WorldWideScience

Sample records for integrative biology evidence

  1. Integrating chemical and biological status assessment: Assembling lines of evidence for the evaluation of river ecosystem risk

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Munoz Gracia, Isabel; Sabater, Sergi

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes various approaches to evaluating ecological risk in rivers affected by multiple chemical stressors, with emphasis on biofilm and invertebrate community responses. Metrics should be considered as different lines of evidence that, when weighted, form an advanced weight of evidence approach to establishing the environmental risk on a basin scale. Combination of field surveys to obtain observational data of communities, in situ experiments, toxicological sediment tests and a good chemical description of the medium (water and sediment) helps give an integrative view of the chemical and biological state of a river ecosystem. The greater and more distinct the variables used, the greater is our ability to identify the effects of major stressors impairing communities. Weight of evidence is an integrative methodology for tackling the challenge of determining causal relations and applying this knowledge in the decision-making processes of river management.

  2. Integrative Radiation Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barcellos-Hoff, Mary Helen [New York University School of Medicine, NY (United States)

    2015-02-27

    We plan to study tissue-level mechanisms important to human breast radiation carcinogenesis. We propose that the cell biology of irradiated tissues reveals a coordinated multicellular damage response program in which individual cell contributions are primarily directed towards suppression of carcinogenesis and reestablishment of homeostasis. We identified transforming growth factor β1 (TGFβ) as a pivotal signal. Notably, we have discovered that TGFβ suppresses genomic instability by controlling the intrinsic DNA damage response and centrosome integrity. However, TGFβ also mediates disruption of microenvironment interactions, which drive epithelial to mesenchymal transition in irradiated human mammary epithelial cells. This apparent paradox of positive and negative controls by TGFβ is the topic of the present proposal. First, we postulate that these phenotypes manifest differentially following fractionated or chronic exposures; second, that the interactions of multiple cell types in tissues modify the responses evident in this single cell type culture models. The goals are to: 1) study the effect of low dose rate and fractionated radiation exposure in combination with TGFβ on the irradiated phenotype and genomic instability of non-malignant human epithelial cells; and 2) determine whether stromal-epithelial interactions suppress the irradiated phenotype in cell culture and the humanized mammary mouse model. These data will be used to 3) develop a systems biology model that integrates radiation effects across multiple levels of tissue organization and time. Modeling multicellular radiation responses coordinated via extracellular signaling could have a significant impact on the extrapolation of human health risks from high dose to low dose/rate radiation exposure.

  3. Integrative radiation systems biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Unger, Kristian

    2014-01-01

    Maximisation of the ratio of normal tissue preservation and tumour cell reduction is the main concept of radiotherapy alone or combined with chemo-, immuno- or biologically targeted therapy. The foremost parameter influencing this ratio is radiation sensitivity and its modulation towards a more efficient killing of tumour cells and a better preservation of normal tissue at the same time is the overall aim of modern therapy schemas. Nevertheless, this requires a deep understanding of the molecular mechanisms of radiation sensitivity in order to identify its key players as potential therapeutic targets. Moreover, the success of conventional approaches that tried to statistically associate altered radiation sensitivity with any molecular phenotype such as gene expression proofed to be somewhat limited since the number of clinically used targets is rather sparse. However, currently a paradigm shift is taking place from pure frequentistic association analysis to the rather holistic systems biology approach that seeks to mathematically model the system to be investigated and to allow the prediction of an altered phenotype as the function of one single or a signature of biomarkers. Integrative systems biology also considers the data from different molecular levels such as the genome, transcriptome or proteome in order to partially or fully comprehend the causal chain of molecular mechanisms. An example for the application of this concept currently carried out at the Clinical Cooperation Group “Personalized Radiotherapy in Head and Neck Cancer” of the Helmholtz-Zentrum München and the LMU Munich is described. This review article strives for providing a compact overview on the state of the art of systems biology, its actual challenges, potential applications, chances and limitations in radiation oncology research working towards improved personalised therapy concepts using this relatively new methodology

  4. A "weight of evidence" approach for the integration of environmental "triad" data to assess ecological risk and biological vulnerability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dagnino, Alessandro; Sforzini, Susanna; Dondero, Francesco; Fenoglio, Stefano; Bona, Elisa; Jensen, John; Viarengo, Aldo

    2008-07-01

    A new Expert Decision Support System (EDSS) that can integrate Triad data for assessing environmental risk and biological vulnerability at contaminated sites has been developed. Starting with ecosystem relevance, the EDSS assigns different weights to the results obtained from Triad disciplines. The following parameters have been employed: 1) chemical soil analyses (revealing the presence of potentially dangerous substances), 2) ecotoxicological bioassays (utilizing classical endpoints such as survival and reproduction rates), 3) biomarkers (showing sublethal pollutant effects), and 4) ecological parameters (assessing changes in community structure and functions). For each Triad discipline, the EDSS compares the data obtained at the studied field sites with reference values and calculates different 0-1 indexes (e.g., Chemical Risk Index, Ecotoxicological Risk Index, and Ecological Risk Index). The EDSS output consists of 3 indexes: 1) Environmental Risk index (EnvRI), quantifying the levels of biological damage at population-community level, 2) Biological Vulnerability Index (BVI), assessing the potential threats to biological equilibriums, and 3) Genotoxicity Index (GTI), screening genotoxicity effects. The EDSS has been applied in the integration of a battery of Triad data obtained during the European Union-funded Life Intervention in the Fraschetta Area (LINFA) project, which has been carried out in order to estimate the potential risk from soils of a highly anthropized area (Alessandria, Italy) mainly impacted by deposition of atmospheric pollutants. Results obtained during 4 seasonal sampling campaigns (2004-2005) show maximum values of EnvRI in sites A and B (characterized by industrial releases) and lower levels in site D (affected by vehicular traffic emissions). All 3 potentially polluted sites have shown high levels of BVI and GTI, suggesting a general change from reference conditions (site C).

  5. Integrated Biological Control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    JOHNSON, A.R.

    2002-01-01

    Biological control is any activity taken to prevent, limit, clean up, or remediate potential environmental, health and safety, or workplace quality impacts from plants, animals, or microorganisms. At Hanford the principal emphasis of biological control is to prevent the transport of radioactive contamination by biological vectors (plants, animals, or microorganisms), and where necessary, control and clean up resulting contamination. Other aspects of biological control at Hanford include industrial weed control (e.g.; tumbleweeds), noxious weed control (invasive, non-native plant species), and pest control (undesirable animals such as rodents and stinging insects; and microorganisms such as molds that adversely affect the quality of the workplace environment). Biological control activities may be either preventive (apriori) or in response to existing contamination spread (aposteriori). Surveillance activities, including ground, vegetation, flying insect, and other surveys, and apriori control actions, such as herbicide spraying and placing biological barriers, are important in preventing radioactive contamination spread. If surveillance discovers that biological vectors have spread radioactive contamination, aposteriori control measures, such as fixing contamination, followed by cleanup and removal of the contamination to an approved disposal location are typical response functions. In some cases remediation following the contamination cleanup and removal is necessary. Biological control activities for industrial weeds, noxious weeds and pests have similar modes of prevention and response

  6. INTEGRATING CHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL STATUS ASSESSMENT: ASSEMBLING LINES OF EVIDENCE FOR THE EVALUATION OF RIVER ECOSYSTEM RISK

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabel Muñoz Gracia

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Este trabajo describe diferentes aproximaciones para la evaluación del riesgo ecológico en ríos afectados por múltiple contaminación química, con énfasis en la respuesta de las comunidades del biofilm e invertebrados bentónicos. Las métricas descritas se considerarían como diferentes líneas de evidencia que convenientemente ponderadas formarían un sistema de decisión ("weight of evidence" para establecer el riesgo ambiental a escala de cuenca. La combinación de trabajo de campo para obtener datos de la comunidad biológica, experimentos in situ, test de exposición en sedimentos, y una buena caracterización química del medio (agua y sedimento, ayuda a tener un resultado integrado del estado biológico y químico del ecosistema fluvial. Cuantas más variables se incorporen, mejor se identificarán los efectos de las presiones químicas en el deterioro de la comunidad. Esta es una metodología integradora que permite abordar el reto de determinar las relaciones causales y aplicar este conocimiento en el proceso de toma de decisión en la gestión de las cuencas fluviales.

  7. An Integrated Approach to Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education; Volume 16; Issue 8. An Integrated Approach to Biology. Aniket Bhattacharya. General Article Volume 16 Issue 8 August 2011 pp 742-753. Fulltext. Click here to view fulltext PDF. Permanent link: https://www.ias.ac.in/article/fulltext/reso/016/08/0742-0753 ...

  8. Integrative biological analysis for neuropsychopharmacology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmett, Mark R; Kroes, Roger A; Moskal, Joseph R; Conrad, Charles A; Priebe, Waldemar; Laezza, Fernanda; Meyer-Baese, Anke; Nilsson, Carol L

    2014-01-01

    Although advances in psychotherapy have been made in recent years, drug discovery for brain diseases such as schizophrenia and mood disorders has stagnated. The need for new biomarkers and validated therapeutic targets in the field of neuropsychopharmacology is widely unmet. The brain is the most complex part of human anatomy from the standpoint of number and types of cells, their interconnections, and circuitry. To better meet patient needs, improved methods to approach brain studies by understanding functional networks that interact with the genome are being developed. The integrated biological approaches--proteomics, transcriptomics, metabolomics, and glycomics--have a strong record in several areas of biomedicine, including neurochemistry and neuro-oncology. Published applications of an integrated approach to projects of neurological, psychiatric, and pharmacological natures are still few but show promise to provide deep biological knowledge derived from cells, animal models, and clinical materials. Future studies that yield insights based on integrated analyses promise to deliver new therapeutic targets and biomarkers for personalized medicine.

  9. Integrating phosphoproteomics in systems biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu Liu

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Phosphorylation of serine, threonine and tyrosine plays significant roles in cellular signal transduction and in modifying multiple protein functions. Phosphoproteins are coordinated and regulated by a network of kinases, phosphatases and phospho-binding proteins, which modify the phosphorylation states, recognize unique phosphopeptides, or target proteins for degradation. Detailed and complete information on the structure and dynamics of these networks is required to better understand fundamental mechanisms of cellular processes and diseases. High-throughput technologies have been developed to investigate phosphoproteomes in model organisms and human diseases. Among them, mass spectrometry (MS-based technologies are the major platforms and have been widely applied, which has led to explosive growth of phosphoproteomic data in recent years. New bioinformatics tools are needed to analyze and make sense of these data. Moreover, most research has focused on individual phosphoproteins and kinases. To gain a more complete knowledge of cellular processes, systems biology approaches, including pathways and networks modeling, have to be applied to integrate all components of the phosphorylation machinery, including kinases, phosphatases, their substrates, and phospho-binding proteins. This review presents the latest developments of bioinformatics methods and attempts to apply systems biology to analyze phosphoproteomics data generated by MS-based technologies. Challenges and future directions in this field will be also discussed.

  10. Biology as an Integrating Natural Science Domain

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education; Volume 13; Issue 3. Biology as an Integrating Natural Science Domain: A Proposal for BSc (Hons) in Integrated Biology. Kambadur Muralidhar. Classroom Volume 13 Issue 3 March 2008 pp 272-276 ...

  11. Integrating systems biology models and biomedical ontologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoehndorf, Robert; Dumontier, Michel; Gennari, John H; Wimalaratne, Sarala; de Bono, Bernard; Cook, Daniel L; Gkoutos, Georgios V

    2011-08-11

    Systems biology is an approach to biology that emphasizes the structure and dynamic behavior of biological systems and the interactions that occur within them. To succeed, systems biology crucially depends on the accessibility and integration of data across domains and levels of granularity. Biomedical ontologies were developed to facilitate such an integration of data and are often used to annotate biosimulation models in systems biology. We provide a framework to integrate representations of in silico systems biology with those of in vivo biology as described by biomedical ontologies and demonstrate this framework using the Systems Biology Markup Language. We developed the SBML Harvester software that automatically converts annotated SBML models into OWL and we apply our software to those biosimulation models that are contained in the BioModels Database. We utilize the resulting knowledge base for complex biological queries that can bridge levels of granularity, verify models based on the biological phenomenon they represent and provide a means to establish a basic qualitative layer on which to express the semantics of biosimulation models. We establish an information flow between biomedical ontologies and biosimulation models and we demonstrate that the integration of annotated biosimulation models and biomedical ontologies enables the verification of models as well as expressive queries. Establishing a bi-directional information flow between systems biology and biomedical ontologies has the potential to enable large-scale analyses of biological systems that span levels of granularity from molecules to organisms.

  12. Data integration in biological research: an overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lapatas, Vasileios; Stefanidakis, Michalis; Jimenez, Rafael C; Via, Allegra; Schneider, Maria Victoria

    2015-12-01

    Data sharing, integration and annotation are essential to ensure the reproducibility of the analysis and interpretation of the experimental findings. Often these activities are perceived as a role that bioinformaticians and computer scientists have to take with no or little input from the experimental biologist. On the contrary, biological researchers, being the producers and often the end users of such data, have a big role in enabling biological data integration. The quality and usefulness of data integration depend on the existence and adoption of standards, shared formats, and mechanisms that are suitable for biological researchers to submit and annotate the data, so it can be easily searchable, conveniently linked and consequently used for further biological analysis and discovery. Here, we provide background on what is data integration from a computational science point of view, how it has been applied to biological research, which key aspects contributed to its success and future directions.

  13. Integrating rehabilitation engineering technology with biologics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collinger, Jennifer L; Dicianno, Brad E; Weber, Douglas J; Cui, Xinyan Tracy; Wang, Wei; Brienza, David M; Boninger, Michael L

    2011-06-01

    Rehabilitation engineers apply engineering principles to improve function or to solve challenges faced by persons with disabilities. It is critical to integrate the knowledge of biologics into the process of rehabilitation engineering to advance the field and maximize potential benefits to patients. Some applications in particular demonstrate the value of a symbiotic relationship between biologics and rehabilitation engineering. In this review we illustrate how researchers working with neural interfaces and integrated prosthetics, assistive technology, and biologics data collection are currently integrating these 2 fields. We also discuss the potential for further integration of biologics and rehabilitation engineering to deliver the best technologies and treatments to patients. Engineers and clinicians must work together to develop technologies that meet clinical needs and are accessible to the intended patient population. Copyright © 2011 American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Semantic Web meets Integrative Biology: a survey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Huajun; Yu, Tong; Chen, Jake Y

    2013-01-01

    Integrative Biology (IB) uses experimental or computational quantitative technologies to characterize biological systems at the molecular, cellular, tissue and population levels. IB typically involves the integration of the data, knowledge and capabilities across disciplinary boundaries in order to solve complex problems. We identify a series of bioinformatics problems posed by interdisciplinary integration: (i) data integration that interconnects structured data across related biomedical domains; (ii) ontology integration that brings jargons, terminologies and taxonomies from various disciplines into a unified network of ontologies; (iii) knowledge integration that integrates disparate knowledge elements from multiple sources; (iv) service integration that build applications out of services provided by different vendors. We argue that IB can benefit significantly from the integration solutions enabled by Semantic Web (SW) technologies. The SW enables scientists to share content beyond the boundaries of applications and websites, resulting into a web of data that is meaningful and understandable to any computers. In this review, we provide insight into how SW technologies can be used to build open, standardized and interoperable solutions for interdisciplinary integration on a global basis. We present a rich set of case studies in system biology, integrative neuroscience, bio-pharmaceutics and translational medicine, to highlight the technical features and benefits of SW applications in IB.

  15. Can lip prints provide biologic evidence?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Preeti; Sharma, Neeraj; Wadhwan, Vijay; Aggarwal, Pooja

    2016-01-01

    Lip prints are unique and can be used in personal identification. Very few studies are available which establish them as biological evidence in the court of law. Thus, the objective of this study was to attempt to isolate DNA and obtain full short tandem repeat (STR) loci of the individual from the lip prints on different surfaces. Twelve lip prints were procured on different surfaces such as tissue paper, cotton cloth, ceramic tile, and glass surface. Latent lip prints were developed using fingerprint black powder. Lipstick-coated lip prints were also collected on the same supporting items. DNA was isolated, quantified, and amplified using Identifiler™ kit to type 15 STR loci. Ample quantity of DNA was extracted from all the lip print impressions and 15 loci were successfully located in seven samples. Fourteen loci were successfully typed in 3 lip impressions while 13 loci were typed in 2 samples. This study emphasizes the relevance of lip prints at the scene of crime. Extraction of DNA followed by typing of STR loci establishes the lip prints as biological evidence too. Tissue papers, napkins, cups, and glasses may have imprints of the suspect's lips. Thus, the full genetic profile is extremely useful for the forensic team.

  16. Calculation of integrated biological response in brachytherapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dale, Roger G.; Coles, Ian P.; Deehan, Charles; O'Donoghue, Joseph A.

    1997-01-01

    Purpose: To present analytical methods for calculating or estimating the integrated biological response in brachytherapy applications, and which allow for the presence of dose gradients. Methods and Materials: The approach uses linear-quadratic (LQ) formulations to identify an equivalent biologically effective dose (BED eq ) which, if applied to a specified tissue volume, would produce the same biological effect as that achieved by a given brachytherapy application. For simple geometrical cases, BED multiplying factors have been derived which allow the equivalent BED for tumors to be estimated from a single BED value calculated at a dose reference point. For more complex brachytherapy applications a voxel-by-voxel determination of the equivalent BED will be more accurate. Equations are derived which when incorporated into brachytherapy software would facilitate such a process. Results: At both high and low dose rates, the BEDs calculated at the dose reference point are shown to be lower than the true values by an amount which depends primarily on the magnitude of the prescribed dose; the BED multiplying factors are higher for smaller prescribed doses. The multiplying factors are less dependent on the assumed radiobiological parameters. In most clinical applications involving multiple sources, particularly those in multiplanar arrays, the multiplying factors are likely to be smaller than those derived here for single sources. The overall suggestion is that the radiobiological consequences of dose gradients in well-designed brachytherapy treatments, although important, may be less significant than is sometimes supposed. The modeling exercise also demonstrates that the integrated biological effect associated with fractionated high-dose-rate (FHDR) brachytherapy will usually be different from that for an 'equivalent' continuous low-dose-rate (CLDR) regime. For practical FHDR regimes involving relatively small numbers of fractions, the integrated biological effect to

  17. Integrating Evidence Within and Across Evidence Streams Using Qualitative Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    There is high demand in environmental health for adoption of a structured process that evaluates and integrates evidence while making decisions transparent. The Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) framework holds promise to address this deman...

  18. Biological evidence of low ionizing radiation doses

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mirsch, Johanna

    2017-01-01

    Throughout life, every person is constantly exposed to different types of ionising radiation, without even noticing the exposure. The mean radiation exposure for people living in Germany amounts to approximately 4 mSv per year and encompasses the exposure from natural and man-made sources. The risks associated with exposure to low doses of radiation are still the subject of intense and highly controversial discussions, emphasizing the social relevance of studies investigating the effects of low radiation doses. In this thesis, DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) were analyzed within three projects covering different aspects. DSBs are among the most hazardous DNA lesions induced by ionizing radiation, because this type of damage can easily lead to the loss of genetic information. Consequently, the DSB presents a high risk for the genetic integrity of the cell. In the first project, extensive results uncovered the track structure of charged particles in a biological model tissue. This provided the first biological data that could be used for comparison with data that were measured or predicted using theoretical physical dosimetry methods and mathematical simulations. Charged particles contribute significantly to the natural radiation exposure and are used increasingly in cancer radiotherapy because they are more efficient in tumor cell killing than X- or γ-rays. The difference in the biological effects of high energy charged particles compared with X- or γ-rays is largely determined by the spatial distribution of their energy deposition and the track structure inducing a three-dimensional damage pattern in living cells. This damage pattern consists of cells directly hit by the particle receiving a high dose and neighboring cells not directly hit by primary particles but exposed to far-reaching secondary electrons (δ-electrons). These cells receive a much lower dose deposition in the order of a few mGy. The radial dose distribution of single particle tracks was

  19. WISB: Warwick Integrative Synthetic Biology Centre.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCarthy, John

    2016-06-15

    Synthetic biology promises to create high-impact solutions to challenges in the areas of biotechnology, human/animal health, the environment, energy, materials and food security. Equally, synthetic biologists create tools and strategies that have the potential to help us answer important fundamental questions in biology. Warwick Integrative Synthetic Biology (WISB) pursues both of these mutually complementary 'build to apply' and 'build to understand' approaches. This is reflected in our research structure, in which a core theme on predictive biosystems engineering develops underpinning understanding as well as next-generation experimental/theoretical tools, and these are then incorporated into three applied themes in which we engineer biosynthetic pathways, microbial communities and microbial effector systems in plants. WISB takes a comprehensive approach to training, education and outreach. For example, WISB is a partner in the EPSRC/BBSRC-funded U.K. Doctoral Training Centre in synthetic biology, we have developed a new undergraduate module in the subject, and we have established five WISB Research Career Development Fellowships to support young group leaders. Research in Ethical, Legal and Societal Aspects (ELSA) of synthetic biology is embedded in our centre activities. WISB has been highly proactive in building an international research and training network that includes partners in Barcelona, Boston, Copenhagen, Madrid, Marburg, São Paulo, Tartu and Valencia. © 2016 The Author(s).

  20. Biological Evidence Management for DNA Analysis in Cases of Sexual Assault

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magalhães, Teresa; Dinis-Oliveira, Ricardo Jorge; Silva, Benedita; Corte-Real, Francisco; Nuno Vieira, Duarte

    2015-01-01

    Biological evidence with forensic interest may be found in several cases of assault, being particularly relevant if sexually related. Sexual assault cases are characterized by low rates of disclosure, reporting, prosecution, and conviction. Biological evidence is sometimes the only way to prove the occurrence of sexual contact and to identify the perpetrator. The major focus of this review is to propose practical approaches and guidelines to help health, forensic, and law enforcement professionals to deal with biological evidence for DNA analysis. Attention should be devoted to avoiding contamination, degradation, and loss of biological evidence, as well as respecting specific measures to properly handle evidence (i.e., selection, collection, packing, sealing, labeling, storage, preservation, transport, and guarantee of the chain custody). Biological evidence must be carefully managed since the relevance of any finding in Forensic Genetics is determined, in the first instance, by the integrity and quantity of the samples submitted for analysis. PMID:26587562

  1. Biological Evidence Management for DNA Analysis in Cases of Sexual Assault

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teresa Magalhães

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Biological evidence with forensic interest may be found in several cases of assault, being particularly relevant if sexually related. Sexual assault cases are characterized by low rates of disclosure, reporting, prosecution, and conviction. Biological evidence is sometimes the only way to prove the occurrence of sexual contact and to identify the perpetrator. The major focus of this review is to propose practical approaches and guidelines to help health, forensic, and law enforcement professionals to deal with biological evidence for DNA analysis. Attention should be devoted to avoiding contamination, degradation, and loss of biological evidence, as well as respecting specific measures to properly handle evidence (i.e., selection, collection, packing, sealing, labeling, storage, preservation, transport, and guarantee of the chain custody. Biological evidence must be carefully managed since the relevance of any finding in Forensic Genetics is determined, in the first instance, by the integrity and quantity of the samples submitted for analysis.

  2. Cyber integrated MEMS microhand for biological applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weissman, Adam; Frazier, Athena; Pepen, Michael; Lu, Yen-Wen; Yang, Shanchieh Jay

    2009-05-01

    Anthropomorphous robotic hands at microscales have been developed to receive information and perform tasks for biological applications. To emulate a human hand's dexterity, the microhand requires a master-slave interface with a wearable controller, force sensors, and perception displays for tele-manipulation. Recognizing the constraints and complexity imposed in developing feedback interface during miniaturization, this project address the need by creating an integrated cyber environment incorporating sensors with a microhand, haptic/visual display, and object model, to emulates human hands' psychophysical perception at microscale.

  3. Data mining and data integration in biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ólason, Páll Ísólfur

    2008-01-01

    . They also necessitate new ways of data preparation as established methods for sequence sets are often useless when dealing with sets of sequence pairs. Therefore careful analysis on the sequence level as well as the integrated network level is needed to benchmark these data prior to use. The networks, which...... between molecules, the essence of systems biology. Internet technologies are very important in this respect as bioinformatics labs around the world generate staggering amounts of novel annotations, increasing the importance of on-line processing and distributed systems. One of the most important new data...... types in proteomics is protein-protein interactions. Interactions between the functional elements in the cell are a natural place to start when integrating protein annotations with the aim of gaining a systems view of the cell. Interaction data, however, are notoriously biased, erroneous and incomplete...

  4. The Virtual Institute for Integrative Biology (VIIB)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rivera, G.; Gonzalez-Nieto, F.; Perez-Acle, T.; Isea, R.; Holmes, D. S.

    2007-01-01

    The Virtual Institute for Integrative Biology (VII B) is a Latin American initiative for achieving global collaborative e-Science in the areas of bioinformatics, genome biology, systems biology, Metagenomic, medical applications and nanobiotechnolgy. The scientific agenda of VIIB includes: construction of databases for comparative genomic, the AlterORF database for alternate open reading frames discovery in genomes, bioinformatics services and protein simulations for biotechnological and medical applications. Human resource development has been promoted through co-sponsored students and shared teaching and seminars via video conferencing. E-Science challenges include: inter operability and connectivity concerns, high performance computing limitations, and the development of customized computational frameworks and flexible work flows to efficiently exploit shared resources without causing impediments to the user. Outreach programs include training workshops and classes for high school teachers and students and the new Adopt-a-Gene initiative. The VIIB has proved an effective way for small teams to transcend the critical mass problem, to overcome geographic limitations, to harness the power of large scale, collaborative science and improve the visibility of Latin American science It may provide a useful paradigm for developing further e-Science initiatives in Latin America and other emerging regions. (Author)

  5. An Integrated Biological Control System At Hanford

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, A.R.; Caudill, J.G.; Giddings, R.F.; Rodriguez, J.M.; Roos, R.C.; Wilde, J.W.

    2010-01-01

    In 1999 an integrated biological control system was instituted at the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site. Successes and changes to the program needed to be communicated to a large and diverse mix of organizations and individuals. Efforts at communication are directed toward the following: Hanford Contractors (Liquid or Tank Waste, Solid Waste, Environmental Restoration, Science and Technology, Site Infrastructure), General Hanford Employees, and Hanford Advisory Board (Native American Tribes, Environmental Groups, Local Citizens, Washington State and Oregon State regulatory agencies). Communication was done through direct interface meetings, individual communication, where appropriate, and broadly sharing program reports. The objectives of the communication efforts was to have the program well coordinated with Hanford contractors, and to have the program understood well enough that all stakeholders would have confidence in the work performed by the program to reduce or elimate spread of radioactive contamination by biotic vectors. Communication of successes and changes to an integrated biological control system instituted in 1999 at the Department of Energy's Hanford Site have required regular interfaces with not only a diverse group of Hanford contractors (i.e., those responsible for liquid or tank waste, solid wastes, environmental restoration, science and technology, and site infrastructure), and general Hanford employees, but also with a consortium of designated stake holders organized as the Hanford Advisory Board (i.e., Native American tribes, various environmental groups, local citizens, Washington state and Oregon regulatory agencies, etc.). Direct interface meetings, individual communication where appropriate, and transparency of the biological control program were the methods and outcome of this effort.

  6. AN INTEGRATED BIOLOGICAL CONTROL SYSTEM AT HANFORD

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    JOHNSON AR; CAUDILL JG; GIDDINGS RF; RODRIGUEZ JM; ROOS RC; WILDE JW

    2010-02-11

    In 1999 an integrated biological control system was instituted at the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site. Successes and changes to the program needed to be communicated to a large and diverse mix of organizations and individuals. Efforts at communication are directed toward the following: Hanford Contractors (Liquid or Tank Waste, Solid Waste, Environmental Restoration, Science and Technology, Site Infrastructure), General Hanford Employees, and Hanford Advisory Board (Native American Tribes, Environmental Groups, Local Citizens, Washington State and Oregon State regulatory agencies). Communication was done through direct interface meetings, individual communication, where appropriate, and broadly sharing program reports. The objectives of the communication efforts was to have the program well coordinated with Hanford contractors, and to have the program understood well enough that all stakeholders would have confidence in the work performed by the program to reduce or elimated spread of radioactive contamination by biotic vectors. Communication of successes and changes to an integrated biological control system instituted in 1999 at the Department of Energy's Hanford Site have required regular interfaces with not only a diverse group of Hanford contractors (i.e., those responsible for liquid or tank waste, solid wastes, environmental restoration, science and technology, and site infrastructure), and general Hanford employees, but also with a consortium of designated stake holders organized as the Hanford Advisory Board (i.e., Native American tribes, various environmental groups, local citizens, Washington state and Oregon regulatory agencies, etc.). Direct interface meetings, individual communication where appropriate, and transparency of the biological control program were the methods and outcome of this effort.

  7. Informing biological design by integration of systems and synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolke, Christina D; Silver, Pamela A

    2011-03-18

    Synthetic biology aims to make the engineering of biology faster and more predictable. In contrast, systems biology focuses on the interaction of myriad components and how these give rise to the dynamic and complex behavior of biological systems. Here, we examine the synergies between these two fields. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Evidence of dark matter from biological observations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zioutas, K.

    1990-01-01

    In accordance with the generally accepted properties of dark matter (DM) candidates, the probability of their interaction with living matter must be equal to that for inorganic matter, and the expected effects might be unique and provide the etiology related to the appearance of several biological phenomena having sometimes fatal late effects. Although collisions with DM are rare, the charged secondaries (recoiling atoms) are expected to be high linear energy transfer particles favouring the highest relative biological effectiveness values for this, as yet invisible, part of the natural background radiation. A few cases are given, where a correlation between DM interaction and phenomena in living matter might already exist, or can show up in existing data: biorhythms with periodicities identical to known cosmic frequencies are explainable with gravitationally clustered DM around the sun, the moon, the earth, etc. The observed arrhythmia, when biological probes are moved (in airplanes, satellites, etc.) support this idea strongly. It is also proposed to implement some of the biological properties and processes (such as element composition and chemical reactions) in future DM detectors in order to improve their sensitivity. The interdisciplinary feedback is bidirectional: huge DM detectors could be used in attempt to understand enigmatic biological behaviour. (orig.)

  9. Biologics in dermatology: An integrated review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virendra N Sehgal

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The advent of biologics in dermatologic treatment armentarium has added refreshing dimensions, for it is a major breakthrough. Several agents are now available for use. It is therefore imperative to succinctly comprehend their pharmacokinetics for their apt use. A concerted endeavor has been made to delve on this subject. The major groups of biologics have been covered and include: Drugs acting against TNF-α, Alefacept, Ustekinumab, Rituximab, IVIG and Omalizumab. The relevant pharmacokinetic characteristics have been detailed. Their respective label (approved and off-label (unapproved indications have been defined, highlighting their dosage protocol, availability and mode of administration. The evidence level of each indication has also been discussed to apprise the clinician of their current and prospective uses. Individual anti-TNF drugs are not identical in their actions and often one is superior to the other in a particular disease. Hence, the section on anti-TNF agents mentions the literature on each drug separately, and not as a group. The limitations for their use have also been clearly brought out.

  10. Biological condition gradient: Applying a framework for determining the biological integrity of coral reefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    The goals of the U.S. Clean Water Act (CWA) are to restore and maintain the chemical, physical and biological integrity of water resources. Although clean water is a goal, another is to safeguard biological communities by defining levels of biological integrity to protect aquatic...

  11. Broadening Participation in the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilga, Cheryl A D; Nishiguchi, Michele; Tsukimura, Brian

    2017-07-01

    The goal of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology's Broadening Participation Committee (SICB BPC) is to increase the number of underrepresented group (URG) members within the society and to expand their capabilities as future researchers and leaders within SICB. Our short-term 10-year goal was to increase the recruitment and retention of URG members in the society by 10%. Our long-term 25-year goal is to increase the membership of URG in the society through recruitment and retention until the membership demographic mirrors that of the US Census. Our plans to accomplish this included establishment of a formal standing committee, establishment of a moderate budget to support BPC activities, hosting professional development workshops, hosting diversity and mentor socials, and obtaining grant funds to supplement our budget. This paper documents broadening participation activities in the society, discusses the effectiveness of these activities, and evaluates BPC goals after 5 years of targeted funded activities. Over the past 5 years, the number of URG members rose by 5.2% to a total of 16.2%, members who report ethnicity and gender increased by 25.2% and 18%, respectively, and the number of members attending BPC activities has increased to 33% by 2016. SICB has made significant advances in broadening participation, not only through increased expenditures, but also with a commitment by its members and leadership to increase diversity. Most members realize that increasing diversity will both improve the Society's ability to develop different approaches to tackling problems within integrative biology, and help solve larger global issues that are evident throughout science and technology fields. In addition, having URG members as part of the executive committee would provide other URG members role models within the society, as well as have a voice in the leadership that represents diversity and inclusion for all scientists. © The Author 2017. Published by

  12. Reconstruction of biological networks based on life science data integration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kormeier Benjamin

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available For the implementation of the virtual cell, the fundamental question is how to model and simulate complex biological networks. Therefore, based on relevant molecular database and information systems, biological data integration is an essential step in constructing biological networks. In this paper, we will motivate the applications BioDWH - an integration toolkit for building life science data warehouses, CardioVINEdb - a information system for biological data in cardiovascular-disease and VANESA- a network editor for modeling and simulation of biological networks. Based on this integration process, the system supports the generation of biological network models. A case study of a cardiovascular-disease related gene-regulated biological network is also presented.

  13. Reconstruction of biological networks based on life science data integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kormeier, Benjamin; Hippe, Klaus; Arrigo, Patrizio; Töpel, Thoralf; Janowski, Sebastian; Hofestädt, Ralf

    2010-10-27

    For the implementation of the virtual cell, the fundamental question is how to model and simulate complex biological networks. Therefore, based on relevant molecular database and information systems, biological data integration is an essential step in constructing biological networks. In this paper, we will motivate the applications BioDWH--an integration toolkit for building life science data warehouses, CardioVINEdb--a information system for biological data in cardiovascular-disease and VANESA--a network editor for modeling and simulation of biological networks. Based on this integration process, the system supports the generation of biological network models. A case study of a cardiovascular-disease related gene-regulated biological network is also presented.

  14. Integrating quantitative thinking into an introductory biology course improves students' mathematical reasoning in biological contexts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hester, Susan; Buxner, Sanlyn; Elfring, Lisa; Nagy, Lisa

    2014-01-01

    Recent calls for improving undergraduate biology education have emphasized the importance of students learning to apply quantitative skills to biological problems. Motivated by students' apparent inability to transfer their existing quantitative skills to biological contexts, we designed and taught an introductory molecular and cell biology course in which we integrated application of prerequisite mathematical skills with biology content and reasoning throughout all aspects of the course. In this paper, we describe the principles of our course design and present illustrative examples of course materials integrating mathematics and biology. We also designed an outcome assessment made up of items testing students' understanding of biology concepts and their ability to apply mathematical skills in biological contexts and administered it as a pre/postcourse test to students in the experimental section and other sections of the same course. Precourse results confirmed students' inability to spontaneously transfer their prerequisite mathematics skills to biological problems. Pre/postcourse outcome assessment comparisons showed that, compared with students in other sections, students in the experimental section made greater gains on integrated math/biology items. They also made comparable gains on biology items, indicating that integrating quantitative skills into an introductory biology course does not have a deleterious effect on students' biology learning.

  15. Integrating Quantitative Thinking into an Introductory Biology Course Improves Students’ Mathematical Reasoning in Biological Contexts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hester, Susan; Buxner, Sanlyn; Elfring, Lisa; Nagy, Lisa

    2014-01-01

    Recent calls for improving undergraduate biology education have emphasized the importance of students learning to apply quantitative skills to biological problems. Motivated by students’ apparent inability to transfer their existing quantitative skills to biological contexts, we designed and taught an introductory molecular and cell biology course in which we integrated application of prerequisite mathematical skills with biology content and reasoning throughout all aspects of the course. In this paper, we describe the principles of our course design and present illustrative examples of course materials integrating mathematics and biology. We also designed an outcome assessment made up of items testing students’ understanding of biology concepts and their ability to apply mathematical skills in biological contexts and administered it as a pre/postcourse test to students in the experimental section and other sections of the same course. Precourse results confirmed students’ inability to spontaneously transfer their prerequisite mathematics skills to biological problems. Pre/postcourse outcome assessment comparisons showed that, compared with students in other sections, students in the experimental section made greater gains on integrated math/biology items. They also made comparable gains on biology items, indicating that integrating quantitative skills into an introductory biology course does not have a deleterious effect on students’ biology learning. PMID:24591504

  16. Integrating interactive computational modeling in biology curricula.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomáš Helikar

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available While the use of computer tools to simulate complex processes such as computer circuits is normal practice in fields like engineering, the majority of life sciences/biological sciences courses continue to rely on the traditional textbook and memorization approach. To address this issue, we explored the use of the Cell Collective platform as a novel, interactive, and evolving pedagogical tool to foster student engagement, creativity, and higher-level thinking. Cell Collective is a Web-based platform used to create and simulate dynamical models of various biological processes. Students can create models of cells, diseases, or pathways themselves or explore existing models. This technology was implemented in both undergraduate and graduate courses as a pilot study to determine the feasibility of such software at the university level. First, a new (In Silico Biology class was developed to enable students to learn biology by "building and breaking it" via computer models and their simulations. This class and technology also provide a non-intimidating way to incorporate mathematical and computational concepts into a class with students who have a limited mathematical background. Second, we used the technology to mediate the use of simulations and modeling modules as a learning tool for traditional biological concepts, such as T cell differentiation or cell cycle regulation, in existing biology courses. Results of this pilot application suggest that there is promise in the use of computational modeling and software tools such as Cell Collective to provide new teaching methods in biology and contribute to the implementation of the "Vision and Change" call to action in undergraduate biology education by providing a hands-on approach to biology.

  17. Integrating interactive computational modeling in biology curricula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helikar, Tomáš; Cutucache, Christine E; Dahlquist, Lauren M; Herek, Tyler A; Larson, Joshua J; Rogers, Jim A

    2015-03-01

    While the use of computer tools to simulate complex processes such as computer circuits is normal practice in fields like engineering, the majority of life sciences/biological sciences courses continue to rely on the traditional textbook and memorization approach. To address this issue, we explored the use of the Cell Collective platform as a novel, interactive, and evolving pedagogical tool to foster student engagement, creativity, and higher-level thinking. Cell Collective is a Web-based platform used to create and simulate dynamical models of various biological processes. Students can create models of cells, diseases, or pathways themselves or explore existing models. This technology was implemented in both undergraduate and graduate courses as a pilot study to determine the feasibility of such software at the university level. First, a new (In Silico Biology) class was developed to enable students to learn biology by "building and breaking it" via computer models and their simulations. This class and technology also provide a non-intimidating way to incorporate mathematical and computational concepts into a class with students who have a limited mathematical background. Second, we used the technology to mediate the use of simulations and modeling modules as a learning tool for traditional biological concepts, such as T cell differentiation or cell cycle regulation, in existing biology courses. Results of this pilot application suggest that there is promise in the use of computational modeling and software tools such as Cell Collective to provide new teaching methods in biology and contribute to the implementation of the "Vision and Change" call to action in undergraduate biology education by providing a hands-on approach to biology.

  18. Psychology and evolutionary biology; Causal analysis, evidence, and nomothetic laws

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Hezewijk, René

    2008-01-01

    Published as a chapter in Van Hezewijk, R. (2003). Psychology and evolutionary biology; Causal analysis, evidence, and nomothetic laws. In N. Stephenson, L. Radtke, R. Jorna & H. J. Stam (Eds.), Theoretical psychology; Critical contributions (pp. 405-415). Concord, Ontario: Captus Press.

  19. PathSys: integrating molecular interaction graphs for systems biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raval Alpan

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The goal of information integration in systems biology is to combine information from a number of databases and data sets, which are obtained from both high and low throughput experiments, under one data management scheme such that the cumulative information provides greater biological insight than is possible with individual information sources considered separately. Results Here we present PathSys, a graph-based system for creating a combined database of networks of interaction for generating integrated view of biological mechanisms. We used PathSys to integrate over 14 curated and publicly contributed data sources for the budding yeast (S. cerevisiae and Gene Ontology. A number of exploratory questions were formulated as a combination of relational and graph-based queries to the integrated database. Thus, PathSys is a general-purpose, scalable, graph-data warehouse of biological information, complete with a graph manipulation and a query language, a storage mechanism and a generic data-importing mechanism through schema-mapping. Conclusion Results from several test studies demonstrate the effectiveness of the approach in retrieving biologically interesting relations between genes and proteins, the networks connecting them, and of the utility of PathSys as a scalable graph-based warehouse for interaction-network integration and a hypothesis generator system. The PathSys's client software, named BiologicalNetworks, developed for navigation and analyses of molecular networks, is available as a Java Web Start application at http://brak.sdsc.edu/pub/BiologicalNetworks.

  20. Integrative Systems Biology Applied to Toxicology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kongsbak, Kristine Grønning

    associated with combined exposure to multiple chemicals. Testing all possible combinations of the tens of thousands environmental chemicals is impractical. This PhD project was launched to apply existing computational systems biology methods to toxicological research. In this thesis, I present in three...... of a system thereby suggesting new ways of thinking specific toxicological endpoints. Furthermore, computational methods can serve as valuable input for the hypothesis generating phase of the preparations of a research project....

  1. Integrated biological, chemical and physical processes kinetic ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... for C and N removal, only gas and liquid phase processes were considered for this integrated model. ... kLA value for the aeration system, which affects the pH in the anoxic and aerobic reactors through CO2 gas exchange. ... Water SA Vol.

  2. Integrating cell biology and proteomic approaches in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takáč, Tomáš; Šamajová, Olga; Šamaj, Jozef

    2017-10-03

    Significant improvements of protein extraction, separation, mass spectrometry and bioinformatics nurtured advancements of proteomics during the past years. The usefulness of proteomics in the investigation of biological problems can be enhanced by integration with other experimental methods from cell biology, genetics, biochemistry, pharmacology, molecular biology and other omics approaches including transcriptomics and metabolomics. This review aims to summarize current trends integrating cell biology and proteomics in plant science. Cell biology approaches are most frequently used in proteomic studies investigating subcellular and developmental proteomes, however, they were also employed in proteomic studies exploring abiotic and biotic stress responses, vesicular transport, cytoskeleton and protein posttranslational modifications. They are used either for detailed cellular or ultrastructural characterization of the object subjected to proteomic study, validation of proteomic results or to expand proteomic data. In this respect, a broad spectrum of methods is employed to support proteomic studies including ultrastructural electron microscopy studies, histochemical staining, immunochemical localization, in vivo imaging of fluorescently tagged proteins and visualization of protein-protein interactions. Thus, cell biological observations on fixed or living cell compartments, cells, tissues and organs are feasible, and in some cases fundamental for the validation and complementation of proteomic data. Validation of proteomic data by independent experimental methods requires development of new complementary approaches. Benefits of cell biology methods and techniques are not sufficiently highlighted in current proteomic studies. This encouraged us to review most popular cell biology methods used in proteomic studies and to evaluate their relevance and potential for proteomic data validation and enrichment of purely proteomic analyses. We also provide examples of

  3. Integration of genomic information with biological networks using Cytoscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer-Mehren, Anna

    2013-01-01

    Cytoscape is an open-source software for visualizing, analyzing, and modeling biological networks. This chapter explains how to use Cytoscape to analyze the functional effect of sequence variations in the context of biological networks such as protein-protein interaction networks and signaling pathways. The chapter is divided into five parts: (1) obtaining information about the functional effect of sequence variation in a Cytoscape readable format, (2) loading and displaying different types of biological networks in Cytoscape, (3) integrating the genomic information (SNPs and mutations) with the biological networks, and (4) analyzing the effect of the genomic perturbation onto the network structure using Cytoscape built-in functions. Finally, we briefly outline how the integrated data can help in building mathematical network models for analyzing the effect of the sequence variation onto the dynamics of the biological system. Each part is illustrated by step-by-step instructions on an example use case and visualized by many screenshots and figures.

  4. Climate change and biological invasions: evidence, expectations, and response options.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hulme, Philip E

    2017-08-01

    A changing climate may directly or indirectly influence biological invasions by altering the likelihood of introduction or establishment, as well as modifying the geographic range, environmental impacts, economic costs or management of alien species. A comprehensive assessment of empirical and theoretical evidence identified how each of these processes is likely to be shaped by climate change for alien plants, animals and pathogens in terrestrial, freshwater and marine environments of Great Britain. The strongest contemporary evidence for the potential role of climate change in the establishment of new alien species is for terrestrial arthropods, as a result of their ectothermic physiology, often high dispersal rate and their strong association with trade as well as commensal relationships with human environments. By contrast, there is little empirical support for higher temperatures increasing the rate of alien plant establishment due to the stronger effects of residence time and propagule pressure. The magnitude of any direct climate effect on the number of new alien species will be small relative to human-assisted introductions driven by socioeconomic factors. Casual alien species (sleepers) whose population persistence is limited by climate are expected to exhibit greater rates of establishment under climate change assuming that propagule pressure remains at least at current levels. Surveillance and management targeting sleeper pests and diseases may be the most cost-effective option to reduce future impacts under climate change. Most established alien species will increase their distribution range in Great Britain over the next century. However, such range increases are very likely be the result of natural expansion of populations that have yet to reach equilibrium with their environment, rather than a direct consequence of climate change. To assess the potential realised range of alien species will require a spatially explicit approach that not only

  5. Systems Biology as an Integrated Platform for Bioinformatics, Systems Synthetic Biology, and Systems Metabolic Engineering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bor-Sen Chen

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Systems biology aims at achieving a system-level understanding of living organisms and applying this knowledge to various fields such as synthetic biology, metabolic engineering, and medicine. System-level understanding of living organisms can be derived from insight into: (i system structure and the mechanism of biological networks such as gene regulation, protein interactions, signaling, and metabolic pathways; (ii system dynamics of biological networks, which provides an understanding of stability, robustness, and transduction ability through system identification, and through system analysis methods; (iii system control methods at different levels of biological networks, which provide an understanding of systematic mechanisms to robustly control system states, minimize malfunctions, and provide potential therapeutic targets in disease treatment; (iv systematic design methods for the modification and construction of biological networks with desired behaviors, which provide system design principles and system simulations for synthetic biology designs and systems metabolic engineering. This review describes current developments in systems biology, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering for engineering and biology researchers. We also discuss challenges and future prospects for systems biology and the concept of systems biology as an integrated platform for bioinformatics, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering.

  6. Systems Biology as an Integrated Platform for Bioinformatics, Systems Synthetic Biology, and Systems Metabolic Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bor-Sen; Wu, Chia-Chou

    2013-01-01

    Systems biology aims at achieving a system-level understanding of living organisms and applying this knowledge to various fields such as synthetic biology, metabolic engineering, and medicine. System-level understanding of living organisms can be derived from insight into: (i) system structure and the mechanism of biological networks such as gene regulation, protein interactions, signaling, and metabolic pathways; (ii) system dynamics of biological networks, which provides an understanding of stability, robustness, and transduction ability through system identification, and through system analysis methods; (iii) system control methods at different levels of biological networks, which provide an understanding of systematic mechanisms to robustly control system states, minimize malfunctions, and provide potential therapeutic targets in disease treatment; (iv) systematic design methods for the modification and construction of biological networks with desired behaviors, which provide system design principles and system simulations for synthetic biology designs and systems metabolic engineering. This review describes current developments in systems biology, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering for engineering and biology researchers. We also discuss challenges and future prospects for systems biology and the concept of systems biology as an integrated platform for bioinformatics, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering. PMID:24709875

  7. Biological data integration: wrapping data and tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacroix, Zoé

    2002-06-01

    Nowadays scientific data is inevitably digital and stored in a wide variety of formats in heterogeneous systems. Scientists need to access an integrated view of remote or local heterogeneous data sources with advanced data accessing, analyzing, and visualization tools. Building a digital library for scientific data requires accessing and manipulating data extracted from flat files or databases, documents retrieved from the Web as well as data generated by software. We present an approach to wrapping web data sources, databases, flat files, or data generated by tools through a database view mechanism. Generally, a wrapper has two tasks: it first sends a query to the source to retrieve data and, second builds the expected output with respect to the virtual structure. Our wrappers are composed of a retrieval component based on an intermediate object view mechanism called search views mapping the source capabilities to attributes, and an eXtensible Markup Language (XML) engine, respectively, to perform these two tasks. The originality of the approach consists of: 1) a generic view mechanism to access seamlessly data sources with limited capabilities and 2) the ability to wrap data sources as well as the useful specific tools they may provide. Our approach has been developed and demonstrated as part of the multidatabase system supporting queries via uniform object protocol model (OPM) interfaces.

  8. BiologicalNetworks 2.0 - an integrative view of genome biology data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ponomarenko Julia

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A significant problem in the study of mechanisms of an organism's development is the elucidation of interrelated factors which are making an impact on the different levels of the organism, such as genes, biological molecules, cells, and cell systems. Numerous sources of heterogeneous data which exist for these subsystems are still not integrated sufficiently enough to give researchers a straightforward opportunity to analyze them together in the same frame of study. Systematic application of data integration methods is also hampered by a multitude of such factors as the orthogonal nature of the integrated data and naming problems. Results Here we report on a new version of BiologicalNetworks, a research environment for the integral visualization and analysis of heterogeneous biological data. BiologicalNetworks can be queried for properties of thousands of different types of biological entities (genes/proteins, promoters, COGs, pathways, binding sites, and other and their relations (interactions, co-expression, co-citations, and other. The system includes the build-pathways infrastructure for molecular interactions/relations and module discovery in high-throughput experiments. Also implemented in BiologicalNetworks are the Integrated Genome Viewer and Comparative Genomics Browser applications, which allow for the search and analysis of gene regulatory regions and their conservation in multiple species in conjunction with molecular pathways/networks, experimental data and functional annotations. Conclusions The new release of BiologicalNetworks together with its back-end database introduces extensive functionality for a more efficient integrated multi-level analysis of microarray, sequence, regulatory, and other data. BiologicalNetworks is freely available at http://www.biologicalnetworks.org.

  9. An integrative approach to inferring biologically meaningful gene modules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Kai

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The ability to construct biologically meaningful gene networks and modules is critical for contemporary systems biology. Though recent studies have demonstrated the power of using gene modules to shed light on the functioning of complex biological systems, most modules in these networks have shown little association with meaningful biological function. We have devised a method which directly incorporates gene ontology (GO annotation in construction of gene modules in order to gain better functional association. Results We have devised a method, Semantic Similarity-Integrated approach for Modularization (SSIM that integrates various gene-gene pairwise similarity values, including information obtained from gene expression, protein-protein interactions and GO annotations, in the construction of modules using affinity propagation clustering. We demonstrated the performance of the proposed method using data from two complex biological responses: 1. the osmotic shock response in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and 2. the prion-induced pathogenic mouse model. In comparison with two previously reported algorithms, modules identified by SSIM showed significantly stronger association with biological functions. Conclusions The incorporation of semantic similarity based on GO annotation with gene expression and protein-protein interaction data can greatly enhance the functional relevance of inferred gene modules. In addition, the SSIM approach can also reveal the hierarchical structure of gene modules to gain a broader functional view of the biological system. Hence, the proposed method can facilitate comprehensive and in-depth analysis of high throughput experimental data at the gene network level.

  10. Neurocognitive capabilities modulate the integration of evidence in schizophrenia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eifler, Sarah; Rausch, Franziska; Schirmbeck, Frederike; Veckenstedt, Ruth; Englisch, Susanne; Meyer-Lindenberg, Andreas; Kirsch, Peter; Zink, Mathias

    2014-01-01

    Previous studies have demonstrated a cognitive bias in the integration of disconfirmatory evidence (BADE) in patients with schizophrenia. This bias has been associated with delusions. So far, it is unclear how the integration of evidence is associated with neurocognitive capabilities. In the current

  11. Physical integrity: the missing link in biological monitoring and TMDLs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asmus, Brenda; Magner, Joseph A; Vondracek, Bruce; Perry, Jim

    2009-12-01

    The Clean Water Act mandates that the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of our nation's waters be maintained and restored. Physical integrity has often been defined as physical habitat integrity, and as such, data collected during biological monitoring programs focus primarily on habitat quality. However, we argue that channel stability is a more appropriate measure of physical integrity and that channel stability is a foundational element of physical habitat integrity in low-gradient alluvial streams. We highlight assessment tools that could supplement stream assessments and the Total Maximum Daily Load stressor identification process: field surveys of bankfull cross-sections; longitudinal thalweg profiles; particle size distribution; and regionally calibrated, visual, stream stability assessments. Benefits of measuring channel stability include a more informed selection of reference or best attainable stream condition for an Index of Biotic Integrity, establishment of a baseline for monitoring changes in present and future condition, and indication of channel stability for investigations of chemical and biological impairments associated with sediment discontinuity and loss of habitat quality.

  12. Milkweed Seed Dispersal: A Means for Integrating Biology and Physics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bisbee, Gregory D.; Kaiser, Cheryl A.

    1997-01-01

    Describes an activity that integrates biology and physics concepts by experimenting with the seed dispersal of common milkweed or similar wind-dispersed seeds. Student teams collect seeds and measure several parameters, review principles of trajectory motion, perform experiments, and graph data. Students examine the ideas of…

  13. Integrated Network Analysis and Effective Tools in Plant Systems Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsushi eFukushima

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available One of the ultimate goals in plant systems biology is to elucidate the genotype-phenotype relationship in plant cellular systems. Integrated network analysis that combines omics data with mathematical models has received particular attention. Here we focus on the latest cutting-edge computational advances that facilitate their combination. We highlight (1 network visualization tools, (2 pathway analyses, (3 genome-scale metabolic reconstruction, and (4 the integration of high-throughput experimental data and mathematical models. Multi-omics data that contain the genome, transcriptome, proteome, and metabolome and mathematical models are expected to integrate and expand our knowledge of complex plant metabolisms.

  14. Towards Integration of Biological and Physiological Functions at Multiple Levels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taishin eNomura

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available An aim of systems physiology today can be stated as to establish logical and quantitative bridges between phenomenological attributes of physiological entities such as cells and organs and physical attributes of biological entities, i.e., biological molecules, allowing us to describe and better understand physiological functions in terms of underlying biological functions. This article illustrates possible schema that can be used for promoting systems physiology by integrating quantitative knowledge of biological and physiological functions at multiple levels of time and space with the use of information technology infrastructure. Emphasis will be made for systematic, modular, hierarchical, and standardized descriptions of mathematical models of the functions and advantages for the use of them.

  15. Data Integration and Mining for Synthetic Biology Design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mısırlı, Göksel; Hallinan, Jennifer; Pocock, Matthew; Lord, Phillip; McLaughlin, James Alastair; Sauro, Herbert; Wipat, Anil

    2016-10-21

    One aim of synthetic biologists is to create novel and predictable biological systems from simpler modular parts. This approach is currently hampered by a lack of well-defined and characterized parts and devices. However, there is a wealth of existing biological information, which can be used to identify and characterize biological parts, and their design constraints in the literature and numerous biological databases. However, this information is spread among these databases in many different formats. New computational approaches are required to make this information available in an integrated format that is more amenable to data mining. A tried and tested approach to this problem is to map disparate data sources into a single data set, with common syntax and semantics, to produce a data warehouse or knowledge base. Ontologies have been used extensively in the life sciences, providing this common syntax and semantics as a model for a given biological domain, in a fashion that is amenable to computational analysis and reasoning. Here, we present an ontology for applications in synthetic biology design, SyBiOnt, which facilitates the modeling of information about biological parts and their relationships. SyBiOnt was used to create the SyBiOntKB knowledge base, incorporating and building upon existing life sciences ontologies and standards. The reasoning capabilities of ontologies were then applied to automate the mining of biological parts from this knowledge base. We propose that this approach will be useful to speed up synthetic biology design and ultimately help facilitate the automation of the biological engineering life cycle.

  16. Integrated pathway clusters with coherent biological themes for target prioritisation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi-An Chen

    Full Text Available Prioritising candidate genes for further experimental characterisation is an essential, yet challenging task in biomedical research. One way of achieving this goal is to identify specific biological themes that are enriched within the gene set of interest to obtain insights into the biological phenomena under study. Biological pathway data have been particularly useful in identifying functional associations of genes and/or gene sets. However, biological pathway information as compiled in varied repositories often differs in scope and content, preventing a more effective and comprehensive characterisation of gene sets. Here we describe a new approach to constructing biologically coherent gene sets from pathway data in major public repositories and employing them for functional analysis of large gene sets. We first revealed significant overlaps in gene content between different pathways and then defined a clustering method based on the shared gene content and the similarity of gene overlap patterns. We established the biological relevance of the constructed pathway clusters using independent quantitative measures and we finally demonstrated the effectiveness of the constructed pathway clusters in comparative functional enrichment analysis of gene sets associated with diverse human diseases gathered from the literature. The pathway clusters and gene mappings have been integrated into the TargetMine data warehouse and are likely to provide a concise, manageable and biologically relevant means of functional analysis of gene sets and to facilitate candidate gene prioritisation.

  17. Systematic integration of experimental data and models in systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Peter; Dada, Joseph O; Jameson, Daniel; Spasic, Irena; Swainston, Neil; Carroll, Kathleen; Dunn, Warwick; Khan, Farid; Malys, Naglis; Messiha, Hanan L; Simeonidis, Evangelos; Weichart, Dieter; Winder, Catherine; Wishart, Jill; Broomhead, David S; Goble, Carole A; Gaskell, Simon J; Kell, Douglas B; Westerhoff, Hans V; Mendes, Pedro; Paton, Norman W

    2010-11-29

    The behaviour of biological systems can be deduced from their mathematical models. However, multiple sources of data in diverse forms are required in the construction of a model in order to define its components and their biochemical reactions, and corresponding parameters. Automating the assembly and use of systems biology models is dependent upon data integration processes involving the interoperation of data and analytical resources. Taverna workflows have been developed for the automated assembly of quantitative parameterised metabolic networks in the Systems Biology Markup Language (SBML). A SBML model is built in a systematic fashion by the workflows which starts with the construction of a qualitative network using data from a MIRIAM-compliant genome-scale model of yeast metabolism. This is followed by parameterisation of the SBML model with experimental data from two repositories, the SABIO-RK enzyme kinetics database and a database of quantitative experimental results. The models are then calibrated and simulated in workflows that call out to COPASIWS, the web service interface to the COPASI software application for analysing biochemical networks. These systems biology workflows were evaluated for their ability to construct a parameterised model of yeast glycolysis. Distributed information about metabolic reactions that have been described to MIRIAM standards enables the automated assembly of quantitative systems biology models of metabolic networks based on user-defined criteria. Such data integration processes can be implemented as Taverna workflows to provide a rapid overview of the components and their relationships within a biochemical system.

  18. Biological and Psychosocial Predictors of Postpartum Depression: Systematic Review and Call for Integration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanner Stapleton, Lynlee R.; Guardino, Christine M.; Hahn-Holbrook, Jennifer; Schetter, Christine Dunkel

    2017-01-01

    Postpartum depression (PPD) adversely affects the health and well being of many new mothers, their infants, and their families. A comprehensive understanding of biopsychosocial precursors to PPD is needed to solidify the current evidence base for best practices in translation. We conducted a systematic review of research published from 2000 through 2013 on biological and psychosocial factors associated with PPD and postpartum depressive symptoms. Two hundred fourteen publications based on 199 investigations of 151,651 women in the first postpartum year met inclusion criteria. The biological and psychosocial literatures are largely distinct, and few studies provide integrative analyses. The strongest PPD risk predictors among biological processes are hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal dysregulation, inflammatory processes, and genetic vulnerabilities. Among psychosocial factors, the strongest predictors are severe life events, some forms of chronic strain, relationship quality, and support from partner and mother. Fully integrated biopsychosocial investigations with large samples are needed to advance our knowledge of PPD etiology. PMID:25822344

  19. Bayesian integration of position and orientation cues in perception of biological and non-biological dynamic forms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven Matthew Thurman

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Visual form analysis is fundamental to shape perception and likely plays a central role in perception of more complex dynamic shapes, such as moving objects or biological motion. Two primary form-based cues serve to represent the overall shape of an object: the spatial position and the orientation of locations along the boundary of the object. However, it is unclear how the visual system integrates these two sources of information in dynamic form analysis, and in particular how the brain resolves ambiguities due to sensory uncertainty and/or cue conflict. In the current study, we created animations of sparsely-sampled dynamic objects (human walkers or rotating squares comprised of oriented Gabor patches in which orientation could either coincide or conflict with information provided by position cues. When the cues were incongruent, we found a characteristic trade-off between position and orientation information whereby position cues increasingly dominated perception as the relative uncertainty of orientation increased and vice versa. Furthermore, we found no evidence for differences in the visual processing of biological and non-biological objects, casting doubt on the claim that biological motion may be specialized in the human brain, at least in specific terms of form analysis. To explain these behavioral results quantitatively, we adopt a probabilistic template-matching model that uses Bayesian inference within local modules to estimate object shape separately from either spatial position or orientation signals. The outputs of the two modules are integrated with weights that reflect individual estimates of subjective cue reliability, and integrated over time to produce a decision about the perceived dynamics of the input data. Results of this model provided a close fit to the behavioral data, suggesting a mechanism in the human visual system that approximates rational Bayesian inference to integrate position and orientation signals in dynamic

  20. The evidence for biologic immunotherapy in Sarcoidosis: A systematic review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pooja Shah

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Background Sarcoidosis is a chronic inflammatory disease with a myriad of clinical manifestations. Treatment involves immunosuppression with corticosteroids or steroid-sparing agents. A proportion of patients does not respond to or are intolerant to therapy. Targeted immunotherapy with biologic agents has emerged as a novel approach with plausible mechanistic reasons to warrant study. Aims The aim of this review was to evaluate the evidence for the efficacy of biological therapy in sarcoidosis. Methods We conducted a systematic literature review and meta-analysis of all published randomised-controlled trials (RCT evaluating biological therapy in sarcoidosis, using MEDLINE and Embase databases, through to September 2017. The search terms included sarcoidosis, infliximab, adalimumab, etanercept, golimumab, certolizumab, rituximab, abatacept, tocilizumab, anakinra, ustekinumab, secukinumab. Only articles reporting RCTs were selected. Improvements in respiratory disease were assessed by changes in forced vital capacity (FVC by weighted mean difference (WMD. There were insufficient data on outcome measures in other organ systems to comparatively assess efficacy. Results The search identified 2,324 studies of which only 5 provided relevant and original data. This comprised a total of 364 patients, evaluating pulmonary, cutaneous and ocular sarcoidosis. One study in pulmonary disease and one study in cutaneous disease demonstrated improvements in the primary outcome. In pulmonary disease, meta-analysis of the treatment effect of anti-TNF therapy versus placebo on FVC revealed a WMD of 1.69 per cent (95 per cent confidence interval, 1.44–1.94. Conclusion There are insufficient data to suggest the long-term efficacy of anti-TNFα inhibitors in the treatment of sarcoidosis. This may be due to heterogeneity, small sample sizes and the lack of consistent reporting of outcome measures.

  1. West-Life, Tools for Integrative Structural Biology

    CERN Multimedia

    CERN. Geneva

    2018-01-01

    Structural biology is part of molecular biology focusing on determining structure of macromolecules inside living cells and cell membranes. As macromolecules determines most of the functions of cells the structural knowledge is very useful for further research in metabolism, physiology to application in pharmacology etc. As macromolecules are too small to be observed directly by light microscope, there are other methods used to determine the structure including nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), X-Ray crystalography, cryo electron microscopy and others. Each method has it's advantages and disadvantages in the terms of availability, sample preparation, resolution. West-Life project has ambition to facilitate integrative approach using multiple techniques mentioned above. As there are already lot of software tools to process data produced by the techniques above, the challenge is to integrate them together in a way they can be used by experts in one technique but not experts in other techniques. One product ...

  2. Semiconductor Devices Inspired By and Integrated With Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rogers, John [University of Illinois

    2012-04-25

    Biology is curved, soft and elastic; silicon wafers are not. Semiconductor technologies that can bridge this gap in form and mechanics will create new opportunities in devices that adopt biologically inspired designs or require intimate integration with the human body. This talk describes the development of ideas for electronics that offer the performance of state-of-the-art, wafer- based systems but with the mechanical properties of a rubber band. We explain the underlying materials science and mechanics of these approaches, and illustrate their use in (1) bio- integrated, ‘tissue-like’ electronics with unique capabilities for mapping cardiac and neural electrophysiology, and (2) bio-inspired, ‘eyeball’ cameras with exceptional imaging properties enabled by curvilinear, Petzval designs.

  3. Evidence on the Efficacy of Integrated Care

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Torben

    to European health regions. Method Systematic review of the literature on clinical continuity as complemented by trials and surveys within this project. Preliminary results 1. Integrated home care (IHC) is the most promising approach to better clinical continuity from the point of view of cost...... million new patients per year in EU might benefit from IHC. 3. As IHC improves activities of daily living (ADL) which implicates long term savings in social care services the working hypothesis is that IHC is a health economic dominant intervention. This enables a meso-strategy of dissemination focusing......  Purpose The fragmented delivery of health and social services for large groups of patients with chronic conditions was put on the research agenda in 2002 by WHO. The FP7-IHC-project ( http://www.integratedhomecare.eu/ ) aims to develop a turn-key-solution for better clinical continuity...

  4. Integration and Task Allocation: Evidence from Patient Care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    David, Guy; Rawley, Evan; Polsky, Daniel

    2013-01-01

    Using the universe of patient transitions from inpatient hospital care to skilled nursing facilities and home health care in 2005, we show how integration eliminates task misallocation problems between organizations. We find that vertical integration allows hospitals to shift patient recovery tasks downstream to lower-cost organizations by discharging patients earlier (and in poorer health) and increasing post-hospitalization service intensity. While integration facilitates a shift in the allocation of tasks and resources, health outcomes either improved or were unaffected by integration on average. The evidence suggests that integration solves coordination problems that arise in market exchange through improvements in the allocation of tasks across care settings.

  5. Integration and Task Allocation: Evidence from Patient Care*

    Science.gov (United States)

    David, Guy; Rawley, Evan; Polsky, Daniel

    2013-01-01

    Using the universe of patient transitions from inpatient hospital care to skilled nursing facilities and home health care in 2005, we show how integration eliminates task misallocation problems between organizations. We find that vertical integration allows hospitals to shift patient recovery tasks downstream to lower-cost organizations by discharging patients earlier (and in poorer health) and increasing post-hospitalization service intensity. While integration facilitates a shift in the allocation of tasks and resources, health outcomes either improved or were unaffected by integration on average. The evidence suggests that integration solves coordination problems that arise in market exchange through improvements in the allocation of tasks across care settings. PMID:24415893

  6. Teaching the fundamentals of biological data integration using classroom games.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Victoria Schneider

    Full Text Available This article aims to introduce the nature of data integration to life scientists. Generally, the subject of data integration is not discussed outside the field of computational science and is not covered in any detail, or even neglected, when teaching/training trainees. End users (hereby defined as wet-lab trainees, clinicians, lab researchers will mostly interact with bioinformatics resources and tools through web interfaces that mask the user from the data integration processes. However, the lack of formal training or acquaintance with even simple database concepts and terminology often results in a real obstacle to the full comprehension of the resources and tools the end users wish to access. Understanding how data integration works is fundamental to empowering trainees to see the limitations as well as the possibilities when exploring, retrieving, and analysing biological data from databases. Here we introduce a game-based learning activity for training/teaching the topic of data integration that trainers/educators can adopt and adapt for their classroom. In particular we provide an example using DAS (Distributed Annotation Systems as a method for data integration.

  7. Graduate Curriculum for Biological Information Specialists: A Key to Integration of Scale in Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carole L. Palmer

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Scientific data problems do not stand in isolation. They are part of a larger set of challenges associated with the escalation of scientific information and changes in scholarly communication in the digital environment. Biologists in particular are generating enormous sets of data at a high rate, and new discoveries in the biological sciences will increasingly depend on the integration of data across multiple scales. This work will require new kinds of information expertise in key areas. To build this professional capacity we have developed two complementary educational programs: a Biological Information Specialist (BIS masters degree and a concentration in Data Curation (DC. We believe that BISs will be central in the development of cyberinfrastructure and information services needed to facilitate interdisciplinary and multi-scale science. Here we present three sample cases from our current research projects to illustrate areas in which we expect information specialists to make important contributions to biological research practice.

  8. FIA: An Open Forensic Integration Architecture for Composing Digital Evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raghavan, Sriram; Clark, Andrew; Mohay, George

    The analysis and value of digital evidence in an investigation has been the domain of discourse in the digital forensic community for several years. While many works have considered different approaches to model digital evidence, a comprehensive understanding of the process of merging different evidence items recovered during a forensic analysis is still a distant dream. With the advent of modern technologies, pro-active measures are integral to keeping abreast of all forms of cyber crimes and attacks. This paper motivates the need to formalize the process of analyzing digital evidence from multiple sources simultaneously. In this paper, we present the forensic integration architecture (FIA) which provides a framework for abstracting the evidence source and storage format information from digital evidence and explores the concept of integrating evidence information from multiple sources. The FIA architecture identifies evidence information from multiple sources that enables an investigator to build theories to reconstruct the past. FIA is hierarchically composed of multiple layers and adopts a technology independent approach. FIA is also open and extensible making it simple to adapt to technological changes. We present a case study using a hypothetical car theft case to demonstrate the concepts and illustrate the value it brings into the field.

  9. Integrative biology approach identifies cytokine targeting strategies for psoriasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perera, Gayathri K; Ainali, Chrysanthi; Semenova, Ekaterina; Hundhausen, Christian; Barinaga, Guillermo; Kassen, Deepika; Williams, Andrew E; Mirza, Muddassar M; Balazs, Mercedesz; Wang, Xiaoting; Rodriguez, Robert Sanchez; Alendar, Andrej; Barker, Jonathan; Tsoka, Sophia; Ouyang, Wenjun; Nestle, Frank O

    2014-02-12

    Cytokines are critical checkpoints of inflammation. The treatment of human autoimmune disease has been revolutionized by targeting inflammatory cytokines as key drivers of disease pathogenesis. Despite this, there exist numerous pitfalls when translating preclinical data into the clinic. We developed an integrative biology approach combining human disease transcriptome data sets with clinically relevant in vivo models in an attempt to bridge this translational gap. We chose interleukin-22 (IL-22) as a model cytokine because of its potentially important proinflammatory role in epithelial tissues. Injection of IL-22 into normal human skin grafts produced marked inflammatory skin changes resembling human psoriasis. Injection of anti-IL-22 monoclonal antibody in a human xenotransplant model of psoriasis, developed specifically to test potential therapeutic candidates, efficiently blocked skin inflammation. Bioinformatic analysis integrating both the IL-22 and anti-IL-22 cytokine transcriptomes and mapping them onto a psoriasis disease gene coexpression network identified key cytokine-dependent hub genes. Using knockout mice and small-molecule blockade, we show that one of these hub genes, the so far unexplored serine/threonine kinase PIM1, is a critical checkpoint for human skin inflammation and potential future therapeutic target in psoriasis. Using in silico integration of human data sets and biological models, we were able to identify a new target in the treatment of psoriasis.

  10. Modeling Cancer Metastasis using Global, Quantitative and Integrative Network Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schoof, Erwin; Erler, Janine

    understanding of molecular processes which are fundamental to tumorigenesis. In Article 1, we propose a novel framework for how cancer mutations can be studied by taking into account their effect at the protein network level. In Article 2, we demonstrate how global, quantitative data on phosphorylation dynamics...... can be generated using MS, and how this can be modeled using a computational framework for deciphering kinase-substrate dynamics. This framework is described in depth in Article 3, and covers the design of KinomeXplorer, which allows the prediction of kinases responsible for modulating observed...... phosphorylation dynamics in a given biological sample. In Chapter III, we move into Integrative Network Biology, where, by combining two fundamental technologies (MS & NGS), we can obtain more in-depth insights into the links between cellular phenotype and genotype. Article 4 describes the proof...

  11. Integrated MEMS/NEMS Resonant Cantilevers for Ultrasensitive Biological Detection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xinxin Li

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper reviews the recent researches implemented in Chinese Academy of Sciences, with achievements on integrated resonant microcantilever sensors. In the resonant cantilevers, the self-sensing elements and resonance exciting elements are both top-down integrated with silicon micromachining techniques. Quite a lot of effort is focused on optimization of the resonance mode and sensing structure for improvement of sensitivity. On the other hand, to enable the micro-cantilevers specifically sensitive to bio/chemical molecules, sensing materials are developed and modified on the cantilever surface with a self-assembled monolayer (SAM based bottom-up construction and surface functionalization. To improve the selectivity of the sensors and depress environmental noise, multiple and localized surface modifications are developed. The achieved volume production capability and satisfactory detecting resolution to trace-level biological antigen of alpha-fetoprotein (AFP give the micro-cantilever sensors a great promise for rapid and high-resoluble detection.

  12. Protecting Digital Evidence Integrity by Using Smart Cards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saleem, Shahzad; Popov, Oliver

    RFC 3227 provides general guidelines for digital evidence collection and archiving, while the International Organization on Computer Evidence offers guidelines for best practice in the digital forensic examination. In the light of these guidelines we will analyze integrity protection mechanism provided by EnCase and FTK which is mainly based on Message Digest Codes (MDCs). MDCs for integrity protection are not tamper proof, hence they can be forged. With the proposed model for protecting digital evidence integrity by using smart cards (PIDESC) that establishes a secure platform for digitally signing the MDC (in general for a whole range of cryptographic services) in combination with Public Key Cryptography (PKC), one can show that this weakness might be overcome.

  13. Integration of ecological-biological thresholds in conservation decision making.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mavrommati, Georgia; Bithas, Kostas; Borsuk, Mark E; Howarth, Richard B

    2016-12-01

    In the Anthropocene, coupled human and natural systems dominate and only a few natural systems remain relatively unaffected by human influence. On the one hand, conservation criteria based on areas of minimal human impact are not relevant to much of the biosphere. On the other hand, conservation criteria based on economic factors are problematic with respect to their ability to arrive at operational indicators of well-being that can be applied in practice over multiple generations. Coupled human and natural systems are subject to economic development which, under current management structures, tends to affect natural systems and cross planetary boundaries. Hence, designing and applying conservation criteria applicable in real-world systems where human and natural systems need to interact and sustainably coexist is essential. By recognizing the criticality of satisfying basic needs as well as the great uncertainty over the needs and preferences of future generations, we sought to incorporate conservation criteria based on minimal human impact into economic evaluation. These criteria require the conservation of environmental conditions such that the opportunity for intergenerational welfare optimization is maintained. Toward this end, we propose the integration of ecological-biological thresholds into decision making and use as an example the planetary-boundaries approach. Both conservation scientists and economists must be involved in defining operational ecological-biological thresholds that can be incorporated into economic thinking and reflect the objectives of conservation, sustainability, and intergenerational welfare optimization. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.

  14. Evidence-based integrative medicine in clinical veterinary oncology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raditic, Donna M; Bartges, Joseph W

    2014-09-01

    Integrative medicine is the combined use of complementary and alternative medicine with conventional or traditional Western medicine systems. The demand for integrative veterinary medicine is growing, but evidence-based research on its efficacy is limited. In veterinary clinical oncology, such research could be translated to human medicine, because veterinary patients with spontaneous tumors are valuable translational models for human cancers. An overview of specific herbs, botanics, dietary supplements, and acupuncture evaluated in dogs, in vitro canine cells, and other relevant species both in vivo and in vitro is presented for their potential use as integrative therapies in veterinary clinical oncology. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  15. Integration and macroevolutionary patterns in the pollination biology of conifers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leslie, Andrew B; Beaulieu, Jeremy M; Crane, Peter R; Knopf, Patrick; Donoghue, Michael J

    2015-06-01

    Integration influences patterns of trait evolution, but the relationship between these patterns and the degree of trait integration is not well understood. To explore this further, we study a specialized pollination mechanism in conifers whose traits are linked through function but not development. This mechanism depends on interactions among three characters: pollen that is buoyant, ovules that face downward at pollination, and the production of a liquid droplet that buoyant grains float through to enter the ovule. We use a well-sampled phylogeny of conifers to test correlated evolution among these characters and specific sequences of character change. Using likelihood models of character evolution, we find that pollen morphology and ovule characters evolve in a concerted manner, where the flotation mechanism breaks down irreversibly following changes in orientation or drop production. The breakdown of this functional constraint, which may be facilitated by the lack of developmental integration among the constituent traits, is associated with increased trait variation and more diverse pollination strategies. Although this functional "release" increases diversity in some ways, the irreversible way in which the flotation mechanism is lost may eventually result in its complete disappearance from seed plant reproductive biology. © 2015 The Author(s). Evolution © 2015 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  16. Integrated Ecological River Health Assessments, Based on Water Chemistry, Physical Habitat Quality and Biological Integrity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji Yoon Kim

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available This study evaluated integrative river ecosystem health using stressor-based models of physical habitat health, chemical water health, and biological health of fish and identified multiple-stressor indicators influencing the ecosystem health. Integrated health responses (IHRs, based on star-plot approach, were calculated from qualitative habitat evaluation index (QHEI, nutrient pollution index (NPI, and index of biological integrity (IBI in four different longitudinal regions (Groups I–IV. For the calculations of IHRs values, multi-metric QHEI, NPI, and IBI models were developed and their criteria for the diagnosis of the health were determined. The longitudinal patterns of the river were analyzed by a self-organizing map (SOM model and the key major stressors in the river were identified by principal component analysis (PCA. Our model scores of integrated health responses (IHRs suggested that mid-stream and downstream regions were impaired, and the key stressors were closely associated with nutrient enrichment (N and P and organic matter pollutions from domestic wastewater disposal plants and urban sewage. This modeling approach of IHRs may be used as an effective tool for evaluations of integrative ecological river health..

  17. Integrating Biological Perspectives:. a Quantum Leap for Microarray Expression Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wanke, Dierk; Kilian, Joachim; Bloss, Ulrich; Mangelsen, Elke; Supper, Jochen; Harter, Klaus; Berendzen, Kenneth W.

    2009-02-01

    Biologists and bioinformatic scientists cope with the analysis of transcript abundance and the extraction of meaningful information from microarray expression data. By exploiting biological information accessible in public databases, we try to extend our current knowledge over the plant model organism Arabidopsis thaliana. Here, we give two examples of increasing the quality of information gained from large scale expression experiments by the integration of microarray-unrelated biological information: First, we utilize Arabidopsis microarray data to demonstrate that expression profiles are usually conserved between orthologous genes of different organisms. In an initial step of the analysis, orthology has to be inferred unambiguously, which then allows comparison of expression profiles between orthologs. We make use of the publicly available microarray expression data of Arabidopsis and barley, Hordeum vulgare. We found a generally positive correlation in expression trajectories between true orthologs although both organisms are only distantly related in evolutionary time scale. Second, extracting clusters of co-regulated genes implies similarities in transcriptional regulation via similar cis-regulatory elements (CREs). Vice versa approaches, where co-regulated gene clusters are found by investigating on CREs were not successful in general. Nonetheless, in some cases the presence of CREs in a defined position, orientation or CRE-combinations is positively correlated with co-regulated gene clusters. Here, we make use of genes involved in the phenylpropanoid biosynthetic pathway, to give one positive example for this approach.

  18. Evidence-based music therapy practice: an integral understanding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abrams, Brian

    2010-01-01

    The American Music Therapy Association has recently put into action a plan called its Research Strategic Priority, with one of its central purposes to advance the music therapy field through research promoting Evidence-Based Practice of music therapy. The extant literature on music therapy practice, theory, and research conveys a range of very different perspectives on what may count as the "evidence" upon which practice is based. There is therefore a need to conceptualize evidence-based music therapy practice in a multifaceted, yet coherent and balanced way. The purpose of this paper is to illustrate a framework based upon four distinct epistemological perspectives on evidence-based music therapy practice that together represent an integral understanding.

  19. Integrated anaerobic/aerobic biological treatment for intensive swine production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bortone, Giuseppe

    2009-11-01

    Manure processing could help farmers to effectively manage nitrogen (N) surplus load. Many pig farms have to treat wastewater. Piggery wastewater treatment is a complex challenge, due to the high COD and N concentrations and low C/N ratio. Anaerobic digestion (AD) could be a convenient pre-treatment, particularly from the energetic view point and farm income, but this causes further reduction of C/N ratio and makes denitrification difficult. N removal can only be obtained integrating anaerobic/aerobic treatment by taking into account the best use of electron donors. Experiences gained in Italy during development of integrated biological treatment approaches for swine manure, from bench to full scale, are reported in this paper. Solid/liquid separation as pre-treatment of raw manure is an efficient strategy to facilitate liquid fraction treatment without significantly lowering C/N ratio. In Italy, two full scale SBRs showed excellent efficiency and reliability. Current renewable energy policy and incentives makes economically attractive the application of AD to the separated solid fraction using high solid anaerobic digester (HSAD) technology. Economic evaluation showed that energy production can reduce costs up to 60%, making sustainable the overall treatment.

  20. Integrating research evidence and physical activity policy making

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aro, Arja R.; Bertram, Maja; Hämäläinen, Riitta-Maija

    2016-01-01

    Evidence shows that regular physical activity is enhanced by supporting environment. Studies are needed to integrate research evidence into health enhancing, cross-sector physical activity (HEPA) policy making. This article presents the rationale, study design, measurement procedures...... and the initial results of the first phase of six European countries in a five-year research project (2011-2016), REsearch into POlicy to enhance Physical Activity (REPOPA). REPOPA is programmatic research; it consists of linked studies; the first phase studied the use of evidence in 21 policies in implementation...... to learn more in depth from the policy making process and carried out 86 qualitative stakeholder interviews. The second, ongoing phase builds on the central findings of the first phase in each country; it consists of two sets of interventions: game simulations to study cross-sector collaboration...

  1. Functional brain networks underlying detection and integration of disconfirmatory evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lavigne, Katie M; Metzak, Paul D; Woodward, Todd S

    2015-05-15

    Processing evidence that disconfirms a prior interpretation is a fundamental aspect of belief revision, and has clear social and clinical relevance. This complex cognitive process requires (at minimum) an alerting stage and an integration stage, and in the current functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study, we used multivariate analysis methodology on two datasets in an attempt to separate these sequentially-activated cognitive stages and link them to distinct functional brain networks. Thirty-nine healthy participants completed one of two versions of an evidence integration experiment involving rating two consecutive animal images, both of which consisted of two intact images of animal faces morphed together at different ratios (e.g., 70/30 bird/dolphin followed by 10/90 bird/dolphin). The two versions of the experiment differed primarily in terms of stimulus presentation and timing, which facilitated functional interpretation of brain networks based on differences in the hemodynamic response shapes between versions. The data were analyzed using constrained principal component analysis for fMRI (fMRI-CPCA), which allows distinct, simultaneously active task-based networks to be separated, and these were interpreted using both temporal (task-based hemodynamic response shapes) and spatial (dominant brain regions) information. Three networks showed increased activity during integration of disconfirmatory relative to confirmatory evidence: (1) a network involved in alerting to the requirement to revise an interpretation, identified as the salience network (dorsal anterior cingulate cortex and bilateral insula); (2) a sensorimotor response-related network (pre- and post-central gyri, supplementary motor area, and thalamus); and (3) an integration network involving rostral prefrontal, orbitofrontal and posterior parietal cortex. These three networks were staggered in their peak activity (alerting, responding, then integrating), but at certain time points (e

  2. Pegasys: software for executing and integrating analyses of biological sequences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lett Drew

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We present Pegasys – a flexible, modular and customizable software system that facilitates the execution and data integration from heterogeneous biological sequence analysis tools. Results The Pegasys system includes numerous tools for pair-wise and multiple sequence alignment, ab initio gene prediction, RNA gene detection, masking repetitive sequences in genomic DNA as well as filters for database formatting and processing raw output from various analysis tools. We introduce a novel data structure for creating workflows of sequence analyses and a unified data model to store its results. The software allows users to dynamically create analysis workflows at run-time by manipulating a graphical user interface. All non-serial dependent analyses are executed in parallel on a compute cluster for efficiency of data generation. The uniform data model and backend relational database management system of Pegasys allow for results of heterogeneous programs included in the workflow to be integrated and exported into General Feature Format for further analyses in GFF-dependent tools, or GAME XML for import into the Apollo genome editor. The modularity of the design allows for new tools to be added to the system with little programmer overhead. The database application programming interface allows programmatic access to the data stored in the backend through SQL queries. Conclusions The Pegasys system enables biologists and bioinformaticians to create and manage sequence analysis workflows. The software is released under the Open Source GNU General Public License. All source code and documentation is available for download at http://bioinformatics.ubc.ca/pegasys/.

  3. Models for integrated pest control and their biological implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Sanyi; Cheke, Robert A

    2008-09-01

    Successful integrated pest management (IPM) control programmes depend on many factors which include host-parasitoid ratios, starting densities, timings of parasitoid releases, dosages and timings of insecticide applications and levels of host-feeding and parasitism. Mathematical models can help us to clarify and predict the effects of such factors on the stability of host-parasitoid systems, which we illustrate here by extending the classical continuous and discrete host-parasitoid models to include an IPM control programme. The results indicate that one of three control methods can maintain the host level below the economic threshold (ET) in relation to different ET levels, initial densities of host and parasitoid populations and host-parasitoid ratios. The effects of host intrinsic growth rate and parasitoid searching efficiency on host mean outbreak period can be calculated numerically from the models presented. The instantaneous pest killing rate of an insecticide application is also estimated from the models. The results imply that the modelling methods described can help in the design of appropriate control strategies and assist management decision-making. The results also indicate that a high initial density of parasitoids (such as in inundative releases) and high parasitoid inter-generational survival rates will lead to more frequent host outbreaks and, therefore, greater economic damage. The biological implications of this counter intuitive result are discussed.

  4. Integrated self-powered microchip biosensor for endogenous biological cyanide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Liu; Chen, Chaogui; Zhou, Ming; Guo, Shaojun; Wang, Erkang; Dong, Shaojun

    2010-05-15

    In this work we developed a fully integrated biofuel cell on a microchip, which consisted of glucose dehydrogenase supported (carbon nanotubes/thionine/gold nanoparticles)(8) multilayer as the anode, and the (carbon nanotubes/polylysine/laccase)(15) multilayer as the cathode. The as-obtained biofuel cell produced open circuit potential 620 mV and power density 302 microW cm(-2), showing great potential as a small power resource of portable electronics. Most importantly, for the first time we demonstrated the feasibility of developing a self-powered biosensor based on the inhibitive effect on microchip enzyme biofuel cell. With cyanide employed as the model analyte, this method showed a linear range of 3.0 x 10(-7) to 5.0 x 10(-4) M and a detection limit with 1.0 x 10(-7) M under the optimal conditions. The detection limit was lower than the acceptable cyanide concentration in drinking water (1.9 x 10(-6) M) according to the World Health Organization (WHO). This self-powered sensor was successfully used to detect the cyanide concentration in a real sample, cassava, which is the main carbohydrate resource in South America and Africa. This presented biosensor combined with a resistor and a multimeter demonstrated the general applicability as a fast and simple detection method in the determination of endogenous biological cyanide.

  5. Value-Based Medicine and Integration of Tumor Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooks, Gabriel A; Bosserman, Linda D; Mambetsariev, Isa; Salgia, Ravi

    2017-01-01

    Clinical oncology is in the midst of a genomic revolution, as molecular insights redefine our understanding of cancer biology. Greater awareness of the distinct aberrations that drive carcinogenesis is also contributing to a growing armamentarium of genomically targeted therapies. Although much work remains to better understand how to combine and sequence these therapies, improved outcomes for patients are becoming manifest. As we welcome this genomic revolution in cancer care, oncologists also must grapple with a number of practical problems. Costs of cancer care continue to grow, with targeted therapies responsible for an increasing proportion of spending. Rising costs are bringing the concept of value into sharper focus and challenging the oncology community with implementation of value-based cancer care. This article explores the ways that the genomic revolution is transforming cancer care, describes various frameworks for considering the value of genomically targeted therapies, and outlines key challenges for delivering on the promise of personalized cancer care. It highlights practical solutions for the implementation of value-based care, including investment in biomarker development and clinical trials to improve the efficacy of targeted therapy, the use of evidence-based clinical pathways, team-based care, computerized clinical decision support, and value-based payment approaches.

  6. Integrative Therapies and Pediatric Inflammatory Bowel Disease: The Current Evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Misra, Sanghamitra M

    2014-08-25

    Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) primarily describes two distinct chronic conditions with unknown etiology, ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD). UC is limited to the colon, while CD may involve any portion of the gastrointestinal tract from mouth to anus. These diseases exhibit a pattern of relapse and remission, and the disease processes are often painful and debilitating. Due to the chronic nature of IBD and the negative side effects of many of the conventional therapies, many patients and their families turn to complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) for symptom relief. This article focuses on the current available evidence behind CAM/integrative therapies for IBD.

  7. Integrating evidence-based interventions into client care plans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doran, Diane; Carryer, Jennifer; Paterson, Jane; Goering, Paula; Nagle, Lynn; Kushniruk, Andre; Bajnok, Irmajean; Clark, Carrie; Srivastava, Rani

    2009-01-01

    Within the mental health care system, there is an opportunity to improve patient safety and the overall quality of care by integrating clinical practice guidelines with the care planning process through the use of information technology. Electronic assessment tools such as the Resident Assessment Inventory - Mental Health (RAI-MH) are widely used to identify the health care needs and outcomes of clients. In this knowledge translation initiative, an electronic care planning tool was enhanced to include evidence-based clinical interventions from schizophrenia guidelines. This paper describes the development of a mental health decision support prototype, a field test by clinicians, and user experiences with the application.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-07-04

    Integration of evidence over the past decade has revised understandings about the major adaptations underlying the origin and early evolution of the genus Homo. Many features associated with Homo sapiens, including our large linear bodies, elongated hind limbs, large energy-expensive brains, reduced sexual dimorphism, increased carnivory, and unique life history traits, were once thought to have evolved near the origin of the genus in response to heightened aridity and open habitats in Africa. However, recent analyses of fossil, archaeological, and environmental data indicate that such traits did not arise as a single package. Instead, some arose substantially earlier and some later than previously thought. From ~2.5 to 1.5 million years ago, three lineages of early Homo evolved in a context of habitat instability and fragmentation on seasonal, intergenerational, and evolutionary time scales. These contexts gave a selective advantage to traits, such as dietary flexibility and larger body size, that facilitated survival in shifting environments. Copyright © 2014, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  9. Integration of Evidence Base into a Probabilistic Risk Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saile, Lyn; Lopez, Vilma; Bickham, Grandin; Kerstman, Eric; FreiredeCarvalho, Mary; Byrne, Vicky; Butler, Douglas; Myers, Jerry; Walton, Marlei

    2011-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: A probabilistic decision support model such as the Integrated Medical Model (IMM) utilizes an immense amount of input data that necessitates a systematic, integrated approach for data collection, and management. As a result of this approach, IMM is able to forecasts medical events, resource utilization and crew health during space flight. METHODS: Inflight data is the most desirable input for the Integrated Medical Model. Non-attributable inflight data is collected from the Lifetime Surveillance for Astronaut Health study as well as the engineers, flight surgeons, and astronauts themselves. When inflight data is unavailable cohort studies, other models and Bayesian analyses are used, in addition to subject matters experts input on occasion. To determine the quality of evidence of a medical condition, the data source is categorized and assigned a level of evidence from 1-5; the highest level is one. The collected data reside and are managed in a relational SQL database with a web-based interface for data entry and review. The database is also capable of interfacing with outside applications which expands capabilities within the database itself. Via the public interface, customers can access a formatted Clinical Findings Form (CLiFF) that outlines the model input and evidence base for each medical condition. Changes to the database are tracked using a documented Configuration Management process. DISSCUSSION: This strategic approach provides a comprehensive data management plan for IMM. The IMM Database s structure and architecture has proven to support additional usages. As seen by the resources utilization across medical conditions analysis. In addition, the IMM Database s web-based interface provides a user-friendly format for customers to browse and download the clinical information for medical conditions. It is this type of functionality that will provide Exploratory Medicine Capabilities the evidence base for their medical condition list

  10. Redefining Perineural Invasion: Integration of Biology With Clinical Outcome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitd, Ligia B; Beesley, Lauren J; Russo, Nickole; Bellile, Emily L; Inglehart, Ronald C; Liu, Min; Romanowicz, Genevieve; Wolf, Gregory T; Taylor, Jeremy M G; D'Silva, Nisha J

    2018-05-22

    A diagnosis of perineural invasion (PNI), defined as cancer within or surrounding at least 33% of the nerve, leads to selection of aggressive treatment in squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). Recent mechanistic studies show that cancer and nerves interact prior to physical contact. The purpose of this study was to explore cancer-nerve interactions relative to clinical outcome. Biopsy specimens from 71 patients with oral cavity SCC were stained with hematoxylin and eosin and immunohistochemical (IHC; cytokeratin, S100, GAP43, Tuj1) stains. Using current criteria, PNI detection was increased with IHC. Overall survival (OS) tended to be poor for patients with PNI (P = .098). OS was significantly lower for patients with minimum tumor-nerve distance smaller than 5 μm (P = .011). The estimated relative death rate decreased as the nerve-tumor distance increased; there was a gradual drop off in death rate from distance equal to zero that stabilized around 500 μm. In PNI-negative patients, nerve diameter was significantly related to OS (HR 2.88, 95%CI[1.11,7.49]). Among PNI-negative nerves, larger nerve-tumor distance and smaller nerve diameter were significantly related to better OS, even when adjusting for T-stage and age (HR 0.82, 95% CI[0.72,0.92]; HR 1.27, 95% CI[1.00,1.62], respectively). GAP43, a marker for neuronal outgrowth, stained less than Tuj1 in nerves at greater distances from tumor (OR 0.76, 95% CI[0.73,0.79]); more GAP43 staining was associated with PNI. Findings from a small group of patients suggest that nerve parameters other than presence of PNI can influence outcome and that current criteria of PNI need to be re-evaluated to integrate recent biological discoveries. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Future of Chemical Engineering: Integrating Biology into the Undergraduate ChE Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosto, Patricia; Savelski, Mariano; Farrell, Stephanie H.; Hecht, Gregory B.

    2007-01-01

    Integrating biology in the chemical engineering curriculum seems to be the future for chemical engineering programs nation and worldwide. Rowan University's efforts to address this need include a unique chemical engineering curriculum with an intensive biology component integrated throughout from freshman to senior years. Freshman and Sophomore…

  12. On the Edge of Mathematics and Biology Integration: Improving Quantitative Skills in Undergraduate Biology Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feser, Jason; Vasaly, Helen; Herrera, Jose

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, the authors describe how two institutions are helping their undergraduate biology students build quantitative competencies. Incorporation of quantitative skills and reasoning in biology are framed through a discussion of two cases that both concern introductory biology courses, but differ in the complexity of the mathematics and the…

  13. The challenge of integrating evidence-based design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Caren S

    2009-01-01

    This paper discusses the integration of evidence-based design (EBD) into the design process as an innovation, illuminates the significance and progress of the diffusion of this innovation, and identifies EBD advocates and the consequences of meeting the EBD challenge. A free tool for engaging in EBD is explored. Healthcare designers are leading the EBD charge, because their clients depend on it. But not all designers engage in EBD, because it may be beyond the resources of a firm or outside its culture. However, as with other meaningful design innovations, designers who do not practice EBD could fall by the wayside. EBD is a product of the diffusion of the innovation of evidence-based medicine. The academy (i.e., the collective of institutions of higher education), design organizations, design communities, and the media all contribute to the diffusion of EBD. However, the quantity, quality, and understandability of evidence continue to challenge its broad adoption. InformeDesign®, a free, Internet-based tool, presents information to designers in a concise, understandable way. Firms must invest in EBD incrementally as a value-added component of design to meet current and future challenges. It is important for designers to realize that engaging in EBD is not a rejection of creativity, but a means by which to elevate their design solutions. ©2009 VENDOME GROUP, LLC

  14. Toward an interactive article: integrating journals and biological databases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marygold Steven J

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Journal articles and databases are two major modes of communication in the biological sciences, and thus integrating these critical resources is of urgent importance to increase the pace of discovery. Projects focused on bridging the gap between journals and databases have been on the rise over the last five years and have resulted in the development of automated tools that can recognize entities within a document and link those entities to a relevant database. Unfortunately, automated tools cannot resolve ambiguities that arise from one term being used to signify entities that are quite distinct from one another. Instead, resolving these ambiguities requires some manual oversight. Finding the right balance between the speed and portability of automation and the accuracy and flexibility of manual effort is a crucial goal to making text markup a successful venture. Results We have established a journal article mark-up pipeline that links GENETICS journal articles and the model organism database (MOD WormBase. This pipeline uses a lexicon built with entities from the database as a first step. The entity markup pipeline results in links from over nine classes of objects including genes, proteins, alleles, phenotypes and anatomical terms. New entities and ambiguities are discovered and resolved by a database curator through a manual quality control (QC step, along with help from authors via a web form that is provided to them by the journal. New entities discovered through this pipeline are immediately sent to an appropriate curator at the database. Ambiguous entities that do not automatically resolve to one link are resolved by hand ensuring an accurate link. This pipeline has been extended to other databases, namely Saccharomyces Genome Database (SGD and FlyBase, and has been implemented in marking up a paper with links to multiple databases. Conclusions Our semi-automated pipeline hyperlinks articles published in GENETICS to

  15. Integrating best evidence into patient care: a process facilitated by a seamless integration with informatics tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giuse, Nunzia B; Williams, Annette M; Giuse, Dario A

    2010-07-01

    The Vanderbilt University paper discusses how the Eskind Biomedical Library at Vanderbilt University Medical Center transitioned from a simplistic approach that linked resources to the institutional electronic medical record system, StarPanel, to a value-added service that is designed to deliver highly relevant information. Clinical teams formulate complex patient-specific questions via an evidence-based medicine literature request basket linked to individual patient records. The paper transitions into discussing how the StarPanel approach acted as a springboard for two additional projects that use highly trained knowledge management librarians with informatics expertise to integrate evidence into both order sets and a patient portal, MyHealth@Vanderbilt.

  16. IntegromeDB: an integrated system and biological search engine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baitaluk, Michael; Kozhenkov, Sergey; Dubinina, Yulia; Ponomarenko, Julia

    2012-01-19

    With the growth of biological data in volume and heterogeneity, web search engines become key tools for researchers. However, general-purpose search engines are not specialized for the search of biological data. Here, we present an approach at developing a biological web search engine based on the Semantic Web technologies and demonstrate its implementation for retrieving gene- and protein-centered knowledge. The engine is available at http://www.integromedb.org. The IntegromeDB search engine allows scanning data on gene regulation, gene expression, protein-protein interactions, pathways, metagenomics, mutations, diseases, and other gene- and protein-related data that are automatically retrieved from publicly available databases and web pages using biological ontologies. To perfect the resource design and usability, we welcome and encourage community feedback.

  17. Atomic force microscope with integrated optical microscope for biological applications

    OpenAIRE

    Putman, Constant A.J.; Putman, C.A.J.; van der Werf, Kees; de Grooth, B.G.; van Hulst, N.F.; Segerink, Franciscus B.; Greve, Jan

    1992-01-01

    Since atomic force microscopy (AFM) is capable of imaging nonconducting surfaces, the technique holds great promises for high‐resolution imaging of biological specimens. A disadvantage of most AFMs is the fact that the relatively large sample surface has to be scanned multiple times to pinpoint a specific biological object of interest. Here an AFM is presented which has an incorporated inverted optical microscope. The optical image from the optical microscope is not obscured by the cantilever...

  18. Integrating biological redesign: where synthetic biology came from and where it needs to go.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Way, Jeffrey C; Collins, James J; Keasling, Jay D; Silver, Pamela A

    2014-03-27

    Synthetic biology seeks to extend approaches from engineering and computation to redesign of biology, with goals such as generating new chemicals, improving human health, and addressing environmental issues. Early on, several guiding principles of synthetic biology were articulated, including design according to specification, separation of design from fabrication, use of standardized biological parts and organisms, and abstraction. We review the utility of these principles over the past decade in light of the field's accomplishments in building complex systems based on microbial transcription and metabolism and describe the progress in mammalian cell engineering. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Economic value of biological control in integrated pest management of managed plant systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naranjo, Steven E; Ellsworth, Peter C; Frisvold, George B

    2015-01-07

    Biological control is an underlying pillar of integrated pest management, yet little focus has been placed on assigning economic value to this key ecosystem service. Setting biological control on a firm economic foundation would help to broaden its utility and adoption for sustainable crop protection. Here we discuss approaches and methods available for valuation of biological control of arthropod pests by arthropod natural enemies and summarize economic evaluations in classical, augmentative, and conservation biological control. Emphasis is placed on valuation of conservation biological control, which has received little attention. We identify some of the challenges of and opportunities for applying economics to biological control to advance integrated pest management. Interaction among diverse scientists and stakeholders will be required to measure the direct and indirect costs and benefits of biological control that will allow farmers and others to internalize the benefits that incentivize and accelerate adoption for private and public good.

  20. Influence of evidence, time, source and interferents in the observation of biological fluids with forensic lights

    OpenAIRE

    Laverde-Angarita, Lilia Judith; Clavijo-Bolívar, Yolanda

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: The laboratory receives different evidence for analysis, which maycontain fluids such as blood, semen, saliva or urine. A support tool in identifying nonvisible biological stains is observation with forensic lights. At present, there have been research advances in reference to wavelength and combination of different filters for the observation of biological fluids. Methodology: For this research, the alternate lights equipment Polilight® Flare with blue light was used, along wit...

  1. KinomeXplorer: an integrated platform for kinome biology studies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Horn, Heiko; Schoof, Erwin; Kim, Jinho

    2014-01-01

    A letter to the editor is presented related to the KinomeXplorer, an integrated platform providing workflows to efficiently analyze phosphorylation dependent interaction networks or kinase signaling networks....

  2. Biological removal of algae in an integrated pond system

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Meiring, PGJ

    1995-01-01

    Full Text Available A system of oxidation ponds in series with a biological trickling filter is described. It was known that this arrangement was incapable of reducing effectively the levels of algae present in the pond liquid even though nitrification was effected...

  3. Atomic force microscope with integrated optical microscope for biological applications

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Putman, Constant A.J.; Putman, C.A.J.; van der Werf, Kees; de Grooth, B.G.; van Hulst, N.F.; Segerink, Franciscus B.; Greve, Jan

    1992-01-01

    Since atomic force microscopy (AFM) is capable of imaging nonconducting surfaces, the technique holds great promises for high‐resolution imaging of biological specimens. A disadvantage of most AFMs is the fact that the relatively large sample surface has to be scanned multiple times to pinpoint a

  4. An Integrative Systems Biology Approach to Understanding Pulmonary Diseases

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Auffray, Charles; Adcock, Ian M.; Chung, Kian Fan; Djukanovic, Ratko; Pison, Christophe; Sterk, Peter J.

    2010-01-01

    Chronic inflammatory pulmonary diseases such as COPD and asthma are highly prevalent and associated with a major health burden worldwide. Despite a wealth of biologic and clinical information on normal and pathologic airway structure and function, the primary causes and mechanisms of disease remain

  5. DEMONSTRATION OF AN INTEGRATED, PASSIVE BIOLOGICAL TREATMENT PROCESS FOR AMD

    Science.gov (United States)

    An innovative, cost-effective, biological treatment process has been designed by MSE Technology Applications, Inc. to treat acid mine drainage (AMD). A pilot-scale demonstration is being conducted under the Mine Waste Technology Program using water flowing from an abandoned mine ...

  6. Biological soil crusts as an integral component of desert environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, Jayne; Weber, Bettina

    2013-01-01

    The biology and ecology of biological soil crusts, a soil surface community of mosses, lichens, cyanobacteria, green algae, fungi, and bacteria, have only recently been a topic of research. Most efforts began in the western U.S. (Cameron, Harper, Rushforth, and St. Clair), Australia (Rogers), and Israel (Friedmann, Evenari, and Lange) in the late 1960s and 1970s (e.g., Friedmann et al. 1967; Evenari 1985reviewed in Harper and Marble 1988). However, these groups worked independently of each other and, in fact, were often not aware of each other’s work. In addition, biological soil crust communities were seen as more a novelty than a critical component of dryland ecosystems. Since then, researchers have investigated many different aspects of these communities and have shown that although small to microscopic, biological soil crusts are critical in many ecological processes of deserts. They often cover most of desert soil surfaces and substantially mediate inputs and outputs from desert soils (Belnap et al. 2003). They can be a large source of biodiversity for deserts, as they can contain more species than the surrounding vascular plant community (Rosentreter 1986). These communities are important in reducing soil erosion and increasing soil fertility through the capture of dust and the fixation of atmospheric nitrogen and carbon into forms available to other life forms (Elbert et al. 2012). Because of their many effects on soil characteristics, such as external and internal morphological characteristics, aggregate stability, soil moisture, and permeability, they also affect seed germination and establishment and local hydrological cycles. Covering up to 70% of the surface area in many arid and semi-arid regions around the world (Belnap and Lange 2003), biological soil crusts are a key component within desert environments.

  7. It’s Personal: Biology Instructors Prioritize Personal Evidence over Empirical Evidence in Teaching Decisions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, Tessa C.; Lemons, Paula P.

    2015-01-01

    Despite many calls for undergraduate biology instructors to incorporate active learning into lecture courses, few studies have focused on what it takes for instructors to make this change. We sought to investigate the process of adopting and sustaining active-learning instruction. As a framework for our research, we used the innovation-decision model, a generalized model of how individuals adopt innovations. We interviewed 17 biology instructors who were attempting to implement case study teaching and conducted qualitative text analysis on interview data. The overarching theme that emerged from our analysis was that instructors prioritized personal experience—rather than empirical evidence—in decisions regarding case study teaching. We identified personal experiences that promote case study teaching, such as anecdotal observations of student outcomes, and those that hinder case study teaching, such as insufficient teaching skills. By analyzing the differences between experienced and new case study instructors, we discovered that new case study instructors need support to deal with unsupportive colleagues and to develop the skill set needed for an active-learning classroom. We generated hypotheses that are grounded in our data about effectively supporting instructors in adopting and sustaining active-learning strategies. We also synthesized our findings with existing literature to tailor the innovation-decision model. PMID:25713092

  8. DNA barcodes for assessment of the biological integrity of aquatic ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Water quality regulations and aquatic ecosystem monitoring increasingly rely on direct assessments of biological integrity. Because these aquatic “bioassessments” evaluate the incidence and abundance of sensitive aquatic species, they are able to measure cumulative ecosystem eff...

  9. Biological data - Integrated acoustic and trawl survey of Pacific hake off the Pacific Coast

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Integrated acoustic and trawl surveys are used to assess the distribution, biomass, and biology of Pacific hake along the Pacific coasts of the United States and...

  10. Housing interventions and control of asthma-related indoor biologic agents: a review of the evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krieger, James; Jacobs, David E; Ashley, Peter J; Baeder, Andrea; Chew, Ginger L; Dearborn, Dorr; Hynes, H Patricia; Miller, J David; Morley, Rebecca; Rabito, Felicia; Zeldin, Darryl C

    2010-01-01

    Subject matter experts systematically reviewed evidence on the effectiveness of housing interventions that affect health outcomes, primarily asthma, associated with exposure to moisture, mold, and allergens. Three of the 11 interventions reviewed had sufficient evidence for implementation: multifaceted, in-home, tailored interventions for reducing asthma morbidity; integrated pest management to reduce cockroach allergen; and combined elimination of moisture intrusion and leaks and removal of moldy items to reduce mold and respiratory symptoms. Four interventions needed more field evaluation, 1 needed formative research, and 3 either had no evidence of effectiveness or were ineffective. The 3 interventions with sufficient evidence all applied multiple, integrated strategies. This evidence review shows that selected interventions that improve housing conditions will reduce morbidity from asthma and respiratory allergies.

  11. Lean Big Data integration in systems biology and systems pharmacology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma'ayan, Avi; Rouillard, Andrew D; Clark, Neil R; Wang, Zichen; Duan, Qiaonan; Kou, Yan

    2014-09-01

    Data sets from recent large-scale projects can be integrated into one unified puzzle that can provide new insights into how drugs and genetic perturbations applied to human cells are linked to whole-organism phenotypes. Data that report how drugs affect the phenotype of human cell lines and how drugs induce changes in gene and protein expression in human cell lines can be combined with knowledge about human disease, side effects induced by drugs, and mouse phenotypes. Such data integration efforts can be achieved through the conversion of data from the various resources into single-node-type networks, gene-set libraries, or multipartite graphs. This approach can lead us to the identification of more relationships between genes, drugs, and phenotypes as well as benchmark computational and experimental methods. Overall, this lean 'Big Data' integration strategy will bring us closer toward the goal of realizing personalized medicine. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Application of integrative genomics and systems biology to conventional and in vitro reproductive traits in cattle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mazzoni, Gianluca; Pedersen, Hanne S.; de Oliveira Junior, Gerson A.

    2017-01-01

    by both conventional and ARTs such as OPU-IVP. The integration of systems biology information across different biological layers generates a complete view of the different molecular networks that control complex traits and can provide a strong contribution to the understanding of traits related to ARTs....

  13. Campus Eco Tours: An Integrative & Interactive Field Project for Undergraduate Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boes, Katie E.

    2013-01-01

    Outdoor areas within or near college campuses offer an opportunity for biology students to observe the natural world and apply concepts from class. Here, I describe an engaging and integrative project where undergraduate non-major biology students work in teams to develop and present professional "eco tours." This project takes place over multiple…

  14. Integr8: enhanced inter-operability of European molecular biology databases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kersey, P J; Morris, L; Hermjakob, H; Apweiler, R

    2003-01-01

    The increasing production of molecular biology data in the post-genomic era, and the proliferation of databases that store it, require the development of an integrative layer in database services to facilitate the synthesis of related information. The solution of this problem is made more difficult by the absence of universal identifiers for biological entities, and the breadth and variety of available data. Integr8 was modelled using UML (Universal Modelling Language). Integr8 is being implemented as an n-tier system using a modern object-oriented programming language (Java). An object-relational mapping tool, OJB, is being used to specify the interface between the upper layers and an underlying relational database. The European Bioinformatics Institute is launching the Integr8 project. Integr8 will be an automatically populated database in which we will maintain stable identifiers for biological entities, describe their relationships with each other (in accordance with the central dogma of biology), and store equivalences between identified entities in the source databases. Only core data will be stored in Integr8, with web links to the source databases providing further information. Integr8 will provide the integrative layer of the next generation of bioinformatics services from the EBI. Web-based interfaces will be developed to offer gene-centric views of the integrated data, presenting (where known) the links between genome, proteome and phenotype.

  15. What is the evidence for the use of biologic or biosynthetic meshes in abdominal wall reconstruction?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Köckerling, F; Alam, N N; Antoniou, S A; Daniels, I R; Famiglietti, F; Fortelny, R H; Heiss, M M; Kallinowski, F; Kyle-Leinhase, I; Mayer, F; Miserez, M; Montgomery, A; Morales-Conde, S; Muysoms, F; Narang, S K; Petter-Puchner, A; Reinpold, W; Scheuerlein, H; Smietanski, M; Stechemesser, B; Strey, C; Woeste, G; Smart, N J

    2018-04-01

    Although many surgeons have adopted the use of biologic and biosynthetic meshes in complex abdominal wall hernia repair, others have questioned the use of these products. Criticism is addressed in several review articles on the poor standard of studies reporting on the use of biologic meshes for different abdominal wall repairs. The aim of this consensus review is to conduct an evidence-based analysis of the efficacy of biologic and biosynthetic meshes in predefined clinical situations. A European working group, "BioMesh Study Group", composed of invited surgeons with a special interest in surgical meshes, formulated key questions, and forwarded them for processing in subgroups. In January 2016, a workshop was held in Berlin where the findings were presented, discussed, and voted on for consensus. Findings were set out in writing by the subgroups followed by consensus being reached. For the review, 114 studies and background analyses were used. The cumulative data regarding biologic mesh under contaminated conditions do not support the claim that it is better than synthetic mesh. Biologic mesh use should be avoided when bridging is needed. In inguinal hernia repair biologic and biosynthetic meshes do not have a clear advantage over the synthetic meshes. For prevention of incisional or parastomal hernias, there is no evidence to support the use of biologic/biosynthetic meshes. In complex abdominal wall hernia repairs (incarcerated hernia, parastomal hernia, infected mesh, open abdomen, enterocutaneous fistula, and component separation technique), biologic and biosynthetic meshes do not provide a superior alternative to synthetic meshes. The routine use of biologic and biosynthetic meshes cannot be recommended.

  16. The Dominance Behavioral System and Psychopathology: Evidence from Self-Report, Observational, and Biological Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Sheri L.; Leedom, Liane J.; Muhtadie, Luma

    2012-01-01

    The dominance behavioral system (DBS) can be conceptualized as a biologically based system that guides dominance motivation, dominant and subordinate behavior, and responsivity to perceptions of power and subordination. A growing body of research suggests that problems with the DBS are evident across a broad range of psychopathologies. We begin by…

  17. Decision-Making Under Risk: Integrating Perspectives From Biology, Economics, and Psychology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, Sandeep

    2014-08-01

    Decision-making under risk has been variably characterized and examined in many different disciplines. However, interdisciplinary integration has not been forthcoming. Classic theories of decision-making have not been amply revised in light of greater empirical data on actual patterns of decision-making behavior. Furthermore, the meta-theoretical framework of evolution by natural selection has been largely ignored in theories of decision-making under risk in the human behavioral sciences. In this review, I critically examine four of the most influential theories of decision-making from economics, psychology, and biology: expected utility theory, prospect theory, risk-sensitivity theory, and heuristic approaches. I focus especially on risk-sensitivity theory, which offers a framework for understanding decision-making under risk that explicitly involves evolutionary considerations. I also review robust empirical evidence for individual differences and environmental/situational factors that predict actual risky decision-making that any general theory must account for. Finally, I offer steps toward integrating various theoretical perspectives and empirical findings on risky decision-making. © 2014 by the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, Inc.

  18. Integrative Physiology 2.0’: integration of systems biology into physiology and its application to cardiovascular homeostasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuster, Diederik W D; Merkus, Daphne; van der Velden, Jolanda; Verhoeven, Adrie J M; Duncker, Dirk J

    2011-01-01

    Since the completion of the Human Genome Project and the advent of the large scaled unbiased ‘-omics’ techniques, the field of systems biology has emerged. Systems biology aims to move away from the traditional reductionist molecular approach, which focused on understanding the role of single genes or proteins, towards a more holistic approach by studying networks and interactions between individual components of networks. From a conceptual standpoint, systems biology elicits a ‘back to the future’ experience for any integrative physiologist. However, many of the new techniques and modalities employed by systems biologists yield tremendous potential for integrative physiologists to expand their tool arsenal to (quantitatively) study complex biological processes, such as cardiac remodelling and heart failure, in a truly holistic fashion. We therefore advocate that systems biology should not become/stay a separate discipline with ‘-omics’ as its playing field, but should be integrated into physiology to create ‘Integrative Physiology 2.0’. PMID:21224228

  19. Evidence from dynamic integrated proctography to redefine anismus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, J P; Womack, N R; Hallan, R I; Thorpe, A C; Williams, N S

    1992-11-01

    The role of anismus in the aetiology of defective rectal evacuation was investigated by dynamic integrated proctography in 20 controls and 71 constipated patients. Normal parameters were defined and compared between 21 constipated patients with poor evacuation during proctography ( 90 per cent of contrast evacuated; group 2). Nine patients in group 1 failed to evacuate. Radiological abnormalities of the rectum were recorded in all groups but obstructed evacuation was not observed. Anismus (defined as a recruitment of puborectalis electromyogram (EMG) activity of > 50 per cent) was significantly more common in group 1 than group 2 patients (14 of 21 versus 12 of 50, P 50 cmH2O compared with two in group 2 (P anismus and inability to raise intrarectal pressure, which may combine to cause defective evacuation. EMG recruitment alone is insufficient to diagnose anismus. Definition should be based on three criteria: demonstration of puborectalis EMG recruitment of > 50 per cent; evidence of an adequate level of intrarectal pressure (> 50 cmH2O) on straining; and presence of defective evacuation.

  20. The integral biologically effective dose to predict brain stem toxicity of hypofractionated stereotactic radiotherapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clark, Brenda G.; Souhami, Luis; Pla, Conrado; Al-Amro, Abdullah S.; Bahary, Jean-Paul; Villemure, Jean-Guy; Caron, Jean-Louis; Olivier, Andre; Podgorsak, Ervin B.

    1998-01-01

    Purpose: The aim of this work was to develop a parameter for use during fractionated stereotactic radiotherapy treatment planning to aid in the determination of the appropriate treatment volume and fractionation regimen that will minimize risk of late damage to normal tissue. Materials and Methods: We have used the linear quadratic model to assess the biologically effective dose at the periphery of stereotactic radiotherapy treatment volumes that impinge on the brain stem. This paper reports a retrospective study of 77 patients with malignant and benign intracranial lesions, treated between 1987 and 1995, with the dynamic rotation technique in 6 fractions over a period of 2 weeks, to a total dose of 42 Gy prescribed at the 90% isodose surface. From differential dose-volume histograms, we evaluated biologically effective dose-volume histograms and obtained an integral biologically-effective dose (IBED) in each case. Results: Of the 77 patients in the study, 36 had target volumes positioned so that the brain stem received more than 1% of the prescribed dose, and 4 of these, all treated for meningioma, developed serious late damage involving the brain stem. Other than type of lesion, the only significant variable was the volume of brain stem exposed. An analysis of the IBEDs received by these 36 patients shows evidence of a threshold value for late damage to the brain stem consistent with similar thresholds that have been determined for external beam radiotherapy. Conclusions: We have introduced a new parameter, the IBED, that may be used to represent the fractional effective dose to structures such as the brain stem that are partially irradiated with stereotactic dose distributions. The IBED is easily calculated prior to treatment and may be used to determine appropriate treatment volumes and fractionation regimens minimizing possible toxicity to normal tissue

  1. Functionalization and microfluidic integration of silicon nanowire biologically gated field effect transistors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pfreundt, Andrea

    This thesis deals with the development of a novel biosensor for the detection of biomolecules based on a silicon nanowire biologically gated field-effect transistor and its integration into a point-of-care device. The sensor and electrical on-chip integration was developed in a different project...

  2. Functionalization and microfluidic integration of silicon nanowire biologically gated field effect transistors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pfreundt, Andrea; Svendsen, Winnie Edith; Dimaki, Maria

    2016-01-01

    This thesis deals with the development of a novel biosensor for the detection of biomolecules based on a silicon nanowire biologically gated field-effect transistor and its integration into a point-of-care device. The sensor and electrical on-chip integration was developed in a different project...

  3. INTEGRATED MANAGEMENT OF CHROMOLAENA ODORATA EMPHASIZING THE CLASSICAL BIOLOGICAL CONTROL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SOEKISMAN TJITROSEMITO

    1998-01-01

    Full Text Available Chromolaena odorata, Siam weed, a very important weed of Java Island (Indonesia is native to Central and South America. In the laboratory it showed rapid growth (1.15 g/g/week in the first 8 weeks of its growth. The biomass was mainly as leaves (LAR : 317.50 cm'/g total weight. It slowed down in the following month as the biomass was utilized for stem and branch formation. This behavior supported the growth of C. odorata into a very dense stand. It flowered, fruited during the dry season, and senesced following maturation of seeds from inflorescence branches. These branches dried out, but soon the stem resumed aggressive growth following the wet season. Leaf biomass was affected by the size of the stem in its early phase of regrowth, but later on it was more affected by the number of branches. The introduction of Pareuchaetes pseudoinsulata to Indonesia, was successful only in North Sumatera. In Java it has not been reported to establish succesfully. The introduction of another biological control agent, Procecidochares conneca to Indonesia was shown to be sp ecific and upon release in West Java it established immediately. It spread exponentia lly in the first 6 months of its release. Field monitoring continues to eval uate the impact of the agents. Other biocontrol agents (Actmole anteas and Conotrachelus wilt be introduced to Indonesia in 1997 through ACIAR Project on the Biological Control of Chromolaena odorata in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.

  4. Ion transport through biological membranes an integrated theoretical approach

    CERN Document Server

    Mackey, Michael C

    1975-01-01

    This book illustrates some of the ways physics and mathematics have been, and are being, used to elucidate the underlying mechan­ isms of passive ion movement through biological membranes in general, and the membranes of excltable cells in particular. I have made no effort to be comprehensive in my introduction of biological material and the reader interested in a brief account of single cell electro­ physlology from a physically-oriented biologists viewpoint will find the chapters by Woodbury (1965) an excellent introduction. Part I is introductory in nature, exploring the basic electrical properties of inexcitable and excitable cell plasma membranes. Cable theory is utilized to illustrate the function of the non-decrementing action potential as a signaling mechanism for the long range trans­ mission of information in the nervous system, and to gain some in­ sight into the gross behaviour of neurons. The detailed analysis of Hodgkin and Huxley on the squid giant axon membrane ionic conductance properties...

  5. BioInt: an integrative biological object-oriented application framework and interpreter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desai, Sanket; Burra, Prasad

    2015-01-01

    BioInt, a biological programming application framework and interpreter, is an attempt to equip the researchers with seamless integration, efficient extraction and effortless analysis of the data from various biological databases and algorithms. Based on the type of biological data, algorithms and related functionalities, a biology-specific framework was developed which has nine modules. The modules are a compilation of numerous reusable BioADTs. This software ecosystem containing more than 450 biological objects underneath the interpreter makes it flexible, integrative and comprehensive. Similar to Python, BioInt eliminates the compilation and linking steps cutting the time significantly. The researcher can write the scripts using available BioADTs (following C++ syntax) and execute them interactively or use as a command line application. It has features that enable automation, extension of the framework with new/external BioADTs/libraries and deployment of complex work flows.

  6. Integrated modelling of physical, chemical and biological weather

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kurganskiy, Alexander

    . This is an online-coupled meteorology-chemistry model where chemical constituents and different types of aerosols are an integrated part of the dynamical model, i.e., these constituents are transported in the same way as, e.g., water vapor and cloud water, and, at the same time, the aerosols can interactively...... impact radiation and cloud micro-physics. The birch pollen modelling study has been performed for domains covering Europe and western Russia. Verification of the simulated birch pollen concentrations against in-situ observations showed good agreement obtaining the best score for two Danish sites...

  7. Integration of biological networks and gene expression data using Cytoscape

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cline, M.S.; Smoot, M.; Cerami, E.

    2007-01-01

    of an interaction network obtained for genes of interest. Five major steps are described: (i) obtaining a gene or protein network, (ii) displaying the network using layout algorithms, (iii) integrating with gene expression and other functional attributes, (iv) identifying putative complexes and functional modules......Cytoscape is a free software package for visualizing, modeling and analyzing molecular and genetic interaction networks. This protocol explains how to use Cytoscape to analyze the results of mRNA expression profiling, and other functional genomics and proteomics experiments, in the context...... and (v) identifying enriched Gene Ontology annotations in the network. These steps provide a broad sample of the types of analyses performed by Cytoscape....

  8. The Tobacco mosaic virus Movement Protein Associates with but Does Not Integrate into Biological Membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peiró, Ana; Martínez-Gil, Luis; Tamborero, Silvia; Pallás, Vicente

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Plant positive-strand RNA viruses require association with plant cell endomembranes for viral translation and replication, as well as for intra- and intercellular movement of the viral progeny. The membrane association and RNA binding of the Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) movement protein (MP) are vital for orchestrating the macromolecular network required for virus movement. A previously proposed topological model suggests that TMV MP is an integral membrane protein with two putative α-helical transmembrane (TM) segments. Here we tested this model using an experimental system that measured the efficiency with which natural polypeptide segments were inserted into the ER membrane under conditions approximating the in vivo situation, as well as in planta. Our results demonstrated that the two hydrophobic regions (HRs) of TMV MP do not span biological membranes. We further found that mutations to alter the hydrophobicity of the first HR modified membrane association and precluded virus movement. We propose a topological model in which the TMV MP HRs intimately associate with the cellular membranes, allowing maximum exposure of the hydrophilic domains of the MP to the cytoplasmic cellular components. IMPORTANCE To facilitate plant viral infection and spread, viruses encode one or more movement proteins (MPs) that interact with ER membranes. The present work investigated the membrane association of the 30K MP of Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV), and the results challenge the previous topological model, which predicted that the TMV MP behaves as an integral membrane protein. The current data provide greatly needed clarification of the topological model and provide substantial evidence that TMV MP is membrane associated only at the cytoplasmic face of the membrane and that neither of its domains is integrated into the membrane or translocated into the lumen. Understanding the topology of MPs in the ER is vital for understanding the role of the ER in plant virus transport

  9. Aligning ontologies and integrating textual evidence for pathway analysis of microarray data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gopalan, Banu; Posse, Christian; Sanfilippo, Antonio P.; Stenzel-Poore, Mary; Stevens, S.L.; Castano, Jose; Beagley, Nathaniel; Riensche, Roderick M.; Baddeley, Bob; Simon, R.P.; Pustejovsky, James

    2006-10-08

    Expression arrays are introducing a paradigmatic change in biology by shifting experimental approaches from single gene studies to genome-level analysis, monitoring the ex-pression levels of several thousands of genes in parallel. The massive amounts of data obtained from the microarray data needs to be integrated and interpreted to infer biological meaning within the context of information-rich pathways. In this paper, we present a methodology that integrates textual information with annotations from cross-referenced ontolo-gies to map genes to pathways in a semi-automated way. We illustrate this approach and compare it favorably to other tools by analyzing the gene expression changes underlying the biological phenomena related to stroke. Stroke is the third leading cause of death and a major disabler in the United States. Through years of study, researchers have amassed a significant knowledge base about stroke, and this knowledge, coupled with new technologies, is providing a wealth of new scientific opportunities. The potential for neu-roprotective stroke therapy is enormous. However, the roles of neurogenesis, angiogenesis, and other proliferative re-sponses in the recovery process following ischemia and the molecular mechanisms that lead to these processes still need to be uncovered. Improved annotation of genomic and pro-teomic data, including annotation of pathways in which genes and proteins are involved, is required to facilitate their interpretation and clinical application. While our approach is not aimed at replacing existing curated pathway databases, it reveals multiple hidden relationships that are not evident with the way these databases analyze functional groupings of genes from the Gene Ontology.

  10. Probabilistic Inference of Biological Networks via Data Integration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark F. Rogers

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available There is significant interest in inferring the structure of subcellular networks of interaction. Here we consider supervised interactive network inference in which a reference set of known network links and nonlinks is used to train a classifier for predicting new links. Many types of data are relevant to inferring functional links between genes, motivating the use of data integration. We use pairwise kernels to predict novel links, along with multiple kernel learning to integrate distinct sources of data into a decision function. We evaluate various pairwise kernels to establish which are most informative and compare individual kernel accuracies with accuracies for weighted combinations. By associating a probability measure with classifier predictions, we enable cautious classification, which can increase accuracy by restricting predictions to high-confidence instances, and data cleaning that can mitigate the influence of mislabeled training instances. Although one pairwise kernel (the tensor product pairwise kernel appears to work best, different kernels may contribute complimentary information about interactions: experiments in S. cerevisiae (yeast reveal that a weighted combination of pairwise kernels applied to different types of data yields the highest predictive accuracy. Combined with cautious classification and data cleaning, we can achieve predictive accuracies of up to 99.6%.

  11. Seeds integrate biological information about conspecific and allospecific neighbours.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamawo, Akira; Mukai, Hiromi

    2017-06-28

    Numerous organisms integrate information from multiple sources and express adaptive behaviours, but how they do so at different developmental stages remains to be identified. Seeds, which are the embryonic stage of plants, need to make decisions about the timing of emergence in response to environmental cues related to survival. We investigated the timing of emergence of Plantago asiatica (Plantaginaceae) seed while manipulating the presence of Trifolium repens seed and the relatedness of neighbouring P. asiatica seed. The relatedness of neighbouring P. asiatica seed and the presence of seeds of T. repens did not on their own influence the timing of P. asiatica emergence. However, when encountering a T. repens seed, a P. asiatica seed emerged faster in the presence of a sibling seed than in the presence of a non-sibling seed. Water extracts of seeds gave the same result. We show that P. asiatica seeds integrate information about the relatedness of neighbouring P. asiatica seeds and the presence of seeds of a different species via water-soluble chemicals and adjust their emergence behaviour in response. These findings suggest the presence of kin-dependent interspecific interactions. © 2017 The Author(s).

  12. Carbon sequestration, biological diversity, and sustainable development: Integrated forest management

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cairns, M.A. (Environmental Research Lab., Corvallis, OR (United States)); Meganck, R.A. (United Nations Environment Programme for the Wider Caribbean, Kingston (Jamaica))

    Tropical deforestation provides a significant contribution to anthropogenic increases in atmospheric CO[sub 2] concentration that may lead to global warming. Forestation and other forest management options to sequester CO[sub 2] in the tropical latitudes may fail unless they address local economic, social, environmental, and political needs of people in the developing world. Forest management is discussed in terms of three objectives: Carbon sequestration, sustainable development, and biodiversity conservation. An integrated forest management strategy of land-use planning is proposed to achieve these objectives and is centered around: Preservation of primary forest, intensified use of nontimber resources, agroforestry, and selective use of plantation forestry. 89 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab.

  13. Treatment of atrazine by integrating photocatalytic and biological processes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chan, C.Y.; Tao, S.; Dawson, R.; Wong, P.K.

    2004-01-01

    This research examines the degradation of atrazine by photocatalytic oxidation (PCO) under different experimental conditions. Deisopropylatrazine, deethylatrazine and deethyldeisopropylatrazine were formed as major intermediates based on gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The reaction mixture was found to be toxic towards two bioassays, i.e. the Microtox[reg] and amphipods survival tests even when atrazine was completely degraded by PCO within 2 h under optimized conditions. The results indicate that adding H 2 O 2 could significantly enhance the degradation of atrazine by PCO. Ammeline, ammelide and cyanuric acid (CA) became the major intermediates/products as detected by high performance liquid chromatography from 6th to the 40th h of PCO treatment. After 72 h PCO treatment, only CA was detectable in the reaction mixture. Further degradation of CA was carried out by a newly isolated CA-degrading bacterium, Sphingomonas capsulata. The photochemical pretreatment integrated with microbial degradation lead to the complete degradation and detoxification of atrazine

  14. Integrating fluid dynamic and biologic effects on staphylococci bacteria biofilms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherman, Erica; Endres, Jennifer; Bayles, Kenneth; Wei, Timothy

    2017-11-01

    Staphylococcus aureus bacteria are able to form biofilms and distinctive tower structures that facilitate their ability to tolerate treatment and to spread within the human body. The formation of towers, which break off, get carried downstream and serve to initiate biofilms in other parts of the body are of particular interest here. In previous work on biofilm growth and evolution in steady, laminar microchannel flows, it has been established that tower formation occurs around a very limited range of applied shear stresses centered on 0.6 dynes/cm2. Quantifying cell density characteristics as a function of time during biofilm formation reveals indicators of tower development hours before towers actually form and become visible. The next step in this research is to explore biological factors that might explain why this specific shear is so important. Additional studies with mutants, e.g. ica-A, that have been tied to tower formation have been conducted. The shear dependence of these mutants and their correlation to the behavior of wild type S. aureus is examined.

  15. Making United States Integrated Ocean Observing System (U.S. IOOS) inclusive of marine biological resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moustahfid, H.; Potemra, J.; Goldstein, P.; Mendelssohn, R.; Desrochers, A.

    2011-01-01

    An important Data Management and Communication (DMAC) goal is to enable a multi-disciplinary view of the ocean environment by facilitating discovery and integration of data from various sources, projects and scientific domains. United States Integrated Ocean Observing System (U.S. IOOS) DMAC functional requirements are based upon guidelines for standardized data access services, data formats, metadata, controlled vocabularies, and other conventions. So far, the data integration effort has focused on geophysical U.S. IOOS core variables such as temperature, salinity, ocean currents, etc. The IOOS Biological Observations Project is addressing the DMAC requirements that pertain to biological observations standards and interoperability applicable to U.S. IOOS and to various observing systems. Biological observations are highly heterogeneous and the variety of formats, logical structures, and sampling methods create significant challenges. Here we describe an informatics framework for biological observing data (e.g. species presence/absence and abundance data) that will expand information content and reconcile standards for the representation and integration of these biological observations for users to maximize the value of these observing data. We further propose that the approach described can be applied to other datasets generated in scientific observing surveys and will provide a vehicle for wider dissemination of biological observing data. We propose to employ data definition conventions that are well understood in U.S. IOOS and to combine these with ratified terminologies, policies and guidelines. ?? 2011 MTS.

  16. Lignin valorization through integrated biological funneling and chemical catalysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linger, Jeffrey G.; Vardon, Derek R.; Guarnieri, Michael T.; Karp, Eric M.; Hunsinger, Glendon B.; Franden, Mary Ann; Johnson, Christopher W.; Chupka, Gina; Strathmann, Timothy J.; Pienkos, Philip T.; Beckham, Gregg T.

    2014-01-01

    Lignin is an energy-dense, heterogeneous polymer comprised of phenylpropanoid monomers used by plants for structure, water transport, and defense, and it is the second most abundant biopolymer on Earth after cellulose. In production of fuels and chemicals from biomass, lignin is typically underused as a feedstock and burned for process heat because its inherent heterogeneity and recalcitrance make it difficult to selectively valorize. In nature, however, some organisms have evolved metabolic pathways that enable the utilization of lignin-derived aromatic molecules as carbon sources. Aromatic catabolism typically occurs via upper pathways that act as a “biological funnel” to convert heterogeneous substrates to central intermediates, such as protocatechuate or catechol. These intermediates undergo ring cleavage and are further converted via the β-ketoadipate pathway to central carbon metabolism. Here, we use a natural aromatic-catabolizing organism, Pseudomonas putida KT2440, to demonstrate that these aromatic metabolic pathways can be used to convert both aromatic model compounds and heterogeneous, lignin-enriched streams derived from pilot-scale biomass pretreatment into medium chain-length polyhydroxyalkanoates (mcl-PHAs). mcl-PHAs were then isolated from the cells and demonstrated to be similar in physicochemical properties to conventional carbohydrate-derived mcl-PHAs, which have applications as bioplastics. In a further demonstration of their utility, mcl-PHAs were catalytically converted to both chemical precursors and fuel-range hydrocarbons. Overall, this work demonstrates that the use of aromatic catabolic pathways enables an approach to valorize lignin by overcoming its inherent heterogeneity to produce fuels, chemicals, and materials. PMID:25092344

  17. An integrated platform for assessing biologics (Conference Presentation)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schein, Perry; O'Dell, Dakota; Erickson, David

    2016-04-01

    Protein therapeutics are a rapidly growing portion of the pharmaceuticals market and have many significant advantages over traditional small molecule drugs. As this market expands, however, critical regulatory and quality control issues remain, most notably the problem of protein aggregation. Individual target proteins often aggregate into larger masses which trigger an immune response in the body, which can reduce the efficacy of the drug for its intended purpose, or cause serious anaphylactic side-effects. Although detecting and minimizing aggregate formation is critical to ensure an effective product, aggregation dynamics are often highly complicated and there is little hope of reliable prediction and prevention from first principles. This problem is compounded for aggregates in the subvisible range of 100 nm to 10 micrometers where traditional techniques for detecting aggregates have significant limitations. Here, we present an integrated optofluidic platform for detecting nanoscale protein aggregates and characterizing interactions between these aggregates and a reference surface. By delivering light to a solution of proteins with an optical waveguide, scattered light from individual protein aggregates can be detected and analyzed to determine the force profile between each particle and the waveguide surface. Unlike existing methods which only determine size or charge, our label-free screening technique can directly measure the surface interaction forces between single aggregates and the glass substrate. This direct measurement capability may allow for better empirical predictions of the stability of protein aggregates during drug manufacturing and storage.

  18. Integrative assessment of Evolutionary theory acceptance and knowledge levels of Biology undergraduate students from a Brazilian university

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tavares, Gustavo Medina; Bobrowski, Vera Lucia

    2018-03-01

    The integrative role that Evolutionary theory plays within Biology is recognised by most scientific authors, as well as in governmental education policies, including Brazilian policies. However, teaching and learning evolution seems problematic in many countries, and Brazil is among those. Many factors may affect teachers' and students' perceptions towards evolution, and studies can help to reveal those factors. We used a conceptual questionnaire, the Measure of Acceptance of the Theory of Evolution (MATE) instrument, and a Knowledge test to assess (1) the level of acceptance and understanding of 23 undergraduate Biology students nearing the end of their course, (2) other factors that could affect these levels, including course structure, and (3) the most difficult topics regarding evolutionary biology. The results of this study showed that the students, on average, had a 'Very High Acceptance' (89.91) and a 'Very Low Knowledge' (59.42%) of Evolutionary theory, and also indicated a moderate positive correlation between the two (r = 0.66, p = .001). The most difficult topics were related to the definition of evolution and dating techniques. We believe that the present study provides evidence for policymakers to reformulate current school and university curricula in order to improve the teachers' acceptance and understanding of evolution and other biological concepts, consequently, helping students reduce their misconceptions related to evolutionary biology.

  19. Evidence for replacement of an infected synthetic by a biological mesh in abdominal wall hernia repair

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Agneta eMontgomery

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The incidence of deep infection using a synthetic mesh in inguinal hernia repair is low and reported to be well below 1%. This is in contrast to incisional hernia surgery where the reported incidence is 3% respective 13% comparing laparoscopic to open mesh repair reported in a Cochrane review. Main risk factors were long operation time, surgical site contamination and early wound complications. An infected mesh can be preserved using conservative treatment were negative pressure wound therapy (VAC® could play an important role. If strategy fails, the mesh needs to be removed. This review aims to look at evidence for situations were a biological mesh would work as a replacement of a removed infected synthetic mesh. Material and MethodsA literature search of the Medline database was performed using the PubMed search engine. Twenty publications were found relevant for this review.ResultsFor studies reviewed three options are presented: removal of the infected synthetic mesh alone, replacement with either a new synthetic or a new biological mesh. Operations were all performed at specialist centers. Removal of the mesh alone was an option limited to inguinal hernias. In ventral/incisional hernias the use of a biological mesh for replacement resulted in a very high recurrence rate, if bridging was required. Either a synthetic or a biological mesh seems to work as a replacement when fascial closure can be achieved. Evidence is though very low. ConclusionWhen required, either a synthetic or a biological meshes seems to work as a replacement for an infected synthetic mesh if the defect can be closed. It is however not recommended to use a biological mesh for bridging. Mesh replacement surgery is demanding and is recommended to be performed in a specialist center.

  20. Electrophysiological evidence for speech-specific audiovisual integration

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baart, M.; Stekelenburg, J.J.; Vroomen, J.

    2014-01-01

    Lip-read speech is integrated with heard speech at various neural levels. Here, we investigated the extent to which lip-read induced modulations of the auditory N1 and P2 (measured with EEG) are indicative of speech-specific audiovisual integration, and we explored to what extent the ERPs were

  1. Selfishness, warfare and economics; or integration, cooperation and biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emiliano Jesus Salvucci

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The acceptance of Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection is not complete and it has been pointed out its limitation to explain the complex processes that constitute the transformation of species. The darwinian paradigm had its origin in the free market theories and concepts of Malthus and Spencer. Nature was explained on the basis of market theories moving away from an accurate explanation of natural phenomena. It is common that new discoveries bring about contradictions that are intended to be overcome by adjusting results to the dominant reductionist paradigm using all sorts of gradations and combinations that are admitted for each case. Modern findings represent a challenge to the interpretation of the observations with the Darwinian view of competition and struggle for life as theoretical basis. New holistic interpretations are emerging related with the Net of Life, in which the interconnection of ecosystems constitutes a dynamic and self-regulating biosphere: Viruses are recognized as a macroorganism with a huge collection of genes, most unknown, that constitute the major planet's gene pool with a fundamental role in evolution. The hologenome theory considers an organism and all of its associated symbiotic microbes as a result of symbiopoiesis. Microbes, helmints, that normally are understood as parasites, are cohabitants and they have cohabited with their host and drives the evolution and existence of the partners. Each organism is a result of integration of complex systems. The eukaryotic organism is the result of combination of bacterial, virus and eukaryotic DNA and the interaction of its own genome with the genome of its microbiota resulting in an intertwined metabolism (a superorganism along evolution. These new interpretations are remarkable points to be considered in order to construct a solid theory adjusted to the facts and with less speculations and tortuous semantic traps.

  2. The biology of lysine acetylation integrates transcriptional programming and metabolism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mujtaba Shiraz

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The biochemical landscape of lysine acetylation has expanded from a small number of proteins in the nucleus to a multitude of proteins in the cytoplasm. Since the first report confirming acetylation of the tumor suppressor protein p53 by a lysine acetyltransferase (KAT, there has been a surge in the identification of new, non-histone targets of KATs. Added to the known substrates of KATs are metabolic enzymes, cytoskeletal proteins, molecular chaperones, ribosomal proteins and nuclear import factors. Emerging studies demonstrate that no fewer than 2000 proteins in any particular cell type may undergo lysine acetylation. As described in this review, our analyses of cellular acetylated proteins using DAVID 6.7 bioinformatics resources have facilitated organization of acetylated proteins into functional clusters integral to cell signaling, the stress response, proteolysis, apoptosis, metabolism, and neuronal development. In addition, these clusters also depict association of acetylated proteins with human diseases. These findings not only support lysine acetylation as a widespread cellular phenomenon, but also impel questions to clarify the underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms governing target selectivity by KATs. Present challenges are to understand the molecular basis for the overlapping roles of KAT-containing co-activators, to differentiate between global versus dynamic acetylation marks, and to elucidate the physiological roles of acetylated proteins in biochemical pathways. In addition to discussing the cellular 'acetylome', a focus of this work is to present the widespread and dynamic nature of lysine acetylation and highlight the nexus that exists between epigenetic-directed transcriptional regulation and metabolism.

  3. The observation of biology implemented by integrated religion values in integrated Islamic school (Decriptive Study in X Integrated Senior Hight School Tasikmalaya)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nurjanah, E.; Adisendjaja, Y. H.; Kusumastuti, M. N.

    2018-05-01

    The learning Integrated Religious value is one of the efforts to increase the motivation of learning and building the student character. This study aims to describe the application of Biology learning integrated religion values in Integrated Islamic School. Research methods used in this research is descriptive. Participants in this study involved the headmaster, headmaster of curriculum, biology teachers, boarding school teachers, the lead of boarding schools, and students. The instruments used are interview, observation and the student questionnaire about learning biology. The results showed that learning in X school consists of two curriculums, there was the curriculum of national education and curriculum of boarding school. The curriculum of national education referred to 2013 curriculum and boarding school curriculum referred to the curriculum of Salafi boarding school (Kitab Kuning). However, in its learning process not delivered integrated. The main obstacle to implementing the learning integrated religious values are 1) the background of general teacher education did not know of any connection between biology subject and subject that are studied in boarding school; 2) schools did not form the teaching team; 3) unavailability of materials integrated religious values.

  4. Multisensory integration in complete unawareness: evidence from audiovisual congruency priming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faivre, Nathan; Mudrik, Liad; Schwartz, Naama; Koch, Christof

    2014-11-01

    Multisensory integration is thought to require conscious perception. Although previous studies have shown that an invisible stimulus could be integrated with an audible one, none have demonstrated integration of two subliminal stimuli of different modalities. Here, pairs of identical or different audiovisual target letters (the sound /b/ with the written letter "b" or "m," respectively) were preceded by pairs of masked identical or different audiovisual prime digits (the sound /6/ with the written digit "6" or "8," respectively). In three experiments, awareness of the audiovisual digit primes was manipulated, such that participants were either unaware of the visual digit, the auditory digit, or both. Priming of the semantic relations between the auditory and visual digits was found in all experiments. Moreover, a further experiment showed that unconscious multisensory integration was not obtained when participants did not undergo prior conscious training of the task. This suggests that following conscious learning, unconscious processing suffices for multisensory integration. © The Author(s) 2014.

  5. Dovetailing biology and chemistry: integrating the Gene Ontology with the ChEBI chemical ontology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background The Gene Ontology (GO) facilitates the description of the action of gene products in a biological context. Many GO terms refer to chemical entities that participate in biological processes. To facilitate accurate and consistent systems-wide biological representation, it is necessary to integrate the chemical view of these entities with the biological view of GO functions and processes. We describe a collaborative effort between the GO and the Chemical Entities of Biological Interest (ChEBI) ontology developers to ensure that the representation of chemicals in the GO is both internally consistent and in alignment with the chemical expertise captured in ChEBI. Results We have examined and integrated the ChEBI structural hierarchy into the GO resource through computationally-assisted manual curation of both GO and ChEBI. Our work has resulted in the creation of computable definitions of GO terms that contain fully defined semantic relationships to corresponding chemical terms in ChEBI. Conclusions The set of logical definitions using both the GO and ChEBI has already been used to automate aspects of GO development and has the potential to allow the integration of data across the domains of biology and chemistry. These logical definitions are available as an extended version of the ontology from http://purl.obolibrary.org/obo/go/extensions/go-plus.owl. PMID:23895341

  6. An Introductory "How-to" Guide for Incorporating Microbiome Research into Integrative and Comparative Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohl, Kevin D

    2017-10-01

    Research on host-associated microbial communities has grown rapidly. Despite the great body of work, inclusion of microbiota-related questions into integrative and comparative biology is still lagging behind other disciplines. The purpose of this paper is to offer an introduction into the basic tools and techniques of host-microbe research. Specifically, what considerations should be made before embarking on such projects (types of samples, types of controls)? How is microbiome data analyzed and integrated with data measured from the hosts? How can researchers experimentally manipulate the microbiome? With this information, integrative and comparative biologists should be able to include host-microbe studies into their research and push the boundaries of both fields. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. Integrating biological and social values when prioritizing places for biodiversity conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitehead, Amy L; Kujala, Heini; Ives, Christopher D; Gordon, Ascelin; Lentini, Pia E; Wintle, Brendan A; Nicholson, Emily; Raymond, Christopher M

    2014-08-01

    The consideration of information on social values in conjunction with biological data is critical for achieving both socially acceptable and scientifically defensible conservation planning outcomes. However, the influence of social values on spatial conservation priorities has received limited attention and is poorly understood. We present an approach that incorporates quantitative data on social values for conservation and social preferences for development into spatial conservation planning. We undertook a public participation GIS survey to spatially represent social values and development preferences and used species distribution models for 7 threatened fauna species to represent biological values. These spatially explicit data were simultaneously included in the conservation planning software Zonation to examine how conservation priorities changed with the inclusion of social data. Integrating spatially explicit information about social values and development preferences with biological data produced prioritizations that differed spatially from the solution based on only biological data. However, the integrated solutions protected a similar proportion of the species' distributions, indicating that Zonation effectively combined the biological and social data to produce socially feasible conservation solutions of approximately equivalent biological value. We were able to identify areas of the landscape where synergies and conflicts between different value sets are likely to occur. Identification of these synergies and conflicts will allow decision makers to target communication strategies to specific areas and ensure effective community engagement and positive conservation outcomes. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  8. Reproductive Biology Including Evidence for Superfetation in the European Badger Meles meles (Carnivora: Mustelidae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leigh A L Corner

    Full Text Available The reproductive biology of the European badger (Meles meles is of wide interest because it is one of the few mammal species that show delayed implantation and one of only five which are suggested to show superfetation as a reproductive strategy. This study aimed to describe the reproductive biology of female Irish badgers with a view to increasing our understanding of the process of delayed implantation and superfetation. We carried out a detailed histological examination of the reproductive tract of 264 female badgers taken from sites across 20 of the 26 counties in the Republic of Ireland. The key results show evidence of multiple blastocysts at different stages of development present simultaneously in the same female, supporting the view that superfetation is relatively common in this population of badgers. In addition we present strong evidence that the breeding rate in Irish badgers is limited by failure to conceive, rather than failure at any other stages of the breeding cycle. We show few effects of age on breeding success, suggesting no breeding suppression by adult females in this population. The study sheds new light on this unusual breeding strategy of delayed implantation and superfetation, and highlights a number of significant differences between the reproductive biology of female Irish badgers and those of Great Britain and Swedish populations.

  9. Promoting Student Learning through the Integration of Lab and Lecture: The Seamless Biology Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burrowes, Patricia; Nazario, Gladys

    2008-01-01

    The authors engaged in an education experiment to determine if the integration of lab and lecture activities in zoology and botany proved beneficial to student learning and motivation toward biology. Their results revealed that this strategy positively influenced students' academic achievement, conceptual understanding, and ability to apply…

  10. The Dominance Behavioral System and Psychopathology: Evidence from Self-Report, Observational, and Biological Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Sheri L.; Leedom, Liane J.; Muhtadie, Luma

    2012-01-01

    The dominance behavioral system (DBS) can be conceptualized as a biologically-based system which guides dominance motivation, dominant and subordinate behavior, and responsivity to perceptions of power and subordination. A growing body of research suggests that problems with the DBS are evident across a broad range of psychopathologies. We begin by describing psychological, social, and biological correlates of the dominance behavioral system (DBS). Extensive research suggests that externalizing disorders, mania-proneness, and narcissistic traits are related to heightened dominance motivation and behaviors. Mania and narcissistic traits also appear related to inflated self-perceptions of power. Anxiety and depression are related to subordination and submissiveness, as well as a desire to avoid subordination. Models of the DBS have received support from research with humans and animals; from self-report, observational, and biological methods; and using naturalistic and experimental paradigms. Limitations of available research include the relative lack of longitudinal studies using multiple measures of the DBS and the absence of relevant studies using diagnosed samples to study narcissistic personality disorder and bipolar disorder. We provide suggestions for future research on the DBS and psychopathology, including investigations of whether the DBS can be used to differentiate specific disorder outcomes; the need for more sophisticated biological research; and the value of longitudinal dynamical research. Implications of using the DBS as a tool in clinical assessment and treatment are discussed. PMID:22506751

  11. The validation of forensic DNA extraction systems to utilize soil contaminated biological evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasu, Mohaimin; Shires, Karen

    2015-07-01

    The production of full DNA profiles from biological evidence found in soil has a high failure rate due largely to the inhibitory substance humic acid (HA). Abundant in various natural soils, HA co-extracts with DNA during extraction and inhibits DNA profiling by binding to the molecular components of the genotyping assay. To successfully utilize traces of soil contaminated evidence, such as that found at many murder and rape crime scenes in South Africa, a reliable HA removal extraction system would often be selected based on previous validation studies. However, for many standard forensic DNA extraction systems, peer-reviewed publications detailing the efficacy on soil evidence is either lacking or is incomplete. Consequently, these sample types are often not collected or fail to yield suitable DNA material due to the use of unsuitable methodology. The aim of this study was to validate the common forensic DNA collection and extraction systems used in South Africa, namely DNA IQ, FTA elute and Nucleosave for processing blood and saliva contaminated with HA. A forensic appropriate volume of biological evidence was spiked with HA (0, 0.5, 1.5 and 2.5 mg/ml) and processed through each extraction protocol for the evaluation of HA removal using QPCR and STR-genotyping. The DNA IQ magnetic bead system effectively removed HA from highly contaminated blood and saliva, and generated consistently acceptable STR profiles from both artificially spiked samples and crude soil samples. This system is highly recommended for use on soil-contaminated evidence over the cellulose card-based systems currently being preferentially used for DNA sample collection. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Historical Business Cycles and Market Integration: Evidence from Comovement

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Uebele, Martin

    2009-01-01

    This thesis addresses historical business cycles and market integration in Europe and America in the 19th and 20th centuries. For the analysis of historical business cycles, the widely used methodology of historical national accounting is complemented with a dynamic factor model that allows for

  13. Camels, Cormorants, and Kangaroo Rats: Integration and Synthesis in Organismal Biology After World War II.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagen, Joel B

    2015-01-01

    During the decades following World War II diverse groups of American biologists established a variety of distinctive approaches to organismal biology. Rhetorically, organismal biology could be used defensively to distinguish established research traditions from perceived threats from newly emerging fields such as molecular biology. But, organismal biologists were also interested in integrating biological disciplines and using a focus on organisms to synthesize levels of organization from molecules and cells to populations and communities. Part of this broad movement was the development of an area of research variously referred to as physiological ecology, environmental physiology, or ecophysiology. This area of research was distinctive in its self-conscious blend of field and laboratory practices and its explicit integration with other areas of biology such as ecology, animal behavior, and evolution in order to study adaptation. Comparing the intersecting careers of Knut Schmidt-Nielsen and George Bartholomew highlights two strikingly different approaches to physiological ecology. These alternative approaches to studying the interactions of organisms and environments also differed in important ways from the organismal biology championed by leading figures in the modern synthesis.

  14. A data integration approach for cell cycle analysis oriented to model simulation in systems biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mosca Ettore

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The cell cycle is one of the biological processes most frequently investigated in systems biology studies and it involves the knowledge of a large number of genes and networks of protein interactions. A deep knowledge of the molecular aspect of this biological process can contribute to making cancer research more accurate and innovative. In this context the mathematical modelling of the cell cycle has a relevant role to quantify the behaviour of each component of the systems. The mathematical modelling of a biological process such as the cell cycle allows a systemic description that helps to highlight some features such as emergent properties which could be hidden when the analysis is performed only from a reductionism point of view. Moreover, in modelling complex systems, a complete annotation of all the components is equally important to understand the interaction mechanism inside the network: for this reason data integration of the model components has high relevance in systems biology studies. Description In this work, we present a resource, the Cell Cycle Database, intended to support systems biology analysis on the Cell Cycle process, based on two organisms, yeast and mammalian. The database integrates information about genes and proteins involved in the cell cycle process, stores complete models of the interaction networks and allows the mathematical simulation over time of the quantitative behaviour of each component. To accomplish this task, we developed, a web interface for browsing information related to cell cycle genes, proteins and mathematical models. In this framework, we have implemented a pipeline which allows users to deal with the mathematical part of the models, in order to solve, using different variables, the ordinary differential equation systems that describe the biological process. Conclusion This integrated system is freely available in order to support systems biology research on the cell cycle and

  15. Integrating evidence-based principles into the undergraduate ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Background. The research methodology module was reviewed as part of the overall revision of the undergraduate physiotherapy curriculum of Stellenbosch University. This created an ideal platform from which to assess how to align the principles of evidence-based practice (EBP) with research methodology. Fostering the ...

  16. Interaction and Representational Integration: Evidence from Speech Errors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldrick, Matthew; Baker, H. Ross; Murphy, Amanda; Baese-Berk, Melissa

    2011-01-01

    We examine the mechanisms that support interaction between lexical, phonological and phonetic processes during language production. Studies of the phonetics of speech errors have provided evidence that partially activated lexical and phonological representations influence phonetic processing. We examine how these interactive effects are modulated…

  17. The role of bacillus-based biological control agents in integrated pest management systems: plant diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobsen, B J; Zidack, N K; Larson, B J

    2004-11-01

    ABSTRACT Bacillus-based biological control agents (BCAs) have great potential in integrated pest management (IPM) systems; however, relatively little work has been published on integration with other IPM management tools. Unfortunately, most research has focused on BCAs as alternatives to synthetic chemical fungicides or bactericides and not as part of an integrated management system. IPM has had many definitions and this review will use the national coalition for IPM definition: "A sustainable approach to managing pests by combining biological, cultural, physical and chemical tools in a way that minimizes economic, health and environmental risks." This review will examine the integrated use of Bacillus-based BCAs with disease management tools, including resistant cultivars, fungicides or bactericides, or other BCAs. This integration is important because the consistency and degree of disease control by Bacillus-based BCAs is rarely equal to the control afforded by the best fungicides or bactericides. In theory, integration of several tools brings stability to disease management programs. Integration of BCAs with other disease management tools often provides broader crop adaptation and both more efficacious and consistent levels of disease control. This review will also discuss the use of Bacillus-based BCAs in fungicide resistance management. Work with Bacillus thuringiensis and insect pest management is the exception to the relative paucity of reports but will not be the focus of this review.

  18. Integrated analysis of multiple data sources reveals modular structure of biological networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lu Hongchao; Shi Baochen; Wu Gaowei; Zhang Yong; Zhu Xiaopeng; Zhang Zhihua; Liu Changning; Zhao, Yi; Wu Tao; Wang Jie; Chen Runsheng

    2006-01-01

    It has been a challenging task to integrate high-throughput data into investigations of the systematic and dynamic organization of biological networks. Here, we presented a simple hierarchical clustering algorithm that goes a long way to achieve this aim. Our method effectively reveals the modular structure of the yeast protein-protein interaction network and distinguishes protein complexes from functional modules by integrating high-throughput protein-protein interaction data with the added subcellular localization and expression profile data. Furthermore, we take advantage of the detected modules to provide a reliably functional context for the uncharacterized components within modules. On the other hand, the integration of various protein-protein association information makes our method robust to false-positives, especially for derived protein complexes. More importantly, this simple method can be extended naturally to other types of data fusion and provides a framework for the study of more comprehensive properties of the biological network and other forms of complex networks

  19. Electrophysiological evidence for speech-specific audiovisual integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baart, Martijn; Stekelenburg, Jeroen J; Vroomen, Jean

    2014-01-01

    Lip-read speech is integrated with heard speech at various neural levels. Here, we investigated the extent to which lip-read induced modulations of the auditory N1 and P2 (measured with EEG) are indicative of speech-specific audiovisual integration, and we explored to what extent the ERPs were modulated by phonetic audiovisual congruency. In order to disentangle speech-specific (phonetic) integration from non-speech integration, we used Sine-Wave Speech (SWS) that was perceived as speech by half of the participants (they were in speech-mode), while the other half was in non-speech mode. Results showed that the N1 obtained with audiovisual stimuli peaked earlier than the N1 evoked by auditory-only stimuli. This lip-read induced speeding up of the N1 occurred for listeners in speech and non-speech mode. In contrast, if listeners were in speech-mode, lip-read speech also modulated the auditory P2, but not if listeners were in non-speech mode, thus revealing speech-specific audiovisual binding. Comparing ERPs for phonetically congruent audiovisual stimuli with ERPs for incongruent stimuli revealed an effect of phonetic stimulus congruency that started at ~200 ms after (in)congruence became apparent. Critically, akin to the P2 suppression, congruency effects were only observed if listeners were in speech mode, and not if they were in non-speech mode. Using identical stimuli, we thus confirm that audiovisual binding involves (partially) different neural mechanisms for sound processing in speech and non-speech mode. © 2013 Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  20. Price convergence and market integration: evidence from Malaysia

    OpenAIRE

    Lee, Chin; Habibullah, Muzafar Shah

    2008-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to assess the markets integration within Malaysia by examine the price convergence across Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak. Disaggregate monthly price data for various types of goods or services in Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak were utilized. Levin and Lin (1993) panel unit root test was employed to test whether the price of various types of goods among 3 provinces/states in Malaysia are stationary. The result of panel unit roots test showed that in...

  1. Interaction and representational integration: Evidence from speech errors

    OpenAIRE

    Goldrick, Matthew; Baker, H. Ross; Murphy, Amanda; Baese-Berk, Melissa

    2011-01-01

    We examine the mechanisms that support interaction between lexical, phonological and phonetic processes during language production. Studies of the phonetics of speech errors have provided evidence that partially activated lexical and phonological representations influence phonetic processing. We examine how these interactive effects are modulated by lexical frequency. Previous research has demonstrated that during lexical access, the processing of high frequency words is facilitated; in contr...

  2. F229. THE BIOLOGICAL UNDERPINNINGS OF TREATMENT RESPONSE IN DELUSIONAL DISORDER: A SYSTEMATIC REVIEW OF QUALITATIVE EVIDENCE-TO-DATE

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Rodríguez, Alexandre; Estrada, Francesc; Montalvo, Itziar; Monreal, José Antonio; Palao, Diego; Labad, Javier

    2018-01-01

    identified, of which 12 met our inclusion criteria. Four hypotheses were addressed: (1) Dopaminergic dysfunction (n=4): ziprasidone-induced supersensitivity psychosis by chronic blockade of D2 Dopamine Receptor (DRD2) (n=1); pretreatment levels of plasma homovallinic acid (pHVA) (n=1); dopamine transporter (DAT) dysfunction (n=1) and effectiveness of aripiprazole (DRD2 agonist) (n=1). (2) Serotonergic dysfunction (n=6): drug occupancy in 5-HT1A and 5-HT2A receptors (n=3) and efficacy of 5-HT2 antagonists (n=3). Brain dysfunction (n=7): hypoperfusion in cerebral blood flow in temporal and parietal lobes, left side (n=5), right side (n=1) and lack of basal ganglia and subcortical gray matter lesions (n=1). Genetic evidence (n=1): implications of DRD2 Ser311Cys, DRD3 Ser9Gly and TH VNTR polymorphisms. Discussion The strongests biological contributors for treatment response in delusional disorder seem to be those implicating monoaminergic systems, particularly dopamine and serotonergic neurotransmitters. Although the low level of evidence, the serotonergic dysfunction may be associated with response rates, especially in delusional disorder somatic type. The link between genetic variants of dopamine receptors and neuroimaging findings in delusional disorder may open new avenues for the search of the biological underpinnings of treatment response. The evidence for an integrated model involving dopamine and serotonin systems bears further investigations.

  3. Multilevel functional genomics data integration as a tool for understanding physiology: a network biology perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidsen, Peter K; Turan, Nil; Egginton, Stuart; Falciani, Francesco

    2016-02-01

    The overall aim of physiological research is to understand how living systems function in an integrative manner. Consequently, the discipline of physiology has since its infancy attempted to link multiple levels of biological organization. Increasingly this has involved mathematical and computational approaches, typically to model a small number of components spanning several levels of biological organization. With the advent of "omics" technologies, which can characterize the molecular state of a cell or tissue (intended as the level of expression and/or activity of its molecular components), the number of molecular components we can quantify has increased exponentially. Paradoxically, the unprecedented amount of experimental data has made it more difficult to derive conceptual models underlying essential mechanisms regulating mammalian physiology. We present an overview of state-of-the-art methods currently used to identifying biological networks underlying genomewide responses. These are based on a data-driven approach that relies on advanced computational methods designed to "learn" biology from observational data. In this review, we illustrate an application of these computational methodologies using a case study integrating an in vivo model representing the transcriptional state of hypoxic skeletal muscle with a clinical study representing muscle wasting in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients. The broader application of these approaches to modeling multiple levels of biological data in the context of modern physiology is discussed. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  4. Integrative multicellular biological modeling: a case study of 3D epidermal development using GPU algorithms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christley Scott

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Simulation of sophisticated biological models requires considerable computational power. These models typically integrate together numerous biological phenomena such as spatially-explicit heterogeneous cells, cell-cell interactions, cell-environment interactions and intracellular gene networks. The recent advent of programming for graphical processing units (GPU opens up the possibility of developing more integrative, detailed and predictive biological models while at the same time decreasing the computational cost to simulate those models. Results We construct a 3D model of epidermal development and provide a set of GPU algorithms that executes significantly faster than sequential central processing unit (CPU code. We provide a parallel implementation of the subcellular element method for individual cells residing in a lattice-free spatial environment. Each cell in our epidermal model includes an internal gene network, which integrates cellular interaction of Notch signaling together with environmental interaction of basement membrane adhesion, to specify cellular state and behaviors such as growth and division. We take a pedagogical approach to describing how modeling methods are efficiently implemented on the GPU including memory layout of data structures and functional decomposition. We discuss various programmatic issues and provide a set of design guidelines for GPU programming that are instructive to avoid common pitfalls as well as to extract performance from the GPU architecture. Conclusions We demonstrate that GPU algorithms represent a significant technological advance for the simulation of complex biological models. We further demonstrate with our epidermal model that the integration of multiple complex modeling methods for heterogeneous multicellular biological processes is both feasible and computationally tractable using this new technology. We hope that the provided algorithms and source code will be a

  5. Tav4SB: integrating tools for analysis of kinetic models of biological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rybiński, Mikołaj; Lula, Michał; Banasik, Paweł; Lasota, Sławomir; Gambin, Anna

    2012-04-05

    Progress in the modeling of biological systems strongly relies on the availability of specialized computer-aided tools. To that end, the Taverna Workbench eases integration of software tools for life science research and provides a common workflow-based framework for computational experiments in Biology. The Taverna services for Systems Biology (Tav4SB) project provides a set of new Web service operations, which extend the functionality of the Taverna Workbench in a domain of systems biology. Tav4SB operations allow you to perform numerical simulations or model checking of, respectively, deterministic or stochastic semantics of biological models. On top of this functionality, Tav4SB enables the construction of high-level experiments. As an illustration of possibilities offered by our project we apply the multi-parameter sensitivity analysis. To visualize the results of model analysis a flexible plotting operation is provided as well. Tav4SB operations are executed in a simple grid environment, integrating heterogeneous software such as Mathematica, PRISM and SBML ODE Solver. The user guide, contact information, full documentation of available Web service operations, workflows and other additional resources can be found at the Tav4SB project's Web page: http://bioputer.mimuw.edu.pl/tav4sb/. The Tav4SB Web service provides a set of integrated tools in the domain for which Web-based applications are still not as widely available as for other areas of computational biology. Moreover, we extend the dedicated hardware base for computationally expensive task of simulating cellular models. Finally, we promote the standardization of models and experiments as well as accessibility and usability of remote services.

  6. Evidence for cognitive vestibular integration impairment in idiopathic scoliosis patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mercier Pierre

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis is characterized by a three-dimensional deviation of the vertebral column and its etiopathogenesis is unknown. Various factors cause idiopathic scoliosis, and among these a prominent role has been attributed to the vestibular system. While the deficits in sensorimotor transformations have been documented in idiopathic scoliosis patients, little attention has been devoted to their capacity to integrate vestibular information for cognitive processing for space perception. Seated idiopathic scoliosis patients and control subjects experienced rotations of different directions and amplitudes in the dark and produced saccades that would reproduce their perceived spatial characteristics of the rotations (vestibular condition. We also controlled for possible alteration of the oculomotor and vestibular systems by measuring the subject's accuracy in producing saccades towards memorized peripheral targets in absence of body rotation and the gain of their vestibulo-ocular reflex. Results Compared to healthy controls, the idiopathic scoliosis patients underestimated the amplitude of their rotations. Moreover, the results revealed that idiopathic scoliosis patients produced accurate saccades to memorized peripheral targets in absence of body rotation and that their vestibulo-ocular reflex gain did not differ from that of control participants. Conclusion Overall, results of the present study demonstrate that idiopathic scoliosis patients have an alteration in cognitive integration of vestibular signals. It is possible that severe spine deformity developed partly due to impaired vestibular information travelling from the cerebellum to the vestibular cortical network or alteration in the cortical mechanisms processing the vestibular signals.

  7. The ASM-NSF Biology Scholars Program: An Evidence-Based Model for Faculty Development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Amy L; Pribbenow, Christine M

    2016-05-01

    The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) established its ASM-NSF (National Science Foundation) Biology Scholars Program (BSP) to promote undergraduate education reform by 1) supporting biologists to implement evidence-based teaching practices, 2) engaging life science professional societies to facilitate biologists' leadership in scholarly teaching within the discipline, and 3) participating in a teaching community that fosters disciplinary-level science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) reform. Since 2005, the program has utilized year-long residency training to provide a continuum of learning and practice centered on principles from the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) to more than 270 participants ("scholars") from biology and multiple other disciplines. Additionally, the program has recruited 11 life science professional societies to support faculty development in SoTL and discipline-based education research (DBER). To identify the BSP's long-term outcomes and impacts, ASM engaged an external evaluator to conduct a study of the program's 2010-2014 scholars (n = 127) and society partners. The study methods included online surveys, focus groups, participant observation, and analysis of various documents. Study participants indicate that the program achieved its proposed goals relative to scholarship, professional society impact, leadership, community, and faculty professional development. Although participants also identified barriers that hindered elements of their BSP participation, findings suggest that the program was essential to their development as faculty and provides evidence of the BSP as a model for other societies seeking to advance undergraduate science education reform. The BSP is the longest-standing faculty development program sponsored by a collective group of life science societies. This collaboration promotes success across a fragmented system of more than 80 societies representing the life sciences and helps

  8. The ASM-NSF Biology Scholars Program: An Evidence-Based Model for Faculty Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amy L. Chang

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The American Society for Microbiology (ASM established its ASM-NSF (National Science Foundation Biology Scholars Program (BSP to promote undergraduate education reform by 1 supporting biologists to implement evidence-based teaching practices, 2 engaging life science professional societies to facilitate biologists’ leadership in scholarly teaching within the discipline, and 3 participating in a teaching community that fosters disciplinary-level science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM reform. Since 2005, the program has utilized year-long residency training to provide a continuum of learning and practice centered on principles from the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL to more than 270 participants (“scholars” from biology and multiple other disciplines. Additionally, the program has recruited 11 life science professional societies to support faculty development in SoTL and discipline-based education research (DBER. To identify the BSP’s long-term outcomes and impacts, ASM engaged an external evaluator to conduct a study of the program’s 2010­–2014 scholars (n = 127 and society partners. The study methods included online surveys, focus groups, participant observation, and analysis of various documents. Study participants indicate that the program achieved its proposed goals relative to scholarship, professional society impact, leadership, community, and faculty professional development. Although participants also identified barriers that hindered elements of their BSP participation, findings suggest that the program was essential to their development as faculty and provides evidence of the BSP as a model for other societies seeking to advance undergraduate science education reform. The BSP is the longest-standing faculty development program sponsored by a collective group of life science societies. This collaboration promotes success across a fragmented system of more than 80 societies representing the life

  9. Measurement of the Ecological Integrity of Cerrado Streams Using Biological Metrics and the Index of Habitat Integrity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deusiano Florêncio dos Reis

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Generally, aquatic communities reflect the effects of anthropogenic changes such as deforestation or organic pollution. The Cerrado stands among the most threatened ecosystems by human activities in Brazil. In order to evaluate the ecological integrity of the streams in a preserved watershed in the Northern Cerrado biome corresponding to a mosaic of ecosystems in transition to the Amazonia biome in Brazil, biological metrics related to diversity, structure, and sensitivity of aquatic macroinvertebrates were calculated. Sampling included collections along stretches of 200 m of nine streams and measurements of abiotic variables (temperature, electrical conductivity, pH, total dissolved solids, dissolved oxygen, and discharge and the Index of Habitat Integrity (HII. The values of the abiotic variables and the HII indicated that most of the streams have good ecological integrity, due to high oxygen levels and low concentrations of dissolved solids and electric conductivity. Two streams showed altered HII scores mainly related to small dams for recreational and domestic use, use of Cerrado natural pasture for cattle raising, and spot deforestation in bathing areas. However, this finding is not reflected in the biological metrics that were used. Considering all nine streams, only two showed satisfactory ecological quality (measured by Biological Monitoring Working Party (BMWP, total richness, and EPT (Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera, and Trichoptera richness, only one of which had a low HII score. These results indicate that punctual measures of abiotic parameters do not reveal the long-term impacts of anthropic activities in these streams, including related fire management of pasture that annually alters the vegetation matrix and may act as a disturbance for the macroinvertebrate communities. Due to this, biomonitoring of low order streams in Cerrado ecosystems of the Northern Central Brazil by different biotic metrics and also physical attributes of the

  10. Evidence for the possible biological significance of the igf-1 gene alternative splicing in prostate cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anastassios ePhilippou

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I has been implicated in the pathogenesis of prostate cancer (PCa, since it plays a key role in cell proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis. The IGF-I actions are mediated mainly via its binding to the type I IGF receptor (IGF-IR, however IGF-I signaling via insulin receptor (IR and hybrid IGF-I/IR is also evident. Different IGF-I mRNA splice variants, namely IGF-IEa, IGF-IEb and IGF-IEc, are expressed in human cells and tissues. These transcripts encode several IGF-I precursor proteins which contain the same bioactive product (mature IGF-I, however, they differ by the length of their signal peptides on the amino-terminal end and the structure of the extension peptides (E-peptides on the carboxy-terminal end. There is an increasing interest in the possible different role of the IGF-I transcripts and their respective non-(matureIGF-I products in the regulation of distinct biological activities. Moreover, there is strong evidence of a differential expression profile of the IGF-I splice variants in normal vs. PCa tissues and PCa cells, implying that the expression pattern of the various IGF-I transcripts and their respective protein products may possess different functions in cancer biology. Herein, the evidence that the IGF-IEc transcript regulates PCa growth via Ec-peptide specific and IGF-IR/IR-independent signaling is discussed.

  11. Meeting the Challenge of Preparing Social Workers for Integrated Health Practice: Evidence from Two MSW Cohorts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rishel, Carrie W.; Hartnett, Helen P.

    2017-01-01

    Changes in health care policy have led to an expansion of integrated care models that rely on collaboration among interprofessional health teams. Recent federal funding has encouraged the development of innovative training models to prepare social workers for integrated health practice. This article presents evidence from the first two MSW cohorts…

  12. Methods of integrating Islamic values in teaching biology for shaping attitude and character

    Science.gov (United States)

    Listyono; Supardi, K. I.; Hindarto, N.; Ridlo, S.

    2018-03-01

    Learning is expected to develop the potential of learners to have the spiritual attitude: moral strength, self-control, personality, intelligence, noble character, as well as the skills needed by themselves, society, and nation. Implementation of role and morale in learning is an alternative way which is expected to answer the challenge. The solution offered is to inject student with religious material Islamic in learning biology. The content value of materials teaching biology includes terms of practical value, religious values, daily life value, socio-political value, and the value of art. In Islamic religious values (Qur'an and Hadith) various methods can touch human feelings, souls, and generate motivation. Integrating learning with Islamic value can be done by the deductive or inductive approach. The appropriate method of integration is the amtsal (analog) method, hiwar (dialog) method, targhib & tarhib (encouragement & warning) method, and example method (giving a noble role model / good example). The right strategy in integrating Islamic values is outlined in the design of lesson plan. The integration of Islamic values in lesson plan will facilitate teachers to build students' character because Islamic values can be implemented in every learning steps so students will be accustomed to receiving the character value in this integrated learning.

  13. Integrating research evidence and physical activity policy making-REPOPA project

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aro, A.R.; Bertram, M.; Hamalainen, R.-M.; van de Goor, L.A.M.; Skovgaard, T.; Valente, A.; Castellani, T.; Chereches, R.; Edwards, N.

    2016-01-01

    Evidence shows that regular physical activity is enhanced by supporting environment. Studies are needed to integrate research evidence into health enhancing, cross-sector physical activity (HEPA) policy making. This article presents the rationale, study design, measurement procedures and the initial

  14. PathJam: a new service for integrating biological pathway information

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Glez-Peña Daniel

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Biological pathways are crucial to much of the scientific research today including the study of specific biological processes related with human diseases. PathJam is a new comprehensive and freely accessible web-server application integrating scattered human pathway annotation from several public sources. The tool has been designed for both (i being intuitive for wet-lab users providing statistical enrichment analysis of pathway annotations and (ii giving support to the development of new integrative pathway applications. PathJam’s unique features and advantages include interactive graphs linking pathways and genes of interest, downloadable results in fully compatible formats, GSEA compatible output files and a standardized RESTful API.

  15. Integration of pore features into the evaluation of fingerprint evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anthonioz, Alexandre; Champod, Christophe

    2014-01-01

    Fingerprint practitioners rely on level 3 features to make decisions in relation to the source of an unknown friction ridge skin impression. This research proposes to assess the strength of evidence associated with pores when shown in (dis)agreement between a mark and a reference print. Based upon an algorithm designed to automatically detect pores, a metric is defined in order to compare different impressions. From this metric, the weight of the findings is quantified using a likelihood ratio. The results obtained on four configurations and 54 donors show the significant contribution of the pore features and translate into statistical terms what latent fingerprint examiners have developed holistically through experience. The system provides LRs that are indicative of the true state under both the prosecution and the defense propositions. Not only such a system brings transparency regarding the weight to assign to such features, but also forces a discussion in relation to the risks of such a model to mislead. © 2013 American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

  16. Biosocial Conservation: Integrating Biological and Ethnographic Methods to Study Human-Primate Interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Setchell, Joanna M; Fairet, Emilie; Shutt, Kathryn; Waters, Siân; Bell, Sandra

    2017-01-01

    Biodiversity conservation is one of the grand challenges facing society. Many people interested in biodiversity conservation have a background in wildlife biology. However, the diverse social, cultural, political, and historical factors that influence the lives of people and wildlife can be investigated fully only by incorporating social science methods, ideally within an interdisciplinary framework. Cultural hierarchies of knowledge and the hegemony of the natural sciences create a barrier to interdisciplinary understandings. Here, we review three different projects that confront this difficulty, integrating biological and ethnographic methods to study conservation problems. The first project involved wildlife foraging on crops around a newly established national park in Gabon. Biological methods revealed the extent of crop loss, the species responsible, and an effect of field isolation, while ethnography revealed institutional and social vulnerability to foraging wildlife. The second project concerned great ape tourism in the Central African Republic. Biological methods revealed that gorilla tourism poses risks to gorillas, while ethnography revealed why people seek close proximity to gorillas. The third project focused on humans and other primates living alongside one another in Morocco. Incorporating shepherds in the coproduction of ecological knowledge about primates built trust and altered attitudes to the primates. These three case studies demonstrate how the integration of biological and social methods can help us to understand the sustainability of human-wildlife interactions, and thus promote coexistence. In each case, an integrated biosocial approach incorporating ethnographic data produced results that would not otherwise have come to light. Research that transcends conventional academic boundaries requires the openness and flexibility to move beyond one's comfort zone to understand and acknowledge the legitimacy of "other" kinds of knowledge. It is

  17. Root Systems Biology: Integrative Modeling across Scales, from Gene Regulatory Networks to the Rhizosphere1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Kristine; Porco, Silvana; Lobet, Guillaume; Zappala, Susan; Mooney, Sacha; Draye, Xavier; Bennett, Malcolm J.

    2013-01-01

    Genetic and genomic approaches in model organisms have advanced our understanding of root biology over the last decade. Recently, however, systems biology and modeling have emerged as important approaches, as our understanding of root regulatory pathways has become more complex and interpreting pathway outputs has become less intuitive. To relate root genotype to phenotype, we must move beyond the examination of interactions at the genetic network scale and employ multiscale modeling approaches to predict emergent properties at the tissue, organ, organism, and rhizosphere scales. Understanding the underlying biological mechanisms and the complex interplay between systems at these different scales requires an integrative approach. Here, we describe examples of such approaches and discuss the merits of developing models to span multiple scales, from network to population levels, and to address dynamic interactions between plants and their environment. PMID:24143806

  18. Integrating external biological knowledge in the construction of regulatory networks from time-series expression data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lo Kenneth

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Inference about regulatory networks from high-throughput genomics data is of great interest in systems biology. We present a Bayesian approach to infer gene regulatory networks from time series expression data by integrating various types of biological knowledge. Results We formulate network construction as a series of variable selection problems and use linear regression to model the data. Our method summarizes additional data sources with an informative prior probability distribution over candidate regression models. We extend the Bayesian model averaging (BMA variable selection method to select regulators in the regression framework. We summarize the external biological knowledge by an informative prior probability distribution over the candidate regression models. Conclusions We demonstrate our method on simulated data and a set of time-series microarray experiments measuring the effect of a drug perturbation on gene expression levels, and show that it outperforms leading regression-based methods in the literature.

  19. Biologic and clinical aspects of integration of different bone substitutes in oral surgery: a literature review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zizzari, Vincenzo Luca; Zara, Susi; Tetè, Giulia; Vinci, Raffaele; Gherlone, Enrico; Cataldi, Amelia

    2016-10-01

    Many bone substitutes have been proposed for bone regeneration, and researchers have focused on the interactions occurring between grafts and host tissue, as the biologic response of host tissue is related to the origin of the biomaterial. Bone substitutes used in oral and maxillofacial surgery could be categorized according to their biologic origin and source as autologous bone graft when obtained from the same individual receiving the graft; homologous bone graft, or allograft, when harvested from an individual other than the one receiving the graft; animal-derived heterologous bone graft, or xenograft, when derived from a species other than human; and alloplastic graft, made of bone substitute of synthetic origin. The aim of this review is to describe the most commonly used bone substitutes, according to their origin, and to focus on the biologic events that ultimately lead to the integration of a biomaterial with the host tissue. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Improving integrative searching of systems chemical biology data using semantic annotation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bin; Ding, Ying; Wild, David J

    2012-03-08

    Systems chemical biology and chemogenomics are considered critical, integrative disciplines in modern biomedical research, but require data mining of large, integrated, heterogeneous datasets from chemistry and biology. We previously developed an RDF-based resource called Chem2Bio2RDF that enabled querying of such data using the SPARQL query language. Whilst this work has proved useful in its own right as one of the first major resources in these disciplines, its utility could be greatly improved by the application of an ontology for annotation of the nodes and edges in the RDF graph, enabling a much richer range of semantic queries to be issued. We developed a generalized chemogenomics and systems chemical biology OWL ontology called Chem2Bio2OWL that describes the semantics of chemical compounds, drugs, protein targets, pathways, genes, diseases and side-effects, and the relationships between them. The ontology also includes data provenance. We used it to annotate our Chem2Bio2RDF dataset, making it a rich semantic resource. Through a series of scientific case studies we demonstrate how this (i) simplifies the process of building SPARQL queries, (ii) enables useful new kinds of queries on the data and (iii) makes possible intelligent reasoning and semantic graph mining in chemogenomics and systems chemical biology. Chem2Bio2OWL is available at http://chem2bio2rdf.org/owl. The document is available at http://chem2bio2owl.wikispaces.com.

  1. Biological and psychological rhythms: an integrative approach to rhythm disturbances in autistic disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Botbol, Michel; Cabon, Philippe; Kermarrec, Solenn; Tordjman, Sylvie

    2013-09-01

    Biological rhythms are crucial phenomena that are perfect examples of the adaptation of organisms to their environment. A considerable amount of work has described different types of biological rhythms (from circadian to ultradian), individual differences in their patterns and the complexity of their regulation. In particular, the regulation and maturation of the sleep-wake cycle have been thoroughly studied. Its desynchronization, both endogenous and exogenous, is now well understood, as are its consequences for cognitive impairments and health problems. From a completely different perspective, psychoanalysts have shown a growing interest in the rhythms of psychic life. This interest extends beyond the original focus of psychoanalysis on dreams and the sleep-wake cycle, incorporating central theoretical and practical psychoanalytic issues related to the core functioning of the psychic life: the rhythmic structures of drive dynamics, intersubjective developmental processes and psychic containment functions. Psychopathological and biological approaches to the study of infantile autism reveal the importance of specific biological and psychological rhythmic disturbances in this disorder. Considering data and hypotheses from both perspectives, this paper proposes an integrative approach to the study of these rhythmic disturbances and offers an etiopathogenic hypothesis based on this integrative approach. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Conservation Biology and Traditional Ecological Knowledge: Integrating Academic Disciplines for Better Conservation Practice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joshua A. Drew

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Conservation biology and environmental anthropology are disciplines that are both concerned with the identification and preservation of diversity, in one case biological and in the other cultural. Both conservation biology and the study of traditional ecoloigcal knowledge function at the nexus of the social and natural worlds, yet historically there have been major impediments to integrating the two. Here we identify linguistic, cultural, and epistemological barriers between the two disciplines. We argue that the two disciplines are uniquely positioned to inform each other and to provide critical insights and new perspectives on the way these sciences are practiced. We conclude by synthesizing common themes found in conservation success stories, and by making several suggestions on integration. These include cross-disciplinary publication, expanding memberships in professional societies and conducting multidisciplinary research based on similar interests in ecological process, taxonomy, or geography. Finally, we argue that extinction threats, be they biological or cultural/linguistic are imminent, and that by bringing these disciplines together we may be able to forge synergistic conservation programs capable of protecting the vivid splendor of life on Earth.

  3. Improving integrative searching of systems chemical biology data using semantic annotation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen Bin

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Systems chemical biology and chemogenomics are considered critical, integrative disciplines in modern biomedical research, but require data mining of large, integrated, heterogeneous datasets from chemistry and biology. We previously developed an RDF-based resource called Chem2Bio2RDF that enabled querying of such data using the SPARQL query language. Whilst this work has proved useful in its own right as one of the first major resources in these disciplines, its utility could be greatly improved by the application of an ontology for annotation of the nodes and edges in the RDF graph, enabling a much richer range of semantic queries to be issued. Results We developed a generalized chemogenomics and systems chemical biology OWL ontology called Chem2Bio2OWL that describes the semantics of chemical compounds, drugs, protein targets, pathways, genes, diseases and side-effects, and the relationships between them. The ontology also includes data provenance. We used it to annotate our Chem2Bio2RDF dataset, making it a rich semantic resource. Through a series of scientific case studies we demonstrate how this (i simplifies the process of building SPARQL queries, (ii enables useful new kinds of queries on the data and (iii makes possible intelligent reasoning and semantic graph mining in chemogenomics and systems chemical biology. Availability Chem2Bio2OWL is available at http://chem2bio2rdf.org/owl. The document is available at http://chem2bio2owl.wikispaces.com.

  4. Development and Assessment of Modules to Integrate Quantitative Skills in Introductory Biology Courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffman, Kathleen; Leupen, Sarah; Dowell, Kathy; Kephart, Kerrie; Leips, Jeff

    2016-01-01

    Redesigning undergraduate biology courses to integrate quantitative reasoning and skill development is critical to prepare students for careers in modern medicine and scientific research. In this paper, we report on the development, implementation, and assessment of stand-alone modules that integrate quantitative reasoning into introductory biology courses. Modules are designed to improve skills in quantitative numeracy, interpreting data sets using visual tools, and making inferences about biological phenomena using mathematical/statistical models. We also examine demographic/background data that predict student improvement in these skills through exposure to these modules. We carried out pre/postassessment tests across four semesters and used student interviews in one semester to examine how students at different levels approached quantitative problems. We found that students improved in all skills in most semesters, although there was variation in the degree of improvement among skills from semester to semester. One demographic variable, transfer status, stood out as a major predictor of the degree to which students improved (transfer students achieved much lower gains every semester, despite the fact that pretest scores in each focus area were similar between transfer and nontransfer students). We propose that increased exposure to quantitative skill development in biology courses is effective at building competency in quantitative reasoning. © 2016 K. Hoffman, S. Leupen, et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  5. Collinear facilitation and contour integration in autism: evidence for atypical visual integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jachim, Stephen; Warren, Paul A; McLoughlin, Niall; Gowen, Emma

    2015-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by impaired social interaction, atypical communication and a restricted repertoire of interests and activities. Altered sensory and perceptual experiences are also common, and a notable perceptual difference between individuals with ASD and controls is their superior performance in visual tasks where it may be beneficial to ignore global context. This superiority may be the result of atypical integrative processing. To explore this claim we investigated visual integration in adults with ASD (diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome) using two psychophysical tasks thought to rely on integrative processing-collinear facilitation and contour integration. We measured collinear facilitation at different flanker orientation offsets and contour integration for both open and closed contours. Our results indicate that compared to matched controls, ASD participants show (i) reduced collinear facilitation, despite equivalent performance without flankers; and (ii) less benefit from closed contours in contour integration. These results indicate weaker visuospatial integration in adults with ASD and suggest that further studies using these types of paradigms would provide knowledge on how contextual processing is altered in ASD.

  6. Collinear facilitation and contour integration in autism: evidence for atypical visual integration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen eJachim

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Autism spectrum disorder (ASD is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by impaired social interaction, atypical communication and a restricted repertoire of interests and activities. Altered sensory and perceptual experiences are also common, and a notable perceptual difference between individuals with ASD and controls is their superior performance in visual tasks where it may be beneficial to ignore global context. This superiority may be the result of atypical integrative processing. To explore this claim we investigated visual integration in adults with ASD (diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome using two psychophysical tasks thought to rely on integrative processing - collinear facilitation and contour integration. We measured collinear facilitation at different flanker orientation offsets and contour integration for both open and closed contours. Our results indicate that compared to matched controls, ASD participants show (i reduced collinear facilitation, despite equivalent performance without flankers and (ii less benefit from closed contours in contour integration. These results indicate weaker visuospatial integration in adults with ASD and suggest that further studies using these types of paradigms would provide knowledge on how contextual processing is altered in ASD.

  7. Fuzzy method of recognition of high molecular substances in evidence-based biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olevskyi, V. I.; Smetanin, V. T.; Olevska, Yu. B.

    2017-10-01

    Nowadays modern requirements to achieving reliable results along with high quality of researches put mathematical analysis methods of results at the forefront. Because of this, evidence-based methods of processing experimental data have become increasingly popular in the biological sciences and medicine. Their basis is meta-analysis, a method of quantitative generalization of a large number of randomized trails contributing to a same special problem, which are often contradictory and performed by different authors. It allows identifying the most important trends and quantitative indicators of the data, verification of advanced hypotheses and discovering new effects in the population genotype. The existing methods of recognizing high molecular substances by gel electrophoresis of proteins under denaturing conditions are based on approximate methods for comparing the contrast of electrophoregrams with a standard solution of known substances. We propose a fuzzy method for modeling experimental data to increase the accuracy and validity of the findings of the detection of new proteins.

  8. Periodontal manifestations of inflammatory bowel disease: emerging epidemiologic and biologic evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agossa, K; Dendooven, A; Dubuquoy, L; Gower-Rousseau, C; Delcourt-Debruyne, E; Capron, M

    2017-06-01

    Inflammatory bowel disease and periodontitis are both described as a disproportionate mucosal inflammatory response to a microbial environment in susceptible patients. Moreover, these two conditions share major environmental and lifestyle-related risk factors. Despite this intriguing pathogenic parallel, large-scale studies and basic research have only recently considered periodontal outcomes as relevant data. There are mounting and consistent arguments, from recent epidemiologic studies and animal models, that these two conditions might be related. This article is a comprehensive and critical up-to-date review of the current evidence and future prospects in understanding the biologic and epidemiologic relationships between periodontal status and inflammatory bowel disease. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. IS IT POSSIBLE TO INTEGRATE BASIC BIOLOGICAL DISCIPLINES IN A PRIVATE INSTITUTION?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L.A. Azzalis

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Basic biological disciplines as biochemistry, genetic and molecular biology have grown faster than any of other sciences. Moreover, those disciplines contribute to the understanding and treatment of an elevated number of illnesses. On the other hand, teachers cannot assure the graduating students that each particular discipline  is essential.  Furthermore,  those disciplines are often studied separately without any interdisciplinary integration between them.  The new curriculum proposed at Anhembi Morumbi University  - a private institution placed at São Paulo city  - incorporates learning blocks that  have been designed to integrate basic biological disciplines and clinical contents from the beginning in order to provide the stimulation and motivation to guide the  student through his learning.  The educational trend has concentrated on the following steps: 1 Biochemistry, genetic, cellular and molecular biology teachers´ from that institution have elaborated a new discipline  that was named Biologic Process. The aim of this new discipline was integrate basic biological sciences in a single content;  2  Selecting problems that could be discussed in the light of biochemistry, genetic and molecular contents; e.g. sickle cell anemia; 3 Developing  an innovative instructional method that challenges students “learn to learn” different from problem-based learning , economically unavailable at any particular university,  and  4 Assessments that measure knowledge, skills, attitudes and beliefs.  We believe that the future pedagogical system in  private health university will be a combination of “classical”  presentation of contents combined with actively involved students in the educational process and instruction based on either hypothetical  or real clinical cases in order to create  the stimulus for  the student continues to  integrate basic and clinical investigation.

  10. [Problems of world outlook and methodology of science integration in biological studies].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khododova, Iu D

    1981-01-01

    Problems of worldoutlook and methodology of the natural-science knowledge are considered basing on the analysis of tendencies in the development of the membrane theory of cell processes and the use of principles of biological membrane functioning when solving some scientific and applied problems pertaining to different branches of chemistry and biology. The notion scientific knowledge integration is defined as interpenetration of approaches, methods and ideas of different branches of knowledge and enrichment on this basis of their content resulting in knowledge augmentation in each field taken separately. These processes are accompanied by appearance of new branches of knowledge - sciences "on junction" and their subsequent differentiations. The analysis of some gnoseological situations shows that integration of sciences contributes to coordination and some agreement of thinking styles of different specialists, puts forward keen personality of a scientist demanding, in particular, his high professional mobility. Problems of scientific activity organization are considered, which involve social sciences into the integration processes. The role of philosophy in the integration processes is emphasized.

  11. ChlamyCyc: an integrative systems biology database and web-portal for Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kempa Stefan

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii is an important eukaryotic model organism for the study of photosynthesis and plant growth. In the era of modern high-throughput technologies there is an imperative need to integrate large-scale data sets from high-throughput experimental techniques using computational methods and database resources to provide comprehensive information about the molecular and cellular organization of a single organism. Results In the framework of the German Systems Biology initiative GoFORSYS, a pathway database and web-portal for Chlamydomonas (ChlamyCyc was established, which currently features about 250 metabolic pathways with associated genes, enzymes, and compound information. ChlamyCyc was assembled using an integrative approach combining the recently published genome sequence, bioinformatics methods, and experimental data from metabolomics and proteomics experiments. We analyzed and integrated a combination of primary and secondary database resources, such as existing genome annotations from JGI, EST collections, orthology information, and MapMan classification. Conclusion ChlamyCyc provides a curated and integrated systems biology repository that will enable and assist in systematic studies of fundamental cellular processes in Chlamydomonas. The ChlamyCyc database and web-portal is freely available under http://chlamycyc.mpimp-golm.mpg.de.

  12. ChlamyCyc: an integrative systems biology database and web-portal for Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    May, Patrick; Christian, Jan-Ole; Kempa, Stefan; Walther, Dirk

    2009-05-04

    The unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii is an important eukaryotic model organism for the study of photosynthesis and plant growth. In the era of modern high-throughput technologies there is an imperative need to integrate large-scale data sets from high-throughput experimental techniques using computational methods and database resources to provide comprehensive information about the molecular and cellular organization of a single organism. In the framework of the German Systems Biology initiative GoFORSYS, a pathway database and web-portal for Chlamydomonas (ChlamyCyc) was established, which currently features about 250 metabolic pathways with associated genes, enzymes, and compound information. ChlamyCyc was assembled using an integrative approach combining the recently published genome sequence, bioinformatics methods, and experimental data from metabolomics and proteomics experiments. We analyzed and integrated a combination of primary and secondary database resources, such as existing genome annotations from JGI, EST collections, orthology information, and MapMan classification. ChlamyCyc provides a curated and integrated systems biology repository that will enable and assist in systematic studies of fundamental cellular processes in Chlamydomonas. The ChlamyCyc database and web-portal is freely available under http://chlamycyc.mpimp-golm.mpg.de.

  13. Smectite clays in Mars soil - Evidence for their presence and role in Viking biology experimental results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banin, A.; Rishpon, J.

    1979-01-01

    Evidence for the presence of smectite clays in Martian soils is reviewed and results of experiments with certain active clays simulating the Viking biology experiments are reported. Analyses of Martian soil composition by means of X-ray fluorescence spectrometry and dust storm spectroscopy and Martian geological history strongly suggest the presence of a mixture of weathered ferro-silicate minerals, mainly nontronite and montmorillonite, accompanied by soluble sulphate salts, as major constituents. Samples of montmorillonite and nontronite incubated with (C-14)-formate or the radioactive nutrient medium solution used in the Viking Labeled Release experiment, were found to produce patterns of release of radioactive gas very similar to those observed in the Viking experiments, indicating the iron-catalyzed decomposition of formate as the reaction responsible for the Viking results. The experimental results of Hubbard (1979) simulating the results of the Viking Pyrolytic Release experiment using iron montmorillonites are pointed out, and it is concluded that many of the results of the Viking biology experiments can be explained in terms of the surface activity of smectite clays in catalysis and adsorption.

  14. Integration of genome-wide association studies with biological knowledge identifies six novel genes related to kidney function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chasman, Daniel I; Fuchsberger, Christian; Pattaro, Cristian; Teumer, Alexander; Böger, Carsten A; Endlich, Karlhans; Olden, Matthias; Chen, Ming-Huei; Tin, Adrienne; Taliun, Daniel; Li, Man; Gao, Xiaoyi; Gorski, Mathias; Yang, Qiong; Hundertmark, Claudia; Foster, Meredith C; O'Seaghdha, Conall M; Glazer, Nicole; Isaacs, Aaron; Liu, Ching-Ti; Smith, Albert V; O'Connell, Jeffrey R; Struchalin, Maksim; Tanaka, Toshiko; Li, Guo; Johnson, Andrew D; Gierman, Hinco J; Feitosa, Mary F; Hwang, Shih-Jen; Atkinson, Elizabeth J; Lohman, Kurt; Cornelis, Marilyn C; Johansson, Asa; Tönjes, Anke; Dehghan, Abbas; Lambert, Jean-Charles; Holliday, Elizabeth G; Sorice, Rossella; Kutalik, Zoltan; Lehtimäki, Terho; Esko, Tõnu; Deshmukh, Harshal; Ulivi, Sheila; Chu, Audrey Y; Murgia, Federico; Trompet, Stella; Imboden, Medea; Coassin, Stefan; Pistis, Giorgio; Harris, Tamara B; Launer, Lenore J; Aspelund, Thor; Eiriksdottir, Gudny; Mitchell, Braxton D; Boerwinkle, Eric; Schmidt, Helena; Cavalieri, Margherita; Rao, Madhumathi; Hu, Frank; Demirkan, Ayse; Oostra, Ben A; de Andrade, Mariza; Turner, Stephen T; Ding, Jingzhong; Andrews, Jeanette S; Freedman, Barry I; Giulianini, Franco; Koenig, Wolfgang; Illig, Thomas; Meisinger, Christa; Gieger, Christian; Zgaga, Lina; Zemunik, Tatijana; Boban, Mladen; Minelli, Cosetta; Wheeler, Heather E; Igl, Wilmar; Zaboli, Ghazal; Wild, Sarah H; Wright, Alan F; Campbell, Harry; Ellinghaus, David; Nöthlings, Ute; Jacobs, Gunnar; Biffar, Reiner; Ernst, Florian; Homuth, Georg; Kroemer, Heyo K; Nauck, Matthias; Stracke, Sylvia; Völker, Uwe; Völzke, Henry; Kovacs, Peter; Stumvoll, Michael; Mägi, Reedik; Hofman, Albert; Uitterlinden, Andre G; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Aulchenko, Yurii S; Polasek, Ozren; Hastie, Nick; Vitart, Veronique; Helmer, Catherine; Wang, Jie Jin; Stengel, Bénédicte; Ruggiero, Daniela; Bergmann, Sven; Kähönen, Mika; Viikari, Jorma; Nikopensius, Tiit; Province, Michael; Ketkar, Shamika; Colhoun, Helen; Doney, Alex; Robino, Antonietta; Krämer, Bernhard K; Portas, Laura; Ford, Ian; Buckley, Brendan M; Adam, Martin; Thun, Gian-Andri; Paulweber, Bernhard; Haun, Margot; Sala, Cinzia; Mitchell, Paul; Ciullo, Marina; Kim, Stuart K; Vollenweider, Peter; Raitakari, Olli; Metspalu, Andres; Palmer, Colin; Gasparini, Paolo; Pirastu, Mario; Jukema, J Wouter; Probst-Hensch, Nicole M; Kronenberg, Florian; Toniolo, Daniela; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Shuldiner, Alan R; Coresh, Josef; Schmidt, Reinhold; Ferrucci, Luigi; Siscovick, David S; van Duijn, Cornelia M; Borecki, Ingrid B; Kardia, Sharon L R; Liu, Yongmei; Curhan, Gary C; Rudan, Igor; Gyllensten, Ulf; Wilson, James F; Franke, Andre; Pramstaller, Peter P; Rettig, Rainer; Prokopenko, Inga; Witteman, Jacqueline; Hayward, Caroline; Ridker, Paul M; Parsa, Afshin; Bochud, Murielle; Heid, Iris M; Kao, W H Linda; Fox, Caroline S; Köttgen, Anna

    2012-12-15

    In conducting genome-wide association studies (GWAS), analytical approaches leveraging biological information may further understanding of the pathophysiology of clinical traits. To discover novel associations with estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), a measure of kidney function, we developed a strategy for integrating prior biological knowledge into the existing GWAS data for eGFR from the CKDGen Consortium. Our strategy focuses on single nucleotide polymorphism (SNPs) in genes that are connected by functional evidence, determined by literature mining and gene ontology (GO) hierarchies, to genes near previously validated eGFR associations. It then requires association thresholds consistent with multiple testing, and finally evaluates novel candidates by independent replication. Among the samples of European ancestry, we identified a genome-wide significant SNP in FBXL20 (P = 5.6 × 10(-9)) in meta-analysis of all available data, and additional SNPs at the INHBC, LRP2, PLEKHA1, SLC3A2 and SLC7A6 genes meeting multiple-testing corrected significance for replication and overall P-values of 4.5 × 10(-4)-2.2 × 10(-7). Neither the novel PLEKHA1 nor FBXL20 associations, both further supported by association with eGFR among African Americans and with transcript abundance, would have been implicated by eGFR candidate gene approaches. LRP2, encoding the megalin receptor, was identified through connection with the previously known eGFR gene DAB2 and extends understanding of the megalin system in kidney function. These findings highlight integration of existing genome-wide association data with independent biological knowledge to uncover novel candidate eGFR associations, including candidates lacking known connections to kidney-specific pathways. The strategy may also be applicable to other clinical phenotypes, although more testing will be needed to assess its potential for discovery in general.

  15. Multi-omic data integration enables discovery of hidden biological regularities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ebrahim, Ali; Brunk, Elizabeth; Tan, Justin

    2016-01-01

    Rapid growth in size and complexity of biological data sets has led to the 'Big Data to Knowledge' challenge. We develop advanced data integration methods for multi- level analysis of genomic, transcriptomic, ribosomal profiling, proteomic and fluxomic data. First, we show that pairwise integration...... of primary omics data reveals regularities that tie cellular processes together in Escherichia coli: the number of protein molecules made per mRNA transcript and the number of ribosomes required per translated protein molecule. Second, we show that genome- scale models, based on genomic and bibliomic data......, enable quantitative synchronization of disparate data types. Integrating omics data with models enabled the discovery of two novel regularities: condition invariant in vivo turnover rates of enzymes and the correlation of protein structural motifs and translational pausing. These regularities can...

  16. Implementing the Integrated Strategy for the Cultural Adaptation of Evidence-Based Interventions: An Illustration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sidani, Souraya; Ibrahim, Sarah; Lok, Jana; Fan, Lifeng; Fox, Mary

    2018-01-01

    Background Persons' cultural beliefs about a health problem can affect their perceived acceptability of evidence-based interventions, undermining evidence-based interventions' adherence, and uptake to manage the problem. Cultural adaptation has the potential to enhance the acceptability, uptake, and adherence to evidence-based interventions. Purpose To illustrate the implementation of the first two phases of the integrated strategy for cultural adaptation by examining Chinese Canadians' perceptions of chronic insomnia and evidence-based behavioral therapies for insomnia. Methods Chinese Canadians ( n = 14) with chronic insomnia attended a group session during which they completed established instruments measuring beliefs about sleep and insomnia, and their perceptions of factors that contribute to chronic insomnia. Participants rated the acceptability of evidence-based behavioral therapies and discussed their cultural perspectives regarding chronic insomnia and its treatment. Results Participants actively engaged in the activities planned for the first two phases of the integrated strategy and identified the most significant factor contributing to chronic insomnia and the evidence-based intervention most acceptable for their cultural group. Conclusions The protocol for implementing the two phases of the integrated strategy for cultural adaptation of evidence-based interventions was feasible, acceptable, and useful in identifying culturally relevant evidence-based interventions.

  17. iTools: a framework for classification, categorization and integration of computational biology resources.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivo D Dinov

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available The advancement of the computational biology field hinges on progress in three fundamental directions--the development of new computational algorithms, the availability of informatics resource management infrastructures and the capability of tools to interoperate and synergize. There is an explosion in algorithms and tools for computational biology, which makes it difficult for biologists to find, compare and integrate such resources. We describe a new infrastructure, iTools, for managing the query, traversal and comparison of diverse computational biology resources. Specifically, iTools stores information about three types of resources--data, software tools and web-services. The iTools design, implementation and resource meta-data content reflect the broad research, computational, applied and scientific expertise available at the seven National Centers for Biomedical Computing. iTools provides a system for classification, categorization and integration of different computational biology resources across space-and-time scales, biomedical problems, computational infrastructures and mathematical foundations. A large number of resources are already iTools-accessible to the community and this infrastructure is rapidly growing. iTools includes human and machine interfaces to its resource meta-data repository. Investigators or computer programs may utilize these interfaces to search, compare, expand, revise and mine meta-data descriptions of existent computational biology resources. We propose two ways to browse and display the iTools dynamic collection of resources. The first one is based on an ontology of computational biology resources, and the second one is derived from hyperbolic projections of manifolds or complex structures onto planar discs. iTools is an open source project both in terms of the source code development as well as its meta-data content. iTools employs a decentralized, portable, scalable and lightweight framework for long

  18. A systems approach to integrative biology: an overview of statistical methods to elucidate association and architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciaccio, Mark F; Finkle, Justin D; Xue, Albert Y; Bagheri, Neda

    2014-07-01

    An organism's ability to maintain a desired physiological response relies extensively on how cellular and molecular signaling networks interpret and react to environmental cues. The capacity to quantitatively predict how networks respond to a changing environment by modifying signaling regulation and phenotypic responses will help inform and predict the impact of a changing global enivronment on organisms and ecosystems. Many computational strategies have been developed to resolve cue-signal-response networks. However, selecting a strategy that answers a specific biological question requires knowledge both of the type of data being collected, and of the strengths and weaknesses of different computational regimes. We broadly explore several computational approaches, and we evaluate their accuracy in predicting a given response. Specifically, we describe how statistical algorithms can be used in the context of integrative and comparative biology to elucidate the genomic, proteomic, and/or cellular networks responsible for robust physiological response. As a case study, we apply this strategy to a dataset of quantitative levels of protein abundance from the mussel, Mytilus galloprovincialis, to uncover the temperature-dependent signaling network. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Interchangeability of biosimilar and biological reference product: updated regulatory positions and pre- and post-marketing evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trifirò, Gianluca; Marcianò, Ilaria; Ingrasciotta, Ylenia

    2018-03-01

    Since 2006, biosimilars have been available in several countries worldwide, thus allowing for potential savings in pharmaceutical expenditure. However, there have been numerous debates about the interchangeability of biosimilars and reference products based on concerns of immunogenicity by switching between biological products, which may cause lack of effect and toxicity. Areas covered: The authors provide the reader with an overview of the different positions of regulatory authorities on the interchangeability and automatic substitution of biosimilars and reference products. Presently, the FDA allows automatic substitution without prescriber intervention if the biosimilar is interchangeable with reference products, while the European Medicines Agency delegate to each single EU member state. Expert opinion: Different approaches in defining interchangeability and automatic substitution call for harmonization to increase confidence of healthcare professionals and patients about the clinical impact of switching. Networks of electronic healthcare records and administrative databases, potentially linkable to clinical charts and registries may rapidly assess frequency and benefit-risk profile of different switching patterns in routine care at different levels, thus integrating and strengthening pre-marketing evidence.

  20. Biological evidence of low ionizing radiation doses; Biologischer Nachweis niedriger Dosen ionisierender Strahlung

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mirsch, Johanna

    2017-03-17

    Throughout life, every person is constantly exposed to different types of ionising radiation, without even noticing the exposure. The mean radiation exposure for people living in Germany amounts to approximately 4 mSv per year and encompasses the exposure from natural and man-made sources. The risks associated with exposure to low doses of radiation are still the subject of intense and highly controversial discussions, emphasizing the social relevance of studies investigating the effects of low radiation doses. In this thesis, DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) were analyzed within three projects covering different aspects. DSBs are among the most hazardous DNA lesions induced by ionizing radiation, because this type of damage can easily lead to the loss of genetic information. Consequently, the DSB presents a high risk for the genetic integrity of the cell. In the first project, extensive results uncovered the track structure of charged particles in a biological model tissue. This provided the first biological data that could be used for comparison with data that were measured or predicted using theoretical physical dosimetry methods and mathematical simulations. Charged particles contribute significantly to the natural radiation exposure and are used increasingly in cancer radiotherapy because they are more efficient in tumor cell killing than X- or γ-rays. The difference in the biological effects of high energy charged particles compared with X- or γ-rays is largely determined by the spatial distribution of their energy deposition and the track structure inducing a three-dimensional damage pattern in living cells. This damage pattern consists of cells directly hit by the particle receiving a high dose and neighboring cells not directly hit by primary particles but exposed to far-reaching secondary electrons (δ-electrons). These cells receive a much lower dose deposition in the order of a few mGy. The radial dose distribution of single particle tracks was

  1. A review on machine learning principles for multi-view biological data integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yifeng; Wu, Fang-Xiang; Ngom, Alioune

    2018-03-01

    Driven by high-throughput sequencing techniques, modern genomic and clinical studies are in a strong need of integrative machine learning models for better use of vast volumes of heterogeneous information in the deep understanding of biological systems and the development of predictive models. How data from multiple sources (called multi-view data) are incorporated in a learning system is a key step for successful analysis. In this article, we provide a comprehensive review on omics and clinical data integration techniques, from a machine learning perspective, for various analyses such as prediction, clustering, dimension reduction and association. We shall show that Bayesian models are able to use prior information and model measurements with various distributions; tree-based methods can either build a tree with all features or collectively make a final decision based on trees learned from each view; kernel methods fuse the similarity matrices learned from individual views together for a final similarity matrix or learning model; network-based fusion methods are capable of inferring direct and indirect associations in a heterogeneous network; matrix factorization models have potential to learn interactions among features from different views; and a range of deep neural networks can be integrated in multi-modal learning for capturing the complex mechanism of biological systems.

  2. BOWiki: an ontology-based wiki for annotation of data and integration of knowledge in biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregorio Sergio E

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Motivation Ontology development and the annotation of biological data using ontologies are time-consuming exercises that currently require input from expert curators. Open, collaborative platforms for biological data annotation enable the wider scientific community to become involved in developing and maintaining such resources. However, this openness raises concerns regarding the quality and correctness of the information added to these knowledge bases. The combination of a collaborative web-based platform with logic-based approaches and Semantic Web technology can be used to address some of these challenges and concerns. Results We have developed the BOWiki, a web-based system that includes a biological core ontology. The core ontology provides background knowledge about biological types and relations. Against this background, an automated reasoner assesses the consistency of new information added to the knowledge base. The system provides a platform for research communities to integrate information and annotate data collaboratively. Availability The BOWiki and supplementary material is available at http://www.bowiki.net/. The source code is available under the GNU GPL from http://onto.eva.mpg.de/trac/BoWiki.

  3. Adaptation of sensor morphology: an integrative view of perception from biologically inspired robotics perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nurzaman, Surya G.

    2016-01-01

    Sensor morphology, the morphology of a sensing mechanism which plays a role of shaping the desired response from physical stimuli from surroundings to generate signals usable as sensory information, is one of the key common aspects of sensing processes. This paper presents a structured review of researches on bioinspired sensor morphology implemented in robotic systems, and discusses the fundamental design principles. Based on literature review, we propose two key arguments: first, owing to its synthetic nature, biologically inspired robotics approach is a unique and powerful methodology to understand the role of sensor morphology and how it can evolve and adapt to its task and environment. Second, a consideration of an integrative view of perception by looking into multidisciplinary and overarching mechanisms of sensor morphology adaptation across biology and engineering enables us to extract relevant design principles that are important to extend our understanding of the unfinished concepts in sensing and perception. PMID:27499843

  4. CHOmine: an integrated data warehouse for CHO systems biology and modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerstl, Matthias P; Hanscho, Michael; Ruckerbauer, David E; Zanghellini, Jürgen; Borth, Nicole

    2017-01-01

    The last decade has seen a surge in published genome-scale information for Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells, which are the main production vehicles for therapeutic proteins. While a single access point is available at www.CHOgenome.org, the primary data is distributed over several databases at different institutions. Currently research is frequently hampered by a plethora of gene names and IDs that vary between published draft genomes and databases making systems biology analyses cumbersome and elaborate. Here we present CHOmine, an integrative data warehouse connecting data from various databases and links to other ones. Furthermore, we introduce CHOmodel, a web based resource that provides access to recently published CHO cell line specific metabolic reconstructions. Both resources allow to query CHO relevant data, find interconnections between different types of data and thus provides a simple, standardized entry point to the world of CHO systems biology. http://www.chogenome.org. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  5. Polymer micro-grippers with an integrated force sensor for biological manipulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mackay, R E; Le, H R; Clark, S; Williams, J A

    2013-01-01

    The development of a novel micro-system integrating SU-8 polymer micro-grippers with a tensile force sensor for handling and characterizing the mechanical properties of delicate biological materials, such as fibrils, is presented. The micro-grippers are actuated by the electro-thermal effect and have gripping forces comparable to the common ‘hot-and-cold-arm’ grippers. A robust finite element model was developed to investigate system performance and validated experimentally. A new micro-mechanical calibration method using a piezoelectric manipulator with a micro-force measurement system was successfully applied to test the structure. Both FEA simulation and micro-mechanical testing results indicated that the system could fulfil the requirements for micro-object manipulation within a biological environment. (paper)

  6. Using reefcheck monitoring database to develop the coral reef index of biological integrity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nguyen, Hai Yen T.; Pedersen, Ole; Ikejima, Kou

    2009-01-01

    The coral reef indices of biological integrity was constituted based on the reef check monitoring data. Seventy six minimally disturbed sites and 72 maximallv disturbed sites in shallow water and 39 minimally disturbed sites and 37 maximally disturbed sites in deep water were classified based...... on the high-end and low-end percentages and ratios of hard coral, dead coral and fieshy algae. A total of 52 candidate metrics was identified and compiled, Eight and four metrics were finally selected to constitute the shallow and deep water coral reef indices respectively. The rating curve was applied.......05) and coral damaged by other factors -0.283 (pcoral reef indices were sensitive responses to stressors and can be capable to use as the coral reef biological monitoring tool....

  7. Development of tools for integrated monitoring and assessment of hazardous substances and their biological effects in the Baltic Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehtonen, Kari K; Sundelin, Brita; Lang, Thomas; Strand, Jakob

    2014-02-01

    The need to develop biological effects monitoring to facilitate a reliable assessment of hazardous substances has been emphasized in the Baltic Sea Action Plan of the Helsinki Commission. An integrated chemical-biological approach is vitally important for the understanding and proper assessment of anthropogenic pressures and their effects on the Baltic Sea. Such an approach is also necessary for prudent management aiming at safeguarding the sustainable use of ecosystem goods and Services. The BEAST project (Biological Effects of Anthropogenic Chemical Stress: Tools for the Assessment of Ecosystem Health) set out to address this topic within the BONUS Programme. BEAST generated a large amount of quality-assured data on several biological effects parameters (biomarkers) in various marine species in different sub-regions of the Baltic Sea. New indicators (biological response measurement methods) and management tools (integrated indices) with regard to the integrated monitoring approach were suggested.

  8. Gauss-Kronrod-Trapezoidal Integration Scheme for Modeling Biological Tissues with Continuous Fiber Distributions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Chieh; Ateshian, Gerard A.

    2015-01-01

    Fibrous biological tissues may be modeled using a continuous fiber distribution (CFD) to capture tension-compression nonlinearity, anisotropic fiber distributions, and load-induced anisotropy. The CFD framework requires spherical integration of weighted individual fiber responses, with fibers contributing to the stress response only when they are in tension. The common method for performing this integration employs the discretization of the unit sphere into a polyhedron with nearly uniform triangular faces (finite element integration or FEI scheme). Although FEI has proven to be more accurate and efficient than integration using spherical coordinates, it presents three major drawbacks: First, the number of elements on the unit sphere needed to achieve satisfactory accuracy becomes a significant computational cost in a finite element analysis. Second, fibers may not be in tension in some regions on the unit sphere, where the integration becomes a waste. Third, if tensed fiber bundles span a small region compared to the area of the elements on the sphere, a significant discretization error arises. This study presents an integration scheme specialized to the CFD framework, which significantly mitigates the first drawback of the FEI scheme, while eliminating the second and third completely. Here, integration is performed only over the regions of the unit sphere where fibers are in tension. Gauss-Kronrod quadrature is used across latitudes and the trapezoidal scheme across longitudes. Over a wide range of strain states, fiber material properties, and fiber angular distributions, results demonstrate that this new scheme always outperforms FEI, sometimes by orders of magnitude in the number of computational steps and relative accuracy of the stress calculation. PMID:26291492

  9. A Gauss-Kronrod-Trapezoidal integration scheme for modeling biological tissues with continuous fiber distributions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Chieh; Ateshian, Gerard A

    2016-01-01

    Fibrous biological tissues may be modeled using a continuous fiber distribution (CFD) to capture tension-compression nonlinearity, anisotropic fiber distributions, and load-induced anisotropy. The CFD framework requires spherical integration of weighted individual fiber responses, with fibers contributing to the stress response only when they are in tension. The common method for performing this integration employs the discretization of the unit sphere into a polyhedron with nearly uniform triangular faces (finite element integration or FEI scheme). Although FEI has proven to be more accurate and efficient than integration using spherical coordinates, it presents three major drawbacks: First, the number of elements on the unit sphere needed to achieve satisfactory accuracy becomes a significant computational cost in a finite element (FE) analysis. Second, fibers may not be in tension in some regions on the unit sphere, where the integration becomes a waste. Third, if tensed fiber bundles span a small region compared to the area of the elements on the sphere, a significant discretization error arises. This study presents an integration scheme specialized to the CFD framework, which significantly mitigates the first drawback of the FEI scheme, while eliminating the second and third completely. Here, integration is performed only over the regions of the unit sphere where fibers are in tension. Gauss-Kronrod quadrature is used across latitudes and the trapezoidal scheme across longitudes. Over a wide range of strain states, fiber material properties, and fiber angular distributions, results demonstrate that this new scheme always outperforms FEI, sometimes by orders of magnitude in the number of computational steps and relative accuracy of the stress calculation.

  10. MAS Integration and Controllership Effectiveness: Evidence of a Preparer-User Perception Gap

    OpenAIRE

    Weißenberger, Barbara E.; Angelkort, Hendrik; Holthoff, Gero

    2012-01-01

    Recent evidence suggests that managers establish a positive link between management accounting system (MAS) integration and controllership effectiveness, which is fully mediated by the perceived consistency of financial language. Our paper extends this research by analyzing whether controllers have similar perceptions on MAS design. Testing a series of multi-group structural equation models, we find evidence for a preparer-user perception gap with respect to the mediating impact of a consiste...

  11. Engaging Nursing Students: Integrating Evidence-Based Inquiry, Informatics, and Clinical Practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keiffer, Melanie R

    2017-12-05

    The nursing research class requires faculty to create a spirit of inquiry while integrating technology, flexibility, and responsiveness to student needs. This article discusses new pedagogies to actively engage students in the evidence-based nursing process and the achievement of course learning outcomes. Through course exemplar, the author demonstrates a creative method to engage traditional baccalaureate nursing students in a nursing project that links evidence to improved patient outcomes.

  12. Clarification of the Use of Biological Data and Information in the 2002 Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report Guidance

    Science.gov (United States)

    The memorandum modifies the 2002 Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report Guidance to provide clarity and promote consistency in the manner in which states use biological data and information in developing their 2002 submissions.

  13. Quantifying biological integrity by taxonomic completeness: its utility in regional and global assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkins, Charles P

    2006-08-01

    Water resources managers and conservation biologists need reliable, quantitative, and directly comparable methods for assessing the biological integrity of the world's aquatic ecosystems. Large-scale assessments are constrained by the lack of consistency in the indicators used to assess biological integrity and our current inability to translate between indicators. In theory, assessments based on estimates of taxonomic completeness, i.e., the proportion of expected taxa that were observed (observed/expected, O/E) are directly comparable to one another and should therefore allow regionally and globally consistent summaries of the biological integrity of freshwater ecosystems. However, we know little about the true comparability of O/E assessments derived from different data sets or how well O/E assessments perform relative to other indicators in use. I compared the performance (precision, bias, and sensitivity to stressors) of O/E assessments based on five different data sets with the performance of the indicators previously applied to these data (three multimetric indices, a biotic index, and a hybrid method used by the state of Maine). Analyses were based on data collected from U.S. stream ecosystems in North Carolina, the Mid-Atlantic Highlands, Maine, and Ohio. O/E assessments resulted in very similar estimates of mean regional conditions compared with most other indicators once these indicators' values were standardized relative to reference-site means. However, other indicators tended to be biased estimators of O/E, a consequence of differences in their response to natural environmental gradients and sensitivity to stressors. These results imply that, in some cases, it may be possible to compare assessments derived from different indicators by standardizing their values (a statistical approach to data harmonization). In situations where it is difficult to standardize or otherwise harmonize two or more indicators, O/E values can easily be derived from existing

  14. GenFlow: generic flow for integration, management and analysis of molecular biology data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcio Katsumi Oikawa

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available A large number of DNA sequencing projects all over the world have yielded a fantastic amount of data, whose analysis is, currently, a big challenge for computational biology. The limiting step in this task is the integration of large volumes of data stored in highly heterogeneous repositories of genomic and cDNA sequences, as well as gene expression results. Solving this problem requires automated analytical tools to optimize operations and efficiently generate knowledge. This paper presents an information flow model , called GenFlow, that can tackle this analytical task.

  15. Data Integration for Health and Stress Monitoring: Biological Metabolites, Wearables Data, and Self-Reporting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Jocelyn T.

    Integrative and unobtrusive approaches to monitoring health and stress can assist in preventative medicine and disease management, and provide capabilities for complex work environments, such as military deployments and long-duration human space exploration missions. With many data streams that could potentially provide critical information about the health, behavior, and psychosocial states of individuals or small groups, the central question of this research is how to reliably measure health and stress states over time. This integrative approach to health and stress monitoring has implemented biological metabolite profiling, wearables data analysis, and survey assessment for comparing biological, behavioral, and psychological perspectives. Health monitoring technologies aim to provide objective data about health status. Providing objective information can help mitigate biases or blind spots in an individual's perception. Consider an individual who is unwilling to openly admit to psychosocial distress and unhealthy habits, or an individual who has habituated to long-term stressors and is unable to recognize a chronic state of high stress. Both honesty and self-awareness are required for accurate self-reporting. Digital health technologies, such as wearable devices, provide objective data for health monitoring. Compared to surveys, wearables are less influenced by participant openness, and compared to biological samples, wearables require less equipment and less labor for analysis. However, inherent to every data stream are limitations due to uncertainty and sensitivity. This research has been conducted in collaboration with Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation (HI-SEAS), which is a Mars analog research site on the slopes on Mauna Loa volcano in Hawaii. During 8-month and 12-month HI-SEAS missions in the 2014-2016 timeframe, twelve individuals provided hair and urine samples for metabolite profiling, utilized consumer-grade wearables to monitor sleep and

  16. Integrative activities content (aic: an auxiliary tool for the teaching of Biochemistry in the course of biological sciences at UFRN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. D. Silva

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available There are constant changes in the development of science, technology, politics, culture and society; the need for change is also evident in the training of teachers. The ease of access to information makes us realize that traditional teaching needs to be updated.The increasing demotivation of students,followed by high reprobation rates, has become a real challenge to the teaching practice.The objective of this work was to awaken in students enrolled in the discipline of MOLECULAR DIVERSITY (MD, a required curricular component in the Course of Biological Sciences at UFRN, an interest in studying the chemistry and functions of biomolecules, better relating the two to each other, and the content already studied in the course, in order to improve the teaching-learning process. This work was developed in a tutoring project registered at PROGRAD/UFRN. This discipline, MD, addresses chemical and structural features of the main organic molecules.The methodology focused on applying problem integrators called INTEGRATIVE ACTIVITIES OF CONTENT. This refers specifically to the application of problems that integrate the topics taught in the discipline, and also those administered in the disciplines processed in parallel, or even in previous semesters. In this way students realize that molecules relate and interact in all bodies; this gives rise to life through metabolism. The discipline is expected to promote meaningful and inter-related learning. We obtained the following results: greater participation and involvement of students in answering the questions posed; greater interest in the discipline;positive changes regarding the number of students who dropped the class, and in reprobation;and greater integration between teachers, students, and teaching assistants. The methodology used in this work was extremely important to achieve the proposed objectives, helping to facilitate the process of teaching-learning, as also to important relate content.

  17. Review: domestic animal forensic genetics - biological evidence, genetic markers, analytical approaches and challenges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanthaswamy, S

    2015-10-01

    This review highlights the importance of domestic animal genetic evidence sources, genetic testing, markers and analytical approaches as well as the challenges this field is facing in view of the de facto 'gold standard' human DNA identification. Because of the genetic similarity between humans and domestic animals, genetic analysis of domestic animal hair, saliva, urine, blood and other biological material has generated vital investigative leads that have been admitted into a variety of court proceedings, including criminal and civil litigation. Information on validated short tandem repeat, single nucleotide polymorphism and mitochondrial DNA markers and public access to genetic databases for forensic DNA analysis is becoming readily available. Although the fundamental aspects of animal forensic genetic testing may be reliable and acceptable, animal forensic testing still lacks the standardized testing protocols that human genetic profiling requires, probably because of the absence of monetary support from government agencies and the difficulty in promoting cooperation among competing laboratories. Moreover, there is a lack in consensus about how to best present the results and expert opinion to comply with court standards and bear judicial scrutiny. This has been the single most persistent challenge ever since the earliest use of domestic animal forensic genetic testing in a criminal case in the mid-1990s. Crime laboratory accreditation ensures that genetic test results have the courts' confidence. Because accreditation requires significant commitments of effort, time and resources, the vast majority of animal forensic genetic laboratories are not accredited nor are their analysts certified forensic examiners. The relevance of domestic animal forensic genetics in the criminal justice system is undeniable. However, further improvements are needed in a wide range of supporting resources, including standardized quality assurance and control protocols for sample

  18. Integrative Analyses of De Novo Mutations Provide Deeper Biological Insights into Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsushi Takata

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies have established important roles of de novo mutations (DNMs in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs. Here, we analyze DNMs in 262 ASD probands of Japanese origin and confirm the “de novo paradigm” of ASDs across ethnicities. Based on this consistency, we combine the lists of damaging DNMs in our and published ASD cohorts (total number of trios, 4,244 and perform integrative bioinformatics analyses. Besides replicating the findings of previous studies, our analyses highlight ATP-binding genes and fetal cerebellar/striatal circuits. Analysis of individual genes identified 61 genes enriched for damaging DNMs, including ten genes for which our dataset now contributes to statistical significance. Screening of compounds altering the expression of genes hit by damaging DNMs reveals a global downregulating effect of valproic acid, a known risk factor for ASDs, whereas cardiac glycosides upregulate these genes. Collectively, our integrative approach provides deeper biological and potential medical insights into ASDs.

  19. A Neural Systems-Based Neurobiology and Neuropsychiatry Course: Integrating Biology, Psychodynamics, and Psychology in the Psychiatric Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacy, Timothy; Hughes, John D.

    2006-01-01

    Objective: Psychotherapy and biological psychiatry remain divided in psychiatry residency curricula. Behavioral neurobiology and neuropsychiatry provide a systems-level framework that allows teachers to integrate biology, psychodynamics, and psychology. Method: The authors detail the underlying assumptions and outline of a neural systems-based…

  20. Strategic Integration of Multiple Bioinformatics Resources for System Level Analysis of Biological Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Souza, Mark; Sulakhe, Dinanath; Wang, Sheng; Xie, Bing; Hashemifar, Somaye; Taylor, Andrew; Dubchak, Inna; Conrad Gilliam, T; Maltsev, Natalia

    2017-01-01

    Recent technological advances in genomics allow the production of biological data at unprecedented tera- and petabyte scales. Efficient mining of these vast and complex datasets for the needs of biomedical research critically depends on a seamless integration of the clinical, genomic, and experimental information with prior knowledge about genotype-phenotype relationships. Such experimental data accumulated in publicly available databases should be accessible to a variety of algorithms and analytical pipelines that drive computational analysis and data mining.We present an integrated computational platform Lynx (Sulakhe et al., Nucleic Acids Res 44:D882-D887, 2016) ( http://lynx.cri.uchicago.edu ), a web-based database and knowledge extraction engine. It provides advanced search capabilities and a variety of algorithms for enrichment analysis and network-based gene prioritization. It gives public access to the Lynx integrated knowledge base (LynxKB) and its analytical tools via user-friendly web services and interfaces. The Lynx service-oriented architecture supports annotation and analysis of high-throughput experimental data. Lynx tools assist the user in extracting meaningful knowledge from LynxKB and experimental data, and in the generation of weighted hypotheses regarding the genes and molecular mechanisms contributing to human phenotypes or conditions of interest. The goal of this integrated platform is to support the end-to-end analytical needs of various translational projects.

  1. Hybrid integrated biological-solid-state system powered with adenosine triphosphate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roseman, Jared M; Lin, Jianxun; Ramakrishnan, Siddharth; Rosenstein, Jacob K; Shepard, Kenneth L

    2015-12-07

    There is enormous potential in combining the capabilities of the biological and the solid state to create hybrid engineered systems. While there have been recent efforts to harness power from naturally occurring potentials in living systems in plants and animals to power complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor integrated circuits, here we report the first successful effort to isolate the energetics of an electrogenic ion pump in an engineered in vitro environment to power such an artificial system. An integrated circuit is powered by adenosine triphosphate through the action of Na(+)/K(+) adenosine triphosphatases in an integrated in vitro lipid bilayer membrane. The ion pumps (active in the membrane at numbers exceeding 2 × 10(6) mm(-2)) are able to sustain a short-circuit current of 32.6 pA mm(-2) and an open-circuit voltage of 78 mV, providing for a maximum power transfer of 1.27 pW mm(-2) from a single bilayer. Two series-stacked bilayers provide a voltage sufficient to operate an integrated circuit with a conversion efficiency of chemical to electrical energy of 14.9%.

  2. Hybrid integrated biological-solid-state system powered with adenosine triphosphate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roseman, Jared M.; Lin, Jianxun; Ramakrishnan, Siddharth; Rosenstein, Jacob K.; Shepard, Kenneth L.

    2015-12-01

    There is enormous potential in combining the capabilities of the biological and the solid state to create hybrid engineered systems. While there have been recent efforts to harness power from naturally occurring potentials in living systems in plants and animals to power complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor integrated circuits, here we report the first successful effort to isolate the energetics of an electrogenic ion pump in an engineered in vitro environment to power such an artificial system. An integrated circuit is powered by adenosine triphosphate through the action of Na+/K+ adenosine triphosphatases in an integrated in vitro lipid bilayer membrane. The ion pumps (active in the membrane at numbers exceeding 2 × 106 mm-2) are able to sustain a short-circuit current of 32.6 pA mm-2 and an open-circuit voltage of 78 mV, providing for a maximum power transfer of 1.27 pW mm-2 from a single bilayer. Two series-stacked bilayers provide a voltage sufficient to operate an integrated circuit with a conversion efficiency of chemical to electrical energy of 14.9%.

  3. Processes that Drove the Transition from Chemistry to Biology: Concepts and Evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohorille, Andrew

    2012-01-01

    Two properties are particularly germane to the transition from chemistry to biology. One is the emergence of complex molecules (polymers) capable of performing non-trivial functions, such as catalysis, energy transduction or transport across cell walls. The other is the ability of several functions to work in concert to provide reproductive advantage to systems hosting these functions. Biological systems exhibit these properties at remarkable levels of efficiency and accuracy in a way that appears effortless. However, dissection of these properties reveals great complexities that are involved. This opens a question: how a simple, ancestral system could have acquired the required properties? Other questions follow. What are the chances that a functional polymer emerges at random? What is the minimum structural complexity of a polymer to carry out a function at a reasonable level of efficiency? Can we identify concrete, protobiologically plausible mechanisms that yield advantageous coupling between different functions? These and similar questions are at the core of the main topic of this session: how soulless chemistry became life? Clearly, we do not have complete answers to any of these questions. However, in recent years a number of new and sometimes unexpected clues have been brought to light. Of particular interest are proteins because they are the main functional polymers in contemporary cells. The emergence of protein functions is a puzzle. It is widely accepted that a well ]defined, compact structure (fold) is a prerequisite for function. It is equally widely accepted that compact folds are rare among random amino acid polymers. Then, how did protein functionality start? According to one hypothesis well folded were preceded by their poorly folded, yet still functional ancestors. Only recently, however, experimental evidence supporting this hypothesis has been presented. In particular, a small enzyme capable of ligating two RNA fragments with the rate of 106

  4. Toward the Integration of Meditation into Higher Education: A Review of Research Evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shapiro, Shauna L.; Brown, Kirk Warren; Astin, John A.

    2011-01-01

    Context: There is growing interest in the integration of meditation in higher education. Purpose: Here, we review evidence bearing on the utility of meditation to facilitate the achievement of traditional educational goals and to enhance education of the "whole person." Research Design: We examine how meditation practices may help foster important…

  5. “Turn-on” fluorescence probe integrated polymer nanoparticles for sensing biological thiol molecules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ang, Chung Yen; Tan, Si Yu; Lu, Yunpeng; Bai, Linyi; Li, Menghuan; Li, Peizhou; Zhang, Quan; Selvan, Subramanian Tamil; Zhao, Yanli

    2014-11-01

    A ``turn-on'' thiol-responsive fluorescence probe was synthesized and integrated into polymeric nanoparticles for sensing intracellular thiols. There is a photo-induced electron transfer process in the off state of the probe, and this process is terminated upon the reaction with thiol compounds. Configuration interaction singles (CIS) calculation was performed to confirm the mechanism of this process. A series of sensing studies were carried out, showing that the probe-integrated nanoparticles were highly selective towards biological thiol compounds over non-thiolated amino acids. Kinetic studies were also performed to investigate the relative reaction rate between the probe and the thiolated amino acids. Subsequently, the Gibbs free energy of the reactions was explored by means of the electrochemical method. Finally, the detection system was employed for sensing intracellular thiols in cancer cells, and the sensing selectivity could be further enhanced with the use of a cancer cell-targeting ligand in the nanoparticles. This development paves a path for the sensing and detection of biological thiols, serving as a potential diagnostic tool in the future.

  6. PathText: a text mining integrator for biological pathway visualizations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kemper, Brian; Matsuzaki, Takuya; Matsuoka, Yukiko; Tsuruoka, Yoshimasa; Kitano, Hiroaki; Ananiadou, Sophia; Tsujii, Jun'ichi

    2010-01-01

    Motivation: Metabolic and signaling pathways are an increasingly important part of organizing knowledge in systems biology. They serve to integrate collective interpretations of facts scattered throughout literature. Biologists construct a pathway by reading a large number of articles and interpreting them as a consistent network, but most of the models constructed currently lack direct links to those articles. Biologists who want to check the original articles have to spend substantial amounts of time to collect relevant articles and identify the sections relevant to the pathway. Furthermore, with the scientific literature expanding by several thousand papers per week, keeping a model relevant requires a continuous curation effort. In this article, we present a system designed to integrate a pathway visualizer, text mining systems and annotation tools into a seamless environment. This will enable biologists to freely move between parts of a pathway and relevant sections of articles, as well as identify relevant papers from large text bases. The system, PathText, is developed by Systems Biology Institute, Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology, National Centre for Text Mining (University of Manchester) and the University of Tokyo, and is being used by groups of biologists from these locations. Contact: brian@monrovian.com. PMID:20529930

  7. The Navigation Guide - evidence-based medicine meets environmental health: integration of animal and human evidence for PFOA effects on fetal growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lam, Juleen; Koustas, Erica; Sutton, Patrice; Johnson, Paula I; Atchley, Dylan S; Sen, Saunak; Robinson, Karen A; Axelrad, Daniel A; Woodruff, Tracey J

    2014-10-01

    The Navigation Guide is a novel systematic review method to synthesize scientific evidence and reach strength of evidence conclusions for environmental health decision making. Our aim was to integrate scientific findings from human and nonhuman studies to determine the overall strength of evidence for the question "Does developmental exposure to perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) affect fetal growth in humans?" We developed and applied prespecified criteria to systematically and transparently a) rate the quality of the scientific evidence as "high," "moderate," or "low"; b) rate the strength of the human and nonhuman evidence separately as "sufficient," "limited," "moderate," or "evidence of lack of toxicity"; and c) integrate the strength of the human and nonhuman evidence ratings into a strength of the evidence conclusion. We identified 18 epidemiology studies and 21 animal toxicology studies relevant to our study question. We rated both the human and nonhuman mammalian evidence as "moderate" quality and "sufficient" strength. Integration of these evidence ratings produced a final strength of evidence rating in which review authors concluded that PFOA is "known to be toxic" to human reproduction and development based on sufficient evidence of decreased fetal growth in both human and nonhuman mammalian species. We concluded that developmental exposure to PFOA adversely affects human health based on sufficient evidence of decreased fetal growth in both human and nonhuman mammalian species. The results of this case study demonstrate the application of a systematic and transparent methodology, via the Navigation Guide, for reaching strength of evidence conclusions in environmental health.

  8. Integrating evidence into practice: use of McKenzie-based treatment for mechanical low back pain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clarke S

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Angela Dunsford1, Saravana Kumar1,2, Sarah Clarke1 1International Centre for Allied Health Evidence, 2School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia Abstract: Low back pain (LBP is a major health issue with significant socioeconomic implications in most Western countries. Many forms of treatment have been proposed and investigated in the past, with exercise being a commonly prescribed intervention. Within allied health, in particular physiotherapy, there has been a growing movement that recognizes the role of the McKenzie method in treating LBP. Within the McKenzie framework, directional preference (DP exercises are one such intervention, with preliminary data demonstrating its effectiveness in the management of LBP. In this paper, we aim to integrate the evidence from current research, identified using a systematic review, and utilize a practical real-life case scenario to outline how evidence from the literature can be implemented in clinical practice. The findings from the systematic review indicate that DP exercises may have positive effects in the management of LBP. While the body of evidence to support this is limited (only four studies and therefore modest at best, it does provide some emerging evidence to support the use of DP exercises in clinical practice. Despite this, gaps also persist in the literature on DP exercises, and this relates to the exercise parameters and the compliance rates. Recognizing this dichotomy (modest evidence in some areas and evidence gaps in other areas, which is likely to confront health practitioners, using a practical approach with a real-life clinical scenario, we outline how the evidence from the systematic review can be implemented in clinical practice. This approach builds on the philosophy of evidence-based practice of integrating research evidence with clinical expertise and patient values. Keywords: low back pain, McKenzie method, directional

  9. Treatment of high strength distillery wastewater (cherry stillage) by integrated aerobic biological oxidation and ozonation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beltrán, F J; Alvarez, P M; Rodríguez, E M; García-Araya, J F; Rivas, J

    2001-01-01

    The performance of integrated aerobic digestion and ozonation for the treatment of high strength distillery wastewater (i.e., cherry stillage) is reported. Experiments were conducted in laboratory batch systems operating in draw and fill mode. For the biological step, activated sludge from a municipal wastewater treatment facility was used as inoculum, showing a high degree of activity to distillery wastewater. Thus, BOD and COD overall conversions of 95% and 82% were achieved, respectively. However, polyphenol content and absorbance at 254 nm (A(254)) could not be reduced more than 35% and 15%, respectively, by means of single biological oxidation. By considering COD as substrate, the aerobic digestion process followed a Contois' model kinetics, from which the maximum specific growth rate of microorganisms (mu(max)) and the inhibition factor, beta, were then evaluated at different conditions of temperature and pH. In the combined process, the effect of a post-ozonation stage was studied. The main goals achieved by the ozonation step were the removal of polyphenols and A(254). Therefore, ozonation was shown to be an appropriate technology to aid aerobic biological oxidation in the treatment of cherry stillage.

  10. Integration of cardiac proteome biology and medicine by a specialized knowledgebase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zong, Nobel C; Li, Haomin; Li, Hua; Lam, Maggie P Y; Jimenez, Rafael C; Kim, Christina S; Deng, Ning; Kim, Allen K; Choi, Jeong Ho; Zelaya, Ivette; Liem, David; Meyer, David; Odeberg, Jacob; Fang, Caiyun; Lu, Hao-Jie; Xu, Tao; Weiss, James; Duan, Huilong; Uhlen, Mathias; Yates, John R; Apweiler, Rolf; Ge, Junbo; Hermjakob, Henning; Ping, Peipei

    2013-10-12

    Omics sciences enable a systems-level perspective in characterizing cardiovascular biology. Integration of diverse proteomics data via a computational strategy will catalyze the assembly of contextualized knowledge, foster discoveries through multidisciplinary investigations, and minimize unnecessary redundancy in research efforts. The goal of this project is to develop a consolidated cardiac proteome knowledgebase with novel bioinformatics pipeline and Web portals, thereby serving as a new resource to advance cardiovascular biology and medicine. We created Cardiac Organellar Protein Atlas Knowledgebase (COPaKB; www.HeartProteome.org), a centralized platform of high-quality cardiac proteomic data, bioinformatics tools, and relevant cardiovascular phenotypes. Currently, COPaKB features 8 organellar modules, comprising 4203 LC-MS/MS experiments from human, mouse, drosophila, and Caenorhabditis elegans, as well as expression images of 10,924 proteins in human myocardium. In addition, the Java-coded bioinformatics tools provided by COPaKB enable cardiovascular investigators in all disciplines to retrieve and analyze pertinent organellar protein properties of interest. COPaKB provides an innovative and interactive resource that connects research interests with the new biological discoveries in protein sciences. With an array of intuitive tools in this unified Web server, nonproteomics investigators can conveniently collaborate with proteomics specialists to dissect the molecular signatures of cardiovascular phenotypes.

  11. Pollution control in pulp and paper industrial effluents using integrated chemical-biological treatment sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Bestawy, Ebtesam; El-Sokkary, Ibrahim; Hussein, Hany; Keela, Alaa Farouk Abu

    2008-11-01

    The main objective of the present study was to improve the quality of pulp and paper industrial wastewater of two local mills RAKTA and El-Ahlia, Alexandria, Egypt, and to bring their pollutant contents to safe discharge levels. Quality improvement was carried out using integrated chemical and biological treatment approaches after their optimization. Chemical treatment (alum, lime, and ferric chloride) was followed by oxidation using hydrogen peroxide and finally biological treatment using activated sludge (90 min for RAKTA and 60 min for El-Ahlia effluents). Chemical coagulation produced low-quality effluents, while pH adjustment during coagulation treatment did not enhance the quality of the effluents. Maximum removal of the tested pollutants was achieved using the integrated treatment and the pollutants recorded residual concentrations (RCs) of 34.67, 17.33, 0.13, and 0.43 mg/l and 15.0, 11.0, 0.0, and 0.13 mg/l for chemical oxygen demand (COD), biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5), tannin and lignin, and silica in RAKTA and El-Ahlia effluents, respectively, all of which were below their maximum permissible limits (MPLs) for the safe discharge into water courses. Specific oxygen uptake rate (SOUR) and sludge volume index (SVI) values reflect good conditions and healthy activated sludge. Based on the previous results, optimized conditions were applied as bench scale on the raw effluents of RAKTA and El-Ahlia via the batch chemical and the biological treatment sequences proposed. For RAKTA effluents, the sequence was as follows: (1) coagulation with 375 mg/l FeCl3, (2) oxidation with 50 mg/l hydrogen peroxide, and (3) biological treatment using activated sludge with 2,000 mg/l initial concentration and 90 min hydraulic retention time (HRT), while for El-Ahlia raw effluents, the sequence was (1) coagulation with 250 mg/l FeCl3, (2) oxidation with 45 mg/l hydrogen peroxide, and (3) biological treatment using activated sludge with 2,000 mg/l initial concentration and 60

  12. A semantic web framework to integrate cancer omics data with biological knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holford, Matthew E; McCusker, James P; Cheung, Kei-Hoi; Krauthammer, Michael

    2012-01-25

    The RDF triple provides a simple linguistic means of describing limitless types of information. Triples can be flexibly combined into a unified data source we call a semantic model. Semantic models open new possibilities for the integration of variegated biological data. We use Semantic Web technology to explicate high throughput clinical data in the context of fundamental biological knowledge. We have extended Corvus, a data warehouse which provides a uniform interface to various forms of Omics data, by providing a SPARQL endpoint. With the querying and reasoning tools made possible by the Semantic Web, we were able to explore quantitative semantic models retrieved from Corvus in the light of systematic biological knowledge. For this paper, we merged semantic models containing genomic, transcriptomic and epigenomic data from melanoma samples with two semantic models of functional data - one containing Gene Ontology (GO) data, the other, regulatory networks constructed from transcription factor binding information. These two semantic models were created in an ad hoc manner but support a common interface for integration with the quantitative semantic models. Such combined semantic models allow us to pose significant translational medicine questions. Here, we study the interplay between a cell's molecular state and its response to anti-cancer therapy by exploring the resistance of cancer cells to Decitabine, a demethylating agent. We were able to generate a testable hypothesis to explain how Decitabine fights cancer - namely, that it targets apoptosis-related gene promoters predominantly in Decitabine-sensitive cell lines, thus conveying its cytotoxic effect by activating the apoptosis pathway. Our research provides a framework whereby similar hypotheses can be developed easily.

  13. Meteorological Integration for the Biological Warning and Incident Characterization (BWIC) System: General Guidance for BWIC Cities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shaw, William J.; Wang, Weiguo; Rutz, Frederick C.; Chapman, Elaine G.; Rishel, Jeremy P.; Xie, YuLong; Seiple, Timothy E.; Allwine, K Jerry

    2007-02-16

    The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is responsible for developing systems to detect the release of aerosolized bioagents in urban environments. The system that accomplishes this, known as BioWatch, is a robust first-generation monitoring system. In conjunction with the BioWatch detection network, DHS has also developed a software tool for cities to use to assist in their response when a bioagent is detected. This tool, the Biological Warning and Incident Characterization (BWIC) System, will eventually be deployed to all BioWatch cities to aid in the interpretation of the public health significance of indicators from the BioWatch networks. BWIC consists of a set of integrated modules, including meteorological models, that estimate the effect of a biological agent on a city’s population once it has been detected. For the meteorological models in BWIC to successfully calculate the distribution of biological material, they must have as input accurate meteorological data, and wind fields in particular. The purpose of this document is to provide guidance for cities to use in identifying sources of good-quality local meteorological data that BWIC needs to function properly. This process of finding sources of local meteorological data, evaluating the data quality and gaps in coverage, and getting the data into BWIC, referred to as meteorological integration, is described. The good news for many cities is that meteorological measurement networks are becoming increasingly common. Most of these networks allow their data to be distributed in real time via the internet. Thus, cities will often only need to evaluate the quality of available measurements and perhaps add a modest number of stations where coverage is poor.

  14. Principles for integrating reactive species into in vivo biological processes: Examples from exercise physiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margaritelis, Nikos V; Cobley, James N; Paschalis, Vassilis; Veskoukis, Aristidis S; Theodorou, Anastasios A; Kyparos, Antonios; Nikolaidis, Michalis G

    2016-04-01

    The equivocal role of reactive species and redox signaling in exercise responses and adaptations is an example clearly showing the inadequacy of current redox biology research to shed light on fundamental biological processes in vivo. Part of the answer probably relies on the extreme complexity of the in vivo redox biology and the limitations of the currently applied methodological and experimental tools. We propose six fundamental principles that should be considered in future studies to mechanistically link reactive species production to exercise responses or adaptations: 1) identify and quantify the reactive species, 2) determine the potential signaling properties of the reactive species, 3) detect the sources of reactive species, 4) locate the domain modified and verify the (ir)reversibility of post-translational modifications, 5) establish causality between redox and physiological measurements, 6) use selective and targeted antioxidants. Fulfilling these principles requires an idealized human experimental setting, which is certainly a utopia. Thus, researchers should choose to satisfy those principles, which, based on scientific evidence, are most critical for their specific research question. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Scale relativity theory and integrative systems biology: 2. Macroscopic quantum-type mechanics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nottale, Laurent; Auffray, Charles

    2008-05-01

    In these two companion papers, we provide an overview and a brief history of the multiple roots, current developments and recent advances of integrative systems biology and identify multiscale integration as its grand challenge. Then we introduce the fundamental principles and the successive steps that have been followed in the construction of the scale relativity theory, which aims at describing the effects of a non-differentiable and fractal (i.e., explicitly scale dependent) geometry of space-time. The first paper of this series was devoted, in this new framework, to the construction from first principles of scale laws of increasing complexity, and to the discussion of some tentative applications of these laws to biological systems. In this second review and perspective paper, we describe the effects induced by the internal fractal structures of trajectories on motion in standard space. Their main consequence is the transformation of classical dynamics into a generalized, quantum-like self-organized dynamics. A Schrödinger-type equation is derived as an integral of the geodesic equation in a fractal space. We then indicate how gauge fields can be constructed from a geometric re-interpretation of gauge transformations as scale transformations in fractal space-time. Finally, we introduce a new tentative development of the theory, in which quantum laws would hold also in scale space, introducing complexergy as a measure of organizational complexity. Initial possible applications of this extended framework to the processes of morphogenesis and the emergence of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cellular structures are discussed. Having founded elements of the evolutionary, developmental, biochemical and cellular theories on the first principles of scale relativity theory, we introduce proposals for the construction of an integrative theory of life and for the design and implementation of novel macroscopic quantum-type experiments and devices, and discuss their potential

  16. Integrating evidence-based practice into RN-to-BSN clinical nursing education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Eui Geum; Kim, Sunah; Kim, So Sun; Kim, Sue; Cho, Eun Yong; Yoo, Ji-Soo; Kim, Hee Soon; Lee, Ju Hee; You, Mi Ae; Lee, Hyejung

    2010-07-01

    This study examines the effects of integrating evidence-based practice (EBP) into clinical practicum on EBP efficacy and barriers to research utilization among Korean RN-to-BSN students. A one-group pretest-posttest design was used. Eighty-one students were recruited from a school of nursing in Korea. Evidence-based practice clinical practicum was composed of two consecutive programs during one semester. Lectures, individual mentoring on EBP practicum, small group, and wrap-up conferences were provided. Outcomes of EBP efficacy and barriers to research utilization were analyzed using paired t tests for 74 final participants. Evidence-based practice efficacy scores increased significantly (p effectiveness of EBP education among RN-to-BSN students. These results may help health educators develop effective educational strategies to integrate EBP concepts into a clinical practicum. Copyright 2010, SLACK Incorporated.

  17. Quality controls in integrative approaches to detect errors and inconsistencies in biological databases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ghisalberti Giorgio

    2010-12-01

    different biological databases and integrated in the GFINDer data warehouse. By doing so, we identified in these data a variety of different types of errors and inconsistencies; this enables us to ensure good quality of the data in the GFINDer data warehouse. We reported all identified data errors and inconsistencies to the curators of the original databases from where the data were retrieved, who mainly corrected them in subsequent updating of the original database. This contributed to improve the quality of the data available, in the original databases, to the whole scientific community.

  18. Integration of Plant Defense Traits with Biological Control of Arthropod Pests: Challenges and Opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Julie A; Ode, Paul J; Oliveira-Hofman, Camila; Harwood, James D

    2016-01-01

    Crop plants exhibit a wide diversity of defensive traits and strategies to protect themselves from damage by herbivorous pests and disease. These defensive traits may be naturally occurring or artificially selected through crop breeding, including introduction via genetic engineering. While these traits can have obvious and direct impacts on herbivorous pests, many have profound effects on higher trophic levels, including the natural enemies of herbivores. Multi-trophic effects of host plant resistance have the potential to influence, both positively and negatively, biological control. Plant defense traits can influence both the numerical and functional responses of natural enemies; these interactions can be semiochemically, plant toxin-, plant nutrient-, and/or physically mediated. Case studies involving predators, parasitoids, and pathogens of crop pests will be presented and discussed. These diverse groups of natural enemies may respond differently to crop plant traits based on their own unique biology and the ecological niches they fill. Genetically modified crop plants that have been engineered to express transgenic products affecting herbivorous pests are an additional consideration. For the most part, transgenic plant incorporated protectant (PIP) traits are compatible with biological control due to their selective toxicity to targeted pests and relatively low non-target impacts, although transgenic crops may have indirect effects on higher trophic levels and arthropod communities mediated by lower host or prey number and/or quality. Host plant resistance and biological control are two of the key pillars of integrated pest management; their potential interactions, whether they are synergistic, complementary, or disruptive, are key in understanding and achieving sustainable and effective pest management.

  19. Integration of plant defense traits with biological control of arthropod pests: challenges and opportunities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie A Peterson

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Crop plants exhibit a wide diversity of defensive traits and strategies to protect themselves from damage by herbivorous pests and disease. These defensive traits may be naturally occurring or artificially selected through crop breeding, including introduction via genetic engineering. While these traits can have obvious and direct impacts on herbivorous pests, many have profound effects on higher trophic levels, including the natural enemies of herbivores. Multi-trophic effects of host plant resistance have the potential to influence, both positively and negatively, biological control. Plant defense traits can influence both the numerical and functional responses of natural enemies; these interactions can be semiochemically-, plant toxin-, plant nutrient-, and/or physically-mediated. Case studies involving predators, parasitoids, and pathogens of crop pests will be presented and discussed. These diverse groups of natural enemies may respond differently to crop plant traits based on their own unique biology and the ecological niches they fill. Genetically modified crop plants that have been engineered to express transgenic products affecting herbivorous pests are an additional consideration. For the most part, transgenic plant incorporated protectant (PIP traits are compatible with biological control due to their selective toxicity to targeted pests and relatively low non-target impacts, although transgenic crops may have indirect effects on higher trophic levels and arthropod communities mediated by lower host or prey number and/or quality. Host plant resistance and biological control are two of the key pillars of integrated pest management; their potential interactions, whether they are synergistic, complementary, or disruptive, are key in understanding and achieving sustainable and effective pest management.

  20. Integration of evidence-based practice in bedside teaching paediatrics supported by e-learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potomkova, Jarmila; Mihal, Vladimir; Zapletalova, Jirina; Subova, Dana

    2010-03-01

    Bedside teaching with evidence-based practice elements, supported by e-learning activities, can play an important role in modern medical education. Teachers have to incorporate evidence from the medical literature to increase student motivation and interactivity. An integral part of the medical curricula at Palacky University Olomouc (Czech Republic) are real paediatric scenarios supplemented with a review of current literature to enhance evidence-based bedside teaching & learning. Searching for evidence is taught through librarian-guided interactive hands-on sessions and/or web-based tutorials followed by clinical case presentations and feedback. Innovated EBM paediatric clerkship demonstrated students' preferences towards web-based interactive bedside teaching & learning. In two academic years (2007/2008, 2008/2009), learning-focused feedback from 106 and 131 students, resp. was obtained about their attitudes towards evidence-based bedside teaching. The assessment included among others the overall level of instruction, quality of practical evidence-based training, teacher willingness and impact of instruction on increased interest in the specialty. There was some criticism about excessive workload. A parallel survey was carried out on the perceived values of different forms of information skills training (i.e. demonstration, online tutorials, and librarian-guided interactive search sessions) and post-training self-reported level of search skills. The new teaching/learning paediatric portfolio is a challenge for further activities, including effective knowledge translation, continuing medical & professional development of teachers, and didactic, clinically integrated teaching approaches.

  1. Ontology-supported research on vaccine efficacy, safety and integrative biological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Yongqun

    2014-07-01

    While vaccine efficacy and safety research has dramatically progressed with the methods of in silico prediction and data mining, many challenges still exist. A formal ontology is a human- and computer-interpretable set of terms and relations that represent entities in a specific domain and how these terms relate to each other. Several community-based ontologies (including Vaccine Ontology, Ontology of Adverse Events and Ontology of Vaccine Adverse Events) have been developed to support vaccine and adverse event representation, classification, data integration, literature mining of host-vaccine interaction networks, and analysis of vaccine adverse events. The author further proposes minimal vaccine information standards and their ontology representations, ontology-based linked open vaccine data and meta-analysis, an integrative One Network ('OneNet') Theory of Life, and ontology-based approaches to study and apply the OneNet theory. In the Big Data era, these proposed strategies provide a novel framework for advanced data integration and analysis of fundamental biological networks including vaccine immune mechanisms.

  2. The use of aquatic macrophytes in monitoring and in assessment of biological integrity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stewart, P.M.; Scribailo, R.W.; Simon, T.P.; Gerhardt, A.

    1999-01-01

    Aquatic plant species, populations, and communities should be used as indicators of the aquatic environment, allowing detection of ecosystem response to different stressors. Plant tissues bioaccumulate and concentrate toxin levels higher than what is present in the sediments; and this appears to be related to organic matter content, acidification, and buffering capacity. The majority of toxicity studies, most of these with heavy metals, have been done with several Lemna species and Vallisneria americana. Organic chemicals reviewed include pesticides and herbicides, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, polychlorinated biphenyls, and other industrial contaminants. The use of aquatic plant communities as bioindicators of environmental quality was evaluated for specific characteristics and indices that may assess biological integrity. Indices such as the floristic quality index (FQI) and coefficient of conservatism (C) are pioneering efforts to describe the quality of natural areas and protect native biodiversity. Our case study in the Grand Calumet Lagoons found that 'least-impacted' sites had the greatest aquatic plant species richness, highest FQI and C values, and highest relative abundance. Lastly, we introduce the concepts necessary for the development of a plant index of biotic integrity. Development of reference conditions is essential to understanding aquatic plant community structure, function, individual health, condition, and abundance. Information on guild development and tolerance definition are also integral to the development of a multi-metric index.

  3. Evidence for micronutrient limitation of biological soil crusts: Importance to arid-lands restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowker, M.A.; Belnap, J.; Davidson, D.W.; Phillips, S.L.

    2005-01-01

    Desertification is a global problem, costly to national economies and human societies. Restoration of biological soil crusts (BSCs) may have an important role to play in the reversal of desertification due to their ability to decrease erosion and enhance soil fertility. To determine if there is evidence that lower fertility may hinder BSC recolonization, we investigated the hypothesis that BSC abundance is driven by soil nutrient concentrations. At a regional scale (north and central Colorado Plateau, USA), moss and lichen cover and richness are correlated with a complex water-nutrient availability gradient and have approximately six-fold higher cover and approximately two-fold higher species richness on sandy soils than on shale-derived soils. At a microscale, mosses and lichens are overrepresented in microhabitats under the north sides of shrub canopies, where water and nutrients are more available. At two spatial scales, and at the individual species and community levels, our data are consistent with the hypothesis that distributions of BSC organisms are determined largely by soil fertility. The micronutrients Mn and Zn figured prominently and consistently in the various analyses, strongly suggesting that these elements are previously unstudied limiting factors in BSC development. Structural-equation modeling of our data is most consistent with the hypothesis of causal relationships between the availability of micronutrients and the abundance of the two major nitrogen (N) fixers of BSCs. Specifically, higher Mn availability may determine greater Collema tenax abundance, and both Mn and Zn may limit Collema coccophorum; alternative causal hypotheses were less consistent with the data. We propose experimental trials of micronutrient addition to promote the restoration of BSC function on disturbed lands. Arid lands, where BSCs are most prevalent, cover ???40% of the terrestrial surface of the earth; thus the information gathered in this study is potentially useful

  4. Vertical Integration of Hospitals and Physicians: Economic Theory and Empirical Evidence on Spending and Quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Post, Brady; Buchmueller, Tom; Ryan, Andrew M

    2017-08-01

    Hospital-physician vertical integration is on the rise. While increased efficiencies may be possible, emerging research raises concerns about anticompetitive behavior, spending increases, and uncertain effects on quality. In this review, we bring together several of the key theories of vertical integration that exist in the neoclassical and institutional economics literatures and apply these theories to the hospital-physician relationship. We also conduct a literature review of the effects of vertical integration on prices, spending, and quality in the growing body of evidence ( n = 15) to evaluate which of these frameworks have the strongest empirical support. We find some support for vertical foreclosure as a framework for explaining the observed results. We suggest a conceptual model and identify directions for future research. Based on our analysis, we conclude that vertical integration poses a threat to the affordability of health services and merits special attention from policymakers and antitrust authorities.

  5. Using Integrative Medicine in Pain Management: An Evaluation of Current Evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Yuan-Chi; Wan, Limeng; Jamison, Robert N

    2017-12-01

    Complementary medicine therapies are frequently used to treat pain conditions such as headaches and neck, back, and joint pain. Chronic pain, described as pain lasting longer than 3-6 months, can be a debilitating condition that has a significant socioeconomic impact. Pharmacologic approaches are often used for alleviating chronic pain, but recently there has been a reluctance to prescribe opioids for chronic noncancer pain because of concerns about tolerance, dependence, and addiction. As a result, there has been increased interest in integrative medicine strategies to help manage pain and to reduce reliance on prescription opioids to manage pain. This article offers a brief critical review of integrative medical therapies used to treat chronic pain, including nutritional supplements, yoga, relaxation, tai chi, massage, spinal manipulation, and acupuncture. The goal of this article is to identify those treatments that show evidence of efficacy and to identify gaps in the literature where additional studies and controlled trials are needed. An electronic search of the databases of PubMed, The Cochrane Library, EMBASE, PsycINFO, and Science Citation Index Expanded was conducted. Overall, weak positive evidence was found for yoga, relaxation, tai chi, massage, and manipulation. Strong evidence for acupuncture as a complementary treatment for chronic pain that has been shown to decrease the usage of opioids was found. Few studies were found in which integrative medicine approaches were used to address opioid misuse and abuse among chronic pain patients. Additional controlled trials to address the use of integrative medicine approaches in pain management are needed.

  6. Should different impact assessment instruments be integrated? Evidence from English spatial planning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tajima, Ryo; Fischer, Thomas B.

    2013-01-01

    This paper aims at providing empirical evidence to the question as to whether integration of different instruments is achieving its aim in supporting sustainable decision making, focusing on SEA inclusive sustainability appraisal (SA) and other impact assessments (IAs) currently used in English spatial planning. Usage of IAs in addition to SA is established and an analysis of the integration approach (in terms of process, output, and assessor) as well as its effectiveness is conducted. It is found that while integration enhances effectiveness to some extent, too much integration, especially in terms of the procedural element, appears to diminish the overall effectiveness of each IA in influencing decisions as they become captured by the balancing function of SA. -- Highlights: ► The usage of different impact assessments in English spatial planning is clarified. ► The relationship between integration approach and effectiveness is analyzed. ► Results suggest that integration does not necessarily lead to more sustainable decisions. ► Careful consideration is recommended upon process integration

  7. Should different impact assessment instruments be integrated? Evidence from English spatial planning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tajima, Ryo, E-mail: tajima.ryo@nies.go.jp [Interdisciplinary Graduate School of Science and Engineering, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 4259-G5-9 Nagatsuta-cho, Midori-ku, Yokoyama City, Kanagawa, 226-8502 (Japan); Fischer, Thomas B., E-mail: fischer@liverpool.ac.uk [Department of Geography and Planning, School of Environmental Sciences, University of Liverpool, 74 Bedford Street South, Liverpool L69 7ZQ (United Kingdom)

    2013-07-15

    This paper aims at providing empirical evidence to the question as to whether integration of different instruments is achieving its aim in supporting sustainable decision making, focusing on SEA inclusive sustainability appraisal (SA) and other impact assessments (IAs) currently used in English spatial planning. Usage of IAs in addition to SA is established and an analysis of the integration approach (in terms of process, output, and assessor) as well as its effectiveness is conducted. It is found that while integration enhances effectiveness to some extent, too much integration, especially in terms of the procedural element, appears to diminish the overall effectiveness of each IA in influencing decisions as they become captured by the balancing function of SA. -- Highlights: ► The usage of different impact assessments in English spatial planning is clarified. ► The relationship between integration approach and effectiveness is analyzed. ► Results suggest that integration does not necessarily lead to more sustainable decisions. ► Careful consideration is recommended upon process integration.

  8. The effects of integrated care: a systematic review of UK and international evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baxter, Susan; Johnson, Maxine; Chambers, Duncan; Sutton, Anthea; Goyder, Elizabeth; Booth, Andrew

    2018-05-10

    Healthcare systems around the world have been responding to the demand for better integrated models of service delivery. However, there is a need for further clarity regarding the effects of these new models of integration, and exploration regarding whether models introduced in other care systems may achieve similar outcomes in a UK national health service context. The study aimed to carry out a systematic review of the effects of integration or co-ordination between healthcare services, or between health and social care on service delivery outcomes including effectiveness, efficiency and quality of care. Electronic databases including MEDLINE; Embase; PsycINFO; CINAHL; Science and Social Science Citation Indices; and the Cochrane Library were searched for relevant literature published between 2006 to March 2017. Online sources were searched for UK grey literature, and citation searching, and manual reference list screening were also carried out. Quantitative primary studies and systematic reviews, reporting actual or perceived effects on service delivery following the introduction of models of integration or co-ordination, in healthcare or health and social care settings in developed countries were eligible for inclusion. Strength of evidence for each outcome reported was analysed and synthesised using a four point comparative rating system of stronger, weaker, inconsistent or limited evidence. One hundred sixty seven studies were eligible for inclusion. Analysis indicated evidence of perceived improved quality of care, evidence of increased patient satisfaction, and evidence of improved access to care. Evidence was rated as either inconsistent or limited regarding all other outcomes reported, including system-wide impacts on primary care, secondary care, and health care costs. There were limited differences between outcomes reported by UK and international studies, and overall the literature had a limited consideration of effects on service users. Models of

  9. Synthetic Biology Platform for Sensing and Integrating Endogenous Transcriptional Inputs in Mammalian Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelici, Bartolomeo; Mailand, Erik; Haefliger, Benjamin; Benenson, Yaakov

    2016-08-30

    One of the goals of synthetic biology is to develop programmable artificial gene networks that can transduce multiple endogenous molecular cues to precisely control cell behavior. Realizing this vision requires interfacing natural molecular inputs with synthetic components that generate functional molecular outputs. Interfacing synthetic circuits with endogenous mammalian transcription factors has been particularly difficult. Here, we describe a systematic approach that enables integration and transduction of multiple mammalian transcription factor inputs by a synthetic network. The approach is facilitated by a proportional amplifier sensor based on synergistic positive autoregulation. The circuits efficiently transduce endogenous transcription factor levels into RNAi, transcriptional transactivation, and site-specific recombination. They also enable AND logic between pairs of arbitrary transcription factors. The results establish a framework for developing synthetic gene networks that interface with cellular processes through transcriptional regulators. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Expression of recombinant glycoproteins in mammalian cells: towards an integrative approach to structural biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aricescu, A Radu; Owens, Raymond J

    2013-06-01

    Mammalian cells are rapidly becoming the system of choice for the production of recombinant glycoproteins for structural biology applications. Their use has enabled the structural investigation of a whole new set of targets including large, multi-domain and highly glycosylated eukaryotic cell surface receptors and their supra-molecular assemblies. We summarize the technical advances that have been made in mammalian expression technology and highlight some of the structural insights that have been obtained using these methods. Looking forward, it is clear that mammalian cell expression will provide exciting and unique opportunities for an integrative approach to the structural study of proteins, especially of human origin and medically relevant, by bridging the gap between the purified state and the cellular context. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. CoreFlow: A computational platform for integration, analysis and modeling of complex biological data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pasculescu, Adrian; Schoof, Erwin; Creixell, Pau

    2014-01-01

    between data generation, analysis and manuscript writing. CoreFlow is being released to the scientific community as an open-sourced software package complete with proteomics-specific examples, which include corrections for incomplete isotopic labeling of peptides (SILAC) or arginine-to-proline conversion......A major challenge in mass spectrometry and other large-scale applications is how to handle, integrate, and model the data that is produced. Given the speed at which technology advances and the need to keep pace with biological experiments, we designed a computational platform, CoreFlow, which...... provides programmers with a framework to manage data in real-time. It allows users to upload data into a relational database (MySQL), and to create custom scripts in high-level languages such as R, Python, or Perl for processing, correcting and modeling this data. CoreFlow organizes these scripts...

  12. Neurological and biological foundations of children's social and emotional development: an integrated literature review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Helen Jean; Kendall, Garth Edward; Shields, Linda

    2014-08-01

    This article provides an integrated review of the expert literature on developmental processes that combine social, biological, and neurological pathways, and the mechanisms through which these pathways may influence school success and health. It begins with a historical overview of the current understanding of how attachment relationships and social environments influence brain development and plasticity and are, therefore, central to the physical and mental health of individuals and populations. It then expands on the effect of plasticity in relation to behavior and learning at school. This article concludes with a discussion of the role the school nurse may play in supporting health and learning by recognizing signs of relational stress and by advocating for prevention strategies. © The Author(s) 2013.

  13. Integrating population genetics and conservation biology in the era of genomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ouborg, N Joop

    2010-02-23

    As one of the final activities of the ESF-CONGEN Networking programme, a conference entitled 'Integrating Population Genetics and Conservation Biology' was held at Trondheim, Norway, from 23 to 26 May 2009. Conference speakers and poster presenters gave a display of the state-of-the-art developments in the field of conservation genetics. Over the five-year running period of the successful ESF-CONGEN Networking programme, much progress has been made in theoretical approaches, basic research on inbreeding depression and other genetic processes associated with habitat fragmentation and conservation issues, and with applying principles of conservation genetics in the conservation of many species. Future perspectives were also discussed in the conference, and it was concluded that conservation genetics is evolving into conservation genomics, while at the same time basic and applied research on threatened species and populations from a population genetic point of view continues to be emphasized.

  14. Integrated structural biology and molecular ecology of N-cycling enzymes from ammonia-oxidizing archaea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tolar, Bradley B; Herrmann, Jonathan; Bargar, John R; van den Bedem, Henry; Wakatsuki, Soichi; Francis, Christopher A

    2017-10-01

    Knowledge of the molecular ecology and environmental determinants of ammonia-oxidizing organisms is critical to understanding and predicting the global nitrogen (N) and carbon cycles, but an incomplete biochemical picture hinders in vitro studies of N-cycling enzymes. Although an integrative structural and dynamic characterization at the atomic scale would advance our understanding of function tremendously, structural knowledge of key N-cycling enzymes from ecologically relevant ammonia oxidizers is unfortunately extremely limited. Here, we discuss the challenges and opportunities for examining the ecology of ammonia-oxidizing organisms, particularly uncultivated Thaumarchaeota, through (meta)genome-driven structural biology of the enzymes ammonia monooxygenase (AMO) and nitrite reductase (NirK). © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Consumer preferences and values as an integral key to evidence-based practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melnyk, Bernadette Mazurek; Fineout-Overholt, Ellen

    2006-01-01

    Although evidence-based practice (EBP) integrates the best evidence from well-designed studies with a clinician's expertise and patient preferences and values, most of what is emphasized in books and reports on EBP is the 5-step EBP process. However, the consideration of patient values and preferences in making clinical decisions is essential to deliver the highest quality of care. This article briefly reviews the status of EBP in the United States, described the ARCC mentorship model, and highlights how to engage consumers in the EBP process.

  16. Sparse canonical methods for biological data integration: application to a cross-platform study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert-Granié Christèle

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In the context of systems biology, few sparse approaches have been proposed so far to integrate several data sets. It is however an important and fundamental issue that will be widely encountered in post genomic studies, when simultaneously analyzing transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics data using different platforms, so as to understand the mutual interactions between the different data sets. In this high dimensional setting, variable selection is crucial to give interpretable results. We focus on a sparse Partial Least Squares approach (sPLS to handle two-block data sets, where the relationship between the two types of variables is known to be symmetric. Sparse PLS has been developed either for a regression or a canonical correlation framework and includes a built-in procedure to select variables while integrating data. To illustrate the canonical mode approach, we analyzed the NCI60 data sets, where two different platforms (cDNA and Affymetrix chips were used to study the transcriptome of sixty cancer cell lines. Results We compare the results obtained with two other sparse or related canonical correlation approaches: CCA with Elastic Net penalization (CCA-EN and Co-Inertia Analysis (CIA. The latter does not include a built-in procedure for variable selection and requires a two-step analysis. We stress the lack of statistical criteria to evaluate canonical correlation methods, which makes biological interpretation absolutely necessary to compare the different gene selections. We also propose comprehensive graphical representations of both samples and variables to facilitate the interpretation of the results. Conclusion sPLS and CCA-EN selected highly relevant genes and complementary findings from the two data sets, which enabled a detailed understanding of the molecular characteristics of several groups of cell lines. These two approaches were found to bring similar results, although they highlighted the same

  17. Wiring Together Synthetic Bacterial Consortia to Create a Biological Integrated Circuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perry, Nicolas; Nelson, Edward M; Timp, Gregory

    2016-12-16

    The promise of adapting biology to information processing will not be realized until engineered gene circuits, operating in different cell populations, can be wired together to express a predictable function. Here, elementary biological integrated circuits (BICs), consisting of two sets of transmitter and receiver gene circuit modules with embedded memory placed in separate cell populations, were meticulously assembled using live cell lithography and wired together by the mass transport of quorum-sensing (QS) signal molecules to form two isolated communication links (comlinks). The comlink dynamics were tested by broadcasting "clock" pulses of inducers into the networks and measuring the responses of functionally linked fluorescent reporters, and then modeled through simulations that realistically captured the protein production and molecular transport. These results show that the comlinks were isolated and each mimicked aspects of the synchronous, sequential networks used in digital computing. The observations about the flow conditions, derived from numerical simulations, and the biofilm architectures that foster or silence cell-to-cell communications have implications for everything from decontamination of drinking water to bacterial virulence.

  18. Massively Parallel, Molecular Analysis Platform Developed Using a CMOS Integrated Circuit With Biological Nanopores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roever, Stefan

    2012-01-01

    A massively parallel, low cost molecular analysis platform will dramatically change the nature of protein, molecular and genomics research, DNA sequencing, and ultimately, molecular diagnostics. An integrated circuit (IC) with 264 sensors was fabricated using standard CMOS semiconductor processing technology. Each of these sensors is individually controlled with precision analog circuitry and is capable of single molecule measurements. Under electronic and software control, the IC was used to demonstrate the feasibility of creating and detecting lipid bilayers and biological nanopores using wild type α-hemolysin. The ability to dynamically create bilayers over each of the sensors will greatly accelerate pore development and pore mutation analysis. In addition, the noise performance of the IC was measured to be 30fA(rms). With this noise performance, single base detection of DNA was demonstrated using α-hemolysin. The data shows that a single molecule, electrical detection platform using biological nanopores can be operationalized and can ultimately scale to millions of sensors. Such a massively parallel platform will revolutionize molecular analysis and will completely change the field of molecular diagnostics in the future.

  19. Biological and photocatalytic treatment integrated with separation and reuse of titanium dioxide on the removal of chlorophenols in tap water

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suryaman, Dhanus; Hasegawa, Kiyoshi

    2010-01-01

    We investigated biological, photocatalytic, and combination of biological and photocatalytic treatments in order to remove a mixture of 2-chlorophenol, 2,4-dichlorophenol, 2,4,5-trichlorophenol, and pentachlorophenol in tap water (total: 100 mg L -1 , each: 25 mg L -1 ). The removal of chlorinated phenols was conducted with a flow biological treatment and a circulative flow photocatalytic treatment under black light and sunlight irradiations integrated with titanium dioxide separation and reuse. The combined biological-photocatalytic treatment significantly shortened the degradation and mineralization time of both the biological treatment and the photocatalytic treatment. The removed chlorophenols per hour by the combined biological-photocatalytic treatment was 25.8 mg h -1 , whereas by the combined photocatalytic-biological treatment was 10.5 mg h -1 . After a large portion of biodegradable 2-chlorophenol and 2,4-dichlorophenol, and around half amount of slightly biodegradable 2,4,5-trichlorophenol were removed by the biological treatment, the remained three chlorophenols, biorecalcitrant pentachlorophenol, and biodegradation products were completely removed by the subsequent photocatalytic treatment. Since titanium dioxide particles in tap water spontaneously sedimented on standing after the photocatalytic treatment, the combined treatment can be operated by integrating with the titanium dioxide separation and reuse. The TiO 2 particles were recovered and reused at least three times without significantly decreasing the removal efficiency.

  20. Biological and photocatalytic treatment integrated with separation and reuse of titanium dioxide on the removal of chlorophenols in tap water

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Suryaman, Dhanus, E-mail: dhanussuryaman@yahoo.com [Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology, M.H. Thamrin No. 8, Jakarta 10340 (Indonesia); Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Toyama, 3190 Gofuku, Toyama 930-8555 (Japan); Hasegawa, Kiyoshi [Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Toyama, 3190 Gofuku, Toyama 930-8555 (Japan)

    2010-11-15

    We investigated biological, photocatalytic, and combination of biological and photocatalytic treatments in order to remove a mixture of 2-chlorophenol, 2,4-dichlorophenol, 2,4,5-trichlorophenol, and pentachlorophenol in tap water (total: 100 mg L{sup -1}, each: 25 mg L{sup -1}). The removal of chlorinated phenols was conducted with a flow biological treatment and a circulative flow photocatalytic treatment under black light and sunlight irradiations integrated with titanium dioxide separation and reuse. The combined biological-photocatalytic treatment significantly shortened the degradation and mineralization time of both the biological treatment and the photocatalytic treatment. The removed chlorophenols per hour by the combined biological-photocatalytic treatment was 25.8 mg h{sup -1}, whereas by the combined photocatalytic-biological treatment was 10.5 mg h{sup -1}. After a large portion of biodegradable 2-chlorophenol and 2,4-dichlorophenol, and around half amount of slightly biodegradable 2,4,5-trichlorophenol were removed by the biological treatment, the remained three chlorophenols, biorecalcitrant pentachlorophenol, and biodegradation products were completely removed by the subsequent photocatalytic treatment. Since titanium dioxide particles in tap water spontaneously sedimented on standing after the photocatalytic treatment, the combined treatment can be operated by integrating with the titanium dioxide separation and reuse. The TiO{sub 2} particles were recovered and reused at least three times without significantly decreasing the removal efficiency.

  1. Development of a Prototype System for Archiving Integrative/Hybrid Structure Models of Biological Macromolecules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vallat, Brinda; Webb, Benjamin; Westbrook, John D; Sali, Andrej; Berman, Helen M

    2018-04-09

    Essential processes in biology are carried out by large macromolecular assemblies, whose structures are often difficult to determine by traditional methods. Increasingly, researchers combine measured data and computed information from several complementary methods to obtain "hybrid" or "integrative" structural models of macromolecules and their assemblies. These integrative/hybrid (I/H) models are not archived in the PDB because of the absence of standard data representations and processing mechanisms. Here we present the development of data standards and a prototype system for archiving I/H models. The data standards provide the definitions required for representing I/H models that span multiple spatiotemporal scales and conformational states, as well as spatial restraints derived from different experimental techniques. Based on these data definitions, we have built a prototype system called PDB-Dev, which provides the infrastructure necessary to archive I/H structural models. PDB-Dev is now accepting structures and is open to the community for new submissions. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Development of a flexible microfluidic system integrating magnetic micro-actuators for trapping biological species

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fulcrand, R; Jugieu, D; Escriba, C; Bancaud, A; Bourrier, D; Boukabache, A; Gué, A M

    2009-01-01

    A flexible microfluidic system embedding microelectromagnets has been designed, modeled and fabricated by using a photosensitive resin as structural material. The fabrication process involves the integration of micro-coils in a multilayer SU-8 microfluidic system by combining standard electroplating and dry films lamination. This technique offers numerous advantages in terms of integration, biocompatibility and chemical resistance. Various designs of micro-coils, including spiral, square or serpentine wires, have been simulated and experimentally tested. It has been established that thermal dissipation in micro-coils depends strongly on the number of turns and current density but remains compatible with biological applications. Real-time experimentations show that these micro-actuators are efficient in trapping magnetic micro-beads without any external field source or a permanent magnet and highlight that the size of microfluidic channels has been adequately designed for optimal trapping. Moreover, we trap magnetic beads in less than 2 s and release them instantaneously into the micro-channel. The actuation solely relies on electric fields, which are easier to control than standard magneto-fluidic modules

  3. Development of a flexible microfluidic system integrating magnetic micro-actuators for trapping biological species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fulcrand, R.; Jugieu, D.; Escriba, C.; Bancaud, A.; Bourrier, D.; Boukabache, A.; Gué, A. M.

    2009-10-01

    A flexible microfluidic system embedding microelectromagnets has been designed, modeled and fabricated by using a photosensitive resin as structural material. The fabrication process involves the integration of micro-coils in a multilayer SU-8 microfluidic system by combining standard electroplating and dry films lamination. This technique offers numerous advantages in terms of integration, biocompatibility and chemical resistance. Various designs of micro-coils, including spiral, square or serpentine wires, have been simulated and experimentally tested. It has been established that thermal dissipation in micro-coils depends strongly on the number of turns and current density but remains compatible with biological applications. Real-time experimentations show that these micro-actuators are efficient in trapping magnetic micro-beads without any external field source or a permanent magnet and highlight that the size of microfluidic channels has been adequately designed for optimal trapping. Moreover, we trap magnetic beads in less than 2 s and release them instantaneously into the micro-channel. The actuation solely relies on electric fields, which are easier to control than standard magneto-fluidic modules.

  4. Integration of systems biology with organs-on-chips to humanize therapeutic development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edington, Collin D.; Cirit, Murat; Chen, Wen Li Kelly; Clark, Amanda M.; Wells, Alan; Trumper, David L.; Griffith, Linda G.

    2017-02-01

    "Mice are not little people" - a refrain becoming louder as the gaps between animal models and human disease become more apparent. At the same time, three emerging approaches are headed toward integration: powerful systems biology analysis of cell-cell and intracellular signaling networks in patient-derived samples; 3D tissue engineered models of human organ systems, often made from stem cells; and micro-fluidic and meso-fluidic devices that enable living systems to be sustained, perturbed and analyzed for weeks in culture. Integration of these rapidly moving fields has the potential to revolutionize development of therapeutics for complex, chronic diseases, including those that have weak genetic bases and substantial contributions from gene-environment interactions. Technical challenges in modeling complex diseases with "organs on chips" approaches include the need for relatively large tissue masses and organ-organ cross talk to capture systemic effects, such that current microfluidic formats often fail to capture the required scale and complexity for interconnected systems. These constraints drive development of new strategies for designing in vitro models, including perfusing organ models, as well as "mesofluidic" pumping and circulation in platforms connecting several organ systems, to achieve the appropriate physiological relevance.

  5. A Candidate Vegetation Index of Biological Integrity Based on Species Dominance and Habitat Fidelity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gara, Brian D; Stapanian, Martin A.

    2015-01-01

    Indices of biological integrity of wetlands based on vascular plants (VIBIs) have been developed in many areas of the USA and are used in some states to make critical management decisions. An underlying concept of all VIBIs is that they respond negatively to disturbance. The Ohio VIBI (OVIBI) is calculated from 10 metrics, which are different for each wetland vegetation class. We present a candidate vegetation index of biotic integrity based on floristic quality (VIBI-FQ) that requires only two metrics to calculate an overall score regardless of vegetation class. These metrics focus equally on the critical ecosystem elements of diversity and dominance as related to a species’ degree of fidelity to habitat requirements. The indices were highly correlated but varied among vegetation classes. Both indices responded negatively with a published index of wetland disturbance in 261 Ohio wetlands. Unlike VIBI-FQ, however, errors in classifying wetland vegetation may lead to errors in calculating OVIBI scores. This is especially critical when assessing the ecological condition of rapidly developing ecosystems typically associated with wetland restoration and creation projects. Compared to OVIBI, the VIBI-FQ requires less field work, is much simpler to calculate and interpret, and can potentially be applied to all habitat types. This candidate index, which has been “standardized” across habitats, would make it easier to prioritize funding because it would score the “best” and “worst” of all habitats appropriately and allow for objective comparison across different vegetation classes.

  6. Area-wide integration of lepidopteran F1 sterility and augmentative biological control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carpenter, James E.

    2000-01-01

    Area-wide pest management (APM) and integrated pest management (IPM) originated from two different efforts to combine two or more control techniques into programmes in which each method could synergise the effectiveness of others and thus create a level of pest control that was greater than that of a single technique (Perkins 1982). Since then, the concept of APM has evolved to include many aspects of IPM and often is now referred to as area-wide IPM. Still, the element of total population management is central to this approach of insect pest management. In support of APM, Knipling (1998) stated that of the insect pests that were of major concern to agriculture before the newer classes of insecticides were available, most are still pests today, the major exceptions being the screw-worm fly and the boll weevil in the southeastern US cotton growing region. Knipling also noted that both of these pest species were subjected to area-wide suppression programmes. In response to the USDA IPM Initiative (USDA 1993, 1994) which seeks to achieve the national goal of having 75% of the crop acres under IPM by the year 2000, the Agricultural Research Service developed an Area-wide IPM Programme. This programme combines environmentally-sound pest control techniques with the advantages of APM and develops partnerships with other federal, state, local and private sector entities. Technologies such as the integration of lepidopteran F 1 sterility and augmentative biological control may be considered for future programmes

  7. Removal of Furfural From Wastewater Using Integrated Catalytic Ozonation and Biological Approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mostafa Leili

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Furfural with a chemical formula of C5H4O2 is a toxic compound which has several health problems for both humans and environment. It has a few exposure routes for entering the human body such as oral, dermal or nasal. In the present study, the efficacies of an integrated catalytic ozonation process (COP and novel cyclic biological reactor (CBR were explored for the removal of furfural from aqueous solutions. Activated carbon was purchased from Merck Company. It had a Brunauer, Emmett, and Teller (BET specific surface area of 1100 m2/g, with an average micropore volume and size of 0.385 cm3/g and 595 µm, respectively. The results indicated that 30% pretreatment with COP could increase furfural and chemical oxygen demand (COD removal efficiency with CBR 5.56% and 27.01%, respectively. With 70% pretreatment by COP, 98.57% furfural and 95.34% COD removal efficiencies happen in CBR. Generally, batch and continuous experiments showed that the integrated COP/CBR could be efficient in eliminating furfural from wastewater and thus may be a promising technique for treating furfural-containing wastewater.

  8. Does the Internet Accelerate the Integration of Domestic Markets? Evidence from China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lijuan Xie; Wenwei Ai; Hao Zhang

    2016-01-01

    This paper employs a hybrid methodology that combines case study and econometric research to examine the impact of the Internet on domestic market integration.There is not much research on this issue in the literature.From the multi-case analysis,this paper firstly obtains two main indications which are clear yet contrary to each other about how the Internet influences the market integration process.To be specific,although the Internet has both the ability and the potential to promote market integration,it is not always effective and could even harm this process due to several constraints.Using a provincial-level panel dataset from 2007 to 2013 in China,this paper empirically investigates whether the Intemet plays a positive role in the market integration process.Contradictory to common expectations,we do not find any empirical evidence that the Internet accelerates the integration of domestic markets.Thus,when compared with taking advantage of Internet tools,manmade obstacles to market integration that exist in current trading systems and business models deserve more attention.

  9. Suppressed visual looming stimuli are not integrated with auditory looming signals: Evidence from continuous flash suppression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moors, Pieter; Huygelier, Hanne; Wagemans, Johan; de-Wit, Lee; van Ee, Raymond

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies using binocular rivalry have shown that signals in a modality other than the visual can bias dominance durations depending on their congruency with the rivaling stimuli. More recently, studies using continuous flash suppression (CFS) have reported that multisensory integration influences how long visual stimuli remain suppressed. In this study, using CFS, we examined whether the contrast thresholds for detecting visual looming stimuli are influenced by a congruent auditory stimulus. In Experiment 1, we show that a looming visual stimulus can result in lower detection thresholds compared to a static concentric grating, but that auditory tone pips congruent with the looming stimulus did not lower suppression thresholds any further. In Experiments 2, 3, and 4, we again observed no advantage for congruent multisensory stimuli. These results add to our understanding of the conditions under which multisensory integration is possible, and suggest that certain forms of multisensory integration are not evident when the visual stimulus is suppressed from awareness using CFS.

  10. GeneLab Phase 2: Integrated Search Data Federation of Space Biology Experimental Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran, P. B.; Berrios, D. C.; Gurram, M. M.; Hashim, J. C. M.; Raghunandan, S.; Lin, S. Y.; Le, T. Q.; Heher, D. M.; Thai, H. T.; Welch, J. D.; hide

    2016-01-01

    The GeneLab project is a science initiative to maximize the scientific return of omics data collected from spaceflight and from ground simulations of microgravity and radiation experiments, supported by a data system for a public bioinformatics repository and collaborative analysis tools for these data. The mission of GeneLab is to maximize the utilization of the valuable biological research resources aboard the ISS by collecting genomic, transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic (so-called omics) data to enable the exploration of the molecular network responses of terrestrial biology to space environments using a systems biology approach. All GeneLab data are made available to a worldwide network of researchers through its open-access data system. GeneLab is currently being developed by NASA to support Open Science biomedical research in order to enable the human exploration of space and improve life on earth. Open access to Phase 1 of the GeneLab Data Systems (GLDS) was implemented in April 2015. Download volumes have grown steadily, mirroring the growth in curated space biology research data sets (61 as of June 2016), now exceeding 10 TB/month, with over 10,000 file downloads since the start of Phase 1. For the period April 2015 to May 2016, most frequently downloaded were data from studies of Mus musculus (39) followed closely by Arabidopsis thaliana (30), with the remaining downloads roughly equally split across 12 other organisms (each 10 of total downloads). GLDS Phase 2 is focusing on interoperability, supporting data federation, including integrated search capabilities, of GLDS-housed data sets with external data sources, such as gene expression data from NIHNCBIs Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO), proteomic data from EBIs PRIDE system, and metagenomic data from Argonne National Laboratory's MG-RAST. GEO and MG-RAST employ specifications for investigation metadata that are different from those used by the GLDS and PRIDE (e.g., ISA-Tab). The GLDS Phase 2 system

  11. Integration of gene expression and methylation to unravel biological networks in glioblastoma patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gadaleta, Francesco; Bessonov, Kyrylo; Van Steen, Kristel

    2017-02-01

    The vast amount of heterogeneous omics data, encompassing a broad range of biomolecular information, requires novel methods of analysis, including those that integrate the available levels of information. In this work, we describe Regression2Net, a computational approach that is able to integrate gene expression and genomic or methylation data in two steps. First, penalized regressions are used to build Expression-Expression (EEnet) and Expression-Genomic or Expression-Methylation (EMnet) networks. Second, network theory is used to highlight important communities of genes. When applying our approach, Regression2Net to gene expression and methylation profiles for individuals with glioblastoma multiforme, we identified, respectively, 284 and 447 potentially interesting genes in relation to glioblastoma pathology. These genes showed at least one connection in the integrated networks ANDnet and XORnet derived from aforementioned EEnet and EMnet networks. Although the edges in ANDnet occur in both EEnet and EMnet, the edges in XORnet occur in EMnet but not in EEnet. In-depth biological analysis of connected genes in ANDnet and XORnet revealed genes that are related to energy metabolism, cell cycle control (AATF), immune system response, and several cancer types. Importantly, we observed significant overrepresentation of cancer-related pathways including glioma, especially in the XORnet network, suggesting a nonignorable role of methylation in glioblastoma multiforma. In the ANDnet, we furthermore identified potential glioma suppressor genes ACCN3 and ACCN4 linked to the NBPF1 neuroblastoma breakpoint family, as well as numerous ABC transporter genes (ABCA1, ABCB1) suggesting drug resistance of glioblastoma tumors. © 2016 WILEY PERIODICALS, INC.

  12. International lessons in new methods for grading and integrating cost effectiveness evidence into clinical practice guidelines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antioch, Kathryn M; Drummond, Michael F; Niessen, Louis W; Vondeling, Hindrik

    2017-01-01

    Economic evidence is influential in health technology assessment world-wide. Clinical Practice Guidelines (CPG) can enable economists to include economic information on health care provision. Application of economic evidence in CPGs, and its integration into clinical practice and national decision making is hampered by objections from professions, paucity of economic evidence or lack of policy commitment. The use of state-of-art economic methodologies will improve this. Economic evidence can be graded by 'checklists' to establish the best evidence for decision making given methodological rigor. New economic evaluation checklists, Multi-Criteria Decision Analyses (MCDA) and other decision criteria enable health economists to impact on decision making world-wide. We analyse the methodologies for integrating economic evidence into CPG agencies globally, including the Agency of Health Research and Quality (AHRQ) in the USA, National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and Australian political reforms. The Guidelines and Economists Network International (GENI) Board members from Australia, UK, Canada and Denmark presented the findings at the conference of the International Health Economists Association (IHEA) and we report conclusions and developments since. The Consolidated Guidelines for the Reporting of Economic Evaluations (CHEERS) 24 item check list can be used by AHRQ, NHMRC, other CPG and health organisations, in conjunction with the Drummond ten-point check list and a questionnaire that scores that checklist for grading studies, when assessing economic evidence. Cost-effectiveness Analysis (CEA) thresholds, opportunity cost and willingness-to-pay (WTP) are crucial issues for decision rules in CEA generally, including end-of-life therapies. Limitations of inter-rater reliability in checklists can be addressed by including more than one assessor to reach a consensus, especially when impacting on treatment decisions. We identify priority areas to generate

  13. A monograph assignment as an integrative application of evidence-based medicine and pharmacoeconomic principles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Law, Anandi V; Jackevicius, Cynthia A; Bounthavong, Mark

    2011-02-10

    To describe the development and assessment of monographs as an assignment to incorporate evidence-based medicine (EBM) and pharmacoeconomic principles into a third-year pharmacoeconomic course. Eight newly FDA-approved drugs were assigned to 16 teams of students, where each drug was assigned to 2 teams. Teams had to research their drug, write a professional monograph, deliver an oral presentation, and answer questions posed by faculty judges. One team was asked to present evidence for inclusion of the drug into a formulary, while another team presented evidence against inclusion. The teams' average score on the written report was 99.1%; on the oral presentation, 92.5%, and on the online quiz given at the end of the presentations, 77%. Monographs are a successful method of incorporating and integrating learning across different concepts, as well as increasing relevance of pharmacoeconomics in the PharmD curriculum.

  14. Evaluating the effect of integrated microfinance and health interventions: an updated review of the evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzetti, Lara M J; Leatherman, Sheila; Flax, Valerie L

    2017-06-01

    Solutions delivered within firm sectoral boundaries are inadequate in achieving income security and better health for poor populations. Integrated microfinance and health interventions leverage networks of women to promote financial inclusion, build livelihoods, and safeguard against high cost illnesses. Our understanding of the effect of integrated interventions has been limited by variability in intervention, outcome, design, and methodological rigour. This systematic review synthesises the literature through 2015 to understand the effect of integrated microfinance and health programs. We searched PubMed, Scopus, Embase, EconLit, and Global Health databases and sourced bibliographies, identifying 964 articles exclusive of duplicates. Title, abstract, and full text review yielded 35 articles. Articles evaluated the effect of intentionally integrated microfinance and health programs on client outcomes. We rated the quality of evidence for each article. Most interventions combined microfinance with health education, which demonstrated positive effects on health knowledge and behaviours, though not health status. Among programs that integrated microfinance with other health components ( i.e. health micro-insurance, linkages to health providers, and access to health products), results were generally positive but mixed due to the smaller number and quality of studies. Interventions combining multiple health components in a given study demonstrated positive effects, though it was unclear which component was driving the effect. Most articles (57%) were moderate in quality. Integrated microfinance and health education programs were effective, though longer intervention periods are necessary to measure more complex pathways to health status. The effect of microfinance combined with other health components was less clear. Stronger randomized research designs with multiple study arms are required to improve evidence and disentangle the effects of multiple component

  15. Using the Semantic Web for Rapid Integration of WikiPathways with Other Biological Online Data Resources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waagmeester, Andra; Kutmon, Martina; Riutta, Anders; Miller, Ryan; Willighagen, Egon L; Evelo, Chris T; Pico, Alexander R

    2016-06-01

    The diversity of online resources storing biological data in different formats provides a challenge for bioinformaticians to integrate and analyse their biological data. The semantic web provides a standard to facilitate knowledge integration using statements built as triples describing a relation between two objects. WikiPathways, an online collaborative pathway resource, is now available in the semantic web through a SPARQL endpoint at http://sparql.wikipathways.org. Having biological pathways in the semantic web allows rapid integration with data from other resources that contain information about elements present in pathways using SPARQL queries. In order to convert WikiPathways content into meaningful triples we developed two new vocabularies that capture the graphical representation and the pathway logic, respectively. Each gene, protein, and metabolite in a given pathway is defined with a standard set of identifiers to support linking to several other biological resources in the semantic web. WikiPathways triples were loaded into the Open PHACTS discovery platform and are available through its Web API (https://dev.openphacts.org/docs) to be used in various tools for drug development. We combined various semantic web resources with the newly converted WikiPathways content using a variety of SPARQL query types and third-party resources, such as the Open PHACTS API. The ability to use pathway information to form new links across diverse biological data highlights the utility of integrating WikiPathways in the semantic web.

  16. Using the Semantic Web for Rapid Integration of WikiPathways with Other Biological Online Data Resources.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andra Waagmeester

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The diversity of online resources storing biological data in different formats provides a challenge for bioinformaticians to integrate and analyse their biological data. The semantic web provides a standard to facilitate knowledge integration using statements built as triples describing a relation between two objects. WikiPathways, an online collaborative pathway resource, is now available in the semantic web through a SPARQL endpoint at http://sparql.wikipathways.org. Having biological pathways in the semantic web allows rapid integration with data from other resources that contain information about elements present in pathways using SPARQL queries. In order to convert WikiPathways content into meaningful triples we developed two new vocabularies that capture the graphical representation and the pathway logic, respectively. Each gene, protein, and metabolite in a given pathway is defined with a standard set of identifiers to support linking to several other biological resources in the semantic web. WikiPathways triples were loaded into the Open PHACTS discovery platform and are available through its Web API (https://dev.openphacts.org/docs to be used in various tools for drug development. We combined various semantic web resources with the newly converted WikiPathways content using a variety of SPARQL query types and third-party resources, such as the Open PHACTS API. The ability to use pathway information to form new links across diverse biological data highlights the utility of integrating WikiPathways in the semantic web.

  17. Using the Semantic Web for Rapid Integration of WikiPathways with Other Biological Online Data Resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waagmeester, Andra; Pico, Alexander R.

    2016-01-01

    The diversity of online resources storing biological data in different formats provides a challenge for bioinformaticians to integrate and analyse their biological data. The semantic web provides a standard to facilitate knowledge integration using statements built as triples describing a relation between two objects. WikiPathways, an online collaborative pathway resource, is now available in the semantic web through a SPARQL endpoint at http://sparql.wikipathways.org. Having biological pathways in the semantic web allows rapid integration with data from other resources that contain information about elements present in pathways using SPARQL queries. In order to convert WikiPathways content into meaningful triples we developed two new vocabularies that capture the graphical representation and the pathway logic, respectively. Each gene, protein, and metabolite in a given pathway is defined with a standard set of identifiers to support linking to several other biological resources in the semantic web. WikiPathways triples were loaded into the Open PHACTS discovery platform and are available through its Web API (https://dev.openphacts.org/docs) to be used in various tools for drug development. We combined various semantic web resources with the newly converted WikiPathways content using a variety of SPARQL query types and third-party resources, such as the Open PHACTS API. The ability to use pathway information to form new links across diverse biological data highlights the utility of integrating WikiPathways in the semantic web. PMID:27336457

  18. A multidisciplinary weight of evidence approach for environmental risk assessment at the Costa Concordia wreck: Integrative indices from Mussel Watch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regoli, Francesco; Pellegrini, David; Cicero, Anna Maria; Nigro, Marco; Benedetti, Maura; Gorbi, Stefania; Fattorini, Daniele; D'Errico, Giuseppe; Di Carlo, Marta; Nardi, Alessandro; Gaion, Andrea; Scuderi, Alice; Giuliani, Silvia; Romanelli, Giulia; Berto, Daniela; Trabucco, Benedetta; Guidi, Patrizia; Bernardeschi, Margherita; Scarcelli, Vittoria; Frenzilli, Giada

    2014-05-01

    A complex framework of chemical, biological and oceanographic activities was immediately activated after the Costa Concordia shipwreck, to assess possible contamination events and the environmental impact during both emergency and wreck removal operations. In the present paper, we describe the results obtained with caged mussels, Mytilus galloprovincialis, chosen as bioindicator organisms to detect variations of bioavailability and the early onset of molecular and cellular effects (biomarkers). Seven translocation experiments were carried out during the first year from the incident, with organisms deployed at 2 depths in 3 different sites. After 4-6 weeks, tissue concentrations were measured for the main classes of potentially released chemicals (trace metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, volatile and aliphatic hydrocarbons, polychlorinated biphenyls, halogenated pesticides, organotin compounds, brominated flame retardants, anionic surfactants); a wide battery of biomarkers covered responses indicative of exposure, detoxification, oxidative stress, cell damage and genotoxic effects. Results excluded serious contamination events or a consistent increase of environmental pollution although some episodic spills with reversible effects were detected. Data were elaborated within a quantitative weight of evidence (WOE) model which provided synthetic hazard indices for each typology of data, before their overall integration in an environmental risk index, which generally ranged from slight to moderate. The proposed WOE model was confirmed a useful tool to summarize large datasets of complex data in integrative indices, and to simplify the interpretation for stakeholders and decision makers, thus supporting a more comprehensive process of "site-oriented" management decisions. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Harnessing the Power of Integrated Mitochondrial Biology and Physiology: A Special Report on the NHLBI Mitochondria in Heart Diseases Initiative.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ping, Peipei; Gustafsson, Åsa B; Bers, Don M; Blatter, Lothar A; Cai, Hua; Jahangir, Arshad; Kelly, Daniel; Muoio, Deborah; O'Rourke, Brian; Rabinovitch, Peter; Trayanova, Natalia; Van Eyk, Jennifer; Weiss, James N; Wong, Renee; Schwartz Longacre, Lisa

    2015-07-17

    Mitochondrial biology is the sum of diverse phenomena from molecular profiles to physiological functions. A mechanistic understanding of mitochondria in disease development, and hence the future prospect of clinical translations, relies on a systems-level integration of expertise from multiple fields of investigation. Upon the successful conclusion of a recent National Institutes of Health, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute initiative on integrative mitochondrial biology in cardiovascular diseases, we reflect on the accomplishments made possible by this unique interdisciplinary collaboration effort and exciting new fronts on the study of these remarkable organelles. © 2015 American Heart Association, Inc.

  20. A computational systems biology software platform for multiscale modeling and simulation: Integrating whole-body physiology, disease biology, and molecular reaction networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas eEissing

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Today, in silico studies and trial simulations already complement experimental approaches in pharmaceutical R&D and have become indispensable tools for decision making and communication with regulatory agencies. While biology is multi-scale by nature, project work and software tools usually focus on isolated aspects of drug action, such as pharmacokinetics at the organism scale or pharmacodynamic interaction on the molecular level. We present a modeling and simulation software platform consisting of PK-Sim® and MoBi® capable of building and simulating models that integrate across biological scales. A prototypical multiscale model for the progression of a pancreatic tumor and its response to pharmacotherapy is constructed and virtual patients are treated with a prodrug activated by hepatic metabolization. Tumor growth is driven by signal transduction leading to cell cycle transition and proliferation. Free tumor concentrations of the active metabolite inhibit Raf kinase in the signaling cascade and thereby cell cycle progression. In a virtual clinical study, the individual therapeutic outcome of the chemotherapeutic intervention is simulated for a large population with heterogeneous genomic background. Thereby, the platform allows efficient model building and integration of biological knowledge and prior data from all biological scales. Experimental in vitro model systems can be linked with observations in animal experiments and clinical trials. The interplay between patients, diseases, and drugs and topics with high clinical relevance such as the role of pharmacogenomics, drug-drug or drug-metabolite interactions can be addressed using this mechanistic, insight driven multiscale modeling approach.

  1. 'Integrative Physiology 2.0': Integration of systems biology into physiology and its application to cardiovascular homeostasis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    D.W.D. Kuster (Diederik); D. Merkus (Daphne); J. van der Velden (Jolanda); A.J.M. Verhoeven (Adrie); D.J.G.M. Duncker (Dirk)

    2011-01-01

    textabstractSince the completion of the Human Genome Project and the advent of the large scaled unbiased '-omics' techniques, the field of systems biology has emerged. Systems biology aims to move away from the traditional reductionist molecular approach, which focused on understanding the role of

  2. Fungal biological control agents for integrated management of Culicoides spp. (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae of livestock

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. W. Narladkar

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Aim: Entomopathogenic fungi Metarhizium anisopliae and Beauveria bassiana had wide host range against insects and hence these are being exploited as fungal bio-pesticide on a large scale. Both fungi are proved pesticides against many crop pests and farmers are well acquainted with their use on the field. Thus, research was aimed to explore the potency of these fungal spores against larval and adult Culicoides midges, a pest of livestock. Materials and Methods: In-vitro testing of both fungal biological control agents was undertaken in Petri dishes against field collected Culicoides larvae, while in plastic beakers against field collected blood-engorged female Culicoides midges. In-vivo testing was undertaken by spraying requisite concentration of fungal spores on the drainage channel against larvae and resting sites of adult Culicoides midges in the cattle shed. Lethal concentration 50 (LC50 values and regression equations were drawn by following probit analysis using SPSS statistical computerized program. Results: The results of this study revealed LC50 values of 2692 mg and 3837 mg (108 cfu/g for B. bassiana and M. anisopliae, respectively, against Culicoides spp. larvae. Death of Culicoides larvae due to B. bassiana showed greenish coloration in the middle of the body with head and tail showed intense blackish changes, while infection of M. anisopliae resulted in death of Culicoides larvae with greenish and blackish coloration of body along with total destruction, followed by desquamation of intestinal channel. The death of adult Culicoides midges were caused by both the fungi and after death growth of fungus were very well observed on the dead cadavers proving the efficacy of the fungus. Conclusion: Preliminary trials with both funguses (M. anisopliae, B. bassiana showed encouraging results against larvae and adults of Culicoides spp. Hence, it was ascertained that, these two fungal molecules can form a part of biological control and

  3. A quantitative approach for integrating multiple lines of evidence for the evaluation of environmental health risks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jerome J. Schleier III

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Decision analysis often considers multiple lines of evidence during the decision making process. Researchers and government agencies have advocated for quantitative weight-of-evidence approaches in which multiple lines of evidence can be considered when estimating risk. Therefore, we utilized Bayesian Markov Chain Monte Carlo to integrate several human-health risk assessment, biomonitoring, and epidemiology studies that have been conducted for two common insecticides (malathion and permethrin used for adult mosquito management to generate an overall estimate of risk quotient (RQ. The utility of the Bayesian inference for risk management is that the estimated risk represents a probability distribution from which the probability of exceeding a threshold can be estimated. The mean RQs after all studies were incorporated were 0.4386, with a variance of 0.0163 for malathion and 0.3281 with a variance of 0.0083 for permethrin. After taking into account all of the evidence available on the risks of ULV insecticides, the probability that malathion or permethrin would exceed a level of concern was less than 0.0001. Bayesian estimates can substantially improve decisions by allowing decision makers to estimate the probability that a risk will exceed a level of concern by considering seemingly disparate lines of evidence.

  4. Integration of multiple biological features yields high confidence human protein interactome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karagoz, Kubra; Sevimoglu, Tuba; Arga, Kazim Yalcin

    2016-08-21

    The biological function of a protein is usually determined by its physical interaction with other proteins. Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) are identified through various experimental methods and are stored in curated databases. The noisiness of the existing PPI data is evident, and it is essential that a more reliable data is generated. Furthermore, the selection of a set of PPIs at different confidence levels might be necessary for many studies. Although different methodologies were introduced to evaluate the confidence scores for binary interactions, a highly reliable, almost complete PPI network of Homo sapiens is not proposed yet. The quality and coverage of human protein interactome need to be improved to be used in various disciplines, especially in biomedicine. In the present work, we propose an unsupervised statistical approach to assign confidence scores to PPIs of H. sapiens. To achieve this goal PPI data from six different databases were collected and a total of 295,288 non-redundant interactions between 15,950 proteins were acquired. The present scoring system included the context information that was assigned to PPIs derived from eight biological attributes. A high confidence network, which included 147,923 binary interactions between 13,213 proteins, had scores greater than the cutoff value of 0.80, for which sensitivity, specificity, and coverage were 94.5%, 80.9%, and 82.8%, respectively. We compared the present scoring method with others for evaluation. Reducing the noise inherent in experimental PPIs via our scoring scheme increased the accuracy significantly. As it was demonstrated through the assessment of process and cancer subnetworks, this study allows researchers to construct and analyze context-specific networks via valid PPI sets and one can easily achieve subnetworks around proteins of interest at a specified confidence level. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Uncharted waters: Bivalves of midway atoll and integrating mathematics into biology education

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCully, Kristin M.

    To protect and conserve the Earth's biodiversity and ecosystem services, it is important not only to understand and conserve species and ecosystems, but also to instill an understanding and appreciation for biodiversity and ecosystem services in the next generations of both scientists and citizens. Thus, this dissertation combines research into the ecology and identity of large bivalves at Midway Atoll in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI) with research on pedagogical strategies for integrating mathematics into undergraduate biology education. The NWHI is one of the few remaining large, mainly intact, predator-dominated coral reef ecosystems and one of the world's largest marine protected areas. Previous bivalve studies focused on the black-lipped pearl oyster, Pinctada margaritifera, which was heavily harvested in the late 1920s, has not recovered, and is now a candidate species for restoration. First, I combined remote sensing, geographic information systems, SCUBA, and mathematical modeling to quantify the abundance, spatial distributions, and filtration capacity of large epifaunal bivalves at Midway Atoll. These bivalves are most abundant on the forereef outside the atoll, but densities are much lower than reported on other reefs, and Midway's bivalves are unlikely to affect plankton abundance and productivity inside the lagoon. Second, I used molecular techniques and phylogenetic reconstructions to identify pearl oysters (Pinctada) from Midway Atoll as P. maculata , a species not previously reported in Hawaii. As a small morphologically cryptic species, P. maculata may be a native species that has not been collected previously, a native species that has been identified incorrectly as the morphologically similar P. radiata, or it may be a recent introduction or natural range extension from the western Pacific. Finally, I review science education literature integrating mathematics into undergraduate biology curricula, and then present and evaluate a

  6. Electrophysiological evidence for a self-processing advantage during audiovisual speech integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Treille, Avril; Vilain, Coriandre; Kandel, Sonia; Sato, Marc

    2017-09-01

    Previous electrophysiological studies have provided strong evidence for early multisensory integrative mechanisms during audiovisual speech perception. From these studies, one unanswered issue is whether hearing our own voice and seeing our own articulatory gestures facilitate speech perception, possibly through a better processing and integration of sensory inputs with our own sensory-motor knowledge. The present EEG study examined the impact of self-knowledge during the perception of auditory (A), visual (V) and audiovisual (AV) speech stimuli that were previously recorded from the participant or from a speaker he/she had never met. Audiovisual interactions were estimated by comparing N1 and P2 auditory evoked potentials during the bimodal condition (AV) with the sum of those observed in the unimodal conditions (A + V). In line with previous EEG studies, our results revealed an amplitude decrease of P2 auditory evoked potentials in AV compared to A + V conditions. Crucially, a temporal facilitation of N1 responses was observed during the visual perception of self speech movements compared to those of another speaker. This facilitation was negatively correlated with the saliency of visual stimuli. These results provide evidence for a temporal facilitation of the integration of auditory and visual speech signals when the visual situation involves our own speech gestures.

  7. Continuous track paths reveal additive evidence integration in multistep decision making.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buc Calderon, Cristian; Dewulf, Myrtille; Gevers, Wim; Verguts, Tom

    2017-10-03

    Multistep decision making pervades daily life, but its underlying mechanisms remain obscure. We distinguish four prominent models of multistep decision making, namely serial stage, hierarchical evidence integration, hierarchical leaky competing accumulation (HLCA), and probabilistic evidence integration (PEI). To empirically disentangle these models, we design a two-step reward-based decision paradigm and implement it in a reaching task experiment. In a first step, participants choose between two potential upcoming choices, each associated with two rewards. In a second step, participants choose between the two rewards selected in the first step. Strikingly, as predicted by the HLCA and PEI models, the first-step decision dynamics were initially biased toward the choice representing the highest sum/mean before being redirected toward the choice representing the maximal reward (i.e., initial dip). Only HLCA and PEI predicted this initial dip, suggesting that first-step decision dynamics depend on additive integration of competing second-step choices. Our data suggest that potential future outcomes are progressively unraveled during multistep decision making.

  8. Evidence and Feasibility of Implementing an Integrated Wellness Program in Northeast Georgia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flanigan, Amber; Salm Ward, Trina

    2017-08-01

    Evidence for the connection between physical and mental health is growing, as is interest in providing a holistic, mind-body approach to improving mental health and wellness. A needs assessment in northeast Georgia identified several regional health priorities, including mental health and substance abuse, access to care, and cardiovascular health. The study's purpose is threefold: to (1) review evidence for integrated mind-body wellness services, (2) explore the feasibility of implementing wellness services in a small mental health agency serving northeast Georgia, and (3) conduct a brief survey assessing interest in a wellness program. The literature search identified articles within the past 10 years with these key words: "yoga," "mental health," "wellness program," "complementary alternative medicine," "tai chi," "mindfulness," "meditation," and "nutrition." The survey was distributed to the agency's affiliates. The literature review identified strong evidence for an integrated mind-body wellness program that includes yoga, tai chi, mindfulness meditation, and nutrition education. Among 73 survey respondents, 86 percent indicated interest in wellness services, and 85 percent agreed that wellness services are important to mental health and well-being. Authors suggest a model to incorporate a holistic wellness program to complement mental health services and help facilitate physical and mental health. © 2017 National Association of Social Workers.

  9. How experimental biology and ecology can support evidence-based decision-making in conservation: avoiding pitfalls and enabling application.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooke, Steven J; Birnie-Gauvin, Kim; Lennox, Robert J; Taylor, Jessica J; Rytwinski, Trina; Rummer, Jodie L; Franklin, Craig E; Bennett, Joseph R; Haddaway, Neal R

    2017-01-01

    Policy development and management decisions should be based upon the best available evidence. In recent years, approaches to evidence synthesis, originating in the medical realm (such as systematic reviews), have been applied to conservation to promote evidence-based conservation and environmental management. Systematic reviews involve a critical appraisal of evidence, but studies that lack the necessary rigour (e.g. experimental, technical and analytical aspects) to justify their conclusions are typically excluded from systematic reviews or down-weighted in terms of their influence. One of the strengths of conservation physiology is the reliance on experimental approaches that help to more clearly establish cause-and-effect relationships. Indeed, experimental biology and ecology have much to offer in terms of building the evidence base that is needed to inform policy and management options related to pressing issues such as enacting endangered species recovery plans or evaluating the effectiveness of conservation interventions. Here, we identify a number of pitfalls that can prevent experimental findings from being relevant to conservation or would lead to their exclusion or down-weighting during critical appraisal in a systematic review. We conclude that conservation physiology is well positioned to support evidence-based conservation, provided that experimental designs are robust and that conservation physiologists understand the nuances associated with informing decision-making processes so that they can be more relevant.

  10. Delivering The Benefits of Chemical-Biological Integration in Computational Toxicology at the EPA (ACS Fall meeting)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abstract: Researchers at the EPA’s National Center for Computational Toxicology integrate advances in biology, chemistry, and computer science to examine the toxicity of chemicals and help prioritize chemicals for further research based on potential human health risks. The intent...

  11. Integrative Assessment of Evolutionary Theory Acceptance and Knowledge Levels of Biology Undergraduate Students from a Brazilian University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tavares, Gustavo Medina; Bobrowski, Vera Lucia

    2018-01-01

    The integrative role that Evolutionary theory plays within Biology is recognised by most scientific authors, as well as in governmental education policies, including Brazilian policies. However, teaching and learning evolution seems problematic in many countries, and Brazil is among those. Many factors may affect teachers' and students'…

  12. Water as Life, Death, and Power: Building an Integrated Interdisciplinary Course Combining Perspectives from Anthropology, Biology, and Chemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willermet, Cathy; Mueller, Anja; Juris, Stephen J.; Drake, Eron; Upadhaya, Samik; Chhetri, Pratik

    2013-01-01

    In response to a request from a campus student organization, faculty from three fields came together to develop and teach an integrated interdisciplinary course on water issues and social activism. This course, "Water as Life, Death, and Power", brought together topics from the fields of anthropology, biology and chemistry to explore…

  13. Experimental evidence of biological interactions among different isolates of Trypanosoma cruzi from the Chaco Region.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula G Ragone

    Full Text Available Many infectious diseases arise from co-infections or re-infections with more than one genotype of the same pathogen. These mixed infections could alter host fitness, the severity of symptoms, success in pathogen transmission and the epidemiology of the disease. Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiological agent of Chagas disease, exhibits a high biological variability often correlated with its genetic diversity. Here, we developed an experimental approach in order to evaluate biological interaction between three T. cruzi isolates belonging to different Discrete Typing Units (DTUs TcIII, TcV and TcVI. These isolates were obtained from a restricted geographical area in the Chaco Region. Different mixed infections involving combinations of two isolates (TcIII + TcV, TcIII + TcVI and TcV + TcVI were studied in a mouse model. The parameters evaluated were number of parasites circulating in peripheral blood, histopathology and genetic characterization of each DTU in different tissues by DNA hybridization probes. We found a predominance of TcVI isolate in blood and tissues respect to TcIII and TcV; and a decrease of the inflammatory response in heart when the damage of mice infected with TcVI and TcIII + TcVI mixture were compared. In addition, simultaneous presence of two isolates in the same tissue was not detected. Our results show that biological interactions between isolates with different biological behaviors lead to changes in their biological properties. The occurrence of interactions among different genotypes of T. cruzi observed in our mouse model suggests that these phenomena could also occur in natural cycles in the Chaco Region.

  14. An Integrated Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Approach Identifies New BH3-Only Protein Candidates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawley, Robert G; Chen, Yuzhong; Riz, Irene; Zeng, Chen

    2012-05-04

    In this study, we utilized an integrated bioinformatics and computational biology approach in search of new BH3-only proteins belonging to the BCL2 family of apoptotic regulators. The BH3 (BCL2 homology 3) domain mediates specific binding interactions among various BCL2 family members. It is composed of an amphipathic α-helical region of approximately 13 residues that has only a few amino acids that are highly conserved across all members. Using a generalized motif, we performed a genome-wide search for novel BH3-containing proteins in the NCBI Consensus Coding Sequence (CCDS) database. In addition to known pro-apoptotic BH3-only proteins, 197 proteins were recovered that satisfied the search criteria. These were categorized according to α-helical content and predictive binding to BCL-xL (encoded by BCL2L1) and MCL-1, two representative anti-apoptotic BCL2 family members, using position-specific scoring matrix models. Notably, the list is enriched for proteins associated with autophagy as well as a broad spectrum of cellular stress responses such as endoplasmic reticulum stress, oxidative stress, antiviral defense, and the DNA damage response. Several potential novel BH3-containing proteins are highlighted. In particular, the analysis strongly suggests that the apoptosis inhibitor and DNA damage response regulator, AVEN, which was originally isolated as a BCL-xL-interacting protein, is a functional BH3-only protein representing a distinct subclass of BCL2 family members.

  15. Optimization of integrated chemical-biological degradation of a reactive azo dye using response surface methodology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sudarjanto, Gatut [Advanced Wastewater Management Centre, The University of Queensland, Qld 4072 (Australia); Keller-Lehmann, Beatrice [Advanced Wastewater Management Centre, The University of Queensland, Qld 4072 (Australia); Keller, Jurg [Advanced Wastewater Management Centre, The University of Queensland, Qld 4072 (Australia)]. E-mail: j.keller@awmc.uq.edu.au

    2006-11-02

    The integrated chemical-biological degradation combining advanced oxidation by UV/H{sub 2}O{sub 2} followed by aerobic biodegradation was used to degrade C.I. Reactive Azo Red 195A, commonly used in the textile industry in Australia. An experimental design based on the response surface method was applied to evaluate the interactive effects of influencing factors (UV irradiation time, initial hydrogen peroxide dosage and recirculation ratio of the system) on decolourisation efficiency and optimizing the operating conditions of the treatment process. The effects were determined by the measurement of dye concentration and soluble chemical oxygen demand (S-COD). The results showed that the dye and S-COD removal were affected by all factors individually and interactively. Maximal colour degradation performance was predicted, and experimentally validated, with no recirculation, 30 min UV irradiation and 500 mg H{sub 2}O{sub 2}/L. The model predictions for colour removal, based on a three-factor/five-level Box-Wilson central composite design and the response surface method analysis, were found to be very close to additional experimental results obtained under near optimal conditions. This demonstrates the benefits of this approach in achieving good predictions while minimising the number of experiments required.

  16. Optimization of integrated chemical-biological degradation of a reactive azo dye using response surface methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sudarjanto, Gatut; Keller-Lehmann, Beatrice; Keller, Jurg

    2006-01-01

    The integrated chemical-biological degradation combining advanced oxidation by UV/H 2 O 2 followed by aerobic biodegradation was used to degrade C.I. Reactive Azo Red 195A, commonly used in the textile industry in Australia. An experimental design based on the response surface method was applied to evaluate the interactive effects of influencing factors (UV irradiation time, initial hydrogen peroxide dosage and recirculation ratio of the system) on decolourisation efficiency and optimizing the operating conditions of the treatment process. The effects were determined by the measurement of dye concentration and soluble chemical oxygen demand (S-COD). The results showed that the dye and S-COD removal were affected by all factors individually and interactively. Maximal colour degradation performance was predicted, and experimentally validated, with no recirculation, 30 min UV irradiation and 500 mg H 2 O 2 /L. The model predictions for colour removal, based on a three-factor/five-level Box-Wilson central composite design and the response surface method analysis, were found to be very close to additional experimental results obtained under near optimal conditions. This demonstrates the benefits of this approach in achieving good predictions while minimising the number of experiments required

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  18. MIPS Arabidopsis thaliana Database (MAtDB): an integrated biological knowledge resource for plant genomics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schoof, Heiko; Ernst, Rebecca; Nazarov, Vladimir; Pfeifer, Lukas; Mewes, Hans-Werner; Mayer, Klaus F. X.

    2004-01-01

    Arabidopsis thaliana is the most widely studied model plant. Functional genomics is intensively underway in many laboratories worldwide. Beyond the basic annotation of the primary sequence data, the annotated genetic elements of Arabidopsis must be linked to diverse biological data and higher order information such as metabolic or regulatory pathways. The MIPS Arabidopsis thaliana database MAtDB aims to provide a comprehensive resource for Arabidopsis as a genome model that serves as a primary reference for research in plants and is suitable for transfer of knowledge to other plants, especially crops. The genome sequence as a common backbone serves as a scaffold for the integration of data, while, in a complementary effort, these data are enhanced through the application of state-of-the-art bioinformatics tools. This information is visualized on a genome-wide and a gene-by-gene basis with access both for web users and applications. This report updates the information given in a previous report and provides an outlook on further developments. The MAtDB web interface can be accessed at http://mips.gsf.de/proj/thal/db. PMID:14681437

  19. Impact of Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Research in mathematics and biology on the development of a new course integrating five STEM disciplines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caudill, Lester; Hill, April; Hoke, Kathy; Lipan, Ovidiu

    2010-01-01

    Funded by innovative programs at the National Science Foundation and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of Richmond faculty in biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics, and computer science teamed up to offer first- and second-year students the opportunity to contribute to vibrant, interdisciplinary research projects. The result was not only good science but also good science that motivated and informed course development. Here, we describe four recent undergraduate research projects involving students and faculty in biology, physics, mathematics, and computer science and how each contributed in significant ways to the conception and implementation of our new Integrated Quantitative Science course, a course for first-year students that integrates the material in the first course of the major in each of biology, chemistry, mathematics, computer science, and physics.

  20. Is ASEAN Ready for Banking Integration? Evidence from Interest Rate Convergence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fazelina Sahul Hamid

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Convergence in prices or returns of assets with similar characteristics indicates that the financial market is integrated with regional markets. This paper is the first that test of the movements of interest rates in ASEAN banking sector for the period 1990 - 2012. The empirical analysis is based on a yearly panel of commercial bank interest rate data from 5 ASEAN countries, namely, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand. We assessed the degree and speed of interest rate convergence using beta and sigma convergence method. The findings show that the difference and the dispersion in the interbank rates have reduced since the Asian financial crisis and this trend has become stronger after the Global financial crisis. The findings of this study confirm that interest rates in the ASEAN banking sector are converging. This provides evidence that the ASEAN banking sector is ready for financial integration.

  1. Integration of multiscale dendritic spine structure and function data into systems biology models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James J Mancuso

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Comprising 1011 neurons with 1014 synaptic connections the human brain is the ultimate systems biology puzzle. An increasing body of evidence highlights the observation that changes in brain function, both normal and pathological, consistently correlate with dynamic changes in neuronal anatomy. Anatomical changes occur on a full range of scales from the trafficking of individual proteins, to alterations in synaptic morphology both individually and on a systems level, to reductions in long distance connectivity and brain volume. The major sites of contact for synapsing neurons are dendritic spines, which provide an excellent metric for the number and strength of signaling connections between elements of functional neuronal circuits. A comprehensive model of anatomical changes and their functional consequences would be a holy grail for the field of systems neuroscience but its realization appears far on the horizon. Various imaging technologies have advanced to allow for multi-scale visualization of brain plasticity and pathology, but computational analysis of the massive big data sets involved forms the bottleneck toward the creation of multiscale models of brain structure and function. While a full accounting of techniques and progress toward a comprehensive model of brain anatomy and function is beyond the scope of this or any other single paper, this review serves to highlight the opportunities for analysis of neuronal spine anatomy and function provided by new imaging technologies and the high-throughput application of older technologies while surveying the strengths and weaknesses of currently available computational analytical tools and room for future improvement.

  2. The Navigation Guide—Evidence-Based Medicine Meets Environmental Health: Integration of Animal and Human Evidence for PFOA Effects on Fetal Growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koustas, Erica; Sutton, Patrice; Johnson, Paula I.; Atchley, Dylan S.; Sen, Saunak; Robinson, Karen A.; Axelrad, Daniel A.; Woodruff, Tracey J.

    2014-01-01

    Background: The Navigation Guide is a novel systematic review method to synthesize scientific evidence and reach strength of evidence conclusions for environmental health decision making. Objective: Our aim was to integrate scientific findings from human and nonhuman studies to determine the overall strength of evidence for the question “Does developmental exposure to perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) affect fetal growth in humans?” Methods: We developed and applied prespecified criteria to systematically and transparently a) rate the quality of the scientific evidence as “high,” “moderate,” or “low”; b) rate the strength of the human and nonhuman evidence separately as “sufficient,” “limited,” “moderate,” or “evidence of lack of toxicity”; and c) integrate the strength of the human and nonhuman evidence ratings into a strength of the evidence conclusion. Results: We identified 18 epidemiology studies and 21 animal toxicology studies relevant to our study question. We rated both the human and nonhuman mammalian evidence as “moderate” quality and “sufficient” strength. Integration of these evidence ratings produced a final strength of evidence rating in which review authors concluded that PFOA is “known to be toxic” to human reproduction and development based on sufficient evidence of decreased fetal growth in both human and nonhuman mammalian species. Conclusion: We concluded that developmental exposure to PFOA adversely affects human health based on sufficient evidence of decreased fetal growth in both human and nonhuman mammalian species. The results of this case study demonstrate the application of a systematic and transparent methodology, via the Navigation Guide, for reaching strength of evidence conclusions in environmental health. Citation: Lam J, Koustas E, Sutton P, Johnson PI, Atchley DS, Sen S, Robinson KA, Axelrad DA, Woodruff TJ. 2014. The Navigation Guide—evidence-based medicine meets environmental health

  3. Integrating nutrition and child development interventions: scientific basis, evidence of impact, and implementation considerations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Black, Maureen M; Pérez-Escamilla, Rafael; Rao, Sylvia Fernandez

    2015-11-01

    The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have contributed to unprecedented reductions in poverty and improvement in the lives of millions of men, women, and children in low- and middle-income countries. Yet, hundreds of millions of children under 5 y of age are not reaching their developmental potential. This article reviews the scientific basis for early childhood nutrition and child development interventions, the impact of integrated interventions on children's linear growth and cognitive development, and implementation strategies for integrated nutrition and child development programs. Advances in brain science have documented that the origins of adult health and well-being are grounded in early childhood, from conception through age 24 mo (first 1000 d) and extending to age 5 y (second 1000 d). Young children with adequate nutrition, nurturant caregiving, and opportunities for early learning have the best chances of thriving. Evidence from adoption, experimental, and quasi-experimental studies has shown that stunting prevention is sensitive during the first 1000 d, and sensitivity to child development interventions extends through the second 1000 d. Cognitive development responds to interventions post–1000 d with effect sizes that are inversely associated with initial age and length of program exposure. Integrated interventions need governance structures that support integrated policies and programming, with attention to training, supervision, and monitoring. The MDGs have been replaced by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with targets for the next 15 y. Achievement of the SDGs depends on children receiving adequate nutrition, nurturant caregiving, and learning opportunities from conception through age 5.

  4. On the integration of financial markets: How strong is the evidence from five international stock markets?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bentes, Sónia R.

    2015-07-01

    This paper examines the integration of financial markets using data from five international stock markets in the context of globalization. The theoretical basis of this study relies on the price theory and the Law of One Price, which was adjusted to the framework of financial markets. When price levels are nonstationary, cointegration and the error correction model constitute a powerful tool for the empirical examination of market integration. The error correction model provides a fully dynamic framework that allows to separating the long and the short run effects of the integration process. A dataset encompassing the daily stock price series of the PSI 20 (Portugal), IBEX 35 (Spain), FTSE 100 (UK), NIKKEI 225 (Japan) and SP 500 (US) indices from January 4th 1999 to September 19th 2014 is employed. The results highlight that these five stock markets are linked together by just one long-run relationship, although short-run movements are also present, which causes distinct deviations from the long-run equilibrium relationship. Endogeneity prevails in the system as a whole. While market integration in the sense of the Law of One Price holds, pairwise full price transmission has limited evidence. The results therefore show that stock market price movements are highly nonlinear and complex.

  5. Evident?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Plant, Peter

    2012-01-01

    Quality assurance and evidence in career guidance in Europe are often seen as self-evident approaches, but particular interests lie behind......Quality assurance and evidence in career guidance in Europe are often seen as self-evident approaches, but particular interests lie behind...

  6. Integrating Ontological Knowledge and Textual Evidence in Estimating Gene and Gene Product Similarity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sanfilippo, Antonio P.; Posse, Christian; Gopalan, Banu; Tratz, Stephen C.; Gregory, Michelle L.

    2006-06-08

    With the rising influence of the Gene On-tology, new approaches have emerged where the similarity between genes or gene products is obtained by comparing Gene Ontology code annotations associ-ated with them. So far, these approaches have solely relied on the knowledge en-coded in the Gene Ontology and the gene annotations associated with the Gene On-tology database. The goal of this paper is to demonstrate that improvements to these approaches can be obtained by integrating textual evidence extracted from relevant biomedical literature.

  7. International lessons in new methods for grading and integrating cost effectiveness evidence into clinical practice guidelines

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Antioch, Kathryn M; Drummond, Michael F; Niessen, Louis W

    2017-01-01

    Economic evidence is influential in health technology assessment world-wide. Clinical Practice Guidelines (CPG) can enable economists to include economic information on health care provision. Application of economic evidence in CPGs, and its integration into clinical practice and national decisio......-of-life, budget impact, cost-effective ratios, net benefits and disparities in access and outcomes. Priority setting remains essential and trade-off decisions between policy criteria can be based on MCDA, both in evidence based clinical medicine and in health planning....... that scores that checklist for grading studies, when assessing economic evidence. Cost-effectiveness Analysis (CEA) thresholds, opportunity cost and willingness-to-pay (WTP) are crucial issues for decision rules in CEA generally, including end-of-life therapies. Limitations of inter-rater reliability......, logistics, innovation price, price sensitivity, substitutes and complements, WTP, absenteeism and presentism. Supply issues may include economies of scale, efficiency changes, and return on investment. Involved equity and efficiency measures may include cost-of-illness, disease burden, quality...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocha, Mauricio; Iha, Koshun

    2016-07-01

    A biosphere stands for a set of biomes (regional biological communities) interacting in a materially closed (though energetically open) ecological system (CES). Earth's biosphere, the thin layer of life on the planet's surface, can be seen as a natural CES- where life "consumables" are regenerated/restored via biological, geological and chemical processes. In Life Sciences, artificial CESs- local ecosystems extracts with varying scales and degrees of closure, are considered convenient/representatives objects of study. For outer space, these concepts have been applied to the issue of life support- a significant consideration as long as distance from Earth increases. In the nineties, growing on the Russian expertise on biological life support, backed by a multidisciplinary science team, the famous Biosphere 2 appeared. That private project innovated, by assembling a set of Earth biomes samples- plus an organic ag one, inside a closed Mars base-like structure, next to 1.5 ha under glass, in Arizona, US. The crew of 8 inside completed their two years contract, though facing setbacks- the system failed, e.g., to produce enough food/air supplies. But their "failures"- if this word can be fairly applied to science endeavors, were as meaningful as their achievements for the future of life support systems (LSS) research. By this period, the Russians had accumulated experience in extended orbital stays, achieving biological outcomes inside their stations- e.g. complete wheat cycles. After reaching the Moon, the US administration decided to change national priorities, putting the space program as part of a "détente" policy, to relieve international tensions. Alongside the US space shuttle program, the Russians were invited to join the new International Space Station (ISS), bringing to that pragmatic project, also their physical/chemical LSS- top air/water regenerative technology at the time. Present US policy keeps the ISS operational, extending its service past its planned

  9. Rethinking the nature of fibrolamellar bone: an integrative biological revision of sauropod plexiform bone formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, Koen; Prondvai, Edina

    2014-02-01

    palaeohistological studies, we introduce new osteohistological terms as well as revise widely used but incorrect terminology. To infer the role of woven bone in the bone formation of fast-growing tetrapods, we review some aspects of the interrelationships between the vascularity of bone tissues, basal metabolic rate, body size and growth rate. By putting our findings into the context of osteogenesis, we provide a new model for the diametrical limb bone growth of sauropods and present new implications for the evolution of fast growth in vertebrates. Since biomechanical studies of bone tissues suggest that predominant collagen fibre orientation (CFO) is controlled by endogenous, functional and perhaps phylogenetic factors, the relationship between CFO and bone growth rate as defined by Amprino's rule, which has been the basis for the biological interpretation of several osteohistological features, must be revised. Our findings draw attention to the urgent need for revising widely accepted basic concepts of palaeohistological studies, and for a more integrative approach to bone formation, biomechanics and bone microstructural features of extant and extinct vertebrates to infer life history traits of long extinct, iconic animals like dinosaurs. © 2013 The Authors. Biological Reviews © 2013 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  10. Evidence-based educational pathway for the integration of first aid training in school curricula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Buck, Emmy; Van Remoortel, Hans; Dieltjens, Tessa; Verstraeten, Hans; Clarysse, Matthieu; Moens, Olaf; Vandekerckhove, Philippe

    2015-09-01

    "Calling for help, performing first aid and providing Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)" is part of the educational goals in secondary schools in Belgium (Flanders). However, for teachers it is not always clear at what age children can be taught which aspects of first aid. In addition, it is not clear what constitutes "performing first aid" and we strongly advocate that the first aid curriculum is broader than CPR training alone. To develop an evidence-based educational pathway to enable the integration of first aid into the school curriculum by defining the goals to be achieved for knowledge, skills and attitudes, for different age groups. Studies were identified through electronic databases research (The Cochrane Library, MEDLINE, Embase). We included studies on first aid education for children and adolescents up to 18 years old. A multidisciplinary expert panel formulated their practice experience and expert opinion and discussed the available evidence. We identified 5822 references and finally retained 30 studies (13 experimental and 17 observational studies), including studies concerning emergency call (7 studies), cardiopulmonary resuscitation (18 studies), AED (Automated External Defibrillator) use (6 studies), recovery position (5 studies), choking (2 studies), injuries (5 studies), and poisoning (2 studies). Recommendations (educational goals) were derived after carefully discussing the currently available evidence in the literature and balancing the skills and attitudes of children of different ages. An evidence-based educational pathway with educational goals concerning learning first aid for each age group was developed. This educational pathway can be used for the integration of first aid training in school curricula. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  11. Biological Evidence for Paradoxical Improvement of Psychiatric Disorder Symptoms by Addictive Drugs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Christian P; Kornhuber, Johannes

    2017-06-01

    Addiction biology has focused on the mechanisms of the positive and negative reinforcing actions of addictive drugs but neglected potential benefits. Two new studies provide the first insights into a neurobiology of psychoactive drug instrumentalization. This may help us design better models for addiction neuroscience and opens a new dimension for the development of personalized pharmacotherapy of drug addiction. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. A novel integration of three-dimensional electro-Fenton and biological activated carbon and its application in the advanced treatment of biologically pretreated Lurgi coal gasification wastewater.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Baolin; Han, Hongjun; Zhuang, Haifeng; Xu, Peng; Jia, Shengyong; Li, Kun

    2015-11-01

    A novel integrated process with three-dimensional electro-Fenton (3D EF) and biological activated carbon (BAC) was employed in advanced treatment of biologically pretreated Lurgi coal gasification wastewater. SAC-Fe (sludge deserved activated carbon from sewage and iron sludge) and SAC (sludge deserved activated carbon) were used in 3D EF as catalytic particle electrodes (CPEs) and in BAC as carriers respectively. Results indicated that 3D EF with SAC-Fe as CPEs represented excellent pollutants and COLOR removals as well as biodegradability improvement. The efficiency enhancement attributed to generating more H2O2 and OH. The integrated process exhibited efficient performance of COD, BOD5, total phenols, TOC, TN and COLOR removals at a much shorter retention time, with the corresponding concentrations in effluent of 31.18, 6.69, 4.29, 17.82, 13.88mg/L and <20 times, allowing discharge criteria to be met. The integrated system was efficient, cost-effective and ecological sustainable and could be a promising technology for engineering applications. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. CoreFlow: a computational platform for integration, analysis and modeling of complex biological data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasculescu, Adrian; Schoof, Erwin M; Creixell, Pau; Zheng, Yong; Olhovsky, Marina; Tian, Ruijun; So, Jonathan; Vanderlaan, Rachel D; Pawson, Tony; Linding, Rune; Colwill, Karen

    2014-04-04

    A major challenge in mass spectrometry and other large-scale applications is how to handle, integrate, and model the data that is produced. Given the speed at which technology advances and the need to keep pace with biological experiments, we designed a computational platform, CoreFlow, which provides programmers with a framework to manage data in real-time. It allows users to upload data into a relational database (MySQL), and to create custom scripts in high-level languages such as R, Python, or Perl for processing, correcting and modeling this data. CoreFlow organizes these scripts into project-specific pipelines, tracks interdependencies between related tasks, and enables the generation of summary reports as well as publication-quality images. As a result, the gap between experimental and computational components of a typical large-scale biology project is reduced, decreasing the time between data generation, analysis and manuscript writing. CoreFlow is being released to the scientific community as an open-sourced software package complete with proteomics-specific examples, which include corrections for incomplete isotopic labeling of peptides (SILAC) or arginine-to-proline conversion, and modeling of multiple/selected reaction monitoring (MRM/SRM) results. CoreFlow was purposely designed as an environment for programmers to rapidly perform data analysis. These analyses are assembled into project-specific workflows that are readily shared with biologists to guide the next stages of experimentation. Its simple yet powerful interface provides a structure where scripts can be written and tested virtually simultaneously to shorten the life cycle of code development for a particular task. The scripts are exposed at every step so that a user can quickly see the relationships between the data, the assumptions that have been made, and the manipulations that have been performed. Since the scripts use commonly available programming languages, they can easily be

  14. Integration of an innovative biological treatment with physical or chemical disinfection for wastewater reuse

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Sanctis, Marco; Del Moro, Guido; Levantesi, Caterina; Luprano, Maria Laura; Di Iaconi, Claudio

    2016-01-01

    In the present paper, the effectiveness of a Sequencing Batch Biofilter Granular Reactor (SBBGR) and its integration with different disinfection strategies (UV irradiation, peracetic acid) for producing an effluent suitable for agricultural use was evaluated. The plant treated raw domestic sewage, and its performances were evaluated in terms of the removal efficiency of a wide group of physical, chemical and microbiological parameters. The SBBGR resulted really efficient in removing suspended solids, COD and nitrogen with an average effluent concentration of 5, 32 and 10 mg/L, respectively. Lower removal efficiency was observed for phosphorus with an average concentration in the effluent of 3 mg/L. Plant effluent was also characterized by an average electrical conductivity and sodium adsorption ratio of 680 μS/cm and 2.9, respectively. Therefore, according to these gross parameters, the SBBGR effluent was conformed to the national standards required in Italy for agricultural reuse. Moreover, disinfection performances of the SBBGR was higher than that of conventional municipal wastewater treatment plants and met the quality criteria suggested by WHO (Escherichia coli < 1000 CFU/100 mL) for agricultural reuse. In particular, the biological treatment by SBBGR removed 3.8 ± 0.4 log units of Giardia lamblia, 2.8 ± 0.8 log units of E. coli, 2.5 ± 0.7 log units of total coliforms, 2.0 ± 0.3 log units of Clostridium perfringens, 2.0 ± 0.4 log units of Cryptosporidium parvum and 1.7 ± 0.7 log units of Somatic coliphages. The investigated disinfection processes (UV and peracetic acid) resulted very effective for total coliforms, E. coli and somatic coliphages. In particular, a UV radiation and peracetic acid doses of 40 mJ/cm"2 and 1 mg/L respectively reduced E. coli content in the effluent below the limit for agricultural reuse in Italy (10 CFU/100 mL). Conversely, they were both ineffective on C.perfringens spores. - Highlights: • SBBGR system showed high

  15. Integration of an innovative biological treatment with physical or chemical disinfection for wastewater reuse

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    De Sanctis, Marco, E-mail: marco.desanctis@ba.irsa.cnr.it [Water Research Institute, CNR, Via F. De Blasio 5, 70123 Bari (Italy); Del Moro, Guido [Water Research Institute, CNR, Via F. De Blasio 5, 70123 Bari (Italy); Levantesi, Caterina; Luprano, Maria Laura [Water Research Institute, CNR, Via Salaria Km 29.600, 00015 Monterotondo, RM (Italy); Di Iaconi, Claudio [Water Research Institute, CNR, Via F. De Blasio 5, 70123 Bari (Italy)

    2016-02-01

    In the present paper, the effectiveness of a Sequencing Batch Biofilter Granular Reactor (SBBGR) and its integration with different disinfection strategies (UV irradiation, peracetic acid) for producing an effluent suitable for agricultural use was evaluated. The plant treated raw domestic sewage, and its performances were evaluated in terms of the removal efficiency of a wide group of physical, chemical and microbiological parameters. The SBBGR resulted really efficient in removing suspended solids, COD and nitrogen with an average effluent concentration of 5, 32 and 10 mg/L, respectively. Lower removal efficiency was observed for phosphorus with an average concentration in the effluent of 3 mg/L. Plant effluent was also characterized by an average electrical conductivity and sodium adsorption ratio of 680 μS/cm and 2.9, respectively. Therefore, according to these gross parameters, the SBBGR effluent was conformed to the national standards required in Italy for agricultural reuse. Moreover, disinfection performances of the SBBGR was higher than that of conventional municipal wastewater treatment plants and met the quality criteria suggested by WHO (Escherichia coli < 1000 CFU/100 mL) for agricultural reuse. In particular, the biological treatment by SBBGR removed 3.8 ± 0.4 log units of Giardia lamblia, 2.8 ± 0.8 log units of E. coli, 2.5 ± 0.7 log units of total coliforms, 2.0 ± 0.3 log units of Clostridium perfringens, 2.0 ± 0.4 log units of Cryptosporidium parvum and 1.7 ± 0.7 log units of Somatic coliphages. The investigated disinfection processes (UV and peracetic acid) resulted very effective for total coliforms, E. coli and somatic coliphages. In particular, a UV radiation and peracetic acid doses of 40 mJ/cm{sup 2} and 1 mg/L respectively reduced E. coli content in the effluent below the limit for agricultural reuse in Italy (10 CFU/100 mL). Conversely, they were both ineffective on C.perfringens spores. - Highlights: • SBBGR system showed high

  16. Integration of an Evidence Base into a Probabilistic Risk Assessment Model. The Integrated Medical Model Database: An Organized Evidence Base for Assessing In-Flight Crew Health Risk and System Design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saile, Lynn; Lopez, Vilma; Bickham, Grandin; FreiredeCarvalho, Mary; Kerstman, Eric; Byrne, Vicky; Butler, Douglas; Myers, Jerry; Walton, Marlei

    2011-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the Integrated Medical Model (IMM) database, which is an organized evidence base for assessing in-flight crew health risk. The database is a relational database accessible to many people. The database quantifies the model inputs by a ranking based on the highest value of the data as Level of Evidence (LOE) and the quality of evidence (QOE) score that provides an assessment of the evidence base for each medical condition. The IMM evidence base has already been able to provide invaluable information for designers, and for other uses.

  17. A Conceptual Framework for Integration of Evidence-Based Design with Lighting Simulation Tools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anahita Davoodi

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The use of lighting simulation tools has been growing over the past years which has improved lighting analysis. While computer simulations have proven to be a viable tool for analyzing lighting in physical environments, they have difficulty in assessing the effects of light on occupant’s perception. Evidence-based design (EBD is a design method that is gaining traction in building design due to its strength in providing means to assess the effects of built environments on humans. The aim of this study was to develop a conceptual framework for integrating EBD with lighting simulation tools. Based on a literature review, it was investigated how EBD and lighting simulation can be combined to provide a holistic lighting performance evaluation method. The results show that they can mutually benefit from each other. EBD makes it possible to evaluate and/or improve performance metrics by utilizing user feedback. On the other hand, performance metrics can be used for a better description of evidence, and to analyze the effects of lighting with more details. The results also show that EBD can be used to evaluate light simulations to better understand when and how they should be performed. A framework is presented for integration of lighting simulation and EBD.

  18. Add-On Complementary Medicine in Cancer Care: Evidence in Literature and Experiences of Integration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elio Rossi

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: According to the literature an increasing number of cancer patients demand for complementary therapies during their disease. Research has demonstrated that some of these therapies are effective and safe as adjunctive treatments in specific symptoms of these patients. Methods: The aims of the paper are to review the main and recent papers of international literature on the effectiveness of complementary medicine (CM therapies on side effects of anti-cancer protocols and improvement in the quality of life of oncological patients, and to describe the integration of evidence-based acupuncture, herbal medicine and homeopathy treatments in Public Cancer Network of the region of Tuscany. Results: After the review of literature and the approval of a Regional Resolution, some CM will be introduced in Cancer Departments in Tuscany to additionally treat cancer-related symptoms and side effects of conventional cancer therapy: acupuncture for nausea and post-chemotherapy and post-surgery vomiting, pain, hot flashes of iatrogenic menopause, xerostomia; homeopathy for hot flashes of iatrogenic menopause and the side effects of radiotherapy; herbal medicine for cancer-related fatigue, nausea and vomiting, pain, mucositis, anxiety, and depression. Conclusions: The integration of evidence-based complementary treatments allows for an effective response to the demand coming from cancer patients and combines safety and equity of access in public health systems.

  19. Add-On Complementary Medicine in Cancer Care: Evidence in Literature and Experiences of Integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossi, Elio; Di Stefano, Mariella; Firenzuoli, Fabio; Monechi, Maria Valeria; Baccetti, Sonia

    2017-01-24

    Background : According to the literature an increasing number of cancer patients demand for complementary therapies during their disease. Research has demonstrated that some of these therapies are effective and safe as adjunctive treatments in specific symptoms of these patients. Methods : The aims of the paper are to review the main and recent papers of international literature on the effectiveness of complementary medicine (CM) therapies on side effects of anti-cancer protocols and improvement in the quality of life of oncological patients, and to describe the integration of evidence-based acupuncture, herbal medicine and homeopathy treatments in Public Cancer Network of the region of Tuscany. Results : After the review of literature and the approval of a Regional Resolution, some CM will be introduced in Cancer Departments in Tuscany to additionally treat cancer-related symptoms and side effects of conventional cancer therapy: acupuncture for nausea and post-chemotherapy and post-surgery vomiting, pain, hot flashes of iatrogenic menopause, xerostomia; homeopathy for hot flashes of iatrogenic menopause and the side effects of radiotherapy; herbal medicine for cancer-related fatigue, nausea and vomiting, pain, mucositis, anxiety, and depression. Conclusions : The integration of evidence-based complementary treatments allows for an effective response to the demand coming from cancer patients and combines safety and equity of access in public health systems.

  20. Development of Two Color Fluorescent Imager and Integrated Fluidic System for Nanosatellite Biology Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Diana Terri; Ricco, Antonio Joseph; Lera, Matthew P.; Timucin, Linda R.; Parra, Macarena P.

    2012-01-01

    Nanosatellites offer frequent, low-cost space access as secondary payloads on launches of larger conventional satellites. We summarize the payload science and technology of the Microsatellite in-situ Space Technologies (MisST) nanosatellite for conducting automated biological experiments. The payload (two fused 10-cm cubes) includes 1) an integrated fluidics system that maintains organism viability and supports growth and 2) a fixed-focus imager with fluorescence and scattered-light imaging capabilities. The payload monitors temperature, pressure and relative humidity, and actively controls temperature. C. elegans (nematode, 50 m diameter x 1 mm long) was selected as a model organism due to previous space science experience, its completely sequenced genome, size, hardiness, and the variety of strains available. Three strains were chosen: two green GFP-tagged strains and one red tdTomato-tagged strain that label intestinal, nerve, and pharyngeal cells, respectively. The integrated fluidics system includes bioanalytical and reservoir modules. The former consists of four 150 L culture wells and a 4x5 mm imaging zone the latter includes two 8 mL fluid reservoirs for reagent and waste storage. The fluidic system is fabricated using multilayer polymer rapid prototyping: laser cutting, precision machining, die cutting, and pressure-sensitive adhesives it also includes eight solenoid-operated valves and one mini peristaltic pump. Young larval-state (L2) nematodes are loaded in C. elegans Maintenance Media (CeMM) in the bioanalytical module during pre-launch assembly. By the time orbit is established, the worms have grown to sufficient density to be imaged and are fed fresh CeMM. The strains are pumped sequentially into the imaging area, imaged, then pumped into waste. Reagent storage utilizes polymer bags under slight pressure to prevent bubble formation in wells or channels. The optical system images green and red fluorescence bands by excitation with blue (473 nm peak

  1. Computing health quality measures using Informatics for Integrating Biology and the Bedside.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klann, Jeffrey G; Murphy, Shawn N

    2013-04-19

    The Health Quality Measures Format (HQMF) is a Health Level 7 (HL7) standard for expressing computable Clinical Quality Measures (CQMs). Creating tools to process HQMF queries in clinical databases will become increasingly important as the United States moves forward with its Health Information Technology Strategic Plan to Stages 2 and 3 of the Meaningful Use incentive program (MU2 and MU3). Informatics for Integrating Biology and the Bedside (i2b2) is one of the analytical databases used as part of the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC)'s Query Health platform to move toward this goal. Our goal is to integrate i2b2 with the Query Health HQMF architecture, to prepare for other HQMF use-cases (such as MU2 and MU3), and to articulate the functional overlap between i2b2 and HQMF. Therefore, we analyze the structure of HQMF, and then we apply this understanding to HQMF computation on the i2b2 clinical analytical database platform. Specifically, we develop a translator between two query languages, HQMF and i2b2, so that the i2b2 platform can compute HQMF queries. We use the HQMF structure of queries for aggregate reporting, which define clinical data elements and the temporal and logical relationships between them. We use the i2b2 XML format, which allows flexible querying of a complex clinical data repository in an easy-to-understand domain-specific language. The translator can represent nearly any i2b2-XML query as HQMF and execute in i2b2 nearly any HQMF query expressible in i2b2-XML. This translator is part of the freely available reference implementation of the QueryHealth initiative. We analyze limitations of the conversion and find it covers many, but not all, of the complex temporal and logical operators required by quality measures. HQMF is an expressive language for defining quality measures, and it will be important to understand and implement for CQM computation, in both meaningful use and population health. However, its current form might allow

  2. Innovative use of the integrative review to evaluate evidence of technology transformation in healthcare.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Andrew B; Merrill, Jacqueline A

    2015-12-01

    Healthcare is in a period significant transformational activity through the accelerated adoption of healthcare technologies, new reimbursement systems that emphasize shared savings and care coordination, and the common place use of mobile technologies by patients, providers, and others. The complexity of healthcare creates barriers to transformational activity and has the potential to inhibit the desired paths toward change envisioned by policymakers. Methods for understanding how change is occurring within this complex environment are important to the evaluation of delivery system reform and the role of technology in healthcare transformation. This study examines the use on an integrative review methodology to evaluate the healthcare literature for evidence of technology transformation in healthcare. The methodology integrates the evaluation of a broad set of literature with an established evaluative framework to develop a more complete understanding of a particular topic. We applied this methodology and the framework of punctuated equilibrium (PEq) to the analysis of the healthcare literature from 2004 to 2012 for evidence of technology transformation, a time during which technology was at the forefront of healthcare policy. The analysis demonstrated that the established PEq framework applied to the literature showed considerable potential for evaluating the progress of policies that encourage healthcare transformation. Significant inhibitors to change were identified through the integrative review and categorized into ten themes that describe the resistant structure of healthcare delivery: variations in the environment; market complexity; regulations; flawed risks and rewards; change theories; barriers; ethical considerations; competition and sustainability; environmental elements, and internal elements. We hypothesize that the resistant nature of the healthcare system described by this study creates barriers to the direct consumer involvement and engagement

  3. Biological therapies (immunomodulatory drugs), worsening of psoriasis and rebound effect: new evidence of similitude.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teixeira, Marcus Zulian

    2016-11-01

    Employing the secondary action or adaptative reaction of the organism as therapeutic response, homeopathy uses the treatment by similitude (similia similibus curentur) administering to sick individuals the medicines that caused similar symptoms in healthy individuals. Such homeostatic or paradoxical reaction of the organism is scientifically explained through the rebound effect of drugs, which cause worsening of symptoms after withdrawal of several palliative treatments. Despite promoting an improvement in psoriasis at the beginning of the treatment, modern biological therapies provoke worsening of the psoriasis (rebound psoriasis) after discontinuation of drugs. Exploratory qualitative review of the literature on the occurrence of the rebound effect with the use of immunomodulatory drugs [T-cell modulating agents and tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitors drugs] in the treatment of psoriasis. Several researches indicate the rebound effect as the mechanism of worsening of psoriasis with the use of efalizumab causing the suspension of its marketing authorization in 2009, in view of some severe cases. Other studies also have demonstrated the occurrence of rebound psoriasis with the use of alefacept, etanercept and infliximab. As well as studied in other classes of drugs, the rebound effect of biologic agents supports the principle of similitude (primary action of the drugs followed by secondary action and opposite of the organism). Copyright © 2016 The Faculty of Homeopathy. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. The in vivo structure of biological membranes and evidence for lipid domains

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nickels, Jonathan D. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States); Chatterjee, Sneha [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Stanley, Christopher B. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Qian, Shuo [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Cheng, Xiaolin [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States); Myles, Dean A. A. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Standaert, Robert F. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States); Elkins, James G. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States); Katsaras, John [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States); Lopez, Daniel [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States)

    2017-05-23

    Examining the fundamental structure and processes of living cells at the nanoscale poses a unique analytical challenge, as cells are dynamic, chemically diverse, and fragile. A case in point is the cell membrane, which is too small to be seen directly with optical microscopy and provides little observational contrast for other methods. As a consequence, nanoscale characterization of the membrane has been performed ex vivo or in the presence of exogenous labels used to enhance contrast and impart specificity. Here, we introduce an isotopic labeling strategy in the gram-positive bacterium Bacillus subtilis to investigate the nanoscale structure and organization of its plasma membrane in vivo. Through genetic and chemical manipulation of the organism, we labeled the cell and its membrane independently with specific amounts of hydrogen (H) and deuterium (D). These isotopes have different neutron scattering properties without altering the chemical composition of the cells. From neutron scattering spectra, we confirmed that the B. subtilis cell membrane is lamellar and determined that its average hydrophobic thickness is 24.3 ± 0.9 Ångstroms (Å). Furthermore, by creating neutron contrast within the plane of the membrane using a mixture of H- and D-fatty acids, we detected lateral features smaller than 40 nm that are consistent with the notion of lipid rafts. These experiments—performed under biologically relevant conditions—answer long-standing questions in membrane biology and illustrate a fundamentally new approach for systematic in vivo investigations of cell membrane structure.

  5. Chitosan solutions as injectable systems for dermal filler applications: Rheological characterization and biological evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halimi, C; Montembault, A; Guerry, A; Delair, T; Viguier, E; Fulchiron, R; David, L

    2015-01-01

    A new generation of dermal filler for wrinkle filler based on chitosan was compared to current hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers by using a new rheological performance criterion based on viscosity during injection related to Newtonian viscosity. In addition an in vivo evaluation was performed for preclinical evidence of chitosan use as dermal filler. In this way, biocompatibility and dermis reconstruction was evaluated on a pig model.

  6. Promoting convergence: The integrated graduate program in physical and engineering biology at Yale University, a new model for graduate education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noble, Dorottya B; Mochrie, Simon G J; O'Hern, Corey S; Pollard, Thomas D; Regan, Lynne

    2016-11-12

    In 2008, we established the Integrated Graduate Program in Physical and Engineering Biology (IGPPEB) at Yale University. Our goal was to create a comprehensive graduate program to train a new generation of scientists who possess a sophisticated understanding of biology and who are capable of applying physical and quantitative methodologies to solve biological problems. Here we describe the framework of the training program, report on its effectiveness, and also share the insights we gained during its development and implementation. The program features co-teaching by faculty with complementary specializations, student peer learning, and novel hands-on courses that facilitate the seamless blending of interdisciplinary research and teaching. It also incorporates enrichment activities to improve communication skills, engage students in science outreach, and foster a cohesive program cohort, all of which promote the development of transferable skills applicable in a variety of careers. The curriculum of the graduate program is integrated with the curricular requirements of several Ph.D.-granting home programs in the physical, engineering, and biological sciences. Moreover, the wide-ranging recruiting activities of the IGPPEB serve to enhance the quality and diversity of students entering graduate school at Yale. We also discuss some of the challenges we encountered in establishing and optimizing the program, and describe the institution-level changes that were catalyzed by the introduction of the new graduate program. The goal of this article is to serve as both an inspiration and as a practical "how to" manual for those who seek to establish similar programs at their own institutions. © 2016 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 44(6):537-549, 2016. © 2016 The Authors Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  7. Asthma and obesity in children: current evidence and potential systems biology approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frey, U; Latzin, P; Usemann, J; Maccora, J; Zumsteg, U; Kriemler, S

    2015-01-01

    Both obesity and asthma are highly prevalent, complex diseases modified by multiple factors. Genetic, developmental, lung mechanical, immunological and behavioural factors have all been suggested as playing a causal role between the two entities; however, their complex mechanistic interactions are still poorly understood and evidence of causality in children remains scant. Equally lacking is evidence of effective treatment strategies, despite the fact that imbalances at vulnerable phases in childhood can impact long-term health. This review is targeted at both clinicians frequently faced with the dilemma of how to investigate and treat the obese asthmatic child and researchers interested in the topic. Highlighting the breadth of the spectrum of factors involved, this review collates evidence regarding the investigation and treatment of asthma in obese children, particularly in comparison with current approaches in 'difficult-to-treat' childhood asthma. Finally, the authors propose hypotheses for future research from a systems-based perspective. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Integrating Nutrition and Child Development Interventions: Scientific Basis, Evidence of Impact, and Implementation Considerations123

    Science.gov (United States)

    Black, Maureen M; Pérez-Escamilla, Rafael; Fernandez Rao, Sylvia

    2015-01-01

    The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have contributed to unprecedented reductions in poverty and improvement in the lives of millions of men, women, and children in low- and middle-income countries. Yet, hundreds of millions of children under 5 y of age are not reaching their developmental potential. This article reviews the scientific basis for early childhood nutrition and child development interventions, the impact of integrated interventions on children’s linear growth and cognitive development, and implementation strategies for integrated nutrition and child development programs. Advances in brain science have documented that the origins of adult health and well-being are grounded in early childhood, from conception through age 24 mo (first 1000 d) and extending to age 5 y (second 1000 d). Young children with adequate nutrition, nurturant caregiving, and opportunities for early learning have the best chances of thriving. Evidence from adoption, experimental, and quasi-experimental studies has shown that stunting prevention is sensitive during the first 1000 d, and sensitivity to child development interventions extends through the second 1000 d. Cognitive development responds to interventions post–1000 d with effect sizes that are inversely associated with initial age and length of program exposure. Integrated interventions need governance structures that support integrated policies and programming, with attention to training, supervision, and monitoring. The MDGs have been replaced by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with targets for the next 15 y. Achievement of the SDGs depends on children receiving adequate nutrition, nurturant caregiving, and learning opportunities from conception through age 5. PMID:26875208

  9. Evolving Evidence for the Value of Neuroimaging Methods and Biological Markers in Subjects Categorized with Subjective Cognitive Decline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lista, Simone; Molinuevo, Jose L; Cavedo, Enrica; Rami, Lorena; Amouyel, Philippe; Teipel, Stefan J; Garaci, Francesco; Toschi, Nicola; Habert, Marie-Odile; Blennow, Kaj; Zetterberg, Henrik; O'Bryant, Sid E; Johnson, Leigh; Galluzzi, Samantha; Bokde, Arun L W; Broich, Karl; Herholz, Karl; Bakardjian, Hovagim; Dubois, Bruno; Jessen, Frank; Carrillo, Maria C; Aisen, Paul S; Hampel, Harald

    2015-09-24

    There is evolving evidence that individuals categorized with subjective cognitive decline (SCD) are potentially at higher risk for developing objective and progressive cognitive impairment compared to cognitively healthy individuals without apparent subjective complaints. Interestingly, SCD, during advancing preclinical Alzheimer's disease (AD), may denote very early, subtle cognitive decline that cannot be identified using established standardized tests of cognitive performance. The substantial heterogeneity of existing SCD-related research data has led the Subjective Cognitive Decline Initiative (SCD-I) to accomplish an international consensus on the definition of a conceptual research framework on SCD in preclinical AD. In the area of biological markers, the cerebrospinal fluid signature of AD has been reported to be more prevalent in subjects with SCD compared to healthy controls; moreover, there is a pronounced atrophy, as demonstrated by magnetic resonance imaging, and an increased hypometabolism, as revealed by positron emission tomography, in characteristic brain regions affected by AD. In addition, SCD individuals carrying an apolipoprotein ɛ4 allele are more likely to display AD-phenotypic alterations. The urgent requirement to detect and diagnose AD as early as possible has led to the critical examination of the diagnostic power of biological markers, neurophysiology, and neuroimaging methods for AD-related risk and clinical progression in individuals defined with SCD. Observational studies on the predictive value of SCD for developing AD may potentially be of practical value, and an evidence-based, validated, qualified, and fully operationalized concept may inform clinical diagnostic practice and guide earlier designs in future therapy trials.

  10. Anticholinergic drugs and negative outcomes in the older population: from biological plausibility to clinical evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collamati, Agnese; Martone, Anna Maria; Poscia, Andrea; Brandi, Vincenzo; Celi, Michela; Marzetti, Emanuele; Cherubini, Antonio; Landi, Francesco

    2016-02-01

    The use of medication with anticholinergic properties is widespread among older subjects. Many drugs of common use such as antispasmodics, bronchodilators, antiarrhythmics, antihistamines, anti-hypertensive drugs, antiparkinson agents, skeletal muscle relaxants, and psychotropic drugs have been demonstrated to have an anticholinergic activity. The most frequent adverse effects are dry mouth, nausea, vomiting, constipation, abdominal pain, urinary retention, blurred vision, tachycardia and neurologic impairment such as confusion, agitation and coma. A growing evidence from experimental studies and clinical observations suggests that drugs with anticholinergic properties can cause physical and mental impairment in the elderly population. However, the morbidity and management issues associated with unwanted anticholinergic activity are underestimated and frequently overlooked. Moreover, their possible relation with specific negative outcome in the elderly population is still not firmly established. The aim of the present review was to evaluate the relationship between the use of drugs with anticholinergic activity and negative outcomes in older persons. We searched PubMed and Cochrane combining the search terms "anticholinergic", "delirium", "cognitive impairment", "falls", "mortality" and "discontinuation". Medicines with anticholinergic properties may increase the risks of functional and cognitive decline, morbidity, institutionalization and mortality in older people. However, such evidences are still not conclusive probably due to possible confounding factors. In particular, more studies are needed to investigate the effects of discontinuation of drug with anticholinergic properties. Overall, minimizing anticholinergic burden should always be encouraged in clinical practice to improve short-term memory, confusion and delirium, quality of life and daily functioning.

  11. EVALUATING THE ECOLOGICAL RESILIENT DRIVEN PERFORMANCE OF A TROPICAL WASTE STABILIZATION POND SYSTEM USING ECOLOGICAL SIGNATURE OF BIOLOGICAL INTEGRITY

    OpenAIRE

    Susmita Lahiri Ganguly; Dipanwita Sarkar Paria; B. B. Jana

    2015-01-01

    Using ecological signature of biological integrity as a measure of performance, the reclamation efficiency of waste stabilization ponds was evaluated over a period of four years in a tropical sewage treatment plant – cum fish culture consisting of two anaerobic, two facultative and four maturation ponds located serially across the sewage effluent gradient. The four maturation ponds were used for batch culture of fish. Samples of surface and bottom water as well as surface sediment were collec...

  12. Evidence of pervasive biologically functional secondary structures within the genomes of eukaryotic single-stranded DNA viruses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muhire, Brejnev Muhizi; Golden, Michael; Murrell, Ben; Lefeuvre, Pierre; Lett, Jean-Michel; Gray, Alistair; Poon, Art Y F; Ngandu, Nobubelo Kwanele; Semegni, Yves; Tanov, Emil Pavlov; Monjane, Adérito Luis; Harkins, Gordon William; Varsani, Arvind; Shepherd, Dionne Natalie; Martin, Darren Patrick

    2014-02-01

    Single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) viruses have genomes that are potentially capable of forming complex secondary structures through Watson-Crick base pairing between their constituent nucleotides. A few of the structural elements formed by such base pairings are, in fact, known to have important functions during the replication of many ssDNA viruses. Unknown, however, are (i) whether numerous additional ssDNA virus genomic structural elements predicted to exist by computational DNA folding methods actually exist and (ii) whether those structures that do exist have any biological relevance. We therefore computationally inferred lists of the most evolutionarily conserved structures within a diverse selection of animal- and plant-infecting ssDNA viruses drawn from the families Circoviridae, Anelloviridae, Parvoviridae, Nanoviridae, and Geminiviridae and analyzed these for evidence of natural selection favoring the maintenance of these structures. While we find evidence that is consistent with purifying selection being stronger at nucleotide sites that are predicted to be base paired than at sites predicted to be unpaired, we also find strong associations between sites that are predicted to pair with one another and site pairs that are apparently coevolving in a complementary fashion. Collectively, these results indicate that natural selection actively preserves much of the pervasive secondary structure that is evident within eukaryote-infecting ssDNA virus genomes and, therefore, that much of this structure is biologically functional. Lastly, we provide examples of various highly conserved but completely uncharacterized structural elements that likely have important functions within some of the ssDNA virus genomes analyzed here.

  13. Evaluating the informatics for integrating biology and the bedside system for clinical research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meystre Stéphane M

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Selecting patient cohorts is a critical, iterative, and often time-consuming aspect of studies involving human subjects; informatics tools for helping streamline the process have been identified as important infrastructure components for enabling clinical and translational research. We describe the evaluation of a free and open source cohort selection tool from the Informatics for Integrating Biology and the Bedside (i2b2 group: the i2b2 hive. Methods Our evaluation included the usability and functionality of the i2b2 hive using several real world examples of research data requests received electronically at the University of Utah Health Sciences Center between 2006 - 2008. The hive server component and the visual query tool application were evaluated for their suitability as a cohort selection tool on the basis of the types of data elements requested, as well as the effort required to fulfill each research data request using the i2b2 hive alone. Results We found the i2b2 hive to be suitable for obtaining estimates of cohort sizes and generating research cohorts based on simple inclusion/exclusion criteria, which consisted of about 44% of the clinical research data requests sampled at our institution. Data requests that relied on post-coordinated clinical concepts, aggregate values of clinical findings, or temporal conditions in their inclusion/exclusion criteria could not be fulfilled using the i2b2 hive alone, and required one or more intermediate data steps in the form of pre- or post-processing, modifications to the hive metadata, etc. Conclusion The i2b2 hive was found to be a useful cohort-selection tool for fulfilling common types of requests for research data, and especially in the estimation of initial cohort sizes. For another institution that might want to use the i2b2 hive for clinical research, we recommend that the institution would need to have structured, coded clinical data and metadata available that can be

  14. Mission and Sustainability of Informatics for Integrating Biology and the Bedside (i2b2).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Shawn; Wilcox, Adam

    2014-01-01

    A visible example of a successfully disseminated research project in the healthcare space is Informatics for Integrating Biology and the Bedside, or i2b2. The project serves to provide the software that can allow a researcher to do direct, self-serve queries against the electronic healthcare data form a hospital. The goals of these queries are to find cohorts of patients that fit specific profiles, while providing for patient privacy and discretion. Sustaining this resource and keeping its direction has always been a challenge, but ever more so as the ten year National Centers for Biomedical Computing (NCBCs) sunset their funding. Building on the i2b2 structures has helped the dissemination plans for grants leveraging it because it is a disseminated national resource. While this has not directly increased the support of i2b2 internally, it has increased the ability of institutions to leverage the resource and generally leads to increased institutional support. The successful development, use, and dissemination i2b2 has been significant in clinical research and informatics. Its evolution has been from a local research data infrastructure to one disseminated more broadly than any other product of the National Centers for Biomedical Computing, and an infrastructure spawning larger investments than were originally used to create it. Throughout this, there were two main lessons about the benefits of dissemination: that people have great creativity in utilizing a resource in different ways and that broader system use can make the system more robust. One option for long-term sustainability of the central authority would be to translate the function to an industry partner. Another option currently being pursued is to create a foundation that would be a central authority for the project. Over the past 10 years, i2b2 has risen to be an important staple in the toolkit of health care researchers. There are now over 110 hospitals that use i2b2 for research. This open

  15. Using dual classifications in the development of avian wetland indices of biological integrity for wetlands in West Virginia, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veselka, Walter; Anderson, James T; Kordek, Walter S

    2010-05-01

    Considerable resources are being used to develop and implement bioassessment methods for wetlands to ensure that "biological integrity" is maintained under the United States Clean Water Act. Previous research has demonstrated that avian composition is susceptible to human impairments at multiple spatial scales. Using a site-specific disturbance gradient, we built avian wetland indices of biological integrity (AW-IBI) specific to two wetland classification schemes, one based on vegetative structure and the other based on the wetland's position in the landscape and sources of water. The resulting class-specific AW-IBI was comprised of one to four metrics that varied in their sensitivity to the disturbance gradient. Some of these metrics were specific to only one of the classification schemes, whereas others could discriminate varying levels of disturbance regardless of classification scheme. Overall, all of the derived biological indices specific to the vegetative structure-based classes of wetlands had a significant relation with the disturbance gradient; however, the biological index derived for floodplain wetlands exhibited a more consistent response to a local disturbance gradient. We suspect that the consistency of this response is due to the inherent nature of the connectivity of available habitat in floodplain wetlands.

  16. Using two classification schemes to develop vegetation indices of biological integrity for wetlands in West Virginia, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veselka, Walter; Rentch, James S; Grafton, William N; Kordek, Walter S; Anderson, James T

    2010-11-01

    Bioassessment methods for wetlands, and other bodies of water, have been developed worldwide to measure and quantify changes in "biological integrity." These assessments are based on a classification system, meant to ensure appropriate comparisons between wetland types. Using a local site-specific disturbance gradient, we built vegetation indices of biological integrity (Veg-IBIs) based on two commonly used wetland classification systems in the USA: One based on vegetative structure and the other based on a wetland's position in a landscape and sources of water. The resulting class-specific Veg-IBIs were comprised of 1-5 metrics that varied in their sensitivity to the disturbance gradient (R2=0.14-0.65). Moreover, the sensitivity to the disturbance gradient increased as metrics from each of the two classification schemes were combined (added). Using this information to monitor natural and created wetlands will help natural resource managers track changes in biological integrity of wetlands in response to anthropogenic disturbance and allows the use of vegetative communities to set ecological performance standards for mitigation banks.

  17. Discovery biology of neuropsychiatric syndromes (DBNS): a center for integrating clinical medicine and basic science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viswanath, Biju; Rao, Naren P; Narayanaswamy, Janardhanan C; Sivakumar, Palanimuthu T; Kandasamy, Arun; Kesavan, Muralidharan; Mehta, Urvakhsh Meherwan; Venkatasubramanian, Ganesan; John, John P; Mukherjee, Odity; Purushottam, Meera; Kannan, Ramakrishnan; Mehta, Bhupesh; Kandavel, Thennarasu; Binukumar, B; Saini, Jitender; Jayarajan, Deepak; Shyamsundar, A; Moirangthem, Sydney; Vijay Kumar, K G; Thirthalli, Jagadisha; Chandra, Prabha S; Gangadhar, Bangalore N; Murthy, Pratima; Panicker, Mitradas M; Bhalla, Upinder S; Chattarji, Sumantra; Benegal, Vivek; Varghese, Mathew; Reddy, Janardhan Y C; Raghu, Padinjat; Rao, Mahendra; Jain, Sanjeev

    2018-04-18

    There is emerging evidence that there are shared genetic, environmental and developmental risk factors in psychiatry, that cut across traditional diagnostic boundaries. With this background, the Discovery biology of neuropsychiatric syndromes (DBNS) proposes to recruit patients from five different syndromes (schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, Alzheimer's dementia and substance use disorders), identify those with multiple affected relatives, and invite these families to participate in this study. The families will be assessed: 1) To compare neuro-endophenotype measures between patients, first degree relatives (FDR) and healthy controls., 2) To identify cellular phenotypes which differentiate the groups., 3) To examine the longitudinal course of neuro-endophenotype measures., 4) To identify measures which correlate with outcome, and 5) To create a unified digital database and biorepository. The identification of the index participants will occur at well-established specialty clinics. The selected individuals will have a strong family history (with at least another affected FDR) of mental illness. We will also recruit healthy controls without family history of such illness. All recruited individuals (N = 4500) will undergo brief clinical assessments and a blood sample will be drawn for isolation of DNA and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). From among this set, a subset of 1500 individuals (300 families and 300 controls) will be assessed on several additional assessments [detailed clinical assessments, endophenotype measures (neuroimaging- structural and functional, neuropsychology, psychophysics-electroencephalography, functional near infrared spectroscopy, eye movement tracking)], with the intention of conducting repeated measurements every alternate year. PBMCs from this set will be used to generate lymphoblastoid cell lines, and a subset of these would be converted to induced pluripotent stem cell lines and also undergo

  18. Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Depression: Scientific Evidence and Biological Mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuseppe Grosso

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The changing of omega-6/omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA in the food supply of Western societies occurred over the last 150 years is thought to promote the pathogenesis of many inflammatory-related diseases, including depressive disorders. Several epidemiological studies reported a significant inverse correlation between intake of oily fish and depression or bipolar disorders. Studies conducted specifically on the association between omega-3 intake and depression reported contrasting results, suggesting that the preventive role of omega-3 PUFA may depend also on other factors, such as overall diet quality and the social environment. Accordingly, tertiary prevention with omega-3 PUFA supplement in depressed patients has reached greater effectiveness during the last recent years, although definitive statements on their use in depression therapy cannot be yet freely asserted. Among the biological properties of omega-3 PUFA, their anti-inflammatory effects and their important role on the structural changing of the brain should be taken into account to better understand the possible pathway through which they can be effective both in preventing or treating depression. However, the problem of how to correct the inadequate supply of omega-3 PUFA in the Westernized countries’ diet is a priority in order to set food and health policies and also dietary recommendations for individuals and population groups.

  19. Facilitating Effects of Emotion on the Perception of Biological Motion: Evidence for a Happiness Superiority Effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hannah; Kim, Jejoong

    2017-06-01

    It has been reported that visual perception can be influenced not only by the physical features of a stimulus but also by the emotional valence of the stimulus, even without explicit emotion recognition. Some previous studies reported an anger superiority effect while others found a happiness superiority effect during visual perception. It thus remains unclear as to which emotion is more influential. In the present study, we conducted two experiments using biological motion (BM) stimuli to examine whether emotional valence of the stimuli would affect BM perception; and if so, whether a specific type of emotion is associated with a superiority effect. Point-light walkers with three emotion types (anger, happiness, and neutral) were used, and the threshold to detect BM within noise was measured in Experiment 1. Participants showed higher performance in detecting happy walkers compared with the angry and neutral walkers. Follow-up motion velocity analysis revealed that physical difference among the stimuli was not the main factor causing the effect. The results of the emotion recognition task in Experiment 2 also showed a happiness superiority effect, as in Experiment 1. These results show that emotional valence (happiness) of the stimuli can facilitate the processing of BM.

  20. Archaeological, radiological, and biological evidence offer insight into Inca child sacrifice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Andrew S; Brown, Emma L; Villa, Chiara; Lynnerup, Niels; Healey, Andrew; Ceruti, Maria Constanza; Reinhard, Johan; Previgliano, Carlos H; Araoz, Facundo Arias; Diez, Josefina Gonzalez; Taylor, Timothy

    2013-08-13

    Examination of three frozen bodies, a 13-y-old girl and a girl and boy aged 4 to 5 y, separately entombed near the Andean summit of Volcán Llullaillaco, Argentina, sheds new light on human sacrifice as a central part of the Imperial Inca capacocha rite, described by chroniclers writing after the Spanish conquest. The high-resolution diachronic data presented here, obtained directly from scalp hair, implies escalating coca and alcohol ingestion in the lead-up to death. These data, combined with archaeological and radiological evidence, deepen our understanding of the circumstances and context of final placement on the mountain top. We argue that the individuals were treated differently according to their age, status, and ritual role. Finally, we relate our findings to questions of consent, coercion, and/or compliance, and the controversial issues of ideological justification and strategies of social control and political legitimation pursued by the expansionist Inca state before European contact.

  1. The 'antisocial' person: an insight in to biology, classification and current evidence on treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajapakse Senaka

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background This review analyses and summarises the recent advances in understanding the neurobiology of violence and empathy, taxonomical issues on defining personality disorders characterised by disregard for social norms, evidence for efficacy of different treatment modalities and ethical implications in defining 'at-risk' individuals for preventive interventions. Methods PubMed was searched with the keywords 'antisocial personality disorder', 'dissocial personality disorder' and 'psychopathy'. The search was limited to articles published in English over the last 10 years (1999 to 2009 Results Both diagnostic manuals used in modern psychiatry, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual published by the American Psychiatric Association and the International Classification of Diseases published by the World Health Organization, identify a personality disorder sharing similar traits. It is termed antisocial personality disorder in the diagnostic and statistical manual and dissocial personality disorder in the International Classification of Diseases. However, some authors query the ability of the existing manuals to identify a special category termed 'psychopathy', which in their opinion deserves special attention. On treatment-related issues, many psychological and behavioural therapies have shown success rates ranging from 25% to 62% in different cohorts. Multisystemic therapy and cognitive behaviour therapy have been proven efficacious in many trials. There is no substantial evidence for the efficacy of pharmacological therapy. Currently, the emphasis is on early identification and prevention of antisocial behaviour despite the ethical implications of defining at-risk children. Conclusions Further research is needed in the areas of neuroendocrinological associations of violent behaviour, taxonomic existence of psychopathy and efficacy of treatment modalities.

  2. Integrative Chemical-Biological Read-Across Approach for Chemical Hazard Classification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Low, Yen; Sedykh, Alexander; Fourches, Denis; Golbraikh, Alexander; Whelan, Maurice; Rusyn, Ivan; Tropsha, Alexander

    2013-01-01

    Traditional read-across approaches typically rely on the chemical similarity principle to predict chemical toxicity; however, the accuracy of such predictions is often inadequate due to the underlying complex mechanisms of toxicity. Here we report on the development of a hazard classification and visualization method that draws upon both chemical structural similarity and comparisons of biological responses to chemicals measured in multiple short-term assays (”biological” similarity). The Chemical-Biological Read-Across (CBRA) approach infers each compound's toxicity from those of both chemical and biological analogs whose similarities are determined by the Tanimoto coefficient. Classification accuracy of CBRA was compared to that of classical RA and other methods using chemical descriptors alone, or in combination with biological data. Different types of adverse effects (hepatotoxicity, hepatocarcinogenicity, mutagenicity, and acute lethality) were classified using several biological data types (gene expression profiling and cytotoxicity screening). CBRA-based hazard classification exhibited consistently high external classification accuracy and applicability to diverse chemicals. Transparency of the CBRA approach is aided by the use of radial plots that show the relative contribution of analogous chemical and biological neighbors. Identification of both chemical and biological features that give rise to the high accuracy of CBRA-based toxicity prediction facilitates mechanistic interpretation of the models. PMID:23848138

  3. An "Evidence-Based" Professional Development Program for Physics Teachers Focusing on Knowledge Integration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, Hana

    This dissertation is concerned with the design and study of an evidence-based approach to the professional development of high-school physics teachers responding to the need to develop effective continuing professional development programs (CPD) in domains that require genuine changes in teachers' views, knowledge, and practice. The goals of the thesis were to design an evidence-based model for the CPD program, to implement it with teachers, and to study its influence on teachers' knowledge, views, and practice, as well as its impact on students' learning. The program was developed in three consecutive versions: a pilot, first, and second versions. Based on the pilot version (that was not part of this study), we developed the first version of the program in which we studied difficulties in employing the evidence-based and blended-learning approaches. According to our findings, we modified the strategies for enacting these approaches in the second version of the program. The influence of the program on the teachers and students was studied during the enactment of the second version of the program. The model implemented in the second version of the program was characterized by four main design principles: 1. The KI and evidence aspects are acquired simultaneously in an integrated manner. 2. The guidance of the teachers follows the principles of cognitive apprenticeship both in the evidence and the KI aspects. 3. The teachers experience the innovative activities as learners. 4. The program promotes continuity of teachers' learning through a structured "blended learning" approach. The results of our study show that this version of the program achieved its goals; throughout the program the teachers progressed in their knowledge, views, and practice concerning the knowledge integration, and in the evidence and learner-centered aspects. The results also indicated that students improved their knowledge of physics and knowledge integration skills that were developed

  4. Integrating microfinance and health strategies: examining the evidence to inform policy and practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leatherman, Sheila; Metcalfe, Marcia; Geissler, Kimberley; Dunford, Christopher

    2012-03-01

    Single solutions continue to be inadequate in confronting the prevalent problems of poverty, ill health and insufficient health system capacity worldwide. The poor need access to an integrated set of financial and health services to have income security and better health. Over 3500 microfinance institutions (MFIs) provide microcredit and financial services to more than 155 million households worldwide. Conservative estimates indicate that at least 34 million of these households are very poor by the definition in the Millennium Development Goals, representing around 170 million people, many in remote areas beyond the reach of health agencies, both private and governmental. A small but increasing number of MFIs offer health-related services, such as education, clinical care, community health workers, health-financing and linkages to public and private health providers. Multiple studies indicate the effectiveness of microfinance and its impact on poverty. A small but growing number of studies also attempt to show that MFIs are capable of contributing to health improvement by increasing knowledge that leads to behavioural changes, and by enhancing access to health services through addressing financial, geographic and other barriers. While these studies are of uneven quality, they indicate positive health benefits in diverse areas such as maternal and child health, malaria and other infectious disease, and domestic violence. While more rigorous research is needed to inform policy and guide programme implementation to integrate microfinance and health interventions that can reliably enhance the well-being of the poor, there is useful evidence to support the design and delivery of integrated programmes now. Worldwide, current public health programmes and health systems are proving to be inadequate to meet population needs. The microfinance sector offers an underutilized opportunity for delivery of health-related services to many hard-to-reach populations.

  5. Dogs Evaluate Threatening Facial Expressions by Their Biological Validity--Evidence from Gazing Patterns.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanni Somppi

    Full Text Available Appropriate response to companions' emotional signals is important for all social creatures. The emotional expressions of humans and non-human animals have analogies in their form and function, suggesting shared evolutionary roots, but very little is known about how animals other than primates view and process facial expressions. In primates, threat-related facial expressions evoke exceptional viewing patterns compared with neutral or positive stimuli. Here, we explore if domestic dogs (Canis familiaris have such an attentional bias toward threatening social stimuli and whether observed emotional expressions affect dogs' gaze fixation distribution among the facial features (eyes, midface and mouth. We recorded the voluntary eye gaze of 31 domestic dogs during viewing of facial photographs of humans and dogs with three emotional expressions (threatening, pleasant and neutral. We found that dogs' gaze fixations spread systematically among facial features. The distribution of fixations was altered by the seen expression, but eyes were the most probable targets of the first fixations and gathered longer looking durations than mouth regardless of the viewed expression. The examination of the inner facial features as a whole revealed more pronounced scanning differences among expressions. This suggests that dogs do not base their perception of facial expressions on the viewing of single structures, but the interpretation of the composition formed by eyes, midface and mouth. Dogs evaluated social threat rapidly and this evaluation led to attentional bias, which was dependent on the depicted species: threatening conspecifics' faces evoked heightened attention but threatening human faces instead an avoidance response. We propose that threatening signals carrying differential biological validity are processed via distinctive neurocognitive pathways. Both of these mechanisms may have an adaptive significance for domestic dogs. The findings provide a novel

  6. Evidence that DNA excision-repair in xeroderma pigmentosum group A is limited but biologically significant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hull, D.R.; Kantor, G.J.

    1983-01-01

    The loss of pyrimidine dimers in nondividing populations of an excision-repair deficient xeroderma pigmentosum group. A strain (XP12BE) was measured throughout long periods (up to 5 months) following exposure to low doses of ultraviolet light (UV, 254 nm) using a UV endonuclease-alkaline sedimentation assay. Excision of about 90% of the dimers induced by 1 J/m 2 occurred during the first 50 days. The rate curve has some similarities with that of normal excision-repair proficient cultures that may not be coincidental. Rate curves for both XP12BE and normal cultures are characterized by a fast and slow component, with both rate constants for the XP12BE cultures (0.15 day -1 and 0.025 day -1 ) a factor of 10 smaller than those observed for the respective components of normal cell cultures. The slow components for both XP12BE and normal cultures extrapolate to about 30% of the initial number of dimers. No further excision was detected throughout an additional 90-day period even though the cultures were capable of excision-repair of other newly-introduced pyrimidine dimers. We conclude that nondividing XP12BE cells in addition to having a slower repair rate, cannot repair some of the UV-induced DNA damage. The repair in XP12BE is shown to have biological significance as detected by a cell-survival assay and dose-fractionation techniques. Nondividing XP12BE cells are more resistant to UV when irradiated chronically than when irradiated acutely with the same total dose. (orig.)

  7. Using Variable Precision Rough Set for Selection and Classification of Biological Knowledge Integrated in DNA Gene Expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Calvo-Dmgz D.

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available DNA microarrays have contributed to the exponential growth of genomic and experimental data in the last decade. This large amount of gene expression data has been used by researchers seeking diagnosis of diseases like cancer using machine learning methods. In turn, explicit biological knowledge about gene functions has also grown tremendously over the last decade. This work integrates explicit biological knowledge, provided as gene sets, into the classication process by means of Variable Precision Rough Set Theory (VPRS. The proposed model is able to highlight which part of the provided biological knowledge has been important for classification. This paper presents a novel model for microarray data classification which is able to incorporate prior biological knowledge in the form of gene sets. Based on this knowledge, we transform the input microarray data into supergenes, and then we apply rough set theory to select the most promising supergenes and to derive a set of easy interpretable classification rules. The proposed model is evaluated over three breast cancer microarrays datasets obtaining successful results compared to classical classification techniques. The experimental results shows that there are not significat differences between our model and classical techniques but it is able to provide a biological-interpretable explanation of how it classifies new samples.

  8. Integrative systems and synthetic biology of cell-matrix adhesion sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zamir, Eli

    2016-09-02

    The complexity of cell-matrix adhesion convolves its roles in the development and functioning of multicellular organisms and their evolutionary tinkering. Cell-matrix adhesion is mediated by sites along the plasma membrane that anchor the actin cytoskeleton to the matrix via a large number of proteins, collectively called the integrin adhesome. Fundamental challenges for understanding how cell-matrix adhesion sites assemble and function arise from their multi-functionality, rapid dynamics, large number of components and molecular diversity. Systems biology faces these challenges in its strive to understand how the integrin adhesome gives rise to functional adhesion sites. Synthetic biology enables engineering intracellular modules and circuits with properties of interest. In this review I discuss some of the fundamental questions in systems biology of cell-matrix adhesion and how synthetic biology can help addressing them.

  9. The functionality of biological knowledge in the workplace. Integrating school and workplace learning about reproduction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mazereeuw, M.

    2013-01-01

    This thesis reports on a design research project about a learning, supervising and teaching strategy to enable students in agricultural preparatory vocational secondary education (VMBO) to recognize the functionality of biological knowledge of reproduction in work placement sites. Although

  10. An integrated strategy for biological effects monitoring in Scottish coastal waters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Park, R.A.; Dobson, J.; Richardson, L.; Hill, A.

    1999-01-01

    The paper summarises SEPA's current programme of water quality and biological effects monitoring and, using recent examples, discusses the current environmental issues affecting the condition of our coastal waters. (author)

  11. An integrated model for interaction of electromagnetic fields with biological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Apollonio, F.; Liberti, M.; Cavagnaro, M.; D'Inzeo, G.; Tarricone, L.

    1999-01-01

    In this work is described a methodology for evaluation of interaction of high frequency electromagnetic field. Biological systems via connection of many macroscopic models. In particular the analysis of neuronal membrane exposed to electromagnetic fields [it

  12. Optimization of total arc degree for stereotactic radiotherapy by using integral biologically effective dose and irradiated volume

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lim, Do Hoon; Kim, Dae Yong; Lee, Myung Za; Chun, Ha Chung

    2001-01-01

    To find the optimal values of total arc degree to protect the normal brain tissue from high dose radiation in stereotactic radiotherapy planning. With Xknife-3 planning system and 4 MV linear accelerator, the authors planned under various values of parameters. One isocenter, 12, 20, 30, 40, 50, and 60 mm of collimator diameters, 100 deg, 200 deg, 300 deg, 400 deg, 500 deg, 600 deg, of total arc degrees, and 30 deg or 45 deg of arc intervals were used. After the completion of planning, the plans were compared each other using V 50 (the volume of normal brain that is delivered high dose radiation) and integral biologically effective dose. At 30 deg of arc interval, the values of V 50 had the decreased pattern with the increase of total arc degree in any collimator diameter. At 45 deg arc interval, up to 400 deg of total arc degree, the values of V 50 decreased with the increase of total arc degree, but at 500 deg and 600 deg of total arc degrees, the values increased. At 30 deg of arc interval, integral biologically effective dose showed the decreased pattern with the increase of total arc degree in any collimator diameter. At 45 deg arc interval with less than 40 mm collimator diameter, the integral biologically effective dose decreased with the increase of total arc degree, but with 50 and 60 mm of collimator diameters, up to 400 deg of total arc degree, integral biologically effective dose decreased with the increase of total arc degree, but at 500 deg and 600 deg of total arc degrees, the values increased. In the stereotactic radiotherapy planning for brain lesions, planning with 400 deg of total arc degree is optimal. Especially, when the larger collimator more than 50 mm diameter should be used, the uses of 500 deg and 600 deg of total arc degrees make the increase of V 50 and integral biologically effective dose, Therefore stereotactic radiotherapy planning using 400 deg of total arc degree can increase the therapeutic ratio and produce the effective outcome

  13. The Processing of Biologically Plausible and Implausible forms in American Sign Language: Evidence for Perceptual Tuning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Diogo; Poeppel, David; Corina, David

    The human auditory system distinguishes speech-like information from general auditory signals in a remarkably fast and efficient way. Combining psychophysics and neurophysiology (MEG), we demonstrate a similar result for the processing of visual information used for language communication in users of sign languages. We demonstrate that the earliest visual cortical responses in deaf signers viewing American Sign Language (ASL) signs show specific modulations to violations of anatomic constraints that would make the sign either possible or impossible to articulate. These neural data are accompanied with a significantly increased perceptual sensitivity to the anatomical incongruity. The differential effects in the early visual evoked potentials arguably reflect an expectation-driven assessment of somatic representational integrity, suggesting that language experience and/or auditory deprivation may shape the neuronal mechanisms underlying the analysis of complex human form. The data demonstrate that the perceptual tuning that underlies the discrimination of language and non-language information is not limited to spoken languages but extends to languages expressed in the visual modality.

  14. Novel approaches to the integration and analysis of systems biology data

    OpenAIRE

    Ramírez, Fidel

    2011-01-01

    The opportunity to investigate whole cellular systems using experimental and computational high-throughput methods leads to the generation of unprecedented amounts of data. Processing of these data often results in large lists of genes or proteins that need to be analyzed and interpreted in the context of all other biological information that is already available. To support such analyses, repositories aggregating and merging the biological information contained in different databases are req...

  15. 2H NMR evidence for antibiotic-induced cholesterol immobilization in biological model membranes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dufourc, E.J.; Smith, I.C.

    1985-01-01

    The interaction of the polyene antibiotic filipin with membrane sterols has been studied by deuterium nuclear magnetic resonance of the molecular probes [2,2,3,4,4,6- 2 H6]cholesterol and 1-myristoyl-2-[4',4',14',14',14'- 2 H5]myristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phospho- choline. At physiological temperatures, there is evidence of filipin-induced cholesterol immobilization in the membrane. The 2 H NMR spectra of cholesterol show two domains in which ordering and dynamics are very different. In one of these, cholesterol is static on the 2 H NMR time scale, whereas in the other it undergoes rapid axially symmetric motions similar to those it exhibits in the drug-free membrane; this indicates that the jumping frequency of cholesterol between the labile and immobilized domains is less than 10(5) s -1 . The distribution of cholesterol between these two sites is temperature dependent. In contrast to cholesterol, the phospholipids sense only one type of environment, at both the top and center of the bilayer, indicating that cholesterol acts as a screen, preventing the lipids from direct interaction with the antibiotic. At low temperature, the ordering of the lipid in the presence of cholesterol does not change upon filipin addition, whereas at elevated temperatures the local ordering of both the lipid and the labile cholesterol is significantly lower than that in the absence of the drug

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-04-30

    Prior studies have found abnormalities of functional brain asymmetry in patients having a major depressive disorder (MDD). This study aimed to replicate findings of reduced right hemisphere advantage for perceiving dichotic complex tones in depressed patients, and to determine whether patients having "pure" dysthymia show the same abnormality of perceptual asymmetry as MDD. It also examined gender differences in lateralization, and the extent to which abnormalities of perceptual asymmetry in depressed patients are dependent on gender. Unmedicated patients having either a MDD (n=96) or "pure" dysthymic disorder (n=42) and healthy controls (n=114) were tested on dichotic fused-words and complex-tone tests. Patient and control groups differed in right hemisphere advantage for complex tones, but not left hemisphere advantage for words. Reduced right hemisphere advantage for tones was equally present in MDD and dysthymia, but was more evident among depressed men than depressed women. Also, healthy men had greater hemispheric asymmetry than healthy women for both words and tones, whereas this gender difference was not seen for depressed patients. Dysthymia and MDD share a common abnormality of hemispheric asymmetry for dichotic listening. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Emerging concepts for management of river ecosystems and challenges to applied integration of physical and biological sciences in the Pacific Northwest, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruce E. Rieman; Jason B. Dunham; James L. Clayton

    2006-01-01

    Integration of biological and physical concepts is necessary to understand and conserve the ecological integrity of river systems. Past attempts at integration have often focused at relatively small scales and on mechanistic models that may not capture the complexity of natural systems leaving substantial uncertainty about ecological responses to management actions....

  18. Use of Graph Database for the Integration of Heterogeneous Biological Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoon, Byoung-Ha; Kim, Seon-Kyu; Kim, Seon-Young

    2017-03-01

    Understanding complex relationships among heterogeneous biological data is one of the fundamental goals in biology. In most cases, diverse biological data are stored in relational databases, such as MySQL and Oracle, which store data in multiple tables and then infer relationships by multiple-join statements. Recently, a new type of database, called the graph-based database, was developed to natively represent various kinds of complex relationships, and it is widely used among computer science communities and IT industries. Here, we demonstrate the feasibility of using a graph-based database for complex biological relationships by comparing the performance between MySQL and Neo4j, one of the most widely used graph databases. We collected various biological data (protein-protein interaction, drug-target, gene-disease, etc.) from several existing sources, removed duplicate and redundant data, and finally constructed a graph database containing 114,550 nodes and 82,674,321 relationships. When we tested the query execution performance of MySQL versus Neo4j, we found that Neo4j outperformed MySQL in all cases. While Neo4j exhibited a very fast response for various queries, MySQL exhibited latent or unfinished responses for complex queries with multiple-join statements. These results show that using graph-based databases, such as Neo4j, is an efficient way to store complex biological relationships. Moreover, querying a graph database in diverse ways has the potential to reveal novel relationships among heterogeneous biological data.

  19. A semantic web approach applied to integrative bioinformatics experimentation: a biological use case with genomics data.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Post, L.J.G.; Roos, M.; Marshall, M.S.; van Driel, R.; Breit, T.M.

    2007-01-01

    The numerous public data resources make integrative bioinformatics experimentation increasingly important in life sciences research. However, it is severely hampered by the way the data and information are made available. The semantic web approach enhances data exchange and integration by providing

  20. Integration of Proteomics, Bioinformatics, and Systems Biology in Traumatic Brain Injury Biomarker Discovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guingab-Cagmat, J.D.; Cagmat, E.B.; Hayes, R.L.; Anagli, J.

    2013-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major medical crisis without any FDA-approved pharmacological therapies that have been demonstrated to improve functional outcomes. It has been argued that discovery of disease-relevant biomarkers might help to guide successful clinical trials for TBI. Major advances in mass spectrometry (MS) have revolutionized the field of proteomic biomarker discovery and facilitated the identification of several candidate markers that are being further evaluated for their efficacy as TBI biomarkers. However, several hurdles have to be overcome even during the discovery phase which is only the first step in the long process of biomarker development. The high-throughput nature of MS-based proteomic experiments generates a massive amount of mass spectral data presenting great challenges in downstream interpretation. Currently, different bioinformatics platforms are available for functional analysis and data mining of MS-generated proteomic data. These tools provide a way to convert data sets to biologically interpretable results and functional outcomes. A strategy that has promise in advancing biomarker development involves the triad of proteomics, bioinformatics, and systems biology. In this review, a brief overview of how bioinformatics and systems biology tools analyze, transform, and interpret complex MS datasets into biologically relevant results is discussed. In addition, challenges and limitations of proteomics, bioinformatics, and systems biology in TBI biomarker discovery are presented. A brief survey of researches that utilized these three overlapping disciplines in TBI biomarker discovery is also presented. Finally, examples of TBI biomarkers and their applications are discussed. PMID:23750150

  1. Right Versus Left Colon Cancer Biology: Integrating the Consensus Molecular Subtypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Michael S; Menter, David G; Kopetz, Scott

    2017-03-01

    Although clinical management of colon cancer generally has not accounted for the primary tumor site, left-sided and right-sided colon cancers harbor different clinical and biologic characteristics. Right-sided colon cancers are more likely to have genome-wide hypermethylation via the CpG island methylator phenotype (CIMP), hypermutated state via microsatellite instability, and BRAF mutation. There are also differential exposures to potential carcinogenic toxins and microbiota in the right and left colon. Gene expression analyses further shed light on distinct biologic subtypes of colorectal cancers (CRCs), with 4 consensus molecular subtypes (CMSs) identified. Importantly, these subtypes are differentially distributed between right- and left-sided CRCs, with greater proportions of the "microsatellite unstable/immune" CMS1 and the "metabolic" CMS3 subtypes found in right-sided colon cancers. This review summarizes important biologic distinctions between right- and left-sided CRCs that likely impact prognosis and may predict for differential responses to biologic therapy. Given the inferior prognosis of stage III-IV right-sided CRCs and emerging data suggesting that anti-epidermal growth factor receptor antibody therapy is associated with worse survival in right-sided stage IV CRCs compared with left-sided cancers, these biologic differences between right- and left-sided CRCs provide critical context and may provide opportunities to personalize therapy. Copyright © 2017 by the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

  2. Systems biology integration of proteomic data in rodent models of depression reveals involvement of the immune response and glutamatergic signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carboni, Lucia; Nguyen, Thanh-Phuong; Caberlotto, Laura

    2016-12-01

    The pathophysiological basis of major depression is incompletely understood. Recently, numerous proteomic studies have been performed in rodent models of depression to investigate the molecular underpinnings of depressive-like behaviours with an unbiased approach. The objective of the study is to integrate the results of these proteomic studies in depression models to shed light on the most relevant molecular pathways involved in the disease. Network analysis is performed integrating preexisting proteomic data from rodent models of depression. The IntAct mouse and the HRPD are used as reference protein-protein interaction databases. The functionality analyses of the networks are then performed by testing overrepresented GO biological process terms and pathways. Functional enrichment analyses of the networks revealed an association with molecular processes related to depression in humans, such as those involved in the immune response. Pathways impacted by clinically effective antidepressants are modulated, including glutamatergic signaling and neurotrophic responses. Moreover, dysregulations of proteins regulating energy metabolism and circadian rhythms are implicated. The comparison with protein pathways modulated in depressive patients revealed significant overlapping. This systems biology study supports the notion that animal models can contribute to the research into the biology and therapeutics of depression. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  3. Ruminant Metabolic Systems Biology: Reconstruction and Integration of Transcriptome Dynamics Underlying Functional Responses of Tissues to Nutrition and Physiological Statea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bionaz, Massimo; Loor, Juan J.

    2012-01-01

    High-throughput ‘omics’ data analysis via bioinformatics is one key component of the systems biology approach. The systems approach is particularly well-suited for the study of the interactions between nutrition and physiological state with tissue metabolism and functions during key life stages of organisms such as the transition from pregnancy to lactation in mammals, ie, the peripartal period. In modern dairy cows with an unprecedented genetic potential for milk synthesis, the nature of the physiologic and metabolic adaptations during the peripartal period is multifaceted and involves key tissues such as liver, adipose, and mammary. In order to understand such adaptation, we have reviewed several works performed in our and other labs. In addition, we have used a novel bioinformatics approach, Dynamic Impact Approach (DIA), in combination with partly previously published data to help interpret longitudinal biological adaptations of bovine liver, adipose, and mammary tissue to lactation using transcriptomics datasets. Use of DIA with transcriptomic data from those tissues during normal physiological adaptations and in animals fed different levels of energy prepartum allowed visualization and integration of most-impacted metabolic pathways around the time of parturition. The DIA is a suitable tool for applying the integrative systems biology approach. The ultimate goal is to visualize the complexity of the systems at study and uncover key molecular players involved in the tissue’s adaptations to physiological state or nutrition. PMID:22807626

  4. Fort Collins Science Center- Policy Analysis and Science Assistance Branch : Integrating social, behavioral, economic and biological sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    The Fort Collins Science Center's Policy Analysis and Science Assistance (PASA) Branch is a team of approximately 22 scientists, technicians, and graduate student researchers. PASA provides unique capabilities in the U.S. Geological Survey by leading projects that integrate social, behavioral, economic, and biological analyses in the context of human-natural resource interactions. Resource planners, managers, and policymakers in the U.S. Departments of the Interior (DOI) and Agriculture (USDA), State and local agencies, as well as international agencies use information from PASA studies to make informed natural resource management and policy decisions. PASA scientists' primary functions are to conduct both theoretical and applied social science research, provide technical assistance, and offer training to advance performance in policy relevant research areas. Management and research issues associated with human-resource interactions typically occur in a unique context, involve difficult to access populations, require knowledge of both natural/biological science in addition to social science, and require the skill to integrate multiple science disciplines. In response to these difficult contexts, PASA researchers apply traditional and state-of-the-art social science methods drawing from the fields of sociology, demography, economics, political science, communications, social-psychology, and applied industrial organization psychology. Social science methods work in concert with our rangeland/agricultural management, wildlife, ecology, and biology capabilities. The goal of PASA's research is to enhance natural resource management, agency functions, policies, and decision-making. Our research is organized into four broad areas of study.

  5. Assessing Cross-disciplinary Efficiency of Soil Amendments for Agro-biologically, Economically, and Ecologically Integrated Soil Health Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Preventive and/or manipulative practices will be needed to maintain soil's biological, physiochemical, nutritional, and structural health in natural, managed, and disturbed ecosystems as a foundation for food security and global ecosystem sustainability. While there is a substantial body of interdisciplinary science on understanding function and structure of soil ecosystems, key gaps must be bridged in assessing integrated agro-biological, ecological, economical, and environmental efficiency of soil manipulation practices in time and space across ecosystems. This presentation discusses the application of a fertilizer use efficiency (FUE) model for assessing agronomic, economic, ecological, environmental, and nematode (pest) management efficiency of soil amendments. FUE is defined as increase in host productivity and/or decrease in plant-parasitic nematode population density in response to a given fertilizer treatment. Using the effects of nutrient amendment on Heterodera glycines population density and normalized difference vegetative index (indicator of physiological activities) of a soybean cultivar ‘CX 252’, how the FUE model recognizes variable responses and separates nutrient deficiency and toxicity from nematode parasitism as well as suitability of treatments designed to achieve desired biological and physiochemical soil health conditions is demonstrated. As part of bridging gaps between agricultural and ecological approaches to integrated understanding and management of soil health, modifications of the FUE model for analyzing the relationships amongst nematode community structure, soil parameters (eg. pH, nutrients, %OM), and plant response to soil amendment is discussed. PMID:22736840

  6. Trait-Dependent Biogeography: (Re)Integrating Biology into Probabilistic Historical Biogeographical Models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sukumaran, Jeet; Knowles, L Lacey

    2018-04-20

    The development of process-based probabilistic models for historical biogeography has transformed the field by grounding it in modern statistical hypothesis testing. However, most of these models abstract away biological differences, reducing species to interchangeable lineages. We present here the case for reintegration of biology into probabilistic historical biogeographical models, allowing a broader range of questions about biogeographical processes beyond ancestral range estimation or simple correlation between a trait and a distribution pattern, as well as allowing us to assess how inferences about ancestral ranges themselves might be impacted by differential biological traits. We show how new approaches to inference might cope with the computational challenges resulting from the increased complexity of these trait-based historical biogeographical models. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Systems biology of resilience and optimal health: integrating Chinese and Western medicine perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Herman van Wietmarschen

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Western science has been strong in measuring details of biological systems such as gene expression levels and metabolite concentrations, and has generally followed a bottom up approach with regard to explaining biological phenomena. Chinese medicine in contrast has evolved as a top down approach in which body and mind is seen as a whole, a phenomenological approach based on the organization and dynamics of symptom patterns. Western and Chinese perspectives are developing towards a ‘middle out’ approach. Chinese medicine diagnosis, we will argue, allows bridging the gap between biologists and psychologists and offers new opportunities for the development of health monitoring tools and health promotion strategies.

  8. Systems integration: an effective and innovative response to emerging biological threats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    House, Robert V

    2007-04-20

    A rapid and effective development of vaccines and other prophylactics, as well as novel therapeutics, against emerging threats requires the development and implementation of novel strategies. One such strategy is the integrator approach. This approach utilizes an integrated development team comprising expertise in program management, scientific management, clinical research, preclinical/nonclinical development, manufacturing, testing, risk management, quality assurance, and regulatory strategy and compliance. Key to the success of this approach is the successful management of subcontracted work, as well as the seamless integration of multiple systems and data inputs into a coherent development plan.

  9. Clinical practice guidelines on the evidence-based use of integrative therapies during and following breast cancer treatment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenlee, Heather; DuPont-Reyes, Melissa J.; Balneaves, Lynda G.; Carlson, Linda E.; Cohen, Misha R.; Deng, Gary; Johnson, Jillian A.; Mumber, Matthew; Seely, Dugald; Zick, Suzanna; Boyce, Lindsay; Tripathy, Debu

    2018-01-01

    Patients with breast cancer commonly use complementary and integrative therapies as supportive care during cancer treatment and to manage treatment-related side effects. However, evidence supporting the use of such therapies in the oncology setting is limited. This report provides updated clinical practice guidelines from the Society for Integrative Oncology on the use of integrative therapies for specific clinical indications during and after breast cancer treatment, including anxiety/stress, depression/mood disorders, fatigue, quality of life/physical functioning, chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, lymphedema, chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy, pain, and sleep disturbance. Clinical practice guidelines are based on a systematic literature review from 1990 through 2015. Music therapy, meditation, stress management, and yoga are recommended for anxiety/stress reduction. Meditation, relaxation, yoga, massage, and music therapy are recommended for depression/mood disorders. Meditation and yoga are recommended to improve quality of life. Acupressure and acupuncture are recommended for reducing chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Acetyl-L-carnitine is not recommended to prevent chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy due to a possibility of harm. No strong evidence supports the use of ingested dietary supplements to manage breast cancer treatment-related side effects. In summary, there is a growing body of evidence supporting the use of integrative therapies, especially mind-body therapies, as effective supportive care strategies during breast cancer treatment. Many integrative practices, however, remain understudied, with insufficient evidence to be definitively recommended or avoided. PMID:28436999

  10. A promising future for integrative biodiversity research: an increased role of scale-dependency and functional biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitz, L.

    2016-01-01

    Studies into the complex interaction between an organism and changes to its biotic and abiotic environment are fundamental to understanding what regulates biodiversity. These investigations occur at many phylogenetic, temporal and spatial scales and within a variety of biological and geological disciplines but often in relative isolation. This issue focuses on what can be achieved when ecological mechanisms are integrated into analyses of deep-time biodiversity patterns through the union of fossil and extant data and methods. We expand upon this perspective to argue that, given its direct relevance to the current biodiversity crisis, greater integration is needed across biodiversity research. We focus on the need to understand scaling effects, how lower-level ecological and evolutionary processes scale up and vice versa, and the importance of incorporating functional biology. Placing function at the core of biodiversity research is fundamental, as it establishes how an organism interacts with its abiotic and biotic environment and it is functional diversity that ultimately determines important ecosystem processes. To achieve full integration, concerted and ongoing efforts are needed to build a united and interactive community of biodiversity researchers, with education and interdisciplinary training at its heart. PMID:26977068

  11. A promising future for integrative biodiversity research: an increased role of scale-dependency and functional biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, S A; Schmitz, L

    2016-04-05

    Studies into the complex interaction between an organism and changes to its biotic and abiotic environment are fundamental to understanding what regulates biodiversity. These investigations occur at many phylogenetic, temporal and spatial scales and within a variety of biological and geological disciplines but often in relative isolation. This issue focuses on what can be achieved when ecological mechanisms are integrated into analyses of deep-time biodiversity patterns through the union of fossil and extant data and methods. We expand upon this perspective to argue that, given its direct relevance to the current biodiversity crisis, greater integration is needed across biodiversity research. We focus on the need to understand scaling effects, how lower-level ecological and evolutionary processes scale up and vice versa, and the importance of incorporating functional biology. Placing function at the core of biodiversity research is fundamental, as it establishes how an organism interacts with its abiotic and biotic environment and it is functional diversity that ultimately determines important ecosystem processes. To achieve full integration, concerted and ongoing efforts are needed to build a united and interactive community of biodiversity researchers, with education and interdisciplinary training at its heart. © 2016 The Author(s).

  12. S100A4 and its role in metastasis – computational integration of data on biological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buetti-Dinh, Antoine; Pivkin, Igor V; Friedman, Ran

    2015-08-01

    Characterising signal transduction networks is fundamental to our understanding of biology. However, redundancy and different types of feedback mechanisms make it difficult to understand how variations of the network components contribute to a biological process. In silico modelling of signalling interactions therefore becomes increasingly useful for the development of successful therapeutic approaches. Unfortunately, quantitative information cannot be obtained for all of the proteins or complexes that comprise the network, which limits the usability of computational models. We developed a flexible computational framework for the analysis of biological signalling networks. We demonstrate our approach by studying the mechanism of metastasis promotion by the S100A4 protein, and suggest therapeutic strategies. The advantage of the proposed method is that only limited information (interaction type between species) is required to set up a steady-state network model. This permits a straightforward integration of experimental information where the lack of details are compensated by efficient sampling of the parameter space. We investigated regulatory properties of the S100A4 network and the role of different key components. The results show that S100A4 enhances the activity of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), causing higher cell dissociation. Moreover, it leads to an increased stability of the pathological state. Thus, avoiding metastasis in S100A4-expressing tumours requires multiple target inhibition. Moreover, the analysis could explain the previous failure of MMP inhibitors in clinical trials. Finally, our method is applicable to a wide range of biological questions that can be represented as directional networks.

  13. Integrated chemical and biological assessment of contaminant impacts in selected European coastal and offshore marine areas

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hylland, Ketil; Robinson, Craig D.; Burgeot, Thierry; Martínez-Gómez, Concepción; Lang, Thomas; Svavarsson, Jörundur; Thain, John E.; Vethaak, A. Dick; Gubbins, Mattew J.

    This paper reports a full assessment of results from ICON, an international workshop on marine integrated contaminant monitoring, encompassing different matrices (sediment, fish, mussels, gastropods), areas (Iceland, North Sea, Baltic, Wadden Sea, Seine estuary and the western Mediterranean) and

  14. Do mollusks use vertebrate sex steroids as reproductive hormones? II. Critical review of the evidence that steroids have biological effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Alexander P

    2013-02-01

    In assessing the evidence as to whether vertebrate sex steroids (e.g. testosterone, estradiol, progesterone) have hormonal actions in mollusks, ca. 85% of research papers report at least one biological effect; and 18 out of 21 review papers (published between 1970 and 2012) express a positive view. However, just under half of the research studies can be rejected on the grounds that they did not actually test steroids, but compounds or mixtures that were only presumed to behave as steroids (or modulators of steroids) on the basis of their effects in vertebrates (e.g. Bisphenol-A, nonylphenol and sewage treatment effluents). Of the remaining 55 papers, some can be criticized for having no statistical analysis; some for using only a single dose of steroid; others for having irregular dose-response curves; 40 out of the 55 for not replicating the treatments; and 50 out of 55 for having no within-study repetition. Furthermore, most studies had very low effect sizes in comparison to fish-based bioassays for steroids (i.e. they had a very weak 'signal-to-noise' ratio). When these facts are combined with the fact that none of the studies were conducted with rigorous randomization or 'blinding' procedures (implying the possibility of 'operator bias') one must conclude that there is no indisputable bioassay evidence that vertebrate sex steroids have endocrinological or reproductive roles in mollusks. The only observation that has been independently validated is the ability of estradiol to trigger rapid (1-5 min) lysosomal membrane breakdown in hemocytes of Mytilus spp. This is a typical 'inflammatory' response, however, and is not proof that estradiol is a hormone - especially when taken in conjunction with the evidence (discussed in a previous review) that mollusks have neither the enzymes necessary to synthesize vertebrate steroids nor nuclear receptors with which to respond to them. Crown Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Chemistry and the worm: Caenorhabditis elegans as a platform for integrating chemical and biological research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hulme, S Elizabeth; Whitesides, George M

    2011-05-16

    This Review discusses the potential usefulness of the worm Caenorhabditis elegans as a model organism for chemists interested in studying living systems. C. elegans, a 1 mm long roundworm, is a popular model organism in almost all areas of modern biology. The worm has several features that make it attractive for biology: it is small (1000 cells), transparent, and genetically tractable. Despite its simplicity, the worm exhibits complex phenotypes associated with multicellularity: the worm has differentiated cells and organs, it ages and has a well-defined lifespan, and it is capable of learning and remembering. This Review argues that the balance between simplicity and complexity in the worm will make it a useful tool in determining the relationship between molecular-scale phenomena and organism-level phenomena, such as aging, behavior, cognition, and disease. Following an introduction to worm biology, the Review provides examples of current research with C. elegans that is chemically relevant. It also describes tools-biological, chemical, and physical-that are available to researchers studying the worm. Copyright © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  16. Integrating soil physical and biological properties in contrasting tillage systems in organic and conventional farming

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Crittenden, S.J.; Goede, de R.G.M.

    2016-01-01

    Though soil physical and soil biological properties are intrinsically linked in the soil environment they are often studied separately. This work adds value to analyses of soil biophysical quality of tillage systems under organic and conventional farming systems by correlating physical and

  17. Integration of Bioinformatics into an Undergraduate Biology Curriculum and the Impact on Development of Mathematical Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wightman, Bruce; Hark, Amy T.

    2012-01-01

    The development of fields such as bioinformatics and genomics has created new challenges and opportunities for undergraduate biology curricula. Students preparing for careers in science, technology, and medicine need more intensive study of bioinformatics and more sophisticated training in the mathematics on which this field is based. In this…

  18. Treatment of acid and sulphate-rich effluents in an integrated biological/chemical process

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Maree, JP

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available .4 g SO4/(l.d). The rate of biological sulphate removal was found to be directly related to the square root of sulphate, COD and VSS concentrations respectively, and inversely proportional to sulphide concentration. The practical value of simultaneous...

  19. Integrated multilaboratory systems biology reveals differences in protein metabolism between two reference yeast strains

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Canelas, Andre B.; Harrison, Nicola; Fazio, Alessandro

    2010-01-01

    The field of systems biology is often held back by difficulties in obtaining comprehensive, high-quality, quantitative data sets. In this paper, we undertook an interlaboratory effort to generate such a data set for a very large number of cellular components in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae,...

  20. Integrative Biological Chemistry Program Includes the Use of Informatics Tools, GIS and SAS Software Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Souza, Malcolm J.; Kashmar, Richard J.; Hurst, Kent; Fiedler, Frank; Gross, Catherine E.; Deol, Jasbir K.; Wilson, Alora

    2015-01-01

    Wesley College is a private, primarily undergraduate minority-serving institution located in the historic district of Dover, Delaware (DE). The College recently revised its baccalaureate biological chemistry program requirements to include a one-semester Physical Chemistry for the Life Sciences course and project-based experiential learning…

  1. Using Biocatalysis to Integrate Organic Chemistry into a Molecular Biology Laboratory Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beers, Mande; Archer, Crystal; Feske, Brent D.; Mateer, Scott C.

    2012-01-01

    Current cutting-edge biomedical investigation requires that the researcher have an operational understanding of several diverse disciplines. Biocatalysis is a field of science that operates at the crossroads of organic chemistry, biochemistry, microbiology, and molecular biology, and provides an excellent model for interdisciplinary research. We…

  2. Biodiesel and Integrated STEM: Vertical Alignment of High School Biology/Biochemistry and Chemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burrows, Andrea C.; Breiner, Jonathan M.; Keiner, Jennifer; Behm, Chris

    2014-01-01

    This article explores the vertical alignment of two high school classes, biology and chemistry, around the core concept of biodiesel fuel production. High school teachers and university faculty members investigated biodiesel as it relates to societal impact through a National Science Foundation Research Experience for Teachers. Using an action…

  3. Sequencing Genetics Information: Integrating Data into Information Literacy for Undergraduate Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacMillan, Don

    2010-01-01

    This case study describes an information literacy lab for an undergraduate biology course that leads students through a range of resources to discover aspects of genetic information. The lab provides over 560 students per semester with the opportunity for hands-on exploration of resources in steps that simulate the pathways of higher-level…

  4. Disrupted seasonal biology impacts health, food security, and ecosystems: a call for integrated research

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stevenson, T.J.; Visser, M.E.; Arnold, W.; Barrett, P.; Biello, S.; Dawson, A.; Denlinger, D.L.; Dominoni, Davide; Ebling, F.J.; Elton, S.; Evans, N.; Ferguson, H.M.; Foster, R.G.; Hau, M.; Haydon, D.T.; Hazlerigg, D.G.; Heideman, P.; Hopcraft, J.G.C.; Jonsson, N.N.; Kronfeld-Schor, N.; Kumar, V.; Lincoln, G.A.; MacLeod, R.; Martin, S.A.M.; Martinez-Bakker, M.; Nelson, R.J.; Reed, T.; Robinso, J.E.; Rock, D.; Schwartz, W.J.; Steffan-Dewenter, I.; Tauber, E.; Thackeray, S.J.; Umstatter, C.; Yoshimura, T.; Helm, B.

    2015-01-01

    The rhythm of life on earth is shaped by seasonal changes in the environment. Plants and animals show profound annual cycles in physiology, health, morphology, behaviour and demography in response to environmental cues. Seasonal biology impacts ecosystems and agriculture, with consequences for

  5. Integration of biological control and transgenic insect protection for mitigation of mycotoxins in corn

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biological control is known to be effective in reducing aflatoxin contamination of corn and some transgenic corn hybrids incur greatly reduced damage from corn earworm (Helicoverpa zea). We conducted seven field trials over two years to test the hypothesis that transgenic insect protection and biol...

  6. Evolution of natural history information in the 21st century – developing an integrated framework for biological and geographical data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reusser, Deborah A.; Lee, Henry

    2011-01-01

    Threats to marine and estuarine species operate over many spatial scales, from nutrient enrichment at the watershed/estuarine scale to invasive species and climate change at regional and global scales. To help address research questions across these scales, we provide here a standardized framework for a biogeographical information system containing queriable biological data that allows extraction of information on multiple species, across a variety of spatial scales based on species distributions, natural history attributes and habitat requirements. As scientists shift from research on localized impacts on individual species to regional and global scale threats, macroecological approaches of studying multiple species over broad geographical areas are becoming increasingly important. The standardized framework described here for capturing and integrating biological and geographical data is a critical first step towards addressing these macroecological questions and we urge organizations capturing biogeoinformatics data to consider adopting this framework.

  7. An optimized workflow for the integration of biological information into radiotherapy planning: experiences with T1w DCE-MRI

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Neff, T; Kiessling, F; Brix, G; Baudendistel, K; Zechmann, C; Giesel, F L; Bendl, R

    2005-01-01

    Planning of radiotherapy is often difficult due to restrictions on morphological images. New imaging techniques enable the integration of biological information into treatment planning and help to improve the detection of vital and aggressive tumour areas. This might improve clinical outcome. However, nowadays morphological data sets are still the gold standard in the planning of radiotherapy. In this paper, we introduce an in-house software platform enabling us to combine images from different imaging modalities yielding biological and morphological information in a workflow driven approach. This is demonstrated for the combination of morphological CT, MRI, functional DCE-MRI and PET data. Data of patients with a tumour of the prostate and with a meningioma were examined with DCE-MRI by applying pharmacokinetic two-compartment models for post-processing. The results were compared with the clinical plans for radiation therapy. Generated parameter maps give additional information about tumour spread, which can be incorporated in the definition of safety margins

  8. Holistic integration of gaze cues in visual face and body perception: Evidence from the composite design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vrancken, Leia; Germeys, Filip; Verfaillie, Karl

    2017-01-01

    A considerable amount of research on identity recognition and emotion identification with the composite design points to the holistic processing of these aspects in faces and bodies. In this paradigm, the interference from a nonattended face half on the perception of the attended half is taken as evidence for holistic processing (i.e., a composite effect). Far less research, however, has been dedicated to the concept of gaze. Nonetheless, gaze perception is a substantial component of face and body perception, and holds critical information for everyday communicative interactions. Furthermore, the ability of human observers to detect direct versus averted eye gaze is effortless, perhaps similar to identity perception and emotion recognition. However, the hypothesis of holistic perception of eye gaze has never been tested directly. Research on gaze perception with the composite design could facilitate further systematic comparison with other aspects of face and body perception that have been investigated using the composite design (i.e., identity and emotion). In the present research, a composite design was administered to assess holistic processing of gaze cues in faces (Experiment 1) and bodies (Experiment 2). Results confirmed that eye and head orientation (Experiment 1A) and head and body orientation (Experiment 2A) are integrated in a holistic manner. However, the composite effect was not completely disrupted by inversion (Experiments 1B and 2B), a finding that will be discussed together with implications for future research.

  9. Organizational factors influencing implementation of evidence-based practices for integrated treatment in behavioral health agencies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonham, Caroline A; Sommerfeld, David; Willging, Cathleen; Aarons, Gregory A

    2014-01-01

    Objective. In recent years, New Mexico has prioritized integrated treatment for cooccurring mental health and substance use disorders within its public behavioral health system. This report describes factors likely to be important when implementing evidence-based practices (EBPs) in community agencies. Methods. Our mixed-method research design consisted of observations, semistructured interviews, and surveys undertaken with employees at 14 agencies at baseline and after 18 months. We developed four-agency typologies based on iterative coding and analysis of observations and interviews. We then examined survey data from employees at the four exemplar agencies to validate qualitative findings. Results. Financial resources and strong leadership impacted agency capacity to train providers and implement EBPs. Quantitative analysis of service provider survey responses from these agencies (N = 38) supported qualitative findings and demonstrated significant mean score differences in leadership, organizational climate, and attitudes toward EBPs in anticipated directions. Conclusion. The availability of strong leadership and financial resources were key components to initial implementation success in this study of community agencies in New Mexico. Reliance only on external funding poses risks for sustainment when demoralizing work climates precipitate employee turnover. Strong agency leadership does not always compensate for deficient financial resources in vulnerable communities.

  10. Organizational Factors Influencing Implementation of Evidence-Based Practices for Integrated Treatment in Behavioral Health Agencies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caroline A. Bonham

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. In recent years, New Mexico has prioritized integrated treatment for cooccurring mental health and substance use disorders within its public behavioral health system. This report describes factors likely to be important when implementing evidence-based practices (EBPs in community agencies. Methods. Our mixed-method research design consisted of observations, semistructured interviews, and surveys undertaken with employees at 14 agencies at baseline and after 18 months. We developed four-agency typologies based on iterative coding and analysis of observations and interviews. We then examined survey data from employees at the four exemplar agencies to validate qualitative findings. Results. Financial resources and strong leadership impacted agency capacity to train providers and implement EBPs. Quantitative analysis of service provider survey responses from these agencies (N = 38 supported qualitative findings and demonstrated significant mean score differences in leadership, organizational climate, and attitudes toward EBPs in anticipated directions. Conclusion. The availability of strong leadership and financial resources were key components to initial implementation success in this study of community agencies in New Mexico. Reliance only on external funding poses risks for sustainment when demoralizing work climates precipitate employee turnover. Strong agency leadership does not always compensate for deficient financial resources in vulnerable communities.

  11. Evidence and opportunities for integrating landscape ecology into natural resource planning across multiple-use landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trammel, E. Jamie; Carter, Sarah; Haby, Travis S.; Taylor, Jason J.

    2018-01-01

    Enhancing natural resource management has been a focus of landscape ecology since its inception, but numerous authors argue that landscape ecology has not yet been effective in achieving the underlying goal of planning and designing sustainable landscapes. We developed nine questions reflecting the application of fundamental research topics in landscape ecology to the landscape planning process and reviewed two recent landscape-scale plans in western North America for evidence of these concepts in plan decisions. Both plans considered multiple resources, uses, and values, including energy development, recreation, conservation, and protection of cultural and historic resources. We found that land use change and multiscale perspectives of resource uses and values were very often apparent in planning decisions. Pattern-process relationships, connectivity and fragmentation, ecosystem services, landscape history, and climate change were reflected less frequently. Landscape sustainability was considered only once in the 295 decisions reviewed, and outputs of landscape models were not referenced. We suggest six actionable opportunities for further integrating landscape ecology concepts into landscape planning efforts: 1) use landscape sustainability as an overarching goal, 2) adopt a broad ecosystem services framework, 3) explore the role of landscape history more comprehensively, 4) regularly consider and accommodate potential effects of climate change, 5) use landscape models to support plan decisions, and 6) promote a greater presence of landscape ecologists within agencies that manage large land bases and encourage active involvement in agency planning efforts. Together these actions may improve the defensibility, durability, and sustainability of landscape plan decisions.

  12. Systems biology of bacterial nitrogen fixation: High-throughput technology and its integrative description with constraint-based modeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Resendis-Antonio Osbaldo

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Bacterial nitrogen fixation is the biological process by which atmospheric nitrogen is uptaken by bacteroids located in plant root nodules and converted into ammonium through the enzymatic activity of nitrogenase. In practice, this biological process serves as a natural form of fertilization and its optimization has significant implications in sustainable agricultural programs. Currently, the advent of high-throughput technology supplies with valuable data that contribute to understanding the metabolic activity during bacterial nitrogen fixation. This undertaking is not trivial, and the development of computational methods useful in accomplishing an integrative, descriptive and predictive framework is a crucial issue to decoding the principles that regulated the metabolic activity of this biological process. Results In this work we present a systems biology description of the metabolic activity in bacterial nitrogen fixation. This was accomplished by an integrative analysis involving high-throughput data and constraint-based modeling to characterize the metabolic activity in Rhizobium etli bacteroids located at the root nodules of Phaseolus vulgaris (bean plant. Proteome and transcriptome technologies led us to identify 415 proteins and 689 up-regulated genes that orchestrate this biological process. Taking into account these data, we: 1 extended the metabolic reconstruction reported for R. etli; 2 simulated the metabolic activity during symbiotic nitrogen fixation; and 3 evaluated the in silico results in terms of bacteria phenotype. Notably, constraint-based modeling simulated nitrogen fixation activity in such a way that 76.83% of the enzymes and 69.48% of the genes were experimentally justified. Finally, to further assess the predictive scope of the computational model, gene deletion analysis was carried out on nine metabolic enzymes. Our model concluded that an altered metabolic activity on these enzymes induced

  13. InterMine: a flexible data warehouse system for the integration and analysis of heterogeneous biological data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Richard N; Aleksic, Jelena; Butano, Daniela; Carr, Adrian; Contrino, Sergio; Hu, Fengyuan; Lyne, Mike; Lyne, Rachel; Kalderimis, Alex; Rutherford, Kim; Stepan, Radek; Sullivan, Julie; Wakeling, Matthew; Watkins, Xavier; Micklem, Gos

    2012-12-01

    InterMine is an open-source data warehouse system that facilitates the building of databases with complex data integration requirements and a need for a fast customizable query facility. Using InterMine, large biological databases can be created from a range of heterogeneous data sources, and the extensible data model allows for easy integration of new data types. The analysis tools include a flexible query builder, genomic region search and a library of 'widgets' performing various statistical analyses. The results can be exported in many commonly used formats. InterMine is a fully extensible framework where developers can add new tools and functionality. Additionally, there is a comprehensive set of web services, for which client libraries are provided in five commonly used programming languages. Freely available from http://www.intermine.org under the LGPL license. g.micklem@gen.cam.ac.uk Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

  14. Integrated, multi-scale, spatial-temporal cell biology--A next step in the post genomic era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horwitz, Rick

    2016-03-01

    New microscopic approaches, high-throughput imaging, and gene editing promise major new insights into cellular behaviors. When coupled with genomic and other 'omic information and "mined" for correlations and associations, a new breed of powerful and useful cellular models should emerge. These top down, coarse-grained, and statistical models, in turn, can be used to form hypotheses merging with fine-grained, bottom up mechanistic studies and models that are the back bone of cell biology. The goal of the Allen Institute for Cell Science is to develop the top down approach by developing a high throughput microscopy pipeline that is integrated with modeling, using gene edited hiPS cell lines in various physiological and pathological contexts. The output of these experiments and models will be an "animated" cell, capable of integrating and analyzing image data generated from experiments and models. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. MIPS Arabidopsis thaliana Database (MAtDB): an integrated biological knowledge resource based on the first complete plant genome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schoof, Heiko; Zaccaria, Paolo; Gundlach, Heidrun; Lemcke, Kai; Rudd, Stephen; Kolesov, Grigory; Arnold, Roland; Mewes, H. W.; Mayer, Klaus F. X.

    2002-01-01

    Arabidopsis thaliana is the first plant for which the complete genome has been sequenced and published. Annotation of complex eukaryotic genomes requires more than the assignment of genetic elements to the sequence. Besides completing the list of genes, we need to discover their cellular roles, their regulation and their interactions in order to understand the workings of the whole plant. The MIPS Arabidopsis thaliana Database (MAtDB; http://mips.gsf.de/proj/thal/db) started out as a repository for genome sequence data in the European Scientists Sequencing Arabidopsis (ESSA) project and the Arabidopsis Genome Initiative. Our aim is to transform MAtDB into an integrated biological knowledge resource by integrating diverse data, tools, query and visualization capabilities and by creating a comprehensive resource for Arabidopsis as a reference model for other species, including crop plants. PMID:11752263

  16. Integrating phenotypic data from electronic patient records with molecular level systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brunak, Søren

    2011-01-01

    Electronic patient records remain a rather unexplored, but potentially rich data source for discovering correlations between diseases. We describe a general approach for gathering phenotypic descriptions of patients from medical records in a systematic and non-cohort dependent manner. By extracti...... Classification of Disease ontology and is therefore in principle language independent. As a use case we show how records from a Danish psychiatric hospital lead to the identification of disease correlations, which subsequently are mapped to systems biology frameworks....

  17. Integrated Omics in Systems Biology: The New Frontier for Environmental Biotechnology

    OpenAIRE

    Hazen, Terry C.

    2008-01-01

    Environmental biotechnology encompasses a wide range of characterization, monitoring and control for bioenergy and bioremediation technologies that are based on biological processes. Recent breakthroughs in our understanding of biogeochemical processes and genomics are leading to exciting new and cost effective ways to monitor and manipulate the environment and potentially produce bioenergy fuels as we also cleanup the environment. Indeed, our ability to sequence an entire microbial genome in...

  18. Integrated omics in systems biology: The new frontier for environmental biotechnology, ecology, and evolution

    OpenAIRE

    Hazen, Terry C.

    2006-01-01

    Environmental biotechnology encompasses a wide range of characterization, monitoring and control or remediation technologies that are based on biological processes. Recent breakthroughs in our understanding of biogeochemical processes and genomics are leading to exciting new and cost effective ways to monitor and manipulate the environment. Indeed, our ability to sequence an entire microbial genome in just a few hours is leading to similar breakthroughs in characterizing proteomes, metabolome...

  19. Integrating plant and animal biology for the search of novel DNA damage biomarkers

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Nikitaki, Z.; Holá, Marcela; Donà, M.; Pavlopoulou, A.; Michalopoulos, I.; Angelis, Karel; Georgakilas, A. G.; Macovei, I.; Balestrazzi, A.

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 775, JAN-MAR (2018), s. 21-38 ISSN 1383-5742 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA16-01137S Institutional support: RVO:61389030 Keywords : DNA damage response * Ionizing radiation * Radiation exposure monitoring * Radiotolerance * Ultraviolet radiation Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Genetics and heredity (medical genetics to be 3) Impact factor: 5.500, year: 2016

  20. Towards the prediction of essential genes by integration of network topology, cellular localization and biological process information

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lemke Ney

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The identification of essential genes is important for the understanding of the minimal requirements for cellular life and for practical purposes, such as drug design. However, the experimental techniques for essential genes discovery are labor-intensive and time-consuming. Considering these experimental constraints, a computational approach capable of accurately predicting essential genes would be of great value. We therefore present here a machine learning-based computational approach relying on network topological features, cellular localization and biological process information for prediction of essential genes. Results We constructed a decision tree-based meta-classifier and trained it on datasets with individual and grouped attributes-network topological features, cellular compartments and biological processes-to generate various predictors of essential genes. We showed that the predictors with better performances are those generated by datasets with integrated attributes. Using the predictor with all attributes, i.e., network topological features, cellular compartments and biological processes, we obtained the best predictor of essential genes that was then used to classify yeast genes with unknown essentiality status. Finally, we generated decision trees by training the J48 algorithm on datasets with all network topological features, cellular localization and biological process information to discover cellular rules for essentiality. We found that the number of protein physical interactions, the nuclear localization of proteins and the number of regulating transcription factors are the most important factors determining gene essentiality. Conclusion We were able to demonstrate that network topological features, cellular localization and biological process information are reliable predictors of essential genes. Moreover, by constructing decision trees based on these data, we could discover cellular rules governing

  1. BIOLOGY STUDENTS’ TEACHER OPINIONS ABOUT THE INTEGRATION OF ICT INTO THE LEARNING AND TEACHING PROCESS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreja Špernjak

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Biology laboratory work can be performed in various ways, even using information and communication technologies (ICT. Whether a teacher incorporates it into laboratory work is related to different factors, but educators can influence students’ beliefs about the value of ICT through their pedagogical practice. In our study, student teachers of biology gave opinions on how successfully university professors use ICT in the classroom, where they acquired most knowledge about ICT and their attitude towards using of ICT in laboratory work. Student teachers were critical about the knowledge and usage of ICT of university professors in class. During their student teachers mostly failed to acquire knowledge about ICT and practice in incorporating it into daily routines. These results will be presented to our university professors, at which time we will suggest how they could use ICT more effectively in daily practice because, on the one hand, they are responsible for students teacher attitudes and for the level of student teacher knowledge, while, on the others, they precipitate indirectly in forming the pupils’ attitudes and determining the level of the pupils’ knowledge of ICT. The study was done on 85 student teachers of biology. Attitudes toward ICT are statistically significant by gender.

  2. Integration of physics and biology: synergistic undergraduate education for the 21st century.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodin, Terry; Vasaly, Helen; McBride, Duncan; White, Gary

    2013-06-01

    This is an exciting time to be a biologist. The advances in our field and the many opportunities to expand our horizons through interaction with other disciplines are intellectually stimulating. This is as true for people tasked with helping the field move forward through support of research and education projects that serve the nation's needs as for those carrying out that research and educating the next generation of biologists. So, it is a pleasure to contribute to this edition of CBE-Life Sciences Education. This column will cover three aspects of the interactions of physics and biology as seen from the viewpoint of four members of the Division of Undergraduate Education of the National Science Foundation. The first section places the material to follow in context. The second reviews some of the many interdisciplinary physics-biology projects we support. The third highlights mechanisms available for supporting new physics-biology undergraduate education projects based on ideas that arise, focusing on those needing and warranting outside support to come to fruition.

  3. The effectiveness of a clinically integrated e-learning course in evidence-based medicine: A cluster randomised controlled trial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kulier, Regina; Coppus, Sjors F. P. J.; Zamora, Javier; Hadley, Julie; Malick, Sadia; Das, Kausik; Weinbrenner, Susanne; Meyerrose, Berrit; Decsi, Tamas; Horvath, Andrea R.; Nagy, Eva; Emparanza, Jose I.; Arvanitis, Theodoros N.; Burls, Amanda; Cabello, Juan B.; Kaczor, Marcin; Zanrei, Gianni; Pierer, Karen; Stawiarz, Katarzyna; Kunz, Regina; Mol, Ben W. J.; Khan, Khalid S.

    2009-01-01

    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: To evaluate the educational effects of a clinically integrated e-learning course for teaching basic evidence-based medicine (EBM) among postgraduates compared to a traditional lecture-based course of equivalent content. METHODS: We conducted a cluster randomised controlled

  4. The Desire for Amputation or Paralyzation: Evidence for Structural Brain Anomalies in Body Integrity Identity Disorder (BIID)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Blom, Rianne M.; van Wingen, Guido A.; van der Wal, Sija J.; Luigjes, Judy; van Dijk, Milenna T.; Scholte, H. Steven; Denys, Damiaan

    2016-01-01

    Body Integrity Identity Disorder (BIID) is a condition in which individuals perceive a mismatch between their internal body scheme and physical body shape, resulting in an absolute desire to be either amputated or paralyzed. The condition is hypothesized to be of congenital nature, but evidence for

  5. Cross-border integration in the European electricity market. Evidence from the pricing behavior of Norwegian and Swiss exporters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Balaguer, Jacint

    2011-01-01

    This paper examines the electricity market integration process in two European areas based on the pricing behavior of Norwegian and Swiss exporters. The aim is to gain evidence for the period after the adoption of the 'Second Legislative Package' (2003). The pricing behavior of Norwegian exporters indicates that the wholesale markets for Denmark and Sweden are highly integrated. Moreover, results are fully compatible with the existence of a very competitive marketplace for electricity. This clearly contrasts with the evidence provided by Swiss exporters. In this last case, analysis revealed differences in pricing-to-market behavior between Italy, France and Germany, which indicates that exporters take advantage of international market segmentation and divergences between market structures. This outcome provides a reasonable explanation as to why price differences between countries cannot be fully attributed to transmission costs, as has been claimed in previous research. We also found cross-country convergence in levels of markups and in pricing-to-market behavior of the Swiss exporters for the first part of the period that was analyzed. The evidence is fully consistent with an initial impulse toward market integration originated by reforms implemented at the beginning of the last decade. - Highlights: → We exploit a model based on pricing-to-market behavior. → Price discrimination by Swiss exporters is found. → Nordic electricity markets are found to be already highly integrated. → Market integration was recently improved in continental area. → Results are consistent with reforms under the 'Second Legislative Package'.

  6. Cross-border integration in the European electricity market. Evidence from the pricing behavior of Norwegian and Swiss exporters

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Balaguer, Jacint, E-mail: jacint.balaguer@eco.uji.es [Department of Economics, Universitat Jaume I, 12071 Castellon (Spain)

    2011-09-15

    This paper examines the electricity market integration process in two European areas based on the pricing behavior of Norwegian and Swiss exporters. The aim is to gain evidence for the period after the adoption of the 'Second Legislative Package' (2003). The pricing behavior of Norwegian exporters indicates that the wholesale markets for Denmark and Sweden are highly integrated. Moreover, results are fully compatible with the existence of a very competitive marketplace for electricity. This clearly contrasts with the evidence provided by Swiss exporters. In this last case, analysis revealed differences in pricing-to-market behavior between Italy, France and Germany, which indicates that exporters take advantage of international market segmentation and divergences between market structures. This outcome provides a reasonable explanation as to why price differences between countries cannot be fully attributed to transmission costs, as has been claimed in previous research. We also found cross-country convergence in levels of markups and in pricing-to-market behavior of the Swiss exporters for the first part of the period that was analyzed. The evidence is fully consistent with an initial impulse toward market integration originated by reforms implemented at the beginning of the last decade. - Highlights: > We exploit a model based on pricing-to-market behavior. > Price discrimination by Swiss exporters is found. > Nordic electricity markets are found to be already highly integrated. > Market integration was recently improved in continental area. > Results are consistent with reforms under the 'Second Legislative Package'.

  7. Joint development of evidence-based medical record by doctors and patients through integrated Chinese and Western medicine on digestive system diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Bo; Gao, Hong-yang; Gao, Rui; Zhao, Ying-pan; Li, Qing-na; Zhao, Yang; Tang, Xu-dong; Shang, Hong-cai

    2016-02-01

    Building the clinical therapeutic evaluation system by combing the evaluation given by doctors and patients can form a more comprehensive and objective evaluation system. A literature search on the practice of evidence-based evaluation was conducted in key biomedical databases, i.e. PubMed, Excerpt Medica Database, China Biology Medicine disc and China National Knowledge Infrastructure. However, no relevant study on the subjects of interest was identified. Therefore, drawing on the principles of narrative medicine and expert opinion from systems of Chinese medicine and Western medicine, we propose to develop and pilot-test a novel evidence-based medical record format that captures the perspectives of both patients and doctors in a clinical trial. Further, we seek to evaluate a strategic therapeutic approach that integrates the wisdom of Chinese medicine with the scientific basis of Western medicine in the treatment of digestive system disorders. Evaluation of therapeutic efficacy of remedies under the system of Chinese medicine is an imperative ongoing research. The present study intends to identify a novel approach to assess the synergistic benefits achievable from an integrated therapeutic approach combining Chinese and Western system of medicine to treat digestive system disorders.

  8. Assessing environmental quality status by integrating chemical and biological effect data: The Cartagena coastal zone as a case.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-Gómez, Concepción; Fernández, Beatriz; Robinson, Craig D; Campillo, J Antonio; León, Víctor M; Benedicto, José; Hylland, Ketil; Vethaak, A Dick

    2017-03-01

    Cartagena coastal zone (W Mediterranean) was chosen for a practical case study to investigate the suitability of an integrated indicator framework for marine monitoring and assessment of chemicals and their effects, which was developed by ICES and OSPAR. Red mullet (Mullus barbatus) and the Mediterranean mussel (Mytilus galloprovincialis) were selected as target species. Concentrations of contaminants in sediment and biota, and contaminant-related biomarkers were analysed. To assess environmental quality in the Cartagena coastal zone with respect to chemical pollution, data were assessed using available assessment criteria, and then integrated for different environmental matrices. A qualitative scoring method was used to rank the overall assessments into selected categories and to evaluate the confidence level of the final integrated assessment. The ICES/OSPAR integrated assessment framework, originally designed for the North Atlantic, was found to be applicable for Mediterranean species and environmental matrices. Further development of assessment criteria of chemical and biological parameters in sediments and target species from the Mediterranean will, however, be required before this framework can be fully applied for determining Good Environmental Status (GES) of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive in these regions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Biological Cell Identification by Integrating Micro-Fluidics, Electrical Impedance Spectroscopy and Stochastic Estimation

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-03-01

    Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm entitled "Skin Cancer as Seen by Electrical Impedance" [1]. The thesis describes Åberg�s experiments to detect skin cancer...ska Institutet , 2004. 2. Ayli¤e, H. Edward, et al. �Electric Impedance Spectroscopy Using Microchannels with Integrated Metal Electrodes

  10. A Holistic Approach Including Biological and Geological Criteria for Integrative Management in Protected Areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peña, Lorena; Monge-Ganuzas, Manu; Onaindia, Miren; De Manuel, Beatriz Fernández; Mendia, Miren

    2017-02-01

    Biodiversity hotspots and geosites are indivisible parts of natural heritage. Therefore, an adequate spatial delimitation and understanding of both and their linkages are necessary in order to be able to establish conservation policies. Normally, biodiversity hotspots are a typical target for those policies but, generally, geosites are not taken into account. Thus, this paper aims to fill this gap by providing an easily replicable method for the identification and integration of the geosites and the biodiversity hotspots in a Network for Integrative Nature Conservation that highlights their linkages. The method here presented has been applied to Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve situated in southeastern of the Bay of Biscay. The obtained results indicate that some geosites that are not directly related with biodiversity hotspots remain unprotected. Thus, from the study carried out, it can be stated that we conserving just the biodiversity hotspots is not enough to conserve the whole natural heritage of a protected area, as some plots interesting due to their relevant geoheritage remain unprotected. Therefore, it is necessary to fully integrate geosites into the planning documents of protected areas as a part of an ecosystem approach. The ecosystem approach recognizes the integrity of abiotic and biotic elements in nature conservation policies. Moreover, the proposed framework and the innovative methodology can be used as an easy input to identify priority areas for conservation, to improve the protected areas conservation planning, and to demonstrate the linkages between biodiversity hotspots and geosites.

  11. A Holistic Approach Including Biological and Geological Criteria for Integrative Management in Protected Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peña, Lorena; Monge-Ganuzas, Manu; Onaindia, Miren; De Manuel, Beatriz Fernández; Mendia, Miren

    2017-02-01

    Biodiversity hotspots and geosites are indivisible parts of natural heritage. Therefore, an adequate spatial delimitation and understanding of both and their linkages are necessary in order to be able to establish conservation policies. Normally, biodiversity hotspots are a typical target for those policies but, generally, geosites are not taken into account. Thus, this paper aims to fill this gap by providing an easily replicable method for the identification and integration of the geosites and the biodiversity hotspots in a Network for Integrative Nature Conservation that highlights their linkages. The method here presented has been applied to Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve situated in southeastern of the Bay of Biscay. The obtained results indicate that some geosites that are not directly related with biodiversity hotspots remain unprotected. Thus, from the study carried out, it can be stated that we conserving just the biodiversity hotspots is not enough to conserve the whole natural heritage of a protected area, as some plots interesting due to their relevant geoheritage remain unprotected. Therefore, it is necessary to fully integrate geosites into the planning documents of protected areas as a part of an ecosystem approach. The ecosystem approach recognizes the integrity of abiotic and biotic elements in nature conservation policies. Moreover, the proposed framework and the innovative methodology can be used as an easy input to identify priority areas for conservation, to improve the protected areas conservation planning, and to demonstrate the linkages between biodiversity hotspots and geosites.

  12. Integrating Radiology and Anatomy Teaching in Medical Education in the UK--The Evidence, Current Trends, and Future Scope.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heptonstall, N B; Ali, T; Mankad, K

    2016-04-01

    This review article presents the current evidence of the importance of integrating radiology and anatomy in medical education in the UK, a recommendation by a number of key anatomy, education, and radiology organizations. Current evidence highlights that on average only 5% of total teaching time in medical education is dedicated to radiology. Often, radiology teaching does not adequately fulfill students' learning needs and potentially leaves them underprepared for medical practice. Benefits of integrating radiology and anatomy include improved clinical application of anatomy, an increase in student's interest in anatomy, and ultimately improved radiological interpretation. Various modalities exist for the integration of radiology and anatomy, facilitated by the vast portability of radiological images. It appears that combining radiological resources with traditional anatomy teaching methodology in a blended approach is most beneficial. Copyright © 2016 The Association of University Radiologists. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Impacts of agricultural land use on biological integrity: A causal analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riseng, C.M.; Wiley, M.J.; Black, R.W.; Munn, M.D.

    2011-01-01

    Agricultural land use has often been linked to nutrient enrichment, habitat degradation, hydrologic alteration, and loss of biotic integrity in streams. The U.S. Geological Survey's National Water Quality Assessment Program sampled 226 stream sites located in eight agriculture-dominated study units across the United States to investigate the geographic variability and causes of agricultural impacts on stream biotic integrity. In this analysis we used structural equation modeling (SEM) to develop a national and set of regional causal models linking agricultural land use to measured instream conditions. We then examined the direct, indirect, and total effects of agriculture on biotic integrity as it acted through multiple water quality and habitat pathways. In our nation-wide model, cropland affected benthic communities by both altering structural habitats and by imposing water quality-related stresses. Regionspecific modeling demonstrated that geographic context altered the relative importance of causal pathways through which agricultural activities affected stream biotic integrity. Cropland had strong negative total effects on the invertebrate community in the national, Midwest, and Western models, but a very weak effect in the Eastern Coastal Plain model. In theWestern Arid and Eastern Coastal Plain study regions, cropland impacts were transmitted primarily through dissolved water quality contaminants, but in the Midwestern region, they were transmitted primarily through particulate components of water quality. Habitat effects were important in the Western Arid model, but negligible in the Midwest and Eastern Coastal Plain models. The relative effects of riparian forested wetlands also varied regionally, having positive effects on biotic integrity in the Eastern Coastal Plain andWestern Arid region models, but no statistically significant effect in the Midwest. These differences in response to cropland and riparian cover suggest that best management practices and

  14. A biologically inspired neural model for visual and proprioceptive integration including sensory training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saidi, Maryam; Towhidkhah, Farzad; Gharibzadeh, Shahriar; Lari, Abdolaziz Azizi

    2013-12-01

    Humans perceive the surrounding world by integration of information through different sensory modalities. Earlier models of multisensory integration rely mainly on traditional Bayesian and causal Bayesian inferences for single causal (source) and two causal (for two senses such as visual and auditory systems), respectively. In this paper a new recurrent neural model is presented for integration of visual and proprioceptive information. This model is based on population coding which is able to mimic multisensory integration of neural centers in the human brain. The simulation results agree with those achieved by casual Bayesian inference. The model can also simulate the sensory training process of visual and proprioceptive information in human. Training process in multisensory integration is a point with less attention in the literature before. The effect of proprioceptive training on multisensory perception was investigated through a set of experiments in our previous study. The current study, evaluates the effect of both modalities, i.e., visual and proprioceptive training and compares them with each other through a set of new experiments. In these experiments, the subject was asked to move his/her hand in a circle and estimate its position. The experiments were performed on eight subjects with proprioception training and eight subjects with visual training. Results of the experiments show three important points: (1) visual learning rate is significantly more than that of proprioception; (2) means of visual and proprioceptive errors are decreased by training but statistical analysis shows that this decrement is significant for proprioceptive error and non-significant for visual error, and (3) visual errors in training phase even in the beginning of it, is much less than errors of the main test stage because in the main test, the subject has to focus on two senses. The results of the experiments in this paper is in agreement with the results of the neural model

  15. Mechanisms of Percept-Percept and Image-Percept Integration in Vision: Behavioral and Electrophysiological Evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalvit, Silvia; Eimer, Martin

    2011-01-01

    Previous research has shown that the detection of a visual target can be guided not only by the temporal integration of two percepts, but also by integrating a percept and an image held in working memory. Behavioral and event-related brain potential (ERP) measures were obtained in a target detection task that required temporal integration of 2…

  16. Design and construction of a first-generation high-throughput integrated robotic molecular biology platform for bioenergy applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Stephen R; Butt, Tauseef R; Bartolett, Scott; Riedmuller, Steven B; Farrelly, Philip

    2011-08-01

    The molecular biological techniques for plasmid-based assembly and cloning of gene open reading frames are essential for elucidating the function of the proteins encoded by the genes. High-throughput integrated robotic molecular biology platforms that have the capacity to rapidly clone and express heterologous gene open reading frames in bacteria and yeast and to screen large numbers of expressed proteins for optimized function are an important technology for improving microbial strains for biofuel production. The process involves the production of full-length complementary DNA libraries as a source of plasmid-based clones to express the desired proteins in active form for determination of their functions. Proteins that were identified by high-throughput screening as having desired characteristics are overexpressed in microbes to enable them to perform functions that will allow more cost-effective and sustainable production of biofuels. Because the plasmid libraries are composed of several thousand unique genes, automation of the process is essential. This review describes the design and implementation of an automated integrated programmable robotic workcell capable of producing complementary DNA libraries, colony picking, isolating plasmid DNA, transforming yeast and bacteria, expressing protein, and performing appropriate functional assays. These operations will allow tailoring microbial strains to use renewable feedstocks for production of biofuels, bioderived chemicals, fertilizers, and other coproducts for profitable and sustainable biorefineries. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  17. Development of SRS.php, a Simple Object Access Protocol-based library for data acquisition from integrated biological databases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbosa-Silva, A; Pafilis, E; Ortega, J M; Schneider, R

    2007-12-11

    Data integration has become an important task for biological database providers. The current model for data exchange among different sources simplifies the manner that distinct information is accessed by users. The evolution of data representation from HTML to XML enabled programs, instead of humans, to interact with biological databases. We present here SRS.php, a PHP library that can interact with the data integration Sequence Retrieval System (SRS). The library has been written using SOAP definitions, and permits the programmatic communication through webservices with the SRS. The interactions are possible by invoking the methods described in WSDL by exchanging XML messages. The current functions available in the library have been built to access specific data stored in any of the 90 different databases (such as UNIPROT, KEGG and GO) using the same query syntax format. The inclusion of the described functions in the source of scripts written in PHP enables them as webservice clients to the SRS server. The functions permit one to query the whole content of any SRS database, to list specific records in these databases, to get specific fields from the records, and to link any record among any pair of linked databases. The case study presented exemplifies the library usage to retrieve information regarding registries of a Plant Defense Mechanisms database. The Plant Defense Mechanisms database is currently being developed, and the proposal of SRS.php library usage is to enable the data acquisition for the further warehousing tasks related to its setup and maintenance.

  18. Evidence Integration in Natural Acoustic Textures during Active and Passive Listening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Górska, Urszula; Rupp, Andre; Boubenec, Yves; Celikel, Tansu; Englitz, Bernhard

    2018-01-01

    Many natural sounds can be well described on a statistical level, for example, wind, rain, or applause. Even though the spectro-temporal profile of these acoustic textures is highly dynamic, changes in their statistics are indicative of relevant changes in the environment. Here, we investigated the neural representation of change detection in natural textures in humans, and specifically addressed whether active task engagement is required for the neural representation of this change in statistics. Subjects listened to natural textures whose spectro-temporal statistics were modified at variable times by a variable amount. Subjects were instructed to either report the detection of changes (active) or to passively listen to the stimuli. A subset of passive subjects had performed the active task before (passive-aware vs passive-naive). Psychophysically, longer exposure to pre-change statistics was correlated with faster reaction times and better discrimination performance. EEG recordings revealed that the build-up rate and size of parieto-occipital (PO) potentials reflected change size and change time. Reduced effects were observed in the passive conditions. While P2 responses were comparable across conditions, slope and height of PO potentials scaled with task involvement. Neural source localization identified a parietal source as the main contributor of change-specific potentials, in addition to more limited contributions from auditory and frontal sources. In summary, the detection of statistical changes in natural acoustic textures is predominantly reflected in parietal locations both on the skull and source level. The scaling in magnitude across different levels of task involvement suggests a context-dependent degree of evidence integration.

  19. Reality of near-death-experience memories: Evidence from a psychodynamic and electrophysiological integrated study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arianna ePalmieri

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The nature of near-death experiences (NDEs is largely unknown but recent evidence suggests the intriguing possibility that NDEs may refer to actually perceived, and stored, experiences (although not necessarily in relation to the external physical world. We adopted an integrated approach involving a hypnosis-based clinical protocol to improve recall and decrease memory inaccuracy together with Electroencephalography (EEG recording in order to investigate the characteristics of NDE memories and their neural markers compared to memories of both real and imagined events. We included 10 participants with NDEs, defined by the Greyson NDE scale, and 10 control subjects without NDE. Memories were assessed using the Memory Characteristics Questionnaire.Our hypnosis-based protocol increased the amount of details in the recall of all kind of memories considered (NDE, real, and imagined events. Findings showed that NDE memories were similar to real memories in terms of detail richness, self-referential, and emotional information. Moreover, NDE memories were significantly different from memories of imagined events. The pattern of EEG results indicated that real memories recall was positively associated with two memory-related frequency bands, i.e., high alpha and gamma. NDE memories were linked with theta band, a well-known marker of episodic memory. The recall of NDE memories was also related to delta band, which indexes processes such as the recollection of the past, as well as trance states, hallucinations, and other related portals to transpersonal experience. It is notable that the EEG pattern of correlations for NDE memories recall differed from the pattern for memories of imagined events. In conclusion, our findings suggest that, at a phenomenological level, NDE memories cannot be considered equivalent to imagined memories, and at a neural level, NDE memories are stored as episodic memories of events experienced in a peculiar state of consciousness.

  20. Achieving Adherence to Evidence-Based Practices: Are Health IT and Hospital-Physician Integration Complementary or Substitutive Strategies?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Everson, Jordan; Lee, Shoou-Yih Daniel; Adler-Milstein, Julia

    2016-12-01

    In response to evolving policies and conditions, hospitals have increased health information technology (HIT) adoption and strived to improve hospital-physician integration. While evidence suggests that both HIT and integration confer independent benefits, when combined, they may provide complementary means to achieve high performance or overlap to offset each other's contribution. We explore this relationship in the context of hospital adherence to evidence-based practices (EBPs). Using the American Hospital Association's Annual and IT Supplement surveys, and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services's Hospital Compare, we estimate the independent relationships and interactions between HIT and hospital-physician integration with respect to EBP adherence. HIT adoption and tight (but not loose) integration are independently associated with greater adherence to EBPs. The interaction between HIT adoption and tight integration is negative, consistent with an offsetting association between HIT adoption and integration in their relationship to EBP adherence. This finding reveals the need to be aware of potential substitutive effects from simultaneous pursuit of multiple approaches to performance improvement. © The Author(s) 2016.

  1. Network motif-based identification of transcription factor-target gene relationships by integrating multi-source biological data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de los Reyes Benildo G

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Integrating data from multiple global assays and curated databases is essential to understand the spatio-temporal interactions within cells. Different experiments measure cellular processes at various widths and depths, while databases contain biological information based on established facts or published data. Integrating these complementary datasets helps infer a mutually consistent transcriptional regulatory network (TRN with strong similarity to the structure of the underlying genetic regulatory modules. Decomposing the TRN into a small set of recurring regulatory patterns, called network motifs (NM, facilitates the inference. Identifying NMs defined by specific transcription factors (TF establishes the framework structure of a TRN and allows the inference of TF-target gene relationship. This paper introduces a computational framework for utilizing data from multiple sources to infer TF-target gene relationships on the basis of NMs. The data include time course gene expression profiles, genome-wide location analysis data, binding sequence data, and gene ontology (GO information. Results The proposed computational framework was tested using gene expression data associated with cell cycle progression in yeast. Among 800 cell cycle related genes, 85 were identified as candidate TFs and classified into four previously defined NMs. The NMs for a subset of TFs are obtained from literature. Support vector machine (SVM classifiers were used to estimate NMs for the remaining TFs. The potential downstream target genes for the TFs were clustered into 34 biologically significant groups. The relationships between TFs and potential target gene clusters were examined by training recurrent neural networks whose topologies mimic the NMs to which the TFs are classified. The identified relationships between TFs and gene clusters were evaluated using the following biological validation and statistical analyses: (1 Gene set enrichment

  2. Integration of a zebrafish research project into a molecular biology course to support critical thinking and course content goals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felzien, Lisa K

    2016-11-12

    Engaging undergraduates in research is essential for teaching them to think like scientists, and it has become a desired component of classroom and laboratory instruction. Research projects that span an entire semester expose students to a variety of concepts and techniques and allow students to use experiments to learn scientific principles, understand why specific techniques are applicable, critically analyze varied data, and examine how experimentation leads to acquiring knowledge. To provide an experience with these features, a semester long research project was integrated into a combined lecture and laboratory course, Molecular Biology. The project utilized the zebrafish model to examine gene expression during embryonic development and required students to develop and test hypotheses about the timing of expression of previously uncharacterized genes. The main goals for the project were to provide opportunities for students to develop critical thinking skills required for conducting research and to support the content goals of the course. To determine whether these goals were met, student performance on the steps of the project and related pre-test and post-test questions was examined. © 2016 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 44(6):565-573, 2016. © 2016 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  3. The potential of text mining in data integration and network biology for plant research: a case study on Arabidopsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Landeghem, Sofie; De Bodt, Stefanie; Drebert, Zuzanna J; Inzé, Dirk; Van de Peer, Yves

    2013-03-01

    Despite the availability of various data repositories for plant research, a wealth of information currently remains hidden within the biomolecular literature. Text mining provides the necessary means to retrieve these data through automated processing of texts. However, only recently has advanced text mining methodology been implemented with sufficient computational power to process texts at a large scale. In this study, we assess the potential of large-scale text mining for plant biology research in general and for network biology in particular using a state-of-the-art text mining system applied to all PubMed abstracts and PubMed Central full texts. We present extensive evaluation of the textual data for Arabidopsis thaliana, assessing the overall accuracy of this new resource for usage in plant network analyses. Furthermore, we combine text mining information with both protein-protein and regulatory interactions from experimental databases. Clusters of tightly connected genes are delineated from the resulting network, illustrating how such an integrative approach is essential to grasp the current knowledge available for Arabidopsis and to uncover gene information through guilt by association. All large-scale data sets, as well as the manually curated textual data, are made publicly available, hereby stimulating the application of text mining data in future plant biology studies.

  4. ePlant and the 3D data display initiative: integrative systems biology on the world wide web.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fucile, Geoffrey; Di Biase, David; Nahal, Hardeep; La, Garon; Khodabandeh, Shokoufeh; Chen, Yani; Easley, Kante; Christendat, Dinesh; Kelley, Lawrence; Provart, Nicholas J

    2011-01-10

    Visualization tools for biological data are often limited in their ability to interactively integrate data at multiple scales. These computational tools are also typically limited by two-dimensional displays and programmatic implementations that require separate configurations for each of the user's computing devices and recompilation for functional expansion. Towards overcoming these limitations we have developed "ePlant" (http://bar.utoronto.ca/eplant) - a suite of open-source world wide web-based tools for the visualization of large-scale data sets from the model organism Arabidopsis thaliana. These tools display data spanning multiple biological scales on interactive three-dimensional models. Currently, ePlant consists of the following modules: a sequence conservation explorer that includes homology relationships and single nucleotide polymorphism data, a protein structure model explorer, a molecular interaction network explorer, a gene product subcellular localization explorer, and a gene expression pattern explorer. The ePlant's protein structure explorer module represents experimentally determined and theoretical structures covering >70% of the Arabidopsis proteome. The ePlant framework is accessed entirely through a web browser, and is therefore platform-independent. It can be applied to any model organism. To facilitate the development of three-dimensional displays of biological data on the world wide web we have established the "3D Data Display Initiative" (http://3ddi.org).

  5. Application study of nuclear technologies for integration chemical, biological and radiological technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shin, Jae Kon; Han, M. H.; Kim, Y. H.; Yang, J. E.; Jung, K. S.; Cha, H. K.; Moon, J.; La, K. H

    2001-02-01

    The projects are suggested the method to maximize the technology and research results which are being carried out by KAERI on the nuclear field. The study presents 1)the technology to rapidly and accurately determine and the nature of contamination, 2) the technology to predict the spread of contaminant and the magnitude of damage, and 3) the expert-aided decision making technology to identify the optimum counter-measures. And the solutions are also suggested the application to military technology in Chemical, Biological and Radiation field. In addition, I hope this kind of cooperation model come to be the good case of military civilian research harmony to improve the national competition capability.

  6. An integrated assessment of pollution and biological effects in flounder, mussels and sediment in the southern Baltic Sea coastal area.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dabrowska, Henryka; Kopko, Orest; Lehtonen, Kari K; Lang, Thomas; Waszak, Ilona; Balode, Maija; Strode, Evita

    2017-02-01

    Organic and metal contaminants and biological effects were investigated in flounder, mussels, and sediments in the southern Baltic Sea coastal area in order to assess environmental quality status in that area. Four sites were selected, including two within the Gulf of Gdańsk (GoG). In biota and sediment at each site, DDTs dominated over PCBs and PBDEs were the least abundant among organic contaminants. Their concentrations decreased progressively outward from GoG. Among metal contaminants, the levels of Hg, Pb, and Cd were elevated in GoG. Biomarkers in flounder, EROD activity and DNA SB, showed moderate positive correlations with organic and metal contaminants. In flounder, the integrated biomarker index (IBR/n) presented a spatial trend coherent with chemical pollution index (CPI), but there was no clear spatial correspondence between IBR/n and CPI in mussels nor between sediment toxicity index (STI) and sediment CPI. The integrated assessment of contaminant and biological effect data against available assessment criteria indicated that in biota, the contaminant assessment thresholds were most often exceeded by CB-118, heptachlor, PBDE, and Hg (in the GoG sediments by p,p'-DDT, Hg and Cd), while of the biological determinants, the threshold was breeched by AChE activity in mussels in GoG. Applying the ICES/OSPAR traffic-light approach showed that of the 50 parameters assessed at each site, there were 18% of determinants in the red color category in the two GoG sites and 8% of determinants in the two sites outside GoG, which indicated that none of the four investigated sites attained good environmental status (GES).

  7. Chemical Approach to Biological Safety: Molecular-Level Control of an Integrated Zinc Finger Nuclease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Németh, Eszter; Asaka, Masamitsu N; Kato, Kohsuke

    2018-01-01

    circular dichroism spectroscopy, and nano-electrospray ionisation mass spectrometry. In situ intramolecular activation of the nuclease domain was observed, resulting in specific cleavage of DNA with moderate activity. This study represents a new approach to AN design through integrated nucleases consisting......Application of artificial nucleases (ANs) in genome editing is still hindered by their cytotoxicity related to off-target cleavages. This problem can be targeted by regulation of the nuclease domain. Here, we provide an experimental survey of computationally designed integrated zinc finger...... nucleases, constructed by linking the inactivated catalytic centre and the allosteric activator sequence of the colicin E7 nuclease domain to the two opposite termini of a zinc finger array. DNA specificity and metal binding were confirmed by electrophoretic mobility shift assays, synchrotron radiation...

  8. Pyrolyzed Photoresist Electrodes for Integration in Microfluidic Chips for Transmitter Detection from Biological Cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Simon Tylsgaard; Argyraki, Aikaterini; Amato, Letizia

    2013-01-01

    In this study, we show how pyrolyzed photoresist carbon electrodes can be used for amperometric detection of potassium-induced transmitter release from large groups of neuronal PC 12 cells. This opens the way for the use of carbon film electrodes in microfabricated devices for neurochemical drug ...... by the difference in photoresist viscosity. By adding a soft bake step to the fabrication procedure, the flatness of pyrolyzed AZ 5214 electrodes could be improved which would facilitate their integration in microfluidic chip devices....

  9. ChlamyCyc: an integrative systems biology database and web-portal for Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    OpenAIRE

    May, P.; Christian, J.O.; Kempa, S.; Walther, D.

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Background The unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii is an important eukaryotic model organism for the study of photosynthesis and plant growth. In the era of modern high-throughput technologies there is an imperative need to integrate large-scale data sets from high-throughput experimental techniques using computational methods and database resources to provide comprehensive information about the molecular and cellular organization of a single organism. Results In the fra...

  10. Integration of biological method and membrane technology in treating palm oil mill effluent

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Yejian; YAN Li; QIAO Xiangli; CHI Lina; NIU Xiangjun; MEI Zhijian; ZHANG Zhenjia

    2008-01-01

    Palm oil industry is the most important agro-industry in Malaysia, but its by-product-palm oil mill effluent (POME), posed a great threat to water environment. In the past decades, several treatment and disposal methods have been proposed and investigated to solve this problem. A two-stage pilot-scale plant was designed and constructed for POME treatment. Anaerobic digestion and aerobic biodegradation constituted the first biological stage, while ultrafiltration (UF) and reverse osmosis (RO) membrane units were combined as the second membrane separation stage. In the anaerobic expanded granular sludge bed (EGSB) reactor, about 43% organic matter in POME was converted into biogas, and COD reduction efficiency reached 93% and 22% in EGSB and the following aerobic reactor, respectively. With the treatment in the first biological stage, suspended solids and oil also decreased to a low degree. All these alleviated the membrane fouling and prolonged the membrane life. In the membrane process unit, almost all the suspended solids were captured by UF membranes, while RO membrane excluded most of the dissolved solids or inorganic salts from RO permeate. After the whole treatment processes, organic matter in POME expressed by BOD and COD was removed almost thoroughly. Suspended solids and color were not detectable in RO permeate any more, and mineral elements only existed in trace amount (except for K and Na). The high-quality effluent was crystal clear and could be used as the boiler feed water.

  11. The structural biology center at the APS: an integrated user facility for macromolecular crystallography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosenbaum, G.; Westbrook, E.M.

    1997-01-01

    The Structural Biology Center (SBC) has developed and operates a sector (undulator and bending magnet) of the APS as a user facility for macromolecular crystallography. Crystallographically determined structures of proteins, nucleic acids and their complexes with proteins, viruses, and complexes between macromolecules and small ligands have become of central importance in molecular and cellular biology. Major design goals were to make the extremely high brilliance of the APS available for brilliance limited studies, and to achieve a high throughput of less demanding studies, as well as optimization for MAS-phasing. Crystal samples will include extremely small crystals, crystals with large unit cells (viruses, ribosomes, etc.) and ensembles of closely similar crystal structures for drug design, protein engineering, etc. Data are recorded on a 3000x3000 pixel CCD-area detector (optionally on image plates). The x-ray optics of both beamlines has been designed to produce a highly demagnified image of the source in order to match the focal size with the sizes of the sample and the resolution element of the detector. Vertical focusing is achieved by a flat, cylindrically bent mirror. Horizontal focusing is achieved by sagitally bending the second crystal of the double crystal monochromator. Monochromatic fluxes of 1.3 * 10 13 ph/s into focal sizes of 0.08 mm (horizontal)x0.04 mm (vertical) FWHM (flux density 3.5 * 10 15 ph/s/mm 2 ) have been recorded.copyright 1997 American Institute of Physics

  12. Integral equation models for the inverse problem of biological ion channel distributions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    French, D A; Groetsch, C W

    2007-01-01

    Olfactory cilia are thin hair-like filaments that extend from olfactory receptor neurons into the nasal mucus. Transduction of an odor into an electrical signal is accomplished by a depolarizing influx of ions through cyclic-nucleotide-gated channels in the membrane that forms the lateral surface of the cilium. In an experimental procedure developed by S. Kleene, a cilium is detached at its base and drawn into a recording pipette. The cilium base is then immersed in a bath of a channel activating agent (cAMP) which is allowed to diffuse into the cilium interior, opening channels as it goes and initiating a transmembrane current. The total current is recorded as a function of time and serves as data for a nonlinear integral equation of the first kind modeling the spatial distribution of ion channels along the length of the cilium. We discuss some linear Fredholm integral equations that result from simplifications of this model. A numerical procedure is proposed for a class of integral equations suggested by this simplified model and numerical results using simulated and laboratory data are presented

  13. BacillOndex: An Integrated Data Resource for Systems and Synthetic Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Misirli Goksel

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available BacillOndex is an extension of the Ondex data integration system, providing a semantically annotated, integrated knowledge base for the model Gram-positive bacterium Bacillus subtilis. This application allows a user to mine a variety of B. subtilis data sources, and analyse the resulting integrated dataset, which contains data about genes, gene products and their interactions. The data can be analysed either manually, by browsing using Ondex, or computationally via a Web services interface. We describe the process of creating a BacillOndex instance, and describe the use of the system for the analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms in B. subtilis Marburg. The Marburg strain is the progenitor of the widely-used laboratory strain B. subtilis 168. We identified 27 SNPs with predictable phenotypic effects, including genetic traits for known phenotypes. We conclude that BacillOndex is a valuable tool for the systems-level investigation of, and hypothesis generation about, this important biotechnology workhorse. Such understanding contributes to our ability to construct synthetic genetic circuits in this organism.

  14. BacillOndex: An Integrated Data Resource for Systems and Synthetic Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Misirli, Goksel; Wipat, Anil; Mullen, Joseph; James, Katherine; Pocock, Matthew; Smith, Wendy; Allenby, Nick; Hallinan, Jennifer S

    2013-06-01

    BacillOndex is an extension of the Ondex data integration system, providing a semantically annotated, integrated knowledge base for the model Gram-positive bacterium Bacillus subtilis. This application allows a user to mine a variety of B. subtilis data sources, and analyse the resulting integrated dataset, which contains data about genes, gene products and their interactions. The data can be analysed either manually, by browsing using Ondex, or computationally via a Web services interface. We describe the process of creating a BacillOndex instance, and describe the use of the system for the analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms in B. subtilis Marburg. The Marburg strain is the progenitor of the widely-used laboratory strain B. subtilis 168. We identified 27 SNPs with predictable phenotypic effects, including genetic traits for known phenotypes. We conclude that BacillOndex is a valuable tool for the systems-level investigation of, and hypothesis generation about, this important biotechnology workhorse. Such understanding contributes to our ability to construct synthetic genetic circuits in this organism.

  15. CaliBayes and BASIS: integrated tools for the calibration, simulation and storage of biological simulation models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yuhui; Lawless, Conor; Gillespie, Colin S; Wu, Jake; Boys, Richard J; Wilkinson, Darren J

    2010-05-01

    Dynamic simulation modelling of complex biological processes forms the backbone of systems biology. Discrete stochastic models are particularly appropriate for describing sub-cellular molecular interactions, especially when critical molecular species are thought to be present at low copy-numbers. For example, these stochastic effects play an important role in models of human ageing, where ageing results from the long-term accumulation of random damage at various biological scales. Unfortunately, realistic stochastic simulation of discrete biological processes is highly computationally intensive, requiring specialist hardware, and can benefit greatly from parallel and distributed approaches to computation and analysis. For these reasons, we have developed the BASIS system for the simulation and storage of stochastic SBML models together with associated simulation results. This system is exposed as a set of web services to allow users to incorporate its simulation tools into their workflows. Parameter inference for stochastic models is also difficult and computationally expensive. The CaliBayes system provides a set of web services (together with an R package for consuming these and formatting data) which addresses this problem for SBML models. It uses a sequential Bayesian MCMC method, which is powerful and flexible, providing very rich information. However this approach is exceptionally computationally intensive and requires the use of a carefully designed architecture. Again, these tools are exposed as web services to allow users to take advantage of this system. In this article, we describe these two systems and demonstrate their integrated use with an example workflow to estimate the parameters of a simple model of Saccharomyces cerevisiae growth on agar plates.

  16. Agent-based re-engineering of ErbB signaling: a modeling pipeline for integrative systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Arya A; Ajayakumar Darsana, T; Jacob, Elizabeth

    2017-03-01

    Experiments in systems biology are generally supported by a computational model which quantitatively estimates the parameters of the system by finding the best fit to the experiment. Mathematical models have proved to be successful in reverse engineering the system. The data generated is interpreted to understand the dynamics of the underlying phenomena. The question we have sought to answer is that - is it possible to use an agent-based approach to re-engineer a biological process, making use of the available knowledge from experimental and modelling efforts? Can the bottom-up approach benefit from the top-down exercise so as to create an integrated modelling formalism for systems biology? We propose a modelling pipeline that learns from the data given by reverse engineering, and uses it for re-engineering the system, to carry out in-silico experiments. A mathematical model that quantitatively predicts co-expression of EGFR-HER2 receptors in activation and trafficking has been taken for this study. The pipeline architecture takes cues from the population model that gives the rates of biochemical reactions, to formulate knowledge-based rules for the particle model. Agent-based simulations using these rules, support the existing facts on EGFR-HER2 dynamics. We conclude that, re-engineering models, built using the results of reverse engineering, opens up the possibility of harnessing the power pack of data which now lies scattered in literature. Virtual experiments could then become more realistic when empowered with the findings of empirical cell biology and modelling studies. Implemented on the Agent Modelling Framework developed in-house. C ++ code templates available in Supplementary material . liz.csir@gmail.com. Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com

  17. Development of an Online and Offline Integration Hypothesis for Healthy Internet Use: Theory and Preliminary Evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Xiaoyan; Su, Wenliang; Potenza, Marc N

    2018-01-01

    The Internet has become an integral part of our daily life, and how to make the best use of the Internet is important to both individuals and the society. Based on previous studies, an Online and Offline Integration Hypothesis is proposed to suggest a framework for considering harmonious and balanced Internet use. The Integration Hypothesis proposes that healthier patterns of Internet usage may be achieved through harmonious integration of people's online and offline worlds. An online/offline integration is proposed to unite self-identity, interpersonal relationships, and social functioning with both cognitive and behavioral aspects by following the principles of communication, transfer, consistency, and "offline-first" priorities. To begin to test the hypothesis regarding the relationship between integration level and psychological outcomes, data for the present study were collected from 626 undergraduate students (41.5% males). Participants completed scales for online and offline integration, Internet addiction, pros and cons of Internet use, loneliness, extraversion, and life satisfaction. The findings revealed that subjects with higher level of online/offline integration have higher life satisfaction, greater extraversion, and more positive perceptions of the Internet and less loneliness, lower Internet addiction, and fewer negative perceptions of the Internet. Integration mediates the link between extraversion and psychological outcomes, and it may be the mechanism underlying the difference between the "rich get richer" and social compensation hypotheses. The implications of the online and offline integration hypothesis are discussed.

  18. Development of an Online and Offline Integration Hypothesis for Healthy Internet Use: Theory and Preliminary Evidence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoyan Lin

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The Internet has become an integral part of our daily life, and how to make the best use of the Internet is important to both individuals and the society. Based on previous studies, an Online and Offline Integration Hypothesis is proposed to suggest a framework for considering harmonious and balanced Internet use. The Integration Hypothesis proposes that healthier patterns of Internet usage may be achieved through harmonious integration of people’s online and offline worlds. An online/offline integration is proposed to unite self-identity, interpersonal relationships, and social functioning with both cognitive and behavioral aspects by following the principles of communication, transfer, consistency, and “offline-first” priorities. To begin to test the hypothesis regarding the relationship between integration level and psychological outcomes, data for the present study were collected from 626 undergraduate students (41.5% males. Participants completed scales for online and offline integration, Internet addiction, pros and cons of Internet use, loneliness, extraversion, and life satisfaction. The findings revealed that subjects with higher level of online/offline integration have higher life satisfaction, greater extraversion, and more positive perceptions of the Internet and less loneliness, lower Internet addiction, and fewer negative perceptions of the Internet. Integration mediates the link between extraversion and psychological outcomes, and it may be the mechanism underlying the difference between the “rich get richer” and social compensation hypotheses. The implications of the online and offline integration hypothesis are discussed.

  19. Development of an Online and Offline Integration Hypothesis for Healthy Internet Use: Theory and Preliminary Evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Xiaoyan; Su, Wenliang; Potenza, Marc N.

    2018-01-01

    The Internet has become an integral part of our daily life, and how to make the best use of the Internet is important to both individuals and the society. Based on previous studies, an Online and Offline Integration Hypothesis is proposed to suggest a framework for considering harmonious and balanced Internet use. The Integration Hypothesis proposes that healthier patterns of Internet usage may be achieved through harmonious integration of people’s online and offline worlds. An online/offline integration is proposed to unite self-identity, interpersonal relationships, and social functioning with both cognitive and behavioral aspects by following the principles of communication, transfer, consistency, and “offline-first” priorities. To begin to test the hypothesis regarding the relationship between integration level and psychological outcomes, data for the present study were collected from 626 undergraduate students (41.5% males). Participants completed scales for online and offline integration, Internet addiction, pros and cons of Internet use, loneliness, extraversion, and life satisfaction. The findings revealed that subjects with higher level of online/offline integration have higher life satisfaction, greater extraversion, and more positive perceptions of the Internet and less loneliness, lower Internet addiction, and fewer negative perceptions of the Internet. Integration mediates the link between extraversion and psychological outcomes, and it may be the mechanism underlying the difference between the “rich get richer” and social compensation hypotheses. The implications of the online and offline integration hypothesis are discussed. PMID:29706910

  20. Introduction to the Special Issue: Beyond traits: integrating behaviour into plant ecology and biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cahill, James F

    2015-10-26

    The way that plants are conceptualized in the context of ecological understanding is changing. In one direction, a reductionist school is pulling plants apart into a list of measured 'traits', from which ecological function and outcomes of species interactions may be inferred. This special issue offers an alternative, and more holistic, view: that the ecological functions performed by a plant will be a consequence not only of their complement of traits but also of the ways in which their component parts are used in response to environmental and social conditions. This is the realm of behavioural ecology, a field that has greatly advanced our understanding of animal biology, ecology and evolution. Included in this special issue are 10 articles focussing not on the tried and true metaphor that plant growth is similar to animal movement, but instead on how application of principles from animal behaviour can improve our ability to understand plant biology and ecology. The goals are not to draw false parallels, nor to anthropomorphize plant biology, but instead to demonstrate how existing and robust theory based on fundamental principles can provide novel understanding for plants. Key to this approach is the recognition that behaviour and intelligence are not the same. Many organisms display complex behaviours despite a lack of cognition (as it is traditionally understood) or any hint of a nervous system. The applicability of behavioural concepts to plants is further enhanced with the realization that all organisms face the same harsh forces of natural selection in the context of finding resources, mates and coping with neighbours. As these ecological realities are often highly variable in space and time, it is not surprising that all organisms-even plants-exhibit complex behaviours to handle this variability. The articles included here address diverse topics in behavioural ecology, as applied to plants: general conceptual understanding, plant nutrient foraging, root

  1. toxoMine: an integrated omics data warehouse for Toxoplasma gondii systems biology research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhee, David B; Croken, Matthew McKnight; Shieh, Kevin R; Sullivan, Julie; Micklem, Gos; Kim, Kami; Golden, Aaron

    2015-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) is an obligate intracellular parasite that must monitor for changes in the host environment and respond accordingly; however, it is still not fully known which genetic or epigenetic factors are involved in regulating virulence traits of T. gondii. There are on-going efforts to elucidate the mechanisms regulating the stage transition process via the application of high-throughput epigenomics, genomics and proteomics techniques. Given the range of experimental conditions and the typical yield from such high-throughput techniques, a new challenge arises: how to effectively collect, organize and disseminate the generated data for subsequent data analysis. Here, we describe toxoMine, which provides a powerful interface to support sophisticated integrative exploration of high-throughput experimental data and metadata, providing researchers with a more tractable means toward understanding how genetic and/or epigenetic factors play a coordinated role in determining pathogenicity of T. gondii. As a data warehouse, toxoMine allows integration of high-throughput data sets with public T. gondii data. toxoMine is also able to execute complex queries involving multiple data sets with straightforward user interaction. Furthermore, toxoMine allows users to define their own parameters during the search process that gives users near-limitless search and query capabilities. The interoperability feature also allows users to query and examine data available in other InterMine systems, which would effectively augment the search scope beyond what is available to toxoMine. toxoMine complements the major community database ToxoDB by providing a data warehouse that enables more extensive integrative studies for T. gondii. Given all these factors, we believe it will become an indispensable resource to the greater infectious disease research community. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press.

  2. Palm oil mill effluent treatment using a two-stage microbial fuel cells system integrated with immobilized biological aerated filters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Jia; Zhu, Xiuping; Ni, Jinren; Borthwick, Alistair

    2010-04-01

    An integrated system of two-stage microbial fuel cells (MFCs) and immobilized biological aerated filters (I-BAFs) was used to treat palm oil mill effluent (POME) at laboratory scale. By replacing the conventional two-stage up-flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) with a newly proposed upflow membrane-less microbial fuel cell (UML-MFC) in the integrated system, significant improvements on NH(3)-N removal were observed and direct electricity generation implemented in both MFC1 and MFC2. Moreover, the coupled iron-carbon micro-electrolysis in the cathode of MFC2 further enhanced treatment efficiency of organic compounds. The I-BAFs played a major role in further removal of NH(3)-N and COD. For influent COD and NH(3)-N of 10,000 and 125 mg/L, respectively, the final effluents COD and NH(3)-N were below 350 and 8 mg/L, with removal rates higher than 96.5% and 93.6%. The GC-MS analysis indicated that most of the contaminants were satisfactorily biodegraded by the integrated system. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Integration of metabolomic and transcriptomic networks in pregnant women reveals biological pathways and predictive signatures associated with preeclampsia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Rachel S; Croteau-Chonka, Damien C; Dahlin, Amber; Mirzakhani, Hooman; Wu, Ann C; Wan, Emily S; McGeachie, Michael J; Qiu, Weiliang; Sordillo, Joanne E; Al-Garawi, Amal; Gray, Kathryn J; McElrath, Thomas F; Carey, Vincent J; Clish, Clary B; Litonjua, Augusto A; Weiss, Scott T; Lasky-Su, Jessica A

    2017-01-01

    Preeclampsia is a leading cause of maternal and fetal mortality worldwide, yet its exact pathogenesis remains elusive. This study, nested within the Vitamin D Antenatal Asthma Reduction Trial (VDAART), aimed to develop integrated omics models of preeclampsia that have utility in both prediction and in the elucidation of underlying biological mechanisms. Metabolomic profiling was performed on first trimester plasma samples of 47 pregnant women from VDAART who subsequently developed preeclampsia and 62 controls with healthy pregnancies, using liquid-chromatography tandem mass-spectrometry. Metabolomic profiles were generated based on logistic regression models and assessed using Received Operator Characteristic Curve analysis. These profiles were compared to profiles from generated using third trimester samples. The first trimester metabolite profile was then integrated with a pre-existing transcriptomic profile using network methods. In total, 72 (0.9%) metabolite features were associated (pIntegration with the transcriptomic signature refined these results suggesting a particular role for lipid imbalance, immune function and the circulatory system. These findings suggest it is possible to develop a predictive metabolomic profile of preeclampsia. This profile is characterized by changes in lipid and amino acid metabolism and dysregulation of immune response and can be refined through interaction with transcriptomic data. However validation in larger and more diverse populations is required.

  4. Conservation Physiology and Conservation Pathogens: White-Nose Syndrome and Integrative Biology for Host-Pathogen Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willis, Craig K R

    2015-10-01

    Conservation physiology aims to apply an understanding of physiological mechanisms to management of imperiled species, populations, or ecosystems. One challenge for physiologists hoping to apply their expertise to conservation is connecting the mechanisms we study, often in the laboratory, with the vital rates of populations in the wild. There is growing appreciation that infectious pathogens can threaten populations and species, and represent an important issue for conservation. Conservation physiology has much to offer in terms of addressing the threat posed to some host species by infectious pathogens. At the same time, the well-developed theoretical framework of disease ecology could provide a model to help advance the application of physiology to a range of other conservation issues. Here, I use white-nose syndrome (WNS) in hibernating North American bats as an example of a conservation problem for which integrative physiological research has been a critical part of research and management. The response to WNS highlights the importance of a well-developed theoretical framework for the application of conservation physiology to a particular threat. I review what is known about physiological mechanisms associated with mortality from WNS and emphasize the value of combining a strong theoretical background with integrative physiological studies in order to connect physiological mechanisms with population processes and thereby maximize the potential benefits of conservation physiology. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. Performance Sustainability and Integrated Reporting: Empirical Evidence from Mandatory and Voluntary Adoption Contexts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvatore Loprevite

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper looks at the topic of regulation of integrated reporting for listed companies, with the aim of contributing to the debate on the usefulness of introducing a mandatory regime, both from the perspective of integrated performance sustainability of companies and from that of relevance of information for providers of financial capital. The study is based on empirical research carried out on a sample composed of companies operating in territories where the adoption of integrated reporting is voluntary (Europe and those operating in a country where adoption is mandatory (South Africa. The research shows that (a in voluntary regimes, levels of integrated performance achieved by companies are higher; (b mandatory regulation produces positive effects on integrated performance levels in the medium term; (c integrated performance indicators are value-relevant, though having different levels of relevance under the two regimes examined.

  6. The Empirical Evidence on Government Bond Market Integration in East Asia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lian Liu

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available This research intends to investigate the progress made in East Asian bond market integration thus far. Price-based measures (AAD indicator and beta-convergence measure, quantity-based measures and econometric techniques (co-integration test, error correction model based Granger causality test are employed in the analysis. Even though East Asian government bond markets have become more integrated since 2001, the differentials among the markets still remain significantly high. The bond market integration process seems slow. The convergence of bond markets sped up in 2003 and after the 2008 world financial crisis, implying the important role of government policies in integrating the regional bond markets. East Asian bond market integration may need more government-directed measures.

  7. Using pedagogical approaches to influence evidence-based practice integration - processes and recommendations: findings from a grounded theory study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malik, Gulzar; McKenna, Lisa; Griffiths, Debra

    2017-04-01

    The study aimed to explore the processes undertaken by nurse academics when integrating evidence-based practice (EBP) into their teaching and learning practices. This article focuses on pedagogical approaches employed by academics to influence evidence-based practice integration into undergraduate programs across Australian universities. Nursing academics are challenged to incorporate a variety of teaching and learning strategies to teach evidence-based practice and determine their effectiveness. However, literature suggests that there are limited studies available focusing on pedagogical approaches in evidence-based practice education. A constructivist grounded theory methodology, informed by Charmaz was used for this study. Data were collected during 2014 from 23 nurse academics across Australian universities through semi-structured interviews. Additionally, nine were observed during teaching of undergraduate students. Twenty subject outlines were also analysed following Charmaz's approach of data analysis. 'Influencing EBP integration' describes the pedagogical approaches employed by academics to incorporate EBP knowledge and skills into undergraduate curricula. With the use of various teaching and learning strategies, academics attempted to contextualize EBP by engaging students with activities aiming to link evidence to practice and with the EBP process. Although, some strategies appeared to be engaging, others were traditional and seemed to be disengaging for students due to the challenges experienced by participants that impeded the use of the most effective teaching methods. Study findings offer valuable insights into the teaching practices and identify some key challenges that require the adoption of appropriate strategies to ensure future nurses are well prepared in the paradigm of evidence-based practice. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Deep Time Data Infrastructure: Integrating Our Current Geologic and Biologic Databases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolankowski, S. M.; Fox, P. A.; Ma, X.; Prabhu, A.

    2016-12-01

    As our knowledge of Earth's geologic and mineralogical history grows, we require more efficient methods of sharing immense amounts of data. Databases across numerous disciplines have been utilized to offer extensive information on very specific Epochs of Earth's history up to its current state, i.e. Fossil record, rock composition, proteins, etc. These databases could be a powerful force in identifying previously unseen correlations such as relationships between minerals and proteins. Creating a unifying site that provides a portal to these databases will aid in our ability as a collaborative scientific community to utilize our findings more effectively. The Deep-Time Data Infrastructure (DTDI) is currently being defined as part of a larger effort to accomplish this goal. DTDI will not be a new database, but an integration of existing resources. Current geologic and related databases were identified, documentation of their schema was established and will be presented as a stage by stage progression. Through conceptual modeling focused around variables from their combined records, we will determine the best way to integrate these databases using common factors. The Deep-Time Data Infrastructure will allow geoscientists to bridge gaps in data and further our understanding of our Earth's history.

  9. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M. L.; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    The term 'synergy' - from the Greek synergia - means 'working together'. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project ;The Hand Embodied; (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies.

  10. Integrated Structural Biology for α-Helical Membrane Protein Structure Determination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, Yan; Fischer, Axel W; Teixeira, Pedro; Weiner, Brian; Meiler, Jens

    2018-04-03

    While great progress has been made, only 10% of the nearly 1,000 integral, α-helical, multi-span membrane protein families are represented by at least one experimentally determined structure in the PDB. Previously, we developed the algorithm BCL::MP-Fold, which samples the large conformational space of membrane proteins de novo by assembling predicted secondary structure elements guided by knowledge-based potentials. Here, we present a case study of rhodopsin fold determination by integrating sparse and/or low-resolution restraints from multiple experimental techniques including electron microscopy, electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy, and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Simultaneous incorporation of orthogonal experimental restraints not only significantly improved the sampling accuracy but also allowed identification of the correct fold, which is demonstrated by a protein size-normalized transmembrane root-mean-square deviation as low as 1.2 Å. The protocol developed in this case study can be used for the determination of unknown membrane protein folds when limited experimental restraints are available. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Integrated radiomic framework for breast cancer and tumor biology using advanced machine learning and multiparametric MRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parekh, Vishwa S; Jacobs, Michael A

    2017-01-01

    Radiomics deals with the high throughput extraction of quantitative textural information from radiological images that not visually perceivable by radiologists. However, the biological correlation between radiomic features and different tissues of interest has not been established. To that end, we present the radiomic feature mapping framework to generate radiomic MRI texture image representations called the radiomic feature maps (RFM) and correlate the RFMs with quantitative texture values, breast tissue biology using quantitative MRI and classify benign from malignant tumors. We tested our radiomic feature mapping framework on a retrospective cohort of 124 patients (26 benign and 98 malignant) who underwent multiparametric breast MR imaging at 3 T. The MRI parameters used were T1-weighted imaging, T2-weighted imaging, dynamic contrast enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI) and diffusion weighted imaging (DWI). The RFMs were computed by convolving MRI images with statistical filters based on first order statistics and gray level co-occurrence matrix features. Malignant lesions demonstrated significantly higher entropy on both post contrast DCE-MRI (Benign-DCE entropy: 5.72 ± 0.12, Malignant-DCE entropy: 6.29 ± 0.06, p  = 0.0002) and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) maps as compared to benign lesions (Benign-ADC entropy: 5.65 ± 0.15, Malignant ADC entropy: 6.20 ± 0.07, p  = 0.002). There was no significant difference between glandular tissue entropy values in the two groups. Furthermore, the RFMs from DCE-MRI and DWI demonstrated significantly different RFM curves for benign and malignant lesions indicating their correlation to tumor vascular and cellular heterogeneity respectively. There were significant differences in the quantitative MRI metrics of ADC and perfusion. The multiview IsoSVM model classified benign and malignant breast tumors with sensitivity and specificity of 93 and 85%, respectively, with an AUC of 0.91.

  12. Global Value Chain Integration and Productivity : Evidence from Enterprise Surveys in Namibia, South Africa, and Swaziland

    OpenAIRE

    Winkler, Deborah; Farole, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    In order to adequately measure a firm’s participation in GVCs in this context, it is important to first identify the different forms through which GVC integration can affect domestic firms’ productivity. Integrating a country’s domestic suppliers into GVCs increases the possibility for productivity gains through exporting to a buyer abroad or supplying to a multinational in the country. Bu...

  13. Integrity violations and corruption in Western public governance: Empirical evidence and reflection from the Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Graaf, Gjalt; Huberts, L.W.J.C.; Strüwer, T.

    2018-01-01

    How often integrity violations occur in Western governance, and the precise nature of these violations, is as yet not very clear. Data on this subject—drawn from experience in the Netherlands—are presented here. The main research question is: What is the scale of integrity violations within Dutch

  14. Conceptual Integration of Arithmetic Operations with Real-World Knowledge: Evidence from Event-Related Potentials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guthormsen, Amy M.; Fisher, Kristie J.; Bassok, Miriam; Osterhout, Lee; DeWolf, Melissa; Holyoak, Keith J.

    2016-01-01

    Research on language processing has shown that the disruption of conceptual integration gives rise to specific patterns of event-related brain potentials (ERPs)--N400 and P600 effects. Here, we report similar ERP effects when adults performed cross-domain conceptual integration of analogous semantic and mathematical relations. In a problem-solving…

  15. Fostering integrity in postgraduate research: an evidence-based policy and support framework.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahmud, Saadia; Bretag, Tracey

    2014-01-01

    Postgraduate research students have a unique position in the debate on integrity in research as students and novice researchers. To assess how far policies for integrity in postgraduate research meet the needs of students as "research trainees," we reviewed online policies for integrity in postgraduate research at nine particular Australian universities against the Australian Code for Responsible Conduct of Research (the Code) and the five core elements of exemplary academic integrity policy identified by Bretag et al. (2011 ), i.e., access, approach, responsibility, detail, and support. We found inconsistency with the Code in the definition of research misconduct and a lack of adequate detail and support. Based on our analysis, previous research, and the literature, we propose a framework for policy and support for postgraduate research that encompasses a consistent and educative approach to integrity maintained across the university at all levels of scholarship and for all stakeholders.

  16. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M.L.; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2017-01-01

    The term ‘synergy’ – from the Greek synergia – means ‘working together’. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project “The Hand Embodied” (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies. PMID:26923030

  17. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M L; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    The term 'synergy' - from the Greek synergia - means 'working together'. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project "The Hand Embodied" (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Integrated Genomic Analysis of Diverse Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells from the Progenitor Cell Biology Consortium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salomonis, Nathan; Dexheimer, Phillip J; Omberg, Larsson; Schroll, Robin; Bush, Stacy; Huo, Jeffrey; Schriml, Lynn; Ho Sui, Shannan; Keddache, Mehdi; Mayhew, Christopher; Shanmukhappa, Shiva Kumar; Wells, James; Daily, Kenneth; Hubler, Shane; Wang, Yuliang; Zambidis, Elias; Margolin, Adam; Hide, Winston; Hatzopoulos, Antonis K; Malik, Punam; Cancelas, Jose A; Aronow, Bruce J; Lutzko, Carolyn

    2016-07-12

    The rigorous characterization of distinct induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) derived from multiple reprogramming technologies, somatic sources, and donors is required to understand potential sources of variability and downstream potential. To achieve this goal, the Progenitor Cell Biology Consortium performed comprehensive experimental and genomic analyses of 58 iPSC from ten laboratories generated using a variety of reprogramming genes, vectors, and cells. Associated global molecular characterization studies identified functionally informative correlations in gene expression, DNA methylation, and/or copy-number variation among key developmental and oncogenic regulators as a result of donor, sex, line stability, reprogramming technology, and cell of origin. Furthermore, X-chromosome inactivation in PSC produced highly correlated differences in teratoma-lineage staining and regulator expression upon differentiation. All experimental results, and raw, processed, and metadata from these analyses, including powerful tools, are interactively accessible from a new online portal at https://www.synapse.org to serve as a reusable resource for the stem cell community. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Modeling systems-level dynamics: Understanding without mechanistic explanation in integrative systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacLeod, Miles; Nersessian, Nancy J

    2015-02-01

    In this paper we draw upon rich ethnographic data of two systems biology labs to explore the roles of explanation and understanding in large-scale systems modeling. We illustrate practices that depart from the goal of dynamic mechanistic explanation for the sake of more limited modeling goals. These processes use abstract mathematical formulations of bio-molecular interactions and data fitting techniques which we call top-down abstraction to trade away accurate mechanistic accounts of large-scale systems for specific information about aspects of those systems. We characterize these practices as pragmatic responses to the constraints many modelers of large-scale systems face, which in turn generate more limited pragmatic non-mechanistic forms of understanding of systems. These forms aim at knowledge of how to predict system responses in order to manipulate and control some aspects of them. We propose that this analysis of understanding provides a way to interpret what many systems biologists are aiming for in practice when they talk about the objective of a "systems-level understanding." Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Design of CMOS analog integrated fractional-order circuits applications in medicine and biology

    CERN Document Server

    Tsirimokou, Georgia; Elwakil, Ahmed

    2017-01-01

    This book describes the design and realization of analog fractional-order circuits, which are suitable for on-chip implementation, capable of low-voltage operation and electronic adjustment of their characteristics. The authors provide a brief introduction to fractional-order calculus, followed by design issues for fractional-order circuits of various orders and types. The benefits of this approach are demonstrated with current-mode and voltage-mode filter designs. Electronically tunable emulators of fractional-order capacitors and inductors are presented, where the behavior of the corresponding chips fabricated using the AMS 0.35um CMOS process has been experimentally verified. Applications of fractional-order circuits are demonstrated, including a pre-processing stage suitable for the implementation of the Pan-Tompkins algorithm for detecting the QRS complexes of an electrocardiogram (ECG), a fully tunable implementation of the Cole-Cole model used for the modeling of biological tissues, and a simple, non-i...

  1. Luminopsins integrate opto- and chemogenetics by using physical and biological light sources for opsin activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berglund, Ken; Clissold, Kara; Li, Haofang E.; Wen, Lei; Park, Sung Young; Gleixner, Jan; Klein, Marguerita E.; Lu, Dongye; Barter, Joseph W.; Rossi, Mark A.; Augustine, George J.; Yin, Henry H.; Hochgeschwender, Ute

    2016-01-01

    Luminopsins are fusion proteins of luciferase and opsin that allow interrogation of neuronal circuits at different temporal and spatial resolutions by choosing either extrinsic physical or intrinsic biological light for its activation. Building on previous development of fusions of wild-type Gaussia luciferase with channelrhodopsin, here we expanded the utility of luminopsins by fusing bright Gaussia luciferase variants with either channelrhodopsin to excite neurons (luminescent opsin, LMO) or a proton pump to inhibit neurons (inhibitory LMO, iLMO). These improved LMOs could reliably activate or silence neurons in vitro and in vivo. Expression of the improved LMO in hippocampal circuits not only enabled mapping of synaptic activation of CA1 neurons with fine spatiotemporal resolution but also could drive rhythmic circuit excitation over a large spatiotemporal scale. Furthermore, virus-mediated expression of either LMO or iLMO in the substantia nigra in vivo produced not only the expected bidirectional control of single unit activity but also opposing effects on circling behavior in response to systemic injection of a luciferase substrate. Thus, although preserving the ability to be activated by external light sources, LMOs expand the use of optogenetics by making the same opsins accessible to noninvasive, chemogenetic control, thereby allowing the same probe to manipulate neuronal activity over a range of spatial and temporal scales. PMID:26733686

  2. Integration into plant biology and soil science has provided insights into the total environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shao, Hongbo; Lu, Haiying; Xu, Gang; Marian, Brestic

    2017-02-01

    The total environment includes 5 closely-linking circles, in which biosphere and lithosphere are the active core. As global population increases and urbanization process accelerates, arable land is gradually decreasing under global climate change and the pressure of various types of environmental pollution. This case is especially for China. Land is the most important resources for human beings' survival. How to increase and manage arable land is the key for sustainable agriculture development. China has extensive marshy land that can be reclamated for the better potential land resources under the pre- condition of protecting the environment, which will be a good way for enlarging globally and managing arable land. Related studies have been conducted in China for the past 30years and now many results with obvious practical efficiency have been obtained. For summarizing these results, salt-soil will be the main target and related contents such as nutrient transport, use types, biodiversity and interactions with plants from molecular biology to ecology will be covered, in which the interactions among biosphere, lithosphere, atmosphere and anthroposphere will be focused on. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Integrating biological treatment of crop residue into a hydroponic sweetpotato culture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trotman, A. A.; David, P. P.; Bonsi, C. K.; Hill, W. A.; Mortley, D. G.; Loretan, P. A.

    1997-01-01

    Residual biomass from hydroponic culture of sweetpotato [Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam.] was degraded using natural bacterial soil isolates. Sweetpotato was grown for 120 days in hydroponic culture with a nutrient solution comprised of a ratio of 80% modified half Hoagland solution to 20% filtered effluent from an aerobic starch hydrolysis bioreactor. The phytotoxicity of the effluent was assayed with `Waldmann's Green' lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.) and the ratio selected after a 60-day bioassay using sweetpotato plants propagated vegetatively from cuttings. Controlled environment chamber experiments were conducted to investigate the impact of filtrate from biological treatment of crop residue on growth and storage root production with plants grown in a modified half Hoagland solution. Incorporation of bioreactor effluent, reduced storage root yield of `Georgia Jet' sweetpotato but the decrease was not statistically significant when compared with yield for plants cultured in a modified half Hoagland solution without filtrate. However, yield of `TU-82-155' sweetpotato was significantly reduced when grown in a modified half Hoagland solution into which filtered effluent had been incorporated. Total biomass was significantly reduced for both sweetpotato cultivars when grown in bioreactor effluent. The leaf area and dry matter accumulation were significantly (P < 0.05) reduced for both cultivars when grown in solution culture containing 20% filtered effluent.

  4. Morphological, molecular and biological evidence reveal two cryptic species in Mecinus janthinus Germar (Coleoptera, Curculionidae), a successful biological control agent of Dalmatian toadflax, Linaria dalmatica (Lamiales, Plantaginaceae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivo Tosevski; Roberto Caldara; Jelena Jovic; Gerardo Hernandez-Vera; Cosimo Baviera; Andre Gassmann; Brent C. Emerson

    2011-01-01

    A combined morphological, molecular and biological study shows that the weevil species presently named Mecinus janthinus is actually composed of two different cryptic species: M. janthinus Germar, 1821 and M. janthiniformis Tosevski & Caldara sp.n. These species are morphologically distinguishable from each other by a few very subtle morphological characters. On...

  5. The integration of the contents of the subject Physics-Chemistry (I in Biology-Chemistry specialty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Sc. Luis AZCUY LORENZ

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This work is the result of a research task developed in the Natural Sciences Education Department during 2013-2014 academic year, and it emerged from the necessity of solving some insufficiencies in the use of the real potentialities offered by the content of the subject Physics-Chemistry (I, that is part of the curriculum of the Biology-Chemistry career. Its main objective is to offer a set of exercises to contribute to achieve the integration of contents from the subject Physics-chemistry (I in the mentioned career at «Ignacio Agramonte Loynaz» University of Camaguey. The exercises proposed are characterized for being related to the real practice and to other subjects of the career. Their implementation through review lessons, partial tests and final evaluations during the formative experiment made possible a better academic result in the learners overall performance.

  6. Integrated assessment of PAH contamination in the Czech Rivers using a combination of chemical and biological monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blahova, Jana; Divisova, Lenka; Kodes, Vit; Leontovycova, Drahomira; Mach, Samuel; Ocelka, Tomas; Svobodova, Zdenka

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) pollution of selected rivers in the Czech Republic. Integrated evaluation was carried out using combination of chemical and biological monitoring, in which we measured content of 1-hydroxypyrene (1-OHP) in chub bile and priority PAH in water samples obtained by exposing the semipermeable membrane devices at each location. The concentrations of 1-OHP in bile samples and sum of priority PAH in water sampler ranged from 6.8 ng mg protein(-1) to 106.6 ng mg protein(-1) and from 5.2 ng L(-1) to 173.9 ng L(-1), respectively. The highest levels of biliary metabolite and PAH in water were measured at the Odra River (the Bohumín site), which is located in relatively heavily industrialized and polluted region. Statistically significant positive correlation between biliary 1-OHP and sum of PAH in water was also obtained (P < 0.01, r s = 0.806).

  7. Cochrane Qualitative and Implementation Methods Group guidance series-paper 5: methods for integrating qualitative and implementation evidence within intervention effectiveness reviews.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harden, Angela; Thomas, James; Cargo, Margaret; Harris, Janet; Pantoja, Tomas; Flemming, Kate; Booth, Andrew; Garside, Ruth; Hannes, Karin; Noyes, Jane

    2018-05-01

    The Cochrane Qualitative and Implementation Methods Group develops and publishes guidance on the synthesis of qualitative and mixed-method evidence from process evaluations. Despite a proliferation of methods for the synthesis of qualitative research, less attention has focused on how to integrate these syntheses within intervention effectiveness reviews. In this article, we report updated guidance from the group on approaches, methods, and tools, which can be used to integrate the findings from quantitative studies evaluating intervention effectiveness with those from qualitative studies and process evaluations. We draw on conceptual analyses of mixed methods systematic review designs and the range of methods and tools that have been used in published reviews that have successfully integrated different types of evidence. We outline five key methods and tools as devices for integration which vary in terms of the levels at which integration takes place; the specialist skills and expertise required within the review team; and their appropriateness in the context of limited evidence. In situations where the requirement is the integration of qualitative and process evidence within intervention effectiveness reviews, we recommend the use of a sequential approach. Here, evidence from each tradition is synthesized separately using methods consistent with each tradition before integration takes place using a common framework. Reviews which integrate qualitative and process evaluation evidence alongside quantitative evidence on intervention effectiveness in a systematic way are rare. This guidance aims to support review teams to achieve integration and we encourage further development through reflection and formal testing. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. The Desire for Amputation or Paralyzation: Evidence for Structural Brain Anomalies in Body Integrity Identity Disorder (BIID)

    OpenAIRE

    Blom, Rianne M; van Wingen, Guido A; van der Wal, Sija J; Luigjes, Judy; van Dijk, Milenna T; Scholte, H Steven; Denys, D.

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Body Integrity Identity Disorder (BIID) is a condition in which individuals perceive a mismatch between their internal body scheme and physical body shape, resulting in an absolute desire to be either amputated or paralyzed. The condition is hypothesized to be of congenital nature, but evidence for a neuro-anatomical basis is sparse. METHODS: We collected T1-weighted structural magnetic resonance imaging scans on a 3T scanner in eight individuals with BIID and 24 matched healthy c...

  9. The effect of different P fertilizer application (chemical, biologic and integrated on forage quality of two barely varieties (Bahman and Fasieh

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lezhia Zandiyeh

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract To evaluate the effect of different sources of P fertilizer on grain yield and yield components of two barely varieties, this experiment was conducted in Research Farm, College of Agriculture, University of Tehran in 2010. The experimental treatments were arranged as factorial based on randomized complete block design with three replications. The treatments consisted of two barely varieties (Bahman and Fasieh and 7 levels of P fertilizer viz: 1. Control (no fertilizer application, 2. Chemical P fertilizer (based on the soil test, 3. Biological P fertilizer (P solubilizing bacteria, 4. Biological P fertilizer + 100% chemical P fertilizer, 5. Biological P fertilizer + 75% chemical P fertilizer, 6. Biological P fertilizer + 50% chemical P fertilizer, 7. Biological P fertilizer + 25% chemical P fertilizer. The results indicated that the ash percentage in Fasieh was significantly higher than Bahman at Chemical P fertilizer, integrated and Biological P fertilizer + 50% chemical P fertilizer. Except for Biological P fertilizer, DMD percentage was significantly higher in Fasieh compared to Bahman. The highest crude protein percentage was obtained for Fasieh in Biological P fertilizer + 50% chemical P fertilizer for Bahman in Biological P fertilizer + 75% chemical P fertilizer, respectively. The water soluble carbohydrate content was significantly higher in Fasieh at Chemical P fertilizer and integrated fertilizer treatments compared to Bahman variety. The highest NDF in Bahman was observed when received Biological P fertilizer + 50% chemical P fertilizer treatment, while the same results was obtained for Fasieh when received Biological P fertilizer + 100% chemical P fertilizer and Biological P fertilizer + 75% chemical P fertilizer.

  10. Before and after Silent Spring: from chemical pesticides to biological control and integrated pest management--Britain, 1945-1980.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gay, Hannah

    2012-07-01

    The use of chemical pesticides increased considerably after World War II, and ecological damage was noticeable by the late 1940s. This paper outlines some ecological problems experienced during the post-war period in the UK, and in parts of what is now Malaysia. Also discussed is the government's response. Although Rachel Carson's book, Silent Spring (1962), was important in bringing the problems to a wider public, she was not alone in sounding the alarm. Pressure from the public and from British scientists led, among other things, to the founding of the Natural Environment Research Council in 1965. By the 1970s, environmentalism was an important movement, and funding for ecological and environmental research was forthcoming even during the economic recession. Some of the recipients were ecologists working at Imperial College London. Moved by the political climate, and by the evidence of ecological damage, they carried out research on the biological control of insect pests.

  11. Integrating biologically inspired nanomaterials and table-top stereolithography for 3D printed biomimetic osteochondral scaffolds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro, Nathan J.; O'Brien, Joseph; Zhang, Lijie Grace

    2015-08-01

    The osteochondral interface of an arthritic joint is notoriously difficult to regenerate due to its extremely poor regenerative capacity and complex stratified architecture. Native osteochondral tissue extracellular matrix is composed of numerous nanoscale organic and inorganic constituents. Although various tissue engineering strategies exist in addressing osteochondral defects, limitations persist with regards to tissue scaffolding which exhibit biomimetic cues at the nano to micro scale. In an effort to address this, the current work focused on 3D printing biomimetic nanocomposite scaffolds for improved osteochondral tissue regeneration. For this purpose, two biologically-inspired nanomaterials have been synthesized consisting of (1) osteoconductive nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite (nHA) (primary inorganic component of bone) and (2) core-shell poly(lactic-co-glycolic) acid (PLGA) nanospheres encapsulated with chondrogenic transforming growth-factor β1 (TGF-β1) for sustained delivery. Then, a novel table-top stereolithography 3D printer and the nano-ink (i.e., nHA + nanosphere + hydrogel) were employed to fabricate a porous and highly interconnected osteochondral scaffold with hierarchical nano-to-micro structure and spatiotemporal bioactive factor gradients. Our results showed that human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cell adhesion, proliferation, and osteochondral differentiation were greatly improved in the biomimetic graded 3D printed osteochondral construct in vitro. The current work served to illustrate the efficacy of the nano-ink and current 3D printing technology for efficient fabrication of a novel nanocomposite hydrogel scaffold. In addition, tissue-specific growth factors illustrated a synergistic effect leading to increased cell adhesion and directed stem cell differentiation.

  12. Integrated structural biology to unravel molecular mechanisms of protein-RNA recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlundt, Andreas; Tants, Jan-Niklas; Sattler, Michael

    2017-04-15

    Recent advances in RNA sequencing technologies have greatly expanded our knowledge of the RNA landscape in cells, often with spatiotemporal resolution. These techniques identified many new (often non-coding) RNA molecules. Large-scale studies have also discovered novel RNA binding proteins (RBPs), which exhibit single or multiple RNA binding domains (RBDs) for recognition of specific sequence or structured motifs in RNA. Starting from these large-scale approaches it is crucial to unravel the molecular principles of protein-RNA recognition in ribonucleoprotein complexes (RNPs) to understand the underlying mechanisms of gene regulation. Structural biology and biophysical studies at highest possible resolution are key to elucidate molecular mechanisms of RNA recognition by RBPs and how conformational dynamics, weak interactions and cooperative binding contribute to the formation of specific, context-dependent RNPs. While large compact RNPs can be well studied by X-ray crystallography and cryo-EM, analysis of dynamics and weak interaction necessitates the use of solution methods to capture these properties. Here, we illustrate methods to study the structure and conformational dynamics of protein-RNA complexes in solution starting from the identification of interaction partners in a given RNP. Biophysical and biochemical techniques support the characterization of a protein-RNA complex and identify regions relevant in structural analysis. Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) is a powerful tool to gain information on folding, stability and dynamics of RNAs and characterize RNPs in solution. It provides crucial information that is complementary to the static pictures derived from other techniques. NMR can be readily combined with other solution techniques, such as small angle X-ray and/or neutron scattering (SAXS/SANS), electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR), and Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET), which provide information about overall shapes, internal domain

  13. Engineering challenges of BioNEMS: the integration of microfluidics, micro- and nanodevices, models and external control for systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wikswo, J P; Prokop, A; Baudenbacher, F; Cliffel, D; Csukas, B; Velkovsky, M

    2006-08-01

    Systems biology, i.e. quantitative, postgenomic, postproteomic, dynamic, multiscale physiology, addresses in an integrative, quantitative manner the shockwave of genetic and proteomic information using computer models that may eventually have 10(6) dynamic variables with non-linear interactions. Historically, single biological measurements are made over minutes, suggesting the challenge of specifying 10(6) model parameters. Except for fluorescence and micro-electrode recordings, most cellular measurements have inadequate bandwidth to discern the time course of critical intracellular biochemical events. Micro-array expression profiles of thousands of genes cannot determine quantitative dynamic cellular signalling and metabolic variables. Major gaps must be bridged between the computational vision and experimental reality. The analysis of cellular signalling dynamics and control requires, first, micro- and nano-instruments that measure simultaneously multiple extracellular and intracellular variables with sufficient bandwidth; secondly, the ability to open existing internal control and signalling loops; thirdly, external BioMEMS micro-actuators that provide high bandwidth feedback and externally addressable intracellular nano-actuators; and, fourthly, real-time, closed-loop, single-cell control algorithms. The unravelling of the nested and coupled nature of cellular control loops requires simultaneous recording of multiple single-cell signatures. Externally controlled nano-actuators, needed to effect changes in the biochemical, mechanical and electrical environment both outside and inside the cell, will provide a major impetus for nanoscience.

  14. EVALUATING THE ECOLOGICAL RESILIENT DRIVEN PERFORMANCE OF A TROPICAL WASTE STABILIZATION POND SYSTEM USING ECOLOGICAL SIGNATURE OF BIOLOGICAL INTEGRITY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susmita Lahiri Ganguly

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Using ecological signature of biological integrity as a measure of performance, the reclamation efficiency of waste stabilization ponds was evaluated over a period of four years in a tropical sewage treatment plant – cum fish culture consisting of two anaerobic, two facultative and four maturation ponds located serially across the sewage effluent gradient. The four maturation ponds were used for batch culture of fish. Samples of surface and bottom water as well as surface sediment were collected twice a month from different ponds of the system and examined for some nutrient cycling bacteria, primary production, chlorophyll content of micro-algae, phytoplankton, zooplankton abundance, fish growth and water quality parameters. Computation of ecological signature using aerobic mineralization index for heterotrophic and ammonifying bacteria revealed steady increase across the sewage effluent gradient. The heterotrophic and ammonifying bacterial populations appeared to have a direct function with the concentrations of chemical oxygen demand of water. The sum of total scores for different optimal conditions for fish growth increased as a function of the distance from the source of effluent implying that ecological resilience of the waste stabilization ponds has been accomplished by the sedimentation, chelation, and biological functional attributes mediated through redundancy of different subsystems, self- purification capacity of the system as a whole.

  15. Integrating Facebook in Upper Secondary Biology Instruction: A Case Study of Students' Situational Interest and Participation in Learning Communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dohn, Niels Bonderup; Dohn, Nina Bonderup

    2017-12-01

    The sciences are often perceived by students as irrelevant as they do not see the content of science as related to their daily lives. Web 2.0-mediated activities are characterized by user-driven content production, collaboration, and multi-way communication. It has been proposed that employing Web 2.0 in educational activities will promote richer opportunities for making learning personally meaningful, collaborative, and socially relevant. Since Facebook is already in use among youths, it potentially provides a communicative link between educational content and students' lives. The present study was conducted as a case study to provide an inductive, explorative investigation of whether and how the integration of Facebook into upper secondary biology can affect interest in biology and participation in learning communication. The results indicate that the coupling of formal and informal communication practices on Facebook serves to maintain interest and open up new learning possibilities while at the same time creating barriers to communication. These barriers are due to distractions, ethical issues, and a certain depreciation of the activities ensuing from the everydayness of Facebook as a communication platform. In conclusion, use of Facebook as an educational platform is not clearly good or bad.

  16. Integrated DNA methylation and copy-number profiling identify three clinically and biologically relevant groups of anaplastic glioma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiestler, Benedikt; Capper, David; Sill, Martin; Jones, David T W; Hovestadt, Volker; Sturm, Dominik; Koelsche, Christian; Bertoni, Anna; Schweizer, Leonille; Korshunov, Andrey; Weiß, Elisa K; Schliesser, Maximilian G; Radbruch, Alexander; Herold-Mende, Christel; Roth, Pa