WorldWideScience

Sample records for modeling studies revealed

  1. Novel Polyurethane Matrix Systems Reveal a Particular Sustained Release Behavior Studied by Imaging and Computational Modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campiñez, María Dolores; Caraballo, Isidoro; Puchkov, Maxim; Kuentz, Martin

    2017-07-01

    The aim of the present work was to better understand the drug-release mechanism from sustained release matrices prepared with two new polyurethanes, using a novel in silico formulation tool based on 3-dimensional cellular automata. For this purpose, two polymers and theophylline as model drug were used to prepare binary matrix tablets. Each formulation was simulated in silico, and its release behavior was compared to the experimental drug release profiles. Furthermore, the polymer distributions in the tablets were imaged by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and the changes produced by the tortuosity were quantified and verified using experimental data. The obtained results showed that the polymers exhibited a surprisingly high ability for controlling drug release at low excipient concentrations (only 10% w/w of excipient controlled the release of drug during almost 8 h). The mesoscopic in silico model helped to reveal how the novel biopolymers were controlling drug release. The mechanism was found to be a special geometrical arrangement of the excipient particles, creating an almost continuous barrier surrounding the drug in a very effective way, comparable to lipid or waxy excipients but with the advantages of a much higher compactability, stability, and absence of excipient polymorphism.

  2. Revealing transboundary and local air pollutant sources affecting Metro Manila through receptor modeling studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pabroa, Preciosa Corazon B.; Bautista VII, Angel T.; Santos, Flora L.; Racho, Joseph Michael D.

    2011-01-01

    Ambient fine particulate matter (PM 2 .5) levels at the Metro Manila air sampling stations of the Philippine Nuclear Research Research Institute were found to be above the WHO guideline value of 10 μg m 3 indicating, in general, very poor air quality in the area. The elemental components of the fine particulate matter were obtained using the energy-dispersive x-ray fluorescence spectrometry. Positive matrix factorization, a receptor modelling tool, was used to identify and apportion air pollution sources. Location of probable transboundary air pollutants were evaluated using HYSPLIT (Hybrid Single Particle Lagrangian Integrated Trajectory Model) while location of probable local air pollutant sources were determined using the conditional probability function (CPF). Air pollutant sources can either be natural or anthropogenic. This study has shown natural air pollutant sources such as volcanic eruptions from Bulusan volcano in 2006 and from Anatahan volcano in 2005 to have impacted on the region. Fine soils was shown to have originated from China's Mu US Desert some time in 2004. Smoke in the fine fraction in 2006 show indications of coming from forest fires in Sumatra and Borneo. Fine particulate Pb in Valenzuela was shown to be coming from the surrounding area. Many more significant air pollution impacts can be evaluated with the identification of probable air pollutant sources with the use of elemental fingerprints and locating these sources with the use of HYSPLIT and CPF. (author)

  3. Genome association study through nonlinear mixed models revealed new candidate genes for pig growth curves

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabyano Fonseca e Silva

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT: Genome association analyses have been successful in identifying quantitative trait loci (QTLs for pig body weights measured at a single age. However, when considering the whole weight trajectories over time in the context of genome association analyses, it is important to look at the markers that affect growth curve parameters. The easiest way to consider them is via the two-step method, in which the growth curve parameters and marker effects are estimated separately, thereby resulting in a reduction of the statistical power and the precision of estimates. One efficient solution is to adopt nonlinear mixed models (NMM, which enables a joint modeling of the individual growth curves and marker effects. Our aim was to propose a genome association analysis for growth curves in pigs based on NMM as well as to compare it with the traditional two-step method. In addition, we also aimed to identify the nearest candidate genes related to significant SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism markers. The NMM presented a higher number of significant SNPs for adult weight (A and maturity rate (K, and provided a direct way to test SNP significance simultaneously for both the A and K parameters. Furthermore, all significant SNPs from the two-step method were also reported in the NMM analysis. The ontology of the three candidate genes (SH3BGRL2, MAPK14, and MYL9 derived from significant SNPs (simultaneously affecting A and K allows us to make inferences with regards to their contribution to the pig growth process in the population studied.

  4. Integration of computational modeling with membrane transport studies reveals new insights into amino acid exchange transport mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Widdows, Kate L.; Panitchob, Nuttanont; Crocker, Ian P.; Please, Colin P.; Hanson, Mark A.; Sibley, Colin P.; Johnstone, Edward D.; Sengers, Bram G.; Lewis, Rohan M.; Glazier, Jocelyn D.

    2015-01-01

    Uptake of system L amino acid substrates into isolated placental plasma membrane vesicles in the absence of opposing side amino acid (zero-trans uptake) is incompatible with the concept of obligatory exchange, where influx of amino acid is coupled to efflux. We therefore hypothesized that system L amino acid exchange transporters are not fully obligatory and/or that amino acids are initially present inside the vesicles. To address this, we combined computational modeling with vesicle transport assays and transporter localization studies to investigate the mechanisms mediating [14C]l-serine (a system L substrate) transport into human placental microvillous plasma membrane (MVM) vesicles. The carrier model provided a quantitative framework to test the 2 hypotheses that l-serine transport occurs by either obligate exchange or nonobligate exchange coupled with facilitated transport (mixed transport model). The computational model could only account for experimental [14C]l-serine uptake data when the transporter was not exclusively in exchange mode, best described by the mixed transport model. MVM vesicle isolates contained endogenous amino acids allowing for potential contribution to zero-trans uptake. Both L-type amino acid transporter (LAT)1 and LAT2 subtypes of system L were distributed to MVM, with l-serine transport attributed to LAT2. These findings suggest that exchange transporters do not function exclusively as obligate exchangers.—Widdows, K. L., Panitchob, N., Crocker, I. P., Please, C. P., Hanson, M. A., Sibley, C. P., Johnstone, E. D., Sengers, B. G., Lewis, R. M., Glazier, J. D. Integration of computational modeling with membrane transport studies reveals new insights into amino acid exchange transport mechanisms. PMID:25761365

  5. The geography of demography: long-term demographic studies and species distribution models reveal a species border limited by adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eckhart, V M; Geber, M A; Morris, W F; Fabio, E S; Tiffin, P; Moeller, D A

    2011-10-01

    Potential causes of species' geographic distribution limits fall into two broad classes: (1) limited adaptation across spatially variable environments and (2) limited opportunities to colonize unoccupied areas. Combining demographic studies, analyses of demographic responses to environmental variation, and species distribution models, we investigated the causes of range limits in a model system, the eastern border of the California annual plant Clarkia xantiana ssp. xantiana. Vital rates of 20 populations varied with growing season temperature and precipitation: fruit number and overwinter survival of 1-year-old seeds declined steeply, while current-year seed germination increased modestly along west-to-east gradients in decreasing temperature, decreasing mean precipitation, and increasing variation in precipitation. Long-term stochastic finite rate of increase, λ(s), exhibited a fourfold range and varied among geologic surface materials as well as with temperature and precipitation. Growth rate declined significantly toward the eastern border, falling below 1 in three of the five easternmost populations. Distribution models employing demographically important environmental variables predicted low habitat favorability beyond the eastern border. Models that filtered or weighted population presences by λ(s) predicted steeper eastward declines in favorability and assigned greater roles in setting the distribution to among-year variation in precipitation and to geologic surface material. These analyses reveal a species border likely set by limited adaptation to declining environmental quality.

  6. Proteomics reveals changes in hepatic proteins during chicken embryonic development: an alternative model to study human obesity

    OpenAIRE

    Peng, Mengling; Li, Shengnan; He, Qianian; Zhao, Jinlong; Li, Longlong; Ma, Haitian

    2018-01-01

    Background Chicken embryos are widely used as a model for studies of obesity; however, no detailed information is available about the dynamic changes of proteins during the regulation of adipose biology and metabolism. Thus, the present study used an isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ)-based proteomic approach to identify the changes in protein abundance at different stages of chicken embryonic development. Results In this study, the abundances of 293 hepatic proteins...

  7. Empirical study of travel mode forecasting improvement for the combined revealed preference/stated preference data–based discrete choice model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yanfu Qiao

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The combined revealed preference/stated preference data–based discrete choice model has provided the actual choice-making restraints as well as reduced the prediction errors. But the random error variance of alternatives belonging to different data would impact its universality. In this article, we studied the traffic corridor between Chengdu and Longquan with the revealed preference/stated preference joint model, and the single stated preference data model separately predicted the choice probability of each mode. We found the revealed preference/stated preference joint model is universal only when there is a significant difference between the random error terms in different data. The single stated preference data would amplify the travelers’ preference and cause prediction error. We proposed a universal way that uses revealed preference data to modify the single stated preference data parameter estimation results to achieve the composite utility and reduce the prediction error. And the result suggests that prediction results are more reasonable based on the composite utility than the results based on the single stated preference data, especially forecasting the mode share of bus. The future metro line will be the main travel mode in this corridor, and 45% of passenger flow will transfer to the metro.

  8. Proteomics reveals changes in hepatic proteins during chicken embryonic development: an alternative model to study human obesity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Mengling; Li, Shengnan; He, Qianian; Zhao, Jinlong; Li, Longlong; Ma, Haitian

    2018-01-08

    Chicken embryos are widely used as a model for studies of obesity; however, no detailed information is available about the dynamic changes of proteins during the regulation of adipose biology and metabolism. Thus, the present study used an isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ)-based proteomic approach to identify the changes in protein abundance at different stages of chicken embryonic development. In this study, the abundances of 293 hepatic proteins in 19-day old of chicken embryos compared with 14-day old and 160 hepatic proteins at hatching compared with 19-day old embryos were significantly changed. Pathway analysis showed that fatty acid degradation (upregulated ACAA2, CPT1A, and ACOX1), protein folding (upregulated PDIs, CALR3, LMAN1, and UBQLN1) and gluconeogenesis (upregulated ACSS1, AKR1A1, ALDH3A2, ALDH7A1, and FBP2) were enhanced from embryonic day 14 (E14) to E19 of chicken embryo development. Analysis of the differentially abundant proteins indicated that glycolysis was not the main way to produce energy from E19 to hatching day during chicken embryo development. In addition, purine metabolism was enhanced, as deduced from increased IMPDH2, NT5C, PGM2, and XDH abundances, and the decrease of growth rate could be overcome by increasing the abundance of ribosomal proteins from E19 to the hatching day. The levels of certain proteins were coordinated with each other to regulate the changes in metabolic pathways to satisfy the requirement for growth and development at different stages of chicken embryo development. Importantly, ACAA2, CPT1A, and ACOX1 might be key factors to control fat deposition during chicken embryonic development. These results provided information showing that chicken is a useful model to further investigate the mechanism of obesity and insulin resistance in humans.

  9. In vivo magnetic resonance studies reveal neuroanatomical and neurochemical abnormalities in the serine racemase knockout mouse model of schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puhl, Matthew D; Mintzopoulos, Dionyssios; Jensen, J Eric; Gillis, Timothy E; Konopaske, Glenn T; Kaufman, Marc J; Coyle, Joseph T

    2015-01-01

    Decreased availability of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) co-agonist D-serine is thought to promote NMDAR hypofunction and contribute to the pathophysiology of schizophrenia, including neuroanatomical abnormalities, such as cortical atrophy and ventricular enlargement, and neurochemical abnormalities, such as aberrant glutamate and γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) signaling. It is thought that these abnormalities directly relate to the negative symptoms and cognitive impairments that are hallmarks of the disorder. Because of the genetic complexity of schizophrenia, animal models of the disorder are extremely valuable for the study of genetically predisposing factors. Our laboratory developed a transgenic mouse model lacking serine racemase (SR), the synthetic enzyme of d-serine, polymorphisms of which are associated with schizophrenia. Null mutants (SR-/-) exhibit NMDAR hypofunction and cognitive impairments. We used 9.4 T magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and proton spectroscopy (MRS) to compare in vivo brain structure and neurochemistry in wildtype (WT) and SR-/- mice. Mice were anesthetized with isoflurane for MRI and MRS scans. Compared to WT controls, SR-/- mice exhibited 23% larger ventricular volumes (pcomparable to those previously reported in humans with schizophrenia. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Mechanistic Studies and Modeling Reveal the Origin of Differential Inhibition of Gag Polymorphic Viruses by HIV-1 Maturation Inhibitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Zeyu; Cantone, Joseph; Lu, Hao; Nowicka-Sans, Beata; Protack, Tricia; Yuan, Tian; Yang, Hong; Liu, Zheng; Drexler, Dieter; Regueiro-Ren, Alicia; Meanwell, Nicholas A; Cockett, Mark; Krystal, Mark; Lataillade, Max; Dicker, Ira B

    2016-11-01

    HIV-1 maturation inhibitors (MIs) disrupt the final step in the HIV-1 protease-mediated cleavage of the Gag polyprotein between capsid p24 capsid (CA) and spacer peptide 1 (SP1), leading to the production of infectious virus. BMS-955176 is a second generation MI with improved antiviral activity toward polymorphic Gag variants compared to a first generation MI bevirimat (BVM). The underlying mechanistic reasons for the differences in polymorphic coverage were studied using antiviral assays, an LC/MS assay that quantitatively characterizes CA/SP1 cleavage kinetics of virus like particles (VLPs) and a radiolabel binding assay to determine VLP/MI affinities and dissociation kinetics. Antiviral assay data indicates that BVM does not achieve 100% inhibition of certain polymorphs, even at saturating concentrations. This results in the breakthrough of infectious virus (partial antagonism) regardless of BVM concentration. Reduced maximal percent inhibition (MPI) values for BVM correlated with elevated EC50 values, while rates of HIV-1 protease cleavage at CA/SP1 correlated inversely with the ability of BVM to inhibit HIV-1 Gag polymorphic viruses: genotypes with more rapid CA/SP1 cleavage kinetics were less sensitive to BVM. In vitro inhibition of wild type VLP CA/SP1 cleavage by BVM was not maintained at longer cleavage times. BMS-955176 exhibited greatly improved MPI against polymorphic Gag viruses, binds to Gag polymorphs with higher affinity/longer dissociation half-lives and exhibits greater time-independent inhibition of CA/SP1 cleavage compared to BVM. Virological (MPI) and biochemical (CA/SP1 cleavage rates, MI-specific Gag affinities) data were used to create an integrated semi-quantitative model that quantifies CA/SP1 cleavage rates as a function of both MI and Gag polymorph. The model outputs are in accord with in vitro antiviral observations and correlate with observed in vivo MI efficacies. Overall, these findings may be useful to further understand antiviral

  11. DIGE proteome analysis reveals suitability of ischemic cardiac in vitro model for studying cellular response to acute ischemia and regeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sina Haas

    Full Text Available Proteomic analysis of myocardial tissue from patient population is suited to yield insights into cellular and molecular mechanisms taking place in cardiovascular diseases. However, it has been limited by small sized biopsies and complicated by high variances between patients. Therefore, there is a high demand for suitable model systems with the capability to simulate ischemic and cardiotoxic effects in vitro, under defined conditions. In this context, we established an in vitro ischemia/reperfusion cardiac disease model based on the contractile HL-1 cell line. To identify pathways involved in the cellular alterations induced by ischemia and thereby defining disease-specific biomarkers and potential target structures for new drug candidates we used fluorescence 2D-difference gel electrophoresis. By comparing spot density changes in ischemic and reperfusion samples we detected several protein spots that were differentially abundant. Using MALDI-TOF/TOF-MS and ESI-MS the proteins were identified and subsequently grouped by functionality. Most prominent were changes in apoptosis signalling, cell structure and energy-metabolism. Alterations were confirmed by analysis of human biopsies from patients with ischemic cardiomyopathy.With the establishment of our in vitro disease model for ischemia injury target identification via proteomic research becomes independent from rare human material and will create new possibilities in cardiac research.

  12. Selectivity of primary events in the radiation chemistry of organic solids and polymers as revealed by model studies of ionized molecules

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feldman, V.

    2006-01-01

    Selectivity of the primary chemical events induced by ionizing radiation in molecular systems is the key issue of basic radiation chemistry, which is crucially important for controlling the radiation sensitivity of various-type organic and polymeric materials and designing new effective approaches to the radiation modification. In the past decade we have demonstrated that many features of selective localization of the radiation-induced effects in molecular solids can be understood on the basis of model studies of the primary ionized molecules in rigid low-temperature matrices. This talk will outline the key results of these studies and possible implications for radiation chemistry of vatious systems. In particular, the following aspects will be considered: (1) Spectroscopic characteristics of ustable ionized molecules in low-temperature matrices and their correlations with the site-selective reactivity. (2) Experimental modeling of the effect of excess energy on the properties of primary ionized molecules in condensed phases. (3) Intramolecular long-range effects with particular impact on the properties of ionized bifunctional molecules of X-(CH 2 ) n -X and X-(CH 2 ) n -Y types. (4) Modeling of intermolecular long-range positive hole transfer between molecular traps with close ionization energy and manifestations of 'fine tuning' effects resulting from conformation variations and intermolecular interactions. Several illustrative examples of correlation between the properties of primary ionized molecules and selectivity of the radiation-chemical transformations in organic solids and macromolecules will be presented. Finally, the problem of prediction of the radiation-chemical behaviour of complex organic systems on the basis of limited spectroscopic information and quantum-chemical data obtained for model systems will be addressed. This work was supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (Project No. 06-03-33104) and the Russian Academy of Sciences

  13. Quantum Model of Catalysis Based on a Mobile Proton Revealed by Subatomic X-ray and Neutron Diffraction Studies of h-aldose Reductase

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Blakeley, M. P. [European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), France; Ruiz, Fredrico [Institut de Genetique et de Biologie Moleculaire et Cellulaire, CNRS, ULP, INSER; Cachau, Raul [SAIC-Frederick, Inc., National Cancer Institute at Frederick, Frederick, MD; Hazemann, I. [Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL); Meilleur, Flora [Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL); Mitschler, A. [IGBMC; Ginell, Stephan [Argonne National Laboratory (ANL); Afonine, Pavel [Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL); Ventura, Oscar [Computational Chemical Physics Group, DETEMA, Facultad de Quimica, UdelaR, C.C.1; Cousido-Siah, Alexandra [Institut de Genetique et de Biologie Moleculaire et Cellulaire, CNRS, ULP, INSER; Haertlein, M. [Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL); Joachimiak, Andrzej [Argonne National Laboratory (ANL); Myles, Dean A A [ORNL; Podjarny, A. [IGBMC

    2008-01-01

    We present results of combined studies of the enzyme human aldose reductase (h-AR, 36 kDa) using single-crystal x-ray data (0.66 Angstroms, 100K; 0.80 Angstroms, 15K; 1.75 Angstroms, 293K), neutron Laue data (2.2 Angstroms, 293K), and quantum mechanical modeling. These complementary techniques unveil the internal organization and mobility of the hydrogen bond network that defines the properties of the catalytic engine, explaining how this promiscuous enzyme overcomes the simultaneous requirements of efficiency and promiscuity offering a general mechanistic view for this class of enzymes.

  14. In Silico Biology of H1N1: Molecular Modelling of Novel Receptors and Docking Studies of Inhibitors to Reveal New Insight in Flu Treatment

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    Deepak Kumar Behera

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Influenza is an infectious disease caused by RNA viruses of the family Orthomyxoviridae. The new influenza H1N1 viral stain has emerged by the genetic combination of genes from human, pig, and bird’s H1N1 virus. The influenza virus is roughly spherical and is enveloped by a lipid membrane. There are two glycoproteins in this lipid membrane; namely, hemagglutinin (HA which helps in attachment of the viral strain on the host cell surface and neuraminidase (NA that is responsible for initiation of viral infection. We have developed homology models of both Hemagglutinin and Neuraminidase receptors from H1N1 strains in eastern India. The docking studies of B-Sialic acid and O-Sialic acid in the optimized and energy-minimized homology models show important H-bonding interactions with ALA142, ASP230, GLN231, GLU232, and THR141. This information can be used for structure-based and pharmacophore-based new drug design. We have also calculated ADME properties (Human Oral Absorption (HOA and % HOA for Oseltamivir which have been subject of debate for long.

  15. Cellobiose as a model system to reveal cellulose dissolution mechanism in acetate-based ionic liquids: Density functional theory study substantiated by NMR spectra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Bobo; Du, Jiuyao; Du, Dongmei; Sun, Haitao; Zhu, Xiao; Fu, Hui

    2016-09-20

    Cellulose dissolution mechanism in acetate-based ionic liquids was systematically studied in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectra and Density Functional Theory (DFT) methods by using cellobiose and 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium acetate (BmimAc) as a model system. The solubility of cellulose in ionic liquid increased with temperature increase in the range of 90-140°C. NMR spectra suggested OAc(-) preferred to form stronger hydrogen bonds with hydrogen of hydroxyl in cellulose. Electrostatic potential method was employed to predict the most possible reaction sites and locate the most stable configuration. Atoms in molecules (AIM) theory was used to study the features of bonds at bond critical points and the variations of bond types. Simultaneously, noncovalent interactions were characterized and visualized by employing reduced density gradient analysis combined with Visual Molecular Dynamics (VMD) program. Natural bond orbital (NBO) theory was applied to study the noncovalent nature and characterize the orbital interactions between cellobiose and Bmim[OAc]. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Revealing the Driving Forces of Mid-Cities Urban Growth Patterns Using Spatial Modeling: a Case Study of Los Ángeles, Chile

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    Mauricio I. Aguayo

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available City growth and changes in land-use patterns cause various important social and environmental impacts. To understand the spatial and temporal dynamics of these processes, the factors that drive urban development must be identified and analyzed, especially those factors that can be used to predict future changes and their potential environmental effects. Our objectives were to quantify the relationship between urban growth and its driving forces and to predict the spatial growth pattern based on historical land-use changes for the city of Los Ángeles in central Chile. This involved the analysis of images from 1978, 1992, and 1998 and characterization of the spatial pattern of land-use change; the construction of digital coverage in GIS; the selection of predictive variables through univariate analysis; the construction of logistic regression models using growth vs. nongrowth for 1978-1992 as the dependent variable; and the prediction of the probability of land-use change by applying the regression model to the 1992-1998 period. To investigate the influence of spatial scale, we constructed several sets of models that contained (1 only distance variables, e.g., distance to highways; (2 only scale-dependent density variables, e.g., density of urban area within a 600-m radius; (3 both distance and density variables; and (4 both distance and density variables at several spatial scales. The environmental variables were included in all models. The combination of distance and density variables at several scales is required to appropriately capture the multiscale urban growth process. The best models correctly predict ~90% of the observed land-use changes for 1992-1998. The distance to access roads, densities of the urban road system and urbanized area at various scales, and soil type were the strongest predictors of the growth pattern. Other variables were less important or not significant in explaining the urban growth process. Our approach, which

  17. Gaussian graphical modeling reveals specific lipid correlations in glioblastoma cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Nikola S.; Krumsiek, Jan; Theis, Fabian J.; Böhm, Christian; Meyer-Bäse, Anke

    2011-06-01

    Advances in high-throughput measurements of biological specimens necessitate the development of biologically driven computational techniques. To understand the molecular level of many human diseases, such as cancer, lipid quantifications have been shown to offer an excellent opportunity to reveal disease-specific regulations. The data analysis of the cell lipidome, however, remains a challenging task and cannot be accomplished solely based on intuitive reasoning. We have developed a method to identify a lipid correlation network which is entirely disease-specific. A powerful method to correlate experimentally measured lipid levels across the various samples is a Gaussian Graphical Model (GGM), which is based on partial correlation coefficients. In contrast to regular Pearson correlations, partial correlations aim to identify only direct correlations while eliminating indirect associations. Conventional GGM calculations on the entire dataset can, however, not provide information on whether a correlation is truly disease-specific with respect to the disease samples and not a correlation of control samples. Thus, we implemented a novel differential GGM approach unraveling only the disease-specific correlations, and applied it to the lipidome of immortal Glioblastoma tumor cells. A large set of lipid species were measured by mass spectrometry in order to evaluate lipid remodeling as a result to a combination of perturbation of cells inducing programmed cell death, while the other perturbations served solely as biological controls. With the differential GGM, we were able to reveal Glioblastoma-specific lipid correlations to advance biomedical research on novel gene therapies.

  18. Topic Modeling Reveals Distinct Interests within an Online Conspiracy Forum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Colin; Clutton, Peter; Polito, Vince

    2018-01-01

    Conspiracy theories play a troubling role in political discourse. Online forums provide a valuable window into everyday conspiracy theorizing, and can give a clue to the motivations and interests of those who post in such forums. Yet this online activity can be difficult to quantify and study. We describe a unique approach to studying online conspiracy theorists which used non-negative matrix factorization to create a topic model of authors' contributions to the main conspiracy forum on Reddit.com. This subreddit provides a large corpus of comments which spans many years and numerous authors. We show that within the forum, there are multiple sub-populations distinguishable by their loadings on different topics in the model. Further, we argue, these differences are interpretable as differences in background beliefs and motivations. The diversity of the distinct subgroups places constraints on theories of what generates conspiracy theorizing. We argue that traditional “monological” believers are only the tip of an iceberg of commenters. Neither simple irrationality nor common preoccupations can account for the observed diversity. Instead, we suggest, those who endorse conspiracies seem to be primarily brought together by epistemological concerns, and that these central concerns link an otherwise heterogenous group of individuals. PMID:29515501

  19. Topic Modeling Reveals Distinct Interests within an Online Conspiracy Forum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Colin; Clutton, Peter; Polito, Vince

    2018-01-01

    Conspiracy theories play a troubling role in political discourse. Online forums provide a valuable window into everyday conspiracy theorizing, and can give a clue to the motivations and interests of those who post in such forums. Yet this online activity can be difficult to quantify and study. We describe a unique approach to studying online conspiracy theorists which used non-negative matrix factorization to create a topic model of authors' contributions to the main conspiracy forum on Reddit.com. This subreddit provides a large corpus of comments which spans many years and numerous authors. We show that within the forum, there are multiple sub-populations distinguishable by their loadings on different topics in the model. Further, we argue, these differences are interpretable as differences in background beliefs and motivations. The diversity of the distinct subgroups places constraints on theories of what generates conspiracy theorizing. We argue that traditional "monological" believers are only the tip of an iceberg of commenters. Neither simple irrationality nor common preoccupations can account for the observed diversity. Instead, we suggest, those who endorse conspiracies seem to be primarily brought together by epistemological concerns, and that these central concerns link an otherwise heterogenous group of individuals.

  20. Topic Modeling Reveals Distinct Interests within an Online Conspiracy Forum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Colin Klein

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Conspiracy theories play a troubling role in political discourse. Online forums provide a valuable window into everyday conspiracy theorizing, and can give a clue to the motivations and interests of those who post in such forums. Yet this online activity can be difficult to quantify and study. We describe a unique approach to studying online conspiracy theorists which used non-negative matrix factorization to create a topic model of authors' contributions to the main conspiracy forum on Reddit.com. This subreddit provides a large corpus of comments which spans many years and numerous authors. We show that within the forum, there are multiple sub-populations distinguishable by their loadings on different topics in the model. Further, we argue, these differences are interpretable as differences in background beliefs and motivations. The diversity of the distinct subgroups places constraints on theories of what generates conspiracy theorizing. We argue that traditional “monological” believers are only the tip of an iceberg of commenters. Neither simple irrationality nor common preoccupations can account for the observed diversity. Instead, we suggest, those who endorse conspiracies seem to be primarily brought together by epistemological concerns, and that these central concerns link an otherwise heterogenous group of individuals.

  1. Sandfish numerical model reveals optimal swimming in sand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maladen, Ryan; Ding, Yang; Kamor, Adam; Slatton, Andrew; Goldman, Daniel

    2009-11-01

    Motivated by experiment and theory examining the undulatory swimming of the sandfish lizard within granular media footnotetextMaladen et. al, Science, 325, 314, 2009, we study a numerical model of the sandfish as it swims within a validated soft sphere Molecular Dynamics granular media simulation. We hypothesize that features of its morphology and undulatory kinematics, and the granular media contribute to effective sand swimming. Our results agree with a resistive force model of the sandfish and show that speed and transport cost are optimized at a ratio of wave amplitude to wavelength of 0.2, irrespective of media properties and preparation. At this ratio, the entry of the animal into the media is fastest at an angle of 20^o, close to the angle of repose. We also find that the sandfish cross-sectional body shape reduces motion induced buoyancy within the granular media and that wave efficiency is sensitive to body-particle friction but independent of particle-particle friction.

  2. Animal Model Reveals Potential Waterborne Transmission of Helicobacter pylori Infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boehnke, Kevin F; Eaton, Kathryn A; Valdivieso, Manuel; Baker, Laurence H; Xi, Chuanwu

    2015-10-01

    Helicobacter pylori infection has been consistently associated with lack of access to clean water and proper sanitation, but no studies have demonstrated that the transmission of H. pylori can occur from drinking contaminated water. In this study, we used a laboratory mouse model to test whether waterborne H. pylori could cause gastric infection. Groups of immunocompetent C57/BL6 Helicobacter-free mice were exposed to static concentrations (1.29 × 10(5), 10(6), 10(7), 10(8), and 10(9) CFU/L) of H. pylori in their drinking water for 4 weeks. One group of Helicobacter-free mice was exposed to uncontaminated water as a negative control. H. pylori morphology changes in water were examined using microscopy Live/Dead staining. Following exposure, H. pylori infection and inflammation status in the stomach were evaluated using quantitative culture, PCR, the rapid urease test, and histology. None of the mice in the negative control or 10(5) groups were infected. One of 20 cages (one of 40 mice) of the 10(6) group, three of 19 cages (four of 38 mice) of the 10(7) CFU/L group, 19 of 20 cages (33 of 40 mice) of the 10(8) group, and 20 of 20 cages (39 of 40 mice) of the 10(9) CFU/L group were infected. Infected mice had significantly higher gastric inflammation than uninfected mice (27.86% higher inflammation, p pylori in water is infectious in mice, suggesting that humans drinking contaminated water may be at risk of contracting H. pylori infection. Much work needs to be performed to better understand the risk of infection from drinking H. pylori-contaminated water. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. Ethiopian population dermatoglyphic study reveals linguistic stratification of diversity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seile Yohannes

    Full Text Available The manifestation of ethnic, blood type, & gender-wise population variations regarding Dermatoglyphic manifestations are of interest to assess intra-group diversity and differentiation. The present study reports on the analysis of qualitaive and quantitative finger Dermatoglyphic traits of 382 individuals cross-sectionally sampled from an administrative region of Ethiopia, consisting of five ethnic cohorts from the Afro-Asiatic & Nilo-Saharan affiliations. These Dermatoglyphic parameters were then applied in the assessment of diversity & differentiation, including Heterozygosity, Fixation, Panmixia, Wahlund's variance, Nei's measure of genetic diversity, and thumb & finger pattern genotypes, which were inturn used in homology inferences as summarized by a Neighbour-Joining tree constructed from Nei's standard genetic distance. Results revealed significant correlation between Dermatoglyphics & population parameters that were further found to be in concordance with the historical accounts of the ethnic groups. Such inductions as the ancient north-eastern presence and subsequent admixure events of the Oromos (PII= 15.01, the high diversity of the Amharas (H= 0.1978, F= 0.6453, and P= 0.4144, and the Nilo-Saharan origin of the Berta group (PII= 10.66 are evidences to this. The study has further tested the possibility of applying Dermatoglyphics in population genetic & anthropologic research, highlighting on the prospect of developing a method to trace back population origins & ancient movement patterns. Additionally, linguistic clustering was deemed significant for the Ethiopian population, coinciding with recent genome wide studies that have ascertained that linguistic clustering as to being more crucial than the geographical patterning in the Ethiopian context. Finally, Dermatoglyphic markers have been proven to be endowed with a strong potential as non-invasive preliminary tools applicable prior to genetic studies to analyze ethnically sub

  4. Ethiopian population dermatoglyphic study reveals linguistic stratification of diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yohannes, Seile; Bekele, Endashaw

    2015-01-01

    The manifestation of ethnic, blood type, & gender-wise population variations regarding Dermatoglyphic manifestations are of interest to assess intra-group diversity and differentiation. The present study reports on the analysis of qualitaive and quantitative finger Dermatoglyphic traits of 382 individuals cross-sectionally sampled from an administrative region of Ethiopia, consisting of five ethnic cohorts from the Afro-Asiatic & Nilo-Saharan affiliations. These Dermatoglyphic parameters were then applied in the assessment of diversity & differentiation, including Heterozygosity, Fixation, Panmixia, Wahlund's variance, Nei's measure of genetic diversity, and thumb & finger pattern genotypes, which were inturn used in homology inferences as summarized by a Neighbour-Joining tree constructed from Nei's standard genetic distance. Results revealed significant correlation between Dermatoglyphics & population parameters that were further found to be in concordance with the historical accounts of the ethnic groups. Such inductions as the ancient north-eastern presence and subsequent admixure events of the Oromos (PII= 15.01), the high diversity of the Amharas (H= 0.1978, F= 0.6453, and P= 0.4144), and the Nilo-Saharan origin of the Berta group (PII= 10.66) are evidences to this. The study has further tested the possibility of applying Dermatoglyphics in population genetic & anthropologic research, highlighting on the prospect of developing a method to trace back population origins & ancient movement patterns. Additionally, linguistic clustering was deemed significant for the Ethiopian population, coinciding with recent genome wide studies that have ascertained that linguistic clustering as to being more crucial than the geographical patterning in the Ethiopian context. Finally, Dermatoglyphic markers have been proven to be endowed with a strong potential as non-invasive preliminary tools applicable prior to genetic studies to analyze ethnically sub-divided populations and

  5. Multiplex model of mental lexicon reveals explosive learning in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stella, Massimo; Beckage, Nicole M; Brede, Markus; De Domenico, Manlio

    2018-02-02

    Word similarities affect language acquisition and use in a multi-relational way barely accounted for in the literature. We propose a multiplex network representation of this mental lexicon of word similarities as a natural framework for investigating large-scale cognitive patterns. Our representation accounts for semantic, taxonomic, and phonological interactions and it identifies a cluster of words which are used with greater frequency, are identified, memorised, and learned more easily, and have more meanings than expected at random. This cluster emerges around age 7 through an explosive transition not reproduced by null models. We relate this explosive emergence to polysemy - redundancy in word meanings. Results indicate that the word cluster acts as a core for the lexicon, increasing both lexical navigability and robustness to linguistic degradation. Our findings provide quantitative confirmation of existing conjectures about core structure in the mental lexicon and the importance of integrating multi-relational word-word interactions in psycholinguistic frameworks.

  6. Integrative modelling reveals mechanisms linking productivity and plant species richness

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grace, James B.; Anderson, T. Michael; Seabloom, Eric W.; Borer, Elizabeth T.; Adler, Peter B.; Harpole, W. Stanley; Hautier, Yann; Hillebrand, Helmut; Lind, Eric M.; Pärtel, Meelis; Bakker, Jonathan D.; Buckley, Yvonne M.; Crawley, Michael J.; Damschen, Ellen I.; Davies, Kendi F.; Fay, Philip A.; Firn, Jennifer; Gruner, Daniel S.; Hector, Andy; Knops, Johannes M. H.; MacDougall, Andrew S.; Melbourne, Brett A.; Morgan, John W.; Orrock, John L.; Prober, Suzanne M.; Smith, Melinda D.

    2016-01-01

    How ecosystem productivity and species richness are interrelated is one of the most debated subjects in the history of ecology. Decades of intensive study have yet to discern the actual mechanisms behind observed global patterns. Here, by integrating the predictions from multiple theories into a

  7. Novel personalized pathway-based metabolomics models reveal key metabolic pathways for breast cancer diagnosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Huang, Sijia; Chong, Nicole; Lewis, Nathan

    2016-01-01

    diagnosis. We applied this method to predict breast cancer occurrence, in combination with correlation feature selection (CFS) and classification methods. Results: The resulting all-stage and early-stage diagnosis models are highly accurate in two sets of testing blood samples, with average AUCs (Area Under.......993. Moreover, important metabolic pathways, such as taurine and hypotaurine metabolism and the alanine, aspartate, and glutamate pathway, are revealed as critical biological pathways for early diagnosis of breast cancer. Conclusions: We have successfully developed a new type of pathway-based model to study...... metabolomics data for disease diagnosis. Applying this method to blood-based breast cancer metabolomics data, we have discovered crucial metabolic pathway signatures for breast cancer diagnosis, especially early diagnosis. Further, this modeling approach may be generalized to other omics data types for disease...

  8. Fibrinogen adsorption mechanisms at the gold substrate revealed by QCM-D measurements and RSA modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubiak, Katarzyna; Adamczyk, Zbigniew; Cieśla, Michał

    2016-03-01

    Adsorption kinetics of fibrinogen at a gold substrate at various pHs was thoroughly studied using the QCM-D method. The experimental were interpreted in terms of theoretical calculations performed according to the random sequential adsorption model (RSA). In this way, the hydration functions and water factors of fibrinogen monolayers were quantitatively evaluated at various pHs. It was revealed that for the lower range of fibrinogen coverage the hydration function were considerably lower than previously obtained for the silica sensor [33]. The lower hydration of fibrinogen monolayers on the gold sensor was attributed to its higher roughness. However, for higher fibrinogen coverage the hydration functions for both sensors became identical exhibiting an universal behavior. By using the hydration functions, the fibrinogen adsorption/desorption runs derived from QCM-D measurements were converted to the Γd vs. the time relationships. This allowed to precisely determine the maximum coverage that varied between 1.6mgm(-2) at pH 3.5 and 4.5mgm(-2) at pH 7.4 (for ionic strength of 0.15M). These results agree with theoretical eRSA modeling and previous experimental data derived by using ellipsometry, OWLS and TIRF. Various fibrinogen adsorption mechanisms were revealed by exploiting the maximum coverage data. These results allow one to develop a method for preparing fibrinogen monolayers of well-controlled coverage and molecule orientation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. New study reveals twice as many asteroids as previously believed

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-05-01

    The ISO satellite Credits: ESA ISO An artist's impression of the ISO spacecraft. The ISO Deep Asteroid Search indicates that there are between 1.1 million and 1.9 million 'space rocks' larger than 1 kilometre in diameter in the so-called 'main asteroid belt', about twice as many as previously believed. However, astronomers think it is premature to revise current assessments of the risk of the Earth being hit by an asteroid. Despite being in our own Solar System, asteroids can be more difficult to study than very distant galaxies. With sizes of up to one thousand kilometres in diameter, the brightness of these rocky objects may vary considerably in just a few minutes. They move very quickly with respect to the stars - they have been dubbed 'vermin of the sky' because they often appear as trails on long exposure images. This elusiveness explains why their actual number and size distribution remains uncertain. Most of the almost 40,000 asteroids catalogued so far (1) orbit the Sun forming the 'main asteroid belt', between Mars and Jupiter, too far to pose any threat to Earth. However, space-watchers do keep a closer eye on another category of asteroids, the 'Near Earth Asteroids' or 'NEAs', which are those whose orbits cross, or are likely to cross, that of our planet. The ISO Deep Asteroid Search (IDAS), the first systematic search for these objects performed in infrared light, focused on main belt asteroids. Because it is impossible to simply point the telescope at the whole main belt and count, astronomers choose selected regions of the belt and then use a theoretical model to extrapolate the data to the whole belt. Edward Tedesco (TerraSystems, Inc., New Hampshire, United States) and François-Xavier Desert (Observatoire de Grenoble, France) observed their main belt selected areas in 1996 and 1997 with ESA's ISO. They found that in the middle region of the belt the density of asteroids was 160 asteroids larger than 1 kilometre per square degree - an area of the

  10. Microscopic study reveals the singular origins of growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yaari, G.; Nowak, A.; Rakocy, K.; Solomon, S.

    2008-04-01

    Anderson [Science 177, 293 (1972)] proposed the concept of complexity in order to describe the emergence and growth of macroscopic collective patterns out of the simple interactions of many microscopic agents. In the physical sciences this paradigm was implemented systematically and confirmed repeatedly by successful confrontation with reality. In the social sciences however, the possibilities to stage experiments to validate it are limited. During the 90's a series of dramatic political and economic events have provided the opportunity to do so. We exploit the resulting empirical evidence to validate a simple agent based alternative to the classical logistic dynamics. The post-liberalization empirical data from Poland confirm the theoretical prediction that the dynamics is dominated by singular rare events which insure the resilience and adaptability of the system. We have shown that growth is led by few singular “growth centers" (Fig. 1), that initially developed at a tremendous rate (Fig. 3), followed by a diffusion process to the rest of the country and leading to a positive growth rate uniform across the counties. In addition to the interdisciplinary unifying potential of our generic formal approach, the present work reveals the strong causal ties between the “softer" social conditions and their “hard" economic consequences.

  11. Floodplain forest succession reveals fluvial processes: A hydrogeomorphic model for temperate riparian woodlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egger, Gregory; Politti, Emilio; Lautsch, Erwin; Benjankar, Rohan; Gill, Karen M; Rood, Stewart B

    2015-09-15

    River valley floodplains are physically-dynamic environments where fluvial processes determine habitat gradients for riparian vegetation. These zones support trees and shrubs whose life stages are adapted to specific habitat types and consequently forest composition and successional stage reflect the underlying hydrogeomorphic processes and history. In this study we investigated woodland vegetation composition, successional stage and habitat properties, and compared these with physically-based indicators of hydraulic processes. We thus sought to develop a hydrogeomorphic model to evaluate riparian woodland condition based on the spatial mosaic of successional phases of the floodplain forest. The study investigated free-flowing and dam-impacted reaches of the Kootenai and Flathead Rivers, in Idaho and Montana, USA and British Columbia, Canada. The analyses revealed strong correspondence between vegetation assessments and metrics of fluvial processes indicating morphodynamics (erosion and shear stress), inundation and depth to groundwater. The results indicated that common successional stages generally occupied similar hydraulic environments along the different river segments. Comparison of the spatial patterns between the free-flowing and regulated reaches revealed greater deviation from the natural condition for the braided channel segment than for the meandering segment. This demonstrates the utility of the hydrogeomorphic approach and suggests that riparian woodlands along braided channels could have lower resilience than those along meandering channels and might be more vulnerable to influences such as from river damming or climate change. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Cooperative Metabolism in a Three-Partner Insect-Bacterial Symbiosis Revealed by Metabolic Modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ankrah, Nana Y D; Luan, Junbo; Douglas, Angela E

    2017-08-01

    An important factor determining the impact of microbial symbionts on their animal hosts is the balance between the cost of nutrients consumed by the symbionts and the benefit of nutrients released back to the host, but the quantitative significance of nutrient exchange in symbioses involving multiple microbial partners has rarely been addressed. In this study on the association between two intracellular bacterial symbionts, " Candidatus Portiera aleyrodidarum" and " Candidatus Hamiltonella defensa," and their animal host, the whitefly Bemisia tabaci , we apply metabolic modeling to investigate host-symbiont nutrient exchange. Our in silico analysis revealed that >60% of the essential amino acids and related metabolites synthesized by " Candidatus Portiera aleyrodidarum" are utilized by the host, including a substantial contribution of nitrogen recycled from host nitrogenous waste, and that these interactions are required for host growth. In contrast, " Candidatus Hamiltonella defensa" retains most or all of the essential amino acids and B vitamins that it is capable of synthesizing. Furthermore, " Candidatus Hamiltonella defensa" suppresses host growth in silico by competition with " Candidatus Portiera aleyrodidarum" for multiple host nutrients, by suppressing " Candidatus Portiera aleyrodidarum" growth and metabolic function, and also by consumption of host nutrients that would otherwise be allocated to host growth. The interpretation from these modeling outputs that " Candidatus Hamiltonella defensa" is a nutritional parasite could not be inferred reliably from gene content alone but requires consideration of constraints imposed by the structure of the metabolic network. Furthermore, these quantitative models offer precise predictions for future experimental study and the opportunity to compare the functional organization of metabolic networks in different symbioses. IMPORTANCE The metabolic functions of unculturable intracellular bacteria with much reduced

  13. Implementing Japanese Lesson Study in Foreign Countries: Misconceptions Revealed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujii, Toshiakira

    2014-01-01

    This paper is based on data gathered during visits to Uganda and Malawi, conducted by the International Math-teacher Professionalization Using Lesson Study (IMPULS) project and the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA). The author's observations and experiences highlighted misconceptions about lesson study. The paper concludes that some…

  14. Study Reveals Brain Biology behind Self-Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sparks, Sarah D.

    2011-01-01

    A new neuroscience twist on a classic psychology study offers some clues to what makes one student able to buckle down for hours of homework before a test while his classmates party. The study published in the September 2011 edition of "Proceedings of the National Academy of Science," suggests environmental cues may "hijack" the brain's mechanisms…

  15. Inferences on radiation carcinogenesis revealed by selected studies in animals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bustad, L.K.; Goldman, M.; Rosenblatt, L.

    1976-01-01

    Studies of heterogeneous populations of animals with long lives and humans, exposed to various radionuclides and particularly those related to the nuclear energy fuel cycle, are instructive for deriving inferences relative to the cinogenic risk of energy-related radiation. Dose-response curves for various radionuclides [with varying half-lives, qualities of radiation (LET), and metabolic characteristics] provide similarities regardless of the species studied or the tissues at risk

  16. Developmental palaeontology of Reptilia as revealed by histological studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheyer, Torsten M; Klein, Nicole; Sander, P Martin

    2010-06-01

    Among the fossilized ontogenetic series known for tetrapods, only more basal groups like temnospondyl amphibians have been used extensively in developmental studies, whereas reptilian and synapsid data have been largely neglected so far. However, before such ontogenetic series can be subject to study, the relative age and affiliation of putative specimens within a series has to be verified. Bone histology has a long-standing tradition as being a source of palaeobiological and growth history data in fossil amniotes and indeed, the analysis of bone microstructures still remains the most important and most reliable tool for determining the absolute ontogenetic age of fossil vertebrates. It is also the only direct way to reconstruct life histories and growth strategies for extinct animals. Herein the record of bone histology among Reptilia and its application to elucidate and expand fossilized ontogenies as a source of developmental data are reviewed. (c) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Novel personalized pathway-based metabolomics models reveal key metabolic pathways for breast cancer diagnosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Sijia; Chong, Nicole; Lewis, Nathan E; Jia, Wei; Xie, Guoxiang; Garmire, Lana X

    2016-03-31

    More accurate diagnostic methods are pressingly needed to diagnose breast cancer, the most common malignant cancer in women worldwide. Blood-based metabolomics is a promising diagnostic method for breast cancer. However, many metabolic biomarkers are difficult to replicate among studies. We propose that higher-order functional representation of metabolomics data, such as pathway-based metabolomic features, can be used as robust biomarkers for breast cancer. Towards this, we have developed a new computational method that uses personalized pathway dysregulation scores for disease diagnosis. We applied this method to predict breast cancer occurrence, in combination with correlation feature selection (CFS) and classification methods. The resulting all-stage and early-stage diagnosis models are highly accurate in two sets of testing blood samples, with average AUCs (Area Under the Curve, a receiver operating characteristic curve) of 0.968 and 0.934, sensitivities of 0.946 and 0.954, and specificities of 0.934 and 0.918. These two metabolomics-based pathway models are further validated by RNA-Seq-based TCGA (The Cancer Genome Atlas) breast cancer data, with AUCs of 0.995 and 0.993. Moreover, important metabolic pathways, such as taurine and hypotaurine metabolism and the alanine, aspartate, and glutamate pathway, are revealed as critical biological pathways for early diagnosis of breast cancer. We have successfully developed a new type of pathway-based model to study metabolomics data for disease diagnosis. Applying this method to blood-based breast cancer metabolomics data, we have discovered crucial metabolic pathway signatures for breast cancer diagnosis, especially early diagnosis. Further, this modeling approach may be generalized to other omics data types for disease diagnosis.

  18. Identifying habitats at risk: simple models can reveal complex ecosystem dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maxwell, Paul S; Pitt, Kylie A; Olds, Andrew D; Rissik, David; Connolly, Rod M

    2015-03-01

    The relationship between ecological impact and ecosystem structure is often strongly nonlinear, so that small increases in impact levels can cause a disproportionately large response in ecosystem structure. Nonlinear ecosystem responses can be difficult to predict because locally relevant data sets can be difficult or impossible to obtain. Bayesian networks (BN) are an emerging tool that can help managers to define ecosystem relationships using a range of data types from comprehensive quantitative data sets to expert opinion. We show how a simple BN can reveal nonlinear dynamics in seagrass ecosystems using ecological relationships sourced from the literature. We first developed a conceptual diagram by cataloguing the ecological responses of seagrasses to a range of drivers and impacts. We used the conceptual diagram to develop a BN populated with values sourced from published studies. We then applied the BN to show that the amount of initial seagrass biomass has a mitigating effect on the level of impact a meadow can withstand without loss, and that meadow recovery can often require disproportionately large improvements in impact levels. This mitigating effect resulted in the middle ranges of impact levels having a wide likelihood of seagrass presence, a situation known as bistability. Finally, we applied the model in a case study to identify the risk of loss and the likelihood of recovery for the conservation and management of seagrass meadows in Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia. We used the model to predict the likelihood of bistability in 23 locations in the Bay. The model predicted bistability in seven locations, most of which have experienced seagrass loss at some stage in the past 25 years providing essential information for potential future restoration efforts. Our results demonstrate the capacity of simple, flexible modeling tools to facilitate collation and synthesis of disparate information. This approach can be adopted in the initial stages of

  19. Nationwide Genomic Study in Denmark Reveals Remarkable Population Homogeneity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athanasiadis, Georgios; Cheng, Jade Y; Vilhjálmsson, Bjarni J; Jørgensen, Frank G; Als, Thomas D; Le Hellard, Stephanie; Espeseth, Thomas; Sullivan, Patrick F; Hultman, Christina M; Kjærgaard, Peter C; Schierup, Mikkel H; Mailund, Thomas

    2016-10-01

    Denmark has played a substantial role in the history of Northern Europe. Through a nationwide scientific outreach initiative, we collected genetic and anthropometrical data from ∼800 high school students and used them to elucidate the genetic makeup of the Danish population, as well as to assess polygenic predictions of phenotypic traits in adolescents. We observed remarkable homogeneity across different geographic regions, although we could still detect weak signals of genetic structure reflecting the history of the country. Denmark presented genomic affinity with primarily neighboring countries with overall resemblance of decreasing weight from Britain, Sweden, Norway, Germany, and France. A Polish admixture signal was detected in Zealand and Funen, and our date estimates coincided with historical evidence of Wend settlements in the south of Denmark. We also observed considerably diverse demographic histories among Scandinavian countries, with Denmark having the smallest current effective population size compared to Norway and Sweden. Finally, we found that polygenic prediction of self-reported adolescent height in the population was remarkably accurate (R 2 = 0.639 ± 0.015). The high homogeneity of the Danish population could render population structure a lesser concern for the upcoming large-scale gene-mapping studies in the country. Copyright © 2016 by the Genetics Society of America.

  20. Modelling of Yeast Mating Reveals Robustness Strategies for Cell-Cell Interactions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weitao Chen

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Mating of budding yeast cells is a model system for studying cell-cell interactions. Haploid yeast cells secrete mating pheromones that are sensed by the partner which responds by growing a mating projection toward the source. The two projections meet and fuse to form the diploid. Successful mating relies on precise coordination of dynamic extracellular signals, signaling pathways, and cell shape changes in a noisy background. It remains elusive how cells mate accurately and efficiently in a natural multi-cell environment. Here we present the first stochastic model of multiple mating cells whose morphologies are driven by pheromone gradients and intracellular signals. Our novel computational framework encompassed a moving boundary method for modeling both a-cells and α-cells and their cell shape changes, the extracellular diffusion of mating pheromones dynamically coupled with cell polarization, and both external and internal noise. Quantification of mating efficiency was developed and tested for different model parameters. Computer simulations revealed important robustness strategies for mating in the presence of noise. These strategies included the polarized secretion of pheromone, the presence of the α-factor protease Bar1, and the regulation of sensing sensitivity; all were consistent with data in the literature. In addition, we investigated mating discrimination, the ability of an a-cell to distinguish between α-cells either making or not making α-factor, and mating competition, in which multiple a-cells compete to mate with one α-cell. Our simulations were consistent with previous experimental results. Moreover, we performed a combination of simulations and experiments to estimate the diffusion rate of the pheromone a-factor. In summary, we constructed a framework for simulating yeast mating with multiple cells in a noisy environment, and used this framework to reproduce mating behaviors and to identify strategies for robust cell

  1. Spatial Structure of a Braided River: Metric Resolution Hydrodynamic Modeling Reveals What SWOT Might See

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schubert, J.; Sanders, B. F.; Andreadis, K.

    2013-12-01

    The Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT) mission, currently under study by NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) and CNES (Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales), is designed to provide global spatial measurements of surface water properties at resolutions better than 10 m and with centimetric accuracy. The data produced by SWOT will include irregularly spaced point clouds of the water surface height, with point spacings from roughly 2-50 m depending on a point's location within SWOT's swath. This could offer unprecedented insight into the spatial structure of rivers. Features that may be resolved include backwater profiles behind dams, drawdown profiles, uniform flow sections, critical flow sections, and even riffle-pool flow structures. In the event that SWOT scans a river during a major flood, it becomes possible to delineate the limits of the flood as well as the spatial structure of the water surface elevation, yielding insight into the dynamic interaction of channels and flood plains. The Platte River in Nebraska, USA, is a braided river with a width and slope of approximately 100 m and 100 cm/km, respectively. A 1 m resolution Digital Terrain Model (DTM) of the river basin, based on airborne lidar collected during low-flow conditions, was used to parameterize a two-dimensional, variable resolution, unstructured grid, hydrodynamic model that uses 3 m resolution triangles in low flow channels and 10 m resolution triangles in the floodplain. Use of a fine resolution mesh guarantees that local variability in topography is resolved, and after applying the hydrodynamic model, the effects of topographic variability are expressed as variability in the water surface height, depth-averaged velocity and flow depth. Flow is modeled over a reach length of 10 km for multi-day durations to capture both frequent (diurnal variations associated with regulated flow) and infrequent (extreme flooding) flow phenomena. Model outputs reveal a number of interesting

  2. Network modeling reveals prevalent negative regulatory relationships between signaling sectors in Arabidopsis immune signaling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masanao Sato

    Full Text Available Biological signaling processes may be mediated by complex networks in which network components and network sectors interact with each other in complex ways. Studies of complex networks benefit from approaches in which the roles of individual components are considered in the context of the network. The plant immune signaling network, which controls inducible responses to pathogen attack, is such a complex network. We studied the Arabidopsis immune signaling network upon challenge with a strain of the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae expressing the effector protein AvrRpt2 (Pto DC3000 AvrRpt2. This bacterial strain feeds multiple inputs into the signaling network, allowing many parts of the network to be activated at once. mRNA profiles for 571 immune response genes of 22 Arabidopsis immunity mutants and wild type were collected 6 hours after inoculation with Pto DC3000 AvrRpt2. The mRNA profiles were analyzed as detailed descriptions of changes in the network state resulting from the genetic perturbations. Regulatory relationships among the genes corresponding to the mutations were inferred by recursively applying a non-linear dimensionality reduction procedure to the mRNA profile data. The resulting static network model accurately predicted 23 of 25 regulatory relationships reported in the literature, suggesting that predictions of novel regulatory relationships are also accurate. The network model revealed two striking features: (i the components of the network are highly interconnected; and (ii negative regulatory relationships are common between signaling sectors. Complex regulatory relationships, including a novel negative regulatory relationship between the early microbe-associated molecular pattern-triggered signaling sectors and the salicylic acid sector, were further validated. We propose that prevalent negative regulatory relationships among the signaling sectors make the plant immune signaling network a "sector

  3. Unfolding mechanism of thrombin-binding aptamer revealed by molecular dynamics simulation and Markov State Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Xiaojun; Zhang, Liyun; Xiao, Xiuchan; Jiang, Yuanyuan; Guo, Yanzhi; Yu, Xinyan; Pu, Xuemei; Li, Menglong

    2016-04-05

    Thrombin-binding aptamer (TBA) with the sequence 5'GGTTGGTGTGGTTGG3' could fold into G-quadruplex, which correlates with functionally important genomic regionsis. However, unfolding mechanism involved in the structural stability of G-quadruplex has not been satisfactorily elucidated on experiments so far. Herein, we studied the unfolding pathway of TBA by a combination of molecular dynamics simulation (MD) and Markov State Model (MSM). Our results revealed that the unfolding of TBA is not a simple two-state process but proceeds along multiple pathways with multistate intermediates. One high flux confirms some observations from NMR experiment. Another high flux exhibits a different and simpler unfolding pathway with less intermediates. Two important intermediate states were identified. One is similar to the G-triplex reported in the folding of G-quadruplex, but lack of H-bonding between guanines in the upper plane. More importantly, another intermediate state acting as a connector to link the folding region and the unfolding one, was the first time identified, which exhibits higher population and stability than the G-triplex-like intermediate. These results will provide valuable information for extending our understanding the folding landscape of G-quadruplex formation.

  4. Fourier decomposition of spatial localization errors reveals an idiotropic dominance of an internal model of gravity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Sá Teixeira, Nuno Alexandre

    2014-12-01

    Given its conspicuous nature, gravity has been acknowledged by several research lines as a prime factor in structuring the spatial perception of one's environment. One such line of enquiry has focused on errors in spatial localization aimed at the vanishing location of moving objects - it has been systematically reported that humans mislocalize spatial positions forward, in the direction of motion (representational momentum) and downward in the direction of gravity (representational gravity). Moreover, spatial localization errors were found to evolve dynamically with time in a pattern congruent with an anticipated trajectory (representational trajectory). The present study attempts to ascertain the degree to which vestibular information plays a role in these phenomena. Human observers performed a spatial localization task while tilted to varying degrees and referring to the vanishing locations of targets moving along several directions. A Fourier decomposition of the obtained spatial localization errors revealed that although spatial errors were increased "downward" mainly along the body's longitudinal axis (idiotropic dominance), the degree of misalignment between the latter and physical gravity modulated the time course of the localization responses. This pattern is surmised to reflect increased uncertainty about the internal model when faced with conflicting cues regarding the perceived "downward" direction.

  5. Mechanical models of sandfish locomotion reveal principles of high performance subsurface sand-swimming

    OpenAIRE

    Maladen, Ryan D.; Ding, Yang; Umbanhowar, Paul B.; Kamor, Adam; Goldman, Daniel I.

    2011-01-01

    We integrate biological experiment, empirical theory, numerical simulation and a physical model to reveal principles of undulatory locomotion in granular media. High-speed X-ray imaging of the sandfish lizard, Scincus scincus, in 3 mm glass particles shows that it swims within the medium without using its limbs by propagating a single-period travelling sinusoidal wave down its body, resulting in a wave efficiency, η, the ratio of its average forward speed to the wave speed, of approximately 0...

  6. Enlarging the collective model of household behaviour: a revealed preference analysis

    OpenAIRE

    d'Aspremont-Lynden, Claude; Dos Santos Ferreira, Rodolphe

    2017-01-01

    We use a comprehensive model of strategic household behaviour in which the spouses' expenditure on each public good is decomposed into autonomous spending and coordinated spending à la Lindahl. We obtain a continuum of semi-cooperative regimes parameterized by the relative weights put on autonomous spending, by each spouse and for each public good, nesting full cooperative and non-cooperative regimes as limit cases. Testing is approached through revealed preference analysis, by looking for ra...

  7. High Resolution Genomic Scans Reveal Genetic Architecture Controlling Alcohol Preference in Bidirectionally Selected Rat Model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chiao-Ling Lo

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Investigations on the influence of nature vs. nurture on Alcoholism (Alcohol Use Disorder in human have yet to provide a clear view on potential genomic etiologies. To address this issue, we sequenced a replicated animal model system bidirectionally-selected for alcohol preference (AP. This model is uniquely suited to map genetic effects with high reproducibility, and resolution. The origin of the rat lines (an 8-way cross resulted in small haplotype blocks (HB with a corresponding high level of resolution. We sequenced DNAs from 40 samples (10 per line of each replicate to determine allele frequencies and HB. We achieved ~46X coverage per line and replicate. Excessive differentiation in the genomic architecture between lines, across replicates, termed signatures of selection (SS, were classified according to gene and region. We identified SS in 930 genes associated with AP. The majority (50% of the SS were confined to single gene regions, the greatest numbers of which were in promoters (284 and intronic regions (169 with the least in exon's (4, suggesting that differences in AP were primarily due to alterations in regulatory regions. We confirmed previously identified genes and found many new genes associated with AP. Of those newly identified genes, several demonstrated neuronal function involved in synaptic memory and reward behavior, e.g. ion channels (Kcnf1, Kcnn3, Scn5a, excitatory receptors (Grin2a, Gria3, Grip1, neurotransmitters (Pomc, and synapses (Snap29. This study not only reveals the polygenic architecture of AP, but also emphasizes the importance of regulatory elements, consistent with other complex traits.

  8. High Resolution Genomic Scans Reveal Genetic Architecture Controlling Alcohol Preference in Bidirectionally Selected Rat Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lo, Chiao-Ling; Lossie, Amy C; Liang, Tiebing; Liu, Yunlong; Xuei, Xiaoling; Lumeng, Lawrence; Zhou, Feng C; Muir, William M

    2016-08-01

    Investigations on the influence of nature vs. nurture on Alcoholism (Alcohol Use Disorder) in human have yet to provide a clear view on potential genomic etiologies. To address this issue, we sequenced a replicated animal model system bidirectionally-selected for alcohol preference (AP). This model is uniquely suited to map genetic effects with high reproducibility, and resolution. The origin of the rat lines (an 8-way cross) resulted in small haplotype blocks (HB) with a corresponding high level of resolution. We sequenced DNAs from 40 samples (10 per line of each replicate) to determine allele frequencies and HB. We achieved ~46X coverage per line and replicate. Excessive differentiation in the genomic architecture between lines, across replicates, termed signatures of selection (SS), were classified according to gene and region. We identified SS in 930 genes associated with AP. The majority (50%) of the SS were confined to single gene regions, the greatest numbers of which were in promoters (284) and intronic regions (169) with the least in exon's (4), suggesting that differences in AP were primarily due to alterations in regulatory regions. We confirmed previously identified genes and found many new genes associated with AP. Of those newly identified genes, several demonstrated neuronal function involved in synaptic memory and reward behavior, e.g. ion channels (Kcnf1, Kcnn3, Scn5a), excitatory receptors (Grin2a, Gria3, Grip1), neurotransmitters (Pomc), and synapses (Snap29). This study not only reveals the polygenic architecture of AP, but also emphasizes the importance of regulatory elements, consistent with other complex traits.

  9. Structural Model of RNA Polymerase II Elongation Complex with Complete Transcription Bubble Reveals NTP Entry Routes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lu Zhang

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The RNA polymerase II (Pol II is a eukaryotic enzyme that catalyzes the synthesis of the messenger RNA using a DNA template. Despite numerous biochemical and biophysical studies, it remains elusive whether the "secondary channel" is the only route for NTP to reach the active site of the enzyme or if the "main channel" could be an alternative. On this regard, crystallographic structures of Pol II have been extremely useful to understand the structural basis of transcription, however, the conformation of the unpaired non-template DNA part of the full transcription bubble (TB is still unknown. Since diffusion routes of the nucleoside triphosphate (NTP substrate through the main channel might overlap with the TB region, gaining structural information of the full TB is critical for a complete understanding of Pol II transcription process. In this study, we have built a structural model of Pol II with a complete transcription bubble based on multiple sources of existing structural data and used Molecular Dynamics (MD simulations together with structural analysis to shed light on NTP entry pathways. Interestingly, we found that although both channels have enough space to allow NTP loading, the percentage of MD conformations containing enough space for NTP loading through the secondary channel is twice higher than that of the main channel. Further energetic study based on MD simulations with NTP loaded in the channels has revealed that the diffusion of the NTP through the main channel is greatly disfavored by electrostatic repulsion between the NTP and the highly negatively charged backbones of nucleotides in the non-template DNA strand. Taken together, our results suggest that the secondary channel is the major route for NTP entry during Pol II transcription.

  10. A lesion model of envy and Schadenfreude: legal, deservingness and moral dimensions as revealed by neurodegeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santamaría-García, Hernando; Baez, Sandra; Reyes, Pablo; Santamaría-García, José A; Santacruz-Escudero, José M; Matallana, Diana; Arévalo, Analía; Sigman, Mariano; García, Adolfo M; Ibáñez, Agustín

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The study of moral emotions (i.e. Schadenfreude and envy) is critical to understand the ecological complexity of everyday interactions between cognitive, affective, and social cognition processes. Most previous studies in this area have used correlational imaging techniques and framed Schadenfreude and envy as unified and monolithic emotional domains. Here, we profit from a relevant neurodegeneration model to disentangle the brain regions engaged in three dimensions of Schadenfreude and envy: deservingness, morality, and legality. We tested a group of patients with behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD), patients with Alzheimer’s disease, as a contrastive neurodegeneration model, and healthy controls on a novel task highlighting each of these dimensions in scenarios eliciting Schadenfreude and envy. Compared with the Alzheimer’s disease and control groups, patients with bvFTD obtained significantly higher scores on all dimensions for both emotions. Correlational analyses revealed an association between envy and Schadenfreude scores and greater deficits in social cognition, inhibitory control, and behaviour disturbances in bvFTD patients. Brain anatomy findings (restricted to bvFTD and controls) confirmed the partially dissociable nature of the moral emotions’ experiences and highlighted the importance of socio-moral brain areas in processing those emotions. In all subjects, an association emerged between Schadenfreude and the ventral striatum, and between envy and the anterior cingulate cortex. In addition, the results supported an association between scores for moral and legal transgression and the morphology of areas implicated in emotional appraisal, including the amygdala and the parahippocampus. By contrast, bvFTD patients exhibited a negative association between increased Schadenfreude and envy across dimensions and critical regions supporting social-value rewards and social-moral processes (dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, angular

  11. A lesion model of envy and Schadenfreude: legal, deservingness and moral dimensions as revealed by neurodegeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santamaría-García, Hernando; Baez, Sandra; Reyes, Pablo; Santamaría-García, José A; Santacruz-Escudero, José M; Matallana, Diana; Arévalo, Analía; Sigman, Mariano; García, Adolfo M; Ibáñez, Agustín

    2017-12-01

    The study of moral emotions (i.e. Schadenfreude and envy) is critical to understand the ecological complexity of everyday interactions between cognitive, affective, and social cognition processes. Most previous studies in this area have used correlational imaging techniques and framed Schadenfreude and envy as unified and monolithic emotional domains. Here, we profit from a relevant neurodegeneration model to disentangle the brain regions engaged in three dimensions of Schadenfreude and envy: deservingness, morality, and legality. We tested a group of patients with behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD), patients with Alzheimer's disease, as a contrastive neurodegeneration model, and healthy controls on a novel task highlighting each of these dimensions in scenarios eliciting Schadenfreude and envy. Compared with the Alzheimer's disease and control groups, patients with bvFTD obtained significantly higher scores on all dimensions for both emotions. Correlational analyses revealed an association between envy and Schadenfreude scores and greater deficits in social cognition, inhibitory control, and behaviour disturbances in bvFTD patients. Brain anatomy findings (restricted to bvFTD and controls) confirmed the partially dissociable nature of the moral emotions' experiences and highlighted the importance of socio-moral brain areas in processing those emotions. In all subjects, an association emerged between Schadenfreude and the ventral striatum, and between envy and the anterior cingulate cortex. In addition, the results supported an association between scores for moral and legal transgression and the morphology of areas implicated in emotional appraisal, including the amygdala and the parahippocampus. By contrast, bvFTD patients exhibited a negative association between increased Schadenfreude and envy across dimensions and critical regions supporting social-value rewards and social-moral processes (dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, angular gyrus and

  12. Transcriptional profiling reveals progeroid Ercc1-/Δ mice as a model system for glomerular aging

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    B. Schumacher (Björn); V. Bartels (Valerie); P. Frommolt (Peter); B. Habermann (Bianca); F. Braun (Fabian); J.L. Schultze (Joachim); M. Roodbergen (Marianne); J.H.J. Hoeijmakers (Jan); P. Nürnberg (Peter); M.E.T. Dollé (Martijn); T. Benzing (Thomas); R.-U. Müller (Roman-Ulrich); C.E. Kurschat (Christine)

    2013-01-01

    textabstractBackground: Aging-related kidney diseases are a major health concern. Currently, models to study renal aging are lacking. Due to a reduced life-span progeroid models hold the promise to facilitate aging studies and allow examination of tissue-specific changes. Defects in genome

  13. Probabilistic Inference: Task Dependency and Individual Differences of Probability Weighting Revealed by Hierarchical Bayesian Modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boos, Moritz; Seer, Caroline; Lange, Florian; Kopp, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    Cognitive determinants of probabilistic inference were examined using hierarchical Bayesian modeling techniques. A classic urn-ball paradigm served as experimental strategy, involving a factorial two (prior probabilities) by two (likelihoods) design. Five computational models of cognitive processes were compared with the observed behavior. Parameter-free Bayesian posterior probabilities and parameter-free base rate neglect provided inadequate models of probabilistic inference. The introduction of distorted subjective probabilities yielded more robust and generalizable results. A general class of (inverted) S-shaped probability weighting functions had been proposed; however, the possibility of large differences in probability distortions not only across experimental conditions, but also across individuals, seems critical for the model's success. It also seems advantageous to consider individual differences in parameters of probability weighting as being sampled from weakly informative prior distributions of individual parameter values. Thus, the results from hierarchical Bayesian modeling converge with previous results in revealing that probability weighting parameters show considerable task dependency and individual differences. Methodologically, this work exemplifies the usefulness of hierarchical Bayesian modeling techniques for cognitive psychology. Theoretically, human probabilistic inference might be best described as the application of individualized strategic policies for Bayesian belief revision.

  14. Clustering reveals limits of parameter identifiability in multi-parameter models of biochemical dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nienałtowski, Karol; Włodarczyk, Michał; Lipniacki, Tomasz; Komorowski, Michał

    2015-09-29

    Compared to engineering or physics problems, dynamical models in quantitative biology typically depend on a relatively large number of parameters. Progress in developing mathematics to manipulate such multi-parameter models and so enable their efficient interplay with experiments has been slow. Existing solutions are significantly limited by model size. In order to simplify analysis of multi-parameter models a method for clustering of model parameters is proposed. It is based on a derived statistically meaningful measure of similarity between groups of parameters. The measure quantifies to what extend changes in values of some parameters can be compensated by changes in values of other parameters. The proposed methodology provides a natural mathematical language to precisely communicate and visualise effects resulting from compensatory changes in values of parameters. As a results, a relevant insight into identifiability analysis and experimental planning can be obtained. Analysis of NF-κB and MAPK pathway models shows that highly compensative parameters constitute clusters consistent with the network topology. The method applied to examine an exceptionally rich set of published experiments on the NF-κB dynamics reveals that the experiments jointly ensure identifiability of only 60% of model parameters. The method indicates which further experiments should be performed in order to increase the number of identifiable parameters. We currently lack methods that simplify broadly understood analysis of multi-parameter models. The introduced tools depict mutually compensative effects between parameters to provide insight regarding role of individual parameters, identifiability and experimental design. The method can also find applications in related methodological areas of model simplification and parameters estimation.

  15. Probabilistic inference: Task dependency and individual differences of probability weighting revealed by hierarchical Bayesian modelling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moritz eBoos

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive determinants of probabilistic inference were examined using hierarchical Bayesian modelling techniques. A classic urn-ball paradigm served as experimental strategy, involving a factorial two (prior probabilities by two (likelihoods design. Five computational models of cognitive processes were compared with the observed behaviour. Parameter-free Bayesian posterior probabilities and parameter-free base rate neglect provided inadequate models of probabilistic inference. The introduction of distorted subjective probabilities yielded more robust and generalizable results. A general class of (inverted S-shaped probability weighting functions had been proposed; however, the possibility of large differences in probability distortions not only across experimental conditions, but also across individuals, seems critical for the model’s success. It also seems advantageous to consider individual differences in parameters of probability weighting as being sampled from weakly informative prior distributions of individual parameter values. Thus, the results from hierarchical Bayesian modelling converge with previous results in revealing that probability weighting parameters show considerable task dependency and individual differences. Methodologically, this work exemplifies the usefulness of hierarchical Bayesian modelling techniques for cognitive psychology. Theoretically, human probabilistic inference might be best described as the application of individualized strategic policies for Bayesian belief revision.

  16. Mechanical models of sandfish locomotion reveal principles of high performance subsurface sand-swimming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maladen, Ryan D; Ding, Yang; Umbanhowar, Paul B; Kamor, Adam; Goldman, Daniel I

    2011-09-07

    We integrate biological experiment, empirical theory, numerical simulation and a physical model to reveal principles of undulatory locomotion in granular media. High-speed X-ray imaging of the sandfish lizard, Scincus scincus, in 3 mm glass particles shows that it swims within the medium without using its limbs by propagating a single-period travelling sinusoidal wave down its body, resulting in a wave efficiency, η, the ratio of its average forward speed to the wave speed, of approximately 0.5. A resistive force theory (RFT) that balances granular thrust and drag forces along the body predicts η close to the observed value. We test this prediction against two other more detailed modelling approaches: a numerical model of the sandfish coupled to a discrete particle simulation of the granular medium, and an undulatory robot that swims within granular media. Using these models and analytical solutions of the RFT, we vary the ratio of undulation amplitude to wavelength (A/λ) and demonstrate an optimal condition for sand-swimming, which for a given A results from the competition between η and λ. The RFT, in agreement with the simulated and physical models, predicts that for a single-period sinusoidal wave, maximal speed occurs for A/λ ≈ 0.2, the same kinematics used by the sandfish.

  17. Bayesian model reveals latent atrophy factors with dissociable cognitive trajectories in Alzheimer’s disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xiuming; Mormino, Elizabeth C.; Sun, Nanbo; Sperling, Reisa A.; Sabuncu, Mert R.; Yeo, B. T. Thomas

    2016-01-01

    We used a data-driven Bayesian model to automatically identify distinct latent factors of overlapping atrophy patterns from voxelwise structural MRIs of late-onset Alzheimer’s disease (AD) dementia patients. Our approach estimated the extent to which multiple distinct atrophy patterns were expressed within each participant rather than assuming that each participant expressed a single atrophy factor. The model revealed a temporal atrophy factor (medial temporal cortex, hippocampus, and amygdala), a subcortical atrophy factor (striatum, thalamus, and cerebellum), and a cortical atrophy factor (frontal, parietal, lateral temporal, and lateral occipital cortices). To explore the influence of each factor in early AD, atrophy factor compositions were inferred in beta-amyloid–positive (Aβ+) mild cognitively impaired (MCI) and cognitively normal (CN) participants. All three factors were associated with memory decline across the entire clinical spectrum, whereas the cortical factor was associated with executive function decline in Aβ+ MCI participants and AD dementia patients. Direct comparison between factors revealed that the temporal factor showed the strongest association with memory, whereas the cortical factor showed the strongest association with executive function. The subcortical factor was associated with the slowest decline for both memory and executive function compared with temporal and cortical factors. These results suggest that distinct patterns of atrophy influence decline across different cognitive domains. Quantification of this heterogeneity may enable the computation of individual-level predictions relevant for disease monitoring and customized therapies. Factor compositions of participants and code used in this article are publicly available for future research. PMID:27702899

  18. A Multi-Scale Model of Hepcidin Promoter Regulation Reveals Factors Controlling Systemic Iron Homeostasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muckenthaler, Martina U.; Legewie, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Systemic iron homeostasis involves a negative feedback circuit in which the expression level of the peptide hormone hepcidin depends on and controls the iron blood levels. Hepcidin expression is regulated by the BMP6/SMAD and IL6/STAT signaling cascades. Deregulation of either pathway causes iron-related diseases such as hemochromatosis or anemia of inflammation. We quantitatively analyzed how BMP6 and IL6 control hepcidin expression. Transcription factor (TF) phosphorylation and reporter gene expression were measured under co-stimulation conditions, and the promoter was perturbed by mutagenesis. Using mathematical modeling, we systematically analyzed potential mechanisms of cooperative and competitive promoter regulation by the transcription factors, and experimentally validated the model predictions. Our results reveal that hepcidin cross-regulation primarily occurs by combinatorial transcription factor binding to the promoter, whereas signaling crosstalk is insignificant. We find that the presence of two BMP-responsive elements enhances the steepness of the promoter response towards the iron-sensing BMP signaling axis, which promotes iron homeostasis in vivo. IL6 co-stimulation reduces the promoter sensitivity towards the BMP signal, because the SMAD and STAT transcription factors compete for recruiting RNA polymerase to the transcription start site. This may explain why inflammatory signals disturb iron homeostasis in anemia of inflammation. Taken together, our results reveal why the iron homeostasis circuit is sensitive to perturbations implicated in disease. PMID:24391488

  19. A multi-scale model of hepcidin promoter regulation reveals factors controlling systemic iron homeostasis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillem Casanovas

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Systemic iron homeostasis involves a negative feedback circuit in which the expression level of the peptide hormone hepcidin depends on and controls the iron blood levels. Hepcidin expression is regulated by the BMP6/SMAD and IL6/STAT signaling cascades. Deregulation of either pathway causes iron-related diseases such as hemochromatosis or anemia of inflammation. We quantitatively analyzed how BMP6 and IL6 control hepcidin expression. Transcription factor (TF phosphorylation and reporter gene expression were measured under co-stimulation conditions, and the promoter was perturbed by mutagenesis. Using mathematical modeling, we systematically analyzed potential mechanisms of cooperative and competitive promoter regulation by the transcription factors, and experimentally validated the model predictions. Our results reveal that hepcidin cross-regulation primarily occurs by combinatorial transcription factor binding to the promoter, whereas signaling crosstalk is insignificant. We find that the presence of two BMP-responsive elements enhances the steepness of the promoter response towards the iron-sensing BMP signaling axis, which promotes iron homeostasis in vivo. IL6 co-stimulation reduces the promoter sensitivity towards the BMP signal, because the SMAD and STAT transcription factors compete for recruiting RNA polymerase to the transcription start site. This may explain why inflammatory signals disturb iron homeostasis in anemia of inflammation. Taken together, our results reveal why the iron homeostasis circuit is sensitive to perturbations implicated in disease.

  20. Non-parametric Bayesian graph models reveal community structure in resting state fMRI

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Kasper Winther; Madsen, Kristoffer H.; Siebner, Hartwig Roman

    2014-01-01

    Modeling of resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) data using network models is of increasing interest. It is often desirable to group nodes into clusters to interpret the communication patterns between nodes. In this study we consider three different nonparametric Bayesian...

  1. Seeing the forest and the trees: multilevel models reveal both species and community patterns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michelle M. Jackson; Monica G. Turner; Scott M. Pearson; Anthony R. Ives

    2012-01-01

    Studies designed to understand species distributions and community assemblages typically use separate analytical approaches (e.g., logistic regression and ordination) to model the distribution of individual species and to relate community composition to environmental variation. Multilevel models (MLMs) offer a promising strategy for integrating species and community-...

  2. Studies on DANESS Code Modeling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jeong, Chang Joon

    2009-09-01

    The DANESS code modeling study has been performed. DANESS code is widely used in a dynamic fuel cycle analysis. Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute (KAERI) has used the DANESS code for the Korean national nuclear fuel cycle scenario analysis. In this report, the important models such as Energy-demand scenario model, New Reactor Capacity Decision Model, Reactor and Fuel Cycle Facility History Model, and Fuel Cycle Model are investigated. And, some models in the interface module are refined and inserted for Korean nuclear fuel cycle model. Some application studies have also been performed for GNEP cases and for US fast reactor scenarios with various conversion ratios

  3. Complex patterns of divergence among green-sensitive (RH2a African cichlid opsins revealed by Clade model analyses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weadick Cameron J

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Gene duplications play an important role in the evolution of functional protein diversity. Some models of duplicate gene evolution predict complex forms of paralog divergence; orthologous proteins may diverge as well, further complicating patterns of divergence among and within gene families. Consequently, studying the link between protein sequence evolution and duplication requires the use of flexible substitution models that can accommodate multiple shifts in selection across a phylogeny. Here, we employed a variety of codon substitution models, primarily Clade models, to explore how selective constraint evolved following the duplication of a green-sensitive (RH2a visual pigment protein (opsin in African cichlids. Past studies have linked opsin divergence to ecological and sexual divergence within the African cichlid adaptive radiation. Furthermore, biochemical and regulatory differences between the RH2aα and RH2aβ paralogs have been documented. It thus seems likely that selection varies in complex ways throughout this gene family. Results Clade model analysis of African cichlid RH2a opsins revealed a large increase in the nonsynonymous-to-synonymous substitution rate ratio (ω following the duplication, as well as an even larger increase, one consistent with positive selection, for Lake Tanganyikan cichlid RH2aβ opsins. Analysis using the popular Branch-site models, by contrast, revealed no such alteration of constraint. Several amino acid sites known to influence spectral and non-spectral aspects of opsin biochemistry were found to be evolving divergently, suggesting that orthologous RH2a opsins may vary in terms of spectral sensitivity and response kinetics. Divergence appears to be occurring despite intronic gene conversion among the tandemly-arranged duplicates. Conclusions Our findings indicate that variation in selective constraint is associated with both gene duplication and divergence among orthologs in African

  4. Brain structure, function, and genetics revealed by studies of the eye and face.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sisodiya, Sanjay

    2008-08-01

    Understanding the structure and function of the human brain is intrinsically interesting and fundamental to improved diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of human neurological diseases, which constitute an increasing global burden. The intimate connections between brain and face, and brain and eye, have been utilized to access brain structure and function. Concepts and recent progress are reviewed here. Continued work on biological links between brain and eye or face has uncovered further genetic abnormalities causing facial or eye anomalies, which in either case may clearly indicate changes in the underlying brain. Cause and effect can be difficult to disentangle, but the use of conditional animal models can help establish whether brain changes are the result of face or eye changes or the result of a parallel influence on brain and eye or face. The application of newer methods and technologies such as parameterization of facial characteristics and comparative genomic hybridization has led to new discoveries and insights. Further interdisciplinary studies into brain structure and function through the windows of the face and the eye, with the application of genome-wide studies in larger cohorts, will potentially enable more discovery and critically may reveal unsuspected therapeutic targets in human disease.

  5. An atomic model of HIV-1 capsid-SP1 reveals structures regulating assembly and maturation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schur, Florian K M; Obr, Martin; Hagen, Wim J H; Wan, William; Jakobi, Arjen J; Kirkpatrick, Joanna M; Sachse, Carsten; Kräusslich, Hans-Georg; Briggs, John A G

    2016-07-29

    Immature HIV-1 assembles at and buds from the plasma membrane before proteolytic cleavage of the viral Gag polyprotein induces structural maturation. Maturation can be blocked by maturation inhibitors (MIs), thereby abolishing infectivity. The CA (capsid) and SP1 (spacer peptide 1) region of Gag is the key regulator of assembly and maturation and is the target of MIs. We applied optimized cryo-electron tomography and subtomogram averaging to resolve this region within assembled immature HIV-1 particles at 3.9 angstrom resolution and built an atomic model. The structure reveals a network of intra- and intermolecular interactions mediating immature HIV-1 assembly. The proteolytic cleavage site between CA and SP1 is inaccessible to protease. We suggest that MIs prevent CA-SP1 cleavage by stabilizing the structure, and MI resistance develops by destabilizing CA-SP1. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  6. Revealed social preference for potable groundwater: An Eastern Iowa case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raunikar, R. P.; Bernknopf, R. L.; Forney, W.; Mishra, S.

    2011-12-01

    The spatially explicit land use and land cover information provided by Landsat moderate-resolution land imagery (MRLI) is needed to more efficiently balance the production of goods and services over landscapes. For example, economic trade-offs are needed to provide both clean groundwater resources and other non-environmental goods and services produced by activities that affect the vadose zone and thus contribute to contamination of groundwater. These trade-off choices are made by numerous economic agents and are constrained by many social institutions including governmental regulations at many levels, contractual obligations and traditions. In effect, on a social level, society acts as if it values groundwater by foregoing other goods to protect these resources. The result of the protection afforded to groundwater resources is observable by measuring contamination in well samples. This observed level of groundwater contamination risk is the revealed preference of society as a whole for clean groundwater. We observed the risk of groundwater contamination in a sampling of well data from our study area (35 counties of Eastern Iowa.) We used a proportional hazard model to quantify the nitrate contamination survival implied by the panel of 19,873 well data, where remaining below a 10 mg/ml maximum contamination level (MCL) is defined as survival. We tested the data for evidence that the levels of protection provided to these resources is correlated with aquifer and vadose zone characteristics and geographic location and whether it changed over time and with economic and other conditions. We demonstrate the use of a nitrate conditioned hazard function for projecting the survival of wells based on nitrate exposure information over the 1940 to 2010 time period. We discuss results of simulations of the survival process that demonstrate the economic significance of this approach. We find that aquifer survival has been significantly improving over time. The principle of

  7. PhyloChip microarray analysis reveals altered gastrointestinal microbial communities in a rat model of colonic hypersensitivity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nelson, T.A.; Holmes, S.; Alekseyenko, A.V.; Shenoy, M.; DeSantis, T.; Wu, C.H.; Andersen, G.L.; Winston, J.; Sonnenburg, J.; Pasricha, P.J.; Spormann, A.

    2010-12-01

    Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a chronic, episodic gastrointestinal disorder that is prevalent in a significant fraction of western human populations; and changes in the microbiota of the large bowel have been implicated in the pathology of the disease. Using a novel comprehensive, high-density DNA microarray (PhyloChip) we performed a phylogenetic analysis of the microbial community of the large bowel in a rat model in which intracolonic acetic acid in neonates was used to induce long lasting colonic hypersensitivity and decreased stool water content and frequency, representing the equivalent of human constipation-predominant IBS. Our results revealed a significantly increased compositional difference in the microbial communities in rats with neonatal irritation as compared with controls. Even more striking was the dramatic change in the ratio of Firmicutes relative to Bacteroidetes, where neonatally irritated rats were enriched more with Bacteroidetes and also contained a different composition of species within this phylum. Our study also revealed differences at the level of bacterial families and species. The PhyloChip is a useful and convenient method to study enteric microflora. Further, this rat model system may be a useful experimental platform to study the causes and consequences of changes in microbial community composition associated with IBS.

  8. A genome-wide study reveals rare CNVs exclusive to extreme phenotypes of Alzheimer disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rovelet-Lecrux, Anne; Legallic, Solenn; Wallon, David; Flaman, Jean-Michel; Martinaud, Olivier; Bombois, Stéphanie; Rollin-Sillaire, Adeline; Michon, Agnès; Le Ber, Isabelle; Pariente, Jérémie; Puel, Michèle; Paquet, Claire; Croisile, Bernard; Thomas-Antérion, Catherine; Vercelletto, Martine; Lévy, Richard; Frébourg, Thierry; Hannequin, Didier; Campion, Dominique

    2012-06-01

    Studying rare extreme forms of Alzheimer disease (AD) may prove to be a useful strategy in identifying new genes involved in monogenic determinism of AD. Amyloid precursor protein (APP), PSEN1, and PSEN2 mutations account for only 85% of autosomal dominant early-onset AD (ADEOAD) families. We hypothesised that rare copy number variants (CNVs) could be involved in ADEOAD families without mutations in known genes, as well as in rare sporadic young-onset AD cases. Using high-resolution array comparative genomic hybridisation, we assessed the presence of rare CNVs in 21 unrelated ADEOAD cases, having no alteration on known genes, and 12 sporadic AD cases, with an age of onset younger than 55 years. The analysis revealed the presence of 7 singleton CNVs (4 in ADEOAD and 3 in sporadic cases) absent in 1078 controls and 912 late-onset AD cases. Strikingly, 4 out of 7 rearrangements target genes (KLK6, SLC30A3, MEOX2, and FPR2) encoding proteins that are tightly related to amyloid-β peptide metabolism or signalling. Although these variants are individually rare and restricted to particular subgroups of patients, these findings support the causal role, in human pathology, of a set of genes coding for molecules suspected for a long time to modify Aβ metabolism or signalling, and for which animal or cellular models have already been developed.

  9. Differential chromosome conformations as hallmarks of cellular identity revealed by mathematical polymer modeling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Imen Lassadi

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Inherently dynamic, chromosomes adopt many different conformations in response to DNA metabolism. Models of chromosome organization in the yeast nucleus obtained from genome-wide chromosome conformation data or biophysical simulations provide important insights into the average behavior but fail to reveal features from dynamic or transient events that are only visible in a fraction of cells at any given moment. We developed a method to determine chromosome conformation from relative positions of three fluorescently tagged DNA in living cells imaged in 3D. Cell type specific chromosome folding properties could be assigned based on positional combinations between three loci on yeast chromosome 3. We determined that the shorter left arm of chromosome 3 is extended in MATα cells, but can be crumpled in MATa cells. Furthermore, we implemented a new mathematical model that provides for the first time an estimate of the relative physical constraint of three linked loci related to cellular identity. Variations in this estimate allowed us to predict functional consequences from chromatin structural alterations in asf1 and recombination enhancer deletion mutant cells. The computational method is applicable to identify and characterize dynamic chromosome conformations in any cell type.

  10. Coordinating Role of RXRα in Downregulating Hepatic Detoxification during Inflammation Revealed by Fuzzy-Logic Modeling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roland Keller

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available During various inflammatory processes circulating cytokines including IL-6, IL-1β, and TNFα elicit a broad and clinically relevant impairment of hepatic detoxification that is based on the simultaneous downregulation of many drug metabolizing enzymes and transporter genes. To address the question whether a common mechanism is involved we treated human primary hepatocytes with IL-6, the major mediator of the acute phase response in liver, and characterized acute phase and detoxification responses in quantitative gene expression and (phospho-proteomics data sets. Selective inhibitors were used to disentangle the roles of JAK/STAT, MAPK, and PI3K signaling pathways. A prior knowledge-based fuzzy logic model comprising signal transduction and gene regulation was established and trained with perturbation-derived gene expression data from five hepatocyte donors. Our model suggests a greater role of MAPK/PI3K compared to JAK/STAT with the orphan nuclear receptor RXRα playing a central role in mediating transcriptional downregulation. Validation experiments revealed a striking similarity of RXRα gene silencing versus IL-6 induced negative gene regulation (rs = 0.79; P<0.0001. These results concur with RXRα functioning as obligatory heterodimerization partner for several nuclear receptors that regulate drug and lipid metabolism.

  11. Local-scale models reveal ecological niche variability in amphibian and reptile communities from two contrasting biogeographic regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alberto Muñoz

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Ecological Niche Models (ENMs are widely used to describe how environmental factors influence species distribution. Modelling at a local scale, compared to a large scale within a high environmental gradient, can improve our understanding of ecological species niches. The main goal of this study is to assess and compare the contribution of environmental variables to amphibian and reptile ENMs in two Spanish national parks located in contrasting biogeographic regions, i.e., the Mediterranean and the Atlantic area. The ENMs were built with maximum entropy modelling using 11 environmental variables in each territory. The contributions of these variables to the models were analysed and classified using various statistical procedures (Mann–Whitney U tests, Principal Components Analysis and General Linear Models. Distance to the hydrological network was consistently the most relevant variable for both parks and taxonomic classes. Topographic variables (i.e., slope and altitude were the second most predictive variables, followed by climatic variables. Differences in variable contribution were observed between parks and taxonomic classes. Variables related to water availability had the larger contribution to the models in the Mediterranean park, while topography variables were decisive in the Atlantic park. Specific response curves to environmental variables were in accordance with the biogeographic affinity of species (Mediterranean and non-Mediterranean species and taxonomy (amphibians and reptiles. Interestingly, these results were observed for species located in both parks, particularly those situated at their range limits. Our findings show that ecological niche models built at local scale reveal differences in habitat preferences within a wide environmental gradient. Therefore, modelling at local scales rather than assuming large-scale models could be preferable for the establishment of conservation strategies for herptile species in natural

  12. Transcriptional profiling reveals progeroid Ercc1-/Δ mice as a model system for glomerular aging

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background Aging-related kidney diseases are a major health concern. Currently, models to study renal aging are lacking. Due to a reduced life-span progeroid models hold the promise to facilitate aging studies and allow examination of tissue-specific changes. Defects in genome maintenance in the Ercc1-/Δ progeroid mouse model result in premature aging and typical age-related pathologies. Here, we compared the glomerular transcriptome of young and aged Ercc1-deficient mice to young and aged WT mice in order to establish a novel model for research of aging-related kidney disease. Results In a principal component analysis, age and genotype emerged as first and second principal components. Hierarchical clustering of all 521 genes differentially regulated between young and old WT and young and old Ercc1-/Δ mice showed cluster formation between young WT and Ercc1-/Δ as well as old WT and Ercc1-/Δ samples. An unexpectedly high number of 77 genes were differentially regulated in both WT and Ercc1-/Δ mice (p aging glomerulus. At the level of the transcriptome, the pattern of gene activities is similar in the progeroid Ercc1-/Δ mouse model constituting a valuable tool for future studies of aging-associated glomerular pathologies. PMID:23947592

  13. Combining experimental and mathematical modeling to reveal mechanisms of macrophage-dependent left ventricular remodeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dai Qiuxia

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Progressive remodeling of the left ventricle (LV following myocardial infarction (MI can lead to congestive heart failure, but the underlying initiation factors remain poorly defined. The objective of this study, accordingly, was to determine the key factors and elucidate the regulatory mechanisms of LV remodeling using integrated computational and experimental approaches. Results By examining the extracellular matrix (ECM gene expression and plasma analyte levels in C57/BL6J mice LV post-MI and ECM gene responses to transforming growth factor (TGF-β1 in cultured cardiac fibroblasts, we found that key factors in LV remodeling included macrophages, fibroblasts, transforming growth factor-β1, matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9, and specific collagen subtypes. We established a mathematical model to study LV remodeling post-MI by quantifying the dynamic balance between ECM construction and destruction. The mathematical model incorporated the key factors and demonstrated that TGF-β1 stimuli and MMP-9 interventions with different strengths and intervention times lead to different LV remodeling outcomes. The predictions of the mathematical model fell within the range of experimental measurements for these interventions, providing validation for the model. Conclusions In conclusion, our results demonstrated that the balance between ECM synthesis and degradation, controlled by interactions of specific key factors, determines the LV remodeling outcomes. Our mathematical model, based on the balance between ECM construction and destruction, provides a useful tool for studying the regulatory mechanisms and for predicting LV remodeling outcomes.

  14. Sexually dimorphic distribution of Prokr2 neurons revealed by the Prokr2-Cre mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohsen, Zaid; Sim, Hosung; Garcia-Galiano, David; Han, Xingfa; Bellefontaine, Nicole; Saunders, Thomas L; Elias, Carol F

    2017-12-01

    Prokineticin receptor 2 (PROKR2) is predominantly expressed in the mammalian central nervous system. Loss-of-function mutations of PROKR2 in humans are associated with Kallmann syndrome due to the disruption of gonadotropin releasing hormone neuronal migration and deficient olfactory bulb morphogenesis. PROKR2 has been also implicated in the neuroendocrine control of GnRH neurons post-migration and other physiological systems. However, the brain circuitry and mechanisms associated with these actions have been difficult to investigate mainly due to the widespread distribution of Prokr2-expressing cells, and the lack of animal models and molecular tools. Here, we describe the generation, validation and characterization of a new mouse model that expresses Cre recombinase driven by the Prokr2 promoter, using CRISPR-Cas9 technology. Cre expression was visualized using reporter genes, tdTomato and GFP, in males and females. Expression of Cre-induced reporter genes was found in brain sites previously described to express Prokr2, e.g., the paraventricular and the suprachiasmatic nuclei, and the area postrema. The Prokr2-Cre mouse model was further validated by colocalization of Cre-induced GFP and Prokr2 mRNA. No disruption of Prokr2 expression, GnRH neuronal migration or fertility was observed. Comparative analysis of Prokr2-Cre expression in male and female brains revealed a sexually dimorphic distribution confirmed by in situ hybridization. In females, higher Cre activity was found in the medial preoptic area, ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus, arcuate nucleus, medial amygdala and lateral parabrachial nucleus. In males, Cre was higher in the amygdalo-hippocampal area. The sexually dimorphic pattern of Prokr2 expression indicates differential roles in reproductive function and, potentially, in other physiological systems.

  15. Biochemistry and structural studies of kynurenine 3-monooxygenase reveal allosteric inhibition by Ro 61-8048.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Jingjing; Yao, Licheng; Xia, Tingting; Liao, Xuebin; Zhu, Deyu; Xiang, Ye

    2018-04-01

    The human kynurenine 3-monooxygenase (hKMO) is a potential therapeutic target for neurodegenerative and neurologic disorders. Inhibition of KMO by Ro 61-8048, a potent, selective, and the most widely used inhibitor of KMO, was shown effective in various models of neurodegenerative or neurologic disorders. However, the molecular basis of hKMO inhibition by Ro 61-8048 is not clearly understood. Here, we report biochemistry studies on hKMO and crystal structures of an hKMO homolog, pfKMO from Pseudomonas fluorescens, in complex with the substrate l-kynurenine and Ro 61-8048. We found that the C-terminal ∼110 aa are essential for the enzymatic activity of hKMO and the homologous C-terminal region of pfKMO folds into a distinct, all-α-helical domain, which associates with the N-terminal catalytic domain to form a unique tunnel in proximity to the substrate-binding pocket. The tunnel binds the Ro 61-8048 molecule, which fills most of the tunnel, and Ro 61-8048 is hydrogen bonded with several completely conserved residues, including an essential catalytic residue. Modification of Ro 61-8048 and biochemical studies of the modified Ro 61-8048 derivatives suggested that Ro 61-8048 inhibits the enzyme in an allosteric manner by affecting the conformation of the essential catalytic residue and by blocking entry of the substrate or product release. The unique binding sites distinguish Ro 61-8048 as a noncompetitive and highly selective inhibitor from other competitive inhibitors, which should facilitate further optimization of Ro 61-8048 and the development of new inhibitory drugs to hKMO.-Gao, J., Yao, L., Xia, T., Liao, X., Zhu, D., Xiang, Y. Biochemistry and structural studies of kynurenine 3-monooxygenase reveal allosteric inhibition by Ro 61-8048.

  16. Integrative demographic modeling reveals population level impacts of PCB toxicity to juvenile snapping turtles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Salice, Christopher J.; Rowe, Christopher L.; Eisenreich, Karen M.

    2014-01-01

    A significant challenge in ecotoxicology and risk assessment lies in placing observed contaminant effects in a meaningful ecological context. Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) have been shown to affect juvenile snapping turtle survival and growth but the ecological significance of these effects is difficult to discern without a formal, population-level assessment. We used a demographic matrix model to explore the potential population-level effects of PCBs on turtles. Our model showed that effects of PCBs on juvenile survival, growth and size at hatching could translate to negative effects at the population level despite the fact that these life cycle components do not typically contribute strongly to population level processes. This research points to the utility of using integrative demographic modeling approaches to better understand contaminant effects in wildlife. The results indicate that population-level effects are only evident after several years, suggesting that for long-lived species, detecting adverse contaminant effects could prove challenging. -- Highlights: • Previous studies have shown the PCBs can impact juvenile snapping turtles. • We used a demographic model of turtles to evaluate population-level PCB effects. • PCB effects on turtles may translate to negative population responses. • Long-term monitoring is needed to detect contaminant effects on natural turtle populations. • Demographic models can improve our understanding contaminant ecotoxicity. -- A demographic model was used to show that PCB induced effects on young snapping turtles can result in adverse effects at the population level

  17. Complex mean circulation over the inner shelf south of Martha's Vineyard revealed by observations and a high-resolution model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ganju, Neil K.; Lentz, Steven J.; Kirincich, Anthony R.; Farrar, J. Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Inner-shelf circulation is governed by the interaction between tides, baroclinic forcing, winds, waves, and frictional losses; the mean circulation ultimately governs exchange between the coast and ocean. In some cases, oscillatory tidal currents interact with bathymetric features to generate a tidally rectified flow. Recent observational and modeling efforts in an overlapping domain centered on the Martha's Vineyard Coastal Observatory (MVCO) provided an opportunity to investigate the spatial and temporal complexity of circulation on the inner shelf. ADCP and surface radar observations revealed a mean circulation pattern that was highly variable in the alongshore and cross-shore directions. Nested modeling incrementally improved representation of the mean circulation as grid resolution increased and indicated tidal rectification as the generation mechanism of a counter-clockwise gyre near the MVCO. The loss of model skill with decreasing resolution is attributed to insufficient representation of the bathymetric gradients (Δh/h), which is important for representing nonlinear interactions between currents and bathymetry. The modeled momentum balance was characterized by large spatial variability of the pressure gradient and horizontal advection terms over short distances, suggesting that observed inner-shelf momentum balances may be confounded. Given the available observational and modeling data, this work defines the spatially variable mean circulation and its formation mechanism—tidal rectification—and illustrates the importance of model resolution for resolving circulation and constituent exchange near the coast. The results of this study have implications for future observational and modeling studies near the MVCO and other inner-shelf locations with alongshore bathymetric variability.

  18. Cell type-specific functions of period genes revealed by novel adipocyte and hepatocyte circadian clock models.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chidambaram Ramanathan

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available In animals, circadian rhythms in physiology and behavior result from coherent rhythmic interactions between clocks in the brain and those throughout the body. Despite the many tissue specific clocks, most understanding of the molecular core clock mechanism comes from studies of the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN of the hypothalamus and a few other cell types. Here we report establishment and genetic characterization of three cell-autonomous mouse clock models: 3T3 fibroblasts, 3T3-L1 adipocytes, and MMH-D3 hepatocytes. Each model is genetically tractable and has an integrated luciferase reporter that allows for longitudinal luminescence recording of rhythmic clock gene expression using an inexpensive off-the-shelf microplate reader. To test these cellular models, we generated a library of short hairpin RNAs (shRNAs against a panel of known clock genes and evaluated their impact on circadian rhythms. Knockdown of Bmal1, Clock, Cry1, and Cry2 each resulted in similar phenotypes in all three models, consistent with previous studies. However, we observed cell type-specific knockdown phenotypes for the Period and Rev-Erb families of clock genes. In particular, Per1 and Per2, which have strong behavioral effects in knockout mice, appear to play different roles in regulating period length and amplitude in these peripheral systems. Per3, which has relatively modest behavioral effects in knockout mice, substantially affects period length in the three cellular models and in dissociated SCN neurons. In summary, this study establishes new cell-autonomous clock models that are of particular relevance to metabolism and suitable for screening for clock modifiers, and reveals previously under-appreciated cell type-specific functions of clock genes.

  19. Revealing structures in narratives: A mixed-methods approach to studying interdisciplinary handoff in critical care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mamykina, Lena; Jiang, Silis; Collins, Sarah A; Twohig, Bridget; Hirsh, Jamie; Hripcsak, George; Stanley Hum, R; Kaufman, David R

    2016-08-01

    To examine a novel mixed-methods approach for studying patterns of clinical communication that could inform future informatics solutions, with a specific focus on handoff within interdisciplinary teams. Researchers observed, recorded, and transcribed verbal handoff discussions of different members of critical care teams. The transcripts were coded qualitatively, and then analyzed quantitatively for emerging structural patterns using categorical cluster analysis, and for degree of shared mental models (SMM) using the modified Pyramid method. An empirical study using the proposed mixed-methods approach suggested emerging patterns of communication among clinicians. For example, the temporal focus of handoff was often determined by the role of the clinician giving the handoff; the clinical content of handoff was consistent between clinicians, but varied between patients. The SMM index ranged from 0.065 (with the maximum possible overlap score of 1) to 0.007 with a median of 0.026; the overlap was higher in statements concerned with patient presentation (23.6% of these had overlap) and referring to the past (24% overlapped). This calculated SMM index was correlated with the assessment of coherence within the participating teams by independent physicians (r=0.63, p=0.038). The proposed novel mixed-methods approach helped to reveal emerging patterns in content and structure of handoff communication and highlight differences due to the clinical context, and to the different priorities of clinicians on interdisciplinary patient care teams. The approach for calculating SMM is more ecologically sensitive as it relies on naturally occurring discourse and less intrusive than traditional ways of assessing SMM, and takes initial steps toward establishing empirical foundation for the design of electronic tools to support handoff in interdisciplinary teams. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  20. Improvising in music: A learning biography study to reveal skill acquisition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wopereis, Iwan; Van Merriënboer, Jeroen; Kirschner, Paul A.

    2010-01-01

    Wopereis, I. G. J. H., Van Merriënboer, J. J. G., & Kirschner, P. A. (2010). Improvising in music: A learning biography study to reveal skill acquisition. In K. Gomez, L. Lyons, & J. Radinsky (Eds.), Proceedings of the 9th International Conference of the Learning Sciences: Vol. 2 (pp. 419-420).

  1. Dynamic habitat suitability modelling reveals rapid poleward distribution shift in a mobile apex predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Nicholas J; Tobin, Andrew J; Reside, April E; Pepperell, Julian G; Bridge, Tom C L

    2016-03-01

    Many taxa are undergoing distribution shifts in response to anthropogenic climate change. However, detecting a climate signal in mobile species is difficult due to their wide-ranging, patchy distributions, often driven by natural climate variability. For example, difficulties associated with assessing pelagic fish distributions have rendered fisheries management ill-equipped to adapt to the challenges posed by climate change, leaving pelagic species and ecosystems vulnerable. Here, we demonstrate the value of citizen science data for modelling the dynamic habitat suitability of a mobile pelagic predator (black marlin, Istiompax indica) within the south-west Pacific Ocean. The extensive spatial and temporal coverage of our occurrence data set (n = 18 717), collected at high resolution (~1.85 km(2) ), enabled identification of suitable habitat at monthly time steps over a 16-year period (1998-2013). We identified considerable monthly, seasonal and interannual variability in the extent and distribution of suitable habitat, predominately driven by chlorophyll a and sea surface height. Interannual variability correlated with El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events, with suitable habitat extending up to ~300 km further south during La Nina events. Despite the strong influence of ENSO, our model revealed a rapid poleward shift in the geometric mean of black marlin habitat, occurring at 88.2 km decade(-1) . By incorporating multiple environmental factors at monthly time steps, we were able to demonstrate a rapid distribution shift in a mobile pelagic species. Our findings suggest that the rapid velocity of climate change in the south-west Pacific Ocean is likely affecting mobile pelagic species, indicating that they may be more vulnerable to climate change than previously thought. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  2. Robust hierarchical state-space models reveal diel variation in travel rates of migrating leatherback turtles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonsen, Ian D; Myers, Ransom A; James, Michael C

    2006-09-01

    1. Biological and statistical complexity are features common to most ecological data that hinder our ability to extract meaningful patterns using conventional tools. Recent work on implementing modern statistical methods for analysis of such ecological data has focused primarily on population dynamics but other types of data, such as animal movement pathways obtained from satellite telemetry, can also benefit from the application of modern statistical tools. 2. We develop a robust hierarchical state-space approach for analysis of multiple satellite telemetry pathways obtained via the Argos system. State-space models are time-series methods that allow unobserved states and biological parameters to be estimated from data observed with error. We show that the approach can reveal important patterns in complex, noisy data where conventional methods cannot. 3. Using the largest Atlantic satellite telemetry data set for critically endangered leatherback turtles, we show that the diel pattern in travel rates of these turtles changes over different phases of their migratory cycle. While foraging in northern waters the turtles show similar travel rates during day and night, but on their southward migration to tropical waters travel rates are markedly faster during the day. These patterns are generally consistent with diving data, and may be related to changes in foraging behaviour. Interestingly, individuals that migrate southward to breed generally show higher daytime travel rates than individuals that migrate southward in a non-breeding year. 4. Our approach is extremely flexible and can be applied to many ecological analyses that use complex, sequential data.

  3. Simple analytical model reveals the functional role of embodied sensorimotor interaction in hexapod gaits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aoi, Shinya; Nachstedt, Timo; Manoonpong, Poramate; Wörgötter, Florentin; Matsuno, Fumitoshi

    2018-01-01

    Insects have various gaits with specific characteristics and can change their gaits smoothly in accordance with their speed. These gaits emerge from the embodied sensorimotor interactions that occur between the insect’s neural control and body dynamic systems through sensory feedback. Sensory feedback plays a critical role in coordinated movements such as locomotion, particularly in stick insects. While many previously developed insect models can generate different insect gaits, the functional role of embodied sensorimotor interactions in the interlimb coordination of insects remains unclear because of their complexity. In this study, we propose a simple physical model that is amenable to mathematical analysis to explain the functional role of these interactions clearly. We focus on a foot contact sensory feedback called phase resetting, which regulates leg retraction timing based on touchdown information. First, we used a hexapod robot to determine whether the distributed decoupled oscillators used for legs with the sensory feedback generate insect-like gaits through embodied sensorimotor interactions. The robot generated two different gaits and one had similar characteristics to insect gaits. Next, we proposed the simple model as a minimal model that allowed us to analyze and explain the gait mechanism through the embodied sensorimotor interactions. The simple model consists of a rigid body with massless springs acting as legs, where the legs are controlled using oscillator phases with phase resetting, and the governed equations are reduced such that they can be explained using only the oscillator phases with some approximations. This simplicity leads to analytical solutions for the hexapod gaits via perturbation analysis, despite the complexity of the embodied sensorimotor interactions. This is the first study to provide an analytical model for insect gaits under these interaction conditions. Our results clarified how this specific foot contact sensory

  4. Model-based reasoning: using visual tools to reveal student learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luckie, Douglas; Harrison, Scott H; Ebert-May, Diane

    2011-03-01

    Using visual models is common in science and should become more common in classrooms. Our research group has developed and completed studies on the use of a visual modeling tool, the Concept Connector. This modeling tool consists of an online concept mapping Java applet that has automatic scoring functions we refer to as Robograder. The Concept Connector enables students in large introductory science courses to visualize their thinking through online model building. The Concept Connector's flexible scoring system, based on tested grading schemes as well as instructor input, has enabled >1,000 physiology students to build maps of their ideas about plant and animal physiology with the guidance of automatic and immediate online scoring of homework. Criterion concept maps developed by instructors in this project contain numerous expert-generated or "correct" propositions connecting two concept words together with a linking phrase. In this study, holistic algorithms were used to test automated methods of scoring concept maps that might work as well as a human grader.

  5. The NMR-Rosetta capsid model of M13 bacteriophage reveals a quadrupled hydrophobic packing epitope.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morag, Omry; Sgourakis, Nikolaos G; Baker, David; Goldbourt, Amir

    2015-01-27

    Filamentous phage are elongated semiflexible ssDNA viruses that infect bacteria. The M13 phage, belonging to the family inoviridae, has a length of ∼1 μm and a diameter of ∼7 nm. Here we present a structural model for the capsid of intact M13 bacteriophage using Rosetta model building guided by structure restraints obtained from magic-angle spinning solid-state NMR experimental data. The C5 subunit symmetry observed in fiber diffraction studies was enforced during model building. The structure consists of stacked pentamers with largely alpha helical subunits containing an N-terminal type II β-turn; there is a rise of 16.6-16.7 Å and a tilt of 36.1-36.6° between consecutive pentamers. The packing of the subunits is stabilized by a repeating hydrophobic stacking pocket; each subunit participates in four pockets by contributing different hydrophobic residues, which are spread along the subunit sequence. Our study provides, to our knowledge, the first magic-angle spinning NMR structure of an intact filamentous virus capsid and further demonstrates the strength of this technique as a method of choice to study noncrystalline, high-molecular-weight molecular assemblies.

  6. Mouse Genetic Models Reveal Surprising Functions of IκB Kinase Alpha in Skin Development and Skin Carcinogenesis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xia, Xiaojun [The Methodist Hospital Research Institute, Houston, TX 77030 (United States); Park, Eunmi [Department of Radiation Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115 (United States); Fischer, Susan M. [Department of Molecular Carcinogenesis, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Smithville, TX 78967 (United States); Hu, Yinling, E-mail: huy2@mail.nih.gov [Cancer and Inflammation Program, Center for Cancer Research, Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research, Frederick, MD 21701 (United States)

    2013-02-15

    Gene knockout studies unexpectedly reveal a pivotal role for IκB kinase alpha (IKKα) in mouse embryonic skin development. Skin carcinogenesis experiments show that Ikkα heterozygous mice are highly susceptible to chemical carcinogen or ultraviolet B light (UVB) induced benign and malignant skin tumors in comparison to wild-type mice. IKKα deletion mediated by keratin 5 (K5).Cre or K15.Cre in keratinocytes induces epidermal hyperplasia and spontaneous skin squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs) in Ikkα floxed mice. On the other hand, transgenic mice overexpressing IKKα in the epidermis, under the control of a truncated loricrin promoter or K5 promoter, develop normal skin and show no defects in the formation of the epidermis and other epithelial organs, and the transgenic IKKα represses chemical carcinogen or UVB induced skin carcinogenesis. Moreover, IKKα deletion mediated by a mutation, which generates a stop codon in the Ikkα gene, has been reported in a human autosomal recessive lethal syndrome. Downregulated IKKα and Ikkα mutations and deletions are found in human skin SCCs. The collective evidence not only highlights the importance of IKKα in skin development, maintaining skin homeostasis, and preventing skin carcinogenesis, but also demonstrates that mouse models are extremely valuable tools for revealing the mechanisms underlying these biological events, leading our studies from bench side to bedside.

  7. Integrated population modeling reveals the impact of climate on the survival of juvenile emperor penguins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abadi, Fitsum; Barbraud, Christophe; Gimenez, Olivier

    2017-03-01

    Early-life demographic traits are poorly known, impeding our understanding of population processes and sensitivity to climate change. Survival of immature individuals is a critical component of population dynamics and recruitment in particular. However, obtaining reliable estimates of juvenile survival (i.e., from independence to first year) remains challenging, as immatures are often difficult to observe and to monitor individually in the field. This is particularly acute for seabirds, in which juveniles stay at sea and remain undetectable for several years. In this work, we developed a Bayesian integrated population model to estimate the juvenile survival of emperor penguins (Aptenodytes forsteri), and other demographic parameters including adult survival and fecundity of the species. Using this statistical method, we simultaneously analyzed capture-recapture data of adults, the annual number of breeding females, and the number of fledglings of emperor penguins collected at Dumont d'Urville, Antarctica, for the period 1971-1998. We also assessed how climate covariates known to affect the species foraging habitats and prey [southern annular mode (SAM), sea ice concentration (SIC)] affect juvenile survival. Our analyses revealed that there was a strong evidence for the positive effect of SAM during the rearing period (SAMR) on juvenile survival. Our findings suggest that this large-scale climate index affects juvenile emperor penguins body condition and survival through its influence on wind patterns, fast ice extent, and distance to open water. Estimating the influence of environmental covariates on juvenile survival is of major importance to understand the impacts of climate variability and change on the population dynamics of emperor penguins and seabirds in general and to make robust predictions on the impact of climate change on marine predators. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Hypothalamus proteomics from mouse models with obesity and anorexia reveals therapeutic targets of appetite regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manousopoulou, A; Koutmani, Y; Karaliota, S; Woelk, C H; Manolakos, E S; Karalis, K; Garbis, S D

    2016-04-25

    This study examined the proteomic profile of the hypothalamus in mice exposed to a high-fat diet (HFD) or with the anorexia of acute illness. This comparison could provide insight on the effects of these two opposite states of energy balance on appetite regulation. Four to six-week-old male C56BL/6J mice were fed a normal (control 1 group; n=7) or a HFD (HFD group; n=10) for 8 weeks. The control 2 (n=7) and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) groups (n=10) were fed a normal diet for 8 weeks before receiving an injection of saline and LPS, respectively. Hypothalamic regions were analysed using a quantitative proteomics method based on a combination of techniques including iTRAQ stable isotope labeling, orthogonal two-dimensional liquid chromatography hyphenated with nanospray ionization and high-resolution mass spectrometry. Key proteins were validated with quantitative PCR. Quantitative proteomics of the hypothalamous regions profiled a total of 9249 protein groups (q<0.05). Of these, 7718 protein groups were profiled with a minimum of two unique peptides for each. Hierachical clustering of the differentiated proteome revealed distinct proteomic signatures for the hypothalamus under the HFD and LPS nutritional conditions. Literature research with in silico bioinformatics interpretation of the differentiated proteome identified key biological relevant proteins and implicated pathways. Furthermore, the study identified potential pharmacologic targets. In the LPS groups, the anorexigen pro-opiomelanocortin was downregulated. In mice with obesity, nuclear factor-κB, glycine receptor subunit alpha-4 (GlyR) and neuropeptide Y levels were elevated, whereas serotonin receptor 1B levels decreased. High-precision quantitative proteomics revealed that under acute systemic inflammation in the hypothalamus as a response to LPS, homeostatic mechanisms mediating loss of appetite take effect. Conversely, under chronic inflammation in the hypothalamus as a response to HFD, mechanisms

  9. How Do Multiple-Star Systems Form? VLA Study Reveals "Smoking Gun"

    Science.gov (United States)

    2006-12-01

    system, all the antennas could provide data for us. In addition, we improved the level of detail by using the Pie Town, NM, antenna of the Very Long Baseline Array, as part of an expanded system," Lim said. The implementation and improvement of the 43 GHz receiving system was a collaborative program among the German Max Planck Institute, the Mexican National Autonomous University, and the U.S. National Radio Astronomy Observatory. Two popular theoretical models for the formation of multiple-star systems are, first, that the two protostars and their surrounding dusty disks fragment from a larger parent disk, and, second, that the protostars form independently and then one captures the other into a mutual orbit. "Our new study shows that the disks of the two main protostars are aligned with each other, and also are aligned with the larger, surrounding disk. In addition, their orbital motion resembles the rotation of the larger disk. This is a 'smoking gun' supporting the fragmentation model," Lim said. However, the new study also revealed a third young star with a dust disk. "The disk of this one is misaligned with those of the other two, so it may be the result of either fragmentation or capture," Takakuwa said. The misalignment of the third disk could have come through gravitational interactions with the other two, larger, protostars, the scientists said. They plan further observations to try to resolve the question. "We have a very firm indication that two of these protostars and their dust disks formed from the same, larger disk-like cloud, then broke out from it in a fragmentation process. That strongly supports one theoretical model for how multiple-star systems are formed. The misalignment of the third protostar and its disk leaves open the possibility that it could have formed elsewhere and been captured, and we'll continue to work on reconstructing the history of this fascinating system," Lim summarized. The National Radio Astronomy Observatory is a facility of

  10. Anti-inflammatory Effects of Fungal Metabolites in Mouse Intestine as Revealed by In vitro Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dominik Schreiber

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD, which include Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, are chronic inflammatory disorders that can affect the whole gastrointestinal tract or the colonic mucosal layer. Current therapies aiming to suppress the exaggerated immune response in IBD largely rely on compounds with non-satisfying effects or side-effects. Therefore, new therapeutical options are needed. In the present study, we investigated the anti-inflammatory effects of the fungal metabolites, galiellalactone, and dehydrocurvularin in both an in vitro intestinal inflammation model, as well as in isolated myenteric plexus and enterocyte cells. Administration of a pro-inflammatory cytokine mix through the mesenteric artery of intestinal segments caused an up-regulation of inflammatory marker genes. Treatment of the murine intestinal segments with galiellalactone or dehydrocurvularin by application through the mesenteric artery significantly prevented the expression of pro-inflammatory marker genes on the mRNA and the protein level. Comparable to the results in the perfused intestine model, treatment of primary enteric nervous system (ENS cells from the murine intestine with the fungal compounds reduced expression of cytokines such as IL-6, TNF-α, IL-1β, and inflammatory enzymes such as COX-2 and iNOS on mRNA and protein levels. Similar anti-inflammatory effects of the fungal metabolites were observed in the human colorectal adenocarcinoma cell line DLD-1 after stimulation with IFN-γ (10 ng/ml, TNF-α (10 ng/ml, and IL-1β (5 ng/ml. Our results show that the mesenterially perfused intestine model provides a reliable tool for the screening of new therapeutics with limited amounts of test compounds. Furthermore, we could characterize the anti-inflammatory effects of two novel active compounds, galiellalactone, and dehydrocurvularin which are interesting candidates for studies with chronic animal models of IBD.

  11. Chick embryo xenograft model reveals a novel perineural niche for human adipose-derived stromal cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ingrid R. Cordeiro

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Human adipose-derived stromal cells (hADSC are a heterogeneous cell population that contains adult multipotent stem cells. Although it is well established that hADSC have skeletal potential in vivo in adult organisms, in vitro assays suggest further differentiation capacity, such as into glia. Thus, we propose that grafting hADSC into the embryo can provide them with a much more instructive microenvironment, allowing the human cells to adopt diverse fates or niches. Here, hADSC spheroids were grafted into either the presumptive presomitic mesoderm or the first branchial arch (BA1 regions of chick embryos. Cells were identified without previous manipulations via human-specific Alu probes, which allows efficient long-term tracing of heterogeneous primary cultures. When grafted into the trunk, in contrast to previous studies, hADSC were not found in chondrogenic or osteogenic territories up to E8. Surprisingly, 82.5% of the hADSC were associated with HNK1+ tissues, such as peripheral nerves. Human skin fibroblasts showed a smaller tropism for nerves. In line with other studies, hADSC also adopted perivascular locations. When grafted into the presumptive BA1, 74.6% of the cells were in the outflow tract, the final goal of cardiac neural crest cells, and were also associated with peripheral nerves. This is the first study showing that hADSC could adopt a perineural niche in vivo and were able to recognize cues for neural crest cell migration of the host. Therefore, we propose that xenografts of human cells into chick embryos can reveal novel behaviors of heterogeneous cell populations, such as response to migration cues.

  12. Integrated biology approach reveals molecular and pathological interactions among Alzheimer's Aβ42, Tau, TREM2, and TYROBP in Drosophila models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sekiya, Michiko; Wang, Minghui; Fujisaki, Naoki; Sakakibara, Yasufumi; Quan, Xiuming; Ehrlich, Michelle E; De Jager, Philip L; Bennett, David A; Schadt, Eric E; Gandy, Sam; Ando, Kanae; Zhang, Bin; Iijima, Koichi M

    2018-03-29

    Cerebral amyloidosis, neuroinflammation, and tauopathy are key features of Alzheimer's disease (AD), but interactions among these features remain poorly understood. Our previous multiscale molecular network models of AD revealed TYROBP as a key driver of an immune- and microglia-specific network that was robustly associated with AD pathophysiology. Recent genetic studies of AD further identified pathogenic mutations in both TREM2 and TYROBP. In this study, we systematically examined molecular and pathological interactions among Aβ, tau, TREM2, and TYROBP by integrating signatures from transgenic Drosophila models of AD and transcriptome-wide gene co-expression networks from two human AD cohorts. Glial expression of TREM2/TYROBP exacerbated tau-mediated neurodegeneration and synergistically affected pathways underlying late-onset AD pathology, while neuronal Aβ42 and glial TREM2/TYROBP synergistically altered expression of the genes in synaptic function and immune modules in AD. The comprehensive pathological and molecular data generated through this study strongly validate the causal role of TREM2/TYROBP in driving molecular networks in AD and AD-related phenotypes in flies.

  13. Mathematical Modelling Research in Turkey: A Content Analysis Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Çelik, H. Coskun

    2017-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to examine the mathematical modelling studies done between 2004 and 2015 in Turkey and to reveal their tendencies. Forty-nine studies were selected using purposeful sampling based on the term, "mathematical modelling" with Higher Education Academic Search Engine. They were analyzed with content analysis.…

  14. Revealing the regime of shallow coral reefs at patch scale by continuous spatial modeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antoine eCollin

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Reliably translating real-world spatial patterns of ecosystems is critical for understanding processes susceptible to reinforce resilience. However the great majority of studies in spatial ecology use thematic maps to describe habitats and species in a binary scheme. By discretizing the transitional areas and neglecting the gradual replacement across a given space, the thematic approach may suffer from substantial limitations when interpreting patterns created by many continuous variables. Here, local and regional spectral proxies were used to design and spatially map at very fine scale a continuous index dedicated to one of the most complex seascapes, the coral reefscape. Through a groundbreaking merge of bottom-up and top-down approach, we demonstrate that three to seven-habitat continuous indices can be modeled by nine, six, four and three spectral proxies, respectively, at 0.5 m spatial resolution using hand- and spaceborne measurements. We map the seven-habitat continuous index, spanning major Indo-Pacific coral reef habitats through the far red-green normalized difference ratio over the entire lagoon of a low (Tetiaroa atoll and a high volcanic (Moorea island in French Polynesia with 84% and 82% accuracy, respectively. Further examinations of the two resulting spatial models using a customized histoscape (density function of model values distributed on a concentric strip across the reef crest-coastline distance show that Tetiaroa exhibits a greater variety of coral reef habitats than Moorea. By designing such easy-to-implement, transferrable spectral proxies of coral reef regime, this study initiates a framework for spatial ecologists tackling coral reef biodiversity, responses to stresses, perturbations and shifts. We discuss the limitations and contributions of our findings towards the study of worldwide coral reef resilience following stochastic environmental change.

  15. Evolutionary profiling reveals the heterogeneous origins of classes of human disease genes: implications for modeling disease genetics in animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maxwell, Evan K; Schnitzler, Christine E; Havlak, Paul; Putnam, Nicholas H; Nguyen, Anh-Dao; Moreland, R Travis; Baxevanis, Andreas D

    2014-10-04

    The recent expansion of whole-genome sequence data available from diverse animal lineages provides an opportunity to investigate the evolutionary origins of specific classes of human disease genes. Previous studies have observed that human disease genes are of particularly ancient origin. While this suggests that many animal species have the potential to serve as feasible models for research on genes responsible for human disease, it is unclear whether this pattern has meaningful implications and whether it prevails for every class of human disease. We used a comparative genomics approach encompassing a broad phylogenetic range of animals with sequenced genomes to determine the evolutionary patterns exhibited by human genes associated with different classes of disease. Our results support previous claims that most human disease genes are of ancient origin but, more importantly, we also demonstrate that several specific disease classes have a significantly large proportion of genes that emerged relatively recently within the metazoans and/or vertebrates. An independent assessment of the synonymous to non-synonymous substitution rates of human disease genes found in mammals reveals that disease classes that arose more recently also display unexpected rates of purifying selection between their mammalian and human counterparts. Our results reveal the heterogeneity underlying the evolutionary origins of (and selective pressures on) different classes of human disease genes. For example, some disease gene classes appear to be of uncommonly recent (i.e., vertebrate-specific) origin and, as a whole, have been evolving at a faster rate within mammals than the majority of disease classes having more ancient origins. The novel patterns that we have identified may provide new insight into cases where studies using traditional animal models were unable to produce results that translated to humans. Conversely, we note that the larger set of disease classes do have ancient origins

  16. Integrative modeling reveals the principles of multi-scale chromatin boundary formation in human nuclear organization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Benjamin L; Aitken, Stuart; Semple, Colin A

    2015-05-27

    Interphase chromosomes adopt a hierarchical structure, and recent data have characterized their chromatin organization at very different scales, from sub-genic regions associated with DNA-binding proteins at the order of tens or hundreds of bases, through larger regions with active or repressed chromatin states, up to multi-megabase-scale domains associated with nuclear positioning, replication timing and other qualities. However, we have lacked detailed, quantitative models to understand the interactions between these different strata. Here we collate large collections of matched locus-level chromatin features and Hi-C interaction data, representing higher-order organization, across three human cell types. We use quantitative modeling approaches to assess whether locus-level features are sufficient to explain higher-order structure, and identify the most influential underlying features. We identify structurally variable domains between cell types and examine the underlying features to discover a general association with cell-type-specific enhancer activity. We also identify the most prominent features marking the boundaries of two types of higher-order domains at different scales: topologically associating domains and nuclear compartments. We find parallel enrichments of particular chromatin features for both types, including features associated with active promoters and the architectural proteins CTCF and YY1. We show that integrative modeling of large chromatin dataset collections using random forests can generate useful insights into chromosome structure. The models produced recapitulate known biological features of the cell types involved, allow exploration of the antecedents of higher-order structures and generate testable hypotheses for further experimental studies.

  17. State-space modelling reveals proximate causes of harbour seal population declines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matthiopoulos, Jason; Cordes, Line; Mackey, Beth; Thompson, David; Duck, Callan; Smout, Sophie; Caillat, Marjolaine; Thompson, Paul

    2014-01-01

    Declines in large vertebrate populations are widespread but difficult to detect from monitoring data and hard to understand due to a multiplicity of plausible biological explanations. In parts of Scotland, harbour seals (Phoca vitulina) have been in decline for 10 years. To evaluate the contributions of different proximate causes (survival, fecundity, observation artefacts) to this decline, we collated behavioural, demographic and population data from one intensively studied population in part of the Moray Firth (north-east Scotland). To these, we fit a state-space model comprising age-structured dynamics and a detailed account of observation errors. After accounting for culling (estimated by our model as 14% of total mortality), the main driver of the historical population decline was a decreasing trend in survival of young individuals combined with (previously unrecognised) low levels of pupping success. In more recent years, the model provides evidence for considerable increases in breeding success and consistently high levels of adult survival. However, breeding success remains the most volatile demographic component of the population. Forecasts from the model indicate a slow population recovery, providing cautious support for recent management measures. Such investigations of the proximate causes of population change (survival, fecundity and observation errors) provide valuable short-term support for the management of population declines, helping to focus future data collection on those ultimate causal mechanisms that are not excluded by the demographic evidence. The contribution of specific ultimate drivers (e.g. shooting mortality or competitors) can also be quantified by including them as covariates to survival or fecundity.

  18. Active backstop faults in the Mentawai region of Sumatra, Indonesia, revealed by teleseismic broadband waveform modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xin; Bradley, Kyle Edward; Wei, Shengji; Wu, Wenbo

    2018-02-01

    Two earthquake sequences that affected the Mentawai islands offshore of central Sumatra in 2005 (Mw 6.9) and 2009 (Mw 6.7) have been highlighted as evidence for active backthrusting of the Sumatran accretionary wedge. However, the geometry of the activated fault planes is not well resolved due to large uncertainties in the locations of the mainshocks and aftershocks. We refine the locations and focal mechanisms of medium size events (Mw > 4.5) of these two earthquake sequences through broadband waveform modeling. In addition to modeling the depth-phases for accurate centroid depths, we use teleseismic surface wave cross-correlation to precisely relocate the relative horizontal locations of the earthquakes. The refined catalog shows that the 2005 and 2009 "backthrust" sequences in Mentawai region actually occurred on steeply (∼60 degrees) landward-dipping faults (Masilo Fault Zone) that intersect the Sunda megathrust beneath the deepest part of the forearc basin, contradicting previous studies that inferred slip on a shallowly seaward-dipping backthrust. Static slip inversion on the newly-proposed fault fits the coseismic GPS offsets for the 2009 mainshock equally well as previous studies, but with a slip distribution more consistent with the mainshock centroid depth (∼20 km) constrained from teleseismic waveform inversion. Rupture of such steeply dipping reverse faults within the forearc crust is rare along the Sumatra-Java margin. We interpret these earthquakes as 'unsticking' of the Sumatran accretionary wedge along a backstop fault separating imbricated material from the stronger Sunda lithosphere. Alternatively, the reverse faults may have originated as pre-Miocene normal faults of the extended continental crust of the western Sunda margin. Our waveform modeling approach can be used to further refine global earthquake catalogs in order to clarify the geometries of active faults.

  19. How causal analysis can reveal autonomy in models of biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, William; Kim, Hyunju; Walker, Sara I.; Tononi, Giulio; Albantakis, Larissa

    2017-11-01

    Standard techniques for studying biological systems largely focus on their dynamical or, more recently, their informational properties, usually taking either a reductionist or holistic perspective. Yet, studying only individual system elements or the dynamics of the system as a whole disregards the organizational structure of the system-whether there are subsets of elements with joint causes or effects, and whether the system is strongly integrated or composed of several loosely interacting components. Integrated information theory offers a theoretical framework to (1) investigate the compositional cause-effect structure of a system and to (2) identify causal borders of highly integrated elements comprising local maxima of intrinsic cause-effect power. Here we apply this comprehensive causal analysis to a Boolean network model of the fission yeast (Schizosaccharomyces pombe) cell cycle. We demonstrate that this biological model features a non-trivial causal architecture, whose discovery may provide insights about the real cell cycle that could not be gained from holistic or reductionist approaches. We also show how some specific properties of this underlying causal architecture relate to the biological notion of autonomy. Ultimately, we suggest that analysing the causal organization of a system, including key features like intrinsic control and stable causal borders, should prove relevant for distinguishing life from non-life, and thus could also illuminate the origin of life problem. This article is part of the themed issue 'Reconceptualizing the origins of life'.

  20. Structure of naturally hydrated ferrihydrite revealed through neutron diffraction and first-principles modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chappell, Helen F.; Thom, William; Bowron, Daniel T.; Faria, Nuno; Hasnip, Philip J.; Powell, Jonathan J.

    2017-08-01

    Ferrihydrite, with a ``two-line'' x-ray diffraction pattern (2L-Fh), is the most amorphous of the iron oxides and is ubiquitous in both terrestrial and aquatic environments. It also plays a central role in the regulation and metabolism of iron in bacteria, algae, higher plants, and animals, including humans. In this study, we present a single-phase model for ferrihydrite that unifies existing analytical data while adhering to fundamental chemical principles. The primary particle is small (20-50 Å) and has a dynamic and variably hydrated surface, which negates long-range order; collectively, these features have hampered complete characterization and frustrated our understanding of the mineral's reactivity and chemical/biochemical function. Near and intermediate range neutron diffraction (NIMROD) and first-principles density functional theory (DFT) were employed in this study to generate and interpret high-resolution data of naturally hydrated, synthetic 2L-Fh at standard temperature. The structural optimization overcomes transgressions of coordination chemistry inherent within previously proposed structures, to produce a robust and unambiguous single-phase model.

  1. Integrative proteomic analysis of the NMDA NR1 knockdown mouse model reveals effects on central and peripheral pathways associated with schizophrenia and autism spectrum disorders

    OpenAIRE

    Wesseling, Hendrik; Guest, Paul; Lee, Chi-Ming; Wong, Erik; Rahmoune, Hassan; Bahn, Sabine

    2014-01-01

    textabstractBackground: Over the last decade, the transgenic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) NR1-knockdown mouse (NR1neo-/-) has been investigated as a glutamate hypofunction model for schizophrenia. Recent research has now revealed that the model also recapitulates cognitive and negative symptoms in the continuum of other psychiatric diseases, particularly autism spectrum disorders (ASD). As previous studies have mostly focussed on behavioural readouts, a molecular characterisation of ...

  2. Ex-vivo diffusion MRI reveals microstructural alterations in stress-sensitive brain regions: A chronic mild stress recovery study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Khan, Ahmad Raza; Hansen, Brian; Wiborg, Ove

    Depression is a leading cause of disability worldwide and causes significant microstructural alterations in stress-sensitive brain regions. However, the potential recovery of these microstructural alterations has not previously been investigated, which we, therefore, set out to do using diffusion...... MRI (d-MRI) in the chronic mild stress (CMS) rat model of depression. This study reveals significant microstructural alterations after 8 weeks of recovery, in the opposite direction to change induced by stress in the acute phase of the experiment. Such findings may be useful in the prognosis...... of depression or for monitoring treatment response....

  3. Monitoring studies should consider temporal variability to reveal relations between cyanobacterial abundance and environmental variables

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JULIANA WOJCIECHOWSKI

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available One of the main goals of monitoring cyanobacteria blooms in aquatic environments is to reveal the relationship between cyanobacterial abundance and environmental variables. Studies typically correlate data that were simultaneously sampled. However, samplings occur sparsely over time and may not reveal the short-term responses of cyanobacterial abundance to environmental changes. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that stronger cyanobacteria x environment relationships in monitoring are found when the temporal variability of sampling points is incorporated in the statistical analyses. To this end, we investigated relationships between cyanobacteria and seven environmental variables that were sampled twice yearly for three years across 11 reservoirs, and data from an intensive monitoring in one of these reservoirs. Poor correlations were obtained when correlating data simultaneously sampled. In fact, the 'highly recurrent' role of phosphorus in cyanobacteria blooms is not properly observed in all sampling periods. On the other hand, the strongest correlation values for the total phosphorus x cyanobacteria relationship were observed when we used the variation of sampling points. We have also shown that environment variables better explain cyanobacteria when a time lag is considered. We conclude that, in cyanobacteria monitoring, the best approach to reveal determinants of cyanobacteria blooms is to consider environmental variability.

  4. A zebrafish larval model reveals early tissue-specific innate immune responses to Mucor circinelloides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voelz, Kerstin; Gratacap, Remi L; Wheeler, Robert T

    2015-11-01

    -animal model system will contribute greatly to the study of molecular mechanisms involved in the interaction of the host innate immune system with fungal spores during mucormycosis. © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  5. N-gram analysis of 970 microbial organisms reveals presence of biological language models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ganapathiraju Madhavi K

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background It has been suggested previously that genome and proteome sequences show characteristics typical of natural-language texts such as "signature-style" word usage indicative of authors or topics, and that the algorithms originally developed for natural language processing may therefore be applied to genome sequences to draw biologically relevant conclusions. Following this approach of 'biological language modeling', statistical n-gram analysis has been applied for comparative analysis of whole proteome sequences of 44 organisms. It has been shown that a few particular amino acid n-grams are found in abundance in one organism but occurring very rarely in other organisms, thereby serving as genome signatures. At that time proteomes of only 44 organisms were available, thereby limiting the generalization of this hypothesis. Today nearly 1,000 genome sequences and corresponding translated sequences are available, making it feasible to test the existence of biological language models over the evolutionary tree. Results We studied whole proteome sequences of 970 microbial organisms using n-gram frequencies and cross-perplexity employing the Biological Language Modeling Toolkit and Patternix Revelio toolkit. Genus-specific signatures were observed even in a simple unigram distribution. By taking statistical n-gram model of one organism as reference and computing cross-perplexity of all other microbial proteomes with it, cross-perplexity was found to be predictive of branch distance of the phylogenetic tree. For example, a 4-gram model from proteome of Shigellae flexneri 2a, which belongs to the Gammaproteobacteria class showed a self-perplexity of 15.34 while the cross-perplexity of other organisms was in the range of 15.59 to 29.5 and was proportional to their branching distance in the evolutionary tree from S. flexneri. The organisms of this genus, which happen to be pathotypes of E.coli, also have the closest perplexity values with

  6. Comparative study of the human ficolins reveals unique features of Ficolin-3 (Hakata antigen)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hummelshoj, Tina; Fog, Lea Munthe; Madsen, Hans O

    2007-01-01

    The ficolins and mannose-binding lectin (MBL) are collagen-like defence proteins that serve as recognition molecules in lectin complement pathway. Differential features that may indicate diverse functions of these proteins are poorly understood. In this study we compared important biological...... features of the ficolins and MBL. We investigated the tissue distribution of the FCN1-3 and the MBL2 genes encoding the ficolins and MBL by quantitative PCR. Recombinant proteins were produced and structural and biological characteristics were investigated and compared. Our main findings were that FCN3 m......RNA was highly expressed in the liver and lung compared with the other genes revealing the lung as the tissue with the highest FCN3 expression pattern. Ficolin-3 revealed higher complement activating capacity compared with Ficolin-2, MBL and Ficolin-1 and was highly resistant to bacterial collagenase treatment...

  7. A unifying mathematical model of lipid droplet metabolism reveals key molecular players in the development of hepatic steatosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallstab, Christin; Eleftheriadou, Dimitra; Schulz, Theresa; Damm, Georg; Seehofer, Daniel; Borlak, Jürgen; Holzhütter, Hermann-Georg; Berndt, Nikolaus

    2017-10-01

    The liver responds to elevated plasma concentrations of free fatty acids (FFAs) with an enhanced uptake of FFAs and their esterification to triacylglycerol (TAG). On the long term, this may result in massive hepatic TAG accumulation called steatosis hepatitis. In hepatocytes, the poor water-soluble TAG is packed in specialized organelles: Lipid droplets (LDs) serving as transient cellular deposit and lipoproteins (LPs) transporting TAG and cholesterol esters to extra-hepatic tissues. The dynamics of these organelles is controlled by a variety of regulatory surface proteins (RSPs). Assembly and export of VLDLs are mainly regulated by the microsomal transfer protein (MTP) and apoprotein B100. Formation and lipolysis of LDs are regulated by several RSPs. The best studied regulators belong to the PAT (Perilipin/Adipophilin/TIP47) and CIDE families. Knockdown or overexpression of SRPs may significantly affect the total number and size distribution of LDs. Intriguingly, a large cell-to-cell heterogeneity with respect to the number and size of LDs has been found in various cell types including hepatocytes. These findings suggest that the extent of cellular lipid accumulation is determined not only by the imbalance between lipid supply and utilization but also by variations in the expression of RSPs and metabolic enzymes. To better understand the relative regulatory impact of individual processes involved in the cellular TAG turnover, we developed a comprehensive kinetic model encompassing the pathways of the fatty acid and triglyceride metabolism and the main molecular processes governing the dynamics of LDs. The model was parametrized such that a large number of experimental in vitro and in vivo findings are correctly recapitulated. A control analysis of the model revealed that variations in the activity of FFA uptake, diacylglycerol acyltransferase (DGAT) 2, and adipose triglyceride lipase (ATGL) have the strongest influence on the cellular TAG level. We used the model

  8. Integrating Kinetic Model of E. coli with Genome Scale Metabolic Fluxes Overcomes Its Open System Problem and Reveals Bistability in Central Metabolism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmad A Mannan

    Full Text Available An understanding of the dynamics of the metabolic profile of a bacterial cell is sought from a dynamical systems analysis of kinetic models. This modelling formalism relies on a deterministic mathematical description of enzyme kinetics and their metabolite regulation. However, it is severely impeded by the lack of available kinetic information, limiting the size of the system that can be modelled. Furthermore, the subsystem of the metabolic network whose dynamics can be modelled is faced with three problems: how to parameterize the model with mostly incomplete steady state data, how to close what is now an inherently open system, and how to account for the impact on growth. In this study we address these challenges of kinetic modelling by capitalizing on multi-'omics' steady state data and a genome-scale metabolic network model. We use these to generate parameters that integrate knowledge embedded in the genome-scale metabolic network model, into the most comprehensive kinetic model of the central carbon metabolism of E. coli realized to date. As an application, we performed a dynamical systems analysis of the resulting enriched model. This revealed bistability of the central carbon metabolism and thus its potential to express two distinct metabolic states. Furthermore, since our model-informing technique ensures both stable states are constrained by the same thermodynamically feasible steady state growth rate, the ensuing bistability represents a temporal coexistence of the two states, and by extension, reveals the emergence of a phenotypically heterogeneous population.

  9. Integrating Kinetic Model of E. coli with Genome Scale Metabolic Fluxes Overcomes Its Open System Problem and Reveals Bistability in Central Metabolism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mannan, Ahmad A.; Toya, Yoshihiro; Shimizu, Kazuyuki; McFadden, Johnjoe; Kierzek, Andrzej M.; Rocco, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    An understanding of the dynamics of the metabolic profile of a bacterial cell is sought from a dynamical systems analysis of kinetic models. This modelling formalism relies on a deterministic mathematical description of enzyme kinetics and their metabolite regulation. However, it is severely impeded by the lack of available kinetic information, limiting the size of the system that can be modelled. Furthermore, the subsystem of the metabolic network whose dynamics can be modelled is faced with three problems: how to parameterize the model with mostly incomplete steady state data, how to close what is now an inherently open system, and how to account for the impact on growth. In this study we address these challenges of kinetic modelling by capitalizing on multi-‘omics’ steady state data and a genome-scale metabolic network model. We use these to generate parameters that integrate knowledge embedded in the genome-scale metabolic network model, into the most comprehensive kinetic model of the central carbon metabolism of E. coli realized to date. As an application, we performed a dynamical systems analysis of the resulting enriched model. This revealed bistability of the central carbon metabolism and thus its potential to express two distinct metabolic states. Furthermore, since our model-informing technique ensures both stable states are constrained by the same thermodynamically feasible steady state growth rate, the ensuing bistability represents a temporal coexistence of the two states, and by extension, reveals the emergence of a phenotypically heterogeneous population. PMID:26469081

  10. Using simulations and kinetic network models to reveal the dynamics and functions of riboswitches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Jong-Chin; Yoon, Jeseong; Hyeon, Changbong; Thirumalai, D

    2015-01-01

    Riboswitches, RNA elements found in the untranslated region, regulate gene expression by binding to target metaboloites with exquisite specificity. Binding of metabolites to the conserved aptamer domain allosterically alters the conformation in the downstream expression platform. The fate of gene expression is determined by the changes in the downstream RNA sequence. As the metabolite-dependent cotranscriptional folding and unfolding dynamics of riboswitches are the key determinant of gene expression, it is important to investigate both the thermodynamics and kinetics of riboswitches both in the presence and absence of metabolite. Single molecule force experiments that decipher the free energy landscape of riboswitches from their mechanical responses, theoretical and computational studies have recently shed light on the distinct mechanism of folding dynamics in different classes of riboswitches. Here, we first discuss the dynamics of water around riboswitch, highlighting that water dynamics can enhance the fluctuation of nucleic acid structure. To go beyond native state fluctuations, we used the Self-Organized Polymer model to predict the dynamics of add adenine riboswitch under mechanical forces. In addition to quantitatively predicting the folding landscape of add-riboswitch, our simulations also explain the difference in the dynamics between pbuE adenine- and add adenine-riboswitches. In order to probe the function in vivo, we use the folding landscape to propose a system level kinetic network model to quantitatively predict how gene expression is regulated for riboswitches that are under kinetic control. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Mammary-Stem-Cell-Based Somatic Mouse Models Reveal Breast Cancer Drivers Causing Cell Fate Dysregulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zheng Zhang

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Cancer genomics has provided an unprecedented opportunity for understanding genetic causes of human cancer. However, distinguishing which mutations are functionally relevant to cancer pathogenesis remains a major challenge. We describe here a mammary stem cell (MaSC organoid-based approach for rapid generation of somatic genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs. By using RNAi and CRISPR-mediated genome engineering in MaSC-GEMMs, we have discovered that inactivation of Ptpn22 or Mll3, two genes mutated in human breast cancer, greatly accelerated PI3K-driven mammary tumorigenesis. Using these tumor models, we have also identified genetic alterations promoting tumor metastasis and causing resistance to PI3K-targeted therapy. Both Ptpn22 and Mll3 inactivation resulted in disruption of mammary gland differentiation and an increase in stem cell activity. Mechanistically, Mll3 deletion enhanced stem cell activity through activation of the HIF pathway. Thus, our study has established a robust in vivo platform for functional cancer genomics and has discovered functional breast cancer mutations.

  12. Dissociable perceptual-learning mechanisms revealed by diffusion-model analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrov, Alexander A; Van Horn, Nicholas M; Ratcliff, Roger

    2011-06-01

    Performance on perceptual tasks improves with practice. Most theories address only accuracy data and tacitly assume that perceptual learning is a monolithic phenomenon. The present study pioneers the use of response time distributions in perceptual learning research. The 27 observers practiced a visual motion-direction discrimination task with filtered-noise textures for four sessions with feedback. Session 5 tested whether the learning effects transferred to the orthogonal direction. The diffusion model (Ratcliff, Psychological Review, 85, 59-108, 1978) achieved good fits to the individual response time distributions from each session and identified two distinct learning mechanisms with markedly different specificities. A stimulus-specific increase in the drift-rate parameter indicated improved sensory input to the decision process, and a stimulus-general decrease in nondecision time variability suggested improved timing of the decision process onset relative to stimulus onset (which was preceded by a beep). A traditional d' analysis would miss the latter effect, but the diffusion-model analysis identified it in the response time data.

  13. Application of the steepest slope model reveals different perfusion territories within the mouse placenta.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remus, C C; Sedlacik, J; Wedegaertner, U; Arck, P; Hecher, K; Adam, G; Forkert, N D

    2013-10-01

    The steepest slope model is a numerically robust and fast method for perfusion quantification. The purpose of this study was to evaluate if the steepest slope model can be used for quantifying placental perfusion in mice based on dynamic contrast-enhanced (DCE) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) datasets. T1-weighted DCE MRI was performed in 5 pregnant BALB/c mice on gestation day (gd) 14.5 and in 5 mice on gd 16.5 using a 7T small animal MRI scanner. The placentas were manually delineated in the DCE datasets and the arterial input function (AIF) was selected from the kidney hilus. Placental perfusion was determined on a voxel-by-voxel basis using the steepest slope model. Perfusion was averaged over the entire placenta as well as separately calculated for the high-flow compartment within the central labyrinth zone and for the remaining low-flow placenta tissue. The AIF selection was independently performed by two observers for assessment of inter-observer differences. Mean perfusion on gd 14.5 was 135 ml/min/100 ml (standard deviation SD: 29 ml/min/100 ml placenta) and 112 ml/min/100 ml on gd 16.5 for the whole placenta (SD: 32 ml/min/100 ml). Perfusion in the high flow compartment in the central labyrinth was significantly higher (p ≤ 0.002) than in the low-flow compartment including the remaining placenta tissue: 184 ml/min/100 ml (SD: 39 ml/min/100 ml) vs. 119 ml/min/100 ml (SD 28 ml/min/100 ml) on gd 14.5 and 158 ml/min/100 ml (SD: 58 ml/min/100 ml) vs. 114 ml/min/100 ml (SD: 52 ml/min/100 ml of placenta) on gd 16.5. The mean relative inter-rater observer difference was 6%. The steepest slope model is a computationally simple method, which allows perfusion quantification in the mouse placenta. Furthermore, the results of this work indicate that the different placental compartments should be analyzed separately to prevent biased results due to averaging. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Imitation Modeling and Institutional Studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maksim Y. Barbashin

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available This article discusses the use of imitation modeling in the conduct of institutional research. The institutional approach is based on the observation of social behavior. To understand a social process means to determine the key rules that individuals use, undertaking social actions associated with this process or phenomenon. This does not mean that institutions determine behavioral reactions, although there are a number of social situations where the majority of individuals follow the dominant rules. If the main laws of development of the institutional patterns are known, one can describe most of the social processes accurately. The author believes that the main difficulty with the analysis of institutional processes is their recursive nature: from the standards of behavior one may find the proposed actions of social agents who follow, obey or violate institutions, but the possibility of reconstructive analysis is not obvious. The author demonstrates how the institutional approach is applied to the analysis of social behavior. The article describes the basic principles and methodology of imitation modeling. Imitation modeling reveals the importance of institutions in structuring social transactions. The article concludes that in the long term institutional processes are not determined by initial conditions.

  15. Automatic sleep classification using a data-driven topic model reveals latent sleep states

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Koch, Henriette; Christensen, Julie Anja Engelhard; Frandsen, Rune

    2014-01-01

    Background: The golden standard for sleep classification uses manual scoring of polysomnography despite points of criticism such as oversimplification, low inter-rater reliability and the standard being designed on young and healthy subjects. New method: To meet the criticism and reveal the laten...

  16. Insights into antiviral innate immunity revealed by studying hepatitis C virus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horner, Stacy M

    2015-08-01

    Experimental studies on the interactions of the positive strand RNA virus hepatitis C virus (HCV) with the host have contributed to several discoveries in the field of antiviral innate immunity. These include revealing the antiviral sensing pathways that lead to the induction of type I interferon (IFN) during HCV infection and also the importance of type III IFNs in the antiviral immune response to HCV. These studies on HCV/host interactions have contributed to our overall understanding of viral sensing and viral evasion of the antiviral intracellular innate immune response. In this review, I will highlight how these studies of HCV/host interactions have led to new insights into antiviral innate immunity. Overall, I hope to emphasize that studying antiviral immunity in the context of virus infection is necessary to fully understand antiviral immunity and how it controls the outcome of viral infection. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Modeling chronic myeloid leukemia in immunodeficient mice reveals expansion of aberrant mast cells and accumulation of pre-B cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Askmyr, M; Ågerstam, H; Lilljebjörn, H; Hansen, N; Karlsson, C; Palffy, S von; Landberg, N; Högberg, C; Lassen, C; Rissler, M; Richter, J; Ehinger, M; Järås, M; Fioretos, T

    2014-01-01

    Chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is a myeloproliferative neoplasm that, if not treated, will progress into blast crisis (BC) of either myeloid or B lymphoid phenotype. The BCR-ABL1 fusion gene, encoding a constitutively active tyrosine kinase, is thought to be sufficient to cause chronic phase (CP) CML, whereas additional genetic lesions are needed for progression into CML BC. To generate a humanized CML model, we retrovirally expressed BCR-ABL1 in the cord blood CD34 + cells and transplanted these into NOD-SCID (non-obese diabetic/severe-combined immunodeficient) interleukin-2-receptor γ-deficient mice. In primary mice, BCR-ABL1 expression induced an inflammatory-like state in the bone marrow and spleen, and mast cells were the only myeloid lineage specifically expanded by BCR-ABL1. Upon secondary transplantation, the pronounced inflammatory phenotype was lost and mainly human mast cells and macrophages were found in the bone marrow. Moreover, a striking block at the pre-B-cell stage was observed in primary mice, resulting in an accumulation of pre-B cells. A similar block in B-cell differentiation could be confirmed in primary cells from CML patients. Hence, this humanized mouse model of CML reveals previously unexplored features of CP CML and should be useful for further studies to understand the disease pathogenesis of CML

  18. A spastic paraplegia mouse model reveals REEP1-dependent ER shaping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beetz, Christian; Koch, Nicole; Khundadze, Mukhran; Zimmer, Geraldine; Nietzsche, Sandor; Hertel, Nicole; Huebner, Antje-Kathrin; Mumtaz, Rizwan; Schweizer, Michaela; Dirren, Elisabeth; Karle, Kathrin N; Irintchev, Andrey; Alvarez, Victoria; Redies, Christoph; Westermann, Martin; Kurth, Ingo; Deufel, Thomas; Kessels, Michael M; Qualmann, Britta; Hübner, Christian A

    2013-10-01

    Axonopathies are a group of clinically diverse disorders characterized by the progressive degeneration of the axons of specific neurons. In hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP), the axons of cortical motor neurons degenerate and cause a spastic movement disorder. HSP is linked to mutations in several loci known collectively as the spastic paraplegia genes (SPGs). We identified a heterozygous receptor accessory protein 1 (REEP1) exon 2 deletion in a patient suffering from the autosomal dominantly inherited HSP variant SPG31. We generated the corresponding mouse model to study the underlying cellular pathology. Mice with heterozygous deletion of exon 2 in Reep1 displayed a gait disorder closely resembling SPG31 in humans. Homozygous exon 2 deletion resulted in the complete loss of REEP1 and a more severe phenotype with earlier onset. At the molecular level, we demonstrated that REEP1 is a neuron-specific, membrane-binding, and membrane curvature-inducing protein that resides in the ER. We further show that Reep1 expression was prominent in cortical motor neurons. In REEP1-deficient mice, these neurons showed reduced complexity of the peripheral ER upon ultrastructural analysis. Our study connects proper neuronal ER architecture to long-term axon survival.

  19. Multi-Analytical Approach Reveals Potential Microbial Indicators in Soil for Sugarcane Model Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarrete, Acacio Aparecido; Diniz, Tatiana Rosa; Braga, Lucas Palma Perez; Silva, Genivaldo Gueiros Zacarias; Franchini, Julio Cezar; Rossetto, Raffaella; Edwards, Robert Alan; Tsai, Siu Mui

    2015-01-01

    This study focused on the effects of organic and inorganic amendments and straw retention on the microbial biomass (MB) and taxonomic groups of bacteria in sugarcane-cultivated soils in a greenhouse mesocosm experiment monitored for gas emissions and chemical factors. The experiment consisted of combinations of synthetic nitrogen (N), vinasse (V; a liquid waste from ethanol production), and sugarcane-straw blankets. Increases in CO2-C and N2O-N emissions were identified shortly after the addition of both N and V to the soils, thus increasing MB nitrogen (MB-N) and decreasing MB carbon (MB-C) in the N+V-amended soils and altering soil chemical factors that were correlated with the MB. Across 57 soil metagenomic datasets, Actinobacteria (31.5%), Planctomycetes (12.3%), Deltaproteobacteria (12.3%), Alphaproteobacteria (12.0%) and Betaproteobacteria (11.1%) were the most dominant bacterial groups during the experiment. Differences in relative abundance of metagenomic sequences were mainly revealed for Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria and Verrucomicrobia with regard to N+V fertilization and straw retention. Differential abundances in bacterial groups were confirmed using 16S rRNA gene-targeted phylum-specific primers for real-time PCR analysis in all soil samples, whose results were in accordance with sequence data, except for Gammaproteobacteria. Actinobacteria were more responsive to straw retention with Rubrobacterales, Bifidobacteriales and Actinomycetales related to the chemical factors of N+V-amended soils. Acidobacteria subgroup 7 and Opitutae, a verrucomicrobial class, were related to the chemical factors of soils without straw retention as a surface blanket. Taken together, the results showed that MB-C and MB-N responded to changes in soil chemical factors and CO2-C and N2O-N emissions, especially for N+V-amended soils. The results also indicated that several taxonomic groups of bacteria, such as Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria and

  20. Infections Revealing Complement Deficiency in Adults: A French Nationwide Study Enrolling 41 Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Audemard-Verger, A; Descloux, E; Ponard, D; Deroux, A; Fantin, B; Fieschi, C; John, M; Bouldouyre, A; Karkowsi, L; Moulis, G; Auvinet, H; Valla, F; Lechiche, C; Davido, B; Martinot, M; Biron, C; Lucht, F; Asseray, N; Froissart, A; Buzelé, R; Perlat, A; Boutboul, D; Fremeaux-Bacchi, V; Isnard, S; Bienvenu, B

    2016-05-01

    Complement system is a part of innate immunity, its main function is to protect human from bacterial infection. As genetic disorders, complement deficiencies are often diagnosed in pediatric population. However, complement deficiencies can also be revealed in adults but have been poorly investigated. Herein, we describe a case series of infections revealing complement deficiency in adults to study clinical spectrum and management of complement deficiencies.A nationwide retrospective study was conducted in French university and general hospitals in departments of internal medicine, infectious diseases enrolling patients older than 15 years old who had presented at least one infection leading to a complement deficiency diagnosis.Forty-one patients included between 2002 and 2015 in 19 different departments were enrolled in this study. The male-to-female ratio was 1.3 and the mean age at diagnosis was 28 ± 14 (15-67) years. The main clinical feature was Neisseria meningitidis meningitis 75% (n = 31/41) often involving rare serotype: Y (n = 9) and W 135 (n = 7). The main complement deficiency observed was the common final pathway deficiency 83% (n = 34/41). Half of the cohort displayed severe sepsis or septic shock at diagnosis (n = 22/41) but no patient died. No patient had family history of complement deficiency. The mean follow-up was 1.15 ± 1.95 (0.1-10) years. Half of the patients had already suffered from at least one infection before diagnosis of complement deficiency: meningitis (n = 13), pneumonia (n = 4), fulminans purpura (n = 1), or recurrent otitis (n = 1). Near one-third (n = 10/39) had received prophylactic antibiotics (cotrimoxazole or penicillin) after diagnosis of complement deficiency. The vaccination coverage rate, at the end of the follow-up, for N meningitidis, Streptococcus pneumonia, and Haemophilius influenzae were, respectively, 90% (n = 33/37), 47% (n = 17/36), and 35% (n = 14

  1. Genetic models reveal historical patterns of sea lamprey population fluctuations within Lake Champlain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cassidy C. D’Aloia

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The origin of sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus in Lake Champlain has been heavily debated over the past decade. Given the lack of historical documentation, two competing hypotheses have emerged in the literature. First, it has been argued that the relatively recent population size increase and concomitant rise in wounding rates on prey populations are indicative of an invasive population that entered the lake through the Champlain Canal. Second, recent genetic evidence suggests a post-glacial colonization at the end of the Pleistocene, approximately 11,000 years ago. One limitation to resolving the origin of sea lamprey in Lake Champlain is a lack of historical and current measures of population size. In this study, the issue of population size was explicitly addressed using nuclear (nDNA and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA markers to estimate historical demography with genetic models. Haplotype network analysis, mismatch analysis, and summary statistics based on mtDNA noncoding sequences for NCI (479 bp and NCII (173 bp all indicate a recent population expansion. Coalescent models based on mtDNA and nDNA identified two potential demographic events: a population decline followed by a very recent population expansion. The decline in effective population size may correlate with land-use and fishing pressure changes post-European settlement, while the recent expansion may be associated with the implementation of the salmonid stocking program in the 1970s. These results are most consistent with the hypothesis that sea lamprey are native to Lake Champlain; however, the credibility intervals around parameter estimates demonstrate that there is uncertainty regarding the magnitude and timing of past demographic events.

  2. Computational modeling of the hematopoietic erythroid-myeloid switch reveals insights into cooperativity, priming, and irreversibility.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vijay Chickarmane

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Hematopoietic stem cell lineage choices are decided by genetic networks that are turned ON/OFF in a switch-like manner. However, prior to lineage commitment, genes are primed at low expression levels. Understanding the underlying molecular circuitry in terms of how it governs both a primed state and, at the other extreme, a committed state is of relevance not only to hematopoiesis but also to developmental systems in general. We develop a computational model for the hematopoietic erythroid-myeloid lineage decision, which is determined by a genetic switch involving the genes PU.1 and GATA-1. Dynamical models based upon known interactions between these master genes, such as mutual antagonism and autoregulation, fail to make the system bistable, a desired feature for robust lineage determination. We therefore suggest a new mechanism involving a cofactor that is regulated as well as recruited by one of the master genes to bind to the antagonistic partner that is necessary for bistability and hence switch-like behavior. An interesting fallout from this architecture is that suppression of the cofactor through external means can lead to a loss of cooperativity, and hence to a primed state for PU.1 and GATA-1. The PU.1-GATA-1 switch also interacts with another mutually antagonistic pair, C/EBPalpha-FOG-1. The latter pair inherits the state of its upstream master genes and further reinforces the decision due to several feedback loops, thereby leading to irreversible commitment. The genetic switch, which handles the erythroid-myeloid lineage decision, is an example of a network that implements both a primed and a committed state by regulating cooperativity through recruitment of cofactors. Perturbing the feedback between the master regulators and downstream targets suggests potential reprogramming strategies. The approach points to a framework for lineage commitment studies in general and could aid the search for lineage-determining genes.

  3. A mathematical model of mechanotransduction reveals how mechanical memory regulates mesenchymal stem cell fate decisions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Tao; Liu, Linan; MacLean, Adam L; Wong, Chi Wut; Zhao, Weian; Nie, Qing

    2017-05-16

    Mechanical and biophysical properties of the cellular microenvironment regulate cell fate decisions. Mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) fate is influenced by past mechanical dosing (memory), but the mechanisms underlying this process have not yet been well defined. We have yet to understand how memory affects specific cell fate decisions, such as the differentiation of MSCs into neurons, adipocytes, myocytes, and osteoblasts. We study a minimal gene regulatory network permissive of multi-lineage MSC differentiation into four cell fates. We present a continuous model that is able to describe the cell fate transitions that occur during differentiation, and analyze its dynamics with tools from multistability, bifurcation, and cell fate landscape analysis, and via stochastic simulation. Whereas experimentally, memory has only been observed during osteogenic differentiation, this model predicts that memory regions can exist for each of the four MSC-derived cell lineages. We can predict the substrate stiffness ranges over which memory drives differentiation; these are directly testable in an experimental setting. Furthermore, we quantitatively predict how substrate stiffness and culture duration co-regulate the fate of a stem cell, and we find that the feedbacks from the differentiating MSC onto its substrate are critical to preserve mechanical memory. Strikingly, we show that re-seeding MSCs onto a sufficiently soft substrate increases the number of cell fates accessible. Control of MSC differentiation is crucial for the success of much-lauded regenerative therapies based on MSCs. We have predicted new memory regions that will directly impact this control, and have quantified the size of the memory region for osteoblasts, as well as the co-regulatory effects on cell fates of substrate stiffness and culture duration. Taken together, these results can be used to develop novel strategies to better control the fates of MSCs in vitro and following transplantation.

  4. MicroRNA Profiling Reveals Marker of Motor Neuron Disease in ALS Models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoye, Mariah L; Koval, Erica D; Wegener, Amy J; Hyman, Theodore S; Yang, Chengran; O'Brien, David R; Miller, Rebecca L; Cole, Tracy; Schoch, Kathleen M; Shen, Tao; Kunikata, Tomonori; Richard, Jean-Philippe; Gutmann, David H; Maragakis, Nicholas J; Kordasiewicz, Holly B; Dougherty, Joseph D; Miller, Timothy M

    2017-05-31

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder marked by the loss of motor neurons (MNs) in the brain and spinal cord, leading to fatally debilitating weakness. Because this disease predominantly affects MNs, we aimed to characterize the distinct expression profile of that cell type to elucidate underlying disease mechanisms and to identify novel targets that inform on MN health during ALS disease time course. microRNAs (miRNAs) are short, noncoding RNAs that can shape the expression profile of a cell and thus often exhibit cell-type-enriched expression. To determine MN-enriched miRNA expression, we used Cre recombinase-dependent miRNA tagging and affinity purification in mice. By defining the in vivo miRNA expression of MNs, all neurons, astrocytes, and microglia, we then focused on MN-enriched miRNAs via a comparative analysis and found that they may functionally distinguish MNs postnatally from other spinal neurons. Characterizing the levels of the MN-enriched miRNAs in CSF harvested from ALS models of MN disease demonstrated that one miRNA (miR-218) tracked with MN loss and was responsive to an ALS therapy in rodent models. Therefore, we have used cellular expression profiling tools to define the distinct miRNA expression of MNs, which is likely to enrich future studies of MN disease. This approach enabled the development of a novel, drug-responsive marker of MN disease in ALS rodents. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease in which motor neurons (MNs) in the brain and spinal cord are selectively lost. To develop tools to aid in our understanding of the distinct expression profiles of MNs and, ultimately, to monitor MN disease progression, we identified small regulatory microRNAs (miRNAs) that were highly enriched or exclusive in MNs. The signal for one of these MN-enriched miRNAs is detectable in spinal tap biofluid from an ALS rat model, where its levels change as disease

  5. Spatially Explicit Modeling Reveals Cephalopod Distributions Match Contrasting Trophic Pathways in the Western Mediterranean Sea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia Puerta

    Full Text Available Populations of the same species can experience different responses to the environment throughout their distributional range as a result of spatial and temporal heterogeneity in habitat conditions. This highlights the importance of understanding the processes governing species distribution at local scales. However, research on species distribution often averages environmental covariates across large geographic areas, missing variability in population-environment interactions within geographically distinct regions. We used spatially explicit models to identify interactions between species and environmental, including chlorophyll a (Chla and sea surface temperature (SST, and trophic (prey density conditions, along with processes governing the distribution of two cephalopods with contrasting life-histories (octopus and squid across the western Mediterranean Sea. This approach is relevant for cephalopods, since their population dynamics are especially sensitive to variations in habitat conditions and rarely stable in abundance and location. The regional distributions of the two cephalopod species matched two different trophic pathways present in the western Mediterranean Sea, associated with the Gulf of Lion upwelling and the Ebro river discharges respectively. The effects of the studied environmental and trophic conditions were spatially variant in both species, with usually stronger effects along their distributional boundaries. We identify areas where prey availability limited the abundance of cephalopod populations as well as contrasting effects of temperature in the warmest regions. Despite distributional patterns matching productive areas, a general negative effect of Chla on cephalopod densities suggests that competition pressure is common in the study area. Additionally, results highlight the importance of trophic interactions, beyond other common environmental factors, in shaping the distribution of cephalopod populations. Our study presents

  6. Sparse Modeling Reveals miRNA Signatures for Diagnostics of Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias Hübenthal

    Full Text Available The diagnosis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD still remains a clinical challenge and the most accurate diagnostic procedure is a combination of clinical tests including invasive endoscopy. In this study we evaluated whether systematic miRNA expression profiling, in conjunction with machine learning techniques, is suitable as a non-invasive test for the major IBD phenotypes (Crohn's disease (CD and ulcerative colitis (UC. Based on microarray technology, expression levels of 863 miRNAs were determined for whole blood samples from 40 CD and 36 UC patients and compared to data from 38 healthy controls (HC. To further discriminate between disease-specific and general inflammation we included miRNA expression data from other inflammatory diseases (inflammation controls (IC: 24 chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD, 23 multiple sclerosis, 38 pancreatitis and 45 sarcoidosis cases as well as 70 healthy controls from previous studies. Classification problems considering 2, 3 or 4 groups were solved using different types of penalized support vector machines (SVMs. The resulting models were assessed regarding sparsity and performance and a subset was selected for further investigation. Measured by the area under the ROC curve (AUC the corresponding median holdout-validated accuracy was estimated as ranging from 0.75 to 1.00 (including IC and 0.89 to 0.98 (excluding IC, respectively. In combination, the corresponding models provide tools for the distinction of CD and UC as well as CD, UC and HC with expected classification error rates of 3.1 and 3.3%, respectively. These results were obtained by incorporating not more than 16 distinct miRNAs. Validated target genes of these miRNAs have been previously described as being related to IBD. For others we observed significant enrichment for IBD susceptibility loci identified in earlier GWAS. These results suggest that the proposed miRNA signature is of relevance for the etiology of IBD. Its diagnostic

  7. Metabolomics study of cereal grains reveals the discriminative metabolic markers associated with anatomical compartments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A.A. Moazzami

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available This study used NMR-based metabolomics to compare the metabolic profile of different anatomical compartments of cereal grains i.e. bran and endosperm in order to gain further insightsinto their possible role in the beneficial health effects of whole grain products (WG. Polar watersoluble metabolites in 64 bran and endosperm, samples from rye and wheat were observed using600 MHz NMR. Bran samples had higher contents of 12 metabolites than endosperm samples. A comparative approach revealed higher contents of azelaic acid and sebacic acid in bran than in endosperm. In a pilot study, the consumption of WG rye bread (485 g caused NMR signals in 24h urine corresponding to azelaic acid. The relatively high abundance, anatomical specificity, patternof metabolism, urinary excretion in human, antibacterial, and anticancer activities suggest further studying of azelaic acid when exposure to WG or beneficial effects of WG are investigated.

  8. Comparison among different "revealers" in the study of accelerated blood clearance phenomenon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Kaifan; Wang, Lirong; Su, Yuqing; Liu, Mengyang; Feng, Rui; Song, Yanzhi; Deng, Yihui

    2018-03-01

    The markers are the "revealers" of accelerated blood clearance (ABC) phenomenon. PEGylated nanocarriers labeled with various markers have been used to explore the mechanism of ABC. However, different markers were labeled on different nanocarriers, and the influence of different markers on ABC phenomenon is questionable. In this study, tocopheryl nicotinate (TN), N-(7-nitrobenz-2-oxa-1,3-diazol-4-yl)-1,2-dihexadecanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine, triethylammonium salt (NBD-DPPE), and 1,1'-dioctadecyl-3,3,3',3'-tetra-methylindotricarbocyanine iodide (DiR) were selected as markers. ABC index (0-30min) was used as an evaluation indicator to reveal ABC phenomenon after repeated injections of PEGylated emulsions (PEs) in Wistar rats. No significant difference was observed in ABC index (0-30min) of PE labeled with the three markers (P>0.05), suggesting that the results of previous studies using these markers were comparable and interchangeable. Of the three markers, TN required tedious analytical method and showed proliferative effect on liver cells, while NBD-DPPE fluorescence was easily interfered by tissues and its phospholipid composition affected ABC analysis. On the contrary, DiR was deemed superior due to its near-infrared fluorescence, high-sensitivity, and convenient analytical detection. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Surface-based morphometry reveals the neuroanatomical basis of the five-factor model of personality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riccelli, Roberta; Toschi, Nicola; Nigro, Salvatore; Terracciano, Antonio; Passamonti, Luca

    2017-04-01

    The five-factor model (FFM) is a widely used taxonomy of human personality; yet its neuro anatomical basis remains unclear. This is partly because past associations between gray-matter volume and FFM were driven by different surface-based morphometry (SBM) indices (i.e. cortical thickness, surface area, cortical folding or any combination of them). To overcome this limitation, we used Free-Surfer to study how variability in SBM measures was related to the FFM in n = 507 participants from the Human Connectome Project.Neuroticism was associated with thicker cortex and smaller area and folding in prefrontal-temporal regions. Extraversion was linked to thicker pre-cuneus and smaller superior temporal cortex area. Openness was linked to thinner cortex and greater area and folding in prefrontal-parietal regions. Agreeableness was correlated to thinner prefrontal cortex and smaller fusiform gyrus area. Conscientiousness was associated with thicker cortex and smaller area and folding in prefrontal regions. These findings demonstrate that anatomical variability in prefrontal cortices is linked to individual differences in the socio-cognitive dispositions described by the FFM. Cortical thickness and surface area/folding were inversely related each others as a function of different FFM traits (neuroticism, extraversion and consciousness vs openness), which may reflect brain maturational effects that predispose or protect against psychiatric disorders. © The Author (2017). Published by Oxford University Press.

  10. Sector analysis and predictive modelling reveal iterative shoot-like development in fern fronds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanders, Heather L; Darrah, Peter R; Langdale, Jane A

    2011-07-01

    Plants colonized the terrestrial environment over 450 million years ago. Since then, shoot architecture has evolved in response to changing environmental conditions. Our current understanding of the innovations that altered shoot morphology is underpinned by developmental studies in a number of plant groups. However, the least is known about mechanisms that operate in ferns--a key group for understanding the evolution of plant development. Using a novel combination of sector analysis, conditional probability modelling methods and histology, we show that shoots, fronds ('leaves') and pinnae ('leaflets') of the fern Nephrolepis exaltata all develop from single apical initial cells. Shoot initials cleave on three faces to produce a pool of cells from which individual frond apical initials are sequentially specified. Frond initials then cleave in two planes to produce a series of lateral merophyte initials that each contributes a unit of three pinnae to half of the mediolateral frond axis. Notably, this iterative pattern in both shoots and fronds is similar to the developmental process that operates in shoots of other plant groups. Pinnae initials first cleave in two planes to generate lateral marginal initials. The apical and marginal initials then divide in three planes to coordinately generate the determinate pinna. These findings impact both on our understanding of fundamental plant developmental processes and on our perspective of how shoot systems evolved.

  11. New insight into motor adaptation to pain revealed by a combination of modelling and empirical approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodges, P W; Coppieters, M W; MacDonald, D; Cholewicki, J

    2013-09-01

    Movement changes in pain. Unlike the somewhat stereotypical response of limb muscles to pain, trunk muscle responses are highly variable when challenged by pain in that region. This has led many to question the existence of a common underlying theory to explain the adaptation. Here, we tested the hypotheses that (1) adaptation in muscle activation in acute pain leads to enhanced spine stability, despite variation in the pattern of muscle activation changes; and (2) individuals would use a similar 'signature' pattern for tasks with different mechanical demands. In 17 healthy individuals, electromyography recordings were made from a broad array of anterior and posterior trunk muscles while participants moved slowly between trunk flexion and extension with and without experimentally induced back pain. Hypotheses were tested by estimating spine stability (Stability Index) with an electromyography-driven spine model and analysis of individual and overall (net) adaptations in muscle activation. The Stability Index (P individuals used the same pattern of adaptation in muscle activity. For most, the adaptation was similar between movement directions despite opposite movement demands. These data provide the first empirical confirmation that, in most individuals, acute back pain leads to increased spinal stability and that the pattern of muscle activity is not stereotypical, but instead involves an individual-specific response to pain. This adaptation is likely to provide short-term benefit to enhance spinal protection, but could have long-term consequences for spinal health. © 2013 European Federation of International Association for the Study of Pain Chapters.

  12. The Intrinsic Dynamics and Unfolding Process of an Antibody Fab Fragment Revealed by Elastic Network Model

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    Ji-Guo Su

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Antibodies have been increasingly used as pharmaceuticals in clinical treatment. Thermal stability and unfolding process are important properties that must be considered in antibody design. In this paper, the structure-encoded dynamical properties and the unfolding process of the Fab fragment of the phosphocholine-binding antibody McPC603 are investigated by use of the normal mode analysis of Gaussian network model (GNM. Firstly, the temperature factors for the residues of the protein were calculated with GNM and then compared with the experimental measurements. A good result was obtained, which provides the validity for the use of GNM to study the dynamical properties of the protein. Then, with this approach, the mean-square fluctuation (MSF of the residues, as well as the MSF in the internal distance (MSFID between all pairwise residues, was calculated to investigate the mobility and flexibility of the protein, respectively. It is found that the mobility and flexibility of the constant regions are higher than those of the variable regions, and the six complementarity-determining regions (CDRs in the variable regions also exhibit relative large mobility and flexibility. The large amplitude motions of the CDRs are considered to be associated with the immune function of the antibody. In addition, the unfolding process of the protein was simulated by iterative use of the GNM. In our method, only the topology of protein native structure is taken into account, and the protein unfolding process is simulated through breaking the native contacts one by one according to the MSFID values between the residues. It is found that the flexible regions tend to unfold earlier. The sequence of the unfolding events obtained by our method is consistent with the hydrogen-deuterium exchange experimental results. Our studies imply that the unfolding behavior of the Fab fragment of antibody McPc603 is largely determined by the intrinsic dynamics of the protein.

  13. Different human gut models reveal the distinct fermentation patterns of arabinoxylan versus inulin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Abbeele, P. van den; Venema, K.; Wiele, T. van de; Verstraete, W.; Possemiers, S.

    2013-01-01

    Different in vitro models have been developed to assess how food compounds affect the human gut microbiota. Using two such models (SHIME(R) and TIM-2), we compared how long-chain arabinoxylan (LC-AX), a wheat-derived potentially prebiotic fiber, and inulin (IN), a well-established prebiotic

  14. Spatial models reveal the microclimatic buffering capacity of old-growth forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarah J. K. Frey; Adam S. Hadley; Sherri L. Johnson; Mark Schulze; Julia A. Jones; Matthew. G. Betts

    2016-01-01

    Climate change is predicted to cause widespread declines in biodiversity, but these predictions are derived from coarse-resolution climate models applied at global scales. Such models lack the capacity to incorporate microclimate variability, which is critical to biodiversity microrefugia. In forested montane regions, microclimate is thought to be influenced by...

  15. Integrative Analysis of Subcellular Quantitative Proteomics Studies Reveals Functional Cytoskeleton Membrane-Lipid Raft Interactions in Cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah, Anup D; Inder, Kerry L; Shah, Alok K; Cristino, Alexandre S; McKie, Arthur B; Gabra, Hani; Davis, Melissa J; Hill, Michelle M

    2016-10-07

    Lipid rafts are dynamic membrane microdomains that orchestrate molecular interactions and are implicated in cancer development. To understand the functions of lipid rafts in cancer, we performed an integrated analysis of quantitative lipid raft proteomics data sets modeling progression in breast cancer, melanoma, and renal cell carcinoma. This analysis revealed that cancer development is associated with increased membrane raft-cytoskeleton interactions, with ∼40% of elevated lipid raft proteins being cytoskeletal components. Previous studies suggest a potential functional role for the raft-cytoskeleton in the action of the putative tumor suppressors PTRF/Cavin-1 and Merlin. To extend the observation, we examined lipid raft proteome modulation by an unrelated tumor suppressor opioid binding protein cell-adhesion molecule (OPCML) in ovarian cancer SKOV3 cells. In agreement with the other model systems, quantitative proteomics revealed that 39% of OPCML-depleted lipid raft proteins are cytoskeletal components, with microfilaments and intermediate filaments specifically down-regulated. Furthermore, protein-protein interaction network and simulation analysis showed significantly higher interactions among cancer raft proteins compared with general human raft proteins. Collectively, these results suggest increased cytoskeleton-mediated stabilization of lipid raft domains with greater molecular interactions as a common, functional, and reversible feature of cancer cells.

  16. Computational modeling reveals optimal strategy for kinase transport by microtubules to nerve terminals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koon, Yen Ling; Koh, Cheng Gee; Chiam, Keng-Hwee

    2014-01-01

    Intracellular transport of proteins by motors along cytoskeletal filaments is crucial to the proper functioning of many eukaryotic cells. Since most proteins are synthesized at the cell body, mechanisms are required to deliver them to the growing periphery. In this article, we use computational modeling to study the strategies of protein transport in the context of JNK (c-JUN NH2-terminal kinase) transport along microtubules to the terminals of neuronal cells. One such strategy for protein transport is for the proteins of the JNK signaling cascade to bind to scaffolds, and to have the whole protein-scaffold cargo transported by kinesin motors along microtubules. We show how this strategy outperforms protein transport by diffusion alone, using metrics such as signaling rate and signal amplification. We find that there exists a range of scaffold concentrations for which JNK transport is optimal. Increase in scaffold concentration increases signaling rate and signal amplification but an excess of scaffolds results in the dilution of reactants. Similarly, there exists a range of kinesin motor speeds for which JNK transport is optimal. Signaling rate and signal amplification increases with kinesin motor speed until the speed of motor translocation becomes faster than kinase/scaffold-motor binding. Finally, we suggest experiments that can be performed to validate whether, in physiological conditions, neuronal cells do indeed adopt such an optimal strategy. Understanding cytoskeletal-assisted protein transport is crucial since axonal and cell body accumulation of organelles and proteins is a histological feature in many human neurodegenerative diseases. In this paper, we have shown that axonal transport performance changes with altered transport component concentrations and transport speeds wherein these aspects can be modulated to improve axonal efficiency and prevent or slowdown axonal deterioration.

  17. Computational modeling reveals optimal strategy for kinase transport by microtubules to nerve terminals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yen Ling Koon

    Full Text Available Intracellular transport of proteins by motors along cytoskeletal filaments is crucial to the proper functioning of many eukaryotic cells. Since most proteins are synthesized at the cell body, mechanisms are required to deliver them to the growing periphery. In this article, we use computational modeling to study the strategies of protein transport in the context of JNK (c-JUN NH2-terminal kinase transport along microtubules to the terminals of neuronal cells. One such strategy for protein transport is for the proteins of the JNK signaling cascade to bind to scaffolds, and to have the whole protein-scaffold cargo transported by kinesin motors along microtubules. We show how this strategy outperforms protein transport by diffusion alone, using metrics such as signaling rate and signal amplification. We find that there exists a range of scaffold concentrations for which JNK transport is optimal. Increase in scaffold concentration increases signaling rate and signal amplification but an excess of scaffolds results in the dilution of reactants. Similarly, there exists a range of kinesin motor speeds for which JNK transport is optimal. Signaling rate and signal amplification increases with kinesin motor speed until the speed of motor translocation becomes faster than kinase/scaffold-motor binding. Finally, we suggest experiments that can be performed to validate whether, in physiological conditions, neuronal cells do indeed adopt such an optimal strategy. Understanding cytoskeletal-assisted protein transport is crucial since axonal and cell body accumulation of organelles and proteins is a histological feature in many human neurodegenerative diseases. In this paper, we have shown that axonal transport performance changes with altered transport component concentrations and transport speeds wherein these aspects can be modulated to improve axonal efficiency and prevent or slowdown axonal deterioration.

  18. Campus network security model study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yong-ku; Song, Li-ren

    2011-12-01

    Campus network security is growing importance, Design a very effective defense hacker attacks, viruses, data theft, and internal defense system, is the focus of the study in this paper. This paper compared the firewall; IDS based on the integrated, then design of a campus network security model, and detail the specific implementation principle.

  19. Urban Studies: A Learning Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Terry L.; Sundeen, Richard

    1979-01-01

    The urban studies learning model described in this article was found to increase students' self-esteem, imbue a more flexible and open perspective, contribute to the capacity for self-direction, produce increases on the feeling reactivity, spontaneity, and acceptance of aggression scales, and expand interpersonal competence. (Author/WI)

  20. Four studies of economic behavior : integrating revealed and stated preferences data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Ree, J.J.

    2010-01-01

    This thesis estimates equivalence scales for Indonesia, proposes a new type of test of the life-cycle model, shows how important economic and demographic characteristics of Dutch households evolve over age, cohorts and time, and studies the decision problem to when and how much to work, save and

  1. Talaromyces marneffei Genomic, Transcriptomic, Proteomic and Metabolomic Studies Reveal Mechanisms for Environmental Adaptations and Virulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susanna K. P. Lau

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Talaromyces marneffei is a thermally dimorphic fungus causing systemic infections in patients positive for HIV or other immunocompromised statuses. Analysis of its ~28.9 Mb draft genome and additional transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic studies revealed mechanisms for environmental adaptations and virulence. Meiotic genes and genes for pheromone receptors, enzymes which process pheromones, and proteins involved in pheromone response pathway are present, indicating its possibility as a heterothallic fungus. Among the 14 Mp1p homologs, only Mp1p is a virulence factor binding a variety of host proteins, fatty acids and lipids. There are 23 polyketide synthase genes, one for melanin and two for mitorubrinic acid/mitorubrinol biosynthesis, which are virulence factors. Another polyketide synthase is for biogenesis of the diffusible red pigment, which consists of amino acid conjugates of monascorubin and rubropunctatin. Novel microRNA-like RNAs (milRNAs and processing proteins are present. The dicer protein, dcl-2, is required for biogenesis of two milRNAs, PM-milR-M1 and PM-milR-M2, which are more highly expressed in hyphal cells. Comparative transcriptomics showed that tandem repeat-containing genes were overexpressed in yeast phase, generating protein polymorphism among cells, evading host’s immunity. Comparative proteomics between yeast and hyphal cells revealed that glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, up-regulated in hyphal cells, is an adhesion factor for conidial attachment.

  2. Principles of proteome allocation are revealed using proteomic data and genome-scale models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yang, Laurence; Yurkovich, James T.; Lloyd, Colton J.

    2016-01-01

    , prediction errors for growth rate and metabolic fluxes were 69% and 14% lower, respectively. The sector-constrained ME model thus represents a generalist ME model reflecting both growth rate maximization and "hedging" against uncertain environments and stresses, as indicated by significant enrichment...... of these sectors for the general stress response sigma factor sigma(S). Finally, the sector constraints represent a general formalism for integrating omics data from any experimental condition into constraint-based ME models. The constraints can be fine-grained (individual proteins) or coarse-grained (functionally......-related protein groups) as demonstrated here. This flexible formalism provides an accessible approach for narrowing the gap between the complexity captured by omics data and governing principles of proteome allocation described by systems-level models....

  3. Human disease modeling reveals integrated transcriptional and epigenetic mechanisms of NOTCH1 haploinsufficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theodoris, Christina V; Li, Molong; White, Mark P; Liu, Lei; He, Daniel; Pollard, Katherine S; Bruneau, Benoit G; Srivastava, Deepak

    2015-03-12

    The mechanisms by which transcription factor haploinsufficiency alters the epigenetic and transcriptional landscape in human cells to cause disease are unknown. Here, we utilized human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived endothelial cells (ECs) to show that heterozygous nonsense mutations in NOTCH1 that cause aortic valve calcification disrupt the epigenetic architecture, resulting in derepression of latent pro-osteogenic and -inflammatory gene networks. Hemodynamic shear stress, which protects valves from calcification in vivo, activated anti-osteogenic and anti-inflammatory networks in NOTCH1(+/+), but not NOTCH1(+/-), iPSC-derived ECs. NOTCH1 haploinsufficiency altered H3K27ac at NOTCH1-bound enhancers, dysregulating downstream transcription of more than 1,000 genes involved in osteogenesis, inflammation, and oxidative stress. Computational predictions of the disrupted NOTCH1-dependent gene network revealed regulatory nodes that, when modulated, restored the network toward the NOTCH1(+/+) state. Our results highlight how alterations in transcription factor dosage affect gene networks leading to human disease and reveal nodes for potential therapeutic intervention. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. HARMONIC LOAD MODELING: A CASE STUDY OF 33 KV ABUJA ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    HOD

    model spectrum of the feeder under study revealed that the 11th and 13thharmonic orders have the highest percentage of amplitude relative to the ... model spectrum showed that the 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 32nd, 33rd and 34thharmonic orders have higher percentage of .... Design/Electromagnetic Transients including DC.

  5. Commensurate comparisons of models with energy budget observations reveal consistent climate sensitivities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armour, K.

    2017-12-01

    Global energy budget observations have been widely used to constrain the effective, or instantaneous climate sensitivity (ICS), producing median estimates around 2°C (Otto et al. 2013; Lewis & Curry 2015). A key question is whether the comprehensive climate models used to project future warming are consistent with these energy budget estimates of ICS. Yet, performing such comparisons has proven challenging. Within models, values of ICS robustly vary over time, as surface temperature patterns evolve with transient warming, and are generally smaller than the values of equilibrium climate sensitivity (ECS). Naively comparing values of ECS in CMIP5 models (median of about 3.4°C) to observation-based values of ICS has led to the suggestion that models are overly sensitive. This apparent discrepancy can partially be resolved by (i) comparing observation-based values of ICS to model values of ICS relevant for historical warming (Armour 2017; Proistosescu & Huybers 2017); (ii) taking into account the "efficacies" of non-CO2 radiative forcing agents (Marvel et al. 2015); and (iii) accounting for the sparseness of historical temperature observations and differences in sea-surface temperature and near-surface air temperature over the oceans (Richardson et al. 2016). Another potential source of discrepancy is a mismatch between observed and simulated surface temperature patterns over recent decades, due to either natural variability or model deficiencies in simulating historical warming patterns. The nature of the mismatch is such that simulated patterns can lead to more positive radiative feedbacks (higher ICS) relative to those engendered by observed patterns. The magnitude of this effect has not yet been addressed. Here we outline an approach to perform fully commensurate comparisons of climate models with global energy budget observations that take all of the above effects into account. We find that when apples-to-apples comparisons are made, values of ICS in models are

  6. Revealed Preference Methods for Studying Bicycle Route Choice-A Systematic Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pritchard, Ray

    2018-03-07

    One fundamental aspect of promoting utilitarian bicycle use involves making modifications to the built environment to improve the safety, efficiency and enjoyability of cycling. Revealed preference data on bicycle route choice can assist greatly in understanding the actual behaviour of a highly heterogeneous group of users, which in turn assists the prioritisation of infrastructure or other built environment initiatives. This systematic review seeks to compare the relative strengths and weaknesses of the empirical approaches for evaluating whole journey route choices of bicyclists. Two electronic databases were systematically searched for a selection of keywords pertaining to bicycle and route choice. In total seven families of methods are identified: GPS devices, smartphone applications, crowdsourcing, participant-recalled routes, accompanied journeys, egocentric cameras and virtual reality. The study illustrates a trade-off in the quality of data obtainable and the average number of participants. Future additional methods could include dockless bikeshare, multiple camera solutions using computer vision and immersive bicycle simulator environments.

  7. Protein expression studies of desmoplakin mutations in cardiomyopathy patients reveal different molecular disease mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, T. B.; Hansen, J.; Nissen, P. H.

    2013-01-01

    . This study aimed to investigate protein expression in myocardial and epidermal tissue of ARVC and CS patients carrying DSP mutations in order to elucidate potential molecular disease mechanisms. Genetic investigations identified three ARVC patients carrying different heterozygous DSP mutations in addition...... to a homozygous DSP mutation in a CS patient. The protein expression of DSP in mutation carriers was evaluated in biopsies from myocardial and epidermal tissue by immunohistochemistry. Keratinocyte cultures were established from skin biopsies of mutation carriers and characterized by reverse transcriptase...... polymerase chain reaction, western blotting, and protein mass spectrometry. The results showed that the mutation carriers had abnormal DSP expression in both myocardial and epidermal tissue. The investigations revealed that the disease mechanisms varied accordingly to the specific types of DSP mutation...

  8. Revealed Preference Methods for Studying Bicycle Route Choice—A Systematic Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ray Pritchard

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available One fundamental aspect of promoting utilitarian bicycle use involves making modifications to the built environment to improve the safety, efficiency and enjoyability of cycling. Revealed preference data on bicycle route choice can assist greatly in understanding the actual behaviour of a highly heterogeneous group of users, which in turn assists the prioritisation of infrastructure or other built environment initiatives. This systematic review seeks to compare the relative strengths and weaknesses of the empirical approaches for evaluating whole journey route choices of bicyclists. Two electronic databases were systematically searched for a selection of keywords pertaining to bicycle and route choice. In total seven families of methods are identified: GPS devices, smartphone applications, crowdsourcing, participant-recalled routes, accompanied journeys, egocentric cameras and virtual reality. The study illustrates a trade-off in the quality of data obtainable and the average number of participants. Future additional methods could include dockless bikeshare, multiple camera solutions using computer vision and immersive bicycle simulator environments.

  9. A passionate way of being: A qualitative study revealing the passion spiral

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susanna M. Halonen

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Being engaged in an activity one is passionate about has been tied to feeling life is worth living for. Existing research in passion has explored this phenomenon purely using quantitative research methodology, and by tying an individual’s passion to a specific activity. In this study, passion was explored in semi-structured interviews with 12 participants. The qualitative grounded theory analysis revealed a passionate way of being, with passion being located in the individual rather than in a specific activity. A new phenomenon to positive psychology, a passionate way of being is about having a purpose, creating positive impact, and pursuing variety. These key elements, amongst others, created a reinforcing, self-sustaining spiral, which offered a route to hedonic and eudaimonic happiness, generally serving to enhance life (though it could also detract from life if it became overpowering.

  10. Metabolic and transcriptomic analysis of Huntington’s disease model reveal changes in intracellular glucose levels and related genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gepoliano Chaves

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Huntington’s Disease (HD is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by an expansion in a CAG-tri-nucleotide repeat that introduces a poly-glutamine stretch into the huntingtin protein (mHTT. Mutant huntingtin (mHTT has been associated with several phenotypes including mood disorders and depression. Additionally, HD patients are known to be more susceptible to type II diabetes mellitus (T2DM, and HD mice model develops diabetes. However, the mechanism and pathways that link Huntington’s disease and diabetes have not been well established. Understanding the underlying mechanisms can reveal potential targets for drug development in HD. In this study, we investigated the transcriptome of mHTT cell populations alongside intracellular glucose measurements using a functionalized nanopipette. Several genes related to glucose uptake and glucose homeostasis are affected. We observed changes in intracellular glucose concentrations and identified altered transcript levels of certain genes including Sorcs1, Hh-II and Vldlr. Our data suggest that these can be used as markers for HD progression. Sorcs1 may not only have a role in glucose metabolism and trafficking but also in glutamatergic pathways affecting trafficking of synaptic components.

  11. Metabolite Profiling Reveals the Effect of Dietary Rubus coreanus Vinegar on Ovariectomy-Induced Osteoporosis in a Rat Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Mee Youn; Kim, Hyang Yeon; Singh, Digar; Yeo, Soo Hwan; Baek, Seong Yeol; Park, Yoo Kyoung; Lee, Choong Hwan

    2016-01-26

    The study was aimed at exploring the curative effects of Rubus coreanus (RC) vinegar against postmenopausal osteoporosis by using ovariectomized rats as a model. The investigations were performed in five groups: sham, ovariectomized (OVX) rats without treatment, low-dose RC vinegar (LRV)-treated OVX rats, high-dose RC vinegar (HRV)-treated OVX rats and alendronate (ALEN)-treated OVX rats. The efficacy of RC vinegar was evaluated using physical, biochemical, histological and metabolomic parameters. Compared to the OVX rats, the LRV and HRV groups showed positive effects on the aforementioned parameters, indicating estrogen regulation. Plasma metabolome analysis of the groups using gas chromatography-time of flight mass spectrometry (GC-TOF-MS) and ultra-performance liquid chromatography quadrupole-TOF-MS (UPLC-Q-TOF-MS) with multivariate analysis revealed 19 and 16 metabolites, respectively. Notably, the levels of butyric acid, phenylalanine, glucose, tryptophan and some lysophosphatidylcholines were marginally increased in RC vinegar-treated groups compared to OVX. However, the pattern of metabolite levels in RC vinegar-treated groups was found similar to ALEN, but differed significantly from that in sham group. The results highlight the prophylactic and curative potential of dietary vinegar against postmenopausal osteoporosis. RC vinegar could be an effective natural alternative for the prevention of postmenopausal osteoporosis.

  12. A Murine Model for Human ECO Syndrome Reveals a Critical Role of Intestinal Cell Kinase in Skeletal Development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Mengmeng; Jin, Li; Xie, Lin; Park, So Hyun; Tong, Yixin; Wu, Di; Chhabra, A Bobby; Fu, Zheng; Li, Xudong

    2018-03-01

    An autosomal-recessive inactivating mutation R272Q in the human intestinal cell kinase (ICK) gene caused profound multiplex developmental defects in human endocrine-cerebro-osteodysplasia (ECO) syndrome. ECO patients exhibited a wide variety of skeletal abnormalities, yet the underlying mechanisms by which ICK regulates skeletal development remained largely unknown. The goal of this study was to understand the structural and mechanistic basis underlying skeletal anomalies caused by ICK dysfunction. Ick R272Q knock-in transgenic mouse model not only recapitulated major ECO skeletal defects such as short limbs and polydactyly but also revealed a deformed spine with defective intervertebral disk. Loss of ICK function markedly reduced mineralization in the spinal column, ribs, and long bones. Ick mutants showed a significant decrease in the proliferation zone of long bones and the number of type X collagen-expressing hypertrophic chondrocytes in the spinal column and the growth plate of long bones. These results implicate that ICK plays an important role in bone and cartilage development by promoting chondrocyte proliferation and maturation. Our findings provided new mechanistic insights into the skeletal phenotype of human ECO and ECO-like syndromes.

  13. Mechanistic Modeling Reveals the Critical Knowledge Gaps in Bile Acid-Mediated DILI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodhead, J L; Yang, K; Brouwer, K L R; Siler, S Q; Stahl, S H; Ambroso, J L; Baker, D; Watkins, P B; Howell, B A

    2014-07-09

    Bile salt export pump (BSEP) inhibition has been proposed to be an important mechanism for drug-induced liver injury (DILI). Modeling can prioritize knowledge gaps concerning bile acid (BA) homeostasis and thus help guide experimentation. A submodel of BA homeostasis in rats and humans was constructed within DILIsym, a mechanistic model of DILI. In vivo experiments in rats with glibenclamide were conducted, and data from these experiments were used to validate the model. The behavior of DILIsym was analyzed in the presence of a simulated theoretical BSEP inhibitor. BSEP inhibition in humans is predicted to increase liver concentrations of conjugated chenodeoxycholic acid (CDCA) and sulfate-conjugated lithocholic acid (LCA) while the concentration of other liver BAs remains constant or decreases. On the basis of a sensitivity analysis, the most important unknowns are the level of BSEP expression, the amount of intestinal synthesis of LCA, and the magnitude of farnesoid-X nuclear receptor (FXR)-mediated regulation.

  14. A mouse model of visual perceptual learning reveals alterations in neuronal coding and dendritic spine density in the visual cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan eWang

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Visual perceptual learning (VPL can improve spatial vision in normally sighted and visually impaired individuals. Although previous studies of humans and large animals have explored the neural basis of VPL, elucidation of the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms remains a challenge. Owing to the advantages of molecular genetic and optogenetic manipulations, the mouse is a promising model for providing a mechanistic understanding of VPL. Here, we thoroughly evaluated the effects and properties of VPL on spatial vision in C57BL/6J mice using a two-alternative, forced-choice visual water task. Briefly, the mice underwent prolonged training at near the individual threshold of contrast or spatial frequency (SF for pattern discrimination or visual detection for 35 consecutive days. Following training, the contrast-threshold trained mice showed an 87% improvement in contrast sensitivity (CS and a 55% gain in visual acuity (VA. Similarly, the SF-threshold trained mice exhibited comparable and long-lasting improvements in VA and significant gains in CS over a wide range of SFs. Furthermore, learning largely transferred across eyes and stimulus orientations. Interestingly, learning could transfer from a pattern discrimination task to a visual detection task, but not vice versa. We validated that this VPL fully restored VA in adult amblyopic mice and old mice. Taken together, these data indicate that mice, as a species, exhibit reliable VPL. Intrinsic signal optical imaging revealed that mice with perceptual training had higher cut-off SFs in primary visual cortex (V1 than those without perceptual training. Moreover, perceptual training induced an increase in the dendritic spine density in layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons of V1. These results indicated functional and structural alterations in V1 during VPL. Overall, our VPL mouse model will provide a platform for investigating the neurobiological basis of VPL.

  15. Kuala Kemaman hydraulic model study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abdul Kadir Ishak

    2005-01-01

    There The problems facing the area of Kuala Kemaman are siltation and erosion at shoreline. The objectives of study are to assess the best alignment of the groyne alignment, to ascertain the most stable shoreline regime and to investigate structural measures to overcome the erosion. The scope of study are data collection, wave analysis, hydrodynamic simulation and sediment transport simulation. Numerical models MIKE 21 are used - MIKE 21 NSW, for wind-wave model, which describes the growth, decay and transformation of wind-generated waves and swell in nearshore areas. The study takes into account effects of refraction and shoaling due to varying depth, energy dissipation due to bottom friction and wave breaking, MIKE 21 HD - modelling system for 2D free-surface flow which to stimulate the hydraulics phenomena in estuaries, coastal areas and seas. Predicted tidal elevation and waves (radiation stresses) are considered into study while wind is not considered. MIKE 21 ST - the system that calculates the rates of non-cohesive (sand) sediment transport for both pure content and combined waves and current situation

  16. An evolutionary-network model reveals stratified interactions in the V3 loop of the HIV-1 envelope.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Art F Y Poon

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available The third variable loop (V3 of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1 envelope is a principal determinant of antibody neutralization and progression to AIDS. Although it is undoubtedly an important target for vaccine research, extensive genetic variation in V3 remains an obstacle to the development of an effective vaccine. Comparative methods that exploit the abundance of sequence data can detect interactions between residues of rapidly evolving proteins such as the HIV-1 envelope, revealing biological constraints on their variability. However, previous studies have relied implicitly on two biologically unrealistic assumptions: (1 that founder effects in the evolutionary history of the sequences can be ignored, and; (2 that statistical associations between residues occur exclusively in pairs. We show that comparative methods that neglect the evolutionary history of extant sequences are susceptible to a high rate of false positives (20%-40%. Therefore, we propose a new method to detect interactions that relaxes both of these assumptions. First, we reconstruct the evolutionary history of extant sequences by maximum likelihood, shifting focus from extant sequence variation to the underlying substitution events. Second, we analyze the joint distribution of substitution events among positions in the sequence as a Bayesian graphical model, in which each branch in the phylogeny is a unit of observation. We perform extensive validation of our models using both simulations and a control case of known interactions in HIV-1 protease, and apply this method to detect interactions within V3 from a sample of 1,154 HIV-1 envelope sequences. Our method greatly reduces the number of false positives due to founder effects, while capturing several higher-order interactions among V3 residues. By mapping these interactions to a structural model of the V3 loop, we find that the loop is stratified into distinct evolutionary clusters. We extend our model to

  17. Valuing snorkeling visits to the Florida Keys with stated and revealed preference models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timothy Park; J. Michael Bowker; Vernon R. Leeworthy

    2002-01-01

    Coastal coral reefs, especially in the Florida Keys, are declining at a disturbing rate. Marine ecologists and reef scientists have emphasized the importance of establishing nonmarket values of coral reefs to assess the cost effectiveness of coral reef management and remediation programs. The purpose of this paper is to develop a travel cost--contingent valuation model...

  18. Revealing spatial pattern dynamics in aquatic ecosystem modelling with Multi-Agent Systems in Lake Veluwe

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Li, H.; Mynett, A.; Penning, E.; Qi, H.

    2010-01-01

    Aquatic ecosystems are among the most complex due to the highly nonlinearity, randomness, as well as interactive multi-processes in multi-scales. Besides, highly limited understanding and very limited measurement data make the modelling of such kind of systems a very challenging task, which needs to

  19. Gray box modeling of MSW degradation : Revealing its dominant (bio)chemical mechanism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Turnhout, A.G.; Heimovaara, T.J.; Kleerebezem, R.

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we present an approach to describe organic degradation within immobile water regions of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) landfills which is best described by the term “gray box” model. We use a simplified set of dominant (bio)chemical and physical reactions and realistic environmental

  20. Higher surface mass balance of the Greenland ice sheet revealed by high-resolution climate modeling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ettema, J.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/304831913; van den Broeke, M.R.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/073765643; van Meijgaard, E.; van de Berg, W.J.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/304831611; Bamber, Jonathan L.; Box, J.E.; Bales, R.C.

    2009-01-01

    High-resolution (∼11 km) regional climate modeling shows total annual precipitation on the Greenland ice sheet for 1958–2007 to be up to 24% and surface mass balance up to 63% higher than previously thought. The largest differences occur in coastal southeast Greenland, where the much higher

  1. Using fuzzy logic models to reveal farmers' motives to integrate livestock, fish, and crops

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bosma, R.H.

    2007-01-01

    Rural extension services have changed paradigm and shifted to more participatory approaches, whereas in common mathematical models of farming systems, farmers’ motivation is solely represented by ‘utility maximisation’. While globally, farmers specialise, in Vietnam the rice-based systems have

  2. Inclusion of the glucocorticoid receptor in a hypothalamic pituitary adrenal axis model reveals bistability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vernon Suzanne D

    2007-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The body's primary stress management system is the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal (HPA axis. The HPA axis responds to physical and mental challenge to maintain homeostasis in part by controlling the body's cortisol level. Dysregulation of the HPA axis is implicated in numerous stress-related diseases. Results We developed a structured model of the HPA axis that includes the glucocorticoid receptor (GR. This model incorporates nonlinear kinetics of pituitary GR synthesis. The nonlinear effect arises from the fact that GR homodimerizes after cortisol activation and induces its own synthesis in the pituitary. This homodimerization makes possible two stable steady states (low and high and one unstable state of cortisol production resulting in bistability of the HPA axis. In this model, low GR concentration represents the normal steady state, and high GR concentration represents a dysregulated steady state. A short stress in the normal steady state produces a small perturbation in the GR concentration that quickly returns to normal levels. Long, repeated stress produces persistent and high GR concentration that does not return to baseline forcing the HPA axis to an alternate steady state. One consequence of increased steady state GR is reduced steady state cortisol, which has been observed in some stress related disorders such as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS. Conclusion Inclusion of pituitary GR expression resulted in a biologically plausible model of HPA axis bistability and hypocortisolism. High GR concentration enhanced cortisol negative feedback on the hypothalamus and forced the HPA axis into an alternative, low cortisol state. This model can be used to explore mechanisms underlying disorders of the HPA axis.

  3. Conserved intergenic sequences revealed by CTAG-profiling in Salmonella: thermodynamic modeling for function prediction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Le; Zhu, Songling; Mastriani, Emilio; Fang, Xin; Zhou, Yu-Jie; Li, Yong-Guo; Johnston, Randal N.; Guo, Zheng; Liu, Gui-Rong; Liu, Shu-Lin

    2017-03-01

    Highly conserved short sequences help identify functional genomic regions and facilitate genomic annotation. We used Salmonella as the model to search the genome for evolutionarily conserved regions and focused on the tetranucleotide sequence CTAG for its potentially important functions. In Salmonella, CTAG is highly conserved across the lineages and large numbers of CTAG-containing short sequences fall in intergenic regions, strongly indicating their biological importance. Computer modeling demonstrated stable stem-loop structures in some of the CTAG-containing intergenic regions, and substitution of a nucleotide of the CTAG sequence would radically rearrange the free energy and disrupt the structure. The postulated degeneration of CTAG takes distinct patterns among Salmonella lineages and provides novel information about genomic divergence and evolution of these bacterial pathogens. Comparison of the vertically and horizontally transmitted genomic segments showed different CTAG distribution landscapes, with the genome amelioration process to remove CTAG taking place inward from both terminals of the horizontally acquired segment.

  4. Interstitial void structure in Cu Sn liquid alloy as revealed from reverse Monte Carlo modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoyer, W.; Kleinhempel, R.; Lorinczi, A.; Pohlers, A.; Popescu, M.; Sava, F.

    2005-02-01

    A model for the structure of copper-tin liquid alloy has been developed using the standard reverse Monte Carlo method. The interstitial void structure (size distribution) was analysed. The effects of various kinds of voids (small size and large size) on the interference function and radial distribution function were investigated. Predictions related to the formation of some ternary alloys by filling the interstices of the basic alloy were advanced.

  5. Crust and Mantle Deformation Revealed from High-Resolution Radially Anisotropic Velocity Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, A.; Dave, R.; Yao, Y.

    2017-12-01

    Love wave tomography, which can achieve a similar model resolution as Rayleigh wave, so far has limited applications to the USArray data. Recently, we have developed high-resolution Love wave phase velocity maps in the Wyoming craton and Texas using data at the Transportable Array stations. 3-D, radially anisotropic velocity models are obtained by jointly inverting Love and Rayleigh wave phase velocities. A high-velocity anomaly extending to about 200 km depth beneath central Wyoming correlates with negative radial anisotropy (Vsv>Vsh), suggesting that mantle downwelling develops under the cratonic lithosphere. Surprisingly, the significantly low velocity beneath the Yellowstone hotspot, which has been interpreted as partial melting and asthenospheric upwelling, is associated with the largest radial anisotropy (Vsh>Vsv) in the area. This observation does not support mantle upwelling. Instead, it indicates that the upper mantle beneath the hotspot has experienced strong shear deformation probably by the plate motion and large-scale mantle flow. In Texas, positive radial anisotropy in the lower crust extends from the coast to the Ouachita belt, which is characterized by high velocity and negative radial anisotropy. In the upper mantle, large variations of velocity and anisotropy exit under the coastal plain. A common feature in these anisotropic models is that high-velocity anomalies in the upper mantle often correlate with negative anisotropy (Vsv>Vsh) while low-velocity anomalies are associated with positive anisotropy (Vsh>Vsv). The manifestation of mantle downweling as negative radial anisotropy is largely due to the relatively high viscosity of the high-velocity mantle block, which is less affected by the surrounding large-scale horizontal flow. However, mantle upwelling, which is often associated with low-velocity anomalies, presumably low-viscosity mantle blocks, is invisible in radial anisotropy models. Such upwelling may happen too quickly to make last

  6. Phylogenetic structural equation modelling reveals no need for an 'origin' of the leaf economics spectrum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Chase M; Goolsby, Eric W; Humphreys, Devon P; Donovan, Lisa A

    2016-01-01

    The leaf economics spectrum (LES) is a prominent ecophysiological paradigm that describes global variation in leaf physiology across plant ecological strategies using a handful of key traits. Nearly a decade ago, Shipley et al. (2006) used structural equation modelling to explore the causal functional relationships among LES traits that give rise to their strong global covariation. They concluded that an unmeasured trait drives LES covariation, sparking efforts to identify the latent physiological trait underlying the 'origin' of the LES. Here, we use newly developed phylogenetic structural equation modelling approaches to reassess these conclusions using both global LES data as well as data collected across scales in the genus Helianthus. For global LES data, accounting for phylogenetic non-independence indicates that no additional unmeasured traits are required to explain LES covariation. Across datasets in Helianthus, trait relationships are highly variable, indicating that global-scale models may poorly describe LES covariation at non-global scales. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  7. Pollution history of a tropical estuary revealed by combined hydrodynamic modelling and sediment geochemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, J. E.; Greenaway, A. M.; Bigg, G. R.; Webber, D. F.; Dennis, P. F.; Guthrie, G. A.

    1999-01-01

    Hydrodynamic modelling of water movement in Hunts Bay, a protected part of Kingston Harbour, Jamaica, shows that depth averaged tidal flows are very low. In the northeast corner of Hunts Bay, water is essentially stagnant. Even under high flow conditions, much of the Bay bottom water is `bypassed' by buoyant, lower salinity surface flows. The muddy sediments of Hunts Bay reflect these sluggish to stagnant conditions; sediment cores from the northeast corner of the Bay contain progressively higher amounts of organic matter in their upper parts (˜last 15-20 years sedimentation). Combined C/N ratios and stable carbon isotope compositions of this organic matter imply a sewage origin. Both lead and chromium metal concentrations and enrichment factors relative to average crustal shales show geographically related patterns that reflect hydrodynamic circulation predicted by modelling. In particular, metal concentrations and enrichment factors are highest at the northern end of the bay, especially in the northeast corner. Modelling confirms that stagnant conditions would occur in the northeast part of the bay even without the presence of a major causeway. The causeway may contribute to low flow conditions, but is not the principal cause of organic contamination, which is simply an excessive input of sewage.

  8. Integrative demographic modeling reveals population level impacts of PCB toxicity to juvenile snapping turtles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salice, Christopher J; Rowe, Christopher L; Eisenreich, Karen M

    2014-01-01

    A significant challenge in ecotoxicology and risk assessment lies in placing observed contaminant effects in a meaningful ecological context. Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) have been shown to affect juvenile snapping turtle survival and growth but the ecological significance of these effects is difficult to discern without a formal, population-level assessment. We used a demographic matrix model to explore the potential population-level effects of PCBs on turtles. Our model showed that effects of PCBs on juvenile survival, growth and size at hatching could translate to negative effects at the population level despite the fact that these life cycle components do not typically contribute strongly to population level processes. This research points to the utility of using integrative demographic modeling approaches to better understand contaminant effects in wildlife. The results indicate that population-level effects are only evident after several years, suggesting that for long-lived species, detecting adverse contaminant effects could prove challenging. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Occupancy models to study wildlife

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bailey, Larissa; Adams, Michael John

    2005-01-01

    Many wildlife studies seek to understand changes or differences in the proportion of sites occupied by a species of interest. These studies are hampered by imperfect detection of these species, which can result in some sites appearing to be unoccupied that are actually occupied. Occupancy models solve this problem and produce unbiased estimates of occupancy and related parameters. Required data (detection/non-detection information) are relatively simple and inexpensive to collect. Software is available free of charge to aid investigators in occupancy estimation.

  10. Fish gut-liver immunity during homeostasis or inflammation revealed by integrative transcriptome and proteome studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Nan; Song, Yu-Long; Wang, Bei; Zhang, Xiang-Yang; Zhang, Xu-Jie; Wang, Ya-Li; Cheng, Ying-Yin; Chen, Dan-Dan; Xia, Xiao-Qin; Lu, Yi-Shan; Zhang, Yong-An

    2016-11-01

    The gut-associated lymphoid tissue, connected with liver via bile and blood, constructs a local immune environment of both defense and tolerance. The gut-liver immunity has been well-studied in mammals, yet in fish remains largely unknown, even though enteritis as well as liver and gallbladder syndrome emerged as a limitation in aquaculture. In this study, we performed integrative bioinformatic analysis for both transcriptomic (gut and liver) and proteomic (intestinal mucus and bile) data, in both healthy and infected tilapias. We found more categories of immune transcripts in gut than liver, as well as more adaptive immune in gut meanwhile more innate in liver. Interestingly reduced differential immune transcripts between gut and liver upon inflammation were also revealed. In addition, more immune proteins in bile than intestinal mucus were identified. And bile probably providing immune effectors to intestinal mucus upon inflammation was deduced. Specifically, many key immune transcripts in gut or liver as well as key immune proteins in mucus or bile were demonstrated. Accordingly, we proposed a hypothesized profile of fish gut-liver immunity, during either homeostasis or inflammation. Current data suggested that fish gut and liver may collaborate immunologically while keep homeostasis using own strategies, including potential unique mechanisms.

  11. Single exosome study reveals subpopulations distributed among cell lines with variability related to membrane content

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zachary J. Smith

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Current analysis of exosomes focuses primarily on bulk analysis, where exosome-to-exosome variability cannot be assessed. In this study, we used Raman spectroscopy to study the chemical composition of single exosomes. We measured spectra of individual exosomes from 8 cell lines. Cell-line-averaged spectra varied considerably, reflecting the variation in total exosomal protein, lipid, genetic, and cytosolic content. Unexpectedly, single exosomes isolated from the same cell type also exhibited high spectral variability. Subsequent spectral analysis revealed clustering of single exosomes into 4 distinct groups that were not cell-line specific. Each group contained exosomes from multiple cell lines, and most cell lines had exosomes in multiple groups. The differences between these groups are related to chemical differences primarily due to differing membrane composition. Through a principal components analysis, we identified that the major sources of spectral variation among the exosomes were in cholesterol content, relative expression of phospholipids to cholesterol, and surface protein expression. For example, exosomes derived from cancerous versus non-cancerous cell lines can be largely separated based on their relative expression of cholesterol and phospholipids. We are the first to indicate that exosome subpopulations are shared among cell types, suggesting distributed exosome functionality. The origins of these differences are likely related to the specific role of extracellular vesicle subpopulations in both normal cell function and carcinogenesis, and they may provide diagnostic potential at the single exosome level.

  12. Oxidation mechanism of chalcopyrite revealed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and first principles studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiong, Xiaolu; Hua, Xiaoming; Zheng, Yongfei; Lu, Xionggang; Li, Shenggang; Cheng, Hongwei; Xu, Qian

    2018-01-01

    X-ray photoelectron spectroscopic (XPS) studies revealed that the iron site on the chalcopyrite (CuFeS2) surface was preferably oxidized to the Cu site when exposed to an oxidizing environment. Extensive density functional theory calculations were performed to investigate the surface structure of chalcopyrite and its reaction with both molecular oxygen (O2) and water. The adsorption and dissociation of a single O2 molecule, a single H2O molecule, as well as both molecules at the Fe and Cu sites on the CuFeS2 (001) surface were studied. Consistent with our experimental observation, the Fe site was found to be preferred for the adsorption and dissociation of O2 due to its lower energy barrier and greater exothermicity. The dissociation of H2O on the CuFeS2 (001) surface by itself was found to be unfavorable both thermodynamically and kinetically. However, the surface formed upon O2 dissociation was predicted to be much more reactive with H2O, which was attributed to favorable hydrogen transfer to the O site formed upon O2 dissociation to hydrogen transfer to the S site due to the much weaker Ssbnd H bond than the Osbnd H bond.

  13. Genetic studies revealed differences between European and North American populations of Calypogeia azurea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Buczkowska Katarzyna

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Calypogeia azurea, a widespread, subboreal-montane liverwort species, is one of a few representatives of the Calypogeia genus that are characterized by the occurrence of blue oil bodies. The aim of the study was to investigate the genetic variation and population structure of C. azurea originating from different parts of its distribution range (Europe and North America. Plants of C. azurea were compared with C. peruviana, another Calypogeia species with blue oil bodies. In general, 339 gametophytes from 15 populations of C. azurea were examined. Total gene diversity (HT estimated on the basis of nine isozyme loci of C. azurea at the species level was 0.201. The mean Nei’s genetic distance between European populations was equal to 0.083, whereas the mean genetic distance between populations originating from Europe and North America was 0.413. The analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA showed that 69% of C. azurea genetic variation was distributed among regions (Europe and North America, 15% - among populations within regions, and 16% - within populations. Our study revealed that C. azurea showed genetic diversity within its geographic distribution. All examined samples classified as C. azurea differed in respect of isozyme patterns from C. peruviana.

  14. Future change of the global monsoon revealed from 19 CMIP5 models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Pang-chi; Li, Tim; Murakami, Hiroyuki; Kitoh, Akio

    2013-02-01

    The variability of global monsoon area (GMA), global monsoon precipitation (GMP), and global monsoon intensity (GMI) in the present climate (1979-2003) and the future warmer climate (2075-2099) under Representative Concentration Pathways 4.5 (RCP4.5) scenario was examined based on 19 Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) simulations. In the present-day simulations, the ensemble mean precipitation reproduces the observed GMA, GMP, and GMI, although the spread of individual models is large. In the RCP4.5 simulations, most (17 of 19) of the CMIP5 models project enhanced global monsoon activity, with the increases of GMA, GMP, and GMI by 1.9%, 3.2%, and 1.3%, respectively, per 1 K of surface warming. The diagnosis of a column-integrated moisture budget indicates that the increase in GMP is primarily attributed to the increases of moisture convergence and surface evaporation, whereas horizontal moisture advection has little effect. A further separation of dynamic and thermodynamic factors shows that increase of the moisture convergence comes mainly from the increase of water vapor, but is partly offset by the convergence effect. The increase of the surface evaporation is caused by the increase of sea-air specific humidity difference, while the change in surface wind speed plays a minor role. The GMP experiences a great year-to-year variation, and it is significantly negatively correlated with the Niño3.4 index averaged over a typical monsoon year (defined from May to the following April) in the pre-industrial control and present-day simulations, similar to observations. Under the RCP4.5 warming, such rainfall variability is intensified, and the relationship between monsoon and El Niño strengthens. A large proportion of intensification in the year-to-year monsoon rainfall variability arises from the land monsoon region.

  15. Mathematical modeling of atopic dermatitis reveals "double-switch" mechanisms underlying 4 common disease phenotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domínguez-Hüttinger, Elisa; Christodoulides, Panayiotis; Miyauchi, Kosuke; Irvine, Alan D; Okada-Hatakeyama, Mariko; Kubo, Masato; Tanaka, Reiko J

    2017-06-01

    The skin barrier acts as the first line of defense against constant exposure to biological, microbial, physical, and chemical environmental stressors. Dynamic interplay between defects in the skin barrier, dysfunctional immune responses, and environmental stressors are major factors in the development of atopic dermatitis (AD). A systems biology modeling approach can yield significant insights into these complex and dynamic processes through integration of prior biological data. We sought to develop a multiscale mathematical model of AD pathogenesis that describes the dynamic interplay between the skin barrier, environmental stress, and immune dysregulation and use it to achieve a coherent mechanistic understanding of the onset, progression, and prevention of AD. We mathematically investigated synergistic effects of known genetic and environmental risk factors on the dynamic onset and progression of the AD phenotype, from a mostly asymptomatic mild phenotype to a severe treatment-resistant form. Our model analysis identified a "double switch," with 2 concatenated bistable switches, as a key network motif that dictates AD pathogenesis: the first switch is responsible for the reversible onset of inflammation, and the second switch is triggered by long-lasting or frequent activation of the first switch, causing irreversible onset of systemic T H 2 sensitization and worsening of AD symptoms. Our mathematical analysis of the bistable switch predicts that genetic risk factors decrease the threshold of environmental stressors to trigger systemic T H 2 sensitization. This analysis predicts and explains 4 common clinical AD phenotypes from a mild and reversible phenotype through to severe and recalcitrant disease and provides a mechanistic explanation for clinically demonstrated preventive effects of emollient treatments against development of AD. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. REVEALING THE ACTIVATION PATHWAY FOR TMEM16A CHLORIDE CHANNELS FROM MACROSCOPIC CURRENTS AND KINETIC MODELS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contreras-Vite, Juan A.; Cruz-Rangel, Silvia; De Jesús-Pérez, José J.; Aréchiga Figueroa, Iván A.; Rodríguez-Menchaca, Aldo A.; Pérez-Cornejo, Patricia; Hartzell, H. Criss; Arreola, Jorge

    2017-01-01

    TMEM16A (ANO1), the pore-forming subunit of calcium-activated chloride channels, regulates several physiological and pathophysiological processes such as smooth muscle contraction, cardiac and neuronal excitability, salivary secretion, tumour growth, and cancer progression. Gating of TMEM16A is complex because it involves the interplay between increases in intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i), membrane depolarization, extracellular Cl− or permeant anions, and intracellular protons. Our goal here was to understand how these variables regulate TMEM16A gating and to explain four observations. a) TMEM16A is activated by voltage in the absence of intracellular Ca2+. b) The Cl− conductance is decreased after reducing extracellular Cl− concentration ([Cl−]o). c) ICl is regulated by physiological concentrations of [Cl−]o. d) In cells dialyzed with 0.2 µM [Ca2+]i, Cl− has a bimodal effect: at [Cl−]o < 30 mM TMEM16A current activates with a monoexponential time course, but above 30 mM [Cl−]o ICl activation displays fast and slow kinetics. To explain the contribution of Vm, Ca2+ and Cl− to gating, we developed a 12-state Markov chain model. This model explains TMEM16A activation as a sequential, direct, and Vm-dependent binding of two Ca2+ ions coupled to a Vm-dependent binding of an external Cl− ion, with Vm-dependent transitions between states. Our model predicts that extracellular Cl− does not alter the apparent Ca2+ affinity of TMEM16A, which we corroborated experimentally. Rather, extracellular Cl− acts by stabilizing the open configuration induced by Ca2+ and by contributing to the Vm dependence of activation. PMID:27138167

  17. Large-scale Models Reveal the Two-component Mechanics of Striated Muscle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Jarosch

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper provides a comprehensive explanation of striated muscle mechanics and contraction on the basis of filament rotations. Helical proteins, particularly the coiled-coils of tropomyosin, myosin and α-actinin, shorten their H-bonds cooperatively and produce torque and filament rotations when the Coulombic net-charge repulsion of their highly charged side-chains is diminished by interaction with ions. The classical “two-component model” of active muscle differentiated a “contractile component” which stretches the “series elastic component” during force production. The contractile components are the helically shaped thin filaments of muscle that shorten the sarcomeres by clockwise drilling into the myosin cross-bridges with torque decrease (= force-deficit. Muscle stretch means drawing out the thin filament helices off the cross-bridges under passive counterclockwise rotation with torque increase (= stretch activation. Since each thin filament is anchored by four elastic α-actinin Z-filaments (provided with forceregulating sites for Ca2+ binding, the thin filament rotations change the torsional twist of the four Z-filaments as the “series elastic components”. Large scale models simulate the changes of structure and force in the Z-band by the different Z-filament twisting stages A, B, C, D, E, F and G. Stage D corresponds to the isometric state. The basic phenomena of muscle physiology, i. e. latency relaxation, Fenn-effect, the force-velocity relation, the length-tension relation, unexplained energy, shortening heat, the Huxley-Simmons phases, etc. are explained and interpreted with the help of the model experiments.

  18. Modeling autosomal recessive cutis laxa type 1C in mice reveals distinct functions for Ltbp-4 isoforms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bultmann-Mellin, Insa; Conradi, Anne; Maul, Alexandra C

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies have revealed an important role for LTBP-4 in elastogenesis. Its mutational inactivation in humans causes autosomal recessive cutis laxa type 1C (ARCL1C), which is a severe disorder caused by defects of the elastic fiber network. Although the human gene involved in ARCL1C has been...

  19. Integrating fossils, phylogenies, and niche models into biogeography to reveal ancient evolutionary history: the case of Hypericum (hypericaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meseguer, Andrea S; Lobo, Jorge M; Ree, Richard; Beerling, David J; Sanmartín, Isabel

    2015-03-01

    In disciplines such as macroevolution that are not amenable to experimentation, scientists usually rely on current observations to test hypotheses about historical events, assuming that "the present is the key to the past." Biogeographers, for example, used this assumption to reconstruct ancestral ranges from the distribution of extant species. Yet, under scenarios of high extinction rates, the biodiversity we observe today might not be representative of the historical diversity and this could result in incorrect biogeographic reconstructions. Here, we introduce a new approach to incorporate into biogeographic inference the temporal, spatial, and environmental information provided by the fossil record, as a direct evidence of the extinct biodiversity fraction. First, inferences of ancestral ranges for those nodes in the phylogeny calibrated with the fossil record are constrained to include the geographic distribution of the fossil. Second, we use fossil distribution and past climate data to reconstruct the climatic preferences and potential distribution of ancestral lineages over time, and use this information to build a biogeographic model that takes into account "ecological connectivity" through time. To show the power of this approach, we reconstruct the biogeographic history of the large angiosperm genus Hypericum, which has a fossil record extending back to the Early Cenozoic. Unlike previous reconstructions based on extant species distributions, our results reveal that Hypericum stem lineages were already distributed in the Holarctic before diversification of its crown-group, and that the geographic distribution of the genus has been relatively stable throughout the climatic oscillations of the Cenozoic. Geographical movement was mediated by the existence of climatic corridors, like Beringia, whereas the equatorial tropical belt acted as a climatic barrier, preventing Hypericum lineages to reach the southern temperate regions. Our study shows that an

  20. Dynamic information processing states revealed through neurocognitive models of object semantics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Alex

    2015-01-01

    Recognising objects relies on highly dynamic, interactive brain networks to process multiple aspects of object information. To fully understand how different forms of information about objects are represented and processed in the brain requires a neurocognitive account of visual object recognition that combines a detailed cognitive model of semantic knowledge with a neurobiological model of visual object processing. Here we ask how specific cognitive factors are instantiated in our mental processes and how they dynamically evolve over time. We suggest that coarse semantic information, based on generic shared semantic knowledge, is rapidly extracted from visual inputs and is sufficient to drive rapid category decisions. Subsequent recurrent neural activity between the anterior temporal lobe and posterior fusiform supports the formation of object-specific semantic representations – a conjunctive process primarily driven by the perirhinal cortex. These object-specific representations require the integration of shared and distinguishing object properties and support the unique recognition of objects. We conclude that a valuable way of understanding the cognitive activity of the brain is though testing the relationship between specific cognitive measures and dynamic neural activity. This kind of approach allows us to move towards uncovering the information processing states of the brain and how they evolve over time. PMID:25745632

  1. Integrative Modeling Reveals Annexin A2-mediated Epigenetic Control of Mesenchymal Glioblastoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kling, Teresia; Ferrarese, Roberto; Ó hAilín, Darren; Johansson, Patrik; Heiland, Dieter Henrik; Dai, Fangping; Vasilikos, Ioannis; Weyerbrock, Astrid; Jörnsten, Rebecka; Carro, Maria Stella; Nelander, Sven

    2016-10-01

    Glioblastomas are characterized by transcriptionally distinct subtypes, but despite possible clinical relevance, their regulation remains poorly understood. The commonly used molecular classification systems for GBM all identify a subtype with high expression of mesenchymal marker transcripts, strongly associated with invasive growth. We used a comprehensive data-driven network modeling technique (augmented sparse inverse covariance selection, aSICS) to define separate genomic, epigenetic, and transcriptional regulators of glioblastoma subtypes. Our model identified Annexin A2 (ANXA2) as a novel methylation-controlled positive regulator of the mesenchymal subtype. Subsequent evaluation in two independent cohorts established ANXA2 expression as a prognostic factor that is dependent on ANXA2 promoter methylation. ANXA2 knockdown in primary glioblastoma stem cell-like cultures suppressed known mesenchymal master regulators, and abrogated cell proliferation and invasion. Our results place ANXA2 at the apex of a regulatory cascade that determines glioblastoma mesenchymal transformation and validate aSICS as a general methodology to uncover regulators of cancer subtypes. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  2. Integrative Modeling Reveals Annexin A2-mediated Epigenetic Control of Mesenchymal Glioblastoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teresia Kling

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Glioblastomas are characterized by transcriptionally distinct subtypes, but despite possible clinical relevance, their regulation remains poorly understood. The commonly used molecular classification systems for GBM all identify a subtype with high expression of mesenchymal marker transcripts, strongly associated with invasive growth. We used a comprehensive data-driven network modeling technique (augmented sparse inverse covariance selection, aSICS to define separate genomic, epigenetic, and transcriptional regulators of glioblastoma subtypes. Our model identified Annexin A2 (ANXA2 as a novel methylation-controlled positive regulator of the mesenchymal subtype. Subsequent evaluation in two independent cohorts established ANXA2 expression as a prognostic factor that is dependent on ANXA2 promoter methylation. ANXA2 knockdown in primary glioblastoma stem cell-like cultures suppressed known mesenchymal master regulators, and abrogated cell proliferation and invasion. Our results place ANXA2 at the apex of a regulatory cascade that determines glioblastoma mesenchymal transformation and validate aSICS as a general methodology to uncover regulators of cancer subtypes.

  3. Probabilistic modelling of chromatin code landscape reveals functional diversity of enhancer-like chromatin states

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Jian; Troyanskaya, Olga G.

    2016-01-01

    Interpreting the functional state of chromatin from the combinatorial binding patterns of chromatin factors, that is, the chromatin codes, is crucial for decoding the epigenetic state of the cell. Here we present a systematic map of Drosophila chromatin states derived from data-driven probabilistic modelling of dependencies between chromatin factors. Our model not only recapitulates enhancer-like chromatin states as indicated by widely used enhancer marks but also divides these states into three functionally distinct groups, of which only one specific group possesses active enhancer activity. Moreover, we discover a strong association between one specific enhancer state and RNA Polymerase II pausing, linking transcription regulatory potential and chromatin organization. We also observe that with the exception of long-intron genes, chromatin state transition positions in transcriptionally active genes align with an absolute distance to their corresponding transcription start site, regardless of gene length. Using our method, we provide a resource that helps elucidate the functional and spatial organization of the chromatin code landscape. PMID:26841971

  4. Generalized additive models reveal the intrinsic complexity of wood formation dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuny, Henri E; Rathgeber, Cyrille B K; Kiessé, Tristan Senga; Hartmann, Felix P; Barbeito, Ignacio; Fournier, Meriem

    2013-04-01

    The intra-annual dynamics of wood formation, which involves the passage of newly produced cells through three successive differentiation phases (division, enlargement, and wall thickening) to reach the final functional mature state, has traditionally been described in conifers as three delayed bell-shaped curves followed by an S-shaped curve. Here the classical view represented by the 'Gompertz function (GF) approach' was challenged using two novel approaches based on parametric generalized linear models (GLMs) and 'data-driven' generalized additive models (GAMs). These three approaches (GFs, GLMs, and GAMs) were used to describe seasonal changes in cell numbers in each of the xylem differentiation phases and to calculate the timing of cell development in three conifer species [Picea abies (L.), Pinus sylvestris L., and Abies alba Mill.]. GAMs outperformed GFs and GLMs in describing intra-annual wood formation dynamics, showing two left-skewed bell-shaped curves for division and enlargement, and a right-skewed bimodal curve for thickening. Cell residence times progressively decreased through the season for enlargement, whilst increasing late but rapidly for thickening. These patterns match changes in cell anatomical features within a tree ring, which allows the separation of earlywood and latewood into two distinct cell populations. A novel statistical approach is presented which renews our understanding of xylogenesis, a dynamic biological process in which the rate of cell production interplays with cell residence times in each developmental phase to create complex seasonal patterns.

  5. Active Tension Network model reveals an exotic mechanical state realized in epithelial tissues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noll, Nicholas; Mani, Madhav; Heemskerk, Idse; Streicha, Sebastian; Shraiman, Boris

    Mechanical interactions play a crucial role in epithelial morphogenesis, yet understanding the complex mechanisms through which stress and deformation affect cell behavior remains an open problem. Here we formulate and analyze the Active Tension Network (ATN) model, which assumes that mechanical balance of cells is dominated by cortical tension and introduces tension dependent active remodeling of the cortex. We find that ATNs exhibit unusual mechanical properties: i) ATN behaves as a fluid at short times, but at long times it supports external tension, like a solid; ii) its mechanical equilibrium state has extensive degeneracy associated with a discrete conformal - ''isogonal'' - deformation of cells. ATN model predicts a constraint on equilibrium cell geometry, which we demonstrate to hold in certain epithelial tissues. We further show that isogonal modes are observed in a fruit fly embryo, accounting for the striking variability of apical area of ventral cells and helping understand the early phase of gastrulation. Living matter realizes new and exotic mechanical states, understanding which helps understand biological phenomena.

  6. Computational models reveal a passive mechanism for cell migration in the crypt.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara-Jane Dunn

    Full Text Available Cell migration in the intestinal crypt is essential for the regular renewal of the epithelium, and the continued upward movement of cells is a key characteristic of healthy crypt dynamics. However, the driving force behind this migration is unknown. Possibilities include mitotic pressure, active movement driven by motility cues, or negative pressure arising from cell loss at the crypt collar. It is possible that a combination of factors together coordinate migration. Here, three different computational models are used to provide insight into the mechanisms that underpin cell movement in the crypt, by examining the consequence of eliminating cell division on cell movement. Computational simulations agree with existing experimental results, confirming that migration can continue in the absence of mitosis. Importantly, however, simulations allow us to infer mechanisms that are sufficient to generate cell movement, which is not possible through experimental observation alone. The results produced by the three models agree and suggest that cell loss due to apoptosis and extrusion at the crypt collar relieves cell compression below, allowing cells to expand and move upwards. This finding suggests that future experiments should focus on the role of apoptosis and cell extrusion in controlling cell migration in the crypt.

  7. Aiptasia sp. larvae as a model to reveal mechanisms of symbiont selection in cnidarians

    KAUST Repository

    Wolfowicz, Iliona

    2016-09-01

    Symbiosis, defined as the persistent association between two distinct species, is an evolutionary and ecologically critical phenomenon facilitating survival of both partners in diverse habitats. The biodiversity of coral reef ecosystems depends on a functional symbiosis with photosynthetic dinoflagellates of the highly diverse genus Symbiodinium, which reside in coral host cells and continuously support their nutrition. The mechanisms underlying symbiont selection to establish a stable endosymbiosis in non-symbiotic juvenile corals are unclear. Here we show for the first time that symbiont selection patterns for larvae of two Acropora coral species and the model anemone Aiptasia are similar under controlled conditions. We find that Aiptasia larvae distinguish between compatible and incompatible symbionts during uptake into the gastric cavity and phagocytosis. Using RNA-Seq, we identify a set of candidate genes potentially involved in symbiosis establishment. Together, our data complement existing molecular resources to mechanistically dissect symbiont phagocytosis in cnidarians under controlled conditions, thereby strengthening the role of Aiptasia larvae as a powerful model for cnidarian endosymbiosis establishment.

  8. Rodent models for studying empathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keum, Sehoon; Shin, Hee-Sup

    2016-11-01

    Empathy is the important capacity to recognize and share emotions with others. Recent evidence shows that rodents possess a remarkable affective sensitivity to the emotional state of others and that primitive forms of empathy exist in social lives of rodents. However, due to the ambiguous definitional boundaries between empathy, emotional contagion and other related terms, distinct components of empathic behaviors in rodents need to be clarified. Hence, we review recent experimental studies demonstrating that rodents are able to share emotions with others. Specifically, we highlight several behavioral models that examine different aspects of rodent empathic behaviors in response to the various distress of conspecifics. Experimental approaches using rodent behavioral models will help elucidate the neural circuitry of empathy and its neurochemical association. Integrating these findings with corresponding experiments in humans will ultimately provide novel insights into therapeutic interventions for mental disorders associated with empathy. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Model-based traction force microscopy reveals differential tension in cellular actin bundles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soiné, Jérôme R D; Brand, Christoph A; Stricker, Jonathan; Oakes, Patrick W; Gardel, Margaret L; Schwarz, Ulrich S

    2015-03-01

    Adherent cells use forces at the cell-substrate interface to sense and respond to the physical properties of their environment. These cell forces can be measured with traction force microscopy which inverts the equations of elasticity theory to calculate them from the deformations of soft polymer substrates. We introduce a new type of traction force microscopy that in contrast to traditional methods uses additional image data for cytoskeleton and adhesion structures and a biophysical model to improve the robustness of the inverse procedure and abolishes the need for regularization. We use this method to demonstrate that ventral stress fibers of U2OS-cells are typically under higher mechanical tension than dorsal stress fibers or transverse arcs.

  10. Model-based traction force microscopy reveals differential tension in cellular actin bundles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jérôme R D Soiné

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Adherent cells use forces at the cell-substrate interface to sense and respond to the physical properties of their environment. These cell forces can be measured with traction force microscopy which inverts the equations of elasticity theory to calculate them from the deformations of soft polymer substrates. We introduce a new type of traction force microscopy that in contrast to traditional methods uses additional image data for cytoskeleton and adhesion structures and a biophysical model to improve the robustness of the inverse procedure and abolishes the need for regularization. We use this method to demonstrate that ventral stress fibers of U2OS-cells are typically under higher mechanical tension than dorsal stress fibers or transverse arcs.

  11. Whole brain white matter changes revealed by multiple diffusion metrics in multiple sclerosis: A TBSS study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Yaou, E-mail: asiaeurope80@gmail.com [Department of Radiology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100053 (China); Duan, Yunyun, E-mail: xiaoyun81.love@163.com [Department of Radiology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100053 (China); He, Yong, E-mail: yong.h.he@gmail.com [State Key Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience and Learning, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China); Yu, Chunshui, E-mail: csyuster@gmail.com [Department of Radiology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100053 (China); Wang, Jun, E-mail: jun_wang@bnu.edu.cn [State Key Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience and Learning, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China); Huang, Jing, E-mail: sainthj@126.com [Department of Radiology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100053 (China); Ye, Jing, E-mail: jingye.2007@yahoo.com.cn [Department of Neurology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100053 (China); Parizel, Paul M., E-mail: paul.parizel@ua.ac.be [Department of Radiology, Antwerp University Hospital and University of Antwerp, Wilrijkstraat 10, 2650 Edegem, 8 Belgium (Belgium); Li, Kuncheng, E-mail: kunchengli55@gmail.com [Department of Radiology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100053 (China); Shu, Ni, E-mail: nshu55@gmail.com [State Key Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience and Learning, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China)

    2012-10-15

    Objective: To investigate whole brain white matter changes in multiple sclerosis (MS) by multiple diffusion indices, we examined patients with diffusion tensor imaging and utilized tract-based spatial statistics (TBSS) method to analyze the data. Methods: Forty-one relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) patients and 41 age- and gender-matched normal controls were included in this study. Diffusion weighted images were acquired by employing a single-shot echo planar imaging sequence on a 1.5 T MR scanner. Voxel-wise analyses of multiple diffusion metrics, including fractional anisotropy (FA), mean diffusivity (MD), axial diffusivity (AD) and radial diffusivity (RD) were performed with TBSS. Results: The MS patients had significantly decreased FA (9.11%), increased MD (8.26%), AD (3.48%) and RD (13.17%) in their white matter skeletons compared with the controls. Through TBSS analyses, we found abnormal diffusion changes in widespread white matter regions in MS patients. Specifically, decreased FA, increased MD and increased RD were involved in whole-brain white matter, while several regions exhibited increased AD. Furthermore, white matter regions with significant correlations between the diffusion metrics and the clinical variables (the EDSS scores, disease durations and white matter lesion loads) in MS patients were identified. Conclusion: Widespread white matter abnormalities were observed in MS patients revealed by multiple diffusion metrics. The diffusion changes and correlations with clinical variables were mainly attributed to increased RD, implying the predominant role of RD in reflecting the subtle pathological changes in MS.

  12. Structural Studies Reveal the Functional Modularity of the Scc2-Scc4 Cohesin Loader

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William C.H. Chao

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The remarkable accuracy of eukaryotic cell division is partly maintained by the cohesin complex acting as a molecular glue to prevent premature sister chromatid separation. The loading of cohesin onto chromosomes is catalyzed by the Scc2-Scc4 loader complex. Here, we report the crystal structure of Scc4 bound to the N terminus of Scc2 and show that Scc4 is a tetratricopeptide repeat (TPR superhelix. The Scc2 N terminus adopts an extended conformation and is entrapped by the core of the Scc4 superhelix. Electron microscopy (EM analysis reveals that the Scc2-Scc4 loader complex comprises three domains: a head, body, and hook. Deletion studies unambiguously assign the Scc2N-Scc4 as the globular head domain, whereas in vitro cohesin loading assays show that the central body and the hook domains are sufficient to catalyze cohesin loading onto circular DNA, but not chromatinized DNA in vivo, suggesting a possible role for Scc4 as a chromatin adaptor.

  13. Whole brain white matter changes revealed by multiple diffusion metrics in multiple sclerosis: A TBSS study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, Yaou; Duan, Yunyun; He, Yong; Yu, Chunshui; Wang, Jun; Huang, Jing; Ye, Jing; Parizel, Paul M.; Li, Kuncheng; Shu, Ni

    2012-01-01

    Objective: To investigate whole brain white matter changes in multiple sclerosis (MS) by multiple diffusion indices, we examined patients with diffusion tensor imaging and utilized tract-based spatial statistics (TBSS) method to analyze the data. Methods: Forty-one relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) patients and 41 age- and gender-matched normal controls were included in this study. Diffusion weighted images were acquired by employing a single-shot echo planar imaging sequence on a 1.5 T MR scanner. Voxel-wise analyses of multiple diffusion metrics, including fractional anisotropy (FA), mean diffusivity (MD), axial diffusivity (AD) and radial diffusivity (RD) were performed with TBSS. Results: The MS patients had significantly decreased FA (9.11%), increased MD (8.26%), AD (3.48%) and RD (13.17%) in their white matter skeletons compared with the controls. Through TBSS analyses, we found abnormal diffusion changes in widespread white matter regions in MS patients. Specifically, decreased FA, increased MD and increased RD were involved in whole-brain white matter, while several regions exhibited increased AD. Furthermore, white matter regions with significant correlations between the diffusion metrics and the clinical variables (the EDSS scores, disease durations and white matter lesion loads) in MS patients were identified. Conclusion: Widespread white matter abnormalities were observed in MS patients revealed by multiple diffusion metrics. The diffusion changes and correlations with clinical variables were mainly attributed to increased RD, implying the predominant role of RD in reflecting the subtle pathological changes in MS

  14. Studies of Catalytic Model Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holse, Christian

    of the Cu/ZnO nanoparticles is highly relevant to industrial methanol synthesis for which the direct interaction of Cu and ZnO nanocrystals synergistically boost the catalytic activity. The dynamical behavior of the nanoparticles under reducing and oxidizing environments were studied by means of ex situ X...... as the nanoparticles are reduced. The Cu/ZnO nanoparticles are tested on a  µ-reactor platform and prove to be active towards methanol synthesis, making it an excellent model system for further investigations into activity depended morphology changes....

  15. Dansgaard Oeschger Dynamics: Clearly Revealed in a Comprehensive Model of Glacial Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peltier, W. Richard; Vettoretti, Guido

    2017-04-01

    More than 30 years ago, Willi Dansgaard in Copenhagen and Hans Oeschger in Bern established the existence of millennium timescale oscillations in oxygen isotope stratigraphies from Greenland ice cores. This isotopic signal was interpreted as implying large amplitude variations in surface air temperature. Until the publication of Peltier and Vettoretti (2014, GRL) the prevalent view had been that this exclusively ice-age phenomenon, thought to be linked to variability in the strength of the Atlantic MOC, was considered to be forced by the episodic release of freshwater from the continental ice sheets, each oscillation requiring its own freshwater input. In Peltier and Vettoretti (2014) this phenomenon was recovered for the first time in a comprehensive model of glacial climate, specifically the CESM1 model of the NCAR laboratory. Attention was drawn to the fact that individual D-O oscillations, or Bond Cycle clusters of such oscillations, were inevitably preceded by individual Heinrich events. In Peltier and Vettoretti (2014) it was shown that, following the "spin-up" of CESM1 into the glacial state, with continental ice sheet volume held fixed, a sequence of nonlinear unforced and therefor "free" oscillations of the MOC occurred, following a sharp Heinrich event-like sharp suppression of MOC strength. All of the salient characteristics of the D-O process inferred on the basis of ice core evidence from both hemispheres were fully captured in these high (CMIP5) resolution simulations, namely: (i) the pulse shape of the individual oscillations characterized by an extremely rapid shift from cold stadial to warm interstadial conditions followed by a slow return to the stadial state, (ii) the peak-to-peak variations in Greenland surface air temperature of 10-15 degrees Centigrade during individual oscillations, (iii) the "bi-polar see saw" connection between this Northern Hemisphere process and that recorded in the EDML and WAIS Divide ice cores from Antarctica, (iv) the

  16. NURE uranium deposit model studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crew, M.E.

    1981-01-01

    The National Uranium Resource Evaluation (NURE) Program has sponsored uranium deposit model studies by Bendix Field Engineering Corporation (Bendix), the US Geological Survey (USGS), and numerous subcontractors. This paper deals only with models from the following six reports prepared by Samuel S. Adams and Associates: GJBX-1(81) - Geology and Recognition Criteria for Roll-Type Uranium Deposits in Continental Sandstones; GJBX-2(81) - Geology and Recognition Criteria for Uraniferous Humate Deposits, Grants Uranium Region, New Mexico; GJBX-3(81) - Geology and Recognition Criteria for Uranium Deposits of the Quartz-Pebble Conglomerate Type; GJBX-4(81) - Geology and Recognition Criteria for Sandstone Uranium Deposits in Mixed Fluvial-Shallow Marine Sedimentary Sequences, South Texas; GJBX-5(81) - Geology and Recognition Criteria for Veinlike Uranium Deposits of the Lower to Middle Proterozoic Unconformity and Strata-Related Types; GJBX-6(81) - Geology and Recognition Criteria for Sandstone Uranium Deposits of the Salt Wash Type, Colorado Plateau Province. A unique feature of these models is the development of recognition criteria in a systematic fashion, with a method for quantifying the various items. The recognition-criteria networks are used in this paper to illustrate the various types of deposits

  17. A zebrafish model of Roberts syndrome reveals that Esco2 depletion interferes with development by disrupting the cell cycle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maren Mönnich

    Full Text Available The human developmental diseases Cornelia de Lange Syndrome (CdLS and Roberts Syndrome (RBS are both caused by mutations in proteins responsible for sister chromatid cohesion. Cohesion is mediated by a multi-subunit complex called cohesin, which is loaded onto chromosomes by NIPBL. Once on chromosomes, cohesin binding is stabilized in S phase upon acetylation by ESCO2. CdLS is caused by heterozygous mutations in NIPBL or cohesin subunits SMC1A and SMC3, and RBS is caused by homozygous mutations in ESCO2. The genetic cause of both CdLS and RBS reside within the chromosome cohesion apparatus, and therefore they are collectively known as "cohesinopathies". However, the two syndromes have distinct phenotypes, with differences not explained by their shared ontology. In this study, we have used the zebrafish model to distinguish between developmental pathways downstream of cohesin itself, or its acetylase ESCO2. Esco2 depleted zebrafish embryos exhibit features that resemble RBS, including mitotic defects, craniofacial abnormalities and limb truncations. A microarray analysis of Esco2-depleted embryos revealed that different subsets of genes are regulated downstream of Esco2 when compared with cohesin subunit Rad21. Genes downstream of Rad21 showed significant enrichment for transcriptional regulators, while Esco2-regulated genes were more likely to be involved the cell cycle or apoptosis. RNA in situ hybridization showed that runx1, which is spatiotemporally regulated by cohesin, is expressed normally in Esco2-depleted embryos. Furthermore, myca, which is downregulated in rad21 mutants, is upregulated in Esco2-depleted embryos. High levels of cell death contributed to the morphology of Esco2-depleted embryos without affecting specific developmental pathways. We propose that cell proliferation defects and apoptosis could be the primary cause of the features of RBS. Our results show that mutations in different elements of the cohesion apparatus have

  18. Fortune Favours the Bold: An Agent-Based Model Reveals Adaptive Advantages of Overconfidence in War

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Dominic D. P.; Weidmann, Nils B.; Cederman, Lars-Erik

    2011-01-01

    Overconfidence has long been considered a cause of war. Like other decision-making biases, overconfidence seems detrimental because it increases the frequency and costs of fighting. However, evolutionary biologists have proposed that overconfidence may also confer adaptive advantages: increasing ambition, resolve, persistence, bluffing opponents, and winning net payoffs from risky opportunities despite occasional failures. We report the results of an agent-based model of inter-state conflict, which allows us to evaluate the performance of different strategies in competition with each other. Counter-intuitively, we find that overconfident states predominate in the population at the expense of unbiased or underconfident states. Overconfident states win because: (1) they are more likely to accumulate resources from frequent attempts at conquest; (2) they are more likely to gang up on weak states, forcing victims to split their defences; and (3) when the decision threshold for attacking requires an overwhelming asymmetry of power, unbiased and underconfident states shirk many conflicts they are actually likely to win. These “adaptive advantages” of overconfidence may, via selection effects, learning, or evolved psychology, have spread and become entrenched among modern states, organizations and decision-makers. This would help to explain the frequent association of overconfidence and war, even if it no longer brings benefits today. PMID:21731627

  19. Revealing chemophoric sites in organophosphorus insecticides through the MIA-QSPR modeling of soil sorption data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daré, Joyce K; Silva, Cristina F; Freitas, Matheus P

    2017-10-01

    Soil sorption of insecticides employed in agriculture is an important parameter to probe the environmental fate of organic chemicals. Therefore, methods for the prediction of soil sorption of new agrochemical candidates, as well as for the rationalization of the molecular characteristics responsible for a given sorption profile, are extremely beneficial for the environment. A quantitative structure-property relationship method based on chemical structure images as molecular descriptors provided a reliable model for the soil sorption prediction of 24 widely used organophosphorus insecticides. By means of contour maps obtained from the partial least squares regression coefficients and the variable importance in projection scores, key molecular moieties were targeted for possible structural modification, in order to obtain novel and more environmentally friendly insecticide candidates. The image-based descriptors applied encode molecular arrangement, atoms connectivity, groups size, and polarity; consequently, the findings in this work cannot be achieved by a simple relationship with hydrophobicity, usually described by the octanol-water partition coefficient. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Can representational trajectory reveal the nature of an internal model of gravity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Sá Teixeira, Nuno; Hecht, Heiko

    2014-05-01

    The memory for the vanishing location of a horizontally moving target is usually displaced forward in the direction of motion (representational momentum) and downward in the direction of gravity (representational gravity). Moreover, this downward displacement has been shown to increase with time (representational trajectory). However, the degree to which different kinematic events change the temporal profile of these displacements remains to be determined. The present article attempts to fill this gap. In the first experiment, we replicate the finding that representational momentum for downward-moving targets is bigger than for upward motions, showing, moreover, that it increases rapidly during the first 300 ms, stabilizing afterward. This temporal profile, but not the increased error for descending targets, is shown to be disrupted when eye movements are not allowed. In the second experiment, we show that the downward drift with time emerges even for static targets. Finally, in the third experiment, we report an increased error for upward-moving targets, as compared with downward movements, when the display is compatible with a downward ego-motion by including vection cues. Thus, the errors in the direction of gravity are compatible with the perceived event and do not merely reflect a retinotopic bias. Overall, these results provide further evidence for an internal model of gravity in the visual representational system.

  1. Aerodynamic modelling of a Cretaceous bird reveals thermal soaring capabilities during early avian evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrano, Francisco José; Chiappe, Luis María

    2017-07-01

    Several flight modes are thought to have evolved during the early evolution of birds. Here, we use a combination of computational modelling and morphofunctional analyses to infer the flight properties of the raven-sized, Early Cretaceous bird Sapeornis chaoyangensis -a likely candidate to have evolved soaring capabilities. Specifically, drawing information from (i) mechanical inferences of the deltopectoral crest of the humerus, (ii) wing shape (i.e. aspect ratio), (iii) estimations of power margin (i.e. difference between power required for flight and available power from muscles), (iv) gliding behaviour (i.e. forward speed and sinking speed), and (v) palaeobiological evidence, we conclude that S. chaoyangensis was a thermal soarer with an ecology similar to that of living South American screamers. Our results indicate that as early as 125 Ma, some birds evolved the morphological and aerodynamic requirements for soaring on continental thermals, a conclusion that highlights the degree of ecological, functional and behavioural diversity that resulted from the first major evolutionary radiation of birds. © 2017 The Author(s).

  2. Endoglin: a novel target for therapeutic intervention in acute leukemias revealed in xenograft mouse models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dourado, Keina M C; Baik, June; Oliveira, Vanessa K P; Beltrame, Miriam; Yamamoto, Ami; Theuer, Charles P; Figueiredo, Camila A V; Verneris, Michael R; Perlingeiro, Rita C R

    2017-05-04

    Endoglin (CD105), a receptor of the transforming growth factor-β superfamily, has been reported to identify functional long-term repopulating hematopoietic stem cells, and has been detected in certain subtypes of acute leukemias. Whether this receptor plays a functional role in leukemogenesis remains unknown. We identified endoglin expression on the majority of blasts from patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and acute B-lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL). Using a xenograft model, we find that CD105 + blasts are endowed with superior leukemogenic activity compared with the CD105 - population. We test the effect of targeting this receptor using the monoclonal antibody TRC105, and find that in AML, TRC105 prevented the engraftment of primary AML blasts and inhibited leukemia progression following disease establishment, but in B-ALL, TRC105 alone was ineffective due to the shedding of soluble CD105. However, in both B-ALL and AML, TRC105 synergized with reduced intensity myeloablation to inhibit leukemogenesis, indicating that TRC105 may represent a novel therapeutic option for B-ALL and AML. © 2017 by The American Society of Hematology.

  3. Genetic dissection in a mouse model reveals interactions between carotenoids and lipid metabolism[S

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palczewski, Grzegorz; Widjaja-Adhi, M. Airanthi K.; Amengual, Jaume; Golczak, Marcin; von Lintig, Johannes

    2016-01-01

    Carotenoids affect a rich variety of physiological functions in nature and are beneficial for human health. However, knowledge about their biological action and the consequences of their dietary accumulation in mammals is limited. Progress in this research field is limited by the expeditious metabolism of carotenoids in rodents and the confounding production of apocarotenoid signaling molecules. Herein, we established a mouse model lacking the enzymes responsible for carotenoid catabolism and apocarotenoid production, fed on either a β-carotene- or a zeaxanthin-enriched diet. Applying a genome wide microarray analysis, we assessed the effects of the parent carotenoids on the liver transcriptome. Our analysis documented changes in pathways for liver lipid metabolism and mitochondrial respiration. We biochemically defined these effects, and observed that β-carotene accumulation resulted in an elevation of liver triglycerides and liver cholesterol, while zeaxanthin accumulation increased serum cholesterol levels. We further show that carotenoids were predominantly transported within HDL particles in the serum of mice. Finally, we provide evidence that carotenoid accumulation influenced whole-body respiration and energy expenditure. Thus, we observed that accumulation of parent carotenoids interacts with lipid metabolism and that structurally related carotenoids display distinct biological functions in mammals. PMID:27389691

  4. Genetic dissection in a mouse model reveals interactions between carotenoids and lipid metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palczewski, Grzegorz; Widjaja-Adhi, M Airanthi K; Amengual, Jaume; Golczak, Marcin; von Lintig, Johannes

    2016-09-01

    Carotenoids affect a rich variety of physiological functions in nature and are beneficial for human health. However, knowledge about their biological action and the consequences of their dietary accumulation in mammals is limited. Progress in this research field is limited by the expeditious metabolism of carotenoids in rodents and the confounding production of apocarotenoid signaling molecules. Herein, we established a mouse model lacking the enzymes responsible for carotenoid catabolism and apocarotenoid production, fed on either a β-carotene- or a zeaxanthin-enriched diet. Applying a genome wide microarray analysis, we assessed the effects of the parent carotenoids on the liver transcriptome. Our analysis documented changes in pathways for liver lipid metabolism and mitochondrial respiration. We biochemically defined these effects, and observed that β-carotene accumulation resulted in an elevation of liver triglycerides and liver cholesterol, while zeaxanthin accumulation increased serum cholesterol levels. We further show that carotenoids were predominantly transported within HDL particles in the serum of mice. Finally, we provide evidence that carotenoid accumulation influenced whole-body respiration and energy expenditure. Thus, we observed that accumulation of parent carotenoids interacts with lipid metabolism and that structurally related carotenoids display distinct biological functions in mammals. Copyright © 2016 by the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  5. Systems analysis of eleven rodent disease models reveals an inflammatome signature and key drivers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, I-Ming; Zhang, Bin; Yang, Xia; Zhu, Jun; Stepaniants, Serguei; Zhang, Chunsheng; Meng, Qingying; Peters, Mette; He, Yudong; Ni, Chester; Slipetz, Deborah; Crackower, Michael A; Houshyar, Hani; Tan, Christopher M; Asante-Appiah, Ernest; O'Neill, Gary; Luo, Mingjuan Jane; Thieringer, Rolf; Yuan, Jeffrey; Chiu, Chi-Sung; Lum, Pek Yee; Lamb, John; Boie, Yves; Wilkinson, Hilary A; Schadt, Eric E; Dai, Hongyue; Roberts, Christopher

    2012-07-17

    Common inflammatome gene signatures as well as disease-specific signatures were identified by analyzing 12 expression profiling data sets derived from 9 different tissues isolated from 11 rodent inflammatory disease models. The inflammatome signature significantly overlaps with known drug targets and co-expressed gene modules linked to metabolic disorders and cancer. A large proportion of genes in this signature are tightly connected in tissue-specific Bayesian networks (BNs) built from multiple independent mouse and human cohorts. Both the inflammatome signature and the corresponding consensus BNs are highly enriched for immune response-related genes supported as causal for adiposity, adipokine, diabetes, aortic lesion, bone, muscle, and cholesterol traits, suggesting the causal nature of the inflammatome for a variety of diseases. Integration of this inflammatome signature with the BNs uncovered 151 key drivers that appeared to be more biologically important than the non-drivers in terms of their impact on disease phenotypes. The identification of this inflammatome signature, its network architecture, and key drivers not only highlights the shared etiology but also pinpoints potential targets for intervention of various common diseases.

  6. A whole-body model for glycogen regulation reveals a critical role for substrate cycling in maintaining blood glucose homeostasis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ke Xu

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Timely, and sometimes rapid, metabolic adaptation to changes in food supply is critical for survival as an organism moves from the fasted to the fed state, and vice versa. These transitions necessitate major metabolic changes to maintain energy homeostasis as the source of blood glucose moves away from ingested carbohydrates, through hepatic glycogen stores, towards gluconeogenesis. The integration of hepatic glycogen regulation with extra-hepatic energetics is a key aspect of these adaptive mechanisms. Here we use computational modeling to explore hepatic glycogen regulation under fed and fasting conditions in the context of a whole-body model. The model was validated against previous experimental results concerning glycogen phosphorylase a (active and glycogen synthase a dynamics. The model qualitatively reproduced physiological changes that occur during transition from the fed to the fasted state. Analysis of the model reveals a critical role for the inhibition of glycogen synthase phosphatase by glycogen phosphorylase a. This negative regulation leads to high levels of glycogen synthase activity during fasting conditions, which in turn increases substrate (futile cycling, priming the system for a rapid response once an external source of glucose is restored. This work demonstrates that a mechanistic understanding of the design principles used by metabolic control circuits to maintain homeostasis can benefit from the incorporation of mathematical descriptions of these networks into "whole-body" contextual models that mimic in vivo conditions.

  7. A large study reveals no Association between APOE and Parkinson’s disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Federoff, Monica; Jimenez-Rolando, Belen; Nalls, Michael A; Singleton, Andrew B

    2012-01-01

    Background Research focusing on the role of APOE in Parkinson’s disease (PD) has been largely inconclusive, creating a broad discrepancy in association studies. Objective To elucidate the role of APOE alleles in PD risk by studying a large sample size and controlling for population substructure. Patients and Methods In total, 3465 case and control samples were genotyped, obtained from the NINDS Neurogenetics repository. Results No significant differences in ε4 dosages exist between PD cases and controls. The frequency of ε4 carriers differed slightly between cases and controls at 24% (580/2412) and 26% (270/1053), respectively. Likewise, mean dosages of APOE ε2 were not significantly different between cases and controls. APOE ε2 carriers were observed at a frequency of 13.6% (329/2412) among cases and 15% (158/1053) among controls. Logistic regression models evaluating PD as possibly associated with ε4 or ε2 carrier status and allele dosages yielded no significant results. The mean MMSE score among all PD cases was 28.35 (SD = 2.58) and memory loss was reported in only 11.9% (105/879) of cases. Linear regression models comparing MMSE scores as predicted by ε4 or ε2 carrier status and allele dosages were not significant. Conclusions There is no association between APOE epsilon alleles and Parkinson’s disease. PMID:22349451

  8. Diversity and distribution of nuclease bacteriocins in bacterial genomes revealed using Hidden Markov Models.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Connor Sharp

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Bacteria exploit an arsenal of antimicrobial peptides and proteins to compete with each other. Three main competition systems have been described: type six secretion systems (T6SS; contact dependent inhibition (CDI; and bacteriocins. Unlike T6SS and CDI systems, bacteriocins do not require contact between bacteria but are diffusible toxins released into the environment. Identified almost a century ago, our understanding of bacteriocin distribution and prevalence in bacterial populations remains poor. In the case of protein bacteriocins, this is because of high levels of sequence diversity and difficulties in distinguishing their killing domains from those of other competition systems. Here, we develop a robust bioinformatics pipeline exploiting Hidden Markov Models for the identification of nuclease bacteriocins (NBs in bacteria of which, to-date, only a handful are known. NBs are large (>60 kDa toxins that target nucleic acids (DNA, tRNA or rRNA in the cytoplasm of susceptible bacteria, usually closely related to the producing organism. We identified >3000 NB genes located on plasmids or on the chromosome from 53 bacterial species distributed across different ecological niches, including human, animals, plants, and the environment. A newly identified NB predicted to be specific for Pseudomonas aeruginosa (pyocin Sn was produced and shown to kill P. aeruginosa thereby validating our pipeline. Intriguingly, while the genes encoding the machinery needed for NB translocation across the cell envelope are widespread in Gram-negative bacteria, NBs are found exclusively in γ-proteobacteria. Similarity network analysis demonstrated that NBs fall into eight groups each with a distinct arrangement of protein domains involved in import. The only structural feature conserved across all groups was a sequence motif critical for cell-killing that is generally not found in bacteriocins targeting the periplasm, implying a specific role in translocating the

  9. 3D gravity modelling reveals off-axis crustal thickness variations along the western Gakkel Ridge (Arctic Ocean)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt-Aursch, Mechita C.; Jokat, Wilfried

    2016-11-01

    Near-orthogonal ultra-slow (13.3 mm yr- 1 to 6.5 mm yr- 1) sea floor spreading in the absence of large transform faults make the Arctic Gakkel Ridge ideally suited for the study of magmatic processes. To enable this, we generated a three-dimensional gravity model of crustal thickness over the ridge and parts of the adjacent Nansen and Amundsen basins west of 65° E. The model shows that oceanic crust accreted prior to chrons C5/C6 is generally very thin (1-3 km). Magnetic anomalies over this thin crust are highly variable both parallel and perpendicular to the ridge axis. This is the result of amagmatic or weakly volcanic spreading that started with the opening of the basins 56 Ma ago. The separation of Greenland from Svalbard at chron C5/C6 led to the inflow of North Atlantic mantle into the western Eurasia Basin leading to a change in the mantle convection system and the establishment of a magmatic dichotomy along the Gakkel Ridge. Robust magmatism was established in the Western Volcanic Zone (6° 30‧ W-3° 30‧ E), leading to creation of a 6.6 km thick igneous crust, characterized by a strong positive axial magnetic anomaly, numerous volcanic cones, and widespread thick mid-ocean ridge basalts. The transition to the neighbouring Sparsely Magmatic (3° 30‧ E-29° E) and Eastern Volcanic (29° E-85° E) zones is sharp. Peridotites cover the central valley and the inner rift flanks, the central magnetic anomaly vanishes and crustal thickness decreases to 1-4 km. Transverse basement ridges, extending for as much as 100 km into the adjacent basins, intersect the central valley. Although partly of tectonic origin, the transverse ridges are also an expression of long-living magmatic centres, as revealed by increased magnetic anomaly intensities and local thickening of the crust to values as great as 5.9 km.

  10. Mitogenomics and phylogenomics reveal priapulid worms as extant models of the ancestral Ecdysozoan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webster, Bonnie L; Copley, Richard R; Jenner, Ronald A; Mackenzie-Dodds, Jacqueline A; Bourlat, Sarah J; Rota-Stabelli, Omar; Littlewood, D T J; Telford, Maximilian J

    2006-01-01

    Research into arthropod evolution is hampered by the derived nature and rapid evolution of the best-studied out-group: the nematodes. We consider priapulids as an alternative out-group. Priapulids are a small phylum of bottom-dwelling marine worms; their tubular body with spiny proboscis or introvert has changed little over 520 million years and recognizable priapulids are common among exceptionally preserved Cambrian fossils. Using the complete mitochondrial genome and 42 nuclear genes from Priapulus caudatus, we show that priapulids are slowly evolving ecdysozoans; almost all these priapulid genes have evolved more slowly than nematode orthologs and the priapulid mitochondrial gene order may be unchanged since the Cambrian. Considering their primitive bodyplan and embryology and the great conservation of both nuclear and mitochondrial genomes, priapulids may deserve the popular epithet of "living fossil." Their study is likely to yield significant new insights into the early evolution of the Ecdysozoa and the origins of the arthropods and their kin as well as aiding inference of the morphology of ancestral Ecdysozoa and Bilateria and their genomes.

  11. Carbon nanotubes modification with polyaniline: Revealing mechanism by mathematical modeling method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rukhov, Artem; Dyachkova, Tatyana; Anosova, Irina; Tugolukov, Evgeniy; Burakova, Elena; Galunin, Evgeniy

    2017-11-01

    The process of carboxylated carbon nanotubes (CNT) modification with polyaniline (PANI) has been studied by molecular dynamics methods. It is shown that the formation of dimers and phenazine oligomeric products takes place on the surface of CNT, after which desorption takes place, and the growth of macromolecular PANI chains occurs in the reaction mass bulk. Carboxylate groups have an orienting effect on the arrangement of PANI molecules in the formation of the modifying layer, therefore, the properties of synthesized composites are affected not only by the presence of functional groups on the CNT surface, but also by the degree of functionalization. An approach is proposed to determine the degree of preliminary functionalization of CNT by carboxylate groups, which ensures the formation of the uniform PANI coating and the highest electrical capacity and conductivity of the composites.

  12. The study of fkbp and ubiquitin reveals interesting aspects of Artemia stress history.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maniatsi, Stefania; Farmaki, Theodora; Abatzopoulos, Theodore J

    2015-08-01

    Research on stress responses in animals has increased greatly during the last decades. Though most studies focus on the cellular and molecular bases of the stress response mechanisms, the ecological and evolutionary aspects of stress responses gain more and more interest. Here, we use species and parthenogenetic strains of the genus Artemia, an extremophile model organism, to study, for the first time, a protein well known for its chaperone activity and its involvement in stress responses. More specifically, transcription and protein accumulation of an FK506-Binding Protein (FKBP) homologue were investigated under heat and salt stresses. Additionally, the mRNA levels of ubiquitin, a heat-inducible protein related to the proteasomal pathway, were quantitated under these conditions. Biochemical and phylogenetic analyses showed that the studied FKBP orthologue is a typical representative of the family that clusters with other crustacean sequences. The expression was increased in both fkbp and ubiquitin genes after salt and heat stresses. However, our results in combination with the fact that Artemia species and parthenogenetic strains, selected for this study, exhibit different heat or salt tolerance provide useful hints about the evolutionary significance of FKBP and ubiquitin. Regarding FKBP, mRNA expression and protein accumulation seem to depend on the environmental conditions and the evolutionary history of each Artemia population while ubiquitin has a clear and more conserved role under heat shock. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Comparative study of human mitochondrial proteome reveals extensive protein subcellular relocalization after gene duplications

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    Huang Yong

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Gene and genome duplication is the principle creative force in evolution. Recently, protein subcellular relocalization, or neolocalization was proposed as one of the mechanisms responsible for the retention of duplicated genes. This hypothesis received support from the analysis of yeast genomes, but has not been tested thoroughly on animal genomes. In order to evaluate the importance of subcellular relocalizations for retention of duplicated genes in animal genomes, we systematically analyzed nuclear encoded mitochondrial proteins in the human genome by reconstructing phylogenies of mitochondrial multigene families. Results The 456 human mitochondrial proteins selected for this study were clustered into 305 gene families including 92 multigene families. Among the multigene families, 59 (64% consisted of both mitochondrial and cytosolic (non-mitochondrial proteins (mt-cy families while the remaining 33 (36% were composed of mitochondrial proteins (mt-mt families. Phylogenetic analyses of mt-cy families revealed three different scenarios of their neolocalization following gene duplication: 1 relocalization from mitochondria to cytosol, 2 from cytosol to mitochondria and 3 multiple subcellular relocalizations. The neolocalizations were most commonly enabled by the gain or loss of N-terminal mitochondrial targeting signals. The majority of detected subcellular relocalization events occurred early in animal evolution, preceding the evolution of tetrapods. Mt-mt protein families showed a somewhat different pattern, where gene duplication occurred more evenly in time. However, for both types of protein families, most duplication events appear to roughly coincide with two rounds of genome duplications early in vertebrate evolution. Finally, we evaluated the effects of inaccurate and incomplete annotation of mitochondrial proteins and found that our conclusion of the importance of subcellular relocalization after gene duplication on

  14. Impact of community-acquired paediatric rotavirus gastroenteritis on family life: data from the REVEAL study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Talayero José MP

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Rotavirus is the leading cause of acute gastroenteritis (AGE and the most frequent cause of severe diarrhoea in children aged less than 5 years. Although the epidemiology of rotavirus gastroenteritis (RVGE is well documented, there are few data on the impact of RVGE on the families of affected children. Methods Data associated with the burden of RVGE, including number of working days lost, levels of parental stress, the need for alternative childcare arrangements and additional nappies used, were extracted from questionnaires completed by parents of children participating in a prospective, multicentre, observational study (Rotavirus gastroenteritis Epidemiology and Viral types in Europe Accounting for Losses in public health and society, REVEAL, conducted during 2004-2005 in selected areas of Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom to estimate the incidence of RVGE in children aged less than 5 years seeking medical care as a result of AGE. Results 1102 children with RVGE were included in the present analysis. The proportion of RVGE cases that required at least one parent or other person to be absent from work was 39%-91% in the hospital setting, 44%-64% in the emergency department, and 20%-64% in primary care. Self-reported levels of parental stress were generally high (mean stress levels, ≥ 5 on a 10-point visual analogue scale. Additional childcare arrangements were required in up to 21% of RVGE episodes. The mean number of nappies used per day during RVGE episodes was approximately double that used when the child was not ill. Conclusions Paediatric RVGE cases cause disruption to families and parental stress. The burden of RVGE on children and their families could be substantially reduced by routine rotavirus vaccination of infants.

  15. Numerous risk factors for Helicobacter pylori antibiotic resistance revealed by extended anamnesis: a Bulgarian study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyanova, Lyudmila; Ilieva, Juliana; Gergova, Galina; Davidkov, Lubomir; Spassova, Zoya; Kamburov, Victor; Katsarov, Nikolai; Mitov, Ivan

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study was to assess risk factors for primary Helicobacter pylori antibiotic resistance by an extended anamnesis. In total, 519 H. pylori strains from untreated symptomatic adults who answered a questionnaire were evaluated. Strain susceptibility was assessed by a breakpoint susceptibility test. Primary resistance rates were 29.5 % for metronidazole, 17.9 % for clarithromycin, 7.3 % for metronidazole+clarithromycin, 4.0 % for tetracycline and 10.8 % for ciprofloxacin. On multivariate analysis, younger (≤65 years) age was an independent predictor for metronidazole resistance. To our knowledge, for the first time, being a member of the health-care profession was revealed as a risk factor for H. pylori resistance to metronidazole and both metronidazole and clarithromycin. Respiratory and urinary tract infections were independent predictors of clarithromycin and ciprofloxacin resistance, respectively. The presence of co-infections was an independent risk factor for clarithromycin, metronidazole and ciprofloxacin resistance. Surprisingly, female sex was the only predictor for tetracycline resistance. The antibiotic resistance rates were not associated with disease type, place of residence, birthplace, educational level, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug or proton pump inhibitor use, smoking or dietary factors, such as consumption of coffee, yogurt, green tea, raw garlic, raw onion, honey or meat. There was a trend for higher metronidazole resistance in strains from diabetic patients. In conclusion, the extended anamnesis of H. pylori-positive patients should include data on patient age, sex, whether they are in the health-care profession, co-infections and possibly diabetes to improve the choice of empiric therapy. Tailored treatment based on the extended anamnesis is suggested, and susceptibility testing of the strains is recommended for patients at risk for antibiotic resistance, especially to clarithromycin, fluoroquinolones or both metronidazole

  16. Transcriptome sequencing of two phenotypic mosaic Eucalyptus trees reveals large scale transcriptome re-modelling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda Padovan

    Full Text Available Phenotypic mosaic trees offer an ideal system for studying differential gene expression. We have investigated two mosaic eucalypt trees from two closely related species (Eucalyptus melliodora and E. sideroxylon, which each support two types of leaves: one part of the canopy is resistant to insect herbivory and the remaining leaves are susceptible. Driving this ecological distinction are differences in plant secondary metabolites. We used these phenotypic mosaics to investigate genome wide patterns of foliar gene expression with the aim of identifying patterns of differential gene expression and the somatic mutation(s that lead to this phenotypic mosaicism. We sequenced the mRNA pool from leaves of the resistant and susceptible ecotypes from both mosaic eucalypts using the Illumina HiSeq 2000 platform. We found large differences in pathway regulation and gene expression between the ecotypes of each mosaic. The expression of the genes in the MVA and MEP pathways is reflected by variation in leaf chemistry, however this is not the case for the terpene synthases. Apart from the terpene biosynthetic pathway, there are several other metabolic pathways that are differentially regulated between the two ecotypes, suggesting there is much more phenotypic diversity than has been described. Despite the close relationship between the two species, they show large differences in the global patterns of gene and pathway regulation.

  17. Saltstone SDU6 Modeling Study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Si Y.; Hyun, Sinjae

    2013-01-01

    A new disposal unit, designated as Saltstone Disposal Unit 6 (SDU6), is being designed for support of site accelerated closure goals and salt waste projections identified in the new Liquid Waste System Plan. The unit is a cylindrical disposal cell of 375 ft in diameter and 43 ft in height, and it has a minimum 30 million gallons of capacity. SRNL was requested to evaluate the impact of an increased grout placement height on the flow patterns radially spread on the floor and to determine whether grout quality is impacted by the height. The primary goals of the work are to develop the baseline Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) model and to perform the evaluations for the flow patterns of grout material in SDU6 as a function of elevation of grout discharge port and grout rheology. Two transient grout models have been developed by taking a three-dimensional multiphase CFD approach to estimate the domain size of the grout materials radially spread on the facility floor and to perform the sensitivity analysis with respect to the baseline design and operating conditions such as elevation height of the discharge port and fresh grout properties. For the CFD modeling calculations, air-grout Volume of Fluid (VOF) method combined with Bingham plastic and time-dependent grout models were used for examining the impact of fluid spread performance for the initial baseline configurations and to evaluate the impact of grout pouring height on grout quality. The grout quality was estimated in terms of the air volume fraction for the grout layer formed on the SDU6 floor, resulting in the change of grout density. The study results should be considered as preliminary scoping analyses since benchmarking analysis is not included in this task scope. Transient analyses with the Bingham plastic model were performed with the FLUENTTM code on the high performance parallel computing platform in SRNL. The analysis coupled with a transient grout aging model was performed by using ANSYS-CFX code

  18. Catchment tracers reveal discharge, recharge and sources of groundwater-borne pollutants in a novel lake modelling approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kristensen, Emil; Madsen-Østerbye, Mikkel; Massicotte, Philippe; Pedersen, Ole; Markager, Stiig; Kragh, Theis

    2018-02-01

    Groundwater-borne contaminants such as nutrients, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), coloured dissolved organic matter (CDOM) and pesticides can have an impact the biological quality of lakes. The sources of pollutants can, however, be difficult to identify due to high heterogeneity in groundwater flow patterns. This study presents a novel approach for fast hydrological surveys of small groundwater-fed lakes using multiple groundwater-borne tracers. Water samples were collected from the lake and temporary groundwater wells, installed every 50 m within a distance of 5-45 m to the shore, were analysed for tracer concentrations of CDOM, DOC, total dissolved nitrogen (TDN, groundwater only), total nitrogen (TN, lake only), total dissolved phosphorus (TDP, groundwater only), total phosphorus (TP, lake only), δ18O / δ16O isotope ratios and fluorescent dissolved organic matter (FDOM) components derived from parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC). The isolation of groundwater recharge areas was based on δ18O measurements and areas with a high groundwater recharge rate were identified using a microbially influenced FDOM component. Groundwater discharge sites and the fractions of water delivered from the individual sites were isolated with the Community Assembly via Trait Selection model (CATS). The CATS model utilized tracer measurements of TDP, TDN, DOC and CDOM from the groundwater samples and related these to the tracer measurements of TN, TP, DOC and CDOM in the lake. A direct comparison between the lake and the inflowing groundwater was possible as degradation rates of the tracers in the lake were taken into account and related to a range of water retention times (WRTs) of the lake (0.25-3.5 years in 0.25-year increments). These estimations showed that WRTs above 2 years required a higher tracer concentration of inflowing water than found in any of the groundwater wells around the lake. From the estimations of inflowing tracer concentration, the CATS model isolated

  19. Spatial guilds in the Serengeti food web revealed by a Bayesian group model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edward B Baskerville

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Food webs, networks of feeding relationships in an ecosystem, provide fundamental insights into mechanisms that determine ecosystem stability and persistence. A standard approach in food-web analysis, and network analysis in general, has been to identify compartments, or modules, defined by many links within compartments and few links between them. This approach can identify large habitat boundaries in the network but may fail to identify other important structures. Empirical analyses of food webs have been further limited by low-resolution data for primary producers. In this paper, we present a Bayesian computational method for identifying group structure using a flexible definition that can describe both functional trophic roles and standard compartments. We apply this method to a newly compiled plant-mammal food web from the Serengeti ecosystem that includes high taxonomic resolution at the plant level, allowing a simultaneous examination of the signature of both habitat and trophic roles in network structure. We find that groups at the plant level reflect habitat structure, coupled at higher trophic levels by groups of herbivores, which are in turn coupled by carnivore groups. Thus the group structure of the Serengeti web represents a mixture of trophic guild structure and spatial pattern, in contrast to the standard compartments typically identified. The network topology supports recent ideas on spatial coupling and energy channels in ecosystems that have been proposed as important for persistence. Furthermore, our Bayesian approach provides a powerful, flexible framework for the study of network structure, and we believe it will prove instrumental in a variety of biological contexts.

  20. Spatial guilds in the Serengeti food web revealed by a Bayesian group model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baskerville, Edward B; Dobson, Andy P; Bedford, Trevor; Allesina, Stefano; Anderson, T Michael; Pascual, Mercedes

    2011-12-01

    Food webs, networks of feeding relationships in an ecosystem, provide fundamental insights into mechanisms that determine ecosystem stability and persistence. A standard approach in food-web analysis, and network analysis in general, has been to identify compartments, or modules, defined by many links within compartments and few links between them. This approach can identify large habitat boundaries in the network but may fail to identify other important structures. Empirical analyses of food webs have been further limited by low-resolution data for primary producers. In this paper, we present a Bayesian computational method for identifying group structure using a flexible definition that can describe both functional trophic roles and standard compartments. We apply this method to a newly compiled plant-mammal food web from the Serengeti ecosystem that includes high taxonomic resolution at the plant level, allowing a simultaneous examination of the signature of both habitat and trophic roles in network structure. We find that groups at the plant level reflect habitat structure, coupled at higher trophic levels by groups of herbivores, which are in turn coupled by carnivore groups. Thus the group structure of the Serengeti web represents a mixture of trophic guild structure and spatial pattern, in contrast to the standard compartments typically identified. The network topology supports recent ideas on spatial coupling and energy channels in ecosystems that have been proposed as important for persistence. Furthermore, our Bayesian approach provides a powerful, flexible framework for the study of network structure, and we believe it will prove instrumental in a variety of biological contexts.

  1. Global Proteomic Analysis Reveals an Exclusive Role of Thylakoid Membranes in Bioenergetics of a Model Cyanobacterium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liberton, Michelle; Saha, Rajib; Jacobs, Jon M.; Nguyen, Amelia Y.; Gritsenko, Marina A.; Smith, Richard D.; Koppenaal, David W.; Pakrasi, Himadri B.

    2016-04-07

    Cyanobacteria are photosynthetic microbes with highly differentiated membrane systems. These organisms contain an outer membrane, plasma membrane, and an internal system of thylakoid membranes where the photosynthetic and respiratory machinery are found. This existence of compartmentalization and differentiation of membrane systems poses a number of challenges for cyanobacterial cells in terms of organization and distribution of proteins to the correct membrane system. Proteomics studies have long sought to identify the components of the different membrane systems, and to date about 450 different proteins have been attributed to either the plasma membrane or thylakoid membrane. Given the complexity of these membranes, many more proteins remain to be identified in these membrane systems, and a comprehensive catalog of plasma membrane and thylakoid membrane proteins is needed. Here we describe the identification of 635 proteins in Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 by quantitative iTRAQ isobaric labeling; of these, 459 proteins were localized to the plasma membrane and 176 were localized to the thylakoid membrane. Surprisingly, we found over 2.5 times the number of unique proteins identified in the plasma membrane compared to the thylakoid membrane. This suggests that the protein composition of the thylakoid membrane is more homogeneous than the plasma membrane, consistent with the role of the plasma membrane in diverse cellular processes including protein trafficking and nutrient import, compared to a more specialized role for the thylakoid membrane in cellular energetics. Overall, the protein composition of the Synechocystis 6803 plasma membrane and thylakoid membrane is quite similar to the E.coli plasma membrane and Arabidopsis thylakoid membrane, respectively. Synechocystis 6803 can therefore be described as a gram-negative bacterium that has an additional internal membrane system that fulfils the energetic requirements of the cell.

  2. Global Proteomic Analysis Reveals an Exclusive Role of Thylakoid Membranes in Bioenergetics of a Model Cyanobacterium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liberton, Michelle; Saha, Rajib; Jacobs, Jon M.; Nguyen, Amelia Y.; Gritsenko, Marina A.; Smith, Richard D.; Koppenaal, David W.; Pakrasi, Himadri B.

    2016-04-07

    Cyanobacteria are photosynthetic microbes with highlydifferentiated membrane systems. These organisms contain an outer membrane, plasma membrane, and an internal system of thylakoid membranes where the photosynthetic and respiratory machinery are found. This existence of compartmentalization and differentiation of membrane systems poses a number of challenges for cyanobacterial cells in terms of organization and distribution of proteins to the correct membrane system. Proteomics studies have long sought to identify the components of the different membrane systems in cyanobacteria, and to date about 450 different proteins have been attributed to either the plasma membrane or thylakoid membrane. Given the complexity of these membranes, many more proteins remain to be identified, and a comprehensive catalogue of plasma membrane and thylakoid membrane proteins is needed. Here we describe the identification of 635 differentially localized proteins in Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 by quantitative iTRAQ isobaric labeling; of these, 459 proteins were localized to the plasma membrane and 176 were localized to the thylakoid membrane. Surprisingly, we found over 2.5 times the number of unique proteins identified in the plasma membrane compared with the thylakoid membrane. This suggests that the protein composition of the thylakoid membrane is more homogeneous than the plasma membrane, consistent with the role of the plasma membrane in diverse cellular processes including protein trafficking and nutrient import, compared with a more specialized role for the thylakoid membrane in cellular energetics. Thus, our data clearly define the two membrane systems with distinct functions. Overall, the protein compositions of the Synechocystis 6803 plasma membrane and thylakoid membrane are quite similar to that of the plasma membrane of Escherichia coli and thylakoid membrane of Arabidopsis chloroplasts, respectively. Synechocystis 6803 can therefore be described as a Gram

  3. Pharmacoinformatic and molecular docking studies reveal potential novel antidepressants against neurodegenerative disorders by targeting HSPB8

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sehgal SA

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Sheikh Arslan Sehgal,1–4 Shazia Mannan,1 Sannia Ali1 1Department of Bioscience, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Sahiwal, Pakistan; 2State Key Laboratory of Biomembrane and Membrane Biotechnology, Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 3University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, People’s Republic of China; 4Department of Bioinformatics and Biotechnology, International Islamic University, Islamabad, Pakistan Abstract: Charcot–Marie–Tooth (CMT disease is an inherited peripheral neuromuscular disorder characterized by length-dependent and progressive degeneration of peripheral nerves, leading to muscular weakness. Research has shown that mutated HSPB8 may be responsible for depression, neurodegenerative disorders, and improper functioning of peripheral nerves, resulting in neuromuscular disorders like CMT. In the current work, a hybrid approach of virtual screening and molecular docking studies was followed by homology modeling and pharmacophore identification. Detailed screening analyses were carried out by 2-D similarity search against prescribed antidepressant drugs with physicochemical properties. LigandScout was employed to ascertain novel molecules and pharmacophore properties. In this study, we report three novel compounds that showed maximum binding affinity with HSPB8. Docking analysis elucidated that Met37, Ser57, Ser58, Trp60, Thr63, Thr114, Lys115, Asp116, Gly117, Val152, Val154, Leu186, Asp189, Ser190, Gln191, and Glu192 are critical residues for ligand–receptor interactions. Our analyses suggested paroxetine as a potent compound for targeting HSPB8. Selected compounds have more effective energy scores than the selected drug analogs. Additionally, site-directed mutagenesis could be significant for further analysis of the binding pocket. The novel findings based on an in silico approach may be momentous for potent drug design against depression and CMT. Keywords: bioinformatics, computer

  4. Transcriptome and Proteome Studies Reveal Candidate Attachment Genes during the Development of the Barnacle Amphibalanus Amphitrite

    KAUST Repository

    Al-Aqeel, Sarah

    2016-09-21

    The acorn barnacle, Balanus amphitrite, is the main biofouling organism in marine environments. In the present study we profiled the transcriptome and proteome of B. amphitrite at different life stages (nauplius II, nauplius VI, and cyprid) from the Red Sea, where the average water surface temperature is 34°C and the salinity reaches 41%. We identified 65,784 expressed contigs, and a total of 1387 expressed proteins measured by quantitative proteomics. We found that osmotic stress, salt stress, hyperosmotic response and the Wnt signaling pathway were strongly up-regulated during the planktonic stage, while the MAPK pathway, lipid metabolism, and cuticle development genes were down-regulated. In the transition stage between the nauplius VI and the cyprid, genes that are involved in blood coagulation, cuticle development and eggshell formation were highly up-regulated, while the nitric oxide pathway, which stimulates the swimming and feeding response in marine invertebrates, was down-regulated. We are able to report for the first time that sound sensory system proteins are highly abundant in the nauplius VI stage, implying that these proteins are good targets for the development of new antifouling compounds. The results presented here together with the new genome-wide datasets for a non-model specie represent an important resource for the study of biofouling and development. Proteomics data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD004679.

  5. Transcriptome and proteome studies reveal candidate attachment genes during the development of the barnacle Amphibalanus Amphitrite

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Al-Aqeel

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The acorn barnacle, Balanus amphitrite, is the main biofouling organism in marine environments. In the present study we profiled the transcriptome and proteome of B. amphitrite at different life stages (nauplius II, nauplius VI and cyprid from the Red Sea, where the average water surface temperature is 34°C and the salinity reaches 41‰. We identified 65,784 expressed contigs, and a total of 1,387 expressed proteins measured by quantitative proteomics. We found that osmotic stress, salt stress, hyperosmotic response and the Wnt signaling pathway were strongly up-regulated during the planktonic stage, while the MAPK pathway, lipid metabolism, and cuticle development genes were down-regulated. In the transition stage between the nauplius VI and the cyprid, genes that are involved in blood coagulation, cuticle development and eggshell formation were highly up-regulated, while the nitric oxide pathway, which stimulates the swimming and feeding response in marine invertebrates, was down-regulated. We are able to report for the first time that sound sensory system proteins are highly abundant in the nauplius VI stage, implying that these proteins are good targets for the development of new antifouling compounds. The results presented here together with the new genome-wide datasets for a non-model specie represent an important resource for the study of biofouling and development.

  6. Genomewide association study reveals a risk locus for equine metabolic syndrome in the Arabian horse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, S L; Holl, H M; Streeter, C; Posbergh, C; Schanbacher, B J; Place, N J; Mallicote, M F; Long, M T; Brooks, S A

    2017-03-01

    Equine obesity can cause life-threatening secondary chronic conditions, similar to those in humans and other animal species. Equine metabolic syndrome (EMS), primarily characterized by hyperinsulinemia, is often present in obese horses and ponies. Due to clinical similarities to conditions such as pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (formerly equine Cushing's disease), conclusive diagnosis of EMS often proves challenging. Aside from changes in diet and exercise, few targeted treatments are available for EMS, emphasizing the need for early identification of at-risk individuals to enable implementation of preventative measures. A genomewide association study (GWAS) using Arabian horses with a history of severe laminitis secondary to EMS revealed significant genetic markers near a single candidate gene () that may play a role in cholesterol homeostasis. The best marker, BIEC2-263524 (chr14:69276814 T > C), was correlated with elevated insulin values and increased frequency of laminitis ( = 0.0024 and = 9.663 × 10, respectively). In a second population of Arabian horses, the BIEC2-263524 marker maintained its associations with higher modified insulin-to-glucose ratio (MIRG) values ( = 0.0056) and BCS ( = 0.0063). Screening of the predicted coding regions by sequencing identified a polymorphic guanine homopolymer and 5 haplotypes in the 3' untranslated region (UTR). An 11 guanine (11-G) allele at was correlated with elevated insulin values in the GWAS population ( = 0.0008) and, in the second population, elevated MIRG and increased BCS > 6.5 ( = 0.0055 and = 0.0162, respectively). The BIEC2-263524-C and the 3' UTR -11(G) polymorphisms were correlated at a 98% frequency, indicating strong linkage disequilibrium across this 150-kb haplotype. Assays for these markers could diagnose horses with a genetic predisposition to develop obesity. Additionally, discovery of FAM174A function may improve our understanding of the etiology of this troubling illness in the horse and

  7. Crystal study and econometric model

    Science.gov (United States)

    1975-01-01

    An econometric model was developed that can be used to predict demand and supply figures for crystals over a time horizon roughly concurrent with that of NASA's Space Shuttle Program - that is, 1975 through 1990. The model includes an equation to predict the impact on investment in the crystal-growing industry. Actually, two models are presented. The first is a theoretical model which follows rather strictly the standard theoretical economic concepts involved in supply and demand analysis, and a modified version of the model was developed which, though not quite as theoretically sound, was testable utilizing existing data sources.

  8. Model quality and safety studies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, K.E.

    1997-01-01

    evaluation group (MEG) is a European initiative on evaluation of technical models used within the major industrial hazard area and is supported by the EC DGXII, Directorate-General for Science, Research and Development. Closely related to MEG is REDIPHEM, which is the acronym of a research project supported...... by the EC Environment Research Programme focusing on assessment of the quality of experimental data and models for dense gas dispersion created within the EC funded research programmes. Technical models are used in a number of areas of industrial hazards assessment. It is becoming more and more apparent...... of ensuring that model development is of a standard that is commensurate with the importance of model use. The aim of MEG is to improve the culture in which models are developed and used and so ensure that technical models used in all aspects of major hazard evaluation are up to date with technical...

  9. Data-driven modeling of sleep EEG and EOG reveals characteristics indicative of pre-Parkinson's and Parkinson's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Julie Anja Engelhard; Zoetmulder, Marielle; Koch, Henriette

    2014-01-01

    Background: Manual scoring of sleep relies on identifying certain characteristics in polysomnograph (PSG) signals. However, these characteristics are disrupted in patients with neurodegenerative diseases. New method: This study evaluates sleep using a topic modeling and unsupervised learning appr...

  10. Genome-Wide Association Study of Metabolic Traits Reveals Novel Gene-Metabolite-Disease Links

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholls, Andrew W.; Salek, Reza M.; Marques-Vidal, Pedro; Morya, Edgard; Sameshima, Koichi; Montoliu, Ivan; Da Silva, Laeticia; Collino, Sebastiano; Martin, François-Pierre; Rezzi, Serge; Steinbeck, Christoph; Waterworth, Dawn M.; Waeber, Gérard; Vollenweider, Peter; Beckmann, Jacques S.; Le Coutre, Johannes; Mooser, Vincent; Bergmann, Sven; Genick, Ulrich K.; Kutalik, Zoltán

    2014-01-01

    Metabolic traits are molecular phenotypes that can drive clinical phenotypes and may predict disease progression. Here, we report results from a metabolome- and genome-wide association study on 1H-NMR urine metabolic profiles. The study was conducted within an untargeted approach, employing a novel method for compound identification. From our discovery cohort of 835 Caucasian individuals who participated in the CoLaus study, we identified 139 suggestively significant (P<5×10−8) and independent associations between single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) and metabolome features. Fifty-six of these associations replicated in the TasteSensomics cohort, comprising 601 individuals from São Paulo of vastly diverse ethnic background. They correspond to eleven gene-metabolite associations, six of which had been previously identified in the urine metabolome and three in the serum metabolome. Our key novel findings are the associations of two SNPs with NMR spectral signatures pointing to fucose (rs492602, P = 6.9×10−44) and lysine (rs8101881, P = 1.2×10−33), respectively. Fine-mapping of the first locus pinpointed the FUT2 gene, which encodes a fucosyltransferase enzyme and has previously been associated with Crohn's disease. This implicates fucose as a potential prognostic disease marker, for which there is already published evidence from a mouse model. The second SNP lies within the SLC7A9 gene, rare mutations of which have been linked to severe kidney damage. The replication of previous associations and our new discoveries demonstrate the potential of untargeted metabolomics GWAS to robustly identify molecular disease markers. PMID:24586186

  11. Genome-wide association study of metabolic traits reveals novel gene-metabolite-disease links.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rico Rueedi

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Metabolic traits are molecular phenotypes that can drive clinical phenotypes and may predict disease progression. Here, we report results from a metabolome- and genome-wide association study on (1H-NMR urine metabolic profiles. The study was conducted within an untargeted approach, employing a novel method for compound identification. From our discovery cohort of 835 Caucasian individuals who participated in the CoLaus study, we identified 139 suggestively significant (P<5×10(-8 and independent associations between single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP and metabolome features. Fifty-six of these associations replicated in the TasteSensomics cohort, comprising 601 individuals from São Paulo of vastly diverse ethnic background. They correspond to eleven gene-metabolite associations, six of which had been previously identified in the urine metabolome and three in the serum metabolome. Our key novel findings are the associations of two SNPs with NMR spectral signatures pointing to fucose (rs492602, P = 6.9×10(-44 and lysine (rs8101881, P = 1.2×10(-33, respectively. Fine-mapping of the first locus pinpointed the FUT2 gene, which encodes a fucosyltransferase enzyme and has previously been associated with Crohn's disease. This implicates fucose as a potential prognostic disease marker, for which there is already published evidence from a mouse model. The second SNP lies within the SLC7A9 gene, rare mutations of which have been linked to severe kidney damage. The replication of previous associations and our new discoveries demonstrate the potential of untargeted metabolomics GWAS to robustly identify molecular disease markers.

  12. Study of a twisted ATLAS SCT Barrel deformation as revealed by a photogrammetric survey

    CERN Document Server

    Dobson, E; Heinemann, F; Karagoz-Unel, M

    2007-01-01

    A photogrammetry survey on the SCT barrels was performed as an engineering check on the structure of the ATLAS Semiconductor Tracker (SCT) shortly after construction. Analysis of the data obtained revealed small scale elliptical deformation as well as a twist of the structure. The results of the survey are presented as well as interpolation of the measured targets to the module positions and a comparison with track based alignment measurements.

  13. Large cross-sectional study of presbycusis reveals rapid progressive decline in auditory temporal acuity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozmeral, Erol J; Eddins, Ann C; Frisina, D Robert; Eddins, David A

    2016-07-01

    The auditory system relies on extraordinarily precise timing cues for the accurate perception of speech, music, and object identification. Epidemiological research has documented the age-related progressive decline in hearing sensitivity that is known to be a major health concern for the elderly. Although smaller investigations indicate that auditory temporal processing also declines with age, such measures have not been included in larger studies. Temporal gap detection thresholds (TGDTs; an index of auditory temporal resolution) measured in 1071 listeners (aged 18-98 years) were shown to decline at a minimum rate of 1.05 ms (15%) per decade. Age was a significant predictor of TGDT when controlling for audibility (partial correlation) and when restricting analyses to persons with normal-hearing sensitivity (n = 434). The TGDTs were significantly better for males (3.5 ms; 51%) than females when averaged across the life span. These results highlight the need for indices of temporal processing in diagnostics, as treatment targets, and as factors in models of aging. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. An Epidemiological Study of Population Health Reveals Social Smoking as a Major Cardiovascular Risk Factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gawlik, Kate Sustersic; Melnyk, Bernadette Mazurek; Tan, Alai

    2017-01-01

    To present nationally representative data on the prevalence of "social" smoking and its relationship to cardiovascular health. A population-based, cross-sectional survey on cardiovascular health and its risk factors across the United States. Million Hearts ® cardiovascular screenings that took place in community settings. De-identified data were collected on a convenient sample of 39, 555 participants. Reported smoking status, blood pressure, and total cholesterol. The prevalence of current smoking, social smoking, and non-smoking were cross-tabulated and stratified by sample characteristics. The adjusted estimates were derived from multiple logistic regression models, adjusting for demographics and other biometric measures. Ten percent identified as social smokers. Social smokers were more likely to be aged between 21 and 40, male, and Hispanic. Social smokers had significantly higher risks of having hypertension (odds ratio [OR]: 2.08, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.80-2.41) and elevated cholesterol (OR: 1.53, 95% CI: 1.33-1.75) than non-smokers. There was no significant difference between social smokers and current smokers (OR = 0.94, 95% CI = 0.80-1.14 for hypertension and OR = 0.95, 95% CI = 0.81-1.11 for elevated cholesterol). This is the first population health study to compare the blood pressure and cholesterol levels of people who self-identify as current verses social smokers. Although previous smoking behavior was not controlled for in the analysis, this study demonstrates there is no significant difference in the prevalence of elevated blood pressure or cholesterol among the 2 smoking groups.

  15. Modeling reveals bistability and low-pass filtering in the network module determining blood stem cell fate.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jatin Narula

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Combinatorial regulation of gene expression is ubiquitous in eukaryotes with multiple inputs converging on regulatory control elements. The dynamic properties of these elements determine the functionality of genetic networks regulating differentiation and development. Here we propose a method to quantitatively characterize the regulatory output of distant enhancers with a biophysical approach that recursively determines free energies of protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions from experimental analysis of transcriptional reporter libraries. We apply this method to model the Scl-Gata2-Fli1 triad-a network module important for cell fate specification of hematopoietic stem cells. We show that this triad module is inherently bistable with irreversible transitions in response to physiologically relevant signals such as Notch, Bmp4 and Gata1 and we use the model to predict the sensitivity of the network to mutations. We also show that the triad acts as a low-pass filter by switching between steady states only in response to signals that persist for longer than a minimum duration threshold. We have found that the auto-regulation loops connecting the slow-degrading Scl to Gata2 and Fli1 are crucial for this low-pass filtering property. Taken together our analysis not only reveals new insights into hematopoietic stem cell regulatory network functionality but also provides a novel and widely applicable strategy to incorporate experimental measurements into dynamical network models.

  16. RNA Virus Evolution via a Quasispecies-Based Model Reveals a Drug Target with a High Barrier to Resistance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard J. Bingham

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The rapid occurrence of therapy-resistant mutant strains provides a challenge for anti-viral therapy. An ideal drug target would be a highly conserved molecular feature in the viral life cycle, such as the packaging signals in the genomes of RNA viruses that encode an instruction manual for their efficient assembly. The ubiquity of this assembly code in RNA viruses, including major human pathogens, suggests that it confers selective advantages. However, their impact on viral evolution cannot be assessed in current models of viral infection that lack molecular details of virus assembly. We introduce here a quasispecies-based model of a viral infection that incorporates structural and mechanistic knowledge of packaging signal function in assembly to construct a phenotype-fitness map, capturing the impact of this RNA code on assembly yield and efficiency. Details of viral replication and assembly inside an infected host cell are coupled with a population model of a viral infection, allowing the occurrence of therapy resistance to be assessed in response to drugs inhibiting packaging signal recognition. Stochastic simulations of viral quasispecies evolution in chronic HCV infection under drug action and/or immune clearance reveal that drugs targeting all RNA signals in the assembly code collectively have a high barrier to drug resistance, even though each packaging signal in isolation has a lower barrier than conventional drugs. This suggests that drugs targeting the RNA signals in the assembly code could be promising routes for exploitation in anti-viral drug design.

  17. RNA Virus Evolution via a Quasispecies-Based Model Reveals a Drug Target with a High Barrier to Resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bingham, Richard J; Dykeman, Eric C; Twarock, Reidun

    2017-11-17

    The rapid occurrence of therapy-resistant mutant strains provides a challenge for anti-viral therapy. An ideal drug target would be a highly conserved molecular feature in the viral life cycle, such as the packaging signals in the genomes of RNA viruses that encode an instruction manual for their efficient assembly. The ubiquity of this assembly code in RNA viruses, including major human pathogens, suggests that it confers selective advantages. However, their impact on viral evolution cannot be assessed in current models of viral infection that lack molecular details of virus assembly. We introduce here a quasispecies-based model of a viral infection that incorporates structural and mechanistic knowledge of packaging signal function in assembly to construct a phenotype-fitness map, capturing the impact of this RNA code on assembly yield and efficiency. Details of viral replication and assembly inside an infected host cell are coupled with a population model of a viral infection, allowing the occurrence of therapy resistance to be assessed in response to drugs inhibiting packaging signal recognition. Stochastic simulations of viral quasispecies evolution in chronic HCV infection under drug action and/or immune clearance reveal that drugs targeting all RNA signals in the assembly code collectively have a high barrier to drug resistance, even though each packaging signal in isolation has a lower barrier than conventional drugs. This suggests that drugs targeting the RNA signals in the assembly code could be promising routes for exploitation in anti-viral drug design.

  18. Mouse model of chromosome mosaicism reveals lineage-specific depletion of aneuploid cells and normal developmental potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolton, Helen; Graham, Sarah J L; Van der Aa, Niels; Kumar, Parveen; Theunis, Koen; Fernandez Gallardo, Elia; Voet, Thierry; Zernicka-Goetz, Magdalena

    2016-03-29

    Most human pre-implantation embryos are mosaics of euploid and aneuploid cells. To determine the fate of aneuploid cells and the developmental potential of mosaic embryos, here we generate a mouse model of chromosome mosaicism. By treating embryos with a spindle assembly checkpoint inhibitor during the four- to eight-cell division, we efficiently generate aneuploid cells, resulting in embryo death during peri-implantation development. Live-embryo imaging and single-cell tracking in chimeric embryos, containing aneuploid and euploid cells, reveal that the fate of aneuploid cells depends on lineage: aneuploid cells in the fetal lineage are eliminated by apoptosis, whereas those in the placental lineage show severe proliferative defects. Overall, the proportion of aneuploid cells is progressively depleted from the blastocyst stage onwards. Finally, we show that mosaic embryos have full developmental potential, provided they contain sufficient euploid cells, a finding of significance for the assessment of embryo vitality in the clinic.

  19. Mouse model of chromosome mosaicism reveals lineage-specific depletion of aneuploid cells and normal developmental potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolton, Helen; Graham, Sarah J. L.; Van der Aa, Niels; Kumar, Parveen; Theunis, Koen; Fernandez Gallardo, Elia; Voet, Thierry; Zernicka-Goetz, Magdalena

    2016-01-01

    Most human pre-implantation embryos are mosaics of euploid and aneuploid cells. To determine the fate of aneuploid cells and the developmental potential of mosaic embryos, here we generate a mouse model of chromosome mosaicism. By treating embryos with a spindle assembly checkpoint inhibitor during the four- to eight-cell division, we efficiently generate aneuploid cells, resulting in embryo death during peri-implantation development. Live-embryo imaging and single-cell tracking in chimeric embryos, containing aneuploid and euploid cells, reveal that the fate of aneuploid cells depends on lineage: aneuploid cells in the fetal lineage are eliminated by apoptosis, whereas those in the placental lineage show severe proliferative defects. Overall, the proportion of aneuploid cells is progressively depleted from the blastocyst stage onwards. Finally, we show that mosaic embryos have full developmental potential, provided they contain sufficient euploid cells, a finding of significance for the assessment of embryo vitality in the clinic. PMID:27021558

  20. Analysis of the cartilage proteome from three different mouse models of genetic skeletal diseases reveals common and discrete disease signatures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter A. Bell

    2013-06-01

    Pseudoachondroplasia and multiple epiphyseal dysplasia are genetic skeletal diseases resulting from mutations in cartilage structural proteins. Electron microscopy and immunohistochemistry previously showed that the appearance of the cartilage extracellular matrix (ECM in targeted mouse models of these diseases is disrupted; however, the precise changes in ECM organization and the pathological consequences remain unknown. Our aim was to determine the effects of matrilin-3 and COMP mutations on the composition and extractability of ECM components to inform how these detrimental changes might influence cartilage organization and degeneration. Cartilage was sequentially extracted using increasing denaturants and the extraction profiles of specific proteins determined using SDS-PAGE/Western blotting. Furthermore, the relative composition of protein pools was determined using mass spectrometry for a non-biased semi-quantitative analysis. Western blotting revealed changes in the extraction of matrilins, COMP and collagen IX in mutant cartilage. Mass spectrometry confirmed quantitative changes in the extraction of structural and non-structural ECM proteins, including proteins with roles in cellular processes such as protein folding and trafficking. In particular, genotype-specific differences in the extraction of collagens XII and XIV and tenascins C and X were identified; interestingly, increased expression of several of these genes has recently been implicated in susceptibility and/or progression of murine osteoarthritis. We demonstrated that mutation of matrilin-3 and COMP caused changes in the extractability of other cartilage proteins and that proteomic analyses of Matn3 V194D, Comp T585M and Comp DelD469 mouse models revealed both common and discrete disease signatures that provide novel insight into skeletal disease mechanisms and cartilage degradation.

  1. Association Study Reveals Novel Genes Related to Yield and Quality of Fruit in Cape Gooseberry (Physalis peruviana L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francy L. García-Arias

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Association mapping has been proposed as an efficient approach to assist plant breeding programs to investigate the genetic basis of agronomic traits. In this study, we evaluated 18 traits related to yield, (FWP, NF, FWI, and FWII, fruit size-shape (FP, FA, MW, WMH, MH, HMW, DI, FSI, FSII, OVO, OBO, and fruit quality (FIR, CF, and SST, in a diverse collection of 100 accessions of Physalis peruviana including wild, landraces, and anther culture derived lines. We identified seven accessions with suitable traits: fruit weight per plant (FWP > 7,000 g/plant and cracked fruits (CF < 4%, to be used as parents in cape gooseberry breeding program. In addition, the accessions were also characterized using Genotyping By Sequencing (GBS. We discovered 27,982 and 36,142 informative SNP markers based on the alignment against the two cape gooseberry references transcriptomes. Besides, 30,344 SNPs were identified based on alignment to the tomato reference genome. Genetic structure analysis showed that the population could be divided into two or three sub-groups, corresponding to landraces-anther culture and wild accessions for K = 2 and wild, landraces, and anther culture plants for K = 3. Association analysis was carried out using a Mixed Linear Model (MLM and 34 SNP markers were significantly associated. These results reveal the basis of the genetic control of important agronomic traits and may facilitate marker-based breeding in P. peruviana.

  2. Association Study Reveals Novel Genes Related to Yield and Quality of Fruit in Cape Gooseberry (Physalis peruviana L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Arias, Francy L; Osorio-Guarín, Jaime A; Núñez Zarantes, Victor M

    2018-01-01

    Association mapping has been proposed as an efficient approach to assist plant breeding programs to investigate the genetic basis of agronomic traits. In this study, we evaluated 18 traits related to yield, (FWP, NF, FWI, and FWII), fruit size-shape (FP, FA, MW, WMH, MH, HMW, DI, FSI, FSII, OVO, OBO), and fruit quality (FIR, CF, and SST), in a diverse collection of 100 accessions of Physalis peruviana including wild, landraces, and anther culture derived lines. We identified seven accessions with suitable traits: fruit weight per plant (FWP) > 7,000 g/plant and cracked fruits (CF) cape gooseberry breeding program. In addition, the accessions were also characterized using Genotyping By Sequencing (GBS). We discovered 27,982 and 36,142 informative SNP markers based on the alignment against the two cape gooseberry references transcriptomes. Besides, 30,344 SNPs were identified based on alignment to the tomato reference genome. Genetic structure analysis showed that the population could be divided into two or three sub-groups, corresponding to landraces-anther culture and wild accessions for K = 2 and wild, landraces, and anther culture plants for K = 3. Association analysis was carried out using a Mixed Linear Model (MLM) and 34 SNP markers were significantly associated. These results reveal the basis of the genetic control of important agronomic traits and may facilitate marker-based breeding in P. peruviana .

  3. A genomic analysis of mouse models of breast cancer reveals molecular features of mouse models and relationships to human breast cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollern, Daniel P; Andrechek, Eran R

    2014-06-05

    Genomic variability limits the efficacy of breast cancer therapy. To simplify the study of the molecular complexity of breast cancer, researchers have used mouse mammary tumor models. However, the degree to which mouse models model human breast cancer and are reflective of the human heterogeneity has yet to be demonstrated with gene expression studies on a large scale. To this end, we have built a database consisting of 1,172 mouse mammary tumor samples from 26 different major oncogenic mouse mammary tumor models. In this dataset we identified heterogeneity within mouse models and noted a surprising amount of interrelatedness between models, despite differences in the tumor initiating oncogene. Making comparisons between models, we identified differentially expressed genes with alteration correlating with initiating events in each model. Using annotation tools, we identified transcription factors with a high likelihood of activity within these models. Gene signatures predicted activation of major cell signaling pathways in each model, predictions that correlated with previous genetic studies. Finally, we noted relationships between mouse models and human breast cancer at both the level of gene expression and predicted signal pathway activity. Importantly, we identified individual mouse models that recapitulate human breast cancer heterogeneity at the level of gene expression. This work underscores the importance of fully characterizing mouse tumor biology at molecular, histological and genomic levels before a valid comparison to human breast cancer may be drawn and provides an important bioinformatic resource.

  4. Battlescale Forecast Model Sensitivity Study

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sauter, Barbara

    2003-01-01

    .... Changes to the surface observations used in the Battlescale Forecast Model initialization led to no significant changes in the resulting forecast values of temperature, relative humidity, wind speed, or wind direction...

  5. Molecular basis of structural make-up of feeds in relation to nutrient absorption in ruminants, revealed with advanced molecular spectroscopy: A review on techniques and models

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rahman, Md. Mostafizar [Department of Animal and Poultry Science, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada; Yu, Peiqiang [Department of Animal and Poultry Science, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

    2017-01-31

    Progress in ruminant feed research is no more feasible only based on wet chemical analysis, which is merely able to provide information on chemical composition of feeds regardless of their digestive features and nutritive value in ruminants. Studying internal structural make-up of functional groups/feed nutrients is often vital for understanding the digestive behaviors and nutritive values of feeds in ruminant because the intrinsic structure of feed nutrients is more related to its overall absorption. In this article, the detail information on the recent developments in molecular spectroscopic techniques to reveal microstructural information of feed nutrients and the use of nutrition models in regards to ruminant feed research was reviewed. The emphasis of this review was on (1) the technological progress in the use of molecular spectroscopic techniques in ruminant feed research; (2) revealing spectral analysis of functional groups of biomolecules/feed nutrients; (3) the use of advanced nutrition models for better prediction of nutrient availability in ruminant systems; and (4) the application of these molecular techniques and combination of nutrient models in cereals, co-products and pulse crop research. The information described in this article will promote better insight in the progress of research on molecular structural make-up of feed nutrients in ruminants.

  6. A standardized fold change method for microarray differential expression analysis used to reveal genes involved in acute rejection in murine allograft models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Weichen; Wang, Yi; Fujino, Masayuki; Shi, Leming; Jin, Li; Li, Xiao-Kang; Wang, Jiucun

    2018-03-01

    Murine transplantation models are used extensively to research immunological rejection and tolerance. Here we studied both murine heart and liver allograft models using microarray technology. We had difficulty in identifying genes related to acute rejections expressed in both heart and liver transplantation models using two standard methodologies: Student's t test and linear models for microarray data (Limma). Here we describe a new method, standardized fold change (SFC), for differential analysis of microarray data. We estimated the performance of SFC, the t test and Limma by generating simulated microarray data 100 times. SFC performed better than the t test and showed a higher sensitivity than Limma where there is a larger value for fold change of expression. SFC gave better reproducibility than Limma and the t test with real experimental data from the MicroArray Quality Control platform and expression data from a mouse cardiac allograft. Eventually, a group of significant overlapping genes was detected by SFC in the expression data of mouse cardiac and hepatic allografts and further validated with the quantitative RT-PCR assay. The group included genes for important reactions of transplantation rejection and revealed functional changes of the immune system in both heart and liver of the mouse model. We suggest that SFC can be utilized to stably and effectively detect differential gene expression and to explore microarray data in further studies.

  7. A multi-scale model for hair follicles reveals heterogeneous domains driving rapid spatiotemporal hair growth patterning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qixuan; Oh, Ji Won; Lee, Hye-Lim; Dhar, Anukriti; Peng, Tao; Ramos, Raul; Guerrero-Juarez, Christian Fernando; Wang, Xiaojie; Zhao, Ran; Cao, Xiaoling; Le, Jonathan; Fuentes, Melisa A; Jocoy, Shelby C; Rossi, Antoni R; Vu, Brian; Pham, Kim; Wang, Xiaoyang; Mali, Nanda Maya; Park, Jung Min; Choi, June-Hyug; Lee, Hyunsu; Legrand, Julien M D; Kandyba, Eve; Kim, Jung Chul; Kim, Moonkyu; Foley, John; Yu, Zhengquan; Kobielak, Krzysztof; Andersen, Bogi; Khosrotehrani, Kiarash; Nie, Qing; Plikus, Maksim V

    2017-01-01

    The control principles behind robust cyclic regeneration of hair follicles (HFs) remain unclear. Using multi-scale modeling, we show that coupling inhibitors and activators with physical growth of HFs is sufficient to drive periodicity and excitability of hair regeneration. Model simulations and experimental data reveal that mouse skin behaves as a heterogeneous regenerative field, composed of anatomical domains where HFs have distinct cycling dynamics. Interactions between fast-cycling chin and ventral HFs and slow-cycling dorsal HFs produce bilaterally symmetric patterns. Ear skin behaves as a hyper-refractory domain with HFs in extended rest phase. Such hyper-refractivity relates to high levels of BMP ligands and WNT antagonists, in part expressed by ear-specific cartilage and muscle. Hair growth stops at the boundaries with hyper-refractory ears and anatomically discontinuous eyelids, generating wave-breaking effects. We posit that similar mechanisms for coupled regeneration with dominant activator, hyper-refractory, and wave-breaker regions can operate in other actively renewing organs. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.22772.001 PMID:28695824

  8. Systems biology modeling reveals a possible mechanism of the tumor cell death upon oncogene inactivation in EGFR addicted cancers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian-Ping Zhou

    Full Text Available Despite many evidences supporting the concept of "oncogene addiction" and many hypotheses rationalizing it, there is still a lack of detailed understanding to the precise molecular mechanism underlying oncogene addiction. In this account, we developed a mathematic model of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR associated signaling network, which involves EGFR-driving proliferation/pro-survival signaling pathways Ras/extracellular-signal-regulated kinase (ERK and phosphoinositol-3 kinase (PI3K/AKT, and pro-apoptotic signaling pathway apoptosis signal-regulating kinase 1 (ASK1/p38. In the setting of sustained EGFR activation, the simulation results show a persistent high level of proliferation/pro-survival effectors phospho-ERK and phospho-AKT, and a basal level of pro-apoptotic effector phospho-p38. The potential of p38 activation (apoptotic potential due to the elevated level of reactive oxygen species (ROS is largely suppressed by the negative crosstalk between PI3K/AKT and ASK1/p38 pathways. Upon acute EGFR inactivation, the survival signals decay rapidly, followed by a fast increase of the apoptotic signal due to the release of apoptotic potential. Overall, our systems biology modeling together with experimental validations reveals that inhibition of survival signals and concomitant release of apoptotic potential jointly contribute to the tumor cell death following the inhibition of addicted oncogene in EGFR addicted cancers.

  9. Radionuclides in fruit systems: Model-model intercomparison study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Linkov, I. [Cambridge Environmental, 58 Charles Street, Cambridge, MA 02141 (United States)]. E-mail: linkov@cambridgeenvironmental.com; Carini, F. [Universita Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Chemistry, Via Emilia Parmense, 84, I-29100 Piacenza (Italy); Collins, C. [T.H. Huxley School of Environment, Earth Sciences and Engineering (United Kingdom); Eged, K. [Department of Radiochemistry, University of Veszprem, P.O. Box 158 H-8201, H-8200 Veszprem (Hungary); Mitchell, N.G. [Mouchel Consulting Ltd., West Hall, Parvis Road, West Byfleet, Surrey, KT14 6EZ (United Kingdom); Mourlon, C. [Institute of Protection and Nuclear Safety (IPSN)/Division of Environmental Protection (DPRE), Laboratory of Environmental Modelling - LMODE, CE/Cadarache, 13 108 St Paul-lez-Durance Cedex (France); Ould-Dada, Z. [Food Standards Agency, Radiological Protection and Research Management Division, Aviation House, 125 Kingsway, Room 715B, London WC2B 6NH (United Kingdom); Robles, B. [CIEMAT, Dept. de Impacto Ambiental (DIAE), Edif. 3A, Avenida Complutense 22, E-28040 Madrid (Spain); Sweeck, L. [SCK.CEN, Boeretang 200, 2400 Mol (Belgium); Venter, A. [Enviros Consulting Ltd., Telegraphic House, Waterfront Quay, Salford Quays, Greater Manchester, M50 3XW (United Kingdom)

    2006-07-01

    Modeling is widely used to predict radionuclide distribution following accidental radionuclide releases. Modeling is crucial in emergency response planning and risk communication, and understanding model uncertainty is important not only in conducting analysis consistent with current regulatory guidance, but also in gaining stakeholder and decision-maker trust in the process and confidence in the results. However, while methods for dealing with parameter uncertainty are fairly well developed, an adequate representation of uncertainties associated with models remains rare. This paper addresses uncertainty about a model's structure (i.e., the relevance of simplifying assumptions and mathematical equations) that is seldom addressed in practical applications of environmental modeling. The use of several alternative models to derive a range of model outputs or risks is probably the only available technique to assess consistency in model prediction. Since each independent model requires significant resources for development and calibration, multiple models are not generally applied to the same problem. This study uses results from one such model intercomparison conducted by the Fruits Working Group, which was created under the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) BIOMASS (BIOsphere Modelling and ASSessment) Program. Model-model intercomparisons presented in this study were conducted by the working group for two different scenarios (acute or continuous deposition), one radionuclide ({sup 137}Cs), and three fruit-bearing crops (strawberries, apples, and blackcurrants). The differences between models were as great as five orders of magnitude for short-term predictions following acute radionuclide deposition. For long-term predictions and for the continuous deposition scenario, the differences between models were about two orders of magnitude. The difference between strawberry, apple, and blackcurrant contamination predicted by one model is far less than the

  10. Radionuclides in fruit systems. Model-model intercomparison study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Linkov, I. [Cambridge Environmental, 58 Charles Street, Cambridge, MA 02141 (United States); Carini, F. [Universita Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Chemistry, Via Emilia Parmense, 84, I-29100 Piacenza (Italy); Collins, C. [T.H. Huxley School of Environment, Earth Sciences and Engineering (United Kingdom); Eged, K. [Department of Radiochemistry, University of Veszprem, P.O. Box 158 H-8201, H-8200 Veszprem (Hungary); Mitchell, N.G. [Mouchel Consulting Ltd., West Hall, Parvis Road, West Byfleet, Surrey, KT14 6EZ (United Kingdom); Mourlon, C. [Institute of Protection and Nuclear Safety IPSN, Division of Environmental Protection (DPRE), Laboratory of Environmental Modelling LMODE, CE/Cadarache, 13 108 St Paul-lez-Durance (France); Ould-Dada, Z. [Food Standards Agency, Radiological Protection and Research Management Division, Aviation House, 125 Kingsway, Room 715B, London WC2B 6NH (United Kingdom); Robles, B. [CIEMAT, Dept. de Impacto Ambiental (DIAE), Edif. 3A, Avenida Complutense 22, E-28040 Madrid (Spain); Sweeck, L. [SCK-CEN, Boeretang 200, 2400 Mol (Belgium); Venter, A. [Enviros Consulting Ltd., Telegraphic House, Waterfront Quay, Salford Quays, Greater Manchester, M50 3XW (United Kingdom)

    2006-07-01

    Modeling is widely used to predict radionuclide distribution following accidental radionuclide releases. Modeling is crucial in emergency response planning and risk communication, and understanding model uncertainty is important not only in conducting analysis consistent with current regulatory guidance, but also in gaining stakeholder and decision-maker trust in the process and confidence in the results. However, while methods for dealing with parameter uncertainty are fairly well developed, an adequate representation of uncertainties associated with models remains rare. This paper addresses uncertainty about a model's structure (i.e., the relevance of simplifying assumptions and mathematical equations) that is seldom addressed in practical applications of environmental modeling. The use of several alternative models to derive a range of model outputs or risks is probably the only available technique to assess consistency in model prediction. Since each independent model requires significant resources for development and calibration, multiple models are not generally applied to the same problem. This study uses results from one such model intercomparison conducted by the Fruits Working Group, which was created under the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) BIOMASS (BIOsphere Modelling and ASSessment) Program. Model-model intercomparisons presented in this study were conducted by the working group for two different scenarios (acute or continuous deposition), one radionuclide ({sup 137}Cs), and three fruit-bearing crops (strawberries, apples, and blackcurrants). The differences between models were as great as five orders of magnitude for short-term predictions following acute radionuclide deposition. For long-term predictions and for the continuous deposition scenario, the differences between models were about two orders of magnitude. The difference between strawberry, apple, and blackcurrant contamination predicted by one model is far less than the

  11. Influence of the penetration enhancer isopropyl myristate on stratum corneum lipid model membranes revealed by neutron diffraction and 2H NMR experiments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eichner, Adina; Stahlberg, Sören; Sonnenberger, Stefan; Lange, Stefan; Dobner, Bodo; Ostermann, Andreas; Schrader, Tobias E; Hauß, Thomas; Schroeter, Annett; Huster, Daniel; Neubert, Reinhard H H

    2017-05-01

    The stratum corneum (SC) provides the main barrier properties in native skin. The barrier function is attributed to the intercellular lipids, forming continuous multilamellar membranes. In this study, SC lipid membranes in model ratios were enriched with deuterated lipids in order to investigate structural and dynamical properties by neutron diffraction and 2 H solid-state NMR spectroscopy. Further, the effect of the penetration enhancer isopropyl myristate (IPM) on the structure of a well-known SC lipid model membrane containing synthetically derived methyl-branched ceramide [EOS], ceramide [AP], behenic acid and cholesterol (23/10/33/33wt%) was investigated. IPM supported the formation of a single short-periodicity phase (SPP), in which we determined the molecular organization of CER[AP] and CER[EOS]-br for the first time. Furthermore, the thermotropic phase behavior of the lipid system was analyzed by additional neutron diffraction studies as well as by 2 H solid-state NMR spectroscopy, covering temperatures of 32°C (physiological skin temperature), 50°C, and 70°C with a subsequent cooldown back to skin temperature. Both techniques revealed a phase transition and a hysteresis effect. During the cooldown, Bragg peaks corresponding to a long-periodicity phase (LPP) appeared. Additionally, 2 H NMR revealed that the IPM molecules are isotopic mobile at all temperatures. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. In vivo imaging reveals rapid astrocyte depletion and axon damage in a model of neuromyelitis optica-related pathology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Herwerth, Marina; Kalluri, Sudhakar Reddy; Srivastava, Rajneesh

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Neuromyelitis optica (NMO) is an autoimmune disease of the CNS, which resembles multiple sclerosis (MS). NMO differs from MS, however, in the distribution and histology of neuroinflammatory lesions and shows a more aggressive clinical course. Moreover, the majority of NMO patients carry...... of astrocyte injury in NMO and the mechanisms by which toxicity spreads to axons are not understood. METHODS: Here, we establish in vivo imaging of the spinal cord, one of the main sites of NMO pathology, as a powerful tool to study the formation of experimental NMO-related lesions caused by human AQP4...... antibody concentration and complement, specifically C1q. INTERPRETATION: In vivo imaging of the spinal cord reveals the swift development of NMO-related acute axon injury following AQP4 antibody-mediated astrocyte depletion. This approach will be useful in studying the mechanisms underlying the spread...

  13. Shifts in river-floodplain relationship reveal the impacts of river regulation: A case study of Dongting Lake in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Cai; Jia, Yifei; Jing, Lei; Zeng, Qing; Lei, Jialin; Zhang, Shuanghu; Lei, Guangchun; Wen, Li

    2018-04-01

    Better understanding of the dynamics of hydrological connectivity between river and floodplain is essential for the ecological integrity of river systems. In this study, we proposed a regime-switch modelling (RSM) framework, which integrates change point analysis with dynamic linear regression, to detect and date change points in linear regression, and to quantify the relative importance of natural variations and anthropogenic disturbances. The approach was applied to the long-term hydrological time series to investigate the evolution of river-floodplain relation in Dongting Lake in the last five decades, during which the Yangtze River system experienced unprecedented anthropogenic manipulations. Our results suggested that 1) there were five distinct regimes during which the influence of inflows and local climate on lake water level changed significantly. The detected change points were well corresponding to the major events occurred upon the Yangtze; 2) although the importance of inflows from the Yangtze was greater than that of the tributaries flows over the five regimes, the relative contribution gradually decreased from regime 1 to regime 5. The weakening of hydrological forcing from the Yangtze was mainly attributed to the reduction in channel capacity resulting from sedimentation in the outfalls and water level dropping caused by river bed scour in the mainstream; 3) the effects of local climate was much smaller than these of inflows; and 4) since the operation of The Three Gorges Dam in 2006, the river-floodplain relationship entered a new equilibrium in that all investigated variables changed synchronously in terms of direction and magnitude. The results from this study reveal the mechanisms underlying the alternated inundation regime in Dongting Lake. The identified change points, some of which have not been previously reported, will allow a reappraisal of the current dam and reservoir operation strategies not only for flood/drought risk management but

  14. Seismic tomography model reveals mantle magma sources of recent volcanic activity at El Hierro Island (Canary Islands, Spain)

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Yeguas, Araceli; Ibáñez, Jesús M.; Koulakov, Ivan; Jakovlev, Andrey; Romero-Ruiz, M. Carmen; Prudencio, Janire

    2014-12-01

    We present a 3-D model of P and S velocities beneath El Hierro Island, constructed using the traveltime data of more than 13 000 local earthquakes recorded by the Instituto Geográfico Nacional (IGN, Spain) in the period from 2011 July to 2012 September. The velocity models were performed using the LOTOS code for iterative passive source tomography. The results of inversion were thoroughly verified using different resolution and robustness tests. The results reveal that the majority of the onshore area of El Hierro is associated with a high-velocity anomaly observed down to 10-12-km depth. This anomaly is interpreted as the accumulation of solid igneous rocks erupted during the last 1 Myr and intrusive magmatic bodies. Below this high-velocity pattern, we observe a low-velocity anomaly, interpreted as a batch of magma coming from the mantle located beneath El Hierro. The boundary between the low- and high-velocity anomalies is marked by a prominent seismicity cluster, thought to represent anomalous stresses due to the interaction of the batch of magma with crust material. The areas of recent eruptions, Orchilla and La Restinga, are associated with low-velocity anomalies surrounding the main high-velocity block. These eruptions took place around the island where the crust is much weaker than the onshore area and where the melted material cannot penetrate. These results put constraints on the geological model that could explain the origin of the volcanism in oceanic islands, such as in the Canaries, which is not yet clearly understood.

  15. BIOMOVS: an international model validation study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Haegg, C.; Johansson, G.

    1988-01-01

    BIOMOVS (BIOspheric MOdel Validation Study) is an international study where models used for describing the distribution of radioactive and nonradioactive trace substances in terrestrial and aquatic environments are compared and tested. The main objectives of the study are to compare and test the accuracy of predictions between such models, explain differences in these predictions, recommend priorities for future research concerning the improvement of the accuracy of model predictions and act as a forum for the exchange of ideas, experience and information. (author)

  16. BIOMOVS: An international model validation study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Haegg, C.; Johansson, G.

    1987-01-01

    BIOMOVS (BIOspheric MOdel Validation Study) is an international study where models used for describing the distribution of radioactive and nonradioactive trace substances in terrestrial and aquatic environments are compared and tested. The main objectives of the study are to compare and test the accuracy of predictions between such models, explain differences in these predictions, recommend priorities for future research concerning the improvement of the accuracy of model predictions and act as a forum for the exchange of ideas, experience and information. (orig.)

  17. Systems genomics study reveals expression quantitative trait loci, regulator genes and pathways associated with boar taint in pigs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Markus Drag

    Full Text Available Boar taint is an offensive odour and/or taste from a proportion of non-castrated male pigs caused by skatole and androstenone accumulation during sexual maturity. Castration is widely used to avoid boar taint but is currently under debate because of animal welfare concerns. This study aimed to identify expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs with potential effects on boar taint compounds to improve breeding possibilities for reduced boar taint. Danish Landrace male boars with low, medium and high genetic merit for skatole and human nose score (HNS were slaughtered at ~100 kg. Gene expression profiles were obtained by RNA-Seq, and genotype data were obtained by an Illumina 60K Porcine SNP chip. Following quality control and filtering, 10,545 and 12,731 genes from liver and testis were included in the eQTL analysis, together with 20,827 SNP variants. A total of 205 and 109 single-tissue eQTLs associated with 102 and 58 unique genes were identified in liver and testis, respectively. By employing a multivariate Bayesian hierarchical model, 26 eQTLs were identified as significant multi-tissue eQTLs. The highest densities of eQTLs were found on pig chromosomes SSC12, SSC1, SSC13, SSC9 and SSC14. Functional characterisation of eQTLs revealed functions within regulation of androgen and the intracellular steroid hormone receptor signalling pathway and of xenobiotic metabolism by cytochrome P450 system and cellular response to oestradiol. A QTL enrichment test revealed 89 QTL traits curated by the Animal Genome PigQTL database to be significantly overlapped by the genomic coordinates of cis-acting eQTLs. Finally, a subset of 35 cis-acting eQTLs overlapped with known boar taint QTL traits. These eQTLs could be useful in the development of a DNA test for boar taint but careful monitoring of other overlapping QTL traits should be performed to avoid any negative consequences of selection.

  18. The mass balance of the Greenland ice sheet: sensitivity to climate change as revealed by energy-balance modelling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oerlemans, J.

    1991-01-01

    The sensitivity of the mass balance of the Greenland ice sheet to climate change is studied with an energy-balance model of the ice/snow surface, applied at 200 m elevation intervals for four characteristic regions of the ice sheet. Solar radiation, longwave radiation, turbulent heat fluxes

  19. Revealing a room temperature ferromagnetism in cadmium oxide nanoparticles: An experimental and first-principles study

    KAUST Repository

    Bououdina, Mohamed

    2015-03-26

    We obtain a single cadmium oxide phase from powder synthesized by a thermal decomposition method of cadmium acetate dehydrate. The yielded powder is annealed in air, vacuum, and H2 gas in order to create point defects. Magnetization-field curves reveal the appearance of diamagnetic behavior with a ferromagnetic component for all the powders. Powder annealing under vacuum and H2 atmosphere leads to a saturation magnetization 1.15 memu g-1 and 1.2 memu g-1 respectively with an increase by 45% and 16% compared to the one annealed in air. We show that annealing in vacuum produces mainly oxygen vacancies while annealing in H2 gas creates mainly Cd vacancy leading to room temperature ferromagnetic (RTFM) component together with known diamagnetic properties. Ab initio calculations performed on the CdO nanoparticles show that the magnetism is governed by polarized hybrid states of the Cd d and O p orbitals together with the vacancy. © The Royal Society of Chemistry 2015.

  20. Simultaneous imaging and functional studies reveal a tight correlation between calcium and actin networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bascom, Carlisle S; Winship, Lawrence J; Bezanilla, Magdalena

    2018-03-20

    Tip-growing cells elongate in a highly polarized manner via focused secretion of flexible cell-wall material. Calcium has been implicated as a vital factor in regulating the deposition of cell-wall material. However, deciphering the molecular and mechanistic calcium targets in vivo has remained challenging. Here, we investigated intracellular calcium dynamics in the moss Physcomitrella patens , which provides a system with an abundant source of genetically identical tip-growing cells, excellent cytology, and a large molecular genetic tool kit. To visualize calcium we used a genetically encoded cytosolic FRET probe, revealing a fluctuating tipward gradient with a complex oscillatory profile. Wavelet analysis coupled with a signal-sifting algorithm enabled the quantitative comparison of the calcium behavior in cells where growth was inhibited mechanically, pharmacologically, or genetically. We found that cells with suppressed growth have calcium oscillatory profiles with longer frequencies, suggesting that there is a feedback between the calcium gradient and growth. To investigate the mechanistic basis for this feedback we simultaneously imaged cytosolic calcium and actin, which has been shown to be essential for tip growth. We found that high cytosolic calcium promotes disassembly of a tip-focused actin spot, while low calcium promotes assembly. In support of this, abolishing the calcium gradient resulted in dramatic actin accumulation at the tip. Together these data demonstrate that tipward calcium is quantitatively linked to actin accumulation in vivo and that the moss P. patens provides a powerful system to uncover mechanistic links between calcium, actin, and growth.

  1. Experiments Are Revealing a Foundation Species: A Case Study of Eastern Hemlock (Tsuga canadensis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron M. Ellison

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Foundation species are species that create and define particular ecosystems; control in large measure the distribution and abundance of associated flora and fauna; and modulate core ecosystem processes, such as energy flux and biogeochemical cycles. However, whether a particular species plays a foundational role in a system is not simply asserted. Rather, it is a hypothesis to be tested, and such tests are best done with large-scale, long-term manipulative experiments. The utility of such experiments is illustrated through a review of the Harvard Forest Hemlock Removal Experiment (HF-HeRE, a multidecadal, multihectare experiment designed to test the foundational role of eastern hemlock, Tsuga canadensis, in eastern North American forests. Experimental removal of T. canadensis has revealed that after 10 years, this species has pronounced, long-term effects on associated flora and fauna, but shorter-term effects on energy flux and nutrient cycles. We hypothesize that on century-long scales, slower changes in soil microbial associates will further alter ecosystem processes in T. canadensis stands. HF-HeRE may indeed continue for >100 years, but at such time scales, episodic disturbances and changes in regional climate and land cover can be expected to interact in novel ways with these forests and their foundation species.

  2. Complex network models reveal correlations among network metrics, exercise intensity and role of body changes in the fatigue process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Vanessa Helena; Gama, Maria Carolina Traina; Sousa, Filipe Antônio Barros; Lewis, Theodore Gyle; Gobatto, Claudio Alexandre; Manchado-Gobatto, Fúlvia Barros

    2015-05-21

    The aims of the present study were analyze the fatigue process at distinct intensity efforts and to investigate its occurrence as interactions at distinct body changes during exercise, using complex network models. For this, participants were submitted to four different running intensities until exhaustion, accomplished in a non-motorized treadmill using a tethered system. The intensities were selected according to critical power model. Mechanical (force, peak power, mean power, velocity and work) and physiological related parameters (heart rate, blood lactate, time until peak blood lactate concentration (lactate time), lean mass, anaerobic and aerobic capacities) and IPAQ score were obtained during exercises and it was used to construction of four complex network models. Such models have both, theoretical and mathematical value, and enables us to perceive new insights that go beyond conventional analysis. From these, we ranked the influences of each node at the fatigue process. Our results shows that nodes, links and network metrics are sensibility according to increase of efforts intensities, been the velocity a key factor to exercise maintenance at models/intensities 1 and 2 (higher time efforts) and force and power at models 3 and 4, highlighting mechanical variables in the exhaustion occurrence and even training prescription applications.

  3. Complex network models reveal correlations among network metrics, exercise intensity and role of body changes in the fatigue process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Vanessa Helena; Gama, Maria Carolina Traina; Sousa, Filipe Antônio Barros; Lewis, Theodore Gyle; Gobatto, Claudio Alexandre; Manchado-Gobatto, Fúlvia Barros

    2015-05-01

    The aims of the present study were analyze the fatigue process at distinct intensity efforts and to investigate its occurrence as interactions at distinct body changes during exercise, using complex network models. For this, participants were submitted to four different running intensities until exhaustion, accomplished in a non-motorized treadmill using a tethered system. The intensities were selected according to critical power model. Mechanical (force, peak power, mean power, velocity and work) and physiological related parameters (heart rate, blood lactate, time until peak blood lactate concentration (lactate time), lean mass, anaerobic and aerobic capacities) and IPAQ score were obtained during exercises and it was used to construction of four complex network models. Such models have both, theoretical and mathematical value, and enables us to perceive new insights that go beyond conventional analysis. From these, we ranked the influences of each node at the fatigue process. Our results shows that nodes, links and network metrics are sensibility according to increase of efforts intensities, been the velocity a key factor to exercise maintenance at models/intensities 1 and 2 (higher time efforts) and force and power at models 3 and 4, highlighting mechanical variables in the exhaustion occurrence and even training prescription applications.

  4. Vesicle Encapsulation Studies Reveal that Single Molecule Ribozyme Heterogeneities Are Intrinsic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okumus, Burak; Wilson, Timothy J.; Lilley, David M. J.; Ha, Taekjip

    2004-01-01

    Single-molecule measurements have revealed that what were assumed to be identical molecules can differ significantly in their static and dynamic properties. One of the most striking examples is the hairpin ribozyme, which was shown to exhibit two to three orders of magnitude variation in folding kinetics between molecules. Although averaged behavior of single molecules matched the bulk solution data, it was not possible to exclude rigorously the possibility that the variations around the mean values arose from different ways of interacting with the surface environment. To test this, we minimized the molecules' interaction with the surface by encapsulating DNA or RNA molecules inside 100- to 200-nm diameter unilamellar vesicles, following the procedures described by Haran and coworkers. Vesicles were immobilized on a supported lipid bilayer via biotin-streptavidin linkages. We observed no direct binding of DNA or RNA on the supported bilayer even at concentrations exceeding 100 nM, indicating that these molecules do not bind stably on the membrane. Since the vesicle diameter is smaller than the resolution of optical microscopy, the lateral mobility of the molecules is severely constrained, allowing long observation periods. We used fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, nuclease digestion, and external buffer exchange to show that the molecules were indeed encapsulated within the vesicles. When contained within vesicles, the natural form of the hairpin ribozyme exhibited 50-fold variation in both folding and unfolding rates in 0.5 mM Mg2+, which is identical to what was observed from the molecules tethered directly on the surface. This strongly indicates that the observed heterogeneity in dynamic properties does not arise as an artifact of surface attachment, but is intrinsic to the nature of the molecules. PMID:15454471

  5. LEARNING MODEL IN SCHOOL OF VOCATIONAL STUDIES

    OpenAIRE

    Bal, Pervin; Yıldırım, Osman

    2008-01-01

    In this research, it is aimed to determine which individual and environmental characteristics affecting training. Instead of both types of evaluation models, to be proactive, the evaluation of training mentioned in this research is focused on how training affects individuals. To this end, in this thesis the factors affecting to the training effectiveness were examined in regard of trainee perspectives. According to the research results, it is revealed that mostly related to the training effec...

  6. Low-resolution molecular models reveal the oligomeric state of the PPAR and the conformational organization of its domains in solution.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda Bernardes

    Full Text Available The peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs regulate genes involved in lipid and carbohydrate metabolism, and are targets of drugs approved for human use. Whereas the crystallographic structure of the complex of full length PPARγ and RXRα is known, structural alterations induced by heterodimer formation and DNA contacts are not well understood. Herein, we report a small-angle X-ray scattering analysis of the oligomeric state of hPPARγ alone and in the presence of retinoid X receptor (RXR. The results reveal that, in contrast with other studied nuclear receptors, which predominantly form dimers in solution, hPPARγ remains in the monomeric form by itself but forms heterodimers with hRXRα. The low-resolution models of hPPARγ/RXRα complexes predict significant changes in opening angle between heterodimerization partners (LBD and extended and asymmetric shape of the dimer (LBD-DBD as compared with X-ray structure of the full-length receptor bound to DNA. These differences between our SAXS models and the high-resolution crystallographic structure might suggest that there are different conformations of functional heterodimer complex in solution. Accordingly, hydrogen/deuterium exchange experiments reveal that the heterodimer binding to DNA promotes more compact and less solvent-accessible conformation of the receptor complex.

  7. Mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress and apoptosis revealed by proteomic and transcriptomic analyses of the striata in two mouse models of Parkinson’s disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chin, Mark H.; Qian, Weijun; Wang, Haixing; Petyuk, Vladislav A.; Bloom, Joshua S.; Sforza, Daniel M.; Lacan, Goran; Liu, Dahai; Khan, Arshad H.; Cantor, Rita M.; Bigelow, Diana J.; Melega, William P.; Camp, David G.; Smith, Richard D.; Smith, Desmond J.

    2008-02-10

    The molecular mechanisms underlying the changes in the nigrostriatal pathway in Parkinson disease (PD) are not completely understood. Here we use mass spectrometry and microarrays to study the proteomic and transcriptomic changes in the striatum of two mouse models of PD, induced by the distinct neurotoxins 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) and methamphetamine (METH). Proteomic analyses resulted in the identification and relative quantification of 912 proteins with two or more unique peptides and 85 proteins with significant abundance changes following neurotoxin treatment. Similarly, microarray analyses revealed 181 genes with significant changes in mRNA following neurotoxin treatment. The combined protein and gene list provides a clearer picture of the potential mechanisms underlying neurodegeneration observed in PD. Functional analysis of this combined list revealed a number of significant categories, including mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress response and apoptosis. Additionally, codon usage and miRNAs may play an important role in translational control in the striatum. These results constitute one of the largest datasets integrating protein and transcript changes for these neurotoxin models with many similar endpoint phenotypes but distinct mechanisms.

  8. Long-Term Field Study Reveals Subtle Effects of the Invasive Alga Sargassum muticum upon the Epibiota of Zostera marina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stacey DeAmicis

    Full Text Available Invasive species can alter coastal ecosystems both directly, e.g. through competition for substratum and nutrients, and indirectly. Indirect effects may be mediated by creation of dissimilar or inimical habitats, changes in predator and/or prey assemblages, alterations in associated biota, and perturbations of water movement and thermal regimes. Previous studies have shown that invasive algae can modify native habitat architecture, disrupt intricately linked food webs and alter epibiotic assemblages. In the UK, the seagrass Zostera marina supports a diverse epibiotic assemblage, influencing key factors such as sediment dynamics, depositional regime and trophic linkages. Increasing encroachment of the invasive alga Sargassum muticum into seagrass meadows changes the physical and chemical characteristics of the local environment and creates the potential for changes in the epibionts associated with the seagrass blades, threatening the integrity of the seagrass ecosystem. We investigated the effects of S. muticum invasion upon the epibiota of Z. marina in a drowned river valley in SW England seasonally from spring to autumn over four years in an in-situ manipulative experiment, comparing permanent quadrats with and without artificially introduced S. muticum. Epibiota were weighed, identified to the most detailed operational taxonomic unit (OTU possible, and unitary organisms were enumerated. Multivariate PERMANOVA+ analysis revealed significant differences in epibiont assemblages between Sargassum treatments. Linear mixed effects models indicated that differences in epibiota assemblage composition were not reflected as significant differences in mean biomass per sample, or number of epibiont OTUs per sample. We conclude that S. muticum invasion into Z. marina meadows may significantly alter the species composition and abundance distribution of epibiotic assemblages found on the blades of the seagrass. Thus S. muticum invasion could have more wide

  9. Polyphasic study of plant- and clinic-associated Pantoea agglomerans strains reveals indistinguishable virulence potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Völksch, Beate; Thon, Susanne; Jacobsen, Ilse D; Gube, Matthias

    2009-12-01

    Pantoea species are ubiquitous in nature and occasionally associated with infections caused by contaminated clinical material. Hence, Pantoea agglomerans is considered as an opportunistic pathogen of humans. Since species of the genus Pantoea and closely related species of other Enterobacteriaceae genera are phenotypically very similar, many clinical isolates are misassigned into P. agglomerans based on the use of quick commercial-offered biochemical tests. Our objective was to find markers enabling discrimination between clinical and plant isolates and to assess their virulence potential. We characterized 27 Pantoea strains, including 8 P. agglomerans isolates of clinical, and 11 of plant origin by biochemical tests and genotyping, including analysis of 16S rDNA and gapA gene sequences, and pattern polymorphisms of ITS- and ERIC/REP-DNA. All data showed that no discrete evolution occurred between plant-associated and clinical P. agglomerans isolates. Based on the typing results, five clinical- and five plant-associated P. agglomerans strains representing the majority of clades were tested on a model plant and in embryonated eggs. On soybean plants P. agglomerans strains independent of their origin could develop stable epiphytic populations. Surprisingly, in the embryonated egg model there was no difference of virulence between clinical and vegetable P. agglomerans isolates. However, these strains were significantly less virulent than a phytopathogenic P. ananatis isolate. We suggest that, independent of their origin, all P. agglomerans strains might possess indistinguishable virulence potential.

  10. Computational Approaches for Revealing the Structure of Membrane Transporters: Case Study on Bilitranslocase

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katja Venko

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The structural and functional details of transmembrane proteins are vastly underexplored, mostly due to experimental difficulties regarding their solubility and stability. Currently, the majority of transmembrane protein structures are still unknown and this present a huge experimental and computational challenge. Nowadays, thanks to X-ray crystallography or NMR spectroscopy over 3000 structures of membrane proteins have been solved, among them only a few hundred unique ones. Due to the vast biological and pharmaceutical interest in the elucidation of the structure and the functional mechanisms of transmembrane proteins, several computational methods have been developed to overcome the experimental gap. If combined with experimental data the computational information enables rapid, low cost and successful predictions of the molecular structure of unsolved proteins. The reliability of the predictions depends on the availability and accuracy of experimental data associated with structural information. In this review, the following methods are proposed for in silico structure elucidation: sequence-dependent predictions of transmembrane regions, predictions of transmembrane helix–helix interactions, helix arrangements in membrane models, and testing their stability with molecular dynamics simulations. We also demonstrate the usage of the computational methods listed above by proposing a model for the molecular structure of the transmembrane protein bilitranslocase. Bilitranslocase is bilirubin membrane transporter, which shares similar tissue distribution and functional properties with some of the members of the Organic Anion Transporter family and is the only member classified in the Bilirubin Transporter Family. Regarding its unique properties, bilitranslocase is a potentially interesting drug target.

  11. Analysis of the Serotonergic System in a Mouse Model of Rett Syndrome Reveals Unusual Upregulation of Serotonin Receptor 5b.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogelgesang, Steffen; Niebert, Sabine; Renner, Ute; Möbius, Wiebke; Hülsmann, Swen; Manzke, Till; Niebert, Marcus

    2017-01-01

    Mutations in the transcription factor methyl-CpG-binding-protein 2 (MeCP2) cause a delayed-onset neurodevelopmental disorder known as Rett syndrome (RTT). Although alteration in serotonin levels have been reported in RTT patients, the molecular mechanisms underlying these defects are not well understood. Therefore, we chose to investigate the serotonergic system in hippocampus and brainstem of male Mecp2 -/y knock-out mice in the B6.129P2(C)-Mecp2(tm1.1Bird) mouse model of RTT. The serotonergic system in mouse is comprised of 16 genes, whose mRNA expression profile was analyzed by quantitative RT-PCR. Mecp2 -/y mice are an established animal model for RTT displaying most of the cognitive and physical impairments of human patients and the selected areas receive significant modulation through serotonin. Using anatomically and functional characterized areas, we found region-specific differential expression between wild type and Mecp2 -/y mice at post-natal day 40. In brainstem, we found five genes to be dysregulated, while in hippocampus, two genes were dysregulated. The one gene dysregulated in both brain regions was dopamine decarboxylase, but of special interest is the serotonin receptor 5b (5-ht 5b ), which showed 75-fold dysregulation in brainstem of Mecp2 -/y mice. This dysregulation was not due to upregulation, but due to failure of down-regulation in Mecp2 -/y mice during development. Detailed analysis of 5-ht 5b revealed a receptor that localizes to endosomes and interacts with G αi proteins.

  12. A novel approach to PTSD modeling in rats reveals alternating patterns of limbic activity in different types of stress reaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritov, G; Boltyansky, B; Richter-Levin, G

    2016-05-01

    Human reactions to trauma exposure are extremely diverse, with some individuals exhibiting only time-limited distress and others qualifying for posttraumatic stress disorder diagnosis (PTSD). Furthermore, whereas most PTSD patients mainly display fear-based symptoms, a minority of patients display a co-morbid anhedonic phenotype. We employed an individual profiling approach to model these intriguing facets of the psychiatric condition in underwater-trauma exposed rats. Based on long-term assessments of anxiety-like and anhedonic behaviors, our analysis uncovered three separate phenotypes of stress response; an anxious, fear-based (38%), a co-morbid, fear-anhedonic (15%), and an exposed-unaffected group (47%). Immunohistochemical assessments for cellular activation (c-Fos) and activation of inhibition (c-Fos+GAD67) revealed a differential involvement of limbic regions and distinct co-activity patterns for each of these phenotypes, validating the behavioral categorization. In accordance with recent neurocognitive hypotheses for posttraumatic depression, we show that enhanced pretrauma anxiety predicts the progression of posttraumatic anhedonia only in the fear-anhedonic phenotype.

  13. Modeling human Coenzyme A synthase mutation in yeast reveals altered mitochondrial function, lipid content and iron metabolism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camilla Ceccatelli Berti

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Mutations in nuclear genes associated with defective coenzyme A biosynthesis have been identified as responsible for some forms of neurodegeneration with brain iron accumulation (NBIA, namely PKAN and CoPAN. PKAN are defined by mutations in PANK2, encoding the pantothenate kinase 2 enzyme, that account for about 50% of cases of NBIA, whereas mutations in CoA synthase COASY have been recently reported as the second inborn error of CoA synthesis leading to CoPAN. As reported previously, yeast cells expressing the pathogenic mutation exhibited a temperature-sensitive growth defect in the absence of pantothenate and a reduced CoA content. Additional characterization revealed decreased oxygen consumption, reduced activities of mitochondrial respiratory complexes, higher iron content, increased sensitivity to oxidative stress and reduced amount of lipid droplets, thus partially recapitulating the phenotypes found in patients and establishing yeast as a potential model to clarify the pathogenesis underlying PKAN and CoPAN diseases.

  14. Comprehensive analysis of ultrasonic vocalizations in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome reveals limited, call type specific deficits.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Snigdha Roy

    Full Text Available Fragile X syndrome (FXS is a well-recognized form of inherited mental retardation, caused by a mutation in the fragile X mental retardation 1 (Fmr1 gene. The gene is located on the long arm of the X chromosome and encodes fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP. Absence of FMRP in fragile X patients as well as in Fmr1 knockout (KO mice results, among other changes, in abnormal dendritic spine formation and altered synaptic plasticity in the neocortex and hippocampus. Clinical features of FXS include cognitive impairment, anxiety, abnormal social interaction, mental retardation, motor coordination and speech articulation deficits. Mouse pups generate ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs when isolated from their mothers. Whether those social ultrasonic vocalizations are deficient in mouse models of FXS is unknown. Here we compared isolation-induced USVs generated by pups of Fmr1-KO mice with those of their wild type (WT littermates. Though the total number of calls was not significantly different between genotypes, a detailed analysis of 10 different categories of calls revealed that loss of Fmr1 expression in mice causes limited and call-type specific deficits in ultrasonic vocalization: the carrier frequency of flat calls was higher, the percentage of downward calls was lower and that the frequency range of complex calls was wider in Fmr1-KO mice compared to their WT littermates.

  15. Expression profiling of a genetic animal model of depression reveals novel molecular pathways underlying depressive-like behaviours.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ekaterini Blaveri

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available The Flinders model is a validated genetic rat model of depression that exhibits a number of behavioural, neurochemical and pharmacological features consistent with those observed in human depression.In this study we have used genome-wide microarray expression profiling of the hippocampus and prefrontal/frontal cortex of Flinders Depression Sensitive (FSL and control Flinders Depression Resistant (FRL lines to understand molecular basis for the differences between the two lines. We profiled two independent cohorts of Flinders animals derived from the same colony six months apart, each cohort statistically powered to allow independent as well as combined analysis. Using this approach, we were able to validate using real-time-PCR a core set of gene expression differences that showed statistical significance in each of the temporally distinct cohorts, representing consistently maintained features of the model. Small but statistically significant increases were confirmed for cholinergic (chrm2, chrna7 and serotonergic receptors (Htr1a, Htr2a in FSL rats consistent with known neurochemical changes in the model. Much larger gene changes were validated in a number of novel genes as exemplified by TMEM176A, which showed 35-fold enrichment in the cortex and 30-fold enrichment in hippocampus of FRL animals relative to FSL.These data provide significant insights into the molecular differences underlying the Flinders model, and have potential relevance to broader depression research.

  16. The shady past of female boxers – what case studies in the USA reveal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pfister, Gertrud Ursula; Gems, Gerald

    2017-01-01

    This study attempts to rectify the invisibility of female boxers and to narrow a research gap by examining the careers of four prominent female champions who managed to excel in the sport despite the social, psychological and physical restrictions imposed by the gender order of American society...... in the nineteenth century. The little studied roles of female boxers present some historiographical issues detailed in the study, which examines and analyses the social construction of gender, and the rejection of prescribed roles by the female boxers, who used the vaudeville and theatrical stages to negotiate...

  17. Finding Order in Randomness: Single-Molecule Studies Reveal Stochastic RNA Processing | Center for Cancer Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Producing a functional eukaryotic messenger RNA (mRNA) requires the coordinated activity of several large protein complexes to initiate transcription, elongate nascent transcripts, splice together exons, and cleave and polyadenylate the 3’ end. Kinetic competition between these various processes has been proposed to regulate mRNA maturation, but this model could lead to multiple, randomly determined, or stochastic, pathways or outcomes. Regulatory checkpoints have been suggested as a means of ensuring quality control. However, current methods have been unable to tease apart the contributions of these processes at a single gene or on a time scale that could provide mechanistic insight. To begin to investigate the kinetic relationship between transcription and splicing, Daniel Larson, Ph.D., of CCR’s Laboratory of Receptor Biology and Gene Expression, and his colleagues employed a single-molecule RNA imaging approach to monitor production and processing of a human β-globin reporter gene in living cells.

  18. Rat models of 17β-estradiol-induced mammary cancer reveal novel insights into breast cancer etiology and prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shull, James D; Dennison, Kirsten L; Chack, Aaron C; Trentham-Dietz, Amy

    2018-03-01

    Numerous laboratory and epidemiologic studies strongly implicate endogenous and exogenous estrogens in the etiology of breast cancer. Data summarized herein suggest that the ACI rat model of 17β-estradiol (E2)-induced mammary cancer is unique among rodent models in the extent to which it faithfully reflects the etiology and biology of luminal types of breast cancer, which together constitute ~70% of all breast cancers. E2 drives cancer development in this model through mechanisms that are largely dependent upon estrogen receptors and require progesterone and its receptors. Moreover, mammary cancer development appears to be associated with generation of oxidative stress and can be modified by multiple dietary factors, several of which may attenuate the actions of reactive oxygen species. Studies of susceptible ACI rats and resistant COP or BN rats provide novel insights into the genetic bases of susceptibility and the biological processes regulated by genetic determinants of susceptibility. This review summarizes research progress resulting from use of these physiologically relevant rat models to advance understanding of breast cancer etiology and prevention.

  19. Comparative analyses reveal potential uses of Brachypodium distachyon as a model for cold stress responses in temperate grasses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Chuan

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Little is known about the potential of Brachypodium distachyon as a model for low temperature stress responses in Pooideae. The ice recrystallization inhibition protein (IRIP genes, fructosyltransferase (FST genes, and many C-repeat binding factor (CBF genes are Pooideae specific and important in low temperature responses. Here we used comparative analyses to study conservation and evolution of these gene families in B. distachyon to better understand its potential as a model species for agriculturally important temperate grasses. Results Brachypodium distachyon contains cold responsive IRIP genes which have evolved through Brachypodium specific gene family expansions. A large cold responsive CBF3 subfamily was identified in B. distachyon, while CBF4 homologs are absent from the genome. No B. distachyon FST gene homologs encode typical core Pooideae FST-motifs and low temperature induced fructan accumulation was dramatically different in B. distachyon compared to core Pooideae species. Conclusions We conclude that B. distachyon can serve as an interesting model for specific molecular mechanisms involved in low temperature responses in core Pooideae species. However, the evolutionary history of key genes involved in low temperature responses has been different in Brachypodium and core Pooideae species. These differences limit the use of B. distachyon as a model for holistic studies relevant for agricultural core Pooideae species.

  20. Genome-Wide Association Study Reveals Multiple Loci Associated with Primary Tooth Development during Infancy

    OpenAIRE

    Pillas, Demetris; Hoggart, Clive J.; Evans, David M.; O'Reilly, Paul F.; Sipil?, Kirsi; L?hdesm?ki, Raija; Millwood, Iona Y.; Kaakinen, Marika; Netuveli, Gopalakrishnan; Blane, David; Charoen, Pimphen; Sovio, Ulla; Pouta, Anneli; Freimer, Nelson; Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa

    2010-01-01

    Author Summary Genome-wide association studies have been used to identify genetic variants conferring susceptibility to diseases, intermediate phenotypes, and physiological traits such as height, hair color, and age at menarche. Here we analyze the NFBC1966 and ALSPAC birth cohorts to investigate the genetic determinants of a key developmental process: primary tooth development. The prospective nature of our studies allows us to exploit accurate measurements of age at first tooth eruption and...

  1. Multi-study integration of brain cancer transcriptomes reveals organ-level molecular signatures.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaeyun Sung

    Full Text Available We utilized abundant transcriptomic data for the primary classes of brain cancers to study the feasibility of separating all of these diseases simultaneously based on molecular data alone. These signatures were based on a new method reported herein--Identification of Structured Signatures and Classifiers (ISSAC--that resulted in a brain cancer marker panel of 44 unique genes. Many of these genes have established relevance to the brain cancers examined herein, with others having known roles in cancer biology. Analyses on large-scale data from multiple sources must deal with significant challenges associated with heterogeneity between different published studies, for it was observed that the variation among individual studies often had a larger effect on the transcriptome than did phenotype differences, as is typical. For this reason, we restricted ourselves to studying only cases where we had at least two independent studies performed for each phenotype, and also reprocessed all the raw data from the studies using a unified pre-processing pipeline. We found that learning signatures across multiple datasets greatly enhanced reproducibility and accuracy in predictive performance on truly independent validation sets, even when keeping the size of the training set the same. This was most likely due to the meta-signature encompassing more of the heterogeneity across different sources and conditions, while amplifying signal from the repeated global characteristics of the phenotype. When molecular signatures of brain cancers were constructed from all currently available microarray data, 90% phenotype prediction accuracy, or the accuracy of identifying a particular brain cancer from the background of all phenotypes, was found. Looking forward, we discuss our approach in the context of the eventual development of organ-specific molecular signatures from peripheral fluids such as the blood.

  2. Omic studies reveal the pathogenic lipid droplet proteins in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xuelin Zhang

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD is an epidemic metabolic condition driven by an underlying lipid homeostasis disorder. The lipid droplet (LD, the main organelle involved in neutral lipid storage and hydrolysis, is a potential target for NAFLD therapeutic treatment. In this review, we summarize recent progress elucidating the connections between LD-associated proteins and NAFLD found by genome-wide association studies (GWAS, genomic and proteomic studies. Finally, we discuss a possible mechanism by which the protein 17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 13 (17β-HSD13 may promote the development of NAFLD.

  3. Integrative proteomic analysis of the NMDA NR1 knockdown mouse model reveals effects on central and peripheral pathways associated with schizophrenia and autism spectrum disorders

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    H. Wesseling (Hendrik); P.C. Guest (Paul); C.-M. Lee (Chi-Ming); E.H.F. Wong (Erik); H. Rahmoune (Hassan); S. Bahn (Sabine)

    2014-01-01

    textabstractBackground: Over the last decade, the transgenic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) NR1-knockdown mouse (NR1neo-/-) has been investigated as a glutamate hypofunction model for schizophrenia. Recent research has now revealed that the model also recapitulates cognitive and negative

  4. A genome-wide association study reveals variants in ARL15 that influence adiponectin levels

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J.B. Richards (Brent); D. Waterworth (Dawn); S. O'Rahilly (Stephen); M.-F. Hivert (Marie-France); R.J.F. Loos (Ruth); J.R.B. Perry (John); T. Tanaka (Toshiko); N.J. Timpson (Nicholas); R.K. Semple (Robert); N. Soranzo (Nicole); K. Song (Kijoung); N. Rocha (Nuno); E. Grundberg (Elin); J. Dupuis (Josée); J.C. Florez (Jose); C. Langenberg (Claudia); I. Prokopenko (Inga); R. Saxena (Richa); R. Sladek (Rob); Y.S. Aulchenko (Yurii); D.M. Evans (David); G. Waeber (Gérard); M.S. Burnett; N. Sattar (Naveed); J. Devaney (Joseph); C. Willenborg (Christina); A. Hingorani (Aroon); J.C.M. Witteman (Jacqueline); P. Vollenweider (Peter); B. Glaser (Beate); C. Hengstenberg (Christian); L. Ferrucci (Luigi); D. Melzer (David); K. Stark (Klaus); J. Deanfield (John); J. Winogradow (Janina); M. Grassl (Martina); A.S. Hall (Alistair); J.M. Egan (Josephine); J.R. Thompson (John); S.L. Ricketts (Sally); I.R. König (Inke); W. Reinhard (Wibke); S.M. Grundy (Scott); H.E. Wichmann (Heinz Erich); P. Barter (Phil); R. Mahley (Robert); Y.A. Kesaniemi (Antero); D.J. Rader (Daniel); M.P. Reilly (Muredach); S.E. Epstein (Stephen); A.F.R. Stewart (Alexandre); P. Tikka-Kleemola (Päivi); H. Schunkert (Heribert); K.A. Burling (Keith); J. Erdmann (Jeanette); P. Deloukas (Panagiotis); T. Pastinen (Tomi); N.J. Samani (Nilesh); R. McPherson (Ruth); G.D. Smith; T.M. Frayling (Timothy); N.J. Wareham (Nick); J.B. Meigs (James); V. Mooser (Vincent); T.D. Spector (Tim)

    2009-01-01

    textabstractThe adipocyte-derived protein adiponectin is highly heritable and inversely associated with risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D) and coronary heart disease (CHD). We meta-analyzed 3 genome-wide association studies for circulating adiponectin levels (n = 8,531) and sought validation of

  5. How Can We Explain Poverty? Case Study of Dee Reveals the Complexities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seccombe, Karen

    2011-01-01

    Many theories have been offered to explain why people are impoverished. This article by Karen Seccombe uses the case study of "Dee," a newly single mother, to explore four of the most common: individualism, social structuralism, the culture of poverty, and fatalism. She concludes that poverty is a highly complex phenomenon, and it is likely that…

  6. Cerebrovascular accident and abnormal focus of hyperactivity revealed by dynamic study in scintiangioencephalography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Planchon, C.A.; Perez, R.; Lebourges, J.

    1980-01-01

    A 75-year-old female was admitted to the hospital for suspicion of a cerebrovascular accident. An important focus of hyperactivity was noted during a dynamic study by scintiangioencephalography, consistent with a highly vascular tumor, but corresponding in fact to a focal transitory hyperfusion with accompanying intense neuronal activity. (orig.)

  7. The neural substrates of script knowledge deficits as revealed by a PET study in Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Allain, P.; Gaura, V.; Fasotti, L.; Chauvire, V.; Prundean, A.; Sherer-Gagou, C.; Bonneau, D.; Bachoud-Levi, A.C.; Dubas, F.; Remy, P.; Verny, C.

    2011-01-01

    Introduction Previous neuropsychological investigations have suggested that both the prefrontal cortex and the basal ganglia are involved in the management of script event knowledge required in planning behavior. Methods This study was designated to map, the correlations between resting-state brain

  8. A Qualitative Study Revealing the Relationship Between Cultural Indicators and Attitudes Toward the Ads

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emine Sahin

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The companies, in International markets, are required to examine the attitudes and the behaviours to recognize the consumer to be able to make their products preferable under constantly growing competitive conditions. Therefore, it is of great importance to know cultural values of the customers in the country's where global brands compete and to shape ads which is one of the marketing communication tools in this direction. In this respect, knowing the cultural similarities or differences of the countries where the ads are used (such as that country's religion, language, norms and cultural values gains importance. The consumer attitudes towards the ads change in accordance with their cultural similarities or dissimilarities and this attitude change determines the tendency of shopping. According to Geert Hofstede, social anthropologist who analyzes the cultural levels and the relationships among them the basic elements of the culture consists of symbols, heroes, rituals and values underlying them. Thorough symbols, a number of cultural values are conveyed to ads. The problem of this study which was carried out in order to determine attitude change towards the ads including cultural differences is “Is there a difference in the attitudes towards the ads including different cultural symbols? How it is distributed according to gender differences?" In this study, a qualitative research method was applied and interviewed with 20 test subject. 20 students studying in one of the universities in Turkey were selected with formal sampling, they were asked questions, and it was tried to determine the difference between the ad of Doğuş Çay-a tea brand which uses the symbols and local accent of Black sea region in Turkey in its ads- and the ad of Lipton which is an international British tea brand. At the end of the study, it was found out that sample’s the attitude was positive towards ad of Doğuş Çay, not Lipton.

  9. Continuous acoustic studies of overwintering sprat Sprattus sprattus reveal flexible behavior

    KAUST Repository

    Solberg, I

    2012-09-19

    The clupeid fish Sprattus sprattus was studied in a 150 m deep Norwegian fjord throughout an entire overwintering period during which the fjord froze over and a major water renewal occurred. A bottom-mounted (upward-facing) echosounder provided continuous high-resolution data and enabled studies of swimming speed and behavior of individual sprat in addition to population behavior. The continuous acoustic studies were supplemented with intermittent field campaigns. The sprat displayed different behavioral modes with changing environmental conditions. During the first part of the winter, the majority of the population occurred in deep waters during both day and night, yet exhibited a shallower night-time distribution. Individual sprat swam alternately up and down, a ‘rise and sink’ behavior likely a compensation for negative buoyancy because of swim bladder compression. Because feeding was negligible in deep waters, the swimming pattern was not inferred as prey search behavior. Another part of the population schooled at shallower depths during the day and carried out vertical migration to upper waters at night. However, individuals were observed as they switched between these behavioral groups. A sudden change in both swimming behavior and vertical distribution occurred as the fjord became ice covered. Near-bottom ‘rise and sink’ swimming was replaced by schooling in mid-water during the day, and the sprat aggregated in dense layers near the surface at night. We suggest that the ice made the sprat shift their antipredator strategy from hiding at depth to hiding in schools in the darker waters below the ice. This long-term acoustic study has shown that sprat have a flexible behavioral repertoire, displaying different overwintering strategies within a population, depending on environmental conditions.

  10. Attitude towards computer-based learning: determinants as revealed by a controlled interventional study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hahne, Amina Katharina; Benndorf, Ralf; Frey, Peter; Herzig, Stefan

    2005-09-01

    Curriculum-wide implementation of computer-based learning (CBL) in undergraduate medical education remains elusive. Unlike many pilot tests of singular learning programmes, dropout rates are high and acceptance seems low in the long run. We studied the effect of a new CBL programme, suitable for curriculum-wide implementation, on Year 3 medical students' attitudes towards CBL. Students from 2 universities participating in a mandatory pharmacology course were given access to a CBL programme covering cardiovascular drug therapy in a controlled randomised study (n = 167). Learner properties and attitude towards CBL were measured using psychometric scales, and knowledge by multiple-choice questions (pre- and post-test). Attitude towards CBL worsened in the CBL group (n = 70). Individual learners' properties did not explain this effect. The perceived programme quality was rated only 'average', which may contribute to the lower post-test values of attitude towards CBL. Learning outcomes were similar between the control group (n = 97) and students using CBL (n = 44). Learning efforts were shifted from self-study towards CBL. The initial enthusiasm of students was not maintained when using a programme designed to complement or even replace traditional teaching. Curriculum-wide implementation of CBL might be hampered by the discouragement of users.

  11. Effective binding of perhalogenated closo-borates to serum albumins revealed by spectroscopic and ITC studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuperman, Marina V.; Losytskyy, Mykhaylo Yu.; Bykov, Alexander Yu.; Yarmoluk, Sergiy M.; Zhizhin, Konstantin Yu.; Kuznetsov, Nikolay T.; Varzatskii, Oleg A.; Gumienna-Kontecka, Elzbieta; Kovalska, Vladyslava B.

    2017-08-01

    The interactions of boron cluster compounds closo-borates with biomolecules are widely studied due to their efficiency as agents for boron neutron capture therapy of cancer. In present work the binding abilities of anionic halogen closo-borates [B10Hal10]2- (Hal = Cl, Br, I) and [B12Hal12]2- (Hal = Cl, I) towards bovine and human serum albumins were investigated by spectroscopic and isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) methods. The protein fluorescence quenching method and ITC studies confirmed the complex formation. The degree of protein fluorescence quenching increased from chlorine to iodine boron derivatives that is attributed to external heavy atom effect. The ITC data point on the existence in the protein structure of two types of binding sites: with higher and lower affinity to closo-borates. Albumin-closo-borate complex binding ratio, n (4-5 anions per protein molecule) is higher than for the parent hydrogen closo-borates (2 anions per protein molecule). Binding constants estimated by fluorescent and ITC methods indicate higher affinity of halogen closo-borates to albumins (K in the range of 104-106 M-1) comparing to that of the hydrogen closo-borate (K about 103 M-1). Due to their high affinity and high binding ratio to albumins halogen closo-borates are proposed for further studies as agents for boron neutron capture therapy.

  12. A general model of distant hybridization reveals the conditions for extinction in Atlantic salmon and brown trout.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudio S Quilodrán

    Full Text Available Interspecific hybridization is common in nature but can be increased in frequency or even originated by human actions, such as species introduction or habitat modification, which may threaten species persistence. When hybridization occurs between distantly related species, referred to as "distant hybridization," the resulting hybrids are generally infertile or fertile but do not undergo chromosomal recombination during gametogenesis. Here, we present a model describing this frequent but poorly studied interspecific hybridization to assess its consequences on parental species and to anticipate the conditions under which they can reach extinction. Our general model fully incorporates three important processes: density-dependent competition, dominance/recessivity inheritance of traits and assortative mating. We demonstrate its use and flexibility by assessing population extinction risk between Atlantic salmon and brown trout in Norway, whose interbreeding has recently increased due to farmed fish releases into the wild. We identified the set of conditions under which hybridization may threaten salmonid species. Thanks to the flexibility of our model, we evaluated the effect of an additional risk factor, a parasitic disease, and showed that the cumulative effects dramatically increase the extinction risk. The consequences of distant hybridization are not genetically, but demographically mediated. Our general model is useful to better comprehend the evolution of such hybrid systems and we demonstrated its importance in the field of conservation biology to set up management recommendations when this increasingly frequent type of hybridization is in action.

  13. High-speed video gait analysis reveals early and characteristic locomotor phenotypes in mouse models of neurodegenerative movement disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Preisig, Daniel F; Kulic, Luka; Krüger, Maik; Wirth, Fabian; McAfoose, Jordan; Späni, Claudia; Gantenbein, Pascal; Derungs, Rebecca; Nitsch, Roger M; Welt, Tobias

    2016-09-15

    Neurodegenerative diseases of the central nervous system frequently affect the locomotor system resulting in impaired movement and gait. In this study we performed a whole-body high-speed video gait analysis in three different mouse lines of neurodegenerative movement disorders to investigate the motor phenotype. Based on precise computerized motion tracking of all relevant joints and the tail, a custom-developed algorithm generated individual and comprehensive locomotor profiles consisting of 164 spatial and temporal parameters. Gait changes observed in the three models corresponded closely to the classical clinical symptoms described in these disorders: Muscle atrophy due to motor neuron loss in SOD1 G93A transgenic mice led to gait characterized by changes in hind-limb movement and positioning. In contrast, locomotion in huntingtin N171-82Q mice modeling Huntington's disease with basal ganglia damage was defined by hyperkinetic limb movements and rigidity of the trunk. Harlequin mutant mice modeling cerebellar degeneration showed gait instability and extensive changes in limb positioning. Moreover, model specific gait parameters were identified and were shown to be more sensitive than conventional motor tests. Altogether, this technique provides new opportunities to decipher underlying disease mechanisms and test novel therapeutic approaches. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Rumor Propagation Model: An Equilibrium Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José Roberto C. Piqueira

    2010-01-01

    information is analogous phenomena. Here, in an analogy with the SIR (Susceptible-Infected-Removed epidemiological model, the ISS (Ignorant-Spreader-Stifler rumor spreading model is studied. By using concepts from the Dynamical Systems Theory, stability of equilibrium points is established, according to propagation parameters and initial conditions. Some numerical experiments are conducted in order to validate the model.

  15. A Systematic Review of Studies on Leadership Models in Educational Research from 1980 to 2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gumus, Sedat; Bellibas, Mehmet Sukru; Esen, Murat; Gumus, Emine

    2018-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to reveal the extent to which different leadership models in education are studied, including the change in the trends of research on each model over time, the most prominent scholars working on each model, and the countries in which the articles are based. The analysis of the related literature was conducted by first…

  16. Calpain 12 Function Revealed through the Study of an Atypical Case of Autosomal Recessive Congenital Ichthyosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bochner, Ron; Samuelov, Liat; Sarig, Ofer; Li, Qiaoli; Adase, Christopher A; Isakov, Ofer; Malchin, Natalia; Vodo, Dan; Shayevitch, Ronna; Peled, Alon; Yu, Benjamin D; Fainberg, Gilad; Warshauer, Emily; Adir, Noam; Erez, Noam; Gat, Andrea; Gottlieb, Yehonatan; Rogers, Tova; Pavlovsky, Mor; Goldberg, Ilan; Shomron, Noam; Sandilands, Aileen; Campbell, Linda E; MacCallum, Stephanie; McLean, W H Irwin; Ast, Gil; Gallo, Richard L; Uitto, Jouni; Sprecher, Eli

    2017-02-01

    Congenital erythroderma is a rare and often life-threatening condition, which has been shown to result from mutations in several genes encoding important components of the epidermal differentiation program. Using whole exome sequencing, we identified in a child with congenital exfoliative erythroderma, hypotrichosis, severe nail dystrophy and failure to thrive, two heterozygous mutations in ABCA12 (c.2956C>T, p.R986W; c.5778+2T>C, p. G1900Mfs*16), a gene known to be associated with two forms of ichthyosis, autosomal recessive congenital ichthyosis, and harlequin ichthyosis. Because the patient displayed an atypical phenotype, including severe hair and nail manifestations, we scrutinized the exome sequencing data for additional potentially deleterious genetic variations in genes of relevance to the cornification process. Two mutations were identified in CAPN12, encoding a member of the calpain proteases: a paternal missense mutation (c.1511C>A; p.P504Q) and a maternal deletion due to activation of a cryptic splice site in exon 9 of the gene (c.1090_1129del; p.Val364Lysfs*11). The calpain 12 protein was found to be expressed in both the epidermis and hair follicle of normal skin, but its expression was dramatically reduced in the patient's skin. The downregulation of capn12 expression in zebrafish was associated with abnormal epidermal morphogenesis. Small interfering RNA knockdown of CAPN12 in three-dimensional human skin models was associated with acanthosis, disorganized epidermal architecture, and downregulation of several differentiation markers, including filaggrin. Accordingly, filaggrin expression was almost absent in the patient skin. Using ex vivo live imaging, small interfering RNA knockdown of calpain 12 in skin from K14-H2B GFP mice led to significant hair follicle catagen transformation compared with controls. In summary, our results indicate that calpain 12 plays an essential role during epidermal ontogenesis and normal hair follicle cycling and that

  17. Significant Locus and Metabolic Genetic Correlations Revealed in Genome-Wide Association Study of Anorexia Nervosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duncan, Laramie; Yilmaz, Zeynep; Gaspar, Helena; Walters, Raymond; Goldstein, Jackie; Anttila, Verneri; Bulik-Sullivan, Brendan; Ripke, Stephan; Thornton, Laura; Hinney, Anke; Daly, Mark; Sullivan, Patrick F; Zeggini, Eleftheria; Breen, Gerome; Bulik, Cynthia M

    2017-09-01

    The authors conducted a genome-wide association study of anorexia nervosa and calculated genetic correlations with a series of psychiatric, educational, and metabolic phenotypes. Following uniform quality control and imputation procedures using the 1000 Genomes Project (phase 3) in 12 case-control cohorts comprising 3,495 anorexia nervosa cases and 10,982 controls, the authors performed standard association analysis followed by a meta-analysis across cohorts. Linkage disequilibrium score regression was used to calculate genome-wide common variant heritability (single-nucleotide polymorphism [SNP]-based heritability [h 2 SNP ]), partitioned heritability, and genetic correlations (r g ) between anorexia nervosa and 159 other phenotypes. Results were obtained for 10,641,224 SNPs and insertion-deletion variants with minor allele frequencies >1% and imputation quality scores >0.6. The h 2 SNP of anorexia nervosa was 0.20 (SE=0.02), suggesting that a substantial fraction of the twin-based heritability arises from common genetic variation. The authors identified one genome-wide significant locus on chromosome 12 (rs4622308) in a region harboring a previously reported type 1 diabetes and autoimmune disorder locus. Significant positive genetic correlations were observed between anorexia nervosa and schizophrenia, neuroticism, educational attainment, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and significant negative genetic correlations were observed between anorexia nervosa and body mass index, insulin, glucose, and lipid phenotypes. Anorexia nervosa is a complex heritable phenotype for which this study has uncovered the first genome-wide significant locus. Anorexia nervosa also has large and significant genetic correlations with both psychiatric phenotypes and metabolic traits. The study results encourage a reconceptualization of this frequently lethal disorder as one with both psychiatric and metabolic etiology.

  18. Comparative structural and enzymatic studies on Salmonella typhimurium diaminopropionate ammonia lyase reveal its unique features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deka, G; Bisht, S; Savithri, H S; Murthy, M R N

    2018-05-01

    Cellular metabolism of amino acids is controlled by a large number of pyridoxal 5'-phosphate (PLP) dependent enzymes. Diaminopropionate ammonia lyase (DAPAL), a fold type II PLP-dependent enzyme, degrades both the D and L forms of diaminopropionic acid (DAP) to pyruvate and ammonia. Earlier studies on the Escherichia coli DAPAL (EcDAPAL) had suggested that a disulfide bond located close to the active site may be crucial for maintaining the geometry of the substrate entry channel and the active site. In order to obtain further insights into the catalytic properties of DAPAL, structural and functional studies on Salmonella typhimurium DAPAL (StDAPAL) were initiated. The three-dimensional X-ray crystal structure of StDAPAL was determined at 2.5 Å resolution. As expected, the polypeptide fold and dimeric organization of StDAPAL is similar to those of EcDAPAL. A phosphate group was located in the active site of StDAPAL and expulsion of this phosphate is probably essential to bring Asp125 to a conformation suitable for proton abstraction from the substrate (D-DAP). The unique disulfide bond of EcDAPAL was absent in StDAPAL, although the enzyme displayed comparable catalytic activity. Site directed mutagenesis of the cysteine residues involved in disulfide bond formation in EcDAPAL followed by functional and biophysical studies further confirmed that the disulfide bond is not necessary either for substrate binding or for catalysis. The activity of StDAPAL but not EcDAPAL was enhanced by monovalent cations suggesting subtle differences in the active site geometries of these two closely related enzymes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. In vitro studies reveal antiurolithic effect of Terminalia arjuna using quantitative morphological information from computerized microscopy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Mittal

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Purpose: For most cases, urolithiasis is a condition where excessive oxalate is present in the urine. Many reports have documented free radical generation followed by hyperoxaluria as a consequence of which calcium oxalate (CaOx deposition occurs in the kidney tissue. The present study is aimed to exam the antilithiatic potency of the aqueous extract (AE of Terminalia arjuna (T. arjuna. Materials and Methods: The antilithiatic activity of Terminalia arjuna was investigated in vitro nucleation, aggregation and growth of the CaOx crystals as well as the morphology of CaOx crystals using the inbuilt software ‘Image-Pro Plus 7.0’ of Olympus upright microscope (BX53. Antioxidant activity of AE of Terminalia arjuna bark was also determined in vitro. Results: Terminalia arjuna extract exhibited a concentration dependent inhibition of nucleation and aggregation of CaOx crystals. The AE of Terminalia arjuna bark also inhibited the growth of CaOx crystals. At the same time, the AE also modified the morphology of CaOx crystals from hexagonal to spherical shape with increasing concentrations of AE and reduced the dimensions such as area, perimeter, length and width of CaOx crystals in a dose dependent manner. Also, the Terminalia arjuna AE scavenged the DPPH (2, 2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl radicals with an IC50 at 13.1µg/mL. Conclusions: The study suggests that Terminalia arjuna bark has the potential to scavenge DPPH radicals and inhibit CaOx crystallization in vitro. In the light of these studies, Terminalia arjuna can be regarded as a promising candidate from natural plant sources of antilithiatic and antioxidant activity with high value.

  20. Earthquake studies reveal the magmatic plumbing system of the Katmai volcanoes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurber, Clifford; Murphy, Rachel; Prejean, Stephanie G.; Haney, Matthew M.; Bennington, Ninfa; Powell, Lee; Paskievitch, John F.

    2012-01-01

    The 1912 eruption of Novarupta was the largest of the 1900s (Fierstein and Hildreth 2001, Hildreth et al. 2003). A century later, fundamental questions remain regarding the source of the magma for that eruption. A previous seismic study of the Katmai area (Jolly et al. 2007) identified a single large area of anomalous structure in the subsurface centered beneath Katmai Pass (Figure 2), but the magma source for the 1912 eruption is thought to have been beneath Mt. Katmai (Hildreth et al. 2003). This mystery was a prime motivation for the research project described here.

  1. RNA-Seq study reveals genetic responses of diverse wild soybean accessions to increased ozone levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waldeck, Nathan; Burkey, Kent; Carter, Thomas; Dickey, David; Song, Qijian; Taliercio, Earl

    2017-06-29

    Ozone is an air pollutant widely known to cause a decrease in productivity in many plant species, including soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr). While the response of cultivated soybean to ozone has been studied, very little information is available regarding the ozone response of its wild relatives. Ozone-resistant wild soybean accessions were identified by measuring the response of a genetically diverse group of 66 wild soybean (Glycine soja Zucc. and Sieb.) accessions to elevated ozone levels. RNA-Seq analyses were performed on leaves of different ages from selected ozone-sensitive and ozone-resistant accessions that were subjected to treatment with an environmentally relevant level of ozone. Many more genes responded to elevated ozone in the two ozone-sensitive accessions than in the ozone-resistant accessions. Analyses of the ozone response genes indicated that leaves of different ages responded differently to ozone. Older leaves displayed a consistent reduction in expression of genes involved in photosynthesis in response to ozone, while changes in expression of defense genes dominated younger leaf tissue in response to ozone. As expected, there is a substantial difference between the response of ozone-sensitive and ozone-resistant accessions. Genes associated with photosystem 2 were substantially reduced in expression in response to ozone in the ozone-resistant accessions. A decrease in peptidase inhibitors was one of several responses specific to one of the ozone resistant accessions. The decrease in expression in genes associated with photosynthesis confirms that the photosynthetic apparatus may be an early casualty in response to moderate levels of ozone. A compromise of photosynthesis would substantially impact plant growth and seed production. However, the resistant accessions may preserve their photosynthetic apparatus in response to the ozone levels used in this study. Older leaf tissue of the ozone-resistant accessions showed a unique down-regulation of

  2. Genome-Wide Association Study Reveals Multiple Loci Associated with Primary Tooth Development during Infancy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sipilä, Kirsi; Lähdesmäki, Raija; Millwood, Iona Y.; Kaakinen, Marika; Netuveli, Gopalakrishnan; Blane, David; Charoen, Pimphen; Sovio, Ulla; Pouta, Anneli; Freimer, Nelson; Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa; Laitinen, Jaana; Vaara, Sarianna; Glaser, Beate; Crawford, Peter; Timpson, Nicholas J.; Ring, Susan M.; Deng, Guohong; Zhang, Weihua; McCarthy, Mark I.; Deloukas, Panos; Peltonen, Leena

    2010-01-01

    Tooth development is a highly heritable process which relates to other growth and developmental processes, and which interacts with the development of the entire craniofacial complex. Abnormalities of tooth development are common, with tooth agenesis being the most common developmental anomaly in humans. We performed a genome-wide association study of time to first tooth eruption and number of teeth at one year in 4,564 individuals from the 1966 Northern Finland Birth Cohort (NFBC1966) and 1,518 individuals from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC). We identified 5 loci at P<5×10−8, and 5 with suggestive association (P<5×10−6). The loci included several genes with links to tooth and other organ development (KCNJ2, EDA, HOXB2, RAD51L1, IGF2BP1, HMGA2, MSRB3). Genes at four of the identified loci are implicated in the development of cancer. A variant within the HOXB gene cluster associated with occlusion defects requiring orthodontic treatment by age 31 years. PMID:20195514

  3. A Case Control Study Reveals that Polyomaviruria Is Significantly Associated with Interstitial Cystitis and Vesical Ulceration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin J Winter

    Full Text Available To investigate whether polyomaviruses contribute to interstitial cystitis pathogenesis.A prospective study was performed with 50 interstitial cystitis cases compared with 50 age-matched, disease-free controls for the frequency of polyomaviruria. Associations between polyomaviruria and disease characteristics were analysed in cases. Polyomavirus in urine and bladder tissue was detected with species (JC virus vs. BK virus specific, real-time PCR.Case patients were reflective of interstitial cystitis epidemiology with age range from 26-88 years (median 58 and female predominance (41/50 F. There was a significant increase in the frequency of polyomavirus shedding between cases and controls (p<0.02. Polyomavirus shedding, in particular BK viruria, was associated with vesical ulceration, a marker of disease severity, among interstitial cystitis cases after adjustment for age and sex (OR 6.8, 95% CI 1.89-24.4. There was a significant association among cases between the presence of BK viruria and response to intravesical Clorpactin therapy (OR 4.50, 95% CI 1.17-17.4.The presence of polyomaviruria was found to be associated with the ulcerative form of interstitial cystitis. Clorpactin, which has anti-DNA virus activity, was more likely to improve symptoms in the presence of BK viruria. These data from this pilot study suggest associations between polyomaviruria and interstitial cystitis warranting further investigation.

  4. A Case Control Study Reveals that Polyomaviruria Is Significantly Associated with Interstitial Cystitis and Vesical Ulceration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, Benjamin J; O'Connell, Helen E; Bowden, Scott; Carey, Marcus; Eisen, Damon P

    2015-01-01

    To investigate whether polyomaviruses contribute to interstitial cystitis pathogenesis. A prospective study was performed with 50 interstitial cystitis cases compared with 50 age-matched, disease-free controls for the frequency of polyomaviruria. Associations between polyomaviruria and disease characteristics were analysed in cases. Polyomavirus in urine and bladder tissue was detected with species (JC virus vs. BK virus) specific, real-time PCR. Case patients were reflective of interstitial cystitis epidemiology with age range from 26-88 years (median 58) and female predominance (41/50 F). There was a significant increase in the frequency of polyomavirus shedding between cases and controls (pinterstitial cystitis cases after adjustment for age and sex (OR 6.8, 95% CI 1.89-24.4). There was a significant association among cases between the presence of BK viruria and response to intravesical Clorpactin therapy (OR 4.50, 95% CI 1.17-17.4). The presence of polyomaviruria was found to be associated with the ulcerative form of interstitial cystitis. Clorpactin, which has anti-DNA virus activity, was more likely to improve symptoms in the presence of BK viruria. These data from this pilot study suggest associations between polyomaviruria and interstitial cystitis warranting further investigation.

  5. Time-resolved toxicity study reveals the dynamic interactions between uncoated silver nanoparticles and bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Feng; Mohd Zaidi, Nurul Fitriah; Valsami-Jones, Eugenia; Kreft, Jan-Ulrich

    2017-06-01

    It is still unclear whether the toxicity of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) can be attributed solely to the release of Ag + or whether dissolved and nanoparticulate Ag act in parallel; this is due to the difficulty in distinguishing Ag + - from AgNP-effects. Also, AgNPs undergo changes during toxicity tests. This is the first study to investigate the influence of AgNP dissolution over time on viable counts at high time resolution and low cell density, avoiding the apparently reduced toxicity at higher cell densities identified in our study. Uncapped AgNPs were synthesized to avoid any interference from surface coatings. The transformations of AgNPs during storage were reduced. Lowering the concentration of AgNPs reduced their aggregation in Davis minimal medium (DMM). Also, AgNPs dissolved more slowly in DMM than in water. The minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) of Ag + and AgNPs increased with cell density according to a power law, suggesting that binding to cells decreased effective concentrations. However, AgNPs acted as a reservoir of Ag, releasing new Ag + to maintain the Ag stress. The toxicity of AgNPs was dominated by dissolved Ag. Combining controlled conditions, high time-resolution and low cell density, we could demonstrate different roles of ionic and nano Ag in bacterial death caused by AgNPs.

  6. Long-stay psychiatric patients: a prospective study revealing persistent antipsychotic-induced movement disorder.

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    P Roberto Bakker

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to assess the frequency of persistent drug-induced movement disorders namely, tardive dyskinesia (TD, parkinsonism, akathisia and tardive dystonia in a representative sample of long-stay patients with chronic severe mental illness. METHOD: Naturalistic study of 209, mainly white, antipsychotic-treated patients, mostly diagnosed with psychotic disorder. Of this group, the same rater examined 194 patients at least two times over a 4-year period, with a mean follow-up time of 1.1 years, with validated scales for TD, parkinsonism, akathisia, and tardive dystonia. RESULTS: The frequencies of persistent movement disorders in the sample were 28.4% for TD, 56.2% for parkinsonism, 4.6% for akathisia and 5.7% for tardive dystonia. Two-thirds of the participants displayed at least one type of persistent movement disorder. CONCLUSIONS: Persistent movement disorder continues to be the norm for long-stay patients with chronic mental illness and long-term antipsychotic treatment. Measures are required to remedy this situation.

  7. [Changing to a career in general practice - a qualitative study reveals motives of specialists].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwill, Simon; Magez, Julia; Jäger, Cornelia; von Meißner, Wolfgang Cg; Szecsenyi, Joachim; Flum, Elisabeth

    2016-12-01

    In 2011, the national German Medical Association (Bundesärztekammer) published guidelines for a slim-lined training program in general practice (Quereinstieg) for qualified medical specialists in other fields (e. g., surgeons, internists or anesthesiologists). This step is part of a strategy to prevent further shortages of general practitioners in Germany. In the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg, qualified medical specialists are allowed to complete their general practice training in approximately two years instead of five. The aim of this study was to understand the reasons of specialists for changing to a career in general practice. The postgraduate training program Verbundweiterbildung plus Baden-Württemberg had 597 trainees at the time of the study in December 2015. Previously qualified specialists in another medical discipline were identified and invited to participate in this study. Qualitative data was gathered using semi-structured interviews with content analysis of the interviews performed by three independent members of the research team. In total, 36 out of 597 trainees were identified as previously qualified specialists in another medical discipline. All 36 were invited to take part and 15 agreed to participate in this study. Overall, 15 interviews were performed, with a mean time of 24.19minutes. Participants with a median age of 40 years (33-59 years) - mainly anesthesiologists (n=7), surgeons (n=3) and internists (n=3) - presented with an average of 6.5 years of professional experience in their specialty. First, the participants' motivation to switch career arose from the wish to intensify the quality of patient contacts with a holistic approach including family and social background and from the infinite variety of general practice. Another reason given for a career change was self-employment opportunities. Finally, feelings of frustration over poor working conditions in hospitals resulted in a job search elsewhere in medicine, taking account of

  8. Mixture models reveal multiple positional bias types in RNA-Seq data and lead to accurate transcript concentration estimates.

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    Andreas Tuerk

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Accuracy of transcript quantification with RNA-Seq is negatively affected by positional fragment bias. This article introduces Mix2 (rd. "mixquare", a transcript quantification method which uses a mixture of probability distributions to model and thereby neutralize the effects of positional fragment bias. The parameters of Mix2 are trained by Expectation Maximization resulting in simultaneous transcript abundance and bias estimates. We compare Mix2 to Cufflinks, RSEM, eXpress and PennSeq; state-of-the-art quantification methods implementing some form of bias correction. On four synthetic biases we show that the accuracy of Mix2 overall exceeds the accuracy of the other methods and that its bias estimates converge to the correct solution. We further evaluate Mix2 on real RNA-Seq data from the Microarray and Sequencing Quality Control (MAQC, SEQC Consortia. On MAQC data, Mix2 achieves improved correlation to qPCR measurements with a relative increase in R2 between 4% and 50%. Mix2 also yields repeatable concentration estimates across technical replicates with a relative increase in R2 between 8% and 47% and reduced standard deviation across the full concentration range. We further observe more accurate detection of differential expression with a relative increase in true positives between 74% and 378% for 5% false positives. In addition, Mix2 reveals 5 dominant biases in MAQC data deviating from the common assumption of a uniform fragment distribution. On SEQC data, Mix2 yields higher consistency between measured and predicted concentration ratios. A relative error of 20% or less is obtained for 51% of transcripts by Mix2, 40% of transcripts by Cufflinks and RSEM and 30% by eXpress. Titration order consistency is correct for 47% of transcripts for Mix2, 41% for Cufflinks and RSEM and 34% for eXpress. We, further, observe improved repeatability across laboratory sites with a relative increase in R2 between 8% and 44% and reduced standard deviation.

  9. Observations and operational model simulations reveal the impact of Hurricane Matthew (2016) on the Gulf Stream and coastal sea level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ezer, Tal; Atkinson, Larry P.; Tuleya, Robert

    2017-12-01

    In October 7-9, 2016, Hurricane Matthew moved along the southeastern coast of the U.S., causing major flooding and significant damage, even to locations farther north well away from the storm's winds. Various observations, such as tide gauge data, cable measurements of the Florida Current (FC) transport, satellite altimeter data and high-frequency radar data, were analyzed to evaluate the impact of the storm. The data show a dramatic decline in the FC flow and increased coastal sea level along the U.S. coast. Weakening of the Gulf Stream (GS) downstream from the storm's area contributed to high coastal sea levels farther north. Analyses of simulations of an operational hurricane-ocean coupled model reveal the disruption that the hurricane caused to the GS flow, including a decline in transport of ∼20 Sv (1 Sv = 106 m3 s-1). In comparison, the observed FC reached a maximum transport of ∼40 Sv before the storm on September 10 and a minimum of ∼20 Sv after the storm on October 12. The hurricane impacts both the geostrophic part of the GS and the wind-driven currents, generating inertial oscillations with velocities of up to ±1 m s-1. Analysis of the observed FC transport since 1982 indicated that the magnitude of the current weakening in October 2016 was quite rare (outside 3 standard deviations from the mean). Such a large FC weakening in the past occurred more often in October and November, but is extremely rare in June-August. Similar impacts on the FC from past tropical storms and hurricanes suggest that storms may contribute to seasonal and interannual variations in the FC. The results also demonstrated the extended range of coastal impacts that remote storms can cause through their influence on ocean currents.

  10. QCD and Standard Model Studies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gagliardi, Carl A [Texas A & M Univ., College Station, TX (United States)

    2017-02-28

    Our group has focused on using jets in STAR to investigate the longitudinal and transverse spin structure of the proton. We performed measurements of the longitudinal double-spin asymmetry for inclusive jet production that provide the strongest evidence to date that the gluons in the proton with x>0.05 are polarized. We also made the first observation of the Collins effect in pp collisions, thereby providing an important test of the universality of the Collins fragmentation function and opening a new tool to probe quark transversity in the proton. Our studies of forward rapidity electromagnetic jet-like events raise serious question whether the large transverse spin asymmetries that have been seen for forward inclusive hadron production arise from conventional 2 → 2 parton scattering. This is the final technical report for DOE Grant DE-FG02-93ER40765. It covers activities during the period January 1, 2015 through November 30, 2016.

  11. Smartphones reveal angler behavior: A case study of a popular mobile fishing application in Alberta, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papenfuss, Jason T.; Phelps, Nicholas; Fulton, David C.; Venturelli, Paul A.

    2015-01-01

    Successfully managing fisheries and controlling the spread of invasive species depends on the ability to describe and predict angler behavior. However, finite resources restrict conventional survey approaches and tend to produce retrospective data that are limited in time or space and rely on intentions or attitudes rather than actual behavior. In this study, we used three years of angler data from a popular mobile fishing application in Alberta, Canada, to determine province-wide, seasonal patterns of (1) lake popularity that were consistent with conventional data and (2) anthropogenic lake connectivity that has not been widely described in North America. Our proof-of-concept analyses showed that mobile apps can be an inexpensive source of high-resolution, real-time data for managing fisheries and invasive species. We also identified key challenges that underscore the need for further research and development in this new frontier that combines big data with increased stakeholder interaction and cooperation.

  12. A genome-wide association study reveals variants in ARL15 that influence adiponectin levels.

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    J Brent Richards

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available The adipocyte-derived protein adiponectin is highly heritable and inversely associated with risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D and coronary heart disease (CHD. We meta-analyzed 3 genome-wide association studies for circulating adiponectin levels (n = 8,531 and sought validation of the lead single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs in 5 additional cohorts (n = 6,202. Five SNPs were genome-wide significant in their relationship with adiponectin (P< or =5x10(-8. We then tested whether these 5 SNPs were associated with risk of T2D and CHD using a Bonferroni-corrected threshold of P< or =0.011 to declare statistical significance for these disease associations. SNPs at the adiponectin-encoding ADIPOQ locus demonstrated the strongest associations with adiponectin levels (P-combined = 9.2x10(-19 for lead SNP, rs266717, n = 14,733. A novel variant in the ARL15 (ADP-ribosylation factor-like 15 gene was associated with lower circulating levels of adiponectin (rs4311394-G, P-combined = 2.9x10(-8, n = 14,733. This same risk allele at ARL15 was also associated with a higher risk of CHD (odds ratio [OR] = 1.12, P = 8.5x10(-6, n = 22,421 more nominally, an increased risk of T2D (OR = 1.11, P = 3.2x10(-3, n = 10,128, and several metabolic traits. Expression studies in humans indicated that ARL15 is well-expressed in skeletal muscle. These findings identify a novel protein, ARL15, which influences circulating adiponectin levels and may impact upon CHD risk.

  13. Identification of Promising Mutants Associated with Egg Production Traits Revealed by Genome-Wide Association Study.

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    Jingwei Yuan

    Full Text Available Egg number (EN, egg laying rate (LR and age at first egg (AFE are important production traits related to egg production in poultry industry. To better understand the knowledge of genetic architecture of dynamic EN during the whole laying cycle and provide the precise positions of associated variants for EN, LR and AFE, laying records from 21 to 72 weeks of age were collected individually for 1,534 F2 hens produced by reciprocal crosses between White Leghorn and Dongxiang Blue-shelled chicken, and their genotypes were assayed by chicken 600 K Affymetrix high density genotyping arrays. Subsequently, pedigree and SNP-based genetic parameters were estimated and a genome-wide association study (GWAS was conducted on EN, LR and AFE. The heritability estimates were similar between pedigree and SNP-based estimates varying from 0.17 to 0.36. In the GWA analysis, we identified nine genome-wide significant loci associated with EN of the laying periods from 21 to 26 weeks, 27 to 36 weeks and 37 to 72 weeks. Analysis of GTF2A1 and CLSPN suggested that they influenced the function of ovary and uterus, and may be considered as relevant candidates. The identified SNP rs314448799 for accumulative EN from 21 to 40 weeks on chromosome 5 created phenotypic differences of 6.86 eggs between two homozygous genotypes, which could be potentially applied to the molecular breeding for EN selection. Moreover, our finding showed that LR was a moderate polygenic trait. The suggestive significant region on chromosome 16 for AFE suggested the relationship between sex maturity and immune in the current population. The present study comprehensively evaluates the role of genetic variants in the development of egg laying. The findings will be helpful to investigation of causative genes function and future marker-assisted selection and genomic selection in chickens.

  14. Identification of Pleiotropic Cancer Susceptibility Variants from Genome-Wide Association Studies Reveals Functional Characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Yi-Hsuan; Graff, Rebecca E; Passarelli, Michael N; Hoffman, Joshua D; Ziv, Elad; Hoffmann, Thomas J; Witte, John S

    2018-01-01

    Background: There exists compelling evidence that some genetic variants are associated with the risk of multiple cancer sites (i.e., pleiotropy). However, the biological mechanisms through which the pleiotropic variants operate are unclear. Methods: We obtained all cancer risk associations from the National Human Genome Research Institute-European Bioinformatics Institute GWAS Catalog, and correlated cancer risk variants were clustered into groups. Pleiotropic variant groups and genes were functionally annotated. Associations of pleiotropic cancer risk variants with noncancer traits were also obtained. Results: We identified 1,431 associations between variants and cancer risk, comprised of 989 unique variants associated with 27 unique cancer sites. We found 20 pleiotropic variant groups (2.1%) composed of 33 variants (3.3%), including novel pleiotropic variants rs3777204 and rs56219066 located in the ELL2 gene. Relative to single-cancer risk variants, pleiotropic variants were more likely to be in genes (89.0% vs. 65.3%, P = 2.2 × 10 -16 ), and to have somewhat larger risk allele frequencies (median RAF = 0.49 versus 0.39, P = 0.046). The 27 genes to which the pleiotropic variants mapped were suggestive for enrichment in response to radiation and hypoxia, alpha-linolenic acid metabolism, cell cycle, and extension of telomeres. In addition, we observed that 8 of 33 pleiotropic cancer risk variants were associated with 16 traits other than cancer. Conclusions: This study identified and functionally characterized genetic variants showing pleiotropy for cancer risk. Impact: Our findings suggest biological pathways common to different cancers and other diseases, and provide a basis for the study of genetic testing for multiple cancers and repurposing cancer treatments. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev; 27(1); 75-85. ©2017 AACR . ©2017 American Association for Cancer Research.

  15. Estrogenic activity of commercial milk as revealed in immature hamster uterotrophic assay – pilot study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radko, Lidia; Minta, Maria; Stypuła-Trębas, Sylwia

    The risk for public health posed by endocrine disruptors present in food is relatively new issue. Our current understanding of human exposure is mainly based on the residue analysis of selected compounds. With such approach potential, effects of mixtures, including so-far unidentified compounds are not taken into consideration. Therefore, the knowledge of overall hormonal activity in food samples is of big importance. Milk and dairy products are a rich source of estrogens but very rarely undergo testing for estrogenic activity. For this reason the rodent uterotrophic bioassay is one of the most useful tool. This preliminary study was conducted in immature hamsters to assess commercially available milk. The endpoint measured was uterine weight increase. Fifteen-day old females received ad libitum throughout 7 days commercially available milk i.e. raw goat’s, raw cow’s, processed 3.2% UHT, and for comparison soy milk. The animals of negative control group received water but positive control group got 17β - estradiol (E2) at the concentration of 100 ng/ml. All samples of milk showed estrogenic activity as follow: goat’s >cow’s >soy >processed milk. Significant increase of uteri weights were recorded in goat’s (pmilk (pmilk experimental groups ranged from 0.112% to 0.153% and in positive control this value was 0.493%. The results suggest that commercially available milk has a weak uterotrophic activity. Further in vivo and in vitro studies are warranted to gain more insight into the estrogenic risk from milk and other dairy products.

  16. The Study of Iodine Status among Schoolchildren from Kyiv and Ways to Correct the Revealed Violations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O.A. Stroi

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Relevance. Lack of iodine in the environment is one of the topical medico-social problems in many countries of the world. Iodine deficiency is an important risk factor for the developmental delay, memory loss, or the ability for analysis and abstract thinking. Traditionally in Ukraine the problem of iodine deficiency was relevant in Western regions, but recent studies indicate the existence of moderate iodine deficiency in all areas. The aim of our study was to assess the iodine status of primary schoolchildren from Kyiv. Materials and methods. The examination of 52 children aged 6–12 years was performed, which involved a survey of families on awareness of the consequences of iodine deficiency and frequency of consumption of foods containing iodine, objective and ultrasound thyroid investigation, determination of urine iodine content in single portions of urine. Results. Iodine deficiency was detected in 87 % of pupils, mostly mild. Diffuse goiter grade 1 was diagnosed in 23 % of patients. To correct iodine deficiency, we have used new generation product — jodis-concentrate as an aqueous solution. Conclusions. Research of iodine status in schoolchildren aged 6–12 years in Kyiv showed the presence of mild iodine deficiency in 87 % of them (in 68 and 19 %, respectively. In 12 (23 % children, we have diagnosed thyroid volume increase under normal echogenicity and homogeneous echostructure. Lack of iodine nutrition is caused by poor nutrition, lack of mass, group and individual iodine prophylaxis, low sanitary hygienic culture of the population. Pupils with iodine deficiency were administered an individual subsidy of iodine in the form of an aqueous solution of jodis-concentrate for 12 months, which has significantly improved the iodine status of children, normalized the level of urine iodine content. Early detection of iodine deficiency and its correction are the promising directions of modern pediatrics in terms of the prevention of thyroid

  17. Morphological Study of the Encystment and Excystment of Vermamoeba vermiformis Revealed Original Traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fouque, Emilie; Yefimova, Marina; Trouilhé, Marie-Cécile; Quellard, Nathalie; Fernandez, Béatrice; Rodier, Marie-Hélène; Thomas, Vincent; Humeau, Philippe; Héchard, Yann

    2015-01-01

    Free-living amoebae are ubiquitous protozoa commonly found in water. Among them, Acanthamoeba and Vermamoeba (formerly Hartmannella) are the most represented genera. In case of stress, such as nutrient deprivation or osmotic stress, these amoebae initiate a differentiation process, named encystment. It leads to the cyst form, which is a resistant form enabling amoebae to survive in harsh conditions and resist disinfection treatments. Encystment has been thoroughly described in Acanthamoeba but poorly in Vermamoeba. Our study was aimed to follow the encystment/excystment processes by microscopic observations. We show that encystment is quite rapid, as mature cysts were obtained in 9 h, and that cyst wall is composed of two layers. A video shows that a locomotive form is likely involved in clustering cysts together during encystment. As for Acanthamoeba, autophagy is likely active during this process. Specific vesicles, possibly involved in ribophagy, were observed within the cytoplasm. Remarkably, mitochondria rearranged around the nucleus within the cyst, suggesting high needs in energy. Unlike Acanthamoeba and Naegleria, no ostioles were observed in the cyst wall suggesting that excystment is original. During excystment, large vesicles, likely filled with hydrolases, were found in close proximity to cyst wall and digest it. Trophozoite moves inside its cyst wall before exiting during excystment. In conclusion, Vermamoeba encystment/excystment displays original trends as compare to Acanthamoeba. © 2014 The Author(s) Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology © 2014 International Society of Protistologists.

  18. Phylogenetic and molecular epidemiological studies reveal evidence of multiple past recombination events between infectious laryngotracheitis viruses.

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    Sang-Won Lee

    Full Text Available In contrast to the RNA viruses, the genome of large DNA viruses such as herpesviruses have been considered to be relatively stable. Intra-specific recombination has been proposed as an important, but underestimated, driving force in herpesvirus evolution. Recently, two distinct field strains of infectious laryngotracheitis virus (ILTV have been shown to have arisen from independent recombination events between different commercial ILTV vaccines. In this study we sequenced the genomes of additional ILTV strains and also utilized other recently updated complete genome sequences of ILTV to confirm the existence of a number of ILTV recombinants in nature. Multiple recombination events were detected in the unique long and repeat regions of the genome, but not in the unique short region. Most recombinants contained a pair of crossover points between two distinct lineages of ILTV, corresponding to the European origin and the Australian origin vaccine strains of ILTV. These results suggest that there are two distinct genotypic lineages of ILTV and that these commonly recombine in the field.

  19. Epizoanthus spp. associations revealed using DNA markers: a case study from Kochi, Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reimer, James Davis; Hirose, Mamiko; Nishisaka, Taiki; Sinniger, Frederic; Itani, Gyo

    2010-09-01

    Zoanthids (Cnidaria, Hexacorallia) of the genus Epizoanthus are often found in association with other marine invertebrates, including gastropods and hermit crabs. However, little information exists on the specificity and nature of these associations due to a lack of investigation into Epizoanthus species diversity, and the taxonomy of Epizoanthus is therefore confused. In this study, analyses of morphological data (tentacle number, polyp size, etc) and molecular data (mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 = COI, 16S ribosomal DNA = 16S rDNA) were used to examine Epizoanthus specimens from Tosa Bay, Kochi, Japan. The Epizoanthus specimens were found on both live gastropods (Gemmula unedo) and hermit crabs (Paguristes palythophilus) inhabiting G. unedo and G. cosmoi shells. While morphological analyses did not show clear differences between examined specimens, both COI and mt 16S rDNA clearly divided the specimens into two groups, one associated only with hermit crabs (= Epizoanthus sp. C), and another associated only with living gastropods (= Epizoanthus sp. S). Unexpectedly, DNA sequences from both groups did not match with two previously reported Epizoanthus species from Japan (E. indicus, E. ramosus), indicating they both may be undescribed species. These results highlight the utility of DNA "barcoding" of unknown zoanthids, and will provide a foundation for re-examinations of Epizoanthus species diversity and specificity, which will be critical in understanding the evolution of these unique marine invertebrates.

  20. [Salmonella typhi vaccination response study reveals defective antibody production selective IgA deficiency patient].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pleguezuelo, Daniel E; Gianelli, Carla

    2015-01-01

    Selective IgA deficiency (SIgAD) is the most prevalent immunodeficiency worldwide, progressing to common variable immunodeficiency only in few reported cases. We report the case of a Spanish female aged 22 and diagnosed of selective IgA deficiency, a long history of bronchitis, several episodes of pneumonia, bilateral bronchiectasis, normal IgG, IgM, IgG subclasses, and detectable pre-vaccination IgG antibodies against tetanus toxoid and Streptococcus pneumoniae. She was evaluated in our clinic in order to rule out common variable immunodeficiency. We observed good antibody response to tetanus toxoid, absence of circulating switched memory B cells, decreased response to pneumococcal polysaccharide antigens and a lack of response to Salmonella typhi vaccine. Most SIgAD patients presents with upper respiratory tract infections or mild diarrhea. Those with lower tract infections, pneumonia or untreatable diarrhea should follow B-cell subpopulations' study and antibody response to vaccines. Absence of response to Salmonella typhi vaccine allowed us to expose the defective antibody production.

  1. Drawings of Blood Cells Reveal People's Perception of Their Blood Disorder: A Pilot Study.

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    Steven Ramondt

    Full Text Available Sickle cell disease (SCD and thalassemia are rare but chronic blood disorders. Recent literature showed impaired quality of life (QOL in people with these blood disorders. Assessing one of the determinants of QOL (i.e. illness perceptions therefore, is an important next research area.We aimed to explore illness perceptions of people with a blood disorder with drawings in addition to the Brief Illness Perception Questionnaire (Brief IPQ. Drawings are a novel method to assess illness perceptions and the free-range answers drawings offer can add additional insight into how people perceive their illness.We conducted a cross-sectional study including 17 participants with a blood disorder. Participants' illness perceptions were assessed by the Brief IPQ and drawings. Brief IPQ scores were compared with reference groups from the literature (i.e. people with asthma or lupus erythematosus.Participants with SCD or thalassemia perceived their blood disorder as being more chronic and reported more severe symptoms than people with either asthma or lupus erythematosus. In the drawings of these participants with a blood disorder, a greater number of blood cells drawn was negatively correlated with perceived personal control (P<0.05, indicating that a greater quantity in the drawing is associated with more negative or distressing beliefs.Participants with a blood disorder perceive their disease as fairly threatening compared with people with other chronic illnesses. Drawings can add additional insight into how people perceive their illness by offering free-range answers.

  2. Genome-wide Association Study of Dermatomyositis Reveals Genetic Overlap with other Autoimmune Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Frederick W.; Cooper, Robert G.; Vencovsky, Jiri; Rider, Lisa G.; Danko, Katalin; Wedderburn, Lucy R.; Lundberg, Ingrid E.; Pachman, Lauren M.; Reed, Ann M.; Ytterberg, Steven R.; Padyukov, Leonid; Selva-O’Callaghan, Albert; Radstake, Timothy; Isenberg, David A.; Chinoy, Hector; Ollier, William E. R.; O’Hanlon, Terrance P.; Peng, Bo; Lee, Annette; Lamb, Janine A.; Chen, Wei; Amos, Christopher I.; Gregersen, Peter K.

    2014-01-01

    Objective To identify new genetic associations with juvenile and adult dermatomyositis (DM). Methods We performed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of adult and juvenile DM patients of European ancestry (n = 1178) and controls (n = 4724). To assess genetic overlap with other autoimmune disorders, we examined whether 141 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) outside the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) locus, and previously associated with autoimmune diseases, predispose to DM. Results Compared to controls, patients with DM had a strong signal in the MHC region consisting of GWAS-level significance (P < 5x10−8) at 80 genotyped SNPs. An analysis of 141 non-MHC SNPs previously associated with autoimmune diseases showed that three SNPs linked with three genes were associated with DM, with a false discovery rate (FDR) < 0.05. These genes were phospholipase C like 1 (PLCL1, rs6738825, FDR=0.00089), B lymphoid tyrosine kinase (BLK, rs2736340, FDR=0.00031), and chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 21 (CCL21, rs951005, FDR=0.0076). None of these genes was previously reported to be associated with DM. Conclusion Our findings confirm the MHC as the major genetic region associated with DM and indicate that DM shares non-MHC genetic features with other autoimmune diseases, suggesting the presence of additional novel risk loci. This first identification of autoimmune disease genetic predispositions shared with DM may lead to enhanced understanding of pathogenesis and novel diagnostic and therapeutic approaches. PMID:23983088

  3. Mutational studies of the Aux/IAA proteins in Physcomitrella reveal novel insights into their function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tao, Sibo; Estelle, Mark

    2018-02-20

    The plant hormone auxin regulates many aspects of plant growth and development. Auxin signaling involves hormone perception by the TRANSPORT INHIBITOR RESPONSE/AUXIN F-BOX (TIR1/AFB)-Aux/IAA co-receptor system, and the subsequent degradation of the Aux/IAA transcriptional repressors by the ubiquitin proteasome pathway. This leads to the activation of downstream gene expression and diverse physiological responses. Here, we investigate how the structural elements in the Aux/IAAs determine their function in Auxin perception and transcriptional repression. We took advantage of the facile genetics of the moss Physcomitrella patens to determine the activity of wild-type and mutant PpIAA1a proteins in a Δaux/iaa null background. In this way, Aux/IAA function was characterized at the molecular and physiological levels without the interference of genetic redundancy. We identified and characterized degron variants in Aux/IAAs that affect their stability and Auxin response. We also demonstrated that neither the Aux/IAA EAR motif nor Aux/IAA oligomerization is essential for the repressive function of Aux/IAA. Our study demonstrates how key elements within the Aux/IAA proteins fine tune stability and repressor activity, as well as the long-term developmental outcome. © 2018 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2018 New Phytologist Trust.

  4. Association studies and legume synteny reveal haplotypes determining seed size in Vigna unguiculata

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mitchell R Lucas

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Highly specific seed market classes for cowpea and other grain legumes exists because grain is most commonly cooked and consumed whole. Size, shape, color, and texture are critical features of these market classes and breeders target development of cultivars for market acceptance. Resistance to biotic and abiotic stresses that are absent from elite breeding material are often introgressed through crosses to landraces or wild relatives. When crosses are made between parents with different grain quality characteristics, recovery of progeny with acceptable or enhanced grain quality is problematic. Thus genetic markers for grain quality traits can help in pyramiding genes needed for specific market classes. Allelic variation dictating the inheritance of seed size can be tagged and used to assist the selection of large-seeded lines. In this work we applied SNP genotyping and knowledge of legume synteny to characterize regions of the cowpea genome associated with seed size. These marker-trait associations will enable breeders to use marker based selection approaches to increase the frequency of progeny with large seed. For ~800 samples derived from eight bi-parental populations, QTL analysis was used to identify markers linked to ten trait determinants. In addition, the population structure of 171 samples from the USDA core collection was identified and incorporated into a genome-wide association study which supported more than half of the trait-associated regions important in the bi-parental populations. Seven of the total ten QTL were supported based on synteny to seed size associated regions identified in the related legume soybean. In addition to delivering markers linked to major trait determinants in the context of modern breeding, we provide an analysis of the diversity of the USDA core collection of cowpea to identify genepools, migrants, admixture, and duplicates.

  5. Association Studies and Legume Synteny Reveal Haplotypes Determining Seed Size in Vigna unguiculata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, Mitchell R; Huynh, Bao-Lam; da Silva Vinholes, Patricia; Cisse, Ndiaga; Drabo, Issa; Ehlers, Jeffrey D; Roberts, Philip A; Close, Timothy J

    2013-01-01

    Highly specific seed market classes for cowpea and other grain legumes exist because grain is most commonly cooked and consumed whole. Size, shape, color, and texture are critical features of these market classes and breeders target development of cultivars for market acceptance. Resistance to biotic and abiotic stresses that are absent from elite breeding material are often introgressed through crosses to landraces or wild relatives. When crosses are made between parents with different grain quality characteristics, recovery of progeny with acceptable or enhanced grain quality is problematic. Thus genetic markers for grain quality traits can help in pyramiding genes needed for specific market classes. Allelic variation dictating the inheritance of seed size can be tagged and used to assist the selection of large seeded lines. In this work we applied 1,536-plex SNP genotyping and knowledge of legume synteny to characterize regions of the cowpea genome associated with seed size. These marker-trait associations will enable breeders to use marker-based selection approaches to increase the frequency of progeny with large seed. For 804 individuals derived from eight bi-parental populations, QTL analysis was used to identify markers linked to 10 trait determinants. In addition, the population structure of 171 samples from the USDA core collection was identified and incorporated into a genome-wide association study which supported more than half of the trait-associated regions important in the bi-parental populations. Seven of the total 10 QTLs were supported based on synteny to seed size associated regions identified in the related legume soybean. In addition to delivering markers linked to major trait determinants in the context of modern breeding, we provide an analysis of the diversity of the USDA core collection of cowpea to identify genepools, migrants, admixture, and duplicates.

  6. Exome-wide association study reveals novel susceptibility genes to sporadic dilated cardiomyopathy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrike Esslinger

    Full Text Available Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM is an important cause of heart failure with a strong familial component. We performed an exome-wide array-based association study (EWAS to assess the contribution of missense variants to sporadic DCM.116,855 single nucleotide variants (SNVs were analyzed in 2796 DCM patients and 6877 control subjects from 6 populations of European ancestry. We confirmed two previously identified associations with SNVs in BAG3 and ZBTB17 and discovered six novel DCM-associated loci (Q-value<0.01. The lead-SNVs at novel loci are common and located in TTN, SLC39A8, MLIP, FLNC, ALPK3 and FHOD3. In silico fine mapping identified HSPB7 as the most likely candidate at the ZBTB17 locus. Rare variant analysis (MAF<0.01 demonstrated significant association for TTN variants only (P = 0.0085. All candidate genes but one (SLC39A8 exhibit preferential expression in striated muscle tissues and mutations in TTN, BAG3, FLNC and FHOD3 are known to cause familial cardiomyopathy. We also investigated a panel of 48 known cardiomyopathy genes. Collectively, rare (n = 228, P = 0.0033 or common (n = 36, P = 0.019 variants with elevated in silico severity scores were associated with DCM, indicating that the spectrum of genes contributing to sporadic DCM extends beyond those identified here.We identified eight loci independently associated with sporadic DCM. The functions of the best candidate genes at these loci suggest that proteostasis regulation might play a role in DCM pathophysiology.

  7. Microarray studies on lager brewer's yeasts reveal cell status in the process of autolysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Weina; Wang, Jinjing; Li, Qi

    2014-08-01

    In this work, we performed DNA microarray studies on lager brewer's yeast Saccharomyces pastorianus to investigate changes in gene expression in the process of autolysis. The two strains we used were Qing2 and 5-2. Strain 5-2 is a mutant of Qing2 and autolyzes much more slowly than its parent strain. Four samples of these two strains during different autolysis stages (0% and 15%) were tested using DNA microarray containing > 10,000 yeast's genes. Analysis of genes with the same transcription pattern (up- or down-regulated in both strains) showed that the same 99 genes were up-regulated (transcription levels were increased), and the same 97 genes were down-regulated (transcription levels were decreased) by fivefold or more during autolysis. Genes involved in energy production/utilization, protein anabolism, and stress response were down-regulated. Genes related to cell wall organization and biogenesis, starvation response and DNA damage response were up-regulated. Analysis of genes with opposite transcription patterns (up-regulated in one strain and down-regulated in the other one) showed that 246 genes were up-regulated in 5-2 (autolyzes slowly) and down-regulated in Qing2 (autolyzes rapidly). Another 18 genes had opposite transcription levels, indicating that the strain which autolyzes slowly had better cell vitality despite the same autolysis stage. These findings might further promote the global understanding of autolysis in yeast. © 2014 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Genome-Wide Association Study Reveals Multiple Loci Influencing Normal Human Facial Morphology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John R Shaffer

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Numerous lines of evidence point to a genetic basis for facial morphology in humans, yet little is known about how specific genetic variants relate to the phenotypic expression of many common facial features. We conducted genome-wide association meta-analyses of 20 quantitative facial measurements derived from the 3D surface images of 3118 healthy individuals of European ancestry belonging to two US cohorts. Analyses were performed on just under one million genotyped SNPs (Illumina OmniExpress+Exome v1.2 array imputed to the 1000 Genomes reference panel (Phase 3. We observed genome-wide significant associations (p < 5 x 10-8 for cranial base width at 14q21.1 and 20q12, intercanthal width at 1p13.3 and Xq13.2, nasal width at 20p11.22, nasal ala length at 14q11.2, and upper facial depth at 11q22.1. Several genes in the associated regions are known to play roles in craniofacial development or in syndromes affecting the face: MAFB, PAX9, MIPOL1, ALX3, HDAC8, and PAX1. We also tested genotype-phenotype associations reported in two previous genome-wide studies and found evidence of replication for nasal ala length and SNPs in CACNA2D3 and PRDM16. These results provide further evidence that common variants in regions harboring genes of known craniofacial function contribute to normal variation in human facial features. Improved understanding of the genes associated with facial morphology in healthy individuals can provide insights into the pathways and mechanisms controlling normal and abnormal facial morphogenesis.

  9. A comparative phylogeographic study reveals discordant evolutionary histories of alpine ground beetles (Coleoptera, Carabidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weng, Yi-Ming; Yang, Man-Miao; Yeh, Wen-Bin

    2016-04-01

    Taiwan, an island with three major mountain ranges, provides an ideal topography to study mountain-island effect on organisms that would be diversified in the isolation areas. Glaciations, however, might drive these organisms to lower elevations, causing gene flow among previously isolated populations. Two hypotheses have been proposed to depict the possible refugia for alpine organisms during glaciations. Nunatak hypothesis suggests that alpine species might have stayed in situ in high mountain areas during glaciations. Massif de refuge, on the other hand, proposes that alpine species might have migrated to lower ice-free areas. By sampling five sympatric carabid species of Nebria and Leistus, and using two mitochondrial genes and two nuclear genes, we evaluated the mountain-island effect on alpine carabids and tested the two proposed hypotheses with comparative phylogeographic method. Results from the phylogenetic relationships, network analysis, lineage calibration, and genetic structure indicate that the deep divergence among populations in all L. smetanai, N. formosana, and N. niitakana was subjected to long-term isolation, a phenomenon in agreement with the nunatak hypothesis. However, genetic admixture among populations of N. uenoiana and some populations of L. nokoensis complex suggests that gene flow occurred during glaciations, as a massif de refuge depicts. The speciation event in N. niitakana is estimated to have occurred before 1.89 million years ago (Mya), while differentiation among isolated populations in N. niitakana, N. formosana, L. smetanai, and L. nokoensis complex might have taken place during 0.65-1.65 Mya. While each of the alpine carabids arriving in Taiwan during different glaciation events acquired its evolutionary history, all of them had confronted the existing mountain ranges.

  10. Genomic markers reveal introgressive hybridization in the Indo-West Pacific mangroves: a case study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mei Sun

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Biodiversity of mangrove ecosystems is difficult to assess, at least partly due to lack of genetic verification of morphology-based documentation of species. Natural hybridization, on the one hand, plays an important role in evolution as a source of novel gene combinations and a mechanism of speciation. However, on the other hand, recurrent introgression allows gene flow between species and could reverse the process of genetic differentiation among populations required for speciation. To understand the dynamic evolutionary consequences of hybridization, this study examines genomic structure of hybrids and parental species at the population level. In the Indo-West Pacific, Bruguiera is one of the dominant mangrove genera and species ranges overlap extensively with one another. Morphological intermediates between sympatric Bruguiera gymnorrhiza and Bruguiera sexangula have been reported as a variety of B. sexangula or a new hybrid species, B. × rhynchopetala. However, the direction of hybridization and extent of introgression are unclear. A large number of species-specific inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR markers were found in B. gymnorrhiza and B. sexangula, and the additive ISSR profiling of B. × rhynchopetala ascertained its hybrid status and identified its parental origin. The varying degree of scatterness among hybrid individuals in Principal Coordinate Analysis and results from NewHybrids analysis indicate that B. × rhynchopetala comprises different generations of introgressants in addition to F(1s. High genetic relatedness between B. × rhynchopetala and B. gymnorrhiza based on nuclear and chloroplast sequences suggests preferential hybrid backcrosses to B. gymnorrhiza. We conclude that B. × rhynchopetala has not evolved into an incipient hybrid species, and its persistence can be explained by recurrent hybridization and introgression. Genomic data provide insights into the hybridization dynamics of mangrove plants. Such information

  11. Neospora caninum tachyzoite immunome study reveals differences among three biologically different isolates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regidor-Cerrillo, Javier; García-Lunar, Paula; Pastor-Fernández, Iván; Álvarez-García, Gema; Collantes-Fernández, Esther; Gómez-Bautista, Mercedes; Ortega-Mora, Luis M

    2015-09-15

    Pathogenesis of bovine neosporosis is determined by different host- and parasite-dependent factors, including isolate virulence. A previous study identified that several Neospora caninum tachyzoite proteins were more abundant in virulent isolates, Nc-Liv and Nc-Spain7, compared with the low-virulent isolate Nc-Spain1H. Herein, we explored differences in the immunomes of these three isolates. Protein extracts from the Nc-Liv, Nc-Spain1H and Nc-Spain7 isolates were analysed in a 3×3 design by 2-DE immunoblot using sera from experimentally infected mice with these same three isolates. All isolates displayed a highly similar antigenic pattern when they were assessed using the same serum. Most of the reactive spots were located in the acidic region (pH 3-7) and grouped in 3 antigenic areas (250-70, 45-37 and 35-15 KDa). Differences found in the immunome depended on the sera used, regardless of the extract employed. In this sense, sera from Nc-Liv and Nc-Spain7 infected mice recognized the highest number of antigens, followed by Nc-Spain1H infected mice sera. In fact, 4 proteins identified by MS were not consistently detected in each isolate extract by sera from low-virulent Nc-Spain1H-infected mice: serine-threonine phosphatase 2C and superoxide dismutase (related to metabolism), gliding associated protein GAP45 (related to tachyzoites invasion), and NcGRA1 (located on dense granules). Similarly, 4 non-identified spots and another 2 spots chains located in 45-37 kDa area were not detected by this pooled sera. Variations between virulent Nc-Spain7 and Nc-Liv were limited to the absence of recognition by sera from Nc-Spain7-infected mice of GAP45 and the spot chains located in the 45-37 kDa area. These results suggest that variations in the immunome profiles rely on the immune response induced by each isolate and that these differentially recognized antigens could be investigated as putative virulence markers of neosporosis. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights

  12. qDNAmod: a statistical model-based tool to reveal intercellular heterogeneity of DNA modification from SMRT sequencing data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Zhixing; Li, Jing; Zhang, Jing-Ren; Zhang, Xuegong

    2014-01-01

    In an isogenic cell population, phenotypic heterogeneity among individual cells is common and critical for survival of the population under different environment conditions. DNA modification is an important epigenetic factor that can regulate phenotypic heterogeneity. The single molecule real-time (SMRT) sequencing technology provides a unique platform for detecting a wide range of DNA modifications, including N6-methyladenine (6-mA), N4-methylcytosine (4-mC) and 5-methylcytosine (5-mC). Here we present qDNAmod, a novel bioinformatic tool for genome-wide quantitative profiling of intercellular heterogeneity of DNA modification from SMRT sequencing data. It is capable of estimating proportion of isogenic haploid cells, in which the same loci of the genome are differentially modified. We tested the reliability of qDNAmod with the SMRT sequencing data of Streptococcus pneumoniae strain ST556. qDNAmod detected extensive intercellular heterogeneity of DNA methylation (6-mA) in a clonal population of ST556. Subsequent biochemical analyses revealed that the recognition sequences of two type I restriction–modification (R-M) systems are responsible for the intercellular heterogeneity of DNA methylation initially identified by qDNAmod. qDNAmod thus represents a valuable tool for studying intercellular phenotypic heterogeneity from genome-wide DNA modification. PMID:25404133

  13. Time-transgressive tunnel-valley infill revealed by a three- dimensional sedimentary model, Hamburg, north-west Germany

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Janszen, Adriaan; Moreau, Julien; Moscariello, Andrea

    2013-01-01

    highly intricate and therefore difficult to predict. This study intends to improve the comprehension of the sedimentology and to establish a conceptual model of tunnel-valley infill, which can be used as a predictive tool. To this end, the densely sampled, Pleistocene tunnel valleys in Hamburg (north...... succession filling the Hamburg area tunnel valleys can be subdivided into three distinct units, which are distinguished by their inferred depositional proximity to the ice margin. The overall trend of the succession shows a progressive decrease in transport energy and glacial influence through time. The rate...

  14. Recent progress in econophysics: Chaos, leverage, and business cycles as revealed by agent-based modeling and human experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xin, Chen; Huang, Ji-Ping

    2017-12-01

    Agent-based modeling and controlled human experiments serve as two fundamental research methods in the field of econophysics. Agent-based modeling has been in development for over 20 years, but how to design virtual agents with high levels of human-like "intelligence" remains a challenge. On the other hand, experimental econophysics is an emerging field; however, there is a lack of experience and paradigms related to the field. Here, we review some of the most recent research results obtained through the use of these two methods concerning financial problems such as chaos, leverage, and business cycles. We also review the principles behind assessments of agents' intelligence levels, and some relevant designs for human experiments. The main theme of this review is to show that by combining theory, agent-based modeling, and controlled human experiments, one can garner more reliable and credible results on account of a better verification of theory; accordingly, this way, a wider range of economic and financial problems and phenomena can be studied.

  15. Integrative modelling coupled with ion mobility mass spectrometry reveals structural features of the clamp loader in complex with single-stranded DNA binding protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Politis, Argyris; Park, Ah Young; Hall, Zoe; Ruotolo, Brandon T; Robinson, Carol V

    2013-11-29

    DNA polymerase III, a decameric 420-kDa assembly, simultaneously replicates both strands of the chromosome in Escherichia coli. A subassembly of this holoenzyme, the seven-subunit clamp loader complex, is responsible for loading the sliding clamp (β2) onto DNA. Here, we use structural information derived from ion mobility mass spectrometry (IM-MS) to build three-dimensional models of one form of the full clamp loader complex, γ3δδ'ψχ (254 kDa). By probing the interaction between the clamp loader and a single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) binding protein (SSB4) and by identifying two distinct conformational states, with and without ssDNA, we assemble models of ψχ-SSB4 (108 kDa) and the clamp loader-SSB4 (340 kDa) consistent with IM data. A significant increase in measured collision cross-section (~10%) of the clamp loader-SSB4 complex upon DNA binding suggests large conformational rearrangements. This DNA bound conformation represents the active state and, along with the presence of ψχ, stabilises the clamp loader-SSB4 complex. Overall, this study of a large heteromeric complex analysed by IM-MS, coupled with integrative modelling, highlights the potential of such an approach to reveal structural features of previously unknown complexes of high biological importance. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. pH imaging reveals worsened tissue acidification in diffusion kurtosis lesion than the kurtosis/diffusion lesion mismatch in an animal model of acute stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Enfeng; Wu, Yin; Cheung, Jerry S; Zhou, Iris Yuwen; Igarashi, Takahiro; Zhang, XiaoAn; Sun, Phillip Zhe

    2017-10-01

    Diffusion weighted imaging (DWI) has been commonly used in acute stroke examination, yet a portion of DWI lesion may be salvageable. Recently, it has been shown that diffusion kurtosis imaging (DKI) defines the most severely damaged DWI lesion that does not renormalize following early reperfusion. We postulated that the diffusion and kurtosis lesion mismatch experience heterogeneous hemodynamic and/or metabolic injury. We investigated tissue perfusion, pH, diffusion, kurtosis and relaxation from regions of the contralateral normal area, diffusion lesion, kurtosis lesion and their mismatch in an animal model of acute stroke. Our study revealed significant kurtosis and diffusion lesion volume mismatch (19.7 ± 10.7%, P mismatch, we showed lower pH in the kurtosis lesion (pH = 6.64 ± 0.12) from that of the kurtosis/diffusion lesion mismatch (6.84 ± 0.11, P mismatch agreed well with literature values for regions of ischemic core and penumbra, respectively. Our work documented initial evidence that DKI may reveal the heterogeneous metabolic derangement within the commonly used DWI lesion.

  17. Modeling the effector - regulatory T cell cross-regulation reveals the intrinsic character of relapses in Multiple Sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Torrealdea Javier

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The relapsing-remitting dynamics is a hallmark of autoimmune diseases such as Multiple Sclerosis (MS. Although current understanding of both cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases is significant, how their activity generates this prototypical dynamics is not understood yet. In order to gain insight about the mechanisms that drive these relapsing-remitting dynamics, we developed a computational model using such biological knowledge. We hypothesized that the relapsing dynamics in autoimmunity can arise through the failure in the mechanisms controlling cross-regulation between regulatory and effector T cells with the interplay of stochastic events (e.g. failure in central tolerance, activation by pathogens that are able to trigger the immune system. Results The model represents five concepts: central tolerance (T-cell generation by the thymus, T-cell activation, T-cell memory, cross-regulation (negative feedback between regulatory and effector T-cells and tissue damage. We enriched the model with reversible and irreversible tissue damage, which aims to provide a comprehensible link between autoimmune activity and clinical relapses and active lesions in the magnetic resonances studies in patients with Multiple Sclerosis. Our analysis shows that the weakness in this negative feedback between effector and regulatory T-cells, allows the immune system to generate the characteristic relapsing-remitting dynamics of autoimmune diseases, without the need of additional environmental triggers. The simulations show that the timing at which relapses appear is highly unpredictable. We also introduced targeted perturbations into the model that mimicked immunotherapies that modulate effector and regulatory populations. The effects of such therapies happened to be highly dependent on the timing and/or dose, and on the underlying dynamic of the immune system. Conclusion The relapsing dynamic in MS

  18. Mechanistic studies of anticancer aptamer AS1411 reveal a novel role for nucleolin in regulating Rac1 activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes-Reyes, E Merit; Šalipur, Francesca R; Shams, Mitra; Forsthoefel, Matthew K; Bates, Paula J

    2015-08-01

    AS1411 is a G-rich quadruplex-forming oligodeoxynucleotide that binds specifically to nucleolin, a protein found on the surface and in the cytoplasm of most malignant cells but absent from the surface/cytoplasm of most normal cells. AS1411 has shown promising clinical activity and is being widely used as a tumor-targeting agent, but its mechanism of action is not fully understood. Previously, we showed that AS1411 is taken up in cancer cells by macropinocytosis (fluid phase endocytosis) and subsequently stimulates further macropinocytosis by a nucleolin-dependent mechanism. In the current study, we have investigated the significance and molecular mechanisms of AS1411-induced macropinocytosis. Our results indicate that the antiproliferative activity of AS1411 in various cell lines correlated with its capacity to stimulate macropinocytosis. In DU145 prostate cancer cells, AS1411 induced activation of EGFR, Akt, p38, and Rac1. Activation of Akt and p38 were not critical for AS1411 activity because Akt activation was not observed in all AS1411-responsive cell lines and knockdown of p38 had no effect on AS1411's ability to inhibit proliferation. On the other hand, activation of EGFR and Rac1 appeared to play a role in AS1411 activity in all cancer cell lines examined (DU145, MDA-MB-468, A549, LNCaP) and their inhibition significantly reduced AS1411-mediated macropinocytosis and AS1411 antiproliferative activity. Interestingly, downregulation of nucleolin expression by siRNA also produced a substantial increase in activated Rac1, revealing a previously unknown role for nucleolin as a negative regulator of Rac1 activation. Our results are consistent with a model whereby AS1411 binding to nucleolin leads to sustained activation of Rac1 and causes methuosis, a novel type of nonapoptotic cell death characterized by hyperstimulation of macropinocytosis. We speculate that methuosis is a tumor/metastasis suppressor mechanism that opposes the malignant functions of Rac1 and that

  19. A Preclinical Model of Chronic Alcohol Consumption Reveals Increased Metastatic Seeding of Colon Cancer Cells in the Liver.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Im, Hwi-Jin; Kim, Hyeong-Geug; Lee, Jin-Seok; Kim, Hyo-Seon; Cho, Jung-Hyo; Jo, Il-Joo; Park, Sung-Joo; Son, Chang-Gue

    2016-04-01

    Liver metastasis is the main cause of death from colorectal cancer. Alcohol consumption impacts liver function and is suggested to be an independent risk factor for liver metastasis of colorectal cancer, but no experimental evidence supporting this hypothesis has been demonstrated to date. In this study, we investigated the effect of alcohol intake on liver metastasis. We examined colon cancer cell spread from the spleen in mice provided with water (control group), alcohol for 4 weeks before tumor injection (prealcohol), alcohol for 3 weeks after tumor injection (postalcohol), or alcohol throughout the 7-week study (alcohol). Alcohol intake significantly increased hepatic metastatic burden in the prealcohol (2.4-fold, P < 0.001), postalcohol (2.0-fold, P < 0.01), and alcohol groups (2.2-fold, P < 0.001). A fluorescence-based metastasis tracking assay also confirmed an alcohol-induced increase in the abundance of tumor cells in the liver (2.5-fold, P < 0.001). Investigation of the host microenvironment revealed an alcohol-induced inflammatory response marked by elevated TNFα, IL1β, IL6, and IFNγ protein levels, as well as increased expression of intercellular molecule-1 (ICAM1) in hepatic tissues after 4 weeks of alcohol consumption. Moreover, the peripheral blood of mice provided with alcohol for 4 weeks exhibited reduced natural killer and CD8(+) T-cell counts. Collectively, our findings suggest that chronic alcohol consumption accelerates liver metastasis of colorectal cancer cells through alterations to the liver microenvironment and inactivation of immune surveillance. Cancer Res; 76(7); 1698-704. ©2016 AACR. ©2016 American Association for Cancer Research.

  20. A novel mouse model reveals that polycystin-1 deficiency in ependyma and choroid plexus results in dysfunctional cilia and hydrocephalus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claas Wodarczyk

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Polycystin-1 (PC-1, the product of the PKD1 gene, mutated in the majority of cases of Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease (ADPKD, is a very large (approximately 520 kDa plasma membrane receptor localized in several subcellular compartments including cell-cell/matrix junctions as well as cilia. While heterologous over-expression systems have allowed identification of several of the potential biological roles of this receptor, its precise function remains largely elusive. Studying PC-1 in vivo has been a challenging task due to its complexity and low expression levels. To overcome these limitations and facilitate the study of endogenous PC-1, we have inserted HA- or Myc-tag sequences into the Pkd1 locus by homologous recombination. Here, we show that our approach was successful in generating a fully functional and easily detectable endogenous PC-1. Characterization of PC-1 distribution in vivo showed that it is expressed ubiquitously and is developmentally-regulated in most tissues. Furthermore, our novel tool allowed us to investigate the role of PC-1 in brain, where the protein is abundantly expressed. Subcellular localization of PC-1 revealed strong and specific staining in ciliated ependymal and choroid plexus cells. Consistent with this distribution, we observed hydrocephalus formation both in the ubiquitous knock-out embryos and in newborn mice with conditional inactivation of the Pkd1 gene in the brain. Both choroid plexus and ependymal cilia were morphologically normal in these mice, suggesting a role for PC-1 in ciliary function or signalling in this compartment, rather than in ciliogenesis. We propose that the role of PC-1 in the brain cilia might be to prevent hydrocephalus, a previously unrecognized role for this receptor and one that might have important implications for other genetic or sporadic diseases.

  1. Optical polarization tractography revealed significant fiber disarray in skeletal muscles of a mouse model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Y; Zhang, K; Wasala, N B; Duan, D; Yao, G

    2015-02-01

    Optical polarization tractography (OPT) was recently developed to visualize tissue fiber architecture with cellular-level resolution and accuracy. In this study, we explored the feasibility of using OPT to study muscle disease in the mdx4cv mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. The freshly dissected tibialis anterior muscles of mdx4cv and normal mice were imaged. A "fiber disarray index" (FDI) was developed to quantify the myofiber disorganization. In necrotic muscle regions of the mdx4cv mice, the FDI was significantly elevated and can be used to segment the 3D necrotic regions for assessing the overall muscle damage. These results demonstrated the OPT's capability for imaging microscopic fiber alternations in muscle research.

  2. Whole Genome and Global Gene Expression Analyses of the Model Mushroom Flammulina velutipes Reveal a High Capacity for Lignocellulose Degradation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Young-Jin; Baek, Jeong Hun; Lee, Seonwook; Kim, Changhoon; Rhee, Hwanseok; Kim, Hyungtae; Seo, Jeong-Sun; Park, Hae-Ran; Yoon, Dae-Eun; Nam, Jae-Young; Kim, Hong-Il; Kim, Jong-Guk; Yoon, Hyeokjun; Kang, Hee-Wan; Cho, Jae-Yong; Song, Eun-Sung; Sung, Gi-Ho; Yoo, Young-Bok; Lee, Chang-Soo; Lee, Byoung-Moo; Kong, Won-Sik

    2014-01-01

    Flammulina velutipes is a fungus with health and medicinal benefits that has been used for consumption and cultivation in East Asia. F. velutipes is also known to degrade lignocellulose and produce ethanol. The overlapping interests of mushroom production and wood bioconversion make F. velutipes an attractive new model for fungal wood related studies. Here, we present the complete sequence of the F. velutipes genome. This is the first sequenced genome for a commercially produced edible mushroom that also degrades wood. The 35.6-Mb genome contained 12,218 predicted protein-encoding genes and 287 tRNA genes assembled into 11 scaffolds corresponding with the 11 chromosomes of strain KACC42780. The 88.4-kb mitochondrial genome contained 35 genes. Well-developed wood degrading machinery with strong potential for lignin degradation (69 auxiliary activities, formerly FOLymes) and carbohydrate degradation (392 CAZymes), along with 58 alcohol dehydrogenase genes were highly expressed in the mycelium, demonstrating the potential application of this organism to bioethanol production. Thus, the newly uncovered wood degrading capacity and sequential nature of this process in F. velutipes, offer interesting possibilities for more detailed studies on either lignin or (hemi-) cellulose degradation in complex wood substrates. The mutual interest in wood degradation by the mushroom industry and (ligno-)cellulose biomass related industries further increase the significance of F. velutipes as a new model. PMID:24714189

  3. Adsorption of arsenic and phosphate onto the surface of calcite as revealed by batch experiments and surface complexation modelling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sø, Helle Ugilt

    in sorption edges, pKa’s and geometry of the two anions. The adsorption of arsenate and phosphate in the single sorbate systems was modelled successfully using either the constant capacitance model (CCM) for calcite or the CD-MUSIC model for calcite. Generally the models capture the variation in arsenate...

  4. A SYSTEMATIC STUDY OF SOFTWARE QUALITY MODELS

    OpenAIRE

    Dr.Vilas. M. Thakare; Ashwin B. Tomar

    2011-01-01

    This paper aims to provide a basis for software quality model research, through a systematic study ofpapers. It identifies nearly seventy software quality research papers from journals and classifies paper asper research topic, estimation approach, study context and data set. The paper results combined withother knowledge provides support for recommendations in future software quality model research, toincrease the area of search for relevant studies, carefully select the papers within a set ...

  5. iTRAQ-based proteomic analysis reveals alterations in the liver induced by restricted meal frequency in a pig model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jingbo; Liu, Zhengqun; Chen, Liang; Zhang, Hongfu

    2016-01-01

    The present study was conducted to investigate the effects of meal frequency on metabolite levels in pig plasma and hepatic proteome by isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ) analysis. Twenty-four pigs (60.7 ± 1.0 kg) consumed the same amount of feed either in 2 (M2, n = 12) or 12 (M12, n = 12) meals per day. After an 8-wk feeding period, plasma concentrations of metabolites and hormones, hepatic biochemical traits, and proteome (n = 4 per group) were measured. Pigs on the M12 regimen had lower average daily gain and gain-to-feed ratio than pigs fed the M2 regimen. The M2 regimen resulted in lower total lipid, glycogen, and triacylglycerol content in the liver and circulating triacylglycerol concentration than that in the M12 pigs. The metabolic hormone concentrations were not affected by meal frequency, with the exception of elevated fibroblast growth factor 21 concentrations in the M2 regimen compared with the M12 regimen. The iTRAQ-based proteomic analysis revealed 35 differentially expressed proteins in the liver between pigs fed two and 12 meals per day, and these differentially expressed proteins were involved in the regulation of general biological process such as glucose and energy metabolism, lipid metabolism, protein and amino acid metabolism, stress response, and cell redox homeostasis. Altogether, the proteomic results provide insights into the mechanism mediating the beneficial effects of restricted meal frequency on the metabolic fitness. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. A new in vivo model of pantothenate kinase-associated neurodegeneration reveals a surprising role for transcriptional regulation in pathogenesis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Varun ePandey

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Pantothenate Kinase-Associated Neurodegeneration (PKAN is a neurodegenerative disorder with a poorly understood molecular mechanism. It is caused by mutations in Pantothenate Kinase, the first enzyme in the Coenzyme A (CoA biosynthetic pathway. Here, we developed a Drosophila model of PKAN (tim-fbl flies that allows us to continuously monitor the modeled disease in the brain. In tim-fbl flies, downregulation of fumble, the Drosophila PanK homologue in the cells containing a circadian clock results in characteristic features of PKAN such as developmental lethality, hypersensitivity to oxidative stress, and diminished life span. Despite quasi-normal circadian transcriptional rhythms, tim-fbl flies display brain-specific aberrant circadian locomotor rhythms, and a unique transcriptional signature. Comparison with expression data from flies exposed to paraquat demonstrates that, as previously suggested, pathways others than oxidative stress are affected by PANK downregulation. Surprisingly we found a significant decrease in the expression of key components of the photoreceptor recycling pathways, which could lead to retinal degeneration, a hallmark of PKAN. Importantly, these defects are not accompanied by changes in structural components in eye genes suggesting that changes in gene expression in the eye precede and may cause the retinal degeneration. Indeed tim-fbl flies have diminished response to light transitions, and their altered day/night patterns of activity demonstrates defects in light perception. This suggest that retinal lesions are not solely due to oxidative stress and demonstrates a role for the transcriptional response to CoA deficiency underlying the defects observed in dPanK deficient flies. Moreover, in the present study we developed a new fly model that can be applied to other diseases and that allows the assessment of neurodegeneration in the brains of living flies.

  7. Zebrafish models for dyskeratosis congenita reveal critical roles of p53 activation contributing to hematopoietic defects through RNA processing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ying Zhang

    Full Text Available Dyskeratosis congenita (DC is a rare bone marrow failure syndrome in which hematopoietic defects are the main cause of mortality. The most studied gene responsible for DC pathogenesis is DKC1 while mutations in several other genes encoding components of the H/ACA RNP telomerase complex, which is involved in ribosomal RNA(rRNA processing and telomere maintenance, have also been implicated. GAR1/nola1 is one of the four core proteins of the H/ACA RNP complex. Through comparative analysis of morpholino oligonucleotide induced knockdown of dkc1 and a retrovirus insertion induced mutation of GAR1/nola1 in zebrafish, we demonstrate that hematopoietic defects are specifically recapitulated in these models and that these defects are significantly reduced in a p53 null mutant background. We further show that changes in telomerase activity are undetectable at the early stages of DC pathogenesis but rRNA processing is clearly defective. Our data therefore support a model that deficiency in dkc1 and nola1 in the H/ACA RNP complex likely contributes to the hematopoietic phenotype through p53 activation associated with rRNA processing defects rather than telomerase deficiency during the initial stage of DC pathogenesis.

  8. Transgenic mouse model reveals an unsuspected role of the acetylcholine receptor in statin-induced neuromuscular adverse drug reactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grajales-Reyes, G E; Báez-Pagán, C A; Zhu, H; Grajales-Reyes, J G; Delgado-Vélez, M; García-Beltrán, W F; Luciano, C A; Quesada, O; Ramírez, R; Gómez, C M; Lasalde-Dominicci, J A

    2014-01-01

    High cholesterol levels are an established risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD), the world’s leading cause of death. Inhibitors of 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A reductase (statins) are prescribed to lower serum cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of CVD. Despite the success of statins, many patients abandon treatment owing to neuromuscular adverse drug reactions (ADRs). Genome-wide association studies have identified the single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs4149056 in the SLCO1B1 gene as being associated with an increased risk for statin-induced ADRs. By studying slow-channel syndrome transgenic mouse models, we determined that statins trigger ADRs in mice expressing the mutant allele of the rs137852808 SNP in the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) α-subunit gene CHRNA1. Mice expressing this allele show a remarkable contamination of end-plates with caveolin-1 and develop early signs of neuromuscular degeneration upon statin treatment. This study demonstrates that genes coding for nAChR subunits may contain variants associated with statin-induced ADRs. PMID:22688219

  9. Demographic modelling with whole-genome data reveals parallel origin of similar Pundamilia cichlid species after hybridization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, Joana I; Sousa, Vitor C; Marques, David A; Selz, Oliver M; Wagner, Catherine E; Excoffier, Laurent; Seehausen, Ole

    2017-01-01

    Modes and mechanisms of speciation are best studied in young species pairs. In older taxa, it is increasingly difficult to distinguish what happened during speciation from what happened after speciation. Lake Victoria cichlids in the genus Pundamilia encompass a complex of young species and polymorphic populations. One Pundamilia species pair, P. pundamilia and P. nyererei, is particularly well suited to study speciation because sympatric population pairs occur with different levels of phenotypic differentiation and reproductive isolation at different rocky islands within the lake. Genetic distances between allopatric island populations of the same nominal species often exceed those between the sympatric species. It thus remained unresolved whether speciation into P. nyererei and P. pundamilia occurred once, followed by geographical range expansion and interspecific gene flow in local sympatry, or if the species pair arose repeatedly by parallel speciation. Here, we use genomic data and demographic modelling to test these alternative evolutionary scenarios. We demonstrate that gene flow plays a strong role in shaping the observed patterns of genetic similarity, including both gene flow between sympatric species and gene flow between allopatric populations, as well as recent and early gene flow. The best supported model for the origin of P. pundamilia and P. nyererei population pairs at two different islands is one where speciation happened twice, whereby the second speciation event follows shortly after introgression from an allopatric P. nyererei population that arose earlier. Our findings support the hypothesis that very similar species may arise repeatedly, potentially facilitated by introgressed genetic variation. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. A novel Zika virus mouse model reveals strain specific differences in virus pathogenesis and host inflammatory immune responses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shashank Tripathi

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Zika virus (ZIKV is a mosquito borne flavivirus, which was a neglected tropical pathogen until it emerged and spread across the Pacific Area and the Americas, causing large human outbreaks associated with fetal abnormalities and neurological disease in adults. The factors that contributed to the emergence, spread and change in pathogenesis of ZIKV are not understood. We previously reported that ZIKV evades cellular antiviral responses by targeting STAT2 for degradation in human cells. In this study, we demonstrate that Stat2-/- mice are highly susceptible to ZIKV infection, recapitulate virus spread to the central nervous system (CNS, gonads and other visceral organs, and display neurological symptoms. Further, we exploit this model to compare ZIKV pathogenesis caused by a panel of ZIKV strains of a range of spatiotemporal history of isolation and representing African and Asian lineages. We observed that African ZIKV strains induce short episodes of severe neurological symptoms followed by lethality. In comparison, Asian strains manifest prolonged signs of neuronal malfunctions, occasionally causing death of the Stat2-/- mice. African ZIKV strains induced higher levels of inflammatory cytokines and markers associated with cellular infiltration in the infected brain in mice, which may explain exacerbated pathogenesis in comparison to those of the Asian lineage. Interestingly, viral RNA levels in different organs did not correlate with the pathogenicity of the different strains. Taken together, we have established a new murine model that supports ZIKV infection and demonstrate its utility in highlighting intrinsic differences in the inflammatory response induced by different ZIKV strains leading to severity of disease. This study paves the way for the future interrogation of strain-specific changes in the ZIKV genome and their contribution to viral pathogenesis.

  11. Bioenergetics-based modeling of Plasmodium falciparum metabolism reveals its essential genes, nutritional requirements, and thermodynamic bottlenecks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anush Chiappino-Pepe

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Novel antimalarial therapies are urgently needed for the fight against drug-resistant parasites. The metabolism of malaria parasites in infected cells is an attractive source of drug targets but is rather complex. Computational methods can handle this complexity and allow integrative analyses of cell metabolism. In this study, we present a genome-scale metabolic model (iPfa of the deadliest malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, and its thermodynamics-based flux analysis (TFA. Using previous absolute concentration data of the intraerythrocytic parasite, we applied TFA to iPfa and predicted up to 63 essential genes and 26 essential pairs of genes. Of the 63 genes, 35 have been experimentally validated and reported in the literature, and 28 have not been experimentally tested and include previously hypothesized or novel predictions of essential metabolic capabilities. Without metabolomics data, four of the genes would have been incorrectly predicted to be non-essential. TFA also indicated that substrate channeling should exist in two metabolic pathways to ensure the thermodynamic feasibility of the flux. Finally, analysis of the metabolic capabilities of P. falciparum led to the identification of both the minimal nutritional requirements and the genes that can become indispensable upon substrate inaccessibility. This model provides novel insight into the metabolic needs and capabilities of the malaria parasite and highlights metabolites and pathways that should be measured and characterized to identify potential thermodynamic bottlenecks and substrate channeling. The hypotheses presented seek to guide experimental studies to facilitate a better understanding of the parasite metabolism and the identification of targets for more efficient intervention.

  12. Bioenergetics-based modeling of Plasmodium falciparum metabolism reveals its essential genes, nutritional requirements, and thermodynamic bottlenecks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiappino-Pepe, Anush; Ataman, Meriç

    2017-01-01

    Novel antimalarial therapies are urgently needed for the fight against drug-resistant parasites. The metabolism of malaria parasites in infected cells is an attractive source of drug targets but is rather complex. Computational methods can handle this complexity and allow integrative analyses of cell metabolism. In this study, we present a genome-scale metabolic model (iPfa) of the deadliest malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, and its thermodynamics-based flux analysis (TFA). Using previous absolute concentration data of the intraerythrocytic parasite, we applied TFA to iPfa and predicted up to 63 essential genes and 26 essential pairs of genes. Of the 63 genes, 35 have been experimentally validated and reported in the literature, and 28 have not been experimentally tested and include previously hypothesized or novel predictions of essential metabolic capabilities. Without metabolomics data, four of the genes would have been incorrectly predicted to be non-essential. TFA also indicated that substrate channeling should exist in two metabolic pathways to ensure the thermodynamic feasibility of the flux. Finally, analysis of the metabolic capabilities of P. falciparum led to the identification of both the minimal nutritional requirements and the genes that can become indispensable upon substrate inaccessibility. This model provides novel insight into the metabolic needs and capabilities of the malaria parasite and highlights metabolites and pathways that should be measured and characterized to identify potential thermodynamic bottlenecks and substrate channeling. The hypotheses presented seek to guide experimental studies to facilitate a better understanding of the parasite metabolism and the identification of targets for more efficient intervention. PMID:28333921

  13. Studying the Consistency between and within the Student Mental Models for Atomic Structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zarkadis, Nikolaos; Papageorgiou, George; Stamovlasis, Dimitrios

    2017-01-01

    Science education research has revealed a number of student mental models for atomic structure, among which, the one based on Bohr's model seems to be the most dominant. The aim of the current study is to investigate the coherence of these models when students apply them for the explanation of a variety of situations. For this purpose, a set of…

  14. A Study of Simple Diffraction Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Agerkvist, Finn

    In this paper two simple methods for cabinet edge diffraction are examined. Calculations with both models are compared with more sophisticated theoretical models and with measured data. The parameters involved are studied and their importance for normal loudspeaker box designs is examined....

  15. The temporal-spatial dynamics of feature maps during monocular deprivation revealed by chronic imaging and self-organization model simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tong, Lei; Xie, Yang; Yu, Hongbo

    2016-12-17

    Experiments on the adult visual cortex of cats, ferrets and monkeys have revealed organized spatial relationships between multiple feature maps which can also be reproduced by the Kohonen and elastic net self-organization models. However, attempts to apply these models to simulate the temporal kinetics of monocular deprivation (MD) during the critical period, and their effects on the spatial arrangement of feature maps, have led to conflicting results. In this study, we performed MD and chronic imaging in the ferret visual cortex during the critical period of ocular dominance (OD) plasticity. We also used the Kohonen model to simulate the effects of MD on OD and orientation map development. Both the experiments and simulations demonstrated two general parameter-insensitive findings. Specifically, our first finding demonstrated that the OD index shift resulting from MD, and its subsequent recovery during binocular vision (BV), were both nonlinear, with a significantly stronger shift occurring during the initial period. Meanwhile, spatial reorganization of feature maps led to globally unchanged but locally shifted map patterns. In detail, we found that the periodicity of OD and orientation maps remained unchanged during, and after, deprivation. Relationships between OD and orientation maps remained similar but were significantly weakened due to OD border shifts. These results indicate that orthogonal gradient relationships between maps may be preset and are only mildly modifiable during the critical period. The Kohonen model was able to reproduce these experimental results, hence its role is further extended to the description of cortical feature map dynamics during development. Copyright © 2016 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Imaging mass spectrometry reveals elevated nigral levels of dynorphin neuropeptides in L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia in rat model of Parkinson's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Ljungdahl

    Full Text Available L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia is a troublesome complication of L-DOPA pharmacotherapy of Parkinson's disease and has been associated with disturbed brain opioid transmission. However, so far the results of clinical and preclinical studies on the effects of opioids agonists and antagonists have been contradictory at best. Prodynorphin mRNA levels correlate well with the severity of dyskinesia in animal models of Parkinson's disease; however the identities of the actual neuroactive opioid effectors in their target basal ganglia output structures have not yet been determined. For the first time MALDI-TOF imaging mass spectrometry (IMS was used for unbiased assessment and topographical elucidation of prodynorphin-derived peptides in the substantia nigra of a unilateral rat model of Parkinson's disease and L-DOPA induced dyskinesia. Nigral levels of dynorphin B and alpha-neoendorphin strongly correlated with the severity of dyskinesia. Even if dynorphin peptide levels were elevated in both the medial and lateral part of the substantia nigra, MALDI IMS analysis revealed that the most prominent changes were localized to the lateral part of the substantia nigra. MALDI IMS is advantageous compared with traditional molecular methods, such as radioimmunoassay, in that neither the molecular identity analyzed, nor the specific localization needs to be predetermined. Indeed, MALDI IMS revealed that the bioconverted metabolite leu-enkephalin-arg also correlated positively with severity of dyskinesia. Multiplexing DynB and leu-enkephalin-arg ion images revealed small (0.25 by 0.5 mm nigral subregions with complementing ion intensities, indicating localized peptide release followed by bioconversion. The nigral dynorphins associated with L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia were not those with high affinity to kappa opioid receptors, but consisted of shorter peptides, mainly dynorphin B and alpha-neoendorphin that are known to bind and activate mu and delta opioid receptors

  17. An Ionospheric Metric Study Using Operational Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sojka, J. J.; Schunk, R. W.; Thompson, D. C.; Scherliess, L.; Harris, T. J.

    2006-12-01

    One of the outstanding challenges in upgrading ionospheric operational models is quantifying their improvement. This challenge is not necessarily an absolute accuracy one, but rather answering the question, "Is the newest operational model an improvement over its predecessor under operational scenarios?" There are few documented cases where ionospheric models are compared either with each other or against "ground truth". For example a CEDAR workshop team, PRIMO, spent almost a decade carrying out a models comparison with ionosonde and incoherent scatter radar measurements from the Millstone Hill, Massachusetts location [Anderson et al.,1998]. The result of this study was that all models were different and specific conditions could be found when each was the "best" model. Similarly, a National Space Weather Metrics ionospheric challenge was held and results were presented at a National Space Weather meeting. The results were again found to be open to interpretation, and issues with the value of the specific metrics were raised (Fuller-Rowell, private communication, 2003). Hence, unlike the tropospheric weather community, who have established metrics and exercised them on new models over many decades to quantify improvement, the ionospheric community has not yet settled on a metric of both scientific and operational value. We report on a study in which metrics were used to compare various forms of the International Reference Ionosphere (IRI), the Ionospheric Forecast Model (IFM), and the Utah State University Global Assimilation of Ionospheric Measurements Model (USU-GAIM) models. The ground truth for this study was a group of 11 ionosonde data sets taken between 20 March and 19 April 2004. The metric parameter was the ionosphere's critical frequency. The metric was referenced to the IRI. Hence, the study addressed the specific question what improvement does IFM and USU-GAIM have over IRI. Both strengths (improvements) and weaknesses of these models are discussed

  18. Targeted liquid chromatography quadrupole ion trap mass spectrometry analysis of tachykinin related peptides reveals significant expression differences in a rat model of neuropathic pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pailleux, Floriane; Vachon, Pascal; Lemoine, Jérôme; Beaudry, Francis

    2013-08-01

    Animal models are widely used to perform basic scientific research in pain. The rodent chronic constriction injury (CCI) model is widely used to study neuropathic pain. Animals were tested prior and after CCI surgery using behavioral tests (von Frey filaments and Hargreaves test) to evaluate pain. The brain and the lumbar enlargement of the spinal cord were collected from neuropathic and normal animals. Tachykinin related peptides were analyzed by high performance liquid chromatography quadrupole ion trap mass spectrometry. Our results reveal that the β-tachykinin₅₈₋₇₁, SP and SP₃₋₁₁ up-regulation are closely related to pain behavior. The spinal β-tachykinin₅₈₋₇₁, SP and SP₃₋₁₁ concentrations were significantly up-regulated in neuropathic animals compared with normal animals (ptachykinin₅₈₋₇₁ and SP concentrations were significantly up-regulated (ptachykinin₅₈₋₇₁, SP₁₋₇ and SP₆₋₁₁ (p>0.05). The β-tachykinin₅₈₋₇₁, SP and C-terminal SP metabolites could potentially serve as biomarkers in early drug discovery. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Molecular shape and binding force of Mycoplasma mobile's leg protein Gli349 revealed by an AFM study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lesoil, Charles; Nonaka, Takahiro; Sekiguchi, Hiroshi; Osada, Toshiya; Miyata, Makoto; Afrin, Rehana; Ikai, Atsushi

    2010-01-01

    Recent studies of the gliding bacteria Mycoplasma mobile have identified a family of proteins called the Gli family which was considered to be involved in this novel and yet fairly unknown motility system. The 349 kDa protein called Gli349 was successfully isolated and purified from the bacteria, and electron microscopy imaging and antibody experiments led to the hypothesis that it acts as the 'leg' of M. mobile, responsible for attachment to the substrate as well as for gliding motility. However, more precise evidence of the molecular shape and function of this protein was required to asses this theory any further. In this study, an atomic force microscope (AFM) was used both as an imaging and a force measurement device to provide new information about Gli349 and its role in gliding motility. AFM images of the protein were obtained revealing a complex structure with both rigid and flexible parts, consistent with previous electron micrographs of the protein. Single-molecular force spectroscopy experiments were also performed, revealing that Gli349 is able to specifically bind to sialyllactose molecules and withstand unbinding forces around 70 pN. These findings strongly support the idea that Gli349 is the 'leg' protein of M. mobile, responsible for binding and also most probably force generation during gliding motility.

  20. Train station access and train use: a joint stated and revealed preference choice modelling study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    La Paix Puello, Lissy Cesarina; Geurs, Karst Teunis; Geurs, K.T.; Patuelli, R.; Dentinho, T.

    2016-01-01

    Public transport accessibility depends not only on the places and opportunities that can be reached by transit, but also on accessibility to public transport. The characteristics of access and egress modes influence accessibility patterns but also ridership levels of public transport modes. In

  1. Genesis of Twin Tropical Cyclones as Revealed by a Global Mesoscale Model: The Role of Mixed Rossby Gravity Waves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Bo-Wen; Tao, Wei-Kuo; Lin, Yuh-Lang; Laing, Arlene

    2012-01-01

    In this study, it is proposed that twin tropical cyclones (TCs), Kesiny and 01A, in May 2002 formed in association with the scale interactions of three gyres that appeared as a convectively coupled mixed Rossby gravity (ccMRG) wave during an active phase of the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO). This is shown by analyzing observational data, including NCEP reanalysis data and METEOSAT 7 IR satellite imagery, and performing numerical simulations using a global mesoscale model. A 10-day control run is initialized at 0000 UTC 1 May 2002 with grid-scale condensation but no sub-grid cumulus parameterizations. The ccMRG wave was identified as encompassing two developing and one non-developing gyres, the first two of which intensified and evolved into the twin TCs. The control run is able to reproduce the evolution of the ccMRG wave and thus the formation of the twin TCs about two and five days in advance as well as their subsequent intensity evolution and movement within an 8-10 day period. Five additional 10-day sensitivity experiments with different model configurations are conducted to help understand the interaction of the three gyres, leading to the formation of the TCs. These experiments suggest the improved lead time in the control run may be attributed to the realistic simulation of the ccMRG wave with the following processes: (1) wave deepening (intensification) associated with a reduction in wavelength and/or the intensification of individual gyres, (2) poleward movement of gyres that may be associated with boundary layer processes, (3) realistic simulation of moist processes at regional scales in association with each of the gyres, and (4) the vertical phasing of low- and mid-level cyclonic circulations associated with a specific gyre.

  2. A zebrafish transgenic model of Ewing’s sarcoma reveals conserved mediators of EWS-FLI1 tumorigenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefanie W. Leacock

    2012-01-01

    Ewing’s sarcoma, a malignant bone tumor of children and young adults, is a member of the small-round-blue-cell tumor family. Ewing’s sarcoma family tumors (ESFTs, which include peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumors (PNETs, are characterized by chromosomal translocations that generate fusions between the EWS gene and ETS-family transcription factors, most commonly FLI1. The EWS-FLI1 fusion oncoprotein represents an attractive therapeutic target for treatment of Ewing’s sarcoma. The cell of origin of ESFT and the molecular mechanisms by which EWS-FLI1 mediates tumorigenesis remain unknown, and few animal models of Ewing’s sarcoma exist. Here, we report the use of zebrafish as a vertebrate model of EWS-FLI1 function and tumorigenesis. Mosaic expression of the human EWS-FLI1 fusion protein in zebrafish caused the development of tumors with histology strongly resembling that of human Ewing’s sarcoma. The incidence of tumors increased in a p53 mutant background, suggesting that the p53 pathway suppresses EWS-FLI1-driven tumorigenesis. Gene expression profiling of the zebrafish tumors defined a set of genes that might be regulated by EWS-FLI1, including the zebrafish ortholog of a crucial EWS-FLI1 target gene in humans. Stable zebrafish transgenic lines expressing EWS-FLI1 under the control of the heat-shock promoter exhibit altered embryonic development and defective convergence and extension, suggesting that EWS-FLI1 interacts with conserved developmental pathways. These results indicate that functional targets of EWS-FLI1 that mediate tumorigenesis are conserved from zebrafish to human and provide a novel context in which to study the function of this fusion oncogene.

  3. Touchscreen-based cognitive tasks reveal age-related impairment in a primate aging model, the grey mouse lemur (Microcebus murinus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joly, Marine; Ammersdörfer, Sandra; Schmidtke, Daniel; Zimmermann, Elke

    2014-01-01

    Mouse lemurs are suggested to represent promising novel non-human primate models for aging research. However, standardized and cross-taxa cognitive testing methods are still lacking. Touchscreen-based testing procedures have proven high stimulus control and reliability in humans and rodents. The aim of this study was to adapt these procedures to mouse lemurs, thereby exploring the effect of age. We measured appetitive learning and cognitive flexibility of two age groups by applying pairwise visual discrimination (PD) and reversal learning (PDR) tasks. On average, mouse lemurs needed 24 days of training before starting with the PD task. Individual performances in PD and PDR tasks correlate significantly, suggesting that individual learning performance is unrelated to the respective task. Compared to the young, aged mouse lemurs showed impairments in both PD and PDR tasks. They needed significantly more trials to reach the task criteria. A much higher inter-individual variation in old than in young adults was revealed. Furthermore, in the PDR task, we found a significantly higher perseverance in aged compared to young adults, indicating an age-related deficit in cognitive flexibility. This study presents the first touchscreen-based data on the cognitive skills and age-related dysfunction in mouse lemurs and provides a unique basis to study mechanisms of inter-individual variation. It furthermore opens exciting perspectives for comparative approaches in aging, personality, and evolutionary research.

  4. Touchscreen-based cognitive tasks reveal age-related impairment in a primate aging model, the grey mouse lemur (Microcebus murinus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marine Joly

    Full Text Available Mouse lemurs are suggested to represent promising novel non-human primate models for aging research. However, standardized and cross-taxa cognitive testing methods are still lacking. Touchscreen-based testing procedures have proven high stimulus control and reliability in humans and rodents. The aim of this study was to adapt these procedures to mouse lemurs, thereby exploring the effect of age. We measured appetitive learning and cognitive flexibility of two age groups by applying pairwise visual discrimination (PD and reversal learning (PDR tasks. On average, mouse lemurs needed 24 days of training before starting with the PD task. Individual performances in PD and PDR tasks correlate significantly, suggesting that individual learning performance is unrelated to the respective task. Compared to the young, aged mouse lemurs showed impairments in both PD and PDR tasks. They needed significantly more trials to reach the task criteria. A much higher inter-individual variation in old than in young adults was revealed. Furthermore, in the PDR task, we found a significantly higher perseverance in aged compared to young adults, indicating an age-related deficit in cognitive flexibility. This study presents the first touchscreen-based data on the cognitive skills and age-related dysfunction in mouse lemurs and provides a unique basis to study mechanisms of inter-individual variation. It furthermore opens exciting perspectives for comparative approaches in aging, personality, and evolutionary research.

  5. Mathematics revealed

    CERN Document Server

    Berman, Elizabeth

    1979-01-01

    Mathematics Revealed focuses on the principles, processes, operations, and exercises in mathematics.The book first offers information on whole numbers, fractions, and decimals and percents. Discussions focus on measuring length, percent, decimals, numbers as products, addition and subtraction of fractions, mixed numbers and ratios, division of fractions, addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. The text then examines positive and negative numbers and powers and computation. Topics include division and averages, multiplication, ratios, and measurements, scientific notation and estim

  6. Gillespie eco-evolutionary models (GEMs) reveal the role of heritable trait variation in eco-evolutionary dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeLong, John P; Gibert, Jean P

    2016-02-01

    Heritable trait variation is a central and necessary ingredient of evolution. Trait variation also directly affects ecological processes, generating a clear link between evolutionary and ecological dynamics. Despite the changes in variation that occur through selection, drift, mutation, and recombination, current eco-evolutionary models usually fail to track how variation changes through time. Moreover, eco-evolutionary models assume fitness functions for each trait and each ecological context, which often do not have empirical validation. We introduce a new type of model, Gillespie eco-evolutionary models (GEMs), that resolves these concerns by tracking distributions of traits through time as eco-evolutionary dynamics progress. This is done by allowing change to be driven by the direct fitness consequences of model parameters within the context of the underlying ecological model, without having to assume a particular fitness function. GEMs work by adding a trait distribution component to the standard Gillespie algorithm - an approach that models stochastic systems in nature that are typically approximated through ordinary differential equations. We illustrate GEMs with the Rosenzweig-MacArthur consumer-resource model. We show not only how heritable trait variation fuels trait evolution and influences eco-evolutionary dynamics, but also how the erosion of variation through time may hinder eco-evolutionary dynamics in the long run. GEMs can be developed for any parameter in any ordinary differential equation model and, furthermore, can enable modeling of multiple interacting traits at the same time. We expect GEMs will open the door to a new direction in eco-evolutionary and evolutionary modeling by removing long-standing modeling barriers, simplifying the link between traits, fitness, and dynamics, and expanding eco-evolutionary treatment of a greater diversity of ecological interactions. These factors make GEMs much more than a modeling advance, but an important

  7. Diffuse CO2 degassing studies to reveal hidden geothermal resources in oceanic volcanic islands: The Canarian archipelago case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez, F.; Perez, N. M.; García-Merino, M.; Padron, E.; Melián, G.; Asensio-Ramos, M.; Hernandez Perez, P. A.; Padilla, G.; Barrancos, J.; Cótchico, M. A.

    2016-12-01

    The Canary Islands, owing to their recent volcanism, are the only Spanish territory with potential high enthalpy geothermal resources. The final goal of geothermal exploration in a specific area is to locate and define the size, shape, structure of hidden geothermal resources, and determine their characteristics (fluid type, temperature, chemical composition an ability to produce energy). At those areas where there is not any evidence of endogenous fluids manifestations at surface, that traditionally evidence the presence of an active geothermal system) the geochemical methods for geothermal exploration must include soil gas surveys. This is the case of five mining licenses for geothermal exploration in the Canay Islands, four in Tenerife and one in Gran Canaria Island. We report herein the results of diffuse CO2 emission studies in the five mining licenses during 2011-2014. The primary objective of the study was to sort the possible geothermal potential of these five mining licenses, thus reducing the uncertainty inherent to the selection of the areas with highest geothermal potential for future exploration works. The criterion used to sort the different areas was the contribution of volcano-hydrothermal CO2 in the degassing at each study area. Several hundreds of measurements of diffuse CO2 emission, soil CO2 concentration and isotopic composition were performed at each study area. Based in three different endmembers (biogenic, atmospheric and deep-seated CO2) with different CO2 concentrations (100, 0.04 and 100% respectively) and isotopic compositions (-20, -8 and -3 per mil vs. VPDB respectively) a mass balance to distinguish the different contribution of each endmember in the soil CO2 at each sampling site was made. The percentage of the volcano-hydrothermal contribution in the current diffuse CO2 degassing was in the range 2-19%.The Abeque mining license, that comprises part of the north-west volcanic rift of Tenerife, seemed to show the highest geothermal

  8. Computer Modeling Reveals that Modifications of the Histone Tail Charges Define Salt-Dependent Interaction of the Nucleosome Core Particles

    OpenAIRE

    Yang, Ye; Lyubartsev, Alexander P.; Korolev, Nikolay; Nordenskiöld, Lars

    2009-01-01

    Coarse-grained Langevin molecular dynamics computer simulations were conducted for systems that mimic solutions of nucleosome core particles (NCPs). The NCP was modeled as a negatively charged spherical particle representing the complex of DNA and the globular part of the histones combined with attached strings of connected charged beads modeling the histone tails. The size, charge, and distribution of the tails relative to the core were built to match real NCPs. Three models of NCPs were con...

  9. A Homology Model Reveals Novel Structural Features and an Immunodominant Surface Loop/Opsonic Target in the Treponema pallidum BamA Ortholog TP_0326.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luthra, Amit; Anand, Arvind; Hawley, Kelly L; LeDoyt, Morgan; La Vake, Carson J; Caimano, Melissa J; Cruz, Adriana R; Salazar, Juan C; Radolf, Justin D

    2015-06-01

    We recently demonstrated that TP_0326 is a bona fide rare outer membrane protein (OMP) in Treponema pallidum and that it possesses characteristic BamA bipartite topology. Herein, we used immunofluorescence analysis (IFA) to show that only the β-barrel domain of TP_0326 contains surface-exposed epitopes in intact T. pallidum. Using the solved structure of Neisseria gonorrhoeae BamA, we generated a homology model of full-length TP_0326. Although the model predicts a typical BamA fold, the β-barrel harbors features not described in other BamAs. Structural modeling predicted that a dome comprised of three large extracellular loops, loop 4 (L4), L6, and L7, covers the barrel's extracellular opening. L4, the dome's major surface-accessible loop, contains mainly charged residues, while L7 is largely neutral and contains a polyserine tract in a two-tiered conformation. L6 projects into the β-barrel but lacks the VRGF/Y motif that anchors L6 within other BamAs. IFA and opsonophagocytosis assay revealed that L4 is surface exposed and an opsonic target. Consistent with B cell epitope predictions, immunoblotting and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) confirmed that L4 is an immunodominant loop in T. pallidum-infected rabbits and humans with secondary syphilis. Antibody capture experiments using Escherichia coli expressing OM-localized TP_0326 as a T. pallidum surrogate further established the surface accessibility of L4. Lastly, we found that a naturally occurring substitution (Leu(593) → Gln(593)) in the L4 sequences of T. pallidum strains affects antibody binding in sera from syphilitic patients. Ours is the first study to employ a "structure-to-pathogenesis" approach to map the surface topology of a T. pallidum OMP within the context of syphilitic infection. Previously, we reported that TP_0326 is a bona fide rare outer membrane protein (OMP) in Treponema pallidum and that it possesses the bipartite topology characteristic of a BamA ortholog. Using a homology

  10. Introgression study reveals two quantitative trait loci involved in interspecific variation in memory retention among Nasonia wasp species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoedjes, K.M.; Smid, H.M.; Vet, L.E.M.; Werren, J.H.

    2014-01-01

    Genes involved in the process of memory formation have been studied intensively in model organisms; however, little is known about the mechanisms that are responsible for natural variation in memory dynamics. There is substantial variation in memory retention among closely related species in the

  11. Toxicity of ozone and nitrogen dioxide to alveolar macrophages: comparative study revealing differences in their mechanism of toxic action

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rietjens, I. M.; Poelen, M. C.; Hempenius, R. A.; Gijbels, M. J.; Alink, G. M.

    1986-01-01

    The toxicity of ozone and nitrogen dioxide is generally ascribed to their oxidative potential. In this study their toxic mechanism of action was compared using an intact cell model. Rat alveolar macrophages were exposed by means of gas diffusion through a Teflon film. In this in vitro system, ozone

  12. Identification of Sox8 as a modifier gene in a mouse model of Hirschsprung disease reveals underlying molecular defect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maka, Marzena; Stolt, C Claus; Wegner, Michael

    2005-01-01

    Mice carrying heterozygous mutations in the Sox10 gene display aganglionosis of the colon and represent a model for human Hirschsprung disease. Here, we show that the closely related Sox8 functions as a modifier gene for Sox10-dependent enteric nervous system defects as it increases both penetrance and severity of the defect in Sox10 heterozygous mice despite having no detectable influence on enteric nervous system development on its own. Sox8 exhibits an expression pattern very similar to Sox10 with occurrence in vagal and enteric neural crest cells and later confinement to enteric glia. Loss of Sox8 alleles in Sox10 heterozygous mice impaired colonization of the gut by enteric neural crest cells already at early times. Whereas proliferation, apoptosis, and neuronal differentiation were normal for enteric neural crest cells in the gut of mutant mice, apoptosis was dramatically increased in vagal neural crest cells outside the gut. The defects in enteric nervous system development of mice with Sox10 and Sox8 mutations are therefore likely caused by a reduction of the pool of undifferentiated vagal neural crest cells. Our study suggests that Sox8 and Sox10 are jointly required for the maintenance of these vagal neural crest stem cells.

  13. Granger causality mapping during joint actions reveals evidence for forward models that could overcome sensory-motor delays.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Idil Kokal

    Full Text Available Studies investigating joint actions have suggested a central role for the putative mirror neuron system (pMNS because of the close link between perception and action provided by these brain regions [1], [2], [3]. In contrast, our previous functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI experiment demonstrated that the BOLD response of the pMNS does not suggest that it directly integrates observed and executed actions during joint actions [4]. To test whether the pMNS might contribute indirectly to the integration process by sending information to brain areas responsible for this integration (integration network, here we used Granger causality mapping (GCM [5]. We explored the directional information flow between the anterior sites of the pMNS and previously identified integrative brain regions. We found that the left BA44 sent more information than it received to both the integration network (left thalamus, right middle occipital gyrus and cerebellum and more posterior nodes of the pMNS (BA2. Thus, during joint actions, two anatomically separate networks therefore seem effectively connected and the information flow is predominantly from anterior to posterior areas of the brain. These findings suggest that the pMNS is involved indirectly in joint actions by transforming observed and executed actions into a common code and is part of a generative model that could predict the future somatosensory and visual consequences of observed and executed actions in order to overcome otherwise inevitable neural delays.

  14. Pathogenesis of POLR1C-dependent Type 3 Treacher Collins Syndrome revealed by a zebrafish model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lau, Marco Chi Chung; Kwong, Ernest Man Lok; Lai, Keng Po; Li, Jing-Woei; Ho, Jeff Cheuk Hin; Chan, Ting-Fung; Wong, Chris Kong Chu; Jiang, Yun-Jin; Tse, William Ka Fai

    2016-06-01

    Treacher Collins Syndrome (TCS) is a rare congenital birth disorder (1 in 50,000 live births) characterized by severe craniofacial defects, including the downward slanting palpebral fissures, hypoplasia of the facial bones, and cleft palate (CP). Over 90% of patients with TCS have a mutation in the TCOF1 gene. However, some patients exhibit mutations in two new causative genes, POLR1C and POLR1D, which encode subunits of RNA polymerases I and III, that affect ribosome biogenesis. In this study, we examine the role of POLR1C in TCS using zebrafish as a model system. Our data confirmed that polr1c is highly expressed in the facial region, and dysfunction of this gene by knockdown or knock-out resulted in mis-expression of neural crest cells during early development that leads to TCS phenotype. Next generation sequencing and bioinformatics analysis of the polr1c mutants further demonstrated the up-regulated p53 pathway and predicted skeletal disorders. Lastly, we partially rescued the TCS facial phenotype in the background of p53 mutants, which supported the hypothesis that POLR1C-dependent type 3 TCS is associated with the p53 pathway. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Metabolite profiling reveals novel multi-level cold responses in the diploid model Fragaria vesca (woodland strawberry).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rohloff, Jens; Kopka, Joachim; Erban, Alexander; Winge, Per; Wilson, Robert C; Bones, Atle M; Davik, Jahn; Randall, Stephen K; Alsheikh, Muath K

    2012-05-01

    Winter freezing damage is a crucial factor in overwintering crops such as the octoploid strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa Duch.) when grown in a perennial cultivation system. Our study aimed at assessing metabolic processes and regulatory mechanisms in the close-related diploid model woodland strawberry (Fragaria vescaL.) during a 10-days cold acclimation experiment. Based on gas chromatography/time-of-flight-mass spectrometry (GC/TOF-MS) metabolite profiling of three F. vesca genotypes, clear distinctions could be made between leaves and non-photosynthesizing roots, underscoring the evolvement of organ-dependent cold acclimation strategies. Carbohydrate and amino acid metabolism, photosynthetic acclimation, and antioxidant and detoxification systems (ascorbate pathway) were strongly affected. Metabolic changes in F. vesca included the strong modulation of central metabolism, and induction of osmotically-active sugars (fructose, glucose), amino acids (aspartic acid), and amines (putrescine). In contrast, a distinct impact on the amino acid proline, known to be cold-induced in other plant systems, was conspicuously absent. Levels of galactinol and raffinose, key metabolites of the cold-inducible raffinose pathway, were drastically enhanced in both leaves and roots throughout the cold acclimation period of 10 days. Furthermore, initial freezing tests and multifaceted GC/TOF-MS data processing (Venn diagrams, independent component analysis, hierarchical clustering) showed that changes in metabolite pools of cold-acclimated F. vesca were clearly influenced by genotype. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Analysis of MADS-Box Gene Family Reveals Conservation in Floral Organ ABCDE Model of Moso Bamboo (Phyllostachys edulis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Zhanchao; Ge, Wei; Li, Long; Hou, Dan; Ma, Yanjun; Liu, Jun; Bai, Qingsong; Li, Xueping; Mu, Shaohua; Gao, Jian

    2017-01-01

    Mini chromosome maintenance 1, agamous, deficiens, and serum response factor (MADS)-box genes are transcription factors which play fundamental roles in flower development and regulation of floral organ identity. However, till date, identification and functions of MADS-box genes remain largely unclear in Phyllostachys edulis . In view of this, we performed a whole-genome survey and identified 34 MADS-box genes in P. edulis , and based on phylogeny, they were classified as MIKC C , MIKC ∗ , Mα, and Mβ. The detailed analysis about gene structure and motifs, phylogenetic classification, comparison of gene divergence and duplication are provided. Interestingly, expression patterns for most genes were found similar to those of Arabidopsis and rice, indicating that the well-established ABCDE model can be applied to P. edulis . Moreover, we overexpressed PheMADS15 , an AP1 -like gene, in Arabidopsis , and found that the transgenic plants have early flowering phenotype, suggesting that PheMADS15 might be a regulator of flowering transition in P. edulis . Taken together, this study provides not only insightful comprehension but also useful information for understanding the functions of MADS-box genes in P. edulis .

  17. Analysis of MADS-Box Gene Family Reveals Conservation in Floral Organ ABCDE Model of Moso Bamboo (Phyllostachys edulis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhanchao Cheng

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Mini chromosome maintenance 1, agamous, deficiens, and serum response factor (MADS-box genes are transcription factors which play fundamental roles in flower development and regulation of floral organ identity. However, till date, identification and functions of MADS-box genes remain largely unclear in Phyllostachys edulis. In view of this, we performed a whole-genome survey and identified 34 MADS-box genes in P. edulis, and based on phylogeny, they were classified as MIKCC, MIKC∗, Mα, and Mβ. The detailed analysis about gene structure and motifs, phylogenetic classification, comparison of gene divergence and duplication are provided. Interestingly, expression patterns for most genes were found similar to those of Arabidopsis and rice, indicating that the well-established ABCDE model can be applied to P. edulis. Moreover, we overexpressed PheMADS15, an AP1-like gene, in Arabidopsis, and found that the transgenic plants have early flowering phenotype, suggesting that PheMADS15 might be a regulator of flowering transition in P. edulis. Taken together, this study provides not only insightful comprehension but also useful information for understanding the functions of MADS-box genes in P. edulis.

  18. Observation and Modeling of Storm Generated Acoustic Waves in the Ionosphere Revealed in a Dense Network of GPS Receivers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walterscheid, R. L.; Azeem, S. I.

    2017-12-01

    Acoustic waves generated in the lower atmosphere may become an important source of variably in the upper atmosphere. Although they are excited with small amplitudes they are minimally subject to viscous dissipation and may reach significant amplitudes at F-region altitudes. A number of studies in the 1970s showed clear signatures in ionosonde data in the infrasonic period range attributable to thunder storm activity. We have examined Total Electron Content data from a dense network of over 4000 ground-based GPS receivers over the continental United States during an outbreak of severe weather, including tornados, over Kansas in May 2015. A sequence of GPS TEC images showed clear Traveling Ionospheric Disturbances (TIDs) in the form of concentric rings moving outward from the center of the storm region. The characteristics of the disturbance (phase speed and frequency) were consistent with acoustic waves in the infrasonic range. We have modeled the disturbance by including a tropospheric heat source representing latent heat release from a large thunderstorm. The disturbance at ionospheric altitudes resembles the observed disturbance in terms of phase speed, frequency and horizontal wavelength. We conclude that the observed TIDs in TEC were caused by an acoustic wave generated by deep convection.

  19. Modeling of pharmacokinetics of cocaine in human reveals the feasibility for development of enzyme therapies for drugs of abuse.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fang Zheng

    Full Text Available A promising strategy for drug abuse treatment is to accelerate the drug metabolism by administration of a drug-metabolizing enzyme. The question is how effectively an enzyme can actually prevent the drug from entering brain and producing physiological effects. In the present study, we have developed a pharmacokinetic model through a combined use of in vitro kinetic parameters and positron emission tomography data in human to examine the effects of a cocaine-metabolizing enzyme in plasma on the time course of cocaine in plasma and brain of human. Without an exogenous enzyme, cocaine half-lives in both brain and plasma are almost linearly dependent on the initial cocaine concentration in plasma. The threshold concentration of cocaine in brain required to produce physiological effects has been estimated to be 0.22±0.07 µM, and the threshold area under the cocaine concentration versus time curve (AUC value in brain (denoted by AUC2(∞ required to produce physiological effects has been estimated to be 7.9±2.7 µM·min. It has been demonstrated that administration of a cocaine hydrolase/esterase (CocH/CocE can considerably decrease the cocaine half-lives in both brain and plasma, the peak cocaine concentration in brain, and the AUC2(∞. The estimated maximum cocaine plasma concentration which a given concentration of drug-metabolizing enzyme can effectively prevent from entering brain and producing physiological effects can be used to guide future preclinical/clinical studies on cocaine-metabolizing enzymes. Understanding of drug-metabolizing enzymes is key to the science of pharmacokinetics. The general insights into the effects of a drug-metabolizing enzyme on drug kinetics in human should be valuable also in future development of enzyme therapies for other drugs of abuse.

  20. Modeling of pharmacokinetics of cocaine in human reveals the feasibility for development of enzyme therapies for drugs of abuse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Fang; Zhan, Chang-Guo

    2012-01-01

    A promising strategy for drug abuse treatment is to accelerate the drug metabolism by administration of a drug-metabolizing enzyme. The question is how effectively an enzyme can actually prevent the drug from entering brain and producing physiological effects. In the present study, we have developed a pharmacokinetic model through a combined use of in vitro kinetic parameters and positron emission tomography data in human to examine the effects of a cocaine-metabolizing enzyme in plasma on the time course of cocaine in plasma and brain of human. Without an exogenous enzyme, cocaine half-lives in both brain and plasma are almost linearly dependent on the initial cocaine concentration in plasma. The threshold concentration of cocaine in brain required to produce physiological effects has been estimated to be 0.22±0.07 µM, and the threshold area under the cocaine concentration versus time curve (AUC) value in brain (denoted by AUC2(∞)) required to produce physiological effects has been estimated to be 7.9±2.7 µM·min. It has been demonstrated that administration of a cocaine hydrolase/esterase (CocH/CocE) can considerably decrease the cocaine half-lives in both brain and plasma, the peak cocaine concentration in brain, and the AUC2(∞). The estimated maximum cocaine plasma concentration which a given concentration of drug-metabolizing enzyme can effectively prevent from entering brain and producing physiological effects can be used to guide future preclinical/clinical studies on cocaine-metabolizing enzymes. Understanding of drug-metabolizing enzymes is key to the science of pharmacokinetics. The general insights into the effects of a drug-metabolizing enzyme on drug kinetics in human should be valuable also in future development of enzyme therapies for other drugs of abuse.

  1. A quantitative multiplex nuclease protection assay reveals immunotoxicity gene expression profiles in the rabbit model for vaginal drug safety evaluation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fichorova, Raina N., E-mail: rfichorova@rics.bwh.harvard.edu [Laboratory of Genital Tract Biology, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, Brigham and Women' s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA (United States); Mendonca, Kevin; Yamamoto, Hidemi S.; Murray, Ryan [Laboratory of Genital Tract Biology, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, Brigham and Women' s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA (United States); Chandra, Neelima; Doncel, Gustavo F. [CONRAD, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, VA (United States)

    2015-06-15

    Any vaginal product that alters the mucosal environment and impairs the immune barrier increases the risk of sexually transmitted infections, especially HIV infection, which thrives on mucosal damage and inflammation. The FDA-recommended rabbit vaginal irritation (RVI) model serves as a first line selection tool for vaginal products; however, for decades it has been limited to histopathology scoring, insufficient to select safe anti-HIV microbicides. In this study we incorporate to the RVI model a novel quantitative nuclease protection assay (qNPA) to quantify mRNA levels of 25 genes representing leukocyte differentiation markers, toll-like receptors (TLR), cytokines, chemokines, epithelial repair, microbicidal and vascular markers, by designing two multiplex arrays. Tissue sections were obtained from 36 rabbits (6 per treatment arm) after 14 daily applications of a placebo gel, saline, 4% nonoxynol-9 (N-9), and three combinations of the anti-HIV microbicides tenofovir (TFV) and UC781 in escalating concentrations (highest: 10% TFV + 2.5%UC781). Results showed that increased expression levels of toll-like receptor (TLR)-4, interleukin (IL)-1β, CXCL8, epithelial membrane protein (EMP)-1 (P < 0.05), and decreased levels of TLR2 (P < 0.05), TLR3 and bactericidal permeability increasing protein (BPI) (P < 0.001) were associated with cervicovaginal mucosal alteration (histopathology). Seven markers showed a significant linear trend predicting epithelial damage (up with CD4, IL-1β, CXCL8, CCL2, CCL21, EMP1 and down with BPI). Despite the low tissue damage RVI scores, the high-dose microbicide combination gel caused activation of HIV host cells (SLC and CD4) while N-9 caused proinflammatory gene upregulation (IL-8 and TLR4) suggesting a potential for increasing risk of HIV via different mechanisms depending on the chemical nature of the test product. - Highlights: • A transcriptome nuclease protection assay assessed microbicides for vaginal safety. • Biomarkers were

  2. Human iPSC-Derived Neuronal Model of Tau-A152T Frontotemporal Dementia Reveals Tau-Mediated Mechanisms of Neuronal Vulnerability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Catarina Silva

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Frontotemporal dementia (FTD and other tauopathies characterized by focal brain neurodegeneration and pathological accumulation of proteins are commonly associated with tau mutations. However, the mechanism of neuronal loss is not fully understood. To identify molecular events associated with tauopathy, we studied induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC-derived neurons from individuals carrying the tau-A152T variant. We highlight the potential of in-depth phenotyping of human neuronal cell models for pre-clinical studies and identification of modulators of endogenous tau toxicity. Through a panel of biochemical and cellular assays, A152T neurons showed accumulation, redistribution, and decreased solubility of tau. Upregulation of tau was coupled to enhanced stress-inducible markers and cell vulnerability to proteotoxic, excitotoxic, and mitochondrial stressors, which was rescued upon CRISPR/Cas9-mediated targeting of tau or by pharmacological activation of autophagy. Our findings unmask tau-mediated perturbations of specific pathways associated with neuronal vulnerability, revealing potential early disease biomarkers and therapeutic targets for FTD and other tauopathies.

  3. A Geometrically-Constrained Mathematical Model of Mammary Gland Ductal Elongation Reveals Novel Cellular Dynamics within the Terminal End Bud.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ingrid Paine

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Mathematics is often used to model biological systems. In mammary gland development, mathematical modeling has been limited to acinar and branching morphogenesis and breast cancer, without reference to normal duct formation. We present a model of ductal elongation that exploits the geometrically-constrained shape of the terminal end bud (TEB, the growing tip of the duct, and incorporates morphometrics, region-specific proliferation and apoptosis rates. Iterative model refinement and behavior analysis, compared with biological data, indicated that the traditional metric of nipple to the ductal front distance, or percent fat pad filled to evaluate ductal elongation rate can be misleading, as it disregards branching events that can reduce its magnitude. Further, model driven investigations of the fates of specific TEB cell types confirmed migration of cap cells into the body cell layer, but showed their subsequent preferential elimination by apoptosis, thus minimizing their contribution to the luminal lineage and the mature duct.

  4. Comparative Study of Bancruptcy Prediction Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isye Arieshanti

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Early indication of bancruptcy is important for a company. If companies aware of  potency of their bancruptcy, they can take a preventive action to anticipate the bancruptcy. In order to detect the potency of a bancruptcy, a company can utilize a a model of bancruptcy prediction. The prediction model can be built using a machine learning methods. However, the choice of machine learning methods should be performed carefully. Because the suitability of a model depends on the problem specifically. Therefore, in this paper we perform a comparative study of several machine leaning methods for bancruptcy prediction. According to the comparative study, the performance of several models that based on machine learning methods (k-NN, fuzzy k-NN, SVM, Bagging Nearest Neighbour SVM, Multilayer Perceptron(MLP, Hybrid of MLP + Multiple Linear Regression, it can be showed that fuzzy k-NN method achieve the best performance with accuracy 77.5%

  5. Atopic Dermatitis Studies through In Vitro Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evelyne De Vuyst

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Atopic dermatitis (AD is a complex inflammatory skin condition that is not fully understood. Epidermal barrier defects and Th2 immune response dysregulations are thought to play crucial roles in the pathogenesis of the disease. A vicious circle takes place between these alterations, and it can further be complicated by additional genetic and environmental factors. Studies investigating in more depth the etiology of the disease are thus needed in order to develop functional treatments. In recent years, there have been significant advances regarding in vitro models reproducing important features of AD. However, since a lot of models have been developed, finding the appropriate experimental setting can be difficult. Therefore, herein, we review the different types of in vitro models mimicking features of AD. The simplest models are two-dimensional culture systems composed of immune cells or keratinocytes, whereas three-dimensional skin or epidermal equivalents reconstitute more complex stratified tissues exhibiting barrier properties. In those models, hallmarks of AD are obtained, either by challenging tissues with interleukin cocktails overexpressed in AD epidermis or by silencing expression of pivotal genes encoding epidermal barrier proteins. Tissue equivalents cocultured with lymphocytes or containing AD patient cells are also described. Furthermore, each model is placed in its study context with a brief summary of the main results obtained. In conclusion, the described in vitro models are useful tools to better understand AD pathogenesis, but also to screen new compounds in the field of AD, which probably will open the way to new preventive or therapeutic strategies.

  6. Modeling and Study of the Cerenkov Effect

    CERN Document Server

    Angelov, I; Makovicka, L; Mishev, A; Stamenov, J N

    2003-01-01

    The studies realized in INRNE (Institute for Nuclear Research and Nuclear Energy) particulary in cosmic rays detection and construction of Muonic Cerenkov Telescope in University of Blagoevgrad [1] shows the need to develop a theoretical model based on observed phenomenon and to refine it for the detection system optimisation. The effect was introduced in EGS4 code system. The first simulations were consecrated to different geometry of water tank in total reflection. The model was compared with experimental data realised with gamma source using the telescope. A simple atmospheric model is introduced in EGS4. The comparison between CORSIKA and EGS4 codes was realised.

  7. Differential Equations Models to Study Quorum Sensing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Velázquez, Judith; Hense, Burkhard A

    2018-01-01

    Mathematical models to study quorum sensing (QS) have become an important tool to explore all aspects of this type of bacterial communication. A wide spectrum of mathematical tools and methods such as dynamical systems, stochastics, and spatial models can be employed. In this chapter, we focus on giving an overview of models consisting of differential equations (DE), which can be used to describe changing quantities, for example, the dynamics of one or more signaling molecule in time and space, often in conjunction with bacterial growth dynamics. The chapter is divided into two sections: ordinary differential equations (ODE) and partial differential equations (PDE) models of QS. Rates of change are represented mathematically by derivatives, i.e., in terms of DE. ODE models allow describing changes in one independent variable, for example, time. PDE models can be used to follow changes in more than one independent variable, for example, time and space. Both types of models often consist of systems (i.e., more than one equation) of equations, such as equations for bacterial growth and autoinducer concentration dynamics. Almost from the onset, mathematical modeling of QS using differential equations has been an interdisciplinary endeavor and many of the works we revised here will be placed into their biological context.

  8. Fungal diversity of "Tomme d'Orchies" cheese during the ripening process as revealed by a metagenomic study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceugniez, Alexandre; Taminiau, Bernard; Coucheney, Françoise; Jacques, Philippe; Delcenserie, Véronique; Daube, Georges; Drider, Djamel

    2017-10-03

    Tomme d'Orchies is an artisanal pressed and uncooked cheese produced and marketed in the north of France. This study aimed at showing the fungal microbiota evolution of this cheese using a metagenetic based Illumina technology targeting the ITS2 domain of 5.8S fungal rDNAs. To this end, samples were taken from the rind and the core of different cheeses, after 0, 1, 3, 7, 14 and 21days of ripening. The data underpinned the prevalence of Yarrowia lipolytica and Galactomyces geotrichum for both microbiotas. Unusual species including Clavispora lusitaniae, Kazachstania unispora and Cladosporium cladosporioides were also detected, but their origins remain to be ascertained. The metagenomic revealed also the presence of Kluyveromyces and Debaryomyces species. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Molecular data and ecological niche modelling reveal the Pleistocene history of a semi-aquatic bug (Microvelia douglasi douglasi) in East Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, Zhen; Zhu, Gengping; Chen, Pingping; Zhang, Danli; Bu, Wenjun

    2014-06-01

    This study investigated the Pleistocene history of a semi-aquatic bug, Microvelia douglasi douglasi Scott, 1874 (Hemiptera: Veliidae) in East Asia. We used M. douglasi douglasi as a model species to explore the effects of historical climatic fluctuations on montane semi-aquatic invertebrate species. Two hypotheses were developed using ecological niche models (ENMs). First, we hypothesized that M. douglasi douglasi persisted in suitable habitats in southern Guizhou, southern Yunnan, Hainan, Taiwan and southeast China during the LIG. After that, the populations expanded (Hypothesis 1). As the spatial prediction in the LGM was significantly larger than in the LIG, we then hypothesized that the population expanded during the LIG to LGM transition (Hypothesis 2). We tested these hypotheses using mitochondrial data (COI+COII) and nuclear data (ITS1+5.8S+ITS2). Young lineages, relatively deep splits, lineage differentiation among mountain ranges in central, south and southwest China and high genetic diversities were observed in these suitable habitats. Evidence of mismatch distributions and neutrality tests indicate that a population expansion occurred in the late Pleistocene. The Bayesian skyline plot (BSP) revealed an unusual population expansion that likely happened during the cooling transition between LIG and LGM. The results of genetic data were mostly consistent with the spatial predictions from ENM, a finding that can profoundly improve phylogeographic research. The ecological requirements of M. douglasi douglasi, together with the geographical heterogeneity and climatic fluctuations of Pleistocene in East Asia, could have shaped this unusual demographic history. Our study contributes to our knowledge of semi-aquatic bug/invertebrate responses to Pleistocene climatic fluctuations in East Asia. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. An integrated study reveals diverse methanogens, Thaumarchaeota, and yet-uncultivated archaeal lineages in Armenian hot springs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hedlund, Brian P; Dodsworth, Jeremy A; Cole, Jessica K; Panosyan, Hovik H

    2013-07-01

    Culture-independent and enrichment techniques, with an emphasis on members of the Archaea, were used to determine the composition and structure of microbial communities inhabiting microbial mats in the source pools of two geothermal springs near the towns of Arzakan and Jermuk in Armenia. Amplification of small-subunit rRNA genes using "universal" primers followed by pyrosequencing (pyrotags) revealed highly diverse microbial communities in both springs, with >99 % of pyrosequences corresponding to members of the domain Bacteria. The spring in Arzakan was colonized by a photosynthetic mat dominated by Cyanobacteria, in addition to Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Chloroflexi, Spirochaeta and a diversity of other Bacteria. The spring in Jermuk was colonized by phylotypes related to sulfur, iron, and hydrogen chemolithotrophs in the Betaproteobacteria and Epsilonproteobacteria, along with a diversity of other Bacteria. Analysis of near full-length small subunit rRNA genes amplified using Archaea-specific primers showed that both springs are inhabited by a diversity of methanogens, including Methanomicrobiales and Methanosarcinales and relatives of Methanomassiliicoccus luminyensis, close relatives of the ammonia-oxidizing archaeon (AOA) "Candidatus Nitrososphaera gargensis", and the yet-uncultivated Miscellaneous Crenarchaeotal Group and Deep Hydrothermal Vent Crenarchaeota group 1. Methanogenic enrichments confirmed the predicted physiological diversity, revealing methylotrophic, acetoclastic, and hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis at 45 and 55 °C, but not 65 °C. This is one of only a few studies combining cultivation-independent and -dependent approaches to study archaea in moderate-temperature (37-73 °C) terrestrial geothermal environments and suggests important roles for methanogenic archaea and AOA in the carbon and nitrogen biogeochemical cycles in these environments.

  11. Proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy reveals neuroprotection by oral minocycline in a nonhuman primate model of accelerated NeuroAIDS.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva-Maria Ratai

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Despite the advent of highly active anti-retroviral therapy (HAART, HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders continue to be a significant problem. In efforts to understand and alleviate neurocognitive deficits associated with HIV, we used an accelerated simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV macaque model of NeuroAIDS to test whether minocycline is neuroprotective against lentiviral-induced neuronal injury.Eleven rhesus macaques were infected with SIV, depleted of CD8+ lymphocytes, and studied until eight weeks post inoculation (wpi. Seven animals received daily minocycline orally beginning at 4 wpi. Neuronal integrity was monitored in vivo by proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy and post-mortem by immunohistochemistry for synaptophysin (SYN, microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2, and neuronal counts. Astrogliosis and microglial activation were quantified by measuring glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP and ionized calcium binding adaptor molecule 1 (IBA-1, respectively. SIV infection followed by CD8+ cell depletion induced a progressive decline in neuronal integrity evidenced by declining N-acetylaspartate/creatine (NAA/Cr, which was arrested with minocycline treatment. The recovery of this ratio was due to increases in NAA, indicating neuronal recovery, and decreases in Cr, likely reflecting downregulation of glial cell activation. SYN, MAP2, and neuronal counts were found to be higher in minocycline-treated animals compared to untreated animals while GFAP and IBA-1 expression were decreased compared to controls. CSF and plasma viral loads were lower in MN-treated animals.In conclusion, oral minocycline alleviates neuronal damage induced by the AIDS virus.

  12. SNP discovery and chromosome anchoring provide the first physically-anchored hexaploid oat map and reveal synteny with model species.

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    Rebekah E Oliver

    Full Text Available A physically anchored consensus map is foundational to modern genomics research; however, construction of such a map in oat (Avena sativa L., 2n = 6x = 42 has been hindered by the size and complexity of the genome, the scarcity of robust molecular markers, and the lack of aneuploid stocks. Resources developed in this study include a modified SNP discovery method for complex genomes, a diverse set of oat SNP markers, and a novel chromosome-deficient SNP anchoring strategy. These resources were applied to build the first complete, physically-anchored consensus map of hexaploid oat. Approximately 11,000 high-confidence in silico SNPs were discovered based on nine million inter-varietal sequence reads of genomic and cDNA origin. GoldenGate genotyping of 3,072 SNP assays yielded 1,311 robust markers, of which 985 were mapped in 390 recombinant-inbred lines from six bi-parental mapping populations ranging in size from 49 to 97 progeny. The consensus map included 985 SNPs and 68 previously-published markers, resolving 21 linkage groups with a total map distance of 1,838.8 cM. Consensus linkage groups were assigned to 21 chromosomes using SNP deletion analysis of chromosome-deficient monosomic hybrid stocks. Alignments with sequenced genomes of rice and Brachypodium provide evidence for extensive conservation of genomic regions, and renewed encouragement for orthology-based genomic discovery in this important hexaploid species. These results also provide a framework for high-resolution genetic analysis in oat, and a model for marker development and map construction in other species with complex genomes and limited resources.

  13. A zebrafish model of congenital disorders of glycosylation with phosphomannose isomerase deficiency reveals an early opportunity for corrective mannose supplementation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaime Chu

    2013-01-01

    Individuals with congenital disorders of glycosylation (CDG have recessive mutations in genes required for protein N-glycosylation, resulting in multi-systemic disease. Despite the well-characterized biochemical consequences in these individuals, the underlying cellular defects that contribute to CDG are not well understood. Synthesis of the lipid-linked oligosaccharide (LLO, which serves as the sugar donor for the N-glycosylation of secretory proteins, requires conversion of fructose-6-phosphate to mannose-6-phosphate via the phosphomannose isomerase (MPI enzyme. Individuals who are deficient in MPI present with bleeding, diarrhea, edema, gastrointestinal bleeding and liver fibrosis. MPI-CDG patients can be treated with oral mannose supplements, which is converted to mannose-6-phosphate through a minor complementary metabolic pathway, restoring protein glycosylation and ameliorating most symptoms, although liver disease continues to progress. Because Mpi deletion in mice causes early embryonic lethality and thus is difficult to study, we used zebrafish to establish a model of MPI-CDG. We used a morpholino to block mpi mRNA translation and established a concentration that consistently yielded 13% residual Mpi enzyme activity at 4 days post-fertilization (dpf, which is within the range of MPI activity detected in fibroblasts from MPI-CDG patients. Fluorophore-assisted carbohydrate electrophoresis detected decreased LLO and N-glycans in mpi morphants. These deficiencies resulted in 50% embryonic lethality by 4 dpf. Multi-systemic abnormalities, including small eyes, dysmorphic jaws, pericardial edema, a small liver and curled tails, occurred in 82% of the surviving larvae. Importantly, these phenotypes could be rescued with mannose supplementation. Thus, parallel processes in fish and humans contribute to the phenotypes caused by Mpi depletion. Interestingly, mannose was only effective if provided prior to 24 hpf. These data provide insight into treatment efficacy

  14. A pan-European epidemiological study reveals honey bee colony survival depends on beekeeper education and disease control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacques, Antoine; Laurent, Marion; Ribière-Chabert, Magali; Saussac, Mathilde; Bougeard, Stéphanie; Budge, Giles E; Hendrikx, Pascal; Chauzat, Marie-Pierre

    2017-01-01

    Reports of honey bee population decline has spurred many national efforts to understand the extent of the problem and to identify causative or associated factors. However, our collective understanding of the factors has been hampered by a lack of joined up trans-national effort. Moreover, the impacts of beekeeper knowledge and beekeeping management practices have often been overlooked, despite honey bees being a managed pollinator. Here, we established a standardised active monitoring network for 5 798 apiaries over two consecutive years to quantify honey bee colony mortality across 17 European countries. Our data demonstrate that overwinter losses ranged between 2% and 32%, and that high summer losses were likely to follow high winter losses. Multivariate Poisson regression models revealed that hobbyist beekeepers with small apiaries and little experience in beekeeping had double the winter mortality rate when compared to professional beekeepers. Furthermore, honey bees kept by professional beekeepers never showed signs of disease, unlike apiaries from hobbyist beekeepers that had symptoms of bacterial infection and heavy Varroa infestation. Our data highlight beekeeper background and apicultural practices as major drivers of honey bee colony losses. The benefits of conducting trans-national monitoring schemes and improving beekeeper training are discussed.

  15. A pan-European epidemiological study reveals honey bee colony survival depends on beekeeper education and disease control.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antoine Jacques

    Full Text Available Reports of honey bee population decline has spurred many national efforts to understand the extent of the problem and to identify causative or associated factors. However, our collective understanding of the factors has been hampered by a lack of joined up trans-national effort. Moreover, the impacts of beekeeper knowledge and beekeeping management practices have often been overlooked, despite honey bees being a managed pollinator. Here, we established a standardised active monitoring network for 5 798 apiaries over two consecutive years to quantify honey bee colony mortality across 17 European countries. Our data demonstrate that overwinter losses ranged between 2% and 32%, and that high summer losses were likely to follow high winter losses. Multivariate Poisson regression models revealed that hobbyist beekeepers with small apiaries and little experience in beekeeping had double the winter mortality rate when compared to professional beekeepers. Furthermore, honey bees kept by professional beekeepers never showed signs of disease, unlike apiaries from hobbyist beekeepers that had symptoms of bacterial infection and heavy Varroa infestation. Our data highlight beekeeper background and apicultural practices as major drivers of honey bee colony losses. The benefits of conducting trans-national monitoring schemes and improving beekeeper training are discussed.

  16. Marine geophysics. New global marine gravity model from CryoSat-2 and Jason-1 reveals buried tectonic structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandwell, David T; Müller, R Dietmar; Smith, Walter H F; Garcia, Emmanuel; Francis, Richard

    2014-10-03

    Gravity models are powerful tools for mapping tectonic structures, especially in the deep ocean basins where the topography remains unmapped by ships or is buried by thick sediment. We combined new radar altimeter measurements from satellites CryoSat-2 and Jason-1 with existing data to construct a global marine gravity model that is two times more accurate than previous models. We found an extinct spreading ridge in the Gulf of Mexico, a major propagating rift in the South Atlantic Ocean, abyssal hill fabric on slow-spreading ridges, and thousands of previously uncharted seamounts. These discoveries allow us to understand regional tectonic processes and highlight the importance of satellite-derived gravity models as one of the primary tools for the investigation of remote ocean basins. Copyright © 2014, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  17. FTIR-ATR-based prediction and modelling of lignin and energy contents reveals independent intra-specific variation of these traits in bioenergy poplars

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taylor Gail

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is an increasing demand for renewable resources to replace fossil fuels. However, different applications such as the production of secondary biofuels or combustion for energy production require different wood properties. Therefore, high-throughput methods are needed for rapid screening of wood in large scale samples, e.g., to evaluate the outcome of tree breeding or genetic engineering. In this study, we investigated the intra-specific variability of lignin and energy contents in extractive-free wood of hybrid poplar progenies (Populus trichocarpa × deltoides and tested if the range was sufficient for the development of quantitative prediction models based on Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR. Since lignin is a major energy-bearing compound, we expected that the energy content of wood would be positively correlated with the lignin content. Results Lignin contents of extractive-free poplar wood samples determined by the acetyl bromide method ranged from 23.4% to 32.1%, and the calorific values measured with a combustion calorimeter varied from 17260 to 19767 J g-1. For the development of calibration models partial least square regression and cross validation was applied to correlate FTIR spectra determined with an attenuated total reflectance (ATR unit to measured values of lignin or energy contents. The best models with high coefficients of determination (R2 (calibration = 0.91 and 0.90; R2 (cross-validation = 0.81 and 0.79 and low root mean square errors of cross validation (RMSECV = 0.77% and 62 J g-1 for lignin and energy determination, respectively, were obtained after data pre-processing and automatic wavenumber restriction. The calibration models were validated by analyses of independent sets of wood samples yielding R2 = 0.88 and 0.86 for lignin and energy contents, respectively. Conclusions These results show that FTIR-ATR spectroscopy is suitable as a high-throughput method for lignin and energy

  18. Genome-wide association studies with proteomics data reveal genes important for synthesis, transport and packaging of globulins in legume seeds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Signor, Christine; Aimé, Delphine; Bordat, Amandine; Belghazi, Maya; Labas, Valérie; Gouzy, Jérôme; Young, Nevin D; Prosperi, Jean-Marie; Leprince, Olivier; Thompson, Richard D; Buitink, Julia; Burstin, Judith; Gallardo, Karine

    2017-06-01

    Improving nutritional seed quality is an important challenge in grain legume breeding. However, the genes controlling the differential accumulation of globulins, which are major contributors to seed nutritional value in legumes, remain largely unknown. We combined a search for protein quantity loci with genome-wide association studies on the abundance of 7S and 11S globulins in seeds of the model legume species Medicago truncatula. Identified genomic regions and genes carrying polymorphisms linked to globulin variations were then cross-compared with pea (Pisum sativum), leading to the identification of candidate genes for the regulation of globulin abundance in this crop. Key candidates identified include genes involved in transcription, chromatin remodeling, post-translational modifications, transport and targeting of proteins to storage vacuoles. Inference of a gene coexpression network of 12 candidate transcription factors and globulin genes revealed the transcription factor ABA-insensitive 5 (ABI5) as a highly connected hub. Characterization of loss-of-function abi5 mutants in pea uncovered a role for ABI5 in controlling the relative abundance of vicilin, a sulfur-poor 7S globulin, in pea seeds. This demonstrates the feasibility of using genome-wide association studies in M. truncatula to reveal genes that can be modulated to improve seed nutritional value. © 2017 INRA. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  19. QUALITY OF AN ACADEMIC STUDY PROGRAMME - EVALUATION MODEL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mirna Macur

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Quality of an academic study programme is evaluated by many: employees (internal evaluation and by external evaluators: experts, agencies and organisations. Internal and external evaluation of an academic programme follow written structure that resembles on one of the quality models. We believe the quality models (mostly derived from EFQM excellence model don’t fit very well into non-profit activities, policies and programmes, because they are much more complex than environment, from which quality models derive from (for example assembly line. Quality of an academic study programme is very complex and understood differently by various stakeholders, so we present dimensional evaluation in the article. Dimensional evaluation, as opposed to component and holistic evaluation, is a form of analytical evaluation in which the quality of value of the evaluand is determined by looking at its performance on multiple dimensions of merit or evaluation criteria. First stakeholders of a study programme and their views, expectations and interests are presented, followed by evaluation criteria. They are both joined into the evaluation model revealing which evaluation criteria can and should be evaluated by which stakeholder. Main research questions are posed and research method for each dimension listed.

  20. An empirical model of the Baltic Sea reveals the importance of social dynamics for ecological regime shifts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lade, Steven J; Niiranen, Susa; Hentati-Sundberg, Jonas; Blenckner, Thorsten; Boonstra, Wiebren J; Orach, Kirill; Quaas, Martin F; Österblom, Henrik; Schlüter, Maja

    2015-09-01

    Regime shifts triggered by human activities and environmental changes have led to significant ecological and socioeconomic consequences in marine and terrestrial ecosystems worldwide. Ecological processes and feedbacks associated with regime shifts have received considerable attention, but human individual and collective behavior is rarely treated as an integrated component of such shifts. Here, we used generalized modeling to develop a coupled social-ecological model that integrated rich social and ecological data to investigate the role of social dynamics in the 1980s Baltic Sea cod boom and collapse. We showed that psychological, economic, and regulatory aspects of fisher decision making, in addition to ecological interactions, contributed both to the temporary persistence of the cod boom and to its subsequent collapse. These features of the social-ecological system also would have limited the effectiveness of stronger fishery regulations. Our results provide quantitative, empirical evidence that incorporating social dynamics into models of natural resources is critical for understanding how resources can be managed sustainably. We also show that generalized modeling, which is well-suited to collaborative model development and does not require detailed specification of causal relationships between system variables, can help tackle the complexities involved in creating and analyzing social-ecological models.

  1. Studi Model Penerimaan Tehnologi (Technology Acceptance Model) Novice Accountant

    OpenAIRE

    Rustiana, Rustiana

    2006-01-01

    This study investigates adoption or application of behavior information technologyacceptance. Davis' Technology Acceptance Model is employed to explain perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, and intention to use in information systems. The respondents were 228 accounting students in management information system. Data was collected by questionnaire and then analyzed by using linear regression analysis and independent t-test. The results are in line with most of the hypotheses, only hypo...

  2. Mixed models in cerebral ischemia study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matheus Henrique Dal Molin Ribeiro

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The data modeling from longitudinal studies stands out in the current scientific scenario, especially in the areas of health and biological sciences, which induces a correlation between measurements for the same observed unit. Thus, the modeling of the intra-individual dependency is required through the choice of a covariance structure that is able to receive and accommodate the sample variability. However, the lack of methodology for correlated data analysis may result in an increased occurrence of type I or type II errors and underestimate/overestimate the standard errors of the model estimates. In the present study, a Gaussian mixed model was adopted for the variable response latency of an experiment investigating the memory deficits in animals subjected to cerebral ischemia when treated with fish oil (FO. The model parameters estimation was based on maximum likelihood methods. Based on the restricted likelihood ratio test and information criteria, the autoregressive covariance matrix was adopted for errors. The diagnostic analyses for the model were satisfactory, since basic assumptions and results obtained corroborate with biological evidence; that is, the effectiveness of the FO treatment to alleviate the cognitive effects caused by cerebral ischemia was found.

  3. Striatal and Hippocampal Entropy and Recognition Signals in Category Learning: Simultaneous Processes Revealed by Model-Based fMRI

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Tyler; Love, Bradley C.; Preston, Alison R.

    2012-01-01

    Category learning is a complex phenomenon that engages multiple cognitive processes, many of which occur simultaneously and unfold dynamically over time. For example, as people encounter objects in the world, they simultaneously engage processes to determine their fit with current knowledge structures, gather new information about the objects, and adjust their representations to support behavior in future encounters. Many techniques that are available to understand the neural basis of category learning assume that the multiple processes that subserve it can be neatly separated between different trials of an experiment. Model-based functional magnetic resonance imaging offers a promising tool to separate multiple, simultaneously occurring processes and bring the analysis of neuroimaging data more in line with category learning’s dynamic and multifaceted nature. We use model-based imaging to explore the neural basis of recognition and entropy signals in the medial temporal lobe and striatum that are engaged while participants learn to categorize novel stimuli. Consistent with theories suggesting a role for the anterior hippocampus and ventral striatum in motivated learning in response to uncertainty, we find that activation in both regions correlates with a model-based measure of entropy. Simultaneously, separate subregions of the hippocampus and striatum exhibit activation correlated with a model-based recognition strength measure. Our results suggest that model-based analyses are exceptionally useful for extracting information about cognitive processes from neuroimaging data. Models provide a basis for identifying the multiple neural processes that contribute to behavior, and neuroimaging data can provide a powerful test bed for constraining and testing model predictions. PMID:22746951

  4. Revealing the burden of maternal mortality: a probabilistic model for determining pregnancy-related causes of death from verbal autopsies

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    Desta Teklay

    2007-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Substantial reductions in maternal mortality are called for in Millennium Development Goal 5 (MDG-5, thus assuming that maternal mortality is measurable. A key difficulty is attributing causes of death for the many women who die unaided in developing countries. Verbal autopsy (VA can elicit circumstances of death, but data need to be interpreted reliably and consistently to serve as global indicators. Recent developments in probabilistic modelling of VA interpretation are adapted and assessed here for the specific circumstances of pregnancy-related death. Methods A preliminary version of the InterVA-M probabilistic VA interpretation model was developed and refined with adult female VA data from several sources, and then assessed against 258 additional VA interviews from Burkina Faso. Likely causes of death produced by the model were compared with causes previously determined by local physicians. Distinction was made between free-text and closed-question data in the VA interviews, to assess the added value of free-text material on the model's output. Results Following rationalisation between the model and physician interpretations, cause-specific mortality fractions were broadly similar. Case-by-case agreement between the model and any of the reviewing physicians reached approximately 60%, rising to approximately 80% when cases with a discrepancy were reviewed by an additional physician. Cardiovascular disease and malaria showed the largest differences between the methods, and the attribution of infections related to pregnancy also varied. The model estimated 30% of deaths to be pregnancy-related, of which half were due to direct causes. Data derived from free-text made no appreciable difference. Conclusion InterVA-M represents a potentially valuable new tool for measuring maternal mortality in an efficient, consistent and standardised way. Further development, refinement and validation are planned. It could become a routine

  5. A translational murine model of sub-lethal intoxication with Shiga toxin 2 reveals novel ultrastructural findings in the brain striatum.

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    Carla Tironi-Farinati

    Full Text Available Infection by Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli causes hemorrhagic colitis, hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS, acute renal failure, and also central nervous system complications in around 30% of the children affected. Besides, neurological deficits are one of the most unrepairable and untreatable outcomes of HUS. Study of the striatum is relevant because basal ganglia are one of the brain areas most commonly affected in patients that have suffered from HUS and since the deleterious effects of a sub-lethal dose of Shiga toxin have never been studied in the striatum, the purpose of this study was to attempt to simulate an infection by Shiga toxin-producing E. coli in a murine model. To this end, intravenous administration of a sub-lethal dose of Shiga toxin 2 (0.5 ηg per mouse was used and the correlation between neurological manifestations and ultrastructural changes in striatal brain cells was studied in detail. Neurological manifestations included significant motor behavior abnormalities in spontaneous motor activity, gait, pelvic elevation and hind limb activity eight days after administration of the toxin. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that the toxin caused early perivascular edema two days after administration, as well as significant damage in astrocytes four days after administration and significant damage in neurons and oligodendrocytes eight days after administration. Interrupted synapses and mast cell extravasation were also found eight days after administration of the toxin. We thus conclude that the chronological order of events observed in the striatum could explain the neurological disorders found eight days after administration of the toxin.

  6. Integrative analysis and expression profiling of secondary cell wall genes in C4 biofuel model Setaria italica reveals targets for lignocellulose bioengineering

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    Mehanathan eMuthamilarasan

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Several underutilized grasses have excellent potential for use as bioenergy feedstock due to their lignocellulosic biomass. Genomic tools have enabled identification of lignocellulose biosynthesis genes in several sequenced plants. However, the non-availability of whole genome sequence of bioenergy grasses hinders the study on bioenergy genomics and their genomics-assisted crop improvement. Foxtail millet (Setaria italica L.; Si is a model crop for studying systems biology of bioenergy grasses. In the present study, a systematic approach has been used for identification of gene families involved in cellulose (CesA/Csl, callose (Gsl and monolignol biosynthesis (PAL, C4H, 4CL, HCT, C3H, CCoAOMT, F5H, COMT, CCR, CAD and construction of physical map of foxtail millet. Sequence alignment and phylogenetic analysis of identified proteins showed that monolignol biosynthesis proteins were highly diverse, whereas CesA/Csl and Gsl proteins were homologous to rice and Arabidopsis. Comparative mapping of foxtail millet lignocellulose biosynthesis genes with other C4 panicoid genomes revealed maximum homology with switchgrass, followed by sorghum and maize. Expression profiling of candidate lignocellulose genes in response to different abiotic stresses and hormone treatments showed their differential expression pattern, with significant higher expression of SiGsl12, SiPAL2, SiHCT1, SiF5H2 and SiCAD6 genes. Further, due to the evolutionary conservation of grass genomes, the insights gained from the present study could be extrapolated for identifying genes involved in lignocellulose biosynthesis in other biofuel species for further characterization.

  7. A transcriptomic study reveals differentially expressed genes and pathways respond to simulated acid rain in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Ting-Wu; Niu, Li; Fu, Bin; Chen, Juan; Wu, Fei-Hua; Chen, Juan; Wang, Wen-Hua; Hu, Wen-Jun; He, Jun-Xian; Zheng, Hai-Lei

    2013-01-01

    Acid rain, as a worldwide environmental issue, can cause serious damage to plants. In this study, we provided the first case study on the systematic responses of arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh.) to simulated acid rain (SiAR) by transcriptome approach. Transcriptomic analysis revealed that the expression of a set of genes related to primary metabolisms, including nitrogen, sulfur, amino acid, photosynthesis, and reactive oxygen species metabolism, were altered under SiAR. In addition, transport and signal transduction related pathways, especially calcium-related signaling pathways, were found to play important roles in the response of arabidopsis to SiAR stress. Further, we compared our data set with previously published data sets on arabidopsis transcriptome subjected to various stresses, including wound, salt, light, heavy metal, karrikin, temperature, osmosis, etc. The results showed that many genes were overlapped in several stresses, suggesting that plant response to SiAR is a complex process, which may require the participation of multiple defense-signaling pathways. The results of this study will help us gain further insights into the response mechanisms of plants to acid rain stress.

  8. Cross-study and cross-omics comparisons of three nephrotoxic compounds reveal mechanistic insights and new candidate biomarkers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Matheis, Katja A.; Com, Emmanuelle; Gautier, Jean-Charles; Guerreiro, Nelson; Brandenburg, Arnd; Gmuender, Hans; Sposny, Alexandra; Hewitt, Philip; Amberg, Alexander; Boernsen, Olaf; Riefke, Bjoern; Hoffmann, Dana; Mally, Angela; Kalkuhl, Arno; Suter, Laura; Dieterle, Frank; Staedtler, Frank

    2011-01-01

    The European InnoMed-PredTox project was a collaborative effort between 15 pharmaceutical companies, 2 small and mid-sized enterprises, and 3 universities with the goal of delivering deeper insights into the molecular mechanisms of kidney and liver toxicity and to identify mechanism-linked diagnostic or prognostic safety biomarker candidates by combining conventional toxicological parameters with 'omics' data. Mechanistic toxicity studies with 16 different compounds, 2 dose levels, and 3 time points were performed in male Crl: WI(Han) rats. Three of the 16 investigated compounds, BI-3 (FP007SE), Gentamicin (FP009SF), and IMM125 (FP013NO), induced kidney proximal tubule damage (PTD). In addition to histopathology and clinical chemistry, transcriptomics microarray and proteomics 2D-DIGE analysis were performed. Data from the three PTD studies were combined for a cross-study and cross-omics meta-analysis of the target organ. The mechanistic interpretation of kidney PTD-associated deregulated transcripts revealed, in addition to previously described kidney damage transcript biomarkers such as KIM-1, CLU and TIMP-1, a number of additional deregulated pathways congruent with histopathology observations on a single animal basis, including a specific effect on the complement system. The identification of new, more specific biomarker candidates for PTD was most successful when transcriptomics data were used. Combining transcriptomics data with proteomics data added extra value.

  9. Parametric study of a thorium model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lourenco, M.C.; Lipsztein, J.L.; Szwarcwald, C.L.

    2002-01-01

    Models for radionuclides distribution in the human body and dosimetry involve assumptions on the biokinetic behavior of the material among compartments representing organs and tissues in the body. One of the most important problem in biokinetic modeling is the assignment of transfer coefficients and biological half-lives to body compartments. In Brazil there are many areas of high natural radioactivity, where the population is chronically exposed to radionuclides of the thorium series. The uncertainties of the thorium biokinetic model are a major cause of uncertainty in the estimates of the committed dose equivalent of the population living in high background areas. The purpose of this study is to discuss the variability in the thorium activities accumulated in the body compartments in relation to the variations in the transfer coefficients and compartments biological half-lives of a thorium-recycling model for continuous exposure. Multiple regression analysis methods were applied to analyze the results. (author)

  10. Process modeling study of the CIF incinerator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hang, T.

    1995-01-01

    The Savannah River Site (SRS) plans to begin operating the Consolidated Incineration Facility (CIF) in 1996. The CIF will treat liquid and solid low-level radioactive, mixed and RCRA hazardous wastes generated at SRS. In addition to experimental test programs, process modeling was applied to provide guidance in areas of safety, environmental regulation compliances, process improvement and optimization. A steady-state flowsheet model was used to calculate material/energy balances and to track key chemical constituents throughout the process units. Dynamic models were developed to predict the CIF transient characteristics in normal and abnormal operation scenarios. Predictions include the rotary kiln heat transfer, dynamic responses of the CIF to fluctuations in the solid waste feed or upsets in the system equipments, performance of the control system, air inleakage in the kiln, etc. This paper reviews the modeling study performed to assist in the deflagration risk assessment

  11. Gene expression profiling in a mouse model of retinal vein occlusion induced by laser treatment reveals a predominant inflammatory and tissue damage response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Gottfried; Conrad, David; Cakir, Bertan; Schlunck, Günther; Agostini, Hansjürgen T

    2018-01-01

    Retinal vein occlusion (RVO) has been investigated in several laser-induced animal models using pigs, rabbits and rats. However, laser-induced RVO has been rarely reported in mice, despite the impressive number of available mutants, ease of handling and cost effectiveness. The aim of this study was to further assess the feasibility of a RVO mouse model for gene expression analysis and its possible use to investigate effects of hypoxia. C57Bl/6J mice were injected with eosin Y for photo-sensitization. Subsequently, large retinal veins were laser-treated in one eye to induce vascular occlusion. Contralateral control eyes received non-occlusive retinal laser treatment sparing large vessels. The animals were followed for up to eight days and assessed by funduscopy, angiography, hypoxyprobe staining, histopathology and gene expression analysis by qPCR and RNA sequencing (RNAseq). Another group of mice was left untreated and studied at a single time point to determine baseline characteristics. Laser-induced RVO persisted in half of the treated veins for three days, and in a third of the veins for the whole observation period of 8 days. Funduscopy revealed large areas of retinal swelling in all laser-treated eyes, irrespective of vascular targeting or occlusion status. Damage of the outer retina, retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), and even choroid and sclera at the laser site was observed in histological sections. Genes associated with inflammation or cell damage were highly up-regulated in all laser-treated eyes as detected by RNAseq and qPCR. Retinal hypoxia was observed by hypoxyprobe staining in all RVO eyes for up to 5 days with a maximal extension at days 2 and 3, but no significant RVO-dependent changes in gene expression were detected for angiogenesis- or hypoxia-related genes. The laser-induced RVO mouse model is characterized by a predominant general inflammatory and tissue damage response, which may obscure distinct hypoxia- and angiogenesis-related effects. A

  12. A Case Study Application Of Time Study Model In Paint ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This paper presents a case study in the development and application of a time study model in a paint manufacturing company. The organization specializes in the production of different grades of paint and paint containers. The paint production activities include; weighing of raw materials, drying of raw materials, dissolving ...

  13. Revealing the control of migratory fueling: An integrated approach combining laboratory and field studies in northern wheatears Oenanthe oenanthe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franz BAIRLEIN,Volker DIERSCHKE, Julia DELINGAT, Cas EIKENAAR, Ivan MAGGINI, Marc BULTE, Heiko SCHMALJOHANN

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Migratory birds rely on fueling prior to migratory flights. Fueling in migrants is controlled by intrinsic as well as extrinsic factors. From captive studies we have started understanding the internal mechanisms controlling bird migration. Field studies have demonstrated the effects of external factors, such as food availability, weather, competitors, parasites or diseases, on the stopover behavior of migrants. However, an integrated approach is still missing to study coherently how the innate migration program interacts with the varying environmental cues and to estimate the contribution of the innate migration program and the environment to realized migration. The northern wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe offers a unique opportunity for integrated studies. It breeds across almost the whole Holarctic with just a “gap” between eastern Canada and Alaska. All breeding populations overwinter in sub-Saharan Africa which makes the northern wheatear one of the most long-distant migratory songbirds with extraordinary long non-stop flights across oceans. It is a nocturnal migrant which travels without parental or social aid/guidance. Thus, young birds rely entirely on endogenous mechanisms of timing, route selection and fueling on their first outbound migration. By establishing indoor housing under controlled conditions the endogenous control mechanisms of northern wheatear migration could be revealed. At the same time, environmental factors controlling fueling could be investigated in the field. On migration wheatears occur in a variety of habitats with sparse vegetation where their stopover behavior could be quantitatively studied in the light of “optimal migration” theory by the use of remote balances, radio-tagging and even experimentally manipulated food availability. The present paper summarizes our approach to understand the control of migration in northern wheatears by combining field and laboratory studies at various spatial and temporal

  14. Site-directed mutagenesis under the direction of in silico protein docking modeling reveals the active site residues of 3-ketosteroid-Δ1-dehydrogenase from Mycobacterium neoaurum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qin, Ning; Shen, Yanbing; Yang, Xu; Su, Liqiu; Tang, Rui; Li, Wei; Wang, Min

    2017-07-01

    3-Ketosteroid-Δ 1 -dehydrogenases (KsdD) from Mycobacterium neoaurum could transform androst-4-ene-3,17-dione (AD) to androst-1,4-diene-3,17-dione. This reaction has a significant effect on the product of pharmaceutical steroid. The crystal structure and active site residues information of KsdD from Mycobacterium is not yet available, which result in the engineering of KsdD is tedious. In this study, by the way of protein modeling and site-directed mutagenesis, we find that, Y122, Y125, S138, E140 and Y541 from the FAD-binding domain and Y365 from the catalytic domain play a key role in this transformation. Compared with the wild type, the decline in AD conversion for mutants illustrated that Y125, Y365, and Y541 were essential to the function of KsdD. Y122, S138 and E140 contributed to the catalysis of KsdD. The following analysis revealed the catalysis mechanism of these mutations in KsdD of Mycobacterium. These information presented here facilitate the manipulation of the catalytic properties of the enzyme to improve its application in the pharmaceutical steroid industry.

  15. Bifurcation Analysis of an Existing Mathematical Model Reveals Novel Treatment Strategies and Suggests Potential Cure for Type 1 Diabetes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Kenneth Hagde Mandrup; Ottesen, Johnny T.; Pociot, Flemming

    2014-01-01

    Type 1 diabetes is a disease with serious personal and socioeconomic consequences that has attracted the attention of modellers recently. But as models of this disease tend to be complicated, there has been only limited mathematical analysis to date. Here we address this problem by providing...... a bifurcation analysis of a previously published mathematical model for the early stages of type 1 diabetes in diabetes-prone NOD mice, which is based on the data available in the literature. We also show positivity and the existence of a family of attracting trapping regions in the positive 5D cone, converging...... towards a smaller trapping region, which is the intersection over the family. All these trapping regions are compact sets, and thus, practical weak persistence is guaranteed. We conclude our analysis by proposing 4 novel treatment strategies: increasing the phagocytic ability of resting macrophages...

  16. Primordial germ cell development in the marmoset monkey as revealed by pluripotency factor expression: suggestion of a novel model of embryonic germ cell translocation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aeckerle, N; Drummer, C; Debowski, K; Viebahn, C; Behr, R

    2015-01-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are the embryonic progenitors of sperm and egg cells. Mammalian PGCs are thought to actively migrate from the yolk sac endoderm over long distances across the embryo to reach the somatic genital ridges. The general principles of mammalian PGC development were discovered in mice. In contrast, little is known about PGC development in primates due to extremely limited access to primate embryos. Here, we analyzed 12 well preserved marmoset monkey (Callithrix jacchus) embryos covering the phase from PGC emergence in the endoderm to the formation of the sexually differentiated gonad (embryonic day (E) 50 to E95). We show using immunohistochemistry that the pluripotency factors OCT4A and NANOG specifically mark PGCs throughout the period studied. In contrast, SALL4 and LIN28 were first expressed ubiquitously and only later down-regulated in somatic tissues. We further show, for the first time, that PGCs are located in the endoderm in E50 embryos in close spatial proximity to the prospective genital ridge, making a long-range migration of PGCs dispensable. At E65, PGCs are already present in the primitive gonad, while significantly later embryonic stages still exhibit PGCs at their original endodermal site, revealing a wide spatio-temporal window of PGC distribution. Our findings challenge the 'dogma' of active long-range PGC migration from the endoderm to the gonads. We therefore favor an alternative model based primarily on passive translocation of PGCs from the mesenchyme that surrounds the gut to the prospective gonad through the intercalar expansion of mesenchymal tissue which contains the PGCs. In summary, we (i) show differential pluripotency factor expression during primate embryo development and (ii) provide a schematic model for embryonic PGC translocation. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology.

  17. A zebrafish model of lethal congenital contracture syndrome 1 reveals Gle1 function in spinal neural precursor survival and motor axon arborization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jao, Li-En; Appel, Bruce; Wente, Susan R

    2012-04-01

    In humans, GLE1 is mutated in lethal congenital contracture syndrome 1 (LCCS1) leading to prenatal death of all affected fetuses. Although the molecular roles of Gle1 in nuclear mRNA export and translation have been documented, no animal models for this disease have been reported. To elucidate the function of Gle1 in vertebrate development, we used the zebrafish (Danio rerio) model system. gle1 mRNA is maternally deposited and widely expressed. Altering Gle1 using an insertional mutant or antisense morpholinos results in multiple defects, including immobility, small eyes, diminished pharyngeal arches, curved body axis, edema, underdeveloped intestine and cell death in the central nervous system. These phenotypes parallel those observed in LCCS1 human fetuses. Gle1 depletion also results in reduction of motoneurons and aberrant arborization of motor axons. Unexpectedly, the motoneuron deficiency results from apoptosis of neural precursors, not of differentiated motoneurons. Mosaic analyses further indicate that Gle1 activity is required extrinsically in the environment for normal motor axon arborization. Importantly, the zebrafish phenotypes caused by Gle1 deficiency are only rescued by expressing wild-type human GLE1 and not by the disease-linked Fin(Major) mutant form of GLE1. Together, our studies provide the first functional characterization of Gle1 in vertebrate development and reveal its essential role in actively dividing cells. We propose that defective GLE1 function in human LCCS1 results in both neurogenic and non-neurogenic defects linked to the apoptosis of proliferative organ precursors.

  18. Trial-by-Trial Modulation of Associative Memory Formation by Reward Prediction Error and Reward Anticipation as Revealed by a Biologically Plausible Computational Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aberg, Kristoffer C; Müller, Julia; Schwartz, Sophie

    2017-01-01

    Anticipation and delivery of rewards improves memory formation, but little effort has been made to disentangle their respective contributions to memory enhancement. Moreover, it has been suggested that the effects of reward on memory are mediated by dopaminergic influences on hippocampal plasticity. Yet, evidence linking memory improvements to actual reward computations reflected in the activity of the dopaminergic system, i.e., prediction errors and expected values, is scarce and inconclusive. For example, different previous studies reported that the magnitude of prediction errors during a reinforcement learning task was a positive, negative, or non-significant predictor of successfully encoding simultaneously presented images. Individual sensitivities to reward and punishment have been found to influence the activation of the dopaminergic reward system and could therefore help explain these seemingly discrepant results. Here, we used a novel associative memory task combined with computational modeling and showed independent effects of reward-delivery and reward-anticipation on memory. Strikingly, the computational approach revealed positive influences from both reward delivery, as mediated by prediction error magnitude, and reward anticipation, as mediated by magnitude of expected value, even in the absence of behavioral effects when analyzed using standard methods, i.e., by collapsing memory performance across trials within conditions. We additionally measured trait estimates of reward and punishment sensitivity and found that individuals with increased reward (vs. punishment) sensitivity had better memory for associations encoded during positive (vs. negative) prediction errors when tested after 20 min, but a negative trend when tested after 24 h. In conclusion, modeling trial-by-trial fluctuations in the magnitude of reward, as we did here for prediction errors and expected value computations, provides a comprehensive and biologically plausible description of

  19. Molecular simulations and Markov state modeling reveal the structural diversity and dynamics of a theophylline-binding RNA aptamer in its unbound state.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Becka M Warfield

    Full Text Available RNA aptamers are oligonucleotides that bind with high specificity and affinity to target ligands. In the absence of bound ligand, secondary structures of RNA aptamers are generally stable, but single-stranded and loop regions, including ligand binding sites, lack defined structures and exist as ensembles of conformations. For example, the well-characterized theophylline-binding aptamer forms a highly stable binding site when bound to theophylline, but the binding site is unstable and disordered when theophylline is absent. Experimental methods have not revealed at atomic resolution the conformations that the theophylline aptamer explores in its unbound state. Consequently, in the present study we applied 21 microseconds of molecular dynamics simulations to structurally characterize the ensemble of conformations that the aptamer adopts in the absence of theophylline. Moreover, we apply Markov state modeling to predict the kinetics of transitions between unbound conformational states. Our simulation results agree with experimental observations that the theophylline binding site is found in many distinct binding-incompetent states and show that these states lack a binding pocket that can accommodate theophylline. The binding-incompetent states interconvert with binding-competent states through structural rearrangement of the binding site on the nanosecond to microsecond timescale. Moreover, we have simulated the complete theophylline binding pathway. Our binding simulations supplement prior experimental observations of slow theophylline binding kinetics by showing that the binding site must undergo a large conformational rearrangement after the aptamer and theophylline form an initial complex, most notably, a major rearrangement of the C27 base from a buried to solvent-exposed orientation. Theophylline appears to bind by a combination of conformational selection and induced fit mechanisms. Finally, our modeling indicates that when Mg2+ ions are

  20. preliminary multidomain modelling and simulation study

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    user

    PRELIMINARY MULTIDOMAIN MODELLING AND SIMULATION STUDY OF A. HORIZONTAL AXIS WIND TURBINE (HAWT) TOWER VIBRATION. I. lliyasu1, I. Iliyasu2, I. K. Tanimu3 and D. O Obada4. 1,4 DEPARTMENT OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERING, AHMADU BELLO UNIVERSITY, ZARIA, KADUNA STATE. NIGERIA.

  1. Parametric study for horizontal steam generator modelling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ovtcharova, I. [Energoproekt, Sofia (Bulgaria)

    1995-12-31

    In the presentation some of the calculated results of horizontal steam generator PGV - 440 modelling with RELAP5/Mod3 are described. Two nodalization schemes have been used with different components in the steam dome. A study of parameters variation on the steam generator work and calculated results is made in cases with separator and branch.

  2. Priming can affect naming colours using the study-test procedure. Revealing the role of task conflict.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Dinkar

    2016-11-14

    The Stroop paradigm has been widely used to study attention whilst its use to explore implicit memory have been mixed. Using the non-colour word Stroop task we tested contrasting predictions from the proactive-control/task-conflict model (Kalanthroff, Avnit, Henik, Davelaar & Usher, 2015) that implicate response conflict and task conflict for the priming effects. Using the study-test procedure 60 native English speakers were tested to determine whether priming effects from words that had previously been studied would cause interference when presented in a colour naming task. The results replicate a finding by MacLeod (1996) who showed no differences between the response latencies to studied and unstudied words. However, this pattern was predominately in the first half of the study where it was also found that both studied and unstudied words in a mixed block were slower to respond to than a block of pure unstudied words. The second half of the study showed stronger priming interference effects as well as a sequential modulation effect in which studied words slowed down the responses of studied words on the next trial. We discuss the role of proactive and reactive control processes and conclude that task conflict best explains the pattern of priming effects reported. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  3. A structure-based model of energy transfer reveals the principles of light harvesting in photosystem II supercomplexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, Doran I G; Amarnath, Kapil; Fleming, Graham R

    2013-06-19

    Photosystem II (PSII) initiates photosynthesis in plants through the absorption of light and subsequent conversion of excitation energy to chemical energy via charge separation. The pigment binding proteins associated with PSII assemble in the grana membrane into PSII supercomplexes and surrounding light harvesting complex II trimers. To understand the high efficiency of light harvesting in PSII requires quantitative insight into energy transfer and charge separation in PSII supercomplexes. We have constructed the first structure-based model of energy transfer in PSII supercomplexes. This model shows that the kinetics of light harvesting cannot be simplified to a single rate limiting step. Instead, substantial contributions arise from both excitation diffusion through the antenna pigments and transfer from the antenna to the reaction center (RC), where charge separation occurs. Because of the lack of a rate-limiting step, fitting kinetic models to fluorescence lifetime data cannot be used to derive mechanistic insight on light harvesting in PSII. This model will clarify the interpretation of chlorophyll fluorescence data from PSII supercomplexes, grana membranes, and leaves.

  4. A Stochastic Model of the Yeast Cell Cycle Reveals Roles for Feedback Regulation in Limiting Cellular Variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ball, David A.

    2016-01-01

    The cell division cycle of eukaryotes is governed by a complex network of cyclin-dependent protein kinases (CDKs) and auxiliary proteins that govern CDK activities. The control system must function reliably in the context of molecular noise that is inevitable in tiny yeast cells, because mistakes in sequencing cell cycle events are detrimental or fatal to the cell or its progeny. To assess the effects of noise on cell cycle progression requires not only extensive, quantitative, experimental measurements of cellular heterogeneity but also comprehensive, accurate, mathematical models of stochastic fluctuations in the CDK control system. In this paper we provide a stochastic model of the budding yeast cell cycle that accurately accounts for the variable phenotypes of wild-type cells and more than 20 mutant yeast strains simulated in different growth conditions. We specifically tested the role of feedback regulations mediated by G1- and SG2M-phase cyclins to minimize the noise in cell cycle progression. Details of the model are informed and tested by quantitative measurements (by fluorescence in situ hybridization) of the joint distributions of mRNA populations in yeast cells. We use the model to predict the phenotypes of ~30 mutant yeast strains that have not yet been characterized experimentally. PMID:27935947

  5. Mathematical model reveals role of nucleotide signaling in airway surface liquid homeostasis and its dysregulation in cystic fibrosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandefur, Conner I; Boucher, Richard C; Elston, Timothy C

    2017-08-29

    Mucociliary clearance is composed of three components (i.e., mucin secretion, airway surface hydration, and ciliary-activity) which function coordinately to clear inhaled microbes and other foreign particles from airway surfaces. Airway surface hydration is maintained by water fluxes driven predominantly by active chloride and sodium ion transport. The ion channels that mediate electrogenic ion transport are regulated by extracellular purinergic signals that signal through G protein-coupled receptors. These purinoreceptors and the signaling pathways they activate have been identified as possible therapeutic targets for treating lung disease. A systems-level description of airway surface liquid (ASL) homeostasis could accelerate development of such therapies. Accordingly, we developed a mathematical model to describe the dynamic coupling of ion and water transport to extracellular purinergic signaling. We trained our model from steady-state and time-dependent experimental measurements made using normal and cystic fibrosis (CF) cultured human airway epithelium. To reproduce CF conditions, reduced chloride secretion, increased potassium secretion, and increased sodium absorption were required. The model accurately predicted ASL height under basal normal and CF conditions and the collapse of surface hydration due to the accelerated nucleotide metabolism associated with CF exacerbations. Finally, the model predicted a therapeutic strategy to deliver nucleotide receptor agonists to effectively rehydrate the ASL of CF airways.

  6. Key role of local regulation in chemosensing revealed by a new molecular interaction-based modeling method.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Meier-Schellersheim

    2006-07-01

    Full Text Available The signaling network underlying eukaryotic chemosensing is a complex combination of receptor-mediated transmembrane signals, lipid modifications, protein translocations, and differential activation/deactivation of membrane-bound and cytosolic components. As such, it provides particularly interesting challenges for a combined computational and experimental analysis. We developed a novel detailed molecular signaling model that, when used to simulate the response to the attractant cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP, made nontrivial predictions about Dictyostelium chemosensing. These predictions, including the unexpected existence of spatially asymmetrical, multiphasic, cyclic adenosine monophosphate-induced PTEN translocation and phosphatidylinositol-(3,4,5P3 generation, were experimentally verified by quantitative single-cell microscopy leading us to propose significant modifications to the current standard model for chemoattractant-induced biochemical polarization in this organism. Key to this successful modeling effort was the use of "Simmune," a new software package that supports the facile development and testing of detailed computational representations of cellular behavior. An intuitive interface allows user definition of complex signaling networks based on the definition of specific molecular binding site interactions and the subcellular localization of molecules. It automatically translates such inputs into spatially resolved simulations and dynamic graphical representations of the resulting signaling network that can be explored in a manner that closely parallels wet lab experimental procedures. These features of Simmune were critical to the model development and analysis presented here and are likely to be useful in the computational investigation of many aspects of cell biology.

  7. Boolean modelling reveals new regulatory connections between transcription factors orchestrating the development of the ventral spinal cord.

    KAUST Repository

    Lovrics, Anna

    2014-11-14

    We have assembled a network of cell-fate determining transcription factors that play a key role in the specification of the ventral neuronal subtypes of the spinal cord on the basis of published transcriptional interactions. Asynchronous Boolean modelling of the network was used to compare simulation results with reported experimental observations. Such comparison highlighted the need to include additional regulatory connections in order to obtain the fixed point attractors of the model associated with the five known progenitor cell types located in the ventral spinal cord. The revised gene regulatory network reproduced previously observed cell state switches between progenitor cells observed in knock-out animal models or in experiments where the transcription factors were overexpressed. Furthermore the network predicted the inhibition of Irx3 by Nkx2.2 and this prediction was tested experimentally. Our results provide evidence for the existence of an as yet undescribed inhibitory connection which could potentially have significance beyond the ventral spinal cord. The work presented in this paper demonstrates the strength of Boolean modelling for identifying gene regulatory networks.

  8. A systems biology model of the regulatory network in Populus leaves reveals interacting regulators and conserved regulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hvidsten Torgeir R

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Green plant leaves have always fascinated biologists as hosts for photosynthesis and providers of basic energy to many food webs. Today, comprehensive databases of gene expression data enable us to apply increasingly more advanced computational methods for reverse-engineering the regulatory network of leaves, and to begin to understand the gene interactions underlying complex emergent properties related to stress-response and development. These new systems biology methods are now also being applied to organisms such as Populus, a woody perennial tree, in order to understand the specific characteristics of these species. Results We present a systems biology model of the regulatory network of Populus leaves. The network is reverse-engineered from promoter information and expression profiles of leaf-specific genes measured over a large set of conditions related to stress and developmental. The network model incorporates interactions between regulators, such as synergistic and competitive relationships, by evaluating increasingly more complex regulatory mechanisms, and is therefore able to identify new regulators of leaf development not found by traditional genomics methods based on pair-wise expression similarity. The approach is shown to explain available gene function information and to provide robust prediction of expression levels in new data. We also use the predictive capability of the model to identify condition-specific regulation as well as conserved regulation between Populus and Arabidopsis. Conclusions We outline a computationally inferred model of the regulatory network of Populus leaves, and show how treating genes as interacting, rather than individual, entities identifies new regulators compared to traditional genomics analysis. Although systems biology models should be used with care considering the complexity of regulatory programs and the limitations of current genomics data, methods describing interactions

  9. Human and ecotoxicological impacts assessment from the Mexican oil industry in the Coatzacoalcos region, as revealed by the USEtox model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales-Mora, M A; Rodríguez-Pérez, B; Martínez-Delgadillo, S A; Rosa-Domínguez, E; Nolasco-Hipólito, C

    2014-01-01

    Human and ecotoxicological impacts were analyzed in the lower basin of the Coatzacoalcos River (Veracruz, State in Mexico). High pollution levels of contaminants from the oil industry have been reported in natural streams and the Coatzacoalcos River and in their sediments. USEtox model was employed to evaluate environmental fate, exposure, and effect of nine organic compounds (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and one of which was in the group of polychlorinated biphenyls), a heavy metal (lead), and the effect of the industrial wastewater emitted into the river, on the Coatzacoalcos region. Most of these compounds are highly toxic; they bioaccumulate in human and animal tissue, mainly in the fatty tissues and can damage different organs and systemic targets such as the liver, kidney, hormonal system, nervous system, etc., of both humans and wildlife. The model estimates that 96% (3,247 kg/day) of organic compounds is transferred from the water into air, whereas only 4% (151 kg/day) remains in the water. In addition, it predicts that humans are mainly exposed to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) congeners (28 and 153) by eating contaminated fish, due to PCBs accumulating in the fish fat tissue. The number of cases of cancer and noncancer (1 in 862 habitants per additional kilogram) is expected to have an increment due to the higher PCBs exposure of human population. Genetic damages in fishes, earthworms, and toads have been observed and related to higher exposure to organic compounds. The relationship between the field reported data and those one predicted by the USEtox model have been confirmed empirically by using the nonparametric correlation analysis (Spearman's rho). Based on the USEtox model, the environmental stress in the Coatzacoalcos industrial zone is between 2 and 6 orders of magnitude over geometric mean of acute aquatic EC₅₀s. We think that USEtox model can be used to expand the number of substances that have the current water quality guidelines to

  10. Systematic Synthesis and Binding Study of HIV V3 Glycopeptides Reveal the Fine Epitopes of Several Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orwenyo, Jared; Cai, Hui; Giddens, John; Amin, Mohammed N; Toonstra, Christian; Wang, Lai-Xi

    2017-06-16

    A class of new glycan-reactive broadly neutralizing antibodies represented by PGT121, 10-1074, and PGT128 has recently been discovered that targets specific N-glycans and the peptide region around the V3 domain. However, the glycan specificity and fine epitopes of these bNAbs remain to be further defined. We report here a systematic chemoenzymatic synthesis of homogeneous V3 glycopeptides derived from the HIV-1 JR-FL strain carrying defined N-glycans at N332, N301, and N295 sites. Antibody binding studies revealed that both the nature and site of glycosylation in the context of the V3 domain were critical for high-affinity binding. It was found that antibody PGT128 exhibited specificity for high-mannose N-glycan with glycosylation site promiscuity, PGT121 showed binding specificity for glycopeptide carrying a sialylated N-glycan at N301 site, and 10-1074 was specific for glycopeptide carrying a high-mannose N-glycan at N332 site. The synthesis and binding studies permit a detailed assessment of the glycan specificity and the requirement of peptide in the context of antibody-antigen recognition. The identified glycopeptides can be used as potential templates for HIV vaccine design.

  11. A genome-wide association study on androstenone levels in pigs reveals a cluster of candidate genes on chromosome 6

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Groenen Martien AM

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In many countries, male piglets are castrated shortly after birth because a proportion of un-castrated male pigs produce meat with an unpleasant flavour and odour. Main compounds of boar taint are androstenone and skatole. The aim of this high-density genome-wide association study was to identify single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs associated with androstenone levels in a commercial sire line of pigs. The identification of major genetic effects causing boar taint would accelerate the reduction of boar taint through breeding to finally eliminate the need for castration. Results The Illumina Porcine 60K+SNP Beadchip was genotyped on 987 pigs divergent for androstenone concentration from a commercial Duroc-based sire line. The association analysis with 47,897 SNPs revealed that androstenone levels in fat tissue were significantly affected by 37 SNPs on pig chromosomes SSC1 and SSC6. Among them, the 5 most significant SNPs explained together 13.7% of the genetic variance in androstenone. On SSC6, a larger region of 10 Mb was shown to be associated with androstenone covering several candidate genes potentially involved in the synthesis and metabolism of androgens. Besides known candidate genes, such as cytochrome P450 A19 (CYP2A19, sulfotransferases SULT2A1, and SULT2B1, also new members of the cytochrome P450 CYP2 gene subfamilies and of the hydroxysteroid-dehydrogenases (HSD17B14 were found. In addition, the gene encoding the ß-chain of the luteinizing hormone (LHB which induces steroid synthesis in the Leydig cells of the testis at onset of puberty maps to this area on SSC6. Interestingly, the gene encoding the α-chain of LH is also located in one of the highly significant areas on SSC1. Conclusions This study reveals several areas of the genome at high resolution responsible for variation of androstenone levels in intact boars. Major genetic factors on SSC1 and SSC6 showing moderate to large effects on androstenone

  12. Influences of climate change on California and Nevada regions revealed by a high-resolution dynamical downscaling study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Lin-Lin; Chen, Shu-Hua; Cayan, Dan; Lin, Mei-Ying; Hart, Quinn; Zhang, Ming-Hua; Liu, Yubao; Wang, Jianzhong

    2011-11-01

    In this study, the influence of climate change to California and Nevada regions was investigated through high-resolution (4-km grid spacing) dynamical downscaling using the WRF (Weather Research & Forecasting) model. The dynamical downscaling was performed to both the GFS (Global forecast model) reanalysis (called GFS-WRF runs) from 2000-2006 and PCM (Parallel Climate Model) simulations (called PCM-WRF runs) from 1997-2006 and 2047-2056. The downscaling results were first validated by comparing current model outputs with the observational analysis PRISM (Parameter-elevation Regressions on Independent Slopes Model) dataset. In general, the dominant features from GFS-WRF runs and PCM-WRF runs were consistent with each other, as well as with PRISM results. The influences of climate change on the California and Nevada regions can be inferred from the model future runs. The averaged temperature showed a positive trend in the future, as in other studies. The temperature increases by around 1-2°C under the assumption of business as usual over 50 years. This leads to an upward shifting of the freezing level (the contour line of 0°C temperature) and more rain instead of snow in winter (December, January, and February). More hot days (>32.2°C or 90°F) and extreme hot days (>37.8°C or 100°F) are predicted in the Sacramento Valley and the southern parts of California and Nevada during summer (June, July, and August). More precipitation is predicted in northern California but not in southern California. Rainfall frequency slightly increases in the coast regions, but not in the inland area. No obvious trend of the surface wind was indicated. The probability distribution functions (PDF) of daily temperature, wind and precipitation for California and Nevada showed no significant change in shape in either winter or summer. The spatial distributions of precipitation frequency from GFS-WRF and PCM-WRF were highly correlated (r = 0.83). However, overall positive shifts were seen

  13. Studying and Modeling Vibration Transducers and Accelerometers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katalin Ágoston

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents types and operating mode of vibration sensors. Piezoelectric sensing elements are often used in accelerometers. It will be investigate the structure and transfer function of the seismic mass type sensing element. The article presents how the piezoelectric sensing element works and how can be modeled with an electronic circuit. The transfer functions of the electronic circuit models are studied in Matlab and the results are presented. It will be presented the influence of the seismic mass on the accelerometer’s working frequency domain.

  14. Experimental and modelling studies of infiltration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Giudici, M.

    2004-01-01

    This presentation describes a study of infiltration in the unsaturated soil with the objective of estimating the recharge to a phreatic aquifer. The study area is at the border of the city of Milan (Northern Italy), which draws water for both domestic and industrial purposes from ground water resources located beneath the urban area. The rate of water pumping from the aquifer system has been varying during the XX century, depending upon the number of inhabitants and the development of industrial activities. This caused variations with time of the depth of the water table below the ground surface and in turn some emergencies: the two most prominent episodes correspond to the middle '70s, when the water table in the city centre was about 30 m below the undisturbed natural conditions, and to the last decade, when the water table has raised at a rate of approximately 1 m/year and caused infiltrations in deep constructions (garages and building foundations, the underground railways, etc.). We have developed four ground water flow models at different scales, which share some characteristics: they are based on quasi-3D approximation (horizontal flow in the aquifers and vertical flow in the aquitards), conservative finite-differences schemes for regular grid with square cells in the horizontal plane and are implemented with proprietary computer codes. Among the problems that were studied for the development of these models, I recall some numerical problems, related to the behaviour of the phreatic aquifer under conditions of strong exploitation. Model calibration and validation for ModMil has been performed with a two-stage process, i.e., using some of the available data for model calibration and the remaining data for model validation. The application of geophysical exploration techniques, in particular seismic and geo-electrical prospecting, has been very useful to complete the data and information on the hydro-geological structure obtained from stratigraphic logs

  15. Musical groove is correlated with properties of the audio signal as revealed by computational modelling, depending on musical style

    OpenAIRE

    Madison, Guy; Gouyon, Fabien; Ullén, Fredrik

    2009-01-01

    With groove we mean the subjective experience of wanting to move rhythmically when listening to music. Previous research has indicated that physical properties of the sound signal contribute to groove - as opposed to mere association due to previous exposure, for example. Here, a number of quantitative descriptors of rhythmic and temporal properties were derived from the audio signal by means of computational modelling methods. The music examples were 100 samples from 5 distinct music styles,...

  16. Multistage Core Formation in Planetesimals Revealed by Numerical Modeling and Hf-W Chronometry of Iron Meteorites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neumann, W.; Kruijer, T. S.; Breuer, D.; Kleine, T.

    2018-02-01

    Iron meteorites provide some of the most direct insights into the processes and timescales of core formation in planetesimals. Of these, group IVB irons stand out by having one of the youngest 182Hf-182W model ages for metal segregation (2.9 ± 0.6 Ma after solar system formation), as well as the lowest bulk sulfur content and hence highest liquidus temperature. Here, using a new model for the internal evolution of the IVB parent body, we show that a single stage of metal-silicate separation cannot account for the complete melting of pure Fe metal at the relatively late time given by the Hf-W model age. Instead, a complex metal-silicate separation scenario is required that includes migration of partial silicate melts, formation of a shallow magma ocean, and core formation in two distinct stages of metal segregation. In the first stage, a protocore formed at ≈1.5 Ma via settling of metal particles in a mantle magma ocean, followed by metal segregation from a shallow magma ocean at ≈5.4 Ma. As these stages of metal segregation occurred at different times, the two metal fractions had different 182W compositions. Consequently, the final 182W composition of the IVB core does not correspond to a single differentiation event, but represents the average composition of early- and late-segregated core fractions. Our best fit model indicates an ≈100 km radius for the IVB parent body and provides an accretion age of ≈0.1-0.5 Ma after solar system formation. The computed solidification time is, furthermore, consistent with the Re-Os age for crystallization of the IVB core.

  17. Fibre recruitment and shape changes of knee ligaments during motion: as revealed by a computer graphics-based model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, T W; O'Connor, J J

    1996-01-01

    A computer graphics-based model of the knee ligaments in the sagittal plane was developed for the simulation and visualization of the shape changes and fibre recruitment process of the ligaments during motion under unloaded and loaded conditions. The cruciate and collateral ligaments were modelled as ordered arrays of fibres which link attachment areas on the tibia and femur. Fibres slacken and tighten as the ligament attachment areas on the bones rotate and translate relative to each other. A four-bar linkage, composed of the femur, tibia and selected isometric fibres of the two cruciates, was used to determine the motion of the femur relative to the tibia during passive (unloaded) movement. Fibres were assumed to slacken in a Euler buckling mode when the distances between their attachments are less than chosen reference lengths. The ligament shape changes and buckling patterns are demonstrated with computer graphics. When the tibia is translated anteriorly or posteriorly relative to the femur by muscle forces and external loads, some ligament fibres tighten and are recruited progressively to transmit increasing shear forces. The shape changes and fibre recruitment patterns predicted by the model compare well qualitatively with experimental results reported in the literature. The computer graphics approach provides insight into the micro behaviour of the knee ligaments. It may help to explain ligament injury mechanisms and provide useful information to guide the design of ligament replacements.

  18. Ground deformation source model at Kuchinoerabu-jima volcano during 2006-2014 as revealed by campaign GPS observation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hotta, Kohei; Iguchi, Masato

    2017-12-01

    We analyzed campaign Global Positioning System observation data in Kuchinoerabu-jima during 2006-2014. Most benchmarks located around Shin-dake crater showed crater-centered radial horizontal displacements. Horizontal displacements at western rim of the Shin-dake crater were tended to be larger compared to those at eastern rim. In addition, benchmark KUC14 which locates near the cliff at Furu-dake showed westward horizontal displacement rather than crater-centered radial (southward) one. Meanwhile, small displacements were detected at the benchmarks located at the foot of Kuchinoerabu-jima. We modeled the observed displacements applying a finite element method. We set entire FE domain as 100 × 100 × 50 km3. We set top of the domain as a free surface, and sides and bottom to be fixed boundaries. Topography was introduced in the area within Kuchinoerabu-jima using digital elevation model data provided by Kagoshima prefecture and elevation information from Google earth, and elevation of the outside area was assumed to be sea level. We assumed a stratified structure based on a one-dimensional P-wave velocity structure. We applied a vertical spheroid source model and searched optimal values of horizontal location, depth, equatorial and polar radiuses, and internal pressure change of the source using the forward modeling method. A spherical source with a radius of 50 m was obtained beneath the Shin-dake crater at a depth of 400 m above sea level. The internal pressure increase of 361 MPa yields its volume increase of 31,700 m3. Taking effects of topography and heterogeneity of ground into account allowed reproduction of overall deformation in Kuchinoerabu-jima. The location of deformation source coincides with hypocenters of shallow volcano-tectonic (VT) earthquakes and the aquifer estimated from a two-dimensional resistivity model by audio-frequency magnetotellurics method. The obtained deformation source may be corresponding to the pressurized aquifer, and shallow VT

  19. New analysis of a rat feeding study with a genetically modified maize reveals signs of hepatorenal toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Séralini, Gilles-Eric; Cellier, Dominique; de Vendomois, Joël Spiroux

    2007-05-01

    Health risk assessment of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) cultivated for food or feed is under debate throughout the world, and very little data have been published on mid- or long-term toxicological studies with mammals. One of these studies performed under the responsibility of Monsanto Company with a transgenic corn MON863 has been subjected to questions from regulatory reviewers in Europe, where it was finally approved in 2005. This necessitated a new assessment of kidney pathological findings, and the results remained controversial. An Appeal Court action in Germany (Münster) allowed public access in June 2005 to all the crude data from this 90-day rat-feeding study. We independently re-analyzed these data. Appropriate statistics were added, such as a multivariate analysis of the growth curves, and for biochemical parameters comparisons between GMO-treated rats and the controls fed with an equivalent normal diet, and separately with six reference diets with different compositions. We observed that after the consumption of MON863, rats showed slight but dose-related significant variations in growth for both sexes, resulting in 3.3% decrease in weight for males and 3.7% increase for females. Chemistry measurements reveal signs of hepatorenal toxicity, marked also by differential sensitivities in males and females. Triglycerides increased by 24-40% in females (either at week 14, dose 11% or at week 5, dose 33%, respectively); urine phosphorus and sodium excretions diminished in males by 31-35% (week 14, dose 33%) for the most important results significantly linked to the treatment in comparison to seven diets tested. Longer experiments are essential in order to indicate the real nature and extent of the possible pathology; with the present data it cannot be concluded that GM corn MON863 is a safe product.

  20. Analytical study of anisotropic compact star models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivanov, B. V.

    2017-11-01

    A simple classification is given of the anisotropic relativistic star models, resembling the one of charged isotropic solutions. On the ground of this database, and taking into account the conditions for physically realistic star models, a method is proposed for generating all such solutions. It is based on the energy density and the radial pressure as seeding functions. Numerous relations between the realistic conditions are found and the need for a graphic proof is reduced just to one pair of inequalities. This general formalism is illustrated with an example of a class of solutions with linear equation of state and simple energy density. It is found that the solutions depend on three free constants and concrete examples are given. Some other popular models are studied with the same method.

  1. Analytical study of anisotropic compact star models

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ivanov, B.V. [Bulgarian Academy of Science, Institute for Nuclear Research and Nuclear Energy, Sofia (Bulgaria)

    2017-11-15

    A simple classification is given of the anisotropic relativistic star models, resembling the one of charged isotropic solutions. On the ground of this database, and taking into account the conditions for physically realistic star models, a method is proposed for generating all such solutions. It is based on the energy density and the radial pressure as seeding functions. Numerous relations between the realistic conditions are found and the need for a graphic proof is reduced just to one pair of inequalities. This general formalism is illustrated with an example of a class of solutions with linear equation of state and simple energy density. It is found that the solutions depend on three free constants and concrete examples are given. Some other popular models are studied with the same method. (orig.)

  2. Genetic analysis of Apuleia leiocarpa as revealed by random amplified polymorphic DNA markers: prospects for population genetic studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lencina, K H; Konzen, E R; Tsai, S M; Bisognin, D A

    2016-12-19

    Apuleia leiocarpa (Vogel) J.F. MacBride is a hardwood species native to South America, which is at serious risk of extinction. Therefore, it is of prime importance to examine the genetic diversity of this species, information required for developing conservation, sustainable management, and breeding strategies. Although scarcely used in recent years, random amplified polymorphic DNA markers are useful resources for the analysis of genetic diversity and structure of tree species. This study represents the first genetic analysis based on DNA markers in A. leiocarpa that aimed to investigate the levels of polymorphism and to select markers for the precise characterization of its genetic structure. We adapted the original DNA extraction protocol based on cetyltrimethyl ammonium bromide, and describe a simple procedure that can be used to obtain high-quality samples from leaf tissues of this tree. Eighteen primers were selected, revealing 92 bands, from which 75 were polymorphic and 61 were sufficient to represent the overall genetic structure of the population without compromising the precision of the analysis. Some fragments were conserved among individuals, which can be sequenced and used to analyze nucleotide diversity parameters through a wider set of A. leiocarpa individuals and populations. The individuals were separated into 11 distinct groups with variable levels of genetic diversity, which is important for selecting desirable genotypes and for the development of a conservation and sustainable management program. Our results are of prime importance for further investigations concerning the genetic characterization of this important, but vulnerable species.

  3. Barcoding Turkish Culex mosquitoes to facilitate arbovirus vector incrimination studies reveals hidden diversity and new potential vectors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunay, Filiz; Alten, Bulent; Simsek, Fatih; Aldemir, Adnan; Linton, Yvonne-Marie

    2015-03-01

    As a precursor to planned arboviral vector incrimination studies, an integrated systematics approach was adopted using morphology and DNA barcoding to examine the Culex fauna present in Turkey. The mitochondrial COI gene (658bp) were sequenced from 185 specimens collected across 11 Turkish provinces, as well as from colony material. Although by morphology only 9 species were recognised, DNA barcoding recovered 13 distinct species including: Cx. (Barraudius) modestus, Cx. (Culex) laticinctus, Cx. (Cux.) mimeticus, Cx. (Cux.) perexiguus, Cx. (Cux.) pipiens, Cx. (Cux.) pipiens form molestus, Cx. (Cux.) quinquefasciatus, Cx. (Cux.) theileri, Cx. (Cux.) torrentium, Cx. (Cux.) tritaeniorhynchus and Cx. (Maillotia) hortensis. The taxon formerly identified as Cx. (Neoculex) territans was shown to comprise two distinct species, neither of which correspond to Cx. territans s.s. These include Cx. (Neo.) impudicus and another uncertain species, which may be Cx. (Neo.) europaeus or Cx. (Neo.) martinii (herein=Cx. (Neo.) sp. 1). Detailed examination of the Pipiens Group revealed Cx. pipiens, Cx. pipiens f. molestus and the widespread presence of the highly efficient West Nile virus vector Cx. quinquefasciatus for the first time. Four new country records are reported, increasing the Culex of Turkey to 15 recognised species and Cx. pipiens f. molestus. A new taxonomic checklist is provided, annotated with respective vector competencies for transmission of arboviruses. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Genetic and genomic diversity studies of Acacia symbionts in Senegal reveal new species of Mesorhizobium with a putative geographical pattern.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatou Diouf

    Full Text Available Acacia senegal (L Willd. and Acacia seyal Del. are highly nitrogen-fixing and moderately salt tolerant species. In this study we focused on the genetic and genomic diversity of Acacia mesorhizobia symbionts from diverse origins in Senegal and investigated possible correlations between the genetic diversity of the strains, their soil of origin, and their tolerance to salinity. We first performed a multi-locus sequence analysis on five markers gene fragments on a collection of 47 mesorhizobia strains of A. senegal and A. seyal from 8 localities. Most of the strains (60% clustered with the M. plurifarium type strain ORS 1032T, while the others form four new clades (MSP1 to MSP4. We sequenced and assembled seven draft genomes: four in the M. plurifarium clade (ORS3356, ORS3365, STM8773 and ORS1032T, one in MSP1 (STM8789, MSP2 (ORS3359 and MSP3 (ORS3324. The average nucleotide identities between these genomes together with the MLSA analysis reveal three new species of Mesorhizobium. A great variability of salt tolerance was found among the strains with a lack of correlation between the genetic diversity of mesorhizobia, their salt tolerance and the soils samples characteristics. A putative geographical pattern of A. senegal symbionts between the dryland north part and the center of Senegal was found, reflecting adaptations to specific local conditions such as the water regime. However, the presence of salt does not seem to be an important structuring factor of Mesorhizobium species.

  5. Genetic and genomic diversity studies of Acacia symbionts in Senegal reveal new species of Mesorhizobium with a putative geographical pattern.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diouf, Fatou; Diouf, Diegane; Klonowska, Agnieszka; Le Queré, Antoine; Bakhoum, Niokhor; Fall, Dioumacor; Neyra, Marc; Parrinello, Hugues; Diouf, Mayecor; Ndoye, Ibrahima; Moulin, Lionel

    2015-01-01

    Acacia senegal (L) Willd. and Acacia seyal Del. are highly nitrogen-fixing and moderately salt tolerant species. In this study we focused on the genetic and genomic diversity of Acacia mesorhizobia symbionts from diverse origins in Senegal and investigated possible correlations between the genetic diversity of the strains, their soil of origin, and their tolerance to salinity. We first performed a multi-locus sequence analysis on five markers gene fragments on a collection of 47 mesorhizobia strains of A. senegal and A. seyal from 8 localities. Most of the strains (60%) clustered with the M. plurifarium type strain ORS 1032T, while the others form four new clades (MSP1 to MSP4). We sequenced and assembled seven draft genomes: four in the M. plurifarium clade (ORS3356, ORS3365, STM8773 and ORS1032T), one in MSP1 (STM8789), MSP2 (ORS3359) and MSP3 (ORS3324). The average nucleotide identities between these genomes together with the MLSA analysis reveal three new species of Mesorhizobium. A great variability of salt tolerance was found among the strains with a lack of correlation between the genetic diversity of mesorhizobia, their salt tolerance and the soils samples characteristics. A putative geographical pattern of A. senegal symbionts between the dryland north part and the center of Senegal was found, reflecting adaptations to specific local conditions such as the water regime. However, the presence of salt does not seem to be an important structuring factor of Mesorhizobium species.

  6. Study of fluid dynamics reveals direct communications between lymphatic vessels and venous blood vessels at lymph nodes of mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeda, Kazu; Mori, Shiro; Kodama, Tetsuya

    2017-06-01

    Cancer cells metastasize to lymph nodes, with distant metastasis resulting in poor prognosis. The role of lymph node metastasis (LNM) in the spread of cancer to distant organs remain incompletely characterized. The visualization of flow dynamics in the lymphatic and blood vessels of MXH10/Mo-lpr/lpr mice, which develop systemic swelling of lymph nodes up to 10mm in diameter, has revealed that lymph nodes have the potential to be a direct source of systemic metastasis. However, it is not known whether these fluid dynamics characteristics are universal phenomena present in other strains of laboratory mice. Here we show that the fluid dynamics observed in MXH10/Mo-lpr/lpr mice are the same as those observed in C57BL/6J, BALB/cAJcl and NOD/ShiJic-scidJcl mice. Furthermore, when fluorescent solution was injected into a tumor-bearing lymph node, the flow dynamics observed in the efferent lymphatic vessels and thoracoepigastric vein depended on the type of tumor cell. Our results indicate that fluid dynamics in the lymphatic and blood vessels of MXH10/Mo-lpr/lpr mice are generalized phenomena seen in conventional laboratory mice. We anticipate our results can facilitate studies of the progression of lymphatic metastasis to hematogenous metastasis via lymph nodes and the early diagnosis and treatment of LNM. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Integrated core-edge-divertor modeling studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stacey, W.M.

    2001-01-01

    An integrated calculation model for simulating the interaction of physics phenomena taking place in the plasma core, in the plasma edge and in the SOL and divertor of tokamaks has been developed and applied to study such interactions. The model synthesises a combination of numerical calculations (1) the power and particle balances for the core plasma, using empirical confinement scaling laws and taking into account radiation losses (2), the particle, momentum and power balances in the SOL and divertor, taking into account the effects of radiation and recycling neutrals, (3) the transport of feeling and recycling neutrals, explicitly representing divertor and pumping geometry, and (4) edge pedestal gradient scale lengths and widths, evaluation of theoretical predictions (5) confinement degradation due to thermal instabilities in the edge pedestals, (6) detachment and divertor MARFE onset, (7) core MARFE onsets leading to a H-L transition, and (8) radiative collapse leading to a disruption and evaluation of empirical fits (9) power thresholds for the L-H and H-L transitions and (10) the width of the edge pedestals. The various components of the calculation model are coupled and must be iterated to a self-consistent convergence. The model was developed over several years for the purpose of interpreting various edge phenomena observed in DIII-D experiments and thereby, to some extent, has been benchmarked against experiment. Because the model treats the interactions of various phenomena in the core, edge and divertor, yet is computationally efficient, it lends itself to the investigation of the effects of different choices of various edge plasma operating conditions on overall divertor and core plasma performance. Studies of the effect of feeling location and rate, divertor geometry, plasma shape, pumping and over 'edge parameters' on core plasma properties (line average density, confinement, density limit, etc.) have been performed for DIII-D model problems. A

  8. Modelling central metabolic fluxes by constraint-based optimization reveals metabolic reprogramming of developing Solanum lycopersicum (tomato) fruit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colombié, Sophie; Nazaret, Christine; Bénard, Camille; Biais, Benoît; Mengin, Virginie; Solé, Marion; Fouillen, Laëtitia; Dieuaide-Noubhani, Martine; Mazat, Jean-Pierre; Beauvoit, Bertrand; Gibon, Yves

    2015-01-01

    Modelling of metabolic networks is a powerful tool to analyse the behaviour of developing plant organs, including fruits. Guided by our current understanding of heterotrophic metabolism of plant cells, a medium-scale stoichiometric model, including the balance of co-factors and energy, was constructed in order to describe metabolic shifts that occur through the nine sequential stages of Solanum lycopersicum (tomato) fruit development. The measured concentrations of the main biomass components and the accumulated metabolites in the pericarp, determined at each stage, were fitted in order to calculate, by derivation, the corresponding external fluxes. They were used as constraints to solve the model by minimizing the internal fluxes. The distribution of the calculated fluxes of central metabolism were then analysed and compared with known metabolic behaviours. For instance, the partition of the main metabolic pathways (glycolysis, pentose phosphate pathway, etc.) was relevant throughout fruit development. We also predicted a valid import of carbon and nitrogen by the fruit, as well as a consistent CO2 release. Interestingly, the energetic balance indicates that excess ATP is dissipated just before the onset of ripening, supporting the concept of the climacteric crisis. Finally, the apparent contradiction between calculated fluxes with low values compared with measured enzyme capacities suggest a complex reprogramming of the metabolic machinery during fruit development. With a powerful set of experimental data and an accurate definition of the metabolic system, this work provides important insight into the metabolic and physiological requirements of the developing tomato fruits. © 2014 The Authors The Plant Journal published by Society for Experimental Biology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Modeling of soil nitrification responses to temperature reveals thermodynamic differences between ammonia-oxidizing activity of archaea and bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Anne E; Giguere, Andrew T; Zoebelein, Conor M; Myrold, David D; Bottomley, Peter J

    2017-04-01

    Soil nitrification potential (NP) activities of ammonia-oxidizing archaea and bacteria (AOA and AOB, respectively) were evaluated across a temperature gradient (4-42 °C) imposed upon eight soils from four different sites in Oregon and modeled with both the macromolecular rate theory and the square root growth models to quantify the thermodynamic responses. There were significant differences in response by the dominant AOA and AOB contributing to the NPs. The optimal temperatures (T opt ) for AOA- and AOB-supported NPs were significantly different (P12 °C greater than AOB. The change in heat capacity associated with the temperature dependence of nitrification (ΔC P ‡ ) was correlated with T opt across the eight soils, and the ΔC P ‡ of AOB activity was significantly more negative than that of AOA activity (Ptemperature (T min ) and different, albeit very similar, maximum temperature (T max ) values for AOB than for AOA activity. The results also suggested that there may be different forms of AOA AMO that are active over different temperature ranges with different T min , but no evidence of multiple T min values within the AOB. Fundamental differences in temperature-influenced properties of nitrification driven by AOA and AOB provides support for the idea that the biochemical processes associated with NH 3 oxidation in AOA and AOB differ thermodynamically from each other, and that also might account for the difficulties encountered in attempting to model the response of nitrification to temperature change in soil environments.

  10. Analysis of the serotonergic system in a mouse model of Rett syndrome reveals unusual upregulation of serotonin receptor 5b

    OpenAIRE

    Vogelgesang, S.; Niebert, S.; Renner, U.; Möbius, W.; Hülsmann, S.; Manzke, T.; Niebert, M.

    2017-01-01

    Mutations in the transcription factor methyl-CpG-binding-protein 2 (MeCP2) cause a delayed-onset neurodevelopmental disorder known as Rett syndrome (RTT). Although alteration in serotonin levels have been reported in RTT patients, the molecular mechanisms underlying these defects are not well understood. Therefore, we chose to investigate the serotonergic system in hippocampus and brainstem of male Mecp2=y knock-out mice in the B6.129P2(C)-Mecp2(tm1.1Bird) mouse model of RTT. ...

  11. Noninvasive monitoring of treatment response in a rabbit cyanide toxicity