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Sample records for human disturbance alters

  1. Human disturbance alters endocrine and immune responses in the Galapagos marine iguana (Amblyrhynchus cristatus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, Susannah S; DeNardo, Dale F.; Greives, Timothy J.; Strand, Christine R.; Demas, Gregory E.

    2010-01-01

    Anthropogenic disturbance is a relevant and widespread facilitator of environmental change and there is clear evidence that it impacts natural populations. While population-level responses to major anthropogenic changes have been well studied, individual physiological responses to mild disturbance can be equally critical to the long-term survival of a species, yet they remain largely unexamined. The current study investigated the impact of seemingly low-level anthropogenic disturbance (ecotourism) on stress responsiveness and specific fitness-related immune measures in different breeding stages of the marine iguana (Amblyrhynchus cristatus). Specifically, we found stress-induced elevations in plasma corticosterone among tourist-exposed populations relative to undisturbed populations. We also found changes in multiple immunological responses associated with stress-related effects of human disturbance, including bacterial killing ability, cutaneous wound healing, and hemolytic complement activity, and the responses varied according to reproductive state. By identifying health-related consequences of human disturbance, this study provides critical insight into the conservation of a well-known species that has a very distinct ecology. The study also broadens the foundation of knowledge needed to understand the global significance of various levels of human disturbance. PMID:20708010

  2. Human disturbance alters endocrine and immune responses in the Galapagos marine iguana (Amblyrhynchus cristatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, Susannah S; DeNardo, Dale F; Greives, Timothy J; Strand, Christine R; Demas, Gregory E

    2010-11-01

    Anthropogenic disturbance is a relevant and widespread facilitator of environmental change and there is clear evidence that it impacts natural populations. While population-level responses to major anthropogenic changes have been well studied, individual physiological responses to mild disturbance can be equally critical to the long-term survival of a species, yet they remain largely unexamined. The current study investigated the impact of seemingly low-level anthropogenic disturbance (ecotourism) on stress responsiveness and specific fitness-related immune measures in different breeding stages of the marine iguana (Amblyrhynchus cristatus). Specifically, we found stress-induced elevations in plasma corticosterone among tourist-exposed populations relative to undisturbed populations. We also found changes in multiple immunological responses associated with stress-related effects of human disturbance, including bacterial killing ability, cutaneous wound healing, and hemolytic complement activity, and the responses varied according to reproductive state. By identifying health-related consequences of human disturbance, this study provides critical insight into the conservation of a well-known species that has a very distinct ecology. The study also broadens the foundation of knowledge needed to understand the global significance of various levels of human disturbance. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Disturbed neuronal ER-Golgi sorting of unassembled glycine receptors suggests altered subcellular processing is a cause of human hyperekplexia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaefer, Natascha; Kluck, Christoph J; Price, Kerry L; Meiselbach, Heike; Vornberger, Nadine; Schwarzinger, Stephan; Hartmann, Stephanie; Langlhofer, Georg; Schulz, Solveig; Schlegel, Nadja; Brockmann, Knut; Lynch, Bryan; Becker, Cord-Michael; Lummis, Sarah C R; Villmann, Carmen

    2015-01-07

    Recent studies on the pathogenic mechanisms of recessive hyperekplexia indicate disturbances in glycine receptor (GlyR) α1 biogenesis. Here, we examine the properties of a range of novel glycine receptor mutants identified in human hyperekplexia patients using expression in transfected cell lines and primary neurons. All of the novel mutants localized in the large extracellular domain of the GlyR α1 have reduced cell surface expression with a high proportion of receptors being retained in the ER, although there is forward trafficking of glycosylated subpopulations into the ER-Golgi intermediate compartment and cis-Golgi compartment. CD spectroscopy revealed that the mutant receptors have proportions of secondary structural elements similar to wild-type receptors. Two mutants in loop B (G160R, T162M) were functional, but none of those in loop D/β2-3 were. One nonfunctional truncated mutant (R316X) could be rescued by coexpression with the lacking C-terminal domain. We conclude that a proportion of GlyR α1 mutants can be transported to the plasma membrane but do not necessarily form functional ion channels. We suggest that loop D/β2-3 is an important determinant for GlyR trafficking and functionality, whereas alterations to loop B alter agonist potencies, indicating that residues here are critical elements in ligand binding. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/350422-16$15.00/0.

  4. Disturbed Placental Imprinting in Preeclampsia Leads to Altered Expression of DLX5, a Human-Specific Early Trophoblast Marker.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zadora, Julianna; Singh, Manvendra; Herse, Florian; Przybyl, Lukasz; Haase, Nadine; Golic, Michaela; Yung, Hong Wa; Huppertz, Berthold; Cartwright, Judith E; Whitley, Guy; Johnsen, Guro M; Levi, Giovanni; Isbruch, Annette; Schulz, Herbert; Luft, Friedrich C; Müller, Dominik N; Staff, Anne Cathrine; Hurst, Laurence D; Dechend, Ralf; Izsvák, Zsuzsanna

    2017-11-07

    Preeclampsia is a complex and common human-specific pregnancy syndrome associated with placental pathology. The human specificity provides both intellectual and methodological challenges, lacking a robust model system. Given the role of imprinted genes in human placentation and the vulnerability of imprinted genes to loss of imprinting changes, there has been extensive speculation, but no robust evidence, that imprinted genes are involved in preeclampsia. Our study aims to investigate whether disturbed imprinting contributes to preeclampsia. We first aimed to confirm that preeclampsia is a disease of the placenta by generating and analyzing genome-wide molecular data on well-characterized patient material. We performed high-throughput transcriptome analyses of multiple placenta samples from healthy controls and patients with preeclampsia. Next, we identified differentially expressed genes in preeclamptic placentas and intersected them with the list of human imprinted genes. We used bioinformatics/statistical analyses to confirm association between imprinting and preeclampsia and to predict biological processes affected in preeclampsia. Validation included epigenetic and cellular assays. In terms of human specificity, we established an in vitro invasion-differentiation trophoblast model. Our comparative phylogenetic analysis involved single-cell transcriptome data of human, macaque, and mouse preimplantation embryogenesis. We found disturbed placental imprinting in preeclampsia and revealed potential candidates, including GATA3 and DLX5 , with poorly explored imprinted status and no prior association with preeclampsia. As a result of loss of imprinting, DLX5 was upregulated in 69% of preeclamptic placentas. Levels of DLX5 correlated with classic preeclampsia markers. DLX5 is expressed in human but not in murine trophoblast. The DLX5 high phenotype resulted in reduced proliferation, increased metabolism, and endoplasmic reticulum stress-response activation in

  5. Anthropogenic halo disturbances alter landscape and plant richness: a ripple effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Bingliang; Su, Jinbao; Chen, Jianwei; Cui, Guofa; Ma, Jianzhang

    2013-01-01

    Although anthropogenic landscape fragmentation is often considered as the primary threat to biodiversity, other factors such as immediate human disturbances may also simultaneously threaten species persistence in various ways. In this paper, we introduce a conceptual framework applied to recreation landscapes (RLs), with an aim to provide insight into the composite influences of landscape alteration accompanying immediate human disturbances on plant richness dynamics. These impacts largely occur at patch-edges. They can not only alter patch-edge structure and environment, but also permeate into surrounding natural matrices/patches affecting species persistence-here we term these "Halo disturbance effects" (HDEs). We categorized species into groups based on seed or pollen dispersal mode (animal- vs. wind-dispersed) as they can be associated with species richness dynamics. We evaluated the richness of the two groups and total species in our experimental landscapes by considering the distance from patch-edge, the size of RLs and the intensity of human use over a six-year period. Our results show that animal-dispersed species decreased considerably, whereas wind-dispersed species increased while their richness presented diverse dynamics at different distances from patch-edges. Our findings clearly demonstrate that anthropogenic HDEs produce ripple effects on plant, providing an experimental interpretation for the diverse responses of species to anthropogenic disturbances. This study highlights the importance of incorporating these composite threats into conservation and management strategies.

  6. Anthropogenic halo disturbances alter landscape and plant richness: a ripple effect.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bingliang Liu

    Full Text Available Although anthropogenic landscape fragmentation is often considered as the primary threat to biodiversity, other factors such as immediate human disturbances may also simultaneously threaten species persistence in various ways. In this paper, we introduce a conceptual framework applied to recreation landscapes (RLs, with an aim to provide insight into the composite influences of landscape alteration accompanying immediate human disturbances on plant richness dynamics. These impacts largely occur at patch-edges. They can not only alter patch-edge structure and environment, but also permeate into surrounding natural matrices/patches affecting species persistence-here we term these "Halo disturbance effects" (HDEs. We categorized species into groups based on seed or pollen dispersal mode (animal- vs. wind-dispersed as they can be associated with species richness dynamics. We evaluated the richness of the two groups and total species in our experimental landscapes by considering the distance from patch-edge, the size of RLs and the intensity of human use over a six-year period. Our results show that animal-dispersed species decreased considerably, whereas wind-dispersed species increased while their richness presented diverse dynamics at different distances from patch-edges. Our findings clearly demonstrate that anthropogenic HDEs produce ripple effects on plant, providing an experimental interpretation for the diverse responses of species to anthropogenic disturbances. This study highlights the importance of incorporating these composite threats into conservation and management strategies.

  7. Disturbance alters local-regional richness relationships in appalachian forests

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    Belote, R.T.; Sanders, N.J.; Jones, R.H.

    2009-01-01

    Whether biological diversity within communities is limited by local interactions or regional species pools remains an important question in ecology. In this paper, we investigate how an experimentally applied tree-harvesting disturbance gradient influenced local-regional richness relationships. Plant species richness was measured at three spatial scales (2 ha = regional; 576 m2 and 1 m2 = local) on three occasions (one year pre-disturbance, one year post-disturbance, and 10 years post-disturbance) across five disturbance treatments (uncut control through clearcut) replicated throughout the southern Appalachian Mountains, USA. We investigated whether species richness in 576-m2 plots and 1-m2 subplots depended on species richness in 2-ha experimental units and whether this relationship changed through time before and after canopy disturbance. We found that, before disturbance, the relationship between local and regional richness was weak or nonexistent. One year after disturbance local richness was a positive function of regional richness, because local sites were colonized from the regional species pool. Ten years after disturbance, the positive relationship persisted, but the slope had decreased by half. These results suggest that disturbance can set the stage for strong influences of regional species pools on local community assembly in temperate forests. However, as time since disturbance increases, local controls on community assembly decouple the relationships between regional and local diversity. ?? 2009 by the Ecological Society of America.

  8. [Ecotourism disturbances to non-human primates].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Peng-Lai; Xiang, Zuo-Fu

    2013-02-01

    In tandem with economic growth and rising living conditions, ecotourism has increasingly gained popularity among the Chinese public. Non-human primates, as charismatic animals and the closest relatives of human beings, have shown a strong affinity in attracting the general public and raising money, and for that reason a variety of monkey parks, valleys, and islands are becoming increasingly popular in China. Though successful in raising a substantial sum of money for the managing agency of a nature reserve, there may be negative impacts on monkey groups used in ecotourism. Here, to establish effective guards for non-human primates involved in ecotourism, we present a review on tourism disturbance and summarize the negative impacts on behavioral patterns, reproduction, and health condition of animals.

  9. Timing is everything: priority effects alter community invasibility after disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Symons, Celia C; Arnott, Shelley E

    2014-02-01

    Theory suggests that communities should be more open to the establishment of regional species following disturbance because disturbance may make more resources available to dispersers. However, after an initial period of high invasibility, growth of the resident community may lead to the monopolization of local resources and decreased probability of successful colonist establishment. During press disturbances (i.e., directional environmental change), it remains unclear what effect regional dispersal will have on local community structure if the establishment of later arriving species is affected by early arriving species (i.e., if priority effects are important). To determine the relationship between time-since-disturbance and invasibility, we conducted a fully factorial field mesocosm experiment that exposed tundra zooplankton communities to two emerging stressors - nutrient and salt addition, and manipulated the arrival timing of regional dispersers. Our results demonstrate that invasibility decreases with increasing time-since-disturbance as abundance (nutrient treatments) or species richness (salt treatments) increases in the resident community. Results suggest that the relative timing of dispersal and environmental change will modify the importance of priority effects in determining species composition after a press disturbance.

  10. Riparian vegetation response to altered disturbance and stress regimes

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    Shafroth, P.B.; Stromberg, J.C.; Patten, D.T.

    2002-01-01

    Management of terrestrial carbon fluxes is being proposed as a means of increasing the amount of carbon sequestered in the terrestrial biosphere. This approach is generally viewed only as an interim strategy for the coming decades while other longer-term strategies are developed and implemented — the most important being the direct reduction of carbon emissions. We are concerned that the potential for rapid, disturbance-induced losses may be much greater than is currently appreciated, especially by the decision-making community. Here we wish to: (1) highlight the complex and threshold-like nature of disturbances — such as fire and drought, as well as the erosion associated with each — that could lead to carbon losses; (2) note the global extent of ecosystems that are at risk of such disturbance-induced carbon losses; and (3) call for increased consideration of and research on the mechanisms by which large, rapid disturbance-induced losses of terrestrial carbon could occur. Our lack of ability as a scientific community to predict such ecosystem dynamics is precluding the effective consideration of these processes into strategies and policies related to carbon management and sequestration. Consequently, scientists need to do more to improve quantification of these potential losses and to integrate them into sound, sustainable policy options.

  11. Climate Change Altered Disturbance Regimes in High Elevation Pine Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Logan, J. A.

    2004-12-01

    Insects in aggregate are the greatest cause of forest disturbance. Outbreaks of both native and exotic insects can be spectacular events in both their intensity and spatial extent. In the case of native species, forest ecosystems have co-evolved (or at least co-adapted) in ways that incorporate these disturbances into the normal cycle of forest maturation and renewal. The time frame of response to changing climate, however, is much shorter for insects (typically one year) than for their host forests (decades or longer). As a result, outbreaks of forest insects, particularly bark beetles, are occurring at unprecedented levels throughout western North America, resulting in the loss of biodiversity and potentially entire ecosystems. In this talk, I will describe one such ecosystem, the whitebark pine association at high elevations in the north-central Rocky Mountains of the United States. White bark pines are keystone species, which in consort with Clark's nutcracker, build entire ecosystems at high elevations. These ecosystems provide valuable ecological services, including the distribution and abundance of water resources. I will briefly describe the keystone nature of whitebark pine and the historic role of mountain pine beetle disturbance in these ecosystems. The mountain pine beetle is the most important outbreak insect in forests of the western United States. Although capable of spectacular outbreak events, in historic climate regimes, outbreak populations were largely restricted to lower elevation pines; for example, lodgepole and ponderosa pines. The recent series of unusually warm years, however, has allowed this insect to expand its range into high elevation, whitebark pine ecosystems with devastating consequences. The aspects of mountain pine beetle thermal ecology that has allowed it to capitalize so effectively on a warming climate will be discussed. A model that incorporates critical thermal attributes of the mountain pine beetle's life cycle was

  12. Forest legacies, climate change, altered disturbance regimes, invasive species and water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stohlgren, T.; Jarnevich, C.; Kumar, S.

    2007-01-01

    The factors that must be considered in seeking to predict changes in water availability has been examined. These factors are the following: forest legacies including logging, mining, agriculture, grazing, elimination of large carnivores, human-caused wildfire, and pollution; climate change and stream flow; altered disturbances such as frequency intensity and pattern of wildfires and insect outbreaks as well as flood control; lastly, invasive species like forest pests and pathogens. An integrated approach quantifying the current and past condition trends can be combined with spatial and temporal modeling to develop future change in forest structures and water supply. The key is a combination of geographic information system technologies with climate and land use scenarios, while preventing and minimizing the effects of harmful invasive species.

  13. Plant hybridization: the role of human disturbance and biological invasion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qinfeng Guo

    2014-01-01

    Aim Anderson & Stebbins (1954, Evolution, 8, 378–388) posited that human activities promote species hybridizations by creating opportunities for hybridization and new habitats for hybrids to persist through disturbances (i.e. the ‘disturbance hypothesis’). While the first part of this hypothesis appears to be well supported, the second part has...

  14. Impacts of geo-physical factors and human disturbance on ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    We examined vegetation-disturbance-environment relationships in the Xiaomengyang Section of Xishuangbanna Nature Reserve (XNR) using multivariate analysis to understand the impacts of geo-physical factors and human disturbance on vegetation along the highway corridor. We found that native forests were the best ...

  15. Alterations in geochemical associations in artificially disturbed deep-sea sediments

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Nath, B.N.; Parthiban, G.; Banaulikar, S.; Sarkar, S.

    Alterations in Geochemical Associations in Artificially Disturbed Deep-Sea Sediments B. NAGENDER NATH, G. PARTHIBAN, AND S. BANAULIKAR National Institute of Oceanography, Dona Paula, Goa, India SUBHADEEP SARKAR Department of Geology and Geophysics, Indian... the lithogenic component by transporting it from other locations within the Basin during commercial mining operations. Keywords manganese nodule mining, artificial benthic disturbance experiment, environmental impact assessment, metals Trace metals in marine...

  16. Altered cortical expression of GABA-related genes in schizophrenia: illness progression vs developmental disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoftman, Gil D; Volk, David W; Bazmi, H Holly; Li, Siyu; Sampson, Allan R; Lewis, David A

    2015-01-01

    Schizophrenia is a neurodevelopmental disorder with altered expression of GABA-related genes in the prefrontal cortex (PFC). However, whether these gene expression abnormalities reflect disturbances in postnatal developmental processes before clinical onset or arise as a consequence of clinical illness remains unclear. Expression levels for 7 GABA-related transcripts (vesicular GABA transporter [vGAT], GABA membrane transporter [GAT1], GABAA receptor subunit α1 [GABRA1] [novel in human and monkey cohorts], glutamic acid decarboxylase 67 [GAD67], parvalbumin, calretinin, and somatostatin [previously reported in human cohort, but not in monkey cohort]) were quantified in the PFC from 42 matched pairs of schizophrenia and comparison subjects and from 49 rhesus monkeys ranging in age from 1 week postnatal to adulthood. Levels of vGAT and GABRA1, but not of GAT1, messenger RNAs (mRNAs) were lower in the PFC of the schizophrenia subjects. As previously reported, levels of GAD67, parvalbumin, and somatostatin, but not of calretinin, mRNAs were also lower in these subjects. Neither illness duration nor age accounted for the levels of the transcripts with altered expression in schizophrenia. In monkey PFC, developmental changes in expression levels of many of these transcripts were in the opposite direction of the changes observed in schizophrenia. For example, mRNA levels for vGAT, GABRA1, GAD67, and parvalbumin all increased with age. Together with published reports, these findings support the interpretation that the altered expression of GABA-related transcripts in schizophrenia reflects a blunting of normal postnatal development changes, but they cannot exclude a decline during the early stages of clinical illness. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. Experimental evidence of human recreational disturbance effects on bird-territory establishment.

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    Bötsch, Yves; Tablado, Zulima; Jenni, Lukas

    2017-07-12

    The worldwide increase in human outdoor activities raises concerns for wildlife. Human disturbances, even at low levels, are likely to impact species during sensitive periods of the annual cycle. However, experimental studies during the putative sensitive period of territory establishment of birds which not only investigate low disturbance levels, but which also exclude the effect of habitat modification (e.g. walking trails) are lacking. Here, we experimentally disturbed birds in forest plots by walking through twice a day during territory establishment. Later we compared the breeding bird community of experimentally disturbed plots with that of undisturbed control plots. We discovered that the number of territories (-15.0%) and species richness (-15.2%) in disturbed plots were substantially reduced compared with control plots. Species most affected included those sensitive to human presence (assessed by flight-initiation distances), open-cup nesters and above-ground foragers. Long-distance migrants, however, were unaffected due to their arrival after experimental disturbance took place. These findings highlight how territory establishment is a sensitive period for birds, when even low levels of human recreation may be perceived as threatening, and alter settlement decisions. This can have important implications for the conservation of species, which might go unnoticed when focusing only on already established birds. © 2017 The Author(s).

  18. Ground-nesting marine birds and potential for human disturbance in Glacier Bay National Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arimitsu, Mayumi L.; Romano, Marc D.; Piatt, John F.; Piatt, John F.; Gende, S.M.

    2004-01-01

    Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve contains a diverse assemblage of marine birds that use the area for nesting, foraging and molting. The abundance and diversity of marine bird species in Glacier Bay is unmatched in the region, due in part to the geomorphic and successional characteristics that result in a wide array of habitat types (Robards and others, 2003). The opportunity for proactive management of these species is unique in Glacier Bay National Park because much of the suitable marine bird nesting habitat occurs in areas designated as wilderness. Ground-nesting marine birds are vulnerable to human disturbance wherever visitors can access nest sites during the breeding season. Human disturbance of nest sites can be significant because intense parental care is required for egg and hatchling survival, and repeated disturbance can result in reduced productivity (Leseberg and others, 2000). Temporary nest desertion by breeding birds in disturbed areas can lead to increased predation on eggs and hatchlings by conspecifics or other predators (Bolduc and Guillemette, 2003). Human disturbance of ground-nesting birds may also affect incubation time and adult foraging success, which in turn can alter breeding success (Verhulst and others, 2001). Furthermore, human activity can potentially cause colony failure when disturbance prevents the initiation of nesting (Hatch, 2002). There is management concern about the susceptibility of breeding birds to disturbance from human activities, but little historical data has been collected on the distribution of ground-nesting marine birds in Glacier Bay. This report summarizes results obtained during two years of a three-year study to determine the distribution of ground-nesting marine birds in Glacier Bay, and the potential for human disturbance of those nesting birds.

  19. TFIIH subunit alterations causing xeroderma pigmentosum and trichothiodystrophy specifically disturb several steps during transcription.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Amita; Compe, Emanuel; Le May, Nicolas; Egly, Jean-Marc

    2015-02-05

    Mutations in genes encoding the ERCC3 (XPB), ERCC2 (XPD), and GTF2H5 (p8 or TTD-A) subunits of the transcription and DNA-repair factor TFIIH lead to three autosomal-recessive disorders: xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), XP associated with Cockayne syndrome (XP/CS), and trichothiodystrophy (TTD). Although these diseases were originally associated with defects in DNA repair, transcription deficiencies might be also implicated. By using retinoic acid receptor beta isoform 2 (RARB2) as a model in several cells bearing mutations in genes encoding TFIIH subunits, we observed that (1) the recruitment of the TFIIH complex was altered at the activated RARB2 promoter, (2) TFIIH participated in the recruitment of nucleotide excision repair (NER) factors during transcription in a manner different from that observed during NER, and (3) the different TFIIH variants disturbed transcription by having distinct consequences on post-translational modifications of histones, DNA-break induction, DNA demethylation, and gene-loop formation. The transition from heterochromatin to euchromatin was disrupted depending on the variant, illustrating the fact that TFIIH, by contributing to NER factor recruitment, orchestrates chromatin remodeling. The subtle transcriptional differences found between various TFIIH variants thus participate in the phenotypic variability observed among XP, XP/CS, and TTD individuals. Copyright © 2015 The American Society of Human Genetics. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Biotic Responses of Headwater Streams to Geophysical Alteration and Disturbance Related to Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gresswell, R. E.; Sedell, E. R.; Cannon, S.; Hostetler, S. W.; Williams, J. E.; Haak, A. L.; Kershner, J. L.

    2009-12-01

    Climate change will potentially alter physical habitat availability for trout species (both native and nonnative) in the western USA, and ultimately affect population distribution and abundance in watersheds across the region. To understand the biological consequences of habitat alteration associated with climate change, we have developed models linking contemporary patterns of occurrence and abundance to geomorphic variables (e.g., aspect, elevation, and slope) and stream conditions derived from the habitat (e.g., temperature, discharge, and flood regimes). Because headwater streams may be especially susceptible to catastrophic disturbances in the form of debris flow torrents that have the potential to radically alter the physical structure of channels and sometimes extirpate local fish populations, we are focusing fine-scale spatial analyses in the high elevation systems. Risks of such disturbances increase exponentially in landscapes that have experienced recent wildfires when high-intensity precipitation or runoff events occur. Although predicting the timing, extent, and severity of future wildfires or subsequent precipitation and runoff events is difficult, it is possible to identify channels within stream networks that may be prone to debris flows. These channels can be identified using models based on characteristic storm and burn scenarios and geographic information describing topographic, soil, and vegetation characteristics. At-risk channels are being mapped throughout the stream networks within the study areas in the headwaters of the Colorado River to provide information about the potential for catastrophic population disturbance in response to variety of wildfire and post-wildfire storm scenarios.

  1. Inter-specific variation in avian responses to human disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniel T. Blumstein; Esteban Fernandez-Juricic; Patrick A. Zollner; Susan C. Garity

    2005-01-01

    1. Increasing urbanization and recreational activities around and within biodiversity hotspots require an understanding of how to reduce the impacts of human disturbance on more than a single species; however, we lack a general framework to study multiple species. One approach is to expand on knowledge about the theory of anti-predator behaviour to understand and...

  2. Impacts of an invasive plant are fundamentally altered by a co-occurring forest disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sokol, Noah W; Kuebbing, Sara E; Bradford, Mark A

    2017-08-01

    Invasive species frequently co-occur with other disturbances, which can impact the same ecosystem functions as the invader. Yet invasion studies rarely control for the presence of these other disturbances, although their overlapping effects may influence the direction and magnitude of impacts attributed to the invader alone. Here, we ask whether controlling for the presence of a co-occurring disturbance, as well as the time since disturbance, yields different values of an invader's ecosystem effects than when these factors remain unaddressed. We used a chronosequence of six forest stands at a single site: five logged stands that each contained paired invaded-uninvaded plots of the forest understory invasive grass Microstegium vimineum, as well as one unlogged and uninvaded control stand. By controlling for the presence of both logging and invasion, we untangled the effects of each through time. We found that the co-occurring disturbance of logging can dramatically alter the measured effects of M. vimineum by amplifying, dampening, negating, or entirely reversing the direction of the invader's impacts. During its period of peak impact, logging amplified the invader's positive effect on the size of the soil microbial biomass pool by 24%, reduced the invader's positive effect on soil water holding capacity by 5%, negated the invader's positive effect on the particulate organic matter carbon pool (from a 9% increase to no significant effect), and reversed the direction of the invader's impact on net nitrogen mineralization rate from a 51% increase to a 52% decrease. Furthermore, the influence of logging on the invader's impacts was not static, but dynamic through time. The results from our site therefore demonstrate that failure to account for the impacts of a co-occurring disturbance, as well as the time since disturbance, can result in flawed inference about the nature of an invader's effects. Future research should determine how widespread such flawed inference

  3. Behavioral disturbances, not cognitive deterioration, are associated with altered food selection in seniors with Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenwood, Carol E; Tam, Carolyn; Chan, Mae; Young, Karen W H; Binns, Malcolm A; van Reekum, Robert

    2005-04-01

    We previously reported alterations in circadian patterns of food intake that are associated with measures of functional and cognitive deterioration in seniors with probable Alzheimer's disease (AD). This study further explored disturbed eating patterns in AD, focusing on alterations in macronutrient (protein, carbohydrate, and fat) selection, and their association with measures of functional and behavioral losses. Forty-nine days of food intake collections were conducted on 32 residents (26 females, 6 males; age = 88.4 +/- 4.1 years; body mass index = 24.1 +/- 4.0 kg/m(2)) with probable AD residing at a nursing home (a fully accredited geriatric teaching facility affiliated with the University of Toronto's Medical School). All residents ate their meals independently. The relationships between patterns of habitual food consumption and measures of cognitive function (Severe Impairment Battery), behavioral disturbances (Neuropsychiatric Inventory-Nursing Home Version) and behavioral function (London Psychogeriatric Rating Scale) were examined, cross-sectionally. Consistent with our previous studies, breakfast intakes were not predicted by any of the measures of behavioral, cognitive, or functional deterioration, although those residents with greater functional deterioration, especially disengagement, attained lower 24-hour energy intakes. The presence of "psychomotor disturbances," including irritability, agitation, and disinhibition, were strongly associated with shifts in eating patterns toward carbohydrate and away from protein, placing individuals with these conditions at increased risk for inadequate protein intakes. Between-individual differences in intake patterns could not be explained by the use of either anorexic or orexigenic medications. Behavioral, not cognitive, deterioration is associated with appetite modifications that increase risk of poor protein intake, perhaps indicating a common monoaminergic involvement.

  4. Sandhill crane roost selection, human disturbance, and forage resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearse, Aaron T.; Krapu, Gary; Brandt, David

    2017-01-01

    Sites used for roosting represent a key habitat requirement for many species of birds because availability and quality of roost sites can influence individual fitness. Birds select roost sites based on numerous factors, requirements, and motivations, and selection of roosts can be dynamic in time and space because of various ecological and environmental influences. For sandhill cranes (Antigone canadensis) at their main spring-staging area along the Platte River in south-central Nebraska, USA, past investigations of roosting cranes focused on physical channel characteristics related to perceived security as motivating roost distribution. We used 6,310 roost sites selected by 313 sandhill cranes over 5 spring migration seasons (2003–2007) to quantify resource selection functions of roost sites on the central Platte River using a discrete choice analysis. Sandhill cranes generally showed stronger selection for wider channels with shorter bank vegetation situated farther from potential human disturbance features such as roads, bridges, and dwellings. Furthermore, selection for roost sites with preferable physical characteristics (wide channels with short bank vegetation) was more resilient to nearby disturbance features than more narrow channels with taller bank vegetation. The amount of cornfields surrounding sandhill crane roost sites positively influenced relative probability of use but only for more narrow channels resource features that sandhill cranes selected at river channels along the Platte River, and after incorporating spatial variation due to human disturbance, our understanding of roost site selection was more robust, providing insights on how disturbance may interact with physical habitat features. Managers can use information on roost-site selection when developing plans to increase probability of crane use at existing roost sites and to identify new areas for potential use if existing sites become limited.

  5. Sandhill crane roost selection, human disturbance, and forage resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearse, Aaron T.; Krapu, Gary; Brandt, David

    2017-01-01

    Sites used for roosting represent a key habitat requirement for many species of birds because availability and quality of roost sites can influence individual fitness. Birds select roost sites based on numerous factors, requirements, and motivations, and selection of roosts can be dynamic in time and space because of various ecological and environmental influences. For sandhill cranes (Antigone canadensis) at their main spring-staging area along the Platte River in south-central Nebraska, USA, past investigations of roosting cranes focused on physical channel characteristics related to perceived security as motivating roost distribution. We used 6,310 roost sites selected by 313 sandhill cranes over 5 spring migration seasons (2003–2007) to quantify resource selection functions of roost sites on the central Platte River using a discrete choice analysis. Sandhill cranes generally showed stronger selection for wider channels with shorter bank vegetation situated farther from potential human disturbance features such as roads, bridges, and dwellings. Furthermore, selection for roost sites with preferable physical characteristics (wide channels with short bank vegetation) was more resilient to nearby disturbance features than more narrow channels with taller bank vegetation. The amount of cornfields surrounding sandhill crane roost sites positively influenced relative probability of use but only for more narrow channels < 100 m and those with shorter bank vegetation. We confirmed key resource features that sandhill cranes selected at river channels along the Platte River, and after incorporating spatial variation due to human disturbance, our understanding of roost site selection was more robust, providing insights on how disturbance may interact with physical habitat features. Managers can use information on roost-site selection when developing plans to increase probability of crane use at existing roost sites and to identify new areas for potential use if

  6. Human disturbances of denning polar bears in Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Amstrup, S.C.

    1993-01-01

    Polar bears (Ursus maritimus) give birth in dens of snow and ice. The altricial neonates cannot leave the den for >2 months post-partum and are potentially vulnerable to disturbances near dens. The coastal plain (1002) area of Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) lies in a region of known polar bear denning and also may contain >9 billion barrels of recoverable oil. Polar bears in dens could be affected in many ways by hydrocarbon development. The distribution of dens on ANWR was documented between 1981 and 1992 and responses of bears in dens to various anthropogenic disturbances were observed. Of 44 dens located by radiotelemetry on the mainland coast of Alaska and Canada, 20 (45%) were on ANWR and 15 (34%) were within the 1002 area. Thus, development of ANWR will increase the potential that denning polar bears are disturbed by human activities. However, perturbations resulting from capture, marking, and radiotracking maternal bears did not affect litter sizes or stature of cubs produced. Likewise, 10 of 12 denned polar bears tolerated exposure to exceptional levels of activity. This tolerance and the fact that investment in the denning effort increases through the winter indicated that spatial and temporal restrictions on developments could prevent the potential for many disruptions of denned bears from being realized. 16 refs., 1 fig., 2 tabs

  7. Legacy effects of no-analogue disturbances alter plant community diversity and composition in semi-arid sagebrush steppe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ripplinger, Julie; Franklin, Janet; Edwards, Thomas C.

    2015-01-01

    Questions(i) What role does the type of managed disturbance play in structuring sagebrush steppe plant communities? (ii) How does the composition of post-disturbance plant communities change with time since disturbance? (iii) Does plant community diversity change over time following managed disturbance?LocationField study within the sagebrush steppe ecosystem. Rich County, Utah, USA.MethodsWe developed a chronosequence spanning up to 50 yrs post-treatment to study sagebrush steppe vegetation dynamics. Direct ordination was used to examine plant community composition by managed disturbance type and time since disturbance, and factorial analysis of covariance was used to examine diversity dynamics following disturbance. Indicator species values were calculated in order to identify characteristic species for each disturbance type.ResultsPlant communities experienced a shift toward distinct community composition for each of the three managed disturbance types, and gave no indication of returning to untreated community composition or diversity. Small post-disturbance increases in the number of non-native grass species were observed in the treatments relative to reference, with native forb species making the largest contribution to altered composition. On fire- and chemically-treated sites the proportional native forb species richness increased over time since disturbance, while the proportional contribution of non-native forbs to total species richness decreased. For all three treatment types, native grasses contributed less on average to total richness than on reference sites, while non-native grasses made up a higher proportion of total richness.ConclusionsCommon shrubland management techniques have legacy effects on the composition and diversity of sagebrush steppe plant communities, and no-analogue disturbances, such as chemical or mechanical treatments, have more pronounced legacy effects than treatments similar to natural disturbance regimes (fire). This study

  8. Human reproductive system disturbances and pesticide exposure in Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koifman Sergio

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available The observation of reproductive disturbances in humans and in the wildlife has been reported in the last decade in different countries. Exposure to different chemicals possibly acting in the endocrine system or endocrine disruptors, including pesticides, has been a hypothesis raised to explain the observed changes. This paper aimed to present results of an epidemiological ecologic study carried out to explore population data on pesticides exposure in selected Brazilian states in the eighties and human reproductive outcomes in the nineties. Pearson correlation coefficients were ascertained between available data pesticides sales in eleven states in Brazil in 1985 and selected further reproductive outcomes or their surrogates. Moderate to high correlations were observed to infertility, testis, breast, prostate and ovarian cancer mortality. Despite the restrains of ecologic studies to establish cause-effect relationships, the observed results are in agreement with evidence supporting a possible association between pesticides exposure and the analyzed reproductive outcomes.

  9. Experimental evidence for effects of human disturbance on foraging and parental care in oystercatchers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhulst, S; Oosterbeek, K; Ens, B.J.

    2001-01-01

    We carried out two experiments to quantify effects of human disturbance on foraging and parental care in European oystercatchers (Haematopus ostralegus). In experiment 1, pairs incubating a clutch were disturbed on their feeding territory on the mudflat. Disturbance significantly reduced the

  10. Disturbances of electrodynamic activity affect abortion in human

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jandová, A; Cifra, M; Pokorný, J; Nedbalová, M; Dohnalová, A; Kobilková, J; Cocek, A

    2011-01-01

    Biochemical research of biological systems is highly developed, and it has disclosed a spectrum of chemical reactions, genetic processes, and the pathological development of various diseases. The fundamental hypothesis of physical processes in biological systems, in particular of coherent electrically polar vibrations and electromagnetic activity, was formulated by H. Fröhlich; he assumed connection of cancer process with degradation of coherent electromagnetic activity. But the questions of cellular structures capable of the coherent electrical polar oscillation, mechanisms of energy supply, and the specific role of the endogenous electromagnetic fields in transport, organisation, interactions, and information transfer remained open. The nature of physical disturbances caused by some diseases (including the recurrent abortion in humans and the cancer) was unknown. We have studied the reasons of recurrent abortions in humans by means of the cell mediated immunity (using immunologic active RNA prepared from blood of inbred laboratory mice strain C3H/H2K, infected with the lactate dehydrogenase elevating virus-LD V) and the cytogenetic examination from karyotype pictures. The recurrent abortion group contained women with dg. spontaneous abortion (n = 24) and the control group was composed of 30 healthy pregnant women. Our hypothesis was related to quality of endometrium in relation to nidation of the blastocyst. The energetic insufficiency (ATP) inhibits normal development of fetus and placenta. We hope that these ideas might have impact on further research, which could provide background for effective interdisciplinary cooperation of malignant and non-malignant diseases.

  11. Disturbances of electrodynamic activity affect abortion in human

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jandová, A.; Nedbalová, M.; Kobilková, J.; Čoček, A.; Dohnalová, A.; Cifra, M.; Pokorný, J.

    2011-12-01

    Biochemical research of biological systems is highly developed, and it has disclosed a spectrum of chemical reactions, genetic processes, and the pathological development of various diseases. The fundamental hypothesis of physical processes in biological systems, in particular of coherent electrically polar vibrations and electromagnetic activity, was formulated by H. Fröhlich he assumed connection of cancer process with degradation of coherent electromagnetic activity. But the questions of cellular structures capable of the coherent electrical polar oscillation, mechanisms of energy supply, and the specific role of the endogenous electromagnetic fields in transport, organisation, interactions, and information transfer remained open. The nature of physical disturbances caused by some diseases (including the recurrent abortion in humans and the cancer) was unknown. We have studied the reasons of recurrent abortions in humans by means of the cell mediated immunity (using immunologic active RNA prepared from blood of inbred laboratory mice strain C3H/H2K, infected with the lactate dehydrogenase elevating virus-LD V) and the cytogenetic examination from karyotype pictures. The recurrent abortion group contained women with dg. spontaneous abortion (n = 24) and the control group was composed of 30 healthy pregnant women. Our hypothesis was related to quality of endometrium in relation to nidation of the blastocyst. The energetic insufficiency (ATP) inhibits normal development of fetus and placenta. We hope that these ideas might have impact on further research, which could provide background for effective interdisciplinary cooperation of malignant and non-malignant diseases.

  12. Beyond classic ecological assessment: The use of functional indices to indicate fish assemblages sensitivity to human disturbance in estuaries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teichert, Nils; Lepage, Mario; Lobry, Jérémy

    2018-05-22

    Assessing ecological health of aquatic ecosystems is crucial in the current context of biodiversity loss to guide and prioritize management actions. Although several fish-based indices were developed to assess the ecological status of estuarine ecosystems, they do not provide guidance on the causal responses of communities to disturbances. The functional trait-based approach provides an understanding of how human disturbance affects the composition of biological and ecological traits in assemblages, as well as their consequences for ecosystem functioning. Here, we evaluate the responses of fish assemblages to human disturbance in 30 French estuaries using several taxonomic and functional indices (e.g. diversity, evenness or redundancy). We tested whether these indices can provide additional information on the human impacts and health of assemblages that are not reflected by the ecological indicator (fish-based index ELFI). Results indicated that high values of local human disturbances were associated to a decrease in fish abundance, decrease in species richness and reduced functional redundancy, whereas taxonomic and functional evenness increased. In contrast, the functional richness remained stable suggesting that the functional traits of species removed by stressors were maintained by more tolerant species. Indeed, we found that the local disturbances mainly resulted in a decrease in the proportions of small benthic species feeding on macro-invertebrates, which were dominant in the studied estuaries. Some functional alterations were detected by the fish-based index, but the decline of functional redundancy was not reflected, highlighting a serious concern for management. Indeed, the abrupt collapse of functional redundancy in response to local disturbances can decrease the ability of assemblages to maintain certain species traits in the face of future environmental disturbance, including climate change. From a management perspective, the application of such

  13. Effects of human disturbance on nest placement of the woodpigeon (Columba palumbus): a case study from the Middle Atlas, Morocco.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanane, Saâd

    2014-06-01

    The woodpigeon (Columba palumbus) is a common and widespread bird in Morocco (North Africa). I examined, over 2 years (2010 and 2011), the breeding density and nest placement of this game species in relation to nest site habitat and degree of human disturbance. The study area was in the Middle Atlas Tighboula mountain forest, Morocco, in a disturbed and an undisturbed site. Using data collected in the 2 study sites, I aimed to identify the factors influencing the placement of nests within holm oak trees (Quercus rotundifolia) and their densities. I found that habitat structures, influenced by grazing disturbance, have affected nesting density and the location of nests of this species. Woodpigeons place their nests in a higher position (3.42 ± 0.19 m) when disturbance intensity is high and lower (1.68 ± 0.1 m) when disturbance intensity is low, and show higher nesting density in less disturbed zone (3.1 ± 0.4 nests/ha) than in highly disturbed zones (1.4 ± 0.2 nests/ha). Grazing disturbance could pose a threat to population persistence at a broader scale and could potentially reduce the abundance of this species by altering the composition and the structure of the forest nesting habitat. Further multi-scale studies are needed to assess the effects of different levels of grazing disturbance on woodpigeon nest density and placement, and to enhance our knowledge of the breeding behavior of this game species under variable environments. © 2013 International Society of Zoological Sciences, Institute of Zoology/Chinese Academy of Sciences and Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

  14. Meal time shift disturbs circadian rhythmicity along with metabolic and behavioral alterations in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji-Ae Yoon

    Full Text Available In modern society, growing numbers of people are engaged in various forms of shift works or trans-meridian travels. Such circadian misalignment is known to disturb endogenous diurnal rhythms, which may lead to harmful physiological consequences including metabolic syndrome, obesity, cancer, cardiovascular disorders, and gastric disorders as well as other physical and mental disorders. However, the precise mechanism(s underlying these changes are yet unclear. The present work, therefore examined the effects of 6 h advance or delay of usual meal time on diurnal rhythmicities in home cage activity (HCA, body temperature (BT, blood metabolic markers, glucose homeostasis, and expression of genes that are involved in cholesterol homeostasis by feeding young adult male mice in a time-restrictive manner. Delay of meal time caused locomotive hyperactivity in a significant portion (42% of subjects, while 6 h advance caused a torpor-like symptom during the late scotophase. Accordingly, daily rhythms of blood glucose and triglyceride were differentially affected by time-restrictive feeding regimen with concurrent metabolic alterations. Along with these physiological changes, time-restrictive feeding also influenced the circadian expression patterns of low density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR as well as most LDLR regulatory factors. Strikingly, chronic advance of meal time induced insulin resistance, while chronic delay significantly elevated blood glucose levels. Taken together, our findings indicate that persistent shifts in usual meal time impact the diurnal rhythms of carbohydrate and lipid metabolisms in addition to HCA and BT, thereby posing critical implications for the health and diseases of shift workers.

  15. Alterations of 5-Hydroxymethylcytosine in Human Cancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Yesilkanal

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Prior to 2009, 5-methylcytosine (5-mC was thought to be the only biologically significant cytosine modification in mammalian DNA. With the discovery of the TET enzymes, which convert 5-methylcytosine (5-mC to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5-hmC, however, intense interest has emerged in determining the biological function of 5-hmC. Here, we review the techniques used to study 5-hmC and evidence that alterations to 5-hmC physiology play a functional role in the molecular pathogenesis of human cancers.

  16. Effect of human disturbance on long-term habitat use and breeding success of the European Nightjar, Caprimulgus europaeus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Lowe

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Land managers often respond to declining numbers of target species by creating additional areas of habitat. If these habitats are also subject to human disturbance, then their efforts may be wasted. The European Nightjar (Caprimulgus europaeus is a ground-nesting bird that is listed as a species of European Conservation Concern. It appears to be susceptible to human disturbance during the breeding season. We examined habitat use and reproductive success over 10 years in a breeding population on 1335 ha of managed land in Nottinghamshire, England. The study site was divided into a heavily disturbed section and a less disturbed section of equal habitat availability, forming a natural long-term experiment. The site is open to the public, and visitor numbers approximately doubled during the study. We found that overall Nightjar density was significantly lower and there were significantly fewer breeding pairs in the heavily disturbed habitat compared with the less disturbed habitat. However, average breeding success per pair, in terms of eggs and fledglings produced, was not significantly different between the two sections across years. Our findings suggest that human recreational disturbance may drastically alter settlement patterns and nest site selection of arriving females in some migratory ground-nesting species and may reduce the utility of apparently suitable patches of remnant and created habitat. Land managers should bear this in mind when creating new areas of habitat that will also be accessible to the public. Our study also highlights the value of long-term population monitoring, which can detect trends that short-term studies may miss.

  17. Historical landscape elements in preserving steppic species - vegetation responses on micro-topography and human disturbances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deák, Balázs; Valkó, Orsolya; Török, Péter; Tóthmérész, Béla

    2017-04-01

    Land use changes of past centuries resulted in a considerable loss and isolation of grassland habitats worldwide which also led to a serious loss in ecosystem functions. In intensively used agricultural landscapes remnants of natural flora persisted only in small habitat islands embedded in a hostile matrix, which are inadequate for arable farming or construction. In the steppe zone of Eurasia burial mounds, so-called kurgans, have a great potential to preserve the natural flora and habitats and act as local biodiversity hotspots. Their special micro-topography and historical origin makes kurgans characteristic landscape elements of the steppe region. These features also result in a specific soil development and micro-climate, which makes kurgans especially adequate habitats for several steppe specialist plant species. Furthermore, they are proper objects for studying the effects of present and past human disturbances on the vegetation of semi-natural habitats. Exploration of the main factors driving biodiversity in isolated habitat fragments is crucial for understanding the ecological processes shaping their vegetation and for designing effective strategies for their protection. We surveyed the vegetation of 44 isolated kurgans in East-Hungary and studied the effects of habitat area, slope, recent disturbance, past destruction and the level of woody encroachment on the species richness and cover of grassland specialist and weedy species. We used model selection techniques and linear models for testing relevant factors affecting specialist species in grassland fragments. We found that the biodiversity conservation potential of kurgans is supported by their steep slopes, which provide adequate habitat conditions and micro-climate for steppic specialist plant species. By harbouring several grassland specialist species, kurgans have a great potential for preserving the natural species pool of even considerably altered agricultural landscapes, and can mitigate the

  18. Diversity loss with persistent human disturbance increases vulnerability to ecosystem collapse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacDougall, A S; McCann, K S; Gellner, G; Turkington, R

    2013-02-07

    Long-term and persistent human disturbances have simultaneously altered the stability and diversity of ecological systems, with disturbances directly reducing functional attributes such as invasion resistance, while eliminating the buffering effects of high species diversity. Theory predicts that this combination of environmental change and diversity loss increases the risk of abrupt and potentially irreversible ecosystem collapse, but long-term empirical evidence from natural systems is lacking. Here we demonstrate this relationship in a degraded but species-rich pyrogenic grassland in which the combined effects of fire suppression, invasion and trophic collapse have created a species-poor grassland that is highly productive, resilient to yearly climatic fluctuations, and resistant to invasion, but vulnerable to rapid collapse after the re-introduction of fire. We initially show how human disturbance has created a negative relationship between diversity and function, contrary to theoretical predictions. Fire prevention since the mid-nineteenth century is associated with the loss of plant species but it has stabilized high-yield annual production and invasion resistance, comparable to a managed high-yield low-diversity agricultural system. In managing for fire suppression, however, a hidden vulnerability to sudden environmental change emerges that is explained by the elimination of the buffering effects of high species diversity. With the re-introduction of fire, grasslands only persist in areas with remnant concentrations of native species, in which a range of rare and mostly functionally redundant plants proliferate after burning and prevent extensive invasion including a rapid conversion towards woodland. This research shows how biodiversity can be crucial for ecosystem stability despite appearing functionally insignificant beforehand, a relationship probably applicable to many ecosystems given the globally prevalent combination of intensive long-term land

  19. Disturbance Regimes Predictably Alter Diversity in an Ecologically Complex Bacterial System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sean M. Gibbons

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Diversity is often associated with the functional stability of ecological communities from microbes to macroorganisms. Understanding how diversity responds to environmental perturbations and the consequences of this relationship for ecosystem function are thus central challenges in microbial ecology. Unimodal diversity-disturbance relationships, in which maximum diversity occurs at intermediate levels of disturbance, have been predicted for ecosystems where life history tradeoffs separate organisms along a disturbance gradient. However, empirical support for such peaked relationships in macrosystems is mixed, and few studies have explored these relationships in microbial systems. Here we use complex microbial microcosm communities to systematically determine diversity-disturbance relationships over a range of disturbance regimes. We observed a reproducible switch between community states, which gave rise to transient diversity maxima when community states were forced to mix. Communities showed reduced compositional stability when diversity was highest. To further explore these dynamics, we formulated a simple model that reveals specific regimes under which diversity maxima are stable. Together, our results show how both unimodal and non-unimodal diversity-disturbance relationships can be observed as a system switches between two distinct microbial community states; this process likely occurs across a wide range of spatially and temporally heterogeneous microbial ecosystems.

  20. The history of human disturbance in forest ecosystems of southern Indiana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael A. Jenkins

    2013-01-01

    The forests of southern Indiana have been shaped and defined by anthropogenic disturbance. Native Americans influenced composition and structure through land clearing and burning, but the scale and rate of human disturbance intensified with European settlement. Sustained settlement led to the loss of forest land to agriculture and livestock grazing. Forests were also...

  1. Catchment controls and human disturbances on the geomorphology of small Mediterranean estuarine systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estrany, Joan; Grimalt, Miquel

    2014-10-01

    terraces and transverse walls are involved in the generation of catastrophic flood events. Additionally, the lagoons were altered considerably by human intervention for flood control and to allow for an increased amount of human activities within the surrounding areas, although the high recurrence of catastrophic flood events causes a persistent difficulty in the human battle to dominate these ecosystems. Therefore, the area occupied by lagoons increased between 1956 and the present time from 31,981 m2 to 63,802 m2 because of the high recurrence of catastrophic flood events. Furthermore, tourism demand and a social conservation consciousness have promoted restoration and preservation since the 1990s. This study has improved the geomorphological knowledge of small Mediterranean estuaries affected by human disturbances in the high-energy environment found in Mallorca.

  2. Edge disturbance drives liana abundance increase and alteration of liana-host tree interactions in tropical forest fragments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Mason J; Edwards, Will; Magrach, Ainhoa; Alamgir, Mohammed; Porolak, Gabriel; Mohandass, D; Laurance, William F

    2018-04-01

    Closed-canopy forests are being rapidly fragmented across much of the tropical world. Determining the impacts of fragmentation on ecological processes enables better forest management and improves species-conservation outcomes. Lianas are an integral part of tropical forests but can have detrimental and potentially complex interactions with their host trees. These effects can include reduced tree growth and fecundity, elevated tree mortality, alterations in tree-species composition, degradation of forest succession, and a substantial decline in forest carbon storage. We examined the individual impacts of fragmentation and edge effects (0-100-m transect from edge to forest interior) on the liana community and liana-host tree interactions in rainforests of the Atherton Tableland in north Queensland, Australia. We compared the liana and tree community, the traits of liana-infested trees, and determinants of the rates of tree infestation within five forest fragments (23-58 ha in area) and five nearby intact-forest sites. Fragmented forests experienced considerable disturbance-induced degradation at their edges, resulting in a significant increase in liana abundance. This effect penetrated to significantly greater depths in forest fragments than in intact forests. The composition of the liana community in terms of climbing guilds was significantly different between fragmented and intact forests, likely because forest edges had more small-sized trees favoring particular liana guilds which preferentially use these for climbing trellises. Sites that had higher liana abundances also exhibited higher infestation rates of trees, as did sites with the largest lianas. However, large lianas were associated with low-disturbance forest sites. Our study shows that edge disturbance of forest fragments significantly altered the abundance and community composition of lianas and their ecological relationships with trees, with liana impacts on trees being elevated in fragments relative

  3. Reactions of chamois to human disturbance in Berchtesgaden National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bögel, R.

    2002-12-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to test whether the source and frequence of disturbance result in different behavioural responses of Chamois and if practical management guidelines can be drawn from these findings. The results clearly indicate that type and frequency of the disturbance have a strong influence on the behavioural response and that the disturbance tolerance varies with season, time of the day, sex and group size. Disturbances from flying resulted in a much stronger response than disturbances from the ground, and the response increased with velocity and/or noise level of the disturbance source. In areas with frequent disturbances the behavioural response was reduced when compared with remote areas, indicating habituation effects. While distance at first reaction and flight distance varied with disturbance intensity, the length of the flight path was not influenced by the disturbance type and frequency. Habitat use was also affected by disturbances: postdisturbance habitat types were mainly rocks and forests indicating a shift in habitat selection towards inaccessible habitat types or habitat types with good cover.

    [fr]
    Chez les chamois, nous avons étudié l’influence des différentes perturbations de diverses fréquences sur le comportement et nous nous sommes demandés si les résultats obtenus pouvaient orienter la gestion des populations. En effet, aussi bien le type que la fréquence de la perturbation ont influencé de manière significative le comportement. De plus, la tolérance aux perturbations varie avec la saison, l'heure du jour, le sexe et la taille du groupe. Les perturbations produites par des engins aériens ont provoqué une réponse beaucoup plus forte que celles provenant du terrain; la réponse étant augmentée avec la vitesse ou le degré du bruit de la source de perturbation. Là où les perturbations étaient fréquentes, la réponse se voyait réduite par rapport a des territoires

  4. Maternal effects alter progeny's response to disturbance and nutrients in two Plantago species

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Latzel, Vít; Klimešová, Jitka; Hájek, Tomáš; Gómez, S.; Šmilauer, P.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 119, č. 11 (2010), s. 1700-1710 ISSN 0030-1299 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA526/09/0963; GA ČR GD206/08/H044; GA ČR GPP505/10/P173 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : Maternal effec * disturbance * nutrients Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.393, year: 2010

  5. Long term prevention of disturbance induces the collapse of a dominant species without altering ecosystem function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Qiang; Wu, Honghui; Wang, Zhengwen; Flynn, Dan F B; Yang, Hao; Lü, Fumei; Smith, Melinda; Han, Xingguo

    2015-09-21

    Limitation of disturbances, such as grazing and fire, is a key tool for nature reserve management and ecological restoration. While the role of these disturbances in shaping ecosystem structure and functioning has been intensively studied, less is known about the consequences of long-term prevention of grazing and fire. Based on a 31-year study, we show that relative biomass of the dominant grass, Leymus chinensis, of grasslands in northern China declined dramatically, but only after 21 years of exclusion of fire and grazing. However, aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) did not decline accordingly due to compensatory responses of several subdominant grass species. The decline in dominance of L. chinensis was not related to gradually changing climate during the same period, whereas experimentally imposed litter removal (simulating fire), mowing (simulating grazing), fire and moderate grazing enhanced dominance of L. chinensis significantly. Thus, our findings show that disturbances can be critical to maintain the dominance of key grass species in semiarid grassland, but that the collapse of a dominant species does not necessarily result in significant change in ANPP if there are species in the community capable of compensating for loss of a dominant.

  6. Identifying community thresholds for lotic benthic diatoms in response to human disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Tao; Tang, Ting; Tan, Lu; Gu, Yuan; Jiang, Wanxiang; Cai, Qinghua

    2017-06-23

    Although human disturbance indirectly influences lotic assemblages through modifying physical and chemical conditions, identifying thresholds of human disturbance would provide direct evidence for preventing anthropogenic degradation of biological conditions. In the present study, we used data obtained from tributaries of the Three Gorges Reservoir in China to detect effects of human disturbance on streams and to identify disturbance thresholds for benthic diatoms. Diatom species composition was significantly affected by three in-stream stressors including TP, TN and pH. Diatoms were also influenced by watershed % farmland and natural environmental variables. Considering three in-stream stressors, TP was positively influenced by % farmland and % impervious surface area (ISA). In contrast, TN and pH were principally affected by natural environmental variables. Among measured natural environmental variables, average annual air temperature, average annual precipitation, and topsoil % CaCO 3 , % gravel, and total exchangeable bases had significant effects on study streams. When effects of natural variables were accounted for, substantial compositional changes in diatoms occurred when farmland or ISA land use exceeded 25% or 0.3%, respectively. Our study demonstrated the rationale for identifying thresholds of human disturbance for lotic assemblages and addressed the importance of accounting for effects of natural factors for accurate disturbance thresholds.

  7. A meta-analysis of human disturbance impacts on Antarctic wildlife.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coetzee, Bernard W T; Chown, Steven L

    2016-08-01

    Evidence-based assessments are increasingly recognized as the best-practice approach to determine appropriate conservation interventions, but such assessments of the impact of human disturbance on wildlife are rare. Human disturbance comprises anthropogenic activities that are typically non-lethal, but may cause short- and/or longer-term stress and fitness responses in wildlife. Expanding human activity in the Antarctic region is of particular concern because it increases the scope and potential for increased human disturbance to wildlife in a region that is often thought of as relatively untouched by anthropogenic influences. Here, we use a meta-analytical approach to synthesise research on human disturbance to wildlife over the last three decades in the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic region. We combine data from 62 studies across 21 species on the behavioural, physiological and population responses of wildlife to pedestrian, vehicle and research disturbances. The overall effect size indicated a small, albeit statistically significant negative effect of disturbance (-0.39; 95% CI: -0.60 to -0.18). Negative effects were found for both physiological and population responses, but no evidence was found for a significant impact on wildlife behavioural responses. Negative effects were found across pedestrian, vehicle and research disturbances. Significant and high among-study heterogeneity was found in both disturbance and response sub-groups. Among species, it remains unclear to what extent different forms of disturbance translate into negative population responses. Most current guidelines to limit wildlife disturbance impacts in Antarctica recommend that approaches be tailored to animal behavioural cues, but our work demonstrates that behavioural changes do not necessarily reflect more cryptic, and more deleterious impacts, such as changes in physiology. In consequence, we recommend that pedestrian approach guidelines in the Antarctic region be revisited. Due to the high

  8. Capturing community context of human response to forest disturbance by insects: a multi-method assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hua Qin; Courtney G. Flint

    2010-01-01

    The socioeconomic and environmental features of local places (community context) influence the relationship between humans and their physical environment. In times of environmental disturbance, this community context is expected to influence human perceptual and behavioral responses. Residents from nine Colorado communities experiencing a large outbreak of mountain...

  9. Using Landsat time series for characterizing forest disturbance dynamics in the coupled human and natural systems of Central Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senf, Cornelius; Pflugmacher, Dirk; Hostert, Patrick; Seidl, Rupert

    2017-08-01

    Remote sensing is a key information source for improving the spatiotemporal understanding of forest ecosystem dynamics. Yet, the mapping and attribution of forest change remains challenging, particularly in areas where a number of interacting disturbance agents simultaneously affect forest development. The forest ecosystems of Central Europe are coupled human and natural systems, with natural and human disturbances affecting forests both individually and in combination. To better understand the complex forest disturbance dynamics in such systems, we utilize 32-year Landsat time series to map forest disturbances in five sites across Austria, the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland, and Slovakia. All sites consisted of a National Park and the surrounding forests, reflecting three management zones of different levels of human influence (managed, protected, strictly protected). This allowed for a comparison of spectral, temporal, and spatial disturbance patterns across a gradient from natural to coupled human and natural disturbances. Disturbance maps achieved overall accuracies ranging from 81% to 93%. Disturbance patches were generally small, with 95% of the disturbances being smaller than 10 ha. Disturbance rates ranged from 0.29% yr -1 to 0.95% yr -1 , and differed substantially among management zones and study sites. Natural disturbances in strictly protected areas were longer in duration (median of 8 years) and slightly less variable in magnitude compared to human-dominated disturbances in managed forests (median duration of 1 year). However, temporal dynamics between natural and human-dominated disturbances showed strong synchrony, suggesting that disturbance peaks are driven by natural events affecting managed and unmanaged areas simultaneously. Our study demonstrates the potential of remote sensing for mapping forest disturbances in coupled human and natural systems, such as the forests of Central Europe. Yet, we also highlight the complexity of such systems in

  10. Conspecific disturbance contributes to altered hibernation patterns in bats with white-nose syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, James M; Warnecke, Lisa; Wilcox, Alana; Baloun, Dylan; Bollinger, Trent K; Misra, Vikram; Willis, Craig K R

    2015-03-01

    The emerging wildlife disease white-nose syndrome (WNS) affects both physiology and behaviour of hibernating bats. Infection with the fungal pathogen Pseudogymnoascus destructans (Pd), the first pathogen known to target torpid animals, causes an increase in arousal frequency during hibernation, and therefore premature depletion of energy stores. Infected bats also show a dramatic decrease in clustering behaviour over the winter. To investigate the interaction between disease progression and torpor expression we quantified physiological (i.e., timing of arousal, rewarming rate) and behavioural (i.e., arousal synchronisation, clustering) aspects of rewarming events over four months in little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus) experimentally inoculated with Pd. We tested two competing hypotheses: 1) Bats adjust arousal physiology adaptively to help compensate for an increase in energetically expensive arousals. This hypothesis predicts that infected bats should increase synchronisation of arousals with colony mates to benefit from social thermoregulation and/or that solitary bats will exhibit faster rewarming rates than clustered individuals because rewarming costs fall as rewarming rate increases. 2) As for the increase in arousal frequency, changes in arousal physiology and clustering behaviour are maladaptive consequences of infection. This hypothesis predicts no effect of infection or clustering behaviour on rewarming rate and that disturbance by normothermic bats contributes to the overall increase in arousal frequency. We found that arousals of infected bats became more synchronised than those of controls as hibernation progressed but the pattern was not consistent with social thermoregulation. When a bat rewarmed from torpor, it was often followed in sequence by up to seven other bats in an arousal "cascade". Moreover, rewarming rate did not differ between infected and uninfected bats, was not affected by clustering and did not change over time. Our results support

  11. Statistical methods for analysing responses of wildlife to human disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haiganoush K. Preisler; Alan A. Ager; Michael J. Wisdom

    2006-01-01

    1. Off-road recreation is increasing rapidly in many areas of the world, and effects on wildlife can be highly detrimental. Consequently, we have developed methods for studying wildlife responses to off-road recreation with the use of new technologies that allow frequent and accurate monitoring of human-wildlife interactions. To illustrate these methods, we studied the...

  12. Managing human disturbance: factors influencing flight-initiation ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    We tested how FID varied with group size, proximity to vegetation acting as protective cover, levels of human use, and survival rate, and whether these relationships varied by species. We collected 504 FIDs for seven bird species in Amurum Forest Reserve and its surrounding habitats (Jos, Nigeria). The FID was lower in ...

  13. Human-caused Disturbance Stimuli as a Form of Predation Risk

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alejandro Frid

    2002-06-01

    Full Text Available A growing number of studies quantify the impact of nonlethal human disturbance on the behavior and reproductive success of animals. Athough many are well designed and analytically sophisticated, most lack a theoretical framework for making predictions and for understanding why particular responses occur. Behavioral ecologists have recently begun to fill this theoretical vacuum by applying economic models of antipredator behavior to disturbance studies. In this emerging paradigm, predation and nonlethal disturbance stimuli create similar trade-offs between avoiding perceived risk and other fitness-enhancing activities, such as feeding, parental care, or mating. A vast literature supports the hypothesis that antipredator behavior has a cost to other activities, and that this trade-off is optimized when investment in antipredator behavior tracks short-term changes in predation risk. Prey have evolved antipredator responses to generalized threatening stimuli, such as loud noises and rapidly approaching objects. Thus, when encountering disturbance stimuli ranging from the dramatic, low-flying helicopter to the quiet wildlife photographer, animal responses are likely to follow the same economic principles used by prey encountering predators. Some authors have argued that, similar to predation risk, disturbance stimuli can indirectly affect fitness and population dynamics via the energetic and lost opportunity costs of risk avoidance. We elaborate on this argument by discussing why, from an evolutionary perspective, disturbance stimuli should be analogous to predation risk. We then consider disturbance effects on the behavior of individuals - vigilance, fleeing, habitat selection, mating displays, and parental investment - as well as indirect effects on populations and communities. A wider application of predation risk theory to disturbance studies should increase the generality of predictions and make mitigation more effective without over

  14. Insect avoidance may override human disturbances in reindeer habitat selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Skarin

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Habitat selection of semi-domesticated reindeer (Rangifer tarandus tarandus was investigated through faecal pellet- group counts and by direct observations of reindeer from helicopter in the Långfjället area in Idre reindeer herding district (62˚10’N and in Mittådalen reindeer herding district (62˚50’N, aerial observations only. Reindeer pellets were found to be most abundant in habitats at high altitudes, and in some vegetation types. Pellet-group densities tended to be higher near the tourist trails, which often follow higher altitudes in the terrain. The aerial surveys showed that the reindeer moved towards higher altitudes when the wind speed was low and the temperature was high both in June and July. In June they moved towards lower regions when temperature was low and the wind speed was strong. The conclusion is that the reindeer use Långfjället to escape insect harassment and warm weather, even though disturbance by tourism sometimes is high.Abstract in Swedish / Sammanfattning:Habitatval hos tamren (Rangifer tarandus tarandus undersöktes genom att göra en spillningsinventering och genom att göra flygobservationer från helikopter. Studien gjordes på Långfjället (62˚10’N i Idre nya sameby och i Mittådalens samebys sommarbetesområde (62˚50’N, endast flygobservationer. På Långfjället finns det vandringsleder som är frekventerade av vandrare från juni månad fram till september. Spillningen visade att renarna föredrog höjderna i området samt en del av vegetationstyperna. Det var också mer spillning närmare vandringslederna. Detta kan förklaras av att vandringslederna följer höjderna i terrängen. Flyginventeringarna under både juni och juli visade att renarna rörde sig mot högre terräng när det var varmt och lugnt väder. I juni rörde dom sig också i lägre terräng när det var stark vind och kallt väder. Slutsatsen är att renarna väljer att vistas i högre terräng för att undvika st

  15. Quantifying human disturbance in watersheds: Variable selection and performance of a GIS-based disturbance index for predicting the biological condition of perennial streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falcone, James A.; Carlisle, Daren M.; Weber, Lisa C.

    2010-01-01

    Characterizing the relative severity of human disturbance in watersheds is often part of stream assessments and is frequently done with the aid of Geographic Information System (GIS)-derived data. However, the choice of variables and how they are used to quantify disturbance are often subjective. In this study, we developed a number of disturbance indices by testing sets of variables, scoring methods, and weightings of 33 potential disturbance factors derived from readily available GIS data. The indices were calibrated using 770 watersheds located in the western United States for which the severity of disturbance had previously been classified from detailed local data by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program (EMAP). The indices were calibrated by determining which variable or variable combinations and aggregation method best differentiated between least- and most-disturbed sites. Indices composed of several variables performed better than any individual variable, and best results came from a threshold method of scoring using six uncorrelated variables: housing unit density, road density, pesticide application, dam storage, land cover along a mainstem buffer, and distance to nearest canal/pipeline. The final index was validated with 192 withheld watersheds and correctly classified about two-thirds (68%) of least- and most-disturbed sites. These results provide information about the potential for using a disturbance index as a screening tool for a priori ranking of watersheds at a regional/national scale, and which landscape variables and methods of combination may be most helpful in doing so.

  16. Human disturbance influences reproductive success and growth rate in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susannah S French

    Full Text Available The environment is currently undergoing changes at both global (e.g., climate change and local (e.g., tourism, pollution, habitat modification scales that have the capacity to affect the viability of animal and plant populations. Many of these changes, such as human disturbance, have an anthropogenic origin and therefore may be mitigated by management action. To do so requires an understanding of the impact of human activities and changing environmental conditions on population dynamics. We investigated the influence of human activity on important life history parameters (reproductive rate, and body condition, and growth rate of neonate pups for California sea lions (Zalophus californianus in the Gulf of California, Mexico. Increased human presence was associated with lower reproductive rates, which translated into reduced long-term population growth rates and suggested that human activities are a disturbance that could lead to population declines. We also observed higher body growth rates in pups with increased exposure to humans. Increased growth rates in pups may reflect a density dependent response to declining reproductive rates (e.g., decreased competition for resources. Our results highlight the potentially complex changes in life history parameters that may result from human disturbance, and their implication for population dynamics. We recommend careful monitoring of human activities in the Gulf of California and emphasize the importance of management strategies that explicitly consider the potential impact of human activities such as ecotourism on vertebrate populations.

  17. Human disturbance is a major determinant of wildlife distribution in Himalayan midhill landscapes of Nepal

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Paudel, Prakash K.; Kindlmann, Pavel

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 15, č. 3 (2012), s. 283-293 ISSN 1367-9430 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) ED1.1.00/02.0073 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : human disturbance * midhills * wildlife conservation * mountain landscape * conservation challenges Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 2.692, year: 2012

  18. Using spontaneous succession for restoration of human-disturbed habitats: experience from Central Europe

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Prach, Karel; Pyšek, Petr

    2001-01-01

    Roč. 17, - (2001), s. 55-62 ISSN 0925-8574 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/94/0395; GA ČR GA206/97/0077 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6005908 Keywords : vegetation * succession * human-disturbed habitats Subject RIV: DO - Wilderness Conservation Impact factor: 0.601, year: 2001

  19. Heart rate responses provide an objective evaluation of human disturbance stimuli in breeding birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellenberg, Ursula; Mattern, Thomas; Seddon, Philip J

    2013-01-01

    Intuition is a poor guide for evaluating the effects of human disturbance on wildlife. Using the endangered Yellow-eyed penguin, Megadyptes antipodes, as an example, we show that heart rate responses provide an objective tool to evaluate human disturbance stimuli and encourage the wider use of this simple and low-impact approach. Yellow-eyed penguins are a flagship species for New Zealand's wildlife tourism; however, unregulated visitor access has recently been associated with reduced breeding success and lower first year survival. We measured heart rate responses of Yellow-eyed penguins via artificial eggs to evaluate a range of human stimuli regularly occurring at their breeding sites. We found the duration of a stimulus to be the most important factor, with elevated heart rate being sustained while a person remained within sight. Human activity was the next important component; a simulated wildlife photographer, crawling slowly around during his stay, elicited a significantly higher heart rate response than an entirely motionless human spending the same time at the same distance. Stimuli we subjectively might perceive as low impact, such as the careful approach of a 'wildlife photographer', resulted in a stronger response than a routine nest-check that involved lifting a bird up to view nest contents. A single, slow-moving human spending 20 min within 2 m from the nest may provoke a response comparable to that of 10 min handling a bird for logger deployment. To reduce cumulative impact of disturbance, any human presence in the proximity of Yellow-eyed penguins needs to be kept at a minimum. Our results highlight the need for objective quantification of the effects of human disturbance in order to provide a sound basis for guidelines to manage human activity around breeding birds.

  20. Human error as a source of disturbances in Swedish nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sokolowski, E.

    1985-01-01

    Events involving human errors at the Swedish nuclear power plants are registered and periodically analyzed. The philosophy behind the scheme for data collection and analysis is discussed. Human errors cause about 10% of the disturbances registered. Only a small part of these errors are committed by operators in the control room. These and other findings differ from those in other countries. Possible reasons are put forward

  1. Coping with continuous human disturbance in the wild: insights from penguin heart rate response to various stressors.

    OpenAIRE

    Viblanc, V.A.; Smith, A.D.; Gineste, B.; Groscolas, R.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Background A central question for ecologists is the extent to which anthropogenic disturbances (e.g. tourism) might impact wildlife and affect the systems under study. From a research perspective, identifying the effects of human disturbance caused by research-related activities is crucial in order to understand and account for potential biases and derive appropriate conclusions from the data. Results Here, we document a case of biological adjustment to chronic human disturbance in a...

  2. Disturbance Alters the Relative Importance of Topographic and Biogeochemical Controls on Microbial Activity in Temperate Montane Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca A. Lybrand

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Fire and pathogen-induced tree mortality are the two dominant forms of disturbance in Western U.S. montane forests. We investigated the consequences of both disturbance types on the controls of microbial activity in soils from 56 plots across a topographic gradient one year after the 2012 High Park wildfire in Colorado. Topsoil biogeochemistry, soil CO2 efflux, potential exoenzyme activities, and microbial biomass were quantified in plots that experienced fire disturbance, beetle disturbance, or both fire and beetle disturbance, and in plots where there was no recent evidence of disturbance. Soil CO2 efflux, N-, and P-degrading exoenzyme activities in undisturbed plots were positively correlated with soil moisture, estimated from a topographic wetness index; coefficient of determinations ranged from 0.5 to 0.65. Conversely, the same estimates of microbial activities from fire-disturbed and beetle-disturbed soils showed little correspondence to topographically inferred wetness, but demonstrated mostly negative relationships with soil pH (fire only and mostly positive relationships with DOC/TDN (dissolved organic carbon/total dissolved nitrogen ratios for both disturbance types. The coefficient of determination for regressions of microbial activity with soil pH and DOC/TDN reached 0.8 and 0.63 in fire- and beetle-disturbed forests, respectively. Drivers of soil microbial activity change as a function of disturbance type, suggesting simple mathematical models are insufficient in capturing the impact of disturbance in forests.

  3. Behavioural strategies towards human disturbances explain individual performance in woodland caribou.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leclerc, Martin; Dussault, Christian; St-Laurent, Martin-Hugues

    2014-09-01

    Behavioural strategies may have important fitness, ecological and evolutionary consequences. In woodland caribou, human disturbances are associated with higher predation risk. Between 2004 and 2011, we investigated if habitat selection strategies of female caribou towards disturbances influenced their calf's survival in managed boreal forest with varying intensities of human disturbances. Calf survival was 53% and 43% after 30 and 90 days following birth, respectively, and 52% of calves that died were killed by black bear. The probability that a female lose its calf to predation was not influenced by habitat composition of her annual home range, but decreased with an increase in proportion of open lichen woodland within her calving home range. At the local scale, females that did not lose their calf displayed stronger avoidance of high road density areas than females that lost their calf to predation. Further, females that lost their calf to predation and that had a low proportion of ≤5-year-old cutovers within their calving home range were mostly observed in areas where these young cutovers were locally absent. Also, females that lost their calf to predation and that had a high proportion of ≤5-year-old cutovers within their calving home range were mostly observed in areas with a high local density of ≤5-year-old cutovers. Our study demonstrates that we have to account for human-induced disturbances at both local and regional scales in order to further enhance effective caribou management plans. We demonstrate that disturbances not only impact spatial distribution of individuals, but also their reproductive success.

  4. Butterfly community assemblages in relation to human disturbance in a tropical upland forest in Ghana, and implications for conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick Addo-Fordjour

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The present study determined butterfly diversity, species composition and abundance in different forests of varying human disturbance intensities in the Atewa Range Forest Reserve, Ghana (i.e. non-disturbed, moderately disturbed and heavily disturbed forests. Vegetation characteristics and butterflies were sampled within ten 50 m × 50 m plots in each forest type. The study revealed that butterfly Shannon diversity index was similar in the non-disturbed and moderately disturbed forests although it was significantly lower in the heavily disturbed forest. Butterfly abundance differed significantly among all the forest types. Significant relationships were detected between some vegetation characteristics, and butterfly diversity and abundance (P<0.001. Using Non-metric Multidimensional Scaling (NMDS and cluster analysis, three main butterfly assemblages were identified on the basis of species composition, with each one in a particular forest type. Furthermore, butterfly species composition differed significantly among the forest types (ANOSIM; P<0.0001. The intermediate form of human disturbance in the moderately disturbed forest maintained butterfly diversity, suggesting that management efforts aimed at butterfly conservation should be geared towards protecting forests from excessive human disturbance; selective logging is recommended.

  5. Chronic human disturbance affects plant trait distribution in a seasonally dry tropical forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sfair, Julia C.; de Bello, Francesco; de França, Thaysa Q.; Baldauf, Cristina; Tabarelli, Marcelo

    2018-02-01

    The effects of human disturbance on biodiversity can be mediated by environmental conditions, such as water availability, climate and nutrients. In general, disturbed, dry or nutrient-depleted soils areas tend to have lower taxonomic diversity. However, little is known about how these environmental conditions affect functional composition and intraspecific variability in tropical dry forests. We studied a seasonally dry tropical forest (SDTF) under chronic anthropogenic disturbance (CAD) along rainfall and soil nutrient gradients to understand how these factors influence the taxonomic and functional composition. Specifically we evaluated two aspects of CAD, wood extraction and livestock pressure (goat and cattle grazing), along soil fertility and rainfall gradients on shrub and tree traits, considering species turnover and intraspecific variability. In addition, we also tested how the traits of eight populations of the most frequent species are affected by wood extraction, livestock pressure, rainfall and soil fertility. In general, although CAD and environmental gradients affected each trait of the most widespread species differently, the most abundant species also had a greater variation of traits. Considering species turnover, wood extraction is associated with species with a smaller leaf area and lower investment in leaf mass, probably due to the indirect effects of this disturbance type on the vegetation, i.e. the removal of branches and woody debris clears the vegetation, favouring species that minimize water loss. Livestock pressure, on the other hand, affected intraspecific variation: the herbivory caused by goats and cattle promoted individuals which invest more in wood density and leaf mass. In this case, the change of functional composition observed is a direct effect of the disturbance, such as the decrease of palatable plant abundance by goat and cattle herbivory. In synthesis, CAD, rainfall and soil fertility can affect trait distribution at community

  6. Human disturbances and predation on artificial ground nests across an urban gradient

    OpenAIRE

    Bocz, R.; Szép, D.; Witz, D.; Ronczyk, L.; Kurucz, K.; Purger, J. J.

    2017-01-01

    In our study with artificial nests we observed that the absence of ground nesting bird species in the city centre and in residential districts was due to disturbance by humans and domestic animals (dogs and cats) rather than to predation. Furthermore, predation pressure was higher in the outskirts of the city due to the greater number of natural predators. Our results suggest that planning and creating undisturbed areas could increase the chances of ground nesting birds settling and breeding ...

  7. Demographics of an ornate box turtle population experiencing minimal human-induced disturbances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Converse, S.J.; Iverson, J.B.; Savidge, J.A.

    2005-01-01

    Human-induced disturbances may threaten the viability of many turtle populations, including populations of North American box turtles. Evaluation of the potential impacts of these disturbances can be aided by long-term studies of populations subject to minimal human activity. In such a population of ornate box turtles (Terrapene ornata ornata) in western Nebraska, we examined survival rates and population growth rates from 1981-2000 based on mark-recapture data. The average annual apparent survival rate of adult males was 0.883 (SE = 0.021) and of adult females was 0.932 (SE = 0.014). Minimum winter temperature was the best of five climate variables as a predictor of adult survival. Survival rates were highest in years with low minimum winter temperatures, suggesting that global warming may result in declining survival. We estimated an average adult population growth rate (????) of 1.006 (SE = 0.065), with an estimated temporal process variance (????2) of 0.029 (95% CI = 0.005-0.176). Stochastic simulations suggest that this mean and temporal process variance would result in a 58% probability of a population decrease over a 20-year period. This research provides evidence that, unless unknown density-dependent mechanisms are operating in the adult age class, significant human disturbances, such as commercial harvest or turtle mortality on roads, represent a potential risk to box turtle populations. ?? 2005 by the Ecological Society of America.

  8. Spindle disturbances in human-hamster hybrid (AL) cells induced by mobile communication frequency range signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schrader, Thorsten; Münter, Klaus; Kleine-Ostmann, Thomas; Schmid, Ernst

    2008-12-01

    The production of spindle disturbances in FC2 cells, a human-hamster hybrid (A(L)) cell line, by non-ionizing radiation was studied using an electromagnetic field with a field strength of 90 V/m at a frequency of 835 MHz. Due to the given experimental conditions slide flask cultures were exposed at room temperature in a microTEM (transversal electromagnetic field) cell, which allows optimal experimental conditions for small samples of biological material. Numerical calculations suggest that specific absorption rates of up to 60 mW/kg are reached for maximum field exposure. All exposure field parameters--either measured or calculable--are precisely defined and, for the first time, traceable to the standards of the SI system of physical units. Compared with co-incident negative controls, the results of two independently performed experiments suggest that exposure periods of time from 0.5 to 2 h with an electric field strength of 90 V/m are spindle acting agents as predominately indicated by the appearance of spindle disturbances at the ana- and telophase stages (especially lagging and non-disjunction of single chromosomes) of cell divisions. The spindle disturbances do not change the fraction of mitotic cells with increasing exposure time up to 2 h. Due to the applied experimental conditions an influence of temperature as a confounder parameter for spindle disturbances can be excluded.

  9. Altered structural development and accelerated succession from intermediate-scale wind disturbance in Quercus stands on the Cumberland Plateau, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephen D White; Justin L. Hart; Callie J. Schweitzer; Daniel C. Dey

    2015-01-01

    Natural disturbances play important roles in shaping the structure and composition of all forest ecosystems and can be used to inform silvicultural practices. Canopy disturbances are often classified along a gradient ranging from highly localized, gap-scale events to stand-replacing events. Wind storms such as downbursts, derechos, and low intensity tornadoes typically...

  10. Human Disturbance during Early Life Impairs Nestling Growth in Birds Inhabiting a Nature Recreation Area.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remacha, Carolina; Delgado, Juan Antonio; Bulaic, Mateja; Pérez-Tris, Javier

    2016-01-01

    Nature recreation conflicts with conservation, but its impacts on wildlife are not fully understood. Where recreation is not regulated, visitors to natural areas may gather in large numbers on weekends and holidays. This may increase variance in fitness in wild populations, if individuals whose critical life cycle stages coincide with periods of high human disturbance are at a disadvantage. We studied nestling development of blue tits (Cyanistes caeruleus) in a natural area where recreation activities intensify during weekends and other public holidays at picnic and leisure facilities, but not in the surrounding woods. In nests located near recreation facilities, blue tit nestlings that hatched during holidays developed slowly, and fledged with low body mass and poor body condition. However, nestlings that hatched outside of holidays and weekends in these nest boxes developed normally, eventually attaining similar phenotypes as those hatching in the surrounding woods. Within-brood variance in body mass was also higher in broods that began growing during holidays in disturbed areas. Our results show that early disturbance events may have negative consequences for wild birds if they overlap with critical stages of development, unveiling otherwise cryptic impacts of human activities. These new findings may help managers better regulate nature recreation.

  11. Human Disturbance during Early Life Impairs Nestling Growth in Birds Inhabiting a Nature Recreation Area.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolina Remacha

    Full Text Available Nature recreation conflicts with conservation, but its impacts on wildlife are not fully understood. Where recreation is not regulated, visitors to natural areas may gather in large numbers on weekends and holidays. This may increase variance in fitness in wild populations, if individuals whose critical life cycle stages coincide with periods of high human disturbance are at a disadvantage. We studied nestling development of blue tits (Cyanistes caeruleus in a natural area where recreation activities intensify during weekends and other public holidays at picnic and leisure facilities, but not in the surrounding woods. In nests located near recreation facilities, blue tit nestlings that hatched during holidays developed slowly, and fledged with low body mass and poor body condition. However, nestlings that hatched outside of holidays and weekends in these nest boxes developed normally, eventually attaining similar phenotypes as those hatching in the surrounding woods. Within-brood variance in body mass was also higher in broods that began growing during holidays in disturbed areas. Our results show that early disturbance events may have negative consequences for wild birds if they overlap with critical stages of development, unveiling otherwise cryptic impacts of human activities. These new findings may help managers better regulate nature recreation.

  12. Solent Disturbance and Mitigation Project Phase II: Predicting the impact of human disturbance on overwintering birds in the Solent.

    OpenAIRE

    Stillman, Richard A.; West, Andrew D.; Clarke, Ralph T.; Liley, D.

    2012-01-01

    The Solent coastline provides feeding grounds for internationally protected populations of overwintering waders and wildfowl, and is also extensively used for recreation. In response to concerns over the impact of recreational pressure on birds within protected areas in the Solent, the Solent Forum initiated the Solent Disturbance and Mitigation Project to determine visitor access patterns around the coast and how their activities may influence the birds. The project has been divided into two...

  13. Human disturbances on coral reefs in Sri Lanka: A case study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oehman, M C; Linden, O [Stockholm Univ. (Sweden). Dept. of Zoology; Rajasuriya, A [NARA, Crow Island, Colombo (Sri Lanka)

    1993-01-01

    The degradation of coral reefs in Sri Lanka has increased substantially over the last decades. Human activities causing this degradation include: mining for lime production, sewage discharges, discharges of oil and other pollutants in connection with shipping and port activities, destructive fishing practices, land and mangrove destruction, tourism and the collecting of fauna such as fish, shells and corals. In this study, three adjacent coral reefs; Bar Reef, Talawila Reef, and Kandakuliya Reef, which are widely scattered patch reefs off Kalpitiya Peninsula, northwestern Sri Lanka, were surveyed and compared in terms of their fish and coral diversity and abundance as well as human and natural disturbances. Information was gathered by snorkeling in visual overview surveys and by scuba diving in detailed transect surveys. When each reef was ranked according to the extent of live coral cover, and chaetodontid diversity, the results indicated that Bar Reef was in excellent condition, Talawila Reef was intermediate, and Kandakuliya Reef was in poor condition. The diversity of coral genera, the topographic relief and the proportion of coral rubble, did not follow the same pattern. The number of coral genera found was 49, while 283 fish species belonging to 51 families were recorded. Human disturbance factors on the reefs were found to be net fishing, boat anchoring and ornamental fish collection for the aquarium trade. Bottom.set nylon nets in particular were found to have a very destructive impact on the bottom fauna. 33 refs, 7 figs, 1 tab

  14. Human disturbances and predation on artificial ground nests across an urban gradient

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bocz, R.

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available In our study with artificial nests we observed that the absence of ground nesting bird species in the city centre and in residential districts was due to disturbance by humans and domestic animals (dogs and cats rather than to predation. Furthermore, predation pressure was higher in the outskirts of the city due to the greater number of natural predators. Our results suggest that planning and creating undisturbed areas could increase the chances of ground nesting birds settling and breeding in human–dominated landscapes.

  15. Coping with continuous human disturbance in the wild: insights from penguin heart rate response to various stressors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viblanc, Vincent A; Smith, Andrew D; Gineste, Benoit; Groscolas, René

    2012-07-11

    A central question for ecologists is the extent to which anthropogenic disturbances (e.g. tourism) might impact wildlife and affect the systems under study. From a research perspective, identifying the effects of human disturbance caused by research-related activities is crucial in order to understand and account for potential biases and derive appropriate conclusions from the data. Here, we document a case of biological adjustment to chronic human disturbance in a colonial seabird, the king penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus), breeding on remote and protected islands of the Southern ocean. Using heart rate (HR) as a measure of the stress response, we show that, in a colony with areas exposed to the continuous presence of humans (including scientists) for over 50 years, penguins have adjusted to human disturbance and habituated to certain, but not all, types of stressors. When compared to birds breeding in relatively undisturbed areas, birds in areas of high chronic human disturbance were found to exhibit attenuated HR responses to acute anthropogenic stressors of low-intensity (i.e. sounds or human approaches) to which they had been subjected intensely over the years. However, such attenuation was not apparent for high-intensity stressors (i.e. captures for scientific research) which only a few individuals experience each year. Habituation to anthropogenic sounds/approaches could be an adaptation to deal with chronic innocuous stressors, and beneficial from a research perspective. Alternately, whether penguins have actually habituated to anthropogenic disturbances over time or whether human presence has driven the directional selection of human-tolerant phenotypes, remains an open question with profound ecological and conservation implications, and emphasizes the need for more knowledge on the effects of human disturbance on long-term studied populations.

  16. Coping with continuous human disturbance in the wild: insights from penguin heart rate response to various stressors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Viblanc Vincent A

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A central question for ecologists is the extent to which anthropogenic disturbances (e.g. tourism might impact wildlife and affect the systems under study. From a research perspective, identifying the effects of human disturbance caused by research-related activities is crucial in order to understand and account for potential biases and derive appropriate conclusions from the data. Results Here, we document a case of biological adjustment to chronic human disturbance in a colonial seabird, the king penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus, breeding on remote and protected islands of the Southern ocean. Using heart rate (HR as a measure of the stress response, we show that, in a colony with areas exposed to the continuous presence of humans (including scientists for over 50 years, penguins have adjusted to human disturbance and habituated to certain, but not all, types of stressors. When compared to birds breeding in relatively undisturbed areas, birds in areas of high chronic human disturbance were found to exhibit attenuated HR responses to acute anthropogenic stressors of low-intensity (i.e. sounds or human approaches to which they had been subjected intensely over the years. However, such attenuation was not apparent for high-intensity stressors (i.e. captures for scientific research which only a few individuals experience each year. Conclusions Habituation to anthropogenic sounds/approaches could be an adaptation to deal with chronic innocuous stressors, and beneficial from a research perspective. Alternately, whether penguins have actually habituated to anthropogenic disturbances over time or whether human presence has driven the directional selection of human-tolerant phenotypes, remains an open question with profound ecological and conservation implications, and emphasizes the need for more knowledge on the effects of human disturbance on long-term studied populations.

  17. Historical biome distribution and recent human disturbance shape the diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pärtel, Meelis; Öpik, Maarja; Moora, Mari; Tedersoo, Leho; Szava-Kovats, Robert; Rosendahl, Søren; Rillig, Matthias C; Lekberg, Ylva; Kreft, Holger; Helgason, Thorunn; Eriksson, Ove; Davison, John; de Bello, Francesco; Caruso, Tancredi; Zobel, Martin

    2017-10-01

    The availability of global microbial diversity data, collected using standardized metabarcoding techniques, makes microorganisms promising models for investigating the role of regional and local factors in driving biodiversity. Here we modelled the global diversity of symbiotic arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi using currently available data on AM fungal molecular diversity (small subunit (SSU) ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene sequences) in field samples. To differentiate between regional and local effects, we estimated species pools (sets of potentially suitable taxa) for each site, which are expected to reflect regional processes. We then calculated community completeness, an index showing the fraction of the species pool present, which is expected to reflect local processes. We found significant spatial variation, globally in species pool size, as well as in local and dark diversity (absent members of the species pool). Species pool size was larger close to areas containing tropical grasslands during the last glacial maximum, which are possible centres of diversification. Community completeness was greater in regions of high wilderness (remoteness from human disturbance). Local diversity was correlated with wilderness and current connectivity to mountain grasslands. Applying the species pool concept to symbiotic fungi facilitated a better understanding of how biodiversity can be jointly shaped by large-scale historical processes and recent human disturbance. © 2017 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  18. Disturbance legacies of historic tie-drives persistently alter geomorphology and large wood characteristics in headwater streams, southeast Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Claire M. Ruffing; Melinda D. Daniels; Kathleen A. Dwire

    2015-01-01

    Instream wood is recognized as an integral component of stream morphology in forested areas. However, few studies have evaluated the legacy effects of historic wood removal activities and associated impacts on channel morphology, contemporary wood loading, and recruitment. This study investigates the role of historic tie-driving, a widespread channel disturbance legacy...

  19. Diet rapidly and reproducibly alters the human gut microbiome

    Science.gov (United States)

    David, Lawrence A.; Maurice, Corinne F.; Carmody, Rachel N.; Gootenberg, David B.; Button, Julie E.; Wolfe, Benjamin E.; Ling, Alisha V.; Devlin, A. Sloan; Varma, Yug; Fischbach, Michael A.; Biddinger, Sudha B.; Dutton, Rachel J.; Turnbaugh, Peter J.

    2013-01-01

    Long-term diet influences the structure and activity of the trillions of microorganisms residing in the human gut1–5, but it remains unclear how rapidly and reproducibly the human gut microbiome responds to short-term macronutrient change. Here, we show that the short-term consumption of diets composed entirely of animal or plant products alters microbial community structure and overwhelms inter-individual differences in microbial gene expression. The animal-based diet increased the abundance of bile-tolerant microorganisms (Alistipes, Bilophila, and Bacteroides) and decreased the levels of Firmicutes that metabolize dietary plant polysaccharides (Roseburia, Eubacterium rectale, and Ruminococcus bromii). Microbial activity mirrored differences between herbivorous and carnivorous mammals2, reflecting trade-offs between carbohydrate and protein fermentation. Foodborne microbes from both diets transiently colonized the gut, including bacteria, fungi, and even viruses. Finally, increases in the abundance and activity of Bilophila wadsworthia on the animal-based diet support a link between dietary fat, bile acids, and the outgrowth of microorganisms capable of triggering inflammatory bowel disease6. In concert, these results demonstrate that the gut microbiome can rapidly respond to altered diet, potentially facilitating the diversity of human dietary lifestyles. PMID:24336217

  20. Acid sulphate soil disturbance and metals in groundwater: Implications for human exposure through home grown produce

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hinwood, Andrea Lee; Horwitz, Pierre; Appleyard, Steve; Barton, Caroline; Wajrak, Magda

    2006-01-01

    A significant emerging environmental problem is the disturbance and oxidation of soils with high levels of iron sulphide minerals resulting in acidification and causing the mobilization of metals into groundwater. This process is occurring in many parts of the world. In Western Australia, impacted groundwater is extracted by residents for domestic use. We sought to establish domestic use patterns of bore water and the concentration of metals. Sixty-seven domestic bore water samples clearly indicated oxidation of sulphidic materials with heavy metal concentrations ranging for aluminium (< DL-37.0 mg/L), arsenic (< DL-6.6 mg/L), iron (< DL-1200 mg/L), cadmium (< DL-0.021 mg/L), lead (< DL-0.040 mg/L), selenium (< DL-0.006 mg/L). A high proportion of residents used bore water on home grown produce. The study suggests that there is potential for human exposure to heavy metals via the consumption of home grown produce. This warrants further investigation in light of increasing acid sulphate soil disturbance in many locations. - Acidified bore water may introduce metals into produce for home consumption

  1. Dealing with Magnetic Disturbances in Human Motion Capture: A Survey of Techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriele Ligorio

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Magnetic-Inertial Measurement Units (MIMUs based on microelectromechanical (MEMS technologies are widespread in contexts such as human motion tracking. Although they present several advantages (lightweight, size, cost, their orientation estimation accuracy might be poor. Indoor magnetic disturbances represent one of the limiting factors for their accuracy, and, therefore, a variety of work was done to characterize and compensate them. In this paper, the main compensation strategies included within Kalman-based orientation estimators are surveyed and classified according to which degrees of freedom are affected by the magnetic data and to the magnetic disturbance rejection methods implemented. By selecting a representative method from each category, four algorithms were obtained and compared in two different magnetic environments: (1 small workspace with an active magnetic source; (2 large workspace without active magnetic sources. A wrist-worn MIMU was used to acquire data from a healthy subject, whereas a stereophotogrammetric system was adopted to obtain ground-truth data. The results suggested that the model-based approaches represent the best compromise between the two testbeds. This is particularly true when the magnetic data are prevented to affect the estimation of the angles with respect to the vertical direction.

  2. Minor cognitive disturbances in old age - an early stage of dementia?; Die leichte kognitive Stoerung Vergesslichkeit im Alter - eine Vorstufe der Demenz?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hoedl, A.K.; Bonelli, R.M.; Kapfhammer, H.P. [Universitaetsklinik fuer Psychiatrie, Karl-Franzens-Univ. Graz (Austria)

    2005-06-09

    In clinical practice, minor cognitive disturbances should not be neglected as they may be the first signs of a process that may in the end lead to a loss of cognitive skills and even to dementia. (orig.) [German] Alter und zunehmende Vergesslichkeit werden oft mit grosser Selbstverstaendlichkeit assoziiert. (''Bei Opa rieselt eben schon der Kalk.'') Dass sich hier ein schleichender Verlust der kognitiven Faehigkeiten bis hin zur Demenz ankuendigen kann, wird dabei verkannt. Fuer die Praxis ist es daher von grosser Bedeutung, bereits leichte kognitive Stoerungen richtig einzuschaetzen und bei Bedarf zu therapieren. (orig.)

  3. Effects of human disturbance on waterbird nesting and reproductive success at restoration pond SF2, south San Francisco Bay, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ackerman, Joshua T.; Herzog, Mark P.; Hartman, Christopher A.

    2014-01-01

    To offset for the loss of managed pond habitat during restoration of wetlands to tidal marsh, the South Bay Salt Pond (SBSP) Restoration Project is enhancing some of the remaining ponds by constructing islands for roosting and nesting waterbirds. Among these wetland habitats, the SBSP Restoration Project also is installing walking trails and viewing platforms in an effort to bring the public closer to nature. In winter of 2010–11, the SBSP Restoration Project constructed 30 islands in Pond SF2 and walking trails and viewing platforms around the edge of the pond. The restoration project partners acknowledged that human disturbance could detrimentally affect nesting and roosting waterbirds. Although optimal buffer distances and potential for human disturbance were unknown, islands in Pond SF2, nevertheless, were designed with built-in buffers of greater than 300 feet (91 meters) from a trail and 600 feet (182 meters) from a viewing platform in order to minimize potential human disturbances.

  4. Do Quercus ilex woodlands undergo abrupt non-linear functional changes in response to human disturbance along a climatic gradient?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bochet, Esther; García-Fayos, Patricio; José Molina, Maria; Moreno de las Heras, Mariano; Espigares, Tíscar; Nicolau, Jose Manuel; Monleon, Vicente

    2017-04-01

    Theoretical models predict that drylands are particularly prone to suffer critical transitions with abrupt non-linear changes in their structure and functions as a result of the existing complex interactions between climatic fluctuations and human disturbances. However, so far, few studies provide empirical data to validate these models. We aim at determining how holm oak (Quercus ilex) woodlands undergo changes in their functions in response to human disturbance along an aridity gradient (from semi-arid to sub-humid conditions), in eastern Spain. For that purpose, we used (a) remote-sensing estimations of precipitation-use-efficiency (PUE) from enhanced vegetation index (EVI) observations performed in 231x231 m plots of the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS); (b) biological and chemical soil parameter determinations (extracellular soil enzyme activity, soil respiration, nutrient cycling processes) from soil sampled in the same plots; (c) vegetation parameter determinations (ratio of functional groups) from vegetation surveys performed in the same plots. We analyzed and compared the shape of the functional change (in terms of PUE and soil and vegetation parameters) in response to human disturbance intensity for our holm oak sites along the aridity gradient. Overall, our results evidenced important differences in the shape of the functional change in response to human disturbance between climatic conditions. Semi-arid areas experienced a more accelerated non-linear decrease with an increasing disturbance intensity than sub-humid ones. The proportion of functional groups (herbaceous vs. woody cover) played a relevant role in the shape of the functional response of the holm oak sites to human disturbance.

  5. Do alterations in follicular fluid proteases contribute to human infertility?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cookingham, Lisa Marii; Van Voorhis, Bradley J; Ascoli, Mario

    2015-05-01

    Cathepsin L and ADAMTS-1 are known to play critical roles in follicular rupture, ovulation, and fertility in mice. Similar studies in humans are limited; however, both are known to increase during the periovulatory period. No studies have examined either protease in the follicular fluid of women with unexplained infertility or infertility related to advanced maternal age (AMA). We sought to determine if alterations in cathepsin L and/or ADAMTS-1 existed in these infertile populations. Patients undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF) for unexplained infertility or AMA-related infertility were prospectively recruited for the study; patients with tubal or male factor infertility were recruited as controls. Follicular fluid was collected to determine gene expression (via quantitative polymerase chain reaction), enzyme concentrations (via enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays), and enzymatic activities (via fluorogenic enzyme cleavage assay or Western blot analysis) of cathepsin L and ADAMTS-1. The analysis included a total of 42 patients (14 per group). We found no statistically significant difference in gene expression, enzyme concentration, or enzymatic activity of cathepsin L or ADAMTS-1 in unexplained infertility or AMA-related infertility as compared to controls. We also found no statistically significant difference in expression or concentration with advancing age. Cathepsin L and ADAMTS-1 are not altered in women with unexplained infertility or AMA-related infertility undergoing IVF, and they do not decline with advancing age. It is possible that differences exist in natural cycles, contributing to infertility; however, our findings do not support a role for protease alterations as a common cause of infertility.

  6. Earthworms as indicators for different forest management types and human disturbance in Ilam oak forest, Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heydari Mehdi

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available There has been observed widespread destruction of natural ecosystems around the world due to population growth, land use change and clear cutting which have affected soil properties. Different management strategies have been so far implemented to reduce this crisis in various regions of the world, such as e.g. short-term and long-term conservation management in the Zagros region. However, any management approach should be evaluated with appropriate measures to determine how managed areas respond. The main objective of the present study was to evaluate the potential of earthworms as an indicator for different forest management strategies and human disturbances in Zagros oak (Quercus persica Jaub. and Spach forest. The sites selected included undisturbed one as the control (Un, the sites under five-year conservation management (FCM and twenty-year conservation management (TCM as well as the disturbed site (D. The results of principal component analysis (PCA showed that different regions separated into the components: PC1 and PC2. Un and TCM sites gathered together and represented higher values of the factors such as pH, Kavailable, OC, clay content, Pavailable, CEC, overstory tree canopy, Ntot, biomass and abundance of earthworms. The positive direction of the first axis reflected a gradient of EC, BD and Ptot. According to the logistic model, NH4-N and EC played the most important role in earthworm presence and absence in Zagros forest ecosystem. Earthworm abundance and biomass could be a good indicator to evaluate different forest management strategies in the study area.

  7. Metabolic state alters economic decision making under risk in humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mkael Symmonds

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Animals' attitudes to risk are profoundly influenced by metabolic state (hunger and baseline energy stores. Specifically, animals often express a preference for risky (more variable food sources when below a metabolic reference point (hungry, and safe (less variable food sources when sated. Circulating hormones report the status of energy reserves and acute nutrient intake to widespread targets in the central nervous system that regulate feeding behaviour, including brain regions strongly implicated in risk and reward based decision-making in humans. Despite this, physiological influences per se have not been considered previously to influence economic decisions in humans. We hypothesised that baseline metabolic reserves and alterations in metabolic state would systematically modulate decision-making and financial risk-taking in humans.We used a controlled feeding manipulation and assayed decision-making preferences across different metabolic states following a meal. To elicit risk-preference, we presented a sequence of 200 paired lotteries, subjects' task being to select their preferred option from each pair. We also measured prandial suppression of circulating acyl-ghrelin (a centrally-acting orexigenic hormone signalling acute nutrient intake, and circulating leptin levels (providing an assay of energy reserves. We show both immediate and delayed effects on risky decision-making following a meal, and that these changes correlate with an individual's baseline leptin and changes in acyl-ghrelin levels respectively.We show that human risk preferences are exquisitely sensitive to current metabolic state, in a direction consistent with ecological models of feeding behaviour but not predicted by normative economic theory. These substantive effects of state changes on economic decisions perhaps reflect shared evolutionarily conserved neurobiological mechanisms. We suggest that this sensitivity in human risk-preference to current metabolic state has

  8. Human alteration of the rural landscape: Variations in visual perception

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cloquell-Ballester, Vicente-Agustín; Carmen Torres-Sibille, Ana del; Cloquell-Ballester, Víctor-Andrés; Santamarina-Siurana, María Cristina

    2012-01-01

    The objective of this investigation is to evaluate how visual perception varies as the rural landscape is altered by human interventions of varying character. An experiment is carried out using Semantic Differential Analysis to analyse the effect of the character and the type of the intervention on perception. Interventions are divided into elements of “permanent industrial character”, “elements of permanent rural character” and “elements of temporary character”, and these categories are sub-divided into smaller groups according to the type of development. To increase the reliability of the results, the Intraclass Correlation Coefficient tool, is applied to validate the semantic space of the perceptual responses and to determine the number of subjects required for a reliable evaluation of the scenes.

  9. Medical humanities and medical alterity in fiction and in life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurwitz, Brian

    2016-01-01

    A widely accepted component of any answer to the question ‘What is it to do good medical ethics?’ is the commitment to benefit people’s health, in principlist terminology, ‘beneficence’. This paper addresses deliberate maleficence and the cultural otherness with which it is associated, focusing on the activities of the serial killer Dr Harold Shipman. It finds an uncanny ‘fit’ between the normal operation of healthcare services and this sort of alterity which has attracted little attention from bioethicists but has been addressed by novelists. To the extent that the medical humanities offers useful insights into hard moral problems, its capacities rest on taking account of both the fictional and the real. PMID:25516938

  10. Does the contraceptive pill alter mate choice in humans?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvergne, Alexandra; Lummaa, Virpi

    2010-03-01

    Female and male mate choice preferences in humans both vary according to the menstrual cycle. Women prefer more masculine, symmetrical and genetically unrelated men during ovulation compared with other phases of their cycle, and recent evidence suggests that men prefer ovulating women to others. Such monthly shifts in mate preference have been suggested to bring evolutionary benefits in terms of reproductive success. New evidence is now emerging that taking the oral contraceptive pill might significantly alter both female and male mate choice by removing the mid-cycle change in preferences. Here, we review support for such conclusions and speculate on the consequences of pill-induced choice of otherwise less-preferred partners for relationship satisfaction, durability and, ultimately, reproductive outcomes.

  11. Human alteration of the rural landscape: Variations in visual perception

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cloquell-Ballester, Vicente-Agustin, E-mail: cloquell@dpi.upv.es; Carmen Torres-Sibille, Ana del; Cloquell-Ballester, Victor-Andres; Santamarina-Siurana, Maria Cristina

    2012-01-15

    The objective of this investigation is to evaluate how visual perception varies as the rural landscape is altered by human interventions of varying character. An experiment is carried out using Semantic Differential Analysis to analyse the effect of the character and the type of the intervention on perception. Interventions are divided into elements of 'permanent industrial character', 'elements of permanent rural character' and 'elements of temporary character', and these categories are sub-divided into smaller groups according to the type of development. To increase the reliability of the results, the Intraclass Correlation Coefficient tool, is applied to validate the semantic space of the perceptual responses and to determine the number of subjects required for a reliable evaluation of the scenes.

  12. Alternative splicing variants of human Fbx4 disturb cyclin D1 proteolysis in human cancer

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chu, Xiufeng; Zhang, Ting; Wang, Jie; Li, Meng; Zhang, Xiaolei; Tu, Jing [Department of Microbiology and Infectious Disease Center, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing 100191 (China); Sun, Shiqin [College of Pharmacy, Harbin Medical University-Daqing, Daqing, Heilongjiang 163319 (China); Chen, Xiangmei, E-mail: xm_chen6176@bjmu.edu.cn [Department of Microbiology and Infectious Disease Center, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing 100191 (China); Lu, Fengmin [Department of Microbiology and Infectious Disease Center, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing 100191 (China)

    2014-04-25

    Highlights: • The expression of Fbx4 was significantly lower in HCC tissues. • Novel splicing variants of Fbx4 were identified. • These novel variants are much more abundant in human cancer tissues and cells. • The novel Fbx4 isoforms could promote cell proliferation and migration in vitro. • These isoforms showed less capability for cyclin D1 binding and degradation. - Abstract: Fbx4 is a specific substrate recognition component of SCF ubiquitin ligases that catalyzes the ubiquitination and subsequent degradation of cyclin D1 and Trx1. Two isoforms of human Fbx4 protein, the full length Fbx4α and the C-terminal truncated Fbx4β have been identified, but their functions remain elusive. In this study, we demonstrated that the mRNA level of Fbx4 was significantly lower in hepatocellular carcinoma tissues than that in the corresponding non-tumor tissues. More importantly, we identified three novel splicing variants of Fbx4: Fbx4γ (missing 168–245nt of exon1), Fbx4δ (missing exon6) and a N-terminal reading frame shift variant (missing exon2). Using cloning sequencing and RT-PCR, we demonstrated these novel splice variants are much more abundant in human cancer tissues and cell lines than that in normal tissues. When expressed in Sk-Hep1 and NIH3T3 cell lines, Fbx4β, Fbx4γ and Fbx4δ could promote cell proliferation and migration in vitro. Concordantly, these isoforms could disrupt cyclin D1 degradation and therefore increase cyclin D1 expression. Moreover, unlike the full-length isoform Fbx4α that mainly exists in cytoplasm, Fbx4β, Fbx4γ, and Fbx4δ locate in both cytoplasm and nucleus. Since cyclin D1 degradation takes place in cytoplasm, the nuclear distribution of these Fbx4 isoforms may not be involved in the down-regulation of cytoplasmic cyclin D1. These results define the impact of alternative splicing on Fbx4 function, and suggest that the attenuated cyclin D1 degradation by these novel Fbx4 isoforms provides a new insight for aberrant

  13. Alternative splicing variants of human Fbx4 disturb cyclin D1 proteolysis in human cancer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chu, Xiufeng; Zhang, Ting; Wang, Jie; Li, Meng; Zhang, Xiaolei; Tu, Jing; Sun, Shiqin; Chen, Xiangmei; Lu, Fengmin

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • The expression of Fbx4 was significantly lower in HCC tissues. • Novel splicing variants of Fbx4 were identified. • These novel variants are much more abundant in human cancer tissues and cells. • The novel Fbx4 isoforms could promote cell proliferation and migration in vitro. • These isoforms showed less capability for cyclin D1 binding and degradation. - Abstract: Fbx4 is a specific substrate recognition component of SCF ubiquitin ligases that catalyzes the ubiquitination and subsequent degradation of cyclin D1 and Trx1. Two isoforms of human Fbx4 protein, the full length Fbx4α and the C-terminal truncated Fbx4β have been identified, but their functions remain elusive. In this study, we demonstrated that the mRNA level of Fbx4 was significantly lower in hepatocellular carcinoma tissues than that in the corresponding non-tumor tissues. More importantly, we identified three novel splicing variants of Fbx4: Fbx4γ (missing 168–245nt of exon1), Fbx4δ (missing exon6) and a N-terminal reading frame shift variant (missing exon2). Using cloning sequencing and RT-PCR, we demonstrated these novel splice variants are much more abundant in human cancer tissues and cell lines than that in normal tissues. When expressed in Sk-Hep1 and NIH3T3 cell lines, Fbx4β, Fbx4γ and Fbx4δ could promote cell proliferation and migration in vitro. Concordantly, these isoforms could disrupt cyclin D1 degradation and therefore increase cyclin D1 expression. Moreover, unlike the full-length isoform Fbx4α that mainly exists in cytoplasm, Fbx4β, Fbx4γ, and Fbx4δ locate in both cytoplasm and nucleus. Since cyclin D1 degradation takes place in cytoplasm, the nuclear distribution of these Fbx4 isoforms may not be involved in the down-regulation of cytoplasmic cyclin D1. These results define the impact of alternative splicing on Fbx4 function, and suggest that the attenuated cyclin D1 degradation by these novel Fbx4 isoforms provides a new insight for aberrant

  14. Human-Induced Disturbance Alters Pollinator Communities in Tropical Mountain Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias Schleuning

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Mountain forest ecosystems in the Andes are threatened by deforestation. Increasing fire frequencies lead to fire-degraded habitats that are often characterized by a persistent fern-dominated vegetation. Little is known about the consequences of these drastic changes in habitat conditions for pollinator communities. In a rapid diversity assessment, we collected individuals of two major groups of insect pollinators (bees and butterflies/moths with pan traps and compared pollinator diversities in a spatial block design between forest interior, forest edge and adjacent fire-degraded habitats at eight sites in the Bolivian Andes. We found that bee species richness and abundance were significantly higher in fire-degraded habitats than in forest habitats, whereas species richness and abundance of butterflies/moths increased towards the forests interior. Species turnover between forest and fire-degraded habitats was very high for both pollinator groups and was reflected by an increase in the body size of bee species and a decrease in the body size of butterfly/moth species in fire-degraded habitats. We conclude that deforestation by frequent fires has profound impacts on the diversity and composition of pollinator communities. Our tentative findings suggest shifts towards bee-dominated pollinator communities in fire-degraded habitats that may have important feedbacks on the regenerating communities of insect-pollinated plant species.

  15. Effect of human disturbance on the prey of tiger in the Chitwan National Park - Implications for park management

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bhattarai, Bishnu Prasad; Kindlmann, Pavel

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 131, DEC 15 2013 (2013), s. 343-350 ISSN 0301-4797 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) ED1.1.00/02.0073; GA MŠk LC06073 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : human disturbance * ungulates * conservation * habitats * predators Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.188, year: 2013

  16. Alteration of the irisin–brain-derived neurotrophic factor axis contributes to disturbance of mood in COPD patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Papp C

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Csaba Papp,1 Krisztian Pak,2 Tamas Erdei,2 Bela Juhasz,2 Ildiko Seres,3 Anita Szentpéteri,3 Laszlo Kardos,4 Maria Szilasi,5 Rudolf Gesztelyi,2 Judit Zsuga1 1Department of Health Systems Management and Quality Management for Health Care, Faculty of Public Health, 2Department of Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapy, Faculty of Medicine, 3Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Debrecen, 4Department of Clinical Pharmacology, Infectious Diseases and Allergology, Kenezy Gyula Teaching County Hospital and Outpatient Clinic, 5Department of Pulmonology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Debrecen, Debrecen, Hungary Abstract: COPD is accompanied by limited physical activity, worse quality of life, and increased prevalence of depression. A possible link between COPD and depression may be irisin, a myokine, expression of which in the skeletal muscle and brain positively correlates with physical activity. Irisin enhances the synthesis of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF, a neurotrophin involved in reward-related processes. Thus, we hypothesized that mood disturbances accompanying COPD are reflected by the changes in the irisin–BDNF axis. Case history, routine laboratory parameters, serum irisin and BDNF levels, pulmonary function, and disease-specific quality of life, measured by St George’s Respiratory Questionnaire (SGRQ, were determined in a cohort of COPD patients (n=74. Simple and then multiple linear regression were used to evaluate the data. We found that mood disturbances are associated with lower serum irisin levels (SGRQ’s Impacts score and reciprocal of irisin showed a strong positive association; β: 419.97; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 204.31, 635.63; P<0.001. This association was even stronger among patients in the lower 50% of BDNF levels (β: 434.11; 95% CI: 166.17, 702.05; P=0.002, while it became weaker for patients in the higher 50% of BDNF concentrations (β: 373.49; 95% CI: -74.91, 821.88; P=0

  17. Past Human Disturbance Effects upon Biodiversity are Greatest in the Canopy; A Case Study on Rainforest Butterflies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitworth, Andrew; Villacampa, Jaime; Brown, Alice; Huarcaya, Ruthmery Pillco; Downie, Roger; MacLeod, Ross

    2016-01-01

    A key part of tropical forest spatial complexity is the vertical stratification of biodiversity, with widely differing communities found in higher rainforest strata compared to terrestrial levels. Despite this, our understanding of how human disturbance may differentially affect biodiversity across vertical strata of tropical forests has been slow to develop. For the first time, how the patterns of current biodiversity vary between three vertical strata within a single forest, subject to three different types of historic anthropogenic disturbance, was directly assessed. In total, 229 species of butterfly were detected, with a total of 5219 individual records. Butterfly species richness, species diversity, abundance and community evenness differed markedly between vertical strata. We show for the first time, for any group of rainforest biodiversity, that different vertical strata within the same rainforest, responded differently in areas with different historic human disturbance. Differences were most notable within the canopy. Regenerating forest following complete clearance had 47% lower canopy species richness than regenerating forest that was once selectively logged, while the reduction in the mid-storey was 33% and at ground level, 30%. These results also show for the first time that even long term regeneration (over the course of 30 years) may be insufficient to erase differences in biodiversity linked to different types of human disturbance. We argue, along with other studies, that ignoring the potential for more pronounced effects of disturbance on canopy fauna, could lead to the underestimation of the effects of habitat disturbance on biodiversity, and thus the overestimation of the conservation value of regenerating forests more generally.

  18. Past Human Disturbance Effects upon Biodiversity are Greatest in the Canopy; A Case Study on Rainforest Butterflies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Whitworth

    Full Text Available A key part of tropical forest spatial complexity is the vertical stratification of biodiversity, with widely differing communities found in higher rainforest strata compared to terrestrial levels. Despite this, our understanding of how human disturbance may differentially affect biodiversity across vertical strata of tropical forests has been slow to develop. For the first time, how the patterns of current biodiversity vary between three vertical strata within a single forest, subject to three different types of historic anthropogenic disturbance, was directly assessed. In total, 229 species of butterfly were detected, with a total of 5219 individual records. Butterfly species richness, species diversity, abundance and community evenness differed markedly between vertical strata. We show for the first time, for any group of rainforest biodiversity, that different vertical strata within the same rainforest, responded differently in areas with different historic human disturbance. Differences were most notable within the canopy. Regenerating forest following complete clearance had 47% lower canopy species richness than regenerating forest that was once selectively logged, while the reduction in the mid-storey was 33% and at ground level, 30%. These results also show for the first time that even long term regeneration (over the course of 30 years may be insufficient to erase differences in biodiversity linked to different types of human disturbance. We argue, along with other studies, that ignoring the potential for more pronounced effects of disturbance on canopy fauna, could lead to the underestimation of the effects of habitat disturbance on biodiversity, and thus the overestimation of the conservation value of regenerating forests more generally.

  19. Long term repeated fire disturbance alters soil bacterial diversity but not the abundance in an Australian wet sclerophyll forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Ju-pei; Chen, C R; Lewis, Tom

    2016-01-20

    Effects of fire on biogeochemical cycling in terrestrial ecosystem are widely acknowledged, while few studies have focused on the bacterial community under the disturbance of long-term frequent prescribed fire. In this study, three treatments (burning every two years (B2), burning every four years (B4) and no burning (B0)) were applied for 38 years in an Australian wet sclerophyll forest. Results showed that bacterial alpha diversity (i.e. bacterial OTU) in the top soil (0-10 cm) was significantly higher in the B2 treatment compared with the B0 and B4 treatments. Non-metric multidimensional analysis (NMDS) of bacterial community showed clear separation of the soil bacterial community structure among different fire frequency regimes and between the depths. Different frequency fire did not have a substantial effect on bacterial composition at phylum level or bacterial 16S rRNA gene abundance. Soil pH and C:N ratio were the major drivers for bacterial community structure in the most frequent fire treatment (B2), while other factors (EC, DOC, DON, MBC, NH4(+), TC and TN) were significant in the less frequent burning and no burning treatments (B4 and B0). This study suggested that burning had a dramatic impact on bacterial diversity but not abundance with more frequent fire.

  20. Ionospheric disturbances generated by different natural processes and by human activity in Earth plasma environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Blecki

    2004-06-01

    Full Text Available The magnetosphere-ionosphere-thermosphere subsystem is strongly coupled via the electric field, particle precipitation, heat flows and small scale interaction. Satellites in situ measurements and ground based complex diagnostics can provide comprehensive coverage of both time and geomagnetic place effects. Human activity also can perturb Earth s environment, but few are connected with controlled experiments in the ionosphere and are transient. Most of them are related to industrial activity and have increased in recent years. The most important power sources are broadcasting transmitters, power stations, power lines and heavy industry. At ionospheric altitude some disturbances and physical processes are related to seismic activity, thunderstorm activity and some global changes in the Earth environment such as ozone holes. Various natural and artificial indicators can affect satellite telecommunication quality. The aim of this presentation is to report progress in understanding the physical processes in the ionosphere described above and to assess the application of these considerations to the study of plasma effects on Earth-space and satellite-to-satellite communication.

  1. Membrane alterations induced by nonstructural proteins of human norovirus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylvie Y Doerflinger

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Human noroviruses (huNoV are the most frequent cause of non-bacterial acute gastroenteritis worldwide, particularly genogroup II genotype 4 (GII.4 variants. The viral nonstructural (NS proteins encoded by the ORF1 polyprotein induce vesical clusters harboring the viral replication sites. Little is known so far about the ultrastructure of these replication organelles or the contribution of individual NS proteins to their biogenesis. We compared the ultrastructural changes induced by expression of norovirus ORF1 polyproteins with those induced upon infection with murine norovirus (MNV. Characteristic membrane alterations induced by ORF1 expression resembled those found in MNV infected cells, consisting of vesicle accumulations likely built from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER which included single membrane vesicles (SMVs, double membrane vesicles (DMVs and multi membrane vesicles (MMVs. In-depth analysis using electron tomography suggested that MMVs originate through the enwrapping of SMVs with tubular structures similar to mechanisms reported for picornaviruses. Expression of GII.4 NS1-2, NS3 and NS4 fused to GFP revealed distinct membrane alterations when analyzed by correlative light and electron microscopy. Expression of NS1-2 induced proliferation of smooth ER membranes forming long tubular structures that were affected by mutations in the active center of the putative NS1-2 hydrolase domain. NS3 was associated with ER membranes around lipid droplets (LDs and induced the formation of convoluted membranes, which were even more pronounced in case of NS4. Interestingly, NS4 was the only GII.4 protein capable of inducing SMV and DMV formation when expressed individually. Our work provides the first ultrastructural analysis of norovirus GII.4 induced vesicle clusters and suggests that their morphology and biogenesis is most similar to picornaviruses. We further identified NS4 as a key factor in the formation of membrane alterations of huNoV and

  2. Rapid alterations of cell cycle control proteins in human T lymphocytes in microgravity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thiel Cora S

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In our study we aimed to identify rapidly reacting gravity-responsive mechanisms in mammalian cells in order to understand if and how altered gravity is translated into a cellular response. In a combination of experiments using "functional weightlessness" provided by 2D-clinostats and real microgravity provided by several parabolic flight campaigns and compared to in-flight-1g-controls, we identified rapid gravity-responsive reactions inside the cell cycle regulatory machinery of human T lymphocytes. In response to 2D clinorotation, we detected an enhanced expression of p21 Waf1/Cip1 protein within minutes, less cdc25C protein expression and enhanced Ser147-phosphorylation of cyclinB1 after CD3/CD28 stimulation. Additionally, during 2D clinorotation, Tyr-15-phosphorylation occurred later and was shorter than in the 1 g controls. In CD3/CD28-stimulated primary human T cells, mRNA expression of the cell cycle arrest protein p21 increased 4.1-fold after 20s real microgravity in primary CD4+ T cells and 2.9-fold in Jurkat T cells, compared to 1 g in-flight controls after CD3/CD28 stimulation. The histone acetyltransferase (HAT inhibitor curcumin was able to abrogate microgravity-induced p21 mRNA expression, whereas expression was enhanced by a histone deacetylase (HDAC inhibitor. Therefore, we suppose that cell cycle progression in human T lymphocytes requires Earth gravity and that the disturbed expression of cell cycle regulatory proteins could contribute to the breakdown of the human immune system in space.

  3. Altered gene expression in human placentas after IVF/ICSI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelissen, Ewka C M; Dumoulin, John C M; Busato, Florence; Ponger, Loïc; Eijssen, Lars M; Evers, Johannes L H; Tost, Jörg; van Montfoort, Aafke P A

    2014-12-01

    Is gene expression in placental tissue of IVF/ICSI patients altered when compared with a spontaneously conceived group, and are these alterations due to loss of imprinting (LOI) in the case of imprinted genes? An altered imprinted gene expression of H19 and Pleckstrin homology-like domain family A member 2 (PHLDA2), which was not due to LOI, was observed in human placentas after IVF/ICSI and several biological pathways were significantly overrepresented and mostly up-regulated. Genomic imprinting plays an important role in placental biology and in placental adaptive responses triggered by external stimuli. Changes in placental development and function can have dramatic effects on the fetus and its ability to cope with the intrauterine environment. An increased frequency of placenta-related problems as well as an adverse perinatal outcome is seen in IVF/ICSI derived pregnancies, but the role of placental epigenetic deregulation is not clear yet. In this prospective cohort study, a total of 115 IVF/ICSI and 138 control couples were included during pregnancy. After applying several exclusion criteria (i.e. preterm birth or stillbirth, no placental samples, pregnancy complications or birth defects), respectively, 81 and 105 placentas from IVF/ICSI and control pregnancies remained for analysis. Saliva samples were collected from both parents. We quantitatively analysed the mRNA expression of several growth-related imprinted genes [H19, insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2), PHLDA2, cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1C (CDKN1C), mesoderm-specific transcript homolog (MEST) isoform α and β by quantitative PCR] after standardization against three housekeeping genes [Succinate dehydrogenase A (SDHA), YWHAZ and TATA-binding protein (TBP)]. A quantitative allele-specific expression analysis of the differentially expressed imprinted genes was performed to investigate LOI, independent of the mechanism of imprinting. Furthermore, a microarray analysis was carried out (n = 10 in

  4. Alterations in calcium metabolism during human monocyte activation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Scully, S.P.

    1984-01-01

    Human peripheral blood monocytes have been prepared from plateletpheresis residues by counterflow centrifugal elutriation in sufficient quantities to enable quantitative studies of cell calcium. Kinetic analysis of 45 Ca exchange data in resting monocytes was compatible with a model of cellular calcium containing three exchangeable calcium pools. These pools are thought to represent a putative ectocellular pool, a putative cytoplasmic chelated pool, and a putative organelle sequestered pool. Exposure of monocytes to the plant lectin Con A at a concentration that maximally simulated superoxide production caused an increase in the size and a doubling in the exchange rate of the putative cytoplasmic pool without a change in the other cellular pools. The cytoplasmic ionized calcium, [Ca]/sub i/, measured with the fluorescent probe, Quin 2 rose from a resting level of 83 nM to 165 mN within 30 sec of exposure to Con A. This increase in cytoplasmic calcium preceded the release of superoxide radicals. Calcium transport and calcium ATPase activities were identified and characterized in plasma membrane vesicles prepared from monocytes. Both activities were strictly dependent on ATP and Mg, had a Km/sub Ca/ in the submicromolar range and were stimulated by calmodulin. Thus, it seems that monocyte calcium is in a dynamic steady state that is a balance between efflux and influx rates, and that the activation of these cells results in the transition to a new steady state. The alteration in [Ca]/sub i/ that accompany the new steady state are essential for superoxide production by human monocytes

  5. Can human activities alter the drowning fate of barrier islands?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzo-Trueba, J.; Ashton, A. D.; Jin, D.; Hoagland, P.; Kite-Powell, H.

    2012-12-01

    Low-lying coastal barriers face an uncertain future over the coming century and beyond as sea levels rise, with many projections suggesting end-of-century rates of sea-level rise as high or higher than 1 cm/yr. Geologically, such rates of sea-level rise have been experienced several thousand years ago and we can use our understanding of geological processes and sedimentary evidence to help unravel the dynamics of natural barriers experiencing sea-level rise. Along many modern coastal barriers, however, anthropic change, such as beach nourishment, dune construction, and emplacement of hard structures, plays a dominant role in coastline dynamics. A fundamental question to be addressed is whether human activities intended to preserve infrastructure and beach recreation may make wholesale collapse, or 'drowning,' of barrier systems more likely. Here we present a numerical modeling tool that couples natural processes and the human responses to these changes (and the subsequent of human responses on natural processes). Recent theoretical model development suggests that barriers are intrinsically morphodynamic features, responding to sea-level rise in complex ways through the interactions of marine processes and barrier overwash. Undeveloped coastal barriers would therefore respond to an accelerated sea-level rise in complex, less predictable manners than suggested by existing long-term models. We have developed a model that examines non-equilibrium cross-shore evolution of barrier systems at decadal to centennial temporal scales, focusing on the interactions between processes of shoreface evolution and overwash deposition. Model responses demonstrate two means of barrier collapse during sea-level rise: 'height drowning', which occurs when overwash fluxes are insufficient to maintain the landward migration rate required to keep in pace with sea-level rise, and 'width drowning', which occurs when the shoreface response is insufficient to maintain the barrier geometry

  6. Mycobacterium leprae alters classical activation of human monocytes in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fallows, Dorothy; Peixoto, Blas; Kaplan, Gilla; Manca, Claudia

    2016-01-01

    Macrophages play a central role in the pathogenesis of leprosy, caused by Mycobacterium leprae. The polarized clinical presentations in leprosy are associated with differential immune activation. In tuberculoid leprosy, macrophages show a classical activation phenotype (M1), while macrophages in lepromatous disease display characteristics of alternative activation (M2). Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccination, which protects against leprosy, can promote sustained changes in monocyte response to unrelated pathogens and may preferentially direct monocytes towards an M1 protective phenotype. We previously reported that M. leprae can dampen the response of naïve human monocytes to a strong inducer of pro-inflammatory cytokines, such as BCG. Here, we investigated the ability of the pathogen to alter the direction of macrophage polarization and the impact of BCG vaccination on the monocyte response to M. leprae. We show that in vitro exposure of monocytes from healthy donors to M. leprae interferes with subsequent M1 polarization, indicated by lower levels of M1-associated cytokine/chemokines released and reduced expression of M1 cell surface markers. Exposure to M. leprae phenolic glycolipid (PGL) 1, instead of whole bacteria, demonstrated a similar effect on M1 cytokine/chemokine release. In addition, we found that monocytes from 10-week old BCG-vaccinated infants released higher levels of the pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IL-1β in response to M. leprae compared to those from unvaccinated infants. Exposure to M. leprae has an inhibitory effect on M1 macrophage polarization, likely mediated through PGL-1. By directing monocyte/macrophages preferentially towards M1 activation, BCG vaccination may render the cells more refractory to the inhibitory effects of subsequent M. leprae infection.

  7. Urinary acylcarnitines are altered in human kidney cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ganti, Sheila; Taylor, Sandra L; Kim, Kyoungmi; Hoppel, Charles L; Guo, Lining; Yang, Joy; Evans, Christopher; Weiss, Robert H

    2012-06-15

    Kidney cancer often diagnosed at late stages when treatment options are severely limited. Thus, greater understanding of tumor metabolism leading ultimately to novel approaches to diagnosis is needed. Our laboratory has been utilizing metabolomics to evaluate compounds appearing in kidney cancer patients' biofluids at concentrations different from control patients. Here, we collected urine samples from kidney cancer patients and analyzed them by chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry. Once normalized to control for urinary concentration, samples were analyzed by two independent laboratories. After technical validation, we now show differential urinary concentrations of several acylcarnitines as a function of both cancer status and kidney cancer grade, with most acylcarnitines being increased in the urine of cancer patients and in those patients with high cancer grades. This finding was validated in a mouse xenograft model of human kidney cancer. Biological validation shows carbon chain length-dependent effects of the acylcarnitines on cytotoxicity in vitro, and higher chain length acylcarnitines demonstrated inhibitory effects on NF-κB activation, suggesting an immune modulatory effect of these compounds. Thus, acylcarnitines in the kidney cancer urine may reflect alterations in metabolism, cell component synthesis and/or immune surveillance, and may help explain the profound chemotherapy resistance seen with this cancer. This study shows for the first time the value of a novel class of metabolites which may lead to new therapeutic approaches for cancer and may prove useful in cancer biomarker studies. Furthermore, these findings open up a new area of investigation into the metabolic basis of kidney cancer. Copyright © 2011 UICC.

  8. The effects of human disturbance on the activity of wild reindeer in different physical condition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Terje Skogland

    1988-06-01

    Full Text Available We compared two Norwegian wild reindeer herds, Knutsho in excellent physical condition and Hardangervidda in poor physical condition, before and during disturbance by human hunters in order to test whether physical condition effected foraging strategy under stress. Both herds were being regularly hunted (man had been a natural predator on reindeer since prehistoric time. The well-fed Knutsho animals were ca. 30% larger at the start of the hunting season in late August. Before exposure they foraged less and walked more, i.e. were more selective than the Hardangervidda animals which were in energetically lower condition and foraged significantly more and spent less time moving between habitat patches and less time standing. After exposure to hunters disturbed Knutsho animals aggregated into significantly larger groups than before hunting and stood alert more, while Hardangervidda animals spent the same minimum amount of time foraging but moved significantly more and spent almost no time standing. The frequency of disturbance was not significantly different between the two herds and their speeds of movement after disturbances were similar. The hunter kill success rate was also similar in the two areas. The energetic costs, measured as relative body weight loss during the hunting season, was higher for the initially less well-fed Hardangervidda animals, and higher for both herds compared to that from a less disturbed herd (Forelhogna. We hypothezise that while standing still and alert in aggregated groups is risky, it is still more risky to move, but potentially more rewarding if a better habitat could be found. More well-fed Knutsho animals, which aggregated and stood still, conserved allready stored energy, compatible with a time minimizer risk aversive strategy. The Hardangervidda animals which were in poorer condition increased travelling time to an extent that suggested a risky nutrient miximizer strategy in the phase of stress.Effekter av

  9. Human disturbance provides foraging opportunities for birds in primary subalpine forest

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    DuBay, Shane G.; Hart Reeve, Andrew; Wu, Yongjie

    2017-01-01

    or Cettia major, and Heteroxenicus stellatus. This behavior is likely a modification of pre-existing interspecific foraging associations with pheasants and large mammals in the region. These larger animals disturb the earth and lower vegetation layers upon passage and while foraging, exposing previously...... opportunities. We cut and cleared small swaths of dense bamboo growth for an unrelated study. Multiple insectivorous species were recruited to the cleared areas, foraging extensively in the disturbed earth, often within 1 m of us. These species included Tarsiger chrysaeus, Tarsiger indicus, Cettia brunnifrons...

  10. Disturbance in boreal forest ecosystems: human impacts and natural processes. Proceedings of the International Boreal Forest Research Association 1997 annual meeting; 1997 August 4-7; Duluth, Minnesota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    The papers in these proceedings cover a wide range of topics related to human and natural disturbance processes in forests of the boreal zone in North America and Eurasia. Topics include historic and predicted landscape change; forest management; disturbance by insects, fire, air pollution, severe weather, and global climate change; and carbon cycling.

  11. Disturbing forest disturbances

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Volney, W.J.A.; Hirsch, K.G. [Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service, Northern Forestry Centre, Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    2005-10-01

    This paper described the role that disturbances play in maintaining the ecological integrity of Canadian boreal forests. Potential adaptation options to address the challenges that these disturbances present were also examined. Many forest ecosystems need fire for regeneration, while other forests rely on a cool, wet disintegration process driven by insects and commensal fungi feeding on trees to effect renewal. While there are characteristic natural, temporal and spatial patterns to these disturbances, recent work has demonstrated that the disturbances are being perturbed by climatic change that has been compounded by anthropogenic disturbances in forests. Fire influences species composition and age structure, regulates forest insects and diseases, affects nutrient cycling and energy fluxes, and maintains the productivity of different habitats. Longer fire seasons as a result of climatic change will lead to higher intensity fires that may more easily evade initial attacks and become problematic. Fire regimes elevated beyond the range of natural variation will have a dramatic effect on the regional distribution and functioning of forest ecosystems and pose a threat to the safety and prosperity of people. While it was acknowledged that if insect outbreaks were to be controlled on the entire forest estate, the productivity represented by dead wood would be lost, it was suggested that insects such as the forest tent caterpillar and the spruce bud worm may also pose a greater threat as the climate gets warmer and drier. Together with fungal associates, saproxylic arthropods are active in nutrient cycling and ultimately determine the fertility of forest sites. It was suggested that the production of an age class structure and forest mosaic would render the forest landscape less vulnerable to the more negative aspects of climate change on vegetation response. It was concluded that novel management design paradigms are needed to successfully reduce the risk from threats

  12. Insulin resistance alters islet morphology in nondiabetic humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mezza, Teresa; Muscogiuri, Giovanna; Sorice, Gian Pio

    2014-01-01

    Type 2 diabetes is characterized by poor glucose uptake in metabolic tissues and manifests when insulin secretion fails to cope with worsening insulin resistance. In addition to its effects on skeletal muscle, liver, and adipose tissue metabolism, it is evident that insulin resistance also affects...... pancreatic β-cells. To directly examine the alterations that occur in islet morphology as part of an adaptive mechanism to insulin resistance, we evaluated pancreas samples obtained during pancreatoduodenectomy from nondiabetic subjects who were insulin-resistant or insulin-sensitive. We also compared...... insulin sensitivity, insulin secretion, and incretin levels between the two groups. We report an increased islet size and an elevated number of β- and α-cells that resulted in an altered β-cell-to-α-cell area in the insulin- resistant group. Our data in this series of studies suggest that neogenesis from...

  13. Modeling human perception of orientation in altered gravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Torin K.; Newman, Michael C.; Oman, Charles M.; Merfeld, Daniel M.; Young, Laurence R.

    2015-01-01

    Altered gravity environments, such as those experienced by astronauts, impact spatial orientation perception, and can lead to spatial disorientation and sensorimotor impairment. To more fully understand and quantify the impact of altered gravity on orientation perception, several mathematical models have been proposed. The utricular shear, tangent, and the idiotropic vector models aim to predict static perception of tilt in hyper-gravity. Predictions from these prior models are compared to the available data, but are found to systematically err from the perceptions experimentally observed. Alternatively, we propose a modified utricular shear model for static tilt perception in hyper-gravity. Previous dynamic models of vestibular function and orientation perception are limited to 1 G. Specifically, they fail to predict the characteristic overestimation of roll tilt observed in hyper-gravity environments. To address this, we have proposed a modification to a previous observer-type canal-otolith interaction model based upon the hypothesis that the central nervous system (CNS) treats otolith stimulation in the utricular plane differently than stimulation out of the utricular plane. Here we evaluate our modified utricular shear and modified observer models in four altered gravity motion paradigms: (a) static roll tilt in hyper-gravity, (b) static pitch tilt in hyper-gravity, (c) static roll tilt in hypo-gravity, and (d) static pitch tilt in hypo-gravity. The modified models match available data in each of the conditions considered. Our static modified utricular shear model and dynamic modified observer model may be used to help quantitatively predict astronaut perception of orientation in altered gravity environments. PMID:25999822

  14. Modeling Human Perception of Orientation in Altered Gravity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Torin K. Clark

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Altered gravity environments, such as those experienced by astronauts, impact spatial orientation perception and can lead to spatial disorientation and sensorimotor impairment. To more fully understand and quantify the impact of altered gravity on orientation perception, several mathematical models have been proposed. The utricular shear, tangent, and the idiotropic vector models aim to predict static perception of tilt in hyper-gravity. Predictions from these prior models are compared to the available data, but are found to systematically err from the perceptions experimentally observed. Alternatively, we propose a modified utricular shear model for static tilt perception in hyper-gravity. Previous dynamic models of vestibular function and orientation perception are limited to 1 G. Specifically, they fail to predict the characteristic overestimation of roll tilt observed in hyper-gravity environments. To address this, we have proposed a modification to a previous observer-type canal otolith interaction model based upon the hypothesis that the central nervous system treats otolith stimulation in the utricular plane differently than stimulation out of the utricular plane. Here we evaluate our modified utricular shear and modified observer models in four altered gravity motion paradigms: a static roll tilt in hyper-gravity, b static pitch tilt in hyper-gravity, c static roll tilt in hypo-gravity, and d static pitch tilt in hypo-gravity. The modified models match available data in each of the conditions considered. Our static modified utricular shear model and dynamic modified observer model may be used to help quantitatively predict astronaut perception of orientation in altered gravity environments.

  15. Human-Derived Disturbance Estimation and Compensation (DEC) Method Lends Itself to a Modular Sensorimotor Control in a Humanoid Robot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lippi, Vittorio; Mergner, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    The high complexity of the human posture and movement control system represents challenges for diagnosis, therapy, and rehabilitation of neurological patients. We envisage that engineering-inspired, model-based approaches will help to deal with the high complexity of the human posture control system. Since the methods of system identification and parameter estimation are limited to systems with only a few DoF, our laboratory proposes a heuristic approach that step-by-step increases complexity when creating a hypothetical human-derived control systems in humanoid robots. This system is then compared with the human control in the same test bed, a posture control laboratory. The human-derived control builds upon the identified disturbance estimation and compensation (DEC) mechanism, whose main principle is to support execution of commanded poses or movements by compensating for external or self-produced disturbances such as gravity effects. In previous robotic implementation, up to 3 interconnected DEC control modules were used in modular control architectures separately for the sagittal plane or the frontal body plane and successfully passed balancing and movement tests. In this study we hypothesized that conflict-free movement coordination between the robot's sagittal and frontal body planes emerges simply from the physical embodiment, not necessarily requiring a full body control. Experiments were performed in the 14 DoF robot Lucy Posturob (i) demonstrating that the mechanical coupling from the robot's body suffices to coordinate the controls in the two planes when the robot produces movements and balancing responses in the intermediate plane, (ii) providing quantitative characterization of the interaction dynamics between body planes including frequency response functions (FRFs), as they are used in human postural control analysis, and (iii) witnessing postural and control stability when all DoFs are challenged together with the emergence of inter

  16. Ecosystem services altered by human changes in the nitrogen cycle: A new perspective for assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Human alteration of the nitrogen (N) cycle has produced benefits for health and well-being, but excess N has altered many ecosystems and degraded air and water quality. US regulations mandate protection of the environment in terms that directly connect to ecosystem services. Here...

  17. Human growth hormone alters carbohydrate storage in blood and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    MJP

    2015-06-02

    Jun 2, 2015 ... is the key hormone to maintain the glucose ... homeostasis is tissue-specific.[3] ... Key words: Human growth hormone, blood glucose, hepatic glycogen, hypoglycaemia, ..... diabetic and glycogenolytic effect, which help.

  18. Fenton reaction induced cancer in wild type rats recapitulates genomic alterations observed in human cancer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shinya Akatsuka

    Full Text Available Iron overload has been associated with carcinogenesis in humans. Intraperitoneal administration of ferric nitrilotriacetate initiates a Fenton reaction in renal proximal tubules of rodents that ultimately leads to a high incidence of renal cell carcinoma (RCC after repeated treatments. We performed high-resolution microarray comparative genomic hybridization to identify characteristics in the genomic profiles of this oxidative stress-induced rat RCCs. The results revealed extensive large-scale genomic alterations with a preference for deletions. Deletions and amplifications were numerous and sometimes fragmented, demonstrating that a Fenton reaction is a cause of such genomic alterations in vivo. Frequency plotting indicated that two of the most commonly altered loci corresponded to a Cdkn2a/2b deletion and a Met amplification. Tumor sizes were proportionally associated with Met expression and/or amplification, and clustering analysis confirmed our results. Furthermore, we developed a procedure to compare whole genomic patterns of the copy number alterations among different species based on chromosomal syntenic relationship. Patterns of the rat RCCs showed the strongest similarity to the human RCCs among five types of human cancers, followed by human malignant mesothelioma, an iron overload-associated cancer. Therefore, an iron-dependent Fenton chemical reaction causes large-scale genomic alterations during carcinogenesis, which may result in distinct genomic profiles. Based on the characteristics of extensive genome alterations in human cancer, our results suggest that this chemical reaction may play a major role during human carcinogenesis.

  19. Spatial and temporal dynamics of disturbance interactions along an ecological gradient

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher D. O' Connor

    2013-01-01

    Interactions among site conditions, disturbance events, and climate determine the patterns of forest species recruitment and mortality across landscapes. Forests of the American Southwest have undergone significant changes over a century of altered disturbance regimes, human land uses, and changing environmental conditions. Along steep vertical gradients such as those...

  20. Genetic alterations affecting cholesterol metabolism and human fertility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeAngelis, Anthony M; Roy-O'Reilly, Meaghan; Rodriguez, Annabelle

    2014-11-01

    Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) represent genetic variations among individuals in a population. In medicine, these small variations in the DNA sequence may significantly impact an individual's response to certain drugs or influence the risk of developing certain diseases. In the field of reproductive medicine, a significant amount of research has been devoted to identifying polymorphisms which may impact steroidogenesis and fertility. This review discusses current understanding of the effects of genetic variations in cholesterol metabolic pathways on human fertility that bridge novel linkages between cholesterol metabolism and reproductive health. For example, the role of the low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR) in cellular metabolism and human reproduction has been well studied, whereas there is now an emerging body of research on the role of the high-density lipoprotein (HDL) receptor scavenger receptor class B type I (SR-BI) in human lipid metabolism and female reproduction. Identifying and understanding how polymorphisms in the SCARB1 gene or other genes related to lipid metabolism impact human physiology is essential and will play a major role in the development of personalized medicine for improved diagnosis and treatment of infertility. © 2014 by the Society for the Study of Reproduction, Inc.

  1. Persistent organic pollutants alter DNA methylation during human adipocyte differentiation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dungen, van den Myrthe W.; Murk, Albertinka J.; Gils-Kok, van Dieuwertje; Steegenga, Wilma T.

    2017-01-01

    Ubiquitous persistent organic pollutants (POPs) can accumulate in humans where they might influence differentiation of adipocytes. The aim of this study was to investigate whether DNA methylation is one of the underlying mechanisms by which POPs affect adipocyte differentiation, and to what

  2. Somatic retrotransposition alters the genetic landscape of the human brain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baillie, J.K.; Barnett, M.W.; Upton, K.R.; Gerhardt, D.J.; Richmond, T.A.; De Sapio, F.; Brennan, P.; Rizzu, P.; Smith, S.; Fell, M.; Talbot, R.T.; Gustincich, S.; Freeman, T.C.; Mattick, J.S.; Hume, D.A.; Heutink, P.; Carninci, P.; Jeddeloh, J.A.; Faulkner, G.J.

    2011-01-01

    Retrotransposons are mobile genetic elements that use a germline 'copy-and-paste' mechanism to spread throughout metazoan genomes1. At least 50 per cent of the human genome is derived from retrotransposons, with three active families (L1, Alu and SVA) associated with insertional mutagenesis and

  3. Scaling disturbance instead of richness to better understand anthropogenic impacts on biodiversity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen J Mayor

    Full Text Available A primary impediment to understanding how species diversity and anthropogenic disturbance are related is that both diversity and disturbance can depend on the scales at which they are sampled. While the scale dependence of diversity estimation has received substantial attention, the scale dependence of disturbance estimation has been essentially overlooked. Here, we break from conventional examination of the diversity-disturbance relationship by holding the area over which species richness is estimated constant and instead manipulating the area over which human disturbance is measured. In the boreal forest ecoregion of Alberta, Canada, we test the dependence of species richness on disturbance scale, the scale-dependence of the intermediate disturbance hypothesis, and the consistency of these patterns in native versus exotic species and among human disturbance types. We related field observed species richness in 1 ha surveys of 372 boreal vascular plant communities to remotely sensed measures of human disturbance extent at two survey scales: local (1 ha and landscape (18 km2. Supporting the intermediate disturbance hypothesis, species richness-disturbance relationships were quadratic at both local and landscape scales of disturbance measurement. This suggests the shape of richness-disturbance relationships is independent of the scale at which disturbance is assessed, despite that local diversity is influenced by disturbance at different scales by different mechanisms, such as direct removal of individuals (local or indirect alteration of propagule supply (landscape. By contrast, predictions of species richness did depend on scale of disturbance measurement: with high local disturbance richness was double that under high landscape disturbance.

  4. Selectively altering belief formation in the human brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharot, Tali; Kanai, Ryota; Marston, David; Korn, Christoph W.; Rees, Geraint; Dolan, Raymond J.

    2012-01-01

    Humans form beliefs asymmetrically; we tend to discount bad news but embrace good news. This reduced impact of unfavorable information on belief updating may have important societal implications, including the generation of financial market bubbles, ill preparedness in the face of natural disasters, and overly aggressive medical decisions. Here, we selectively improved people’s tendency to incorporate bad news into their beliefs by disrupting the function of the left (but not right) inferior frontal gyrus using transcranial magnetic stimulation, thereby eliminating the engrained “good news/bad news effect.” Our results provide an instance of how selective disruption of regional human brain function paradoxically enhances the ability to incorporate unfavorable information into beliefs of vulnerability. PMID:23011798

  5. Comparative sensitivity to environmental variation and human disturbance of Asian tapirs (Tapirus indicus) and other wild ungulates in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynam, Antony J; Tantipisanuh, Naruemon; Chutipong, Wanlop; Ngoprasert, Dusit; Baker, Megan C; Cutter, Passanan; Gale, George; Kitamura, Shumpei; Steinmetz, Robert; Sukmasuang, Ronglarp; Thunhikorn, Somying

    2012-12-01

    Southeast Asia's tropical forests suffer the highest rates of deforestation and disturbance of any on Earth, with poorly understood impacts on native fauna. Asian tapirs (Tapirus indicus) are among the least studied of the large mammals in these forests. Using records from 9 camera trap surveys in 7 of the largest (>1000 km(2) ) protected area complexes, we assessed the influence of environmental variation and human-induced disturbance on tapir occurrence. Tapirs were detected at 13% of locations sampled, significantly associated with evergreen forest (P tapir presence 87% of the time. According to this model, tapir occurrence was positively influenced by annual rainfall and proximity to the forest edge. However, tapirs may not avoid edges but instead prefer wetter evergreen forest, a habitat type that tended to occur further from the forest edge at higher elevations in our particular study sites (P tapirs showed a range of differing responses. Tapirs are expected to be less sensitive to disturbance because they are not targets for hunting and trade, and are almost entirely active at night, so avoid peak traffic periods in parks. Tapir populations in Thailand may be more stable than in other parts of their global range because rates of forest loss have decreased >40% over the past 20 years. We recommend surveys to fill gaps in the understanding of the status in lesser-known protected areas, research to better understand the fine-scale environmental influences on behavior and habitats of tapirs, and other forest ungulates, and continued legal status for tapirs in the highest category of protection. © 2012 Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd, ISZS and IOZ/CAS.

  6. Alterations in tumour suppressor gene p53 in human gliomas from ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Unknown

    Alterations in the tumour suppressor p53 gene are among the most common defects seen in a variety of human cancers. ..... rangement of the EGF receptor gene in primary human brain tumors ... the INK4A gene in superficial bladder tumors.

  7. Epigenetic alterations differ in phenotypically distinct human neuroblastoma cell lines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yang, Qiwei; Tian, Yufeng; Ostler, Kelly R; Chlenski, Alexandre; Guerrero, Lisa J; Salwen, Helen R; Godley, Lucy A; Cohn, Susan L

    2010-01-01

    Epigenetic aberrations and a CpG island methylator phenotype have been shown to be associated with poor outcomes in children with neuroblastoma (NB). Seven cancer related genes (THBS-1, CASP8, HIN-1, TIG-1, BLU, SPARC, and HIC-1) that have been shown to have epigenetic changes in adult cancers and play important roles in the regulation of angiogenesis, tumor growth, and apoptosis were analyzed to investigate the role epigenetic alterations play in determining NB phenotype. Two NB cell lines (tumorigenic LA1-55n and non-tumorigenic LA1-5s) that differ in their ability to form colonies in soft agar and tumors in nude mice were used. Quantitative RNA expression analyses were performed on seven genes in LA1-5s, LA1-55n and 5-Aza-dC treated LA1-55n NB cell lines. The methylation status around THBS-1, HIN-1, TIG-1 and CASP8 promoters was examined using methylation specific PCR. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assay was used to examine histone modifications along the THBS-1 promoter. Luciferase assay was used to determine THBS-1 promoter activity. Cell proliferation assay was used to examine the effect of 5-Aza-dC on NB cell growth. The soft agar assay was used to determine the tumorigenicity. Promoter methylation values for THBS-1, HIN-1, TIG-1, and CASP8 were higher in LA1-55n cells compared to LA1-5s cells. Consistent with the promoter methylation status, lower levels of gene expression were detected in the LA1-55n cells. Histone marks associated with repressive chromatin states (H3K9Me3, H3K27Me3, and H3K4Me3) were identified in the THBS-1 promoter region in the LA1-55n cells, but not the LA1-5s cells. In contrast, the three histone codes associated with an active chromatin state (acetyl H3, acetyl H4, and H3K4Me3) were present in the THBS-1 promoter region in LA1-5s cells, but not the LA1-55n cells, suggesting that an accessible chromatin structure is important for THBS-1 expression. We also show that 5-Aza-dC treatment of LA1-55n cells alters the DNA methylation

  8. Human recreation alters behaviour profiles of non-breeding birds on open-coast sandy shores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlacher, Thomas A.; Nielsen, Tara; Weston, Michael A.

    2013-02-01

    Sandy beaches are primarily valued for their amenity and property values rather than for their ecological functions and properties. Some human usage of beaches potentially conflicts with the conservation and management of wildlife, such as beach-dwelling birds, on sandy shorelines. Because responses by birds to environmental change, including disturbance by humans, often involve behaviours that carry fitness costs, we quantify behaviour profiles of birds in relation to human occurrence along 200 km of sandy shoreline in Eastern Australia, including the large conservation area of Fraser Island. Disturbance to birds on these shores was considerable: 1) birds encountered motorized vehicles (cars, trucks, buses etc.) during 80% of focal bird observation bouts, 2) birds were flushed in over half (up to 86% in individual species) of all bouts, and 3) individuals spent, on average, one-third of their time on disturbance-related behaviours; this was particularly prevalent for Crested Terns (Thalasseus bergii) which were alert 42% of the time and spent 12% of their time escaping from human stimuli. Overall, this study demonstrated that motorized traffic is the prime agent of disturbance to birds on these beaches, resulting in frequent and time-consuming escape behaviours. These findings also emphasize that management of vehicle-based recreation on beaches needs to be re-aligned to meet conservation requirements in addition to providing leisure opportunities in National Parks and beyond; we identify some salient issue for this development: a) encouragement of social norms that promote environmentally benign beach use not involving motor vehicles, b) creation of spatial refuges for beach wildlife from traffic and other non-compatible uses, and c) investment in developing complementary management actions such as effective set-back distances.

  9. Acute encephalopathy with concurrent respiratory and metabolic disturbances in first known parenteral human administration of flunixin meglumine and acepromazine maleate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamali, Michael F; Wilson, Anwar C; Acquisto, Nicole M; Spillane, Linda; Schneider, Sandra M

    2013-08-01

    Flunexin is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug approved for veterinary use in horses and cattle. Acepromazine is a phenothiazine derivative used in horses, dogs, and cats. Human exposure to these substances is rare. We report a case of a human injection of two equine medications, flunixin and acepromazine, which resulted in altered mental status, respiratory alkalosis, gastrointestinal bleeding, and elevation of liver transaminases in a 43-year-old woman who worked as a horse trainer. The patient intentionally self-injected these medications and subsequently presented to the Emergency Department with altered mental status and lethargy. The patient required hospitalization for metabolic abnormalities, including respiratory alkalosis, and suffered a gastrointestinal bleed requiring blood transfusion. The patient ultimately recovered with supportive measures. We believe this to be the first case of concomitant injection of flunixin and acepromazine in a human. This report explains a case of parenteral administration of two equine medications and the subsequent complications in a patient that presented to the Emergency Department. Human exposure to veterinary medications cannot be predicted by their effect in animals due to variations in absorption, distribution, and metabolism. Physicians should be aware that individuals who work with animals may have access to large quantities of veterinary medicine. This case also exemplifies the challenges that Emergency Physicians face on a daily basis, and generates additional consideration for overdoses and intoxications from medications that are not considered commonplace in humans. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Flight initiation distances of nesting Piping Plovers (Charadrius melodus in response to human disturbance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joel G. Jorgensen

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Birds frequently interact with people when they occur in coupled human-ecological or anthropogenic environments, which makes the protection of legally protected species a challenge. Flight initiation distances (FIDs are often used to inform development of appropriate buffer distances required for human exclusion zones used to protect birds nesting in anthropogenic landscapes. Piping Plovers (Charadrius melodus are protected by the Endangered Species Act in the United States and often nest in areas used by humans. Studies evaluating Piping Plover FIDs are limited and implementation of exclusion zones has been inconsistent across the species' range. We measured Piping Plover response and FIDs to naturally occurring stimuli on public beaches at Lake McConaughy, Nebraska, USA. Piping Plover FIDs differed most by stimulus class (vehicle, human, dog, human with dog, Julian day, and hour of day. Piping Plover FIDs were greatest for dog and human with dog compared to humans and vehicles. For all types of stimuli, Piping Plover FIDs decreased over time during the nesting season and increased slightly during each day. In the majority of instances in which Piping Plovers left their nests, return times to the nest were relatively short (less than three minutes. These results suggest Piping Plovers become habituated to the presence of human-related stimuli over the course of a nesting season, but other explanations such as parental investment and risk allocation cannot be excluded. Additional research and improved guidance regarding the implementation of exclusion zones is needed so managers can implement effective protection programs in anthropogenic landscapes.

  11. Altering mucus rheology to "solidify" human mucus at the nanoscale.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel K Lai

    Full Text Available The ability of mucus to function as a protective barrier at mucosal surfaces rests on its viscous and elastic properties, which are not well understood at length scales relevant to pathogens and ultrafine environmental particles. Here we report that fresh, undiluted human cervicovaginal mucus (CVM transitions from an impermeable elastic barrier to non-adhesive objects sized 1 microm and larger to a highly permeable viscoelastic liquid to non-adhesive objects smaller than 500 nm in diameter. Addition of a nonionic detergent, present in vaginal gels, lubricants and condoms, caused CVM to behave as an impermeable elastic barrier to 200 and 500 nm particles, suggesting that the dissociation of hydrophobically-bundled mucin fibers created a finer elastic mucin mesh. Surprisingly, the macroscopic viscoelasticity, which is critical to proper mucus function, was unchanged. These findings provide important insight into the nanoscale structural and barrier properties of mucus, and how the penetration of foreign particles across mucus might be inhibited.

  12. Extracellular matrix alterations in human corneas with bullous keratopathy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ljubimov, A V; Burgeson, R E; Butkowski, R J

    1996-01-01

    PURPOSE. To uncover abnormalities of extracellular matrix (ECM) distribution in human corneas with pseudophakic and aphakic bullous keratopathy (PBK/ABK). METHODS. Indirect immunofluorescence with antibodies to 27 ECM components was used on frozen sections of 14 normal and 20 PBK/ABK corneas...... in some cases, correlated with decreased visual acuity. In normal central corneas, tenascin was never found. Other major ECM abnormalities in PBK/ABK corneas compared to normals included: discontinuous epithelial BM straining for laminin-1 (alpha 1 beta 1 gamma 1), entactin/nidogen and fibronectin......; accumulation of fibronectin and alpha 1-alpha 2 type IV collagen on the endothelial face of the Descemet's membrane; and abnormal deposition of stromal ECM (tenascin, fibronectin, decorin, types I, III, V, VI, VIII, XII, XIV collagen) and BM components (type IV, collagen, perlecan, bamacan, laminin-1, entactin...

  13. Paracetamol-induced spindle disturbances in V79 cells with and without expression of human CYP1A2

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, K G; Poulsen, H E; Doehmer, J

    1996-01-01

    Spindle disturbing effects in terms of c-mitosis and cytotoxicity of paracetamol were investigated in two Chinese hamster V79 cell lines, one of which (V79MZh1A2) was transfected with human CYP1A2. This enzyme catalyses the oxidative formation of the reactive paracetamol metabolite, NAPQI, believed...... to initiate hepatoxicity by covalent binding to proteins after overdose. In the native V79 cell line paracetamol increased c-mitosis frequency in a concentration dependent manner from 8.7 + or - 3.5% (control) to 66 + or - 18% at 20 mM. A significant increase to 13.3 + or - 3.5% was first seen at 2.5 m......M in the native cell line (Pparacetamol. At 5 mM paracetamol the c-mitosis frequency was 14.4 + or - 5.0% and 19.0 + or - 3...

  14. Human diseases with genetically altered DNA repair processes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cleaver, J.E.; Bootsma, D.; Friedberg, E.

    1975-01-01

    DNA repair of single-strand breaks (produced by ionizing radiation) and of base damage (produced by ultraviolet (uv) light) are two repair mechanisms that most mammalian cells possess. Genetic defects in these repair mechanisms are exemplified by cells from the human premature-aging disease, progeria, which fail to rejoin single-strand breaks, and the skin disease, xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), which exhibits high actinic carcinogenesis and involves failure to repair base damage. In terms of the response of XP cells, many chemical carcinogens can be classified as either x-ray-like (i.e., they cause damage that XP cells can repair) or uv-like (i.e., they cause damage that XP cells cannot repair). The first group contains some of the more strongly carcinogenic chemicals (e.g., alkylating agents). XP occurs in at least two clinical forms, and somatic cell hybridization indicates at least three complementation groups. In order to identify cell lines from various different laboratories unambiguously, a modified nomenclature of XP lines is proposed. (U.S.)

  15. Human diseases with genetically altered DNA repair processes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cleaver, J.E.; Bootsma, D.; Friedberg, E.

    1975-01-01

    DNA repair of single-strand breaks (produced by ionizing radiation) and of base damage (produced by ultraviolet (UV) light) are two repair mechanisms that most mammalian cells possess. Genetic defects in these repair mechanisms are exemplified by cells from the human premature-aging disease, progeria, which fail to rejoin single-strand breaks, and the skin disease, xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), which exhibits high actinic carcinogenesis and involves failure to repair base damage. In terms of the response of XP cells, many chemical carcinogens can be classified as either X-ray-like (i.e., they cause damage that XP cells can repair) or UV-like (i.e., they cause damage that XP cells cannot repair). The first group contains some of the more strongly carcinogenic chemicals (e.g., alkylating agents). XP occurs in at least two clinical forms, and somatic cell hybridization indicates at least three complementation groups. In order to identify cell lines from various different laboratories unambiguously, a modified nomenclature of XP lines is proposed

  16. Opium and heroin alter biochemical parameters of human's serum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kouros, Divsalar; Tahereh, Haghpanah; Mohammadreza, Afarinesh; Minoo, Mahmoudi Zarandi

    2010-05-01

    Iran is a significant consumer of opium, and, generally, of opioids, in the world. Addiction is one of the important issues of the 21st century and is an imperative issue in Iran. Long-term consumption of opioids affects homeostasis. To determine the effects of opium and heroin consumption on serum biochemical parameters. In a cross-sectional study, subjects who had consumed heroin (n = 35) or opium (n = 42) for more than two years and 35 nonaddict volunteers as the control group were compared in regard to various biochemical parameters such as fasting blood sugar (FBS), Na(+), K(+), Ca(2+), blood urea nitrogen (BUN), uric acid (UA), triglyceride (TG), cholesterol, creatinine, and total protein. Chromatography was used to confirm opioid consumption, and the concentration of biochemical parameters was determined by laboratory diagnostic tests on serum. No significant differences were found in Na(+), Ca(2+), BUN, UA, TG, creatinine, and total protein concentrations among the three groups. FBS, K(+), and UA levels were significantly lower in opium addicts compared to the control group. Serum Ca(2+) concentration of heroin addicts showed a significant decrease compared to that of the control group. Both addict groups showed a significant decrease in serum cholesterol levels. Chronic use of opium and heroin can change serum FBS, K(+), Ca(2+), UA, and cholesterol. This study, one of few on the effects of opium on serum biochemical parameters in human subjects, has the potential to contribute to the investigation of new approaches for further basic studies.

  17. Microtubules Growth Rate Alteration in Human Endothelial Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irina B. Alieva

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available To understand how microtubules contribute to the dynamic reorganization of the endothelial cell (EC cytoskeleton, we established an EC model expressing EB3-GFP, a protein that marks microtubule plus-ends. Using this model, we were able to measure microtubule growth rate at the centrosome region and near the cell periphery of a single human EC and in the EC monolayer. We demonstrate that the majority of microtubules in EC are dynamic, the growth rate of their plus-ends is highest in the internal cytoplasm, in the region of the centrosome. Growth rate of microtubule plus-ends decreases from the cell center toward the periphery. Our data suggest the existing mechanism(s of local regulation of microtubule plus-ends growth in EC. Microtubule growth rate in the internal cytoplasm of EC in the monolayer is lower than that of single EC suggesting the regulatory effect of cell-cell contacts. Centrosomal microtubule growth rate distribution in single EC indicated the presence of two subpopulations of microtubules with “normal” (similar to those in monolayer EC and “fast” (three times as much growth rates. Our results indicate functional interactions between cell-cell contacts and microtubules.

  18. Thermal Stimulation Alters Cervical Spinal Cord Functional Connectivity in Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, Kenneth A; Sentis, Amy I; Bernadel-Huey, Olivia N; Chen, Yufen; Wang, Xue; Parrish, Todd B; Mackey, Sean

    2018-01-15

    The spinal cord has an active role in the modulation and transmission of the neural signals traveling between the body and the brain. Recent advancements in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) have made the in vivo examination of spinal cord function in humans now possible. This technology has been recently extended to the investigation of resting state functional networks in the spinal cord, leading to the identification of distinct patterns of spinal cord functional connectivity. In this study, we expand on the previous work and further investigate resting state cervical spinal cord functional connectivity in healthy participants (n = 15) using high resolution imaging coupled with both seed-based functional connectivity analyses and graph theory-based metrics. Within spinal cord segment functional connectivity was present between the left and right ventral horns (bilateral motor network), left and right dorsal horns (bilateral sensory network), and the ipsilateral ventral and dorsal horns (unilateral sensory-motor network). Functional connectivity between the spinal cord segments was less apparent with the connectivity centered at the region of interest and spanning spinal cord functional network was demonstrated to be state-dependent as thermal stimulation of the right ventrolateral forearm resulted in significant disruption of the bilateral sensory network, increased network global efficiency, and decreased network modularity. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Do receptors get pregnant too? Adrenergic receptor alterations in human pregnancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smiley, R M; Finster, M

    1996-01-01

    In this review we discuss adrenergic receptor number and function during pregnancy, with emphasis on evidence that pregnancy results in specific receptor alterations from the nonpregnant state. Changes in adrenergic receptor function or distribution in vascular smooth muscle may be in part responsible for the decreased vascular responsiveness seen in human pregnancy, and the lack of the normal alterations may be a part of the syndromes of gestational hypertension, including preeclampsia-eclampsia. The onset of labor may be influenced by adrenergic modulation, and receptor or postreceptor level molecular alterations may trigger or facilitate normal or preterm labor. Human studies are emphasized when possible to assess the role of adrenergic signal transduction regulation in the physiology and pathophysiology of normal and complicated human pregnancy.

  20. Concepts and Challenges in Disturbance Hydrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebel, B. A.; Mirus, B. B.

    2016-12-01

    Landscape disturbances are increasing, often promoted and enhanced by climate shifts and human activities. Insect infestations, wildfires, earthquakes, urban development, forest harvest, mineral and petroleum resource extraction, and hurricanes are common landscape disturbances that can have profound hydrologic consequences. These cause relatively abrupt changes in the landscape, which alter local processes on plots and hillslopes in addition to coarser-scale processes across watersheds through cross-scale interactions. Shifts in soil properties and cover of vegetation and leaf litter change the water storage or buffering capacity as well as the hydrologic functional connectivity across multiple scales. These changes increase the risk of catastrophic flooding, erosion, and mass movements that degrade water resources, ecosystem services, and protection from hydrologically driven natural hazards. Although it is imperative that we understand the hydrologic effects of these disturbances, several major barriers exist. Four challenges are: (i) overlapping disturbances in space and time with unknown recovery trajectories, (ii) a paucity of long-term recovery records (>5 years duration), (iii) inefficacy of traditional modeling and parameterization approaches, and (iv) lack of pre-disturbance characterization. Examples of these challenges will be presented along with proposed opportunities for improved mechanistic understanding of processes and thresholds in disturbance hydrology.

  1. Differential flight responses of spring staging Teal Anas crecca and Wigeon A. penelope to human vs. natural disturbance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bregnballe, Thomas; Speich, Charlotte; Horsten, Anders

    2017-01-01

    (anglers, cyclists, farming activity) on the flight responses and displacement distances of ducks within uniform habitat along a public path were compared with the birds’ reaction to natural stimuli such as mammals or birds of prey. Excluding the controlled disturbance by a pedestrian, undertaken as part...... of the study, the main cause of flushing in Wigeon was a response to the movements of birds of prey and other birds, especially Lapwings Vanellus vanellus performing flight displays. For Teal, birds of prey accounted for around half of the flushes, with other birds accounting for one third of the flushes....... Wigeon and Teal were displaced significantly farther by human activities than by natural causes. We tested whether the ducks reacted differently to natural disturbances shortly after disturbance by a pedestrian by comparing response patterns to natural stimuli within the first hour following disturbance...

  2. Differential reactions to anthropogenic disturbance by two ground ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Both ABO and KG significantly altered their behavioural responses to disturbance from pre-breeding to breeding. These results emphasise the need to have a buffer zone surrounding breeding areas excluding human presence to allow for the successful breeding of ABO. Keywords: African Black Oystercatcher, buffer zone, ...

  3. Transformative Mediation and Human Rights: the Possibility of Insertion of Alterity in the Conflict

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Romulo Rhemo Palitot Braga

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper intends to present the transformative mediation, from the theoretical perspective of Luis Alberto Warat, as a proposal for promoting a culture of human rights, seen articular in your exercise the individuals's autonomy and the inclusion of alterity in the conflict. It is from this last element that will be further articulated discussion between human rights and mediation through the debate on the recognition of equality and difference, currently so expensive for human rights. The transformative mediation aims through a dialogic relationship building with the other, a participatory approach and shared the problems and dilemmas common to human and social life.

  4. Assessment of ecological and human health risks of heavy metal contamination in agriculture soils disturbed by pipeline construction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Peng; Xiao, Jun; Wang, Yafeng; Chen, Liding

    2014-02-28

    The construction of large-scale infrastructures such as nature gas/oil pipelines involves extensive disturbance to regional ecosystems. Few studies have documented the soil degradation and heavy metal contamination caused by pipeline construction. In this study, chromium (Cr), cadmium (Cd), copper (Cu), nickel (Ni), lead (Pb) and zinc (Zn) levels were evaluated using Index of Geo-accumulation (Igeo) and Potential Ecological Risk Index (RI) values, and human health risk assessments were used to elucidate the level and spatial variation of heavy metal pollution risks. The results showed that the impact zone of pipeline installation on soil heavy metal contamination was restricted to pipeline right-of-way (RoW), which had higher Igeo of Cd, Cu, Ni and Pb than that of 20 m and 50 m. RI showed a declining tendency in different zones as follows: trench > working zone > piling area > 20 m > 50 m. Pipeline RoW resulted in higher human health risks than that of 20 m and 50 m, and children were more susceptible to non-carcinogenic hazard risk. Cluster analysis showed that Cu, Ni, Pb and Cd had similar sources, drawing attention to the anthropogenic activity. The findings in this study should help better understand the type, degree, scope and sources of heavy metal pollution from pipeline construction to reduce pollutant emissions, and are helpful in providing a scientific basis for future risk management.

  5. Disturbed α-Cell Function in Mice with β-Cell Specific Overexpression of Human Islet Amyloid Polypeptide

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bo Ahrén

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Exogenous administration of islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP has been shown to inhibit both insulin and glucagon secretion. This study examined α-cell function in mice with β-cell specific overexpression of human IAPP (hIAPP after an oral protein gavage (75 mg whey protein/mouse. Baseline glucagon levels were higher in transgenic mice (41±4.0 pg/mL, n=6 than in wildtype animals (19±5.1 pg/mL, n=5, P=.015. In contrast, the glucagon response to protein was impaired in transgenic animals (21±2.7 pg/mL in transgenic mice versus 38±5.7 pg/mL in wildtype mice at 15 minutes; P=.027. Baseline insulin levels did not differ between the groups, while the insulin response, as the glucagon response, was impaired after protein challenge (P=.018. Glucose levels were not different between the groups and did not change significantly after protein gavage. Acetaminophen was given through gavage to the animals (2 mg/mouse to estimate gastric emptying. The plasma acetaminophen profile was similar in the two groups of mice. We conclude that disturbances in glucagon secretion exist in mice with β-cell specific overexpression of human IAPP, which are not secondary to changes in gastric emptying. The reduced glucagon response to protein challenge may reflect a direct inhibitory influence of hIAPP on glucagon secretion.

  6. Assessment of Ecological and Human Health Risks of Heavy Metal Contamination in Agriculture Soils Disturbed by Pipeline Construction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng Shi

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The construction of large-scale infrastructures such as nature gas/oil pipelines involves extensive disturbance to regional ecosystems. Few studies have documented the soil degradation and heavy metal contamination caused by pipeline construction. In this study, chromium (Cr, cadmium (Cd, copper (Cu, nickel (Ni, lead (Pb and zinc (Zn levels were evaluated using Index of Geo-accumulation (Igeo and Potential Ecological Risk Index (RI values, and human health risk assessments were used to elucidate the level and spatial variation of heavy metal pollution risks. The results showed that the impact zone of pipeline installation on soil heavy metal contamination was restricted to pipeline right-of-way (RoW, which had higher Igeo of Cd, Cu, Ni and Pb than that of 20 m and 50 m. RI showed a declining tendency in different zones as follows: trench > working zone > piling area > 20 m > 50 m. Pipeline RoW resulted in higher human health risks than that of 20 m and 50 m, and children were more susceptible to non-carcinogenic hazard risk. Cluster analysis showed that Cu, Ni, Pb and Cd had similar sources, drawing attention to the anthropogenic activity. The findings in this study should help better understand the type, degree, scope and sources of heavy metal pollution from pipeline construction to reduce pollutant emissions, and are helpful in providing a scientific basis for future risk management.

  7. Design of Human – Machine Interface and Altering of Pelvic Obliquity with RGR Trainer

    OpenAIRE

    Pietrusinski, Maciej; Unluhisarcikli, Ozer; Mavroidis, Constantinos; Cajigas, Iahn; Bonato, Paolo

    2011-01-01

    The Robotic Gait Rehabilitation (RGR) Trainer targets secondary gait deviations in stroke survivors undergoing rehabilitation. Using an impedance control strategy and a linear electromagnetic actuator, the device generates a force field to control pelvic obliquity through a Human-Machine Interface (i.e. a lower body exoskeleton). Herein we describe the design of the RGR Trainer Human-Machine Interface (HMI) and we demonstrate the system’s ability to alter the pattern of movement of the pelvis...

  8. Dynamic gene expression response to altered gravity in human T cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thiel, Cora S; Hauschild, Swantje; Huge, Andreas; Tauber, Svantje; Lauber, Beatrice A; Polzer, Jennifer; Paulsen, Katrin; Lier, Hartwin; Engelmann, Frank; Schmitz, Burkhard; Schütte, Andreas; Layer, Liliana E; Ullrich, Oliver

    2017-07-12

    We investigated the dynamics of immediate and initial gene expression response to different gravitational environments in human Jurkat T lymphocytic cells and compared expression profiles to identify potential gravity-regulated genes and adaptation processes. We used the Affymetrix GeneChip® Human Transcriptome Array 2.0 containing 44,699 protein coding genes and 22,829 non-protein coding genes and performed the experiments during a parabolic flight and a suborbital ballistic rocket mission to cross-validate gravity-regulated gene expression through independent research platforms and different sets of control experiments to exclude other factors than alteration of gravity. We found that gene expression in human T cells rapidly responded to altered gravity in the time frame of 20 s and 5 min. The initial response to microgravity involved mostly regulatory RNAs. We identified three gravity-regulated genes which could be cross-validated in both completely independent experiment missions: ATP6V1A/D, a vacuolar H + -ATPase (V-ATPase) responsible for acidification during bone resorption, IGHD3-3/IGHD3-10, diversity genes of the immunoglobulin heavy-chain locus participating in V(D)J recombination, and LINC00837, a long intergenic non-protein coding RNA. Due to the extensive and rapid alteration of gene expression associated with regulatory RNAs, we conclude that human cells are equipped with a robust and efficient adaptation potential when challenged with altered gravitational environments.

  9. Short-term fasting alters cytochrome P450-mediated drug metabolism in humans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lammers, Laureen A.; Achterbergh, Roos; de Vries, Emmely M.; van Nierop, F. Samuel; Klümpen, Heinz-Josef; Soeters, Maarten R.; Boelen, Anita; Romijn, Johannes A.; Mathôt, Ron A. A.

    2015-01-01

    Experimental studies indicate that short-term fasting alters drug metabolism. However, the effects of short-term fasting on drug metabolism in humans need further investigation. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of short-term fasting (36 h) on P450-mediated drug

  10. Human disturbance and upward expansion of plants in a warming climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dainese, Matteo; Aikio, Sami; Hulme, Philip E.; Bertolli, Alessio; Prosser, Filippo; Marini, Lorenzo

    2017-08-01

    Climate change is expected to trigger an upward expansion of plants in mountain regions and, although there is strong evidence that many native species have already shifted their distributions to higher elevations, little is known regarding how fast non-native species might respond to climate change. By analysing 131,394 occurrence records of 1,334 plant species collected over 20 years in the European Alps, we found that non-natives are spreading upwards approximately twice as fast as natives. Whereas the spread of natives was enhanced by traits favouring longer dispersal distances, this was not the case for non-natives. This was due to the non-native species pool already being strongly biased towards species that had traits facilitating spread. A large proportion of native and non-native species seemed to be able to spread upwards faster than the current velocity of climate change. In particular, long-distance dispersal events and proximity to roads proved to be key drivers for the observed rapid spread. Our findings highlight that invasions by non-native species into native alpine communities are a potentially significant additional pressure on these vulnerable ecosystems that are already likely to suffer dramatic vegetation changes with ongoing warming and increasing human activity in mountain regions.

  11. Effect of human disturbance on seed and seedling distribution of the Andean Oak (Quercus humboldtii Bonpl., Fagaceae) in the Colombian Eastern Cordillera

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Guerrero Rodriguez, Sandra Bibiana; Paz Camacho, Erika Andrea; Parrado Rosselli, Angela

    2010-01-01

    Animals affect the spatial occupation patterns of tropical forest plants throughout the seed dispersal they perform. Therefore, changes in vertebrate populations by human disturbance might affect re generation dynamics of plant species. We studied differences in the spatial distribution of seeds and seedlings of the Andean oak (Quercus humboldtii) between two nearby forests with contrasting levels of anthropogenic influence in the Colombian Andes. Density and spatial distribution of seedlings were evaluated in 490 and 484 1 m2 plots located in a 28 ha area, in the high and low disturbed site, respectively. In each plot, all seedlings found were sampled and classified into three age categories. Density and spatial distribution of seeds were evaluated in 0.25 m 2s ubplots placed in the same plots described above. Results showed a higher number and density of seedlings in the high disturbed site, as well as a marked decrease in seedling density as age increases. Distances to the nearest neighbour were shorter in the high disturbed site for all seedlings and each age category, in contrast to the low disturbed site. Indexes of spatial distribution indicate an aggregated pattern in the most disturbed site, while a uniform pattern in the low disturbed one. Seeds also exhibited an aggregated pattern in the high disturbed site and a higher seed predation by invertebrates. Results seemed to be a consequence of forest fragmentation and a decrease of vertebrate seed dispersers, seed predators and herbivores associated to the regeneration processes of the species. These results provide important information for the forest management and restoration activities, since in order to maintain plant populations in the long term, presence and viable populations of seed dispersers should be also maintained.

  12. Evidences that human disturbance simplify the ant fauna associated a Stachytarpheta glabra Cham. (Verbenaceae compromising the benefits of ant-plant mutualism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    BC. Barbosa

    Full Text Available Interaction among species, like ants and plants through extrafloral nectaries (EFNs, are important components of ecological communities’ evolution. However, the effect of human disturbance on such specific interactions and its ecological consequences is poorly understood. This study evaluated the outcomes of mutualism between ants and the EFN-bearing plant Stachytarpheta glabra under anthropogenic disturbance. We compared the arthropod fauna composition between two groups of twenty plant individuals, one in an area disturbed by human activities and one in a preserved area. We also check the plant investment in herbivory defense and the consequential leaf damage by herbivore. Our results indicate that such disturbances cause simplification of the associated fauna and lack of proper ant mutualist. This led to four times more herbivory on plants of disturbed areas, despite the equal amount of EFN and ant visitors and low abundance of herbivores. The high pressure of herbivory may difficult the re-establishment of S. glabra, an important pioneer species in ferruginous fields, therefore it may affect resilience of this fragile ecological community.

  13. Heterophil/Lymphocyte Alterations as a Measure of Stress in American Alligators in Relation to Anthropogenic Disturbance in a Louisiana Intermediate Marsh

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher M. Murray

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Numerous anthropogenic factors represent environmental threats to Gulf Coast wetland ecosystems and associated fauna. American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis have been subject to long-term management and used as ecological and physiological indicators of habitat quality in response to anthropogenic events and stochastic natural disasters. The present study monitored heterophil to lymphocyte ratios (an indicator of stress, in American alligators in a Louisiana intermediate marsh from 2009 to 2011, a time period that coincides with an oil inundation event that occurred in 2011. Sixteen alligators were observed and processed morphometrically (total length, snout-vent length and body mass. Heterophil to lymphocyte ratios were negatively correlated with size, suggesting larger American alligators were physiologically more resilient to the disturbance, more able to actively avoid these poor conditions, or are less affected by localized disturbance.

  14. Leptospira interrogans causes quantitative and morphological disturbances in adherens junctions and other biological groups of proteins in human endothelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Hiromi; Coburn, Jenifer

    2017-07-01

    Pathogenic Leptospira transmits from animals to humans, causing the zoonotic life-threatening infection called leptospirosis. This infection is reported worldwide with higher risk in tropical regions. Symptoms of leptospirosis range from mild illness to severe illness such as liver damage, kidney failure, respiratory distress, meningitis, and fatal hemorrhagic disease. Invasive species of Leptospira rapidly disseminate to multiple tissues where this bacterium damages host endothelial cells, increasing vascular permeability. Despite the burden in humans and animals, the pathogenic mechanisms of Leptospira infection remain to be elucidated. The pathogenic leptospires adhere to endothelial cells and permeabilize endothelial barriers in vivo and in vitro. In this study, human endothelial cells were infected with the pathogenic L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni or the saprophyte L. biflexa serovar Patoc to investigate morphological changes and other distinctive phenotypes of host cell proteins by fluorescence microscopy. Among those analyzed, 17 proteins from five biological classes demonstrated distinctive phenotypes in morphology and/or signal intensity upon infection with Leptospira. The affected biological groups include: 1) extracellular matrix, 2) intercellular adhesion molecules and cell surface receptors, 3) intracellular proteins, 4) cell-cell junction proteins, and 5) a cytoskeletal protein. Infection with the pathogenic strain most profoundly disturbed the biological structures of adherens junctions (VE-cadherin and catenins) and actin filaments. Our data illuminate morphological disruptions and reduced signals of cell-cell junction proteins and filamentous actin in L. interrogans-infected endothelial cells. In addition, Leptospira infection, regardless of pathogenic status, influenced other host proteins belonging to multiple biological classes. Our data suggest that this zoonotic agent may damage endothelial cells via multiple cascades or pathways

  15. Leptospira interrogans causes quantitative and morphological disturbances in adherens junctions and other biological groups of proteins in human endothelial cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiromi Sato

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Pathogenic Leptospira transmits from animals to humans, causing the zoonotic life-threatening infection called leptospirosis. This infection is reported worldwide with higher risk in tropical regions. Symptoms of leptospirosis range from mild illness to severe illness such as liver damage, kidney failure, respiratory distress, meningitis, and fatal hemorrhagic disease. Invasive species of Leptospira rapidly disseminate to multiple tissues where this bacterium damages host endothelial cells, increasing vascular permeability. Despite the burden in humans and animals, the pathogenic mechanisms of Leptospira infection remain to be elucidated. The pathogenic leptospires adhere to endothelial cells and permeabilize endothelial barriers in vivo and in vitro. In this study, human endothelial cells were infected with the pathogenic L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni or the saprophyte L. biflexa serovar Patoc to investigate morphological changes and other distinctive phenotypes of host cell proteins by fluorescence microscopy. Among those analyzed, 17 proteins from five biological classes demonstrated distinctive phenotypes in morphology and/or signal intensity upon infection with Leptospira. The affected biological groups include: 1 extracellular matrix, 2 intercellular adhesion molecules and cell surface receptors, 3 intracellular proteins, 4 cell-cell junction proteins, and 5 a cytoskeletal protein. Infection with the pathogenic strain most profoundly disturbed the biological structures of adherens junctions (VE-cadherin and catenins and actin filaments. Our data illuminate morphological disruptions and reduced signals of cell-cell junction proteins and filamentous actin in L. interrogans-infected endothelial cells. In addition, Leptospira infection, regardless of pathogenic status, influenced other host proteins belonging to multiple biological classes. Our data suggest that this zoonotic agent may damage endothelial cells via multiple cascades or

  16. Leptospira interrogans causes quantitative and morphological disturbances in adherens junctions and other biological groups of proteins in human endothelial cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Hiromi

    2017-01-01

    Pathogenic Leptospira transmits from animals to humans, causing the zoonotic life-threatening infection called leptospirosis. This infection is reported worldwide with higher risk in tropical regions. Symptoms of leptospirosis range from mild illness to severe illness such as liver damage, kidney failure, respiratory distress, meningitis, and fatal hemorrhagic disease. Invasive species of Leptospira rapidly disseminate to multiple tissues where this bacterium damages host endothelial cells, increasing vascular permeability. Despite the burden in humans and animals, the pathogenic mechanisms of Leptospira infection remain to be elucidated. The pathogenic leptospires adhere to endothelial cells and permeabilize endothelial barriers in vivo and in vitro. In this study, human endothelial cells were infected with the pathogenic L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni or the saprophyte L. biflexa serovar Patoc to investigate morphological changes and other distinctive phenotypes of host cell proteins by fluorescence microscopy. Among those analyzed, 17 proteins from five biological classes demonstrated distinctive phenotypes in morphology and/or signal intensity upon infection with Leptospira. The affected biological groups include: 1) extracellular matrix, 2) intercellular adhesion molecules and cell surface receptors, 3) intracellular proteins, 4) cell-cell junction proteins, and 5) a cytoskeletal protein. Infection with the pathogenic strain most profoundly disturbed the biological structures of adherens junctions (VE-cadherin and catenins) and actin filaments. Our data illuminate morphological disruptions and reduced signals of cell-cell junction proteins and filamentous actin in L. interrogans-infected endothelial cells. In addition, Leptospira infection, regardless of pathogenic status, influenced other host proteins belonging to multiple biological classes. Our data suggest that this zoonotic agent may damage endothelial cells via multiple cascades or pathways

  17. Impact of DNA mismatch repair system alterations on human fertility and related treatments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Min-hao; Liu, Shu-yuan; Wang, Ning; Wu, Yan; Jin, Fan

    2016-01-01

    DNA mismatch repair (MMR) is one of the biological pathways, which plays a critical role in DNA homeostasis, primarily by repairing base-pair mismatches and insertion/deletion loops that occur during DNA replication. MMR also takes part in other metabolic pathways and regulates cell cycle arrest. Defects in MMR are associated with genomic instability, predisposition to certain types of cancers and resistance to certain therapeutic drugs. Moreover, genetic and epigenetic alterations in the MMR system demonstrate a significant relationship with human fertility and related treatments, which helps us to understand the etiology and susceptibility of human infertility. Alterations in the MMR system may also influence the health of offspring conceived by assisted reproductive technology in humans. However, further studies are needed to explore the specific mechanisms by which the MMR system may affect human infertility. This review addresses the physiological mechanisms of the MMR system and associations between alterations of the MMR system and human fertility and related treatments, and potential effects on the next generation.

  18. Time Average Holography Study of Human Tympanic Membrane with Altered Middle Ear Ossicular Chain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Jeffrey T.; Ravicz, Michael E.; Rosowski, John J.; Hulli, Nesim; Hernandez-Montes, Maria S.; Furlong, Cosme

    2009-02-01

    Computer-assisted time average holographic interferometry was used to study the vibration of the human tympanic membrane (TM) in cadaveric temporal bones before and after alterations of the ossicular chain. Simultaneous laser Doppler vibrometer measurements of stapes velocity were performed to estimate the conductive hearing loss caused by ossicular alterations. The quantified TM motion described from holographic images was correlated with stapes velocity to define relations between TM motion and stapes velocity in various ossicular disorders. The results suggest that motions of the TM are relatively uncoupled from stapes motion at frequencies above 1000 Hz.

  19. Distribution of a Community of Mammals in Relation to Roads and Other Human Disturbances in Gabon, Central Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanthomme, Hadrien; Kolowski, Joseph; Korte, Lisa; Alonso, Alfonso

    2013-01-01

    Abstract We present the first community-level study of the associations of both roads and other human disturbances with the distribution of mammals in Gabon (central Africa). Our study site was in an oil concession within a littoral mosaic landscape. We conducted surveys along 199 line transects and installed camera traps on 99 of these transects to document mammal presence and abundance. We used generalized linear mixed-effect models to document associations between variables related to the ecosystem (land cover, topography, and hydrology), roads (coating, width of rights of way, condition, type of vehicle used on the road, traffic level, affiliation of users, and general type of road), and other human disturbances (urbanization, agriculture, hunting, logging, gathering, and industrial activities) and the abundance or presence of 17 species or groups of mammals including elephant (Loxodonta cyclotis), buffalo (Syncerus caffer), sitatunga (Tragelaphus spekei), red river hog (Potamochoerus porcus), smaller ungulates, gorilla (Gorilla gorilla), chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes), side-striped jackal (Canis adustus), carnivores, monkeys, and large rodents. Some types of roads and other human disturbances were negatively associated with the abundance or presence of elephants, buffalos, gorillas, sitatungas, some monkeys, and duikers. The pattern of associations of mammals with roads and other human disturbances was diverse and included positive associations with road presence (red river hog, some monkeys, and duikers), agriculture (sitatunga, small carnivores, and large rodents) and industrial activities (sitatunga, red river hog, red duikers, and side-striped jackal). Our results suggest that the community of mammals we studied was mostly affected by hunting, agriculture, and urbanization, which are facilitated by road presence. We recommend increased regulation of agriculture, hunting, and road building in the area. Distribución de una Comunidad de Mamíferos en Relaci

  20. Inhibition of α-adrenergic tone disturbs the distribution of blood flow in the exercising human limb.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heinonen, Ilkka; Wendelin-Saarenhovi, Maria; Kaskinoro, Kimmo; Knuuti, Juhani; Scheinin, Mika; Kalliokoski, Kari K

    2013-07-15

    The role of neuronal regulation of human cardiovascular function remains incompletely elucidated, especially during exercise. Here we, by positron emission tomography, monitored tissue-specific blood flow (BF) changes in nine healthy young men during femoral arterial infusions of norepinephrine (NE) and phentolamine. At rest, the α-adrenoceptor agonist NE reduced BF by ~40%, similarly in muscles (from 3.2 ± 1.9 to 1.4 ± 0.3 ml·min(-1)·100 g(-1) in quadriceps femoris muscle), bone (from 1.1 ± 0.4 to 0.5 ± 0.2 ml·min(-1)·100 g(-1)) and adipose tissue (AT) (from 1.2 ± 0.7 to 0.7 ± 0.3 ml·min(-1)·100 g(-1)). During exercise, NE reduced exercising muscle BF by ~16%. BF in AT was reduced similarly as rest. The α-adrenoceptor antagonist phentolamine increased BF similarly in the different muscles and other tissues of the limb at rest. During exercise, BF in inactive muscle was increased 3.4-fold by phentolamine compared with exercise without drug, but BF in exercising muscles was not influenced. Bone and AT (P = 0.055) BF were also increased by phentolamine in the exercise condition. NE increased and phentolamine decreased oxygen extraction in the limb during exercise. We conclude that inhibition of α-adrenergic tone markedly disturbs the distribution of BF and oxygen extraction in the exercising human limb by increasing BF especially around inactive muscle fibers. Moreover, although marked functional sympatholysis also occurs during exercise, the arterial NE infusion that mimics the exaggerated sympathetic nerve activity commonly seen in patients with cardiovascular disease was still capable of directly limiting BF in the exercising leg muscles.

  1. Human disturbances, habitat characteristics and social environment generate sex-specific responses in vigilance of Mediterranean mouflon.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stéphanie Benoist

    Full Text Available In prey species, vigilance is an important part of the decision making process related to predation risk effects. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms shaping vigilance behavior provides relevant insights on factors influencing individual fitness. We investigated the role of extrinsic and intrinsic factors on vigilance behavior in Mediterranean mouflon (Ovis gmelini musimon×Ovis sp. in a study site spatially and temporally contrasted in human pressures. Both sexes were less vigilant in the wildlife reserve compared to surrounding unprotected areas, except for males during the hunting period. During this period, males tended to be less strictly restricted to the reserve than females what might lead to a pervasive effect of hunting within the protected area, resulting in an increase in male vigilance. It might also be a rutting effect that did not occur in unprotected areas because males vigilance was already maximal in response to human disturbances. In both sexes, yearlings were less vigilant than adults, probably because they traded off vigilance for learning and energy acquisition and/or because they relied on adult experience present in the group. Similarly, non-reproductive females benefited of the vigilance effort provided by reproductive females when belonging to the same group. However, in the absence of reproductive females, non-reproductive females were as vigilant as reproductive females. Increasing group size was only found to reduce vigilance in females (up to 17.5%, not in males. We also showed sex-specific responses to habitat characteristics. Females increased their vigilance when habitat visibility decreased (up to 13.8% whereas males increased their vigilance when feeding on low quality sites, i.e., when concomitant increase in chewing time can be devoted to vigilance with limited costs. Our global approach was able to disentangle the sex-specific sources of variation in mouflon vigilance and stressed the importance of

  2. Plasma levels of 27-hydroxycholesterol in humans and mice with monogenic disturbances of high density lipoprotein metabolism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Karuna, Ratna; Holleboom, Adriaan G; Motazacker, Mohammad M

    2011-01-01

    Secretion of 27-hydroxycholesterol (27OHC) from macrophages is considered as an alternative to HDL-mediated reverse transport of excess cholesterol. We investigated 27OHC-concentrations in plasma of humans and mice with monogenic disorders of HDL metabolism. As compared to family controls mutations...... activities of LCAT and CETP, respectively, than the formation and transfer of cholesterylesters. 27OHC plasma levels were also decreased in apoA-I-, ABCA1- or LCAT-knockout mice but increased in SR-BI-knockout mice. Transplantation of ABCA1- and/or ABCG1-deficient bone marrow into LDL receptor deficient mice...... decreased plasma levels of 27OHC. In conclusion, mutations or absence of HDL genes lead to distinct alterations in the quantity, esterification or lipoprotein distribution of 27OHC. These findings argue against the earlier suggestion that 27OHC-metabolism in plasma occurs independently of HDL....

  3. Decreased hepatotoxic bile acid composition and altered synthesis in progressive human nonalcoholic fatty liver disease

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lake, April D.; Novak, Petr; Shipkova, Petia; Aranibar, Nelly; Robertson, Donald; Reily, Michael D.; Lu, Zhenqiang; Lehman-McKeeman, Lois D.; Cherrington, Nathan J.

    2013-01-01

    Bile acids (BAs) have many physiological roles and exhibit both toxic and protective influences within the liver. Alterations in the BA profile may be the result of disease induced liver injury. Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a prevalent form of chronic liver disease characterized by the pathophysiological progression from simple steatosis to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). The hypothesis of this study is that the ‘classical’ (neutral) and ‘alternative’ (acidic) BA synthesis pathways are altered together with hepatic BA composition during progression of human NAFLD. This study employed the use of transcriptomic and metabolomic assays to study the hepatic toxicologic BA profile in progressive human NAFLD. Individual human liver samples diagnosed as normal, steatosis, and NASH were utilized in the assays. The transcriptomic analysis of 70 BA genes revealed an enrichment of downregulated BA metabolism and transcription factor/receptor genes in livers diagnosed as NASH. Increased mRNA expression of BAAT and CYP7B1 was observed in contrast to decreased CYP8B1 expression in NASH samples. The BA metabolomic profile of NASH livers exhibited an increase in taurine together with elevated levels of conjugated BA species, taurocholic acid (TCA) and taurodeoxycholic acid (TDCA). Conversely, cholic acid (CA) and glycodeoxycholic acid (GDCA) were decreased in NASH liver. These findings reveal a potential shift toward the alternative pathway of BA synthesis during NASH, mediated by increased mRNA and protein expression of CYP7B1. Overall, the transcriptomic changes of BA synthesis pathway enzymes together with altered hepatic BA composition signify an attempt by the liver to reduce hepatotoxicity during disease progression to NASH. - Highlights: ► Altered hepatic bile acid composition is observed in progressive NAFLD. ► Bile acid synthesis enzymes are transcriptionally altered in NASH livers. ► Increased levels of taurine and conjugated bile acids

  4. Decreased hepatotoxic bile acid composition and altered synthesis in progressive human nonalcoholic fatty liver disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lake, April D. [University of Arizona, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Tucson, AZ 85721 (United States); Novak, Petr [Biology Centre ASCR, Institute of Plant Molecular Biology, Ceske Budejovice 37001 (Czech Republic); Shipkova, Petia; Aranibar, Nelly; Robertson, Donald; Reily, Michael D. [Pharmaceutical Candidate Optimization, Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., Princeton, NJ 08543 (United States); Lu, Zhenqiang [The Arizona Statistical Consulting Laboratory, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721 (United States); Lehman-McKeeman, Lois D. [Pharmaceutical Candidate Optimization, Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., Princeton, NJ 08543 (United States); Cherrington, Nathan J., E-mail: cherrington@pharmacy.arizona.edu [University of Arizona, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Tucson, AZ 85721 (United States)

    2013-04-15

    Bile acids (BAs) have many physiological roles and exhibit both toxic and protective influences within the liver. Alterations in the BA profile may be the result of disease induced liver injury. Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a prevalent form of chronic liver disease characterized by the pathophysiological progression from simple steatosis to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). The hypothesis of this study is that the ‘classical’ (neutral) and ‘alternative’ (acidic) BA synthesis pathways are altered together with hepatic BA composition during progression of human NAFLD. This study employed the use of transcriptomic and metabolomic assays to study the hepatic toxicologic BA profile in progressive human NAFLD. Individual human liver samples diagnosed as normal, steatosis, and NASH were utilized in the assays. The transcriptomic analysis of 70 BA genes revealed an enrichment of downregulated BA metabolism and transcription factor/receptor genes in livers diagnosed as NASH. Increased mRNA expression of BAAT and CYP7B1 was observed in contrast to decreased CYP8B1 expression in NASH samples. The BA metabolomic profile of NASH livers exhibited an increase in taurine together with elevated levels of conjugated BA species, taurocholic acid (TCA) and taurodeoxycholic acid (TDCA). Conversely, cholic acid (CA) and glycodeoxycholic acid (GDCA) were decreased in NASH liver. These findings reveal a potential shift toward the alternative pathway of BA synthesis during NASH, mediated by increased mRNA and protein expression of CYP7B1. Overall, the transcriptomic changes of BA synthesis pathway enzymes together with altered hepatic BA composition signify an attempt by the liver to reduce hepatotoxicity during disease progression to NASH. - Highlights: ► Altered hepatic bile acid composition is observed in progressive NAFLD. ► Bile acid synthesis enzymes are transcriptionally altered in NASH livers. ► Increased levels of taurine and conjugated bile acids

  5. Altered serotonin physiology in human breast cancers favors paradoxical growth and cell survival.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pai, Vaibhav P; Marshall, Aaron M; Hernandez, Laura L; Buckley, Arthur R; Horseman, Nelson D

    2009-01-01

    The breast microenvironment can either retard or accelerate the events associated with progression of latent cancers. However, the actions of local physiological mediators in the context of breast cancers are poorly understood. Serotonin (5-HT) is a critical local regulator of epithelial homeostasis in the breast and other organs. Herein, we report complex alterations in the intrinsic mammary gland serotonin system of human breast cancers. Serotonin biosynthetic capacity was analyzed in human breast tumor tissue microarrays using immunohistochemistry for tryptophan hydroxylase 1 (TPH1). Serotonin receptors (5-HT1-7) were analyzed in human breast tumors using the Oncomine database. Serotonin receptor expression, signal transduction, and 5-HT effects on breast cancer cell phenotype were compared in non-transformed and transformed human breast cells. In the context of the normal mammary gland, 5-HT acts as a physiological regulator of lactation and involution, in part by favoring growth arrest and cell death. This tightly regulated 5-HT system is subverted in multiple ways in human breast cancers. Specifically, TPH1 expression undergoes a non-linear change during progression, with increased expression during malignant progression. Correspondingly, the tightly regulated pattern of 5-HT receptors becomes dysregulated in human breast cancer cells, resulting in both ectopic expression of some isoforms and suppression of others. The receptor expression change is accompanied by altered downstream signaling of 5-HT receptors in human breast cancer cells, resulting in resistance to 5-HT-induced apoptosis, and stimulated proliferation. Our data constitutes the first report of direct involvement of 5-HT in human breast cancer. Increased 5-HT biosynthetic capacity accompanied by multiple changes in 5-HT receptor expression and signaling favor malignant progression of human breast cancer cells (for example, stimulated proliferation, inappropriate cell survival). This occurs

  6. Smoking cessation alters intestinal microbiota: insights from quantitative investigations on human fecal samples using FISH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biedermann, Luc; Brülisauer, Karin; Zeitz, Jonas; Frei, Pascal; Scharl, Michael; Vavricka, Stephan R; Fried, Michael; Loessner, Martin J; Rogler, Gerhard; Schuppler, Markus

    2014-09-01

    There has been a dramatic increase in investigations on the potential mechanistic role of the intestinal microbiota in various diseases and factors modulating intestinal microbial composition. We recently reported on intestinal microbial shifts after smoking cessation in humans. In this study, we aimed to conduct further microbial analyses and verify our previous results obtained by pyrosequencing using a direct quantitative microbial approach. Stool samples of healthy smoking human subjects undergoing controlled smoking cessation during a 9-week observational period were analyzed and compared with 2 control groups, ongoing smoking and nonsmoking subjects. Fluorescence in situ hybridization was applied to quantify specific bacterial groups. Intestinal microbiota composition was substantially altered after smoking cessation as characterized by an increase in key representatives from the phyla of Firmicutes (Clostridium coccoides, Eubacterium rectale, and Clostridium leptum subgroup) and Actinobacteria (HGC bacteria and Bifidobacteria) as well as a decrease in Bacteroidetes (Prevotella spp. and Bacteroides spp.) and Proteobacteria (β- and γ-subgroup of Proteobacteria). As determined by fluorescence in situ hybridization, an independent direct quantitative microbial approach, we could confirm that intestinal microbiota composition in humans is influenced by smoking. The characteristics of observed microbial shifts suggest a potential mechanistic association to alterations in body weight subsequent to smoking cessation. More importantly, regarding previously described microbial hallmarks of dysbiosis in inflammatory bowel diseases, a variety of observed microbial alterations after smoking cessation deserve further consideration in view of the divergent effect of smoking on the clinical course of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.

  7. Cytoskeletal stability and metabolic alterations in primary human macrophages in long-term microgravity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Svantje Tauber

    Full Text Available The immune system is one of the most affected systems of the human body during space flight. The cells of the immune system are exceptionally sensitive to microgravity. Thus, serious concerns arise, whether space flight associated weakening of the immune system ultimately precludes the expansion of human presence beyond the Earth's orbit. For human space flight, it is an urgent need to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which altered gravity influences and changes the functions of immune cells. The CELLBOX-PRIME (= CellBox-Primary Human Macrophages in Microgravity Environment experiment investigated for the first time microgravity-associated long-term alterations in primary human macrophages, one of the most important effector cells of the immune system. The experiment was conducted in the U.S. National Laboratory on board of the International Space Station ISS using the NanoRacks laboratory and Biorack type I standard CELLBOX EUE type IV containers. Upload and download were performed with the SpaceX CRS-3 and the Dragon spaceship on April 18th, 2014 / May 18th, 2014. Surprisingly, primary human macrophages exhibited neither quantitative nor structural changes of the actin and vimentin cytoskeleton after 11 days in microgravity when compared to 1g controls. Neither CD18 or CD14 surface expression were altered in microgravity, however ICAM-1 expression was reduced. The analysis of 74 metabolites in the cell culture supernatant by GC-TOF-MS, revealed eight metabolites with significantly different quantities when compared to 1g controls. In particular, the significant increase of free fucose in the cell culture supernatant was associated with a significant decrease of cell surface-bound fucose. The reduced ICAM-1 expression and the loss of cell surface-bound fucose may contribute to functional impairments, e.g. the activation of T cells, migration and activation of the innate immune response. We assume that the surprisingly small

  8. Influence of connectivity, wild prey and disturbance on occupancy of tigers in the human-dominated western Terai Arc Landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abishek Harihar

    Full Text Available Occupying only 7% of their historical range and confined to forested habitats interspersed in a matrix of human dominated landscapes, tigers (Panthera tigris typify the problems faced by most large carnivores worldwide. With heads of governments of tiger range countries pledging to reverse the extinction process and setting a goal of doubling wild tiger numbers by 2022, achieving this target would require identifying existing breeding cores, potential breeding habitats and opportunities for dispersal. The Terai Arc Landscape (TAL represents one region which has recently witnessed recovery of tiger populations following conservation efforts. In this study, we develop a spatially explicit tiger occupancy model with survey data from 2009-10 based on a priori knowledge of tiger biology and specific issues plaguing the western TAL (6,979 km(2, which occurs in two disjunct units (Tiger Habitat Blocks; THBs. Although the overall occupancy of tigers was 0.588 (SE 0.071, our results clearly indicate that loss in functionality of a regional corridor has resulted in tigers now occupying 17.58% of the available habitat in THB I in comparison to 88.5% in THB II. The current patterns of occupancy were best explained by models incorporating the interactive effect of habitat blocks (AIC w = 0.883 on wild prey availability (AIC w = 0.742 and anthropogenic disturbances (AIC w = 0.143. Our analysis has helped identify areas of high tiger occupancy both within and outside existing protected areas, which highlights the need for a unified control of the landscape under a single conservation unit with the primary focus of managing tigers and associated wildlife. Finally, in the light of global conservation targets and recent legislations in India, our study assumes significance as we identify opportunities to secure (e.g. THB II and increase (e.g. THB I tiger populations in the landscape.

  9. Ultraconserved regions encoding ncRNAs are altered in human leukemias and carcinomas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calin, George A; Liu, Chang-gong; Ferracin, Manuela; Hyslop, Terry; Spizzo, Riccardo; Sevignani, Cinzia; Fabbri, Muller; Cimmino, Amelia; Lee, Eun Joo; Wojcik, Sylwia E; Shimizu, Masayoshi; Tili, Esmerina; Rossi, Simona; Taccioli, Cristian; Pichiorri, Flavia; Liu, Xiuping; Zupo, Simona; Herlea, Vlad; Gramantieri, Laura; Lanza, Giovanni; Alder, Hansjuerg; Rassenti, Laura; Volinia, Stefano; Schmittgen, Thomas D; Kipps, Thomas J; Negrini, Massimo; Croce, Carlo M

    2007-09-01

    Noncoding RNA (ncRNA) transcripts are thought to be involved in human tumorigenesis. We report that a large fraction of genomic ultraconserved regions (UCRs) encode a particular set of ncRNAs whose expression is altered in human cancers. Genome-wide profiling revealed that UCRs have distinct signatures in human leukemias and carcinomas. UCRs are frequently located at fragile sites and genomic regions involved in cancers. We identified certain UCRs whose expression may be regulated by microRNAs abnormally expressed in human chronic lymphocytic leukemia, and we proved that the inhibition of an overexpressed UCR induces apoptosis in colon cancer cells. Our findings argue that ncRNAs and interaction between noncoding genes are involved in tumorigenesis to a greater extent than previously thought.

  10. Secretion of interferon gamma from human immune cells is altered by exposure to tributyltin and dibutyltin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, Shanieek; Reid, Jacqueline; Whalen, Margaret

    2015-05-01

    Tributyltin (TBT) and dibutyltin (DBT) are widespread environmental contaminants found in food, beverages, and human blood samples. Both of these butyltins (BTs) interfere with the ability of human natural killer (NK) cells to lyse target cells and alter secretion of the pro-inflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα) from human immune cells in vitro. The capacity of BTs to interfere with secretion of other pro-inflammatory cytokines has not been examined. Interferon gamma (IFNγ) is a modulator of adaptive and innate immune responses, playing an important role in overall immune competence. This study shows that both TBT and DBT alter secretion of IFNγ from human immune cells. Peripheral blood cell preparations that were increasingly reconstituted were used to determine if exposures to either TBT or DBT affected IFNγ secretion and how the makeup of the cell preparation influenced that effect. IFNγ secretion was examined after 24 h, 48 h, and 6 day exposures to TBT (200 - 2.5 nM) and DBT (5 - 0.05 µM) in highly enriched human NK cells, a monocyte-depleted preparation of PBMCs, and monocyte-containing PBMCs. Both BTs altered IFNγ secretion from immune cells at most of the conditions tested (either increasing or decreasing secretion). However, there was significant variability among donors as to the concentrations and time points that showed changes as well as the baseline secretion of IFNγ. The majority of donors showed an increase in IFNγ secretion in response to at least one concentration of TBT or DBT at a minimum of one length of exposure. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Human EEG responses to controlled alterations of the Earth's magnetic field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sastre, Antonio; Graham, Charles; Cook, Mary R; Gerkovich, Mary M; Gailey, Paul

    2002-09-01

    Examine the effects of controlled changes in the Earth's magnetic field on electroencephalogram (EEG) and subjective report. Fifty volunteers were exposed double-blind to changes in field magnitude, angle of inclination, and angle of deviation. Volunteers were also exposed to magnetic field conditions found near the North and South Pole. EEG recorded over temporal and occipital sites was compared across 4s baseline, field exposure, and no-change control trials. No EEG spectral differences as a function of gender or recording site were found. Geomagnetic field alterations had no effect on total energy (0.5-42 Hz), energy within traditional EEG analysis bands, or on the 95% spectral edge. Most volunteers reported no sensations; others reported non-specific symptoms unrelated to type of field change. Three hypothesized field detection mechanisms were not supported: (1) mechanical reception through torque exerted on the ferromagnetic material magnetite; (2) movement-induced induction of an electric field in the body; and (3) enhanced sensitivity due to alterations in the rates of chemical reactions involving electron spin states. Humans have little ability to detect brief alterations in the geomagnetic field, even if these alteration are of a large magnitude.

  12. Transforming growth factor-β2 induces morphological alteration of human corneal endothelial cells in vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jing Wang

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available AIM:To investigate the morphological altering effect of transforming growth factor-β2 (TGF-β2 on untransfected human corneal endothelial cells (HCECs in vitro.METHODS: After untransfected HCECs were treated with TGF-β2 at different concentrations, the morphology, cytoskeleton distribution, and type IV collagen expression of the cells were examined with inverted contrast light microscopy, fluorescence microscopy, immunofluorescence or Western Blot.RESULTS:TGF-β2 at the concentration of 3-15 μg/L had obviously alterative effects on HCECs morphology in dose and time-dependent manner, and 9 μg/L was the peak concentration. TGF-β2 (9 μg/L altered HCE cell morphology after treatment for 36h, increased the mean optical density (P<0.01 and the length of F-actin, reduced the mean optical density (P<0.01 of the collagen type IV in extracellular matrix (ECM and induced the rearrangement of F-actin, microtubule in cytoplasm and collagen type IV in ECM after treatment for 72h. CONCLUTION:TGF-β2 has obviously alterative effect on the morphology of HCECs from polygonal phenotype to enlarged spindle-shaped phenotype, in dose and time-dependence manner by inducing more, elongation and alignment of F-actin, rearrangement of microtubule and larger spread area of collagen type IV.

  13. Domain altering SNPs in the human proteome and their impact on signaling pathways.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yichuan Liu

    Full Text Available Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs constitute an important mode of genetic variations observed in the human genome. A small fraction of SNPs, about four thousand out of the ten million, has been associated with genetic disorders and complex diseases. The present study focuses on SNPs that fall on protein domains, 3D structures that facilitate connectivity of proteins in cell signaling and metabolic pathways. We scanned the human proteome using the PROSITE web tool and identified proteins with SNP containing domains. We showed that SNPs that fall on protein domains are highly statistically enriched among SNPs linked to hereditary disorders and complex diseases. Proteins whose domains are dramatically altered by the presence of an SNP are even more likely to be present among proteins linked to hereditary disorders. Proteins with domain-altering SNPs comprise highly connected nodes in cellular pathways such as the focal adhesion, the axon guidance pathway and the autoimmune disease pathways. Statistical enrichment of domain/motif signatures in interacting protein pairs indicates extensive loss of connectivity of cell signaling pathways due to domain-altering SNPs, potentially leading to hereditary disorders.

  14. Modeling large-scale human alteration of land surface hydrology and climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pokhrel, Yadu N.; Felfelani, Farshid; Shin, Sanghoon; Yamada, Tomohito J.; Satoh, Yusuke

    2017-12-01

    Rapidly expanding human activities have profoundly affected various biophysical and biogeochemical processes of the Earth system over a broad range of scales, and freshwater systems are now amongst the most extensively altered ecosystems. In this study, we examine the human-induced changes in land surface water and energy balances and the associated climate impacts using a coupled hydrological-climate model framework which also simulates the impacts of human activities on the water cycle. We present three sets of analyses using the results from two model versions—one with and the other without considering human activities; both versions are run in offline and coupled mode resulting in a series of four experiments in total. First, we examine climate and human-induced changes in regional water balance focusing on the widely debated issue of the desiccation of the Aral Sea in central Asia. Then, we discuss the changes in surface temperature as a result of changes in land surface energy balance due to irrigation over global and regional scales. Finally, we examine the global and regional climate impacts of increased atmospheric water vapor content due to irrigation. Results indicate that the direct anthropogenic alteration of river flow in the Aral Sea basin resulted in the loss of 510 km3 of water during the latter half of the twentieth century which explains about half of the total loss of water from the sea. Results of irrigation-induced changes in surface energy balance suggest a significant surface cooling of up to 3.3 K over 1° grids in highly irrigated areas but a negligible change in land surface temperature when averaged over sufficiently large global regions. Results from the coupled model indicate a substantial change in 2 m air temperature and outgoing longwave radiation due to irrigation, highlighting the non-local (regional and global) implications of irrigation. These results provide important insights on the direct human alteration of land surface

  15. Legumain Regulates Differentiation Fate of Human Bone Marrow Stromal Cells and Is Altered in Postmenopausal Osteoporosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abbas Jafari

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Secreted factors are a key component of stem cell niche and their dysregulation compromises stem cell function. Legumain is a secreted cysteine protease involved in diverse biological processes. Here, we demonstrate that legumain regulates lineage commitment of human bone marrow stromal cells and that its expression level and cellular localization are altered in postmenopausal osteoporotic patients. As shown by genetic and pharmacological manipulation, legumain inhibited osteoblast (OB differentiation and in vivo bone formation through degradation of the bone matrix protein fibronectin. In addition, genetic ablation or pharmacological inhibition of legumain activity led to precocious OB differentiation and increased vertebral mineralization in zebrafish. Finally, we show that localized increased expression of legumain in bone marrow adipocytes was inversely correlated with adjacent trabecular bone mass in a cohort of patients with postmenopausal osteoporosis. Our data suggest that altered proteolytic activity of legumain in the bone microenvironment contributes to decreased bone mass in postmenopausal osteoporosis.

  16. Identification of the Consistently Altered Metabolic Targets in Human Hepatocellular Carcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nwosu, Zeribe Chike; Megger, Dominik Andre; Hammad, Seddik; Sitek, Barbara; Roessler, Stephanie; Ebert, Matthias Philip; Meyer, Christoph; Dooley, Steven

    2017-09-01

    Cancer cells rely on metabolic alterations to enhance proliferation and survival. Metabolic gene alterations that repeatedly occur in liver cancer are largely unknown. We aimed to identify metabolic genes that are consistently deregulated, and are of potential clinical significance in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We studied the expression of 2,761 metabolic genes in 8 microarray datasets comprising 521 human HCC tissues. Genes exclusively up-regulated or down-regulated in 6 or more datasets were defined as consistently deregulated. The consistent genes that correlated with tumor progression markers ( ECM2 and MMP9) (Pearson correlation P < .05) were used for Kaplan-Meier overall survival analysis in a patient cohort. We further compared proteomic expression of metabolic genes in 19 tumors vs adjacent normal liver tissues. We identified 634 consistent metabolic genes, ∼60% of which are not yet described in HCC. The down-regulated genes (n = 350) are mostly involved in physiologic hepatocyte metabolic functions (eg, xenobiotic, fatty acid, and amino acid metabolism). In contrast, among consistently up-regulated metabolic genes (n = 284) are those involved in glycolysis, pentose phosphate pathway, nucleotide biosynthesis, tricarboxylic acid cycle, oxidative phosphorylation, proton transport, membrane lipid, and glycan metabolism. Several metabolic genes (n = 434) correlated with progression markers, and of these, 201 predicted overall survival outcome in the patient cohort analyzed. Over 90% of the metabolic targets significantly altered at the protein level were similarly up- or down-regulated as in genomic profile. We provide the first exposition of the consistently altered metabolic genes in HCC and show that these genes are potentially relevant targets for onward studies in preclinical and clinical contexts.

  17. Identification of the Consistently Altered Metabolic Targets in Human Hepatocellular CarcinomaSummary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeribe Chike Nwosu

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Background & Aims: Cancer cells rely on metabolic alterations to enhance proliferation and survival. Metabolic gene alterations that repeatedly occur in liver cancer are largely unknown. We aimed to identify metabolic genes that are consistently deregulated, and are of potential clinical significance in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC. Methods: We studied the expression of 2,761 metabolic genes in 8 microarray datasets comprising 521 human HCC tissues. Genes exclusively up-regulated or down-regulated in 6 or more datasets were defined as consistently deregulated. The consistent genes that correlated with tumor progression markers (ECM2 and MMP9 (Pearson correlation P < .05 were used for Kaplan-Meier overall survival analysis in a patient cohort. We further compared proteomic expression of metabolic genes in 19 tumors vs adjacent normal liver tissues. Results: We identified 634 consistent metabolic genes, ∼60% of which are not yet described in HCC. The down-regulated genes (n = 350 are mostly involved in physiologic hepatocyte metabolic functions (eg, xenobiotic, fatty acid, and amino acid metabolism. In contrast, among consistently up-regulated metabolic genes (n = 284 are those involved in glycolysis, pentose phosphate pathway, nucleotide biosynthesis, tricarboxylic acid cycle, oxidative phosphorylation, proton transport, membrane lipid, and glycan metabolism. Several metabolic genes (n = 434 correlated with progression markers, and of these, 201 predicted overall survival outcome in the patient cohort analyzed. Over 90% of the metabolic targets significantly altered at the protein level were similarly up- or down-regulated as in genomic profile. Conclusions: We provide the first exposition of the consistently altered metabolic genes in HCC and show that these genes are potentially relevant targets for onward studies in preclinical and clinical contexts. Keywords: Liver Cancer, HCC, Tumor Metabolism

  18. [Identification of ecological corridors for Tibetan antelope and assessment of their human disturbances in the alpine desert of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuge, Hai-jin; Lin, Dan-qi; Li, Xiao-wen

    2015-08-01

    The alpine desert of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP) provides the largest habitats for those endangered ungulates (e.g., Tibetan antelope, Tibetan Kiang and wild yak) on the earth. However, human disturbance especially infrastructure constructions (e.g., railway & highway) has increasingly fragmented the habitats of those endangered ungulates by disturbing and interrupting their ecological corridors for their seasonal migration. Aiming at identifying the potential ecological corridors for Tibetan antelope, a GIS-based model-Linkage Mapper was used to model and detect the potential ecological corridors of Tibetan antelope based on the principle of least cost path. Three categories of ecological corridors, i. e., closed (inside reserves), linking (linking the reserves) and open (starting from reserve but ending outside) corridors were distinguished by their spatial interactions with existing major national nature reserves (i.e., Altun, Kekexili and Qiangtang NNRs) in the alpine desert of QTP, and their spatial patterns, conservation status associated with human disturbance were also examined. Although our research indicated a general ecological integration of both habitats and ecological corridors in the alpine desert ecosystem, increasing human disturbance should not be ignored, which particularly partially undermined the functioning of those ecological corridors linking the nature reserves. Considering disadvantages of prevailing separate administrative structure of nature reserve on the effective conservation of ecological corridors for those endangered ungulates, a coordinative conservation network among these major national nature reserves should be established to ensure the unified trans-boundary conservation efforts and to enhance its overall conservation efficacy by sharing information, knowledge and optimizing conservation resources.

  19. Muscle biopsies from human muscle diseases with myopathic pathology reveal common alterations in mitochondrial function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sunitha, Balaraju; Gayathri, Narayanappa; Kumar, Manish; Keshava Prasad, Thottethodi Subrahmanya; Nalini, Atchayaram; Padmanabhan, Balasundaram; Srinivas Bharath, Muchukunte Mukunda

    2016-07-01

    Muscle diseases are clinically and genetically heterogeneous and manifest as dystrophic, inflammatory and myopathic pathologies, among others. Our previous study on the cardiotoxin mouse model of myodegeneration and inflammation linked muscle pathology with mitochondrial damage and oxidative stress. In this study, we investigated whether human muscle diseases display mitochondrial changes. Muscle biopsies from muscle disease patients, represented by dysferlinopathy (dysfy) (dystrophic pathology; n = 43), polymyositis (PM) (inflammatory pathology; n = 24), and distal myopathy with rimmed vacuoles (DMRV) (distal myopathy; n = 31) were analyzed. Mitochondrial damage (ragged blue and COX-deficient fibers) was revealed in dysfy, PM, and DMRV cases by enzyme histochemistry (SDH and COX-SDH), electron microscopy (vacuolation and altered cristae) and biochemical assays (significantly increased ADP/ATP ratio). Proteomic analysis of muscle mitochondria from all three muscle diseases by isobaric tag for relative and absolute quantitation labeling and liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) analysis demonstrated down-regulation of electron transport chain (ETC) complex subunits, assembly factors and Krebs cycle enzymes. Interestingly, 80 of the under-expressed proteins were common among the three pathologies. Assay of ETC and Krebs cycle enzyme activities validated the MS data. Mitochondrial proteins from muscle pathologies also displayed higher tryptophan (Trp) oxidation and the same was corroborated in the cardiotoxin model. Molecular modeling predicted Trp oxidation to alter the local structure of mitochondrial proteins. Our data highlight mitochondrial alterations in muscle pathologies, represented by morphological changes, altered mitochondrial proteome and protein oxidation, thereby establishing the role of mitochondrial damage in human muscle diseases. We investigated whether human muscle diseases display mitochondrial changes. Muscle biopsies

  20. Here, there be dragons: charting autophagy-related alterations in human tumors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebovitz, Chandra B; Bortnik, Svetlana B; Gorski, Sharon M

    2012-03-01

    Macroautophagy (or autophagy) is a catabolic cellular process that is both homeostatic and stress adaptive. Normal cells rely on basal levels of autophagy to maintain cellular integrity (via turnover of long-lived proteins and damaged organelles) and increased levels of autophagy to buoy cell survival during various metabolic stresses (via nutrient and energy provision through lysosomal degradation of cytoplasmic components). Autophagy can function in both tumor suppression and tumor progression, and is under investigation in clinical trials as a novel target for anticancer therapy. However, its role in cancer pathogenesis has yet to be fully explored. In particular, it remains unknown whether in vitro observations will be applicable to human cancer patients. Another outstanding question is whether there exists tumor-specific selection for alterations in autophagy function. In this review, we survey reported mutations in autophagy genes and key autophagy regulators identified in human tumor samples and summarize the literature regarding expression levels of autophagy genes and proteins in various cancer tissues. Although it is too early to draw inferences from this collection of in vivo studies of autophagy-related alterations in human cancers, their results highlight the challenges that must be overcome before we can accurately assess the scope of autophagy's predicted role in tumorigenesis.

  1. Variations in Glycogen Synthesis in Human Pluripotent Stem Cells with Altered Pluripotent States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Richard J.; Zhang, Guofeng; Garfield, Susan H.; Shi, Yi-Jun; Chen, Kevin G.; Robey, Pamela G.; Leapman, Richard D.

    2015-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) represent very promising resources for cell-based regenerative medicine. It is essential to determine the biological implications of some fundamental physiological processes (such as glycogen metabolism) in these stem cells. In this report, we employ electron, immunofluorescence microscopy, and biochemical methods to study glycogen synthesis in hPSCs. Our results indicate that there is a high level of glycogen synthesis (0.28 to 0.62 μg/μg proteins) in undifferentiated human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) compared with the glycogen levels (0 to 0.25 μg/μg proteins) reported in human cancer cell lines. Moreover, we found that glycogen synthesis was regulated by bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP-4) and the glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK-3) pathway. Our observation of glycogen bodies and sustained expression of the pluripotent factor Oct-4 mediated by the potent GSK-3 inhibitor CHIR-99021 reveals an altered pluripotent state in hPSC culture. We further confirmed glycogen variations under different naïve pluripotent cell growth conditions based on the addition of the GSK-3 inhibitor BIO. Our data suggest that primed hPSCs treated with naïve growth conditions acquire altered pluripotent states, similar to those naïve-like hPSCs, with increased glycogen synthesis. Furthermore, we found that suppression of phosphorylated glycogen synthase was an underlying mechanism responsible for altered glycogen synthesis. Thus, our novel findings regarding the dynamic changes in glycogen metabolism provide new markers to assess the energetic and various pluripotent states in hPSCs. The components of glycogen metabolic pathways offer new assays to delineate previously unrecognized properties of hPSCs under different growth conditions. PMID:26565809

  2. Ecosystem services altered by human changes in the nitrogen cycle: a new perspective for US decision making Ecology Letters

    Science.gov (United States)

    The human alteration of the nitrogen (N) cycle has yielded many benefits, but also has altered ecosystems and degraded air and water quality in many areas. Here we explore the science available to connect the effects of increasing N on ecosystem structure and function to ecosyst...

  3. Novel mouse model recapitulates genome and transcriptome alterations in human colorectal carcinomas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNeil, Nicole E; Padilla-Nash, Hesed M; Buishand, Floryne O; Hue, Yue; Ried, Thomas

    2017-03-01

    Human colorectal carcinomas are defined by a nonrandom distribution of genomic imbalances that are characteristic for this disease. Often, these imbalances affect entire chromosomes. Understanding the role of these aneuploidies for carcinogenesis is of utmost importance. Currently, established transgenic mice do not recapitulate the pathognonomic genome aberration profile of human colorectal carcinomas. We have developed a novel model based on the spontaneous transformation of murine colon epithelial cells. During this process, cells progress through stages of pre-immortalization, immortalization and, finally, transformation, and result in tumors when injected into immunocompromised mice. We analyzed our model for genome and transcriptome alterations using ArrayCGH, spectral karyotyping (SKY), and array based gene expression profiling. ArrayCGH revealed a recurrent pattern of genomic imbalances. These results were confirmed by SKY. Comparing these imbalances with orthologous maps of human chromosomes revealed a remarkable overlap. We observed focal deletions of the tumor suppressor genes Trp53 and Cdkn2a/p16. High-level focal genomic amplification included the locus harboring the oncogene Mdm2, which was confirmed by FISH in the form of double minute chromosomes. Array-based global gene expression revealed distinct differences between the sequential steps of spontaneous transformation. Gene expression changes showed significant similarities with human colorectal carcinomas. Pathways most prominently affected included genes involved in chromosomal instability and in epithelial to mesenchymal transition. Our novel mouse model therefore recapitulates the most prominent genome and transcriptome alterations in human colorectal cancer, and might serve as a valuable tool for understanding the dynamic process of tumorigenesis, and for preclinical drug testing. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Alteration of human serum albumin binding properties induced by modifications: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maciążek-Jurczyk, Małgorzata; Szkudlarek, Agnieszka; Chudzik, Mariola; Pożycka, Jadwiga; Sułkowska, Anna

    2018-01-01

    Albumin, a major transporting protein in the blood, is the main target of modification that affects the binding of drugs to Sudlow's site I and II. These modification of serum protein moderates its physiological function, and works as a biomarker of some diseases. The main goal of the paper was to explain the possible alteration of human serum albumin binding properties induced by modifications such as glycation, oxidation and ageing, their origin, methods of evaluation and positive and negative meaning described by significant researchers.

  5. Severely altered guanidino compound levels, disturbed body weight homeostasis and impaired fertility in a mouse model of guanidinoacetate N-methyltransferase (GAMT) deficiency.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schmidt, A.; Marescau, B.; Boehm, E.A.; Renema, W.K.J.; Peco, R.; Das, A.; Steinfeld, R.; Chan, S.; Wallis, J.; Davidoff, M.; Ullrich, K.; Waldschutz, R.; Heerschap, A.; Deyn, P.P. de; Neubauer, S.; Isbrandt, D.

    2004-01-01

    We generated a knockout mouse model for guanidinoacetate N-methyltransferase (GAMT) deficiency (MIM 601240), the first discovered human creatine deficiency syndrome, by gene targeting in embryonic stem cells. Disruption of the open reading frame of the murine GAMT gene in the first exon resulted in

  6. Disturbance hydrology: Preparing for an increasingly disturbed future

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirus, Benjamin B.; Ebel, Brian A.; Mohr, Christian H.; Zegre, Nicolas

    2017-01-01

    This special issue is the result of several fruitful conference sessions on disturbance hydrology, which started at the 2013 AGU Fall Meeting in San Francisco and have continued every year since. The stimulating presentations and discussions surrounding those sessions have focused on understanding both the disruption of hydrologic functioning following discrete disturbances, as well as the subsequent recovery or change within the affected watershed system. Whereas some hydrologic disturbances are directly linked to anthropogenic activities, such as resource extraction, the contributions to this special issue focus primarily on those with indirect or less pronounced human involvement, such as bark-beetle infestation, wildfire, and other natural hazards. However, human activities are enhancing the severity and frequency of these seemingly natural disturbances, thereby contributing to acute hydrologic problems and hazards. Major research challenges for our increasingly disturbed planet include the lack of continuous pre- and post-disturbance monitoring, hydrologic impacts that vary spatially and temporally based on environmental and hydroclimatic conditions, and the preponderance of overlapping or compounding disturbance sequences. In addition, a conceptual framework for characterizing commonalities and differences among hydrologic disturbances is still in its infancy. In this introduction to the special issue, we advance the fusion of concepts and terminology from ecology and hydrology to begin filling this gap. We briefly explore some preliminary approaches for comparing different disturbances and their hydrologic impacts, which provides a starting point for further dialogue and research progress.

  7. CHRONIC DIETARY EXPOSURE WITH INTERMITTENT SPIKE DOSES OF CHLORPYRIFOS FAILS TO ALTER FLASH OR PATTERN REVERSAL EVOKED POTENTIALS IN RATS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Human exposure to pesticides is often characterized by chronic low level exposure with intermittent spiked higher exposures. Visual disturbances are often reported following exposure to xenobiotics, and cholinesterase-inhibiting compounds have been reported to alter visual functi...

  8. Altered hematopoiesis in trisomy 21 as revealed through in vitro differentiation of isogenic human pluripotent cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacLean, Glenn A.; Menne, Tobias F.; Guo, Guoji; Sanchez, Danielle J.; Park, In-Hyun; Daley, George Q.; Orkin, Stuart H.

    2012-01-01

    Trisomy 21 is associated with hematopoietic abnormalities in the fetal liver, a preleukemic condition termed transient myeloproliferative disorder, and increased incidence of acute megakaryoblastic leukemia. Human trisomy 21 pluripotent cells of various origins, human embryionic stem (hES), and induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, were differentiated in vitro as a model to recapitulate the effects of trisomy on hematopoiesis. To mitigate clonal variation, we isolated disomic and trisomic subclones from the same parental iPS line, thereby generating subclones isogenic except for chromosome 21. Under differentiation conditions favoring development of fetal liver-like, γ-globin expressing, definitive hematopoiesis, we found that trisomic cells of hES, iPS, or isogenic origins exhibited a two- to fivefold increase in a population of CD43+(Leukosialin)/CD235+(Glycophorin A) hematopoietic cells, accompanied by increased multilineage colony-forming potential in colony-forming assays. These findings establish an intrinsic disturbance of multilineage myeloid hematopoiesis in trisomy 21 at the fetal liver stage. PMID:23045682

  9. Climate change and physical disturbance cause similar community shifts in biological soil crusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrenberg, Scott; Reed, Sasha C.; Belnap, Jayne

    2015-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts)—communities of mosses, lichens, cyanobacteria, and heterotrophs living at the soil surface—are fundamental components of drylands worldwide, and destruction of biocrusts dramatically alters biogeochemical processes, hydrology, surface energy balance, and vegetation cover. While there has been long-standing concern over impacts of 5 physical disturbances on biocrusts (e.g., trampling by livestock, damage from vehicles), there is also increasing concern over the potential for climate change to alter biocrust community structure. Using long-term data from the Colorado Plateau, USA, we examined the effects of 10 years of experimental warming and altered precipitation (in full-factorial design) on biocrust communities, and compared the effects of altered climate with those of long-term physical 10 disturbance (>10 years of replicated human trampling). Surprisingly, altered climate and physical disturbance treatments had similar effects on biocrust community structure. Warming, altered precipitation frequency [an increase of small (1.2 mm) summer rainfall events], and physical disturbance from trampling all promoted early successional community states marked by dramatic declines in moss cover and increased cyanobacteria cover, with more variable effects 15 on lichens. While the pace of community change varied significantly among treatments, our results suggest that multiple aspects of climate change will affect biocrusts to the same degree as physical disturbance. This is particularly disconcerting in the context of warming, as temperatures for drylands are projected to increase beyond those imposed by the climate treatments used in our study.

  10. Accounting for regional variation in both natural environment and human disturbance to improve performance of multimetric indices of lotic benthic diatoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Tao; Stevenson, R Jan; Infante, Dana M

    2016-10-15

    Regional variation in both natural environment and human disturbance can influence performance of ecological assessments. In this study we calculated 5 types of benthic diatom multimetric indices (MMIs) with 3 different approaches to account for variation in ecological assessments. We used: site groups defined by ecoregions or diatom typologies; the same or different sets of metrics among site groups; and unmodeled or modeled MMIs, where models accounted for natural variation in metrics within site groups by calculating an expected reference condition for each metric and each site. We used data from the USEPA's National Rivers and Streams Assessment to calculate the MMIs and evaluate changes in MMI performance. MMI performance was evaluated with indices of precision, bias, responsiveness, sensitivity and relevancy which were respectively measured as MMI variation among reference sites, effects of natural variables on MMIs, difference between MMIs at reference and highly disturbed sites, percent of highly disturbed sites properly classified, and relation of MMIs to human disturbance and stressors. All 5 types of MMIs showed considerable discrimination ability. Using different metrics among ecoregions sometimes reduced precision, but it consistently increased responsiveness, sensitivity, and relevancy. Site specific metric modeling reduced bias and increased responsiveness. Combined use of different metrics among site groups and site specific modeling significantly improved MMI performance irrespective of site grouping approach. Compared to ecoregion site classification, grouping sites based on diatom typologies improved precision, but did not improve overall performance of MMIs if we accounted for natural variation in metrics with site specific models. We conclude that using different metrics among ecoregions and site specific metric modeling improve MMI performance, particularly when used together. Applications of these MMI approaches in ecological assessments

  11. Design of Human-Machine Interface and altering of pelvic obliquity with RGR Trainer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pietrusinski, Maciej; Unluhisarcikli, Ozer; Mavroidis, Constantinos; Cajigas, Iahn; Bonato, Paolo

    2011-01-01

    The Robotic Gait Rehabilitation (RGR) Trainer targets secondary gait deviations in stroke survivors undergoing rehabilitation. Using an impedance control strategy and a linear electromagnetic actuator, the device generates a force field to control pelvic obliquity through a Human-Machine Interface (i.e. a lower body exoskeleton). Herein we describe the design of the RGR Trainer Human-Machine Interface (HMI) and we demonstrate the system's ability to alter the pattern of movement of the pelvis during gait in a healthy subject. Results are shown for experiments during which we induced hip-hiking - in healthy subjects. Our findings indicate that the RGR Trainer has the ability of affecting pelvic obliquity during gait. Furthermore, we provide preliminary evidence of short-term retention of the modified pelvic obliquity pattern induced by the RGR Trainer. © 2011 IEEE

  12. Design of Human – Machine Interface and Altering of Pelvic Obliquity with RGR Trainer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pietrusinski, Maciej; Unluhisarcikli, Ozer; Mavroidis, Constantinos; Cajigas, Iahn; Bonato, Paolo

    2012-01-01

    The Robotic Gait Rehabilitation (RGR) Trainer targets secondary gait deviations in stroke survivors undergoing rehabilitation. Using an impedance control strategy and a linear electromagnetic actuator, the device generates a force field to control pelvic obliquity through a Human-Machine Interface (i.e. a lower body exoskeleton). Herein we describe the design of the RGR Trainer Human-Machine Interface (HMI) and we demonstrate the system’s ability to alter the pattern of movement of the pelvis during gait in a healthy subject. Results are shown for experiments during which we induced hip-hiking – in healthy subjects. Our findings indicate that the RGR Trainer has the ability of affecting pelvic obliquity during gait. Furthermore, we provide preliminary evidence of short-term retention of the modified pelvic obliquity pattern induced by the RGR Trainer. PMID:22275693

  13. Ibuprofen alters human testicular physiology to produce a state of compensated hypogonadism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, David Møbjerg; Desdoits-Lethimonier, Christèle; Mackey, Abigail L

    2018-01-01

    Concern has been raised over increased male reproductive disorders in the Western world, and the disruption of male endocrinology has been suggested to play a central role. Several studies have shown that mild analgesics exposure during fetal life is associated with antiandrogenic effects...... with reproductive and physical disorders. In the men, luteinizing hormone (LH) and ibuprofen plasma levels were positively correlated, and the testosterone/LH ratio decreased. Using adult testis explants exposed or not exposed to ibuprofen, we demonstrate that the endocrine capabilities from testicular Leydig...... and Sertoli cells, including testosterone production, were suppressed through transcriptional repression. This effect was also observed in a human steroidogenic cell line. Our data demonstrate that ibuprofen alters the endocrine system via selective transcriptional repression in the human testes, thereby...

  14. Sleep disturbances in Parkinsonism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Askenasy, J J M

    2003-02-01

    The present article is meant to suggest an approach to the guidelines for the therapy of sleep disturbances in Parkinson's Disease (PD) patients.The factors affecting the quality of life in PD patients are depression, sleep disturbances and dependence. A large review of the literature on sleep disturbances in PD patients, provided the basis for the following classification of the sleep-arousal disturbances in PD patients. We suggest a model based on 3 steps in the treatment of sleep disturbances in PD patients. This model allowing the patient, the spouse or the caregiver a quiet sleep at night, may postpone the retirement and the institutionalization of the PD patient. I. Correct diagnosis of sleep disorders based on detailed anamnesis of the patient and of the spouse or of the caregiver. One week recording on a symptom diary (log) by the patient or the caregiver. Correct diagnosis of sleep disorders co morbidities. Selection of the most appropriate sleep test among: polysomnography (PSG), multiple sleep latency test (MSLT), multiple wake latency test (MWLT), Epworth Sleepiness Scale, actigraphy or video-PSG. II. The nonspecific therapeutic approach consists in: a) Checking the sleep effect on motor performance, is it beneficial, worse or neutral. b) Psycho-physical assistance. c) Dopaminergic adjustment is necessary owing to the progression of the nigrostriatal degeneration and the increased sensitivity of the terminals, which alter the normal modulator mechanisms of the motor centers in PD patients. Among the many neurotransmitters of the nigro-striatal pathway one can distinguish two with a major influence on REM and NonREM sleep. REM sleep corresponds to an increased cholinergic receptor activity and a decreased dopaminergic activity. This is the reason why REM sleep deprivation by suppressing cholinergic receptor activity ameliorates PD motor symptoms. L-Dopa and its agonists by suppressing cholinergic receptors suppress REM sleep. The permanent adjustment

  15. Epigenetic alterations induced by genotoxic occupational and environmental human chemical carcinogens: A systematic literature review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chappell, Grace; Pogribny, Igor P.; Guyton, Kathryn Z.; Rusyn, Ivan

    2016-01-01

    Accumulating evidence suggests that epigenetic alterations play an important role in chemically-induced carcinogenesis. Although the epigenome and genome may be equally important in carcinogenicity, the genotoxicity of chemical agents and exposure-related transcriptomic responses have been more thoroughly studied and characterized. To better understand the evidence for epigenetic alterations of human carcinogens, and the potential association with genotoxic endpoints, we conducted a systematic review of published studies of genotoxic carcinogens that reported epigenetic endpoints. Specifically, we searched for publications reporting epigenetic effects for the 28 agents and occupations included in Monograph Volume 100F of the International Agency for the Research on Cancer (IARC) that were classified as “carcinogenic to humans” (Group 1) with strong evidence of genotoxic mechanisms of carcinogenesis. We identified a total of 158 studies that evaluated epigenetic alterations for 12 of these 28 carcinogenic agents and occupations (1,3-butadiene, 4-aminobiphenyl, aflatoxins, benzene, benzidine, benzo[a]pyrene, coke production, formaldehyde, occupational exposure as a painter, sulfur mustard, and vinyl chloride). Aberrant DNA methylation was most commonly studied, followed by altered expression of non-coding RNAs and histone changes (totaling 85, 59 and 25 studies, respectively). For 3 carcinogens (aflatoxins, benzene and benzo[a]pyrene), 10 or more studies reported epigenetic effects. However, epigenetic studies were sparse for the remaining 9 carcinogens; for 4 agents, only 1 or 2 published reports were identified. While further research is needed to better identify carcinogenesis-associated epigenetic perturbations for many potential carcinogens, published reports on specific epigenetic endpoints can be systematically identified and increasingly incorporated in cancer hazard assessments. PMID:27234561

  16. Do neural tube defects lead to structural alterations in the human bladder?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pazos, Helena M F; Lobo, Márcio Luiz de P; Costa, Waldemar S; Sampaio, Francisco J B; Cardoso, Luis Eduardo M; Favorito, Luciano Alves

    2011-05-01

    Anencephaly is the most severe neural tube defect in human fetuses. The objective of this paper is to analyze the structure of the bladder in anencephalic human fetuses. We studied 40 bladders of normal human fetuses (20 male and 20 female, aged 14 to 23 WPC) and 12 bladders of anencephalic fetuses (5 male and 7 female, aged 18 to 22 WPC). The bladders were removed and processed by routine histological techniques. Stereological analysis of collagen, elastic system fibers and smooth muscle was performed in sections. Data were expressed as volumetric density (Vv-%). The images were captured with Olympus BX51 microscopy and Olympus DP70 camera. The stereological analysis was done using the software Image Pro and Image J. For biochemical analysis, samples were fixed in acetone, and collagen concentrations were expressed as micrograms of hydroxyproline per mg of dry tissue. Means were statistically compared using the unpaired t-test (p<0.05). We observed a significant increase (p<0.0001) in the Vv of collagen in the bladders of anencephalic fetuses (69.71%) when compared to normal fetuses (52.74%), and a significant decrease (p<0.0001) in the Vv of smooth muscle cells in the bladders of anencephalic fetuses (23.96%) when compared to normal fetuses (38.35%). The biochemical analyses showed a higher concentration of total collagen in the bladders of anencephalic fetuses (37354 µg/mg) when compared to normal fetuses (48117 µg/mg, p<0.02). The structural alterations of the bladder found in this study may suggest the existence of functional alterations in the bladder of anencephalic human fetuses.

  17. Remote sensing captures varying temporal patterns of vegetation between human-altered and natural landscapes.

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    Leong, Misha; Roderick, George K

    2015-01-01

    Global change has led to shifts in phenology, potentially disrupting species interactions such as plant-pollinator relationships. Advances in remote sensing techniques allow one to detect vegetation phenological diversity between different land use types, but it is not clear how this translates to other communities in the ecosystem. Here, we investigated the phenological diversity of the vegetation across a human-altered landscape including urban, agricultural, and natural land use types. We found that the patterns of change in the vegetation indices (EVI and NDVI) of human-altered landscapes are out of synchronization with the phenology in neighboring natural California grassland habitat. Comparing these findings to a spatio-temporal pollinator distribution dataset, EVI and NDVI were significant predictors of total bee abundance, a relationship that improved with time lags. This evidence supports the importance of differences in temporal dynamics between land use types. These findings also highlight the potential to utilize remote sensing data to make predictions for components of biodiversity that have tight vegetation associations, such as pollinators.

  18. Observations on morphologic changes in the aging and degenerating human disc: Secondary collagen alterations

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    Hanley Edward N

    2002-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In the annulus, collagen fibers that make up the lamellae have a wavy, planar crimped pattern. This crimping plays a role in disc biomechanical function by allowing collagen fibers to stretch during compression. The relationship between morphologic changes in the aging/degenerating disc and collagen crimping have not been explored. Methods Ultrastructural studies were performed on annulus tissue from 29 control (normal donors (aged newborn to 79 years and surgical specimens from 49 patients (aged 16 to 77 years. Light microscopy and specialized image analysis to visualize crimping was performed on additional control and surgical specimens. Human intervertebral disc tissue from the annulus was obtained in a prospective morphologic study of the annulus. Studies were approved by the authors' Human Subjects Institutional Review Board. Results Three types of morphologic changes were found to alter the crimping morphology of collagen: 1 encircling layers of unusual matrix disrupted the lamellar collagen architecture; 2 collagen fibers were reduced in amount, and 3 collagen was absent in regions with focal matrix loss. Conclusions Although proteoglycan loss is well recognized as playing a role in the decreased shock absorber function of the aging/degenerating disc, collagen changes have received little attention. This study suggests that important stretch responses of collagen made possible by collagen crimping may be markedly altered by morphologic changes during aging/degeneration and may contribute to the early tissue changes involved in annular tears.

  19. Morphological alteration of the Dráva as the result of human impact

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    Tímea Kiss

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The Croatian-Hungarian border section of the Dráva River has been undisturbed for almost a century, and it is characterised by unique fluvial morphology (braided pattern and islands supporting rich habitats and wildlife. However, during the last decades human impact became more and moreintensive. Between 1975 and 1989 three water reservoirs were built on the Croatian section of the river, just 16 km from the beginning of the border-section, altering the hydrology and the sediment characteristics of the river. On a local scale cut-offs, revetments and groynes were built. The aim of the study was to evaluate the effect of these human interventions. As the result of the alteration of the hydrology the channel pattern of the Dráva has been changing from braided to meandering, though on the upstream meandering part the territory and number of islands increased due to the drop of water stages. A cut-off and a groyne influenced only the morphology of a short section. As the result of the cut-off braided pattern became more pronounced, and the groyne caused intensive channel aggradation and gave way to lateral island development.

  20. Will Global Climate Change Alter Fundamental Human Immune Reactivity: Implications for Child Health?

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    Swaminathan, Ashwin; Lucas, Robyn M; Harley, David; McMichael, Anthony J

    2014-11-11

    The human immune system is an interface across which many climate change sensitive exposures can affect health outcomes. Gaining an understanding of the range of potential effects that climate change could have on immune function will be of considerable importance, particularly for child health, but has, as yet, received minimal research attention. We postulate several mechanisms whereby climate change sensitive exposures and conditions will subtly impair aspects of the human immune response, thereby altering the distribution of vulnerability within populations-particularly for children-to infection and disease. Key climate change-sensitive pathways include under-nutrition, psychological stress and exposure to ambient ultraviolet radiation, with effects on susceptibility to infection, allergy and autoimmune diseases. Other climate change sensitive exposures may also be important and interact, either additively or synergistically, to alter health risks. Conducting directed research in this area is imperative as the potential public health implications of climate change-induced weakening of the immune system at both individual and population levels are profound. This is particularly relevant for the already vulnerable children of the developing world, who will bear a disproportionate burden of future adverse environmental and geopolitical consequences of climate change.

  1. Will Global Climate Change Alter Fundamental Human Immune Reactivity: Implications for Child Health?

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    Ashwin Swaminathan

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The human immune system is an interface across which many climate change sensitive exposures can affect health outcomes. Gaining an understanding of the range of potential effects that climate change could have on immune function will be of considerable importance, particularly for child health, but has, as yet, received minimal research attention. We postulate several mechanisms whereby climate change sensitive exposures and conditions will subtly impair aspects of the human immune response, thereby altering the distribution of vulnerability within populations—particularly for children—to infection and disease. Key climate change-sensitive pathways include under-nutrition, psychological stress and exposure to ambient ultraviolet radiation, with effects on susceptibility to infection, allergy and autoimmune diseases. Other climate change sensitive exposures may also be important and interact, either additively or synergistically, to alter health risks. Conducting directed research in this area is imperative as the potential public health implications of climate change-induced weakening of the immune system at both individual and population levels are profound. This is particularly relevant for the already vulnerable children of the developing world, who will bear a disproportionate burden of future adverse environmental and geopolitical consequences of climate change.

  2. Matrigel alters the pathophysiology of orthotopic human breast adenocarcinoma xenografts with implications for nanomedicine evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shuhendler, Adam J; Prasad, Preethy; Cai, Ping; Hui, Kelvin K W; Henderson, Jeffrey T; Rauth, Andrew M; Wu, Xiao Yu

    2013-08-01

    Matrigel, a mouse sarcoma-derived basement membrane protein mixture, is frequently used to facilitate human tumor xenograft growth in rodents. Despite its known effects on tumor growth and metastasis, its impact on tumor pathophysiology and preclinical evaluation of nanomedicines in tumor xenografts has not been reported previously. Herein bilateral MDA435 tumors were established orthotopically with (Mat+) or without (Mat-) co-injection of Matrigel. Tumor perfusion, morphology and nanoparticle retention were evaluated. As compared to Mat- tumors, Mat+tumors exhibited enhanced vascular perfusion and lymphatic flow, greater blood vessel and lymphatic growth within the tumor core, and more deformation and collapse of lymphatics in tumor-associated lymph nodes. These changes were accompanied by reduced nanoparticle retention in Mat+tumors. The results suggest that Matrigel is not a passive medium for tumor growth, but rather significantly alters long-term tumor architecture. These findings have significant implications for the evaluation of therapeutic nanomedicine in xenograft mouse models. Matrigel is utilized in facilitating human tumor xenograft growth in rodents. The authors demonstrate that Matrigel is not a passive medium for tumor growth; instead it significantly alters long-term tumor architecture, with major implications in the evaluation of therapeutic nanomedicine in xenograft mouse models. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Seasonal changes in the human alteration of fire regimes beyond the climate forcing

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    Fréjaville, Thibaut; Curt, Thomas

    2017-03-01

    Human activities have altered fire regimes for millennia by suppressing or enhancing natural fire activity. However, whether these anthropogenic pressures on fire activity have exceeded and will surpass climate forcing still remains uncertain. We tested if, how and the extent to which seasonal fire activity in southern France has recently (1976-2009) deviated from climate-expected trends. The latter were simulated using an ensemble of detrended fire-climate models. We found both seasonal and regional contrasts in climatic effects through a mixture of drought-driven and fuel-limited fire regimes. Dry contemporary conditions chiefly drove fire frequency and burned area, although higher fire activity was related to wetter conditions in the last three years. Surprisingly, the relative importance of preceding wet conditions was higher in winter than in summer, illustrating the strong potential dependency of regional fire-climate relationships on the human use and control of fires. In the Mediterranean mountains, warm winters and springs favour extensive fires in the following dry summer. These results highlight that increasing dryness with climate change could have antagonistic effects on fire regime by leading to larger fires in summer (moisture-limited), but lower fire activity in winter (fuel-limited fire regime). Furthermore, fire trends have significantly diverged from climatic expectations, with a strong negative alteration in fire activity in the Mediterranean lowlands and the summer burned area in the mountains. In contrast, alteration of winter fire frequency in the Mediterranean and Temperate mountains has shifted from positive to negative (or null) trends during the mid-1990s, a period when fire suppression policy underwent major revisions. Our findings demonstrate that changes in land-use and fire suppression policy have probably exceeded the strength of climate change effects on changing fire regime in southern Europe, making regional predictions of future

  4. Effects of climate change and anthropogenic modification on a disturbance-dependent species in a large riverine system

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    Zeigler, Sara; Catlin, Daniel H.; Bomberger Brown, M.; Fraser, J.D.; Dinan, Lauren R.; Hunt, Kelsi L.; Jorgensen, Joel G.; Karpanty, Sarah M.

    2017-01-01

    Humans have altered nearly every natural disturbance regime on the planet through climate and land-use change, and in many instances, these processes may have interacting effects. For example, projected shifts in temperature and precipitation will likely influence disturbance regimes already affected by anthropogenic fire suppression or river impoundments. Understanding how disturbance-dependent species respond to complex and interacting environmental changes is important for conservation efforts. Using field-based demographic and movement rates, we conducted a metapopulation viability analysis for piping plovers (Charadrius melodus), a threatened disturbance-dependent species, along the Missouri and Platte rivers in the Great Plains of North America. Our aim was to better understand current and projected future metapopulation dynamics given that natural disturbances (flooding or high-flow events) have been greatly reduced by river impoundments and that climate change could further alter the disturbance regime. Although metapopulation abundance has been substantially reduced under the current suppressed disturbance regime (high-flow return interval ~ 20 yr), it could grow if the frequency of high-flow events increases as predicted under likely climate change scenarios. We found that a four-year return interval would maximize metapopulation abundance, and all subpopulations in the metapopulation would act as sources at a return interval of 15 yr or less. Regardless of disturbance frequency, the presence of even a small, stable source subpopulation buffered the metapopulation and sustained a low metapopulation extinction risk. Therefore, climate change could have positive effects in ecosystems where disturbances have been anthropogenically suppressed when climatic shifts move disturbance regimes toward more historical patterns. Furthermore, stable source populations, even if unintentionally maintained through anthropogenic activities, may be critical for the

  5. 3'-Azido-3'-deoxythymidine (AZT) induces apoptosis and alters metabolic enzyme activity in human placenta

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Collier, Abby C.; Helliwell, Rachel J.A.; Keelan, Jeffrey A.; Paxton, James W.; Mitchell, Murray D.; Tingle, Malcolm D.

    2003-01-01

    The anti-HIV drug 3'-azido-3'-deoxythymidine (AZT) is the drug of choice for preventing maternal-fetal HIV transmission during pregnancy. Our aim was to assess the cytotoxic effects of AZT on human placenta in vitro. The mechanisms of AZT-induced effects were investigated using JEG-3 choriocarcinoma cells and primary explant cultures from term and first-trimester human placentas. Cytotoxicity measures included trypan blue exclusion, MTT, and reactive oxygen species (ROS) assays. Apoptosis was measured with an antibody specific to cleaved caspase-3 and by rescue of cells by the general caspase inhibitor Boc-D-FMK. The effect of AZT on the activities of glutathione-S-transferase, β-glucuronidase, UDP-glucuronosyl transferase, cytochrome P450 (CYP) 1A, and CYP reductase (CYPR) in the placenta was assessed using biochemical assays and immunoblotting. AZT increased ROS levels, decreased cellular proliferation rates, was toxic to mitochondria, and initiated cell death by a caspase-dependent mechanism in the human placenta in vitro. In the absence of serum, the effects of AZT were amplified in all the models used. AZT also increased the amounts of activity of GST, β-glucuronidase, and CYP1A, whereas UGT and CYPR were decreased. We conclude that AZT causes apoptosis in the placenta and alters metabolizing enzymes in human placental cells. These findings have implications for the safe administration of AZT in pregnancy with respect to the maintenance of integrity of the maternal-fetal barrier

  6. The interplay between climate change, forests, and disturbances

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    Virginia H. Dale; Linda A. Joyce; Steve McNulty; Ronald P. Neilson

    2000-01-01

    Climate change affects forests both directly and indirectly through disturbances. Disturbances are a natural and integral part of forest ecosystems, and climate change can alter these natural interactions. When disturbances exceed their natural range of variation, the change in forest structure and function may be extreme. Each disturbance affects forests differently....

  7. Disturbances in the cerebral perfusion of human immune deficiency virus-1 seropositive asymptomatic subjects: A quantitative tomography study of 18 cases

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tran Dinh, Y.R.; Mamo, H.; Cervoni, J.; Caulin, C.; Saimot, A.C.

    1990-01-01

    Quantitative measurements of cerebral blood flow (CBF) by xenon-133 ( 133 Xe) tomography, together with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), electroencephalography (EEG), psychometric tests, and laboratory analyses were performed on 18 human immunodeficiency virus 1 (HIV-1) seropositive asymptomatic subjects. Abnormalities of cerebral perfusion were observed in 16 cases (88%). These abnormalities were particularly frequent in the frontal regions (77% of cases). MRI demonstrated leucoencephalopathy in only two cases. EEG showed only induced diffuse abnormalities in two cases. Psychometric tests showed restricted moderate disturbances in 55% of patients. These disturbances mostly concerned those sectors involved in cognitive functions and memorization. These results indicate that quantitative measurements of CBF by 133 Xe-SPECT is capable of detecting abnormalities of cerebral perfusion at a very early stage (Phase II) of HIV-1 infection. These abnormalities are indications of disturbances resulting from unidentified metabolic or vascular lesions. This technique appears to be superior to MRI at this stage of the disease's development. It could provide objective information leading to earlier treatment, and prove useful in evaluating potential antiviral chemotherapy

  8. Disturbance Hydrology: Preparing for an Increasingly Disturbed Future

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    Mirus, Benjamin B.; Ebel, Brian A.; Mohr, Christian H.; Zegre, Nicolas

    2017-12-01

    This special issue is the result of several fruitful conference sessions on disturbance hydrology, which started at the 2013 AGU Fall Meeting in San Francisco and have continued every year since. The stimulating presentations and discussions surrounding those sessions have focused on understanding both the disruption of hydrologic functioning following discrete disturbances, as well as the subsequent recovery or change within the affected watershed system. Whereas some hydrologic disturbances are directly linked to anthropogenic activities, such as resource extraction, the contributions to this special issue focus primarily on those with indirect or less pronounced human involvement, such as bark-beetle infestation, wildfire, and other natural hazards. However, human activities are enhancing the severity and frequency of these seemingly natural disturbances, thereby contributing to acute hydrologic problems and hazards. Major research challenges for our increasingly disturbed planet include the lack of continuous pre and postdisturbance monitoring, hydrologic impacts that vary spatially and temporally based on environmental and hydroclimatic conditions, and the preponderance of overlapping or compounding disturbance sequences. In addition, a conceptual framework for characterizing commonalities and differences among hydrologic disturbances is still in its infancy. In this introduction to the special issue, we advance the fusion of concepts and terminology from ecology and hydrology to begin filling this gap. We briefly explore some preliminary approaches for comparing different disturbances and their hydrologic impacts, which provides a starting point for further dialogue and research progress.

  9. Fumaric acid esters can block pro-inflammatory actions of human CRP and ameliorate metabolic disturbances in transgenic spontaneously hypertensive rats.

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    Jan Šilhavý

    Full Text Available Inflammation and oxidative stress have been implicated in the pathogenesis of metabolic disturbances. Esters of fumaric acid, mainly dimethyl fumarate, exhibit immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidative effects. In the current study, we tested the hypothesis that fumaric acid ester (FAE treatment of an animal model of inflammation and metabolic syndrome, the spontaneously hypertensive rat transgenically expressing human C-reactive protein (SHR-CRP, will ameliorate inflammation, oxidative stress, and metabolic disturbances. We studied the effects of FAE treatment by administering Fumaderm, 10 mg/kg body weight for 4 weeks, to male SHR-CRP. Untreated male SHR-CRP rats were used as controls. All rats were fed a high sucrose diet. Compared to untreated controls, rats treated with FAE showed significantly lower levels of endogenous CRP but not transgenic human CRP, and amelioration of inflammation (reduced levels of serum IL6 and TNFα and oxidative stress (reduced levels of lipoperoxidation products in liver, heart, kidney, and plasma. FAE treatment was also associated with lower visceral fat weight and less ectopic fat accumulation in liver and muscle, greater levels of lipolysis, and greater incorporation of glucose into adipose tissue lipids. Analysis of gene expression profiles in the liver with Affymetrix arrays revealed that FAE treatment was associated with differential expression of genes in pathways that involve the regulation of inflammation and oxidative stress. These findings suggest potentially important anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative, and metabolic effects of FAE in a model of inflammation and metabolic disturbances induced by human CRP.

  10. Analysis of human reticulocyte genes reveals altered erythropoiesis: potential use to detect recombinant human erythropoietin doping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varlet-Marie, Emmanuelle; Audran, Michel; Lejeune, Mireille; Bonafoux, Béatrice; Sicart, Marie-Therese; Marti, Jacques; Piquemal, David; Commes, Thérèse

    2004-08-01

    Enhancement of oxygen delivery to tissues is associated with improved sporting performance. One way of enhancing oxygen delivery is to take recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEpo), which is an unethical and potentially dangerous practice. However, detection of the use of rHuEpo remains difficult in situations such as: i) several days after the end of treatment ii) when a treatment with low doses is conducted iii) if the rHuEpo effect is increased by other substances. In an attempt to detect rHuEpo abuse, we selected erythroid gene markers from a SAGE library and analyzed the effects of rHuEpo administration on expression of the HBB, FTL and OAZ genes. Ten athletes were assigned to the rHuEpo or placebo group. The rHuEpo group received subcutaneous injections of rHuEpo (50 UI/kg three times a week, 4 weeks; 20 UI/kg three times a week, 2 weeks). HBB, FTL and OAZ gene profiles were monitored by real time-polymerase chain reaction (PCR) quantification during and for 3 weeks after drug administration. The global analysis of these targeted genes detected in whole blood samples showed a characteristic profile of subjects misusing rHuEpo with a increase above the threshold levels. The individual analysis of OAZ mRNA seemed indicative of rHuEpo treatment. The performance-enhancing effect of rHuEpo treatment is greater than the duration of hematologic changes associated with rHuEpo misuse. Although direct electrophoretic methods to detect rHuEpo have been developed, recombinant isoforms of rHuEpo are not detectable some days after the last subcutaneous injection. To overcome these limitations indirect OFF models have been developed. Our data suggest that, in the near future, it will be possible to consolidate results achievable with the OFF models by analyzing selected erythroid gene markers as a supplement to indirect methods.

  11. Effects of human disturbance on a burrow nesting seabird Efectos de la presencia de humanos en aves marinas que anidan en madrigueras

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    Yuri V. Albores-Barajas

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available During 2004, we followed 72 natural burrows to determine the effects of disturbance on breeding success of Cassin's auklets (Ptychoramphus aleuticus. We used distance from a human settlement or path in the analysis of disturbance. Birds whose burrows were closer to the path or the village had a higher rate of nest abandonment and lower breeding success compared to birds nesting further away from the path or the village. Also, older and more experienced individuals represented a larger proportion of the breeding population on less disturbed areas than on highly disturbed ones, probably as older individuals tend to arrive earlier at the breeding grounds, and failed breeders may change burrow sites to move away from disturbance. P. aleuticus are adversely affected by human activity at colonies even if birds are not handled and burrows are not opened, and this has implications for conservation, and planning of ecotourism. On the long term, this can have negative consequences for this species and others with similar characteristics.Durante el 2004 seguimos 72 nidos de la alcuela (Ptychoramphus aleuticus para determinar los efectos de disturbio en el éxito reproductivo. Utilizamos la distancia del nido a áreas asentamientos humanos o al camino como medidas de disturbio. Los nidos que estaban más cerca de los asentamientos o del camino tuvieron una tasa de abandono mayor y un éxito reproductivo menor en comparación con los nidos que estaban más alejados de las fuentes de disturbio. También observamos que en las zonas menos expuestas la proporción de adultos, con mayor experiencia, era más alta, posiblemente porque los individuos con mayor experiencia llegan antes a la zona de anidación. Las alcuelas son afectadas negativamente por la presencia de los humanos y sus actividades, aunque las aves no entren en contacto directo con los humanos. A largo plazo, esto puede acarrear consecuencias graves para esta especie y otras con caracter

  12. Extracellular Protease Inhibition Alters the Phenotype of Chondrogenically Differentiating Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) in 3D Collagen Microspheres.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Sejin; Li, Yuk Yin; Chan, Barbara Pui

    2016-01-01

    Matrix remodeling of cells is highly regulated by proteases and their inhibitors. Nevertheless, how would the chondrogenesis of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) be affected, when the balance of the matrix remodeling is disturbed by inhibiting matrix proteases, is incompletely known. Using a previously developed collagen microencapsulation platform, we investigated whether exposing chondrogenically differentiating MSCs to intracellular and extracellular protease inhibitors will affect the extracellular matrix remodeling and hence the outcomes of chondrogenesis. Results showed that inhibition of matrix proteases particularly the extracellular ones favors the phenotype of fibrocartilage rather than hyaline cartilage in chondrogenically differentiating hMSCs by upregulating type I collagen protein deposition and type II collagen gene expression without significantly altering the hypertrophic markers at gene level. This study suggests the potential of manipulating extracellular proteases to alter the outcomes of hMSC chondrogenesis, contributing to future development of differentiation protocols for fibrocartilage tissues for intervertebral disc and meniscus tissue engineering.

  13. Extracellular Protease Inhibition Alters the Phenotype of Chondrogenically Differentiating Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs in 3D Collagen Microspheres.

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    Sejin Han

    Full Text Available Matrix remodeling of cells is highly regulated by proteases and their inhibitors. Nevertheless, how would the chondrogenesis of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs be affected, when the balance of the matrix remodeling is disturbed by inhibiting matrix proteases, is incompletely known. Using a previously developed collagen microencapsulation platform, we investigated whether exposing chondrogenically differentiating MSCs to intracellular and extracellular protease inhibitors will affect the extracellular matrix remodeling and hence the outcomes of chondrogenesis. Results showed that inhibition of matrix proteases particularly the extracellular ones favors the phenotype of fibrocartilage rather than hyaline cartilage in chondrogenically differentiating hMSCs by upregulating type I collagen protein deposition and type II collagen gene expression without significantly altering the hypertrophic markers at gene level. This study suggests the potential of manipulating extracellular proteases to alter the outcomes of hMSC chondrogenesis, contributing to future development of differentiation protocols for fibrocartilage tissues for intervertebral disc and meniscus tissue engineering.

  14. Role of Nrf2 in preventing oxidative stress induced chloride current alteration in human lung cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canella, Rita; Benedusi, Mascia; Martini, Marta; Cervellati, Franco; Cavicchio, Carlotta; Valacchi, Giuseppe

    2018-08-01

    The lung tissue is one of the main targets of oxidative stress due to external sources and respiratory activity. In our previous work, we have demonstrated in that O 3 exposure alters the Cl - current-voltage relationship, with the appearance of a large outward rectifier component mainly sustained by outward rectifier chloride channels (ORCCs) in human lung epithelial cells (A549 line). In the present study, we have performed patch clamp experiments, in order to identify which one of the O 3 byproducts (4hydroxynonenal (HNE) and/or H 2 O 2 ) was responsible for chloride current change. While 4HNE exposition (up to 25 μM for 30' before electrophysiological analysis) did not reproduce O 3 effect, H 2 O 2 produced by glucose oxidase 10 mU for 24 hr before electrophysiological analysis mimicked O 3 response. This result was confirmed treating the cell with catalase (CAT) before O 3 exposure (1,000 U/ml for 2 hr): CAT was able to rescue Cl - current alteration. Since CAT is regulated by Nrf2 transcription factor, we pre-treated the cells with the Nrf2 activators, resveratrol and tBHQ. Immunochemical and immunocytochemical results showed Nrf2 activation with both substances that lead to prevent OS effect on Cl - current. These data bring new insights into the mechanisms involved in OS-induced lung tissue damage, pointing out the role of H 2 O 2 in chloride current alteration and the ability of Nfr2 activation in preventing this effect. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. New Altered Non-Fibrillar Collagens in Human Dilated Cardiomyopathy: Role in the Remodeling Process.

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    Carolina Gil-Cayuela

    Full Text Available In dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM, cardiac failure is accompanied by profound alterations of extracellular matrix associated with the progression of cardiac dilation and left ventricular (LV dysfunction. Recently, we reported alterations of non-fibrillar collagen expression in ischemic cardiomyopathy linked to fibrosis and cardiac remodeling. We suspect that expression changes in genes coding for non-fibrillar collagens may have a potential role in DCM development.This study sought to analyze changes in the expression profile of non-fibrillar collagen genes in patients with DCM and to examine relationships between cardiac remodeling parameters and the expression levels of these genes.Twenty-three human left ventricle tissue samples were obtained from DCM patients (n = 13 undergoing heart transplantation and control donors (n = 10 for RNA sequencing analysis. We found increased mRNA levels of six non-fibrillar collagen genes, such as COL4A5, COL9A1, COL21A1, and COL23A1 (P < 0.05 for all, not previously described in DCM. Protein levels of COL8A1 and COL16A1 (P < 0.05 for both, were correspondingly increased. We also identified TGF-β1 significantly upregulated and related to both COL8A1 and COL16A1. Interestingly, we found a significant relationship between LV mass index and the gene expression level of COL8A1 (r = 0.653, P < 0.05.In our research, we identified new non-fibrillar collagens with altered expression in DCM, being COL8A1 overexpression directly related to LV mass index, suggesting that they may be involved in the progression of cardiac dilation and remodeling.

  16. Early superoxide dismutase alterations during SV40-transformation of human fibroblasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bravard, A; Hoffschir, F; Sabatier, L; Ricoul, M; Pinton, A; Cassingena, R; Estrade, S; Luccioni, C; Dutrillaux, B

    1992-11-11

    The expression of superoxide dismutases (SOD) 1 and 2 was studied in 4 clones of human fibroblasts after their infection by simian virus 40 (SV40), in parallel with the alterations of chromosomes 21 and chromosome 6q arms, carrying the genes that encode for SOD1 and SOD2 respectively. For all clones, a similar scheme with 2 main phases was observed for both chromosome and SOD variations. The first phase, defined as the pre-crisis phase, was characterized by chromosomal instability, but maintenance of normal numbers of chromosome 6q arms and chromosomes 21. The level of SOD2 mRNA was high, while SOD2 activity and immunoreactive protein were low. SOD1 protein and activity were decreased. In the second phase, defined as the post-crisis phase, the accumulation of clonal chromosomal rearrangements led to the loss of 6q arms, while the number of chromosomes 21 remained normal. SOD2 mRNA level was decreased and SOD2 immunoreactive protein and activity remained low. SOD1 protein and activity increased with passages, reaching values similar to those of control cells at late passages. As in established SV40-transformed human fibroblast cell lines, good correlation was found between SOD2 activity and the relative number of 6q arms. These results allow us to reconstruct the sequence of events leading to the decrease of SOD2, a possible tumor-suppressor gene, during the process of SV40-transformation of human fibroblasts.

  17. Grooved surface topography alters matrix-metalloproteinase production by human fibroblasts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brydone, Alistair S; Dominic Meek, R M; Dalby, Matthew J; Berry, Catherine C; McNamara, Laura E

    2011-01-01

    Extracellular matrix (ECM) remodelling is an essential physiological process in which matrix-metalloproteinases (MMPs) have a key role. Manipulating the manner in which cells produce MMPs and ECMs may enable the creation of a desired tissue type, i.e. effect repair, or the prevention of tissue invasion (e.g. metastasis). The aim of this project was to determine if culturing fibroblasts on grooved topography altered collagen deposition or MMP production. Human fibroblasts were seeded on planar or grooved polycaprolactone substrates (grooves were 12.5 μm wide with varying depths of 240 nm, 540 nm or 2300 nm). Cell behaviour and collagen production were studied using fluorescence microscopy and the spent culture medium was assessed using gel zymography to detect MMPs. Total collagen deposition was high on the 240 nm deep grooves, but decreased as the groove depth increased, i.e. as cell contact guidance decreased. There was an increase in gelatinase on the 2300 nm deep grooved topography and there was a difference in the temporal expression of MMP-3 observed on the planar surface compared to the 540 nm and 2300 nm topographies. These results show that topography can alter collagen and MMP production. A fuller understanding of these processes may permit the design of surfaces tailored to tissue regeneration e.g. tendon repair.

  18. Common raven occurrence in relation to energy transmission line corridors transiting human-altered sagebrush steppe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Howe, Kristy B.; Casazza, Michael L.; Delehanty, David J.

    2014-01-01

    Energy-related infrastructure and other human enterprises within sagebrush steppe of the American West often results in changes that promote common raven (Corvus corax; hereafter, raven) populations. Ravens, a generalist predator capable of behavioral innovation, present a threat to many species of conservation concern. We evaluate the effects of detailed features of an altered landscape on the probability of raven occurrence using extensive raven survey (n= 1045) and mapping data from southern Idaho, USA. We found nonlinear relationships between raven occurrence and distances to transmission lines, roads, and facilities. Most importantly, raven occurrence was greater with presence of transmission lines up to 2.2 km from the corridor.We further explain variation in raven occurrence along anthropogenic features based on the amount of non-native vegetation and cover type edge, such that ravens select fragmented sagebrush stands with patchy, exotic vegetative introgression. Raven occurrence also increased with greater length of edge formed by the contact of big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentate spp.) with non-native vegetation cover types. In consideration of increasing alteration of sagebrush steppe, these findings will be useful for planning energy transmission corridor placement and other management activities where conservation of sagebrush obligate species is a priority.

  19. Lipid alterations in lipid rafts from Alzheimer's disease human brain cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martín, Virginia; Fabelo, Noemí; Santpere, Gabriel; Puig, Berta; Marín, Raquel; Ferrer, Isidre; Díaz, Mario

    2010-01-01

    Lipid rafts are membrane microdomains intimately associated with cell signaling. These biochemical microstructures are characterized by their high contents of sphingolipids, cholesterol and saturated fatty acids and a reduced content of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). Here, we have purified lipid rafts of human frontal brain cortex from normal and Alzheimer's disease (AD) and characterized their biochemical lipid composition. The results revealed that lipid rafts from AD brains exhibit aberrant lipid profiles compared to healthy brains. In particular, lipid rafts from AD brains displayed abnormally low levels of n-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFA, mainly 22:6n-3, docosahexaenoic acid) and monoenes (mainly 18:1n-9, oleic acid), as well as reduced unsaturation and peroxidability indexes. Also, multiple relationships between phospholipids and fatty acids were altered in AD lipid rafts. Importantly, no changes were observed in the mole percentage of lipid classes and fatty acids in rafts from normal brains throughout the lifespan (24-85 years). These indications point to the existence of homeostatic mechanisms preserving lipid raft status in normal frontal cortex. The disruption of such mechanisms in AD brains leads to a considerable increase in lipid raft order and viscosity, which may explain the alterations in lipid raft signaling observed in AD.

  20. Grooved surface topography alters matrix-metalloproteinase production by human fibroblasts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brydone, Alistair S; Dominic Meek, R M [Department of Orthopaedics, Southern General Hospital, 1345 Govan Road, Glasgow G51 4TF (United Kingdom); Dalby, Matthew J; Berry, Catherine C; McNamara, Laura E, E-mail: alibrydone@gmail.com [Centre for Cell Engineering, Joseph Black Building, Institute of Molecular, Cell and Systems Biology, College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ (United Kingdom)

    2011-06-15

    Extracellular matrix (ECM) remodelling is an essential physiological process in which matrix-metalloproteinases (MMPs) have a key role. Manipulating the manner in which cells produce MMPs and ECMs may enable the creation of a desired tissue type, i.e. effect repair, or the prevention of tissue invasion (e.g. metastasis). The aim of this project was to determine if culturing fibroblasts on grooved topography altered collagen deposition or MMP production. Human fibroblasts were seeded on planar or grooved polycaprolactone substrates (grooves were 12.5 {mu}m wide with varying depths of 240 nm, 540 nm or 2300 nm). Cell behaviour and collagen production were studied using fluorescence microscopy and the spent culture medium was assessed using gel zymography to detect MMPs. Total collagen deposition was high on the 240 nm deep grooves, but decreased as the groove depth increased, i.e. as cell contact guidance decreased. There was an increase in gelatinase on the 2300 nm deep grooved topography and there was a difference in the temporal expression of MMP-3 observed on the planar surface compared to the 540 nm and 2300 nm topographies. These results show that topography can alter collagen and MMP production. A fuller understanding of these processes may permit the design of surfaces tailored to tissue regeneration e.g. tendon repair.

  1. Alterations in the extracellular matrix organization associated with the reexpression of tumorigenicity in human cell hybrids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Der, C J; Stanbridge, E J

    1980-10-15

    The expression of fibronectin on the cell surface was evaluated on a series of intraspecific human cell hybrids formed between HeLa and normal fibroblast strains. Although these hybrids continued to express many of the in vitro transformation properties of their corresponding tumorigenic HeLa parent, they were now unable to form tumors when inoculated into athymic nude mice. From these suppressed hybrid populations, rare tumorigenic segregant subpopulations arose which had regained their tumorigenic capacity. A comparison of the expression of fibronectin on the cell surface was made between these tumorigenic segregant cell lines and their corresponding non-tumorigenic HeLa/fibroblast hybrid. Following specific immunofluorescent staining for fibronectin, a striking alteration in the cell surface organization was observed to correspond with the reexpression of tumorigenicity in these hybrids. Tumorigenic HeLa/fibroblast hybrids were also significantly altered in both their cellular and colonial morphology. Double immunofluorescent staining to simultaneously visualize both surface fibronectin and collagen revealed that these two extracellular matrix proteins displayed an extensive degree of codistribution and expressed a coordinate shift in organization which correlated with the appearance of tumorigenic segregant hybrid populations. These observations are in agreement with the apparently close structural association between fibronectin and collagen and suggest that the organization of these two components in the extracellular matrix may be an important determinant for in vivo growth potential.

  2. Glycation alters ligand binding, enzymatic, and pharmacological properties of human albumin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baraka-Vidot, Jennifer; Planesse, Cynthia; Meilhac, Olivier; Militello, Valeria; van den Elsen, Jean; Bourdon, Emmanuel; Rondeau, Philippe

    2015-05-19

    Albumin, the major circulating protein in blood plasma, can be subjected to an increased level of glycation in a diabetic context. Albumin exerts crucial pharmacological activities through its drug binding capacity, i.e., ketoprofen, and via its esterase-like activity, allowing the conversion of prodrugs into active drugs. In this study, the impact of the glucose-mediated glycation on the pharmacological and biochemical properties of human albumin was investigated. Aggregation product levels and the redox state were quantified to assess the impact of glycation-mediated changes on the structural properties of albumin. Glucose-mediated changes in ketoprofen binding properties and esterase-like activity were evaluated using fluorescence spectroscopy and p-nitrophenyl acetate hydrolysis assays, respectively. With the exception of oxidative parameters, significant dose-dependent alterations in biochemical and functional properties of in vitro glycated albumin were observed. We also found that the dose-dependent increase in levels of glycation and protein aggregation and average molecular mass changes correlated with a gradual decrease in the affinity of albumin for ketoprofen and its esterase-like property. In parallel, significant alterations in both pharmacological properties were also evidenced in albumin purified from diabetic patients. Partial least-squares regression analyses established a significant correlation between glycation-mediated changes in biochemical and pharmacological properties of albumin, highlighting the important role for glycation in the variability of the drug response in a diabetic situation.

  3. ''Normal'' tissues from humans exposed to radium contain an alteration in the c-mos locus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huberman, E.; Schlenker, R.A.; Hardwick, J.P.

    1989-01-01

    The structures of a number of human proto-oncogenes from persons with internal systemic exposure to radium were analyzed by restriction enzyme digestion and southern blotting of their DNA. Two extra c-mos Eco R1 restriction-fragment-length bands of 5.0 kb and 5.5 kb were found in tissue DNA from six of seven individuals. The extra c-mos bands were detected in DNA from many, but not all, of the tissues of the individuals exposed to radium. Our results suggest that the c-mos restriction-fragment-length alterations (RFLA) found in individuals exposed to radium were induced rather than inherited, are epigenetic in origin, and most likely result from changes in the methylation of bases surrounding the single exon of the c-mos proto-oncogene. 7 refs., 3 figs., 2 tabs

  4. Trace element content and molecular biodiversity in the epiphytic moss Leptodon smithii: two independent tracers of human disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spagnuolo, Valeria; Terracciano, Stefano; Giordano, Simonetta

    2009-03-01

    This paper focuses on chemical composition of the epiphytic moss Leptodon smithii, gathered on Quercus ilex bark, assessed in seven sites located in urban and extra-urban/remote areas of southern Italy, a poorly surveyed geographic area. The concentrations of Cr, Cu, Pb and Zn in moss tissue are generally more abundant in moss gathered in the urban sites; among extra-urban/remote sites Valle delle Ferriere showed the highest metal concentrations, mostly related to an industrial activity occurred in the past. L. smithii chemistry seems influenced by airborne dust locally enhanced by erosion phenomena, long-range transport of pollutants and marine aerosols. Element content in moss is compared with genetic variability of L. smithii estimated in the same sites. Pearson's correlation coefficient between gene diversity and total element load (r=-0.851; p=0.03) suggests that anthropogenic pressure, determining habitat disturbance and fragmentation, leads both to genetic impoverishment consequent to population shrink, and to a higher accumulation in moss tissues, as a consequence of increased airborne major/trace elements. Thus, the coupled evaluation of chemical composition in mosses and gene diversity may prove a useful tool to highlight environmental disturbance in a gradient of land use.

  5. Infection with the oncogenic human papillomavirus type 59 alters protein components of the cornified cell envelope

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lehr, Elizabeth; Brown, Darron R.

    2003-01-01

    Infection of the genital tract with human papillomaviruses (HPVs) leads to proliferative and dysplastic epithelial lesions. The mechanisms used by the virus to escape the infected keratinocyte are not well understood. Infection of keratinocytes with HPV does not cause lysis, the mechanism used by many viruses to release newly formed virions. For HPV 11, a type associated with a low risk of neoplastic disease, the cornified cell envelope (CCE) of infected keratinocytes is thin and fragile, and transcription of loricrin, the major CCE protein, is reduced. The effects of high-risk HPV infection on components of the CCE have not been previously reported. HPV 59, an oncogenic genital type related to HPV types 18 and 45 was identified in a condylomata acuminata lesion. An extract of this lesion was used to infect human foreskin fragments, which were grown in athymic mice as xenografts. Continued propagation using extracts of xenografts permitted growth of additional HPV 59-infected xenografts. CCEs purified from HPV 59-infected xenografts displayed subtle morphologic abnormalities compared to those derived from uninfected xenografts. HPV 59-infected xenografts revealed dysplastic-appearing cells with mitotic figures. Detection of loricrin, involucrin, and cytokeratin 10 was reduced in HPV 59-infected epithelium, while small proline-rich protein 3 (SPR3) was increased. Reduction in loricrin was most apparent in regions of epithelium containing abundant HPV 59 DNA. Compared to uninfected epithelium, loricrin transcription was decreased in HPV 59-infected epithelium. We conclude that HPV 59 shares with HPV 11 the ability to alter CCE components and to specifically reduce transcription of the loricrin gene. Because loricrin is the major CCE protein, a reduction in this component could alter the physical properties of the CCE, thus facilitating virion release

  6. Standard colonic lavage alters the natural state of mucosal-associated microbiota in the human colon.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Harrell

    Full Text Available Past studies of the human intestinal microbiota are potentially confounded by the common practice of using bowel-cleansing preparations. We examined if colonic lavage changes the natural state of enteric mucosal-adherent microbes in healthy human subjects.Twelve healthy individuals were divided into three groups; experimental group, control group one, and control group two. Subjects in the experimental group underwent an un-prepped flexible sigmoidoscopy with biopsies. Within two weeks, subjects were given a standard polyethylene glycol-based bowel cleansing preparation followed by a second flexible sigmoidoscopy. Subjects in control group one underwent two un-prepped flexible sigmoidoscopies within one week. Subjects in the second control group underwent an un-prepped flexible sigmoidoscopy followed by a second flexible sigmoidoscopy after a 24-hour clear liquid diet within one week. The mucosa-associated microbial communities from the two procedures in each subject were compared using 16S rRNA gene based terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP, and library cloning and sequencing.Clone library sequencing analysis showed that there were changes in the composition of the mucosa-associated microbiota in subjects after colonic lavage. These changes were not observed in our control groups. Standard bowel preparation altered the diversity of mucosa-associated microbiota. Taxonomic classification did not reveal significant changes at the phylum level, but there were differences observed at the genus level.Standard bowel cleansing preparation altered the mucosal-adherent microbiota in all of our subjects, although the degree of change was variable. These findings underscore the importance of considering the confounding effects of bowel preparation when designing experiments exploring the gut microbiota.

  7. Exercise Alters Gut Microbiota Composition and Function in Lean and Obese Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Jacob M; Mailing, Lucy J; Niemiro, Grace M; Moore, Rachel; Cook, Marc D; White, Bryan A; Holscher, Hannah D; Woods, Jeffrey A

    2018-04-01

    Exercise is associated with altered gut microbial composition, but studies have not investigated whether the gut microbiota and associated metabolites are modulated by exercise training in humans. We explored the impact of 6 wk of endurance exercise on the composition, functional capacity, and metabolic output of the gut microbiota in lean and obese adults with multiple-day dietary controls before outcome variable collection. Thirty-two lean (n = 18 [9 female]) and obese (n = 14 [11 female]), previously sedentary subjects participated in 6 wk of supervised, endurance-based exercise training (3 d·wk) that progressed from 30 to 60 min·d and from moderate (60% of HR reserve) to vigorous intensity (75% HR reserve). Subsequently, participants returned to a sedentary lifestyle activity for a 6-wk washout period. Fecal samples were collected before and after 6 wk of exercise, as well as after the sedentary washout period, with 3-d dietary controls in place before each collection. β-diversity analysis revealed that exercise-induced alterations of the gut microbiota were dependent on obesity status. Exercise increased fecal concentrations of short-chain fatty acids in lean, but not obese, participants. Exercise-induced shifts in metabolic output of the microbiota paralleled changes in bacterial genes and taxa capable of short-chain fatty acid production. Lastly, exercise-induced changes in the microbiota were largely reversed once exercise training ceased. These findings suggest that exercise training induces compositional and functional changes in the human gut microbiota that are dependent on obesity status, independent of diet and contingent on the sustainment of exercise.

  8. Endoplasmic reticulum stress induces different molecular structural alterations in human dilated and ischemic cardiomyopathy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Ortega

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The endoplasmic reticulum (ER is a multifunctional organelle responsible for the synthesis and folding of proteins as well as for signalling and calcium storage, that has been linked to the contraction-relaxation process. Perturbations of its homeostasis activate a stress response in diseases such as heart failure (HF. To elucidate the alterations in ER molecular components, we analyze the levels of ER stress and structure proteins in human dilated (DCM and ischemic (ICM cardiomyopathies, and its relationship with patient's functional status. METHODS AND RESULTS: We examined 52 explanted human hearts from DCM (n = 21 and ICM (n = 21 subjects and 10 non-failing hearts as controls. Our results showed specific changes in stress (IRE1, p<0.05; p-IRE1, p<0.05 and structural (Reticulon 1, p<0.01 protein levels. The stress proteins GRP78, XBP1 and ATF6 as well as the structural proteins RRBP1, kinectin, and Nogo A and B, were upregulated in both DCM and ICM patients. Immunofluorescence results were concordant with quantified Western blot levels. Moreover, we show a novel relationship between stress and structural proteins. RRBP1, involved in procollagen synthesis and remodeling, was related with left ventricular function. CONCLUSIONS: In the present study, we report the existence of alterations in ER stress response and shaping proteins. We show a plausible effect of the ER stress on ER structure in a suitable sample of DCM and ICM subjects. Patients with higher values of RRBP1 had worse left ventricular function.

  9. Target genes discovery through copy number alteration analysis in human hepatocellular carcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gu, De-Leung; Chen, Yen-Hsieh; Shih, Jou-Ho; Lin, Chi-Hung; Jou, Yuh-Shan; Chen, Chian-Feng

    2013-12-21

    High-throughput short-read sequencing of exomes and whole cancer genomes in multiple human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cohorts confirmed previously identified frequently mutated somatic genes, such as TP53, CTNNB1 and AXIN1, and identified several novel genes with moderate mutation frequencies, including ARID1A, ARID2, MLL, MLL2, MLL3, MLL4, IRF2, ATM, CDKN2A, FGF19, PIK3CA, RPS6KA3, JAK1, KEAP1, NFE2L2, C16orf62, LEPR, RAC2, and IL6ST. Functional classification of these mutated genes suggested that alterations in pathways participating in chromatin remodeling, Wnt/β-catenin signaling, JAK/STAT signaling, and oxidative stress play critical roles in HCC tumorigenesis. Nevertheless, because there are few druggable genes used in HCC therapy, the identification of new therapeutic targets through integrated genomic approaches remains an important task. Because a large amount of HCC genomic data genotyped by high density single nucleotide polymorphism arrays is deposited in the public domain, copy number alteration (CNA) analyses of these arrays is a cost-effective way to reveal target genes through profiling of recurrent and overlapping amplicons, homozygous deletions and potentially unbalanced chromosomal translocations accumulated during HCC progression. Moreover, integration of CNAs with other high-throughput genomic data, such as aberrantly coding transcriptomes and non-coding gene expression in human HCC tissues and rodent HCC models, provides lines of evidence that can be used to facilitate the identification of novel HCC target genes with the potential of improving the survival of HCC patients.

  10. Climate change and human disturbance can lead to local extinction of Alpine rock ptarmigan: new insight from the western Italian Alps.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simona Imperio

    Full Text Available Alpine grouses are particularly vulnerable to climate change due to their adaptation to extreme conditions and to their relict distributions in the Alps where global warming has been particularly marked in the last half century. Grouses are also currently threatened by habitat modification and human disturbance, and an assessment of the impact of multiple stressors is needed to predict the fate of Alpine populations of these birds in the next decades. We estimated the effect of climate change and human disturbance on a rock ptarmigan population living in the western Italian Alps by combining an empirical population modelling approach and stochastic simulations of the population dynamics under the a1B climate scenario and two different disturbance scenarios, represented by the development of a ski resort, through 2050.The early appearance of snow-free ground in the previous spring had a favorable effect on the rock ptarmigan population, probably through a higher reproductive success. On the contrary, delayed snowfall in autumn had a negative effect possibly due to a mismatch in time to molt to white winter plumage which increases predation risk. The regional climate model PROTHEUS does not foresee any significant change in snowmelt date in the study area, while the start date of continuous snow cover is expected to be significantly delayed. The net effect in the stochastic projections is a more or less pronounced (depending on the model used decline in the studied population. The addition of extra-mortality due to collision with ski-lift wires led the population to fatal consequences in most projections. Should these results be confirmed by larger studies the conservation of Alpine populations would deserve more attention. To counterbalance the effects of climate change, the reduction of all causes of death should be pursued, through a strict preservation of the habitats in the present area of occurrence.

  11. Altered epigenetic regulation of homeobox genes in human oral squamous cell carcinoma cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marcinkiewicz, Katarzyna M.; Gudas, Lorraine J., E-mail: ljgudas@med.cornell.edu

    2014-01-01

    To gain insight into oral squamous cell carcinogenesis, we performed deep sequencing (RNAseq) of non-tumorigenic human OKF6-TERT1R and tumorigenic SCC-9 cells. Numerous homeobox genes are differentially expressed between OKF6-TERT1R and SCC-9 cells. Data from Oncomine, a cancer microarray database, also show that homeobox (HOX) genes are dysregulated in oral SCC patients. The activity of Polycomb repressive complexes (PRC), which causes epigenetic modifications, and retinoic acid (RA) signaling can control HOX gene transcription. HOXB7, HOXC10, HOXC13, and HOXD8 transcripts are higher in SCC-9 than in OKF6-TERT1R cells; using ChIP (chromatin immunoprecipitation) we detected PRC2 protein SUZ12 and the epigenetic H3K27me3 mark on histone H3 at these genes in OKF6-TERT1R, but not in SCC-9 cells. In contrast, IRX1, IRX4, SIX2 and TSHZ3 transcripts are lower in SCC-9 than in OKF6-TERT1R cells. We detected SUZ12 and the H3K27me3 mark at these genes in SCC-9, but not in OKF6-TERT1R cells. SUZ12 depletion increased HOXB7, HOXC10, HOXC13, and HOXD8 transcript levels and decreased the proliferation of OKF6-TERT1R cells. Transcriptional responses to RA are attenuated in SCC-9 versus OKF6-TERT1R cells. SUZ12 and H3K27me3 levels were not altered by RA at these HOX genes in SCC-9 and OKF6-TERT1R cells. We conclude that altered activity of PRC2 is associated with dysregulation of homeobox gene expression in human SCC cells, and that this dysregulation potentially plays a role in the neoplastic transformation of oral keratinocytes. - Highlights: • RNAseq elucidates differences between non-tumorigenic and tumorigenic oral keratinocytes. • Changes in HOX mRNA in SCC-9 vs. OKF6-TERT1R cells are a result of altered epigenetic regulation. • RNAseq shows that retinoic acid (RA) influences gene expression in both OKF6-TERT1R and SCC-9 cells.

  12. Altered epigenetic regulation of homeobox genes in human oral squamous cell carcinoma cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marcinkiewicz, Katarzyna M.; Gudas, Lorraine J.

    2014-01-01

    To gain insight into oral squamous cell carcinogenesis, we performed deep sequencing (RNAseq) of non-tumorigenic human OKF6-TERT1R and tumorigenic SCC-9 cells. Numerous homeobox genes are differentially expressed between OKF6-TERT1R and SCC-9 cells. Data from Oncomine, a cancer microarray database, also show that homeobox (HOX) genes are dysregulated in oral SCC patients. The activity of Polycomb repressive complexes (PRC), which causes epigenetic modifications, and retinoic acid (RA) signaling can control HOX gene transcription. HOXB7, HOXC10, HOXC13, and HOXD8 transcripts are higher in SCC-9 than in OKF6-TERT1R cells; using ChIP (chromatin immunoprecipitation) we detected PRC2 protein SUZ12 and the epigenetic H3K27me3 mark on histone H3 at these genes in OKF6-TERT1R, but not in SCC-9 cells. In contrast, IRX1, IRX4, SIX2 and TSHZ3 transcripts are lower in SCC-9 than in OKF6-TERT1R cells. We detected SUZ12 and the H3K27me3 mark at these genes in SCC-9, but not in OKF6-TERT1R cells. SUZ12 depletion increased HOXB7, HOXC10, HOXC13, and HOXD8 transcript levels and decreased the proliferation of OKF6-TERT1R cells. Transcriptional responses to RA are attenuated in SCC-9 versus OKF6-TERT1R cells. SUZ12 and H3K27me3 levels were not altered by RA at these HOX genes in SCC-9 and OKF6-TERT1R cells. We conclude that altered activity of PRC2 is associated with dysregulation of homeobox gene expression in human SCC cells, and that this dysregulation potentially plays a role in the neoplastic transformation of oral keratinocytes. - Highlights: • RNAseq elucidates differences between non-tumorigenic and tumorigenic oral keratinocytes. • Changes in HOX mRNA in SCC-9 vs. OKF6-TERT1R cells are a result of altered epigenetic regulation. • RNAseq shows that retinoic acid (RA) influences gene expression in both OKF6-TERT1R and SCC-9 cells

  13. Tributyltin alters secretion of interleukin 1 beta from human immune cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Shyretha; Whalen, Margaret

    2015-08-01

    Tributyltin (TBT) has been used as a biocide in industrial applications such as wood preservation, antifouling paint and antifungal agents. Owing to its many uses, it contaminates the environment and has been found in human blood samples. Interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β) is a pro-inflammatory cytokine that promotes cell growth, tissue repair and immune response regulation. Produced predominately by both monocytes and macrophages, IL-1β appears to increase the invasiveness of certain tumors. This study shows that TBT modifies the secretion of IL-1β from increasingly reconstituted preparations of human immune cells. IL-1β secretion was examined after 24-, 48-h or 6-day exposures to TBT in highly enriched human natural killer (NK) cells, monocyte-depleted peripheral blood mononuclear cells (MD-PBMCs), PBMCs, granulocytes and a preparation combining both PBMCs and granulocytes (PBMCs+granulocytes). TBT altered IL-1β secretion from all of the cell preparations. The 200 nM concentration of TBT normally blocked the secretion of IL-1β, whereas lower concentrations (usually 5-50 nM) elevated secretion of IL-1β. Examination of the signaling pathway(s) responsible for the elevated secretion of IL-1β was carried out in MD-PBMCs. Pathways examined were IL-1β processing (Caspase-1), mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) and nuclear factor kappa B (NFκB). Results indicated that MAPK pathways (p44/42 and p38) appear to be the targets of TBT that lead to increased IL-1β secretion from immune cells. These results from human immune cells show IL-1β dysregulation by TBT is occurring ex vivo. Thus, the potential for in vivo effects on pro-inflammatory cytokine levels may possibly be a consequence of TBT exposures. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  14. REST/NRSF Knockdown Alters Survival, Lineage Differentiation and Signaling in Human Embryonic Stem Cells.

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    Kaushali Thakore-Shah

    Full Text Available REST (RE1 silencing transcription factor, also known as NRSF (neuron-restrictive silencer factor, is a well-known transcriptional repressor of neural genes in non-neural tissues and stem cells. Dysregulation of REST activity is thought to play a role in diverse diseases including epilepsy, cancer, Down's syndrome and Huntington's disease. The role of REST/NRSF in control of human embryonic stem cell (hESC fate has never been examined. To evaluate the role of REST in hESCs we developed an inducible REST knockdown system and examined both growth and differentiation over short and long term culture. Interestingly, we have found that altering REST levels in multiple hESC lines does not result in loss of self-renewal but instead leads to increased survival. During differentiation, REST knockdown resulted in increased MAPK/ERK and WNT signaling and increased expression of mesendoderm differentiation markers. Therefore we have uncovered a new role for REST in regulation of growth and early differentiation decisions in human embryonic stem cells.

  15. Transcription factors and stress response gene alterations in human keratinocytes following Solar Simulated Ultra Violet Radiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marais, Thomas L Des; Kluz, Thomas; Xu, Dazhong; Zhang, Xiaoru; Gesumaria, Lisa; Matsui, Mary S; Costa, Max; Sun, Hong

    2017-10-19

    Ultraviolet radiation (UVR) from sunlight is the major effector for skin aging and carcinogenesis. However, genes and pathways altered by solar-simulated UVR (ssUVR), a mixture of UVA and UVB, are not well characterized. Here we report global changes in gene expression as well as associated pathways and upstream transcription factors in human keratinocytes exposed to ssUVR. Human HaCaT keratinocytes were exposed to either a single dose or 5 repetitive doses of ssUVR. Comprehensive analyses of gene expression profiles as well as functional annotation were performed at 24 hours post irradiation. Our results revealed that ssUVR modulated genes with diverse cellular functions changed in a dose-dependent manner. Gene expression in cells exposed to a single dose of ssUVR differed significantly from those that underwent repetitive exposures. While single ssUVR caused a significant inhibition in genes involved in cell cycle progression, especially G2/M checkpoint and mitotic regulation, repetitive ssUVR led to extensive changes in genes related to cell signaling and metabolism. We have also identified a panel of ssUVR target genes that exhibited persistent changes in gene expression even at 1 week after irradiation. These results revealed a complex network of transcriptional regulators and pathways that orchestrate the cellular response to ssUVR.

  16. Pseudomonas aeruginosa lipopolysaccharide induces CF-like alteration of protein secretion by human tracheal gland cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kammouni, W; Figarella, C; Baeza, N; Marchand, S; Merten, M D

    1997-12-18

    Human tracheal gland (HTG) serous cells are now believed to play a major role in the physiopathology of cystic fibrosis. Because of the persistent inflammation and the specific infection by Pseudomonas aeruginosa in the lung, we looked for the action of the lipopolysaccharide (LPS) of this bacteria on human tracheal gland cells in culture by studying the secretion of the secretory leukocyte proteinase inhibitor (SLPI) which is a specific serous secretory marker of these cells. Treatment with Pseudomonas aeruginosa LPS resulted in a significant dose-dependent increase in the basal production of SLPI (+ 250 +/- 25%) whilst the SLPI transcript mRNA levels remained unchanged. This LPS-induced increase in secretion was inhibited by glucocorticoides. Furthermore, LPS treatment of HTG cells induces a loss of responsiveness to carbachol and isoproterenol but not to adenosine triphosphate. These findings indicate that HTG cells treated by Pseudomonas aeruginosa LPS have the same behavior as those previously observed with CF-HTG cells. Exploration by using reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction amplification showed that LPS downregulated cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) mRNA expression in HTG cells indicative of a link between CFTR function and consequent CF-like alteration in protein secretory process.

  17. Statins do not alter the incidence of mesothelioma in asbestos exposed mice or humans.

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    Cleo Robinson

    Full Text Available Mesothelioma is principally caused by asbestos and may be preventable because there is a long latent period between exposure and disease development. The most at-risk are a relatively well-defined population who were exposed as a consequence of their occupations. Although preventative agents investigated so far have not been promising, discovery of such an agent would have a significant benefit world-wide on healthcare costs and personal suffering. Statins are widely used for management of hypercholesterolemia and cardiovascular risk; they can induce apoptosis in mesothelioma cells and epidemiological data has linked their use to a lower incidence of cancer. We hypothesised that statins would inhibit the development of asbestos-induced mesothelioma in mice and humans. An autochthonous murine model of asbestos-induced mesothelioma was used to test this by providing atorvastatin daily in the feed at 100 mg/kg, 200 mg/kg and 400 mg/kg. Continuous administration of atorvastatin did not alter the rate of disease development nor increase the length of time that mice survived. Latency to first symptoms of disease and disease progression were also unaffected. In a parallel study, the relationship between the use of statins and development of mesothelioma was investigated in asbestos-exposed humans. In a cohort of 1,738 asbestos exposed people living or working at a crocidolite mine site in Wittenoom, Western Australia, individuals who reported use of statins did not have a lower incidence of mesothelioma (HR = 1.01; 95% CI = 0.44-2.29, p = 0.99. Some individuals reported use of both statins and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or COX-2 inhibitors, and these people also did not have an altered risk of mesothelioma development (HR = 1.01; 95% CI = 0.61-1.67, p = 0.97. We conclude that statins do not moderate the rate of development of mesothelioma in either a mouse model or a human cohort exposed to asbestos.

  18. Numerical Models of Human Circulatory System under Altered Gravity: Brain Circulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Chang Sung; Kiris, Cetin; Kwak, Dochan; David, Tim

    2003-01-01

    A computational fluid dynamics (CFD) approach is presented to model the blood flow through the human circulatory system under altered gravity conditions. Models required for CFD simulation relevant to major hemodynamic issues are introduced such as non-Newtonian flow models governed by red blood cells, a model for arterial wall motion due to fluid-wall interactions, a vascular bed model for outflow boundary conditions, and a model for auto-regulation mechanism. The three-dimensional unsteady incompressible Navier-Stokes equations coupled with these models are solved iteratively using the pseudocompressibility method and dual time stepping. Moving wall boundary conditions from the first-order fluid-wall interaction model are used to study the influence of arterial wall distensibility on flow patterns and wall shear stresses during the heart pulse. A vascular bed modeling utilizing the analogy with electric circuits is coupled with an auto-regulation algorithm for multiple outflow boundaries. For the treatment of complex geometry, a chimera overset grid technique is adopted to obtain connectivity between arterial branches. For code validation, computed results are compared with experimental data for steady and unsteady non-Newtonian flows. Good agreement is obtained for both cases. In sin-type Gravity Benchmark Problems, gravity source terms are added to the Navier-Stokes equations to study the effect of gravitational variation on the human circulatory system. This computational approach is then applied to localized blood flows through a realistic carotid bifurcation and two Circle of Willis models, one using an idealized geometry and the other model using an anatomical data set. A three- dimensional anatomical Circle of Willis configuration is reconstructed from human-specific magnetic resonance images using an image segmentation method. The blood flow through these Circle of Willis models is simulated to provide means for studying gravitational effects on the brain

  19. Dihydroartemisinin inhibits the human erythroid cell differentiation by altering the cell cycle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Finaurini, Sara; Basilico, Nicoletta; Corbett, Yolanda; D’Alessandro, Sarah; Parapini, Silvia; Olliaro, Piero; Haynes, Richard K.; Taramelli, Donatella

    2012-01-01

    Artemisinin derivatives such as dihydroartemisinin (DHA) induce significant depletion of early embryonic erythroblasts in animal models. We have reported previously that DHA specifically targets pro-erythroblasts and basophilic erythroblasts, when human CD34+ stem cells are differentiated toward the erythroid lineage, indicating that a window of susceptibility to artemisinins may exist also in human developmental erythropoiesis during pregnancy. To better investigate the toxicity of artemisinin derivatives, the structure–activity relationship was evaluated against the K562 leukaemia cell line, used as a model for differentiating early human erythroblasts. All artemisinins derivatives, except deoxyartemisinin, inhibited both spontaneous and induced erythroid differentiation, confirming that the peroxide bridge is responsible for the erythro-toxicity. On the contrary, cell growth was markedly reduced by DHA, artemisone and artesunate but not by artemisinin, 10-deoxoartemisinin or deoxy-artemisinin. The substituent at position C-10 is responsible only for the anti-proliferative effect, since 10-deoxoartemisinin did not reduce cell growth but arrested the differentiation of K562 cells. In particular, the results showed that DHA resulted the most potent and rapidly acting compound of the drug family, causing (i) the decreased expression of GpA surface receptors and the down regulation the γ-globin gene; (ii) the alteration of S phase of cell cycle and (iii) the induction of programmed cell death of early erythroblasts in a dose dependent manner within 24 h. In conclusion, these findings confirm that the active metabolite DHA is responsible for the erythro-toxicity of most of artemisinins used in therapy. Thus, as long as no further clinical data are available, current WHO recommendations of avoiding malaria treatment with artemisinins during the first trimester of pregnancy remain valid.

  20. A method for assessing the physical recovery of Antarctic desert pavements following human-induced disturbances: a case study in the Ross Sea region of Antarctica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neill, Tanya A; Balks, Megan R; López-Martínez, Jerónimo; McWhirter, Judi L

    2012-12-15

    With increasing visitor numbers an understanding of the impacts of human activities in Antarctic terrestrial environments has become important. The objective of this study was to develop a means for assessing recovery of the ground surface desert pavement following physical disturbance. A set of 11 criteria were identified to assess desert pavement recovery. Assessed criteria were: embeddedness of surface clasts; impressions of removed clasts; degree of clast surface weathering; % overturned clasts; salt on underside of clasts; development of salt coatings; armouring per m(2); colour contrast; evidence of subsidence/melt out; accumulation of salt on cut surfaces; and evidence of patterned ground development. Recovery criteria were assigned a severity/extent rating on a scale from zero to four, zero being highly disturbed, and four being undisturbed. A relative % recovery for each criteria was calculated for each site by comparison with a nearby undisturbed control area, and an overall Mean Recovery Index (MRI) was assigned to each pavement surface. To test the method, 54 sites in the Ross Sea region of Antarctica were investigated including areas disturbed by: bulldozer scraping for road-fill, contouring for infrastructure, geotechnical investigations, and experimental treading trial sites. Disturbances had occurred at timescales ranging from one week to 50 years prior to assessment. The extent of desert pavement recovery at the sites investigated in this study was higher than anticipated. Fifty of the 54 sites investigated were in an intermediate, or higher, stage of desert pavement recovery, 30 sites were in an advanced stage of recovery, and four sites were indistinguishable from adjacent control sites (MRI = 100%). It was found that active surfaces, such as the gravel beach deposits at the Greenpeace World Park Base site at Cape Evans, the aeolian sand deposits at Bull Pass, and the alluvial fan deposits of the Loop Moraine field campsite, recovered relatively

  1. Human cytomegalovirus alters localization of MHC class II and dendrite morphology in mature Langerhans cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Andrew W; Hertel, Laura; Louie, Ryan K; Burster, Timo; Lacaille, Vashti; Pashine, Achal; Abate, Davide A; Mocarski, Edward S; Mellins, Elizabeth D

    2006-09-15

    Hemopoietic stem cell-derived mature Langerhans-type dendritic cells (LC) are susceptible to productive infection by human CMV (HCMV). To investigate the impact of infection on this cell type, we examined HLA-DR biosynthesis and trafficking in mature LC cultures exposed to HCMV. We found decreased surface HLA-DR levels in viral Ag-positive as well as in Ag-negative mature LC. Inhibition of HLA-DR was independent of expression of unique short US2-US11 region gene products by HCMV. Indeed, exposure to UV-inactivated virus, but not to conditioned medium from infected cells, was sufficient to reduce HLA-DR on mature LC, implicating particle binding/penetration in this effect. Reduced surface levels reflected an altered distribution of HLA-DR because total cellular HLA-DR was not diminished. Accumulation of HLA-DR was not explained by altered cathepsin S activity. Mature, peptide-loaded HLA-DR molecules were retained within cells, as assessed by the proportion of SDS-stable HLA-DR dimers. A block in egress was implicated, as endocytosis of surface HLA-DR was not increased. Immunofluorescence microscopy corroborated the intracellular retention of HLA-DR and revealed markedly fewer HLA-DR-positive dendritic projections in infected mature LC. Unexpectedly, light microscopic analyses showed a dramatic loss of the dendrites themselves and immunofluorescence revealed that cytoskeletal elements crucial for the formation and maintenance of dendrites are disrupted in viral Ag-positive cells. Consistent with these dendrite effects, HCMV-infected mature LC exhibit markedly reduced chemotaxis in response to lymphoid chemokines. Thus, HCMV impedes MHC class II molecule trafficking, dendritic projections, and migration of mature LC. These changes likely contribute to the reduced activation of CD4+ T cells by HCMV-infected mature LC.

  2. The Molecular Basis for Altered Cation Permeability in Hereditary Stomatocytic Human Red Blood Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna F. Flatt

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Normal human RBCs have a very low basal permeability (leak to cations, which is continuously corrected by the Na,K-ATPase. The leak is temperature-dependent, and this temperature dependence has been evaluated in the presence of inhibitors to exclude the activity of the Na,K-ATPase and NaK2Cl transporter. The severity of the RBC cation leak is altered in various conditions, most notably the hereditary stomatocytosis group of conditions. Pedigrees within this group have been classified into distinct phenotypes according to various factors, including the severity and temperature-dependence of the cation leak. As recent breakthroughs have provided more information regarding the molecular basis of hereditary stomatocytosis, it has become clear that these phenotypes elegantly segregate with distinct genetic backgrounds. The cryohydrocytosis phenotype, including South-east Asian Ovalocytosis, results from mutations in SLC4A1, and the very rare condition, stomatin-deficient cryohydrocytosis, is caused by mutations in SLC2A1. Mutations in RHAG cause the very leaky condition over-hydrated stomatocytosis, and mutations in ABCB6 result in familial pseudohyperkalemia. All of the above are large multi-spanning membrane proteins and the mutations may either modify the structure of these proteins, resulting in formation of a cation pore, or otherwise disrupt the membrane to allow unregulated cation movement across the membrane. More recently mutations have been found in two RBC cation channels, PIEZO1 and KCNN4, which result in dehydrated stomatocytosis. These mutations alter the activation and deactivation kinetics of these channels, leading to increased opening and allowing greater cation fluxes than in wild type.

  3. Interaction matters: A perceived social partner alters the neural processing of human speech.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, Katherine; Redcay, Elizabeth

    2016-04-01

    Mounting evidence suggests that social interaction changes how communicative behaviors (e.g., spoken language, gaze) are processed, but the precise neural bases by which social-interactive context may alter communication remain unknown. Various perspectives suggest that live interactions are more rewarding, more attention-grabbing, or require increased mentalizing-thinking about the thoughts of others. Dissociating between these possibilities is difficult because most extant neuroimaging paradigms examining social interaction have not directly compared live paradigms to conventional "offline" (or recorded) paradigms. We developed a novel fMRI paradigm to assess whether and how an interactive context changes the processing of speech matched in content and vocal characteristics. Participants listened to short vignettes--which contained no reference to people or mental states--believing that some vignettes were prerecorded and that others were presented over a real-time audio-feed by a live social partner. In actuality, all speech was prerecorded. Simply believing that speech was live increased activation in each participant's own mentalizing regions, defined using a functional localizer. Contrasting live to recorded speech did not reveal significant differences in attention or reward regions. Further, higher levels of autistic-like traits were associated with altered neural specialization for live interaction. These results suggest that humans engage in ongoing mentalizing about social partners, even when such mentalizing is not explicitly required, illustrating how social context shapes social cognition. Understanding communication in social context has important implications for typical and atypical social processing, especially for disorders like autism where social difficulties are more acute in live interaction. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Comparative and Experimental Studies on the Genes Altered by Chronic Hypoxia in Human Brain Microendothelial Cells

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    Eugenia Mata-Greenwood

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Background : Hypoxia inducible factor 1 alpha (HIF1A is a master regulator of acute hypoxia; however, with chronic hypoxia, HIF1A levels return to the normoxic levels. Importantly, the genes that are involved in the cell survival and viability under chronic hypoxia are not known. Therefore, we tested the hypothesis that chronic hypoxia leads to the upregulation of a core group of genes with associated changes in the promoter DNA methylation that mediates the cell survival under hypoxia.Results : We examined the effect of chronic hypoxia (3 days; 0.5% oxygen on human brain micro endothelial cells (HBMEC viability and apoptosis. Hypoxia caused a significant reduction in cell viability and an increase in apoptosis. Next, we examined chronic hypoxia associated changes in transcriptome and genome-wide promoter methylation. The data obtained was compared with 16 other microarray studies on chronic hypoxia. Nine genes were altered in response to chronic hypoxia in all 17 studies. Interestingly, HIF1A was not altered with chronic hypoxia in any of the studies. Furthermore, we compared our data to three other studies that identified HIF-responsive genes by various approaches. Only two genes were found to be HIF dependent. We silenced each of these 9 genes using CRISPR/Cas9 system. Downregulation of EGLN3 significantly increased the cell death under chronic hypoxia, whereas downregulation of ERO1L, ENO2, adrenomedullin, and spag4 reduced the cell death under hypoxia.Conclusions : We provide a core group of genes that regulates cellular acclimatization under chronic hypoxic stress, and most of them are HIF independent.

  5. Human disturbance, nursing behaviour, and lactational pup growth in a declining southern elephant seal (Mirounga leonina) population

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Engelhard, GH; Baarspul, ANJ; Broekman, M; Creuwels, JCS; Reijnders, PJH

    We studied lactation behaviour in relation to pup growth in southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina) at Macquarie Island, and compared harems in areas of high and low human presence to determine if there is an effect attributable to human activities, including scientific research. Pup weaning

  6. Human disturbance, nursing behaviour, and lactational pup growth in a declining southern elephant seal (Mirounga leonina) population

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Engelhard, G.H.; Baarspul, A.N.J.; Broekman, M.; Creuwels, J.C.S.; Reijnders, P.J.H.

    2002-01-01

    We studied lactation behaviour in relation to pup growth in southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina) at Macquarie Island, and compared harems in areas of high and low human presence to determine if there is an effect attributable to human activitiesincluding scientific research. Pup weaning mass,

  7. Proteome alteration induced by hTERT transfection of human fibroblast cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazzucchelli, Gabriel D; Gabelica, Valérie; Smargiasso, Nicolas; Fléron, Maximilien; Ashimwe, Wilson; Rosu, Frédéric; De Pauw-Gillet, Marie-Claire; Riou, Jean-François; De Pauw, Edwin

    2008-04-17

    Telomerase confers cellular immortality by elongating telomeres, thereby circumventing the Hayflick limit. Extended-life-span cells have been generated by transfection with the human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) gene. hTERT transfected cell lines may be of outstanding interest to monitor the effect of drugs targeting the telomerase activity. The incidence of hTERT gene transfection at the proteome level is a prerequisite to that purpose. The effect of the transfection has been studied on the proteome of human fibroblast (WI38). Cytosolic and nuclear fractions of WI38 cells, empty vector transfected WI38 (WI38-HPV) and hTERT WI38 cells were submitted to a 2D-DIGE (Two-Dimensional Differential In-Gel Electrophoresis) analysis. Only spots that had a similar abundance in WI38 and WI38-HPV, but were differentially expressed in WI38 hTERT were selected for MS identification. This method directly points to the proteins linked with the hTERT expression. Number of false positive differentially expressed proteins has been excluded by using control WI38-HPV cells. The proteome alteration induced by hTERT WI38 transfection should be taken into account in subsequent use of the cell line for anti-telomerase drugs evaluation. 2D-DIGE experiment shows that 57 spots out of 2246 are significantly differentially expressed in the cytosolic fraction due to hTERT transfection, and 38 were confidently identified. In the nuclear fraction, 44 spots out of 2172 were selected in the differential proteome analysis, and 14 were identified. The results show that, in addition to elongating telomeres, hTERT gene transfection has other physiological roles, among which an enhanced ER capacity and a potent cell protection against apoptosis. We show that the methodology reduces the complexity of the proteome analysis and highlights proteins implicated in other processes than telomere elongation. hTERT induced proteome changes suggest that telomerase expression enhances natural cell repair

  8. Proteome alteration induced by hTERT transfection of human fibroblast cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riou Jean-François

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Telomerase confers cellular immortality by elongating telomeres, thereby circumventing the Hayflick limit. Extended-life-span cells have been generated by transfection with the human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT gene. hTERT transfected cell lines may be of outstanding interest to monitor the effect of drugs targeting the telomerase activity. The incidence of hTERT gene transfection at the proteome level is a prerequisite to that purpose. The effect of the transfection has been studied on the proteome of human fibroblast (WI38. Cytosolic and nuclear fractions of WI38 cells, empty vector transfected WI38 (WI38-HPV and hTERT WI38 cells were submitted to a 2D-DIGE (Two-Dimensional Differential In-Gel Electrophoresis analysis. Only spots that had a similar abundance in WI38 and WI38-HPV, but were differentially expressed in WI38 hTERT were selected for MS identification. This method directly points to the proteins linked with the hTERT expression. Number of false positive differentially expressed proteins has been excluded by using control WI38-HPV cells. The proteome alteration induced by hTERT WI38 transfection should be taken into account in subsequent use of the cell line for anti-telomerase drugs evaluation. Results 2D-DIGE experiment shows that 57 spots out of 2246 are significantly differentially expressed in the cytosolic fraction due to hTERT transfection, and 38 were confidently identified. In the nuclear fraction, 44 spots out of 2172 were selected in the differential proteome analysis, and 14 were identified. The results show that, in addition to elongating telomeres, hTERT gene transfection has other physiological roles, among which an enhanced ER capacity and a potent cell protection against apoptosis. Conclusion We show that the methodology reduces the complexity of the proteome analysis and highlights proteins implicated in other processes than telomere elongation. hTERT induced proteome changes suggest

  9. Tracking Human-Induced Landscape Disturbance at the Nasca Lines UNESCO World Heritage Site in Peru with COSMO-SkyMed InSAR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesca Cigna

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The “Lines and Geoglyphs of Nasca and Palpa” in Peru are among the most well-known UNESCO World Heritage Sites globally, and an exemplar of site where heritage assets cannot be separated from their natural and anthropogenic environment. The site is exposed to interactions with natural processes, as well as human presence. In this work, 3-m resolution synthetic aperture radar (SAR StripMap HIMAGE HH-polarised scenes acquired by the X-band COSMO-SkyMed constellation are exploited to track two events of human-induced landscape disturbance that occurred in December 2014 and January 2018. Pre-, cross-, and post-event interferometric SAR (InSAR pairs characterised by small temporal and normal baselines allow the detection of temporal decorrelation associated with the two events, the extent and time reference of which match with online photographic and video evidence, published literature, web news, and press releases by the Ministry of Culture in Peru. Further elements enhancing the understanding of the 2018 event come from 10-m resolution Sentinel-2B satellite data that reveal the occurrence of apparent changes of surface reflectance due to uncovering of the light grey-yellow clay underneath the darker pebble constituting the fragile surface of the Pampa de Jumana. This scientific study confirms that SAR imagery archives, such as those being built by COSMO-SkyMed for Nasca, prove valuable for the retrospective analysis and digital recording of human-induced landscape disturbance events from space. These archives therefore act as essential sources of geospatial information on the conservation history of heritage sites and assets.

  10. Alterações nucleolares em algumas neuroviroses humanas Nucleolar alterations in some human viral infections of the nervous system

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    Alexandre Alberto de Alencar

    1973-01-01

    Full Text Available Neste trabalho estudamos alguns conceitos básicos sobre o nucléolo. Em seguida à apresentação do material de estudo, constante de casos de neuroviroses humanas, é feita um adescrição pormenorizada das alterações nucleares e nucleolares encontradas nas seguintes entidades mórbidas: polioencefalite subaguda com inclusões de DAWSON, leuco-encefalite subaguda esclerosante de VAN BOAGAERT, panencefalite nodular de PETTEDORING, poliomielite anterior aguda e raiva. As alterações nucleolares encontradas constam de hipertrofia inicial, a que se seguem profundas alterações em sua estrutura interna, sob a forma de vacuolizações e condensações granulares (os chamados nucleolinos de número e tamanhos variados. Alguns destes corpúsculos granulares, fortemente basófilos e que apresentam as mesmas características citoquímicas dos nucléolos, são lançados no carioplasma sob a forma de volumosos corpúsculos basófilos esferoidais. São feitos comentários sobre a natureza do fenômeno, concluindo-se que, tratando-se de uma ocorrência somente encontrada nas viroses, em certas formas de intoxicações e em determinados distúrbios genéticos, o seu aparecimento em um quadro histopatológico encefalítico ou mielítico permite, com segurança atribuir sua etiologia a um vírus. De todos os processos estudados, o que apresentou tais alterações nucleolares com maior exuberância foi a panencefalite nodular de PETTE-DORING.In this paper we studied the classic and modern concepts concerning the structure, composition, origen and function of the nucleole particularly in relation to the neuronal cells. The materal of study consisted of a number of cases of human neuroviroses. A detailed description of the nuclear and nucleolar alterations verfied in the following diseases was made: Dawson's Subacute Polioencephalitis, van Bogaert´s Sclerosing Subacute Leucoencephalitis, Pette Döring's Subacute Panencephalitis, Acute Anterior Poliomyelitis

  11. Photodynamic therapy induces antifibrotic alterations in primary human vocal fold fibroblasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Chi; Wang, Jiajia; Chou, Adriana; Gong, Ting; Devine, Erin E; Jiang, Jack J

    2018-04-18

    Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a promising treatment modality for laryngeal dysplasia, early-stage carcinoma, and papilloma, and was reported to have the ability to preserve laryngeal function and voice quality without clinical fibrotic response. We aimed to investigate the mechanism behind the antifibrotic effects of PDT on primary human vocal fold fibroblasts (VFFs) in vitro. In vitro analysis from one human donor. Cell viability of VFFs in response to varying doses of PDT was investigated by the Cell Counting Kit-8 method. Sublethal-dose PDT (SL-PDT) was used for the following experiments. Expression of genes related to vocal fold extracellular matrix formation was analyzed by real-time polymerase chain reaction, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and Western blotting. Effects of PDT on cell migration, collagen contraction, and transforming growth factor β-1 (TGF-β1)-induced myofibroblast differentiation were also analyzed. PDT affects the viability of VFFs in a dose-dependent manner. SL-PDT significantly changed the expression profile of VFFs with antifibrotic effects. It also inhibited cell migration, reduced collagen contraction, and reversed the fibroblast-myofibroblast differentiation induced by TGF-β1. SL-PDT induces antifibrotic alterations in VFFs. This could explain the low incidence of vocal fold scar associated with PDT. Moreover, PDT may be useful in treating existing vocal fold scars. Further studies should focus on the in vivo effect of PDT on vocal fold wound healing and scar remodeling. NA Laryngoscope, 2018. © 2018 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.

  12. Altered distribution of peripheral blood memory B cells in humans chronically infected with Trypanosoma cruzi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, Esteban R; Olivera, Gabriela C; Quebrada Palacio, Luz P; González, Mariela N; Hernandez-Vasquez, Yolanda; Sirena, Natalia María; Morán, María L; Ledesma Patiño, Oscar S; Postan, Miriam

    2014-01-01

    Numerous abnormalities of the peripheral blood T cell compartment have been reported in human chronic Trypanosoma cruzi infection and related to prolonged antigenic stimulation by persisting parasites. Herein, we measured circulating lymphocytes of various phenotypes based on the differential expression of CD19, CD4, CD27, CD10, IgD, IgM, IgG and CD138 in a total of 48 T. cruzi-infected individuals and 24 healthy controls. Infected individuals had decreased frequencies of CD19+CD27+ cells, which positively correlated with the frequencies of CD4+CD27+ cells. The contraction of CD19+CD27+ cells was comprised of IgG+IgD-, IgM+IgD- and isotype switched IgM-IgD- memory B cells, CD19+CD10+CD27+ B cell precursors and terminally differentiated CD19+CD27+CD138+ plasma cells. Conversely, infected individuals had increased proportions of CD19+IgG+CD27-IgD- memory and CD19+IgM+CD27-IgD+ transitional/naïve B cells. These observations prompted us to assess soluble CD27, a molecule generated by the cleavage of membrane-bound CD27 and used to monitor systemic immune activation. Elevated levels of serum soluble CD27 were observed in infected individuals with Chagas cardiomyopathy, indicating its potentiality as an immunological marker for disease progression in endemic areas. In conclusion, our results demonstrate that chronic T. cruzi infection alters the distribution of various peripheral blood B cell subsets, probably related to the CD4+ T cell deregulation process provoked by the parasite in humans.

  13. Altered distribution of peripheral blood memory B cells in humans chronically infected with Trypanosoma cruzi.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esteban R Fernández

    Full Text Available Numerous abnormalities of the peripheral blood T cell compartment have been reported in human chronic Trypanosoma cruzi infection and related to prolonged antigenic stimulation by persisting parasites. Herein, we measured circulating lymphocytes of various phenotypes based on the differential expression of CD19, CD4, CD27, CD10, IgD, IgM, IgG and CD138 in a total of 48 T. cruzi-infected individuals and 24 healthy controls. Infected individuals had decreased frequencies of CD19+CD27+ cells, which positively correlated with the frequencies of CD4+CD27+ cells. The contraction of CD19+CD27+ cells was comprised of IgG+IgD-, IgM+IgD- and isotype switched IgM-IgD- memory B cells, CD19+CD10+CD27+ B cell precursors and terminally differentiated CD19+CD27+CD138+ plasma cells. Conversely, infected individuals had increased proportions of CD19+IgG+CD27-IgD- memory and CD19+IgM+CD27-IgD+ transitional/naïve B cells. These observations prompted us to assess soluble CD27, a molecule generated by the cleavage of membrane-bound CD27 and used to monitor systemic immune activation. Elevated levels of serum soluble CD27 were observed in infected individuals with Chagas cardiomyopathy, indicating its potentiality as an immunological marker for disease progression in endemic areas. In conclusion, our results demonstrate that chronic T. cruzi infection alters the distribution of various peripheral blood B cell subsets, probably related to the CD4+ T cell deregulation process provoked by the parasite in humans.

  14. Determination of oxidation state of iron in normal and pathologically altered human aortic valves

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Czapla-Masztafiak, J. [Institute of Nuclear Physics PAN, Radzikowskiego 152, 31-342 Kraków (Poland); Lis, G.J.; Gajda, M.; Jasek, E. [Department of Histology, Jagiellonian University Medical College, Kopernika 7, 31-034 Kraków (Poland); Czubek, U. [Department of Coronary Disease, Jagiellonian University Medical College, John Paul II Hospital, Prądnicka 80, 31-202 Kraków (Poland); Bolechała, F. [Department of Forensic Medicine, Jagiellonian University Medical College, Grzegórzecka 16, 31-531 Kraków (Poland); Borca, C. [Swiss Light Source, Paul Scherrer Institute, 5232 Villigen PSI (Switzerland); Kwiatek, W.M. [Institute of Nuclear Physics PAN, Radzikowskiego 152, 31-342 Kraków (Poland)

    2015-12-01

    In order to investigate changes in chemical state of iron in normal and pathologically altered human aortic valves X-ray absorption spectroscopy was applied. Since Fe is suspected to play detrimental role in aortic valve stenosis pathogenesis the oxidation state of this element has been determined. The experimental material consisted of 10 μm sections of valves excised during routine surgery and from autopsies. The experiment was performed at the MicroXAS beamline of the SLS synchrotron facility in Villigen (Switzerland). The Fe K-edge XANES spectra obtained from tissue samples were carefully analyzed and compared with the spectra of reference compounds containing iron in various chemical structures. The analysis of absorption edge position and shape of the spectra revealed that both chemical forms of iron are presented in valve tissue but Fe{sup 3+} is the predominant form. Small shift of the absorption edge toward higher energy in the spectra from stenotic valve samples indicates higher content of the Fe{sup 3+} form in pathological tissue. Such a phenomenon suggests the role of Fenton reaction and reactive oxygen species in the etiology of aortic valve stenosis. The comparison of pre-edge regions of XANES spectra for control and stenotic valve tissue confirmed no differences in local symmetry or spin state of iron in analyzed samples.

  15. Alterations in transcription factor binding in radioresistant human melanoma cells after ionizing radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sahijdak, W.M.; Yang, Chin-Rang; Zuckerman, J.S.; Meyers, M.; Boothman, D.A.

    1994-01-01

    We analyzed alterations in transcription factor binding to specific, known promoter DNA consensus sequences between irradiated and unirradiated radioresistant human melanoma (U1-Mel) cells. The goal of this study was to begin to investigate which transcription factors and DNA-binding sites are responsible for the induction of specific transcripts and proteins after ionizing radiation. Transcription factor binding was observed using DNA band-shift assays and oligonucleotide competition analyses. Confluence-arrested U1-Mel cells were irradiated (4.5 Gy) and harvested at 4 h. Double-stranded oligonucleotides containing known DNA-binding consensus sites for specific transcription factors were used. Increased DNA binding activity after ionizing radiation was noted with oligonucleotides containing the CREB, NF-kB and Sp1 consensus sites. No changes in protein binding to AP-1, AP-2, AP-3, or CTF/NF1, GRE or Oct-1 consensus sequences were noted. X-ray activation of select transcription factors, which bind certain consensus sites in promoters, may cause specific induction or repression of gene transcription. 22 refs., 2 figs

  16. Alterations of the cytoskeleton in human cells in space proved by life-cell imaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corydon, Thomas J.; Kopp, Sascha; Wehland, Markus; Braun, Markus; Schütte, Andreas; Mayer, Tobias; Hülsing, Thomas; Oltmann, Hergen; Schmitz, Burkhard; Hemmersbach, Ruth; Grimm, Daniela

    2016-01-01

    Microgravity induces changes in the cytoskeleton. This might have an impact on cells and organs of humans in space. Unfortunately, studies of cytoskeletal changes in microgravity reported so far are obligatorily based on the analysis of fixed cells exposed to microgravity during a parabolic flight campaign (PFC). This study focuses on the development of a compact fluorescence microscope (FLUMIAS) for fast live-cell imaging under real microgravity. It demonstrates the application of the instrument for on-board analysis of cytoskeletal changes in FTC-133 cancer cells expressing the Lifeact-GFP marker protein for the visualization of F-actin during the 24th DLR PFC and TEXUS 52 rocket mission. Although vibration is an inevitable part of parabolic flight maneuvers, we successfully for the first time report life-cell cytoskeleton imaging during microgravity, and gene expression analysis after the 31st parabola showing a clear up-regulation of cytoskeletal genes. Notably, during the rocket flight the FLUMIAS microscope reveals significant alterations of the cytoskeleton related to microgravity. Our findings clearly demonstrate the applicability of the FLUMIAS microscope for life-cell imaging during microgravity, rendering it an important technological advance in live-cell imaging when dissecting protein localization. PMID:26818711

  17. Does exposure to very high levels of natural radiation induce hematological alterations in humans?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ghiassi-Nejad, M.

    2003-01-01

    Full text: It has long been known that total body exposure to moderate doses decrease the number of circulating erythrocytes, platelets, granulocytes, and lymphocytes. However, data on hematopoietic effects of exposure to very low doses of ionizing radiation in humans are scarce. Recently it has been reported that hematological parameters have significant positive associations with the radiation dose received by residents lived near a nuclear power plant. Ramsar, a city in northern Iran, has some inhabited areas with the highest levels of natural radiation studied so far. A population of about 2000 is exposed to average annual radiation levels of 10.2 mGy y -1 and the highest recorded external gamma dose rates are about 130 mGy y -1 . In this study, hematological parameters such as counts of leukocytes, lymphocytes, monocytes, granulocytes, red blood cells, hemoglobin, hematocrit, MCV, MCH, MCHC, RDW, PLT, and MPV were measured in the inhabitants. The results of this study indicated that there was no any statistically significant alteration in hematological parameters of the inhabitants of very high background radiation areas of Ramsar compared to those of a neighboring control area

  18. Human influence on the abundance and connectivity of high-risk fuels in mixed forests of northern Wisconsin, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brian R. Sturtevant; Patrick A. Zoller; Eric J. Gustafson; David T. Cleland

    2004-01-01

    Though fire is considered a "natural" disturbance, humans heavily influence modern wildfire regimes. Humans influence fires both directly, by igniting and suppressing fires, and indirectly, by either altering vegetation, climate, or both. We used the LANDIS disturbance and succession model to compare the relative importance of a direct human influence (...

  19. Human influence on the abundance and connectivity of high-risk fuels in mixed forests of northern Wisconsin, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brian R. Sturtevant; Patrick A. Zollner; Eric J. Gustafson; David T. Cleland

    2004-01-01

    Though fire is considered a "natural" disturbance, humans heavily influence modern wildfire regimes. Humans influence fires both directly, by igniting and suppressing fires, and indirectly, by either altering vegetation, climate, or both. We used the LANDIS disturbance and succession model to compare the relative importance of a direct human influence...

  20. Disturbances of ligand potency and enhanced degradation of the human glycine receptor at affected positions G160 and T162 originally identified in patients suffering from hyperekplexia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sinem eAtak

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Ligand-binding of Cys-loop receptors is determined by N-terminal extracellular loop structures from the plus as well as from the minus side of two adjacent subunits in the pentameric receptor complex. An aromatic residue in loop B of the glycine receptor (GlyR undergoes direct interaction with the incoming ligand via cation-π interactions. Recently we showed that mutated residues in loop B identified from human patients suffering from hyperekplexia disturb ligand-binding. Here, we exchanged the affected human residues by amino acids found in related members of the Cys-loop receptor family to determine the effects of side chain volume for ion channel properties. GlyR variants were characterized in vitro following transfection into cell lines in order to analyze protein expression, trafficking, degradation and ion channel function. GlyR α1 G160 mutations significantly decrease glycine potency arguing for a positional effect on neighboring aromatic residues and consequently glycine-binding within the ligand-binding pocket. Disturbed glycinergic inhibition due to T162 α1 mutations is an additive effect of affected biogenesis and structural changes within the ligand-binding site. Protein trafficking from the ER towards ER-Golgi intermediate compartment, the secretory Golgi pathways and finally the cell surface is largely diminished, but still sufficient to deliver ion channels that are functional at least at high glycine concentrations. The majority of T162 mutant protein accumulates in the ER and is conducted to ER-associated proteasomal degradation. Hence, G160 is an important determinant during glycine binding. In contrast, T162 assigns primarily receptor biogenesis whereas exchanges in functionality are secondary effects thereof.

  1. Anatomy of Human Interventions on the Alteration of Drought Risk over the Conterminous US

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, X.; Wada, Y.; Wanders, N.; Sheffield, J.

    2017-12-01

    Drought attribution focusing on anthropogenic climate change has received wide attentions. However, human interventions (HIs), such as irrigation, reservoir operation, and water use, are less well known. In this study, using the large-scale water resources model PCR-GLOBWB, we perform a suite of high-resolution ( 10 km) simulations over the conterminous US (CONUS) in order to disentangle the fingerprints of individual HI elements on changes of hydrological drought. The results show significant trend differences between scenarios with and without HIs in certain regions of the CONUS. HIs cause increased trends in drought severity for the High Plains, California and Mid-Atlantic region, whereas decreased trend emerges in the California Central Valley, lower Mississippi basin and Pacific Northwest. The mechanism of altered drought severity can be broken down into three individual parts, with irrigation increasing the trend in the High Plains and Central Valley, reservoir operation decreasing the trend in Western US and water use amplifying the trend in the urban areas. Besides the trend analysis, we show the relative contribution of water abstraction and return flows to explain how each HI contributes to enhancing or mitigating drought. Results demonstrate that return flows from agricultural irrigation increase recharge and therefore can alleviate hydrological drought (e.g., by 60-80% in Mississippi embayment). Further examination of the water sources indicates that in these drought alleviation hotspots, non-fossil groundwater dominates the total water abstraction. However, for the hotspots of drought intensification (e.g., southern High Plains), extensive irrigational pumping causes severe depletion of fossil groundwater, which reduces the interaction between baseflow and channel flow, and therefore reduces the total streamflow. Return level analysis is further applied to quantify how different types of HIs could alter the probability of occurrence of recent major

  2. Great gray owls (Strix nebulosa) in Yosemite National Park: on the importance of food, forest structure, and human disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Riper, Charles; Fontaine, Joseph J.; van Wagtendonk, Jan W.

    2013-01-01

    We studied great gray owls (Strix nebulosa Forster) in Yosemite National Park, California, measuring variables that could potentially influence patterns of occurrence and conservation of this stateendangered species. We found that owl presence was closely tied to habitat (red fir (Abies magnified A. Murray) and the abundance of meadows), prey, and snags across the landscape. We also found that indicators of human recreational activities negatively influenced owl distribution and habitat use. Great gray owls appear to prefer mid-elevation red fir forest with meadows that are drier and more productive in terms of small mammal populations. That these areas also have the highest human activity presents a paradox, both for individual owls and for the future conservation and management of this California endangered species. The extent to which human recreation in natural areas affects animal behavior, species distribution, and productivity is a growing issue in natural area management. We present information that will allow land managers to better understand how existing natural resources, coupled with human recreation, influence the distribution and habitat use of the great gray owl.

  3. Acute stress alters auditory selective attention in humans independent of HPA: a study of evoked potentials.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ludger Elling

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Acute stress is a stereotypical, but multimodal response to a present or imminent challenge overcharging an organism. Among the different branches of this multimodal response, the consequences of glucocorticoid secretion have been extensively investigated, mostly in connection with long-term memory (LTM. However, stress responses comprise other endocrine signaling and altered neuronal activity wholly independent of pituitary regulation. To date, knowledge of the impact of such "paracorticoidal" stress responses on higher cognitive functions is scarce. We investigated the impact of an ecological stressor on the ability to direct selective attention using event-related potentials in humans. Based on research in rodents, we assumed that a stress-induced imbalance of catecholaminergic transmission would impair this ability. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The stressor consisted of a single cold pressor test. Auditory negative difference (Nd and mismatch negativity (MMN were recorded in a tonal dichotic listening task. A time series of such tasks confirmed an increased distractibility occurring 4-7 minutes after onset of the stressor as reflected by an attenuated Nd. Salivary cortisol began to rise 8-11 minutes after onset when no further modulations in the event-related potentials (ERP occurred, thus precluding a causal relationship. This effect may be attributed to a stress-induced activation of mesofrontal dopaminergic projections. It may also be attributed to an activation of noradrenergic projections. Known characteristics of the modulation of ERP by different stress-related ligands were used for further disambiguation of causality. The conjuncture of an attenuated Nd and an increased MMN might be interpreted as indicating a dopaminergic influence. The selective effect on the late portion of the Nd provides another tentative clue for this. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Prior studies have deliberately tracked the adrenocortical influence

  4. Alteration of human umbilical vein endothelial cell gene expression in different biomechanical environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoajei, Shahrokh; Tafazzoli-Shahdpour, Mohammad; Shokrgozar, Mohammad Ali; Haghighipour, Nooshin

    2014-05-01

    Biomechanical environments affect the function of cells. In this study we analysed the effects of five mechanical stimuli on the gene expression of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) in mRNA level using real-time PCR. The following loading regimes were applied on HUVECs for 48 h: intermittent (0-5 dyn/cm(2) , 1 Hz) and uniform (5 dyn/cm(2) ) shear stresses concomitant by 10% intermittent equiaxial stretch (1 Hz), uniform shear stress alone (5 dyn/cm(2) ), and intermittent uniaxial and equiaxial stretches (10%, 1 Hz). A new bioreactor was made to apply uniform/cyclic shear and tensile loadings. Three endothelial suggestive specific genes (vascular endothelial growth factor receptor-2 (VEGFR-2, also known as FLK-1), von Willebrand Factor (vWF) and vascular endothelial-cadherin (VE-cadherin)), and two smooth muscle genes (α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) and smooth muscle myosin heavy chain (SMMHC)) were chosen for assessment of alteration in gene expression of endothelial cells and transdifferentiation toward smooth cells following load applications. Shear stress alone enhanced the endothelial gene expression significantly, while stretching alone was identified as a transdifferentiating factor. Cyclic equiaxial stretch contributed less to elevation of smooth muscle genes compared to uniaxial stretch. Cyclic shear stress in comparison to uniform shear stress concurrent with cyclic stretch was more influential on promotion of endothelial genes expression. Influence of different mechanical stimuli on gene expression may open a wider horizon to regulate functions of cell for tissue engineering purposes. © 2013 International Federation for Cell Biology.

  5. Effectiveness of Sunscreen at Preventing Solar UV-Induced Alterations of Human Stratum Corneum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez, O.; Dauskardt, R.; Biniek, K.; Novoa, F.

    2012-12-01

    The outermost layer of the epidermis, the stratum corneum, protects the body from harmful environmental conditions by serving as a selective barrier. Solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation is one of the most common conditions the body encounters and is responsible for many negative skin responses, including compromised barrier function. UV exposure has dramatic effects on stratum corneum cell cohesion and mechanical integrity that are related to its effects on the stratum corneum's intercellular lipids. Hypothesis Sunscreen contains chemicals that absorb UV radiation to prevent the radiation from penetrating the skin. Thus, it is expected that the application of sunscreen on human stratum corneum will reduce UV-induced alterations of human stratum corneum. Procedures/Equipment Human tissue was processed in order to isolate the stratum corneum, the top layer of the epidermis. Double cantilever beam (DCB) testing was used to study the effect of UV radiation on human stratum corneum. Two different types of DCB samples were created: control DCB samples with the application of carrier and UV light to the stratum corneum and DCB samples with the application of sunscreen and UV light to the stratum corneum. For the control sample, one side of the stratum corneum was glued to a polycarbonate beam and carrier was applied. Then, the sample was placed 10 cm away from the UV lamp inside of the environmental chamber and were exposed to UV dosages of about 800 J/cm2. Once this step was complete, a second polycarbonate beam was glued to the other side of the stratum corneum. The steps were similar for the DCB sample that had sunscreen applied and that was exposed to UV light. After gluing one side of the stratum corneum to a polycarbonate beam, Octinoxate sunscreen was applied. The next steps were similar to those of the control sample. All DCB samples were then let out to dry for two hours in a dry box in order for the moisture from the lab to be extracted. Each DCB sample was tested

  6. A genetic code alteration is a phenotype diversity generator in the human pathogen Candida albicans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabel Miranda

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The discovery of genetic code alterations and expansions in both prokaryotes and eukaryotes abolished the hypothesis of a frozen and universal genetic code and exposed unanticipated flexibility in codon and amino acid assignments. It is now clear that codon identity alterations involve sense and non-sense codons and can occur in organisms with complex genomes and proteomes. However, the biological functions, the molecular mechanisms of evolution and the diversity of genetic code alterations remain largely unknown. In various species of the genus Candida, the leucine CUG codon is decoded as serine by a unique serine tRNA that contains a leucine 5'-CAG-3'anticodon (tRNA(CAG(Ser. We are using this codon identity redefinition as a model system to elucidate the evolution of genetic code alterations. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We have reconstructed the early stages of the Candida genetic code alteration by engineering tRNAs that partially reverted the identity of serine CUG codons back to their standard leucine meaning. Such genetic code manipulation had profound cellular consequences as it exposed important morphological variation, altered gene expression, re-arranged the karyotype, increased cell-cell adhesion and secretion of hydrolytic enzymes. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Our study provides the first experimental evidence for an important role of genetic code alterations as generators of phenotypic diversity of high selective potential and supports the hypothesis that they speed up evolution of new phenotypes.

  7. Changing Forest Disturbance Regimes and Risk Perceptions in Homer, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Courtney G. F1int

    2007-01-01

    Forest disturbances caused by insects can lead to other disturbances, risks, and changes across landscapes. Evaluating the human dimensions of such disturbances furthers understanding of integrated changes in natural and social systems. This article examines the effects of changing forest disturbance regimes on local risk perceptions and attitudes in Homer, Alaska....

  8. Release of tensile strain on engineered human tendon tissue disturbs cell adhesions, changes matrix architecture, and induces an inflammatory phenotype

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bayer, Monika L; Schjerling, Peter; Herchenhan, Andreas

    2014-01-01

    Mechanical loading of tendon cells results in an upregulation of mechanotransduction signaling pathways, cell-matrix adhesion and collagen synthesis, but whether unloading removes these responses is unclear. We investigated the response to tension release, with regard to matrix proteins, pro......-inflammatory mediators and tendon phenotypic specific molecules, in an in vitro model where tendon-like tissue was engineered from human tendon cells. Tissue sampling was performed 1, 2, 4 and 6 days after surgical de-tensioning of the tendon construct. When tensile stimulus was removed, integrin type collagen receptors...... were upregulated. Stimulation with the cytokine TGF-β1 had distinct effects on some tendon-related genes in both tensioned and de-tensioned tissue. These findings indicate an important role of mechanical loading for cellular and matrix responses in tendon, including that loss of tension leads...

  9. Disturbed mitochondrial function restricts glutamate uptake in the human Müller glia cell line, MIO-M1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vohra, Rupali; Gurubaran, Iswariyaraja Sridevi; Henriksen, Ulrik

    2017-01-01

    Using the human Müller cell line, MIO-M1, the aim was to study the impact of mitochondrial inhibition in Müller glia through antimycin A treatment. MIO-M1 cell survival, levels of released lactate, mitochondrial function, and glutamate uptake were studied in response to mitochondrial inhibition...... and glucose restriction. Lactate release decreased in response to glucose restriction. Combined glucose restriction and blocked mitochondrial activity decreased survival and caused collapse of the respiratory chain measured by oxygen consumption rate and extracellular acidification rate. Mitochondrial...... inhibition caused impaired glutamate uptake and decreased mRNA expression of the glutamate transporter, EAAT1. Over all, we show important roles of mitochondrial activity in MIO-M1 cell function and survival....

  10. Pleistocene climatic oscillations rather than recent human disturbance influence genetic diversity in one of the world's highest treeline species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Yanling; Lachmuth, Susanne; Gallegos, Silvia C; Kessler, Michael; Ramsay, Paul M; Renison, Daniel; Suarez, Ricardo; Hensen, Isabell

    2015-10-01

    Biological responses to climatic change usually leave imprints on the genetic diversity and structure of plants. Information on the current genetic diversity and structure of dominant tree species has facilitated our general understanding of phylogeographical patterns. Using amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLPs), we compared genetic diversity and structure of 384 adults of P. tarapacana with those of 384 seedlings across 32 forest sites spanning a latitudinal gradient of 600 km occurring between 4100 m and 5000 m a.s.l. in Polylepis tarapacana (Rosaceae), one of the world's highest treeline species endemic to the central Andes. Moderate to high levels of genetic diversity and low genetic differentiation were detected in both adults and seedlings, with levels of genetic diversity and differentiation being almost identical. Four slightly genetically divergent clusters were identified that accorded to differing geographical regions. Genetic diversity decreased from south to north and with increasing precipitation for adults and seedlings, but there was no relationship to elevation. Our study shows that, unlike the case for other Andean treeline species, recent human activities have not affected the genetic structure of P. tarapacana, possibly because its inhospitable habitat is unsuitable for agriculture. The current genetic pattern of P. tarapacana points to a historically more widespread distribution at lower altitudes, which allowed considerable gene flow possibly during the glacial periods of the Pleistocene epoch, and also suggests that the northern Argentinean Andes may have served as a refugium for historical populations. © 2015 Botanical Society of America.

  11. Disturbance of gene expression in primary human hepatocytes by hepatotoxic pyrrolizidine alkaloids: A whole genome transcriptome analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luckert, Claudia; Hessel, Stefanie; Lenze, Dido; Lampen, Alfonso

    2015-10-01

    1,2-unsaturated pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PA) are plant metabolites predominantly occurring in the plant families Asteraceae and Boraginaceae. Acute and chronic PA poisoning causes severe hepatotoxicity. So far, the molecular mechanisms of PA toxicity are not well understood. To analyze its mode of action, primary human hepatocytes were exposed to a non-cytotoxic dose of 100 μM of four structurally different PA: echimidine, heliotrine, senecionine, senkirkine. Changes in mRNA expression were analyzed by a whole genome microarray. Employing cut-off values with a |fold change| of 2 and a q-value of 0.01, data analysis revealed numerous changes in gene expression. In total, 4556, 1806, 3406 and 8623 genes were regulated by echimidine, heliotrine, senecione and senkirkine, respectively. 1304 genes were identified as commonly regulated. PA affected pathways related to cell cycle regulation, cell death and cancer development. The transcription factors TP53, MYC, NFκB and NUPR1 were predicted to be activated upon PA treatment. Furthermore, gene expression data showed a considerable interference with lipid metabolism and bile acid flow. The associated transcription factors FXR, LXR, SREBF1/2, and PPARα/γ/δ were predicted to be inhibited. In conclusion, though structurally different, all four PA significantly regulated a great number of genes in common. This proposes similar molecular mechanisms, although the extent seems to differ between the analyzed PA as reflected by the potential hepatotoxicity and individual PA structure. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Isotope hydrology and baseflow geochemistry in natural and human-altered watersheds in the Inland Pacific Northwest, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricardo Sanchez-Murillo; Erin S. Brooks; William J. Elliot; Jan Boll

    2015-01-01

    This study presents a stable isotope hydrology and geochemical analysis in the inland Pacific Northwest (PNW) of the USA. Isotope ratios were used to estimate mean transit times (MTTs) in natural and human-altered watersheds using the FLOWPC program. Isotope ratios in precipitation resulted in a regional meteoric water line of ä2H = 7.42·ä18O + 0.88 (n = 316; r2 = 0.97...

  13. Fine structural alterations of the blood vessels in the delayed radionecrosis of the human brain and its pathogenesis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Matsumura, H [Nagasaki Univ. (Japan). School of Medicine

    1981-05-01

    The blood vessels in the delayed radionecrosis of the human brain were studied under light and electron microscopes. Microscopically, the blood vessels demonstrated characteristic findings such as fibrinoid necrosis, hyalinized thickened vessels, perivascular fibrosis and thrombosed vessels. Electron microscopy revealed the formation of fenestrae, separation of endothelial cells, increased pinocytotic vesicles as well as the initial thrombus formation. Our results strongly verified that vascular alterations are primary in the pathogenesis of radionecrosis whereas the parenchymal changes are secondary.

  14. Interaction of historical and nonhistorical disturbances maintains native plant communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, K W; Svejcar, T J; Bates, J D

    2009-09-01

    Historical disturbance regimes are often considered a critical element in maintaining native plant communities. However, the response of plant communities to disturbance may be fundamentally altered as a consequence of invasive plants, climate change, or prior disturbances. The appropriateness of historical disturbance patterns under modern conditions and the interactions among disturbances are issues that ecologists must address to protect and restore native plant communities. We evaluated the response of Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis (Beetle & A. Young) S.L. Welsh plant communities to their historical disturbance regime compared to other disturbance regimes. The historical disturbance regime of these plant communities was periodic fires with minimal grazing by large herbivores. We also investigated the influence of prior disturbance (grazing) on the response of these communities to subsequent disturbance (burning). Treatments were: (1) ungrazed (livestock grazing excluded since 1936) and unburned, (2) grazed and unburned, (3) ungrazed and burned (burned in 1993), and (4) grazed and burned. The ungrazed-burned treatment emulated the historical disturbance regime. Vegetation cover, density, and biomass production were measured the 12th, 13th, and 14th year post-burning. Prior to burning the presence of Bromus tectorum L., an exotic annual grass, was minimal (resilience to more severe disturbances. Modern deviations from historical conditions can alter ecosystem response to disturbances, thus restoring the historical disturbance regime may not be an appropriate strategy for all ecosystems.

  15. Proteome analysis demonstrates profound alterations in human dendritic cell nature by TX527, an analogue of vitamin D

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ferreira, G. B.; van Etten, E.; Lage, K.

    2009-01-01

    Structural analogues of vitamin D have been put forward as therapeutic agents able to exploit the immunomodulatory effects of vitamin D, without its undesired calcemic side effects. We have demonstrated that TX527 affects dendritic cell (DC) maturation in vitro, resulting in the generation...... of a tolerogenic cell. In the present study, we aimed to explore the global protein changes induced by the analogue in immature DC (iDC) and mature human DC and to correlate them with alterations in DC morphology and function. Human CD14(+) monocytes were differentiated toward iDC or mature DCs, in the presence...

  16. Urbanization and baseline prevalence of genital infections including Candida, Trichomonas, and human papillomavirus and of a disturbed vaginal ecology as established in the Dutch Cervical Screening Program

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boon, ME; Claasen, HHV; Kok, LP

    OBJECTIVE: An overgrowth of coccoid bacilli in the absence of lactobacilli (bacterial vaginosis) is considered a sign of a "disturbed" vaginal ecologic system. The aim of this study was to establish the baseline prevalence of genital infections and of a disturbed vaginal ecologic system and their

  17. Secretion of Interferon gamma (IFNγ) from Human Immune Cells is Altered by Exposure to Tributyltin (TBT) and Dibutyltin (DBT)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, Shanieek; Reid, Jacqueline; Whalen, Margaret

    2013-01-01

    Tributyltin (TBT) and dibutyltin (DBT) are widespread environmental contaminants found in food, beverages, and human blood samples. Both of these butyltins (BTs) interfere with the ability of human natural killer (NK) cells to lyse target cells and also alter secretion of the pro-inflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα) from human immune cells in vitro. The capacity of BTs to interfere with secretion of other pro-inflammatory cytokines has not been examined. Interferon gamma (IFNγ) is a modulator of adaptive and innate immune responses, playing an important role in overall immune competence. This study shows that both TBT and DBT alter secretion of IFNγ from human immune cells. Peripheral blood cell preparations that were increasingly reconstituted were used to determine if exposures to either TBT or DBT affected IFNγ secretion and how the makeup of the cell preparation influenced that effect. IFNγ secretion was examined after 24 h, 48 h and 6 day exposures to TBT (200- 2.5 nM) and DBT (5- 0.05 μM) in highly enriched human NK cells, a monocyte-depleted preparation of PBMCs, and monocyte-containing PBMCs. Both BTs altered IFNγ secretion from NK cells at most of the conditions tested (either increasing or decreasing secretion). However, there was significant variability among donors as to the concentrations and time points that showed changes as well as the baseline secretion of IFNγ. The majority of donors showed an increase in IFNγ secretion in response to at least one concentration of TBT or DBT at a minimum of one length of exposure. PMID:24357260

  18. Mistimed food intake and sleep alters 24-hour time-of-day patterns of the human plasma proteome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Depner, Christopher M; Melanson, Edward L; McHill, Andrew W; Wright, Kenneth P

    2018-06-05

    Proteomics holds great promise for understanding human physiology, developing health biomarkers, and precision medicine. However, how much the plasma proteome varies with time of day and is regulated by the master circadian suprachiasmatic nucleus brain clock, assessed here by the melatonin rhythm, is largely unknown. Here, we assessed 24-h time-of-day patterns of human plasma proteins in six healthy men during daytime food intake and nighttime sleep in phase with the endogenous circadian clock (i.e., circadian alignment) versus daytime sleep and nighttime food intake out of phase with the endogenous circadian clock (i.e., circadian misalignment induced by simulated nightshift work). We identified 24-h time-of-day patterns in 573 of 1,129 proteins analyzed, with 30 proteins showing strong regulation by the circadian cycle. Relative to circadian alignment, the average abundance and/or 24-h time-of-day patterns of 127 proteins were altered during circadian misalignment. Altered proteins were associated with biological pathways involved in immune function, metabolism, and cancer. Of the 30 circadian-regulated proteins, the majority peaked between 1400 hours and 2100 hours, and these 30 proteins were associated with basic pathways involved in extracellular matrix organization, tyrosine kinase signaling, and signaling by receptor tyrosine-protein kinase erbB-2. Furthermore, circadian misalignment altered multiple proteins known to regulate glucose homeostasis and/or energy metabolism, with implications for altered metabolic physiology. Our findings demonstrate the circadian clock, the behavioral wake-sleep/food intake-fasting cycle, and interactions between these processes regulate 24-h time-of-day patterns of human plasma proteins and help identify mechanisms of circadian misalignment that may contribute to metabolic dysregulation.

  19. Modeling the Response of Human Altered Natural Barrier Island Dynamics Along Assateague Island National Seashore to Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carroll, A.; McNamara, D.; Schupp, C.

    2009-12-01

    Assateague Island National Seashore comprises a long barrier island located off the coasts of Maryland and Virginia. Geological evidence suggests that over recent centuries Assateague Island has steadily transgressed up the continental shelf in response to rising sea level. More recently, the natural barrier island dynamics governing Assateague’s evolution have been altered by human activity in three ways: the construction of a jetty and the subsequent interruption of alongshore sediment transport on the north end of Assateague and both the ongoing and abandoned maintenance of a continuous dune system along portions of Assateague with the concomitant modification to overwash dynamics. It is unclear how these varied human alterations to the natural barrier island dynamics will influence the response of Assateague to climate change induced shifts in forcing such as increased rates of sea level rise and changing storm patterns. We use LIDAR detected morphological data of Assateague Island as initial conditions in an alongshore extended model for barrier island dynamics including beach erosion, island overwash and inlet cutting during storms, and beach accretion, tidal delta growth and dune and vegetation growth between storms to explore the response of the various human altered segments of Assateague Island to forcing changes. Traditional models exploring barrier island evolution contain only cross-shore dynamics therefore lacking important alongshore-spatial dynamics in aeolian and surf zone sediment transport. Results show that including alongshore dynamics alter the steady state of Assateague relative to simulations that only include cross-shore dynamics. Results will also be presented exploring the potential for regime shifts in steady state behavior under various scenarios for the rate of sea level rise and storm climate and varying management strategies.

  20. Identification of reference genes in human myelomonocytic cells for gene expression studies in altered gravity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thiel, Cora S; Hauschild, Swantje; Tauber, Svantje; Paulsen, Katrin; Raig, Christiane; Raem, Arnold; Biskup, Josefine; Gutewort, Annett; Hürlimann, Eva; Unverdorben, Felix; Buttron, Isabell; Lauber, Beatrice; Philpot, Claudia; Lier, Hartwin; Engelmann, Frank; Layer, Liliana E; Ullrich, Oliver

    2015-01-01

    Gene expression studies are indispensable for investigation and elucidation of molecular mechanisms. For the process of normalization, reference genes ("housekeeping genes") are essential to verify gene expression analysis. Thus, it is assumed that these reference genes demonstrate similar expression levels over all experimental conditions. However, common recommendations about reference genes were established during 1 g conditions and therefore their applicability in studies with altered gravity has not been demonstrated yet. The microarray technology is frequently used to generate expression profiles under defined conditions and to determine the relative difference in expression levels between two or more different states. In our study, we searched for potential reference genes with stable expression during different gravitational conditions (microgravity, normogravity, and hypergravity) which are additionally not altered in different hardware systems. We were able to identify eight genes (ALB, B4GALT6, GAPDH, HMBS, YWHAZ, ABCA5, ABCA9, and ABCC1) which demonstrated no altered gene expression levels in all tested conditions and therefore represent good candidates for the standardization of gene expression studies in altered gravity.

  1. Role of Mitochondrial DNA Copy Number Alteration in Human Renal Cell Carcinoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen-Sung Lin

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the role of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA copy number alteration in human renal cell carcinoma (RCC. The mtDNA copy numbers of paired cancer and non-cancer parts from five resected RCC kidneys after radical nephrectomy were determined by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (Q-PCR. An RCC cell line, 786-O, was infected by lentiviral particles to knock down mitochondrial transcriptional factor A (TFAM. Null target (NT and TFAM-knockdown (TFAM-KD represented the control and knockdown 786-O clones, respectively. Protein or mRNA expression levels of TFAM; mtDNA-encoded NADH dehydrogenase subunit 1 (ND1, ND6 and cytochrome c oxidase subunit 2 (COX-2; nuclear DNA (nDNA-encoded succinate dehydrogenase subunit A (SDHA; v-akt murine thymoma viral oncogene homolog 1 gene (AKT-encoded AKT and v-myc myelocytomatosis viral oncogene homolog gene (c-MYC-encoded MYC; glycolytic enzymes including hexokinase II (HK-II, glucose 6-phosphate isomerase (GPI, phosphofructokinase (PFK, and lactate dehydrogenase subunit A (LDHA; and hypoxia-inducible factors the HIF-1α and HIF-2α, pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase 1 (PDK1, and pyruvate dehydrogenase E1 component α subunit (PDHA1 were analyzed by Western blot or Q-PCR. Bioenergetic parameters of cellular metabolism, basal mitochondrial oxygen consumption rate (mOCRB and basal extracellular acidification rate (ECARB, were measured by a Seahorse XFe-24 analyzer. Cell invasiveness was evaluated by a trans-well migration assay and vimentin expression. Doxorubicin was used as a chemotherapeutic agent. The results showed a decrease of mtDNA copy numbers in resected RCC tissues (p = 0.043. The TFAM-KD clone expressed lower mtDNA copy number (p = 0.034, lower mRNA levels of TFAM (p = 0.008, ND1 (p = 0.007, and ND6 (p = 0.017, and lower protein levels of TFAM and COX-2 than did the NT clone. By contrast, the protein levels of HIF-2α, HK-II, PFK, LDHA, AKT, MYC and vimentin; trans-well migration activity (p = 0

  2. Acute social stress increases biochemical and self report markers of stress without altering spatial learning in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klopp, Christine; Garcia, Carlos; Schulman, Allan H; Ward, Christopher P; Tartar, Jaime L

    2012-01-01

    Spatial learning is shown to be influenced by acute stress in both human and other animals. However, the intricacies of this relationship are unclear. Based on prior findings we hypothesized that compared to a control condition, a social stress condition would not affect spatial learning performance despite elevated biochemical markers of stress. The present study tested the effects of social stress in human males and females on a subsequent spatial learning task. Social stress induction consisted of evaluative stress (the Trier Social Stress Test, TSST) compared to a placebo social stress. Compared to the placebo condition, the TSST resulted in significantly elevated cortisol and alpha amylase levels at multiple time points following stress induction. In accord, cognitive appraisal measures also showed that participants in the TSST group experienced greater perceived stress compared to the placebo group. However, there were no group differences in performance on a spatial learning task. Our findings suggest that unlike physiological stress, social stress does not result in alterations in spatial learning in humans. It is possible that moderate social evaluative stress in humans works to prevent acute stress-mediated alterations in hippocampal learning processes..

  3. Isotope hydrology and baseflow geochemistry in natural and human-altered watersheds in the Inland Pacific Northwest, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Murillo, Ricardo; Brooks, Erin S; Elliot, William J; Boll, Jan

    2015-01-01

    This study presents a stable isotope hydrology and geochemical analysis in the inland Pacific Northwest (PNW) of the USA. Isotope ratios were used to estimate mean transit times (MTTs) in natural and human-altered watersheds using the FLOWPC program. Isotope ratios in precipitation resulted in a regional meteoric water line of δ(2)H = 7.42·δ(18)O + 0.88 (n = 316; r(2) = 0.97). Isotope compositions exhibited a strong temperature-dependent seasonality. Despite this seasonal variation, the stream δ(18)O variation was small. A significant regression (τ = 0.11D(-1.09); r(2) = 0.83) between baseflow MTTs and the damping ratio was found. Baseflow MTTs ranged from 0.4 to 0.6 years (human-altered), 0.7 to 1.7 years (mining-altered), and 0.7 to 3.2 years (forested). Greater MTTs were represented by more homogenous aqueous chemistry whereas smaller MTTs resulted in more dynamic compositions. The isotope and geochemical data presented provide a baseline for future hydrological modelling in the inland PNW.

  4. Recovery of lotic macroinvertebrate communities from disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallace, J. Bruce

    1990-09-01

    Ecosystem disturbances produce changes in macrobenthic community structure (abundances, biomass, and production) that persist for a few weeks to many decades. Examples of disturbances with extremely long-term effects on benthic communities include contamination by persistent toxic agents, physical changes in habitats, and altered energy inputs. Stream size, retention, and local geomorphology may ameliorate the influence of disturbances on invertebrates. Disturbances can alter food webs and may select for favorable genotypes (e.g., insecticidal resistance). Introductions of pesticides into lotic ecosystems, which do not result in major physical changes within habitats, illustrate several factors that influence invertebrate recovery time from disturbance. These include: (1) magnitude of original contamination, toxicity, and extent of continued use; (2) spatial scale of the disturbance; (3) persistence of the pesticide; (4) timing of the contamination in relation to the life history stages of the organisms; (5) vagility of populations influenced by pesticides; and (6) position within the drainage network. The ability of macroinvertebrates to recolonize denuded stream habitats may vary greatly depending on regional life histories, dispersal abilities, and position within the stream network (e.g., headwaters vs larger rivers). Although downstream drift is the most frequently cited mechanism of invertebrate recolonization following disturbance in middle- and larger-order streams, evidence is presented that shows aerial recolonization to be potentially important in headwater streams. There is an apparent stochastic element operating for aerial recolonization, depending on the timing of disturbance and flight periods of various taxa. Available evidence indicates that recolonization of invertebrate taxa without an aerial adult stage requires longer periods of time than for those that possess winged, terrestrial adult stages (i.e., most insects). Innovative, manipulative

  5. Alterations of consciousness and mystical-type experiences after acute LSD in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liechti, Matthias E; Dolder, Patrick C; Schmid, Yasmin

    2017-05-01

    Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) is used recreationally and in clinical research. Acute mystical-type experiences that are acutely induced by hallucinogens are thought to contribute to their potential therapeutic effects. However, no data have been reported on LSD-induced mystical experiences and their relationship to alterations of consciousness. Additionally, LSD dose- and concentration-response functions with regard to alterations of consciousness are lacking. We conducted two placebo-controlled, double-blind, cross-over studies using oral administration of 100 and 200 μg LSD in 24 and 16 subjects, respectively. Acute effects of LSD were assessed using the 5 Dimensions of Altered States of Consciousness (5D-ASC) scale after both doses and the Mystical Experience Questionnaire (MEQ) after 200 μg. On the MEQ, 200 μg LSD induced mystical experiences that were comparable to those in patients who underwent LSD-assisted psychotherapy but were fewer than those reported for psilocybin in healthy subjects or patients. On the 5D-ASC scale, LSD produced higher ratings of blissful state, insightfulness, and changed meaning of percepts after 200 μg compared with 100 μg. Plasma levels of LSD were not positively correlated with its effects, with the exception of ego dissolution at 100 μg. Mystical-type experiences were infrequent after LSD, possibly because of the set and setting used in the present study. LSD may produce greater or different alterations of consciousness at 200 μg (i.e., a dose that is currently used in psychotherapy in Switzerland) compared with 100 μg (i.e., a dose used in imaging studies). Ego dissolution may reflect plasma levels of LSD, whereas more robustly induced effects of LSD may not result in such associations.

  6. Introducing graph theory to track for neuroplastic alterations in the resting human brain: a transcranial direct current stimulation study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polanía, Rafael; Paulus, Walter; Antal, Andrea; Nitsche, Michael A

    2011-02-01

    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a non-invasive brain stimulation technique that alters cortical excitability and activity in a polarity-dependent way. Stimulation for a few minutes has been shown to induce plastic alterations of cortical excitability and to improve cognitive performance. These effects might be related to stimulation-induced alterations of functional cortical network connectivity. We aimed to investigate the impact of tDCS on cortical network function by functional connectivity and graph theoretical analysis of the BOLD fMRI spontaneous activity. fMRI resting-state datasets were acquired immediately before and after 10-min bipolar tDCS during rest, with the anode placed over the left primary motor cortex (M1) and the cathode over the contralateral frontopolar cortex. For each dataset, grey matter voxel-based synchronization matrices were calculated and thresholded to construct undirected graphs. Nodal connectivity degree and minimum path length maps were calculated and compared before and after tDCS. Nodal minimum path lengths significantly increased in the left somatomotor (SM1) cortex after anodal tDCS, which means that the number of direct functional connections from the left SM1 to topologically distant grey matter voxels significantly decreased. In contrast, functional coupling between premotor and superior parietal areas with the left SM1 significantly increased. Additionally, the nodal connectivity degree in the left posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) area as well as in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (right DLPFC) significantly increased. In summary, we provide initial support that tDCS-induced neuroplastic alterations might be related to functional connectivity changes in the human brain. Additionally, we propose our approach as a powerful method to track for neuroplastic changes in the human brain. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Gene expression analysis in human osteoblasts exposed to dexamethasone identifies altered developmental pathways as putative drivers of osteoporosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sadlier Denise M

    2007-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Osteoporosis, a disease of decreased bone mineral density represents a significant and growing burden in the western world. Aging population structure and therapeutic use of glucocorticoids have contributed in no small way to the increase in the incidence of this disease. Despite substantial investigative efforts over the last number of years the exact molecular mechanism underpinning the initiation and progression of osteoporosis remain to be elucidated. This has meant that no significant advances in therapeutic strategies have emerged, with joint replacement surgery being the mainstay of treatment. Methods In this study we have used an integrated genomics profiling and computational biology based strategy to identify the key osteoblast genes and gene clusters whose expression is altered in response to dexamethasone exposure. Primary human osteoblasts were exposed to dexamethasone in vitro and microarray based transcriptome profiling completed. Results These studies identified approximately 500 osteoblast genes whose expression was altered. Functional characterization of the transcriptome identified developmental networks as being reactivated with 106 development associated genes found to be differentially regulated. Pathway reconstruction revealed coordinate alteration of members of the WNT signaling pathway, including frizzled-2, frizzled-7, DKK1 and WNT5B, whose differential expression in this setting was confirmed by real time PCR. Conclusion The WNT pathway is a key regulator of skeletogenesis as well as differentiation of bone cells. Reactivation of this pathway may lead to altered osteoblast activity resulting in decreased bone mineral density, the pathological hallmark of osteoporosis. The data herein lend weight to the hypothesis that alterations in developmental pathways drive the initiation and progression of osteoporosis.

  8. Selenium modulates MMP2 expression through the TGFβ1/Smad signalling pathway in human umbilical vein endothelial cells and rabbits following lipid disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Chenggui; Lu, Guihua; Li, Qinglang; Zhang, Juhong; Huang, Zhibin; Gao, Xiuren

    2017-07-01

    A high-fat diet is a major risk factor for coronary heart diseases. Matrix metalloprotease (MMP) expression is changed in many cardiovascular diseases. Selenium, which is an important trace element in animals, has a close relationship with cardiovascular diseases. The TGFβ1/Smad signalling pathway is ubiquitous in diverse tissues and cells, and it is also associated with the occurrence and development of cardiovascular diseases. Therefore, in this study, we aimed to determine selenium's effect on lipid metabolism, atherosclerotic plaque formation, and MMP2 expression, as well as the underlying functional mechanism. In vivo tests: 24 male New Zealand white rabbits were randomly divided into 4 groups: regular diet, high-fat diet, high-fat diet+selenium and regular diet+selenium groups. The high-fat diet induced the lipid disturbances of rabbits at week 12. Selenium supplementation lowered total cholesterol (TC), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) and triglyceride (TG) levels (pSelenium supplementation also suppressed MMP2 over-expression in thoracic aortas. In vitro tests: Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) were treated with different concentrations of selenium or ox-LDL. Ox-LDL promoted MMP2 expression by increasing TGFβ1, pSmad2, pSmad3 and Smad3 expression (pSelenium attenuated MMP2 over-expression by regulating the TGFβ1/Smad signalling pathway. Selenium suppressed high-fat diet-induced MMP2 over-expression in vivo by improving lipid metabolism. In vitro, selenium attenuated MMP2 over-expression through the TGFβ1/Smad signalling pathway. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  9. Altered global gene expression profiles in human gastrointestinal epithelial Caco2 cells exposed to nanosilver

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saura C. Sahu

    Full Text Available Extensive consumer exposure to food- and cosmetics-related consumer products containing nanosilver is of public safety concern. Therefore, there is a need for suitable in vitro models and sensitive predictive rapid screening methods to assess their toxicity. Toxicogenomic profile showing subtle changes in gene expressions following nanosilver exposure is a sensitive toxicological endpoint for this purpose. We evaluated the Caco2 cells and global gene expression profiles as tools for predictive rapid toxicity screening of nanosilver. We evaluated and compared the gene expression profiles of Caco-2 cells exposed to 20 nm and 50 nm nanosilver at a concentration 2.5 μg/ml. The global gene expression analysis of Caco2 cells exposed to 20 nm nanosilver showed that a total of 93 genes were altered at 4 h exposure, out of which 90 genes were up-regulated and 3 genes were down-regulated. The 24 h exposure of 20 nm silver altered 15 genes in Caco2 cells, out of which 14 were up-regulated and one was down-regulated. The most pronounced changes in gene expression were detected at 4 h. The greater size (50 nm nanosilver at 4 h exposure altered more genes by more different pathways than the smaller (20 nm one. Metallothioneins and heat shock proteins were highly up-regulated as a result of exposure to both the nanosilvers. The cellular pathways affected by the nanosilver exposure is likely to lead to increased toxicity. The results of our study presented here suggest that the toxicogenomic characterization of Caco2 cells is a valuable in vitro tool for assessing toxicity of nanomaterials such as nanosilver. Keywords: Nanosilver, Silver nanoparticles, Nanoparticles, Toxicogenomics, DNA microarray, Global gene expression profiles, Caco2 cells

  10. Human longevity is characterised by high thyroid stimulating hormone secretion without altered energy metabolism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jansen, S W; Akintola, A A; Roelfsema, F

    2015-01-01

    hormone (TH) in an inverse relationship. Greater longevity has been associated with higher TSH and lower TH levels, but mechanisms underlying TSH/TH differences and longevity remain unknown. The HPT axis plays a pivotal role in growth, development and energy metabolism. We report that offspring...... of nonagenarians with at least one nonagenarian sibling have increased TSH secretion but similar bioactivity of TSH and similar TH levels compared to controls. Healthy offspring and spousal controls had similar resting metabolic rate and core body temperature. We propose that pleiotropic effects of the HPT axis...... may favour longevity without altering energy metabolism....

  11. Evidence for Alteration of EZH2, BMI1, and KDM6A and Epigenetic Reprogramming in Human Papillomavirus Type 16 E6/E7-Expressing Keratinocytes ▿

    OpenAIRE

    Hyland, Paula L.; McDade, Simon S.; McCloskey, Rachel; Dickson, Glenda J.; Arthur, Ken; McCance, Dennis J.; Patel, Daksha

    2011-01-01

    A number of epigenetic alterations occur in both the virus and host cellular genomes during human papillomavirus (HPV)-associated carcinogenesis, and investigations of such alterations, including changes in chromatin proteins and histone modifications, have the potential to lead to therapeutic epigenetic reversion. We report here that transformed HPV16 E6/E7-expressing primary human foreskin keratinocytes (HFKs) (E6/E7 cells) demonstrate increased expression of the PRC2 methyltransferase EZH2...

  12. Structural and biochemical alterations of human diabetic dermis studied by 3H-lysine incorporation and microscopy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moczar, M.; Allard, R.; Ouzilou, J.; Robert, L.; Pieraggi, M.-T.; Bouissou, H.; Julian, M.

    1976-01-01

    The alteration of the structural organization of dermal connective tissue was studied by light and electron microscopy and by biochemical techniques in normal human and in diabetic patients using skin biopsies. Part of the tissue was used for light and electron microscopy, the rest was incubated in the presence of 3 H-lysine for four hours. The 3 H-lysine labelled biopsies were submitted to a sequential extraction procedure in order to obtain representative macromolecular fractions containing the matrix macromolecules. The extracts were analyzed for their chemical composition and radioactivity. Electron microscopy revealed microstructural modifications of the fibroblasts, of the collagen and elastic fibers in the diabetic dermis. The incorporation pattern of 3 H-lysine into the macromolecular fractions was different in the normal and diabetic skin biopsies. The percentage of total radioactivity incorporated increased significantly in the 1M CaCl 2 extractable fraction and in the 6M urea extractable fraction and decreased significantly in the collagenase and elastase extracts in diabetic skin biopsy. These results demonstrate the existence of morphological and biochemical alterations in diabetic connective tissue (dermis) reflecting alterations in the relative rates of synthesis and/or degradation of the intercellular matrix macromolecules as well as of their microarchitectural arrangement

  13. Nuclear organization in human sperm: preliminary evidence for altered sex chromosome centromere position in infertile males.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finch, K A; Fonseka, K G L; Abogrein, A; Ioannou, D; Handyside, A H; Thornhill, A R; Hickson, N; Griffin, D K

    2008-06-01

    Many genetic defects with a chromosomal basis affect male reproduction via a range of different mechanisms. Chromosome position is a well-known marker of nuclear organization, and alterations in standard patterns can lead to disease phenotypes such as cancer, laminopathies and epilepsy. It has been demonstrated that normal mammalian sperm adopt a pattern with the centromeres aligning towards the nuclear centre. The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that altered chromosome position in the sperm head is associated with male infertility. The average nuclear positions of fluorescence in-situ hybridization signals for three centromeric probes (for chromosomes X, Y and 18) were compared in normoozoospermic men and in men with compromised semen parameters. In controls, the centromeres of chromosomes X, Y and 18 all occupied a central nuclear location. In infertile men the sex chromosomes appeared more likely to be distributed in a pattern not distinguishable from a random model. Our findings cast doubt on the reliability of centromeric probes for aneuploidy screening. The analysis of chromosome position in sperm heads should be further investigated for the screening of infertile men.

  14. Physical interface dynamics alter how robotic exosuits augment human movement: implications for optimizing wearable assistive devices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yandell, Matthew B; Quinlivan, Brendan T; Popov, Dmitry; Walsh, Conor; Zelik, Karl E

    2017-05-18

    Wearable assistive devices have demonstrated the potential to improve mobility outcomes for individuals with disabilities, and to augment healthy human performance; however, these benefits depend on how effectively power is transmitted from the device to the human user. Quantifying and understanding this power transmission is challenging due to complex human-device interface dynamics that occur as biological tissues and physical interface materials deform and displace under load, absorbing and returning power. Here we introduce a new methodology for quickly estimating interface power dynamics during movement tasks using common motion capture and force measurements, and then apply this method to quantify how a soft robotic ankle exosuit interacts with and transfers power to the human body during walking. We partition exosuit end-effector power (i.e., power output from the device) into power that augments ankle plantarflexion (termed augmentation power) vs. power that goes into deformation and motion of interface materials and underlying soft tissues (termed interface power). We provide empirical evidence of how human-exosuit interfaces absorb and return energy, reshaping exosuit-to-human power flow and resulting in three key consequences: (i) During exosuit loading (as applied forces increased), about 55% of exosuit end-effector power was absorbed into the interfaces. (ii) However, during subsequent exosuit unloading (as applied forces decreased) most of the absorbed interface power was returned viscoelastically. Consequently, the majority (about 75%) of exosuit end-effector work over each stride contributed to augmenting ankle plantarflexion. (iii) Ankle augmentation power (and work) was delayed relative to exosuit end-effector power, due to these interface energy absorption and return dynamics. Our findings elucidate the complexities of human-exosuit interface dynamics during transmission of power from assistive devices to the human body, and provide insight into

  15. Human reproductive system disturbances and pesticide exposure in Brazil Distúrbios do sistema reprodutivo humano e exposição a pesticidas no Brasil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Koifman

    2002-04-01

    Full Text Available The observation of reproductive disturbances in humans and in the wildlife has been reported in the last decade in different countries. Exposure to different chemicals possibly acting in the endocrine system or endocrine disruptors, including pesticides, has been a hypothesis raised to explain the observed changes. This paper aimed to present results of an epidemiological ecologic study carried out to explore population data on pesticides exposure in selected Brazilian states in the eighties and human reproductive outcomes in the nineties. Pearson correlation coefficients were ascertained between available data pesticides sales in eleven states in Brazil in 1985 and selected further reproductive outcomes or their surrogates. Moderate to high correlations were observed to infertility, testis, breast, prostate and ovarian cancer mortality. Despite the restrains of ecologic studies to establish cause-effect relationships, the observed results are in agreement with evidence supporting a possible association between pesticides exposure and the analyzed reproductive outcomes.A observação de distúrbios reprodutivos em seres humanos e na vida animal tem sido relatada em diferentes países na última década, sendo apontada como possível explicação para tal fenômeno, a exposição a diversas substâncias químicas com possível interferência no sistema endócrino, incluindo pesticidas. Este trabalho apresenta os resultados de um estudo epidemiológico, com delineamento ecológico explorando dados de exposição a pesticidas durante os anos oitenta, em estados brasileiros selecionados e distúrbios reprodutivos observados nos anos noventa. Foram obtidos coeficientes de correlação de Pearson entre o volume de vendas de pesticidas em onze estados brasileiros em 1985 e indicadores diretos ou substitutos da ocorrência de distúrbios reprodutivos nas mesmas localidades. Coeficientes de correlação moderados e elevados foram observados para a

  16. A plant taxonomic survey of the Uranium City region, Lake Athabasca north shore, emphasizing the naturally colonizing plants on uranium mine and mill wastes and other human-disturbed sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harms, V.L.

    1982-07-01

    A goal of this study was to acquire more complete baseline data on the existing flora of the Uranium City region, both in natural and human-disturbed sites. Emphasis was given to determining which plant species were naturally revegetating various abandoned uranium mine and mill waste disposal areas, other human-disturbed sites, and ecologically analogous sites. Another goal was to document the occurrence and distribution in the study region of rare and possibly endangered species. A further objective was to suggest regionally-occurring species with potential value for revegetating uranium mine and mill waste sites. Field investigations were carried out in the Uranium City region during August, 1981. During this time 1412 plant collections were made; a total of 366 plant species - trees, shrubs, forbs, graminoids, lichens, and bryophytes were recorded. The report includes an annotated checklist of plant species of the Uranium City region and a reference index of plant taxa indicating species that have high revegetation potential

  17. Characterization of a cultured human T-cell line with genetically altered ribonucleotide reductase activity. Model for immunodeficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waddell, D; Ullman, B

    1983-04-10

    From human CCRF-CEM T-cells growing in continuous culture, we have selected, isolated, and characterized a clonal cell line, APHID-D2, with altered ribonucleotide reductase activity. In comparative growth rate experiments, the APHID-D2 cell line is less sensitive than the parental cell line to growth inhibition by deoxyadenosine in the presence of 10 microM erythro-9-(2-hydroxy-3-nonyl)adenine, an inhibitor of adenosine deaminase. The APHID-D2 cell line has elevated levels of all four dNTPs. The resistance of the APHID-D2 cell line to growth inhibition by deoxyadenosine and the abnormal dNTP levels can be explained by the fact that the APHID-D2 ribonucleotide reductase, unlike the parental ribonucleotide reductase, is not normally sensitive to inhibition by dATP. These results suggest that the allosteric site of ribonucleotide reductase which binds both dATP and ATP is altered in the APHID-D2 line. The isolation of a mutant clone of human T-cells which contains a ribonucleotide reductase that has lost its normal sensitivity to dATP and which is resistant to deoxyadenosine-mediated growth inhibition suggests that a primary pathogenic target of accumulated dATP in lymphocytes from patients with adenosine deaminase deficiency may be the cellular ribonucleotide reductase.

  18. Ecosystem services altered by human changes in the nitrogen cycle: a new perspective for US decision making.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Compton, Jana E; Harrison, John A; Dennis, Robin L; Greaver, Tara L; Hill, Brian H; Jordan, Stephen J; Walker, Henry; Campbell, Holly V

    2011-08-01

    Human alteration of the nitrogen (N) cycle has produced benefits for health and well-being, but excess N has altered many ecosystems and degraded air and water quality. US regulations mandate protection of the environment in terms that directly connect to ecosystem services. Here, we review the science quantifying effects of N on key ecosystem services, and compare the costs of N-related impacts or mitigation using the metric of cost per unit of N. Damage costs to the provision of clean air, reflected by impaired human respiratory health, are well characterized and fairly high (e.g. costs of ozone and particulate damages of $28 per kg NO(x)-N). Damage to services associated with productivity, biodiversity, recreation and clean water are less certain and although generally lower, these costs are quite variable (ecosystem services provides decision-makers an integrated view of N sources, damages and abatement costs to address the significant challenges associated with reducing N pollution. Published 2011. This article is a US Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  19. Genetic alterations in fatty acid transport and metabolism genes are associated with metastatic progression and poor prognosis of human cancers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nath, Aritro; Chan, Christina

    2016-01-04

    Reprogramming of cellular metabolism is a hallmark feature of cancer cells. While a distinct set of processes drive metastasis when compared to tumorigenesis, it is yet unclear if genetic alterations in metabolic pathways are associated with metastatic progression of human cancers. Here, we analyzed the mutation, copy number variation and gene expression patterns of a literature-derived model of metabolic genes associated with glycolysis (Warburg effect), fatty acid metabolism (lipogenesis, oxidation, lipolysis, esterification) and fatty acid uptake in >9000 primary or metastatic tumor samples from the multi-cancer TCGA datasets. Our association analysis revealed a uniform pattern of Warburg effect mutations influencing prognosis across all tumor types, while copy number alterations in the electron transport chain gene SCO2, fatty acid uptake (CAV1, CD36) and lipogenesis (PPARA, PPARD, MLXIPL) genes were enriched in metastatic tumors. Using gene expression profiles, we established a gene-signature (CAV1, CD36, MLXIPL, CPT1C, CYP2E1) that strongly associated with epithelial-mesenchymal program across multiple cancers. Moreover, stratification of samples based on the copy number or expression profiles of the genes identified in our analysis revealed a significant effect on patient survival rates, thus confirming prominent roles of fatty acid uptake and metabolism in metastatic progression and poor prognosis of human cancers.

  20. Platelets alter gene expression profile in human brain endothelial cells in an in vitro model of cerebral malaria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathieu Barbier

    Full Text Available Platelet adhesion to the brain microvasculature has been associated with cerebral malaria (CM in humans, suggesting that platelets play a role in the pathogenesis of this syndrome. In vitro co-cultures have shown that platelets can act as a bridge between Plasmodium falciparum-infected red blood cells (pRBC and human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBEC and potentiate HBEC apoptosis. Using cDNA microarray technology, we analyzed transcriptional changes of HBEC in response to platelets in the presence or the absence of tumor necrosis factor (TNF and pRBC, which have been reported to alter gene expression in endothelial cells. Using a rigorous statistical approach with multiple test corrections, we showed a significant effect of platelets on gene expression in HBEC. We also detected a strong effect of TNF, whereas there was no transcriptional change induced specifically by pRBC. Nevertheless, a global ANOVA and a two-way ANOVA suggested that pRBC acted in interaction with platelets and TNF to alter gene expression in HBEC. The expression of selected genes was validated by RT-qPCR. The analysis of gene functional annotation indicated that platelets induce the expression of genes involved in inflammation and apoptosis, such as genes involved in chemokine-, TREM1-, cytokine-, IL10-, TGFβ-, death-receptor-, and apoptosis-signaling. Overall, our results support the hypothesis that platelets play a pathogenic role in CM.

  1. Human longevity is characterised by high thyroid stimulating hormone secretion without altered energy metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jansen, S W; Akintola, A A; Roelfsema, F; van der Spoel, E; Cobbaert, C M; Ballieux, B E; Egri, P; Kvarta-Papp, Z; Gereben, B; Fekete, C; Slagboom, P E; van der Grond, J; Demeneix, B A; Pijl, H; Westendorp, R G J; van Heemst, D

    2015-06-19

    Few studies have included subjects with the propensity to reach old age in good health, with the aim to disentangle mechanisms contributing to staying healthier for longer. The hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid (HPT) axis maintains circulating levels of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) and thyroid hormone (TH) in an inverse relationship. Greater longevity has been associated with higher TSH and lower TH levels, but mechanisms underlying TSH/TH differences and longevity remain unknown. The HPT axis plays a pivotal role in growth, development and energy metabolism. We report that offspring of nonagenarians with at least one nonagenarian sibling have increased TSH secretion but similar bioactivity of TSH and similar TH levels compared to controls. Healthy offspring and spousal controls had similar resting metabolic rate and core body temperature. We propose that pleiotropic effects of the HPT axis may favour longevity without altering energy metabolism.

  2. The renal metallothionein expression profile is altered in human lupus nephritis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Faurschou, Mikkel; Penkowa, Milena; Andersen, Claus Bøgelund

    2008-01-01

    of standard statistical methods. RESULTS: Proximal tubules displaying epithelial cell MT-I+II depletion in combination with luminal MT-I+II expression were observed in 31 out of 37 of the lupus nephritis specimens, but not in any of the control sections (P = 0.006). The tubular MT score, defined as the median......INTRODUCTION: Metallothionein (MT) isoforms I + II are polypeptides with potent antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties. In healthy kidneys, MT-I+II have been described as intracellular proteins of proximal tubular cells. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether the renal MT......-I+II expression profile is altered during lupus nephritis. METHODS: Immunohistochemistry was performed on renal biopsies from 37 patients with lupus nephritis. Four specimens of healthy renal tissue served as controls. Clinicopathological correlation studies and renal survival analyses were performed by means...

  3. DNA methylation is altered in B and NK lymphocytes in obese and type 2 diabetic human

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Simar, David; Versteyhe, Soetkin; Donkin, Ida

    2014-01-01

    (T2D). The aim of this study was to determine the global DNA methylation profile of immune cells in obese and T2D individuals in a cell type-specific manner. Material and methods Fourteen obese subjects and 11 age-matched lean subjects, as well as 12 T2D obese subjects and 7 age-matched lean subjects.......001). Results Global DNA methylation in peripheral blood mononuclear cells, monocytes, lymphocytes or T cells was not altered in obese or T2D subjects. However, analysis of blood fractions from lean, obese, and T2D subjects showed increased methylation levels in B cells from obese and T2D subjects...

  4. Influence of disturbance on temperate forest productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, Emily B.; Wythers, Kirk R.; Bradford, John B.; Reich, Peter B.

    2013-01-01

    Climate, tree species traits, and soil fertility are key controls on forest productivity. However, in most forest ecosystems, natural and human disturbances, such as wind throw, fire, and harvest, can also exert important and lasting direct and indirect influence over productivity. We used an ecosystem model, PnET-CN, to examine how disturbance type, intensity, and frequency influence net primary production (NPP) across a range of forest types from Minnesota and Wisconsin, USA. We assessed the importance of past disturbances on NPP, net N mineralization, foliar N, and leaf area index at 107 forest stands of differing types (aspen, jack pine, northern hardwood, black spruce) and disturbance history (fire, harvest) by comparing model simulations with observations. The model reasonably predicted differences among forest types in productivity, foliar N, leaf area index, and net N mineralization. Model simulations that included past disturbances minimally improved predictions compared to simulations without disturbance, suggesting the legacy of past disturbances played a minor role in influencing current forest productivity rates. Modeled NPP was more sensitive to the intensity of soil removal during a disturbance than the fraction of stand mortality or wood removal. Increasing crown fire frequency resulted in lower NPP, particularly for conifer forest types with longer leaf life spans and longer recovery times. These findings suggest that, over long time periods, moderate frequency disturbances are a relatively less important control on productivity than climate, soil, and species traits.

  5. Human ecstasy (MDMA) polydrug users have altered brain activation during semantic processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watkins, Tristan J; Raj, Vidya; Lee, Junghee; Dietrich, Mary S; Cao, Aize; Blackford, Jennifer U; Salomon, Ronald M; Park, Sohee; Benningfield, Margaret M; Di Iorio, Christina R; Cowan, Ronald L

    2013-05-01

    Ecstasy (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine [MDMA]) polydrug users have verbal memory performance that is statistically significantly lower than that of control subjects. Studies have correlated long-term MDMA use with altered brain activation in regions that play a role in verbal memory. The aim of our study was to examine the association of lifetime ecstasy use with semantic memory performance and brain activation in ecstasy polydrug users. A total of 23 abstinent ecstasy polydrug users (age = 24.57 years) and 11 controls (age = 22.36 years) performed a two-part functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) semantic encoding and recognition task. To isolate brain regions activated during each semantic task, we created statistical activation maps in which brain activation was greater for word stimuli than for non-word stimuli (corrected p ecstasy polydrug users had greater activation during semantic encoding bilaterally in language processing regions, including Brodmann areas 7, 39, and 40. Of this bilateral activation, signal intensity with a peak T in the right superior parietal lobe was correlated with lifetime ecstasy use (r s = 0.43, p = 0.042). Behavioral performance did not differ between groups. These findings demonstrate that ecstasy polydrug users have increased brain activation during semantic processing. This increase in brain activation in the absence of behavioral deficits suggests that ecstasy polydrug users have reduced cortical efficiency during semantic encoding, possibly secondary to MDMA-induced 5-HT neurotoxicity. Although pre-existing differences cannot be ruled out, this suggests the possibility of a compensatory mechanism allowing ecstasy polydrug users to perform equivalently to controls, providing additional support for an association of altered cerebral neurophysiology with MDMA exposure.

  6. Avian abundance thresholds, human-altered landscapes, and the challenge of assemblage-level conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kevin J. Gutzwiller; Samuel K. Riffell; Curtis H. Flather

    2015-01-01

    Context: Land-use change is a global phenomenon with potential to generate abrupt spatial changes in species’ distributions. Objectives: We assessed whether theory about the internal structure of bird species’ geographic ranges can be refined to reflect abrupt changes in distribution and abundance associated with human influences on landscapes, and whether the...

  7. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor in human subjects with function-altering melanocortin-4 receptor variants

    Science.gov (United States)

    In rodents, hypothalamic brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) expression appears to be regulated by melanocortin-4 receptor (MC4R) activity. The impact of MC4R genetic variation on circulating BDNF in humans is unknown. The objective of this study is to compare BDNF concentrations of subjects wi...

  8. Altered gene expression of Staphylococcus aureus upon interaction with human endothelial cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vriesema, A.J.M.; Beekhuizen, H.; Hamdi, M.; Soufan, A.; Lammers, A.; Willekens, B.; Bakker, O.; Veltrop, M.H.A.M.; Gevel, van de J.S.; Dankert, J.; Zaat, S.A.J.

    2000-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is isolated from a substantial number of patients with infective endocarditis who are not known to have predisposing heart abnormalities. It has been suggested that the infection is initiated by the direct binding of S. aureus to human vascular endothelium. To determine the

  9. Altered gene expression in Staphylococcus aureus upon interaction with human endothelial cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vriesema, A. J.; Beekhuizen, H.; Hamdi, M.; Soufan, A.; Lammers, A.; Willekens, B.; Bakker, O.; Welten, A. G.; Veltrop, M. H.; van de Gevel, J. S.; Dankert, J.; Zaat, S. A.

    2000-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is isolated from a substantial number of patients with infective endocarditis who are not known to have predisposing heart abnormalities. It has been suggested that the infection is initiated by the direct binding of S. aureus to human vascular endothelium. To determine the

  10. Serum vitamin D levels are not altered after controlled diesel exhaust exposures in healthy human subjects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Past research has suggested that exposure to urban air pollution may be associated with vitamin D deficiency in human populations. Vitamin D is widely known for its importance in bone growth/remodeling, muscle metabolism, and its ability to promote calcium absorption in the gut; ...

  11. Wolbachia infection does not alter attraction of the mosquito Aedes (Stegomyia) aegypti to human odours

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Turley, A.P.; Smallegange, R.C.; Takken, W.; Zalucki, M.P.; O'Neill, S.L.; McGraw, E.A.

    2014-01-01

    The insect endosymbiont Wolbachia pipientis (Rickettsiales: Rickettsiaceae) is undergoing field trials around the world to determine if it can reduce transmission of dengue virus from the mosquito Stegomyia aegypti to humans. Two different Wolbachia strains have been released to date. The primary

  12. Genetic alterations of the long terminal repeat of an ecotropic porcine endogenous retrovirus during passage in human cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Denner, Joachim; Specke, Volker; Thiesen, Ulla; Karlas, Alexander; Kurth, Reinhard

    2003-01-01

    Human-tropic porcine endogenous retroviruses (PERV) such as PERV-A and PERV-B can infect human cells and are therefore a potential risk to recipients of xenotransplants. A similar risk is posed by recombinant viruses containing the receptor-binding site of PERV-A and large parts of the genome of the ecotropic PERV-C including its long terminal repeat (LTR). We describe here the unique organization of the PERV-C LTR and its changes during serial passage of recombinant virus in human cells. An increase in virus titer correlated with an increase in LTR length, caused by multiplication of 37-bp repeats containing nuclear factor Y binding sites. Luciferase dual reporter assays revealed a correlation between the number of repeats and the extent of expression. No alterations have been observed in the receptor-binding site, indicating that the increased titer is due to the changes in the LTR. These data indicate that recombinant PERVs generated during infection of human cells can adapt and subsequently replicate with greater efficiency

  13. Conservation of wildlife populations: factoring in incremental disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stewart, Abbie; Komers, Petr E

    2017-06-01

    Progressive anthropogenic disturbance can alter ecosystem organization potentially causing shifts from one stable state to another. This potential for ecosystem shifts must be considered when establishing targets and objectives for conservation. We ask whether a predator-prey system response to incremental anthropogenic disturbance might shift along a disturbance gradient and, if it does, whether any disturbance thresholds are evident for this system. Development of linear corridors in forested areas increases wolf predation effectiveness, while high density of development provides a safe-haven for their prey. If wolves limit moose population growth, then wolves and moose should respond inversely to land cover disturbance. Using general linear model analysis, we test how the rate of change in moose ( Alces alces ) density and wolf ( Canis lupus ) harvest density are influenced by the rate of change in land cover and proportion of land cover disturbed within a 300,000 km 2 area in the boreal forest of Alberta, Canada. Using logistic regression, we test how the direction of change in moose density is influenced by measures of land cover change. In response to incremental land cover disturbance, moose declines occurred where 43% of land cover was disturbed and wolf density declined. Wolves and moose appeared to respond inversely to incremental disturbance with the balance between moose decline and wolf increase shifting at about 43% of land cover disturbed. Conservation decisions require quantification of disturbance rates and their relationships to predator-prey systems because ecosystem responses to anthropogenic disturbance shift across disturbance gradients.

  14. Unusual metaphyseal disturbance in two kittens

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gunn-Moore, D.A.; Hagard, G.; Turner, C.; Duncan, A.W.; Barr, F.J.

    1996-01-01

    This report describes the presenting features, radiographic changes, biochemical alterations and clinical progress of two kittens, from separate litters, which were found to have a growth plate disturbance initially diagnosed and treated as vitamin D3-dependent rickets, but subsequently suspected to be a metaphyseal chondrodysplasia

  15. Sleep disturbances after non-cardiac surgery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rosenberg, Jacob

    2001-01-01

    . The sleep disturbances seem to be related to the magnitude of trauma and thereby to the surgical stress response and/or post-operative opioid administration. Post-operative sleep disturbances may contribute to the development of early post-operative fatigue, episodic hypoxaemia, haemodynamic instability......After major non-cardiac surgery sleep pattern is usually disturbed with initial suppression of rapid eye movement sleep with a subsequent rebound during the first post-operative week. Deep sleep is also suppressed for several days after the operation and subjective sleep quality is impaired...... and altered mental status, all with a potential negative effect on post-operative outcome. Minimizing surgical trauma and avoiding or minimizing use of opioids for pain relief may prevent or reduce post-operative sleep disturbances. Post-operative sleep pattern represents an important research field, since...

  16. Postural stability is altered by the stimulation of pain but not warm receptors in humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corbeil Philippe

    2003-10-01

    -noxious stimulation (40 degrees C of the small diameter afferents is not a sufficiently intense sensory stimulation to alter the control of posture. A painful stimulation (45 degrees C of the skin thermoreceptors, however, yielded a deterioration of the postural control system. The observed deteriorating effects of the combined stimulation of nociceptors and Ia afferents (when ankle tendons were vibrated could result from the convergence of these afferents at the spinal level. This could certainly lead to the hypothesis that individuals suffering from lower limb pain present alterations of the postural control mechanisms; especially populations already at risk of falling (for example, frail elderly or populations suffering from concomitant lower limb pain and sensory deficits (for example, diabetic polyneuropathy.

  17. Postural stability is altered by the stimulation of pain but not warm receptors in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blouin, Jean-Sébastien; Corbeil, Philippe; Teasdale, Normand

    2003-10-17

    sufficiently intense sensory stimulation to alter the control of posture. A painful stimulation (45 degrees C) of the skin thermoreceptors, however, yielded a deterioration of the postural control system. The observed deteriorating effects of the combined stimulation of nociceptors and Ia afferents (when ankle tendons were vibrated) could result from the convergence of these afferents at the spinal level. This could certainly lead to the hypothesis that individuals suffering from lower limb pain present alterations of the postural control mechanisms; especially populations already at risk of falling (for example, frail elderly) or populations suffering from concomitant lower limb pain and sensory deficits (for example, diabetic polyneuropathy).

  18. Vaccination targeting human HER3 alters the phenotype of infiltrating T cells and responses to immune checkpoint inhibition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osada, Takuya; Morse, Michael A; Hobeika, Amy; Diniz, Marcio A; Gwin, William R; Hartman, Zachary; Wei, Junping; Guo, Hongtao; Yang, Xiao-Yi; Liu, Cong-Xiao; Kaneko, Kensuke; Broadwater, Gloria; Lyerly, H Kim

    2017-01-01

    Expression of human epidermal growth factor family member 3 (HER3), a critical heterodimerization partner with EGFR and HER2, promotes more aggressive biology in breast and other epithelial malignancies. As such, inhibiting HER3 could have broad applicability to the treatment of EGFR- and HER2-driven tumors. Although lack of a functional kinase domain limits the use of receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors, HER3 contains antigenic targets for T cells and antibodies. Using novel human HER3 transgenic mouse models of breast cancer, we demonstrate that immunization with recombinant adenoviral vectors encoding full length human HER3 (Ad-HER3-FL) induces HER3-specific T cells and antibodies, alters the T cell infiltrate in tumors, and influences responses to immune checkpoint inhibitions. Both preventative and therapeutic Ad-HER3-FL immunization delayed tumor growth but were associated with both intratumoral PD-1 expressing CD8 + T cells and regulatory CD4 + T cell infiltrates. Immune checkpoint inhibition with either anti-PD-1 or anti-PD-L1 antibodies increased intratumoral CD8 + T cell infiltration and eliminated tumor following preventive vaccination with Ad-HER3-FL vaccine. The combination of dual PD-1/PD-L1 and CTLA4 blockade slowed the growth of tumor in response to Ad-HER3-FL in the therapeutic model. We conclude that HER3-targeting vaccines activate HER3-specific T cells and induce anti-HER3 specific antibodies, which alters the intratumoral T cell infiltrate and responses to immune checkpoint inhibition.

  19. Thirty Minutes of Hypobaric Hypoxia Provokes Alterations of Immune Response, Haemostasis, and Metabolism Proteins in Human Serum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jochen Hinkelbein

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Hypobaric hypoxia (HH during airline travel induces several (patho- physiological reactions in the human body. Whereas severe hypoxia is investigated thoroughly, very little is known about effects of moderate or short-term hypoxia, e.g. during airline flights. The aim of the present study was to analyse changes in serum protein expression and activation of signalling cascades in human volunteers staying for 30 min in a simulated altitude equivalent to airline travel. After approval of the local ethics committee, 10 participants were exposed to moderate hypoxia (simulation of 2400 m or 8000 ft for 30 min in a hypobaric pressure chamber. Before and after hypobaric hypoxia, serum was drawn, centrifuged, and analysed by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DIGE and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization followed by time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF. Biological functions of regulated proteins were identified using functional network analysis (GeneMania®, STRING®, and Perseus® software. In participants, oxygen saturation decreased from 98.1 ± 1.3% to 89.2 ± 1.8% during HH. Expression of 14 spots (i.e., 10 proteins: ALB, PGK1, APOE, GAPDH, C1QA, C1QB, CAT, CA1, F2, and CLU was significantly altered. Bioinformatic analysis revealed an association of the altered proteins with the signalling cascades “regulation of haemostasis” (four proteins, “metabolism” (five proteins, and “leukocyte mediated immune response” (five proteins. Even though hypobaric hypoxia was short and moderate (comparable to an airliner flight, analysis of protein expression in human subjects revealed an association to immune response, protein metabolism, and haemostasis

  20. Renal cortical and medullary blood flow responses to altered NO availability in humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Damkjær, Mads; Vafaee, Manoucher; Møller, Michael L

    2010-01-01

    The objective of this study was to quantify regional renal blood flow in humans. In nine young volunteers on a controlled diet, the lower abdomen was CT-scanned, and regional renal blood flow was determined by positron emission tomography (PET) scanning using H(2)(15)O as tracer. Measurements were......-NMMA injection to 1.57 ± 0.17 ml·g tissue(-1)·min(-1) (P blood flow was 4.67 ± 0.31 ml·g tissue(-1)·min(-1) during control, unchanged by glyceryl nitrate, and decreased after L-NMMA [3.48 ± 0.23 ml·(g·min)(-1), P renal medullary region in which...... the measured blood flow is 1) low, 2) independent of reduction in the VOI, and 3) reactive to changes in systemic NO supply. The technique seems to provide indices of renal medullary blood flow in humans....

  1. Increasing Human Neural Stem Cell Transplantation Dose Alters Oligodendroglial and Neuronal Differentiation after Spinal Cord Injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katja M. Piltti

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Multipotent human central nervous system-derived neural stem cells transplanted at doses ranging from 10,000 (low to 500,000 (very high cells differentiated predominantly into the oligodendroglial lineage. However, while the number of engrafted cells increased linearly in relationship to increasing dose, the proportion of oligodendrocytic cells declined. Increasing dose resulted in a plateau of engraftment, enhanced neuronal differentiation, and increased distal migration caudal to the transplantation sites. Dose had no effect on terminal sensory recovery or open-field locomotor scores. However, total human cell number and decreased oligodendroglial proportion were correlated with hindlimb girdle coupling errors. Conversely, greater oligodendroglial proportion was correlated with increased Ab step pattern, decreased swing speed, and increased paw intensity, consistent with improved recovery. These data suggest that transplant dose, and/or target niche parameters can regulate donor cell engraftment, differentiation/maturation, and lineage-specific migration profiles.

  2. Albinism-causing mutations in recombinant human tyrosinase alter intrinsic enzymatic activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dolinska, Monika B; Kovaleva, Elena; Backlund, Peter; Wingfield, Paul T; Brooks, Brian P; Sergeev, Yuri V

    2014-01-01

    Tyrosinase (TYR) catalyzes the rate-limiting, first step in melanin production and its gene (TYR) is mutated in many cases of oculocutaneous albinism (OCA1), an autosomal recessive cause of childhood blindness. Patients with reduced TYR activity are classified as OCA1B; some OCA1B mutations are temperature-sensitive. Therapeutic research for OCA1 has been hampered, in part, by the absence of purified, active, recombinant wild-type and mutant human enzymes. The intra-melanosomal domain of human tyrosinase (residues 19-469) and two OCA1B related temperature-sensitive mutants, R422Q and R422W were expressed in insect cells and produced in T. ni larvae. The short trans-membrane fragment was deleted to avoid potential protein insolubility, while preserving all other functional features of the enzymes. Purified tyrosinase was obtained with a yield of >1 mg per 10 g of larval biomass. The protein was a monomeric glycoenzyme with maximum enzyme activity at 37°C and neutral pH. The two purified mutants when compared to the wild-type protein were less active and temperature sensitive. These differences are associated with conformational perturbations in secondary structure. The intramelanosomal domains of recombinant wild-type and mutant human tyrosinases are soluble monomeric glycoproteins with activities which mirror their in vivo function. This advance allows for the structure - function analyses of different mutant TYR proteins and correlation with their corresponding human phenotypes; it also provides an important tool to discover drugs that may improve tyrosinase activity and treat OCA1.

  3. Albinism-causing mutations in recombinant human tyrosinase alter intrinsic enzymatic activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika B Dolinska

    Full Text Available Tyrosinase (TYR catalyzes the rate-limiting, first step in melanin production and its gene (TYR is mutated in many cases of oculocutaneous albinism (OCA1, an autosomal recessive cause of childhood blindness. Patients with reduced TYR activity are classified as OCA1B; some OCA1B mutations are temperature-sensitive. Therapeutic research for OCA1 has been hampered, in part, by the absence of purified, active, recombinant wild-type and mutant human enzymes.The intra-melanosomal domain of human tyrosinase (residues 19-469 and two OCA1B related temperature-sensitive mutants, R422Q and R422W were expressed in insect cells and produced in T. ni larvae. The short trans-membrane fragment was deleted to avoid potential protein insolubility, while preserving all other functional features of the enzymes. Purified tyrosinase was obtained with a yield of >1 mg per 10 g of larval biomass. The protein was a monomeric glycoenzyme with maximum enzyme activity at 37°C and neutral pH. The two purified mutants when compared to the wild-type protein were less active and temperature sensitive. These differences are associated with conformational perturbations in secondary structure.The intramelanosomal domains of recombinant wild-type and mutant human tyrosinases are soluble monomeric glycoproteins with activities which mirror their in vivo function. This advance allows for the structure - function analyses of different mutant TYR proteins and correlation with their corresponding human phenotypes; it also provides an important tool to discover drugs that may improve tyrosinase activity and treat OCA1.

  4. Microglia show altered morphology and reduced arborization in human brain during aging and Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, Danielle S; Ma, Jolande; Jegathees, Thuvarahan; Goldsbury, Claire

    2017-11-01

    Changes in microglia function are involved in Alzheimer's disease (AD) for which ageing is the major risk factor. We evaluated microglial cell process morphologies and their gray matter coverage (arborized area) during ageing and in the presence and absence of AD pathology in autopsied human neocortex. Microglial cell processes were reduced in length, showed less branching and reduced arborized area with aging (case range 52-98 years). This occurred during normal ageing and without microglia dystrophy or changes in cell density. There was a larger reduction in process length and arborized area in AD compared to aged-matched control microglia. In AD cases, on average, 49%-64% of microglia had discontinuous and/or punctate Iba1 labeled processes instead of continuous Iba1 distribution. Up to 16% of aged-matched control microglia displayed discontinuous or punctate features. There was no change in the density of microglial cell bodies in gray matter during ageing or AD. This demonstrates that human microglia show progressive cell process retraction without cell loss during ageing. Additional changes in microglia occur with AD including Iba1 protein puncta and discontinuity. We suggest that reduced microglial arborized area may be an aging-related correlate of AD in humans. These variations in microglial cells during ageing and in AD could reflect changes in neural-glial interactions which are emerging as key to mechanisms involved in ageing and neurodegenerative disease. © 2016 International Society of Neuropathology.

  5. Acquisition of anoikis resistance in human osteosarcoma cells does not alter sensitivity to chemotherapeutic agents

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Díaz-Montero, C Marcela; McIntyre, Bradley W

    2005-01-01

    Chemotherapy-induced cell death can involve the induction of apoptosis. Thus, aberrant function of the pathways involved might result in chemoresistance. Since cell adhesion to the extracellular matrix acts as a survival factor that homeostatically maintains normal tissue architecture, it was tested whether acquisition of resistance to deadhesion-induced apoptosis (anoikis) in human osteosarcoma would result in resistance to chemotherapy. Osteosarcoma cell lines (SAOS-2 and TE-85) obtained from ATCC and were maintained in complete Eagle's MEM medium. Suspension culture was established by placing cells in tissue culture wells coated with poly-HEMA. Cell cytotoxicity was determined using a live/dead cytotoxicity assay. Cell cycle/apoptosis analyses were performed using propidium iodide (PI) staining with subsequent FACS analysis. Apoptosis was also assayed by Annexin-FITC/PI staining. Etoposide, adriamycin, vinblastine, cisplatin and paclitaxel were able to induce apoptosis in human osteosarcoma cells SAOS-2 regardless of their anoikis resistance phenotype or the culture conditions (adhered vs. suspended). Moreover, suspended anoikis resistant TE-85 cells (TE-85ar) retained their sensitivity to chemotherapy as well. Acquisition of anoikis resistance in human osteosarcoma cells does not result in a generalized resistance to all apoptotic stimuli, including chemotherapy. Moreover, our results suggest that the pathways regulating anoikis resistance and chemotherapy resistance might involve the action of different mediators

  6. Acquisition of anoikis resistance in human osteosarcoma cells does not alter sensitivity to chemotherapeutic agents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    McIntyre Bradley W

    2005-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Chemotherapy-induced cell death can involve the induction of apoptosis. Thus, aberrant function of the pathways involved might result in chemoresistance. Since cell adhesion to the extracellular matrix acts as a survival factor that homeostatically maintains normal tissue architecture, it was tested whether acquisition of resistance to deadhesion-induced apoptosis (anoikis in human osteosarcoma would result in resistance to chemotherapy. Methods Osteosarcoma cell lines (SAOS-2 and TE-85 obtained from ATCC and were maintained in complete Eagle's MEM medium. Suspension culture was established by placing cells in tissue culture wells coated with poly-HEMA. Cell cytotoxicity was determined using a live/dead cytotoxicity assay. Cell cycle/apoptosis analyses were performed using propidium iodide (PI staining with subsequent FACS analysis. Apoptosis was also assayed by Annexin-FITC/PI staining. Results Etoposide, adriamycin, vinblastine, cisplatin and paclitaxel were able to induce apoptosis in human osteosarcoma cells SAOS-2 regardless of their anoikis resistance phenotype or the culture conditions (adhered vs. suspended. Moreover, suspended anoikis resistant TE-85 cells (TE-85ar retained their sensitivity to chemotherapy as well. Conclusion Acquisition of anoikis resistance in human osteosarcoma cells does not result in a generalized resistance to all apoptotic stimuli, including chemotherapy. Moreover, our results suggest that the pathways regulating anoikis resistance and chemotherapy resistance might involve the action of different mediators.

  7. Altered expression of asparagine synthetase mRNA in human leukemic and carcinoma cell lines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Goodwin, L.O.; Guzowski, D.E.; Millan, C.A. [North Shore Univ. Hospital/Cornell Univ. Medical College, Manhasset, NY (United States)] [and others

    1994-09-01

    Asparagine synthetase (AS) is the enzyme responsible for the ATP-dependant conversion of aspartic acid to asparagine. The AS gene is expressed constitutively in most mammalian cells, including cells of the lymphoid lineage, as a 2 kb mRNA. In some leukemic phenotypes, AS expression is abrogated, resulting in no detectable enzyme activity. These cells are rendered sensitive to killing by L-asparaginase, which destroys extracellular asparagine. Prolonged treatment of leukemic cells with this agent can lead to resistance and the reappearance of AS activity, suggesting derepression of the AS gene, which has been shown to be regulated by intracellular levels of asparagine. Modulation of AS expression by asparagine employs cis and trans-acting elements involved in transcriptional and translational regulation. We have cloned and sequenced the human AS gene and surrounding sequence elements as well as the full-length cDNA. Using probes specific to the third and fourth exons of AS, we have identified an additional higher molecular weight mRNA (2.7 kb) in Northern blots derived from a chronic myelogenous leukemia and a colon carcinoma but not in normal lymphocytic or other human cell lines. We speculate that elements present in the cancer-derived mRNAs may be involved in the derepression of AS activity. This hypothesis is being evaluated by RNase protection assays using RNA isolated from a variety of human cell lines to characterize and elucidate the nature of this additional AS encoded message.

  8. Alteration of a human intestinal microbiota under extreme life environment in the Antarctica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Jong-Sik; Touyama, Mutsumi; Yamada, Shin; Yamazaki, Takashi; Benno, Yoshimi

    2014-01-01

    The human intestinal microbiota (HIM) settles from birth and continues to change phenotype by some factors (e.g. host's diet) throughout life. However, the effect of extreme life environment on human HIM composition is not well known. To understand HIM fluctuation under extreme life environment in humans, fecal samples were collected from six Japanese men on a long Antarctic expedition. They explored Antarctica for 3 months and collected their fecal samples at once-monthly intervals. Using terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) and real time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis, the composition of HIM in six subjects was investigated. Three subjects presented restoration of HIM after the expedition compared versus before and during the expedition. Two thirds samples collected during the expedition belonged to the same cluster in dendrogram. However, all through the expedition, T-RFLP patterns showed interindividual variability. Especially, Bifidobacterium spp. showed a tendency to decrease during and restore after the expedition. A reduction of Bifidobacterium spp. was observed in five subjects the first 1 month of the expedition. Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron, which is thought to proliferate during emotional stress, significantly decreased in one subject, indicating that other factors in addition to emotional stress may affect the composition of HIM in this study. These findings could be helpful to understand the effect of extreme life environment on HIM.

  9. Effects of climate change on ecological disturbances [Chapter 8

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danielle M. Malesky; Barbara J. Bentz; Gary R. Brown; Andrea R. Brunelle; John M. Buffington; Linda M. Chappell; R. Justin DeRose; John C. Guyon; Carl L. Jorgensen; Rachel A. Loehman; Laura L. Lowrey; Ann M. Lynch; Marek Matyjasik; Joel D. McMillin; Javier E. Mercado; Jesse L. Morris; Jose F. Negron; Wayne G. Padgett; Robert A. Progar; Carol B. Randall

    2018-01-01

    This chapter describes disturbance regimes in the Intermountain Adaptation Partnership (IAP) region, and potential shifts in these regimes as a consequence of observed and projected climate change. The term "disturbance regime" describes the general temporal and spatial characteristics of a disturbance agent (e.g., insects, disease, fire, weather, human...

  10. Rapid Electrical Stimulation Increased Cardiac Apoptosis Through Disturbance of Calcium Homeostasis and Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Le Geng

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Heart failure induced by tachycardia, the most common arrhythmia, is frequently observed in clinical practice. This study was designed to investigate the underlying mechanisms. Methods: Rapid electrical stimulation (RES at a frequency of 3 Hz was applied on human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hiPSC-CMs for 7 days, with 8 h/day and 24 h/day set to represent short-term and long-term tachycardia, respectively. Age-matched hiPSC-CMs without electrical stimulation or with slow electrical stimulation (1 Hz were set as no electrical stimulation (NES control or low-frequency electrical stimulation (LES control. Following stimulation, JC-1 staining flow cytometry analysis was performed to examine mitochondrial conditions. Apoptosis in hiPSC-CMs was evaluated using Hoechst staining and Annexin V/propidium iodide (AV/PI staining flow cytometry analysis. Calcium transients and L-type calcium currents were recorded to evaluate calcium homeostasis. Western blotting and qPCR were performed to evaluate the protein and mRNA expression levels of apoptosis-related genes and calcium homeostasis-regulated genes. Results: Compared to the controls, hiPSC-CMs following RES presented mitochondrial dysfunction and an increased apoptotic percentage. Amplitudes of calcium transients and L-type calcium currents were significantly decreased in hiPSC-CMs with RES. Molecular analysis demonstrated upregulated expression of Caspase3 and increased Bax/Bcl-2 ratio. Genes related to calcium re-sequence were downregulated, while phosphorylated Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII was significantly upregulated following RES. There was no significant difference between the NES control and LES control groups in these aspects. Inhibition of CaMKII with 1 µM KN93 partly reversed these adverse effects of RES. Conclusion: RES on hiPSC-CMs disturbed calcium homeostasis, which led to mitochondrial stress, promoted cell apoptosis and

  11. LDLR expression and localization are altered in mouse and human cell culture models of Alzheimer's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose F Abisambra

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Alzheimer's disease (AD is a chronic neurodegenerative disorder and the most common form of dementia. The major molecular risk factor for late-onset AD is expression of the epsilon-4 allele of apolipoprotein E (apoE, the major cholesterol transporter in the brain. The low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR has the highest affinity for apoE and plays an important role in brain cholesterol metabolism. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using RT-PCR and western blotting techniques we found that over-expression of APP caused increases in both LDLR mRNA and protein levels in APP transfected H4 neuroglioma cells compared to H4 controls. Furthermore, immunohistochemical experiments showed aberrant localization of LDLR in H4-APP neuroglioma cells, Abeta-treated primary neurons, and in the PSAPP transgenic mouse model of AD. Finally, immunofluorescent staining of LDLR and of gamma- and alpha-tubulin showed a change in LDLR localization preferentially away from the plasma membrane that was paralleled by and likely the result of a disruption of the microtubule-organizing center and associated microtubule network. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These data suggest that increased APP expression and Abeta exposure alters microtubule function, leading to reduced transport of LDLR to the plasma membrane. Consequent deleterious effects on apoE uptake and function will have implications for AD pathogenesis and/or progression.

  12. Linking models of human behaviour and climate alters projected climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beckage, Brian; Gross, Louis J.; Lacasse, Katherine; Carr, Eric; Metcalf, Sara S.; Winter, Jonathan M.; Howe, Peter D.; Fefferman, Nina; Franck, Travis; Zia, Asim; Kinzig, Ann; Hoffman, Forrest M.

    2018-01-01

    Although not considered in climate models, perceived risk stemming from extreme climate events may induce behavioural changes that alter greenhouse gas emissions. Here, we link the C-ROADS climate model to a social model of behavioural change to examine how interactions between perceived risk and emissions behaviour influence projected climate change. Our coupled climate and social model resulted in a global temperature change ranging from 3.4-6.2 °C by 2100 compared with 4.9 °C for the C-ROADS model alone, and led to behavioural uncertainty that was of a similar magnitude to physical uncertainty (2.8 °C versus 3.5 °C). Model components with the largest influence on temperature were the functional form of response to extreme events, interaction of perceived behavioural control with perceived social norms, and behaviours leading to sustained emissions reductions. Our results suggest that policies emphasizing the appropriate attribution of extreme events to climate change and infrastructural mitigation may reduce climate change the most.

  13. Ablation of p120-Catenin Altering the Activity of Small GTPase in Human Lung Cancer Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nan LIU

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Background and objective p120-catenin (p120ctn, a member of the Armadillo gene family, has emerged as an important modulator of small GTPase activities. Therefore, it plays novel roles in tumor malignant phenotype, such as invasion and metastasis, whose mechanism are not well clarified yet. The aim of this study is to explore the roles of p120ctn on the regulation of small GTP family members in lung cancer and the effects to lung cancer invasions andmetastasis. Methods After p120ctn was knocked down by siRNA, in vivo and in vitro analysis was applied to investigate the role and possible mechanism of p120ctn in lung cancer, such as Western Blot, pull-down analysis, and nude mice models. Results p120ctn depletion inactivated RhoA, with the the activity of Cdc42 and Rac1 increased, the invasiveness of lung cancer cells was promoted both in vitro and in vivo . Conclusion p120ctn gene knockdown enhances the metastasis of lung cancer cells, probably by altering expression of small GTPase, such as inactivation of RhoA and activation of Cdc42/Rac1.

  14. Sleep restriction alters plasma endocannabinoids concentrations before but not after exercise in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cedernaes, Jonathan; Fanelli, Flaminia; Fazzini, Alessia; Pagotto, Uberto; Broman, Jan-Erik; Vogel, Heike; Dickson, Suzanne L; Schiöth, Helgi B; Benedict, Christian

    2016-12-01

    Following binding to cannabinoid receptors, endocannabinoids regulate a variety of central nervous system processes including appetite and mood. Recent evidence suggests that the systemic release of these lipid metabolites can be altered by acute exercise and that their levels also vary across the 24-h sleep-wake cycle. The present study utilized a within-subject design (involving 16 normal-weight men) to determine whether daytime circulating endocannabinoid concentrations differ following three nights of partial sleep deprivation (4.25-h sleep opportunity, 2:45-7a.m. each night) vs. normal sleep (8.5-h sleep opportunity, 10:30p.m.-7a.m. each night), before and after an acute bout of ergometer cycling in the morning. In addition, subjective hunger and stress were measured. Pre-exercise plasma concentrations of 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2AG) were 80% higher 1.5h after awakening (vs. normal sleep, pexercise (+44%, pexercise-induced rise. Finally, subjective stress was generally lower on the day after three nights of short sleep vs. normal sleep, especially after exercise (pexercise-induced elevations of endocannabinoids appear to be less affected by short sleep duration. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  15. Postural vascular response in human skin: passive and active reactions to alteration of transmural pressure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jepsen, H; Gaehtgens, P

    1993-09-01

    Laser-Doppler (LD) fluxmetry was performed in the palmar finger skin of healthy subjects to study the mechanisms contributing to the postural vascular response. Local transmural pressure in the skin blood vessels of the region studied was altered for 1 min in two experimental series either by passive movement of the arm to different vertical hand positions relative to heart level or by application of external pressure (-120-180 mmHg) to the finger. Heart and respiratory rate, arterial blood pressure, and LD flux in the contralateral finger (kept at heart level) were measured. The measurements suggest a compound reaction of local (myogenic) and systemic (neurogenic) mechanisms: the local regulatory component appears as a graded active vascular response elicited by passive vessel distension or compression. A systemic component, associated with a single deep inspiration, is frequently observed during the actual movement of the arm. In addition, prolonged holding of the test hand in a given vertical position also elicits a delayed vascular response in the control hand at heart level, which may be generated by volume receptors in the intrathoracic low-pressure system.

  16. Evidence for chronically altered cortical serotonin function in human female recreational ecstasy (MDMA) polydrug users

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Iorio, Christina R; Watkins, Tristan J; Dietrich, Mary S; Cao, Aize; Blackford, Jennifer U; Rogers, Baxter; Ansari, Mohammed S; Baldwin, Ronald M; Li, Rui; Kessler, Robert M; Salomon, Ronald M; Benningfield, Margaret; Cowan, Ronald L

    2012-01-01

    Context MDMA (ecstasy) is a popular recreational drug that produces loss of serotonin (5-HT) axons in animal models. Whether MDMA produces chronic reductions in 5-HT signaling in humans remains controversial. Objective To determine if MDMA use is associated with chronic reductions in serotonin signaling in female human cerebral cortex as reflected by increased 5-HT2A receptors. Design Cross sectional case-control study comparing 5-HT2A receptor levels in abstinent female MDMA polydrug users to MDMA-naive females; within-group design assessing the association of lifetime MDMA use and 5-HT2A receptors. Subjects had at least 90 days abstinence from MDMA use as verified by hair sampling. Cortical 5-HT2A receptor levels were assayed with the 5HT2A-specific Positron Emission Tomography (PET) radioligand [18F]setoperone. Setting Academic Medical Center Research Laboratory. Participants Volunteer female MDMA users (N=14) and MDMA-naive controls (N=10). Main exclusion criteria were non-drug-related DSM-IV axis I psychiatric disorders and general medical illness. Main Outcome Measure Cortical 5-HT2A receptor non-displaceable binding potential (5-HT2ABPND). Results MDMA users had increased 5-HT2ABPND in occipital-parietal (19.7%), temporal (20.5%), occipito-temporal-parietal (18.3%), frontal (16.6%), and fronto-parietal (18.5%) regions (pMDMA use associated positively with 5-HT2ABPND in fronto-parietal (β=0.665;p=0.007), occipito-temporal (β=0.798;p=0.002), fronto-limbic (β=0.634;p=0.024), and frontal (β=0.691;p=0.008) regions. In contrast, there were no regions in which MDMA use was inversely associated with receptor levels. There were no statistically significant effects of the duration of MDMA abstinence on 5-HT2ABPND. Conclusions Human recreational MDMA use is associated with long-lasting increases in 5-HT2A receptor density. 5-HT2A receptor levels correlate positively with lifetime MDMA use and do not decrease with abstinence. These results suggest that MDMA produces

  17. Xenobiotics that affect oxidative phosphorylation alter differentiation of human adipose-derived stem cells at concentrations that are found in human blood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Llobet

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Adipogenesis is accompanied by differentiation of adipose tissue-derived stem cells to adipocytes. As part of this differentiation, biogenesis of the oxidative phosphorylation system occurs. Many chemical compounds used in medicine, agriculture or other human activities affect oxidative phosphorylation function. Therefore, these xenobiotics could alter adipogenesis. We have analyzed the effects on adipocyte differentiation of some xenobiotics that act on the oxidative phosphorylation system. The tested concentrations have been previously reported in human blood. Our results show that pharmaceutical drugs that decrease mitochondrial DNA replication, such as nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors, or inhibitors of mitochondrial protein synthesis, such as ribosomal antibiotics, diminish adipocyte differentiation and leptin secretion. By contrast, the environmental chemical pollutant tributyltin chloride, which inhibits the ATP synthase of the oxidative phosphorylation system, can promote adipocyte differentiation and leptin secretion, leading to obesity and metabolic syndrome as postulated by the obesogen hypothesis.

  18. Altered endoribonuclease activity of apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1 variants identified in the human population.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wan Cheol Kim

    Full Text Available Apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1 (APE1 is the major mammalian enzyme in the DNA base excision repair pathway and cleaves the DNA phosphodiester backbone immediately 5' to abasic sites. APE1 also has 3'-5' DNA exonuclease and 3' DNA phosphodiesterase activities, and regulates transcription factor DNA binding through its redox regulatory function. The human APE1 has recently been shown to endonucleolytically cleave single-stranded regions of RNA. Towards understanding the biological significance of the endoribonuclease activity of APE1, we examined eight different amino acid substitution variants of APE1 previously identified in the human population. Our study shows that six APE1 variants, D148E, Q51H, I64V, G241R, R237A, and G306A, exhibit a 76-85% reduction in endoribonuclease activity against a specific coding region of the c-myc RNA, yet fully retain the ability to cleave apurinic/apyrimidinic DNA. We found that two APE1 variants, L104R and E126D, exhibit a unique RNase inhibitor-resistant endoribonuclease activity, where the proteins cleave c-myc RNA 3' of specific single-stranded guanosine residues. Expression of L104R and E126D APE1 variants in bacterial Origami cells leads to a 60-80% reduction in colony formation and a 1.5-fold increase in cell doubling time, whereas the other variants, which exhibit diminished endoribonuclease activity, had no effect. These data indicate that two human APE1 variants exhibit a unique endoribonuclease activity, which correlates with their ability to induce cytotoxicity or slow down growth in bacterial cells and supports the notion of their biological functionality.

  19. Human inherited diseases with altered mechanisms for DNA repair and mutagenesis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cleaver, J.E.

    1977-01-01

    A variety of human diseases involving clinical symptoms of increased cancer risk, and disorders of the central nervous system, and of hematopoietic, immunological, ocular, and cutaneous tissues and embryological development have defects in biochemical pathways for excision repair of damaged DNA. Excision repair has multiple branches by which damaged nucleotides, bases, and cross-links are excised and requires cofactors that control the access of repair enzymes to damage in DNA in chromatin. Diseases in which repair defects are a consistent feature of their biochemistry include xeroderma pigmentosum, ataxia telangiectasia and Fanconi's anemia.

  20. Human Ro60 (SSA2) genomic organization and sequence alterations, examined in cutaneous lupus erythematosus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millard, T P; Ashton, G H S; Kondeatis, E; Vaughan, R W; Hughes, G R V; Khamashta, M A; Hawk, J L M; McGregor, J M; McGrath, J A

    2002-02-01

    The Ro 60 kDa protein (Ro60 or SSA2) is the major component of the Ro ribonucleoprotein (Ro RNP) complex, to which an immune response is a specific feature of several autoimmune diseases. The genomic organization and any sequence variation within the DNA encoding Ro60 are unknown. To characterize the Ro60 gene structure and to assess whether any sequence alterations might be associated with serum anti-Ro antibody in subacute cutaneous lupus erythematosus (SCLE), thus potentially providing new insight into disease pathogenesis. The cDNA sequence for Ro60 was obtained from the NCBI database and used for a BLAST search for a clone containing the entire genomic sequence. The intron-exon borders were confirmed by designing intronic primer pairs to flank each exon, which were then used to amplify genomic DNA for automated sequencing from 36 caucasian patients with SCLE (anti-Ro positive) and 49 with discoid LE (DLE, anti-Ro negative), in addition to 36 healthy caucasian controls. Heteroduplex analysis of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) products from patients and controls spanning all Ro60 exons (1-8) revealed a common bandshift in the PCR products spanning exon 7. Sequencing of the corresponding PCR products demonstrated an A > G substitution at nucleotide position 1318-7, within the consensus acceptor splice site of exon 7 (GenBank XM001901). The allele frequencies were major allele A (0.71) and minor allele G (0.29) in 72 control chromosomes, with no significant differences found between SCLE patients, DLE patients and controls. The genomic organization of the DNA encoding the Ro60 protein is described, including a common polymorphism within the consensus acceptor splice site of exon 7. Our delineation of a strategy for the genomic amplification of Ro60 forms a basis for further examination of the pathological functions of the Ro RNP in autoimmune disease.

  1. Structural alterations in a component of cytochrome c oxidase and molecular evolution of pathogenic Neisseria in humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina Aspholm

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Three closely related bacterial species within the genus Neisseria are of importance to human disease and health. Neisseria meningitidis is a major cause of meningitis, while Neisseria gonorrhoeae is the agent of the sexually transmitted disease gonorrhea and Neisseria lactamica is a common, harmless commensal of children. Comparative genomics have yet to yield clear insights into which factors dictate the unique host-parasite relationships exhibited by each since, as a group, they display remarkable conservation at the levels of nucleotide sequence, gene content and synteny. Here, we discovered two rare alterations in the gene encoding the CcoP protein component of cytochrome cbb(3 oxidase that are phylogenetically informative. One is a single nucleotide polymorphism resulting in CcoP truncation that acts as a molecular signature for the species N. meningitidis. We go on to show that the ancestral ccoP gene arose by a unique gene duplication and fusion event and is specifically and completely distributed within species of the genus Neisseria. Surprisingly, we found that strains engineered to express either of the two CcoP forms conditionally differed in their capacity to support nitrite-dependent, microaerobic growth mediated by NirK, a nitrite reductase. Thus, we propose that changes in CcoP domain architecture and ensuing alterations in function are key traits in successive, adaptive radiations within these metapopulations. These findings provide a dramatic example of how rare changes in core metabolic proteins can be connected to significant macroevolutionary shifts. They also show how evolutionary change at the molecular level can be linked to metabolic innovation and its reversal as well as demonstrating how genotype can be used to infer alterations of the fitness landscape within a single host.

  2. Simulated Microgravity Alters Actin Cytoskeleton and Integrin-Mediated Focal Adhesions of Cultured Human Mesenchymal Stromal Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gershovich, P. M.; Gershovic, J. G.; Buravkova, L. B.

    2008-06-01

    Cytoskeletal alterations occur in several cell types including lymphocytes, glial cells, and osteoblasts, during spaceflight and under simulated microgravity (SMG) (3, 4). One potential mechanism for cytoskeletal gravisensitivity is disruption of extracellular matrix (ECM) and integrin interactions. Focal adhesions are specialized sites of cell-matrix interaction composed of integrins and the diversity of focal adhesion-associated cytoplasmic proteins including vinculin, talin, α-actinin, and actin filaments (4, 5). Integrins produce signals essential for proper cellular function, survival and differentiation. Therefore, we investigated the effects of SMG on F-actin cytoskeleton structure, vinculin focal adhesions, expression of some integrin subtypes and cellular adhesion molecules (CAMs) in mesenchymal stem cells derived from human bone marrow (hMSCs). Simulated microgravity was produced by 3D-clinostat (Dutch Space, Netherlands). Staining of actin fibers with TRITC-phalloidin showed reorganization even after 30 minutes of simulated microgravity. The increasing of cells number with abnormal F-actin was observed after subsequent terms of 3D-clinorotation (6, 24, 48, 120 hours). Randomization of gravity vector altered dimensional structure of stress fibers and resulted in remodeling of actin fibers inside the cells. In addition, we observed vinculin redistribution inside the cells after 6 hours and prolonged terms of clinorotation. Tubulin fibers in a contrast with F-actin and vinculin didn't show any reorganization even after long 3Dclinorotation (120 hours). The expression of integrin α2 increased 1,5-6-fold in clinorotated hMSCs. Also we observed decrease in number of VCAM-1-positive cells and changes in expression of ICAM-1. Taken together, our findings indicate that SMG leads to microfilament and adhesion alterations of hMSCs most probably associated with involvement of some integrin subtypes.

  3. Alterations in physical state of silver nanoparticles exposed to synthetic human stomach fluid

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rogers, Kim R.; Bradham, Karen; Tolaymat, Thabet; Thomas, David J.; Hartmann, Thomas; Ma, Longzhou; Williams, Alan

    2012-01-01

    The bioavailability of ingested silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) depends in large part on initial particle size, shape and surface coating, properties which will influence aggregation, solubility and chemical composition during transit of the gastrointestinal tract. Citrate-stabilized AgNPs were exposed to synthetic human stomach fluid (SSF) (pH 1.5) and changes in size, shape, zeta potential, hydrodynamic diameter and chemical composition were determined during a 1 h exposure period using Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR), High Resolution Transmission Electron Microscopy/Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (TEM/EDS), Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS) and X-ray Powder Diffraction (XRD) combined with Rietveld analysis. Exposure of AgNPs to SSF produced a rapid decrease in the SPR peak at 414 nm and the appearance of a broad absorbance peak in the near infrared (NIR) spectral region. During exposure to SSF, changes in zeta potential, aggregation and morphology of the particles were also observed as well as production of silver chloride which appeared physically associated with particle aggregates. - Highlights: ► Citrate-stabilized AgNPs were exposed to synthetic human stomach fluid (pH 1.5). ► Particle changes in chemical composition, zeta potential, aggregation and morphology were observed. ► Silver chloride appeared to be physically associated with the particle aggregates.

  4. Alterations in physical state of silver nanoparticles exposed to synthetic human stomach fluid

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rogers, Kim R., E-mail: rogers.kim@epa.gov [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Las Vegas, NV (United States); Bradham, Karen [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Tolaymat, Thabet [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Cincinnati, OH (United States); Thomas, David J. [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Hartmann, Thomas; Ma, Longzhou [University of Nevada, Harry Reid Center for Environmental Studies, Las Vegas, NV (United States); Williams, Alan [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Las Vegas, NV (United States)

    2012-03-15

    The bioavailability of ingested silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) depends in large part on initial particle size, shape and surface coating, properties which will influence aggregation, solubility and chemical composition during transit of the gastrointestinal tract. Citrate-stabilized AgNPs were exposed to synthetic human stomach fluid (SSF) (pH 1.5) and changes in size, shape, zeta potential, hydrodynamic diameter and chemical composition were determined during a 1 h exposure period using Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR), High Resolution Transmission Electron Microscopy/Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (TEM/EDS), Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS) and X-ray Powder Diffraction (XRD) combined with Rietveld analysis. Exposure of AgNPs to SSF produced a rapid decrease in the SPR peak at 414 nm and the appearance of a broad absorbance peak in the near infrared (NIR) spectral region. During exposure to SSF, changes in zeta potential, aggregation and morphology of the particles were also observed as well as production of silver chloride which appeared physically associated with particle aggregates. - Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Citrate-stabilized AgNPs were exposed to synthetic human stomach fluid (pH 1.5). Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Particle changes in chemical composition, zeta potential, aggregation and morphology were observed. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Silver chloride appeared to be physically associated with the particle aggregates.

  5. Heterozygous loss of TSC2 alters p53 signaling and human stem cell reprogramming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armstrong, Laura C; Westlake, Grant; Snow, John P; Cawthon, Bryan; Armour, Eric; Bowman, Aaron B; Ess, Kevin C

    2017-12-01

    Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) is a pediatric disorder of dysregulated growth and differentiation caused by loss of function mutations in either the TSC1 or TSC2 genes, which regulate mTOR kinase activity. To study aberrations of early development in TSC, we generated induced pluripotent stem cells using dermal fibroblasts obtained from patients with TSC. During validation, we found that stem cells generated from TSC patients had a very high rate of integration of the reprogramming plasmid containing a shRNA against TP53. We also found that loss of one allele of TSC2 in human fibroblasts is sufficient to increase p53 levels and impair stem cell reprogramming. Increased p53 was also observed in TSC2 heterozygous and homozygous mutant human stem cells, suggesting that the interactions between TSC2 and p53 are consistent across cell types and gene dosage. These results support important contributions of TSC2 heterozygous and homozygous mutant cells to the pathogenesis of TSC and the important role of p53 during reprogramming. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  6. Biological Activity Alterations of Human Amniotic Membrane Pre and Post Irradiation Tissue Banking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nemr, Waleed; Bashandy, A S; Araby, Eman; Khamiss, O

    Innate immunity of Human Amniotic Membrane (HAM) and its highly active secretome that rich with various types of growth factors and anti-inflammatory substances proposed it as a promising material for many medical studies and applications. This study evaluate the biological activity of cultivated HAM pre and post tissue banking process in which freeze-dried HAM was sterilized by 25 KGray (kGy) dose of γ radiation. The HAM's antimicrobial activity, viability, growth of isolated human amniotic epithelial cells (HAECs), hematopoietic stimulation of co-cultivated murine bone marrow cells (mammalian model), scaffold efficiency for fish brain building up (non-mammalian model) and self re-epithelialization after trypsin denuding treatment were examined as supposed biological activity features. Native HAM revealed viability indications and was active to kill all tested microorganisms; 6 bacterial species (3 Gram-positive and 3 Gram-negative) and Candida albicans as a pathogenic fungus. Also, HAM activity promoted colony formation of murine hematopoietic cells, Tilapia nilotica brain fragment building-up and self re-epithelialization after trypsin treatment. In contrary, radiation-based tissue banking of HAM caused HAM cellular death and consequently lacked almost all of examined biological activity features. Viable HAM was featured with biological activity than fixed HAM prepared by irradiation tissue banking.

  7. A walk on the wild side: Disturbance dynamics and the conservation and management of European mountain forest ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulakowski, Dominik; Seidl, Rupert; Holeksa, Jan; Kuuluvainen, Timo; Nagel, Thomas A; Panayotov, Momchil; Svoboda, Miroslav; Thorn, Simon; Vacchiano, Giorgio; Whitlock, Cathy; Wohlgemuth, Thomas; Bebi, Peter

    2017-03-15

    Mountain forests are among the most important ecosystems in Europe as they support numerous ecological, hydrological, climatic, social, and economic functions. They are unique relatively natural ecosystems consisting of long-lived species in an otherwise densely populated human landscape. Despite this, centuries of intensive forest management in many of these forests have eclipsed evidence of natural processes, especially the role of disturbances in long-term forest dynamics. Recent trends of land abandonment and establishment of protected forests have coincided with a growing interest in managing forests in more natural states. At the same time, the importance of past disturbances highlighted in an emerging body of literature, and recent increasing disturbances due to climate change are challenging long-held views of dynamics in these ecosystems. Here, we synthesize aspects of this Special Issue on the ecology of mountain forest ecosystems in Europe in the context of broader discussions in the field, to present a new perspective on these ecosystems and their natural disturbance regimes. Most mountain forests in Europe, for which long-term data are available, show a strong and long-term effect of not only human land use but also of natural disturbances that vary by orders of magnitude in size and frequency. Although these disturbances may kill many trees, the forests themselves have not been threatened. The relative importance of natural disturbances, land use, and climate change for ecosystem dynamics varies across space and time. Across the continent, changing climate and land use are altering forest cover, forest structure, tree demography, and natural disturbances, including fires, insect outbreaks, avalanches, and wind disturbances. Projected continued increases in forest area and biomass along with continued warming are likely to further promote forest disturbances. Episodic disturbances may foster ecosystem adaptation to the effects of ongoing and future

  8. A Revisit to the Impacts of Land Use Changes on the Human Wellbeing via Altering the Ecosystem Provisioning Services

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiangzheng Deng

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available It is widely acknowledged that land use changes (LUC associated with climate variations are affecting the human wellbeing. This paper conducted a revisit to relevant researches on the impacts of LUC on human wellbeing via specifically altering the ecosystem provisioning services. First, the explorations on the influences of LUC on ecosystem provisioning services were reviewed, including the researches on the influences of LUC on agroecosystem services and forest and/or grassland ecosystem services. Then the quantitative identification of the impacts of LUC on ecosystem provisioning services was commented on. In the light of enhanced observation and valuation methods, several approaches to ecosystem services and improved models for assessing those ecosystem services were assessed. The major indicators used to uncover the influences of LUC on human wellbeing were summarized including the increase of inputs and the reduction of outputs in production and the augmented health risk induced by the irrational land uses. Finally, this paper uncovered the research gaps and proposed several research directions to address these gaps.

  9. Obese fathers lead to an altered metabolism and obesity in their children in adulthood: review of experimental and human studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernanda Ornellas

    Full Text Available Abstract Objective: To discuss the recent literature on paternal obesity, focusing on the possible mechanisms of transmission of the phenotypes from the father to the children. Sources: A non-systematic review in the PubMed database found few publications in which paternal obesity was implicated in the adverse transmission of characteristics to offspring. Specific articles on epigenetics were also evaluated. As the subject is recent and still controversial, all articles were considered regardless of year of publication. Summary of findings: Studies in humans and animals have established that paternal obesity impairs their hormones, metabolism, and sperm function, which can be transmitted to their offspring. In humans, paternal obesity results in insulin resistance/type 2 diabetes and increased levels of cortisol in umbilical cord blood, which increases the risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Notably, there is an association between body fat in parents and the prevalence of obesity in their daughters. In animals, paternal obesity led to offspring alterations on glucose-insulin homeostasis, hepatic lipogenesis, hypothalamus/feeding behavior, kidney of the offspring; it also impairs the reproductive potential of male offspring with sperm oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction. An explanation for these observations (human and animal is epigenetics, considered the primary tool for the transmission of phenotypes from the father to offspring, such as DNA methylation, histone modifications, and non-coding RNA. Conclusions: Paternal obesity can induce programmed phenotypes in offspring through epigenetics. Therefore, it can be considered a public health problem, affecting the children's future life.

  10. Extensive evolutionary changes in regulatory element activity during human origins are associated with altered gene expression and positive selection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoichiro Shibata

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the molecular basis for phenotypic differences between humans and other primates remains an outstanding challenge. Mutations in non-coding regulatory DNA that alter gene expression have been hypothesized as a key driver of these phenotypic differences. This has been supported by differential gene expression analyses in general, but not by the identification of specific regulatory elements responsible for changes in transcription and phenotype. To identify the genetic source of regulatory differences, we mapped DNaseI hypersensitive (DHS sites, which mark all types of active gene regulatory elements, genome-wide in the same cell type isolated from human, chimpanzee, and macaque. Most DHS sites were conserved among all three species, as expected based on their central role in regulating transcription. However, we found evidence that several hundred DHS sites were gained or lost on the lineages leading to modern human and chimpanzee. Species-specific DHS site gains are enriched near differentially expressed genes, are positively correlated with increased transcription, show evidence of branch-specific positive selection, and overlap with active chromatin marks. Species-specific sequence differences in transcription factor motifs found within these DHS sites are linked with species-specific changes in chromatin accessibility. Together, these indicate that the regulatory elements identified here are genetic contributors to transcriptional and phenotypic differences among primate species.

  11. mTORC1 Inhibition Corrects Neurodevelopmental and Synaptic Alterations in a Human Stem Cell Model of Tuberous Sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veronica Costa

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Hyperfunction of the mTORC1 pathway has been associated with idiopathic and syndromic forms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD, including tuberous sclerosis, caused by loss of either TSC1 or TSC2. It remains largely unknown how developmental processes and biochemical signaling affected by mTORC1 dysregulation contribute to human neuronal dysfunction. Here, we have characterized multiple stages of neurogenesis and synapse formation in human neurons derived from TSC2-deleted pluripotent stem cells. Homozygous TSC2 deletion causes severe developmental abnormalities that recapitulate pathological hallmarks of cortical malformations in patients. Both TSC2+/− and TSC2−/− neurons display altered synaptic transmission paralleled by molecular changes in pathways associated with autism, suggesting the convergence of pathological mechanisms in ASD. Pharmacological inhibition of mTORC1 corrects developmental abnormalities and synaptic dysfunction during independent developmental stages. Our results uncouple stage-specific roles of mTORC1 in human neuronal development and contribute to a better understanding of the onset of neuronal pathophysiology in tuberous sclerosis.

  12. NMR studies of human blood cells in health and disease. I. Alterations of the plasma membrane water permeability of erythrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Katona, Eva; Doaga, I. O.; Radulet, Diana; Caplanusi, A.; Negreanu, Cezarina; Mihele, Denisa

    1999-01-01

    Alterations in pathological cases of the human erythrocyte membrane water permeability were investigated by using a Mn 2+ -doping 1 H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) technique. The temperature dependence of the apparent water diffusional exchange through erythrocyte membranes in chronic hepatitis, diabetes, dyslipidemia and essential hypertension was measured and compared to healthy controls. Using moderate manganese concentrations (9-18 mM) and Carr-Purcell-Meiboom-Gill pulse sequences with a large number of refocusing π pulses and short interpulse delay (100 μs) our values of the water exchange times (τ e ) across erythrocyte membranes, obtained within a 10 min time period following the moment of doping, were independent of the actual manganese concentration and the Arrhenius plot for water exchange was linear over the range of 22-42 deg C. A marked increase of the water exchange times values was observed in all studied disease states. In case of chronic hepatitis, diabetes and dyslipidemia the changes observed in transmembrane water exchange time were associated with significant increase in the apparent activation energy of the diffusional water permeability thus, pointing out alterations in the function of the erythrocyte water channel. (author)

  13. NMR studies of human blood cells in health and disease. I. Alterations of the plasma membrane water permeability of erythrocytes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Katona, Eva; Doaga, I O; Radulet, Diana [Department of Biophysics, Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmaceutics, 8 Blvd. Eroilor Sanitari, POB 15-205, RO-76241 Bucharest (Romania); Caplanusi, A [Medical Biochemistry Department, Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmaceutics, 8 Blvd. Eroilor Sanitari, POB 15-205, RO-76241 Bucharest (Romania); Negreanu, Cezarina [Division of New Energy Conversion Methods, Institute of Research and Design for Thermoenergetic Equipment, ICPET-CERCETARE, Bucharest (Romania); Mihele, Denisa [Clinical Laboratory Department, Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmaceutics, 8 Blvd. Eroilor Sanitari, POB 15-205, RO-76241 Bucharest (Romania)

    1999-07-01

    Alterations in pathological cases of the human erythrocyte membrane water permeability were investigated by using a Mn{sup 2+}-doping {sup 1}H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) technique. The temperature dependence of the apparent water diffusional exchange through erythrocyte membranes in chronic hepatitis, diabetes, dyslipidemia and essential hypertension was measured and compared to healthy controls. Using moderate manganese concentrations (9-18 mM) and Carr-Purcell-Meiboom-Gill pulse sequences with a large number of refocusing {pi} pulses and short interpulse delay (100 {mu}s) our values of the water exchange times ({tau}{sub e}) across erythrocyte membranes, obtained within a 10 min time period following the moment of doping, were independent of the actual manganese concentration and the Arrhenius plot for water exchange was linear over the range of 22-42 deg C. A marked increase of the water exchange times values was observed in all studied disease states. In case of chronic hepatitis, diabetes and dyslipidemia the changes observed in transmembrane water exchange time were associated with significant increase in the apparent activation energy of the diffusional water permeability thus, pointing out alterations in the function of the erythrocyte water channel. (author)

  14. Use of human stem cell derived cardiomyocytes to examine sunitinib mediated cardiotoxicity and electrophysiological alterations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cohen, J.D., E-mail: jennifer.cohen@roche.com [Early and Investigative Safety, Nonclinical Safety, Hoffmann-La Roche, 340 Kingsland Street, Nutley, NJ 07110 (United States); Babiarz, J.E., E-mail: joshua.babiarz@roche.com [Early and Investigative Safety, Nonclinical Safety, Hoffmann-La Roche, 340 Kingsland Street, Nutley, NJ 07110 (United States); Abrams, R.M., E-mail: rory.abrams@roche.com [Early and Investigative Safety, Nonclinical Safety, Hoffmann-La Roche, 340 Kingsland Street, Nutley, NJ 07110 (United States); Guo, L., E-mail: liang.guo@roche.com [Early and Investigative Safety, Nonclinical Safety, Hoffmann-La Roche, 340 Kingsland Street, Nutley, NJ 07110 (United States); Kameoka, S., E-mail: sei.kameoka@roche.com [Early and Investigative Safety, Nonclinical Safety, Hoffmann-La Roche, 340 Kingsland Street, Nutley, NJ 07110 (United States); Chiao, E., E-mail: eric.chiao@roche.com [Early and Investigative Safety, Nonclinical Safety, Hoffmann-La Roche, 340 Kingsland Street, Nutley, NJ 07110 (United States); Taunton, J., E-mail: taunton@cmp.ucsf.edu [Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology, University California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94158 (United States); Kolaja, K.L., E-mail: kyle.kolaja@roche.com [Early and Investigative Safety, Nonclinical Safety, Hoffmann-La Roche, 340 Kingsland Street, Nutley, NJ 07110 (United States)

    2011-11-15

    Sunitinib, an oral tyrosine kinase inhibitor approved to treat advanced renal cell carcinoma and gastrointestinal stroma tumor, is associated with clinical cardiac toxicity. Although the precise mechanism of sunitinib cardiotoxicity is not known, both the key metabolic energy regulator, AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), and ribosomal S 6 kinase (RSK) have been hypothesized as causative, albeit based on rodent models. To study the mechanism of sunitinib-mediated cardiotoxicity in a human model, induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (iPSC-CMs) having electrophysiological and contractile properties of native cardiac tissue were investigated. Sunitinib was cardiotoxic in a dose-dependent manner with an IC{sub 50} in the low micromolar range, observed by a loss of cellular ATP, an increase in oxidized glutathione, and induction of apoptosis in iPSC-CMs. Pretreatment of iPSC-CMs with AMPK activators AICAR or metformin, increased the phosphorylation of pAMPK-T172 and pACC-S79, but only marginally attenuated sunitinib mediated cell death. Furthermore, additional inhibitors of AMPK were not directly cytotoxic to iPSC-CMs up to 250 {mu}M concentrations. Inhibition of RSK with a highly specific, irreversible, small molecule inhibitor (RSK-FMK-MEA) did not induce cytotoxicity in iPSC-CMs below 250 {mu}M. Extensive electrophysiological analysis of sunitinib and RSK-FMK-MEA mediated conduction effects were performed. Taken together, these findings suggest that inhibition of AMPK and RSK are not a major component of sunitinib-induced cardiotoxicity. Although the exact mechanism of cardiotoxicity of sunitinib is not known, it is likely due to inhibition of multiple kinases simultaneously. These data highlight the utility of human iPSC-CMs in investigating the potential molecular mechanisms underlying drug-induced cardiotoxicity. -- Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Cytoxic effect of sunitinib on human stem cell derived cardiomyocytes Black

  15. Use of human stem cell derived cardiomyocytes to examine sunitinib mediated cardiotoxicity and electrophysiological alterations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cohen, J.D.; Babiarz, J.E.; Abrams, R.M.; Guo, L.; Kameoka, S.; Chiao, E.; Taunton, J.; Kolaja, K.L.

    2011-01-01

    Sunitinib, an oral tyrosine kinase inhibitor approved to treat advanced renal cell carcinoma and gastrointestinal stroma tumor, is associated with clinical cardiac toxicity. Although the precise mechanism of sunitinib cardiotoxicity is not known, both the key metabolic energy regulator, AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), and ribosomal S 6 kinase (RSK) have been hypothesized as causative, albeit based on rodent models. To study the mechanism of sunitinib-mediated cardiotoxicity in a human model, induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (iPSC-CMs) having electrophysiological and contractile properties of native cardiac tissue were investigated. Sunitinib was cardiotoxic in a dose-dependent manner with an IC 50 in the low micromolar range, observed by a loss of cellular ATP, an increase in oxidized glutathione, and induction of apoptosis in iPSC-CMs. Pretreatment of iPSC-CMs with AMPK activators AICAR or metformin, increased the phosphorylation of pAMPK-T172 and pACC-S79, but only marginally attenuated sunitinib mediated cell death. Furthermore, additional inhibitors of AMPK were not directly cytotoxic to iPSC-CMs up to 250 μM concentrations. Inhibition of RSK with a highly specific, irreversible, small molecule inhibitor (RSK-FMK-MEA) did not induce cytotoxicity in iPSC-CMs below 250 μM. Extensive electrophysiological analysis of sunitinib and RSK-FMK-MEA mediated conduction effects were performed. Taken together, these findings suggest that inhibition of AMPK and RSK are not a major component of sunitinib-induced cardiotoxicity. Although the exact mechanism of cardiotoxicity of sunitinib is not known, it is likely due to inhibition of multiple kinases simultaneously. These data highlight the utility of human iPSC-CMs in investigating the potential molecular mechanisms underlying drug-induced cardiotoxicity. -- Highlights: ► Cytoxic effect of sunitinib on human stem cell derived cardiomyocytes ► Sunitinib causes ATP depletion, LDH release, GSH

  16. A mixed diet supplemented with l-arabinose does not alter glycaemic or insulinaemic responses in healthy human subjects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Halschou-Jensen, Kia; Knudsen, Knud E Bach; Nielsen, Soren

    2015-01-01

    of the present study showed that the peak plasma concentration, time to reach peak plasma concentration or AUC values of glucose, insulin and C-peptide were not altered after consumption of the test meals. Overall, it was not possible to reproduce the beneficial effects of L-arabinose added to sucrose drinks...... effects on postprandial blood glucose, insulin and C-peptide responses in humans. However, the effects of adding L-arabinose to mixed meals on the indices of glucose control are unknown. The purpose of the present study was to investigate whether the positive effects of L-arabinose added to a sugar drink...... could be reproduced in subjects consuming a mixed meal containing sucrose and/or starch from wheat flour. A total of seventeen healthy men participated in study 1, a randomised, double-blind, cross-over trial. In this study, the subjects consumed two different breakfast meals containing sucrose...

  17. Renal cortical and medullary blood flow responses to altered NO-availability in humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Damkjaer, Mads; Vafaee, Manoucher; Møller, Michael Lehd

    2010-01-01

    The objective was to quantify regional renal blood flow in humans. In nine young volunteers on a controlled diet, the lower abdomen was CT-scanned and regional renal blood flow determined by positron emission tomography (PET) scanning using H(2)(15)O as tracer. Measurements were performed...... of one voxel were eliminated stepwise from the external surface of the VOI ('voxel peeling'), and the blood flow subsequently determined in each new, reduced VOI. Blood flow in the shrinking volumes of interest (VOIs) decreased as the number of cycles of voxel peeling increased. After 4-5 cycles, blood...... flow was not reduced further by additional voxel peeling. This volume-insensitive flow was measured to be 2.30 ±0.17 ml·(g·min)(-1) during the control period; it increased during infusion of glyceryl nitrate to 2.97 ±0.18 ml·(g·min)(-1) (p...

  18. Pyrimethamine-induced alterations in human lymphocytes in vitro. Mechanisms and reversal of the effect

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bygbjerg, Ib Christian

    1985-01-01

    It has previously been shown that the antiprotozoal drug pyrimethamine (PYR) in concentrations corresponding to those obtained in clinical practice temporarily suppressed the proliferation of phytohaemagglutinin (PHA-) stimulated human lymphocytes in vitro; 10-fold higher concentrations permanently...... suppressed PHA-stimulated cells, as indicated by decreased numbers of cells and DNA synthesis. In the present study, it was found that the 3H-deoxyuridine incorporation in PHA-stimulated lymphocytes was suppressed by PYR, and that PYR caused defective deoxyuridine suppression of 14C-thymidine incorporation......, reduced thymidylate synthesis cannot be the sole consequence of PYR exposure. It is suggested that an additional folate-dependent factor plays an important role in the antimitotic activity of PYR on lymphocytes....

  19. Neurobiological basis of parenting disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, Louise K; Harris, Melissa; Allen, Joanne

    2011-02-01

    It has been proposed that early attachment relationships shape the structure and reactivity of social brain structures that underlie later social capacities. We provide a review of the literature surrounding the development of neurological regulatory systems during infancy and outline recent research suggesting these systems go on to underlie adaptive parental responses. We review evidence in the peer-reviewed psychiatric literature including (i) observational human literature on the neurobiological and social sequelae of early parenting experiences, (ii) experimental animal literature on the effects of early maternal care on neurological development, (iii) experimental animal literature on the neurobiological underpinnings of parenting behaviours, (iv) observational and fMRI evidence on the neurobiological correlates of parenting behaviours, (v) functional and volumetric imaging studies on adults affected by borderline personality disorder. The development of infant regulatory systems is influenced by early parenting experiences. These frontolimbic regulatory systems are also heavily implicated in normal parental responses to infant cues. These frontolimbic disturbances are also observed in studies of borderline personality disorder; a disorder associated with poor emotional regulation, early trauma and disturbed parenting. While the current literature is limited to animal models of abnormal care giving, existing disorders associated with deficits in regulatory capacity and abnormal frontolimbic functioning may yet provide a human model of the neurobiology of parenting disturbance.

  20. Renal cortical and medullary blood flow responses to altered NO availability in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Damkjær, Mads; Vafaee, Manoucher; Møller, Michael L; Braad, Poul Erik; Petersen, Henrik; Høilund-Carlsen, Poul Flemming; Bie, Peter

    2010-12-01

    The objective of this study was to quantify regional renal blood flow in humans. In nine young volunteers on a controlled diet, the lower abdomen was CT-scanned, and regional renal blood flow was determined by positron emission tomography (PET) scanning using H(2)(15)O as tracer. Measurements were performed at baseline, during constant intravenous infusion of nitric oxide (NO) donor glyceryl nitrate and after intravenous injection of NO synthase inhibitor N(ω)-monomethyl-L-arginine (L-NMMA). Using the CT image, the kidney pole areas were delineated as volumes of interest (VOI). In the data analysis, tissue layers with a thickness of one voxel were eliminated stepwise from the external surface of the VOI (voxel peeling), and the blood flow subsequently was determined in each new, reduced VOI. Blood flow in the shrinking VOIs decreased as the number of cycles of voxel peeling increased. After 4-5 cycles, blood flow was not reduced further by additional voxel peeling. This volume-insensitive flow was measured to be 2.30 ± 0.17 ml·g tissue(-1)·min(-1) during the control period; it increased during infusion of glyceryl nitrate to 2.97 ± 0.18 ml·g tissue(-1)·min(-1) (P blood flow was 4.67 ± 0.31 ml·g tissue(-1)·min(-1) during control, unchanged by glyceryl nitrate, and decreased after L-NMMA [3.48 ± 0.23 ml·(g·min)(-1), P renal medullary region in which the measured blood flow is 1) low, 2) independent of reduction in the VOI, and 3) reactive to changes in systemic NO supply. The technique seems to provide indices of renal medullary blood flow in humans.

  1. Short-term high dose of quercetin and resveratrol alters aging markers in human kidney cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatemeh Abharzanjani

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Hyperglycemia-mediated oxidative stress implicates in etiology of kidney cell aging and diabetic nephropathy. We evaluated the effects of different doses of resveratrol and quercetin and their combination therapy on aging marker in human kidney cell culture under hyperglycemia condition. Methods: Human embryonic kidney cell (HEK-293 was cultured in Dulbecco's Modified Eagle Medium (DMEM containing 100 mM (18 mg/L for 24 h. The cells were treated with resveratrol (2.5, 5, 10 μm, quercetin (3, 6, 12 μm, and combination of these (R 2.5 μm, Q 3 μm and (R 5 μm, Q 6 μm and (R 10 μm, Q 12 μm for 48 h, and then, cells were lysed to access RNA and lysate. Results: The analysis of data showed that beta-galactosidase enzyme gene expression as an aging marker in all treatment groups has reduced in a dose-dependent manner. Gene expression of Sirtuin1 and thioredoxin (Trx in all treated groups in comparison to control group increased in a dose-dependent fashion. Trx interacting protein (TXNIP gene expression decreased in a dose-dependent manner in all treated groups, especially in resveratrol and combination therapy. Conclusions: According to the results of this research, quercetin, resveratrol, and especially combination treatments with increased expression levels of antioxidants, can reduce aging markers in HEK cell line in hyperglycemia conditions. These results lead us to use flavonoids such as resveratrol for anti-aging potential.

  2. Combined facial heating and inhalation of hot air do not alter thermoeffector responses in humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wingo, Jonathan E.; Low, David A.; Keller, David M.; Kimura, Kenichi

    2015-01-01

    The influence of thermoreceptors in human facial skin on thermoeffector responses is equivocal; furthermore, the presence of thermoreceptors in the respiratory tract and their involvement in thermal homeostasis has not been elucidated. This study tested the hypothesis that hot air directed on the face and inhaled during whole body passive heat stress elicits an earlier onset and greater sensitivity of cutaneous vasodilation and sweating than that directed on an equal skin surface area away from the face. Six men and two women completed two trials separated by ∼1 wk. Participants were passively heated (water-perfused suit; core temperature increase ∼0.9°C) while hot air was directed on either the face or on the lower leg (counterbalanced). Skin blood flux (laser-Doppler flowmetry) and local sweat rate (capacitance hygrometry) were measured at the chest and one forearm. During hot-air heating, local temperatures of the cheek and leg were 38.4 ± 0.8°C and 38.8 ± 0.6°C, respectively (P = 0.18). Breathing hot air combined with facial heating did not affect mean body temperature onsets (P = 0.97 and 0.27 for arm and chest sites, respectively) or slopes of cutaneous vasodilation (P = 0.49 and 0.43 for arm and chest sites, respectively), or the onsets (P = 0.89 and 0.94 for arm and chest sites, respectively), or slopes of sweating (P = 0.48 and 0.65 for arm and chest sites, respectively). Based on these findings, respiratory tract thermoreceptors, if present in humans, and selective facial skin heating do not modulate thermoeffector responses during passive heat stress. PMID:26157054

  3. Amphetamine sensitization alters reward processing in the human striatum and amygdala.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Owen G O'Daly

    Full Text Available Dysregulation of mesolimbic dopamine transmission is implicated in a number of psychiatric illnesses characterised by disruption of reward processing and goal-directed behaviour, including schizophrenia, drug addiction and impulse control disorders associated with chronic use of dopamine agonists. Amphetamine sensitization (AS has been proposed to model the development of this aberrant dopamine signalling and the subsequent dysregulation of incentive motivational processes. However, in humans the effects of AS on the dopamine-sensitive neural circuitry associated with reward processing remains unclear. Here we describe the effects of acute amphetamine administration, following a sensitising dosage regime, on blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD signal in dopaminoceptive brain regions during a rewarded gambling task performed by healthy volunteers. Using a randomised, double-blind, parallel-groups design, we found clear evidence for sensitization to the subjective effects of the drug, while rewarded reaction times were unchanged. Repeated amphetamine exposure was associated with reduced dorsal striatal BOLD signal during decision making, but enhanced ventromedial caudate activity during reward anticipation. The amygdala BOLD response to reward outcomes was blunted following repeated amphetamine exposure. Positive correlations between subjective sensitization and changes in anticipation- and outcome-related BOLD signal were seen for the caudate nucleus and amygdala, respectively. These data show for the first time in humans that AS changes the functional impact of acute stimulant exposure on the processing of reward-related information within dopaminoceptive regions. Our findings accord with pathophysiological models which implicate aberrant dopaminergic modulation of striatal and amygdala activity in psychosis and drug-related compulsive disorders.

  4. Ultrasound evidence of altered lumbar connective tissue structure in human subjects with chronic low back pain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bouffard Nicole A

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although the connective tissues forming the fascial planes of the back have been hypothesized to play a role in the pathogenesis of chronic low back pain (LBP, there have been no previous studies quantitatively evaluating connective tissue structure in this condition. The goal of this study was to perform an ultrasound-based comparison of perimuscular connective tissue structure in the lumbar region in a group of human subjects with chronic or recurrent LBP for more than 12 months, compared with a group of subjects without LBP. Methods In each of 107 human subjects (60 with LBP and 47 without LBP, parasagittal ultrasound images were acquired bilaterally centered on a point 2 cm lateral to the midpoint of the L2-3 interspinous ligament. The outcome measures based on these images were subcutaneous and perimuscular connective tissue thickness and echogenicity measured by ultrasound. Results There were no significant differences in age, sex, body mass index (BMI or activity levels between LBP and No-LBP groups. Perimuscular thickness and echogenicity were not correlated with age but were positively correlated with BMI. The LBP group had ~25% greater perimuscular thickness and echogenicity compared with the No-LBP group (ANCOVA adjusted for BMI, p Conclusion This is the first report of abnormal connective tissue structure in the lumbar region in a group of subjects with chronic or recurrent LBP. This finding was not attributable to differences in age, sex, BMI or activity level between groups. Possible causes include genetic factors, abnormal movement patterns and chronic inflammation.

  5. Altered Decorin and Smad Expression in Human Fetal Membranes in PPROM1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horgan, Casie E.; Roumimper, Hailey; Tucker, Richard; Lechner, Beatrice E.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Humans with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, a subtype of which is caused by abnormal decorin expression, are at increased risk of preterm birth due to preterm premature rupture of fetal membranes (PPROM). In the mouse model, the absence of decorin leads to fetal membrane abnormalities, preterm birth, and dysregulation of decorin's downstream pathway components, including the transcription factor p-Smad-2. However, the role of decorin and p-Smad-2 in idiopathic human PPROM is unknown. Fetal membranes from 20–25 pregnancies per group were obtained as a cross-sectional sample of births at one institution between January 2010 and December 2012. The groups were term, preterm without PPROM, and preterm with PPROM. Immunohistochemical analysis of fetal membranes was performed for decorin and p-Smad-2 using localization and quantification assessment. Decorin expression is developmentally regulated in fetal membranes and is decreased in preterm birth with PPROM compared to preterm birth without PPROM. In preterm with PPROM samples, the presence of infection is associated with significant decorin downregulation compared to preterm with PPROM samples without infection. The preterm with PPROM group exhibited decreased p-Smad-2 staining compared to both the term controls and the preterm-without-PPROM group. Our findings suggest that dysregulation of decorin and its downstream pathway component p-Smad-2 occurs in fetal membranes during the second trimester in pathological pregnancies, thus supporting a role for decorin and p-Smad-2 in the pathophysiology of fetal membranes and adverse pregnancy outcomes. These findings may lead to the discovery of new targets for the diagnosis and treatment of PPROM. PMID:25232019

  6. Alteration of canonical and non-canonical WNT-signaling by crystalline silica in human lung epithelial cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perkins, Timothy N.; Dentener, Mieke A.; Stassen, Frank R.; Rohde, Gernot G.; Mossman, Brooke T.; Wouters, Emiel F.M.; Reynaert, Niki L.

    2016-01-01

    Growth and development of the mature lung is a complex process orchestrated by a number of intricate developmental signaling pathways. Wingless-type MMTV-integration site (WNT) signaling plays critical roles in controlling branching morphogenesis cell differentiation, and formation of the conducting and respiratory airways. In addition, WNT pathways are often re-activated in mature lungs during repair and regeneration. WNT- signaling has been elucidated as a crucial contributor to the development of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis as well as other hyper-proliferative lung diseases. Silicosis, a detrimental occupational lung disease caused by excessive inhalation of crystalline silica dust, is hallmarked by repeated cycles of damaging inflammation, epithelial hyperplasia, and formation of dense, hyalinized nodules of whorled collagen. However, mechanisms of epithelial cell hyperplasia and matrix deposition are not well understood, as most research efforts have focused on the pronounced inflammatory response. Microarray data from our previous studies has revealed a number of WNT-signaling and WNT-target genes altered by crystalline silica in human lung epithelial cells. In the present study, we utilize pathway analysis to designate connections between genes altered by silica in WNT-signaling networks. Furthermore, we confirm microarray findings by QRT-PCR and demonstrate both activation of canonical (β-catenin) and down-regulation of non-canonical (WNT5A) signaling in immortalized (BEAS-2B) and primary (PBEC) human bronchial epithelial cells. These findings suggest that WNT-signaling and cross-talk with other pathways (e.g. Notch), may contribute to proliferative, fibrogenic and inflammatory responses to silica in lung epithelial cells. - Highlights: • Pathway analysis reveals silica-induced WNT-signaling in lung epithelial cells. • Silica-induced canonical WNT-signaling is mediated by autocrine/paracrine signals. • Crystalline silica decreases non-canonical WNT

  7. Alteration of canonical and non-canonical WNT-signaling by crystalline silica in human lung epithelial cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perkins, Timothy N.; Dentener, Mieke A. [Department of Respiratory Medicine, Maastricht University Medical Centre +, Maastricht University Maastricht (Netherlands); Stassen, Frank R. [Department of Medical Microbiology, Maastricht University Medical Centre +, Maastricht University Maastricht (Netherlands); Rohde, Gernot G. [Department of Respiratory Medicine, Maastricht University Medical Centre +, Maastricht University Maastricht (Netherlands); Mossman, Brooke T. [Department of Pathology, University of Vermont College of Medicine, Burlington, VT (United States); Wouters, Emiel F.M. [Department of Respiratory Medicine, Maastricht University Medical Centre +, Maastricht University Maastricht (Netherlands); Reynaert, Niki L., E-mail: n.reynaert@maastrichtuniversity.nl [Department of Respiratory Medicine, Maastricht University Medical Centre +, Maastricht University Maastricht (Netherlands)

    2016-06-15

    Growth and development of the mature lung is a complex process orchestrated by a number of intricate developmental signaling pathways. Wingless-type MMTV-integration site (WNT) signaling plays critical roles in controlling branching morphogenesis cell differentiation, and formation of the conducting and respiratory airways. In addition, WNT pathways are often re-activated in mature lungs during repair and regeneration. WNT- signaling has been elucidated as a crucial contributor to the development of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis as well as other hyper-proliferative lung diseases. Silicosis, a detrimental occupational lung disease caused by excessive inhalation of crystalline silica dust, is hallmarked by repeated cycles of damaging inflammation, epithelial hyperplasia, and formation of dense, hyalinized nodules of whorled collagen. However, mechanisms of epithelial cell hyperplasia and matrix deposition are not well understood, as most research efforts have focused on the pronounced inflammatory response. Microarray data from our previous studies has revealed a number of WNT-signaling and WNT-target genes altered by crystalline silica in human lung epithelial cells. In the present study, we utilize pathway analysis to designate connections between genes altered by silica in WNT-signaling networks. Furthermore, we confirm microarray findings by QRT-PCR and demonstrate both activation of canonical (β-catenin) and down-regulation of non-canonical (WNT5A) signaling in immortalized (BEAS-2B) and primary (PBEC) human bronchial epithelial cells. These findings suggest that WNT-signaling and cross-talk with other pathways (e.g. Notch), may contribute to proliferative, fibrogenic and inflammatory responses to silica in lung epithelial cells. - Highlights: • Pathway analysis reveals silica-induced WNT-signaling in lung epithelial cells. • Silica-induced canonical WNT-signaling is mediated by autocrine/paracrine signals. • Crystalline silica decreases non-canonical WNT

  8. Cultured human peripheral blood mononuclear cells alter their gene expression when challenged with endocrine-disrupting chemicals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wens, B.; De Boever, P.; Verbeke, M.; Hollanders, K.; Schoeters, G.

    2013-01-01

    Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) have the potential to interfere with the hormonal system and may negatively influence human health. Microarray analysis was used in this study to investigate differential gene expression in human peripheral blood cells (PBMCs) after in vitro exposure to EDCs. PBMCs, isolated from blood samples of four male and four female healthy individuals, were exposed in vitro for 18 h to either a dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB126, 1 μM), a non-dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB153, 10 μM), a brominated flame retardant (BDE47, 10 μM), a perfluorinated alkyl acid (PFOA, 10 μM) or bisphenol (BPA, 10 μM). ANOVA analysis revealed a significant change in the expression of 862 genes as a result of EDC exposure. The gender of the donors did not affect gene expression. Hierarchical cluster analysis created three groups and clustered: (1) PCB126-exposed samples, (2) PCB153 and BDE47, (3) PFOA and BPA. The number of differentially expressed genes varied per compound and ranged from 60 to 192 when using fold change and multiplicity corrected p-value as filtering criteria. Exposure to PCB126 induced the AhR signaling pathway. BDE47 and PCB153 are known to disrupt thyroid metabolism and exposure influenced the expression of the nuclear receptors PPARγ and ESR2, respectively. BPA and PFOA did not induce significant changes in the expression of known nuclear receptors. Overall, each compound produced a unique gene expression signature affecting pathways and GO processes linked to metabolism and inflammation. Twenty-nine genes were significantly altered in expression under all experimental conditions. Six of these genes (HSD11B2, MMP11, ADIPOQ, CEL, DUSP9 and TUB) could be associated with obesity and metabolic syndrome. In conclusion, microarray analysis identified that PBMCs altered their gene expression response in vitro when challenged with EDCs. Our screening approach has identified a number of gene candidates that warrant

  9. SNPs altering ammonium transport activity of human Rhesus factors characterized by a yeast-based functional assay.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aude Deschuyteneer

    Full Text Available Proteins of the conserved Mep-Amt-Rh family, including mammalian Rhesus factors, mediate transmembrane ammonium transport. Ammonium is an important nitrogen source for the biosynthesis of amino acids but is also a metabolic waste product. Its disposal in urine plays a critical role in the regulation of the acid/base homeostasis, especially with an acid diet, a trait of Western countries. Ammonium accumulation above a certain concentration is however pathologic, the cytotoxicity causing fatal cerebral paralysis in acute cases. Alteration in ammonium transport via human Rh proteins could have clinical outcomes. We used a yeast-based expression assay to characterize human Rh variants resulting from non synonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms (nsSNPs with known or unknown clinical phenotypes and assessed their ammonium transport efficiency, protein level, localization and potential trans-dominant impact. The HsRhAG variants (I61R, F65S associated to overhydrated hereditary stomatocytosis (OHSt, a disease affecting erythrocytes, proved affected in intrinsic bidirectional ammonium transport. Moreover, this study reveals that the R202C variant of HsRhCG, the orthologue of mouse MmRhcg required for optimal urinary ammonium excretion and blood pH control, shows an impaired inherent ammonium transport activity. Urinary ammonium excretion was RHcg gene-dose dependent in mouse, highlighting MmRhcg as a limiting factor. HsRhCG(R202C may confer susceptibility to disorders leading to metabolic acidosis for instance. Finally, the analogous R211C mutation in the yeast ScMep2 homologue also impaired intrinsic activity consistent with a conserved functional role of the preserved arginine residue. The yeast expression assay used here constitutes an inexpensive, fast and easy tool to screen nsSNPs reported by high throughput sequencing or individual cases for functional alterations in Rh factors revealing potential causal variants.

  10. Casticin induced apoptotic cell death and altered associated gene expression in human colon cancer colo 205 cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Hung-Sheng; Liu, Jia-You; Lu, Hsu-Feng; Chiang, Han-Sun; Lin, Chia-Hain; Chen, Ann; Lin, Yuh-Feng; Chung, Jing-Gung

    2017-08-01

    Casticin, a polymethoxyflavone, derived from natural plant Fructus Viticis exhibits biological activities including anti-cancer characteristics. The anti-cancer and alter gene expression of casticin on human colon cancer cells and the underlying mechanisms were investigated. Flow cytometric assay was used to measure viable cell, cell cycle and sub-G1 phase, reactive oxygen species (ROS) and Ca 2+ productions, level of mitochondria membrane potential (ΔΨ m ) and caspase activity. Western blotting assay was used to detect expression of protein level associated with cell death. Casticin induced cell morphological changes, decreased cell viability and induced G2/M phase arrest in colo 205 cells. Casticin increased ROS production but decreased the levels of ΔΨ m , and Ca 2+ , increased caspase-3, -8, and -9 activities. The cDNA microarray indicated that some of the cell cycle associated genes were down-regulated such as cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1A (CDKN1A) (p21, Cip1) and p21 protein (Cdc42/Rac)-activated kinase 3 (PAK3). TNF receptor-associated protein 1 (TRAP1), CREB1 (cAMP responsive element binding protein 1) and cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1B (CDKN1B) (p27, Kip1) genes were increased but matrix metallopeptidase 2 (MMP-2), toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), PRKAR2B (protein kinase, cAMP-dependent, regulatory, type II, bet), and CaMK4 (calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase IV) genes were inhibited. Results suggest that casticin induced cell apoptosis via the activation of the caspase- and/or mitochondria-dependent signaling cascade, the accumulation of ROS and altered associated gene expressions in colo 205 human colon cancer cells. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Robust adaptive control modeling of human arm movements subject to altered gravity and mechanical loads

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tryfonidis, Michail

    It has been observed that during orbital spaceflight the absence of gravitation related sensory inputs causes incongruence between the expected and the actual sensory feedback resulting from voluntary movements. This incongruence results in a reinterpretation or neglect of gravity-induced sensory input signals. Over time, new internal models develop, gradually compensating for the loss of spatial reference. The study of adaptation of goal-directed movements is the main focus of this thesis. The hypothesis is that during the adaptive learning process the neural connections behave in ways that can be described by an adaptive control method. The investigation presented in this thesis includes two different sets of experiments. A series of dart throwing experiments took place onboard the space station Mir. Experiments also took place at the Biomechanics lab at MIT, where the subjects performed a series of continuous trajectory tracking movements while a planar robotic manipulandum exerted external torques on the subjects' moving arms. The experimental hypothesis for both experiments is that during the first few trials the subjects will perform poorly trying to follow a prescribed trajectory, or trying to hit a target. A theoretical framework is developed that is a modification of the sliding control method used in robotics. The new control framework is an attempt to explain the adaptive behavior of the subjects. Numerical simulations of the proposed framework are compared with experimental results and predictions from competitive models. The proposed control methodology extends the results of the sliding mode theory to human motor control. The resulting adaptive control model of the motor system is robust to external dynamics, even those of negative gain, uses only position and velocity feedback, and achieves bounded steady-state error without explicit knowledge of the system's nonlinearities. In addition, the experimental and modeling results demonstrate that

  12. Shoes alter the spring-like function of the human foot during running

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Luke A.; Lichtwark, Glen A.; Farris, Dominic J.; Cresswell, Andrew

    2016-01-01

    The capacity to store and return energy in legs and feet that behave like springs is crucial to human running economy. Recent comparisons of shod and barefoot running have led to suggestions that modern running shoes may actually impede leg and foot-spring function by reducing the contributions from the leg and foot musculature. Here we examined the effect of running shoes on foot longitudinal arch (LA) motion and activation of the intrinsic foot muscles. Participants ran on a force-instrumented treadmill with and without running shoes. We recorded foot kinematics and muscle activation of the intrinsic foot muscles using intramuscular electromyography. In contrast to previous assertions, we observed an increase in both the peak (flexor digitorum brevis +60%) and total stance muscle activation (flexor digitorum brevis +70% and abductor hallucis +53%) of the intrinsic foot muscles when running with shoes. Increased intrinsic muscle activation corresponded with a reduction in LA compression (−25%). We confirm that running shoes do indeed influence the mechanical function of the foot. However, our findings suggest that these mechanical adjustments are likely to have occurred as a result of increased neuromuscular output, rather than impaired control as previously speculated. We propose a theoretical model for foot–shoe interaction to explain these novel findings. PMID:27307512

  13. Transcriptional and Cell Cycle Alterations Mark Aging of Primary Human Adipose-Derived Stem Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shan, Xiaoyin; Roberts, Cleresa; Kim, Eun Ji; Brenner, Ariana; Grant, Gregory; Percec, Ivona

    2017-05-01

    Adult stem cells play a critical role in the maintenance of tissue homeostasis and prevention of aging. While the regenerative potential of stem cells with low cellular turnover, such as adipose-derived stem cells (ASCs), is increasingly recognized, the study of chronological aging in ASCs is technically difficult and remains poorly understood. Here, we use our model of chronological aging in primary human ASCs to examine genome-wide transcriptional networks. We demonstrate first that the transcriptome of aging ASCs is distinctly more stable than that of age-matched fibroblasts, and further, that age-dependent modifications in cell cycle progression and translation initiation specifically characterize aging ASCs in conjunction with increased nascent protein synthesis and a distinctly shortened G1 phase. Our results reveal novel chronological aging mechanisms in ASCs that are inherently different from differentiated cells and that may reflect an organismal attempt to meet the increased demands of tissue and organ homeostasis during aging. Stem Cells 2017;35:1392-1401. © 2017 AlphaMed Press.

  14. Data on environmentally relevant level of aflatoxin B1-induced human dendritic cells' functional alteration

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    Jalil Mehrzad

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available We assessed the effects of naturally occurring levels of AFB1 on the expression of key immune molecules and function of human monocyte-derived dendritic cells (MDDCs by cell culture, RT-qPCR, and flow cytometry. Data here revealed that an environmentally relevant level of AFB1 led to remarkably weakened key functional capacity of DCs, up-regulation of key transcripts and DCs apoptosis, down-regulation of key phagocytic element, CD64, and creation of pseudolicensing direction of DCs. Flow cytometry data confirmed a damage towards DCs, i.e., increased apoptosis. The detailed data and their mechanistic effects and the outcome are available in this research article (Mehrzad et al., 2018 [1]. The impaired phagocytosis capacity with triggered pseudolicensing direction of MDDCs caused by AFB1 and dysregulation of the key functional genes could provide a mechanistic explanation for the observed in vivo immunotoxicity associated with this mycotoxin. Keywords: AFB1, Apoptosis, AFB1-detoxifying genes, Dendritic cells, Flow cytometry, Functional genes, Immunnoderegulation, Phagocytosis, RT-qPCR

  15. Association of human papillomavirus and Chlamydia trachomatis with intraepithelial alterations in cervix samples

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    Denise Wohlmeister

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The influence of different infectious agents and their association with human papillomavirus (HPV in cervical carcinogenesis have not been completely elucidated. This study describes the association between cytological changes in cervical epithelium and the detection of the most relevant aetiological agents of sexually transmitted diseases. Samples collected from 169 patients were evaluated by conventional cytology followed by molecular analysis to detect HPV DNA, Chlamydia trachomatis, herpes simplex virus 1 and 2,Neisseria gonorrhoeae, Mycoplasma genitalium, Trichomonas vaginalis, andTreponema pallidum, besides genotyping for most common high-risk HPV. An association between cytological lesions and different behavioural habits such as smoking and sedentariness was observed. Intraepithelial lesions were also associated with HPV and C. trachomatis detection. An association was also found between both simple and multiple genotype infection and cytological changes. The investigation of HPV and C. trachomatisproved its importance and may be considered in the future for including in screening programs, since these factors are linked to the early diagnosis of patients with precursor lesions of cervical cancer.

  16. Female Aging Alters Expression of Human Cumulus Cells Genes that Are Essential for Oocyte Quality

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    Tamadir Al-Edani

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Impact of female aging is an important issue in human reproduction. There was a need for an extensive analysis of age impact on transcriptome profile of cumulus cells (CCs to link oocyte quality and developmental potential with patient’s age. CCs from patients of three age groups were analyzed individually using microarrays. RT-qPCR validation was performed on independent CC cohorts. We focused here on pathways affected by aging in CCs that may explain the decline of oocyte quality with age. In CCs collected from patients >37 years, angiogenic genes including ANGPTL4, LEPR, TGFBR3, and FGF2 were significantly overexpressed compared to patients of the two younger groups. In contrast genes implicated in TGF-β signaling pathway such as AMH, TGFB1, inhibin, and activin receptor were underexpressed. CCs from patients whose ages are between 31 and 36 years showed an overexpression of genes related to insulin signaling pathway such as IGFBP3, PIK3R1, and IGFBP5. A bioinformatic analysis was performed to identify the microRNAs that are potential regulators of the differentially expressed genes of the study. It revealed that the pathways impacted by age were potential targets of specific miRNAs previously identified in our CCs small RNAs sequencing.

  17. A vegan or vegetarian diet substantially alters the human colonic faecal microbiota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmer, J; Lange, B; Frick, J-S; Sauer, H; Zimmermann, K; Schwiertz, A; Rusch, K; Klosterhalfen, S; Enck, P

    2012-01-01

    Consisting of ≈10(14) microbial cells, the intestinal microbiota represents the largest and the most complex microbial community inhabiting the human body. However, the influence of regular diets on the microbiota is widely unknown. We examined faecal samples of vegetarians (n=144), vegans (n=105) and an equal number of control subjects consuming ordinary omnivorous diet who were matched for age and gender. We used classical bacteriological isolation, identification and enumeration of the main anaerobic and aerobic bacterial genera and computed absolute and relative numbers that were compared between groups. Total counts of Bacteroides spp., Bifidobacterium spp., Escherichia coli and Enterobacteriaceae spp. were significantly lower (P=0.001, P=0.002, P=0.006 and P=0.008, respectively) in vegan samples than in controls, whereas others (E. coli biovars, Klebsiella spp., Enterobacter spp., other Enterobacteriaceae, Enterococcus spp., Lactobacillus spp., Citrobacter spp. and Clostridium spp.) were not. Subjects on a vegetarian diet ranked between vegans and controls. The total microbial count did not differ between the groups. In addition, subjects on a vegan or vegetarian diet showed significantly (P=0.0001) lower stool pH than did controls, and stool pH and counts of E. coli and Enterobacteriaceae were significantly correlated across all subgroups. Maintaining a strict vegan or vegetarian diet results in a significant shift in the microbiota while total cell numbers remain unaltered.

  18. Alteration of metabolomic profiles by titanium dioxide nanoparticles in human gingivitis model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Contreras, Rene; Sugimoto, Masahiro; Umemura, Naoki; Kaneko, Miku; Hatakeyama, Yoko; Soga, Tomoyoshi; Tomita, Masaru; Scougall-Vilchis, Rogelio J; Contreras-Bulnes, Rosalia; Nakajima, Hiroshi; Sakagami, Hiroshi

    2015-07-01

    Although nanoparticles (NPs) has afforded considerable benefits in various fields of sciences, several reports have shown their harmful effects, suggesting the necessity of adequate risk assessment. To clarify the mechanism of titanium dioxide nanoparticles (TiO2 NPs)-enhanced gingival inflammation, we conducted the full-scale metabolomic analyses of human gingival fibroblast cells treated with IL-1β alone or in combination with TiO2 NPs. Observation with transmission electron microscope demonstrated the incorporation of TiO2 NPs into vacuoles of the cells. TiO2 NPs significantly enhanced the IL-1β-induced prostaglandin E2 production and COX-1 and COX-2 protein expression. IL-1β reduced the intracellular concentrations of overall primary metabolites especially those of amino acid, urea cycle, polyamine, S-adenosylmethione and glutathione synthetic pathways. The addition of TiO2 NPs further augmented these IL-1β-induced metabolic changes, recommending careful use of dental materials containing TiO2 NPs towards patients with gingivitis or periodontitis. The impact of the present study is to identify the molecular targets of TiO2 NPs for the future establishment of new metabolic markers and therapeutic strategy of gingival inflammation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. ALTERATION OF TASTE BUDS IN EXPERIMENTAL CIRRHOSIS. Is there correlation with human hypogeusia?

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    Sabrina Alves FERNANDES

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Background The inherent complications of cirrhosis include protein-calorie malnutrition and micronutrient deficiencies.Changes in taste are detrimental to the nutritional status, and the mechanism to explain these changes is not well documented in the cirrhotic patients. Objective To evaluate the taste buds of cirrhotic rats. Methods Fourteen male Wistar rats were evaluated. After 16 weeks, the liver was removed to histologically diagnose cirrhosis, and blood was collected to perform liver integrity tests. The tongue was removed for histological examination and immunohistochemistry using antibodies against protein gene product PGP 9.5 and the sweet taste receptors T1R2 and T1R3. Morphological changes were determined by scanning electron microscopy. Serum zinc levels were measured. Results The cirrhotic animals, but not the control animals, exhibited zinc deficiency. In both groups, there was positive immunoreactivity for type II and III cells and T1R2 receptors. The cirrhotic animals had no immunoreactivity for T1R3 receptors. Scanning electron microscopy analysis of the cirrhotic group revealed a uniform tapering of the gustatory papillae. Conclusion In conclusion the experimental cirrhosis model mimicked the biochemical and histological parameters of human cirrhosis, therefore enabling a study of the gustatory papillae and taste buds.

  20. Functional alterations of human platelets following indium-111 labelling using different incubation media and labelling agents

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Isaka, Yoshinari; Imaizumi, Masatoshi; Kimura, Kazufumi; Matsumoto, Masayasu; Kamada, Takenobu

    1991-01-01

    Human platelets were labelled in the absence of presence of plasma using 111 In-labelled oxine sulphate, tropolone or 2-mercaptopyridine-N-oxide (MPO). Under in vitro and in vivo conditions, platelet functions were evaluated by measuring their aggregability, survival, recovery and early distribution. High labelling efficiency was achieved in saline labelling, whereas with plasma labelling, it was necessary to concentrate the platelet-rich plasma to 4.8x10 6 platelets/μl. The aggregation of platelets labelled in plasma or saline was compared with that of controls; platelets labelled in saline showed lower aggregability in 2 μM ADP but not in 5 μM ADP nor with collagen. No significant differences in platelet survival and recovery were noted between platelets labelled in plasma and those labelled in saline. Our results indicate that partial loss of ADP aggregability in vitro does not influence the in vivo viability of platelets labelled in saline. Scintigraphic studies showed that platelets labelled in a saline medium were temporarily sequestrated in the liver but not in the spleen or heart. Thus, platelet labelling in saline does not affect platelet function adversely, but platelets labelled in plasma are more desirable for assessing the early distribution of platelets in the reticuloendothelial system. (orig.)

  1. Altered Gene Transcription in Human Cells Treated with Ludox® Silica Nanoparticles

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    Caterina Fede

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Silica (SiO2 nanoparticles (NPs have found extensive applications in industrial manufacturing, biomedical and biotechnological fields. Therefore, the increasing exposure to such ultrafine particles requires studies to characterize their potential cytotoxic effects in order to provide exhaustive information to assess the impact of nanomaterials on human health. The understanding of the biological processes involved in the development and maintenance of a variety of pathologies is improved by genome-wide approaches, and in this context, gene set analysis has emerged as a fundamental tool for the interpretation of the results. In this work we show how the use of a combination of gene-by-gene and gene set analyses can enhance the interpretation of results of in vitro treatment of A549 cells with Ludox® colloidal amorphous silica nanoparticles. By gene-by-gene and gene set analyses, we evidenced a specific cell response in relation to NPs size and elapsed time after treatment, with the smaller NPs (SM30 having higher impact on inflammatory and apoptosis processes than the bigger ones. Apoptotic process appeared to be activated by the up-regulation of the initiator genes TNFa and IL1b and by ATM. Moreover, our analyses evidenced that cell treatment with LudoxÒ silica nanoparticles activated the matrix metalloproteinase genes MMP1, MMP10 and MMP9. The information derived from this study can be informative about the cytotoxicity of Ludox® and other similar colloidal amorphous silica NPs prepared by solution processes.

  2. Deletion of DXZ4 on the human inactive X chromosome alters higher-order genome architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darrow, Emily M; Huntley, Miriam H; Dudchenko, Olga; Stamenova, Elena K; Durand, Neva C; Sun, Zhuo; Huang, Su-Chen; Sanborn, Adrian L; Machol, Ido; Shamim, Muhammad; Seberg, Andrew P; Lander, Eric S; Chadwick, Brian P; Aiden, Erez Lieberman

    2016-08-02

    During interphase, the inactive X chromosome (Xi) is largely transcriptionally silent and adopts an unusual 3D configuration known as the "Barr body." Despite the importance of X chromosome inactivation, little is known about this 3D conformation. We recently showed that in humans the Xi chromosome exhibits three structural features, two of which are not shared by other chromosomes. First, like the chromosomes of many species, Xi forms compartments. Second, Xi is partitioned into two huge intervals, called "superdomains," such that pairs of loci in the same superdomain tend to colocalize. The boundary between the superdomains lies near DXZ4, a macrosatellite repeat whose Xi allele extensively binds the protein CCCTC-binding factor. Third, Xi exhibits extremely large loops, up to 77 megabases long, called "superloops." DXZ4 lies at the anchor of several superloops. Here, we combine 3D mapping, microscopy, and genome editing to study the structure of Xi, focusing on the role of DXZ4 We show that superloops and superdomains are conserved across eutherian mammals. By analyzing ligation events involving three or more loci, we demonstrate that DXZ4 and other superloop anchors tend to colocate simultaneously. Finally, we show that deleting DXZ4 on Xi leads to the disappearance of superdomains and superloops, changes in compartmentalization patterns, and changes in the distribution of chromatin marks. Thus, DXZ4 is essential for proper Xi packaging.

  3. Alteration of microRNA expression of human dental pulp cells during odontogenic differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Qimei; Wang, Runfu; Jiang, Hongwei; Lin, Zhengmei; Ling, Junqi

    2012-10-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play momentous roles in various biological processes including cell differentiation. However, little is known about the role of miRNAs in human dental pulp cells (hDPCs) during odontogenic differentiation. The aims of this study were to investigate the expression of miRNAs in the primary culture of hDPCs when incubated in odontogenic medium. The potential characteristics of hDPCs were investigated by miRNA microarray and real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction. Bioinformatics (ie, target prediction, Gene Ontology analysis, and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes mapping tools) were applied for predicting the complementary target genes of miRNAs and their biological functions. A total of 22 miRNAs were differentially expressed in which 12 miRNAs up-regulated and 10 miRNAs down-regulated in differentiated hDPCs compared with the control. The target genes of differential miRNAs were predicted to associate with several biological functions and signaling pathways including the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and the Wnt signaling pathway. The differential expression miRNAs may be involved in governing hDPC odontogenic differentiation, thus contributing to the future investigations of regulatory mechanisms in reparative dentin formation and dental pulp regeneration. Copyright © 2012 American Association of Endodontists. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. ALTERATION OF TASTE BUDS IN EXPERIMENTAL CIRRHOSIS. Is there correlation with human hypogeusia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandes, Sabrina Alves; Bona, Silvia; Cerski, Carlos Thadeu Schmidt; Marroni, Norma Possa; Marroni, Claudio Augusto

    2016-01-01

    The inherent complications of cirrhosis include protein-calorie malnutrition and micronutrient deficiencies.Changes in taste are detrimental to the nutritional status, and the mechanism to explain these changes is not well documented in the cirrhotic patients. To evaluate the taste buds of cirrhotic rats. Fourteen male Wistar rats were evaluated. After 16 weeks, the liver was removed to histologically diagnose cirrhosis, and blood was collected to perform liver integrity tests. The tongue was removed for histological examination and immunohistochemistry using antibodies against protein gene product PGP 9.5 and the sweet taste receptors T1R2 and T1R3. Morphological changes were determined by scanning electron microscopy. Serum zinc levels were measured. The cirrhotic animals, but not the control animals, exhibited zinc deficiency. In both groups, there was positive immunoreactivity for type II and III cells and T1R2 receptors. The cirrhotic animals had no immunoreactivity for T1R3 receptors. Scanning electron microscopy analysis of the cirrhotic group revealed a uniform tapering of the gustatory papillae. In conclusion the experimental cirrhosis model mimicked the biochemical and histological parameters of human cirrhosis, therefore enabling a study of the gustatory papillae and taste buds.

  5. Esmolol acutely alters oxygen supply-demand balance in exercising muscles of healthy humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proctor, David N; Luck, J Carter; Maman, Stephan R; Leuenberger, Urs A; Muller, Matthew D

    2018-04-01

    Beta-adrenoreceptor antagonists (β blockers) reduce systemic O 2 delivery and blood pressure (BP) during exercise, but the subsequent effects on O 2 extraction within the active limb muscles are unknown. In this study, we examined the effects of the fast-acting, β 1 selective blocker esmolol on systemic hemodynamics and leg muscle O 2 saturation (near infrared spectroscopy, NIRS) during submaximal leg ergometry. Our main hypothesis was that esmolol would augment exercise-induced reductions in leg muscle O 2 saturation. Eight healthy adults (6 men, 2 women; 23-67 year) performed light and moderate intensity bouts of recumbent leg cycling before (PRE), during (β 1 -blocked), and 45 min following (POST) intravenous infusion of esmolol. Oxygen uptake, heart rate (HR), BP, and O 2 saturation (SmO 2 ) of the vastus lateralis (VL) and medial gastrocnemius (MG) muscles were measured continuously. Esmolol attenuated the increases in HR and systolic BP during light (-12 ± 9 bpm and -26 ± 12 mmHg vs. PRE) and moderate intensity (-20 ± 10 bpm and -40 ± 18 mmHg vs. PRE) cycling (all P Exercise-induced reductions in SmO 2 occurred to a greater extent during the β 1 -blockade trial in both the VL (P = 0.001 vs. PRE) and MG muscles (P = 0.022 vs. PRE). HR, SBP and SmO 2 were restored during POST (all P exercising muscles of healthy humans. © 2018 The Authors. Physiological Reports published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of The Physiological Society and the American Physiological Society.

  6. Role of cyclooxygenase isoforms in the altered excitatory motor pathways of human colon with diverticular disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fornai, M; Colucci, R; Antonioli, L; Ippolito, C; Segnani, C; Buccianti, P; Marioni, A; Chiarugi, M; Villanacci, V; Bassotti, G; Blandizzi, C; Bernardini, N

    2014-08-01

    The COX isoforms (COX-1, COX-2) regulate human gut motility, although their role under pathological conditions remains unclear. This study examines the effects of COX inhibitors on excitatory motility in colonic tissue from patients with diverticular disease (DD). Longitudinal muscle preparations, from patients with DD or uncomplicated cancer (controls), were set up in organ baths and connected to isotonic transducers. Indomethacin (COX-1/COX-2 inhibitor), SC-560 (COX-1 inhibitor) or DFU (COX-2 inhibitor) were assayed on electrically evoked, neurogenic, cholinergic and tachykininergic contractions, or carbachol- and substance P (SP)-induced myogenic contractions. Distribution and expression of COX isoforms in the neuromuscular compartment were assessed by RT-PCR, Western blot and immunohistochemical analysis. In control preparations, neurogenic cholinergic contractions were enhanced by COX inhibitors, whereas tachykininergic responses were blunted. Carbachol-evoked contractions were increased by indomethacin or SC-560, but not DFU, whereas all inhibitors reduced SP-induced motor responses. In preparations from DD patients, COX inhibitors did not affect electrically evoked cholinergic contractions. Both indomethacin and DFU, but not SC-560, decreased tachykininergic responses. COX inhibitors did not modify carbachol-evoked motor responses, whereas they counteracted SP-induced contractions. COX-1 expression was decreased in myenteric neurons, whereas COX-2 was enhanced in glial cells and smooth muscle. In control colon, COX-1 and COX-2 down-regulate cholinergic motility, whereas both isoforms enhance tachykininergic motor activity. In the presence of DD, there is a loss of modulation by both COX isoforms on the cholinergic system, whereas COX-2 displays an enhanced facilitatory control on tachykininergic contractile activity. © 2014 The British Pharmacological Society.

  7. Microarray analysis of gene expression alteration in human middle ear epithelial cells induced by micro particle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Jae-Jun; Kwon, Jee Young; Park, Moo Kyun; Seo, Young Rok

    2013-10-01

    The primary aim of this study is to reveal the effect of particulate matter (PM) on the human middle ear epithelial cell (HMEEC). The HMEEC was treated with PM (300 μg/ml) for 24 h. Total RNA was extracted and used for microarray analysis. Molecular pathways among differentially expressed genes were further analyzed by using Pathway Studio 9.0 software. For selected genes, the changes in gene expression were confirmed by real-time PCR. A total of 611 genes were regulated by PM. Among them, 366 genes were up-regulated, whereas 245 genes were down-regulated. Up-regulated genes were mainly involved in cellular processes, including reactive oxygen species generation, cell proliferation, apoptosis, cell differentiation, inflammatory response and immune response. Down-regulated genes affected several cellular processes, including cell differentiation, cell cycle, proliferation, apoptosis and cell migration. A total of 21 genes were discovered as crucial components in potential signaling networks containing 2-fold up regulated genes. Four genes, VEGFA, IL1B, CSF2 and HMOX1 were revealed as key mediator genes among the up-regulated genes. A total of 25 genes were revealed as key modulators in the signaling pathway associated with 2-fold down regulated genes. Four genes, including IGF1R, TIMP1, IL6 and FN1, were identified as the main modulator genes. We identified the differentially expressed genes in PM-treated HMEEC, whose expression profile may provide a useful clue for the understanding of environmental pathophysiology of otitis media. Our work indicates that air pollution, like PM, plays an important role in the pathogenesis of otitis media. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Association of a Human FABP1 Gene Promoter Region Polymorphism with Altered Serum Triglyceride Levels.

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    Xian-E Peng

    Full Text Available Liver fatty acid-binding protein (L-FABP, also known as fatty acid-binding protein 1 (FABP1, is a key regulator of hepatic lipid metabolism. Elevated FABP1 levels are associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD and metabolic syndromes. In this study, we examine the association of FABP1 gene promoter variants with serum FABP1 and lipid levels in a Chinese population. Four promoter single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs of FABP1 gene were genotyped in a cross-sectional survey of healthy volunteers (n = 1,182 from Fuzhou city of China. Results showed that only the rs2919872 G>A variant was significantly associated with serum TG concentration(P = 0.032.Compared with the rs2919872 G allele, rs2919872 A allele contributed significantly to reduced serum TG concentration, and this allele dramatically decreased the FABP1 promoter activity(P < 0.05. The rs2919872 A allele carriers had considerably lower serum FABP1 levels than G allele carriers (P < 0.01. In the multivariable linear regression analysis, the rs2919872 A allele was negatively associated with serum FABP1 levels (β = -0.320, P = 0.003, while serum TG levels were positively associated with serum FABP1 levels (β = 0.487, P = 0.014. Our data suggest that compared with the rs2919872 G allele, the rs2919872 A allele reduces the transcriptional activity of FABP1 promoter, and thereby may link FABP1 gene variation to TG level in humans.

  9. Bladder-like graphical representation of p53 gene alterations in some human cancers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Helal, N.L.; Dorrah, M.; LI, C.

    2005-01-01

    the p53 tumor suppressor gene is mutated in about half of all human cancer cells. These mutations are not only important in tumor progression but apparently also in the response of some tumors to chemotherapy and radiation treatment, thus to clinical outcome. Recent studies have shown that cells carrying p53 mutations are more resistant to radiation and chemotherapy than cells with functional p53. More than 15000 tumors with Tp53 mutations were published, leadingto the description of more than 1500 different Tp53 mutants (at the site http:// p53. curie.fr). To exploit this huge bulk of data, specific analytic tools were highly warranted. Also, new computational techniques for rapid determination of such information and comparative studies of different mutations are required. In the present study, a mathematical method for the IARC library p53 mutation database comparing p53 mutations occurring in four different cancers was described. The sizes of the four cancers in the database were bladder (860), liver (786), brain (1170) and skin (38) cancers, for a total of 2854 of p53 mutations. The study was carried out on exons 4-8 of p53 for the four cancers under investigation. From this study, it can be quantitatively obtained some information for each characteristic sequence. The data showed that exon 8 was the most mutant exon in skin cancer and exon 7 was the lowest one. In hepatocellular carcinoma, exon 4 was the most mutant exon and exon 7 was the lowest mutant exon. Brain cancer showed high mutation in exon 8 and low mutation at exon 6. Finally, bladder mutation was mostly mutated at exon 6 comparing to the least value of exon 7. It is expected that this study of p53 mutation may provide useful information for the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of cancer

  10. Taxonomic and trait based recolonization dynamics of a riverine fish assemblage following a large scale human mediated disturbance: the red mud disaster in Hungary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tibor Eros

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available We examined the recovery of a fish assemblage following the catastrophic spill of highly alkaline (pH~13 red sludge into a lowland river (i to characterize taxonomic and trait based colonization of fishes in the river in the first three years of the recovery, and (ii to determine which structural and trait based variables best predicted colonization. Species richness showed comparable values to pre-disturbance state less than one year after the spill. We found only moderate changes in the dominance of the most abundant species between pre- and post-disturbance periods, and consistent changes in the relative abundance of some rare species during the post-disturbance period. Frequency of occurrence (% of the fishes in the watershed, and their relative abundance (% proved to be the most important predictor variables in colonization, whereas trait based variables had a less important role. Our study about one of the largest scale and most serious documented fish kill shows that both taxonomic and trait based structure of fish assemblages can regenerate remarkable fast in a modified river and also shows that unfortunate chemical spills provide insights into the assembly of stream fish assemblages.

  11. Altered calcium handling and increased contraction force in human embryonic stem cell derived cardiomyocytes following short term dexamethasone exposure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kosmidis, Georgios; Bellin, Milena; Ribeiro, Marcelo C.; Meer, Berend van; Ward-van Oostwaard, Dorien [Department of Anatomy and Embryology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden (Netherlands); Passier, Robert [Department of Anatomy and Embryology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden (Netherlands); MIRA, University of Twente (Netherlands); Tertoolen, Leon G.J.; Mummery, Christine L. [Department of Anatomy and Embryology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden (Netherlands); Casini, Simona, E-mail: s.casini@amc.uva.nl [Department of Anatomy and Embryology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden (Netherlands)

    2015-11-27

    One limitation in using human pluripotent stem cell derived cardiomyocytes (hPSC-CMs) for disease modeling and cardiac safety pharmacology is their immature functional phenotype compared with adult cardiomyocytes. Here, we report that treatment of human embryonic stem cell derived cardiomyocytes (hESC-CMs) with dexamethasone, a synthetic glucocorticoid, activated glucocorticoid signaling which in turn improved their calcium handling properties and contractility. L-type calcium current and action potential properties were not affected by dexamethasone but significantly faster calcium decay, increased forces of contraction and sarcomeric lengths, were observed in hESC-CMs after dexamethasone exposure. Activating the glucocorticoid pathway can thus contribute to mediating hPSC-CMs maturation. - Highlights: • Dexamethasone accelerates Ca{sup 2+} transient decay in hESC-CMs. • Dexamethasone enhances SERCA and NCX function in hESC-CMs. • Dexamethasone increases force of contraction and sarcomere length in hESC-CMs. • Dexamethasone does not alter I{sub Ca,L} and action potential characteristics in hESC-CMs.

  12. The Effects of Trauma, with or without PTSD, on the Transgenerational DNA Methylation Alterations in Human Offsprings

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    Nagy A. Youssef

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Exposure to psychological trauma is a strong risk factor for several debilitating disorders including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD and depression. Besides the impact on mental well-being and behavior in the exposed individuals, it has been suggested that psychological trauma can affect the biology of the individuals, and even have biological and behavioral consequences on the offspring of exposed individuals. While knowledge of possible epigenetic underpinnings of the association between exposure to trauma and risk of PTSD has been discussed in several reviews, it remains to be established whether trauma-induced epigenetic modifications can be passed from traumatized individuals to subsequent generations of offspring. The aim of this paper is to review the emerging literature on evidence of transgenerational inheritance due to trauma exposure on the epigenetic mechanism of DNA methylation in humans. Our review found an accumulating amount of evidence of an enduring effect of trauma exposure to be passed to offspring transgenerationally via the epigenetic inheritance mechanism of DNA methylation alterations and has the capacity to change the expression of genes and the metabolome. This manuscript summarizes and critically reviews the relevant original human studies in this area. Thus, it provides an overview of where we stand, and a clearer vision of where we should go in terms of future research directions.

  13. The Effects of Trauma, with or without PTSD, on the Transgenerational DNA Methylation Alterations in Human Offsprings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Youssef, Nagy A; Lockwood, Laura; Su, Shaoyong; Hao, Guang; Rutten, Bart P F

    2018-05-08

    Exposure to psychological trauma is a strong risk factor for several debilitating disorders including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression. Besides the impact on mental well-being and behavior in the exposed individuals, it has been suggested that psychological trauma can affect the biology of the individuals, and even have biological and behavioral consequences on the offspring of exposed individuals. While knowledge of possible epigenetic underpinnings of the association between exposure to trauma and risk of PTSD has been discussed in several reviews, it remains to be established whether trauma-induced epigenetic modifications can be passed from traumatized individuals to subsequent generations of offspring. The aim of this paper is to review the emerging literature on evidence of transgenerational inheritance due to trauma exposure on the epigenetic mechanism of DNA methylation in humans. Our review found an accumulating amount of evidence of an enduring effect of trauma exposure to be passed to offspring transgenerationally via the epigenetic inheritance mechanism of DNA methylation alterations and has the capacity to change the expression of genes and the metabolome. This manuscript summarizes and critically reviews the relevant original human studies in this area. Thus, it provides an overview of where we stand, and a clearer vision of where we should go in terms of future research directions.

  14. Defects in the CAPN1 Gene Result in Alterations in Cerebellar Development and Cerebellar Ataxia in Mice and Humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yubin Wang

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available A CAPN1 missense mutation in Parson Russell Terrier dogs is associated with spinocerebellar ataxia. We now report that homozygous or heterozygous CAPN1-null mutations in humans result in cerebellar ataxia and limb spasticity in four independent pedigrees. Calpain-1 knockout (KO mice also exhibit a mild form of ataxia due to abnormal cerebellar development, including enhanced neuronal apoptosis, decreased number of cerebellar granule cells, and altered synaptic transmission. Enhanced apoptosis is due to absence of calpain-1-mediated cleavage of PH domain and leucine-rich repeat protein phosphatase 1 (PHLPP1, which results in inhibition of the Akt pro-survival pathway in developing granule cells. Injection of neonatal mice with the indirect Akt activator, bisperoxovanadium, or crossing calpain-1 KO mice with PHLPP1 KO mice prevented increased postnatal cerebellar granule cell apoptosis and restored granule cell density and motor coordination in adult mice. Thus, mutations in CAPN1 are an additional cause of ataxia in mammals, including humans.

  15. Hypoxia-mimetic agents inhibit proliferation and alter the morphology of human umbilical cord-derived mesenchymal stem cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeng Hui-Lan

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The therapeutic efficacy of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs for the treatment of hypoxic-ischemic diseases is closely related to level of hypoxia in the damaged tissues. To elucidate the potential therapeutic applications and limitations of hMSCs derived from human umbilical cords, the effects of hypoxia on the morphology and proliferation of hMSCs were analyzed. Results After treatment with DFO and CoCl2, hMSCs were elongated, and adjacent cells were no longer in close contact. In addition, vacuole-like structures were observed within the cytoplasm; the rough endoplasmic reticulum expanded, and expanded ridges were observed in mitochondria. In addition, DFO and CoCl2 treatments for 48 h significantly inhibited hMSCs proliferation in a concentration-dependent manner (P Conclusions The hypoxia-mimetic agents, DFO and CoCl2, alter umbilical cord-derived hMSCs morphology and inhibit their proliferation through influencing the cell cycle.

  16. Altered expression of mitochondrial and extracellular matrix genes in the heart of human fetuses with chromosome 21 trisomy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olla Carlo

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Down syndrome phenotype has been attributed to overexpression of chromosome 21 (Hsa21 genes. However, the expression profile of Hsa21 genes in trisomic human subjects as well as their effects on genes located on different chromosomes are largely unknown. Using oligonucleotide microarrays we compared the gene expression profiles of hearts of human fetuses with and without Hsa21 trisomy. Results Approximately half of the 15,000 genes examined (87 of the 168 genes on Hsa21 were expressed in the heart at 18–22 weeks of gestation. Hsa21 gene expression was globally upregulated 1.5 fold in trisomic samples. However, not all genes were equally dysregulated and 25 genes were not upregulated at all. Genes located on other chromosomes were also significantly dysregulated. Functional class scoring and gene set enrichment analyses of 473 genes, differentially expressed between trisomic and non-trisomic hearts, revealed downregulation of genes encoding mitochondrial enzymes and upregulation of genes encoding extracellular matrix proteins. There were no significant differences between trisomic fetuses with and without heart defects. Conclusion We conclude that dosage-dependent upregulation of Hsa21 genes causes dysregulation of the genes responsible for mitochondrial function and for the extracellular matrix organization in the fetal heart of trisomic subjects. These alterations might be harbingers of the heart defects associated with Hsa21 trisomy, which could be based on elusive mechanisms involving genetic variability, environmental factors and/or stochastic events.

  17. Altered calcium handling and increased contraction force in human embryonic stem cell derived cardiomyocytes following short term dexamethasone exposure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kosmidis, Georgios; Bellin, Milena; Ribeiro, Marcelo C.; Meer, Berend van; Ward-van Oostwaard, Dorien; Passier, Robert; Tertoolen, Leon G.J.; Mummery, Christine L.; Casini, Simona

    2015-01-01

    One limitation in using human pluripotent stem cell derived cardiomyocytes (hPSC-CMs) for disease modeling and cardiac safety pharmacology is their immature functional phenotype compared with adult cardiomyocytes. Here, we report that treatment of human embryonic stem cell derived cardiomyocytes (hESC-CMs) with dexamethasone, a synthetic glucocorticoid, activated glucocorticoid signaling which in turn improved their calcium handling properties and contractility. L-type calcium current and action potential properties were not affected by dexamethasone but significantly faster calcium decay, increased forces of contraction and sarcomeric lengths, were observed in hESC-CMs after dexamethasone exposure. Activating the glucocorticoid pathway can thus contribute to mediating hPSC-CMs maturation. - Highlights: • Dexamethasone accelerates Ca"2"+ transient decay in hESC-CMs. • Dexamethasone enhances SERCA and NCX function in hESC-CMs. • Dexamethasone increases force of contraction and sarcomere length in hESC-CMs. • Dexamethasone does not alter I_C_a_,_L and action potential characteristics in hESC-CMs.

  18. Aptamer-Assisted Detection of the Altered Expression of Estrogen Receptor Alpha in Human Breast Cancer.

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    Rajesh Ahirwar

    Full Text Available An increase in the expression of estrogen receptors (ER and the expanded population of ER-positive cells are two common phenotypes of breast cancer. Detection of the aberrantly expressed ERα in breast cancer is carried out using ERα-antibodies and radiolabelled ligands to make decisions about cancer treatment and targeted therapy. Capitalizing on the beneficial advantages of aptamer over the conventional antibody or radiolabelled ligand, we have identified a DNA aptamer that selectively binds and facilitates the detection of ERα in human breast cancer tissue sections. The aptamer is identified using the high throughput sequencing assisted SELEX screening. Biophysical characterization confirms the binding and formation of a thermodynamically stable complex between the identified DNA aptamer (ERaptD4 and ERα (Ka = 1.55±0.298×108 M(-1; ΔH = 4.32×104±801.1 cal/mol; ΔS = -108 cal/mol/deg. Interestingly, the specificity measurements suggest that the ERaptD4 internalizes into ERα-positive breast cancer cells in a target-selective manner and localizes specifically in the nuclear region. To harness these characteristics of ERaptD4 for detection of ERα expression in breast cancer samples, we performed the aptamer-assisted histochemical analysis of ERα in tissue samples from breast cancer patients. The results were validated by performing the immunohistochemistry on same samples with an ERα-antibody. We found that the two methods agree strongly in assay output (kappa value = 0.930, p-value <0.05 for strong ERα positive and the ERα negative samples; kappa value = 0.823, p-value <0.05 for the weak/moderate ER+ve samples, n = 20. Further, the aptamer stain the ERα-positive cells in breast tissues without cross-reacting to ERα-deficient fibroblasts, adipocytes, or the inflammatory cells. Our results demonstrate a significant consistency in the aptamer-assisted detection of ERα in strong ERα positive, moderate ERα positive and ERα negative

  19. Strongyloidiasis and infective dermatitis alter human T lymphotropic virus-1 clonality in vivo.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas A Gillet

    Full Text Available Human T-lymphotropic Virus-1 (HTLV-1 is a retrovirus that persists lifelong by driving clonal proliferation of infected T-cells. HTLV-1 causes a neuroinflammatory disease and adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma. Strongyloidiasis, a gastrointestinal infection by the helminth Strongyloides stercoralis, and Infective Dermatitis associated with HTLV-1 (IDH, appear to be risk factors for the development of HTLV-1 related diseases. We used high-throughput sequencing to map and quantify the insertion sites of the provirus in order to monitor the clonality of the HTLV-1-infected T-cell population (i.e. the number of distinct clones and abundance of each clone. A newly developed biodiversity estimator called "DivE" was used to estimate the total number of clones in the blood. We found that the major determinant of proviral load in all subjects without leukemia/lymphoma was the total number of HTLV-1-infected clones. Nevertheless, the significantly higher proviral load in patients with strongyloidiasis or IDH was due to an increase in the mean clone abundance, not to an increase in the number of infected clones. These patients appear to be less capable of restricting clone abundance than those with HTLV-1 alone. In patients co-infected with Strongyloides there was an increased degree of oligoclonal expansion and a higher rate of turnover (i.e. appearance and disappearance of HTLV-1-infected clones. In Strongyloides co-infected patients and those with IDH, proliferation of the most abundant HTLV-1⁺ T-cell clones is independent of the genomic environment of the provirus, in sharp contrast to patients with HTLV-1 infection alone. This implies that new selection forces are driving oligoclonal proliferation in Strongyloides co-infection and IDH. We conclude that strongyloidiasis and IDH increase the risk of development of HTLV-1-associated diseases by increasing the rate of infection of new clones and the abundance of existing HTLV-1⁺ clones.

  20. Sudden Ionospheric Disturbances (SID)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Sudden ionospheric disturbances (SID) are caused by solar flare enhanced X-rays in the 1 to 10 angstrom range. Solar flares can produce large increases of ionization...

  1. Depression Disturbs Germany

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2011-01-01

    The suicide of Robert Enke,the goalkeeper of the Germany national football team who had battled depression for years,stunned the country and cast depression into the national spotlight as a disturbing disease.

  2. Analysis of disturbance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ciala-Wein, H.; Stegmaier, W.

    1977-12-01

    The analyses of disturbances are the supposition for the development of processes and plants. They are very important in the field of nuclear testing plants. In this report are described the possibilities to register the circumstances of the disturbance in a pilot waste processing facility and a computer programme to interpret them. This is a first scheme and it will be necessary to complete it. (orig.) [de

  3. Obese fathers lead to an altered metabolism and obesity in their children in adulthood: review of experimental and human studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ornellas, Fernanda; Carapeto, Priscila V; Mandarim-de-Lacerda, Carlos A; Aguila, Marcia B

    To discuss the recent literature on paternal obesity, focusing on the possible mechanisms of transmission of the phenotypes from the father to the children. A non-systematic review in the PubMed database found few publications in which paternal obesity was implicated in the adverse transmission of characteristics to offspring. Specific articles on epigenetics were also evaluated. As the subject is recent and still controversial, all articles were considered regardless of year of publication. Studies in humans and animals have established that paternal obesity impairs their hormones, metabolism, and sperm function, which can be transmitted to their offspring. In humans, paternal obesity results in insulin resistance/type 2 diabetes and increased levels of cortisol in umbilical cord blood, which increases the risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Notably, there is an association between body fat in parents and the prevalence of obesity in their daughters. In animals, paternal obesity led to offspring alterations on glucose-insulin homeostasis, hepatic lipogenesis, hypothalamus/feeding behavior, kidney of the offspring; it also impairs the reproductive potential of male offspring with sperm oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction. An explanation for these observations (human and animal) is epigenetics, considered the primary tool for the transmission of phenotypes from the father to offspring, such as DNA methylation, histone modifications, and non-coding RNA. Paternal obesity can induce programmed phenotypes in offspring through epigenetics. Therefore, it can be considered a public health problem, affecting the children's future life. Copyright © 2017 Sociedade Brasileira de Pediatria. Published by Elsevier Editora Ltda. All rights reserved.

  4. Compartment-specific distribution of human intestinal innate lymphoid cells is altered in HIV patients under effective therapy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Krämer

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Innate lymphocyte cells (ILCs, a novel family of innate immune cells are considered to function as key orchestrators of immune defences at mucosal surfaces and to be crucial for maintaining an intact intestinal barrier. Accordingly, first data suggest depletion of ILCs to be involved in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-associated damage of the intestinal mucosa and subsequent microbial translocation. However, although ILCs are preferentially localized at mucosal surfaces, only little is known regarding distribution and function of ILCs in the human gastrointestinal tract. Here, we show that in HIV(- individuals composition and functional capacity of intestinal ILCs is compartment-specific with group 1 ILCs representing the major fraction in the upper gastrointestinal (GI tract, whereas ILC3 are the predominant population in ileum and colon, respectively. In addition, we present first data indicating that local cytokine concentrations, especially that of IL-7, might modulate composition of gut ILCs. Distribution of intestinal ILCs was significantly altered in HIV patients, who displayed decreased frequency of total ILCs in ileum and colon owing to reduced numbers of both CD127(+ILC1 and ILC3. Of note, frequency of colonic ILC3 was inversely correlated with serum levels of I-FABP and sCD14, surrogate markers for loss of gut barrier integrity and microbial translocation, respectively. Both expression of the IL-7 receptor CD127 on ILCs as well as mucosal IL-7 mRNA levels were decreased in HIV(+ patients, especially in those parts of the GI tract with reduced ILC frequencies, suggesting that impaired IL-7 responses of ILCs might contribute to incomplete reconstitution of ILCs under effective anti-retroviral therapy. This is the first report comparing distribution and function of ILCs along the intestinal mucosa of the entire human gastrointestinal tract in HIV(+ and HIV(- individuals.

  5. γ-Secretase modulators reduce endogenous amyloid β42 levels in human neural progenitor cells without altering neuronal differentiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    D’Avanzo, Carla; Sliwinski, Christopher; Wagner, Steven L.; Tanzi, Rudolph E.; Kim, Doo Yeon; Kovacs, Dora M.

    2015-01-01

    Soluble γ-secretase modulators (SGSMs) selectively decrease toxic amyloid β (Aβ) peptides (Aβ42). However, their effect on the physiologic functions of γ-secretase has not been tested in human model systems. γ-Secretase regulates fate determination of neural progenitor cells. Thus, we studied the impact of SGSMs on the neuronal differentiation of ReNcell VM (ReN) human neural progenitor cells (hNPCs). Quantitative PCR analysis showed that treatment of neurosphere-like ReN cell aggregate cultures with γ-secretase inhibitors (GSIs), but not SGSMs, induced a 2- to 4-fold increase in the expression of the neuronal markers Tuj1 and doublecortin. GSI treatment also induced neuronal marker protein expression, as shown by Western blot analysis. In the same conditions, SGSM treatment selectively reduced endogenous Aβ42 levels by ∼80%. Mechanistically, we found that Notch target gene expressions were selectively inhibited by a GSI, not by SGSM treatment. We can assert, for the first time, that SGSMs do not affect the neuronal differentiation of hNPCs while selectively decreasing endogenous Aβ42 levels in the same conditions. Our results suggest that our hNPC differentiation system can serve as a useful model to test the impact of GSIs and SGSMs on both endogenous Aβ levels and γ-secretase physiologic functions including endogenous Notch signaling.—D’Avanzo, C., Sliwinski, C., Wagner, S. L., Tanzi, R. E., Kim, D. Y., Kovacs, D. M. γ-Secretase modulators reduce endogenous amyloid β42 levels in human neural progenitor cells without altering neuronal differentiation. PMID:25903103

  6. Alteration in Haematological and Liver Function Indices during Human Infection with Fasciola spp. Post Treatment with Triclabendazole

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.I. Edalatzadeh

    2006-07-01

    Full Text Available Introduction & Objective: Fascioliasis is a zoonotic parasitic disease, caused by the liver fluke, Fasciola spp.. Human is occasional host when ingesting the metacercaria by eating contaminated aquatic vegetable. In the two past decades, human fasciolasis was emerging as a problem of public health in the Guilan province; in Anzali city. Triclabendazole is a novel anti-helmenthic that during recent years has been used for fascioliasis treatment in this region. The aim of the present work is to study alteration in haematological and liver function indices during human infection with Fasciola spp. pre and post treatment with triclabendazoleMaterials & Methods: The present work is a longitudinal clinical trail. In this regard, fifty confirmed fasciolasis patients, were chosen for parasitological, hematological and biochemical examinations pre-therapy as well as 1 and 6 months post-therapy. Formalin-ether and modified Telemann methods were used for stool examination. For Fasciola antibody detection ELISA technique was employed. Hematological and biochemical tests were performed by standard methods. Results: Results indicated that, triclabendazole efficacy was 74% after usage as one dose of 20mg/kg and reached to 88% after repeating in the next month. Before triclabebdazole therapy the Hb and HCT of the patients were slightly found lower than normal ranges, meanwhile the ESR and eosinophil percentages were higher. However following receiving the drug, in the cured individuals, the indices returned to the normal ranges but in the non-cured individuals were not shifted to the normal. On the other hand liver function indices of the patients mostly were at normal ranges before and following drug therapy.Conclusion: In conclusion haematological indices could be valuable indicator for successful therapy of patients treated with triclabendazole.

  7. Streamflow alteration at selected sites in Kansas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juracek, Kyle E.; Eng, Ken

    2017-06-26

    An understanding of streamflow alteration in response to various disturbances is necessary for the effective management of stream habitat for a variety of species in Kansas. Streamflow alteration can have negative ecological effects. Using a modeling approach, streamflow alteration was assessed for 129 selected U.S. Geological Survey streamgages in the State for which requisite streamflow and basin-characteristic information was available. The assessment involved a comparison of the observed condition from 1980 to 2015 with the predicted expected (least-disturbed) condition for 29 streamflow metrics. The metrics represent various characteristics of streamflow including average flow (annual, monthly) and low and high flow (frequency, duration, magnitude).Streamflow alteration in Kansas was indicated locally, regionally, and statewide. Given the absence of a pronounced trend in annual precipitation in Kansas, a precipitation-related explanation for streamflow alteration was not supported. Thus, the likely explanation for streamflow alteration was human activity. Locally, a flashier flow regime (typified by shorter lag times and more frequent and higher peak discharges) was indicated for three streamgages with urbanized basins that had higher percentages of impervious surfaces than other basins in the State. The combination of localized reservoir effects and regional groundwater pumping from the High Plains aquifer likely was responsible, in part, for diminished conditions indicated for multiple streamflow metrics in western and central Kansas. Statewide, the implementation of agricultural land-management practices to reduce runoff may have been responsible, in part, for a diminished duration and magnitude of high flows. In central and eastern Kansas, implemented agricultural land-management practices may have been partly responsible for an inflated magnitude of low flows at several sites.

  8. Postural Control Disturbances Produced By Exposure to HMD and Dome Vr Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harm, D. L.; Taylor, L. C.

    2005-01-01

    Two critical and unresolved human factors issues in VR systems are: 1) potential "cybersickness", a form of motion sickness which is experienced in virtual worlds, and 2) maladaptive sensorimotor performance following exposure to VR systems. Interestingly, these aftereffects are often quite similar to adaptive sensorimotor responses observed in astronauts during and/or following space flight. Most astronauts and cosmonauts experience perceptual and sensorimotor disturbances during and following space flight. All astronauts exhibit decrements in postural control following space flight. It has been suggested that training in virtual reality (VR) may be an effective countermeasure for minimizing perceptual and/or sensorimotor disturbances. People adapt to consistent, sustained alterations of sensory input such as those produced by microgravity, and experimentally-produced stimulus rearrangements (e.g., reversing prisms, magnifying lenses, flight simulators, and VR systems). Adaptation is revealed by aftereffects including perceptual disturbances and sensorimotor control disturbances. The purpose of the current study was to compare disturbances in postural control produced by dome and head-mounted virtual environment displays. Individuals recovered from motion sickness and the detrimental effects of exposure to virtual reality on postural control within one hour. Sickness severity and initial decrements in postural equilibrium decreases over days, which suggests that subjects become dual-adapted over time. These findings provide some direction for developing training schedules for VR users that facilitate adaptation, and address safety concerns about aftereffects.

  9. Perfluorinated chemicals: Differential toxicity, inhibition of aromatase activity and alteration of cellular lipids in human placental cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gorrochategui, Eva; Pérez-Albaladejo, Elisabet [Department of Environmental Chemistry, IDAEA–CSIC, 08034 Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain); Casas, Josefina [Department of Biomedicinal Chemistry, IQAC–CSIC, 08034 Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain); Lacorte, Sílvia, E-mail: slbqam@cid.csic.es [Department of Environmental Chemistry, IDAEA–CSIC, 08034 Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain); Porte, Cinta, E-mail: cinta.porte@cid.csic.es [Department of Environmental Chemistry, IDAEA–CSIC, 08034 Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain)

    2014-06-01

    The cytotoxicity of eight perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), namely, perfluorobutanoic acid (PFBA), perfluorohexanoic acid (PFHxA), perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA), perfluorododecanoic acid (PFDoA), perfluorobutanesulfonate (PFBS), perfluorohexanesulfonate (PFHxS) and perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS) was assessed in the human placental choriocarcinoma cell line JEG-3. Only the long chain PFCs – PFOS, PFDoA, PFNA, PFOA – showed significant cytotoxicity in JEG-3 cells with EC50 values in the range of 107 to 647 μM. The observed cytotoxicity was to some extent related to a higher uptake of the longer chain PFCs by cells (PFDoA > PFOS ≫ PFNA > PFOA > PFHxA). Moreover, this work evidences a high potential of PFOS, PFOA and PFBS to act as aromatase inhibitors in placental cells with IC50s in the range of 57–80 μM, the inhibitory effect of PFBS being particularly important despite the rather low uptake of the compound by cells. Finally, exposure of JEG-3 cells to a mixture of the eight PFCs (0.6 μM each) led to a relative increase (up to 3.4-fold) of several lipid classes, including phosphatidylcholines (PCs), plasmalogen PC and lyso plasmalogen PC, which suggests an interference of PFCs with membrane lipids. Overall, this work highlights the ability of the PFC mixture to alter cellular lipid pattern at concentrations well below those that generate toxicity, and the potential of the short chain PFBS, often considered a safe substitute of PFOS, to significantly inhibit aromatase activity in placental cells. - Highlights: • Eight perfluorinated chemicals of different chain lengths have been selected. • Long chain ones – PFOS, PFDoA, PFNA, PFOA – were cytotoxic in placenta cells. • The uptake of long chain perfluorinated chemicals by cells was comparatively higher. • PFOS, PFOA and the short chain PFBS significantly inhibited aromatase activity. • A mixture of perfluorinated chemicals significantly altered placenta cell

  10. Perfluorinated chemicals: Differential toxicity, inhibition of aromatase activity and alteration of cellular lipids in human placental cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gorrochategui, Eva; Pérez-Albaladejo, Elisabet; Casas, Josefina; Lacorte, Sílvia; Porte, Cinta

    2014-01-01

    The cytotoxicity of eight perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), namely, perfluorobutanoic acid (PFBA), perfluorohexanoic acid (PFHxA), perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA), perfluorododecanoic acid (PFDoA), perfluorobutanesulfonate (PFBS), perfluorohexanesulfonate (PFHxS) and perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS) was assessed in the human placental choriocarcinoma cell line JEG-3. Only the long chain PFCs – PFOS, PFDoA, PFNA, PFOA – showed significant cytotoxicity in JEG-3 cells with EC50 values in the range of 107 to 647 μM. The observed cytotoxicity was to some extent related to a higher uptake of the longer chain PFCs by cells (PFDoA > PFOS ≫ PFNA > PFOA > PFHxA). Moreover, this work evidences a high potential of PFOS, PFOA and PFBS to act as aromatase inhibitors in placental cells with IC50s in the range of 57–80 μM, the inhibitory effect of PFBS being particularly important despite the rather low uptake of the compound by cells. Finally, exposure of JEG-3 cells to a mixture of the eight PFCs (0.6 μM each) led to a relative increase (up to 3.4-fold) of several lipid classes, including phosphatidylcholines (PCs), plasmalogen PC and lyso plasmalogen PC, which suggests an interference of PFCs with membrane lipids. Overall, this work highlights the ability of the PFC mixture to alter cellular lipid pattern at concentrations well below those that generate toxicity, and the potential of the short chain PFBS, often considered a safe substitute of PFOS, to significantly inhibit aromatase activity in placental cells. - Highlights: • Eight perfluorinated chemicals of different chain lengths have been selected. • Long chain ones – PFOS, PFDoA, PFNA, PFOA – were cytotoxic in placenta cells. • The uptake of long chain perfluorinated chemicals by cells was comparatively higher. • PFOS, PFOA and the short chain PFBS significantly inhibited aromatase activity. • A mixture of perfluorinated chemicals significantly altered placenta cell

  11. CD133+ cells contribute to radioresistance via altered regulation of DNA repair genes in human lung cancer cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Desai, Amar; Webb, Bryan; Gerson, Stanton L.

    2014-01-01

    Background: Radioresistance in human tumors has been linked in part to a subset of cells termed cancer stem cells (CSCs). The prominin 1 (CD133) cell surface protein is proposed to be a marker enriching for CSCs. We explore the importance of DNA repair in contributing to radioresistance in CD133+ lung cancer cells. Materials and methods: A549 and H1299 lung cancer cell lines were used. Sorted CD133+ cells were exposed to either single 4 Gy or 8 Gy doses and clonogenic survival measured. ϒ-H2AX immunofluorescence and quantitative real time PCR was performed on sorted CD133+ cells both in the absence of IR and after two single 4 Gy doses. Lentiviral shRNA was used to silence repair genes. Results: A549 but not H1299 cells expand their CD133+ population after single 4 Gy exposure, and isolated A549 CD133+ cells demonstrate IR resistance. This resistance corresponded with enhanced repair of DNA double strand breaks (DSBs) and upregulated expression of DSB repair genes in A549 cells. Prior IR exposure of two single 4 Gy doses resulted in acquired DNA repair upregulation and improved repair proficiency in both A549 and H1299. Finally Exo1 and Rad51 silencing in A549 cells abrogated the CD133+ IR expansion phenotype and induced IR sensitivity in sorted CD133+ cells. Conclusions: CD133 identifies a population of cells within specific tumor types containing altered expression of DNA repair genes that are inducible upon exposure to chemotherapy. This altered gene expression contributes to enhanced DSB resolution and the radioresistance phenotype of these cells. We also identify DNA repair genes which may serve as promising therapeutic targets to confer radiosensitivity to CSCs

  12. Altered features and increased chemosensitivity of human breast cancer cells mediated by adipose tissue-derived mesenchymal stromal cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kucerova, Lucia; Skolekova, Svetlana; Matuskova, Miroslava; Bohac, Martin; Kozovska, Zuzana

    2013-01-01

    Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) represent heterogeneous cell population suitable for cell therapies in regenerative medicine. MSCs can also substantially affect tumor biology due to their ability to be recruited to the tumor stroma and interact with malignant cells via direct contacts and paracrine signaling. The aim of our study was to characterize molecular changes dictated by adipose tissue-derived mesenchymal stromal cells (AT-MSCs) and the effects on drug responses in human breast cancer cells SKBR3. The tumor cells were either directly cocultured with AT-MSCs or exposed to MSCs-conditioned medium (MSC-CM). Changes in cell biology were evaluated by kinetic live cell imaging, fluorescent microscopy, scratch wound assay, expression analysis, cytokine secretion profiling, ATP-based viability and apoptosis assays. The efficiency of cytotoxic treatment in the presence of AT-MSCs or MSCs-CM was analyzed. The AT-MSCs altered tumor cell morphology, induced epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition, increased mammosphere formation, cell confluence and migration of SKBR3. These features were attributed to molecular changes induced by MSCs-secreted cytokines and chemokines in breast cancer cells. AT-MSCs significantly inhibited the proliferation of SKBR3 cells in direct cocultures which was shown to be dependent on the SDF-1α/CXCR4 signaling axis. MSC-CM-exposed SKBR3 or SKBR3 in direct coculture with AT-MSCs exhibited increased chemosensitivity and induction of apoptosis in response to doxorubicin and 5-fluorouracil. Our work further highlights the multi-level nature of tumor-stromal cell interplay and demonstrates the capability of AT-MSCs and MSC-secreted factors to alter the anti-tumor drug responses

  13. Genetic structure of brown pelicans (Pelecanus occidentalis in the northern Gulf of Mexico in the context of human management and disturbance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brock Geary

    Full Text Available Environmental disturbances, both natural and anthropogenic, have the capacity to substantially impact animal behavior and abundance, which can in turn influence patterns of genetic diversity and gene flow. However, little empirical information is available on the nature and degree of such changes due to the relative rarity of longitudinal genetic sampling of wild populations at appropriate intervals. Addressing this knowledge gap is therefore of interest to evolutionary biologists, policy makers, and managers. In the past half century, populations of the brown pelican (Pelecanus occidentalis in the southeastern United States have been exposed to regional extirpations, translocations, colony losses, and oil spills, but potential impacts on genetic diversity and population structure remain unknown. To investigate the cumulative impacts of recent disturbances and management actions, we analyzed seven microsatellite loci using genetic samples collected from 540 nestlings across twelve pelican colonies from two time periods, corresponding to before (n = 305 and after (n = 235 the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Pre-2010 populations in Texas were significantly differentiated from Louisiana, Alabama, and Florida populations to the east, with reintroduced populations in southeastern Louisiana having less genetic diversity than sites in Texas, consistent with a recent bottleneck. In contrast, there was no evidence of a geographic component to genetic structure among colonies sampled after the spill, consistent with increased dispersal among sites following the event. This pattern may be associated with reduced philopatry in response to colony abandonment in the areas most heavily impacted by the Deepwater Horizon event, though other factors (e.g., rehabilitation and translocation of oiled birds or colony loss due to erosion and tropical storms were likely also involved. Future monitoring is necessary to determine if bottlenecks and loss of genetic

  14. Contacting co-culture of human retinal microvascular endothelial cells alters barrier function of human embryonic stem cell derived retinal pigment epithelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skottman, H; Muranen, J; Lähdekorpi, H; Pajula, E; Mäkelä, K; Koivusalo, L; Koistinen, A; Uusitalo, H; Kaarniranta, K; Juuti-Uusitalo, K

    2017-10-01

    Here we evaluated the effects of human retinal microvascular endothelial cells (hREC) on mature human embryonic stem cell (hESC) derived retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells. The hESC-RPE cells (Regea08/017, Regea08/023 or Regea11/013) and hREC (ACBRI 181) were co-cultured on opposite sides of transparent membranes for up to six weeks. Thereafter barrier function, small molecule permeability, localization of RPE and endothelial cell marker proteins, cellular fine structure, and growth factor secretion of were evaluated. After co-culture, the RPE specific CRALBP and endothelial cell specific von Willebrand factor were appropriately localized. In addition, the general morphology, pigmentation, and fine structure of hESC-RPE cells were unaffected. Co-culture increased the barrier function of hESC-RPE cells, detected both with TEER measurements and cumulative permeability of FD4 - although the differences varied among the cell lines. Co-culturing significantly altered VEGF and PEDF secretion, but again the differences were cell line specific. The results of this study showed that co-culture with hREC affects hESC-RPE functionality. In addition, co-culture revealed drastic cell line specific differences, most notably in growth factor secretion. This model has the potential to be used as an in vitro outer blood-retinal barrier model for drug permeability testing. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Disturbance recording system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chandra, A.K.; Deshpande, S.V.; Mayya, A.; Vaidya, U.W.; Premraj, M.K.; Patil, N.B.

    1994-01-01

    A computerized system for disturbance monitoring, recording and display has been developed for use in nuclear power plants and is versatile enough to be used where ever a large number of parameters need to be recorded, e.g. conventional power plants, chemical industry etc. The Disturbance Recording System (DRS) has been designed to continuously monitor a process plant and record crucial parameters. The DRS provides a centralized facility to monitor and continuously record 64 process parameters scanned every 1 sec for 5 days. The system also provides facility for storage of 64 parameters scanned every 200 msec during 2 minutes prior to and 3 minutes after a disturbance. In addition the system can initiate, on demand, the recording of 8 parameters at a fast rate of every 5 msec for a period of 5 sec. and thus act as a visicorder. All this data is recorded in non-volatile memory and can be displayed, printed/plotted and used for subsequent analysis. Since data can be stored densely on floppy disks, the volume of space required for archival storage is also low. As a disturbance recorder, the DRS allows the operator to view the state of the plant prior to occurrence of the disturbance and helps in identifying the root cause. (author). 10 refs., 7 figs

  16. Nesting habits influence population genetic structure of a bee living in anthropogenic disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vickruck, J L; Richards, M H

    2017-05-01

    While most organisms are negatively affected by anthropogenic disturbance, a few species thrive in landscapes altered by humans. Typically, native bees are negatively impacted by anthropogenic environmental change, including habitat alteration and climate change. Here, we investigate the population structure of the eastern carpenter bee Xylocopa virginica, a generalist pollinator with a broad geographic range spanning eastern North America. Eastern carpenter bees now nest almost exclusively in artificial wooden structures, linking their geographic distribution and population structure to human activities and disturbance. To investigate the population structure of these bees, we sampled females from 16 different populations from across their range. Nine species-specific microsatellite loci showed that almost all populations are genetically distinct, but with high levels of genetic diversity and low levels of inbreeding overall. Broadly speaking, populations clustered into three distinct genetic groups: a northern group, a western group and a core group. The northern group had low effective population sizes, decreased genetic variability and the highest levels of inbreeding in the data set, suggesting that carpenter bees may be expanding their range northward. The western group was genetically distinct, but lacked signals of a recent range expansion. Climatic data showed that summer and winter temperatures explained a significant amount of the genetic differentiation seen among populations, while precipitation did not. Our results indicate that X. virginica may be one of the rare 'anthrophilic' species that thrive in the face of anthropogenic disturbance. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. MUC19 expression in human ocular surface and lacrimal gland and its alteration in Sjögren syndrome patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, D F; Chen, Y; Han, J M; Zhang, H; Chen, X P; Zou, W J; Liang, L Y; Xu, C C; Liu, Z G

    2008-02-01

    This study investigated the expression of MUC19, a newly discovered gel-forming mucin gene, in normal human lacrimal functional unit components and its alteration in Sjögren syndrome patients. Real-time PCR and immunohistochemistry were performed to determine the expression of MUC19 and MUC5AC in human cornea, conjunctiva, and lacrimal gland tissues. Conjunctival impression cytology specimens were collected from normal control subjects and Sjögren syndrome patients for Real-time PCR, PAS staining, and immunohistochemistry assays. In addition, conjunctiva biopsy specimens from both groups were examined for the expression differences of MUC19 and MUC5AC at both mRNA and protein level. The MUC19 mRNA was found to be present in cornea, conjunctiva and lacrimal gland tissues. The immunohistochemical staining of mucins showed that MUC19 was expressed in epithelial cells from corneal, conjunctival, and lacrimal gland tissues. In contrast, MUC5AC mRNA was only present in conjunctiva and lacrimal gland tissues, but not in cornea. Immunostaining demonstrates the co-staining of MUC19 and MUC5AC in conjunctival goblet cells. Consistent with the significant decrease of mucous secretion, both MUC19 and MUC5AC were decreased in conjunctiva of Sjögren syndrome patients compared to normal subjects. Considering the contribution of gel-forming mucins to the homeostasis of the ocular surface, the decreased expression of MUC19 and MUC5AC in Sjögren syndrome patients suggested that these mucins may be involved in the disruption of the ocular surface homeostasis in this disease.

  18. Severe exercise and exercise training exert opposite effects on human neutrophil apoptosis via altering the redox status.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guan-Da Syu

    Full Text Available Neutrophil spontaneous apoptosis, a process crucial for immune regulation, is mainly controlled by alterations in reactive oxygen species (ROS and mitochondria integrity. Exercise has been proposed to be a physiological way to modulate immunity; while acute severe exercise (ASE usually impedes immunity, chronic moderate exercise (CME improves it. This study aimed to investigate whether and how ASE and CME oppositely regulate human neutrophil apoptosis. Thirteen sedentary young males underwent an initial ASE and were subsequently divided into exercise and control groups. The exercise group (n = 8 underwent 2 months of CME followed by 2 months of detraining. Additional ASE paradigms were performed at the end of each month. Neutrophils were isolated from blood specimens drawn at rest and immediately after each ASE for assaying neutrophil spontaneous apoptosis (annexin-V binding on the outer surface along with redox-related parameters and mitochondria-related parameters. Our results showed that i the initial ASE immediately increased the oxidative stress (cytosolic ROS and glutathione oxidation, and sequentially accelerated the reduction of mitochondrial membrane potential, the surface binding of annexin-V, and the generation of mitochondrial ROS; ii CME upregulated glutathione level, retarded spontaneous apoptosis and delayed mitochondria deterioration; iii most effects of CME were unchanged after detraining; and iv CME blocked ASE effects and this capability remained intact even after detraining. Furthermore, the ASE effects on neutrophil spontaneous apoptosis were mimicked by adding exogenous H(2O(2, but not by suppressing mitochondrial membrane potential. In conclusion, while ASE induced an oxidative state and resulted in acceleration of human neutrophil apoptosis, CME delayed neutrophil apoptosis by maintaining a reduced state for long periods of time even after detraining.

  19. Langerhans cell homeostasis and activation is altered in hyperplastic human papillomavirus type 16 E7 expressing epidermis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nor Malia Abd Warif

    Full Text Available It has previously been shown that expression of human papillomavirus type 16 (HPV E7 in epidermis causes hyperplasia and chronic inflammation, characteristics of pre-malignant lesions. Importantly, E7-expressing epidermis is strongly immune suppressed and is not rejected when transplanted onto immune competent mice. Professional antigen presenting cells are considered essential for initiation of the adaptive immune response that results in graft rejection. Langerhans cells (LC are the only antigen presenting cells located in normal epidermis and altered phenotype and function of these cells may contribute to the immune suppressive microenvironment. Here, we show that LC are atypically activated as a direct result of E7 expression in the epidermis, and independent of the presence of lymphocytes. The number of LC was significantly increased and the LC are functionally impaired, both in migration and in antigen uptake. However when the LC were extracted from K14E7 skin and matured in vitro they were functionally competent to present and cross-present antigen, and to activate T cells. The ability of the LC to present and cross-present antigen following maturation supports retention of full functional capacity when removed from the hyperplastic skin microenvironment. As such, opportunities are afforded for the development of therapies to restore normal LC function in hyperplastic skin.

  20. The synovial microenvironment of osteoarthritic joints alters RNA-seq expression profiles of human primary articular chondrocytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewallen, Eric A.; Bonin, Carolina A.; Li, Xin; Smith, Jay; Karperien, Marcel; Larson, A. Noelle; Lewallen, David G.; Cool, Simon M.; Westendorf, Jennifer J.; Krych, Aaron J.; Leontovich, Alexey A.; Im, Hee-Jeong; van Wijnen, Andre J.

    2018-01-01

    Osteoarthritis (OA) is a disabling degenerative joint disease that prompts pain with limited treatment options. To permit early diagnosis and treatment of OA, a high resolution mechanistic understanding of human chondrocytes in normal and diseased states is necessary. In this study, we assessed the biological effects of OA-related changes in the synovial microenvironment on chondrocytes embedded within anatomically intact cartilage from joints with different pathological grades by next generation RNA-sequencing (RNA-seq). We determined the transcriptome of primary articular chondrocytes derived from pristine knees and ankles, as well as from joints affected by OA. The GALAXY bioinformatics platform was used to facilitate biological interpretations. Comparisons of patient samples by k-means, hierarchical clustering and principal component analysis reveal that primary chondrocytes exhibit OA grade-related differences in gene expression, including genes involved in cell-adhesion, ECM production and immune response. We conclude that diseased synovial microenvironments in joints with different histopathological OA grades directly alter gene expression in chondrocytes. One ramification of this finding is that sampling anatomically intact cartilage from OA joints is not an ideal source of healthy chondrocytes, nor should they be used to generate a normal baseline for the molecular characterization of diseased joints. PMID:27378743

  1. Early impairment of gut function and gut flora supporting a role for alteration of gastrointestinal mucosa in human immunodeficiency virus pathogenesis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gori, Andrea; Tincati, Camilla; Rizzardini, Giuliano; Torti, Carlo; Quirino, Tiziana; Haarman, Monique; Ben Amor, Kaouther; van Schaik, Jacqueline; Vriesema, Aldwin; Knol, Jan; Marchetti, Giulia; Welling, Gjalt; Clerici, Mario

    Our results show that impairment of the gastrointestinal tracts in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-positive patients is present in the early phases of HIV disease. This impairment is associated with alterations in gut microbiota and intestinal inflammatory parameters. These findings support the

  2. Substitution of aspartic acid-686 by histidine or asparagine in the human androgen receptor leads to a functionally inactive protein with altered hormone-binding characteristics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ris-Stalpers, C.; Trifiro, M. A.; Kuiper, G. G.; Jenster, G.; Romalo, G.; Sai, T.; van Rooij, H. C.; Kaufman, M.; Rosenfield, R. L.; Liao, S.

    1991-01-01

    We have identified two different single nucleotide alterations in codon 686 (GAC; aspartic acid) in exon 4 of the human androgen receptor gene in three unrelated families with the complete form of androgen insensitivity. One mutation (G----C) results in an aspartic acid----histidine substitution

  3. Errantum: Treatment of human astrocytoma U87 cells with silicon dioxide nanoparticles lowers their survival and alters their expression of mitochondrial and cell signaling proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lai JCK

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Lai JCK, Ananthakrishnan G, Jandhyam S, et al. Treatment of human astrocytoma U87 cells with silicon dioxide nanoparticles lowers their survival and alters their expression of mitochondrial and cell signaling proteins. Int J Nanomedicine. 2010;5:715–723.The wrong image was used in Figure 5 on page 719.

  4. Effects of fishing disturbance on benthic communities and secondary production within an intensively fished area

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reiss, H.; Greenstreet, S.P.R.; Sieben, K.; Ehrich, S.; Piet, G.J.; Quirijns, F.; Wolff, W.J.; Kroncke, I.

    2009-01-01

    Demersal fishing alters seabed habitats and affects the structure and functioning of benthic invertebrate communities. At a critical level of disturbance, such communities may approach an equilibrium disturbed state in which a further increase in disturbance has little additional impact. Such

  5. Nutritional disturbances by adolescent

    OpenAIRE

    Stassart, Martine

    2011-01-01

    The nutritional disturbances are frequent by adolescents. That is a psychological defense against dependance toward the mother but also a middle to remain in a childish position i.e. either as a fat baby - in the fall of obesity- or as the ideal pre- or bisexual great child - in the case of anorexia.

  6. Humanized Mouse Model of Skin Inflammation Is Characterized by Disturbed Keratinocyte Differentiation and Influx of IL-17A Producing T Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Oliveira, Vivian L.; Keijsers, Romy R. M. C.; van de Kerkhof, Peter C. M.; Seyger, Marieke M. B.; Fasse, Esther; Svensson, Lars; Latta, Markus; Norsgaard, Hanne; Labuda, Tord; Hupkens, Pieter; van Erp, Piet E. J.; Joosten, Irma; Koenen, Hans J. P. M.

    2012-01-01

    Humanized mouse models offer a challenging possibility to study human cell function in vivo. In the huPBL-SCID-huSkin allograft model human skin is transplanted onto immunodeficient mice and allowed to heal. Thereafter allogeneic human peripheral blood mononuclear cells are infused intra peritoneally to induce T cell mediated inflammation and microvessel destruction of the human skin. This model has great potential for in vivo study of human immune cells in (skin) inflammatory processes and for preclinical screening of systemically administered immunomodulating agents. Here we studied the inflammatory skin response of human keratinocytes and human T cells and the concomitant systemic human T cell response. As new findings in the inflamed human skin of the huPBL-SCID-huSkin model we here identified: 1. Parameters of dermal pathology that enable precise quantification of the local skin inflammatory response exemplified by acanthosis, increased expression of human β-defensin-2, Elafin, K16, Ki67 and reduced expression of K10 by microscopy and immunohistochemistry. 2. Induction of human cytokines and chemokines using quantitative real-time PCR. 3. Influx of inflammation associated IL-17A-producing human CD4+ and CD8+ T cells as well as immunoregulatory CD4+Foxp3+ cells using immunohistochemistry and -fluorescence, suggesting that active immune regulation is taking place locally in the inflamed skin. 4. Systemic responses that revealed activated and proliferating human CD4+ and CD8+ T cells that acquired homing marker expression of CD62L and CLA. Finally, we demonstrated the value of the newly identified parameters by showing significant changes upon systemic treatment with the T cell inhibitory agents cyclosporine-A and rapamycin. In summary, here we equipped the huPBL-SCID-huSkin humanized mouse model with relevant tools not only to quantify the inflammatory dermal response, but also to monitor the peripheral immune status. This combined approach will gain our

  7. Sleep disturbance associated factors in menopausal women

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamid Haghani

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: Sleep is necessary in life and approximately 1/3 of human life is devoted to sleep. One of the most common problems in menopausal women is sleep disturbance. The aim of this study was to determine frequency of sleep disorders and its related factors in 50 – 60 years old women Methods: A cross-sectional, descriptive study was conducted on 200 eligible women who referred to selected health centers of Tehran University of Medical Sciences (TUMS. Demographic form, ten-point slide to review sexual satisfaction and Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index Questioner (PSQI were used for data collection. Data was analyzed using ANOVA, t-test, and Pearson correlation tests.Results: The mean age of women was 53.6±3.6 year, menopause age 47.8±4, number of children 4.76±2 and partner age was 57.99±6.6. 34.5% of women were satisfied from their sexual relationship and their score was 8-10. Rate of sleep disturbances in this group was about 70%. The results showed that between four variables: economical status, occupation, partner occupation and educational status were significantly associated with sleep disturbance (P=0.002. There was not significant difference between other demographic information and sleep disturbance.Conclusion: The results show high prevalence of sleep disturbance symptoms among menopausal women. According to the relationship between some personal characters and sleep disturbance, health care providers need to consider these variables.

  8. Dose-effect of ionizing radiation-induced PIG3 gene expression alteration in human lymphoblastoid AHH-1 cells and human peripheral blood lymphocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Qing-Jie; Zhang, De-Qin; Zhang, Qing-Zhao; Feng, Jiang-Bin; Lu, Xue; Wang, Xin-Ru; Li, Kun-Peng; Chen, De-Qing; Mu, Xiao-Feng; Li, Shuang; Gao, Ling

    2015-01-01

    To identify new ionizing radiation (IR)-sensitive genes and observe the dose-effect of gene expression alteration (GEA) induced by IR. Microarray was used to screen the differentially expressed genes in human lymphoblastoid cells (AHH-1) using three doses of (60)Co γ-rays (0.5-8 Gy at 1 Gy/min). Given that p53-inducible gene 3 (PIG3) was consistently upregulated, the GEA of PIG3 in AHH-1 cells and human peripheral blood lymphocytes (HPBL) induced by γ-rays (1 Gy/min) was measured at messenger RNA (mRNA) and protein levels. The GEA of PIG3 in AHH-1 cells exposed to neutron radiation (californium-252, 0.073 Gy/min) was also quantified. PIG3 was one of the seven differentially expressed genes found in the microarray analysis. The PIG3 mRNA and protein levels in AHH-1 cells were significantly increased from 1-10 Gy of γ-rays 8-72 h or 8-168 h after exposure, respectively. The enhancement was also observed in AHH-1 cells from 0.4-1.6 Gy of neutrons 48 h post-irradiation. The PIG3 mRNA levels (mRNA copy numbers) in HPBL were significantly increased from 1-8 Gy of γ-rays within 4-24 h post-irradiation, but the highest increase in signal-to-noise responsiveness is approximately two-fold, which was less than that of AHH-1 (approximately 20-fold). IR can upregulate the PIG3 gene expression in AHH-1 and HPBL in the early phase after exposure; however, the IR induced expression levels of PIG3 are greater in AHH-1 than HPBL.

  9. Inhibition of fried meat-induced colorectal DNA damage and altered systemic genotoxicity in humans by crucifera, chlorophyllin, and yogurt.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel T Shaughnessy

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Dietary exposures implicated as reducing or causing risk for colorectal cancer may reduce or cause DNA damage in colon tissue; however, no one has assessed this hypothesis directly in humans. Thus, we enrolled 16 healthy volunteers in a 4-week controlled feeding study where 8 subjects were randomly assigned to dietary regimens containing meat cooked at either low (100°C or high temperature (250°C, each for 2 weeks in a crossover design. The other 8 subjects were randomly assigned to dietary regimens containing the high-temperature meat diet alone or in combination with 3 putative mutagen inhibitors: cruciferous vegetables, yogurt, and chlorophyllin tablets, also in a crossover design. Subjects were nonsmokers, at least 18 years old, and not currently taking prescription drugs or antibiotics. We used the Salmonella assay to analyze the meat, urine, and feces for mutagenicity, and the comet assay to analyze rectal biopsies and peripheral blood lymphocytes for DNA damage. Low-temperature meat had undetectable levels of heterocyclic amines (HCAs and was not mutagenic, whereas high-temperature meat had high HCA levels and was highly mutagenic. The high-temperature meat diet increased the mutagenicity of hydrolyzed urine and feces compared to the low-temperature meat diet. The mutagenicity of hydrolyzed urine was increased nearly twofold by the inhibitor diet, indicating that the inhibitors enhanced conjugation. Inhibitors decreased significantly the mutagenicity of un-hydrolyzed and hydrolyzed feces. The diets did not alter the levels of DNA damage in non-target white blood cells, but the inhibitor diet decreased nearly twofold the DNA damage in target colorectal cells. To our knowledge, this is the first demonstration that dietary factors can reduce DNA damage in the target tissue of fried-meat associated carcinogenesis.ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00340743.

  10. Alterations of ubiquitin related proteins in the pathology and development of schizophrenia: Evidence from human and animal studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, Jessica L; Goodfellow, Frederic J; Matosin, Natalie; Snelling, Mollie K; Newell, Kelly A; Huang, Xu-Feng; Fernandez-Enright, Francesca

    2017-07-01

    Gene expression analyses in post-mortem schizophrenia brains suggest that a number of ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) genes are associated with schizophrenia; however the status of UPS proteins in the schizophrenia brain is largely unknown. Ubiquitin related proteins are inherently involved in memory, neuronal survival and morphology, which are processes implicated in neurodevelopmental disorders such as schizophrenia. We examined levels of five UPS proteins (Protein Inhibitor of Activated STAT2 [PIAS2], F-Box and Leucine rich repeat protein 21 [FBXL21], Mouse Double Minute 2 homolog [MDM2], Ubiquitin Carboxyl-Terminal Hydrolase-L1 [UCHL1] and Ubiquitin Conjugating Enzyme E2D1 [UBE2D1]) involved in these neuronal processes, within the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex of post-mortem schizophrenia subjects and matched controls (n = 30/group), in addition to across neurodevelopmental time-points (juvenile, adolescent and adult stages of life), utilizing a well-established neurodevelopmental phencyclidine (PCP) animal model of schizophrenia. We observed significant reductions in PIAS2, FBXL21 and MDM2 in schizophrenia subjects compared to controls (p-values ranging from 0.002 to 0.004). In our developmental PCP model, MDM2 protein was significantly reduced in adult PCP-treated rats compared to controls (p = 0.034). Additionally, FBXL21 (p = 0.022) and UCHL1 (p = 0.022) were significantly decreased, whilst UBE2D1 was increased (p = 0.022), in juvenile phencyclidine-treated rats compared to controls. This is the first study reporting alterations of UPS proteins in post-mortem human schizophrenia subjects and in a neurodevelopmental model of schizophrenia. The findings from this study provide strong support for a role of these UPS proteins in the pathology and development of schizophrenia. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Extracellular matrix collagen alters cell proliferation and cell cycle progression of human uterine leiomyoma smooth muscle cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koohestani, Faezeh; Braundmeier, Andrea G; Mahdian, Arash; Seo, Jane; Bi, JiaJia; Nowak, Romana A

    2013-01-01

    Uterine leiomyomas (ULs) are benign tumors occurring in the majority of reproductive aged women. Despite the high prevalence of these tumors, little is known about their etiology. A hallmark of ULs is the excessive deposition of extracellular matrix (ECM), primarily collagens. Collagens are known to modulate cell behavior and function singularly or through interactions with integrins and growth factor-mediated mitogenic pathways. To better understand the pathogenesis of ULs and the role of ECM collagens in their growth, we investigated the interaction of leiomyoma smooth muscle cells (LSMCs) with two different forms of collagen, non-polymerized collagen (monomeric) and polymerized collagen (fibrillar), in the absence or presence of platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF), an abundant growth factor in ULs. Primary cultures of human LSMCS from symptomatic patients were grown on these two different collagen matrices and their morphology, cytoskeletal organization, cellular proliferation, and signaling pathways were evaluated. Our results showed that LSMCs had distinct morphologies on the different collagen matrices and their basal as well as PDGF-stimulated proliferation varied on these matrices. These differences in proliferation were accompanied by changes in cell cycle progression and p21, an inhibitory cell cycle protein. In addition we found alterations in the phosphorylation of focal adhesion kinase, cytoskeletal reorganization, and activation of the mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathway. In conclusion, our results demonstrate a direct effect of ECM on the proliferation of LSMCs through interplay between the collagen matrix and the PDGF-stimulated MAPK pathway. In addition, these findings will pave the way for identifying novel therapeutic approaches for ULs that target ECM proteins and their signaling pathways in ULs.

  12. Mycobacterium tuberculosis Cell Wall Fragments Released upon Bacterial Contact with the Human Lung Mucosa Alter the Neutrophil Response to Infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scordo, Julia M; Arcos, Jesús; Kelley, Holden V; Diangelo, Lauren; Sasindran, Smitha J; Youngmin, Ellie; Wewers, Mark D; Wang, Shu-Hua; Balada-Llasat, Joan-Miquel; Torrelles, Jordi B

    2017-01-01

    In 2016, the World Health Organization reported that one person dies of tuberculosis (TB) every 21 s. A host environment that Mycobacterium tuberculosis ( M.tb ) finds during its route of infection is the lung mucosa bathing the alveolar space located in the deepest regions of the lungs. We published that human lung mucosa, or alveolar lining fluid (ALF), contains an array of hydrolytic enzymes that can significantly alter the M.tb surface during infection by cleaving off parts of its cell wall. This interaction results in two different outcomes: modifications on the M.tb cell wall surface and release of M.tb cell wall fragments into the environment. Typically, one of the first host immune cells at the site of M.tb infection is the neutrophil. Neutrophils can mount an extracellular and intracellular innate immune response to M.tb during infection. We hypothesized that exposure of neutrophils to ALF-induced M.tb released cell wall fragments would prime neutrophils to control M.tb infection better. Our results show that ALF fragments activate neutrophils leading to an increased production of inflammatory cytokines and oxidative radicals. However, neutrophil exposure to these fragments reduces production of chemoattractants (i.e., interleukin-8), and degranulation, with the subsequent reduction of myeloperoxidase release, and does not induce cytotoxicity. Unexpectedly, these ALF fragment-derived modulations in neutrophil activity do not further, either positively or negatively, contribute to the intracellular control of M.tb growth during infection. However, secreted products from neutrophils primed with ALF fragments are capable of regulating the activity of resting macrophages. These results indicate that ALF-induced M.tb fragments could further contribute to the control of M.tb growth and local killing by resident neutrophils by switching on the total oxidative response and limiting migration of neutrophils to the infection site.

  13. Rapid intravenous infusion of 20 mL/kg saline alters the distribution of perfusion in healthy supine humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, A C; Sá, R C; Barash, I A; Holverda, S; Buxton, R B; Hopkins, S R; Prisk, G K

    2012-03-15

    Rapid intravenous saline infusion, a model meant to replicate the initial changes leading to pulmonary interstitial edema, increases pulmonary arterial pressure in humans. We hypothesized that this would alter lung perfusion distribution. Six healthy subjects (29 ± 6 years) underwent magnetic resonance imaging to quantify perfusion using arterial spin labeling. Regional proton density was measured using a fast-gradient echo sequence, allowing blood delivered to the slice to be normalized for density and quantified in mL/min/g. Contributions from flow in large conduit vessels were minimized using a flow cutoff value (blood delivered > 35% maximum in mL/min/cm(3)) in order to obtain an estimate of blood delivered to the capillary bed (perfusion). Images were acquired supine at baseline, after infusion of 20 mL/kg saline, and after a short upright recovery period for a single sagittal slice in the right lung during breath-holds at functional residual capacity. Thoracic fluid content measured by impedance cardiography was elevated post-infusion by up to 13% (pchanges in conduit vessels, there were no significant changes in perfusion in dependent lung following infusion (7.8 ± 1.9 mL/min/g baseline, 7.9 ± 2.0 post, 8.5 ± 2.1 recovery, p=0.36). There were no significant changes in lung density. These data suggest that saline infusion increased perfusion to nondependent lung, consistent with an increase in intravascular pressures. Dependent lung may have been "protected" from increases in perfusion following infusion due to gravitational compression of the pulmonary vasculature. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. From "Forest Fires" and "Hunting" to Disturbing "Habitats" and "Food Chains": Do Young Children Come Up with Any Ecological Interpretations of Human Interventions within a Forest?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ergazaki, Marida; Andriotou, Eirini

    2010-01-01

    This study aims at highlighting young children's reasoning about human interventions within a forest ecosystem. Our focus is particularly set on whether preschoolers are able to come up with any basic ecological interpretations of human actions upon forest plants or animals and how. Conducting individual, semi-structured interviews with 70…

  15. Benzyl isothiocyanate alters the gene expression with cell cycle regulation and cell death in human brain glioblastoma GBM 8401 cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Nou-Ying; Chueh, Fu-Shin; Yu, Chien-Chih; Liao, Ching-Lung; Lin, Jen-Jyh; Hsia, Te-Chun; Wu, King-Chuen; Liu, Hsin-Chung; Lu, Kung-Wen; Chung, Jing-Gung

    2016-04-01

    Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a highly malignant devastating brain tumor in adults. Benzyl isothiocyanate (BITC) is one of the isothiocyanates that have been shown to induce human cancer cell apoptosis and cell cycle arrest. Herein, the effect of BITC on cell viability and apoptotic cell death and the genetic levels of human brain glioblastoma GBM 8401 cells in vitro were investigated. We found that BITC induced cell morphological changes, decreased cell viability and the induction of cell apoptosis in GBM 8401 cells was time-dependent. cDNA microarray was used to examine the effects of BITC on GBM 8401 cells and we found that numerous genes associated with cell death and cell cycle regulation in GBM 8401 cells were altered after BITC treatment. The results show that expression of 317 genes was upregulated, and two genes were associated with DNA damage, the DNA-damage-inducible transcript 3 (DDIT3) was increased 3.66-fold and the growth arrest and DNA-damage-inducible α (GADD45A) was increased 2.34-fold. We also found that expression of 182 genes was downregulated and two genes were associated with receptor for cell responses to stimuli, the EGF containing fibulin-like extracellular matrix protein 1 (EFEMP1) was inhibited 2.01-fold and the TNF receptor-associated protein 1 (TRAP1) was inhibited 2.08-fold. BITC inhibited seven mitochondria ribosomal genes, the mitochondrial ribosomal protein; tumor protein D52 (MRPS28) was inhibited 2.06-fold, the mitochondria ribosomal protein S2 (MRPS2) decreased 2.07-fold, the mitochondria ribosomal protein L23 (MRPL23) decreased 2.08-fold, the mitochondria ribosomal protein S2 (MRPS2) decreased 2.07-fold, the mitochondria ribosomal protein S12 (MRPS12) decreased 2.08-fold, the mitochondria ribosomal protein L12 (MRPL12) decreased 2.25-fold and the mitochondria ribosomal protein S34 (MRPS34) was decreased 2.30-fold in GBM 8401 cells. These changes of gene expression can provide the effects of BITC on the genetic level and are

  16. Altered ion transport in normal human bronchial epithelial cells following exposure to chemically distinct metal welding fume particles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fedan, Jeffrey S., E-mail: jsf2@cdc.gov; Thompson, Janet A.; Meighan, Terence G.; Zeidler-Erdely, Patti C.; Antonini, James M.

    2017-07-01

    Welding fume inhalation causes pulmonary toxicity, including susceptibility to infection. We hypothesized that airway epithelial ion transport is a target of fume toxicity, and investigated the effects of fume particulates from manual metal arc-stainless steel (MMA-SS) and gas metal arc-mild steel (GMA-MS) on ion transport in normal human bronchial epithelium (NHBE) cultured in air-interface. MMA-SS particles, more soluble than GMA-MS particles, contain Cr, Ni, Fe and Mn; GMA-MS particles contain Fe and Mn. MMA-SS or GMA-MS particles (0.0167–166.7 μg/cm{sup 2}) were applied apically to NHBEs. After 18 h transepithelial potential difference (V{sub t}), resistance (R{sub t}), and short circuit current (I{sub sc}) were measured. Particle effects on Na{sup +} and Cl¯ channels and the Na{sup +},K{sup +},2Cl¯-cotransporter were evaluated using amiloride (apical), 5-nitro-2-[(3-phenylpropyl)amino]benzoic acid (NPPB, apical), and bumetanide (basolateral), respectively. MMA-SS (0.0167–16.7 μg/cm{sup 2}) increased basal V{sub t}. Only 16.7 μg/cm{sup 2} GMA-MS increased basal V{sub t} significantly. MMA-SS or GMA-MS exposure potentiated I{sub sc} responses (decreases) to amiloride and bumetanide, while not affecting those to NPPB, GMA-MS to a lesser degree than MMA-SS. Variable effects on R{sub t} were observed in response to amiloride, and bumetanide. Generally, MMA-SS was more potent in altering responses to amiloride and bumetanide than GMA-MS. Hyperpolarization occurred in the absence of LDH release, but decreases in V{sub t}, R{sub t}, and I{sub sc} at higher fume particulate doses accompanied LDH release, to a greater extent for MMA-SS. Thus, Na{sup +} transport and Na{sup +},K{sup +},2Cl¯-cotransport are affected by fume exposure; MMA-MS is more potent than GMA-MS. Enhanced Na{sup +} absorption and decreased airway surface liquid could compromise defenses against infection. - Highlights: • Welding fume particle toxicity was investigated in human bronchial

  17. Disturbance to desert soil ecosystems contributes to dust-mediated impacts at regional scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pointing, Stephen B.; Belnap, Jayne

    2014-01-01

    This review considers the regional scale of impacts arising from disturbance to desert soil ecosystems. Deserts occupy over one-third of the Earth’s terrestrial surface, and biological soil covers are critical to stabilization of desert soils. Disturbance to these can contribute to massive destabilization and mobilization of dust. This results in dust storms that are transported across inter-continental distances where they have profound negative impacts. Dust deposition at high altitudes causes radiative forcing of snowpack that leads directly to altered hydrological regimes and changes to freshwater biogeochemistry. In marine environments dust deposition impacts phytoplankton diazotrophy, and causes coral reef senescence. Increasingly dust is also recognized as a threat to human health.

  18. Fine-Scale Evaluation of Giant Panda Habitats and Countermeasures against the Future Impacts of Climate Change and Human Disturbance (2015–2050: A Case Study in Ya’an, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jing Zhen

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The accelerating impact of climate change on giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca habitats have become an international research topic. Recently, many studies have also focused on medium-sized mountain ranges or entire giant panda habitats to predict how habitats will change as the climate warms, but few say in detail what to do or where to focus efforts. To fill this gap, this paper presents a new method to take comprehensive, fine-scale evaluations incorporating climate change, human disturbance, and current conservation networks and translate them into practical countermeasures in order to help decision-makers set priority regions for conservation. This study looked at the core area of the Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO World Natural Heritage site, namely Ya’an Prefecture, as a case study. The research employs the Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt modeling algorithm to analyze how climate change will affect the habitats by 2050 under two scenarios: only considering the influence of climate change, and thinking about the coupled influence of climate change and human disturbance together. The results showed the following: (1 only considering climate change, the overall habitat that can be used by giant pandas in this region will increase, which differs from most of the previous results showing a decrease; (2 the new suitable habitat will shift westward, northward and eastward in this region; (3 conversely, the suitable habitat will be significantly reduced (about 58.56% and fragmentized when taking into account human disturbance factors; (4 at present, the three small nature reserves are far from each other and cannot cover the present habitat well nor protect the potentially suitable habitats. Based on the comprehensive analysis of habitat shifts and our two field investigations, we suggest two regions that can be expanded into the conservation network to contain more potentially

  19. Exposure to perfluorononanoic acid combined with a low-dose mixture of 14 human-relevant compounds disturbs energy/lipid homeostasis in rats

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skov, Kasper; Kongsbak, Kristine Grønning; Hadrup, Niels

    2015-01-01

    , whereas effects on lipid metabolism in the liver were mainly driven by PFNA. This study verifies that a chemical mixture given at high-end human exposure levels can affect lipid homeostasis and that the combined use of metabolomics and transcriptomics can provide complimentary information allowing......Humans are constantly exposed to a significant number of compounds and many are readily detected in human body fluids. Worryingly, several of these compounds are either suspected to be, or have already been shown to be harmful to humans either individually or in combination. However, the potential...... consequences of low-dose exposure to complex mixtures remain poorly understood. We have profiled the effects on rat blood plasma and liver homeostasis using metabolomics and transcriptomics following 2-week exposure to either a mixture of 14 common chemicals (Mix), perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA) at low (0...

  20. Postoperative circadian disturbances

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gögenur, Ismail

    2010-01-01

    ) in urine the first night after both minor and major surgery. This delay after major surgery was correlated to the duration of surgery. The amplitude in the melatonin rhythm was unchanged the first night but increased in the second night after major surgery. The amplitude in AMT6s was reduced the first...... night after minimally invasive surgery. The core body temperature rhythm was disturbed after both major and minor surgery. There was a change in the sleep wake cycle with a significantly increased duration of REM-sleep in the day and evening time after major surgery compared with preoperatively....... There was also a shift in the autonomic nervous balance after major surgery with a significantly increased number of myocardial ischaemic episodes during the nighttime period. The circadian activity rhythm was also disturbed after both minor and major surgery. The daytime AMT6s excretion in urine after major...

  1. 300 Area Disturbance Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    LL Hale; MK Wright; NA Cadoret

    1999-01-07

    The objective of this study was to define areas of previous disturbance in the 300 Area of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Hanford Site to eliminate these areas from the cultural resource review process, reduce cultural resource monitoring costs, and allow cultural resource specialists to focus on areas where subsurface disturbance is minimal or nonexistent. Research into available sources suggests that impacts from excavations have been significant wherever the following construction activities have occurred: building basements and pits, waste ponds, burial grounds, trenches, installation of subsurface pipelines, power poles, water hydrants, and well construction. Beyond the areas just mentioned, substrates in the' 300 Area consist of a complex, multidimen- sional mosaic composed of undisturbed stratigraphy, backfill, and disturbed sediments; Four Geographic Information System (GIS) maps were created to display known areas of disturbance in the 300 Area. These maps contain information gleaned from a variety of sources, but the primary sources include the Hanford GIS database system, engineer drawings, and historic maps. In addition to these maps, several assumptions can be made about areas of disturbance in the 300 Area as a result of this study: o o Buried pipelines are not always located where they are mapped. As a result, cultural resource monitors or specialists should not depend on maps depicting subsurface pipelines for accurate locations of previous disturbance. Temporary roads built in the early 1940s were placed on layers of sand and gravel 8 to 12 in. thick. Given this information, it is likely that substrates beneath these early roads are only minimally disturbed. Building foundations ranged from concrete slabs no more than 6 to 8 in. thick to deeply excavated pits and basements. Buildings constructed with slab foundations are more numerous than may be expected, and minimally disturbed substrates may be expected in these locations. Historic

  2. Rehabilitation of disturbed land

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bell, L.C. [Australian Centre for Minesite Rehabilitation Research, Kenmore, Qld. (Australia)

    1996-12-31

    This chapter discusses the objectives of rehabilitation of lands in Australian disturbed by mining. It gives advice on rehabilitation planning and outlines the factors influencing post-mining land use and rehabilitation strategies, including climate, topography, hydrology, properties of soils, overburden and mineral processing wastes, flora and fauna and social considerations. Finally, the key elements of a rehabilitation plan are discussed, namely: landscape reconstruction; selective handling of overburden; and establishment and maintenance of a vegetative cover. 12 figs., 1 tab.

  3. Frequent loss of heterozygosity and altered expression of the candidate tumor suppressor gene 'FAT' in human astrocytic tumors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chosdol, Kunzang; Misra, Anjan; Puri, Sachin; Srivastava, Tapasya; Chattopadhyay, Parthaprasad; Sarkar, Chitra; Mahapatra, Ashok K; Sinha, Subrata

    2009-01-01

    We had earlier used the comparison of RAPD (Random Amplification of Polymorphic DNA) DNA fingerprinting profiles of tumor and corresponding normal DNA to identify genetic alterations in primary human glial tumors. This has the advantage that DNA fingerprinting identifies the genetic alterations in a manner not biased for locus. In this study we used RAPD-PCR to identify novel genomic alterations in the astrocytic tumors of WHO grade II (Low Grade Diffuse Astrocytoma) and WHO Grade IV (Glioblastoma Multiforme). Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) of the altered region was studied by microsatellite and Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP) markers. Expression study of the gene identified at the altered locus was done by semi-quantitative reverse-transcriptase-PCR (RT-PCR). Bands consistently altered in the RAPD profile of tumor DNA in a significant proportion of tumors were identified. One such 500 bp band, that was absent in the RAPD profile of 33% (4/12) of the grade II astrocytic tumors, was selected for further study. Its sequence corresponded with a region of FAT, a putative tumor suppressor gene initially identified in Drosophila. Fifty percent of a set of 40 tumors, both grade II and IV, were shown to have Loss of Heterozygosity (LOH) at this locus by microsatellite (intragenic) and by SNP markers. Semi-quantitative RT-PCR showed low FAT mRNA levels in a major subset of tumors. These results point to a role of the FAT in astrocytic tumorigenesis and demonstrate the use of RAPD analysis in identifying specific alterations in astrocytic tumors

  4. Altered ion transport in normal human bronchial epithelial cells following exposure to chemically distinct metal welding fume particles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fedan, Jeffrey S; Thompson, Janet A; Meighan, Terence G; Zeidler-Erdely, Patti C; Antonini, James M

    2017-07-01

    Welding fume inhalation causes pulmonary toxicity, including susceptibility to infection. We hypothesized that airway epithelial ion transport is a target of fume toxicity, and investigated the effects of fume particulates from manual metal arc-stainless steel (MMA-SS) and gas metal arc-mild steel (GMA-MS) on ion transport in normal human bronchial epithelium (NHBE) cultured in air-interface. MMA-SS particles, more soluble than GMA-MS particles, contain Cr, Ni, Fe and Mn; GMA-MS particles contain Fe and Mn. MMA-SS or GMA-MS particles (0.0167-166.7μg/cm 2 ) were applied apically to NHBEs. After 18h transepithelial potential difference (V t ), resistance (R t ), and short circuit current (I sc ) were measured. Particle effects on Na + and Cl¯ channels and the Na + ,K + ,2Cl¯-cotransporter were evaluated using amiloride (apical), 5-nitro-2-[(3-phenylpropyl)amino]benzoic acid (NPPB, apical), and bumetanide (basolateral), respectively. MMA-SS (0.0167-16.7μg/cm 2 ) increased basal V t . Only 16.7μg/cm 2 GMA-MS increased basal V t significantly. MMA-SS or GMA-MS exposure potentiated I sc responses (decreases) to amiloride and bumetanide, while not affecting those to NPPB, GMA-MS to a lesser degree than MMA-SS. Variable effects on R t were observed in response to amiloride, and bumetanide. Generally, MMA-SS was more potent in altering responses to amiloride and bumetanide than GMA-MS. Hyperpolarization occurred in the absence of LDH release, but decreases in V t , R t , and I sc at higher fume particulate doses accompanied LDH release, to a greater extent for MMA-SS. Thus, Na + transport and Na + ,K + ,2Cl¯-cotransport are affected by fume exposure; MMA-MS is more potent than GMA-MS. Enhanced Na + absorption and decreased airway surface liquid could compromise defenses against infection. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  5. Neuroimmune mechanisms of behavioral alterations in a syngeneic murine model of human papilloma virus-related head and neck cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vichaya, Elisabeth G; Vermeer, Daniel W; Christian, Diana L; Molkentine, Jessica M; Mason, Kathy A; Lee, John H; Dantzer, Robert

    2017-05-01

    Patients with cancer often experience a high symptom burden prior to the start of treatment. As disease- and treatment-related neurotoxicities appear to be additive, targeting disease-related symptoms may attenuate overall symptom burden for cancer patients and improve the tolerability of treatment. It has been hypothesized that disease-related symptoms are a consequence of tumor-induced inflammation. We tested this hypothesis using a syngeneic heterotopic murine model of human papilloma virus (HPV)-related head and neck cancer. This model has the advantage of being mildly aggressive and not causing cachexia or weight loss. We previously showed that this tumor leads to increased IL-6, IL-1β, and TNF-α expression in the liver and increased IL-1β expression in the brain. The current study confirmed these features and demonstrated that the tumor itself exhibits high inflammatory cytokine expression (e.g., IL-6, IL-1β, and TNF-α) compared to healthy tissue. While there is a clear relationship between cytokine levels and behavioral deficits in this model, the behavioral changes are surprisingly mild. Therefore, we sought to confirm the relationship between behavior and inflammation by amplifying the effect using a low dose of lipopolysaccharide (LPS, 0.1mg/kg). In tumor-bearing mice LPS induced deficits in nest building, tail suspension, and locomotor activity approximately 24h after LPS. However, these mice did not display an exacerbation of LPS-induced weight loss, anorexia, or anhedonia. Further, while heightened serum IL-6 was observed there was minimal priming of liver or brain cytokine expression. Next we sought to inhibit tumor-induced burrowing deficits by reducing inflammation using minocycline. Minocycline (∼50mg/kg/day in drinking water) was able to attenuate tumor-induced inflammation and burrowing deficits. These data provide evidence in favor of an inflammatory-like mechanism for the behavioral alterations associated with tumor growth in a syngeneic

  6. Rice Bran and Probiotics Alter the Porcine Large Intestine and Serum Metabolomes for Protection against Human Rotavirus Diarrhea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth P. Ryan

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Human rotavirus (HRV is a leading cause of severe childhood diarrhea, and there is limited vaccine efficacy in the developing world. Neonatal gnotobiotic pigs consuming a prophylactic synbiotic combination of probiotics and rice bran (Pro+RB did not exhibit HRV diarrhea after challenge. Multiple immune, gut barrier protective, and anti-diarrheal mechanisms contributed to the prophylactic efficacy of Pro+RB when compared to probiotics (Pro alone. In order to understand the molecular signature associated with diarrheal protection by Pro+RB, a global non-targeted metabolomics approach was applied to investigate the large intestinal contents and serum of neonatal gnotobiotic pigs. The ultra-high performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry platform revealed significantly different metabolites (293 in LIC and 84 in serum in the pigs fed Pro+RB compared to Pro, and many of these metabolites were lipids and amino acid/peptides. Lipid metabolites included 2-oleoylglycerol (increased 293.40-fold in LIC of Pro+RB, p = 3.04E-10, which can modulate gastric emptying, andhyodeoxycholate (decreased 0.054-fold in the LIC of Pro+RB, p = 0.0040 that can increase colonic mucus production to improve intestinal barrier function. Amino acid metabolites included cysteine (decreased 0.40-fold in LIC, p = 0.033, and 0.62-fold in serum, p = 0.014 of Pro+RB, which has been found to reduce inflammation, lower oxidative stress and modulate mucosal immunity, and histamine (decreased 0.18-fold in LIC, p = 0.00030, of Pro+RB and 1.57-fold in serum, p = 0.043, which modulates local and systemic inflammatory responses as well as influences the enteric nervous system. Alterations to entire LIC and serum metabolic pathways further contributed to the anti-diarrheal and anti-viral activities of Pro+RB such as sphingolipid, mono/diacylglycerol, fatty acid, secondary bile acid, and polyamine metabolism. Sphingolipid and long chain fatty acid profiles influenced the

  7. Climate change and forest disturbances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Virginia H. Dale; Linda A. Joyce; Steve McNulty; Ronald P. Neilson; Matthew P. Ayres; Michael D. Flannigan; Paul J. Hanson; Lloyd C. Irland; Ariel E. Lugo; Chris J. Peterson; Daniel Simberloff; Frederick J. Swanson; Brian J. Stocks; Michael Wotton

    2001-01-01

    This article examines how eight disturbances influence forest structure, composition, and function, and how climate change may influence the severity, frequency, and magnitude of disturbances to forests. We focus on examples from the United States, although these influences occur worldwide. We also consider options for coping with disturbance under changing climate....

  8. Epigallocatechin Gallate-Mediated Alteration of the MicroRNA Expression Profile in 5α-Dihydrotestosterone-Treated Human Dermal Papilla Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Shanghun; Kim, Karam; Lee, Myung Joo; Lee, Jeongju; Choi, Sungjin; Kim, Kyung-Suk; Ko, Jung-Min; Han, Hyunjoo; Kim, Su Young; Youn, Hae Jeong; Ahn, Kyu Joong; An, In-Sook; An, Sungkwan; Cha, Hwa Jun

    2016-06-01

    Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) induces androgenic alopecia by shortening the hair follicle growth phase, resulting in hair loss. We previously demonstrated how changes in the microRNA (miRNA) expression profile influenced DHT-mediated cell death, cell cycle arrest, cell viability, the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), and senescence. Protective effects against DHT have not, however, been elucidated at the genome level. We showed that epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a major component of green tea, protects DHT-induced cell death by regulating the cellular miRNA expression profile. We used a miRNA microarray to identify miRNA expression levels in human dermal papilla cells (DPCs). We investigated whether the miRNA expression influenced the protective effects of EGCG against DHT-induced cell death, growth arrest, intracellular ROS levels, and senescence. EGCG protected against the effects of DHT by altering the miRNA expression profile in human DPCs. In addition, EGCG attenuated DHT-mediated cell death and growth arrest and decreased intracellular ROS levels and senescence. A bioinformatics analysis elucidated the relationship between the altered miRNA expression and EGCG-mediated protective effects against DHT. Overall, our results suggest that EGCG ameliorates the negative effects of DHT by altering the miRNA expression profile in human DPCs.

  9. Handling process disturbances in petroleum production

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sten, T; Bodsberg, L; Ingstad, O; Ulleberg, T

    1988-06-01

    Factors of importance in successful handling of major disturbances and crisis situations in petroleum production are discussed. Case studies based on interviews, questionnaires and systematic observations have been undertaken to identify critical factors in human computer design, in operator competence and attitudes and in work organization. It is shown that certain features of the humancomputer interaction become critical when serious disturbances are encountered. Likewise focusing on requirements during disturbances in particular has highlighted some new aspects of operator competence and of the work organization. The results are considered to be useful input to safety management in petroleum process plants, in formation of design specifications and in identifying need for further research regarding safety in offshore production.

  10. Identification and Characterization of Disturbed Alder Sites on Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Tande, Gerald

    2001-01-01

    Vegetation data were collected to identify and characterize disturbed alder (Alnus spp.) areas and provide an ArcView GIS layer for specific sites of alder encroachment likely due to human disturbance...

  11. Effects of climate change on ecological disturbance in the northern Rockies