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Sample records for proteins evolve unique

  1. Unique Features of Halophilic Proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arakawa, Tsutomu; Yamaguchi, Rui; Tokunaga, Hiroko; Tokunaga, Masao

    2017-01-01

    Proteins from moderate and extreme halophiles have unique characteristics. They are highly acidic and hydrophilic, similar to intrinsically disordered proteins. These characteristics make the halophilic proteins soluble in water and fold reversibly. In addition to reversible folding, the rate of refolding of halophilic proteins from denatured structure is generally slow, often taking several days, for example, for extremely halophilic proteins. This slow folding rate makes the halophilic proteins a novel model system for folding mechanism analysis. High solubility and reversible folding also make the halophilic proteins excellent fusion partners for soluble expression of recombinant proteins.

  2. Evolvability of thermophilic proteins from archaea and bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takano, Kazufumi; Aoi, Atsushi; Koga, Yuichi; Kanaya, Shigenori

    2013-07-16

    Proteins from thermophiles possess high thermostability. The stabilization mechanisms differ between archaeal and bacterial proteins, whereby archaeal proteins are mainly stabilized via hydrophobic interactions and bacterial proteins by ion pairs. High stability is an important factor in promoting protein evolution, but the precise means by which different stabilization mechanisms affect the evolution process remain unclear. In this study, we investigated a random mutational drift of esterases from thermophilic archaea and bacteria at high temperatures. Our results indicate that mutations in archaeal proteins lead to improved function with no loss of stability, while mutant bacterial proteins are largely destabilized with decreased activity at high temperatures. On the basis of these findings, we suggest that archaeal proteins possess higher "evolvability" than bacterial proteins under temperature selection and are additionally able to evolve into eukaryotic proteins.

  3. Clustering evolving proteins into homologous families.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Cheong Xin; Mahbob, Maisarah; Ragan, Mark A

    2013-04-08

    Clustering sequences into groups of putative homologs (families) is a critical first step in many areas of comparative biology and bioinformatics. The performance of clustering approaches in delineating biologically meaningful families depends strongly on characteristics of the data, including content bias and degree of divergence. New, highly scalable methods have recently been introduced to cluster the very large datasets being generated by next-generation sequencing technologies. However, there has been little systematic investigation of how characteristics of the data impact the performance of these approaches. Using clusters from a manually curated dataset as reference, we examined the performance of a widely used graph-based Markov clustering algorithm (MCL) and a greedy heuristic approach (UCLUST) in delineating protein families coded by three sets of bacterial genomes of different G+C content. Both MCL and UCLUST generated clusters that are comparable to the reference sets at specific parameter settings, although UCLUST tends to under-cluster compositionally biased sequences (G+C content 33% and 66%). Using simulated data, we sought to assess the individual effects of sequence divergence, rate heterogeneity, and underlying G+C content. Performance decreased with increasing sequence divergence, decreasing among-site rate variation, and increasing G+C bias. Two MCL-based methods recovered the simulated families more accurately than did UCLUST. MCL using local alignment distances is more robust across the investigated range of sequence features than are greedy heuristics using distances based on global alignment. Our results demonstrate that sequence divergence, rate heterogeneity and content bias can individually and in combination affect the accuracy with which MCL and UCLUST can recover homologous protein families. For application to data that are more divergent, and exhibit higher among-site rate variation and/or content bias, MCL may often be the better

  4. Dissection of Ire1 functions reveals stress response mechanisms uniquely evolved in Candida glabrata.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taiga Miyazaki

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Proper protein folding in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER is vital in all eukaryotes. When misfolded proteins accumulate in the ER lumen, the transmembrane kinase/endoribonuclease Ire1 initiates splicing of HAC1 mRNA to generate the bZIP transcription factor Hac1, which subsequently activates its target genes to increase the protein-folding capacity of the ER. This cellular machinery, called the unfolded protein response (UPR, is believed to be an evolutionarily conserved mechanism in eukaryotes. In this study, we comprehensively characterized mutant phenotypes of IRE1 and other related genes in the human fungal pathogen Candida glabrata. Unexpectedly, Ire1 was required for the ER stress response independently of Hac1 in this fungus. C. glabrata Ire1 did not cleave mRNAs encoding Hac1 and other bZIP transcription factors identified in the C. glabrata genome. Microarray analysis revealed that the transcriptional response to ER stress is not mediated by Ire1, but instead is dependent largely on calcineurin signaling and partially on the Slt2 MAPK pathway. The loss of Ire1 alone did not confer increased antifungal susceptibility in C. glabrata contrary to UPR-defective mutants in other fungi. Taken together, our results suggest that the canonical Ire1-Hac1 UPR is not conserved in C. glabrata. It is known in metazoans that active Ire1 nonspecifically cleaves and degrades a subset of ER-localized mRNAs to reduce the ER load. Intriguingly, this cellular response could occur in an Ire1 nuclease-dependent fashion in C. glabrata. We also uncovered the attenuated virulence of the C. glabrata Δire1 mutant in a mouse model of disseminated candidiasis. This study has unveiled the unique evolution of ER stress response mechanisms in C. glabrata.

  5. Unique Protein Signature of Circulating Microparticles in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Østergaard, Ole; Nielsen, Christoffer; Iversen, Line V

    2013-01-01

    To characterize the unique qualities of proteins associated with circulating subcellular material in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) patients compared with healthy controls and patients with other chronic autoimmune diseases.......To characterize the unique qualities of proteins associated with circulating subcellular material in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) patients compared with healthy controls and patients with other chronic autoimmune diseases....

  6. Unique hepatic cytosolic arginase evolved independently in ureogenic freshwater air-breathing teleost, Heteropneustes fossilis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shilpee Srivastava

    Full Text Available Hepatic cytosolic arginase (ARG I, an enzyme of the urea cycle operating in the liver of ureotelic animals, is reported to be present in an ammoniotelic freshwater air-breathing teleost, Heteropneustes fossilis which has ureogenic potential. Antibodies available against mammalian ARG I showed no cross reactivity with the H. fossilis ARG I. We purified unique ARG I from H. fossilis liver. Purified ARG I is a homotrimer with molecular mass 75 kDa and subunit molecular mass of 24 kDa. The pI value of the enzyme was 8.5. It showed maximum activity at pH 10.5 and 55°C. The Km of purified enzyme for L-arginine was 2.65±0.39 mM. L-ornithine and N(ω-hydroxy-L-arginine showed inhibition of the ARG I activity, with Ki values 0.52±0.02mM and 0.08±0.006mM, respectively. Antibody raised against the purified fish liver ARG I showed exclusive specificity, and has no cross reactivity against fish liver ARG II and mammalian liver ARG I and ARG II. We found another isoform of arginase bound to the outer membrane of the mitochondria which was released by 150-200 mM KCl in the extraction medium. This isoform was immunologically different from the soluble cytosolic and mitochondrial arginase. The results of present study support that hepatic cytosolic arginase evolved in this ureogenic freshwater teleost, H. fossilis. Phylogenetic analysis confirms an independent evolution event that occurred much after the evolution of the cytosolic arginase of ureotelic vertebrates.

  7. EVOLVE

    CERN Document Server

    Deutz, André; Schütze, Oliver; Legrand, Pierrick; Tantar, Emilia; Tantar, Alexandru-Adrian

    2017-01-01

    This book comprises nine selected works on numerical and computational methods for solving multiobjective optimization, game theory, and machine learning problems. It provides extended versions of selected papers from various fields of science such as computer science, mathematics and engineering that were presented at EVOLVE 2013 held in July 2013 at Leiden University in the Netherlands. The internationally peer-reviewed papers include original work on important topics in both theory and applications, such as the role of diversity in optimization, statistical approaches to combinatorial optimization, computational game theory, and cell mapping techniques for numerical landscape exploration. Applications focus on aspects including robustness, handling multiple objectives, and complex search spaces in engineering design and computational biology.

  8. Foldability of a Natural De Novo Evolved Protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bungard, Dixie; Copple, Jacob S; Yan, Jing; Chhun, Jimmy J; Kumirov, Vlad K; Foy, Scott G; Masel, Joanna; Wysocki, Vicki H; Cordes, Matthew H J

    2017-11-07

    The de novo evolution of protein-coding genes from noncoding DNA is emerging as a source of molecular innovation in biology. Studies of random sequence libraries, however, suggest that young de novo proteins will not fold into compact, specific structures typical of native globular proteins. Here we show that Bsc4, a functional, natural de novo protein encoded by a gene that evolved recently from noncoding DNA in the yeast S. cerevisiae, folds to a partially specific three-dimensional structure. Bsc4 forms soluble, compact oligomers with high β sheet content and a hydrophobic core, and undergoes cooperative, reversible denaturation. Bsc4 lacks a specific quaternary state, however, existing instead as a continuous distribution of oligomer sizes, and binds dyes indicative of amyloid oligomers or molten globules. The combination of native-like and non-native-like properties suggests a rudimentary fold that could potentially act as a functional intermediate in the emergence of new folded proteins de novo. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Origins of Allostery and Evolvability in Proteins: A Case Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raman, Arjun S; White, K Ian; Ranganathan, Rama

    2016-07-14

    Proteins display the capacity for adaptation to new functions, a property critical for evolvability. But what structural principles underlie the capacity for adaptation? Here, we show that adaptation to a physiologically distinct class of ligand specificity in a PSD95, DLG1, ZO-1 (PDZ) domain preferentially occurs through class-bridging intermediate mutations located distant from the ligand-binding site. These mutations provide a functional link between ligand classes and demonstrate the principle of "conditional neutrality" in mediating evolutionary adaptation. Structures show that class-bridging mutations work allosterically to open up conformational plasticity at the active site, permitting novel functions while retaining existing function. More generally, the class-bridging phenotype arises from mutations in an evolutionarily conserved network of coevolving amino acids in the PDZ family (the sector) that connects the active site to distant surface sites. These findings introduce the concept that allostery in proteins could have its origins not in protein function but in the capacity to adapt. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Spot Accession Protein Protein Unique Secuence Number number ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    36. 702. 2,5. 0,021. 57. 5,26. 143. 13. 33. 865. 2,2. 0,007. 47. 5,24. 321. 6. 20. 492. GRP75_MOUSE. Stress-70 protein, mitochondrial. 2,9. 0,054. 73,4 5,81. 66. 5,18. 118. 6. 10. 663. 2,6. 0,046. 59. 6,18. 162. 10. 33. 717. 2,2. 0,003. 56. 6,2. 259. 11. 43. 1107. 2,1. 0,033. 37. 6,28. 334. 12. 40. 1113. 1,9. 0,013. 36. 6,16. 627. 15.

  11. Proteins evolve on the edge of supramolecular self-assembly

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Seisdedos, Hector; Empereur-Mot, Charly; Elad, Nadav; Levy, Emmanuel D.

    2017-08-01

    The self-association of proteins into symmetric complexes is ubiquitous in all kingdoms of life. Symmetric complexes possess unique geometric and functional properties, but their internal symmetry can pose a risk. In sickle-cell disease, the symmetry of haemoglobin exacerbates the effect of a mutation, triggering assembly into harmful fibrils. Here we examine the universality of this mechanism and its relation to protein structure geometry. We introduced point mutations solely designed to increase surface hydrophobicity among 12 distinct symmetric complexes from Escherichia coli. Notably, all responded by forming supramolecular assemblies in vitro, as well as in vivo upon heterologous expression in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Remarkably, in four cases, micrometre-long fibrils formed in vivo in response to a single point mutation. Biophysical measurements and electron microscopy revealed that mutants self-assembled in their folded states and so were not amyloid-like. Structural examination of 73 mutants identified supramolecular assembly hot spots predictable by geometry. A subsequent structural analysis of 7,471 symmetric complexes showed that geometric hot spots were buffered chemically by hydrophilic residues, suggesting a mechanism preventing mis-assembly of these regions. Thus, point mutations can frequently trigger folded proteins to self-assemble into higher-order structures. This potential is counterbalanced by negative selection and can be exploited to design nanomaterials in living cells.

  12. Unique expression of cytoskeletal proteins in human soft palate muscles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah, Farhan; Berggren, Diana; Holmlund, Thorbjörn; Levring Jäghagen, Eva; Stål, Per

    2016-03-01

    The human oropharyngeal muscles have a unique anatomy with diverse and intricate functions. To investigate if this specialization is also reflected in the cytoarchitecture of muscle fibers, intermediate filament proteins and the dystrophin-associated protein complex have been analyzed in two human palate muscles, musculus uvula (UV) and musculus palatopharyngeus (PP), with immunohistochenmical and morphological techniques. Human limb muscles were used as reference. The findings show that the soft palate muscle fibers have a cytoskeletal architecture that differs from the limb muscles. While all limb muscles showed immunoreaction for a panel of antibodies directed against different domains of cytoskeletal proteins desmin and dystrophin, a subpopulation of palate muscle fibers lacked or had a faint immunoreaction for desmin (UV 11.7% and PP 9.8%) and the C-terminal of the dystrophin molecule (UV 4.2% and PP 6.4%). The vast majority of these fibers expressed slow contractile protein myosin heavy chain I. Furthermore, an unusual staining pattern was also observed in these fibers for β-dystroglycan, caveolin-3 and neuronal nitric oxide synthase nNOS, which are all membrane-linking proteins associated with the dystrophin C-terminus. While the immunoreaction for nNOS was generally weak or absent, β-dystroglycan and caveolin-3 showed a stronger immunostaining. The absence or a low expression of cytoskeletal proteins otherwise considered ubiquitous and important for integration and contraction of muscle cells indicate a unique cytoarchitecture designed to meet the intricate demands of the upper airway muscles. It can be concluded that a subgroup of muscle fibers in the human soft palate appears to have special biomechanical properties, and their unique cytoarchitecture must be taken into account while assessing function and pathology in oropharyngeal muscles. © 2015 Anatomical Society.

  13. Experimental Evolution of a Green Fluorescent Protein Composed of 19 Unique Amino Acids without Tryptophan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawahara-Kobayashi, Akio; Hitotsuyanagi, Mitsuhiro; Amikura, Kazuaki; Kiga, Daisuke

    2014-04-01

    At some stage of evolution, genes of organisms may have encoded proteins that were synthesized using fewer than 20 unique amino acids. Similar to evolution of the natural 19-amino-acid proteins GroEL/ES, proteins composed of 19 unique amino acids would have been able to evolve by accumulating beneficial mutations within the 19-amino-acid repertoire encoded in an ancestral genetic code. Because Trp is thought to be the last amino acid included in the canonical 20-amino-acid repertoire, this late stage of protein evolution could be mimicked by experimental evolution of 19-amino-acid proteins without tryptophan (Trp). To further understand the evolution of proteins, we tried to mimic the evolution of a 19-amino-acid protein involving the accumulation of beneficial mutations using directed evolution by random mutagenesis on the whole targeted gene sequence. We created active 19-amino-acid green fluorescent proteins (GFPs) without Trp from a poorly fluorescent 19-amino-acid mutant, S1-W57F, by using directed evolution with two rounds of mutagenesis and selection. The N105I and S205T mutations showed beneficial effects on the S1-W57F mutant. When these two mutations were combined on S1-W57F, we observed an additive effect on the fluorescence intensity. In contrast, these mutations showed no clear improvement individually or in combination on GFPS1, which is the parental GFP mutant composed of 20 amino acids. Our results provide an additional example for the experimental evolution of 19-amino-acid proteins without Trp, and would help understand the mechanisms underlying the evolution of 19-amino-acid proteins. (236 words)

  14. Proteomics approach to identify unique xylem sap proteins in Pierce's disease-tolerant Vitis species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basha, Sheikh M; Mazhar, Hifza; Vasanthaiah, Hemanth K N

    2010-03-01

    Pierce's disease (PD) is a destructive bacterial disease of grapes caused by Xylella fastidiosa which is xylem-confined. The tolerance level to this disease varies among Vitis species. Our research was aimed at identifying unique xylem sap proteins present in PD-tolerant Vitis species. The results showed wide variation in the xylem sap protein composition, where a set of polypeptides with pI between 4.5 and 4.7 and M(r) of 31 kDa were present in abundant amount in muscadine (Vitis rotundifolia, PD-tolerant), in reduced levels in Florida hybrid bunch (Vitis spp., PD-tolerant) and absent in bunch grapes (Vitis vinifera, PD-susceptible). Liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry analysis of these proteins revealed their similarity to beta-1, 3-glucanase, peroxidase, and a subunit of oxygen-evolving enhancer protein 1, which are known to play role in defense and oxygen generation. In addition, the amount of free amino acids and soluble sugars was found to be significantly lower in xylem sap of muscadine genotypes compared to V. vinifera genotypes, indicating that the higher nutritional value of bunch grape sap may be more suitable for Xylella growth. These data suggest that the presence of these unique proteins in xylem sap is vital for PD tolerance in muscadine and Florida hybrid bunch grapes.

  15. Distinct Mechanism Evolved for Mycobacterial RNA Polymerase and Topoisomerase I Protein-Protein Interaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banda, Srikanth; Cao, Nan; Tse-Dinh, Yuk-Ching

    2017-09-15

    We report here a distinct mechanism of interaction between topoisomerase I and RNA polymerase in Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Mycobacterium smegmatis that has evolved independently from the previously characterized interaction between bacterial topoisomerase I and RNA polymerase. Bacterial DNA topoisomerase I is responsible for preventing the hyper-negative supercoiling of genomic DNA. The association of topoisomerase I with RNA polymerase during transcription elongation could efficiently relieve transcription-driven negative supercoiling. Our results demonstrate a direct physical interaction between the C-terminal domains of topoisomerase I (TopoI-CTDs) and the β' subunit of RNA polymerase of M. smegmatis in the absence of DNA. The TopoI-CTDs in mycobacteria are evolutionarily unrelated in amino acid sequence and three-dimensional structure to the TopoI-CTD found in the majority of bacterial species outside Actinobacteria, including Escherichia coli. The functional interaction between topoisomerase I and RNA polymerase has evolved independently in mycobacteria and E. coli, with distinctively different structural elements of TopoI-CTD utilized for this protein-protein interaction. Zinc ribbon motifs in E. coli TopoI-CTD are involved in the interaction with RNA polymerase. For M. smegmatis TopoI-CTD, a 27-amino-acid tail that is rich in basic residues at the C-terminal end is responsible for the interaction with RNA polymerase. Overexpression of recombinant TopoI-CTD in M. smegmatis competed with the endogenous topoisomerase I for protein-protein interactions with RNA polymerase. The TopoI-CTD overexpression resulted in decreased survival following treatment with antibiotics and hydrogen peroxide, supporting the importance of the protein-protein interaction between topoisomerase I and RNA polymerase during stress response of mycobacteria. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Specificity and evolvability in eukaryotic protein interaction networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Beltrao

    2007-02-01

    Full Text Available Progress in uncovering the protein interaction networks of several species has led to questions of what underlying principles might govern their organization. Few studies have tried to determine the impact of protein interaction network evolution on the observed physiological differences between species. Using comparative genomics and structural information, we show here that eukaryotic species have rewired their interactomes at a fast rate of approximately 10(-5 interactions changed per protein pair, per million years of divergence. For Homo sapiens this corresponds to 10(3 interactions changed per million years. Additionally we find that the specificity of binding strongly determines the interaction turnover and that different biological processes show significantly different link dynamics. In particular, human proteins involved in immune response, transport, and establishment of localization show signs of positive selection for change of interactions. Our analysis suggests that a small degree of molecular divergence can give rise to important changes at the network level. We propose that the power law distribution observed in protein interaction networks could be partly explained by the cell's requirement for different degrees of protein binding specificity.

  17. InterMap3D: predicting and visualizing co-evolving protein residues

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Oliveira, Rodrigo Gouveia; Roque, francisco jose sousa simôes almeida; Wernersson, Rasmus

    2009-01-01

    InterMap3D predicts co-evolving protein residues and plots them on the 3D protein structure. Starting with a single protein sequence, InterMap3D automatically finds a set of homologous sequences, generates an alignment and fetches the most similar 3D structure from the Protein Data Bank (PDB......). It can also accept a user-generated alignment. Based on the alignment, co-evolving residues are then predicted using three different methods: Row and Column Weighing of Mutual Information, Mutual Information/Entropy and Dependency. Finally, InterMap3D generates high-quality images of the protein...

  18. A unique deubiquitinase that deconjugates phosphoribosyl-linked protein ubiquitination

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Qiu, Jiazhang; Yu, Kaiwen; Fei, Xiaowen; Liu, Yao; Nakayasu, Ernesto S.; Piehowski, Paul D.; Shaw, Jared B.; Puvar, Kedar; Das, Chittaranjan; Liu, Xiaoyun; Luo, Zhao-Qing

    2017-05-12

    Ubiquitination regulates many aspects of host immunity and thus is a common target for infectious agents. Recent studies revealed that members of the SidE effector family of the bacterial pathogen Legionella pneumophila attacked several small GTPases associated with the endoplasmic reticulum by a novel ubiquitination mechanism that does not require the E1 and E2 enzymes of the host ubiquitination machinery. Following ubiquitin activation by ADP- ribosylation via a mono-ADP-ribosylation motif, ADP-ribosylated ubiquitin is cleaved by a phosphodiesterasedomainwithinSdeA,whichisconcomitantwiththelinkof phosphoribosylated ubiquitin to serine residues in the substrate. Here we demonstrate that the activity of SidEs is regulated by SidJ, another effector encoded by a gene situated in the locus coding for three members of the SidE family (SdeC, SdeB and SdeA). SidJ functions to remove ubiquitin from SidEs-modified substrates by cleaving the phosphodiester bond that links phosphoribosylated ubiquitin to protein substrates. Further, the deubiquitinase activity of SidJ is essential for its role in L. pneumophila infection. Finally, the activity of SidJ is required for efficiently reducing the abundance of ubiquitinated Rab33b in infected cells within a few hours after bacterial uptake. Our results establish SidJ as a deubiquitinase that functions to impose temporal regulation of the activity of the SidE effectors. The identification of SidJ may shed light on future study of signaling cascades mediated by this unique ubiquitination that also potentially regulates cellular processes in eukaryotic cells.

  19. Protein nanoparticle: A unique system as drug delivery vehicles

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2008-12-29

    Dec 29, 2008 ... Nanobiotechnology Research Center, Faculty of Chemical Engineering, Babol University of Technology, Iran. ... as potential carriers with unique advantages including ..... for intracellular uptake in BT/20 human breast cancer.

  20. [Family of ribosomal proteins S1 contains unique conservative domain].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deriusheva, E I; Machulin, A V; Selivanova, O M; Serdiuk, I N

    2010-01-01

    Different representatives of bacteria have different number of amino acid residues in the ribosomal proteins S1. This number varies from 111 (Spiroplasma kunkelii) to 863 a.a. (Treponema pallidum). Traditionally and for lack of this protein three-dimensional structure, its architecture is represented as repeating S1 domains. Number of these domains depends on the protein's length. Domain's quantity and its boundaries data are contained in the specialized databases, such as SMART, Pfam and PROSITE. However, for the same object these data may be very different. For search of domain's quantity and its boundaries, new approach, based on the analysis of dicted secondary structure (PsiPred), was used. This approach allowed us to reveal structural domains in amino acid sequences of S1 proteins and at that number varied from one to six. Alignment of S1 proteins, containing different domain's number, with the S1 RNAbinding domain of Escherichia coli PNPase elicited a fact that in family of ribosomal proteins SI one domain has maximal homology with S1 domain from PNPase. This conservative domain migrates along polypeptide chain and locates in proteins, containing different domain's number, according to specified pattern. In this domain as well in the S1 domain from PNPase, residues Phe-19, Phe-22, His-34, Asp-64 and Arg-68 are clustered on the surface and formed RNA binding site.

  1. Mcl-1 Ubiquitination: Unique Regulation of an Essential Survival Protein

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Mojsa

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Mcl-1 is an anti-apoptotic protein of the Bcl-2 family that is essential for the survival of multiple cell lineages and that is highly amplified in human cancer. Under physiological conditions, Mcl-1 expression is tightly regulated at multiple levels, involving transcriptional, post-transcriptional and post-translational processes. Ubiquitination of Mcl-1, that targets it for proteasomal degradation, allows for rapid elimination of the protein and triggering of cell death, in response to various cellular events. In the last decade, a number of studies have elucidated different pathways controlling Mcl-1 ubiquitination and degradation. Four different E3 ubiquitin-ligases (e.g., Mule, SCFβ-TrCP, SCFFbw7 and Trim17 and one deubiquitinase (e.g., USP9X, that respectively mediate and oppose Mcl-1 ubiquitination, have been formerly identified. The interaction between Mule and Mcl-1 can be modulated by other Bcl-2 family proteins, while recognition of Mcl-1 by the other E3 ubiquitin-ligases and deubiquitinase is influenced by phosphorylation of specific residues in Mcl-1. The protein kinases and E3 ubiquitin-ligases that are involved in the regulation of Mcl-1 stability vary depending on the cellular context, highlighting the complexity and pivotal role of Mcl-1 regulation. In this review, we attempt to recapitulate progress in understanding Mcl-1 regulation by the ubiquitin-proteasome system.

  2. Evolving trends in biosciences: Multi-purpose proteins - GFP and GFP-like proteins

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Krishna, K.; Ingole, B.S.

    The sea is considered as holding a clue to many known and unknown biologically active compounds. A family of protein named Green Fluorescent Proteins (GFP)-like proteins, initially isolated from marine organisms, started a trend in biotechnological...

  3. Snake venoms are integrated systems, but abundant venom proteins evolve more rapidly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aird, Steven D; Aggarwal, Shikha; Villar-Briones, Alejandro; Tin, Mandy Man-Ying; Terada, Kouki; Mikheyev, Alexander S

    2015-08-28

    While many studies have shown that extracellular proteins evolve rapidly, how selection acts on them remains poorly understood. We used snake venoms to understand the interaction between ecology, expression level, and evolutionary rate in secreted protein systems. Venomous snakes employ well-integrated systems of proteins and organic constituents to immobilize prey. Venoms are generally optimized to subdue preferred prey more effectively than non-prey, and many venom protein families manifest positive selection and rapid gene family diversification. Although previous studies have illuminated how individual venom protein families evolve, how selection acts on venoms as integrated systems, is unknown. Using next-generation transcriptome sequencing and mass spectrometry, we examined microevolution in two pitvipers, allopatrically separated for at least 1.6 million years, and their hybrids. Transcriptomes of parental species had generally similar compositions in regard to protein families, but for a given protein family, the homologs present and concentrations thereof sometimes differed dramatically. For instance, a phospholipase A2 transcript comprising 73.4 % of the Protobothrops elegans transcriptome, was barely present in the P. flavoviridis transcriptome (king cobra genome, suggesting that rapid evolution of abundant proteins may be generally true for snake venoms. Looking more broadly at Protobothrops, we show that rapid evolution of the most abundant components is due to positive selection, suggesting an interplay between abundance and adaptation. Given log-scale differences in toxin abundance, which are likely correlated with biosynthetic costs, we hypothesize that as a result of natural selection, snakes optimize return on energetic investment by producing more of venom proteins that increase their fitness. Natural selection then acts on the additive genetic variance of these components, in proportion to their contributions to overall fitness. Adaptive

  4. Evolved Escherichia coli strains for amplified, functional expression of membrane proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gul, Nadia; Linares, Daniel M; Ho, Franz Y; Poolman, Bert

    2014-01-09

    The major barrier to the physical characterization and structure determination of membrane proteins is low protein yield and/or low functionality in recombinant expression. The enteric bacterium Escherichia coli is the most widely employed organism for producing recombinant proteins. Beside several advantages of this expression host, one major drawback is that the protein of interest does not always adopt its native conformation and may end up in large insoluble aggregates. We describe a robust strategy to increase the likelihood of overexpressing membrane proteins in a functional state. The method involves fusion in tandem of green fluorescent protein and the erythromycin resistance protein (23S ribosomal RNA adenine N-6 methyltransferase, ErmC) to the C-terminus of a target membrane protein. The fluorescence of green fluorescent protein is used to report the folding state of the target protein, whereas ErmC is used to select for increased expression. By gradually increasing the erythromycin concentration of the medium and testing different membrane protein targets, we obtained a number of evolved strains of which four (NG2, NG3, NG5 and NG6) were characterized and their genome was fully sequenced. Strikingly, each of the strains carried a mutation in the hns gene, whose product is involved in genome organization and transcriptional silencing. The degree of expression of (membrane) proteins correlates with the severity of the hns mutation, but cells in which hns was deleted showed an intermediate expression performance. We propose that (partial) removal of the transcriptional silencing mechanism changes the levels of proteins essential for the functional overexpression of membrane proteins. © 2013.

  5. Unique self-assembly properties of a bridge-shaped protein dimer with quantum dots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jianhao; Jiang, Pengju; Gao, Liqian; Yu, Yongsheng; Lu, Yao; Qiu, Lin; Wang, Cheli; Xia, Jiang

    2013-09-01

    How protein-protein interaction affects protein-nanoparticle self-assembly is the key to the understanding of biomolecular coating of nanoparticle in biological fluids. However, the relationship between protein shape and its interaction with nanoparticles is still under-exploited because of lack of a well-conceived binding system and a method to detect the subtle change in the protein-nanoparticle assemblies. Noticing this unresolved need, we cloned and expressed a His-tagged SpeA protein that adopts a bridge-shaped dimer structure, and utilized a high-resolution capillary electrophoresis method to monitor assembly formation between the protein and quantum dots (QDs, 5 nm in diameter). We observed that the bridge-shaped structure rendered a low SpeA:QD stoichiometry at saturation. Also, close monitoring of imidazole (Im) displacement of surface-bound protein revealed a unique two-step process. High-concentration Im could displace surface-bound SpeA protein and form a transient QD-protein intermediate, through a kinetically controlled displacement process. An affinity-driven equilibrium step then followed, resulting in re-assembling of the QD-protein complex in about 1 h. Through a temporarily formed intermediate, Im causes a rearrangement of His-tagged proteins on the surface. Thus, our work showcases that the synergistic interplay between QD-His-tag interaction and protein-protein interaction can result in unique properties of protein-nanoparticle assembly for the first time.

  6. Nonsynonymous substitution rate (Ka is a relatively consistent parameter for defining fast-evolving and slow-evolving protein-coding genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Lei

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mammalian genome sequence data are being acquired in large quantities and at enormous speeds. We now have a tremendous opportunity to better understand which genes are the most variable or conserved, and what their particular functions and evolutionary dynamics are, through comparative genomics. Results We chose human and eleven other high-coverage mammalian genome data–as well as an avian genome as an outgroup–to analyze orthologous protein-coding genes using nonsynonymous (Ka and synonymous (Ks substitution rates. After evaluating eight commonly-used methods of Ka and Ks calculation, we observed that these methods yielded a nearly uniform result when estimating Ka, but not Ks (or Ka/Ks. When sorting genes based on Ka, we noticed that fast-evolving and slow-evolving genes often belonged to different functional classes, with respect to species-specificity and lineage-specificity. In particular, we identified two functional classes of genes in the acquired immune system. Fast-evolving genes coded for signal-transducing proteins, such as receptors, ligands, cytokines, and CDs (cluster of differentiation, mostly surface proteins, whereas the slow-evolving genes were for function-modulating proteins, such as kinases and adaptor proteins. In addition, among slow-evolving genes that had functions related to the central nervous system, neurodegenerative disease-related pathways were enriched significantly in most mammalian species. We also confirmed that gene expression was negatively correlated with evolution rate, i.e. slow-evolving genes were expressed at higher levels than fast-evolving genes. Our results indicated that the functional specializations of the three major mammalian clades were: sensory perception and oncogenesis in primates, reproduction and hormone regulation in large mammals, and immunity and angiotensin in rodents. Conclusion Our study suggests that Ka calculation, which is less biased compared to Ks and Ka

  7. Selective Advantage of Recombination in Evolving Protein Populations:. a Lattice Model Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Paul D.; Pollock, David D.; Goldstein, Richard A.

    Recent research has attempted to clarify the contributions of several mutational processes, such as substitutions or homologous recombination. Simplistic, tractable protein models, which determine the compact native structure phenotype from the sequence genotype, are well-suited to such studies. In this paper, we use a lattice-protein model to examine the effects of point mutation and homologous recombination on evolving populations of proteins. We find that while the majority of mutation and recombination events are neutral or deleterious, recombination is far more likely to be beneficial. This results in a faster increase in fitness during evolution, although the final fitness level is not significantly changed. This transient advantage provides an evolutionary advantage to subpopulations that undergo recombination, allowing fixation of recombination to occur in the population.

  8. Unique self-assembly properties of a bridge-shaped protein dimer with quantum dots

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, Jianhao; Jiang, Pengju; Gao, Liqian; Yu, Yongsheng; Lu, Yao; Qiu, Lin; Wang, Cheli; Xia, Jiang

    2013-01-01

    How protein–protein interaction affects protein–nanoparticle self-assembly is the key to the understanding of biomolecular coating of nanoparticle in biological fluids. However, the relationship between protein shape and its interaction with nanoparticles is still under-exploited because of lack of a well-conceived binding system and a method to detect the subtle change in the protein–nanoparticle assemblies. Noticing this unresolved need, we cloned and expressed a His-tagged SpeA protein that adopts a bridge-shaped dimer structure, and utilized a high-resolution capillary electrophoresis method to monitor assembly formation between the protein and quantum dots (QDs, 5 nm in diameter). We observed that the bridge-shaped structure rendered a low SpeA:QD stoichiometry at saturation. Also, close monitoring of imidazole (Im) displacement of surface-bound protein revealed a unique two-step process. High-concentration Im could displace surface-bound SpeA protein and form a transient QD–protein intermediate, through a kinetically controlled displacement process. An affinity-driven equilibrium step then followed, resulting in re-assembling of the QD–protein complex in about 1 h. Through a temporarily formed intermediate, Im causes a rearrangement of His-tagged proteins on the surface. Thus, our work showcases that the synergistic interplay between QD–His-tag interaction and protein–protein interaction can result in unique properties of protein–nanoparticle assembly for the first time

  9. Toxic and nontoxic components of botulinum neurotoxin complex are evolved from a common ancestral zinc protein

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Inui, Ken; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Miyata, Keita; Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro; Suzuki, Tomonori; Shikamori, Yasuyuki; Ohyama, Tohru; Niwa, Koichi; Watanabe, Toshihiro

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► BoNT and NTNHA proteins share a similar protein architecture. ► NTNHA and BoNT were both identified as zinc-binding proteins. ► NTNHA does not have a classical HEXXH zinc-coordinating motif similar to that found in all serotypes of BoNT. ► Homology modeling implied probable key residues involved in zinc coordination. -- Abstract: Zinc atoms play an essential role in a number of enzymes. Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), the most potent toxin known in nature, is a zinc-dependent endopeptidase. Here we identify the nontoxic nonhemagglutinin (NTNHA), one of the BoNT-complex constituents, as a zinc-binding protein, along with BoNT. A protein structure classification database search indicated that BoNT and NTNHA share a similar domain architecture, comprising a zinc-dependent metalloproteinase-like, BoNT coiled-coil motif and concanavalin A-like domains. Inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry analysis demonstrated that every single NTNHA molecule contains a single zinc atom. This is the first demonstration of a zinc atom in this protein, as far as we know. However, the NTNHA molecule does not possess any known zinc-coordinating motif, whereas all BoNT serotypes possess the classical HEXXH motif. Homology modeling of the NTNHA structure implied that a consensus K-C-L-I-K-X 35 -D sequence common among all NTNHA serotype molecules appears to coordinate a single zinc atom. These findings lead us to propose that NTNHA and BoNT may have evolved distinct functional specializations following their branching out from a common ancestral zinc protein.

  10. Toxic and nontoxic components of botulinum neurotoxin complex are evolved from a common ancestral zinc protein

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Inui, Ken [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan); Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, 1-8 Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-8472 (Japan); Sagane, Yoshimasa [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan); Miyata, Keita [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan); Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, 1-8 Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-8472 (Japan); Miyashita, Shin-Ichiro [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan); Suzuki, Tomonori [Department of Bacteriology, Okayama University Graduate School of Medicine, Dentistry and Pharmaceutical Sciences, 2-5-1 Shikata-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama 700-8558 (Japan); Shikamori, Yasuyuki [Agilent Technologies International Japan, Ltd. Takaura-cho 9-1, Hachioji-shi, Tokyo 192-0033 (Japan); Ohyama, Tohru; Niwa, Koichi [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan); Watanabe, Toshihiro, E-mail: t-watana@bioindustry.nodai.ac.jp [Department of Food and Cosmetic Science, Faculty of Bioindustry, Tokyo University of Agriculture, 196 Yasaka, Abashiri 099-2493 (Japan)

    2012-03-16

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer BoNT and NTNHA proteins share a similar protein architecture. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer NTNHA and BoNT were both identified as zinc-binding proteins. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer NTNHA does not have a classical HEXXH zinc-coordinating motif similar to that found in all serotypes of BoNT. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Homology modeling implied probable key residues involved in zinc coordination. -- Abstract: Zinc atoms play an essential role in a number of enzymes. Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), the most potent toxin known in nature, is a zinc-dependent endopeptidase. Here we identify the nontoxic nonhemagglutinin (NTNHA), one of the BoNT-complex constituents, as a zinc-binding protein, along with BoNT. A protein structure classification database search indicated that BoNT and NTNHA share a similar domain architecture, comprising a zinc-dependent metalloproteinase-like, BoNT coiled-coil motif and concanavalin A-like domains. Inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry analysis demonstrated that every single NTNHA molecule contains a single zinc atom. This is the first demonstration of a zinc atom in this protein, as far as we know. However, the NTNHA molecule does not possess any known zinc-coordinating motif, whereas all BoNT serotypes possess the classical HEXXH motif. Homology modeling of the NTNHA structure implied that a consensus K-C-L-I-K-X{sub 35}-D sequence common among all NTNHA serotype molecules appears to coordinate a single zinc atom. These findings lead us to propose that NTNHA and BoNT may have evolved distinct functional specializations following their branching out from a common ancestral zinc protein.

  11. Spermidine is bound to a unique protein in early sea urchin embryos

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Canellakis, Z.N.; Bondy, P.K.; Infante, A.A.

    1985-01-01

    Spermidine is rapidly taken up and becomes bound to protein during the very early hours of sea urchin embryogenesis. During the first 6 hr after fertilization of freshly obtained sea urchin eggs (Strongylocentrotus purpuratus), which are incubated in the presence of exogenous [ 3 H]-spermidine, up to 7% of the total cell-associated spermidine appears uniquely as spermidine bound in macromolecular form. This unique protein containing spermidine migrates as a single radioactive band in gel electrophoresis. It has a Mr of approximately equal to 30,000 and is readily distinguishable from the protein initiation factor eIF-4D, which has a Mr of 18,000, the only other identifiable protein known to date to be posttranslationally modified by polyamines

  12. Shared and Unique Proteins in Human, Mouse and Rat Saliva Proteomes: Footprints of Functional Adaptation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert C. Karn

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The overall goal of our study was to compare the proteins found in the saliva proteomes of three mammals: human, mouse and rat. Our first objective was to compare two human proteomes with very different analysis depths. The 89 shared proteins in this comparison apparently represent a core of highly-expressed human salivary proteins. Of the proteins unique to each proteome, one-half to 2/3 lack signal peptides and probably are contaminants instead of less highly-represented salivary proteins. We recently published the first rodent saliva proteomes with saliva collected from the genome mouse (C57BL/6 and the genome rat (BN/SsNHsd/Mcwi. Our second objective was to compare the proteins in the human proteome with those we identified in the genome mouse and rat to determine those common to all three mammals, as well as the specialized rodent subset. We also identified proteins unique to each of the three mammals, because differences in the secreted protein constitutions can provide clues to differences in the evolutionary adaptation of the secretions in the three different mammals.

  13. Unique Pattern of Protein-Bound Maillard Reaction Products in Manuka (Leptospermum scoparium) Honey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hellwig, Michael; Rückriemen, Jana; Sandner, Daniel; Henle, Thomas

    2017-05-03

    As a unique feature, honey from the New Zealand manuka tree (Leptospermum scoparium) contains substantial amounts of dihydroxyacetone (DHA) and methylglyoxal (MGO). Although MGO is a reactive intermediate in the Maillard reaction, very little is known about reactions of MGO with honey proteins. We hypothesized that the abundance of MGO should result in a particular pattern of protein-bound Maillard reaction products (MRPs) in manuka honey. A protein-rich high-molecular-weight fraction was isolated from 12 manuka and 8 non-manuka honeys and hydrolyzed enzymatically. By HPLC-MS/MS, 8 MRPs, namely, N-ε-fructosyllysine, N-ε-maltulosyllysine, carboxymethyllysine, carboxyethyllysine (CEL), pyrraline, formyline, maltosine, and methylglyoxal-derived hydroimidazolone 1 (MG-H1), were quantitated. Compared to non-manuka honeys, the manuka honeys were characterized by high concentrations of CEL and MG-H1, whereas the formation of N-ε-fructosyllysine was suppressed, indicating concurrence reactions of glucose and MGO at the ε-amino group of protein-bound lysine. Up to 31% of the lysine and 8% of the arginine residues, respectively, in the manuka honey protein can be modified to CEL and MG-H1, respectively. CEL and MG-H1 concentrations correlated strongly with the MGO concentration of the honeys. Manuka honey possesses a special pattern of protein-bound MRPs, which might be used to prove the reliability of labeled MGO levels in honeys and possibly enable the detection of fraudulent MGO or DHA addition to honey.

  14. Positive lysosomal modulation as a unique strategy to treat age-related protein accumulation diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahr, Ben A; Wisniewski, Meagan L; Butler, David

    2012-04-01

    Lysosomes are involved in degrading and recycling cellular ingredients, and their disruption with age may contribute to amyloidogenesis, paired helical filaments (PHFs), and α-synuclein and mutant huntingtin aggregation. Lysosomal cathepsins are upregulated by accumulating proteins and more so by the modulator Z-Phe-Ala-diazomethylketone (PADK). Such positive modulators of the lysosomal system have been studied in the well-characterized hippocampal slice model of protein accumulation that exhibits the pathogenic cascade of tau aggregation, tubulin breakdown, microtubule destabilization, transport failure, and synaptic decline. Active cathepsins were upregulated by PADK; Rab proteins were modified as well, indicating enhanced trafficking, whereas lysosome-associated membrane protein and proteasome markers were unchanged. Lysosomal modulation reduced the pre-existing PHF deposits, restored tubulin structure and transport, and recovered synaptic components. Further proof-of-principle studies used Alzheimer disease mouse models. It was recently reported that systemic PADK administration caused dramatic increases in cathepsin B protein and activity levels, whereas neprilysin, insulin-degrading enzyme, α-secretase, and β-secretase were unaffected by PADK. In the transgenic models, PADK treatment resulted in clearance of intracellular amyloid beta (Aβ) peptide and concomitant reduction of extracellular deposits. Production of the less pathogenic Aβ(1-38) peptide corresponded with decreased levels of Aβ(1-42), supporting the lysosome's antiamyloidogenic role through intracellular truncation. Amelioration of synaptic and behavioral deficits also indicates a neuroprotective function of the lysosomal system, identifying lysosomal modulation as an avenue for disease-modifying therapies. From the in vitro and in vivo findings, unique lysosomal modulators represent a minimally invasive, pharmacologically controlled strategy against protein accumulation disorders to enhance

  15. Cytotoxic protein from the mushroom Coprinus comatus possesses a unique mode for glycan binding and specificity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Peilan; Yang, Guang; Xia, Changqing; Polston, Jane E.; Li, Gengnan; Li, Shiwu; Lin, Zhao; Yang, Li-jun; Bruner, Steven D.

    2017-01-01

    Glycans possess significant chemical diversity; glycan binding proteins (GBPs) recognize specific glycans to translate their structures to functions in various physiological and pathological processes. Therefore, the discovery and characterization of novel GBPs and characterization of glycan–GBP interactions are significant to provide potential targets for therapeutic intervention of many diseases. Here, we report the biochemical, functional, and structural characterization of a 130-amino-acid protein, Y3, from the mushroom Coprinus comatus. Biochemical studies of recombinant Y3 from a yeast expression system demonstrated the protein is a unique GBP. Additionally, we show that Y3 exhibits selective and potent cytotoxicity toward human T-cell leukemia Jurkat cells compared with a panel of cancer cell lines via inducing caspase-dependent apoptosis. Screening of a glycan array demonstrated GalNAcβ1–4(Fucα1–3)GlcNAc (LDNF) as a specific Y3-binding ligand. To provide a structural basis for function, the crystal structure was solved to a resolution of 1.2 Å, revealing a single-domain αβα-sandwich motif. Two monomers were dimerized to form a large 10-stranded, antiparallel β-sheet flanked by α-helices on each side, representing a unique oligomerization mode among GBPs. A large glycan binding pocket extends into the dimeric interface, and docking of LDNF identified key residues for glycan interactions. Disruption of residues predicted to be involved in LDNF/Y3 interactions resulted in the significant loss of binding to Jurkat T-cells and severely impaired their cytotoxicity. Collectively, these results demonstrate Y3 to be a GBP with selective cytotoxicity toward human T-cell leukemia cells and indicate its potential use in cancer diagnosis and treatment. PMID:28784797

  16. Cytotoxic protein from the mushroom Coprinus comatus possesses a unique mode for glycan binding and specificity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Peilan; Li, Kunhua; Yang, Guang; Xia, Changqing; Polston, Jane E; Li, Gengnan; Li, Shiwu; Lin, Zhao; Yang, Li-Jun; Bruner, Steven D; Ding, Yousong

    2017-08-22

    Glycans possess significant chemical diversity; glycan binding proteins (GBPs) recognize specific glycans to translate their structures to functions in various physiological and pathological processes. Therefore, the discovery and characterization of novel GBPs and characterization of glycan-GBP interactions are significant to provide potential targets for therapeutic intervention of many diseases. Here, we report the biochemical, functional, and structural characterization of a 130-amino-acid protein, Y3, from the mushroom Coprinus comatus Biochemical studies of recombinant Y3 from a yeast expression system demonstrated the protein is a unique GBP. Additionally, we show that Y3 exhibits selective and potent cytotoxicity toward human T-cell leukemia Jurkat cells compared with a panel of cancer cell lines via inducing caspase-dependent apoptosis. Screening of a glycan array demonstrated GalNAcβ1-4(Fucα1-3)GlcNAc (LDNF) as a specific Y3-binding ligand. To provide a structural basis for function, the crystal structure was solved to a resolution of 1.2 Å, revealing a single-domain αβα-sandwich motif. Two monomers were dimerized to form a large 10-stranded, antiparallel β-sheet flanked by α-helices on each side, representing a unique oligomerization mode among GBPs. A large glycan binding pocket extends into the dimeric interface, and docking of LDNF identified key residues for glycan interactions. Disruption of residues predicted to be involved in LDNF/Y3 interactions resulted in the significant loss of binding to Jurkat T-cells and severely impaired their cytotoxicity. Collectively, these results demonstrate Y3 to be a GBP with selective cytotoxicity toward human T-cell leukemia cells and indicate its potential use in cancer diagnosis and treatment.

  17. Rapidly evolving zona pellucida domain proteins are a major component of the vitelline envelope of abalone eggs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aagaard, Jan E.; Yi, Xianhua; MacCoss, Michael J.; Swanson, Willie J.

    2006-01-01

    Proteins harboring a zona pellucida (ZP) domain are prominent components of vertebrate egg coats. Although less well characterized, the egg coat of the non-vertebrate marine gastropod abalone (Haliotis spp.) is also known to contain a ZP domain protein, raising the possibility of a common molecular basis of metazoan egg coat structures. Egg coat proteins from vertebrate as well as non-vertebrate taxa have been shown to evolve under positive selection. Studied most extensively in the abalone system, coevolution between adaptively diverging egg coat and sperm proteins may contribute to the rapid development of reproductive isolation. Thus, identifying the pattern of evolution among egg coat proteins is important in understanding the role these genes may play in the speciation process. The purpose of the present study is to characterize the constituent proteins of the egg coat [vitelline envelope (VE)] of abalone eggs and to provide preliminary evidence regarding how selection has acted on VE proteins during abalone evolution. A proteomic approach is used to match tandem mass spectra of peptides from purified VE proteins with abalone ovary EST sequences, identifying 9 of 10 ZP domain proteins as components of the VE. Maximum likelihood models of codon evolution suggest positive selection has acted among a subset of amino acids for 6 of these genes. This work provides further evidence of the prominence of ZP proteins as constituents of the egg coat, as well as the prominent role of positive selection in diversification of these reproductive proteins. PMID:17085584

  18. CD4-specific designed ankyrin repeat proteins are novel potent HIV entry inhibitors with unique characteristics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Schweizer

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Here, we describe the generation of a novel type of HIV entry inhibitor using the recently developed Designed Ankyrin Repeat Protein (DARPin technology. DARPin proteins specific for human CD4 were selected from a DARPin DNA library using ribosome display. Selected pool members interacted specifically with CD4 and competed with gp120 for binding to CD4. DARPin proteins derived in the initial selection series inhibited HIV in a dose-dependent manner, but showed a relatively high variability in their capacity to block replication of patient isolates on primary CD4 T cells. In consequence, a second series of CD4-specific DARPins with improved affinity for CD4 was generated. These 2nd series DARPins potently inhibit infection of genetically divergent (subtype B and C HIV isolates in the low nanomolar range, independent of coreceptor usage. Importantly, the actions of the CD4 binding DARPins were highly specific: no effect on cell viability or activation, CD4 memory cell function, or interference with CD4-independent virus entry was observed. These novel CD4 targeting molecules described here combine the unique characteristics of DARPins-high physical stability, specificity and low production costs-with the capacity to potently block HIV entry, rendering them promising candidates for microbicide development.

  19. Cells determine cell density using a small protein bound to a unique tissue-specific phospholipid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher J. Petzold

    2013-10-01

    bone cofactor was identified as a lipid containing a ceramide phosphate, a single chained glycerol lipid and a linker. Tendon uses a different cofactor made up of two fatty acid chains linked directly to the phosphate yielding a molecule about half the size. Moreover, adding the tendon factor/cofactor to osteosarcoma cells causes them to stop growing, which is opposite to its role with tendon cells. Thus, the cofactor is cell type specific both in composition and in the triggered response. Further support of its proposed role came from frozen sections from 5 week old mice where an antibody to the factor stained strongly at the growing ends of the tendon as predicted. In conclusion, the molecule needed for cell density signaling is a small protein bound to a unique, tissue-specific phospholipid yielding a membrane associated but diffusible molecule. Signal transduction is postulated to occur by an increased ordering of the plasma membrane as the concentration of this protein/lipid increases with cell density.

  20. The unique N-terminal zinc finger of synaptotagmin-like protein 4 reveals FYVE structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyamoto, Kazuhide; Nakatani, Arisa; Saito, Kazuki

    2017-12-01

    Synaptotagmin-like protein 4 (Slp4), expressed in human platelets, is associated with dense granule release. Slp4 is comprised of the N-terminal zinc finger, Slp homology domain, and C2 domains. We synthesized a compact construct (the Slp4N peptide) corresponding to the Slp4 N-terminal zinc finger. Herein, we have determined the solution structure of the Slp4N peptide by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR). Furthermore, experimental, chemical modification of Cys residues revealed that the Slp4N peptide binds two zinc atoms to mediate proper folding. NMR data showed that eight Cys residues coordinate zinc atoms in a cross-brace fashion. The Simple Modular Architecture Research Tool database predicted the structure of Slp4N as a RING finger. However, the actual structure of the Slp4N peptide adopts a unique C 4 C 4 -type FYVE fold and is distinct from a RING fold. To create an artificial RING finger (ARF) with specific ubiquitin-conjugating enzyme (E2)-binding capability, cross-brace structures with eight zinc-ligating residues are needed as the scaffold. The cross-brace structure of the Slp4N peptide could be utilized as the scaffold for the design of ARFs. © 2017 The Protein Society.

  1. Evolved Escherichia coli Strains for Amplified, Functional Expression of Membrane Proteins

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gul, Nadia; Linares, Daniel M.; Ho, Franz Y.; Poolman, Bert

    2014-01-01

    The major barrier to the physical characterization and structure determination of membrane proteins is low protein yield and/or low functionality in recombinant expression. The enteric bacterium Escherichia coli is the most widely employed organism for producing recombinant proteins. Beside several

  2. Duplicate Abalone Egg Coat Proteins Bind Sperm Lysin Similarly, but Evolve Oppositely, Consistent with Molecular Mimicry at Fertilization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aagaard, Jan E.; Springer, Stevan A.; Soelberg, Scott D.; Swanson, Willie J.

    2013-01-01

    Sperm and egg proteins constitute a remarkable paradigm in evolutionary biology: despite their fundamental role in mediating fertilization (suggesting stasis), some of these molecules are among the most rapidly evolving ones known, and their divergence can lead to reproductive isolation. Because of strong selection to maintain function among interbreeding individuals, interacting fertilization proteins should also exhibit a strong signal of correlated divergence among closely related species. We use evidence of such molecular co-evolution to target biochemical studies of fertilization in North Pacific abalone (Haliotis spp.), a model system of reproductive protein evolution. We test the evolutionary rates (d N/d S) of abalone sperm lysin and two duplicated egg coat proteins (VERL and VEZP14), and find a signal of co-evolution specific to ZP-N, a putative sperm binding motif previously identified by homology modeling. Positively selected residues in VERL and VEZP14 occur on the same face of the structural model, suggesting a common mode of interaction with sperm lysin. We test this computational prediction biochemically, confirming that the ZP-N motif is sufficient to bind lysin and that the affinities of VERL and VEZP14 are comparable. However, we also find that on phylogenetic lineages where lysin and VERL evolve rapidly, VEZP14 evolves slowly, and vice versa. We describe a model of sexual conflict that can recreate this pattern of anti-correlated evolution by assuming that VEZP14 acts as a VERL mimic, reducing the intensity of sexual conflict and slowing the co-evolution of lysin and VERL. PMID:23408913

  3. Duplicate abalone egg coat proteins bind sperm lysin similarly, but evolve oppositely, consistent with molecular mimicry at fertilization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan E Aagaard

    Full Text Available Sperm and egg proteins constitute a remarkable paradigm in evolutionary biology: despite their fundamental role in mediating fertilization (suggesting stasis, some of these molecules are among the most rapidly evolving ones known, and their divergence can lead to reproductive isolation. Because of strong selection to maintain function among interbreeding individuals, interacting fertilization proteins should also exhibit a strong signal of correlated divergence among closely related species. We use evidence of such molecular co-evolution to target biochemical studies of fertilization in North Pacific abalone (Haliotis spp., a model system of reproductive protein evolution. We test the evolutionary rates (d(N/d(S of abalone sperm lysin and two duplicated egg coat proteins (VERL and VEZP14, and find a signal of co-evolution specific to ZP-N, a putative sperm binding motif previously identified by homology modeling. Positively selected residues in VERL and VEZP14 occur on the same face of the structural model, suggesting a common mode of interaction with sperm lysin. We test this computational prediction biochemically, confirming that the ZP-N motif is sufficient to bind lysin and that the affinities of VERL and VEZP14 are comparable. However, we also find that on phylogenetic lineages where lysin and VERL evolve rapidly, VEZP14 evolves slowly, and vice versa. We describe a model of sexual conflict that can recreate this pattern of anti-correlated evolution by assuming that VEZP14 acts as a VERL mimic, reducing the intensity of sexual conflict and slowing the co-evolution of lysin and VERL.

  4. A unique bivalent binding and inhibition mechanism by the yatapoxvirus interleukin 18 binding protein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian Krumm

    Full Text Available Interleukin 18 (IL18 is a cytokine that plays an important role in inflammation as well as host defense against microbes. Mammals encode a soluble inhibitor of IL18 termed IL18 binding protein (IL18BP that modulates IL18 activity through a negative feedback mechanism. Many poxviruses encode homologous IL18BPs, which contribute to virulence. Previous structural and functional studies on IL18 and IL18BPs revealed an essential binding hot spot involving a lysine on IL18 and two aromatic residues on IL18BPs. The aromatic residues are conserved among the very diverse mammalian and poxviruses IL18BPs with the notable exception of yatapoxvirus IL18BPs, which lack a critical phenylalanine residue. To understand the mechanism by which yatapoxvirus IL18BPs neutralize IL18, we solved the crystal structure of the Yaba-Like Disease Virus (YLDV IL18BP and IL18 complex at 1.75 Å resolution. YLDV-IL18BP forms a disulfide bonded homo-dimer engaging IL18 in a 2∶2 stoichiometry, in contrast to the 1∶1 complex of ectromelia virus (ECTV IL18BP and IL18. Disruption of the dimer interface resulted in a functional monomer, however with a 3-fold decrease in binding affinity. The overall architecture of the YLDV-IL18BP:IL18 complex is similar to that observed in the ECTV-IL18BP:IL18 complex, despite lacking the critical lysine-phenylalanine interaction. Through structural and mutagenesis studies, contact residues that are unique to the YLDV-IL18BP:IL18 binding interface were identified, including Q67, P116 of YLDV-IL18BP and Y1, S105 and D110 of IL18. Overall, our studies show that YLDV-IL18BP is unique among the diverse family of mammalian and poxvirus IL-18BPs in that it uses a bivalent binding mode and a unique set of interacting residues for binding IL18. However, despite this extensive divergence, YLDV-IL18BP binds to the same surface of IL18 used by other IL18BPs, suggesting that all IL18BPs use a conserved inhibitory mechanism by blocking a putative receptor

  5. Characterization of the yam tuber storage proteins from Dioscorea batatas exhibiting unique lectin activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaidamashvili, Mariam; Ohizumi, Yuki; Iijima, Shinichiro; Takayama, Tomo; Ogawa, Tomohisa; Muramoto, Koji

    2004-06-18

    anhydrase, amylase, or trypsin inhibitor activity. These results show that two of the four major proteins isolated from the yam tubers D. batatas have unique lectin activities.

  6. Evolved Lactococcus lactis Strains for Enhanced Expression of Recombinant Membrane Proteins

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martinez Linares, Daniel; Geertsma, Eric R.; Poolman, Bert

    2010-01-01

    The production of complex multidomain (membrane) proteins is a major hurdle in structural genomics and a generic approach for optimizing membrane protein expression is still lacking. We have devised a selection method to isolate mutant strains with improved functional expression of recombinant

  7. The NBS-LRR architectures of plant R-proteins and metazoan NLRs evolved in independent events.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urbach, Jonathan M; Ausubel, Frederick M

    2017-01-31

    There are intriguing parallels between plants and animals, with respect to the structures of their innate immune receptors, that suggest universal principles of innate immunity. The cytosolic nucleotide binding site-leucine rich repeat (NBS-LRR) resistance proteins of plants (R-proteins) and the so-called NOD-like receptors of animals (NLRs) share a domain architecture that includes a STAND (signal transduction ATPases with numerous domains) family NTPase followed by a series of LRRs, suggesting inheritance from a common ancestor with that architecture. Focusing on the STAND NTPases of plant R-proteins, animal NLRs, and their homologs that represent the NB-ARC (nucleotide-binding adaptor shared by APAF-1, certain R gene products and CED-4) and NACHT (named for NAIP, CIIA, HET-E, and TEP1) subfamilies of the STAND NTPases, we analyzed the phylogenetic distribution of the NBS-LRR domain architecture, used maximum-likelihood methods to infer a phylogeny of the NTPase domains of R-proteins, and reconstructed the domain structure of the protein containing the common ancestor of the STAND NTPase domain of R-proteins and NLRs. Our analyses reject monophyly of plant R-proteins and NLRs and suggest that the protein containing the last common ancestor of the STAND NTPases of plant R-proteins and animal NLRs (and, by extension, all NB-ARC and NACHT domains) possessed a domain structure that included a STAND NTPase paired with a series of tetratricopeptide repeats. These analyses reject the hypothesis that the domain architecture of R-proteins and NLRs was inherited from a common ancestor and instead suggest the domain architecture evolved at least twice. It remains unclear whether the NBS-LRR architectures were innovations of plants and animals themselves or were acquired by one or both lineages through horizontal gene transfer.

  8. Cell Surface Properties of Lactococcus lactis Reveal Milk Protein Binding Specifically Evolved in Dairy Isolates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariya Tarazanova

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Surface properties of bacteria are determined by the molecular composition of the cell wall and they are important for interactions of cells with their environment. Well-known examples of bacterial interactions with surfaces are biofilm formation and the fermentation of solid materials like food and feed. Lactococcus lactis is broadly used for the fermentation of cheese and buttermilk and it is primarily isolated from either plant material or the dairy environment. In this study, we characterized surface hydrophobicity, charge, emulsification properties, and the attachment to milk proteins of 55 L. lactis strains in stationary and exponential growth phases. The attachment to milk protein was assessed through a newly developed flow cytometry-based protocol. Besides finding a high degree of biodiversity, phenotype-genotype matching allowed the identification of candidate genes involved in the modification of the cell surface. Overexpression and gene deletion analysis allowed to verify the predictions for three identified proteins that altered surface hydrophobicity and attachment of milk proteins. The data also showed that lactococci isolated from a dairy environment bind higher amounts of milk proteins when compared to plant isolates. It remains to be determined whether the alteration of surface properties also has potential to alter starter culture functionalities.

  9. Cell Surface Properties of Lactococcus lactis Reveal Milk Protein Binding Specifically Evolved in Dairy Isolates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarazanova, Mariya; Huppertz, Thom; Beerthuyzen, Marke; van Schalkwijk, Saskia; Janssen, Patrick; Wels, Michiel; Kok, Jan; Bachmann, Herwig

    2017-01-01

    Surface properties of bacteria are determined by the molecular composition of the cell wall and they are important for interactions of cells with their environment. Well-known examples of bacterial interactions with surfaces are biofilm formation and the fermentation of solid materials like food and feed. Lactococcus lactis is broadly used for the fermentation of cheese and buttermilk and it is primarily isolated from either plant material or the dairy environment. In this study, we characterized surface hydrophobicity, charge, emulsification properties, and the attachment to milk proteins of 55 L. lactis strains in stationary and exponential growth phases. The attachment to milk protein was assessed through a newly developed flow cytometry-based protocol. Besides finding a high degree of biodiversity, phenotype-genotype matching allowed the identification of candidate genes involved in the modification of the cell surface. Overexpression and gene deletion analysis allowed to verify the predictions for three identified proteins that altered surface hydrophobicity and attachment of milk proteins. The data also showed that lactococci isolated from a dairy environment bind higher amounts of milk proteins when compared to plant isolates. It remains to be determined whether the alteration of surface properties also has potential to alter starter culture functionalities. PMID:28936202

  10. A Plastid Protein That Evolved from Ubiquitin and Is Required for Apicoplast Protein Import in Toxoplasma gondii

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Justin D. Fellows

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Apicomplexan parasites cause a variety of important infectious diseases, including malaria, toxoplasma encephalitis, and severe diarrhea due to Cryptosporidium. Most apicomplexans depend on an organelle called the apicoplast which is derived from a red algal endosymbiont. The apicoplast is essential for the parasite as the compartment of fatty acid, heme, and isoprenoid biosynthesis. The majority of the approximate 500 apicoplast proteins are nucleus encoded and have to be imported across the four membranes that surround the apicoplast. Import across the second outermost membrane of the apicoplast, the periplastid membrane, depends on an apicoplast-specific endoplasmic reticulum-associated protein degradation (ERAD complex and on enzymes of the associated ubiquitination cascade. However, identification of an apicoplast ubiquitin associated with this machinery has long been elusive. Here we identify a plastid ubiquitin-like protein (PUBL, an apicoplast protein that is derived from a ubiquitin ancestor but that has significantly changed in its primary sequence. PUBL is distinct from known ubiquitin-like proteins, and phylogenomic analyses suggest a clade specific to apicomplexans. We demonstrate that PUBL and the AAA ATPase CDC48AP both act to translocate apicoplast proteins across the periplastid membrane during protein import. Conditional null mutants and genetic complementation show that both proteins are critical for this process and for parasite survival. PUBL residues homologous to those that are required for ubiquitin conjugation onto target proteins are essential for this function, while those required for polyubiquitination and preprotein processing are dispensable. Our experiments provide a mechanistic understanding of the molecular machinery that drives protein import across the membranes of the apicoplast.

  11. Avian papillomaviruses: the parrot Psittacus erithacus papillomavirus (PePV genome has a unique organization of the early protein region and is phylogenetically related to the chaffinch papillomavirus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jenson A Bennett

    2002-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background An avian papillomavirus genome has been cloned from a cutaneous exophytic papilloma from an African grey parrot (Psittacus erithacus. The nucleotide sequence, genome organization, and phylogenetic position of the Psittacus erithacus papillomavirus (PePV were determined. This PePV sequence represents the first complete avian papillomavirus genome defined. Results The PePV genome (7304 basepairs differs from other papillomaviruses, in that it has a unique organization of the early protein region lacking classical E6 and E7 open reading frames. Phylogenetic comparison of the PePV sequence with partial E1 and L1 sequences of the chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs papillomavirus (FPV reveals that these two avian papillomaviruses form a monophyletic cluster with a common branch that originates near the unresolved center of the papillomavirus evolutionary tree. Conclusions The PePV genome has a unique layout of the early protein region which represents a novel prototypic genomic organization for avian papillomaviruses. The close relationship between PePV and FPV, and between their Psittaciformes and Passeriformes hosts, supports the hypothesis that papillomaviruses have co-evolved and speciated together with their host species throughout evolution.

  12. Evolving Transcription Factor Binding Site Models From Protein Binding Microarray Data

    KAUST Repository

    Wong, Ka-Chun; Peng, Chengbin; Li, Yue

    2016-01-01

    Protein binding microarray (PBM) is a high-throughput platform that can measure the DNA binding preference of a protein in a comprehensive and unbiased manner. In this paper, we describe the PBM motif model building problem. We apply several evolutionary computation methods and compare their performance with the interior point method, demonstrating their performance advantages. In addition, given the PBM domain knowledge, we propose and describe a novel method called kmerGA which makes domain-specific assumptions to exploit PBM data properties to build more accurate models than the other models built. The effectiveness and robustness of kmerGA is supported by comprehensive performance benchmarking on more than 200 datasets, time complexity analysis, convergence analysis, parameter analysis, and case studies. To demonstrate its utility further, kmerGA is applied to two real world applications: 1) PBM rotation testing and 2) ChIP-Seq peak sequence prediction. The results support the biological relevance of the models learned by kmerGA, and thus its real world applicability.

  13. Evolving Transcription Factor Binding Site Models From Protein Binding Microarray Data

    KAUST Repository

    Wong, Ka-Chun

    2016-02-02

    Protein binding microarray (PBM) is a high-throughput platform that can measure the DNA binding preference of a protein in a comprehensive and unbiased manner. In this paper, we describe the PBM motif model building problem. We apply several evolutionary computation methods and compare their performance with the interior point method, demonstrating their performance advantages. In addition, given the PBM domain knowledge, we propose and describe a novel method called kmerGA which makes domain-specific assumptions to exploit PBM data properties to build more accurate models than the other models built. The effectiveness and robustness of kmerGA is supported by comprehensive performance benchmarking on more than 200 datasets, time complexity analysis, convergence analysis, parameter analysis, and case studies. To demonstrate its utility further, kmerGA is applied to two real world applications: 1) PBM rotation testing and 2) ChIP-Seq peak sequence prediction. The results support the biological relevance of the models learned by kmerGA, and thus its real world applicability.

  14. Field-Evolved Resistance in Corn Earworm to Cry Proteins Expressed by Transgenic Sweet Corn

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dively, Galen P.; Finkenbinder, Chad

    2016-01-01

    sweet corn provide strong evidence of field-evolved resistance in H. zea populations to multiple Cry toxins. The high adoption rate of Bt field corn and cotton, along with the moderate dose expression of Cry1Ab and related Cry toxins in these crops, and decreasing refuge compliance probably contributed to the evolution of resistance. Our results have important implications for resistance monitoring, refuge requirements and other regulatory policies, cross-resistance issues, and the sustainability of the pyramided Bt technology. PMID:28036388

  15. Screening and expression of selected taxonomically conserved and unique hypothetical proteins in Burkholderia pseudomallei K96243

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akhir, Nor Azurah Mat; Nadzirin, Nurul; Mohamed, Rahmah; Firdaus-Raih, Mohd

    2015-09-01

    Hypothetical proteins of bacterial pathogens represent a large numbers of novel biological mechanisms which could belong to essential pathways in the bacteria. They lack functional characterizations mainly due to the inability of sequence homology based methods to detect functional relationships in the absence of detectable sequence similarity. The dataset derived from this study showed 550 candidates conserved in genomes that has pathogenicity information and only present in the Burkholderiales order. The dataset has been narrowed down to taxonomic clusters. Ten proteins were selected for ORF amplification, seven of them were successfully amplified, and only four proteins were successfully expressed. These proteins will be great candidates in determining the true function via structural biology.

  16. Participatory role of zinc in structural and functional characterization of bioremediase: a unique thermostable microbial silica leaching protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowdhury, Trinath; Sarkar, Manas; Chaudhuri, Biswadeep; Chattopadhyay, Brajadulal; Halder, Umesh Chandra

    2015-07-01

    A unique protein, bioremediase (UniProt Knowledgebase Accession No.: P86277), isolated from a hot spring bacterium BKH1 (GenBank Accession No.: FJ177512), has shown to exhibit silica leaching activity when incorporated to prepare bio-concrete material. Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization mass spectrometry analysis suggests that bioremediase is 78% homologous to bovine carbonic anhydrase II though it does not exhibit carbonic anhydrase-like activity. Bioinformatics study is performed for understanding the various physical and chemical parameters of the protein which predicts the involvement of zinc encircled by three histidine residues (His94, His96 and His119) at the active site of the protein. Isothermal titration calorimetric-based thermodynamic study on diethyl pyrocarbonate-modified protein recognizes the presence of Zn(2+) in the enzyme moiety. Exothermic to endothermic transition as observed during titration of the protein with Zn(2+) discloses that there are at least two binding sites for zinc within the protein moiety. Addition of Zn(2+) regains the activity of EDTA chelated bioremediase confirming the presence of extra binding site of Zn(2+) in the protein moiety. Revival of folding pattern of completely unfolded urea-treated protein by Zn(2+) explains the participatory role of zinc in structural stability of the protein. Restoration of the λ max in intrinsic fluorescence emission study of the urea-treated protein by Zn(2+) similarly confirms the involvement of Zn in the refolding of the protein. The utility of bioremediase for silica nanoparticles preparation is observed by field emission scanning electron microscopy.

  17. Genome, secretome and glucose transport highlight unique features of the protein production host Pichia pastoris

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mattanovich Diethard

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Pichia pastoris is widely used as a production platform for heterologous proteins and model organism for organelle proliferation. Without a published genome sequence available, strain and process development relied mainly on analogies to other, well studied yeasts like Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Results To investigate specific features of growth and protein secretion, we have sequenced the 9.4 Mb genome of the type strain DSMZ 70382 and analyzed the secretome and the sugar transporters. The computationally predicted secretome consists of 88 ORFs. When grown on glucose, only 20 proteins were actually secreted at detectable levels. These data highlight one major feature of P. pastoris, namely the low contamination of heterologous proteins with host cell protein, when applying glucose based expression systems. Putative sugar transporters were identified and compared to those of related yeast species. The genome comprises 2 homologs to S. cerevisiae low affinity transporters and 2 to high affinity transporters of other Crabtree negative yeasts. Contrary to other yeasts, P. pastoris possesses 4 H+/glycerol transporters. Conclusion This work highlights significant advantages of using the P. pastoris system with glucose based expression and fermentation strategies. As only few proteins and no proteases are actually secreted on glucose, it becomes evident that cell lysis is the relevant cause of proteolytic degradation of secreted proteins. The endowment with hexose transporters, dominantly of the high affinity type, limits glucose uptake rates and thus overflow metabolism as observed in S. cerevisiae. The presence of 4 genes for glycerol transporters explains the high specific growth rates on this substrate and underlines the suitability of a glycerol/glucose based fermentation strategy. Furthermore, we present an open access web based genome browser http://www.pichiagenome.org.

  18. The Ever-Evolving Concept of the Gene: The Use of RNA/Protein Experimental Techniques to Understand Genome Functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Cipriano

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The completion of the human genome sequence together with advances in sequencing technologies have shifted the paradigm of the genome, as composed of discrete and hereditable coding entities, and have shown the abundance of functional noncoding DNA. This part of the genome, previously dismissed as “junk” DNA, increases proportionally with organismal complexity and contributes to gene regulation beyond the boundaries of known protein-coding genes. Different classes of functionally relevant nonprotein-coding RNAs are transcribed from noncoding DNA sequences. Among them are the long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs, which are thought to participate in the basal regulation of protein-coding genes at both transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. Although knowledge of this field is still limited, the ability of lncRNAs to localize in different cellular compartments, to fold into specific secondary structures and to interact with different molecules (RNA or proteins endows them with multiple regulatory mechanisms. It is becoming evident that lncRNAs may play a crucial role in most biological processes such as the control of development, differentiation and cell growth. This review places the evolution of the concept of the gene in its historical context, from Darwin's hypothetical mechanism of heredity to the post-genomic era. We discuss how the original idea of protein-coding genes as unique determinants of phenotypic traits has been reconsidered in light of the existence of noncoding RNAs. We summarize the technological developments which have been made in the genome-wide identification and study of lncRNAs and emphasize the methodologies that have aided our understanding of the complexity of lncRNA-protein interactions in recent years.

  19. Discrete and structurally unique proteins (tāpirins) mediate attachment of extremely thermophilic Caldicellulosiruptor species to cellulose.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumer-Schuette, Sara E; Alahuhta, Markus; Conway, Jonathan M; Lee, Laura L; Zurawski, Jeffrey V; Giannone, Richard J; Hettich, Robert L; Lunin, Vladimir V; Himmel, Michael E; Kelly, Robert M

    2015-04-24

    A variety of catalytic and noncatalytic protein domains are deployed by select microorganisms to deconstruct lignocellulose. These extracellular proteins are used to attach to, modify, and hydrolyze the complex polysaccharides present in plant cell walls. Cellulolytic enzymes, often containing carbohydrate-binding modules, are key to this process; however, these enzymes are not solely responsible for attachment. Few mechanisms of attachment have been discovered among bacteria that do not form large polypeptide structures, called cellulosomes, to deconstruct biomass. In this study, bioinformatics and proteomics analyses identified unique, discrete, hypothetical proteins ("tāpirins," origin from Māori: to join), not directly associated with cellulases, that mediate attachment to cellulose by species in the noncellulosomal, extremely thermophilic bacterial genus Caldicellulosiruptor. Two tāpirin genes are located directly downstream of a type IV pilus operon in strongly cellulolytic members of the genus, whereas homologs are absent from the weakly cellulolytic Caldicellulosiruptor species. Based on their amino acid sequence, tāpirins are specific to these extreme thermophiles. Tāpirins are also unusual in that they share no detectable protein domain signatures with known polysaccharide-binding proteins. Adsorption isotherm and trans vivo analyses demonstrated the carbohydrate-binding module-like affinity of the tāpirins for cellulose. Crystallization of a cellulose-binding truncation from one tāpirin indicated that these proteins form a long β-helix core with a shielded hydrophobic face. Furthermore, they are structurally unique and define a new class of polysaccharide adhesins. Strongly cellulolytic Caldicellulosiruptor species employ tāpirins to complement substrate-binding proteins from the ATP-binding cassette transporters and multidomain extracellular and S-layer-associated glycoside hydrolases to process the carbohydrate content of lignocellulose.

  20. The unique architecture and function of cellulose-interacting proteins in oomycetes revealed by genomic and structural analyses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larroque Mathieu

    2012-11-01

    provides insight into the evolution and biological roles of CBM1-containing proteins from oomycetes. We show that while CBM1s from fungi and oomycetes are similar, they team up with different protein domains, either in proteins implicated in the degradation of plant cell wall components in the case of fungi or in proteins involved in adhesion to polysaccharidic substrates in the case of oomycetes. This work highlighted the unique role and evolution of CBM1 proteins in oomycete among the Stramenopile lineage.

  1. Reaction of protein and carbohydrates with EDC for making unique biomaterials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prior research from this laboratory has demonstrated the feasibility of using chemical and enzymatic treatments on protein and carbohydrate waste products for the purpose of making fillers to enhance the properties of leather. These treatments (microbial transglutaminase, genipin, and polyphenols i...

  2. Integrin-linked kinase: a Scaffold protein unique among its ilk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dagnino, Lina

    2011-06-01

    Integrin-linked kinase (ILK) is a scaffolding protein with central roles in tissue development and homeostasis. Much debate has focused on whether ILK is a bona fide or a pseudo- kinase. This aspect of ILK function has been complicated by the large volumes of conflicting observations obtained from a wide variety of experimental approaches, from in vitro models, to analyses in invertebrates and in mammals. Key findings in support or against the notion that ILK is catalytically active are summarized. The importance of ILK as an adaptor protein is well established, and defining its role as a signaling hub will be the next key step to understand its distinct biological roles across tissues and species.

  3. Comparative proteomics of cucurbit phloem indicates both unique and shared sets of proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez-Cobollo, Rosa M; Filippis, Ioannis; Bennett, Mark H; Turnbull, Colin G N

    2016-11-01

    Cucurbits are well-studied models for phloem biology but unusually possess both fascicular phloem (FP) within vascular bundles and additional extrafascicular phloem (EFP). Although the functional differences between the two systems are not yet clear, sugar analysis and limited protein profiling have established that FP and EFP have divergent compositions. Here we report a detailed comparative proteomics study of FP and EFP in two cucurbits, pumpkin and cucumber. We re-examined the sites of exudation by video microscopy, and confirmed that in both species, the spontaneous exudate following tissue cutting derives almost exclusively from EFP. Comparative gel electrophoresis and mass spectrometry-based proteomics of exudates, sieve element contents and microdissected stem tissues established that EFP and FP profiles are highly dissimilar, and that there are also species differences. Searches against cucurbit databases enabled identification of more than 300 FP proteins from each species. Few of the detected proteins (about 10%) were shared between the sieve element contents of FP and EFP, and enriched Gene Ontology categories also differed. To explore quantitative differences in the proteomes, we developed multiple reaction monitoring methods for cucumber proteins that are representative markers for FP or EFP and assessed exudate composition at different times after tissue cutting. Based on failure to detect FP markers in exudate samples, we conclude that FP is blocked very rapidly and therefore makes a minimal contribution to the exudates. Overall, the highly divergent contents of FP and EFP indicate that they are substantially independent vascular compartments. © 2016 The Authors The Plant Journal © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  4. Selenoprotein P: an extracellular protein with unique physical characteristics and a role in selenium homeostasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burk, Raymond F; Hill, Kristina E

    2005-01-01

    Selenoprotein P is an abundant extracellular glycoprotein that is rich in selenocysteine. It has two domains with respect to selenium content. The N-terminal domain of the rat protein contains one selenocysteine residue in a UxxC redox motif. This domain also has a pH-sensitive heparin-binding site and two histidine-rich amino acid stretches. The smaller C-terminal domain contains nine selenocysteine and ten cysteine residues. Four isoforms of selenoprotein P are present in rat plasma. They share the same N terminus and amino acid sequence. One isoform is full length and the three others terminate at the positions of the second, third, and seventh selenocysteine residues. Selenoprotein P turns over rapidly in rat plasma with the consequence that approximately 25% of the amount of whole-body selenium passes through it each day. Evidence supports functions of the protein in selenium homeostasis and oxidant defense. Selenoprotein P knockout mice have very low selenium concentrations in the brain, the testis, and the fetus, with severe pathophysiological consequences in each tissue. In addition, those mice waste moderate amounts of selenium in the urine. Selenoprotein P binds to endothelial cells in the rat, and plasma levels of the protein correlate with prevention of diquat-induced lipid peroxidation and hepatic endothelial cell injury. The mechanisms of these apparent functions remain speculative and much work on the mechanism of selenoprotein P function lies ahead. Measurement of selenoprotein P in human plasma has shown that it is depressed by selenium deficiency and by cirrhosis. Selenium supplementation of selenium-deficient human subjects showed that glutathione peroxidase activity was optimized before selenoprotein P concentration was optimized, indicating that plasma selenoprotein P is the better index of human selenium nutritional status.

  5. Differential role of molten globule and protein folding in distinguishing unique features of botulinum neurotoxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Raj; Kukreja, Roshan V; Cai, Shuowei; Singh, Bal R

    2014-06-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are proteins of great interest not only because of their extreme toxicity but also paradoxically for their therapeutic applications. All the known serotypes (A-G) have varying degrees of longevity and potency inside the neuronal cell. Differential chemical modifications such as phosphorylation and ubiquitination have been suggested as possible mechanisms for their longevity, but the molecular basis of the longevity remains unclear. Since the endopeptidase domain (light chain; LC) of toxin apparently survives inside the neuronal cells for months, it is important to examine the structural features of this domain to understand its resistance to intracellular degradation. Published crystal structures (both botulinum neurotoxins and endopeptidase domain) have not provided adequate explanation for the intracellular longevity of the domain. Structural features obtained from spectroscopic analysis of LCA and LCB were similar, and a PRIME (PReImminent Molten Globule Enzyme) conformation appears to be responsible for their optimal enzymatic activity at 37°C. LCE, on the other hand, was although optimally active at 37°C, but its active conformation differed from the PRIME conformation of LCA and LCB. This study establishes and confirms our earlier finding that an optimally active conformation of these proteins in the form of PRIME exists for the most poisonous poison, botulinum neurotoxin. There are substantial variations in the structural and functional characteristics of these active molten globule related structures among the three BoNT endopeptidases examined. These differential conformations of LCs are important in understanding the fundamental structural features of proteins, and their possible connection to intracellular longevity could provide significant clues for devising new countermeasures and effective therapeutics. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Expression of three topologically distinct membrane proteins elicits unique stress response pathways in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buck, Teresa M; Jordan, Rick; Lyons-Weiler, James; Adelman, Joshua L; Needham, Patrick G; Kleyman, Thomas R; Brodsky, Jeffrey L

    2015-06-01

    Misfolded membrane proteins are retained in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and are subject to ER-associated degradation, which clears the secretory pathway of potentially toxic species. While the transcriptional response to environmental stressors has been extensively studied, limited data exist describing the cellular response to misfolded membrane proteins. To this end, we expressed and then compared the transcriptional profiles elicited by the synthesis of three ER retained, misfolded ion channels: The α-subunit of the epithelial sodium channel, ENaC, the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator, CFTR, and an inwardly rectifying potassium channel, Kir2.1, which vary in their mass, membrane topologies, and quaternary structures. To examine transcriptional profiles in a null background, the proteins were expressed in yeast, which was previously used to examine the degradation requirements for each substrate. Surprisingly, the proteins failed to induce a canonical unfolded protein response or heat shock response, although messages encoding several cytosolic and ER lumenal protein folding factors rose when αENaC or CFTR was expressed. In contrast, the levels of these genes were unaltered by Kir2.1 expression; instead, the yeast iron regulon was activated. Nevertheless, a significant number of genes that respond to various environmental stressors were upregulated by all three substrates, and compared with previous microarray data we deduced the existence of a group of genes that reflect a novel misfolded membrane protein response. These data indicate that aberrant proteins in the ER elicit profound yet unique cellular responses. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  7. Codon-triplet context unveils unique features of the Candida albicans protein coding genome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliveira José L

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The evolutionary forces that determine the arrangement of synonymous codons within open reading frames and fine tune mRNA translation efficiency are not yet understood. In order to tackle this question we have carried out a large scale study of codon-triplet contexts in 11 fungal species to unravel associations or relationships between codons present at the ribosome A-, P- and E-sites during each decoding cycle. Results Our analysis unveiled high bias within the context of codon-triplets, in particular strong preference for triplets of identical codons. We have also identified a surprisingly large number of codon-triplet combinations that vanished from fungal ORFeomes. Candida albicans exacerbated these features, showed an unbalanced tRNA population for decoding its pool of codons and used near-cognate decoding for a large set of codons, suggesting that unique evolutionary forces shaped the evolution of its ORFeome. Conclusion We have developed bioinformatics tools for large-scale analysis of codon-triplet contexts. These algorithms identified codon-triplets context biases, allowed for large scale comparative codon-triplet analysis, and identified rules governing codon-triplet context. They could also detect alterations to the standard genetic code.

  8. O'nyong nyong virus molecular determinants of unique vector specificity reside in non-structural protein 3.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kali D Saxton-Shaw

    Full Text Available O'nyong nyong virus (ONNV and Chikungunya virus (CHIKV are two closely related alphaviruses with very different infection patterns in the mosquito, Anopheles gambiae. ONNV is the only alphavirus transmitted by anopheline mosquitoes, but specific molecular determinants of infection of this unique vector specificity remain unidentified. Fifteen distinct chimeric viruses were constructed to evaluate both structural and non-structural regions of the genome and infection patterns were determined through artificial infectious feeds in An. gambiae with each of these chimeras. Only one region, non-structural protein 3 (nsP3, was sufficient to up-regulate infection to rates similar to those seen with parental ONNV. When ONNV non-structural protein 3 (nsP3 replaced nsP3 from CHIKV virus in one of the chimeric viruses, infection rates in An. gambiae went from 0% to 63.5%. No other single gene or viral region addition was able to restore infection rates. Thus, we have shown that a non-structural genome element involved in viral replication is a major element involved in ONNV's unique vector specificity.

  9. Salivary gland proteome analysis reveals modulation of anopheline unique proteins in insensitive acetylcholinesterase resistant Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylvie Cornelie

    Full Text Available Insensitive acetylcholinesterase resistance due to a mutation in the acetylcholinesterase (ace encoding ace-1 gene confers cross-resistance to organophosphate and carbamate insecticides in Anopheles gambiae populations from Central and West Africa. This mutation is associated with a strong genetic cost revealed through alterations of some life history traits but little is known about the physiological and behavioural changes in insects bearing the ace-1(R allele. Comparative analysis of the salivary gland contents between An. gambiae susceptible and ace-1(R resistant strains was carried out to charaterize factors that could be involved in modifications of blood meal process, trophic behaviour or pathogen interaction in the insecticide-resistant mosquitoes. Differential analysis of the salivary gland protein profiles revealed differences in abundance for several proteins, two of them showing major differences between the two strains. These two proteins identified as saglin and TRIO are salivary gland-1 related proteins, a family unique to anopheline mosquitoes, one of them playing a crucial role in salivary gland invasion by Plasmodium falciparum sporozoites. Differential expression of two other proteins previously identified in the Anopheles sialome was also observed. The differentially regulated proteins are involved in pathogen invasion, blood feeding process, and protection against oxidation, relevant steps in the outcome of malaria infection. Further functional studies and insect behaviour experiments would confirm the impact of the modification of the sialome composition on blood feeding and pathogen transmission abilities of the resistant mosquitoes. The data supports the hypothesis of alterations linked to insecticide resistance in the biology of the primary vector of human malaria in Africa.

  10. NCYM, a Cis-antisense gene of MYCN, encodes a de novo evolved protein that inhibits GSK3β resulting in the stabilization of MYCN in human neuroblastomas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yusuke Suenaga

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The rearrangement of pre-existing genes has long been thought of as the major mode of new gene generation. Recently, de novo gene birth from non-genic DNA was found to be an alternative mechanism to generate novel protein-coding genes. However, its functional role in human disease remains largely unknown. Here we show that NCYM, a cis-antisense gene of the MYCN oncogene, initially thought to be a large non-coding RNA, encodes a de novo evolved protein regulating the pathogenesis of human cancers, particularly neuroblastoma. The NCYM gene is evolutionally conserved only in the taxonomic group containing humans and chimpanzees. In primary human neuroblastomas, NCYM is 100% co-amplified and co-expressed with MYCN, and NCYM mRNA expression is associated with poor clinical outcome. MYCN directly transactivates both NCYM and MYCN mRNA, whereas NCYM stabilizes MYCN protein by inhibiting the activity of GSK3β, a kinase that promotes MYCN degradation. In contrast to MYCN transgenic mice, neuroblastomas in MYCN/NCYM double transgenic mice were frequently accompanied by distant metastases, behavior reminiscent of human neuroblastomas with MYCN amplification. The NCYM protein also interacts with GSK3β, thereby stabilizing the MYCN protein in the tumors of the MYCN/NCYM double transgenic mice. Thus, these results suggest that GSK3β inhibition by NCYM stabilizes the MYCN protein both in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, the survival of MYCN transgenic mice bearing neuroblastoma was improved by treatment with NVP-BEZ235, a dual PI3K/mTOR inhibitor shown to destabilize MYCN via GSK3β activation. In contrast, tumors caused in MYCN/NCYM double transgenic mice showed chemo-resistance to the drug. Collectively, our results show that NCYM is the first de novo evolved protein known to act as an oncopromoting factor in human cancer, and suggest that de novo evolved proteins may functionally characterize human disease.

  11. The visualCMAT: A web-server to select and interpret correlated mutations/co-evolving residues in protein families.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suplatov, Dmitry; Sharapova, Yana; Timonina, Daria; Kopylov, Kirill; Švedas, Vytas

    2018-04-01

    The visualCMAT web-server was designed to assist experimental research in the fields of protein/enzyme biochemistry, protein engineering, and drug discovery by providing an intuitive and easy-to-use interface to the analysis of correlated mutations/co-evolving residues. Sequence and structural information describing homologous proteins are used to predict correlated substitutions by the Mutual information-based CMAT approach, classify them into spatially close co-evolving pairs, which either form a direct physical contact or interact with the same ligand (e.g. a substrate or a crystallographic water molecule), and long-range correlations, annotate and rank binding sites on the protein surface by the presence of statistically significant co-evolving positions. The results of the visualCMAT are organized for a convenient visual analysis and can be downloaded to a local computer as a content-rich all-in-one PyMol session file with multiple layers of annotation corresponding to bioinformatic, statistical and structural analyses of the predicted co-evolution, or further studied online using the built-in interactive analysis tools. The online interactivity is implemented in HTML5 and therefore neither plugins nor Java are required. The visualCMAT web-server is integrated with the Mustguseal web-server capable of constructing large structure-guided sequence alignments of protein families and superfamilies using all available information about their structures and sequences in public databases. The visualCMAT web-server can be used to understand the relationship between structure and function in proteins, implemented at selecting hotspots and compensatory mutations for rational design and directed evolution experiments to produce novel enzymes with improved properties, and employed at studying the mechanism of selective ligand's binding and allosteric communication between topologically independent sites in protein structures. The web-server is freely available at https

  12. A Unique Immunofluorescence Protocol to Detect Protein Expression in Vascular Tissues: Tacking a Long Standing Pathological Hitch

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Puneet GANDHI

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: Autofluorescence induced interference is one of the major drawbacks in immunofluorescence analysis of formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues, as it decreases the signal-to-noise ratio of specific labeling. Apart from aldehyde-fixation induced artifacts; collagen and elastin, red blood cells and endogenous fluorescent pigment lipofuscin are prime sources of autofluorescence in vascular and aging tissues. We describe herein, an optimized indirect-immunofluorescence method for archival formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues tissues and cryo sections, using a combination of 3-reagents in a specific order, to achieve optimal fluorescence signals and imaging. Material and Method: Human telomerase reverse transcriptase, a protein implicated as a proliferation marker, was chosen relevant to its expression in solid tumors along with 3 other intracellular proteins exhibiting nuclear and/or cytoplasmic expression. Staining was performed on 10 glioma tissue sections along with 5 of their cryo sections, 5 sections each of hepatocellular, lung, papillary-thyroid and renal cell carcinoma, with 10 non-malignant brain tissue samples serving as control. Specimens were imaged using epifluorescence microscopy, followed by software-based quantification of fluorescence signals for statistical analysis and validation. Results: We observed that the combined application of sodium-borohydride followed by crystal violet before antigen retrieval and a Sudan black B treatment after secondary antibody application proved to be most efficacious for masking autofluorescence/non-specific background in vascular tissues. Conclusion: This unique trio-methodology provides quantifiable observations with maximized fluorescence signal intensity of the target protein for longer retention time of the signal even after prolonged storage. The results can be extrapolated to other human tissues for different protein targets.

  13. MiAMP1, a novel protein from macadamia integrifolia adopts a greek key β-barrel fold unique amongst plant antimicrobial proteins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McManus, A.M.; Nielsen, K.J.; Craik, D.J.; Marcus, J.P.; Harrison, S.J.; Green, J.L.; Manners, J.M.

    1999-01-01

    Full text: MiAMP1 is a recently discovered 76 amino acid, highly basic protein from the nut kernel of Macadamia integrifolia which possesses no sequence homology to any known protein. A study of its antimicrobial activity revealed that it inhibited the growth of several microbial plant pathogens in vitro but had no effect on mammalian or plant cells. For these reasons, MiAMP1 is considered to be a potentially useful tool for the genetic engineering of disease resistance in transgenic crop plants and for the design of new fungicides. The three-dimensional structure of MiAMP1 was determined through homonuclear and heteronuclear ( 15 N) 2D NMR spectroscopy and subsequent simulated annealing calculations. MiAMP1 is made up of eight β-strands which are arranged in two Greek key motifs. These Greek key motifs associate to form a Greek key β-barrel. This structure is unique amongst plant antimicrobial proteins and forms a new class which we term the β-Barrelins. Interestingly, the structure of MiAMP1 bears remarkable similarity to a yeast killer toxin from Williopsis mrakii. The structural similarity of MiAMP1 and WmKT, which originate from plant and fungal phyla respectively, may reflect a similar mode of action

  14. Plasmodium falciparum spermidine synthase inhibition results in unique perturbation-specific effects observed on transcript, protein and metabolite levels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louw Abraham I

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium falciparum, the causative agent of severe human malaria, has evolved to become resistant to previously successful antimalarial chemotherapies, most notably chloroquine and the antifolates. The prevalence of resistant strains has necessitated the discovery and development of new chemical entities with novel modes-of-action. Although much effort has been invested in the creation of analogues based on existing drugs and the screening of chemical and natural compound libraries, a crucial shortcoming in current Plasmodial drug discovery efforts remains the lack of an extensive set of novel, validated drug targets. A requirement of these targets (or the pathways in which they function is that they prove essential for parasite survival. The polyamine biosynthetic pathway, responsible for the metabolism of highly abundant amines crucial for parasite growth, proliferation and differentiation, is currently under investigation as an antimalarial target. Chemotherapeutic strategies targeting this pathway have been successfully utilized for the treatment of Trypanosomes causing West African sleeping sickness. In order to further evaluate polyamine depletion as possible antimalarial intervention, the consequences of inhibiting P. falciparum spermidine synthase (PfSpdSyn were examined on a morphological, transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolic level. Results Morphological analysis of P. falciparum 3D7 following application of the PfSpdSyn inhibitor cyclohexylamine confirmed that parasite development was completely arrested at the early trophozoite stage. This is in contrast to untreated parasites which progressed to late trophozoites at comparable time points. Global gene expression analyses confirmed a transcriptional arrest in the parasite. Several of the differentially expressed genes mapped to the polyamine biosynthetic and associated metabolic pathways. Differential expression of corresponding parasite proteins involved in

  15. The unique fold and lability of the [2Fe-2S] clusters of NEET proteins mediate their key functions in health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karmi, Ola; Marjault, Henri-Baptiste; Pesce, Luca; Carloni, Paolo; Onuchic, Jose' N; Jennings, Patricia A; Mittler, Ron; Nechushtai, Rachel

    2018-02-12

    NEET proteins comprise a new class of [2Fe-2S] cluster proteins. In human, three genes encode for NEET proteins: cisd1 encodes mitoNEET (mNT), cisd2 encodes the Nutrient-deprivation autophagy factor-1 (NAF-1) and cisd3 encodes MiNT (Miner2). These recently discovered proteins play key roles in many processes related to normal metabolism and disease. Indeed, NEET proteins are involved in iron, Fe-S, and reactive oxygen homeostasis in cells and play an important role in regulating apoptosis and autophagy. mNT and NAF-1 are homodimeric and reside on the outer mitochondrial membrane. NAF-1 also resides in the membranes of the ER associated mitochondrial membranes (MAM) and the ER. MiNT is a monomer with distinct asymmetry in the molecular surfaces surrounding the clusters. Unlike its paralogs mNT and NAF-1, it resides within the mitochondria. NAF-1 and mNT share similar backbone folds to the plant homodimeric NEET protein (At-NEET), while MiNT's backbone fold resembles a bacterial MiNT protein. Despite the variation of amino acid composition among these proteins, all NEET proteins retained their unique CDGSH domain harboring their unique 3Cys:1His [2Fe-2S] cluster coordination through evolution. The coordinating exposed His was shown to convey the lability to the NEET proteins' [2Fe-2S] clusters. In this minireview, we discuss the NEET fold and its structural elements. Special attention is given to the unique lability of the NEETs' [2Fe-2S] cluster and the implication of the latter to the NEET proteins' cellular and systemic function in health and disease.

  16. Maintaining evolvability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crow, James F

    2008-12-01

    Although molecular methods, such as QTL mapping, have revealed a number of loci with large effects, it is still likely that the bulk of quantitative variability is due to multiple factors, each with small effect. Typically, these have a large additive component. Conventional wisdom argues that selection, natural or artificial, uses up additive variance and thus depletes its supply. Over time, the variance should be reduced, and at equilibrium be near zero. This is especially expected for fitness and traits highly correlated with it. Yet, populations typically have a great deal of additive variance, and do not seem to run out of genetic variability even after many generations of directional selection. Long-term selection experiments show that populations continue to retain seemingly undiminished additive variance despite large changes in the mean value. I propose that there are several reasons for this. (i) The environment is continually changing so that what was formerly most fit no longer is. (ii) There is an input of genetic variance from mutation, and sometimes from migration. (iii) As intermediate-frequency alleles increase in frequency towards one, producing less variance (as p --> 1, p(1 - p) --> 0), others that were originally near zero become more common and increase the variance. Thus, a roughly constant variance is maintained. (iv) There is always selection for fitness and for characters closely related to it. To the extent that the trait is heritable, later generations inherit a disproportionate number of genes acting additively on the trait, thus increasing genetic variance. For these reasons a selected population retains its ability to evolve. Of course, genes with large effect are also important. Conspicuous examples are the small number of loci that changed teosinte to maize, and major phylogenetic changes in the animal kingdom. The relative importance of these along with duplications, chromosome rearrangements, horizontal transmission and polyploidy

  17. An evolved ribosome-inactivating protein targets and kills human melanoma cells in vitro and in vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Green David E

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Few treatment options exist for patients with metastatic melanoma, resulting in poor prognosis. One standard treatment, dacarbazine (DTIC, shows low response rates ranging from 15 to 25 percent with an 8-month median survival time. The development of targeted therapeutics with novel mechanisms of action may improve patient outcome. Ribosome-inactivating proteins (RIPs such as Shiga-like Toxin 1 (SLT-1 represent powerful scaffolds for developing selective anticancer agents. Here we report the discovery and properties of a single chain ribosome-inactivating protein (scRIP derived from the cytotoxic A subunit of SLT-1 (SLT-1A, harboring the 7-amino acid peptide insertion IYSNKLM (termed SLT-1AIYSNKLM allowing the toxin variant to selectively target and kill human melanoma cells. Results SLT-1AIYSNKLM was able to kill 7 of 8 human melanoma cell lines. This scRIP binds to 518-A2 human melanoma cells with a dissociation constant of 18 nM, resulting in the blockage of protein synthesis and apoptosis in such cells. Biodistribution and imaging studies of radiolabeled SLT-1AIYSNKLM administered intravenously into SCID mice bearing a human melanoma xenograft indicate that SLT-1AIYSNKLM readily accumulates at the tumor site as opposed to non-target tissues. Furthermore, the co-administration of SLT-1AIYSNKLM with DTIC resulted in tumor regression and greatly increased survival in this mouse xenograft model in comparison to DTIC or SLT-1AIYSNKLM treatment alone (115 day median survival versus 46 and 47 days respectively; P values IYSNKLM is stable in serum and its intravenous administration resulted in modest immune responses following repeated injections in CD1 mice. Conclusions These results demonstrate that the evolution of a scRIP template can lead to the discovery of novel cancer cell-targeted compounds and in the case of SLT-1AIYSNKLM can specifically kill human melanoma cells in vitro and in vivo.

  18. BLAST screening of chlamydial genomes to identify signature proteins that are unique for the Chlamydiales, Chlamydiaceae, Chlamydophila and Chlamydia groups of species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gupta Radhey S

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Chlamydiae species are of much importance from a clinical viewpoint. Their diversity both in terms of their numbers as well as clinical involvement are presently believed to be significantly underestimated. The obligate intracellular nature of chlamydiae has also limited their genetic and biochemical studies. Thus, it is of importance to develop additional means for their identification and characterization. Results We have carried out analyses of available chlamydiae genomes to identify sets of unique proteins that are either specific for all Chlamydiales genomes, or different Chlamydiaceae family members, or members of the Chlamydia and Chlamydophila genera, or those unique to Protochlamydia amoebophila, but which are not found in any other bacteria. In total, 59 Chlamydiales-specific proteins, 79 Chlamydiaceae-specific proteins, 20 proteins each that are specific for both Chlamydia and Chlamydophila and 445 ORFs that are Protochlamydia-specific were identified. Additionally, 33 cases of possible gene loss or lateral gene transfer were also detected. Conclusion The identified chlamydiae-lineage specific proteins, many of which are highly conserved, provide novel biomarkers that should prove of much value in the diagnosis of these bacteria and in exploration of their prevalence and diversity. These conserved protein sequences (CPSs also provide novel therapeutic targets for drugs that are specific for these bacteria. Lastly, functional studies on these chlamydiae or chlamydiae subgroup-specific proteins should lead to important insights into lineage-specific adaptations with regards to development, infectivity and pathogenicity.

  19. The NS3 proteins of global strains of bluetongue virus evolve into regional topotypes through negative (purifying) selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balasuriya, U B R; Nadler, S A; Wilson, W C; Pritchard, L I; Smythe, A B; Savini, G; Monaco, F; De Santis, P; Zhang, N; Tabachnick, W J; Maclachlan, N J

    2008-01-01

    Comparison of the deduced amino acid sequences of the genes (S10) encoding the NS3 protein of 137 strains of bluetongue virus (BTV) from Africa, the Americas, Asia, Australia and the Mediterranean Basin showed limited variation. Common to all NS3 sequences were potential glycosylation sites at amino acid residues 63 and 150 and a cysteine at residue 137, whereas a cysteine at residue 181 was not conserved. The PPXY and PS/TAP late-domain motifs were conserved in all but three of the viruses. Phylogenetic analyses of these same sequences yielded two principal clades that grouped the viruses irrespective of their serotype or year of isolation (1900-2003). All viruses from Asia and Australia were grouped in one clade, whereas those from the other regions were present in both clades. Each clade segregated into distinct subclades that included viruses from single or multiple regions, and the S10 genes of some field viruses were identical to those of live-attenuated BTV vaccines. There was no evidence of positive selection on the S10 gene as assessed by reconstruction of ancestral codon states on the phylogeny, rather the functional constraints of the NS3 protein are expressed through substantial negative (purifying) selection.

  20. Up-Regulation of Antioxidant Proteins in the Plasma Proteome during Saturation Diving: Unique Coincidence under Hypobaric Hypoxia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domoto, Hideharu; Iwaya, Keiichi; Ikomi, Fumitaka; Matsuo, Hirotaka; Tadano, Yutaka; Fujii, Shigenori; Tachi, Kazuyoshi; Itoh, Yoshiyuki; Sato, Michiya; Inoue, Kimitoshi; Shinomiya, Nariyoshi

    2016-01-01

    Saturation diving (SD) is one of the safest techniques for tolerating hyperbaric conditions for long durations. However, the changes in the human plasma protein profile that occur during SD are unknown. To identify differential protein expression during or after SD, 65 blood samples from 15 healthy Japanese men trained in SD were analyzed by two-dimensional fluorescence difference gel electrophoresis. The expression of two proteins, one 32.4 kDa with an isoelectric point (pI) of 5.8 and the other 44.8 kDa with pI 4.0, were elevated during SD to 60, 100, and 200 meters sea water (msw). The expression of these proteins returned to pre-diving level when the SD training was completed. The two proteins were identified using in-gel digestion and mass spectrometric analysis; the 32.4 kDa protein was transthyretin and the 44.8 kDa protein was alpha-1-acid glycoprotein 1. Oxidation was detected at methionine 13 of transthyretin and at methionine 129 of alpha-1-acid glycoprotein 1 by tandem mass spectrometry. Moreover, haptoglobin was up-regulated during the decompression phase of 200 msw. These plasma proteins up-regulated during SD have a common function as anti-oxidants. This suggests that by coordinating their biological effects, these proteins activate a defense mechanism to counteract the effects of hyperbaric-hyperoxic conditions during SD.

  1. Up-Regulation of Antioxidant Proteins in the Plasma Proteome during Saturation Diving: Unique Coincidence under Hypobaric Hypoxia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hideharu Domoto

    Full Text Available Saturation diving (SD is one of the safest techniques for tolerating hyperbaric conditions for long durations. However, the changes in the human plasma protein profile that occur during SD are unknown. To identify differential protein expression during or after SD, 65 blood samples from 15 healthy Japanese men trained in SD were analyzed by two-dimensional fluorescence difference gel electrophoresis. The expression of two proteins, one 32.4 kDa with an isoelectric point (pI of 5.8 and the other 44.8 kDa with pI 4.0, were elevated during SD to 60, 100, and 200 meters sea water (msw. The expression of these proteins returned to pre-diving level when the SD training was completed. The two proteins were identified using in-gel digestion and mass spectrometric analysis; the 32.4 kDa protein was transthyretin and the 44.8 kDa protein was alpha-1-acid glycoprotein 1. Oxidation was detected at methionine 13 of transthyretin and at methionine 129 of alpha-1-acid glycoprotein 1 by tandem mass spectrometry. Moreover, haptoglobin was up-regulated during the decompression phase of 200 msw. These plasma proteins up-regulated during SD have a common function as anti-oxidants. This suggests that by coordinating their biological effects, these proteins activate a defense mechanism to counteract the effects of hyperbaric-hyperoxic conditions during SD.

  2. Plutonium uniqueness

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Silver, G.L.

    1984-01-01

    A standard is suggested against which the putative uniqueness of plutonium may be tested. It is common folklore that plutonium is unique among the chemical elements because its four common oxidation states can coexist in the same solution. Whether this putative uniqueness appears only during transit to equilibrium, or only at equilibrium, or all of the time, is not generally made clear. But while the folklore may contain some truth, it cannot be put to test until some measure of 'uniqueness' is agreed upon so that quantitative comparisons are possible. One way of measuring uniqueness is as the magnitude of the product of the mole fractions of the element at equilibrium. A 'coexistence index' is defined and discussed. (author)

  3. Cloning and Characterization of a Unique Cytotoxic Protein Parasporin-5 Produced by Bacillus thuringiensis A1100 Strain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keisuke Ekino

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Parasporin is the cytocidal protein present in the parasporal inclusion of the non-insecticidal Bacillus thuringiensis strains, which has no hemolytic activity but has cytocidal activities, preferentially killing cancer cells. In this study, we characterized a cytocidal protein that belongs to this category, which was designated parasporin-5 (PS5. PS5 was purified from B. thuringiensis serovar tohokuensis strain A1100 based on its cytocidal activity against human leukemic T cells (MOLT-4. The 50% effective concentration (EC50 of PS5 to MOLT-4 cells was approximately 0.075 μg/mL. PS5 was expressed as a 33.8-kDa inactive precursor protein and exhibited cytocidal activity only when degraded by protease at the C-terminal into smaller molecules of 29.8 kDa. Although PS5 showed no significant homology with other known parasporins, a Position Specific Iterative-Basic Local Alignment Search Tool (PSI-BLAST search revealed that the protein showed slight homology to, not only some B. thuringiensis Cry toxins, but also to aerolysin-type β-pore-forming toxins (β-PFTs. The recombinant PS5 protein could be obtained as an active protein only when it was expressed in a precursor followed by processing with proteinase K. The cytotoxic activities of the protein against various mammalian cell lines were evaluated. PS5 showed strong cytocidal activity to seven of 18 mammalian cell lines tested, and low to no cytotoxicity to the others.

  4. Plasmodium falciparum spermidine synthase inhibition results in unique perturbation-specific effects observed on transcript, protein and metabolite levels

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Becker, JVW

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available ] for hybridization to an Operon oligonucleotide array, interrogating 7797 70-mer oligonucleotides which repre- sent 4585 unique genes. RNA was extracted from several untreated, unsynchronized P. falciparum 3D7 cultures and cDNA synthesized for construction of a... background- subtracted intensity of a spot exceeded the average back- ground intensity of all spots in that channel [31]. cDNA synthesis and array hybridization A reference design was employed for array hybridisation, utilising the URR pool described...

  5. Unique protein expression signatures of survival time in kidney renal clear cell carcinoma through a pan-cancer screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Guangchun; Zhao, Wei; Song, Xiaofeng; Kwok-Shing Ng, Patrick; Karam, Jose A; Jonasch, Eric; Mills, Gordon B; Zhao, Zhongming; Ding, Zhiyong; Jia, Peilin

    2017-10-03

    In 2016, it is estimated that there will be 62,700 new cases of kidney cancer in the United States, and 14,240 patients will die from the disease. Because the incidence of kidney renal clear cell carcinoma (KIRC), the most common type of kidney cancer, is expected to continue to increase in the US, there is an urgent need to find effective diagnostic biomarkers for KIRC that could help earlier detection of and customized treatment strategies for the disease. Accordingly, in this study we systematically investigated KIRC's prognostic biomarkers for survival using the reverse phase protein array (RPPA) data and the high throughput sequencing data from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA). With comprehensive data available in TCGA, we systematically screened protein expression based survival biomarkers in 10 major cancer types, among which KIRC presented many protein prognostic biomarkers of survival time. This is in agreement with a previous report that expression level changes (mRNAs, microRNA and protein) may have a better performance for prognosis of KIRC. In this study, we also identified 52 prognostic genes for KIRC, many of which are involved in cell-cycle and cancer signaling, as well as 15 tumor-stage-specific prognostic biomarkers. Notably, we found fewer prognostic biomarkers for early-stage than for late-stage KIRC. Four biomarkers (the RPPA protein IDs: FASN, ACC1, Cyclin_B1 and Rad51) were found to be prognostic for survival based on both protein and mRNA expression data. Through pan-cancer screening, we found that many protein biomarkers were prognostic for patients' survival in KIRC. Stage-specific survival biomarkers in KIRC were also identified. Our study indicated that these protein biomarkers might have potential clinical value in terms of predicting survival in KIRC patients and developing individualized treatment strategies. Importantly, we found many biomarkers in KIRC at both the mRNA expression level and the protein expression level. These

  6. Evolvable Neural Software System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtis, Steven A.

    2009-01-01

    The Evolvable Neural Software System (ENSS) is composed of sets of Neural Basis Functions (NBFs), which can be totally autonomously created and removed according to the changing needs and requirements of the software system. The resulting structure is both hierarchical and self-similar in that a given set of NBFs may have a ruler NBF, which in turn communicates with other sets of NBFs. These sets of NBFs may function as nodes to a ruler node, which are also NBF constructs. In this manner, the synthetic neural system can exhibit the complexity, three-dimensional connectivity, and adaptability of biological neural systems. An added advantage of ENSS over a natural neural system is its ability to modify its core genetic code in response to environmental changes as reflected in needs and requirements. The neural system is fully adaptive and evolvable and is trainable before release. It continues to rewire itself while on the job. The NBF is a unique, bilevel intelligence neural system composed of a higher-level heuristic neural system (HNS) and a lower-level, autonomic neural system (ANS). Taken together, the HNS and the ANS give each NBF the complete capabilities of a biological neural system to match sensory inputs to actions. Another feature of the NBF is the Evolvable Neural Interface (ENI), which links the HNS and ANS. The ENI solves the interface problem between these two systems by actively adapting and evolving from a primitive initial state (a Neural Thread) to a complicated, operational ENI and successfully adapting to a training sequence of sensory input. This simulates the adaptation of a biological neural system in a developmental phase. Within the greater multi-NBF and multi-node ENSS, self-similar ENI s provide the basis for inter-NBF and inter-node connectivity.

  7. The Structure of the Poxvirus A33 Protein Reveals a Dimer of Unique C-Type Lectin-Like Domains

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Su, Hua-Poo; Singh, Kavita; Gittis, Apostolos G.; Garboczi, David N. (NIH)

    2010-11-03

    The current vaccine against smallpox is an infectious form of vaccinia virus that has significant side effects. Alternative vaccine approaches using recombinant viral proteins are being developed. A target of subunit vaccine strategies is the poxvirus protein A33, a conserved protein in the Chordopoxvirinae subfamily of Poxviridae that is expressed on the outer viral envelope. Here we have determined the structure of the A33 ectodomain of vaccinia virus. The structure revealed C-type lectin-like domains (CTLDs) that occur as dimers in A33 crystals with five different crystal lattices. Comparison of the A33 dimer models shows that the A33 monomers have a degree of flexibility in position within the dimer. Structural comparisons show that the A33 monomer is a close match to the Link module class of CTLDs but that the A33 dimer is most similar to the natural killer (NK)-cell receptor class of CTLDs. Structural data on Link modules and NK-cell receptor-ligand complexes suggest a surface of A33 that could interact with viral or host ligands. The dimer interface is well conserved in all known A33 sequences, indicating an important role for the A33 dimer. The structure indicates how previously described A33 mutations disrupt protein folding and locates the positions of N-linked glycosylations and the epitope of a protective antibody.

  8. The Mechanism of Action of Unique Small Molecules that Inhibit the Pim Protein Kinase Blocking Prostate Cancer Cell Growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-01

    TKO∕EV) or Pim-3 (TKO∕Pim-3). Values ( cpm ∕mg protein) are the average of three independent measurements, and the standard deviation for the mean is...article must therefore be hereby marked advertisement in accordance with 18 U.S.C. Section 1734 solely to indicate this fact. Received September 27, 2011

  9. VNARs: An Ancient and Unique Repertoire of Molecules That Deliver Small, Soluble, Stable and High Affinity Binders of Proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caroline Barelle

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available At 420 million years, the variable domain of New Antigen Receptors or VNARs are undoubtedly the oldest (and smallest antigen binding single domains identified in the vertebrate kingdom. Their role as an integral part of the adaptive immune system of sharks has been well established and has served to provide a greater understanding of the evolution of humoral immunity; their cellular components and processes as well as the underlying genetic organization and molecular control mechanisms. Intriguingly, unlike the variable domain of the camelid heavy chain antibodies or VHH, VNARs do not conform to all of the characteristic properties of classical antibodies with an ancestral origin that clearly distinguishes them from true immunoglobulin antibodies. However, this uniqueness of their origin only adds to their potential as next generation therapeutic biologics with their structural and functional attributes and commercial freedom all enhancing their profile and current success. In fact their small size, remarkable stability, molecular flexibility and solubility, together with their high affinity and selectivity for target, all reinforce the potential of these domains as drug candidates. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of the existing basic biology of these unique domains, to highlight the drug-like properties of VNARs and describe current progress in their journey towards the clinic.

  10. The dengue vector Aedes aegypti contains a functional high mobility group box 1 (HMGB1 protein with a unique regulatory C-terminus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabio Schneider Ribeiro

    Full Text Available The mosquito Aedes aegypti can spread the dengue, chikungunya and yellow fever viruses. Thus, the search for key molecules involved in the mosquito survival represents today a promising vector control strategy. High Mobility Group Box (HMGB proteins are essential nuclear factors that maintain the high-order structure of chromatin, keeping eukaryotic cells viable. Outside the nucleus, secreted HMGB proteins could alert the innate immune system to foreign antigens and trigger the initiation of host defenses. In this work, we cloned and functionally characterized the HMGB1 protein from Aedes aegypti (AaHMGB1. The AaHMGB1 protein typically consists of two HMG-box DNA binding domains and an acidic C-terminus. Interestingly, AaHMGB1 contains a unique alanine/glutamine-rich (AQ-rich C-terminal region that seems to be exclusive of dipteran HMGB proteins. AaHMGB1 is localized to the cell nucleus, mainly associated with heterochromatin. Circular dichroism analyses of AaHMGB1 or the C-terminal truncated proteins revealed α-helical structures. We showed that AaHMGB1 can effectively bind and change the topology of DNA, and that the AQ-rich and the C-terminal acidic regions can modulate its ability to promote DNA supercoiling, as well as its preference to bind supercoiled DNA. AaHMGB1 is phosphorylated by PKA and PKC, but not by CK2. Importantly, phosphorylation of AaHMGB1 by PKA or PKC completely abolishes its DNA bending activity. Thus, our study shows that a functional HMGB1 protein occurs in Aedes aegypt and we provide the first description of a HMGB1 protein containing an AQ-rich regulatory C-terminus.

  11. Unique genome organization of non-mammalian papillomaviruses provides insights into the evolution of viral early proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Doorslaer, Koenraad; Ruoppolo, Valeria; Schmidt, Annie; Lescroël, Amelie; Jongsomjit, Dennis; Elrod, Megan; Kraberger, Simona; Stainton, Daisy; Dugger, Katie M; Ballard, Grant; Ainley, David G; Varsani, Arvind

    2017-07-01

    The family Papillomaviridae contains more than 320 papillomavirus types, with most having been identified as infecting skin and mucosal epithelium in mammalian hosts. To date, only nine non-mammalian papillomaviruses have been described from birds ( n  = 5), a fish ( n  = 1), a snake ( n  = 1), and turtles ( n  = 2). The identification of papillomaviruses in sauropsids and a sparid fish suggests that early ancestors of papillomaviruses were already infecting the earliest Euteleostomi. The Euteleostomi clade includes more than 90 per cent of the living vertebrate species, and progeny virus could have been passed on to all members of this clade, inhabiting virtually every habitat on the planet. As part of this study, we isolated a novel papillomavirus from a 16-year-old female Adélie penguin ( Pygoscelis adeliae ) from Cape Crozier, Ross Island (Antarctica). The new papillomavirus shares ∼64 per cent genome-wide identity to a previously described Adélie penguin papillomavirus. Phylogenetic analyses show that the non-mammalian viruses (expect the python, Morelia spilota , associated papillomavirus) cluster near the base of the papillomavirus evolutionary tree. A papillomavirus isolated from an avian host (Northern fulmar; Fulmarus glacialis ), like the two turtle papillomaviruses, lacks a putative E9 protein that is found in all other avian papillomaviruses. Furthermore, the Northern fulmar papillomavirus has an E7 more similar to the mammalian viruses than the other avian papillomaviruses. Typical E6 proteins of mammalian papillomaviruses have two Zinc finger motifs, whereas the sauropsid papillomaviruses only have one such motif. Furthermore, this motif is absent in the fish papillomavirus. Thus, it is highly likely that the most recent common ancestor of the mammalian and sauropsid papillomaviruses had a single motif E6. It appears that a motif duplication resulted in mammalian papillomaviruses having a double Zinc finger motif in E6. We

  12. Unique genome organization of non-mammalian papillomaviruses provides insights into the evolution of viral early proteins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Doorslaer, Koenraad; Ruoppolo, Valeria; Schmidt, Annie; Lescroël, Amelie; Jongsomjit, Dennis; Elrod, Megan; Kraberger, Simona; Stainton, Daisy; Dugger, Katie M.; Ballard, Grant; Ainley, David G.; Varsani, Arvind

    2017-01-01

    The family Papillomaviridae contains more than 320 papillomavirus types, with most having been identified as infecting skin and mucosal epithelium in mammalian hosts. To date, only nine non-mammalian papillomaviruses have been described from birds (n = 5), a fish (n = 1), a snake (n = 1), and turtles (n = 2). The identification of papillomaviruses in sauropsids and a sparid fish suggests that early ancestors of papillomaviruses were already infecting the earliest Euteleostomi. The Euteleostomi clade includes more than 90 per cent of the living vertebrate species, and progeny virus could have been passed on to all members of this clade, inhabiting virtually every habitat on the planet. As part of this study, we isolated a novel papillomavirus from a 16-year-old female Adélie penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae) from Cape Crozier, Ross Island (Antarctica). The new papillomavirus shares ∼64 per cent genome-wide identity to a previously described Adélie penguin papillomavirus. Phylogenetic analyses show that the non-mammalian viruses (expect the python, Morelia spilota, associated papillomavirus) cluster near the base of the papillomavirus evolutionary tree. A papillomavirus isolated from an avian host (Northern fulmar; Fulmarus glacialis), like the two turtle papillomaviruses, lacks a putative E9 protein that is found in all other avian papillomaviruses. Furthermore, the Northern fulmar papillomavirus has an E7 more similar to the mammalian viruses than the other avian papillomaviruses. Typical E6 proteins of mammalian papillomaviruses have two Zinc finger motifs, whereas the sauropsid papillomaviruses only have one such motif. Furthermore, this motif is absent in the fish papillomavirus. Thus, it is highly likely that the most recent common ancestor of the mammalian and sauropsid papillomaviruses had a single motif E6. It appears that a motif duplication resulted in mammalian papillomaviruses having a double Zinc finger motif in E6. We estimated the

  13. Selenoglutathione Diselenide: Unique Redox Reactions in the GPx-Like Catalytic Cycle and Repairing of Disulfide Bonds in Scrambled Protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimodaira, Shingo; Asano, Yuki; Arai, Kenta; Iwaoka, Michio

    2017-10-24

    Selenoglutathione (GSeH) is a selenium analogue of naturally abundant glutathione (GSH). In this study, this water-soluble small tripeptide was synthesized in a high yield (up to 98%) as an oxidized diselenide form, i.e., GSeSeG (1), by liquid-phase peptide synthesis (LPPS). Obtained 1 was applied to the investigation of the glutathione peroxidase (GPx)-like catalytic cycle. The important intermediates, i.e., GSe - and GSeSG, besides GSeO 2 H were characterized by 77 Se NMR spectroscopy. Thiol exchange of GSeSG with various thiols, such as cysteine and dithiothreitol, was found to promote the conversion to GSe - significantly. In addition, disproportionation of GSeSR to 1 and RSSR, which would be initiated by heterolytic cleavage of the Se-S bond and catalyzed by the generated selenolate, was observed. On the basis of these redox behaviors, it was proposed that the heterolytic cleavage of the Se-S bond can be facilitated by the interaction between the Se atom and an amino or aromatic group, which is present at the GPx active site. On the other hand, when a catalytic amount of 1 was reacted with scrambled 4S species of RNase A in the presence of NADPH and glutathione reductase, native protein was efficiently regenerated, suggesting a potential use of 1 to repair misfolded proteins through reduction of the non-native SS bonds.

  14. Unique structure and stability of HmuY, a novel heme-binding protein of Porphyromonas gingivalis.

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    Halina Wójtowicz

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Infection, survival, and proliferation of pathogenic bacteria in humans depend on their capacity to impair host responses and acquire nutrients in a hostile environment. Among such nutrients is heme, a co-factor for oxygen storage, electron transport, photosynthesis, and redox biochemistry, which is indispensable for life. Porphyromonas gingivalis is the major human bacterial pathogen responsible for severe periodontitis. It recruits heme through HmuY, which sequesters heme from host carriers and delivers it to its cognate outer-membrane transporter, the TonB-dependent receptor HmuR. Here we report that heme binding does not significantly affect the secondary structure of HmuY. The crystal structure of heme-bound HmuY reveals a new all-beta fold mimicking a right hand. The thumb and fingers pinch heme iron through two apical histidine residues, giving rise to highly symmetric octahedral iron co-ordination. The tetrameric quaternary arrangement of the protein found in the crystal structure is consistent with experiments in solution. It shows that thumbs and fingertips, and, by extension, the bound heme groups, are shielded from competing heme-binding proteins from the host. This may also facilitate heme transport to HmuR for internalization. HmuY, both in its apo- and in its heme-bound forms, is resistant to proteolytic digestion by trypsin and the major secreted proteases of P. gingivalis, gingipains K and R. It is also stable against thermal and chemical denaturation. In conclusion, these studies reveal novel molecular properties of HmuY that are consistent with its role as a putative virulence factor during bacterial infection.

  15. Unique nonstructural proteins of Pneumonia Virus of Mice (PVM) promote degradation of interferon (IFN) pathway components and IFN-stimulated gene proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhar, Jayeeta; Barik, Sailen

    2016-12-01

    Pneumonia Virus of Mice (PVM) is the only virus that shares the Pneumovirus genus of the Paramyxoviridae family with Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV). A deadly mouse pathogen, PVM has the potential to serve as a robust animal model of RSV infection, since human RSV does not fully replicate the human pathology in mice. Like RSV, PVM also encodes two nonstructural proteins that have been implicated to suppress the IFN pathway, but surprisingly, they exhibit no sequence similarity with their RSV equivalents. The molecular mechanism of PVM NS function, therefore, remains unknown. Here, we show that recombinant PVM NS proteins degrade the mouse counterparts of the IFN pathway components. Proteasomal degradation appears to be mediated by ubiquitination promoted by PVM NS proteins. Interestingly, NS proteins of PVM lowered the levels of several ISG (IFN-stimulated gene) proteins as well. These results provide a molecular foundation for the mechanisms by which PVM efficiently subverts the IFN response of the murine cell. They also reveal that in spite of their high sequence dissimilarity, the two pneumoviral NS proteins are functionally and mechanistically similar.

  16. F-Type Lectins: A Highly Diversified Family of Fucose-Binding Proteins with a Unique Sequence Motif and Structural Fold, Involved in Self/Non-Self-Recognition

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    Gerardo R. Vasta

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The F-type lectin (FTL family is one of the most recent to be identified and structurally characterized. Members of the FTL family are characterized by a fucose recognition domain [F-type lectin domain (FTLD] that displays a novel jellyroll fold (“F-type” fold and unique carbohydrate- and calcium-binding sequence motifs. This novel lectin family comprises widely distributed proteins exhibiting single, double, or greater multiples of the FTLD, either tandemly arrayed or combined with other structurally and functionally distinct domains, yielding lectin subunits of pleiotropic properties even within a single species. Furthermore, the extraordinary variability of FTL sequences (isoforms that are expressed in a single individual has revealed genetic mechanisms of diversification in ligand recognition that are unique to FTLs. Functions of FTLs in self/non-self-recognition include innate immunity, fertilization, microbial adhesion, and pathogenesis, among others. In addition, although the F-type fold is distinctive for FTLs, a structure-based search revealed apparently unrelated proteins with minor sequence similarity to FTLs that displayed the FTLD fold. In general, the phylogenetic analysis of FTLD sequences from viruses to mammals reveals clades that are consistent with the currently accepted taxonomy of extant species. However, the surprisingly discontinuous distribution of FTLDs within each taxonomic category suggests not only an extensive structural/functional diversification of the FTLs along evolutionary lineages but also that this intriguing lectin family has been subject to frequent gene duplication, secondary loss, lateral transfer, and functional co-option.

  17. Structural and biochemical analysis of a unique phosphatase from Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus reveals its structural and functional relationship with the protein tyrosine phosphatase class of phytase.

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    Robert J Gruninger

    Full Text Available Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus is an unusual δ-proteobacterium that invades and preys on other Gram-negative bacteria and is of potential interest as a whole cell therapeutic against pathogens of man, animals and crops. PTPs (protein tyrosine phosphatases are an important class of enzyme involved in desphosphorylating a variety of substrates, often with implications in cell signaling. The B. bacteriovorus open reading frame Bd1204 is predicted to encode a PTP of unknown function. Bd1204 is both structurally and mechanistically related to the PTP-like phytase (PTPLP class of enzymes and possesses a number of unique properties not observed in any other PTPLPs characterized to date. Bd1204 does not display catalytic activity against some common protein tyrosine phosphatase substrates but is highly specific for hydrolysis of phosphomonoester bonds of inositol hexakisphosphate. The structure reveals that Bd1204 has the smallest and least electropositive active site of all characterized PTPLPs to date yet possesses a unique substrate specificity characterized by a strict preference for inositol hexakisphosphate. These two active site features are believed to be the most significant contributors to the specificity of phytate degrading enzymes. We speculate that Bd1204 may be involved in phosphate acquisition outside of prey.

  18. Using non-invasive molecular spectroscopic techniques to detect unique aspects of protein Amide functional groups and chemical properties of modeled forage from different sourced-origins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Cuiying; Zhang, Xuewei; Yu, Peiqiang

    2016-03-05

    The non-invasive molecular spectroscopic technique-FT/IR is capable to detect the molecular structure spectral features that are associated with biological, nutritional and biodegradation functions. However, to date, few researches have been conducted to use these non-invasive molecular spectroscopic techniques to study forage internal protein structures associated with biodegradation and biological functions. The objectives of this study were to detect unique aspects and association of protein Amide functional groups in terms of protein Amide I and II spectral profiles and chemical properties in the alfalfa forage (Medicago sativa L.) from different sourced-origins. In this study, alfalfa hay with two different origins was used as modeled forage for molecular structure and chemical property study. In each forage origin, five to seven sources were analyzed. The molecular spectral profiles were determined using FT/IR non-invasive molecular spectroscopy. The parameters of protein spectral profiles included functional groups of Amide I, Amide II and Amide I to II ratio. The results show that the modeled forage Amide I and Amide II were centered at 1653 cm(-1) and 1545 cm(-1), respectively. The Amide I spectral height and area intensities were from 0.02 to 0.03 and 2.67 to 3.36 AI, respectively. The Amide II spectral height and area intensities were from 0.01 to 0.02 and 0.71 to 0.93 AI, respectively. The Amide I to II spectral peak height and area ratios were from 1.86 to 1.88 and 3.68 to 3.79, respectively. Our results show that the non-invasive molecular spectroscopic techniques are capable to detect forage internal protein structure features which are associated with forage chemical properties. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Top-down proteomics reveals a unique protein S-thiolation switch in Salmonella Typimurium in response to infection-like conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ansong, Charles; Wu, Si; Meng, Da; Liu, Xiaowen; Brewer, Heather M.; Kaiser, Brooke LD; Nakayasu, Ernesto S.; Cort, John R.; Pevzner, Pavel A.; Smith, Richard D.; Heffron, Fred; Adkins, Joshua N.; Pasa-Tolic, Ljiljana

    2013-06-18

    Characterization of the mature protein complement in cells is crucial for a better understanding of cellular processes on a systems-wide scale. Bottom-up proteomic approaches often lead to loss of critical information about an endogenous protein’s actual state due to post translational modifications (PTMs) and other processes. Top-down approaches that involve analysis of the intact protein can address this concern but present significant analytical challenges related to the separation quality needed, measurement sensitivity, and speed that result in low throughput and limited coverage. Here we used single-dimension ultra high pressure liquid chromatography mass spectrometry to investigate the comprehensive ‘intact’ proteome of the Gram negative bacterial pathogen Salmonella Typhimurium. Top-down proteomics analysis revealed 563 unique proteins including 1665 proteoforms generated by PTMs, representing the largest microbial top-down dataset reported to date. Our analysis not only confirmed several previously recognized aspects of Salmonella biology and bacterial PTMs in general, but also revealed several novel biological insights. Of particular interest was differential utilization of the protein S-thiolation forms S-glutathionylation and S-cysteinylation in response to infection-like conditions versus basal conditions, which was corroborated by changes in corresponding biosynthetic pathways. This differential utilization highlights underlying metabolic mechanisms that modulate changes in cellular signaling, and represents to our knowledge the first report of S-cysteinylation in Gram negative bacteria. The demonstrated utility of our simple proteome-wide intact protein level measurement strategy for gaining biological insight should promote broader adoption and applications of top-down proteomics approaches.

  20. Evolvable synthetic neural system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtis, Steven A. (Inventor)

    2009-01-01

    An evolvable synthetic neural system includes an evolvable neural interface operably coupled to at least one neural basis function. Each neural basis function includes an evolvable neural interface operably coupled to a heuristic neural system to perform high-level functions and an autonomic neural system to perform low-level functions. In some embodiments, the evolvable synthetic neural system is operably coupled to one or more evolvable synthetic neural systems in a hierarchy.

  1. Immunohistochemical Detection of a Unique Protein within Cells of Snakes Having Inclusion Body Disease, a World-Wide Disease Seen in Members of the Families Boidae and Pythonidae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Li-Wen; Fu, Ann; Wozniak, Edward; Chow, Marjorie; Duke, Diane G.; Green, Linda; Kelley, Karen; Hernandez, Jorge A.; Jacobson, Elliott R.

    2013-01-01

    Inclusion body disease (IBD) is a worldwide disease in captive boa constrictors (boa constrictor) and occasionally in other snakes of the families Boidae and Pythonidae. The exact causative agent(s) and pathogenesis are not yet fully understood. Currently, diagnosis of IBD is based on the light microscopic identification of eosinophilic intracytoplasmic inclusion bodies in hematoxylin and eosin stained tissues or blood smears. An antigenically unique 68 KDa protein was identified within the IBD inclusion bodies, called IBD protein. A validated immuno-based ante-mortem diagnostic test is needed for screening snakes that are at risk of having IBD. In this study, despite difficulties in solubilizing semi-purified inclusion bodies, utilizing hybridoma technology a mouse anti-IBD protein monoclonal antibody (MAB) was produced. The antigenic specificity of the antibody was confirmed and validated by western blots, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, immuno-transmission electron microscopy, and immunohistochemical staining. Paraffin embedded tissues of IBD positive and negative boa constrictors (n=94) collected from 1990 to 2011 were tested with immunohistochemical staining. In boa constrictors, the anti-IBDP MAB had a sensitivity of 83% and specificity of 100% in detecting IBD. The antibody also cross-reacted with IBD inclusion bodies in carpet pythons (Morelia spilota) and a ball python (python regius). This validated antibody can serve as a tool for the development of ante-mortem immunodiagnostic tests for IBD. PMID:24340066

  2. Immunohistochemical detection of a unique protein within cells of snakes having inclusion body disease, a world-wide disease seen in members of the families Boidae and Pythonidae.

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    Li-Wen Chang

    Full Text Available Inclusion body disease (IBD is a worldwide disease in captive boa constrictors (boa constrictor and occasionally in other snakes of the families Boidae and Pythonidae. The exact causative agent(s and pathogenesis are not yet fully understood. Currently, diagnosis of IBD is based on the light microscopic identification of eosinophilic intracytoplasmic inclusion bodies in hematoxylin and eosin stained tissues or blood smears. An antigenically unique 68 KDa protein was identified within the IBD inclusion bodies, called IBD protein. A validated immuno-based ante-mortem diagnostic test is needed for screening snakes that are at risk of having IBD. In this study, despite difficulties in solubilizing semi-purified inclusion bodies, utilizing hybridoma technology a mouse anti-IBD protein monoclonal antibody (MAB was produced. The antigenic specificity of the antibody was confirmed and validated by western blots, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, immuno-transmission electron microscopy, and immunohistochemical staining. Paraffin embedded tissues of IBD positive and negative boa constrictors (n=94 collected from 1990 to 2011 were tested with immunohistochemical staining. In boa constrictors, the anti-IBDP MAB had a sensitivity of 83% and specificity of 100% in detecting IBD. The antibody also cross-reacted with IBD inclusion bodies in carpet pythons (Morelia spilota and a ball python (python regius. This validated antibody can serve as a tool for the development of ante-mortem immunodiagnostic tests for IBD.

  3. Orthogonal Electric Field Measurements near the Green Fluorescent Protein Fluorophore through Stark Effect Spectroscopy and pKa Shifts Provide a Unique Benchmark for Electrostatics Models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slocum, Joshua D; First, Jeremy T; Webb, Lauren J

    2017-07-20

    continuum-based model in this system and offer this experimentally self-consistent data set as a target benchmark for electrostatics models, which could allow for a more rigorous test of pK a prediction techniques due to the unique environment of the water-filled GFP barrel compared to traditional globular proteins.

  4. Lipoproteins comprise at least 10 different classes in rats, each of which contains a unique set of proteins as the primary component.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konishi, Tomokazu; Takahashi, Yoko

    2018-01-01

    Although lipoproteins are conventionally separated into a few classes using density gradient centrifugation, there may be a much higher number of physical classes that differ in origin or phase. Comprehensive knowledge of the classes of lipoproteins is rather limited, which hinders both the study of their functions and the identification of the primary causes of related diseases. This study aims to determine the number of classes of lipoproteins that can be practically distinguishable and identify the differences between them. We separated rat serum samples by gel filtration. The elution was continuously monitored for triglyceride (TG), cholesterol, and protein, and fractionated for further SDS-PAGE and immunological detection of apoprotein A-I (ApoA1) and apoprotein B (ApoB). The elution patterns were analyzed using a parsimonious method, i.e., the estimation of the least number of classes. Ten classes were recognized that contained different amounts of TG and cholesterol, as well as a unique protein content. Each of the classes contained much more protein than that observed previously, especially in low-density lipoproteins (LDL) classes. In particular, two major antiproteases formed complexes with specific classes of LDL; because these classes exclusively carry cholesterol and antiproteases, they may lead to the progression of atheroma by supplying materials that enlarge fatty streaks and protecting thrombi from enzymatic digestion. The separated classes may have specific biological functions. The attribution of protein species to certain classes will help understand the functions. A distinction among lipoprotein classes may provide important information in the field of vascular pathology.

  5. Natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graves, Christopher J; Ros, Vera I D; Stevenson, Brian; Sniegowski, Paul D; Brisson, Dustin

    2013-01-01

    The hypothesis that evolvability - the capacity to evolve by natural selection - is itself the object of natural selection is highly intriguing but remains controversial due in large part to a paucity of direct experimental evidence. The antigenic variation mechanisms of microbial pathogens provide an experimentally tractable system to test whether natural selection has favored mechanisms that increase evolvability. Many antigenic variation systems consist of paralogous unexpressed 'cassettes' that recombine into an expression site to rapidly alter the expressed protein. Importantly, the magnitude of antigenic change is a function of the genetic diversity among the unexpressed cassettes. Thus, evidence that selection favors among-cassette diversity is direct evidence that natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability. We used the Lyme disease bacterium, Borrelia burgdorferi, as a model to test the prediction that natural selection favors amino acid diversity among unexpressed vls cassettes and thereby promotes evolvability in a primary surface antigen, VlsE. The hypothesis that diversity among vls cassettes is favored by natural selection was supported in each B. burgdorferi strain analyzed using both classical (dN/dS ratios) and Bayesian population genetic analyses of genetic sequence data. This hypothesis was also supported by the conservation of highly mutable tandem-repeat structures across B. burgdorferi strains despite a near complete absence of sequence conservation. Diversification among vls cassettes due to natural selection and mutable repeat structures promotes long-term antigenic evolvability of VlsE. These findings provide a direct demonstration that molecular mechanisms that enhance evolvability of surface antigens are an evolutionary adaptation. The molecular evolutionary processes identified here can serve as a model for the evolution of antigenic evolvability in many pathogens which utilize similar strategies to establish chronic infections.

  6. Natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher J Graves

    Full Text Available The hypothesis that evolvability - the capacity to evolve by natural selection - is itself the object of natural selection is highly intriguing but remains controversial due in large part to a paucity of direct experimental evidence. The antigenic variation mechanisms of microbial pathogens provide an experimentally tractable system to test whether natural selection has favored mechanisms that increase evolvability. Many antigenic variation systems consist of paralogous unexpressed 'cassettes' that recombine into an expression site to rapidly alter the expressed protein. Importantly, the magnitude of antigenic change is a function of the genetic diversity among the unexpressed cassettes. Thus, evidence that selection favors among-cassette diversity is direct evidence that natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability. We used the Lyme disease bacterium, Borrelia burgdorferi, as a model to test the prediction that natural selection favors amino acid diversity among unexpressed vls cassettes and thereby promotes evolvability in a primary surface antigen, VlsE. The hypothesis that diversity among vls cassettes is favored by natural selection was supported in each B. burgdorferi strain analyzed using both classical (dN/dS ratios and Bayesian population genetic analyses of genetic sequence data. This hypothesis was also supported by the conservation of highly mutable tandem-repeat structures across B. burgdorferi strains despite a near complete absence of sequence conservation. Diversification among vls cassettes due to natural selection and mutable repeat structures promotes long-term antigenic evolvability of VlsE. These findings provide a direct demonstration that molecular mechanisms that enhance evolvability of surface antigens are an evolutionary adaptation. The molecular evolutionary processes identified here can serve as a model for the evolution of antigenic evolvability in many pathogens which utilize similar strategies to establish

  7. Fibrinogen-Related Proteins in Tissue Repair: How a Unique Domain with a Common Structure Controls Diverse Aspects of Wound Healing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuliani-Alvarez, Lorena; Midwood, Kim S

    2015-05-01

    Significance: Fibrinogen-related proteins (FRePs) comprise an intriguing collection of extracellular molecules, each containing a conserved fibrinogen-like globe (FBG). This group includes the eponymous fibrinogen as well as the tenascin, angiopoietin, and ficolin families. Many of these proteins are upregulated during tissue repair and exhibit diverse roles during wound healing. Recent Advances: An increasing body of evidence highlights the specific expression of a number of FRePs following tissue injury and infection. Upon induction, each FReP uses its FBG domain to mediate quite distinct effects that contribute to different stages of tissue repair, such as driving coagulation, pathogen detection, inflammation, angiogenesis, and tissue remodeling. Critical Issues: Despite a high degree of homology among FRePs, each contains unique sequences that enable their diversification of function. Comparative analysis of the structure and function of FRePs and precise mapping of regions that interact with a variety of ligands has started to reveal the underlying molecular mechanisms by which these proteins play very different roles using their common domain. Future Directions: Fibrinogen has long been used in the clinic as a synthetic matrix serving as a scaffold or a delivery system to aid tissue repair. Novel therapeutic strategies are now emerging that harness the use of other FRePs to improve wound healing outcomes. As we learn more about the underlying mechanisms by which each FReP contributes to the repair response, specific blockade, or indeed potentiation, of their function offers real potential to enable regulation of distinct processes during pathological wound healing.

  8. Comparative analysis of the 5S rRNA and its associated proteins reveals unique primitive rather than parasitic features in Giardia lamblia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Jin-Mei; Sun, Jun; Xin, De-Dong; Wen, Jian-Fan

    2012-01-01

    5S rRNA is a highly conserved ribosomal component. Eukaryotic 5S rRNA and its associated proteins (5S rRNA system) have become very well understood. Giardia lamblia was thought by some researchers to be the most primitive extant eukaryote while others considered it a highly evolved parasite. Previous reports have indicated that some aspects of its 5S rRNA system are simpler than that of common eukaryotes. We here explore whether this is true to its entire system, and whether this simplicity is a primitive or parasitic feature. By collecting and confirming pre-existing data and identifying new data, we obtained almost complete datasets of the system of three isolates of G. lamblia, two other parasitic excavates (Trichomonas vaginalis, Trypanosoma cruzi), and one free-living one (Naegleria gruberi). After comprehensively comparing each aspect of the system among these excavates and also with those of archaea and common eukaryotes, we found all the three Giardia isolates to harbor a same simplified 5S rRNA system, which is not only much simpler than that of common eukaryotes but also the simplest one among those of these excavates, and is surprisingly very similar to that of archaea; we also found among these excavates the system in parasitic species is not necessarily simpler than that in free-living species, conversely, the system of free-living species is even simpler in some respects than those of parasitic ones. The simplicity of Giardia 5S rRNA system should be considered a primitive rather than parasitically-degenerated feature. Therefore, Giardia 5S rRNA system might be a primitive system that is intermediate between that of archaea and the common eukaryotic model system, and it may reflect the evolutionary history of the eukaryotic 5S rRNA system from the archaeal form. Our results also imply G. lamblia might be a primitive eukaryote with secondary parasitically-degenerated features.

  9. Unique in vitro and in vivo thrombopoietic activities of ingenol 3,20 dibenzoate, a Ca(++-independent protein kinase C isoform agonist.

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    Frederick K Racke

    Full Text Available Thrombopoiesis following severe bone marrow injury frequently is delayed, thereby resulting in life-threatening thrombocytopenia for which there are limited treatment options. The reasons for these delays in recovery are not well understood. Protein kinase C (PKC agonists promote megakaryocyte differentiation in leukemia cell lines and primary cells. However, little is known about the megakaryopoietic effects of PKC agonists on primary CD34+ cells grown in culture or in vivo. Here we present evidence that the novel PKC isoform-selective agonist 3,20 ingenol dibenzoate (IDB potently stimulates early megakaryopoiesis of human CD34+ cells. In contrast, broad spectrum PKC agonists failed to do so. In vivo, a single intraperitoneal injection of IDB selectively increased platelets in mice without affecting hemoglobin or white counts. Finally, IDB strongly mitigated radiation-induced thrombocytopenia, even when administered 24 hours after irradiation. Our data demonstrate that novel PKC isoform agonists such as IDB may represent a unique therapeutic strategy for accelerating the recovery of platelet counts following severe marrow injury.

  10. The RNA binding protein HuR differentially regulates unique subsets of mRNAs in estrogen receptor negative and estrogen receptor positive breast cancer

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    Chen Jing

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The discordance between steady-state levels of mRNAs and protein has been attributed to posttranscriptional control mechanisms affecting mRNA stability and translation. Traditional methods of genome wide microarray analysis, profiling steady-state levels of mRNA, may miss important mRNA targets owing to significant posttranscriptional gene regulation by RNA binding proteins (RBPs. Methods The ribonomic approach, utilizing RNA immunoprecipitation hybridized to microarray (RIP-Chip, provides global identification of putative endogenous mRNA targets of different RBPs. HuR is an RBP that binds to the AU-rich elements (ARE of labile mRNAs, such as proto-oncogenes, facilitating their translation into protein. HuR has been shown to play a role in cancer progression and elevated levels of cytoplasmic HuR directly correlate with increased invasiveness and poor prognosis for many cancers, including those of the breast. HuR has been described to control genes in several of the acquired capabilities of cancer and has been hypothesized to be a tumor-maintenance gene, allowing for cancers to proliferate once they are established. Results We used HuR RIP-Chip as a comprehensive and systematic method to survey breast cancer target genes in both MCF-7 (estrogen receptor positive, ER+ and MDA-MB-231 (estrogen receptor negative, ER- breast cancer cell lines. We identified unique subsets of HuR-associated mRNAs found individually or in both cell types. Two novel HuR targets, CD9 and CALM2 mRNAs, were identified and validated by quantitative RT-PCR and biotin pull-down analysis. Conclusion This is the first report of a side-by-side genome-wide comparison of HuR-associated targets in wild type ER+ and ER- breast cancer. We found distinct, differentially expressed subsets of cancer related genes in ER+ and ER- breast cancer cell lines, and noted that the differential regulation of two cancer-related genes by HuR was contingent upon the cellular

  11. Evolved osmotolerant Escherichia coli mutants frequently exhibit defective N-acetylglucosamine catabolism and point mutations in cell shape-regulating protein MreB.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winkler, James D; Garcia, Carlos; Olson, Michelle; Callaway, Emily; Kao, Katy C

    2014-06-01

    Biocatalyst robustness toward stresses imposed during fermentation is important for efficient bio-based production. Osmotic stress, imposed by high osmolyte concentrations or dense populations, can significantly impact growth and productivity. In order to better understand the osmotic stress tolerance phenotype, we evolved sexual (capable of in situ DNA exchange) and asexual Escherichia coli strains under sodium chloride (NaCl) stress. All isolates had significantly improved growth under selection and could grow in up to 0.80 M (47 g/liter) NaCl, a concentration that completely inhibits the growth of the unevolved parental strains. Whole genome resequencing revealed frequent mutations in genes controlling N-acetylglucosamine catabolism (nagC, nagA), cell shape (mrdA, mreB), osmoprotectant uptake (proV), and motility (fimA). Possible epistatic interactions between nagC, nagA, fimA, and proV deletions were also detected when reconstructed as defined mutations. Biofilm formation under osmotic stress was found to be decreased in most mutant isolates, coupled with perturbations in indole secretion. Transcriptional analysis also revealed significant changes in ompACGL porin expression and increased transcription of sulfonate uptake systems in the evolved mutants. These findings expand our current knowledge of the osmotic stress phenotype and will be useful for the rational engineering of osmotic tolerance into industrial strains in the future. Copyright © 2014, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  12. AMP N1-Oxide, a Unique Compound of Royal Jelly, Induces Neurite Outgrowth from PC12 Vells via Signaling by Protein Kinase A Independent of that by Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase

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    Noriko Hattori

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Earlier we identified adenosine monophosphate (AMP N1-oxide as a unique compound of royal jelly (RJ that induces neurite outgrowth (neuritegenesis from cultured rat pheochromocytoma PC12 cells via the adenosine A2A receptor. Now, we found that AMP N1-oxide stimulated the phosphorylation of not only mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK but also that of cAMP/calcium-response element-binding protein (CREB in a dose-dependent manner. Inhibition of MAPK activation by a MEK inhibitor, PD98059, did not influence the AMP N1-oxide-induced neuritegenesis, whereas that of protein kinase A (PKA by a selective inhibitor, KT5720, significantly reduced neurite outgrowth. AMP N1-oxide also had the activity of suppressing the growth of PC12 cells, which correlated well with the neurite outgrowth-promoting activity. KT5720 restored the growth of AMP N1-oxide-treated PC12 cells. It is well known that nerve growth factor suppresses proliferation of PC12 cells before causing stimulation of neuronal differentiation. Thus, AMP N1-oxide elicited neuronal differentiation of PC12 cells, as evidenced by generation of neurites, and inhibited cell growth through adenosine A2A receptor-mediated PKA signaling, which may be responsible for characteristic actions of RJ.

  13. Unique ATPase site architecture triggers cis-mediated synchronized ATP binding in heptameric AAA+-ATPase domain of flagellar regulatory protein FlrC.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dey, Sanjay; Biswas, Maitree; Sen, Udayaditya; Dasgupta, Jhimli

    2015-04-03

    Bacterial enhancer-binding proteins (bEBPs) oligomerize through AAA(+) domains and use ATP hydrolysis-driven energy to isomerize the RNA polymerase-σ(54) complex during transcriptional initiation. Here, we describe the first structure of the central AAA(+) domain of the flagellar regulatory protein FlrC (FlrC(C)), a bEBP that controls flagellar synthesis in Vibrio cholerae. Our results showed that FlrC(C) forms heptamer both in nucleotide (Nt)-free and -bound states without ATP-dependent subunit remodeling. Unlike the bEBPs such as NtrC1 or PspF, a novel cis-mediated "all or none" ATP binding occurs in the heptameric FlrC(C), because constriction at the ATPase site, caused by loop L3 and helix α7, restricts the proximity of the trans-protomer required for Nt binding. A unique "closed to open" movement of Walker A, assisted by trans-acting "Glu switch" Glu-286, facilitates ATP binding and hydrolysis. Fluorescence quenching and ATPase assays on FlrC(C) and mutants revealed that although Arg-349 of sensor II, positioned by trans-acting Glu-286 and Tyr-290, acts as a key residue to bind and hydrolyze ATP, Arg-319 of α7 anchors ribose and controls the rate of ATP hydrolysis by retarding the expulsion of ADP. Heptameric state of FlrC(C) is restored in solution even with the transition state mimicking ADP·AlF3. Structural results and pulldown assays indicated that L3 renders an in-built geometry to L1 and L2 causing σ(54)-FlrC(C) interaction independent of Nt binding. Collectively, our results underscore a novel mechanism of ATP binding and σ(54) interaction that strives to understand the transcriptional mechanism of the bEBPs, which probably interact directly with the RNA polymerase-σ(54) complex without DNA looping. © 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  14. Distinct accessory cell requirements define two types of rat T cell hybridomas specific for unique determinants in the encephalitogenic 68-86 region of myelin basic protein

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mannie, M.D.; Paterson, P.Y.; Thomas, D.W.; Nairn, R.

    1990-01-01

    Six clonotypically unique T cell hybridomas from Lewis rats were used to study accessory cell activities required for class II MHC restricted T cell responses to the 68-86 encephalitogenic sequence of myelin basic protein (MBP). T cell hybrids which were cultured with GP68-86 68-86 sequence of guinea pig MBP (GPMBP) and naive splenocytes (SPL) were induced to produce IL-2 as measured by the CTLL indicator cell line. The hybrids were categorized into two subsets (designated THYB-1 and THYB-2), because two distinct subset-specific pathways of communication between accessory cells and T cells were involved in GPMBP-induced IL-2 production. These pathways were distinguished by the following six observations. First, when the duration of a pulse of SPL with GPMBP was lengthened from 1 to 4 h, these SPL lost their ability to induce IL-2 production by THYB-2 hybrids yet nevertheless retained full stimulatory activity for THYB-1 hybrids. Second, paraformaldehyde fixation of GPMBP-pulsed SPL abrogated an activity necessary for Ag-induced IL-2 production by THYB-2 hybrids. These fixed SPL were nevertheless able to stimulate THYB-1 hybrids, albeit to a lesser extent than viable unfixed SPL. Third, the addition of either cycloheximide, cytochalasin B, or 2-deoxyglucose to an Ag pulse of SPL with GPMBP dramatically inhibited the subsequent responses of THYB-2 hybrids yet had little or no effect upon the reactivity of THYB-1 hybrids. Fourth, thymocytes lacked necessary activities for GPMBP evoked IL-2 production by THYB-2 hybrids yet strongly promoted THYB-1 hybrid responses. Fifth, exposure of SPL to as little as 500 rad of gamma-irradiation markedly attenuated THYB-2 hybrid response to GPMBP but did not affect THYB-1 responses. Sixth, anti-GPMBP responses by THYB-2 hybrids were observed only in the presence of both radioresistant adherent SPL and a distinct population of radiosensitive nonadherent SPL

  15. Insights into the Activity and Substrate Binding of Xylella fastidiosa Polygalacturonase by Modification of a Unique QMK Amino Acid Motif Using Protein Chimeras.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, Jeremy G; Lincoln, James E; Kirkpatrick, Bruce C

    2015-01-01

    Polygalacturonases (EC 3.2.1.15) catalyze the random hydrolysis of 1, 4-alpha-D-galactosiduronic linkages in pectate and other galacturonans. Xylella fastidiosa possesses a single polygalacturonase gene, pglA (PD1485), and X. fastidiosa mutants deficient in the production of polygalacturonase are non-pathogenic and show a compromised ability to systemically infect grapevines. These results suggested that grapevines expressing sufficient amounts of an inhibitor of X. fastidiosa polygalacturonase might be protected from disease. Previous work in our laboratory and others have tried without success to produce soluble active X. fastidiosa polygalacturonase for use in inhibition assays. In this study, we created two enzymatically active X. fastidiosa / A. vitis polygalacturonase chimeras, AX1A and AX2A to explore the functionality of X. fastidiosa polygalacturonase in vitro. The AX1A chimera was constructed to specifically test if recombinant chimeric protein, produced in Escherichia coli, is soluble and if the X. fastidiosa polygalacturonase catalytic amino acids are able to hydrolyze polygalacturonic acid. The AX2A chimera was constructed to evaluate the ability of a unique QMK motif of X. fastidiosa polygalacturonase, most polygalacturonases have a R(I/L)K motif, to bind to and allow the hydrolysis of polygalacturonic acid. Furthermore, the AX2A chimera was also used to explore what effect modification of the QMK motif of X. fastidiosa polygalacturonase to a conserved RIK motif has on enzymatic activity. These experiments showed that both the AX1A and AX2A polygalacturonase chimeras were soluble and able to hydrolyze the polygalacturonic acid substrate. Additionally, the modification of the QMK motif to the conserved RIK motif eliminated hydrolytic activity, suggesting that the QMK motif is important for the activity of X. fastidiosa polygalacturonase. This result suggests X. fastidiosa polygalacturonase may preferentially hydrolyze a different pectic substrate or

  16. EVOLVING AN EMPIRICAL METHODOLOGY DOR DETERMINING ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The uniqueness of this approach, is that it can be applied to any forest or dynamic feature on the earth, and can enjoy universal application as well. KEY WORDS: Evolving empirical methodology, innovative mathematical model, appropriate interval, remote sensing, forest environment planning and management. Global Jnl ...

  17. 2S protein Ara h 7.0201 has unique epitopes compared to other Ara h 7 isoforms and is comparable to 2S proteins Ara h 2 and 6 in basophil degranulation capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayen, S M; Ehlers, A M; den Hartog Jager, C F; Garssen, J; Knol, E F; Knulst, A C; Suer, W; Willemsen, L E M; Otten, H G

    2018-07-01

    Screening for specific IgE against 2S albumin proteins Ara h 2 and 6 has good positive predictive value in diagnosing peanut allergy. From the third 2S member Ara h 7, 3 isoforms have been identified. Their allergenicity has not been elucidated. This study investigated the allergenicity of Ara h 7 isoforms compared to Ara h 2 and 6. Sensitization of 15 DBPCFC-confirmed peanut-allergic patients to recombinant Ara h 2.0201, Ara h 6.01 and isoforms of recombinant Ara h 7 was determined by IgE immunoblotting strips. A basophil activation test (BAT) was performed in 9 patients to determine IgE-cross-linking capacities of the allergens. Sensitivity to the allergens was tested in 5 patients who were sensitized to at least 1 Ara h 7 isoform, by a concentration range in the BAT. 3D prediction models and sequence alignments were used to visualize differences between isoforms and to predict allergenic epitope regions. Sensitization to Ara h 7.0201 was most frequent (80%) and showed to be equally potent as Ara h 2.0201 and 6.01 in inducing basophil degranulation. Sensitization to Ara h 7.0201 together with Ara h 2.0201 and/or 6.01 was observed, indicating the presence of unique epitopes compared to the other 2 isoforms. Differences between the 3 Ara h 7 isoforms were observed in C-terminal cysteine residues, pepsin and trypsin cleavage sites and 3 single amino acid substitutions. The majority of peanut-allergic patients are sensitized to isoform Ara h 7.0201, which is functionally as active as Ara h 2.0201 and 6.01. Unique epitopes are most likely located in the C-terminus or an allergenic loop region which is a known allergenic epitope region for Ara h 2.0201 and 6.01. Due to its unique epitopes and allergenicity, it is an interesting candidate to improve the diagnostic accuracy for peanut allergy. © 2018 The Authors. Clinical & Experimental Allergy Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Link of the unique oncogenic properties of adenovirus type 9 E4-ORF1 to a select interaction with the candidate tumor suppressor protein ZO-2

    OpenAIRE

    Glaunsinger, Britt A.; Weiss, Robert S.; Lee, Siu Sylvia; Javier, Ronald

    2001-01-01

    Adenovirus type 9 (Ad9) is distinct among human adenoviruses because it elicits solely mammary tumors in animals and its primary oncogenic determinant is the E4 region-encoded ORF1 (E4-ORF1) protein. We report here that the PDZ domain-containing protein ZO-2, which is a candidate tumor suppressor protein, is a cellular target for tumorigenic Ad9 E4-ORF1 but not for non-tumorigenic wild-type E4-ORF1 proteins encoded by adenovirus types 5 and 12. Complex formation was mediated by the C-terminal...

  19. Mentoring: An Evolving Relationship.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Block, Michelle; Florczak, Kristine L

    2017-04-01

    The column concerns itself with mentoring as an evolving relationship between mentor and mentee. The collegiate mentoring model, the transformational transcendence model, and the humanbecoming mentoring model are considered in light of a dialogue with mentors at a Midwest university and conclusions are drawn.

  20. Methods Evolved by Observation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montessori, Maria

    2016-01-01

    Montessori's idea of the child's nature and the teacher's perceptiveness begins with amazing simplicity, and when she speaks of "methods evolved," she is unveiling a methodological system for observation. She begins with the early childhood explosion into writing, which is a familiar child phenomenon that Montessori has written about…

  1. Interactively Evolving Compositional Sound Synthesis Networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jónsson, Björn Þór; Hoover, Amy K.; Risi, Sebastian

    2015-01-01

    the space of potential sounds that can be generated through such compositional sound synthesis networks (CSSNs). To study the effect of evolution on subjective appreciation, participants in a listener study ranked evolved timbres by personal preference, resulting in preferences skewed toward the first......While the success of electronic music often relies on the uniqueness and quality of selected timbres, many musicians struggle with complicated and expensive equipment and techniques to create their desired sounds. Instead, this paper presents a technique for producing novel timbres that are evolved...

  2. The Lysine Residues within the Human Ribosomal Protein S17 Sequence Naturally Inserted into the Viral Nonstructural Protein of a Unique Strain of Hepatitis E Virus Are Important for Enhanced Virus Replication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kenney, Scott P.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Hepatitis E virus (HEV) is an important but extremely understudied human pathogen. Due largely to the lack of an efficient cell culture system for HEV, the molecular mechanisms of HEV replication and pathogenesis are poorly understood. Recently, a unique genotype 3 strain of HEV recovered from a chronically infected patient was adapted for growth in HepG2C3A human hepatoma cells. The adaptation of the Kernow C-1 P6 HEV to propagate in HepG2C3A cells selected for a rare virus recombinant that contains an insertion of a 171-nucleotide sequence encoding amino acids 21 to 76 of the human ribosomal protein S17 (RPS17) within the hypervariable region (HVR) of the HEV ORF1 protein. When the RPS17 insertion was placed into a strain of genotype 1 HEV which infects only humans, it expanded the host range of the virus, allowing it to infect cell lines from multiple animal species, including cow, dog, cat, chicken, and hamster. In this study, we utilized forward and reverse genetics to attempt to define which aspects of the RPS17 insertion allow for the ability of the Kernow C-1 P6 HEV to adapt in cell culture and allow for expanded host tropism. We demonstrate that the RPS17 sequence insertion in HEV bestows novel nuclear/nucleolar trafficking capabilities to the ORF1 protein of Kernow P6 HEV and that lysine residues within the RPS17 insertion, but not nuclear localization of the ORF1 protein, correlate with the enhanced replication of the HEV Kernow C-1 P6 strain. The results from this study have important implications for understanding the mechanism of cross-species infection and replication of HEV. IMPORTANCE HEV is an important pathogen worldwide. The virus causes high mortality (up to 30%) in pregnant women and has been recognized to cause chronic hepatitis in immunocompromised populations. The life cycle of HEV has been understudied due to a lack of sufficient cell culture systems in which to propagate the virus. Recently, insertions and rearrangements of the

  3. Proteomic Analysis of Intact Flagella of Procyclic Trypanosoma brucei Cells Identifies Novel Flagellar Proteins with Unique Sub-localization and Dynamics*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Subota, Ines; Julkowska, Daria; Vincensini, Laetitia; Reeg, Nele; Buisson, Johanna; Blisnick, Thierry; Huet, Diego; Perrot, Sylvie; Santi-Rocca, Julien; Duchateau, Magalie; Hourdel, Véronique; Rousselle, Jean-Claude; Cayet, Nadège; Namane, Abdelkader; Chamot-Rooke, Julia; Bastin, Philippe

    2014-01-01

    Cilia and flagella are complex organelles made of hundreds of proteins of highly variable structures and functions. Here we report the purification of intact flagella from the procyclic stage of Trypanosoma brucei using mechanical shearing. Structural preservation was confirmed by transmission electron microscopy that showed that flagella still contained typical elements such as the membrane, the axoneme, the paraflagellar rod, and the intraflagellar transport particles. It also revealed that flagella severed below the basal body, and were not contaminated by other cytoskeletal structures such as the flagellar pocket collar or the adhesion zone filament. Mass spectrometry analysis identified a total of 751 proteins with high confidence, including 88% of known flagellar components. Comparison with the cell debris fraction revealed that more than half of the flagellum markers were enriched in flagella and this enrichment criterion was taken into account to identify 212 proteins not previously reported to be associated to flagella. Nine of these were experimentally validated including a 14-3-3 protein not yet reported to be associated to flagella and eight novel proteins termed FLAM (FLAgellar Member). Remarkably, they localized to five different subdomains of the flagellum. For example, FLAM6 is restricted to the proximal half of the axoneme, no matter its length. In contrast, FLAM8 is progressively accumulating at the distal tip of growing flagella and half of it still needs to be added after cell division. A combination of RNA interference and Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching approaches demonstrated very different dynamics from one protein to the other, but also according to the stage of construction and the age of the flagellum. Structural proteins are added to the distal tip of the elongating flagellum and exhibit slow turnover whereas membrane proteins such as the arginine kinase show rapid turnover without a detectible polarity. PMID:24741115

  4. Proteomic analysis of intact flagella of procyclic Trypanosoma brucei cells identifies novel flagellar proteins with unique sub-localization and dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Subota, Ines; Julkowska, Daria; Vincensini, Laetitia; Reeg, Nele; Buisson, Johanna; Blisnick, Thierry; Huet, Diego; Perrot, Sylvie; Santi-Rocca, Julien; Duchateau, Magalie; Hourdel, Véronique; Rousselle, Jean-Claude; Cayet, Nadège; Namane, Abdelkader; Chamot-Rooke, Julia; Bastin, Philippe

    2014-07-01

    Cilia and flagella are complex organelles made of hundreds of proteins of highly variable structures and functions. Here we report the purification of intact flagella from the procyclic stage of Trypanosoma brucei using mechanical shearing. Structural preservation was confirmed by transmission electron microscopy that showed that flagella still contained typical elements such as the membrane, the axoneme, the paraflagellar rod, and the intraflagellar transport particles. It also revealed that flagella severed below the basal body, and were not contaminated by other cytoskeletal structures such as the flagellar pocket collar or the adhesion zone filament. Mass spectrometry analysis identified a total of 751 proteins with high confidence, including 88% of known flagellar components. Comparison with the cell debris fraction revealed that more than half of the flagellum markers were enriched in flagella and this enrichment criterion was taken into account to identify 212 proteins not previously reported to be associated to flagella. Nine of these were experimentally validated including a 14-3-3 protein not yet reported to be associated to flagella and eight novel proteins termed FLAM (FLAgellar Member). Remarkably, they localized to five different subdomains of the flagellum. For example, FLAM6 is restricted to the proximal half of the axoneme, no matter its length. In contrast, FLAM8 is progressively accumulating at the distal tip of growing flagella and half of it still needs to be added after cell division. A combination of RNA interference and Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching approaches demonstrated very different dynamics from one protein to the other, but also according to the stage of construction and the age of the flagellum. Structural proteins are added to the distal tip of the elongating flagellum and exhibit slow turnover whereas membrane proteins such as the arginine kinase show rapid turnover without a detectible polarity. © 2014 by The

  5. EVOLVE 2014 International Conference

    CERN Document Server

    Tantar, Emilia; Sun, Jian-Qiao; Zhang, Wei; Ding, Qian; Schütze, Oliver; Emmerich, Michael; Legrand, Pierrick; Moral, Pierre; Coello, Carlos

    2014-01-01

    This volume encloses research articles that were presented at the EVOLVE 2014 International Conference in Beijing, China, July 1–4, 2014.The book gathers contributions that emerged from the conference tracks, ranging from probability to set oriented numerics and evolutionary computation; all complemented by the bridging purpose of the conference, e.g. Complex Networks and Landscape Analysis, or by the more application oriented perspective. The novelty of the volume, when considering the EVOLVE series, comes from targeting also the practitioner’s view. This is supported by the Machine Learning Applied to Networks and Practical Aspects of Evolutionary Algorithms tracks, providing surveys on new application areas, as in the networking area and useful insights in the development of evolutionary techniques, from a practitioner’s perspective. Complementary to these directions, the conference tracks supporting the volume, follow on the individual advancements of the subareas constituting the scope of the confe...

  6. Evolving Procurement Organizations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bals, Lydia; Laine, Jari; Mugurusi, Godfrey

    Procurement has to find further levers and advance its contribution to corporate goals continuously. This places pressure on its organization in order to facilitate its performance. Therefore, procurement organizations constantly have to evolve in order to match these demands. A conceptual model...... and external contingency factors and having a more detailed look at the structural dimensions chosen, beyond the well-known characteristics of centralization, formalization, participation, specialization, standardization and size. From a theoretical perspective, it opens up insights that can be leveraged...

  7. Symbiotic Composition and Evolvability

    OpenAIRE

    Watson, Richard A.; Pollack, Jordan B.

    2001-01-01

    Several of the Major Transitions in natural evolution, such as the symbiogenic origin of eukaryotes from prokaryotes, share the feature that existing entities became the components of composite entities at a higher level of organisation. This composition of pre-adapted extant entities into a new whole is a fundamentally different source of variation from the gradual accumulation of small random variations, and it has some interesting consequences for issues of evolvability. In this paper we p...

  8. Evolved H II regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Churchwell, E.

    1975-01-01

    A probable evolutionary sequence of H II regions based on six distinct types of observed objects is suggested. Two examples which may deviate from this idealized sequence, are discussed. Even though a size-mean density relation of H II regions can be used as a rough indication of whether a nebula is very young or evolved, it is argued that such a relation is not likely to be useful for the quantitative assignment of ages to H II regions. Evolved H II regions appear to fit into one of four structural types: rings, core-halos, smooth structures, and irregular or filamentary structures. Examples of each type are given with their derived physical parameters. The energy balance in these nebulae is considered. The mass of ionized gas in evolved H II regions is in general too large to trace the nebula back to single compact H II regions. Finally, the morphological type of the Galaxy is considered from its H II region content. 2 tables, 2 figs., 29 refs

  9. Western blot data using two distinct anti-O-GlcNAc monoclonal antibodies showing unique glycosylation status on cellular proteins under 2-deoxy-d-glucose treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tetsuya Okuda

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Protein modification by O-linked N-acetylglucosamine (O-GlcNAcylation is one of the post transcriptional modifications occurring on cellular proteins. This paper provides a data set relating to the O-GlcNAcylation of cellular proteins detected by RL2 and CTD110.6 antibodies, which are commonly used for detection of protein O-GlcNAcylation, in 2-deoxy-d-glucose (2DG-treated human teratocarcinoma NCCIT cells in support of the research article entitled “A novel, promoter-based, target-specific assay identifies 2-deoxy-d-glucose as an inhibitor of globotriaosylceramide biosynthesis” (Okuda et al., 2009 [1]. The main article described a suppressive effect of 2DG on an Sp1 target gene in NCCIT cells and discussed the relationship between the effect of 2DG and O-GlcNAcylation status of Sp1. The data in this paper complements this relationship by Western blotting and clearly showed that the 2DG treatment increased O-GlcNAcylation of cellular proteins in NCCIT cells, whereas the RL2 and CTD110.6 epitopes were detected in a different manner. The RL2 epitope was detected on Sp1 during 2DG treatment, and the level was transiently increased at 24 h. In contrast, the CTD110.6 epitope became detectable on Sp1 over 72 h after 2DG treatment, and then the other proteins containing CTD110.6 epitopes also appeared in the cell lysates and the anti-Sp1 antibody precipitates.

  10. Gene expression profile and immunological evaluation of unique hypothetical unknown proteins of Mycobacterium leprae by using quantitative real-time PCR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hee Jin; Prithiviraj, Kalyani; Groathouse, Nathan; Brennan, Patrick J; Spencer, John S

    2013-02-01

    The cell-mediated immunity (CMI)-based in vitro gamma interferon release assay (IGRA) of Mycobacterium leprae-specific antigens has potential as a promising diagnostic means to detect those individuals in the early stages of M. leprae infection. Diagnosis of leprosy is a major obstacle toward ultimate disease control and has been compromised in the past by the lack of specific markers. Comparative bioinformatic analysis among mycobacterial genomes identified potential M. leprae-specific proteins called "hypothetical unknowns." Due to massive gene decay and the prevalence of pseudogenes, it is unclear whether any of these proteins are expressed or are immunologically relevant. In this study, we performed cDNA-based quantitative real-time PCR to investigate the expression status of 131 putative open reading frames (ORFs) encoding hypothetical unknowns. Twenty-six of the M. leprae-specific antigen candidates showed significant levels of gene expression compared to that of ESAT-6 (ML0049), which is an important T cell antigen of low abundance in M. leprae. Fifteen of 26 selected antigen candidates were expressed and purified in Escherichia coli. The seroreactivity to these proteins of pooled sera from lepromatous leprosy patients and cavitary tuberculosis patients revealed that 9 of 15 recombinant hypothetical unknowns elicited M. leprae-specific immune responses. These nine proteins may be good diagnostic reagents to improve both the sensitivity and specificity of detection of individuals with asymptomatic leprosy.

  11. Isolation and characterization of BetaM protein encoded by ATP1B4 - a unique member of the Na,K-ATPase β-subunit gene family

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pestov, Nikolay B.; Zhao, Hao; Basrur, Venkatesha; Modyanov, Nikolai N.

    2011-01-01

    Highlights: → Structural properties of BetaM and Na,K-ATPase β-subunits are sharply different. → BetaM protein is concentrated in nuclear membrane of skeletal myocytes. → BetaM does not associate with a Na,K-ATPase α-subunit in skeletal muscle. → Polypeptide chain of the native BetaM is highly sensitive to endogenous proteases. → BetaM in neonatal muscle is a product of alternative splice mRNA variant B. -- Abstract: ATP1B4 genes represent a rare instance of the orthologous gene co-option that radically changed functions of encoded BetaM proteins during vertebrate evolution. In lower vertebrates, this protein is a β-subunit of Na,K-ATPase located in the cell membrane. In placental mammals, BetaM completely lost its ancestral role and through acquisition of two extended Glu-rich clusters into the N-terminal domain gained entirely new properties as a muscle-specific protein of the inner nuclear membrane possessing the ability to regulate gene expression. Strict temporal regulation of BetaM expression, which is the highest in late fetal and early postnatal myocytes, indicates that it plays an essential role in perinatal development. Here we report the first structural characterization of the native eutherian BetaM protein. It should be noted that, in contrast to structurally related Na,K-ATPase β-subunits, the polypeptide chain of BetaM is highly sensitive to endogenous proteases that greatly complicated its isolation. Nevertheless, using a complex of protease inhibitors, a sample of authentic BetaM was isolated from pig neonatal skeletal muscle by a combination of ion-exchange and lectin-affinity chromatography followed by SDS-PAGE. Results of the analysis of the BetaM tryptic digest using MALDI-TOF and ESI-MS/MS mass spectrometry have demonstrated that native BetaM in neonatal skeletal muscle is a product of alternative splice mRNA variant B and comprised of 351 amino acid residues. Isolated BetaM protein was also characterized by SELDI-TOF mass

  12. Isolation and characterization of BetaM protein encoded by ATP1B4 - a unique member of the Na,K-ATPase {beta}-subunit gene family

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pestov, Nikolay B. [Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, University of Toledo College of Medicine, 3000 Arlington Ave., Toledo, OH 43614 (United States); Shemyakin-Ovchinnikov Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Moscow 117997 (Russian Federation); Zhao, Hao [Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, University of Toledo College of Medicine, 3000 Arlington Ave., Toledo, OH 43614 (United States); Basrur, Venkatesha [Department of Pathology, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (United States); Modyanov, Nikolai N., E-mail: nikolai.modyanov@utoledo.edu [Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, University of Toledo College of Medicine, 3000 Arlington Ave., Toledo, OH 43614 (United States)

    2011-09-09

    Highlights: {yields} Structural properties of BetaM and Na,K-ATPase {beta}-subunits are sharply different. {yields} BetaM protein is concentrated in nuclear membrane of skeletal myocytes. {yields} BetaM does not associate with a Na,K-ATPase {alpha}-subunit in skeletal muscle. {yields} Polypeptide chain of the native BetaM is highly sensitive to endogenous proteases. {yields} BetaM in neonatal muscle is a product of alternative splice mRNA variant B. -- Abstract: ATP1B4 genes represent a rare instance of the orthologous gene co-option that radically changed functions of encoded BetaM proteins during vertebrate evolution. In lower vertebrates, this protein is a {beta}-subunit of Na,K-ATPase located in the cell membrane. In placental mammals, BetaM completely lost its ancestral role and through acquisition of two extended Glu-rich clusters into the N-terminal domain gained entirely new properties as a muscle-specific protein of the inner nuclear membrane possessing the ability to regulate gene expression. Strict temporal regulation of BetaM expression, which is the highest in late fetal and early postnatal myocytes, indicates that it plays an essential role in perinatal development. Here we report the first structural characterization of the native eutherian BetaM protein. It should be noted that, in contrast to structurally related Na,K-ATPase {beta}-subunits, the polypeptide chain of BetaM is highly sensitive to endogenous proteases that greatly complicated its isolation. Nevertheless, using a complex of protease inhibitors, a sample of authentic BetaM was isolated from pig neonatal skeletal muscle by a combination of ion-exchange and lectin-affinity chromatography followed by SDS-PAGE. Results of the analysis of the BetaM tryptic digest using MALDI-TOF and ESI-MS/MS mass spectrometry have demonstrated that native BetaM in neonatal skeletal muscle is a product of alternative splice mRNA variant B and comprised of 351 amino acid residues. Isolated BetaM protein was

  13. Members of the HCMV US12 family of predicted heptaspanning membrane proteins have unique intracellular distributions, including association with the cytoplasmic virion assembly complex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Das, Subhendu; Pellett, Philip E.

    2007-01-01

    The human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) US12 gene family is a group of 10 predicted seven-transmembrane domain proteins that have some features in common with G-protein-coupled receptors. Little is known of their patterns of expression, localization, or functional interactions. Here, we studied the intracellular localization of three US12 family members, US14, US17, and US18, with respect to various intracellular markers and the cytoplasmic virion assembly compartment (AC). The three proteins have distinct patterns of expression, which include associations with the AC. US14 is often distributed in a uniform granular manner throughout the cytoplasm, concentrating in the AC in some cells. US17 is expressed in a segmented manner, with its N-terminal domain localizing to the periphery of what we show here to be the AC and the C-terminal domain localizing to nuclei and the cytoplasm [Das, S., Skomorovska-Prokvolit, Y., Wang, F. Z., Pellett, P.E., 2006. Infection-dependent nuclear localization of US17, a member of the US12 family of human cytomegalovirus-encoded seven-transmembrane proteins. J. Virol. 80, 1191-1203]. Here, we show that the C-terminal domain is present at the center of the AC, in close association with markers of early endosomes; the N-terminal staining corresponds to an area stained by markers for the Golgi and trans-Golgi. US18 is distributed throughout the cytoplasm, concentrating in the AC at later stages of infection; it is localized more to the periphery of the AC than are US14 and US17C, in association with markers of the trans-Golgi. Although not detected in virions, their structures and localization in various zones within the AC suggest possible roles for these proteins in the process of virion maturation and egress

  14. Structure of Stenotrophomonas maltophilia FeoA complexed with zinc: a unique prokaryotic SH3-domain protein that possibly acts as a bacterial ferrous iron-transport activating factor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Su, Yi-Che; Chin, Ko-Hsin; Hung, Hui-Chih; Shen, Gwan-Han; Wang, Andrew H.-J.; Chou, Shan-Ho

    2010-01-01

    The crystal structure of FeoA from Stenotrophomonas maltophilia has been determined to a resolution of 1.7 Å using an Se single-wavelength anomalous dispersion (Se-SAD) approach and revealed a unique dimer cross-linked by two zinc ions and six chloride ions. Iron is vital to the majority of prokaryotes, with ferrous iron believed to be the preferred form for iron uptake owing to its much better solubility. The major route for bacterial ferrous iron uptake is found to be via an Feo (ferrous iron-transport) system comprising the three proteins FeoA, FeoB and FeoC. Although the structure and function of FeoB have received much attention recently, the roles played by FeoA and FeoC have been little investigated to date. Here, the tertiary structure of FeoA from Stenotrophomonas maltophilia (Sm), a vital opportunistic pathogen in immunodepressed hosts, is reported. The crystal structure of SmFeoA has been determined to a resolution of 1.7 Å using an Se single-wavelength anomalous dispersion (Se-SAD) approach. Although SmFeoA bears low sequence identity to eukaryotic proteins, its structure is found to adopt a eukaryotic SH3-domain-like fold. It also bears weak similarity to the C-terminal SH3 domain of bacterial DtxR (diphtheria toxin regulator), with some unique characteristics. Intriguingly, SmFeoA is found to adopt a unique dimer cross-linked by two zinc ions and six anions (chloride ions). Since FeoB has been found to contain a G-protein-like domain with low GTPase activity, FeoA may interact with FeoB through the SH3–G-protein domain interaction to act as a ferrous iron-transport activating factor

  15. Identification of the Ulex europaeus agglutinin-I-binding protein as a unique glycoform of the neural cell adhesion molecule in the olfactory sensory axons of adults rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pestean, A; Krizbai, I; Böttcher, H; Párducz, A; Joó, F; Wolff, J R

    1995-08-04

    Histochemical localization of two lectins, Ulex europaeus agglutinin-I (UEA-I) and Tetragonolobus purpureus (TPA), was studied in the olfactory bulb of adult rats. In contrast to TPA, UEA-I detected a fucosylated glycoprotein that is only present in the surface membranes of olfactory sensory cells including the whole course of their neurites up to the final arborization in glomeruli. Immunoblotting revealed that UEA-I binds specifically to a protein of 205 kDa, while TPA stains several other glycoproteins. Affinity chromatography with the use of a UEA-I column identified the 205 kDa protein as a glycoform of neural cell adhesion molecule (N-CAM), specific for the rat olfactory sensory nerves.

  16. How Genes Evolve

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    focus on ecological and evolutionary genetics of ... construction of phylogenetic trees from molecular data. More recently, use of ... 500 MVA- Bony fishes. Ca 100 MVA - .... functional or structural domain of the proteins e.g. tropomysine chain ...

  17. Increased expression of Matrix Metalloproteinase 9 in liver from NZB/W F1 mice received antibody against human parvovirus B19 VP1 unique region protein

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hsu Gwo-Jong

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Human parvovirus B19 infection has been postulated to the anti-phospholipid syndrome (APS in autoimmunity. However, the influence of anti-B19-VP1u antibody in autoimmune diseases is still obscure. Methods To elucidate the effect of anti-B19-VP1u antibodies in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE, passive transfer of rabbit anti-B19-VP1u IgG was injected intravenously into NZB/W F1 mice. Results Significant reduction of platelet count and prolonged thrombocytopenia time were detected in anti-B19-VP1u IgG group as compared to other groups, whereas significant increases of anti-B19-VP1u, anti-phospholipid (APhL, and anti-double strand DNA (dsDNA antibody binding activity were detected in anti-B19-VP1u group. Additionally, significant increases of matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP9 activity and protein expression were detected in B19-VP1u IgG group. Notably, phosphatidylinositol 3-phosphate kinase (PI3K and phosphorylated extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK proteins were involved in the induction of MMP9. Conclusion These experimental results firstly demonstrated the aggravated effects of anti-B19-VP1u antibody in disease activity of SLE.

  18. A Unique Set of the Burkholderia Collagen-Like Proteins Provides Insight into Pathogenesis, Genome Evolution and Niche Adaptation, and Infection Detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachert, Beth A; Choi, Soo J; Snyder, Anna K; Rio, Rita V M; Durney, Brandon C; Holland, Lisa A; Amemiya, Kei; Welkos, Susan L; Bozue, Joel A; Cote, Christopher K; Berisio, Rita; Lukomski, Slawomir

    2015-01-01

    Burkholderia pseudomallei and Burkholderia mallei, classified as category B priority pathogens, are significant human and animal pathogens that are highly infectious and broad-spectrum antibiotic resistant. Currently, the pathogenicity mechanisms utilized by Burkholderia are not fully understood, and correct diagnosis of B. pseudomallei and B. mallei infection remains a challenge due to limited detection methods. Here, we provide a comprehensive analysis of a set of 13 novel Burkholderia collagen-like proteins (Bucl) that were identified among B. pseudomallei and B. mallei select agents. We infer that several Bucl proteins participate in pathogenesis based on their noncollagenous domains that are associated with the components of a type III secretion apparatus and membrane transport systems. Homology modeling of the outer membrane efflux domain of Bucl8 points to a role in multi-drug resistance. We determined that bucl genes are widespread in B. pseudomallei and B. mallei; Fischer's exact test and Cramer's V2 values indicate that the majority of bucl genes are highly associated with these pathogenic species versus nonpathogenic B. thailandensis. We designed a bucl-based quantitative PCR assay which was able to detect B. pseudomallei infection in a mouse with a detection limit of 50 CFU. Finally, chromosomal mapping and phylogenetic analysis of bucl loci revealed considerable genomic plasticity and adaptation of Burkholderia spp. to host and environmental niches. In this study, we identified a large set of phylogenetically unrelated bucl genes commonly found in Burkholderia select agents, encoding predicted pathogenicity factors, detection targets, and vaccine candidates.

  19. Evolving Procurement Organizations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bals, Lydia; Laiho, Aki; Laine, Jari

    Procurement has to find further levers and advance its contribution to corporate goals continuously. This places pressure on its organization in order to facilitate its performance. Therefore, Procurement organizations constantly have to evolve in order to match these demands. A conceptual model...... is presented and results of a first case study discussed. The findings highlight the importance of taking a contingency perspective on Procurement organization, understanding the internal and internal contingency factors. From a theoretical perspective, it opens up insights that can be furthermore leveraged...... in future studies in the fields of hybrid procurement organizations, global sourcing organizations as well as international procurement offices (IPOs). From a practical standpoint, an assessment of external and internal contingencies provides the opportunity to consciously match organization to its...

  20. Diffusion between evolving interfaces

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Juntunen, Janne; Merikoski, Juha

    2010-01-01

    Diffusion in an evolving environment is studied by continuous-time Monte Carlo simulations. Diffusion is modeled by continuous-time random walkers on a lattice, in a dynamic environment provided by bubbles between two one-dimensional interfaces driven symmetrically towards each other. For one-dimensional random walkers constrained by the interfaces, the bubble size distribution dominates diffusion. For two-dimensional random walkers, it is also controlled by the topography and dynamics of the interfaces. The results of the one-dimensional case are recovered in the limit where the interfaces are strongly driven. Even with simple hard-core repulsion between the interfaces and the particles, diffusion is found to depend strongly on the details of the dynamical rules of particles close to the interfaces.

  1. Why did heterospory evolve?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petersen, Kurt B; Burd, Martin

    2017-08-01

    The primitive land plant life cycle featured the production of spores of unimodal size, a condition called homospory. The evolution of bimodal size distributions with small male spores and large female spores, known as heterospory, was an innovation that occurred repeatedly in the history of land plants. The importance of desiccation-resistant spores for colonization of the land is well known, but the adaptive value of heterospory has never been well established. It was an addition to a sexual life cycle that already involved male and female gametes. Its role as a precursor to the evolution of seeds has received much attention, but this is an evolutionary consequence of heterospory that cannot explain the transition from homospory to heterospory (and the lack of evolutionary reversal from heterospory to homospory). Enforced outcrossing of gametophytes has often been mentioned in connection to heterospory, but we review the shortcomings of this argument as an explanation of the selective advantage of heterospory. Few alternative arguments concerning the selective forces favouring heterospory have been proposed, a paucity of attention that is surprising given the importance of this innovation in land plant evolution. In this review we highlight two ideas that may lead us to a better understanding of why heterospory evolved. First, models of optimal resource allocation - an approach that has been used for decades in evolutionary ecology to help understand parental investment and other life-history patterns - suggest that an evolutionary increase in spore size could reach a threshold at which small spores yielding small, sperm-producing gametophytes would return greater fitness per unit of resource investment than would large spores and bisexual gametophytes. With the advent of such microspores, megaspores would evolve under frequency-dependent selection. This argument can account for the appearance of heterospory in the Devonian, when increasingly tall and complex

  2. Evolving a photosynthetic organelle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nakayama Takuro

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The evolution of plastids from cyanobacteria is believed to represent a singularity in the history of life. The enigmatic amoeba Paulinella and its 'recently' acquired photosynthetic inclusions provide a fascinating system through which to gain fresh insight into how endosymbionts become organelles. The plastids, or chloroplasts, of algae and plants evolved from cyanobacteria by endosymbiosis. This landmark event conferred on eukaryotes the benefits of photosynthesis - the conversion of solar energy into chemical energy - and in so doing had a huge impact on the course of evolution and the climate of Earth 1. From the present state of plastids, however, it is difficult to trace the evolutionary steps involved in this momentous development, because all modern-day plastids have fully integrated into their hosts. Paulinella chromatophora is a unicellular eukaryote that bears photosynthetic entities called chromatophores that are derived from cyanobacteria and has thus received much attention as a possible example of an organism in the early stages of organellogenesis. Recent studies have unlocked the genomic secrets of its chromatophore 23 and provided concrete evidence that the Paulinella chromatophore is a bona fide photosynthetic organelle 4. The question is how Paulinella can help us to understand the process by which an endosymbiont is converted into an organelle.

  3. Fat: an evolving issue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John R. Speakman

    2012-09-01

    Work on obesity is evolving, and obesity is a consequence of our evolutionary history. In the space of 50 years, we have become an obese species. The reasons why can be addressed at a number of different levels. These include separating between whether the primary cause lies on the food intake or energy expenditure side of the energy balance equation, and determining how genetic and environmental effects contribute to weight variation between individuals. Opinion on whether increased food intake or decreased energy expenditure drives the obesity epidemic is still divided, but recent evidence favours the idea that food intake, rather than altered expenditure, is most important. There is more of a consensus that genetics explains most (probably around 65% of weight variation between individuals. Recent advances in genome-wide association studies have identified many polymorphisms that are linked to obesity, yet much of the genetic variance remains unexplained. Finding the causes of this unexplained variation will be an impetus of genetic and epigenetic research on obesity over the next decade. Many environmental factors – including gut microbiota, stress and endocrine disruptors – have been linked to the risk of developing obesity. A better understanding of gene-by-environment interactions will also be key to understanding obesity in the years to come.

  4. Evolving a photosynthetic organelle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakayama, Takuro; Archibald, John M

    2012-04-24

    The evolution of plastids from cyanobacteria is believed to represent a singularity in the history of life. The enigmatic amoeba Paulinella and its 'recently' acquired photosynthetic inclusions provide a fascinating system through which to gain fresh insight into how endosymbionts become organelles.The plastids, or chloroplasts, of algae and plants evolved from cyanobacteria by endosymbiosis. This landmark event conferred on eukaryotes the benefits of photosynthesis--the conversion of solar energy into chemical energy--and in so doing had a huge impact on the course of evolution and the climate of Earth 1. From the present state of plastids, however, it is difficult to trace the evolutionary steps involved in this momentous development, because all modern-day plastids have fully integrated into their hosts. Paulinella chromatophora is a unicellular eukaryote that bears photosynthetic entities called chromatophores that are derived from cyanobacteria and has thus received much attention as a possible example of an organism in the early stages of organellogenesis. Recent studies have unlocked the genomic secrets of its chromatophore 23 and provided concrete evidence that the Paulinella chromatophore is a bona fide photosynthetic organelle 4. The question is how Paulinella can help us to understand the process by which an endosymbiont is converted into an organelle.

  5. Communicability across evolving networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grindrod, Peter; Parsons, Mark C; Higham, Desmond J; Estrada, Ernesto

    2011-04-01

    Many natural and technological applications generate time-ordered sequences of networks, defined over a fixed set of nodes; for example, time-stamped information about "who phoned who" or "who came into contact with who" arise naturally in studies of communication and the spread of disease. Concepts and algorithms for static networks do not immediately carry through to this dynamic setting. For example, suppose A and B interact in the morning, and then B and C interact in the afternoon. Information, or disease, may then pass from A to C, but not vice versa. This subtlety is lost if we simply summarize using the daily aggregate network given by the chain A-B-C. However, using a natural definition of a walk on an evolving network, we show that classic centrality measures from the static setting can be extended in a computationally convenient manner. In particular, communicability indices can be computed to summarize the ability of each node to broadcast and receive information. The computations involve basic operations in linear algebra, and the asymmetry caused by time's arrow is captured naturally through the noncommutativity of matrix-matrix multiplication. Illustrative examples are given for both synthetic and real-world communication data sets. We also discuss the use of the new centrality measures for real-time monitoring and prediction.

  6. Evolving Concepts of Asthma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ray, Anuradha; Wenzel, Sally E.

    2015-01-01

    Our understanding of asthma has evolved over time from a singular disease to a complex of various phenotypes, with varied natural histories, physiologies, and responses to treatment. Early therapies treated most patients with asthma similarly, with bronchodilators and corticosteroids, but these therapies had varying degrees of success. Similarly, despite initial studies that identified an underlying type 2 inflammation in the airways of patients with asthma, biologic therapies targeted toward these type 2 pathways were unsuccessful in all patients. These observations led to increased interest in phenotyping asthma. Clinical approaches, both biased and later unbiased/statistical approaches to large asthma patient cohorts, identified a variety of patient characteristics, but they also consistently identified the importance of age of onset of disease and the presence of eosinophils in determining clinically relevant phenotypes. These paralleled molecular approaches to phenotyping that developed an understanding that not all patients share a type 2 inflammatory pattern. Using biomarkers to select patients with type 2 inflammation, repeated trials of biologics directed toward type 2 cytokine pathways saw newfound success, confirming the importance of phenotyping in asthma. Further research is needed to clarify additional clinical and molecular phenotypes, validate predictive biomarkers, and identify new areas for possible interventions. PMID:26161792

  7. UKAEA'S evolving contract philosophy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nicol, R. D.

    2003-01-01

    The United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) has gone through fundamental change over the last ten years. At the heart of this change has been UKAEA's relationship with the contracting and supply market. This paper describes the way in which UKAEA actively developed the market to support the decommissioning programme, and how the approach to contracting has evolved as external pressures and demands have changed. UKAEA's pro-active approach to industry has greatly assisted the development of a healthy, competitive market for services supporting decommissioning in the UK. There have been difficult changes and many challenges along the way, and some retrenchment was necessary to meet regulatory requirements. Nevertheless, UKAEA has sustained a high level of competition - now measured in terms of competed spend as a proportion of competable spend - with annual out-turns consistently over 80%. The prime responsibility for market development will pass to the new Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) in 2005, as the owner, on behalf of the Government, of the UK's civil nuclear liabilities. The preparatory work for the NDA indicates that the principles established by UKAEA will be carried forward. (author)

  8. Unique Path Partitions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bessenrodt, Christine; Olsson, Jørn Børling; Sellers, James A.

    2013-01-01

    We give a complete classification of the unique path partitions and study congruence properties of the function which enumerates such partitions.......We give a complete classification of the unique path partitions and study congruence properties of the function which enumerates such partitions....

  9. Interferon-gamma up-regulates a unique set of proteins in human keratinocytes. Molecular cloning and expression of the cDNA encoding the RGD-sequence-containing protein IGUP I-5111

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Honoré, B; Leffers, H; Madsen, Peder

    1993-01-01

    AMP (Bt2cAMP), dibutyryl cGMP (Bt2cGMP)] and compounds known to affect keratinocytes [4 beta-phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA), retinoic acid, Ca2+, dexamethasone, lipopolysaccharides, foetal calf serum]. Protein IGUP I-5111 was selected for further studies as its level is affected by simian-virus-40......, which migrated with the AMA variant of keratinocyte protein IEF SSP 5111, is novel although it exhibits weak similarity to cytoskeletal proteins. IGUP I-5111 contains the RGD sequence found in many extracellular glycoprotein ligands of the integrin receptor family and it is found at least partially...... in the culture supernatant. Considering the presence of IFN-gamma in psoriatic plaques as well as its putative involvement in the pathophysiology of the disease it was of interest to determine whether the set of proteins was upregulated in these cells. Two-dimensional gel analysis of the protein phenotype of non-cultured...

  10. Uniqueness in time measurement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lorenzen, P.

    1981-01-01

    According to P. Janich a clock is defined as an apparatus in which a point ( hand ) is moving uniformly on a straight line ( path ). For the definition of uniformly first the scaling (as a constant ratio of velocities) is defined without clocks. Thereafter the uniqueness of the time measurement can be proved using the prove of scaling of all clocks. But the uniqueness can be defined without scaling, as it is pointed out here. (orig.) [de

  11. Disgust: Evolved function and structure

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tybur, J.M.; Lieberman, D.; Kurzban, R.; DeScioli, P.

    2013-01-01

    Interest in and research on disgust has surged over the past few decades. The field, however, still lacks a coherent theoretical framework for understanding the evolved function or functions of disgust. Here we present such a framework, emphasizing 2 levels of analysis: that of evolved function and

  12. Natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Graves, C.J.; Ros, V.I.D.; Stevenson, B.; Sniegowski, P.D.; Brisson, D.

    2013-01-01

    The hypothesis that evolvability - the capacity to evolve by natural selection - is itself the object of natural selection is highly intriguing but remains controversial due in large part to a paucity of direct experimental evidence. The antigenic variation mechanisms of microbial pathogens provide

  13. Evolving artificial metalloenzymes via random mutagenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Hao; Swartz, Alan M.; Park, Hyun June; Srivastava, Poonam; Ellis-Guardiola, Ken; Upp, David M.; Lee, Gihoon; Belsare, Ketaki; Gu, Yifan; Zhang, Chen; Moellering, Raymond E.; Lewis, Jared C.

    2018-03-01

    Random mutagenesis has the potential to optimize the efficiency and selectivity of protein catalysts without requiring detailed knowledge of protein structure; however, introducing synthetic metal cofactors complicates the expression and screening of enzyme libraries, and activity arising from free cofactor must be eliminated. Here we report an efficient platform to create and screen libraries of artificial metalloenzymes (ArMs) via random mutagenesis, which we use to evolve highly selective dirhodium cyclopropanases. Error-prone PCR and combinatorial codon mutagenesis enabled multiplexed analysis of random mutations, including at sites distal to the putative ArM active site that are difficult to identify using targeted mutagenesis approaches. Variants that exhibited significantly improved selectivity for each of the cyclopropane product enantiomers were identified, and higher activity than previously reported ArM cyclopropanases obtained via targeted mutagenesis was also observed. This improved selectivity carried over to other dirhodium-catalysed transformations, including N-H, S-H and Si-H insertion, demonstrating that ArMs evolved for one reaction can serve as starting points to evolve catalysts for others.

  14. Sense-encoded poly-GR dipeptide repeat proteins correlate to neurodegeneration and uniquely co-localize with TDP-43 in dendrites of repeat expanded C9orf72 amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saberi, Shahram; Stauffer, Jennifer E.; Jiang, Jie; Garcia, Sandra Diaz; Taylor, Amy E; Schulte, Derek; Ohkubo, Takuya; Schloffman, Cheyenne L.; Maldonado, Marcus; Baughn, Michael; Rodriguez, Maria J; Pizzo, Don; Cleveland, Don; Ravits, John

    2018-01-01

    Hexanucleotide repeat expansions in C9orf72 are the most common genetic cause of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (C9 ALS). The main hypothesized pathogenic mechanisms are C9orf72 haploinsufficiency and/or toxicity from one or more of bi-directionally transcribed repeat RNAs and their dipeptide repeat proteins (DPRs) poly-GP, poly-GA, poly-GR, poly-PR and poly-PA. Recently, nuclear import and/or export defects especially caused by arginine-containing poly-GR or poly-PR have been proposed as significant contributors to pathogenesis based on disease models. We quantitatively studied and compared DPRs, nuclear pore proteins and C9orf72 protein in clinically-related and clinically-unrelated regions of the central nervous system, and compared them to phosphorylated TDP-43 (pTDP-43), the hallmark protein of ALS. Of the five DPRs, only poly-GR was significantly abundant in clinically-related areas compared to unrelated areas (p<0.001), and formed dendritic-like aggregates in the motor cortex that co-localized with pTDP-43 (p<0.0001). While most poly-GR dendritic inclusions were pTDP-43-positive, only 4% of pTDP-43 dendritic inclusions were poly-GR-positive. Staining for arginine-containing poly-GR and poly-PR in nuclei of neurons produced signals that were not specific to C9 ALS. We could not detect significant differences of nuclear markers RanGap, Lamin B1, and Importin β1 in C9 ALS, although we observed subtle nuclear changes in ALS, both C9 and non-C9, compared to control. The C9orf72 protein itself was diffusely expressed in cytoplasm of large neurons and glia, and nearly 50% reduced, in both clinically-related frontal cortex and unrelated occipital cortex, but not in cerebellum. In summary, sense-encoded poly-GR DPR was unique, and localized to neurites and pTDP43 in motor regions of C9 ALS CNS. This is consistent with new emerging ideas about TDP-43 functions in dendrites. PMID:29196813

  15. Spacetimes containing slowly evolving horizons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kavanagh, William; Booth, Ivan

    2006-01-01

    Slowly evolving horizons are trapping horizons that are ''almost'' isolated horizons. This paper reviews their definition and discusses several spacetimes containing such structures. These include certain Vaidya and Tolman-Bondi solutions as well as (perturbatively) tidally distorted black holes. Taking into account the mass scales and orders of magnitude that arise in these calculations, we conjecture that slowly evolving horizons are the norm rather than the exception in astrophysical processes that involve stellar-scale black holes

  16. The roles of the RIIβ linker and N-terminal cyclic nucleotide-binding domain in determining the unique structures of the type IIβ protein kinase A: a small angle x-ray and neutron scattering study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumenthal, Donald K; Copps, Jeffrey; Smith-Nguyen, Eric V; Zhang, Ping; Heller, William T; Taylor, Susan S

    2014-10-10

    Protein kinase A (PKA) is ubiquitously expressed and is responsible for regulating many important cellular functions in response to changes in intracellular cAMP concentrations. The PKA holoenzyme is a tetramer (R2:C2), with a regulatory subunit homodimer (R2) that binds and inhibits two catalytic (C) subunits; binding of cAMP to the regulatory subunit homodimer causes activation of the catalytic subunits. Four different R subunit isoforms exist in mammalian cells, and these confer different structural features, subcellular localization, and biochemical properties upon the PKA holoenzymes they form. The holoenzyme containing RIIβ is structurally unique in that the type IIβ holoenzyme is much more compact than the free RIIβ homodimer. We have used small angle x-ray scattering and small angle neutron scattering to study the solution structure and subunit organization of a holoenzyme containing an RIIβ C-terminal deletion mutant (RIIβ(1-280)), which is missing the C-terminal cAMP-binding domain to better understand the structural organization of the type IIβ holoenzyme and the RIIβ domains that contribute to stabilizing the holoenzyme conformation. Our results demonstrate that compaction of the type IIβ holoenzyme does not require the C-terminal cAMP-binding domain but rather involves large structural rearrangements within the linker and N-terminal cyclic nucleotide-binding domain of the RIIβ homodimer. The structural rearrangements are significantly greater than seen previously with RIIα and are likely to be important in mediating short range and long range interdomain and intersubunit interactions that uniquely regulate the activity of the type IIβ isoform of PKA. © 2014 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  17. Lattices with unique complements

    CERN Document Server

    Saliĭ, V N

    1988-01-01

    The class of uniquely complemented lattices properly contains all Boolean lattices. However, no explicit example of a non-Boolean lattice of this class has been found. In addition, the question of whether this class contains any complete non-Boolean lattices remains unanswered. This book focuses on these classical problems of lattice theory and the various attempts to solve them. Requiring no specialized knowledge, the book is directed at researchers and students interested in general algebra and mathematical logic.

  18. Robustness to Faults Promotes Evolvability: Insights from Evolving Digital Circuits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milano, Nicola; Nolfi, Stefano

    2016-01-01

    We demonstrate how the need to cope with operational faults enables evolving circuits to find more fit solutions. The analysis of the results obtained in different experimental conditions indicates that, in absence of faults, evolution tends to select circuits that are small and have low phenotypic variability and evolvability. The need to face operation faults, instead, drives evolution toward the selection of larger circuits that are truly robust with respect to genetic variations and that have a greater level of phenotypic variability and evolvability. Overall our results indicate that the need to cope with operation faults leads to the selection of circuits that have a greater probability to generate better circuits as a result of genetic variation with respect to a control condition in which circuits are not subjected to faults.

  19. Evolved Minimal Frustration in Multifunctional Biomolecules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Röder, Konstantin; Wales, David J

    2018-05-25

    Protein folding is often viewed in terms of a funnelled potential or free energy landscape. A variety of experiments now indicate the existence of multifunnel landscapes, associated with multifunctional biomolecules. Here, we present evidence that these systems have evolved to exhibit the minimal number of funnels required to fulfil their cellular functions, suggesting an extension to the principle of minimum frustration. We find that minimal disruptive mutations result in additional funnels, and the associated structural ensembles become more diverse. The same trends are observed in an atomic cluster. These observations suggest guidelines for rational design of engineered multifunctional biomolecules.

  20. Is Life Unique?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abel, David L.

    2011-01-01

    Is life physicochemically unique? No. Is life unique? Yes. Life manifests innumerable formalisms that cannot be generated or explained by physicodynamics alone. Life pursues thousands of biofunctional goals, not the least of which is staying alive. Neither physicodynamics, nor evolution, pursue goals. Life is largely directed by linear digital programming and by the Prescriptive Information (PI) instantiated particularly into physicodynamically indeterminate nucleotide sequencing. Epigenomic controls only compound the sophistication of these formalisms. Life employs representationalism through the use of symbol systems. Life manifests autonomy, homeostasis far from equilibrium in the harshest of environments, positive and negative feedback mechanisms, prevention and correction of its own errors, and organization of its components into Sustained Functional Systems (SFS). Chance and necessity—heat agitation and the cause-and-effect determinism of nature’s orderliness—cannot spawn formalisms such as mathematics, language, symbol systems, coding, decoding, logic, organization (not to be confused with mere self-ordering), integration of circuits, computational success, and the pursuit of functionality. All of these characteristics of life are formal, not physical. PMID:25382119

  1. A neighbourhood evolving network model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cao, Y.J.; Wang, G.Z.; Jiang, Q.Y.; Han, Z.X.

    2006-01-01

    Many social, technological, biological and economical systems are best described by evolved network models. In this short Letter, we propose and study a new evolving network model. The model is based on the new concept of neighbourhood connectivity, which exists in many physical complex networks. The statistical properties and dynamics of the proposed model is analytically studied and compared with those of Barabasi-Albert scale-free model. Numerical simulations indicate that this network model yields a transition between power-law and exponential scaling, while the Barabasi-Albert scale-free model is only one of its special (limiting) cases. Particularly, this model can be used to enhance the evolving mechanism of complex networks in the real world, such as some social networks development

  2. canEvolve: a web portal for integrative oncogenomics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mehmet Kemal Samur

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE: Genome-wide profiles of tumors obtained using functional genomics platforms are being deposited to the public repositories at an astronomical scale, as a result of focused efforts by individual laboratories and large projects such as the Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA and the International Cancer Genome Consortium. Consequently, there is an urgent need for reliable tools that integrate and interpret these data in light of current knowledge and disseminate results to biomedical researchers in a user-friendly manner. We have built the canEvolve web portal to meet this need. RESULTS: canEvolve query functionalities are designed to fulfill most frequent analysis needs of cancer researchers with a view to generate novel hypotheses. canEvolve stores gene, microRNA (miRNA and protein expression profiles, copy number alterations for multiple cancer types, and protein-protein interaction information. canEvolve allows querying of results of primary analysis, integrative analysis and network analysis of oncogenomics data. The querying for primary analysis includes differential gene and miRNA expression as well as changes in gene copy number measured with SNP microarrays. canEvolve provides results of integrative analysis of gene expression profiles with copy number alterations and with miRNA profiles as well as generalized integrative analysis using gene set enrichment analysis. The network analysis capability includes storage and visualization of gene co-expression, inferred gene regulatory networks and protein-protein interaction information. Finally, canEvolve provides correlations between gene expression and clinical outcomes in terms of univariate survival analysis. CONCLUSION: At present canEvolve provides different types of information extracted from 90 cancer genomics studies comprising of more than 10,000 patients. The presence of multiple data types, novel integrative analysis for identifying regulators of oncogenesis, network

  3. Evolving phenotypic networks in silico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    François, Paul

    2014-11-01

    Evolved gene networks are constrained by natural selection. Their structures and functions are consequently far from being random, as exemplified by the multiple instances of parallel/convergent evolution. One can thus ask if features of actual gene networks can be recovered from evolutionary first principles. I review a method for in silico evolution of small models of gene networks aiming at performing predefined biological functions. I summarize the current implementation of the algorithm, insisting on the construction of a proper "fitness" function. I illustrate the approach on three examples: biochemical adaptation, ligand discrimination and vertebrate segmentation (somitogenesis). While the structure of the evolved networks is variable, dynamics of our evolved networks are usually constrained and present many similar features to actual gene networks, including properties that were not explicitly selected for. In silico evolution can thus be used to predict biological behaviours without a detailed knowledge of the mapping between genotype and phenotype. Copyright © 2014 The Author. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  4. Ranking in evolving complex networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, Hao; Mariani, Manuel Sebastian; Medo, Matúš; Zhang, Yi-Cheng; Zhou, Ming-Yang

    2017-05-01

    Complex networks have emerged as a simple yet powerful framework to represent and analyze a wide range of complex systems. The problem of ranking the nodes and the edges in complex networks is critical for a broad range of real-world problems because it affects how we access online information and products, how success and talent are evaluated in human activities, and how scarce resources are allocated by companies and policymakers, among others. This calls for a deep understanding of how existing ranking algorithms perform, and which are their possible biases that may impair their effectiveness. Many popular ranking algorithms (such as Google's PageRank) are static in nature and, as a consequence, they exhibit important shortcomings when applied to real networks that rapidly evolve in time. At the same time, recent advances in the understanding and modeling of evolving networks have enabled the development of a wide and diverse range of ranking algorithms that take the temporal dimension into account. The aim of this review is to survey the existing ranking algorithms, both static and time-aware, and their applications to evolving networks. We emphasize both the impact of network evolution on well-established static algorithms and the benefits from including the temporal dimension for tasks such as prediction of network traffic, prediction of future links, and identification of significant nodes.

  5. Cotton: A Massively Underutilized and Often Overlooked Protein and Biomass Resource

    Science.gov (United States)

    Every year the cotton crop on the planet produces about 11 million metric tons of protein. Unfortunately, the cotton plant has also evolved a chemical defense mechanism, a toxin (gossypol) that resides in tiny but visible pigment glands. Having a phenotypic marker for the toxin is unique and has all...

  6. Cosmic Biology How Life Could Evolve on Other Worlds

    CERN Document Server

    Irwin, Louis Neil

    2011-01-01

    It is very unlikely that little green humanoids are living on Mars. But what are the possible life forms that might exist in our Solar System and how might they have evolved? This uniquely authoritative and imaginative book on the possibilties for alien life addresses the intrinsic interest that we have about life on other worlds - reinforcing some of our assumptions and reshaping others. It introduces new possibilties that will enlarge our understanding of the issue overall, in particular the enormous range of environments and planetary conditions within which life might evolve. Cosmic Biology -discusses a broad range of possible environments where alien life might have evolved; -explains why carbon-based, water-borne life is more likely that its alternatives, but is not the only possiblity; -applies the principles of planetary science and modern biology to evolutionary scenarios on other worlds; -looks at the future fates of living systems, including those on Earth.

  7. Cancer: Unique to Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... A to Z › Cancer › Unique to Older Adults Font size A A A Print Share Glossary Unique ... group with other older people with the same type of cancer. Researchers have found that support groups ...

  8. Klebsiella pneumoniae Carbapenemase-2 (KPC-2), Substitutions at Ambler Position Asp179, and Resistance to Ceftazidime-Avibactam: Unique Antibiotic-Resistant Phenotypes Emerge from β-Lactamase Protein Engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, Melissa D; Winkler, Marisa L; Taracila, Magdalena A; Page, Malcolm G; Desarbre, Eric; Kreiswirth, Barry N; Shields, Ryan K; Nguyen, Minh-Hong; Clancy, Cornelius; Spellberg, Brad; Papp-Wallace, Krisztina M; Bonomo, Robert A

    2017-10-31

    The emergence of Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemases (KPCs), β-lactamases that inactivate "last-line" antibiotics such as imipenem, represents a major challenge to contemporary antibiotic therapies. The combination of ceftazidime (CAZ) and avibactam (AVI), a potent β-lactamase inhibitor, represents an attempt to overcome this formidable threat and to restore the efficacy of the antibiotic against Gram-negative bacteria bearing KPCs. CAZ-AVI-resistant clinical strains expressing KPC variants with substitutions in the Ω-loop are emerging. We engineered 19 KPC-2 variants bearing targeted mutations at amino acid residue Ambler position 179 in Escherichia coli and identified a unique antibiotic resistance phenotype. We focus particularly on the CAZ-AVI resistance of the clinically relevant Asp179Asn variant. Although this variant demonstrated less hydrolytic activity, we demonstrated that there was a prolonged period during which an acyl-enzyme intermediate was present. Using mass spectrometry and transient kinetic analysis, we demonstrated that Asp179Asn "traps" β-lactams, preferentially binding β-lactams longer than AVI owing to a decreased rate of deacylation. Molecular dynamics simulations predict that (i) the Asp179Asn variant confers more flexibility to the Ω-loop and expands the active site significantly; (ii) the catalytic nucleophile, S70, is shifted more than 1.5 Å and rotated more than 90°, altering the hydrogen bond networks; and (iii) E166 is displaced by 2 Å when complexed with ceftazidime. These analyses explain the increased hydrolytic profile of KPC-2 and suggest that the Asp179Asn substitution results in an alternative complex mechanism leading to CAZ-AVI resistance. The future design of novel β-lactams and β-lactamase inhibitors must consider the mechanistic basis of resistance of this and other threatening carbapenemases. IMPORTANCE Antibiotic resistance is emerging at unprecedented rates and threatens to reach crisis levels. One key

  9. The 'E' factor -- evolving endodontics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunter, M J

    2013-03-01

    Endodontics is a constantly developing field, with new instruments, preparation techniques and sealants competing with trusted and traditional approaches to tooth restoration. Thus general dental practitioners must question and understand the significance of these developments before adopting new practices. In view of this, the aim of this article, and the associated presentation at the 2013 British Dental Conference & Exhibition, is to provide an overview of endodontic methods and constantly evolving best practice. The presentation will review current preparation techniques, comparing rotary versus reciprocation, and question current trends in restoration of the endodontically treated tooth.

  10. The dynamically evolving nematocyst content of an anthozoan, a scyphozoan, and a hydrozoan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rachamim, Tamar; Morgenstern, David; Aharonovich, Dikla; Brekhman, Vera; Lotan, Tamar; Sher, Daniel

    2015-03-01

    Nematocytes, the stinging cells of cnidarians, are the most evolutionarily ancient venom apparatus. These nanosyringe-like weaponry systems reach pressures of approximately 150 atmospheres before discharging and punching through the outer layer of the prey or predator at accelerations of more than 5 million g, making them one of the fastest biomechanical events known. To gain better understanding of the function of the complex, phylum-specific nematocyst organelle, and its venom payload, we compared the soluble nematocyst's proteome from the sea anemone Anemonia viridis, the jellyfish Aurelia aurita, and the hydrozoan Hydra magnipapillata, each belonging to one of the three basal cnidarian lineages which diverged over 600 Ma. Although the basic morphological and functional characteristics of the nematocysts of the three organisms are similar, out of hundreds of proteins identified in each organism, only six are shared. These include structural proteins, a chaperone which may help maintain venon activity over extended periods, and dickkopf, an enigmatic Wnt ligand which may also serve as a toxin. Nevertheless, many protein domains are shared between the three organisms' nematocyst content suggesting common proteome functionalities. The venoms of Hydra and Aurelia appear to be functionally similar and composed mainly of cytotoxins and enzymes, whereas the venom of the Anemonia is markedly unique and based on peptide neurotoxins. Cnidarian venoms show evidence for functional recruitment, yet evidence for diversification through positive selection, common to other venoms, is lacking. The final injected nematocyst payload comprises a mixture of dynamically evolving proteins involved in the development, maturation, maintenance, and discharge of the nematocysts, which is unique to each organism and potentially to each nematocyst type. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved

  11. Symplectin evolved from multiple duplications in bioluminescent squid

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Francis, Warren R.; Christianson, Lynne M.; Haddock, Steven H.D.

    2017-01-01

    The squid Sthenoteuthis oualaniensis, formerly Symplectoteuthis oualaniensis, generates light using the luciferin coelenterazine and a unique enzyme, symplectin. Genetic information is limited for bioluminescent cephalopod species, so many proteins, including symplectin, occur in public databases...... functioning is conserved across essentially all members of the protein family, even those unlikely to be used for bioluminescence. Conversely, active site residues involved in pantetheinase catalysis are also conserved across essentially all of these proteins, suggesting that symplectin may have multiple...

  12. Peripartum hysterectomy: an evolving picture.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Turner, Michael J

    2012-02-01

    Peripartum hysterectomy (PH) is one of the obstetric catastrophes. Evidence is emerging that the role of PH in modern obstetrics is evolving. Improving management of postpartum hemorrhage and newer surgical techniques should decrease PH for uterine atony. Rising levels of repeat elective cesarean deliveries should decrease PH following uterine scar rupture in labor. Increasing cesarean rates, however, have led to an increase in the number of PHs for morbidly adherent placenta. In the case of uterine atony or rupture where PH is required, a subtotal PH is often sufficient. In the case of pathological placental localization involving the cervix, however, a total hysterectomy is required. Furthermore, the involvement of other pelvic structures may prospectively make the diagnosis difficult and the surgery challenging. If resources permit, PH for pathological placental localization merits a multidisciplinary approach. Despite advances in clinical practice, it is likely that peripartum hysterectomy will be more challenging for obstetricians in the future.

  13. Infrared spectroscopy of evolved objects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aitken, D.K.; Roche, P.F.

    1984-01-01

    In this review, the authors are concerned with spectroscopic observations of evolved objects made in the wavelength range 1-300μm. Spectroscopic observations can conveniently be divided into studies of narrow lines, bands and broader continua. The vibrational frequencies of molecular groups fall mainly in this spectral region and appear as vibration-rotation bands from the gas phase, and as less structured, but often broader, features from the solid state. Many ionic lines, including recombination lines of abundant species and fine structure lines of astrophysically important ions also appear in this region. The continuum can arise from a number of mechanisms - photospheric emission, radiation from dust, free-free transitions in ionized gas and non-thermal processes. (Auth.)

  14. Consciousness: a unique way of processing information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marchetti, Giorgio

    2018-02-08

    In this article, I argue that consciousness is a unique way of processing information, in that: it produces information, rather than purely transmitting it; the information it produces is meaningful for us; the meaning it has is always individuated. This uniqueness allows us to process information on the basis of our personal needs and ever-changing interactions with the environment, and consequently to act autonomously. Three main basic cognitive processes contribute to realize this unique way of information processing: the self, attention and working memory. The self, which is primarily expressed via the central and peripheral nervous systems, maps our body, the environment, and our relations with the environment. It is the primary means by which the complexity inherent to our composite structure is reduced into the "single voice" of a unique individual. It provides a reference system that (albeit evolving) is sufficiently stable to define the variations that will be used as the raw material for the construction of conscious information. Attention allows for the selection of those variations in the state of the self that are most relevant in the given situation. Attention originates and is deployed from a single locus inside our body, which represents the center of the self, around which all our conscious experiences are organized. Whatever is focused by attention appears in our consciousness as possessing a spatial quality defined by this center and the direction toward which attention is focused. In addition, attention determines two other features of conscious experience: periodicity and phenomenal quality. Self and attention are necessary but not sufficient for conscious information to be produced. Complex forms of conscious experiences, such as the various modes of givenness of conscious experience and the stream of consciousness, need a working memory mechanism to assemble the basic pieces of information selected by attention.

  15. Uniquely Strongly Clean Group Rings

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG XIU-LAN

    2012-01-01

    A ring R is called clean if every element is the sum of an idempotent and a unit,and R is called uniquely strongly clean (USC for short) if every element is uniquely the sum of an idempotent and a unit that commute.In this article,some conditions on a ring R and a group G such that RG is clean are given.It is also shown that if G is a locally finite group,then the group ring RG is USC if and only if R is USC,and G is a 2-group.The left uniquely exchange group ring,as a middle ring of the uniquely clean ring and the USC ring,does not possess this property,and so does the uniquely exchange group ring.

  16. Selaginella moellendoffii telomeres: conserved and unique features in an ancient land plant lineage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eugene V Shakirov

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Telomeres, the essential terminal regions of linear eukaryotic chromosomes, consist of G-rich DNA repeats bound by a plethora of associated proteins. While the general pathways of telomere maintenance are evolutionarily conserved, individual telomere complex components show remarkable variation between eukaryotic lineages and even within closely related species. The recent genome sequencing of the lycophyte Selaginella moellendoffii and the availability of an ever-increasing number of flowering plant genomes provides a unique opportunity to evaluate the molecular and functional evolution of telomere components from the early evolving non-seed plants to the more developmentally advanced angiosperms. Here we analyzed telomere sequence in S. moellendorffii and found it to consist of TTTAGGG repeats, typical of most plants. Telomere tracts in S. moellendorffii range from 1-5.5 kb, closely resembling Arabidopsis thaliana. We identified several S. moellendorffii genes encoding sequence homologues of proteins involved in telomere maintenance in other organisms, including CST complex components and the telomere-binding proteins POT1 and TRFL. Notable sequence similarities and differences were uncovered among the telomere-related genes in some of the plant lineages. Taken together, the data indicate that comparative analysis of the telomere complex in early diverging land plants such as S. moellendorffii and green algae will yield important insights into the evolution of telomeres and their protein constituents.

  17. CERN internal communication is evolving

    CERN Multimedia

    2016-01-01

    CERN news will now be regularly updated on the CERN People page (see here).      Dear readers, All over the world, communication is becoming increasingly instantaneous, with news published in real time on websites and social networks. In order to keep pace with these changes, CERN's internal communication is evolving too. From now on, you will be informed of what’s happening at CERN more often via the “CERN people” page, which will frequently be updated with news. The Bulletin is following this trend too: twice a month, we will compile the most important articles published on the CERN site, with a brand-new layout. You will receive an e-mail every two weeks as soon as this new form of the Bulletin is available. If you have interesting news or stories to share, tell us about them through the form at: https://communications.web.cern.ch/got-story-cern-website​. You can also find out about news from CERN in real time...

  18. Economies Evolve by Energy Dispersal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stanley Salthe

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Economic activity can be regarded as an evolutionary process governed by the 2nd law of thermodynamics. The universal law, when formulated locally as an equation of motion, reveals that a growing economy develops functional machinery and organizes hierarchically in such a way as to tend to equalize energy density differences within the economy and in respect to the surroundings it is open to. Diverse economic activities result in flows of energy that will preferentially channel along the most steeply descending paths, leveling a non-Euclidean free energy landscape. This principle of 'maximal energy dispersal‘, equivalent to the maximal rate of entropy production, gives rise to economic laws and regularities. The law of diminishing returns follows from the diminishing free energy while the relation between supply and demand displays a quest for a balance among interdependent energy densities. Economic evolution is dissipative motion where the driving forces and energy flows are inseparable from each other. When there are multiple degrees of freedom, economic growth and decline are inherently impossible to forecast in detail. Namely, trajectories of an evolving economy are non-integrable, i.e. unpredictable in detail because a decision by a player will affect also future decisions of other players. We propose that decision making is ultimately about choosing from various actions those that would reduce most effectively subjectively perceived energy gradients.

  19. Recommendation in evolving online networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Xiao; Zeng, An; Shang, Ming-Sheng

    2016-02-01

    Recommender system is an effective tool to find the most relevant information for online users. By analyzing the historical selection records of users, recommender system predicts the most likely future links in the user-item network and accordingly constructs a personalized recommendation list for each user. So far, the recommendation process is mostly investigated in static user-item networks. In this paper, we propose a model which allows us to examine the performance of the state-of-the-art recommendation algorithms in evolving networks. We find that the recommendation accuracy in general decreases with time if the evolution of the online network fully depends on the recommendation. Interestingly, some randomness in users' choice can significantly improve the long-term accuracy of the recommendation algorithm. When a hybrid recommendation algorithm is applied, we find that the optimal parameter gradually shifts towards the diversity-favoring recommendation algorithm, indicating that recommendation diversity is essential to keep a high long-term recommendation accuracy. Finally, we confirm our conclusions by studying the recommendation on networks with the real evolution data.

  20. Evolving Capabilities for Virtual Globes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glennon, A.

    2006-12-01

    Though thin-client spatial visualization software like Google Earth and NASA World Wind enjoy widespread popularity, a common criticism is their general lack of analytical functionality. This concern, however, is rapidly being addressed; standard and advanced geographic information system (GIS) capabilities are being developed for virtual globes--though not centralized into a single implementation or software package. The innovation is mostly originating from the user community. Three such capabilities relevant to the earth science, education, and emergency management communities are modeling dynamic spatial phenomena, real-time data collection and visualization, and multi-input collaborative databases. Modeling dynamic spatial phenomena has been facilitated through joining virtual globe geometry definitions--like KML--to relational databases. Real-time data collection uses short scripts to transform user-contributed data into a format usable by virtual globe software. Similarly, collaborative data collection for virtual globes has become possible by dynamically referencing online, multi-person spreadsheets. Examples of these functions include mapping flows within a karst watershed, real-time disaster assessment and visualization, and a collaborative geyser eruption spatial decision support system. Virtual globe applications will continue to evolve further analytical capabilities, more temporal data handling, and from nano to intergalactic scales. This progression opens education and research avenues in all scientific disciplines.

  1. DNA repair by the Ada protein of E. coli

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karran, P.; Hall, J.

    1988-01-01

    This paper discusses the Ada protein of E. coli which exemplifies the highly specialized nature of the enzymes which have evolved to repair DNA. According to the authors, this protein exhibits not only novel mechanistic features but also provides an apparently unique example of a strategy for controlling gene expression in E. coli. They report that knowledge of the properties and mode of action of the Ada protein has afforded insight into how human cells are affected by alkylating agents, including those used in chemotherapy

  2. The Exploitation of Evolving Resources

    CERN Document Server

    McGlade, Jacqueline; Law, Richard

    1993-01-01

    The impact of man on the biosphere is profound. Quite apart from our capacity to destroy natural ecosystems and to drive species to extinction, we mould the evolution of the survivors by the selection pressures we apply to them. This has implications for the continued health of our natural biological resources and for the way in which we seek to optimise yield from those resources. Of these biological resources, fish stocks are particularly important to mankind as a source of protein. On a global basis, fish stocks provide the major source of protein for human consumption from natural ecosystems, amounting to some seventy million tonnes in 1970. Although fisheries management has been extensively developed over the last century, it has not hitherto considered the evolutionary consequences of fishing activity. While this omission may not have been serious in the past, the ever increasing intensity of exploitation and the deteriorating health of fish stocks has generated an urgent need for a better understanding...

  3. Whey protein supplementation does not alter plasma branched-chained amino acid profiles but results in unique metabolomics patterns in obese women enrolled in an 8-week weight loss trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piccolo, Brian D; Comerford, Kevin B; Karakas, Sidika E; Knotts, Trina A; Fiehn, Oliver; Adams, Sean H

    2015-04-01

    It has been suggested that perturbations in branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) catabolism are associated with insulin resistance and contribute to elevated systemic BCAAs. Evidence in rodents suggests dietary protein rich in BCAAs can increase BCAA catabolism, but there is limited evidence in humans. We hypothesize that a diet rich in BCAAs will increase BCAA catabolism, which will manifest in a reduction of fasting plasma BCAA concentrations. The metabolome of 27 obese women with metabolic syndrome before and after weight loss was investigated to identify changes in BCAA metabolism using GC-time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Subjects were enrolled in an 8-wk weight-loss study including either a 20-g/d whey (whey group, n = 16) or gelatin (gelatin group, n = 11) protein supplement. When matched for total protein by weight, whey protein has 3 times the amount of BCAAs compared with gelatin protein. Postintervention plasma abundances of Ile (gelatin group: 637 ± 18, quantifier ion peak height ÷ 100; whey group: 744 ± 65), Leu (gelatin group: 1210 ± 33; whey group: 1380 ± 79), and Val (gelatin group: 2080 ± 59; whey group: 2510 ± 230) did not differ between treatment groups. BCAAs were significantly correlated with homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance at baseline (r = 0.52, 0.43, and 0.49 for Leu, Ile, and Val, respectively; all, P BCAA metabolism is, at best, only modestly affected at a whey protein supplementation dose of 20 g/d. Furthermore, the loss of an association between postintervention BCAA and homeostasis model assessment suggests that factors associated with calorie restriction or protein intake affect how plasma BCAAs relate to insulin sensitivity. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT00739479. © 2015 American Society for Nutrition.

  4. Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis: evolving concepts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryu, Jay H; Moua, Teng; Daniels, Craig E; Hartman, Thomas E; Yi, Eunhee S; Utz, James P; Limper, Andrew H

    2014-08-01

    Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) occurs predominantly in middle-aged and older adults and accounts for 20% to 30% of interstitial lung diseases. It is usually progressive, resulting in respiratory failure and death. Diagnostic criteria for IPF have evolved over the years, and IPF is currently defined as a disease characterized by the histopathologic pattern of usual interstitial pneumonia occurring in the absence of an identifiable cause of lung injury. Understanding of the pathogenesis of IPF has shifted away from chronic inflammation and toward dysregulated fibroproliferative repair in response to alveolar epithelial injury. Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is likely a heterogeneous disorder caused by various interactions between genetic components and environmental exposures. High-resolution computed tomography can be diagnostic in the presence of typical findings such as bilateral reticular opacities associated with traction bronchiectasis/bronchiolectasis in a predominantly basal and subpleural distribution, along with subpleural honeycombing. In other circumstances, a surgical lung biopsy may be needed. The clinical course of IPF can be unpredictable and may be punctuated by acute deteriorations (acute exacerbation). Although progress continues in unraveling the mechanisms of IPF, effective therapy has remained elusive. Thus, clinicians and patients need to reach informed decisions regarding management options including lung transplant. The findings in this review were based on a literature search of PubMed using the search terms idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and usual interstitial pneumonia, limited to human studies in the English language published from January 1, 2000, through December 31, 2013, and supplemented by key references published before the year 2000. Copyright © 2014 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Diabetes: Unique to Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Stroke Urinary Incontinence Related Documents PDF Choosing Wisely: Diabetes Tests and Treatments Download Related Video Join our e-newsletter! Aging & Health A to Z Diabetes Unique to Older Adults This section provides information ...

  6. Finding evolved stars in the inner Galactic disk with Gaia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quiroga-Nuñez, L. H.; van Langevelde, H. J.; Pihlström, Y. M.; Sjouwerman, L. O.; Brown, A. G. A.

    2018-04-01

    The Bulge Asymmetries and Dynamical Evolution (BAaDE) survey will provide positions and line-of-sight velocities of ~20, 000 evolved, maser bearing stars in the Galactic plane. Although this Galactic region is affected by optical extinction, BAaDE targets may have Gaia cross-matches, eventually providing additional stellar information. In an initial attempt to cross-match BAaDE targets with Gaia, we have found more than 5,000 candidates. Of these, we may expect half to show SiO emission, which will allow us to obtain velocity information. The cross-match is being refined to avoid false positives using different criteria based on distance analysis, flux variability, and color assessment in the mid- and near-IR. Once the cross-matches can be confirmed, we will have a unique sample to characterize the stellar population of evolved stars in the Galactic bulge, which can be considered fossils of the Milky Way formation.

  7. Whey protein supplementation does not alter plasma branched-chained amino acid profiles but results in unique metabolomics patterns in obese women enrolled in an 8-week weight loss trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Background: It has been suggested that perturbations in branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) catabolism are associated with insulin resistance and contribute to elevated systemic BCAAs. Evidence in rodents suggests dietary protein rich in BCAAs can increase BCAA catabolism, but there is limited evidence...

  8. Introduction to protein blotting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurien, Biji T; Scofield, R Hal

    2009-01-01

    Protein blotting is a powerful and important procedure for the immunodetection of proteins following electrophoresis, particularly proteins that are of low abundance. Since the inception of the protocol for protein transfer from an electrophoresed gel to a membrane in 1979, protein blotting has evolved greatly. The scientific community is now confronted with a variety of ways and means to carry out this transfer.

  9. Evolving expectations from international organisations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ruiz Lopez, C.

    2008-01-01

    The author stated that implementation of the geological disposal concept requires a strategy that provides national decision makers with sufficient confidence in the level of long-term safety and protection ultimately achieved. The concept of protection against harm has a broader meaning than radiological protection in terms of risk and dose. It includes the protection of the environment and socio-economic interests of communities. She recognised that a number of countries have established regulatory criteria already, and others are now discussing what constitutes a proper regulatory test and suitable time frame for judging the safety of long-term disposal. Each regulatory programme seeks to define reasonable tests of repository performance, using protection criteria and safety approaches consistent with the culture, values and expectations of the citizens of the country concerned. This means that there are differences in how protection and safety are addressed in national approaches to regulation and in the bases used for that. However, as was recognised in the Cordoba Workshop, it would be important to reach a minimum level of consistency and be able to explain the differences. C. Ruiz-Lopez presented an overview of the development of international guidance from ICRP, IAEA and NEA from the Cordoba workshop up to now, and positions of independent National Advisory Bodies. The evolution of these guidelines over time demonstrates an evolving understanding of long-term implications, with the recognition that dose and risk constraints should not be seen as measures of detriment beyond a few hundred years, the emphasis on sound engineering practices, and the introduction of new concepts and approaches which take into account social and economical aspects (e.g. constrained optimisation, BAT, managerial principles). In its new recommendations, ICRP (draft 2006) recognizes. in particular, that decision making processes may depend on other societal concerns and considers

  10. The liberal illusion of uniqueness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Chadly; West, Tessa V; Schmitt, Peter G

    2014-01-01

    In two studies, we demonstrated that liberals underestimate their similarity to other liberals (i.e., display truly false uniqueness), whereas moderates and conservatives overestimate their similarity to other moderates and conservatives (i.e., display truly false consensus; Studies 1 and 2). We further demonstrated that a fundamental difference between liberals and conservatives in the motivation to feel unique explains this ideological distinction in the accuracy of estimating similarity (Study 2). Implications of the accuracy of consensus estimates for mobilizing liberal and conservative political movements are discussed.

  11. Delineating slowly and rapidly evolving fractions of the Drosophila genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keith, Jonathan M; Adams, Peter; Stephen, Stuart; Mattick, John S

    2008-05-01

    Evolutionary conservation is an important indicator of function and a major component of bioinformatic methods to identify non-protein-coding genes. We present a new Bayesian method for segmenting pairwise alignments of eukaryotic genomes while simultaneously classifying segments into slowly and rapidly evolving fractions. We also describe an information criterion similar to the Akaike Information Criterion (AIC) for determining the number of classes. Working with pairwise alignments enables detection of differences in conservation patterns among closely related species. We analyzed three whole-genome and three partial-genome pairwise alignments among eight Drosophila species. Three distinct classes of conservation level were detected. Sequences comprising the most slowly evolving component were consistent across a range of species pairs, and constituted approximately 62-66% of the D. melanogaster genome. Almost all (>90%) of the aligned protein-coding sequence is in this fraction, suggesting much of it (comprising the majority of the Drosophila genome, including approximately 56% of non-protein-coding sequences) is functional. The size and content of the most rapidly evolving component was species dependent, and varied from 1.6% to 4.8%. This fraction is also enriched for protein-coding sequence (while containing significant amounts of non-protein-coding sequence), suggesting it is under positive selection. We also classified segments according to conservation and GC content simultaneously. This analysis identified numerous sub-classes of those identified on the basis of conservation alone, but was nevertheless consistent with that classification. Software, data, and results available at www.maths.qut.edu.au/-keithj/. Genomic segments comprising the conservation classes available in BED format.

  12. Evolving Technologies: A View to Tomorrow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamarkin, Molly; Rodrigo, Shelley

    2011-01-01

    Technology leaders must participate in strategy creation as well as operational delivery within higher education institutions. The future of higher education--the view to tomorrow--is irrevocably integrated and intertwined with evolving technologies. This article focuses on two specific evolving technologies: (1) alternative IT sourcing; and (2)…

  13. Intermediate filament protein evolution and protists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Preisner, Harald; Habicht, Jörn; Garg, Sriram G; Gould, Sven B

    2018-03-23

    Metazoans evolved from a single protist lineage. While all eukaryotes share a conserved actin and tubulin-based cytoskeleton, it is commonly perceived that intermediate filaments (IFs), including lamin, vimentin or keratin among many others, are restricted to metazoans. Actin and tubulin proteins are conserved enough to be detectable across all eukaryotic genomes using standard phylogenetic methods, but IF proteins, in contrast, are notoriously difficult to identify by such means. Since the 1950s, dozens of cytoskeletal proteins in protists have been identified that seemingly do not belong to any of the IF families described for metazoans, yet, from a structural and functional perspective fit criteria that define metazoan IF proteins. Here, we briefly review IF protein discovery in metazoans and the implications this had for the definition of this protein family. We argue that the many cytoskeletal and filament-forming proteins of protists should be incorporated into a more comprehensive picture of IF evolution by aligning it with the recent identification of lamins across the phylogenetic diversity of eukaryotic supergroups. This then brings forth the question of how the diversity of IF proteins has unfolded. The evolution of IF proteins likely represents an example of convergent evolution, which, in combination with the speed with which these cytoskeletal proteins are evolving, generated their current diversity. IF proteins did not first emerge in metazoa, but in protists. Only the emergence of cytosolic IF proteins that appear to stem from a nuclear lamin is unique to animals and coincided with the emergence of true animal multicellularity. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Evolvability Search: Directly Selecting for Evolvability in order to Study and Produce It

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mengistu, Henok; Lehman, Joel Anthony; Clune, Jeff

    2016-01-01

    of evolvable digital phenotypes. Although some types of selection in evolutionary computation indirectly encourage evolvability, one unexplored possibility is to directly select for evolvability. To do so, we estimate an individual's future potential for diversity by calculating the behavioral diversity of its...... immediate offspring, and select organisms with increased offspring variation. While the technique is computationally expensive, we hypothesized that direct selection would better encourage evolvability than indirect methods. Experiments in two evolutionary robotics domains confirm this hypothesis: in both...... domains, such Evolvability Search produces solutions with higher evolvability than those produced with Novelty Search or traditional objective-based search algorithms. Further experiments demonstrate that the higher evolvability produced by Evolvability Search in a training environment also generalizes...

  15. Long-term intake of a high prebiotic fiber diet but not high protein reduces metabolic risk after a high fat challenge and uniquely alters gut microbiota and hepatic gene expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saha, Dolan C; Reimer, Raylene A

    2014-09-01

    A mismatch between early developmental diet and adulthood may increase obesity risk. Our objective was to determine the effects of re-matching rats to their weaning diets high in protein or fiber after transient high-fat/high-sucrose challenge in adulthood. We hypothesize that a long-term high fiber diet will be associated with a gut microbiota and hepatic gene expression reflective of reduced adiposity. Wistar rat pups were fed a control (C), high prebiotic fiber (HF), or high protein (HP) diet from 3-15 weeks of age; a high-fat/high-sucrose diet from 15-21 weeks; their respective C, HF, or HP diets from 21-25 weeks. Gut microbiota of cecal contents and hepatic gene expression were measured when rats were terminated at 25 weeks of age. HF rats had higher total bacteria, bifidobacteria and Bacteroides/Prevotella spp than C and HP at 25 weeks (P diet attenuated the typical increase in Firmicutes:Bacteroidetes ratio associated with consumption of a high fat diet. Lower hepatic cholesterol with long-term HF diet intake may be related to alterations in gut microbiota and hepatic lipid metabolism. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Evolving the Evolving: Territory, Place and Rewilding in the California Delta

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brett Milligan

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Current planning and legislation in California’s Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta call for the large-scale ecological restoration of aquatic and terrestrial habitats. These ecological mandates have emerged in response to the region’s infrastructural transformation and the Delta’s predominant use as the central logistical hub in the state’s vast water conveyance network. Restoration is an attempt to recover what was externalized by the logic and abstractions of this logistical infrastructure. However, based on findings from our research, which examined how people are using restored and naturalized landscapes in the Delta and how these landscapes are currently planned for, we argue that as mitigatory response, restoration planning continues some of the same spatial abstractions and inequities by failing to account for the Delta as an urbanized, cultural and unique place. In interpreting how these conditions have come to be, we give attention to a pluralistic landscape approach and a coevolutionary reading of planning, policy, science and landscapes to discuss the conservation challenges presented by “Delta as an Evolving Place”. We suggest that for rewilding efforts to be successful in the Delta, a range of proactive, opportunistic, grounded and participatory tactics will be required to shift towards a more socio-ecological approach.

  17. Petunia nectar proteins have ribonuclease activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hillwig, Melissa S; Liu, Xiaoteng; Liu, Guangyu; Thornburg, Robert W; Macintosh, Gustavo C

    2010-06-01

    Plants requiring an insect pollinator often produce nectar as a reward for the pollinator's visitations. This rich secretion needs mechanisms to inhibit microbial growth. In Nicotiana spp. nectar, anti-microbial activity is due to the production of hydrogen peroxide. In a close relative, Petunia hybrida, limited production of hydrogen peroxide was found; yet petunia nectar still has anti-bacterial properties, suggesting that a different mechanism may exist for this inhibition. The nectar proteins of petunia plants were compared with those of ornamental tobacco and significant differences were found in protein profiles and function between these two closely related species. Among those proteins, RNase activities unique to petunia nectar were identified. The genes corresponding to four RNase T2 proteins from Petunia hybrida that show unique expression patterns in different plant tissues were cloned. Two of these enzymes, RNase Phy3 and RNase Phy4 are unique among the T2 family and contain characteristics similar to both S- and S-like RNases. Analysis of amino acid patterns suggest that these proteins are an intermediate between S- and S-like RNases, and support the hypothesis that S-RNases evolved from defence RNases expressed in floral parts. This is the first report of RNase activities in nectar.

  18. A Unique Civil Engineering Capstone Design Course

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G Padmanabhan

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The North Dakota State University, USA, capstone course was developed as a unique model in response to the effort of the Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology, USA, to streamline and improve design instruction in the curriculum and has steadily evolved to keep pace with the ever-changing technology and the expectations of the profession and the society we serve. A capstone design course by definition should be a design experience for students in the final year before graduation integrating all major design concepts they have learned up until then in the program. Carefully chosen real world projects with design content in all sub-disciplines of civil engineering are assigned in this team-taught course. Faculty and practicing professionals make presentations on design process; project management; leadership in an engineering environment; and public policy; global perspectives in engineering; and professional career and licensure. Practicing professionals also critique the final student presentations. Students work in teams with number of faculty serving as technical consultants, and a faculty mentor for each team to provide non-technical guidance and direction. The course requires students to demonstrate mastery of the curriculum and to work with others in a team environment. Course assessment includes evaluation of the final design, presentations, written technical reports, project design schedule, a project design journal, and reaction papers.

  19. Evolved Representation and Computational Creativity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashraf Fouad Hafez Ismail

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available Advances in science and technology have influenced designing activity in architecture throughout its history. Observing the fundamental changes to architectural designing due to the substantial influences of the advent of the computing era, we now witness our design environment gradually changing from conventional pencil and paper to digital multi-media. Although designing is considered to be a unique human activity, there has always been a great dependency on design aid tools. One of the greatest aids to architectural design, amongst the many conventional and widely accepted computational tools, is the computer-aided object modeling and rendering tool, commonly known as a CAD package. But even though conventional modeling tools have provided designers with fast and precise object handling capabilities that were not available in the pencil-and-paper age, they normally show weaknesses and limitations in covering the whole design process.In any kind of design activity, the design worked on has to be represented in some way. For a human designer, designs are for example represented using models, drawings, or verbal descriptions. If a computer is used for design work, designs are usually represented by groups of pixels (paintbrush programs, lines and shapes (general-purpose CAD programs or higher-level objects like ‘walls’ and ‘rooms’ (purpose-specific CAD programs.A human designer usually has a large number of representations available, and can use the representation most suitable for what he or she is working on. Humans can also introduce new representations and thereby represent objects that are not part of the world they experience with their sensory organs, for example vector representations of four and five dimensional objects. In design computing on the other hand, the representation or representations used have to be explicitly defined. Many different representations have been suggested, often optimized for specific design domains

  20. Structure-activity relationships of the unique and potent agouti-related protein (AGRP)-melanocortin chimeric Tyr-c[beta-Asp-His-DPhe-Arg-Trp-Asn-Ala-Phe-Dpr]-Tyr-NH2 peptide template.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilczynski, Andrzej; Wilson, Krista R; Scott, Joseph W; Edison, Arthur S; Haskell-Luevano, Carrie

    2005-04-21

    The melanocortin receptor system consists of endogenous agonists, antagonists, G-protein coupled receptors, and auxiliary proteins that are involved in the regulation of complex physiological functions such as energy and weight homeostasis, feeding behavior, inflammation, sexual function, pigmentation, and exocrine gland function. Herein, we report the structure-activity relationship (SAR) of a new chimeric hAGRP-melanocortin agonist peptide template Tyr-c[beta-Asp-His-DPhe-Arg-Trp-Asn-Ala-Phe-Dpr]-Tyr-NH(2) that was characterized using amino acids previously reported in other melanocortin agonist templates. Twenty peptides were examined in this study, and six peptides were selected for (1)H NMR and computer-assisted molecular modeling structural analysis. The most notable results include the identification that modification of the chimeric template at the His position with Pro and Phe resulted in ligands that were nM mouse melanocortin-3 receptor (mMC3R) antagonists and nM mouse melanocortin-4 receptor (mMC4R) agonists. The peptides Tyr-c[beta-Asp-His-DPhe-Ala-Trp-Asn-Ala-Phe-Dpr]-Tyr-NH(2) and Tyr-c[beta-Asp-His-DNal(1')-Arg-Trp-Asn-Ala-Phe-Dpr]-Tyr-NH(2) resulted in 730- and 560-fold, respectively, mMC4R versus mMC3R selective agonists that also possessed nM agonist potency at the mMC1R and mMC5R. Structural studies identified a reverse turn occurring in the His-DPhe-Arg-Trp domain, with subtle differences observed that may account for the differences in melanocortin receptor pharmacology. Specifically, a gamma-turn secondary structure involving the DPhe(4) in the central position of the Tyr-c[beta-Asp-Phe-DPhe-Arg-Trp-Asn-Ala-Phe-Dpr]-Tyr-NH(2) peptide may differentiate the mixed mMC3R antagonist and mMC4R agonist pharmacology.

  1. Klebsiella pneumoniae Carbapenemase-2 (KPC-2, Substitutions at Ambler Position Asp179, and Resistance to Ceftazidime-Avibactam: Unique Antibiotic-Resistant Phenotypes Emerge from β-Lactamase Protein Engineering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa D. Barnes

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The emergence of Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemases (KPCs, β-lactamases that inactivate “last-line” antibiotics such as imipenem, represents a major challenge to contemporary antibiotic therapies. The combination of ceftazidime (CAZ and avibactam (AVI, a potent β-lactamase inhibitor, represents an attempt to overcome this formidable threat and to restore the efficacy of the antibiotic against Gram-negative bacteria bearing KPCs. CAZ-AVI-resistant clinical strains expressing KPC variants with substitutions in the Ω-loop are emerging. We engineered 19 KPC-2 variants bearing targeted mutations at amino acid residue Ambler position 179 in Escherichia coli and identified a unique antibiotic resistance phenotype. We focus particularly on the CAZ-AVI resistance of the clinically relevant Asp179Asn variant. Although this variant demonstrated less hydrolytic activity, we demonstrated that there was a prolonged period during which an acyl-enzyme intermediate was present. Using mass spectrometry and transient kinetic analysis, we demonstrated that Asp179Asn “traps” β-lactams, preferentially binding β-lactams longer than AVI owing to a decreased rate of deacylation. Molecular dynamics simulations predict that (i the Asp179Asn variant confers more flexibility to the Ω-loop and expands the active site significantly; (ii the catalytic nucleophile, S70, is shifted more than 1.5 Å and rotated more than 90°, altering the hydrogen bond networks; and (iii E166 is displaced by 2 ÅÅ when complexed with ceftazidime. These analyses explain the increased hydrolytic profile of KPC-2 and suggest that the Asp179Asn substitution results in an alternative complex mechanism leading to CAZ-AVI resistance. The future design of novel β-lactams and β-lactamase inhibitors must consider the mechanistic basis of resistance of this and other threatening carbapenemases.

  2. Kosovo case: A unique arbitrariness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nakarada Radmila

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available The end of Cold war, contrary to expectations has brought new conflicts and forms of violence, new divisions and new relativizations of the international legal order. Taking as an example the endeavors to resolve the Kosovo conflict, the author attempts to indicate the broader implications of the international efforts to constitute an independent state on part of the territory of an existing sovereign state. The arguments used to justify the redefinition of the borders of the Serbian state without its consent, the moral, democratic, peace arguments, are reviewed. Particular attention is paid to the argument that Kosovo is a unique case and therefore unique rules should be applied. The author seeks to understand the deeper significance of these efforts, concluding that dismantling the present international legal order is not only a potential danger but a possible aim.

  3. Uniqueness theorems in linear elasticity

    CERN Document Server

    Knops, Robin John

    1971-01-01

    The classical result for uniqueness in elasticity theory is due to Kirchhoff. It states that the standard mixed boundary value problem for a homogeneous isotropic linear elastic material in equilibrium and occupying a bounded three-dimensional region of space possesses at most one solution in the classical sense, provided the Lame and shear moduli, A and J1 respectively, obey the inequalities (3 A + 2 J1) > 0 and J1>O. In linear elastodynamics the analogous result, due to Neumann, is that the initial-mixed boundary value problem possesses at most one solution provided the elastic moduli satisfy the same set of inequalities as in Kirchhoffs theorem. Most standard textbooks on the linear theory of elasticity mention only these two classical criteria for uniqueness and neglect altogether the abundant literature which has appeared since the original publications of Kirchhoff. To remedy this deficiency it seems appropriate to attempt a coherent description ofthe various contributions made to the study of uniquenes...

  4. Enterovirus Exposure Uniquely Discriminates Type 1 Diabetes Patients with a Homozygous from a Heterozygous Melanoma Differentiation-Associated Protein 5/Interferon Induced with Helicase C Domain 1 A946T Genotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulte, Barbara M; Gielen, Paul R; Kers-Rebel, Esther D; Prosser, Amy C; Lind, Katharina; Flodström-Tullberg, Malin; Tack, Cees J; Elving, Lammy D; Adema, Gosse J

    2016-09-01

    In children at risk for type 1 diabetes, innate immune activity is detected before seroconversion. Enterovirus infections have been linked to diabetes development, and a polymorphism (A946T) in the innate immune sensor recognizing enterovirus RNA, interferon-induced with helicase C domain 1/melanoma differentiation-associated protein 5, predisposes to disease. We hypothesized that the strength of innate antienteroviral responses is affected in autoimmune type 1 diabetes patients and linked to the A946T polymorphism. We compared induction of interferon-stimulated genes (ISGs) in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and dendritic cells (DCs) in healthy individuals and diabetes patients upon stimulation with enterovirus, enterovirus-antibody complexes, or ligands mimicking infection in relation to the A946T polymorphism. Overall, PBMCs of diabetes patients and healthy donors showed comparable ISG induction upon stimulation. No differences were observed in DCs. Interestingly, the data imply that the magnitude of responses to enterovirus and enterovirus-antibody complexes in PBMCs is critically influenced by the A946T polymorphism and elevated in heterozygotes compared to TT homozygous individuals in autoimmune diabetes patients, but not healthy controls. These data imply an intrinsic difference in the responses to enterovirus and enterovirus-antibody complexes in diabetes patients carrying a TT risk genotype compared to heterozygotes that may influence control of enterovirus clearance.

  5. Sex determination: ways to evolve a hermaphrodite.

    OpenAIRE

    Braendle , Christian; Félix , Marie-Anne

    2006-01-01

    Most species of the nematode genus Caenorhabditis reproduce through males and females; C. elegans and C. briggsae, however, produce self-fertile hermaphrodites instead of females. These transitions to hermaphroditism evolved convergently through distinct modifications of germline sex determination mechanisms.

  6. WSC-07: Evolving the Web Services Challenge

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Blake, M. Brian; Cheung, William K.W.; Jaeger, Michael C.; Wombacher, Andreas

    Service-oriented architecture (SOA) is an evolving architectural paradigm where businesses can expose their capabilities as modular, network-accessible software services. By decomposing capabilities into modular services, organizations can share their offerings at multiple levels of granularity

  7. Marshal: Maintaining Evolving Models, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — SIFT proposes to design and develop the Marshal system, a mixed-initiative tool for maintaining task models over the course of evolving missions. Marshal-enabled...

  8. Satcom access in the Evolved Packet Core

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cano Soveri, M.D.; Norp, A.H.J.; Popova, M.P.

    2011-01-01

    Satellite communications (Satcom) networks are increasingly integrating with terrestrial communications networks, namely Next Generation Networks (NGN). In the area of NGN the Evolved Packet Core (EPC) is a new network architecture that can support multiple access technologies. When Satcom is

  9. Satcom access in the evolved packet core

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cano, M.D.; Norp, A.H.J.; Popova, M.P.

    2012-01-01

    Satellite communications (Satcom) networks are increasingly integrating with terrestrial communications networks, namely Next Generation Networks (NGN). In the area of NGN the Evolved Packet Core (EPC) is a new network architecture that can support multiple access technologies. When Satcom is

  10. Evolving effective incremental SAT solvers with GP

    OpenAIRE

    Bader, Mohamed; Poli, R.

    2008-01-01

    Hyper-Heuristics could simply be defined as heuristics to choose other heuristics, and it is a way of combining existing heuristics to generate new ones. In a Hyper-Heuristic framework, the framework is used for evolving effective incremental (Inc*) solvers for SAT. We test the evolved heuristics (IncHH) against other known local search heuristics on a variety of benchmark SAT problems.

  11. The Uniqueness of Milton Friedman

    OpenAIRE

    J. Daniel Hammond

    2013-01-01

    That there is no Milton Friedman today is not a mystery; the mystery is how Milton Friedman could have been. The facts of Friedman’s biography make him unique among twentieth-century public figures. He had extensive knowledge and expertise in mathematics and statistics. Yet he became a critic of ‘formal’ theory, exemplified by mathematical economics, that failed to engage with real-world facts and data, and of econometric modeling that presumed more knowledge of economic structure than Friedm...

  12. A unique gesture of sharing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mustafa, T.

    1985-01-01

    The Atoms for Peace program was a unique gesture of sharing on the part of the leading industrialized nation, and has very few parallels in modern history. The author says one of the major advantages of the program for developing nations was the much needed stimulation of their indigenous science and technology efforts and the awakening of their governments to the multifaceted benefits of atomic energy. The author discusses how the program benefited Pakistan in the production of electrical energy and in the application of nuclear techniques in the fields of agriculture and medicine, which help to alleviate hunger and combat disease

  13. Occurrence and characterisation of the hydrogen-evolving enzyme in Frankia sp.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mohapatra, A.; Leul, M.; Sellstedt, A. [Umeaa Plant Science Centre, Department of Plant Physiology, Umeaa University, S-901 87 Umeaa (Sweden); Sandstroem, G. [Karolinska Institutet, Department of Laboratory Medicine, Division of Clinical Bacteriology, Karelinska University Hospital, Huddinge, S-141 86 Stockholm (Sweden)

    2006-09-15

    An increase in hydrogen evolution from the hydrogen-evolving enzyme in the actinomycete Frankia was recorded in the presence of nickel. Immunogold localisation analysis of the intracellular distribution of hydrogenase proteins indicated that they were evenly distributed in the membranes and cytosol of both hyphae and vesicles. In addition, molecular characterisation of the hydrogen-evolving enzyme at the proteomic level, using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis combined with mass spectrometry, confirmed that the Frankia hydrogen-evolving enzyme is similar to the cyanobacterial bidirectional hydrogenase of Anabena siamensis. (author)

  14. Unique Features of Mobile Commerce

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    DING Xiaojun; IIJIMA Junichi; HO Sho

    2004-01-01

    While the market potentials and impacts of web-based e-commerce are still in the ascendant, the advances in wireless technologies and mobile networks have brought about a new business opportunity and research attention, what is termed mobile commerce. Commonly, mobile commerce is considered to be another new application of existing web-based e-commerce onto wireless networks, but as an independent business area, mobile commerce has its own advantages and challenges as opposed to traditional e-commerce applications. This paper focuses on exploring the unique features of mobile commerce as. Compared with traditional e-commerce. Also, there are still some limitations arisen in m-commerce in contrast to web-based e-commerce. Finally, current state of mobile commerce in Japan is presented in brief, with an introduction of several cases involving mobile commerce applications in today 's marketplace.

  15. Unique features of space reactors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buden, D.

    1990-01-01

    This paper reports on space reactors that are designed to meet a unique set of requirements; they must be sufficiently compact to be launched in a rocket to their operational location, operate for many years without maintenance and servicing, operate in extreme environments, and reject heat by radiation to space. To meet these restrictions, operating temperatures are much greater than in terrestrial power plants, and the reactors tend to have a fast neutron spectrum. Currently, a new generation of space reactor power plants is being developed. The major effort is in the SP-100 program, where the power plant is being designed for seven years of full power, and no maintenance operation at a reactor outlet operating temperature of 1350 K

  16. The Uniqueness of Islamic Culture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sinan YILMAZ

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract This paper examines the main reasons behind why Islamic culture is different than other cultures. In the introduction part of the paper, the usage area of the words culture and civilization were tackled. In the first part of the paper, an evaluation of the uniqueness of Islamic culture was made and examples about this were given. In the second part of the paper, evaluations about how Islamic culture has struggled with modernization and secularization and how it has shaped itself as a result of this were made. In the third part of the paper, the situation in which Islamic civilization has regressed against the Western civilization causing emerging arguments and the current situation in Islamic civilization have been addressed by making evaluations on culture and civilization. In the final part, evaluations on thesis this paper has used were made.

  17. Evolution of a Unique Systems Engineering Capability

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robert M. Caliva; James A. Murphy; Kyle B. Oswald

    2011-06-01

    The Idaho National Laboratory (INL) is a science-based, applied engineering laboratory dedicated to supporting U.S. Department of Energy missions in nuclear and energy research, science, and national security. The INL’s Systems Engineering organization supports all of the various programs under this wide array of missions. As with any multifaceted organization, strategic planning is essential to establishing a consistent culture and a value discipline throughout all levels of the enterprise. While an organization can pursue operational excellence, product leadership or customer intimacy, it is extremely difficult to excel or achieve best-in-class at all three. In fact, trying to do so has resulted in the demise of a number of organizations given the very intricate balancing act that is necessary. The INL’s Systems Engineering Department has chosen to focus on customer intimacy where the customer’s needs are first and foremost and a more total solution is the goal. Frequently a total solution requires the employment of specialized tools to manage system complexity. However, it is only after understanding customer needs that tool selection and use would be pursued. This results in using both commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) tools and, in some cases, requires internal development of specialized tools. This paper describes how a unique systems engineering capability, through the development of customized tools, evolved as a result of this customer-focused culture. It also addresses the need for a common information model or analysis framework and presents an overview of the tools developed to manage and display relationships between entities, support trade studies through the application of utility theory, and facilitate the development of a technology roadmap to manage system risk and uncertainty.

  18. Evolving Intelligent Systems Methodology and Applications

    CERN Document Server

    Angelov, Plamen; Kasabov, Nik

    2010-01-01

    From theory to techniques, the first all-in-one resource for EIS. There is a clear demand in advanced process industries, defense, and Internet and communication (VoIP) applications for intelligent yet adaptive/evolving systems. Evolving Intelligent Systems is the first self- contained volume that covers this newly established concept in its entirety, from a systematic methodology to case studies to industrial applications. Featuring chapters written by leading world experts, it addresses the progress, trends, and major achievements in this emerging research field, with a strong emphasis on th

  19. Network Analysis of Earth's Co-Evolving Geosphere and Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hazen, R. M.; Eleish, A.; Liu, C.; Morrison, S. M.; Meyer, M.; Consortium, K. D.

    2017-12-01

    A fundamental goal of Earth science is the deep understanding of Earth's dynamic, co-evolving geosphere and biosphere through deep time. Network analysis of geo- and bio- `big data' provides an interactive, quantitative, and predictive visualization framework to explore complex and otherwise hidden high-dimension features of diversity, distribution, and change in the evolution of Earth's geochemistry, mineralogy, paleobiology, and biochemistry [1]. Networks also facilitate quantitative comparison of different geological time periods, tectonic settings, and geographical regions, as well as different planets and moons, through network metrics, including density, centralization, diameter, and transitivity.We render networks by employing data related to geographical, paragenetic, environmental, or structural relationships among minerals, fossils, proteins, and microbial taxa. An important recent finding is that the topography of many networks reflects parameters not explicitly incorporated in constructing the network. For example, networks for minerals, fossils, and protein structures reveal embedded qualitative time axes, with additional network geometries possibly related to extinction and/or other punctuation events (see Figure). Other axes related to chemical activities and volatile fugacities, as well as pressure and/or depth of formation, may also emerge from network analysis. These patterns provide new insights into the way planets evolve, especially Earth's co-evolving geosphere and biosphere. 1. Morrison, S.M. et al. (2017) Network analysis of mineralogical systems. American Mineralogist 102, in press. Figure Caption: A network of Phanerozoic Era fossil animals from the past 540 million years includes blue, red, and black circles (nodes) representing family-level taxa and grey lines (links) between coexisting families. Age information was not used in the construction of this network; nevertheless an intrinsic timeline is embedded in the network topology. In

  20. On the Benefits of Divergent Search for Evolved Representations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lehman, Joel; Risi, Sebastian; Stanley, Kenneth O

    2012-01-01

    Evolved representations in evolutionary computation are often fragile, which can impede representation-dependent mechanisms such as self-adaptation. In contrast, evolved representations in nature are robust, evolvable, and creatively exploit available representational features. This paper provide...

  1. Preface: evolving rotifers, evolving science: Proceedings of the XIV International Rotifer Symposium

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Devetter, Miloslav; Fontaneto, D.; Jersabek, Ch.D.; Welch, D.B.M.; May, L.; Walsh, E.J.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 796, č. 1 (2017), s. 1-6 ISSN 0018-8158 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : evolving rotifers * 14th International Rotifer Symposium * evolving science Subject RIV: EG - Zoology OBOR OECD: Zoology Impact factor: 2.056, year: 2016

  2. Views on Evolvability of Embedded Systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Laar, P. van de; Punter, T.

    2011-01-01

    Evolvability, the ability to respond effectively to change, represents a major challenge to today's high-end embedded systems, such as those developed in the medical domain by Philips Healthcare. These systems are typically developed by multi-disciplinary teams, located around the world, and are in

  3. Views on evolvability of embedded systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Laar, van de P.J.L.J.; Punter, H.T.

    2011-01-01

    Evolvability, the ability to respond effectively to change, represents a major challenge to today's high-end embedded systems, such as those developed in the medical domain by Philips Healthcare. These systems are typically developed by multi-disciplinary teams, located around the world, and are in

  4. Designing Garments to Evolve Over Time

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Riisberg, Vibeke; Grose, Lynda

    2017-01-01

    This paper proposes a REDO of the current fashion paradigm by investigating how garments might be designed to evolve over time. The purpose is to discuss ways of expanding the traditional role of the designer to include temporal dimensions of creating, producing and using clothes and to suggest...... to a REDO of design education, to further research and the future fashion and textile industry....

  5. Continual Learning through Evolvable Neural Turing Machines

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lüders, Benno; Schläger, Mikkel; Risi, Sebastian

    2016-01-01

    Continual learning, i.e. the ability to sequentially learn tasks without catastrophic forgetting of previously learned ones, is an important open challenge in machine learning. In this paper we take a step in this direction by showing that the recently proposed Evolving Neural Turing Machine (ENTM...

  6. Did Language Evolve Like the Vertebrate Eye?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Botha, Rudolf P.

    2002-01-01

    Offers a critical appraisal of the way in which the idea that human language or some of its features evolved like the vertebrate eye by natural selection is articulated in Pinker and Bloom's (1990) selectionist account of language evolution. Argues that this account is less than insightful because it fails to draw some of the conceptual…

  7. Human uniqueness-self-interest and social cooperation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okada, Daijiro; Bingham, Paul M

    2008-07-21

    Humans are unique among all species of terrestrial history in both ecological dominance and individual properties. Many, or perhaps all, of the unique elements of this nonpareil status can be plausibly interpreted as evolutionary and strategic elements and consequences of the unprecedented intensity and scale of our social cooperation. Convincing explanation of this unique human social adaptation remains a central, unmet challenge to the scientific enterprise. We develop a hypothesis for the ancestral origin of expanded cooperative social behavior. Specifically, we present a game theoretic analysis demonstrating that a specific pattern of expanded social cooperation between conspecific individuals with conflicts of interest (including non-kin) can be strategically viable, but only in animals that possess a highly unusual capacity for conspecific violence (credible threat) having very specific properties that dramatically reduce the costs of coercive violence. The resulting reduced costs allow preemptive or compensated coercion to be an instantaneously self-interested behavior under diverse circumstances rather than in rare, idiosyncratic circumstances as in actors (animals) who do not have access to inexpensive coercive threat. Humans are apparently unique among terrestrial organisms in having evolved conspecific coercive capabilities that fulfill these stringent requirements. Thus, our results support the proposal that access to a novel capacity for projection of coercive threat might represent the essential initiating event for the evolution of a human-like pattern of social cooperation and the subsequent evolution of the diverse features of human uniqueness. Empirical evidence indicates that these constraints were, in fact, met only in our evolutionary lineage. The logic for the emergence of uniquely human cooperation suggested by our analysis apparently accounts simply for the human fossil record.

  8. Cellular strategies to cope with protein aggregation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scior, Annika; Juenemann, Katrin; Kirstein, Janine

    2016-01-01

    Nature has evolved several mechanisms to detoxify intracellular protein aggregates that arise upon proteotoxic challenges. These include the controlled deposition of misfolded proteins at distinct cellular sites, the protein disaggregation and refolding by molecular chaperones and/or degradation of

  9. Heart Failure: Unique to Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... to Z › Heart Failure › Unique to Older Adults Font size A A A Print Share Glossary Unique ... will suffer from depression at some point. This type of severe depression is more serious than the ...

  10. The evolving definition of systemic arterial hypertension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ram, C Venkata S; Giles, Thomas D

    2010-05-01

    Systemic hypertension is an important risk factor for premature cardiovascular disease. Hypertension also contributes to excessive morbidity and mortality. Whereas excellent therapeutic options are available to treat hypertension, there is an unsettled issue about the very definition of hypertension. At what level of blood pressure should we treat hypertension? Does the definition of hypertension change in the presence of co-morbid conditions? This article covers in detail the evolving concepts in the diagnosis and management of hypertension.

  11. The evolving epidemiology of inflammatory bowel disease.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Shanahan, Fergus

    2009-07-01

    Epidemiologic studies in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) include assessments of disease burden and evolving patterns of disease presentation. Although it is hoped that sound epidemiologic studies provide aetiological clues, traditional risk factor-based epidemiology has provided limited insights into either Crohn\\'s disease or ulcerative colitis etiopathogenesis. In this update, we will summarize how the changing epidemiology of IBD associated with modernization can be reconciled with current concepts of disease mechanisms and will discuss studies of clinically significant comorbidity in IBD.

  12. Development and the evolvability of human limbs

    OpenAIRE

    Young, Nathan M.; Wagner, Günter P.; Hallgrímsson, Benedikt

    2010-01-01

    The long legs and short arms of humans are distinctive for a primate, the result of selection acting in opposite directions on each limb at different points in our evolutionary history. This mosaic pattern challenges our understanding of the relationship of development and evolvability because limbs are serially homologous and genetic correlations should act as a significant constraint on their independent evolution. Here we test a developmental model of limb covariation in anthropoid primate...

  13. Quantum games on evolving random networks

    OpenAIRE

    Pawela, Łukasz

    2015-01-01

    We study the advantages of quantum strategies in evolutionary social dilemmas on evolving random networks. We focus our study on the two-player games: prisoner's dilemma, snowdrift and stag-hunt games. The obtained result show the benefits of quantum strategies for the prisoner's dilemma game. For the other two games, we obtain regions of parameters where the quantum strategies dominate, as well as regions where the classical strategies coexist.

  14. The Evolving Leadership Path of Visual Analytics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kluse, Michael; Peurrung, Anthony J.; Gracio, Deborah K.

    2012-01-02

    This is a requested book chapter for an internationally authored book on visual analytics and related fields, coordianted by a UK university and to be published by Springer in 2012. This chapter is an overview of the leadship strategies that PNNL's Jim Thomas and other stakeholders used to establish visual analytics as a field, and how those strategies may evolve in the future.

  15. Computational topology and the Unique Games Conjecture

    OpenAIRE

    Grochow, Joshua A.; Tucker-Foltz, Jamie

    2018-01-01

    Covering spaces of graphs have long been useful for studying expanders (as "graph lifts") and unique games (as the "label-extended graph"). In this paper we advocate for the thesis that there is a much deeper relationship between computational topology and the Unique Games Conjecture. Our starting point is Linial's 2005 observation that the only known problems whose inapproximability is equivalent to the Unique Games Conjecture - Unique Games and Max-2Lin - are instances of Maximum Section of...

  16. CMIP6 Data Citation of Evolving Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martina Stockhause

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Data citations have become widely accepted. Technical infrastructures as well as principles and recommendations for data citation are in place but best practices or guidelines for their implementation are not yet available. On the other hand, the scientific climate community requests early citations on evolving data for credit, e.g. for CMIP6 (Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 6. The data citation concept for CMIP6 is presented. The main challenges lie in limited resources, a strict project timeline and the dependency on changes of the data dissemination infrastructure ESGF (Earth System Grid Federation to meet the data citation requirements. Therefore a pragmatic, flexible and extendible approach for the CMIP6 data citation service was developed, consisting of a citation for the full evolving data superset and a data cart approach for citing the concrete used data subset. This two citation approach can be implemented according to the RDA recommendations for evolving data. Because of resource constraints and missing project policies, the implementation of the second part of the citation concept is postponed to CMIP7.

  17. Unique type of isolated cardiac valvular amyloidosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reehana Salma

    2006-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Amyloid deposition in heart is a common occurrence in systemic amyloidosis. But localised valvular amyloid deposits are very uncommon. It was only in 1922 that the cases of valvular amyloidosis were reported. Then in 1980, Goffin et al reported another type of valvular amyloidosis, which he called the dystrophic valvular amyloidosis. We report a case of aortic valve amyloidosis which is different from the yet described valvular amyloidosis. Case presentation A 72 years old gentleman underwent urgent aortic valve replacement. Intraoperatively, a lesion was found attached to the inferior surface of his bicuspid aortic valve. Histopathology examination of the valve revealed that the lesion contained amyloid deposits, identified as AL amyloidosis. The serum amyloid A protein (SAP scan was normal and showed no evidence of systemic amyloidosis. The ECG and echocardiogram were not consistent with cardiac amyloidosis. Conclusion Two major types of cardiac amyloidosis have been described in literature: primary-myelomatous type (occurs with systemic amyolidosis, and senile type(s. Recently, a localised cardiac dystrophic valvular amyloidosis has been described. In all previously reported cases, there was a strong association of localised valvular amyloidosis with calcific deposits. Ours is a unique case which differs from the previously reported cases of localised valvular amyloidosis. In this case, the lesion was not associated with any scar tissue. Also there was no calcific deposit found. This may well be a yet unknown type of isolated valvular amyloidosis.

  18. Designing protein-based biomaterials for medical applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gagner, Jennifer E; Kim, Wookhyun; Chaikof, Elliot L

    2014-04-01

    Biomaterials produced by nature have been honed through billions of years, evolving exquisitely precise structure-function relationships that scientists strive to emulate. Advances in genetic engineering have facilitated extensive investigations to determine how changes in even a single peptide within a protein sequence can produce biomaterials with unique thermal, mechanical and biological properties. Elastin, a naturally occurring protein polymer, serves as a model protein to determine the relationship between specific structural elements and desirable material characteristics. The modular, repetitive nature of the protein facilitates the formation of well-defined secondary structures with the ability to self-assemble into complex three-dimensional architectures on a variety of length scales. Furthermore, many opportunities exist to incorporate other protein-based motifs and inorganic materials into recombinant protein-based materials, extending the range and usefulness of these materials in potential biomedical applications. Elastin-like polypeptides (ELPs) can be assembled into 3-D architectures with precise control over payload encapsulation, mechanical and thermal properties, as well as unique functionalization opportunities through both genetic and enzymatic means. An overview of current protein-based materials, their properties and uses in biomedicine will be provided, with a focus on the advantages of ELPs. Applications of these biomaterials as imaging and therapeutic delivery agents will be discussed. Finally, broader implications and future directions of these materials as diagnostic and therapeutic systems will be explored. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Meiosis evolves: adaptation to external and internal environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bomblies, Kirsten; Higgins, James D; Yant, Levi

    2015-10-01

    306 I. 306 II. 307 III. 312 IV. 317 V. 318 319 References 319 SUMMARY: Meiosis is essential for the fertility of most eukaryotes and its structures and progression are conserved across kingdoms. Yet many of its core proteins show evidence of rapid or adaptive evolution. What drives the evolution of meiosis proteins? How can constrained meiotic processes be modified in response to challenges without compromising their essential functions? In surveying the literature, we found evidence of two especially potent challenges to meiotic chromosome segregation that probably necessitate adaptive evolutionary responses: whole-genome duplication and abiotic environment, especially temperature. Evolutionary solutions to both kinds of challenge are likely to involve modification of homologous recombination and synapsis, probably via adjustments of core structural components important in meiosis I. Synthesizing these findings with broader patterns of meiosis gene evolution suggests that the structural components of meiosis coevolve as adaptive modules that may change in primary sequence and function while maintaining three-dimensional structures and protein interactions. The often sharp divergence of these genes among species probably reflects periodic modification of entire multiprotein complexes driven by genomic or environmental changes. We suggest that the pressures that cause meiosis to evolve to maintain fertility may cause pleiotropic alterations of global crossover rates. We highlight several important areas for future research. © 2015 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2015 New Phytologist Trust.

  20. Adaptive synonymous mutations in an experimentally evolved Pseudomonas fluorescens population

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bailey, Susan; Hinz, Aaron; Kassen, Rees

    2014-01-01

    Conventional wisdom holds that synonymous mutations, nucleotide changes that do not alter the encoded amino acid, have no detectable effect on phenotype or fitness. However, a growing body of evidence from both comparative and experimental studies suggests otherwise. Synonymous mutations have been...... shown to impact gene expression, protein folding and fitness, however, direct evidence that they can be positively selected, and so contribute to adaptation, is lacking. Here we report the recovery of two beneficial synonymous single base pair changes that arose spontaneously and independently...... in an experimentally evolved population of Pseudomonas fluorescens. We show experimentally that these mutations increase fitness by an amount comparable to non-synonymous mutations and that the fitness increases stem from increased gene expression. These results provide unequivocal evidence that synonymous mutations...

  1. Insect sex determination: it all evolves around transformer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verhulst, Eveline C; van de Zande, Louis; Beukeboom, Leo W

    2010-08-01

    Insects exhibit a variety of sex determining mechanisms including male or female heterogamety and haplodiploidy. The primary signal that starts sex determination is processed by a cascade of genes ending with the conserved switch doublesex that controls sexual differentiation. Transformer is the doublesex splicing regulator and has been found in all examined insects, indicating its ancestral function as a sex-determining gene. Despite this conserved function, the variation in transformer nucleotide sequence, amino acid composition and protein structure can accommodate a multitude of upstream sex determining signals. Transformer regulation of doublesex and its taxonomic distribution indicate that the doublesex-transformer axis is conserved among all insects and that transformer is the key gene around which variation in sex determining mechanisms has evolved.

  2. A Nucleotide Phosphatase Activity in the Nucleotide Binding Domain of an Orphan Resistance Protein from Rice*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenyk, Stepan; de San Eustaquio Campillo, Alba; Pohl, Ehmke; Hussey, Patrick J.; Cann, Martin J.

    2012-01-01

    Plant resistance proteins (R-proteins) are key components of the plant immune system activated in response to a plethora of different pathogens. R-proteins are P-loop NTPase superfamily members, and current models describe their main function as ATPases in defense signaling pathways. Here we show that a subset of R-proteins have evolved a new function to combat pathogen infection. This subset of R-proteins possesses a nucleotide phosphatase activity in the nucleotide-binding domain. Related R-proteins that fall in the same phylogenetic clade all show the same nucleotide phosphatase activity indicating a conserved function within at least a subset of R-proteins. R-protein nucleotide phosphatases catalyze the production of nucleoside from nucleotide with the nucleotide monophosphate as the preferred substrate. Mutation of conserved catalytic residues substantially reduced activity consistent with the biochemistry of P-loop NTPases. Kinetic analysis, analytical gel filtration, and chemical cross-linking demonstrated that the nucleotide-binding domain was active as a multimer. Nuclear magnetic resonance and nucleotide analogues identified the terminal phosphate bond as the target of a reaction that utilized a metal-mediated nucleophilic attack by water on the phosphoester. In conclusion, we have identified a group of R-proteins with a unique function. This biochemical activity appears to have co-evolved with plants in signaling pathways designed to resist pathogen attack. PMID:22157756

  3. A nucleotide phosphatase activity in the nucleotide binding domain of an orphan resistance protein from rice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenyk, Stepan; Campillo, Alba de San Eustaquio; Pohl, Ehmke; Hussey, Patrick J; Cann, Martin J

    2012-02-03

    Plant resistance proteins (R-proteins) are key components of the plant immune system activated in response to a plethora of different pathogens. R-proteins are P-loop NTPase superfamily members, and current models describe their main function as ATPases in defense signaling pathways. Here we show that a subset of R-proteins have evolved a new function to combat pathogen infection. This subset of R-proteins possesses a nucleotide phosphatase activity in the nucleotide-binding domain. Related R-proteins that fall in the same phylogenetic clade all show the same nucleotide phosphatase activity indicating a conserved function within at least a subset of R-proteins. R-protein nucleotide phosphatases catalyze the production of nucleoside from nucleotide with the nucleotide monophosphate as the preferred substrate. Mutation of conserved catalytic residues substantially reduced activity consistent with the biochemistry of P-loop NTPases. Kinetic analysis, analytical gel filtration, and chemical cross-linking demonstrated that the nucleotide-binding domain was active as a multimer. Nuclear magnetic resonance and nucleotide analogues identified the terminal phosphate bond as the target of a reaction that utilized a metal-mediated nucleophilic attack by water on the phosphoester. In conclusion, we have identified a group of R-proteins with a unique function. This biochemical activity appears to have co-evolved with plants in signaling pathways designed to resist pathogen attack.

  4. Evolvability Is an Evolved Ability: The Coding Concept as the Arch-Unit of Natural Selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janković, Srdja; Ćirković, Milan M

    2016-03-01

    Physical processes that characterize living matter are qualitatively distinct in that they involve encoding and transfer of specific types of information. Such information plays an active part in the control of events that are ultimately linked to the capacity of the system to persist and multiply. This algorithmicity of life is a key prerequisite for its Darwinian evolution, driven by natural selection acting upon stochastically arising variations of the encoded information. The concept of evolvability attempts to define the total capacity of a system to evolve new encoded traits under appropriate conditions, i.e., the accessible section of total morphological space. Since this is dependent on previously evolved regulatory networks that govern information flow in the system, evolvability itself may be regarded as an evolved ability. The way information is physically written, read and modified in living cells (the "coding concept") has not changed substantially during the whole history of the Earth's biosphere. This biosphere, be it alone or one of many, is, accordingly, itself a product of natural selection, since the overall evolvability conferred by its coding concept (nucleic acids as information carriers with the "rulebook of meanings" provided by codons, as well as all the subsystems that regulate various conditional information-reading modes) certainly played a key role in enabling this biosphere to survive up to the present, through alterations of planetary conditions, including at least five catastrophic events linked to major mass extinctions. We submit that, whatever the actual prebiotic physical and chemical processes may have been on our home planet, or may, in principle, occur at some time and place in the Universe, a particular coding concept, with its respective potential to give rise to a biosphere, or class of biospheres, of a certain evolvability, may itself be regarded as a unit (indeed the arch-unit) of natural selection.

  5. Q&A: What is human language, when did it evolve and why should we care?

    OpenAIRE

    Pagel, Mark

    2017-01-01

    Human language is unique among all forms of animal communication. It is unlikely that any other species, including our close genetic cousins the Neanderthals, ever had language, and so-called sign 'language' in Great Apes is nothing like human language. Language evolution shares many features with biological evolution, and this has made it useful for tracing recent human history and for studying how culture evolves among groups of people with related languages. A case can be made that languag...

  6. Social networks and online environments: when science and practice co-evolve

    OpenAIRE

    Rosen, Devan; Barnett, George A.; Kim, Jang Hyun

    2011-01-01

    The science of social network analysis has co-evolved with the development of online environments and computer-mediated communication. Unique and precise data available from computer and information systems have allowed network scientists to explore novel social phenomena and develop new methods. Additionally, advances in the structural analysis and visualization of computer-mediated social networks have informed developers and shaped the design of social media tools. This article reviews som...

  7. SECRET domain of variola virus CrmB protein can be a member of poxviral type II chemokine-binding proteins family

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shchelkunov Sergei N

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Variola virus (VARV the causative agent of smallpox, eradicated in 1980, have wide spectrum of immunomodulatory proteins to evade host immunity. Recently additional biological activity was discovered for VARV CrmB protein, known to bind and inhibit tumour necrosis factor (TNF through its N-terminal domain homologous to cellular TNF receptors. Besides binding TNF, this protein was also shown to bind with high affinity several chemokines which recruit B- and T-lymphocytes and dendritic cells to sites of viral entry and replication. Ability to bind chemokines was shown to be associated with unique C-terminal domain of CrmB protein. This domain named SECRET (Smallpox virus-Encoded Chemokine Receptor is unrelated to the host proteins and lacks significant homology with other known viral chemokine-binding proteins or any other known protein. Findings De novo modelling of VARV-CrmB SECRET domain spatial structure revealed its apparent structural homology with cowpox virus CC-chemokine binding protein (vCCI and vaccinia virus A41 protein, despite low sequence identity between these three proteins. Potential ligand-binding surface of modelled VARV-CrmB SECRET domain was also predicted to bear prominent electronegative charge which is characteristic to known orthopoxviral chemokine-binding proteins. Conclusions Our results suggest that SECRET should be included into the family of poxviral type II chemokine-binding proteins and that it might have been evolved from the vCCI-like predecessor protein.

  8. SECRET domain of variola virus CrmB protein can be a member of poxviral type II chemokine-binding proteins family.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antonets, Denis V; Nepomnyashchikh, Tatyana S; Shchelkunov, Sergei N

    2010-10-27

    Variola virus (VARV) the causative agent of smallpox, eradicated in 1980, have wide spectrum of immunomodulatory proteins to evade host immunity. Recently additional biological activity was discovered for VARV CrmB protein, known to bind and inhibit tumour necrosis factor (TNF) through its N-terminal domain homologous to cellular TNF receptors. Besides binding TNF, this protein was also shown to bind with high affinity several chemokines which recruit B- and T-lymphocytes and dendritic cells to sites of viral entry and replication. Ability to bind chemokines was shown to be associated with unique C-terminal domain of CrmB protein. This domain named SECRET (Smallpox virus-Encoded Chemokine Receptor) is unrelated to the host proteins and lacks significant homology with other known viral chemokine-binding proteins or any other known protein. De novo modelling of VARV-CrmB SECRET domain spatial structure revealed its apparent structural homology with cowpox virus CC-chemokine binding protein (vCCI) and vaccinia virus A41 protein, despite low sequence identity between these three proteins. Potential ligand-binding surface of modelled VARV-CrmB SECRET domain was also predicted to bear prominent electronegative charge which is characteristic to known orthopoxviral chemokine-binding proteins. Our results suggest that SECRET should be included into the family of poxviral type II chemokine-binding proteins and that it might have been evolved from the vCCI-like predecessor protein.

  9. Revealing evolved massive stars with Spitzer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gvaramadze, V. V.; Kniazev, A. Y.; Fabrika, S.

    2010-06-01

    Massive evolved stars lose a large fraction of their mass via copious stellar wind or instant outbursts. During certain evolutionary phases, they can be identified by the presence of their circumstellar nebulae. In this paper, we present the results of a search for compact nebulae (reminiscent of circumstellar nebulae around evolved massive stars) using archival 24-μm data obtained with the Multiband Imaging Photometer for Spitzer. We have discovered 115 nebulae, most of which bear a striking resemblance to the circumstellar nebulae associated with luminous blue variables (LBVs) and late WN-type (WNL) Wolf-Rayet (WR) stars in the Milky Way and the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC). We interpret this similarity as an indication that the central stars of detected nebulae are either LBVs or related evolved massive stars. Our interpretation is supported by follow-up spectroscopy of two dozen of these central stars, most of which turn out to be either candidate LBVs (cLBVs), blue supergiants or WNL stars. We expect that the forthcoming spectroscopy of the remaining objects from our list, accompanied by the spectrophotometric monitoring of the already discovered cLBVs, will further increase the known population of Galactic LBVs. This, in turn, will have profound consequences for better understanding the LBV phenomenon and its role in the transition between hydrogen-burning O stars and helium-burning WR stars. We also report on the detection of an arc-like structure attached to the cLBV HD 326823 and an arc associated with the LBV R99 (HD 269445) in the LMC. Partially based on observations collected at the German-Spanish Astronomical Centre, Calar Alto, jointly operated by the Max-Planck-Institut für Astronomie Heidelberg and the Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía (CSIC). E-mail: vgvaram@mx.iki.rssi.ru (VVG); akniazev@saao.ac.za (AYK); fabrika@sao.ru (SF)

  10. Evolving Random Forest for Preference Learning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abou-Zleikha, Mohamed; Shaker, Noor

    2015-01-01

    This paper introduces a novel approach for pairwise preference learning through a combination of an evolutionary method and random forest. Grammatical evolution is used to describe the structure of the trees in the Random Forest (RF) and to handle the process of evolution. Evolved random forests ...... obtained for predicting pairwise self-reports of users for the three emotional states engagement, frustration and challenge show very promising results that are comparable and in some cases superior to those obtained from state-of-the-art methods....

  11. An evolving network model with community structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li Chunguang; Maini, Philip K

    2005-01-01

    Many social and biological networks consist of communities-groups of nodes within which connections are dense, but between which connections are sparser. Recently, there has been considerable interest in designing algorithms for detecting community structures in real-world complex networks. In this paper, we propose an evolving network model which exhibits community structure. The network model is based on the inner-community preferential attachment and inter-community preferential attachment mechanisms. The degree distributions of this network model are analysed based on a mean-field method. Theoretical results and numerical simulations indicate that this network model has community structure and scale-free properties

  12. Radio Imaging of Envelopes of Evolved Stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotton, Bill

    2018-04-01

    This talk will cover imaging of stellar envelopes using radio VLBI techniques; special attention will be paid to the technical differences between radio and optical/IR interferomery. Radio heterodyne receivers allow a straightforward way to derive spectral cubes and full polarization observations. Milliarcsecond resolution of very bright, i.e. non thermal, emission of molecular masers in the envelopes of evolved stars can be achieved using VLBI techniques with baselines of thousands of km. Emission from SiO, H2O and OH masers are commonly seen at increasing distance from the photosphere. The very narrow maser lines allow accurate measurements of the velocity field within the emitting region.

  13. Mobile computing acceptance grows as applications evolve.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Porn, Louis M; Patrick, Kelly

    2002-01-01

    Handheld devices are becoming more cost-effective to own, and their use in healthcare environments is increasing. Handheld devices currently are being used for e-prescribing, charge capture, and accessing daily schedules and reference tools. Future applications may include education on medications, dictation, order entry, and test-results reporting. Selecting the right handheld device requires careful analysis of current and future applications, as well as vendor expertise. It is important to recognize the technology will continue to evolve over the next three years.

  14. SALT Spectroscopy of Evolved Massive Stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kniazev, A. Y.; Gvaramadze, V. V.; Berdnikov, L. N.

    2017-06-01

    Long-slit spectroscopy with the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) of central stars of mid-infrared nebulae detected with the Spitzer Space Telescope and Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) led to the discovery of numerous candidate luminous blue variables (cLBVs) and other rare evolved massive stars. With the recent advent of the SALT fiber-fed high-resolution echelle spectrograph (HRS), a new perspective for the study of these interesting objects is appeared. Using the HRS we obtained spectra of a dozen newly identified massive stars. Some results on the recently identified cLBV Hen 3-729 are presented.

  15. BOOK REVIEW: OPENING SCIENCE, THE EVOLVING GUIDE ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    The way we get our funding, collaborate, do our research, and get the word out has evolved over hundreds of years but we can imagine a more open science world, largely facilitated by the internet. The movement towards this more open way of doing and presenting science is coming, and it is not taking hundreds of years. If you are interested in these trends, and would like to find out more about where this is all headed and what it means to you, consider downloding Opening Science, edited by Sönke Bartling and Sascha Friesike, subtitled The Evolving Guide on How the Internet is Changing Research, Collaboration, and Scholarly Publishing. In 26 chapters by various authors from a range of disciplines the book explores the developing world of open science, starting from the first scientific revolution and bringing us to the next scientific revolution, sometimes referred to as “Science 2.0”. Some of the articles deal with the impact of the changing landscape of how science is done, looking at the impact of open science on Academia, or journal publishing, or medical research. Many of the articles look at the uses, pitfalls, and impact of specific tools, like microblogging (think Twitter), social networking, and reference management. There is lots of discussion and definition of terms you might use or misuse like “altmetrics” and “impact factor”. Science will probably never be completely open, and Twitter will probably never replace the journal article,

  16. Evolving NASA's Earth Science Data Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walter, J.; Behnke, J.; Murphy, K. J.; Lowe, D. R.

    2013-12-01

    NASA's Earth Science Data and Information System Project (ESDIS) is charged with managing, maintaining, and evolving NASA's Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) and is responsible for processing, archiving, and distributing NASA Earth science data. The system supports a multitude of missions and serves diverse science research and other user communities. Keeping up with ever-changing information technology and figuring out how to leverage those changes across such a large system in order to continuously improve and meet the needs of a diverse user community is a significant challenge. Maintaining and evolving the system architecture and infrastructure is a continuous and multi-layered effort. It requires a balance between a "top down" management paradigm that provides a coherent system view and maintaining the managerial, technological, and functional independence of the individual system elements. This presentation will describe some of the key elements of the current system architecture, some of the strategies and processes we employ to meet these challenges, current and future challenges, and some ideas for meeting those challenges.

  17. The Comet Cometh: Evolving Developmental Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaeger, Johannes; Laubichler, Manfred; Callebaut, Werner

    In a recent opinion piece, Denis Duboule has claimed that the increasing shift towards systems biology is driving evolutionary and developmental biology apart, and that a true reunification of these two disciplines within the framework of evolutionary developmental biology (EvoDevo) may easily take another 100 years. He identifies methodological, epistemological, and social differences as causes for this supposed separation. Our article provides a contrasting view. We argue that Duboule's prediction is based on a one-sided understanding of systems biology as a science that is only interested in functional, not evolutionary, aspects of biological processes. Instead, we propose a research program for an evolutionary systems biology, which is based on local exploration of the configuration space in evolving developmental systems. We call this approach-which is based on reverse engineering, simulation, and mathematical analysis-the natural history of configuration space. We discuss a number of illustrative examples that demonstrate the past success of local exploration, as opposed to global mapping, in different biological contexts. We argue that this pragmatic mode of inquiry can be extended and applied to the mathematical analysis of the developmental repertoire and evolutionary potential of evolving developmental mechanisms and that evolutionary systems biology so conceived provides a pragmatic epistemological framework for the EvoDevo synthesis.

  18. Will the Amaranthus tuberculatus Resistance Mechanism to PPO-Inhibiting Herbicides Evolve in Other Amaranthus Species?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chance W. Riggins

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Resistance to herbicides that inhibit protoporphyrinogen oxidase (PPO has been slow to evolve and, to date, is confirmed for only four weed species. Two of these species are members of the genus Amaranthus L. Previous research has demonstrated that PPO-inhibitor resistance in A. tuberculatus (Moq. Sauer, the first weed to have evolved this type of resistance, involves a unique codon deletion in the PPX2 gene. Our hypothesis is that A. tuberculatus may have been predisposed to evolving this resistance mechanism due to the presence of a repetitive motif at the mutation site and that lack of this motif in other amaranth species is why PPO-inhibitor resistance has not become more common despite strong herbicide selection pressure. Here we investigate inter- and intraspecific variability of the PPX2 gene—specifically exon 9, which includes the mutation site—in ten amaranth species via sequencing and a PCR-RFLP assay. Few polymorphisms were observed in this region of the gene, and intraspecific variation was observed only in A. quitensis. However, sequencing revealed two distinct repeat patterns encompassing the mutation site. Most notably, A. palmeri S. Watson possesses the same repetitive motif found in A. tuberculatus. We thus predict that A. palmeri will evolve resistance to PPO inhibitors via the same PPX2 codon deletion that evolved in A. tuberculatus.

  19. Electroplating targets for production of unique PET radionuclides

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bui, V.; Sheh, Y.; Finn, R.

    1994-01-01

    The past decade has witnessed the applications of Positron Emission Tomography (PET) evolving from a purely research endeavour to a procedure which has specific clinical applications in the areas of cardiology, neurology and oncology. The growth of PET has been facilitated by developments in medical instrumentation and radiopharmaceutical chemistry efforts. Included in this latter effort has been the low energy accelerator production and processing of unique PET radionuclides appropriate for the radiolabeling of biomolecules i.e. monoclonal antibodies and pepetides. The development and application of electroplated targets of antimony and copper for the production of iodine-124 and gallium-66 respectively, utilizing the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center cyclotron are examples of target design and development applicable to many medical accelerators

  20. Unique Physician Identification Number (UPIN) Directory

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — The Unique Physician Identification Number (UPIN) Directory contains selected information on physicians, doctors of Osteopathy, limited licensed practitioners and...

  1. EEVEE: the Empathy-Enhancing Virtual Evolving Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philip L. Jackson

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Empathy is a multifaceted emotional and mental faculty that is often found to be affected in a great number of psychopathologies, including schizophrenia, yet it remains very difficult to measure in an ecological context. The challenge stems partly from the complexity and fluidity of this social process, but also from its covert nature. A powerful tool to enhance experimental control over such dynamic social interactions is the use of avatars in virtual reality (VR, and one way to collect information about an individual in an interaction is through the analysis of his or her neurophysiological and behavioural responses. We have developed a unique platform, the Empathy-Enhancing Virtual Evolving Environment (EEVEE, which is built around three main components: 1 different avatars capable of expressing feelings and emotions at various levels based on the Facial Action Coding System (FACS; 2 systems for measuring the physiological responses of the observer (heart and respiration rate, skin conductance, gaze and eye movements, facial expression; and 3 a multimodal interface linking the avatar’s behaviour to the observer’s neurophysiological response. In this article, we provide a detailed description of the components of this innovative platform and validation data from the first phases of development. Our data show that healthy adults can discriminate different negative emotions, including pain, expressed by avatars at varying intensities. We also provide evidence that masking part of an avatar’s face (top or bottom half does not prevent the detection of different levels of pain. Overall, this innovative and flexible platform provides a unique tool to study and even modulate empathy in a comprehensive and ecological manner in number of populations suffering from neurological or psychiatric disorders.

  2. Evolvability as a Quality Attribute of Software Architectures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ciraci, S.; van den Broek, P.M.; Duchien, Laurence; D'Hondt, Maja; Mens, Tom

    We review the definition of evolvability as it appears on the literature. In particular, the concept of software evolvability is compared with other system quality attributes, such as adaptability, maintainability and modifiability.

  3. Evolving colon injury management: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greer, Lauren T; Gillern, Suzanne M; Vertrees, Amy E

    2013-02-01

    The colon is the second most commonly injured intra-abdominal organ in penetrating trauma. Management of traumatic colon injuries has evolved significantly over the past 200 years. Traumatic colon injuries can have a wide spectrum of severity, presentation, and management options. There is strong evidence that most non-destructive colon injuries can be successfully managed with primary repair or primary anastomosis. The management of destructive colon injuries remains controversial with most favoring resection with primary anastomosis and others favor colonic diversion in specific circumstances. The historical management of traumatic colon injuries, common mechanisms of injury, demographics, presentation, assessment, diagnosis, management, and complications of traumatic colon injuries both in civilian and military practice are reviewed. The damage control revolution has added another layer of complexity to management with continued controversy.

  4. Pulmonary Sporotrichosis: An Evolving Clinical Paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aung, Ar K; Spelman, Denis W; Thompson, Philip J

    2015-10-01

    In recent decades, sporotrichosis, caused by thermally dimorphic fungi Sporothrix schenckii complex, has become an emerging infection in many parts of the world. Pulmonary infection with S. schenckii still remains relatively uncommon, possibly due to underrecognition. Pulmonary sporotrichosis presents with distinct clinical and radiological patterns in both immunocompetent and immunocompromised hosts and can often result in significant morbidity and mortality despite treatment. Current understanding regarding S. schenckii biology, epidemiology, immunopathology, clinical diagnostics, and treatment options has been evolving in the recent years with increased availability of molecular sequencing techniques. However, this changing knowledge has not yet been fully translated into a better understanding of the clinical aspects of pulmonary sporotrichosis, as such current management guidelines remain unsupported by high-level clinical evidence. This article examines recent advances in the knowledge of sporotrichosis and its application to the difficult challenges of managing pulmonary sporotrichosis. Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.

  5. Resiliently evolving supply-demand networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubido, Nicolás; Grebogi, Celso; Baptista, Murilo S.

    2014-01-01

    The ability to design a transport network such that commodities are brought from suppliers to consumers in a steady, optimal, and stable way is of great importance for distribution systems nowadays. In this work, by using the circuit laws of Kirchhoff and Ohm, we provide the exact capacities of the edges that an optimal supply-demand network should have to operate stably under perturbations, i.e., without overloading. The perturbations we consider are the evolution of the connecting topology, the decentralization of hub sources or sinks, and the intermittence of supplier and consumer characteristics. We analyze these conditions and the impact of our results, both on the current United Kingdom power-grid structure and on numerically generated evolving archetypal network topologies.

  6. Development and the evolvability of human limbs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Nathan M; Wagner, Günter P; Hallgrímsson, Benedikt

    2010-02-23

    The long legs and short arms of humans are distinctive for a primate, the result of selection acting in opposite directions on each limb at different points in our evolutionary history. This mosaic pattern challenges our understanding of the relationship of development and evolvability because limbs are serially homologous and genetic correlations should act as a significant constraint on their independent evolution. Here we test a developmental model of limb covariation in anthropoid primates and demonstrate that both humans and apes exhibit significantly reduced integration between limbs when compared to quadrupedal monkeys. This result indicates that fossil hominins likely escaped constraints on independent limb variation via reductions to genetic pleiotropy in an ape-like last common ancestor (LCA). This critical change in integration among hominoids, which is reflected in macroevolutionary differences in the disparity between limb lengths, facilitated selection for modern human limb proportions and demonstrates how development helps shape evolutionary change.

  7. Evolving spiking networks with variable resistive memories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, Gerard; Bull, Larry; de Lacy Costello, Ben; Gale, Ella; Adamatzky, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Neuromorphic computing is a brainlike information processing paradigm that requires adaptive learning mechanisms. A spiking neuro-evolutionary system is used for this purpose; plastic resistive memories are implemented as synapses in spiking neural networks. The evolutionary design process exploits parameter self-adaptation and allows the topology and synaptic weights to be evolved for each network in an autonomous manner. Variable resistive memories are the focus of this research; each synapse has its own conductance profile which modifies the plastic behaviour of the device and may be altered during evolution. These variable resistive networks are evaluated on a noisy robotic dynamic-reward scenario against two static resistive memories and a system containing standard connections only. The results indicate that the extra behavioural degrees of freedom available to the networks incorporating variable resistive memories enable them to outperform the comparative synapse types.

  8. Life cycle planning: An evolving concept

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moore, P.J.R.; Gorman, I.G.

    1994-01-01

    Life-cycle planning is an evolving concept in the management of oil and gas projects. BHP Petroleum now interprets this idea to include all development planning from discovery and field appraisal to final abandonment and includes safety, environmental, technical, plant, regulatory, and staffing issues. This article describes in the context of the Timor Sea, how despite initial successes and continuing facilities upgrades, BHPP came to perceive that current operations could be the victim of early development successes, particularly in the areas of corrosion and maintenance. The search for analogies elsewhere lead to the UK North Sea, including the experiences of Britoil and BP, both of which performed detailed Life of Field studies in the later eighties. These materials have been used to construct a format and content for total Life-cycle plans in general and the social changes required to ensure their successful application in Timor Sea operations and deployment throughout Australia

  9. Argentina and Brazil: an evolving nuclear relationship

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Redick, J.R.

    1990-01-01

    Argentina and Brazil have Latin America's most advanced nuclear research and power programs. Both nations reject the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), and have not formally embraced the Tlatelolco Treaty creating a regional nuclear-weapon-free zone. Disturbing ambiguities persist regarding certain indigenous nuclear facilities and growing nuclear submarine and missile capabilities. For these, and other reasons, the two nations are widely considered potential nuclear weapon states. However both nations have been active supporters of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and have, in recent years, assumed a generally responsible position in regard to their own nuclear export activities (requiring IAEA safeguards). Most important, however, has been the advent of bilateral nuclear cooperation. This paper considers the evolving nuclear relationship in the context of recent and dramatic political change in Argentina and Brazil. It discusses current political and nuclear developments and the prospects for maintaining and expanding present bilateral cooperation into an effective non-proliferation arrangement. (author)

  10. Uniqueness of time-independent electromagnetic fields

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Karlsson, Per W.

    1974-01-01

    As a comment on a recent paper by Steele, a more general uniqueness theorem for time-independent fields is mentioned. ©1974 American Institute of Physics......As a comment on a recent paper by Steele, a more general uniqueness theorem for time-independent fields is mentioned. ©1974 American Institute of Physics...

  11. Unique specification of Yang-Mills solutions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Campbell, W.B.; Joseph, D.W.; Morgan, T.A.

    1980-01-01

    Screened time-independent cylindrically-symmetric solutions of Yang-Mills equations are given which show that the source does not uniquely determine the field. However, these particular solutions suggest a natural way of uniquely specifying solutions in terms of a physical realization of a symmetry group. (orig.)

  12. Constructing Dense Graphs with Unique Hamiltonian Cycles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynch, Mark A. M.

    2012-01-01

    It is not difficult to construct dense graphs containing Hamiltonian cycles, but it is difficult to generate dense graphs that are guaranteed to contain a unique Hamiltonian cycle. This article presents an algorithm for generating arbitrarily large simple graphs containing "unique" Hamiltonian cycles. These graphs can be turned into dense graphs…

  13. Complement and the control of HIV infection: an evolving story.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, Michael M; Hester, Christopher; Jiang, Haixiang

    2014-05-01

    Thirty years ago, investigators isolated and later determined the structure of HIV-1 and its envelope proteins. Using techniques that were effective with other viruses, they prepared vaccines designed to generate antibody or T-cell responses, but they were ineffective in clinical trials. In this article, we consider the role of complement in host defense against enveloped viruses, the role it might play in the antibody response and why complement has not controlled HIV-1 infection. Complement consists of a large group of cell-bound and plasma proteins that are an integral part of the innate immune system. They provide a first line of defense against microbes and also play a role in the immune response. Here we review the studies of complement-mediated HIV destruction and the role of complement in the HIV antibody response. HIV-1 has evolved a complex defense to prevent complement-mediated killing reviewed here. As part of these studies, we have discovered that HIV-1 envelope, on administration into animals, is rapidly broken down into small peptides that may prove to be very inefficient at provident the type of antigenic stimulation that leads to an effective immune response. Improving complement binding and stabilizing envelope may improve the vaccine response.

  14. The genotype-phenotype map of an evolving digital organism

    OpenAIRE

    Fortuna, Miguel A.; Zaman, Luis; Ofria, Charles; Wagner, Andreas

    2017-01-01

    To understand how evolving systems bring forth novel and useful phenotypes, it is essential to understand the relationship between genotypic and phenotypic change. Artificial evolving systems can help us understand whether the genotype-phenotype maps of natural evolving systems are highly unusual, and it may help create evolvable artificial systems. Here we characterize the genotype-phenotype map of digital organisms in Avida, a platform for digital evolution. We consider digital organisms fr...

  15. UNiquant, a Program for Quantitative Proteomics Analysis Using Stable Isotope Labeling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huang, Xin; Tolmachev, Aleksey V.; Shen, Yulei; Liu, Miao; Huang, Lin; Zhang, Zhixin; Anderson, Gordon A.; Smith, Richard D.; Chan, Wing C.; Hinrichs, Steven; Fu, Kai; Ding, Shi-Jian

    2011-03-04

    We present UNiquant, a new software program for analyzing stable isotope labeling (SIL) based quantitative proteomics data. UNiquant surpassed the performance of two other platforms, MaxQuant and Mascot Distiller, using complex proteome mixtures having either known or unknown heavy/light ratios. UNiquant is compatible with a broad spectrum of search engines and SIL methods, providing outstanding peptide pair identification and accurate measurement of the relative peptide/protein abundance.

  16. Macroscopic Theory for Evolving Biological Systems Akin to Thermodynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaneko, Kunihiko; Furusawa, Chikara

    2018-05-20

    We present a macroscopic theory to characterize the plasticity, robustness, and evolvability of biological responses and their fluctuations. First, linear approximation in intracellular reaction dynamics is used to demonstrate proportional changes in the expression of all cellular components in response to a given environmental stress, with the proportion coefficient determined by the change in growth rate as a consequence of the steady growth of cells. We further demonstrate that this relationship is supported through adaptation experiments of bacteria, perhaps too well as this proportionality is held even across cultures of different types of conditions. On the basis of simulations of cell models, we further show that this global proportionality is a consequence of evolution in which expression changes in response to environmental or genetic perturbations are constrained along a unique one-dimensional curve, which is a result of evolutionary robustness. It then follows that the expression changes induced by environmental changes are proportionally reduced across different components of a cell by evolution, which is akin to the Le Chatelier thermodynamics principle. Finally, with the aid of a fluctuation-response relationship, this proportionality is shown to hold between fluctuations caused by genetic changes and those caused by noise. Overall, these results and support from the theoretical and experimental literature suggest a formulation of cellular systems akin to thermodynamics, in which a macroscopic potential is given by the growth rate (or fitness) represented as a function of environmental and evolutionary changes.

  17. An evolving joint space campaign concept and the Army's role

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franke, Henry G., III

    1992-05-01

    This monograph examines the question of an evolving joint space campaign concept and the Army's role in it over the next 20 years. Analysis progresses logically through a series of topics in order to arrive at a complete picture of this evolutionary space campaign concept, as well as the Army's place in it. Space plays an increasingly important role in US military operations, particularly when tied together with advances in information management. The synergistic impact due to the combination of these two areas suggests a revolution in the nature of modern warfare which saw its emergence during the 1991 Gulf War. With this theme in mind, I review the Army's roles, missions, and historical involvement in space, then present technological opportunities and a perspective on investment strategies for military space. A detailed discussion of a near-term military space theory and current space doctrines supports the need for an accepted military space theory as a foundation for Joint and Service space doctrines, space campaign design and conduct, and space force generation. The basis for such a theory is established using Julian Corbett's maritime warfare theory as a point of departure, while recognizing that space as a unique military operating medium requires its own theory and a regime to govern the application of space forces.

  18. Competitive Advantage and its Sources in an Evolving Market

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaridis, Apostolos D.

    2009-08-01

    In a continuously altered and evolving Market, as is the food manufacturing market, the main and long-lasting objective of firm that is the maximization of its wealth and consequently the continuous remaining in profit regions, appears that it is possible to be achieved via the obtainment and maintenance of diachronically long-term competitive advantage, which it will render the firm unique or leader force in a inexorable competition that is continuously extended in a globalized market. Various definitions and different regards are developed in regard to the competitive advantage and the way with which a firm it is possible, acquiring it, to star in the market in which it is activated. As result of sustainable competitive advantage in a firm comes the above the average performance. Abundance of resources and competences that are proposed as sources of competitive advantage in the resource-based view literature exists, while they are added continuously new based on empiric studies. In any case, it appears to suffer hierarchy of sources of competitive advantage, with regard to sustainability of these.

  19. Self-evolving atomistic kinetic Monte Carlo: fundamentals and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xu Haixuan; Osetsky, Yuri N; Stoller, Roger E

    2012-01-01

    The fundamentals of the framework and the details of each component of the self-evolving atomistic kinetic Monte Carlo (SEAKMC) are presented. The strength of this new technique is the ability to simulate dynamic processes with atomistic fidelity that is comparable to molecular dynamics (MD) but on a much longer time scale. The observation that the dimer method preferentially finds the saddle point (SP) with the lowest energy is investigated and found to be true only for defects with high symmetry. In order to estimate the fidelity of dynamics and accuracy of the simulation time, a general criterion is proposed and applied to two representative problems. Applications of SEAKMC for investigating the diffusion of interstitials and vacancies in bcc iron are presented and compared directly with MD simulations, demonstrating that SEAKMC provides results that formerly could be obtained only through MD. The correlation factor for interstitial diffusion in the dumbbell configuration, which is extremely difficult to obtain using MD, is predicted using SEAKMC. The limitations of SEAKMC are also discussed. The paper presents a comprehensive picture of the SEAKMC method in both its unique predictive capabilities and technically important details.

  20. Evolving cellular automata for diversity generation and pattern recognition: deterministic versus random strategy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Menezes, Marcio Argollo; Brigatti, Edgardo; Schwämmle, Veit

    2013-01-01

    Microbiological systems evolve to fulfil their tasks with maximal efficiency. The immune system is a remarkable example, where the distinction between self and non-self is made by means of molecular interaction between self-proteins and antigens, triggering affinity-dependent systemic actions. Specificity of this binding and the infinitude of potential antigenic patterns call for novel mechanisms to generate antibody diversity. Inspired by this problem, we develop a genetic algorithm where agents evolve their strings in the presence of random antigenic strings and reproduce with affinity-dependent rates. We ask what is the best strategy to generate diversity if agents can rearrange their strings a finite number of times. We find that endowing each agent with an inheritable cellular automaton rule for performing rearrangements makes the system more efficient in pattern-matching than if transformations are totally random. In the former implementation, the population evolves to a stationary state where agents with different automata rules coexist. (paper)

  1. Core and Shell Song Systems Unique to the Parrot Brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chakraborty, Mukta; Walløe, Solveig; Nedergaard, Signe; Fridel, Emma E.; Dabelsteen, Torben; Pakkenberg, Bente; Bertelsen, Mads F.; Dorrestein, Gerry M.; Brauth, Steven E.; Durand, Sarah E.; Jarvis, Erich D.

    2015-01-01

    The ability to imitate complex sounds is rare, and among birds has been found only in parrots, songbirds, and hummingbirds. Parrots exhibit the most advanced vocal mimicry among non-human animals. A few studies have noted differences in connectivity, brain position and shape in the vocal learning systems of parrots relative to songbirds and hummingbirds. However, only one parrot species, the budgerigar, has been examined and no differences in the presence of song system structures were found with other avian vocal learners. Motivated by questions of whether there are important differences in the vocal systems of parrots relative to other vocal learners, we used specialized constitutive gene expression, singing-driven gene expression, and neural connectivity tracing experiments to further characterize the song system of budgerigars and/or other parrots. We found that the parrot brain uniquely contains a song system within a song system. The parrot “core” song system is similar to the song systems of songbirds and hummingbirds, whereas the “shell” song system is unique to parrots. The core with only rudimentary shell regions were found in the New Zealand kea, representing one of the only living species at a basal divergence with all other parrots, implying that parrots evolved vocal learning systems at least 29 million years ago. Relative size differences in the core and shell regions occur among species, which we suggest could be related to species differences in vocal and cognitive abilities. PMID:26107173

  2. The Evolving Complexity of the Podocyte Cytoskeleton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schell, Christoph; Huber, Tobias B

    2017-11-01

    Podocytes exhibit a unique cytoskeletal architecture that is fundamentally linked to their function in maintaining the kidney filtration barrier. The cytoskeleton regulates podocyte shape, structure, stability, slit diaphragm insertion, adhesion, plasticity, and dynamic response to environmental stimuli. Genetic mutations demonstrate that even slight impairment of the podocyte cytoskeletal apparatus results in proteinuria and glomerular disease. Moreover, mechanisms underpinning all acquired glomerular pathologies converge on disruption of the cytoskeleton, suggesting that this subcellular structure could be targeted for therapeutic purposes. This review summarizes our current understanding of the function of the cytoskeleton in podocytes and the associated implications for pathophysiology. Copyright © 2017 by the American Society of Nephrology.

  3. Uniqueness conditions for finitely dependent random fields

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dobrushin, R.L.; Pecherski, E.A.

    1981-01-01

    The authors consider a random field for which uniqueness and some additional conditions guaranteeing that the correlations between the variables of the field decrease rapidly enough with the distance between the values of the parameter occur. The main result of the paper states that in such a case uniqueness is true for any other field with transition probabilities sufficiently close to those of the original field. Then they apply this result to some ''degenerate'' classes of random fields for which one can check this condition of correlation to decay, and thus obtain some new conditions of uniqueness. (Auth.)

  4. A rice kinase-protein interaction map.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Xiaodong; Richter, Todd; Chen, Mei; Fujii, Hiroaki; Seo, Young Su; Xie, Mingtang; Zheng, Xianwu; Kanrar, Siddhartha; Stevenson, Rebecca A; Dardick, Christopher; Li, Ying; Jiang, Hao; Zhang, Yan; Yu, Fahong; Bartley, Laura E; Chern, Mawsheng; Bart, Rebecca; Chen, Xiuhua; Zhu, Lihuang; Farmerie, William G; Gribskov, Michael; Zhu, Jian-Kang; Fromm, Michael E; Ronald, Pamela C; Song, Wen-Yuan

    2009-03-01

    Plants uniquely contain large numbers of protein kinases, and for the vast majority of the 1,429 kinases predicted in the rice (Oryza sativa) genome, little is known of their functions. Genetic approaches often fail to produce observable phenotypes; thus, new strategies are needed to delineate kinase function. We previously developed a cost-effective high-throughput yeast two-hybrid system. Using this system, we have generated a protein interaction map of 116 representative rice kinases and 254 of their interacting proteins. Overall, the resulting interaction map supports a large number of known or predicted kinase-protein interactions from both plants and animals and reveals many new functional insights. Notably, we found a potential widespread role for E3 ubiquitin ligases in pathogen defense signaling mediated by receptor-like kinases, particularly by the kinases that may have evolved from recently expanded kinase subfamilies in rice. We anticipate that the data provided here will serve as a foundation for targeted functional studies in rice and other plants. The application of yeast two-hybrid and TAPtag analyses for large-scale plant protein interaction studies is also discussed.

  5. The evolving energy budget of accretionary wedges

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBeck, Jessica; Cooke, Michele; Maillot, Bertrand; Souloumiac, Pauline

    2017-04-01

    The energy budget of evolving accretionary systems reveals how deformational processes partition energy as faults slip, topography uplifts, and layer-parallel shortening produces distributed off-fault deformation. The energy budget provides a quantitative framework for evaluating the energetic contribution or consumption of diverse deformation mechanisms. We investigate energy partitioning in evolving accretionary prisms by synthesizing data from physical sand accretion experiments and numerical accretion simulations. We incorporate incremental strain fields and cumulative force measurements from two suites of experiments to design numerical simulations that represent accretionary wedges with stronger and weaker detachment faults. One suite of the physical experiments includes a basal glass bead layer and the other does not. Two physical experiments within each suite implement different boundary conditions (stable base versus moving base configuration). Synthesizing observations from the differing base configurations reduces the influence of sidewall friction because the force vector produced by sidewall friction points in opposite directions depending on whether the base is fixed or moving. With the numerical simulations, we calculate the energy budget at two stages of accretion: at the maximum force preceding the development of the first thrust pair, and at the minimum force following the development of the pair. To identify the appropriate combination of material and fault properties to apply in the simulations, we systematically vary the Young's modulus and the fault static and dynamic friction coefficients in numerical accretion simulations, and identify the set of parameters that minimizes the misfit between the normal force measured on the physical backwall and the numerically simulated force. Following this derivation of the appropriate material and fault properties, we calculate the components of the work budget in the numerical simulations and in the

  6. On the Critical Role of Divergent Selection in Evolvability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joel Lehman

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available An ambitious goal in evolutionary robotics is to evolve increasingly complex robotic behaviors with minimal human design effort. Reaching this goal requires evolutionary algorithms that can unlock from genetic encodings their latent potential for evolvability. One issue clouding this goal is conceptual confusion about evolvability, which often obscures the aspects of evolvability that are important or desirable. The danger from such confusion is that it may establish unrealistic goals for evolvability that prove unproductive in practice. An important issue separate from conceptual confusion is the common misalignment between selection and evolvability in evolutionary robotics. While more expressive encodings can represent higher-level adaptations (e.g. sexual reproduction or developmental systems that increase long-term evolutionary potential (i.e. evolvability, realizing such potential requires gradients of fitness and evolvability to align. In other words, selection is often a critical factor limiting increasing evolvability. Thus, drawing from a series of recent papers, this article seeks to both (1 clarify and focus the ways in which the term evolvability is used within artificial evolution, and (2 argue for the importance of one type of selection, i.e. divergent selection, for enabling evolvability. The main argument is that there is a fundamental connection between divergent selection and evolvability (on both the individual and population level that does not hold for typical goal-oriented selection. The conclusion is that selection pressure plays a critical role in realizing the potential for evolvability, and that divergent selection in particular provides a principled mechanism for encouraging evolvability in artificial evolution.

  7. The Protein Model Portal

    OpenAIRE

    Arnold, Konstantin; Kiefer, Florian; Kopp, J?rgen; Battey, James N. D.; Podvinec, Michael; Westbrook, John D.; Berman, Helen M.; Bordoli, Lorenza; Schwede, Torsten

    2008-01-01

    Structural Genomics has been successful in determining the structures of many unique proteins in a high throughput manner. Still, the number of known protein sequences is much larger than the number of experimentally solved protein structures. Homology (or comparative) modeling methods make use of experimental protein structures to build models for evolutionary related proteins. Thereby, experimental structure determination efforts and homology modeling complement each other in the exploratio...

  8. Tattoos and piercings: bodily expressions of uniqueness?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tiggemann, Marika; Hopkins, Louise A

    2011-06-01

    The study aimed to investigate the motivations underlying the body modification practices of tattooing and piercing. There were 80 participants recruited from an Australian music store, who provided descriptions of their tattoos and piercings and completed measures of need for uniqueness, appearance investment and distinctive appearance investment. It was found that tattooed individuals scored significantly higher on need for uniqueness than non-tattooed individuals. Further, individuals with conventional ear piercings scored significantly lower on need for uniqueness than individuals with no piercings or with facial and body piercings. Neither appearance investment nor distinctive appearance investment differed significantly among tattoo or piercing status groups. Strength of identification with music was significantly correlated with number of tattoos, but not number of piercings. It was concluded that tattooing, but not body piercing, represents a bodily expression of uniqueness. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. High Blood Pressure: Unique to Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... our e-newsletter! Aging & Health A to Z High Blood Pressure Hypertension Unique to Older Adults This section provides ... Pressure Targets are Different for Very Old Adults High blood pressure (also called hypertension) increases your chance of having ...

  10. Approximating centrality in evolving graphs: toward sublinearity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Priest, Benjamin W.; Cybenko, George

    2017-05-01

    The identification of important nodes is a ubiquitous problem in the analysis of social networks. Centrality indices (such as degree centrality, closeness centrality, betweenness centrality, PageRank, and others) are used across many domains to accomplish this task. However, the computation of such indices is expensive on large graphs. Moreover, evolving graphs are becoming increasingly important in many applications. It is therefore desirable to develop on-line algorithms that can approximate centrality measures using memory sublinear in the size of the graph. We discuss the challenges facing the semi-streaming computation of many centrality indices. In particular, we apply recent advances in the streaming and sketching literature to provide a preliminary streaming approximation algorithm for degree centrality utilizing CountSketch and a multi-pass semi-streaming approximation algorithm for closeness centrality leveraging a spanner obtained through iteratively sketching the vertex-edge adjacency matrix. We also discuss possible ways forward for approximating betweenness centrality, as well as spectral measures of centrality. We provide a preliminary result using sketched low-rank approximations to approximate the output of the HITS algorithm.

  11. Functional Topology of Evolving Urban Drainage Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Soohyun; Paik, Kyungrock; McGrath, Gavan S.; Urich, Christian; Krueger, Elisabeth; Kumar, Praveen; Rao, P. Suresh C.

    2017-11-01

    We investigated the scaling and topology of engineered urban drainage networks (UDNs) in two cities, and further examined UDN evolution over decades. UDN scaling was analyzed using two power law scaling characteristics widely employed for river networks: (1) Hack's law of length (L)-area (A) [L∝Ah] and (2) exceedance probability distribution of upstream contributing area (δ) [P>(A≥δ>)˜aδ-ɛ]. For the smallest UDNs ((A≥δ>) plots for river networks are abruptly truncated, those for UDNs display exponential tempering [P>(A≥δ>)=aδ-ɛexp⁡>(-cδ>)]. The tempering parameter c decreases as the UDNs grow, implying that the distribution evolves in time to resemble those for river networks. However, the power law exponent ɛ for large UDNs tends to be greater than the range reported for river networks. Differences in generative processes and engineering design constraints contribute to observed differences in the evolution of UDNs and river networks, including subnet heterogeneity and nonrandom branching.

  12. An Evolving Worldview: Making Open Source Easy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, Z.

    2017-12-01

    NASA Worldview is an interactive interface for browsing full-resolution, global satellite imagery. Worldview supports an open data policy so that academia, private industries and the general public can use NASA's satellite data to address Earth science related issues. Worldview was open sourced in 2014. By shifting to an open source approach, the Worldview application has evolved to better serve end-users. Project developers are able to have discussions with end-users and community developers to understand issues and develop new features. Community developers are able to track upcoming features, collaborate on them and make their own contributions. Developers who discover issues are able to address those issues and submit a fix. This reduces the time it takes for a project developer to reproduce an issue or develop a new feature. Getting new developers to contribute to the project has been one of the most important and difficult aspects of open sourcing Worldview. After witnessing potential outside contributors struggle, a focus has been made on making the installation of Worldview simple to reduce the initial learning curve and make contributing code easy. One way we have addressed this is through a simplified setup process. Our setup documentation includes a set of prerequisites and a set of straightforward commands to clone, configure, install and run. This presentation will emphasize our focus to simplify and standardize Worldview's open source code so that more people are able to contribute. The more people who contribute, the better the application will become over time.

  13. Extreme insular dwarfism evolved in a mammoth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herridge, Victoria L; Lister, Adrian M

    2012-08-22

    The insular dwarfism seen in Pleistocene elephants has come to epitomize the island rule; yet our understanding of this phenomenon is hampered by poor taxonomy. For Mediterranean dwarf elephants, where the most extreme cases of insular dwarfism are observed, a key systematic question remains unresolved: are all taxa phyletic dwarfs of a single mainland species Palaeoloxodon antiquus (straight-tusked elephant), or are some referable to Mammuthus (mammoths)? Ancient DNA and geochronological evidence have been used to support a Mammuthus origin for the Cretan 'Palaeoloxodon' creticus, but these studies have been shown to be flawed. On the basis of existing collections and recent field discoveries, we present new, morphological evidence for the taxonomic status of 'P'. creticus, and show that it is indeed a mammoth, most probably derived from Early Pleistocene Mammuthus meridionalis or possibly Late Pliocene Mammuthus rumanus. We also show that Mammuthus creticus is smaller than other known insular dwarf mammoths, and is similar in size to the smallest dwarf Palaeoloxodon species from Sicily and Malta, making it the smallest mammoth species known to have existed. These findings indicate that extreme insular dwarfism has evolved to a similar degree independently in two elephant lineages.

  14. How does cognition evolve? Phylogenetic comparative psychology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacLean, Evan L; Matthews, Luke J; Hare, Brian A; Nunn, Charles L; Anderson, Rindy C; Aureli, Filippo; Brannon, Elizabeth M; Call, Josep; Drea, Christine M; Emery, Nathan J; Haun, Daniel B M; Herrmann, Esther; Jacobs, Lucia F; Platt, Michael L; Rosati, Alexandra G; Sandel, Aaron A; Schroepfer, Kara K; Seed, Amanda M; Tan, Jingzhi; van Schaik, Carel P; Wobber, Victoria

    2012-03-01

    Now more than ever animal studies have the potential to test hypotheses regarding how cognition evolves. Comparative psychologists have developed new techniques to probe the cognitive mechanisms underlying animal behavior, and they have become increasingly skillful at adapting methodologies to test multiple species. Meanwhile, evolutionary biologists have generated quantitative approaches to investigate the phylogenetic distribution and function of phenotypic traits, including cognition. In particular, phylogenetic methods can quantitatively (1) test whether specific cognitive abilities are correlated with life history (e.g., lifespan), morphology (e.g., brain size), or socio-ecological variables (e.g., social system), (2) measure how strongly phylogenetic relatedness predicts the distribution of cognitive skills across species, and (3) estimate the ancestral state of a given cognitive trait using measures of cognitive performance from extant species. Phylogenetic methods can also be used to guide the selection of species comparisons that offer the strongest tests of a priori predictions of cognitive evolutionary hypotheses (i.e., phylogenetic targeting). Here, we explain how an integration of comparative psychology and evolutionary biology will answer a host of questions regarding the phylogenetic distribution and history of cognitive traits, as well as the evolutionary processes that drove their evolution.

  15. An evolving network model with modular growth

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zou Zhi-Yun; Liu Peng; Lei Li; Gao Jian-Zhi

    2012-01-01

    In this paper, we propose an evolving network model growing fast in units of module, according to the analysis of the evolution characteristics in real complex networks. Each module is a small-world network containing several interconnected nodes and the nodes between the modules are linked by preferential attachment on degree of nodes. We study the modularity measure of the proposed model, which can be adjusted by changing the ratio of the number of inner-module edges and the number of inter-module edges. In view of the mean-field theory, we develop an analytical function of the degree distribution, which is verified by a numerical example and indicates that the degree distribution shows characteristics of the small-world network and the scale-free network distinctly at different segments. The clustering coefficient and the average path length of the network are simulated numerically, indicating that the network shows the small-world property and is affected little by the randomness of the new module. (interdisciplinary physics and related areas of science and technology)

  16. How does cognition evolve? Phylogenetic comparative psychology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matthews, Luke J.; Hare, Brian A.; Nunn, Charles L.; Anderson, Rindy C.; Aureli, Filippo; Brannon, Elizabeth M.; Call, Josep; Drea, Christine M.; Emery, Nathan J.; Haun, Daniel B. M.; Herrmann, Esther; Jacobs, Lucia F.; Platt, Michael L.; Rosati, Alexandra G.; Sandel, Aaron A.; Schroepfer, Kara K.; Seed, Amanda M.; Tan, Jingzhi; van Schaik, Carel P.; Wobber, Victoria

    2014-01-01

    Now more than ever animal studies have the potential to test hypotheses regarding how cognition evolves. Comparative psychologists have developed new techniques to probe the cognitive mechanisms underlying animal behavior, and they have become increasingly skillful at adapting methodologies to test multiple species. Meanwhile, evolutionary biologists have generated quantitative approaches to investigate the phylogenetic distribution and function of phenotypic traits, including cognition. In particular, phylogenetic methods can quantitatively (1) test whether specific cognitive abilities are correlated with life history (e.g., lifespan), morphology (e.g., brain size), or socio-ecological variables (e.g., social system), (2) measure how strongly phylogenetic relatedness predicts the distribution of cognitive skills across species, and (3) estimate the ancestral state of a given cognitive trait using measures of cognitive performance from extant species. Phylogenetic methods can also be used to guide the selection of species comparisons that offer the strongest tests of a priori predictions of cognitive evolutionary hypotheses (i.e., phylogenetic targeting). Here, we explain how an integration of comparative psychology and evolutionary biology will answer a host of questions regarding the phylogenetic distribution and history of cognitive traits, as well as the evolutionary processes that drove their evolution. PMID:21927850

  17. A local-world evolving hypernetwork model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yang Guang-Yong; Liu Jian-Guo

    2014-01-01

    Complex hypernetworks are ubiquitous in the real system. It is very important to investigate the evolution mechanisms. In this paper, we present a local-world evolving hypernetwork model by taking into account the hyperedge growth and local-world hyperedge preferential attachment mechanisms. At each time step, a newly added hyperedge encircles a new coming node and a number of nodes from a randomly selected local world. The number of the selected nodes from the local world obeys the uniform distribution and its mean value is m. The analytical and simulation results show that the hyperdegree approximately obeys the power-law form and the exponent of hyperdegree distribution is γ = 2 + 1/m. Furthermore, we numerically investigate the node degree, hyperedge degree, clustering coefficient, as well as the average distance, and find that the hypernetwork model shares the scale-free and small-world properties, which shed some light for deeply understanding the evolution mechanism of the real systems. (interdisciplinary physics and related areas of science and technology)

  18. Evolving autonomous learning in cognitive networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheneman, Leigh; Hintze, Arend

    2017-12-01

    There are two common approaches for optimizing the performance of a machine: genetic algorithms and machine learning. A genetic algorithm is applied over many generations whereas machine learning works by applying feedback until the system meets a performance threshold. These methods have been previously combined, particularly in artificial neural networks using an external objective feedback mechanism. We adapt this approach to Markov Brains, which are evolvable networks of probabilistic and deterministic logic gates. Prior to this work MB could only adapt from one generation to the other, so we introduce feedback gates which augment their ability to learn during their lifetime. We show that Markov Brains can incorporate these feedback gates in such a way that they do not rely on an external objective feedback signal, but instead can generate internal feedback that is then used to learn. This results in a more biologically accurate model of the evolution of learning, which will enable us to study the interplay between evolution and learning and could be another step towards autonomously learning machines.

  19. Orbital Decay in Binaries with Evolved Stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Meng; Arras, Phil; Weinberg, Nevin N.; Troup, Nicholas; Majewski, Steven R.

    2018-01-01

    Two mechanisms are often invoked to explain tidal friction in binary systems. The ``dynamical tide” is the resonant excitation of internal gravity waves by the tide, and their subsequent damping by nonlinear fluid processes or thermal diffusion. The ``equilibrium tide” refers to non-resonant excitation of fluid motion in the star’s convection zone, with damping by interaction with the turbulent eddies. There have been numerous studies of these processes in main sequence stars, but less so on the subgiant and red giant branches. Motivated by the newly discovered close binary systems in the Apache Point Observatory Galactic Evolution Experiment (APOGEE-1), we have performed calculations of both the dynamical and equilibrium tide processes for stars over a range of mass as the star’s cease core hydrogen burning and evolve to shell burning. Even for stars which had a radiative core on the main sequence, the dynamical tide may have very large amplitude in the newly radiative core in post-main sequence, giving rise to wave breaking. The resulting large dynamical tide dissipation rate is compared to the equilibrium tide, and the range of secondary masses and orbital periods over which rapid orbital decay may occur will be discussed, as well as applications to close APOGEE binaries.

  20. Diverticular Disease: Traditional and Evolving Paradigms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamanna, Lenore; Moran, Patricia E

    Diverticular disease includes diverticulosis, which are sac protrusions of the intestinal mucosa, and diverticulitis, inflammation of the diverticula. Diverticular disease is listed as one of the top 10 leading physician diagnoses for gastrointestinal disorders in outpatient clinic visits in the United States. There are several classifications of diverticular disease ranging from asymptomatic diverticulosis to diverticulitis with complications. Several theories are linked to the development of diverticula which includes the physiology of the colon itself, collagen cross-linking, and recently challenged, low-fiber intake. The differential diagnoses of lower abdominal pain in addition to diverticular disease have overlapping signs and symptoms, which can make a diagnosis challenging. Identification of the distinct signs and symptoms of each classification will assist the practitioner in making the correct diagnosis and lead to appropriate management. The findings from recent studies have changed the paradigm of diverticular disease. The purpose of this article is to discuss traditional dogma and evolving concepts in the pathophysiology, prevention, and management of diverticular disease. Practitioners must be knowledgeable about diverticular disease for improved outcomes.

  1. Minority games, evolving capitals and replicator dynamics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Galla, Tobias; Zhang, Yi-Cheng

    2009-01-01

    We discuss a simple version of the minority game (MG) in which agents hold only one strategy each, but in which their capitals evolve dynamically according to their success and in which the total trading volume varies in time accordingly. This feature is known to be crucial for MGs to reproduce stylized facts of real market data. The stationary states and phase diagram of the model can be computed, and we show that the ergodicity breaking phase transition common for MGs, and marked by a divergence of the integrated response, is present also in this simplified model. An analogous majority game turns out to be relatively void of interesting features, and the total capital is found to diverge in time. Introducing a restraining force leads to a model akin to the replicator dynamics of evolutionary game theory, and we demonstrate that here a different type of phase transition is observed. Finally we briefly discuss the relation of this model with one strategy per player to more sophisticated minority games with dynamical capitals and several trading strategies per agent

  2. An evolving model of online bipartite networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Chu-Xu; Zhang, Zi-Ke; Liu, Chuang

    2013-12-01

    Understanding the structure and evolution of online bipartite networks is a significant task since they play a crucial role in various e-commerce services nowadays. Recently, various attempts have been tried to propose different models, resulting in either power-law or exponential degree distributions. However, many empirical results show that the user degree distribution actually follows a shifted power-law distribution, the so-called Mandelbrot’s law, which cannot be fully described by previous models. In this paper, we propose an evolving model, considering two different user behaviors: random and preferential attachment. Extensive empirical results on two real bipartite networks, Delicious and CiteULike, show that the theoretical model can well characterize the structure of real networks for both user and object degree distributions. In addition, we introduce a structural parameter p, to demonstrate that the hybrid user behavior leads to the shifted power-law degree distribution, and the region of power-law tail will increase with the increment of p. The proposed model might shed some lights in understanding the underlying laws governing the structure of real online bipartite networks.

  3. The Evolving Classification of Pulmonary Hypertension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foshat, Michelle; Boroumand, Nahal

    2017-05-01

    - An explosion of information on pulmonary hypertension has occurred during the past few decades. The perception of this disease has shifted from purely clinical to incorporate new knowledge of the underlying pathology. This transfer has occurred in light of advancements in pathophysiology, histology, and molecular medical diagnostics. - To update readers about the evolving understanding of the etiology and pathogenesis of pulmonary hypertension and to demonstrate how pathology has shaped the current classification. - Information presented at the 5 World Symposia on pulmonary hypertension held since 1973, with the last meeting occurring in 2013, was used in this review. - Pulmonary hypertension represents a heterogeneous group of disorders that are differentiated based on differences in clinical, hemodynamic, and histopathologic features. Early concepts of pulmonary hypertension were largely influenced by pharmacotherapy, hemodynamic function, and clinical presentation of the disease. The initial nomenclature for pulmonary hypertension segregated the clinical classifications from pathologic subtypes. Major restructuring of this disease classification occurred between the first and second symposia, which was the first to unite clinical and pathologic information in the categorization scheme. Additional changes were introduced in subsequent meetings, particularly between the third and fourth World Symposia meetings, when additional pathophysiologic information was gained. Discoveries in molecular diagnostics significantly progressed the understanding of idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension. Continued advancements in imaging modalities, mechanistic pathogenicity, and molecular biomarkers will enable physicians to define pulmonary hypertension phenotypes based on the pathobiology and allow for treatment customization.

  4. Evolving application of biomimetic nanostructured hydroxyapatite

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norberto Roveri

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Norberto Roveri, Michele IafiscoLaboratory of Environmental and Biological Structural Chemistry (LEBSC, Dipartimento di Chimica ‘G. Ciamician’, Alma Mater Studiorum, Università di Bologna, Bologna, ItalyAbstract: By mimicking Nature, we can design and synthesize inorganic smart materials that are reactive to biological tissues. These smart materials can be utilized to design innovative third-generation biomaterials, which are able to not only optimize their interaction with biological tissues and environment, but also mimic biogenic materials in their functionalities. The biomedical applications involve increasing the biomimetic levels from chemical composition, structural organization, morphology, mechanical behavior, nanostructure, and bulk and surface chemical–physical properties until the surface becomes bioreactive and stimulates cellular materials. The chemical–physical characteristics of biogenic hydroxyapatites from bone and tooth have been described, in order to point out the elective sides, which are important to reproduce the design of a new biomimetic synthetic hydroxyapatite. This review outlines the evolving applications of biomimetic synthetic calcium phosphates, details the main characteristics of bone and tooth, where the calcium phosphates are present, and discusses the chemical–physical characteristics of biomimetic calcium phosphates, methods of synthesizing them, and some of their biomedical applications.Keywords: hydroxyapatite, nanocrystals, biomimetism, biomaterials, drug delivery, remineralization

  5. Unique caudal plumage of Jeholornis and complex tail evolution in early birds

    OpenAIRE

    O’Connor, Jingmai; Wang, Xiaoli; Sullivan, Corwin; Zheng, Xiaoting; Tubaro, Pablo; Zhang, Xiaomei; Zhou, Zhonghe

    2013-01-01

    The Early Cretaceous bird Jeholornis was previously only known to have a distally restricted ornamental frond of tail feathers. We describe a previously unrecognized fan-shaped tract of feathers situated dorsal to the proximal caudal vertebrae. The position and morphology of these feathers is reminiscent of the specialized upper tail coverts observed in males of some sexually dimorphic neornithines. As in the neornithine tail, the unique “two-tail” plumage in Jeholornis probably evolved as th...

  6. Modularity, comparative cognition and human uniqueness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shettleworth, Sara J

    2012-10-05

    Darwin's claim 'that the difference in mind between man and the higher animals … is certainly one of degree and not of kind' is at the core of the comparative study of cognition. Recent research provides unprecedented support for Darwin's claim as well as new reasons to question it, stimulating new theories of human cognitive uniqueness. This article compares and evaluates approaches to such theories. Some prominent theories propose sweeping domain-general characterizations of the difference in cognitive capabilities and/or mechanisms between adult humans and other animals. Dual-process theories for some cognitive domains propose that adult human cognition shares simple basic processes with that of other animals while additionally including slower-developing and more explicit uniquely human processes. These theories are consistent with a modular account of cognition and the 'core knowledge' account of children's cognitive development. A complementary proposal is that human infants have unique social and/or cognitive adaptations for uniquely human learning. A view of human cognitive architecture as a mosaic of unique and species-general modular and domain-general processes together with a focus on uniquely human developmental mechanisms is consistent with modern evolutionary-developmental biology and suggests new questions for comparative research.

  7. Structural insights into the evolution of a sexy protein: novel topology and restricted backbone flexibility in a hypervariable pheromone from the red-legged salamander, Plethodon shermani.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilburn, Damien B; Bowen, Kathleen E; Doty, Kari A; Arumugam, Sengodagounder; Lane, Andrew N; Feldhoff, Pamela W; Feldhoff, Richard C

    2014-01-01

    In response to pervasive sexual selection, protein sex pheromones often display rapid mutation and accelerated evolution of corresponding gene sequences. For proteins, the general dogma is that structure is maintained even as sequence or function may rapidly change. This phenomenon is well exemplified by the three-finger protein (TFP) superfamily: a diverse class of vertebrate proteins co-opted for many biological functions - such as components of snake venoms, regulators of the complement system, and coordinators of amphibian limb regeneration. All of the >200 structurally characterized TFPs adopt the namesake "three-finger" topology. In male red-legged salamanders, the TFP pheromone Plethodontid Modulating Factor (PMF) is a hypervariable protein such that, through extensive gene duplication and pervasive sexual selection, individual male salamanders express more than 30 unique isoforms. However, it remained unclear how this accelerated evolution affected the protein structure of PMF. Using LC/MS-MS and multidimensional NMR, we report the 3D structure of the most abundant PMF isoform, PMF-G. The high resolution structural ensemble revealed a highly modified TFP structure, including a unique disulfide bonding pattern and loss of secondary structure, that define a novel protein topology with greater backbone flexibility in the third peptide finger. Sequence comparison, models of molecular evolution, and homology modeling together support that this flexible third finger is the most rapidly evolving segment of PMF. Combined with PMF sequence hypervariability, this structural flexibility may enhance the plasticity of PMF as a chemical signal by permitting potentially thousands of structural conformers. We propose that the flexible third finger plays a critical role in PMF:receptor interactions. As female receptors co-evolve, this flexibility may allow PMF to still bind its receptor(s) without the immediate need for complementary mutations. Consequently, this unique

  8. Structural insights into the evolution of a sexy protein: novel topology and restricted backbone flexibility in a hypervariable pheromone from the red-legged salamander, Plethodon shermani.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Damien B Wilburn

    Full Text Available In response to pervasive sexual selection, protein sex pheromones often display rapid mutation and accelerated evolution of corresponding gene sequences. For proteins, the general dogma is that structure is maintained even as sequence or function may rapidly change. This phenomenon is well exemplified by the three-finger protein (TFP superfamily: a diverse class of vertebrate proteins co-opted for many biological functions - such as components of snake venoms, regulators of the complement system, and coordinators of amphibian limb regeneration. All of the >200 structurally characterized TFPs adopt the namesake "three-finger" topology. In male red-legged salamanders, the TFP pheromone Plethodontid Modulating Factor (PMF is a hypervariable protein such that, through extensive gene duplication and pervasive sexual selection, individual male salamanders express more than 30 unique isoforms. However, it remained unclear how this accelerated evolution affected the protein structure of PMF. Using LC/MS-MS and multidimensional NMR, we report the 3D structure of the most abundant PMF isoform, PMF-G. The high resolution structural ensemble revealed a highly modified TFP structure, including a unique disulfide bonding pattern and loss of secondary structure, that define a novel protein topology with greater backbone flexibility in the third peptide finger. Sequence comparison, models of molecular evolution, and homology modeling together support that this flexible third finger is the most rapidly evolving segment of PMF. Combined with PMF sequence hypervariability, this structural flexibility may enhance the plasticity of PMF as a chemical signal by permitting potentially thousands of structural conformers. We propose that the flexible third finger plays a critical role in PMF:receptor interactions. As female receptors co-evolve, this flexibility may allow PMF to still bind its receptor(s without the immediate need for complementary mutations. Consequently

  9. Diversity Generation in Evolving Microbial Populations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Markussen, Trine

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections in the airways of patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) offer opportunities to study bacterial evolution and adaptation in natural environments. Significantly phenotypic and genomic changes of P. aeruginosa have been observed during chronic infection. While P. aeruginosa...... bacterial genome sequencing, phenotypic profiling and unique sampling materials which included clonal bacterial isolates sampled for more than 4 decades from chronically infected CF patients, we were able to investigate the diversity generation of the clinical important and highly successful P. aeruginosa...... DK1 clone type during chronic airway infection in CF patients. We show here that diversification of P. aeruginosa DK1 occurs through the emergence of coexisting subpopulations with distinct phenotypic and genomic features and demonstrate that this diversification was a result of niche specialization...

  10. Diverse CRISPRs evolving in human microbiomes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mina Rho

    Full Text Available CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats loci, together with cas (CRISPR-associated genes, form the CRISPR/Cas adaptive immune system, a primary defense strategy that eubacteria and archaea mobilize against foreign nucleic acids, including phages and conjugative plasmids. Short spacer sequences separated by the repeats are derived from foreign DNA and direct interference to future infections. The availability of hundreds of shotgun metagenomic datasets from the Human Microbiome Project (HMP enables us to explore the distribution and diversity of known CRISPRs in human-associated microbial communities and to discover new CRISPRs. We propose a targeted assembly strategy to reconstruct CRISPR arrays, which whole-metagenome assemblies fail to identify. For each known CRISPR type (identified from reference genomes, we use its direct repeat consensus sequence to recruit reads from each HMP dataset and then assemble the recruited reads into CRISPR loci; the unique spacer sequences can then be extracted for analysis. We also identified novel CRISPRs or new CRISPR variants in contigs from whole-metagenome assemblies and used targeted assembly to more comprehensively identify these CRISPRs across samples. We observed that the distributions of CRISPRs (including 64 known and 86 novel ones are largely body-site specific. We provide detailed analysis of several CRISPR loci, including novel CRISPRs. For example, known streptococcal CRISPRs were identified in most oral microbiomes, totaling ∼8,000 unique spacers: samples resampled from the same individual and oral site shared the most spacers; different oral sites from the same individual shared significantly fewer, while different individuals had almost no common spacers, indicating the impact of subtle niche differences on the evolution of CRISPR defenses. We further demonstrate potential applications of CRISPRs to the tracing of rare species and the virus exposure of individuals

  11. Quantum mechanics in an evolving Hilbert space

    Science.gov (United States)

    Artacho, Emilio; O'Regan, David D.

    2017-03-01

    Many basis sets for electronic structure calculations evolve with varying external parameters, such as moving atoms in dynamic simulations, giving rise to extra derivative terms in the dynamical equations. Here we revisit these derivatives in the context of differential geometry, thereby obtaining a more transparent formalization, and a geometrical perspective for better understanding the resulting equations. The effect of the evolution of the basis set within the spanned Hilbert space separates explicitly from the effect of the turning of the space itself when moving in parameter space, as the tangent space turns when moving in a curved space. New insights are obtained using familiar concepts in that context such as the Riemann curvature. The differential geometry is not strictly that for curved spaces as in general relativity, a more adequate mathematical framework being provided by fiber bundles. The language used here, however, will be restricted to tensors and basic quantum mechanics. The local gauge implied by a smoothly varying basis set readily connects with Berry's formalism for geometric phases. Generalized expressions for the Berry connection and curvature are obtained for a parameter-dependent occupied Hilbert space spanned by nonorthogonal Wannier functions. The formalism is applicable to basis sets made of atomic-like orbitals and also more adaptative moving basis functions (such as in methods using Wannier functions as intermediate or support bases), but should also apply to other situations in which nonorthogonal functions or related projectors should arise. The formalism is applied to the time-dependent quantum evolution of electrons for moving atoms. The geometric insights provided here allow us to propose new finite-difference time integrators, and also better understand those already proposed.

  12. Public participation at Fernald: FERMCO's evolving role

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Williams, J.B.; Fellman, R.W.; Brettschneider, D.J.

    1995-01-01

    In an effort to improve public involvement in the site restoration decision making process, the DOE has established site specific advisory boards, of which the Fernald Citizens Task Force is one. The Fernald Task Force is focused on making recommendations in four areas: (1) What should be the future use of the site? (2) Determinations of cleanup levels (how clean is clean?) (3) Where should the wastes be disposed of? (4) What should be the cleanup priorities? Because these questions are being asked very early in the decision-making process, the answers are necessarily qualified, and are based on a combination of preliminary data, assumptions, and professional judgment. The requirement to make progress in the absence of accurate data has necessitated FERMCO and the Task Force to employ an approach similar to sensitivity analysis, in which a range of possible data values are evaluated and the relative importance of the various factors is assessed. Because of its charter to provide recommendations of future site use, the Task Force has developed a sitewide perspective, compared to the more common operable unit specific focus of public participation under CERCLA. The relationship between FERMCO and the Task Force is evolving toward one of partnership with DOE in managing the obstacles and hidden opportunities for success. The Task Force likely will continue to participate in the Fernald project long after its initial recommendations have been made. DOE already has made the commitment that the process of public participation will extend into the Remedial Design phase. There is substantial reason for optimism that continuing the Task Force process through the design phase will assist in developing the appropriate balance of cost and engineered protectiveness

  13. A rapidly evolving secretome builds and patterns a sea shell

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Green Kathryn

    2006-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Instructions to fabricate mineralized structures with distinct nanoscale architectures, such as seashells and coral and vertebrate skeletons, are encoded in the genomes of a wide variety of animals. In mollusks, the mantle is responsible for the extracellular production of the shell, directing the ordered biomineralization of CaCO3 and the deposition of architectural and color patterns. The evolutionary origins of the ability to synthesize calcified structures across various metazoan taxa remain obscure, with only a small number of protein families identified from molluskan shells. The recent sequencing of a wide range of metazoan genomes coupled with the analysis of gene expression in non-model animals has allowed us to investigate the evolution and process of biomineralization in gastropod mollusks. Results Here we show that over 25% of the genes expressed in the mantle of the vetigastropod Haliotis asinina encode secreted proteins, indicating that hundreds of proteins are likely to be contributing to shell fabrication and patterning. Almost 85% of the secretome encodes novel proteins; remarkably, only 19% of these have identifiable homologues in the full genome of the patellogastropod Lottia scutum. The spatial expression profiles of mantle genes that belong to the secretome is restricted to discrete mantle zones, with each zone responsible for the fabrication of one of the structural layers of the shell. Patterned expression of a subset of genes along the length of the mantle is indicative of roles in shell ornamentation. For example, Has-sometsuke maps precisely to pigmentation patterns in the shell, providing the first case of a gene product to be involved in molluskan shell pigmentation. We also describe the expression of two novel genes involved in nacre (mother of pearl deposition. Conclusion The unexpected complexity and evolvability of this secretome and the modular design of the molluskan mantle enables

  14. The first venomous crustacean revealed by transcriptomics and functional morphology: remipede venom glands express a unique toxin cocktail dominated by enzymes and a neurotoxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Reumont, Björn M; Blanke, Alexander; Richter, Sandy; Alvarez, Fernando; Bleidorn, Christoph; Jenner, Ronald A

    2014-01-01

    Animal venoms have evolved many times. Venomous species are especially common in three of the four main groups of arthropods (Chelicerata, Myriapoda, and Hexapoda), which together represent tens of thousands of species of venomous spiders, scorpions, centipedes, and hymenopterans. Surprisingly, despite their great diversity of body plans, there is no unambiguous evidence that any crustacean is venomous. We provide the first conclusive evidence that the aquatic, blind, and cave-dwelling remipede crustaceans are venomous and that venoms evolved in all four major arthropod groups. We produced a three-dimensional reconstruction of the venom delivery apparatus of the remipede Speleonectes tulumensis, showing that remipedes can inject venom in a controlled manner. A transcriptomic profile of its venom glands shows that they express a unique cocktail of transcripts coding for known venom toxins, including a diversity of enzymes and a probable paralytic neurotoxin very similar to one described from spider venom. We screened a transcriptomic library obtained from whole animals and identified a nontoxin paralog of the remipede neurotoxin that is not expressed in the venom glands. This allowed us to reconstruct its probable evolutionary origin and underlines the importance of incorporating data derived from nonvenom gland tissue to elucidate the evolution of candidate venom proteins. This first glimpse into the venom of a crustacean and primitively aquatic arthropod reveals conspicuous differences from the venoms of other predatory arthropods such as centipedes, scorpions, and spiders and contributes valuable information for ultimately disentangling the many factors shaping the biology and evolution of venoms and venomous species.

  15. Grasping convergent evolution in syngnathids: a unique tale of tails

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neutens, C; Adriaens, D; Christiaens, J; De Kegel, B; Dierick, M; Boistel, R; Van Hoorebeke, L

    2014-01-01

    Seahorses and pipehorses both possess a prehensile tail, a unique characteristic among teleost fishes, allowing them to grasp and hold onto substrates such as sea grasses. Although studies have focused on tail grasping, the pattern of evolutionary transformations that made this possible is poorly understood. Recent phylogenetic studies show that the prehensile tail evolved independently in different syngnathid lineages, including seahorses, Haliichthys taeniophorus and several types of so-called pipehorses. This study explores the pattern that characterizes this convergent evolution towards a prehensile tail, by comparing the caudal musculoskeletal organization, as well as passive bending capacities in pipefish (representing the ancestral state), pipehorse, seahorse and H. taeniophorus. To study the complex musculoskeletal morphology, histological sectioning, μCT-scanning and phase contrast synchrotron scanning were combined with virtual 3D-reconstructions. Results suggest that the independent evolution towards tail grasping in syngnathids reflects at least two quite different strategies in which the ancestral condition of a heavy plated and rigid system became modified into a highly flexible one. Intermediate skeletal morphologies (between the ancestral condition and seahorses) could be found in the pygmy pipehorses and H. taeniophorus, which are phylogenetically closely affiliated with seahorses. This study suggests that the characteristic parallel myoseptal organization as already described in seahorse (compared with a conical organization in pipefish and pipehorse) may not be a necessity for grasping, but represents an apomorphy for seahorses, as this pattern is not found in other syngnathid species possessing a prehensile tail. One could suggest that the functionality of grasping evolved before the specialized, parallel myoseptal organization seen in seahorses. However, as the grasping system in pipehorses is a totally different one, this cannot be

  16. Genetic structure and evolved malaria resistance in Hawaiian honeycreepers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, J.T.; Woodworth, B.L.; Eggert, L.E.; Hart, P.J.; Palmer, D.; Duffy, D.C.; Fleischer, R.C.

    2007-01-01

    Infectious diseases now threaten wildlife populations worldwide but population recovery following local extinction has rarely been observed. In such a case, do resistant individuals recolonize from a central remnant population, or do they spread from small, perhaps overlooked, populations of resistant individuals? Introduced avian malaria (Plasmodium relictum) has devastated low-elevation populations of native birds in Hawaii, but at least one species (Hawaii amakihi, Hemignathus virens) that was greatly reduced at elevations below about 1000 m tolerates malaria and has initiated a remarkable and rapid recovery. We assessed mitochondrial and nuclear DNA markers from amakihi and two other Hawaiian honeycreepers, apapane (Himatione sanguinea) and iiwi (Vestiaria coccinea), at nine primary study sites from 2001 to 2003 to determine the source of re-establishing birds. In addition, we obtained sequences from tissue from amakihi museum study skins (1898 and 1948-49) to assess temporal changes in allele distributions. We found that amakihi in lowland areas are, and have historically been, differentiated from birds at high elevations and had unique alleles retained through time; that is, their genetic signature was not a subset of the genetic variation at higher elevations. We suggest that high disease pressure rapidly selected for resistance to malaria at low elevation, leaving small pockets of resistant birds, and this resistance spread outward from the scattered remnant populations. Low-elevation amakihi are currently isolated from higher elevations (> 1000 m) where disease emergence and transmission rates appear to vary seasonally and annually. In contrast to results from amakihi, no genetic differentiation between elevations was found in apapane and iiwi, indicating that slight variation in genetic or life-history attributes can determine disease resistance and population recovery. Determining the conditions that allow for the development of resistance to disease is

  17. Adoption of Geospatial Systems towards evolving Sustainable Himalayan Mountain Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murthy, M. S. R.; Bajracharya, B.; Pradhan, S.; Shestra, B.; Bajracharya, R.; Shakya, K.; Wesselmann, S.; Ali, M.; Bajracharya, S.; Pradhan, S.

    2014-11-01

    Natural resources dependence of mountain communities, rapid social and developmental changes, disaster proneness and climate change are conceived as the critical factors regulating sustainable Himalayan mountain development. The Himalayan region posed by typical geographic settings, diverse physical and cultural diversity present a formidable challenge to collect and manage data, information and understands varied socio-ecological settings. Recent advances in earth observation, near real-time data, in-situ measurements and in combination of information and communication technology have transformed the way we collect, process, and generate information and how we use such information for societal benefits. Glacier dynamics, land cover changes, disaster risk reduction systems, food security and ecosystem conservation are a few thematic areas where geospatial information and knowledge have significantly contributed to informed decision making systems over the region. The emergence and adoption of near-real time systems, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), board-scale citizen science (crowd-sourcing), mobile services and mapping, and cloud computing have paved the way towards developing automated environmental monitoring systems, enhanced scientific understanding of geophysical and biophysical processes, coupled management of socio-ecological systems and community based adaptation models tailored to mountain specific environment. There are differentiated capacities among the ICIMOD regional member countries with regard to utilization of earth observation and geospatial technologies. The region can greatly benefit from a coordinated and collaborative approach to capture the opportunities offered by earth observation and geospatial technologies. The regional level data sharing, knowledge exchange, and Himalayan GEO supporting geospatial platforms, spatial data infrastructure, unique region specific satellite systems to address trans-boundary challenges would go a long way in

  18. Signatures of pleiotropy, economy and convergent evolution in a domain-resolved map of human-virus protein-protein interaction networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Garamszegi

    Full Text Available A central challenge in host-pathogen systems biology is the elucidation of general, systems-level principles that distinguish host-pathogen interactions from within-host interactions. Current analyses of host-pathogen and within-host protein-protein interaction networks are largely limited by their resolution, treating proteins as nodes and interactions as edges. Here, we construct a domain-resolved map of human-virus and within-human protein-protein interaction networks by annotating protein interactions with high-coverage, high-accuracy, domain-centric interaction mechanisms: (1 domain-domain interactions, in which a domain in one protein binds to a domain in a second protein, and (2 domain-motif interactions, in which a domain in one protein binds to a short, linear peptide motif in a second protein. Analysis of these domain-resolved networks reveals, for the first time, significant mechanistic differences between virus-human and within-human interactions at the resolution of single domains. While human proteins tend to compete with each other for domain binding sites by means of sequence similarity, viral proteins tend to compete with human proteins for domain binding sites in the absence of sequence similarity. Independent of their previously established preference for targeting human protein hubs, viral proteins also preferentially target human proteins containing linear motif-binding domains. Compared to human proteins, viral proteins participate in more domain-motif interactions, target more unique linear motif-binding domains per residue, and contain more unique linear motifs per residue. Together, these results suggest that viruses surmount genome size constraints by convergently evolving multiple short linear motifs in order to effectively mimic, hijack, and manipulate complex host processes for their survival. Our domain-resolved analyses reveal unique signatures of pleiotropy, economy, and convergent evolution in viral

  19. Signatures of pleiotropy, economy and convergent evolution in a domain-resolved map of human-virus protein-protein interaction networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garamszegi, Sara; Franzosa, Eric A; Xia, Yu

    2013-01-01

    A central challenge in host-pathogen systems biology is the elucidation of general, systems-level principles that distinguish host-pathogen interactions from within-host interactions. Current analyses of host-pathogen and within-host protein-protein interaction networks are largely limited by their resolution, treating proteins as nodes and interactions as edges. Here, we construct a domain-resolved map of human-virus and within-human protein-protein interaction networks by annotating protein interactions with high-coverage, high-accuracy, domain-centric interaction mechanisms: (1) domain-domain interactions, in which a domain in one protein binds to a domain in a second protein, and (2) domain-motif interactions, in which a domain in one protein binds to a short, linear peptide motif in a second protein. Analysis of these domain-resolved networks reveals, for the first time, significant mechanistic differences between virus-human and within-human interactions at the resolution of single domains. While human proteins tend to compete with each other for domain binding sites by means of sequence similarity, viral proteins tend to compete with human proteins for domain binding sites in the absence of sequence similarity. Independent of their previously established preference for targeting human protein hubs, viral proteins also preferentially target human proteins containing linear motif-binding domains. Compared to human proteins, viral proteins participate in more domain-motif interactions, target more unique linear motif-binding domains per residue, and contain more unique linear motifs per residue. Together, these results suggest that viruses surmount genome size constraints by convergently evolving multiple short linear motifs in order to effectively mimic, hijack, and manipulate complex host processes for their survival. Our domain-resolved analyses reveal unique signatures of pleiotropy, economy, and convergent evolution in viral-host interactions that are

  20. Evolving R Coronae Borealis Stars with MESA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clayton, Geoffrey C.; Lauer, Amber; Chatzopoulos, Emmanouil; Frank, Juhan

    2018-01-01

    being a WD. Solving the mystery of how the RCB stars evolve will lead to a better understanding of other important types of stellar merger events such as Type Ia SNe.

  1. The evolving integrated vascular surgery residency curriculum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Brigitte K; Greenberg, Jacob A; Mitchell, Erica L

    2014-10-01

    PDs voiced concern over the lack of standardization among the differing programs and most of the PDs agree that some degree of programmatic standardization is critical for the continued success of the 0 + 5 training paradigm. Qualitative evaluation of PD experiences with the development of 0 + 5 vascular surgery residency programs reveals the key factors that commonly influence program design. Programs continue to evolve in both structure and content as PDs respond to these influences. Learning from the collective experience of PDs and some standardization of the curricula may help current and future programs avoid common pitfalls in curricular development. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Mechanics of evolving thin film structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Jim

    In the Stranski-Krastanov system, the lattice mismatch between the film and the substrate causes the film to break into islands. During annealing, both the surface energy and the elastic energy drive the islands to coarsen. Motivated by several related studies, we suggest that stable islands should form when a stiff ceiling is placed at a small gap above the film. We show that the role of elasticity is reversed: with the ceiling, the total elastic energy stored in the system increases as the islands coarsen laterally. Consequently, the islands select an equilibrium size to minimize the combined elastic energy and surface energy. In lithographically-induced self-assembly, when a two-phase fluid confined between parallel substrates is subjected to an electric field, one phase can self-assemble into a triangular lattice of islands in another phase. We describe a theory of the stability of the island lattice. The islands select the equilibrium diameter to minimize the combined interface energy and electrostatic energy. Furthermore, we study compressed SiGe thin film islands fabricated on a glass layer, which itself lies on a silicon wafer. Upon annealing, the glass flows, and the islands relax. A small island relaxes by in-plane expansion. A large island, however, wrinkles at the center before the in-plane relaxation arrives. The wrinkles may cause significant tensile stress in the island, leading to fracture. We model the island by the von Karman plate theory and the glass layer by the Reynolds lubrication theory. Numerical simulations evolve the in-plane expansion and the wrinkles simultaneously. We determine the critical island size, below which in-plane expansion prevails over wrinkling. Finally, in devices that integrate dissimilar materials in small dimensions, crack extension in one material often accompanies inelastic deformation in another. We analyze a channel crack advancing in an elastic film under tension, while an underlayer creeps. We use a two

  3. Extreme delta brush evolving into status epilepticus in a patient with anti-NMDA encephalitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aline Herlopian, MD

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Extreme delta brush (EDB is an EEG pattern unique to anti-NMDA encephalitis. It is correlated with seizures and status epilepticus in patients who have a prolonged course of illness. The etiology of the underlying association between EDB and seizures is not understood. We present a patient with anti-NMDA encephalitis who developed status epilepticus evolving from the high frequency activity of the extreme delta brush. This case demonstrates that EDB is not only a marker for a greater propensity for seizures but also directly implicated in seizure generation.

  4. Q&A: What is human language, when did it evolve and why should we care?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pagel, Mark

    2017-07-24

    Human language is unique among all forms of animal communication. It is unlikely that any other species, including our close genetic cousins the Neanderthals, ever had language, and so-called sign 'language' in Great Apes is nothing like human language. Language evolution shares many features with biological evolution, and this has made it useful for tracing recent human history and for studying how culture evolves among groups of people with related languages. A case can be made that language has played a more important role in our species' recent (circa last 200,000 years) evolution than have our genes.

  5. Origins of fluorescence in evolved bacteriophytochromes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhattacharya, Shyamosree; Auldridge, Michele E; Lehtivuori, Heli; Ihalainen, Janne A; Forest, Katrina T

    2014-11-14

    Use of fluorescent proteins to study in vivo processes in mammals requires near-infrared (NIR) biomarkers that exploit the ability of light in this range to penetrate tissue. Bacteriophytochromes (BphPs) are photoreceptors that couple absorbance of NIR light to photoisomerization, protein conformational changes, and signal transduction. BphPs have been engineered to form NIR fluorophores, including IFP1.4, Wi-Phy, and the iRFP series, initially by replacement of Asp-207 by His. This position was suggestive because its main chain carbonyl is within hydrogen-bonding distance to pyrrole ring nitrogens of the biliverdin chromophore, thus potentially functioning as a crucial transient proton sink during photoconversion. To explain the origin of fluorescence in these phytofluors, we solved the crystal structures of IFP1.4 and a comparison non-fluorescent monomeric phytochrome DrCBDmon. Met-186 and Val-288 in IFP1.4 are responsible for the formation of a tightly packed hydrophobic hub around the biliverdin D ring. Met-186 is also largely responsible for the blue-shifted IFP1.4 excitation maximum relative to the parent BphP. The structure of IFP1.4 revealed decreased structural heterogeneity and a contraction of two surface regions as direct consequences of side chain substitutions. Unexpectedly, IFP1.4 with Asp-207 reinstalled (IFPrev) has a higher fluorescence quantum yield (∼9%) than most NIR phytofluors published to date. In agreement, fluorescence lifetime measurements confirm the exceptionally long excited state lifetimes, up to 815 ps, in IFP1.4 and IFPrev. Our research helps delineate the origin of fluorescence in engineered BphPs and will facilitate the wide-spread adoption of phytofluors as biomarkers. © 2014 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  6. Marketing the Uniqueness of Small Towns. Revised.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Douglas; Hogg, David H.

    The key to marketing a town is determining and promoting the town's "differential advantage" or uniqueness that would make people want to visit or live there. Exercises to help communities gain important insights into the town's competitive edge include a brainstorming session with knowledgeable community members, a visitor…

  7. On uniqueness in evolution quasivariational inequalities

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Brokate, M.; Krejčí, Pavel; Schnabel, H.

    2004-01-01

    Roč. 11, č. 1 (2004), s. 111-130 ISSN 0944-6532 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1019905 Keywords : evolution quasivariational inequality * uniqueness * sweeping process Subject RIV: BA - General Mathematics Impact factor: 0.425, year: 2004 http://www.heldermann-verlag.de/jca/jca11/jca0386.pdf

  8. Esperanto: A Unique Model for General Linguistics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dulichenko, Aleksandr D.

    1988-01-01

    Esperanto presents a unique model for linguistic research by allowing the study of language development from project to fully functioning language. Esperanto provides insight into the growth of polysemy and redundancy, as well as into language universals and the phenomenon of social control. (Author/CB)

  9. Weeping dragon, a unique ornamenal citrus

    Science.gov (United States)

    ‘Weeping Dragon’ is a new ornamental citrus cultivar developed by intercrossing of two unusual and unique citrus types, Poncirus trifoliata cultivated variety (cv.) Flying Dragon, and Citrus sinensis cv. ‘Cipo’. This new hybrid cultivar combines strongly contorted and weeping growth traits in a smal...

  10. The end of the unique myocardial band

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    MacIver, David H; Partridge, John B; Agger, Peter

    2018-01-01

    Two of the leading concepts of mural ventricular architecture are the unique myocardial band and the myocardial mesh model. We have described, in an accompanying article published in this journal, how the anatomical, histological and high-resolution computed tomographic studies strongly favour th...

  11. Using Quantum Confinement to Uniquely Identify Devices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, J.; Bagci, I. E.; Zawawi, M. A. M.; Sexton, J.; Hulbert, N.; Noori, Y. J.; Young, M. P.; Woodhead, C. S.; Missous, M.; Migliorato, M. A.; Roedig, U.; Young, R. J.

    2015-11-01

    Modern technology unintentionally provides resources that enable the trust of everyday interactions to be undermined. Some authentication schemes address this issue using devices that give a unique output in response to a challenge. These signatures are generated by hard-to-predict physical responses derived from structural characteristics, which lend themselves to two different architectures, known as unique objects (UNOs) and physically unclonable functions (PUFs). The classical design of UNOs and PUFs limits their size and, in some cases, their security. Here we show that quantum confinement lends itself to the provision of unique identities at the nanoscale, by using fluctuations in tunnelling measurements through quantum wells in resonant tunnelling diodes (RTDs). This provides an uncomplicated measurement of identity without conventional resource limitations whilst providing robust security. The confined energy levels are highly sensitive to the specific nanostructure within each RTD, resulting in a distinct tunnelling spectrum for every device, as they contain a unique and unpredictable structure that is presently impossible to clone. This new class of authentication device operates with minimal resources in simple electronic structures above room temperature.

  12. Unique Footprint in the scl1.3 Locus Affects Adhesion and Biofilm Formation of the Invasive M3-Type Group A Streptococcus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachert, Beth A; Choi, Soo J; LaSala, Paul R; Harper, Tiffany I; McNitt, Dudley H; Boehm, Dylan T; Caswell, Clayton C; Ciborowski, Pawel; Keene, Douglas R; Flores, Anthony R; Musser, James M; Squeglia, Flavia; Marasco, Daniela; Berisio, Rita; Lukomski, Slawomir

    2016-01-01

    The streptococcal collagen-like proteins 1 and 2 (Scl1 and Scl2) are major surface adhesins that are ubiquitous among group A Streptococcus (GAS). Invasive M3-type strains, however, have evolved two unique conserved features in the scl1 locus: (i) an IS1548 element insertion in the scl1 promoter region and (ii) a nonsense mutation within the scl1 coding sequence. The scl1 transcript is drastically reduced in M3-type GAS, contrasting with a high transcription level of scl1 allele in invasive M1-type GAS. This leads to a lack of Scl1 expression in M3 strains. In contrast, while scl2 transcription and Scl2 production are elevated in M3 strains, M1 GAS lack Scl2 surface expression. M3-type strains were shown to have reduced biofilm formation on inanimate surfaces coated with cellular fibronectin and laminin, and in human skin equivalents. Repair of the nonsense mutation and restoration of Scl1 expression on M3-GAS cells, restores biofilm formation on cellular fibronectin and laminin coatings. Inactivation of scl1 in biofilm-capable M28 and M41 strains results in larger skin lesions in a mouse model, indicating that lack of Scl1 adhesin promotes bacterial spread over localized infection. These studies suggest the uniquely evolved scl1 locus in the M3-type strains, which prevents surface expression of the major Scl1 adhesin, contributed to the emergence of the invasive M3-type strains. Furthermore these studies provide insight into the molecular mechanisms mediating colonization, biofilm formation, and pathogenesis of group A streptococci.

  13. Unique footprint in the scl1.3 locus affects adhesion and biofilm formation of the invasive M3-type group A Streptococcus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beth Alexandra Bachert

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The streptococcal collagen-like proteins 1 and 2 (Scl1 and Scl2 are major surface adhesins that are ubiquitous among group A Streptococcus (GAS. Invasive M3-type strains, however, have evolved two unique conserved features in the scl1 locus: (i an IS1548 element insertion in the scl1 promoter region and (ii a nonsense mutation within the scl1 coding sequence. The scl1 transcript is drastically reduced in M3-type GAS, contrasting with a high transcription level of scl1 allele in invasive M1-type GAS. This leads to a lack of Scl1 expression in M3 strains. In contrast, while scl2 transcription and Scl2 production are elevated in M3 strains, M1 GAS lack Scl2 surface expression. M3-type strains were shown to have reduced biofilm formation on inanimate surfaces coated with cellular fibronectin and laminin, and in human skin equivalents. Repair of the nonsense mutation and restoration of Scl1 expression on M3-GAS cells, restores biofilm formation on cellular fibronectin and laminin coatings. Inactivation of scl1 in biofilm-capable M28 and M41 strains results in larger skin lesions in a mouse model, indicating that lack of Scl1 adhesin promotes bacterial spread over localized infection. These studies suggest the uniquely evolved scl1 locus in the M3-type strains, which prevents surface expression of the major Scl1 adhesin, contributed to the emergence of the invasive M3-type strains. Furthermore these studies provide insight into the molecular mechanisms mediating colonization, biofilm formation, and pathogenesis of group A streptococci.

  14. The genotype-phenotype map of an evolving digital organism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel A Fortuna

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available To understand how evolving systems bring forth novel and useful phenotypes, it is essential to understand the relationship between genotypic and phenotypic change. Artificial evolving systems can help us understand whether the genotype-phenotype maps of natural evolving systems are highly unusual, and it may help create evolvable artificial systems. Here we characterize the genotype-phenotype map of digital organisms in Avida, a platform for digital evolution. We consider digital organisms from a vast space of 10141 genotypes (instruction sequences, which can form 512 different phenotypes. These phenotypes are distinguished by different Boolean logic functions they can compute, as well as by the complexity of these functions. We observe several properties with parallels in natural systems, such as connected genotype networks and asymmetric phenotypic transitions. The likely common cause is robustness to genotypic change. We describe an intriguing tension between phenotypic complexity and evolvability that may have implications for biological evolution. On the one hand, genotypic change is more likely to yield novel phenotypes in more complex organisms. On the other hand, the total number of novel phenotypes reachable through genotypic change is highest for organisms with simple phenotypes. Artificial evolving systems can help us study aspects of biological evolvability that are not accessible in vastly more complex natural systems. They can also help identify properties, such as robustness, that are required for both human-designed artificial systems and synthetic biological systems to be evolvable.

  15. The genotype-phenotype map of an evolving digital organism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fortuna, Miguel A; Zaman, Luis; Ofria, Charles; Wagner, Andreas

    2017-02-01

    To understand how evolving systems bring forth novel and useful phenotypes, it is essential to understand the relationship between genotypic and phenotypic change. Artificial evolving systems can help us understand whether the genotype-phenotype maps of natural evolving systems are highly unusual, and it may help create evolvable artificial systems. Here we characterize the genotype-phenotype map of digital organisms in Avida, a platform for digital evolution. We consider digital organisms from a vast space of 10141 genotypes (instruction sequences), which can form 512 different phenotypes. These phenotypes are distinguished by different Boolean logic functions they can compute, as well as by the complexity of these functions. We observe several properties with parallels in natural systems, such as connected genotype networks and asymmetric phenotypic transitions. The likely common cause is robustness to genotypic change. We describe an intriguing tension between phenotypic complexity and evolvability that may have implications for biological evolution. On the one hand, genotypic change is more likely to yield novel phenotypes in more complex organisms. On the other hand, the total number of novel phenotypes reachable through genotypic change is highest for organisms with simple phenotypes. Artificial evolving systems can help us study aspects of biological evolvability that are not accessible in vastly more complex natural systems. They can also help identify properties, such as robustness, that are required for both human-designed artificial systems and synthetic biological systems to be evolvable.

  16. An Evolving Asymmetric Game for Modeling Interdictor-Smuggler Problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-06-01

    ASYMMETRIC GAME FOR MODELING INTERDICTOR-SMUGGLER PROBLEMS by Richard J. Allain June 2016 Thesis Advisor: David L. Alderson Second Reader: W...DATES COVERED Master’s thesis 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE AN EVOLVING ASYMMETRIC GAME FOR MODELING INTERDICTOR- SMUGGLER PROBLEMS 5. FUNDING NUMBERS 6...NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY, CALIFORNIA THESIS Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited AN EVOLVING

  17. Adaptation of Escherichia coli to glucose promotes evolvability in lactose.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Kelly N; Castillo, Gerardo; Wünsche, Andrea; Cooper, Tim F

    2016-02-01

    The selective history of a population can influence its subsequent evolution, an effect known as historical contingency. We previously observed that five of six replicate populations that were evolved in a glucose-limited environment for 2000 generations, then switched to lactose for 1000 generations, had higher fitness increases in lactose than populations started directly from the ancestor. To test if selection in glucose systematically increased lactose evolvability, we started 12 replay populations--six from a population subsample and six from a single randomly selected clone--from each of the six glucose-evolved founder populations. These replay populations and 18 ancestral populations were evolved for 1000 generations in a lactose-limited environment. We found that replay populations were initially slightly less fit in lactose than the ancestor, but were more evolvable, in that they increased in fitness at a faster rate and to higher levels. This result indicates that evolution in the glucose environment resulted in genetic changes that increased the potential of genotypes to adapt to lactose. Genome sequencing identified four genes--iclR, nadR, spoT, and rbs--that were mutated in most glucose-evolved clones and are candidates for mediating increased evolvability. Our results demonstrate that short-term selective costs during selection in one environment can lead to changes in evolvability that confer longer term benefits. © 2016 The Author(s). Evolution © 2016 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  18. PCBA demand forecasting using an evolving Takagi-Sugeno system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Rooijen, M.; Almeida, R.J.; Kaymak, U.

    2016-01-01

    This paper investigates the use of using an evolving fuzzy system for printed circuit board (PCBA) demand forecasting. The algorithm is based on the evolving Takagi-Sugeno (eTS) fuzzy system, which has the ability to incorporate new patterns by changing its internal structure in an on-line fashion.

  19. Survival of the Friendliest: Homo sapiens Evolved via Selection for Prosociality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hare, Brian

    2017-01-03

    The challenge of studying human cognitive evolution is identifying unique features of our intelligence while explaining the processes by which they arose. Comparisons with nonhuman apes point to our early-emerging cooperative-communicative abilities as crucial to the evolution of all forms of human cultural cognition, including language. The human self-domestication hypothesis proposes that these early-emerging social skills evolved when natural selection favored increased in-group prosociality over aggression in late human evolution. As a by-product of this selection, humans are predicted to show traits of the domestication syndrome observed in other domestic animals. In reviewing comparative, developmental, neurobiological, and paleoanthropological research, compelling evidence emerges for the predicted relationship between unique human mentalizing abilities, tolerance, and the domestication syndrome in humans. This synthesis includes a review of the first a priori test of the self-domestication hypothesis as well as predictions for future tests.

  20. Homophyly/Kinship Model: Naturally Evolving Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Angsheng; Li, Jiankou; Pan, Yicheng; Yin, Xianchen; Yong, Xi

    2015-10-01

    It has been a challenge to understand the formation and roles of social groups or natural communities in the evolution of species, societies and real world networks. Here, we propose the hypothesis that homophyly/kinship is the intrinsic mechanism of natural communities, introduce the notion of the affinity exponent and propose the homophyly/kinship model of networks. We demonstrate that the networks of our model satisfy a number of topological, probabilistic and combinatorial properties and, in particular, that the robustness and stability of natural communities increase as the affinity exponent increases and that the reciprocity of the networks in our model decreases as the affinity exponent increases. We show that both homophyly/kinship and reciprocity are essential to the emergence of cooperation in evolutionary games and that the homophyly/kinship and reciprocity determined by the appropriate affinity exponent guarantee the emergence of cooperation in evolutionary games, verifying Darwin’s proposal that kinship and reciprocity are the means of individual fitness. We propose the new principle of structure entropy minimisation for detecting natural communities of networks and verify the functional module property and characteristic properties by a healthy tissue cell network, a citation network, some metabolic networks and a protein interaction network.

  1. Laplacian Estrada and normalized Laplacian Estrada indices of evolving graphs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yilun Shang

    Full Text Available Large-scale time-evolving networks have been generated by many natural and technological applications, posing challenges for computation and modeling. Thus, it is of theoretical and practical significance to probe mathematical tools tailored for evolving networks. In this paper, on top of the dynamic Estrada index, we study the dynamic Laplacian Estrada index and the dynamic normalized Laplacian Estrada index of evolving graphs. Using linear algebra techniques, we established general upper and lower bounds for these graph-spectrum-based invariants through a couple of intuitive graph-theoretic measures, including the number of vertices or edges. Synthetic random evolving small-world networks are employed to show the relevance of the proposed dynamic Estrada indices. It is found that neither the static snapshot graphs nor the aggregated graph can approximate the evolving graph itself, indicating the fundamental difference between the static and dynamic Estrada indices.

  2. Laplacian Estrada and normalized Laplacian Estrada indices of evolving graphs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Yilun

    2015-01-01

    Large-scale time-evolving networks have been generated by many natural and technological applications, posing challenges for computation and modeling. Thus, it is of theoretical and practical significance to probe mathematical tools tailored for evolving networks. In this paper, on top of the dynamic Estrada index, we study the dynamic Laplacian Estrada index and the dynamic normalized Laplacian Estrada index of evolving graphs. Using linear algebra techniques, we established general upper and lower bounds for these graph-spectrum-based invariants through a couple of intuitive graph-theoretic measures, including the number of vertices or edges. Synthetic random evolving small-world networks are employed to show the relevance of the proposed dynamic Estrada indices. It is found that neither the static snapshot graphs nor the aggregated graph can approximate the evolving graph itself, indicating the fundamental difference between the static and dynamic Estrada indices.

  3. [Uniqueness seeking behavior as a self-verification: an alternative approach to the study of uniqueness].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamaoka, S

    1995-06-01

    Uniqueness theory explains that extremely high perceived similarity between self and others evokes negative emotional reactions and causes uniqueness seeking behavior. However, the theory conceptualizes similarity so ambiguously that it appears to suffer from low predictive validity. The purpose of the current article is to propose an alternative explanation of uniqueness seeking behavior. It posits that perceived uniqueness deprivation is a threat to self-concepts, and therefore causes self-verification behavior. Two levels of self verification are conceived: one based on personal categorization and the other on social categorization. The present approach regards uniqueness seeking behavior as the personal-level self verification. To test these propositions, a 2 (very high or moderate similarity information) x 2 (with or without outgroup information) x 2 (high or low need for uniqueness) between-subject factorial-design experiment was conducted with 95 university students. Results supported the self-verification approach, and were discussed in terms of effects of uniqueness deprivation, levels of self-categorization, and individual differences in need for uniqueness.

  4. The companion dog as a unique translational model for aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazzatenta, Andrea; Carluccio, Augusto; Robbe, Domenico; Giulio, Camillo Di; Cellerino, Alessandro

    2017-10-01

    The dog is a unique species due to its wide variation among breeds in terms of size, morphology, behaviour and lifespan, coupled with a genetic structure that facilitates the dissection of the genetic architecture that controls these traits. Dogs and humans co-evolved and share recent evolutionary selection processes, such as adaptation to digest starch-rich diets. Many diseases of the dog have a human counterpart, and notably Alzheimer's disease, which is otherwise difficult to model in other organisms. Unlike laboratory animals, companion dogs share the human environment and lifestyle, are exposed to the same pollutants, and are faced with pathogens and infections. Dogs represented a very useful model to understand the relationship between size, insulin-like growth factor-1 genetic variation and lifespan, and have been used to test the effects of dietary restriction and immunotherapy for Alzheimer's disease. Very recently, rapamycin was tested in companion dogs outside the laboratory, and this approach where citizens are involved in research aimed at the benefit of dog welfare might become a game changer in geroscience. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Fingerprint: A Unique and Reliable Method for Identification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Palash Kumar Bose

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Fingerprints have been the gold standard for personal identification within the forensic community for more than one hundred years. It is still universal in spite of discovery of DNA fingerprint. The science of fingerprint identification has evolved over time from the early use of finger prints to mark business transactions in ancient Babylonia to their use today as core technology in biometric security devices and as scientific evidence in courts of law throughout the world. The science of fingerprints, dactylography or dermatoglyphics, had long been widely accepted, and well acclaimed and reputed as panacea for individualization, particularly in forensic investigations. Human fingerprints are detailed, unique, difficult to alter, and durable over the life of an individual, making them suitable as lifelong markers of human identity. Fingerprints can be readily used by police or other authorities to identify individuals who wish to conceal their identity, or to identify people who are incapacitated or deceased, as in the aftermath of a natural disaster

  6. Origin of the unique ventilatory apparatus of turtles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyson, Tyler R; Schachner, Emma R; Botha-Brink, Jennifer; Scheyer, Torsten M; Lambertz, Markus; Bever, G S; Rubidge, Bruce S; de Queiroz, Kevin

    2014-11-07

    The turtle body plan differs markedly from that of other vertebrates and serves as a model system for studying structural and developmental evolution. Incorporation of the ribs into the turtle shell negates the costal movements that effect lung ventilation in other air-breathing amniotes. Instead, turtles have a unique abdominal-muscle-based ventilatory apparatus whose evolutionary origins have remained mysterious. Here we show through broadly comparative anatomical and histological analyses that an early member of the turtle stem lineage has several turtle-specific ventilation characters: rigid ribcage, inferred loss of intercostal muscles and osteological correlates of the primary expiratory muscle. Our results suggest that the ventilation mechanism of turtles evolved through a division of labour between the ribs and muscles of the trunk in which the abdominal muscles took on the primary ventilatory function, whereas the broadened ribs became the primary means of stabilizing the trunk. These changes occurred approximately 50 million years before the evolution of the fully ossified shell.

  7. Revisiting Robustness and Evolvability: Evolution in Weighted Genotype Spaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Partha, Raghavendran; Raman, Karthik

    2014-01-01

    Robustness and evolvability are highly intertwined properties of biological systems. The relationship between these properties determines how biological systems are able to withstand mutations and show variation in response to them. Computational studies have explored the relationship between these two properties using neutral networks of RNA sequences (genotype) and their secondary structures (phenotype) as a model system. However, these studies have assumed every mutation to a sequence to be equally likely; the differences in the likelihood of the occurrence of various mutations, and the consequence of probabilistic nature of the mutations in such a system have previously been ignored. Associating probabilities to mutations essentially results in the weighting of genotype space. We here perform a comparative analysis of weighted and unweighted neutral networks of RNA sequences, and subsequently explore the relationship between robustness and evolvability. We show that assuming an equal likelihood for all mutations (as in an unweighted network), underestimates robustness and overestimates evolvability of a system. In spite of discarding this assumption, we observe that a negative correlation between sequence (genotype) robustness and sequence evolvability persists, and also that structure (phenotype) robustness promotes structure evolvability, as observed in earlier studies using unweighted networks. We also study the effects of base composition bias on robustness and evolvability. Particularly, we explore the association between robustness and evolvability in a sequence space that is AU-rich – sequences with an AU content of 80% or higher, compared to a normal (unbiased) sequence space. We find that evolvability of both sequences and structures in an AU-rich space is lesser compared to the normal space, and robustness higher. We also observe that AU-rich populations evolving on neutral networks of phenotypes, can access less phenotypic variation compared to

  8. Multiple floating metatarsals: a unique injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trikha Vivek

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available 【Abstract】Concomitant dislocation of the tar-sometatarsal and metatarsophalangeal joints of foot is an extremely rare injury. Such injuries presenting in a single or adjacent dual rays have been described in few cases previously. We describe such an injury in adjacent three metatarsals of a polytrauma patient. These injuries are likely to be missed in the initial assessment of a polytrauma patient. These patients are at risk of an overlooked diagnosis but the consequences of missing this type of injury may be Vivek Trikha*, Tarun Goyal, Amit K Agarwal quite severe. This case is presented in view of its unique-ness along with possible mechanism of injury, the sequence of reduction and follow-up. Knowledge of such injury and its proper management may be useful to the trauma surgeons. Key words: Metatarsal bones; Metatarsophalangeal joint; Wounds and injuries

  9. The evolving genetic risk for sporadic ALS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, Summer B; Downie, Jonathan M; Tsetsou, Spyridoula; Feusier, Julie E; Figueroa, Karla P; Bromberg, Mark B; Jorde, Lynn B; Pulst, Stefan M

    2017-07-18

    To estimate the genetic risk conferred by known amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)-associated genes to the pathogenesis of sporadic ALS (SALS) using variant allele frequencies combined with predicted variant pathogenicity. Whole exome sequencing and repeat expansion PCR of C9orf72 and ATXN2 were performed on 87 patients of European ancestry with SALS seen at the University of Utah. DNA variants that change the protein coding sequence of 31 ALS-associated genes were annotated to determine which were rare and deleterious as predicted by MetaSVM. The percentage of patients with SALS with a rare and deleterious variant or repeat expansion in an ALS-associated gene was calculated. An odds ratio analysis was performed comparing the burden of ALS-associated genes in patients with SALS vs 324 normal controls. Nineteen rare nonsynonymous variants in an ALS-associated gene, 2 of which were found in 2 different individuals, were identified in 21 patients with SALS. Further, 5 deleterious C9orf72 and 2 ATXN2 repeat expansions were identified. A total of 17.2% of patients with SALS had a rare and deleterious variant or repeat expansion in an ALS-associated gene. The genetic burden of ALS-associated genes in patients with SALS as predicted by MetaSVM was significantly higher than in normal controls. Previous analyses have identified SALS-predisposing variants only in terms of their rarity in normal control populations. By incorporating variant pathogenicity as well as variant frequency, we demonstrated that the genetic risk contributed by these genes for SALS is substantially lower than previous estimates. © 2017 American Academy of Neurology.

  10. Foundation Skills for Scientists: An Evolving Program

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elaine Khoo

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available We have undertaken an integrated and collaborative approach to developing foundational skills of students in a first year, Introductory Biology course. The course is a large lecture and laboratory course with enrollments ranging from 800-1000 per year. Teaching and Learning experts were brought into the course as weekly ‘Foundation Skills for Scientists’ sessions were created. The initial challenges were to have effective knowledge exchange between collaborators and create an integrated course syllabus. Once effective sessions were created, the next challenge was to improve student valuation of them. High value was only achieved when the skill sessions were tightly linked to course assignments and activities and was delivered ‘just in time’. Even then, the challenge has been to motivate students to realize that the sessions are directly relevant to them. Overall, student performance has improved since the program was initiated as measured by rate of retention in the course, overall course marks and quality of writing.Nous avons utilisé une approche intégrée et collaborative pour approfondir les compétences de base des étudiants de première année qui suivent un cours d’introduction à la biologie. Il s’agit d’un cours magistral et en laboratoire, auquel s’inscrivent entre 800 et 1000 étudiants par an. Ce cours a bénéficié de l’apport d’experts en enseignement et en apprentissage afin d’appuyer le développement de séances hebdomadaires portant sur les compétences de base en sciences. Les difficultés initiales étaient de susciter un échange de connaissances efficace entre les collaborateurs et de créer un plan de cours intégré. Une fois les séances organisées, la difficulté suivante a été de faire en sorte que les étudiants les apprécient davantage. Ces derniers les ont jugées très utiles uniquement lorsqu’elles étaient étroitement liées aux tâches et aux

  11. The neXtProt peptide uniqueness checker: a tool for the proteomics community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaeffer, Mathieu; Gateau, Alain; Teixeira, Daniel; Michel, Pierre-André; Zahn-Zabal, Monique; Lane, Lydie

    2017-11-01

    The neXtProt peptide uniqueness checker allows scientists to define which peptides can be used to validate the existence of human proteins, i.e. map uniquely versus multiply to human protein sequences taking into account isobaric substitutions, alternative splicing and single amino acid variants. The pepx program is available at https://github.com/calipho-sib/pepx and can be launched from the command line or through a cgi web interface. Indexing requires a sequence file in FASTA format. The peptide uniqueness checker tool is freely available on the web at https://www.nextprot.org/tools/peptide-uniqueness-checker and from the neXtProt API at https://api.nextprot.org/. lydie.lane@sib.swiss. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  12. Modularity, comparative cognition and human uniqueness

    OpenAIRE

    Shettleworth, Sara J.

    2012-01-01

    Darwin's claim ‘that the difference in mind between man and the higher animals … is certainly one of degree and not of kind’ is at the core of the comparative study of cognition. Recent research provides unprecedented support for Darwin's claim as well as new reasons to question it, stimulating new theories of human cognitive uniqueness. This article compares and evaluates approaches to such theories. Some prominent theories propose sweeping domain-general characterizations of the difference ...

  13. A unique theory of all forces

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Di Vecchia, Paolo

    1997-01-01

    In discussing the construction of a consistent theory of quantum gravity unified with the gauge interactions we are naturally led to a string theory. We review its properties and the five consistent supersymmetric string theories in ten dimensions. We finally discuss the evidence that these theories are actually special limits of a unique 11-dimensional theory, called M-theory, and a recent conjecture for its explicit formulation as a supersymmetric Matrix theory

  14. Atherosclerotic plaque rupture and thrombosis. Evolving concepts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuster, V; Stein, B; Ambrose, J A; Badimon, L; Badimon, J J; Chesebro, J H

    1990-09-01

    the coagulation cascade system and may lead to thrombotic reocclusion. Measurements aimed at reversing the process of atherosclerosis via cholesterol reduction and enhanced high density lipoprotein activity are encouraging. Active research is being focused on the development of new antithrombotic tools, such as inhibitors of thrombin, thromboxane, and serotonin receptor antagonists, and monoclonal antibodies aimed at blocking platelet membrane receptors or adhesive proteins. These compounds may prove useful when immediate and potent inhibition of the hemostatic system is desired. Intensive research is still needed in the areas of pathogenesis and therapeutic intervention in atherosclerosis.

  15. Do motifs reflect evolved function?--No convergent evolution of genetic regulatory network subgraph topologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knabe, Johannes F; Nehaniv, Chrystopher L; Schilstra, Maria J

    2008-01-01

    Methods that analyse the topological structure of networks have recently become quite popular. Whether motifs (subgraph patterns that occur more often than in randomized networks) have specific functions as elementary computational circuits has been cause for debate. As the question is difficult to resolve with currently available biological data, we approach the issue using networks that abstractly model natural genetic regulatory networks (GRNs) which are evolved to show dynamical behaviors. Specifically one group of networks was evolved to be capable of exhibiting two different behaviors ("differentiation") in contrast to a group with a single target behavior. In both groups we find motif distribution differences within the groups to be larger than differences between them, indicating that evolutionary niches (target functions) do not necessarily mold network structure uniquely. These results show that variability operators can have a stronger influence on network topologies than selection pressures, especially when many topologies can create similar dynamics. Moreover, analysis of motif functional relevance by lesioning did not suggest that motifs were of greater importance to the functioning of the network than arbitrary subgraph patterns. Only when drastically restricting network size, so that one motif corresponds to a whole functionally evolved network, was preference for particular connection patterns found. This suggests that in non-restricted, bigger networks, entanglement with the rest of the network hinders topological subgraph analysis.

  16. Multi-disciplinary management of athletes with post-concussion syndrome: an evolving pathophysiological approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael John Ellis

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Historically, patients with sports-related concussion (SRC have been managed in a uniform fashion consisting mostly of prescribed physical and cognitive rest with the expectation that all symptoms will spontaneously resolve with time. Although this approach will result in successful return to school and sports activities in the majority of athletes, an important proportion will develop persistent concussion symptoms characteristic of post-concussion syndrome (PCS. Recent advances in exercise science, neuroimaging, and clinical research suggest that the clinical manifestations of PCS are mediated by unique pathophysiological processes that can be identified by features of the clinical history and physical examination as well as the use of graded aerobic treadmill testing. Athletes who develop PCS represent a unique population whose care must be individualized and must incorporate a rehabilitative strategy that promotes enhanced recovery of concussion-related symptoms while preventing physical deconditioning. In this review we present our evolving evidence-based approach to evaluation and management of athletes with PCS that aims to identify the pathophysiological mechanisms mediating persistent concussion symptoms and guides the initiation of individually-tailored rehabilitation programs that target these processes. In addition, we outline the important qualified roles that multi-disciplinary healthcare professionals can play in the management of this patient population, and discuss where future research efforts must be focused to further validate this evolving pathophysiological approach.

  17. Multi-Disciplinary Management of Athletes with Post-Concussion Syndrome: An Evolving Pathophysiological Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, Michael J; Leddy, John; Willer, Barry

    2016-01-01

    Historically, patients with sports-related concussion (SRC) have been managed in a uniform fashion consisting mostly of prescribed physical and cognitive rest with the expectation that all symptoms will spontaneously resolve with time. Although this approach will result in successful return to school and sports activities in the majority of athletes, an important proportion will develop persistent concussion symptoms characteristic of post-concussion syndrome (PCS). Recent advances in exercise science, neuroimaging, and clinical research suggest that the clinical manifestations of PCS are mediated by unique pathophysiological processes that can be identified by features of the clinical history and physical examination as well as the use of graded aerobic treadmill testing. Athletes who develop PCS represent a unique population whose care must be individualized and must incorporate a rehabilitative strategy that promotes enhanced recovery of concussion-related symptoms while preventing physical deconditioning. In this review, we present our evolving evidence-based approach to evaluation and management of athletes with PCS that aims to identify the pathophysiological mechanisms mediating persistent concussion symptoms and guides the initiation of individually tailored rehabilitation programs that target these processes. In addition, we outline the important qualified roles that multi-disciplinary healthcare professionals can play in the management of this patient population, and discuss where future research efforts must be focused to further evaluate this evolving pathophysiological approach.

  18. Conservation and divergence of C-terminal domain structure in the retinoblastoma protein family

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liban, Tyler J.; Medina, Edgar M.; Tripathi, Sarvind; Sengupta, Satyaki; Henry, R. William; Buchler, Nicolas E.; Rubin, Seth M. (UCSC); (Duke); (MSU)

    2017-04-24

    The retinoblastoma protein (Rb) and the homologous pocket proteins p107 and p130 negatively regulate cell proliferation by binding and inhibiting members of the E2F transcription factor family. The structural features that distinguish Rb from other pocket proteins have been unclear but are critical for understanding their functional diversity and determining why Rb has unique tumor suppressor activities. We describe here important differences in how the Rb and p107 C-terminal domains (CTDs) associate with the coiled-coil and marked-box domains (CMs) of E2Fs. We find that although CTD–CM binding is conserved across protein families, Rb and p107 CTDs show clear preferences for different E2Fs. A crystal structure of the p107 CTD bound to E2F5 and its dimer partner DP1 reveals the molecular basis for pocket protein–E2F binding specificity and how cyclin-dependent kinases differentially regulate pocket proteins through CTD phosphorylation. Our structural and biochemical data together with phylogenetic analyses of Rb and E2F proteins support the conclusion that Rb evolved specific structural motifs that confer its unique capacity to bind with high affinity those E2Fs that are the most potent activators of the cell cycle.

  19. Uniqueness and non-uniqueness of semigroups generated by singular diffusion operators

    CERN Document Server

    Eberle, Andreas

    1999-01-01

    This book addresses both probabilists working on diffusion processes and analysts interested in linear parabolic partial differential equations with singular coefficients. The central question discussed is whether a given diffusion operator, i.e., a second order linear differential operator without zeroth order term, which is a priori defined on test functions over some (finite or infinite dimensional) state space only, uniquely determines a strongly continuous semigroup on a corresponding weighted Lp space. Particular emphasis is placed on phenomena causing non-uniqueness, as well as on the relation between different notions of uniqueness appearing in analytic and probabilistic contexts.

  20. Fluorescent Photo-conversion: A second chance to label unique cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mellott, Adam J; Shinogle, Heather E; Moore, David S; Detamore, Michael S

    2015-03-01

    Not all cells behave uniformly after treatment in tissue engineering studies. In fact, some treated cells display no signs of treatment or show unique characteristics not consistent with other treated cells. What if the "unique" cells could be isolated from a treated population, and further studied? Photo-convertible reporter proteins, such as Dendra2 , allow for the ability to selectively identify unique cells with a secondary label within a primary labeled treated population. In the current study, select cells were identified and labeled through photo-conversion of Dendra2 -transfected human Wharton's Jelly cells (hWJCs) for the first time. Robust photo-conversion of green-to-red fluorescence was achieved consistently in arbitrarily selected cells, allowing for precise cell identification of select hWJCs. The current study demonstrates a method that offers investigators the opportunity to selectively label and identify unique cells within a treated population for further study or isolation from the treatment population. Photo-convertible reporter proteins, such as Dendra2 , offer the ability over non-photo-convertible reporter proteins, such as green fluorescent protein, to analyze unique individual cells within a treated population, which allows investigators to gain more meaningful information on how a treatment affects all cells within a target population.

  1. The diverse functions of the hepatitis B core/capsid protein (HBc) in the viral life cycle: Implications for the development of HBc-targeting antivirals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diab, Ahmed; Foca, Adrien; Zoulim, Fabien; Durantel, David; Andrisani, Ourania

    2018-01-01

    Virally encoded proteins have evolved to perform multiple functions, and the core protein (HBc) of the hepatitis B virus (HBV) is a perfect example. While HBc is the structural component of the viral nucleocapsid, additional novel functions for the nucleus-localized HBc have recently been described. These results extend for HBc, beyond its structural role, a regulatory function in the viral life cycle and potentially a role in pathogenesis. In this article, we review the diverse roles of HBc in HBV replication and pathogenesis, emphasizing how the unique structure of this protein is key to its various functions. We focus in particular on recent advances in understanding the significance of HBc phosphorylations, its interaction with host proteins and the role of HBc in regulating the transcription of host genes. We also briefly allude to the emerging niche for new direct-acting antivirals targeting HBc, known as Core (protein) Allosteric Modulators (CAMs). Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Unique properties of Drosophila spermatocyte primary cilia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Giovanna Riparbelli

    2013-09-01

    The primary cilium is an essential organelle required for animal development and adult homeostasis that is found on most animal cells. The primary cilium contains a microtubule-based axoneme cytoskeleton that typically grows from the mother centriole in G0/G1 phase of the cell cycle as a membrane-bound compartment that protrudes from the cell surface. A unique system of bidirectional transport, intraflagellar transport (IFT, maintains the structure and function of cilia. While the axoneme is dynamic, growing and shrinking at its tip, at the same time it is very stable to the effects of microtubule-targeting drugs. The primary cilia found on Drosophila spermatocytes diverge from the general rules of primary cilium biology in several respects. Among these unique attributes, spermatocyte cilia assemble from all four centrioles in an IFT-independent manner in G2 phase, and persist continuously through two cell divisions. Here, we show that Drosophila spermatocyte primary cilia are extremely sensitive to microtubule-targeting drugs, unlike their mammalian counterparts. Spermatocyte cilia and their axonemes fail to assemble or be maintained upon nocodazole treatment, while centriole replication appears unperturbed. On the other hand, paclitaxel (Taxol, a microtubule-stabilizing drug, disrupted transition zone assembly and anchoring to the plasma membrane while causing spermatocyte primary cilia to grow extensively long during the assembly/elongation phase, but did not overtly affect the centrioles. However, once assembled to their mature length, spermatocyte cilia appeared unaffected by Taxol. The effects of these drugs on axoneme dynamics further demonstrate that spermatocyte primary cilia are endowed with unique assembly properties.

  3. Analysis of expression in the Anopheles gambiae developing testes reveals rapidly evolving lineage-specific genes in mosquitoes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krzywinski Jaroslaw

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Male mosquitoes do not feed on blood and are not involved in delivery of pathogens to humans. Consequently, they are seldom the subjects of research, which results in a very poor understanding of their biology. To gain insights into male developmental processes we sought to identify genes transcribed exclusively in the reproductive tissues of male Anopheles gambiae pupae. Results Using a cDNA subtraction strategy, five male-specifically or highly male-biased expressed genes were isolated, four of which remain unannotated in the An. gambiae genome. Spatial and temporal expression patterns suggest that each of these genes is involved in the mid-late stages of spermatogenesis. Their sequences are rapidly evolving; however, two genes possess clear homologs in a wide range of taxa and one of these probably acts in a sperm motility control mechanism conserved in many organisms, including humans. The other three genes have no match to sequences from non-mosquito taxa, thus can be regarded as orphans. RNA in situ hybridization demonstrated that one of the orphans is transcribed in spermatids, which suggests its involvement in sperm maturation. Two other orphans have unknown functions. Expression analysis of orthologs of all five genes indicated that male-biased transcription was not conserved in the majority of cases in Aedes and Culex. Conclusion Discovery of testis-expressed orphan genes in mosquitoes opens new prospects for the development of innovative control methods. The orphan encoded proteins may represent unique targets of selective anti-mosquito sterilizing agents that will not affect non-target organisms.

  4. Analysis of expression in the Anopheles gambiae developing testes reveals rapidly evolving lineage-specific genes in mosquitoes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krzywinska, Elzbieta; Krzywinski, Jaroslaw

    2009-07-06

    Male mosquitoes do not feed on blood and are not involved in delivery of pathogens to humans. Consequently, they are seldom the subjects of research, which results in a very poor understanding of their biology. To gain insights into male developmental processes we sought to identify genes transcribed exclusively in the reproductive tissues of male Anopheles gambiae pupae. Using a cDNA subtraction strategy, five male-specifically or highly male-biased expressed genes were isolated, four of which remain unannotated in the An. gambiae genome. Spatial and temporal expression patterns suggest that each of these genes is involved in the mid-late stages of spermatogenesis. Their sequences are rapidly evolving; however, two genes possess clear homologs in a wide range of taxa and one of these probably acts in a sperm motility control mechanism conserved in many organisms, including humans. The other three genes have no match to sequences from non-mosquito taxa, thus can be regarded as orphans. RNA in situ hybridization demonstrated that one of the orphans is transcribed in spermatids, which suggests its involvement in sperm maturation. Two other orphans have unknown functions. Expression analysis of orthologs of all five genes indicated that male-biased transcription was not conserved in the majority of cases in Aedes and Culex. Discovery of testis-expressed orphan genes in mosquitoes opens new prospects for the development of innovative control methods. The orphan encoded proteins may represent unique targets of selective anti-mosquito sterilizing agents that will not affect non-target organisms.

  5. Unique supply function equilibrium with capacity constraints

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Holmberg, Paer

    2008-01-01

    Consider a market where producers submit supply functions to a procurement auction with uncertain demand, e.g. an electricity auction. In the Supply Function Equilibrium (SFE), every firm commits to the supply function that maximises expected profit in the one-shot game given the supply functions of competitors. A basic weakness of the SFE is the presence of multiple equilibria. This paper shows that with (i) symmetric producers, (ii) perfectly inelastic demand, (iii) a price cap, and (iv) capacity constraints that bind with a positive probability, there exists a unique, symmetric SFE. (author)

  6. Stationary Black Holes: Uniqueness and Beyond

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heusler Markus

    1998-01-01

    Full Text Available The spectrum of known black hole solutions to the stationary Einstein equations has increased in an unexpected way during the last decade. In particular, it has turned out that not all black hole equilibrium configurations are characterized by their mass, angular momentum and global charges. Moreover, the high degree of symmetry displayed by vacuum and electro-vacuum black hole space-times ceases to exist in self-gravitating non-linear field theories. This text aims to review some of the recent developments and to discuss them in the light of the uniqueness theorem for the Einstein-Maxwell system.

  7. Stationary Black Holes: Uniqueness and Beyond

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Piotr T. Chruściel

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The spectrum of known black-hole solutions to the stationary Einstein equations has been steadily increasing, sometimes in unexpected ways. In particular, it has turned out that not all black-hole-equilibrium configurations are characterized by their mass, angular momentum and global charges. Moreover, the high degree of symmetry displayed by vacuum and electro vacuum black-hole spacetimes ceases to exist in self-gravitating non-linear field theories. This text aims to review some developments in the subject and to discuss them in light of the uniqueness theorem for the Einstein-Maxwell system.

  8. On uniqueness in diffuse optical tomography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harrach, Bastian

    2009-01-01

    A prominent result of Arridge and Lionheart (1998 Opt. Lett. 23 882–4) demonstrates that it is in general not possible to simultaneously recover both the diffusion (aka scattering) and the absorption coefficient in steady-state (dc) diffusion-based optical tomography. In this work we show that it suffices to restrict ourselves to piecewise constant diffusion and piecewise analytic absorption coefficients to regain uniqueness. Under this condition both parameters can simultaneously be determined from complete measurement data on an arbitrarily small part of the boundary

  9. Páramo is the world’s fastest evolving and coolest biodiversity hotspot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santiago eMadriñán

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the processes that cause speciation is a key aim of evolutionary biology. Lineages or biomes that exhibit recent and rapid diversification are ideal model systems for determining these processes. Species rich biomes reported to be of relatively recent origin, i.e., since the beginning of the Miocene, include Mediterranean ecosystems such as the California Floristic Province, oceanic islands such as the Hawaiian archipelago and the Neotropical high elevation ecosystem of the Páramos. Páramos constitute grasslands above the forest tree-line (at elevations of c. 2800–4700 m with high species endemism. Organisms that occupy this ecosystem are a likely product of unique adaptations to an extreme environment that evolved during the last three to five million years when the Andes reached an altitude that was capable of sustaining this type of vegetation. We compared net diversification rates of lineages in fast evolving biomes using 73 dated molecular phylogenies. Based on our sample, we demonstrate that average net diversification rates of Páramo plant lineages are faster than those of other reportedly fast evolving hotspots and that the faster evolving lineages are more likely to be found in Páramos than the other hotspots. Páramos therefore represent the ideal model system for studying diversification processes. Most of the speciation events that we observed in the Páramos (144 out of 177 occurred during the Pleistocene possibly due to the effects of species range contraction and expansion that may have resulted from the well-documented climatic changes during that period. Understanding these effects will assist with efforts to determine how future climatic changes will impact plant populations.

  10. Project Seahorse evolves into major marine protector | IDRC ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    2012-10-29

    Oct 29, 2012 ... Project Seahorse evolves into major marine protector ... local people, have greatly improved the prospects of survival for threatened species. ... “We tackle issues on any political level or geographical scale, according to what ...

  11. Incremental Frequent Subgraph Mining on Large Evolving Graphs

    KAUST Repository

    Abdelhamid, Ehab; Canim, Mustafa; Sadoghi, Mohammad; Bhatta, Bishwaranjan; Chang, Yuan-Chi; Kalnis, Panos

    2017-01-01

    , such as social networks, utilize large evolving graphs. Mining these graphs using existing techniques is infeasible, due to the high computational cost. In this paper, we propose IncGM+, a fast incremental approach for continuous frequent subgraph mining problem

  12. Genetic Algorithms Evolve Optimized Transforms for Signal Processing Applications

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Moore, Frank; Babb, Brendan; Becke, Steven; Koyuk, Heather; Lamson, Earl, III; Wedge, Christopher

    2005-01-01

    .... The primary goal of the research described in this final report was to establish a methodology for using genetic algorithms to evolve coefficient sets describing inverse transforms and matched...

  13. Biofabrication : reappraising the definition of an evolving field

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groll, Jürgen; Boland, Thomas; Blunk, Torsten; Burdick, Jason A; Cho, Dong-Woo; Dalton, Paul D; Derby, Brian; Forgacs, Gabor; Li, Qing; Mironov, Vladimir A; Moroni, Lorenzo; Nakamura, Makoto; Shu, Wenmiao; Takeuchi, Shoji; Vozzi, Giovanni; Woodfield, Tim B F; Xu, Tao; Yoo, James J; Malda, Jos|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/412461099

    2016-01-01

    Biofabrication is an evolving research field that has recently received significant attention. In particular, the adoption of Biofabrication concepts within the field of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine has grown tremendously, and has been accompanied by a growing inconsistency in

  14. Biofabrication : Reappraising the definition of an evolving field

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groll, Jürgen; Boland, Thomas; Blunk, Torsten; Burdick, Jason A.; Cho, Dong Woo; Dalton, Paul D.; Derby, Brian; Forgacs, Gabor; Li, Qing; Mironov, Vladimir A.; Moroni, Lorenzo; Nakamura, Makoto; Shu, Wenmiao; Takeuchi, Shoji; Vozzi, Giovanni; Woodfield, Tim B.F.; Xu, Tao; Yoo, James J.; Malda, Jos

    2016-01-01

    Biofabrication is an evolving research field that has recently received significant attention. In particular, the adoption of Biofabrication concepts within the field of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine has grown tremendously, and has been accompanied by a growing inconsistency in

  15. Orthogonally Evolved AI to Improve Difficulty Adjustment in Video Games

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hintze, Arend; Olson, Randal; Lehman, Joel Anthony

    2016-01-01

    Computer games are most engaging when their difficulty is well matched to the player's ability, thereby providing an experience in which the player is neither overwhelmed nor bored. In games where the player interacts with computer-controlled opponents, the difficulty of the game can be adjusted...... not only by changing the distribution of opponents or game resources, but also through modifying the skill of the opponents. Applying evolutionary algorithms to evolve the artificial intelligence that controls opponent agents is one established method for adjusting opponent difficulty. Less-evolved agents...... (i.e. agents subject to fewer generations of evolution) make for easier opponents, while highly-evolved agents are more challenging to overcome. In this publication we test a new approach for difficulty adjustment in games: orthogonally evolved AI, where the player receives support from collaborating...

  16. Identification of putative drug targets in Vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (VRSA) using computer aided protein data analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasan, Md Anayet; Khan, Md Arif; Sharmin, Tahmina; Hasan Mazumder, Md Habibul; Chowdhury, Afrin Sultana

    2016-01-01

    Vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (VRSA) is a Gram-positive, facultative aerobic bacterium which is evolved from the extensive exposure of Vancomycin to Methicillin resistant S. aureus (MRSA) that had become the most common cause of hospital and community-acquired infections. Due to the emergence of different antibiotic resistance strains, there is an exigency to develop novel drug targets to address the provocation of multidrug-resistant bacteria. In this study, in-silico genome subtraction methodology was used to design potential and pathogen specific drug targets against VRSA. Our study divulged 1987 proteins from the proteome of 34,549 proteins, which have no homologues in human genome after sequential analysis through CD-HIT and BLASTp. The high stringency analysis of the remaining proteins against database of essential genes (DEG) resulted in 169 proteins which are essential for S. aureus. Metabolic pathway analysis of human host and pathogen by KAAS at the KEGG server sorted out 19 proteins involved in unique metabolic pathways. 26 human non-homologous membrane-bound essential proteins including 4 which were also involved in unique metabolic pathway were deduced through PSORTb, CELLO v.2.5, ngLOC. Functional classification of uncharacterized proteins through SVMprot derived 7 human non-homologous membrane-bound hypothetical essential proteins. Study of potential drug target against Drug Bank revealed pbpA-penicillin-binding protein 1 and hypothetical protein MQW_01796 as the best drug target candidate. 2D structure was predicted by PRED-TMBB, 3D structure and functional analysis was also performed. Protein-protein interaction network of potential drug target proteins was analyzed by using STRING. The identified drug targets are expected to have great potential for designing novel drugs against VRSA infections and further screening of the compounds against these new targets may result in the discovery of novel therapeutic compounds that can be

  17. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles unique cost estimating requirements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malone, P.; Apgar, H.; Stukes, S.; Sterk, S.

    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), also referred to as drones, are aerial platforms that fly without a human pilot onboard. UAVs are controlled autonomously by a computer in the vehicle or under the remote control of a pilot stationed at a fixed ground location. There are a wide variety of drone shapes, sizes, configurations, complexities, and characteristics. Use of these devices by the Department of Defense (DoD), NASA, civil and commercial organizations continues to grow. UAVs are commonly used for intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance (ISR). They are also use for combat operations, and civil applications, such as firefighting, non-military security work, surveillance of infrastructure (e.g. pipelines, power lines and country borders). UAVs are often preferred for missions that require sustained persistence (over 4 hours in duration), or are “ too dangerous, dull or dirty” for manned aircraft. Moreover, they can offer significant acquisition and operations cost savings over traditional manned aircraft. Because of these unique characteristics and missions, UAV estimates require some unique estimating methods. This paper describes a framework for estimating UAV systems total ownership cost including hardware components, software design, and operations. The challenge of collecting data, testing the sensitivities of cost drivers, and creating cost estimating relationships (CERs) for each key work breakdown structure (WBS) element is discussed. The autonomous operation of UAVs is especially challenging from a software perspective.

  18. Young children's preference for unique owned objects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gelman, Susan A; Davidson, Natalie S

    2016-10-01

    An important aspect of human thought is the value we place on unique individuals. Adults place higher value on authentic works of art than exact replicas, and young children at times value their original possessions over exact duplicates. What is the scope of this preference in early childhood, and when do children understand its subjective nature? On a series of trials, we asked three-year-olds (N=36) to choose between two toys for either themselves or the researcher: an old (visibly used) toy vs. a new (more attractive) toy matched in type and appearance (e.g., old vs. brand-new blanket). Focal pairs contrasted the child's own toy with a matched new object; Control pairs contrasted toys the child had never seen before. Children preferred the old toys for Focal pairs only, and treated their own preferences as not shared by the researcher. By 3years of age, young children place special value on unique individuals, and understand the subjective nature of that value. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Event segmentation ability uniquely predicts event memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargent, Jesse Q; Zacks, Jeffrey M; Hambrick, David Z; Zacks, Rose T; Kurby, Christopher A; Bailey, Heather R; Eisenberg, Michelle L; Beck, Taylor M

    2013-11-01

    Memory for everyday events plays a central role in tasks of daily living, autobiographical memory, and planning. Event memory depends in part on segmenting ongoing activity into meaningful units. This study examined the relationship between event segmentation and memory in a lifespan sample to answer the following question: Is the ability to segment activity into meaningful events a unique predictor of subsequent memory, or is the relationship between event perception and memory accounted for by general cognitive abilities? Two hundred and eight adults ranging from 20 to 79years old segmented movies of everyday events and attempted to remember the events afterwards. They also completed psychometric ability tests and tests measuring script knowledge for everyday events. Event segmentation and script knowledge both explained unique variance in event memory above and beyond the psychometric measures, and did so as strongly in older as in younger adults. These results suggest that event segmentation is a basic cognitive mechanism, important for memory across the lifespan. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. (N+1)-dimensional Lorentzian evolving wormholes supported by polytropic matter

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cataldo, Mauricio [Universidad del Bio-Bio, Departamento de Fisica, Facultad de Ciencias, Concepcion (Chile); Arostica, Fernanda; Bahamonde, Sebastian [Universidad de Concepcion, Departamento de Fisica, Concepcion (Chile)

    2013-08-15

    In this paper we study (N+1)-dimensional evolving wormholes supported by energy satisfying a polytropic equation of state. The considered evolving wormhole models are described by a constant redshift function and generalizes the standard flat Friedmann-Robertson-Walker spacetime. The polytropic equation of state allows us to consider in (3+1)-dimensions generalizations of the phantom energy and the generalized Chaplygin gas sources. (orig.)

  1. A new evolutionary system for evolving artificial neural networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, X; Liu, Y

    1997-01-01

    This paper presents a new evolutionary system, i.e., EPNet, for evolving artificial neural networks (ANNs). The evolutionary algorithm used in EPNet is based on Fogel's evolutionary programming (EP). Unlike most previous studies on evolving ANN's, this paper puts its emphasis on evolving ANN's behaviors. Five mutation operators proposed in EPNet reflect such an emphasis on evolving behaviors. Close behavioral links between parents and their offspring are maintained by various mutations, such as partial training and node splitting. EPNet evolves ANN's architectures and connection weights (including biases) simultaneously in order to reduce the noise in fitness evaluation. The parsimony of evolved ANN's is encouraged by preferring node/connection deletion to addition. EPNet has been tested on a number of benchmark problems in machine learning and ANNs, such as the parity problem, the medical diagnosis problems, the Australian credit card assessment problem, and the Mackey-Glass time series prediction problem. The experimental results show that EPNet can produce very compact ANNs with good generalization ability in comparison with other algorithms.

  2. Conservation of a Unique Mechanism of Immune Evasion across the Lyssavirus Genus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiltzer, L.; Larrous, F.; Oksayan, S.; Ito, N.; Marsh, G. A.; Wang, L. F.; Blondel, D.; Bourhy, H.; Jans, D. A.

    2012-01-01

    The evasion of host innate immunity by Rabies virus, the prototype of the genus Lyssavirus, depends on a unique mechanism of selective targeting of interferon-activated STAT proteins by the viral phosphoprotein (P-protein). However, the immune evasion strategies of other lyssaviruses, including several lethal human pathogens, are unresolved. Here, we show that this mechanism is conserved between the most distantly related members of the genus, providing important insights into the pathogenesis and potential therapeutic targeting of lyssaviruses. PMID:22740405

  3. Conservation of a unique mechanism of immune evasion across the Lyssavirus genus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiltzer, L; Larrous, F; Oksayan, S; Ito, N; Marsh, G A; Wang, L F; Blondel, D; Bourhy, H; Jans, D A; Moseley, G W

    2012-09-01

    The evasion of host innate immunity by Rabies virus, the prototype of the genus Lyssavirus, depends on a unique mechanism of selective targeting of interferon-activated STAT proteins by the viral phosphoprotein (P-protein). However, the immune evasion strategies of other lyssaviruses, including several lethal human pathogens, are unresolved. Here, we show that this mechanism is conserved between the most distantly related members of the genus, providing important insights into the pathogenesis and potential therapeutic targeting of lyssaviruses.

  4. Detecting beer intake by unique metabolite patterns

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gürdeniz, Gözde; Jensen, Morten Georg; Meier, Sebastian

    2016-01-01

    Evaluation of health related effects of beer intake is hampered by the lack of accurate tools for assessing intakes (biomarkers). Therefore, we identified plasma and urine metabolites associated with recent beer intake by untargeted metabolomics and established a characteristic metabolite pattern...... representing raw materials and beer production as a qualitative biomarker of beer intake. In a randomized, crossover, single-blinded meal study (MSt1) 18 participants were given one at a time four different test beverages: strong, regular and non-alcoholic beers and a soft drink. Four participants were...... assigned to have two additional beers (MSt2). In addition to plasma and urine samples, test beverages, wort and hops extract were analyzed by UPLC-QTOF. A unique metabolite pattern reflecting beer metabolome, including metabolites derived from beer raw material (i.e. N-methyl tyramine sulfate and the sum...

  5. Is physical space unique or optional

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ekstein, H.; Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, 13 - Marseille

    1975-02-01

    There are two concepts of the physical space-time. One, S(F), is that of a fixed arena in which events take place. The other S(D), is that of a space-time shaped by events. The second depends on the state (initial conditions) or on the external field, the first does not. The main assertions of the present paper are: 1) the fixed space-time S(F) is neither incompatibles with nor made superfluous, by Einstein's theory. S(F) is experimentally explorable, unique, and probably identical with Minkowski space M. 2) The dynamical space S(D) is largely optional. It can be chosen to be M, but the natural choice is Einstein's pseudo-Riemanian manifold [fr

  6. ARAC: A unique command and control resource

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bradley, M.M.; Baskett, R.L.; Ellis, J.S.

    1996-04-01

    The Atmospheric Release Advisory Capability (ARAC) at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) is a centralized federal facility designed to provide real-time, world-wide support to military and civilian command and control centers by predicting the impacts of inadvertent or intentional releases of nuclear, biological, or chemical materials into the atmosphere. ARAC is a complete response system consisting of highly trained and experienced personnel, continually updated computer models, redundant data collection systems, and centralized and remote computer systems. With over 20 years of experience responding to domestic and international incidents, strong linkages with the Department of Defense, and the ability to conduct classified operations, ARAC is a unique command and control resource

  7. ARAC: A unique command and control resource

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bradley, M.M.; Baskett, R.L.; Ellis, J.S. [and others

    1996-04-01

    The Atmospheric Release Advisory Capability (ARAC) at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) is a centralized federal facility designed to provide real-time, world-wide support to military and civilian command and control centers by predicting the impacts of inadvertent or intentional releases of nuclear, biological, or chemical materials into the atmosphere. ARAC is a complete response system consisting of highly trained and experienced personnel, continually updated computer models, redundant data collection systems, and centralized and remote computer systems. With over 20 years of experience responding to domestic and international incidents, strong linkages with the Department of Defense, and the ability to conduct classified operations, ARAC is a unique command and control resource.

  8. Unique computer system for safeguards use

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuckertz, T.H.; Pratt, J.C.

    1981-01-01

    Microprocessors have been used to implement specialized scientific data processing systems since 1976. One such system, the LeCroy 3500, is presently being used by the Detection and Verification Group of the Energy Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory for a large variety of tasks involving measurement of various nuclear parameters associated with radioactive materials. The system is unique because it can do not only sophisticated pulse height and multi-scale analyses but also other analyses that are limited only by the availability fo CAMAC modules that would acquire data from exotic experiments. The system is also field portable which extends the range of experiments that it can control. Four applications of this system are described in this paper: (1) plutonium storage vault monitoring, (2) coded aperture image reconstruction, (3) spatial distribution of gamma radiation, and (4) nuclear waste management. 7 figures

  9. 2XIIB vacuum vessel: a unique design

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hibbs, S.M.; Calderon, M.O.

    1975-01-01

    The 2XIIB mirror confinement experiment makes unique demands on its vacuum system. The confinement coil set encloses a cavity whose surface is comprised of both simple and compound curves. Within this cavity and at the core of the machine is the operating vacuum which is on the order of 10 -9 Torr. The vacuum container fits inside the cavity, presenting an inside surface suitable for titanium getter pumping and a means of removing the heat load imposed by incandescent sublimator wires. In addition, the cavity is constructed of nonmagnetic and nonconducting materials (nonmetals) to avoid distortion of the pulsed confinement field. It is also isolated from mechanical shocks induced in the machine's main structure when the coils are pulsed. This paper describes the design, construction, and operation of the 2XIIB high-vacuum vessel that has been performing successfully since early 1974

  10. The unique ethics of sports medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Rob

    2004-04-01

    The ethical code by which physicians traditionally conduct themselves is based on the relationship between the physician and the patient: both work toward the goal of improving or maintaining health. Constraints on this relationship may be behaviors of patient choice (tobacco use, excessive alcohol use, sedentary behavior, and so on). The athlete-physician relationship is ethically different. Influences such as the physician's employer, the athlete's desire to play with pain and injury, and the economic consequences of playing or not complicate medical decisions. This perspective suggests something different and even unique about the ethics of the sports medicine practitioner. This article explores the differences fostering the ethical tight ropes that sports physicians walk in their sports medicine practices.

  11. MRI: unique costing and pricing issues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, H W; Jarl, D F

    1985-01-01

    Acquisition of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) involves a plethora of costs not traditionally encountered in radiology procedure cost accounting models. Experiences with MRI gained at the University of Minnesota Hospitals and Clinics during 1984 uncovered a wide variety of unique costing issues which were eventually identified at the time when the MRI hospital charge was being established. Our experience at UMHC can provide those radiology departments now acquiring MRI with an earlier awareness of these special costing issues, hopefully resulting in better and more timely data collection. Current reimbursement and pricing issues are also having a dramatic impact on MRI costs at each institution and must be assessed in terms of third-party payor intentions.

  12. Unique Fock quantization of scalar cosmological perturbations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Méndez, Mikel; Mena Marugán, Guillermo A.; Olmedo, Javier; Velhinho, José M.

    2012-05-01

    We investigate the ambiguities in the Fock quantization of the scalar perturbations of a Friedmann-Lemaître-Robertson-Walker model with a massive scalar field as matter content. We consider the case of compact spatial sections (thus avoiding infrared divergences), with the topology of a three-sphere. After expanding the perturbations in series of eigenfunctions of the Laplace-Beltrami operator, the Hamiltonian of the system is written up to quadratic order in them. We fix the gauge of the local degrees of freedom in two different ways, reaching in both cases the same qualitative results. A canonical transformation, which includes the scaling of the matter-field perturbations by the scale factor of the geometry, is performed in order to arrive at a convenient formulation of the system. We then study the quantization of these perturbations in the classical background determined by the homogeneous variables. Based on previous work, we introduce a Fock representation for the perturbations in which: (a) the complex structure is invariant under the isometries of the spatial sections and (b) the field dynamics is implemented as a unitary operator. These two properties select not only a unique unitary equivalence class of representations, but also a preferred field description, picking up a canonical pair of field variables among all those that can be obtained by means of a time-dependent scaling of the matter field (completed into a linear canonical transformation). Finally, we present an equivalent quantization constructed in terms of gauge-invariant quantities. We prove that this quantization can be attained by a mode-by-mode time-dependent linear canonical transformation which admits a unitary implementation, so that it is also uniquely determined.

  13. Evidence that viral RNAs have evolved for efficient, two-stage packaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borodavka, Alexander; Tuma, Roman; Stockley, Peter G

    2012-09-25

    Genome packaging is an essential step in virus replication and a potential drug target. Single-stranded RNA viruses have been thought to encapsidate their genomes by gradual co-assembly with capsid subunits. In contrast, using a single molecule fluorescence assay to monitor RNA conformation and virus assembly in real time, with two viruses from differing structural families, we have discovered that packaging is a two-stage process. Initially, the genomic RNAs undergo rapid and dramatic (approximately 20-30%) collapse of their solution conformations upon addition of cognate coat proteins. The collapse occurs with a substoichiometric ratio of coat protein subunits and is followed by a gradual increase in particle size, consistent with the recruitment of additional subunits to complete a growing capsid. Equivalently sized nonviral RNAs, including high copy potential in vivo competitor mRNAs, do not collapse. They do support particle assembly, however, but yield many aberrant structures in contrast to viral RNAs that make only capsids of the correct size. The collapse is specific to viral RNA fragments, implying that it depends on a series of specific RNA-protein interactions. For bacteriophage MS2, we have shown that collapse is driven by subsequent protein-protein interactions, consistent with the RNA-protein contacts occurring in defined spatial locations. Conformational collapse appears to be a distinct feature of viral RNA that has evolved to facilitate assembly. Aspects of this process mimic those seen in ribosome assembly.

  14. Study of Wind Effects on Unique Buildings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olenkov, V.; Puzyrev, P.

    2017-11-01

    The article deals with a numerical simulation of wind effects on the building of the Church of the Intercession of the Holy Virgin in the village Bulzi of the Chelyabinsk region. We presented a calculation algorithm and obtained pressure fields, velocity fields and the fields of kinetic energy of a wind stream, as well as streamlines. Computational fluid dynamic (CFD) evolved three decades ago at the interfaces of calculus mathematics and theoretical hydromechanics and has become a separate branch of science the subject of which is a numerical simulation of different fluid and gas flows as well as the solution of arising problems with the help of methods that involve computer systems. This scientific field which is of a great practical value is intensively developing. The increase in CFD-calculations is caused by the improvement of computer technologies, creation of multipurpose easy-to-use CFD-packagers that are available to a wide group of researchers and cope with various tasks. Such programs are not only competitive in comparison with physical experiments but sometimes they provide the only opportunity to answer the research questions. The following advantages of computer simulation can be pointed out: a) Reduction in time spent on design and development of a model in comparison with a real experiment (variation of boundary conditions). b) Numerical experiment allows for the simulation of conditions that are not reproducible with environmental tests (use of ideal gas as environment). c) Use of computational gas dynamics methods provides a researcher with a complete and ample information that is necessary to fully describe different processes of the experiment. d) Economic efficiency of computer calculations is more attractive than an experiment. e) Possibility to modify a computational model which ensures efficient timing (change of the sizes of wall layer cells in accordance with the chosen turbulence model).

  15. Evolvable Mars Campaign Long Duration Habitation Strategies: Architectural Approaches to Enable Human Exploration Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Matthew A.; Toups, Larry; Howe, A. Scott; Wald, Samuel I.

    2015-01-01

    The Evolvable Mars Campaign (EMC) is the current NASA Mars mission planning effort which seeks to establish sustainable, realistic strategies to enable crewed Mars missions in the mid-2030s timeframe. The primary outcome of the Evolvable Mars Campaign is not to produce "The Plan" for sending humans to Mars, but instead its intent is to inform the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate near-term key decisions and investment priorities to prepare for those types of missions. The FY'15 EMC effort focused upon analysis of integrated mission architectures to identify technically appealing transportation strategies, logistics build-up strategies, and vehicle designs for reaching and exploring Mars moons and Mars surface. As part of the development of this campaign, long duration habitats are required which are capable of supporting crew with limited resupply and crew abort during the Mars transit, Mars moons, and Mars surface segments of EMC missions. In particular, the EMC design team sought to design a single, affordable habitation system whose manufactured units could be outfitted uniquely for each of these missions and reused for multiple crewed missions. This habitat system must provide all of the functionality to safely support 4 crew for long durations while meeting mass and volume constraints for each of the mission segments set by the chosen transportation architecture and propulsion technologies. This paper describes several proposed long-duration habitation strategies to enable the Evolvable Mars Campaign through improvements in mass, cost, and reusability, and presents results of analysis to compare the options and identify promising solutions. The concepts investigated include several monolithic concepts: monolithic clean sheet designs, and concepts which leverage the co-manifested payload capability of NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) to deliver habitable elements within the Universal Payload Adaptor between the SLS upper stage and the Orion

  16. The unique cysteine knot regulates the pleotropic hormone leptin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ellinor Haglund

    Full Text Available Leptin plays a key role in regulating energy intake/expenditure, metabolism and hypertension. It folds into a four-helix bundle that binds to the extracellular receptor to initiate signaling. Our work on leptin revealed a hidden complexity in the formation of a previously un-described, cysteine-knotted topology in leptin. We hypothesized that this unique topology could offer new mechanisms in regulating the protein activity. A combination of in silico simulation and in vitro experiments was used to probe the role of the knotted topology introduced by the disulphide-bridge on leptin folding and function. Our results surprisingly show that the free energy landscape is conserved between knotted and unknotted protein, however the additional complexity added by the knot formation is structurally important. Native state analyses led to the discovery that the disulphide-bond plays an important role in receptor binding and thus mediate biological activity by local motions on distal receptor-binding sites, far removed from the disulphide-bridge. Thus, the disulphide-bridge appears to function as a point of tension that allows dissipation of stress at a distance in leptin.

  17. Unique proteomic signatures distinguish macrophages and dendritic cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lev Becker

    Full Text Available Monocytes differentiate into heterogeneous populations of tissue macrophages and dendritic cells (DCs that regulate inflammation and immunity. Identifying specific populations of myeloid cells in vivo is problematic, however, because only a limited number of proteins have been used to assign cellular phenotype. Using mass spectrometry and bone marrow-derived cells, we provided a global view of the proteomes of M-CSF-derived macrophages, classically and alternatively activated macrophages, and GM-CSF-derived DCs. Remarkably, the expression levels of half the plasma membrane proteins differed significantly in the various populations of cells derived in vitro. Moreover, the membrane proteomes of macrophages and DCs were more distinct than those of classically and alternatively activated macrophages. Hierarchical cluster and dual statistical analyses demonstrated that each cell type exhibited a robust proteomic signature that was unique. To interrogate the phenotype of myeloid cells in vivo, we subjected elicited peritoneal macrophages harvested from wild-type and GM-CSF-deficient mice to mass spectrometric and functional analysis. Unexpectedly, we found that peritoneal macrophages exhibited many features of the DCs generated in vitro. These findings demonstrate that global analysis of the membrane proteome can help define immune cell phenotypes in vivo.

  18. 2BC Non-Structural Protein of Enterovirus A71 Interacts with SNARE Proteins to Trigger Autolysosome Formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Jeffrey K F; Sam, I-Ching; Verlhac, Pauline; Baguet, Joël; Eskelinen, Eeva-Liisa; Faure, Mathias; Chan, Yoke Fun

    2017-07-04

    Viruses have evolved unique strategies to evade or subvert autophagy machinery. Enterovirus A71 (EV-A71) induces autophagy during infection in vitro and in vivo. In this study, we report that EV-A71 triggers autolysosome formation during infection in human rhabdomyosarcoma (RD) cells to facilitate its replication. Blocking autophagosome-lysosome fusion with chloroquine inhibited virus RNA replication, resulting in lower viral titres, viral RNA copies and viral proteins. Overexpression of the non-structural protein 2BC of EV-A71 induced autolysosome formation. Yeast 2-hybrid and co-affinity purification assays showed that 2BC physically and specifically interacted with a N -ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment receptor (SNARE) protein, syntaxin-17 (STX17). Co-immunoprecipitation assay further showed that 2BC binds to SNARE proteins, STX17 and synaptosome associated protein 29 (SNAP29). Transient knockdown of STX17, SNAP29, and microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3B (LC3B), crucial proteins in the fusion between autophagosomes and lysosomes) as well as the lysosomal-associated membrane protein 1 (LAMP1) impaired production of infectious EV-A71 in RD cells. Collectively, these results demonstrate that the generation of autolysosomes triggered by the 2BC non-structural protein is important for EV-A71 replication, revealing a potential molecular pathway targeted by the virus to exploit autophagy. This study opens the possibility for the development of novel antivirals that specifically target 2BC to inhibit formation of autolysosomes during EV-A71 infection.

  19. Structure determination of human Lck unique and SH3 domains by nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Willbold Dieter

    2003-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein tyrosine kinases are involved in signal transduction pathways that regulate cell growth, differentiation, activation and transformation. Human lymphocyte specific kinase (Lck is a 56 kDa protein involved in T-cell- and IL2-receptor signaling. Three-dimensional structures are known for SH3, SH2 and kinase domains of Lck as well as for other tyrosine kinases. No structure is known for the unique domain of any Src-type tyrosine kinase. Results Lck(1–120 comprising unique and SH3 domains was structurally investigated by nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. We found the unique domain, in contrast to the SH3 part, to have basically no defined structural elements. The solution structure of the SH3 part could be determined with very high precision. It does not show significant differences to Lck SH3 in the absence of the unique domain. Minor differences were observed to the X-ray structure of Lck SH3. Conclusion The unique domain of Lck does not contain any defined structure elements in the absence of ligands and membranes. Presence of the unique domain is not relevant to the three-dimensional structure of the Lck SH3 domain.

  20. The Congenital Heart Surgeons Society Datacenter: unique attributes as a research organization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caldarone, Christopher A; Williams, William G

    2010-01-01

    Over the last 25 years, the Congenital Heart Surgeons Society (CHSS) has evolved from an informal club to a mature organization. A central feature of the CHSS has been dedication to evaluating outcomes of congenital heart surgery across a wide array of clinical diagnoses. These research activities have been orchestrated through the CHSS Datacenter, which has developed a unique organizational structure that has strengths and weaknesses in comparison to other research organizational structures (e.g., prospective randomized trials, registries, etc). This review will highlight the unique attributes of the CHSS Datacenter with emphasis on the Datacenter's strengths and weaknesses in comparison to other organizational structures. Copyright (c) 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Targeted disruption in mice of a neural stem cell-maintaining, KRAB-Zn finger-encoding gene that has rapidly evolved in the human lineage.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huan-Chieh Chien

    Full Text Available Understanding the genetic basis of the physical and behavioral traits that separate humans from other primates is a challenging but intriguing topic. The adaptive functions of the expansion and/or reduction in human brain size have long been explored. From a brain transcriptome project we have identified a KRAB-Zn finger protein-encoding gene (M003-A06 that has rapidly evolved since the human-chimpanzee separation. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis of different human tissues indicates that M003-A06 expression is enriched in the human fetal brain in addition to the fetal heart. Furthermore, analysis with use of immunofluorescence staining, neurosphere culturing and Western blotting indicates that the mouse ortholog of M003-A06, Zfp568, is expressed mainly in the embryonic stem (ES cells and fetal as well as adult neural stem cells (NSCs. Conditional gene knockout experiments in mice demonstrates that Zfp568 is both an NSC maintaining- and a brain size-regulating gene. Significantly, molecular genetic analyses show that human M003-A06 consists of 2 equilibrated allelic types, H and C, one of which (H is human-specific. Combined contemporary genotyping and database mining have revealed interesting genetic associations between the different genotypes of M003-A06 and the human head sizes. We propose that M003-A06 is likely one of the genes contributing to the uniqueness of the human brain in comparison to other higher primates.

  2. Modeling and clustering users with evolving profiles in usage streams

    KAUST Repository

    Zhang, Chongsheng

    2012-09-01

    Today, there is an increasing need of data stream mining technology to discover important patterns on the fly. Existing data stream models and algorithms commonly assume that users\\' records or profiles in data streams will not be updated or revised once they arrive. Nevertheless, in various applications such asWeb usage, the records/profiles of the users can evolve along time. This kind of streaming data evolves in two forms, the streaming of tuples or transactions as in the case of traditional data streams, and more importantly, the evolving of user records/profiles inside the streams. Such data streams bring difficulties on modeling and clustering for exploring users\\' behaviors. In this paper, we propose three models to summarize this kind of data streams, which are the batch model, the Evolving Objects (EO) model and the Dynamic Data Stream (DDS) model. Through creating, updating and deleting user profiles, these models summarize the behaviors of each user as a profile object. Based upon these models, clustering algorithms are employed to discover interesting user groups from the profile objects. We have evaluated all the proposed models on a large real-world data set, showing that the DDS model summarizes the data streams with evolving tuples more efficiently and effectively, and provides better basis for clustering users than the other two models. © 2012 IEEE.

  3. Modeling and clustering users with evolving profiles in usage streams

    KAUST Repository

    Zhang, Chongsheng; Masseglia, Florent; Zhang, Xiangliang

    2012-01-01

    Today, there is an increasing need of data stream mining technology to discover important patterns on the fly. Existing data stream models and algorithms commonly assume that users' records or profiles in data streams will not be updated or revised once they arrive. Nevertheless, in various applications such asWeb usage, the records/profiles of the users can evolve along time. This kind of streaming data evolves in two forms, the streaming of tuples or transactions as in the case of traditional data streams, and more importantly, the evolving of user records/profiles inside the streams. Such data streams bring difficulties on modeling and clustering for exploring users' behaviors. In this paper, we propose three models to summarize this kind of data streams, which are the batch model, the Evolving Objects (EO) model and the Dynamic Data Stream (DDS) model. Through creating, updating and deleting user profiles, these models summarize the behaviors of each user as a profile object. Based upon these models, clustering algorithms are employed to discover interesting user groups from the profile objects. We have evaluated all the proposed models on a large real-world data set, showing that the DDS model summarizes the data streams with evolving tuples more efficiently and effectively, and provides better basis for clustering users than the other two models. © 2012 IEEE.

  4. Protein dimerization and oligomerization in biology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Matthews, Jacqueline M

    2012-01-01

    .... However, protein function is so often linked to both homo- and hetero-oligomerization and many heterologous interactions likely evolved from homologous interaction, so this volume also covers many...

  5. Alpbach Summer School - a unique learning experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kern, K.; Aulinas, J.; Clifford, D.; Krejci, D.; Topham, R.

    2011-12-01

    The Alpbach Summer School is a ten-day program that provides a unique opportunity for young european science and engineering students, both undergraduate and graduate, to learn how to approach the entire design process of a space mission. The theme of the 2010 Summer School was "New Space Missions to Understand Climate Change", a current, challenging, very broad and complex topic. The program was established more than 35 years ago and is organised in two interrelated parts: a series of lectures held by renowned experts in the field (in the case of this specific year, climate change and space engineering experts) that provides a technical and scientific background for the workshops that follow, the core of the Summer School. For the workshops the students are split into four international, interdisciplinary teams of about 15 students. In 2010 every team had to complete a number of tasks, four in total: (1) identify climate change research gaps and design a space mission that has not yet been flown or proposed, (2) define the science objectives and requirements of the mission, (3) design a spacecraft that meets the mission requirements, which includes spacecraft design and construction, payload definition, orbit calculations, but also the satellite launch, operation and mission costs and (4) write up a short mission proposal and present the results to an expert review panel. Achieving these tasks in only a few days in a multicultural, interdisciplinary team represents a major challenge for all participants and provides an excellent practical learning experience. Over the course of the program, students do not just learn facts about climate change and space engineering, but scientists also learn from engineers and engineers from scientists. The participants have to deepen their knowledge in an often unfamiliar field, develop organisational and team-work skills and work under pressure. Moreover, teams are supported by team and roving tutors and get the opportunity to

  6. Might "Unique" Factors Be "Common"? On the Possibility of Indeterminate Common-Unique Covariances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grayson, Dave

    2006-01-01

    The present paper shows that the usual factor analytic structured data dispersion matrix lambda psi lambda' + delta can readily arise from a set of scores y = lambda eta + epsilon, shere the "common" (eta) and "unique" (epsilon) factors have nonzero covariance: gamma = Cov epsilon,eta) is not equal to 0. Implications of this finding are discussed…

  7. Detecting Beer Intake by Unique Metabolite Patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gürdeniz, Gözde; Jensen, Morten Georg; Meier, Sebastian; Bech, Lene; Lund, Erik; Dragsted, Lars Ove

    2016-12-02

    Evaluation of the health related effects of beer intake is hampered by the lack of accurate tools for assessing intakes (biomarkers). Therefore, we identified plasma and urine metabolites associated with recent beer intake by untargeted metabolomics and established a characteristic metabolite pattern representing raw materials and beer production as a qualitative biomarker of beer intake. In a randomized, crossover, single-blinded meal study (MSt1), 18 participants were given, one at a time, four different test beverages: strong, regular, and nonalcoholic beers and a soft drink. Four participants were assigned to have two additional beers (MSt2). In addition to plasma and urine samples, test beverages, wort, and hops extract were analyzed by UPLC-QTOF. A unique metabolite pattern reflecting beer metabolome, including metabolites derived from beer raw material (i.e., N-methyl tyramine sulfate and the sum of iso-α-acids and tricyclohumols) and the production process (i.e., pyro-glutamyl proline and 2-ethyl malate), was selected to establish a compliance biomarker model for detection of beer intake based on MSt1. The model predicted the MSt2 samples collected before and up to 12 h after beer intake correctly (AUC = 1). A biomarker model including four metabolites representing both beer raw materials and production steps provided a specific and accurate tool for measurement of beer consumption.

  8. Unique features in the ARIES glovebox line

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martinez, H.E.; Brown, W.G.; Flamm, B.; James, C.A.; Laskie, R.; Nelson, T.O.; Wedman, D.E.

    1998-01-01

    A series of unique features have been incorporated into the Advanced Recovery and Integrated Extraction System (ARIES) at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, TA-55 Plutonium Facility. The features enhance the material handling in the process of the dismantlement of nuclear weapon primaries in the glovebox line. Incorporated into these features are the various plutonium process module's different ventilation zone requirements that the material handling systems must meet. These features include a conveyor system that consists of a remotely controlled cart that transverses the length of the conveyor glovebox, can be operated from a remote location and can deliver process components to the entrance of any selected module glovebox. Within the modules there exists linear motion material handling systems with lifting hoist, which are controlled via an Allen Bradley control panel or local control panels. To remove the packaged products from the hot process line, the package is processed through an air lock/electrolytic decontamination process that removes the radioactive contamination from the outside of the package container and allows the package to be removed from the process line

  9. Clinical EPR: Unique Opportunities and Some Challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swartz, Harold M.; Williams, Benjamin B.; Zaki, Bassem I.; Hartford, Alan C.; Jarvis, Lesley A.; Chen, Eunice; Comi, Richard J.; Ernstoff, Marc S.; Hou, Huagang; Khan, Nadeem; Swarts, Steven G.; Flood, Ann B.; Kuppusamy, Periannan

    2014-01-01

    Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy has been well established as a viable technique for measurement of free radicals and oxygen in biological systems, from in vitro cellular systems to in vivo small animal models of disease. However, the use of EPR in human subjects in the clinical setting, although attractive for a variety of important applications such as oxygen measurement, is challenged with several factors including the need for instrumentation customized for human subjects, probe and regulatory constraints. This paper describes the rationale and development of the first clinical EPR systems for two important clinical applications, namely, measurement of tissue oxygen (oximetry), and radiation dose (dosimetry) in humans. The clinical spectrometers operate at 1.2 GHz frequency and use surface loop resonators capable of providing topical measurements up to 1 cm depth in tissues. Tissue pO2 measurements can be carried out noninvasively and repeatedly after placement of an oxygen-sensitive paramagnetic material (currently India ink) at the site of interest. Our EPR dosimetry system is capable of measuring radiation-induced free radicals in the tooth of irradiated human subjects to determine the exposure dose. These developments offer potential opportunities for clinical dosimetry and oximetry, which include guiding therapy for individual patients with tumors or vascular disease, by monitoring of tissue oxygenation. Further work is in progress to translate this unique technology to routine clinical practice. PMID:24439333

  10. TDRSS S-shuttle unique receiver equipment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinberg, A.; Schwartz, J. J.; Spearing, R.

    1985-01-01

    Beginning with STS-9, the Tracking and Date Relay Satellite system (TDRSS) will start providing S- and Ku-band communications and tracking support to the Space Shuttle and its payloads. The most significant element of this support takes place at the TDRSS White Sands Ground Terminal, which processes the Shuttle return link S- and Ku-band signals. While Ku-band hardware available to other TDRSS users is also applied to Ku-Shuttle, stringent S-Shuttle link margins have precluded the application of the standard TDRSS S-band processing equipment to S-Shuttle. It was therfore found necessary to develop a unique S-Shuttle Receiver that embodies state-of-the-art digital technology and processing techniques. This receiver, developed by Motorola, Inc., enhances link margins by 1.5 dB relative to the standard S-band equipment and its bit error rate performance is within a few tenths of a dB of theory. An overview description of the Space Shuttle Receiver Equipment (SSRE) is presented which includes the presentation of block diagrams and salient design features. Selected, measured performance results are also presented.

  11. The AD: The unique anti-accelerator

    CERN Multimedia

    Slide show by Maximilien Brice. Voice (French only): Jacques Fichet. Content: Paola Catapano, Django Manglunki, CERN Bulletin

    2011-01-01

    Unlike other machines whose performance is measured in terms of energy records, AD's uniqueness resides in the fact that it can very effectively decelerate beams. At the hearth of antimatter production at CERN, the AD is making headlines in the world's press. This provides an excellent opportunity for us to retrace its history in images.   var flash_video_player=get_video_player_path(); insert_player_for_external('Video/Public/Movies/2011/CERN-MOVIE-2011-083/CERN-MOVIE-2011-083-0753-kbps-480x360-25-fps-audio-64-kbps-44-kHz-stereo', 'mms://mediastream.cern.ch/MediaArchive/Video/Public/Movies/2011/CERN-MOVIE-2011-083/CERN-MOVIE-2011-083-0480-kbps-384x288-25-fps-audio-128-kbps-48-kHz-stereo.wmv', 'false', 480, 360, 'http://mediaarchive.cern.ch/MediaArchive/Video/Public/Movies/2011/CERN-MOVIE-2011-083/CERN-MOVIE-2011-083-posterframe-480x360-at-5-percent.jpg', '1357551', true, '');  

  12. Hausdorff dimension of unique beta expansions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kong, Derong; Li, Wenxia

    2015-01-01

    Given an integer N ⩾ 2 and a real number β > 1, let Γ β, N be the set of all x=∑ i=1 ∞ d i /β i with d i  ∈ {0, 1, ···, N − 1} for all i ⩾ 1. The infinite sequence (d i ) is called a β-expansion of x. Let U β,N be the set of all x's in Γ β,N which have unique β-expansions. We give explicit formula of the Hausdorff dimension of U β,N for β in any admissible interval [β L , β U ], where β L is a purely Parry number while β U is a transcendental number whose quasi-greedy expansion of 1 is related to the classical Thue–Morse sequence. This allows us to calculate the Hausdorff dimension of U β,N for almost every β > 1. In particular, this improves the main results of Gábor Kallós (1999, 2001). Moreover, we find that the dimension function f(β) = dim H U β,N fluctuates frequently for β ∈ (1, N). (paper)

  13. FY1995 evolvable hardware chip; 1995 nendo shinkasuru hardware chip

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1997-03-01

    This project aims at the development of 'Evolvable Hardware' (EHW) which can adapt its hardware structure to the environment to attain better hardware performance, under the control of genetic algorithms. EHW is a key technology to explore the new application area requiring real-time performance and on-line adaptation. 1. Development of EHW-LSI for function level hardware evolution, which includes 15 DSPs in one chip. 2. Application of the EHW to the practical industrial applications such as data compression, ATM control, digital mobile communication. 3. Two patents : (1) the architecture and the processing method for programmable EHW-LSI. (2) The method of data compression for loss-less data, using EHW. 4. The first international conference for evolvable hardware was held by authors: Intl. Conf. on Evolvable Systems (ICES96). It was determined at ICES96 that ICES will be held every two years between Japan and Europe. So the new society has been established by us. (NEDO)

  14. Evolving Systems: An Outcome of Fondest Hopes and Wildest Dreams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frost, Susan A.; Balas, Mark J.

    2012-01-01

    New theory is presented for evolving systems, which are autonomously controlled subsystems that self-assemble into a new evolved system with a higher purpose. Evolving systems of aerospace structures often require additional control when assembling to maintain stability during the entire evolution process. This is the concept of Adaptive Key Component Control that operates through one specific component to maintain stability during the evolution. In addition, this control must often overcome persistent disturbances that occur while the evolution is in progress. Theoretical results will be presented for Adaptive Key Component control for persistent disturbance rejection. An illustrative example will demonstrate the Adaptive Key Component controller on a system composed of rigid body and flexible body modes.

  15. Qualitative Functional Decomposition Analysis of Evolved Neuromorphic Flight Controllers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanjay K. Boddhu

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available In the previous work, it was demonstrated that one can effectively employ CTRNN-EH (a neuromorphic variant of EH method methodology to evolve neuromorphic flight controllers for a flapping wing robot. This paper describes a novel frequency grouping-based analysis technique, developed to qualitatively decompose the evolved controllers into explainable functional control blocks. A summary of the previous work related to evolving flight controllers for two categories of the controller types, called autonomous and nonautonomous controllers, is provided, and the applicability of the newly developed decomposition analysis for both controller categories is demonstrated. Further, the paper concludes with appropriate discussion of ongoing work and implications for possible future work related to employing the CTRNN-EH methodology and the decomposition analysis techniques presented in this paper.

  16. Computational Genetic Regulatory Networks Evolvable, Self-organizing Systems

    CERN Document Server

    Knabe, Johannes F

    2013-01-01

    Genetic Regulatory Networks (GRNs) in biological organisms are primary engines for cells to enact their engagements with environments, via incessant, continually active coupling. In differentiated multicellular organisms, tremendous complexity has arisen in the course of evolution of life on earth. Engineering and science have so far achieved no working system that can compare with this complexity, depth and scope of organization. Abstracting the dynamics of genetic regulatory control to a computational framework in which artificial GRNs in artificial simulated cells differentiate while connected in a changing topology, it is possible to apply Darwinian evolution in silico to study the capacity of such developmental/differentiated GRNs to evolve. In this volume an evolutionary GRN paradigm is investigated for its evolvability and robustness in models of biological clocks, in simple differentiated multicellularity, and in evolving artificial developing 'organisms' which grow and express an ontogeny starting fr...

  17. Mushroom immunomodulators: unique molecules with unlimited applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El Enshasy, Hesham A; Hatti-Kaul, Rajni

    2013-12-01

    For centuries, mushrooms have been used as food and medicine in different cultures. More recently, many bioactive compounds have been isolated from different types of mushrooms. Among these, immunomodulators have gained much interest based on the increasing growth of the immunotherapy sector. Mushroom immunomodulators are classified under four categories based on their chemical nature as: lectins, terpenoids, proteins, and polysaccharides. These compounds are produced naturally in mushrooms cultivated in greenhouses. For effective industrial production, cultivation is carried out in submerged culture to increase the bioactive compound yield, decrease the production time, and reduce the cost of downstream processing. This review provides a comprehensive overview on mushroom immunomodulators in terms of chemistry, industrial production, and applications in medical and nonmedical sectors. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Peatlands as a unique climatic hotspots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slowinska, S.; Marcisz, K.; Slowinski, M. M.; Blazejczyk, K.; Lamentowicz, M.

    2017-12-01

    Peatlands are unique environments, often acting as microrefugia of various taxa. High groundwater table, organic soils, specific vegetation and topography are important determinants of their local climatic conditions. However, relations between those determinants are not stable. For example, seasonal changes in weather patterns, hydrological dynamics, and local vegetation may alter microclimate. Additionally, long-term changes are important factor, as for example overgrowing due to significant change of microclimate conditions, what in turn changes geochemical and biological processes in the peat layer. We have been investigating interactions between abiotic and biotic factors of a small Sphagnum mire (ca. 6.0 ha) for over ten years now. The mire is located in Poland in transitional temperate climate and is the only place in polish lowlands where glacial relict Betula nana occurs. Identification of local climate of the mire, its microclimatic differentiation and its influence on surroundings were objectives of the study. We recorded water level fluctuations, photosynthetically active radiation (PAR), air temperature and humidity, and peat temperature at five monitoring plots at the mire and observed significant differences between them. We also investigated Sphagnum mosses growth and testate amoeba diversity and community structure to understand biological response of those differences. We observed that local climate of the mire was significantly different from open area reference place, it was much colder especially during nights. The average minimal temperature at the height 30 cm for growing seasons 2010-2012 was 3.7oC lower there and ground frosts occurred even in the summer. The climate of the mire affected the forest directly adjacent to it, and depending on weather conditions the strength and the distance of this interaction was different. Our results show that micro-environmental changes affects on biological processes and should be taken into consideration

  19. Lourdes: A uniquely Catholic approach to medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dichoso, Travis Jon

    2015-02-01

    As an American medical student, I spent the summer break between my first and second year in Lourdes, France, the site where the Immaculate Conception appeared eighteen times to St. Bernadette in 1858 as proclaimed approved by the Catholic Church and whose water is associated with over seven thousand unexplained cures. During this time I volunteered with St. Joseph's Service and Poste Secour, followed several medical teams taking care of large pilgrim groups, and shadowed Dr. Alessandro de Franciscis the president of Le Bureau des Constations Médicales, the office in Lourdes charged with investigating claims of miracles. Through my experiences, I found the mission of medicine in Lourdes to be twofold: to provide the critical care needed to give sick persons the chance to transform their experience of disease through their faith; and secondly, through the efforts of the Medical Bureau, to be an instrument by which we can comprehend the wonders of the work of God. I conclude that this twofold mission should inform the work of every Catholic in health care or research, and Lourdes provides the venue par excellence to cultivate this mission. Lay Summary: Lourdes is a pilgrimage site in southern France that has been associated with medical miracles for the past 150 years. The site is unique in that throughout its history, physicians, of any or no faith, have been invited to participate in the proceedings of the investigations of each claimed cure. The investigations have formalized into a process handled by the Lourdes Medical Bureau and the Lourdes International Medical Association. Travis Dichoso, an American medical student, writes about his experiences as part of this process.

  20. Genetic Correlations Greatly Increase Mutational Robustness and Can Both Reduce and Enhance Evolvability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sam F Greenbury

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Mutational neighbourhoods in genotype-phenotype (GP maps are widely believed to be more likely to share characteristics than expected from random chance. Such genetic correlations should strongly influence evolutionary dynamics. We explore and quantify these intuitions by comparing three GP maps-a model for RNA secondary structure, the HP model for protein tertiary structure, and the Polyomino model for protein quaternary structure-to a simple random null model that maintains the number of genotypes mapping to each phenotype, but assigns genotypes randomly. The mutational neighbourhood of a genotype in these GP maps is much more likely to contain genotypes mapping to the same phenotype than in the random null model. Such neutral correlations can be quantified by the robustness to mutations, which can be many orders of magnitude larger than that of the null model, and crucially, above the critical threshold for the formation of large neutral networks of mutationally connected genotypes which enhance the capacity for the exploration of phenotypic novelty. Thus neutral correlations increase evolvability. We also study non-neutral correlations: Compared to the null model, i If a particular (non-neutral phenotype is found once in the 1-mutation neighbourhood of a genotype, then the chance of finding that phenotype multiple times in this neighbourhood is larger than expected; ii If two genotypes are connected by a single neutral mutation, then their respective non-neutral 1-mutation neighbourhoods are more likely to be similar; iii If a genotype maps to a folding or self-assembling phenotype, then its non-neutral neighbours are less likely to be a potentially deleterious non-folding or non-assembling phenotype. Non-neutral correlations of type i and ii reduce the rate at which new phenotypes can be found by neutral exploration, and so may diminish evolvability, while non-neutral correlations of type iii may instead facilitate evolutionary exploration

  1. Genetic Correlations Greatly Increase Mutational Robustness and Can Both Reduce and Enhance Evolvability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenbury, Sam F.; Schaper, Steffen; Ahnert, Sebastian E.; Louis, Ard A.

    2016-01-01

    Mutational neighbourhoods in genotype-phenotype (GP) maps are widely believed to be more likely to share characteristics than expected from random chance. Such genetic correlations should strongly influence evolutionary dynamics. We explore and quantify these intuitions by comparing three GP maps—a model for RNA secondary structure, the HP model for protein tertiary structure, and the Polyomino model for protein quaternary structure—to a simple random null model that maintains the number of genotypes mapping to each phenotype, but assigns genotypes randomly. The mutational neighbourhood of a genotype in these GP maps is much more likely to contain genotypes mapping to the same phenotype than in the random null model. Such neutral correlations can be quantified by the robustness to mutations, which can be many orders of magnitude larger than that of the null model, and crucially, above the critical threshold for the formation of large neutral networks of mutationally connected genotypes which enhance the capacity for the exploration of phenotypic novelty. Thus neutral correlations increase evolvability. We also study non-neutral correlations: Compared to the null model, i) If a particular (non-neutral) phenotype is found once in the 1-mutation neighbourhood of a genotype, then the chance of finding that phenotype multiple times in this neighbourhood is larger than expected; ii) If two genotypes are connected by a single neutral mutation, then their respective non-neutral 1-mutation neighbourhoods are more likely to be similar; iii) If a genotype maps to a folding or self-assembling phenotype, then its non-neutral neighbours are less likely to be a potentially deleterious non-folding or non-assembling phenotype. Non-neutral correlations of type i) and ii) reduce the rate at which new phenotypes can be found by neutral exploration, and so may diminish evolvability, while non-neutral correlations of type iii) may instead facilitate evolutionary exploration and so

  2. Canada’s Evolving Crown: From a British Crown to a “Crown of Maples”

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Romaniuk Scott Nicholas

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available This article examines how instruments have changed the Crown of Canada from 1867 through to the present, how this change has been effected, and the extent to which the Canadian Crown is distinct from the British Crown. The main part of this article focuses on the manner in which law, politics, and policy (both Canadian and non-Canadian have evolved a British Imperial institution since the process by which the federal Dominion of Canada was formed nearly 150 years ago through to a nation uniquely Canadian as it exists today. The evolution of the Canadian Crown has taken place through approximately fifteen discrete events since the time of Canadian confederation on July 1, 1867. These fifteen events are loosely categorized into three discrete periods: The Imperial Crown (1867-1930, A Shared Crown (1931-1981, and The Canadian Crown (1982-present.

  3. The faculty of language: what is it, who has it, and how did it evolve?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauser, Marc D; Chomsky, Noam; Fitch, W Tecumseh

    2002-11-22

    We argue that an understanding of the faculty of language requires substantial interdisciplinary cooperation. We suggest how current developments in linguistics can be profitably wedded to work in evolutionary biology, anthropology, psychology, and neuroscience. We submit that a distinction should be made between the faculty of language in the broad sense (FLB) and in the narrow sense (FLN). FLB includes a sensory-motor system, a conceptual-intentional system, and the computational mechanisms for recursion, providing the capacity to generate an infinite range of expressions from a finite set of elements. We hypothesize that FLN only includes recursion and is the only uniquely human component of the faculty of language. We further argue that FLN may have evolved for reasons other than language, hence comparative studies might look for evidence of such computations outside of the domain of communication (for example, number, navigation, and social relations).

  4. Skipper genome sheds light on unique phenotypic traits and phylogeny.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cong, Qian; Borek, Dominika; Otwinowski, Zbyszek; Grishin, Nick V

    2015-08-27

    Butterflies and moths are emerging as model organisms in genetics and evolutionary studies. The family Hesperiidae (skippers) was traditionally viewed as a sister to other butterflies based on its moth-like morphology and darting flight habits with fast wing beats. However, DNA studies suggest that the family Papilionidae (swallowtails) may be the sister to other butterflies including skippers. The moth-like features and the controversial position of skippers in Lepidoptera phylogeny make them valuable targets for comparative genomics. We obtained the 310 Mb draft genome of the Clouded Skipper (Lerema accius) from a wild-caught specimen using a cost-effective strategy that overcomes the high (1.6 %) heterozygosity problem. Comparative analysis of Lerema accius and the highly heterozygous genome of Papilio glaucus revealed differences in patterns of SNP distribution, but similarities in functions of genes that are enriched in non-synonymous SNPs. Comparison of Lepidoptera genomes revealed possible molecular bases for unique traits of skippers: a duplication of electron transport chain components could result in efficient energy supply for their rapid flight; a diversified family of predicted cellulases might allow them to feed on cellulose-enriched grasses; an expansion of pheromone-binding proteins and enzymes for pheromone synthesis implies a more efficient mate-recognition system, which compensates for the lack of clear visual cues due to the similarities in wing colors and patterns of many species of skippers. Phylogenetic analysis of several Lepidoptera genomes suggested that the position of Hesperiidae remains uncertain as the tree topology varied depending on the evolutionary model. Completion of the first genome from the family Hesperiidae allowed comparative analyses with other Lepidoptera that revealed potential genetic bases for the unique phenotypic traits of skippers. This work lays the foundation for future experimental studies of skippers and

  5. Whole-genome sequencing of a laboratory-evolved yeast strain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dunham Maitreya J

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Experimental evolution of microbial populations provides a unique opportunity to study evolutionary adaptation in response to controlled selective pressures. However, until recently it has been difficult to identify the precise genetic changes underlying adaptation at a genome-wide scale. New DNA sequencing technologies now allow the genome of parental and evolved strains of microorganisms to be rapidly determined. Results We sequenced >93.5% of the genome of a laboratory-evolved strain of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and its ancestor at >28× depth. Both single nucleotide polymorphisms and copy number amplifications were found, with specific gains over array-based methodologies previously used to analyze these genomes. Applying a segmentation algorithm to quantify structural changes, we determined the approximate genomic boundaries of a 5× gene amplification. These boundaries guided the recovery of breakpoint sequences, which provide insights into the nature of a complex genomic rearrangement. Conclusions This study suggests that whole-genome sequencing can provide a rapid approach to uncover the genetic basis of evolutionary adaptations, with further applications in the study of laboratory selections and mutagenesis screens. In addition, we show how single-end, short read sequencing data can provide detailed information about structural rearrangements, and generate predictions about the genomic features and processes that underlie genome plasticity.

  6. Artificially Engineered Protein Polymers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yun Jung; Holmberg, Angela L; Olsen, Bradley D

    2017-06-07

    Modern polymer science increasingly requires precise control over macromolecular structure and properties for engineering advanced materials and biomedical systems. The application of biological processes to design and synthesize artificial protein polymers offers a means for furthering macromolecular tunability, enabling polymers with dispersities of ∼1.0 and monomer-level sequence control. Taking inspiration from materials evolved in nature, scientists have created modular building blocks with simplified monomer sequences that replicate the function of natural systems. The corresponding protein engineering toolbox has enabled the systematic development of complex functional polymeric materials across areas as diverse as adhesives, responsive polymers, and medical materials. This review discusses the natural proteins that have inspired the development of key building blocks for protein polymer engineering and the function of these elements in material design. The prospects and progress for scalable commercialization of protein polymers are reviewed, discussing both technology needs and opportunities.

  7. Molecular evolution of the keratin associated protein gene family in mammals, role in the evolution of mammalian hair.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Dong-Dong; Irwin, David M; Zhang, Ya-Ping

    2008-08-23

    Hair is unique to mammals. Keratin associated proteins (KRTAPs), which contain two major groups: high/ultrahigh cysteine and high glycine-tyrosine, are one of the major components of hair and play essential roles in the formation of rigid and resistant hair shafts. The KRTAP family was identified as being unique to mammals, and near-complete KRTAP gene repertoires for eight mammalian genomes were characterized in this study. An expanded KRTAP gene repertoire was found in rodents. Surprisingly, humans have a similar number of genes as other primates despite the relative hairlessness of humans. We identified several new subfamilies not previously reported in the high/ultrahigh cysteine KRTAP genes. Genes in many subfamilies of the high/ultrahigh cysteine KRTAP genes have evolved by concerted evolution with frequent gene conversion events, yielding a higher GC base content for these gene sequences. In contrast, the high glycine-tyrosine KRTAP genes have evolved more dynamically, with fewer gene conversion events and thus have a lower GC base content, possibly due to positive selection. Most of the subfamilies emerged early in the evolution of mammals, thus we propose that the mammalian ancestor should have a diverse KRTAP gene repertoire. We propose that hair content characteristics have evolved and diverged rapidly among mammals because of rapid divergent evolution of KRTAPs between species. In contrast, subfamilies of KRTAP genes have been homogenized within each species due to concerted evolution.

  8. Behaviour of and mass transfer at gas-evolving electrodes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Janssen, L.J.J.

    1989-01-01

    A completes set of models for the mass transfer of indicator ions to gas-evolving electrodes with different behaviour of bubbles is described theoretically. Sliding bubbles, rising detached single bubbles, jumping detached coalescence bubbles and ensembles of these types of bubbles are taken into

  9. Analysis of Lamarckian Evolution in Morphologically Evolving Robots

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jelisavcic, Milan; Kiesel, Rafael; Glette, Kyrre; Haasdijk, Evert; Eiben, A.E.

    Evolving robot morphologies implies the need for lifetime learning so that newborn robots can learn to manipulate their bodies. An individual’s morphology will obviously combine traits of all its parents; it must adapt its own controller to suit its morphology, and cannot rely on the controller of

  10. Evolving fuzzy rules for relaxed-criteria negotiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sim, Kwang Mong

    2008-12-01

    In the literature on automated negotiation, very few negotiation agents are designed with the flexibility to slightly relax their negotiation criteria to reach a consensus more rapidly and with more certainty. Furthermore, these relaxed-criteria negotiation agents were not equipped with the ability to enhance their performance by learning and evolving their relaxed-criteria negotiation rules. The impetus of this work is designing market-driven negotiation agents (MDAs) that not only have the flexibility of relaxing bargaining criteria using fuzzy rules, but can also evolve their structures by learning new relaxed-criteria fuzzy rules to improve their negotiation outcomes as they participate in negotiations in more e-markets. To this end, an evolutionary algorithm for adapting and evolving relaxed-criteria fuzzy rules was developed. Implementing the idea in a testbed, two kinds of experiments for evaluating and comparing EvEMDAs (MDAs with relaxed-criteria rules that are evolved using the evolutionary algorithm) and EMDAs (MDAs with relaxed-criteria rules that are manually constructed) were carried out through stochastic simulations. Empirical results show that: 1) EvEMDAs generally outperformed EMDAs in different types of e-markets and 2) the negotiation outcomes of EvEMDAs generally improved as they negotiated in more e-markets.

  11. Friends Drinking Together: Young Adults' Evolving Support Practices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dresler, Emma; Anderson, Margaret

    2018-01-01

    Purpose: Young adult's drinking is about pleasure, a communal practice of socialising together in a friendship group. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the evolving support practices of drinking groups for better targeting of health communications messages. Design/methodology/approach: This qualitative descriptive study examined the…

  12. Evolving Concepts of Development through the Experience of ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    This project will explore the experiences of emerging and developing countries in order to identify how the concept of international development has evolved and where it they may be heading. It will do so through a series of workshops convening scholars and practitioners from both the developing and the industrialized ...

  13. Heritage – A Conceptually Evolving and Dissonant Phenomenon ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    I therefore, drawing from literature and experiences gained during field observations and focus group interviews, came up with the idea of working with three viewpoints of heritage. Drawing on real life cases I argue that current heritage management and education practices' failure to recognise and respect the evolving, ...

  14. A Conceptual Framework for Evolving, Recommender Online Learning Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peiris, K. Dharini Amitha; Gallupe, R. Brent

    2012-01-01

    A comprehensive conceptual framework is developed and described for evolving recommender-driven online learning systems (ROLS). This framework describes how such systems can support students, course authors, course instructors, systems administrators, and policy makers in developing and using these ROLS. The design science information systems…

  15. Evolving intelligent vehicle control using multi-objective NEAT

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Willigen, W.H. van; Haasdijk, E.; Kester, L.J.H.M.

    2013-01-01

    The research in this paper is inspired by a vision of intelligent vehicles that autonomously move along motorways: they join and leave trains of vehicles (platoons), overtake other vehicles, etc. We propose a multi-objective algorithm based on NEAT and SPEA2 that evolves controllers for such

  16. Hormonal evaluation of the infertile male: has it evolved?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sussman, Ernest M; Chudnovsky, Aleksander; Niederberger, Craig S

    2008-05-01

    An endocrinologic evaluation of patients who have male-factor infertility has clearly evolved and leads to specific diagnoses and treatment strategies in a large population of infertile men. A well-considered endocrine evaluation is especially essential with the ever-growing popularity of assisted reproductive techniques and continued refinements with intracytoplasmic sperm injection.

  17. Regional and Inter-Regional Effects in Evolving Climate Networks

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hlinka, Jaroslav; Hartman, David; Jajcay, Nikola; Vejmelka, Martin; Donner, R.; Marwan, N.; Kurths, J.; Paluš, Milan

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 21, č. 2 (2014), s. 451-462 ISSN 1023-5809 R&D Projects: GA ČR GCP103/11/J068 Institutional support: RVO:67985807 Keywords : climate networks * evolving networks * principal component analysis * network connectivity * El Nino Subject RIV: BB - Applied Statistics, Operational Research Impact factor: 0.987, year: 2014

  18. Multivariate Epi-splines and Evolving Function Identification Problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-04-15

    such extrinsic information as well as observed function and subgradient values often evolve in applications, we establish conditions under which the...previous study [30] dealt with compact intervals of IR. Splines are intimately tied to optimization problems through their variational theory pioneered...approxima- tion. Motivated by applications in curve fitting, regression, probability density estimation, variogram computation, financial curve construction

  19. Adapting Morphology to Multiple Tasks in Evolved Virtual Creatures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lessin, Dan; Fussell, Don; Miikkulainen, Risto

    2014-01-01

    The ESP method for evolving virtual creatures (Lessin et al., 2013) consisted of an encapsulation mechanism to preserve learned skills, a human-designed syllabus to build higherlevel skills by combining lower-level skills systematically, and a pandemonium mechanism to resolve conflicts between...

  20. Exploring the Evolving Professional Identity of Novice School Counselors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bamgbose, Olamojiba Omolara

    2017-01-01

    The study employed a grounded theory approach to explore the evolving professional identity of novice school counselors. Participants, who are currently employed as school counselors at the elementary, middle, or high school level with 1-4 years' experience, were career changers from other helping professions and graduates from an intensive school…

  1. Evaluation and testing methodology for evolving entertainment systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jurgelionis, A.; Bellotti, F.; IJsselsteijn, W.A.; Kort, de Y.A.W.; Bernhaupt, R.; Tscheligi, M.

    2007-01-01

    This paper presents a testing and evaluation methodology for evolving pervasive gaming and multimedia systems. We introduce the Games@Large system, a complex gaming and multimedia architecture comprised of a multitude of elements: heterogeneous end user devices, wireless and wired network

  2. Degree distribution of a new model for evolving networks

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    on intuitive but realistic consideration that nodes are added to the network with both preferential and random attachments. The degree distribution of the model is between a power-law and an exponential decay. Motivated by the features of network evolution, we introduce a new model of evolving networks, incorporating the ...

  3. Evolving Nature of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jourian, T. J.

    2015-01-01

    This chapter discusses the historical and evolving terminology, constructs, and ideologies that inform the language used by those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, and same-gender loving, who may identify as queer, as well as those who are members of trans* communities from multiple and intersectional perspectives.

  4. The Evolving Military Learner Population: A Review of the Literature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ford, Kate; Vignare, Karen

    2015-01-01

    This literature review examines the evolving online military learner population with emphasis on current generation military learners, who are most frequently Post-9/11 veterans. The review synthesizes recent scholarly and grey literature on military learner demographics and attributes, college experiences, and academic outcomes against a backdrop…

  5. The evolving role of governments in the nuclear energy field

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    2004-01-01

    The NEA Nuclear Development Committee (NDC) recently completed a study that looks into the evolving role of governments in nuclear energy matters. Many decisions on government intervention in recent decades have been based on the earlier experience of what works best. The report suggests some considerations that all governments could take into account when establishing their respective roles. (author)

  6. Evolving information systems: meeting the ever-changing environment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oei, J.L.H.; Proper, H.A.; Falkenberg, E.D.

    1994-01-01

    To meet the demands of organizations and their ever-changing environment, information systems are required which are able to evolve to the same extent as organizations do. Such a system has to support changes in all time-and application-dependent aspects. In this paper, requirements and a conceptual

  7. You 3.0: The Most Important Evolving Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamarkin, Molly; Bantz, David A.; Childs, Melody; diFilipo, Stephen; Landry, Stephen G.; LoPresti, Frances; McDonald, Robert H.; McGuthry, John W.; Meier, Tina; Rodrigo, Rochelle; Sparrow, Jennifer; Diggs, D. Teddy; Yang, Catherine W.

    2010-01-01

    That technology evolves is a given. Not as well understood is the impact of technological evolution on each individual--on oneself, one's skill development, one's career, and one's relationship with the work community. The authors believe that everyone in higher education will become an IT worker and that IT workers will be managing a growing…

  8. Sextant: Visualizing time-evolving linked geospatial data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    C. Nikolaou (Charalampos); K. Dogani (Kallirroi); K. Bereta (Konstantina); G. Garbis (George); M. Karpathiotakis (Manos); K. Kyzirakos (Konstantinos); M. Koubarakis (Manolis)

    2015-01-01

    textabstractThe linked open data cloud is constantly evolving as datasets get continuously updated with newer versions. As a result, representing, querying, and visualizing the temporal dimension of linked data is crucial. This is especially important for geospatial datasets that form the backbone

  9. Kerala: a unique model of development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kannan, K P; Thankappan, K R; Ramankutty, V; Aravindan, K P

    1991-12-01

    This article capsules health in terms of morbidity, mortality, and maternal and child health; sex ratios, and population density in Kerala state in India from a more expanded report. Kerala state is known for its highly literate and female literate, and poor income population, but its well advanced state of demographic transition. There is a declining population growth rate, a high average marriage age, a low fertility rate, and a high degree of population mobility. One of the unique features of Kerala is the high female literacy, and the favorable position of women in decision making and a matrilineal inheritance mode. The rights of the poor and underprivileged have been upheld. The largest part of government revenue is spent on education followed by health. Traditional healing systems such the ayurveda are strong in Kerala, and Christian missionaries have contributed to a caring tradition. Morbidity is high and mortality is low because medical interventions have affected morality only. The reduction of poverty and environmentally related diseases has not been accomplished inspite of land reform, mass schooling, and general egalitarian policies. Mortality declines and a decline in birth rates have lead to a more adult and aged population, which increases the prevalence of chronic degenerative diseases. Historically, the death rate in Kerala was always lower (25/1000 in 1930 and 6.4 in 1986). The gains in mortality were made in reducing infant mortality (27/1000), which is 4 times less than India as a whole and comparable to Korea, Panama, Yugoslavia, Sri Lanka, and Colombia. Lower female mortality occurs in the 0-4 years. Life expectancy which was the same as India's in 1930 is currently 12 years higher than India's. Females have a higher expectation of life. The sex ratio in 1981 was 1032 compared to India's of 935. Kerala had almost replacement level in 1985. The crude birth rate is 21 versus 32 for India. In addition to the decline in death rates of those 5

  10. Unitary Evolution as a Uniqueness Criterion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortez, J.; Mena Marugán, G. A.; Olmedo, J.; Velhinho, J. M.

    2015-01-01

    It is well known that the process of quantizing field theories is plagued with ambiguities. First, there is ambiguity in the choice of basic variables describing the system. Second, once a choice of field variables has been made, there is ambiguity concerning the selection of a quantum representation of the corresponding canonical commutation relations. The natural strategy to remove these ambiguities is to demand positivity of energy and to invoke symmetries, namely by requiring that classical symmetries become unitarily implemented in the quantum realm. The success of this strategy depends, however, on the existence of a sufficiently large group of symmetries, usually including time-translation invariance. These criteria are therefore generally insufficient in non-stationary situations, as is typical for free fields in curved spacetimes. Recently, the criterion of unitary implementation of the dynamics has been proposed in order to select a unique quantization in the context of manifestly non-stationary systems. Specifically, the unitarity criterion, together with the requirement of invariance under spatial symmetries, has been successfully employed to remove the ambiguities in the quantization of linearly polarized Gowdy models as well as in the quantization of a scalar field with time varying mass, propagating in a static background whose spatial topology is either of a d-sphere (with d = 1, 2, 3) or a three torus. Following Ref. 3, we will see here that the symmetry and unitarity criteria allows for a complete removal of the ambiguities in the quantization of scalar fields propagating in static spacetimes with compact spatial sections, obeying field equations with an explicitly time-dependent mass, of the form ddot φ - Δ φ + s(t)φ = 0 . These results apply in particular to free fields in spacetimes which, like e.g. in the closed FRW models, are conformal to a static spacetime, by means of an exclusively time-dependent conformal factor. In fact, in such

  11. Adaptive inferential sensors based on evolving fuzzy models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelov, Plamen; Kordon, Arthur

    2010-04-01

    A new technique to the design and use of inferential sensors in the process industry is proposed in this paper, which is based on the recently introduced concept of evolving fuzzy models (EFMs). They address the challenge that the modern process industry faces today, namely, to develop such adaptive and self-calibrating online inferential sensors that reduce the maintenance costs while keeping the high precision and interpretability/transparency. The proposed new methodology makes possible inferential sensors to recalibrate automatically, which reduces significantly the life-cycle efforts for their maintenance. This is achieved by the adaptive and flexible open-structure EFM used. The novelty of this paper lies in the following: (1) the overall concept of inferential sensors with evolving and self-developing structure from the data streams; (2) the new methodology for online automatic selection of input variables that are most relevant for the prediction; (3) the technique to detect automatically a shift in the data pattern using the age of the clusters (and fuzzy rules); (4) the online standardization technique used by the learning procedure of the evolving model; and (5) the application of this innovative approach to several real-life industrial processes from the chemical industry (evolving inferential sensors, namely, eSensors, were used for predicting the chemical properties of different products in The Dow Chemical Company, Freeport, TX). It should be noted, however, that the methodology and conclusions of this paper are valid for the broader area of chemical and process industries in general. The results demonstrate that well-interpretable and with-simple-structure inferential sensors can automatically be designed from the data stream in real time, which predict various process variables of interest. The proposed approach can be used as a basis for the development of a new generation of adaptive and evolving inferential sensors that can address the

  12. Evolvable mathematical models: A new artificial Intelligence paradigm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grouchy, Paul

    We develop a novel Artificial Intelligence paradigm to generate autonomously artificial agents as mathematical models of behaviour. Agent/environment inputs are mapped to agent outputs via equation trees which are evolved in a manner similar to Symbolic Regression in Genetic Programming. Equations are comprised of only the four basic mathematical operators, addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, as well as input and output variables and constants. From these operations, equations can be constructed that approximate any analytic function. These Evolvable Mathematical Models (EMMs) are tested and compared to their Artificial Neural Network (ANN) counterparts on two benchmarking tasks: the double-pole balancing without velocity information benchmark and the challenging discrete Double-T Maze experiments with homing. The results from these experiments show that EMMs are capable of solving tasks typically solved by ANNs, and that they have the ability to produce agents that demonstrate learning behaviours. To further explore the capabilities of EMMs, as well as to investigate the evolutionary origins of communication, we develop NoiseWorld, an Artificial Life simulation in which interagent communication emerges and evolves from initially noncommunicating EMM-based agents. Agents develop the capability to transmit their x and y position information over a one-dimensional channel via a complex, dialogue-based communication scheme. These evolved communication schemes are analyzed and their evolutionary trajectories examined, yielding significant insight into the emergence and subsequent evolution of cooperative communication. Evolved agents from NoiseWorld are successfully transferred onto physical robots, demonstrating the transferability of EMM-based AIs from simulation into physical reality.

  13. Non-Canonical Roles of Dengue Virus Non-Structural Proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julianna D. Zeidler

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The Flaviviridae family comprises a number of human pathogens, which, although sharing structural and functional features, cause diseases with very different outcomes. This can be explained by the plurality of functions exerted by the few proteins coded by viral genomes, with some of these functions shared among members of a same family, but others being unique for each virus species. These non-canonical functions probably have evolved independently and may serve as the base to the development of specific therapies for each of those diseases. Here it is discussed what is currently known about the non-canonical roles of dengue virus (DENV non-structural proteins (NSPs, which may account for some of the effects specifically observed in DENV infection, but not in other members of the Flaviviridae family. This review explores how DENV NSPs contributes to the physiopathology of dengue, evasion from host immunity, metabolic changes, and redistribution of cellular components during infection.

  14. Protein phosphorylation in bcterial signaling and regulation

    KAUST Repository

    Mijakovic, Ivan

    2016-01-26

    In 2003, it was demonstrated for the first time that bacteria possess protein-tyrosine kinases (BY-kinases), capable of phosphorylating other cellular proteins and regulating their activity. It soon became apparent that these kinases phosphorylate a number of protein substrates, involved in different cellular processes. More recently, we found out that BY-kinases can be activated by several distinct protein interactants, and are capable of engaging in cross-phosphorylation with other kinases. Evolutionary studies based on genome comparison indicate that BY-kinases exist only in bacteria. They are non-essential (present in about 40% bacterial genomes), and their knockouts lead to pleiotropic phenotypes, since they phosphorylate many substrates. Surprisingly, BY-kinase genes accumulate mutations at an increased rate (non-synonymous substitution rate significantly higher than other bacterial genes). One direct consequence of this phenomenon is no detectable co-evolution between kinases and their substrates. Their promiscuity towards substrates thus seems to be “hard-wired”, but why would bacteria maintain such promiscuous regulatory devices? One explanation is the maintenance of BY-kinases as rapidly evolving regulators, which can readily adopt new substrates when environmental changes impose selective pressure for quick evolution of new regulatory modules. Their role is clearly not to act as master regulators, dedicated to triggering a single response, but they might rather be employed to contribute to fine-tuning and improving robustness of various cellular responses. This unique feature makes BY-kinases a potentially useful tool in synthetic biology. While other bacterial kinases are very specific and their signaling pathways insulated, BY-kinase can relatively easily be engineered to adopt new substrates and control new biosynthetic processes. Since they are absent in humans, and regulate some key functions in pathogenic bacteria, they are also very promising

  15. [Unique properties of highly radioresistant bacteria].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romanovskaia, V A; Rokitko, P V; Malashenko, Iu R

    2000-01-01

    In connection with the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant (ChNPP) accident and the negative ecological after-effects for biota in this zone the interest has arisen to radioresistant bacteria, as to the most dynamic model of the given ecosystem, and to mechanisms which provide resistance of bacteria to ionizing radiation. The analysis of published data has shown that the radioresistant bacteria are not interrelated taxonomically and phylogenetically. The extreme radioresistant bacteria are represented by the Deinococcus species, which form a group phylogenetically close to the line Thermus-Meiothermus. Other radioresistant bacteria are the representatives of the genera Rubrobacter, Methylobacterium, Kocuria, Bacillus and some archebacteria. Data on natural habitats, of radioresistant bacteria are not numerous. In a number of cases it is difficult to distinguish their natural habitats, as they were isolated from the samples which were previously exposed to X-ray or gamma-irradiation, or from the ecosystems with the naturally raised radioactivity. To understand the strategy of survival of radioresistant bacteria, we briefly reviewed the mechanism of action of various species of radiation on cells and macromolecules; physiological signs of the cell damage caused by radiation; mechanisms eliminating (repairing) these damages. More details on mechanisms of the DNA repair in D. radiodurans are described. The extreme resistance of D. radiodurans to the DNA damaging factors is defined by 1) repair mechanisms which fundamentally differ from those in other procaryotes; 2) ability to increase the efficiency of a standard set of the DNA repairing proteins. Literary and own data on the effect of radiation on survival of various groups of bacteria in natural ecosystems are summarized. The ecological consequences of the ChNPP accident for soil bacteria in this region were estimated. The reduction of the number of soil bacteria and recession of microbial diversity under the effect of

  16. Genome-Wide Analysis in Three Fusarium Pathogens Identifies Rapidly Evolving Chromosomes and Genes Associated with Pathogenicity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sperschneider, Jana; Gardiner, Donald M.; Thatcher, Louise F.; Lyons, Rebecca; Singh, Karam B.; Manners, John M.; Taylor, Jennifer M.

    2015-01-01

    Pathogens and hosts are in an ongoing arms race and genes involved in host–pathogen interactions are likely to undergo diversifying selection. Fusarium plant pathogens have evolved diverse infection strategies, but how they interact with their hosts in the biotrophic infection stage remains puzzling. To address this, we analyzed the genomes of three Fusarium plant pathogens for genes that are under diversifying selection. We found a two-speed genome structure both on the chromosome and gene group level. Diversifying selection acts strongly on the dispensable chromosomes in Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici and on distinct core chromosome regions in Fusarium graminearum, all of which have associations with virulence. Members of two gene groups evolve rapidly, namely those that encode proteins with an N-terminal [SG]-P-C-[KR]-P sequence motif and proteins that are conserved predominantly in pathogens. Specifically, 29 F. graminearum genes are rapidly evolving, in planta induced and encode secreted proteins, strongly pointing toward effector function. In summary, diversifying selection in Fusarium is strongly reflected as genomic footprints and can be used to predict a small gene set likely to be involved in host–pathogen interactions for experimental verification. PMID:25994930

  17. Two Galaxies for a Unique Event

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-04-01

    To celebrate the 100 Hours of Astronomy, ESO is sharing two stunning images of unusual galaxies, both belonging to the Sculptor group of galaxies. The images, obtained at two of ESO's observatories at La Silla and Paranal in Chile, illustrate the beauty of astronomy. ESO PR Photo 14a/09 Irregular Galaxy NGC 55 ESO PR Photo 14b/09 Spiral Galaxy NGC 7793 As part of the International Year of Astronomy 2009 Cornerstone project, 100 Hours of Astronomy, the ambitious "Around the World in 80 Telescopes" event is a unique live webcast over 24 hours, following night and day around the globe to some of the most advanced observatories on and off the planet. To provide a long-lasting memory of this amazing world tour, observatories worldwide are revealing wonderful, and previously unseen, astronomical images. For its part, ESO is releasing outstanding pictures of two galaxies, observed with telescopes at the La Silla and Paranal observatories. The first of these depicts the irregular galaxy NGC 55, a member of the prominent Sculptor group of galaxies in the southern constellation of Sculptor. The galaxy is about 70 000 light-years across, that is, a little bit smaller than our own Milky Way. NGC 55 actually resembles more our galactic neighbour, the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), although the LMC is seen face-on, whilst NGC 55 is edge-on. By studying about 20 planetary nebulae in this image, a team of astronomers found that NGC 55 is located about 7.5 million light-years away. They also found that the galaxy might be forming a bound pair with the gorgeous spiral galaxy NGC 300 . Planetary nebulae are the final blooming of Sun-like stars before their retirement as white dwarfs. This striking image of NGC 55, obtained with the Wide Field Imager on the 2.2-metre MPG/ESO telescope at La Silla, is dusted with a flurry of reddish nebulae, created by young, hot massive stars. Some of the more extended ones are not unlike those seen in the LMC, such as the Tarantula Nebula. The quality

  18. ROSAT Discovers Unique, Distant Cluster of Galaxies

    Science.gov (United States)

    1995-06-01

    Brightest X-ray Cluster Acts as Strong Gravitational Lens Based on exciting new data obtained with the ROSAT X-ray satellite and a ground-based telescope at the ESO La Silla Observatory, a team of European astronomers [2] has just discovered a very distant cluster of galaxies with unique properties. It emits the strongest X-ray emission of any cluster ever observed by ROSAT and is accompanied by two extraordinarily luminous arcs that represent the gravitationally deflected images of even more distant objects. The combination of these unusual characteristics makes this cluster, now known as RXJ1347.5-1145, a most interesting object for further cosmological studies. DISCOVERY AND FOLLOW-UP OBSERVATIONS This strange cluster of galaxies was discovered during the All Sky Survey with the ROSAT X-ray satellite as a moderately intense X-ray source in the constellation of Virgo. It could not be identified with any already known object and additional ground-based observations were therefore soon after performed with the Max-Planck-Society/ESO 2.2-metre telescope at the La Silla observatory in Chile. These observations took place within a large--scale redshift survey of X-ray clusters of galaxies detected by the ROSAT All Sky Survey, a so-called ``ESO Key Programme'' led by astronomers from the Max-Planck-Institut fur Extraterrestrische Physik and the Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera. The main aim of this programme is to identify cluster X-ray sources, to determine the distance to the X-ray emitting clusters and to investigate their overall properties. These observations permitted to measure the redshift of the RXJ1347.5-1145 cluster as z = 0.45, i.e. it moves away from us with a velocity (about 106,000 km/sec) equal to about one-third of the velocity of light. This is an effect of the general expansion of the universe and it allows to determine the distance as about 5,000 million light-years (assuming a Hubble constant of 75 km/sec/Mpc). In other words, we see these

  19. Analyses of critical target cell responses during preclinical phases of evolving chronic radiation-induced myeloproliferative disease-exploitation of a unique canine model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Seed, T.M.; Kaspar, L.V.; Tolle, D.V.; Fritz, T.E.; Frazier, M.E.

    1988-01-01

    This document briefly summarizes and highlights ongoing studies on the cellular and molecular processes involved in the induction and progression of myeloid leukemia in dogs chronically exposed to low daily doses of wholebody gamma irradiation. Under such conditions, select groups of dogs exhibit extremely high frequencies of myeloproliferative disease (MPD) (i.e., /congruent/50%) of which myeloid leukemia is most prominent. 2 figs

  20. Analyses of critical target cell responses during preclinical phases of evolving chronic radiation-induced myeloproliferative disease-exploitation of a unique canine model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Seed, T.M.; Kaspar, L.V.; Tolle, D.V.; Fritz, T.E.; Frazier, M.E.

    1988-01-01

    This document briefly summarizes and highlights ongoing studies on the cellular and molecular processes involved in the induction and progression of myeloid leukemia in dogs chronically exposed to low daily doses of wholebody gamma irradiation. Under such conditions, select groups of dogs exhibit extremely high frequencies of myeloproliferative disease (MPD) (i.e., /congruent/50%) of which myeloid leukemia is most prominent. 2 figs.

  1. DiGIR1 and NaGIR1: naturally occurring group I-like ribozymes with unique core organization and evolved biological role

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johansen, Steinar; Einvik, Christer; Nielsen, Henrik

    2002-01-01

    introns (twin-ribozyme introns) in distantly related organisms. The Didymium GIR1 (DiGIR1) and Naegleria GIR1 (NaGIR1) share fundamental features in structural organization and reactivity, and display significant differences when compared to the related group I splicing ribozymes. GIR1 lacks...

  2. Unique natural exopolysaccharides for biomimetic protective effect against urban pollution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borel, Magali; Lamarque, Elisabeth; Loing, Estelle

    Through natural selection, living organisms have evolved well-adapted survival strategies over time. The shallow salt waters of Moorea lagoon are the site of accumulation of microbial mats called "Kopara," in the native Polynesian language. This unique ecosystem is rich in film-forming exopolysaccharides (EPSs) secreted by microorganisms within the biofilm, as a mean to protect themselves from environmental stress (strong ultraviolet [UV], pH, salinity … ). Using blue biotechnology, a manufacturing process was developed to obtain an EPS with skin benefits. The active ingredient (EPS-229) protects against urban pollution, including free radicals, heavy metals, hydrocarbons, and PM 2.5 (particulate matter with a size lower than 2.5 μm). The anti-lipid peroxidation action of EPS-229 was studied in an in vitro UVB-irradiated keratinocyte culture model, using lipophilic fluorescent probe. The chelating properties of EPS-229 were evaluated in tubo in the presence of cadmium and lead. The protective effect of EPS-229 on pollution-exposed skin explants was investigated through quantification of released malondialdehyde (MDA) and histological observation of skin morphology using optical microscopy. Clinical evaluation of the protective and cleansing efficacy of a water solution containing EPS-229 (0.02% and 0.01% w/v, respectively) was performed, against placebo, on a panel of 18 volunteers. For these studies, the forearms of volunteers were treated with EPS-229 before (anti-adhesion affect) or after (cleansing effect) application of PM 2.5 (iron particles of 1 μm). The presence of skin-adherent particles was observed and quantified by image analysis, using specific digital masks. In vitro , EPS-229 significantly protected keratinocyte cell membranes from lipid peroxidation. A decrease of 28% was achieved when a concentration of 0.001% w/v EPS-229 was applied to the cell culture. In tubo , EPS-229 also presented strong chelating properties. Maximal adsorption was

  3. Novel criteria of uniqueness for signal reconstruction from phase

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ma, C.

    1991-01-01

    An approach for ascertaining whether a signal is uniquely determined by its Fourier transform phase is proposed. It is shown that uniqueness corresponds to the nonsingularity of a matrix which can be formed from the finite-length real sequence. The criterion of uniqueness for reconstructing a

  4. Enhancing the productivity of soluble green fluorescent protein ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Protein sequences might have been evolved against different environmental pressures, which results in non-optimum properties in their stability, activity and folding efficiency. Directed evolution and consensus-based engineering of proteins are the protein engineering principles for the re-evolution of such natural proteins ...

  5. Comparative Genomics Identifies Epidermal Proteins Associated with the Evolution of the Turtle Shell.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holthaus, Karin Brigit; Strasser, Bettina; Sipos, Wolfgang; Schmidt, Heiko A; Mlitz, Veronika; Sukseree, Supawadee; Weissenbacher, Anton; Tschachler, Erwin; Alibardi, Lorenzo; Eckhart, Leopold

    2016-03-01

    The evolution of reptiles, birds, and mammals was associated with the origin of unique integumentary structures. Studies on lizards, chicken, and humans have suggested that the evolution of major structural proteins of the outermost, cornified layers of the epidermis was driven by the diversification of a gene cluster called Epidermal Differentiation Complex (EDC). Turtles have evolved unique defense mechanisms that depend on mechanically resilient modifications of the epidermis. To investigate whether the evolution of the integument in these reptiles was associated with specific adaptations of the sequences and expression patterns of EDC-related genes, we utilized newly available genome sequences to determine the epidermal differentiation gene complement of turtles. The EDC of the western painted turtle (Chrysemys picta bellii) comprises more than 100 genes, including at least 48 genes that encode proteins referred to as beta-keratins or corneous beta-proteins. Several EDC proteins have evolved cysteine/proline contents beyond 50% of total amino acid residues. Comparative genomics suggests that distinct subfamilies of EDC genes have been expanded and partly translocated to loci outside of the EDC in turtles. Gene expression analysis in the European pond turtle (Emys orbicularis) showed that EDC genes are differentially expressed in the skin of the various body sites and that a subset of beta-keratin genes within the EDC as well as those located outside of the EDC are expressed predominantly in the shell. Our findings give strong support to the hypothesis that the evolutionary innovation of the turtle shell involved specific molecular adaptations of epidermal differentiation. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  6. A unique charge-coupled device/xenon arc lamp based imaging system for the accurate detection and quantitation of multicolour fluorescence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spibey, C A; Jackson, P; Herick, K

    2001-03-01

    In recent years the use of fluorescent dyes in biological applications has dramatically increased. The continual improvement in the capabilities of these fluorescent dyes demands increasingly sensitive detection systems that provide accurate quantitation over a wide linear dynamic range. In the field of proteomics, the detection, quantitation and identification of very low abundance proteins are of extreme importance in understanding cellular processes. Therefore, the instrumentation used to acquire an image of such samples, for spot picking and identification by mass spectrometry, must be sensitive enough to be able, not only, to maximise the sensitivity and dynamic range of the staining dyes but, as importantly, adapt to the ever changing portfolio of fluorescent dyes as they become available. Just as the available fluorescent probes are improving and evolving so are the users application requirements. Therefore, the instrumentation chosen must be flexible to address and adapt to those changing needs. As a result, a highly competitive market for the supply and production of such dyes and the instrumentation for their detection and quantitation have emerged. The instrumentation currently available is based on either laser/photomultiplier tube (PMT) scanning or lamp/charge-coupled device (CCD) based mechanisms. This review briefly discusses the advantages and disadvantages of both System types for fluorescence imaging, gives a technical overview of CCD technology and describes in detail a unique xenon/are lamp CCD based instrument, from PerkinElmer Life Sciences. The Wallac-1442 ARTHUR is unique in its ability to scan both large areas at high resolution and give accurate selectable excitation over the whole of the UV/visible range. It operates by filtering both the excitation and emission wavelengths, providing optimal and accurate measurement and quantitation of virtually any available dye and allows excellent spectral resolution between different fluorophores

  7. Clustering impact regime with shocks in freely evolving granular gas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isobe, Masaharu

    2017-06-01

    A freely cooling granular gas without any external force evolves from the initial homogeneous state to the inhomogeneous clustering state, at which the energy decay deviates from the Haff's law. The asymptotic behavior of energy in the inelastic hard sphere model have been predicted by several theories, which are based on the mode coupling theory or extension of inelastic hard rods gas. In this study, we revisited the clustering regime of freely evolving granular gas via large-scale molecular dynamics simulation with up to 16.7 million inelastic hard disks. We found novel regime regarding on collisions between "clusters" spontaneously appearing after clustering regime, which can only be identified more than a few million particles system. The volumetric dilatation pattern of semicircular shape originated from density shock propagation are well characterized on the appearing of "cluster impact" during the aggregation process of clusters.

  8. Self-regulating and self-evolving particle swarm optimizer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Hui-Min; Qiao, Zhao-Wei; Xia, Chang-Liang; Li, Liang-Yu

    2015-01-01

    In this article, a novel self-regulating and self-evolving particle swarm optimizer (SSPSO) is proposed. Learning from the idea of direction reversal, self-regulating behaviour is a modified position update rule for particles, according to which the algorithm improves the best position to accelerate convergence in situations where the traditional update rule does not work. Borrowing the idea of mutation from evolutionary computation, self-evolving behaviour acts on the current best particle in the swarm to prevent the algorithm from prematurely converging. The performance of SSPSO and four other improved particle swarm optimizers is numerically evaluated by unimodal, multimodal and rotated multimodal benchmark functions. The effectiveness of SSPSO in solving real-world problems is shown by the magnetic optimization of a Halbach-based permanent magnet machine. The results show that SSPSO has good convergence performance and high reliability, and is well matched to actual problems.

  9. AUTOMOTIVE APPLICATIONS OF EVOLVING TAKAGI-SUGENO-KANG FUZZY MODELS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Radu-Emil Precup

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents theoretical and application results concerning the development of evolving Takagi-Sugeno-Kang fuzzy models for two dynamic systems, which will be viewed as controlled processes, in the field of automotive applications. The two dynamic systems models are nonlinear dynamics of the longitudinal slip in the Anti-lock Braking Systems (ABS and the vehicle speed in vehicles with the Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT systems. The evolving Takagi-Sugeno-Kang fuzzy models are obtained as discrete-time fuzzy models by incremental online identification algorithms. The fuzzy models are validated against experimental results in the case of the ABS and the first principles simulation results in the case of the vehicle with the CVT.

  10. Design of the tool for periodic not evolvent profiles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anisimov Roman

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The new approach to profiling of the tool for processing of parts with periodic not evolvent profiles are considered in the article The discriminatory analysis of periodic profiles including repetition of profile both in the plane of perpendicular axis of part, and in the plane of passing along part of axis is offered. In the basis of the offered profiling method the idea of space shaping by rated surface of product of tool surface lies. The big advantage of the offered approach in profiling is its combination with the analysis of parameters of process of engineering work. It allows to predict the accuracy and surface quality of product with not evolvent periodic profile. While using the offered approach the pinion cutter for processing of wheels with internal triangular teeths and mill for processing of the screw of the counter of consumption of liquid, complex profile of which consists of several formings, have been received

  11. Real-time evolvable pulse shaper for radiation measurements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lanchares, Juan, E-mail: julandan@dacya.ucm.es [Facultad de Informática, Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), C/Prof. José García Santesmases s/n, 28040 Madrid (Spain); Garnica, Oscar, E-mail: ogarnica@dacya.ucm.es [Facultad de Informática, Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), C/Prof. José García Santesmases s/n, 28040 Madrid (Spain); Risco-Martín, José L., E-mail: jlrisco@dacya.ucm.es [Facultad de Informática, Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), C/Prof. José García Santesmases s/n, 28040 Madrid (Spain); Ignacio Hidalgo, J., E-mail: hidalgo@dacya.ucm.es [Facultad de Informática, Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), C/Prof. José García Santesmases s/n, 28040 Madrid (Spain); Regadío, Alberto, E-mail: alberto.regadio@insa.es [Área de Tecnologías Electrónicas, Instituto Nacional de Técnica Aeroespacial (INTA), 28850 Torrejón de Ardoz, Madrid (Spain)

    2013-11-01

    In the last two decades, recursive algorithms for real-time digital pulse shaping in pulse height measurements have been developed and published in number of articles and textbooks. All these algorithms try to synthesize in real time optimum or near optimum shapes in the presence of noise. Even though some of these shapers can be considered effective designs, some side effects like aging cannot be ignored. We may observe that after sensors degradation, the signal obtained is not valid. In this regard, we present in this paper a novel technique that, based on evolvable hardware concepts, is able to evolve the degenerated shaper into a new design with better performance than the original one under the new sensor features.

  12. Programming adaptive control to evolve increased metabolite production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chou, Howard H; Keasling, Jay D

    2013-01-01

    The complexity inherent in biological systems challenges efforts to rationally engineer novel phenotypes, especially those not amenable to high-throughput screens and selections. In nature, increased mutation rates generate diversity in a population that can lead to the evolution of new phenotypes. Here we construct an adaptive control system that increases the mutation rate in order to generate diversity in the population, and decreases the mutation rate as the concentration of a target metabolite increases. This system is called feedback-regulated evolution of phenotype (FREP), and is implemented with a sensor to gauge the concentration of a metabolite and an actuator to alter the mutation rate. To evolve certain novel traits that have no known natural sensors, we develop a framework to assemble synthetic transcription factors using metabolic enzymes and construct four different sensors that recognize isopentenyl diphosphate in bacteria and yeast. We verify FREP by evolving increased tyrosine and isoprenoid production.

  13. Evolving approaches to the ethical management of genomic data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McEwen, Jean E; Boyer, Joy T; Sun, Kathie Y

    2013-06-01

    The ethical landscape in the field of genomics is rapidly shifting. Plummeting sequencing costs, along with ongoing advances in bioinformatics, now make it possible to generate an enormous volume of genomic data about vast numbers of people. The informational richness, complexity, and frequently uncertain meaning of these data, coupled with evolving norms surrounding the sharing of data and samples and persistent privacy concerns, have generated a range of approaches to the ethical management of genomic information. As calls increase for the expanded use of broad or even open consent, and as controversy grows about how best to handle incidental genomic findings, these approaches, informed by normative analysis and empirical data, will continue to evolve alongside the science. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  14. Evolving Robot Controllers for Structured Environments Through Environment Decomposition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moreno, Rodrigo; Faiña, Andres; Støy, Kasper

    2015-01-01

    In this paper we aim to develop a controller that allows a robot to traverse an structured environment. The approach we use is to decompose the environment into simple sub-environments that we use as basis for evolving the controller. Specifically, we decompose a narrow corridor environment...... environments and that the order in which the decomposed sub-environments are presented in sequence impacts the performance of the evolutionary algorithm....

  15. The Evolving Importance of Banks and Securities Markets

    OpenAIRE

    Demirguc-Kunt, Asli; Feyen, Erik; Levine, Ross

    2011-01-01

    The roles of banks and securities markets evolve during the process of economic development. As countries develop economically, (1) the size of both banks and securities markets increases relative to the size of the economy, (2) the association between an increase in economic output and an increase in bank development becomes smaller, and (3) the association between an increase in economic output and an increase in securities market development becomes larger. These findings are consistent wi...

  16. A novel evolving scale-free model with tunable attractiveness

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xuan, Liu; Tian-Qi, Liu; Xing-Yuan, Li; Hao, Wang

    2010-01-01

    In this paper, a new evolving model with tunable attractiveness is presented. Based on the Barabasi–Albert (BA) model, we introduce the attractiveness of node which can change with node degree. Using the mean-field theory, we obtain the analytical expression of power-law degree distribution with the exponent γ in (3, ∞). The new model is more homogeneous and has a lower clustering coefficient and bigger average path length than the BA model. (general)

  17. india's northward drift and collision with asia: evolving faunal response

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    INDIA'S NORTHWARD DRIFT AND COLLISION WITH ASIA: EVOLVING FAUNAL RESPONSE · Slide 2 · Slide 3 · Slide 4 · Slide 5 · Slide 6 · Slide 7 · Slide 8 · Slide 9 · Slide 10 · Slide 11 · Slide 12 · Slide 13 · Slide 14 · Slide 15 · Slide 16 · Slide 17 · Slide 18 · Slide 19 · Slide 20 · Slide 21 · Slide 22 · Slide 23 · Slide 24.

  18. Reconstructing the Morphology of an Evolving Coronal Mass Ejection

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    694, 707 Wood, B. E., Howard, R. A ., Thernisien, A ., Plunkett, S. P., & Socker, D. G. 2009b, Sol. Phys., 259, 163 Wood, B. E., Karovska , M., Chen, J...Reconstructing the Morphology of an Evolving Coronal Mass Ejection B. E. Wood, R. A . Howard, D. G. Socker Naval Research Laboratory, Space Science...mission, we empirically reconstruct the time-dependent three-dimensional morphology of a coronal mass ejection (CME) from 2008 June 1, which exhibits

  19. Analysis of motility in multicellular Chlamydomonas reinhardtii evolved under predation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Margrethe Boyd

    Full Text Available The advent of multicellularity was a watershed event in the history of life, yet the transition from unicellularity to multicellularity is not well understood. Multicellularity opens up opportunities for innovations in intercellular communication, cooperation, and specialization, which can provide selective advantages under certain ecological conditions. The unicellular alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii has never had a multicellular ancestor yet it is closely related to the volvocine algae, a clade containing taxa that range from simple unicells to large, specialized multicellular colonies. Simple multicellular structures have been observed to evolve in C. reinhardtii in response to predation or to settling rate-based selection. Structures formed in response to predation consist of individual cells confined within a shared transparent extracellular matrix. Evolved isolates form such structures obligately under culture conditions in which their wild type ancestors do not, indicating that newly-evolved multicellularity is heritable. C. reinhardtii is capable of photosynthesis, and possesses an eyespot and two flagella with which it moves towards or away from light in order to optimize input of radiant energy. Motility contributes to C. reinhardtii fitness because it allows cells or colonies to achieve this optimum. Utilizing phototaxis to assay motility, we determined that newly evolved multicellular strains do not exhibit significant directional movement, even though the flagellae of their constituent unicells are present and active. In C. reinhardtii the first steps towards multicellularity in response to predation appear to result in a trade-off between motility and differential survivorship, a trade-off that must be overcome by further genetic change to ensure long-term success of the new multicellular organism.

  20. The evolving role of information technology in internal auditing

    OpenAIRE

    2015-01-01

    M.Com. (Computer Auditing) Modern organizations are increasingly dependent on information technology (IT) for various reasons: to enhance their operational efficiency, reduce costs or even attain a competitive advantage. The role of information technology in the organization continues to evolve and this has an impact for the internal audit functions that serve these organizations. The study investigated whether the King III report, ISACA standards and IIA standards assist the internal audi...

  1. The evolving role of paramedics - a NICE problem to have?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eaton, Georgette; Mahtani, Kamal; Catterall, Matt

    2018-07-01

    This short essay supports the growing role of paramedics in the clinical and academic workforce. We present a commentary of recent draft consultations by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence in England that set out how the role of paramedics may be evolving to assist with the changing demands on the clinical workforce. Using these consultations as a basis, we extend their recommendations and suggest that the profession should also lead the academically driven evaluation of these new roles.

  2. A search for radio emission from exoplanets around evolved stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Gorman, E.; Coughlan, C. P.; Vlemmings, W.; Varenius, E.; Sirothia, S.; Ray, T. P.; Olofsson, H.

    2018-04-01

    The majority of searches for radio emission from exoplanets have to date focused on short period planets, i.e., the so-called hot Jupiter type planets. However, these planets are likely to be tidally locked to their host stars and may not generate sufficiently strong magnetic fields to emit electron cyclotron maser emission at the low frequencies used in observations (typically ≥150 MHz). In comparison, the large mass-loss rates of evolved stars could enable exoplanets at larger orbital distances to emit detectable radio emission. Here, we first show that the large ionized mass-loss rates of certain evolved stars relative to the solar value could make them detectable with the LOw Frequency ARray (LOFAR) at 150 MHz (λ = 2 m), provided they have surface magnetic field strengths >50 G. We then report radio observations of three long period (>1 au) planets that orbit the evolved stars β Gem, ι Dra, and β UMi using LOFAR at 150 MHz. We do not detect radio emission from any system but place tight 3σ upper limits of 0.98, 0.87, and 0.57 mJy on the flux density at 150 MHz for β Gem, ι Dra, and β UMi, respectively. Despite our non-detections these stringent upper limits highlight the potential of LOFAR as a tool to search for exoplanetary radio emission at meter wavelengths.

  3. Biomimetic molecular design tools that learn, evolve, and adapt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David A Winkler

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available A dominant hallmark of living systems is their ability to adapt to changes in the environment by learning and evolving. Nature does this so superbly that intensive research efforts are now attempting to mimic biological processes. Initially this biomimicry involved developing synthetic methods to generate complex bioactive natural products. Recent work is attempting to understand how molecular machines operate so their principles can be copied, and learning how to employ biomimetic evolution and learning methods to solve complex problems in science, medicine and engineering. Automation, robotics, artificial intelligence, and evolutionary algorithms are now converging to generate what might broadly be called in silico-based adaptive evolution of materials. These methods are being applied to organic chemistry to systematize reactions, create synthesis robots to carry out unit operations, and to devise closed loop flow self-optimizing chemical synthesis systems. Most scientific innovations and technologies pass through the well-known “S curve”, with slow beginning, an almost exponential growth in capability, and a stable applications period. Adaptive, evolving, machine learning-based molecular design and optimization methods are approaching the period of very rapid growth and their impact is already being described as potentially disruptive. This paper describes new developments in biomimetic adaptive, evolving, learning computational molecular design methods and their potential impacts in chemistry, engineering, and medicine.

  4. FY1995 evolvable hardware chip; 1995 nendo shinkasuru hardware chip

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1997-03-01

    This project aims at the development of 'Evolvable Hardware' (EHW) which can adapt its hardware structure to the environment to attain better hardware performance, under the control of genetic algorithms. EHW is a key technology to explore the new application area requiring real-time performance and on-line adaptation. 1. Development of EHW-LSI for function level hardware evolution, which includes 15 DSPs in one chip. 2. Application of the EHW to the practical industrial applications such as data compression, ATM control, digital mobile communication. 3. Two patents : (1) the architecture and the processing method for programmable EHW-LSI. (2) The method of data compression for loss-less data, using EHW. 4. The first international conference for evolvable hardware was held by authors: Intl. Conf. on Evolvable Systems (ICES96). It was determined at ICES96 that ICES will be held every two years between Japan and Europe. So the new society has been established by us. (NEDO)

  5. Biomimetic molecular design tools that learn, evolve, and adapt

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-01-01

    A dominant hallmark of living systems is their ability to adapt to changes in the environment by learning and evolving. Nature does this so superbly that intensive research efforts are now attempting to mimic biological processes. Initially this biomimicry involved developing synthetic methods to generate complex bioactive natural products. Recent work is attempting to understand how molecular machines operate so their principles can be copied, and learning how to employ biomimetic evolution and learning methods to solve complex problems in science, medicine and engineering. Automation, robotics, artificial intelligence, and evolutionary algorithms are now converging to generate what might broadly be called in silico-based adaptive evolution of materials. These methods are being applied to organic chemistry to systematize reactions, create synthesis robots to carry out unit operations, and to devise closed loop flow self-optimizing chemical synthesis systems. Most scientific innovations and technologies pass through the well-known “S curve”, with slow beginning, an almost exponential growth in capability, and a stable applications period. Adaptive, evolving, machine learning-based molecular design and optimization methods are approaching the period of very rapid growth and their impact is already being described as potentially disruptive. This paper describes new developments in biomimetic adaptive, evolving, learning computational molecular design methods and their potential impacts in chemistry, engineering, and medicine. PMID:28694872

  6. Social networks: Evolving graphs with memory dependent edges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grindrod, Peter; Parsons, Mark

    2011-10-01

    The plethora of digital communication technologies, and their mass take up, has resulted in a wealth of interest in social network data collection and analysis in recent years. Within many such networks the interactions are transient: thus those networks evolve over time. In this paper we introduce a class of models for such networks using evolving graphs with memory dependent edges, which may appear and disappear according to their recent history. We consider time discrete and time continuous variants of the model. We consider the long term asymptotic behaviour as a function of parameters controlling the memory dependence. In particular we show that such networks may continue evolving forever, or else may quench and become static (containing immortal and/or extinct edges). This depends on the existence or otherwise of certain infinite products and series involving age dependent model parameters. We show how to differentiate between the alternatives based on a finite set of observations. To test these ideas we show how model parameters may be calibrated based on limited samples of time dependent data, and we apply these concepts to three real networks: summary data on mobile phone use from a developing region; online social-business network data from China; and disaggregated mobile phone communications data from a reality mining experiment in the US. In each case we show that there is evidence for memory dependent dynamics, such as that embodied within the class of models proposed here.

  7. Risk factors which cause senile cataract evolvement: outline

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E.V. Bragin

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Examination of natural ageing processes including those caused by multiple external factors has been attracting re-searchers' attention over the last years. Senile cataract is a multi-factor disease. Expenditure on cataract surgery remain one of the greatest expenses items in public health care. Age is a basic factor which causes senile cataract. Morbidity with cataract doubles each 10 years of life. This outline considers some literature sources which describe research results on influence exerted on cataract evolvement by such risk factors as age, sex, race, smoking, alcohol intake, pancreatic diabetes, intake of certain medications, a number of environmental factors including ultraviolet and ionizing radiation. mane of these factors are shown to increase or reduce senile cataract risk; there are conflicting data on certain factors. The outline also contains quantitative characteristics of cataract risks which are given via odds relation and evolve due to age parameters impacts, alcohol intake, ionizing radiation, etc. The authors also state that still there is no answer to the question whether dose-effect relationship for cataract evolvement is a threshold or non-threshold.

  8. Higher rates of sex evolve in spatially heterogeneous environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becks, Lutz; Agrawal, Aneil F

    2010-11-04

    The evolution and maintenance of sexual reproduction has puzzled biologists for decades. Although this field is rich in hypotheses, experimental evidence is scarce. Some important experiments have demonstrated differences in evolutionary rates between sexual and asexual populations; other experiments have documented evolutionary changes in phenomena related to genetic mixing, such as recombination and selfing. However, direct experiments of the evolution of sex within populations are extremely rare (but see ref. 12). Here we use the rotifer, Brachionus calyciflorus, which is capable of both sexual and asexual reproduction, to test recent theory predicting that there is more opportunity for sex to evolve in spatially heterogeneous environments. Replicated experimental populations of rotifers were maintained in homogeneous environments, composed of either high- or low-quality food habitats, or in heterogeneous environments that consisted of a mix of the two habitats. For populations maintained in either type of homogeneous environment, the rate of sex evolves rapidly towards zero. In contrast, higher rates of sex evolve in populations experiencing spatially heterogeneous environments. The data indicate that the higher level of sex observed under heterogeneity is not due to sex being less costly or selection against sex being less efficient; rather sex is sufficiently advantageous in heterogeneous environments to overwhelm its inherent costs. Counter to some alternative theories for the evolution of sex, there is no evidence that genetic drift plays any part in the evolution of sex in these populations.

  9. Evolution favors protein mutational robustness in sufficiently large populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Venturelli Ophelia S

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background An important question is whether evolution favors properties such as mutational robustness or evolvability that do not directly benefit any individual, but can influence the course of future evolution. Functionally similar proteins can differ substantially in their robustness to mutations and capacity to evolve new functions, but it has remained unclear whether any of these differences might be due to evolutionary selection for these properties. Results Here we use laboratory experiments to demonstrate that evolution favors protein mutational robustness if the evolving population is sufficiently large. We neutrally evolve cytochrome P450 proteins under identical selection pressures and mutation rates in populations of different sizes, and show that proteins from the larger and thus more polymorphic population tend towards higher mutational robustness. Proteins from the larger population also evolve greater stability, a biophysical property that is known to enhance both mutational robustness and evolvability. The excess mutational robustness and stability is well described by mathematical theory, and can be quantitatively related to the way that the proteins occupy their neutral network. Conclusion Our work is the first experimental demonstration of the general tendency of evolution to favor mutational robustness and protein stability in highly polymorphic populations. We suggest that this phenomenon could contribute to the mutational robustness and evolvability of viruses and bacteria that exist in large populations.

  10. The evolving universe and the origin of life the search for our cosmic roots

    CERN Document Server

    Teerikorpi, Pekka; Lehto, Harry; Chernin, Arthur; Byrd, Gene; Lehto, K

    2008-01-01

    Sir Isaac Newton famously said, regarding his discoveries, "If I have seen further it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants." The Evolving Universe and the Origin of Life describes, complete with fascinating biographical details of the thinkers involved, the ascent to the metaphorical shoulders accomplished by the greatest minds in history. For the first time, a single book can take the reader on a journey through the history of the universe as interpreted by the expanding body of knowledge of humankind. From subatomic particles to the protein chains that form life, and expanding in scale to the entire universe, this book covers the science that explains how we came to be. The Evolving Universe and the Origin of Life contains a great breadth of knowledge, from astronomy to physics, from chemistry to biology. It includes over 350 figures that enhance the comprehension of concepts both basic and advanced, and is a non-technical, easy-to-read text at an introductory college level that is ideal for anyone i...

  11. Heat-induced reorganization of the structure of photosystem II membranes: role of oxygen evolving complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Busheva, Mira; Tzonova, Iren; Stoitchkova, Katerina; Andreeva, Atanaska

    2012-12-05

    The sensitivity of the green plants' photosystem II (PSII) to high temperatures is investigated in PSII enriched membranes and in membranes, from which the oxygen evolving complex is removed. Using steady-state 77 K fluorescence and resonance Raman spectroscopy we analyze the interdependency between the temperature-driven changes in structure and energy distribution in the PSII supercomplex. The results show that the heat treatment induces different reduction of the 77 K fluorescence emission in both types of investigated membranes: (i) an additional considerable decrease of the overall fluorescence emission in Tris-washed membranes as compared to the native membranes; (ii) a transition point at 42°C(,) observed only in native membranes; (iii) a sharp reduction of the PSII core fluorescence in Tris-washed membranes at temperatures higher than 50°C; (iv) a 3 nm red-shift of F700 band's maximum in Tris-washed membranes already at 20°C and its further shift by 1 nm at temperature increase. Both treatments intensified their action by increasing the aggregation and dissociation of the peripheral light harvesting complexes. The oxygen-evolving complex, in addition to its main function to produce O(2), increases the thermal stability of PSII core by strengthening the connection between the core and the peripheral antenna proteins and by keeping their structural integrity. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Evolutionary genomics of archaeal viruses: unique viral genomes in the third domain of life

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Prangishvili, D.; Garrett, R. A.; Koonin, E.

    2006-01-01

    In terms of virion morphology, the known viruses of archaea fall into two distinct classes: viruses of mesophilic and moderately thermophilic Eueryarchaeota closely resemble head-and-tail bacteriophages whereas viruses of hyperthermophilic Crenarchaeota show a variety of unique morphotypes...... of bacteriophages. The proteins encoded by the genes belonging to this pool include predicted transcription regulators, ATPases implicated in viral DNA replication and packaging, enzymes of DNA precursor metabolism, RNA modification enzymes, and glycosylases. In addition, each of the crenarchaeal viruses encodes...

  13. Measurement of MMP-9 and -12 degraded elastin (ELM) provides unique information on lung tissue degradation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skjøt-Arkil, Helene; Clausen, Rikke E; Nguyen, Quoc Hai Trieu

    2012-01-01

    Elastin is an essential component of selected connective tissues that provides a unique physiological elasticity. Elastin may be considered a signature protein of lungs where matrix metalloprotease (MMP) -9-and -12, may be considered the signature proteases of the macrophages, which in part...... are responsible for tissue damage during disease progression. Thus, we hypothesized that a MMP-9/-12 generated fragment of elastin may be a relevant biochemical maker for lung diseases....

  14. Tollip or not Tollip: what are the evolving questions behind it?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Denis Prudencio Luiz

    Full Text Available Tollip plays an important role in the interleukin-1 receptor IL-1R and Toll pathways. As a modulator of the immune pathway, it indirectly controls the amount of antimicrobial peptides. This could indicate a vital step in maintaining animal immune systems and preventing infection. Evolutionary questions are crucial to understanding the conservation and functioning of the biochemical pathways like the Tollip-mediated one. Through an analysis of 36 sequences of the Tollip protein from different animal taxa, downloaded from Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG databank, we inferred diverse evolutionary parameters, such as molecular selection and structure conservation, by analyzing residue by residue, beyond the canonical parameters to this type of study, as maximum likelihood trees. We found that Tollip presented different trends in its evolving history. In primates, the protein is becoming more unstable, just the opposite is observed in the arthropod group. The most interesting finding was the concentration of positively selected residues at amino terminal ends. Some observed topological incongruences in maximum likelihood trees of complete and curated Tollip data sets could be explained through horizontal transfers, evidenced by recombination detection. These results suggest that there is more to be researched and understood about this protein.

  15. Rationally evolving tRNAPyl for efficient incorporation of noncanonical amino acids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Chenguang; Xiong, Hai; Reynolds, Noah M; Söll, Dieter

    2015-12-15

    Genetic encoding of noncanonical amino acids (ncAAs) into proteins is a powerful approach to study protein functions. Pyrrolysyl-tRNA synthetase (PylRS), a polyspecific aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase in wide use, has facilitated incorporation of a large number of different ncAAs into proteins to date. To make this process more efficient, we rationally evolved tRNA(Pyl) to create tRNA(Pyl-opt) with six nucleotide changes. This improved tRNA was tested as substrate for wild-type PylRS as well as three characterized PylRS variants (N(ϵ)-acetyllysyl-tRNA synthetase [AcKRS], 3-iodo-phenylalanyl-tRNA synthetase [IFRS], a broad specific PylRS variant [PylRS-AA]) to incorporate ncAAs at UAG codons in super-folder green fluorescence protein (sfGFP). tRNA(Pyl-opt) facilitated a 5-fold increase in AcK incorporation into two positions of sfGFP simultaneously. In addition, AcK incorporation into two target proteins (Escherichia coli malate dehydrogenase and human histone H3) caused homogenous acetylation at multiple lysine residues in high yield. Using tRNA(Pyl-opt) with PylRS and various PylRS variants facilitated efficient incorporation of six other ncAAs into sfGFP. Kinetic analyses revealed that the mutations in tRNA(Pyl-opt) had no significant effect on the catalytic efficiency and substrate binding of PylRS enzymes. Thus tRNA(Pyl-opt) should be an excellent replacement of wild-type tRNA(Pyl) for future ncAA incorporation by PylRS enzymes. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  16. Evolving role of MeCP2 in Rett syndrome and autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LaSalle, Janine M; Yasui, Dag H

    2009-10-01

    Rett syndrome is an X-linked autism-spectrum disorder caused by mutations in MECP2, encoding methyl CpG-binding protein 2. Since the discovery of MECP2 mutations as the genetic cause of Rett syndrome, the understanding of MeCP2 function has evolved. Although MeCP2 was predicted to be a global transcriptional repressor of methylated promoters, large-scale combined epigenomic approaches of MeCP2 binding, methylation and gene expression have demonstrated that MeCP2 binds preferentially to intergenic and intronic regions, and sparsely methylated promoters of active genes. This review compares the evolution of thought within two ‘classic’ epigenetic mechanisms of parental imprinting and X chromosome inactivation to that of the MeCP2 field, and considers the future relevance of integrated epigenomic databases to understanding autism and Rett syndrome.

  17. Homospermidine synthase, the first pathway-specific enzyme of pyrrolizidine alkaloid biosynthesis, evolved from deoxyhypusine synthase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ober, Dietrich; Hartmann, Thomas

    1999-01-01

    Pyrrolizidine alkaloids are preformed plant defense compounds with sporadic phylogenetic distribution. They are thought to have evolved in response to the selective pressure of herbivory. The first pathway-specific intermediate of these alkaloids is the rare polyamine homospermidine, which is synthesized by homospermidine synthase (HSS). The HSS gene from Senecio vernalis was cloned and shown to be derived from the deoxyhypusine synthase (DHS) gene, which is highly conserved among all eukaryotes and archaebacteria. DHS catalyzes the first step in the activation of translation initiation factor 5A (eIF5A), which is essential for eukaryotic cell proliferation and which acts as a cofactor of the HIV-1 Rev regulatory protein. Sequence comparison provides direct evidence for the evolutionary recruitment of an essential gene of primary metabolism (DHS) for the origin of the committing step (HSS) in the biosynthesis of pyrrolizidine alkaloids. PMID:10611289

  18. A haemolytic syndrome associated with the complete absence of red cell membrane protein 4.2 in two Tunisian siblings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghanem, A; Pothier, B; Marechal, J; Ducluzeau, M T; Morle, L; Alloisio, N; Feo, C; Ben Abdeladhim, A; Fattoum, S; Delaunay, J

    1990-07-01

    We report on the complete absence of protein 4.2 in two Tunisian siblings. The propositus presented with a haemolytic anaemia that evolved in an intermittent fashion until she was cured by splenectomy. Her red cells had a normal morphology, as well as normal deformability upon osmotic gradient ektacytometry. SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis failed to reveal any protein 4.2. Using anti-protein 4.2 polyclonal antibodies. Western blots were also unable to detect protein 4.2. Preparation of inside out vesicles resulted in no detectable loss of ankyrin. The propositus's sister presented with a haemolytic anaemia but had not undergone splenectomy; she showed the same biochemical features. The two cases presented of missing protein 4.2 are the first ones to be described outside the Japanese population. Considered as homozygotes for some defect that must alter the protein 4.2 gene itself, they exemplify a unique syndrome pertaining neither to elliptocytosis nor to spherocytosis, at least not closely. The parents, who are first cousins and whom we regarded as heterozygotes, were clinically and morphologically normal; they had a normal content of protein 4.2. Therefore, the 4.2 (-) haemolytic anaemia appears as entirely recessive.

  19. Evolutions in clinical reasoning assessment: The Evolving Script Concordance Test.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooke, Suzette; Lemay, Jean-François; Beran, Tanya

    2017-08-01

    Script concordance testing (SCT) is a method of assessment of clinical reasoning. We developed a new type of SCT case design, the evolving SCT (E-SCT), whereby the patient's clinical story is "evolving" and with thoughtful integration of new information at each stage, decisions related to clinical decision-making become increasingly clear. We aimed to: (1) determine whether an E-SCT could differentiate clinical reasoning ability among junior residents (JR), senior residents (SR), and pediatricians, (2) evaluate the reliability of an E-SCT, and (3) obtain qualitative feedback from participants to help inform the potential acceptability of the E-SCT. A 12-case E-SCT, embedded within a 24-case pediatric SCT (PaedSCT), was administered to 91 pediatric residents (JR: n = 50; SR: n = 41). A total of 21 pediatricians served on the panel of experts (POE). A one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) was conducted across the levels of experience. Participants' feedback on the E-SCT was obtained with a post-test survey and analyzed using two methods: percentage preference and thematic analysis. Statistical differences existed across levels of training: F = 19.31 (df = 2); p decision-making process. The E-SCT demonstrated very good reliability and was effective in distinguishing clinical reasoning ability across three levels of experience. Participants found the E-SCT engaging and representative of real-life clinical reasoning and decision-making processes. We suggest that further refinement and utilization of the evolving style case will enhance SCT as a robust, engaging, and relevant method for the assessment of clinical reasoning.

  20. A Change Impact Analysis to Characterize Evolving Program Behaviors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rungta, Neha Shyam; Person, Suzette; Branchaud, Joshua

    2012-01-01

    Change impact analysis techniques estimate the potential effects of changes made to software. Directed Incremental Symbolic Execution (DiSE) is an intraprocedural technique for characterizing the impact of software changes on program behaviors. DiSE first estimates the impact of the changes on the source code using program slicing techniques, and then uses the impact sets to guide symbolic execution to generate path conditions that characterize impacted program behaviors. DiSE, however, cannot reason about the flow of impact between methods and will fail to generate path conditions for certain impacted program behaviors. In this work, we present iDiSE, an extension to DiSE that performs an interprocedural analysis. iDiSE combines static and dynamic calling context information to efficiently generate impacted program behaviors across calling contexts. Information about impacted program behaviors is useful for testing, verification, and debugging of evolving programs. We present a case-study of our implementation of the iDiSE algorithm to demonstrate its efficiency at computing impacted program behaviors. Traditional notions of coverage are insufficient for characterizing the testing efforts used to validate evolving program behaviors because they do not take into account the impact of changes to the code. In this work we present novel definitions of impacted coverage metrics that are useful for evaluating the testing effort required to test evolving programs. We then describe how the notions of impacted coverage can be used to configure techniques such as DiSE and iDiSE in order to support regression testing related tasks. We also discuss how DiSE and iDiSE can be configured for debugging finding the root cause of errors introduced by changes made to the code. In our empirical evaluation we demonstrate that the configurations of DiSE and iDiSE can be used to support various software maintenance tasks