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Sample records for plausible underlying biological

  1. Photoinduced catalytic synthesis of biologically important metabolites from formaldehyde and ammonia under plausible "prebiotic" conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delidovich, I. V.; Taran, O. P.; Simonov, A. N.; Matvienko, L. G.; Parmon, V. N.

    2011-08-01

    The article analyzes new and previously reported data on several catalytic and photochemical processes yielding biologically important molecules. UV-irradiation of formaldehyde aqueous solution yields acetaldehyde, glyoxal, glycolaldehyde and glyceraldehyde, which can serve as precursors of more complex biochemically relevant compounds. Photolysis of aqueous solution of acetaldehyde and ammonium nitrate results in formation of alanine and pyruvic acid. Dehydration of glyceraldehyde catalyzed by zeolite HZSM-5-17 yields pyruvaldehyde. Monosaccharides are formed in the course of the phosphate-catalyzed aldol condensation reactions of glycolaldehyde, glyceraldehyde and formaldehyde. The possibility of the direct synthesis of tetroses, keto- and aldo-pentoses from pure formaldehyde due to the combination of the photochemical production of glycolahyde and phosphate-catalyzed carbohydrate chain growth is demonstrated. Erythrulose and 3-pentulose are the main products of such combined synthesis with selectivity up to 10%. Biologically relevant aldotetroses, aldo- and ketopentoses are more resistant to the photochemical destruction owing to the stabilization in hemiacetal cyclic forms. They are formed as products of isomerization of erythrulose and 3-pentulose. The conjugation of the concerned reactions results in a plausible route to the formation of sugars, amino and organic acids from formaldehyde and ammonia under presumed 'prebiotic' conditions.

  2. Speech recognition employing biologically plausible receptive fields

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fereczkowski, Michal; Bothe, Hans-Heinrich

    2011-01-01

    spectro-temporal receptive fields to auditory spectrogram input, motivated by the auditory pathway of humans, and ii) the adaptation or learning algorithms involved are biologically inspired. This is in contrast to state-of-the-art combinations of Mel-frequency cepstral coefficients and Hidden Markov...

  3. On the biological plausibility of Wind Turbine Syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrison, Robert V

    2015-01-01

    An emerging environmental health issue relates to potential ill-effects of wind turbine noise. There have been numerous suggestions that the low-frequency acoustic components in wind turbine signals can cause symptoms associated with vestibular system disorders, namely vertigo, nausea, and nystagmus. This constellation of symptoms has been labeled as Wind Turbine Syndrome, and has been identified in case studies of individuals living close to wind farms. This review discusses whether it is biologically plausible for the turbine noise to stimulate the vestibular parts of the inner ear and, by extension, cause Wind Turbine Syndrome. We consider the sound levels that can activate the semicircular canals or otolith end organs in normal subjects, as well as in those with preexisting conditions known to lower vestibular threshold to sound stimulation.

  4. Epidemiologic studies of occupational pesticide exposure and cancer: regulatory risk assessments and biologic plausibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acquavella, John; Doe, John; Tomenson, John; Chester, Graham; Cowell, John; Bloemen, Louis

    2003-01-01

    Epidemiologic studies frequently show associations between self-reported use of specific pesticides and human cancers. These findings have engendered debate largely on methodologic grounds. However, biologic plausibility is a more fundamental issue that has received only superficial attention. The purpose of this commentary is to review briefly the toxicology and exposure data that are developed as part of the pesticide regulatory process and to discuss the applicability of this data to epidemiologic research. The authors also provide a generic example of how worker pesticide exposures might be estimated and compared to relevant toxicologic dose levels. This example provides guidance for better characterization of exposure and for consideration of biologic plausibility in epidemiologic studies of pesticides.

  5. A swarm intelligence framework for reconstructing gene networks: searching for biologically plausible architectures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kentzoglanakis, Kyriakos; Poole, Matthew

    2012-01-01

    In this paper, we investigate the problem of reverse engineering the topology of gene regulatory networks from temporal gene expression data. We adopt a computational intelligence approach comprising swarm intelligence techniques, namely particle swarm optimization (PSO) and ant colony optimization (ACO). In addition, the recurrent neural network (RNN) formalism is employed for modeling the dynamical behavior of gene regulatory systems. More specifically, ACO is used for searching the discrete space of network architectures and PSO for searching the corresponding continuous space of RNN model parameters. We propose a novel solution construction process in the context of ACO for generating biologically plausible candidate architectures. The objective is to concentrate the search effort into areas of the structure space that contain architectures which are feasible in terms of their topological resemblance to real-world networks. The proposed framework is initially applied to the reconstruction of a small artificial network that has previously been studied in the context of gene network reverse engineering. Subsequently, we consider an artificial data set with added noise for reconstructing a subnetwork of the genetic interaction network of S. cerevisiae (yeast). Finally, the framework is applied to a real-world data set for reverse engineering the SOS response system of the bacterium Escherichia coli. Results demonstrate the relative advantage of utilizing problem-specific knowledge regarding biologically plausible structural properties of gene networks over conducting a problem-agnostic search in the vast space of network architectures.

  6. Particulate air pollution and increased mortality: Biological plausibility for causal relationship

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Henderson, R.F.

    1995-01-01

    Recently, a number of epidemiological studies have concluded that ambient particulate exposure is associated with increased mortality and morbidity at PM concentrations well below those previously thought to affect human health. These studies have been conducted in several different geographical locations and have involved a range of populations. While the consistency of the findings and the presence of an apparent concentration response relationship provide a strong argument for causality, epidemiological studies can only conclude this based upon inference from statistical associations. The biological plausibility of a causal relationship between low concentrations of PM and daily mortality and morbidity rates is neither intuitively obvious nor expected based on past experimental studies on the toxicity of inhaled particles. Chronic toxicity from inhaled, poorly soluble particles has been observed based on the slow accumulation of large lung burdens of particles, not on small daily fluctuations in PM levels. Acute toxicity from inhaled particles is associated mainly with acidic particles and is observed at much higher concentrations than those observed in the epidemiology studies reporting an association between PM concentrations and morbidity/mortality. To approach the difficult problem of determining if the association between PM concentrations and daily morbidity and mortality is biologically plausible and causal, one must consider (1) the chemical and physical characteristics of the particles in the inhaled atmospheres, (2) the characteristics of the morbidity/mortality observed and the people who are affected, and (3) potential mechanisms that might link the two

  7. Biologically plausible learning in neural networks: a lesson from bacterial chemotaxis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimansky, Yury P

    2009-12-01

    Learning processes in the brain are usually associated with plastic changes made to optimize the strength of connections between neurons. Although many details related to biophysical mechanisms of synaptic plasticity have been discovered, it is unclear how the concurrent performance of adaptive modifications in a huge number of spatial locations is organized to minimize a given objective function. Since direct experimental observation of even a relatively small subset of such changes is not feasible, computational modeling is an indispensable investigation tool for solving this problem. However, the conventional method of error back-propagation (EBP) employed for optimizing synaptic weights in artificial neural networks is not biologically plausible. This study based on computational experiments demonstrated that such optimization can be performed rather efficiently using the same general method that bacteria employ for moving closer to an attractant or away from a repellent. With regard to neural network optimization, this method consists of regulating the probability of an abrupt change in the direction of synaptic weight modification according to the temporal gradient of the objective function. Neural networks utilizing this method (regulation of modification probability, RMP) can be viewed as analogous to swimming in the multidimensional space of their parameters in the flow of biochemical agents carrying information about the optimality criterion. The efficiency of RMP is comparable to that of EBP, while RMP has several important advantages. Since the biological plausibility of RMP is beyond a reasonable doubt, the RMP concept provides a constructive framework for the experimental analysis of learning in natural neural networks.

  8. A biologically plausible transform for visual recognition that is invariant to translation, scale and rotation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pavel eSountsov

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Visual object recognition occurs easily despite differences in position, size, and rotation of the object, but the neural mechanisms responsible for this invariance are not known. We have found a set of transforms that achieve invariance in a neurally plausible way. We find that a transform based on local spatial frequency analysis of oriented segments and on logarithmic mapping, when applied twice in an iterative fashion, produces an output image that is unique to the object and that remains constant as the input image is shifted, scaled or rotated.

  9. A Biologically Plausible Transform for Visual Recognition that is Invariant to Translation, Scale, and Rotation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sountsov, Pavel; Santucci, David M; Lisman, John E

    2011-01-01

    Visual object recognition occurs easily despite differences in position, size, and rotation of the object, but the neural mechanisms responsible for this invariance are not known. We have found a set of transforms that achieve invariance in a neurally plausible way. We find that a transform based on local spatial frequency analysis of oriented segments and on logarithmic mapping, when applied twice in an iterative fashion, produces an output image that is unique to the object and that remains constant as the input image is shifted, scaled, or rotated.

  10. Gene-ontology enrichment analysis in two independent family-based samples highlights biologically plausible processes for autism spectrum disorders.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Anney, Richard J L

    2012-02-01

    Recent genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have implicated a range of genes from discrete biological pathways in the aetiology of autism. However, despite the strong influence of genetic factors, association studies have yet to identify statistically robust, replicated major effect genes or SNPs. We apply the principle of the SNP ratio test methodology described by O\\'Dushlaine et al to over 2100 families from the Autism Genome Project (AGP). Using a two-stage design we examine association enrichment in 5955 unique gene-ontology classifications across four groupings based on two phenotypic and two ancestral classifications. Based on estimates from simulation we identify excess of association enrichment across all analyses. We observe enrichment in association for sets of genes involved in diverse biological processes, including pyruvate metabolism, transcription factor activation, cell-signalling and cell-cycle regulation. Both genes and processes that show enrichment have previously been examined in autistic disorders and offer biologically plausibility to these findings.

  11. Depressive symptoms predict head and neck cancer survival: Examining plausible behavioral and biological pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmaro, Lauren A; Sephton, Sandra E; Siwik, Chelsea J; Phillips, Kala M; Rebholz, Whitney N; Kraemer, Helena C; Giese-Davis, Janine; Wilson, Liz; Bumpous, Jeffrey M; Cash, Elizabeth D

    2018-03-01

    Head and neck cancers are associated with high rates of depression, which may increase the risk for poorer immediate and long-term outcomes. Here it was hypothesized that greater depressive symptoms would predict earlier mortality, and behavioral (treatment interruption) and biological (treatment response) mediators were examined. Patients (n = 134) reported depressive symptomatology at treatment planning. Clinical data were reviewed at the 2-year follow-up. Greater depressive symptoms were associated with significantly shorter survival (hazard ratio, 0.868; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.819-0.921; P ratio, 0.865; 95% CI, 0.774-0.966; P = .010), and poorer treatment response (odds ratio, 0.879; 95% CI, 0.803-0.963; P = .005). The poorer treatment response partially explained the depression-survival relation. Other known prognostic indicators did not challenge these results. Depressive symptoms at the time of treatment planning predict overall 2-year mortality. Effects are partly influenced by the treatment response. Depression screening and intervention may be beneficial. Future studies should examine parallel biological pathways linking depression to cancer survival, including endocrine disruption and inflammation. Cancer 2018;124:1053-60. © 2018 American Cancer Society. © 2018 American Cancer Society.

  12. Nutritional links to plausible mechanisms underlying pancreatic cancer: a conference report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hine, R Jean; Srivastava, Sudhir; Milner, John A; Ross, Sharon A

    2003-11-01

    Adenocarcinoma of the pancreas is one of most catastrophic and least understood of cancers. Evidence from clinical studies indicates that the development of pancreas cancer progresses over many years before symptoms appear. Most people with pancreatic cancer die within six months of diagnosis. The lack of early disease markers, the paucity of direct subject/patient interview data and limited availability of high quality biological samples have slowed progress toward identifying environmental and genetic disease risk factors. Much remains to be learned about the development of pancreatic cancer and about potential interventions for disease prevention. Epidemiological and mechanistic studies examining risk factors for pancreatic cancer supply little consistent or strong evidence to provide a cohesive prevention strategy for this cancer, but offer clues for future research concerning the prevention and early detection of this devastating disease. This Executive Summary provides background discussion on pancreatic cancer and summaries of each of the topics discussed at the workshop, including 1) Molecular aspects, 2) Dietary and other risk factors for pancreatic cancer, 3) The metabolic hypothesis for pancreatic cancer, 4) Preclinical studies on pancreatic cancer, 5) Methylation, 6) Oxidative stress and 7) Biomarker Profiling. This document also contains a compilation of recommendations for future research, concluding remarks, a list of speakers and participants attending the workshop, and a selection of key references to aid future research into nutritional links to mechanisms underlying pancreas cancer. The recommendations section suggests gaps in current knowledge and articulates future directions for this area of investigation.

  13. The Processing of Biologically Plausible and Implausible forms in American Sign Language: Evidence for Perceptual Tuning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Diogo; Poeppel, David; Corina, David

    The human auditory system distinguishes speech-like information from general auditory signals in a remarkably fast and efficient way. Combining psychophysics and neurophysiology (MEG), we demonstrate a similar result for the processing of visual information used for language communication in users of sign languages. We demonstrate that the earliest visual cortical responses in deaf signers viewing American Sign Language (ASL) signs show specific modulations to violations of anatomic constraints that would make the sign either possible or impossible to articulate. These neural data are accompanied with a significantly increased perceptual sensitivity to the anatomical incongruity. The differential effects in the early visual evoked potentials arguably reflect an expectation-driven assessment of somatic representational integrity, suggesting that language experience and/or auditory deprivation may shape the neuronal mechanisms underlying the analysis of complex human form. The data demonstrate that the perceptual tuning that underlies the discrimination of language and non-language information is not limited to spoken languages but extends to languages expressed in the visual modality.

  14. Climate change impacts on agriculture in 2050 under a range of plausible socioeconomic and emissions scenarios

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wiebe, Keith; Islam, Shahnila; Mason-D’Croz, Daniel; Robertson, Richard; Robinson, Sherman; Lotze-Campen, Hermann; Biewald, Anne; Bodirsky, Benjamin; Müller, Christoph; Popp, Alexander; Sands, Ronald; Tabeau, Andrzej; Van Meijl, Hans; Van der Mensbrugghe, Dominique; Kavallari, Aikaterini; Willenbockel, Dirk

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies have combined climate, crop and economic models to examine the impact of climate change on agricultural production and food security, but results have varied widely due to differences in models, scenarios and input data. Recent work has examined (and narrowed) these differences through systematic model intercomparison using a high-emissions pathway to highlight the differences. This paper extends that analysis to explore a range of plausible socioeconomic scenarios and emission pathways. Results from multiple climate and economic models are combined to examine the global and regional impacts of climate change on agricultural yields, area, production, consumption, prices and trade for coarse grains, rice, wheat, oilseeds and sugar crops to 2050. We find that climate impacts on global average yields, area, production and consumption are similar across shared socioeconomic pathways (SSP 1, 2 and 3, as we implement them based on population, income and productivity drivers), except when changes in trade policies are included. Impacts on trade and prices are higher for SSP 3 than SSP 2, and higher for SSP 2 than for SSP 1. Climate impacts for all variables are similar across low to moderate emissions pathways (RCP 4.5 and RCP 6.0), but increase for a higher emissions pathway (RCP 8.5). It is important to note that these global averages may hide regional variations. Projected reductions in agricultural yields due to climate change by 2050 are larger for some crops than those estimated for the past half century, but smaller than projected increases to 2050 due to rising demand and intrinsic productivity growth. Results illustrate the sensitivity of climate change impacts to differences in socioeconomic and emissions pathways. Yield impacts increase at high emissions levels and vary with changes in population, income and technology, but are reduced in all cases by endogenous changes in prices and other variables. (paper)

  15. MRI Proton Density Fat Fraction Is Robust Across the Biologically Plausible Range of Triglyceride Spectra in Adults With Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Cheng William; Mamidipalli, Adrija; Hooker, Jonathan C.; Hamilton, Gavin; Wolfson, Tanya; Chen, Dennis H.; Dehkordy, Soudabeh Fazeli; Middleton, Michael S.; Reeder, Scott B.; Loomba, Rohit; Sirlin, Claude B.

    2017-01-01

    Background Proton density fat fraction (PDFF) estimation requires spectral modeling of the hepatic triglyceride (TG) signal. Deviations in the TG spectrum may occur, leading to bias in PDFF quantification. Purpose To investigate the effects of varying six-peak TG spectral models on PDFF estimation bias. Study Type Retrospective secondary analysis of prospectively acquired clinical research data. Population Forty-four adults with biopsy-confirmed nonalcoholic steatohepatitis. Field Strength/Sequence Confounder-corrected chemical-shift-encoded 3T MRI (using a 2D multiecho gradient-recalled echo technique with magnitude reconstruction) and MR spectroscopy. Assessment In each patient, 61 pairs of colocalized MRI-PDFF and MRS-PDFF values were estimated: one pair used the standard six-peak spectral model, the other 60 were six-peak variants calculated by adjusting spectral model parameters over their biologically plausible ranges. MRI-PDFF values calculated using each variant model and the standard model were compared, and the agreement between MRI-PDFF and MRS-PDFF was assessed. Statistical Tests MRS-PDFF and MRI-PDFF were summarized descriptively. Bland–Altman (BA) analyses were performed between PDFF values calculated using each variant model and the standard model. Linear regressions were performed between BA biases and mean PDFF values for each variant model, and between MRI-PDFF and MRS-PDFF. Results Using the standard model, mean MRS-PDFF of the study population was 17.9±8.0% (range: 4.1–34.3%). The difference between the highest and lowest mean variant MRI-PDFF values was 1.5%. Relative to the standard model, the model with the greatest absolute BA bias overestimated PDFF by 1.2%. Bias increased with increasing PDFF (P hepatic fat content, PDFF estimation is robust across the biologically plausible range of TG spectra. Although absolute estimation bias increased with higher PDFF, its magnitude was small and unlikely to be clinically meaningful. Level of

  16. Affective decision making under uncertainty during a plausible aviation task: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Causse, Mickaël; Péran, Patrice; Dehais, Frédéric; Caravasso, Chiara Falletta; Zeffiro, Thomas; Sabatini, Umberto; Pastor, Josette

    2013-05-01

    In aeronautics, plan continuation error (PCE) represents failure to revise a flight plan despite emerging evidence suggesting that it is no longer safe. Assuming that PCE may be associated with a shift from cold to hot reasoning, we hypothesized that this transition may result from a large range of strong negative emotional influences linked with the decision to abort a landing and circle for a repeat attempt, referred to as a "go-around". We investigated this hypothesis by combining functional neuroimaging with an ecologically valid aviation task performed under contextual variation in incentive and situational uncertainty. Our goal was to identify regional brain activity related to the sorts of conservative or liberal decision-making strategies engaged when participants were both exposed to a financial payoff matrix constructed to bias responses in favor of landing acceptance, while they were simultaneously experiencing maximum levels of uncertainty related to high levels of stimulus ambiguity. Combined with the observed behavioral outcomes, our neuroimaging results revealed a shift from cold to hot decision making in response to high uncertainty when participants were exposed to the financial incentive. Most notably, while we observed activity increases in response to uncertainty in many frontal regions such as dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), less overall activity was observed when the reward was combined with uncertainty. Moreover, participants with poor decision making, quantified as a lower discriminability index d', exhibited riskier behavior coupled with lower activity in the right DLPFC. These outcomes suggest a disruptive effect of biased financial incentive and high uncertainty on the rational decision-making neural network, and consequently, on decision relevance. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Contrast normalization contributes to a biologically-plausible model of receptive-field development in primary visual cortex (V1)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willmore, Ben D.B.; Bulstrode, Harry; Tolhurst, David J.

    2012-01-01

    Neuronal populations in the primary visual cortex (V1) of mammals exhibit contrast normalization. Neurons that respond strongly to simple visual stimuli – such as sinusoidal gratings – respond less well to the same stimuli when they are presented as part of a more complex stimulus which also excites other, neighboring neurons. This phenomenon is generally attributed to generalized patterns of inhibitory connections between nearby V1 neurons. The Bienenstock, Cooper and Munro (BCM) rule is a neural network learning rule that, when trained on natural images, produces model neurons which, individually, have many tuning properties in common with real V1 neurons. However, when viewed as a population, a BCM network is very different from V1 – each member of the BCM population tends to respond to the same dominant features of visual input, producing an incomplete, highly redundant code for visual information. Here, we demonstrate that, by adding contrast normalization into the BCM rule, we arrive at a neurally-plausible Hebbian learning rule that can learn an efficient sparse, overcomplete representation that is a better model for stimulus selectivity in V1. This suggests that one role of contrast normalization in V1 is to guide the neonatal development of receptive fields, so that neurons respond to different features of visual input. PMID:22230381

  18. Nicotine dose-concentration relationship and pregnancy outcomes in rat: Biologic plausibility and implications for future research

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hussein, Jabeen; Farkas, Svetlana; MacKinnon, Yolanda; Ariano, Robert E.; Sitar, Daniel S.; Hasan, Shabih U.

    2007-01-01

    Cigarette smoke (CS) exposure during pregnancy can lead to profound adverse effects on fetal development. Although CS contains several thousand chemicals, nicotine has been widely used as its surrogate as well as in its own right as a neuroteratogen. The justification for the route and dose of nicotine administration is largely based on inferential data suggesting that nicotine 6 mg/kg/day infused continuously via osmotic mini pumps (OMP) would mimic maternal CS exposure. We provide evidence that 6 mg/kg/day nicotine dose as commonly administered to pregnant rats leads to plasma nicotine concentrations that are 3-10-fold higher than those observed in moderate to heavy smokers and pregnant mothers, respectively. Furthermore, the cumulative daily nicotine dose exceeds by several hundred fold the amount consumed by human heavy smokers. Our study does not support the widely accepted notion that regardless of the nicotine dose, a linear nicotine dose-concentration relationship exists in a steady-state OMP model. We also show that total nicotine clearance increases with advancing pregnancy but no significant change is observed between the 2nd and 3rd trimester. Furthermore, nicotine infusion even at this extremely high dose has little effect on a number of maternal and fetal biologic variables and pregnancy outcome suggesting that CS constituents other than nicotine mediate the fetal growth restriction in infants born to smoking mothers. Our current study has major implications for translational research in developmental toxicology and pharmacotherapy using nicotine replacement treatment as an aid to cessation of cigarette smoking in pregnant mothers

  19. 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

  20. Generative models versus underlying symmetries to explain biological pattern.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, S A

    2014-06-01

    Mathematical models play an increasingly important role in the interpretation of biological experiments. Studies often present a model that generates the observations, connecting hypothesized process to an observed pattern. Such generative models confirm the plausibility of an explanation and make testable hypotheses for further experiments. However, studies rarely consider the broad family of alternative models that match the same observed pattern. The symmetries that define the broad class of matching models are in fact the only aspects of information truly revealed by observed pattern. Commonly observed patterns derive from simple underlying symmetries. This article illustrates the problem by showing the symmetry associated with the observed rate of increase in fitness in a constant environment. That underlying symmetry reveals how each particular generative model defines a single example within the broad class of matching models. Further progress on the relation between pattern and process requires deeper consideration of the underlying symmetries. © 2014 The Author. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2014 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  1. Discovering biological progression underlying microarray samples.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng Qiu

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available In biological systems that undergo processes such as differentiation, a clear concept of progression exists. We present a novel computational approach, called Sample Progression Discovery (SPD, to discover patterns of biological progression underlying microarray gene expression data. SPD assumes that individual samples of a microarray dataset are related by an unknown biological process (i.e., differentiation, development, cell cycle, disease progression, and that each sample represents one unknown point along the progression of that process. SPD aims to organize the samples in a manner that reveals the underlying progression and to simultaneously identify subsets of genes that are responsible for that progression. We demonstrate the performance of SPD on a variety of microarray datasets that were generated by sampling a biological process at different points along its progression, without providing SPD any information of the underlying process. When applied to a cell cycle time series microarray dataset, SPD was not provided any prior knowledge of samples' time order or of which genes are cell-cycle regulated, yet SPD recovered the correct time order and identified many genes that have been associated with the cell cycle. When applied to B-cell differentiation data, SPD recovered the correct order of stages of normal B-cell differentiation and the linkage between preB-ALL tumor cells with their cell origin preB. When applied to mouse embryonic stem cell differentiation data, SPD uncovered a landscape of ESC differentiation into various lineages and genes that represent both generic and lineage specific processes. When applied to a prostate cancer microarray dataset, SPD identified gene modules that reflect a progression consistent with disease stages. SPD may be best viewed as a novel tool for synthesizing biological hypotheses because it provides a likely biological progression underlying a microarray dataset and, perhaps more importantly, the

  2. A Biologically Plausible Action Selection System for Cognitive Architectures: Implications of Basal Ganglia Anatomy for Learning and Decision-Making Models

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    Stocco, Andrea

    2018-01-01

    Several attempts have been made previously to provide a biological grounding for cognitive architectures by relating their components to the computations of specific brain circuits. Often, the architecture's action selection system is identified with the basal ganglia. However, this identification overlooks one of the most important features of…

  3. Biological degradation of chernozems under irrigation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oksana Naydyonova

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available We studied the changes in the state of microbial cenosis of Ukraine’s chernozems under irrigation. Considerable part of Ukraine’s chernozems is located in the areas where humidification is insufficient and unstable. Irrigation is a soil-reclamation measure for chernozems of Ukrainian Forest-steppe and Steppe which enables getting the assured yield, especially vegetable and fodder crops. At the same time, irrigation is a powerful anthropogenic factor that affects the soil, causes a significant transformation of many of its properties and regimes including biological ones. Often these changes are negative. The purpose of our investigation was to identify changes in the state of microbial cenoses of chernozem soils under irrigation which depend on such factors as the quality of irrigation water, the duration and intensity of irrigation, the initial properties of soil, the structure of crop rotation, usage of fertilizing systems and agroameliorative techniques. We identified direction and evaluated a degree of changes in biological properties of chernozems under influence of irrigation in different agro-irrigational and soil-climatic conditions. In the long-term stationary field experiments we identified the following biological indices of irrigated soils and their non-irrigated analogues: a number of microorganisms which belong to main ecological-trophic groups, activity of soil enzymes (dehydrogenase, invertase, phenol oxidase, soil phytotoxic activity, cellulose destroying capacity of soil, indices of oligotrophy and mineralization, summary biological index (SBI and index of biological degradation (BDI. Results of researches showed that irrigation unbalanced the soil ecosystem and stipulated the forming of microbial cenosis with new parameters. Long-term intensive irrigation of typical chernozem (Kharkiv Region with fresh water under condition of 4-fields vegetable crop rotation led to the degradation changes of its microbial cenosis such as

  4. Plausibility and evidence: the case of homeopathy.

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    Rutten, Lex; Mathie, Robert T; Fisher, Peter; Goossens, Maria; van Wassenhoven, Michel

    2013-08-01

    Homeopathy is controversial and hotly debated. The conclusions of systematic reviews of randomised controlled trials of homeopathy vary from 'comparable to conventional medicine' to 'no evidence of effects beyond placebo'. It is claimed that homeopathy conflicts with scientific laws and that homoeopaths reject the naturalistic outlook, but no evidence has been cited. We are homeopathic physicians and researchers who do not reject the scientific outlook; we believe that examination of the prior beliefs underlying this enduring stand-off can advance the debate. We show that interpretations of the same set of evidence--for homeopathy and for conventional medicine--can diverge. Prior disbelief in homeopathy is rooted in the perceived implausibility of any conceivable mechanism of action. Using the 'crossword analogy', we demonstrate that plausibility bias impedes assessment of the clinical evidence. Sweeping statements about the scientific impossibility of homeopathy are themselves unscientific: scientific statements must be precise and testable. There is growing evidence that homeopathic preparations can exert biological effects; due consideration of such research would reduce the influence of prior beliefs on the assessment of systematic review evidence.

  5. Toward Petascale Biologically Plausible Neural Networks

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    Long, Lyle

    This talk will describe an approach to achieving petascale neural networks. Artificial intelligence has been oversold for many decades. Computers in the beginning could only do about 16,000 operations per second. Computer processing power, however, has been doubling every two years thanks to Moore's law, and growing even faster due to massively parallel architectures. Finally, 60 years after the first AI conference we have computers on the order of the performance of the human brain (1016 operations per second). The main issues now are algorithms, software, and learning. We have excellent models of neurons, such as the Hodgkin-Huxley model, but we do not know how the human neurons are wired together. With careful attention to efficient parallel computing, event-driven programming, table lookups, and memory minimization massive scale simulations can be performed. The code that will be described was written in C + + and uses the Message Passing Interface (MPI). It uses the full Hodgkin-Huxley neuron model, not a simplified model. It also allows arbitrary network structures (deep, recurrent, convolutional, all-to-all, etc.). The code is scalable, and has, so far, been tested on up to 2,048 processor cores using 107 neurons and 109 synapses.

  6. Optimality and Plausibility in Language Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael R. Levot

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The Minimalist Program in generative syntax has been the subject of much rancour, a good proportion of it stoked by Noam Chomsky’s suggestion that language may represent “a ‘perfect solution’ to minimal design specifications.” A particular flash point has been the application of Minimalist principles to speculations about how language evolved in the human species. This paper argues that Minimalism is well supported as a plausible approach to language evolution. It is claimed that an assumption of minimal design specifications like that employed in MP syntax satisfies three key desiderata of evolutionary and general scientific plausibility: Physical Optimism, Rational Optimism, and Darwin’s Problem. In support of this claim, the methodologies employed in MP to maximise parsimony are characterised through an analysis of recent theories in Minimalist syntax, and those methodologies are defended with reference to practices and arguments from evolutionary biology and other natural sciences.

  7. Ecological and biological systems under extreme conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zlobin, V S; Nenishkiene, V B

    1989-01-01

    The behaviour of biological and ecological systems under extreme conditions (high and low temperatures, electromagnetic fields of different frequencies, ultraviolet. X-ray and gamma radiation) is analyzed. The ecosystems of macro- and microalgae living in salt, brackinsh and fresh waters are considered in the evolutional aspect basing on their chemical and biochemical composition taking into account the mechanism of radionuclide uptake by water plant cells, osmotic regulation, water and ice structures, combined water in a living organism. The problems of life-support in cosmic flights and of mastering the planets of the Solar system, for instance Mars and Venus, utilizing some microalgae and bacteria with high adaptive properties are discussed. Abnormal water points and their role in the metabolism of a water plant cell are estimated. The 'life niches' are determined at the temperatures exceeding 100 deg C and the possibility of existence for living organisms in high pressure and temperature is grounded. Attempts are made to change the metabolism of the plant and animal cell by subjecting it to the action of electromagnetic and thermal fields, heavy water, chemical and pharmocological substances changing the structure of bound water. 333 refs.; 79 tabs.

  8. Heuristic Elements of Plausible Reasoning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dudczak, Craig A.

    At least some of the reasoning processes involved in argumentation rely on inferences which do not fit within the traditional categories of inductive or deductive reasoning. The reasoning processes involved in plausibility judgments have neither the formal certainty of deduction nor the imputed statistical probability of induction. When utilizing…

  9. Plausible values in statistical inference

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marsman, M.

    2014-01-01

    In Chapter 2 it is shown that the marginal distribution of plausible values is a consistent estimator of the true latent variable distribution, and, furthermore, that convergence is monotone in an embedding in which the number of items tends to infinity. This result is used to clarify some of the

  10. Silk-polypyrrole biocompatible actuator performance under biologically relevant conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagler, Jo'elen; Peterson, Ben; Murphy, Amanda; Leger, Janelle

    Biocompatible actuators that are capable of controlled movement and can function under biologically relevant conditions are of significant interest in biomedical fields. Previously, we have demonstrated that a composite material of silk biopolymer and the conducting polymer polypyrrole (PPy) can be formed into a bilayer device that can bend under applied voltage. Further, these silk-PPy composites can generate forces comparable to human muscle (>0.1 MPa) making them ideal candidates for interfacing with biological tissues. Here silk-PPy composite films are tested for performance under biologically relevant conditions including exposure to a complex protein serum and biologically relevant temperatures. Free-end bending actuation performance, current response, force generation and, mass degradation were investigated . Preliminary results show that when exposed to proteins and biologically relevant temperatures, these silk-PPy composites show minimal degradation and are able to generate forces and conduct currents comparable to devices tested under standard conditions. NSF.

  11. Biological phosphorus uptake under anoxic and aerobic conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kerrn-Jespersen, Jens Peter; Henze, Mogens

    1993-01-01

    Biological phosphorus removal was investigated under anoxic and aerobic conditions. Tests were made to establish whether phosphorus accumulating bacteria can take up phosphate under anoxic conditions and thus utilise nitrate as oxidant. Furthermore, it was tested how the amount of organic matter...... as oxidant. The phosphorus uptake was more rapid under aerobic conditions than under anoxic conditions. The explanation of this is that all phosphorus accumulating bacteria take up phosphate under aerobic conditions, whereas only part of the phosphorus accumulating bacteria take up phosphate under anoxic...

  12. Pilgrims sailing the Titanic: plausibility effects on memory for misinformation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinze, Scott R; Slaten, Daniel G; Horton, William S; Jenkins, Ryan; Rapp, David N

    2014-02-01

    People rely on information they read even when it is inaccurate (Marsh, Meade, & Roediger, Journal of Memory and Language 49:519-536, 2003), but how ubiquitous is this phenomenon? In two experiments, we investigated whether this tendency to encode and rely on inaccuracies from text might be influenced by the plausibility of misinformation. In Experiment 1, we presented stories containing inaccurate plausible statements (e.g., "The Pilgrims' ship was the Godspeed"), inaccurate implausible statements (e.g., . . . the Titanic), or accurate statements (e.g., . . . the Mayflower). On a subsequent test of general knowledge, participants relied significantly less on implausible than on plausible inaccuracies from the texts but continued to rely on accurate information. In Experiment 2, we replicated these results with the addition of a think-aloud procedure to elicit information about readers' noticing and evaluative processes for plausible and implausible misinformation. Participants indicated more skepticism and less acceptance of implausible than of plausible inaccuracies. In contrast, they often failed to notice, completely ignored, and at times even explicitly accepted the misinformation provided by plausible lures. These results offer insight into the conditions under which reliance on inaccurate information occurs and suggest potential mechanisms that may underlie reported misinformation effects.

  13. Bisimulation for Single-Agent Plausibility Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Mikkel Birkegaard; Bolander, Thomas; van Ditmarsch, H.

    2013-01-01

    define a proper notion of bisimulation, and prove that bisimulation corresponds to logical equivalence on image-finite models. We relate our results to other epistemic notions, such as safe belief and degrees of belief. Our results imply that there are only finitely many non-bisimilar single......-agent epistemic plausibility models on a finite set of propositions. This gives decidability for single-agent epistemic plausibility planning....

  14. Nanomaterials modulate stem cell differentiation: biological interaction and underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Min; Li, Song; Le, Weidong

    2017-10-25

    Stem cells are unspecialized cells that have the potential for self-renewal and differentiation into more specialized cell types. The chemical and physical properties of surrounding microenvironment contribute to the growth and differentiation of stem cells and consequently play crucial roles in the regulation of stem cells' fate. Nanomaterials hold great promise in biological and biomedical fields owing to their unique properties, such as controllable particle size, facile synthesis, large surface-to-volume ratio, tunable surface chemistry, and biocompatibility. Over the recent years, accumulating evidence has shown that nanomaterials can facilitate stem cell proliferation and differentiation, and great effort is undertaken to explore their possible modulating manners and mechanisms on stem cell differentiation. In present review, we summarize recent progress in the regulating potential of various nanomaterials on stem cell differentiation and discuss the possible cell uptake, biological interaction and underlying mechanisms.

  15. Biology of Dermacentor marginatus (Acari: Ixodidae under laboratory conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Mehdi Darvishi

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To investigate and survey the biology of Dermacentor marginatus (D. marginatus under laboratory conditions. Methods: In this investigation, D. marginatus adult ticks were collected from sheep in Semnan province. Then various developmental stages of D. marginatus including larvae, nymphs and adult males and females under laboratory condition were bred and their biology was scrutinized. Results: The requisite time to complete the life cycle of D. marginatus under controlled laboratory conditions for larvae (26 °C, 75% relative humidity and nymph (26 °C, 95% relative humidity moulting, was on average 92 d (range 75-104 d, including preoviposition and egg incubation (22.5 d, larvae incubation (20.5 d, nymphal stage (28 d along with male maturation (21 d. The index of conversion efficiency and the index of reproduction efficiency in females were 0.397 and 8.300, respectively. Conclusions: Although in this investigation, there was no meaningful correlation between preoviposition period and the weight of female ticks which were laid successfully. The significant linear relationship was fully observed between the weight of engorged female of D. marginatus and the number of eggs laid. The mean of preoviposition period from 5.4 d in autumn to 34.2 d in spring increased. The minimum weight of ticks with laying capacity was 69 mg and lighter ticks (21 mg either did not lay or if they did their eggs did not hatch.

  16. Anatomically Plausible Surface Alignment and Reconstruction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Paulsen, Rasmus R.; Larsen, Rasmus

    2010-01-01

    With the increasing clinical use of 3D surface scanners, there is a need for accurate and reliable algorithms that can produce anatomically plausible surfaces. In this paper, a combined method for surface alignment and reconstruction is proposed. It is based on an implicit surface representation...

  17. Probabilistic reasoning in intelligent systems networks of plausible inference

    CERN Document Server

    Pearl, Judea

    1988-01-01

    Probabilistic Reasoning in Intelligent Systems is a complete and accessible account of the theoretical foundations and computational methods that underlie plausible reasoning under uncertainty. The author provides a coherent explication of probability as a language for reasoning with partial belief and offers a unifying perspective on other AI approaches to uncertainty, such as the Dempster-Shafer formalism, truth maintenance systems, and nonmonotonic logic. The author distinguishes syntactic and semantic approaches to uncertainty--and offers techniques, based on belief networks, that provid

  18. Spectral Mixing in Nervous Systems: Experimental Evidenceand Biologically Plausible Circuits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinfeld, D.; Mehta, S. B.

    The ability to compute the difference frequency for two periodic signals depends on a nonlinear operation that mixes those signals. Behavioral and psychophysical evidence suggest that such mixing is likely to occur in the vertebrate nervous system as a means to compare rhythmic sensory signals, such as occurs in human audition, and as a means to lock an intrinsic rhythm to a sensory input. Electrophysiological data from electroreceptors in the immobilized electric fish and somatosensory cortex in the anesthetized rat yield direct evidence for such mixing, providing a neurological substrate for the modulation and demodulation of rhythmic neuronal signals. We consider an analytical model of spectral mixing that makes use of the threshold characteristics of neuronal firing and which has features consistent with the experimental observations. This model serves as a guide for constructing circuits that isolate given mixture components. In particular, such circuits can generate nearly pure difference tones from sinusoidal inputs without the use of band-pass filters, in analogy to an image-reject mixer in communications engineering. We speculate that such computations may play a role in coding of sensory input and feedback stabilization of motor output in nervous systems.

  19. Value-Relevance of Biological Assets under IFRS

    OpenAIRE

    Rute Gonçalves; Patrícia Lopes

    2015-01-01

    Using 389 firm-year observations of listed firms worldwide in 27 countries that adopted International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) until 2010, for the period 2011-2013, the purpose of this paper is to examine the value-relevance of fair value accounting of biological assets. In order to operationalize it as the book value’s ability to explain market equity value, this study adjusts the Ohlson model. The results support that recognized biological assets are value-relevant. After includ...

  20. Introductory Biology Textbooks Under-Represent Scientific Process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dara B. Duncan

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Attrition of undergraduates from Biology majors is a long-standing problem. Introductory courses that fail to engage students or spark their curiosity by emphasizing the open-ended and creative nature of biological investigation and discovery could contribute to student detachment from the field. Our hypothesis was that introductory biology books devote relatively few figures to illustration of the design and interpretation of experiments or field studies, thereby de-emphasizing the scientific process.To investigate this possibility, we examined figures in six Introductory Biology textbooks published in 2008. On average, multistep scientific investigations were presented in fewer than 5% of the hundreds of figures in each book. Devoting such a small percentage of figures to the processes by which discoveries are made discourages an emphasis on scientific thinking. We suggest that by increasing significantly the illustration of scientific investigations, textbooks could support undergraduates’ early interest in biology, stimulate the development of design and analytical skills, and inspire some students to participate in investigations of their own.

  1. Long ligands reinforce biological adhesion under shear flow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belyaev, Aleksey V.

    2018-04-01

    In this work, computer modeling has been used to show that longer ligands allow biological cells (e.g., blood platelets) to withstand stronger flows after their adhesion to solid walls. A mechanistic model of polymer-mediated ligand-receptor adhesion between a microparticle (cell) and a flat wall has been developed. The theoretical threshold between adherent and non-adherent regimes has been derived analytically and confirmed by simulations. These results lead to a deeper understanding of numerous biophysical processes, e.g., arterial thrombosis, and to the design of new biomimetic colloid-polymer systems.

  2. Analytic models of plausible gravitational lens potentials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baltz, Edward A.; Marshall, Phil; Oguri, Masamune

    2009-01-01

    Gravitational lenses on galaxy scales are plausibly modelled as having ellipsoidal symmetry and a universal dark matter density profile, with a Sérsic profile to describe the distribution of baryonic matter. Predicting all lensing effects requires knowledge of the total lens potential: in this work we give analytic forms for that of the above hybrid model. Emphasising that complex lens potentials can be constructed from simpler components in linear combination, we provide a recipe for attaining elliptical symmetry in either projected mass or lens potential. We also provide analytic formulae for the lens potentials of Sérsic profiles for integer and half-integer index. We then present formulae describing the gravitational lensing effects due to smoothly-truncated universal density profiles in cold dark matter model. For our isolated haloes the density profile falls off as radius to the minus fifth or seventh power beyond the tidal radius, functional forms that allow all orders of lens potential derivatives to be calculated analytically, while ensuring a non-divergent total mass. We show how the observables predicted by this profile differ from that of the original infinite-mass NFW profile. Expressions for the gravitational flexion are highlighted. We show how decreasing the tidal radius allows stripped haloes to be modelled, providing a framework for a fuller investigation of dark matter substructure in galaxies and clusters. Finally we remark on the need for finite mass halo profiles when doing cosmological ray-tracing simulations, and the need for readily-calculable higher order derivatives of the lens potential when studying catastrophes in strong lenses

  3. The Utility of Cognitive Plausibility in Language Acquisition Modeling: Evidence From Word Segmentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Lawrence; Pearl, Lisa

    2015-11-01

    The informativity of a computational model of language acquisition is directly related to how closely it approximates the actual acquisition task, sometimes referred to as the model's cognitive plausibility. We suggest that though every computational model necessarily idealizes the modeled task, an informative language acquisition model can aim to be cognitively plausible in multiple ways. We discuss these cognitive plausibility checkpoints generally and then apply them to a case study in word segmentation, investigating a promising Bayesian segmentation strategy. We incorporate cognitive plausibility by using an age-appropriate unit of perceptual representation, evaluating the model output in terms of its utility, and incorporating cognitive constraints into the inference process. Our more cognitively plausible model shows a beneficial effect of cognitive constraints on segmentation performance. One interpretation of this effect is as a synergy between the naive theories of language structure that infants may have and the cognitive constraints that limit the fidelity of their inference processes, where less accurate inference approximations are better when the underlying assumptions about how words are generated are less accurate. More generally, these results highlight the utility of incorporating cognitive plausibility more fully into computational models of language acquisition. Copyright © 2015 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  4. Complex systems of biological interest stability under ionising radiations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maclot, Sylvain

    2014-01-01

    This PhD work presents the study of stability of molecular systems of biological interest in the gas phase after interaction with ionising radiations. The use of ionising radiation can probe the physical chemistry of complex systems at the molecular scale and thus consider their intrinsic properties. Beyond the fundamental aspect, this work is part of the overall understanding of radiation effects on living organisms and in particular the use of ionizing radiation in radiotherapy. Specifically, this study focused on the use of low-energy multiply charged ions (tens of keV) provided by the GANIL (Caen), which includes most of the experiments presented. In addition, experiments using VUV photons were also conducted at synchrotron ELETTRA (Trieste, Italy). The bio-molecular systems studied are amino acids and nucleic acid constituents. Using an experimental crossed beams device allows interaction between biomolecules and ionising radiation leads mainly to the ionization and fragmentation of the system. The study of its relaxation dynamics is by time-of-flight mass spectrometry coupled to a coincidences measurements method. It is shown that an approach combining experiment and theory allows a detailed study of the fragmentation dynamics of complex systems. The results indicate that fragmentation is generally governed by the Coulomb repulsion but the intramolecular rearrangements involve specific relaxation mechanisms. (author) [fr

  5. Understanding the basic biology underlying the flavor world of children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie A. MENNELLA, Alison K. VENTURA

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Health organizations worldwide recommend that adults and children minimize intakes of excess energy and salty, sweet, and fatty foods (all of which are highly preferred tastes and eat diets richer in whole grains, low- and non- fat dairy products, legumes, fish, lean meat, fruits, and vegetables (many of which taste bitter. Despite such recommendations and the well-established benefits of these foods to human health, adults are not complying, nor are their children. A primary reason for this difficulty is the remarkably potent rewarding properties of the tastes and flavors of foods high in sweetness, saltiness, and fatness. While we cannot easily change children’s basic ingrained biology of liking sweets and avoiding bitterness, we can modulate their flavor preferences by providing early exposure, starting in utero, to a wide variety of flavors within healthy foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Because the flavors of foods mothers eat during pregnancy and lactation also flavor amniotic fluid and breast milk and become preferred by infants, pregnant and lactating women should widen their food choices to include as many flavorful and healthy foods as possible. These experiences, combined with repeated exposure to nutritious foods and flavor variety during the weaning period and beyond, should maximize the chances that children will select and enjoy a healthier diet [Current Zoology 56 (6: 834–841, 2010].

  6. Exposures to airborne particulate matter and adverse perinatal outcomes: a biologically plausible mechanistic framework for exploring potential Exposição à matéria particulada aérea e efeitos perinatais adversos: referencial mecanístico biologicamente plausível para exploração de potenciais

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Srimathi Kannan

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available This article has three objectives: to describe the biologically plausible mechanistic pathways by which exposure to particulate matter (PM may lead to adverse perinatal outcomes of low birth weight (LBW, intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR, and preterm delivery (PTD; review evidence showing that nutrition affects biologic pathways; and explain mechanisms by which nutrition may modify the impact of PM exposure on perinatal outcomes. We propose an interdisciplinary framework that brings together maternal and infant nutrition, air pollution exposure assessment, and cardiopulmonary and perinatal epidemiology. Five possible biologic mechanisms have been put forth in the emerging environmental sciences literature and provide corollaries for the proposed framework. The literature indicates that the effects of PM on LBW, PTD, and IUGR may manifest through the cardiovascular mechanisms of oxidative stress, inflammation, coagulation, endothelial function, and hemodynamic responses. PM exposure studies relating mechanistic pathways to perinatal outcomes should consider the likelihood that biologic responses and adverse birth outcomes may be derived from both PM and non-PM sources. We present strategies for empirically testing the proposed model and developing future research efforts.São três os objetivos deste artigo: descrever rotas mecanísticas biologicamente plausíveis pelas quais a exposição à matéria particulada (MP pode levar a efeitos perinatais adversos, como baixo peso ao nascer (BPN, retardo do crescimento intra-uterino (RCIU e nascimentos pré-termo (NPT; fazer uma revisão de evidências mostrando que a nutrição afeta rotas biológicas; explicar os mecanismos através dos quais a nutrição pode modificar o impacto da exposição a MP nos efeitos perinatais adversos. Propomos um referencial interdisciplinar que aproxime nutrição materna e infantil, avaliação de poluição do ar e epidemiologia cardiopulmonar e perinatal

  7. Biological methane production under putative Enceladus-like conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taubner, Ruth-Sophie; Pappenreiter, Patricia; Zwicker, Jennifer; Smrzka, Daniel; Pruckner, Christian; Kolar, Philipp; Bernacchi, Sébastien; Seifert, Arne H; Krajete, Alexander; Bach, Wolfgang; Peckmann, Jörn; Paulik, Christian; Firneis, Maria G; Schleper, Christa; Rittmann, Simon K-M R

    2018-02-27

    The detection of silica-rich dust particles, as an indication for ongoing hydrothermal activity, and the presence of water and organic molecules in the plume of Enceladus, have made Saturn's icy moon a hot spot in the search for potential extraterrestrial life. Methanogenic archaea are among the organisms that could potentially thrive under the predicted conditions on Enceladus, considering that both molecular hydrogen (H 2 ) and methane (CH 4 ) have been detected in the plume. Here we show that a methanogenic archaeon, Methanothermococcus okinawensis, can produce CH 4 under physicochemical conditions extrapolated for Enceladus. Up to 72% carbon dioxide to CH 4 conversion is reached at 50 bar in the presence of potential inhibitors. Furthermore, kinetic and thermodynamic computations of low-temperature serpentinization indicate that there may be sufficient H 2 gas production to serve as a substrate for CH 4 production on Enceladus. We conclude that some of the CH 4 detected in the plume of Enceladus might, in principle, be produced by methanogens.

  8. Neural networks, nativism, and the plausibility of constructivism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quartz, S R

    1993-09-01

    Recent interest in PDP (parallel distributed processing) models is due in part to the widely held belief that they challenge many of the assumptions of classical cognitive science. In the domain of language acquisition, for example, there has been much interest in the claim that PDP models might undermine nativism. Related arguments based on PDP learning have also been given against Fodor's anti-constructivist position--a position that has contributed to the widespread dismissal of constructivism. A limitation of many of the claims regarding PDP learning, however, is that the principles underlying this learning have not been rigorously characterized. In this paper, I examine PDP models from within the framework of Valiant's PAC (probably approximately correct) model of learning, now the dominant model in machine learning, and which applies naturally to neural network learning. From this perspective, I evaluate the implications of PDP models for nativism and Fodor's influential anti-constructivist position. In particular, I demonstrate that, contrary to a number of claims, PDP models are nativist in a robust sense. I also demonstrate that PDP models actually serve as a good illustration of Fodor's anti-constructivist position. While these results may at first suggest that neural network models in general are incapable of the sort of concept acquisition that is required to refute Fodor's anti-constructivist position, I suggest that there is an alternative form of neural network learning that demonstrates the plausibility of constructivism. This alternative form of learning is a natural interpretation of the constructivist position in terms of neural network learning, as it employs learning algorithms that incorporate the addition of structure in addition to weight modification schemes. By demonstrating that there is a natural and plausible interpretation of constructivism in terms of neural network learning, the position that nativism is the only plausible model of

  9. Uncovering the underlying physical mechanisms of biological systems via quantification of landscape and flux

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xu Li; Chu Xiakun; Yan Zhiqiang; Zheng Xiliang; Zhang Kun; Zhang Feng; Yan Han; Wu Wei; Wang Jin

    2016-01-01

    In this review, we explore the physical mechanisms of biological processes such as protein folding and recognition, ligand binding, and systems biology, including cell cycle, stem cell, cancer, evolution, ecology, and neural networks. Our approach is based on the landscape and flux theory for nonequilibrium dynamical systems. This theory provides a unifying principle and foundation for investigating the underlying mechanisms and physical quantification of biological systems. (topical review)

  10. 78 FR 55326 - Determinations Regarding Use of Chemical Weapons in Syria Under the Chemical and Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-10

    ... DEPARTMENT OF STATE [Public Notice 8460] Determinations Regarding Use of Chemical Weapons in Syria Under the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 AGENCY: Bureau of... Government has determined on August 2, pursuant to Section 306(a) of the Chemical and Biological Weapons...

  11. Application of plausible reasoning to AI-based control systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berenji, Hamid; Lum, Henry, Jr.

    1987-01-01

    Some current approaches to plausible reasoning in artificial intelligence are reviewed and discussed. Some of the most significant recent advances in plausible and approximate reasoning are examined. A synergism among the techniques of uncertainty management is advocated, and brief discussions on the certainty factor approach, probabilistic approach, Dempster-Shafer theory of evidence, possibility theory, linguistic variables, and fuzzy control are presented. Some extensions to these methods are described, and the applications of the methods are considered.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  13. Biological mechanisms underlying the role of physical fitness in health and resilience

    OpenAIRE

    Silverman, Marni N.; Deuster, Patricia A.

    2014-01-01

    Physical fitness, achieved through regular exercise and/or spontaneous physical activity, confers resilience by inducing positive psychological and physiological benefits, blunting stress reactivity, protecting against potentially adverse behavioural and metabolic consequences of stressful events and preventing many chronic diseases. In this review, we discuss the biological mechanisms underlying the beneficial effects of physical fitness on mental and physical health. Physical fitness appear...

  14. Searching for Plausible N-k Contingencies Endangering Voltage Stability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Weckesser, Johannes Tilman Gabriel; Van Cutsem, Thierry

    2017-01-01

    This paper presents a novel search algorithm using time-domain simulations to identify plausible N − k contingencies endangering voltage stability. Starting from an initial list of disturbances, progressively more severe contingencies are investigated. After simulation of a N − k contingency......, the simulation results are assessed. If the system response is unstable, a plausible harmful contingency sequence has been found. Otherwise, components affected by the contingencies are considered as candidate next event leading to N − (k + 1) contingencies. This implicitly takes into account hidden failures...

  15. A Stochastic Model of Plausibility in Live Virtual Constructive Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-09-14

    from the model parameters that are inputs to the computer model ( mathematical model) but whose exact values are unknown to experimentalists and...Environments Jeremy R. Millar Follow this and additional works at: https://scholar.afit.edu/etd Part of the Computer Sciences Commons This Dissertation...25 3.3 Computing Plausibility Exceedance Probabilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 IV

  16. Endocrine distrupting chemicals and human health: The plausibility ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The plausibility of research results on DDT and reproductive health ... cals in the environment and that human health is inextri- cably linked to the health of .... periods of folliculo-genesis or embryo-genesis that increases risk for adverse effects.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

    Over the past two years, through an NSF RCN UBE grant, the ASBMB has held regional workshops for faculty members from around the country. The workshops have focused on developing lists of Core Principles or Foundational Concepts in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, a list of foundational skills, and foundational concepts from Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics that all Biochemistry or Molecular Biology majors must understand to complete their major coursework. The allied fields working group created a survey to validate foundational concepts from Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics identified from participant feedback at various workshops. One-hundred twenty participants responded to the survey and 68% of the respondents answered yes to the question: "We have identified the following as the core concepts and underlying theories from Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics that Biochemistry majors or Molecular Biology majors need to understand after they complete their major courses: 1) mechanical concepts from Physics, 2) energy and thermodynamic concepts from Physics, 3) critical concepts of structure from chemistry, 4) critical concepts of reactions from Chemistry, and 5) essential Mathematics. In your opinion, is the above list complete?" Respondents also delineated subcategories they felt should be included in these broad categories. From the results of the survey and this analysis the allied fields working group constructed a consensus list of allied fields concepts, which will help inform Biochemistry and Molecular Biology educators when considering the ASBMB recommended curriculum for Biochemistry or Molecular Biology majors and in the development of appropriate assessment tools to gauge student understanding of how these concepts relate to biochemistry and molecular biology. © 2013 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  18. Biologically Based Methods for Pest Management in Agriculture under Changing Climates: Challenges and Future Directions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chidawanyika, Frank; Mudavanhu, Pride; Nyamukondiwa, Casper

    2012-11-09

    The current changes in global climatic regimes present a significant societal challenge, affecting in all likelihood insect physiology, biochemistry, biogeography and population dynamics. With the increasing resistance of many insect pest species to chemical insecticides and an increasing organic food market, pest control strategies are slowly shifting towards more sustainable, ecologically sound and economically viable options. Biologically based pest management strategies present such opportunities through predation or parasitism of pests and plant direct or indirect defense mechanisms that can all be important components of sustainable integrated pest management programs. Inevitably, the efficacy of biological control systems is highly dependent on natural enemy-prey interactions, which will likely be modified by changing climates. Therefore, knowledge of how insect pests and their natural enemies respond to climate variation is of fundamental importance in understanding biological insect pest management under global climate change. Here, we discuss biological control, its challenges under climate change scenarios and how increased global temperatures will require adaptive management strategies to cope with changing status of insects and their natural enemies.

  19. Biologically Based Methods for Pest Management in Agriculture under Changing Climates: Challenges and Future Directions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Casper Nyamukondiwa

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The current changes in global climatic regimes present a significant societal challenge, affecting in all likelihood insect physiology, biochemistry, biogeography and population dynamics. With the increasing resistance of many insect pest species to chemical insecticides and an increasing organic food market, pest control strategies are slowly shifting towards more sustainable, ecologically sound and economically viable options. Biologically based pest management strategies present such opportunities through predation or parasitism of pests and plant direct or indirect defense mechanisms that can all be important components of sustainable integrated pest management programs. Inevitably, the efficacy of biological control systems is highly dependent on natural enemy-prey interactions, which will likely be modified by changing climates. Therefore, knowledge of how insect pests and their natural enemies respond to climate variation is of fundamental importance in understanding biological insect pest management under global climate change. Here, we discuss biological control, its challenges under climate change scenarios and how increased global temperatures will require adaptive management strategies to cope with changing status of insects and their natural enemies.

  20. Under-reporting of accidents involving biological material by nursing professionals at a Brazilian emergency hospital.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Facchin, Luiza Tayar; Gir, Elucir; Pazin-Filho, Antonio; Hayashida, Miyeko; da Silva Canini, Silvia Rita Marin

    2013-01-01

    Pathogens can be transmitted to health professionals after contact with biological material. The exact number of infections deriving from these events is still unknown, due to the lack of systematic surveillance data and under-reporting. A cross-sectional study was carried out, involving 451 nursing professionals from a Brazilian tertiary emergency hospital between April and July 2009. Through an active search, cases of under-reporting of occupational accidents with biological material by the nursing team were identified by means of individual interviews. The Institutional Review Board approved the research project. Over half of the professionals (237) had been victims of one or more accidents (425 in total) involving biological material, and 23.76% of the accidents had not been officially reported using an occupational accident report. Among the underreported accidents, 53.47% were percutaneous and 67.33% were bloodborne. The main reason for nonreporting was that the accident had been considered low risk. The under-reporting rate (23.76%) was low in comparison with other studies, but most cases of exposure were high risk.

  1. Large-scale association analyses identify new loci influencing glycemic traits and provide insight into the underlying biological pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Robert A; Lagou, Vasiliki; Welch, Ryan P; Wheeler, Eleanor; Montasser, May E; Luan, Jian’an; Mägi, Reedik; Strawbridge, Rona J; Rehnberg, Emil; Gustafsson, Stefan; Kanoni, Stavroula; Rasmussen-Torvik, Laura J; Yengo, Loïc; Lecoeur, Cecile; Shungin, Dmitry; Sanna, Serena; Sidore, Carlo; Johnson, Paul C D; Jukema, J Wouter; Johnson, Toby; Mahajan, Anubha; Verweij, Niek; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Hottenga, Jouke-Jan; Shah, Sonia; Smith, Albert V; Sennblad, Bengt; Gieger, Christian; Salo, Perttu; Perola, Markus; Timpson, Nicholas J; Evans, David M; Pourcain, Beate St; Wu, Ying; Andrews, Jeanette S; Hui, Jennie; Bielak, Lawrence F; Zhao, Wei; Horikoshi, Momoko; Navarro, Pau; Isaacs, Aaron; O’Connell, Jeffrey R; Stirrups, Kathleen; Vitart, Veronique; Hayward, Caroline; Esko, Tönu; Mihailov, Evelin; Fraser, Ross M; Fall, Tove; Voight, Benjamin F; Raychaudhuri, Soumya; Chen, Han; Lindgren, Cecilia M; Morris, Andrew P; Rayner, Nigel W; Robertson, Neil; Rybin, Denis; Liu, Ching-Ti; Beckmann, Jacques S; Willems, Sara M; Chines, Peter S; Jackson, Anne U; Kang, Hyun Min; Stringham, Heather M; Song, Kijoung; Tanaka, Toshiko; Peden, John F; Goel, Anuj; Hicks, Andrew A; An, Ping; Müller-Nurasyid, Martina; Franco-Cereceda, Anders; Folkersen, Lasse; Marullo, Letizia; Jansen, Hanneke; Oldehinkel, Albertine J; Bruinenberg, Marcel; Pankow, James S; North, Kari E; Forouhi, Nita G; Loos, Ruth J F; Edkins, Sarah; Varga, Tibor V; Hallmans, Göran; Oksa, Heikki; Antonella, Mulas; Nagaraja, Ramaiah; Trompet, Stella; Ford, Ian; Bakker, Stephan J L; Kong, Augustine; Kumari, Meena; Gigante, Bruna; Herder, Christian; Munroe, Patricia B; Caulfield, Mark; Antti, Jula; Mangino, Massimo; Small, Kerrin; Miljkovic, Iva; Liu, Yongmei; Atalay, Mustafa; Kiess, Wieland; James, Alan L; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Uitterlinden, Andre G; Palmer, Colin N A; Doney, Alex S F; Willemsen, Gonneke; Smit, Johannes H; Campbell, Susan; Polasek, Ozren; Bonnycastle, Lori L; Hercberg, Serge; Dimitriou, Maria; Bolton, Jennifer L; Fowkes, Gerard R; Kovacs, Peter; Lindström, Jaana; Zemunik, Tatijana; Bandinelli, Stefania; Wild, Sarah H; Basart, Hanneke V; Rathmann, Wolfgang; Grallert, Harald; Maerz, Winfried; Kleber, Marcus E; Boehm, Bernhard O; Peters, Annette; Pramstaller, Peter P; Province, Michael A; Borecki, Ingrid B; Hastie, Nicholas D; Rudan, Igor; Campbell, Harry; Watkins, Hugh; Farrall, Martin; Stumvoll, Michael; Ferrucci, Luigi; Waterworth, Dawn M; Bergman, Richard N; Collins, Francis S; Tuomilehto, Jaakko; Watanabe, Richard M; de Geus, Eco J C; Penninx, Brenda W; Hofman, Albert; Oostra, Ben A; Psaty, Bruce M; Vollenweider, Peter; Wilson, James F; Wright, Alan F; Hovingh, G Kees; Metspalu, Andres; Uusitupa, Matti; Magnusson, Patrik K E; Kyvik, Kirsten O; Kaprio, Jaakko; Price, Jackie F; Dedoussis, George V; Deloukas, Panos; Meneton, Pierre; Lind, Lars; Boehnke, Michael; Shuldiner, Alan R; van Duijn, Cornelia M; Morris, Andrew D; Toenjes, Anke; Peyser, Patricia A; Beilby, John P; Körner, Antje; Kuusisto, Johanna; Laakso, Markku; Bornstein, Stefan R; Schwarz, Peter E H; Lakka, Timo A; Rauramaa, Rainer; Adair, Linda S; Smith, George Davey; Spector, Tim D; Illig, Thomas; de Faire, Ulf; Hamsten, Anders; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Kivimaki, Mika; Hingorani, Aroon; Keinanen-Kiukaanniemi, Sirkka M; Saaristo, Timo E; Boomsma, Dorret I; Stefansson, Kari; van der Harst, Pim; Dupuis, Josée; Pedersen, Nancy L; Sattar, Naveed; Harris, Tamara B; Cucca, Francesco; Ripatti, Samuli; Salomaa, Veikko; Mohlke, Karen L; Balkau, Beverley; Froguel, Philippe; Pouta, Anneli; Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta; Wareham, Nicholas J; Bouatia-Naji, Nabila; McCarthy, Mark I; Franks, Paul W; Meigs, James B; Teslovich, Tanya M; Florez, Jose C; Langenberg, Claudia; Ingelsson, Erik; Prokopenko, Inga; Barroso, Inês

    2012-01-01

    Through genome-wide association meta-analyses of up to 133,010 individuals of European ancestry without diabetes, including individuals newly genotyped using the Metabochip, we have raised the number of confirmed loci influencing glycemic traits to 53, of which 33 also increase type 2 diabetes risk (q fasting insulin showed association with lipid levels and fat distribution, suggesting impact on insulin resistance. Gene-based analyses identified further biologically plausible loci, suggesting that additional loci beyond those reaching genome-wide significance are likely to represent real associations. This conclusion is supported by an excess of directionally consistent and nominally significant signals between discovery and follow-up studies. Functional follow-up of these newly discovered loci will further improve our understanding of glycemic control. PMID:22885924

  2. Of paradox and plausibility: the dynamic of change in medical law.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrington, John

    2014-01-01

    This article develops a model of change in medical law. Drawing on systems theory, it argues that medical law participates in a dynamic of 'deparadoxification' and 'reparadoxification' whereby the underlying contingency of the law is variously concealed through plausible argumentation, or revealed by critical challenge. Medical law is, thus, thoroughly rhetorical. An examination of the development of the law on abortion and on the sterilization of incompetent adults shows that plausibility is achieved through the deployment of substantive common sense and formal stylistic devices. It is undermined where these elements are shown to be arbitrary and constructed. In conclusion, it is argued that the politics of medical law are constituted by this antagonistic process of establishing and challenging provisionally stable normative regimes. © The Author [2014]. Published by Oxford University Press; all rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  3. Stochastic noncooperative and cooperative evolutionary game strategies of a population of biological networks under natural selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bor-Sen; Yeh, Chin-Hsun

    2017-12-01

    We review current static and dynamic evolutionary game strategies of biological networks and discuss the lack of random genetic variations and stochastic environmental disturbances in these models. To include these factors, a population of evolving biological networks is modeled as a nonlinear stochastic biological system with Poisson-driven genetic variations and random environmental fluctuations (stimuli). To gain insight into the evolutionary game theory of stochastic biological networks under natural selection, the phenotypic robustness and network evolvability of noncooperative and cooperative evolutionary game strategies are discussed from a stochastic Nash game perspective. The noncooperative strategy can be transformed into an equivalent multi-objective optimization problem and is shown to display significantly improved network robustness to tolerate genetic variations and buffer environmental disturbances, maintaining phenotypic traits for longer than the cooperative strategy. However, the noncooperative case requires greater effort and more compromises between partly conflicting players. Global linearization is used to simplify the problem of solving nonlinear stochastic evolutionary games. Finally, a simple stochastic evolutionary model of a metabolic pathway is simulated to illustrate the procedure of solving for two evolutionary game strategies and to confirm and compare their respective characteristics in the evolutionary process. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Generation of Plausible Hurricane Tracks for Preparedness Exercises

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-04-25

    product kernel. KDE with a beta kernel gene- rates maximum sustained winds, and linear regression simulates minimum central pressure. Maximum significant...the Storm level models the number of waypoints M , birth and death locations w1 and wM , and total number of steps L. The Stage level models the...MATLAB and leverages HURDAT2 to construct data-driven statistical models that can generate plausible yet never-before-seen storm behaviors. For a

  5. Credibility judgments of narratives: language, plausibility, and absorption.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nahari, Galit; Glicksohn, Joseph; Nachson, Israel

    2010-01-01

    Two experiments were conducted in order to find out whether textual features of narratives differentially affect credibility judgments made by judges having different levels of absorption (a disposition associated with rich visual imagination). Participants in both experiments were exposed to a textual narrative and requested to judge whether the narrator actually experienced the event he described in his story. In Experiment 1, the narrative varied in terms of language (literal, figurative) and plausibility (ordinary, anomalous). In Experiment 2, the narrative varied in terms of language only. The participants' perceptions of the plausibility of the story described and the extent to which they were absorbed in reading were measured. The data from both experiments together suggest that the groups applied entirely different criteria in credibility judgments. For high-absorption individuals, their credibility judgment depends on the degree to which the text can be assimilated into their own vivid imagination, whereas for low-absorption individuals it depends mainly on plausibility. That is, high-absorption individuals applied an experiential mental set while judging the credibility of the narrator, whereas low-absorption individuals applied an instrumental mental set. Possible cognitive mechanisms and implications for credibility judgments are discussed.

  6. Towards biologically conformal radiation therapy (BCRT): Selective IMRT dose escalation under the guidance of spatial biology distribution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yang Yong; Xing Lei

    2005-01-01

    It is well known that the spatial biology distribution (e.g., clonogen density, radiosensitivity, tumor proliferation rate, functional importance) in most tumors and sensitive structures is heterogeneous. Recent progress in biological imaging is making the mapping of this distribution increasingly possible. The purpose of this work is to establish a theoretical framework to quantitatively incorporate the spatial biology data into intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) inverse planning. In order to implement this, we first derive a general formula for determining the desired dose to each tumor voxel for a known biology distribution of the tumor based on a linear-quadratic model. The desired target dose distribution is then used as the prescription for inverse planning. An objective function with the voxel-dependent prescription is constructed with incorporation of the nonuniform dose prescription. The functional unit density distribution in a sensitive structure is also considered phenomenologically when constructing the objective function. Two cases with different hypothetical biology distributions are used to illustrate the new inverse planning formalism. For comparison, treatments with a few uniform dose prescriptions and a simultaneous integrated boost are also planned. The biological indices, tumor control probability (TCP) and normal tissue complication probability (NTCP), are calculated for both types of plans and the superiority of the proposed technique over the conventional dose escalation scheme is demonstrated. Our calculations revealed that it is technically feasible to produce deliberately nonuniform dose distributions with consideration of biological information. Compared with the conventional dose escalation schemes, the new technique is capable of generating biologically conformal IMRT plans that significantly improve the TCP while reducing or keeping the NTCPs at their current levels. Biologically conformal radiation therapy (BCRT

  7. Biological iron oxidation by Gallionella spp. in drinking water production under fully aerated conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Vet, W W J M; Dinkla, I J T; Rietveld, L C; van Loosdrecht, M C M

    2011-11-01

    Iron oxidation under neutral conditions (pH 6.5-8) may be a homo- or heterogeneous chemically- or a biologically-mediated process. The chemical oxidation is supposed to outpace the biological process under slightly alkaline conditions (pH 7-8). The iron oxidation kinetics and growth of Gallionella spp. - obligatory chemolithotrophic iron oxidizers - were assessed in natural, organic carbon-containing water, in continuous lab-scale reactors and full-scale groundwater trickling filters in the Netherlands. From Gallionella cell numbers determined by qPCR, balances were made for all systems. The homogeneous chemical iron oxidation occurred in accordance with the literature, but was retarded by a low water temperature (13 °C). The contribution of the heterogeneous chemical oxidation was, despite the presence of freshly formed iron oxyhydroxides, much lower than in previous studies in ultrapure water. This could be caused by the adsorption of natural organic matter (NOM) on the iron oxide surfaces. In the oxygen-saturated natural water with a pH ranging from 6.5 to 7.7, Gallionella spp. grew uninhibited and biological iron oxidation was an important, and probably the dominant, process. Gallionella growth was not even inhibited in a full-scale filter after plate aeration. From this we conclude that Gallionella spp. can grow under neutral pH and fully aerated conditions when the chemical iron oxidation is retarded by low water temperature and inhibition of the autocatalytic iron oxidation. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. N-Cadherin Maintains the Healthy Biology of Nucleus Pulposus Cells under High-Magnitude Compression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhenyu; Leng, Jiali; Zhao, Yuguang; Yu, Dehai; Xu, Feng; Song, Qingxu; Qu, Zhigang; Zhuang, Xinming; Liu, Yi

    2017-01-01

    Mechanical load can regulate disc nucleus pulposus (NP) biology in terms of cell viability, matrix homeostasis and cell phenotype. N-cadherin (N-CDH) is a molecular marker of NP cells. This study investigated the role of N-CDH in maintaining NP cell phenotype, NP matrix synthesis and NP cell viability under high-magnitude compression. Rat NP cells seeded on scaffolds were perfusion-cultured using a self-developed perfusion bioreactor for 5 days. NP cell biology in terms of cell apoptosis, matrix biosynthesis and cell phenotype was studied after the cells were subjected to different compressive magnitudes (low- and high-magnitudes: 2% and 20% compressive deformation, respectively). Non-loaded NP cells were used as controls. Lentivirus-mediated N-CDH overexpression was used to further investigate the role of N-CDH under high-magnitude compression. The 20% deformation compression condition significantly decreased N-CDH expression compared with the 2% deformation compression and control conditions. Meanwhile, 20% deformation compression increased the number of apoptotic NP cells, up-regulated the expression of Bax and cleaved-caspase-3 and down-regulated the expression of Bcl-2, matrix macromolecules (aggrecan and collagen II) and NP cell markers (glypican-3, CAXII and keratin-19) compared with 2% deformation compression. Additionally, N-CDH overexpression attenuated the effects of 20% deformation compression on NP cell biology in relation to the designated parameters. N-CDH helps to restore the cell viability, matrix biosynthesis and cellular phenotype of NP cells under high-magnitude compression. © 2017 The Author(s). Published by S. Karger AG, Basel.

  9. Generation of radicals in hard biological tissues under the action of laser radiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sviridov, Alexander P.; Bagratashvili, Victor N.; Sobol, Emil N.; Omelchenko, Alexander I.; Lunina, Elena V.; Zhitnev, Yurii N.; Markaryan, Galina L.; Lunin, Valerii V.

    2002-07-01

    The formation of radicals upon UV and IR laser irradiation of some biological tissues and their components was studied by the EPR technique. The radical decay kinetics in body tissue specimens after their irradiation with UV light were described by various models. By the spin trapping technique, it was shown that radicals were not produced during IR laser irradiation of cartilaginous tissue. A change in optical absorption spectra and the dynamics of optical density of cartilaginous tissue, fish scale, and a collagen film under exposure to laser radiation in an air, oxygen, and nitrogen atmosphere was studied.

  10. Evaluation of biological attributes of soil type latossol under agroecological production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marisol Rivero Herrada

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Biological soil attributes have shown to be good indicators of soil changes as a result of the management function. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of using cover crops, as well as planting and tillage systems on the biological attributes of a yellowish red latosol soil. Soil samples were taken at 0 to 0.10 m depth, seven days before the bean harvest. Microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen, basal soil respiration, metabolic ratio and total enzyme activity were evaluated in this study. The best agroecological management was achieved under the association of the ground cover with millet and in direct seeding because they showed higher soil microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen content and lower metabolic quotient, being pork bean the best plant coverage. All biological soil attributes were sensitive to the tillage system, which showed the best results of the total enzyme activity and of the soil metabolic quotient which resulted to be the most efficient.

  11. Custom AFM for X-ray beamlines: in situ biological investigations under physiological conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gumí-Audenis, B. [ESRF, The European Synchrotron, Grenoble (France); Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC), Barcelona (Spain); Physical Chemistry Department, Universitat de Barcelona, Barcelona (Spain); Networking Biomedical Research Center on Bioengineering, Biomaterials and Nanomedicine (CIBER-BBN), Madrid (Spain); Carlà, F. [ESRF, The European Synchrotron, Grenoble (France); Vitorino, M. V. [University of Lisboa, Falculty of Science, Biosystems and Integrative Sciences Institute - BIOISI, Lisbon (Portugal); Panzarella, A. [ESRF, The European Synchrotron, Grenoble (France); Porcar, L. [Institut Laue-Langevin, Grenoble (France); Boilot, M. [ORTEC, Marseille (France); Guerber, S. [CEA, LETI Grenoble (France); Bernard, P. [ESRF, The European Synchrotron, Grenoble (France); Rodrigues, M. S. [University of Lisboa, Falculty of Science, Biosystems and Integrative Sciences Institute - BIOISI, Lisbon (Portugal); Sanz, F.; Giannotti, M. I. [Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC), Barcelona (Spain); Physical Chemistry Department, Universitat de Barcelona, Barcelona (Spain); Networking Biomedical Research Center on Bioengineering, Biomaterials and Nanomedicine (CIBER-BBN), Madrid (Spain); Costa, L., E-mail: luca.costa@esrf.fr [ESRF, The European Synchrotron, Grenoble (France)

    2015-09-30

    The performance of a custom atomic force microscope for grazing-incidence X-ray experiments on hydrated soft and biological samples is presented. A fast atomic force microscope (AFM) has been developed that can be installed as a sample holder for grazing-incidence X-ray experiments at solid/gas or solid/liquid interfaces. It allows a wide range of possible investigations, including soft and biological samples under physiological conditions (hydrated specimens). The structural information obtained using the X-rays is combined with the data gathered with the AFM (morphology and mechanical properties), providing a unique characterization of the specimen and its dynamics in situ during an experiment. In this work, lipid monolayers and bilayers in air or liquid environment have been investigated by means of AFM, both with imaging and force spectroscopy, and X-ray reflectivity. In addition, this combination allows the radiation damage induced by the beam on the sample to be studied, as has been observed on DOPC and DPPC supported lipid bilayers under physiological conditions.

  12. Plausibility of stromal initiation of epithelial cancers without a mutation in the epithelium: a computer simulation of morphostats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cappuccio Antonio

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is experimental evidence from animal models favoring the notion that the disruption of interactions between stroma and epithelium plays an important role in the initiation of carcinogenesis. These disrupted interactions are hypothesized to be mediated by molecules, termed morphostats, which diffuse through the tissue to determine cell phenotype and maintain tissue architecture. Methods We developed a computer simulation based on simple properties of cell renewal and morphostats. Results Under the computer simulation, the disruption of the morphostat gradient in the stroma generated epithelial precursors of cancer without any mutation in the epithelium. Conclusion The model is consistent with the possibility that the accumulation of genetic and epigenetic changes found in tumors could arise after the formation of a founder population of aberrant cells, defined as cells that are created by low or insufficient morphostat levels and that no longer respond to morphostat concentrations. Because the model is biologically plausible, we hope that these results will stimulate further experiments.

  13. Designing and testing a classroom curriculum to teach preschoolers about the biology of physical activity: The respiration system as an underlying biological causal mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewing, Tracy S.

    The present study examined young children's understanding of respiration and oxygen as a source of vital energy underlying physical activity. Specifically, the purpose of the study was to explore whether a coherent biological theory, characterized by an understanding that bodily parts (heart and lungs) and processes (oxygen in respiration) as part of a biological system, can be taught as a foundational concept to reason about physical activity. The effects of a biology-based intervention curriculum designed to teach preschool children about bodily functions as a part of the respiratory system, the role of oxygen as a vital substance and how physical activity acts an energy source were examined. Participants were recruited from three private preschool classrooms (two treatment; 1 control) in Southern California and included a total of 48 four-year-old children (30 treatment; 18 control). Findings from this study suggested that young children could be taught relevant biological concepts about the role of oxygen in respiratory processes. Children who received biology-based intervention curriculum made significant gains in their understanding of the biology of respiration, identification of physical and sedentary activities. In addition these children demonstrated that coherence of conceptual knowledge was correlated with improved accuracy at activity identification and reasoning about the inner workings of the body contributing to endurance. Findings from this study provided evidence to support the benefits of providing age appropriate but complex coherent biological instruction to children in early childhood settings.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, Sandeep

    2014-08-01

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

  15. Heavy-ion radiobiology: new approaches to delineate mechanisms underlying enhanced biological effectiveness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blakely, E. A.; Kronenberg, A.; Chatterjee, A. (Principal Investigator)

    1998-01-01

    Shortly after the discovery of polonium and radium by Marie Curie and her husband and colleague, Pierre Curie, it was learned that exposure to these alpha-particle emitters produced deleterious biological effects. The mechanisms underlying the increased biological effectiveness of densely ionizing radiations, including alpha particles, neutrons and highly energetic heavy charged particles, remain an active area of investigation. In this paper, we review recent advances in several areas of the radiobiology of these densely ionizing radiations, also known as heavy ions. Advances are described in the areas of DNA damage and repair, chromosome aberrations, mutagenesis, neoplastic transformation in vitro, genomic instability, normal tissue radiobiology and carcinogenesis in vivo. We focus on technical innovations, including novel applications of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), linkage analysis, and studies of gene expression and protein expression. We also highlight the use of new cellular and animal systems, including those with defined DNA repair deficiencies, as well as epithelial cell model systems to assess neoplastic transformation both in vitro and in vivo. The studies reviewed herein have had a substantial impact on our understanding of the genotoxic effects of heavy ions as well as their distinct effects on tissue homeostasis. The use of these radiations in cancer therapy is also discussed. The use of both heavy-ion and proton therapy is on the upswing in several centers around the world, due to their unique energy deposition characteristics that enhance the therapeutic effect and help reduce damage to normal tissue.

  16. The biology and polymer physics underlying large-scale chromosome organization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sazer, Shelley; Schiessel, Helmut

    2018-02-01

    Chromosome large-scale organization is a beautiful example of the interplay between physics and biology. DNA molecules are polymers and thus belong to the class of molecules for which physicists have developed models and formulated testable hypotheses to understand their arrangement and dynamic properties in solution, based on the principles of polymer physics. Biologists documented and discovered the biochemical basis for the structure, function and dynamic spatial organization of chromosomes in cells. The underlying principles of chromosome organization have recently been revealed in unprecedented detail using high-resolution chromosome capture technology that can simultaneously detect chromosome contact sites throughout the genome. These independent lines of investigation have now converged on a model in which DNA loops, generated by the loop extrusion mechanism, are the basic organizational and functional units of the chromosome. © 2017 The Authors. Traffic published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Biological control of white mold by Trichoderma harzianum in common bean under field conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Diego Costa Carvalho

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract: The objective of this work was to evaluate Trichoderma harzianum isolates for biological control of white mold in common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris. Five isolates were evaluated for biocontrol of white mold in 'Perola' common bean under field conditions, in the 2009 and 2010 crop seasons. A commercial isolate (1306 and a control treatment were included. Foliar applications at 2x109 conidia mL-1 were performed at 42 and 52 days after sowing (DAS, in 2009, and at 52 DAS in 2010. The CEN287, CEN316, and 1306 isolates decreased the number of Sclerotinia sclerotiorum apothecia per square meter in comparison to the control, in both crop seasons. CEN287, CEN316, and 1306 decreased white mold severity during the experimental period, when compared to the control.

  18. Biological reductive dechlorination of tetrachloroethylene and trichloroethylene to ethylene under methanogenic conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Freedman, D.L.; Gossett, J.M.

    1989-01-01

    A biological process for remediation of groundwater contaminated with tetrachloroethylene (PCE) and trichloroethylene (TCE) can only be applied if the transformation products are environmentally acceptable. Studies with enrichment cultures of PCE- and TCE-degrading microorganisms provide evidence that, under methanogenic conditions, mixed cultures are able to completely dechlorinate PCE and TCE to ethylene, a product which is environmentally acceptable. Radiotracer studies with [ 14 C]PCE indicated that [ 14 C]ethylene was the terminal product; significant conversion to 14 CO 2 or 14 CH 4 was not observed. The rate-limiting step in the pathway appeared to be conversion of vinyl chloride to ethylene. To sustain reductive dechlorination of PCE and TCE, it was necessary to supply an electron donor; methanol was the most effective, although hydrogen, formate, acetate, and glucose also served. Studies with the inhibitor 2-bromoethanesulfonate suggested that methanogens played a key role in the observed biotransformations of PCE and TCE

  19. Single-dose relative biological effectiveness and toxicity studies under conditions of hypothermia and hyperbaric oxygen

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hering, E.R.; Blekkenhorst, G.; Harrison, G.G.; Morrell, D.; Korrubel, J.; Gregory, A.; Phillips, J.; Manca, V.; Sealy, R.; Cape Town Univ.

    1986-01-01

    An approach to using hyperbaric oxygen with radiation in a clinical situation has been described in the preceding paper in this issue. To ascertain whether there might be a change in the relative biological effectiveness of radiation on normal mammalian tissue treated under conditions of hypothermia and hyperbaric oxygen, the acute reaction to radiation of pig skin was studied. A single dose enhancement ratio at the erythema reaction level of 1.4+-0.08 was obtained when compared with irradiation at normal body temperature in air. The authors studied also a series of antioxidant enzymes in rat liver and lung after exposure to hypothermia and hyperbaric oxygen. Enzyme changes were such as to combat oxygen toxicity which might develop as a result of the pre-treatment. (author)

  20. Dynamics of Intracellular Polymers in Enhanced Biological Phosphorus Removal Processes under Different Organic Carbon Concentrations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lizhen Xing

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR may deteriorate or fail during low organic carbon loading periods. Polyphosphate accumulating organisms (PAOs in EBPR were acclimated under both high and low organic carbon conditions, and then dynamics of polymers in typical cycles, anaerobic conditions with excess organic carbons, and endogenous respiration conditions were examined. After long-term acclimation, it was found that organic loading rates did not affect the yield of PAOs and the applied low organic carbon concentrations were advantageous for the enrichment of PAOs. A low influent organic carbon concentration induced a high production of extracellular carbohydrate. During both anaerobic and aerobic endogenous respirations, when glycogen decreased to around 80 ± 10 mg C per gram of volatile suspended solids, PAOs began to utilize polyphosphate significantly. Regressed by the first-order reaction model, glycogen possessed the highest degradation rate and then was followed by polyphosphate, while biomass decay had the lowest degradation rate.

  1. N deposition as a threat to the World's protected areas under the Convention on Biological Diversity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bleeker, A.; Hicks, W.K.; Dentener, F.; Galloway, J.; Erisman, J.W.

    2011-01-01

    This paper combines the world's protected areas (PAs) under the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), common classification systems of ecosystem conservation status, and current knowledge on ecosystem responses to nitrogen (N) deposition to determine areas most at risk. The results show that 40% (approx. 11% of total area) of PAs currently receive >10 kg N/ha/yr with projections for 2030 indicating that this situation is not expected to change. Furthermore, 950 PAs are projected to receive >30 kg N/ha/yr by 2030 (approx. twice the 2000 number), of which 62 (approx. 11,300 km 2 ) are also Biodiversity Hotspots and G200 ecoregions; with forest and grassland ecosystems in Asia particularly at risk. Many of these sites are known to be sensitive to N deposition effects, both in terms of biodiversity changes and ecosystem services they provide. Urgent assessment of high risk areas identified in this study is recommended to inform the conservation efforts of the CBD. - Highlights: → Significant areas of the Protected Areas Programme under the CBD will likely be under threat of high N deposition levels by the year 2030.→ Approx. 950 PAs are projected to receive N deposition levels of more than 30 kg N/ha/yr by 2030.→ 62 of these sites are also Biodiversity Hotspots and G200 ecoregions, where forest and grassland ecosystems in Asia will be particularly at risk.→ Many of these sites are known to be sensitive to N deposition effects, both in terms of biodiversity changes and ecosystem services they provide → Urgent assessment of high risk areas identified in this study is recommended to inform the conservation efforts of the CBD. - Significant areas of the UNEP Protected Areas Programme under the CBD receive high N deposition rates that are likely to increase in the future, especially in Asia, and may pose a significant threat to biodiversity.

  2. The ethical plausibility of the 'Right To Try' laws.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrieri, D; Peccatori, F A; Boniolo, G

    2018-02-01

    'Right To Try' (RTT) laws originated in the USA to allow terminally ill patients to request access to early stage experimental medical products directly from the producer, removing the oversight and approval of the Food and Drug Administration. These laws have received significant media attention and almost equally unanimous criticism by the bioethics, clinical and scientific communities. They touch indeed on complex issues such as the conflict between individual and public interest, and the public understanding of medical research and its regulation. The increased awareness around RTT laws means that healthcare providers directly involved in the management of patients with life-threatening conditions such as cancer, infective, or neurologic conditions will deal more frequently with patients' requests of access to experimental medical products. This paper aims to assess the ethical plausibility of the RTT laws, and to suggest some possible ethical tools and considerations to address the main issues they touch. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Plausible scenarios for the radiography profession in Sweden in 2025

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Björkman, B.; Fridell, K.; Tavakol Olofsson, P.

    2017-01-01

    Introduction: Radiography is a healthcare speciality with many technical challenges. Advances in engineering and information technology applications may continue to drive and be driven by radiographers. The world of diagnostic imaging is changing rapidly and radiographers must be proactive in order to survive. To ensure sustainable development, organisations have to identify future opportunities and threats in a timely manner and incorporate them into their strategic planning. Hence, the aim of this study was to analyse and describe plausible scenarios for the radiography profession in 2025. Method: The study has a qualitative design with an inductive approach based on focus group interviews. The interviews were inspired by the Scenario-Planning method. Results: Of the seven trends identified in a previous study, the radiographers considered two as the most uncertain scenarios that would have the greatest impact on the profession should they occur. These trends, labelled “Access to career advancement” and “A sufficient number of radiographers”, were inserted into the scenario cross. The resulting four plausible future scenarios were: The happy radiographer, the specialist radiographer, the dying profession and the assembly line. Conclusion: It is suggested that “The dying profession” scenario could probably be turned in the opposite direction by facilitating career development opportunities for radiographers within the profession. Changing the direction would probably lead to a profession composed of “happy radiographers” who are specialists, proud of their profession and competent to carry out advanced tasks, in contrast to being solely occupied by “the assembly line”. - Highlights: • The world of radiography is changing rapidly and radiographers must be proactive in order to survive. • Future opportunities and threats should be identified and incorporated into the strategic planning. • Appropriate actions can probably change the

  4. Biological treatment of refinery spent caustics under halo-alkaline conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Graaff, Marco; Bijmans, Martijn F M; Abbas, Ben; Euverink, Gert-J W; Muyzer, Gerard; Janssen, Albert J H

    2011-08-01

    The present research demonstrates the biological treatment of refinery sulfidic spent caustics in a continuously fed system under halo-alkaline conditions (i.e. pH 9.5; Na(+)= 0.8M). Experiments were performed in identical gas-lift bioreactors operated under aerobic conditions (80-90% saturation) at 35°C. Sulfide loading rates up to 27 mmol L(-1)day(-1) were successfully applied at a HRT of 3.5 days. Sulfide was completely converted into sulfate by the haloalkaliphilic sulfide-oxidizing bacteria belonging to the genus Thioalkalivibrio. Influent benzene concentrations ranged from 100 to 600 μM. At steady state, benzene was removed by 93% due to high stripping efficiencies and biodegradation. Microbial community analysis revealed the presence of haloalkaliphilic heterotrophic bacteria belonging to the genera Marinobacter, Halomonas and Idiomarina which might have been involved in the observed benzene removal. The work shows the potential of halo-alkaliphilic bacteria in mitigating environmental problems caused by alkaline waste. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Source-sink interaction: a century old concept under the light of modern molecular systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Tian-Gen; Zhu, Xin-Guang; Raines, Christine

    2017-07-20

    Many approaches to engineer source strength have been proposed to enhance crop yield potential. However, a well-co-ordinated source-sink relationship is required finally to realize the promised increase in crop yield potential in the farmer's field. Source-sink interaction has been intensively studied for decades, and a vast amount of knowledge about the interaction in different crops and under different environments has been accumulated. In this review, we first introduce the basic concepts of source, sink and their interactions, then summarize current understanding of how source and sink can be manipulated through both environmental control and genetic manipulations. We show that the source-sink interaction underlies the diverse responses of crops to the same perturbations and argue that development of a molecular systems model of source-sink interaction is required towards a rational manipulation of the source-sink relationship for increased yield. We finally discuss both bottom-up and top-down routes to develop such a model and emphasize that a community effort is needed for development of this model. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  6. Neurodevelopmental consequences in offspring of mothers with preeclampsia during pregnancy: underlying biological mechanism via imprinting genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nomura, Yoko; John, Rosalind M; Janssen, Anna Bugge; Davey, Charles; Finik, Jackie; Buthmann, Jessica; Glover, Vivette; Lambertini, Luca

    2017-06-01

    Preeclampsia is known to be a leading cause of mortality and morbidity among mothers and their infants. Approximately 3-8% of all pregnancies in the US are complicated by preeclampsia and another 5-7% by hypertensive symptoms. However, less is known about its long-term influence on infant neurobehavioral development. The current review attempts to demonstrate new evidence for imprinting gene dysregulation caused by hypertension, which may explain the link between maternal preeclampsia and neurocognitive dysregulation in offspring. Pub Med and Web of Science databases were searched using the terms "preeclampsia," "gestational hypertension," "imprinting genes," "imprinting dysregulation," and "epigenetic modification," in order to review the evidence demonstrating associations between preeclampsia and suboptimal child neurodevelopment, and suggest dysregulation of placental genomic imprinting as a potential underlying mechanism. The high mortality and morbidity among mothers and fetuses due to preeclampsia is well known, but there is little research on the long-term biological consequences of preeclampsia and resulting hypoxia on the fetal/child neurodevelopment. In the past decade, accumulating evidence from studies that transcend disciplinary boundaries have begun to show that imprinted genes expressed in the placenta might hold clues for a link between preeclampsia and impaired cognitive neurodevelopment. A sudden onset of maternal hypertension detected by the placenta may result in misguided biological programming of the fetus via changes in the epigenome, resulting in suboptimal infant development. Furthering our understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms through which neurodevelopmental trajectories of the fetus/infant are affected by preeclampsia and hypertension will represent an important first step toward preventing adverse neurodevelopment in infants.

  7. Competing for phosphors under changing redox conditions: biological versus geochemical sinks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gross, A.; Pett-Ridge, J.; Silver, W. L.

    2016-12-01

    Competing for phosphorus under changing redox conditions: biological versus geochemical sinksAvner Gross1, Jennifer Pett-Ridge2 and Whendee L Silver1 University of California Berkeley, Department of Environmental Science, Policy, & Management, Berkeley, CA, USA. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Physical and Life Science Directorate, Livermore, CA, USA. The cycling of phosphorous (P) in highly weathered, humid tropical forest soils is tightly regulated by P sorption dynamics to the surfaces of Fe(III) (hydr)oxides and root and microbial demands for P. Periods of anoxic soil conditions, which are common in humid environments, induce the reduction of Fe (III) to Fe (II) and may release sorbed P into the soil solution. The microbial demand for P is influenced by the C and nutrient composition of their available substrates. Therefore, we hypothesize that soil redox conditions and substrate quality and availability will control the partitioning of P between microbial biomass and the soil mineral phase. The aim of this study was to examine how fluctuations in soil redox conditions and changes in microbial P demand affect the fate of new P that enters the soil solution. To achieve this aim we conducted a series of soil incubation experiments using a wet tropical soil from Puerto Rico (where redox conditions and P availability naturally oscillate) with a single pulse of phosphate (PO4), altering both the microbial activity and redox conditions. To follow the fate the added P, the added phosphate was labeled with 18O. As the exchange of oxygen between phosphate and water only occurs during biological processes, P-18O labeling can be used as an indicator of microbial use. To quantify sizes of the microbial and mineral P pools we used traditional chemical extractions in the bulk scale. We used NanoSIMS isotopic imaging to map the distribution of P-16O and P-18O and co-localization with Fe minerals at the nano scale. Our results show that the amount of the added P fixed

  8. Improvement of Chickpea Growth and Biological N Fixation under Water Salinity Stress

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gadalla, A. M.; Galal, Y. G. M.; Hamdy, A.

    2004-01-01

    This work had been carried out under greenhouse conditions of IAM-Bari, aimed at evaluating the effects of water and soil salinity on growth, yield and nitrogen fixation by chickpea plants inoculated with selected Rhizobium strains. Isotope dilution approach ( 15 N) was applied for quantification of biological N fixation and portions derived from fertilizer and soil (Ndff and Ndfs, respectively). Number of pods was decreased gradually with increasing water salinity levels. High levels of salinity negatively affected shoot, root dry matter, seed yield and N accumulated in shoots and roots. A slight difference in seed N was noticed between fresh water and 9 dS/m treatments. Nitrogen derived from fertilizer by shoots was slightly increased with 3, 6 and 9 dS/m treatments, while they were notably higher than the fresh water control. More than 80% and 70% of N accumulated in shoots and seeds, respectively were derived from fixation. Portions of N 2 -fixed in shoots was decreased with the level of 3 dS/m as compared to the fresh water, then tended to increase with both 6 and 9 dS/m treatments. Stability of %Ndfa with increasing salinity was noticed with seeds-N. Soil-N came next as a fraction of nitrogen demand, where it increased with increasing water salinity levels. Under adverse conditions of salinity, the plants offered some of their N requirements from the other two N sources. Application of the suitable Rhizobium bacteria strains could be profits for both of the plant growth and soil fertility via N 2 fixation. (Authors)

  9. Soil Physical Characteristics and Biological Indicators of Soil Quality Under Different Biodegradable Mulches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaeffer, S. M.; Flury, M.; Sintim, H.; Bandopadhyay, S.; Ghimire, S.; Bary, A.; DeBruyn, J.

    2015-12-01

    Application of conventional polyethylene (PE) mulch in crop production offers benefits of increased water use efficiency, weed control, management of certain plant diseases, and maintenance of a micro-climate conducive for plant growth. These factors improve crop yield and quality, but PE must be retrieved and safely disposed of after usage. Substituting PE with biodegradable plastic mulches (BDM) would alleviate disposal needs, and is potentially a more sustainable practice. However, knowledge of potential impacts of BDMs on agricultural soil ecosystems is needed to evaluate sustainability. We (a) monitored soil moisture and temperature dynamics, and (b) assessed soil quality upon usage of different mulches, with pie pumpkin (Cucurbita pepo) as the test crop. Experimental field trials are ongoing at two sites, one at Northwestern Washington Research and Extension Center, Mount Vernon, WA, and the other at East Tennessee Research and Education Center, Knoxville, TN. The treatments constitute four different commercial BDM products, one experimental BDM; no mulch and PE served as the controls. Soil quality parameters being examined include: organic matter content, aggregate stability, water infiltration rate, CO2 flux, pH, and extracellular enzyme activity. In addition, lysimeters were installed to examine the soil water and heat flow dynamics. We present baseline and the first field season results from this study. Mulch cover appeared to moderate soil temperatures, but biodegradable mulches also appeared to lose water more quickly than PE. All mulch types, with the exception of cellulose, reduced the diurnal fluctuations in soil temperature at 10cm depth from 1 to 4ºC. However, volumetric water content ranged from 0.10 to 0.22 m3 m-3 under the five biodegradable mulches compared to 0.22 to 0.28 m3 m-3 under conventional PE. Results from the study will be useful for management practices by providing knowledge on how different mulches impact soil physical and

  10. Interferometric laser detection of nanomechanical perturbations in biological media under ablation conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morales-Bonilla, S; Torres-Torres, C; Urriolagoitia-Sosa, G; Hernandez-Gomez, L H; Urriolagoitia-Calderon, G, E-mail: crstorres@yahoo.com.mx [Instituto Politecnico Nacional Seccion de Estudios de Posgrado e Investigacion Escuela Superior de Ingenieria Mecanica y Electrica Unidad Profesional Adolfo Lopez Mateos ' Zacatenco' Col. Lindavista, CP 07738, Mexico, D. F. (Mexico)

    2011-07-19

    This article has to do with the development of a reliable and sensitive non-invasive laser technique for assessing damage of structures and systems involved in laser ablation processes. The optical response of a Michelson Interferometer in combination with a Measuring Reflectance System has been analyzed in order to identify the stability of the mechanical properties of the sample, the physical perturbations associated with the systems and the environment where the target is contained. This test includes the use of a cyan laser system with 10 mW at 488 nm wavelength as optical source. We found out that with the inclusion of an optical feedback in a sensing system it is possible to determine the modification of the physical properties exhibited by a biological medium under sharp ablation conditions with a high accuracy degree. The results reported in this research have potential applications related to the amount of light intensity that can be tolerated by human tissue. A wide array of disciplines, such as medicine, mechanical industry and optical instrumentation can benefit from this ultrafast optical feedback for controlling high intensity laser signals. Collateral damage of tissue around the laser irradiated zones can be reduced by using intelligent lasers systems with ultra-short temporal response.

  11. Biology and bionomics of dysdercus koenigii f. (hemiptera: pyrrhocoridae) under laboratory conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jaleel, W.; Naqqash, M.N.

    2013-01-01

    Red Cotton Bug, Dysdercus koenigii F., (Hemiptera: Pyrrhocoridae) is an important pest of cotton in South East Asia. Studies were carried out during 2012 to find the effect of temperature on incubation period and to explore the reproductive biology and bionomics of D. koenigii under laboratory conditions. Minimum incubation period (4.70+-0.42 days) was recorded at 35 degree C while the eggs failed to hatch at 40 degree C at 70-75% relative humidity. There were five nymphal instars which completed their development in 23.42+-2.49 days. The female lived longer (20.85+-6.12 days) than the male (16.18+-6.06 days). Each female mated three times in her life and there was statistically significant difference in mating duration (days), number of eggs laid and hatching percentage in each mating time. Number of eggs and hatching percentage was significantly higher after 1st time mating followed by 2nd and 3rd time matings. Duration of pre-oviposition, oviposition and post oviposition period recorded was 7.47+-0.86, 12.43+-0.82 and 8.77+-2.41 days, respectively. The study will help in devising pest management strategy against D. koenigii. (author)

  12. Interferometric laser detection of nanomechanical perturbations in biological media under ablation conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morales-Bonilla, S; Torres-Torres, C; Urriolagoitia-Sosa, G; Hernandez-Gomez, L H; Urriolagoitia-Calderon, G

    2011-01-01

    This article has to do with the development of a reliable and sensitive non-invasive laser technique for assessing damage of structures and systems involved in laser ablation processes. The optical response of a Michelson Interferometer in combination with a Measuring Reflectance System has been analyzed in order to identify the stability of the mechanical properties of the sample, the physical perturbations associated with the systems and the environment where the target is contained. This test includes the use of a cyan laser system with 10 mW at 488 nm wavelength as optical source. We found out that with the inclusion of an optical feedback in a sensing system it is possible to determine the modification of the physical properties exhibited by a biological medium under sharp ablation conditions with a high accuracy degree. The results reported in this research have potential applications related to the amount of light intensity that can be tolerated by human tissue. A wide array of disciplines, such as medicine, mechanical industry and optical instrumentation can benefit from this ultrafast optical feedback for controlling high intensity laser signals. Collateral damage of tissue around the laser irradiated zones can be reduced by using intelligent lasers systems with ultra-short temporal response.

  13. Interferometric laser detection of nanomechanical perturbations in biological media under ablation conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales-Bonilla, S.; Torres-Torres, C.; Urriolagoitia-Sosa, G.; Hernández-Gómez, L. H.; Urriolagoitia-Calderón, G.

    2011-07-01

    This article has to do with the development of a reliable and sensitive non-invasive laser technique for assessing damage of structures and systems involved in laser ablation processes. The optical response of a Michelson Interferometer in combination with a Measuring Reflectance System has been analyzed in order to identify the stability of the mechanical properties of the sample, the physical perturbations associated with the systems and the environment where the target is contained. This test includes the use of a cyan laser system with 10 mW at 488 nm wavelength as optical source. We found out that with the inclusion of an optical feedback in a sensing system it is possible to determine the modification of the physical properties exhibited by a biological medium under sharp ablation conditions with a high accuracy degree. The results reported in this research have potential applications related to the amount of light intensity that can be tolerated by human tissue. A wide array of disciplines, such as medicine, mechanical industry and optical instrumentation can benefit from this ultrafast optical feedback for controlling high intensity laser signals. Collateral damage of tissue around the laser irradiated zones can be reduced by using intelligent lasers systems with ultra-short temporal response.

  14. Why the long face? The importance of vertical image structure for biological "barcodes" underlying face recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spence, Morgan L; Storrs, Katherine R; Arnold, Derek H

    2014-07-29

    Humans are experts at face recognition. The mechanisms underlying this complex capacity are not fully understood. Recently, it has been proposed that face recognition is supported by a coarse-scale analysis of visual information contained in horizontal bands of contrast distributed along the vertical image axis-a biological facial "barcode" (Dakin & Watt, 2009). A critical prediction of the facial barcode hypothesis is that the distribution of image contrast along the vertical axis will be more important for face recognition than image distributions along the horizontal axis. Using a novel paradigm involving dynamic image distortions, a series of experiments are presented examining famous face recognition impairments from selectively disrupting image distributions along the vertical or horizontal image axes. Results show that disrupting the image distribution along the vertical image axis is more disruptive for recognition than matched distortions along the horizontal axis. Consistent with the facial barcode hypothesis, these results suggest that human face recognition relies disproportionately on appropriately scaled distributions of image contrast along the vertical image axis. © 2014 ARVO.

  15. Plausible inference: A multi-valued logic for problem solving

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedman, L.

    1979-01-01

    A new logic is developed which permits continuously variable strength of belief in the truth of assertions. Four inference rules result, with formal logic as a limiting case. Quantification of belief is defined. Propagation of belief to linked assertions results from dependency-based techniques of truth maintenance so that local consistency is achieved or contradiction discovered in problem solving. Rules for combining, confirming, or disconfirming beliefs are given, and several heuristics are suggested that apply to revising already formed beliefs in the light of new evidence. The strength of belief that results in such revisions based on conflicting evidence are a highly subjective phenomenon. Certain quantification rules appear to reflect an orderliness in the subjectivity. Several examples of reasoning by plausible inference are given, including a legal example and one from robot learning. Propagation of belief takes place in directions forbidden in formal logic and this results in conclusions becoming possible for a given set of assertions that are not reachable by formal logic.

  16. Liderazgo preventivo para la universidad. Una experiencia plausible

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alejandro Rodríguez Rodríguez

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available El desarrollo del liderazgo, en el ámbito educativo superior, busca soluciones de aplicación inmediata a contextos en que todo líder se desenvuelve, pero se diluye el sustento teórico-práctico en la formación del líder que posibilite entender los procesos intelectivos durante la toma de decisiones. El paradigma de convergencia entre el método antropológico lonerganiano, la comunidad de aprendizaje vygotskiana y una relectura del sistema preventivo salesiano se presentan como propuesta plausible de formación al liderazgo preventivo entre los diversos actores de una comunidad universitaria. Un estudio de caso de la Universidad Salesiana en México empleando un método mixto de investigación, facilita una relectura del liderazgo desde una óptica preventiva como posibilidad de convergencia en un diálogo interdisciplinar. Los resultados teórico-práctico propuestos y examinados se muestran como herramienta útil para evaluar, enriquecer y renovar la teoría sobre el líder y el desarrollo de liderazgo en las universidades frente a una sociedad globalizada.

  17. In Situ Denitrification and Biological Nitrogen Fixation Under Enhanced Atmospheric Reactive Nitrogen Deposition in UK Peatlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ullah, Sami; Saiz Val, Ernesto; Sgouridis, Fotis; Peichl, Matthias; Nilsson, Mats

    2017-04-01

    Dinitrogen (N2) and nitrous oxide (N2O) losses due to denitrification and biological N2 fixation (BNF) are the most uncertain components of the nitrogen (N) cycle in peatlands under enhanced atmospheric reactive nitrogen (Nr) deposition. This uncertainty hampers our ability to assess the contribution of denitrification to the removal of biologically fixed and/or atmospherically deposited Nr in peatlands. This uncertainty emanates from the difficulty in measuring in situ soil N2 and N2O production and consumption in peatlands. In situ denitrification and its contribution to total N2O flux was measured monthly between April 2013 and October 2014 in peatlands in two UK catchments. An adapted 15N-Gas Flux method1 with low level addition of 15N tracer (0.03 ± 0.005 kg 15N ha-1) was used to measure denitrification and its contribution to net N2O production (DN2O/TN2O). BNF was measured in situ through incubation of selected sphagnum species under 15N2 gas tracer. Denitrification2 varied temporally and averaged 8 kg N-N2 ha-1 y-1. The contribution of denitrification was about 48% to total N2O flux3 of 0.05 kg N ha-1 y-1. Soil moisture, temperature, ecosystem respiration, pH and mineral N content mainly regulated the flux of N2 and N2O. Preliminary results showed suppression of BNF, which was 1.8 to 7 times lower in peatland mosses exposed to ˜15 to 20 kg N ha-1 y-1 Nr deposition in the UK than in peatland mosses in northern Sweden with background Nr deposition. Overall, the contribution of denitrification to Nr removal in the selected peatlands was ˜50% of the annual Nr deposition rates, making these ecosystems vulnerable to chronic N saturation. These results point to a need for a more comprehensive annual BNF measurement to more accurately account for total Nr input into peatlands and its atmospheric loss due to denitrification. References Sgouridis F, Stott A & Ullah S, 2016. Application of the 15N-Gas Flux method for measuring in situ N2 and N2O fluxes due to

  18. THE STUDY OF THE BIOLOGICAL PROPERTIES OF PROBIOTIC LACTOBACILLUS SPP. STRAINS UNDER AEROBIC AND MICROAEROPHILIC CULTIVATION CONDITIONS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Babych E.M.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The biological properties (growth characteristics, adhesive activity and sensitivity to antimicrobial of probiotic Lactobacillus strains were studied under different gas composition of incubation atmosphere. It was found that the number of viable lactobacilli cells in the one dose of investigated probiotic preparations was lower than it was claimed by the manufacturer. Gas composition of incubation atmosphere affects cell viability of probiotic strains. The number of colony forming units of lactobacilli under microaerophilic conditions increased in 1,19-1,33 times as compared with aerobic conditions. It was proved that adhesive activity of probiotic Lactobacillus strains and sensitivity to 2th, 3th, 4th generations of cephalosporins (cefuroxime, cefotaxime, cefepime and tetracyclines (doxycycline also increased under microaerophilic conditions. The changes of the biological properties of lactobacilli under different cultivation conditions require further study for optimization of correction of dysbiotic disorders.

  19. Structure before meaning: sentence processing, plausibility, and subcategorization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kizach, Johannes; Nyvad, Anne Mette; Christensen, Ken Ramshøj

    2013-01-01

    Natural language processing is a fast and automatized process. A crucial part of this process is parsing, the online incremental construction of a syntactic structure. The aim of this study was to test whether a wh-filler extracted from an embedded clause is initially attached as the object of the matrix verb with subsequent reanalysis, and if so, whether the plausibility of such an attachment has an effect on reaction time. Finally, we wanted to examine whether subcategorization plays a role. We used a method called G-Maze to measure response time in a self-paced reading design. The experiments confirmed that there is early attachment of fillers to the matrix verb. When this attachment is implausible, the off-line acceptability of the whole sentence is significantly reduced. The on-line results showed that G-Maze was highly suited for this type of experiment. In accordance with our predictions, the results suggest that the parser ignores (or has no access to information about) implausibility and attaches fillers as soon as possible to the matrix verb. However, the results also show that the parser uses the subcategorization frame of the matrix verb. In short, the parser ignores semantic information and allows implausible attachments but adheres to information about which type of object a verb can take, ensuring that the parser does not make impossible attachments. We argue that the evidence supports a syntactic parser informed by syntactic cues, rather than one guided by semantic cues or one that is blind, or completely autonomous.

  20. Structure before meaning: sentence processing, plausibility, and subcategorization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johannes Kizach

    Full Text Available Natural language processing is a fast and automatized process. A crucial part of this process is parsing, the online incremental construction of a syntactic structure. The aim of this study was to test whether a wh-filler extracted from an embedded clause is initially attached as the object of the matrix verb with subsequent reanalysis, and if so, whether the plausibility of such an attachment has an effect on reaction time. Finally, we wanted to examine whether subcategorization plays a role. We used a method called G-Maze to measure response time in a self-paced reading design. The experiments confirmed that there is early attachment of fillers to the matrix verb. When this attachment is implausible, the off-line acceptability of the whole sentence is significantly reduced. The on-line results showed that G-Maze was highly suited for this type of experiment. In accordance with our predictions, the results suggest that the parser ignores (or has no access to information about implausibility and attaches fillers as soon as possible to the matrix verb. However, the results also show that the parser uses the subcategorization frame of the matrix verb. In short, the parser ignores semantic information and allows implausible attachments but adheres to information about which type of object a verb can take, ensuring that the parser does not make impossible attachments. We argue that the evidence supports a syntactic parser informed by syntactic cues, rather than one guided by semantic cues or one that is blind, or completely autonomous.

  1. RNA synthetic biology inspired from bacteria: construction of transcription attenuators under antisense regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawid, Alexandre; Cayrol, Bastien; Isambert, Hervé

    2009-07-01

    Among all biopolymers, ribonucleic acids or RNA have unique functional versatility, which led to the early suggestion that RNA alone (or a closely related biopolymer) might have once sustained a primitive form of life based on a single type of biopolymer. This has been supported by the demonstration of processive RNA-based replication and the discovery of 'riboswitches' or RNA switches, which directly sense their metabolic environment. In this paper, we further explore the plausibility of this 'RNA world' scenario and show, through synthetic molecular design guided by advanced RNA simulations, that RNA can also perform elementary regulation tasks on its own. We demonstrate that RNA synthetic regulatory modules directly inspired from bacterial transcription attenuators can efficiently activate or repress the expression of other RNA by merely controlling their folding paths 'on the fly' during transcription through simple RNA-RNA antisense interaction. Factors, such as NTP concentration and RNA synthesis rate, affecting the efficiency of this kinetic regulation mechanism are also studied and discussed in the light of evolutionary constraints. Overall, this suggests that direct coupling among synthesis, folding and regulation of RNAs may have enabled the early emergence of autonomous RNA-based regulation networks in absence of both DNA and protein partners.

  2. RNA synthetic biology inspired from bacteria: construction of transcription attenuators under antisense regulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dawid, Alexandre; Cayrol, Bastien; Isambert, Hervé

    2009-01-01

    Among all biopolymers, ribonucleic acids or RNA have unique functional versatility, which led to the early suggestion that RNA alone (or a closely related biopolymer) might have once sustained a primitive form of life based on a single type of biopolymer. This has been supported by the demonstration of processive RNA-based replication and the discovery of 'riboswitches' or RNA switches, which directly sense their metabolic environment. In this paper, we further explore the plausibility of this 'RNA world' scenario and show, through synthetic molecular design guided by advanced RNA simulations, that RNA can also perform elementary regulation tasks on its own. We demonstrate that RNA synthetic regulatory modules directly inspired from bacterial transcription attenuators can efficiently activate or repress the expression of other RNA by merely controlling their folding paths 'on the fly' during transcription through simple RNA–RNA antisense interaction. Factors, such as NTP concentration and RNA synthesis rate, affecting the efficiency of this kinetic regulation mechanism are also studied and discussed in the light of evolutionary constraints. Overall, this suggests that direct coupling among synthesis, folding and regulation of RNAs may have enabled the early emergence of autonomous RNA-based regulation networks in absence of both DNA and protein partners

  3. Physical, chemical, and biological properties of soil under soybean cultivation and at an adjacent rainforest in Amazonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    T.P. Beldini; R.C. Oliveira Junior; Michael Keller; P.B. de Camargo; P.M. Crill; A. Damasceno da Silva; D. Bentes dos Santos; D. Rocha de Oliveira

    2015-01-01

    Land-use change in the Amazon basin has occurred at an accelerated pace during the last decade, and it is important that the effects induced by these changes on soil properties are better understood. This study investigated the chemical, physical, and biological properties of soil in a field under cultivation of soy and rice, and at an adjacent primary rain forest....

  4. Manufacturing and Evaluation of a Biologically Inspired Engineered MAV Wing Compared to the Manduca Sexta Wing Under Simulated Flapping Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-03-24

    and tested under simplified flapping conditions by analyzing ‘frozen’ digital images of the de - formed wing by methods of photogrammetry. This... Rocker System to Biological Flapping Mechanism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49 2.6 PhotoModeler Methods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 2.7 A Word on...126 4.5.3 Residual Calculation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 4.5.4 Orientation Angle Determination (Torsional De

  5. Metastasis in renal cell carcinoma: Biology and implications for therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun Gong

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Although multiple advances have been made in systemic therapy for renal cell carcinoma (RCC, metastatic RCC remains incurable. In the current review, we focus on the underlying biology of RCC and plausible mechanisms of metastasis. We further outline evolving strategies to combat metastasis through adjuvant therapy. Finally, we discuss clinical patterns of metastasis in RCC and how distinct systemic therapy approaches may be considered based on the anatomic location of metastasis.

  6. Nitrogenous Derivatives of Phosphorus and the Origins of Life: Plausible Prebiotic Phosphorylating Agents in Water

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megha Karki

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Phosphorylation under plausible prebiotic conditions continues to be one of the defining issues for the role of phosphorus in the origins of life processes. In this review, we cover the reactions of alternative forms of phosphate, specifically the nitrogenous versions of phosphate (and other forms of reduced phosphorus species from a prebiotic, synthetic organic and biochemistry perspective. The ease with which such amidophosphates or phosphoramidate derivatives phosphorylate a wide variety of substrates suggests that alternative forms of phosphate could have played a role in overcoming the “phosphorylation in water problem”. We submit that serious consideration should be given to the search for primordial sources of nitrogenous versions of phosphate and other versions of phosphorus.

  7. Quantum theory as plausible reasoning applied to data obtained by robust experiments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Raedt, H; Katsnelson, M I; Michielsen, K

    2016-05-28

    We review recent work that employs the framework of logical inference to establish a bridge between data gathered through experiments and their objective description in terms of human-made concepts. It is shown that logical inference applied to experiments for which the observed events are independent and for which the frequency distribution of these events is robust with respect to small changes of the conditions under which the experiments are carried out yields, without introducing any concept of quantum theory, the quantum theoretical description in terms of the Schrödinger or the Pauli equation, the Stern-Gerlach or Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen-Bohm experiments. The extraordinary descriptive power of quantum theory then follows from the fact that it is plausible reasoning, that is common sense, applied to reproducible and robust experimental data. © 2016 The Author(s).

  8. Protein Intake and Muscle Health in Old Age: From Biological Plausibility to Clinical Evidence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesco Landi

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The provision of sufficient amounts of dietary proteins is central to muscle health as it ensures the supply of essential amino acids and stimulates protein synthesis. Older persons, in particular, are at high risk of insufficient protein ingestion. Furthermore, the current recommended dietary allowance for protein (0.8 g/kg/day might be inadequate for maintaining muscle health in older adults, probably as a consequence of “anabolic resistance” in aged muscle. Older individuals therefore need to ingest a greater quantity of protein to maintain muscle function. The quality of protein ingested is also essential to promoting muscle health. Given the role of leucine as the master dietary regulator of muscle protein turnover, the ingestion of protein sources enriched with this essential amino acid, or its metabolite β-hydroxy β-methylbutyrate, is thought to offer the greatest benefit in terms of preservation of muscle mass and function in old age.

  9. On the Biological Plausibility of Grandmother Cells: Implications for Neural Network Theories in Psychology and Neuroscience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowers, Jeffrey S.

    2009-01-01

    A fundamental claim associated with parallel distributed processing (PDP) theories of cognition is that knowledge is coded in a distributed manner in mind and brain. This approach rejects the claim that knowledge is coded in a localist fashion, with words, objects, and simple concepts (e.g. "dog"), that is, coded with their own dedicated…

  10. Cannabis and psychosis: an update on course and biological plausible mechanisms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Linszen, Don; van Amelsvoort, Therese

    2007-01-01

    PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Cannabis use is the most commonly abused illicit substance. Its relation with psychosis remains a topic of debate. Epidemiological studies suggest that cannabis is a component cause accounting for approximately 10% of cases. An increasing number of studies have been published on

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-02-01

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

  12. Detection of Low-order Curves in Images using Biologically-plausible Hardware

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-09-29

    the intersections of iso-eccentricity and iso-polar contours were entered into the computer via a graphics tablet . In regions where there was...functional mri . Cerebral Cortex, 7:181 – 192, 1997. [25] Jacob Feldman. Bayesian contour integration. Perception and Psychophysics, 63:1171 – 1182, 2001. [26

  13. Expanding Kenya's protected areas under the Convention on Biological Diversity to maximize coverage of plant diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scherer, Laura; Curran, Michael; Alvarez, Miguel

    2017-04-01

    Biodiversity is highly valuable and critically threatened by anthropogenic degradation of the natural environment. In response, governments have pledged enhanced protected-area coverage, which requires scarce biological data to identify conservation priorities. To assist this effort, we mapped conservation priorities in Kenya based on maximizing alpha (species richness) and beta diversity (species turnover) of plant communities while minimizing economic costs. We used plant-cover percentages from vegetation surveys of over 2000 plots to build separate models for each type of diversity. Opportunity and management costs were based on literature data and interviews with conservation organizations. Species richness was predicted to be highest in a belt from Lake Turkana through Mount Kenya and in a belt parallel to the coast, and species turnover was predicted to be highest in western Kenya and along the coast. Our results suggest the expanding reserve network should focus on the coast and northeastern provinces of Kenya, where new biological surveys would also fill biological data gaps. Meeting the Convention on Biological Diversity target of 17% terrestrial coverage by 2020 would increase representation of Kenya's plant communities by 75%. However, this would require about 50 times more funds than Kenya has received thus far from the Global Environment Facility. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.

  14. Expression of novel rice gibberellin 2-oxidase gene is under homeostatic regulation by biologically active gibberellins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakai, Miho; Sakamoto, Tomoaki; Saito, Tamio; Matsuoka, Makoto; Tanaka, Hiroshi; Kobayashi, Masatomo

    2003-04-01

    We have cloned two genes for gibberellin (GA) 2-oxidase from rice ( Oryza sativa L.). Expression of OsGA2ox2 was not observed. The other gene, OsGA2ox3, was expressed in every tissue examined and was enhanced by the application of biologically active GA. Recombinant OsGA2ox3 protein catalyzed the metabolism of GA(1) to GA(8) and GA(20) to GA(29)-catabolite. These results indicate that OsGA2ox3 is involved in the homeostatic regulation of the endogenous level of biologically active GA in rice.

  15. Biological armors under impact—effect of keratin coating, and synthetic bio-inspired analogues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Achrai, B; Wagner, H D; Bar-On, B

    2015-01-01

    A number of biological armors, such as turtle shells, consist of a strong exoskeleton covered with a thin keratin coating. The mechanical role upon impact of this keratin coating has surprisingly not been investigated thus far. Low-velocity impact tests on the turtle shell reveal a unique toughening phenomenon attributed to the thin covering keratin layer, the presence of which noticeably improves the fracture energy and shell integrity. Synthetic substrate/coating analogues were subsequently prepared and exhibit an impact behavior similar to the biological ones. The results of the present study may improve our understanding, and even future designs, of impact-tolerant structures. (paper)

  16. A plausible neural circuit for decision making and its formation based on reinforcement learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Hui; Dai, Dawei; Bu, Yijie

    2017-06-01

    A human's, or lower insects', behavior is dominated by its nervous system. Each stable behavior has its own inner steps and control rules, and is regulated by a neural circuit. Understanding how the brain influences perception, thought, and behavior is a central mandate of neuroscience. The phototactic flight of insects is a widely observed deterministic behavior. Since its movement is not stochastic, the behavior should be dominated by a neural circuit. Based on the basic firing characteristics of biological neurons and the neural circuit's constitution, we designed a plausible neural circuit for this phototactic behavior from logic perspective. The circuit's output layer, which generates a stable spike firing rate to encode flight commands, controls the insect's angular velocity when flying. The firing pattern and connection type of excitatory and inhibitory neurons are considered in this computational model. We simulated the circuit's information processing using a distributed PC array, and used the real-time average firing rate of output neuron clusters to drive a flying behavior simulation. In this paper, we also explored how a correct neural decision circuit is generated from network flow view through a bee's behavior experiment based on the reward and punishment feedback mechanism. The significance of this study: firstly, we designed a neural circuit to achieve the behavioral logic rules by strictly following the electrophysiological characteristics of biological neurons and anatomical facts. Secondly, our circuit's generality permits the design and implementation of behavioral logic rules based on the most general information processing and activity mode of biological neurons. Thirdly, through computer simulation, we achieved new understanding about the cooperative condition upon which multi-neurons achieve some behavioral control. Fourthly, this study aims in understanding the information encoding mechanism and how neural circuits achieve behavior control

  17. Assessing the Soil Physiological Potential Using Pedo-Biological Diagnosis Under Minimum-Tillage System and Mineral Fertilization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lazar Bireescu

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The main objective of sustainable agriculture is the protection of environment and natural vegetal and soil resources. Accordingly, the objective of this research was to assess the impact of technological systems by minimum tillage on soil biological activity, using the Pedo-Biological Diagnosis of Soil Resources. Our research was conducted on haplic chernozem from Experimental Station of UASVM of Iasi, Romania, during the seasonal dynamic, to the soybean crop, on unfertilized and fertilized agrofond, using moderate mineral doses (N80P80 as average of 2009–2010 period, under minimum tillage (2x disk, paraplow, chisel compared to conventional (plugging at 20 cm and 30 cm. In the case of soil works with chisel and paraplow without return of furrow, the Pedo-Biological Diagnosis highlights an increase of soil physiological potential, in the both variants (unfertilized and fertilized, unlike the method of alternating the depth of plugging that proved to be ineffective.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  19. Using biological effects tools to define Good Environmental Status under the Marine Strategy Framework Directive

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lyons, B.P.; Thain, J.E.; Hylland, K.; Davis, I.; Vethaak, A.D.

    2010-01-01

    The use of biological effects tools offer enormous potential to meet the challenges outlined by the European Union Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) whereby Member States are required to develop a robust set of tools for defining 11 qualitative descriptors of Good Environmental Status

  20. Elevated temperature altered photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and organic compounds and biological activity in rhizopshere soil under cadmium stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Xia; Zhao, Yonghua; Wang, Wenke; He, Yunhua

    2015-09-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of slightly elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring on photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and on organic compounds and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under cadmium (Cd) stress. Elevated temperature was associated with increased soluble sugars, reducing sugars, starch, and total sugars, and with decreased amino acids in wheat seedlings under Cd stress. Elevated temperature improved total soluble sugars, free amino acids, soluble phenolic acids, and organic acids in rhizosphere soil under Cd stress. The activity of amylase, phenol oxidase, invertase, β-glucosidase, and L-asparaginase in rhizosphere soil was significantly improved by elevated temperature under Cd stress; while cellulase, neutral phosphatase, and urease activity significantly decreased. Elevated temperature significantly improved bacteria, fungi, actinomycetes, and total microorganisms abundance and fluorescein diacetate activity under Cd stress. In conclusion, slightly elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring improved the carbohydrate levels in wheat seedlings and organic compounds and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under Cd stress in the short term. In addition, elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring stimulated available Cd by affecting pH, DOC, phenolic acids, and organic acids in rhizosphere soil, which resulted in the improvement of the Cd uptake by wheat seedlings.

  1. Molecular phenology in plants: in natura systems biology for the comprehensive understanding of seasonal responses under natural environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kudoh, Hiroshi

    2016-04-01

    Phenology refers to the study of seasonal schedules of organisms. Molecular phenology is defined here as the study of the seasonal patterns of organisms captured by molecular biology techniques. The history of molecular phenology is reviewed briefly in relation to advances in the quantification technology of gene expression. High-resolution molecular phenology (HMP) data have enabled us to study phenology with an approach of in natura systems biology. I review recent analyses of FLOWERING LOCUS C (FLC), a temperature-responsive repressor of flowering, along the six steps in the typical flow of in natura systems biology. The extensive studies of the regulation of FLC have made this example a successful case in which a comprehensive understanding of gene functions has been progressing. The FLC-mediated long-term memory of past temperatures creates time lags with other seasonal signals, such as photoperiod and short-term temperature. Major signals that control flowering time have a phase lag between them under natural conditions, and hypothetical phase lag calendars are proposed as mechanisms of season detection in plants. Transcriptomic HMP brings a novel strategy to the study of molecular phenology, because it provides a comprehensive representation of plant functions. I discuss future perspectives of molecular phenology from the standpoints of molecular biology, evolutionary biology and ecology. © 2015 The Author. New Phytologist © 2015 New Phytologist Trust.

  2. Plausible mechanisms explaining the association of periodontitis with cardiovascular diseases

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Loos, B.G.; Teeuw, W.J.; Nicu, E.A.; Lynge Petersen, A.M.

    2016-01-01

    The association between periodontitis and cardiovascular diseases is now well established. Cardiovascular diseases include atherosclerosis, coronary heart (artery) disease, cerebrovascular disease, and peripheral artery disease. Atherosclerosis is the underlying pathology of cardiovascular diseases.

  3. Studies on the changes of biologically active complexes of sunflower oil, tard, and butter under gamma irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ivanov, A.; Stamatov, D.

    1976-01-01

    Investigations of changes in the biologically active complex of sunflower oil, lard and butter under the influence of gamma rays: The points examined are the effect of small, medium and large doses (10 4 , 10 6 and 10 7 ) of gamma rays (Co 60 ) and the after-effect on the carotenes, tocopherols, sterols and linoleic acid in sunflower oil, lard and butter. Under these conditions, only the carotenes and tocopherols are subjected to changes to the point of destruction. What was found is a good correlative connection between the changes in the tocopherols and the degree of oxidation of the corresponding fats. (orig.) [de

  4. Study Under AC Stimulation on Excitement Properties of Weighted Small-World Biological Neural Networks with Side-Restrain Mechanism

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yuan Wujie; Luo Xiaoshu; Jiang Pinqun

    2007-01-01

    In this paper, we propose a new model of weighted small-world biological neural networks based on biophysical Hodgkin-Huxley neurons with side-restrain mechanism. Then we study excitement properties of the model under alternating current (AC) stimulation. The study shows that the excitement properties in the networks are preferably consistent with the behavior properties of a brain nervous system under different AC stimuli, such as refractory period and the brain neural excitement response induced by different intensities of noise and coupling. The results of the study have reference worthiness for the brain nerve electrophysiology and epistemological science.

  5. Identifying the underlying causes of biological instability in a full-scale drinking water supply system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nescerecka, Alina; Juhna, Talis; Hammes, Frederik

    2018-05-15

    Changes in bacterial concentration and composition in drinking water during distribution are often attributed to biological (in)stability. Here we assessed temporal biological stability in a full-scale distribution network (DN) supplied with different types of source water: treated and chlorinated surface water and chlorinated groundwater produced at three water treatment plants (WTP). Monitoring was performed weekly during 12 months in two locations in the DN. Flow cytometric total and intact cell concentration (ICC) measurements showed considerable seasonal fluctuations, which were different for two locations. ICC varied between 0.1-3.75 × 10 5  cells mL -1 and 0.69-4.37 × 10 5  cells mL -1 at two locations respectively, with ICC increases attributed to temperature-dependent bacterial growth during distribution. Chlorinated water from the different WTP was further analysed with a modified growth potential method, identifying primary and secondary growth limiting compounds. It was observed that bacterial growth in the surface water sample after chlorination was primarily inhibited by phosphorus limitation and secondly by organic carbon limitation, while carbon was limiting in the chlorinated groundwater samples. However, the ratio of available nutrients changed during distribution, and together with disinfection residual decay, this resulted in higher bacterial growth potential detected in the DN than at the WTP. In this study, bacterial growth was found to be higher (i) at higher water temperatures, (ii) in samples with lower chlorine residuals and (iii) in samples with less nutrient (carbon, phosphorus, nitrogen, iron) limitation, while this was significantly different between the samples of different origin. Thus drinking water microbiological quality and biological stability could change during different seasons, and the extent of these changes depends on water temperature, the water source and treatment. Furthermore, differences in primary

  6. Vulnerabilities to agricultural production shocks: An extreme, plausible scenario for assessment of risk for the insurance sector

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tobias Lunt

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Climate risks pose a threat to the function of the global food system and therefore also a hazard to the global financial sector, the stability of governments, and the food security and health of the world’s population. This paper presents a method to assess plausible impacts of an agricultural production shock and potential materiality for global insurers. A hypothetical, near-term, plausible, extreme scenario was developed based upon modules of historical agricultural production shocks, linked under a warm phase El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO meteorological framework. The scenario included teleconnected floods and droughts in disparate agricultural production regions around the world, as well as plausible, extreme biotic shocks. In this scenario, global crop yield declines of 10% for maize, 11% for soy, 7% for wheat and 7% for rice result in quadrupled commodity prices and commodity stock fluctuations, civil unrest, significant negative humanitarian consequences and major financial losses worldwide. This work illustrates a need for the scientific community to partner across sectors and industries towards better-integrated global data, modeling and analytical capacities, to better respond to and prepare for concurrent agricultural failure. Governments, humanitarian organizations and the private sector collectively may recognize significant benefits from more systematic assessment of exposure to agricultural climate risk.

  7. Males Under-Estimate Academic Performance of Their Female Peers in Undergraduate Biology Classrooms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grunspan, Daniel Z; Eddy, Sarah L; Brownell, Sara E; Wiggins, Benjamin L; Crowe, Alison J; Goodreau, Steven M

    2016-01-01

    Women who start college in one of the natural or physical sciences leave in greater proportions than their male peers. The reasons for this difference are complex, and one possible contributing factor is the social environment women experience in the classroom. Using social network analysis, we explore how gender influences the confidence that college-level biology students have in each other's mastery of biology. Results reveal that males are more likely than females to be named by peers as being knowledgeable about the course content. This effect increases as the term progresses, and persists even after controlling for class performance and outspokenness. The bias in nominations is specifically due to males over-nominating their male peers relative to their performance. The over-nomination of male peers is commensurate with an overestimation of male grades by 0.57 points on a 4 point grade scale, indicating a strong male bias among males when assessing their classmates. Females, in contrast, nominated equitably based on student performance rather than gender, suggesting they lacked gender biases in filling out these surveys. These trends persist across eleven surveys taken in three different iterations of the same Biology course. In every class, the most renowned students are always male. This favoring of males by peers could influence student self-confidence, and thus persistence in this STEM discipline.

  8. From the Physical World to the Biological Universe: Historical Developments Underlying SETI

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, Steven J.

    More than thirty years ago the French historian of science Alexandre Koyré (1957) wrote his classic volume, From the Closed World to the Infinite Universe, in which he argued that a fundamental shift in world view had taken place in 17th century cosmology. Between Nicholas of Cusa in the fifteenth century and Newton and Leibniz in the seventeenth, he found that the very terms in which humans thought about their universe had changed. These changes he characterized broadly as the destruction of the closed finite cosmos and the geometrization of space. The occasion of the Third International Bioastronomy Symposium in France is an especially appropriate time to argue that the SETI endeavor represents a test for a similar fundamental shift in cosmological world view, from the physical world to the biological universe. I define the biological universe, equivalent to what I have called before the biophysical cosmology (Dick, 1989), as the scientific world view which holds that life is widespread throughout the universe. In this case the biological universe does not necessarily supersede the physical universe, but a universe filled with life would certainly fundamentally alter our attitude toward the universe, and our place in it. Although Koyré mentioned life beyond the Earth as an adjunct to the revolution from the closed world to the infinite universe, only in the 1980s has the history of science begun to give full treatment to the subject. What follows is meant to be a contribution to that ongoing endeavor to understand where the extraterrestrial life debate fits in the history of science. The modern era in the extraterrestrial life debate is normally dated from Cocconi and Morrison's paper in 1959, and though one can always find precursors, this in my view is a valid perception. Cocconi and Morrison gave definite form to SETI, Frank Drake independently first carried out the experiment, a network of interested scientists began to form and met in Green Bank in

  9. Effects of species biological traits and environmental heterogeneity on simulated tree species distribution shifts under climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Wen J; He, Hong S; Thompson, Frank R; Spetich, Martin A; Fraser, Jacob S

    2018-09-01

    Demographic processes (fecundity, dispersal, colonization, growth, and mortality) and their interactions with environmental changes are not well represented in current climate-distribution models (e.g., niche and biophysical process models) and constitute a large uncertainty in projections of future tree species distribution shifts. We investigate how species biological traits and environmental heterogeneity affect species distribution shifts. We used a species-specific, spatially explicit forest dynamic model LANDIS PRO, which incorporates site-scale tree species demography and competition, landscape-scale dispersal and disturbances, and regional-scale abiotic controls, to simulate the distribution shifts of four representative tree species with distinct biological traits in the central hardwood forest region of United States. Our results suggested that biological traits (e.g., dispersal capacity, maturation age) were important for determining tree species distribution shifts. Environmental heterogeneity, on average, reduced shift rates by 8% compared to perfect environmental conditions. The average distribution shift rates ranged from 24 to 200myear -1 under climate change scenarios, implying that many tree species may not able to keep up with climate change because of limited dispersal capacity, long generation time, and environmental heterogeneity. We suggest that climate-distribution models should include species demographic processes (e.g., fecundity, dispersal, colonization), biological traits (e.g., dispersal capacity, maturation age), and environmental heterogeneity (e.g., habitat fragmentation) to improve future predictions of species distribution shifts in response to changing climates. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Elucidating the molecular mechanisms underlying cellular response to biophysical cues using synthetic biology approaches

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Denning, Denise; Roos, Wouter H

    2016-01-01

    The use of synthetic surfaces and materials to influence and study cell behavior has vastly progressed our understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms involved in cellular response to physicochemical and biophysical cues. Reconstituting cytoskeletal proteins and interfacing them with a

  11. Dysfunctional Hematopoietic Stem Cell Biology: Underlying Mechanisms and Potential Therapeutic Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anja Geiselhart

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Fanconi anemia (FA is the most common inherited bone marrow failure syndrome. FA patients suffer to varying degrees from a heterogeneous range of developmental defects and, in addition, have an increased likelihood of developing cancer. Almost all FA patients develop a severe, progressive bone marrow failure syndrome, which impacts upon the production of all hematopoietic lineages and, hence, is thought to be driven by a defect at the level of the hematopoietic stem cell (HSC. This hypothesis would also correlate with the very high incidence of MDS and AML that is observed in FA patients. In this paper, we discuss the evidence that supports the role of dysfunctional HSC biology in driving the etiology of the disease. Furthermore, we consider the different model systems currently available to study the biology of cells defective in the FA signaling pathway and how they are informative in terms of identifying the physiologic mediators of HSC depletion and dissecting their putative mechanism of action. Finally, we ask whether the insights gained using such disease models can be translated into potential novel therapeutic strategies for the treatment of the hematologic disorders in FA patients.

  12. [Rome: capital of an empire under the banner of political biology (1936-1942)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vallejo, Gustavo

    2012-01-01

    This paper analyzes the symbolic conformation of Rome and Romanism as important factors in the affirmation of the power of fascism, especially after the proclamation of the Empire in 1936. Within this framework, it explores the role of science in legitimizing the direct correlation of this symbolic universe with a praxis that exalted racial superiority inherited from Ancient Rome. It investigates the links between the eugenic discourse and the exercise of power behind the "biology policy", including fascist organicism and racism. In fact, Rome was the essence of an empire that was reborn after fifteen centuries and, between its historical legacy and the new scenarios created by fascism for disciplining the population, Romanism had to condense all of the merits of the race, encouraging military conquests and promoting responsibility for maintaining racial purity and avoiding "unwanted miscegenation" with conquered peoples. The idea of Romanism also encouraged a continuation of the persecution of Jews started in Germany. Hence, science ratified a widespread idea of the Romanization as a crusade to impose a force, exaggerated on racial grounds, which integrated confidence in environmental factors with a crude biological determinism.

  13. IBPRO - A Novel Short-Duration Teaching Course in Advanced Physics and Biology Underlying Cancer Radiotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joiner, Michael C; Tracey, Monica W; Kacin, Sara E; Burmeister, Jay W

    2017-06-01

    This article provides a summary and status report of the ongoing advanced education program IBPRO - Integrated course in Biology and Physics of Radiation Oncology. IBPRO is a five-year program funded by NCI. It addresses the recognized deficiency in the number of mentors available who have the required knowledge and skill to provide the teaching and training that is required for future radiation oncologists and researchers in radiation sciences. Each year, IBPRO brings together 50 attendees typically at assistant professor level and upwards, who are already qualified/certified radiation oncologists, medical physicists or biologists. These attendees receive keynote lectures and activities based on active learning strategies, merging together the clinical, biological and physics underpinnings of radiation oncology, at the forefront of the field. This experience is aimed at increasing collaborations, raising the level and amount of basic and applied research undertaken in radiation oncology, and enabling attendees to confidently become involved in the future teaching and training of researchers and radiation oncologists.

  14. Suitability of Commercial Transport Media for Biological Pathogens under Nonideal Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyle Hubbard

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available There is extensive data to support the use of commercial transport media as a stabilizer for known clinical samples; however, there is little information to support their use outside of controlled conditions specified by the manufacturer. Furthermore, there is no data to determine the suitability of said media for biological pathogens, specifically those of interest to the US military. This study evaluates commercial off-the-shelf (COTS transport media based on sample recovery, viability, and quality of nucleic acids and peptides for nonpathogenic strains of Bacillus anthracis, Yersinia pestis, and Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus, in addition to ricin toxin. Samples were stored in COTS, PBST, or no media at various temperatures over an extended test period. The results demonstrate that COTS media, although sufficient for the preservation of nucleic acid and proteinaceous material, are not capable of maintaining an accurate representation of biothreat agents at the time of collection.

  15. Under the sword of Damocles: plausible regeneration of dark matter cusps at the smallest galactic scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laporte, Chervin F. P.; Peñarrubia, Jorge

    2015-04-01

    We study the evolution of the dark matter (DM) halo profiles of dwarf galaxies driven by the accretion of DM substructures through controlled N-body experiments. Our initial conditions assume that early supernova feedback erases the primordial DM cusps of haloes with z = 0 masses of 109 - 1010 M⊙. The orbits and masses of the infalling substructures are borrowed from the Aquarius cosmological simulations. Our experiments show that a fraction of haloes that undergo 1:3 down to 1:30 mergers are susceptible to reform a DM cusp by z ≈ 0. Cusp regrowth is driven by the accretion of DM substructures that are dense enough to reach the central regions of the main halo before being tidally disrupted. The infall of substructures on the mean of the reported mass-concentration relation and a mass ratio above 1:6 systematically leads to cusp regrowth. Substructures with 1:6-1:8, and 1:8-1:30 only reform DM cusps if their densities are 1σ and 2σ above the mean, respectively. The merging time-scales of these dense, low-mass substructures is relatively long (5 - 11 Gyr), which may pose a time-scale problem for the longevity of DM cores in dwarfs galaxies and possibly explain the existence of dense dwarfs-like Draco. These results suggest that within cold dark matter a non-negligible level of scatter in the mass profiles of galactic haloes acted on by feedback is to be expected given the stochastic mass accretion histories of low-mass haloes and the diverse star formation histories observed in the Local Group dwarfs.

  16. Gut Microbiome and Obesity: A Plausible Explanation for Obesity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanmiguel, Claudia; Gupta, Arpana; Mayer, Emeran A

    2015-06-01

    Obesity is a multifactorial disorder that results in excessive accumulation of adipose tissue. Although obesity is caused by alterations in the energy consumption/expenditure balance, the factors promoting this disequilibrium are incompletely understood. The rapid development of new technologies and analysis strategies to decode the gut microbiota composition and metabolic pathways has opened a door into the complexity of the guest-host interactions between the gut microbiota and its human host in health and in disease. Pivotal studies have demonstrated that manipulation of the gut microbiota and its metabolic pathways can affect host's adiposity and metabolism. These observations have paved the way for further assessment of the mechanisms underlying these changes. In this review we summarize the current evidence for possible mechanisms underlying gut microbiota induced obesity. The review addresses some well-known effects of the gut microbiota on energy harvesting and changes in metabolic machinery, on metabolic and immune interactions and on possible changes in brain function and behavior. Although there is limited understanding on the symbiotic relationship between us and our gut microbiome, and how disturbances of this relationship affects our health, there is compelling evidence for an important role of the gut microbiota in the development and perpetuation of obesity.

  17. Gut Microbiome and Obesity: A Plausible Explanation for Obesity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanmiguel, Claudia; Gupta, Arpana; Mayer, Emeran A.

    2015-01-01

    Obesity is a multifactorial disorder that results in excessive accumulation of adipose tissue. Although obesity is caused by alterations in the energy consumption/expenditure balance, the factors promoting this disequilibrium are incompletely understood. The rapid development of new technologies and analysis strategies to decode the gut microbiota composition and metabolic pathways has opened a door into the complexity of the guest-host interactions between the gut microbiota and its human host in health and in disease. Pivotal studies have demonstrated that manipulation of the gut microbiota and its metabolic pathways can affect host’s adiposity and metabolism. These observations have paved the way for further assessment of the mechanisms underlying these changes. In this review we summarize the current evidence for possible mechanisms underlying gut microbiota induced obesity. The review addresses some well-known effects of the gut microbiota on energy harvesting and changes in metabolic machinery, on metabolic and immune interactions and on possible changes in brain function and behavior. Although there is limited understanding on the symbiotic relationship between us and our gut microbiome, and how disturbances of this relationship affects our health, there is compelling evidence for an important role of the gut microbiota in the development and perpetuation of obesity. PMID:26029487

  18. Plausibility of Menstrual Cycle Apps Claiming to Support Conception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freis, Alexander; Freundl-Schütt, Tanja; Wallwiener, Lisa-Maria; Baur, Sigfried; Strowitzki, Thomas; Freundl, Günter; Frank-Herrmann, Petra

    2018-01-01

    The interval of peak fertility during the menstrual cycle is of limited duration, and the day of ovulation varies, even in women with fairly regular cycles. Therefore, menstrual cycle apps identifying the "fertile window" for women trying to conceive must be quite precise. A deviation of a few days may lead the couple to focus on less- or non-fertile days for sexual intercourse and thus may be worse than random intercourse. The aim of the present investigation was to develop a scoring system for rating available apps for determining the fertile window and secondarily pilot test 12 apps currently available in both German and English (consisting of 6 calendar-based apps: Clue Menstruations- und Zykluskalender, Flo Menstruationskalender, Maya-Mein Periodentracker, Menstruationskalender Pro, Period Tracker Deluxe, and WomanLog-Pro-Kalender; 2 calculothermal apps: Ovy and Natural Cycles; and 4 symptothermal apps: myNFP, Lady Cycle, Lily, and OvuView). The calendar-based apps were investigated by entering several series of cycles with varying lengths, whereas the symptom-based apps were examined by entering data of cycles with known temperature rise, cervical mucus pattern, and clinical ovulation. The main criteria for evaluating the cycle apps were as follows: (1) What methods/parameters were used to determine the fertile window? (2) What study results exist concerning that underlying method/parameters? (3) What study results exist concerning the app itself? (4) Was there a qualified counseling service? The calendar-based apps predicted the fertile days based on data of previous cycles. They obtained zero points in our scoring system, as they did not comply with any of the evaluated criteria. Calculothermal apps had similar deficits for predicting the most fertile days and produced suboptimal results (Ovy 3/30 points and Natural Cycles 2/30 points). The symptothermal apps determined the fertile days based on parameters of the current cycle: Lady Cycle scored 20

  19. ACTIVITY OF LICHENS UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF SNOW AND ICE (18th Symposium on Polar Biology)

    OpenAIRE

    Ludger, KAPPEN; Burkhard, SCHROETER

    1997-01-01

    A major aim of our investigations is to explain the adaptation of vegetation to the peculiar environmental conditions in polar regions. Our concept describes the main limiting and favorable factors influencing photosynthetic production of cryptogams, mainly lichens. Snow and ice-usually stress factors to the activity of plants-can be effectively used by lichens because of their poikilohydrous nature. Light, the basic driving force for photosynthetic activity, may be deleterious under certain ...

  20. Biology of Anicla infecta (Ochsenheimer, 1816 (Lepidoptera, Noctuidae, Noctuinae, under laboratory conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. A. TESTON

    Full Text Available Larvae of Anicla infecta (Ochsenheimer, 1816 (Noctuidae feed upon many grasses and may be harmful to cereals and fodder of economic importance. This study was developed aiming to contribute to knowledge of the biology of this species. The rearing was done in an environmental chamber with the following settings: temperature of 25 ± 1ºC; relative humidity of 70% ± 10%, and photoperiod of L14: D10. The larvae fed on ryegrass, Lolium multiflorum Lam. The results express the mean and standard error for the length of every stage in days. For each stage we observed the following time of development: egg 3.2 ± 0.09; larvae 18.7 ± 0.07; pre-pupae 3.3 ± 0.04; pupae 12.6 ± 0.14; and adult longevity was 12.1 ± 1.03. Also the pre-egg-laying period was 4.4 ± 0.59; the egg-laying period was 8.1 ± 0.84; and the post-egg-laying period was 0.3 ± 0.14. The mean number of egg-laying cycles per female was 6.7 ± 0.73; that of eggs per cycle was 77.5 ± 4.37; and total eggs per female was 521.4 ± 47.36.

  1. Water regime of mechanical-biological pretreated waste materials under fast-growing trees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rüth, Björn; Lennartz, Bernd; Kahle, Petra

    2007-10-01

    In this study mechanical-biological pre-treated waste material (MBP) was tested for suitability to serve as an alternative surface layer in combination with fast-growing and water-consumptive trees for final covers at landfill sites. The aim was to quantify evapotranspiration and seepage losses by numerical model simulations for two sites in Germany. In addition, the leaf area index (LAI) of six tree species over the growing season as the driving parameter for transpiration calculations was determined experimentally. The maximum LAI varied between 3.8 and 6.1 m2 m(-2) for poplar and willow clones, respectively. The evapotranspiration calculations revealed that the use of MBP waste material for re-cultivation enhanced evapotranspiration by 40 mm year(-1) (10%) over an 11 year calculation period compared to a standard mineral soil. Between 82% (for LAI(max) = 3.8) and 87% (for LAI(max) = 6.1) of the average annual precipitation (506 mm) could be retained from the surface layer assuming eastern German climate conditions, compared with a retention efficiency between 79 and 82% for a mineral soil. Although a MBP layer in conjunction with water-consumptive trees can reduce vertical water losses as compared to mineral substrates, the effect is not sufficient to meet legal regulations.

  2. Biological properties of Majnnthemum bifolium (L. F. W. Schm. polycormones under various ecological conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bożena Czarnecka

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Majanthemum bifolium (L. F. W. Schm. populations exhibit a two-level organisation. Individuals in the biological sense (polycormones consists of a number of basic units-above-ground shoots joined by durable rhizomes. The role of the individual in the population and plant community depends on its age, size and individual area which is the exponent of the number and biomass of the produced organs. It is considered that there exist both intra- and interpopulation differences in the number of above-ground shoots and length of rhizomes as well as in the structure of the developmental phases and age states of the above- and underground parts of the polycormones. In all populations the greater part of the biomass falls to underground organs. A more favourable ratio of shoot biomass to that of rhizomes is, however, found in the polycormones of Dentario glandulosae-Fagetum and Carici elongatae-Alnetum where the presence of nitrogen in nitrate form was disclosed. With increase of participation of young age classes of shoots more of the total biomass falls to the above-ground parts.

  3. The biology of personalized cancer medicine: facing individual complexities underlying hallmark capabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Palma, Michele; Hanahan, Douglas

    2012-04-01

    It is a time of great promise and expectation for the applications of knowledge about mechanisms of cancer toward more effective and enduring therapies for human disease. Conceptualizations such as the hallmarks of cancer are providing an organizing principle with which to distill and rationalize the abject complexities of cancer phenotypes and genotypes across the spectrum of the human disease. A countervailing reality, however, involves the variable and often transitory responses to most mechanism-based targeted therapies, returning full circle to the complexity, arguing that the unique biology and genetics of a patient's tumor will in the future necessarily need to be incorporated into the decisions about optimal treatment strategies, the frontier of personalized cancer medicine. This perspective highlights considerations, metrics, and methods that may prove instrumental in charting the landscape of evaluating individual tumors so to better inform diagnosis, prognosis, and therapy. Integral to the consideration is remarkable heterogeneity and variability, evidently embedded in cancer cells, but likely also in the cell types composing the supportive and interactive stroma of the tumor microenvironment (e.g., leukocytes and fibroblasts), whose diversity in form, regulation, function, and abundance may prove to rival that of the cancer cells themselves. By comprehensively interrogating both parenchyma and stroma of patients' cancers with a suite of parametric tools, the promise of mechanism-based therapy may truly be realized. Copyright © 2012 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Dehydration Influences Mood and Cognition: A Plausible Hypothesis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benton, David

    2011-01-01

    The hypothesis was considered that a low fluid intake disrupts cognition and mood. Most research has been carried out on young fit adults, who typically have exercised, often in heat. The results of these studies are inconsistent, preventing any conclusion. Even if the findings had been consistent, confounding variables such as fatigue and increased temperature make it unwise to extrapolate these findings. Thus in young adults there is little evidence that under normal living conditions dehydration disrupts cognition, although this may simply reflect a lack of relevant evidence. There remains the possibility that particular populations are at high risk of dehydration. It is known that renal function declines in many older individuals and thirst mechanisms become less effective. Although there are a few reports that more dehydrated older adults perform cognitive tasks less well, the body of information is limited and there have been little attempt to improve functioning by increasing hydration status. Although children are another potentially vulnerable group that have also been subject to little study, they are the group that has produced the only consistent findings in this area. Four intervention studies have found improved performance in children aged 7 to 9 years. In these studies children, eating and drinking as normal, have been tested on occasions when they have and not have consumed a drink. After a drink both memory and attention have been found to be improved. PMID:22254111

  5. Memory formation during anaesthesia: plausibility of a neurophysiological basis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veselis, R. A.

    2015-01-01

    As opposed to conscious, personally relevant (explicit) memories that we can recall at will, implicit (unconscious) memories are prototypical of ‘hidden’ memory; memories that exist, but that we do not know we possess. Nevertheless, our behaviour can be affected by these memories; in fact, these memories allow us to function in an ever-changing world. It is still unclear from behavioural studies whether similar memories can be formed during anaesthesia. Thus, a relevant question is whether implicit memory formation is a realistic possibility during anaesthesia, considering the underlying neurophysiology. A different conceptualization of memory taxonomy is presented, the serial parallel independent model of Tulving, which focuses on dynamic information processing with interactions among different memory systems rather than static classification of different types of memories. The neurophysiological basis for subliminal information processing is considered in the context of brain function as embodied in network interactions. Function of sensory cortices and thalamic activity during anaesthesia are reviewed. The role of sensory and perisensory cortices, in particular the auditory cortex, in support of memory function is discussed. Although improbable, with the current knowledge of neurophysiology one cannot rule out the possibility of memory formation during anaesthesia. PMID:25735711

  6. Memory formation during anaesthesia: plausibility of a neurophysiological basis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veselis, R A

    2015-07-01

    As opposed to conscious, personally relevant (explicit) memories that we can recall at will, implicit (unconscious) memories are prototypical of 'hidden' memory; memories that exist, but that we do not know we possess. Nevertheless, our behaviour can be affected by these memories; in fact, these memories allow us to function in an ever-changing world. It is still unclear from behavioural studies whether similar memories can be formed during anaesthesia. Thus, a relevant question is whether implicit memory formation is a realistic possibility during anaesthesia, considering the underlying neurophysiology. A different conceptualization of memory taxonomy is presented, the serial parallel independent model of Tulving, which focuses on dynamic information processing with interactions among different memory systems rather than static classification of different types of memories. The neurophysiological basis for subliminal information processing is considered in the context of brain function as embodied in network interactions. Function of sensory cortices and thalamic activity during anaesthesia are reviewed. The role of sensory and perisensory cortices, in particular the auditory cortex, in support of memory function is discussed. Although improbable, with the current knowledge of neurophysiology one cannot rule out the possibility of memory formation during anaesthesia. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Journal of Anaesthesia. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. Elevated atmospheric CO2 affected photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under cadmium stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Xia; Liu, Tuo; Zhao, Yonghua; He, Yunhua; Yang, Mingyan

    2016-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of elevated CO2 (700 ± 23 μmol mol(-1)) on photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and on organic compounds and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under cadmium (Cd) stress. Elevated CO2 was associated with decreased quantities of reducing sugars, starch, and soluble amino acids, and with increased quantities of soluble sugars, total sugars, and soluble proteins in wheat seedlings under Cd stress. The contents of total soluble sugars, total free amino acids, total soluble phenolic acids, and total organic acids in the rhizosphere soil under Cd stress were improved by elevated CO2. Compared to Cd stress alone, the activity of amylase, phenol oxidase, urease, L-asparaginase, β-glucosidase, neutral phosphatase, and fluorescein diacetate increased under elevated CO2 in combination with Cd stress; only cellulase activity decreased. Bacterial abundance in rhizosphere soil was stimulated by elevated CO2 at low Cd concentrations (1.31-5.31 mg Cd kg(-1) dry soil). Actinomycetes, total microbial abundance, and fungi decreased under the combined conditions at 5.31-10.31 mg Cd kg(-1) dry soil. In conclusion, increased production of soluble sugars, total sugars, and proteins in wheat seedlings under elevated CO2 + Cd stress led to greater quantities of organic compounds in the rhizosphere soil relative to seedlings grown under Cd stress only. Elevated CO2 concentrations could moderate the effects of heavy metal pollution on enzyme activity and microorganism abundance in rhizosphere soils, thus improving soil fertility and the microecological rhizosphere environment of wheat under Cd stress.

  8. Functional knowledge transfer for high-accuracy prediction of under-studied biological processes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Y Park

    Full Text Available A key challenge in genetics is identifying the functional roles of genes in pathways. Numerous functional genomics techniques (e.g. machine learning that predict protein function have been developed to address this question. These methods generally build from existing annotations of genes to pathways and thus are often unable to identify additional genes participating in processes that are not already well studied. Many of these processes are well studied in some organism, but not necessarily in an investigator's organism of interest. Sequence-based search methods (e.g. BLAST have been used to transfer such annotation information between organisms. We demonstrate that functional genomics can complement traditional sequence similarity to improve the transfer of gene annotations between organisms. Our method transfers annotations only when functionally appropriate as determined by genomic data and can be used with any prediction algorithm to combine transferred gene function knowledge with organism-specific high-throughput data to enable accurate function prediction. We show that diverse state-of-art machine learning algorithms leveraging functional knowledge transfer (FKT dramatically improve their accuracy in predicting gene-pathway membership, particularly for processes with little experimental knowledge in an organism. We also show that our method compares favorably to annotation transfer by sequence similarity. Next, we deploy FKT with state-of-the-art SVM classifier to predict novel genes to 11,000 biological processes across six diverse organisms and expand the coverage of accurate function predictions to processes that are often ignored because of a dearth of annotated genes in an organism. Finally, we perform in vivo experimental investigation in Danio rerio and confirm the regulatory role of our top predicted novel gene, wnt5b, in leftward cell migration during heart development. FKT is immediately applicable to many bioinformatics

  9. The missing link between sleep disorders and age-related dementia: recent evidence and plausible mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Feng; Zhong, Rujia; Li, Song; Chang, Raymond Chuen-Chung; Le, Weidong

    2017-05-01

    Sleep disorders are among the most common clinical problems and possess a significant concern for the geriatric population. More importantly, while around 40% of elderly adults have sleep-related complaints, sleep disorders are more frequently associated with co-morbidities including age-related neurodegenerative diseases and mild cognitive impairment. Recently, increasing evidence has indicated that disturbed sleep may not only serve as the consequence of brain atrophy, but also contribute to the pathogenesis of dementia and, therefore, significantly increase dementia risk. Since the current therapeutic interventions lack efficacies to prevent, delay or reverse the pathological progress of dementia, a better understanding of underlying mechanisms by which sleep disorders interact with the pathogenesis of dementia will provide possible targets for the prevention and treatment of dementia. In this review, we briefly describe the physiological roles of sleep in learning/memory, and specifically update the recent research evidence demonstrating the association between sleep disorders and dementia. Plausible mechanisms are further discussed. Moreover, we also evaluate the possibility of sleep therapy as a potential intervention for dementia.

  10. A plausible mechanism of biosorption in dual symbioses by vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azmat, Rafia; Hamid, Neelofer

    2015-03-01

    Dual symbioses of vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal (VAM) fungi with growth of Momordica charantia were elucidated in terms of plausible mechanism of biosorption in this article. The experiment was conducted in green house and mixed inoculum of the VAM fungi was used in the three replicates. Results demonstrated that the starch contents were the main source of C for the VAM to builds their hyphae. The increased plant height and leaves surface area were explained in relation with an increase in the photosynthetic rates to produce rapid sugar contents for the survival of plants. A decreased in protein, and amino acid contents and increased proline and protease activity in VAM plants suggested that these contents were the main bio-indicators of the plants under biotic stress. The decline in protein may be due to the degradation of these contents, which later on converted into dextrose where it can easily be absorbed by for the period of symbioses. A mechanism of C chemisorption in relation with physiology and morphology of plant was discussed.

  11. Some problems of biological effects under the combined action of nitrogen oxides, their metabolites and radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Malenchenko, A.F.

    1985-01-01

    The progress of power engineering envisages the intensive construction of nuclear-energy plants, where an organic or nuclear fuel is used. Nowadays the concept of nuclear-energy plant with the coolant based on dissociating N 2 O 4 is being developed. A great deal of radioactive and chemical products escapes into surroundings as the result of the power plants being in service. Their action on organisms is performed simultaneously, that could have an essential effect on the quantitative and qualitative regularities of response. The estimation of the combined effect of nitrogen oxides, sodium nitrite and nitrate and radiation has been carried out on the base of the investigation into methemoglobin formation, genetic effects and the pathomorphological changes in lungs. The formation of methemoglobin has been studied on rats in 1, 3, 7 and 15 days after the single total irradiation of 300 and 700 R doses at the gamma-installation (UGU-420) using a radioactive 60 Co. Methemoglobin was determined in the interval of 15-180 min after NaNO 2 administration in the dosage of 7.0 mg per 100 g body weight. The irradiation essentially affects the process of methemoglobin formation and its reduction. The methemoglobin content in the blood of radiation exposed animals exceeds the value, that could be expected to obtain by summing up its concentration under the separate effects of nitrite and irradiation. The genetic effects of sodium nitrite and nitrate and X-radiation have been studied on the Drosophila. The one-day flies were exposed to the radiation dose of 1500 R in the medium with the sodium nitrite or nitrate contents of 0.1 or 1.0 g/l, respectively. The combined action estimated through the frequency of the dominant lethal mutation, recessive coupled with a lethal mutation sex, viability and fecundity definitely differs from the expected summing values of the separate effect indices of radiation and toxic factors. The morpho- and functional changes in the rat lungs (the

  12. Physically plausible prescription of land surface model soil moisture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauser, Mathias; Orth, René; Thiery, Wim; Seneviratne, Sonia

    2016-04-01

    Land surface hydrology is an important control of surface weather and climate, especially under extreme dry or wet conditions where it can amplify heat waves or floods, respectively. Prescribing soil moisture in land surface models is a valuable technique to investigate this link between hydrology and climate. It has been used for example to assess the influence of soil moisture on temperature variability, mean and extremes (Seneviratne et al. 2006, 2013, Lorenz et al., 2015). However, perturbing the soil moisture content artificially can lead to a violation of the energy and water balances. Here we present a new method for prescribing soil moisture which ensures water and energy balance closure by using only water from runoff and a reservoir term. If water is available, the method prevents soil moisture decrease below climatological values. Results from simulations with the Community Land Model (CLM) indicate that our new method allows to avoid soil moisture deficits in many regions of the world. We show the influence of the irrigation-supported soil moisture content on mean and extreme temperatures and contrast our findings with that of earlier studies. Additionally, we will assess how long into the 21st century the new method will be able to maintain present-day climatological soil moisture levels for different regions. Lorenz, R., Argüeso, D., Donat, M.G., Pitman, A.J., den Hurk, B.V., Berg, A., Lawrence, D.M., Chéruy, F., Ducharne, A., Hagemann, S. and Meier, A., 2015. Influence of land-atmosphere feedbacks on temperature and precipitation extremes in the GLACE-CMIP5 ensemble. Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres. Seneviratne, S.I., Lüthi, D., Litschi, M. and Schär, C., 2006. Land-atmosphere coupling and climate change in Europe. Nature, 443(7108), pp.205-209. Seneviratne, S.I., Wilhelm, M., Stanelle, T., Hurk, B., Hagemann, S., Berg, A., Cheruy, F., Higgins, M.E., Meier, A., Brovkin, V. and Claussen, M., 2013. Impact of soil moisture

  13. Compressed sensing along physically plausible sampling trajectories in MRI

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chauffert, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a non-invasive and non-ionizing imaging technique that provides images of body tissues, using the contrast sensitivity coming from the magnetic parameters (T_1, T_2 and proton density). Data are acquired in the κ-space, corresponding to spatial Fourier frequencies. Because of physical constraints, the displacement in the κ-space is subject to kinematic constraints. Indeed, magnetic field gradients and their temporal derivative are upper bounded. Hence, the scanning time increases with the image resolution. Decreasing scanning time is crucial to improve patient comfort, decrease exam costs, limit the image distortions (eg, created by the patient movement), or decrease temporal resolution in functional MRI. Reducing scanning time can be addressed by Compressed Sensing (CS) theory. The latter is a technique that guarantees the perfect recovery of an image from under sampled data in κ-space, by assuming that the image is sparse in a wavelet basis. Unfortunately, CS theory cannot be directly cast to the MRI setting. The reasons are: i) acquisition (Fourier) and representation (wavelets) bases are coherent and ii) sampling schemes obtained using CS theorems are composed of isolated measurements and cannot be realistically implemented by magnetic field gradients: the sampling is usually performed along continuous or more regular curves. However, heuristic application of CS in MRI has provided promising results. In this thesis, we aim to develop theoretical tools to apply CS to MRI and other modalities. On the one hand, we propose a variable density sampling theory to answer the first impediment. The more the sample contains information, the more it is likely to be drawn. On the other hand, we propose sampling schemes and design sampling trajectories that fulfill acquisition constraints, while traversing the κ-space with the sampling density advocated by the theory. The second point is complex and is thus addressed step by step

  14. Bio-physically plausible visualization of highly scattering fluorescent neocortical models for in silico experimentation

    KAUST Repository

    Abdellah, Marwan

    2017-02-15

    Background We present a visualization pipeline capable of accurate rendering of highly scattering fluorescent neocortical neuronal models. The pipeline is mainly developed to serve the computational neurobiology community. It allows the scientists to visualize the results of their virtual experiments that are performed in computer simulations, or in silico. The impact of the presented pipeline opens novel avenues for assisting the neuroscientists to build biologically accurate models of the brain. These models result from computer simulations of physical experiments that use fluorescence imaging to understand the structural and functional aspects of the brain. Due to the limited capabilities of the current visualization workflows to handle fluorescent volumetric datasets, we propose a physically-based optical model that can accurately simulate light interaction with fluorescent-tagged scattering media based on the basic principles of geometric optics and Monte Carlo path tracing. We also develop an automated and efficient framework for generating dense fluorescent tissue blocks from a neocortical column model that is composed of approximately 31000 neurons. Results Our pipeline is used to visualize a virtual fluorescent tissue block of 50 μm3 that is reconstructed from the somatosensory cortex of juvenile rat. The fluorescence optical model is qualitatively analyzed and validated against experimental emission spectra of different fluorescent dyes from the Alexa Fluor family. Conclusion We discussed a scientific visualization pipeline for creating images of synthetic neocortical neuronal models that are tagged virtually with fluorescent labels on a physically-plausible basis. The pipeline is applied to analyze and validate simulation data generated from neuroscientific in silico experiments.

  15. Systems biology analysis of drivers underlying hallmarks of cancer cell metabolism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zielinski, Daniel C.; Jamshidi, Neema; Corbett, Austin J.; Bordbar, Aarash; Thomas, Alex; Palsson, Bernhard O.

    2017-01-01

    Malignant transformation is often accompanied by significant metabolic changes. To identify drivers underlying these changes, we calculated metabolic flux states for the NCI60 cell line collection and correlated the variance between metabolic states of these lines with their other properties. The analysis revealed a remarkably consistent structure underlying high flux metabolism. The three primary uptake pathways, glucose, glutamine and serine, are each characterized by three features: (1) metabolite uptake sufficient for the stoichiometric requirement to sustain observed growth, (2) overflow metabolism, which scales with excess nutrient uptake over the basal growth requirement, and (3) redox production, which also scales with nutrient uptake but greatly exceeds the requirement for growth. We discovered that resistance to chemotherapeutic drugs in these lines broadly correlates with the amount of glucose uptake. These results support an interpretation of the Warburg effect and glutamine addiction as features of a growth state that provides resistance to metabolic stress through excess redox and energy production. Furthermore, overflow metabolism observed may indicate that mitochondrial catabolic capacity is a key constraint setting an upper limit on the rate of cofactor production possible. These results provide a greater context within which the metabolic alterations in cancer can be understood.

  16. Integrative network analysis highlights biological processes underlying GLP-1 stimulated insulin secretion: A DIRECT study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valborg Gudmundsdottir

    Full Text Available Glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1 stimulated insulin secretion has a considerable heritable component as estimated from twin studies, yet few genetic variants influencing this phenotype have been identified. We performed the first genome-wide association study (GWAS of GLP-1 stimulated insulin secretion in non-diabetic individuals from the Netherlands Twin register (n = 126. This GWAS was enhanced using a tissue-specific protein-protein interaction network approach. We identified a beta-cell protein-protein interaction module that was significantly enriched for low gene scores based on the GWAS P-values and found support at the network level in an independent cohort from Tübingen, Germany (n = 100. Additionally, a polygenic risk score based on SNPs prioritized from the network was associated (P < 0.05 with glucose-stimulated insulin secretion phenotypes in up to 5,318 individuals in MAGIC cohorts. The network contains both known and novel genes in the context of insulin secretion and is enriched for members of the focal adhesion, extracellular-matrix receptor interaction, actin cytoskeleton regulation, Rap1 and PI3K-Akt signaling pathways. Adipose tissue is, like the beta-cell, one of the target tissues of GLP-1 and we thus hypothesized that similar networks might be functional in both tissues. In order to verify peripheral effects of GLP-1 stimulation, we compared the transcriptome profiling of ob/ob mice treated with liraglutide, a clinically used GLP-1 receptor agonist, versus baseline controls. Some of the upstream regulators of differentially expressed genes in the white adipose tissue of ob/ob mice were also detected in the human beta-cell network of genes associated with GLP-1 stimulated insulin secretion. The findings provide biological insight into the mechanisms through which the effects of GLP-1 may be modulated and highlight a potential role of the beta-cell expressed genes RYR2, GDI2, KIAA0232, COL4A1 and COL4A2 in GLP-1 stimulated

  17. Comparative analysis of the domestic cat genome reveals genetic signatures underlying feline biology and domestication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Gang; Gandolfi, Barbara; Khan, Razib; Aken, Bronwen L.; Searle, Steven M. J.; Minx, Patrick; Hillier, LaDeana W.; Koboldt, Daniel C.; Davis, Brian W.; Driscoll, Carlos A.; Barr, Christina S.; Blackistone, Kevin; Quilez, Javier; Lorente-Galdos, Belen; Marques-Bonet, Tomas; Alkan, Can; Thomas, Gregg W. C.; Hahn, Matthew W.; Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; O’Brien, Stephen J.; Wilson, Richard K.; Lyons, Leslie A.; Murphy, William J.; Warren, Wesley C.

    2014-01-01

    Little is known about the genetic changes that distinguish domestic cat populations from their wild progenitors. Here we describe a high-quality domestic cat reference genome assembly and comparative inferences made with other cat breeds, wildcats, and other mammals. Based upon these comparisons, we identified positively selected genes enriched for genes involved in lipid metabolism that underpin adaptations to a hypercarnivorous diet. We also found positive selection signals within genes underlying sensory processes, especially those affecting vision and hearing in the carnivore lineage. We observed an evolutionary tradeoff between functional olfactory and vomeronasal receptor gene repertoires in the cat and dog genomes, with an expansion of the feline chemosensory system for detecting pheromones at the expense of odorant detection. Genomic regions harboring signatures of natural selection that distinguish domestic cats from their wild congeners are enriched in neural crest-related genes associated with behavior and reward in mouse models, as predicted by the domestication syndrome hypothesis. Our description of a previously unidentified allele for the gloving pigmentation pattern found in the Birman breed supports the hypothesis that cat breeds experienced strong selection on specific mutations drawn from random bred populations. Collectively, these findings provide insight into how the process of domestication altered the ancestral wildcat genome and build a resource for future disease mapping and phylogenomic studies across all members of the Felidae. PMID:25385592

  18. Comparative analysis of the domestic cat genome reveals genetic signatures underlying feline biology and domestication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montague, Michael J; Li, Gang; Gandolfi, Barbara; Khan, Razib; Aken, Bronwen L; Searle, Steven M J; Minx, Patrick; Hillier, LaDeana W; Koboldt, Daniel C; Davis, Brian W; Driscoll, Carlos A; Barr, Christina S; Blackistone, Kevin; Quilez, Javier; Lorente-Galdos, Belen; Marques-Bonet, Tomas; Alkan, Can; Thomas, Gregg W C; Hahn, Matthew W; Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; O'Brien, Stephen J; Wilson, Richard K; Lyons, Leslie A; Murphy, William J; Warren, Wesley C

    2014-12-02

    Little is known about the genetic changes that distinguish domestic cat populations from their wild progenitors. Here we describe a high-quality domestic cat reference genome assembly and comparative inferences made with other cat breeds, wildcats, and other mammals. Based upon these comparisons, we identified positively selected genes enriched for genes involved in lipid metabolism that underpin adaptations to a hypercarnivorous diet. We also found positive selection signals within genes underlying sensory processes, especially those affecting vision and hearing in the carnivore lineage. We observed an evolutionary tradeoff between functional olfactory and vomeronasal receptor gene repertoires in the cat and dog genomes, with an expansion of the feline chemosensory system for detecting pheromones at the expense of odorant detection. Genomic regions harboring signatures of natural selection that distinguish domestic cats from their wild congeners are enriched in neural crest-related genes associated with behavior and reward in mouse models, as predicted by the domestication syndrome hypothesis. Our description of a previously unidentified allele for the gloving pigmentation pattern found in the Birman breed supports the hypothesis that cat breeds experienced strong selection on specific mutations drawn from random bred populations. Collectively, these findings provide insight into how the process of domestication altered the ancestral wildcat genome and build a resource for future disease mapping and phylogenomic studies across all members of the Felidae.

  19. Theories and models on the biological of cells in space

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd, P.; Klaus, D. M.

    1996-01-01

    A wide variety of observations on cells in space, admittedly made under constraining and unnatural conditions in may cases, have led to experimental results that were surprising or unexpected. Reproducibility, freedom from artifacts, and plausibility must be considered in all cases, even when results are not surprising. The papers in symposium on 'Theories and Models on the Biology of Cells in Space' are dedicated to the subject of the plausibility of cellular responses to gravity -- inertial accelerations between 0 and 9.8 m/sq s and higher. The mechanical phenomena inside the cell, the gravitactic locomotion of single eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells, and the effects of inertial unloading on cellular physiology are addressed in theoretical and experimental studies.

  20. Stereotyping to infer group membership creates plausible deniability for prejudice-based aggression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cox, William T L; Devine, Patricia G

    2014-02-01

    In the present study, participants administered painful electric shocks to an unseen male opponent who was either explicitly labeled as gay or stereotypically implied to be gay. Identifying the opponent with a gay-stereotypic attribute produced a situation in which the target's group status was privately inferred but plausibly deniable to others. To test the plausible deniability hypothesis, we examined aggression levels as a function of internal (personal) and external (social) motivation to respond without prejudice. Whether plausible deniability was present or absent, participants high in internal motivation aggressed at low levels, and participants low in both internal and external motivation aggressed at high levels. The behavior of participants low in internal and high in external motivation, however, depended on experimental condition. They aggressed at low levels when observers could plausibly attribute their behavior to prejudice and aggressed at high levels when the situation granted plausible deniability. This work has implications for both obstacles to and potential avenues for prejudice-reduction efforts.

  1. The constitutional protection of trade secrets and patents under the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epstein, Richard A

    2011-01-01

    The Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009 ("Biosimilars Act") is for the field of pharmaceutical products the single most important legislative development since passage of the Drug Price Competition and Patent Term Restoration Act of 1984 ("Hatch-Waxman Act"), on which portions of the Biosimilars Act are clearly patterned. Congress revised section 351 of the Public Health Service Act (PHSA) to create a pathway for FDA approval of "biosimilar" biological products. Each biosimilar applicant is required to cite in its application a "reference product" that was approved on the basis of a full application containing testing data and manufacturing information, which is owned and was submitted by another company and much of which constitutes trade secret information subject to constitutional protection. Because the Biosimilars Act authorizes biosimilar applicants to cite these previously approved applications, the implementation of the new legislative scheme raises critical issues under the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution, pursuant to which private property--trade secrets included--may not be taken for public use, without "just compensation." FDA must confront those issues as it implements the scheme set out in the Biosimilars Act. This article will discuss these issues, after providing a brief overview of the Biosimilars Act and a more detailed examination of the law of trade secrets.

  2. Biological carbon fixation: A study of Isochrysis sp. growth under actual coal-fired power plant's flue gas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yahya, Liyana; Chik, Muhammad Nazry; Pang, Mohd Asyraf Mohd Azmir

    2013-01-01

    Preliminary study on the growth of marine microalgae Isochrysis sp. was carried out using actual flue gas from a coal-fired power station. The species was cultured using a 2×10-L customized bubble column photobioreactor skid under specified culture conditions. With an initial culture density of 0.459 Abs (optical density at 560 nm wavelength), the species was found able to survive – observed by increases in optical densities, number of cells and weights – in the presence of actual coal-fired flue gas containing on average 4.08 % O 2 , 200.21 mg/m 3 SO 2 , 212.29 mg/m 3 NO x , 4.73 % CO 2 and 50.72 mg/m 3 CO. Results thus add value to the potential and capability of microalgae, especially for Isochrysis sp., to be the biological carbon fixer in neutralizing carbon emissions from power plants.

  3. Spatio-temporal thermal kinetics of in situ MWCNT heating in biological tissues under NIR laser irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Picou, Laura; McMann, Casey; Boldor, Dorin; Elzer, Philip H; Enright, Frederick M; Biris, Alexandru S

    2010-01-01

    Carbon nanotubes have many potential applications in life sciences and engineering as they have very high absorbance in the near-infrared (NIR) spectrum, while biological tissues do not. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of 1064 nm NIR laser power levels on the spatial temperature distribution and the temperature kinetics in mammalian tissue at both macroscopic and microscopic scales. The model tissue was the 'flat' of a chicken wing (the section containing the radius and ulna), which was injected under the skin in the subcutaneous layer of tissue. Specimens were exposed to laser radiation and an infrared thermography system was used to measure and record the temperature distributions in the specimens at both the macroscopic and microscopic scales. Experimental results concluded that power levels of 1536 mW easily achieved hyperthermic temperatures with localized values as high as 172.7 deg. C.

  4. [Physico-chemical features of dinitrosyl iron complexes with natural thiol-containing ligands underlying biological activities of these complexes].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanin, A F; Borodulin, R R; Kubrina, L N; Mikoian, V D; Burbaev, D Sh

    2013-01-01

    Current notions and new experimental data of the authors on physico-chemical features of dinitrosyl iron complexes with natural thiol-containing ligands (glutathione or cysteine), underlying the ability of the complexes to act as NO molecule and nitrosonium ion donors, are considered. This ability determines various biological activities of dinitrosyl iron complexes--inducing long-lasting vasodilation and thereby long-lasting hypotension in human and animals, inhibiting pellet aggregation, increasing red blood cell elasticity, thereby stimulating microcirculation, and reducing necrotic zone in animals with myocardial infarction. Moreover, dinitrosyl iron complexes are capable of accelerating skin wound healing, improving the function of penile cavernous tissue, blocking apoptosis development in cell cultures. When decomposed dinitrosyl iron complexes can exert cytotoxic effect that can be used for curing infectious and carcinogenic pathologies.

  5. Effect of Biological and Chemical Fertilizers on Oil, Seed Yield and some Agronomic Traits of Safflower under Different Irrigation Regimes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamidreza Fanaei

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Introduction Safflower Carthamus tinctorius L. is a tolerant plant to water deficit due to long roots and capability for high water absorption from soil deeper parts. Safflower can growth successfully in regions with low soil fertility and temperature. Behdani and Mosavifar (2011 reported that drought stress affect on yield by reducing yield components and agronomic traits. Biofertilizer during a biological process chanced the nutrients from unusable to usable form for plants in soils (Aseretal, 2008. Mirzakhani et al. (2008 found that inoculation of seed with free-living bacterium azotobacter and a symbiotic fungus productive mycorrhiza addition to increasing oil and seed cause increasing resistance against two factors of unfavorable environmental and to improve quality of product. In order to study the effect of biological and chemical fertilizers on oil, seed yield and some of agronomic traits of Safflower under irrigation of different regimes an experimental design was conducted. Materials and methods In order to study the effect of biological and chemical fertilizers on oil, seed yield and some of agronomic traits of safflower under irrigation of different regimes an experiment was carried out split plot based on randomized complete block design (RCBD with three replications in experimental farm of payame-Noor university of Zabol during 2012-2013 growing season. Irrigation regime in three levels include: I1 (control irrigation in all growth stages, I2 stop irrigation from sowing to flowering (irrigation in growth stages flowering, and seed filling, I3 irrigation in growth stages rosset, stem elongation, heading and stop irrigation in flowering, and seed filling were as main plots and fertilizer resources in five levels included: F1 non application chemical fertilizer (control, F2 pure application chemical fertilizer (NPK 99, 44 and 123 kg.ha-1 respectively, F3 Nitroxin application (2 L.ha-1 F4 Azotobacter application (2 L.ha-1 and F5

  6. Synthetic biology and its alternatives. Descartes, Kant and the idea of engineering biological machines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kogge, Werner; Richter, Michael

    2013-06-01

    The engineering-based approach of synthetic biology is characterized by an assumption that 'engineering by design' enables the construction of 'living machines'. These 'machines', as biological machines, are expected to display certain properties of life, such as adapting to changing environments and acting in a situated way. This paper proposes that a tension exists between the expectations placed on biological artefacts and the notion of producing such systems by means of engineering; this tension makes it seem implausible that biological systems, especially those with properties characteristic of living beings, can in fact be produced using the specific methods of engineering. We do not claim that engineering techniques have nothing to contribute to the biotechnological construction of biological artefacts. However, drawing on Descartes's and Kant's thinking on the relationship between the organism and the machine, we show that it is considerably more plausible to assume that distinctively biological artefacts emerge within a paradigm different from the paradigm of the Cartesian machine that underlies the engineering approach. We close by calling for increased attention to be paid to approaches within molecular biology and chemistry that rest on conceptions different from those of synthetic biology's engineering paradigm. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Proteins Encoded in Genomic Regions Associated with Immune-Mediated Disease Physically Interact and Suggest Underlying Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossin, Elizabeth J.; Lage, Kasper; Raychaudhuri, Soumya; Xavier, Ramnik J.; Tatar, Diana; Benita, Yair

    2011-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have defined over 150 genomic regions unequivocally containing variation predisposing to immune-mediated disease. Inferring disease biology from these observations, however, hinges on our ability to discover the molecular processes being perturbed by these risk variants. It has previously been observed that different genes harboring causal mutations for the same Mendelian disease often physically interact. We sought to evaluate the degree to which this is true of genes within strongly associated loci in complex disease. Using sets of loci defined in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and Crohn's disease (CD) GWAS, we build protein–protein interaction (PPI) networks for genes within associated loci and find abundant physical interactions between protein products of associated genes. We apply multiple permutation approaches to show that these networks are more densely connected than chance expectation. To confirm biological relevance, we show that the components of the networks tend to be expressed in similar tissues relevant to the phenotypes in question, suggesting the network indicates common underlying processes perturbed by risk loci. Furthermore, we show that the RA and CD networks have predictive power by demonstrating that proteins in these networks, not encoded in the confirmed list of disease associated loci, are significantly enriched for association to the phenotypes in question in extended GWAS analysis. Finally, we test our method in 3 non-immune traits to assess its applicability to complex traits in general. We find that genes in loci associated to height and lipid levels assemble into significantly connected networks but did not detect excess connectivity among Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) loci beyond chance. Taken together, our results constitute evidence that, for many of the complex diseases studied here, common genetic associations implicate regions encoding proteins that physically interact in a preferential manner, in

  8. The Utility of Cognitive Plausibility in Language Acquisition Modeling: Evidence from Word Segmentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Lawrence; Pearl, Lisa

    2015-01-01

    The informativity of a computational model of language acquisition is directly related to how closely it approximates the actual acquisition task, sometimes referred to as the model's "cognitive plausibility." We suggest that though every computational model necessarily idealizes the modeled task, an informative language acquisition…

  9. High School Students' Evaluations, Plausibility (Re) Appraisals, and Knowledge about Topics in Earth Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombardi, Doug; Bickel, Elliot S.; Bailey, Janelle M.; Burrell, Shondricka

    2018-01-01

    Evaluation is an important aspect of science and is receiving increasing attention in science education. The present study investigated (1) changes to plausibility judgments and knowledge as a result of a series of instructional scaffolds, called model-evidence link activities, that facilitated evaluation of scientific and alternative models in…

  10. Preview Effects of Plausibility and Character Order in Reading Chinese Transposed Words: Evidence from Eye Movements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Jinmian

    2013-01-01

    The current paper examined the role of plausibility information in the parafovea for Chinese readers by using two-character transposed words (in which the order of the component characters is reversed but are still words). In two eye-tracking experiments, readers received a preview of a target word that was (1) identical to the target word, (2) a…

  11. The Radical Promise of Reformist Zeal: What Makes "Inquiry for Equity" Plausible?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lashaw, Amanda

    2010-01-01

    Education reform movements often promise more than they deliver. Why are such promises plausible in light of seemingly perpetual education reform? Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork based in a nonprofit education reform organization, this article explores the appeal of popular notions about "using data to close the racial achievement…

  12. Carbon exchange in biological soil crust communities under differential temperatures and soil water contents: implications for global change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grote, Edmund E.; Belnap, Jayne; Housman, David C.; Sparks, Jed P.

    2010-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are an integral part of the soil system in arid regions worldwide, stabilizing soil surfaces, aiding vascular plant establishment, and are significant sources of ecosystem nitrogen and carbon. Hydration and temperature primarily control ecosystem CO2 flux in these systems. Using constructed mesocosms for incubations under controlled laboratory conditions, we examined the effect of temperature (5-35 1C) and water content (WC, 20-100%) on CO2 exchange in light cyanobacterially dominated) and dark cyanobacteria/lichen and moss dominated) biocrusts of the cool Colorado Plateau Desert in Utah and the hot Chihuahuan Desert in New Mexico. In light crusts from both Utah and New Mexico, net photosynthesis was highest at temperatures 430 1C. Net photosynthesis in light crusts from Utah was relatively insensitive to changes in soil moisture. In contrast, light crusts from New Mexico tended to exhibit higher rates of net photosynthesis at higher soil moisture. Dark crusts originating from both sites exhibited the greatest net photosynthesis at intermediate soil water content (40-60%). Declines in net photosynthesis were observed in dark crusts with crusts from Utah showing declines at temperatures 425 1C and those originating from New Mexico showing declines at temperatures 435 1C. Maximum net photosynthesis in all crust types from all locations were strongly influenced by offsets in the optimal temperature and water content for gross photosynthesis compared with dark respiration. Gross photosynthesis tended to be maximized at some intermediate value of temperature and water content and dark respiration tended to increase linearly. The results of this study suggest biocrusts are capable of CO2 exchange under a wide range of conditions. However, significant changes in the magnitude of this exchange should be expected for the temperature and precipitation changes suggested by current climate models.

  13. Physical, chemical, and biological properties of soil under soybean cultivation and at an adjacent rainforest in Amazonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Troy Patrick Beldini

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Land-use change in the Amazon basin has occurred at an accelerated pace during the last decade, and it is important that the effects induced by these changes on soil properties are better understood. This study investigated the chemical, physical, and biological properties of soil in a field under cultivation of soy and rice, and at an adjacent primary rain forest. Increases in soil bulk density, exchangeable cations and pH were observed in the soy field soil. In the primary forest, soil microbial biomass and basal respiration rates were higher, and the microbial community was metabolically more efficient. The sum of basal respiration across the A, AB and BA horizons on a mass per area basis ranged from 7.31 to 10.05 Mg CO2-C ha-1yr-1, thus yielding estimates for total soil respiration between 9.6 and 15.5 Mg CO2-C ha-1yr-1 across sites and seasons. These estimates are in good agreement with literature values for Amazonian ecosystems. The estimates of heterotrophic respiration made in this study help to further constrain the estimates of autotrophic soil respiration and will be useful for monitoring the effects of future land-use in Amazonian ecosystems.

  14. Dryland biological soil crust cyanobacteria show unexpected decreases in abundance under long-term elevated CO2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steven, Blaire; Gallegos-Graves, La Verne; Yeager, Chris M.; Belnap, Jayne; Evans, R. David; Kuske, Cheryl R.

    2012-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) cover soil surfaces in many drylands globally. The impacts of 10 years of elevated atmospheric CO2 on the cyanobacteria in biocrusts of an arid shrubland were examined at a large manipulated experiment in Nevada, USA. Cyanobacteria-specific quantitative PCR surveys of cyanobacteria small-subunit (SSU) rRNA genes suggested a reduction in biocrust cyanobacterial biomass in the elevated CO2 treatment relative to the ambient controls. Additionally, SSU rRNA gene libraries and shotgun metagenomes showed reduced representation of cyanobacteria in the total microbial community. Taxonomic composition of the cyanobacteria was similar under ambient and elevated CO2 conditions, indicating the decline was manifest across multiple cyanobacterial lineages. Recruitment of cyanobacteria sequences from replicate shotgun metagenomes to cyanobacterial genomes representing major biocrust orders also suggested decreased abundance of cyanobacteria sequences across the majority of genomes tested. Functional assignment of cyanobacteria-related shotgun metagenome sequences indicated that four subsystem categories, three related to oxidative stress, were differentially abundant in relation to the elevated CO2 treatment. Taken together, these results suggest that elevated CO2 affected a generalized decrease in cyanobacteria in the biocrusts and may have favoured cyanobacteria with altered gene inventories for coping with oxidative stress.

  15. Do new Access and Benefit Sharing procedures under the Convention on Biological Diversity threaten the future of biological control? Supplemental material (case studies, natural enemy releases, country views concerning ABS)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cock, M.J.W.; Lenteren, van J.C.; Brodeur, J.; Barratt, I.P.; Bigler, F.; Bolckmans, K.; Cônsoli, F.L.; Haas, F.; Mason, P.G.; Parra, J.R.P.

    2010-01-01

    Under the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) countries have sovereign rights over their genetic resources. Agreements governing the access to these resources and the sharing of the benefits arising from their use need to be established between involved parties [i.e. Access and Benefit Sharing

  16. Biological soil crust formation under artificial vegetation effect and its properties in the Mugetan sandy land, northeastern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Y. F.; Li, Z. W.; Jia, Y. H.; Zhang, K.

    2016-08-01

    Mugetan sandy land is an inland desertification area of about 2,065 km2 in the northeastern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. In the ecological restoration region of the Mugetan sandy land, different crusts have formed under the action of vegetation in three types of sandy soil (i.e. semi-fixed sand dune, fixed sand dune and ancient fixed aeolian sandy soil). The surface sand particle distribution, mineral component and vegetation composition of moving sand dunes and three types of sandy soil were studied in 2010-2014 to analyze the biological crust formation properties in the Mugetan sandy land and the effects of artificial vegetation. Results from this study revealed that artificial vegetation increases the clay content and encourages the development of biological curst. The fine particles (i.e. clay and humus) of the surface layer of the sand dunes increased more than 15% ten years after the artificial vegetation planting, and further increased up to 20% after one hundred years. The interaction of clay, humus, and other fine particles formed the soil aggregate structure. Meanwhile, under the vegetation effect from the microbes, algae, and moss, the sand particles stuck together and a biological crust formed. The interconnection of the partial crusts caused the sand dunes to gradually be fixed as a whole. Maintaining the integrity of the biological crust plays a vital role in fixing the sand under the crust. The precipitation and temperature conditions in the Mugetan sandy land could satisfy the demand of biological crust formation and development. If rational vegetation measures are adopted in the region with moving sand dunes, the lichen-moss-algae biological curst will form after ten years, but it still takes more time for the sand dunes to reach the nutrient enrichment state. If the biological curst is partly broken due to human activities, reasonable closure and restoration measures can shorten the restoration time of the biological crust.

  17. From information processing to decisions: Formalizing and comparing psychologically plausible choice models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heck, Daniel W; Hilbig, Benjamin E; Moshagen, Morten

    2017-08-01

    Decision strategies explain how people integrate multiple sources of information to make probabilistic inferences. In the past decade, increasingly sophisticated methods have been developed to determine which strategy explains decision behavior best. We extend these efforts to test psychologically more plausible models (i.e., strategies), including a new, probabilistic version of the take-the-best (TTB) heuristic that implements a rank order of error probabilities based on sequential processing. Within a coherent statistical framework, deterministic and probabilistic versions of TTB and other strategies can directly be compared using model selection by minimum description length or the Bayes factor. In an experiment with inferences from given information, only three of 104 participants were best described by the psychologically plausible, probabilistic version of TTB. Similar as in previous studies, most participants were classified as users of weighted-additive, a strategy that integrates all available information and approximates rational decisions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. L’Analyse du Risque Géopolitique: du Plausible au Probable

    OpenAIRE

    Adib Bencherif

    2015-01-01

    This paper is going to explore the logical process behind risk analysis, particularly in geopolitics. The main goal is to demonstrate the ambiguities behind risk calculation and to highlight the continuum between plausibility and probability in risk analysis. To demonstrate it, the author introduces two notions: the inference of abduction, often neglected in the social sciences literature, and the Bayesian calculation. Inspired by the works of Louise Amoore, this paper tries to go further by ...

  19. Resolution of cosmological singularity and a plausible mechanism of the big bang

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Choudhury, D.C.

    2002-01-01

    The initial cosmological singularity in the framework of the general theory of relativity is resolved by introducing the effect of the uncertainty principle of quantum theory without violating conventional laws of physics. A plausible account of the mechanism of the big bang, analogous to that of a nuclear explosion, is given and the currently accepted Planck temperature of ≅10 32 K at the beginning of the big bang is predicted

  20. Cumulative and Synergistic Effects of Physical, Biological, and Acoustic Signals on Marine Mammal Habitat Use Physical Oceanography Component: Soundscapes Under Sea Ice: Can We Listen for Open Water?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-30

    Physical, Biological, and Acoustic Signals on Marine Mammal Habitat Use Physical Oceanography Component: Soundscapes Under Sea Ice: Can we listen for... Soundscapes Under Sea Ice: Can we listen for open water? 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) 5d...the source. These different sounds can be described as “ soundscapes ”, and graphically represented by comparing two or more features of the sound

  1. SulfoSYS (Sulfolobus Systems Biology): towards a silicon cell model for the central carbohydrate metabolism of the archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus under temperature variation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Albers, S.V.; Birkeland, N.K.; Driessen, A.J.M.; Gertig, S.; Haferkamp, P.; Klenk, H.P.; Kouril, T.; Manica, A.; Pham, T.K.; Ruoff, P.; Schleper, C.; Schomburg, D.; Sharkey, K.; Siebers, B.; Sierocinski, P.; Steur, R.; Oost, van der J.; Westerhoff, H.V.; Wieloch, P.; Wright, P.C.; Zaparty, M.

    2009-01-01

    SulfoSYS (Sulfolobus Systems Biology) focuses on the study of the CCM (central carbohydrate metabolism) of Sulfolobus solfataricus and its regulation under temperature variation at the systems level. In Archaea, carbohydrates are metabolized by modifications of the classical pathways known from

  2. Sulfosys (Sulfolobus Systems Biology): towards a silicon cell model for the central carbohydrate metabolism of the archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus under temperature variation.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Albers, S.V.; Birkeland, N.K.; Driessen, A.J.; Gertig, S.; Haferkamp, P.; Klenk, H.P.; Kouril, T.; Manica, A.; Pham, T.K.; Ruoff, P.; Schleper, C.; Schomburg, D.; Sharkey, K.J.; Siebers, B.; Sierocinski, P.; Steuer, R.; van der Oost, J.; Westerhoff, H.V.; Wieloch, P.; Wright, P.C.; Zaparty, M.

    2009-01-01

    SulfoSYS (Sulfolobus Systems Biology) focuses on the study of the CCM (central carbohydrate metabolism) of Sulfolobus solfataricus and its regulation under temperature variation at the systems level. In Archaea, carbohydrates are metabolized by modifications of the classical pathways known from

  3. SulfoSYS (Sulfolobus Systems Biology) : towards a silicon cell model for the central carbohydrate metabolism of the archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus under temperature variation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Albers, Sonja-Verena; Birkeland, Nils-Kare; Driessen, Arnold J. M.; Gertig, Susanne; Haferkamp, Patrick; Klenk, Hans-Peter; Kouril, Theresa; Manica, Andrea; Pham, Trong K.; Ruoff, Peter; Schleper, Christa; Schomburg, Dietmar; Sharkey, Kieran J.; Siebers, Bettina; Sierocinski, Pawel; Steuer, Ralf; van der Oost, John; Westerhoff, Hans V.; Wieloch, Patricia; Wright, Phillip C.; Zaparty, Melanie; Birkeland, Nils-Kåre

    SulfoSYS (Sulfolobus Systems Biology) focuses on the study of the CCM (central carbohydrate metabolism) of Sulfolobus solfataricus and its regulation under temperature variation at the systems level. in Archaea, carbohydrates are metabolized by modifications of the classical pathways known from

  4. Effective Teacher Practice on the Plausibility of Human-Induced Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niepold, F.; Sinatra, G. M.; Lombardi, D.

    2013-12-01

    Climate change education programs in the United States seek to promote a deeper understanding of the science of climate change, behavior change and stewardship, and support informed decision making by individuals, organizations, and institutions--all of which are summarized under the term 'climate literacy.' The ultimate goal of climate literacy is to enable actors to address climate change, both in terms of stabilizing and reducing emissions of greenhouse gases, but also an increased capacity to prepare for the consequences and opportunities of climate change. However, the long-term nature of climate change and the required societal response involve the changing students' ideas about controversial scientific issues which presents unique challenges for educators (Lombardi & Sinatra, 2010; Sinatra & Mason, 2008). This session will explore how the United States educational efforts focus on three distinct, but related, areas: the science of climate change, the human-climate interaction, and using climate education to promote informed decision making. Each of these approaches are represented in the Atlas of Science Literacy (American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2007) and in the conceptual framework for science education developed at the National Research Council (NRC) in 2012. Instruction to develop these fundamental thinking skills (e.g., critical evaluation and plausibility reappraisal) has been called for by the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) (Achieve, 2013), an innovative and research based way to address climate change education within the decentralized U.S. education system. However, the promise of the NGSS is that students will have more time to build mastery on the subjects, but the form of that instructional practice has been show to be critical. Research has show that effective instructional activities that promote evaluation of evidence improve students' understanding and acceptance toward the scientifically accepted model of human

  5. Comprehensive analysis of schizophrenia-associated loci highlights ion channel pathways and biologically plausible candidate causal genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pers, Tune H; Timshel, Pascal; Ripke, Stephan

    2016-01-01

    Over 100 associated genetic loci have been robustly associated with schizophrenia. Gene prioritization and pathway analysis have focused on a priori hypotheses and thus may have been unduly influenced by prior assumptions and missed important causal genes and pathways. Using a data-driven approac...

  6. Resolution of Cosmological Singularity and a Plausible Mechanism of the Big Bang

    OpenAIRE

    Choudhury, D. C.

    2001-01-01

    The initial cosmological singularity in the framework of the general theory of relativity is resolved by introducing the effect of the uncertainty principle of quantum theory without violating conventional laws of physics. A plausible account of the mechanism of the big bang, analogous to that of a nuclear explosion, is given and the currently accepted Planck temperature of about 10^(32)K at the beginning of the big bang is predicted. Subj-class: cosmology: theory-pre-big bang; mechanism of t...

  7. Effects of species biological traits and environmental heterogeneity on simulated tree species distribution shifts under climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen J. Wang; Hong S. He; Frank R. Thompson; Martin A. Spetich; Jacob S. Fraser

    2018-01-01

    Demographic processes (fecundity, dispersal, colonization, growth, and mortality) and their interactions with environmental changes are notwell represented in current climate-distribution models (e.g., niche and biophysical process models) and constitute a large uncertainty in projections of future tree species distribution shifts.We investigate how species biological...

  8. Does grazing of cover crops impact biologically active soil C and N fractions under inversion and no tillage management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cover crops are a key component of conservation cropping systems. They can also be a key component of integrated crop-livestock systems by offering high-quality forage during short periods between cash crops. The impact of cattle grazing on biologically active soil C and N fractions has not receiv...

  9. The Sarrazin effect: the presence of absurd statements in conspiracy theories makes canonical information less plausible.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raab, Marius Hans; Auer, Nikolas; Ortlieb, Stefan A; Carbon, Claus-Christian

    2013-01-01

    Reptile prime ministers and flying Nazi saucers-extreme and sometimes off-wall conclusion are typical ingredients of conspiracy theories. While individual differences are a common research topic concerning conspiracy theories, the role of extreme statements in the process of acquiring and passing on conspiratorial stories has not been regarded in an experimental design so far. We identified six morphological components of conspiracy theories empirically. On the basis of these content categories a set of narrative elements for a 9/11 story was compiled. These elements varied systematically in terms of conspiratorial allegation, i.e., they contained official statements concerning the events of 9/11, statements alleging to a conspiracy limited in time and space as well as extreme statements indicating an all-encompassing cover-up. Using the method of narrative construction, 30 people were given a set of cards with these statements and asked to construct the course of events of 9/11 they deem most plausible. When extreme statements were present in the set, the resulting stories were more conspiratorial; the number of official statements included in the narrative dropped significantly, whereas the self-assessment of the story's plausibility did not differ between conditions. This indicates that blatant statements in a pool of information foster the synthesis of conspiracy theories on an individual level. By relating these findings to one of Germany's most successful (and controversial) non-fiction books, we refer to the real-world dangers of this effect.

  10. Neural correlates of early-closure garden-path processing: Effects of prosody and plausibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    den Ouden, Dirk-Bart; Dickey, Michael Walsh; Anderson, Catherine; Christianson, Kiel

    2016-01-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used to investigate neural correlates of early-closure garden-path sentence processing and use of extrasyntactic information to resolve temporary syntactic ambiguities. Sixteen participants performed an auditory picture verification task on sentences presented with natural versus flat intonation. Stimuli included sentences in which the garden-path interpretation was plausible, implausible because of a late pragmatic cue, or implausible because of a semantic mismatch between an optionally transitive verb and the following noun. Natural sentence intonation was correlated with left-hemisphere temporal activation, but also with activation that suggests the allocation of more resources to interpretation when natural prosody is provided. Garden-path processing was associated with upregulation in bilateral inferior parietal and right-hemisphere dorsolateral prefrontal and inferior frontal cortex, while differences between the strength and type of plausibility cues were also reflected in activation patterns. Region of interest (ROI) analyses in regions associated with complex syntactic processing are consistent with a role for posterior temporal cortex supporting access to verb argument structure. Furthermore, ROI analyses within left-hemisphere inferior frontal gyrus suggest a division of labour, with the anterior-ventral part primarily involved in syntactic-semantic mismatch detection, the central part supporting structural reanalysis, and the posterior-dorsal part showing a general structural complexity effect.

  11. Morality Principles for Risk Modelling: Needs and Links with the Origins of Plausible Inference

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solana-Ortega, Alberto; Solana, Vicente

    2009-12-01

    In comparison with the foundations of probability calculus, the inescapable and controversial issue of how to assign probabilities has only recently become a matter of formal study. The introduction of information as a technical concept was a milestone, but the most promising entropic assignment methods still face unsolved difficulties, manifesting the incompleteness of plausible inference theory. In this paper we examine the situation faced by risk analysts in the critical field of extreme events modelling, where the former difficulties are especially visible, due to scarcity of observational data, the large impact of these phenomena and the obligation to assume professional responsibilities. To respond to the claim for a sound framework to deal with extremes, we propose a metafoundational approach to inference, based on a canon of extramathematical requirements. We highlight their strong moral content, and show how this emphasis in morality, far from being new, is connected with the historic origins of plausible inference. Special attention is paid to the contributions of Caramuel, a contemporary of Pascal, unfortunately ignored in the usual mathematical accounts of probability.

  12. Neural nets for the plausibility check of measured values in the integrated measurement and information system for the surveillance of environmental radioactivity (IMIS)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Haase, G.

    2003-01-01

    Neural nets to the plausibility check of measured values in the ''integrated measurement and information system for the surveillance of environmental radioactivity, IMIS'' is a research project supported by the Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety. A goal of this project was the automatic recognition of implausible measured values in the data base ORACLE, which measured values from surveillance of environmental radioactivity of most diverse environmental media contained. The conversion of this project [ 1 ] was realized by institut of logic, complexity and deduction systems of the university Karlsruhe under the direction of Professor Dr. Menzel, Dr. Martin Riedmueller and Martin Lauer. (orig.)

  13. Supporting Treatment Decisions in Patients with Differentiated Thyroid Carcinoma (DTC) under Radioiodine-131 Therapy: Role of Biological Dosimetry Assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fadel, A.M.; Chebel, G.M.; Di Giorgio, M.; Vallerga, M.B.; Taja, M.R.; Radl, A.; Bubniak, R.V.; Oneto, A.

    2010-01-01

    Radioiodine-131 therapy is applied in patients with differentiated thyroid carcinoma (DTC), within the therapeutic scheme following thyroidectomy, for the ablation of thyroid remnants and treatment of metastatic disease. Several approaches for the selection of a therapeutic dose were applied. The aim of this therapy is to achieve a lethal dose in the tumor tissue, without exceeding the dose of tolerance in healthy tissues (doses greater than 2 Gy in bone marrow could lead to myelotoxicity). In this work, the treatment protocol used incorporates the assessment by biological dosimetry (BD) for estimating doses to whole body and bone marrow, to tailor patient's treatment. Biological Dosimetry prospective studies conducted on samples from patients with cumulative activities, before and after each therapeutic administration, allows to evaluate DNA damage and repair capacity in peripheral blood lymphocytes. (authors)

  14. Biological Phosphorus Release and Uptake Under Alternating Anaerobic and Anoxic Conditions In a Fixed-Film Reactor

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kerrn-Jespersen, Jens Peter; Henze, Mogens; Strube, Rune

    1994-01-01

    Biological phosphorus removal was investigated in a fixed-film reactor with alternating anaerobic and anoxic conditions. The tests showed that biological phosphorus removal can be obtained in a fixed-film reactor with nitrate as oxidising agent. In the anaerobic period, 0.52 mg of PO4-P...... was released per mg of acetate taken up on an average. In the anoxic period, 2.0 mg of PO4-P was taken up per mg of NO3-N reduced on an average. The relationship between potassium released and phosphate released in the anaerobic phase was determined to be 0.37 mg K/mg P, while the relationship between...

  15. Chemical and biological properties of phosphorus-fertilized soil under legume and grass cover (Cerrado region, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcelo Fernando Pereira Souza

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The use of cover crops has been suggested as an effective method to maintain and/or increase the organic matter content, while maintaining and/or enhancing the soil physical, chemical and biological properties. The fertility of Cerrado soils is low and, consequently, phosphorus levels as well. Phosphorus is required at every metabolic stage of the plant, as it plays a role in the processes of protein and energy synthesis and influences the photosynthetic process. This study evaluated the influence of cover crops and phosphorus rates on soil chemical and biological properties after two consecutive years of common bean. The study analyzed an Oxisol in Selvíria (Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil, in a randomized block, split plot design, in a total of 24 treatments with three replications. The plot treatments consisted of cover crops (millet, pigeon pea, crotalaria, velvet bean, millet + pigeon pea, millet + crotalaria, and millet + velvet bean and one plot was left fallow. The subplots were represented by phosphorus rates applied as monoammonium phosphate (0, 60 and 90 kg ha-1 P2O5. In August 2011, the soil chemical properties were evaluated (pH, organic matter, phosphorus, potential acidity, cation exchange capacity, and base saturation as well as biological variables (carbon of released CO2, microbial carbon, metabolic quotient and microbial quotient. After two years of cover crops in rotation with common bean, the cover crop biomass had not altered the soil chemical properties and barely influenced the microbial activity. The biomass production of millet and crotalaria (monoculture or intercropped was highest. The biological variables were sensitive and responded to increasing phosphorus rates with increases in microbial carbon and reduction of the metabolic quotient.

  16. Ruminant Metabolic Systems Biology: Reconstruction and Integration of Transcriptome Dynamics Underlying Functional Responses of Tissues to Nutrition and Physiological Statea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bionaz, Massimo; Loor, Juan J.

    2012-01-01

    High-throughput ‘omics’ data analysis via bioinformatics is one key component of the systems biology approach. The systems approach is particularly well-suited for the study of the interactions between nutrition and physiological state with tissue metabolism and functions during key life stages of organisms such as the transition from pregnancy to lactation in mammals, ie, the peripartal period. In modern dairy cows with an unprecedented genetic potential for milk synthesis, the nature of the physiologic and metabolic adaptations during the peripartal period is multifaceted and involves key tissues such as liver, adipose, and mammary. In order to understand such adaptation, we have reviewed several works performed in our and other labs. In addition, we have used a novel bioinformatics approach, Dynamic Impact Approach (DIA), in combination with partly previously published data to help interpret longitudinal biological adaptations of bovine liver, adipose, and mammary tissue to lactation using transcriptomics datasets. Use of DIA with transcriptomic data from those tissues during normal physiological adaptations and in animals fed different levels of energy prepartum allowed visualization and integration of most-impacted metabolic pathways around the time of parturition. The DIA is a suitable tool for applying the integrative systems biology approach. The ultimate goal is to visualize the complexity of the systems at study and uncover key molecular players involved in the tissue’s adaptations to physiological state or nutrition. PMID:22807626

  17. Maintaining distinctions under threat: heterosexual men endorse the biological theory of sexuality when equality is the norm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falomir-Pichastor, Juan M; Hegarty, Peter

    2014-12-01

    According to social identity theory, group members sometimes react to threats to their group's distinctiveness by asserting the distinctiveness of their group. In four studies (n = 261) we tested the hypothesis that heterosexual men with a greater propensity to be threatened by homosexuality would react to egalitarian norms by endorsing biological theories of sexuality. Heterosexual men, but not women, with narrow prototypes of their gender in-group endorsed biological theories the most (Study 1). Heterosexual men with higher gender self-esteem, with heterosexist attitudes, who endorsed traditional gender roles, and with narrow prototypes of their gender in-group, endorsed the biological theories more when egalitarian norms rather than anti-egalitarian norms (Studies 2 and 3) or pro-minority ideologies that emphasized group differences (Study 4) were made salient. These findings show group-level reactive distinctiveness among members of a high-status group in a context of threat to the unique privileges that they once enjoyed. © 2013 The British Psychological Society.

  18. Realizing high-rate sulfur reduction under sulfate-rich conditions in a biological sulfide production system to treat metal-laden wastewater deficient in organic matter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Rongrong; Zhang, Liang; Zhang, Zefeng; Chen, Guang-Hao; Jiang, Feng

    2017-12-22

    Biological sulfur reduction can theoretically produce sufficient sulfide to effectively remove and recover heavy metals in the treatment of organics-deficient sulfate-rich metal-laden wastewater such as acid mine drainage and metallurgic wastewater, using 75% less organics than biological sulfate reduction. However, it is still unknown whether sulfur reduction can indeed compete with sulfate reduction, particularly under high-strength sulfate conditions. The aim of this study was to investigate the long-term feasibility of biological sulfur reduction under high sulfate conditions in a lab-scale sulfur-reducing biological sulfide production (BSP) system with sublimed sulfur added. In the 169-day trial, an average sulfide production rate (SPR) as high as 47 ± 9 mg S/L-h was achieved in the absence of sulfate, and the average SPR under sulfate-rich conditions was similar (53 ± 10 mg S/L-h) when 1300 mg S/L sulfate were fed with the influent. Interestingly, sulfate was barely reduced even at such a high strength and contributed to only 1.5% of total sulfide production. Desulfomicrobium was identified as the predominant sulfidogenic bacterium in the bioreactor. Batch tests further revealed that this sulfidogenic bacteria used elemental sulfur as the electron acceptor instead of the highly bioavailable sulfate, during which polysulfide acted as an intermediate, leading to an even higher bioavailability of sulfur than sulfate. The pathway of sulfur to sulfide conversion via polysulfide in the presence of both sulfur and sulfate was discussed. Collectively, when conditions favor polysulfide formation, sulfur reduction can be a promising and attractive technology to realize a high-rate and low-cost BSP process for treating sulfate-rich metal-laden wastewater. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Signature of Plausible Accreting Supermassive Black Holes in Mrk 261/262 and Mrk 266

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gagik Ter-Kazarian

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We address the neutrino radiation of plausible accreting supermassive black holes closely linking to the 5 nuclear components of galaxy samples of Mrk 261/262 and Mrk 266. We predict a time delay before neutrino emission of the same scale as the age of the Universe. The ultrahigh energy neutrinos are produced in superdense protomatter medium via simple (quark or pionic reactions or modified URCA processes (G. Gamow was inspired to name the process URCA after the name of a casino in Rio de Janeiro. The resulting neutrino fluxes for quark reactions are ranging from to , where is the opening parameter. For pionic and modified URCA reactions, the fluxes are and , respectively. These fluxes are highly beamed along the plane of accretion disk, peaked at ultrahigh energies, and collimated in smaller opening angle .

  20. Reciprocity-based reasons for benefiting research participants: most fail, the most plausible is problematic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sofaer, Neema

    2014-11-01

    A common reason for giving research participants post-trial access (PTA) to the trial intervention appeals to reciprocity, the principle, stated most generally, that if one person benefits a second, the second should reciprocate: benefit the first in return. Many authors consider it obvious that reciprocity supports PTA. Yet their reciprocity principles differ, with many authors apparently unaware of alternative versions. This article is the first to gather the range of reciprocity principles. It finds that: (1) most are false. (2) The most plausible principle, which is also problematic, applies only when participants experience significant net risks or burdens. (3) Seldom does reciprocity support PTA for participants or give researchers stronger reason to benefit participants than equally needy non-participants. (4) Reciprocity fails to explain the common view that it is bad when participants in a successful trial have benefited from the trial intervention but lack PTA to it. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Disrupted Signaling through the Fanconi Anemia Pathway Leads to Dysfunctional Hematopoietic Stem Cell Biology: Underlying Mechanisms and Potential Therapeutic Strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geiselhart, Anja; Lier, Amelie; Walter, Dagmar; Milsom, Michael D.

    2012-01-01

    Fanconi anemia (FA) is the most common inherited bone marrow failure syndrome. FA patients suffer to varying degrees from a heterogeneous range of developmental defects and, in addition, have an increased likelihood of developing cancer. Almost all FA patients develop a severe, progressive bone marrow failure syndrome, which impacts upon the production of all hematopoietic lineages and, hence, is thought to be driven by a defect at the level of the hematopoietic stem cell (HSC). This hypothesis would also correlate with the very high incidence of MDS and AML that is observed in FA patients. In this paper, we discuss the evidence that supports the role of dysfunctional HSC biology in driving the etiology of the disease. Furthermore, we consider the different model systems currently available to study the biology of cells defective in the FA signaling pathway and how they are informative in terms of identifying the physiologic mediators of HSC depletion and dissecting their putative mechanism of action. Finally, we ask whether the insights gained using such disease models can be translated into potential novel therapeutic strategies for the treatment of the hematologic disorders in FA patients. PMID:22675615

  2. Proteins Encoded in Genomic Regions Associated with Immune-Mediated Disease Physically Interact and Suggest Underlying Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rossin, Elizabeth J.; Hansen, Kasper Lage; Raychaudhuri, Soumya

    2011-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have defined over 150 genomic regions unequivocally containing variation predisposing to immune-mediated disease. Inferring disease biology from these observations, however, hinges on our ability to discover the molecular processes being perturbed by these r......Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have defined over 150 genomic regions unequivocally containing variation predisposing to immune-mediated disease. Inferring disease biology from these observations, however, hinges on our ability to discover the molecular processes being perturbed...... in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and Crohn's disease (CD) GWAS, we build protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks for genes within associated loci and find abundant physical interactions between protein products of associated genes. We apply multiple permutation approaches to show that these networks are more...... that the RA and CD networks have predictive power by demonstrating that proteins in these networks, not encoded in the confirmed list of disease associated loci, are significantly enriched for association to the phenotypes in question in extended GWAS analysis. Finally, we test our method in 3 non...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramu SENTHIL

    2011-05-01

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

  4. Efficiency of a bagasse substrate in a biological bed system for the degradation of glyphosate, malathion and lambda-cyhalothrin under tropical climate conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Roffignac, Laure; Cattan, Philippe; Mailloux, Julie; Herzog, David; Le Bellec, Fabrice

    2008-12-01

    After the rinsing of spray equipment, the rinsing water contains polluting products. One way to avoid pollution is to bring the rinsing water over a purification system, a biological bed. The system consists of an impermeable tub filled with a biomix substrate that facilitates biodegradation of pesticides. Usually, straw is one component of the biomix. The objective of this study was to assess the efficiency of an unusual substrate, bagasse, a residue of sugar cane, for the degradation of three pesticides, glyphosate, malathion and lambda-cyhalothrin. Results showed that more than 99% of malathion and glyphosate were degraded in 6 months. In the biological bed, the DT(50) value for malathion was 17 days, for glyphosate 33 days and for lambda-cyhalothrin 43 days. The degradation rate of aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA) residues from the degradation of glyphosate was slower than that of the other pesticides (DT(50) 69 days). Finally, the innocuousness of the biomix after 6 months of degradation was confirmed by biological tests. Although the degradation rates of the three pesticides in the present bagasse-based system were similar to those under temperate conditions, the degradation conditions were improved by comparison with those in soil under the given tropical conditions. Further benefits of this system are pesticide confinement, to avoid their dispersion in the environment by liquids or solids, and a lower overall cost. Finally, possibilities for optimising the bagasse-based system (e.g. management of the water content and nature of the biomix) are discussed.

  5. Sex ratio meiotic drive as a plausible evolutionary mechanism for hybrid male sterility.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linbin Zhang

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Biological diversity on Earth depends on the multiplication of species or speciation, which is the evolution of reproductive isolation such as hybrid sterility between two new species. An unsolved puzzle is the exact mechanism(s that causes two genomes to diverge from their common ancestor so that some divergent genes no longer function properly in the hybrids. Here we report genetic analyses of divergent genes controlling male fertility and sex ratio in two very young fruitfly species, Drosophila albomicans and D. nasuta. A majority of the genetic divergence for both traits is mapped to the same regions by quantitative trait loci mappings. With introgressions, six major loci are found to contribute to both traits. This genetic colocalization implicates that genes for hybrid male sterility have evolved primarily for controlling sex ratio. We propose that genetic conflicts over sex ratio may operate as a perpetual dynamo for genome divergence. This particular evolutionary mechanism may largely contribute to the rapid evolution of hybrid male sterility and the disproportionate enrichment of its underlying genes on the X chromosome--two patterns widely observed across animals.

  6. Sex ratio meiotic drive as a plausible evolutionary mechanism for hybrid male sterility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Linbin; Sun, Tianai; Woldesellassie, Fitsum; Xiao, Hailian; Tao, Yun

    2015-03-01

    Biological diversity on Earth depends on the multiplication of species or speciation, which is the evolution of reproductive isolation such as hybrid sterility between two new species. An unsolved puzzle is the exact mechanism(s) that causes two genomes to diverge from their common ancestor so that some divergent genes no longer function properly in the hybrids. Here we report genetic analyses of divergent genes controlling male fertility and sex ratio in two very young fruitfly species, Drosophila albomicans and D. nasuta. A majority of the genetic divergence for both traits is mapped to the same regions by quantitative trait loci mappings. With introgressions, six major loci are found to contribute to both traits. This genetic colocalization implicates that genes for hybrid male sterility have evolved primarily for controlling sex ratio. We propose that genetic conflicts over sex ratio may operate as a perpetual dynamo for genome divergence. This particular evolutionary mechanism may largely contribute to the rapid evolution of hybrid male sterility and the disproportionate enrichment of its underlying genes on the X chromosome--two patterns widely observed across animals.

  7. The apoptotic effect and the plausible mechanism of microwave radiation on rat myocardial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Wenhe; Cui, Yan; Feng, Xianmin; Li, Yan; Zhang, Wei; Xu, Junjie; Wang, Huiyan; Lv, Shijie

    2016-08-01

    Microwaves may exert adverse biological effects on the cardiovascular system at the integrated system and cellular levels. However, the mechanism underlying such effects remains poorly understood. Here, we report a previously uncharacterized mechanism through which microwaves damage myocardial cells. Rats were treated with 2450 MHz microwave radiation at 50, 100, 150, or 200 mW/cm(2) for 6 min. Microwave treatment significantly enhanced the levels of various enzymes in serum. In addition, it increased the malondialdehyde content while decreasing the levels of antioxidative stress enzymes, activities of enzyme complexes I-IV, and ATP in myocardial tissues. Notably, irradiated myocardial cells exhibited structural damage and underwent apoptosis. Furthermore, Western blot analysis revealed significant changes in expression levels of proteins involved in oxidative stress regulation and apoptotic signaling pathways, indicating that microwave irradiation could induce myocardial cell apoptosis by interfering with oxidative stress and cardiac energy metabolism. Our findings provide useful insights into the mechanism of microwave-induced damage to the cardiovascular system.

  8. Effect of Chemical and Biological Phosphorus on Antioxidant Enzymes Activity and Some Biochemical Traits of Spring Safflower (Carthamus tinctorius L. under Water Deficit Stress Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Heshmati

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available To study the effects of biological and chemical phosphorus on antioxidant enzyme activity in safflower under water deficit conditions, an experiment was conducted in 2012 at the Research Field of the Faculty of Agriculture, Shahed University, Tehran, Iran. The experimental design was a split-factorial with three replicates. The main factor was the three levels of irrigation treatment: full irrigation (irrigation up to 50% soil moisture depletion relative to field capacity, water stress in the vegetative and flowering stages (irrigation up to 75% soil moisture depletion relative to field capacity. The sub-factor was the six treatments resulting from three levels of phosphate chemical fertilizer (0, 50, and 100 kg ha-1 Triple Super Phosphate, each at two levels of Barvar-2 bio-fertilizer (with and without inoculation with Barvar-2. According to the results of our experiment, antioxidant enzyme activity is affected by high levels of chemical phosphorus when there is no inoculation with biofertilizer (Barvar 2 under water stress in the vegetative and flowering stages. The results showed that inoculation with Barvar 2 in the absence of added chemical phosphorus increases the catalase activity and soluble protein concentration under drought stress in the vegetative and flowering stages. Also, using chemical phosphorus followed by Barvar 2 led to increase in the polyphenol oxidase activity and superoxide dismutase activity under these conditions. Inoculation with Barvar 2 in the absence of added chemical phosphorus significantly decreased the amount of malondialdehyde under stress condition at the flowering stage. It was demonstrated that inoculation with a biological fertilizer (Barvar 2 followed by application of a chemical phosphorus fertilizer under drought conditions could decrease the detrimental effects of drought stress on spring safflower.

  9. Biological transformation of anthracene in soil by Pleurotus ostreatus under solid-state fermentation conditions using wheat bran and compost

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vargas, M C; Rodriguez, R; Sanchez, F; Ramirez, N

    2001-01-01

    Pleurotus ostreatus was grown in a soil mixture contaminated with anthracene, wheat bran and compost, in varying combinations. Assays with added bacteria and reinoculation of the fungus were also included. The results indicated that in many of the combinations, most of the anthracene was removed at the earliest sample time, 15 days. The most effective combination was spiked (anthracene-added) soil, fungus and compost and the addition of acclimated bacteria to this mixture inhibited anthracene removal. Analyses of extract by high-pressure liquid chromatography HPLC indicated that - anthraquinone, was the major metabolite formed. The results of this study indicate that solid-state fermentation of anthracene-contaminated soils using P. ostreatus in combination with wheat bran and compost additives can produce an accelerated rate of biological removal of anthracene from the soil

  10. The timing of biological carbon sequestration and carbon abatement in the energy sector under optimal strategies against climate risks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gitz, V.; Hourcade, J.Ch.; Ciais, Ph.

    2005-10-01

    This paper addresses the timing of the use of biological carbon sequestration and its capacity to alleviate the carbon constraint on the energy sector. We constructed a stochastic optimal control model balancing the costs of fossil emission abatement, the opportunity costs of lands allocated to afforestation, and the costs of uncertain climate damages. We show that a minor part of the sequestration potential should start immediately as a 'brake', slowing down both the rate of growth of concentrations and the rate of abatement in the energy sector. thus increasing the option value of the emission trajectories. But, most of the potential is put in reserve to be used as a 'safety valve' after the resolution of uncertainty, if a higher and faster decarbonization is required: sequestration cuts off the peaks of costs of fossil abatement and postpones the pivoting of the energy system by up to two decades. (authors)

  11. Biological in vivo dosimetry with an external measuring technique under application of a labelled DNA-precursor (iodine-125-desoxyuridine)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Porschen, W.; Zamboglou, N.; Muehlensiepen, H.; Feinendegen, L.E.

    1976-01-01

    The depression of the incorporation rate of IDU in the whole body or in the bone marrow is a sensitive indicator for a whole-body irradiation. It was found that the maximum effect is observed some 4 hours after irradiation. For this reason, bone marrow cells were labelled in vitro with IDU 4 hours after whole-body irradiation. This method proved to be extraordinarily sensitive and resulted in reproducible effects which occurred already at doses below 5 rad. All the other biological methods of dosimetry known so far are less sensitive. Although the theory explaining these results is not yet fully clarified, this method of dosimetry appears to offer practical possibilities of application. (orig.) [de

  12. A Keystone Ant Species Provides Robust Biological Control of the Coffee Berry Borer Under Varying Pest Densities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Jonathan R; Vandermeer, John; Perfecto, Ivette

    2015-01-01

    Species' functional traits are an important part of the ecological complexity that determines the provisioning of ecosystem services. In biological pest control, predator response to pest density variation is a dynamic trait that impacts the provision of this service in agroecosystems. When pest populations fluctuate, farmers relying on biocontrol services need to know how natural enemies respond to these changes. Here we test the effect of variation in coffee berry borer (CBB) density on the biocontrol efficiency of a keystone ant species (Azteca sericeasur) in a coffee agroecosystem. We performed exclosure experiments to measure the infestation rate of CBB released on coffee branches in the presence and absence of ants at four different CBB density levels. We measured infestation rate as the number of CBB bored into fruits after 24 hours, quantified biocontrol efficiency (BCE) as the proportion of infesting CBB removed by ants, and estimated functional response from ant attack rates, measured as the difference in CBB infestation between branches. Infestation rates of CBB on branches with ants were significantly lower (71%-82%) than on those without ants across all density levels. Additionally, biocontrol efficiency was generally high and did not significantly vary across pest density treatments. Furthermore, ant attack rates increased linearly with increasing CBB density, suggesting a Type I functional response. These results demonstrate that ants can provide robust biological control of CBB, despite variation in pest density, and that the response of predators to pest density variation is an important factor in the provision of biocontrol services. Considering how natural enemies respond to changes in pest densities will allow for more accurate biocontrol predictions and better-informed management of this ecosystem service in agroecosystems.

  13. 75 FR 62916 - Re-Delegation by the Under Secretary of State to the Director, Office of Chemical and Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-13

    ... effect on October 1, 2010. As used in this delegation of authority, the word ``function'' includes any... Secretary for Management and Resources, and the Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security... Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security. [FR Doc. 2010-25613 Filed 10-12-10; 8:45 am...

  14. Biological effects of plant residues with constrasting chemical compositions on plant and soil under humid tropical conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tian, G.

    1992-01-01

    A study on plant residues with contrasting chemical compositions was conducted under laboratory, growth chamber and humid tropical field conditions to understand the function of the soil fauna in the breakdown of plant residues, the cycling of nutrients, in particular nitrogen, and the

  15. Novel approach for heterocyclization: a clean and efficient synthesis and biological evaluation of 4-oxothiazolidines under microwave technique

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Desai, Krunal G.; Desai, K.R.

    2006-01-01

    A new selective method has been developed for rapid synthesis of 2-(aryl)-3-[2-benzoimidazolythio)-acetamidyl]-4-oxothiazolidines 4a-j by the heterocyclization of 2-{(1H-benzemidazol)-ylthio}-N-benzylidene aceto hydrazide 3a-j with HSCH2COOH under microwave irradiation (MWI) is described. The reaction rate and yield is enhanced tremendously under MWI as compared to conventional methods. All the compounds have been screened for their antifungal activity against Candida albicans and Aspergillus niger, antibacterial activity against Escherchia coli and Staphylococcus aureus. In the primary screening, some of the compounds exhibited appreciable activity. The structures of the synthesized compounds 4a-j have been characterized on the basis of their elemental analysis, IR, HNMR and Mass spectral data. (author)

  16. Physical, Chemical, and Biological Properties of Soil under Decaying Wood in a Tropical Wet Forest in Puerto Rico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcela Zalamea; Grizelle Gonzalez; D. Jean Lodge

    2016-01-01

    Decaying wood is related to nutrient cycling through its role as either a sink or source of nutrients. However, at micro scales, what is the effect of decaying logs on the physical, chemical,and biotic characteristics of the soil underneath? We took samples from a 0 to 5 cm depth under and a 50 cm distance away from decaying logs (Dacryodes excelsa and Swietenia...

  17. Study on toxigenic fungi in ruminant feeds under desert conditions with special references to its biological control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shimaa M.S. Hegazy

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available A total of 435 samples from feedstuff (130 samples of commercial ration feed storage from 1–30 days, 77 samples of commercial ration stored higher than 30 days, 57 samples from each of, derris, grind mixture, Tibn and wheat bran were collected from the feed store houses of private farms located at the desert regions of Ras Sudr at South Sinai and Elameria area at Alexandria Governorate, from December 2012 to May 2014. The collected samples were analyzed for fungal growth. The results revealed that, the main moulds observed in the ruminant feeds were Penicillium spp., Aspergillus (A flavus, Cladosporium spp., Mucor spp., Trichoderma spp., A. niger, Alternaria spp., Rhizopus spp., Fusarium spp., A. fumigates and A. terreus. In addition, the winter season was of higher incidence for moulds isolation than summer season. The most toxigenic aflatoxins secreted by Aspergillus flavus include Aflatoxin B1, Aflatoxin B2, Aflatoxin G1 and Aflatoxin G2. The results of biological treatment of Aflatoxins using Saccharomyces (S cerevisiae, showed that, the addition of Saccharomyces cerevisiae at a level of (1 × 106 cfu.ml−1 and (1 × 109 cfu.ml−1 decreased the level of concentration of aflatoxin B1, B2, G1 and G2 and the level of (1 × 109 cfu.ml−1 was more efficient in reducing aflatoxins than the lower concentration.

  18. On the plausibility of socioeconomic mortality estimates derived from linked data: a demographic approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lerch, Mathias; Spoerri, Adrian; Jasilionis, Domantas; Viciana Fernandèz, Francisco

    2017-07-14

    Reliable estimates of mortality according to socioeconomic status play a crucial role in informing the policy debate about social inequality, social cohesion, and exclusion as well as about the reform of pension systems. Linked mortality data have become a gold standard for monitoring socioeconomic differentials in survival. Several approaches have been proposed to assess the quality of the linkage, in order to avoid the misclassification of deaths according to socioeconomic status. However, the plausibility of mortality estimates has never been scrutinized from a demographic perspective, and the potential problems with the quality of the data on the at-risk populations have been overlooked. Using indirect demographic estimation (i.e., the synthetic extinct generation method), we analyze the plausibility of old-age mortality estimates according to educational attainment in four European data contexts with different quality issues: deterministic and probabilistic linkage of deaths, as well as differences in the methodology of the collection of educational data. We evaluate whether the at-risk population according to educational attainment is misclassified and/or misestimated, correct these biases, and estimate the education-specific linkage rates of deaths. The results confirm a good linkage of death records within different educational strata, even when probabilistic matching is used. The main biases in mortality estimates concern the classification and estimation of the person-years of exposure according to educational attainment. Changes in the census questions about educational attainment led to inconsistent information over time, which misclassified the at-risk population. Sample censuses also misestimated the at-risk populations according to educational attainment. The synthetic extinct generation method can be recommended for quality assessments of linked data because it is capable not only of quantifying linkage precision, but also of tracking problems in

  19. Virtual Neurorobotics (VNR) to Accelerate Development of Plausible Neuromorphic Brain Architectures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodman, Philip H; Buntha, Sermsak; Zou, Quan; Dascalu, Sergiu-Mihai

    2007-01-01

    Traditional research in artificial intelligence and machine learning has viewed the brain as a specially adapted information-processing system. More recently the field of social robotics has been advanced to capture the important dynamics of human cognition and interaction. An overarching societal goal of this research is to incorporate the resultant knowledge about intelligence into technology for prosthetic, assistive, security, and decision support applications. However, despite many decades of investment in learning and classification systems, this paradigm has yet to yield truly "intelligent" systems. For this reason, many investigators are now attempting to incorporate more realistic neuromorphic properties into machine learning systems, encouraged by over two decades of neuroscience research that has provided parameters that characterize the brain's interdependent genomic, proteomic, metabolomic, anatomic, and electrophysiological networks. Given the complexity of neural systems, developing tenable models to capture the essence of natural intelligence for real-time application requires that we discriminate features underlying information processing and intrinsic motivation from those reflecting biological constraints (such as maintaining structural integrity and transporting metabolic products). We propose herein a conceptual framework and an iterative method of virtual neurorobotics (VNR) intended to rapidly forward-engineer and test progressively more complex putative neuromorphic brain prototypes for their ability to support intrinsically intelligent, intentional interaction with humans. The VNR system is based on the viewpoint that a truly intelligent system must be driven by emotion rather than programmed tasking, incorporating intrinsic motivation and intentionality. We report pilot results of a closed-loop, real-time interactive VNR system with a spiking neural brain, and provide a video demonstration as online supplemental material.

  20. Virtual neurorobotics (VNR to accelerate development of plausible neuromorphic brain architectures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philip H Goodman

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Traditional research in artificial intelligence and machine learning has viewed the brain as a specially adapted information-processing system. More recently the field of social robotics has been advanced to capture the important dynamics of human cognition and interaction. An overarching societal goal of this research is to incorporate the resultant knowledge about intelligence into technology for prosthetic, assistive, security, and decision support applications. However, despite many decades of investment in learning and classification systems, this paradigm has yet to yield truly “intelligent” systems. For this reason, many investigators are now attempting to incorporate more realistic neuromorphic properties into machine learning systems, encouraged by over two decades of neuroscience research that has provided parameters that characterize the brain’s interdependent genomic, proteomic, metabolomic, anatomic, and electrophysiological networks. Given the complexity of neural systems, developing tenable models to capture the essence of natural intelligence for real-time application requires that we discriminate features underlying information processing and intrinsic motivation from those reflecting biological constraints (such as maintaining structural integrity and transporting metabolic products. We propose herein a conceptual framework and an iterative method of virtual neurorobotics (VNR intended to rapidly forward-engineer and test progressively more complex putative neuromorphic brain prototypes for their ability to support intrinsically intelligent, intentional interaction with humans. The VNR system is based on the viewpoint that a truly intelligent system must be driven by emotion rather than programmed tasking, incorporating intrinsic motivation and intentionality. We report pilot results of a closed-loop, real-time interactive VNR system with a spiking neural brain, and provide a video demonstration as online supplemental

  1. Petroleum contamination impact on macrobenthic communities under the influence of an oil refinery: Integrating chemical and biological multivariate data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venturini, Natalia; Muniz, Pablo; Bícego, Márcia C.; Martins, César C.; Tommasi, Luiz Roberto

    2008-07-01

    ratios and specific compound concentrations with biological data to improve the assessment of anthropogenic impact on marine ecosystems.

  2. Transients and cooperative action of β-carotine, vitamine E and vitamine C in biological systems in vitro under irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Getof, N.; Platzer, I.; Winkelbauer, C.

    1998-01-01

    Complete text of publication follows. In the scope of clinical studies in the USA it has been established that β-carotine (β car) and vitamine A (vit A; retinol) give rise to lung cancer and cardiovascular diseases on humans. The consumption of vitamine E (vit E) and β-carotine provokes lung cancer and other types of tumors on male smokers. This effect increases even significantly by a simultaneous consumption of alcohol. In contrary to these results there are other scientists, who did not observe any increase of the rate of lung cancer or other tumors by the consumption of β-car or vit E. Based on these contradictory statements experiments following two pathways were performed: Pulse radiolysis studies on radical cations and radical anions of β-car and vit E Investigations on baeteria (E. coli AB 1157) and cell cultures (SCC VII): their survival was studied as a function of the absorbed dose in the abscence and in the presence of the above mentioned vitamines and vitamine C (vit C). From our extensive studies we obtain following conclusions: - Metabolic changes in normal cells could probably be initiated by the radical cation of β-carotine (β-car '+) resulting from the action of β-car as an antioxidant. - Vitamine E can repair β-car '+ by electron transfer, forming the radical cation of vit E (vit E '+), whose biological action is yet unknown. - Vitamine C (ascorbate) is able to repair both, the β-caz'+ and the vit E'+ by electron transfer (cascade electron transfer), resulting in ascorbate radical, which can disproportionate to vit C and dehydroascorbic acid (DHA). The last one can be converted again enzymatically into ascorbic acid

  3. Global change and biological soil crusts: Effects of ultraviolet augmentation under altered precipitation regimes and nitrogen additions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, J.; Phillips, S.L.; Flint, S.; Money, J.; Caldwell, M.

    2008-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs), a consortium of cyanobacteria, lichens, and mosses, are essential in most dryland ecosystems. As these organisms are relatively immobile and occur on the soil surface, they are exposed to high levels of ultraviolet (UV) radiation and atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition, rising temperatures, and alterations in precipitation patterns. In this study, we applied treatments to three types of BSCs (early, medium, and late successional) over three time periods (spring, summer, and spring-fall). In the first year, we augmented UV and altered precipitation patterns, and in the second year, we augmented UV and N. In the first year, with average air temperatures, we saw little response to our treatments except quantum yield, which was reduced in dark BSCs during one of three sample times and in Collema BSCs two of three sample times. There was more response to UV augmentation the second year when air temperatures were above average. Declines were seen in 21% of the measured variables, including quantum yield, chlorophyll a, UV-protective pigments, nitrogenase activity, and extracellular polysaccharides. N additions had some negative effects on light and dark BSCs, including the reduction of quantum yield, ??-carotene, nitrogenase activity, scytonemin, and xanthophylls. N addition had no effects on the Collema BSCs. When N was added to samples that had received augmented UV, there were only limited effects relative to samples that received UV without N. These results indicate that the negative effect of UV and altered precipitation on BSCs will be heightened as global temperatures increase, and that as their ability to produce UV-protective pigments is compromised, physiological functioning will be impaired. N deposition will only ameliorate UV impacts in a limited number of cases. Overall, increases in UV will likely lead to lowered productivity and increased mortality in BSCs through time, which, in turn, will reduce their ability to contribute

  4. Influence of mating disruption on the reproductive biology of the vine mealybug, Planococcus ficus (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae), under field conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cocco, Arturo; Muscas, Enrico; Mura, Alessandra; Iodice, Andrea; Savino, Francesco; Lentini, Andrea

    2018-05-08

    Although mating disruption is increasingly being used to control the worldwide grapevine pest vine mealybug, Planococcus ficus (Signoret) (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae), its mode of action remains unclear. A three-year field experiment was carried out to investigate the effects of mating disruption on the development and reproduction of the vine mealybug. The influence of mating disruption applied over consecutive years on the pest population density was also evaluated. The percentage of ovipositing females was significantly reduced in disrupted plots by 18.8-66.2%, depending on the year. The absence of ovipositing females in disrupted plots in the autumn of the second and third year indicates the effectiveness of mating disruption throughout the whole growing season. Mating disruption consistently prolonged the pre-oviposition period in all years by up to 12.5 days. Our findings provide new insights into the mechanisms underlying the pheromone-based control of the vine mealybug and indicate that the reduction of the pest population density is due to both a decrease and delay in female mating. In addition, the population density of vine mealybugs under mating disruption decreased over years, indicating that consecutive applications of this control strategy would significantly increase the effectiveness of controlling the vine mealybug by mating disruption. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  5. Event-based plausibility immediately influences on-line language comprehension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsuki, Kazunaga; Chow, Tracy; Hare, Mary; Elman, Jeffrey L; Scheepers, Christoph; McRae, Ken

    2011-07-01

    In some theories of sentence comprehension, linguistically relevant lexical knowledge, such as selectional restrictions, is privileged in terms of the time-course of its access and influence. We examined whether event knowledge computed by combining multiple concepts can rapidly influence language understanding even in the absence of selectional restriction violations. Specifically, we investigated whether instruments can combine with actions to influence comprehension of ensuing patients of (as in Rayner, Warren, Juhuasz, & Liversedge, 2004; Warren & McConnell, 2007). Instrument-verb-patient triplets were created in a norming study designed to tap directly into event knowledge. In self-paced reading (Experiment 1), participants were faster to read patient nouns, such as hair, when they were typical of the instrument-action pair (Donna used the shampoo to wash vs. the hose to wash). Experiment 2 showed that these results were not due to direct instrument-patient relations. Experiment 3 replicated Experiment 1 using eyetracking, with effects of event typicality observed in first fixation and gaze durations on the patient noun. This research demonstrates that conceptual event-based expectations are computed and used rapidly and dynamically during on-line language comprehension. We discuss relationships among plausibility and predictability, as well as their implications. We conclude that selectional restrictions may be best considered as event-based conceptual knowledge rather than lexical-grammatical knowledge.

  6. Mindfulness and Cardiovascular Disease Risk: State of the Evidence, Plausible Mechanisms, and Theoretical Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuman-Olivier, Zev; Britton, Willoughby B.; Fresco, David M.; Desbordes, Gaelle; Brewer, Judson A.; Fulwiler, Carl

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this review is to provide (1) a synopsis on relations of mindfulness with cardiovascular disease (CVD) and major CVD risk factors, and (2) an initial consensus-based overview of mechanisms and theoretical framework by which mindfulness might influence CVD. Initial evidence, often of limited methodological quality, suggests possible impacts of mindfulness on CVD risk factors including physical activity, smoking, diet, obesity, blood pressure, and diabetes regulation. Plausible mechanisms include (1) improved attention control (e.g., ability to hold attention on experiences related to CVD risk, such as smoking, diet, physical activity, and medication adherence), (2) emotion regulation (e.g., improved stress response, self-efficacy, and skills to manage craving for cigarettes, palatable foods, and sedentary activities), and (3) self-awareness (e.g., self-referential processing and awareness of physical sensations due to CVD risk factors). Understanding mechanisms and theoretical framework should improve etiologic knowledge, providing customized mindfulness intervention targets that could enable greater mindfulness intervention efficacy. PMID:26482755

  7. Phthalates impact human health: Epidemiological evidences and plausible mechanism of action.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benjamin, Sailas; Masai, Eiji; Kamimura, Naofumi; Takahashi, Kenji; Anderson, Robin C; Faisal, Panichikkal Abdul

    2017-10-15

    Disregarding the rising alarm on the hazardous nature of various phthalates and their metabolites, ruthless usage of phthalates as plasticizer in plastics and as additives in innumerable consumer products continues due low their cost, attractive properties, and lack of suitable alternatives. Globally, in silico computational, in vitro mechanistic, in vivo preclinical and limited clinical or epidemiological human studies showed that over a dozen phthalates and their metabolites ingested passively by man from the general environment, foods, drinks, breathing air, and routine household products cause various dysfunctions. Thus, this review addresses the health hazards posed by phthalates on children and adolescents, epigenetic modulation, reproductive toxicity in women and men; insulin resistance and type II diabetes; overweight and obesity, skeletal anomalies, allergy and asthma, cancer, etc., coupled with the description of major phthalates and their general uses, phthalate exposure routes, biomonitoring and risk assessment, special account on endocrine disruption; and finally, a plausible molecular cross-talk with a unique mechanism of action. This clinically focused comprehensive review on the hazards of phthalates would benefit the general population, academia, scientists, clinicians, environmentalists, and law or policy makers to decide upon whether usage of phthalates to be continued swiftly without sufficient deceleration or regulated by law or to be phased out from earth forever. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  8. Non-specific effects of vaccines: plausible and potentially important, but implications uncertain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollard, Andrew J; Finn, Adam; Curtis, Nigel

    2017-11-01

    Non-specific effects (NSE) or heterologous effects of vaccines are proposed to explain observations in some studies that certain vaccines have an impact beyond the direct protection against infection with the specific pathogen for which the vaccines were designed. The importance and implications of such effects remain controversial. There are several known immunological mechanisms which could lead to NSE, since it is widely recognised that the generation of specific immunity is initiated by non-specific innate immune mechanisms that may also have wider effects on adaptive immune function. However, there are no published studies that demonstrate a mechanistic link between such immunological phenomena and clinically relevant NSE in humans. While it is highly plausible that some vaccines do have NSE, their magnitude and duration, and thus importance, remain uncertain. Although the WHO recently concluded that current evidence does not justify changes to immunisation policy, further studies of sufficient size and quality are needed to assess the importance of NSE for all-cause mortality. This could provide insights into vaccine immunobiology with important implications for infant health and survival. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2017. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted unless otherwise expressly granted.

  9. Developing spatially explicit footprints of plausible land-use scenarios in the Santa Cruz Watershed, Arizona and Sonora

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norman, Laura M.; Feller, Mark; Villarreal, Miguel L.

    2012-01-01

    The SLEUTH urban growth model is applied to a binational dryland watershed to envision and evaluate plausible future scenarios of land use change into the year 2050. Our objective was to create a suite of geospatial footprints portraying potential land use change that can be used to aid binational decision-makers in assessing the impacts relative to sustainability of natural resources and potential socio-ecological consequences of proposed land-use management. Three alternatives are designed to simulate different conditions: (i) a Current Trends Scenario of unmanaged exponential growth, (ii) a Conservation Scenario with managed growth to protect the environment, and (iii) a Megalopolis Scenario in which growth is accentuated around a defined international trade corridor. The model was calibrated with historical data extracted from a time series of satellite images. Model materials, methodology, and results are presented. Our Current Trends Scenario predicts the footprint of urban growth to approximately triple from 2009 to 2050, which is corroborated by local population estimates. The Conservation Scenario results in protecting 46% more of the Evergreen class (more than 150,000 acres) than the Current Trends Scenario and approximately 95,000 acres of Barren Land, Crops, Deciduous Forest (Mesquite Bosque), Grassland/Herbaceous, Urban/Recreational Grasses, and Wetlands classes combined. The Megalopolis Scenario results also depict the preservation of some of these land-use classes compared to the Current Trends Scenario, most notably in the environmentally important headwaters region. Connectivity and areal extent of land cover types that provide wildlife habitat were preserved under the alternative scenarios when compared to Current Trends.

  10. Comparison of biological stability and metabolism of CCK2 receptor targeting peptides, a collaborative project under COST BM0607

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ocak, Meltem [Innsbruck Medical University, Clinical Department of Nuclear Medicine, Innsbruck (Austria); Istanbul University, Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Pharmacy Faculty, Istanbul (Turkey); Helbok, Anna; Rangger, Christine; Decristoforo, Clemens [Innsbruck Medical University, Clinical Department of Nuclear Medicine, Innsbruck (Austria); Peitl, Petra Kolenc [University Medical Centre Ljubljana, Department for Nuclear Medicine, Ljubljana (Slovenia); Nock, Berthold A. [National Center for Scientific Research Demokritos, Molecular Radiopharmacy, Institute of Radioisotopes-Radiodiagnostic Products, Athens (Greece); Morelli, Giancarlo [University of Naples ' ' Federico II' ' and IBB-CN, Department of Biological Sciences, CIRPeB, Naples (Italy); Eek, Annemarie [Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Nijmegen (Netherlands); Sosabowski, Jane K. [Institute of Cancer, Barts and the London Queen Mary' s School of Medicine and Dentistry, Centre for Molecular Oncology and Imaging, London (United Kingdom); Breeman, W.A.P. [Erasmus MC Rotterdam, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Rotterdam (Netherlands); Reubi, Jean Claude [University of Berne, Division of Cell Biology and Experimental Cancer Research Institute of Pathology, Berne (Switzerland)

    2011-08-15

    Stability of radiolabelled cholecystokinin 2 (CCK2) receptor targeting peptides has been a major limitation in the use of such radiopharmaceuticals especially for targeted radionuclide therapy applications, e.g. for treatment of medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC). The purpose of this study was to compare the in vitro stability of a series of peptides binding to the CCK2 receptor [selected as part of the COST Action on Targeted Radionuclide Therapy (BM0607)] and to identify major cleavage sites. Twelve different 1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-N,N',N'',N'''-tetraacetic acid (DOTA)-minigastrin/CCK conjugates were provided within an European COST Action (BM0607) by different laboratories and radiolabelled with {sup 177}Lu. Their in vitro stabilities were tested in fresh human serum. Radiochemical yields (RCY) and intact radioligands for half-life calculations were determined by radio-HPLC. Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionisation time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) analysis of metabolites was performed to identify cleavage products using conjugates labelled with excess stable {sup nat}Lu, incubated in serum at 37 C. Urine metabolite analysis after injection in normal mice was performed by radio-HPLC analysis. Variable stability in human serum was found for the different peptides with calculated half-lives between 4.5 {+-} 0.1 h and 198 {+-} 0.1 h (n = 2). In urine of normal mice only metabolised peptide fragments were detected even at short times after injection for all peptides. MALDI-TOF MS revealed a major cleavage site of all minigastrin derivatives between Asp and Phe-NH{sub 2} at the C-terminal end. Development of CCK2 receptor ligands especially for therapeutic purposes in patients with MTC or small cell lung cancer (SCLC) is still ongoing in different laboratories. This comparative study provided valuable insight into the importance of biological stability especially in the context of other results of this comparative

  11. Semantics-based plausible reasoning to extend the knowledge coverage of medical knowledge bases for improved clinical decision support.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohammadhassanzadeh, Hossein; Van Woensel, William; Abidi, Samina Raza; Abidi, Syed Sibte Raza

    2017-01-01

    Capturing complete medical knowledge is challenging-often due to incomplete patient Electronic Health Records (EHR), but also because of valuable, tacit medical knowledge hidden away in physicians' experiences. To extend the coverage of incomplete medical knowledge-based systems beyond their deductive closure, and thus enhance their decision-support capabilities, we argue that innovative, multi-strategy reasoning approaches should be applied. In particular, plausible reasoning mechanisms apply patterns from human thought processes, such as generalization, similarity and interpolation, based on attributional, hierarchical, and relational knowledge. Plausible reasoning mechanisms include inductive reasoning , which generalizes the commonalities among the data to induce new rules, and analogical reasoning , which is guided by data similarities to infer new facts. By further leveraging rich, biomedical Semantic Web ontologies to represent medical knowledge, both known and tentative, we increase the accuracy and expressivity of plausible reasoning, and cope with issues such as data heterogeneity, inconsistency and interoperability. In this paper, we present a Semantic Web-based, multi-strategy reasoning approach, which integrates deductive and plausible reasoning and exploits Semantic Web technology to solve complex clinical decision support queries. We evaluated our system using a real-world medical dataset of patients with hepatitis, from which we randomly removed different percentages of data (5%, 10%, 15%, and 20%) to reflect scenarios with increasing amounts of incomplete medical knowledge. To increase the reliability of the results, we generated 5 independent datasets for each percentage of missing values, which resulted in 20 experimental datasets (in addition to the original dataset). The results show that plausibly inferred knowledge extends the coverage of the knowledge base by, on average, 2%, 7%, 12%, and 16% for datasets with, respectively, 5%, 10%, 15

  12. Bio-physically plausible visualization of highly scattering fluorescent neocortical models for in silico experimentation

    KAUST Repository

    Abdellah, Marwan; Bilgili, Ahmet; Eilemann, Stefan; Shillcock, Julian; Markram, Henry; Schü rmann, Felix

    2017-01-01

    to visualize the results of their virtual experiments that are performed in computer simulations, or in silico. The impact of the presented pipeline opens novel avenues for assisting the neuroscientists to build biologically accurate models of the brain

  13. Larval food quantity affects development time, survival and adult biological traits that influence the vectorial capacity of Anopheles darlingi under laboratory conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araújo, Maisa da-Silva; Gil, Luiz Herman S; e-Silva, Alexandre de-Almeida

    2012-08-02

    The incidence of malaria in the Amazon is seasonal and mosquito vectorial capacity parameters, including abundance and longevity, depend on quantitative and qualitative aspects of the larval diet. Anopheles darlingi is a major malaria vector in the Amazon, representing >95% of total Anopheles population present in the Porto Velho region. Despite its importance in the transmission of the Plasmodium parasite, knowledge of the larval biology and ecology is limited. Studies regarding aspects of adult population ecology are more common than studies on larval ecology. However, in order develop effective control strategies and laboratory breeding conditions for this species, more data on the factors affecting vector biology is needed. The aim of the present study is to assess the effects of larval food quantity on the vectorial capacity of An. darling under laboratory conditions. Anopheles darlingi was maintained at 28°C, 80% humidity and exposed to a daily photoperiod of 12 h. Larvae were divided into three experimental groups that were fed either a low, medium, or high food supply (based on the food amounts consumed by other species of culicids). Each experiment was replicated for six times. A cohort of adults were also exposed to each type of diet and assessed for several biological characteristics (e.g. longevity, bite frequency and survivorship), which were used to estimate the vectorial capacity of each experimental group. The group supplied with higher food amounts observed a reduction in development time while larval survival increased. In addition to enhanced longevity, increasing larval food quantity was positively correlated with increasing frequency of bites, longer blood meal duration and wing length, resulting in greater vectorial capacity. However, females had greater longevity than males despite having smaller wings. Overall, several larval and adult biological traits were significantly affected by larval food availability. Greater larval food supply

  14. Quantum Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Sergi

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available A critical assessment of the recent developmentsof molecular biology is presented.The thesis that they do not lead to a conceptualunderstanding of life and biological systems is defended.Maturana and Varela's concept of autopoiesis is briefly sketchedand its logical circularity avoided by postulatingthe existence of underlying living processes,entailing amplification from the microscopic to the macroscopic scale,with increasing complexity in the passage from one scale to the other.Following such a line of thought, the currently accepted model of condensed matter, which is based on electrostatics and short-ranged forces,is criticized. It is suggested that the correct interpretationof quantum dispersion forces (van der Waals, hydrogen bonding, and so onas quantum coherence effects hints at the necessity of includinglong-ranged forces (or mechanisms for them incondensed matter theories of biological processes.Some quantum effects in biology are reviewedand quantum mechanics is acknowledged as conceptually important to biology since withoutit most (if not all of the biological structuresand signalling processes would not even exist. Moreover, it is suggested that long-rangequantum coherent dynamics, including electron polarization,may be invoked to explain signal amplificationprocess in biological systems in general.

  15. Evaluation of heart tissue viability under redox-magnetohydrodynamics conditions: toward fine-tuning flow in biological microfluidics applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheah, Lih Tyng; Fritsch, Ingrid; Haswell, Stephen J; Greenman, John

    2012-07-01

    A microfluidic system containing a chamber for heart tissue biopsies, perfused with Krebs-Henseleit buffer containing glucose and antibiotic (KHGB) using peristaltic pumps and continuously stimulated, was used to evaluate tissue viability under redox-magnetohydrodynamics (redox-MHD) conditions. Redox-MHD possesses unique capabilities to control fluid flow using ionic current from oxidation and reduction processes at electrodes in a magnetic field, making it attractive to fine-tune fluid flow around tissues for "tissue-on-a-chip" applications. The manuscript describes a parallel setup to study two tissue samples simultaneously, and 6-min static incubation with Triton X100. Tissue viability was subsequently determined by assaying perfusate for lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) activity, where LDH serves as an injury marker. Incubation with KHGB containing 5 mM hexaammineruthenium(III) (ruhex) redox species with and without a pair of NdFeB magnets (∼ 0.39 T, placed parallel to the chamber) exhibited no additional tissue insult. MHD fluid flow, viewed by tracking microbeads with microscopy, occurred only when the magnet was present and stimulating electrodes were activated. Pulsating MHD flow with a frequency similar to the stimulating waveform was superimposed over thermal convection (from a hotplate) for Triton-KHGB, but fluid speed was up to twice as fast for ruhex-Triton-KHGB. A large transient ionic current, achieved when switching on the stimulating electrodes, generates MHD perturbations visible over varying peristaltic flow. The well-controlled flow methodology of redox-MHD is applicable to any tissue type, being useful in various drug uptake and toxicity studies, and can be combined equally with on- or off-device analysis modalities. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Investigating a potential biological treatment to prevent pathological fractures caused by unicameral bone cysts in children under 8 years.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos-Pascua, Luis R; Sánchez-Herraéz, Sergio; Casas-Ramos, Paula; Molnar Fuentes, Sebastián; Santos Sánchez, José Ángel

    2014-10-01

    There is no consensus on when and how to treat unicameral bone cysts (UBCs), partly because of a lack of knowledge of the aetiology. To review the different treatment techniques for UBCs and to describe our results with a single injection of autogenous bone marrow (BM) mixed with demineralised bone matrix (DBM) in very young children. We reviewed five patients under the age of 8 years with UBCs treated by percutaneous aspiration and a single injection of BM associated with DBM. The cyst was located in the proximal humerus in four patients and in the proximal femur in one patient. Assessment of the need for surgery was based on the clinical and radiographic suspicion of new pathological fractures. The administration of a second injection, when necessary, was based on the surgeon's judgement regarding the risk of fracture. The mean follow-up after first injection was 41 months. There were no complications related to the procedure, except a non-displaced fracture, which healed without problems. All patients were pain free and progressively resumed their activities without restriction until a new fracture occurred in two cases. According to Capanna's classification, only one case healed completely (grade 1), one lesion was classified as grade 2, and there were three recurrences at 11, 12 and 27 months after initial treatment (grade 3). The final outcome was treatment failure for three out of the five patients. Two patients were treated with a second injection and one patient is waiting for surgery. A single injection of aspirated autogenous BM mixed with DBM in very young children with active UBCs at risk of fracture is very simple, comfortable and safe. Nevertheless, the results seem to be unpredictable and are probably more dependent on the natural evolution of the cyst than on the treatment. Further comparative studies with larger sample numbers are needed.

  17. Evaporative water loss is a plausible explanation for mortality of bats from white-nose syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willis, Craig K R; Menzies, Allyson K; Boyles, Justin G; Wojciechowski, Michal S

    2011-09-01

    White-nose syndrome (WNS) has caused alarming declines of North American bat populations in the 5 years since its discovery. Affected bats appear to starve during hibernation, possibly because of disruption of normal cycles of torpor and arousal. The importance of hydration state and evaporative water loss (EWL) for influencing the duration of torpor bouts in hibernating mammals recently led to "the dehydration hypothesis," that cutaneous infection of the wing membranes of bats with the fungus Geomyces destructans causes dehydration which in turn, increases arousal frequency during hibernation. This hypothesis predicts that uninfected individuals of species most susceptible to WNS, like little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus), exhibit high rates of EWL compared to less susceptible species. We tested the feasibility of this prediction using data from the literature and new data quantifying EWL in Natterer's bats (Myotis nattereri), a species that is, like other European bats, sympatric with G. destructans but does not appear to suffer significant mortality from WNS. We found that little brown bats exhibited significantly higher rates of normothermic EWL than did other bat species for which comparable EWL data are available. We also found that Natterer's bats exhibited significantly lower rates of EWL, in both wet and dry air, compared with values predicted for little brown bats exposed to identical relative humidity (RH). We used a population model to show that the increase in EWL required to cause the pattern of mortality observed for WNS-affected little brown bats was small, equivalent to a solitary bat hibernating exposed to RH of ∼95%, or clusters hibernating in ∼87% RH, as opposed to typical near-saturation conditions. Both of these results suggest the dehydration hypothesis is plausible and worth pursuing as a possible explanation for mortality of bats from WNS.

  18. Flux-based transport enhancement as a plausible unifying mechanism for auxin transport in meristem development.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Szymon Stoma

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Plants continuously generate new organs through the activity of populations of stem cells called meristems. The shoot apical meristem initiates leaves, flowers, and lateral meristems in highly ordered, spiralled, or whorled patterns via a process called phyllotaxis. It is commonly accepted that the active transport of the plant hormone auxin plays a major role in this process. Current hypotheses propose that cellular hormone transporters of the PIN family would create local auxin maxima at precise positions, which in turn would lead to organ initiation. To explain how auxin transporters could create hormone fluxes to distinct regions within the plant, different concepts have been proposed. A major hypothesis, canalization, proposes that the auxin transporters act by amplifying and stabilizing existing fluxes, which could be initiated, for example, by local diffusion. This convincingly explains the organised auxin fluxes during vein formation, but for the shoot apical meristem a second hypothesis was proposed, where the hormone would be systematically transported towards the areas with the highest concentrations. This implies the coexistence of two radically different mechanisms for PIN allocation in the membrane, one based on flux sensing and the other on local concentration sensing. Because these patterning processes require the interaction of hundreds of cells, it is impossible to estimate on a purely intuitive basis if a particular scenario is plausible or not. Therefore, computational modelling provides a powerful means to test this type of complex hypothesis. Here, using a dedicated computer simulation tool, we show that a flux-based polarization hypothesis is able to explain auxin transport at the shoot meristem as well, thus providing a unifying concept for the control of auxin distribution in the plant. Further experiments are now required to distinguish between flux-based polarization and other hypotheses.

  19. A plausible (overlooked) super-luminous supernova in the Sloan digital sky survey stripe 82 data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kostrzewa-Rutkowska, Zuzanna; Kozłowski, Szymon; Wyrzykowski, Łukasz; Djorgovski, S. George; Mahabal, Ashish A.; Glikman, Eilat; Koposov, Sergey

    2013-01-01

    We present the discovery of a plausible super-luminous supernova (SLSN), found in the archival data of Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Stripe 82, called PSN 000123+000504. The supernova (SN) peaked at m g < 19.4 mag in the second half of 2005 September, but was missed by the real-time SN hunt. The observed part of the light curve (17 epochs) showed that the rise to the maximum took over 30 days, while the decline time lasted at least 70 days (observed frame), closely resembling other SLSNe of SN 2007bi type. The spectrum of the host galaxy reveals a redshift of z = 0.281 and the distance modulus of μ = 40.77 mag. Combining this information with the SDSS photometry, we found the host galaxy to be an LMC-like irregular dwarf galaxy with an absolute magnitude of M B = –18.2 ± 0.2 mag and an oxygen abundance of 12+log [O/H]=8.3±0.2; hence, the SN peaked at M g < –21.3 mag. Our SLSN follows the relation for the most energetic/super-luminous SNe exploding in low-metallicity environments, but we found no clear evidence for SLSNe to explode in low-luminosity (dwarf) galaxies only. The available information on the PSN 000123+000504 light curve suggests the magnetar-powered model as a likely scenario of this event. This SLSN is a new addition to a quickly growing family of super-luminous SNe.

  20. Is knowing believing? The role of event plausibility and background knowledge in planting false beliefs about the personal past.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pezdek, Kathy; Blandon-Gitlin, Iris; Lam, Shirley; Hart, Rhiannon Ellis; Schooler, Jonathan W

    2006-12-01

    False memories are more likely to be planted for plausible than for implausible events, but does just knowing about an implausible event make individuals more likely to think that the event happened to them? Two experiments assessed the independent contributions o f plausibility a nd background knowledge to planting false beliefs. In Experiment 1, subjects rated 20 childhood events as to the likelihood of each event having happened to them. The list included the implausible target event "received an enema," a critical target event of Pezdek, Finger, and Hodge (1997). Two weeks later, subjects were presented with (1) information regarding the high prevalence rate of enemas; (2) background information on how to administer an enema; (3) neither type of information; or (4) both. Immediately or 2 weeks later, they rated the 20 childhood events again. Only plausibility significantly increased occurrence ratings. In Experiment 2, the target event was changed from "barium enema administered in a hospital" to "home enema for constipation"; significant effects of both plausibility and background knowledge resulted. The results suggest that providing background knowledge can increase beliefs about personal events, but that its impact is limited by the extent of the individual's familiarity with the context of the suggested target event.

  1. Biodiversity's big wet secret: the global distribution of marine biological records reveals chronic under-exploration of the deep pelagic ocean.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas J Webb

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Understanding the distribution of marine biodiversity is a crucial first step towards the effective and sustainable management of marine ecosystems. Recent efforts to collate location records from marine surveys enable us to assemble a global picture of recorded marine biodiversity. They also effectively highlight gaps in our knowledge of particular marine regions. In particular, the deep pelagic ocean--the largest biome on Earth--is chronically under-represented in global databases of marine biodiversity. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We use data from the Ocean Biogeographic Information System to plot the position in the water column of ca 7 million records of marine species occurrences. Records from relatively shallow waters dominate this global picture of recorded marine biodiversity. In addition, standardising the number of records from regions of the ocean differing in depth reveals that regardless of ocean depth, most records come either from surface waters or the sea bed. Midwater biodiversity is drastically under-represented. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The deep pelagic ocean is the largest habitat by volume on Earth, yet it remains biodiversity's big wet secret, as it is hugely under-represented in global databases of marine biological records. Given both its value in the provision of a range of ecosystem services, and its vulnerability to threats including overfishing and climate change, there is a pressing need to increase our knowledge of Earth's largest ecosystem.

  2. Enhanced degradation of phenolic compounds in coal gasification wastewater by a novel integration of micro-electrolysis with biological reactor (MEBR) under the micro-oxygen condition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Weiwei; Han, Yuxing; Xu, Chunyan; Han, Hongjun; Ma, Wencheng; Zhu, Hao; Li, Kun; Wang, Dexin

    2018-03-01

    The aim of this work was to study an integration of micro-electrolysis with biological reactor (MEBR) for strengthening removal of phenolic compounds in coal gasification wastewater (CGW). The results indicated MEBR achieved high efficiencies in removal of COD and phenolic compounds as well as improvement of biodegradability of CGW under the micro-oxygen condition. The integrated MEBR process was more favorable to improvement of the structural stability of activated sludge and biodiversity of specific functional microbial communities. Especially, Shewanella and Pseudomonas were enriched to accelerate the extracellular electron transfer, finally facilitating the degradation of phenolic compounds. Moreover, MEBR process effectively relieved passivation of Fe-C filler surface and prolonged lifespan of Fe-C filler. Accordingly, the synergetic effect between iron-carbon micro-electrolysis (ICME) and biological action played a significant role in performance of the integrated process. Therefore, the integrated MEBR was a promising practical process for enhancing CGW treatment. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Effect of Corm Density on Yield and Qualitative Traits of Saffron (Crocus sativus L. under Different Urea and Biological Fertilizers in Shahr-e-Rey Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alireza pazoki

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available To study the effect of corm density on yield and qualitative traits of saffron (Crocus sativus L. under different biological and chemical nitrogen fertilizers, a factorial experiment based on completely randomized block design with 3 replications was done in 2014 at Shahr-e-Rey region (Ghomi Abad. The experimental factors were: corm density in 3 levels (60, 120 and 180 corm per square meter and biological and chemical nitrogen fertilizers in 4 levels (without fertilizer application, 150 kg.ha-1 of Urea, 5 L.ha-1 of Nitroxin and 75 kg.ha-1 of Urea +5 L.ha-1 of Nitroxin. The results indicated that the corm density affects number of daughter corm, fresh daughter corm weight, corm diameter, dry stigma and style weight, dry and fresh flower weight significantly. Mean comparisons also indicated that by increasing corm density from 6o to 180, saffron dry yield of saffron improved by 2.7 fold. However, increasing corm density reduced corm diameter, fresh corm daughter weight and their numbers per square meter. It can be concluded that nitroxin as an organic fertilizer, increases vegetative traits and saffron dry yield (stigma + style weight to 2.08 kg.ha-1 and highly improves in qualitative traits like Safranal, Picrocrocin, and Crocin. It can be also said that combined use of nitroxin and urea would be an alternative method to reduce application of urea.

  4. Effects of dietary selenium and vitamin E on immune response and biological blood parameters of broilers reared under thermoneutral or heat stress conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Habibian, Mahmood; Ghazi, Shahab; Moeini, Mohammad Mehdi; Abdolmohammadi, Alireza

    2014-07-01

    A study was conducted using 360 broiler chickens to evaluate the effects of dietary vitamin E (0, 125 and 250 mg/kg), selenium (Se, 0, 0.5 and 1 mg/kg), or their different combinations on immune response and blood biological parameters of broilers raised under either thermoneutral (TN, 23.9 °C constant) or heat stress (HS, 23.9 to 37 °C cycling) conditions. Humoral immunity was assessed by intravenous injection of 7 % sheep red blood cell (SRBC) followed by evaluation of serum for antibody titers in primary and secondary responses. Heterophil to lymphocyte (H/L) ratio also determined as an indicator of stress. Furthermore, at the end of the experiment, birds were bled for determination of some biological parameters. There was a significant reduction in body weight and feed intake, but the feed conversion ratio increased when the birds were exposed to HS ( P vitamin E and Se ( P > 0.05), whereas feed conversion was improved significantly by 125 mg/kg vitamin E ( P vitamin E resulted in improvement of primary and secondary antibody responses both in TN and HS broilers ( P Vitamin E and Se had interactive effects on anti-SRBC titers; however, no consistent differences were found between dietary levels during the study. The H/L ratio decreased by feeding vitamin E at both levels either under HS or TN conditions ( P < 0.05). The serum concentrations of glucose, triglycerides, total cholesterol, and LDL-cholesterol were increased but serum HDL-cholesterol decreased in HS broilers ( P < 0.05).

  5. On the costs of self-interested economic behavior: how does stinginess get under the skin?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Elizabeth W; Ashton-James, Claire E; Hanson, Margaret D; Aknin, Lara B

    2010-05-01

    The present study examined how financial decisions 'get under the skin'. Participants played an economic game in which they could donate some of their payment to another student. Affect was measured afterward and salivary cortisol was measured before and afterward. Participants who kept more money for themselves reported less positive affect, more negative affect, and more shame. Shame predicted higher levels of post-game cortisol, controlling for pre-game cortisol; stingy economic behavior therefore produced a significant indirect effect on cortisol via shame. Thus, shame and cortisol represent plausible emotional and biological pathways linking everyday decisions with downstream consequences for health.

  6. Biología de Eretmocerus mundus (Hymenoptera: Aphelinidae, parasitoide del complejo Bemisia tabaci (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae, en condiciones de laboratorio Biology of Eretmocerus mundus (Hymenoptera: Aphelinidae, parasitoid of Bemisia tabaci complex (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae under laboratory conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yerlin Chacón Castro

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available La estimación de los atributos biológicos de un enemigo natural, previa a su empleo en el campo, constituye un aspecto de importancia en todo proyecto de control biológico. El objetivo de este trabajo fue evaluar los principales parámetros biológicos de Eretmocerus mundus Mercet, parasitoide de Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius, bajo condiciones de laboratorio.La emergencia del adulto, longevidad y fecundidad de la hembra, proporción sexual de la descendencia, tasa intrínseca de crecimiento poblacional (r m, tasa neta de reproducción (Ro y tiempo generacional (T; se estimaron mediante la técnica de tabla de vida y fecundidad, utilizando el pimiento (Capsicum annuum L. y el tomate (Solanum lycopersicum L. como plantas hospederas. Los resultados obtenidos en pimiento y tomate fueron respectivamente: supervivencia pupal: 86.86 ± 1.94 y 83,45 ± 2,13%; longevidad de la hembra: 18,19 ± 1,61 y 17,00 ± 0,92 días; proporción sexual: 0,34 ± 0,06 y 0,47 ± 0,05 hembras/(machos + hembras; l x50: 21 y 18 días; r m: 0,226 ± 0,061 y 0,228 ± 0,057 ninfas parasitadas/hembra/día; Ro: 189,71 ± 24,25 y 154,65 ± 17,58 ninfas parasitadas/hembra; T: 25,88 ± 0,42 y 24,03 ± 0,34 días. Los resultados obtenidos son una contribución al conocimiento de la población local del parasitoide y su posible papel como agente de control biológico de B. tabaci.The estimation of biological attributes of natural enemies prior to its use in the field is an important tool in a biological control program. The objective of the present paper was to evaluate the main biological parameters of Eretmocerus mundus Mercet, a parasitoid of Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius, under controlled laboratory conditions. Parasitoid survival, female longevity, fecundity, sex rate, intrinsic rate of natural increase (r m, net reproductive rate (Ro and generational time (T were studied using life tables, with pepper (Capsicum annuum L. and tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L. as host plants. Results

  7. Biological and genetic characteristics of Glyptotendipes tokunagai (Diptera: Chironomidae) on the basis of successive rearing of forty-two generations over seven years under laboratory conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baek, Min Jeong; Yoon, Tae Joong; Kang, Hyo Jeong; Bae, Yeon Jae

    2014-10-01

    Members of the nonbiting midge family Chironomidae have been used worldwide as water-quality indicators or toxicity test organisms. The purpose of this study was to establish the chironomid Glyptotendipes tokunagai Sasa as a new test species by conducting successive rearing under laboratory conditions. We monitored biological and genetic aspects of >42 successive generations over 7 yr, and also compared the development of the 39th generation with the fourth generation under five constant temperatures of 15, 20, 25, 30, and 35°C. We observed that the number of eggs in an egg mass and the adult body sizes decreased rapidly in the early generations, and thereafter tended to stabilize from the fifth generation to the 42nd generation. In all generations, the mean hatching rate was >75%. Males were predominant in the early generations, but the sex ratio increased to 0.5 (ranged 0.24-0.61) in later generations. The genetic divergence of the reared generations, analyzed by using the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene, decreased from 0.0049 to 0.0004 as the generations progressed. In comparison with the fourth generation, the mortality and developmental time of the 39th generation were generally greater, and the adult body sizes were generally smaller. The estimated low developmental threshold temperatures of eggs, male larvae to male adults, and female larvae to female adults were 9.6, 11.3, and 9.7°C, respectively. The optimal rearing temperature was determined to be 25°C. This is the first record of domesticated rearing of a wild chironomid species under laboratory conditions for >7 yr.

  8. Research trends in radiobiology since 40 years. a new approach: the enzymatic repair function of DNA, internal factor in evolution of biological systems under irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mouton, R.

    1968-01-01

    In the first part of the report, the author attempts to draw an historical scheme of successive research working hypotheses in radiobiology since 1924. Less than a generation ago the effect of radiation exposure were viewed as being direct, immediate, irreparable and unmodifiable. Now it is generally accepted that radiation lesion can also be indirect, delayed, reparable and often modified with appropriate chemical or biochemical treatment. It was however in 1962-1964 that came the decisive breakthrough in radiobiology with the discovery that the cell possesses a natural active self-defense mechanism against whatever stress would affect the integrity of the genetic message contained in the DNA structure itself. The existence of what could be considered as a fourth DNA function i.e. self-repair by enzymatic action under genetic control-brings at least to radiobiology the missing molecular biology basis it needed to get out of its 'phenomenological night' after abandon of the generalization of Lea's theory through lack of experimental evidence. In the second part, which is a prospective one, the author tries to set an enlarged synthesis considering the possible role of DNA repair system not only in cell survival - in presence or absence of dose modifiers or mutagens - but also in the artificial and natural evolution of biological system exposed to sub-lethal doses of radiation. Most recent data from the literature fit well with what must be still considered as a general working hypothesis. Studies dealing with phenotypic and genotypic characters linked with the acquisition of gamma and UV radiation resistance in 'Escherichia coli K12' has been started by the author, in collaboration with O. Tremeau, in order to bring a new experimental contribution in this respect. (author) [fr

  9. Inferring Broad Regulatory Biology from Time Course Data: Have We Reached an Upper Bound under Constraints Typical of In Vivo Studies?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saurabh Vashishtha

    Full Text Available There is a growing appreciation for the network biology that regulates the coordinated expression of molecular and cellular markers however questions persist regarding the identifiability of these networks. Here we explore some of the issues relevant to recovering directed regulatory networks from time course data collected under experimental constraints typical of in vivo studies. NetSim simulations of sparsely connected biological networks were used to evaluate two simple feature selection techniques used in the construction of linear Ordinary Differential Equation (ODE models, namely truncation of terms versus latent vector projection. Performance was compared with ODE-based Time Series Network Identification (TSNI integral, and the information-theoretic Time-Delay ARACNE (TD-ARACNE. Projection-based techniques and TSNI integral outperformed truncation-based selection and TD-ARACNE on aggregate networks with edge densities of 10-30%, i.e. transcription factor, protein-protein cliques and immune signaling networks. All were more robust to noise than truncation-based feature selection. Performance was comparable on the in silico 10-node DREAM 3 network, a 5-node Yeast synthetic network designed for In vivo Reverse-engineering and Modeling Assessment (IRMA and a 9-node human HeLa cell cycle network of similar size and edge density. Performance was more sensitive to the number of time courses than to sample frequency and extrapolated better to larger networks by grouping experiments. In all cases performance declined rapidly in larger networks with lower edge density. Limited recovery and high false positive rates obtained overall bring into question our ability to generate informative time course data rather than the design of any particular reverse engineering algorithm.

  10. Semantics-based plausible reasoning to extend the knowledge coverage of medical knowledge bases for improved clinical decision support

    OpenAIRE

    Mohammadhassanzadeh, Hossein; Van Woensel, William; Abidi, Samina Raza; Abidi, Syed Sibte Raza

    2017-01-01

    Background Capturing complete medical knowledge is challenging-often due to incomplete patient Electronic Health Records (EHR), but also because of valuable, tacit medical knowledge hidden away in physicians? experiences. To extend the coverage of incomplete medical knowledge-based systems beyond their deductive closure, and thus enhance their decision-support capabilities, we argue that innovative, multi-strategy reasoning approaches should be applied. In particular, plausible reasoning mech...

  11. Systematic reviews need to consider applicability to disadvantaged populations: inter-rater agreement for a health equity plausibility algorithm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welch, Vivian; Brand, Kevin; Kristjansson, Elizabeth; Smylie, Janet; Wells, George; Tugwell, Peter

    2012-12-19

    Systematic reviews have been challenged to consider effects on disadvantaged groups. A priori specification of subgroup analyses is recommended to increase the credibility of these analyses. This study aimed to develop and assess inter-rater agreement for an algorithm for systematic review authors to predict whether differences in effect measures are likely for disadvantaged populations relative to advantaged populations (only relative effect measures were addressed). A health equity plausibility algorithm was developed using clinimetric methods with three items based on literature review, key informant interviews and methodology studies. The three items dealt with the plausibility of differences in relative effects across sex or socioeconomic status (SES) due to: 1) patient characteristics; 2) intervention delivery (i.e., implementation); and 3) comparators. Thirty-five respondents (consisting of clinicians, methodologists and research users) assessed the likelihood of differences across sex and SES for ten systematic reviews with these questions. We assessed inter-rater reliability using Fleiss multi-rater kappa. The proportion agreement was 66% for patient characteristics (95% confidence interval: 61%-71%), 67% for intervention delivery (95% confidence interval: 62% to 72%) and 55% for the comparator (95% confidence interval: 50% to 60%). Inter-rater kappa, assessed with Fleiss kappa, ranged from 0 to 0.199, representing very low agreement beyond chance. Users of systematic reviews rated that important differences in relative effects across sex and socioeconomic status were plausible for a range of individual and population-level interventions. However, there was very low inter-rater agreement for these assessments. There is an unmet need for discussion of plausibility of differential effects in systematic reviews. Increased consideration of external validity and applicability to different populations and settings is warranted in systematic reviews to meet this

  12. Uncertain socioeconomic projections used in travel demand and emissions models: could plausible errors result in air quality nonconformity?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rodier, C.J.; Johnston, R.A.

    2002-01-01

    A sensitivity analysis of plausible errors in population, employment, fuel price, and income projections is conducted using the travel demand and emissions models of the Sacramento, CA, USA, region for their transportation plan. The results of the analyses indicate that plausible error ranges for household income and fuel prices are not a significant source of uncertainty with respect to the region's travel demand and emissions projections. However, plausible errors in population and employment projections (within approximately one standard deviation) may result in the region's transportation plan not meeting the conformity test for nitrogens of oxides (NO x ) in the year 2005 (i.e., an approximately 16% probability). This outcome is also possible in the year 2015 but less likely (within approximately two standard deviations or a 2.5% probability). Errors in socioeconomic projections are only one of many sources of error in travel demand and emissions models. These results have several policy implications. First, regions like Sacramento that meet their conformity tests by a very small margin should rethink new highway investment and consider contingency transportation plans that incorporate more aggressive emissions reduction policies. Second, regional transportation planning agencies should conduct sensitivity analyses as part of their conformity analysis to make explicit significant uncertainties in the methods and to identify the probability of their transportation plan not conforming. Third, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) should clarify the interpretation of ''demonstrate'' conformity of transportation plans; that is, specify the level of certainty that it considers a sufficient demonstration of conformity. (author)

  13. Consciousness and biological evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindahl, B I

    1997-08-21

    It has been suggested that if the preservation and development of consciousness in the biological evolution is a result of natural selection, it is plausible that consciousness not only has been influenced by neural processes, but has had a survival value itself; and it could only have had this, if it had also been efficacious. This argument for mind-brain interaction is examined, both as the argument has been developed by William James and Karl Popper and as it has been discussed by C.D. Broad. The problem of identifying mental phenomena with certain neural phenomena is also addressed. The main conclusion of the analysis is that an explanation of the evolution of consciousness in Darwinian terms of natural selection does not rule out that consciousness may have evolved as a mere causally inert effect of the evolution of the nervous system, or that mental phenomena are identical with certain neural phenomena. However, the interactionistic theory still seems, more plausible and more fruitful for other reasons brought up in the discussion.

  14. Safety and immunogenicity of Onderstepoort Biological Products’ Rift Valley fever Clone 13 vaccine in sheep and goats under field conditions in Senegal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Modou M. Lo

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available This blinded field safety study was conducted in Senegal to assess safety and immunogenicity of administration of the registered dose of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV Clone 13 vaccine (Onderstepoort Biological Products to sheep and goats of West African breeds under natural conditions. A total of 267 small ruminants (220 sheep, 47 goats were included; half received RVFV Clone 13 vaccine at the recommended dose and half received the diluent (as placebo only. The study was performed on three commercial farms in the northern and eastern region of Senegal in accordance with veterinary good clinical practices. The animals were observed daily for 3 days after vaccination, and then weekly for 1 year. In both sheep and goats vaccinated against RVFV seroconversion rates above 70% were recorded. No seroconversion related to RVFV was observed in placebo-treated animals. No statistically significant differences were determined between placebo and vaccinated groups for mean rectal temperatures for the first 3 days after administration (p > 0.05. No abnormal clinical signs related to treatment were noted, and only one slight injection site reaction was observed in one vaccinated animal for 2 days after vaccination. Out of 176 births assessed over 1 year (93 from the vaccinated group, 83 from the placebo group, 9 were abnormal in the placebo group and 3 in the vaccinated group (p > 0.05. The frequency of adverse events was similar in the placebo and vaccinated groups. RVFV Clone 13 vaccine administered according to the manufacturer’s instructions was safe and well tolerated in West African breeds of sheep and goats, including animals of approximately 6 months of age and pregnant females, under field conditions in Senegal. Antibody levels persisted up to 1 year after vaccination.

  15. Biological denitrification process based on the Fe(0)-carbon micro-electrolysis for simultaneous ammonia and nitrate removal from low organic carbon water under a microaerobic condition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Shihai; Li, Desheng; Yang, Xue; Xing, Wei; Li, Jinlong; Zhang, Qi

    2016-11-01

    A combined process between micro-electrolysis and biological denitrification (MEBD) using iron scraps and an activated carbon-based micro-electrolysis carrier was developed for nitrogen removal under a microaerobic condition. The process provided NH4(+)-N and total nitrogen (TN) removal efficiencies of 92.6% and 95.3%, respectively, and TN removal rate of 0.373±0.11kgN/(m(3)d) at corresponding DO of 1.0±0.1mg/L and HRT of 3h, and the optimal pH of 7.6-8.4. High-throughput sequencing analysis verified that dominant classes belonged to β-, α-, and γ-Proteobacteria, and Nitrospira. The dominant genera Hydrogenophaga and Sphaerotilus significantly increased during the operation, covering 13.2% and 6.1% in biofilms attached to the carrier in the middle of the reactor, respectively. Autotrophic denitrification contributed to >80% of the TN removal. The developed MEBD achieved efficient simultaneous nitrification and autotrophic denitrification, presenting significant potential for application in practical low organic carbon water treatment. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. The Effect of Chemical, Biological and Organic Nutritional Treatments on Sunflowers Yield and Yield Components under the Influence of Water Deficit Stress

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    fatemeh soleymani

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Introduction To achieve the higher economic yield of crop plants, supplying enough nutrients to plants is very important. Moreover, nutrient uptakes by plants is influenced by the soil water contents. However, nowadays chemical fertilizer application is important agronomic factor that has significant effects on growth and quantity and quality of final yield, but traditional nutrient management and excessive use of chemical fertilizers may cause the environmental problems such as contamination of soil and water resources, low quality of agricultural products and reduction of soil fertility. These factors have drawn attention to health and ecological sustainable farming systems (Sharma, 2002. In this context, usage of organic and biological products for plant nutrition is considered as one of the solutions to achieve the goals of sustainable agriculture. Materials and methods To evaluate the effect of various feeding systems on yield and yield components of sunflower (Helianthus annuus L. under the influence of water deficit stress, a split-plot experiment based on randomized complete block design with three replications, was carried out in the Agricultural Faculty of Bu-Ali Sina University during the growing season of 2013-2014. Main plots consisted of two irrigation levels: optimum irrigation and deficit irrigation stress (irrigation after 60 and 120 mm evaporation from evaporation pan, class A, respectively and sub-plots included of nine nutrition systems: 1- no bio or chemical fertilizer application, 2- 100% of the recommended chemical fertilizer , 3- vermicompost, 4- phospho nitro kara, 5- vermicompost+ phospho nitro kara, 6- vermicompost+ ½ chemical fertilizer, 7- phospho nitro kara+ ½ chemical fertilizer, 8- vermicompost+ phospho nitro kara+ ½ chemical fertilizer, 9- ½ proposed chemical fertilizer. Phospho-nitro-kara which contains phosphate solubilizing and nitrogen fixing bacteria (Bacillus coagulans, azotobactr chroocuccum and

  17. Plausible Roles for RAGE in Conditions Exacerbated by Direct and Indirect (Secondhand) Smoke Exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Joshua B; Hirschi, Kelsey M; Arroyo, Juan A; Bikman, Benjamin T; Kooyman, David L; Reynolds, Paul R

    2017-03-17

    Approximately 1 billion people smoke worldwide, and the burden placed on society by primary and secondhand smokers is expected to increase. Smoking is the leading risk factor for myriad health complications stemming from diverse pathogenic programs. First- and second-hand cigarette smoke contains thousands of constituents, including several carcinogens and cytotoxic chemicals that orchestrate chronic inflammatory responses and destructive remodeling events. In the current review, we outline details related to compromised pulmonary and systemic conditions related to smoke exposure. Specifically, data are discussed relative to impaired lung physiology, cancer mechanisms, maternal-fetal complications, cardiometabolic, and joint disorders in the context of smoke exposure exacerbations. As a general unifying mechanism, the receptor for advanced glycation end-products (RAGE) and its signaling axis is increasingly considered central to smoke-related pathogenesis. RAGE is a multi-ligand cell surface receptor whose expression increases following cigarette smoke exposure. RAGE signaling participates in the underpinning of inflammatory mechanisms mediated by requisite cytokines, chemokines, and remodeling enzymes. Understanding the biological contributions of RAGE during cigarette smoke-induced inflammation may provide critically important insight into the pathology of lung disease and systemic complications that combine during the demise of those exposed.

  18. A Note on Unified Statistics Including Fermi-Dirac, Bose-Einstein, and Tsallis Statistics, and Plausible Extension to Anisotropic Effect

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christianto V.

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available In the light of some recent hypotheses suggesting plausible unification of thermostatistics where Fermi-Dirac, Bose-Einstein and Tsallis statistics become its special subsets, we consider further plausible extension to include non-integer Hausdorff dimension, which becomes realization of fractal entropy concept. In the subsequent section, we also discuss plausible extension of this unified statistics to include anisotropic effect by using quaternion oscillator, which may be observed in the context of Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation. Further observation is of course recommended in order to refute or verify this proposition.

  19. Serum Transthyretin Level as a Plausible Marker for Diagnosis of Child Acute Malnutrition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Behailu Tsegaye

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Malnutrition is a major underlying condition for mortality in children under five years of age in developing countries, particularly in Ethiopia. The most important forms of malnutrition in Ethiopia are protein and energy deficiencies. There is no reliable laboratory method at present to assess acute malnutrition. Transthyretin is a homotetrameric serum protein with half-life of two days. The main objective of this study was to assess the estimation of serum transthyretin level as a useful diagnostic method to evaluate nutritional status of children. We used a newly designed transthyretin test kit to evaluate nutritional status of children admitted to our hospital. There is no national reference standard; hence we made a comparative study using anthropometric measurements and measurement of serum albumin level. A total of 102 children (51 controls and 51 study subjects were included in this study. Transthyretin was found to be more sensitive to changes in acute malnutrition than albumin, and its level reflects recent dietary intake compared to overall nutritional status. The method is more sensitive and reliable for detection of acute malnutrition, along with anthropometric methods. Measurement of serum transthyretin level can be used as a valuable diagnostic method for assessment of acute malnutrition among children.

  20. Organisation of biological research carried out in the United States by the A.E.C. or under her contract (1960)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pellerin, J.

    1960-01-01

    This report is based on information gathered in the course of a trip to the United States, in November and December 1958 which consisted chiefly of visits to the main biological and medical research laboratories and discussions with the heads of these establishments. A description is given of the general organisation of the Atomic Energy Commission's Division of Biology and Medicine, and of the distribution of responsibility for radiation protection work and for biological, medical and agricultural research amongst the various Services attached to it; this is followed by a more detailed account of the activities carried on in this field at the great national laboratories. Finally, the systems of collaboration set up with external research organisations in the form of research contracts are examined, together with the substantial help provided by the A.E.C. for biological, medical and agricultural research in general, owing to a systematic policy of subsidising the distribution of radioisotopes for this purpose. (author) [fr

  1. The effect of organic, biological and chemical fertilizers on yield, essential oil percentage and some agroecological characteristics of summer savory (Satureja hortensis L. under Mashhad conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E Gholami Sharafkhane

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Introduction Savory (Satureja hortensis L. is an annual herbaceous plant that belongs to the Lamiaceae family. Nowadays, the use of biofertilizers is increased in agriculture and their role in increasing the crops production has been demonstrated in many research works (Vessey, 2003; Chen, 2006; Mahfouz & Sharaf- Eldin, 2007. One of the most important visions is sustainable production of enough food plus paying attention to social, economical and environmental aspects. (Gliessman, 1998 stated that the first step to achieve this goal is optimization and improvement of resources use efficiencies. Considering medicinal importance of savory and its role in the food and pharmaceutical industries (Omidbeigi, 2000, beside the limited nutrient resources and need to increase healthy production through using ecological inputs, this study was designed and conducted aimed to evaluate agroecological characteristics of savory as affected by the application of bio fertilizers, chemical and organic fertilizers under Mashhad conditions. Materials and methods In order to study the effects of organic, biological and chemical fertilizers on quantitative and qualitative characteristics of summer savory, a split-plot design based on RCBD with three replications was conducted during the growing season of 2012 at the Agricultural Research Station, College of Agriculture, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran. Different levels of cattle manure (0 and 25 t.ha-1 were assigned to the main plots and different types of bio fertilizers (Nitroxin, containing Azotobacter sp. and Azospirillum sp., Biophosphor, containing phosphate-solubilizing bacteria (Bacillus sp. and Pseudomonas sp., Biosulfur, containing sulfur-solubilizing bacteria (Thiobacillus ssp., combination of Nitroxin+Biophosphor+ Biosulfur, vermicompost (7 t.ha-1, chemical fertilizers (NPK: 60, 60 and 70 kg.ha-1 and control (no fertilizer were used in the sub- plots. Results and discussion According to the results

  2. In vitro biological effectiveness of JRR-4 epithermal neutron beam. Experiment under free air beam and in water phantom. Cooperative research

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yamamoto, Tetsuya; Matsumura, Akira; Nose, Tadao; Yamamoto, Kazuyoshi; Kumada, Hiroaki; Kishi, Toshiaki; Hori, Naohiko; Torii, Yoshiya; Horiguchi, Yoji

    2002-05-01

    The surviving curve and the biological effectiveness factor of dose components generated in boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) were separately determined in neutron beams at Japan Research Reactor No.4. Surviving fraction of V79 Chinese hamster cell with or without 10 B was obtained using an epithermal neutron beam (ENB), a mixed thermal-epithermal neutron beam (TNB-1), and a thermal neutron beam (TNB-2), which were used or planned to use for BNCT clinical trial. The cell killing effect of these neutron beams with or without the presence of 10 B depended highly on the neutron beam used, according to the epithermal and fast neutron content in the beam. The biological effectiveness factor values of the boron capture reaction for ENB, TNB-1 and TNB-2 were 3.99±0.24, 3.04±0.19 and 1.43±0.08, respectively. The biological effectiveness factor values of the high-LET dose components based on the hydrogen recoils and the nitrogen capture reaction were 2.50±0.32, 2.34±0.30 and 2.17±0.28 for ENB, TNB-1 and TNB-2, respectively. The biological effectiveness factor values of the neutron and photon components were 1.22±0.16, 1.23±0.16 and 1.21±0.16, respectively. The depth function of biological effectiveness factor in water phantom and the difference in biological effectiveness factor among boron compounds were also determined. The experimental determination of biological effectiveness factor outlined in this paper is applicable to the dose calculation for each dose component of the neutron beams and contribute to an accurate biological effectiveness factor as comparison with a neutron beam at a different facility employed in ongoing and planned BNCT clinical trials. (author)

  3. Toward mechanical systems biology in bone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trüssel, Andreas; Müller, Ralph; Webster, Duncan

    2012-11-01

    Cyclic mechanical loading is perhaps the most important physiological factor regulating bone mass and shape in a way which balances optimal strength with minimal weight. This bone adaptation process spans multiple length and time scales. Forces resulting from physiological exercise at the organ scale are sensed at the cellular scale by osteocytes, which reside inside the bone matrix. Via biochemical pathways, osteocytes orchestrate the local remodeling action of osteoblasts (bone formation) and osteoclasts (bone resorption). Together these local adaptive remodeling activities sum up to strengthen bone globally at the organ scale. To resolve the underlying mechanisms it is required to identify and quantify both cause and effect across the different scales. Progress has been made at the different scales experimentally. Computational models of bone adaptation have been developed to piece together various experimental observations at the different scales into coherent and plausible mechanisms. However additional quantitative experimental validation is still required to build upon the insights which have already been achieved. In this review we discuss emerging as well as state of the art experimental and computational techniques and how they might be used in a mechanical systems biology approach to further our understanding of the mechanisms governing load induced bone adaptation, i.e., ways are outlined in which experimental and computational approaches could be coupled, in a quantitative manner to create more reliable multiscale models of bone.

  4. Biological insights from 108 schizophrenia-associated genetic loci

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ripke, Stephan; Neale, Benjamin M.; Corvin, Aiden

    2014-01-01

    and 113,075 controls. We identify 128 independent associations spanning 108 conservatively defined loci that meet genome-wide significance, 83 of which have not been previously reported. Associations were enriched among genes expressed in brain, providing biological plausibility for the findings. Many...

  5. Neuroinflammation in Autism: Plausible Role of Maternal Inflammation, Dietary Omega 3, and Microbiota

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charlotte Madore

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Several genetic causes of autism spectrum disorder (ASD have been identified. However, more recent work has highlighted that certain environmental exposures early in life may also account for some cases of autism. Environmental insults during pregnancy, such as infection or malnutrition, seem to dramatically impact brain development. Maternal viral or bacterial infections have been characterized as disruptors of brain shaping, even if their underlying mechanisms are not yet fully understood. Poor nutritional diversity, as well as nutrient deficiency, is strongly associated with neurodevelopmental disorders in children. For instance, imbalanced levels of essential fatty acids, and especially polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs, are observed in patients with ASD and other neurodevelopmental disorders (e.g., attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD and schizophrenia. Interestingly, PUFAs, and specifically n-3 PUFAs, are powerful immunomodulators that exert anti-inflammatory properties. These prenatal dietary and immunologic factors not only impact the fetal brain, but also affect the microbiota. Recent work suggests that the microbiota could be the missing link between environmental insults in prenatal life and future neurodevelopmental disorders. As both nutrition and inflammation can massively affect the microbiota, we discuss here how understanding the crosstalk between these three actors could provide a promising framework to better elucidate ASD etiology.

  6. Marine biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thurman, H.V.; Webber, H.H.

    1984-01-01

    This book discusses both taxonomic and ecological topics on marine biology. Full coverage of marine organisms of all five kingdoms is provided, along with interesting and thorough discussion of all major marine habitats. Organization into six major parts allows flexibility. It also provides insight into important topics such as disposal of nuclear waste at sea, the idea that life began on the ocean floor, and how whales, krill, and people interact. A full-color photo chapter reviews questions, and exercises. The contents are: an overview marine biology: fundamental concepts/investigating life in the ocean; the physical ocean, the ocean floor, the nature of water, the nature and motion of ocean water; general ecology, conditions for life in the sea, biological productivity and energy transfer; marine organisms; monera, protista, mycota and metaphyta; the smaller marine animals, the large animals marine habitats, the intertidal zone/benthos of the continental shelf, the photic zone, the deep ocean, the ocean under stress, marine pollution, appendix a: the metric system and conversion factors/ appendix b: prefixes and suffixes/ appendix c: taxonomic classification of common marine organisms, and glossary, and index

  7. Regulation of HtrA2 on WT1 gene expression under imatinib stimulation and its effects on the cell biology of K562 cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Lixia; Li, Yan; Li, Xiaoyan; Zhang, Qing; Qiu, Shaowei; Zhang, Qi; Wang, Min; Xing, Haiyan; Rao, Qing; Tian, Zheng; Tang, Kejing; Wang, Jianxiang; Mi, Yingchang

    2017-09-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the regulation of Wilms Tumor 1 (WT1) by serine protease high-temperature requirement protein A2 (HtrA2), a member of the Htr family, in K562 cells. In addition, the study aimed to observe the effect of this regulation on cell biological functions and its associated mechanisms. Expression of WT1 and HtrA2 mRNA, and proteins following imatinib and the HtrA2 inhibitor 5-[5-(2-nitrophenyl) furfuryl iodine]-1, 3-diphenyl-2-thiobarbituric acid (UCF-101) treatment was detected with reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction and western blot analysis. Subsequent to treatment with drugs and UCF-101, the proliferative function of K562 cells was detected using MTT assays, and the rate of apoptosis was detected using Annexin V with propidium iodide flow cytometry in K562 cells. The protein levels in the signaling pathway were analyzed using western blotting following treatment with imatinib and UCF-101. In K562 cells, imatinib treatment activated HtrA2 gene at a transcription level, while the WT1 gene was simultaneously downregulated. Following HtrA2 inhibitor (UCF-101) treatment, the downregulation of WT1 increased gradually. At the protein level, imatinib induced the increase in HtrA2 protein level and concomitantly downregulated WT1 protein level. Subsequent to HtrA2 inhibition by UCF-101, the WT1 protein level decreased temporarily, but eventually increased. Imatinib induced apoptosis in K562 cells, but this effect was attenuated by the HtrA2 inhibitor UCF-101, resulting in the upregulation of the WT1 protein level. However; UCF-101 did not markedly change the proliferation inhibition caused by imatinib. Imatinib activated the p38 mitogen activated protein kinase (p38 MAPK) signaling pathway in K562 cells, and UCF-101 affected the activation of imatinib in the p38 MAPK signaling pathway. Imatinib inhibited the extracellular signal-related kinase (ERK1/2) pathway markedly and persistently, but UCF-101

  8. The plausible reason why the length of 5' untranslated region is unrelated to organismal complexity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen Feng-Chi

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Organismal complexity is suggested to increase with the complexity of transcriptional and translational regulations. Supporting this notion is a recent study that demonstrated a higher level of tissue-specific gene expression in human than in mouse. However, whether this correlation can be extended beyond mammals remains unclear. In addition, 5' untranslated regions (5'UTRs, which have undergone stochastic elongation during evolution and potentially included an increased number of regulatory elements, may have played an important role in the emergence of organismal complexity. Although the lack of correlation between 5'UTR length and organismal complexity has been proposed, the underlying mechanisms remain unexplored. Results In this study, we select the number of cell types as the measurement of organismal complexity and examine the correlation between (1 organismal complexity and transcriptional regulatory complexity; and (2 organismal complexity and 5'UTR length by comparing the 5'UTRs and multiple-tissue expression profiles of human (Homo sapiens, mouse (Mus musculus, and fruit fly (Drosophila melanogaster. The transcriptional regulatory complexity is measured by using the tissue specificity of gene expression and the ratio of non-constitutively expressed to constitutively expressed genes. We demonstrate that, whereas correlation (1 holds well in the three-way comparison, correlation (2 is not true. Results from a larger dataset that includes more than 15 species, ranging from yeast to human, also reject correlation (2. The reason for the failure of correlation (2 may be ascribed to: Firstly, longer 5'UTRs do not contribute to increased tissue specificity of gene expression. Secondly, the increased numbers of common translational regulatory elements in longer 5'UTRs do not lead to increased organismal complexity. Conclusions Our study has extended the evidence base for the correlation between organismal complexity and

  9. Bacterially-Associated Transcriptional Remodelling in a Distinct Genomic Subtype of Colorectal Cancer Provides a Plausible Molecular Basis for Disease Development.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katie S Lennard

    Full Text Available The relevance of specific microbial colonisation to colorectal cancer (CRC disease pathogenesis is increasingly recognised, but our understanding of possible underlying molecular mechanisms that may link colonisation to disease in vivo remains limited. Here, we investigate the relationships between the most commonly studied CRC-associated bacteria (Enterotoxigenic Bacteroides fragilis, pks+ Escherichia coli, Fusobacterium spp., afaC+ E. coli, Enterococcus faecalis & Enteropathogenic E. coli and altered transcriptomic and methylation profiles of CRC patients, in order to gain insight into the potential contribution of these bacteria in the aetiopathogenesis of CRC. We show that colonisation by E. faecalis and high levels of Fusobacterium is associated with a specific transcriptomic subtype of CRC that is characterised by CpG island methylation, microsatellite instability and a significant increase in inflammatory and DNA damage pathways. Analysis of the significant, bacterially-associated changes in host gene expression, both at the level of individual genes as well as pathways, revealed a transcriptional remodeling that provides a plausible mechanistic link between specific bacterial colonisation and colorectal cancer disease development and progression in this subtype; these included upregulation of REG3A, REG1A and REG1P in the case of high-level colonization by Fusobacterium, and CXCL10 and BMI1 in the case of colonisation by E. faecalis. The enrichment of both E. faecalis and Fusobacterium in this CRC subtype suggests that polymicrobial colonisation of the colonic epithelium may well be an important aspect of colonic tumourigenesis.

  10. Energy System Expectations for Nuclear in the 21. Century: A Plausible Range

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Langlois, Lucille M.; McDonald, Alan; Rogner, Hans-Holger; Vera, Ivan

    2002-01-01

    This paper outlines a range of scenarios describing what the world's energy system might look like in the middle of the century, and what nuclear energy's most profitable role might be. The starting point is the 40 non-greenhouse-gas-mitigation scenarios in the Special Report on Emissions Scenarios (SRES) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, 2000). Given their international authorship and comprehensive review by governments and scientific experts, the SRES scenarios are the state of the art in long-term energy scenarios. However, they do not present the underlying energy system structures in enough detail for specific energy technology and infrastructure analyses. This paper therefore describes initial steps within INPRO (The International Project on Innovative Nuclear Reactors and Fuel Cycles of the International Atomic Energy Agency) to translate the SRES results into a range of possible nuclear energy technology requirements for mid-century. The paper summarizes the four SRES scenarios that will be used in INPRO and the reasons for their selection. It provides illustrative examples of the sort of additional detail that is being developed about the overall energy system implied by each scenario, and about specific scenario features particularly relevant to nuclear energy. As recommended in SRES, the selected scenarios cover all four SRES 'story-line families'. The energy system translations being developed in INPRO are intended to indicate how energy services may be provided in mid-century and to delineate likely technology and infrastructure implications. They will indicate answers to questions like the following. The list is illustrative, not comprehensive. - What kind of nuclear power plants will best fit the mid-century energy system? - What energy forms and other products and services provided by nuclear reactors will best fit the mid-century energy system? - What would be their market shares? - How difficult will it be to site new nuclear

  11. Comparison the Efficiency of Aquasorb and Accepta Superabsorbent Polymers in Improving Physical, Chemical, and Biological Properties of Soil and Tomato Turnover under Greenhouse Condition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    mehdi nourzadeh haddad

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Water shortage in arid and semiarid regions is the most serious factor in limiting agricultural activities as it leads to the rapid reduction of yields from both a quantitative and qualitative perspective. Under conditions of water scarcity, leaf temperature rises, which causes plant wilting and premature senescence of leaves and, eventually, severes reduction of dry matter production. Use of high-efficient irrigation practices, improvement of soil's physical properties, and use of soil amendments such as superabsorbent polymers are some ways of compensating for water shortage, especially during the growing season. Some materials such as plant residues, manure, various types of compost, and superabsorbent polymeric hydrogels can store various amounts of water and thus increase water retention and storage capacity of soils. Superabsorbent hydrogels, which are also called superabsorbent polymers (SAPs or hydrophilic polymeric gels, are hydrogels that can absorb substantial quantities of water. Hydrogels are a class of polymeric materials having network structures (with physical or chemical crosslinks that are very capable of swelling and absorbing large amounts of water. These materials are formed from water-solublepolymers by crosslinking them either using radiation or a crosslinker. Superabsorbents are widely used in many products such as disposable diapers, feminine napkins, soils for agricultural and horticultural purposes, gel actuators, water blocking tapes, medicine for the drug delivery systems and absorbent pads where water absorbency or water retention is important. Water is a major constraint for crop growth in arid and semi-arid regions, as the precipitation is low and uncertain in these areas. Efficient utilization of meager soil and water resources necessitates the adaptation of appropriate water management techniques. Suitable soil moisture increases the biological activities as result of physical and chemical

  12. Biological N2-FIXATION and Mineral N-Fertilization Effects on Soybean (Glicine max L. Merr.) Yield Under Temperate Climate Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    László Phd, M., ,, Dr.

    2009-04-01

    continues to increase) and allewiate world hunger is to increase the intensity of production in those ecosystems that lend themselves to sustainable intensification while decreasing the intensity of production in the more fragile ecologies (Reeves 1998). Most plants depend entirely for growth on fixed nitrogen absorbed from the soil, mainly as nitrate but also as ammonium. Therefore to the methods of crop production now dominant in the agricultural systems of many developed countries strongly depend upon a sustained input of N. Economic and environmental considerations surrounding fertilizer use then empasize the need to increase the efficiency of N- utilization by plants. On the other hand the biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) is important under all imput conditions to ensure an optimal supply of nitrogen to the farming system. A well-founded understanding of the mechanistic interactions between BNF and N limitations is presently lacking. Synbiotic nitrogen fixation by legumes makes a valuable contribution to N-inputs, especially in countries like Hungary where effective rhizobia-inoculation techniques have been developed in the context of the new sustainable agricultural system. It is widely known that soya bean -Glycine max (L.) Merr.-, is an important legume. This plant able to fix the atmospheric nitrogen (N2) it needs for growth through the agency of specific bacteria Rhizobium japonicum. Under field conditions fixation usually accounts for only 25-30% of the total nitrogen accumulated by these plants at harvest. Therefore to marginal yield have to optimalise the nitrogen supply of these legume by N-fertilization. Objectives for our experiments were to (1.) comparisons of the plant nutrition performance of different soil nitrogen supply levels by N- fertilization and N- fixation under Mediterranean climate conditions at Hungary, (2.) evaluates the potential for N2 fixation imputs by grain legume based on the soya bean as a means of improving soil fertility, (3

  13. Biological Agents

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... E-Tools Safety and Health Topics / Biological Agents Biological Agents This page requires that javascript be enabled ... 202) 693-2300 if additional assistance is required. Biological Agents Menu Overview In Focus: Ebola Frederick A. ...

  14. Biology Teachers' Conceptions of the Diversity of Life and the Historical Development of Evolutionary Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Silva, Paloma Rodrigues; de Andrade, Mariana A. Bologna Soares; de Andrade Caldeira, Ana Maria

    2015-01-01

    Biology is a science that involves study of the diversity of living organisms. This diversity has always generated questions and has motivated cultures to seek plausible explanations for the differences and similarities between types of organisms. In biology teaching, these issues are addressed by adopting an evolutionary approach. The aim of this…

  15. The Effects of Biological Fertilizers, Chemical Fertilizers and Manure Application on Some Qualitative Characteristics of Vicia villosa Roth Forage under Greenhouse Condition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R Kamaei

    2017-03-01

    % probability level. Results and Discussion The results showed that in vitro DM digestibility was significantly (P P > 0.5 effect on in vitro organic matter digestibility. The highest and the lowest in vitro OM digestibility values were observed in the Rhizobium + mycorrhiza (77.86% and control (66.48%, respectively. Similarly, the results of previous studies indicated that forage quality significantly improved by inoculation with mycorrhizal fungi fertilizer in comparison with control. There was a significant difference between experimental treatments for percentage of crude protein. All fertilizer treatments increased CP content of forages as compared to that control. The effect of M, M + V and M+NPK treatments on CP was similar and the highest CP was associated to M + These effects of fertilizer treatments may be related to increasing the nitrogen fixation and absorption capacity of plant. Although a negative correlation has been reported between CP and fiber content of forages, the results of our study showed a low non-significant impact of fertilizer treatments on fiber content of forage expressed as NDA and ADF. Moreover, the percentage of Ash for all fertilizer treatments was similar to control, except for Rhizobium + mycorrhiza treatment that showed a higher significant Ash content than control. In this experiment, a significant effect of fertilizer treatments was also observed for dry matter yield of forage. In comparison with control, the combination of mycorrhizal and Rhizobium increased forage dry matter yield by 37.89%. These results are in agreement with. Conclusions The use of biological and organic fertilizers improves availability of nutrients for plant without negative impact on soil and environment. In the present study, we showed an increase in qualitative and quantitative characteristics of Vicia villosa Roth forage by bio-fertilizers application under greenhouse condition. However, a combination of mycorrhiza and Rhizobium had the highest positive impact

  16. Usefulness and limitations of dK random graph models to predict interactions and functional homogeneity in biological networks under a pseudo-likelihood parameter estimation approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luan Yihui

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many aspects of biological functions can be modeled by biological networks, such as protein interaction networks, metabolic networks, and gene coexpression networks. Studying the statistical properties of these networks in turn allows us to infer biological function. Complex statistical network models can potentially more accurately describe the networks, but it is not clear whether such complex models are better suited to find biologically meaningful subnetworks. Results Recent studies have shown that the degree distribution of the nodes is not an adequate statistic in many molecular networks. We sought to extend this statistic with 2nd and 3rd order degree correlations and developed a pseudo-likelihood approach to estimate the parameters. The approach was used to analyze the MIPS and BIOGRID yeast protein interaction networks, and two yeast coexpression networks. We showed that 2nd order degree correlation information gave better predictions of gene interactions in both protein interaction and gene coexpression networks. However, in the biologically important task of predicting functionally homogeneous modules, degree correlation information performs marginally better in the case of the MIPS and BIOGRID protein interaction networks, but worse in the case of gene coexpression networks. Conclusion Our use of dK models showed that incorporation of degree correlations could increase predictive power in some contexts, albeit sometimes marginally, but, in all contexts, the use of third-order degree correlations decreased accuracy. However, it is possible that other parameter estimation methods, such as maximum likelihood, will show the usefulness of incorporating 2nd and 3rd degree correlations in predicting functionally homogeneous modules.

  17. Usefulness and limitations of dK random graph models to predict interactions and functional homogeneity in biological networks under a pseudo-likelihood parameter estimation approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Wenhui; Nunez-Iglesias, Juan; Luan, Yihui; Sun, Fengzhu

    2009-09-03

    Many aspects of biological functions can be modeled by biological networks, such as protein interaction networks, metabolic networks, and gene coexpression networks. Studying the statistical properties of these networks in turn allows us to infer biological function. Complex statistical network models can potentially more accurately describe the networks, but it is not clear whether such complex models are better suited to find biologically meaningful subnetworks. Recent studies have shown that the degree distribution of the nodes is not an adequate statistic in many molecular networks. We sought to extend this statistic with 2nd and 3rd order degree correlations and developed a pseudo-likelihood approach to estimate the parameters. The approach was used to analyze the MIPS and BIOGRID yeast protein interaction networks, and two yeast coexpression networks. We showed that 2nd order degree correlation information gave better predictions of gene interactions in both protein interaction and gene coexpression networks. However, in the biologically important task of predicting functionally homogeneous modules, degree correlation information performs marginally better in the case of the MIPS and BIOGRID protein interaction networks, but worse in the case of gene coexpression networks. Our use of dK models showed that incorporation of degree correlations could increase predictive power in some contexts, albeit sometimes marginally, but, in all contexts, the use of third-order degree correlations decreased accuracy. However, it is possible that other parameter estimation methods, such as maximum likelihood, will show the usefulness of incorporating 2nd and 3rd degree correlations in predicting functionally homogeneous modules.

  18. Pathways to plausibility

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wahlberg, Ayo

    2008-01-01

    Herbal medicine has long been contrasted to modern medicine in terms of a holistic approach to healing, vitalistic theories of health and illness and an emphasis on the body’s innate self-healing capacities. At the same time, since the early 20th century, the cultivation, preparation and mass...... production of herbal medicines have become increasingly industrialised, scientificised and commercialised. What is more, phytochemical efforts to identify and isolate particular ‘active ingredients’ from whole-plant extracts have intensified, often in response to increasing regulatory scrutiny of the safety...... and quality of herbal medicinal products. In this paper, I examine whether describing these developments in terms of a biomedical ‘colonisation’ of herbal medicine, as has been common, allows us to sufficiently account for the mundane collaborative efforts of herbalists, botanists, phytochemists...

  19. Emerging role of Hippo signalling in pancreatic biology: YAP re-expression and plausible link to islet cell apoptosis and replication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Anjana; Yerra, Veera Ganesh; Kumar, Ashutosh

    2017-02-01

    Diabetes mellitus is an ailment that develops when the functional capacity of the pancreas does not meet the metabolic requirements of the whole body, either due to insulin insufficiency or resistance to insulin action. Current therapies that control glycaemia are limited by their unwanted effects or their inability to prevent the development of long-term complications. Regeneration and replacement of beta cell therapies are shaping the goals of future management of diabetes. The Hippo pathway, first discovered in Drosophila melanogaster, plays a vital role in controlling the organ size. Nuclear recruitment of YAP/TAZ (Yes-associated protein/transcriptional co-activator with PDZ-binding motif), a mammalian analogue of Yorkie protein found in Drosophila, activates cell proliferation and inhibits apoptosis. YAP was found to regulate early pancreatic development followed by downregulation during Ngn3-specific endocrine lineage maturation corresponding to their mitotic quiescence. Recent evidences have shown that optimum modulation of upstream kinases in the Hippo signalling pathway may lead to apoptosis inhibition and renewal of progenitor as well as stem cells in case of tissue or cell injury. This article reviews the evidences linking the role of various components of the Hippo pathway to pancreatic regeneration. In particular, the focus is on the beneficial role of induced YAP expression and its nuclear distribution on apoptosis and replication of adult pancreatic β islets. This approach may be of immense significance towards our fight against diabetes; thus, more insightful research is warranted in the area of Hippo signalling pathway and its involvement in pancreatic regeneration. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. and Société Française de Biochimie et Biologie Moléculaire (SFBBM). All rights reserved.

  20. A genome-wide association meta-analysis of diarrhoeal disease in young children identifies FUT2 locus and provides plausible biological pathways

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bustamante, Mariona; Standl, Marie; Bassat, Quique

    2016-01-01

    implicated in the susceptibility to infections, including Rotavirus and Norovirus Gene-set enrichment analysis suggested pathways related to the histo-blood group antigen production, and the regulation of ion transport and blood pressure. Among others, the gastrointestinal tract, and the immune and neuro...

  1. Eruca sativa Might Influence the Growth, Survival under Simulated Gastrointestinal Conditions and Some Biological Features of Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus rhamnosus Strains

    OpenAIRE

    Fratianni, Florinda; Pepe, Selenia; Cardinale, Federica; Granese, Tiziana; Cozzolino, Autilia; Coppola, Raffaele; Nazzaro, Filomena

    2014-01-01

    The growth and viability of three Lactobacillus strains, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus rhamnosus, after their passage through simulated gastric and pancreatic juices were studied as a function of their presence in the growth medium of rocket salad (Eruca sativa). The presence of E. sativa affected some of the biological properties of the strains. For example, L. acidophilus and L. plantarum worked more efficiently in the presence of E. sativa, increasing...

  2. The Current Status of the Space Station Biological Research Project: a Core Facility Enabling Multi-Generational Studies under Slectable Gravity Levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, O.

    2002-01-01

    The Space Station Biological Research Project (SSBRP) has developed a new plan which greatly reduces the development costs required to complete the facility. This new plan retains core capabilities while allowing for future growth. The most important piece of equipment required for quality biological research, the 2.5 meter diameter centrifuge capable of accommodating research specimen habitats at simulated gravity levels ranging from microgravity to 2.0 g, is being developed by NASDA, the Japanese space agency, for the SSBRP. This is scheduled for flight to the ISS in 2007. The project is also developing a multi-purpose incubator, an automated cell culture unit, and two microgravity habitat holding racks, currently scheduled for launch in 2005. In addition the Canadian Space Agency is developing for the project an insect habitat, which houses Drosophila melanogaster, and provides an internal centrifuge for 1 g controls. NASDA is also developing for the project a glovebox for the contained manipulation and analysis of biological specimens, scheduled for launch in 2006. This core facility will allow for experimentation on small plants (Arabidopsis species), nematode worms (C. elegans), fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster), and a variety of microorganisms, bacteria, yeast, and mammalian cells. We propose a plan for early utilization which focuses on surveys of changes in gene expression and protein structure due to the space flight environment. In the future, the project is looking to continue development of a rodent habitat and a plant habitat that can be accommodated on the 2.5 meter centrifuge. By utilizing the early phases of the ISS to broadly answer what changes occur at the genetic and protein level of cells and organisms exposed to the ISS low earth orbit environment, we can generate interest for future experiments when the ISS capabilities allow for direct manipulation and intervention of experiments. The ISS continues to hold promise for high quality, long

  3. Legislative Regulation of Traditional Medicinal Knowledge in Eritrea vis-à-vis Eritrea's Commitments under the Convention on Biological Diversity: Issues and Alternatives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Senai Andemariam

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available On 21 March 1996, Eritrea acceded to the Convention on Biological Diversity which, among others, obliges states to sustainably conserve and develop customary uses of biological resources. Among the many forms of traditional practices of biological resources is traditional medicinal knowledge. Research has revealed that Eritrea has abundant pool of such knowledge and a high percentage of its population, as it is true with many developing and underdeveloped countries, resorts to traditional medicine for curing numerous ailments. However, no specific policy or legislative framework has yet been developed to sift, preserve and encourage the practice. Analysis of existing Eritrean laws and policies will show that they are neither adequate nor specific enough to be used in the preservation and development of Eritrean traditional medicinal knowledge. This article will, therefore, in view of the rich, yet unregulated, traditional medicinal knowledge resource in Eritrea, highlight the need for the development of a specific legal instrument legislation for Eritrea from the perspective of international and country level experiences. It will be argued that the development of a specific legislation is preferred to the alternative of keeping traditional medicinal knowledge as a component of a legal instrument developed for a larger mass such as health or traditional knowledge.

  4. In vitro biological effectiveness of JRR-4 epithermal neutron beam. Experiment under free air beam and in water phantom. Cooperative research

    CERN Document Server

    Yamamoto, T; Horiguchi, Y; Kishi, T; Kumada, H; Matsumura, A; Nose, T; Torii, Y; Yamamoto, K

    2002-01-01

    The surviving curve and the biological effectiveness factor of dose components generated in boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) were separately determined in neutron beams at Japan Research Reactor No.4. Surviving fraction of V79 Chinese hamster cell with or without sup 1 sup 0 B was obtained using an epithermal neutron beam (ENB), a mixed thermal-epithermal neutron beam (TNB-1), and a thermal neutron beam (TNB-2), which were used or planned to use for BNCT clinical trial. The cell killing effect of these neutron beams with or without the presence of sup 1 sup 0 B depended highly on the neutron beam used, according to the epithermal and fast neutron content in the beam. The biological effectiveness factor values of the boron capture reaction for ENB, TNB-1 and TNB-2 were 3.99+-0.24, 3.04+-0.19 and 1.43+-0.08, respectively. The biological effectiveness factor values of the high-LET dose components based on the hydrogen recoils and the nitrogen capture reaction were 2.50+-0.32, 2.34+-0.30 and 2.17+-0.28 for EN...

  5. Development of biological and nonbiological explanations for the Viking label release data. [hydrogen peroxide theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    1980-01-01

    The plausibility that hydrogen peroxide, widely distributed within the Mars surface material, was responsible for the evocative response obtained by the Viking Labeled Release (LR) experiment on Mars was investigated. Although a mixture of gamma Fe2O3 and silica sand stimulated the LR nutrient reaction with hydrogen peroxide and reduced the rate of hydrogen decomposition under various storage conditions, the Mars analog soil prepared by the Viking Inorganic Analysis Team to match the Mars analytical data does not cause such effects. Nor is adequate resistance to UV irradiation shown. On the basis of the results and consideration presented while the hydrogen peroxide theory remains the most, if not only, attractive chemical explanation of the LR data, it remains unconvincing on critical points. Until problems concerning the formation and stabilization of hydrogen peroxide on the surface of Mars can be overcome, adhere to the scientific evidence requires serious consideration of the biological theory.

  6. Self-focused and other-focused resiliency: Plausible mechanisms linking early family adversity to health problems in college women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coleman, Sulamunn R M; Zawadzki, Matthew J; Heron, Kristin E; Vartanian, Lenny R; Smyth, Joshua M

    2016-01-01

    This study examined whether self-focused and other-focused resiliency help explain how early family adversity relates to perceived stress, subjective health, and health behaviors in college women. Female students (N = 795) participated between October 2009 and May 2010. Participants completed self-report measures of early family adversity, self-focused (self-esteem, personal growth initiative) and other-focused (perceived social support, gratitude) resiliency, stress, subjective health, and health behaviors. Using structural equation modeling, self-focused resiliency associated with less stress, better subjective health, more sleep, less smoking, and less weekend alcohol consumption. Other-focused resiliency associated with more exercise, greater stress, and more weekend alcohol consumption. Early family adversity was indirectly related to all health outcomes, except smoking, via self-focused and other-focused resiliency. Self-focused and other-focused resiliency represent plausible mechanisms through which early family adversity relates to stress and health in college women. This highlights areas for future research in disease prevention and management.

  7. Synchronous volcanic eruptions and abrupt climate change ∼17.7 ka plausibly linked by stratospheric ozone depletion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McConnell, Joseph R; Burke, Andrea; Dunbar, Nelia W; Köhler, Peter; Thomas, Jennie L; Arienzo, Monica M; Chellman, Nathan J; Maselli, Olivia J; Sigl, Michael; Adkins, Jess F; Baggenstos, Daniel; Burkhart, John F; Brook, Edward J; Buizert, Christo; Cole-Dai, Jihong; Fudge, T J; Knorr, Gregor; Graf, Hans-F; Grieman, Mackenzie M; Iverson, Nels; McGwire, Kenneth C; Mulvaney, Robert; Paris, Guillaume; Rhodes, Rachael H; Saltzman, Eric S; Severinghaus, Jeffrey P; Steffensen, Jørgen Peder; Taylor, Kendrick C; Winckler, Gisela

    2017-09-19

    Glacial-state greenhouse gas concentrations and Southern Hemisphere climate conditions persisted until ∼17.7 ka, when a nearly synchronous acceleration in deglaciation was recorded in paleoclimate proxies in large parts of the Southern Hemisphere, with many changes ascribed to a sudden poleward shift in the Southern Hemisphere westerlies and subsequent climate impacts. We used high-resolution chemical measurements in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide, Byrd, and other ice cores to document a unique, ∼192-y series of halogen-rich volcanic eruptions exactly at the start of accelerated deglaciation, with tephra identifying the nearby Mount Takahe volcano as the source. Extensive fallout from these massive eruptions has been found >2,800 km from Mount Takahe. Sulfur isotope anomalies and marked decreases in ice core bromine consistent with increased surface UV radiation indicate that the eruptions led to stratospheric ozone depletion. Rather than a highly improbable coincidence, circulation and climate changes extending from the Antarctic Peninsula to the subtropics-similar to those associated with modern stratospheric ozone depletion over Antarctica-plausibly link the Mount Takahe eruptions to the onset of accelerated Southern Hemisphere deglaciation ∼17.7 ka.

  8. The Plausibility of Tonal Evolution in the Malay Dialect Spoken in Thailand: Evidence from an Acoustic Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Phanintra Teeranon

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available The F0 values of vowels following voiceless consonants are higher than those of vowels following voiced consonants; high vowels have a higher F0 than low vowels. It has also been found that when high vowels follow voiced consonants, the F0 values decrease. In contrast, low vowels following voiceless consonants show increasing F0 values. In other words, the voicing of initial consonants has been found to counterbalance the intrinsic F0 values of high and low vowels (House and Fairbanks 1953, Lehiste and Peterson 1961, Lehiste 1970, Laver 1994, Teeranon 2006. To test whether these three findings are applicable to a disyllabic language, the F0 values of high and low vowels following voiceless and voiced consonants were studied in a Malay dialect of the Austronesian language family spoken in Pathumthani Province, Thailand. The data was collected from three male informants, aged 30-35. The Praat program was used for acoustic analysis. The findings revealed the influence of the voicing of initial consonants on the F0 of vowels to be greater than that of the influence of vowel height. Evidence from this acoustic study shows the plausibility for the Malay dialect spoken in Pathumthani to become a tonal language by the influence of initial consonants rather by the influence of the high-low vowel dimension.

  9. Bilinguals' Plausibility Judgments for Phrases with a Literal vs. Non-literal Meaning: The Influence of Language Brokering Experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Belem G. López

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Previous work has shown that prior experience in language brokering (informal translation may facilitate the processing of meaning within and across language boundaries. The present investigation examined the influence of brokering on bilinguals' processing of two word collocations with either a literal or a figurative meaning in each language. Proficient Spanish-English bilinguals classified as brokers or non-brokers were asked to judge if adjective+noun phrases presented in each language made sense or not. Phrases with a literal meaning (e.g., stinging insect were interspersed with phrases with a figurative meaning (e.g., stinging insult and non-sensical phrases (e.g., stinging picnic. It was hypothesized that plausibility judgments would be facilitated for literal relative to figurative meanings in each language but that experience in language brokering would be associated with a more equivalent pattern of responding across languages. These predictions were confirmed. The findings add to the body of empirical work on individual differences in language processing in bilinguals associated with prior language brokering experience.

  10. Evaluation of parameters of a plankton community's biological rhythms under the natural environment of the Black Sea using the Fourier transform method.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mel'nikova, Ye B

    2017-05-01

    Night-time changes in bioluminescence intensity in the coastal area of the Black Sea were recorded. It was noted that the biomass of luminous organisms is closely correlated with the biomass of plankton and other pelagic organisms, including commercial pelagic fish. The parameters of plankton communities' basic biological rhythms were determined using the discrete Fourier transform method. These rhythms were manifest as spatial and temporal changes in the bioluminescence intensity. It was shown that changes in the bioluminescence intensity over a 14.0-h period were due to the duration of the light/dark cycles. By contrast, changes in bioluminescence intensity with periods of 4.7 and 2.8 h were due to the endogenous rhythms of the plankton community (feeding and cell division). An original method for evaluating of errors in the calculated periods of the biological rhythms was proposed. A strong correlation (r = 0.906) was observed between the measured and calculated values for the bioluminescence intensity, which provided support for the assumptions made. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  11. Eficácia biológica de bifentrina aplicado em milho armazenado sob diferentes temperaturas Biological efficacy of applied bifenthrin in stored corn under different temperatures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco A. G. Pimentel

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available Considerando-se as altas temperaturas nos graneleiros junto à esteira transportadora de grãos objetivou-se, neste trabalho, avaliar a influência da temperatura no momento da pulverização, sobre a eficácia biológica do bifentrina. Para isso, pulverizou-se o inseticida sobre grãos de milho dentro de uma câmara climática nas temperaturas de 25, 30, 35, 40, 45 e 50 ºC, com umidade relativa em torno de 55%. Após a pulverização e a cada 15 dias, até completar 90 dias, foram feitas as análises da eficácia biológica utilizando-se os insetos Sitophilus zeamais Motschulsky (Coleoptera: Curculionidae, Rhyzopertha dominica (Fabricius (Coleoptera: Bostrichidae e Tribolium castaneum (Herbst (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae. Observou-se tendência decrescente da eficácia biológica do bifentrina com o aumento da temperatura do ar ambiente, no momento da pulverização e com o maior tempo de armazenamento dos grãos de milho, resultando em menor mortalidade dos insetos-praga.Considering the high temperatures in the granary ships alongwith the transporting mat, the objective of this paper was to evaluate the influence of the temperature at the moment of spraying on the biological effectiveness of the bifenthrin. For the purpose the insecticide was sprayed on maize grains inside a climatic chamber maintained at the temperatures of 25, 30, 35, 40, 45 and 50 ºC with relative humidity around 55%. After the spraying and every fifteen days up to 90 days, analyses of the biological effectiveness were made by using insects of the Sitophilus zeamais Motschulsky (Coleoptera: Curculionidae, Rhyzopertha dominica (Fabricius (Coleoptera: Bostrichidae and Tribolium castaneum (Herbst (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae. A decreasing tendency of the biological effectiveness of the bifenthrin was observed with the increase of the air temperature at the moment of spraying and with the increased time of maize storage, resulting in a smaller mortality of the insect-pest.

  12. Modern Biology

    OpenAIRE

    ALEKSIC, Branko

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this course is to learn the philosophy, principles, and techniques of modern biology. The course is particularly designed for those who have not learned biology previously or whose major is other than biology, and who may think that they do not need to know any biology at all. The topics are covered in a rather general, overview manner, but certain level of diligence in grasping concepts and memorizing the terminology is expected.

  13. Eruca sativa Might Influence the Growth, Survival under Simulated Gastrointestinal Conditions and Some Biological Features of Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus rhamnosus Strains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fratianni, Florinda; Pepe, Selenia; Cardinale, Federica; Granese, Tiziana; Cozzolino, Autilia; Coppola, Raffaele; Nazzaro, Filomena

    2014-01-01

    The growth and viability of three Lactobacillus strains, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus rhamnosus, after their passage through simulated gastric and pancreatic juices were studied as a function of their presence in the growth medium of rocket salad (Eruca sativa). The presence of E. sativa affected some of the biological properties of the strains. For example, L. acidophilus and L. plantarum worked more efficiently in the presence of E. sativa, increasing not only the antioxidant activity of the medium, but also their own antioxidant power and antimicrobial activity; L. rhamnosus was not affected in the same manner. Overall, the presence of vegetables might help to boost, in specific cases, some of the characteristics of lactobacilli, including antioxidant and antimicrobial power. PMID:25275269

  14. Under the Skin: Using Theories From Biology and the Social Sciences to Explore the Mechanisms Behind the Black–White Health Gap

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darity, William A.

    2010-01-01

    Equity and social well-being considerations make Black–White health disparities an area of important concern. Although previous research suggests that discrimination- and poverty-related stressors play a role in African American health outcomes, the mechanisms are unclear. Allostatic load is a concept that can be employed to demonstrate how environmental stressors, including psychosocial ones, may lead to a cumulative physiological toll on the body. We discuss both the usefulness of this framework for understanding how discrimination can lead to worse health among African Americans, and the challenges for conceptualizing biological risk with existing data and methods. We also contrast allostatic load with theories of historical trauma such as posttraumatic slavery syndrome. Finally, we offer our suggestions for future interdisciplinary research on health disparities. PMID:20147678

  15. Eruca sativa might influence the growth, survival under simulated gastrointestinal conditions and some biological features of Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus rhamnosus strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fratianni, Florinda; Pepe, Selenia; Cardinale, Federica; Granese, Tiziana; Cozzolino, Autilia; Coppola, Raffaele; Nazzaro, Filomena

    2014-10-01

    The growth and viability of three Lactobacillus strains, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus rhamnosus, after their passage through simulated gastric and pancreatic juices were studied as a function of their presence in the growth medium of rocket salad (Eruca sativa). The presence of E. sativa affected some of the biological properties of the strains. For example, L. acidophilus and L. plantarum worked more efficiently in the presence of E. sativa, increasing not only the antioxidant activity of the medium, but also their own antioxidant power and antimicrobial activity; L. rhamnosus was not affected in the same manner. Overall, the presence of vegetables might help to boost, in specific cases, some of the characteristics of lactobacilli, including antioxidant and antimicrobial power.

  16. Eruca sativa Might Influence the Growth, Survival under Simulated Gastrointestinal Conditions and Some Biological Features of Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus rhamnosus Strains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florinda Fratianni

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The growth and viability of three Lactobacillus strains, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus rhamnosus, after their passage through simulated gastric and pancreatic juices were studied as a function of their presence in the growth medium of rocket salad (Eruca sativa. The presence of E. sativa affected some of the biological properties of the strains. For example, L. acidophilus and L. plantarum worked more efficiently in the presence of E. sativa, increasing not only the antioxidant activity of the medium, but also their own antioxidant power and antimicrobial activity; L. rhamnosus was not affected in the same manner. Overall, the presence of vegetables might help to boost, in specific cases, some of the characteristics of lactobacilli, including antioxidant and antimicrobial power.

  17. Biological effects of the anti-parasitic chemotherapeutant emamectin benzoate on a non-target crustacean, the spot prawn (Pandalus platyceros Brandt, 1851) under laboratory conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veldhoen, Nik; Ikonomou, Michael G; Buday, Craig; Jordan, Jameson; Rehaume, Vicki; Cabecinha, Melissa; Dubetz, Cory; Chamberlain, Jon; Pittroff, Sabrina; Vallée, Kurtis; van Aggelen, Graham; Helbing, Caren C

    2012-02-01

    The potential impact of commercial salmon aquaculture along the coast of British Columbia on the health of non-target marine wildlife is of growing concern. In the current initiative, the biological effects on gene expression within spot prawn (Pandalus platyceros) exposed to the sea lice controlling agent, emamectin benzoate (EB; 0.1-4.8 mg/kg sediment), were investigated. A mean sediment/water partitioning coefficient (K(p)) was determined to be 21.81 and significant levels of EB were detected in the tail muscle tissue in all exposed animals. Animals selected for the experiment did not have eggs and were of similar weight. Significant mortality was observed within 8 days of EB treatment at concentrations between 0.1 and 0.8 mg/kg and there was no effect of EB on molting. Twelve spot prawn cDNA sequences were isolated from the tail muscle either by directed cloning or subtractive hybridization of control versus EB exposed tissues. Three of the transcripts most affected by EB exposure matched sequences encoding the 60S ribosomal protein L22, spliceosome RNA helicase WM6/UAP56, and the intracellular signal mediator histidine triad nucleotide binding protein 1 suggesting that translation, transcription regulation, and apoptosis pathways were impacted. The mRNA encoding the molting enzyme, β-N-acetylglucosaminidase, was not affected by EB treatment. However, the expression of this transcript was extremely variable making it unsuitable for effects assessment. The results suggest that short-term exposure to EB can impact biological processes within this non-target crustacean. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Biological effects of the anti-parasitic chemotherapeutant emamectin benzoate on a non-target crustacean, the spot prawn (Pandalus platyceros Brandt, 1851) under laboratory conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Veldhoen, Nik; Ikonomou, Michael G.; Buday, Craig; Jordan, Jameson; Rehaume, Vicki; Cabecinha, Melissa; Dubetz, Cory; Chamberlain, Jon; Pittroff, Sabrina; Vallée, Kurtis; Aggelen, Graham van; Helbing, Caren C.

    2012-01-01

    The potential impact of commercial salmon aquaculture along the coast of British Columbia on the health of non-target marine wildlife is of growing concern. In the current initiative, the biological effects on gene expression within spot prawn (Pandalus platyceros) exposed to the sea lice controlling agent, emamectin benzoate (EB; 0.1–4.8 mg/kg sediment), were investigated. A mean sediment/water partitioning coefficient (K p ) was determined to be 21.81 and significant levels of EB were detected in the tail muscle tissue in all exposed animals. Animals selected for the experiment did not have eggs and were of similar weight. Significant mortality was observed within 8 days of EB treatment at concentrations between 0.1 and 0.8 mg/kg and there was no effect of EB on molting. Twelve spot prawn cDNA sequences were isolated from the tail muscle either by directed cloning or subtractive hybridization of control versus EB exposed tissues. Three of the transcripts most affected by EB exposure matched sequences encoding the 60S ribosomal protein L22, spliceosome RNA helicase WM6/UAP56, and the intracellular signal mediator histidine triad nucleotide binding protein 1 suggesting that translation, transcription regulation, and apoptosis pathways were impacted. The mRNA encoding the molting enzyme, β-N-acetylglucosaminidase, was not affected by EB treatment. However, the expression of this transcript was extremely variable making it unsuitable for effects assessment. The results suggest that short-term exposure to EB can impact biological processes within this non-target crustacean.

  19. Biological effects of the anti-parasitic chemotherapeutant emamectin benzoate on a non-target crustacean, the spot prawn (Pandalus platyceros Brandt, 1851) under laboratory conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Veldhoen, Nik [Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, University of Victoria, P.O. Box 3055, Stn CSC, Victoria, BC, V8W 3P6 (Canada); Ikonomou, Michael G. [Institute of Ocean Sciences, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, 9860 West Saanich Road, P.O. Box 6000, Sidney, BC, V8L 4B2 (Canada); Buday, Craig [Pacific Environmental Science Centre, Environment Canada, 2645 Dollarton Highway, North Vancouver, BC, V7H 1V2 (Canada); Jordan, Jameson; Rehaume, Vicki; Cabecinha, Melissa [Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, University of Victoria, P.O. Box 3055, Stn CSC, Victoria, BC, V8W 3P6 (Canada); Dubetz, Cory; Chamberlain, Jon [Institute of Ocean Sciences, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, 9860 West Saanich Road, P.O. Box 6000, Sidney, BC, V8L 4B2 (Canada); Pittroff, Sabrina; Vallee, Kurtis [Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, University of Victoria, P.O. Box 3055, Stn CSC, Victoria, BC, V8W 3P6 (Canada); Aggelen, Graham van [Pacific Environmental Science Centre, Environment Canada, 2645 Dollarton Highway, North Vancouver, BC, V7H 1V2 (Canada); Helbing, Caren C., E-mail: chelbing@uvic.ca [Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, University of Victoria, P.O. Box 3055, Stn CSC, Victoria, BC, V8W 3P6 (Canada)

    2012-02-15

    The potential impact of commercial salmon aquaculture along the coast of British Columbia on the health of non-target marine wildlife is of growing concern. In the current initiative, the biological effects on gene expression within spot prawn (Pandalus platyceros) exposed to the sea lice controlling agent, emamectin benzoate (EB; 0.1-4.8 mg/kg sediment), were investigated. A mean sediment/water partitioning coefficient (K{sub p}) was determined to be 21.81 and significant levels of EB were detected in the tail muscle tissue in all exposed animals. Animals selected for the experiment did not have eggs and were of similar weight. Significant mortality was observed within 8 days of EB treatment at concentrations between 0.1 and 0.8 mg/kg and there was no effect of EB on molting. Twelve spot prawn cDNA sequences were isolated from the tail muscle either by directed cloning or subtractive hybridization of control versus EB exposed tissues. Three of the transcripts most affected by EB exposure matched sequences encoding the 60S ribosomal protein L22, spliceosome RNA helicase WM6/UAP56, and the intracellular signal mediator histidine triad nucleotide binding protein 1 suggesting that translation, transcription regulation, and apoptosis pathways were impacted. The mRNA encoding the molting enzyme, {beta}-N-acetylglucosaminidase, was not affected by EB treatment. However, the expression of this transcript was extremely variable making it unsuitable for effects assessment. The results suggest that short-term exposure to EB can impact biological processes within this non-target crustacean.

  20. The Mediterranean dietary pattern as the diet of choice for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease: Evidence and plausible mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zelber-Sagi, Shira; Salomone, Federico; Mlynarsky, Liat

    2017-07-01

    Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) has become a major global health burden, leading to increased risk for cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma, type-2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Lifestyle intervention aiming at weight reduction is the most established treatment. However, changing the dietary composition even without weight loss can also reduce steatosis and improve metabolic alterations as insulin resistance and lipid profile. The Mediterranean diet (MD) pattern has been proposed as appropriate for this goal, and was recommended as the diet of choice for the treatment of NAFLD by the EASL-EASD-EASO Clinical Practice Guidelines. The MD has an established superiority in long term weight reduction over low fat diet, but it improves metabolic status and steatosis even without it. However, the effect on liver inflammation and fibrosis was tested only in few observational studies with positive results. Furthermore, considering the strong association between NAFLD and diabetes and CVD, the MD has a highly established advantage in prevention of these diseases, demonstrated in randomized clinical trials. The individual components of the MD such as olive oil, fish, nuts, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, have been shown to beneficially effect or negatively correlate with NAFLD, while consumption of components that characterize a Western dietary pattern as soft drinks, fructose, meat and saturated fatty acids have been shown to have detrimental association with NAFLD. In this review we will cover the epidemiological evidence and the plausible molecular mechanisms by which the MD as a whole and each of its components can be of benefit in NAFLD. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. On Matrix Sampling and Imputation of Context Questionnaires with Implications for the Generation of Plausible Values in Large-Scale Assessments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaplan, David; Su, Dan

    2016-01-01

    This article presents findings on the consequences of matrix sampling of context questionnaires for the generation of plausible values in large-scale assessments. Three studies are conducted. Study 1 uses data from PISA 2012 to examine several different forms of missing data imputation within the chained equations framework: predictive mean…

  2. Mathematical biology

    CERN Document Server

    Murray, James D

    1993-01-01

    The book is a textbook (with many exercises) giving an in-depth account of the practical use of mathematical modelling in the biomedical sciences. The mathematical level required is generally not high and the emphasis is on what is required to solve the real biological problem. The subject matter is drawn, e.g. from population biology, reaction kinetics, biological oscillators and switches, Belousov-Zhabotinskii reaction, reaction-diffusion theory, biological wave phenomena, central pattern generators, neural models, spread of epidemics, mechanochemical theory of biological pattern formation and importance in evolution. Most of the models are based on real biological problems and the predictions and explanations offered as a direct result of mathematical analysis of the models are important aspects of the book. The aim is to provide a thorough training in practical mathematical biology and to show how exciting and novel mathematical challenges arise from a genuine interdisciplinary involvement with the biosci...

  3. A Facile and Efficient Synthesis of Diaryl Amines or Ethers under Microwave Irradiation at Presence of KF/Al2O3 without Solvent and Their Anti-Fungal Biological Activities against Six Phytopathogens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tao Zhang

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available A series of diaryl amines, ethers and thioethers were synthesized under microwave irradiation efficiently at presence of KF/Al2O3 in 83%–96% yields without any solvent. The salient characters of this method lie in short reaction time, high yields, general applicability to substrates and simple workup procedure. At the same time, their antifungal biological activities against six phytopathogen were evaluated. Most of the compounds (3b, 3c, 3g–o are more potent than thiophannate-methyl against to Magnaporthe oryzae. This implies that diaryl amine or ether moiety may be helpful in finding a fungicide against Magnaporthe oryzae.

  4. Biological characteristics of Anticarsia gemmatalis (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) for three consecutive generations under different temperatures: understanding the possible impact of global warming on a soybean pest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Silva, D M; Hoffmann-Campo, C B; de Freitas Bueno, A; de Freitas Bueno, R C O; de Oliveira, M C N; Moscardi, F

    2012-06-01

    Climate changes can affect the distribution and intensity of insect infestations through direct effects on their life cycles. Experiments were carried out during three consecutive generations to evaluate the effect of different temperatures (25°C, 28°C, 31°C, 34°C and 37±1°C) on biological traits of the velvetbean caterpillar Anticarsia gemmatalis Hübner, 1818 (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). The insects were fed on artificial diet and reared in environmental chambers set at 14 h photophase. The developmental cycle slowed with the increase in the temperature, within the 25°C to 34°C range. Male and female longevities were reduced with an increase in temperature from 25°C to 28°C. Egg viability was highest at 25°C, and the sex ratio was not influenced by temperature, in the three generations. There was no interactive effect between development time and temperature on pupal weight. The results suggested that the increase in the temperature negatively impacted A. gemmatalis development inside the studied temperature range, indicating a possible future reduction of its occurrence on soybean crops, as a consequence of global warming, mainly considering its impact on tropical countries where this plant is cropped. A. gemmatalis was not able to adapt to higher temperatures in a three-generation interval for the studied temperature range. However, a gradual increase and a longer adaptation period may favor insect selection and consequently adaptation, and must be considered in future studies in this area. Moreover, it is important to consider that global warming might turn cold areas more suitable to A. gemmatalis outbreaks. Therefore, more than a future reduction of A. gemmatalis occurrence due to global warming, we might expect changes regarding its area of occurrence on a global perspective.

  5. Removal of gaseous toluene by the combination of photocatalytic oxidation under complex light irradiation of UV and visible light and biological process

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wei Zaishan; Sun Jianliang; Xie Zhirong; Liang Mingyan; Chen Shangzhi

    2010-01-01

    Photocatalysis is a promising technology for treatment of gaseous waste; its disadvantages, however, include causing secondary pollution. Biofiltration has been known as an efficient technology for treatment volatile organic compounds (VOCs) at low cost of maintenance, and produces harmless by-products; its disadvantages, include large volume of bioreactor and slow adaptation to fluctuating concentrations in waste gas. A bench scale system integrated with a photocatalytic oxidation and a biofilter unit for the treatment of gases containing toluene was investigated. The integrated system can effectively oxidize toluene with high removal efficiency. The photocatalytic activity of N-TiO 2 /zeolite was evaluated by the decomposition of toluene in air under UV and visible light (VL) illumination. The N-TiO 2 /zeolite has more photocatalytic activity under complex light irradiation of UV and visible light for toluene removal than that of pure TiO 2 /zeolite under UV or visible light irradiation. N-TiO 2 /zeolite was characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectrum analysis (XPS), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), and as-obtained products were identified by means of gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS). Results revealed that the photocatalyst was porous and was high photoactive for mineralizing toluene. The high activity can be attributed to the results of the synergetic effects of strong UV and visible light absorption, surface hydroxyl groups. The photocatalytic degradation reaction of toluene with the N-TiO 2 /zeolite follows Langmuir-Hinshelwood kinetics. Toluene biodegradation rate matches enzymatic oxidation kinetics model.

  6. Biological therapeutics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Greenstein, Ben; Brook, Daniel A

    2011-01-01

    This introductory textbook covers all the main categories of biological medicines, including vaccines, hormonal preparations, drugs for rheumatoid arthritis and other connective tissue diseases, drugs...

  7. Cross-species comparison of biological themes and underlying genes on a global gene expression scale in a mouse model of colorectal liver metastasis and in clinical specimens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schirmacher Peter

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Invasion-related genes over-expressed by tumor cells as well as by reacting host cells represent promising drug targets for anti-cancer therapy. Such candidate genes need to be validated in appropriate animal models. Results This study examined the suitability of a murine model (CT26/Balb/C of colorectal liver metastasis to represent clinical liver metastasis specimens using a global gene expression approach. Cross-species similarity was examined between pure liver, liver invasion, tumor invasion and pure tumor compartments through overlap of up-regulated genes and gene ontology (GO-based biological themes on the level of single GO-terms and of condensed GO-term families. Three out of four GO-term families were conserved in a compartment-specific way between the species: secondary metabolism (liver, invasion (invasion front, and immune response (invasion front and liver. Among the individual GO-terms over-represented in the invasion compartments in both species were "extracellular matrix", "cell motility", "cell adhesion" and "antigen presentation" indicating that typical invasion related processes are operating in both species. This was reflected on the single gene level as well, as cross-species overlap of potential target genes over-expressed in the combined invasion front compartments reached up to 36.5%. Generally, histopathology and gene expression correlated well as the highest single gene overlap was found to be 44% in syn-compartmental comparisons (liver versus liver whereas cross-compartmental overlaps were much lower (e.g. liver versus tumor: 9.7%. However, single gene overlap was surprisingly high in some cross-compartmental comparisons (e.g. human liver invasion compartment and murine tumor invasion compartment: 9.0% despite little histolopathologic similarity indicating that invasion relevant genes are not necessarily confined to histologically defined compartments. Conclusion In summary, cross

  8. The role of biological activity of hydrohumate, produced from peat, in formation of adaptive response of rats under influence of chronic stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyanna, O. L.; Chorna, V. I.; Stepchenko, L. M.

    2009-04-01

    It is well known that humic compounds are the most distributed in nature among the organic matter. It is believed that humic polyphenol preparations, produced from the peat, represent adaptogenes and immunomodulators. But the total mechanism of their adaptogenic action is still completely unclear. In response to extraordinary irritant action, one of the most sensitive to stress and highly reactive systems of organism, endosomal-lysosomal cellular apparatus takes part. It is believed that humic compounds are able to penetrate through plasmatic membrane and by this way to affect on lysosomal proteases function. Among the wide range of lysosomal proteases, cysteine cathepsin L (EC 3.4.22.15) was in interest due to its powerful endopeptidase activity and widespread localization. Purpose. The aim of the work was to investigate the influence of humic acids on intracellular proteolysis in blood plasma and heart muscle of rats in adaptive-restorative processes developing in rat organisms as a result of chronic stress action. The experiment was held on Wistar's rats (160-200 g weight) which were divided into 4 groups: 1 - the control group; 2 - the animals which were received the hydrohumate with water (10 mg hydrohumate (0,1% solution) per 1 kg of weight) during 3 weeks; 3 - the group of stressed rats (test "forced swimming" for 2 hours); 4 - the stressed rats which received the hydrohumate. The activity of lysosomal cysteine cathepsin L was determined spectrophotometrically by usage 1% azocasein, denaturated by 3 M urea, as substrate. It was obtained that under hydrohumate influence the activity of lysosomal cysteine cathepsin L in rat blood plasma changed on 20% in comparison with control group that is suggested to be caused by leakage of tissue cathepsins from organs and tissues and kidneys' filtration of these cysteine enzymes in urine. In rat heart tissues it was obtained that cathepsin L activity level was on 26,8% higher in rats which were under stress influence in

  9. Is synthetic biology mechanical biology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holm, Sune

    2015-12-01

    A widespread and influential characterization of synthetic biology emphasizes that synthetic biology is the application of engineering principles to living systems. Furthermore, there is a strong tendency to express the engineering approach to organisms in terms of what seems to be an ontological claim: organisms are machines. In the paper I investigate the ontological and heuristic significance of the machine analogy in synthetic biology. I argue that the use of the machine analogy and the aim of producing rationally designed organisms does not necessarily imply a commitment to mechanical biology. The ideal of applying engineering principles to biology is best understood as expressing recognition of the machine-unlikeness of natural organisms and the limits of human cognition. The paper suggests an interpretation of the identification of organisms with machines in synthetic biology according to which it expresses a strategy for representing, understanding, and constructing living systems that are more machine-like than natural organisms.

  10. Changes in soil biological quality under legume- and maize-based farming systems in a humid savanna zone of Côte d’Ivoire

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tano Y.

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Studying the impact of farming systems on soil status is essential in determining the most relevant for a given agroecological zone. A trial was conducted in a West Africa humid savanna, aiming at assessing the short-term effects of farming systems on soil (0-10 cm organic carbon (SOC content and some soil microbiological properties. A randomized complete block experimental design with three replications, and the following treatments were used: Mucuna pruriens (Mucuna, Pueraria phaseoloides (Pueraria, Lablab purpureus (Lablab, a combination of these three legumes (Mixed-legumes, maize + urea (Maize-U, maize + triple super phosphate (Maize-Sp, maize + urea + triple super phosphate (Maize-USp, fertilizer-free maize continuous cropping (Maize-Tradi. Results indicated that SOC content was improved over time under legume-based systems. The relative increase was the highest with the legume association and Lablab, where SOC varied from 7.5 to 8.6 g.kg-1 (i.e. 14.7% and from 7.2 to 8.3 g.kg-1 (i.e. 15.3% respectively, between the start and the end of the trial. Besides, applying grass and maize residues as mulch on the ground, in association with inorganic fertilizers may be a way of improving SOC content in the short-term. Although legume-based systems exhibited highest values, microbial biomass carbon (MBC did not show any statistical significant differences between treatments. However, soil C mineralization and soil specific respiration were influenced by the farming systems, with higher mean values under legume-based systems (42 ± 7.6 mg C-CO2.g-1 Corg and 0.4 mg C-CO2.g-1 biomass C, respectively, compared to maize continuous cropping systems (33.1 ± 1.6 mg C-CO2.g-1 Corg and 0.3 mg C-CO2.g-1 biomass C, respectively. Thus, these parameters can be used as sensitive indicators of the early changes in soil organic matter quality. The integration of legumes cover crops in farming systems may contribute to improve soil quality that would lead to

  11. Computational biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hartmann, Lars Røeboe; Jones, Neil; Simonsen, Jakob Grue

    2011-01-01

    Computation via biological devices has been the subject of close scrutiny since von Neumann’s early work some 60 years ago. In spite of the many relevant works in this field, the notion of programming biological devices seems to be, at best, ill-defined. While many devices are claimed or proved t...

  12. Mesoscopic biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In this paper we present a qualitative outlook of mesoscopic biology where the typical length scale is of the order of nanometers and the energy scales comparable to thermal energy. Novel biomolecular machines, governed by coded information at the level of DNA and proteins, operate at these length scales in biological ...

  13. Development of natural cellulase inhibitor mediated intensified biological pretreatment technology using Pleurotus florida for maximum recovery of cellulose from paddy straw under solid state condition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naresh Kumar, Manickam; Ravikumar, Rajarathinam; Thenmozhi, Senniyappan; Kirupa Sankar, Muthuvelu

    2017-11-01

    Inhibitor mediated intensified bio-pretreatment (IMBP) technology using natural cellulase inhibitor (NCI) for maximum cellulose recovery from paddy straw was studied. Pretreatment was carried out under solid state condition. Supplementation of 8% NCI in pretreatment medium improves cellulose recovery and delignification by 1.2 and 1.5-fold respectively, compared to conventional bio-pretreatment due to inhibition of 61% of cellulase activity in IMBP. Further increase in NCI concentration showed negative effect on Pleurotus florida growth and suppress the laccase productivity by 1.1-fold. Laccase activity in IMBP was found to be 2.0U/mL on 19 th day, which is higher than (1.5U/mL) conventional bio-pretreatment. Physico-chemical modifications in paddy straw before and after pretreatment were analysed by SEM, ATR-FTIR, XRD and TGA. According to these findings, the IMBP technology can be a viable eco-friendly technology for sustainable production of bioethanol with maximum cellulose recovery. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Biology-Oriented Syntheses (BIOS) of Novel Santonic-1,3,4-oxadiazole Derivatives under Microwave-Irradiation and their Antimicrobial Activity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Salar, U.; Khan, K. M.; Naz, F.; Siddiqui, N. I.

    2015-01-01

    Novel 2-thio substituted 1,3,4-oxadiazole derivatives of santonic acid (13-18) were synthesized. The synthesis of these derivatives was comprised of six steps which start from the basic hydrolysis of santonin 1 to the santoninic acid 2 followed by in situ rearrangement of 2 into santonic acid 3. Santonic acid 3 was then converted into its acyl imidazole derivative 4 followed by hydrazinolysis to give santonic carbohydrazide 5 which was further converted into santonic-1,3,4-oxadiazole-2-thiol 6. Santonic-1,3,4-oxadiazole-2-thiol 6 was alkylated to afford 2-thio substituted 1,3,4-oxadiazole derivatives of santonic acid (13-18). All the synthetic steps were carried out under microwave irradiation in controlled parameters. Compounds 13-18 along with intervening intermediates 5 and 6 were evaluated for their antimicrobial potential. Compound 14 showed appreciably good activity against Staphylococcus epidermidis. On the other hand compounds 6 and 17 demonstrated good activity against Escherichia coli and Shigella flexeneri, respectively. Compound 6 showed good antifungal activity. The synthesized compounds were characterized by different spectroscopy techniques. (author)

  15. Using novel descriptor accounting for ligand-receptor interactions to define and visually explore biologically relevant chemical space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabal, Obdulia; Oyarzabal, Julen

    2012-05-25

    The definition and pragmatic implementation of biologically relevant chemical space is critical in addressing navigation strategies in the overlapping regions where chemistry and therapeutically relevant targets reside and, therefore, also key to performing an efficient drug discovery project. Here, we describe the development and implementation of a simple and robust method for representing biologically relevant chemical space as a general reference according to current knowledge, independently of any reference space, and analyzing chemical structures accordingly. Underlying our method is the generation of a novel descriptor (LiRIf) that converts structural information into a one-dimensional string accounting for the plausible ligand-receptor interactions as well as for topological information. Capitalizing on ligand-receptor interactions as a descriptor enables the clustering, profiling, and comparison of libraries of compounds from a chemical biology and medicinal chemistry perspective. In addition, as a case study, R-groups analysis is performed to identify the most populated ligand-receptor interactions according to different target families (GPCR, kinases, etc.), as well as to evaluate the coverage of biologically relevant chemical space by structures annotated in different databases (ChEMBL, Glida, etc.).

  16. A Color-Opponency Based Biological Model for Color Constancy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yongjie Li

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Color constancy is the ability of the human visual system to adaptively correct color-biased scenes under different illuminants. Most of the existing color constancy models are nonphysiologically plausible. Among the limited biological models, the great majority is Retinex and its variations, and only two or three models directly simulate the feature of color-opponency, but only of the very earliest stages of visual pathway, i.e., the single-opponent mechanisms involved at the levels of retinal ganglion cells and lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN neurons. Considering the extensive physiological evidences supporting that both the single-opponent cells in retina and LGN and the double-opponent neurons in primary visual cortex (V1 are the building blocks for color constancy, in this study we construct a color-opponency based color constancy model by simulating the opponent fashions of both the single-opponent and double-opponent cells in a forward manner. As for the spatial structure of the receptive fields (RF, both the classical RF (CRF center and the nonclassical RF (nCRF surround are taken into account for all the cells. The proposed model was tested on several typical image databases commonly used for performance evaluation of color constancy methods, and exciting results were achieved.

  17. The SAFRR Tsunami Scenario: Improving Resilience for California from a Plausible M9 Earthquake near the Alaska Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, S.; Jones, L.; Wilson, R. I.; Bahng, B.; Barberopoulou, A.; Borrero, J. C.; Brosnan, D.; Bwarie, J.; Geist, E. L.; Johnson, L.; Kirby, S. H.; Knight, W.; Long, K.; Lynett, P. J.; Miller, K.; Mortensen, C. E.; Nicolsky, D.; Oglesby, D. D.; Perry, S. C.; Plumlee, G. S.; Porter, K. A.; Real, C. R.; Ryan, K. J.; Suleimani, E.; Thio, H. K.; Titov, V.; Wein, A. M.; Whitmore, P.; Wood, N. J.

    2013-12-01

    The SAFRR Tsunami Scenario models a hypothetical but plausible tsunami, created by an Mw9.1 earthquake occurring offshore from the Alaskan peninsula, and its impacts on the California coast. We present the likely inundation areas, current velocities in key ports and harbors, physical damage and repair costs, economic consequences, environmental impacts, social vulnerability, emergency management, and policy implications for California associated with the tsunami scenario. The intended users are those who must make mitigation decisions before and rapid decisions during future tsunamis. Around a half million people would be present in the scenario's inundation area in residences, businesses, public venues, parks and beaches. Evacuation would likely be ordered for the State of California's maximum mapped tsunami inundation zone, evacuating an additional quarter million people from residences and businesses. Some island and peninsula communities would face particular evacuation challenges because of limited access options and short warning time, caused by the distance between Alaska and California. Evacuations may also be a challenge for certain dependent-care populations. One third of the boats in California's marinas could be damaged or sunk, costing at least 700 million in repairs to boats and docks, and potentially much more to address serious issues due to sediment transport and environmental contamination. Fires would likely start at many sites where fuel and petrochemicals are stored in ports and marinas. Tsunami surges and bores may travel several miles inland up coastal rivers. Debris clean-up and recovery of inundated and damaged areas will take days, months, or years depending on the severity of impacts and the available resources for recovery. The Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach (POLA/LB) would be shut down for a miniμm of two days due to strong currents. Inundation of dry land in the ports would result in 100 million damages to cargo and additional

  18. Looking for a Location: Dissociated Effects of Event-Related Plausibility and Verb–Argument Information on Predictive Processing in Aphasia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickey, Michael Walsh; Warren, Tessa

    2016-01-01

    Purpose This study examined the influence of verb–argument information and event-related plausibility on prediction of upcoming event locations in people with aphasia, as well as older and younger, neurotypical adults. It investigated how these types of information interact during anticipatory processing and how the ability to take advantage of the different types of information is affected by aphasia. Method This study used a modified visual-world task to examine eye movements and offline photo selection. Twelve adults with aphasia (aged 54–82 years) as well as 44 young adults (aged 18–31 years) and 18 older adults (aged 50–71 years) participated. Results Neurotypical adults used verb argument status and plausibility information to guide both eye gaze (a measure of anticipatory processing) and image selection (a measure of ultimate interpretation). Argument status did not affect the behavior of people with aphasia in either measure. There was only limited evidence of interaction between these 2 factors in eye gaze data. Conclusions Both event-related plausibility and verb-based argument status contributed to anticipatory processing of upcoming event locations among younger and older neurotypical adults. However, event-related likelihood had a much larger role in the performance of people with aphasia than did verb-based knowledge regarding argument structure. PMID:27997951

  19. Looking for a Location: Dissociated Effects of Event-Related Plausibility and Verb-Argument Information on Predictive Processing in Aphasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Rebecca A; Dickey, Michael Walsh; Warren, Tessa

    2016-12-01

    This study examined the influence of verb-argument information and event-related plausibility on prediction of upcoming event locations in people with aphasia, as well as older and younger, neurotypical adults. It investigated how these types of information interact during anticipatory processing and how the ability to take advantage of the different types of information is affected by aphasia. This study used a modified visual-world task to examine eye movements and offline photo selection. Twelve adults with aphasia (aged 54-82 years) as well as 44 young adults (aged 18-31 years) and 18 older adults (aged 50-71 years) participated. Neurotypical adults used verb argument status and plausibility information to guide both eye gaze (a measure of anticipatory processing) and image selection (a measure of ultimate interpretation). Argument status did not affect the behavior of people with aphasia in either measure. There was only limited evidence of interaction between these 2 factors in eye gaze data. Both event-related plausibility and verb-based argument status contributed to anticipatory processing of upcoming event locations among younger and older neurotypical adults. However, event-related likelihood had a much larger role in the performance of people with aphasia than did verb-based knowledge regarding argument structure.

  20. Biological desulfurisation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arena, B.J. [UOP LLC (United States); Benschop, A.; Janssen, A. [Paques Natural Solutions (Netherlands); Kijlstra, S. [Shell Global Solutions (Netherlands)

    2001-03-01

    This article focuses on the biological THIOPAQ process for removing hydrogen sulphide from refinery gases and recovering elemental sulphur. Details are given of the process which absorbs hydrogen sulphide-containing gas in alkaline solution prior to oxidation of the dissolved sulphur to elemental sulphur in a THIOPAQ aerobic biological reactor, with regeneration of the caustic solution. Sulphur handling options including sulphur wash, the drying of the sulphur cake, and sulphur smelting by pressure liquefaction are described. Agricultural applications of the biologically recovered sulphur, and application of the THIOPAQ process to sulphur recovery are discussed.

  1. Systems Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    IAS Admin

    study and understand the function of biological systems, particu- larly, the response of such .... understand the organisation and behaviour of prokaryotic sys- tems. ... relationship of the structure of a target molecule to its ability to bind a certain ...

  2. Simulating spinal border cells and cerebellar granule cells under locomotion--a case study of spinocerebellar information processing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anton Spanne

    Full Text Available The spinocerebellar systems are essential for the brain in the performance of coordinated movements, but our knowledge about the spinocerebellar interactions is very limited. Recently, several crucial pieces of information have been acquired for the spinal border cell (SBC component of the ventral spinocerebellar tract (VSCT, as well as the effects of SBC mossy fiber activation in granule cells of the cerebellar cortex. SBCs receive monosynaptic input from the reticulospinal tract (RST, which is an important driving system under locomotion, and disynaptic inhibition from Ib muscle afferents. The patterns of activity of RST neurons and Ib afferents under locomotion are known. The activity of VSCT neurons under fictive locomotion, i.e. without sensory feedback, is also known, but there is little information on how these neurons behave under actual locomotion and for cerebellar granule cells receiving SBC input this is completely unknown. But the available information makes it possible to simulate the interactions between the spinal and cerebellar neuronal circuitries with a relatively large set of biological constraints. Using a model of the various neuronal elements and the network they compose, we simulated the modulation of the SBCs and their target granule cells under locomotion and hence generated testable predictions of their general pattern of modulation under this condition. This particular system offers a unique opportunity to simulate these interactions with a limited number of assumptions, which helps making the model biologically plausible. Similar principles of information processing may be expected to apply to all spinocerebellar systems.

  3. 37 CFR 1.801 - Biological material.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 37 Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Biological material. 1.801... Biological Material § 1.801 Biological material. For the purposes of these regulations pertaining to the deposit of biological material for purposes of patents for inventions under 35 U.S.C. 101, the term...

  4. Systems biology at work

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martins Dos Santos, V.A.P.; Damborsky, J.

    2010-01-01

    In his editorial overview for the 2008 Special Issue on this topic, the late Jaroslav Stark pointedly noted that systems biology is no longer a niche pursuit, but a recognized discipline in its own right “noisily” coming of age [1]. Whilst general underlying principles and basic techniques are now

  5. Consequentialism and the Synthetic Biology Problem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heavey, Patrick

    2017-04-01

    This article analyzes the ethics of synthetic biology (synbio) from a consequentialist perspective, examining potential effects on food and agriculture, and on medicine, fuel, and the advancement of science. The issues of biosafety and biosecurity are also examined. A consequentialist analysis offers an essential road map to policymakers and regulators as to how to deal with synbio. Additionally, the article discusses the limitations of consequentialism as a tool for analysing synbioethics. Is it possible to predict, with any degree of plausibility, what the consequences of synthetic biology will be in 50 years, or in 100, or in 500? Synbio may take humanity to a place of radical departure from what is known or knowable.

  6. [Medical and biological consequences of nuclear disasters].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stalpers, Lukas J A; van Dullemen, Simon; Franken, N A P Klaas

    2012-01-01

    Medical risks of radiation exaggerated; psychological risks underestimated. The discussion about atomic energy has become topical again following the nuclear accident in Fukushima. There is some argument about the gravity of medical and biological consequences of prolonged exposure to radiation. The risk of cancer following a low dose of radiation is usually estimated by linear extrapolation of the incidence of cancer among survivors of the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. The radiobiological linear-quadratic model (LQ-model) gives a more accurate description of observed data, is radiobiologically more plausible and is better supported by experimental and clinical data. On the basis of this model there is less risk of cancer being induced following radiation exposure. The gravest consequence of Chernobyl and Fukushima is not the medical and biological damage, but the psychological and economical impact on rescue workers and former inhabitants.

  7. Parámetros químicos y biológicos como indicadores de calidad del suelo en diferentes manejos Chemical and biological parameters as indicators of soil quality under different managements

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Ferreras

    2009-06-01

    and enzymatic activities of acid phosphatase (Pasa, dehydrogenase (Dasa and urease (Uasa were determined in composite soil samples. The metabolic quotient (qCO2, the relationship between ARM and CBM, the enzymatic activities/COT ratio, and the CBM/ COT ratio were also calculated. For each experimental site, cropped plots presented lower values than undisturbed soil in most of the parameters analyzed (p <0.05. The soil cultivation caused large reductions in COT and COfg. The soybean monoculture, at the experimental site Oliveros, had lower Pasa and qCO2 with respect to corn- soybean-wheat/soybean crop rotation, although the MBC was higher (p <0.05. In Marcos Juarez site, the combined tillage treatment had lower CBM, Pasa, Dasa and Uasa, with respect no-tillage with cover crop (p <0.05. At the Rafaela experimental site, no differences were found in enzymatic activities, although the CBM showed differences between crop rotations. Significant differences were found in qCO2 at the cropped plots with respect to undisturbed soil at the Marcos Juárez experimental site. The higher values of qCO2 in cropped plots are indicative of higher maintenance energy of microorganisms. The Pasa/COT ratio in Marcos Juarez and the relationship between Pasa/COT and Uasa/COT in Rafaela, were lower in T than in cropped plots. One plausible explanation is that in cropped soils, organic carbon decreases at a faster rate than the reduction in enzyme activity, and thus the enzyme activity/COT is higher in cropped than in undisturbed soils. Alternatively, extracellular enzymes could bind to humified organic matter to form humoenzymatic complexes. Soil enzymes were positively correlated with COT and COfg. The assessment of biochemical parameters by means of MBC, qCO2 and enzyme activity of soils under different managements enables short-term changes in soil quality to be monitored. The evaluated soil parameters are shown in some situations be sensitive to anthropogenic disturbance and are well

  8. A systems biology-based approach to uncovering the molecular mechanisms underlying the effects of dragon's blood tablet in colitis, involving the integration of chemical analysis, ADME prediction, and network pharmacology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haiyu Xu

    Full Text Available Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM is one of the oldest East Asian medical systems. The present study adopted a systems biology-based approach to provide new insights relating to the active constituents and molecular mechanisms underlying the effects of dragon's blood (DB tablets for the treatment of colitis. This study integrated chemical analysis, prediction of absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion (ADME, and network pharmacology. Firstly, a rapid, reliable, and accurate ultra-performance liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry method was employed to identify 48 components of DB tablets. In silico prediction of the passive absorption of these compounds, based on Caco-2 cell permeability, and their P450 metabolism enabled the identification of 22 potentially absorbed components and 8 metabolites. Finally, networks were constructed to analyze interactions between these DB components/metabolites absorbed and their putative targets, and between the putative DB targets and known therapeutic targets for colitis. This study provided a great opportunity to deepen the understanding of the complex pharmacological mechanisms underlying the effects of DB in colitis treatment.

  9. Under Under Under / Merit Kask

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Kask, Merit

    2006-01-01

    20. nov. esietendub Kumu auditooriumis MTÜ Ühenduse R.A.A.A.M teatriprojekt "Under" poetess Marie Underist. Lavastajad Merle Karusoo ja Raimo Pass, kunstnik Jaagup Roomet, helilooja Urmas Lattikas, peaosas Katrin Saukas

  10. [Biological agents].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amano, Koichi

    2009-03-01

    There are two types of biological agents for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA); monoclonal antibodies and recombinant proteins. Among the latter, etanercept, a recombinant fusion protein of soluble TNF receptor and IgG was approved in 2005 in Japan. The post-marketing surveillance of 13,894 RA patients revealed the efficacy and safety profiles of etanercept in the Japanese population, as well as overseas studies. Abatacept, a recombinant fusion protein of CTLA4 and IgG, is another biological agent for RA. Two clinical trials disclosed the efficacy of abatacept for difficult-to-treat patients: the AIM for MTX-resistant cases and the ATTAIN for patients who are resistant to anti-TNF. The ATTEST trial suggested abatacept might have more acceptable safety profile than infliximab. These biologics are also promising for the treatment of RA for not only relieving clinical symptoms and signs but retarding structural damage.

  11. Biological preconcentrator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manginell, Ronald P [Albuquerque, NM; Bunker, Bruce C [Albuquerque, NM; Huber, Dale L [Albuquerque, NM

    2008-09-09

    A biological preconcentrator comprises a stimulus-responsive active film on a stimulus-producing microfabricated platform. The active film can comprise a thermally switchable polymer film that can be used to selectively absorb and desorb proteins from a protein mixture. The biological microfabricated platform can comprise a thin membrane suspended on a substrate with an integral resistive heater and/or thermoelectric cooler for thermal switching of the active polymer film disposed on the membrane. The active polymer film can comprise hydrogel-like polymers, such as poly(ethylene oxide) or poly(n-isopropylacrylamide), that are tethered to the membrane. The biological preconcentrator can be fabricated with semiconductor materials and technologies.

  12. Microgravity Fluids for Biology, Workshop

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffin, DeVon; Kohl, Fred; Massa, Gioia D.; Motil, Brian; Parsons-Wingerter, Patricia; Quincy, Charles; Sato, Kevin; Singh, Bhim; Smith, Jeffrey D.; Wheeler, Raymond M.

    2013-01-01

    Microgravity Fluids for Biology represents an intersection of biology and fluid physics that present exciting research challenges to the Space Life and Physical Sciences Division. Solving and managing the transport processes and fluid mechanics in physiological and biological systems and processes are essential for future space exploration and colonization of space by humans. Adequate understanding of the underlying fluid physics and transport mechanisms will provide new, necessary insights and technologies for analyzing and designing biological systems critical to NASAs mission. To enable this mission, the fluid physics discipline needs to work to enhance the understanding of the influence of gravity on the scales and types of fluids (i.e., non-Newtonian) important to biology and life sciences. In turn, biomimetic, bio-inspired and synthetic biology applications based on physiology and biology can enrich the fluid mechanics and transport phenomena capabilities of the microgravity fluid physics community.

  13. Communication on the structure of biological networks

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Introduction. Over the past few years, network science has drawn attention from a large number of ... The qualitative properties of biological networks cannot ... Here, we study the underlying undirected structure of empirical biological networks.

  14. Environmental biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tschumi, P.A.

    1981-01-01

    Environmental biology illustrates the functioning of ecosystems and the dynamics of populations with many examples from limnology and terrestrial ecology. On this basis, present environmental problems are analyzed. The present environmental crisis is seen as a result of the failure to observe ecological laws. (orig.) [de

  15. Biological timekeeping

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lloyd, David

    2016-01-01

    , the networks that connect differenttime domains and the oscillations, rhythms and biological clocks that coordinate andsynchronise the complexity of the living state.“It is the pattern maintained by this homeostasis, which is the touchstone ofour personal identity. Our tissues change as we live: the food we...

  16. Scaffolded biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minelli, Alessandro

    2016-09-01

    Descriptions and interpretations of the natural world are dominated by dichotomies such as organism vs. environment, nature vs. nurture, genetic vs. epigenetic, but in the last couple of decades strong dissatisfaction with those partitions has been repeatedly voiced and a number of alternative perspectives have been suggested, from perspectives such as Dawkins' extended phenotype, Turner's extended organism, Oyama's Developmental Systems Theory and Odling-Smee's niche construction theory. Last in time is the description of biological phenomena in terms of hybrids between an organism (scaffolded system) and a living or non-living scaffold, forming unit systems to study processes such as reproduction and development. As scaffold, eventually, we can define any resource used by the biological system, especially in development and reproduction, without incorporating it as happens in the case of resources fueling metabolism. Addressing biological systems as functionally scaffolded systems may help pointing to functional relationships that can impart temporal marking to the developmental process and thus explain its irreversibility; revisiting the boundary between development and metabolism and also regeneration phenomena, by suggesting a conceptual framework within which to investigate phenomena of regular hypermorphic regeneration such as characteristic of deer antlers; fixing a periodization of development in terms of the times at which a scaffolding relationship begins or is terminated; and promoting plant galls to legitimate study objects of developmental biology.

  17. Biological digestion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosevear, A.

    1988-01-01

    This paper discusses the biological degradation of non-radioactive organic material occurring in radioactive wastes. The biochemical steps are often performed using microbes or isolated enzymes in combination with chemical steps and the aim is to oxidise the carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen and sulphur to their respective oxides. (U.K.)

  18. Marine Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dewees, Christopher M.; Hooper, Jon K.

    1976-01-01

    A variety of informational material for a course in marine biology or oceanology at the secondary level is presented. Among the topics discussed are: food webs and pyramids, planktonic blooms, marine life, plankton nets, food chains, phytoplankton, zooplankton, larval plankton and filter feeders. (BT)

  19. Cortically-controlled population stochastic facilitation as a plausible substrate for guiding sensory transfer across the thalamic gateway.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sébastien Béhuret

    Full Text Available The thalamus is the primary gateway that relays sensory information to the cerebral cortex. While a single recipient cortical cell receives the convergence of many principal relay cells of the thalamus, each thalamic cell in turn integrates a dense and distributed synaptic feedback from the cortex. During sensory processing, the influence of this functional loop remains largely ignored. Using dynamic-clamp techniques in thalamic slices in vitro, we combined theoretical and experimental approaches to implement a realistic hybrid retino-thalamo-cortical pathway mixing biological cells and simulated circuits. The synaptic bombardment of cortical origin was mimicked through the injection of a stochastic mixture of excitatory and inhibitory conductances, resulting in a gradable correlation level of afferent activity shared by thalamic cells. The study of the impact of the simulated cortical input on the global retinocortical signal transfer efficiency revealed a novel control mechanism resulting from the collective resonance of all thalamic relay neurons. We show here that the transfer efficiency of sensory input transmission depends on three key features: i the number of thalamocortical cells involved in the many-to-one convergence from thalamus to cortex, ii the statistics of the corticothalamic synaptic bombardment and iii the level of correlation imposed between converging thalamic relay cells. In particular, our results demonstrate counterintuitively that the retinocortical signal transfer efficiency increases when the level of correlation across thalamic cells decreases. This suggests that the transfer efficiency of relay cells could be selectively amplified when they become simultaneously desynchronized by the cortical feedback. When applied to the intact brain, this network regulation mechanism could direct an attentional focus to specific thalamic subassemblies and select the appropriate input lines to the cortex according to the descending

  20. IAEA biological reference materials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Parr, R.M.; Schelenz, R.; Ballestra, S.

    1988-01-01

    The Analytical Quality Control Services programme of the IAEA encompasses a wide variety of intercomparisons and reference materials. This paper reviews only those aspects of the subject having to do with biological reference materials. The 1988 programme foresees 13 new intercomparison exercises, one for major, minor and trace elements, five for radionuclides, and seven for stable isotopes. Twenty-two natural matrix biological reference materials are available: twelve for major, minor and trace elements, six for radionuclides, and four for chlorinated hydrocarbons. Seven new intercomparisons and reference materials are in preparation or under active consideration. Guidelines on the correct use of reference materials are being prepared for publication in 1989 in consultation with other major international producers and users of biological reference materials. The IAEA database on available reference materials is being updated and expanded in scope, and a new publication is planned for 1989. (orig.)

  1. Does the concept of "sensitization" provide a plausible mechanism for the putative link between the environment and schizophrenia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collip, Dina; Myin-Germeys, Inez; Van Os, Jim

    2008-03-01

    Previous evidence reviewed in Schizophrenia Bulletin suggests the importance of a range of different environmental factors in the development of psychotic illness. It is unlikely, however, that the diversity of environmental influences associated with schizophrenia can be linked to as many different underlying mechanisms. There is evidence that environmental exposures may induce, in interaction with (epi)genetic factors, psychological or physiological alterations that can be traced to a final common pathway of cognitive biases and/or altered dopamine neurotransmission, broadly referred to as "sensitization," facilitating the onset and persistence of psychotic symptoms. At the population level, the behavioral phenotype for sensitization may be examined by quantifying, in populations exposed to environmental risk factors associated with stress or dopamine-agonist drugs, (1) the increased rate of persistence (indicating lasting sensitization) of normally transient developmental expressions of subclinical psychotic experiences and (2) the subsequent increased rate of transition to clinical psychotic disorder.

  2. Biological substantiation of antipsychotic-associated pneumonia: Systematic literature review and computational analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sultana, Janet; Calabró, Marco; Garcia-Serna, Ricard; Ferrajolo, Carmen; Crisafulli, Concetta; Mestres, Jordi; Trifirò', Gianluca

    2017-01-01

    Antipsychotic (AP) safety has been widely investigated. However, mechanisms underlying AP-associated pneumonia are not well-defined. The aim of this study was to investigate the known mechanisms of AP-associated pneumonia through a systematic literature review, confirm these mechanisms using an independent data source on drug targets and attempt to identify novel AP drug targets potentially linked to pneumonia. A search was conducted in Medline and Web of Science to identify studies exploring the association between pneumonia and antipsychotic use, from which information on hypothesized mechanism of action was extracted. All studies had to be in English and had to concern AP use as an intervention in persons of any age and for any indication, provided that the outcome was pneumonia. Information on the study design, population, exposure, outcome, risk estimate and mechanism of action was tabulated. Public repositories of pharmacology and drug safety data were used to identify the receptor binding profile and AP safety events. Cytoscape was then used to map biological pathways that could link AP targets and off-targets to pneumonia. The literature search yielded 200 articles; 41 were included in the review. Thirty studies reported a hypothesized mechanism of action, most commonly activation/inhibition of cholinergic, histaminergic and dopaminergic receptors. In vitro pharmacology data confirmed receptor affinities identified in the literature review. Two targets, thromboxane A2 receptor (TBXA2R) and platelet activating factor receptor (PTAFR) were found to be novel AP target receptors potentially associated with pneumonia. Biological pathways constructed using Cytoscape identified plausible biological links potentially leading to pneumonia downstream of TBXA2R and PTAFR. Innovative approaches for biological substantiation of drug-adverse event associations may strengthen evidence on drug safety profiles and help to tailor pharmacological therapies to patient risk

  3. Biological radioprotector

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stefanescu, Ioan; Titescu, Gheorghe; Tamaian, Radu; Haulica, Ion; Bild, Walther

    2002-01-01

    According to the patent description, the biological radioprotector is deuterium depleted water, DDW, produced by vacuum distillation with an isotopic content lower than natural value. It appears as such or in a mixture with natural water and carbon dioxide. It can be used for preventing and reducing the ionizing radiation effects upon humans or animal organisms, exposed therapeutically, professionally or accidentally to radiation. The most significant advantage of using DDW as biological radioprotector results from its way of administration. Indeed no one of the radioprotectors currently used today can be orally administrated, what reduces the patients' compliance to prophylactic administrations. The biological radioprotector is an unnoxious product obtained from natural water, which can be administrated as food additive instead of drinking water. Dose modification factor is according to initial estimates around 1.9, what is a remarkable feature when one takes into account that the product is toxicity-free and side effect-free and can be administrated prophylactically as a food additive. A net radioprotective action of the deuterium depletion was evidenced experimentally in laboratory animals (rats) hydrated with DDW of 30 ppm D/(D+H) concentration as compared with normally hydrated control animals. Knowing the effects of irradiation and mechanisms of the acute radiation disease as well as the effects of administration of radiomimetic chemicals upon cellular lines of fast cell division, it appears that the effects of administrating DDW result from stimulation of the immunity system. In conclusion, the biological radioprotector DDW presents the following advantages: - it is obtained from natural products without toxicity; - it is easy to be administrated as a food additive, replacing the drinking water; - besides radioprotective effects, the product has also immunostimulative and antitumoral effects

  4. Systems biology elucidates common pathogenic mechanisms between nonalcoholic and alcoholic-fatty liver disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia Sookoian

    Full Text Available The abnormal accumulation of fat in the liver is often related either to metabolic risk factors associated with metabolic syndrome in the absence of alcohol consumption (nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, NAFLD or to chronic alcohol consumption (alcoholic fatty liver disease, AFLD. Clinical and histological studies suggest that NAFLD and AFLD share pathogenic mechanisms. Nevertheless, current data are still inconclusive as to whether the underlying biological process and disease pathways of NAFLD and AFLD are alike. Our primary aim was to integrate omics and physiological data to answer the question of whether NAFLD and AFLD share molecular processes that lead to disease development. We also explored the extent to which insulin resistance (IR is a distinctive feature of NAFLD. To answer these questions, we used systems biology approaches, such as gene enrichment analysis, protein-protein interaction networks, and gene prioritization, based on multi-level data extracted by computational data mining. We observed that the leading disease pathways associated with NAFLD did not significantly differ from those of AFLD. However, systems biology revealed the importance of each molecular process behind each of the two diseases, and dissected distinctive molecular NAFLD and AFLD-signatures. Comparative co-analysis of NAFLD and AFLD clarified the participation of NAFLD, but not AFLD, in cardiovascular disease, and showed that insulin signaling is impaired in fatty liver regardless of the noxa, but the putative regulatory mechanisms associated with NAFLD seem to encompass a complex network of genes and proteins, plausible of epigenetic modifications. Gene prioritization showed a cancer-related functional map that suggests that the fatty transformation of the liver tissue is regardless of the cause, an emerging mechanism of ubiquitous oncogenic activation. In conclusion, similar underlying disease mechanisms lead to NAFLD and AFLD, but specific ones depict a

  5. Stochastic Methods in Biology

    CERN Document Server

    Kallianpur, Gopinath; Hida, Takeyuki

    1987-01-01

    The use of probabilistic methods in the biological sciences has been so well established by now that mathematical biology is regarded by many as a distinct dis­ cipline with its own repertoire of techniques. The purpose of the Workshop on sto­ chastic methods in biology held at Nagoya University during the week of July 8-12, 1985, was to enable biologists and probabilists from Japan and the U. S. to discuss the latest developments in their respective fields and to exchange ideas on the ap­ plicability of the more recent developments in stochastic process theory to problems in biology. Eighteen papers were presented at the Workshop and have been grouped under the following headings: I. Population genetics (five papers) II. Measure valued diffusion processes related to population genetics (three papers) III. Neurophysiology (two papers) IV. Fluctuation in living cells (two papers) V. Mathematical methods related to other problems in biology, epidemiology, population dynamics, etc. (six papers) An important f...

  6. Perchlorate-Coupled Carbon Monoxide (CO Oxidation: Evidence for a Plausible Microbe-Mediated Reaction in Martian Brines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marisa R. Myers

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The presence of hydrated salts on Mars indicates that some regions of its surface might be habitable if suitable metabolizable substrates are available. However, several lines of evidence have shown that Mars’ regolith contains only trace levels of the organic matter needed to support heterotrophic microbes. Due to the scarcity of organic carbon, carbon monoxide (CO at a concentration of about 700 parts per million (about 0.4 Pa might be the single most abundant readily available substrate that could support near-surface bacterial activity. Although a variety of electron acceptors can be coupled to CO oxidation, perchlorate is likely the most abundant potential oxidant in Mars’ brines. Whether perchlorate, a potent chaotrope, can support microbial CO oxidation has not been previously documented. We report here the first evidence for perchlorate-coupled CO oxidation based on assays with two distinct euryarchaeal extreme halophiles. CO oxidation occurred readily in 3.8 M NaCl brines with perchlorate concentrations from 0.01 to 1 M. Both isolates were able to couple CO with perchlorate or chlorate under anaerobic conditions with or without nitrate as an inducer for nitrate reductase, which serves as a perchlorate reductase in extreme halophiles. In the presence of perchlorate, CO concentrations were reduced to levels well below those found in Mars’ atmosphere. This indicates that CO could contribute to the survival of microbial populations in hydrated salt formations or brines if water activities are suitably permissive.

  7. Structural Biology Fact Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... NIGMS NIGMS Home > Science Education > Structural Biology Structural Biology Tagline (Optional) Middle/Main Content Area PDF Version (688 KB) Other Fact Sheets What is structural biology? Structural biology is the study of how biological ...

  8. Molecular Biology and Prevention of Endometrial Cancer

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Maxwell, George L

    2006-01-01

    To increase our understanding of the molecular aberrations associated with endometrial carcinogenesis and the biologic mechanisms underlying the protective effect of oral contraceptive (OC) therapy. 1...

  9. Molecular Biology and Prevention of Endometrial Cancer

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Maxwell, George

    2003-01-01

    To increase our understanding of the molecular aberrations associated with endometrial carcinogenesis and the biologic mechanisms underlying the protective effect of oral contraceptive therapy. Methods: 1...

  10. Molecular Biology and Prevention of Endometrial Cancer

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Maxwell, George L

    2004-01-01

    To increase our understanding of the molecular aberrations associated with endometrial carcinogenesis and the biologic mechanisms underlying the protective effect of oral contraceptive therapy. Methods: 1...

  11. Anticipating and Communicating Plausible Environmental and Health Concerns Associated with Future Disasters: The ShakeOut and ARkStorm Scenarios as Examples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plumlee, G. S.; Morman, S. A.; Alpers, C. N.; Hoefen, T. M.; Meeker, G. P.

    2010-12-01

    Disasters commonly pose immediate threats to human safety, but can also produce hazardous materials (HM) that pose short- and long-term environmental-health threats. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has helped assess potential environmental health characteristics of HM produced by various natural and anthropogenic disasters, such as the 2001 World Trade Center collapse, 2005 hurricanes Katrina and Rita, 2007-2009 southern California wildfires, various volcanic eruptions, and others. Building upon experience gained from these responses, we are now developing methods to anticipate plausible environmental and health implications of the 2008 Great Southern California ShakeOut scenario (which modeled the impacts of a 7.8 magnitude earthquake on the southern San Andreas fault, http://urbanearth.gps.caltech.edu/scenario08/), and the recent ARkStorm scenario (modeling the impacts of a major, weeks-long winter storm hitting nearly all of California, http://urbanearth.gps.caltech.edu/winter-storm/). Environmental-health impacts of various past earthquakes and extreme storms are first used to identify plausible impacts that could be associated with the disaster scenarios. Substantial insights can then be gleaned using a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) approach to link ShakeOut and ARkStorm effects maps with data extracted from diverse database sources containing geologic, hazards, and environmental information. This type of analysis helps constrain where potential geogenic (natural) and anthropogenic sources of HM (and their likely types of contaminants or pathogens) fall within areas of predicted ShakeOut-related shaking, firestorms, and landslides, and predicted ARkStorm-related precipitation, flooding, and winds. Because of uncertainties in the event models and many uncertainties in the databases used (e.g., incorrect location information, lack of detailed information on specific facilities, etc.) this approach should only be considered as the first of multiple steps

  12. Biology Branch

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baldwin, W F

    1974-12-31

    Progress is reported on the following studies in biochemistry and molecular biology: study of long pyrimidine polynucleotides in DNA; isolation of thymine dimers from Schizosaccharomyces pombe; thermal stability of high molecular weight RNA; nucleases of Micrococcus radiodurans; effect of ionizing radiation on M. radiodurans cell walls and cell membranes; chemical modification of nucleotides; exonucleases of M. radiodurans; and enzymatic basis of repair of radioinduced damage in M. radiodurans. Genetics, development, and population studies include repair pathways and mutation induction in yeast; induction of pure mutant clones in yeast; radiosensitivity of bacteriophage T4; polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of bacteriophage T4; radiation genetics of Dahibominus; and radiation studies on bitting flies. (HLW)

  13. Biological biomaterials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jorge-Herrero, E. [Servicio de Cirugia Experimental. Clinica Puerta de Hierro, Madrid (Spain)

    1997-05-01

    There are a number of situations in which substances of biological origin are employed as biomaterials. Most of them are macromolecules derived from isolated connective tissue or the connective tissue itself in membrane form, in both cases, the tissue can be used in its natural form or be chemically treated. In other cases, certain blood vessels can be chemically pretreated and used as vascular prostheses. Proteins such as albumin, collagen and fibrinogen are employed to coat vascular prostheses. Certain polysaccharides have also been tested for use in controlled drug release systems. Likewise, a number of tissues, such as dura mater, bovine pericardium, procine valves and human valves, are used in the preparation of cardiac prostheses. We also use veins from animals or humans in arterial replacement. In none of these cases are the tissues employed dissimilar to the native tissues as they have been chemically modified, becoming a new bio material with different physical and biochemical properties. In short, we find that natural products are being utilized as biomaterials and must be considered as such; thus, it is necessary to study both their chemicobiological and physicomechanical properties. In the present report, we review the current applications, problems and future prospects of some of these biological biomaterials. (Author) 84 refs.

  14. A Systems Biology Analysis Unfolds the Molecular Pathways and Networks of Two Proteobacteria in Spaceflight and Simulated Microgravity Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Raktim; Shilpa, P Phani; Bagh, Sangram

    2016-09-01

    Bacteria are important organisms for space missions due to their increased pathogenesis in microgravity that poses risks to the health of astronauts and for projected synthetic biology applications at the space station. We understand little about the effect, at the molecular systems level, of microgravity on bacteria, despite their significant incidence. In this study, we proposed a systems biology pipeline and performed an analysis on published gene expression data sets from multiple seminal studies on Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium under spaceflight and simulated microgravity conditions. By applying gene set enrichment analysis on the global gene expression data, we directly identified a large number of new, statistically significant cellular and metabolic pathways involved in response to microgravity. Alteration of metabolic pathways in microgravity has rarely been reported before, whereas in this analysis metabolic pathways are prevalent. Several of those pathways were found to be common across studies and species, indicating a common cellular response in microgravity. We clustered genes based on their expression patterns using consensus non-negative matrix factorization. The genes from different mathematically stable clusters showed protein-protein association networks with distinct biological functions, suggesting the plausible functional or regulatory network motifs in response to microgravity. The newly identified pathways and networks showed connection with increased survival of pathogens within macrophages, virulence, and antibiotic resistance in microgravity. Our work establishes a systems biology pipeline and provides an integrated insight into the effect of microgravity at the molecular systems level. Systems biology-Microgravity-Pathways and networks-Bacteria. Astrobiology 16, 677-689.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coley, John D; Tanner, Kimberly

    2015-03-02

    Research and theory development in cognitive psychology and science education research remain largely isolated. Biology education researchers have documented persistent scientifically inaccurate ideas, often termed misconceptions, among biology students across biological domains. In parallel, cognitive and developmental psychologists have described intuitive conceptual systems--teleological, essentialist, and anthropocentric thinking--that humans use to reason about biology. We hypothesize that seemingly unrelated biological misconceptions may have common origins in these intuitive ways of knowing, termed cognitive construals. We presented 137 undergraduate biology majors and nonmajors with six biological misconceptions. They indicated their agreement with each statement, and explained their rationale for their response. Results indicate frequent agreement with misconceptions, and frequent use of construal-based reasoning among both biology majors and nonmajors in their written explanations. Moreover, results also show associations between specific construals and the misconceptions hypothesized to arise from those construals. Strikingly, such associations were stronger among biology majors than nonmajors. These results demonstrate important linkages between intuitive ways of thinking and misconceptions in discipline-based reasoning, and raise questions about the origins, persistence, and generality of relations between intuitive reasoning and biological misconceptions. © 2015 J. D. Coley and K. Tanner. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2015 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  16. Biological effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trott, K.R.

    1973-01-01

    Following an introduction into the field of cellular radiation effect considering the most important experimental results, the biological significance of the colony formation ability is brought out. The inactivation concept of stem cells does not only prove to be good, according to the present results, in the interpretation of the pathogenesis of acute radiation effects on moult tissue, it also enables chronicle radiation injuries to be interpreted through changes in the fibrous part of the organs. Radiation therapy of tumours can also be explained to a large extent by the radiation effect on the unlimited reproductiveness of tumour cells. The more or less similar dose effect curves for healthy and tumour tissue in practice lead to intermittent irradiation. The dependence of the intermittent doses and intervals on factors such as Elkind recovery, synchronisation, redistribution, reoxygenation, repopulation and regeneration are reviewed. (ORU/LH) [de

  17. Biological formal counterparts of logical machines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moreno-diaz, R; Hernandez Guarch, F

    1983-01-01

    The significance of the McCulloch-Pitts formal neural net theory (1943) is still nowadays frequently misunderstood, and their basic units are wrongly considered as factual models for neurons. As a consequence, the whole original theory and its later addenda are unreasonably criticized for their simplicity. But, as it was proved then and since, the theory is after the modular neurophysiological counterpart of logical machines, so that it actually provides biologically plausible models for automata, turing machines, etc., and not vice versa. In its true context, no theory has surpassed its proposals. In McCulloch and Pitts memoriam and for the sake of future theoretical research, the authors stress this important historical point, including also some recent results on the neurophysiological counterparts of modular arbitrary probabilistic automata. 16 references.

  18. Creating biological nanomaterials using synthetic biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rice, MaryJoe K; Ruder, Warren C

    2014-01-01

    Synthetic biology is a new discipline that combines science and engineering approaches to precisely control biological networks. These signaling networks are especially important in fields such as biomedicine and biochemical engineering. Additionally, biological networks can also be critical to the production of naturally occurring biological nanomaterials, and as a result, synthetic biology holds tremendous potential in creating new materials. This review introduces the field of synthetic biology, discusses how biological systems naturally produce materials, and then presents examples and strategies for incorporating synthetic biology approaches in the development of new materials. In particular, strategies for using synthetic biology to produce both organic and inorganic nanomaterials are discussed. Ultimately, synthetic biology holds the potential to dramatically impact biological materials science with significant potential applications in medical systems. (review)

  19. Creating biological nanomaterials using synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, MaryJoe K; Ruder, Warren C

    2014-02-01

    Synthetic biology is a new discipline that combines science and engineering approaches to precisely control biological networks. These signaling networks are especially important in fields such as biomedicine and biochemical engineering. Additionally, biological networks can also be critical to the production of naturally occurring biological nanomaterials, and as a result, synthetic biology holds tremendous potential in creating new materials. This review introduces the field of synthetic biology, discusses how biological systems naturally produce materials, and then presents examples and strategies for incorporating synthetic biology approaches in the development of new materials. In particular, strategies for using synthetic biology to produce both organic and inorganic nanomaterials are discussed. Ultimately, synthetic biology holds the potential to dramatically impact biological materials science with significant potential applications in medical systems.

  20. Embodied learning of a generative neural model for biological motion perception and inference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schrodt, Fabian; Layher, Georg; Neumann, Heiko; Butz, Martin V

    2015-01-01

    Although an action observation network and mirror neurons for understanding the actions and intentions of others have been under deep, interdisciplinary consideration over recent years, it remains largely unknown how the brain manages to map visually perceived biological motion of others onto its own motor system. This paper shows how such a mapping may be established, even if the biologically motion is visually perceived from a new vantage point. We introduce a learning artificial neural network model and evaluate it on full body motion tracking recordings. The model implements an embodied, predictive inference approach. It first learns to correlate and segment multimodal sensory streams of own bodily motion. In doing so, it becomes able to anticipate motion progression, to complete missing modal information, and to self-generate learned motion sequences. When biological motion of another person is observed, this self-knowledge is utilized to recognize similar motion patterns and predict their progress. Due to the relative encodings, the model shows strong robustness in recognition despite observing rather large varieties of body morphology and posture dynamics. By additionally equipping the model with the capability to rotate its visual frame of reference, it is able to deduce the visual perspective onto the observed person, establishing full consistency to the embodied self-motion encodings by means of active inference. In further support of its neuro-cognitive plausibility, we also model typical bistable perceptions when crucial depth information is missing. In sum, the introduced neural model proposes a solution to the problem of how the human brain may establish correspondence between observed bodily motion and its own motor system, thus offering a mechanism that supports the development of mirror neurons.

  1. Embodied Learning of a Generative Neural Model for Biological Motion Perception and Inference

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabian eSchrodt

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Although an action observation network and mirror neurons for understanding the actions and intentions of others have been under deep, interdisciplinary consideration over recent years, it remains largely unknown how the brain manages to map visually perceived biological motion of others onto its own motor system. This paper shows how such a mapping may be established, even if the biologically motion is visually perceived from a new vantage point. We introduce a learning artificial neural network model and evaluate it on full body motion tracking recordings. The model implements an embodied, predictive inference approach. It first learns to correlate and segment multimodal sensory streams of own bodily motion. In doing so, it becomes able to anticipate motion progression, to complete missing modal information, and to self-generate learned motion sequences. When biological motion of another person is observed, this self-knowledge is utilized to recognize similar motion patterns and predict their progress. Due to the relative encodings, the model shows strong robustness in recognition despite observing rather large varieties of body morphology and posture dynamics. By additionally equipping the model with the capability to rotate its visual frame of reference, it is able to deduce the visual perspective onto the observed person, establishing full consistency to the embodied self-motion encodings by means of active inference. In further support of its neuro-cognitive plausibility, we also model typical bistable perceptions when crucial depth information is missing. In sum, the introduced neural model proposes a solution to the problem of how the human brain may establish correspondence between observed bodily motion and its own motor system, thus offering a mechanism that supports the development of mirror neurons.

  2. Plausibility Arguments and Universal Gravitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunha, Ricardo F. F.; Tort, A. C.

    2017-01-01

    Newton's law of universal gravitation underpins our understanding of the dynamics of the Solar System and of a good portion of the observable universe. Generally, in the classroom or in textbooks, the law is presented initially in a qualitative way and at some point during the exposition its mathematical formulation is written on the blackboard…

  3. Towards a more plausible dragon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Efthimiou, Costas

    2014-08-01

    Wizards, mermaids, dragons and aliens. Walking, running, flying and space travel. A hi-tech elevator, a computer, a propulsion engine and a black hole. What do all of these things have in common? This might seem like a really hard brainteaser but the answer is simple: they all obey the fundamental laws of our universe.

  4. Plausibility orderings in dynamic games

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Perea ý Monsuwé, A.

    2014-01-01

    In this paper we explore game-theoretic reasoning in dynamic games within the framework of belief revision theory. More precisely, we focus on the forward induction concept of ‘common strong belief in rationality’ (Battigalli and Siniscalchi (2002) and the backward induction concept of ‘common

  5. Mathematics, structuralism and biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saunders, P T

    1988-01-01

    A new approach is gaining ground in biology, one that has much in common with the structuralist tradition in other fields. It is very much in the spirit of an earlier view of biology and indeed of science in general. It is also, though this is not generally recognized, in the spirit of twentieth century physics. As in modern physics, however, it is not a question of ignoring all the progress that has been made within the former paradigm. On the contrary, the aim is to use it as a basis for setting out in a somewhat different direction. Complex phenomena do not generally lend themselves to reductionist analyses which seek explanation only in terms of detailed mechanisms, but a proper scientific discussion of structure must make full use of what we have already learned - by whatever means - about the processes that underly the phenomena we are trying to understand.

  6. Biologic Therapy and Asthma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viswanathan, Ravi K; Busse, William W

    2018-02-01

    Although airway inflammation is an intrinsic and key feature of asthma, this response varies in its intensity and translation to clinical characteristics and responsiveness to treatment. The observations that clinical heterogeneity is an important aspect of asthma and a feature that likely dictates and determines responses to treatment in severe asthma, patient responsiveness to medication is incomplete, and risks for exacerbation are increased. The development of biologics, which target selected and specific components of inflammation, has been a promising advance to achieve asthma control in patients with severe disease. This article reviews the current biologics available and under development and how their use has affected asthma and which subpopulations appear to benefit the greatest. Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.

  7. A Brief Introduction to Chinese Biological Biological

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    Chinese Biological Abstracts sponsored by the Library, the Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, the Biological Documentation and Information Network, all of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, commenced publication in 1987 and was initiated to provide access to the Chinese information in the field of biology.

  8. The diversification of developmental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crowe, Nathan; Dietrich, Michael R; Alomepe, Beverly S; Antrim, Amelia F; ByrneSim, Bay Lauris; He, Yi

    2015-10-01

    In the 1960s, "developmental biology" became the dominant term to describe some of the research that had previously been included under the rubrics of embryology, growth, morphology, and physiology. As scientific societies formed under this new label, a new discipline took shape. Historians, however, have a number of different perspectives on what changes led to this new field of developmental biology and how the field itself was constituted during this period. Using the General Embryological Information Service, a global index of post-World War II development-related research, we have documented and visualized significant changes in the kinds of research that occurred as this new field formed. In particular, our analysis supports the claim that the transition toward developmental biology was marked by a growth in new topics and forms of research. Although many historians privilege the role of molecular biology and/or the molecularization of biology in general during this formative period, we have found that the influence of molecular biology is not sufficient to account for the wide range of new research that constituted developmental biology at the time. Overall, our work creates a robust characterization of the changes that occurred with regard to research on growth and development in the decades following World War II and provides a context for future work on the specific drivers of those changes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Efeitos de extratos de plantas na biologia de Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith, 1797 (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae mantida em dieta artificial Effects of plant extracts on the biology of Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith, 1797 (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae maintained under artificial diet

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gilberto Pedreira Santiago

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Avaliaram-se os efeitos dos extratos aquosos a 10% de folhas e ramos de arruda (Ruta graveolens L., folhas e ramos de melão-de-são-caetano (Momordica charantia L., folhas do alecrim-pimenta (Lippia sidoides Cham. e fruto verde de mamona (Ricinus communis L., sobre a biologia da lagarta-do-cartucho do milho (Spodoptera frugiperda, mantida em dieta artificial. Os parâmetros avaliados foram duração e viabilidade das fases larval e pupal, peso de pupa, fecundidade, fertilidade e longevidade de adultos. Larvas de S. frugiperda recém-eclodidas foram colocadas em tubos de ensaio com dieta artificial, contendo os extratos de cada material testado. O extrato aquoso do fruto verde de R. communis apresentou bioatividade, nos parâmetros duração larval e pupal e peso de pupa. O extrato aquoso de R. graveolens reduziu o peso de pupa. A dieta contendo extrato de folhas e ramos de M. charantia reduziu a viabilidade larval e o peso de pupa. O extrato aquoso de folhas de L. sidoides não afetou as fases larval e pupal, reduziu a postura e a viabilidade de ovos e aumentou a longevidade de adultos de S. frugiperda. A viabilidade de pupa não foi afetada pelos extratos testados.The effects of aqueous extracts, at 10% concentration of leaves and branches of Ruta graveolens L., leaves and branches of Momordica charantia L., leaves of Lippia sidoides Cham. and green fruits of Ricinus communis L. were evaluated on the biology of fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda maintained under artificial diet. The evaluated parameters were: duration and viability of the larval and pupal phases, pupa weight, fecundity, fertility and longevity of adults. Just-hatched larvae of S. frugiperda was placed in test tube with artificial diet containing extracts of each tested material. The aqueous extract of the green fruits of R. communis presented bioactivity upon duration and weight of larval and pupal phases. The aqueous extract of R. graveolens reduced weight of pupa. The diet

  10. Biological monitoring of radiation exposure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horneck, G.

    1998-11-01

    Complementary to physical dosimetry, biological dosimetry systems have been developed and applied which weight the different components of environmental radiation according to their biological efficacy. They generally give a record of the accumulated exposure of individuals with high sensitivity and specificity for the toxic agent under consideration. Basically three different types of biological detecting/monitoring systems are available: (i) intrinsic biological dosimeters that record the individual radiation exposure (humans, plants, animals) in measurable units. For monitoring ionizing radiation exposure, in situ biomarkers for genetic (e.g. chromosomal aberrations in human lymphocytes, germ line minisatellite mutation rates) or metabolic changes in serum, plasma and blood (e.g. serum lipids, lipoproteins, lipid peroxides, melatonin, antibody titer) have been used. (ii) Extrinsic biological dosimeters/indicators that record the accumulated dose in biological model systems. Their application includes long-term monitoring of changes in environmental UV radiation and its biological implications as well as dosimetry of personal UV exposure. (iii) Biological detectors/biosensors for genotoxic substances and agents such as bacterial assays (e.g. Ames test, SOS-type test) that are highly sensitive to genotoxins with high specificity. They may be applicable for different aspects in environmental monitoring including the International Space Station.

  11. [Cycloferon biological activity characteristics].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utkina, T M; Potekhina, L P; Kartashova, O L; Vasilchenko, A S

    2014-01-01

    Study the effect of cycloferon in experimental and clinical conditions on persistence properties of aurococci as well as features of their morpho-functional reaction by atomic force microscopy. The study was carried out in 12 Staphylococcus aureus clones isolated from mucous membrane of nose anterior part of a resident carrier. The effect of cycloferon in vivo was evaluated in 26 resident staphylococci carriers under the control of anti-carnosine activity of staphylococci. Anti-carnosine activity was determined by O.V. Bukharin et al. (1999), biofilm formation -by G.A. O'Toole et al. (2000). Staphylococci treated with cycloferon were studied by atomic force microscopy in contact mode using scanning probe SMM-2000 microscope. The decrease of persistence properties of staphylococci under the effect of cycloferon in vitro and in vivo may be examined as one of the mechanisms of biological activity of the preparation. A significant increase of S. aureus surface roughness and changes in their morphology under the effect of cycloferon allow stating the disorder of barrier functions in the aurococci cell wall. The data obtained expand the understanding of cycloferon biological activity mechanisms.

  12. Biology of radiation therapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peters, L.J.

    1987-01-01

    A working knowledge of the biologic principles underlying radiotherapy for head and neck tumors is desirable for all the disciplines involved in the management of patients with these cancers. Clinical practice is certainly possible without this basic understanding, and historically most clinical advances have been made empirically. However, an understanding of the basic concepts permits a better appreciation of the strengths and weaknesses of various treatment strategies and offers a rational approach for future modifications of techniques so as to improve the outcome of treatment

  13. Biologically-equivalent dose and long-term survival time in radiation treatments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zaider, Marco; Hanin, Leonid

    2007-01-01

    Within the linear-quadratic model the biologically-effective dose (BED)-taken to represent treatments with an equal tumor control probability (TCP)-is commonly (and plausibly) calculated according to BED(D) = -log[S(D)]/α. We ask whether in the presence of cellular proliferation this claim is justified and examine, as a related question, the extent to which BED approximates an isoeffective dose (IED) defined, more sensibly, in terms of an equal long-term survival probability, rather than TCP. We derive, under the assumption that cellular birth and death rates are time homogeneous, exact equations for the isoeffective dose, IED. As well, we give a rigorous definition of effective long-term survival time, T eff . By using several sets of radiobiological parameters, we illustrate potential differences between BED and IED on the one hand and, on the other, between T eff calculated as suggested here or by an earlier recipe. In summary: (a) the equations currently in use for calculating the effective treatment time may underestimate the isoeffective dose and should be avoided. The same is the case for the tumor control probability (TCP), only more so; (b) for permanent implants BED may be a poor substitute for IED; (c) for a fractionated treatment schedule, interpreting the observed probability of cure in terms of a TCP formalism that refers to the end of the treatment (rather than T eff ) may result in a miscalculation (underestimation) of the initial number of clonogens

  14. More on Grandmother Cells and the Biological Implausibility of PDP Models of Cognition: A Reply to Plaut and McClelland (2010) and Quian Quiroga and Kreiman (2010)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowers, Jeffrey S.

    2010-01-01

    Plaut and McClelland (2010) and Quian Quiroga and Kreiman both challenged my characterization of localist and distributed representations. They also challenged the biological plausibility of grandmother cells on conceptual and empirical grounds. This reply addresses these issues in turn. The premise of my argument is that grandmother cells in…

  15. Probabilistic biological network alignment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todor, Andrei; Dobra, Alin; Kahveci, Tamer

    2013-01-01

    Interactions between molecules are probabilistic events. An interaction may or may not happen with some probability, depending on a variety of factors such as the size, abundance, or proximity of the interacting molecules. In this paper, we consider the problem of aligning two biological networks. Unlike existing methods, we allow one of the two networks to contain probabilistic interactions. Allowing interaction probabilities makes the alignment more biologically relevant at the expense of explosive growth in the number of alternative topologies that may arise from different subsets of interactions that take place. We develop a novel method that efficiently and precisely characterizes this massive search space. We represent the topological similarity between pairs of aligned molecules (i.e., proteins) with the help of random variables and compute their expected values. We validate our method showing that, without sacrificing the running time performance, it can produce novel alignments. Our results also demonstrate that our method identifies biologically meaningful mappings under a comprehensive set of criteria used in the literature as well as the statistical coherence measure that we developed to analyze the statistical significance of the similarity of the functions of the aligned protein pairs.

  16. Will the Convention on Biological Diversity put an end to biological control?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lenteren, van J.C.; Cock, M.J.W.; Brodeur, J.; Barratt, B.I.P.; Bigler, F.; Bolckmans, K.; Haas, F.; Mason, P.G.; Parra, J.R.P.

    2011-01-01

    Will the Convention on Biological Diversity put an end to biological control? Under the Convention on Biological Diversity countries have sovereign rights over their genetic resources. Agreements governing the access to these resources and the sharing of the benefits arising from their use need to

  17. Metabolomics: Definitions and Significance in Systems Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klassen, Aline; Faccio, Andréa Tedesco; Canuto, Gisele André Baptista; da Cruz, Pedro Luis Rocha; Ribeiro, Henrique Caracho; Tavares, Marina Franco Maggi; Sussulini, Alessandra

    2017-01-01

    Nowadays, there is a growing interest in deeply understanding biological mechanisms not only at the molecular level (biological components) but also the effects of an ongoing biological process in the organism as a whole (biological functionality), as established by the concept of systems biology. Within this context, metabolomics is one of the most powerful bioanalytical strategies that allow obtaining a picture of the metabolites of an organism in the course of a biological process, being considered as a phenotyping tool. Briefly, metabolomics approach consists in identifying and determining the set of metabolites (or specific metabolites) in biological samples (tissues, cells, fluids, or organisms) under normal conditions in comparison with altered states promoted by disease, drug treatment, dietary intervention, or environmental modulation. The aim of this chapter is to review the fundamentals and definitions used in the metabolomics field, as well as to emphasize its importance in systems biology and clinical studies.

  18. Inverse problems in systems biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Engl, Heinz W; Lu, James; Müller, Stefan; Flamm, Christoph; Schuster, Peter; Kügler, Philipp

    2009-01-01

    Systems biology is a new discipline built upon the premise that an understanding of how cells and organisms carry out their functions cannot be gained by looking at cellular components in isolation. Instead, consideration of the interplay between the parts of systems is indispensable for analyzing, modeling, and predicting systems' behavior. Studying biological processes under this premise, systems biology combines experimental techniques and computational methods in order to construct predictive models. Both in building and utilizing models of biological systems, inverse problems arise at several occasions, for example, (i) when experimental time series and steady state data are used to construct biochemical reaction networks, (ii) when model parameters are identified that capture underlying mechanisms or (iii) when desired qualitative behavior such as bistability or limit cycle oscillations is engineered by proper choices of parameter combinations. In this paper we review principles of the modeling process in systems biology and illustrate the ill-posedness and regularization of parameter identification problems in that context. Furthermore, we discuss the methodology of qualitative inverse problems and demonstrate how sparsity enforcing regularization allows the determination of key reaction mechanisms underlying the qualitative behavior. (topical review)

  19. Biological effects of radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2013-01-01

    This fourth chapter presents: cell structure and metabolism; radiation interaction with biological tissues; steps of the production of biological effect of radiation; radiosensitivity of tissues; classification of biological effects; reversibility, transmissivity and influence factors; pre-natal biological effects; biological effects in therapy and syndrome of acute irradiation

  20. NASA Biological Specimen Repository

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMonigal, K. A.; Pietrzyk, R. A.; Sams, C. F.; Johnson, M. A.

    2010-01-01

    The NASA Biological Specimen Repository (NBSR) was established in 2006 to collect, process, preserve and distribute spaceflight-related biological specimens from long duration ISS astronauts. This repository provides unique opportunities to study longitudinal changes in human physiology spanning may missions. The NBSR collects blood and urine samples from all participating ISS crewmembers who have provided informed consent. These biological samples are collected once before flight, during flight scheduled on flight days 15, 30, 60, 120 and within 2 weeks of landing. Postflight sessions are conducted 3 and 30 days after landing. The number of in-flight sessions is dependent on the duration of the mission. Specimens are maintained under optimal storage conditions in a manner that will maximize their integrity and viability for future research The repository operates under the authority of the NASA/JSC Committee for the Protection of Human Subjects to support scientific discovery that contributes to our fundamental knowledge in the area of human physiological changes and adaptation to a microgravity environment. The NBSR will institute guidelines for the solicitation, review and sample distribution process through establishment of the NBSR Advisory Board. The Advisory Board will be composed of representatives of all participating space agencies to evaluate each request from investigators for use of the samples. This process will be consistent with ethical principles, protection of crewmember confidentiality, prevailing laws and regulations, intellectual property policies, and consent form language. Operations supporting the NBSR are scheduled to continue until the end of U.S. presence on the ISS. Sample distribution is proposed to begin with selections on investigations beginning in 2017. The availability of the NBSR will contribute to the body of knowledge about the diverse factors of spaceflight on human physiology.

  1. Allometric Scaling in Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banavar, Jayanth

    2009-03-01

    The unity of life is expressed not only in the universal basis of inheritance and energetics at the molecular level, but also in the pervasive scaling of traits with body size at the whole-organism level. More than 75 years ago, Kleiber and Brody and Proctor independently showed that the metabolic rates, B, of mammals and birds scale as the three-quarter power of their mass, M. Subsequent studies showed that most biological rates and times scale as M-1/4 and M^1/4 respectively, and that these so called quarter-power scaling relations hold for a variety of organisms, from unicellular prokaryotes and eukaryotes to trees and mammals. The wide applicability of Kleiber's law, across the 22 orders of magnitude of body mass from minute bacteria to giant whales and sequoias, raises the hope that there is some simple general explanation that underlies the incredible diversity of form and function. We will present a general theoretical framework for understanding the relationship between metabolic rate, B, and body mass, M. We show how the pervasive quarter-power biological scaling relations arise naturally from optimal directed resource supply systems. This framework robustly predicts that: 1) whole organism power and resource supply rate, B, scale as M^3/4; 2) most other rates, such as heart rate and maximal population growth rate scale as M-1/4; 3) most biological times, such as blood circulation time and lifespan, scale as M^1/4; and 4) the average velocity of flow through the network, v, such as the speed of blood and oxygen delivery, scales as M^1/12. Our framework is valid even when there is no underlying network. Our theory is applicable to unicellular organisms as well as to large animals and plants. This work was carried out in collaboration with Amos Maritan along with Jim Brown, John Damuth, Melanie Moses, Andrea Rinaldo, and Geoff West.

  2. Testing of Biologically Inhibiting Surface

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bill Madsen, Thomas; Larsen, Erup

    2003-01-01

    The main purpose of this course is to examine a newly developed biologically inhibiting material with regards to galvanic corrosion and electrochemical properties. More in detail, the concern was how the material would react when exposed to cleaning agents, here under CIP cleaning (Cleaning...

  3. Life's Biological Chemistry: A Destiny or Destination Starting from Prebiotic Chemistry?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishnamurthy, Ramanarayanan

    2018-06-05

    Research into understanding the origins -and evolution- of life has long been dominated by the concept of taking clues from extant biology and extrapolating its molecules and pathways backwards in time. This approach has also guided the search for solutions to the problem of how contemporary biomolecules would have arisen directly from prebiotic chemistry on early earth. However, the continuing difficulties in finding universally convincing solutions in connecting prebiotic chemistry to biological chemistry should give us pause, and prompt us to rethink this concept of treating extant life's chemical processes as the sole end goal and, therefore, focusing only -and implicitly- on the respective extant chemical building blocks. Rather, it may be worthwhile "to set aside the goal" and begin with what would have been plausible prebiotic reaction mixtures (which may have no obvious or direct connection to life's chemical building blocks and processes) - and allow their chemistries and interactions, under different geochemical constraints, to guide and illuminate as to what processes and systems can emerge. Such a conceptual approach gives rise to the prospect that chemistry of life-as-we-know-it is not the only result (not a "destiny"), but one that has emerged among many potential possibilities (a "destination"). This postulate, in turn, could impact the way we think about chemical signatures and criteria used in the search for alternative and extraterrestrial "life". As a bonus, we may discover the chemistries and pathways naturally that led to the emergence of life as we know it. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  4. The metaphysical lessons of synthetic biology and neuroscience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baertschi, Bernard

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, I examine some important metaphysical lessons that are often presented as derived from two new scientific disciplines: synthetic biology and neuroscience. I analyse four of them: the nature of life, the existence of a soul (the mind-body problem), personhood, and free will. Many caveats are in order, and each 'advance' or each case should be assessed for itself. I conclude that a main lesson can nevertheless be learned: in conjunction with modern science, neuroscience and synthetic biology allow us to enrich old metaphysical debates, to deepen and even renew them. In particular, it becomes less and less plausible to consider life, mind, person, and agency as non-natural or non-physical entities. Copyright © 2015 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  5. The role of biological fertility in predicting family size

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Joffe, M; Key, J; Best, N

    2009-01-01

    for the first child. CONCLUSIONS: Within the limits of the available data quality, family size appears to be predicted by biological fertility, even after adjustment for maternal age, if the woman was at least 20 years old when the couple's first attempt at conception started. The contribution of behavioural......BACKGROUND: It is plausible that a couple's ability to achieve the desired number of children is limited by biological fertility, especially if childbearing is postponed. Family size has declined and semen quality may have deteriorated in much of Europe, although studies have found an increase....... Potential confounders were maternal age when unprotected sex began prior to the first birth, and maternal smoking. Desired family size was available in only one of the datasets. RESULTS: Couples with a TTP of at least 12 months tended to have smaller families, with odds ratios for the risk of not having...

  6. Network Reconstruction of Dynamic Biological Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Asadi, Behrang

    2013-01-01

    Inference of network topology from experimental data is a central endeavor in biology, since knowledge of the underlying signaling mechanisms a requirement for understanding biological phenomena. As one of the most important tools in bioinformatics area, development of methods to reconstruct biological networks has attracted remarkable attention in the current decade. Integration of different data types can lead to remarkable improvements in our ability to identify the connectivity of differe...

  7. Quantification of biologically effective environmental UV irradiance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horneck, G.

    To determine the impact of environmental UV radiation on human health and ecosystems demands monitoring systems that weight the spectral irradiance according to the biological responses under consideration. In general, there are three different approaches to quantify a biologically effective solar irradiance: (i) weighted spectroradiometry where the biologically weighted radiometric quantities are derived from spectral data by multiplication with an action spectrum of a relevant photobiological reaction, e.g. erythema, DNA damage, skin cancer, reduced productivity of terrestrial plants and aquatic foodweb; (ii) wavelength integrating chemical-based or physical dosimetric systems with spectral sensitivities similar to a biological response curve; and (iii) biological dosimeters that directly weight the incident UV components of sunlight in relation to the effectiveness of the different wavelengths and to interactions between them. Most biological dosimeters, such as bacteria, bacteriophages, or biomolecules, are based on the UV sensitivity of DNA. If precisely characterized, biological dosimeters are applicable as field and personal dosimeters.

  8. Dyneins: structure, biology and disease

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    King, Stephen M

    2012-01-01

    .... From bench to bedside, Dynein: Structure, Biology and Disease offers research on fundamental cellular processes to researchers and clinicians across developmental biology, cell biology, molecular biology, biophysics, biomedicine...

  9. Biological conversion system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, C.D.

    A system for bioconversion of organic material comprises a primary bioreactor column wherein a biological active agent (zymomonas mobilis) converts the organic material (sugar) to a product (alcohol), a rejuvenator column wherein the biological activity of said biological active agent is enhanced, and means for circulating said biological active agent between said primary bioreactor column and said rejuvenator column.

  10. Translational environmental biology: cell biology informing conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Traylor-Knowles, Nikki; Palumbi, Stephen R

    2014-05-01

    Typically, findings from cell biology have been beneficial for preventing human disease. However, translational applications from cell biology can also be applied to conservation efforts, such as protecting coral reefs. Recent efforts to understand the cell biological mechanisms maintaining coral health such as innate immunity and acclimatization have prompted new developments in conservation. Similar to biomedicine, we urge that future efforts should focus on better frameworks for biomarker development to protect coral reefs. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Systems biology approach to bioremediation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chakraborty, Romy; Wu, Cindy H.; Hazen, Terry C.

    2012-06-01

    Bioremediation has historically been approached as a ‘black box’ in terms of our fundamental understanding. Thus it succeeds and fails, seldom without a complete understanding of why. Systems biology is an integrated research approach to study complex biological systems, by investigating interactions and networks at the molecular, cellular, community, and ecosystem level. The knowledge of these interactions within individual components is fundamental to understanding the dynamics of the ecosystem under investigation. Finally, understanding and modeling functional microbial community structure and stress responses in environments at all levels have tremendous implications for our fundamental understanding of hydrobiogeochemical processes and the potential for making bioremediation breakthroughs and illuminating the ‘black box’.

  12. Plant Vascular Biology 2010

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ding, Biao

    2014-11-17

    This grant supported the Second International Conference on Plant Vascular Biology (PVB 2010) held July 24-28, 2010 on the campus of Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio. Biao Ding (Ohio State University; OSU) and David Hannapel (Iowa State University; ISU) served as co-chairs of this conference. Biao Ding served as the local organizer. PVB is defined broadly here to include studies on the biogenesis, structure and function of transport systems in plants, under conditions of normal plant growth and development as well as of plant interactions with pathogens. The transport systems cover broadly the xylem, phloem, plasmodesmata and vascular cell membranes. The PVB concept has emerged in recent years to emphasize the integrative nature of the transport systems and approaches to investigate them.

  13. Computational Systems Chemical Biology

    OpenAIRE

    Oprea, Tudor I.; May, Elebeoba E.; Leitão, Andrei; Tropsha, Alexander

    2011-01-01

    There is a critical need for improving the level of chemistry awareness in systems biology. The data and information related to modulation of genes and proteins by small molecules continue to accumulate at the same time as simulation tools in systems biology and whole body physiologically-based pharmacokinetics (PBPK) continue to evolve. We called this emerging area at the interface between chemical biology and systems biology systems chemical biology, SCB (Oprea et al., 2007).

  14. Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — CBER is the Center within FDA that regulates biological products for human use under applicable federal laws, including the Public Health Service Act and the Federal...

  15. Report on achievements in fiscal 1999 on research and development of the technology to create biological bonding substances utilizing particulates under the industrial and scientific technology research and development theme [university collaborated type]. Research and development of the technology to create biological bonding substances utilizing particulates; 1999 nendo biryushi riyogata seitai ketsugo busshitsu nado sosei gijutsu no kenkyu kaihatsu seika hokokusho

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2000-03-01

    This paper describes the achievements in fiscal 1999 on development of the technology to create biological bonding substances utilizing particulates. In fixing ligands onto particulates, it is necessary that various compounds be fixed with their receptor bonding specificity maintained. Therefore, carboxylic acid, thiol and bromoacetyl groups were introduced into the particulates. Capping them by using methoxyacetyl was found capable of suppressing non-specific adsorption. Opioid compounds were synthesized for their fixation onto particulates for selection and separation. Carrying particulate bonding precursors in latex beads was realized. Synthesis will continue on opiod compounds in which amide groups are introduced into different positions to provide the particulate carrying ligands with diversity. Biological receptors for different compounds were obtained and refined by using compound fixing particulates. Refinement and acquisition were possible on FK506 bonded protein in a short time from cell extraction liquid by using the fixing particulates for the FK506 bonded protein. The paper also describes analysis of bonded domains, and position-specific fixation of the biological receptors. (NEDO)

  16. Models for synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaznessis, Yiannis N

    2007-11-06

    Synthetic biological engineering is emerging from biology as a distinct discipline based on quantification. The technologies propelling synthetic biology are not new, nor is the concept of designing novel biological molecules. What is new is the emphasis on system behavior. The objective is the design and construction of new biological devices and systems to deliver useful applications. Numerous synthetic gene circuits have been created in the past decade, including bistable switches, oscillators, and logic gates, and possible applications abound, including biofuels, detectors for biochemical and chemical weapons, disease diagnosis, and gene therapies. More than fifty years after the discovery of the molecular structure of DNA, molecular biology is mature enough for real quantification that is useful for biological engineering applications, similar to the revolution in modeling in chemistry in the 1950s. With the excitement that synthetic biology is generating, the engineering and biological science communities appear remarkably willing to cross disciplinary boundaries toward a common goal.

  17. Dissipative structures and biological rhythms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldbeter, Albert

    2017-10-01

    Sustained oscillations abound in biological systems. They occur at all levels of biological organization over a wide range of periods, from a fraction of a second to years, and with a variety of underlying mechanisms. They control major physiological functions, and their dysfunction is associated with a variety of physiological disorders. The goal of this review is (i) to give an overview of the main rhythms observed at the cellular and supracellular levels, (ii) to briefly describe how the study of biological rhythms unfolded in the course of time, in parallel with studies on chemical oscillations, (iii) to present the major roles of biological rhythms in the control of physiological functions, and (iv) the pathologies associated with the alteration, disappearance, or spurious occurrence of biological rhythms. Two tables present the main examples of cellular and supracellular rhythms ordered according to their period, and their role in physiology and pathophysiology. Among the rhythms discussed are neural and cardiac rhythms, metabolic oscillations such as those occurring in glycolysis in yeast, intracellular Ca++ oscillations, cyclic AMP oscillations in Dictyostelium amoebae, the segmentation clock that controls somitogenesis, pulsatile hormone secretion, circadian rhythms which occur in all eukaryotes and some bacteria with a period close to 24 h, the oscillatory dynamics of the enzymatic network driving the cell cycle, and oscillations in transcription factors such as NF-ΚB and tumor suppressors such as p53. Ilya Prigogine's concept of dissipative structures applies to temporal oscillations and allows us to unify within a common framework the various rhythms observed at different levels of biological organization, regardless of their period and underlying mechanism.

  18. A systems biology pipeline identifies new immune and disease related molecular signatures and networks in human cells during microgravity exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mukhopadhyay, Sayak; Saha, Rohini; Palanisamy, Anbarasi; Ghosh, Madhurima; Biswas, Anupriya; Roy, Saheli; Pal, Arijit; Sarkar, Kathakali; Bagh, Sangram

    2016-05-17

    Microgravity is a prominent health hazard for astronauts, yet we understand little about its effect at the molecular systems level. In this study, we have integrated a set of systems-biology tools and databases and have analysed more than 8000 molecular pathways on published global gene expression datasets of human cells in microgravity. Hundreds of new pathways have been identified with statistical confidence for each dataset and despite the difference in cell types and experiments, around 100 of the new pathways are appeared common across the datasets. They are related to reduced inflammation, autoimmunity, diabetes and asthma. We have identified downregulation of NfκB pathway via Notch1 signalling as new pathway for reduced immunity in microgravity. Induction of few cancer types including liver cancer and leukaemia and increased drug response to cancer in microgravity are also found. Increase in olfactory signal transduction is also identified. Genes, based on their expression pattern, are clustered and mathematically stable clusters are identified. The network mapping of genes within a cluster indicates the plausible functional connections in microgravity. This pipeline gives a new systems level picture of human cells under microgravity, generates testable hypothesis and may help estimating risk and developing medicine for space missions.

  19. A systems biology pipeline identifies new immune and disease related molecular signatures and networks in human cells during microgravity exposure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mukhopadhyay, Sayak; Saha, Rohini; Palanisamy, Anbarasi; Ghosh, Madhurima; Biswas, Anupriya; Roy, Saheli; Pal, Arijit; Sarkar, Kathakali; Bagh, Sangram

    2016-05-01

    Microgravity is a prominent health hazard for astronauts, yet we understand little about its effect at the molecular systems level. In this study, we have integrated a set of systems-biology tools and databases and have analysed more than 8000 molecular pathways on published global gene expression datasets of human cells in microgravity. Hundreds of new pathways have been identified with statistical confidence for each dataset and despite the difference in cell types and experiments, around 100 of the new pathways are appeared common across the datasets. They are related to reduced inflammation, autoimmunity, diabetes and asthma. We have identified downregulation of NfκB pathway via Notch1 signalling as new pathway for reduced immunity in microgravity. Induction of few cancer types including liver cancer and leukaemia and increased drug response to cancer in microgravity are also found. Increase in olfactory signal transduction is also identified. Genes, based on their expression pattern, are clustered and mathematically stable clusters are identified. The network mapping of genes within a cluster indicates the plausible functional connections in microgravity. This pipeline gives a new systems level picture of human cells under microgravity, generates testable hypothesis and may help estimating risk and developing medicine for space missions.

  20. Fluctuating Thermodynamics for Biological Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ham, Sihyun

    Because biomolecular processes are largely under thermodynamic control, dynamic extension of thermodynamics is necessary to uncover the mechanisms and driving factors of fluctuating processes. The fluctuating thermodynamics technology presented in this talk offers a practical means for the thermodynamic characterization of conformational dynamics in biomolecules. The use of fluctuating thermodynamics has the potential to provide a comprehensive picture of fluctuating phenomena in diverse biological processes. Through the application of fluctuating thermodynamics, we provide a thermodynamic perspective on the misfolding and aggregation of the various proteins associated with human diseases. In this talk, I will present the detailed concepts and applications of the fluctuating thermodynamics technology for elucidating biological processes. This work was supported by Samsung Science and Technology Foundation under Project Number SSTF-BA1401-13.

  1. Systems Biology of the Fluxome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel A. Aon

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The advent of high throughput -omics has made the accumulation of comprehensive data sets possible, consisting of changes in genes, transcripts, proteins and metabolites. Systems biology-inspired computational methods for translating metabolomics data into fluxomics provide a direct functional, dynamic readout of metabolic networks. When combined with appropriate experimental design, these methods deliver insightful knowledge about cellular function under diverse conditions. The use of computational models accounting for detailed kinetics and regulatory mechanisms allow us to unravel the control and regulatory properties of the fluxome under steady and time-dependent behaviors. This approach extends the analysis of complex systems from description to prediction, including control of complex dynamic behavior ranging from biological rhythms to catastrophic lethal arrhythmias. The powerful quantitative metabolomics-fluxomics approach will help our ability to engineer unicellular and multicellular organisms evolve from trial-and-error to a more predictable process, and from cells to organ and organisms.

  2. Biology of Blood

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... switch to the Professional version Home Blood Disorders Biology of Blood Overview of Blood Resources In This ... Version. DOCTORS: Click here for the Professional Version Biology of Blood Overview of Blood Components of Blood ...

  3. Biological basis of detoxication

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Caldwell, John; Jakoby, William B

    1983-01-01

    This volume considers that premise that most of the major patterns of biological conversion of foreign compounds are known and may have predictive value in assessing the biological course for novel compounds...

  4. Molecular Biology and Prevention of Endometrial Cancer. Addendum

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Maxwell, George L

    2008-01-01

    Objective: To increase our understanding of the molecular aberrations associated with endometrial carcinogenesis and the biologic mechanisms underlying the protective effect of oral contraceptive (OC) therapy. Methods: 1...

  5. Fusion of biological membranes

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Pramana – Journal of Physics; Volume 64; Issue 6. Fusion of biological membranes. K Katsov M Müller M Schick. Invited Talks:- Topic 11. Biologically motivated problems (protein-folding models, dynamics at the scale of the cell; biological networks, evolution models, etc.) Volume 64 Issue 6 June 2005 pp ...

  6. Biology Myth-Killers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lampert, Evan

    2014-01-01

    "Biology Myth-Killers" is an activity designed to identify and correct common misconceptions for high school and college introductory biology courses. Students identify common myths, which double as biology misconceptions, and use appropriate sources to share the "truth" about the myths. This learner-centered activity is a fun…

  7. Designing synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agapakis, Christina M

    2014-03-21

    Synthetic biology is frequently defined as the application of engineering design principles to biology. Such principles are intended to streamline the practice of biological engineering, to shorten the time required to design, build, and test synthetic gene networks. This streamlining of iterative design cycles can facilitate the future construction of biological systems for a range of applications in the production of fuels, foods, materials, and medicines. The promise of these potential applications as well as the emphasis on design has prompted critical reflection on synthetic biology from design theorists and practicing designers from many fields, who can bring valuable perspectives to the discipline. While interdisciplinary connections between biologists and engineers have built synthetic biology via the science and the technology of biology, interdisciplinary collaboration with artists, designers, and social theorists can provide insight on the connections between technology and society. Such collaborations can open up new avenues and new principles for research and design, as well as shed new light on the challenging context-dependence-both biological and social-that face living technologies at many scales. This review is inspired by the session titled "Design and Synthetic Biology: Connecting People and Technology" at Synthetic Biology 6.0 and covers a range of literature on design practice in synthetic biology and beyond. Critical engagement with how design is used to shape the discipline opens up new possibilities for how we might design the future of synthetic biology.

  8. Radiation biology. Chapter 20

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wondergem, J. [International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna (Austria)

    2014-09-15

    Radiation biology (radiobiology) is the study of the action of ionizing radiations on living matter. This chapter gives an overview of the biological effects of ionizing radiation and discusses the physical, chemical and biological variables that affect dose response at the cellular, tissue and whole body levels at doses and dose rates relevant to diagnostic radiology.

  9. General Biology Syllabus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunter, Scott; Watthews, Thomas

    This syllabus has been developed as an alternative to Regents biology and is intended for the average student who could benefit from an introductory biology course. It is divided into seven major units dealing with, respectively: (1) similarities among living things; (2) human biology (focusing on nutrition, transport, respiration, excretion, and…

  10. Upgrading Undergraduate Biology Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Musante, Susan

    2011-01-01

    On many campuses throughout the country, undergraduate biology education is in serious need of an upgrade. During the past few decades, the body of biological knowledge has grown exponentially, and as a research endeavor, the practice of biology has evolved. Education research has also made great strides, revealing many new insights into how…

  11. Chemistry and Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wigston, David L.

    1970-01-01

    Discusses the relationship between chemisty and biology in the science curriculum. Points out the differences in perception of the disciplines, which the physical scientists favoring reductionism. Suggests that biology departments offer a special course for chemistry students, just as the chemistry departments have done for biology students.…

  12. The quantitative description of radiation-unduced cell inactivation. 9. Some remarks on the relative biological effect of ionizing radiation upon reproductive death of diploid and polyploid cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barsukov, V.S.; Malinovskij, O.V.

    1978-01-01

    A model of repproductive death of cells is suggested and tested on the basis of data on relative biological efficiency (RBE) with provision for microdosimetry approaches. The model considers irradiation of cells with charged particles under conditions of linear energy transfers (LET) to the cell nucleus by a particle. This energy is subject to great fluctuations, and irradiation of a cell should be characterized not by the absorbed dose but rather by its stochastic analogue - specific energy. It appears then that RBE should be determined from the specific energy-response relationshjp rather than from dose-response relationship. The followjng main results were obtained: experimental relationship between the yield of sublesions, one-track and two-track lethals and LET correspond to that expected from the literature data; under the conditions considered, RBE can be determined from absorbed dose-pesponse dependency; RBE for sublesions, one- and two-track lethals taken separatly does not depend on the radiation dose and the relationshjp between the resulting RBE and the response is governed by redistribution of contributions of one- and two-track lethals at different doses. The plausibility of the model suggested is thus confirmed

  13. Synthetic Biology: Putting Synthesis into Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Jing; Luo, Yunzi; Zhao, Huimin

    2010-01-01

    The ability to manipulate living organisms is at the heart of a range of emerging technologies that serve to address important and current problems in environment, energy, and health. However, with all its complexity and interconnectivity, biology has for many years been recalcitrant to engineering manipulations. The recent advances in synthesis, analysis, and modeling methods have finally provided the tools necessary to manipulate living systems in meaningful ways, and have led to the coining of a field named synthetic biology. The scope of synthetic biology is as complicated as life itself – encompassing many branches of science, and across many scales of application. New DNA synthesis and assembly techniques have made routine the customization of very large DNA molecules. This in turn has allowed the incorporation of multiple genes and pathways. By coupling these with techniques that allow for the modeling and design of protein functions, scientists have now gained the tools to create completely novel biological machineries. Even the ultimate biological machinery – a self-replicating organism – is being pursued at this moment. It is the purpose of this review to dissect and organize these various components of synthetic biology into a coherent picture. PMID:21064036

  14. On the analysis of glycomics mass spectrometry data via the regularized area under the ROC curve

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lebrilla Carlito B

    2007-12-01

    . The simulation proved asymptotic properties that estimated AUC approaches the true AUC. Finally, mass spectrometry data of serum glycan for ovarian cancer diagnosis was analyzed. The optimal combination based on TGDR-AUC algorithm yields plausible result and the detected biomarkers are confirmed based on biological evidence. Conclusion The TGDR-AUC algorithm relaxes the normality and independence assumptions from previous literatures. In addition to its flexibility and easy interpretability, the algorithm yields good performance in combining potential biomarkers and is computationally feasible. Thus, the approach of TGDR-AUC is a plausible algorithm to classify disease status on the basis of multiple biomarkers.

  15. Synthetic biological networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Archer, Eric; Süel, Gürol M

    2013-01-01

    Despite their obvious relationship and overlap, the field of physics is blessed with many insightful laws, while such laws are sadly absent in biology. Here we aim to discuss how the rise of a more recent field known as synthetic biology may allow us to more directly test hypotheses regarding the possible design principles of natural biological networks and systems. In particular, this review focuses on synthetic gene regulatory networks engineered to perform specific functions or exhibit particular dynamic behaviors. Advances in synthetic biology may set the stage to uncover the relationship of potential biological principles to those developed in physics. (review article)

  16. Quantum biological information theory

    CERN Document Server

    Djordjevic, Ivan B

    2016-01-01

    This book is a self-contained, tutorial-based introduction to quantum information theory and quantum biology. It serves as a single-source reference to the topic for researchers in bioengineering, communications engineering, electrical engineering, applied mathematics, biology, computer science, and physics. The book provides all the essential principles of the quantum biological information theory required to describe the quantum information transfer from DNA to proteins, the sources of genetic noise and genetic errors as well as their effects. Integrates quantum information and quantum biology concepts; Assumes only knowledge of basic concepts of vector algebra at undergraduate level; Provides a thorough introduction to basic concepts of quantum information processing, quantum information theory, and quantum biology; Includes in-depth discussion of the quantum biological channel modelling, quantum biological channel capacity calculation, quantum models of aging, quantum models of evolution, quantum models o...

  17. At the biological modeling and simulation frontier.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, C Anthony; Ropella, Glen E P; Lam, Tai Ning; Tang, Jonathan; Kim, Sean H J; Engelberg, Jesse A; Sheikh-Bahaei, Shahab

    2009-11-01

    We provide a rationale for and describe examples of synthetic modeling and simulation (M&S) of biological systems. We explain how synthetic methods are distinct from familiar inductive methods. Synthetic M&S is a means to better understand the mechanisms that generate normal and disease-related phenomena observed in research, and how compounds of interest interact with them to alter phenomena. An objective is to build better, working hypotheses of plausible mechanisms. A synthetic model is an extant hypothesis: execution produces an observable mechanism and phenomena. Mobile objects representing compounds carry information enabling components to distinguish between them and react accordingly when different compounds are studied simultaneously. We argue that the familiar inductive approaches contribute to the general inefficiencies being experienced by pharmaceutical R&D, and that use of synthetic approaches accelerates and improves R&D decision-making and thus the drug development process. A reason is that synthetic models encourage and facilitate abductive scientific reasoning, a primary means of knowledge creation and creative cognition. When synthetic models are executed, we observe different aspects of knowledge in action from different perspectives. These models can be tuned to reflect differences in experimental conditions and individuals, making translational research more concrete while moving us closer to personalized medicine.

  18. Systems Biology: Impressions from a Newcomer Graduate Student in 2016

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpson, Melanie Rae

    2016-01-01

    As a newcomer, the philosophical basis of systems biology seems intuitive and appealing, the underlying philosophy being that the whole of a living system cannot be completely understood by the study of its individual parts. Yet answers to the questions "What is systems biology?" and "What constitutes a systems biology approach in…

  19. Biological control agents elevate hantavirus by subsidizing deer mouse populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dean E. Pearson; Ragan M. Callaway

    2006-01-01

    Biological control of exotic invasive plants using exotic insects is practiced under the assumption that biological control agents are safe if they do not directly attack non-target species. We tested this assumption by evaluating the potential for two host-specific biological control agents (Urophora spp.), widely established in North America for spotted...

  20. Recyclable Keggin Heteropolyacids as an Environmentally Benign Catalyst for the Synthesis of New 2-Benzoylamino-N-phenyl-benzamide Derivatives under Microwave Irradiations at Solvent-Free Conditions and the Evaluation of Biological Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ighilahriz-Boubchir, Karima; Boutemeur-Kheddis, Baya; Rabia, Cherifa; Makhloufi-Chebli, Malika; Hamdi, Maamar; Silva, Artur M S

    2017-12-21

    2-Benzoylamino- N -phenyl-benzamide derivatives ( 5a - h ) were prepared from 2-phenyl-3,1-(4 H )-benzoxazin-4-one 3 and substituted anilines 4a - h in the presence of a Keggin-type heteropolyacids series (H₃PW 12 O 40 ·13H₂O; H₄SiW 12 O 40 ·13H₂O; H₄SiMo 12 O 40 ·13H₂O; and H₃PMo 12 O 40 ·13H₂O) as catalysts without solvent and under microwave irradiation. We found that the use of H₃PW 12 O 40 ·13H₂O acid coupled to microwave irradiation allowed obtaining a high-yielding reaction with a short time. The compound structures were established by ¹H-NMR and 13 C-NMR. The antibacterial and antifungal activities of the synthesized compounds exhibited an inhibition of the growth of bacteria and fungi.

  1. Standard biological parts knowledgebase.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michal Galdzicki

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available We have created the Knowledgebase of Standard Biological Parts (SBPkb as a publically accessible Semantic Web resource for synthetic biology (sbolstandard.org. The SBPkb allows researchers to query and retrieve standard biological parts for research and use in synthetic biology. Its initial version includes all of the information about parts stored in the Registry of Standard Biological Parts (partsregistry.org. SBPkb transforms this information so that it is computable, using our semantic framework for synthetic biology parts. This framework, known as SBOL-semantic, was built as part of the Synthetic Biology Open Language (SBOL, a project of the Synthetic Biology Data Exchange Group. SBOL-semantic represents commonly used synthetic biology entities, and its purpose is to improve the distribution and exchange of descriptions of biological parts. In this paper, we describe the data, our methods for transformation to SBPkb, and finally, we demonstrate the value of our knowledgebase with a set of sample queries. We use RDF technology and SPARQL queries to retrieve candidate "promoter" parts that are known to be both negatively and positively regulated. This method provides new web based data access to perform searches for parts that are not currently possible.

  2. Standard Biological Parts Knowledgebase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galdzicki, Michal; Rodriguez, Cesar; Chandran, Deepak; Sauro, Herbert M.; Gennari, John H.

    2011-01-01

    We have created the Knowledgebase of Standard Biological Parts (SBPkb) as a publically accessible Semantic Web resource for synthetic biology (sbolstandard.org). The SBPkb allows researchers to query and retrieve standard biological parts for research and use in synthetic biology. Its initial version includes all of the information about parts stored in the Registry of Standard Biological Parts (partsregistry.org). SBPkb transforms this information so that it is computable, using our semantic framework for synthetic biology parts. This framework, known as SBOL-semantic, was built as part of the Synthetic Biology Open Language (SBOL), a project of the Synthetic Biology Data Exchange Group. SBOL-semantic represents commonly used synthetic biology entities, and its purpose is to improve the distribution and exchange of descriptions of biological parts. In this paper, we describe the data, our methods for transformation to SBPkb, and finally, we demonstrate the value of our knowledgebase with a set of sample queries. We use RDF technology and SPARQL queries to retrieve candidate “promoter” parts that are known to be both negatively and positively regulated. This method provides new web based data access to perform searches for parts that are not currently possible. PMID:21390321

  3. Standard biological parts knowledgebase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galdzicki, Michal; Rodriguez, Cesar; Chandran, Deepak; Sauro, Herbert M; Gennari, John H

    2011-02-24

    We have created the Knowledgebase of Standard Biological Parts (SBPkb) as a publically accessible Semantic Web resource for synthetic biology (sbolstandard.org). The SBPkb allows researchers to query and retrieve standard biological parts for research and use in synthetic biology. Its initial version includes all of the information about parts stored in the Registry of Standard Biological Parts (partsregistry.org). SBPkb transforms this information so that it is computable, using our semantic framework for synthetic biology parts. This framework, known as SBOL-semantic, was built as part of the Synthetic Biology Open Language (SBOL), a project of the Synthetic Biology Data Exchange Group. SBOL-semantic represents commonly used synthetic biology entities, and its purpose is to improve the distribution and exchange of descriptions of biological parts. In this paper, we describe the data, our methods for transformation to SBPkb, and finally, we demonstrate the value of our knowledgebase with a set of sample queries. We use RDF technology and SPARQL queries to retrieve candidate "promoter" parts that are known to be both negatively and positively regulated. This method provides new web based data access to perform searches for parts that are not currently possible.

  4. Características biológicas de Boophilus microplus (acari: ixodidae a partir de infestação experimental em cão Biological characteristics of Boophilus microplus (acari: ixodidae on dog under experimental infestation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcos P. Franque

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Boophilus microplus (Canestrini, 1887, um parasita comum dos bovinos, tem sido observado em cães. Com objetivo de descrever características biológicas desse parasitismo, um cão foi infestado experimentalmente com 10.000 larvas de B. microplus previamente mantidas em câmara climatizada a 27 ± 1 ºC e umidade relativa superior a 80%. A média da fase parasitária foi de 24,4 ± 1,50 dias, com uma taxa de recuperação de 0,42%. Das 21 fêmeas desprendidas natural e precocemente do hospedeiro, 6 (28% ingurgitaram o suficiente (75,1 ± 30,23mg para realizar postura. O período médio de prépostura foi de 4,33 ± 1,37 dias e o período médio de postura de 9,17 ± 2,32 dias, com produção média de 18,78 ± 15,34mg de postura. O índice médio de produção de ovos observado foi de 22,38%. Estes resultados demonstraram que fêmeas de B. microplus alimentadas em cão experimentalmente infestado, completam seu ciclo biológico. A obtenção de fêmeas, capazes de realizar posturas viáveis, sugerem a possibilidade do cão atuar como hospedeiro alternativo para B. microplus, especialmente quando não há disponível outra espécie de hospedeiro preferencial.Boophilus microplus, a common parasite of cattle, has eventually reported in dogs. To describe biological features of this parasitism, one dog was experimentally infested with 10,000 larvae of B. microplus which were previously held in acclimatized camera at 27 ±1ºC and relative humidity up to 80%. The mean of parasitic phase was 24.4 ± 1.50 days, with 0.42% of recovery rate. Of 21 natural detached B. microplus females, six engorged enough (75.1 ± 30.23mg to achieve posture. The mean period of pre-posture was 4.33 ± 1.37 days and the means period of posture was 9.17 ± 2.32, producing a mean of 18.78 ± 15.34 posture weight. The mean of eggs production index observed was 22.38%. The results showed that B. microplus females fed on dogs to complete their life cycle. The females collected

  5. Biological control of ticks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samish, M.; Ginsberg, H.; Glazer, I.; Bowman, A.S.; Nuttall, P.

    2004-01-01

    Ticks have numerous natural enemies, but only a few species have been evaluated as tick biocontrol agents (BCAs). Some laboratory results suggest that several bacteria are pathogenic to ticks, but their mode of action and their potential value as biocontrol agents remain to be determined. The most promising entomopathogenic fungi appear to be Metarhizium anisopliae and Beauveria bassiana, strains of which are already commercially available for the control of some pests. Development of effective formulations is critical for tick management. Entomopathogenic nematodes that are pathogenic to ticks can potentially control ticks, but improved formulations and selection of novel nematode strains are needed. Parasitoid wasps of the genus Ixodiphagus do not typically control ticks under natural conditions, but inundative releases show potential value. Most predators of ticks are generalists, with a limited potential for tick management (one possible exception is oxpeckers in Africa). Biological control is likely to play a substantial role in future IPM programmes for ticks because of the diversity of taxa that show high potential as tick BCAs. Considerable research is required to select appropriate strains, develop them as BCAs, establish their effectiveness, and devise production strategies to bring them to practical use.

  6. Biological oscillations for learning walking coordination: dynamic recurrent neural network functionally models physiological central pattern generator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoellinger, Thomas; Petieau, Mathieu; Duvinage, Matthieu; Castermans, Thierry; Seetharaman, Karthik; Cebolla, Ana-Maria; Bengoetxea, Ana; Ivanenko, Yuri; Dan, Bernard; Cheron, Guy

    2013-01-01

    The existence of dedicated neuronal modules such as those organized in the cerebral cortex, thalamus, basal ganglia, cerebellum, or spinal cord raises the question of how these functional modules are coordinated for appropriate motor behavior. Study of human locomotion offers an interesting field for addressing this central question. The coordination of the elevation of the 3 leg segments under a planar covariation rule (Borghese et al., 1996) was recently modeled (Barliya et al., 2009) by phase-adjusted simple oscillators shedding new light on the understanding of the central pattern generator (CPG) processing relevant oscillation signals. We describe the use of a dynamic recurrent neural network (DRNN) mimicking the natural oscillatory behavior of human locomotion for reproducing the planar covariation rule in both legs at different walking speeds. Neural network learning was based on sinusoid signals integrating frequency and amplitude features of the first three harmonics of the sagittal elevation angles of the thigh, shank, and foot of each lower limb. We verified the biological plausibility of the neural networks. Best results were obtained with oscillations extracted from the first three harmonics in comparison to oscillations outside the harmonic frequency peaks. Physiological replication steadily increased with the number of neuronal units from 1 to 80, where similarity index reached 0.99. Analysis of synaptic weighting showed that the proportion of inhibitory connections consistently increased with the number of neuronal units in the DRNN. This emerging property in the artificial neural networks resonates with recent advances in neurophysiology of inhibitory neurons that are involved in central nervous system oscillatory activities. The main message of this study is that this type of DRNN may offer a useful model of physiological central pattern generator for gaining insights in basic research and developing clinical applications.

  7. Recyclable Keggin Heteropolyacids as an Environmentally Benign Catalyst for the Synthesis of New 2-Benzoylamino-N-phenyl-benzamide Derivatives under Microwave Irradiations at Solvent-Free Conditions and the Evaluation of Biological Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karima Ighilahriz-Boubchir

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available 2-Benzoylamino-N-phenyl-benzamide derivatives (5a–h were prepared from 2-phenyl-3,1-(4H-benzoxazin-4-one 3 and substituted anilines 4a–h in the presence of a Keggin-type heteropolyacids series (H3PW12O40·13H2O; H4SiW12O40·13H2O; H4SiMo12O40·13H2O; and H3PMo12O40·13H2O as catalysts without solvent and under microwave irradiation. We found that the use of H3PW12O40·13H2O acid coupled to microwave irradiation allowed obtaining a high-yielding reaction with a short time. The compound structures were established by 1H-NMR and 13C-NMR. The antibacterial and antifungal activities of the synthesized compounds exhibited an inhibition of the growth of bacteria and fungi.

  8. Plant synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Wusheng; Stewart, C Neal

    2015-05-01

    Plant synthetic biology is an emerging field that combines engineering principles with plant biology toward the design and production of new devices. This emerging field should play an important role in future agriculture for traditional crop improvement, but also in enabling novel bioproduction in plants. In this review we discuss the design cycles of synthetic biology as well as key engineering principles, genetic parts, and computational tools that can be utilized in plant synthetic biology. Some pioneering examples are offered as a demonstration of how synthetic biology can be used to modify plants for specific purposes. These include synthetic sensors, synthetic metabolic pathways, and synthetic genomes. We also speculate about the future of synthetic biology of plants. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Branching processes in biology

    CERN Document Server

    Kimmel, Marek

    2015-01-01

    This book provides a theoretical background of branching processes and discusses their biological applications. Branching processes are a well-developed and powerful set of tools in the field of applied probability. The range of applications considered includes molecular biology, cellular biology, human evolution and medicine. The branching processes discussed include Galton-Watson, Markov, Bellman-Harris, Multitype, and General Processes. As an aid to understanding specific examples, two introductory chapters, and two glossaries are included that provide background material in mathematics and in biology. The book will be of interest to scientists who work in quantitative modeling of biological systems, particularly probabilists, mathematical biologists, biostatisticians, cell biologists, molecular biologists, and bioinformaticians. The authors are a mathematician and cell biologist who have collaborated for more than a decade in the field of branching processes in biology for this new edition. This second ex...

  10. Is partial behaviour a plausible explanation for the unavailability of the ICMJE disclosure form of an author in a BMJ journal?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klaas van Dijk

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available This case study about the ethical behaviour in the field of scholarly publishing documents an exception on the rule for research articles in the medical journal BMJ Open that ICMJE disclosure forms of authors must be made available on request. The ICMJE, the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, has developed these forms for the disclosure of conflicts of interest for authors of medical publications. The case refers to the form of the corresponding author of an article in BMJ Open on retraction notices (Moylan and Kowalczuk, 2016. The corresponding author is a member of the council of COPE, the Committee on Publication Ethics. I will argue that the unavailability of the form relates to personal conflicts of interest with the corresponding author about my efforts to retract a fatally flawed study on the breeding biology of the Basra Reed Warbler Acrocephalus griseldis. I describe my attempts to get the form and I will argue that its unavailability can be attributed to partial behaviour by BMJ, the publisher of BMJ Open. This study complements other sources reporting ethical issues at COPE.

  11. Biological detector and method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sillerud, Laurel; Alam, Todd M; McDowell, Andrew F

    2013-02-26

    A biological detector includes a conduit for receiving a fluid containing one or more magnetic nanoparticle-labeled, biological objects to be detected and one or more permanent magnets or electromagnet for establishing a low magnetic field in which the conduit is disposed. A microcoil is disposed proximate the conduit for energization at a frequency that permits detection by NMR spectroscopy of whether the one or more magnetically-labeled biological objects is/are present in the fluid.

  12. Space Synthetic Biology (SSB)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This project focused on employing advanced biological engineering and bioelectrochemical reactor systems to increase life support loop closure and in situ resource...

  13. Biological Water Quality Criteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page contains links to Technical Documents pertaining to Biological Water Quality Criteria, including, technical assistance documents for states, tribes and territories, program overviews, and case studies.

  14. Synthetic Biology and the Moral Significance of Artificial Life: A Reply to Douglas, Powell and Savulescu.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christiansen, Andreas

    2016-06-01

    I discuss the moral significance of artificial life within synthetic biology via a discussion of Douglas, Powell and Savulescu's paper 'Is the creation of artificial life morally significant'. I argue that the definitions of 'artificial life' and of 'moral significance' are too narrow. Douglas, Powell and Savulescu's definition of artificial life does not capture all core projects of synthetic biology or the ethical concerns that have been voiced, and their definition of moral significance fails to take into account the possibility that creating artificial life is conditionally acceptable. Finally, I show how several important objections to synthetic biology are plausibly understood as arguing that creating artificial life in a wide sense is only conditionally acceptable. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. The United States and biological warfare: secrets from the early cold war and Korea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruwer, A

    2001-01-01

    The United States and Biological Warfare is about accusations that the United States resorted to bacteriological warfare at a time of great military stress during the Korean War. In December 1951, the then US Secretary of Defense ordered early readiness for offensive use of biological weapons. Soon afterwards, the North Korean and Chinese armies accused the United States of starting a large-scale biological warfare experiment in Korea. The US State Department denied the accusation. Both parties to the dispute maintain their positions today. The authors spent 20 years researching the accusations in North America, Europe and Japan. They were the first foreigners to be given access to Chinese classified documents. The reader is also introduced to the concept of 'plausible denial', an official US policy which allowed responsible governmental representatives to deny knowledge of certain events. The authors hope that their work will contribute to the understanding of a time when modern war expanded into a new type of violence.

  16. The Tipping Point: Biological Terrorism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott Cary

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available This article presents a strategic, operational, and tactical analysis of information currently available on the state of bio-weapons development by non-state actors, primarily Islamist jihadists. It discusses the evidence supporting a practical assessment that non-state actors have begun to acquire, and in the near-term intend to employ, bio-weapons. A pathogen and method of attack specifically designed to achieve the strategic goals of jihadists are presented as functional examples of the problem of the emerging global bio-weapons threat.Is a terrorist attack utilizing biological weapons a real threat? If so, is there a way to predict the circumstances under which it might happen or how it might be conducted? This article explores what is known and cannot be known about these questions, and will examine the threat of biological terrorism in the context of the strategic goals, operational methods, and tactical intentions of Islamist terrorists.

  17. Biological Action Spectra (invited paper)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gruijl, F.R. de

    2000-01-01

    Ultraviolet (UV) radiation induces a wide variety of biological responses: ranging in humans from well-known short-term effects like sunburn to long-term effects like skin cancer. The wavelength dependencies ('action spectra') of the responses can differ significantly, depending on the UV-targeted molecules (their absorption spectra), their localisation (transmission to the target depth) and the photochemical reactions involved (e.g. quantum yields, competing reaction). An action spectrum (e.g. of sunburn) is usually determined in a wavelength by wavelength analysis of the response. This is not always possible (e.g. in case of skin cancer), and an action spectrum may then be extracted mathematically from differences in responses to broadband UV sources of various spectral compositions (yielding 'biological spectral weights'). However, relative spectral weights may shift with exposure levels and contributions from different wavelengths may not always add up. Under these circumstances conventional analyses will yield different action spectra for different experimental conditions. (author)

  18. Biological signals classification and analysis

    CERN Document Server

    Kiasaleh, Kamran

    2015-01-01

    This authored monograph presents key aspects of signal processing analysis in the biomedical arena. Unlike wireless communication systems, biological entities produce signals with underlying nonlinear, chaotic nature that elude classification using the standard signal processing techniques, which have been developed over the past several decades for dealing primarily with standard communication systems. This book separates what is random from that which appears to be random, and yet is truly deterministic with random appearance. At its core, this work gives the reader a perspective on biomedical signals and the means to classify and process such signals. In particular, a review of random processes along with means to assess the behavior of random signals is also provided. The book also includes a general discussion of biological signals in order to demonstrate the inefficacy of the well-known techniques to correctly extract meaningful information from such signals. Finally, a thorough discussion of recently ...

  19. Consistent robustness analysis (CRA) identifies biologically relevant properties of regulatory network models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saithong, Treenut; Painter, Kevin J; Millar, Andrew J

    2010-12-16

    A number of studies have previously demonstrated that "goodness of fit" is insufficient in reliably classifying the credibility of a biological model. Robustness and/or sensitivity analysis is commonly employed as a secondary method for evaluating the suitability of a particular model. The results of such analyses invariably depend on the particular parameter set tested, yet many parameter values for biological models are uncertain. Here, we propose a novel robustness analysis that aims to determine the "common robustness" of the model with multiple, biologically plausible parameter sets, rather than the local robustness for a particular parameter set. Our method is applied to two published models of the Arabidopsis circadian clock (the one-loop [1] and two-loop [2] models). The results reinforce current findings suggesting the greater reliability of the two-loop model and pinpoint the crucial role of TOC1 in the circadian network. Consistent Robustness Analysis can indicate both the relative plausibility of different models and also the critical components and processes controlling each model.

  20. Influence of biological, experiential and psychological factors in wine preference segmentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pickering, Gary J; Hayes, John E

    2017-06-01

    We sought to determine the influence of selected biological, experiential and psychological variables on self-reported liking and consumption of wine in a sample of 329 Ontario wine consumers. Cluster analysis revealed three distinct groups, representing plausible market segments: wine lovers; dry table wine likers/sweet dislikers; and sweet wine likers/fortified dislikers. These groups differ in level of wine expertise, wine adventurousness, alcohol intake, bitterness from 6- n -propylthiouracil (PROP), and several demographic variables. PROP hypo-tasters ( n =113) and PROP hyper-tasters ( n =112) differed in liking scores for nine of the 11 wine styles [ANCOVA, P (F)branding and marketing strategies.

  1. Workshop Introduction: Systems Biology and Biological Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    As we consider the future of toxicity testing, the importance of applying biological models to this problem is clear. Modeling efforts exist along a continuum with respect to the level of organization (e.g. cell, tissue, organism) linked to the resolution of the model. Generally,...

  2. Synthetic biology and biosecurity: challenging the "myths".

    OpenAIRE

    Jefferson, C; Lentzos, F; Marris, C

    2014-01-01

    15.10.14 KB. Ok to add published version to spiral, OA paper under cc by Synthetic biology, a field that aims to make biology easier to engineer, is routinely described as leading to an increase in the dual-use threat, i.e., the potential for the same scientific research to be used for peaceful purposes or misused for warfare or terrorism. Fears have been expressed that the de-skilling of biology, combined with online access to the genomic DNA sequences of pathogenic organisms an...

  3. Biological effects of electromagnetic fields

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gabriel, C.

    1996-01-01

    The effects of electromagnetic (em) fields on biological systems were first observed and exploited well over a century ago. Concern over the possible health hazards of human exposure to such fields developed much later. It is now well known that excessive exposure to em fields may have in undesirable biological consequences. Standards were introduced to determine what constitute an excessive exposure and how to avoid it. Current concern over the issue of hazards stems mainly from recent epidemiological studies of exposed populations and also from the results of laboratory experiments in which whole animals are exposed in vivo or tissue and cell cultures exposed in vitro to low levels of irradiation. The underlying fear is the possibility of a causal relationship between chronic exposure to low field levels and some forms of cancer. So far the evidence does not add up to a firm statement on the matter. At present it is not known how and at what level, if at all, can these exposure be harmful to human health. This state of affair does not provide a basis for incorporating the outcome of such research in exposure standards. This paper will give a brief overview of the research in this field and how it is evaluated for the purpose of producing scientifically based standards. The emphasis will be on the physical, biophysical and biological mechanisms implicated in the interaction between em fields and biological systems. Understanding such mechanisms leads not only to a more accurate evaluation of their health implications but also to their optimal utilization, under controlled conditions, in biomedical applications. (author)

  4. External costs of electricity production under scrutiny

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wagner, H.J.; Melchert, A.

    1993-01-01

    After a short introduction into the problems and questions surrounding the issue of external costs Chapter 2 presents the most important results of the studies under review and analysis in this work. Occasionally, minor discrepancies were found between the results given in the summary of a study and the data reported in the relevant chapters. Chapter 3 identifies and discusses differences in perspective between the studies under consideration. Chapter 4 analyses the most important premises and parameters adopted in the studies for the calculation of overall costs and net benefits of the different modes of electricity production. This serves to probe the reliability of the data, plausibility of the premises, and nature of the presupposed relationships. Chapter 5 examines the relationships of time assumed in the studies and gives a first comment on the more advanced Prognos study. Chapter 6, finally, offers a summarizing evaluation. (orig./UA) [de

  5. Augmented telomerase activity, reduced telomere length and the presence of alternative lengthening of telomere in renal cell carcinoma: plausible predictive and diagnostic markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pal, Deeksha; Sharma, Ujjawal; Khajuria, Ragini; Singh, Shrawan Kumar; Kakkar, Nandita; Prasad, Rajendra

    2015-05-15

    In this study, we analyzed 100 cases of renal cell carcinoma (RCC) for telomerase activity, telomere length and alternative lengthening of telomeres (ALT) using the TRAP assay, TeloTTAGGG assay kit and immunohistochemical analysis of ALT associated promyelocytic leukemia (PML) bodies respectively. A significantly higher (P=0.000) telomerase activity was observed in 81 cases of RCC which was correlated with clinicopathological features of tumor for instance, stage (P=0.008) and grades (P=0.000) but not with the subtypes of RCC (P = 0.355). Notwithstanding, no correlation was found between telomerase activity and subtypes of RCC. Strikingly, the telomere length was found to be significantly shorter in RCC (P=0.000) to that of corresponding normal renal tissues and it is well correlated with grades (P=0.016) but not with stages (P=0.202) and subtypes (P=0.669) of RCC. In this study, telomere length was also negatively correlated with the age of patients (r(2)=0.528; P=0.000) which supports the notion that it could be used as a marker for biological aging. ALT associated PML bodies containing PML protein was found in telomerase negative cases of RCC. It suggests the presence of an ALT pathway mechanism to maintain the telomere length in telomerase negative RCC tissues which was associated with high stages of RCC, suggesting a prevalent mechanism for telomere maintenance in high stages. In conclusion, the telomerase activity and telomere length can be used as a diagnostic as well as a predictive marker in RCC. The prevalence of ALT mechanism in high stages of RCC is warranted for the development of anti-ALT inhibitors along with telomerase inhibitor against RCC as a therapeutic approach. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Molecular profiles to biology and pathways: a systems biology approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Laere, Steven; Dirix, Luc; Vermeulen, Peter

    2016-06-16

    Interpreting molecular profiles in a biological context requires specialized analysis strategies. Initially, lists of relevant genes were screened to identify enriched concepts associated with pathways or specific molecular processes. However, the shortcoming of interpreting gene lists by using predefined sets of genes has resulted in the development of novel methods that heavily rely on network-based concepts. These algorithms have the advantage that they allow a more holistic view of the signaling properties of the condition under study as well as that they are suitable for integrating different data types like gene expression, gene mutation, and even histological parameters.

  7. Plausible exploitation of Jatropha de-oiled seed cake for lipase and phytase production and simultaneous detoxification by Candida parapsilosis isolated from poultry garbage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kannoju, Balakrishna; Ganapathiwar, Swaruparani; Nunavath, Hanumalal; Sunkar, Bindu; Bhukya, Bhima

    2017-02-01

    Jatropha de-oiled seed cake was explored to utilize as a basic nutrient source for Candida parapsilosis, isolated from poultry garbage and selected based on the production of lipase and phytase enzymes under submerged fermentation. At optimized parameters under solid-state fermentation, lipase and phytase activities were recorded as 1056.66±2.92 and 833±2.5U/g of substrate (U/g), respectively. Besides enzyme production, complete elimination of phorbol esters and significant phytate reduction from 6.51±0.01 to 0.43±0.01g/100g of seed cake were noted after 3days incubation. Curcin and trypsin inhibition activity were reduced significantly from 26.33±0.43 to 0.56±0.02mg/100g and 229.33±2.02 to 11.66±0.28U/g, respectively after 5days incubation. Saponins were reduced from 5.56±0.19 to 1.95±0.01g/100g of seed cake after 7days incubation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Synthetic Biology: Mapping the Scientific Landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oldham, Paul; Hall, Stephen; Burton, Geoff

    2012-01-01

    This article uses data from Thomson Reuters Web of Science to map and analyse the scientific landscape for synthetic biology. The article draws on recent advances in data visualisation and analytics with the aim of informing upcoming international policy debates on the governance of synthetic biology by the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity. We use mapping techniques to identify how synthetic biology can best be understood and the range of institutions, researchers and funding agencies involved. Debates under the Convention are likely to focus on a possible moratorium on the field release of synthetic organisms, cells or genomes. Based on the empirical evidence we propose that guidance could be provided to funding agencies to respect the letter and spirit of the Convention on Biological Diversity in making research investments. Building on the recommendations of the United States Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues we demonstrate that it is possible to promote independent and transparent monitoring of developments in synthetic biology using modern information tools. In particular, public and policy understanding and engagement with synthetic biology can be enhanced through the use of online interactive tools. As a step forward in this process we make existing data on the scientific literature on synthetic biology available in an online interactive workbook so that researchers, policy makers and civil society can explore the data and draw conclusions for themselves. PMID:22539946

  9. Advances in radiation biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lett, J.T.; Ehmann, U.K.; Cox, A.B.

    1987-01-01

    The classical period of radiation biology is coming to a close. Such change always occurs at a time when the ideas and concepts that promoted the burgeoning of an infant science are no longer adequate. This volume covers a number of areas in which new ideas and research are playing a vital role, including cellular radiation sensitivity, radioactive waste disposal, and space radiation biology

  10. Physics and biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frauenfelder, H.

    1988-01-01

    The author points out that the coupling between physics and biology is becoming closer as time goes on. He tries to show that physical studies on biological systems not only yield insight into biology but also provide results of interest to physics. Biological systems are extremly complex system. Ideally one would like to understand the behavior of such systems in terms of the behavior of its constituent atoms. Since in small organisms this may be 10 20 atoms, it is clear these are not simple many-body systems. He reviews the basic elements of cells and then considers the broader questions of structure, complexity, and function, which must be looked at on levels from the cell to the organism. Despite the vast amount of observational material already in existence, biophysics and biological physics are only at a beginning. We can expect that physics will continue to interact strongly with biology. Actually, the connection also includes chemistry and mathematics. New tools that become available in physics will continue to be applied to biological problems. We can expect that the flow of information will not be one way; biological systems will provide new information on many old and new parts of physics, from reaction theory and transport phenomena to complexity, cooperativity, and nonlinear processes

  11. Psoriasis : implications of biologics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lecluse, L.L.A.

    2010-01-01

    Since the end of 2004 several specific immunomodulating therapies: ‘biologic response modifiers’ or ‘biologics’ have been registered for moderate to severe psoriasis in Europe. This thesis is considering the implications of the introduction of the biologics for psoriasis patients, focusing on safety

  12. Biological Clocks & Circadian Rhythms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Laura; Jones, M. Gail

    2009-01-01

    The study of biological clocks and circadian rhythms is an excellent way to address the inquiry strand in the National Science Education Standards (NSES) (NRC 1996). Students can study these everyday phenomena by designing experiments, gathering and analyzing data, and generating new experiments. As students explore biological clocks and circadian…

  13. Tropical Freshwater Biology

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Tropical Freshwater Biology promotes the publication of scientific contributions in the field of freshwater biology in the tropical and subtropical regions of the world. One issue is published annually but this number may be increased. Original research papers and short communications on any aspect of tropical freshwater ...

  14. Multiscale Biological Materials

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frølich, Simon

    of multiscale biological systems have been investigated and new research methods for automated Rietveld refinement and diffraction scattering computed tomography developed. The composite nature of biological materials was investigated at the atomic scale by looking at the consequences of interactions between...

  15. Integrated Biological Control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    JOHNSON, A.R.

    2002-01-01

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

  16. Frontiers in mathematical biology

    CERN Document Server

    1994-01-01

    Volume 100, which is the final volume of the LNBM series serves to commemorate the acievements in two decades of this influential collection of books in mathematical biology. The contributions, by the leading mathematical biologists, survey the state of the art in the subject, and offer speculative, philosophical and critical analyses of the key issues confronting the field. The papers address fundamental issues in cell and molecular biology, organismal biology, evolutionary biology, population ecology, community and ecosystem ecology, and applied biology, plus the explicit and implicit mathematical challenges. Cross-cuttting issues involve the problem of variation among units in nonlinear systems, and the related problems of the interactions among phenomena across scales of space, time and organizational complexity.

  17. Biological sample collector

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Gloria A [French Camp, CA

    2010-09-07

    A biological sample collector is adapted to a collect several biological samples in a plurality of filter wells. A biological sample collector may comprise a manifold plate for mounting a filter plate thereon, the filter plate having a plurality of filter wells therein; a hollow slider for engaging and positioning a tube that slides therethrough; and a slide case within which the hollow slider travels to allow the tube to be aligned with a selected filter well of the plurality of filter wells, wherein when the tube is aligned with the selected filter well, the tube is pushed through the hollow slider and into the selected filter well to sealingly engage the selected filter well and to allow the tube to deposit a biological sample onto a filter in the bottom of the selected filter well. The biological sample collector may be portable.

  18. Space biology research development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonting, Sjoerd L.

    1993-01-01

    The purpose of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Institute is to conduct and promote research related activities regarding the search for extraterrestrial life, particularly intelligent life. Such research encompasses the broad discipline of 'Life in the Universe', including all scientific and technological aspects of astronomy and the planetary sciences, chemical evolution, the origin of life, biological evolution, and cultural evolution. The primary purpose was to provide funding for the Principal Investigator to collaborate with the personnel of the SETI Institute and the NASA-Ames Research center in order to plan and develop space biology research on and in connection with Space Station Freedom; to promote cooperation with the international partners in the space station; to conduct a study on the use of biosensors in space biology research and life support system operation; and to promote space biology research through the initiation of an annual publication 'Advances in Space Biology and Medicine'.

  19. Structural and electronic properties of barbituric acid and melamine-containing ribonucleosides as plausible components of prebiotic RNA: implications for prebiotic self-assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaur, Sarabjeet; Sharma, Purshotam; Wetmore, Stacey D

    2017-11-22

    The RNA world hypothesis assumes that RNA was the first informational polymer that originated from prebiotic chemical soup. However, since the reaction of d-ribose with canonical nucleobases (A, C, G and U) fails to yield ribonucleosides (rNs) in substantial amounts, the spontaneous origin of rNs and the subsequent synthesis of RNA remains an unsolved mystery. To this end, it has been suggested that RNA may have evolved from primitive genetic material (preRNA) composed of simpler prebiotic heterocycles that spontaneously form glycosidic bonds with ribose. As an effort toward evaluating this hypothesis, the present study uses density functional theory (DFT) to assess the suitability of barbituric acid (BA) and melamine (MM) to act as prebiotic nucleobases, both of which have recently been shown to spontaneously form a glycosidic bond with ribose and organize into supramolecular assemblies in solution. The significant strength of hydrogen bonds involving BA and MM indicates that such interactions may have played a crucial role in their preferential selection over competing heterocycles that interact solely through stacking interactions from the primordial soup during the early phase of evolution. However, the greater stability of stacked dimers involving BA or MM and the canonical nucleobases compared to those consisting solely of BA and/or MM points towards the possible evolution of intermediate informational polymers consisting of prebiotic and canonical nucleobases, which could have eventually evolved into RNA. Analysis of the associated rNs reveals an anti conformational preference for the biologically-relevant β-anomer of both BA and MM rNs, which will allow complementary WC-like hydrogen bonding that can stabilize preRNA polymers. Large calculated deglycosylation barriers suggest BA rNs containing C-C glycosidic bonds are relevant in challenging prebiotic environments such as volcanic geotherms, while lower barriers indicate the MM rNs containing C

  20. Pembangunan Kebun Biologi Wamena*[establishment of Wamena Biological Gardens

    OpenAIRE

    Rahmansyah, M; Latupapua, HJD

    2003-01-01

    The richness of biological resources (biodiversity) in mountainous area of Papua is an asset that has to be preserved.Exploitation of natural resources often cause damage on those biological assets and as genetic resources.Care has to be taken to overcome the situation of biological degradation, and alternate steps had been shaped on ex-situ biological conservation. Wamena Biological Gardens, as an ex-situ biological conservation, has been established to keep the high mountain biological and ...

  1. Anthropic principle in biology and radiation biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akif'ev, A. P.; Degtyarev, S.V.

    1999-01-01

    It was suggested to add the anthropic principle of the Universe according to which the physical constants of fundamental particles of matter and the laws of their counteraction are those that an appearance of man and mind becomes possible and necessary, with some biological constants to the set of fundamental constants. With reparation of DNA as an example it was shown how a cell ran some parameters of Watson-Crick double helix. It was pointed that the concept of the anthropic principle of the Universe in its full body including biological constants was a key to developing of a unified theory of evolution of the Universe within the limits of scientific creationism [ru

  2. Synthetic biology of microbes synthesizing polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guo-Qiang Chen

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Microbial polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA have been produced as bioplastics for various purposes. Under the support of China National Basic Research 973 Project, we developed synthetic biology methods to diversify the PHA structures into homo-, random, block polymers with improved properties to better meet various application requirements. At the same time, various pathways were assembled to produce various PHA from glucose as a simple carbon source. At the end, Halomonas bacteria were reconstructed to produce PHA in changing morphology for low cost production under unsterile and continuous conditions. The synthetic biology will advance the PHA into a bio- and material industry.

  3. Mammalian Synthetic Biology: Engineering Biological Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Black, Joshua B; Perez-Pinera, Pablo; Gersbach, Charles A

    2017-06-21

    The programming of new functions into mammalian cells has tremendous application in research and medicine. Continued improvements in the capacity to sequence and synthesize DNA have rapidly increased our understanding of mechanisms of gene function and regulation on a genome-wide scale and have expanded the set of genetic components available for programming cell biology. The invention of new research tools, including targetable DNA-binding systems such as CRISPR/Cas9 and sensor-actuator devices that can recognize and respond to diverse chemical, mechanical, and optical inputs, has enabled precise control of complex cellular behaviors at unprecedented spatial and temporal resolution. These tools have been critical for the expansion of synthetic biology techniques from prokaryotic and lower eukaryotic hosts to mammalian systems. Recent progress in the development of genome and epigenome editing tools and in the engineering of designer cells with programmable genetic circuits is expanding approaches to prevent, diagnose, and treat disease and to establish personalized theranostic strategies for next-generation medicines. This review summarizes the development of these enabling technologies and their application to transforming mammalian synthetic biology into a distinct field in research and medicine.

  4. Managing biological diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samson, Fred B.; Knopf, Fritz L.

    1993-01-01

    Biological diversity is the variety of life and accompanying ecological processes (Off. Technol. Assess. 1987, Wilcove and Samson 1987, Keystone 1991). Conservation of biological diversity is a major environmental issue (Wilson 1988, Counc. Environ. Quality 1991). The health and future of the earth's ecological systems (Lubchenco et al. 1991), global climate change (Botkin 1990), and an ever-increasing rate in loss of species, communities, and ecological systems (Myers 1990) are among issues drawing biological diversity to the mainstream of conservation worldwide (Int. Union Conserv. Nat. and Nat. Resour. [IUCN] et al. 1991). The legal mandate for conserving biological diversity is now in place (Carlson 1988, Doremus 1991). More than 19 federal laws govern the use of biological resources in the United States (Rein 1991). The proposed National Biological Diversity Conservation and Environmental Research Act (H.R. 585 and S.58) notes the need for a national biological diversity policy, would create a national center for biological diversity research, and recommends a federal interagency strategy for ecosystem conservation. There are, however, hard choices ahead for the conservation of biological diversity, and biologists are grappling with how to set priorities in research and management (Roberts 1988). We sense disillusion among field biologists and managers relative to how to operationally approach the seemingly overwhelming charge of conserving biological diversity. Biologists also need to respond to critics like Hunt (1991) who suggest a tree farm has more biological diversity than an equal area of old-growth forest. At present, science has played only a minor role in the conservation of biological diversity (Weston 1992) with no unified approach available to evaluate strategies and programs that address the quality and quantity of biological diversity (Murphy 1990, Erwin 1992). Although actions to conserve biological diversity need to be clearly defined by

  5. A timeless biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tozzi, Arturo; Peters, James F; Chafin, Clifford; De Falco, Domenico; Torday, John S

    2018-05-01

    Contrary to claims that physics is timeless while biology is time-dependent, we take the opposite standpoint: physical systems' dynamics are constrained by the arrow of time, while living assemblies are time-independent. Indeed, the concepts of "constraints" and "displacements" shed new light on the role of continuous time flow in life evolution, allowing us to sketch a physical gauge theory for biological systems in long timescales. In the very short timescales of biological systems' individual lives, time looks like "frozen" and "fixed", so that the second law of thermodynamics is momentarily wrecked. The global symmetries (standing for biological constrained trajectories, i.e. the energetic gradient flows dictated by the second law of thermodynamics in long timescales) are broken by local "displacements" where time is held constant, i.e., modifications occurring in living systems. Such displacements stand for brief local forces, able to temporarily "break" the cosmic increase in entropy. The force able to restore the symmetries (called "gauge field") stands for the very long timescales of biological evolution. Therefore, at the very low speeds of life evolution, time is no longer one of the four phase space coordinates of a spacetime Universe: it becomes just a gauge field superimposed to three-dimensional biological systems. We discuss the implications in biology: when assessing living beings, the underrated role of isolated "spatial" modifications needs to be emphasized, living apart the evolutionary role of time. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Neutron in biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Niimura, Nobuo [Japan Atomic Energy Research Inst., Tokai, Ibaraki (Japan). Tokai Research Establishment

    1997-11-01

    Neutron in biology can provide an experimental method of directly locating relationship of proteins and DNA. However, there are relatively few experimental study of such objects since it takes a lot of time to collect a sufficient number of Bragg reflections and inelastic spectra due to the low flux of neutron illuminating the sample. Since a next generation neutron source of JAERI will be 5MW spallation neutron source and its effective neutron flux will be 10{sup 2} to 10{sup 3} times higher than the one of JRR-3M, neutron in biology will open a completely new world for structural biology. (author)

  7. Neutron in biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Niimura, Nobuo

    1997-01-01

    Neutron in biology can provide an experimental method of directly locating relationship of proteins and DNA. However, there are relatively few experimental study of such objects since it takes a lot of time to collect a sufficient number of Bragg reflections and inelastic spectra due to the low flux of neutron illuminating the sample. Since a next generation neutron source of JAERI will be 5MW spallation neutron source and its effective neutron flux will be 10 2 to 10 3 times higher than the one of JRR-3M, neutron in biology will open a completely new world for structural biology. (author)

  8. The plausibility of maternal nutritional status being a contributing factor to the risk for fetal alcohol spectrum disorders: the potential influence of zinc status as an example.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keen, Carl L; Uriu-Adams, Janet Y; Skalny, Anatoly; Grabeklis, Andrei; Grabeklis, Sevil; Green, Kerri; Yevtushok, Lyubov; Wertelecki, Wladimir W; Chambers, Christina D

    2010-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that human pregnancy outcome can be significantly compromised by suboptimal maternal nutritional status. Poor diet results in a maternal-fetal environment in which the teratogenicity of other insults such as alcohol might be amplified. As an example, there is evidence that zinc (Zn) can interact with maternal alcohol exposure to influence the risk for fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD). Studies with experimental animals have shown that the teratogenicity of alcohol is increased under conditions of Zn deficiency, whereas its teratogenicity is lessened when animals are given Zn-supplemented diets or Zn injections before the alcohol exposure. Alcohol can precipitate an acute-phase response, resulting in a subsequent increase in maternal liver metallothionein, which can sequester Zn and lead to decreased Zn transfer to the fetus. Importantly, the teratogenicity of acute alcohol exposure is reduced in metallothionein knockout mice, which can have improved Zn transfer to the conceptus relative to wild-type mice. Consistent with the above, Zn status has been reported to be low in alcoholic women at delivery. Preliminary data from two basic science and clinical nutritional studies that are ongoing as part of the international Collaborative Initiative on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders support the potential role of Zn, among other nutritional factors, relative to risk for FASD. Importantly, the nutrient levels being examined in these studies are relevant to general clinical populations and represent suboptimal levels rather than severe deficiencies. These data suggest that moderate deficiencies in single nutrients can act as permissive factors for FASD, and that adequate nutritional status or intervention through supplementation may provide protection from some of the adverse effects of prenatal alcohol exposure.

  9. A Theoretical Investigation of the Plausibility of Reactions Between Ammonia and Carbonyl Species (Formaldehyde, Acetaldehyde, and Acetone) in Interstellar Ice Analogs at Ultracold Temperatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Lina; Woon, David E.

    2011-01-01

    We have reexamined the reaction between formaldehyde and ammonia, which was previously studied by us and other workers in modestly sized cluster calculations. Larger model systems with up to 12H2O were employed, and reactions of two more carbonyl species, acetaldehyde and acetone, were also carried out. Calculations were performed at the B3LYP/6-31+G** level with bulk solvent effects treated with a polarizable continuum model; limited MP2/6-31+G** calculations were also performed. We found that while the barrier for the concerted proton relay mechanism described in previous work remains modest, it is still prohibitively high for the reaction to occur under the ultracold conditions that prevail in dense interstellar clouds. However, a new pathway emerged in more realistic clusters that involves at least one barrierless step for two of the carbonyl species considered here: ammonia reacts with formaldehyde and acetaldehyde to form a partial charge transfer species in small clusters (4H2O) and a protonated hydroxyamino intermediate species in large clusters (9H2O, 12H2O); modest barriers that decrease sharply with cluster size are found for the analogous processes for the acetone-NH3 reaction. Furthermore, if a second ammonia replaces one of the water molecules in calculations in the 9H2O clusters, deprotonation can occur to yield the same neutral hydroxyamino species that is formed via the original concerted proton relay mechanism. In at least one position, deprotonation is barrierless when zero-point energy is included. In addition to describing the structures and energetics of the reactions between formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, and acetone with ammonia, we report spectroscopic predictions of the observable vibrational features that are expected to be present in ice mixtures of different composition.

  10. Biological factors underlying regularity and chaos in aquatic ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Unknown

    We demonstrate that reaction–diffusion mathematical models are an appropriate tool for searching and ..... action model (Malchow 1993, 1994) that was originally ... can appear if phytoplankton and zooplankton move with ..... We want to men-.

  11. Biology, Genetics, and Environment: Underlying Factors Influencing Alcohol Metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wall, Tamara L; Luczak, Susan E; Hiller-Sturmhöfel, Susanne

    2016-01-01

    Gene variants encoding several of the alcohol-metabolizing enzymes, alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) and aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH), are among the largest genetic associations with risk for alcohol dependence. Certain genetic variants (i.e., alleles)--particularly the ADH1B*2, ADH1B*3, ADH1C*1, and ALDH2*2 alleles--have been associated with lower rates of alcohol dependence. These alleles may lead to an accumulation of acetaldehyde during alcohol metabolism, which can result in heightened subjective and objective effects. The prevalence of these alleles differs among ethnic groups; ADH1B*2 is found frequently in northeast Asians and occasionally Caucasians, ADH1B*3 is found predominantly in people of African ancestry, ADH1C*1 varies substantially across populations, and ALDH2*2 is found almost exclusively in northeast Asians. Differences in the prevalence of these alleles may account at least in part for ethnic differences in alcohol consumption and alcohol use disorder (AUD). However, these alleles do not act in isolation to influence the risk of AUD. For example, the gene effects of ALDH2*2 and ADH1B*2 seem to interact. Moreover, other factors have been found to influence the extent to which these alleles affect a person's alcohol involvement, including developmental stage, individual characteristics (e.g., ethnicity, antisocial behavior, and behavioral undercontrol), and environmental factors (e.g., culture, religion, family environment, and childhood adversity).

  12. Biological effects under combined action of radiation and chemical factors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Malenchenko, A.F.

    1990-01-01

    The paper considers the manifoild factors of environmental pollution effect upon living organisms and their possible response manifested in additivity, synergism and anthogonism. Consideration is also given to the possible practical measures for improving ecological situation and decreasing the risk of anthropogenesis negative after-effects

  13. Biological alterations of rat podocytes cultured under basolateral hydrostatic pressure

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Coers, W.; Vos, J. T.; Huitema, S.; Dijk, F.; Weening, J. J.

    1996-01-01

    In vivo, glomerular visceral epithelial cells (GVEC), or podocytes, are morphologically highly differentiated cells which are in close contact with adjacent cells by complex interdigitating foot processes. In vitro, the dedifferentiated appearance of podocytes hampers investigations on podocyte

  14. Mechanical Biological Treatment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bilitewski, B-; Oros, Christiane; Christensen, Thomas Højlund

    2011-01-01

    The basic processes and technologies of composting and anaerobic digestion, as described in the previous chapters, are usually used for specific or source-separated organic waste flows. However, in the 1990s mechanical biological waste treatment technologies (MBT) were developed for unsorted...... or residual waste (after some recyclables removed at the source). The concept was originally to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill, but MBT technologies are today also seen as plants recovering fuel as well as material fractions. As the name suggests the technology combines mechanical treatment...... technologies (screens, sieves, magnets, etc.) with biological technologies (composting, anaerobic digestion). Two main technologies are available: Mechanical biological pretreatment (MBP), which first removes an RDF fraction and then biologically treats the remaining waste before most of it is landfilled...

  15. Nutritional Systems Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kasper

    and network biology has the potential to increase our understanding of how small molecules affect metabolic pathways and homeostasis, how this perturbation changes at the disease state, and to what extent individual genotypes contribute to this. A fruitful strategy in approaching and exploring the field...... biology research. The paper also shows as a proof-of-concept that a systems biology approach to diet is meaningful and demonstrates some basic principles on how to work with diet systematic. The second chapter of this thesis we developed the resource NutriChem v1.0. A foodchemical database linking...... sites of diet on the disease pathway. We propose a framework for interrogating the critical targets in colon cancer process and identifying plant-based dietary interventions as important modifiers using a systems chemical biology approach. The fifth chapter of the thesis is on discovering of novel anti...

  16. Neutron dosimetry in biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sigurbjoernsson, B.; Smith, H.H.; Gustafsson, A.

    1965-01-01

    To study adequately the biological effects of different energy neutrons it is necessary to have high-intensity sources which are not contaminated by other radiations, the most serious of which are gamma rays. An effective dosimetry must provide an accurate measure of the absorbed dose, in biological materials, of each type of radiation at any reactor facility involved in radiobiological research. A standardized biological dosimetry, in addition to physical and chemical methods, may be desirable. The ideal data needed to achieve a fully documented dosimetry has been compiled by H. Glubrecht: (1) Energy spectrum and intensity of neutrons; (2) Angular distribution of neutrons on the whole surface of the irradiated object; (3) Additional undesired radiation accompanying the neutrons; (4) Physical state and chemical composition of the irradiated object. It is not sufficient to note only an integral dose value (e.g. in 'rad') as the biological effect depends on the above data

  17. Hammond Bay Biological Station

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Hammond Bay Biological Station (HBBS), located near Millersburg, Michigan, is a field station of the USGS Great Lakes Science Center (GLSC). HBBS was established by...

  18. Biologic Medications for Psoriasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... open('/content/cro/en/health/prescription-drugs/best-buy-drugs/Biologics_For_Psoriasis.print.html','win2','status=no, ... we recommend the following as Consumer Reports Best Buy Drugs . Adalimumab (Humira) Etanercept (Enbrel) Studies show that for ...

  19. Enhanced Biological Sampling Data

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This is a database of a variety of biological, reproductive, and energetic data collected from fish on the continental shelf in the northwest Atlantic Ocean. Species...

  20. Laboratory of Biological Modeling

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Laboratory of Biological Modeling is defined by both its methodologies and its areas of application. We use mathematical modeling in many forms and apply it to a...

  1. Large Pelagics Biological Survey

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Large Pelagics Biological Survey (LPBS) collects additional length and weight information and body parts such as otoliths, caudal vertebrae, dorsal spines, and...

  2. Biological and Pharmacological properties

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    First page Back Continue Last page Overview Graphics. Biological and Pharmacological properties. NOEA inhibits Ceramidase. Anandamide inhibits gap junction conductance and reduces sperm fertilizing capacity. Endogenous ligands for Cannabinoid receptors (anandamide and NPEA). Antibacterial and antiviral ...

  3. ERLN Biological Focus Area

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Environmental Response Laboratory Network supports the goal to increase national capacity for biological analysis of environmental samples. This includes methods development and verification, technology transfer, and collaboration with USDA, FERN, CDC.

  4. Fishery Biology Database (AGDBS)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Basic biological data are the foundation on which all assessments of fisheries resources are built. These include parameters such as the size and age composition of...

  5. Insecticides and Biological Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furness, G. O.

    1972-01-01

    Use of insecticides has been questioned due to their harmful effects on edible items. Biological control of insects along with other effective practices for checking spread of parasites on crops are discussed. (PS)

  6. Study of biological compartments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rocha, A.F.G. da

    1976-01-01

    The several types of biological compartments are studied such as monocompartmental system, one-compartment balanced system irreversible fluxes, two closed compartment system, three compartment systems, catenary systems and mammilary systems [pt

  7. The Biology of Behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broom, D. M.

    1981-01-01

    Discusses topics to aid in understanding animal behavior, including the value of the biological approach to psychology, functional systems, optimality and fitness, universality of environmental effects on behavior, and evolution of social behavior. (DS)

  8. Mammalian cell biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Elkind, M.M.

    1979-01-01

    This section contains summaries of research on mechanisms of lethality and radioinduced changes in mammalian cell properties, new cell systems for the study of the biology of mutation and neoplastic transformation, and comparative properties of ionizing radiations

  9. Synthetic Biology and the Translational Imperative.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heidari Feidt, Raheleh; Ienca, Marcello; Elger, Bernice Simone; Folcher, Marc

    2017-12-18

    Advances at the interface between the biological sciences and engineering are giving rise to emerging research fields such as synthetic biology. Harnessing the potential of synthetic biology requires timely and adequate translation into clinical practice. However, the translational research enterprise is currently facing fundamental obstacles that slow down the transition of scientific discoveries from the laboratory to the patient bedside. These obstacles including scarce financial resources and deficiency of organizational and logistic settings are widely discussed as primary impediments to translational research. In addition, a number of socio-ethical considerations inherent in translational research need to be addressed. As the translational capacity of synthetic biology is tightly linked to its social acceptance and ethical approval, ethical limitations may-together with financial and organizational problems-be co-determinants of suboptimal translation. Therefore, an early assessment of such limitations will contribute to proactively favor successful translation and prevent the promising potential of synthetic biology from remaining under-expressed. Through the discussion of two case-specific inventions in synthetic biology and their associated ethical implications, we illustrate the socio-ethical challenges ahead in the process of implementing synthetic biology into clinical practice. Since reducing the translational lag is essential for delivering the benefits of basic biomedical research to society at large and promoting global health, we advocate a moral obligation to accelerating translational research: the "translational imperative."

  10. Human papillomavirus molecular biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harden, Mallory E; Munger, Karl

    Human papillomaviruses are small DNA viruses with a tropism for squamous epithelia. A unique aspect of human papillomavirus molecular biology involves dependence on the differentiation status of the host epithelial cell to complete the viral lifecycle. A small group of these viruses are the etiologic agents of several types of human cancers, including oral and anogenital tract carcinomas. This review focuses on the basic molecular biology of human papillomaviruses. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Partitioning of genomic variance using biological pathways

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Edwards, Stefan McKinnon; Janss, Luc; Madsen, Per

    and that these variants are enriched for genes that are connected in biological pathways or for likely functional effects on genes. These biological findings provide valuable insight for developing better genomic models. These are statistical models for predicting complex trait phenotypes on the basis of SNP......-data and trait phenotypes and can account for a much larger fraction of the heritable component. A disadvantage is that this “black-box” modelling approach conceals the biological mechanisms underlying the trait. We propose to open the “black-box” by building SNP-set genomic models that evaluate the collective...... action of multiple SNPs in genes, biological pathways or other external findings on the trait phenotype. As proof of concept we have tested the modelling framework on several traits in dairy cattle....

  12. Magnetic resonance: safety measures and biological effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gordillo, I.; Lafuente, J.; Fernandez, C.; Barbero, M.J.; Cascon, E.

    1997-01-01

    The biological effects of electromagnetic fields is currently a subject of great controversy. For this reason, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and spectroscopy are constantly under investigation. The source of the risk in MRI is associated with the three types of electromagnetic radiation to which the patient is exposed: the static magnetic field, variable (gradient) magnetic fields and radiofrequency fields. Each is capable of producing significant biological effects when employed at sufficient intensity. Patients exposed to risk sources are those situated within the lines of force of the magnetic field, ellipsoid lines that are arranged around the magnet, representing the strength of the surrounding field. To date, at the intensity normally utilized in MRI(<2T) and respecting the field limit recommendations established by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for clinical use of this technique no adverse secondary biological effects have been reported. The known biological effects and other possible secondary effects are reviewed, and the recommended safety measures are discussed. (Author)

  13. Laser interaction with biological material mathematical modeling

    CERN Document Server

    Kulikov, Kirill

    2014-01-01

    This book covers the principles of laser interaction with biological cells and tissues of varying degrees of organization. The problems of biomedical diagnostics are considered. Scattering of laser irradiation of blood cells is modeled for biological structures (dermis, epidermis, vascular plexus). An analytic theory is provided which is based on solving the wave equation for the electromagnetic field. It allows the accurate analysis of interference effects arising from the partial superposition of scattered waves. Treated topics of mathematical modeling are: optical characterization of biological tissue with large-scale and small-scale inhomogeneities in the layers, heating blood vessel under laser irradiation incident on the outer surface of the skin and thermo-chemical denaturation of biological structures at the example of human skin.

  14. Two Dogmas of Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonore Fleming

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The problem with reductionism in biology is not the reduction, but the implicit attitude of determinism that usually accompanies it. Methodological reductionism is supported by deterministic beliefs, but making such a connection is problematic when it is based on an idea of determinism as fixed predictability. Conflating determinism with predictability gives rise to inaccurate models that overlook the dynamic complexity of our world, as well as ignore our epistemic limitations when we try to model it. Furthermore, the assumption of a strictly deterministic framework is unnecessarily hindering to biology. By removing the dogma of determinism, biological methods, including reductive methods, can be expanded to include stochastic models and probabilistic interpretations. Thus, the dogma of reductionism can be saved once its ties with determinism are severed. In this paper, I analyze two problems that have faced molecular biology for the last 50 years—protein folding and cancer. Both cases demonstrate the long influence of reductionism and determinism on molecular biology, as well as how abandoning determinism has opened the door to more probabilistic and unconstrained reductive methods in biology.

  15. Developmental biology, the stem cell of biological disciplines

    OpenAIRE

    Gilbert, Scott F.

    2017-01-01

    Developmental biology (including embryology) is proposed as "the stem cell of biological disciplines.” Genetics, cell biology, oncology, immunology, evolutionary mechanisms, neurobiology, and systems biology each has its ancestry in developmental biology. Moreover, developmental biology continues to roll on, budding off more disciplines, while retaining its own identity. While its descendant disciplines differentiate into sciences with a restricted set of paradigms, examples, and techniques, ...

  16. Development trend of radiation biology research-systems radiation biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Min Rui

    2010-01-01

    Radiation biology research has past 80 years. We have known much more about fundamentals, processes and results of biology effects induced by radiation and various factors that influence biology effects wide and deep, however many old and new scientific problems occurring in the field of radiation biology research remain to be illustrated. To explore and figure these scientific problems need systemic concept, methods and multi dimension view on the base of considerations of complexity of biology system, diversity of biology response, temporal and spatial process of biological effects during occurrence, and complex feed back network of biological regulations. (authors)

  17. Developmental biology, the stem cell of biological disciplines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Scott F

    2017-12-01

    Developmental biology (including embryology) is proposed as "the stem cell of biological disciplines." Genetics, cell biology, oncology, immunology, evolutionary mechanisms, neurobiology, and systems biology each has its ancestry in developmental biology. Moreover, developmental biology continues to roll on, budding off more disciplines, while retaining its own identity. While its descendant disciplines differentiate into sciences with a restricted set of paradigms, examples, and techniques, developmental biology remains vigorous, pluripotent, and relatively undifferentiated. In many disciplines, especially in evolutionary biology and oncology, the developmental perspective is being reasserted as an important research program.

  18. Understanding Biological Regulation Through Synthetic Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bashor, Caleb J; Collins, James J

    2018-03-16

    Engineering synthetic gene regulatory circuits proceeds through iterative cycles of design, building, and testing. Initial circuit designs must rely on often-incomplete models of regulation established by fields of reductive inquiry-biochemistry and molecular and systems biology. As differences in designed and experimentally observed circuit behavior are inevitably encountered, investigated, and resolved, each turn of the engineering cycle can force a resynthesis in understanding of natural network function. Here, we outline research that uses the process of gene circuit engineering to advance biological discovery. Synthetic gene circuit engineering research has not only refined our understanding of cellular regulation but furnished biologists with a toolkit that can be directed at natural systems to exact precision manipulation of network structure. As we discuss, using circuit engineering to predictively reorganize, rewire, and reconstruct cellular regulation serves as the ultimate means of testing and understanding how cellular phenotype emerges from systems-level network function. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Biophysics Volume 47 is May 20, 2018. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.

  19. Towards A Theoretical Biology: Reminiscences

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    engaged in since the start of my career at the University of Chicago. Theoretical biology was ... research on theoretical problems in biology. Waddington, an ... aimed at stimulating the development of such a theoretical biology. The role the ...

  20. [Biologics and mycobacterial diseases].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsuyuguchi, Kazunari; Matsumoto, Tomoshige

    2013-03-01

    Various biologics such as TNF-alpha inhibitor or IL-6 inhibitor are now widely used for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. Many reports suggested that one of the major issues is high risk of developing tuberculosis (TB) associated with using these agents, which is especially important in Japan where tuberculosis still remains endemic. Another concern is the risk of development of nontuberculous mycobacterial (NTM) diseases and we have only scanty information about it. The purpose of this symposium is to elucidate the role of biologics in the development of mycobacterial diseases and to establish the strategy to control them. First, Dr. Tohma showed the epidemiologic data of TB risks associated with using biologics calculated from the clinical database on National Database of Rheumatic Diseases by iR-net in Japan. He estimated TB risks in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients to be about four times higher compared with general populations and to become even higher by using biologics. He also pointed out a low rate of implementation of QuantiFERON test (QFT) as screening test for TB infection. Next, Dr. Tokuda discussed the issue of NTM disease associated with using biologics. He suggested the airway disease in RA patients might play some role in the development of NTM disease, which may conversely lead to overdiagnosis of NTM disease in RA patients. He suggested that NTM disease should not be uniformly considered a contraindication to treatment with biologics, considering from the results of recent multicenter study showing relatively favorable outcome of NTM patients receiving biologics. Patients with latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) should receive LTBI treatment before starting biologics. Dr. Kato, a chairperson of the Prevention Committee of the Japanese Society for Tuberculosis, proposed a new LTBI guideline including active implementation of LTBI treatment, introducing interferon gamma release assay, and appropriate selection of persons at high risk for