, Eileen; Dehal, Paramvir; Denys, Mirian; Detter, John C; Escobar, Julio; Flowers, Dave; Fotopulos, Dea; Garcia, Carmen; Georgescu, Anca M; Glavina, Tijana; Gomez, Maria; Gonzales, Eidelyn; Groza, Matthew; Hammon, Nancy; Hawkins, Trevor; Haydu, Lauren; Ho, Isaac; Huang, Wayne; Israni, Sanjay; Jett, Jamie; Kadner, Kristen; Kimball, Heather; Kobayashi, Arthur; Larionov, Vladimer; Leem, Sun-Hee; Lopez, Frederick; Lou, Yunian; Lowry, Steve; Malfatti, Stephanie; Martinez, Diego; McCready, Paula; Medina, Catherine; Morgan, Jenna; Nelson, Kathryn; Nolan, Matt; Ovcharenko, Ivan; Pitluck, Sam; Pollard, Martin; Popkie, Anthony P; Predki, Paul; Quan, Glenda; Ramirez, Lucia; Rash, Sam; Retterer, James; Rodriguez, Alex; Rogers, Stephanine; Salamov, Asaf; Salazar, Angelica; She, Xinwei; Smith, Doug; Slezak, Tom; Solovyev, Victor; Thayer, Nina; Tice, Hope; Tsai, Ming; Ustaszewska, Anna; Vo, Nu; Wagner, Mark; Wheeler, Jeremy; Wu, Kevin; Xie, Gary; Yang, Joan; Dubchak, Inna; Furey, Terrence S; DeJong, Pieter; Dickson, Mark; Gordon, David; Eichler, Evan E; Pennacchio, Len A; Richardson, Paul; Stubbs, Lisa; Rokhsar, Daniel S; Myers, Richard M; Rubin, Edward M; Lucas, Susan M

    2004-04-01

    Chromosome 19 has the highest gene density of all human chromosomes, more than double the genome-wide average. The large clustered gene families, corresponding high G + C content, CpG islands and density of repetitive DNA indicate a chromosome rich in biological and evolutionary significance. Here we describe 55.8 million base pairs of highly accurate finished sequence representing 99.9% of the euchromatin portion of the chromosome. Manual curation of gene loci reveals 1,461 protein-coding genes and 321 pseudogenes. Among these are genes directly implicated in mendelian disorders, including familial hypercholesterolaemia and insulin-resistant diabetes. Nearly one-quarter of these genes belong to tandemly arranged families, encompassing more than 25% of the chromosome. Comparative analyses show a fascinating picture of conservation and divergence, revealing large blocks of gene orthology with rodents, scattered regions with more recent gene family expansions and deletions, and segments of coding and non-coding conservation with the distant fish species Takifugu.

  6. Can Chimpanzee Biology Highlight Human Origin and Evolution?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Itai Roffman

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available The closest living relatives of humans are their chimpanzee/bonobo (Pan sister species, members of the same subfamily “Homininae”. This classification is supported by over 50 years of research in the fields of chimpanzee cultural diversity, language competency, genomics, anatomy, high cognition, psychology, society, self-consciousness and relation to others, tool use/production, as well as Homo level emotions, symbolic competency, memory recollection, complex multifaceted problem-solving capabilities, and interspecies communication. Language competence and symbolism can be continuously bridged from chimpanzee to man. Emotions, intercommunity aggression, body language, gestures, facial expressions, and vocalization of intonations seem to parallel between the sister taxa Homo and Pan. The shared suite of traits between Pan and Homo genus demonstrated in this article integrates old and new information on human–chimpanzee evolution, bilateral informational and cross-cultural exchange, promoting the urgent need for Pan cultures in the wild to be protected, as they are part of the cultural heritage of mankind. Also, we suggest that bonobos, Pan paniscus, based on shared traits with Australopithecus, need to be included in Australopithecine’s subgenus, and may even represent living-fossil Australopithecines. Unfolding bonobo and chimpanzee biology highlights our common genetic and cultural evolutionary origins.

  7. The DNA sequence and biology of human chromosome 19

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grimwood, J; Gordon, L A; Olsen, A; Terry, A; Schmutz, J; Lamerdin, J; Hellsten, U; Goodstein, D; Couronne, O; Tran-Gyamfi, M

    2004-04-06

    Chromosome 19 has the highest gene density of all human chromosomes, more than double the genome-wide average. The large clustered gene families, corresponding high GC content, CpG islands and density of repetitive DNA indicate a chromosome rich in biological and evolutionary significance. Here we describe 55.8 million base pairs of highly accurate finished sequence representing 99.9% of the euchromatin portion of the chromosome. Manual curation of gene loci reveals 1,461 protein-coding genes and 321 pseudogenes. Among these are genes directly implicated in Mendelian disorders, including familial hypercholesterolemia and insulin-resistant diabetes. Nearly one quarter of these genes belong to tandemly arranged families, encompassing more than 25% of the chromosome. Comparative analyses show a fascinating picture of conservation and divergence, revealing large blocks of gene orthology with rodents, scattered regions with more recent gene family expansions and deletions, and segments of coding and non-coding conservation with the distant fish species Takifugu.

  8. The DNA sequence and biology of human chromosome 19

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grimwood, Jane; Gordon, Laurie A.; Olsen, Anne; Terry, Astrid; Schmutz, Jeremy; Lamerdin, Jane; Hellsten, Uffe; Goodstein, David; Couronne, Olivier; Tran-Gyamfi, Mary; Aerts, Andrea; Altherr, Michael; Ashworth, Linda; Bajorek, Eva; Black, Stacey; Branscomb, Elbert; Caenepeel, Sean; Carrano, Anthony; Caoile, Chenier; Chan, Yee Man; Christensen, Mari; Cleland, Catherine A.; Copeland, Alex; Dalin, Eileen; Dehal, Paramvir; Denys, Mirian; Detter, John C.; Escobar, Julio; Flowers, Dave; Fotopulos, Dea; Garcia, Carmen; Georgescu, Anca M.; Glavina, Tijana; Gomez, Maria; Gonzales, Eldelyn; Groza, Matthew; Hammon, Nancy; Hawkins, Trevor; Haydu, Lauren; Ho, Issac; Huang, Wayne; Israni, Sanjay; Jett, Jamie; Kadner, Kristen; Kimball, Heather; Kobayashi, Arthur; Larionov, Vladimer; Leem, Sun-Hee; Lopez, Frederick; Lou, Yunian; Lowry, Steve; Malfatti, Stephanie; Martinez, Diego; McCready, Paula; Medina, Catherine; Morgan, Jenna; Nelson, Kathryn; Nolan, Matt; Ovcharenko, Ivan; Pitluck, Sam; Pollard, Martin; Popkie, Anthony P.; Predki, Paul; Quan, Glenda; Ramirez, Lucia; Rash, Sam; Retterer, James; Rodriguez, Alex; Rogers, Stephanine; Salamov, Asaf; Salazar, Angelica; She, Xinwei; Smith, Doug; Slezak, Tom; Solovyev, Victor; Thayer, Nina; Tice, Hope; Tsai, Ming; Ustaszewska, Anna; Vo, Nu; Wagner, Mark; Wheeler, Jeremy; Wu, Kevin; Xie, Gary; Yang, Joan; Dubchak, Inna; Furey, Terrence S.; DeJong, Pieter; Dickson, Mark; Gordon, David; Eichler, Evan E.; Pennacchio, Len A.; Richardson, Paul; Stubbs, Lisa; Rokhsar, Daniel S.; Myers, Richard M.; Rubin, Edward M.; Lucas, Susan M.

    2003-09-15

    Chromosome 19 has the highest gene density of all human chromosomes, more than double the genome-wide average. The large clustered gene families, corresponding high G1C content, CpG islands and density of repetitive DNA indicate a chromosome rich in biological and evolutionary significance. Here we describe 55.8 million base pairs of highly accurate finished sequence representing 99.9 percent of the euchromatin portion of the chromosome. Manual curation of gene loci reveals 1,461 protein-coding genes and 321 pseudogenes. Among these are genes directly implicated in mendelian disorders, including familial hypercholesterolaemia and insulin-resistant diabetes. Nearly one-quarter of these genes belong to tandemly arranged families, encompassing more than 25 percent of the chromosome. Comparative analyses show a fascinating picture of conservation and divergence, revealing large blocks of gene orthology with rodents, scattered regions with more recent gene family expansions and deletions, a nd segments of coding and non-coding conservation with the distant fish species Takifugu.

  9. The origins of the Acheulean: past and present perspectives on a major transition in human evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de la Torre, Ignacio

    2016-07-01

    The emergence of the Acheulean from the earlier Oldowan constitutes a major transition in human evolution, the theme of this special issue. This paper discusses the evidence for the origins of the Acheulean, a cornerstone in the history of human technology, from two perspectives; firstly, a review of the history of investigations on Acheulean research is presented. This approach introduces the evolution of theories throughout the development of the discipline, and reviews the way in which cumulative knowledge led to the prevalent explanatory framework for the emergence of the Acheulean. The second part presents the current state of the art in Acheulean origins research, and reviews the hard evidence for the appearance of this technology in Africa around 1.7 Ma, and its significance for the evolutionary history of Homo erectusThis article is part of the themed issue 'Major transitions in human evolution'.

  10. Human development I: twenty fundamental problems of biology, medicine, and neuro-psychology related to biological information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermansen, Tyge Dahl; Ventegodt, Søren; Rald, Erik; Clausen, Birgitte; Nielsen, Maj Lyck; Merrick, Joav

    2006-07-06

    In a new series of papers, we address a number of unsolved problems in biology today. First of all, the unsolved enigma concerning how the differentiation from a single zygote to an adult individual happens has been object for severe research for decades. By uncovering a new holistic biological paradigm that introduces an energetic-informational interpretation of reality as a new way to experience biology, these papers will try to solve the problems connected with the events of biological ontogenesis involving a fractal hierarchy, from a single cell to the function of the human brain. The problems discussed are interpreted within the frames of a universe of roomy fractal structures containing energetic patterns that are able to deliver biological information. We think biological organization is guided by energetic changes on the level of quantum mechanics, interacting with the intention that again guides the energetic conformation of the fractal structures to gain disorders or healthiness. Furthermore, we introduce two new concepts: "metamorphous top down" evolution and "adult human metamorphosis". The first is a new evolutionary theory involving metamorphosis as a main concept of evolution. The last is tightly linked to the evolutionary principle and explains how human self-recovery is governed. Other subjects of special interest that we shall look deeper into are the immunological self-nonself discrimination, the structure and function of the human brain, the etiology and salutogenesis of mental and somatic diseases, and the structure of the consciousness of a human being. We shall criticize Szentagothai's model for the modulated structure of the human cerebral cortex and Jerne's theory of the immunological regulatory anti-idiotypic network.

  11. Human development I: Twenty Fundamental Problems of Biology, Medicine, and Neuro-Psychology Related to Biological Information

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tyge Dahl Hermansen

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available In a new series of papers, we address a number of unsolved problems in biology today. First of all, the unsolved enigma concerning how the differentiation from a single zygote to an adult individual happens has been object for severe research for decades. By uncovering a new holistic biological paradigm that introduces an energetic-informational interpretation of reality as a new way to experience biology, these papers will try to solve the problems connected with the events of biological ontogenesis involving a fractal hierarchy, from a single cell to the function of the human brain. The problems discussed are interpreted within the frames of a universe of roomy fractal structures containing energetic patterns that are able to deliver biological information. We think biological organization is guided by energetic changes on the level of quantum mechanics, interacting with the intention that again guides the energetic conformation of the fractal structures to gain disorders or healthiness. Furthermore, we introduce two new concepts: “metamorphous top down” evolution and “adult human metamorphosis”. The first is a new evolutionary theory involving metamorphosis as a main concept of evolution. The last is tightly linked to the evolutionary principle and explains how human self-recovery is governed. Other subjects of special interest that we shall look deeper into are the immunological self-nonself discrimination, the structure and function of the human brain, the etiology and salutogenesis of mental and somatic diseases, and the structure of the consciousness of a human being. We shall criticize Szentagothai’s model for the modulated structure of the human cerebral cortex and Jerne’s theory of the immunological regulatory anti-idiotypic network.

  12. A human haploid gene trap collection to study lncRNAs with unusual RNA biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kornienko, Aleksandra E; Vlatkovic, Irena; Neesen, Jürgen; Barlow, Denise P; Pauler, Florian M

    2016-01-01

    Many thousand long non-coding (lnc) RNAs are mapped in the human genome. Time consuming studies using reverse genetic approaches by post-transcriptional knock-down or genetic modification of the locus demonstrated diverse biological functions for a few of these transcripts. The Human Gene Trap Mutant Collection in haploid KBM7 cells is a ready-to-use tool for studying protein-coding gene function. As lncRNAs show remarkable differences in RNA biology compared to protein-coding genes, it is unclear if this gene trap collection is useful for functional analysis of lncRNAs. Here we use the uncharacterized LOC100288798 lncRNA as a model to answer this question. Using public RNA-seq data we show that LOC100288798 is ubiquitously expressed, but inefficiently spliced. The minor spliced LOC100288798 isoforms are exported to the cytoplasm, whereas the major unspliced isoform is nuclear localized. This shows that LOC100288798 RNA biology differs markedly from typical mRNAs. De novo assembly from RNA-seq data suggests that LOC100288798 extends 289kb beyond its annotated 3' end and overlaps the downstream SLC38A4 gene. Three cell lines with independent gene trap insertions in LOC100288798 were available from the KBM7 gene trap collection. RT-qPCR and RNA-seq confirmed successful lncRNA truncation and its extended length. Expression analysis from RNA-seq data shows significant deregulation of 41 protein-coding genes upon LOC100288798 truncation. Our data shows that gene trap collections in human haploid cell lines are useful tools to study lncRNAs, and identifies the previously uncharacterized LOC100288798 as a potential gene regulator.

  13. Ethics and methods for biological rhythm research on animals and human beings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portaluppi, Francesco; Smolensky, Michael H; Touitou, Yvan

    2010-10-01

    This article updates the ethical standards and methods for the conduct of high-quality animal and human biological rhythm research, which should be especially useful for new investigators of the rhythms of life. The editors of Chronobiology International adhere to and endorse the Code of Conduct and Best Practice Guidelines of the Committee On Publication Ethics (COPE), which encourages communication of such updates at regular intervals in the journal. The journal accepts papers representing original work, no part of which was previously submitted for publication elsewhere, except as brief abstracts, as well as in-depth reviews. The majority of research papers published in Chronobiology International entails animal and human investigations. The editors and readers of the journal expect authors of submitted manuscripts to have made an important contribution to the research of biological rhythms and related phenomena using ethical methods/procedures and unbiased, accurate, and honest reporting of findings. Authors of scientific papers are required to declare all potential conflicts of interest. The journal and its editors endorse compliance of investigators to the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals of the Institute for Laboratory Animal Research of the National Research Council, relating to the conduct of ethical research on laboratory and other animals, and the principles of the Declaration of Helsinki of the World Medical Association, relating to the conduct of ethical research on human beings. The peer review of manuscripts by Chronobiology International thus includes judgment as to whether or not the protocols and methods conform to ethical standards. Authors are expected to show mastery of the basic methods and procedures of biological rhythm research and proper statistical assessment of data, including the appropriate application of time series data analyses, as briefly reviewed in this article. The journal editors strive to consistently achieve

  14. Magnetic measurements on human erythrocytes: Normal, beta thalassemia major, and sickle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakhnini, Lama

    2003-05-01

    In this article magnetic measurements were made on human erythrocytes at different hemoglobin states (normal and reduced hemoglobin). Different blood samples: normal, beta thalassemia major, and sickle were studied. Beta thalassemia major and sickle samples were taken from patients receiving lifelong blood transfusion treatment. All samples examined exhibited diamagnetic behavior. Beta thalassemia major and sickle samples showed higher diamagnetic susceptibilities than that for the normal, which was attributed to the increase of membrane to hemoglobin volume ratio of the abnormal cells. Magnetic measurements showed that the erythrocytes in the reduced state showed less diamagnetic response in comparison with erythrocytes in the normal state. Analysis of the paramagnetic component of magnetization curves gave an effective magnetic moment of μeff=7.6 μB per reduced hemoglobin molecule. The same procedure was applied to sickle and beta thalassemia major samples and values for μeff were found to be comparable to that of the normal erythrocytes.

  15. Humans have already increased the risk of major disruptions to Pacific rainfall

    Science.gov (United States)

    Power, Scott B.; Delage, François P. D.; Chung, Christine T. Y.; Ye, Hua; Murphy, Bradley F.

    2017-02-01

    Intermittent disruptions to rainfall patterns and intensity over the Pacific Ocean lasting up to ~ 1 year have major impacts on severe weather, agricultural production, ecosystems, and disease within the Pacific, and in many countries beyond. The frequency with which major disruptions to Pacific rainfall occur has been projected to increase over the 21st century, in response to global warming caused by large 21st century greenhouse gas emissions. Here we use the latest generation of climate models to show that humans may have contributed to the major disruption that occurred in the real world during the late 20th century. We demonstrate that although marked and sustained reductions in 21st century anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions can greatly moderate the likelihood of major disruption, elevated risk of occurrence appears locked in now, and for at least the remainder of the 21st century.

  16. Identification of a major phosphopeptide in human tristetraprolin by phosphopeptide mapping and mass spectrometry.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heping Cao

    Full Text Available Tristetraprolin/zinc finger protein 36 (TTP/ZFP36 binds and destabilizes some pro-inflammatory cytokine mRNAs. TTP-deficient mice develop a profound inflammatory syndrome due to excessive production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. TTP expression is induced by various factors including insulin and extracts from cinnamon and green tea. TTP is highly phosphorylated in vivo and is a substrate for several protein kinases. Multiple phosphorylation sites are identified in human TTP, but it is difficult to assign major vs. minor phosphorylation sites. This study aimed to generate additional information on TTP phosphorylation using phosphopeptide mapping and mass spectrometry (MS. Wild-type and site-directed mutant TTP proteins were expressed in transfected human cells followed by in vivo radiolabeling with [32P]-orthophosphate. Histidine-tagged TTP proteins were purified with Ni-NTA affinity beads and digested with trypsin and lysyl endopeptidase. The digested peptides were separated by C18 column with high performance liquid chromatography. Wild-type and all mutant TTP proteins were localized in the cytosol, phosphorylated extensively in vivo and capable of binding to ARE-containing RNA probes. Mutant TTP with S90 and S93 mutations resulted in the disappearance of a major phosphopeptide peak. Mutant TTP with an S197 mutation resulted in another major phosphopeptide peak being eluted earlier than the wild-type. Additional mutations at S186, S296 and T271 exhibited little effect on phosphopeptide profiles. MS analysis identified the peptide that was missing in the S90 and S93 mutant protein as LGPELSPSPTSPTATSTTPSR (corresponding to amino acid residues 83-103 of human TTP. MS also identified a major phosphopeptide associated with the first zinc-finger region. These analyses suggest that the tryptic peptide containing S90 and S93 is a major phosphopeptide in human TTP.

  17. Purification and characterization of a major human Pneumocystis carinii surface antigen

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lundgren, B; Lipschik, G Y; Kovacs, J A

    1991-01-01

    with zymolyase followed by molecular sieve and ion exchange chromatography. The native proteins had an apparent mol wt of 290,000 or greater, based on molecular sieve studies as well as cross-linking studies. Both proteins were glycoproteins; treatment with endoglycosidase H resulted in a 9% decrease in mol wt......Previous studies of Pneumocystis carinii have identified the major surface antigen of rat and human isolates as proteins of 116,000 and 95,000 mol wt, respectively, that are antigenically not identical. In this study both rat and human P. carinii proteins were purified by solubilization....... The carbohydrate composition of the rat P. carinii glycoprotein was distinct from the human isolate; glucose, mannose, galactose, and glucosamine occurred in approximately equimolar ratios in the human P. carinii protein, whereas glucose and mannose were the predominant sugars of the rat P. carinii protein...

  18. Human parvovirus B19 in patients with beta thalassemia major from Tehran, Iran.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arabzadeh, Seyed Ali Mohammad; Alizadeh, Farideh; Tavakoli, Ahmad; Mollaei, Hamidreza; Bokharaei-Salim, Farah; Karimi, Gharib; Farahmand, Mohammad; Mortazavi, Helya Sadat; Monavari, Seyed Hamidreza

    2017-03-01

    Due to the tropism of human parvovirus B19 to erythroid progenitor cells, infection in patients with an underlying hemolytic disorder such as beta-thalassemia major leads to suppression of erythrocyte formation, referred to as transient aplasia crisis (TAC), which may be life-threatening. We investigated the prevalence of parvovirus B19 among patients with beta thalassemia major attending the Zafar Adult Thalassemia Clinic in Tehran, Iran. This cross-sectional study was performed to determine the presence of parvovirus B19 DNA in blood samples and parvovirus B19 genotypes in plasma samples of patients with thalassemia major. The population consisted of 150 patients with beta-thalassemia major who attended the Zafar clinic in Tehran. Specimens were studied using a real-time polymerase chain reaction assay. The prevalence of parvovirus B19 in our study population was 4%. Of 150 patients with thalassemia, six (4%) were positive for B19 DNA. There was no significant correlation between blood transfusion frequency and B19 DNA positivity. Finally, phylogenetic analysis of human parvovirus B19 revealed genotype I in these six patients. In this study, acute B19 infections were detected in patients with beta thalassemia major. Screening of such high-risk groups can considerably reduce the incidence and prevalence of B19 infection; thus, screening is required for epidemiologic surveillance and disease-prevention measures.

  19. Human parvovirus B19 in patients with beta thalassemia major from Tehran, Iran

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arabzadeh, Seyed Ali Mohammad; Alizadeh, Farideh; Tavakoli, Ahmad; Mollaei, Hamidreza; Bokharaei-Salim, Farah; Karimi, Gharib; Farahmand, Mohammad; Mortazavi, Helya Sadat

    2017-01-01

    Background Due to the tropism of human parvovirus B19 to erythroid progenitor cells, infection in patients with an underlying hemolytic disorder such as beta-thalassemia major leads to suppression of erythrocyte formation, referred to as transient aplasia crisis (TAC), which may be life-threatening. We investigated the prevalence of parvovirus B19 among patients with beta thalassemia major attending the Zafar Adult Thalassemia Clinic in Tehran, Iran. Methods This cross-sectional study was performed to determine the presence of parvovirus B19 DNA in blood samples and parvovirus B19 genotypes in plasma samples of patients with thalassemia major. The population consisted of 150 patients with beta-thalassemia major who attended the Zafar clinic in Tehran. Specimens were studied using a real-time polymerase chain reaction assay. Results The prevalence of parvovirus B19 in our study population was 4%. Of 150 patients with thalassemia, six (4%) were positive for B19 DNA. There was no significant correlation between blood transfusion frequency and B19 DNA positivity. Finally, phylogenetic analysis of human parvovirus B19 revealed genotype I in these six patients. Conclusion In this study, acute B19 infections were detected in patients with beta thalassemia major. Screening of such high-risk groups can considerably reduce the incidence and prevalence of B19 infection; thus, screening is required for epidemiologic surveillance and disease-prevention measures.

  20. Roles of host and viral microRNAs in human cytomegalovirus biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhuruvasan, Kavitha; Sivasubramanian, Geetha; Pellett, Philip E.

    2011-01-01

    Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) has a relatively large and complex genome, a protracted lytic replication cycle, and employs a strategy of replicational latency as part of its lifelong persistence in the infected host. An important form of gene regulation in plants and animals revolves around a type of small RNA known as microRNA (miRNA). miRNAs can serve as major regulators of key developmental pathways, as well as provide subtle forms of regulatory control. The human genome encodes over 900 miRNAs, and miRNAs are also encoded by some viruses, including HCMV, which encodes at least 14 miRNAs. Some of the HCMV miRNAs are known to target both viral and cellular genes, including important immunomodulators. In addition to expressing their own miRNAs, infections with some viruses, including HCMV, can result in changes in the expression of cellular miRNAs that benefit virus replication. In this review, we summarize the connections between miRNAs and HCMV biology. We describe the nature of miRNA genes, miRNA biogenesis and modes of action, methods for studying miRNAs, HCMV-encoded miRNAs, effects of HCMV infection on cellular miRNA expression, roles of miRNAs in HCMV biology, and possible HCMV-related diagnostic and therapeutic applications of miRNAs. PMID:20969901

  1. Believe it or not: Moving non-biological stimuli believed to have human origin can be represented as human movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gowen, E; Bolton, E; Poliakoff, E

    2016-01-01

    Does our brain treat non-biological movements (e.g. moving abstract shapes or robots) in the same way as human movements? The current work tested whether the movement of a non-biological rectangular object, believed to be based on a human action is represented within the observer's motor system. A novel visuomotor priming task was designed to pit true imitative compatibility, due to human action representation against more general stimulus response compatibility that has confounded previous belief experiments. Stimulus response compatibility effects were found for the object. However, imitative compatibility was found when participants repeated the object task with the belief that the object was based on a human finger movement, and when they performed the task viewing a real human hand. These results provide the first demonstration that non-biological stimuli can be represented as a human movement if they are believed to have human agency and have implications for interactions with technology and robots.

  2. Structural biology of human H3K9 methyltransferases.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hong Wu

    Full Text Available UNLABELLED: SET domain methyltransferases deposit methyl marks on specific histone tail lysine residues and play a major role in epigenetic regulation of gene transcription. We solved the structures of the catalytic domains of GLP, G9a, Suv39H2 and PRDM2, four of the eight known human H3K9 methyltransferases in their apo conformation or in complex with the methyl donating cofactor, and peptide substrates. We analyzed the structural determinants for methylation state specificity, and designed a G9a mutant able to tri-methylate H3K9. We show that the I-SET domain acts as a rigid docking platform, while induced-fit of the Post-SET domain is necessary to achieve a catalytically competent conformation. We also propose a model where long-range electrostatics bring enzyme and histone substrate together, while the presence of an arginine upstream of the target lysine is critical for binding and specificity. ENHANCED VERSION: This article can also be viewed as an enhanced version in which the text of the article is integrated with interactive 3D representations and animated transitions. Please note that a web plugin is required to access this enhanced functionality. Instructions for the installation and use of the web plugin are available in Text S1.

  3. Biologic effect of a hybrid preparation of human chorionic gonadotropin in human subjects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosemberg, E

    1982-01-01

    Alpha and beta-hCG subunits were recombined generating a hybrid hCG preparation (AB1ER-CR-2XY) which met the required specifications of a pharmaceutical product. The biologic activity contained in each vial of AB1ER-CR-2XY was equivalent to 10 000IU of hCG-IS. This preparation was given as a single dose of 10 000IU by the i.m. route to four female subjects presenting unexplained infertility. The hCG hybrid was demonstrated to effect gonadal stimulation in humans.

  4. A Response to "BIO 2010: Transforming Undergraduate Education for Future Research Biologists," from the Perspective of the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Major Program at Kenyon College

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slonczewski, Joan L.; Marusak, Rosemary

    2004-01-01

    The National Research Council completed a major study of undergraduate biology education, "BIO 2010-Transforming Undergraduate Education For Future Research Biologists (BIO 2010)," funded by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the National Institutes of Health. The "BIO 2010" report recommends that biology pedagogy should use an…

  5. Chemokine receptors and their crucial role in human immunodeficiency virus infection: major breakthroughs in HIV research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristiansen, T B; Knudsen, T B; Eugen-Olsen, J

    1998-01-01

    Within the last three years, major progress in the understanding of acquired immune deficiency syndrome pathogenesis has been achieved. The discovery that human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), in addition to the CD4 receptor, requires the presence of a coreceptor in order to infect cells has led...... to a series of breakthroughs in HIV research and knowledge. These include an increased understanding of viral entry, a connection of viral phenotype to specific coreceptor use, and an unequivocal linkage of a single human gene to host susceptibility. All in all these achievements provide a number of promising...

  6. Evolution of the human ASPM gene, a major determinant of brain size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jianzhi

    2003-12-01

    The size of human brain tripled over a period of approximately 2 million years (MY) that ended 0.2-0.4 MY ago. This evolutionary expansion is believed to be important to the emergence of human language and other high-order cognitive functions, yet its genetic basis remains unknown. An evolutionary analysis of genes controlling brain development may shed light on it. ASPM (abnormal spindle-like microcephaly associated) is one of such genes, as nonsense mutations lead to primary microcephaly, a human disease characterized by a 70% reduction in brain size. Here I provide evidence suggesting that human ASPM went through an episode of accelerated sequence evolution by positive Darwinian selection after the split of humans and chimpanzees but before the separation of modern non-Africans from Africans. Because positive selection acts on a gene only when the gene function is altered and the organismal fitness is increased, my results suggest that adaptive functional modifications occurred in human ASPM and that it may be a major genetic component underlying the evolution of the human brain.

  7. mtDNA variation predicts population size in humans and reveals a major Southern Asian chapter in human prehistory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atkinson, Quentin D; Gray, Russell D; Drummond, Alexei J

    2008-02-01

    The relative timing and size of regional human population growth following our expansion from Africa remain unknown. Human mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) diversity carries a legacy of our population history. Given a set of sequences, we can use coalescent theory to estimate past population size through time and draw inferences about human population history. However, recent work has challenged the validity of using mtDNA diversity to infer species population sizes. Here we use Bayesian coalescent inference methods, together with a global data set of 357 human mtDNA coding-region sequences, to infer human population sizes through time across 8 major geographic regions. Our estimates of relative population sizes show remarkable concordance with the contemporary regional distribution of humans across Africa, Eurasia, and the Americas, indicating that mtDNA diversity is a good predictor of population size in humans. Plots of population size through time show slow growth in sub-Saharan Africa beginning 143-193 kya, followed by a rapid expansion into Eurasia after the emergence of the first non-African mtDNA lineages 50-70 kya. Outside Africa, the earliest and fastest growth is inferred in Southern Asia approximately 52 kya, followed by a succession of growth phases in Northern and Central Asia (approximately 49 kya), Australia (approximately 48 kya), Europe (approximately 42 kya), the Middle East and North Africa (approximately 40 kya), New Guinea (approximately 39 kya), the Americas (approximately 18 kya), and a second expansion in Europe (approximately 10-15 kya). Comparisons of relative regional population sizes through time suggest that between approximately 45 and 20 kya most of humanity lived in Southern Asia. These findings not only support the use of mtDNA data for estimating human population size but also provide a unique picture of human prehistory and demonstrate the importance of Southern Asia to our recent evolutionary past.

  8. Human Dopamine Receptors Interaction Network (DRIN): a systems biology perspective on topology, stability and functionality of the network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Podder, Avijit; Jatana, Nidhi; Latha, N

    2014-09-21

    Dopamine receptors (DR) are one of the major neurotransmitter receptors present in human brain. Malfunctioning of these receptors is well established to trigger many neurological and psychiatric disorders. Taking into consideration that proteins function collectively in a network for most of the biological processes, the present study is aimed to depict the interactions between all dopamine receptors following a systems biology approach. To capture comprehensive interactions of candidate proteins associated with human dopamine receptors, we performed a protein-protein interaction network (PPIN) analysis of all five receptors and their protein partners by mapping them into human interactome and constructed a human Dopamine Receptors Interaction Network (DRIN). We explored the topology of dopamine receptors as molecular network, revealing their characteristics and the role of central network elements. More to the point, a sub-network analysis was done to determine major functional clusters in human DRIN that govern key neurological pathways. Besides, interacting proteins in a pathway were characterized and prioritized based on their affinity for utmost drug molecules. The vulnerability of different networks to the dysfunction of diverse combination of components was estimated under random and direct attack scenarios. To the best of our knowledge, the current study is unique to put all five dopamine receptors together in a common interaction network and to understand the functionality of interacting proteins collectively. Our study pinpointed distinctive topological and functional properties of human dopamine receptors that have helped in identifying potential therapeutic drug targets in the dopamine interaction network.

  9. Evaluation of an ethnopharmacologically selected Bhutanese medicinal plants for their major classes of phytochemicals and biological activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wangchuk, Phurpa; Keller, Paul A; Pyne, Stephen G; Taweechotipatr, Malai; Tonsomboon, Aunchalee; Rattanajak, Roonglawan; Kamchonwongpaisan, Sumalee

    2011-09-01

    As many as 229 medicinal plants have been currently used in the Bhutanese Traditional Medicine (BTM) as a chief ingredient of polyherbal formulations and these plants have been individually indicated for treating various types of infections including malaria, tumor, and microbial. We have focused our study only on seven species of these plants. We aim to evaluate the antiplasmodial, antimicrobial, anti-Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and cytotoxicity activities of the seven medicinal plants of Bhutan selected using an ethno-directed bio-rational approach. This study creates a scientific basis for their use in the BTM and gives foundation for further phytochemical and biological evaluations which can result in the discovery of new drug lead compounds. A three stage process was conducted which consisted of: (1) an assessment of a pharmacopoeia and a formulary book of the BTM for their mode of plant uses; (2) selecting 25 anti-infective medicinal plants based on the five established criteria, collecting them, and screening for their major classes of phytochemicals using appropriate test protocols; and (3) finally analyzing the crude extracts of the seven medicinal plants, using the standard test protocols, for their antiplasmodial, antimicrobial, anti-Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and cytotoxicity activities as directed by the ethnopharmacological uses of each plant. Out of 25 medicinal plants screened for their major classes of phytochemicals, the majority contained tannins, alkaloids and flavonoids. Out of the seven plant species investigated for their biological activities, all seven of them exhibited mild antimicrobial properties, five plants gave significant in vitro antiplasmodial activities, two plants gave moderate anti-Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense activity, and one plant showed mild cytotoxicity. Meconopsis simplicifolia showed the highest antiplasmodial activity with IC(50) values of 0.40 μg/ml against TM4/8.2 strain (a wild type chloroquine and

  10. The Science and Issues of Human DNA Polymoprhisms: A Training Workshop for High School Biology Teachers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    David. A Micklos

    2006-10-30

    This project achieved its goal of implementing a nationwide training program to introduce high school biology teachers to the key uses and societal implications of human DNA polymorphisms. The 2.5-day workshop introduced high school biology faculty to a laboratory-based unit on human DNA polymorphisms – which provides a uniquely personal perspective on the science and Ethical, Legal and Social Implications (ELSI) of the Human Genome Project. As proposed, 12 workshops were conducted at venues across the United States. The workshops were attended by 256 high school faculty, exceeding proposed attendance of 240 by 7%. Each workshop mixed theoretical, laboratory, and computer work with practical and ethical implications. Program participants learned simplified lab techniques for amplifying three types of chromosomal polymorphisms: an Alu insertion (PV92), a VNTR (pMCT118/D1S80), and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the mitochondrial control region. These polymorphisms illustrate the use of DNA variations in disease diagnosis, forensic biology, and identity testing - and provide a starting point for discussing the uses and potential abuses of genetic technology. Participants also learned how to use their Alu and mitochondrial data as an entrée to human population genetics and evolution. Our work to simplify lab techniques for amplifying human DNA polymorphisms in educational settings culminated with the release in 1998 of three Advanced Technology (AT) PCR kits by Carolina Biological Supply Company, the nation’s oldest educational science supplier. The kits use a simple 30-minute method to isolate template DNA from hair sheaths or buccal cells and streamlined PCR chemistry based on Pharmacia Ready-To-Go Beads, which incorporate Taq polymerase, deoxynucleotide triphosphates, and buffer in a freeze-dried pellet. These kits have greatly simplified teacher implementation of human PCR labs, and their use is growing at a rapid pace. Sales of human polymorphism

  11. The Science and Issues of Human DNA Polymorphisms: A Training Workshop for High School Biology Teachers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Micklos, David A.

    2006-10-30

    This project achieved its goal of implementing a nationwide training program to introduce high school biology teachers to the key uses and societal implications of human DNA polymorphisms. The 2.5-day workshop introduced high school biology faculty to a laboratory-based unit on human DNA polymorphisms â which provides a uniquely personal perspective on the science and Ethical, Legal and Social Implications (ELSI) of the Human Genome Project. As proposed, 12 workshops were conducted at venues across the United States. The workshops were attended by 256 high school faculty, exceeding proposed attendance of 240 by 7%. Each workshop mixed theoretical, laboratory, and computer work with practical and ethical implications. Program participants learned simplified lab techniques for amplifying three types of chromosomal polymorphisms: an Alu insertion (PV92), a VNTR (pMCT118/D1S80), and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the mitochondrial control region. These polymorphisms illustrate the use of DNA variations in disease diagnosis, forensic biology, and identity testing - and provide a starting point for discussing the uses and potential abuses of genetic technology. Participants also learned how to use their Alu and mitochondrial data as an entrée to human population genetics and evolution. Our work to simplify lab techniques for amplifying human DNA polymorphisms in educational settings culminated with the release in 1998 of three Advanced Technology (AT) PCR kits by Carolina Biological Supply Company, the nationâÂÂs oldest educational science supplier. The kits use a simple 30-minute method to isolate template DNA from hair sheaths or buccal cells and streamlined PCR chemistry based on Pharmacia Ready-To-Go Beads, which incorporate Taq polymerase, deoxynucleotide triphosphates, and buffer in a freeze-dried pellet. These kits have greatly simplified teacher implementation of human PCR labs, and their use is growing at a rapid pace. Sales of human

  12. Human Ageing Genomic Resources: integrated databases and tools for the biology and genetics of ageing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tacutu, Robi; Craig, Thomas; Budovsky, Arie; Wuttke, Daniel; Lehmann, Gilad; Taranukha, Dmitri; Costa, Joana; Fraifeld, Vadim E; de Magalhães, João Pedro

    2013-01-01

    The Human Ageing Genomic Resources (HAGR, http://genomics.senescence.info) is a freely available online collection of research databases and tools for the biology and genetics of ageing. HAGR features now several databases with high-quality manually curated data: (i) GenAge, a database of genes associated with ageing in humans and model organisms; (ii) AnAge, an extensive collection of longevity records and complementary traits for >4000 vertebrate species; and (iii) GenDR, a newly incorporated database, containing both gene mutations that interfere with dietary restriction-mediated lifespan extension and consistent gene expression changes induced by dietary restriction. Since its creation about 10 years ago, major efforts have been undertaken to maintain the quality of data in HAGR, while further continuing to develop, improve and extend it. This article briefly describes the content of HAGR and details the major updates since its previous publications, in terms of both structure and content. The completely redesigned interface, more intuitive and more integrative of HAGR resources, is also presented. Altogether, we hope that through its improvements, the current version of HAGR will continue to provide users with the most comprehensive and accessible resources available today in the field of biogerontology.

  13. Human Ageing Genomic Resources: Integrated databases and tools for the biology and genetics of ageing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tacutu, Robi; Craig, Thomas; Budovsky, Arie; Wuttke, Daniel; Lehmann, Gilad; Taranukha, Dmitri; Costa, Joana; Fraifeld, Vadim E.; de Magalhães, João Pedro

    2013-01-01

    The Human Ageing Genomic Resources (HAGR, http://genomics.senescence.info) is a freely available online collection of research databases and tools for the biology and genetics of ageing. HAGR features now several databases with high-quality manually curated data: (i) GenAge, a database of genes associated with ageing in humans and model organisms; (ii) AnAge, an extensive collection of longevity records and complementary traits for >4000 vertebrate species; and (iii) GenDR, a newly incorporated database, containing both gene mutations that interfere with dietary restriction-mediated lifespan extension and consistent gene expression changes induced by dietary restriction. Since its creation about 10 years ago, major efforts have been undertaken to maintain the quality of data in HAGR, while further continuing to develop, improve and extend it. This article briefly describes the content of HAGR and details the major updates since its previous publications, in terms of both structure and content. The completely redesigned interface, more intuitive and more integrative of HAGR resources, is also presented. Altogether, we hope that through its improvements, the current version of HAGR will continue to provide users with the most comprehensive and accessible resources available today in the field of biogerontology. PMID:23193293

  14. The Math-Biology Values Instrument: Development of a Tool to Measure Life Science Majors' Task Values of Using Math in the Context of Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, Sarah E.; Runyon, Christopher; Aikens, Melissa L.

    2017-01-01

    In response to calls to improve the quantitative training of undergraduate biology students, there have been increased efforts to better integrate math into biology curricula. One challenge of such efforts is negative student attitudes toward math, which are thought to be particularly prevalent among biology students. According to theory,…

  15. Using student motivation to design groups in a non-majors biology course for team-based collaborative learning: Impacts on knowledge, views, attitudes, and perceptions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walters, Kristi L.

    The importance of student motivation and its connection to other learning variables (i.e., attitudes, knowledge, persistence, attendance) is well established. Collaborative work at the undergraduate level has been recognized as a valuable tool in large courses. However, motivation and collaborative group work have rarely been combined. This project utilized student motivation to learn biology to place non-major biology undergraduates in collaborative learning groups at East Carolina University, a mid-sized southeastern American university, to determine the effects of this construct on student learning. A pre-test measuring motivation to learn biology, attitudes toward biology, perceptions of biology and biologists, views of science, and content knowledge was administered. A similar post-test followed as part of the final exam. Two sections of the same introductory biology course (n = 312) were used and students were divided into homogeneous and heterogeneous groups (based on their motivation score). The heterogeneous groups (n = 32) consisted of a mixture of different motivation levels, while the homogeneous groups (n = 32) were organized into teams with similar motivation scores using tiers of high-, middle-, and low-level participants. Data analysis determined mixed perceptions of biology and biologists. These include the perceptions biology was less intriguing, less relevant, less practical, less ethical, and less understandable. Biologists were perceived as being neat and slightly intelligent, but not very altruistic, humane, ethical, logical, honest, or moral. Content knowledge scores more than doubled from pre- to post-test. Half of the items measuring views of science were not statistically significantly different from pre- to post-test. Many of the factors for attitudes toward biology became more agreeable from pre- to post-test. Correlations between motivation scores, participation levels, attendance rates, and final course grades were examined at both the

  16. Simultaneous gene expression profiling in human macrophages infected with Leishmania major parasites using SAGE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smandi Sondos

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Leishmania (L are intracellular protozoan parasites that are able to survive and replicate within the harsh and potentially hostile phagolysosomal environment of mammalian mononuclear phagocytes. A complex interplay then takes place between the macrophage (MΦ striving to eliminate the pathogen and the parasite struggling for its own survival. To investigate this host-parasite conflict at the transcriptional level, in the context of monocyte-derived human MΦs (MDM infection by L. major metacyclic promastigotes, the quantitative technique of serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE was used. Results After extracting mRNA from resting human MΦs, Leishmania-infected human MΦs and L. major parasites, three SAGE libraries were constructed and sequenced generating up to 28,173; 57,514 and 33,906 tags respectively (corresponding to 12,946; 23,442 and 9,530 unique tags. Using computational data analysis and direct comparison to 357,888 publicly available experimental human tags, the parasite and the host cell transcriptomes were then simultaneously characterized from the mixed cellular extract, confidently discriminating host from parasite transcripts. This procedure led us to reliably assign 3,814 tags to MΦs' and 3,666 tags to L. major parasites transcripts. We focused on these, showing significant changes in their expression that are likely to be relevant to the pathogenesis of parasite infection: (i human MΦs genes, belonging to key immune response proteins (e.g., IFNγ pathway, S100 and chemokine families and (ii a group of Leishmania genes showing a preferential expression at the parasite's intra-cellular developing stage. Conclusion Dual SAGE transcriptome analysis provided a useful, powerful and accurate approach to discriminating genes of human or parasitic origin in Leishmania-infected human MΦs. The findings presented in this work suggest that the Leishmania parasite modulates key transcripts in human MΦs that may

  17. Humans with chimpanzee-like major histocompatibility complex-specificities control HIV-1 infection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hoof, Ilka; Kesmir, Can; Lund, Ole;

    2008-01-01

    Background: Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecules allow immune surveillance by presenting a snapshot of the intracellular state of a cell to circulating cytotoxic T lymphocytes. The MHC class I alleles of an HIV-1 infected individual strongly influence the level of viremia...... and the progression rate to AIDS. Chimpanzees control HIV-1 viral replication and develop a chronic infection without progressing to AIDS. A similar course of disease is observed in human long-term non-progressors. Objective: To investigate if long-term non-progressors and chimpanzees have functional similarities...... in their MHC class I repertoire. Methods: We compared the specificity of groups of human MHC molecules associated with different levels of viremia in HIV-1 infected individuals with those of chimpanzee. Results and conclusion: We demonstrate that human MHC with control of HIV-1 viral load share binding motifs...

  18. Metabolic adaptation of a human pathogen during chronic infections - a systems biology approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thøgersen, Juliane Charlotte

    by classical molecular biology approaches where genes and reactions typically are investigated in a one to one relationship. This thesis is an example of how mathematical approaches and modeling can facilitate new biologi-­‐ cal understanding and provide new surprising ideas to important biological processes....... modeling to uncover how human pathogens adapt to the human host. Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections in cystic fibrosis patients are used as a model system for under-­‐ standing these adaptation processes. The exploratory systems biology approach facilitates identification of important phenotypes...

  19. Identification of human semiochemicals attractive to the major vectors of onchocerciasis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan M Young

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Entomological indicators are considered key metrics to document the interruption of transmission of Onchocerca volvulus, the etiological agent of human onchocerciasis. Human landing collection is the standard employed for collection of the vectors for this parasite. Recent studies reported the development of traps that have the potential for replacing humans for surveillance of O. volvulus in the vector population. However, the key chemical components of human odor that are attractive to vector black flies have not been identified.Human sweat compounds were analyzed using GC-MS analysis and compounds common to three individuals identified. These common compounds, with others previously identified as attractive to other hematophagous arthropods were evaluated for their ability to stimulate and attract the major onchocerciasis vectors in Africa (Simulium damnosum sensu lato and Latin America (Simulium ochraceum s. l. using electroantennography and a Y tube binary choice assay. Medium chain length carboxylic acids and aldehydes were neurostimulatory for S. damnosum s.l. while S. ochraceum s.l. was stimulated by short chain aliphatic alcohols and aldehydes. Both species were attracted to ammonium bicarbonate and acetophenone. The compounds were shown to be attractive to the relevant vector species in field studies, when incorporated into a formulation that permitted a continuous release of the compound over time and used in concert with previously developed trap platforms.The identification of compounds attractive to the major vectors of O. volvulus will permit the development of optimized traps. Such traps may replace the use of human vector collectors for monitoring the effectiveness of onchocerciasis elimination programs and could find use as a contributing component in an integrated vector control/drug program aimed at eliminating river blindness in Africa.

  20. Identification of Human Semiochemicals Attractive to the Major Vectors of Onchocerciasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Ryan M.; Burkett-Cadena, Nathan D.; McGaha, Tommy W.; Rodriguez-Perez, Mario A.; Toé, Laurent D.; Adeleke, Monsuru A.; Sanfo, Moussa; Soungalo, Traore; Katholi, Charles R.; Noblet, Raymond; Fadamiro, Henry; Torres-Estrada, Jose L.; Salinas-Carmona, Mario C.; Baker, Bill; Unnasch, Thomas R.; Cupp, Eddie W.

    2015-01-01

    Background Entomological indicators are considered key metrics to document the interruption of transmission of Onchocerca volvulus, the etiological agent of human onchocerciasis. Human landing collection is the standard employed for collection of the vectors for this parasite. Recent studies reported the development of traps that have the potential for replacing humans for surveillance of O. volvulus in the vector population. However, the key chemical components of human odor that are attractive to vector black flies have not been identified. Methodology/Principal Findings Human sweat compounds were analyzed using GC-MS analysis and compounds common to three individuals identified. These common compounds, with others previously identified as attractive to other hematophagous arthropods were evaluated for their ability to stimulate and attract the major onchocerciasis vectors in Africa (Simulium damnosum sensu lato) and Latin America (Simulium ochraceum s. l.) using electroantennography and a Y tube binary choice assay. Medium chain length carboxylic acids and aldehydes were neurostimulatory for S. damnosum s.l. while S. ochraceum s.l. was stimulated by short chain aliphatic alcohols and aldehydes. Both species were attracted to ammonium bicarbonate and acetophenone. The compounds were shown to be attractive to the relevant vector species in field studies, when incorporated into a formulation that permitted a continuous release of the compound over time and used in concert with previously developed trap platforms. Conclusions/Significance The identification of compounds attractive to the major vectors of O. volvulus will permit the development of optimized traps. Such traps may replace the use of human vector collectors for monitoring the effectiveness of onchocerciasis elimination programs and could find use as a contributing component in an integrated vector control/drug program aimed at eliminating river blindness in Africa. PMID:25569240

  1. Scientific controversies on biological knowledge construction: investigating a continued formation course for teachers with respect for human biological evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcelo Erdmann Bulla

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The research here presented has as central theme the human biological evolution, its scientific controversies and the continued formation of science and biology teachers. We evaluate the development of a teaching sequence on the topic, emphasizing the scientific controversy regarding the supposed fossil hominid Ardipithecus ramidus (“Ardi” in a continued formation course for teachers of science and biology of basic public network Cascavel-PR and region. The empirical work involved collecting data from the responses provided by teachers to an initial questionnaire and a final. The analysis and data discussion has highlighted the importance of scientific controversy for the development of scientific knowledge and the urgency to insert the contents of human evolution in subjects on the initial formation of courses in licentiate of Biological Sciences. It is necessary also to offer continued formation courses to include such content for teachers already inserted in schools. We conclude that teaching biology and science using scientific controversies may be in satisfactory teaching tool to introduce the history and nature of science, since scientific activity is permeated by conflicts.

  2. Disentangling the role of environmental and human pressures on biological invasions across Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pysek, Petr; Jarosík, Vojtech; Hulme, Philip E; Kühn, Ingolf; Wild, Jan; Arianoutsou, Margarita; Bacher, Sven; Chiron, Francois; Didziulis, Viktoras; Essl, Franz; Genovesi, Piero; Gherardi, Francesca; Hejda, Martin; Kark, Salit; Lambdon, Philip W; Desprez-Loustau, Marie-Laure; Nentwig, Wolfgang; Pergl, Jan; Poboljsaj, Katja; Rabitsch, Wolfgang; Roques, Alain; Roy, David B; Shirley, Susan; Solarz, Wojciech; Vilà, Montserrat; Winter, Marten

    2010-07-06

    The accelerating rates of international trade, travel, and transport in the latter half of the twentieth century have led to the progressive mixing of biota from across the world and the number of species introduced to new regions continues to increase. The importance of biogeographic, climatic, economic, and demographic factors as drivers of this trend is increasingly being realized but as yet there is no consensus regarding their relative importance. Whereas little may be done to mitigate the effects of geography and climate on invasions, a wider range of options may exist to moderate the impacts of economic and demographic drivers. Here we use the most recent data available from Europe to partition between macroecological, economic, and demographic variables the variation in alien species richness of bryophytes, fungi, vascular plants, terrestrial insects, aquatic invertebrates, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. Only national wealth and human population density were statistically significant predictors in the majority of models when analyzed jointly with climate, geography, and land cover. The economic and demographic variables reflect the intensity of human activities and integrate the effect of factors that directly determine the outcome of invasion such as propagule pressure, pathways of introduction, eutrophication, and the intensity of anthropogenic disturbance. The strong influence of economic and demographic variables on the levels of invasion by alien species demonstrates that future solutions to the problem of biological invasions at a national scale lie in mitigating the negative environmental consequences of human activities that generate wealth and by promoting more sustainable population growth.

  3. Interests of 5th through 10th Grade Students toward Human Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erten, Sinan

    2008-01-01

    This study investigated the middle and high school students' interests towards the subjects of human biology, specifically, "Human Health and Nutrition" and "Human Body and Organs." The study also investigated sources of their interests and factors that impact their interests, namely people that they interact and courses that…

  4. Major human milk oligosaccharides are absorbed into the systemic circulation after oral administration in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vazquez, E; Santos-Fandila, A; Buck, R; Rueda, R; Ramirez, M

    2017-01-01

    Human milk oligosaccharides (HMO) are involved in many biological functions influencing infant health. Although HMO act locally at the intestine, recent evidence has demonstrated that HMO are partially incorporated into the systemic circulation of breast-fed infants. In the last few years, a large amount of research has been conducted using preclinical models to uncover new biological functions of HMO. The aim of this study was to evaluate the absorption and urine excretion of HMO in rats. We administered a single oral dose of the following HMO: 2'-fucosyllactose (2'-FL), 6'-sialyllactose and lacto-N-neotetraose at different concentrations to adult rats. The time course of absorption of HMO into the bloodstream and their appearance in urine was studied. Our results showed that rats, similar to human infants, are able to effectively absorb a portion of HMO from the intestine into plasma and to excrete them in urine. On the basis of this, we also conducted a specific kinetic absorption study with 2'-FL, the most predominant HMO in human milk, in 9-11-d-old rat pups. Our results confirmed that a significant amount of 2'-FL was absorbed into the systemic circulation and subsequently excreted in urine during lactation in rats in a dose-depended manner. We also found basal levels of these HMO in plasma and urine of adult rats as well as rat pups as a natural result of nursing. Our data suggest that the rat may be a useful preclinical model that provides new insights into the metabolism and functions of HMO.

  5. Ancient, highly polymorphic human major histocompatibility complex DQA1 intron sequence

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McGinnis, M.D.; Quinn, D.L.; Lebo, R.V. [Univ. of California, San Francisco, CA (United States); Simons, M.J. [GeneType Pty. Ltd., Fitzroy, Victoria (Australia)

    1994-10-01

    A 438 basepair intron 1 sequence adjacent to exon 2 in the human major histocompatibility complex DQA1 gene defined 16 allelic variants in 69 individuals from wide ethnic backgrounds. In contrast, the most variable coding region spanned by the 247 basepair exon 2 defined 11 allelic variants. Our phylogenetic human intron 1 tree derived by the Bootstrap algorithm reflects the same relative allelic relationships as the reported DQA1 exon 2 have cosegregated since divergence of the human races. Comparison of human alleles to a Rhesus monkey DQA1 first intron sequence found only 10 nucleotide substitutions unique to Rhesus, with the other 428 positions (98%) found in at least one human allele. This high degree of homology reflects the evolutionary stability of intron sequences since these two species diverged over 20 million years ago. Because more intron 1 alleles exist than exon 2 alleles, these polymorphic introns can be used to improve tissue typing for transplantation, paternity testing, and forensics and to derive more complete phylogenetic trees. These results suggest that introns represent a previously underutilized polymorphic resource. 42 refs., 3 figs., 1 tab.

  6. Salvia divinorum: toxicological aspects and analysis in human biological specimens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margalho, Cláudia; Corte-Real, Francisco; López-Rivadulla, Manuel; Gallardo, Eugenia

    2016-07-01

    The identification and quantitation of the main psychoactive component of Salvia divinorum (salvinorin A) in biological specimens are crucial in forensic and clinical toxicology. Despite all the efforts made, its uncontrolled abuse has increased quickly, exposing its users' health to serious risks both in the short and long term. The use of alternative biological matrices in toxicological analyzes can be advantageous as complementary postmortem samples, or in situations when neither blood nor urine can be collected; they may be useful tools in those determinations, providing important information about prior exposure. The aim of this article is to present a brief summary of legal aspects of Salvia divinorum and salvinorin A, including the methods used for the determination of the latter in biological matrices.

  7. Human diseases through the lens of network biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furlong, Laura I

    2013-03-01

    One of the challenges raised by next generation sequencing (NGS) is the identification of clinically relevant mutations among all the genetic variation found in an individual. Network biology has emerged as an integrative and systems-level approach for the interpretation of genome data in the context of health and disease. Network biology can provide insightful models for genetic phenomena such as penetrance, epistasis, and modes of inheritance, all of which are integral aspects of Mendelian and complex diseases. Moreover, it can shed light on disease mechanisms via the identification of modules perturbed in those diseases. Current challenges include understanding disease as a result of the interplay between environmental and genetic perturbations and assessing the impact of personal sequence variations in the context of networks. Full realization of the potential of personal genomics will benefit from network biology approaches that aim to uncover the mechanisms underlying disease pathogenesis, identify new biomarkers, and guide personalized therapeutic interventions.

  8. The Math-Biology Values Instrument: Development of a Tool to Measure Life Science Majors' Task Values of Using Math in the Context of Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, Sarah E; Runyon, Christopher; Aikens, Melissa L

    2017-01-01

    In response to calls to improve the quantitative training of undergraduate biology students, there have been increased efforts to better integrate math into biology curricula. One challenge of such efforts is negative student attitudes toward math, which are thought to be particularly prevalent among biology students. According to theory, students' personal values toward using math in a biological context will influence their achievement and behavioral outcomes, but a validated instrument is needed to determine this empirically. We developed the Math-Biology Values Instrument (MBVI), an 11-item college-level self--report instrument grounded in expectancy-value theory, to measure life science students' interest in using math to understand biology, the perceived usefulness of math to their life science career, and the cost of using math in biology courses. We used a process that integrates multiple forms of validity evidence to show that scores from the MBVI can be used as a valid measure of a student's value of math in the context of biology. The MBVI can be used by instructors and researchers to help identify instructional strategies that influence math-biology values and understand how math-biology values are related to students' achievement and decisions to pursue more advanced quantitative-based courses. © 2017 S. E. Andrews et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2017 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  9. The physical characteristics of human proteins in different biological functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Tengjiao; Tang, Hailin

    2017-01-01

    The physical properties of gene products are the foundation of their biological functions. In this study, we systematically explored relationships between physical properties and biological functions. The physical properties including origin time, evolution pressure, mRNA and protein stability, molecular weight, hydrophobicity, acidity/alkaline, amino acid compositions, and chromosome location. The biological functions are defined from 4 aspects: biological process, molecular function, cellular component and cell/tissue/organ expression. We found that the proteins associated with basic material and energy metabolism process originated earlier, while the proteins associated with immune, neurological system process etc. originated later. Tissues may have a strong influence on evolution pressure. The proteins associated with energy metabolism are double-stable. Immune and peripheral cell proteins tend to be mRNA stable/protein unstable. There are very few function items with double-unstable of mRNA and protein. The proteins involved in the cell adhesion tend to consist of large proteins with high proportion of small amino acids. The proteins of organic acid transport, neurological system process and amine transport have significantly high hydrophobicity. Interestingly, the proteins involved in olfactory receptor activity tend to have high frequency of aromatic, sulfuric and hydroxyl amino acids.

  10. Major hnRNP proteins act as general TDP-43 functional modifiers both in Drosophila and human neuronal cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Appocher, Chiara; Mohagheghi, Fatemeh; Cappelli, Sara; Stuani, Cristiana; Romano, Maurizio; Feiguin, Fabian; Buratti, Emanuele

    2017-07-27

    Nuclear factor TDP-43 is known to play an important role in several neurodegenerative pathologies. In general, TDP-43 is an abundant protein within the eukaryotic nucleus that binds to many coding and non-coding RNAs and influence their processing. Using Drosophila, we have performed a functional screening to establish the ability of major hnRNP proteins to affect TDP-43 overexpression/depletion phenotypes. Interestingly, we observed that lowering hnRNP and TDP-43 expression has a generally harmful effect on flies locomotor abilities. In parallel, our study has also identified a distinct set of hnRNPs that is capable of powerfully rescuing TDP-43 toxicity in the fly eye (Hrb27c, CG42458, Glo and Syp). Most importantly, removing the human orthologs of Hrb27c (DAZAP1) in human neuronal cell lines can correct several pre-mRNA splicing events altered by TDP-43 depletion. Moreover, using RNA sequencing analysis we show that DAZAP1 and TDP-43 can co-regulate an extensive number of biological processes and molecular functions potentially important for the neuron/motor neuron pathophysiology. Our results suggest that changes in hnRNP expression levels can significantly modulate TDP-43 functions and affect pathological outcomes. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  11. Regulation of Human Cytomegalovirus Transcription in Latency: Beyond the Major Immediate-Early Promoter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Sinclair

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Lytic infection of differentiated cell types with human cytomegalovirus (HCMV results in the temporal expression of between 170–200 open reading frames (ORFs. A number of studies have demonstrated the temporal regulation of these ORFs and that this is orchestrated by both viral and cellular mechanisms associated with the co-ordinated recruitment of transcription complexes and, more recently, higher order chromatin structure. Importantly, HCMV, like all herpes viruses, establishes a lifelong latent infection of the host—one major site of latency being the undifferentiated haematopoietic progenitor cells resident in the bone marrow. Crucially, the establishment of latency is concomitant with the recruitment of cellular enzymes that promote extensive methylation of histones bound to the major immediate early promoter. As such, the repressive chromatin structure formed at the major immediate early promoter (MIEP elicits inhibition of IE gene expression and is a major factor involved in maintenance of HCMV latency. However, it is becoming increasingly clear that a distinct subset of viral genes is also expressed during latency. In this review, we will discuss the mechanisms that control the expression of these latency-associated transcripts and illustrate that regulation of these latency-associated promoters is also subject to chromatin mediated regulation and that the instructive observations previously reported regarding the negative regulation of the MIEP during latency are paralleled in the regulation of latent gene expression.

  12. Dimeric ligands for GPCRs involved in human reproduction : synthesis and biological evaluation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bonger, Kimberly Michelle

    2008-01-01

    Dimeric ligands for G-protein coupled receptors that are involved in human reproduction, namely the gonadotropin releasing hormone receptor, the luteinizing hormone receptor and the follicle-stimulating hormone receptor, were synthesized and biologically evaluated.

  13. A SIMPLE COLORIMETRIC METHOD TO DETECT BIOLOGICAL EVIDENCE OF HUMAN EXPOSURE TO MICROCYSTINS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toxic cyanobacteria are contaminants of surface waters worldwide. Microcystins are some of the most commonly detected toxins. Biological evidence of human exposure may be difficult to obtain due to limitations associated with cost, laboratory capacity, analytic support, and exp...

  14. [SWOT Analysis of the National Survey on Current Status of Major Human Parasitic Diseases in China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    ZHU, Hui-hui; ZHOU, Chang-hai; CHEN, Ying-dan; ZANG, Wei; XIAO, Ning; ZHOU, Xiao-nong

    2015-10-01

    The National Survey on Current Status of Major Human Parasitic Diseases in China has been carried out since 2014 under the organization of the National Health and Family Planning Commission of the People's Republic of China. The National Institute of Parasitic Diseases, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (NIPD, China CDC) provided technical support and was responsible for quality control in this survey. This study used SWOT method to analyze the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that were encountered by he NIPD, China CDC during the completion of the survey. Accordingly, working strategies were proposed to facilitate the future field work.

  15. A Major Human White Matter Pathway Between Dorsal and Ventral Visual Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takemura, Hiromasa; Rokem, Ariel; Winawer, Jonathan; Yeatman, Jason D; Wandell, Brian A; Pestilli, Franco

    2016-05-01

    Human visual cortex comprises many visual field maps organized into clusters. A standard organization separates visual maps into 2 distinct clusters within ventral and dorsal cortex. We combined fMRI, diffusion MRI, and fiber tractography to identify a major white matter pathway, the vertical occipital fasciculus (VOF), connecting maps within the dorsal and ventral visual cortex. We use a model-based method to assess the statistical evidence supporting several aspects of the VOF wiring pattern. There is strong evidence supporting the hypothesis that dorsal and ventral visual maps communicate through the VOF. The cortical projection zones of the VOF suggest that human ventral (hV4/VO-1) and dorsal (V3A/B) maps exchange substantial information. The VOF appears to be crucial for transmitting signals between regions that encode object properties including form, identity, and color and regions that map spatial information.

  16. The Major Histocompatibility Complex and Perfumers' Descriptions of Human Body Odors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claus Wedekind

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available The MHC (major histocompatibility complex is a group of genes that play a crucial role in immune recognition and in tolerance of tissue grafting. The MHC has also been found to influence body odors, body odor preferences, and mate choice in mice and humans. Here we test whether verbal descriptions of human body odors can be linked to the MHC. We asked 45 male students to live as odor neutral as possible for two consecutive days and to wear a T-shirt during the nights. The odors of these T-shirts were then described by five evaluators: two professional perfumers and three laymen. One of the perfumers was able to describe the T-shirt odors in such a way that some of the allelic specificity of the MHC was significantly revealed (after Bonferroni correction for multiple testing. This shows that, although difficult, some people are able to describe MHC-correlated body odor components.

  17. IS HUMAN CAPITAL A MAJOR DETERMINANT OF THE FDI INFLOWS? EMPIRICAL EVIDENCES FROM THE EU STATE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Diaconu (căs. Maxim

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Knowing the importance of foreign direct investments (FDI for economic development of a country, the main objective of the present paper is to analyse whether the human capital represents a major determinant for the multinational companies to invest in the European Union states. Moreover, we intend to discover if there are some other factors that may enhance this role played by human capital. In order to reach the established objective, we have investigated the literature, including several case studies, and we have statistically analysed the secondary data offered by various yearbooks and reports. The relevance of this paper results from the fact that the conclusions may offer valuable information for the policy makers to create a more favourable environment for the FDI inflows in the EU states, on long term.

  18. The Math?Biology Values Instrument: Development of a Tool to Measure Life Science Majors? Task Values of Using Math in the Context of Biology

    OpenAIRE

    Andrews, Sarah E.; Runyon, Christopher; Aikens, Melissa L.

    2017-01-01

    This study describes the development of a survey grounded in expectancy-value theory, providing multiple forms of validity evidence to support its use as a measure of students? interest in using math to understand biology, the usefulness of math for one?s life science career, and the perceived cost of using math in biology courses.

  19. Biological Effects of TMPRSS2/ERG Fusion Isoforms in Human Prostate Cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-02-01

    TITLE: Biological Effects of TMPRSS2/ERG Fusion Isoforms in Human Prostate Cancer PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Jianghua Wang, M.D...6 JAN 2009 / / /4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Biological Effects of TMPRSS2/ERG Fusion Isoforms in Human Prostate Cancer 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER W81XWH...quantitative RT-PCR arrays we have identified candidate mediators of these phenotypic effects . We propose to extend these studies to primary prostate epithelial

  20. The impact of a Classroom Performance System on learning gains in a biology course for science majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marin, Nilo Eric

    This study was conducted to determine if the use of the technology known as Classroom Performance System (CPS), specifically referred to as "Clickers", improves the learning gains of students enrolled in a biology course for science majors. CPS is one of a group of developing technologies adapted for providing feedback in the classroom using a learner-centered approach. It supports and facilitates discussion among students and between them and teachers, and provides for participation by passive students. Advocates, influenced by constructivist theories, claim increased academic achievement. In science teaching, the results have been mixed, but there is some evidence of improvements in conceptual understanding. The study employed a pretest-posttest, non-equivalent groups experimental design. The sample consisted of 226 participants in six sections of a college biology course at a large community college in South Florida with two instructors trained in the use of clickers. Each instructor randomly selected their sections into CPS (treatment) and non-CPS (control) groups. All participants filled out a survey that included demographic data at the beginning of the semester. The treatment group used clicker questions throughout, with discussions as necessary, whereas the control groups answered the same questions as quizzes, similarly engaging in discussion where necessary. The learning gains were assessed on a pre/post-test basis. The average learning gains, defined as the actual gain divided by the possible gain, were slightly better in the treatment group than in the control group, but the difference was statistically non-significant. An Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) statistic with pretest scores as the covariate was conducted to test for significant differences between the treatment and control groups on the posttest. A second ANCOVA was used to determine the significance of differences between the treatment and control groups on the posttest scores, after

  1. Placenta-on-a-chip: a novel platform to study the biology of the human placenta.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Ji Soo; Romero, Roberto; Han, Yu Mi; Kim, Hee Chan; Kim, Chong Jai; Hong, Joon-Seok; Huh, Dongeun

    2016-01-01

    Studying the biology of the human placenta represents a major experimental challenge. Although conventional cell culture techniques have been used to study different types of placenta-derived cells, current in vitro models have limitations in recapitulating organ-specific structure and key physiological functions of the placenta. Here we demonstrate that it is possible to leverage microfluidic and microfabrication technologies to develop a microengineered biomimetic model that replicates the architecture and function of the placenta. A "Placenta-on-a-Chip" microdevice was created by using a set of soft elastomer-based microfabrication techniques known as soft lithography. This microsystem consisted of two polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microfluidic channels separated by a thin extracellular matrix (ECM) membrane. To reproduce the placental barrier in this model, human trophoblasts (JEG-3) and human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) were seeded onto the opposite sides of the ECM membrane and cultured under dynamic flow conditions to form confluent epithelial and endothelial layers in close apposition. We tested the physiological function of the microengineered placental barrier by measuring glucose transport across the trophoblast-endothelial interface over time. The permeability of the barrier study was analyzed and compared to that obtained from acellular devices and additional control groups that contained epithelial or endothelial layers alone. Our microfluidic cell culture system provided a tightly controlled fluidic environment conducive to the proliferation and maintenance of JEG-3 trophoblasts and HUVECs on the ECM scaffold. Prolonged culture in this model produced confluent cellular monolayers on the intervening membrane that together formed the placental barrier. This in vivo-like microarchitecture was also critical for creating a physiologically relevant effective barrier to glucose transport. Quantitative investigation of barrier function was

  2. Feto-maternal biology and ethics of human society

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paulesu, Luana; Ietta, Francesca; Petraglia, Felice

    2005-01-01

    The growing interest in human reproduction and the identity of the embryo have prompted us to bring some considerations to the attention of scientists. In particular, we focus on the interactive relationship between the embryo and the mother starting from the earliest stages of development. Principles governing the acceptance and growth of the embryo in the uterus may represent a model for mutual tolerance and peaceful co-existence in human society. PMID:16232317

  3. Feto-maternal biology and ethics of human society

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petraglia Felice

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The growing interest in human reproduction and the identity of the embryo have prompted us to bring some considerations to the attention of scientists. In particular, we focus on the interactive relationship between the embryo and the mother starting from the earliest stages of development. Principles governing the acceptance and growth of the embryo in the uterus may represent a model for mutual tolerance and peaceful co-existence in human society.

  4. Acanthamoeba: biology and increasing importance in human health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Naveed Ahmed

    2006-07-01

    Acanthamoeba is an opportunistic protozoan that is widely distributed in the environment and is well recognized to produce serious human infections, including a blinding keratitis and a fatal encephalitis. This review presents our current understanding of the burden of Acanthamoeba infections on human health, their pathogenesis and pathophysiology, and molecular mechanisms associated with the disease, as well as virulence traits of Acanthamoeba that may be targets for therapeutic interventions and/or the development of preventative measures.

  5. Clarification of the terminology of the major human salivary glands: acinus and alveolus are not synonymous.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilloteaux, Jacques; Afolayan, Adebowale

    2014-08-01

    Discrepancies in the terminology of the major human salivary glands often appear in anatomical textbooks and tend to adversely affect student's learning experience in Microscopic Anatomy. The main culprit is the inconsistent description of the morphology of these glands secretory end pieces where "acinus" and "alveolus" are used interchangeably. The correct terminology originated from Malpighi (1687), repeated by Kölliker (1854), but over the years has been misinterpreted by prominent authors as a result of the nature of specimen preparation. This commentary is based on etymology, current standard light microscopy, research studies and consultation with experts. The overall objective of this publication is to recommend that textbooks should endeavour to modify the relevant descriptions about this terminology in their future editions. The most appropriate terminology for the major human salivary glands would be: (1) the parotid gland, entirely serous, should be called compound acinar glands; (2) the submandibular glands are mixed glands; their serous components are compound acinar while some of the mucinous areas are tubular with serous, crescents or demilunes, as acinar end pieces hence they should be named compound tubuloacinar glands; (3) the sublingual glands, mainly mucous glands with tubular shape, with small acinar end pieces that are serous crescents thence they should be called compound tubuloacinar glands.

  6. Expression of Recombinant Human Amelogenin in Iranian Lizard Leishmania and Its Biological Function Assay

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zahra YADEGARI

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Amelogenins are the major components of enamel matrix proteins. Enamel matrix derivatives (EMD can be used in periodontal diseases to regenerate periodontal tissues. The main aim of this study was to evaluate ex-pression of full-length functional recombinant human amelogenin (rhAm in Iranian lizard Leishmania (I.L.L. as an alternative eukaryotic expression system.Methods: Human cDNA encoding a 175-amino acid amelogenin expression cassette was sub cloned into a pLEXSY vector. The construct was transferred into Leishmania cells by electroporation. The protein production was surveyed in the transcription and the translation levels. The expressed protein was purified and some of its biological properties were investigated in comparison to EMD and negative control.Results: Expression of rhAm was confirmed by RT-PCR and western blot test in Leishmania cells. Purified rhAm sig-nificantly inhibited the formation of tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase positive (TRAP+ multinuclear cells in calcitriol stimulated mouse marrow cultures. Moreover, it significantly promoted proliferation and DNA synthesis in L929 mouse fibroblast cells.Conclusion: Functional rhAm was successfully expressed in I.L.L. Easy handling and post translation modification were the main advantages of this expression system. It is suggested to investigate molecular properties of this rhAm in the future.

  7. Human eIF3: from ‘blobology’ to biological insight

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-01-01

    Translation in eukaryotes is highly regulated during initiation, a process impacted by numerous readouts of a cell's state. There are many cases in which cellular messenger RNAs likely do not follow the canonical ‘scanning’ mechanism of translation initiation, but the molecular mechanisms underlying these pathways are still being uncovered. Some RNA viruses such as the hepatitis C virus use highly structured RNA elements termed internal ribosome entry sites (IRESs) that commandeer eukaryotic translation initiation, by using specific interactions with the general eukaryotic translation initiation factor eIF3. Here, I present evidence that, in addition to its general role in translation, eIF3 in humans and likely in all multicellular eukaryotes also acts as a translational activator or repressor by binding RNA structures in the 5′-untranslated regions of specific mRNAs, analogous to the role of the mediator complex in transcription. Furthermore, eIF3 in multicellular eukaryotes also harbours a 5′ 7-methylguanosine cap-binding subunit—eIF3d—which replaces the general cap-binding initiation factor eIF4E in the translation of select mRNAs. Based on results from cell biological, biochemical and structural studies of eIF3, it is likely that human translation initiation proceeds through dozens of different molecular pathways, the vast majority of which remain to be explored. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Perspectives on the ribosome’. PMID:28138064

  8. Assessment of a micropatterned hepatocyte coculture system to generate major human excretory and circulating drug metabolites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Wendy WeiWei; Khetani, Salman R; Krzyzewski, Stacy; Duignan, David B; Obach, R Scott

    2010-10-01

    Metabolism is one of the important determinants of the overall disposition of drugs, and the profile of metabolites can have an impact on efficacy and safety. Predicting which drug metabolites will be quantitatively predominant in humans has become increasingly important in the research and development of new drugs. In this study, a novel micropatterned hepatocyte coculture system was evaluated for its ability to generate human in vivo metabolites. Twenty-seven compounds of diverse chemical structure and subject to a range of drug biotransformation reactions were assessed for metabolite profiles in the micropatterned coculture system using pooled cryopreserved human hepatocytes. The ability of this system to generate metabolites that are >10% of dose in excreta or >10% of total drug-related material in circulation was assessed and compared to previously reported data obtained in human hepatocyte suspensions, liver S-9 fraction, and liver microsomes. The micropatterned coculture system was incubated for up to 7 days without a change in medium, which offered an ability to generate metabolites for slowly metabolized compounds. The micropatterned coculture system generated 82% of the excretory metabolites that exceed 10% of dose and 75% of the circulating metabolites that exceed 10% of total circulating drug-related material, exceeds the performance of hepatocyte suspension incubations and other in vitro systems. Phase 1 and phase 2 metabolites were generated, as well as metabolites that arise via two or more sequential reactions. These results suggest that this in vitro system offers the highest performance among in vitro metabolism systems to predict major human in vivo metabolites.

  9. Contemporary status of insecticide resistance in the major Aedes vectors of arboviruses infecting humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine L Moyes

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Both Aedes aegytpi and Ae. albopictus are major vectors of 5 important arboviruses (namely chikungunya virus, dengue virus, Rift Valley fever virus, yellow fever virus, and Zika virus, making these mosquitoes an important factor in the worldwide burden of infectious disease. Vector control using insecticides coupled with larval source reduction is critical to control the transmission of these viruses to humans but is threatened by the emergence of insecticide resistance. Here, we review the available evidence for the geographical distribution of insecticide resistance in these 2 major vectors worldwide and map the data collated for the 4 main classes of neurotoxic insecticide (carbamates, organochlorines, organophosphates, and pyrethroids. Emerging resistance to all 4 of these insecticide classes has been detected in the Americas, Africa, and Asia. Target-site mutations and increased insecticide detoxification have both been linked to resistance in Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus but more work is required to further elucidate metabolic mechanisms and develop robust diagnostic assays. Geographical distributions are provided for the mechanisms that have been shown to be important to date. Estimating insecticide resistance in unsampled locations is hampered by a lack of standardisation in the diagnostic tools used and by a lack of data in a number of regions for both resistance phenotypes and genotypes. The need for increased sampling using standard methods is critical to tackle the issue of emerging insecticide resistance threatening human health. Specifically, diagnostic doses and well-characterised susceptible strains are needed for the full range of insecticides used to control Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus to standardise measurement of the resistant phenotype, and calibrated diagnostic assays are needed for the major mechanisms of resistance.

  10. Contemporary status of insecticide resistance in the major Aedes vectors of arboviruses infecting humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vontas, John; Martins, Ademir J.; Ng, Lee Ching; Koou, Sin Ying; Dusfour, Isabelle; Raghavendra, Kamaraju; Pinto, João; Corbel, Vincent; David, Jean-Philippe; Weetman, David

    2017-01-01

    Both Aedes aegytpi and Ae. albopictus are major vectors of 5 important arboviruses (namely chikungunya virus, dengue virus, Rift Valley fever virus, yellow fever virus, and Zika virus), making these mosquitoes an important factor in the worldwide burden of infectious disease. Vector control using insecticides coupled with larval source reduction is critical to control the transmission of these viruses to humans but is threatened by the emergence of insecticide resistance. Here, we review the available evidence for the geographical distribution of insecticide resistance in these 2 major vectors worldwide and map the data collated for the 4 main classes of neurotoxic insecticide (carbamates, organochlorines, organophosphates, and pyrethroids). Emerging resistance to all 4 of these insecticide classes has been detected in the Americas, Africa, and Asia. Target-site mutations and increased insecticide detoxification have both been linked to resistance in Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus but more work is required to further elucidate metabolic mechanisms and develop robust diagnostic assays. Geographical distributions are provided for the mechanisms that have been shown to be important to date. Estimating insecticide resistance in unsampled locations is hampered by a lack of standardisation in the diagnostic tools used and by a lack of data in a number of regions for both resistance phenotypes and genotypes. The need for increased sampling using standard methods is critical to tackle the issue of emerging insecticide resistance threatening human health. Specifically, diagnostic doses and well-characterised susceptible strains are needed for the full range of insecticides used to control Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus to standardise measurement of the resistant phenotype, and calibrated diagnostic assays are needed for the major mechanisms of resistance. PMID:28727779

  11. Contemporary status of insecticide resistance in the major Aedes vectors of arboviruses infecting humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moyes, Catherine L; Vontas, John; Martins, Ademir J; Ng, Lee Ching; Koou, Sin Ying; Dusfour, Isabelle; Raghavendra, Kamaraju; Pinto, João; Corbel, Vincent; David, Jean-Philippe; Weetman, David

    2017-07-01

    Both Aedes aegytpi and Ae. albopictus are major vectors of 5 important arboviruses (namely chikungunya virus, dengue virus, Rift Valley fever virus, yellow fever virus, and Zika virus), making these mosquitoes an important factor in the worldwide burden of infectious disease. Vector control using insecticides coupled with larval source reduction is critical to control the transmission of these viruses to humans but is threatened by the emergence of insecticide resistance. Here, we review the available evidence for the geographical distribution of insecticide resistance in these 2 major vectors worldwide and map the data collated for the 4 main classes of neurotoxic insecticide (carbamates, organochlorines, organophosphates, and pyrethroids). Emerging resistance to all 4 of these insecticide classes has been detected in the Americas, Africa, and Asia. Target-site mutations and increased insecticide detoxification have both been linked to resistance in Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus but more work is required to further elucidate metabolic mechanisms and develop robust diagnostic assays. Geographical distributions are provided for the mechanisms that have been shown to be important to date. Estimating insecticide resistance in unsampled locations is hampered by a lack of standardisation in the diagnostic tools used and by a lack of data in a number of regions for both resistance phenotypes and genotypes. The need for increased sampling using standard methods is critical to tackle the issue of emerging insecticide resistance threatening human health. Specifically, diagnostic doses and well-characterised susceptible strains are needed for the full range of insecticides used to control Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus to standardise measurement of the resistant phenotype, and calibrated diagnostic assays are needed for the major mechanisms of resistance.

  12. Applying systems biology methods to the study of human physiology in extreme environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Lindsay M; Thiele, Ines

    2013-03-22

    Systems biology is defined in this review as 'an iterative process of computational model building and experimental model revision with the aim of understanding or simulating complex biological systems'. We propose that, in practice, systems biology rests on three pillars: computation, the omics disciplines and repeated experimental perturbation of the system of interest. The number of ethical and physiologically relevant perturbations that can be used in experiments on healthy humans is extremely limited and principally comprises exercise, nutrition, infusions (e.g. Intralipid), some drugs and altered environment. Thus, we argue that systems biology and environmental physiology are natural symbionts for those interested in a system-level understanding of human biology. However, despite excellent progress in high-altitude genetics and several proteomics studies, systems biology research into human adaptation to extreme environments is in its infancy. A brief description and overview of systems biology in its current guise is given, followed by a mini review of computational methods used for modelling biological systems. Special attention is given to high-altitude research, metabolic network reconstruction and constraint-based modelling.

  13. Speed of human biological form and motion processing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George Buzzell

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

  14. Identification of copy number variants defining genomic differences among major human groups.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lluís Armengol

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Understanding the genetic contribution to phenotype variation of human groups is necessary to elucidate differences in disease predisposition and response to pharmaceutical treatments in different human populations. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We have investigated the genome-wide profile of structural variation on pooled samples from the three populations studied in the HapMap project by comparative genome hybridization (CGH in different array platforms. We have identified and experimentally validated 33 genomic loci that show significant copy number differences from one population to the other. Interestingly, we found an enrichment of genes related to environment adaptation (immune response, lipid metabolism and extracellular space within these regions and the study of expression data revealed that more than half of the copy number variants (CNVs translate into gene-expression differences among populations, suggesting that they could have functional consequences. In addition, the identification of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs that are in linkage disequilibrium with the copy number alleles allowed us to detect evidences of population differentiation and recent selection at the nucleotide variation level. CONCLUSIONS: Overall, our results provide a comprehensive view of relevant copy number changes that might play a role in phenotypic differences among major human populations, and generate a list of interesting candidates for future studies.

  15. Human breast cancer: its genetics, biology and prognosis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M. Riaz (Muhammad)

    2013-01-01

    textabstractCancer is a major public health problem, being the second leading cause of death, after cardiovascular diseases1. Among women, breast cancer is the first neoplasm for incidence and the second for mortality all over the world. World-wide, an incidence of 1.4 million new cases and a mortal

  16. Human breast cancer: its genetics, biology and prognosis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M. Riaz (Muhammad)

    2013-01-01

    textabstractCancer is a major public health problem, being the second leading cause of death, after cardiovascular diseases1. Among women, breast cancer is the first neoplasm for incidence and the second for mortality all over the world. World-wide, an incidence of 1.4 million new cases and

  17. BioCore Guide: A Tool for Interpreting the Core Concepts of Vision and Change for Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownell, Sara E.; Freeman, Scott; Wenderoth, Mary Pat; Crowe, Alison J.

    2014-01-01

    "Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education" outlined five core concepts intended to guide undergraduate biology education: 1) evolution; 2) structure and function; 3) information flow, exchange, and storage; 4) pathways and transformations of energy and matter; and 5) systems. We have taken these general recommendations and…

  18. Promoting Student Inquiry Using "Zea Mays" (Corn) Cultivars for Hypothesis-Driven Experimentation in a Majors Introductory Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blair, Amy C.; Peters, Brenda J.; Bendixen, Conrad W.

    2014-01-01

    The AAAS Vision and Change report (2011) recommends incorporating student research experiences into the biology curriculum at the undergraduate level. This article describes, in detail, how "Zea mays" (corn) cultivars were used as a model for a hypothesis-driven short-term research project in an introductory biology course at a small…

  19. BioCore Guide: A Tool for Interpreting the Core Concepts of Vision and Change for Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownell, Sara E.; Freeman, Scott; Wenderoth, Mary Pat; Crowe, Alison J.

    2014-01-01

    "Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education" outlined five core concepts intended to guide undergraduate biology education: 1) evolution; 2) structure and function; 3) information flow, exchange, and storage; 4) pathways and transformations of energy and matter; and 5) systems. We have taken these general recommendations and…

  20. Promoting Student Inquiry Using "Zea Mays" (Corn) Cultivars for Hypothesis-Driven Experimentation in a Majors Introductory Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blair, Amy C.; Peters, Brenda J.; Bendixen, Conrad W.

    2014-01-01

    The AAAS Vision and Change report (2011) recommends incorporating student research experiences into the biology curriculum at the undergraduate level. This article describes, in detail, how "Zea mays" (corn) cultivars were used as a model for a hypothesis-driven short-term research project in an introductory biology course at a small…

  1. Discoveries of rhythms in human biological functions: a historical review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemmer, Björn

    2009-08-01

    Though there are very early and ancient observations on the daily variation in physiological and pathophysiological functions (e.g., bronchial asthma), more detailed and scientific reports were not published until the beginning of the 17th century. The aim of this review is to bring those reports to the attention of researchers of chronobiology and chronopharmacology. The ancient books and their contents, which constitute the basis for this review, are part of the personal library collection of the author; numerous observations and reports on biologic rhythms in man are presented here for the first time. The intent of this review is to demonstrate that the fields of chronobiology and chronopharmacology are not only a new and modern branch of science, but that it stands on the shoulders of wonderful and insightful observations and explanations made by our scientific forefathers. It is the hope that the reader will enjoy the richness of the ancient reports that contribute to our present knowledge achieved through astute early biologic rhythm research.

  2. Preference for Point-Light Human Biological Motion in Newborns: Contribution of Translational Displacement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bidet-Ildei, Christel; Kitromilides, Elenitsa; Orliaguet, Jean-Pierre; Pavlova, Marina; Gentaz, Edouard

    2014-01-01

    In human newborns, spontaneous visual preference for biological motion is reported to occur at birth, but the factors underpinning this preference are still in debate. Using a standard visual preferential looking paradigm, 4 experiments were carried out in 3-day-old human newborns to assess the influence of translational displacement on perception…

  3. Human embryonic stem cells : advancing biology and cardiogenesis towards functional applications l

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Braam, Stefan Robbert

    2010-01-01

    Human embryonic stem cells (hESC) hold great potential as a model for human development, disease pathology, drug discovery and safety pharmacology. All these applications will depend on comprehensive knowledge of their biology and control of their signaling mechanisms and fate choices. To begin to a

  4. 75 FR 33312 - Indexing Structured Product Labeling for Human Prescription Drug and Biological Products; Request...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-06-11

    ... HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration Indexing Structured Product Labeling for Human Prescription... Evaluation and Research (CDER) and Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER) are indexing certain... class as a top priority for indexing of product labeling information. FDA is now announcing that...

  5. Preference for Point-Light Human Biological Motion in Newborns: Contribution of Translational Displacement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bidet-Ildei, Christel; Kitromilides, Elenitsa; Orliaguet, Jean-Pierre; Pavlova, Marina; Gentaz, Edouard

    2014-01-01

    In human newborns, spontaneous visual preference for biological motion is reported to occur at birth, but the factors underpinning this preference are still in debate. Using a standard visual preferential looking paradigm, 4 experiments were carried out in 3-day-old human newborns to assess the influence of translational displacement on perception…

  6. "Eve" in Africa: Human Evolution Meets Molecular Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seager, Robert D.

    1990-01-01

    Presented is a discussion of recent evidence on the evolution of human forms on earth gathered and evaluated using mitochondrial DNA techniques. Theories regarding the possibility that a common female ancestor existed in Africa about 200,000 years ago are discussed. A list of teaching aids is provided. (CW)

  7. Computational biology in human aging : an omics data integration approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Akker, Erik Ben van den

    2015-01-01

    Throughout this thesis, human aging and its relation to health are studied in the context of two parallel though complementary lines of research: biomarkers and genetics. The search for informative biomarkers of aging focuses on easy accessible and quantifiable substances of the body that can be u

  8. [Effects of culture supernatant of human amnion mesenchymal stem cells on biological characteristics of human fibroblasts].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Qi'er; Lyu, Lu; Xin, Haiming; Luo, Liang; Tong, Yalin; Mo, Yongliang; Yue, Yigang

    2016-06-01

    To investigate the effects of culture supernatant of human amnion mesenchymal stem cells (hAMSCs-CS) on biological characteristics of human fibroblasts. (1) hAMSCs were isolated from deprecated human fresh amnion tissue of placenta and then sub-cultured. The morphology of hAMSCs on culture day 3 and hAMSCs of the third passage were observed with inverted phase contrast microscope. (2) Two batches of hAMSCs of the third passage were obtained, then the expression of vimentin of cells was observed with immunofluorescence method, and the expression of cell surface marker CD90, CD73, CD105, and CD45 was detected by flow cytometer. (3) hAMSCs-CS of the third passage at culture hour 72 were collected, and the content of insulin-like growth factor Ⅰ (IGF-Ⅰ), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), epidermal growth factor (EGF), and basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) were detected by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. (4) Human fibroblasts were isolated from deprecated human fresh prepuce tissue of circumcision and then sub-cultured. Human fibroblasts of the third passage were used in the following experiments. Cells were divided into blank control group and 10%, 30%, 50%, and 70% hAMSCs-CS groups according to the random number table (the same grouping method below), with 48 wells in each group. Cells in blank control group were cultured with DMEM/F12 medium containing 2% fetal bovine serum (FBS), while cells in the latter 4 groups were cultured with DMEM/F12 medium containing corresponding volume fraction of hAMSCs-CS and 2% FBS. The proliferation activity of cells was detected by cell counting kit 8 and microplate reader at culture hour 12, 24, 48, and 72, respectively, and corresponding volume fraction of hAMSCs-CS which causing the best proliferation activity of human fibroblasts was used in the following experiments. (5) Human fibroblasts were divided into blank control group and 50% hAMSCs-CS group and treated as in (4), with 4 wells in each group, at post

  9. Biological effects of Echinacea purpurea on human blood cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joksić, Gordana; Petrović, Sandra; Joksić, Ivana; Leskovac, Andreja

    2009-06-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate radioprotective properties of Echinacea purpurea tablets in vivo. We analysed lymphocyte chromosome aberrations (CA), micronuclei (MN), apoptosis of leukocytes and haematological parameters in a group of radiation workers who were identified as carrying dicentric chromosomes in their lymphocytes. All radiation workers were taking two 275 mg Echinacea tablets b.i.d., according to a pharmacist's recommendation. All parameters were analysed before and after the two-week treatment. At the end of the treatment lymphocyte CA frequency dropped significantly, and the number of apoptotic cells increased. The inverse lymphocyte-to-granulocyte ratio at the beginning of the study changed to normal at its end. In conclusion, biological effects observed after administration of Echinacea purpurea preparation suggest that it may be beneficial for the prevention of adverse health effects in workers exposed to ionising radiation.

  10. Epistemological conceptions of biology majors and their transformation by an explicit proposal for teaching history and philosophy of science

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charbel Niño El-Hani

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper reports the results obtained in the test of a proposal for the teaching of history and philosophy of science to Higher Education students enrolled in courses on natural sciences. The proposal takes actual historical examples as a basis for eliciting discussions about philosophical issues. It amounts to an explicit approach, directly addressing epistemological contents, which was elaborated and tested from the perspective of a teacher-researcher. The proposal was tested through a quali-quantitative approach. Data were gathered in a class of a course on history and philosophy of science for Biology majors, through the questionnaire VNOS-C (Views of the Nature of Science, Form C, at the beginning and end of a term. They were qualitatively treated by analyzing categories built from the answers given by the students. Based on some issues agreed upon by several post-positivist theories of science, we evaluated the adequacy of the students’ epistemological views, obtaining scores for each question, the sum of which resulted in a total score for each questionnaire. The effects of the proposal on the students’ views were analyzed qualitative and quantitatively by means of a discussion of the frequencies of adequate, partially adequate, and inadequate answers to each question and a statistical test comparing the total scores of each student, in the pre- and post-tests. To analyze the effects on each epistemological aspect addressed in the questionnaire, we performed tests comparing the scores obtained by the students in each question, at the beginning and end of the term. Generally speaking, the proposal resulted in an evolution of the views about the nature of science of all students who did both the pre- and post-tests. It was more effective in promoting a change in views about the demarcation between science and other ways of knowing, the differences between laws and theories, and the relationship between models and evidence

  11. THERMOREGULATION AND HUMAN PERFORMANCE: PHYSIOLOGICAL AND BIOLOGICAL ASPECTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank E Marino

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Vol 53 (Medicine & Sport Science This collection on the latest interpretation of research data about the relationship between thermoregulation, exercise performance and fatigue is published as the 53rd volume of Medicine and Sport Science Journal. PURPOSE The book aims to explain how the advances in technology and methodology allowed studying the affects of the changing body temperature on metabolism and the role played by the nervous system in shaping human performance under challenging thermal situations. FEATURES This publication provides different interpretations of recent research for a better understanding of the limitations of thermoregulation in nine titles. The presented titles are: The Evolutionary Basis of Thermoregulation and Exercise Performance; Comparative Thermoregulation and the Quest for Athletic Supremacy; Thermoregulation, Fatigue and Exercise Modality; Neuromuscular Response to Exercise Heat Stress; Intestinal Barrier Dysfunction, Endotoxemia and Gastrointestinal Symptoms: The 'Canary in the Coal Mine' during Exercise-Heat Stress?; Effects of Peripheral Cooling on Characteristics of Local Muscle; Cooling Interventions for the Protection and Recovery of Exercise Performance from Exercise-Induced Heat Stress; Ethnicity and Temperature Regulation; Exercise Heat Stress and Metabolism. The evidence for the human's ability to adjust their performance according to the thermal limits in order to preserve cellular homeostasis is particularly noteworthy. AUDIENCE This is a fundamental book for any students and/or researchers involved in the fields of medicine, exercise physiology and human performance with special reference to thermal regulation. ASSESSMENT This publication is a must-read text for all those working in thermal medicine, exercise physiology and human performance fields

  12. Role of Epigenetics in Biology and Human Diseases

    OpenAIRE

    Moosavi, Azam; Ardekani, Ali Motevalizadeh

    2016-01-01

    For a long time, scientists have tried to describe disorders just by genetic or environmental factors. However, the role of epigenetics in human diseases has been considered from a half of century ago. In the last decade, this subject has attracted many interests, especially in complicated disorders such as behavior plasticity, memory, cancer, autoimmune disease, and addiction as well as neurodegenerative and psychological disorders. This review first explains the history and classification o...

  13. New frontiers in human cell biology and medicine: can pluripotent stem cells deliver?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstein, Lawrence S B

    2012-11-12

    Human pluripotent stem cells provide enormous opportunities to treat disease using cell therapy. But human stem cells can also drive biomedical and cell biological discoveries in a human model system, which can be directly linked to understanding disease or developing new therapies. Finally, rigorous scientific studies of these cells can and should inform the many science and medical policy issues that confront the translation of these technologies to medicine. In this paper, I discuss these issues using amyotrophic lateral sclerosis as an example.

  14. Diet and particularly seafood are major sources of perfluorinated compounds in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haug, Line S; Thomsen, Cathrine; Brantsaeter, Anne L; Kvalem, Helen E; Haugen, Margaretha; Becher, Georg; Alexander, Jan; Meltzer, Helle M; Knutsen, Helle K

    2010-10-01

    Commercially used perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) have been widely detected in wildlife and humans, but the sources of human exposure are not fully characterized. The objectives of this study were to explore possible associations between concentrations of PFCs in serum and consumption of food with particular focus on seafood, and to compare estimated dietary intakes with determined serum PFC concentrations. Concentrations of 19 PFCs were determined in serum from 175 participants in the Norwegian Fish and Game Study and evaluated with respect to food consumption using multiple linear regression analysis. Associations between estimated individual total dietary intakes of PFCs and serum concentrations were also explored. PFC concentrations in serum were significantly associated (p<0.05) with the consumption of lean fish, fish liver, shrimps and meat, as well as age, breastfeeding history and area of residence (R(2) 0.35-0.63). The estimated dietary intakes of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluoroundecanoic acid (PFUnDA) and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS) were 0.60, 0.34 and 1.5 ng/kg body weight/day, respectively. Seafood (fish and shellfish) was the major dietary source contributing 38% of the estimated dietary intakes of PFOA, 93% of PFUnDA and 81% of PFOS. The estimated dietary intakes of these three selected PFCs were significantly associated with the corresponding serum PFC concentrations (p<0.05). In conclusion, our results show that consumption of fish and shellfish is a major determinant of serum PFC concentrations. Further, significant relationships between estimated dietary intakes and serum concentrations have been demonstrated for the first time. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Major West Indies MRSA clones in human beings: do they travel with their hosts?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chroboczek, Tomasz; Boisset, Sandrine; Rasigade, Jean-Philippe; Meugnier, Helene; Akpaka, Patrick E; Nicholson, Alison; Nicolas, Muriel; Olive, Claude; Bes, Michele; Vandenesch, François; Laurent, Frederic; Etienne, Jerome; Tristan, Anne

    2013-01-01

    Descriptions of the epidemiology of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) have seldom been produced in the Caribbean, which is a major tourism destination. Using DNA microarrays and spa typing, we characterized 85 MRSA isolates from human skin and soft-tissue infections from five different islands. In the French West Indies (n = 72), the most frequently isolated clones were the same clones that are specifically isolated from mainland France [Lyon (n = 35) and Geraldine (n = 11) clones], whereas the clones that were most frequently isolated from the other islands (n = 13) corresponded with clones that have a worldwide endemic spread [Vienna/Hungarian/Brazilian (n = 5), Panton Valentine leukocidin-positive USA300 (n = 4), New York/Japan (n = 2), and pediatric (n = 1) clones]. The distribution of the major MRSA clones in the French (Guadeloupe and Martinique) and non-French West Indies (Jamaica, Trinidad, and Tobago) is different, and the clones most closely resemble those found in the home countries of the travelers who visit the islands most frequently. The distribution might be affected by tourist migration, which is specific to each island. © 2013 International Society of Travel Medicine.

  16. Simultaneous determination of clobazam and its major metabolite in human plasma by a rapid HPLC method.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rouini, Mohammadreza; Ardakani, Yalda H; Hakemi, Lida; Mokhberi, Maryam; Badri, Gheise

    2005-09-05

    A rapid and specific HPLC method has been developed and validated for simultaneous determination of clobazam, the anticonvulsant agent, and its major metabolite in human plasma. The sample preparation was a liquid-liquid extraction with tuloene yielding almost near 100% recoveries of two compounds. Chromatographic separation was achieved with a Chromolith Performance RP-18e 100 mm x 4.6mm column, using a mixture of a phosphate buffer (pH 3.5; 10mM)-acetonitrile (70:30, v/v), in isocratic mode at 2 ml/min at a detection wave-length of 228 nm. The calibration curves were linear (r(2)>0.998) in the concentration range of 5-450 ng ml(-1). The lower limit of quantification was 5 ng ml(-1) for two compounds studied. The within- and between-day precisions in the measurement of QC samples at four tested concentrations were in the range of 0.89-9.1% and 2.1-10.1% R.S.D., respectively. The developed procedure was applied to assess the pharmacokinetics of clobazam and its major metabolite following administration of a single 10mg oral dose of clobazam to healthy volunteers.

  17. The importance of selecting a proper biological milieu for protein corona analysis in vitro: Human plasma versus human serum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirshafiee, Vahid; Kim, Raehyun; Mahmoudi, Morteza; Kraft, Mary L

    2016-06-01

    Nanoparticle (NP) exposure to biological fluids in the body results in protein binding to the NP surface, which forms a protein coating that is called the "protein corona". To simplify studies of protein-NP interactions and protein corona formation, NPs are incubated with biological solutions, such as human serum or human plasma, and the effects of this exposure are characterized in vitro. Yet, how NP exposure to these two different biological milieus affects protein corona composition and cell response has not been investigated. Here, we explore the differences between the protein coronas that form when NPs are incubated in human serum versus human plasma. NP characterization indicated that NPs that were exposed to human plasma had higher amounts of proteins bound to their surfaces, and were slightly larger in size than those exposed to human serum. In addition, significant differences in corona composition were also detected with gel electrophoresis and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry, where a higher fraction of coagulation proteins and complement factors were found on the plasma-exposed NPs. Flow cytometry and confocal microscopy showed that the uptake of plasma-exposed NPs was higher than that of serum-exposed NPs by RAW 264.7 macrophage immune cells, but not by NIH 3T3 fibroblast cells. This difference is likely due to the elevated amounts of opsonins, such as fibrinogen, on the surfaces of the NPs exposed to plasma, but not serum, because these components trigger NP internalization by immune cells. As the human plasma better mimics the composition of the in vivo environment, namely blood, in vitro protein corona studies should employ human plasma, and not human serum, so the biological phenomena that is observed is more similar to that occurring in vivo.

  18. BioCore Guide: A Tool for Interpreting the Core Concepts of Vision and Change for Biology Majors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownell, Sara E; Freeman, Scott; Wenderoth, Mary Pat; Crowe, Alison J

    2014-01-01

    Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education outlined five core concepts intended to guide undergraduate biology education: 1) evolution; 2) structure and function; 3) information flow, exchange, and storage; 4) pathways and transformations of energy and matter; and 5) systems. We have taken these general recommendations and created a Vision and Change BioCore Guide-a set of general principles and specific statements that expand upon the core concepts, creating a framework that biology departments can use to align with the goals of Vision and Change. We used a grassroots approach to generate the BioCore Guide, beginning with faculty ideas as the basis for an iterative process that incorporated feedback from more than 240 biologists and biology educators at a diverse range of academic institutions throughout the United States. The final validation step in this process demonstrated strong national consensus, with more than 90% of respondents agreeing with the importance and scientific accuracy of the statements. It is our hope that the BioCore Guide will serve as an agent of change for biology departments as we move toward transforming undergraduate biology education. © 2014 S. E. Brownell et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2014 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  19. Oligosaccharide structure and amino acid sequence of the major glycopeptides of mature human. beta. -hexosaminidase

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    O' Dowd, B.F.; Cumming, D.A.; Gravel, R.A.; Mahuran, D.

    1988-07-12

    Human ..beta..-hexosaminidase is a lysosomal enzyme that hydrolyzes terminal N-acetylhexosamines from GM/sub 2/ ganglioside, oligosaccharides, and other carbohydrate-containing macromolecules. There are two major forms of hexosaminidase: hexosaminidase A, with the structure ..cap alpha..(..beta../sub a/..beta../sub b/), and hexosaminidase B, 2(..beta../sub a/..beta../sub b/). Like other lysosomal proteins, hexosaminidase is targeted to its destination via glycosylation and processing in the rough endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi apparatus. Phosphorylation of specific mannose residues allows binding of the protein to the phosphomannosyl receptor and transfer to the lysosome. In order to define the structure and placement of the oligosaccharides in mature hexosaminidase and thus identify candidate mannose 6-phosphate recipient sites, the major tryptic/chymotryptic glycopeptides from each isozyme were purified by reverse-phase high-performance liquid chromatography. Two major concanavalin A binding glycopeptides, localized to the ..beta../sub b/f chain, and one non concanavalin A binding glycopeptide, localized to the ..beta../sub a/ chain, were found associated with the ..beta..-subunit in both hexosaminidase A and hexosaminidase B. The oligosaccharide structures were determined by nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometry. The unique glycopeptide associated with the ..beta../sub a/ chain contained a single GlcNAc residue. Thus all three mature polypeptides comprising the ..cap alpha.. and ..beta.. subunits of hexosaminidase contain carbohydrate, the structures of which have the appearance of being partially degraded in the lysosome. In the ..cap alpha.. chain they found only one possible site for in vivo phosphorylation. In the ..beta.. it is unclear if only one or all three of the sites could have contained phosphate. However, mature placental hexosaminidase A and B can be rephosphorylated in vitro. This requires the presence of an oligosaccharide containing an ..cap

  20. Comparative genomics of Tunisian Leishmania major isolates causing human cutaneous leishmaniasis with contrasting clinical severity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghouila, Amel; Guerfali, Fatma Z; Atri, Chiraz; Bali, Aymen; Attia, Hanene; Sghaier, Rabiaa M; Mkannez, Ghada; Dickens, Nicholas J; Laouini, Dhafer

    2017-06-01

    Zoonotic cutaneous leishmaniasis caused by Leishmania (L.) major parasites affects urban and suburban areas in the center and south of Tunisia where the disease is endemo-epidemic. Several cases were reported in human patients for which infection due to L. major induced lesions with a broad range of severity. However, very little is known about the mechanisms underlying this diversity. Our hypothesis is that parasite genomic variability could, in addition to the host immunological background, contribute to the intra-species clinical variability observed in patients and explain the lesion size differences observed in the experimental model. Based on several epidemiological, in vivo and in vitro experiments, we focused on two clinical isolates showing contrasted severity in patients and BALB/c experimental mice model. We used DNA-seq as a high-throughput technology to facilitate the identification of genetic variants with discriminating potential between both isolates. Our results demonstrate that various levels of heterogeneity could be found between both L. major isolates in terms of chromosome or gene copy number variation (CNV), and that the intra-species divergence could surprisingly be related to single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and Insertion/Deletion (InDels) events. Interestingly, we particularly focused here on genes affected by both types of variants and correlated them with the observed gene CNV. Whether these differences are sufficient to explain the severity in patients is obviously still open to debate, but we do believe that additional layers of -omic information is needed to complement the genomic screen in order to draw a more complete map of severity determinants.

  1. Overexpression of the human major vault protein in astrocytic brain tumor cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, W; Spiegl-Kreinecker, S; Buchroithner, J; Elbling, L; Pirker, C; Fischer, J; Micksche, M

    2001-11-01

    Evidence has shown that the major human vault protein (MVP), which is identical to lung resistance-related protein (LRP), may be causally involved in a special type of multidrug resistance (MDR). The purpose of this study was to investigate the expression and cellular localization of MVP in cells derived from brain tumors and other tumors of neuroectodermal origin. Using both established cell lines (n = 22) and primary explants (n = 30), we show that a distinct overexpression of the MVP gene at the mRNA (RT-PCR) and protein (Western blot) levels is a characteristic feature of cells derived from astrocytic brain tumors. Primary cultures obtained from meningioma specimens also expressed high MVP levels, in contrast to neuroblastoma and medulloblastoma cells, which rarely contained detectable amounts of MVP. Normal human astrocytes cultured in vitro expressed MVP, although at low amounts compared with most malignant cell types. Basal MVP expression correlated with resistance against diverse antineoplastic drugs including anthracyclins, cisplatin and etoposide. By Western blot, MVP was also detected in all tumor samples taken from 7 glioma and 3 meningioma patients. Taken together, these data suggest overexpression of MVP as one explanation for the low efficacy of chemotherapeutic treatment of astrocytic brain tumors. Copyright 2001 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  2. Human Herpesvirus 7 U21 Tetramerizes To Associate with Class I Major Histocompatibility Complex Molecules

    Science.gov (United States)

    May, Nathan A.; Wang, Qiuhong; Balbo, Andrea; Konrad, Sheryl L.; Buchli, Rico; Hildebrand, William H.; Schuck, Peter

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT The U21 gene product from human herpesvirus 7 binds to and redirects class I major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules to a lysosomal compartment. The molecular mechanism by which U21 reroutes class I MHC molecules to lysosomes is not known. Here, we have reconstituted the interaction between purified soluble U21 and class I MHC molecules, suggesting that U21 does not require additional cellular proteins to interact with class I MHC molecules. Our results demonstrate that U21, itself predicted to contain an MHC class I-like protein fold, interacts tightly with class I MHC molecules as a tetramer, in a 4:2 stoichiometry. These observations have helped to elucidate a refined model describing the mechanism by which U21 escorts class I MHC molecules to the lysosomal compartment. IMPORTANCE In this report, we show that the human herpesvirus 7 (HHV-7) immunoevasin U21, itself a class I MHC-like protein, binds with high affinity to class I MHC molecules as a tetramer and escorts them to lysosomes, where they are degraded. While many class I MHC-like molecules have been described in detail, this unusual viral class I-like protein functions as a tetramer, associating with class I MHC molecules in a 4:2 ratio, illuminating a functional significance of homooligomerization of a class I MHC-like protein. PMID:24390327

  3. Biologic

    CERN Document Server

    Kauffman, L H

    2002-01-01

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

  4. Major Links.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Tona

    1995-01-01

    Provides electronic mail addresses for resources and discussion groups related to the following academic majors: art, biology, business, chemistry, computer science, economics, health sciences, history, literature, math, music, philosophy, political science, psychology, sociology, and theater. (AEF)

  5. Glycerol: An unexpected major metabolite of energy metabolism by the human malaria parasite

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bray Patrick G

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malaria is a global health emergency, and yet our understanding of the energy metabolism of the principle causative agent of this devastating disease, Plasmodium falciparum, remains rather basic. Glucose was shown to be an essential nutritional requirement nearly 100 years ago and since this original observation, much of the current knowledge of Plasmodium energy metabolism is based on early biochemical work, performed using basic analytical techniques (e.g. paper chromatography, carried out almost exclusively on avian and rodent malaria. Data derived from malaria parasite genome and transcriptome studies suggest that the energy metabolism of the parasite may be more complex than hitherto anticipated. This study was undertaken in order to further characterize the fate of glucose catabolism in the human malaria parasite, P. falciparum. Methods Products of glucose catabolism were determined by incubating erythrocyte-freed parasites with D-[1-13C] glucose under controlled conditions and metabolites were identified using 13C-NMR spectroscopy. Results Following a 2 h incubation of freed-P. falciparum parasites with 25 mM D-[1-13C] glucose (n = 4, the major metabolites identified included; [3-13C] lactate, [1,3-13C] glycerol, [3-13C] pyruvate, [3-13C] alanine and [3-13C] glycerol-3-phosphate. Control experiments performed with uninfected erythrocytes incubated under identical conditions did not show any metabolism of D-[1-13C] glucose to glycerol or glycerol-3-phosphate. Discussion The identification of glycerol as a major glucose metabolite confirms the view that energy metabolism in this parasite is more complex than previously proposed. It is hypothesized here that glycerol production by the malaria parasite is the result of a metabolic adaptation to growth in O2-limited (and CO2 elevated conditions by the operation of a glycerol-3-phosphate shuttle for the re-oxidation of assimilatory NADH. Similar metabolic adaptations have

  6. Comparative systems biology between human and animal models based on next-generation sequencing methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Yu-Qi; Li, Gong-Hua; Huang, Jing-Fei

    2013-04-01

    Animal models provide myriad benefits to both experimental and clinical research. Unfortunately, in many situations, they fall short of expected results or provide contradictory results. In part, this can be the result of traditional molecular biological approaches that are relatively inefficient in elucidating underlying molecular mechanism. To improve the efficacy of animal models, a technological breakthrough is required. The growing availability and application of the high-throughput methods make systematic comparisons between human and animal models easier to perform. In the present study, we introduce the concept of the comparative systems biology, which we define as "comparisons of biological systems in different states or species used to achieve an integrated understanding of life forms with all their characteristic complexity of interactions at multiple levels". Furthermore, we discuss the applications of RNA-seq and ChIP-seq technologies to comparative systems biology between human and animal models and assess the potential applications for this approach in the future studies.

  7. Human evolution. Evolution of early Homo: an integrated biological perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antón, Susan C; Potts, Richard; Aiello, Leslie C

    2014-07-04

    Integration of evidence over the past decade has revised understandings about the major adaptations underlying the origin and early evolution of the genus Homo. Many features associated with Homo sapiens, including our large linear bodies, elongated hind limbs, large energy-expensive brains, reduced sexual dimorphism, increased carnivory, and unique life history traits, were once thought to have evolved near the origin of the genus in response to heightened aridity and open habitats in Africa. However, recent analyses of fossil, archaeological, and environmental data indicate that such traits did not arise as a single package. Instead, some arose substantially earlier and some later than previously thought. From ~2.5 to 1.5 million years ago, three lineages of early Homo evolved in a context of habitat instability and fragmentation on seasonal, intergenerational, and evolutionary time scales. These contexts gave a selective advantage to traits, such as dietary flexibility and larger body size, that facilitated survival in shifting environments.

  8. Biospheric Life Support - integrating biological regeneration into protection of humans in space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocha, Mauricio; Iha, Koshun

    2016-07-01

    retirement (2016). The extension will allow partner agencies to deploy new experiments there, resuming basic research focusing more forward-looking goals. For deep-space, since consumables logistics becomes more difficult- and habitability an issue, with diminishing Earth's view, further research has been recommended. Four major areas have been identified for human protection: (1) radiation mitigation; (2) highly recyclable bio-regenerative (BR) LSS; (3) micro-gravity countermeasures- including artificial gravity (AG), and (4) psychological safety. To contribute to the efforts to address these issues, a basic lab/virtual iterative research has been proposed, assuming (in a worst case scenario) that: I) It won't be possible to send people to long deep space missions, safely, with the current (low quality of life) support technology (ISS micro-gravity 'up-gradings'); II) The alternative to implant a Mars surface human supportive biosphere would also not be possible, due to environmental/ evolutionary restraints (life could adapt and survive, but not necessarily to favor humans). From the above considerations arises the question: Would an average approach be possible where, by applying the artificial gravity concept to S/Cs, a fragment of Earth bio-regenerative environment could be integrated inside reusable manned vehicles- thus enhancing its habitability/autonomy in long deep space missions? For this research question a provisory answer/hypothesis has been provided. And to test it, a small AG+BR bench simulator (plus computer methods) has been devised.

  9. Biological psychological and social determinants of old age: Bio-psycho-social aspects of human aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Małgorzata Dziechciaż

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Biological psychological and social determinants of old age: Bio-psycho-social aspects of human aging. The aging of humans is a physiological and dynamic process ongoing with time. In accordance with most gerontologists’ assertions it starts in the fourth decade of life and leads to death. The process of human aging is complex and individualized, occurs in the biological, psychological and social sphere. Biological aging is characterized by progressive age-changes in metabolism and physicochemical properties of cells, leading to impaired self-regulation, regeneration, and to structural changes and functional tissues and organs. It is a natural and irreversible process which can run as successful aging, typical or pathological. Biological changes that occur with age in the human body affect mood, attitude to the environment, physical condition and social activity, and designate the place of seniors in the family and society. Psychical ageing refers to human awareness and his adaptability to the ageing process. Among adaptation attitudes we can differentiate: constructive, dependence, hostile towards others and towards self attitudes. With progressed age, difficulties with adjustment to the new situation are increasing, adverse changes in the cognitive and intellectual sphere take place, perception process involutes, perceived sensations and information received is lowered, and thinking processes change. Social ageing is limited to the role of an old person is culturally conditioned and may change as customs change. Social ageing refers to how a human being perceives the ageing process and how society sees it.

  10. Mitochondrial biology. Replication-transcription switch in human mitochondria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agaronyan, Karen; Morozov, Yaroslav I; Anikin, Michael; Temiakov, Dmitry

    2015-01-30

    Coordinated replication and expression of the mitochondrial genome is critical for metabolically active cells during various stages of development. However, it is not known whether replication and transcription can occur simultaneously without interfering with each other and whether mitochondrial DNA copy number can be regulated by the transcription machinery. We found that interaction of human transcription elongation factor TEFM with mitochondrial RNA polymerase and nascent transcript prevents the generation of replication primers and increases transcription processivity and thereby serves as a molecular switch between replication and transcription, which appear to be mutually exclusive processes in mitochondria. TEFM may allow mitochondria to increase transcription rates and, as a consequence, respiration and adenosine triphosphate production without the need to replicate mitochondrial DNA, as has been observed during spermatogenesis and the early stages of embryogenesis.

  11. Human pressures predict species' geographic range size better than biological traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Marco, Moreno; Santini, Luca

    2015-06-01

    Geographic range size is the manifestation of complex interactions between intrinsic species traits and extrinsic environmental conditions. It is also a fundamental ecological attribute of species and a key extinction risk correlate. Past research has primarily focused on the role of biological and environmental predictors of range size, but macroecological patterns can also be distorted by human activities. Here, we analyse the role of extrinsic (biogeography, habitat state, climate, human pressure) and intrinsic (biology) variables in predicting range size of the world's terrestrial mammals. In particular, our aim is to compare the predictive ability of human pressure vs. species biology. We evaluated the ability of 19 intrinsic and extrinsic variables in predicting range size for 4867 terrestrial mammals. We repeated the analyses after excluding restricted-range species and performed separate analyses for species in different biogeographic realms and taxonomic groups. Our model had high predictive ability and showed that climatic variables and human pressures are the most influential predictors of range size. Interestingly, human pressures predict current geographic range size better than biological traits. These findings were confirmed when repeating the analyses on large-ranged species, individual biogeographic regions and individual taxonomic groups. Climatic and human impacts have determined the extinction of mammal species in the past and are the main factors shaping the present distribution of mammals. These factors also affect other vertebrate groups globally, and their influence on range size may be similar as well. Measuring climatic and human variables can allow to obtain approximate range size estimations for data-deficient and newly discovered species (e.g. hundreds of mammal species worldwide). Our results support the need for a more careful consideration of the role of climate change and human impact - as opposed to species biological

  12. The biological basis of non-invasive strategies for selection of human oocytes and embryos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Lynette

    2003-01-01

    There is a need for more accurate embryo selection in human assisted reproduction, if the goal of reducing the number of embryos used in embryo transfer is to be realized. Furthermore, any selection strategy should be non-invasive if the embryos are to be used in embryo transfer. Currently, the strategy is selection by one to three parameters in the cleaving- and blastocyst-stage embryo, sometimes with additional pronuclear selection. It is clear that no one system is ideal, as the vast majority of transferred embryos do not implant. As the health of the embryo is largely dictated by the originating gametes, the very early events in oocyte development should be considered. This review will point to the early biological events in the unfertilized and fertilized oocyte that can be scored non-invasively and which can have a profound effect on the later developmental stages. Using a sequential scoring system, with emphasis on the oocyte, a system for selecting the most viable single embryo for transfer may hopefully be achieved.

  13. Constrained solution scattering modelling of human antibodies and complement proteins reveals novel biological insights.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perkins, Stephen J; Okemefuna, Azubuike I; Nan, Ruodan; Li, Keying; Bonner, Alexandra

    2009-10-06

    X-ray and neutron-scattering techniques characterize proteins in solution and complement high-resolution structural studies. They are useful when either a large protein cannot be crystallized, in which case scattering yields a solution structure, or a crystal structure has been determined and requires validation in solution. These solution structures are determined by the application of constrained modelling methods based on known subunit structures. First, an appropriate starting model is generated. Next, its conformation is randomized to generate thousands of models for trial-and-error fits. Comparison with the experimental data identifies a small family of best-fit models. Finally, their significance for biological function is assessed. We illustrate this in application to structure determinations for secretory immunoglobulin A, the most prevalent antibody in the human body and a first line of defence in mucosal immunity. We also discuss the applications to the large multi-domain proteins of the complement system, most notably its major regulator factor H, which is important in age-related macular degeneration and renal diseases. We discuss the importance of complementary data from analytical ultracentrifugation, and structural studies of protein-protein complexes. We conclude that constrained scattering modelling makes useful contributions to our understanding of antibody and complement structure and function.

  14. The biological basis of human sexual orientation: is there a role for epigenetics?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ngun, Tuck C; Vilain, Eric

    2014-01-01

    Sexual orientation is one of the largest sex differences in humans. The vast majority of the population is heterosexual, that is, they are attracted to members of the opposite sex. However, a small but significant proportion of people are bisexual or homosexual and experience attraction to members of the same sex. The origins of the phenomenon have long been the subject of scientific study. In this chapter, we will review the evidence that sexual orientation has biological underpinnings and consider the involvement of epigenetic mechanisms. We will first discuss studies that show that sexual orientation has a genetic component. These studies show that sexual orientation is more concordant in monozygotic twins than in dizygotic ones and that male sexual orientation is linked to several regions of the genome. We will then highlight findings that suggest a link between sexual orientation and epigenetic mechanisms. In particular, we will consider the case of women with congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH). These women were exposed to high levels of testosterone in utero and have much higher rates of nonheterosexual orientation compared to non-CAH women. Studies in animal models strongly suggest that the long-term effects of hormonal exposure (such as those experienced by CAH women) are mediated by epigenetic mechanisms. We conclude by describing a hypothetical framework that unifies genetic and epigenetic explanations of sexual orientation and the continued challenges facing sexual orientation research. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. MORPHIN: a web tool for human disease research by projecting model organism biology onto a human integrated gene network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Sohyun; Kim, Eiru; Yang, Sunmo; Marcotte, Edward M; Lee, Insuk

    2014-07-01

    Despite recent advances in human genetics, model organisms are indispensable for human disease research. Most human disease pathways are evolutionally conserved among other species, where they may phenocopy the human condition or be associated with seemingly unrelated phenotypes. Much of the known gene-to-phenotype association information is distributed across diverse databases, growing rapidly due to new experimental techniques. Accessible bioinformatics tools will therefore facilitate translation of discoveries from model organisms into human disease biology. Here, we present a web-based discovery tool for human disease studies, MORPHIN (model organisms projected on a human integrated gene network), which prioritizes the most relevant human diseases for a given set of model organism genes, potentially highlighting new model systems for human diseases and providing context to model organism studies. Conceptually, MORPHIN investigates human diseases by an orthology-based projection of a set of model organism genes onto a genome-scale human gene network. MORPHIN then prioritizes human diseases by relevance to the projected model organism genes using two distinct methods: a conventional overlap-based gene set enrichment analysis and a network-based measure of closeness between the query and disease gene sets capable of detecting associations undetectable by the conventional overlap-based methods. MORPHIN is freely accessible at http://www.inetbio.org/morphin.

  16. Evaluation of the biological differences of canine and human factor VIII in gene delivery: Implications in human hemophilia treatment

    Science.gov (United States)

    The canine is the most important large animal model for testing novel hemophilia A(HA) treatment. It is often necessary to use canine factor VIII (cFIII) gene or protein for the evaluation of HA treatment in the canine model. However, the different biological properties between cFVIII and human FVII...

  17. Evolution of Gender Differences in Post-Secondary Human Capital Investments: College Majors. Working Paper #03-11

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gemici, Ahu; Wiswall, Matthew

    2011-01-01

    Over the past 40 years, the level of human capital investments has changed substantially for men and women. Changes in the intensive margin of college major selection have been also been substantial, as the number of graduates in humanities, social science, and teaching has declined, and the number in science, engineering, and business has…

  18. Biological Effects of Culture Substrates on Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yohei Hayashi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, as human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs have been commonly cultured in feeder-free conditions, a number of cell culture substrates have been applied or developed. However, the functional roles of these substrates in maintaining hPSC self-renewal remain unclear. Here in this review, we summarize the types of these substrates and their effect on maintaining hPSC self-renewal. Endogenous extracellular matrix (ECM protein expression has been shown to be crucial in maintaining hPSC self-renewal. These ECM molecules interact with integrin cell-surface receptors and transmit their cellular signaling. We discuss the possible effect of integrin-mediated signaling pathways on maintaining hPSC self-renewal. Activation of integrin-linked kinase (ILK, which transmits ECM-integrin signaling to AKT (also known as protein kinase B, has been shown to be critical in maintaining hPSC self-renewal. Also, since naïve pluripotency has been widely recognized as an alternative pluripotent state of hPSCs, we discuss the possible effects of culture substrates and integrin signaling on naïve hPSCs based on the studies of mouse embryonic stem cells. Understanding the role of culture substrates in hPSC self-renewal and differentiation enables us to control hPSC behavior precisely and to establish scalable or microfabricated culture technologies for regenerative medicine and drug development.

  19. A quantum biological hypothesis of human secondary dentinogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moss, M L; Moss-Salentijn, L; Hasselgren, G; Ling, H

    2005-01-01

    It is hypothesized that human coronal secondary dentin (SD) is a final classical mechanical (CM) response to a chain of prior quantum mechanical (QM) transductions of the information of initial CM occlusal loadings of enamel. Such CM energy is transduced into QM quanta (as protons) that are translocated centripetally via clustered water (CW), (as "proton wires"), that is structurally related to both enamel prism sheath and hydroxyapatite crystal hydration shells. These quanta pass into odontoblastic cell processes (OP), lying within dentinal tubules (DT). OP's contain abundant parallel arrays of cylindrical microtubules (MT). These are the sites of two further CW-related QM events: (i) proton translocation associated with conformal changes of MT tubulin protein dimers; and (ii) coherent energetic oscillations within the CW filling the MT's hollow cores. Finally, these quanta pass into the odontoblastic soma, where QM wave function collapse transduces this information into a final CM state that initiates the processes of SD formation. A critical portion of this hypothesis may be experimentally tested.

  20. A biologically plausible model of human shape symmetry perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poirier, Frédéric J A M; Wilson, Hugh R

    2010-01-19

    Symmetry is usually computationally expensive to encode reliably, and yet it is relatively effortless to perceive. Here, we extend F. J. A. M. Poirier and H. R. Wilson's (2006) model for shape perception to account for H. R. Wilson and F. Wilkinson's (2002) data on shape symmetry. Because the model already accounts for shape perception, only minimal neural circuitry is required to enable it to encode shape symmetry as well. The model is composed of three main parts: (1) recovery of object position using large-scale non-Fourier V4-like concentric units that respond at the center of concentric contour segments across orientations, (2) around that recovered object center, curvature mechanisms combine multiplicatively the responses of oriented filters to encode object-centric local shape information, with a preference for convexities, and (3) object-centric symmetry mechanisms. Model and human performances are comparable for symmetry perception of shapes. Moreover, with some improvement of edge recovery, the model can encode symmetry axes in natural images such as faces.

  1. Screening for the synthetic cannabinoid JWH-018 and its major metabolites in human doping controls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Möller, Ines; Wintermeyer, Annette; Bender, Katja; Jübner, Martin; Thomas, Andreas; Krug, Oliver; Schänzer, Wilhelm; Thevis, Mario

    2011-09-01

    Referred to as 'spice', several new drugs, advertised as herbal blends, have appeared on the market in the last few years, in which the synthetic cannabinoids JWH-018 and a C(8) homologue of CP 47,497 were identified as major active ingredients. Due to their reported cannabis-like effects, many European countries have banned these substances. The World Anti-Doping Agency has also explicitly prohibited synthetic cannabinoids in elite sport in-competition. Since urine specimens have been the preferred doping control samples, the elucidation of the metabolic pathways of these substances is of particular importance to implement them in sports drug testing programmes. In a recent report, an in vitro phase-I metabolism study of JWH-018 was presented yielding mainly hydroxylated and N-dealkylated metabolites. Due to these findings, a urine sample of a healthy man declaring to have smoked a 'spice' product was screened for potential phase-I and -II metabolites by high-resolution/high-accuracy mass spectrometry in the present report. The majority of the phase-I metabolites observed in earlier in vitro studies of JWH-018 were detected in this urine specimen and furthermore most of their respective monoglucuronides. As no intact JWH-018 was detectable, the monohydroxylated metabolite being the most abundant one was chosen as a target analyte for sports drug testing purposes; a detection method was subsequently developed and validated in accordance to conventional screening protocols based on enzymatic hydrolysis, liquid-liquid extraction, and liquid chromatography/electrospray tandem mass spectrometry analysis. The method was applied to approximately 7500 urine doping control samples yielding two JWH-018 findings and demonstrated its capability for a sensitive and selective identification of JWH-018 and its metabolites in human urine.

  2. MicroRNA expression profile in human macrophages in response to Leishmania major infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julien Lemaire

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Leishmania (L. are intracellular protozoan parasites able to survive and replicate in the hostile phagolysosomal environment of infected macrophages. They cause leishmaniasis, a heterogeneous group of worldwide-distributed affections, representing a paradigm of neglected diseases that are mainly embedded in impoverished populations. To establish successful infection and ensure their own survival, Leishmania have developed sophisticated strategies to subvert the host macrophage responses. Despite a wealth of gained crucial information, these strategies still remain poorly understood. MicroRNAs (miRNAs, an evolutionarily conserved class of endogenous 22-nucleotide non-coding RNAs, are described to participate in the regulation of almost every cellular process investigated so far. They regulate the expression of target genes both at the levels of mRNA stability and translation; changes in their expression have a profound effect on their target transcripts. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We report in this study a comprehensive analysis of miRNA expression profiles in L. major-infected human primary macrophages of three healthy donors assessed at different time-points post-infection (three to 24 h. We show that expression of 64 out of 365 analyzed miRNAs was consistently deregulated upon infection with the same trends in all donors. Among these, several are known to be induced by TLR-dependent responses. GO enrichment analysis of experimentally validated miRNA-targeted genes revealed that several pathways and molecular functions were disturbed upon parasite infection. Finally, following parasite infection, miR-210 abundance was enhanced in HIF-1α-dependent manner, though it did not contribute to inhibiting anti-apoptotic pathways through pro-apoptotic caspase-3 regulation. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our data suggest that alteration in miRNA levels likely plays an important role in regulating macrophage functions following L. major

  3. Determination of cadmium and lead in human biological samples by spectrometric techniques: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemos, Valfredo Azevedo; de Carvalho, Anaildes Lago

    2010-12-01

    The analysis of human biological samples, such as blood, urine, nails, and hair, is generally used for the verification of human exposure to toxic metals. In this review, various spectrometric methods for the determination of cadmium and lead in biological samples are discussed and compared. Several spectrometric techniques are presented and discussed with respect to various characteristics such as sensitivity, selectivity, and cost. Special attention is drawn to the procedures for digestion prior to the determination of cadmium and lead in hair, nails, blood, and urine.

  4. Establishing a cell biology platform: isolation and preservation of human blood products

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    Dissertação para obtenção do Grau de Mestre em Genética Molecular e Biomedicina The use of human primary cells provide researchers in different areas with irrefutable more biologically relevant data than using cell lines or animal blood cells. The work was performed in the scope of the Cell Biology Services @ CEDOC, aiming to provide viable and trustful human primary cells and products. We had three main objectives: protocol optimizations for blood cell isolation, culture and cryopre...

  5. Humans have already increased the risk of major disruption to Pacific rainfall

    Science.gov (United States)

    Power, Scott; Delage, Francois; Chung, Christine; Ye, Harvey; Murphy, Brad

    2017-04-01

    Intermittent disruptions to rainfall patterns and intensity over the Pacific Ocean lasting up to approximately one year have major impacts on severe weather, agricultural production, ecosystems, and disease within the Pacific, and in many countries beyond. These disruptions are primarily driven by the El Niño/La Niña cycle, which is a naturally occurring phenomenon centered in the tropical Pacific. Recent research concluded that global warming under scenarios with further large increases in global greenhouse gas emissions will increase the frequency of disruptions to Pacific rainfall over the 21st century. Fortunately governments from around the world recently agreed to markedly reduce emissions over coming decades. But will these cuts be sufficient to prevent a human-forced increase in the risk of major disruption? And has the risk (i.e., likelihood) of major disruption driven by year-to-year rainfall variability already increased relative to pre-industrial times? These issues are addressed here (Power et al., Nature Communications, in press). We examined disruption in CMIP5 models under climatic conditions corresponding to the pre-industrial era, the historical period and the remainder of the 21st century under the RCP2.6, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios. RCP2.6 results in global warming in the late 21st century that is likely to be in the range of approximately 0.9-2.3°C (relative to the latter half of the 19th century). The equivalent figures for RCP8.5 are 3.2-5.4°C (IPCC 2014). We use a simple measure of disruption or volatility: the time evolving RMS difference in seasonal rainfall over the Pacific relative to a changing climatological value of seasonal rainfall. The CMIP5 models, the observations and an SST-forced AGCM all indicate that while both El Nino and La Nina can cause major disruptions, the largest disruptions occur during El Nino years. We also show that there is a 26% increase in the frequency of major disruptions in the models by the early

  6. Human cell structure-driven model construction for predicting protein subcellular location from biological images.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shao, Wei; Liu, Mingxia; Zhang, Daoqiang

    2016-01-01

    The systematic study of subcellular location pattern is very important for fully characterizing the human proteome. Nowadays, with the great advances in automated microscopic imaging, accurate bioimage-based classification methods to predict protein subcellular locations are highly desired. All existing models were constructed on the independent parallel hypothesis, where the cellular component classes are positioned independently in a multi-class classification engine. The important structural information of cellular compartments is missed. To deal with this problem for developing more accurate models, we proposed a novel cell structure-driven classifier construction approach (SC-PSorter) by employing the prior biological structural information in the learning model. Specifically, the structural relationship among the cellular components is reflected by a new codeword matrix under the error correcting output coding framework. Then, we construct multiple SC-PSorter-based classifiers corresponding to the columns of the error correcting output coding codeword matrix using a multi-kernel support vector machine classification approach. Finally, we perform the classifier ensemble by combining those multiple SC-PSorter-based classifiers via majority voting. We evaluate our method on a collection of 1636 immunohistochemistry images from the Human Protein Atlas database. The experimental results show that our method achieves an overall accuracy of 89.0%, which is 6.4% higher than the state-of-the-art method. The dataset and code can be downloaded from https://github.com/shaoweinuaa/. dqzhang@nuaa.edu.cn Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. Towards a systems biology understanding of human health: interplay between genotype, environment and nutrition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desiere, Frank

    2004-01-01

    Sequencing of the human genome has opened the door to the most exciting new era for the holistic system description of human health. It is now possible to study the underlying mechanisms of human health in relation to diet and other environmental factors such as drugs and toxic pollutants. Technological advances make it feasible to envisage that in the future personalized drug treatment and dietary advice and possibly tailored food products can be used for promoting optimal health on an individual basis, in relation to genotype and lifestyle. Life-Science research has in the past very much focused on diseases and how to reestablish human health after illness. Today, the role of food and nutrition in human health and especially prevention of illness is gaining recognition. Diseases of modern civilization, such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer have been shown to be effected by dietary patterns. The risk of disease is often associated with genetic polymorphisms, but the effect is dependent on dietary intake and nutritional status. To understand the link between diet and health, nutritional-research must cover a broad range of areas, from the molecular level to whole body studies. Therefore it provides an excellent example of integrative biology requiring a systems biology approach. The current state and implications of systems biology in the understanding of human health are reviewed. It becomes clear that a complete mechanistic description of the human organism is not yet possible. However, recent advances in systems biology provide a trajectory for future research in order to improve health of individuals and populations. Disease prevention through personalized nutrition will become more important as the obvious avenue of research in life sciences and more focus will need to be put upon those natural ways of disease prevention. In particular, the new discipline of nutrigenomics, which investigates how nutrients interact with humans, taking predetermined genetic

  8. Cracking the nodule worm code advances knowledge of parasite biology and biotechnology to tackle major diseases of livestock.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tyagi, Rahul; Joachim, Anja; Ruttkowski, Bärbel; Rosa, Bruce A; Martin, John C; Hallsworth-Pepin, Kymberlie; Zhang, Xu; Ozersky, Philip; Wilson, Richard K; Ranganathan, Shoba; Sternberg, Paul W; Gasser, Robin B; Mitreva, Makedonka

    2015-11-01

    Many infectious diseases caused by eukaryotic pathogens have a devastating, long-term impact on animal health and welfare. Hundreds of millions of animals are affected by parasitic nematodes of the order Strongylida. Unlocking the molecular biology of representatives of this order, and understanding nematode-host interactions, drug resistance and disease using advanced technologies could lead to entirely new ways of controlling the diseases that they cause. Oesophagostomum dentatum (nodule worm; superfamily Strongyloidea) is an economically important strongylid nematode parasite of swine worldwide. The present article reports recent advances made in biology and animal biotechnology through the draft genome and developmental transcriptome of O. dentatum, in order to support biological research of this and related parasitic nematodes as well as the search for new and improved interventions. This first genome of any member of the Strongyloidea is 443 Mb in size and predicted to encode 25,291 protein-coding genes. Here, we review the dynamics of transcription throughout the life cycle of O. dentatum, describe double-stranded RNA interference (RNAi) machinery and infer molecules involved in development and reproduction, and in inducing or modulating immune responses or disease. The secretome predicted for O. dentatum is particularly rich in peptidases linked to interactions with host tissues and/or feeding activity, and a diverse array of molecules likely involved in immune responses. This research progress provides an important resource for future comparative genomic and molecular biological investigations as well as for biotechnological research toward new anthelmintics, vaccines and diagnostic tests.

  9. Introducing Evolution to Non-Biology Majors via the Fossil Record: A Case Study from the Israeli High School System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dodick, Jeff; Orion, Nir

    2003-01-01

    Discusses challenges faced in the teaching and learning of evolution. Presents a curricular program and a case study on evolutionary biology. Investigates students' conceptual knowledge after exposure to the program "From Dinosaurs to Darwin," which focuses on fossil records as evidence of evolution. (Contains 32 references.) (YDS)

  10. Biological nitrogen fixation is not a major contributor to the nitrogen demand of a commercially growth South African sugarcane cultivar

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoefsloot, G.; Termorshuizen, A.J.; Watt, D.A.; Cramer, M.D.

    2005-01-01

    It has previously been reported that endophytic diazotrophic bacteria contribute significantly to the nitrogen budgets of some graminaceous species. In this study the contribution of biological nitrogen fixation to the N-budget of a South African sugarcane cultivar was evaluated using 15N natural ab

  11. A brief history of the Human Biology Association: 1974-2004.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Little, Michael A; James, Gary D

    2005-01-01

    Originally incorporated as the Human Biology Council in 1974, the Human Biology Association, as it has been known since 1994, has matured in the intervening 30 years to become a society that represents broadly the interests of human biologists in the U.S. and throughout the world. The purpose of this paper is to trace the development of the Association from its foundation to the present in the context of changes in the organization of the Association and in its By-Laws, officers, committees, and membership; the history of the two journals that served as the Association's official organs (Human Biology and American Journal of Human Biology); and how the annual meetings have evolved from a modest one-day plenary session to meetings that last more than two days and include a variety of scientific contributions. Highlights of the national meetings include the Raymond Pearl Memorial Lecture, the Franz Boas Distinguished Achievement Award, and the Edward E. Hunt, Jr. Student Prize. Copyright 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  12. Major terminologies and concepts in seed dispersal biology%种子传播生物学主要术语和概念

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    朱金雷; 刘志民

    2012-01-01

    种子传播是当今进化生物学、保护生物学和恢复生态学的研究热点之一,近年来发展迅速.但是国内相关研究起步较晚,人们还难以正确理解和使用很多种子传播术语和概念.因此,本文对种子传播生物学术语和概念进行了梳理,旨在完善种子传播生物学的中文概念和术语体系、促进传播生物学在我国的发展.%Seed dispersal is a research hotspot nowadays in evolutionary biology, conservation biology, and restoration biology, with a rapid development over the last two'decades in the world. However, little related research has been reported in China, and many terminologies and concepts in seed dispersal biology are hard understandable to relevant Chinese researchers. This paper collected the major terminologies and concepts in seed dispersal biology, aimed to contribute to constructing the framework of terminologies and concepts in seed dispersal biology and to hastening the seed dispersal research in China.

  13. Hybridization of two major termite invaders as a consequence of human activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chouvenc, Thomas; Helmick, Ericka E; Su, Nan-Yao

    2015-01-01

    While hybridization of an invasive species with a native species is a common occurrence, hybridization between two invasive species is rare. Formosan subterranean termites (Coptotermes formosanus) and Asian subterranean termites (C. gestroi) are both ecologically successful and are the two most economically important termite pests in the world. Both species have spread throughout many areas of the world due to human activity; however, their distributions overlap in only three narrow areas because of distinct ecological requirements. In south Florida, where C. formosanus and C. gestroi are both invasive, the dispersal flight seasons of both species overlapped for the first time on record in 2013 and 2014. Pairings of heterospecific individuals were readily observed in the field and C. gestroi males preferentially engaged in mating behavior with C. formosanus females rather than females from their own species. In the laboratory, heterospecific and conspecific pairings had an equal colony establishment rate, but heterospecific incipient colonies had twice the growth rate of conspecific incipient colonies, suggesting a potential case of hybrid vigor. As all pre-zygotic barriers were lifted between the two species in the field, the apparent absence of post-zygotic barriers in the laboratory raises the possibility for introgressive hybridization in south Florida. While laboratory observations remain to be confirmed in the field, and the alate hybrid fertility is currently unknown, our results raise a tangible concern about the hybridization of two major destructive pest species. Such hybridization would likely be associated with a new economic impact.

  14. Hybridization of two major termite invaders as a consequence of human activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Chouvenc

    Full Text Available While hybridization of an invasive species with a native species is a common occurrence, hybridization between two invasive species is rare. Formosan subterranean termites (Coptotermes formosanus and Asian subterranean termites (C. gestroi are both ecologically successful and are the two most economically important termite pests in the world. Both species have spread throughout many areas of the world due to human activity; however, their distributions overlap in only three narrow areas because of distinct ecological requirements. In south Florida, where C. formosanus and C. gestroi are both invasive, the dispersal flight seasons of both species overlapped for the first time on record in 2013 and 2014. Pairings of heterospecific individuals were readily observed in the field and C. gestroi males preferentially engaged in mating behavior with C. formosanus females rather than females from their own species. In the laboratory, heterospecific and conspecific pairings had an equal colony establishment rate, but heterospecific incipient colonies had twice the growth rate of conspecific incipient colonies, suggesting a potential case of hybrid vigor. As all pre-zygotic barriers were lifted between the two species in the field, the apparent absence of post-zygotic barriers in the laboratory raises the possibility for introgressive hybridization in south Florida. While laboratory observations remain to be confirmed in the field, and the alate hybrid fertility is currently unknown, our results raise a tangible concern about the hybridization of two major destructive pest species. Such hybridization would likely be associated with a new economic impact.

  15. Major Pesticides Are More Toxic to Human Cells Than Their Declared Active Principles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robin Mesnage

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Pesticides are used throughout the world as mixtures called formulations. They contain adjuvants, which are often kept confidential and are called inerts by the manufacturing companies, plus a declared active principle, which is usually tested alone. We tested the toxicity of 9 pesticides, comparing active principles and their formulations, on three human cell lines (HepG2, HEK293, and JEG3. Glyphosate, isoproturon, fluroxypyr, pirimicarb, imidacloprid, acetamiprid, tebuconazole, epoxiconazole, and prochloraz constitute, respectively, the active principles of 3 major herbicides, 3 insecticides, and 3 fungicides. We measured mitochondrial activities, membrane degradations, and caspases 3/7 activities. Fungicides were the most toxic from concentrations 300–600 times lower than agricultural dilutions, followed by herbicides and then insecticides, with very similar profiles in all cell types. Despite its relatively benign reputation, Roundup was among the most toxic herbicides and insecticides tested. Most importantly, 8 formulations out of 9 were up to one thousand times more toxic than their active principles. Our results challenge the relevance of the acceptable daily intake for pesticides because this norm is calculated from the toxicity of the active principle alone. Chronic tests on pesticides may not reflect relevant environmental exposures if only one ingredient of these mixtures is tested alone.

  16. Major pesticides are more toxic to human cells than their declared active principles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mesnage, Robin; Defarge, Nicolas; Spiroux de Vendômois, Joël; Séralini, Gilles-Eric

    2014-01-01

    Pesticides are used throughout the world as mixtures called formulations. They contain adjuvants, which are often kept confidential and are called inerts by the manufacturing companies, plus a declared active principle, which is usually tested alone. We tested the toxicity of 9 pesticides, comparing active principles and their formulations, on three human cell lines (HepG2, HEK293, and JEG3). Glyphosate, isoproturon, fluroxypyr, pirimicarb, imidacloprid, acetamiprid, tebuconazole, epoxiconazole, and prochloraz constitute, respectively, the active principles of 3 major herbicides, 3 insecticides, and 3 fungicides. We measured mitochondrial activities, membrane degradations, and caspases 3/7 activities. Fungicides were the most toxic from concentrations 300-600 times lower than agricultural dilutions, followed by herbicides and then insecticides, with very similar profiles in all cell types. Despite its relatively benign reputation, Roundup was among the most toxic herbicides and insecticides tested. Most importantly, 8 formulations out of 9 were up to one thousand times more toxic than their active principles. Our results challenge the relevance of the acceptable daily intake for pesticides because this norm is calculated from the toxicity of the active principle alone. Chronic tests on pesticides may not reflect relevant environmental exposures if only one ingredient of these mixtures is tested alone.

  17. Genetic diversity and molecular evolution of the major human metapneumovirus surface glycoproteins over a decade.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papenburg, Jesse; Carbonneau, Julie; Isabel, Sandra; Bergeron, Michel G; Williams, John V; De Serres, Gaston; Hamelin, Marie-Ève; Boivin, Guy

    2013-11-01

    Human metapneumovirus (HMPV) is a recently discovered paramyxovirus that is a major cause of respiratory infections worldwide. We aim to describe the molecular evolution of the HMPV F (fusion) and G (attachment) surface glycoproteins because they are targets for vaccines, monoclonal antibodies and antivirals currently in development. Nasopharyngeal aspirates were collected in children genetic lineages (A1, A2a, A2b, B1 and B2). Multiple lineages circulated each year in Quebec City. With the exception of B1, each of the 5 subgroups was the predominant lineage during ≥1 season. The A1 lineage was not detected since 2002-2003 in our local cohort. There was no evidence of inter- or intragenic recombination. HMPV-F was highly conserved, whereas HMPV-G exhibited greater diversity. HMPV-F demonstrated strong evidence of purifying selection, both overall and in an abundance of negatively selected amino acid sites. In contrast, sites under diversifying selection were detected in all HMPV-G lineages (range, 4-15), all of which were located in the ectodomain. Predominant circulating HMPV lineages vary by year. HMPV-F is highly constrained and undergoes significant purifying selection. Given its high genetic variability, we found a modest number of positively selected sites in HMPV-G. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. The Human Proteome Organization Chromosome 6 Consortium: integrating chromosome-centric and biology/disease driven strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borchers, C H; Kast, J; Foster, L J; Siu, K W M; Overall, C M; Binkowski, T A; Hildebrand, W H; Scherer, A; Mansoor, M; Keown, P A

    2014-04-04

    The Human Proteome Project (HPP) is designed to generate a comprehensive map of the protein-based molecular architecture of the human body, to provide a resource to help elucidate biological and molecular function, and to advance diagnosis and treatment of diseases. Within this framework, the chromosome-based HPP (C-HPP) has allocated responsibility for mapping individual chromosomes by country or region, while the biology/disease HPP (B/D-HPP) coordinates these teams in cross-functional disease-based groups. Chromosome 6 (Ch6) provides an excellent model for integration of these two tasks. This metacentric chromosome has a complement of 1002-1034 genes that code for known, novel or putative proteins. Ch6 is functionally associated with more than 120 major human diseases, many with high population prevalence, devastating clinical impact and profound societal consequences. The unique combination of genomic, proteomic, metabolomic, phenomic and health services data being drawn together within the Ch6 program has enormous potential to advance personalized medicine by promoting robust biomarkers, subunit vaccines and new drug targets. The strong liaison between the clinical and laboratory teams, and the structured framework for technology transfer and health policy decisions within Canada will increase the speed and efficacy of this transition, and the value of this translational research. Canada has been selected to play a leading role in the international Human Proteome Project, the global counterpart of the Human Genome Project designed to understand the structure and function of the human proteome in health and disease. Canada will lead an international team focusing on chromosome 6, which is functionally associated with more than 120 major human diseases, including immune and inflammatory disorders affecting the brain, skeletal system, heart and blood vessels, lungs, kidney, liver, gastrointestinal tract and endocrine system. Many of these chronic and persistent

  19. The large universal Pantoea plasmid LPP-1 plays a major role in biological and ecological diversification

    OpenAIRE

    De Maayer Pieter; Chan Wai-Yin; Blom Jochen; Venter Stephanus N; Duffy Brion; Smits Theo H M; Coutinho Teresa A

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Background Pantoea spp. are frequently isolated from a wide range of ecological niches and have various biological roles, as plant epi- or endophytes, biocontrol agents, plant-growth promoters or as pathogens of both plant and animal hosts. This suggests that members of this genus have undergone extensive genotypic diversification. One means by which this occurs among bacteria is through the acquisition and maintenance of plasmids. Here, we have analyzed and compared the sequences of...

  20. Kant on epigenesis, monogenesis and human nature: the biological premises of anthropology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Alix A

    2006-12-01

    The aim of this paper is to show that for Kant, a combination of epigenesis and monogenesis is the condition of possibility of anthropology as he conceives of it and that moreover, this has crucial implications for the biological dimension of his account of human nature. More precisely, I begin by arguing that Kant's conception of mankind as a natural species is based on two premises: firstly the biological unity of the human species (monogenesis of the human races); and secondly the existence of 'seeds' which may or may not develop depending on the environment (epigenesis of human natural predispositions). I then turn to Kant's account of man's natural predispositions and show that far from being limited to the issue of races, it encompasses unexpected human features such as gender, temperaments and nations. These predispositions, I argue, are means to the realisation of Nature's overall purpose for the human species. This allows me to conclude that man's biological determinism leads to the species' preservation, cultivation and civilisation.

  1. Critical values of the external magnetic field leading biological effects in the human organism

    CERN Document Server

    Kanokov, Zakirjon

    2013-01-01

    In the framework of the simplified stochastic model the critical values of an induction of the external magnetic field leading to sharp increase of fluctuations of a casual current of biologically important ions in different blood vessels of a human body are calculated.

  2. 78 FR 32668 - Draft Guidance for Industry: Changes to an Approved Application: Biological Products: Human Blood...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-05-31

    ...The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is announcing the availability of a draft document entitled ``Guidance for Industry: Changes to an Approved Application: Biological Products: Human Blood and Blood Components Intended for Transfusion or for Further Manufacture'' dated June 2013. The draft guidance document provides manufacturers of licensed Whole Blood and blood components intended for......

  3. Nutrition and the biology of human ageing: Proceedings of the ninth nestle international nutrition symposium

    Science.gov (United States)

    This 9th Nestle Nutrition Symposium on “Nutrition and the Biology of Human Ageing” is presented at a time of unprecedented demographic change worldwide. The UN population division forecasts that the number of people living over age 65 will rise to almost 1 billion (12% percent of the world’s populat...

  4. The Use of Ethical Frameworks for Implementing Science as a Human Endeavour in Year 10 Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yap, Siew Fong; Dawson, Vaille

    2014-01-01

    This research focuses on the use of ethical frameworks as a pedagogical model for socio-scientific education in implementing the "Science as a Human Endeavour" (SHE) strand of the Australian Curriculum: Science in a Year 10 biology class in a Christian college in metropolitan Perth, Western Australia. Using a case study approach, a mixed…

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scheepers, P.T.J.; Brederode, N.E. van; Bos, P.M.J.; Nijhuis, N.J.; Weerdt, R.H. van de; Woude, I. van der; Eggens, M.L.

    2014-01-01

    Biological monitoring in humans (HBM) is widely used in the field of occupational and environmental health. In the situation of an unexpected release of hazardous materials HBM may contribute to the medical support and treatment of exposed individuals from the general population or of emergency

  6. Biohorizons: An eConference to Assess Human Biology in Large, First-Year Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moni, Roger W.; Moni, Karen B.; Poronnik, Philip; Lluka, Lesley J.

    2007-01-01

    The authors detail the design, implementation and evaluation of an eConference entitled "Biohorizons," using a presage-process-product model to describe the development of an eLearning community. Biohorizons was a summative learning and assessment task aiming to introduce large classes of first-year Human Biology students to the practices of…

  7. Characterization of neutralizing epitopes within the major capsid protein of human papillomavirus type 33

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sapp Martin

    2006-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Infections with papillomaviruses induce type-specific immune responses, mainly directed against the major capsid protein, L1. Based on the propensity of the L1 protein to self-assemble into virus-like particles (VLPs, type-specific vaccines have already been developed. In order to generate vaccines that target a broader spectrum of HPV types, extended knowledge of neutralizing epitopes is required. Despite the association of human papillomavirus type 33 (HPV33 with cervical carcinomas, fine mapping of neutralizing conformational epitopes on HPV33 has not been reported yet. By loop swapping between HPV33 and HPV16 capsid proteins, we have identified amino acid sequences critical for the binding of conformation-dependent type-specific neutralizing antibodies to surface-exposed hyper variable loops of HPV33 capsid protein L1. Results Reactivities of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs H33.B6, H33.E12, H33.J3 and H16.56E with HPV16:33 and HPV33:16 hybrid L1 VLPs revealed the complex structures of their conformational epitopes as well as the major residues contributing to their binding sites. Whereas the epitope of mAb H33.J3 was determined by amino acids (aa 51–58 in the BC loop of HPV33 L1, sequences of at least two hyper variable loops, DE (aa 132–140 and FGb (aa 282–291, were found to be essential for binding of H33.B6. The epitope of H33.E12 was even more complex, requiring sequences of the FGa loop (aa 260–270, in addition to loops DE and FGb. Conclusion These data demonstrate that neutralizing epitopes in HPV33 L1 are mainly located on the tip of the capsomere and that several hyper variable loops contribute to form these conformational epitopes. Knowledge of the antigenic structure of HPV is crucial for designing hybrid particles as a basis for intertypic HPV vaccines.

  8. How do precision medicine and system biology response to human body's complex adaptability?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Bing

    2016-12-01

    In the field of life sciences, although system biology and "precision medicine" introduce some complex scientifific methods and techniques, it is still based on the "analysis-reconstruction" of reductionist theory as a whole. Adaptability of complex system increase system behaviour uncertainty as well as the difficulties of precise identifification and control. It also put systems biology research into trouble. To grasp the behaviour and characteristics of organism fundamentally, systems biology has to abandon the "analysis-reconstruction" concept. In accordance with the guidelines of complexity science, systems biology should build organism model from holistic level, just like the Chinese medicine did in dealing with human body and disease. When we study the living body from the holistic level, we will fifind the adaptability of complex system is not the obstacle that increases the diffificulty of problem solving. It is the "exceptional", "right-hand man" that helping us to deal with the complexity of life more effectively.

  9. In vivo biological response to extracorporeal shockwave therapy in human tendinopathy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Waugh, C. M.; Morrissey, D.; Jones, E.

    2015-01-01

    Extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT) is a non-invasive treatment for chronic tendinopathies, however little is known about the in-vivo biological mechanisms of ESWT. Using microdialysis, we examined the real-time biological response of healthy and pathological tendons to ESWT. A single session...... significantly elevated for four hours post-ESWT (p biological response to ESWT treatment could be differentiated between possible responders and non......-responders based on a minimum 5-fold increase in any inflammatory marker or MMP from pre- to post-ESWT. Our findings provide novel evidence of the biological mechanisms underpinning ESWT in humans in vivo. They suggest that the mechanical stimulus provided by ESWT might aid tendon remodelling in tendinopathy...

  10. HExpoChem: a systems biology resource to explore human exposure to chemicals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Taboureau, Olivier; Jacobsen, Ulrik Plesner; Kalhauge, Christian Gram

    2013-01-01

    of computational biology approaches are needed to assess the health risks of chemical exposure. Here we present HExpoChem, a tool based on environmental chemicals and their bioactivities on human proteins with the objective of aiding the qualitative exploration of human exposure to chemicals. The chemical......Summary: Humans are exposed to diverse hazardous chemicals daily. Although an exposure to these chemicals is suspected to have adverse effects on human health, mechanistic insights into how they interact with the human body are still limited. Therefore, acquisition of curated data and development......–protein interactions have been enriched with a quality-scored human protein–protein interaction network, a protein–protein association network and a chemical–chemical interaction network, thus allowing the study of environmental chemicals through formation of protein complexes and phenotypic outcomes enrichment...

  11. Vaccines against human papillomaviruses--a major breakthrough in cancer prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vonka, Vladimír; Hamsíková, Eva

    2007-12-01

    Carcinoma of the cervix (CaCer) is the second most frequent malignancy in women on a global scale. Epidemiological studies carried out at the beginning of the second half of the 20th century showed that CaCer was of infectious nature and that its agent was transmitted by sexual intercourse. For some 15 years, herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV2), the genital herpes virus, was suspected to be the etiological agent. This hypothesis was disproved just in the time when the first convincing evidence that the agents of the disease were human papillomaviruses (HPVs) was produced. Copious new findings obtained during the 1980's and 1990's unequivocally confirmed that HPVs were the causative agents. The most dangerous among the over 100 HPV types are types 16 and 18, which together account for over 70% of CaCer cases and very likely also for most of the other malignancies of the anogenital region and the oropharynx. Extensive research of the HPV biology and immunology enabled the development of vaccines based on the s.c. virus-like particles (VLP) prepared by genetic engineering. At present, there is one HPV vaccine on the market; it contains, besides types 16 and 18, also types 6 and 11, the causative agents of certain benign tumours of the genital area and of the larynx. A new vaccine, comprising types 16 and 18 only, the product of another firm, is to appear on the market soon. Both vaccines have already been tested in extensive clinical trials. They are nearly 100% effective, only very weakly reactogenic and they undoubtedly belong among the most perfect vaccines ever produced. The darker side of the anti-HPV vaccines is their high price, the fact that the highest benefits they bring will only become evident in 20 or 30 years, and that they do not afford protection against all oncogenic HPVs. It is therefore imperative that organized cytological screening be continued: it is destined to remain the main instrument of CaCer prevention for several decades. With all

  12. Evolution of the Human ASPM Gene, a Major Determinant of Brain Size

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Zhang, Jianzhi

    2003-01-01

    ...% reduction in brain size. Here I provide evidence suggesting that human ASPM went through an episode of accelerated sequence evolution by positive Darwinian selection after the split of humans and chimpanzees but before...

  13. Biological psychological and social determinants of old age: bio-psycho-social aspects of human aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dziechciaż, Małgorzata; Filip, Rafał

    2014-01-01

    The aging of humans is a physiological and dynamic process ongoing with time. In accordance with most gerontologists' assertions it starts in the fourth decade of life and leads to death. The process of human aging is complex and individualized, occurs in the biological, psychological and social sphere. Biological aging is characterized by progressive age-changes in metabolism and physicochemical properties of cells, leading to impaired self-regulation, regeneration, and to structural changes and functional tissues and organs. It is a natural and irreversible process which can run as successful aging, typical or pathological. Biological changes that occur with age in the human body affect mood, attitude to the environment, physical condition and social activity, and designate the place of seniors in the family and society. Psychical ageing refers to human awareness and his adaptability to the ageing process. Among adaptation attitudes we can differentiate: constructive, dependence, hostile towards others and towards self attitudes. With progressed age, difficulties with adjustment to the new situation are increasing, adverse changes in the cognitive and intellectual sphere take place, perception process involutes, perceived sensations and information received is lowered, and thinking processes change. Social ageing is limited to the role of an old person is culturally conditioned and may change as customs change. Social ageing refers to how a human being perceives the ageing process and how society sees it.

  14. Effcacy of different biological control agents against major postharvest pathogens of grapes under room temperature storage conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramu SENTHIL

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Normal 0 14 false false false IT ZH-TW X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 Grapes were treated post harvest with a variety of biological agents to determine their effcacy in reducing yield loss. The agents Pseudomonas, Bacillus, Trichoderma and yeast isolates were individually screened against a number of postharvest pathogens including Aspergillus carbonarius, Penicillum expansum, and Fusarium moniliforme. B. subtilis strains EPC-8 and EPCO-16 showed high mycelial growth suppression of A. carbonarius and P. expansum  in vitro. The fungal antagonist Trichoderma viride strain (Tv Tvm was the most effective, inhibiting mycelial growth by 88.8 per cent. The biological control agents were tested in pre, post and combined inoculation studies against postharvest pathogens of grapes.  In the pre inoculation, B. subtilis (EPC-8 reduced the disease incidence of A. carbonarius causing rot, T. harzianum (Th Co was effective against P. expansum, and T. viride (Tv Tvm was effective against F. moniliforme. The same trend of effectiveness was also found in the post-inoculation and combined inoculation tests.

  15. Evolutionary interrogation of human biology in well-annotated genomic framework of rhesus macaque.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Shi-Jian; Liu, Chu-Jun; Yu, Peng; Zhong, Xiaoming; Chen, Jia-Yu; Yang, Xinzhuang; Peng, Jiguang; Yan, Shouyu; Wang, Chenqu; Zhu, Xiaotong; Xiong, Jingwei; Zhang, Yong E; Tan, Bertrand Chin-Ming; Li, Chuan-Yun

    2014-05-01

    With genome sequence and composition highly analogous to human, rhesus macaque represents a unique reference for evolutionary studies of human biology. Here, we developed a comprehensive genomic framework of rhesus macaque, the RhesusBase2, for evolutionary interrogation of human genes and the associated regulations. A total of 1,667 next-generation sequencing (NGS) data sets were processed, integrated, and evaluated, generating 51.2 million new functional annotation records. With extensive NGS annotations, RhesusBase2 refined the fine-scale structures in 30% of the macaque Ensembl transcripts, reporting an accurate, up-to-date set of macaque gene models. On the basis of these annotations and accurate macaque gene models, we further developed an NGS-oriented Molecular Evolution Gateway to access and visualize macaque annotations in reference to human orthologous genes and associated regulations (www.rhesusbase.org/molEvo). We highlighted the application of this well-annotated genomic framework in generating hypothetical link of human-biased regulations to human-specific traits, by using mechanistic characterization of the DIEXF gene as an example that provides novel clues to the understanding of digestive system reduction in human evolution. On a global scale, we also identified a catalog of 9,295 human-biased regulatory events, which may represent novel elements that have a substantial impact on shaping human transcriptome and possibly underpin recent human phenotypic evolution. Taken together, we provide an NGS data-driven, information-rich framework that will broadly benefit genomics research in general and serves as an important resource for in-depth evolutionary studies of human biology.

  16. The species translation challenge-a systems biology perspective on human and rat bronchial epithelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poussin, Carine; Mathis, Carole; Alexopoulos, Leonidas G; Messinis, Dimitris E; Dulize, Rémi H J; Belcastro, Vincenzo; Melas, Ioannis N; Sakellaropoulos, Theodore; Rhrissorrakrai, Kahn; Bilal, Erhan; Meyer, Pablo; Talikka, Marja; Boué, Stéphanie; Norel, Raquel; Rice, John J; Stolovitzky, Gustavo; Ivanov, Nikolai V; Peitsch, Manuel C; Hoeng, Julia

    2014-01-01

    The biological responses to external cues such as drugs, chemicals, viruses and hormones, is an essential question in biomedicine and in the field of toxicology, and cannot be easily studied in humans. Thus, biomedical research has continuously relied on animal models for studying the impact of these compounds and attempted to 'translate' the results to humans. In this context, the SBV IMPROVER (Systems Biology Verification for Industrial Methodology for PROcess VErification in Research) collaborative initiative, which uses crowd-sourcing techniques to address fundamental questions in systems biology, invited scientists to deploy their own computational methodologies to make predictions on species translatability. A multi-layer systems biology dataset was generated that was comprised of phosphoproteomics, transcriptomics and cytokine data derived from normal human (NHBE) and rat (NRBE) bronchial epithelial cells exposed in parallel to more than 50 different stimuli under identical conditions. The present manuscript describes in detail the experimental settings, generation, processing and quality control analysis of the multi-layer omics dataset accessible in public repositories for further intra- and inter-species translation studies.

  17. Prediction of phenotypes of missense mutations in human proteins from biological assemblies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Qiong; Xu, Qifang; Dunbrack, Roland L

    2013-02-01

    Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are the most frequent variation in the human genome. Nonsynonymous SNPs that lead to missense mutations can be neutral or deleterious, and several computational methods have been presented that predict the phenotype of human missense mutations. These methods use sequence-based and structure-based features in various combinations, relying on different statistical distributions of these features for deleterious and neutral mutations. One structure-based feature that has not been studied significantly is the accessible surface area within biologically relevant oligomeric assemblies. These assemblies are different from the crystallographic asymmetric unit for more than half of X-ray crystal structures. We find that mutations in the core of proteins or in the interfaces in biological assemblies are significantly more likely to be disease-associated than those on the surface of the biological assemblies. For structures with more than one protein in the biological assembly (whether the same sequence or different), we find the accessible surface area from biological assemblies provides a statistically significant improvement in prediction over the accessible surface area of monomers from protein crystal structures (P = 6e-5). When adding this information to sequence-based features such as the difference between wildtype and mutant position-specific profile scores, the improvement from biological assemblies is statistically significant but much smaller (P = 0.018). Combining this information with sequence-based features in a support vector machine leads to 82% accuracy on a balanced dataset of 50% disease-associated mutations from SwissVar and 50% neutral mutations from human/primate sequence differences in orthologous proteins.

  18. Type-specific human papillomavirus biological features: validated model-based estimates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iacopo Baussano

    Full Text Available Infection with high-risk (hr human papillomavirus (HPV is considered the necessary cause of cervical cancer. Vaccination against HPV16 and 18 types, which are responsible of about 75% of cervical cancer worldwide, is expected to have a major global impact on cervical cancer occurrence. Valid estimates of the parameters that regulate the natural history of hrHPV infections are crucial to draw reliable projections of the impact of vaccination. We devised a mathematical model to estimate the probability of infection transmission, the rate of clearance, and the patterns of immune response following the clearance of infection of 13 hrHPV types. To test the validity of our estimates, we fitted the same transmission model to two large independent datasets from Italy and Sweden and assessed finding consistency. The two populations, both unvaccinated, differed substantially by sexual behaviour, age distribution, and study setting (screening for cervical cancer or Chlamydia trachomatis infection. Estimated transmission probability of hrHPV types (80% for HPV16, 73%-82% for HPV18, and above 50% for most other types; clearance rates decreasing as a function of time since infection; and partial protection against re-infection with the same hrHPV type (approximately 20% for HPV16 and 50% for the other types were similar in the two countries. The model could accurately predict the HPV16 prevalence observed in Italy among women who were not infected three years before. In conclusion, our models inform on biological parameters that cannot at the moment be measured directly from any empirical data but are essential to forecast the impact of HPV vaccination programmes.

  19. Research and Application of Human Capital Strategic Classification Tool: Human Capital Classification Matrix Based on Biological Natural Attribute

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yong Liu

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available In order to study the causes of weak human capital structure strategic classification management in China, we analyze that enterprises around the world face increasingly difficult for human capital management. In order to provide strategically sound answers, the HR managers need the critical information provided by the right technology processing and analytical tools. In this study, there are different types and levels of human capital in formal organization management, which is not the same contribution to a formal organization. An important guarantee for sustained and healthy development of the formal or informal organization is lower human capital risk. To resist this risk is primarily dependent on human capital hedge force and appreciation force in value, which is largely dependent on the strategic value of the performance of senior managers. Based on the analysis of high-level managers perspective, we also discuss the value and configuration of principles and methods to be followed in human capital strategic classification based on Boston Consulting Group (BCG matrix and build Human Capital Classification (HCC matrix based on biological natural attribute to effectively realize human capital structure strategic classification.

  20. T3 Regulates a Human Macrophage-Derived TSH-β Splice Variant: Implications for Human Bone Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baliram, R; Latif, R; Morshed, S A; Zaidi, M; Davies, T F

    2016-09-01

    TSH and thyroid hormones (T3 and T4) are intimately involved in bone biology. We have previously reported the presence of a murine TSH-β splice variant (TSH-βv) expressed specifically in bone marrow-derived macrophages and that exerted an osteoprotective effect by inducing osteoblastogenesis. To extend this observation and its relevance to human bone biology, we set out to identify and characterize a TSH-β variant in human macrophages. Real-time PCR analyses using human TSH-β-specific primers identified a 364-bp product in macrophages, bone marrow, and peripheral blood mononuclear cells that was sequence verified and was homologous to a human TSH-βv previously reported. We then examined TSH-βv regulation using the THP-1 human monocyte cell line matured into macrophages. After 4 days, 46.1% of the THP-1 cells expressed the macrophage markers CD-14 and macrophage colony-stimulating factor and exhibited typical morphological characteristics of macrophages. Real-time PCR analyses of these cells treated in a dose-dependent manner with T3 showed a 14-fold induction of human TSH-βv mRNA and variant protein. Furthermore, these human TSH-βv-positive cells, induced by T3 exposure, had categorized into both M1 and M2 macrophage phenotypes as evidenced by the expression of macrophage colony-stimulating factor for M1 and CCL-22 for M2. These data indicate that in hyperthyroidism, bone marrow resident macrophages have the potential to exert enhanced osteoprotective effects by oversecreting human TSH-βv, which may exert its local osteoprotective role via osteoblast and osteoclast TSH receptors.

  1. FDG PET imaging of Ela1-myc mice reveals major biological differences between pancreatic acinar and ductal tumours

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Abasolo, Ibane [Institut Municipal d' Investigacio Medica-Hospital del Mar, Parc de Recerca Biomedica de Barcelona, Barcelona (Spain); Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Parc de Recerca Biomedica de Barcelona, Departament de Ciencies Experimentals i de la Salut, Barcelona (Spain); Institut d' Alta Tecnologia - CRC, Parc de Recerca Biomedica de Barcelona, Barcelona (Spain); Pujal, Judit; Navarro, Pilar [Institut Municipal d' Investigacio Medica-Hospital del Mar, Parc de Recerca Biomedica de Barcelona, Barcelona (Spain); Rabanal, Rosa M.; Serafin, Anna [Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Departament de Medicina i Cirurgia Animals, Barcelona (Spain); Millan, Olga [Institut d' Alta Tecnologia - CRC, Parc de Recerca Biomedica de Barcelona, Barcelona (Spain); Real, Francisco X. [Institut Municipal d' Investigacio Medica-Hospital del Mar, Parc de Recerca Biomedica de Barcelona, Barcelona (Spain); Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Parc de Recerca Biomedica de Barcelona, Departament de Ciencies Experimentals i de la Salut, Barcelona (Spain); Programa de Patologia Molecular, Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncologicas, Madrid (Spain)

    2009-07-15

    The aim was to evaluate FDG PET imaging in Ela1-myc mice, a pancreatic cancer model resulting in the development of tumours with either acinar or mixed acinar-ductal phenotype. Transversal and longitudinal FDG PET studies were conducted; selected tissue samples were subjected to autoradiography and ex vivo organ counting. Glucose transporter and hexokinase mRNA expression was analysed by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR); Glut2 expression was analysed by immunohistochemistry. Transversal studies showed that mixed acinar-ductal tumours could be identified by FDG PET several weeks before they could be detected by hand palpation. Longitudinal studies revealed that ductal - but not acinar - tumours could be detected by FDG PET. Autoradiographic analysis confirmed that tumour areas with ductal differentiation incorporated more FDG than areas displaying acinar differentiation. Ex vivo radioactivity measurements showed that tumours of solely acinar phenotype incorporated more FDG than pancreata of non-transgenic littermates despite the fact that they did not yield positive PET images. To gain insight into the biological basis of the differential FDG uptake, glucose transporter and hexokinase transcript expression was studied in microdissected tumour areas enriched for acinar or ductal cells and validated using cell-specific markers. Glut2 and hexokinase I and II mRNA levels were up to 20-fold higher in ductal than in acinar tumours. Besides, Glut2 protein overexpression was found in ductal neoplastic cells but not in the surrounding stroma. In Ela1-myc mice, ductal tumours incorporate significantly more FDG than acinar tumours. This difference likely results from differential expression of Glut2 and hexokinases. These findings reveal previously unreported biological differences between acinar and ductal pancreatic tumours. (orig.)

  2. Human telomere biology: A contributory and interactive factor in aging, disease risks, and protection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blackburn, Elizabeth H; Epel, Elissa S; Lin, Jue

    2015-12-04

    Telomeres are the protective end-complexes at the termini of eukaryotic chromosomes. Telomere attrition can lead to potentially maladaptive cellular changes, block cell division, and interfere with tissue replenishment. Recent advances in the understanding of human disease processes have clarified the roles of telomere biology, especially in diseases of human aging and in some aging-related processes. Greater overall telomere attrition predicts mortality and aging-related diseases in inherited telomere syndrome patients, and also in general human cohorts. However, genetically caused variations in telomere maintenance either raise or lower risks and progression of cancers, in a highly cancer type-specific fashion. Telomere maintenance is determined by genetic factors and is also cumulatively shaped by nongenetic influences throughout human life; both can interact. These and other recent findings highlight both causal and potentiating roles for telomere attrition in human diseases.

  3. Improving human forensics through advances in genetics, genomics and molecular biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kayser, Manfred; de Knijff, Peter

    2011-03-01

    Forensic DNA profiling currently allows the identification of persons already known to investigating authorities. Recent advances have produced new types of genetic markers with the potential to overcome some important limitations of current DNA profiling methods. Moreover, other developments are enabling completely new kinds of forensically relevant information to be extracted from biological samples. These include new molecular approaches for finding individuals previously unknown to investigators, and new molecular methods to support links between forensic sample donors and criminal acts. Such advances in genetics, genomics and molecular biology are likely to improve human forensic case work in the near future.

  4. 21 CFR 201.56 - Requirements on content and format of labeling for human prescription drug and biological products.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... human prescription drug and biological products. 201.56 Section 201.56 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG... human prescription drug and biological products. (a) General requirements. Prescription drug labeling... requirements in §§ 201.56(d) and 201.57. (1) The following categories of prescription drug products are...

  5. Human life support during interplanetary travel and domicile. VI - Generic modular flow schematic for hybrid physical/chemical-biological life support systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ganapathi, Gani B.; Seshan, P. K.; Ferrall, Joseph; Rohatgi, Naresh

    1992-01-01

    An extension is proposed for the NASA Space Exploration Initiative's Generic Modular Flow Schematics for physical/chemical life support systems which involves the addition of biological processes. The new system architecture includes plant, microbial, and animal habitat, as well as the human habitat subsystem. Major Feedstock Production and Food Preparation and Packaging components have also been incorporated. Inedible plant, aquaculture, microbial, and animal solids are processed for recycling.

  6. Using clickers in nonmajors- and majors-level biology courses: student opinion, learning, and long-term retention of course material.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crossgrove, Kirsten; Curran, Kristen L

    2008-01-01

    Student response systems (clickers) are viewed positively by students and instructors in numerous studies. Evidence that clickers enhance student learning is more variable. After becoming comfortable with the technology during fall 2005-spring 2006, we compared student opinion and student achievement in two different courses taught with clickers in fall 2006. One course was an introductory biology class for nonmajors, and the other course was a 200 level genetics class for biology majors. Students in both courses had positive opinions of the clickers, although we observed some interesting differences between the two groups of students. Student performance was significantly higher on exam questions covering material taught with clickers, although the differences were more dramatic for the nonmajors biology course than the genetics course. We also compared retention of information 4 mo after the course ended, and we saw increased retention of material taught with clickers for the nonmajors course, but not for the genetics course. We discuss the implications of our results in light of differences in how the two courses were taught and differences between science majors and nonmajors.

  7. Development of human protein reference database as an initial platform for approaching systems biology in humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Peri, Suraj; Navarro, J Daniel; Amanchy, Ramars

    2003-01-01

    Human Protein Reference Database (HPRD) is an object database that integrates a wealth of information relevant to the function of human proteins in health and disease. Data pertaining to thousands of protein-protein interactions, posttranslational modifications, enzyme/substrate relationships, di...

  8. Human Biological Monitoring of Diisononyl Phthalate and Diisodecyl Phthalate: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gurusankar Saravanabhavan

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available High molecular-weight phthalates, such as diisononyl phthalate (DINP, and diisodecyl phthalate (DIDP, are widely used as plasticizers in the manufacturing of polymers and consumer products. Human biological monitoring studies have employed the metabolites of DINP and DIDP as biomarkers to assess human exposure. In this review, we summarize and analyze publicly available scientific data on chemistry, metabolism, and excretion kinetics, of DINP and DIDP, to identify specific and sensitive metabolites. Human biological monitoring data on DINP and DIDP are scrutinised to assess the suitability of these metabolites as biomarkers of exposure. Results from studies carried out in animals and humans indicate that phthalates are metabolised rapidly and do not bioaccmulate. During Phase-I metabolism, ester hydrolysis of DINP and DIDP leads to the formation of hydrolytic monoesters. These primary metabolites undergo further oxidation reactions to produce secondary metabolites. Hence, the levels of secondary metabolites of DINP and DIDP in urine are found to be always higher than the primary metabolites. Results from human biological monitoring studies have shown that the secondary metabolites of DINP and DIDP in urine were detected in almost all tested samples, while the primary metabolites were detected in only about 10% of the samples. This indicates that the secondary metabolites are very sensitive biomarkers of DINP/DIDP exposure while primary metabolites are not. The NHANES data indicate that the median concentrations of MCIOP and MCINP (secondary metabolites of DINP and DIDP, resp. at a population level are about 5.1 μg/L and 2.7 μg/L, respectively. Moreover, the available biological monitoring data suggest that infants/children are exposed to higher levels of phthalates than adults.

  9. The Science and Issues of Human DNA Polymorphisms: A Training Workshop for High School Biology Teachers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Micklos, David A.

    2006-10-30

    This project achieved its goal of implementing a nationwide training program to introduce high school biology teachers to the key uses and societal implications of human DNA polymorphisms. The 2.5-day workshop introduced high school biology faculty to a laboratory-based unit on human DNA polymorphisms â which provides a uniquely personal perspective on the science and Ethical, Legal and Social Implications (ELSI) of the Human Genome Project. As proposed, 12 workshops were conducted at venues across the United States. The workshops were attended by 256 high school faculty, exceeding proposed attendance of 240 by 7%. Each workshop mixed theoretical, laboratory, and computer work with practical and ethical implications. Program participants learned simplified lab techniques for amplifying three types of chromosomal polymorphisms: an Alu insertion (PV92), a VNTR (pMCT118/D1S80), and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the mitochondrial control region. These polymorphisms illustrate the use of DNA variations in disease diagnosis, forensic biology, and identity testing - and provide a starting point for discussing the uses and potential abuses of genetic technology. Participants also learned how to use their Alu and mitochondrial data as an entrée to human population genetics and evolution. Our work to simplify lab techniques for amplifying human DNA polymorphisms in educational settings culminated with the release in 1998 of three Advanced Technology (AT) PCR kits by Carolina Biological Supply Company, the nationâÂÂs oldest educational science supplier. The kits use a simple 30-minute method to isolate template DNA from hair sheaths or buccal cells and streamlined PCR chemistry based on Pharmacia Ready-To-Go Beads, which incorporate Taq polymerase, deoxynucleotide triphosphates, and buffer in a freeze-dried pellet. These kits have greatly simplified teacher implementation of human PCR labs, and their use is growing at a rapid pace. Sales of human

  10. Slaughterhouse Pigs Are a Major Reservoir of Streptococcus suis Serotype 2 Capable of Causing Human Infection in Southern Vietnam

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ngo, T.H; Tran, T.B.C.; Tran, T.T.N.; Nguyen, V.D.; Campbell, J.; Pham, H.A.; Huynh, H.T.; Nguyen, V.V.C.; Bryant, J.E.; Tran, T.H.; Farrar, J.; Schultsz, C.

    2011-01-01

    Streptococcus suis is a pathogen of major economic significance to the swine industry and is increasingly recognized as an emerging zoonotic agent in Asia. In Vietnam, S. suis is the leading cause of bacterial meningitis in adult humans. Zoonotic transmission is most frequently associated with serot

  11. Identification of the Main Intermediate Precursor of l-Ergothioneine Biosynthesis in Human Biological Specimens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvatore Sotgia

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available A capillary electrophoresis coupled to tandem mass spectrometry (CE–MS/MS has been used to make a qualitative determination of hercynine—the main precursor of l-ergothioneine biosynthesis—in some key human biological specimens, such as urine, whole blood, plasma, and saliva. From semiquantitative analysis results, the highest concentrations of hercynine were detected in saliva and whole blood, whereas much lower concentrations were measured in urine and plasma. Whole blood was the biological matrix with the highest concentration of l-ergothioneine followed by plasma, saliva, and urine. The antioxidant effects attributed to l-ergothioneine, along with its peculiar antioxidant mechanism, offer a possible explanation for the presence of the hercynine, as well as its concentration, in the considered biological matrices.

  12. Molecular biology in a distributed world. A Kantian perspective on scientific practices and the human mind

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariagrazia Portera

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In recent years the number of scholarly publications devoted to Kant's theory of biology has rapidly growing, with particular attention being given to Kant's thoughts about the concepts of teleology, function, organism, and their respective roles in scientific practice. Moving from these recent studies, and distancing itself from their mostly evolutionary background, the main aim of the present paper is to suggest an original "cognitive turn" in the interpretation of Kant's theory of biology. More specifically, the Authors will trace a connection between some Kantian theses about the “peculiar” or special nature of the human mind (intellectus ectypus, advanced in the Critique of the Power of Judgement (§ 76, 77, and some specific epistemological issues pertaining to the research practice of contemporary molecular biology.

  13. Current Status and Development of Vaccines and Other Biologics for Human Rabies Prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rupprecht, Charles E; Nagarajan, Thirumeni; Ertl, Hildegund

    2016-06-01

    Rabies is a neglected viral zoonosis with the highest case fatality of any infectious disease. Pasteur's historical accomplishments during the late 19(th) century began the process of human vaccine development, continuing to evolve into the 21(st) century. Over the past 35 years, great improvements occurred in the production of potent tissue culture vaccines and the gradual removal from the market of unsafe nerve tissue products. Timely and appropriate administration of modern biologics virtually assures survivorship, even after severe exposures. Nevertheless, in the developing world, if not provided for free nationally, the cost of a single course of human prophylaxis exceeds the average monthly wage of the common worker. Beyond traditional approaches, recombinant, sub-unit and other novel methods are underway to improve the availability of safe, effective and more affordable rabies biologics.

  14. Utilizing population variation, vaccination, and systems biology to study human immunology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsang, John S

    2015-08-01

    The move toward precision medicine has highlighted the importance of understanding biological variability within and across individuals in the human population. In particular, given the prevalent involvement of the immune system in diverse pathologies, an important question is how much and what information about the state of the immune system is required to enable accurate prediction of future health and response to medical interventions. Towards addressing this question, recent studies using vaccination as a model perturbation and systems-biology approaches are beginning to provide a glimpse of how natural population variation together with multiplexed, high-throughput measurement and computational analysis can be used to uncover predictors of immune response quality in humans. Here I discuss recent developments in this emerging field, with emphasis on baseline correlates of vaccination responses, sources of immune-state variability, as well as relevant features of study design, data generation, and computational analysis.

  15. Biological Width around One- and Two-Piece Implants Retrieved from Human Jaws

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ricardo Judgar

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Several histologic studies regarding peri-implant soft tissues and biological width around dental implants have been done in animals. However, these findings in human peri-implant soft tissues are very scarce. Therefore, the aim of this case series was to compare the biological width around unloaded one- and two-piece implants retrieved from human jaws. Eight partially edentulous patients received 2 test implants in the posterior mandible: one-piece (solid implants that comprise implant and abutment in one piece and two-piece (external hexagon with a healing abutment implants. After 4 months of healing, the implants and surrounding tissue were removed for histologic analysis. The retrieved implants showed healthy peri-implant bone and exhibited early stages of maturation. Marginal bone loss, gaps, and fibrous tissue were not present around retrieved specimens. The biologic width dimension ranged between 2.55 ± 0.16 and 3.26 ± 0.15 to one- and two-piece implants, respectively (P0.05. Within the limits of this study, it could be shown that two-piece implants resulted in the thickening of the connective tissue attachment, resulting in the increase of the biological width, when compared to one-piece implants.

  16. Probing Human NK Cell Biology Using Human Immune System (HIS) Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yan; Di Santo, James P

    2016-01-01

    Our incomplete understanding of the mechanisms that orchestrate human lymphocyte differentiation and condition human immune responses is in part due to the limited access to normal human tissue samples that can inform on these complex processes. In addition, in vitro culture conditions fail to recapitulate the three-dimensional microenvironments that influence cell-cell interactions and impact on immune outcomes. Small animals provide a preclinical model to dissect and probe immunity and over the past decades, development of immunodeficient hosts that can be engrafted with human hematopoietic precursors and mature cells have led to the development of new in vivo models to study human lymphocyte development and function. Natural killer (NK) cells are implicated in the recognition and elimination of pathogen-infected and transformed cells and belong to a family of diverse innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) that provide early immune defense against disease. Here, we summarize the use of humanized mouse models for the study of NK cell and group 1 ILCs and their respective roles in immunity and tissue homeostasis.

  17. Advances in radiation biology: Relative radiation sensitivities of human organ systems. Volume 12

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lett, J.T.; Altman, K.I.; Ehmann, U.K.; Cox, A.B.

    1987-01-01

    This volume is a thematically focused issue of Advances in Radiation Biology. The topic surveyed is relative radiosensitivity of human organ systems. Topics considered include relative radiosensitivities of the thymus, spleen, and lymphohemopoietic systems; relative radiosensitivities of the small and large intestine; relative rediosensitivities of the oral cavity, larynx, pharynx, and esophagus; relative radiation sensitivity of the integumentary system; dose response of the epidermal; microvascular, and dermal populations; relative radiosensitivity of the human lung; relative radiosensitivity of fetal tissues; and tolerance of the central and peripheral nervous system to therapeutic irradiation.

  18. Distribution of class ii major histocompatibility complex antigenexpressing cells in human dental pulp with carious lesions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tetiana Haniastuti

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: Dental caries is a bacterial infection which causes destruction of the hard tissues of the tooth. Exposure of the dentin to the oral environment as a result of caries inevitably results in a cellular response in the pulp. The major histocompatibility complex (MHC is a group of genes that code for cell-surface histocompatibility antigens. Cells expressing class II MHC molecules participate in the initial recognition and the processing of antigenic substances to serve as antigen-presenting cells. Purpose: The aim of the study was to elucidate the alteration in the distribution of class II MHC antigen-expressing cells in human dental pulp as carious lesions progressed toward the pulp. Methods: Fifteen third molars with caries at the occlusal site at various stages of decay and 5 intact third molars were extracted and used in this study. Before decalcifying with 10% EDTA solution (pH 7.4, all the samples were observed by micro-computed tomography to confirm the lesion condition three-dimensionally. The specimens were then processed for cryosection and immunohistochemistry using an anti-MHC class II monoclonal antibody. Results: Class II MHC antigen-expressing cells were found both in normal and carious specimens. In normal tooth, the class II MHC-immunopositive cells were observed mainly at the periphery of the pulp tissue. In teeth with caries, class II MHC-immunopositive cells were located predominantly subjacent to the carious lesions. As the caries progressed, the number of class II MHC antigen-expressing cells was increased. Conclusion: The depth of carious lesions affects the distribution of class II MHC antigen-expressing cells in the dental pulp.Latar belakang: Karies merupakan penyakit infeksi bakteri yang mengakibatkan destruksi jaringan keras gigi. Dentin yang terbuka akibat karies akan menginduksi respon imun seluler pada pulpa. Kompleks histokompatibilitas utama (MHC merupakan sekumpulan gen yang mengkode histokompatibilitas

  19. Comparison of major lipid components in human and donkey milk: new perspectives for a hypoallergenic diet in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiofalo, Biagina; Dugo, Paola; Bonaccorsi, Ivana L; Mondello, Luigi

    2011-12-01

    Recently, donkey milk has been indicated as a nutraceutical food thanks to some bioactive compounds interesting in the human diet; these substances are the lipids, which are characterized by the ability in conditioning indirectly or directly the intestinal environment and immunity, taking part in the prevention and treatment of some pathologies. With the aim to compare some nutritional properties of human and donkey milk, the triacylglycerol (TAG) composition and the positional isomers of donkey milk samples were analyzed by HPLC-APCI-MS on reversed phase and silver ion columns. The technique allowed the identification of 72 TAGs in the samples analyzed. Similarities and differences among the TAGs fraction of human and donkey milk can be easily determined by HPLC analysis of the lipid fraction. Donkey milk presents TAGs with partition number (PN) values starting from 30 up to 50. In human milk, the short-chain fatty acids (FAs) are not well-represented and the PN values range between 36 and 52. Other significant differences are among TAGs containing polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). In fact, donkey milk presents a larger number and amount of ω3 and ω6 FAs than human milk, which contains only significant amount of ω6 FA (linoleic). Both donkey and human milk present the saturated FA preferably on the sn-2 position. Data testify a certain degree of similarity of these products in relation to their digestibility and confirm the increasing interest toward donkey milk as an alternative food for hypoallergenic diet in humans.

  20. Stability and biological activity evaluations of PEGylated human basic fibroblast growth factor

    OpenAIRE

    Hadadian, Shahin; Shamassebi, Dariush Norouzian; Mirzahoseini, Hasan; Shokrgozar, Mohamad Ali; Bouzari, Saeid; Sepahi, Mina

    2015-01-01

    Background: Human basic fibroblast growth factor (hBFGF) is a heparin-binding growth factor and stimulates the proliferation of a wide variety of cells and tissues causing survival properties and its stability and biological activity improvements have received much attention. Materials and Methods: In the present work, hBFGF produced by engineered Escherichia coli and purified by cation exchange and heparin affinity chromatography, was PEGylated under appropriate condition employing 10 kD pol...

  1. From old organisms to new molecules: integrative biology and therapeutic targets in accelerated human ageing

    OpenAIRE

    Cox, L S; Faragher, R. G. A.

    2007-01-01

    Abstract. Understanding the basic biology of human ageing is a key milestone in attempting to ameliorate the deleterious consequences of old age. This is an urgent research priority given the global demographic shift towards an ageing population. Although some molecular pathways that have been proposed to contribute to ageing have been discovered using classical biochemistry and genetics, the complex, polygenic and stochastic nature of ageing is such that the process as a whole is not immedia...

  2. The Biological Study of the Cultured Human Lens Epithelial Cells in Vitro

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    1994-01-01

    The human lens epithelial cells (HLE) cultured in vitro was established in normal and cataractous lenses. The biological feature, histological characteristics and the ultrastructure of the cultured HLE cells were investigated. The results reveal that the proliferative capacity of the culutured HLE cells is reversely proportional to the donour age; the cultured HLE cells has the limited proliferative capacity in vitro. The relieve of the contact inhibition is the effective trigger of the HLE cell prolife...

  3. The marmoset monkey: a multi-purpose preclinical and translational model of human biology and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    't Hart, Bert A; Abbott, David H; Nakamura, Katsuki; Fuchs, Eberhard

    2012-11-01

    The development of biologic molecules (monoclonal antibodies, cytokines, soluble receptors) as specific therapeutics for human disease creates a need for animal models in which safety and efficacy can be tested. Models in lower animal species are precluded when the reagents fail to recognize their targets, which is often the case in rats and mice. In this Feature article we will highlight the common marmoset, a small-bodied nonhuman primate (NHP), as a useful model in biomedical and preclinical translational research.

  4. Transient receptor potential vanilloid-1 signaling as a regulator of human sebocyte biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tóth, Balázs I; Géczy, Tamás; Griger, Zoltán; Dózsa, Anikó; Seltmann, Holger; Kovács, László; Nagy, László; Zouboulis, Christos C; Paus, Ralf; Bíró, Tamás

    2009-02-01

    Transient receptor potential vanilloid-1 (TRPV1), originally described as a central integrator of nociception, is expressed on human epidermal and hair follicle keratinocytes and is involved in regulation of cell growth and death. In human pilosebaceous units, we had shown that TRPV1 stimulation inhibits hair shaft elongation and matrix keratinocyte proliferation, and induces premature hair follicle regression and keratinocyte apoptosis. In the current study, we have explored the role of TRPV1-mediated signaling in sebaceous gland (SG) biology, using a human sebocyte cell culture model (SZ95 sebocytes). Demonstrating that human skin SG in situ and SZ95 sebocytes in vitro express TRPV1, we show that the prototypic TRPV1 agonist, capsaicin, selectively inhibits basal and arachidonic acid-induced lipid synthesis in a dose-, time-, and extracellular calcium-dependent and a TRPV1-specific manner. Low-dose capsaicin stimulates cellular proliferation via TRPV1, whereas higher concentrations inhibit sebocyte growth and induce cell death independent of TRPV1. Moreover, capsaicin suppresses the expression of genes involved in lipid homeostasis and of selected proinflammatory cytokines. Collectively, these findings support the concept that TRPV1 signaling is a significant, previously unreported player in human sebocyte biology and identify TRPV1 as a promising target in the clinical management of inflammatory SG disorders (for example, acne vulgaris).

  5. Are humans prone to autoimmunity? Implications from evolutionary changes in hominin sialic acid biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varki, Ajit

    2017-09-01

    Given varied intrinsic and extrinsic challenges to the immune system, it is unsurprising that each evolutionary lineage evolves distinctive features of immunoreactivity, and that tolerance mechanisms fail, allowing autoimmunity. Humans appear prone to many autoimmune diseases, with mechanisms both genetic and environmental. Another rapidly evolving biological system involves sialic acids, a family of monosaccharides that are terminal caps on cell surface and secreted molecules of vertebrates, and play multifarious roles in immunity. We have explored multiple genomic changes in sialic acid biology that occurred in human ancestors (hominins), some with implications for enhanced immunoreactivity, and hence for autoimmunity. Human ancestors lost the enzyme synthesizing the common mammalian sialic acid Neu5Gc, with an accumulation of the precursor sialic acid Neu5Ac. Resulting changes include an enhanced reactivity by some immune cells and increased ability of macrophages to kill bacteria, at the cost of increased endotoxin sensitivity. There are also multiple human-specific evolutionary changes in inhibitory and activating Siglecs, immune cell receptors that recognize sialic acids as "self-associated molecular patterns" (SAMPs) to modulate immunity, but can also be hijacked by pathogen molecular mimicry of SAMPs. Altered expression patterns and fixed or polymorphic SIGLEC pseudogenization in humans has modulated both innate and adaptive immunity, sometimes favoring over-reactivity. Meanwhile, dietary intake of Neu5Gc (derived primarily from red meats) allows metabolic incorporation of this non-human molecule into human cells--apparently the first example of "xeno-autoimmunity" involving "xeno-autoantigen" interactions with circulating "xeno-autoantibodies". Taken together, some of these factors may contribute to the apparent human propensity for autoimmunity. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Indoor air and human health: major indoor air pollutants and their health implications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1984-01-01

    This publication is a collection of abstracts of papers presented at the Indoor Air and Human Health symposium. Session titles include: Radon, Microorganisms, Passive Cigarette Smoke, Combustion Products, Organics, and Panel and Audience Discussion.

  7. Biological stimulation of the Human skin applying health promoting light and plasma sources

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Awakowicz, P.; Bibinov, N. [Center for Plasma Science and Technology, Ruhr-University, Bochum (Germany); Born, M.; Niemann, U. [Philips Research, Aachen (Germany); Busse, B. [Zell-Kontakt GmbH, Noerten-Hardenberg (Germany); Gesche, R.; Kuehn, S.; Porteanu, H.E. [Ferdinand-Braun-Institut fuer Hoechstfrequenztechnik, Berlin (Germany); Helmke, A. [University of Applied Sciences and Arts, Goettingen (Germany); Kaemling, A.; Wandke, D. [CINOGY GmbH, Duderstadt (Germany); Kolb-Bachofen, V.; Liebmann, J. [Institute for Immunobiology, Heinrich-Heine University, Duesseldorf (Germany); Kovacs, R.; Mertens, N.; Scherer, J. [Aurion Anlagentechnik GmbH, Seligenstadt (Germany); Oplaender, C.; Suschek, C. [Clinic for Plastic Surgery, University Clinic, Aachen (Germany); Vioel, W. [Laser-Laboratorium, Goettingen (Germany); University of Applied Sciences and Arts, Goettingen (Germany)

    2009-10-15

    In the frame of BMBF project ''BioLiP'', new physical treatment techniques aiming at medical treatment of the human skin have been developed. The acronym BioLiP stands for ''Desinfektion, Entkeimung und biologische Stimulation der Haut durch gesundheitsfoerdernde Licht- und Plasmaquellen'' (Disinfection, germ reduction and biological stimulation of the human skin by health promoting light and plasma sources). A source applying a low-temperature dielectric barrier discharge plasma (DBD) has been investigated on its effectiveness for skin disinfection and stimulation of biological material. Alternatively an atmospheric plasma source consisting of a microwave resonator combined with a solid state power oscillator has been examined. This concept which allows for a compact and efficient design avoiding external microwave power supply and matching units has been optimized with respect to nitrogen monoxide (NO) production in high yields. In both cases various application possibilities in the medical and biological domain are opened up. Light sources in the visible spectral range have been investigated with respect to the proliferation of human cell types. Intensive highly selective blue light sources based on LED technology can slow down proliferation rates without inducing toxic effects which offers new opportunities for treatments of so-called hyperproliferative skin conditions (e.g. with psoriasis or in wound healing) using UV-free light. (copyright 2009 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH and Co. KGaA, Weinheim) (orig.)

  8. Assessment of three human in vitro systems in the generation of major human excretory and circulating metabolites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalvie, Deepak; Obach, R Scott; Kang, Ping; Prakash, Chandra; Loi, Cho-Ming; Hurst, Susan; Nedderman, Angus; Goulet, Lance; Smith, Evan; Bu, Hai-Zhi; Smith, Dennis A

    2009-02-01

    An early understanding of key metabolites of drugs is crucial in drug discovery and development. As a result, several in vitro models typically derived from liver are frequently used to study drug metabolism. It is presumed that these in vitro systems provide an accurate view of the potential in vivo metabolites and metabolic pathways. However, no formal analysis has been conducted to validate their use. The goal of the present study was to conduct a comprehensive analysis to assess if the three commonly used in vitro systems, pooled human liver microsomes, liver S-9 fraction, and hepatocytes, adequately predict in vivo metabolic profiles for drugs. The second objective was to compare the overall capabilities of these three systems to generate in vivo metabolic profiles. Twenty-seven compounds in the Pfizer database and 21 additional commercially available compounds of diverse structure and routes of metabolism for which the human ADME data was available were analyzed in this study to assess the performance of the in vitro systems. The results suggested that all three systems reliably predicted human excretory and circulating metabolite profiles. Furthermore, the success in predicting primary metabolites and metabolic pathways was high (>70%), but the predictability of secondary metabolites was less reliable in the three systems. Thus, the analysis provides sufficient confidence in using in vitro systems to reliably produce primary in vivo human metabolites and supports their application in early discovery to identify metabolic spots for optimization of metabolic liabilities anticipated in humans in vivo. However, the in vitro systems cannot solely mitigate the risk of disproportionate circulating metabolites in humans and may need to be supplemented with metabolic profiling of plasma samples from first-in-human studies or early human radiolabeled studies.

  9. Transcriptional Profiling of Hypoxic Neural Stem Cells Identifies Calcineurin-NFATc4 Signaling as a Major Regulator of Neural Stem Cell Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Marta; Fernández, Virginia; Monllau, Josep M; Borrell, Víctor; Lerin, Carles; de la Iglesia, Núria

    2015-08-11

    Neural stem cells (NSCs) reside in a hypoxic microenvironment within the brain. However, the crucial transcription factors (TFs) that regulate NSC biology under physiologic hypoxia are poorly understood. Here we have performed gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) of microarray datasets from hypoxic versus normoxic NSCs with the aim of identifying pathways and TFs that are activated under oxygen concentrations mimicking normal brain tissue microenvironment. Integration of TF target (TFT) and pathway enrichment analysis identified the calcium-regulated TF NFATc4 as a major candidate to regulate hypoxic NSC functions. Nfatc4 expression was coordinately upregulated by top hypoxia-activated TFs, while NFATc4 target genes were enriched in hypoxic NSCs. Loss-of-function analyses further revealed that the calcineurin-NFATc4 signaling axis acts as a major regulator of NSC self-renewal and proliferation in vitro and in vivo by promoting the expression of TFs, including Id2, that contribute to the maintenance of the NSC state.

  10. Development of human protein reference database as an initial platform for approaching systems biology in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peri, Suraj; Navarro, J Daniel; Amanchy, Ramars; Kristiansen, Troels Z; Jonnalagadda, Chandra Kiran; Surendranath, Vineeth; Niranjan, Vidya; Muthusamy, Babylakshmi; Gandhi, T K B; Gronborg, Mads; Ibarrola, Nieves; Deshpande, Nandan; Shanker, K; Shivashankar, H N; Rashmi, B P; Ramya, M A; Zhao, Zhixing; Chandrika, K N; Padma, N; Harsha, H C; Yatish, A J; Kavitha, M P; Menezes, Minal; Choudhury, Dipanwita Roy; Suresh, Shubha; Ghosh, Neelanjana; Saravana, R; Chandran, Sreenath; Krishna, Subhalakshmi; Joy, Mary; Anand, Sanjeev K; Madavan, V; Joseph, Ansamma; Wong, Guang W; Schiemann, William P; Constantinescu, Stefan N; Huang, Lily; Khosravi-Far, Roya; Steen, Hanno; Tewari, Muneesh; Ghaffari, Saghi; Blobe, Gerard C; Dang, Chi V; Garcia, Joe G N; Pevsner, Jonathan; Jensen, Ole N; Roepstorff, Peter; Deshpande, Krishna S; Chinnaiyan, Arul M; Hamosh, Ada; Chakravarti, Aravinda; Pandey, Akhilesh

    2003-10-01

    Human Protein Reference Database (HPRD) is an object database that integrates a wealth of information relevant to the function of human proteins in health and disease. Data pertaining to thousands of protein-protein interactions, posttranslational modifications, enzyme/substrate relationships, disease associations, tissue expression, and subcellular localization were extracted from the literature for a nonredundant set of 2750 human proteins. Almost all the information was obtained manually by biologists who read and interpreted >300,000 published articles during the annotation process. This database, which has an intuitive query interface allowing easy access to all the features of proteins, was built by using open source technologies and will be freely available at http://www.hprd.org to the academic community. This unified bioinformatics platform will be useful in cataloging and mining the large number of proteomic interactions and alterations that will be discovered in the postgenomic era.

  11. Human genes for U2 small nuclear RNA map to a major adenovirus 12 modification site on chromosome 17.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindgren, V; Ares, M; Weiner, A M; Francke, U

    U2 RNA is one of the abundant, highly conserved species of small nuclear RNA (snRNA) molecules implicated in RNA processing. As is typical of mammalian snRNAs, human U1 and U2 are each encoded by a multigene family. In the human genome, defective copies of the genes (pseudogenes) far outnumber the authentic genes. The majority or all of the 35 to 100 bona fide U1 genes have at least 20 kilobases (kb) of nearly perfect 5' and 3' flanking homology in common with each other; these U1 genes are clustered loosely in chromosome band 1p36 (refs 5, 7) with intergenic distances exceeding 44 kb. In contrast, the 10 to 20 U2 genes are clustered tightly in a virtually perfect tandem array which has a strict 6-kb repeating unit. We report here the assignment, by in situ hybridization, of the U2 gene cluster to chromosome 17, bands q21-q22. Surprisingly, this region is one of three major adenovirus 12 modification sites which undergo chromosome decondensation ('uncoiling') in permissive human cells infected by highly oncogenic strains of adenovirus. The two other major modification sites, 1p36 and 1q21, coincide with the locations of U1 genes and class I U1 pseudogenes, respectively. We suggest that snRNA genes are the major targets of viral chromosome modification.

  12. How institutions shaped the last major evolutionary transition to large-scale human societies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powers, Simon T; van Schaik, Carel P; Lehmann, Laurent

    2016-02-05

    What drove the transition from small-scale human societies centred on kinship and personal exchange, to large-scale societies comprising cooperation and division of labour among untold numbers of unrelated individuals? We propose that the unique human capacity to negotiate institutional rules that coordinate social actions was a key driver of this transition. By creating institutions, humans have been able to move from the default 'Hobbesian' rules of the 'game of life', determined by physical/environmental constraints, into self-created rules of social organization where cooperation can be individually advantageous even in large groups of unrelated individuals. Examples include rules of food sharing in hunter-gatherers, rules for the usage of irrigation systems in agriculturalists, property rights and systems for sharing reputation between mediaeval traders. Successful institutions create rules of interaction that are self-enforcing, providing direct benefits both to individuals that follow them, and to individuals that sanction rule breakers. Forming institutions requires shared intentionality, language and other cognitive abilities largely absent in other primates. We explain how cooperative breeding likely selected for these abilities early in the Homo lineage. This allowed anatomically modern humans to create institutions that transformed the self-reliance of our primate ancestors into the division of labour of large-scale human social organization.

  13. The preparation of albumin as a biological drug from human plasma by fiber filtration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mousavi Hosseini K

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available "nBackground: In recent years, consumption of whole-blood for the treatment of patients has decreased but use of biological plasma-derived medicines such as albumin, immunoglobulin and coagulation factors have increased instead. Paying attention to albumin molecular structure is important for its isolation from human plasma. Albumin is a single-chain protein consisting of about 585 amino acids and a molecular weight of 66500 Daltons. Albumin is a stable molecule and it is spherical in shape. There are different methods for human albumin preparation. Considering the large consumption of this biological drug in clinical settings, methods with fewer steps in production line are of big advantage in saving time and manufacturing more products."n "nMethods: In this project, we prepared human albumin using hollow fiber cartridges in order to omit the rework on fraction V+VI. Human albumin is usually produced by the application of cold ethanol method, where albumin is obtained from fraction V by doing a rework on fraction V+VI to separate fraction V."n "nResults: In the current work, human albumin was prepared from fraction V+VI by the help of hollow fiber cartridges. With a concentration of 20%, the obtained albumin had 96.5% of monomer and 3.5% of polymer and polymer aggregate."n "nConclusion: Comparing the obtained human albumin with a number of commercial human albumin samples by the use of SDS-page, the results were satisfactory regarding the 3.5 percent polymer and aggregate rate for the prepared albumin.

  14. Heterogeneity in Human Capital Investments: High School Curriculum, College Major, and Careers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altonji, Joseph G.; Blom, Erica; Meghir, Costas

    2012-01-01

    Motivated by the large differences in labor market outcomes across college majors, we survey the literature on the demand for and return to high school and postsecondary education by field of study. We combine elements from several papers to provide a dynamic model of education and occupation choice that stresses the roles of the specificity of…

  15. Major differences between human atopic dermatitis and murine models as determined by global transcriptomic profiling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ewald, David Adrian; Noda, Shinji; Oliva, Margeaux

    2017-01-01

    /Nga, and oxazolone-challenged mice show the largest homology with our human meta-analysis derived AD (MADAD) transcriptome (37%, 18%, 17%, respectively). Similar to human AD, robust Th1, Th2, and also Th17 activation are seen in IL-23-injected and NC/Nga mice, with similar, but weaker, inflammation in ovalbumin......-challenged mice. Oxazolone-challenged mice show a Th1-centered reaction and flaky-tail mice demonstrate a strong Th17 polarization. Flg-mutated mice display FLG down-regulation without significant inflammation. No single murine model fully captures all aspects of the AD profile; instead, each model reflects...

  16. Prokaryotic Expression and Biological Activity Analysis of Human Ar-resten Gene

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    SONG Zifang; ZHENG Qichang; LI Wei; XIONG Jun; SHANG Dan; SHU Xiaogang

    2005-01-01

    To express recombinant arresten in Escherichia coli (E. Coli) and investigate its biological activity, prokaryotic expression vector of human arresten gene was constructed by gene engineering. Human arresten gene was amplified from recombinant plasmid pGEMArr by polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and inserted into prokaryotic expression vector pRSET containing T7 promoter. Restriction analysis and DNA sequencing verified that the arresten gene was correctly cloned into the expression vector. The recombinant plasmid pRSETAt was subsequently transformed into E. Coli BL21 (DE3), and the target gene was expressed under induction of IPTG. SDS-PAGE analysis revealed that the recombinant protein with a molecular weight of 29 kD (1 kD=0. 992 1 ku) amounted to 29 % of the total bacterial proteins. After purification and renaturation, the recombinant protein could significantly suppress the proliferation of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). These results suggested that the expression of a biologically active form of human arresten in the pRSET expression system laid a foundation for further study on the mechanistic insight into arresten action on angiogenesis and the development of powerful anti-cancer drugs.

  17. Purification and characterization of biologically active recombinant human Eppin expressed in Escherichia coli

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHU Qing-yi; GU Xiao-jian; YANG Jin; WANG Jun-hong; TANG Bo; WU Hong-fei

    2008-01-01

    Background Eppin(epididymis protease inhibitor)appears to play an important role in primate fertility.However,the function of Eppin and its antibody in men and its relationship with men's infertility are poorly studied.To reveal the significance and possibility of detection of anti-Eppin antibody in clinical infertilty cases,we developed an Escherichia coli expression system for the expression of biologically actire human Eppin.Methods The human Eppin gene was cloned into PET-28a(+)vector after induction with 0.5 mmol/L isopropy-β-D-thiogalactoside(IPTG)at 26℃ for 4 hours,and the expressed fusion protein His6-Eppin was purified by Ni2+ affinity chromatography.Afterwards,six female 8-week-old Balb/c mice were immunized with purified His6-Eppin for three weeks.Their sera were collected and polyclonal antibodies against His6-Eppin were purified,all of which were further verified by Western-blot and immunofluorescence analysis.Results About 18.33 mg His6-Eppin was obtained from 1-L flask culture.The produced polyclonal antibodies against His6-Eppin recognized the Eppin protein both in human epididymis and in HEK293T cells by over-expression of the recombinant human Eppin.Conclusion The purified His6-Eppin protein has biological activity,which might be a candidate for clinical diagnosis of infertility and development of male immuno-contraceptive agents.

  18. The Occurrence, Fate and Biological Activities of C-glycosyl Flavonoids in the Human Diet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Courts, Fraser L; Williamson, Gary

    2015-01-01

    The human diet contains a wide variety of plant-derived flavonoids, many of which are glycosylated via an O- or less commonly a C-glycosidic linkage. The distribution, quantity, and biological effects of C-glycosyl flavonoids in the human diet have received little attention in the literature in comparison to their O-linked counterparts, however, despite being present in many common foodstuffs. The structural nature, nomenclature, and distribution of C-glycosyl flavonoids in the human diet are, therefore, reviewed. Forty-three dietary flavonoids are revealed to be C-glycosylated, arising from the dihydrochalcone, flavone, and flavan-3-ol backbones, and distributed among edible fruits, cereals, leaves, and stems. C-linked sugar groups are shown to include arabinose, galactose, glucose, rutinose, and xylose, often being present more than once on a single flavonoid backbone and occasionally in tandem with O-linked glucose or rutinose groups. The pharmacokinetic fate of these compounds is discussed with particular reference to their apparent lack of interaction with hydrolytic mechanisms known to influence the fate of O-glycosylated dietary flavonoids, explaining the unusual but potentially important appearance of intact C-glycosylated flavonoid metabolites in human urine following oral administration. Finally, the potential biological significance of these compounds is reviewed, describing mechanisms of antidiabetic, antiinflammatory, anxiolytic, antispasmodic, and hepatoprotective effects.

  19. Identifying the Learning Styles and Instructional Tool Preferences of Beginning Food Science and Human Nutrition Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohn, D. M.; Rasmussen, C. N.; Schmidt, S. J.

    2004-01-01

    Learning styles vary among individuals, and understanding which instructional tools certain learning styles prefer can be utilized to enhance student learning. Students in the introductory Food Science and Human Nutrition course (FSHN 101), taught at the Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, were asked to complete Gregorc's Learning Style…

  20. Identifying the Learning Styles and Instructional Tool Preferences of Beginning Food Science and Human Nutrition Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohn, D. M.; Rasmussen, C. N.; Schmidt, S. J.

    2004-01-01

    Learning styles vary among individuals, and understanding which instructional tools certain learning styles prefer can be utilized to enhance student learning. Students in the introductory Food Science and Human Nutrition course (FSHN 101), taught at the Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, were asked to complete Gregorc's Learning Style…

  1. A systems biology approach to studying the role of microbes in human health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thiele, Ines; Heinken, Almut; Fleming, Ronan M T

    2013-02-01

    Host-microbe interactions play a crucial role in human health and disease. Of the various systems biology approaches, reconstruction of genome-scale metabolic networks combined with constraint-based modeling has been particularly successful at in silico predicting the phenotypic characteristics of single organisms. Here, we summarize recent studies, which have applied this approach to investigate microbe-microbe and host-microbe metabolic interactions. This approach can be also expanded to investigate the properties of an entire microbial community, as well as single organisms within the community. We illustrate that the constraint-based modeling approach is suitable to model host-microbe interactions at molecular resolution and will enable systematic investigation of metabolic links between the human host and its microbes. Such host-microbe models, combined with experimental data, will ultimately further our understanding of how microbes influence human health.

  2. Condition-dependent clutch desertion in Great Tit (Parus major) females subjected to human disturbance

    OpenAIRE

    Dubiec, Anna

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Nest desertion behaviour in relation to body condition and timing of breeding was studied in Great Tit (Parus major) females during two breeding seasons. Desertion, most likely unintentionally provoked by catching females during the incubation period, occurred at a very high rate with 41.2 and 25.6% of deserted first clutches in the two study years. The association between desertion probability, body condition (index calculated as residuals from the regression of body mass...

  3. Anatomy and histology of rodent and human major salivary glands: -overview of the Japan salivary gland society-sponsored workshop-.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amano, Osamu; Mizobe, Kenichi; Bando, Yasuhiko; Sakiyama, Koji

    2012-10-31

    MAJOR SALIVARY GLANDS OF BOTH HUMANS AND RODENTS CONSIST OF THREE PAIRS OF MACROSCOPIC GLANDS: parotid, submandibular, and sublingual. These glands secrete serous, mucous or mixed saliva via the proper main excretory ducts connecting the glandular bodies with the oral cavity. A series of discoveries about the salivary ducts in the 17th century by Niels Stensen (1638-1686), Thomas Wharton (1614-1673), and Caspar Bartholin (1655-1738) established the concept of exocrine secretion as well as salivary glands. Recent investigations have revealed the endocrine functions of parotin and a variety of cell growth factors produced by salivary glands.The present review aims to describe macroscopic findings on the major salivary glands of rodents and the microscopic differences between those of humans and rodents, which review should be of interest to those researchers studying salivary glands.

  4. Finite element analysis (FEA): applying an engineering method to functional morphology in anthropology and human biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panagiotopoulou, O

    2009-01-01

    A fundamental research question for morphologists is how morphological variation in the skeleton relates to function. Traditional approaches have advanced our understanding of form-function relationships considerably but have limitations. Strain gauges can only record strains on a surface, and the geometry of the structure can limit where they can be bonded. Theoretical approaches, such as geometric abstractions, work well on problems with simple geometries and material properties but biological structures typically have neither of these. Finite element analysis (FEA) is a method that overcomes these problems by reducing a complex geometry into a finite number of elements with simple geometries. In addition, FEA allows strain to be modelled across the entire surface of the structure and throughout the internal structure. With advances in the processing power of computers, FEA has become more accessible and as such is becoming an increasingly popular tool to address questions about form-function relationships in development and evolution, as well as human biology generally. This paper provides an introduction to FEA including a review of the sequence of steps needed for the generation of biologically accurate finite element models that can be used for the testing of biological and functional morphology hypotheses.

  5. When the human viral infectome and diseasome networks collide: towards a systems biology platform for the aetiology of human diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Chassey Benoit

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Comprehensive understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying viral infection is a major challenge towards the discovery of new antiviral drugs and susceptibility factors of human diseases. New advances in the field are expected from systems-level modelling and integration of the incessant torrent of high-throughput "-omics" data. Results Here, we describe the Human Infectome protein interaction Network, a novel systems virology model of a virtual virus-infected human cell concerning 110 viruses. This in silico model was applied to comprehensively explore the molecular relationships between viruses and their associated diseases. This was done by merging virus-host and host-host physical protein-protein interactomes with the set of genes essential for viral replication and involved in human genetic diseases. This systems-level approach provides strong evidence that viral proteomes target a wide range of functional and inter-connected modules of proteins as well as highly central and bridging proteins within the human interactome. The high centrality of targeted proteins was correlated to their essentiality for viruses' lifecycle, using functional genomic RNAi data. A stealth-attack of viruses on proteins bridging cellular functions was demonstrated by simulation of cellular network perturbations, a property that could be essential in the molecular aetiology of some human diseases. Networking the Human Infectome and Diseasome unravels the connectivity of viruses to a wide range of diseases and profiled molecular basis of Hepatitis C Virus-induced diseases as well as 38 new candidate genetic predisposition factors involved in type 1 diabetes mellitus. Conclusions The Human Infectome and Diseasome Networks described here provide a unique gateway towards the comprehensive modelling and analysis of the systems level properties associated to viral infection as well as candidate genes potentially involved in the molecular aetiology

  6. Urgent Biophilia: Human-Nature Interactions and Biological Attractions in Disaster Resilience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keith G. Tidball

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available This contribution builds upon contemporary work on principles of biological attraction as well as earlier work on biophilia while synthesizing literatures on restorative environments, community-based ecological restoration, and both community and social-ecological disaster resilience. It suggests that when humans, faced with a disaster, as individuals and as communities and populations, seek engagement with nature to further their efforts to summon and demonstrate resilience in the face of a crisis, they exemplify an urgent biophilia. This urgent biophilia represents an important set of human-nature interactions in SES characterized by hazard, disaster, or vulnerability, often appearing in the 'backloop' of the adaptive cycle. The relationships that human-nature interactions have to other components within interdependent systems at many different scales may be one critical source of resilience in disaster and related contexts. In other words, the affinity we humans have for the rest of nature, the process of remembering that attraction, and the urge to express it through creation of restorative environments, which may also restore or increase ecological function, may confer resilience across multiple scales. In making this argument, the paper also represents a novel contribution to further theorizing alternatives to anthropocentric understandings of human-nature relations, and strongly makes the case for humans as part of, not separate from, ecosystems.

  7. Syntheses and properties of the major hydroxy metabolites in humans of blonanserin AD-5423, a novel antipsychotic agent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ochi, Takeshi; Sakamoto, Masato; Minamida, Akira; Suzuki, Kenji; Ueda, Tomohiko; Une, Teruaki; Toda, Hiroshi; Matsumoto, Kazuya; Terauchi, Yoshiaki

    2005-02-15

    Two major metabolites in humans of blonanserin, 2-(4-ethyl-1-piperazinyl)-4-(4-fluorophenyl)-5,6,7,8,9,10-hexahydrocycloocta-[b]pyridine (code name AD-5423), were synthesized. The first, 7-hydroxylated AD-5423, was synthesized through a four-step process starting from 4-fluorobenzoylacetonitrile (1), and the second, 8-hydroxylated AD-5423, a nine-step process also from 1. The optical resolution, structures, and receptor binding properties of the metabolites were documented.

  8. Bacteria associated with human saliva are major microbial components of Ecuadorian indigenous beers (chicha).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freire, Ana L; Zapata, Sonia; Mosquera, Juan; Mejia, Maria Lorena; Trueba, Gabriel

    2016-01-01

    Indigenous beers (chicha) are part of the indigenous culture in Ecuador. The fermentation process of these beers probably relies on microorganisms from fermented substrates, environment and human microbiota. We analyzed the microbiota of artisanal beers (including a type of beer produced after chewing boiled cassava) using bacterial culture and 16S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene-based tag-encoded FLX amplicon pyrosequencing (bTEFAP). Surprisingly, we found that Streptococcus salivarius and Streptococcus mutans (part of the human oral microbiota) were among the most abundant bacteria in chewed cassava and in non-chewed cassava beers. We also demonstrated that S. salivarius and S. mutans (isolated from these beers) could proliferate in cassava mush. Lactobacillus sp. was predominantly present in most types of Ecuadorian chicha.

  9. Bacteria associated with human saliva are major microbial components of Ecuadorian indigenous beers (chicha

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana L. Freire

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Indigenous beers (chicha are part of the indigenous culture in Ecuador. The fermentation process of these beers probably relies on microorganisms from fermented substrates, environment and human microbiota. We analyzed the microbiota of artisanal beers (including a type of beer produced after chewing boiled cassava using bacterial culture and 16S ribosomal RNA (rRNA gene-based tag-encoded FLX amplicon pyrosequencing (bTEFAP. Surprisingly, we found that Streptococcus salivarius and Streptococcus mutans (part of the human oral microbiota were among the most abundant bacteria in chewed cassava and in non-chewed cassava beers. We also demonstrated that S. salivarius and S. mutans (isolated from these beers could proliferate in cassava mush. Lactobacillus sp. was predominantly present in most types of Ecuadorian chicha.

  10. Persistent organochlorines in human breast milk from major metropolitan cities in India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devanathan, Gnanasekaran; Subramanian, Annamalai; Someya, Masayuki; Sudaryanto, Agus; Isobe, Tomohiko; Takahashi, Shin; Chakraborty, Paromita; Tanabe, Shinsuke

    2009-01-01

    The present study was carried out to understand the current contamination status of organochlorine compounds (OCs) in human breast milk from three metropolitan cities in India (New Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata). Among the OCs analyzed, DDTs were predominant followed by HCHs and PCBs. CHLs and HCB levels were much lower. Contamination patterns were different in human milk found in our previous study in Chennai, a metropolitan city in southern India, indicating region specific exposure routes and variable sources. In comparison with previous data, levels of DDTs and HCHs generally declined with time, implying the effect of various bans and restrictions on their usage. No association between concentrations of OCs and demographic characteristics such as parity and age of mothers was observed which might be due to narrow range of mother's age. Estimated daily intake shows that some infants are exposed to OCs to a greater extent, particularly HCHs than the guideline standard.

  11. Lipoproteins are Major Targets of the Polyclonal Human T-cell Response to M. tuberculosis1

    OpenAIRE

    2012-01-01

    Most vaccines and basic studies of T cell epitopes in M. tuberculosis emphasize water soluble proteins that are secreted into the extracellular space and presented in the context of MHC Class II. Much less is known about the role of antigens retained within the cell wall. We used polyclonal T cells from infected humans to probe for responses to immunodominant antigens in the M. tuberculosis cell wall. We found that the magnitude of response to secreted or cell wall intrinsic compounds was sim...

  12. Information on a Major New Initiative: Mapping and Sequencing the Human Genome (1986 DOE Memorandum)

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeLisi, Charles (Associate Director, Health and Environmental Research, DOE Office of Energy Research)

    1986-05-06

    In the history of the Human Genome Program, Dr. Charles DeLisi and Dr. Alvin Trivelpiece of the Department of Energy (DOE) were instrumental in moving the seeds of the program forward. This May 1986 memo from DeLisi to Trivelpiece, Director of DOE's Office of Energy Research, documents this fact. Following the March 1986 Santa Fe workshop on the subject of mapping and sequencing the human genome, DeLisi's memo outlines workshop conclusions, explains the relevance of this project to DOE and the importance of the Department's laboratories and capabilities, notes the critical experience of DOE in managing projects of this scale and potential magnitude, and recognizes the fact that the project will impact biomedical science in ways which could not be fully anticipated at the time. Subsequently, program guidance was further sought from the DOE Health Effects Research Advisory Committee (HERAC) and the April 1987 HERAC report recommended that DOE and the nation commit to a large, multidisciplinary, scientific and technological undertaking to map and sequence the human genome.

  13. Biological Activity of Polynesian Calophyllum inophyllum Oil Extract on Human Skin Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ansel, Jean-Luc; Lupo, Elise; Mijouin, Lily; Guillot, Samuel; Butaud, Jean-François; Ho, Raimana; Lecellier, Gaël; Raharivelomanana, Phila; Pichon, Chantal

    2016-07-01

    Oil from the nuts of Calophyllum inophyllum, locally called "Tamanu oil" in French Polynesia, was traditionally used for wound healing and to cure various skin problems and ailments. The skin-active effect of "Tamanu oil emulsion" was investigated on human skin cells (keratinocytes and dermal fibroblasts) and showed cell proliferation, glycosaminoglycan and collagen production, and wound healing activity. Transcriptomic analysis of the treated cells revealed gene expression modulation including genes involved in the metabolic process implied in O-glycan biosynthesis, cell adhesion, and cell proliferation. The presence of neoflavonoids as bioactive constituents in Tamanu oil emulsion may contribute to these biological activities. Altogether, consistent data related to targeted histological and cellular functions brought new highlights on the mechanisms involved in these biological processes induced by Tamanu oil effects in skin cells.

  14. A multi-level biological approach to evaluate impacts of a major municipal effluent in wild St. Lawrence River yellow perch (Perca flavescens)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Houde, Magali, E-mail: magali.houde@ec.gc.ca [Centre Saint-Laurent, Environment Canada, 105 McGill Street, Montreal, QC H2Y 2E7 (Canada); Giraudo, Maeva, E-mail: maeva.giraudo@ec.gc.ca [Centre Saint-Laurent, Environment Canada, 105 McGill Street, Montreal, QC H2Y 2E7 (Canada); Douville, Mélanie, E-mail: melanie.douville@ec.gc.ca [Centre Saint-Laurent, Environment Canada, 105 McGill Street, Montreal, QC H2Y 2E7 (Canada); Bougas, Bérénice, E-mail: berenice.bougas.1@ulaval.ca [Institut de biologie intégrative et des systèmes, Université Laval, 1030, avenue de la Médecine, Québec, QC G1V 0A6 (Canada); Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique, Centre Eau Terre Environnement, 490 de la Couronne, Québec, QC G1K 9A9 (Canada); Couture, Patrice, E-mail: patrice.couture@ete.inrs.ca [Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique, Centre Eau Terre Environnement, 490 de la Couronne, Québec, QC G1K 9A9 (Canada); De Silva, Amila O., E-mail: amila.desilva@ec.gc.ca [Canada Centre for Inland Waters, Environment Canada, 867 Lakeshore Road, P.O. Box 5050, Burlington, ON L7R 4A6 (Canada); Spencer, Christine, E-mail: christine.spencer@ec.gc.ca [Canada Centre for Inland Waters, Environment Canada, 867 Lakeshore Road, P.O. Box 5050, Burlington, ON L7R 4A6 (Canada); Lair, Stéphane, E-mail: stephane.lair@umontreal.ca [Centre québécois sur la santé des animaux sauvages, Université de Montréal, C.P. 5000, St-Hyacinthe, QC J2S 7C6 (Canada); and others

    2014-11-01

    The development of integrated ecotoxicological approaches is of great interest in the investigation of global concerns such as impacts of municipal wastewater effluents on aquatic ecosystems. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of a major wastewater municipal effluent on fish using a multi-level biological approach, from gene transcription and enzyme activities to histological changes. Yellow perch (Perca flavescens) were selected based on their wide distribution, their commercial and recreational importance, and the availability of a customized microarray. Yellow perch were sampled upstream of a major municipal wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) and 4 km and 10 km downstream from its point of discharge in the St. Lawrence River (Quebec, Canada). Concentrations of perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and metals/trace elements in whole body homogenates were comparable to those from other industrialized regions of the world. Genomic results indicated that the transcription level of 177 genes was significantly different (p < 0.024) between exposed and non-exposed fish. Among these genes, 38 were found to be differentially transcribed at both downstream sites. Impacted genes were associated with biological processes and molecular functions such as immunity, detoxification, lipid metabolism/energy homeostasis (e.g., peroxisome proliferation), and retinol metabolism suggesting impact of WWTP on these systems. Moreover, antioxidant enzyme activities were more elevated in perch collected at the 4 km site. Biomarkers of lipid metabolism, biosynthetic activity, and aerobic capacities were significantly lower (p < 0.05) in fish residing near the outfall of the effluent. Histological examination of the liver indicated no differences between sites. Correlations between PFAS, PBDE, and metal/trace element tissue concentrations and markers of peroxisomal proliferation, oxidative stress, and retinoid metabolism were found

  15. Human Permanent Ectoparasites; Recent Advances on Biology and Clinical Significance of Demodex Mites: Narrative Review Article

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorota LITWIN

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Background: Demodex is a genus of mites living predominantly in mammalian pilosebaceous units. They are commonly detected in the skin of face, with increasing numbers in inflammatory lesions. Causation between Demodex mites and inflammatory diseases, such as rosacea, blepharitis, perioral and seborrhoeic dermatitis or chalazion, is controversially discussed. Clinical observations indicate a primary form of human Demodex infection. The aim of this review was to highlight the biological aspects of Demodex infestation and point out directions for the future research.Methods: We conducted a broad review based on the electronic database sources such as MEDLINE, PubMed and Scopus with regard to the characteristics of the Demodex species, methods of examination and worldwide epidemiology, molecular studies and its role in the complex human ecosystem.Results: Demodex mites are organisms with a worldwide importance as they act in indicating several dermatoses, under certain conditions. However, correlations between Demodex and other parasites or microorganisms occupying one host, as well as interactions between these arachnids and its symbiotic bacteria should be considered. There are few methods of human mites' examination depending on purpose of the study. Nevertheless, paying attention must be needed as polymorphism of Demodex species has been reported.Conclusion: Overall, the present review will focus on different aspects of Demodex mites’ biology and significance of these arachnids in human’s health.

  16. Synthetic biology meets bioprinting: enabling technologies for humans on Mars (and Earth)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.

    2016-01-01

    Human exploration off planet is severely limited by the cost of launching materials into space and by re-supply. Thus materials brought from Earth must be light, stable and reliable at destination. Using traditional approaches, a lunar or Mars base would require either transporting a hefty store of metals or heavy manufacturing equipment and construction materials for in situ extraction; both would severely limit any other mission objectives. Long-term human space presence requires periodic replenishment, adding a massive cost overhead. Even robotic missions often sacrifice science goals for heavy radiation and thermal protection. Biology has the potential to solve these problems because life can replicate and repair itself, and perform a wide variety of chemical reactions including making food, fuel and materials. Synthetic biology enhances and expands life's evolved repertoire. Using organisms as feedstock, additive manufacturing through bioprinting will make possible the dream of producing bespoke tools, food, smart fabrics and even replacement organs on demand. This new approach and the resulting novel products will enable human exploration and settlement on Mars, while providing new manufacturing approaches for life on Earth. PMID:27528764

  17. An Augmented γ-Spray System to Visualize Biological Effects for Human Body

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manabe, Seiya; Tenzou, Hideki; Kasuga, Takaaki; Iwakura, Yukiko; Johnston, Robert

    2017-09-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop a new educational system with an easy-to-use interface in order to support comprehension of the biological effects of radiation on the human body within a short period of time. A paint spray-gun was used as a gamma rays source mock-up for the system. The application screen shows the figure of a human body for radiation deposition using the γ-Sprayer, a virtual radiation source, as well as equivalent dosage and a panel for setting the irradiation conditions. While the learner stands in front of the PC monitor, the virtual radiation source is used to deposit radiation on the graphic of the human body that is displayed. Tissue damage is calculated using an interpolation method from the data calculated by the PHITS simulation code in advance while the learner is pulling the trigger with respect to the irradiation time, incident position, and distance from the screen. It was confirmed that the damage was well represented by the interpolation method. The augmented ?-Spray system was assessed by questionnaire. Pre-post questionnaire was taken for our 41 students in National Institute of Technology, Kagawa College. It was also confirmed that the system has a capability of teaching the basic radiation protection concept, quantitative feeling of the radiation dose, and the biological effects

  18. Biologically active recombinant human progastrin(6-80) contains a tightly bound calcium ion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baldwin, G S; Hollande, F; Yang, Z; Karelina, Y; Paterson, A; Strang, R; Fourmy, D; Neumann, G; Shulkes, A

    2001-03-16

    Evidence is accumulating that gastrin precursors may act as growth factors for the colonic mucosa in vivo. The aims of this study were to prepare recombinant human progastrin(6-80) and to investigate its structure and biological activities in vitro. Human progastrin(6-80) was expressed in Escherichia coli as a glutathione S-transferase fusion protein. After thrombin cleavage progastrin(6-80) was purified by reverse phase high pressure liquid chromatography and characterized by radioimmunoassay, amino acid sequencing, and mass spectrometry. Assays for metal ions by atomic emission spectroscopy revealed the presence of a single tightly bound calcium ion. Progastrin(6-80) at concentrations in the pm to nm range stimulated proliferation of the conditionally transformed mouse colon cell line YAMC. The observations that progastrin(6-80) did not bind to either the cholecystokinin (CCK)-A or the gastrin/CCK-B receptor expressed in COS cells and that antagonists selective for either receptor did not reverse the proliferative effects of progastrin(6-80) suggested that progastrin(6-80) stimulated proliferation independently of either the CCK-A or the gastrin/CCK-B receptor. We conclude that recombinant human progastrin(6-80) is biologically active and contains a single calcium ion. With the exception of the well known zinc-dependent polymerization of insulin and proinsulin, this is the first report of selective, high affinity binding of metal ions to a prohormone.

  19. Synthetic biology meets bioprinting: enabling technologies for humans on Mars (and Earth).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J

    2016-08-15

    Human exploration off planet is severely limited by the cost of launching materials into space and by re-supply. Thus materials brought from Earth must be light, stable and reliable at destination. Using traditional approaches, a lunar or Mars base would require either transporting a hefty store of metals or heavy manufacturing equipment and construction materials for in situ extraction; both would severely limit any other mission objectives. Long-term human space presence requires periodic replenishment, adding a massive cost overhead. Even robotic missions often sacrifice science goals for heavy radiation and thermal protection. Biology has the potential to solve these problems because life can replicate and repair itself, and perform a wide variety of chemical reactions including making food, fuel and materials. Synthetic biology enhances and expands life's evolved repertoire. Using organisms as feedstock, additive manufacturing through bioprinting will make possible the dream of producing bespoke tools, food, smart fabrics and even replacement organs on demand. This new approach and the resulting novel products will enable human exploration and settlement on Mars, while providing new manufacturing approaches for life on Earth.

  20. Chamber bioaerosol study: human emissions of size-resolved fluorescent biological aerosol particles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhangar, S; Adams, R I; Pasut, W; Huffman, J A; Arens, E A; Taylor, J W; Bruns, T D; Nazaroff, W W

    2016-04-01

    Humans are a prominent source of airborne biological particles in occupied indoor spaces, but few studies have quantified human bioaerosol emissions. The chamber investigation reported here employs a fluorescence-based technique to evaluate bioaerosols with high temporal and particle size resolution. In a 75-m(3) chamber, occupant emission rates of coarse (2.5-10 μm) fluorescent biological aerosol particles (FBAPs) under seated, simulated office-work conditions averaged 0.9 ± 0.3 million particles per person-h. Walking was associated with a 5-6× increase in the emission rate. During both walking and sitting, 60-70% or more of emissions originated from the floor. The increase in emissions during walking (vs. while sitting) was mainly attributable to release of particles from the floor; the associated increased vigor of upper body movements also contributed. Clothing, or its frictional interaction with human skin, was demonstrated to be a source of coarse particles, and especially of the highly fluorescent fraction. Emission rates of FBAPs previously reported for lecture classes were well bounded by the experimental results obtained in this chamber study. In both settings, the size distribution of occupant FBAP emissions had a dominant mode in the 3-5 μm diameter range.

  1. Scientific Goals and Objectives for the Human Exploration of Mars: 1. Biology and Atmosphere/Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levine, Joel S.; Garvin, J. B.; Anbar, A. D.; Beaty, D. W.; Bell, M. S.; Clancy, R. T.; Cockell, C. S.; Connerney, J. E.; Doran, P. T.; Delory, G.; Dickson, J. T.; Elphic, R. C.; Eppler, D. B.; Fernandez-Remolar, D. C.; Head, J. W.; Helper, M.; Gruener, J. E.; Heldmann, J.; Hipkin, V.; Lane, M. D.; Levy, J.; Moersch, J.; Ori, G. G.; Peach, L.; Poulet, F.

    2008-01-01

    To prepare for the exploration of Mars by humans, as outlined in the new national vision for Space Exploration (VSE), the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group (MEPAG), chartered by NASA's Mars Exploration Program (MEP), formed a Human Exploration of Mars Science Analysis Group (HEM-SAG), in March 2007. HEM-SAG was chartered to develop the scientific goals and objectives for the human exploration of Mars based on the Mars Scientific Goals, Objectives, Investigations, and Priorities.1 The HEM-SAG is one of several humans to Mars scientific, engineering and mission architecture studies chartered in 2007 to support NASA s plans for the human exploration of Mars. The HEM-SAG is composed of about 30 Mars scientists representing the disciplines of Mars biology, climate/atmosphere, geology and geophysics from the U.S., Canada, England, France, Italy and Spain. MEPAG selected Drs. James B. Garvin (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center) and Joel S. Levine (NASA Langley Research Center) to serve as HEMSAG co-chairs. The HEM-SAG team conducted 20 telecons and convened three face-to-face meetings from March through October 2007. The management of MEP and MEPAG were briefed on the HEM-SAG interim findings in May. The HEM-SAG final report was presented on-line to the full MEPAG membership and was presented at the MEPAG meeting on February 20-21, 2008. This presentation will outline the HEM-SAG biology and climate/atmosphere goals and objectives. A companion paper will outline the HEM-SAG geology and geophysics goals and objectives.

  2. Ospemifene metabolism in humans in vitro and in vivo: metabolite identification, quantitation, and CYP assignment of major hydroxylations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tolonen, Ari; Koskimies, Pasi; Turpeinen, Miia; Uusitalo, Jouko; Lammintausta, Risto; Pelkonen, Olavi

    2013-01-01

    The metabolism of ospemifene, a novel nonsteroidal selective estrogen receptor modulator, was investigated as part of its development. Metabolite identification, tentative quantitation, and CYP assignment of ospemifene were performed in human liver microsomes or homogenate incubations and in plasma samples from volunteer humans. The potential contributions of CYP enzymes were determined by recombinant human CYPs. Metabolite identification and tentative quantification were performed by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. The relative abundances of metabolites produced were dependent on ospemifene concentration and liver preparation, but the largest quantities of 4- and 4'-hydroxy-ospemifene (and their glucuronides in smaller quantities) were produced in human liver microsomes at low ospemifene concentrations. Other metabolites were detected in in vitro incubation with human liver including a direct glucuronide of ospemifene and some metabolites with only minor abundance. In human plasma samples, 4-hydroxy-ospemifene was the most abundant metabolite, representing about 25% of the abundance of the parent compound. All the other metabolites detected in plasma, including 4'-hydroxy-ospemifene, represented <7% of the abundance of ospemifene. Several CYP enzymes participated in 4-hydroxylation, including CYP2C9, CYP2C19, CYP2B6, and CYP3A4, whereas CYP3A enzymes were the only ones to catalyze 4'-hydroxylation. In vitro incubations with liver preparations provided a rather reliable starting point in the search for potential metabolites in clinical settings. The in vitro metabolite profile is informative for the in vivo metabolite profile, especially regarding the major hydroxylated metabolites. However, it is anticipated that extended in vivo exposures may result in an increased production of more distal metabolites from major metabolites.

  3. Roles of host and viral microRNAs in human cytomegalovirus biology

    OpenAIRE

    Dhuruvasan, Kavitha; Sivasubramanian, Geetha; Pellett, Philip E.

    2010-01-01

    Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) has a relatively large and complex genome, a protracted lytic replication cycle, and employs a strategy of replicational latency as part of its lifelong persistence in the infected host. An important form of gene regulation in plants and animals revolves around a type of small RNA known as microRNA (miRNA). miRNAs can serve as major regulators of key developmental pathways, as well as provide subtle forms of regulatory control. The human genome encodes over 900 mi...

  4. Quantification of Human Kallikrein-Related Peptidases in Biological Fluids by Multiplatform Targeted Mass Spectrometry Assays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karakosta, Theano D; Soosaipillai, Antoninus; Diamandis, Eleftherios P; Batruch, Ihor; Drabovich, Andrei P

    2016-09-01

    Human kallikrein-related peptidases (KLKs) are a group of 15 secreted serine proteases encoded by the largest contiguous cluster of protease genes in the human genome. KLKs are involved in coordination of numerous physiological functions including regulation of blood pressure, neuronal plasticity, skin desquamation, and semen liquefaction, and thus represent promising diagnostic and therapeutic targets. Until now, quantification of KLKs in biological and clinical samples was accomplished by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA). Here, we developed multiplex targeted mass spectrometry assays for the simultaneous quantification of all 15 KLKs. Proteotypic peptides for each KLK were carefully selected based on experimental data and multiplexed in single assays. Performance of assays was evaluated using three different mass spectrometry platforms including triple quadrupole, quadrupole-ion trap, and quadrupole-orbitrap instruments. Heavy isotope-labeled synthetic peptides with a quantifying tag were used for absolute quantification of KLKs in sweat, cervico-vaginal fluid, seminal plasma, and blood serum, with limits of detection ranging from 5 to 500 ng/ml. Analytical performance of assays was evaluated by measuring endogenous KLKs in relevant biological fluids, and results were compared with selected ELISAs. The multiplex targeted proteomic assays were demonstrated to be accurate, reproducible, sensitive, and specific alternatives to antibody-based assays. Finally, KLK4, a highly prostate-specific protein and a speculated biomarker of prostate cancer, was unambiguously detected and quantified by immunoenrichment-SRM assay in seminal plasma and blood serum samples from individuals with confirmed prostate cancer and negative biopsy. Mass spectrometry revealed exclusively the presence of a secreted isoform and thus unequivocally resolved earlier disputes about KLK4 identity in seminal plasma. Measurements of KLK4 in either 41 seminal plasma or 58 blood serum samples

  5. Major Shifts in Glial Regional Identity Are a Transcriptional Hallmark of Human Brain Aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lilach Soreq

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Gene expression studies suggest that aging of the human brain is determined by a complex interplay of molecular events, although both its region- and cell-type-specific consequences remain poorly understood. Here, we extensively characterized aging-altered gene expression changes across ten human brain regions from 480 individuals ranging in age from 16 to 106 years. We show that astrocyte- and oligodendrocyte-specific genes, but not neuron-specific genes, shift their regional expression patterns upon aging, particularly in the hippocampus and substantia nigra, while the expression of microglia- and endothelial-specific genes increase in all brain regions. In line with these changes, high-resolution immunohistochemistry demonstrated decreased numbers of oligodendrocytes and of neuronal subpopulations in the aging brain cortex. Finally, glial-specific genes predict age with greater precision than neuron-specific genes, thus highlighting the need for greater mechanistic understanding of neuron-glia interactions in aging and late-life diseases.

  6. Food Inhibits the Oral Bioavailability of the Major Green Tea Antioxidant Epigallocatechin Gallate in Humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nenad Naumovski

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The bioavailability of the most abundant and most active green tea antioxidant, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG remains uncertain. Therefore, the systemic absorption of EGCG was tested in healthy fasted humans. It was administered as capsules with water or with a light breakfast, or when incorporated within a strawberry sorbet. The results for plasma EGCG clearly revealed that taking EGCG capsules without food was better; the AUC was 2.7 and 3.9 times higher than when EGCG capsules were taken with a light breakfast (p = 0.044 or with EGCG imbedded in the strawberry sorbet (p = 0.019, respectively. This pattern was also observed for Cmax and Cav. Therefore, ingesting food at the same time as EGCG, whether it was imbedded or not in food, substantially inhibited the absorption of the catechin. As with some types of medications that are affected by food, it appears that EGCG should be taken without food in order to maximise its systemic absorption. Therefore, based on these findings, ingesting EGCG with water on an empty stomach is the most appropriate method for the oral delivery of EGCG in clinical trials where EGCG is to be investigated as a potential bioactive nutraceutical in humans.

  7. Persistent organochlorines in human breast milk from major metropolitan cities in India

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Devanathan, Gnanasekaran; Subramanian, Annamalai; Someya, Masayuki; Sudaryanto, Agus; Isobe, Tomohiko; Takahashi, Shin [Center for Marine Environmental Studies (CMES), Ehime University, Bunkyo-cho 2-5, Matsuyama 790-8577 (Japan); Chakraborty, Paromita [State Key Laboratory of Organic Geochemistry, Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640 (China); Tanabe, Shinsuke [Center for Marine Environmental Studies (CMES), Ehime University, Bunkyo-cho 2-5, Matsuyama 790-8577 (Japan)], E-mail: shinsuke@agr.ehime-u.ac.jp

    2009-01-15

    The present study was carried out to understand the current contamination status of organochlorine compounds (OCs) in human breast milk from three metropolitan cities in India (New Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata). Among the OCs analyzed, DDTs were predominant followed by HCHs and PCBs. CHLs and HCB levels were much lower. Contamination patterns were different in human milk found in our previous study in Chennai, a metropolitan city in southern India, indicating region specific exposure routes and variable sources. In comparison with previous data, levels of DDTs and HCHs generally declined with time, implying the effect of various bans and restrictions on their usage. No association between concentrations of OCs and demographic characteristics such as parity and age of mothers was observed which might be due to narrow range of mother's age. Estimated daily intake shows that some infants are exposed to OCs to a greater extent, particularly HCHs than the guideline standard. - Indian infants may be exposed to relatively high levels of DDTs and HCHs through mothers' milk.

  8. Human Development VII: A Spiral Fractal Model of Fine Structure of Physical Energy Could Explain Central Aspects of Biological Information, Biological Organization and Biological Creativity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Søren Ventegodt

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we have made a draft of a physical fractal essence of the universe, a sketch of a new cosmology, which we believe to lay at the root of our new holistic biological paradigm. We present the fractal roomy spiraled structures and the energy-rich dancing “infinite strings” or lines of the universe that our hypothesis is based upon. The geometric language of this cosmology is symbolic and both pre-mathematical and pre-philosophical. The symbols are both text and figures, and using these we step by step explain the new model that at least to some extent is able to explain the complex informational system behind morphogenesis, ontogenesis, regeneration and healing. We suggest that it is from this highly dynamic spiraled structure that organization of cells, organs, and the wholeness of the human being including consciousness emerge. The model of ““dancing fractal spirals” carries many similarities to premodern cultures descriptions of the energy of the life and universe. Examples are the Native American shamanistic descriptions of their perception of energy and the old Indian Yogis descriptions of the life-energy within the body and outside. Similar ideas of energy and matter are found in the modern superstring theories. The model of the informational system of the organism gives new meaning to Bateson’s definition of information: “A difference that makes a difference”, and indicates how information-directed self-organization can exist on high structural levels in living organisms, giving birth to their subjectivity and consciousness.

  9. Genome-scale modeling of human metabolism - a systems biology approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mardinoglu, Adil; Gatto, Francesco; Nielsen, Jens

    2013-09-01

    Altered metabolism is linked to the appearance of various human diseases and a better understanding of disease-associated metabolic changes may lead to the identification of novel prognostic biomarkers and the development of new therapies. Genome-scale metabolic models (GEMs) have been employed for studying human metabolism in a systematic manner, as well as for understanding complex human diseases. In the past decade, such metabolic models - one of the fundamental aspects of systems biology - have started contributing to the understanding of the mechanistic relationship between genotype and phenotype. In this review, we focus on the construction of the Human Metabolic Reaction database, the generation of healthy cell type- and cancer-specific GEMs using different procedures, and the potential applications of these developments in the study of human metabolism and in the identification of metabolic changes associated with various disorders. We further examine how in silico genome-scale reconstructions can be employed to simulate metabolic flux distributions and how high-throughput omics data can be analyzed in a context-dependent fashion. Insights yielded from this mechanistic modeling approach can be used for identifying new therapeutic agents and drug targets as well as for the discovery of novel biomarkers. Finally, recent advancements in genome-scale modeling and the future challenge of developing a model of whole-body metabolism are presented. The emergent contribution of GEMs to personalized and translational medicine is also discussed. Copyright © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  10. A shift in paradigm towards human biology-based systems for cholestatic-liver diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noor, Fozia

    2015-12-01

    Cholestatic-liver diseases (CLDs) arise from diverse causes ranging from genetic factors to drug-induced cholestasis. The so-called diseases of civilization (obesity, diabetes, metabolic disorders, non-alcoholic liver disease, cardiovascular diseases, etc.) are intricately implicated in liver and gall bladder diseases. Although CLDs have been extensively studied, there seem to be important gaps in the understanding of human disease. Despite the fact that many animal models exist and substantial clinical data are available, translation of this knowledge towards therapy has been disappointingly limited. Recent advances in liver cell culture such as in vivo-like 3D cultivation of human primary hepatic cells, human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived hepatocytes; and cutting-edge analytical techniques such as 'omics' technologies and high-content screenings could play a decisive role in deeper mechanistic understanding of CLDs. This Topical Review proposes a roadmap to human biology-based research using omics technologies providing quantitative information on mechanisms in an adverse outcome/disease pathway framework. With modern sensitive tools, a shift in paradigm in human disease research seems timely and even inevitable to overcome species barriers in translation.

  11. Human skin wounds: A major and snowballing threat to public health and the economy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sen, C.K.; Gordillo, G.M.; Roy, S.

    2009-01-01

    In the United States, chronic wounds affect 6.5 million patients. An estimated excess of US$25 billion is spent annually on treatment of chronic wounds and the burden is rapidly growing due to increasing health care costs, an aging population and a sharp rise in the incidence of diabetes and obes......In the United States, chronic wounds affect 6.5 million patients. An estimated excess of US$25 billion is spent annually on treatment of chronic wounds and the burden is rapidly growing due to increasing health care costs, an aging population and a sharp rise in the incidence of diabetes...... overshadowed the significance of wounds per se as a major health problem. For example, NIH's Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tool (RePORT; http://report.nih.gov/), directed at providing access to estimates of funding for various disease conditions does list several rare diseases but does not list wounds...

  12. Asteroid Redirect Mission - Next Major stepping-stone to Human Exploration of NEOs and beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez, Natalia

    2016-07-01

    In response to NASA's Asteroid Initiative, an Asteroid Redirect and Robotic Mission (ARRM) is being studied by a NASA cohort, led by JPL, to enable the capture a multi-ton boulder from the surface of a Near-Earth Asteroid and return it to cislunar space for subsequent human and robotic exploration. The mission would boost our understanding of NEOs and develop technological capabilities for Planetary Defense, shall a NEO come up on a collision course. The benefits of this mission can extend our capabilities to explore farther into space, as well as create a new commercial sector in Space Mining, which would make materials in Space available for our use. ARRM would leverage and advance current knowledge of higher-efficiency propulsion systems with a new Solar Electric Propulsion demonstration (similar to that on the Dawn spacecraft) to be incorporated into future Mars Missions.

  13. Lateral gene transfer of an ABC transporter complex between major constituents of the human gut microbiome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meehan Conor J

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Several links have been established between the human gut microbiome and conditions such as obesity and inflammatory bowel syndrome. This highlights the importance of understanding what properties of the gut microbiome can affect the health of the human host. Studies have been undertaken to determine the species composition of this microbiome and infer functional profiles associated with such host properties. However, lateral gene transfer (LGT between community members may result in misleading taxonomic attributions for the recipient organisms, thus making species-function links difficult to establish. Results We identified a peptides/nickel transport complex whose components differed in abundance based upon levels of host obesity, and assigned the encoded proteins to members of the microbial community. Each protein was assigned to several distinct taxonomic groups, with moderate levels of agreement observed among different proteins in the complex. Phylogenetic trees of these proteins produced clusters that differed greatly from taxonomic attributions and indicated that habitat-directed LGT of this complex is likely to have occurred, though not always between the same partners. Conclusions These findings demonstrate that certain membrane transport systems may be an important factor within an obese-associated gut microbiome and that such complexes may be acquired several times by different strains of the same species. Additionally, an example of individual proteins from different organisms being transferred into one operon was observed, potentially demonstrating a functional complex despite the donors of the subunits being taxonomically disparate. Our results also highlight the potential impact of habitat-directed LGT on the resident microbiota.

  14. Lipoproteins are major targets of the polyclonal human T cell response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seshadri, Chetan; Turner, Marie T; Lewinsohn, David M; Moody, D Branch; Van Rhijn, Ildiko

    2013-01-01

    Most vaccines and basic studies of T cell epitopes in Mycobacterium tuberculosis emphasize water-soluble proteins that are secreted into the extracellular space and presented in the context of MHC class II. Much less is known about the role of Ags retained within the cell wall. We used polyclonal T cells from infected humans to probe for responses to immunodominant Ags in the M. tuberculosis cell wall. We found that the magnitude of response to secreted or cell wall intrinsic compounds was similar among healthy controls, patients with latent tuberculosis, and patients with active tuberculosis. Individual responses to secreted Ags and cell wall extract were strongly correlated (r(2) = 0.495, p = 0.001), suggesting that T cells responding to cell wall and secreted Ags are present at similar frequency. Surprisingly, T cell stimulatory factors intrinsic to the cell wall partition into organic solvents; however, these responses are not explained by CD1-mediated presentation of lipids. Instead, we find that molecules soluble in organic solvents are dependent upon MHC class II and recognized by IFN-γ-secreting CD4(+) T cells. We reasoned that MHC class II-dependent Ags extracting into lipid mixtures might be found among triacylated lipoproteins present in mycobacteria. We used M. tuberculosis lacking prolipoprotein signal peptidase A (lspA), an enzyme required for lipoprotein synthesis, to demonstrate loss of polyclonal T cell responses. Our results demonstrate the use of bacterial genetics to identify lipoproteins as an unexpected and immunodominant class of cell wall-associated Ags targeted by the polyclonal human T cell response to M. tuberculosis.

  15. Human Papillomavirus Genotype as a Major Determinant of the Course of Cervical Cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Niakan M

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Certain types of human papillomavrus (HPV are associated with cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC. The aim of theobservations reported here was to determine whether the prognosis for invasive cancers of the uterine cervix is related to the type of human papillomavirus asociated with the tumor. Material and Methods: Twenty Patients with invasive cervical cancer were prospectively registered from 2000 to 2001. HPV typing was performed by insitu hybridization(ISH on DNA extracted from frozen, formal in-fixed, paraffin-embedded tumor specimens. The specimens mostly represented classifications SCC Stage 1 and Stage 2 of the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (Table 1. HPV- DNA was detected by insituhybridization, using three different DNA Probes: types 6/11, 16/18 and 31/33/51. Results: HPV DNA was detected in the nuclei of SCC tumor cells in 13(65% of 20 cases. Of the 13 HPV-DNA positive cases three reacted only with the HPV 31/33/51 probe, two reacted only with the 16/18 probe, three showed strong hybridization for both 31/33/51 and 6/11probes, four showed 6/11 and 16/18 genotypes and one case reacted with 31/33/51,6/11and16/18probes. Conclusion: The prognosis for invasive cancers of the uterine cervix is dependent on the oncogenic potential of the associated HPV type. HPV typing may provide a prognostic indicator for individual patients and is of potential use in defining specific therapies against HPV harboring tumor cells. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that HPV infection is the primary cause of cervical neoplasia. Furthermore, they support HPV vaccine research to prevent cervical cancer and efforts to develop HPV DNA diagnostic tests.

  16. Hypertrophic adenoid is a major infection site of human bocavirus 1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proenca-Modena, J L; Paula, F E; Buzatto, G P; Carenzi, L R; Saturno, T H; Prates, M C; Silva, M L; Delcaro, L S; Valera, F C P; Tamashiro, E; Anselmo-Lima, W T; Arruda, E

    2014-08-01

    Human bocavirus 1 (HBoV1) is associated with respiratory infections worldwide, mainly in children. Similar to other parvoviruses, it is believed that HBoV1 can persist for long periods of time in humans, probably through maintaining concatemers of the virus single-stranded DNA genome in the nuclei of infected cells. Recently, HBoV-1 was detected in high rates in adenoid and palatine tonsils samples from patients with chronic adenotonsillar diseases, but nothing is known about the virus replication levels in those tissues. A 3-year prospective hospital-based study was conducted to detect and quantify HBoV1 DNA and mRNAs in samples of the adenoids (AD), palatine tonsils (PT), nasopharyngeal secretions (NPS), and peripheral blood (PB) from patients undergoing tonsillectomy for tonsillar hypertrophy or recurrent tonsillitis. HBoV1 was detected in 25.3% of the AD samples, while the rates of detection in the PT, NPS, and PB samples were 7.2%, 10.5%, and 1.7%, respectively. The viral loads were higher in AD samples, and 27.3% of the patients with HBoV had mRNA detectable in this tissue. High viral loads and detectable mRNA in the AD were associated with HBoV1 detection in the other sample sites. The adenoids are an important site of HBoV1 replication and persistence in children with tonsillar hypertrophy. The adenoids contain high HBoV1 loads and are frequently positive for HBoV mRNA, and this is associated with the detection of HBoV1 in secretions.

  17. The role of psychosocial and biological variables in separating chronic and non-chronic major depression and early-late-onset dysthymia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szádóczky, E; Fazekas, I; Rihmer, Z; Arató, M

    1994-09-01

    Psychosocial (sociodemographic characteristics, loss and separation and family atmosphere in childhood, recent life events) and biological (family history, DST, TRH-test) variables were investigated in 180 patients with Major Depression (MD) and Dysthymic Disorder (DD). The aim of the study was to reveal certain differences between the chronic and non-chronic course of MD and the early- and late-onset subtypes of dysthymia. When comparing the two course patterns of MD, a higher rate of malignant tumours among first-degree relatives, a greater number of long-lasting stress situations before the index depressive episode, longer duration of the previous episodes, less frequent DST nonsuppression, and a blunted TSH response to TRH were found in patients with a chronic course of MD. Several factors seem to influence the course pattern of MD, or else the chronic form represents a subgroup within MD. The late-onset dysthymics were mainly women with a low level of education, a lower suicidal tendency, normal suppression in DST, and a lack of blunted TSH responses to TRH administration during the period of double depression. The early-onset dysthymics showed a higher number of persons who had never married, who presented a more traumatic and frustrating childhood background, and who had a higher rate of DST non-suppressors and blunted TSH responses after TRH administration during the period of their double depression. Our data suggest that late-onset dysthymia might be a biologically distinct subgroup of chronic depression.

  18. Comparing biology majors from large lecture classes with TA-facilitated laboratories to those from small lecture classes with faculty-facilitated laboratories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodman, Barbara E; Koster, Karen L; Redinius, Patrick L

    2005-06-01

    The teaching faculty for this course sought to address their own concerns about the quality of student learning in an impersonal large lecture biology class for majors, the difficulties in getting to know each student by name, and difficulties in soliciting answers and reactions from the students during the lecture. Questions addressed by this study were, Do active-learning activities in a small and personal lecture setting enhance student learning more than active-learning activities in large impersonal lectures? and Are students more satisfied with an educational experience in a small and personal lecture setting? Based on faculty perceptions of how they best relate to their students, the prediction was that the students in the experimental group with small lecture classes and increased direct contact with the teaching faculty would learn physiological principles better than the students in the control group in the large impersonal lecture portion of the course. One of the laboratory sections of this large enrollment biology course was randomly selected to be taught with separate small lectures by the teaching faculty. In addition, the teaching faculty participated in the laboratory with these students during their experiments correlated with the lecture material. The students in both groups were compared by pre- and posttests of physiological principles, final course grades, and class satisfaction surveys.

  19. Novelty or knowledge? A study of using a student response system in non-major biology courses at a community college

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thames, Tasha Herrington

    The advancement in technology integration is laying the groundwork of a paradigm shift in the higher education system (Noonoo, 2011). The National Dropout Prevention Center (n.d.) claims that technology offers some of the best opportunities for presenting instruction to engage students in meaningful education, addressing multiple intelligences, and adjusting to students' various learning styles. The purpose of this study was to investigate if implementing clicker technology would have a statistically significant difference on student retention and student achievement, while controlling for learning styles, for students in non-major biology courses who were and were not subjected to the technology. This study also sought to identify if students perceived the use of clickers as beneficial to their learning. A quantitative quasi-experimental research design was utilized to determine the significance of differences in pre/posttest achievement scores between students who participated during the fall semester in 2014. Overall, 118 students (n = 118) voluntarily enrolled in the researcher's fall non-major Biology course at a southern community college. A total of 71 students were assigned to the experimental group who participated in instruction incorporating the ConcepTest Process with clicker technology along with traditional lecture. The remaining 51 students were assigned to the control group who participated in a traditional lecture format with peer instruction embedded. Statistical analysis revealed the experimental clicker courses did have higher posttest scores than the non-clicker control courses, but this was not significant (p >.05). Results also implied that clickers did not statistically help retain students to complete the course. Lastly, the results indicated that there were no significant statistical difference in student's clicker perception scores between the different learning style preferences.

  20. The potential of plants as a system for the development and production of human biologics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Qiang; Davis, Keith R.

    2016-01-01

    The growing promise of plant-made biologics is highlighted by the success story of ZMapp™ as a potentially life-saving drug during the Ebola outbreak of 2014-2016. Current plant expression platforms offer features beyond the traditional advantages of low cost, high scalability, increased safety, and eukaryotic protein modification. Novel transient expression vectors have been developed that allow the production of vaccines and therapeutics at unprecedented speed to control potential pandemics or bioterrorism attacks. Plant-host engineering provides a method for producing proteins with unique and uniform mammalian post-translational modifications, providing opportunities to develop biologics with increased efficacy relative to their mammalian cell-produced counterparts. Recent demonstrations that plant-made proteins can function as biocontrol agents of foodborne pathogens further exemplify the potential utility of plant-based protein production. However, resolving the technical and regulatory challenges of commercial-scale production, garnering acceptance from large pharmaceutical companies, and obtaining U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for several major classes of biologics are essential steps to fulfilling the untapped potential of this technology. PMID:27274814

  1. The potential of plants as a system for the development and production of human biologics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Qiang; Davis, Keith R

    2016-01-01

    The growing promise of plant-made biologics is highlighted by the success story of ZMapp™ as a potentially life-saving drug during the Ebola outbreak of 2014-2016. Current plant expression platforms offer features beyond the traditional advantages of low cost, high scalability, increased safety, and eukaryotic protein modification. Novel transient expression vectors have been developed that allow the production of vaccines and therapeutics at unprecedented speed to control potential pandemics or bioterrorism attacks. Plant-host engineering provides a method for producing proteins with unique and uniform mammalian post-translational modifications, providing opportunities to develop biologics with increased efficacy relative to their mammalian cell-produced counterparts. Recent demonstrations that plant-made proteins can function as biocontrol agents of foodborne pathogens further exemplify the potential utility of plant-based protein production. However, resolving the technical and regulatory challenges of commercial-scale production, garnering acceptance from large pharmaceutical companies, and obtaining U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for several major classes of biologics are essential steps to fulfilling the untapped potential of this technology.

  2. The Biology of Kaposi's Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus and the Infection of Human Immunodeficiency Virus

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Di QIN; Chun LU

    2008-01-01

    Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV),also known as human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8),is discovered in 1994 from Kaposi's sarcoma (KS) lesion of an acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)patient.In addition to its association with KS,KSHV has also been implicated as the causative agent of two other AIDS-associated malignancies:primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) and multicentric Castleman's disease (MCD).KSHV is a complex DNA virus that not only has the ability to promote cellular growth and survival for tumor development,but also can provoke deregulated angiogenesis,inflammation,and modulate the patient's immune system in favor of tumor growth.As KSHV is a necessary but not sufficient etiological factor for KS,human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is a very important cofactor.Here we review the basic information about the biology of KSHV,development of pathogenesis and interaction between KSHV and HIV.

  3. Isolation and culture of human hematopoietic progenitors for studies of dendritic cell biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svensson, Mattias

    2009-01-01

    Understanding the regulation of distinct dendritic cell (DC) function and differentiation pathways is important in many physiological and pathophysiological processes. This includes infectious and neoplastic diseases, vaccination and immunotherapy, allograft rejection, and the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases. Isolation and culture of human hematopoietic progenitor cells provide a valuable model for studies on DC biology and may help uncover new means to manipulate DC differentiation and function in therapeutic settings. Here, a detailed protocol for the isolation of CD34+ hematopoietic progenitor cells from human cord blood is described. The isolated cell population consists of approximately 85% CD34+ CD45+ hematopoietic progenitor cells that in response to granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) plus tumor necrosis factor (TNF) expand and differentiate into CD11c+ HLA-DR+ DC-expressing CD1a.

  4. [Gamma interferon induced in human leukocytes by phytohemagglutinin: its production and biological characteristics].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danielescu, G; Maniu, H; Georgescu, T; Cajal, N

    1988-01-01

    Human gamma type interferon (IFN) preparations were obtained through phytohemagglutinin stimulation of leukocytes from the peripheral blood. Biological value of these preparations varied between 160 u and 800 u/ml, depending on leukocyte incubation medium, culture system and inductor conservation. The rising of the antiviral activity through association between gamma (3 u) and alpha (27 u) interferons was revealed by the virus quantity reduction (in this case the vesicular stomatitis virus was used) during a 24-hour multiplication cycle. The protection ensured by the mixture of the two types of interferon was about ten times higher than the additive effect of the two preparations. Study of the antiproliferative activity of a gamma interferon preparation was conducted on two human cell lines of tumoral origin (T-10 from a glioblastoma, and HEp-2) and revealed the difficulties to quantify precisely this property of the crude gamma interferon preparations.

  5. Genome dynamics of the human embryonic kidney 293 lineage in response to cell biology manipulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Yao-Cheng; Boone, Morgane; Meuris, Leander; Lemmens, Irma; Van Roy, Nadine; Soete, Arne; Reumers, Joke; Moisse, Matthieu; Plaisance, Stéphane; Drmanac, Radoje; Chen, Jason; Speleman, Frank; Lambrechts, Diether; Van de Peer, Yves; Tavernier, Jan; Callewaert, Nico

    2014-09-03

    The HEK293 human cell lineage is widely used in cell biology and biotechnology. Here we use whole-genome resequencing of six 293 cell lines to study the dynamics of this aneuploid genome in response to the manipulations used to generate common 293 cell derivatives, such as transformation and stable clone generation (293T); suspension growth adaptation (293S); and cytotoxic lectin selection (293SG). Remarkably, we observe that copy number alteration detection could identify the genomic region that enabled cell survival under selective conditions (i.c. ricin selection). Furthermore, we present methods to detect human/vector genome breakpoints and a user-friendly visualization tool for the 293 genome data. We also establish that the genome structure composition is in steady state for most of these cell lines when standard cell culturing conditions are used. This resource enables novel and more informed studies with 293 cells, and we will distribute the sequenced cell lines to this effect.

  6. Biological Characteristics of Human Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cell Cultured in Vitro

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    FA Xian'en; WANG Lixia; HOU Jianfeng; ZHANG Ruicheng; WANG Haiyong; YANG Chenyuan

    2005-01-01

    Summary: Some biological characteristics of human bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) cultured in vitro were observed. hMSCs were isolated from bone marrow and purified by density gradient centrifugation method, and then cultured in vitro. The proliferation and growth characteristics of hMSCs were observed in primary and passage culture. MSCs of passage 3 were examined for the purify by positive rate of CD29 and CD44 through flow cytometry. Human bone marrow MSCs showed active proliferation capacity in vitro. The purify of MSCs separated by our method was higher than 90 %. It was concluded that hMSCs have been successfully cultured and expanded effectively. It provided a foundation for further investigation and application of MSCs.

  7. Review of the biological effects of weightlessness on the human endocrine system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes-Fulford, M.

    1993-01-01

    Studies from space flights over the past two decades have demonstrated that there are basic physiological changes in humans during space flight. These changes include cephalad fluid shifts, loss of fluid and electrolytes, loss of muscle mass, space motion sickness, anemia, reduced immune response, and loss of calcium and mineralized bone. The cause of most of these manifestations is not known but the general approach has been to investigate systemic and hormonal changes. However, data from the 1973-1974 Skylabs, Spacelab 3 (SL-3), Spacelab D-I (SL-DI), and now the new SLS-1 missions support a more basic biological response to microgravity that may occur at the tissue, cellular, and molecular level. This report summarizes ground-based and SLS-1 experiments that examined the mechanism of loss of red blood cell mass in humans, the loss of bone mass and lowered osteoblast growth under space flight conditions, and loss of immune function in microgravity.

  8. Pluripotent stem cell-derived organoids: using principles of developmental biology to grow human tissues in a dish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCauley, Heather A; Wells, James M

    2017-03-15

    Pluripotent stem cell (PSC)-derived organoids are miniature, three-dimensional human tissues generated by the application of developmental biological principles to PSCs in vitro The approach to generate organoids uses a combination of directed differentiation, morphogenetic processes, and the intrinsically driven self-assembly of cells that mimics organogenesis in the developing embryo. The resulting organoids have remarkable cell type complexity, architecture and function similar to their in vivo counterparts. In the past five years, human PSC-derived organoids with components of all three germ layers have been generated, resulting in the establishment of a new human model system. Here, and in the accompanying poster, we provide an overview of how principles of developmental biology have been essential for generating human organoids in vitro, and how organoids are now being used as a primary research tool to investigate human developmental biology. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  9. Holistic systems biology approaches to molecular mechanisms of human helper T cell differentiation to functionally distinct subsets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Z; Lönnberg, T; Lahesmaa, R

    2013-08-01

    Current knowledge of helper T cell differentiation largely relies on data generated from mouse studies. To develop therapeutical strategies combating human diseases, understanding the molecular mechanisms how human naïve T cells differentiate to functionally distinct T helper (Th) subsets as well as studies on human differentiated Th cell subsets is particularly valuable. Systems biology approaches provide a holistic view of the processes of T helper differentiation, enable discovery of new factors and pathways involved and generation of new hypotheses to be tested to improve our understanding of human Th cell differentiation and immune-mediated diseases. Here, we summarize studies where high-throughput systems biology approaches have been exploited to human primary T cells. These studies reveal new factors and signalling pathways influencing T cell differentiation towards distinct subsets, important for immune regulation. Such information provides new insights into T cell biology and into targeting immune system for therapeutic interventions.

  10. Knowledge Gaps in Rodent Pancreas Biology: Taking Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Pancreatic Beta Cells into Our Own Hands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santosa, Munirah Mohamad; Low, Blaise Su Jun; Pek, Nicole Min Qian; Teo, Adrian Kee Keong

    2015-01-01

    In the field of stem cell biology and diabetes, we and others seek to derive mature and functional human pancreatic β cells for disease modeling and cell replacement therapy. Traditionally, knowledge gathered from rodents is extended to human pancreas developmental biology research involving human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs). While much has been learnt from rodent pancreas biology in the early steps toward Pdx1(+) pancreatic progenitors, much less is known about the transition toward Ngn3(+) pancreatic endocrine progenitors. Essentially, the later steps of pancreatic β cell development and maturation remain elusive to date. As a result, the most recent advances in the stem cell and diabetes field have relied upon combinatorial testing of numerous growth factors and chemical compounds in an arbitrary trial-and-error fashion to derive mature and functional human pancreatic β cells from hPSCs. Although this hit-or-miss approach appears to have made some headway in maturing human pancreatic β cells in vitro, its underlying biology is vaguely understood. Therefore, in this mini-review, we discuss some of these late-stage signaling pathways that are involved in human pancreatic β cell differentiation and highlight our current understanding of their relevance in rodent pancreas biology. Our efforts here unravel several novel signaling pathways that can be further studied to shed light on unexplored aspects of rodent pancreas biology. New investigations into these signaling pathways are expected to advance our knowledge in human pancreas developmental biology and to aid in the translation of stem cell biology in the context of diabetes treatments.

  11. Dendritic Cells in the Context of Human Tumors: Biology and Experimental Tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volovitz, Ilan; Melzer, Susanne; Amar, Sarah; Bocsi, József; Bloch, Merav; Efroni, Sol; Ram, Zvi; Tárnok, Attila

    2016-01-01

    Dendritic cells (DC) are the most potent and versatile antigen-presenting cells (APC) in the immune system. DC have an exceptional ability to comprehend the immune context of a captured antigen based on molecular signals identified from its vicinity. The analyzed information is then conveyed to other immune effector cells. Such capability enables DC to play a pivotal role in mediating either an immunogenic response or immune tolerance towards an acquired antigen. This review summarizes current knowledge on DC in the context of human tumors. It covers the basics of human DC biology, elaborating on the different markers, morphology and function of the different subsets of human DC. Human blood-borne DC are comprised of at least three subsets consisting of one plasmacytoid DC (pDC) and two to three myeloid DC (mDC) subsets. Some tissues have unique DC. Each subset has a different phenotype and function and may induce pro-tumoral or anti-tumoral effects. The review also discusses two methods fundamental to the research of DC on the single-cell level: multicolor flow cytometry (FCM) and image-based cytometry (IC). These methods, along with new genomics and proteomics tools, can provide high-resolution information on specific DC subsets and on immune and tumor cells with which they interact. The different layers of collected biological data may then be integrated using Immune-Cytomics modeling approaches. Such novel integrated approaches may help unravel the complex network of cellular interactions that DC carry out within tumors, and may help harness this complex immunological information into the development of more effective treatments for cancer.

  12. Association between latent toxoplasmosis and major depression, generalised anxiety disorder and panic disorder in human adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gale, Shawn D; Brown, Bruce L; Berrett, Andrew; Erickson, Lance D; Hedges, Dawson W

    2014-08-01

    Latent infection with the apicomplexan Toxoplasma gondii (Nicolle et Manceaux, 1908) has been associated with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and self-harm behaviour. However, the potential relationship between T. gondii immunoglobulin G antibody (IgG) seropositivity and generalised-anxiety disorder (GAD) and panic disorder (PD) has not been investigated. The associations between serum reactivity to T. gondii and major depressive disorder (MDD), GAD and PD were evaluated in a total sample of 1 846 adult participants between the ages of 20 and 39 years from the United States Center for Disease Control's National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). Approximately 16% of the overall sample was seropositive for T. gondii and 7% of the sample met criteria for MDD, 2% for GAD and 2% for PD. There were no significant associations between T. gondii IgG seroprevalence and MDD (OR = 0.484, 95% CI = 0.186-1.258), GAD (OR = 0.737, 95% CI = 0.218-2.490) or PD (OR = 0.683, 95% CI = 0.206-2.270) controlling for sex, ethnicity, poverty-to-income ratio and educational attainment. However, limited evidence suggested a possible association between absolute antibody titres for T. gondii and GAD and PD but not MDD. Toxoplasma gondii seroprevalence was not associated with MDD, GAD or PD within the context of the limitations of this study, although there may be an association of T. gondii serointensity with and GAD and PD, which requires further study.

  13. A Human Corneal Epithelial Cell Line Model for Limbal Stem Cell Biology and Limbal Immunobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaharuddin, Bakiah; Ahmad, Sajjad; Md Latar, Nani; Ali, Simi; Meeson, Annette

    2016-10-14

    : Limbal stem cell (LSC) deficiency is a visually debilitating condition caused by abnormal maintenance of LSCs. It is treated by transplantation of donor-derived limbal epithelial cells (LECs), the success of which depends on the presence and quality of LSCs within the transplant. Understanding the immunobiological responses of these cells within the transplants could improve cell engraftment and survival. However, human corneal rings used as a source of LSCs are not always readily available for research purposes. As an alternative, we hypothesized that a human telomerase-immortalized corneal epithelial cell (HTCEC) line could be used as a model for studying LSC immunobiology. HTCEC constitutively expressed human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I but not class II molecules. However, when stimulated by interferon-γ, HTCECs then expressed HLA class II antigens. Some HTCECs were also migratory in response to CXCL12 and expressed stem cell markers, Nanog, Oct4, and Sox2. In addition because both HTCECs and LECs contain side population (SP) cells, which are an enriched LSC population, we used these SP cells to show that some HTCEC SP cells coexpressed ABCG2 and ABCB5. HTCEC SP and non-side population (NSP) cells also expressed CXCR4, but the SP cells expressed higher levels. Both were capable of colony formation, but the NSP colonies were smaller and contained fewer cells. In addition, HTCECs expressed ΔNp63α. These results suggest the HTCEC line is a useful model for further understanding LSC biology by using an in vitro approach without reliance on a supply of human tissue. Limbal stem cell deficiency is a painful eye condition caused by abnormal maintenance of limbal stem cells. It is treated by transplantation of limbal epithelial cells derived from human tissue. The success of this treatment depends of the quality of the cells transplanted; however, some transplants fail. Understanding more about the immunobiology of these cells within the transplants could

  14. Biological effects of atmospheric particles on human bronchial epithelial cells. Comparison with diesel exhaust particles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baulig, Augustin; Sourdeval, Matthieu; Meyer, Martine; Marano, Francelyne; Baeza-Squiban, Armelle

    2003-01-01

    Epidemiological studies have associated the increase of respiratory disorders with high levels of ambient particulate matter (PM) levels although the underlying biological mechanisms are unclear. PM are a complex mixture of particles with different origins but in urban areas, they mainly contain soots from transport like Diesel exhaust particles (DEP). In order to determine whether PM biological effects can be explained by the presence of DEP, the effects of urban PM, DEP and carbon black particles (CB) were compared on a human bronchial epithelial cell line (16-HBE14o-). Two types of PM were used : reference material (RPM) and PM with an aerodynamic diameter particles. However, DEP and to a lower extent PM inhibited cell proliferation, induced the release of a pro-inflammatory cytokine, GM-CSF, and generated a pro-oxidant state as shown by the increased intracellular peroxides production. By contrast, CB never induced such effects. Nevertheless CB are more endocytosed than DEP whereas PM are the less endocytosed particles. In conclusion, PM induced to a lower extent the same biological effects than DEP in 16-HBE cells suggesting that particle characteristics should be thoroughly considered in order to clearly correlate adverse effects of PM to their composition and to clarify the role of DEP in PM effects.

  15. [Glanders--a potential disease for biological warfare in humans and animals].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehavi, Ofer; Aizenstien, Orna; Katz, Lior H; Hourvitz, Ariel

    2002-05-01

    Infection with Burkholderia mallei (formerly Pseudomonas mallei) can cause a subcutaneous infection known as "farcy" or can disseminate to condition known as Glanders. It is primarily a disease affecting horses, donkeys and mules. In humans, Glanders can produce four types of disease: localized form, pulmonary form, septicemia, and chronic form. Necrosis of the tracheobronchial tree and pustular skin lesions characterize acute infection with B. mallei. Other symptoms include febrile pneumonia, if the organism was inhaled, or signs of sepsis and multiple abscesses, if the skin was the port of entry. Glanders is endemic in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and Central and South America. Glanders has low contiguous potential, but because of the efficacy of aerosolized dissemination and the lethal nature of the disease, B. mallei was considered a candidate for biological warfare. During World War I, Glanders was believed to have been spread to infect large numbers of Russian horses and mules on the Eastern front. The Japanese infected horses, civilians and prisoners of war during World War II. The USA and the Soviet Union have shown interest in B. mallei in their biological warfare program. The treatment is empiric and includes mono or poly-therapy with Ceftazidime, Sulfadiazine, Trimethoprim + Sulfamethoxazol, Gentamicin, Imipenem etc. Aggressive control measures essentially eliminated Glanders from the west. However, with the resurgent concern about biological warfare, B. mallei is now being studied in a few laboratories worldwide. This review provides an overview of the disease and presents the only case reported in the western world since 1949.

  16. Gene expression platform for synthetic biology in the human pathogen Streptococcus pneumoniae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorg, Robin A; Kuipers, Oscar P; Veening, Jan-Willem

    2015-03-20

    The human pathogen Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcus) is a bacterium that owes its success to complex gene expression regulation patterns on both the cellular and the population level. Expression of virulence factors enables a mostly hazard-free presence of the commensal, in balance with the host and niche competitors. Under specific circumstances, changes in this expression can result in a more aggressive behavior and the reversion to the invasive form as pathogen. These triggering conditions are very difficult to study due to the fact that environmental cues are often unknown or barely possible to simulate outside the host (in vitro). An alternative way of investigating expression patterns is found in synthetic biology approaches of reconstructing regulatory networks that mimic an observed behavior with orthogonal components. Here, we created a genetic platform suitable for synthetic biology approaches in S. pneumoniae and characterized a set of standardized promoters and reporters. We show that our system allows for fast and easy cloning with the BglBrick system and that reliable and robust gene expression after integration into the S. pneumoniae genome is achieved. In addition, the cloning system was extended to allow for direct linker-based assembly of ribosome binding sites, peptide tags, and fusion proteins, and we called this new generally applicable standard "BglFusion". The gene expression platform and the methods described in this study pave the way for employing synthetic biology approaches in S. pneumoniae.

  17. Environmental Occurrence of Madurella mycetomatis, the Major Agent of Human Eumycetoma in Sudan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmed, Abdalla; Adelmann, Daniel; Fahal, Ahmed; Verbrugh, Henri; Belkum, Alex van; Hoog, Sybren de

    2002-01-01

    Madurella mycetomatis is the main causative agent of human eumycetoma, a severe debilitating disease endemic in Sudan. It has been suggested that eumycetoma has a soil-borne or thorn prick-mediated origin. For this reason, efforts were undertaken to culture M. mycetomatis from soil samples (n = 43) and thorn collections (n = 35) derived from areas in which it is endemic. However, ribosomal sequencing data revealed that the black fungi obtained all belonged to other fungal species. In addition, we performed PCR-mediated detection followed by restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis for the identification of M. mycetomatis DNA from the environmental samples as well as biopsies from patients with mycetoma. In the case of the Sudanese soil samples, 17 out of 74 (23%) samples were positive for M. mycetomatis DNA. Among the thorn collections, 1 out of 22 (5%) was positive in the PCR. All PCR RFLP patterns clearly indicated the presence of M. mycetomatis. In contrast, 15 Dutch and English control soil samples were all negative. Clinically and environmentally obtained fungal PCR products share the same PCR RFLP patterns, suggesting identity, at least at the species level. These observations support the hypothesis that eumycetoma is primarily environmentally acquired and suggest that M. mycetomatis needs special conditions for growth, as direct isolation from the environment seems to be impossible. PMID:11880433

  18. Mapping Human-Dominated Landscapes: the Distribution and Yield of Major Crops of the World

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monfreda, C.; Ramankutty, N.; Foley, J. A.

    2005-12-01

    Croplands cover 18 million km2, an area the size of South America, and provide ecosystem goods and services essential to human well-being. Most global land-cover classifications group the diversity of croplands into a single or very few categories, thereby excluding critical information to answer key questions ranging from biodiversity conservation to food security to biogeochemical cycling. Information on land-use practices is even more limited. The relative lack of information about agricultural landscapes results partly from difficulties in using satellite data to identify individual crop types and land-use practices at a global scale. We address limitations common to remote-sensing classifications by distributing national, state, and county level statistics across a recently updated global dataset of cropland cover at 5 minute resolution. The resulting datasets depict the fractional harvested area and yield of twenty distinct crop types: maize, wheat, rice, sorghum, millet, barley, oats, soybeans, sunflower, rapeseed/canola, pulses, groundnuts/peanuts, oil palm, cassava, potatoes, sugar cane, sugar beets, tobacco, coffee, and cotton. These datasets represent the state of agriculture circa the year 2000 and will be made available for applications in ecological analysis, modeling, visualization, and education.

  19. In vitro assessment of human airway toxicity from major aldehydes in automotive emissions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grafstroem, R.C. [Karolinska Inst., Stockholm (Sweden). Inst. of Environmental Medicine

    1997-09-01

    Automotive exhausts can significantly contribute to the levels of reactive aldehydes, including formaldehyde, acetaldehyde and acrolein, in urban air. The use of alcohols as an alternative fuel for gasoline or diesel may further increase these emissions. Since it is unclear if aldehyde inhalation may induce pathological states, including cancer, in human airways, the toxic properties of the above-mentioned aldehydes were studied in cultured target cell types. Each aldehyde modified vital cellular functions in a dose-dependent manner, and invariably inhibited growth and induced abnormal terminal differentiation. Decreases of cellular thiols and increases of intracellular Ca{sup 2+} were observed, and moreover, variable types and amounts of short-lived or persistent genetic damage were induced. The concentrations required for specified levels of a particular type of injury varied up to 10000-fold among the aldehydes. Overall, distinctive patterns of cytopathological activity were observed, which differed both qualitatively and quantitatively among the aldehydes. Finally, aldehydes inhibited DNA repair processes and increased cytotoxicity and mutagenesis in synergy with other known toxicants, indicating that aldehydes may also enhance damage by other constituents in automotive exhausts. In summary, the aldehydes, notably {sup m}u{sup M}-mM formaldehyde, caused pathological effects and induced mechanisms that relate to acute toxicity and cancer development in airway epithelial cells. Since `no-effect` levels may not exist for carcinogenic agents, the overall results support a need for elimination of aldehydes in automotive exhausts. 41 refs

  20. Protocol for Isolation of Primary Human Hepatocytes and Corresponding Major Populations of Non-parenchymal Liver Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kegel, Victoria; Deharde, Daniela; Pfeiffer, Elisa; Zeilinger, Katrin; Seehofer, Daniel; Damm, Georg

    2016-03-30

    Beside parenchymal hepatocytes, the liver consists of non-parenchymal cells (NPC) namely Kupffer cells (KC), liver endothelial cells (LEC) and hepatic Stellate cells (HSC). Two-dimensional (2D) culture of primary human hepatocyte (PHH) is still considered as the "gold standard" for in vitro testing of drug metabolism and hepatotoxicity. It is well-known that the 2D monoculture of PHH suffers from dedifferentiation and loss of function. Recently it was shown that hepatic NPC play a central role in liver (patho-) physiology and the maintenance of PHH functions. Current research focuses on the reconstruction of in vivo tissue architecture by 3D- and co-culture models to overcome the limitations of 2D monocultures. Previously we published a method to isolate human liver cells and investigated the suitability of these cells for their use in cell cultures in Experimental Biology and Medicine(1). Based on the broad interest in this technique the aim of this article was to provide a more detailed protocol for the liver cell isolation process including a video, which will allow an easy reproduction of this technique. Human liver cells were isolated from human liver tissue samples of surgical interventions by a two-step EGTA/collagenase P perfusion technique. PHH were separated from the NPC by an initial centrifugation at 50 x g. Density gradient centrifugation steps were used for removal of dead cells. Individual liver cell populations were isolated from the enriched NPC fraction using specific cell properties and cell sorting procedures. Beside the PHH isolation we were able to separate KC, LEC and HSC for further cultivation. Taken together, the presented protocol allows the isolation of PHH and NPC in high quality and quantity from one donor tissue sample. The access to purified liver cell populations could allow the creation of in vivo like human liver models.

  1. Alliances in Human Biology: The Harvard Committee on Industrial Physiology, 1929-1939.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oakes, Jason

    2015-08-01

    In 1929 the newly-reorganized Rockefeller Foundation funded the work of a cross-disciplinary group at Harvard University called the Committee on Industrial Physiology (CIP). The committee's research and pedagogical work was oriented towards different things for different members of the alliance. The CIP program included a research component in the Harvard Fatigue Laboratory and Elton May's interpretation of the Hawthorne Studies; a pedagogical aspect as part of Wallace Donham's curriculum for Harvard Business School; and Lawrence Henderson's work with the Harvard Pareto Circle, his course Sociology 23, and the Harvard Society of Fellows. The key actors within the CIP alliance shared a concern with training men for elite careers in government service, business leadership, and academic prominence. But the first communications between the CIP and the Rockefeller Foundation did not emphasize training in human biology. Instead, the CIP presented itself as a coordinating body that would be able to organize all the varied work going on at Harvard that did not fit easily into one department, and it was on this basis that the CIP became legible to the President of Harvard, A. Lawrence Lowell, and to Rockefeller's Division of Social Sciences. The members of the CIP alliance used the term human biology for this project of research, training and institutional coordination.

  2. A multi-level biological approach to evaluate impacts of a major municipal effluent in wild St. Lawrence River yellow perch (Perca flavescens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houde, Magali; Giraudo, Maeva; Douville, Mélanie; Bougas, Bérénice; Couture, Patrice; De Silva, Amila O; Spencer, Christine; Lair, Stéphane; Verreault, Jonathan; Bernatchez, Louis; Gagnon, Christian

    2014-11-01

    The development of integrated ecotoxicological approaches is of great interest in the investigation of global concerns such as impacts of municipal wastewater effluents on aquatic ecosystems. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of a major wastewater municipal effluent on fish using a multi-level biological approach, from gene transcription and enzyme activities to histological changes. Yellow perch (Perca flavescens) were selected based on their wide distribution, their commercial and recreational importance, and the availability of a customized microarray. Yellow perch were sampled upstream of a major municipal wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) and 4 km and 10 km downstream from its point of discharge in the St. Lawrence River (Quebec, Canada). Concentrations of perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and metals/trace elements in whole body homogenates were comparable to those from other industrialized regions of the world. Genomic results indicated that the transcription level of 177 genes was significantly different (pHistological examination of the liver indicated no differences between sites. Correlations between PFAS, PBDE, and metal/trace element tissue concentrations and markers of peroxisomal proliferation, oxidative stress, and retinoid metabolism were found at the gene and cellular levels. Present results suggest that relating transcriptomic analyses to phenotypic responses is important to better understand impacts of environmental contamination on wild fish populations.

  3. Transcriptional Profiling of Hypoxic Neural Stem Cells Identifies Calcineurin-NFATc4 Signaling as a Major Regulator of Neural Stem Cell Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Marta; Fernández, Virginia; Monllau, Josep M.; Borrell, Víctor; Lerin, Carles; de la Iglesia, Núria

    2015-01-01

    Summary Neural stem cells (NSCs) reside in a hypoxic microenvironment within the brain. However, the crucial transcription factors (TFs) that regulate NSC biology under physiologic hypoxia are poorly understood. Here we have performed gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) of microarray datasets from hypoxic versus normoxic NSCs with the aim of identifying pathways and TFs that are activated under oxygen concentrations mimicking normal brain tissue microenvironment. Integration of TF target (TFT) and pathway enrichment analysis identified the calcium-regulated TF NFATc4 as a major candidate to regulate hypoxic NSC functions. Nfatc4 expression was coordinately upregulated by top hypoxia-activated TFs, while NFATc4 target genes were enriched in hypoxic NSCs. Loss-of-function analyses further revealed that the calcineurin-NFATc4 signaling axis acts as a major regulator of NSC self-renewal and proliferation in vitro and in vivo by promoting the expression of TFs, including Id2, that contribute to the maintenance of the NSC state. PMID:26235896

  4. Transcriptional Profiling of Hypoxic Neural Stem Cells Identifies Calcineurin-NFATc4 Signaling as a Major Regulator of Neural Stem Cell Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Moreno

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Neural stem cells (NSCs reside in a hypoxic microenvironment within the brain. However, the crucial transcription factors (TFs that regulate NSC biology under physiologic hypoxia are poorly understood. Here we have performed gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA of microarray datasets from hypoxic versus normoxic NSCs with the aim of identifying pathways and TFs that are activated under oxygen concentrations mimicking normal brain tissue microenvironment. Integration of TF target (TFT and pathway enrichment analysis identified the calcium-regulated TF NFATc4 as a major candidate to regulate hypoxic NSC functions. Nfatc4 expression was coordinately upregulated by top hypoxia-activated TFs, while NFATc4 target genes were enriched in hypoxic NSCs. Loss-of-function analyses further revealed that the calcineurin-NFATc4 signaling axis acts as a major regulator of NSC self-renewal and proliferation in vitro and in vivo by promoting the expression of TFs, including Id2, that contribute to the maintenance of the NSC state.

  5. Design of a biologically inspired lower limb exoskeleton for human gait rehabilitation

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-10-01

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

  6. The Mouse Genome Database (MGD): facilitating mouse as a model for human biology and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eppig, Janan T; Blake, Judith A; Bult, Carol J; Kadin, James A; Richardson, Joel E

    2015-01-01

    The Mouse Genome Database (MGD, http://www.informatics.jax.org) serves the international biomedical research community as the central resource for integrated genomic, genetic and biological data on the laboratory mouse. To facilitate use of mouse as a model in translational studies, MGD maintains a core of high-quality curated data and integrates experimentally and computationally generated data sets. MGD maintains a unified catalog of genes and genome features, including functional RNAs, QTL and phenotypic loci. MGD curates and provides functional and phenotype annotations for mouse genes using the Gene Ontology and Mammalian Phenotype Ontology. MGD integrates phenotype data and associates mouse genotypes to human diseases, providing critical mouse-human relationships and access to repositories holding mouse models. MGD is the authoritative source of nomenclature for genes, genome features, alleles and strains following guidelines of the International Committee on Standardized Genetic Nomenclature for Mice. A new addition to MGD, the Human-Mouse: Disease Connection, allows users to explore gene-phenotype-disease relationships between human and mouse. MGD has also updated search paradigms for phenotypic allele attributes, incorporated incidental mutation data, added a module for display and exploration of genes and microRNA interactions and adopted the JBrowse genome browser. MGD resources are freely available to the scientific community. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  7. Prediction of biological functions on glycosylation site migrations in human influenza H1N1 viruses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Shisheng; Wang, Qinzhe; Zhao, Fei; Chen, Wentian; Li, Zheng

    2012-01-01

    Protein glycosylation alteration is typically employed by various viruses for escaping immune pressures from their hosts. Our previous work had shown that not only the increase of glycosylation sites (glycosites) numbers, but also glycosite migration might be involved in the evolution of human seasonal influenza H1N1 viruses. More importantly, glycosite migration was likely a more effectively alteration way for the host adaption of human influenza H1N1 viruses. In this study, we provided more bioinformatics and statistic evidences for further predicting the significant biological functions of glycosite migration in the host adaptation of human influenza H1N1 viruses, by employing homology modeling and in silico protein glycosylation of representative HA and NA proteins as well as amino acid variability analysis at antigenic sites of HA and NA. The results showed that glycosite migrations in human influenza viruses have at least five possible functions: to more effectively mask the antigenic sites, to more effectively protect the enzymatic cleavage sites of neuraminidase (NA), to stabilize the polymeric structures, to regulate the receptor binding and catalytic activities and to balance the binding activity of hemagglutinin (HA) with the release activity of NA. The information here can provide some constructive suggestions for the function research related to protein glycosylation of influenza viruses, although these predictions still need to be supported by experimental data.

  8. Mouse Tumor Biology (MTB): a database of mouse models for human cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bult, Carol J; Krupke, Debra M; Begley, Dale A; Richardson, Joel E; Neuhauser, Steven B; Sundberg, John P; Eppig, Janan T

    2015-01-01

    The Mouse Tumor Biology (MTB; http://tumor.informatics.jax.org) database is a unique online compendium of mouse models for human cancer. MTB provides online access to expertly curated information on diverse mouse models for human cancer and interfaces for searching and visualizing data associated with these models. The information in MTB is designed to facilitate the selection of strains for cancer research and is a platform for mining data on tumor development and patterns of metastases. MTB curators acquire data through manual curation of peer-reviewed scientific literature and from direct submissions by researchers. Data in MTB are also obtained from other bioinformatics resources including PathBase, the Gene Expression Omnibus and ArrayExpress. Recent enhancements to MTB improve the association between mouse models and human genes commonly mutated in a variety of cancers as identified in large-scale cancer genomics studies, provide new interfaces for exploring regions of the mouse genome associated with cancer phenotypes and incorporate data and information related to Patient-Derived Xenograft models of human cancers.

  9. Is drinking water a major route of human exposure to alkylphenol and bisphenol contaminants in France?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colin, Adeline; Bach, Cristina; Rosin, Christophe; Munoz, Jean-François; Dauchy, Xavier

    2014-01-01

    The main objective of this study was to evaluate potential exposure of a significant part of the French population to alkylphenol and bisphenol contaminants due to water consumption. The occurrence of 11 alkylphenols and bisphenols was studied in raw water and treated water samples from public water systems. One sampling campaign was performed from October 2011 to May 2012. Sampling was equally distributed across 100 French departments. In total, 291 raw water samples and 291 treated water samples were analyzed in this study, representing approximately 20 % of the national water supply flow. The occurrence of the target compounds was also determined for 29 brands of bottled water (polyethylene terephthalate [PET] bottles, polycarbonate [PC] reusable containers, and aluminum cans [ACs]) and in 5 drinking water networks where epoxy resin has been used as coating for pipes. In raw water samples, the highest individual concentration was 1,430 ng/L for bisphenol A (BPA). Of the investigated compounds, nonylphenol (NP), nonylphenol 1-carboxylic acid (NP1EC), BPA, and nonylphenol 2-ethoxylate (NP2EO) predominated (detected in 18.6, 18.6, 14.4, and 10 % of samples, respectively). Geographical variability was observed with departments crossed by major rivers or with high population densities being more affected by contamination. In treated water samples, the highest individual concentration was 505 ng/L for NP. Compared with raw water, target compounds were found in lower amounts in treated water. This difference suggests a relative effectiveness of certain water treatments for the elimination of these pollutants; however, there is also their possible transformation by reaction with chlorine. No target compounds were found in drinking water pipes coated with epoxy resin, in PET bottled water, or in water from ACs. However, levels of BPA in PC bottled water ranged from 70 to 4,210 ng/L with greater level observed in newly manufactured bottles. 4-Tert-butylphenol was

  10. Biological properties of dehydrated human amnion/chorion composite graft: implications for chronic wound healing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koob, Thomas J; Rennert, Robert; Zabek, Nicole; Massee, Michelle; Lim, Jeremy J; Temenoff, Johnna S; Li, William W; Gurtner, Geoffrey

    2013-10-01

    Human amnion/chorion tissue derived from the placenta is rich in cytokines and growth factors known to promote wound healing; however, preservation of the biological activities of therapeutic allografts during processing remains a challenge. In this study, PURION® (MiMedx, Marietta, GA) processed dehydrated human amnion/chorion tissue allografts (dHACM, EpiFix®, MiMedx) were evaluated for the presence of growth factors, interleukins (ILs) and tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases (TIMPs). Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA) were performed on samples of dHACM and showed quantifiable levels of the following growth factors: platelet-derived growth factor-AA (PDGF-AA), PDGF-BB, transforming growth factor α (TGFα), TGFβ1, basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), epidermal growth factor (EGF), placental growth factor (PLGF) and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (GCSF). The ELISA assays also confirmed the presence of IL-4, 6, 8 and 10, and TIMP 1, 2 and 4. Moreover, the relative elution of growth factors into saline from the allograft ranged from 4% to 62%, indicating that there are bound and unbound fractions of these compounds within the allograft. dHACM retained biological activities that cause human dermal fibroblast proliferation and migration of human mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in vitro. An in vivo mouse model showed that dHACM when tested in a skin flap model caused mesenchymal progenitor cell recruitment to the site of implantation. The results from both the in vitro and in vivo experiments clearly established that dHACM contains one or more soluble factors capable of stimulating MSC migration and recruitment. In summary, PURION® processed dHACM retains its biological activities related to wound healing, including the potential to positively affect four distinct and pivotal physiological processes intimately involved in wound healing: cell proliferation, inflammation, metalloproteinase activity and recruitment of progenitor cells. This suggests

  11. RNA of Enterococcus faecalis Strain EC-12 Is a Major Component Inducing Interleukin-12 Production from Human Monocytic Cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryoichiro Nishibayashi

    Full Text Available Interleukin-12 (IL-12 is an important cytokine for the immunomodulatory effects of lactic acid bacteria (LAB. Using murine immune cells, we previously reported that the RNA of Enterococcus faecalis EC-12, a LAB strain exerting probiotic-like beneficial effects, is the major IL-12-inducing immunogenic component. However, it was recently revealed that bacterial RNA can be a ligand for Toll-like receptor (TLR 13, which is only expressed in mice. Because TLR13 is not expressed in humans, the immuno-stimulatory and -modulatory effects of LAB RNA in human cells should be augmented excluding TLR13 contribution. In experiment 1 of this study, the role of LAB RNA in IL-12 induction in human immune cells was studied using three LAB strains, E.faecalis EC-12, Lactobacillus gasseri JCM5344, and Bifidobacterium breve JCM1192. RNase A treatment of heat-killed LAB significantly decreased the IL-12 production of human peripheral blood mononuclear cells on stimulation, while RNase III treatment revealed virtually no effects. Further, IL-12 production against heat-killed E. faecalis EC-12 was abolished by depleting monocytes. These results demonstrated that single stranded RNA (ssRNA of LAB is a strong inducer of IL-12 production from human monocytes. In experiment 2, major receptor for ssRNA of E. faecalis EC-12 was identified using THP-1 cells, a human monocytic cell line. The type of RNA molecules of E. faecalis EC-12 responsible for IL-12 induction was also identified. IL-12 production induced by the total RNA of E. faecalis EC-12 was significantly reduced by the treatment of siRNA for TLR8 but not for TLR7. Furthermore, both 23S and 16S rRNA, but not mRNA, of E. faecalis EC-12 markedly induced IL-12 production from THP-1 cells. These results suggested that the recognition of ssRNA of E. faecalis EC-12 was mediated by TLR8 and that rRNA was the RNA molecule that exhibited IL-12-inducing ability in human cells.

  12. Human eosinophil major basic protein is an endogenous allosteric antagonist at the inhibitory muscarinic M2 receptor.

    OpenAIRE

    Jacoby, D B; Gleich, G J; Fryer, A. D.

    1993-01-01

    The effect of human eosinophil major basic protein (MBP) as well as other eosinophil proteins, on binding of [3H]N-methyl-scopolamine ([3H]NMS: 1 x 10(-10) M) to muscarinic M2 receptors in heart membranes and M3 receptors in submandibular gland membranes was studied. MBP inhibited specific binding of [3H]NMS to M2 receptors but not to M3 receptors. MBP also inhibited atropine-induced dissociation of [3H]NMS-receptor complexes in a dose-dependent fashion, demonstrating that the interaction of ...

  13. Differential effects of methoxy group on the interaction of curcuminoids with two major ligand binding sites of human serum albumin.

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    Hiroki Sato

    Full Text Available Curcuminoids are a group of compounds with a similar chemical backbone structure but containing different numbers of methoxy groups that have therapeutic potential due to their anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. They mainly bind to albumin in plasma. These findings influence their body disposition and biological activities. Spectroscopic analysis using site specific probes on human serum albumin (HSA clearly indicated that curcumin (Cur, demethylcurcumin (Dmc and bisdemethoxycurcumin (Bdmc bind to both Site I (sub-site Ia and Ib and Site II on HSA. At pH 7.4, the binding constants for Site I were relatively comparable between curcuminoids, while the binding constants for Site II at pH 7.4 were increased in order Cur < Dmc < Bdmc. Binding experiments using HSA mutants showed that Trp214 and Arg218 at Site I, and Tyr411 and Arg410 at Site II are involved in the binding of curcuminoids. The molecular docking of all curcuminoids to the Site I pocket showed that curcuminoids stacked with Phe211 and Trp214, and interacted with hydrophobic and aromatic amino acid residues. In contrast, each curcuminoid interacted with Site II in a different manner depending whether a methoxy group was present or absent. A detailed analysis of curcuminoids-albumin interactions would provide valuable information in terms of understanding the pharmacokinetics and the biological activities of this class of compounds.

  14. Biological Activity of Sour Cherry Fruit on the Bacterial Flora of Human Saliva in vitro

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    Anna Blázovics

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This study is the first report on the antibacterial effect of Hungarian sour cherry cultivars. Biological activity of sour cherry juices prepared from fruits Érdi jubileum, Érdi bőtermő, Maliga emléke and Kántorjánosi 3 harvested at different maturity stages was investigated on bacteria present in human saliva. The influence of sour cherry on a mixed bacterial flora of human saliva of 10 volunteers was determined by different experimental approaches. Bactericidal effects were evaluated by minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC using agar diffusion methods and by minimum bactericidal dilution (MBD assays counting the number of surviving bacterial cells in the diluted juices. Time-dependent antibacterial effects were also determined by monitoring the decrease in bacterial cell numbers after the treatment with undiluted juices. The investigated sour cherry juices displayed an impressive bactericidal effect against human saliva bacteria (10–100× reduction of cell numbers within a short time frame (10–40 min. Érdi jubileum was more effective (100 000× reduction of cell number after 270 min than the other studied cultivars. Bactericidal effect was influenced by ripening of samples of Érdi jubileum obtained at different harvesting dates. Biologically active components were effective against a large spectrum of opportunistic bacterial pathogens such as Pseudomonas, Klebsiella, Pantoea spp. and Escherichia coli, including the antibiotic-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa but they were ineffective against beneficial probiotic Lactobacillus spp. Results confirmed the antibacterial potential of all the investigated sour cherry fruits, therefore the consumption of the fruit or its juice for positive influence on oral hygiene is highly recommended.

  15. Towards human-computer synergetic analysis of large-scale biological data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Rahul; Yang, Hui; Dalziel, Ben; Asarnow, Daniel; Murad, William; Foote, David; Gormley, Matthew; Stillman, Jonathan; Fisher, Susan

    2013-01-01

    Advances in technology have led to the generation of massive amounts of complex and multifarious biological data in areas ranging from genomics to structural biology. The volume and complexity of such data leads to significant challenges in terms of its analysis, especially when one seeks to generate hypotheses or explore the underlying biological processes. At the state-of-the-art, the application of automated algorithms followed by perusal and analysis of the results by an expert continues to be the predominant paradigm for analyzing biological data. This paradigm works well in many problem domains. However, it also is limiting, since domain experts are forced to apply their instincts and expertise such as contextual reasoning, hypothesis formulation, and exploratory analysis after the algorithm has produced its results. In many areas where the organization and interaction of the biological processes is poorly understood and exploratory analysis is crucial, what is needed is to integrate domain expertise during the data analysis process and use it to drive the analysis itself. In context of the aforementioned background, the results presented in this paper describe advancements along two methodological directions. First, given the context of biological data, we utilize and extend a design approach called experiential computing from multimedia information system design. This paradigm combines information visualization and human-computer interaction with algorithms for exploratory analysis of large-scale and complex data. In the proposed approach, emphasis is laid on: (1) allowing users to directly visualize, interact, experience, and explore the data through interoperable visualization-based and algorithmic components, (2) supporting unified query and presentation spaces to facilitate experimentation and exploration, (3) providing external contextual information by assimilating relevant supplementary data, and (4) encouraging user-directed information

  16. Differential Impact of LPG-and PG-Deficient Leishmania major Mutants on the Immune Response of Human Dendritic Cells.

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    Michelle A Favila

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Leishmania major infection induces robust interleukin-12 (IL12 production in human dendritic cells (hDC, ultimately resulting in Th1-mediated immunity and clinical resolution. The surface of Leishmania parasites is covered in a dense glycocalyx consisting of primarily lipophosphoglycan (LPG and other phosphoglycan-containing molecules (PGs, making these glycoconjugates the likely pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPS responsible for IL12 induction.Here we explored the role of parasite glycoconjugates on the hDC IL12 response by generating L. major Friedlin V1 mutants defective in LPG alone, (FV1 lpg1-, or generally deficient for all PGs, (FV1 lpg2-. Infection with metacyclic, infective stage, L. major or purified LPG induced high levels of IL12B subunit gene transcripts in hDCs, which was abrogated with FV1 lpg1- infections. In contrast, hDC infections with FV1 lpg2- displayed increased IL12B expression, suggesting other PG-related/LPG2 dependent molecules may act to dampen the immune response. Global transcriptional profiling comparing WT, FV1 lpg1-, FV1 lpg2- infections revealed that FV1 lpg1- mutants entered hDCs in a silent fashion as indicated by repression of gene expression. Transcription factor binding site analysis suggests that LPG recognition by hDCs induces IL-12 in a signaling cascade resulting in Nuclear Factor κ B (NFκB and Interferon Regulatory Factor (IRF mediated transcription.These data suggest that L. major LPG is a major PAMP recognized by hDC to induce IL12-mediated protective immunity and that there is a complex interplay between PG-baring Leishmania surface glycoconjugates that result in modulation of host cellular IL12.

  17. Foodstuff analyses show that seafood and water are major perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) sources to humans in Korea

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Heo, Jin-Ju; Lee, Ji-Woo [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Pusan National University, Busan, 609-735 (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Seung-Kyu [Department of Marine Science, College of Natural Sciences, Incheon National University, Incheon, 406-772 (Korea, Republic of); Oh, Jeong-Eun, E-mail: jeoh@pusan.ac.kr [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Pusan National University, Busan, 609-735 (Korea, Republic of)

    2014-08-30

    Graphical abstract: - Highlights: • 16 PFAAs in 397 samples of 66 food types and 34 tap water samples were analyzed. • Dietary exposure to PFAAs was estimated by using the PFAAs measured concentrations. • The major contributors of PFAAs dietary exposure were confirmed. - Abstract: We measured concentrations of PFAAs in 397 foods, of 66 types, in Korea, and determined the daily human dietary PFAAs intake and the contribution of each foodstuff to that intake. The PFAAs concentration in the 66 different food types ranged from below the detection limit to 48.3 ng/g. Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and long-chain perfluorocarboxylic acids (PFCAs) were the dominant PFAAs in fish, shellfish, and processed foods, while perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and short-chain PFCAs dominated dairy foodstuffs and beverages. The Korean adult dietary intake ranges, estimated for a range of scenarios, were 0.60–3.03 and 0.17–1.68 ng kg{sup −1} bw d{sup −1} for PFOS and PFOA, respectively, which were lower than the total daily intake limits suggested by European Food Safety Authority (PFOS: 150 ng kg{sup −1} bw d{sup −1}; PFOA: 1500 ng kg{sup −1} bw d{sup −1}). The major contributors to PFAAs dietary exposure varied with subject age and PFAAs. For example, fish was a major contributor of PFOS but dairy foods were major contributors of PFOA. However, tap water was a major contributor to PFOA intake when it was the main source of drinking water (rather than bottled water)

  18. Granulocyte macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF biological actions on human dermal fibroblasts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S Montagnani

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Fibroblasts are involved in all pathologies characterized by increased ExtraCellularMatrix synthesis, from wound healing to fibrosis. Granulocyte Macrophage-Colony Stimulating Factor (GM-CSF is a cytokine isolated as an hemopoietic growth factor but recently indicated as a differentiative agent on endothelial cells. In this work we demonstrated the expression of the receptor for GM-CSF (GMCSFR on human normal skin fibroblasts from healthy subjects (NFPC and on a human normal fibroblast cell line (NHDF and we try to investigate the biological effects of this cytokine. Human normal fibroblasts were cultured with different doses of GM-CSF to study the effects of this factor on GMCSFR expression, on cell proliferation and adhesion structures. In addition we studied the production of some Extra-Cellular Matrix (ECM components such as Fibronectin, Tenascin and Collagen I. The growth rate of fibroblasts from healthy donors (NFPC is not augmented by GM-CSF stimulation in spite of increased expression of the GM-CSFR. On the contrary, the proliferation of normal human dermal fibroblasts (NHDF cell line seems more influenced by high concentration of GM-CSF in the culture medium. The adhesion structures and the ECM components appear variously influenced by GM-CSF treatment as compared to fibroblasts cultured in basal condition, but newly only NHDF cells are really induced to increase their synthesis activity. We suggest that the in vitro treatment with GM-CSF can shift human normal fibroblasts towards a more differentiated state, due or accompanied by an increased expression of GM-CSFR and that such “differentiation” is an important event induced by such cytokine.

  19. In vivo biological response to extracorporeal shockwave therapy in human tendinopathy

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    CM Waugh

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT is a non-invasive treatment for chronic tendinopathies, however little is known about the in-vivo biological mechanisms of ESWT. Using microdialysis, we examined the real-time biological response of healthy and pathological tendons to ESWT. A single session of ESWT was administered to the mid-portion of the Achilles tendon in thirteen healthy individuals (aged 25.7 ± 7.0 years and patellar or Achilles tendon of six patients with tendinopathies (aged 39.0 ± 14.9 years. Dialysate samples from the surrounding peri-tendon were collected before and immediately after ESWT. Interleukins (IL-1β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12p70, IL-17A, vascular endothelial growth factor and interferon-γ were quantified using a cytometric bead array while gelatinase activity (MMP-2 and -9 was examined using zymography. There were no statistical differences between the biological tissue response to ESWT in healthy and pathological tendons. IL-1β, IL-2, IL-6 and IL-8 were the cytokines predominantly detected in the tendon dialysate. IL-1β and IL-2 did not change significantly with ESWT. IL-6 and IL-8 concentrations were elevated immediately after ESWT and remained significantly elevated for four hours post-ESWT (p < 0.001. Pro-forms of MMP-2 and -9 also increased after ESWT (p < 0.003, whereas there were no significant changes in active MMP forms. In addition, the biological response to ESWT treatment could be differentiated between possible responders and non-responders based on a minimum 5-fold increase in any inflammatory marker or MMP from pre- to post-ESWT. Our findings provide novel evidence of the biological mechanisms underpinning ESWT in humans in vivo. They suggest that the mechanical stimulus provided by ESWT might aid tendon remodelling in tendinopathy by promoting the inflammatory and catabolic processes that are associated with removing damaged matrix constituents. The non-response of some individuals may

  20. In vivo biological response to extracorporeal shockwave therapy in human tendinopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waugh, C M; Morrissey, D; Jones, E; Riley, G P; Langberg, H; Screen, H R C

    2015-05-15

    Extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT) is a non-invasive treatment for chronic tendinopathies, however little is known about the in-vivo biological mechanisms of ESWT. Using microdialysis, we examined the real-time biological response of healthy and pathological tendons to ESWT. A single session of ESWT was administered to the mid-portion of the Achilles tendon in thirteen healthy individuals (aged 25.7 ± 7.0 years) and patellar or Achilles tendon of six patients with tendinopathies (aged 39.0 ± 14.9 years). Dialysate samples from the surrounding peri-tendon were collected before and immediately after ESWT. Interleukins (IL)-1β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12p70, IL-17A, vascular endothelial growth factor and interferon-γ were quantified using a cytometric bead array while gelatinase activity (MMP-2 and -9) was examined using zymography. There were no statistical differences between the biological tissue response to ESWT in healthy and pathological tendons. IL-1β, IL-2, IL-6 and IL-8 were the cytokines predominantly detected in the tendon dialysate. IL-1β and IL-2 did not change significantly with ESWT. IL-6 and IL-8 concentrations were elevated immediately after ESWT and remained significantly elevated for four hours post-ESWT (p < 0.001). Pro-forms of MMP-2 and -9 also increased after ESWT (p < 0.003), whereas there were no significant changes in active MMP forms. In addition, the biological response to ESWT treatment could be differentiated between possible responders and non-responders based on a minimum 5-fold increase in any inflammatory marker or MMP from pre- to post-ESWT. Our findings provide novel evidence of the biological mechanisms underpinning ESWT in humans in vivo. They suggest that the mechanical stimulus provided by ESWT might aid tendon remodelling in tendinopathy by promoting the inflammatory and catabolic processes that are associated with removing damaged matrix constituents. The non-response of some individuals may help to

  1. The Biological Effects of Quadripolar Radiofrequency Sequential Application: A Human Experimental Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cornaglia, Antonia Icaro; Faga, Angela; Scevola, Silvia

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Objective: An experimental study was conducted to assess the effectiveness and safety of an innovative quadripolar variable electrode configuration radiofrequency device with objective measurements in an ex vivo and in vivo human experimental model. Background data: Nonablative radiofrequency applications are well-established anti-ageing procedures for cosmetic skin tightening. Methods: The study was performed in two steps: ex vivo and in vivo assessments. In the ex vivo assessments the radiofrequency applications were performed on human full-thickness skin and subcutaneous tissue specimens harvested during surgery for body contouring. In the in vivo assessments the applications were performed on two volunteer patients scheduled for body contouring surgery at the end of the study. The assessment methods were: clinical examination and medical photography, temperature measurement with thermal imaging scan, and light microscopy histological examination. Results: The ex vivo assessments allowed for identification of the effective safety range for human application. The in vivo assessments allowed for demonstration of the biological effects of sequential radiofrequency applications. After a course of radiofrequency applications, the collagen fibers underwent an immediate heat-induced rearrangement and were partially denaturated and progressively metabolized by the macrophages. An overall thickening and spatial rearrangement was appreciated both in the collagen and elastic fibers, the latter displaying a juvenile reticular pattern. A late onset in the macrophage activation after sequential radiofrequency applications was appreciated. Conclusions: Our data confirm the effectiveness of sequential radiofrequency applications in obtaining attenuation of the skin wrinkles by an overall skin tightening. PMID:25244081

  2. Systems biology from micro-organisms to human metabolic diseases: the role of detailed kinetic models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakker, Barbara M; van Eunen, Karen; Jeneson, Jeroen A L; van Riel, Natal A W; Bruggeman, Frank J; Teusink, Bas

    2010-10-01

    Human metabolic diseases are typically network diseases. This holds not only for multifactorial diseases, such as metabolic syndrome or Type 2 diabetes, but even when a single gene defect is the primary cause, where the adaptive response of the entire network determines the severity of disease. The latter may differ between individuals carrying the same mutation. Understanding the adaptive responses of human metabolism naturally requires a systems biology approach. Modelling of metabolic pathways in micro-organisms and some mammalian tissues has yielded many insights, qualitative as well as quantitative, into their control and regulation. Yet, even for a well-known pathway such as glycolysis, precise predictions of metabolite dynamics from experimentally determined enzyme kinetics have been only moderately successful. In the present review, we compare kinetic models of glycolysis in three cell types (African trypanosomes, yeast and skeletal muscle), evaluate their predictive power and identify limitations in our understanding. Although each of these models has its own merits and shortcomings, they also share common features. For example, in each case independently measured enzyme kinetic parameters were used as input. Based on these 'lessons from glycolysis', we will discuss how to make best use of kinetic computer models to advance our understanding of human metabolic diseases.

  3. Generation of biologically active multi-sialylated recombinant human EPOFc in plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra Castilho

    Full Text Available Hyperglycosylated proteins are more stable, show increased serum half-life and less sensitivity to proteolysis compared to non-sialylated forms. This applies particularly to recombinant human erythropoietin (rhEPO. Recent progress in N-glycoengineering of non-mammalian expression hosts resulted in in vivo protein sialylation at great homogeneity. However the synthesis of multi-sialylated N-glycans is so far restricted to mammalian cells. Here we used a plant based expression system to accomplish multi-antennary protein sialylation. A human erythropoietin fusion protein (EPOFc was transiently expressed in Nicotiana benthamiana ΔXTFT, a glycosylation mutant that lacks plant specific N-glycan residues. cDNA of the hormone was co-delivered into plants with the necessary genes for (i branching (ii β1,4-galactosylation as well as for the (iii synthesis, transport and transfer of sialic acid. This resulted in the production of recombinant EPOFc carrying bi- tri- and tetra-sialylated complex N-glycans. The formation of this highly complex oligosaccharide structure required the coordinated expression of 11 human proteins acting in different subcellular compartments at different stages of the glycosylation pathway. In vitro receptor binding assays demonstrate the generation of biologically active molecules. We demonstrate the in planta synthesis of one of the most complex mammalian glycoforms pointing to an outstanding high degree of tolerance to changes in the glycosylation pathway in plants.

  4. From frog integument to human skin: dermatological perspectives from frog skin biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haslam, Iain S; Roubos, Eric W; Mangoni, Maria Luisa; Yoshizato, Katsutoshi; Vaudry, Hubert; Kloepper, Jennifer E; Pattwell, David M; Maderson, Paul F A; Paus, Ralf

    2014-08-01

    For over a century, frogs have been studied across various scientific fields, including physiology, embryology, neuroscience, (neuro)endocrinology, ecology, genetics, behavioural science, evolution, drug development, and conservation biology. In some cases, frog skin has proven very successful as a research model, for example aiding in the study of ion transport through tight epithelia, where it has served as a model for the vertebrate distal renal tubule and mammalian epithelia. However, it has rarely been considered in comparative studies involving human skin. Yet, despite certain notable adaptations that have enabled frogs to survive in both aquatic and terrestrial environments, frog skin has many features in common with human skin. Here we present a comprehensive overview of frog (and toad) skin ontogeny, anatomy, cytology, neuroendocrinology and immunology, with special attention to its unique adaptations as well as to its similarities with the mammalian integument, including human skin. We hope to provide a valuable reference point and a source of inspiration for both amphibian investigators and mammalian researchers studying the structural and functional properties of the largest organ of the vertebrate body.

  5. Complementary methodologies to investigate human gut microbiota in host health, working towards integrative systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Méndez-García, Celia; Barbas, Coral; Ferrer, Manuel; Rojo, David

    2017-09-05

    In 1680, Antonie van Leewenhoek noted compositional differences in his oral and fecal microbiota, pioneering the study of the diversity of the human microbiome. From Leewenhoek to modern successful attempts of changing the gut microbiota landscape to cure disease, there has been an exponential increase in the recognition of our resident microbes as part of ourselves. Thus, the human host and microbiome have evolved in parallel to configure a balanced system in which microbes survive in homeostasis with our innate and acquired immune system, unless disease occurs. A growing number of studies have demonstrated a correlation between the presence/absence of microbial taxa, and some of their functional molecules (i.e. genes, proteins, and metabolites), with health and disease states. Nevertheless, misleading experimental design on human subjects, and the cost and lack of standardized animal models pose challenges to answering the question of whether changes in the microbiome composition are cause or consequence of a certain biological state. In this review, we evaluate the state of the art of methodologies that enable the study of the gut microbiome, encouraging a change in broadly used analytic strategies by choosing effector molecules (proteins, metabolites) in combination with coding nucleic acids. We further explore microbial and effector microbial products imbalances that relate to disease and health. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  6. Comparison of major antigenic proteins of six strains of the human granulocytic ehrlichiosis agent by Western immunoblot analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhi, N; Rikihisa, Y; Kim, H Y; Wormser, G P; Horowitz, H W

    1997-10-01

    The etiologic agent of human granulocytic ehrlichiosis (HGE) is an obligate intracellular bacterium. In 1996, blood specimens from 53 patients suspected of having HGE were examined by indirect fluorescent antibody (IFA) testing with the HGE agent no. 13 isolate as the antigen, by nested PCR, and by culture. All patients resided in Westchester County, N.Y. Twelve patient specimens were positive for IFA (titer > or = 1:40). Seven of these were also positive by PCR. Of the seven specimens positive by both IFA testing and PCR, the HGE agent was isolated from four (no. 2, 3, 6, and 11) and continuously cultured in HL-60 cells. These were confirmed as the HGE agent by sequencing of 16S rDNA. Both purified whole-cell organisms and the outer membrane fractions of the new isolates were compared with no. 13 isolate and a tick (USG) isolate by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) and Western immunoblot analysis. No. 11 and 13 isolates had identical SDS-PAGE patterns with respect to 49- and 47-kDa proteins. No. 3 and USG isolates lacked the 47-kDa protein, and no. 6 isolate lacked the 49-kDa protein. Both 49- and 47-kDa bands were absent in no. 2 isolate. Western blot results with seven different sera, including five convalescent-phase sera from these patients, one dog anti-USG isolate, and one horse anti-BDS isolate, showed that all major antigens in six isolates were recognized by all sera. However, the molecular sizes and the numbers of major antigens recognized varied among the six isolates. Overall, HGE agent no. 3, 6, 11, and 13, and USG isolates had similar patterns, with 1 or 2 major antigens with molecular masses of around 49 and 47 kDa. No. 2 isolate was quite distinct in having a major antigen of 43 kDa. This indicates that although these antigenic epitopes are all cross-reactive among strains, the HGE agent has a strain pleomorphism in its major antigenic proteins. The major antigen profiles of the outer membrane protein fractions

  7. Methodology for and the determination of the major constituents and metabolites of the Amazonian botanical medicine ayahuasca in human urine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McIlhenny, Ethan H; Riba, Jordi; Barbanoj, Manel J; Strassman, Rick; Barker, Steven A

    2011-09-01

    Ayahuasca, also known as caapi or yage among various South American groups, holds a highly esteemed and millennia-old position in these cultures' medical and religious pharmacopeia. There is now an increasing interest in the potential for modern medical applications of ayahuasca, as well as concerns regarding its increasing potential for abuse. Toxicological and clinical research to address these issues will require information regarding its metabolism and clearance. Thus, a rapid, sensitive and specific method for characterization and quantitation of the major constituents and of the metabolites of ayahuasca in urine is needed. The present research provides a protocol for conducting such analyses. The characteristics of the method, conducted by sample dilution and using HPLC-electrospray ionization (ESI)-selected reaction monitoring (SRM)-tandem mass spectrometry, are presented. The application of the analytical protocol to urine samples collected from three individuals that were administered ayahuasca has also been demonstrated. The data show that the major metabolite of the hallucinogenic component of ayahuasca, N,N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT), is the corresponding N-oxide, the first time this metabolite has been described in in vivo studies in humans. Further, very little DMT was detected in urine, despite the inhibition of monoamine oxidase afforded by the presence of the harmala alkaloids in ayahuasca. The major harmala alkaloid excreted was tetrahydroharmine. Other excretion products and metabolites were also identified and quantified. The method described would be suitable for use in further toxicological and clinical research on ayahuasca. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  8. Interaction between human complement and a pectin type polysaccharide fraction, PMII, from the leaves of Plantago major L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaelsen, T E; Gilje, A; Samuelsen, A B; Høgåsen, K; Paulsen, B S

    2000-11-01

    The interaction between a pectin type polysaccharide fraction, PMII, isolated from the leaves of Plantago major, and human complement was tested in two different hemolytic complement-fixation tests and in addition by two ELISA methods detecting complement-activation products. Sera were used as a complement source of 10 arbitrary human volunteers, individually and as a pool. The complement-fixation tests were designed to measure the concentration of the pectin necessary to inhibit 50% of the hemolysis (ICH(50)). The ELISA tests for complement-activation products were measured in AU/mg using a fully activated serum as a standard. We observed a more than 200-fold difference in ICH(50) activity of the PMII pectin in one of the hemolytic tests by varying the individual sera used as complement-source. On the other hand, the ELISA complement-activation tests showed no significant variation in activity of the PMII depending on the complement-serum used. The level of antibodies against PMII detected in the complement-sera did not correlate with the ICH(50) activity of PMII. The results show that PMII is a potent complement activator with an activity of the same order of magnitude on a weight basis as that of aggregated human immunoglobulin (Ig)G. This activation leads to a complement consumption probably explaining the PMII's effect in the complement-fixation tests. PMII seems to be an activator both on the classical and the alternative pathway of activation. The results might be related to the reported wound-healing effect of the leaves of Plantago major.

  9. Slaughterhouse pigs are a major reservoir of Streptococcus suis serotype 2 capable of causing human infection in southern Vietnam.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thi Hoa Ngo

    Full Text Available Streptococcus suis is a pathogen of major economic significance to the swine industry and is increasingly recognized as an emerging zoonotic agent in Asia. In Vietnam, S. suis is the leading cause of bacterial meningitis in adult humans. Zoonotic transmission is most frequently associated with serotype 2 strains and occupational exposure to pigs or consumption of infected pork. To gain insight into the role of pigs for human consumption as a reservoir for zoonotic infection in southern Vietnam, we determined the prevalence and diversity of S. suis carriage in healthy slaughterhouse pigs. Nasopharyngeal tonsils were sampled from pigs at slaughterhouses serving six provinces in southern Vietnam and Ho Chi Minh City area from September 2006 to November 2007. Samples were screened by bacterial culture. Isolates of S. suis were serotyped and characterized by multi locus sequence typing (MLST and pulse field gel electrophoresis (PFGE. Antibiotic susceptibility profiles and associated genetic resistance determinants, and the presence of putative virulence factors were determined. 41% (222/542 of pigs carried S. suis of one or multiple serotypes. 8% (45/542 carried S. suis serotype 2 which was the most common serotype found (45/317 strains, 14%. 80% of serotype 2 strains belonged to the MLST clonal complex 1,which was previously associated with meningitis cases in Vietnam and outbreaks of severe disease in China in 1998 and 2005. These strains clustered with representative strains isolated from patients with meningitis in PFGE analysis, and showed similar antimicrobial resistance and virulence factor profiles. Slaughterhouse pigs are a major reservoir of S. suis serotype 2 capable of causing human infection in southern Vietnam. Strict hygiene at processing facilities, and health education programs addressing food safety and proper handling of pork should be encouraged.

  10. Biological effects on human health due to radiofrequency/microwave exposure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Breckenkamp, Jürgen; Berg, Gabriele; Blettner, Maria

    2003-01-01

    electromagnetic pulses similar to those after a nuclear explosion. In all studies (except one that used a qualitative job-exposure-matrix) either the duration of occupational work as an approximation to actual exposure was determined or a simple yes/no differentiation was used based on a definition of high......We evaluated the methods and results of nine cohort studies dealing with the biological effects on human health from exposure to radiofrequencies/microwaves, published between 1980 and 2002. The size of the cohorts varied between 304 (3,362 person years) and nearly 200,000 persons (2.7 million...... person years). As exposures were defined: dielectric heaters in a plastic manufacturing plant, working with radio devices (professional and amateur), production of wireless communication technologies, radar devices of the Canadian police, radar units used by the military as well as artificially produced...

  11. Postmarketing safety reports for human drug and biological products; electronic submission requirements. Final rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-06-10

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or we) is amending its postmarketing safety reporting regulations for human drug and biological products to require that persons subject to mandatory reporting requirements submit safety reports in an electronic format that FDA can process, review, and archive. FDA is taking this action to improve the Agency's systems for collecting and analyzing postmarketing safety reports. The change will help the Agency to more rapidly review postmarketing safety reports, identify emerging safety problems, and disseminate safety information in support of FDA's public health mission. In addition, the amendments will be a key element in harmonizing FDA's postmarketing safety reporting regulations with international standards for the electronic submission of safety information.

  12. Design, synthesis and biological evaluation of novel aminothiazoles as antiviral compounds acting against human rhinovirus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Décor, Anne; Grand-Maître, Chantal; Hucke, Oliver; O'Meara, Jeff; Kuhn, Cyrille; Constantineau-Forget, Léa; Brochu, Christian; Malenfant, Eric; Bertrand-Laperle, Mégan; Bordeleau, Josée; Ghiro, Elise; Pesant, Marc; Fazal, Gulrez; Gorys, Vida; Little, Michael; Boucher, Colette; Bordeleau, Sylvain; Turcotte, Pascal; Guo, Tim; Garneau, Michel; Spickler, Catherine; Gauthier, Annick

    2013-07-01

    We describe here the design, synthesis and biological evaluation of antiviral compounds acting against human rhinovirus (HRV). A series of aminothiazoles demonstrated pan-activity against the HRV genotypes screened and productive structure-activity relationships. A comprehensive investigational library was designed and performed allowing the identification of potent compounds with lower molecular weight and improved ADME profile. 31d-1, 31d-2, 31f showed good exposures in CD-1 mice. The mechanism of action was discovered to be a host target: the lipid kinase phosphatidylinositol 4-kinase III beta (PI4KIIIß). The identification of the pan-HRV active compound 31f combined with a structurally distinct literature compound T-00127-HEV1 allowed the assessment of target related tolerability of inhibiting this kinase for a short period of time in order to prevent HRV replication.

  13. Functional and molecular characterization of the role of CTCF in human embryonic stem cell biology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sri Kripa Balakrishnan

    Full Text Available The CCCTC-binding factor CTCF is the only known vertebrate insulator protein and has been shown to regulate important developmental processes such as imprinting, X-chromosome inactivation and genomic architecture. In this study, we examined the role of CTCF in human embryonic stem cell (hESC biology. We demonstrate that CTCF associates with several important pluripotency genes, including NANOG, SOX2, cMYC and LIN28 and is critical for hESC proliferation. CTCF depletion impacts expression of pluripotency genes and accelerates loss of pluripotency upon BMP4 induced differentiation, but does not result in spontaneous differentiation. We find that CTCF associates with the distal ends and internal sites of the co-regulated 160 kb NANOG-DPPA3-GDF3 locus. Each of these sites can function as a CTCF-dependent enhancer-blocking insulator in heterologous assays. In hESCs, CTCF exists in multisubunit protein complexes and can be poly(ADPribosylated. Known CTCF cofactors, such as Cohesin, differentially co-localize in the vicinity of specific CTCF binding sites within the NANOG locus. Importantly, the association of some cofactors and protein PARlation selectively changes upon differentiation although CTCF binding remains constant. Understanding how unique cofactors may impart specialized functions to CTCF at specific genomic locations will further illuminate its role in stem cell biology.

  14. Systems-Biology Approaches to Discover Anti-Viral Effectors of the Human Innate Immune Response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas F.R. Sommer

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Virus infections elicit an immediate innate response involving antiviral factors. The activities of some of these factors are, in turn, blocked by viral countermeasures. The ensuing battle between the host and the viruses is crucial for determining whether the virus establishes a foothold and/or induces adaptive immune responses. A comprehensive systems-level understanding of the repertoire of anti-viral effectors in the context of these immediate virus-host responses would provide significant advantages in devising novel strategies to interfere with the initial establishment of infections. Recent efforts to identify cellular factors in a comprehensive and unbiased manner, using genome-wide siRNA screens and other systems biology “omics” methodologies, have revealed several potential anti-viral effectors for viruses like Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1, Hepatitis C virus (HCV, West Nile virus (WNV, and influenza virus. This review describes the discovery of novel viral restriction factors and discusses how the integration of different methods in systems biology can be used to more comprehensively identify the intimate interactions of viruses and the cellular innate resistance.

  15. Penrose-Hameroff orchestrated objective-reduction proposal for human consciousness is not biologically feasible.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKemmish, Laura K; Reimers, Jeffrey R; McKenzie, Ross H; Mark, Alan E; Hush, Noel S

    2009-08-01

    Penrose and Hameroff have argued that the conventional models of a brain function based on neural networks alone cannot account for human consciousness, claiming that quantum-computation elements are also required. Specifically, in their Orchestrated Objective Reduction (Orch OR) model [R. Penrose and S. R. Hameroff, J. Conscious. Stud. 2, 99 (1995)], it is postulated that microtubules act as quantum processing units, with individual tubulin dimers forming the computational elements. This model requires that the tubulin is able to switch between alternative conformational states in a coherent manner, and that this process be rapid on the physiological time scale. Here, the biological feasibility of the Orch OR proposal is examined in light of recent experimental studies on microtubule assembly and dynamics. It is shown that the tubulins do not possess essential properties required for the Orch OR proposal, as originally proposed, to hold. Further, we consider also recent progress in the understanding of the long-lived coherent motions in biological systems, a feature critical to Orch OR, and show that no reformation of the proposal based on known physical paradigms could lead to quantum computing within microtubules. Hence, the Orch OR model is not a feasible explanation of the origin of consciousness.

  16. Penrose-Hameroff orchestrated objective-reduction proposal for human consciousness is not biologically feasible

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKemmish, Laura K.; Reimers, Jeffrey R.; McKenzie, Ross H.; Mark, Alan E.; Hush, Noel S.

    2009-08-01

    Penrose and Hameroff have argued that the conventional models of a brain function based on neural networks alone cannot account for human consciousness, claiming that quantum-computation elements are also required. Specifically, in their Orchestrated Objective Reduction (Orch OR) model [R. Penrose and S. R. Hameroff, J. Conscious. Stud. 2, 99 (1995)], it is postulated that microtubules act as quantum processing units, with individual tubulin dimers forming the computational elements. This model requires that the tubulin is able to switch between alternative conformational states in a coherent manner, and that this process be rapid on the physiological time scale. Here, the biological feasibility of the Orch OR proposal is examined in light of recent experimental studies on microtubule assembly and dynamics. It is shown that the tubulins do not possess essential properties required for the Orch OR proposal, as originally proposed, to hold. Further, we consider also recent progress in the understanding of the long-lived coherent motions in biological systems, a feature critical to Orch OR, and show that no reformation of the proposal based on known physical paradigms could lead to quantum computing within microtubules. Hence, the Orch OR model is not a feasible explanation of the origin of consciousness.

  17. Biological dosimetry: the potential use of radiation-induced apoptosis in human T-lymphocytes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Menz, R.; Andres, R.; Larsson, B.; Ozsahin, M.; Crompton, N.E.A. [Department of Life Sciences, Paul Scherrer Institute, CH-5232 Villigen-PSI (Switzerland); Trott, K. [St. Bartholemew`s and the Royal London School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of London (United Kingdom)

    1997-09-01

    An assay for biological dosimetry based on the induction of apoptosis in human T-lymphocytes is described. Radiation-induced apoptosis was assessed by flow cytometric identification of cells displaying apoptosis-associated DNA condensation. CD4 and CD8 T-lymphocytes were analysed. They were recognized on the basis of their cell-surface antigens. Four parameters were measured for both cell types: cell size, granularity, antigen immunofluorescence and DNA content. Apoptosis was quantified as the fraction of CD4-, or CD8-positive cells with a characteristic reduction of cell size and DNA content. At doses below 1 Gy, levels of radiation-induced apoptosis increased for up to 5 days after irradiation. Optimal dose discrimination was observed 4 days after irradiation, at which time the dose-response curves were linear, with a slope of 8% {+-} 0.5% per 0.1 Gy. In controlled, dose-response experiments the lowest dose level at which the radiation-induced apoptosis frequency was still significantly above control was 0.05 Gy. After 5 days post-irradiation incubation, intra- and interdonor variations were measured and found to be similar; thus, apoptotic levels depend more on the dose than on the donor. The results demonstrate the potential of this assay as a biological dosimeter. (orig.) With 5 figs., 2 tabs., 19 refs.

  18. [Human papillomavirus infection, a possible biological marker of sexual behavior among university students].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Alemán, Miguel A; Uribe-Salas, Felipe; Conde-González, Carlos J

    2002-01-01

    To estimate the prevalence of Human papillomavirus (HPV) among university students and to use it as a biological marker to assess sexual behavior. A cross-sectional study was carried out between 2000 and 2001 among 194 students at Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Morelos, Mexico. A data collection instrument was applied and genital samples were taken to detect oncogenic HPV DNA. Data were analyzed using the chi-squared test and odds ratios. Overall HPV prevalence was 14.4%. Women who had had two or more sexual partners during the previous year showed a greater risk of HPV infection (OR 6.0, 95% CI 1.7-21.1), as did women who had used oral contraceptives and spermicides at their latest intercourse (OR 3.0, 95% CI 1.0-8.7). Males who consumed cocaine were at a greater risk of HPV infection (OR 7.6, 95% CI 1.3-45.1). HPV prevalence is relatively high. HPV is a reliable biological marker of sexual behavior among females. A greater sample size may be needed to assess its reliability among men.

  19. Serum Albumin Domain Structures in Human Blood Serum by Mass Spectrometry and Computational Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belsom, Adam; Schneider, Michael; Fischer, Lutz; Brock, Oliver; Rappsilber, Juri

    2016-03-01

    Chemical cross-linking combined with mass spectrometry has proven useful for studying protein-protein interactions and protein structure, however the low density of cross-link data has so far precluded its use in determining structures de novo. Cross-linking density has been typically limited by the chemical selectivity of the standard cross-linking reagents that are commonly used for protein cross-linking. We have implemented the use of a heterobifunctional cross-linking reagent, sulfosuccinimidyl 4,4'-azipentanoate (sulfo-SDA), combining a traditional sulfo-N-hydroxysuccinimide (sulfo-NHS) ester and a UV photoactivatable diazirine group. This diazirine yields a highly reactive and promiscuous carbene species, the net result being a greatly increased number of cross-links compared with homobifunctional, NHS-based cross-linkers. We present a novel methodology that combines the use of this high density photo-cross-linking data with conformational space search to investigate the structure of human serum albumin domains, from purified samples, and in its native environment, human blood serum. Our approach is able to determine human serum albumin domain structures with good accuracy: root-mean-square deviation to crystal structure are 2.8/5.6/2.9 Å (purified samples) and 4.5/5.9/4.8Å (serum samples) for domains A/B/C for the first selected structure; 2.5/4.9/2.9 Å (purified samples) and 3.5/5.2/3.8 Å (serum samples) for the best out of top five selected structures. Our proof-of-concept study on human serum albumin demonstrates initial potential of our approach for determining the structures of more proteins in the complex biological contexts in which they function and which they may require for correct folding. Data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD001692.

  20. Colonization and Biology of Phlebotomus pa­patasi, the Main Vector of Cutaneous Leishmani­asis due to Leshmania major