WorldWideScience

Sample records for randomly selected human

  1. Random genetic drift, natural selection, and noise in human cranial evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roseman, Charles C

    2016-08-01

    This study assesses the extent to which relationships among groups complicate comparative studies of adaptation in recent human cranial variation and the extent to which departures from neutral additive models of evolution hinder the reconstruction of population relationships among groups using cranial morphology. Using a maximum likelihood evolutionary model fitting approach and a mixed population genomic and cranial data set, I evaluate the relative fits of several widely used models of human cranial evolution. Moreover, I compare the goodness of fit of models of cranial evolution constrained by genomic variation to test hypotheses about population specific departures from neutrality. Models from population genomics are much better fits to cranial variation than are traditional models from comparative human biology. There is not enough evolutionary information in the cranium to reconstruct much of recent human evolution but the influence of population history on cranial variation is strong enough to cause comparative studies of adaptation serious difficulties. Deviations from a model of random genetic drift along a tree-like population history show the importance of environmental effects, gene flow, and/or natural selection on human cranial variation. Moreover, there is a strong signal of the effect of natural selection or an environmental factor on a group of humans from Siberia. The evolution of the human cranium is complex and no one evolutionary process has prevailed at the expense of all others. A holistic unification of phenome, genome, and environmental context, gives us a strong point of purchase on these problems, which is unavailable to any one traditional approach alone. Am J Phys Anthropol 160:582-592, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Blocked Randomization with Randomly Selected Block Sizes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jimmy Efird

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available When planning a randomized clinical trial, careful consideration must be given to how participants are selected for various arms of a study. Selection and accidental bias may occur when participants are not assigned to study groups with equal probability. A simple random allocation scheme is a process by which each participant has equal likelihood of being assigned to treatment versus referent groups. However, by chance an unequal number of individuals may be assigned to each arm of the study and thus decrease the power to detect statistically significant differences between groups. Block randomization is a commonly used technique in clinical trial design to reduce bias and achieve balance in the allocation of participants to treatment arms, especially when the sample size is small. This method increases the probability that each arm will contain an equal number of individuals by sequencing participant assignments by block. Yet still, the allocation process may be predictable, for example, when the investigator is not blind and the block size is fixed. This paper provides an overview of blocked randomization and illustrates how to avoid selection bias by using random block sizes.

  3. Minimization over randomly selected lines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ismet Sahin

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a population-based evolutionary optimization method for minimizing a given cost function. The mutation operator of this method selects randomly oriented lines in the cost function domain, constructs quadratic functions interpolating the cost function at three different points over each line, and uses extrema of the quadratics as mutated points. The crossover operator modifies each mutated point based on components of two points in population, instead of one point as is usually performed in other evolutionary algorithms. The stopping criterion of this method depends on the number of almost degenerate quadratics. We demonstrate that the proposed method with these mutation and crossover operations achieves faster and more robust convergence than the well-known Differential Evolution and Particle Swarm algorithms.

  4. Random lasing in human tissues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Polson, Randal C.; Vardeny, Z. Valy

    2004-01-01

    A random collection of scatterers in a gain medium can produce coherent laser emission lines dubbed 'random lasing'. We show that biological tissues, including human tissues, can support coherent random lasing when infiltrated with a concentrated laser dye solution. To extract a typical random resonator size within the tissue we average the power Fourier transform of random laser spectra collected from many excitation locations in the tissue; we verified this procedure by a computer simulation. Surprisingly, we found that malignant tissues show many more laser lines compared to healthy tissues taken from the same organ. Consequently, the obtained typical random resonator was found to be different for healthy and cancerous tissues, and this may lead to a technique for separating malignant from healthy tissues for diagnostic imaging

  5. High Entropy Random Selection Protocols

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    H. Buhrman (Harry); M. Christandl (Matthias); M. Koucky (Michal); Z. Lotker (Zvi); B. Patt-Shamir; M. Charikar; K. Jansen; O. Reingold; J. Rolim

    2007-01-01

    textabstractIn this paper, we construct protocols for two parties that do not trust each other, to generate random variables with high Shannon entropy. We improve known bounds for the trade off between the number of rounds, length of communication and the entropy of the outcome.

  6. The signature of positive selection at randomly chosen loci.

    OpenAIRE

    Przeworski, Molly

    2002-01-01

    In Drosophila and humans, there are accumulating examples of loci with a significant excess of high-frequency-derived alleles or high levels of linkage disequilibrium, relative to a neutral model of a random-mating population of constant size. These are features expected after a recent selective sweep. Their prevalence suggests that positive directional selection may be widespread in both species. However, as I show here, these features do not persist long after the sweep ends: The high-frequ...

  7. Human action analysis with randomized trees

    CERN Document Server

    Yu, Gang; Liu, Zicheng

    2014-01-01

    This book will provide a comprehensive overview on human action analysis with randomized trees. It will cover both the supervised random trees and the unsupervised random trees. When there are sufficient amount of labeled data available, supervised random trees provides a fast method for space-time interest point matching. When labeled data is minimal as in the case of example-based action search, unsupervised random trees is used to leverage the unlabelled data. We describe how the randomized trees can be used for action classification, action detection, action search, and action prediction.

  8. 47 CFR 1.1603 - Conduct of random selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 47 Telecommunication 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Conduct of random selection. 1.1603 Section 1.1603 Telecommunication FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION GENERAL PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE Random Selection Procedures for Mass Media Services General Procedures § 1.1603 Conduct of random selection. The...

  9. 47 CFR 1.1602 - Designation for random selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 47 Telecommunication 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Designation for random selection. 1.1602 Section 1.1602 Telecommunication FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION GENERAL PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE Random Selection Procedures for Mass Media Services General Procedures § 1.1602 Designation for random selection...

  10. Human development recruiting and selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maksimović Marijana

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Along with the development of trends towards internationalization and globalization, human resource management and, especially, international human resource management, attracted overall theoretical and practical interest. International environment is complex, made of numerous elements like social organization, laws, education, values and attitudes, religion language, politics, material and technological culture. In multicultural environment, strategic activities could be multiplied through economical political, cultural, social and technological spheres of action, making the recruitment, selection and successful resource allocation in the international human resource management a real challenge for top management. In international human resource management practice, several approaches to the recruitment have differentiated, playing the key roles in hiring talented individuals and retaining efficient workforce KW resources, labor force, recruiting, managers, education

  11. Testing, Selection, and Implementation of Random Number Generators

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Collins, Joseph C

    2008-01-01

    An exhaustive evaluation of state-of-the-art random number generators with several well-known suites of tests provides the basis for selection of suitable random number generators for use in stochastic simulations...

  12. Binaural frequency selectivity in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verhey, Jesko L; van de Par, Steven

    2018-01-23

    Several behavioural studies in humans have shown that listening to sounds with two ears that is binaural hearing, provides the human auditory system with extra information on the sound source that is not available when sounds are only perceived through one ear that is monaurally. Binaural processing involves the analysis of phase and level differences between the two ear signals. As monaural cochlea processing (in each ear) precedes the neural stages responsible for binaural processing properties it is reasonable to assume that properties of the cochlea may also be observed in binaural processing. A main characteristic of cochlea processing is its frequency selectivity. In psychoacoustics, there is an ongoing discussion on the frequency selectivity of the binaural auditory system. While some psychoacoustic experiments seem to indicate poorer frequency selectivity of the binaural system than that of the monaural processing others seem to indicate the same frequency selectivity for monaural and binaural processing. This study provides an overview of these seemingly controversial results and the different explanations that were provided to account for the different results. © 2018 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. The signature of positive selection at randomly chosen loci.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Przeworski, Molly

    2002-03-01

    In Drosophila and humans, there are accumulating examples of loci with a significant excess of high-frequency-derived alleles or high levels of linkage disequilibrium, relative to a neutral model of a random-mating population of constant size. These are features expected after a recent selective sweep. Their prevalence suggests that positive directional selection may be widespread in both species. However, as I show here, these features do not persist long after the sweep ends: The high-frequency alleles drift to fixation and no longer contribute to polymorphism, while linkage disequilibrium is broken down by recombination. As a result, loci chosen without independent evidence of recent selection are not expected to exhibit either of these features, even if they have been affected by numerous sweeps in their genealogical history. How then can we explain the patterns in the data? One possibility is population structure, with unequal sampling from different subpopulations. Alternatively, positive selection may not operate as is commonly modeled. In particular, the rate of fixation of advantageous mutations may have increased in the recent past.

  14. Random effect selection in generalised linear models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Denwood, Matt; Houe, Hans; Forkman, Björn

    We analysed abattoir recordings of meat inspection codes with possible relevance to onfarm animal welfare in cattle. Random effects logistic regression models were used to describe individual-level data obtained from 461,406 cattle slaughtered in Denmark. Our results demonstrate that the largest...

  15. Interference-aware random beam selection for spectrum sharing systems

    KAUST Repository

    Abdallah, Mohamed M.; Sayed, Mostafa M.; Alouini, Mohamed-Slim; Qaraqe, Khalid A.

    2012-01-01

    . In this paper, we develop interference-aware random beam selection schemes that provide enhanced throughput for the secondary link under the condition that the interference observed at the primary link is within a predetermined acceptable value. For a secondary

  16. Selectivity and sparseness in randomly connected balanced networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cengiz Pehlevan

    Full Text Available Neurons in sensory cortex show stimulus selectivity and sparse population response, even in cases where no strong functionally specific structure in connectivity can be detected. This raises the question whether selectivity and sparseness can be generated and maintained in randomly connected networks. We consider a recurrent network of excitatory and inhibitory spiking neurons with random connectivity, driven by random projections from an input layer of stimulus selective neurons. In this architecture, the stimulus-to-stimulus and neuron-to-neuron modulation of total synaptic input is weak compared to the mean input. Surprisingly, we show that in the balanced state the network can still support high stimulus selectivity and sparse population response. In the balanced state, strong synapses amplify the variation in synaptic input and recurrent inhibition cancels the mean. Functional specificity in connectivity emerges due to the inhomogeneity caused by the generative statistical rule used to build the network. We further elucidate the mechanism behind and evaluate the effects of model parameters on population sparseness and stimulus selectivity. Network response to mixtures of stimuli is investigated. It is shown that a balanced state with unselective inhibition can be achieved with densely connected input to inhibitory population. Balanced networks exhibit the "paradoxical" effect: an increase in excitatory drive to inhibition leads to decreased inhibitory population firing rate. We compare and contrast selectivity and sparseness generated by the balanced network to randomly connected unbalanced networks. Finally, we discuss our results in light of experiments.

  17. The reliability of randomly selected final year pharmacy students in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Employing ANOVA, factorial experimental analysis, and the theory of error, reliability studies were conducted on the assessment of the drug product chloroquine phosphate tablets. The G–Study employed equal numbers of the factors for uniform control, and involved three analysts (randomly selected final year Pharmacy ...

  18. Local randomization in neighbor selection improves PRM roadmap quality

    KAUST Repository

    McMahon, Troy

    2012-10-01

    Probabilistic Roadmap Methods (PRMs) are one of the most used classes of motion planning methods. These sampling-based methods generate robot configurations (nodes) and then connect them to form a graph (roadmap) containing representative feasible pathways. A key step in PRM roadmap construction involves identifying a set of candidate neighbors for each node. Traditionally, these candidates are chosen to be the k-closest nodes based on a given distance metric. In this paper, we propose a new neighbor selection policy called LocalRand(k,K\\'), that first computes the K\\' closest nodes to a specified node and then selects k of those nodes at random. Intuitively, LocalRand attempts to benefit from random sampling while maintaining the higher levels of local planner success inherent to selecting more local neighbors. We provide a methodology for selecting the parameters k and K\\'. We perform an experimental comparison which shows that for both rigid and articulated robots, LocalRand results in roadmaps that are better connected than the traditional k-closest policy or a purely random neighbor selection policy. The cost required to achieve these results is shown to be comparable to k-closest. © 2012 IEEE.

  19. Local randomization in neighbor selection improves PRM roadmap quality

    KAUST Repository

    McMahon, Troy; Jacobs, Sam; Boyd, Bryan; Tapia, Lydia; Amato, Nancy M.

    2012-01-01

    Probabilistic Roadmap Methods (PRMs) are one of the most used classes of motion planning methods. These sampling-based methods generate robot configurations (nodes) and then connect them to form a graph (roadmap) containing representative feasible pathways. A key step in PRM roadmap construction involves identifying a set of candidate neighbors for each node. Traditionally, these candidates are chosen to be the k-closest nodes based on a given distance metric. In this paper, we propose a new neighbor selection policy called LocalRand(k,K'), that first computes the K' closest nodes to a specified node and then selects k of those nodes at random. Intuitively, LocalRand attempts to benefit from random sampling while maintaining the higher levels of local planner success inherent to selecting more local neighbors. We provide a methodology for selecting the parameters k and K'. We perform an experimental comparison which shows that for both rigid and articulated robots, LocalRand results in roadmaps that are better connected than the traditional k-closest policy or a purely random neighbor selection policy. The cost required to achieve these results is shown to be comparable to k-closest. © 2012 IEEE.

  20. Selection for altruism through random drift in variable size populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Houchmandzadeh Bahram

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Altruistic behavior is defined as helping others at a cost to oneself and a lowered fitness. The lower fitness implies that altruists should be selected against, which is in contradiction with their widespread presence is nature. Present models of selection for altruism (kin or multilevel show that altruistic behaviors can have ‘hidden’ advantages if the ‘common good’ produced by altruists is restricted to some related or unrelated groups. These models are mostly deterministic, or assume a frequency dependent fitness. Results Evolutionary dynamics is a competition between deterministic selection pressure and stochastic events due to random sampling from one generation to the next. We show here that an altruistic allele extending the carrying capacity of the habitat can win by increasing the random drift of “selfish” alleles. In other terms, the fixation probability of altruistic genes can be higher than those of a selfish ones, even though altruists have a smaller fitness. Moreover when populations are geographically structured, the altruists advantage can be highly amplified and the fixation probability of selfish genes can tend toward zero. The above results are obtained both by numerical and analytical calculations. Analytical results are obtained in the limit of large populations. Conclusions The theory we present does not involve kin or multilevel selection, but is based on the existence of random drift in variable size populations. The model is a generalization of the original Fisher-Wright and Moran models where the carrying capacity depends on the number of altruists.

  1. Constraint, natural selection, and the evolution of human body form.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savell, Kristen R R; Auerbach, Benjamin M; Roseman, Charles C

    2016-08-23

    Variation in body form among human groups is structured by a blend of natural selection driven by local climatic conditions and random genetic drift. However, attempts to test ecogeographic hypotheses have not distinguished between adaptive traits (i.e., those that evolved as a result of selection) and those that evolved as a correlated response to selection on other traits (i.e., nonadaptive traits), complicating our understanding of the relationship between climate and morphological distinctions among populations. Here, we use evolutionary quantitative methods to test if traits previously identified as supporting ecogeographic hypotheses were actually adaptive by estimating the force of selection on individual traits needed to drive among-group differentiation. Our results show that not all associations between trait means and latitude were caused by selection acting directly on each individual trait. Although radial and tibial length and biiliac and femoral head breadth show signs of responses to directional selection matching ecogeographic hypotheses, the femur was subject to little or no directional selection despite having shorter values by latitude. Additionally, in contradiction to ecogeographic hypotheses, the humerus was under directional selection for longer values by latitude. Responses to directional selection in the tibia and radius induced a nonadaptive correlated response in the humerus that overwhelmed its own trait-specific response to selection. This result emphasizes that mean differences between groups are not good indicators of which traits are adaptations in the absence of information about covariation among characteristics.

  2. Interference-aware random beam selection for spectrum sharing systems

    KAUST Repository

    Abdallah, Mohamed M.

    2012-09-01

    Spectrum sharing systems have been introduced to alleviate the problem of spectrum scarcity by allowing secondary unlicensed networks to share the spectrum with primary licensed networks under acceptable interference levels to the primary users. In this paper, we develop interference-aware random beam selection schemes that provide enhanced throughput for the secondary link under the condition that the interference observed at the primary link is within a predetermined acceptable value. For a secondary transmitter equipped with multiple antennas, our schemes select a random beam, among a set of power- optimized orthogonal random beams, that maximizes the capacity of the secondary link while satisfying the interference constraint at the primary receiver for different levels of feedback information describing the interference level at the primary receiver. For the proposed schemes, we develop a statistical analysis for the signal-to-noise and interference ratio (SINR) statistics as well as the capacity of the secondary link. Finally, we present numerical results that study the effect of system parameters including number of beams and the maximum transmission power on the capacity of the secondary link attained using the proposed schemes. © 2012 IEEE.

  3. Random selection of items. Selection of n1 samples among N items composing a stratum

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jaech, J.L.; Lemaire, R.J.

    1987-02-01

    STR-224 provides generalized procedures to determine required sample sizes, for instance in the course of a Physical Inventory Verification at Bulk Handling Facilities. The present report describes procedures to generate random numbers and select groups of items to be verified in a given stratum through each of the measurement methods involved in the verification. (author). 3 refs

  4. TEHRAN AIR POLLUTANTS PREDICTION BASED ON RANDOM FOREST FEATURE SELECTION METHOD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Shamsoddini

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Air pollution as one of the most serious forms of environmental pollutions poses huge threat to human life. Air pollution leads to environmental instability, and has harmful and undesirable effects on the environment. Modern prediction methods of the pollutant concentration are able to improve decision making and provide appropriate solutions. This study examines the performance of the Random Forest feature selection in combination with multiple-linear regression and Multilayer Perceptron Artificial Neural Networks methods, in order to achieve an efficient model to estimate carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide and PM2.5 contents in the air. The results indicated that Artificial Neural Networks fed by the attributes selected by Random Forest feature selection method performed more accurate than other models for the modeling of all pollutants. The estimation accuracy of sulfur dioxide emissions was lower than the other air contaminants whereas the nitrogen dioxide was predicted more accurate than the other pollutants.

  5. Tehran Air Pollutants Prediction Based on Random Forest Feature Selection Method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shamsoddini, A.; Aboodi, M. R.; Karami, J.

    2017-09-01

    Air pollution as one of the most serious forms of environmental pollutions poses huge threat to human life. Air pollution leads to environmental instability, and has harmful and undesirable effects on the environment. Modern prediction methods of the pollutant concentration are able to improve decision making and provide appropriate solutions. This study examines the performance of the Random Forest feature selection in combination with multiple-linear regression and Multilayer Perceptron Artificial Neural Networks methods, in order to achieve an efficient model to estimate carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide and PM2.5 contents in the air. The results indicated that Artificial Neural Networks fed by the attributes selected by Random Forest feature selection method performed more accurate than other models for the modeling of all pollutants. The estimation accuracy of sulfur dioxide emissions was lower than the other air contaminants whereas the nitrogen dioxide was predicted more accurate than the other pollutants.

  6. A Bayesian random effects discrete-choice model for resource selection: Population-level selection inference

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, D.L.; Johnson, D.; Griffith, B.

    2006-01-01

    Modeling the probability of use of land units characterized by discrete and continuous measures, we present a Bayesian random-effects model to assess resource selection. This model provides simultaneous estimation of both individual- and population-level selection. Deviance information criterion (DIC), a Bayesian alternative to AIC that is sample-size specific, is used for model selection. Aerial radiolocation data from 76 adult female caribou (Rangifer tarandus) and calf pairs during 1 year on an Arctic coastal plain calving ground were used to illustrate models and assess population-level selection of landscape attributes, as well as individual heterogeneity of selection. Landscape attributes included elevation, NDVI (a measure of forage greenness), and land cover-type classification. Results from the first of a 2-stage model-selection procedure indicated that there is substantial heterogeneity among cow-calf pairs with respect to selection of the landscape attributes. In the second stage, selection of models with heterogeneity included indicated that at the population-level, NDVI and land cover class were significant attributes for selection of different landscapes by pairs on the calving ground. Population-level selection coefficients indicate that the pairs generally select landscapes with higher levels of NDVI, but the relationship is quadratic. The highest rate of selection occurs at values of NDVI less than the maximum observed. Results for land cover-class selections coefficients indicate that wet sedge, moist sedge, herbaceous tussock tundra, and shrub tussock tundra are selected at approximately the same rate, while alpine and sparsely vegetated landscapes are selected at a lower rate. Furthermore, the variability in selection by individual caribou for moist sedge and sparsely vegetated landscapes is large relative to the variability in selection of other land cover types. The example analysis illustrates that, while sometimes computationally intense, a

  7. Blind Measurement Selection: A Random Matrix Theory Approach

    KAUST Repository

    Elkhalil, Khalil

    2016-12-14

    This paper considers the problem of selecting a set of $k$ measurements from $n$ available sensor observations. The selected measurements should minimize a certain error function assessing the error in estimating a certain $m$ dimensional parameter vector. The exhaustive search inspecting each of the $n\\\\choose k$ possible choices would require a very high computational complexity and as such is not practical for large $n$ and $k$. Alternative methods with low complexity have recently been investigated but their main drawbacks are that 1) they require perfect knowledge of the measurement matrix and 2) they need to be applied at the pace of change of the measurement matrix. To overcome these issues, we consider the asymptotic regime in which $k$, $n$ and $m$ grow large at the same pace. Tools from random matrix theory are then used to approximate in closed-form the most important error measures that are commonly used. The asymptotic approximations are then leveraged to select properly $k$ measurements exhibiting low values for the asymptotic error measures. Two heuristic algorithms are proposed: the first one merely consists in applying the convex optimization artifice to the asymptotic error measure. The second algorithm is a low-complexity greedy algorithm that attempts to look for a sufficiently good solution for the original minimization problem. The greedy algorithm can be applied to both the exact and the asymptotic error measures and can be thus implemented in blind and channel-aware fashions. We present two potential applications where the proposed algorithms can be used, namely antenna selection for uplink transmissions in large scale multi-user systems and sensor selection for wireless sensor networks. Numerical results are also presented and sustain the efficiency of the proposed blind methods in reaching the performances of channel-aware algorithms.

  8. Random matrix analysis of human EEG data

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šeba, Petr

    2003-01-01

    Roč. 91, - (2003), s. 198104-1 - 198104-4 ISSN 0031-9007 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA202/02/0088 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1010914 Keywords : random matrix theory * EEG signal Subject RIV: BE - Theoretical Physics Impact factor: 7.035, year: 2003

  9. Emergence of multilevel selection in the prisoner's dilemma game on coevolving random networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Szolnoki, Attila; Perc, Matjaz

    2009-01-01

    We study the evolution of cooperation in the prisoner's dilemma game, whereby a coevolutionary rule is introduced that molds the random topology of the interaction network in two ways. First, existing links are deleted whenever a player adopts a new strategy or its degree exceeds a threshold value; second, new links are added randomly after a given number of game iterations. These coevolutionary processes correspond to the generic formation of new links and deletion of existing links that, especially in human societies, appear frequently as a consequence of ongoing socialization, change of lifestyle or death. Due to the counteraction of deletions and additions of links the initial heterogeneity of the interaction network is qualitatively preserved, and thus cannot be held responsible for the observed promotion of cooperation. Indeed, the coevolutionary rule evokes the spontaneous emergence of a powerful multilevel selection mechanism, which despite the sustained random topology of the evolving network, maintains cooperation across the whole span of defection temptation values.

  10. Materials selection for oxide-based resistive random access memories

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Guo, Yuzheng; Robertson, John

    2014-01-01

    The energies of atomic processes in resistive random access memories (RRAMs) are calculated for four typical oxides, HfO 2 , TiO 2 , Ta 2 O 5 , and Al 2 O 3 , to define a materials selection process. O vacancies have the lowest defect formation energy in the O-poor limit and dominate the processes. A band diagram defines the operating Fermi energy and O chemical potential range. It is shown how the scavenger metal can be used to vary the O vacancy formation energy, via controlling the O chemical potential, and the mean Fermi energy. The high endurance of Ta 2 O 5 RRAM is related to its more stable amorphous phase and the adaptive lattice rearrangements of its O vacancy

  11. Primitive polynomials selection method for pseudo-random number generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anikin, I. V.; Alnajjar, Kh

    2018-01-01

    In this paper we suggested the method for primitive polynomials selection of special type. This kind of polynomials can be efficiently used as a characteristic polynomials for linear feedback shift registers in pseudo-random number generators. The proposed method consists of two basic steps: finding minimum-cost irreducible polynomials of the desired degree and applying primitivity tests to get the primitive ones. Finally two primitive polynomials, which was found by the proposed method, used in pseudorandom number generator based on fuzzy logic (FRNG) which had been suggested before by the authors. The sequences generated by new version of FRNG have low correlation magnitude, high linear complexity, less power consumption, is more balanced and have better statistical properties.

  12. Materials selection for oxide-based resistive random access memories

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Guo, Yuzheng; Robertson, John [Engineering Department, Cambridge University, Cambridge CB2 1PZ (United Kingdom)

    2014-12-01

    The energies of atomic processes in resistive random access memories (RRAMs) are calculated for four typical oxides, HfO{sub 2}, TiO{sub 2}, Ta{sub 2}O{sub 5}, and Al{sub 2}O{sub 3}, to define a materials selection process. O vacancies have the lowest defect formation energy in the O-poor limit and dominate the processes. A band diagram defines the operating Fermi energy and O chemical potential range. It is shown how the scavenger metal can be used to vary the O vacancy formation energy, via controlling the O chemical potential, and the mean Fermi energy. The high endurance of Ta{sub 2}O{sub 5} RRAM is related to its more stable amorphous phase and the adaptive lattice rearrangements of its O vacancy.

  13. Optimizing Event Selection with the Random Grid Search

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bhat, Pushpalatha C. [Fermilab; Prosper, Harrison B. [Florida State U.; Sekmen, Sezen [Kyungpook Natl. U.; Stewart, Chip [Broad Inst., Cambridge

    2017-06-29

    The random grid search (RGS) is a simple, but efficient, stochastic algorithm to find optimal cuts that was developed in the context of the search for the top quark at Fermilab in the mid-1990s. The algorithm, and associated code, have been enhanced recently with the introduction of two new cut types, one of which has been successfully used in searches for supersymmetry at the Large Hadron Collider. The RGS optimization algorithm is described along with the recent developments, which are illustrated with two examples from particle physics. One explores the optimization of the selection of vector boson fusion events in the four-lepton decay mode of the Higgs boson and the other optimizes SUSY searches using boosted objects and the razor variables.

  14. Selective decontamination in pediatric liver transplants. A randomized prospective study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, S D; Jackson, R J; Hannakan, C J; Wadowsky, R M; Tzakis, A G; Rowe, M I

    1993-06-01

    Although it has been suggested that selective decontamination of the digestive tract (SDD) decreases postoperative aerobic Gram-negative and fungal infections in orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT), no controlled trials exist in pediatric patients. This prospective, randomized controlled study of 36 pediatric OLT patients examines the effect of short-term SDD on postoperative infection and digestive tract flora. Patients were randomized into two groups. The control group received perioperative parenteral antibiotics only. The SDD group received in addition polymyxin E, tobramycin, and amphotericin B enterally and by oropharyngeal swab postoperatively until oral intake was tolerated (6 +/- 4 days). Indications for operation, preoperative status, age, and intensive care unit and hospital length of stay were no different in SDD (n = 18) and control (n = 18) groups. A total of 14 Gram-negative infections (intraabdominal abscess 7, septicemia 5, pneumonia 1, urinary tract 1) developed in the 36 patients studied. Mortality was not significantly different in the two groups. However, there were significantly fewer patients with Gram-negative infections in the SDD group: 3/18 patients (11%) vs. 11/18 patients (50%) in the control group, P < 0.001. There was also significant reduction in aerobic Gram-negative flora in the stool and pharynx in patients receiving SDD. Gram-positive and anaerobic organisms were unaffected. We conclude that short-term postoperative SDD significantly reduces Gram-negative infections in pediatric OLT patients.

  15. Pediatric selective mutism therapy: a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esposito, Maria; Gimigliano, Francesca; Barillari, Maria R; Precenzano, Francesco; Ruberto, Maria; Sepe, Joseph; Barillari, Umberto; Gimigliano, Raffaele; Militerni, Roberto; Messina, Giovanni; Carotenuto, Marco

    2017-10-01

    Selective mutism (SM) is a rare disease in children coded by DSM-5 as an anxiety disorder. Despite the disabling nature of the disease, there is still no specific treatment. The aims of this study were to verify the efficacy of six-month standard psychomotor treatment and the positive changes in lifestyle, in a population of children affected by SM. Randomized controlled trial registered in the European Clinical Trials Registry (EuDract 2015-001161-36). University third level Centre (Child and Adolescent Neuropsychiatry Clinic). Study population was composed by 67 children in group A (psychomotricity treatment) (35 M, mean age 7.84±1.15) and 71 children in group B (behavioral and educational counseling) (37 M, mean age 7.75±1.36). Psychomotor treatment was administered by trained child therapists in residential settings three times per week. Each child was treated for the whole period by the same therapist and all the therapists shared the same protocol. The standard psychomotor session length is of 45 minutes. At T0 and after 6 months (T1) of treatments, patients underwent a behavioral and SM severity assessment. To verify the effects of the psychomotor management, the Child Behavior Checklist questionnaire (CBCL) and Selective Mutism Questionnaire (SMQ) were administered to the parents. After 6 months of psychomotor treatment SM children showed a significant reduction among CBCL scores such as in social relations, anxious/depressed, social problems and total problems (Pselective mutism, even if further studies are needed. The present study identifies in psychomotricity a safe and efficacy therapy for pediatric selective mutism.

  16. Sexually antagonistic selection in human male homosexuality.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Camperio Ciani

    Full Text Available Several lines of evidence indicate the existence of genetic factors influencing male homosexuality and bisexuality. In spite of its relatively low frequency, the stable permanence in all human populations of this apparently detrimental trait constitutes a puzzling 'Darwinian paradox'. Furthermore, several studies have pointed out relevant asymmetries in the distribution of both male homosexuality and of female fecundity in the parental lines of homosexual vs. heterosexual males. A number of hypotheses have attempted to give an evolutionary explanation for the long-standing persistence of this trait, and for its asymmetric distribution in family lines; however a satisfactory understanding of the population genetics of male homosexuality is lacking at present. We perform a systematic mathematical analysis of the propagation and equilibrium of the putative genetic factors for male homosexuality in the population, based on the selection equation for one or two diallelic loci and Bayesian statistics for pedigree investigation. We show that only the two-locus genetic model with at least one locus on the X chromosome, and in which gene expression is sexually antagonistic (increasing female fitness but decreasing male fitness, accounts for all known empirical data. Our results help clarify the basic evolutionary dynamics of male homosexuality, establishing this as a clearly ascertained sexually antagonistic human trait.

  17. Blind Measurement Selection: A Random Matrix Theory Approach

    KAUST Repository

    Elkhalil, Khalil; Kammoun, Abla; Al-Naffouri, Tareq Y.; Alouini, Mohamed-Slim

    2016-01-01

    -aware fashions. We present two potential applications where the proposed algorithms can be used, namely antenna selection for uplink transmissions in large scale multi-user systems and sensor selection for wireless sensor networks. Numerical results are also

  18. Are Humans Still Evolving? A Natural Selection Discussion Lesson

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shields, Martin

    2004-01-01

    A study is conducted to develop sound comprehension of natural selection theory by prompting students to use its concept to explain the evolutionary status of humans. In relation to the current existence of human it is stated that human populations currently undergo microevolutionary changes in allele frequencies due to natural selection and other…

  19. Strategyproof Peer Selection using Randomization, Partitioning, and Apportionment

    OpenAIRE

    Aziz, Haris; Lev, Omer; Mattei, Nicholas; Rosenschein, Jeffrey S.; Walsh, Toby

    2016-01-01

    Peer review, evaluation, and selection is a fundamental aspect of modern science. Funding bodies the world over employ experts to review and select the best proposals of those submitted for funding. The problem of peer selection, however, is much more general: a professional society may want to give a subset of its members awards based on the opinions of all members; an instructor for a MOOC or online course may want to crowdsource grading; or a marketing company may select ideas from group b...

  20. Human Resource Valuation and the Performance of Selected Banks ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Human Resource Valuation and the Performance of Selected Banks in ... the researcher gathered data from Nigerian banks listed in the Nigeria Stock ... Conclusively, human resources cost approach to corporate performance measurement ...

  1. Human Activity Recognition in AAL Environments Using Random Projections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robertas Damaševičius

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Automatic human activity recognition systems aim to capture the state of the user and its environment by exploiting heterogeneous sensors attached to the subject’s body and permit continuous monitoring of numerous physiological signals reflecting the state of human actions. Successful identification of human activities can be immensely useful in healthcare applications for Ambient Assisted Living (AAL, for automatic and intelligent activity monitoring systems developed for elderly and disabled people. In this paper, we propose the method for activity recognition and subject identification based on random projections from high-dimensional feature space to low-dimensional projection space, where the classes are separated using the Jaccard distance between probability density functions of projected data. Two HAR domain tasks are considered: activity identification and subject identification. The experimental results using the proposed method with Human Activity Dataset (HAD data are presented.

  2. Human Activity Recognition in AAL Environments Using Random Projections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Damaševičius, Robertas; Vasiljevas, Mindaugas; Šalkevičius, Justas; Woźniak, Marcin

    2016-01-01

    Automatic human activity recognition systems aim to capture the state of the user and its environment by exploiting heterogeneous sensors attached to the subject's body and permit continuous monitoring of numerous physiological signals reflecting the state of human actions. Successful identification of human activities can be immensely useful in healthcare applications for Ambient Assisted Living (AAL), for automatic and intelligent activity monitoring systems developed for elderly and disabled people. In this paper, we propose the method for activity recognition and subject identification based on random projections from high-dimensional feature space to low-dimensional projection space, where the classes are separated using the Jaccard distance between probability density functions of projected data. Two HAR domain tasks are considered: activity identification and subject identification. The experimental results using the proposed method with Human Activity Dataset (HAD) data are presented.

  3. Variable Selection in Time Series Forecasting Using Random Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hristos Tyralis

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Time series forecasting using machine learning algorithms has gained popularity recently. Random forest is a machine learning algorithm implemented in time series forecasting; however, most of its forecasting properties have remained unexplored. Here we focus on assessing the performance of random forests in one-step forecasting using two large datasets of short time series with the aim to suggest an optimal set of predictor variables. Furthermore, we compare its performance to benchmarking methods. The first dataset is composed by 16,000 simulated time series from a variety of Autoregressive Fractionally Integrated Moving Average (ARFIMA models. The second dataset consists of 135 mean annual temperature time series. The highest predictive performance of RF is observed when using a low number of recent lagged predictor variables. This outcome could be useful in relevant future applications, with the prospect to achieve higher predictive accuracy.

  4. Long-term efficacy of modified-release recombinant human TSH (MRrhTSH) augmented radioiodine (131I) therapy for benign multinodular goiter. Results from a multicenter international, randomized, placebo-controlled dose-selection study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fast, Søren; Hegedus, Laszlo; Pacini, Furio

    2014-01-01

    with 131I-therapy. Methods: In this phase II, single-blinded, placebo-controlled study, 95 patients (57.2±9.6 years old, 85% women, 83% Caucasians) with MNG (median size 96.0 ml (31.9 - 242.2 ml)) were randomized to receive placebo (n=32), 0.01 mg MRrhTSH (n=30) or 0.03 mg MRrhTSH (n=33), 24 hours before...... a calculated 131I activity. Thyroid volume (TV) and smallest cross-sectional area of trachea (SCAT) were measured (by CT-scan) at baseline, month 6 and month 36. Thyroid function and quality of life (QoL) was evaluated at 3 month and yearly intervals, respectively. Results: At 6 months, TV reduction...... was enhanced in the 0.03 mg MRrhTSH group (32.9% versus 23.1% in the placebo group, p=0.03), but not in the 0.01 mg MRrhTSH group. At month 36 the mean percent TV reduction from baseline was 44 ± 12.7% (SD) in the placebo group, 41 ± 21.0% in the 0.01 mg MRrhTSH-group and 53 ± 18.6% in the 0.03 mg MRrh...

  5. Random-walk simulation of selected aspects of dissipative collisions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Toeke, J.; Gobbi, A.; Matulewicz, T.

    1984-11-01

    Internuclear thermal equilibrium effects and shell structure effects in dissipative collisions are studied numerically within the framework of the model of stochastic exchanges by applying the random-walk technique. Effective blocking of the drift through the mass flux induced by the temperature difference, while leaving the variances of the mass distributions unaltered is found possible, provided an internuclear potential barrier is present. Presence of the shell structure is found to lead to characteristic correlations between the consecutive exchanges. Experimental evidence for the predicted effects is discussed. (orig.)

  6. Geography and genography: prediction of continental origin using randomly selected single nucleotide polymorphisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramoni Marco F

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Recent studies have shown that when individuals are grouped on the basis of genetic similarity, group membership corresponds closely to continental origin. There has been considerable debate about the implications of these findings in the context of larger debates about race and the extent of genetic variation between groups. Some have argued that clustering according to continental origin demonstrates the existence of significant genetic differences between groups and that these differences may have important implications for differences in health and disease. Others argue that clustering according to continental origin requires the use of large amounts of genetic data or specifically chosen markers and is indicative only of very subtle genetic differences that are unlikely to have biomedical significance. Results We used small numbers of randomly selected single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs from the International HapMap Project to train naïve Bayes classifiers for prediction of ancestral continent of origin. Predictive accuracy was tested on two independent data sets. Genetically similar groups should be difficult to distinguish, especially if only a small number of genetic markers are used. The genetic differences between continentally defined groups are sufficiently large that one can accurately predict ancestral continent of origin using only a minute, randomly selected fraction of the genetic variation present in the human genome. Genotype data from only 50 random SNPs was sufficient to predict ancestral continent of origin in our primary test data set with an average accuracy of 95%. Genetic variations informative about ancestry were common and widely distributed throughout the genome. Conclusion Accurate characterization of ancestry is possible using small numbers of randomly selected SNPs. The results presented here show how investigators conducting genetic association studies can use small numbers of arbitrarily

  7. Application of random effects to the study of resource selection by animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillies, Cameron S; Hebblewhite, Mark; Nielsen, Scott E; Krawchuk, Meg A; Aldridge, Cameron L; Frair, Jacqueline L; Saher, D Joanne; Stevens, Cameron E; Jerde, Christopher L

    2006-07-01

    1. Resource selection estimated by logistic regression is used increasingly in studies to identify critical resources for animal populations and to predict species occurrence. 2. Most frequently, individual animals are monitored and pooled to estimate population-level effects without regard to group or individual-level variation. Pooling assumes that both observations and their errors are independent, and resource selection is constant given individual variation in resource availability. 3. Although researchers have identified ways to minimize autocorrelation, variation between individuals caused by differences in selection or available resources, including functional responses in resource selection, have not been well addressed. 4. Here we review random-effects models and their application to resource selection modelling to overcome these common limitations. We present a simple case study of an analysis of resource selection by grizzly bears in the foothills of the Canadian Rocky Mountains with and without random effects. 5. Both categorical and continuous variables in the grizzly bear model differed in interpretation, both in statistical significance and coefficient sign, depending on how a random effect was included. We used a simulation approach to clarify the application of random effects under three common situations for telemetry studies: (a) discrepancies in sample sizes among individuals; (b) differences among individuals in selection where availability is constant; and (c) differences in availability with and without a functional response in resource selection. 6. We found that random intercepts accounted for unbalanced sample designs, and models with random intercepts and coefficients improved model fit given the variation in selection among individuals and functional responses in selection. Our empirical example and simulations demonstrate how including random effects in resource selection models can aid interpretation and address difficult assumptions

  8. Issues of Selection in Human Survivorship

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Hans Oluf

    , and Iceland during the past 250 years and in Japan any ten years between 1950 and 1990 is approached appropriately by the model. Reduced natural selection may account for a substantial part of the empirical mortality change in the course of the demographic transition. Survivorship in the late nineteenth......Is variation in empirical mortality across populations consistent with a hypothesis of selec-tion? To examine this proposition an extended frailty mortality model is put forward; incor-porating biological frailty; a common non-parametric hazard, joint for men and women, rep-resenting endogenous...... and the twentieth century ties selection to major medical advances and rapid recent mortality decline, probably with consequences for future health and survivorship....

  9. Interference-aware random beam selection schemes for spectrum sharing systems

    KAUST Repository

    Abdallah, Mohamed; Qaraqe, Khalid; Alouini, Mohamed-Slim

    2012-01-01

    users. In this work, we develop interference-aware random beam selection schemes that provide enhanced performance for the secondary network under the condition that the interference observed by the receivers of the primary network is below a

  10. Assessing the accuracy and stability of variable selection methods for random forest modeling in ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Random forest (RF) modeling has emerged as an important statistical learning method in ecology due to its exceptional predictive performance. However, for large and complex ecological datasets there is limited guidance on variable selection methods for RF modeling. Typically, e...

  11. The mathematics of random mutation and natural selection for multiple simultaneous selection pressures and the evolution of antimicrobial drug resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinman, Alan

    2016-12-20

    The random mutation and natural selection phenomenon act in a mathematically predictable behavior, which when understood leads to approaches to reduce and prevent the failure of the use of these selection pressures when treating infections and cancers. The underlying principle to impair the random mutation and natural selection phenomenon is to use combination therapy, which forces the population to evolve to multiple selection pressures simultaneously that invoke the multiplication rule of probabilities simultaneously as well. Recently, it has been seen that combination therapy for the treatment of malaria has failed to prevent the emergence of drug-resistant variants. Using this empirical example and the principles of probability theory, the derivation of the equations describing this treatment failure is carried out. These equations give guidance as to how to use combination therapy for the treatment of cancers and infectious diseases and prevent the emergence of drug resistance. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  12. Acceptance sampling using judgmental and randomly selected samples

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sego, Landon H.; Shulman, Stanley A.; Anderson, Kevin K.; Wilson, John E.; Pulsipher, Brent A.; Sieber, W. Karl

    2010-09-01

    We present a Bayesian model for acceptance sampling where the population consists of two groups, each with different levels of risk of containing unacceptable items. Expert opinion, or judgment, may be required to distinguish between the high and low-risk groups. Hence, high-risk items are likely to be identifed (and sampled) using expert judgment, while the remaining low-risk items are sampled randomly. We focus on the situation where all observed samples must be acceptable. Consequently, the objective of the statistical inference is to quantify the probability that a large percentage of the unsampled items in the population are also acceptable. We demonstrate that traditional (frequentist) acceptance sampling and simpler Bayesian formulations of the problem are essentially special cases of the proposed model. We explore the properties of the model in detail, and discuss the conditions necessary to ensure that required samples sizes are non-decreasing function of the population size. The method is applicable to a variety of acceptance sampling problems, and, in particular, to environmental sampling where the objective is to demonstrate the safety of reoccupying a remediated facility that has been contaminated with a lethal agent.

  13. Positive selection on gene expression in the human brain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Khaitovich, Philipp; Tang, Kun; Franz, Henriette

    2006-01-01

    Recent work has shown that the expression levels of genes transcribed in the brains of humans and chimpanzees have changed less than those of genes transcribed in other tissues [1] . However, when gene expression changes are mapped onto the evolutionary lineage in which they occurred, the brain...... shows more changes than other tissues in the human lineage compared to the chimpanzee lineage [1] , [2] and [3] . There are two possible explanations for this: either positive selection drove more gene expression changes to fixation in the human brain than in the chimpanzee brain, or genes expressed...... in the brain experienced less purifying selection in humans than in chimpanzees, i.e. gene expression in the human brain is functionally less constrained. The first scenario would be supported if genes that changed their expression in the brain in the human lineage showed more selective sweeps than other genes...

  14. 40 CFR 761.308 - Sample selection by random number generation on any two-dimensional square grid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 30 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Sample selection by random number... § 761.79(b)(3) § 761.308 Sample selection by random number generation on any two-dimensional square... area created in accordance with paragraph (a) of this section, select two random numbers: one each for...

  15. Evidence of directional and stabilizing selection in contemporary humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanjak, Jaleal S; Sidorenko, Julia; Robinson, Matthew R; Thornton, Kevin R; Visscher, Peter M

    2018-01-02

    Modern molecular genetic datasets, primarily collected to study the biology of human health and disease, can be used to directly measure the action of natural selection and reveal important features of contemporary human evolution. Here we leverage the UK Biobank data to test for the presence of linear and nonlinear natural selection in a contemporary population of the United Kingdom. We obtain phenotypic and genetic evidence consistent with the action of linear/directional selection. Phenotypic evidence suggests that stabilizing selection, which acts to reduce variance in the population without necessarily modifying the population mean, is widespread and relatively weak in comparison with estimates from other species.

  16. Differential privacy-based evaporative cooling feature selection and classification with relief-F and random forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le, Trang T; Simmons, W Kyle; Misaki, Masaya; Bodurka, Jerzy; White, Bill C; Savitz, Jonathan; McKinney, Brett A

    2017-09-15

    Classification of individuals into disease or clinical categories from high-dimensional biological data with low prediction error is an important challenge of statistical learning in bioinformatics. Feature selection can improve classification accuracy but must be incorporated carefully into cross-validation to avoid overfitting. Recently, feature selection methods based on differential privacy, such as differentially private random forests and reusable holdout sets, have been proposed. However, for domains such as bioinformatics, where the number of features is much larger than the number of observations p≫n , these differential privacy methods are susceptible to overfitting. We introduce private Evaporative Cooling, a stochastic privacy-preserving machine learning algorithm that uses Relief-F for feature selection and random forest for privacy preserving classification that also prevents overfitting. We relate the privacy-preserving threshold mechanism to a thermodynamic Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution, where the temperature represents the privacy threshold. We use the thermal statistical physics concept of Evaporative Cooling of atomic gases to perform backward stepwise privacy-preserving feature selection. On simulated data with main effects and statistical interactions, we compare accuracies on holdout and validation sets for three privacy-preserving methods: the reusable holdout, reusable holdout with random forest, and private Evaporative Cooling, which uses Relief-F feature selection and random forest classification. In simulations where interactions exist between attributes, private Evaporative Cooling provides higher classification accuracy without overfitting based on an independent validation set. In simulations without interactions, thresholdout with random forest and private Evaporative Cooling give comparable accuracies. We also apply these privacy methods to human brain resting-state fMRI data from a study of major depressive disorder. Code

  17. Implications of structural genomics target selection strategies: Pfam5000, whole genome, and random approaches

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chandonia, John-Marc; Brenner, Steven E.

    2004-07-14

    The structural genomics project is an international effort to determine the three-dimensional shapes of all important biological macromolecules, with a primary focus on proteins. Target proteins should be selected according to a strategy which is medically and biologically relevant, of good value, and tractable. As an option to consider, we present the Pfam5000 strategy, which involves selecting the 5000 most important families from the Pfam database as sources for targets. We compare the Pfam5000 strategy to several other proposed strategies that would require similar numbers of targets. These include including complete solution of several small to moderately sized bacterial proteomes, partial coverage of the human proteome, and random selection of approximately 5000 targets from sequenced genomes. We measure the impact that successful implementation of these strategies would have upon structural interpretation of the proteins in Swiss-Prot, TrEMBL, and 131 complete proteomes (including 10 of eukaryotes) from the Proteome Analysis database at EBI. Solving the structures of proteins from the 5000 largest Pfam families would allow accurate fold assignment for approximately 68 percent of all prokaryotic proteins (covering 59 percent of residues) and 61 percent of eukaryotic proteins (40 percent of residues). More fine-grained coverage which would allow accurate modeling of these proteins would require an order of magnitude more targets. The Pfam5000 strategy may be modified in several ways, for example to focus on larger families, bacterial sequences, or eukaryotic sequences; as long as secondary consideration is given to large families within Pfam, coverage results vary only slightly. In contrast, focusing structural genomics on a single tractable genome would have only a limited impact in structural knowledge of other proteomes: a significant fraction (about 30-40 percent of the proteins, and 40-60 percent of the residues) of each proteome is classified in small

  18. Directional and balancing selection in human beta-defensins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Armour John AL

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In primates, infection is an important force driving gene evolution, and this is reflected in the importance of infectious disease in human morbidity today. The beta-defensins are key components of the innate immune system, with antimicrobial and cell signalling roles, but also reproductive functions. Here we examine evolution of beta-defensins in catarrhine primates and variation within different human populations. Results We show that five beta-defensin genes that do not show copy number variation in humans show evidence of positive selection in catarrhine primates, and identify specific codons that have been under selective pressure. Direct haplotyping of DEFB127 in humans suggests long-term balancing selection: there are two highly diverged haplotype clades carrying different variants of a codon that, in primates, is positively selected. For DEFB132, we show that extensive diversity, including a four-state amino acid polymorphism (valine, isoleucine, alanine and threonine at position 93, is present in hunter-gatherer populations, both African and non-African, but not found in samples from agricultural populations. Conclusion Some, but not all, beta-defensin genes show positive selection in catarrhine primates. There is suggestive evidence of different selective pressures on these genes in humans, but the nature of the selective pressure remains unclear and is likely to differ between populations.

  19. Directional and balancing selection in human beta-defensins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollox, Edward J; Armour, John A L

    2008-04-16

    In primates, infection is an important force driving gene evolution, and this is reflected in the importance of infectious disease in human morbidity today. The beta-defensins are key components of the innate immune system, with antimicrobial and cell signalling roles, but also reproductive functions. Here we examine evolution of beta-defensins in catarrhine primates and variation within different human populations. We show that five beta-defensin genes that do not show copy number variation in humans show evidence of positive selection in catarrhine primates, and identify specific codons that have been under selective pressure. Direct haplotyping of DEFB127 in humans suggests long-term balancing selection: there are two highly diverged haplotype clades carrying different variants of a codon that, in primates, is positively selected. For DEFB132, we show that extensive diversity, including a four-state amino acid polymorphism (valine, isoleucine, alanine and threonine at position 93), is present in hunter-gatherer populations, both African and non-African, but not found in samples from agricultural populations. Some, but not all, beta-defensin genes show positive selection in catarrhine primates. There is suggestive evidence of different selective pressures on these genes in humans, but the nature of the selective pressure remains unclear and is likely to differ between populations.

  20. Parallel selection on TRPV6 in human populations

    OpenAIRE

    Hughes, David A; Tang, Kun; Strotmann, Rainer; Schöneberg, Torsten; Prenen, Jean; Nilius, Bernd; Stoneking, Mark

    2008-01-01

    We identified and examined a candidate gene for local directional selection in Europeans, TRPV6, and conclude that selection has acted on standing genetic variation at this locus, creating parallel soft sweep events in humans. A novel modification of the extended haplotype homozygosity (EHH) test was utilized, which compares EHH for a single allele across populations, to investigate the signature of selection at TRPV6 and neighboring linked loci in published data sets for Europeans, Asians an...

  1. Recent and ongoing selection in the human genome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Rasmus; Hellmann, Ines; Hubisz, Melissa

    2007-01-01

    The recent availability of genome-scale genotyping data has led to the identification of regions of the human genome that seem to have been targeted by selection. These findings have increased our understanding of the evolutionary forces that affect the human genome, have augmented our knowledge...... of gene function and promise to increase our understanding of the genetic basis of disease. However, inferences of selection are challenged by several confounding factors, especially the complex demographic history of human populations, and concordance between studies is variable. Although such studies...

  2. Principles in selecting human capital measurements and metrics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pharny D. Chrysler-Fox

    2014-09-01

    Research purpose: The study explored principles in selecting human capital measurements,drawing on the views and recommendations of human resource management professionals,all experts in human capital measurement. Motivation for the study: The motivation was to advance the understanding of selectingappropriate and strategic valid measurements, in order for human resource practitioners tocontribute to creating value and driving strategic change. Research design, approach and method: A qualitative approach, with purposively selectedcases from a selected panel of human capital measurement experts, generated a datasetthrough unstructured interviews, which were analysed thematically. Main findings: Nineteen themes were found. They represent a process that considers thecentrality of the business strategy and a systemic integration across multiple value chains inthe organisation through business partnering, in order to select measurements and generatemanagement level-appropriate information. Practical/managerial implications: Measurement practitioners, in partnership withmanagement from other functions, should integrate the business strategy across multiplevalue chains in order to select measurements. Analytics becomes critical in discoveringrelationships and formulating hypotheses to understand value creation. Higher educationinstitutions should produce graduates able to deal with systems thinking and to operatewithin complexity. Contribution: This study identified principles to select measurements and metrics. Noticeableis the move away from the interrelated scorecard perspectives to a systemic view of theorganisation in order to understand value creation. In addition, the findings may help toposition the human resource management function as a strategic asset.

  3. Human evolution: humanistic selection and looking to the future.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krsiak, Miloslav

    2006-10-01

    Cultural evolution has predominated over biological evolution in modern man (Homo sapiens sapiens). Cultural evolution differs from biological evolution not only by inheritance of acquired characteristics but also, as is proposed in the present essay, by another kind of selection mechanism. Whereas selection in biological evolution is executed according to a criterion of reproductive success (the natural selection), selection in cultural evolution appears to be carried out according to human and humanistic criteria (success or fitness in meeting human needs, interests and humanistic values--"humanistic selection"). Many humanistic needs or values do not seem to be prerequisite for reproductive success, yet some of them (e.g. a need for freedom) seem to be inborn. Innateness, humanistic selection (decisive at a community level) and hierarchy of some human needs, interests and values appear to give cultural evolution a generally upward trend although long periods of stagnation or even regression may occur. Modern humans appear to be still at the early stage of their cultural evolution. A further cultural evolution of man appears to be, in contrast to biological evolution, predictable (with an optimistic outlook) and testable. The problem is that the hopeful result of this test will probably be known only in the fairly remote future provided that this species will not become extinct before that.

  4. Natural selection and infectious disease in human populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karlsson, Elinor K.; Kwiatkowski, Dominic P.; Sabeti, Pardis C.

    2015-01-01

    The ancient biological 'arms race' between microbial pathogens and humans has shaped genetic variation in modern populations, and this has important implications for the growing field of medical genomics. As humans migrated throughout the world, populations encountered distinct pathogens, and natural selection increased the prevalence of alleles that are advantageous in the new ecosystems in both host and pathogens. This ancient history now influences human infectious disease susceptibility and microbiome homeostasis, and contributes to common diseases that show geographical disparities, such as autoimmune and metabolic disorders. Using new high-throughput technologies, analytical methods and expanding public data resources, the investigation of natural selection is leading to new insights into the function and dysfunction of human biology. PMID:24776769

  5. Translational selection in human: More pronounced in housekeeping genes

    KAUST Repository

    Ma, Lina

    2014-07-10

    Background: Translational selection is a ubiquitous and significant mechanism to regulate protein expression in prokaryotes and unicellular eukaryotes. Recent evidence has shown that translational selection is weakly operative in highly expressed genes in human and other vertebrates. However, it remains unclear whether translational selection acts differentially on human genes depending on their expression patterns.Results: Here we report that human housekeeping (HK) genes that are strictly defined as genes that are expressed ubiquitously and consistently in most or all tissues, are under stronger translational selection.Conclusions: These observations clearly show that translational selection is also closely associated with expression pattern. Our results suggest that human HK genes are more efficiently and/or accurately translated into proteins, which will inevitably open up a new understanding of HK genes and the regulation of gene expression.Reviewers: This article was reviewed by Yuan Yuan, Baylor College of Medicine; Han Liang, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (nominated by Dr Laura Landweber) Eugene Koonin, NCBI, NLM, NIH, United States of America Sandor Pongor, International Centre for Genetic Engineering and biotechnology (ICGEB), Italy. © 2014 Ma et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

  6. Selective activation of neuromuscular compartments within the human trapezius muscle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holtermann, A; Roeleveld, K; Mork, P J

    2009-01-01

    of the human trapezius muscle can be independently activated by voluntary command, indicating neuromuscular compartmentalization of the trapezius muscle. The independent activation of the upper and lower subdivisions of the trapezius is in accordance with the selective innervation by the fine cranial and main...... branch of the accessory nerve to the upper and lower subdivisions. These findings provide new insight into motor control characteristics, learning possibilities, and function of the clinically relevant human trapezius muscle....

  7. Non-random mating for selection with restricted rates of inbreeding and overlapping generations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sonesson, A.K.; Meuwissen, T.H.E.

    2002-01-01

    Minimum coancestry mating with a maximum of one offspring per mating pair (MC1) is compared with random mating schemes for populations with overlapping generations. Optimum contribution selection is used, whereby $\\\\\\\\Delta F$ is restricted. For schemes with $\\\\\\\\Delta F$ restricted to 0.25% per

  8. Applications of random forest feature selection for fine-scale genetic population assignment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sylvester, Emma V A; Bentzen, Paul; Bradbury, Ian R; Clément, Marie; Pearce, Jon; Horne, John; Beiko, Robert G

    2018-02-01

    Genetic population assignment used to inform wildlife management and conservation efforts requires panels of highly informative genetic markers and sensitive assignment tests. We explored the utility of machine-learning algorithms (random forest, regularized random forest and guided regularized random forest) compared with F ST ranking for selection of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) for fine-scale population assignment. We applied these methods to an unpublished SNP data set for Atlantic salmon ( Salmo salar ) and a published SNP data set for Alaskan Chinook salmon ( Oncorhynchus tshawytscha ). In each species, we identified the minimum panel size required to obtain a self-assignment accuracy of at least 90% using each method to create panels of 50-700 markers Panels of SNPs identified using random forest-based methods performed up to 7.8 and 11.2 percentage points better than F ST -selected panels of similar size for the Atlantic salmon and Chinook salmon data, respectively. Self-assignment accuracy ≥90% was obtained with panels of 670 and 384 SNPs for each data set, respectively, a level of accuracy never reached for these species using F ST -selected panels. Our results demonstrate a role for machine-learning approaches in marker selection across large genomic data sets to improve assignment for management and conservation of exploited populations.

  9. 40 CFR 761.306 - Sampling 1 meter square surfaces by random selection of halves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 30 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Sampling 1 meter square surfaces by...(b)(3) § 761.306 Sampling 1 meter square surfaces by random selection of halves. (a) Divide each 1 meter square portion where it is necessary to collect a surface wipe test sample into two equal (or as...

  10. Humans can consciously generate random number sequences: a possible test for artificial intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Persaud, Navindra

    2005-01-01

    Computer algorithms can only produce seemingly random or pseudorandom numbers whereas certain natural phenomena, such as the decay of radioactive particles, can be utilized to produce truly random numbers. In this study, the ability of humans to generate random numbers was tested in healthy adults. Subjects were simply asked to generate and dictate random numbers. Generated numbers were tested for uniformity, independence and information density. The results suggest that humans can generate random numbers that are uniformly distributed, independent of one another and unpredictable. If humans can generate sequences of random numbers then neural networks or forms of artificial intelligence, which are purported to function in ways essentially the same as the human brain, should also be able to generate sequences of random numbers. Elucidating the precise mechanism by which humans generate random number sequences and the underlying neural substrates may have implications in the cognitive science of decision-making. It is possible that humans use their random-generating neural machinery to make difficult decisions in which all expected outcomes are similar. It is also possible that certain people, perhaps those with neurological or psychiatric impairments, are less able or unable to generate random numbers. If the random-generating neural machinery is employed in decision making its impairment would have profound implications in matters of agency and free will.

  11. Hebbian Learning in a Random Network Captures Selectivity Properties of the Prefrontal Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindsay, Grace W.

    2017-01-01

    Complex cognitive behaviors, such as context-switching and rule-following, are thought to be supported by the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Neural activity in the PFC must thus be specialized to specific tasks while retaining flexibility. Nonlinear “mixed” selectivity is an important neurophysiological trait for enabling complex and context-dependent behaviors. Here we investigate (1) the extent to which the PFC exhibits computationally relevant properties, such as mixed selectivity, and (2) how such properties could arise via circuit mechanisms. We show that PFC cells recorded from male and female rhesus macaques during a complex task show a moderate level of specialization and structure that is not replicated by a model wherein cells receive random feedforward inputs. While random connectivity can be effective at generating mixed selectivity, the data show significantly more mixed selectivity than predicted by a model with otherwise matched parameters. A simple Hebbian learning rule applied to the random connectivity, however, increases mixed selectivity and enables the model to match the data more accurately. To explain how learning achieves this, we provide analysis along with a clear geometric interpretation of the impact of learning on selectivity. After learning, the model also matches the data on measures of noise, response density, clustering, and the distribution of selectivities. Of two styles of Hebbian learning tested, the simpler and more biologically plausible option better matches the data. These modeling results provide clues about how neural properties important for cognition can arise in a circuit and make clear experimental predictions regarding how various measures of selectivity would evolve during animal training. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The prefrontal cortex is a brain region believed to support the ability of animals to engage in complex behavior. How neurons in this area respond to stimuli—and in particular, to combinations of stimuli (

  12. Performance Evaluation of User Selection Protocols in Random Networks with Energy Harvesting and Hardware Impairments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tan Nhat Nguyen

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we evaluate performances of various user selection protocols under impact of hardware impairments. In the considered protocols, a Base Station (BS selects one of available Users (US to serve, while the remaining USs harvest the energy from the Radio Frequency (RF transmitted by the BS. We assume that all of the US randomly appear around the BS. In the Random Selection Protocol (RAN, the BS randomly selects a US to transmit the data. In the second proposed protocol, named Minimum Distance Protocol (MIND, the US that is nearest to the BS will be chosen. In the Optimal Selection Protocol (OPT, the US providing the highest channel gain between itself and the BS will be served. For performance evaluation, we derive exact and asymptotic closed-form expressions of average Outage Probability (OP over Rayleigh fading channels. We also consider average harvested energy per a US. Finally, Monte-Carlo simulations are then performed to verify the theoretical results.

  13. Sexual Selection and the Evolution of Human Sex Differences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David C. Geary

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Darwin’s (1871 theory of sexual selection and the associated mechanisms of intrasexual competition (e.g., male-male competition and intersexual choice (e.g., female choice of mates have guided the scientific study of sex differences in hundreds of non-human species. These mechanisms and several recent advances in our understanding of the evolution and expression of sex differences in non-human species are described. The usefulness of this theory for approaching the study human sex differences is illustrated with discussion of patterns of women’s mate preferences and choices and with discussion of men’s one-on-one and coalitional competition. A comparison of these aspects of intersexual choice and intrasexual competition in humans and non-human species is provided, as is discussion of cultural variation in the expression of these behaviors. cultural influences (Maccoby & Jacklin, 1974.

  14. Simulated Performance Evaluation of a Selective Tracker Through Random Scenario Generation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hussain, Dil Muhammad Akbar

    2006-01-01

    performance assessment. Therefore, a random target motion scenario is adopted. Its implementation in particular for testing the proposed selective track splitting algorithm using Kalman filters is investigated through a number of performance parameters which gives the activity profile of the tracking scenario......  The paper presents a simulation study on the performance of a target tracker using selective track splitting filter algorithm through a random scenario implemented on a digital signal processor.  In a typical track splitting filter all the observation which fall inside a likelihood ellipse...... are used for update, however, in our proposed selective track splitting filter less number of observations are used for track update.  Much of the previous performance work [1] has been done on specific (deterministic) scenarios. One of the reasons for considering the specific scenarios, which were...

  15. A Comparison between Human Selected, Derived and System ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    admpather

    Using a prototype implementation of our scheme, we compare the results of human-selected, derived passwords and system generated to reveal the practical viability of our approach in terms of results achieved, ease of implementation and use. Keywords: Security, Biometric, Behavioral, Keystroke dynamics, Password.

  16. A Comparison between Human Selected, Derived and System ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Using a prototype implementation of our scheme, we compare the results of human-selected, derived passwords and system generated to reveal the practical viability of our approach in terms of results achieved, ease of implementation and use. Keywords: Security, Biometric, Behavioral, Keystroke dynamics, Password ...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  18. Parallel selection on TRPV6 in human populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David A Hughes

    Full Text Available We identified and examined a candidate gene for local directional selection in Europeans, TRPV6, and conclude that selection has acted on standing genetic variation at this locus, creating parallel soft sweep events in humans. A novel modification of the extended haplotype homozygosity (EHH test was utilized, which compares EHH for a single allele across populations, to investigate the signature of selection at TRPV6 and neighboring linked loci in published data sets for Europeans, Asians and African-Americans, as well as in newly-obtained sequence data for additional populations. We find that all non-African populations carry a signature of selection on the same haplotype at the TRPV6 locus. The selective footprints, however, are significantly differentiated between non-African populations and estimated to be younger than an ancestral population of non-Africans. The possibility of a single selection event occurring in an ancestral population of non-Africans was tested by simulations and rejected. The putatively-selected TRPV6 haplotype contains three candidate sites for functional differences, namely derived non-synonymous substitutions C157R, M378V and M681T. Potential functional differences between the ancestral and derived TRPV6 proteins were investigated by cloning the ancestral and derived forms, transfecting cell lines, and carrying out electrophysiology experiments via patch clamp analysis. No statistically-significant differences in biophysical channel function were found, although one property of the protein, namely Ca(2+ dependent inactivation, may show functionally relevant differences between the ancestral and derived forms. Although the reason for selection on this locus remains elusive, this is the first demonstration of a widespread parallel selection event acting on standing genetic variation in humans, and highlights the utility of between population EHH statistics.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  20. Parallel selection on TRPV6 in human populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, David A; Tang, Kun; Strotmann, Rainer; Schöneberg, Torsten; Prenen, Jean; Nilius, Bernd; Stoneking, Mark

    2008-02-27

    We identified and examined a candidate gene for local directional selection in Europeans, TRPV6, and conclude that selection has acted on standing genetic variation at this locus, creating parallel soft sweep events in humans. A novel modification of the extended haplotype homozygosity (EHH) test was utilized, which compares EHH for a single allele across populations, to investigate the signature of selection at TRPV6 and neighboring linked loci in published data sets for Europeans, Asians and African-Americans, as well as in newly-obtained sequence data for additional populations. We find that all non-African populations carry a signature of selection on the same haplotype at the TRPV6 locus. The selective footprints, however, are significantly differentiated between non-African populations and estimated to be younger than an ancestral population of non-Africans. The possibility of a single selection event occurring in an ancestral population of non-Africans was tested by simulations and rejected. The putatively-selected TRPV6 haplotype contains three candidate sites for functional differences, namely derived non-synonymous substitutions C157R, M378V and M681T. Potential functional differences between the ancestral and derived TRPV6 proteins were investigated by cloning the ancestral and derived forms, transfecting cell lines, and carrying out electrophysiology experiments via patch clamp analysis. No statistically-significant differences in biophysical channel function were found, although one property of the protein, namely Ca(2+) dependent inactivation, may show functionally relevant differences between the ancestral and derived forms. Although the reason for selection on this locus remains elusive, this is the first demonstration of a widespread parallel selection event acting on standing genetic variation in humans, and highlights the utility of between population EHH statistics.

  1. Continuous-Time Mean-Variance Portfolio Selection with Random Horizon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yu, Zhiyong

    2013-01-01

    This paper examines the continuous-time mean-variance optimal portfolio selection problem with random market parameters and random time horizon. Treating this problem as a linearly constrained stochastic linear-quadratic optimal control problem, I explicitly derive the efficient portfolios and efficient frontier in closed forms based on the solutions of two backward stochastic differential equations. Some related issues such as a minimum variance portfolio and a mutual fund theorem are also addressed. All the results are markedly different from those in the problem with deterministic exit time. A key part of my analysis involves proving the global solvability of a stochastic Riccati equation, which is interesting in its own right

  2. Continuous-Time Mean-Variance Portfolio Selection with Random Horizon

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yu, Zhiyong, E-mail: yuzhiyong@sdu.edu.cn [Shandong University, School of Mathematics (China)

    2013-12-15

    This paper examines the continuous-time mean-variance optimal portfolio selection problem with random market parameters and random time horizon. Treating this problem as a linearly constrained stochastic linear-quadratic optimal control problem, I explicitly derive the efficient portfolios and efficient frontier in closed forms based on the solutions of two backward stochastic differential equations. Some related issues such as a minimum variance portfolio and a mutual fund theorem are also addressed. All the results are markedly different from those in the problem with deterministic exit time. A key part of my analysis involves proving the global solvability of a stochastic Riccati equation, which is interesting in its own right.

  3. Global patterns of diversity and selection in human tyrosinase gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudjashov, Georgi; Villems, Richard; Kivisild, Toomas

    2013-01-01

    Global variation in skin pigmentation is one of the most striking examples of environmental adaptation in humans. More than two hundred loci have been identified as candidate genes in model organisms and a few tens of these have been found to be significantly associated with human skin pigmentation in genome-wide association studies. However, the evolutionary history of different pigmentation genes is rather complex: some loci have been subjected to strong positive selection, while others evolved under the relaxation of functional constraints in low UV environment. Here we report the results of a global study of the human tyrosinase gene, which is one of the key enzymes in melanin production, to assess the role of its variation in the evolution of skin pigmentation differences among human populations. We observe a higher rate of non-synonymous polymorphisms in the European sample consistent with the relaxation of selective constraints. A similar pattern was previously observed in the MC1R gene and concurs with UV radiation-driven model of skin color evolution by which mutations leading to lower melanin levels and decreased photoprotection are subject to purifying selection at low latitudes while being tolerated or even favored at higher latitudes because they facilitate UV-dependent vitamin D production. Our coalescent date estimates suggest that the non-synonymous variants, which are frequent in Europe and North Africa, are recent and have emerged after the separation of East and West Eurasian populations.

  4. Pathogen-driven selection in the human genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cagliani, Rachele; Sironi, Manuela

    2013-01-01

    Infectious diseases and epidemics have always accompanied and characterized human history, representing one of the main causes of death. Even today, despite progress in sanitation and medical research, infections are estimated to account for about 15% of deaths. The hypothesis whereby infectious diseases have been acting as a powerful selective pressure was formulated long ago, but it was not until the availability of large-scale genetic data and the development of novel methods to study molecular evolution that we could assess how pervasively infectious agents have shaped human genetic diversity. Indeed, recent evidences indicated that among the diverse environmental factors that acted as selective pressures during the evolution of our species, pathogen load had the strongest influence. Beside the textbook example of the major histocompatibility complex, selection signatures left by pathogen-exerted pressure can be identified at several human loci, including genes not directly involved in immune response. In the future, high-throughput technologies and the availability of genetic data from different populations are likely to provide novel insights into the evolutionary relationships between the human host and its pathogens. Hopefully, this will help identify the genetic determinants modulating the susceptibility to infectious diseases and will translate into new treatment strategies.

  5. A map of recent positive selection in the human genome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin F Voight

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available The identification of signals of very recent positive selection provides information about the adaptation of modern humans to local conditions. We report here on a genome-wide scan for signals of very recent positive selection in favor of variants that have not yet reached fixation. We describe a new analytical method for scanning single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP data for signals of recent selection, and apply this to data from the International HapMap Project. In all three continental groups we find widespread signals of recent positive selection. Most signals are region-specific, though a significant excess are shared across groups. Contrary to some earlier low resolution studies that suggested a paucity of recent selection in sub-Saharan Africans, we find that by some measures our strongest signals of selection are from the Yoruba population. Finally, since these signals indicate the existence of genetic variants that have substantially different fitnesses, they must indicate loci that are the source of significant phenotypic variation. Though the relevant phenotypes are generally not known, such loci should be of particular interest in mapping studies of complex traits. For this purpose we have developed a set of SNPs that can be used to tag the strongest approximately 250 signals of recent selection in each population.

  6. Natural Selection Reduced Diversity on Human Y Chromosomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson Sayres, Melissa A.; Lohmueller, Kirk E.; Nielsen, Rasmus

    2014-01-01

    The human Y chromosome exhibits surprisingly low levels of genetic diversity. This could result from neutral processes if the effective population size of males is reduced relative to females due to a higher variance in the number of offspring from males than from females. Alternatively, selection acting on new mutations, and affecting linked neutral sites, could reduce variability on the Y chromosome. Here, using genome-wide analyses of X, Y, autosomal and mitochondrial DNA, in combination with extensive population genetic simulations, we show that low observed Y chromosome variability is not consistent with a purely neutral model. Instead, we show that models of purifying selection are consistent with observed Y diversity. Further, the number of sites estimated to be under purifying selection greatly exceeds the number of Y-linked coding sites, suggesting the importance of the highly repetitive ampliconic regions. While we show that purifying selection removing deleterious mutations can explain the low diversity on the Y chromosome, we cannot exclude the possibility that positive selection acting on beneficial mutations could have also reduced diversity in linked neutral regions, and may have contributed to lowering human Y chromosome diversity. Because the functional significance of the ampliconic regions is poorly understood, our findings should motivate future research in this area. PMID:24415951

  7. Topology-selective jamming of fully-connected, code-division random-access networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polydoros, Andreas; Cheng, Unjeng

    1990-01-01

    The purpose is to introduce certain models of topology selective stochastic jamming and examine its impact on a class of fully-connected, spread-spectrum, slotted ALOHA-type random access networks. The theory covers dedicated as well as half-duplex units. The dominant role of the spatial duty factor is established, and connections with the dual concept of time selective jamming are discussed. The optimal choices of coding rate and link access parameters (from the users' side) and the jamming spatial fraction are numerically established for DS and FH spreading.

  8. Random drift versus selection in academic vocabulary: an evolutionary analysis of published keywords.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R Alexander Bentley

    Full Text Available The evolution of vocabulary in academic publishing is characterized via keyword frequencies recorded in the ISI Web of Science citations database. In four distinct case-studies, evolutionary analysis of keyword frequency change through time is compared to a model of random copying used as the null hypothesis, such that selection may be identified against it. The case studies from the physical sciences indicate greater selection in keyword choice than in the social sciences. Similar evolutionary analyses can be applied to a wide range of phenomena; wherever the popularity of multiple items through time has been recorded, as with web searches, or sales of popular music and books, for example.

  9. Random drift versus selection in academic vocabulary: an evolutionary analysis of published keywords.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bentley, R Alexander

    2008-08-27

    The evolution of vocabulary in academic publishing is characterized via keyword frequencies recorded in the ISI Web of Science citations database. In four distinct case-studies, evolutionary analysis of keyword frequency change through time is compared to a model of random copying used as the null hypothesis, such that selection may be identified against it. The case studies from the physical sciences indicate greater selection in keyword choice than in the social sciences. Similar evolutionary analyses can be applied to a wide range of phenomena; wherever the popularity of multiple items through time has been recorded, as with web searches, or sales of popular music and books, for example.

  10. Targets of balancing selection in the human genome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andrés, Aida M; Hubisz, Melissa J; Indap, Amit

    2009-01-01

    Balancing selection is potentially an important biological force for maintaining advantageous genetic diversity in populations, including variation that is responsible for long-term adaptation to the environment. By serving as a means to maintain genetic variation, it may be particularly relevant...... to maintaining phenotypic variation in natural populations. Nevertheless, its prevalence and specific targets in the human genome remain largely unknown. We have analyzed the patterns of diversity and divergence of 13,400 genes in two human populations using an unbiased single-nucleotide polymorphism data set......, a genome-wide approach, and a method that incorporates demography in neutrality tests. We identified an unbiased catalog of genes with signatures of long-term balancing selection, which includes immunity genes as well as genes encoding keratins and membrane channels; the catalog also shows enrichment...

  11. Selectively altering belief formation in the human brain

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  12. Cellular evidence for selfish spermatogonial selection in aged human testes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maher, G J; Goriely, A; Wilkie, A O M

    2014-05-01

    Owing to a recent trend for delayed paternity, the genomic integrity of spermatozoa of older men has become a focus of increased interest. Older fathers are at higher risk for their children to be born with several monogenic conditions collectively termed paternal age effect (PAE) disorders, which include achondroplasia, Apert syndrome and Costello syndrome. These disorders are caused by specific mutations originating almost exclusively from the male germline, in genes encoding components of the tyrosine kinase receptor/RAS/MAPK signalling pathway. These particular mutations, occurring randomly during mitotic divisions of spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs), are predicted to confer a selective/growth advantage on the mutant SSC. This selective advantage leads to a clonal expansion of the mutant cells over time, which generates mutant spermatozoa at levels significantly above the background mutation rate. This phenomenon, termed selfish spermatogonial selection, is likely to occur in all men. In rare cases, probably because of additional mutational events, selfish spermatogonial selection may lead to spermatocytic seminoma. The studies that initially predicted the clonal nature of selfish spermatogonial selection were based on DNA analysis, rather than the visualization of mutant clones in intact testes. In a recent study that aimed to identify these clones directly, we stained serial sections of fixed testes for expression of melanoma antigen family A4 (MAGEA4), a marker of spermatogonia. A subset of seminiferous tubules with an appearance and distribution compatible with the predicted mutant clones were identified. In these tubules, termed 'immunopositive tubules', there is an increased density of spermatogonia positive for markers related to selfish selection (FGFR3) and SSC self-renewal (phosphorylated AKT). Here we detail the properties of the immunopositive tubules and how they relate to the predicted mutant clones, as well as discussing the utility of

  13. Comparative Evaluations of Randomly Selected Four Point-of-Care Glucometer Devices in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolde, Mistire; Tarekegn, Getahun; Kebede, Tedla

    2018-05-01

    Point-of-care glucometer (PoCG) devices play a significant role in self-monitoring of the blood sugar level, particularly in the follow-up of high blood sugar therapeutic response. The aim of this study was to evaluate blood glucose test results performed with four randomly selected glucometers on diabetes and control subjects versus standard wet chemistry (hexokinase) methods in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. A prospective cross-sectional study was conducted on randomly selected 200 study participants (100 participants with diabetes and 100 healthy controls). Four randomly selected PoCG devices (CareSens N, DIAVUE Prudential, On Call Extra, i-QARE DS-W) were evaluated against hexokinase method and ISO 15197:2003 and ISO 15197:2013 standards. The minimum and maximum blood sugar values were recorded by CareSens N (21 mg/dl) and hexokinase method (498.8 mg/dl), respectively. The mean sugar values of all PoCG devices except On Call Extra showed significant differences compared with the reference hexokinase method. Meanwhile, all four PoCG devices had strong positive relationship (>80%) with the reference method (hexokinase). On the other hand, none of the four PoCG devices fulfilled the minimum accuracy measurement set by ISO 15197:2003 and ISO 15197:2013 standards. In addition, the linear regression analysis revealed that all four selected PoCG overestimated the glucose concentrations. The overall evaluation of the selected four PoCG measurements were poorly correlated with standard reference method. Therefore, before introducing PoCG devices to the market, there should be a standardized evaluation platform for validation. Further similar large-scale studies on other PoCG devices also need to be undertaken.

  14. Objective Model Selection for Identifying the Human Feedforward Response in Manual Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drop, Frank M; Pool, Daan M; van Paassen, Marinus Rene M; Mulder, Max; Bulthoff, Heinrich H

    2018-01-01

    Realistic manual control tasks typically involve predictable target signals and random disturbances. The human controller (HC) is hypothesized to use a feedforward control strategy for target-following, in addition to feedback control for disturbance-rejection. Little is known about human feedforward control, partly because common system identification methods have difficulty in identifying whether, and (if so) how, the HC applies a feedforward strategy. In this paper, an identification procedure is presented that aims at an objective model selection for identifying the human feedforward response, using linear time-invariant autoregressive with exogenous input models. A new model selection criterion is proposed to decide on the model order (number of parameters) and the presence of feedforward in addition to feedback. For a range of typical control tasks, it is shown by means of Monte Carlo computer simulations that the classical Bayesian information criterion (BIC) leads to selecting models that contain a feedforward path from data generated by a pure feedback model: "false-positive" feedforward detection. To eliminate these false-positives, the modified BIC includes an additional penalty on model complexity. The appropriate weighting is found through computer simulations with a hypothesized HC model prior to performing a tracking experiment. Experimental human-in-the-loop data will be considered in future work. With appropriate weighting, the method correctly identifies the HC dynamics in a wide range of control tasks, without false-positive results.

  15. Cultural selection drives the evolution of human communication systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamariz, Monica; Ellison, T Mark; Barr, Dale J; Fay, Nicolas

    2014-08-07

    Human communication systems evolve culturally, but the evolutionary mechanisms that drive this evolution are not well understood. Against a baseline that communication variants spread in a population following neutral evolutionary dynamics (also known as drift models), we tested the role of two cultural selection models: coordination- and content-biased. We constructed a parametrized mixed probabilistic model of the spread of communicative variants in four 8-person laboratory micro-societies engaged in a simple communication game. We found that selectionist models, working in combination, explain the majority of the empirical data. The best-fitting parameter setting includes an egocentric bias and a content bias, suggesting that participants retained their own previously used communicative variants unless they encountered a superior (content-biased) variant, in which case it was adopted. This novel pattern of results suggests that (i) a theory of the cultural evolution of human communication systems must integrate selectionist models and (ii) human communication systems are functionally adaptive complex systems.

  16. Selection bias and subject refusal in a cluster-randomized controlled trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rochelle Yang

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Selection bias and non-participation bias are major methodological concerns which impact external validity. Cluster-randomized controlled trials are especially prone to selection bias as it is impractical to blind clusters to their allocation into intervention or control. This study assessed the impact of selection bias in a large cluster-randomized controlled trial. Methods The Improved Cardiovascular Risk Reduction to Enhance Rural Primary Care (ICARE study examined the impact of a remote pharmacist-led intervention in twelve medical offices. To assess eligibility, a standardized form containing patient demographics and medical information was completed for each screened patient. Eligible patients were approached by the study coordinator for recruitment. Both the study coordinator and the patient were aware of the site’s allocation prior to consent. Patients who consented or declined to participate were compared across control and intervention arms for differing characteristics. Statistical significance was determined using a two-tailed, equal variance t-test and a chi-square test with adjusted Bonferroni p-values. Results were adjusted for random cluster variation. Results There were 2749 completed screening forms returned to research staff with 461 subjects who had either consented or declined participation. Patients with poorly controlled diabetes were found to be significantly more likely to decline participation in intervention sites compared to those in control sites. A higher mean diastolic blood pressure was seen in patients with uncontrolled hypertension who declined in the control sites compared to those who declined in the intervention sites. However, these findings were no longer significant after adjustment for random variation among the sites. After this adjustment, females were now found to be significantly more likely to consent than males (odds ratio = 1.41; 95% confidence interval = 1.03, 1

  17. Fuzzy Random λ-Mean SAD Portfolio Selection Problem: An Ant Colony Optimization Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thakur, Gour Sundar Mitra; Bhattacharyya, Rupak; Mitra, Swapan Kumar

    2010-10-01

    To reach the investment goal, one has to select a combination of securities among different portfolios containing large number of securities. Only the past records of each security do not guarantee the future return. As there are many uncertain factors which directly or indirectly influence the stock market and there are also some newer stock markets which do not have enough historical data, experts' expectation and experience must be combined with the past records to generate an effective portfolio selection model. In this paper the return of security is assumed to be Fuzzy Random Variable Set (FRVS), where returns are set of random numbers which are in turn fuzzy numbers. A new λ-Mean Semi Absolute Deviation (λ-MSAD) portfolio selection model is developed. The subjective opinions of the investors to the rate of returns of each security are taken into consideration by introducing a pessimistic-optimistic parameter vector λ. λ-Mean Semi Absolute Deviation (λ-MSAD) model is preferred as it follows absolute deviation of the rate of returns of a portfolio instead of the variance as the measure of the risk. As this model can be reduced to Linear Programming Problem (LPP) it can be solved much faster than quadratic programming problems. Ant Colony Optimization (ACO) is used for solving the portfolio selection problem. ACO is a paradigm for designing meta-heuristic algorithms for combinatorial optimization problem. Data from BSE is used for illustration.

  18. From Protocols to Publications: A Study in Selective Reporting of Outcomes in Randomized Trials in Oncology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raghav, Kanwal Pratap Singh; Mahajan, Sminil; Yao, James C.; Hobbs, Brian P.; Berry, Donald A.; Pentz, Rebecca D.; Tam, Alda; Hong, Waun K.; Ellis, Lee M.; Abbruzzese, James; Overman, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose The decision by journals to append protocols to published reports of randomized trials was a landmark event in clinical trial reporting. However, limited information is available on how this initiative effected transparency and selective reporting of clinical trial data. Methods We analyzed 74 oncology-based randomized trials published in Journal of Clinical Oncology, the New England Journal of Medicine, and The Lancet in 2012. To ascertain integrity of reporting, we compared published reports with their respective appended protocols with regard to primary end points, nonprimary end points, unplanned end points, and unplanned analyses. Results A total of 86 primary end points were reported in 74 randomized trials; nine trials had greater than one primary end point. Nine trials (12.2%) had some discrepancy between their planned and published primary end points. A total of 579 nonprimary end points (median, seven per trial) were planned, of which 373 (64.4%; median, five per trial) were reported. A significant positive correlation was found between the number of planned and nonreported nonprimary end points (Spearman r = 0.66; P < .001). Twenty-eight studies (37.8%) reported a total of 65 unplanned end points; 52 (80.0%) of which were not identified as unplanned. Thirty-one (41.9%) and 19 (25.7%) of 74 trials reported a total of 52 unplanned analyses involving primary end points and 33 unplanned analyses involving nonprimary end points, respectively. Studies reported positive unplanned end points and unplanned analyses more frequently than negative outcomes in abstracts (unplanned end points odds ratio, 6.8; P = .002; unplanned analyses odd ratio, 8.4; P = .007). Conclusion Despite public and reviewer access to protocols, selective outcome reporting persists and is a major concern in the reporting of randomized clinical trials. To foster credible evidence-based medicine, additional initiatives are needed to minimize selective reporting. PMID:26304898

  19. Optimization of the Dutch Matrix Test by Random Selection of Sentences From a Preselected Subset

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rolph Houben

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Matrix tests are available for speech recognition testing in many languages. For an accurate measurement, a steep psychometric function of the speech materials is required. For existing tests, it would be beneficial if it were possible to further optimize the available materials by increasing the function’s steepness. The objective is to show if the steepness of the psychometric function of an existing matrix test can be increased by selecting a homogeneous subset of recordings with the steepest sentence-based psychometric functions. We took data from a previous multicenter evaluation of the Dutch matrix test (45 normal-hearing listeners. Based on half of the data set, first the sentences (140 out of 311 with a similar speech reception threshold and with the steepest psychometric function (≥9.7%/dB were selected. Subsequently, the steepness of the psychometric function for this selection was calculated from the remaining (unused second half of the data set. The calculation showed that the slope increased from 10.2%/dB to 13.7%/dB. The resulting subset did not allow the construction of enough balanced test lists. Therefore, the measurement procedure was changed to randomly select the sentences during testing. Random selection may interfere with a representative occurrence of phonemes. However, in our material, the median phonemic occurrence remained close to that of the original test. This finding indicates that phonemic occurrence is not a critical factor. The work highlights the possibility that existing speech tests might be improved by selecting sentences with a steep psychometric function.

  20. Using Random Forests to Select Optimal Input Variables for Short-Term Wind Speed Forecasting Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hui Wang

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Achieving relatively high-accuracy short-term wind speed forecasting estimates is a precondition for the construction and grid-connected operation of wind power forecasting systems for wind farms. Currently, most research is focused on the structure of forecasting models and does not consider the selection of input variables, which can have significant impacts on forecasting performance. This paper presents an input variable selection method for wind speed forecasting models. The candidate input variables for various leading periods are selected and random forests (RF is employed to evaluate the importance of all variable as features. The feature subset with the best evaluation performance is selected as the optimal feature set. Then, kernel-based extreme learning machine is constructed to evaluate the performance of input variables selection based on RF. The results of the case study show that by removing the uncorrelated and redundant features, RF effectively extracts the most strongly correlated set of features from the candidate input variables. By finding the optimal feature combination to represent the original information, RF simplifies the structure of the wind speed forecasting model, shortens the training time required, and substantially improves the model’s accuracy and generalization ability, demonstrating that the input variables selected by RF are effective.

  1. From Protocols to Publications: A Study in Selective Reporting of Outcomes in Randomized Trials in Oncology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raghav, Kanwal Pratap Singh; Mahajan, Sminil; Yao, James C; Hobbs, Brian P; Berry, Donald A; Pentz, Rebecca D; Tam, Alda; Hong, Waun K; Ellis, Lee M; Abbruzzese, James; Overman, Michael J

    2015-11-01

    The decision by journals to append protocols to published reports of randomized trials was a landmark event in clinical trial reporting. However, limited information is available on how this initiative effected transparency and selective reporting of clinical trial data. We analyzed 74 oncology-based randomized trials published in Journal of Clinical Oncology, the New England Journal of Medicine, and The Lancet in 2012. To ascertain integrity of reporting, we compared published reports with their respective appended protocols with regard to primary end points, nonprimary end points, unplanned end points, and unplanned analyses. A total of 86 primary end points were reported in 74 randomized trials; nine trials had greater than one primary end point. Nine trials (12.2%) had some discrepancy between their planned and published primary end points. A total of 579 nonprimary end points (median, seven per trial) were planned, of which 373 (64.4%; median, five per trial) were reported. A significant positive correlation was found between the number of planned and nonreported nonprimary end points (Spearman r = 0.66; P medicine, additional initiatives are needed to minimize selective reporting. © 2015 by American Society of Clinical Oncology.

  2. Infinite conditional random fields for human behavior analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bousmalis, Konstantinos; Zafeiriou, Stefanos; Morency, Louis-Philippe; Pantic, Maja

    Hidden conditional random fields (HCRFs) are discriminative latent variable models that have been shown to successfully learn the hidden structure of a given classification problem (provided an appropriate validation of the number of hidden states). In this brief, we present the infinite HCRF

  3. On theoretical models of gene expression evolution with random genetic drift and natural selection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Osamu Ogasawara

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available The relative contributions of natural selection and random genetic drift are a major source of debate in the study of gene expression evolution, which is hypothesized to serve as a bridge from molecular to phenotypic evolution. It has been suggested that the conflict between views is caused by the lack of a definite model of the neutral hypothesis, which can describe the long-run behavior of evolutionary change in mRNA abundance. Therefore previous studies have used inadequate analogies with the neutral prediction of other phenomena, such as amino acid or nucleotide sequence evolution, as the null hypothesis of their statistical inference.In this study, we introduced two novel theoretical models, one based on neutral drift and the other assuming natural selection, by focusing on a common property of the distribution of mRNA abundance among a variety of eukaryotic cells, which reflects the result of long-term evolution. Our results demonstrated that (1 our models can reproduce two independently found phenomena simultaneously: the time development of gene expression divergence and Zipf's law of the transcriptome; (2 cytological constraints can be explicitly formulated to describe long-term evolution; (3 the model assuming that natural selection optimized relative mRNA abundance was more consistent with previously published observations than the model of optimized absolute mRNA abundances.The models introduced in this study give a formulation of evolutionary change in the mRNA abundance of each gene as a stochastic process, on the basis of previously published observations. This model provides a foundation for interpreting observed data in studies of gene expression evolution, including identifying an adequate time scale for discriminating the effect of natural selection from that of random genetic drift of selectively neutral variations.

  4. Characteristics of spectro-temporal modulation frequency selectivity in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oetjen, Arne; Verhey, Jesko L

    2017-03-01

    There is increasing evidence that the auditory system shows frequency selectivity for spectro-temporal modulations. A recent study of the authors has shown spectro-temporal modulation masking patterns that were in agreement with the hypothesis of spectro-temporal modulation filters in the human auditory system [Oetjen and Verhey (2015). J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 137(2), 714-723]. In the present study, that experimental data and additional data were used to model this spectro-temporal frequency selectivity. The additional data were collected to investigate to what extent the spectro-temporal modulation-frequency selectivity results from a combination of a purely temporal amplitude-modulation filter and a purely spectral amplitude-modulation filter. In contrast to the previous study, thresholds were measured for masker and target modulations with opposite directions, i.e., an upward pointing target modulation and a downward pointing masker modulation. The comparison of this data set with previous corresponding data with the same direction from target and masker modulations indicate that a specific spectro-temporal modulation filter is required to simulate all aspects of spectro-temporal modulation frequency selectivity. A model using a modified Gabor filter with a purely temporal and a purely spectral filter predicts the spectro-temporal modulation masking data.

  5. Tense Usage in Selected Humanities and Science Dissertations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geoffrey M. Maroko

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Graduate students are usually not sure of the appropriate tense to use in each rhetorical section of their dissertations in their disciplines. Even style guides provide little information regarding tense usage in academic texts. This paper describes a study in which frequency and usage of types of tense were compared in selected dissertations from the humanities and sciences drawn from Kenyan Public Universities. It was found that graduate research students in both humanities and sciences preferred the simple present and simple past as primary tense forms. It also emerged that authors have to alternate verb tenses even in the same rhetorical section of a dissertation to achieve particular communicative purposes. Suggesting that choices for tense in dissertations are a function of the epistemology and ideology of the disciplines, the paper proposes a genre-based approach to teaching those preparing to write their dissertations.

  6. Assessing the accuracy and stability of variable selection methods for random forest modeling in ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox, Eric W; Hill, Ryan A; Leibowitz, Scott G; Olsen, Anthony R; Thornbrugh, Darren J; Weber, Marc H

    2017-07-01

    Random forest (RF) modeling has emerged as an important statistical learning method in ecology due to its exceptional predictive performance. However, for large and complex ecological data sets, there is limited guidance on variable selection methods for RF modeling. Typically, either a preselected set of predictor variables are used or stepwise procedures are employed which iteratively remove variables according to their importance measures. This paper investigates the application of variable selection methods to RF models for predicting probable biological stream condition. Our motivating data set consists of the good/poor condition of n = 1365 stream survey sites from the 2008/2009 National Rivers and Stream Assessment, and a large set (p = 212) of landscape features from the StreamCat data set as potential predictors. We compare two types of RF models: a full variable set model with all 212 predictors and a reduced variable set model selected using a backward elimination approach. We assess model accuracy using RF's internal out-of-bag estimate, and a cross-validation procedure with validation folds external to the variable selection process. We also assess the stability of the spatial predictions generated by the RF models to changes in the number of predictors and argue that model selection needs to consider both accuracy and stability. The results suggest that RF modeling is robust to the inclusion of many variables of moderate to low importance. We found no substantial improvement in cross-validated accuracy as a result of variable reduction. Moreover, the backward elimination procedure tended to select too few variables and exhibited numerous issues such as upwardly biased out-of-bag accuracy estimates and instabilities in the spatial predictions. We use simulations to further support and generalize results from the analysis of real data. A main purpose of this work is to elucidate issues of model selection bias and instability to ecologists interested in

  7. Analysis and applications of a frequency selective surface via a random distribution method

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xie Shao-Yi; Huang Jing-Jian; Yuan Nai-Chang; Liu Li-Guo

    2014-01-01

    A novel frequency selective surface (FSS) for reducing radar cross section (RCS) is proposed in this paper. This FSS is based on the random distribution method, so it can be called random surface. In this paper, the stacked patches serving as periodic elements are employed for RCS reduction. Previous work has demonstrated the efficiency by utilizing the microstrip patches, especially for the reflectarray. First, the relevant theory of the method is described. Then a sample of a three-layer variable-sized stacked patch random surface with a dimension of 260 mm×260 mm is simulated, fabricated, and measured in order to demonstrate the validity of the proposed design. For the normal incidence, the 8-dB RCS reduction can be achieved both by the simulation and the measurement in 8 GHz–13 GHz. The oblique incidence of 30° is also investigated, in which the 7-dB RCS reduction can be obtained in a frequency range of 8 GHz–14 GHz. (condensed matter: electronic structure, electrical, magnetic, and optical properties)

  8. Disentangling the effects of demography and selection in human history.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stajich, Jason E; Hahn, Matthew W

    2005-01-01

    Demographic events affect all genes in a genome, whereas natural selection has only local effects. Using publicly available data from 151 loci sequenced in both European-American and African-American populations, we attempt to distinguish the effects of demography and selection. To analyze large sets of population genetic data such as this one, we introduce "Perlymorphism," a Unix-based suite of analysis tools. Our analyses show that the demographic histories of human populations can account for a large proportion of effects on the level and frequency of variation across the genome. The African-American population shows both a higher level of nucleotide diversity and more negative values of Tajima's D statistic than does a European-American population. Using coalescent simulations, we show that the significantly negative values of the D statistic in African-Americans and the positive values in European-Americans are well explained by relatively simple models of population admixture and bottleneck, respectively. Working within these nonequilibrium frameworks, we are still able to show deviations from neutral expectations at a number of loci, including ABO and TRPV6. In addition, we show that the frequency spectrum of mutations--corrected for levels of polymorphism--is correlated with recombination rate only in European-Americans. These results are consistent with repeated selective sweeps in non-African populations, in agreement with recent reports using microsatellite data.

  9. Cytochrome P450 isoform selectivity in human hepatic theobromine metabolism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gates, Simon; Miners, John O

    1999-01-01

    Aims The plasma clearance of theobromine (TB; 3,7-dimethylxanthine) is known to be induced in cigarette smokers. To determine whether TB may serve as a model substrate for cytochrome P450 (CYP) 1A2, or possibly other isoforms, studies were undertaken to identify the individual human liver microsomal CYP isoforms responsible for the conversion of TB to its primary metabolites. Methods The kinetics of formation of the primary TB metabolites 3-methylxanthine (3-MX), 7-methylxanthine (7-MX) and 3,7-dimethyluric acid (3,7-DMU) by human liver microsomes were characterized using a specific hplc procedure. Effects of CYP isoform-selective xenobiotic inhibitor/substrate probes on each pathway were determined and confirmatory studies with recombinant enzymes were performed to define the contribution of individual isoforms to 3-MX, 7-MX and 3,7-DMU formation. Results The CYP1A2 inhibitor furafylline variably inhibited (0–65%) 7-MX formation, but had no effect on other pathways. Diethyldithiocarbamate and 4-nitrophenol, probes for CYP2E1, inhibited the formation of 3-MX, 7-MX and 3,7-DMU by ≈55–60%, 35–55% and 85%, respectively. Consistent with the microsomal studies, recombinant CYP1A2 and CYP2E1 exhibited similar apparent Km values for 7-MX formation and CYP2E1 was further shown to have the capacity to convert TB to both 3-MX and 3,7-DMU. Conclusions Given the contribution of multiple isoforms to 3-MX and 7-MX formation and the negligible formation of 3,7-DMU in vivo, TB is of little value as a CYP isoform-selective substrate in humans. PMID:10215755

  10. Selective oropharyngeal decontamination versus selective digestive decontamination in critically ill patients: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhao D

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Di Zhao,1,* Jian Song,2,* Xuan Gao,3 Fei Gao,4 Yupeng Wu,2 Yingying Lu,5 Kai Hou1 1Department of Neurosurgery, The First Hospital of Hebei Medical University, 2Department of Neurosurgery, 3Department of Neurology, The Second Hospital of Hebei Medical University, 4Hebei Provincial Procurement Centers for Medical Drugs and Devices, 5Department of Neurosurgery, The Second Hospital of Hebei Medical University, Shijiazhuang People’s Republic of China *These authors contributed equally to this work Background: Selective digestive decontamination (SDD and selective oropharyngeal decontamination (SOD are associated with reduced mortality and infection rates among patients in intensive care units (ICUs; however, whether SOD has a superior effect than SDD remains uncertain. Hence, we conducted a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs to compare SOD with SDD in terms of clinical outcomes and antimicrobial resistance rates in patients who were critically ill. Methods: RCTs published in PubMed, Embase, and Web of Science were systematically reviewed to compare the effects of SOD and SDD in patients who were critically ill. Outcomes included day-28 mortality, length of ICU stay, length of hospital stay, duration of mechanical ventilation, ICU-acquired bacteremia, and prevalence of antibiotic-resistant Gram-negative bacteria. Results were expressed as risk ratio (RR with 95% confidence intervals (CIs, and weighted mean differences (WMDs with 95% CIs. Pooled estimates were performed using a fixed-effects model or random-effects model, depending on the heterogeneity among studies. Results: A total of four RCTs involving 23,822 patients met the inclusion criteria and were included in this meta-analysis. Among patients whose admitting specialty was surgery, cardiothoracic surgery (57.3% and neurosurgery (29.7% were the two main types of surgery being performed. Pooled results showed that SOD had similar effects as SDD in day-28 mortality (RR =1

  11. Random forest variable selection in spatial malaria transmission modelling in Mpumalanga Province, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thandi Kapwata

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Malaria is an environmentally driven disease. In order to quantify the spatial variability of malaria transmission, it is imperative to understand the interactions between environmental variables and malaria epidemiology at a micro-geographic level using a novel statistical approach. The random forest (RF statistical learning method, a relatively new variable-importance ranking method, measures the variable importance of potentially influential parameters through the percent increase of the mean squared error. As this value increases, so does the relative importance of the associated variable. The principal aim of this study was to create predictive malaria maps generated using the selected variables based on the RF algorithm in the Ehlanzeni District of Mpumalanga Province, South Africa. From the seven environmental variables used [temperature, lag temperature, rainfall, lag rainfall, humidity, altitude, and the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI], altitude was identified as the most influential predictor variable due its high selection frequency. It was selected as the top predictor for 4 out of 12 months of the year, followed by NDVI, temperature and lag rainfall, which were each selected twice. The combination of climatic variables that produced the highest prediction accuracy was altitude, NDVI, and temperature. This suggests that these three variables have high predictive capabilities in relation to malaria transmission. Furthermore, it is anticipated that the predictive maps generated from predictions made by the RF algorithm could be used to monitor the progression of malaria and assist in intervention and prevention efforts with respect to malaria.

  12. Distribution of orientation selectivity in recurrent networks of spiking neurons with different random topologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadeh, Sadra; Rotter, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Neurons in the primary visual cortex are more or less selective for the orientation of a light bar used for stimulation. A broad distribution of individual grades of orientation selectivity has in fact been reported in all species. A possible reason for emergence of broad distributions is the recurrent network within which the stimulus is being processed. Here we compute the distribution of orientation selectivity in randomly connected model networks that are equipped with different spatial patterns of connectivity. We show that, for a wide variety of connectivity patterns, a linear theory based on firing rates accurately approximates the outcome of direct numerical simulations of networks of spiking neurons. Distance dependent connectivity in networks with a more biologically realistic structure does not compromise our linear analysis, as long as the linearized dynamics, and hence the uniform asynchronous irregular activity state, remain stable. We conclude that linear mechanisms of stimulus processing are indeed responsible for the emergence of orientation selectivity and its distribution in recurrent networks with functionally heterogeneous synaptic connectivity.

  13. Interference-aware random beam selection schemes for spectrum sharing systems

    KAUST Repository

    Abdallah, Mohamed

    2012-10-19

    Spectrum sharing systems have been recently introduced to alleviate the problem of spectrum scarcity by allowing secondary unlicensed networks to share the spectrum with primary licensed networks under acceptable interference levels to the primary users. In this work, we develop interference-aware random beam selection schemes that provide enhanced performance for the secondary network under the condition that the interference observed by the receivers of the primary network is below a predetermined/acceptable value. We consider a secondary link composed of a transmitter equipped with multiple antennas and a single-antenna receiver sharing the same spectrum with a primary link composed of a single-antenna transmitter and a single-antenna receiver. The proposed schemes select a beam, among a set of power-optimized random beams, that maximizes the signal-to-interference-plus-noise ratio (SINR) of the secondary link while satisfying the primary interference constraint for different levels of feedback information describing the interference level at the primary receiver. For the proposed schemes, we develop a statistical analysis for the SINR statistics as well as the capacity and bit error rate (BER) of the secondary link.

  14. Joint random beam and spectrum selection for spectrum sharing systems with partial channel state information

    KAUST Repository

    Abdallah, Mohamed M.

    2013-11-01

    In this work, we develop joint interference-aware random beam and spectrum selection scheme that provide enhanced performance for the secondary network under the condition that the interference observed at the primary receiver is below a predetermined acceptable value. We consider a secondary link composed of a transmitter equipped with multiple antennas and a single-antenna receiver sharing the same spectrum with a set of primary links composed of a single-antenna transmitter and a single-antenna receiver. The proposed schemes jointly select a beam, among a set of power-optimized random beams, as well as the primary spectrum that maximizes the signal-to-interference-plus-noise ratio (SINR) of the secondary link while satisfying the primary interference constraint. In particular, we consider the case where the interference level is described by a q-bit description of its magnitude, whereby we propose a technique to find the optimal quantizer thresholds in a mean square error (MSE) sense. © 2013 IEEE.

  15. Joint random beam and spectrum selection for spectrum sharing systems with partial channel state information

    KAUST Repository

    Abdallah, Mohamed M.; Sayed, Mostafa M.; Alouini, Mohamed-Slim; Qaraqe, Khalid A.

    2013-01-01

    In this work, we develop joint interference-aware random beam and spectrum selection scheme that provide enhanced performance for the secondary network under the condition that the interference observed at the primary receiver is below a predetermined acceptable value. We consider a secondary link composed of a transmitter equipped with multiple antennas and a single-antenna receiver sharing the same spectrum with a set of primary links composed of a single-antenna transmitter and a single-antenna receiver. The proposed schemes jointly select a beam, among a set of power-optimized random beams, as well as the primary spectrum that maximizes the signal-to-interference-plus-noise ratio (SINR) of the secondary link while satisfying the primary interference constraint. In particular, we consider the case where the interference level is described by a q-bit description of its magnitude, whereby we propose a technique to find the optimal quantizer thresholds in a mean square error (MSE) sense. © 2013 IEEE.

  16. Human tracking in thermal images using adaptive particle filters with online random forest learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ko, Byoung Chul; Kwak, Joon-Young; Nam, Jae-Yeal

    2013-11-01

    This paper presents a fast and robust human tracking method to use in a moving long-wave infrared thermal camera under poor illumination with the existence of shadows and cluttered backgrounds. To improve the human tracking performance while minimizing the computation time, this study proposes an online learning of classifiers based on particle filters and combination of a local intensity distribution (LID) with oriented center-symmetric local binary patterns (OCS-LBP). Specifically, we design a real-time random forest (RF), which is the ensemble of decision trees for confidence estimation, and confidences of the RF are converted into a likelihood function of the target state. First, the target model is selected by the user and particles are sampled. Then, RFs are generated using the positive and negative examples with LID and OCS-LBP features by online learning. The learned RF classifiers are used to detect the most likely target position in the subsequent frame in the next stage. Then, the RFs are learned again by means of fast retraining with the tracked object and background appearance in the new frame. The proposed algorithm is successfully applied to various thermal videos as tests and its tracking performance is better than those of other methods.

  17. Genomic hypomethylation in the human germline associates with selective structural mutability in the human genome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian Li

    Full Text Available The hotspots of structural polymorphisms and structural mutability in the human genome remain to be explained mechanistically. We examine associations of structural mutability with germline DNA methylation and with non-allelic homologous recombination (NAHR mediated by low-copy repeats (LCRs. Combined evidence from four human sperm methylome maps, human genome evolution, structural polymorphisms in the human population, and previous genomic and disease studies consistently points to a strong association of germline hypomethylation and genomic instability. Specifically, methylation deserts, the ~1% fraction of the human genome with the lowest methylation in the germline, show a tenfold enrichment for structural rearrangements that occurred in the human genome since the branching of chimpanzee and are highly enriched for fast-evolving loci that regulate tissue-specific gene expression. Analysis of copy number variants (CNVs from 400 human samples identified using a custom-designed array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH chip, combined with publicly available structural variation data, indicates that association of structural mutability with germline hypomethylation is comparable in magnitude to the association of structural mutability with LCR-mediated NAHR. Moreover, rare CNVs occurring in the genomes of individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and developmental delay and de novo CNVs occurring in those diagnosed with autism are significantly more concentrated within hypomethylated regions. These findings suggest a new connection between the epigenome, selective mutability, evolution, and human disease.

  18. Genome-wide prediction and analysis of human tissue-selective genes using microarray expression data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teng Shaolei

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Understanding how genes are expressed specifically in particular tissues is a fundamental question in developmental biology. Many tissue-specific genes are involved in the pathogenesis of complex human diseases. However, experimental identification of tissue-specific genes is time consuming and difficult. The accurate predictions of tissue-specific gene targets could provide useful information for biomarker development and drug target identification. Results In this study, we have developed a machine learning approach for predicting the human tissue-specific genes using microarray expression data. The lists of known tissue-specific genes for different tissues were collected from UniProt database, and the expression data retrieved from the previously compiled dataset according to the lists were used for input vector encoding. Random Forests (RFs and Support Vector Machines (SVMs were used to construct accurate classifiers. The RF classifiers were found to outperform SVM models for tissue-specific gene prediction. The results suggest that the candidate genes for brain or liver specific expression can provide valuable information for further experimental studies. Our approach was also applied for identifying tissue-selective gene targets for different types of tissues. Conclusions A machine learning approach has been developed for accurately identifying the candidate genes for tissue specific/selective expression. The approach provides an efficient way to select some interesting genes for developing new biomedical markers and improve our knowledge of tissue-specific expression.

  19. Selective attention increases choice certainty in human decision making.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zizlsperger, Leopold; Sauvigny, Thomas; Haarmeier, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Choice certainty is a probabilistic estimate of past performance and expected outcome. In perceptual decisions the degree of confidence correlates closely with choice accuracy and reaction times, suggesting an intimate relationship to objective performance. Here we show that spatial and feature-based attention increase human subjects' certainty more than accuracy in visual motion discrimination tasks. Our findings demonstrate for the first time a dissociation of choice accuracy and certainty with a significantly stronger influence of voluntary top-down attention on subjective performance measures than on objective performance. These results reveal a so far unknown mechanism of the selection process implemented by attention and suggest a unique biological valence of choice certainty beyond a faithful reflection of the decision process.

  20. Ionic Selectivity and Permeation Properties of Human PIEZO1 Channels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Radhakrishnan Gnanasambandam

    Full Text Available Members of the eukaryotic PIEZO family (the human orthologs are noted hPIEZO1 and hPIEZO2 form cation-selective mechanically-gated channels. We characterized the selectivity of human PIEZO1 (hPIEZO1 for alkali ions: K+, Na+, Cs+ and Li+; organic cations: TMA and TEA, and divalents: Ba2+, Ca2+, Mg2+ and Mn2+. All monovalent ions permeated the channel. At a membrane potential of -100 mV, Cs+, Na+ and K+ had chord conductances in the range of 35-55 pS with the exception of Li+, which had a significantly lower conductance of ~ 23 pS. The divalents decreased the single-channel permeability of K+, presumably because the divalents permeated slowly and occupied the open channel for a significant fraction of the time. In cell-attached mode, 90 mM extracellular divalents had a conductance for inward currents carried by the divalents of: 25 pS for Ba2+ and 15 pS for Ca2+ at -80 mV and 10 pS for Mg2+ at -50 mV. The organic cations, TMA and TEA, permeated slowly and attenuated K+ currents much like the divalents. As expected, the channel K+ conductance increased with K+ concentration saturating at ~ 45 pS and the KD of K+ for the channel was 32 mM. Pure divalent ion currents were of lower amplitude than those with alkali ions and the channel opening rate was lower in the presence of divalents than in the presence of monovalents. Exposing cells to the actin disrupting reagent cytochalasin D increased the frequency of openings in cell-attached patches probably by reducing mechanoprotection.

  1. Treatment selection in a randomized clinical trial via covariate-specific treatment effect curves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Yunbei; Zhou, Xiao-Hua

    2017-02-01

    For time-to-event data in a randomized clinical trial, we proposed two new methods for selecting an optimal treatment for a patient based on the covariate-specific treatment effect curve, which is used to represent the clinical utility of a predictive biomarker. To select an optimal treatment for a patient with a specific biomarker value, we proposed pointwise confidence intervals for each covariate-specific treatment effect curve and the difference between covariate-specific treatment effect curves of two treatments. Furthermore, to select an optimal treatment for a future biomarker-defined subpopulation of patients, we proposed confidence bands for each covariate-specific treatment effect curve and the difference between each pair of covariate-specific treatment effect curve over a fixed interval of biomarker values. We constructed the confidence bands based on a resampling technique. We also conducted simulation studies to evaluate finite-sample properties of the proposed estimation methods. Finally, we illustrated the application of the proposed method in a real-world data set.

  2. Integrated Behavior Therapy for Selective Mutism: a randomized controlled pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergman, R Lindsey; Gonzalez, Araceli; Piacentini, John; Keller, Melody L

    2013-10-01

    To evaluate the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary efficacy of a novel behavioral intervention for reducing symptoms of selective mutism and increasing functional speech. A total of 21 children ages 4 to 8 with primary selective mutism were randomized to 24 weeks of Integrated Behavior Therapy for Selective Mutism (IBTSM) or a 12-week Waitlist control. Clinical outcomes were assessed using blind independent evaluators, parent-, and teacher-report, and an objective behavioral measure. Treatment recipients completed a three-month follow-up to assess durability of treatment gains. Data indicated increased functional speaking behavior post-treatment as rated by parents and teachers, with a high rate of treatment responders as rated by blind independent evaluators (75%). Conversely, children in the Waitlist comparison group did not experience significant improvements in speaking behaviors. Children who received IBTSM also demonstrated significant improvements in number of words spoken at school compared to baseline, however, significant group differences did not emerge. Treatment recipients also experienced significant reductions in social anxiety per parent, but not teacher, report. Clinical gains were maintained over 3 month follow-up. IBTSM appears to be a promising new intervention that is efficacious in increasing functional speaking behaviors, feasible, and acceptable to parents and teachers. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Two-year Randomized Clinical Trial of Self-etching Adhesives and Selective Enamel Etching.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pena, C E; Rodrigues, J A; Ely, C; Giannini, M; Reis, A F

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this randomized, controlled prospective clinical trial was to evaluate the clinical effectiveness of restoring noncarious cervical lesions with two self-etching adhesive systems applied with or without selective enamel etching. A one-step self-etching adhesive (Xeno V(+)) and a two-step self-etching system (Clearfil SE Bond) were used. The effectiveness of phosphoric acid selective etching of enamel margins was also evaluated. Fifty-six cavities were restored with each adhesive system and divided into two subgroups (n=28; etch and non-etch). All 112 cavities were restored with the nanohybrid composite Esthet.X HD. The clinical effectiveness of restorations was recorded in terms of retention, marginal integrity, marginal staining, caries recurrence, and postoperative sensitivity after 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months (modified United States Public Health Service). The Friedman test detected significant differences only after 18 months for marginal staining in the groups Clearfil SE non-etch (p=0.009) and Xeno V(+) etch (p=0.004). One restoration was lost during the trial (Xeno V(+) etch; p>0.05). Although an increase in marginal staining was recorded for groups Clearfil SE non-etch and Xeno V(+) etch, the clinical effectiveness of restorations was considered acceptable for the single-step and two-step self-etching systems with or without selective enamel etching in this 24-month clinical trial.

  4. Cliff-edge model of obstetric selection in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitteroecker, Philipp; Huttegger, Simon M; Fischer, Barbara; Pavlicev, Mihaela

    2016-12-20

    The strikingly high incidence of obstructed labor due to the disproportion of fetal size and the mother's pelvic dimensions has puzzled evolutionary scientists for decades. Here we propose that these high rates are a direct consequence of the distinct characteristics of human obstetric selection. Neonatal size relative to the birth-relevant maternal dimensions is highly variable and positively associated with reproductive success until it reaches a critical value, beyond which natural delivery becomes impossible. As a consequence, the symmetric phenotype distribution cannot match the highly asymmetric, cliff-edged fitness distribution well: The optimal phenotype distribution that maximizes population mean fitness entails a fraction of individuals falling beyond the "fitness edge" (i.e., those with fetopelvic disproportion). Using a simple mathematical model, we show that weak directional selection for a large neonate, a narrow pelvic canal, or both is sufficient to account for the considerable incidence of fetopelvic disproportion. Based on this model, we predict that the regular use of Caesarean sections throughout the last decades has led to an evolutionary increase of fetopelvic disproportion rates by 10 to 20%.

  5. Human fertility, molecular genetics, and natural selection in modern societies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felix C Tropf

    Full Text Available Research on genetic influences on human fertility outcomes such as number of children ever born (NEB or the age at first childbirth (AFB has been solely based on twin and family-designs that suffer from problematic assumptions and practical limitations. The current study exploits recent advances in the field of molecular genetics by applying the genomic-relationship-matrix based restricted maximum likelihood (GREML methods to quantify for the first time the extent to which common genetic variants influence the NEB and the AFB of women. Using data from the UK and the Netherlands (N = 6,758, results show significant additive genetic effects on both traits explaining 10% (SE = 5 of the variance in the NEB and 15% (SE = 4 in the AFB. We further find a significant negative genetic correlation between AFB and NEB in the pooled sample of -0.62 (SE = 0.27, p-value = 0.02. This finding implies that individuals with genetic predispositions for an earlier AFB had a reproductive advantage and that natural selection operated not only in historical, but also in contemporary populations. The observed postponement in the AFB across the past century in Europe contrasts with these findings, suggesting an evolutionary override by environmental effects and underscoring that evolutionary predictions in modern human societies are not straight forward. It emphasizes the necessity for an integrative research design from the fields of genetics and social sciences in order to understand and predict fertility outcomes. Finally, our results suggest that we may be able to find genetic variants associated with human fertility when conducting GWAS-meta analyses with sufficient sample size.

  6. Affinity selection of Nipah and Hendra virus-related vaccine candidates from a complex random peptide library displayed on bacteriophage virus-like particles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peabody, David S.; Chackerian, Bryce; Ashley, Carlee; Carnes, Eric; Negrete, Oscar

    2017-01-24

    The invention relates to virus-like particles of bacteriophage MS2 (MS2 VLPs) displaying peptide epitopes or peptide mimics of epitopes of Nipah Virus envelope glycoprotein that elicit an immune response against Nipah Virus upon vaccination of humans or animals. Affinity selection on Nipah Virus-neutralizing monoclonal antibodies using random sequence peptide libraries on MS2 VLPs selected peptides with sequence similarity to peptide sequences found within the envelope glycoprotein of Nipah itself, thus identifying the epitopes the antibodies recognize. The selected peptide sequences themselves are not necessarily identical in all respects to a sequence within Nipah Virus glycoprotein, and therefore may be referred to as epitope mimics VLPs displaying these epitope mimics can serve as vaccine. On the other hand, display of the corresponding wild-type sequence derived from Nipah Virus and corresponding to the epitope mapped by affinity selection, may also be used as a vaccine.

  7. Infinite hidden conditional random fields for human behavior analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bousmalis, Konstantinos; Zafeiriou, Stefanos; Morency, Louis-Philippe; Pantic, Maja

    2013-01-01

    Hidden conditional random fields (HCRFs) are discriminative latent variable models that have been shown to successfully learn the hidden structure of a given classification problem (provided an appropriate validation of the number of hidden states). In this brief, we present the infinite HCRF (iHCRF), which is a nonparametric model based on hierarchical Dirichlet processes and is capable of automatically learning the optimal number of hidden states for a classification task. We show how we learn the model hyperparameters with an effective Markov-chain Monte Carlo sampling technique, and we explain the process that underlines our iHCRF model with the Restaurant Franchise Rating Agencies analogy. We show that the iHCRF is able to converge to a correct number of represented hidden states, and outperforms the best finite HCRFs--chosen via cross-validation--for the difficult tasks of recognizing instances of agreement, disagreement, and pain. Moreover, the iHCRF manages to achieve this performance in significantly less total training, validation, and testing time.

  8. Selecting Optimal Parameters of Random Linear Network Coding for Wireless Sensor Networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heide, J; Zhang, Qi; Fitzek, F H P

    2013-01-01

    This work studies how to select optimal code parameters of Random Linear Network Coding (RLNC) in Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs). With Rateless Deluge [1] the authors proposed to apply Network Coding (NC) for Over-the-Air Programming (OAP) in WSNs, and demonstrated that with NC a significant...... reduction in the number of transmitted packets can be achieved. However, NC introduces additional computations and potentially a non-negligible transmission overhead, both of which depend on the chosen coding parameters. Therefore it is necessary to consider the trade-off that these coding parameters...... present in order to obtain the lowest energy consumption per transmitted bit. This problem is analyzed and suitable coding parameters are determined for the popular Tmote Sky platform. Compared to the use of traditional RLNC, these parameters enable a reduction in the energy spent per bit which grows...

  9. Day-ahead load forecast using random forest and expert input selection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lahouar, A.; Ben Hadj Slama, J.

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • A model based on random forests for short term load forecast is proposed. • An expert feature selection is added to refine inputs. • Special attention is paid to customers behavior, load profile and special holidays. • The model is flexible and able to handle complex load signal. • A technical comparison is performed to assess the forecast accuracy. - Abstract: The electrical load forecast is getting more and more important in recent years due to the electricity market deregulation and integration of renewable resources. To overcome the incoming challenges and ensure accurate power prediction for different time horizons, sophisticated intelligent methods are elaborated. Utilization of intelligent forecast algorithms is among main characteristics of smart grids, and is an efficient tool to face uncertainty. Several crucial tasks of power operators such as load dispatch rely on the short term forecast, thus it should be as accurate as possible. To this end, this paper proposes a short term load predictor, able to forecast the next 24 h of load. Using random forest, characterized by immunity to parameter variations and internal cross validation, the model is constructed following an online learning process. The inputs are refined by expert feature selection using a set of if–then rules, in order to include the own user specifications about the country weather or market, and to generalize the forecast ability. The proposed approach is tested through a real historical set from the Tunisian Power Company, and the simulation shows accurate and satisfactory results for one day in advance, with an average error exceeding rarely 2.3%. The model is validated for regular working days and weekends, and special attention is paid to moving holidays, following non Gregorian calendar

  10. Random vs. systematic sampling from administrative databases involving human subjects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagino, C; Lo, R J

    1998-09-01

    Two sampling techniques, simple random sampling (SRS) and systematic sampling (SS), were compared to determine whether they yield similar and accurate distributions for the following four factors: age, gender, geographic location and years in practice. Any point estimate within 7 yr or 7 percentage points of its reference standard (SRS or the entire data set, i.e., the target population) was considered "acceptably similar" to the reference standard. The sampling frame was from the entire membership database of the Canadian Chiropractic Association. The two sampling methods were tested using eight different sample sizes of n (50, 100, 150, 200, 250, 300, 500, 800). From the profile/characteristics, summaries of four known factors [gender, average age, number (%) of chiropractors in each province and years in practice], between- and within-methods chi 2 tests and unpaired t tests were performed to determine whether any of the differences [descriptively greater than 7% or 7 yr] were also statistically significant. The strengths of the agreements between the provincial distributions were quantified by calculating the percent agreements for each (provincial pairwise-comparison methods). Any percent agreement less than 70% was judged to be unacceptable. Our assessments of the two sampling methods (SRS and SS) for the different sample sizes tested suggest that SRS and SS yielded acceptably similar results. Both methods started to yield "correct" sample profiles at approximately the same sample size (n > 200). SS is not only convenient, it can be recommended for sampling from large databases in which the data are listed without any inherent order biases other than alphabetical listing by surname.

  11. Field-based random sampling without a sampling frame: control selection for a case-control study in rural Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crampin, A C; Mwinuka, V; Malema, S S; Glynn, J R; Fine, P E

    2001-01-01

    Selection bias, particularly of controls, is common in case-control studies and may materially affect the results. Methods of control selection should be tailored both for the risk factors and disease under investigation and for the population being studied. We present here a control selection method devised for a case-control study of tuberculosis in rural Africa (Karonga, northern Malawi) that selects an age/sex frequency-matched random sample of the population, with a geographical distribution in proportion to the population density. We also present an audit of the selection process, and discuss the potential of this method in other settings.

  12. Dissecting historical changes of selective pressures in the evolution of human pigmentation

    OpenAIRE

    Huang, Xin; Wang, Sijia; Jin, Li; He, Yungang

    2018-01-01

    Human pigmentation is a highly diverse trait among populations, and has drawn particular attention from both academic and non-academic investigators for thousands of years. To explain the diversity of human pigmentation, researchers have proposed that human pigmentation is adapted for ultraviolet radiation and driven by natural selection. Although studies have detected signals of natural selection in several human pigmentation genes, none have quantitatively investigated the historical select...

  13. Selective neuronal lapses precede human cognitive lapses following sleep deprivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nir, Yuval; Andrillon, Thomas; Marmelshtein, Amit; Suthana, Nanthia; Cirelli, Chiara; Tononi, Giulio; Fried, Itzhak

    2017-12-01

    Sleep deprivation is a major source of morbidity with widespread health effects, including increased risk of hypertension, diabetes, obesity, heart attack, and stroke. Moreover, sleep deprivation brings about vehicle accidents and medical errors and is therefore an urgent topic of investigation. During sleep deprivation, homeostatic and circadian processes interact to build up sleep pressure, which results in slow behavioral performance (cognitive lapses) typically attributed to attentional thalamic and frontoparietal circuits, but the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Recently, through study of electroencephalograms (EEGs) in humans and local field potentials (LFPs) in nonhuman primates and rodents it was found that, during sleep deprivation, regional 'sleep-like' slow and theta (slow/theta) waves co-occur with impaired behavioral performance during wakefulness. Here we used intracranial electrodes to record single-neuron activities and LFPs in human neurosurgical patients performing a face/nonface categorization psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) over multiple experimental sessions, including a session after full-night sleep deprivation. We find that, just before cognitive lapses, the selective spiking responses of individual neurons in the medial temporal lobe (MTL) are attenuated, delayed, and lengthened. These 'neuronal lapses' are evident on a trial-by-trial basis when comparing the slowest behavioral PVT reaction times to the fastest. Furthermore, during cognitive lapses, LFPs exhibit a relative local increase in slow/theta activity that is correlated with degraded single-neuron responses and with baseline theta activity. Our results show that cognitive lapses involve local state-dependent changes in neuronal activity already present in the MTL.

  14. Modified random hinge transport mechanics and multiple scattering step-size selection in EGS5

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilderman, S.J.; Bielajew, A.F.

    2005-01-01

    The new transport mechanics in EGS5 allows for significantly longer electron transport step sizes and hence shorter computation times than required for identical problems in EGS4. But as with all Monte Carlo electron transport algorithms, certain classes of problems exhibit step-size dependencies even when operating within recommended ranges, sometimes making selection of step-sizes a daunting task for novice users. Further contributing to this problem, because of the decoupling of multiple scattering and continuous energy loss in the dual random hinge transport mechanics of EGS5, there are two independent step sizes in EGS5, one for multiple scattering and one for continuous energy loss, each of which influences speed and accuracy in a different manner. Further, whereas EGS4 used a single value of fractional energy loss (ESTEPE) to determine step sizes at all energies, to increase performance by decreasing the amount of effort expended simulating lower energy particles, EGS5 permits the fractional energy loss values which are used to determine both the multiple scattering and continuous energy loss step sizes to vary with energy. This results in requiring the user to specify four fractional energy loss values when optimizing computations for speed. Thus, in order to simplify step-size selection and to mitigate step-size dependencies, a method has been devised to automatically optimize step-size selection based on a single material dependent input related to the size of problem tally region. In this paper we discuss the new transport mechanics in EGS5 and describe the automatic step-size optimization algorithm. (author)

  15. Selection bias in studies of human reproduction-longevity trade-offs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helle, Samuli

    2017-12-13

    A shorter lifespan as a potential cost of high reproductive effort in humans has intrigued researchers for more than a century. However, the results have been inconclusive so far and despite strong theoretical expectations we do not currently have compelling evidence for the longevity costs of reproduction. Using Monte Carlo simulation, it is shown here that a common practice in human reproduction-longevity studies using historical data (the most relevant data sources for this question), the omission of women who died prior to menopausal age from the analysis, results in severe underestimation of the potential underlying trade-off between reproduction and lifespan. In other words, assuming that such a trade-off is expressed also during reproductive years, the strength of the trade-off between reproduction and lifespan is progressively weakened when women dying during reproductive ages are sequentially and non-randomly excluded from the analysis. In cases of small sample sizes (e.g. few hundreds of observations), this selection bias by reducing statistical power may even partly explain the null results commonly found in this field. Future studies in this field should thus apply statistical approaches that account for or avoid selection bias in order to recover reliable effect size estimates between reproduction and longevity. © 2017 The Author(s).

  16. The adverse effect of selective cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitor on random skin flap survival in rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haiyong Ren

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Cyclooxygenase-2(COX-2 inhibitors provide desired analgesic effects after injury or surgery, but evidences suggested they also attenuate wound healing. The study is to investigate the effect of COX-2 inhibitor on random skin flap survival. METHODS: The McFarlane flap model was established in 40 rats and evaluated within two groups, each group gave the same volume of Parecoxib and saline injection for 7 days. The necrotic area of the flap was measured, the specimens of the flap were stained with haematoxylin-eosin(HE for histologic analysis. Immunohistochemical staining was performed to analyse the level of VEGF and COX-2 . RESULTS: 7 days after operation, the flap necrotic area ratio in study group (66.65 ± 2.81% was significantly enlarged than that of the control group(48.81 ± 2.33%(P <0.01. Histological analysis demonstrated angiogenesis with mean vessel density per mm(2 being lower in study group (15.4 ± 4.4 than in control group (27.2 ± 4.1 (P <0.05. To evaluate the expression of COX-2 and VEGF protein in the intermediate area II in the two groups by immunohistochemistry test .The expression of COX-2 in study group was (1022.45 ± 153.1, and in control group was (2638.05 ± 132.2 (P <0.01. The expression of VEGF in the study and control groups were (2779.45 ± 472.0 vs (4938.05 ± 123.6(P <0.01.In the COX-2 inhibitor group, the expressions of COX-2 and VEGF protein were remarkably down-regulated as compared with the control group. CONCLUSION: Selective COX-2 inhibitor had adverse effect on random skin flap survival. Suppression of neovascularization induced by low level of VEGF was supposed to be the biological mechanism.

  17. Application of random coherence order selection in gradient-enhanced multidimensional NMR

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bostock, Mark J.; Nietlispach, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Development of multidimensional NMR is essential to many applications, for example in high resolution structural studies of biomolecules. Multidimensional techniques enable separation of NMR signals over several dimensions, improving signal resolution, whilst also allowing identification of new connectivities. However, these advantages come at a significant cost. The Fourier transform theorem requires acquisition of a grid of regularly spaced points to satisfy the Nyquist criterion, while frequency discrimination and acquisition of a pure phase spectrum require acquisition of both quadrature components for each time point in every indirect (non-acquisition) dimension, adding a factor of 2 N -1 to the number of free- induction decays which must be acquired, where N is the number of dimensions. Compressed sensing (CS) ℓ 1 -norm minimisation in combination with non-uniform sampling (NUS) has been shown to be extremely successful in overcoming the Nyquist criterion. Previously, maximum entropy reconstruction has also been used to overcome the limitation of frequency discrimination, processing data acquired with only one quadrature component at a given time interval, known as random phase detection (RPD), allowing a factor of two reduction in the number of points for each indirect dimension (Maciejewski et al. 2011 PNAS 108 16640). However, whilst this approach can be easily applied in situations where the quadrature components are acquired as amplitude modulated data, the same principle is not easily extended to phase modulated (P-/N-type) experiments where data is acquired in the form exp (iωt) or exp (-iωt), and which make up many of the multidimensional experiments used in modern NMR. Here we demonstrate a modification of the CS ℓ 1 -norm approach to allow random coherence order selection (RCS) for phase modulated experiments; we generalise the nomenclature for RCS and RPD as random quadrature detection (RQD). With this method, the power of RQD can be extended

  18. Human norovirus inactivation in oysters by high hydrostatic pressure processing: A randomized double-blinded study

    Science.gov (United States)

    This randomized, double-blinded, clinical trial assessed the effect of high hydrostatic pressure processing (HPP) on genogroup I.1 human norovirus (HuNoV) inactivation in virus-seeded oysters when ingested by subjects. The safety and efficacy of HPP treatments were assessed in three study phases wi...

  19. Human prostatic cancer cells, PC3, elaborate mitogenic activity which selectively stimulates human bone cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perkel, V.S.; Mohan, S.; Herring, S.J.; Baylink, D.J.; Linkhart, T.A.

    1990-01-01

    Prostatic cancer typically produces osteoblastic metastases which are not attended by marrow fibrosis. In the present study we sought to test the hypothesis that prostatic cancer cells produce factor(s) which act selectively on human osteoblasts. Such a paracrine mechanism would explain the observed increase in osteoblasts, unaccompanied by an increase in marrow fibroblasts. To test this hypothesis we investigated the mitogenic activity released by the human prostatic tumor cell line, PC3. PC3 cells have been reported previously to produce mitogenic activity for cells that was relatively specific for rat osteoblasts compared to rat fibroblasts. However, the effects of this activity on human cells has not been examined previously. PC3-conditioned medium (CM) (5-50 micrograms CM protein/ml) stimulated human osteoblast proliferation by 200-950% yet did not stimulate human fibroblast proliferation ([3H]thymidine incorporation). PC3 CM also increased cell numbers in human osteoblast but not fibroblast cell cultures. To determine whether the osteoblast-specific mitogenic activity could be attributed to known bone growth factors, specific assays for these growth factors were performed. PC3 CM contained 10 pg insulin-like growth factor (IGF) I, less than 2 pg IGF II, 54 pg basic fibroblast growth factor, and 16 pg transforming growth factor beta/microgram CM protein. None of these growth factors alone or in combination could account for the observed osteoblast-specific PC3 cell-derived mitogenic activity. Furthermore, when 5 micrograms/ml PC3 CM was tested in combination with maximally effective concentrations of either basic fibroblast growth factor, IGF I, IGF II, or transforming growth factor beta, it produced an additive effect suggesting that PC3 CM stimulates osteoblast proliferation by a mechanism independent of these bone mitogens

  20. Randomized trial of exclusive human milk versus preterm formula diets in extremely premature infants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cristofalo, Elizabeth A; Schanler, Richard J; Blanco, Cynthia L; Sullivan, Sandra; Trawoeger, Rudolf; Kiechl-Kohlendorfer, Ursula; Dudell, Golde; Rechtman, David J; Lee, Martin L; Lucas, Alan; Abrams, Steven

    2013-12-01

    To compare the duration of parenteral nutrition, growth, and morbidity in extremely premature infants fed exclusive diets of either bovine milk-based preterm formula (BOV) or donor human milk and human milk-based human milk fortifier (HUM), in a randomized trial of formula vs human milk. Multicenter randomized controlled trial. The authors studied extremely preterm infants whose mothers did not provide their milk. Infants were fed either BOV or an exclusive human milk diet of pasteurized donor human milk and HUM. The major outcome was duration of parenteral nutrition. Secondary outcomes were growth, respiratory support, and necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC). Birth weight (983 vs 996 g) and gestational age (27.5 vs 27.7 wk), in BOV and HUM, respectively, were similar. There was a significant difference in median parenteral nutrition days: 36 vs 27, in BOV vs HUM, respectively (P = .04). The incidence of NEC in BOV was 21% (5 cases) vs 3% in HUM (1 case), P = .08; surgical NEC was significantly higher in BOV (4 cases) than HUM (0 cases), P = .04. In extremely preterm infants given exclusive diets of preterm formula vs human milk, there was a significantly greater duration of parenteral nutrition and higher rate of surgical NEC in infants receiving preterm formula. This trial supports the use of an exclusive human milk diet to nourish extremely preterm infants in the neonatal intensive care unit. Copyright © 2013 Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Religion in human evolution: on some generative and selective mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Jeppe Sinding

    2012-01-01

    On the use of moral psychology in reconstructing the evolutionary role of religion in human social development......On the use of moral psychology in reconstructing the evolutionary role of religion in human social development...

  2. Multi-Label Learning via Random Label Selection for Protein Subcellular Multi-Locations Prediction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiao; Li, Guo-Zheng

    2013-03-12

    Prediction of protein subcellular localization is an important but challenging problem, particularly when proteins may simultaneously exist at, or move between, two or more different subcellular location sites. Most of the existing protein subcellular localization methods are only used to deal with the single-location proteins. In the past few years, only a few methods have been proposed to tackle proteins with multiple locations. However, they only adopt a simple strategy, that is, transforming the multi-location proteins to multiple proteins with single location, which doesn't take correlations among different subcellular locations into account. In this paper, a novel method named RALS (multi-label learning via RAndom Label Selection), is proposed to learn from multi-location proteins in an effective and efficient way. Through five-fold cross validation test on a benchmark dataset, we demonstrate our proposed method with consideration of label correlations obviously outperforms the baseline BR method without consideration of label correlations, indicating correlations among different subcellular locations really exist and contribute to improvement of prediction performance. Experimental results on two benchmark datasets also show that our proposed methods achieve significantly higher performance than some other state-of-the-art methods in predicting subcellular multi-locations of proteins. The prediction web server is available at http://levis.tongji.edu.cn:8080/bioinfo/MLPred-Euk/ for the public usage.

  3. Unnatural Selection: Seeing Human Intelligence in Artificial Creations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veale, Tony

    2015-12-01

    As generative AI systems grow in sophistication, so too do our expectations of their outputs. For as automated systems acculturate themselves to ever larger sets of inspiring human examples, the more we expect them to produce human-quality outputs, and the greater our disappointment when they fall short. While our generative systems must embody some sense of what constitutes human creativity if their efforts are to be valued as creative by human judges, computers are not human, and need not go so far as to actively pretend to be human to be seen as creative. As discomfiting objects that reside at the boundary of two seemingly disjoint categories, creative machines arouse our sense of the uncanny, or what Freud memorably called the Unheimlich. Like a ventriloquist's doll that finds its own voice, computers are free to blend the human and the non-human, to surprise us with their knowledge of our world and to discomfit with their detached, other-worldly perspectives on it. Nowhere is our embrace of the unnatural and the uncanny more evident than in the popularity of Twitterbots, automatic text generators on Twitter that are followed by humans precisely because they are non-human, and because their outputs so often seem meaningful yet unnatural. This paper evaluates a metaphor generator named @MetaphorMagnet, a Twitterbot that tempers the uncanny with aptness to yield results that are provocative but meaningful.

  4. The effect of atomoxetine on random and directed exploration in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, Christopher M; Wilson, Robert C; van der Wee, Nic J; Giltay, Eric J; van Noorden, Martijn S; Cohen, Jonathan D; Nieuwenhuis, Sander

    2017-01-01

    The adaptive regulation of the trade-off between pursuing a known reward (exploitation) and sampling lesser-known options in search of something better (exploration) is critical for optimal performance. Theory and recent empirical work suggest that humans use at least two strategies for solving this dilemma: a directed strategy in which choices are explicitly biased toward information seeking, and a random strategy in which decision noise leads to exploration by chance. Here we examined the hypothesis that random exploration is governed by the neuromodulatory locus coeruleus-norepinephrine system. We administered atomoxetine, a norepinephrine transporter blocker that increases extracellular levels of norepinephrine throughout the cortex, to 22 healthy human participants in a double-blind crossover design. We examined the effect of treatment on performance in a gambling task designed to produce distinct measures of directed exploration and random exploration. In line with our hypothesis we found an effect of atomoxetine on random, but not directed exploration. However, contrary to expectation, atomoxetine reduced rather than increased random exploration. We offer three potential explanations of our findings, involving the non-linear relationship between tonic NE and cognitive performance, the interaction of atomoxetine with other neuromodulators, and the possibility that atomoxetine affected phasic norepinephrine activity more so than tonic norepinephrine activity.

  5. Searching for Survivors through Random Human-Body Movement Outdoors by Continuous-Wave Radar Array.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Chuantao; Chen, Fuming; Qi, Fugui; Liu, Miao; Li, Zhao; Liang, Fulai; Jing, Xijing; Lu, Guohua; Wang, Jianqi

    2016-01-01

    It is a major challenge to search for survivors after chemical or nuclear leakage or explosions. At present, biological radar can be used to achieve this goal by detecting the survivor's respiration signal. However, owing to the random posture of an injured person at a rescue site, the radar wave may directly irradiate the person's head or feet, in which it is difficult to detect the respiration signal. This paper describes a multichannel-based antenna array technology, which forms an omnidirectional detection system via 24-GHz Doppler biological radar, to address the random positioning relative to the antenna of an object to be detected. Furthermore, since the survivors often have random body movement such as struggling and twitching, the slight movements of the body caused by breathing are obscured by these movements. Therefore, a method is proposed to identify random human-body movement by utilizing multichannel information to calculate the background variance of the environment in combination with a constant-false-alarm-rate detector. The conducted outdoor experiments indicate that the system can realize the omnidirectional detection of random human-body movement and distinguish body movement from environmental interference such as movement of leaves and grass. The methods proposed in this paper will be a promising way to search for survivors outdoors.

  6. Searching for Survivors through Random Human-Body Movement Outdoors by Continuous-Wave Radar Array

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Miao; Li, Zhao; Liang, Fulai; Jing, Xijing; Lu, Guohua; Wang, Jianqi

    2016-01-01

    It is a major challenge to search for survivors after chemical or nuclear leakage or explosions. At present, biological radar can be used to achieve this goal by detecting the survivor’s respiration signal. However, owing to the random posture of an injured person at a rescue site, the radar wave may directly irradiate the person’s head or feet, in which it is difficult to detect the respiration signal. This paper describes a multichannel-based antenna array technology, which forms an omnidirectional detection system via 24-GHz Doppler biological radar, to address the random positioning relative to the antenna of an object to be detected. Furthermore, since the survivors often have random body movement such as struggling and twitching, the slight movements of the body caused by breathing are obscured by these movements. Therefore, a method is proposed to identify random human-body movement by utilizing multichannel information to calculate the background variance of the environment in combination with a constant-false-alarm-rate detector. The conducted outdoor experiments indicate that the system can realize the omnidirectional detection of random human-body movement and distinguish body movement from environmental interference such as movement of leaves and grass. The methods proposed in this paper will be a promising way to search for survivors outdoors. PMID:27073860

  7. A Selected Bibliography: Human Dimensions of Strategic Leadership

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Bey, Jacqueline

    2002-01-01

    Partial contents: Human Dimensions of Strategic Leadership, Critical/Creative/ Systems Thinking, Leading and Managing Change, Military Culture and Organizational Climate, Civil-Military Relations, Negotiation, Combat...

  8. The Role of Emotions in Reinforcement: Response Selection in Humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Overskeid, Geir

    2012-01-01

    Historically, researchers have never quite been able to agree as to the role of emotions, if any, when behavior is selected by its consequences. A brief review of findings from several fields suggests that in contingency-shaped behavior, motivating events, often unconscious, seem needed for reinforcement to select behavior. In rule-governed…

  9. Modulation of human extrastriate visual processing by selective attention to colours and words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nobre, A C; Allison, T; McCarthy, G

    1998-07-01

    The present study investigated the effect of visual selective attention upon neural processing within functionally specialized regions of the human extrastriate visual cortex. Field potentials were recorded directly from the inferior surface of the temporal lobes in subjects with epilepsy. The experimental task required subjects to focus attention on words from one of two competing texts. Words were presented individually and foveally. Texts were interleaved randomly and were distinguishable on the basis of word colour. Focal field potentials were evoked by words in the posterior part of the fusiform gyrus. Selective attention strongly modulated long-latency potentials evoked by words. The attention effect co-localized with word-related potentials in the posterior fusiform gyrus, and was independent of stimulus colour. The results demonstrated that stimuli receive differential processing within specialized regions of the extrastriate cortex as a function of attention. The late onset of the attention effect and its co-localization with letter string-related potentials but not with colour-related potentials recorded from nearby regions of the fusiform gyrus suggest that the attention effect is due to top-down influences from downstream regions involved in word processing.

  10. Human mammary epithelial cells exhibit a bimodal correlated random walk pattern.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potdar, Alka A; Jeon, Junhwan; Weaver, Alissa M; Quaranta, Vito; Cummings, Peter T

    2010-03-10

    Organisms, at scales ranging from unicellular to mammals, have been known to exhibit foraging behavior described by random walks whose segments confirm to Lévy or exponential distributions. For the first time, we present evidence that single cells (mammary epithelial cells) that exist in multi-cellular organisms (humans) follow a bimodal correlated random walk (BCRW). Cellular tracks of MCF-10A pBabe, neuN and neuT random migration on 2-D plastic substrates, analyzed using bimodal analysis, were found to reveal the BCRW pattern. We find two types of exponentially distributed correlated flights (corresponding to what we refer to as the directional and re-orientation phases) each having its own correlation between move step-lengths within flights. The exponential distribution of flight lengths was confirmed using different analysis methods (logarithmic binning with normalization, survival frequency plots and maximum likelihood estimation). Because of the presence of non-uniform turn angle distribution of move step-lengths within a flight and two different types of flights, we propose that the epithelial random walk is a BCRW comprising of two alternating modes with varying degree of correlations, rather than a simple persistent random walk. A BCRW model rather than a simple persistent random walk correctly matches the super-diffusivity in the cell migration paths as indicated by simulations based on the BCRW model.

  11. Human mammary epithelial cells exhibit a bimodal correlated random walk pattern.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alka A Potdar

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Organisms, at scales ranging from unicellular to mammals, have been known to exhibit foraging behavior described by random walks whose segments confirm to Lévy or exponential distributions. For the first time, we present evidence that single cells (mammary epithelial cells that exist in multi-cellular organisms (humans follow a bimodal correlated random walk (BCRW.Cellular tracks of MCF-10A pBabe, neuN and neuT random migration on 2-D plastic substrates, analyzed using bimodal analysis, were found to reveal the BCRW pattern. We find two types of exponentially distributed correlated flights (corresponding to what we refer to as the directional and re-orientation phases each having its own correlation between move step-lengths within flights. The exponential distribution of flight lengths was confirmed using different analysis methods (logarithmic binning with normalization, survival frequency plots and maximum likelihood estimation.Because of the presence of non-uniform turn angle distribution of move step-lengths within a flight and two different types of flights, we propose that the epithelial random walk is a BCRW comprising of two alternating modes with varying degree of correlations, rather than a simple persistent random walk. A BCRW model rather than a simple persistent random walk correctly matches the super-diffusivity in the cell migration paths as indicated by simulations based on the BCRW model.

  12. Bayesian dose selection design for a binary outcome using restricted response adaptive randomization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meinzer, Caitlyn; Martin, Renee; Suarez, Jose I

    2017-09-08

    In phase II trials, the most efficacious dose is usually not known. Moreover, given limited resources, it is difficult to robustly identify a dose while also testing for a signal of efficacy that would support a phase III trial. Recent designs have sought to be more efficient by exploring multiple doses through the use of adaptive strategies. However, the added flexibility may potentially increase the risk of making incorrect assumptions and reduce the total amount of information available across the dose range as a function of imbalanced sample size. To balance these challenges, a novel placebo-controlled design is presented in which a restricted Bayesian response adaptive randomization (RAR) is used to allocate a majority of subjects to the optimal dose of active drug, defined as the dose with the lowest probability of poor outcome. However, the allocation between subjects who receive active drug or placebo is held constant to retain the maximum possible power for a hypothesis test of overall efficacy comparing the optimal dose to placebo. The design properties and optimization of the design are presented in the context of a phase II trial for subarachnoid hemorrhage. For a fixed total sample size, a trade-off exists between the ability to select the optimal dose and the probability of rejecting the null hypothesis. This relationship is modified by the allocation ratio between active and control subjects, the choice of RAR algorithm, and the number of subjects allocated to an initial fixed allocation period. While a responsive RAR algorithm improves the ability to select the correct dose, there is an increased risk of assigning more subjects to a worse arm as a function of ephemeral trends in the data. A subarachnoid treatment trial is used to illustrate how this design can be customized for specific objectives and available data. Bayesian adaptive designs are a flexible approach to addressing multiple questions surrounding the optimal dose for treatment efficacy

  13. A Dimeric Mutant of Human Pancreatic Ribonuclease with Selective Cytotoxicity toward Malignant Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piccoli, Renata; di Gaetano, Sonia; de Lorenzo, Claudia; Grauso, Michela; Monaco, Carmen; Spalletti-Cernia, Daniela; Laccetti, Paolo; Cinatl, Jaroslav; Matousek, Josef; D'Alessio, Giuseppe

    1999-07-01

    Monomeric human pancreatic RNase, devoid of any biological activity other than its RNA degrading ability, was engineered into a dimeric protein with a cytotoxic action on mouse and human tumor cells, but lacking any appreciable toxicity on mouse and human normal cells. This dimeric variant of human pancreas RNase selectively sensitizes to apoptotic death cells derived from a human thyroid tumor. Because of its selectivity for tumor cells, and because of its human origin, this protein represents a potentially very attractive, novel tool for anticancer therapy.

  14. Using ArcMap, Google Earth, and Global Positioning Systems to select and locate random households in rural Haiti.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wampler, Peter J; Rediske, Richard R; Molla, Azizur R

    2013-01-18

    A remote sensing technique was developed which combines a Geographic Information System (GIS); Google Earth, and Microsoft Excel to identify home locations for a random sample of households in rural Haiti. The method was used to select homes for ethnographic and water quality research in a region of rural Haiti located within 9 km of a local hospital and source of health education in Deschapelles, Haiti. The technique does not require access to governmental records or ground based surveys to collect household location data and can be performed in a rapid, cost-effective manner. The random selection of households and the location of these households during field surveys were accomplished using GIS, Google Earth, Microsoft Excel, and handheld Garmin GPSmap 76CSx GPS units. Homes were identified and mapped in Google Earth, exported to ArcMap 10.0, and a random list of homes was generated using Microsoft Excel which was then loaded onto handheld GPS units for field location. The development and use of a remote sensing method was essential to the selection and location of random households. A total of 537 homes initially were mapped and a randomized subset of 96 was identified as potential survey locations. Over 96% of the homes mapped using Google Earth imagery were correctly identified as occupied dwellings. Only 3.6% of the occupants of mapped homes visited declined to be interviewed. 16.4% of the homes visited were not occupied at the time of the visit due to work away from the home or market days. A total of 55 households were located using this method during the 10 days of fieldwork in May and June of 2012. The method used to generate and field locate random homes for surveys and water sampling was an effective means of selecting random households in a rural environment lacking geolocation infrastructure. The success rate for locating households using a handheld GPS was excellent and only rarely was local knowledge required to identify and locate households. This

  15. Using ArcMap, Google Earth, and Global Positioning Systems to select and locate random households in rural Haiti

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wampler Peter J

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A remote sensing technique was developed which combines a Geographic Information System (GIS; Google Earth, and Microsoft Excel to identify home locations for a random sample of households in rural Haiti. The method was used to select homes for ethnographic and water quality research in a region of rural Haiti located within 9 km of a local hospital and source of health education in Deschapelles, Haiti. The technique does not require access to governmental records or ground based surveys to collect household location data and can be performed in a rapid, cost-effective manner. Methods The random selection of households and the location of these households during field surveys were accomplished using GIS, Google Earth, Microsoft Excel, and handheld Garmin GPSmap 76CSx GPS units. Homes were identified and mapped in Google Earth, exported to ArcMap 10.0, and a random list of homes was generated using Microsoft Excel which was then loaded onto handheld GPS units for field location. The development and use of a remote sensing method was essential to the selection and location of random households. Results A total of 537 homes initially were mapped and a randomized subset of 96 was identified as potential survey locations. Over 96% of the homes mapped using Google Earth imagery were correctly identified as occupied dwellings. Only 3.6% of the occupants of mapped homes visited declined to be interviewed. 16.4% of the homes visited were not occupied at the time of the visit due to work away from the home or market days. A total of 55 households were located using this method during the 10 days of fieldwork in May and June of 2012. Conclusions The method used to generate and field locate random homes for surveys and water sampling was an effective means of selecting random households in a rural environment lacking geolocation infrastructure. The success rate for locating households using a handheld GPS was excellent and only

  16. Peculiarities of the statistics of spectrally selected fluorescence radiation in laser-pumped dye-doped random media

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuvchenko, S. A.; Ushakova, E. V.; Pavlova, M. V.; Alonova, M. V.; Zimnyakov, D. A.

    2018-04-01

    We consider the practical realization of a new optical probe method of the random media which is defined as the reference-free path length interferometry with the intensity moments analysis. A peculiarity in the statistics of the spectrally selected fluorescence radiation in laser-pumped dye-doped random medium is discussed. Previously established correlations between the second- and the third-order moments of the intensity fluctuations in the random interference patterns, the coherence function of the probe radiation, and the path difference probability density for the interfering partial waves in the medium are confirmed. The correlations were verified using the statistical analysis of the spectrally selected fluorescence radiation emitted by a laser-pumped dye-doped random medium. Water solution of Rhodamine 6G was applied as the doping fluorescent agent for the ensembles of the densely packed silica grains, which were pumped by the 532 nm radiation of a solid state laser. The spectrum of the mean path length for a random medium was reconstructed.

  17. A random PCR screening system for the identification of type 1 human herpes simplex virus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Xuelian; Shi, Bisheng; Gong, Yan; Zhang, Xiaonan; Shen, Silan; Qian, Fangxing; Gu, Shimin; Hu, Yunwen; Yuan, Zhenghong

    2009-10-01

    Several viral diseases exhibit measles-like symptoms. Differentiation of suspected cases of measles with molecular epidemiological techniques in the laboratory is useful for measles surveillance. In this study, a random PCR screening system was undertaken for the identification of isolates from patients with measles-like symptoms who exhibited cytopathic effects, but who had negative results for measles virus-specific reverse transcription (RT)-PCR and indirect immunofluorescence assays. Sequence analysis of random amplified PCR products showed that they were highly homologous to type 1 human herpes simplex virus (HSV-1). The results were further confirmed by an HSV-1-specific TaqMan real-time PCR assay. The random PCR screening system described in this study provides an efficient procedure for the identification of unknown viral pathogens. Measles-like symptoms can also be caused by HSV-1, suggesting the need to include HSV-1 in differential diagnoses of measles-like diseases.

  18. Timing of food intake impacts daily rhythms of human salivary microbiota: a randomized, crossover study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collado, María Carmen; Engen, Phillip A; Bandín, Cristina; Cabrera-Rubio, Raúl; Voigt, Robin M; Green, Stefan J; Naqib, Ankur; Keshavarzian, Ali; Scheer, Frank A J L; Garaulet, Marta

    2018-04-01

    The composition of the diet (what we eat) has been widely related to the microbiota profile. However, whether the timing of food consumption (when we eat) influences microbiota in humans is unknown. A randomized, crossover study was performed in 10 healthy normal-weight young women to test the effect of the timing of food intake on the human microbiota in the saliva and fecal samples. More specifically, to determine whether eating late alters daily rhythms of human salivary microbiota, we interrogated salivary microbiota in samples obtained at 4 specific time points over 24 h, to achieve a better understanding of the relationship between food timing and metabolic alterations in humans. Results revealed significant diurnal rhythms in salivary diversity and bacterial relative abundance ( i.e., TM7 and Fusobacteria) across both early and late eating conditions. More importantly, meal timing affected diurnal rhythms in diversity of salivary microbiota toward an inverted rhythm between the eating conditions, and eating late increased the number of putative proinflammatory taxa, showing a diurnal rhythm in the saliva. In a randomized, crossover study, we showed for the first time the impact of the timing of food intake on human salivary microbiota. Eating the main meal late inverts the daily rhythm of salivary microbiota diversity which may have a deleterious effect on the metabolism of the host.-Collado, M. C., Engen, P. A., Bandín, C., Cabrera-Rubio, R., Voigt, R. M., Green, S. J., Naqib, A., Keshavarzian, A., Scheer, F. A. J. L., Garaulet, M. Timing of food intake impacts daily rhythms of human salivary microbiota: a randomized, crossover study.

  19. Potent selective nonpeptidic inhibitors of human lung tryptase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burgess, Laurence E.; Newhouse, Bradley J.; Ibrahim, Prabha; Rizzi, James; Kashem, Mohammed A.; Hartman, Ann; Brandhuber, Barbara J.; Wright, Clifford D.; Thomson, David S.; Vigers, Guy P. A.; Koch, Kevin

    1999-01-01

    Human lung tryptase, a homotetrameric serine protease unique to mast cell secretory granules, has been implicated in the pathogenesis of asthma. A hypothesis that tethered symmetrical inhibitors might bridge two adjacent active sites was explored via a rationally designed series of bisbenzamidines. These compounds demonstrated a remarkable distanced-defined structure–activity relationship against human tryptase with one series possessing subnanomolar potencies. Additional evidence supporting the concept of active-site bridging is also presented. PMID:10411878

  20. Potent selective nonpeptidic inhibitors of human lung tryptase

    OpenAIRE

    Burgess, Laurence E.; Newhouse, Bradley J.; Ibrahim, Prabha; Rizzi, James; Kashem, Mohammed A.; Hartman, Ann; Brandhuber, Barbara J.; Wright, Clifford D.; Thomson, David S.; Vigers, Guy P. A.; Koch, Kevin

    1999-01-01

    Human lung tryptase, a homotetrameric serine protease unique to mast cell secretory granules, has been implicated in the pathogenesis of asthma. A hypothesis that tethered symmetrical inhibitors might bridge two adjacent active sites was explored via a rationally designed series of bisbenzamidines. These compounds demonstrated a remarkable distanced-defined structure–activity relationship against human tryptase with one series possessing subnanomolar potencies. Additional evidence supporting ...

  1. Analisis of human resources managment in selected company

    OpenAIRE

    MELEG, Miroslav

    2010-01-01

    Bachelor thesis is focused on human sources as one of the most important part of operating organization. This work describe especially three elements of human resource management - rating, remunerating and motivating. Manpower is engine of organization. Managers have to approach individually to every employee. They have to catch requirements and experiences to regulate the system of leading manpower. Hidden potencial is almost in every person so it is necessary to educate them. That will be u...

  2. Rifampicin versus streptomycin for brucellosis treatment in humans: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meng, Fanjie; Pan, Xiangpo; Tong, Wenzhen

    2018-01-01

    Brucellosis is a zoonotic disease with a high morbidity in developing countries, but there the optimal treatment is not yet determined. Therefore, the development of a simple and effective treatment is important. The aim of this study was to summarize the available evidences and compare rifampicin with streptomycin in human brucellosis with doxycycline as background regimen. We systematically searched PubMed, EmBase, and the Cochrane Library from their inception up through December 2016. We included studies with a randomized controlled design that evaluated the effect of streptomycin compared with rifampicin in human brucellosis patients who received doxycycline therapy as background regimen. The overall failure and relapse were summarized using random-effects model. Our meta-analysis included 1,383 patients with brucellosis from 14 trials. We found that patients who received rifampicin therapy had a higher risk of overall failure (RR: 2.36; 95% CI: 1.72-3.23; Pbrucellosis receiving streptomycin therapy.

  3. Sex difference in human fingertip recognition of micron-level randomness as unpleasant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakatani, M; Kawasoe, T; Denda, M

    2011-08-01

    We investigated sex difference in evaluation, using the human fingertip, of the tactile impressions of three different micron-scale patterns laser-engraved on plastic plates. There were two ordered (periodical) patterns consisting of ripples on a scale of a few micrometres and one pseudo-random (non-periodical) pattern; these patterns were considered to mimic the surface geometry of healthy and damaged human hair, respectively. In the first experiment, 10 women and 10 men ran a fingertip over each surface and determined which of the three plates felt most unpleasant. All 10 female participants reported the random pattern, but not the ordered patterns, as unpleasant, whereas the majority of the male participants did not. In the second experiment, 9 of 10 female participants continued to report the pseudo-random pattern as unpleasant even after their fingertip had been coated with a collodion membrane. In the third experiment, participants were asked to evaluate the magnitude of the tactile impression for each pattern. The results again indicated that female participants tend to report a greater magnitude of unpleasantness than male participants. Our findings indicate that the female participants could readily detect microgeometric surface characteristics and that they evaluated the random pattern as more unpleasant. Possible physical and perceptual mechanisms involved are discussed. © 2011 The Authors. ICS © 2011 Society of Cosmetic Scientists and the Société Française de Cosmétologie.

  4. An action selection architecture for autonomous virtual humans in persistent worlds

    OpenAIRE

    Sevin, Etienne de; Thalmann, Daniel

    2007-01-01

    Nowadays, virtual humans such as non-player characters in computer games need to have a strong autonomy in order to live their own life in persistent virtual worlds. When designing autonomous virtual humans, the action selection problem needs to be considered, as it is responsible for decision making at each moment in time. Indeed action selection architectures for autonomous virtual humans need to be reactive, proactive, motivational, and emotional to obtain a high degree of autonomy and ind...

  5. Random small interfering RNA library screen identifies siRNAs that induce human erythroleukemia cell differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Cuiqing; Xiong, Yuan; Zhu, Ning; Lu, Yabin; Zhang, Jiewen; Wang, Song; Liang, Zicai; Shen, Yan; Chen, Meihong

    2011-03-01

    Cancers are characterized by poor differentiation. Differentiation therapy is a strategy to alleviate malignant phenotypes by inducing cancer cell differentiation. Here we carried out a combinatorial high-throughput screen with a random siRNA library on human erythroleukemia K-562 cell differentiation. Two siRNAs screened from the library were validated to be able to induce erythroid differentiation to varying degrees, determined by CD235 and globin up-regulation, GATA-2 down-regulation, and cell growth inhibition. The screen we performed here is the first trial of screening cancer differentiation-inducing agents from a random siRNA library, demonstrating that a random siRNA library can be considered as a new resource in efforts to seek new therapeutic agents for cancers. As a random siRNA library has a broad coverage for the entire genome, including known/unknown genes and protein coding/non-coding sequences, screening using a random siRNA library can be expected to greatly augment the repertoire of therapeutic siRNAs for cancers.

  6. Optimal Modality Selection for Cooperative Human-Robot Task Completion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacob, Mithun George; Wachs, Juan P

    2016-12-01

    Human-robot cooperation in complex environments must be fast, accurate, and resilient. This requires efficient communication channels where robots need to assimilate information using a plethora of verbal and nonverbal modalities such as hand gestures, speech, and gaze. However, even though hybrid human-robot communication frameworks and multimodal communication have been studied, a systematic methodology for designing multimodal interfaces does not exist. This paper addresses the gap by proposing a novel methodology to generate multimodal lexicons which maximizes multiple performance metrics over a wide range of communication modalities (i.e., lexicons). The metrics are obtained through a mixture of simulation and real-world experiments. The methodology is tested in a surgical setting where a robot cooperates with a surgeon to complete a mock abdominal incision and closure task by delivering surgical instruments. Experimental results show that predicted optimal lexicons significantly outperform predicted suboptimal lexicons (p human-robot collision) and the differences in the lexicons are analyzed.

  7. The relation between flexibility of human resources and performance indexes of selected hospitals of Tehran Medical Sciences University

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noushin Alibakhshi

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Today, flexibility has turned to one of important issues in management theories and policies and most current discussions about flexibility patterns focus on management policies, so that these patterns are one of important aspects of human resources strategic management. This study was performed with the aim of assessing the flexibility rate of human resources and performance indexes of Tehran Medical Sciences University hospitals and determining the possible relation between these variables. The present study is descriptive – analytical which was conducted in cross-sectional form in 2015. The statistical population was selected by stratifies random sampling method as 317 persons from nursing, administrative and financial personnel of 5 hospitals of Tehran Medical Sciences University. Data collecting toll was hospitals performance indexes form and Wright & Snell flexibility questionnaire of human resources. Data analysis was performed using SPSS 18 software and with the aid of descriptive statistical indexes and linear regression analysis. The results showed that personnel ( human resources had high flexibility = 4.16.\tthere was a significant relation between total flexibility and the index of bed circulation so that by one unit increase in bed circulation space, normally, the average of total flexibility decreased 0.64 units ( p-value<0.05. The results showed that human resources of Tehran Medical Sciences University hospitals have high flexibility, so authorities and policy makers are suggested to adopt policies of human resources management for creating flexibility in human resources and improving hospitals performance and amending hospitals status.

  8. Selected questions of topical interest in human bioclimatology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jendritzky, G.

    1991-09-01

    This paper deals with the different effects of climate, and the likely impact of climatic change, on the human being, his health and well-being. Those effects follow from consideration of the human energy budget and air pollution, including photooxidants and radiation, the latter especially in the UV-range. The development of tools to produce bioclimate maps, i.e. maps expressed in physiologically significant terms, in different scales up to the high resolution necessary for the microscale urban climate, will be discussed. The most important questions in bioclimate research and its application will be considered.

  9. The Functions of Selected Human Rights Institutions and Related Role-Players in the Protection of Human Rights in Zimbabwe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Howard Chitimira

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Various violations of the human rights of ordinary people and human rights defenders have been reported in Zimbabwe since the late 1980s. It is widely acknowledged that such violations have been perpetrated mostly by the government through its different organs for political and other related reasons. Human rights violations were also easily committed against ordinary people and human rights defenders because there was no Constitution that adequately protected such people's fundamental human rights (including their civil and political rights and their socio-economic rights in Zimbabwe. Given this background, the article discusses the protection of human rights in Zimbabwe, in the light of the Zimbabwe Constitution Amendment Act 20 of 2013 (Zimbabwe Constitution 2013. This is done in order to investigate whether the promotion, protection, enforcement and respect for human rights in Zimbabwe has now improved. To this end, the functions of selected national human rights institutions and other related role-players, namely civil society, the judiciary, the law enforcement organs and the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission, are briefly discussed first. Secondly, the functions of selected regional and international institutions, namely the Southern African Development Community, the African Union and the United Nations are discussed in relation to the protection of human rights in Zimbabwe. Thereafter, concluding remarks and possible recommendations that could be utilised to combat human rights violations and enhance the protection of human rights in Zimbabwe are provided.

  10. Selective cognitive impairments associated with NMDA receptor blockade in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowland, Laura M; Astur, Robert S; Jung, Rex E; Bustillo, Juan R; Lauriello, John; Yeo, Ronald A

    2005-03-01

    Hypofunction of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) may be involved in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. NMDAR antagonists like ketamine induce schizophrenia-like features in humans. In rodent studies, NMDAR antagonism impairs learning by disrupting long-term potentiation (LTP) in the hippocampus. This study investigated the effects of ketamine on spatial learning (acquisition) vs retrieval in a virtual Morris water task in humans. Verbal fluency, working memory, and learning and memory of verbal information were also assessed. Healthy human subjects participated in this double-blinded, placebo-controlled study. On two separate occasions, ketamine/placebo was administered and cognitive tasks were assessed in association with behavioral ratings. Ketamine impaired learning of spatial and verbal information but retrieval of information learned prior to drug administration was preserved. Schizophrenia-like symptoms were significantly related to spatial and verbal learning performance. Ketamine did not significantly impair attention, verbal fluency, or verbal working memory task performance. Spatial working memory was slightly impaired. In conclusion, these results provide evidence for ketamine's differential impairment of verbal and spatial learning vs retrieval. By using the Morris water task, which is hippocampal-dependent, this study helps bridge the gap between nonhuman animal and human NMDAR antagonism research. Impaired cognition is a core feature of schizophrenia. A better understanding of NMDA antagonism, its physiological and cognitive consequences, may provide improved models of psychosis and cognitive therapeutics.

  11. The basic science and mathematics of random mutation and natural selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinman, Alan

    2014-12-20

    The mutation and natural selection phenomenon can and often does cause the failure of antimicrobial, herbicidal, pesticide and cancer treatments selection pressures. This phenomenon operates in a mathematically predictable behavior, which when understood leads to approaches to reduce and prevent the failure of the use of these selection pressures. The mathematical behavior of mutation and selection is derived using the principles given by probability theory. The derivation of the equations describing the mutation and selection phenomenon is carried out in the context of an empirical example. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  12. Process for Selecting System Level Assessments for Human System Technologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watts, James; Park, John

    2006-01-01

    The integration of many life support systems necessary to construct a stable habitat is difficult. The correct identification of the appropriate technologies and corresponding interfaces is an exhaustive process. Once technologies are selected secondary issues such as mechanical and electrical interfaces must be addressed. The required analytical and testing work must be approached in a piecewise fashion to achieve timely results. A repeatable process has been developed to identify and prioritize system level assessments and testing needs. This Assessment Selection Process has been defined to assess cross cutting integration issues on topics at the system or component levels. Assessments are used to identify risks, encourage future actions to mitigate risks, or spur further studies.

  13. Inducing self-selected human engagement in robotic locomotion training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Steven H; Jackson, Rachel W

    2013-06-01

    Stroke leads to severe mobility impairments for millions of individuals each year. Functional outcomes can be improved through manual treadmill therapy, but high costs limit patient exposure and, thereby, outcomes. Robotic gait training could increase the viable duration and frequency of training sessions, but robotic approaches employed thus far have been less effective than manual therapy. These shortcomings may relate to subconscious energy-minimizing drives, which might cause patients to engage less actively in therapy when provided with corrective robotic assistance. We have devised a new method for gait rehabilitation that harnesses, rather than fights, least-effort tendencies. Therapeutic goals, such as increased use of the paretic limb, are made easier than the patient's nominal gait through selective assistance from a robotic platform. We performed a pilot test on a healthy subject (N = 1) in which altered self-selected stride length was induced using a tethered robotic ankle-foot orthosis. The subject first walked on a treadmill while wearing the orthosis with and without assistance at unaltered and voluntarily altered stride length. Voluntarily increasing stride length by 5% increased metabolic energy cost by 4%. Robotic assistance decreased energy cost at both unaltered and voluntarily increased stride lengths, by 6% and 8% respectively. We then performed a test in which the robotic system continually monitored stride length and provided more assistance if the subject's stride length approached a target increase. This adaptive assistance protocol caused the subject to slowly adjust their gait patterns towards the target, leading to a 4% increase in stride length. Metabolic energy consumption was simultaneously reduced by 5%. These results suggest that selective-assistance protocols based on targets relevant to rehabilitation might lead patients to self-select desirable gait patterns during robotic gait training sessions, possibly facilitating better

  14. IL-6 selectively stimulates fat metabolism in human skeletal muscle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wolsk, Emil; Mygind, Helene; Grøndahl, Thomas S

    2010-01-01

    and glucose metabolism and signaling of both adipose tissue and skeletal muscle. Eight healthy postabsorptive males were infused with either rhIL-6 or saline for 4 h, eliciting IL-6 levels of ~40 and ~1 pg/ml, respectively. Systemic, skeletal muscle, and adipose tissue fat and glucose metabolism was assessed......Interleukin (IL)-6 is chronically elevated in type 2 diabetes but also during exercise. However, the exact metabolic role, and hence the physiological significance, has not been elucidated. The objective of this study was to investigate the in vivo effect of recombinant human (rh) IL-6 on human fat...... before, during, and 2 h after cessation of the infusion. Glucose metabolism was unaffected by rhIL-6. In contrast, rhIL-6 increased systemic fatty acid oxidation approximately twofold after 60 min, and it remained elevated even 2 h after the infusion. The increase in oxidation was followed by an increase...

  15. IL-6 selectively stimulates fat metabolism in human skeletal muscle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wolsk, Emil; Mygind, Helene; Grøndahl, Thomas S

    2010-01-01

    and glucose metabolism and signaling of both adipose tissue and skeletal muscle. Eight healthy postabsorptive males were infused with either rhIL-6 or saline for 4 h, eliciting IL-6 levels of ∼40 and ∼1 pg/ml, respectively. Systemic, skeletal muscle, and adipose tissue fat and glucose metabolism was assessed......Interleukin (IL)-6 is chronically elevated in type 2 diabetes but also during exercise. However, the exact metabolic role, and hence the physiological significance, has not been elucidated. The objective of this study was to investigate the in vivo effect of recombinant human (rh) IL-6 on human fat...... before, during, and 2 h after cessation of the infusion. Glucose metabolism was unaffected by rhIL-6. In contrast, rhIL-6 increased systemic fatty acid oxidation approximately twofold after 60 min, and it remained elevated even 2 h after the infusion. The increase in oxidation was followed by an increase...

  16. Human Performance: Psychological and Physiological Sex Differences (A Selected Bibliography)

    Science.gov (United States)

    1980-02-01

    Sons, 1977. 6 15. Horn, J, L. Human abilities: A review of research and theory in the early 1970’s. Annual Review of Psychology. 1976, 27^, 437...Mother-Infant Interaction, Howard A. Moss. 149. Sex of Parent X Sex of Child: Socioemotional Development, Micheal Lewis and Marsha Weinraub. 165...C. Thomas, 1971. Contents: Biology of Sex Differences. 3. Psychological Sex Differences. 12. Freudian Theory of Feminine Development. 43. The

  17. Human Resource Diversity Management in Selected Czech Agricultural Companies

    OpenAIRE

    H. Urbancová; H. Čermáková; M. Navrátilov

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this paper is to evaluate human resource Diversity Management in agricultural companies in the Czech Republic and to prepare a set of recommendations for the companies in this area. The primary data for the study was obtained by the use of questionnaires designed for quantitative analysis (n = 549, n agriculture = 108). The results indicate that the use of Diversity Management on Czech companies is relatively low (36.1%; n a = 108). But in view ...

  18. Neurons in the human amygdala selective for perceived emotion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shuo; Tudusciuc, Oana; Mamelak, Adam N.; Ross, Ian B.; Adolphs, Ralph; Rutishauser, Ueli

    2014-01-01

    The human amygdala plays a key role in recognizing facial emotions and neurons in the monkey and human amygdala respond to the emotional expression of faces. However, it remains unknown whether these responses are driven primarily by properties of the stimulus or by the perceptual judgments of the perceiver. We investigated these questions by recording from over 200 single neurons in the amygdalae of 7 neurosurgical patients with implanted depth electrodes. We presented degraded fear and happy faces and asked subjects to discriminate their emotion by button press. During trials where subjects responded correctly, we found neurons that distinguished fear vs. happy emotions as expressed by the displayed faces. During incorrect trials, these neurons indicated the patients’ subjective judgment. Additional analysis revealed that, on average, all neuronal responses were modulated most by increases or decreases in response to happy faces, and driven predominantly by judgments about the eye region of the face stimuli. Following the same analyses, we showed that hippocampal neurons, unlike amygdala neurons, only encoded emotions but not subjective judgment. Our results suggest that the amygdala specifically encodes the subjective judgment of emotional faces, but that it plays less of a role in simply encoding aspects of the image array. The conscious percept of the emotion shown in a face may thus arise from interactions between the amygdala and its connections within a distributed cortical network, a scheme also consistent with the long response latencies observed in human amygdala recordings. PMID:24982200

  19. Selection of anchor values for human error probability estimation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buffardi, L.C.; Fleishman, E.A.; Allen, J.A.

    1989-01-01

    There is a need for more dependable information to assist in the prediction of human errors in nuclear power environments. The major objective of the current project is to establish guidelines for using error probabilities from other task settings to estimate errors in the nuclear environment. This involves: (1) identifying critical nuclear tasks, (2) discovering similar tasks in non-nuclear environments, (3) finding error data for non-nuclear tasks, and (4) establishing error-rate values for the nuclear tasks based on the non-nuclear data. A key feature is the application of a classification system to nuclear and non-nuclear tasks to evaluate their similarities and differences in order to provide a basis for generalizing human error estimates across tasks. During the first eight months of the project, several classification systems have been applied to a sample of nuclear tasks. They are discussed in terms of their potential for establishing task equivalence and transferability of human error rates across situations

  20. Effect of intradermal human recombinant copper-zinc superoxide dismutase on random pattern flaps in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schein, Ophir; Westreich, Melvyn; Shalom, Avshalom

    2013-09-01

    Studies have focused on enhancing flap viability using superoxide dismutase (SOD), but only a few used SOD from human origin, and most gave the compound systemically. We evaluated the ability of SOD to improve random skin flap survival using human recombinant copper-zinc superoxide dismutase (Hr-CuZnSOD) in variable doses, injected intradermally into the flap. Seventy male Sprague Dawley rats were randomly assigned into 4 groups. Cephalic random pattern flaps were elevated on their backs and intradermal injections of different dosages of Hr-CuZnSOD were given 15 minutes before surgery. Flap survival was evaluated by fluorescein fluorescence. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) and t test statistical analyses were performed. Flap survival in all treated groups was significantly better than in the controls. The beneficial effect of HR-CuZnSOD on flap survival is attained when it is given intradermally into the flap tissue. Theoretically, Hr-CuZnSOD delivered with local anesthetics used in flap elevation may be a valuable clinical tool. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Nebulization and selective deposition of LTD4 in human lungs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bisgaard, H; Poulsen, L; Søndergaard, I

    1987-01-01

    volunteers were challenged on separate days with 40 nmol LTD4 or 100 mumol histamine, and the changes in FEV1 and partial flow volume curves initiated at 50% of vital capacity (Vmax30) were measured. A relative diffuse deposition pattern was ensured by inhalation via a settling bag. These results were...... changed in parallel when the deposition of the mediators was changed to a more central pattern. This indicates that the two mediators do not differ with respect to any selective effects on different parts of the airways....

  2. Selecting for Fast Protein-Protein Association As Demonstrated on a Random TEM1 Yeast Library Binding BLIP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen-Khait, Ruth; Schreiber, Gideon

    2018-04-27

    Protein-protein interactions mediate the vast majority of cellular processes. Though protein interactions obey basic chemical principles also within the cell, the in vivo physiological environment may not allow for equilibrium to be reached. Thus, in vitro measured thermodynamic affinity may not provide a complete picture of protein interactions in the biological context. Binding kinetics composed of the association and dissociation rate constants are relevant and important in the cell. Therefore, changes in protein-protein interaction kinetics have a significant impact on the in vivo activity of the proteins. The common protocol for the selection of tighter binders from a mutant library selects for protein complexes with slower dissociation rate constants. Here we describe a method to specifically select for variants with faster association rate constants by using pre-equilibrium selection, starting from a large random library. Toward this end, we refine the selection conditions of a TEM1-β-lactamase library against its natural nanomolar affinity binder β-lactamase inhibitor protein (BLIP). The optimal selection conditions depend on the ligand concentration and on the incubation time. In addition, we show that a second sort of the library helps to separate signal from noise, resulting in a higher percent of faster binders in the selected library. Fast associating protein variants are of particular interest for drug development and other biotechnological applications.

  3. Natural selection and the distribution of identity-by-descent in the human genome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Albrechtsen, Anders; Moltke, Ida; Nielsen, Rasmus

    2010-01-01

    There has recently been considerable interest in detecting natural selection in the human genome. Selection will usually tend to increase identity-by-descent (IBD) among individuals in a population, and many methods for detecting recent and ongoing positive selection indirectly take advantage...... of this. In this article we show that excess IBD sharing is a general property of natural selection and we show that this fact makes it possible to detect several types of selection including a type that is otherwise difficult to detect: selection acting on standing genetic variation. Motivated by this......, we use a recently developed method for identifying IBD sharing among individuals from genome-wide data to scan populations from the new HapMap phase 3 project for regions with excess IBD sharing in order to identify regions in the human genome that have been under strong, very recent selection...

  4. Personnel Selection Influences on Remotely Piloted Aircraft Human-System Integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carretta, Thomas R; King, Raymond E

    2015-08-01

    Human-system integration (HSI) is a complex process used to design and develop systems that integrate human capabilities and limitations in an effective and affordable manner. Effective HSI incorporates several domains, including manpower, personnel and training, human factors, environment, safety, occupational health, habitability, survivability, logistics, intelligence, mobility, and command and control. To achieve effective HSI, the relationships among these domains must be considered. Although this integrated approach is well documented, there are many instances where it is not followed. Human factors engineers typically focus on system design with little attention to the skills, abilities, and other characteristics needed by human operators. When problems with fielded systems occur, additional training of personnel is developed and conducted. Personnel selection is seldom considered during the HSI process. Complex systems such as aviation require careful selection of the individuals who will interact with the system. Personnel selection is a two-stage process involving select-in and select-out procedures. Select-in procedures determine which candidates have the aptitude to profit from training and represent the best investment. Select-out procedures focus on medical qualification and determine who should not enter training for medical reasons. The current paper discusses the role of personnel selection in the HSI process in the context of remotely piloted aircraft systems.

  5. Randomized clinical trial of human interleukin-11 in dengue fever-associated thrombocytopenia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suliman, M.I.; Qayum, I.

    2014-01-01

    Objective: To assess the effectiveness of recombinant human (rh) IL-11 to increase platelets count in patients suffering from Dengue fever (DF). Study Design: Randomized double blind placebo control study. Place and Duration of Study: Farooq Hospital, Lahore, from July to October 2011. Methodology: Forty hospitalized patients suffering from Dengue fever having platelets count A 30000 per micro liter were randomly categorized into two groups, rhIL-11 (test) and distilled water (placebo) groups. The efficacy outcomes (as indicated by step up in platelets count at 48 hours) for the treatment group were compared with the outcomes for the placebo group. Results: The data revealed that the increase in platelet response with recombinant human interleukin 11, 1.5 mg subcutaneously is significantly more brisk than the placebo group. The platelets response in patients with severe thrombocytopenia was greater in the treatment group (50%) at 48 hours as compared to the placebo group (20%) (p=0.047). Response rate was slightly greater among males (6/10, 60%) than females (8/16, 50%); moreover, three-fourth (75%) female responders were in the placebo group, compared to half (50%) male responders in the treatment group. Conclusion: Results of the study suggest that treatment of severe thrombocytopenia accompanying DF with recombinant human interleukin 11 may be a useful therapeutic option. (author)

  6. Discovery and development of inhibitors selective for human constitutive proteasome and immunoproteasome active sites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Xin, B.

    2017-01-01

    This thesis describes the design and development of subunit‐selective inhibitors of particular catalytically active subunits of human constitutive proteasomes and immunoproteasomes. Most existing proteasome inhibitors are oligopeptides composed of 2‐4 amino acid residues, N‐terminally

  7. Double suicide genes selectively kill human umbilical vein endothelial cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liu Lunxu

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background To construct a recombinant adenovirus containing CDglyTK double suicide genes and evaluate the killing effect of the double suicide genes driven by kinase domain insert containing receptor (KDR promoter on human umbilical vein endothelial cells. Methods Human KDR promoter, Escherichia coli (E. coli cytosine deaminase (CD gene and the herpes simplex virus-thymidine kinase (TK gene were cloned using polymerase chain reaction (PCR. Plasmid pKDR-CDglyTK was constructed with the KDR promoter and CDglyTK genes. A recombinant adenoviral plasmid AdKDR-CDglyTK was then constructed and transfected into 293 packaging cells to grow and harvest adenoviruses. KDR-expressing human umbilical vein endothelial cells (ECV304 and KDR-negative liver cancer cell line (HepG2 were infected with the recombinant adenoviruses at different multiplicity of infection (MOI. The infection rate was measured by green fluorescent protein (GFP expression. The infected cells were cultured in culture media containing different concentrations of prodrugs ganciclovir (GCV and/or 5-fluorocytosine (5-FC. The killing effects were measured using two different methods, i.e. annexin V-FITC staining and terminal transferase-mediated dUTP nick end-labeling (TUNEL staining. Results Recombinant adenoviruses AdKDR-CDglyTK were successfully constructed and they infected ECV304 and HepG2 cells efficiently. The infection rate was dependent on MOI of recombinant adenoviruses. ECV304 cells infected with AdKDR-CDglyTK were highly sensitive to GCV and 5-FC. The cell survival rate was dependent on both the concentration of the prodrugs and the MOI of recombinant adenoviruses. In contrast, there were no killing effects in the HepG2 cells. The combination of two prodrugs was much more effective in killing ECV304 cells than GCV or 5-FC alone. The growth of transgenic ECV304 cells was suppressed in the presence of prodrugs. Conclusion AdKDR-CDglyTK/double prodrog system may be a useful

  8. Selected aspects of organizational culture vs. formation of Human Capital

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aneta Kisiel

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The awareness of employees in relation to organizational culture existing in a company and their knowledge in this subject - have a crucial meaning. In the face of intensity of transformations, constant searching for the best solutions which bring the organization closer to success seams necessary. The organizational culture can help employees among others to: engage in performance of tasks. Organizational culture helps to understand mission, strategy of the organization and assumptions carried out by it. The purpose of this paper is the description of different aspects of organizational culture with reference to actions taken in the scope of management of human resources. The nature of leadership was also stressed in shaping the organizational culture. The analysis of literature in the field of management, own experience and observation of the author in the above mentioned matter made it possible to respond to the research problem presented in this paper.

  9. Isolation of human simple repeat loci by hybridization selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armour, J A; Neumann, R; Gobert, S; Jeffreys, A J

    1994-04-01

    We have isolated short tandem repeat arrays from the human genome, using a rapid method involving filter hybridization to enrich for tri- or tetranucleotide tandem repeats. About 30% of clones from the enriched library cross-hybridize with probes containing trimeric or tetrameric tandem arrays, facilitating the rapid isolation of large numbers of clones. In an initial analysis of 54 clones, 46 different tandem arrays were identified. Analysis of these tandem repeat loci by PCR showed that 24 were polymorphic in length; substantially higher levels of polymorphism were displayed by the tetrameric repeat loci isolated than by the trimeric repeats. Primary mapping of these loci by linkage analysis showed that they derive from 17 chromosomes, including the X chromosome. We anticipate the use of this strategy for the efficient isolation of tandem repeats from other sources of genomic DNA, including DNA from flow-sorted chromosomes, and from other species.

  10. Objective Model Selection for Identifying the Human Feedforward Response in Manual Control

    OpenAIRE

    Drop, F.M.; Pool, D.M.; van Paassen, M.M.; Mulder, M.; Bülthoff, Heinrich H.

    2017-01-01

    Realistic manual control tasks typically involve predictable target signals and random disturbances. The human controller (HC) is hypothesized to use a feedforward control strategy for target-following, in addition to feedback control for disturbance-rejection. Little is known about human feedforward control, partly because common system identification methods have difficulty in identifying whether, and (if so) how, the HC applies a feedforward strategy. In this paper, an identification proce...

  11. r2VIM: A new variable selection method for random forests in genome-wide association studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szymczak, Silke; Holzinger, Emily; Dasgupta, Abhijit; Malley, James D; Molloy, Anne M; Mills, James L; Brody, Lawrence C; Stambolian, Dwight; Bailey-Wilson, Joan E

    2016-01-01

    Machine learning methods and in particular random forests (RFs) are a promising alternative to standard single SNP analyses in genome-wide association studies (GWAS). RFs provide variable importance measures (VIMs) to rank SNPs according to their predictive power. However, in contrast to the established genome-wide significance threshold, no clear criteria exist to determine how many SNPs should be selected for downstream analyses. We propose a new variable selection approach, recurrent relative variable importance measure (r2VIM). Importance values are calculated relative to an observed minimal importance score for several runs of RF and only SNPs with large relative VIMs in all of the runs are selected as important. Evaluations on simulated GWAS data show that the new method controls the number of false-positives under the null hypothesis. Under a simple alternative hypothesis with several independent main effects it is only slightly less powerful than logistic regression. In an experimental GWAS data set, the same strong signal is identified while the approach selects none of the SNPs in an underpowered GWAS. The novel variable selection method r2VIM is a promising extension to standard RF for objectively selecting relevant SNPs in GWAS while controlling the number of false-positive results.

  12. Selection of human capital in metallurgical companies using information technology (IT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. Iancu

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Personnel selection is a process that takes place in a company in order to have better business performance and competitive advantage. Nowadays, companies have realized the importance of human capital as a necessity for survival in today’s competitive market. There are several methods for selecting staff, but this paper seeks to demonstrate that this selection can be done with the help of an expert system. Metallurgical companies face even greater challenges for managing personnel selection. This research will discover and test the key elements of management personnel selection and implementation of an expert system.

  13. Feature selection and classification of mechanical fault of an induction motor using random forest classifier

    OpenAIRE

    Patel, Raj Kumar; Giri, V.K.

    2016-01-01

    Fault detection and diagnosis is the most important technology in condition-based maintenance (CBM) system for rotating machinery. This paper experimentally explores the development of a random forest (RF) classifier, a recently emerged machine learning technique, for multi-class mechanical fault diagnosis in bearing of an induction motor. Firstly, the vibration signals are collected from the bearing using accelerometer sensor. Parameters from the vibration signal are extracted in the form of...

  14. Recent adaptive events in human brain revealed by meta-analysis of positively selected genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yue Huang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Analysis of positively-selected genes can help us understand how human evolved, especially the evolution of highly developed cognitive functions. However, previous works have reached conflicting conclusions regarding whether human neuronal genes are over-represented among genes under positive selection. METHODS AND RESULTS: We divided positively-selected genes into four groups according to the identification approaches, compiling a comprehensive list from 27 previous studies. We showed that genes that are highly expressed in the central nervous system are enriched in recent positive selection events in human history identified by intra-species genomic scan, especially in brain regions related to cognitive functions. This pattern holds when different datasets, parameters and analysis pipelines were used. Functional category enrichment analysis supported these findings, showing that synapse-related functions are enriched in genes under recent positive selection. In contrast, immune-related functions, for instance, are enriched in genes under ancient positive selection revealed by inter-species coding region comparison. We further demonstrated that most of these patterns still hold even after controlling for genomic characteristics that might bias genome-wide identification of positively-selected genes including gene length, gene density, GC composition, and intensity of negative selection. CONCLUSION: Our rigorous analysis resolved previous conflicting conclusions and revealed recent adaptation of human brain functions.

  15. Probability for human intake of an atom randomly released into ground, rivers, oceans and air

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cohen, B L

    1984-08-01

    Numerical estimates are developed for the probability of an atom randomly released in the top ground layers, in a river, or in the oceans to be ingested orally by a human, and for an atom emitted from an industrial source to be inhaled by a human. Estimates are obtained for both probability per year and for total eventual probability. Results vary considerably for different elements, but typical values for total probabilities are: ground, 3 X 10/sup -3/, oceans, 3 X 10/sup -4/; rivers, 1.7 x 10/sup -4/; and air, 5 X 10/sup -6/. Probabilities per year are typcially 1 X 10/sup -7/ for releases into the ground and 5 X 10/sup -8/ for releases into the oceans. These results indicate that for material with very long-lasting toxicity, it is important to include the pathways from the ground and from the oceans.

  16. Neutral Theory: From Complex Population History to Natural Selection and Sociocultural Phenomena in Human Populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Austerlitz, Frédéric; Heyer, Evelyne

    2018-06-01

    Here, we present a synthetic view on how Kimura's Neutral theory has helped us gaining insight on the different evolutionary forces that shape human evolution. We put this perspective in the frame of recent emerging challenges: the use of whole genome data for reconstructing population histories, natural selection on complex polygenic traits, and integrating cultural processes in human evolution.

  17. Comparison of confirmed inactive and randomly selected compounds as negative training examples in support vector machine-based virtual screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heikamp, Kathrin; Bajorath, Jürgen

    2013-07-22

    The choice of negative training data for machine learning is a little explored issue in chemoinformatics. In this study, the influence of alternative sets of negative training data and different background databases on support vector machine (SVM) modeling and virtual screening has been investigated. Target-directed SVM models have been derived on the basis of differently composed training sets containing confirmed inactive molecules or randomly selected database compounds as negative training instances. These models were then applied to search background databases consisting of biological screening data or randomly assembled compounds for available hits. Negative training data were found to systematically influence compound recall in virtual screening. In addition, different background databases had a strong influence on the search results. Our findings also indicated that typical benchmark settings lead to an overestimation of SVM-based virtual screening performance compared to search conditions that are more relevant for practical applications.

  18. Construction of human antibody gene libraries and selection of antibodies by phage display.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frenzel, André; Kügler, Jonas; Wilke, Sonja; Schirrmann, Thomas; Hust, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Antibody phage display is the most commonly used in vitro selection technology and has yielded thousands of useful antibodies for research, diagnostics, and therapy.The prerequisite for successful generation and development of human recombinant antibodies using phage display is the construction of a high-quality antibody gene library. Here, we describe the methods for the construction of human immune and naive scFv gene libraries.The success also depends on the panning strategy for the selection of binders from these libraries. In this article, we describe a panning strategy that is high-throughput compatible and allows parallel selection in microtiter plates.

  19. Design of a Handheld Pseudo Random Coded UWB Radar for Human Sensing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xia Zheng-huan

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the design of a handheld pseudo random coded Ultra-WideBand (UWB radar for human sensing. The main tasks of the radar are to track the moving human object and extract the human respiratory frequency. In order to achieve perfect penetrability and good range resolution, m sequence with a carrier of 800 MHz is chosen as the transmitting signal. The modulated m-sequence can be generated directly by the high-speed DAC and FPGA to reduce the size of the radar system, and the mean power of the transmitting signal is 5 dBm. The receiver has two receiving channels based on hybrid sampling, the first receiving channel is to sample the reference signal and the second receiving channel is to obtain the radar echo. The real-time pulse compression is computed in parallel with a group of on-chip DSP48E slices in FPGA to improve the scanning rate of the radar system. Additionally, the algorithms of moving target tracking and life detection are implemented using Intel’s micro-processor, and the detection results are sent to the micro displayer fixed on the helmet. The experimental results show that the moving target located at less than 16 m far away from the wall can be tracked, and the respiratory frequency of the static human at less than 14 m far away from the wall can be extracted.

  20. Ancient and recent positive selection transformed opioid cis-regulation in humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew V Rockman

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Changes in the cis-regulation of neural genes likely contributed to the evolution of our species' unique attributes, but evidence of a role for natural selection has been lacking. We found that positive natural selection altered the cis-regulation of human prodynorphin, the precursor molecule for a suite of endogenous opioids and neuropeptides with critical roles in regulating perception, behavior, and memory. Independent lines of phylogenetic and population genetic evidence support a history of selective sweeps driving the evolution of the human prodynorphin promoter. In experimental assays of chimpanzee-human hybrid promoters, the selected sequence increases transcriptional inducibility. The evidence for a change in the response of the brain's natural opioids to inductive stimuli points to potential human-specific characteristics favored during evolution. In addition, the pattern of linked nucleotide and microsatellite variation among and within modern human populations suggests that recent selection, subsequent to the fixation of the human-specific mutations and the peopling of the globe, has favored different prodynorphin cis-regulatory alleles in different parts of the world.

  1. Natural selection affects multiple aspects of genetic variation at putatively neutral sites across the human genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lohmueller, Kirk E; Albrechtsen, Anders; Li, Yingrui; Kim, Su Yeon; Korneliussen, Thorfinn; Vinckenbosch, Nicolas; Tian, Geng; Huerta-Sanchez, Emilia; Feder, Alison F; Grarup, Niels; Jørgensen, Torben; Jiang, Tao; Witte, Daniel R; Sandbæk, Annelli; Hellmann, Ines; Lauritzen, Torsten; Hansen, Torben; Pedersen, Oluf; Wang, Jun; Nielsen, Rasmus

    2011-10-01

    A major question in evolutionary biology is how natural selection has shaped patterns of genetic variation across the human genome. Previous work has documented a reduction in genetic diversity in regions of the genome with low recombination rates. However, it is unclear whether other summaries of genetic variation, like allele frequencies, are also correlated with recombination rate and whether these correlations can be explained solely by negative selection against deleterious mutations or whether positive selection acting on favorable alleles is also required. Here we attempt to address these questions by analyzing three different genome-wide resequencing datasets from European individuals. We document several significant correlations between different genomic features. In particular, we find that average minor allele frequency and diversity are reduced in regions of low recombination and that human diversity, human-chimp divergence, and average minor allele frequency are reduced near genes. Population genetic simulations show that either positive natural selection acting on favorable mutations or negative natural selection acting against deleterious mutations can explain these correlations. However, models with strong positive selection on nonsynonymous mutations and little negative selection predict a stronger negative correlation between neutral diversity and nonsynonymous divergence than observed in the actual data, supporting the importance of negative, rather than positive, selection throughout the genome. Further, we show that the widespread presence of weakly deleterious alleles, rather than a small number of strongly positively selected mutations, is responsible for the correlation between neutral genetic diversity and recombination rate. This work suggests that natural selection has affected multiple aspects of linked neutral variation throughout the human genome and that positive selection is not required to explain these observations.

  2. Novel Zn2+-chelating peptides selected from a fimbria-displayed random peptide library

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjærgaard, Kristian; Schembri, Mark; Klemm, Per

    2001-01-01

    The display of peptide sequences on the surface of bacteria is a technology that offers exciting applications in biotechnology and medical research. Type 1 fimbriae are surface organelles of Escherichia coli which mediate D-mannose-sensitive binding to different host surfaces by virtue of the Fim......H adhesin. FimH is a component of the fimbrial organelle that can accommodate and display a diverse range of peptide sequences on the E. coli cell surface. In this study we have constructed a random peptide library in FimH. The library, consisting of similar to 40 million individual clones, was screened...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Skarin

    2004-04-01

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

  4. The role of protozoa-driven selection in shaping human genetic variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pozzoli, Uberto; Fumagalli, Matteo; Cagliani, Rachele; Comi, Giacomo P; Bresolin, Nereo; Clerici, Mario; Sironi, Manuela

    2010-03-01

    Protozoa exert a strong selective pressure in humans. The selection signatures left by these pathogens can be exploited to identify genetic modulators of infection susceptibility. We show that protozoa diversity in different geographic locations is a good measure of protozoa-driven selective pressure; protozoa diversity captured selection signatures at known malaria resistance loci and identified several selected single nucleotide polymorphisms in immune and hemolytic anemia genes. A genome-wide search enabled us to identify 5180 variants mapping to 1145 genes that are subjected to protozoa-driven selective pressure. We provide a genome-wide estimate of protozoa-driven selective pressure and identify candidate susceptibility genes for protozoa-borne diseases. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Effects of environmental changes on natural selection active on human polygenic traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulizzi, L

    1993-06-01

    During the last century, industrialized countries experienced such an improvement in socioeconomic conditions and in sanitation that it is likely that the selective forces active on human metric traits have been modified. Perinatal mortality as a function of birth weight is one of the clearest examples of natural selection in humans. Here, trends over time of stabilizing and directional selection associated with birth weight have been analyzed in Japan from 1969 to 1989. The population of newborns has been subdivided according to gestational age, which is one of the main covariates of birth weight. The results show that in full-term babies both stabilizing and directional selection are coming to an end, whereas in babies born after 8 months of gestation these selective forces are still active, even if at much lower levels than in the past. The peculiar results found in the 7-month-gestation population are probably due to grossly abnormal cases of immaturity.

  6. Predictive Validity of an Empirical Approach for Selecting Promising Message Topics: A Randomized-Controlled Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Stella Juhyun; Brennan, Emily; Gibson, Laura Anne; Tan, Andy S. L.; Kybert-Momjian, Ani; Liu, Jiaying; Hornik, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Several message topic selection approaches propose that messages based on beliefs pretested and found to be more strongly associated with intentions will be more effective in changing population intentions and behaviors when used in a campaign. This study aimed to validate the underlying causal assumption of these approaches which rely on cross-sectional belief–intention associations. We experimentally tested whether messages addressing promising themes as identified by the above criterion were more persuasive than messages addressing less promising themes. Contrary to expectations, all messages increased intentions. Interestingly, mediation analyses showed that while messages deemed promising affected intentions through changes in targeted promising beliefs, messages deemed less promising also achieved persuasion by influencing nontargeted promising beliefs. Implications for message topic selection are discussed. PMID:27867218

  7. Oracle Efficient Variable Selection in Random and Fixed Effects Panel Data Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kock, Anders Bredahl

    This paper generalizes the results for the Bridge estimator of Huang et al. (2008) to linear random and fixed effects panel data models which are allowed to grow in both dimensions. In particular we show that the Bridge estimator is oracle efficient. It can correctly distinguish between relevant...... and irrelevant variables and the asymptotic distribution of the estimators of the coefficients of the relevant variables is the same as if only these had been included in the model, i.e. as if an oracle had revealed the true model prior to estimation. In the case of more explanatory variables than observations......, we prove that the Marginal Bridge estimator can asymptotically correctly distinguish between relevant and irrelevant explanatory variables. We do this without restricting the dependence between covariates and without assuming sub Gaussianity of the error terms thereby generalizing the results...

  8. Presence of psychoactive substances in oral fluid from randomly selected drivers in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Simonsen, K. Wiese; Steentoft, A.; Hels, Tove

    2012-01-01

    . The percentage of drivers positive for medicinal drugs above the Danish legal concentration limit was 0.4%; while, 0.3% of the drivers tested positive for one or more illicit drug at concentrations exceeding the Danish legal limit. Tetrahydrocannabinol, cocaine, and amphetamine were the most frequent illicit......This roadside study is the Danish part of the EU-project DRUID (Driving under the Influence of Drugs, Alcohol, and Medicines) and included three representative regions in Denmark. Oral fluid samples (n = 3002) were collected randomly from drivers using a sampling scheme stratified by time, season......, and road type. The oral fluid samples were screened for 29 illegal and legal psychoactive substances and metabolites as well as ethanol. Fourteen (0.5%) drivers were positive for ethanol alone or in combination with drugs) at concentrations above 0.53 g/l (0.5 mg/g), which is the Danish legal limit...

  9. Habitat selection of a large carnivore along human-wildlife boundaries in a highly modified landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chihiro Takahata

    Full Text Available When large carnivores occupy peripheral human lands conflict with humans becomes inevitable, and the reduction of human-carnivore interactions must be the first consideration for those concerned with conflict mitigation. Studies designed to identify areas of high human-bear interaction are crucial for prioritizing management actions. Due to a surge in conflicts, against a background of social intolerance to wildlife and the prevalent use of lethal control throughout Japan, Asiatic black bears (Ursus thibetanus are now threatened by high rates of mortality. There is an urgent need to reduce the frequency of human-bear encounters if bear populations are to be conserved. To this end, we estimated the habitats that relate to human-bear interactions by sex and season using resource selection functions (RSF. Significant seasonal differences in selection for and avoidance of areas by bears were estimated by distance-effect models with interaction terms of land cover and sex. Human-bear boundaries were delineated on the basis of defined bear-habitat edges in order to identify areas that are in most need of proactive management strategies. Asiatic black bears selected habitats in close proximity to forest edges, forest roads, rivers, and red pine and riparian forests during the peak conflict season and this was correctly predicted in our human-bear boundary maps. Our findings demonstrated that bears selected abandoned forests and agricultural lands, indicating that it should be possible to reduce animal use near human lands by restoring season-specific habitat in relatively remote areas. Habitat-based conflict mitigation may therefore provide a practical means of creating adequate separation between humans and these large carnivores.

  10. Habitat selection of a large carnivore along human-wildlife boundaries in a highly modified landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahata, Chihiro; Nielsen, Scott Eric; Takii, Akiko; Izumiyama, Shigeyuki

    2014-01-01

    When large carnivores occupy peripheral human lands conflict with humans becomes inevitable, and the reduction of human-carnivore interactions must be the first consideration for those concerned with conflict mitigation. Studies designed to identify areas of high human-bear interaction are crucial for prioritizing management actions. Due to a surge in conflicts, against a background of social intolerance to wildlife and the prevalent use of lethal control throughout Japan, Asiatic black bears (Ursus thibetanus) are now threatened by high rates of mortality. There is an urgent need to reduce the frequency of human-bear encounters if bear populations are to be conserved. To this end, we estimated the habitats that relate to human-bear interactions by sex and season using resource selection functions (RSF). Significant seasonal differences in selection for and avoidance of areas by bears were estimated by distance-effect models with interaction terms of land cover and sex. Human-bear boundaries were delineated on the basis of defined bear-habitat edges in order to identify areas that are in most need of proactive management strategies. Asiatic black bears selected habitats in close proximity to forest edges, forest roads, rivers, and red pine and riparian forests during the peak conflict season and this was correctly predicted in our human-bear boundary maps. Our findings demonstrated that bears selected abandoned forests and agricultural lands, indicating that it should be possible to reduce animal use near human lands by restoring season-specific habitat in relatively remote areas. Habitat-based conflict mitigation may therefore provide a practical means of creating adequate separation between humans and these large carnivores.

  11. Impact of human milk pasteurization on gastric digestion in preterm infants: a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Oliveira, Samira C; Bellanger, Amandine; Ménard, Olivia; Pladys, Patrick; Le Gouar, Yann; Dirson, Emelyne; Kroell, Florian; Dupont, Didier; Deglaire, Amélie; Bourlieu, Claire

    2017-02-01

    Holder pasteurization has been reported to modify human milk composition and structure by inactivating bile salt-stimulated lipase (BSSL) and partially denaturing some of its proteins, potentially affecting its subsequent digestion. We sought to determine the impact of human milk pasteurization on gastric digestion (particularly for proteins and lipids) in preterm infants who were fed their mothers' own milk either raw or pasteurized. In a randomized controlled trial, 12 hospitalized tube-fed preterm infants were their own control group in comparing the gastric digestion of raw human milk (RHM) with pasteurized human milk (PHM). Over a 6-d sequence, gastric aspirates were collected 2 times/d before and after RHM or PHM ingestion. The impact of milk pasteurization digestive kinetics and disintegration was tested with the use of a general linear mixed model. Despite inactivating BSSL, instantaneous lipolysis was not affected by pasteurization (mean ± SD at 90 min: 12.6% ± 4.7%; P > 0.05). Lipolysis occurred in milk before digestion and was higher for PHM than for RHM (mean ± SD: 3.2% ± 0.6% and 2.2% ± 0.8%, respectively; P Pasteurization enhanced the proteolysis of lactoferrin (P Pasteurization did not affect gastric emptying (∼30-min half time) or pH (mean ± SD: 4.4 ± 0.8) at 90 min. Overall, pasteurization had no impact on the gastric digestion of lipids and some proteins from human milk but did affect lactoferrin and α-lactalbumin proteolysis and emulsion disintegration. Freeze-thawing and pasteurization increased the milk lipolysis before digestion but did not affect gastric lipolysis. Possible consequences on intestinal digestion and associated nutritional outcomes were not considered in this study. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT02112331. © 2017 American Society for Nutrition.

  12. Correlates of smoking with socioeconomic status, leisure time physical activity and alcohol consumption among Polish adults from randomly selected regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woitas-Slubowska, Donata; Hurnik, Elzbieta; Skarpańska-Stejnborn, Anna

    2010-12-01

    To determine the association between smoking status and leisure time physical activity (LTPA), alcohol consumption, and socioeconomic status (SES) among Polish adults. 466 randomly selected men and women (aged 18-66 years) responded to an anonymous questionnaire regarding smoking, alcohol consumption, LTPA, and SES. Multiple logistic regression was used to examine the association of smoking status with six socioeconomic measures, level of LTPA, and frequency and type of alcohol consumed. Smokers were defined as individuals smoking occasionally or daily. The odds of being smoker were 9 times (men) and 27 times (women) higher among respondents who drink alcohol several times/ week or everyday in comparison to non-drinkers (p times higher compared to those with the high educational attainment (p = 0.007). Among women we observed that students were the most frequent smokers. Female students were almost three times more likely to smoke than non-professional women, and two times more likely than physical workers (p = 0.018). The findings of this study indicated that among randomly selected Polish man and women aged 18-66 smoking and alcohol consumption tended to cluster. These results imply that intervention strategies need to target multiple risk factors simultaneously. The highest risk of smoking was observed among low educated men, female students, and both men and women drinking alcohol several times a week or every day. Information on subgroups with the high risk of smoking will help in planning future preventive strategies.

  13. A scan for positively selected genes in the genomes of humans and chimpanzees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rasmus Nielsen

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available Since the divergence of humans and chimpanzees about 5 million years ago, these species have undergone a remarkable evolution with drastic divergence in anatomy and cognitive abilities. At the molecular level, despite the small overall magnitude of DNA sequence divergence, we might expect such evolutionary changes to leave a noticeable signature throughout the genome. We here compare 13,731 annotated genes from humans to their chimpanzee orthologs to identify genes that show evidence of positive selection. Many of the genes that present a signature of positive selection tend to be involved in sensory perception or immune defenses. However, the group of genes that show the strongest evidence for positive selection also includes a surprising number of genes involved in tumor suppression and apoptosis, and of genes involved in spermatogenesis. We hypothesize that positive selection in some of these genes may be driven by genomic conflict due to apoptosis during spermatogenesis. Genes with maximal expression in the brain show little or no evidence for positive selection, while genes with maximal expression in the testis tend to be enriched with positively selected genes. Genes on the X chromosome also tend to show an elevated tendency for positive selection. We also present polymorphism data from 20 Caucasian Americans and 19 African Americans for the 50 annotated genes showing the strongest evidence for positive selection. The polymorphism analysis further supports the presence of positive selection in these genes by showing an excess of high-frequency derived nonsynonymous mutations.

  14. Fall prevention in the young old using an exoskeleton human body posturizer: a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verrusio, W; Gianturco, V; Cacciafesta, M; Marigliano, V; Troisi, G; Ripani, M

    2017-04-01

    Fall risk in elderly has been related with physical decline, low quality of life and reduced survival. To evaluate the impact of exoskeleton human body posturizer (HBP) on the fall risk in the elderly. 150 subjects (mean age 64.85; 79 M/71 F) with mild fall risk were randomized into two groups: 75 for group treated with human body posturizer (HBP group) and 75 for physical training without HBP group (exercise group). The effects of interventions were assessed by differences in tests related to balance and falls. Medically eligible patients were screened with Tinetti balance and Gait evaluation scale, short physical performance battery and numeric pain rating scale to determine fall risk in elderly people. In the HBP group there was a significant improvement in short physical performance battery, Tinetti scale and Pain Numeric rating scale with a significant reduction in fall risk (p fall risk and improving quality of life by reducing pain. The use of exoskeleton human body posturizer seems to be a new significant device for prevention of fall in elderly patients. Further research should be carried out to obtain more evidence on effects of robotic technology for fall prevention in the elderly.

  15. Tolerance of low-frequency ultrasound sonophoresis: a double-blind randomized study on humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maruani, Annabel; Vierron, Emilie; Machet, Laurent; Giraudeau, Bruno; Halimi, Jean-Michel; Boucaud, Alain

    2012-05-01

    Sonophoresis [low-frequency ultrasound (US)] has been used in animals and in vitro to investigate enhanced percutaneous absorption of drugs. No study focused on its clinical human tolerance has been published as yet. We aimed to assess the bioeffects of low-frequency US in vivo on human skin in a double-blind randomized-controlled study. We applied pulse-mode US at 36 kHz for 5 min in a step procedure of increasing dosage, from 1.57 to 3.50 W/cm(2), and placebo. The primary outcome was toxic effects of the procedure, defined as a pain score >40 on a 0-100 mm visual analogue scale or necrosis. Erythema (scored from 0 to 3 in severity) was also evaluated. The secondary outcomes were measurements of skin thickness by high-resolution skin imaging, of skin capacitance and temperature. We included 34 healthy volunteers. We found no pain score >38 and no skin necrosis with either US or placebo. Erythema was systematically observed immediately after US application, but after 1 day, we observed three cases in the knee group. The most frequent adverse effect was tinnitus. We observed no marked increase in temperature or cutaneous thickness after US or placebo. Cutaneous capacitance increased immediately after both applications. Such data demonstrating good tolerance of sonophoresis can be useful before the initiation of a clinical trial of the therapeutic use of low-frequency sonophoresis in humans. © 2011 John Wiley & Sons A/S.

  16. Genome-wide association data classification and SNPs selection using two-stage quality-based Random Forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Thanh-Tung; Huang, Joshua; Wu, Qingyao; Nguyen, Thuy; Li, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) selection and identification are the most important tasks in Genome-wide association data analysis. The problem is difficult because genome-wide association data is very high dimensional and a large portion of SNPs in the data is irrelevant to the disease. Advanced machine learning methods have been successfully used in Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) for identification of genetic variants that have relatively big effects in some common, complex diseases. Among them, the most successful one is Random Forests (RF). Despite of performing well in terms of prediction accuracy in some data sets with moderate size, RF still suffers from working in GWAS for selecting informative SNPs and building accurate prediction models. In this paper, we propose to use a new two-stage quality-based sampling method in random forests, named ts-RF, for SNP subspace selection for GWAS. The method first applies p-value assessment to find a cut-off point that separates informative and irrelevant SNPs in two groups. The informative SNPs group is further divided into two sub-groups: highly informative and weak informative SNPs. When sampling the SNP subspace for building trees for the forest, only those SNPs from the two sub-groups are taken into account. The feature subspaces always contain highly informative SNPs when used to split a node at a tree. This approach enables one to generate more accurate trees with a lower prediction error, meanwhile possibly avoiding overfitting. It allows one to detect interactions of multiple SNPs with the diseases, and to reduce the dimensionality and the amount of Genome-wide association data needed for learning the RF model. Extensive experiments on two genome-wide SNP data sets (Parkinson case-control data comprised of 408,803 SNPs and Alzheimer case-control data comprised of 380,157 SNPs) and 10 gene data sets have demonstrated that the proposed model significantly reduced prediction errors and outperformed

  17. DEVELOPMENT OF A MATRIX AND ALGORITHM SELECTION OF RANDOM SITUATIONS FOR TRAINING SIMULATORS (in Russian

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victor NORDIN

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Expert systems can be defined as computer programs, whose main task is to simulate a human expert, usually in a narrow field of expertise. Possible applications of modern information technology are very extensive, ranging from medicine, geology and technology to applications in the field of economic and financial decision support. The purpose of this paper is to present the practical application of an expert system that supports the process of managing the production of yachts and has a high suitability for use in this application. Using the expert system described in the paper reduces the time during the design and production preparation process.

  18. Cyclooxygenase-2 expression in the normal human eye and its expression pattern in selected eye tumours

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Jinmei; Wu, Yazhen; Heegaard, Steffen

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is an enzyme involved in neoplastic processes. The purpose of the present study is to investigate COX-2 expression in the normal human eye and the expression pattern in selected eye tumours involving COX-2 expressing cells. Methods: Immunohistochemical staining...... using antibodies against COX-2 was performed on paraffin sections of normal human eyes and selected eye tumours arising from cells expressing COX-2. Results: Cyclooxygenase-2 expression was found in various structures of the normal eye. Abundant expression was seen in the cornea, iris, ciliary body...... and retina. The COX-2 expression was less in tumours deriving from the ciliary epithelium and also in retinoblastoma. Conclusion: Cyclooxygenase-2 is constitutively expressed in normal human eyes. The expression of COX-2 is much lower in selected eye tumours involving COX-2 expressing cells....

  19. Natural selection affects multiple aspects of genetic variation at putatively peutral sites across the human genome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lohmueller, Kirk E; Albrechtsen, Anders; Li, Yingrui

    2011-01-01

    A major question in evolutionary biology is how natural selection has shaped patterns of genetic variation across the human genome. Previous work has documented a reduction in genetic diversity in regions of the genome with low recombination rates. However, it is unclear whether other summaries...... these questions by analyzing three different genome-wide resequencing datasets from European individuals. We document several significant correlations between different genomic features. In particular, we find that average minor allele frequency and diversity are reduced in regions of low recombination...... and that human diversity, human-chimp divergence, and average minor allele frequency are reduced near genes. Population genetic simulations show that either positive natural selection acting on favorable mutations or negative natural selection acting against deleterious mutations can explain these correlations...

  20. Non-random distribution of instability-associated chromosomal rearrangement breakpoints in human lymphoblastoid cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moore, Stephen R.; Papworth, David; Grosovsky, Andrew J.

    2006-01-01

    Genomic instability is observed in tumors and in a large fraction of the progeny surviving irradiation. One of the best-characterized phenotypic manifestations of genomic instability is delayed chromosome aberrations. Our working hypothesis for the current study was that if genomic instability is in part attributable to cis mechanisms, we should observe a non-random distribution of chromosomes or sites involved in instability-associated rearrangements, regardless of radiation quality, dose, or trans factor expression. We report here the karyotypic examination of 296 instability-associated chromosomal rearrangement breaksites (IACRB) from 118 unstable TK6 human B lymphoblast, and isogenic derivative, clones. When we tested whether IACRB were distributed across the chromosomes based on target size, a significant non-random distribution was evident (p < 0.00001), and three IACRB hotspots (chromosomes 11, 12, and 22) and one IACRB coldspot (chromosome 2) were identified. Statistical analysis at the chromosomal band-level identified four IACRB hotspots accounting for 20% of all instability-associated breaks, two of which account for over 14% of all IACRB. Further, analysis of independent clones provided evidence within 14 individual clones of IACRB clustering at the chromosomal band level, suggesting a predisposition for further breaks after an initial break at some chromosomal bands. All of these events, independently, or when taken together, were highly unlikely to have occurred by chance (p < 0.000001). These IACRB band-level cluster hotspots were observed independent of radiation quality, dose, or cellular p53 status. The non-random distribution of instability-associated chromosomal rearrangements described here significantly differs from the distribution that was observed in a first-division post-irradiation metaphase analysis (p = 0.0004). Taken together, these results suggest that genomic instability may be in part driven by chromosomal cis mechanisms

  1. Capturing the Flatness of a peer-to-peer lending network through random and selected perturbations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karampourniotis, Panagiotis D.; Singh, Pramesh; Uparna, Jayaram; Horvat, Emoke-Agnes; Szymanski, Boleslaw K.; Korniss, Gyorgy; Bakdash, Jonathan Z.; Uzzi, Brian

    Null models are established tools that have been used in network analysis to uncover various structural patterns. They quantify the deviance of an observed network measure to that given by the null model. We construct a null model for weighted, directed networks to identify biased links (carrying significantly different weights than expected according to the null model) and thus quantify the flatness of the system. Using this model, we study the flatness of Kiva, a large international crownfinancing network of borrowers and lenders, aggregated to the country level. The dataset spans the years from 2006 to 2013. Our longitudinal analysis shows that flatness of the system is reducing over time, meaning the proportion of biased inter-country links is growing. We extend our analysis by testing the robustness of the flatness of the network in perturbations on the links' weights or the nodes themselves. Examples of such perturbations are event shocks (e.g. erecting walls) or regulatory shocks (e.g. Brexit). We find that flatness is unaffected by random shocks, but changes after shocks target links with a large weight or bias. The methods we use to capture the flatness are based on analytics, simulations, and numerical computations using Shannon's maximum entropy. Supported by ARL NS-CTA.

  2. Participant-selected music and physical activity in older adults following cardiac rehabilitation: a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Imogen N; Baker, Felicity A; Peiris, Casey L; Shoebridge, Georgie; Taylor, Nicholas F

    2017-03-01

    To evaluate effects of participant-selected music on older adults' achievement of activity levels recommended in the physical activity guidelines following cardiac rehabilitation. A parallel group randomized controlled trial with measurements at Weeks 0, 6 and 26. A multisite outpatient rehabilitation programme of a publicly funded metropolitan health service. Adults aged 60 years and older who had completed a cardiac rehabilitation programme. Experimental participants selected music to support walking with guidance from a music therapist. Control participants received usual care only. The primary outcome was the proportion of participants achieving activity levels recommended in physical activity guidelines. Secondary outcomes compared amounts of physical activity, exercise capacity, cardiac risk factors, and exercise self-efficacy. A total of 56 participants, mean age 68.2 years (SD = 6.5), were randomized to the experimental ( n = 28) and control groups ( n = 28). There were no differences between groups in proportions of participants achieving activity recommended in physical activity guidelines at Week 6 or 26. Secondary outcomes demonstrated between-group differences in male waist circumference at both measurements (Week 6 difference -2.0 cm, 95% CI -4.0 to 0; Week 26 difference -2.8 cm, 95% CI -5.4 to -0.1), and observed effect sizes favoured the experimental group for amounts of physical activity (d = 0.30), exercise capacity (d = 0.48), and blood pressure (d = -0.32). Participant-selected music did not increase the proportion of participants achieving recommended amounts of physical activity, but may have contributed to exercise-related benefits.

  3. Prophylactic effect of artemether on human schistosomiasis mansoni among Egyptian children: A randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmorshedy, Hala; Tanner, Marcel; Bergquist, Robert N; Sharaf, Soraya; Barakat, Rashida

    2016-06-01

    A double-blind, randomized controlled trial was conducted in an endemic focus for Schistosoma mansoni in Kafr El-Sheikh Governorate, Northern Nile Delta, Egypt, to evaluate the prophylactic effect of artemether (ART) given in conjunction with praziquantel (PZQ). The study encompassed 913 primary school children randomly assigned to two treatment groups PZQ/ART and PZQ/ART-placebo. At baseline, both groups received 40 mg/kg body weight of PZQ twice four weeks apart, after which one group received 6 mg/kg body weight of ART every 3 weeks in 5 cycles during the transmission season and the other group received ART-placebo. At the end of the study, prevalence of infection among the PZQ/ART was approximately half that of the PZQ/ART-placebo group, i.e. 6.7% versus 11.6%, and incidence of new infections for the PZQ/ART was 2.7% versus 6.5% for the PZQ/ART-placebo. In conclusion, PZQ/ART combined therapy might be considered as an adjunct measure against human schistosomiasis, by specifically reducing transmission and therefore contribute to disease elimination. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. A human immunodeficiency virus risk reduction intervention for incarcerated youth: a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldberg, Eudice; Millson, Peggy; Rivers, Stephen; Manning, Stephanie Jeanneret; Leslie, Karen; Read, Stanley; Shipley, Caitlin; Victor, J Charles

    2009-02-01

    To evaluate, by gender, the impact of a structured, comprehensive risk reduction intervention with and without boosters on human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) knowledge, attitudes and behaviors in incarcerated youth; and to determine predictors of increasing HIV knowledge and reducing high-risk attitudes and behaviors. This randomized controlled trial involved participants completing structured interviews at 1, 3, and 6 months. Repeated measures analysis of variance was used to analyze changes over time. The study was conducted in secure custody facilities and in the community. The study sample comprising 391 incarcerated youth, 102 female and 289 male aged 12-18, formed the voluntary sample. Participants were randomly assigned to one of three conditions: education intervention; education intervention with booster; or no systematic intervention. The outcome and predictor measures included the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, Youth Self Report, Drug Use Inventory, and HIV Knowledge, Attitudes and Behavior Scale. The 6-month retention rate was 59.6%. At 6 months, males in the education and booster groups sustained increases in knowledge scores (p variations by gender underline the importance of gender issues in prevention interventions. Predictors of success were identified to inform future HIV education interventions.

  5. Natural selection on protein-coding genes in the human genome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bustamente, Carlos D.; Fledel-Alon, Adi; Williamson, Scott

    2005-01-01

    , showing an excess of deleterious variation within local populations 9, 10 . Here we contrast patterns of coding sequence polymorphism identified by direct sequencing of 39 humans for over 11,000 genes to divergence between humans and chimpanzees, and find strong evidence that natural selection has shaped......Comparisons of DNA polymorphism within species to divergence between species enables the discovery of molecular adaptation in evolutionarily constrained genes as well as the differentiation of weak from strong purifying selection 1, 2, 3, 4 . The extent to which weak negative and positive darwinian...... selection have driven the molecular evolution of different species varies greatly 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 , with some species, such as Drosophila melanogaster, showing strong evidence of pervasive positive selection 6, 7, 8, 9 , and others, such as the selfing weed Arabidopsis thaliana...

  6. Can the hair follicle become a model for studying selected aspects of human ocular immune privilege?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kinori, Michael; Kloepper, Jennifer E; Paus, Ralf

    2011-06-23

    Immune privilege (IP) is important in maintaining ocular health. Understanding the mechanism underlying this dynamic state would assist in treating inflammatory eye diseases. Despite substantial progress in defining eye IP mechanisms, because of the scarcity of human ocular tissue for research purposes, most of what we know about ocular IP is based on rodent models (of unclear relevance to human eye immunology) and on cultured human eye-derived cells that cannot faithfully mirror the complex cell-tissue interactions that underlie normal human ocular IP in situ. Therefore, accessible, instructive, and clinically relevant human in vitro models are needed for exploring the general principles of why and how IP collapses under clinically relevant experimental conditions and how it can be protected or even restored therapeutically. Among the few human IP sites, the easily accessible and abundantly available hair follicle (HF) may offer one such surrogate model. There are excellent human HF organ culture systems for the study of HF IP in situ that instructively complement in vivo autoimmunity research in the human system. In this article, we delineate that the human eye and HF, despite their obvious differences, share key molecular and cellular mechanisms for maintaining IP. We argue that, therefore, human scalp HFs can provide an unconventional, but highly instructive, accessible, easily manipulated, and clinically relevant preclinical model for selected aspects of ocular IP. This essay is an attempt to encourage professional eye researchers to turn their attention, with appropriate caveats, to this candidate surrogate model for ocular IP in the human system.

  7. A Scan for Positively Selected Genes in the Genomes of Humans and Chimpanzees

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Rasmus; Bustamente, Carlos; Clark, Andrew G.

    2005-01-01

    Since the divergence of humans and chimpanzees about 5 million years ago, these species have undergone a remarkable evolution with drastic divergence in anatomy and cognitive abilities. At the molecular level, despite the small overall magnitude of DNA sequence divergence, we might expect...... such evolutionary changes to leave a noticeable signature throughout the genome. We here compare 13,731 annotated genes from humans to their chimpanzee orthologs to identify genes that show evidence of positive selection. Many of the genes that present a signature of positive selection tend to be involved...

  8. Quantitative Magnetization Transfer Imaging in Human Brain at 3 T via Selective Inversion Recovery

    OpenAIRE

    Dortch, Richard D.; Li, Ke; Gochberg, Daniel F.; Welch, E. Brian; Dula, Adrienne N.; Tamhane, Ashish A.; Gore, John C.; Smith, Seth A.

    2011-01-01

    Quantitative magnetization transfer imaging yields indices describing the interactions between free water protons and immobile, macromolecular protons—including the macromolecular to free pool size ratio (PSR) and the rate of magnetization transfer between pools kmf. This study describes the first implementation of the selective inversion recovery quantitative magnetization transfer method on a clinical 3.0-T scanner in human brain in vivo. Selective inversion recovery data were acquired at 1...

  9. A Novel Mechanism of Sugar Selection Utilized by a Human X-family DNA Polymerase†

    OpenAIRE

    Brown, Jessica A.; Fiala, Kevin A.; Fowler, Jason D.; Sherrer, Shanen M.; Newmister, Sean A.; Dyum, Wade W.; Suo, Zucai

    2009-01-01

    During DNA synthesis, most DNA polymerases and reverse transcriptases select against ribonucleotides via a steric clash between the ribose 2′-hydroxyl group and the bulky side chain of an active site residue. Here, we demonstrated that human DNA polymerase λ used a novel sugar selection mechanism to discriminate against ribonucleotides, whereby the ribose 2′-hydroxyl group was excluded mostly by a backbone segment and slightly by the side chain of Y505. Such a steric clash was further demonst...

  10. A complex selection signature at the human AVPR1B gene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cagliani Rachele

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The vasopressin receptor type 1b (AVPR1B is mainly expressed by pituitary corticotropes and it mediates the stimulatory effects of AVP on ACTH release; common AVPR1B haplotypes have been involved in mood and anxiety disorders in humans, while rodents lacking a functional receptor gene display behavioral defects and altered stress responses. Results Here we have analyzed the two exons of the gene and the data we present suggest that AVPR1B has been subjected to natural selection in humans. In particular, analysis of exon 2 strongly suggests the action of balancing selection in African populations and Europeans: the region displays high nucleotide diversity, an excess of intermediate-frequency alleles, a higher level of within-species diversity compared to interspecific divergence and a genealogy with common haplotypes separated by deep branches. This relatively unambiguous situation coexists with unusual features across exon 1, raising the possibility that a nonsynonymous variant (Gly191Arg in this region has been subjected to directional selection. Conclusion Although the underlying selective pressure(s remains to be identified, we consider this to be among the first documented examples of a gene involved in mood disorders and subjected to natural selection in humans; this observation might add support to the long-debated idea that depression/low mood might have played an adaptive role during human evolution.

  11. A complex selection signature at the human AVPR1B gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cagliani, Rachele; Fumagalli, Matteo; Pozzoli, Uberto; Riva, Stefania; Cereda, Matteo; Comi, Giacomo P; Pattini, Linda; Bresolin, Nereo; Sironi, Manuela

    2009-06-01

    The vasopressin receptor type 1b (AVPR1B) is mainly expressed by pituitary corticotropes and it mediates the stimulatory effects of AVP on ACTH release; common AVPR1B haplotypes have been involved in mood and anxiety disorders in humans, while rodents lacking a functional receptor gene display behavioral defects and altered stress responses. Here we have analyzed the two exons of the gene and the data we present suggest that AVPR1B has been subjected to natural selection in humans. In particular, analysis of exon 2 strongly suggests the action of balancing selection in African populations and Europeans: the region displays high nucleotide diversity, an excess of intermediate-frequency alleles, a higher level of within-species diversity compared to interspecific divergence and a genealogy with common haplotypes separated by deep branches. This relatively unambiguous situation coexists with unusual features across exon 1, raising the possibility that a nonsynonymous variant (Gly191Arg) in this region has been subjected to directional selection. Although the underlying selective pressure(s) remains to be identified, we consider this to be among the first documented examples of a gene involved in mood disorders and subjected to natural selection in humans; this observation might add support to the long-debated idea that depression/low mood might have played an adaptive role during human evolution.

  12. Mirnacle: machine learning with SMOTE and random forest for improving selectivity in pre-miRNA ab initio prediction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marques, Yuri Bento; de Paiva Oliveira, Alcione; Ribeiro Vasconcelos, Ana Tereza; Cerqueira, Fabio Ribeiro

    2016-12-15

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are key gene expression regulators in plants and animals. Therefore, miRNAs are involved in several biological processes, making the study of these molecules one of the most relevant topics of molecular biology nowadays. However, characterizing miRNAs in vivo is still a complex task. As a consequence, in silico methods have been developed to predict miRNA loci. A common ab initio strategy to find miRNAs in genomic data is to search for sequences that can fold into the typical hairpin structure of miRNA precursors (pre-miRNAs). The current ab initio approaches, however, have selectivity issues, i.e., a high number of false positives is reported, which can lead to laborious and costly attempts to provide biological validation. This study presents an extension of the ab initio method miRNAFold, with the aim of improving selectivity through machine learning techniques, namely, random forest combined with the SMOTE procedure that copes with imbalance datasets. By comparing our method, termed Mirnacle, with other important approaches in the literature, we demonstrate that Mirnacle substantially improves selectivity without compromising sensitivity. For the three datasets used in our experiments, our method achieved at least 97% of sensitivity and could deliver a two-fold, 20-fold, and 6-fold increase in selectivity, respectively, compared with the best results of current computational tools. The extension of miRNAFold by the introduction of machine learning techniques, significantly increases selectivity in pre-miRNA ab initio prediction, which optimally contributes to advanced studies on miRNAs, as the need of biological validations is diminished. Hopefully, new research, such as studies of severe diseases caused by miRNA malfunction, will benefit from the proposed computational tool.

  13. Reduced plasma aldosterone concentrations in randomly selected patients with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Cronin, C C

    2012-02-03

    Abnormalities of the renin-angiotensin system have been reported in patients with diabetes mellitus and with diabetic complications. In this study, plasma concentrations of prorenin, renin, and aldosterone were measured in a stratified random sample of 110 insulin-dependent (Type 1) diabetic patients attending our outpatient clinic. Fifty-four age- and sex-matched control subjects were also examined. Plasma prorenin concentration was higher in patients without complications than in control subjects when upright (geometric mean (95% confidence intervals (CI): 75.9 (55.0-105.6) vs 45.1 (31.6-64.3) mU I-1, p < 0.05). There was no difference in plasma prorenin concentration between patients without and with microalbuminuria and between patients without and with background retinopathy. Plasma renin concentration, both when supine and upright, was similar in control subjects, in patients without complications, and in patients with varying degrees of diabetic microangiopathy. Plasma aldosterone was suppressed in patients without complications in comparison to control subjects (74 (58-95) vs 167 (140-199) ng I-1, p < 0.001) and was also suppressed in patients with microvascular disease. Plasma potassium was significantly higher in patients than in control subjects (mean +\\/- standard deviation: 4.10 +\\/- 0.36 vs 3.89 +\\/- 0.26 mmol I-1; p < 0.001) and plasma sodium was significantly lower (138 +\\/- 4 vs 140 +\\/- 2 mmol I-1; p < 0.001). We conclude that plasma prorenin is not a useful early marker for diabetic microvascular disease. Despite apparently normal plasma renin concentrations, plasma aldosterone is suppressed in insulin-dependent diabetic patients.

  14. Selection and characterization of a human neutralizing antibody to human fibroblast growth factor-2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tao, Jun; Xiang, Jun-Jian; Li, Dan; Deng, Ning; Wang, Hong; Gong, Yi-Ping

    2010-01-01

    Compelling evidences suggest that fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) plays important roles in tumor growth, angiogenesis and metastasis. Molecules blocking the FGF-2 signaling have been proposed as anticancer agents. Through screening of a human scFv phage display library, we have isolated several human single-chain Fv fragments (scFvs) that bind to human FGF-2. After expression and purification in bacteria, one scFv, named 1A2, binds to FGF-2 with a high affinity and specificity, and completes with FGF-2 binding to its receptor. This 1A2 scFv was then cloned into the pIgG1 vector and expressed in 293T cells. The purified hIgG1-1A2 antibody showed a high binding affinity of 8 x 10 -9 M to rhFGF-2. In a set of vitro assays, it inhibited various biological activities of FGF-2 such as the proliferation, migration and tube formation of human umbilical vein endothelial cells. More importantly, hIgG1-1A2 antibody also efficiently blocked the growth while inducing apoptosis of glioma cells. For the first time, we generated a human anti-FGF-2 antibody with proven in vitro anti-tumor activity. It may therefore present a new therapeutic candidate for the treatment of cancers that are dependent on FGF-2 signaling for growth and survival.

  15. Human Subjects Protection and Technology in Prevention Science: Selected Opportunities and Challenges

    OpenAIRE

    Pisani, Anthony R.; Wyman, Peter A.; Mohr, David C.; Perrino, Tatiana; Gallo, Carlos; Villamar, Juan; Kendziora, Kimberly; Howe, George W.; Sloboda, Zili; Brown, C. Hendricks

    2016-01-01

    Internet-connected devices are changing the way people live, work, and relate to one another. For prevention scientists, technological advances create opportunities to promote the welfare of human subjects and society. The challenge is to obtain the benefits while minimizing risks. In this article, we use the guiding principles for ethical human subjects research and proposed changes to the Common Rule regulations, as a basis for discussing selected opportunities and challenges that new techn...

  16. The impacts of intensity of human use on grizzly bear habitat selection

    OpenAIRE

    Ouren, Douglas S.; Garrott, Robert A.; Watts, Raymond D.; Lukins, William J.

    2003-01-01

    Problem Statement One of the major challenges to grizzly bear preservation in the greater Yellowstone area is the impact on grizzly bear habitat selection by various types and intensities of human activities. The most prevalent of these human activities is the presence and intensity of use of motorized transportation systems. These transportation systems provide increased access into grizzly bear habitat and thus increase the risk of mortality and dilute the effectiveness of their habitat (Br...

  17. Factor Of Vendor Selection And Employees’ Morale Towards Human Resource Outsourcing Decision In Organization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiean Tan Kok

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study is to investigate factor of vendor selection and employees’ morale towards human resource outsourcing decision in organization. Study was conducted in Melaka within private organizations. Questionnaire was distributed and only 60 respondents were collected back. Data analysis was perform using SPSS version 21. Findings shows that employee’s morale show high significant relationship (r=0.761, p <0.05 with human resource outsourcing decision. Limitation and conclusion were discussed in this study.

  18. A Permutation Importance-Based Feature Selection Method for Short-Term Electricity Load Forecasting Using Random Forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nantian Huang

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The prediction accuracy of short-term load forecast (STLF depends on prediction model choice and feature selection result. In this paper, a novel random forest (RF-based feature selection method for STLF is proposed. First, 243 related features were extracted from historical load data and the time information of prediction points to form the original feature set. Subsequently, the original feature set was used to train an RF as the original model. After the training process, the prediction error of the original model on the test set was recorded and the permutation importance (PI value of each feature was obtained. Then, an improved sequential backward search method was used to select the optimal forecasting feature subset based on the PI value of each feature. Finally, the optimal forecasting feature subset was used to train a new RF model as the final prediction model. Experiments showed that the prediction accuracy of RF trained by the optimal forecasting feature subset was higher than that of the original model and comparative models based on support vector regression and artificial neural network.

  19. Nitrates and bone turnover (NABT) - trial to select the best nitrate preparation: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bucur, Roxana C; Reid, Lauren S; Hamilton, Celeste J; Cummings, Steven R; Jamal, Sophie A

    2013-09-08

    comparisons with the best' approach for data analyses, as this strategy allows practical considerations of ease of use and tolerability to guide selection of the preparation for future studies. Data from this protocol will be used to develop a randomized, controlled trial of nitrates to prevent osteoporotic fractures. ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01387672. Controlled-Trials.com: ISRCTN08860742.

  20. Direct Measurements of Human Colon Crypt Stem Cell Niche Genetic Fidelity: The Role of Chance in Non-Darwinian Mutation Selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haeyoun eKang

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Perfect human stem cell genetic fidelity would prevent aging and cancer. However, perfection would be difficult to achieve, and aging is universal and cancers common. A hypothesis is that because mutations are inevitable over a human lifetime, downstream mechanisms have evolved to manage the deleterious effects of beneficial and lethal mutations. In the colon, a crypt stem cell architecture reduces the number of mitotic cells at risk for mutation accumulation, and multiple niche stem cells ensure that a lethal mutation within any single stem cell does not lead to crypt death. In addition, the architecture of the colon crypt stem cell niche may harness probability or chance to randomly discard many beneficial mutations that might lead to cancer. An analysis of somatic chromosome copy number alterations (CNAs reveals a lack of perfect fidelity in individual normal human crypts, with age-related increases and higher frequencies in ulcerative colitis, a proliferative, inflammatory disease. The age-related increase in somatic CNAs appears consistent with relatively normal replication error and cell division rates. Surprisingly, and similar to point mutations in cancer genomes, the types of crypt mutations were more consistent with random fixation rather than selection. In theory, a simple non-Darwinian way to nullify selection is to reduce the size of the reproducing population. Fates are more determined by chance rather than selection in very small populations, and therefore selection may be minimized within small crypt niches. The desired effect is that many beneficial mutations that might lead to cancer are randomly lost by drift rather than fixed by selection. The subdivision of the colon into multiple very small stem cell niches may trade Darwinian evolution for non-Darwinian somatic cell evolution, capitulating to aging but reducing cancer risks.

  1. A randomized controlled trial investigating the use of a predictive nomogram for the selection of the FSH starting dose in IVF/ICSI cycles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allegra, Adolfo; Marino, Angelo; Volpes, Aldo; Coffaro, Francesco; Scaglione, Piero; Gullo, Salvatore; La Marca, Antonio

    2017-04-01

    The number of oocytes retrieved is a relevant intermediate outcome in women undergoing IVF/intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). This trial compared the efficiency of the selection of the FSH starting dose according to a nomogram based on multiple biomarkers (age, day 3 FSH, anti-Müllerian hormone) versus an age-based strategy. The primary outcome measure was the proportion of women with an optimal number of retrieved oocytes defined as 8-14. At their first IVF/ICSI cycle, 191 patients underwent a long gonadotrophin-releasing hormone agonist protocol and were randomized to receive a starting dose of recombinant (human) FSH, based on their age (150 IU if ≤35 years, 225 IU if >35 years) or based on the nomogram. Optimal response was observed in 58/92 patients (63%) in the nomogram group and in 42/99 (42%) in the control group (+21%, 95% CI = 0.07 to 0.35, P = 0.0037). No significant differences were found in the clinical pregnancy rate or the number of embryos cryopreserved per patient. The study showed that the FSH starting dose selected according to ovarian reserve is associated with an increase in the proportion of patients with an optimal response: large trials are recommended to investigate any possible effect on the live-birth rate. Copyright © 2017 Reproductive Healthcare Ltd. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Novel β-lactamase-random peptide fusion libraries for phage display selection of cancer cell-targeting agents suitable for enzyme prodrug therapy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shukla, Girja S.; Krag, David N.

    2010-01-01

    Novel phage-displayed random linear dodecapeptide (X12) and cysteine-constrained decapeptide (CX10C) libraries constructed in fusion to the amino-terminus of P99 β-lactamase molecules were used for identifying β-lactamase-linked cancer cell-specific ligands. The size and quality of both libraries were comparable to the standards of other reported phage display systems. Using the single-round panning method based on phage DNA recovery, we identified severalβ-lactamase fusion peptides that specifically bind to live human breast cancer MDA-MB-361 cells. The β-lactamase fusion to the peptides helped in conducting the enzyme activity-based clone normalization and cell-binding screening in a very time- and cost-efficient manner. The methods were suitable for 96-well readout as well as microscopic imaging. The success of the biopanning was indicated by the presence of ~40% cancer cell-specific clones among recovered phages. One of the binding clones appeared multiple times. The cancer cell-binding fusion peptides also shared several significant motifs. This opens a new way of preparing and selecting phage display libraries. The cancer cell-specific β-lactamase-linked affinity reagents selected from these libraries can be used for any application that requires a reporter for tracking the ligand molecules. Furthermore, these affinity reagents have also a potential for their direct use in the targeted enzyme prodrug therapy of cancer. PMID:19751096

  3. Non-Random Inversion Landscapes in Prokaryotic Genomes Are Shaped by Heterogeneous Selection Pressures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Repar, Jelena; Warnecke, Tobias

    2017-08-01

    Inversions are a major contributor to structural genome evolution in prokaryotes. Here, using a novel alignment-based method, we systematically compare 1,651 bacterial and 98 archaeal genomes to show that inversion landscapes are frequently biased toward (symmetric) inversions around the origin-terminus axis. However, symmetric inversion bias is not a universal feature of prokaryotic genome evolution but varies considerably across clades. At the extremes, inversion landscapes in Bacillus-Clostridium and Actinobacteria are dominated by symmetric inversions, while there is little or no systematic bias favoring symmetric rearrangements in archaea with a single origin of replication. Within clades, we find strong but clade-specific relationships between symmetric inversion bias and different features of adaptive genome architecture, including the distance of essential genes to the origin of replication and the preferential localization of genes on the leading strand. We suggest that heterogeneous selection pressures have converged to produce similar patterns of structural genome evolution across prokaryotes. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  4. Reduced Osteogenesis of Human Osteogenic Precursors' Cells Cultured in the Random Positioning Machine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gershovich, J. G.; Buravkova, L. B.

    2008-06-01

    Recent studies have shown that simulated microgravity (SMG) results in altered proliferation and differentiation not only osteoblasts but also affects on osteogenic capacity of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) from various sources. For present study we used system that simulates effects of microgravity produced by the Random Positioning Machine (RPM). Cultured MCSs from human bone marrow and human osteoblasts (OBs) were exposed to SMG at RPM for 10-40 days. Induced osteogenesis of these progenitor cells was compared with the appropriate static (1g) and dynamic (horizontal shaker) controls. Clinorotated OBs and MSCs showed proliferation rate lower than static and dynamic control groups of cells in the early terms of SMG. Significant reduction of ALP activity was detected after 10 days of clinorotation of MSCs. There was no such dramatic difference in ALP activity of MSCs derived cells between SMG and control groups after 20 days of clinorotation but the expression of ALP was still reduced. However, virtually no matrix mineralization was found in OBs cultured under SMG conditions in the presence of differentiation stimuli. The similar effect was observed when we assayed matrix calcification of MSCs derived cultures. Thus, our results confirm low gravity mediated reduction of osteogenesis of different osteogenic precursors' cells and can clarify the mechanisms of bone loss during spaceflight.

  5. Simultaneous inference of selection and population growth from patterns of variation in the human genome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Williamson, Scott H.; Hernandez, Ryan; Fledel-Alon, Adi

    2005-01-01

    Natural selection and demographic forces can have similar effects on patterns of DNA polymorphism. Therefore, to infer selection from samples of DNA sequences, one must simultaneously account for demographic effects. Here we take a model-based approach to this problem by developing predictions fo......-specific methods, and (iii) strong evidence for very recent population growth....... for patterns of polymorphism in the presence of both population size change and natural selection. If data are available from different functional classes of variation, and a priori information suggests that mutations in one of those classes are selectively neutral, then the putatively neutral class can...... this method to a large polymorphism data set from 301 human genes and find (i) widespread negative selection acting on standing nonsynonymous variation, (ii) that the fitness effects of nonsynonymous mutations are well predicted by several measures of amino acid exchangeability, especially site...

  6. Effects of Divergent Selection for Fear of Humans on Behaviour in Red Junglefowl.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatrix Agnvall

    Full Text Available Domestication has caused a range of similar phenotypic changes across taxa, relating to physiology, morphology and behaviour. It has been suggested that this recurring domesticated phenotype may be a result of correlated responses to a central trait, namely increased tameness. We selected Red Junglefowl, the ancestors of domesticated chickens, during five generations for reduced fear of humans. This caused a marked and significant response in tameness, and previous studies have found correlated effects on growth, metabolism, reproduction, and some behaviour not directly selected for. Here, we report the results from a series of behavioural tests carried out on the initial parental generation (P0 and the fifth selected generation (S5, focusing on behaviour not functionally related to tameness, in order to study any correlated effects. Birds were tested for fear of humans, social reinstatement tendency, open field behaviour at two different ages, foraging/exploration, response to a simulated aerial predator attack and tonic immobility. In S5, there were no effects of selection on foraging/exploration or tonic immobility, while in the social reinstatement and open field tests there were significant interactions between selection and sex. In the aerial predator test, there were significant main effects of selection, indicating that fear of humans may represent a general wariness towards predators. In conclusion, we found only small correlated effects on behaviours not related to the tameness trait selected for, in spite of them showing high genetic correlations to fear of humans in a previous study on the same population. This suggests that species-specific behaviour is generally resilient to changes during domestication.

  7. Effects of Divergent Selection for Fear of Humans on Behaviour in Red Junglefowl

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agnvall, Beatrix; Jensen, Per

    2016-01-01

    Domestication has caused a range of similar phenotypic changes across taxa, relating to physiology, morphology and behaviour. It has been suggested that this recurring domesticated phenotype may be a result of correlated responses to a central trait, namely increased tameness. We selected Red Junglefowl, the ancestors of domesticated chickens, during five generations for reduced fear of humans. This caused a marked and significant response in tameness, and previous studies have found correlated effects on growth, metabolism, reproduction, and some behaviour not directly selected for. Here, we report the results from a series of behavioural tests carried out on the initial parental generation (P0) and the fifth selected generation (S5), focusing on behaviour not functionally related to tameness, in order to study any correlated effects. Birds were tested for fear of humans, social reinstatement tendency, open field behaviour at two different ages, foraging/exploration, response to a simulated aerial predator attack and tonic immobility. In S5, there were no effects of selection on foraging/exploration or tonic immobility, while in the social reinstatement and open field tests there were significant interactions between selection and sex. In the aerial predator test, there were significant main effects of selection, indicating that fear of humans may represent a general wariness towards predators. In conclusion, we found only small correlated effects on behaviours not related to the tameness trait selected for, in spite of them showing high genetic correlations to fear of humans in a previous study on the same population. This suggests that species-specific behaviour is generally resilient to changes during domestication. PMID:27851792

  8. Genome-scale detection of positive selection in nine primates predicts human-virus evolutionary conflicts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Lee, Robin; Wiel, Laurens; van Dam, Teunis J P; Huynen, Martijn A

    2017-10-13

    Hotspots of rapid genome evolution hold clues about human adaptation. We present a comparative analysis of nine whole-genome sequenced primates to identify high-confidence targets of positive selection. We find strong statistical evidence for positive selection in 331 protein-coding genes (3%), pinpointing 934 adaptively evolving codons (0.014%). Our new procedure is stringent and reveals substantial artefacts (20% of initial predictions) that have inflated previous estimates. The final 331 positively selected genes (PSG) are strongly enriched for innate and adaptive immunity, secreted and cell membrane proteins (e.g. pattern recognition, complement, cytokines, immune receptors, MHC, Siglecs). We also find evidence for positive selection in reproduction and chromosome segregation (e.g. centromere-associated CENPO, CENPT), apolipoproteins, smell/taste receptors and mitochondrial proteins. Focusing on the virus-host interaction, we retrieve most evolutionary conflicts known to influence antiviral activity (e.g. TRIM5, MAVS, SAMHD1, tetherin) and predict 70 novel cases through integration with virus-human interaction data. Protein structure analysis further identifies positive selection in the interaction interfaces between viruses and their cellular receptors (CD4-HIV; CD46-measles, adenoviruses; CD55-picornaviruses). Finally, primate PSG consistently show high sequence variation in human exomes, suggesting ongoing evolution. Our curated dataset of positive selection is a rich source for studying the genetics underlying human (antiviral) phenotypes. Procedures and data are available at https://github.com/robinvanderlee/positive-selection. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  9. A highly selective CCR2 chemokine agonist encoded by human herpesvirus 6

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lüttichau, Hans R; Clark-Lewis, Ian; Jensen, Peter Østrup

    2003-01-01

    The chemokine-like, secreted protein product of the U83 gene from human herpesvirus 6, here named vCCL4, was chemically synthesized to be characterized in a complete library of the 18 known human chemokine receptors expressed individually in stably transfected cell lines. vCCL4 was found to cause...... being equally or more efficacious in causing cell migration than CCL2 and CCL7 and considerably more efficacious than CCL8 and CCL13. It is concluded that human herpesvirus 6 encodes a highly selective and efficacious CCR2 agonist, which will attract CCR2 expressing cells, for example macrophages...

  10. Fast selection of miRNA candidates based on large-scale pre-computed MFE sets of randomized sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warris, Sven; Boymans, Sander; Muiser, Iwe; Noback, Michiel; Krijnen, Wim; Nap, Jan-Peter

    2014-01-13

    Small RNAs are important regulators of genome function, yet their prediction in genomes is still a major computational challenge. Statistical analyses of pre-miRNA sequences indicated that their 2D structure tends to have a minimal free energy (MFE) significantly lower than MFE values of equivalently randomized sequences with the same nucleotide composition, in contrast to other classes of non-coding RNA. The computation of many MFEs is, however, too intensive to allow for genome-wide screenings. Using a local grid infrastructure, MFE distributions of random sequences were pre-calculated on a large scale. These distributions follow a normal distribution and can be used to determine the MFE distribution for any given sequence composition by interpolation. It allows on-the-fly calculation of the normal distribution for any candidate sequence composition. The speedup achieved makes genome-wide screening with this characteristic of a pre-miRNA sequence practical. Although this particular property alone will not be able to distinguish miRNAs from other sequences sufficiently discriminative, the MFE-based P-value should be added to the parameters of choice to be included in the selection of potential miRNA candidates for experimental verification.

  11. Selecting Optimal Random Forest Predictive Models: A Case Study on Predicting the Spatial Distribution of Seabed Hardness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jin; Tran, Maggie; Siwabessy, Justy

    2016-01-01

    Spatially continuous predictions of seabed hardness are important baseline environmental information for sustainable management of Australia’s marine jurisdiction. Seabed hardness is often inferred from multibeam backscatter data with unknown accuracy and can be inferred from underwater video footage at limited locations. In this study, we classified the seabed into four classes based on two new seabed hardness classification schemes (i.e., hard90 and hard70). We developed optimal predictive models to predict seabed hardness using random forest (RF) based on the point data of hardness classes and spatially continuous multibeam data. Five feature selection (FS) methods that are variable importance (VI), averaged variable importance (AVI), knowledge informed AVI (KIAVI), Boruta and regularized RF (RRF) were tested based on predictive accuracy. Effects of highly correlated, important and unimportant predictors on the accuracy of RF predictive models were examined. Finally, spatial predictions generated using the most accurate models were visually examined and analysed. This study confirmed that: 1) hard90 and hard70 are effective seabed hardness classification schemes; 2) seabed hardness of four classes can be predicted with a high degree of accuracy; 3) the typical approach used to pre-select predictive variables by excluding highly correlated variables needs to be re-examined; 4) the identification of the important and unimportant predictors provides useful guidelines for further improving predictive models; 5) FS methods select the most accurate predictive model(s) instead of the most parsimonious ones, and AVI and Boruta are recommended for future studies; and 6) RF is an effective modelling method with high predictive accuracy for multi-level categorical data and can be applied to ‘small p and large n’ problems in environmental sciences. Additionally, automated computational programs for AVI need to be developed to increase its computational efficiency and

  12. Human vs. Computer Diagnosis of Students' Natural Selection Knowledge: Testing the Efficacy of Text Analytic Software

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nehm, Ross H.; Haertig, Hendrik

    2012-01-01

    Our study examines the efficacy of Computer Assisted Scoring (CAS) of open-response text relative to expert human scoring within the complex domain of evolutionary biology. Specifically, we explored whether CAS can diagnose the explanatory elements (or Key Concepts) that comprise undergraduate students' explanatory models of natural selection with…

  13. Bicyclams, selective antagonists of the human chemokine receptor CXCR4, potently inhibit feline immunodeficiency virus replication

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Horzinek, M.C.; Egberink, H.F.; Clercq, E. de; Vliet, A.L.W. van; Balzarini, J.; Bridger, G.J.; Henson, G.; Schols, D.

    1999-01-01

    Bicyclams are low-molecular-weight anti-human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) agents that have been shown to act as potent and selective CXC chemokine receptor 4 (CXCR4) antagonists. Here, we demonstrate that bicyclams are potent inhibitors of feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) replication when

  14. Human Error Probabilites (HEPs) for generic tasks and Performance Shaping Factors (PSFs) selected for railway operations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thommesen, Jacob; Andersen, Henning Boje

    This report describes an HRA (Human Reliability Assessment) of six generic tasks and four Perfor-mance Shaping Factors (PSFs) targeted at railway operations commissioned by Banedanmark. The selection and characterization of generic tasks and PSFs are elaborated by DTU Management in close...

  15. Objective ARX Model Order Selection for Multi-Channel Human Operator Identification

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roggenkämper, N; Pool, D.M.; Drop, F.M.; van Paassen, M.M.; Mulder, M.

    2016-01-01

    In manual control, the human operator primarily responds to visual inputs but may elect to make use of other available feedback paths such as physical motion, adopting a multi-channel control strategy. Hu- man operator identification procedures generally require a priori selection of the model

  16. Measuring selection for genes that promote long life in a historical human population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moorad, Jacob A; Walling, Craig A

    2017-11-01

    The unusually long lifespans of humans and the persistence of post-reproductive lifespans in women represent evolutionary puzzles because natural selection cannot directly favour continued living in post-menopausal women or elderly men. Suggested sources of indirect selection require genetic correlations between fitness and survival or reproduction at younger ages, reproduction in the opposite sex, or late-life contributions to offspring or grandoffspring fitness. Here we apply quantitative genetic analyses to data from a historical human population to explicitly test these evolutionary genetic hypotheses. Total genetic selection increased the male post-50 lifespans by 0.138 years per generation; 94% of this arose from indirect selection acting to favour early-life fitness in both sexes. These results argue strongly against life-history models of ageing that depend on trade-offs between reproduction and late-life survival. No source of indirect selection for female post-50 lifespan was detected, deepening the mystery of why female post-reproductive survival persists. This result is probably due to recent changes in the genetic architecture of female lifespan, and it highlights the need for similar quantitative genetic analyses of human populations at other points along demographic transitions.

  17. Randomized controlled trial of docosahexaenoic acid supplementation in midwestern U.S. human milk donors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valentine, Christina J; Morrow, Georgia; Pennell, Michael; Morrow, Ardythe L; Hodge, Amanda; Haban-Bartz, Annette; Collins, Kristin; Rogers, Lynette K

    2013-02-01

    Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is a long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid important for neonatal neurodevelopment and immune homeostasis. Preterm infants fed donor milk from a Midwestern source receive only 20% of the intrauterine accretion of DHA. We tested the hypothesis that DHA supplementation of donor mothers would provide preterm infants with DHA intake equivalent to fetal accretion. After Institutional Review Board approval and informed consent, human milk donors to the Mother's Milk Bank of Ohio were randomized to receive 1 g of DHA (Martek(®) [now DSM Nutritional Lipids, Columbia, MD]) or placebo soy oil. Dietary intake data were collected and analyzed by a registered dietitian. Fatty acids were measured by gas chromatography/flame ionization detection. Statistical analysis used linear mixed models. Twenty-one mothers were randomly assigned to either the DHA group (n=10) or the placebo group (n=11). Donor age was a median of 31 years in both groups with a mean lactational stage of 19 weeks. Dietary intake of DHA at baseline in both groups was a median of 23 mg/day (range, 0-194 mg), significantly (p<0.0001) less than the minimum recommended intake of 200 mg/day. The DHA content of milk increased in the DHA-supplemented group (p<0.05). The women enrolled in this study had low dietary DHA intake. Supplementation with preformed DHA at 1 g/day resulted in increased DHA concentrations in the donor milk with no adverse outcomes. Infants fed donor milk from supplemented women receive dietary DHA levels that closely mimic normal intrauterine accretion during the third trimester.

  18. Human papillomavirus-based cervical cancer prevention: long-term results of a randomized screening trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denny, Lynette; Kuhn, Louise; Hu, Chih-Chi; Tsai, Wei-Yann; Wright, Thomas C

    2010-10-20

    Screen-and-treat approaches to cervical cancer prevention are an attractive option for low-resource settings, but data on their long-term efficacy are lacking. We evaluated the efficacy of two screen-and-treat approaches through 36 months of follow-up in a randomized trial. A total of 6637 unscreened South African women aged 35-65 years who were tested for the presence of high-risk human papillomavirus (HPV) DNA in cervical samples underwent visual inspection of the cervix using acetic acid staining and HIV serotesting. Of these, 6555 were randomly assigned to three study arms: 1) HPV-and-treat, in which all women with a positive HPV DNA test result underwent cryotherapy; 2) visual inspection-and-treat, in which all women with a positive visual inspection test result underwent cryotherapy; or 3) control, in which further evaluation or treatment was delayed for 6 months. All women underwent colposcopy with biopsy at 6 months. All women who were HPV DNA- or visual inspection-positive at enrollment, and a subset of all other women had extended follow-up to 36 months (n = 3639) with yearly colposcopy. The endpoint-cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grade 2 or worse (CIN2+)-was analyzed using actuarial life-table methods. All statistical tests were two-sided. After 36 months, there was a sustained statistically significant decrease in the cumulative detection of CIN2+ in the HPV-and-treat arm compared with the control arm (1.5% vs 5.6%, difference = 4.1%, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.8% to 5.3%, P cryotherapy.

  19. Human activity recognition based on feature selection in smart home using back-propagation algorithm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Hongqing; He, Lei; Si, Hao; Liu, Peng; Xie, Xiaolei

    2014-09-01

    In this paper, Back-propagation(BP) algorithm has been used to train the feed forward neural network for human activity recognition in smart home environments, and inter-class distance method for feature selection of observed motion sensor events is discussed and tested. And then, the human activity recognition performances of neural network using BP algorithm have been evaluated and compared with other probabilistic algorithms: Naïve Bayes(NB) classifier and Hidden Markov Model(HMM). The results show that different feature datasets yield different activity recognition accuracy. The selection of unsuitable feature datasets increases the computational complexity and degrades the activity recognition accuracy. Furthermore, neural network using BP algorithm has relatively better human activity recognition performances than NB classifier and HMM. Copyright © 2014 ISA. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Selective sweep on human amylase genes postdates the split with Neanderthals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inchley, Charlotte E.; Larbey, Cynthia D. A.; Shwan, Nzar A. A.; Pagani, Luca; Saag, Lauri; Antão, Tiago; Jacobs, Guy; Hudjashov, Georgi; Metspalu, Ene; Mitt, Mario; Eichstaedt, Christina A.; Malyarchuk, Boris; Derenko, Miroslava; Wee, Joseph; Abdullah, Syafiq; Ricaut, François-Xavier; Mormina, Maru; Mägi, Reedik; Villems, Richard; Metspalu, Mait; Jones, Martin K.; Armour, John A. L.; Kivisild, Toomas

    2016-01-01

    Humans have more copies of amylase genes than other primates. It is still poorly understood, however, when the copy number expansion occurred and whether its spread was enhanced by selection. Here we assess amylase copy numbers in a global sample of 480 high coverage genomes and find that regions flanking the amylase locus show notable depression of genetic diversity both in African and non-African populations. Analysis of genetic variation in these regions supports the model of an early selective sweep in the human lineage after the split of humans from Neanderthals which led to the fixation of multiple copies of AMY1 in place of a single copy. We find evidence of multiple secondary losses of copy number with the highest frequency (52%) of a deletion of AMY2A and associated low copy number of AMY1 in Northeast Siberian populations whose diet has been low in starch content. PMID:27853181

  1. Consistent selection towards low activity phenotypes when catchability depends on encounters among human predators and fish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Josep Alós

    Full Text Available Together with life-history and underlying physiology, the behavioural variability among fish is one of the three main trait axes that determines the vulnerability to fishing. However, there are only a few studies that have systematically investigated the strength and direction of selection acting on behavioural traits. Using in situ fish behaviour revealed by telemetry techniques as input, we developed an individual-based model (IBM that simulated the Lagrangian trajectory of prey (fish moving within a confined home range (HR. Fishers exhibiting various prototypical fishing styles targeted these fish in the model. We initially hypothesised that more active and more explorative individuals would be systematically removed under all fished conditions, in turn creating negative selection differentials on low activity phenotypes and maybe on small HR. Our results partly supported these general predictions. Standardised selection differentials were, on average, more negative on HR than on activity. However, in many simulation runs, positive selection pressures on HR were also identified, which resulted from the stochastic properties of the fishes' movement and its interaction with the human predator. In contrast, there was a consistent negative selection on activity under all types of fishing styles. Therefore, in situations where catchability depends on spatial encounters between human predators and fish, we would predict a consistent selection towards low activity phenotypes and have less faith in the direction of the selection on HR size. Our study is the first theoretical investigation on the direction of fishery-induced selection of behaviour using passive fishing gears. The few empirical studies where catchability of fish was measured in relation to passive fishing techniques, such as gill-nets, traps or recreational fishing, support our predictions that fish in highly exploited situations are, on average, characterised by low swimming activity

  2. Effects of selective attention on the electrophysiological representation of concurrent sounds in the human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bidet-Caulet, Aurélie; Fischer, Catherine; Besle, Julien; Aguera, Pierre-Emmanuel; Giard, Marie-Helene; Bertrand, Olivier

    2007-08-29

    In noisy environments, we use auditory selective attention to actively ignore distracting sounds and select relevant information, as during a cocktail party to follow one particular conversation. The present electrophysiological study aims at deciphering the spatiotemporal organization of the effect of selective attention on the representation of concurrent sounds in the human auditory cortex. Sound onset asynchrony was manipulated to induce the segregation of two concurrent auditory streams. Each stream consisted of amplitude modulated tones at different carrier and modulation frequencies. Electrophysiological recordings were performed in epileptic patients with pharmacologically resistant partial epilepsy, implanted with depth electrodes in the temporal cortex. Patients were presented with the stimuli while they either performed an auditory distracting task or actively selected one of the two concurrent streams. Selective attention was found to affect steady-state responses in the primary auditory cortex, and transient and sustained evoked responses in secondary auditory areas. The results provide new insights on the neural mechanisms of auditory selective attention: stream selection during sound rivalry would be facilitated not only by enhancing the neural representation of relevant sounds, but also by reducing the representation of irrelevant information in the auditory cortex. Finally, they suggest a specialization of the left hemisphere in the attentional selection of fine-grained acoustic information.

  3. Performance of Universal Adhesive in Primary Molars After Selective Removal of Carious Tissue: An 18-Month Randomized Clinical Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenzi, Tathiane Larissa; Pires, Carine Weber; Soares, Fabio Zovico Maxnuck; Raggio, Daniela Prócida; Ardenghi, Thiago Machado; de Oliveira Rocha, Rachel

    2017-09-15

    To evaluate the 18-month clinical performance of a universal adhesive, applied under different adhesion strategies, after selective carious tissue removal in primary molars. Forty-four subjects (five to 10 years old) contributed with 90 primary molars presenting moderately deep dentin carious lesions on occlusal or occluso-proximal surfaces, which were randomly assigned following either self-etch or etch-and-rinse protocol of Scotchbond Universal Adhesive (3M ESPE). Resin composite was incrementally inserted for all restorations. Restorations were evaluated at one, six, 12, and 18 months using the modified United States Public Health Service criteria. Survival estimates for restorations' longevity were evaluated using the Kaplan-Meier method. Multivariate Cox regression analysis with shared frailty to assess the factors associated with failures (Padhesion strategy did not influence the restorations' longevity (P=0.06; 72.2 percent and 89.7 percent with etch-and-rinse and self-etch mode, respectively). Self-etch and etch-and-rinse strategies did not influence the clinical behavior of universal adhesive used in primary molars after selective carious tissue removal; although there was a tendency for better outcome of the self-etch strategy.

  4. DNABP: Identification of DNA-Binding Proteins Based on Feature Selection Using a Random Forest and Predicting Binding Residues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Xin; Guo, Jing; Sun, Xiao

    2016-01-01

    DNA-binding proteins are fundamentally important in cellular processes. Several computational-based methods have been developed to improve the prediction of DNA-binding proteins in previous years. However, insufficient work has been done on the prediction of DNA-binding proteins from protein sequence information. In this paper, a novel predictor, DNABP (DNA-binding proteins), was designed to predict DNA-binding proteins using the random forest (RF) classifier with a hybrid feature. The hybrid feature contains two types of novel sequence features, which reflect information about the conservation of physicochemical properties of the amino acids, and the binding propensity of DNA-binding residues and non-binding propensities of non-binding residues. The comparisons with each feature demonstrated that these two novel features contributed most to the improvement in predictive ability. Furthermore, to improve the prediction performance of the DNABP model, feature selection using the minimum redundancy maximum relevance (mRMR) method combined with incremental feature selection (IFS) was carried out during the model construction. The results showed that the DNABP model could achieve 86.90% accuracy, 83.76% sensitivity, 90.03% specificity and a Matthews correlation coefficient of 0.727. High prediction accuracy and performance comparisons with previous research suggested that DNABP could be a useful approach to identify DNA-binding proteins from sequence information. The DNABP web server system is freely available at http://www.cbi.seu.edu.cn/DNABP/.

  5. A PANEL REGRESSION ANALYSIS OF HUMAN CAPITAL RELEVANCE IN SELECTED SCANDINAVIAN AND SE EUROPEAN COUNTRIES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Filip Kokotovic

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The study of human capital relevance to economic growth is becoming increasingly important taking into account its relevance in many of the Sustainable Development Goals proposed by the UN. This paper conducted a panel regression analysis of selected SE European countries and Scandinavian countries using the Granger causality test and pooled panel regression. In order to test the relevance of human capital on economic growth, several human capital proxy variables were identified. Aside from the human capital proxy variables, other explanatory variables were selected using stepwise regression while the dependant variable was GDP. This paper concludes that there are significant structural differences in the economies of the two observed panels. Of the human capital proxy variables observed, for the panel of SE European countries only life expectancy was statistically significant and it had a negative impact on economic growth, while in the panel of Scandinavian countries total public expenditure on education had a statistically significant positive effect on economic growth. Based upon these results and existing studies, this paper concludes that human capital has a far more significant impact on economic growth in more developed economies.

  6. Positive selection on the nonhomologous end-joining factor Cernunnos-XLF in the human lineage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jurka Jerzy

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cernunnos-XLF is a nonhomologous end-joining factor that is mutated in patients with a rare immunodeficiency with microcephaly. Several other microcephaly-associated genes such as ASPM and microcephalin experienced recent adaptive evolution apparently linked to brain size expansion in humans. In this study we investigated whether Cernunnos-XLF experienced similar positive selection during human evolution. Results We obtained or reconstructed full-length coding sequences of chimpanzee, rhesus macaque, canine, and bovine Cernunnos-XLF orthologs from sequence databases and sequence trace archives. Comparison of coding sequences revealed an excess of nonsynonymous substitutions consistent with positive selection on Cernunnos-XLF in the human lineage. The hotspots of adaptive evolution are concentrated around a specific structural domain, whose analogue in the structurally similar XRCC4 protein is involved in binding of another nonhomologous end-joining factor, DNA ligase IV. Conclusion Cernunnos-XLF is a microcephaly-associated locus newly identified to be under adaptive evolution in humans, and possibly played a role in human brain expansion. We speculate that Cernunnos-XLF may have contributed to the increased number of brain cells in humans by efficient double strand break repair, which helps to prevent frequent apoptosis of neuronal progenitors and aids mitotic cell cycle progression. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Chris Ponting and Richard Emes (nominated by Chris Ponting, Kateryna Makova, Gáspár Jékely and Eugene V. Koonin.

  7. Use of an action-selection framework for human-carnivore conflict in the Bangladesh Sundarbans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barlow, Adam C D; Greenwood, Christina J; Ahmad, Ishtiaq U; Smith, James L D

    2010-10-01

    Human-carnivore conflict is manifested in the death of humans, livestock, and carnivores. The resulting negative local attitudes and retribution killings imperil the future of many endangered carnivores. We tailored existing management tools to create a framework to facilitate the selection of actions to alleviate human-carnivore conflict and applied the framework to the human-tiger conflict in the Bangladesh Sundarbans. We identified potential actions that consider previous management efforts, local knowledge, cost-effectiveness, fieldwork experience of authors and project staff, previous research on tiger ecology by the authors, and recommendations from human-carnivore conflict studies in other countries. Our framework includes creation of a profile to improve understanding of the nature of the conflict and its underlying causality. Identified actions include deterrents, education, direct tiger management, and response teams. We ranked actions by their potential to reduce conflict and the monetary cost of their implementation. We ranked tiger-response teams and monitoring problem tigers as the two best actions because both had relatively high impact and cost-effectiveness. We believe this framework could be used under a wide range of human-wildlife conflict situations because it provides a structured approach to selection of mitigating actions. © 2010 Society for Conservation Biology.

  8. Random integration of SV40 in SV40-transformed, immortalized human fibroblasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hara, H; Kaji, H

    1987-02-01

    We have studied the relationship between immortalization of SV40-transformed human embryonic fibroblasts and their SV40 integration sites. From several independently transformed cell pools, we have isolated clones which do not harbor unintegrated SV40 DNA. We have analysed whole-cell DNA from these clones, using the Southern blot method. Our results suggest that no specific integration sites in the cellular genome exist which are a prerequisite for the immortalization process. Although some integration sites were found to be predominant in pre-crisis clones, they could not be detected in the post-crisis clones. This suggests that none of these predominating sites is selected for during the crisis period.

  9. Lactotripeptides Show No Effect on Human Blood Pressure: Results from a double-blind randomized controlled trial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Engberink, M.F.; Schouten, E.G.; Kok, F.J.; Mierlo, van L.A.J.; Brouwer, I.A.; Geleijnse, J.M.

    2008-01-01

    Milk-derived peptides with ACE-inhibiting properties may have antihypertensive effects in humans. We conducted a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial to examine the blood pressure lowering potential of 2 ACE-inhibiting lactotripeptides, ie, Isoleucine-Proline-Proline and

  10. In vitro development of donated frozen-thawed human embryos in a prototype static microfluidic device: a randomized controlled trial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kieslinger, Dorit C.; Hao, Zhenxia; Vergouw, Carlijn G.; Kostelijk, Elisabeth H.; Lambalk, Cornelis B.; le Gac, Severine

    Objective: To compare the development of human embryos in microfluidic devices with culture in standard microdrop dishes, both under static conditions. Design: Prospective randomized controlled trial. Setting: In vitro fertilization laboratory. Patient(s): One hundred eighteen donated frozen-thawed

  11. Systematic detection of positive selection in the human-pathogen interactome and lasting effects on infectious disease susceptibility.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Corona

    Full Text Available Infectious disease has shaped the natural genetic diversity of humans throughout the world. A new approach to capture positive selection driven by pathogens would provide information regarding pathogen exposure in distinct human populations and the constantly evolving arms race between host and disease-causing agents. We created a human pathogen interaction database and used the integrated haplotype score (iHS to detect recent positive selection in genes that interact with proteins from 26 different pathogens. We used the Human Genome Diversity Panel to identify specific populations harboring pathogen-interacting genes that have undergone positive selection. We found that human genes that interact with 9 pathogen species show evidence of recent positive selection. These pathogens are Yersenia pestis, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV 1, Zaire ebolavirus, Francisella tularensis, dengue virus, human respiratory syncytial virus, measles virus, Rubella virus, and Bacillus anthracis. For HIV-1, GWAS demonstrate that some naturally selected variants in the host-pathogen protein interaction networks continue to have functional consequences for susceptibility to these pathogens. We show that selected human genes were enriched for HIV susceptibility variants (identified through GWAS, providing further support for the hypothesis that ancient humans were exposed to lentivirus pandemics. Human genes in the Italian, Miao, and Biaka Pygmy populations that interact with Y. pestis show significant signs of selection. These results reveal some of the genetic footprints created by pathogens in the human genome that may have left lasting marks on susceptibility to infectious disease.

  12. Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials in the Treatment of Human Brucellosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solís García del Pozo, Julián; Solera, Javier

    2012-01-01

    Background Brucellosis is a persistent health problem in many developing countries throughout the world, and the search for simple and effective treatment continues to be of great importance. Methods and Findings A search was conducted in MEDLINE and in the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL). Clinical trials published from 1985 to present that assess different antimicrobial regimens in cases of documented acute uncomplicated human brucellosis were included. The primary outcomes were relapse, therapeutic failure, combined variable of relapse and therapeutic failure, and adverse effect rates. A meta-analysis with a fixed effect model was performed and odds ratio with 95% confidence intervals were calculated. A random effect model was used when significant heterogeneity between studies was verified. Comparison of combined doxycycline and rifampicin with a combination of doxycycline and streptomycin favors the latter regimen (OR = 3.17; CI95% = 2.05–4.91). There were no significant differences between combined doxycycline-streptomycin and combined doxycycline-gentamicin (OR = 1.89; CI95% = 0.81–4.39). Treatment with rifampicin and quinolones was similar to combined doxycycline-rifampicin (OR = 1.23; CI95% = 0.63–2.40). Only one study assessed triple therapy with aminoglycoside-doxycycline-rifampicin and only included patients with uncomplicated brucellosis. Thus this approach cannot be considered the therapy of choice until further studies have been performed. Combined doxycycline/co-trimoxazole or doxycycline monotherapy could represent a cost-effective alternative in certain patient groups, and further studies are needed in the future. Conclusions Although the preferred treatment in uncomplicated human brucellosis is doxycycline-aminoglycoside combination, other treatments based on oral regimens or monotherapy should not be rejected until they are better studied. Triple therapy should not be considered the current

  13. Genome-wide scans between two honeybee populations reveal putative signatures of human-mediated selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parejo, M; Wragg, D; Henriques, D; Vignal, A; Neuditschko, M

    2017-12-01

    Human-mediated selection has left signatures in the genomes of many domesticated animals, including the European dark honeybee, Apis mellifera mellifera, which has been selected by apiculturists for centuries. Using whole-genome sequence information, we investigated selection signatures in spatially separated honeybee subpopulations (Switzerland, n = 39 and France, n = 17). Three different test statistics were calculated in windows of 2 kb (fixation index, cross-population extended haplotype homozygosity and cross-population composite likelihood ratio) and combined into a recently developed composite selection score. Applying a stringent false discovery rate of 0.01, we identified six significant selective sweeps distributed across five chromosomes covering eight genes. These genes are associated with multiple molecular and biological functions, including regulation of transcription, receptor binding and signal transduction. Of particular interest is a selection signature on chromosome 1, which corresponds to the WNT4 gene, the family of which is conserved across the animal kingdom with a variety of functions. In Drosophila melanogaster, WNT4 alleles have been associated with differential wing, cross vein and abdominal phenotypes. Defining phenotypic characteristics of different Apis mellifera ssp., which are typically used as selection criteria, include colour and wing venation pattern. This signal is therefore likely to be a good candidate for human mediated-selection arising from different applied breeding practices in the two managed populations. © 2017 The Authors. Animal Genetics published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Stichting International Foundation for Animal Genetics.

  14. Frequency-Selective Attention in Auditory Scenes Recruits Frequency Representations Throughout Human Superior Temporal Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riecke, Lars; Peters, Judith C; Valente, Giancarlo; Kemper, Valentin G; Formisano, Elia; Sorger, Bettina

    2017-05-01

    A sound of interest may be tracked amid other salient sounds by focusing attention on its characteristic features including its frequency. Functional magnetic resonance imaging findings have indicated that frequency representations in human primary auditory cortex (AC) contribute to this feat. However, attentional modulations were examined at relatively low spatial and spectral resolutions, and frequency-selective contributions outside the primary AC could not be established. To address these issues, we compared blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) responses in the superior temporal cortex of human listeners while they identified single frequencies versus listened selectively for various frequencies within a multifrequency scene. Using best-frequency mapping, we observed that the detailed spatial layout of attention-induced BOLD response enhancements in primary AC follows the tonotopy of stimulus-driven frequency representations-analogous to the "spotlight" of attention enhancing visuospatial representations in retinotopic visual cortex. Moreover, using an algorithm trained to discriminate stimulus-driven frequency representations, we could successfully decode the focus of frequency-selective attention from listeners' BOLD response patterns in nonprimary AC. Our results indicate that the human brain facilitates selective listening to a frequency of interest in a scene by reinforcing the fine-grained activity pattern throughout the entire superior temporal cortex that would be evoked if that frequency was present alone. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. Irisin and exercise training in humans - results from a randomized controlled training trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hecksteden, Anne; Wegmann, Melissa; Steffen, Anke; Kraushaar, Jochen; Morsch, Arne; Ruppenthal, Sandra; Kaestner, Lars; Meyer, Tim

    2013-11-05

    The recent discovery of a new myokine (irisin) potentially involved in health-related training effects has gained great attention, but evidence for a training-induced increase in irisin remains preliminary. Therefore, the present study aimed to determine whether irisin concentration is increased after regular exercise training in humans. In a randomized controlled design, two guideline conforming training interventions were studied. Inclusion criteria were age 30 to 60 years, Physical performance provided positive control for the overall efficacy of training. Differences between groups were tested for significance using analysis of variance. For post hoc comparisons with the control group, Dunnett's test was used. Maximum performance increased significantly in the training groups compared with controls (controls: ±0.0 ± 0.7 km/h; AET: 1.1 ± 0.6 km/h, P error probability = 0.7). The general upward trend was mainly accounted for by a negative association of irisin concentration with the storage duration of frozen serum samples (P storage of samples from initial tests.

  16. CpG islands undermethylation in human genomic regions under selective pressure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Cocozza

    Full Text Available DNA methylation at CpG islands (CGIs is one of the most intensively studied epigenetic mechanisms. It is fundamental for cellular differentiation and control of transcriptional potential. DNA methylation is involved also in several processes that are central to evolutionary biology, including phenotypic plasticity and evolvability. In this study, we explored the relationship between CpG islands methylation and signatures of selective pressure in Homo Sapiens, using a computational biology approach. By analyzing methylation data of 25 cell lines from the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE Consortium, we compared the DNA methylation of CpG islands in genomic regions under selective pressure with the methylation of CpG islands in the remaining part of the genome. To define genomic regions under selective pressure, we used three different methods, each oriented to provide distinct information about selective events. Independently of the method and of the cell type used, we found evidences of undermethylation of CGIs in human genomic regions under selective pressure. Additionally, by analyzing SNP frequency in CpG islands, we demonstrated that CpG islands in regions under selective pressure show lower genetic variation. Our findings suggest that the CpG islands in regions under selective pressure seem to be somehow more "protected" from methylation when compared with other regions of the genome.

  17. Dissociable contributions of the human amygdala and orbitofrontal cortex to incentive motivation and goal selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arana, F Sergio; Parkinson, John A; Hinton, Elanor; Holland, Anthony J; Owen, Adrian M; Roberts, Angela C

    2003-10-22

    Theories of incentive motivation attempt to capture the way in which objects and events in the world can acquire high motivational value and drive behavior, even in the absence of a clear biological need. In addition, for an individual to select the most appropriate goal, the incentive values of competing desirable objects need to be defined and compared. The present study examined the neural substrates by which appetitive incentive value influences prospective goal selection, using positron emission tomographic neuroimaging in humans. Sated subjects were shown a series of restaurant menus that varied in incentive value, specifically tailored for each individual, and in half the trials, were asked to make a selection from the menu. The amygdala was activated by high-incentive menus regardless of whether a choice was required. Indeed, activity in this region varied as a function of individual subjective ratings of incentive value. In contrast, distinct regions of the orbitofrontal cortex were recruited both during incentive judgments and goal selection. Activity in the medial orbital cortex showed a greater response to high-incentive menus and when making a choice, with the latter activity also correlating with subjective ratings of difficulty. Lateral orbitofrontal activity was observed selectively when participants had to suppress responses to alternative desirable items to select their most preferred. Taken together, these data highlight the differential contribution of the amygdala and regions within the orbitofrontal cortex in a neural system underlying the selection of goals based on the prospective incentive value of stimuli, over and above homeostatic influences.

  18. Genome-wide detection and characterization of positive selection in human populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabeti, Pardis C; Varilly, Patrick; Fry, Ben; Lohmueller, Jason; Hostetter, Elizabeth; Cotsapas, Chris; Xie, Xiaohui; Byrne, Elizabeth H; McCarroll, Steven A; Gaudet, Rachelle; Schaffner, Stephen F; Lander, Eric S; Frazer, Kelly A; Ballinger, Dennis G; Cox, David R; Hinds, David A; Stuve, Laura L; Gibbs, Richard A; Belmont, John W; Boudreau, Andrew; Hardenbol, Paul; Leal, Suzanne M; Pasternak, Shiran; Wheeler, David A; Willis, Thomas D; Yu, Fuli; Yang, Huanming; Zeng, Changqing; Gao, Yang; Hu, Haoran; Hu, Weitao; Li, Chaohua; Lin, Wei; Liu, Siqi; Pan, Hao; Tang, Xiaoli; Wang, Jian; Wang, Wei; Yu, Jun; Zhang, Bo; Zhang, Qingrun; Zhao, Hongbin; Zhao, Hui; Zhou, Jun; Gabriel, Stacey B; Barry, Rachel; Blumenstiel, Brendan; Camargo, Amy; Defelice, Matthew; Faggart, Maura; Goyette, Mary; Gupta, Supriya; Moore, Jamie; Nguyen, Huy; Onofrio, Robert C; Parkin, Melissa; Roy, Jessica; Stahl, Erich; Winchester, Ellen; Ziaugra, Liuda; Altshuler, David; Shen, Yan; Yao, Zhijian; Huang, Wei; Chu, Xun; He, Yungang; Jin, Li; Liu, Yangfan; Shen, Yayun; Sun, Weiwei; Wang, Haifeng; Wang, Yi; Wang, Ying; Xiong, Xiaoyan; Xu, Liang; Waye, Mary M Y; Tsui, Stephen K W; Xue, Hong; Wong, J Tze-Fei; Galver, Luana M; Fan, Jian-Bing; Gunderson, Kevin; Murray, Sarah S; Oliphant, Arnold R; Chee, Mark S; Montpetit, Alexandre; Chagnon, Fanny; Ferretti, Vincent; Leboeuf, Martin; Olivier, Jean-François; Phillips, Michael S; Roumy, Stéphanie; Sallée, Clémentine; Verner, Andrei; Hudson, Thomas J; Kwok, Pui-Yan; Cai, Dongmei; Koboldt, Daniel C; Miller, Raymond D; Pawlikowska, Ludmila; Taillon-Miller, Patricia; Xiao, Ming; Tsui, Lap-Chee; Mak, William; Song, You Qiang; Tam, Paul K H; Nakamura, Yusuke; Kawaguchi, Takahisa; Kitamoto, Takuya; Morizono, Takashi; Nagashima, Atsushi; Ohnishi, Yozo; Sekine, Akihiro; Tanaka, Toshihiro; Tsunoda, Tatsuhiko; Deloukas, Panos; Bird, Christine P; Delgado, Marcos; Dermitzakis, Emmanouil T; Gwilliam, Rhian; Hunt, Sarah; Morrison, Jonathan; Powell, Don; Stranger, Barbara E; Whittaker, Pamela; Bentley, David R; Daly, Mark J; de Bakker, Paul I W; Barrett, Jeff; Chretien, Yves R; Maller, Julian; McCarroll, Steve; Patterson, Nick; Pe'er, Itsik; Price, Alkes; Purcell, Shaun; Richter, Daniel J; Sabeti, Pardis; Saxena, Richa; Schaffner, Stephen F; Sham, Pak C; Varilly, Patrick; Altshuler, David; Stein, Lincoln D; Krishnan, Lalitha; Smith, Albert Vernon; Tello-Ruiz, Marcela K; Thorisson, Gudmundur A; Chakravarti, Aravinda; Chen, Peter E; Cutler, David J; Kashuk, Carl S; Lin, Shin; Abecasis, Gonçalo R; Guan, Weihua; Li, Yun; Munro, Heather M; Qin, Zhaohui Steve; Thomas, Daryl J; McVean, Gilean; Auton, Adam; Bottolo, Leonardo; Cardin, Niall; Eyheramendy, Susana; Freeman, Colin; Marchini, Jonathan; Myers, Simon; Spencer, Chris; Stephens, Matthew; Donnelly, Peter; Cardon, Lon R; Clarke, Geraldine; Evans, David M; Morris, Andrew P; Weir, Bruce S; Tsunoda, Tatsuhiko; Johnson, Todd A; Mullikin, James C; Sherry, Stephen T; Feolo, Michael; Skol, Andrew; Zhang, Houcan; Zeng, Changqing; Zhao, Hui; Matsuda, Ichiro; Fukushima, Yoshimitsu; Macer, Darryl R; Suda, Eiko; Rotimi, Charles N; Adebamowo, Clement A; Ajayi, Ike; Aniagwu, Toyin; Marshall, Patricia A; Nkwodimmah, Chibuzor; Royal, Charmaine D M; Leppert, Mark F; Dixon, Missy; Peiffer, Andy; Qiu, Renzong; Kent, Alastair; Kato, Kazuto; Niikawa, Norio; Adewole, Isaac F; Knoppers, Bartha M; Foster, Morris W; Clayton, Ellen Wright; Watkin, Jessica; Gibbs, Richard A; Belmont, John W; Muzny, Donna; Nazareth, Lynne; Sodergren, Erica; Weinstock, George M; Wheeler, David A; Yakub, Imtaz; Gabriel, Stacey B; Onofrio, Robert C; Richter, Daniel J; Ziaugra, Liuda; Birren, Bruce W; Daly, Mark J; Altshuler, David; Wilson, Richard K; Fulton, Lucinda L; Rogers, Jane; Burton, John; Carter, Nigel P; Clee, Christopher M; Griffiths, Mark; Jones, Matthew C; McLay, Kirsten; Plumb, Robert W; Ross, Mark T; Sims, Sarah K; Willey, David L; Chen, Zhu; Han, Hua; Kang, Le; Godbout, Martin; Wallenburg, John C; L'Archevêque, Paul; Bellemare, Guy; Saeki, Koji; Wang, Hongguang; An, Daochang; Fu, Hongbo; Li, Qing; Wang, Zhen; Wang, Renwu; Holden, Arthur L; Brooks, Lisa D; McEwen, Jean E; Guyer, Mark S; Wang, Vivian Ota; Peterson, Jane L; Shi, Michael; Spiegel, Jack; Sung, Lawrence M; Zacharia, Lynn F; Collins, Francis S; Kennedy, Karen; Jamieson, Ruth; Stewart, John

    2007-10-18

    With the advent of dense maps of human genetic variation, it is now possible to detect positive natural selection across the human genome. Here we report an analysis of over 3 million polymorphisms from the International HapMap Project Phase 2 (HapMap2). We used 'long-range haplotype' methods, which were developed to identify alleles segregating in a population that have undergone recent selection, and we also developed new methods that are based on cross-population comparisons to discover alleles that have swept to near-fixation within a population. The analysis reveals more than 300 strong candidate regions. Focusing on the strongest 22 regions, we develop a heuristic for scrutinizing these regions to identify candidate targets of selection. In a complementary analysis, we identify 26 non-synonymous, coding, single nucleotide polymorphisms showing regional evidence of positive selection. Examination of these candidates highlights three cases in which two genes in a common biological process have apparently undergone positive selection in the same population:LARGE and DMD, both related to infection by the Lassa virus, in West Africa;SLC24A5 and SLC45A2, both involved in skin pigmentation, in Europe; and EDAR and EDA2R, both involved in development of hair follicles, in Asia.

  19. A Novel Mechanism of Sugar Selection Utilized by a Human X-family DNA Polymerase†

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Jessica A.; Fiala, Kevin A.; Fowler, Jason D.; Sherrer, Shanen M.; Newmister, Sean A.; Dyum, Wade W.; Suo, Zucai

    2009-01-01

    During DNA synthesis, most DNA polymerases and reverse transcriptases select against ribonucleotides via a steric clash between the ribose 2′-hydroxyl group and the bulky side chain of an active site residue. Here, we demonstrated that human DNA polymerase λ used a novel sugar selection mechanism to discriminate against ribonucleotides, whereby the ribose 2′-hydroxyl group was excluded mostly by a backbone segment and slightly by the side chain of Y505. Such a steric clash was further demonstrated to be dependent on the size and orientation of the substituent covalently attached at the ribonucleotide C2′ position. PMID:19900463

  20. Randomized comparison of vaginal self-sampling by standard vs. dry swabs for Human papillomavirus testing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eperon, Isabelle; Vassilakos, Pierre; Navarria, Isabelle; Menoud, Pierre-Alain; Gauthier, Aude; Pache, Jean-Claude; Boulvain, Michel; Untiet, Sarah; Petignat, Patrick

    2013-01-01

    To evaluate if human papillomavirus (HPV) self-sampling (Self-HPV) using a dry vaginal swab is a valid alternative for HPV testing. Women attending colposcopy clinic were recruited to collect two consecutive Self-HPV samples: a Self-HPV using a dry swab (S-DRY) and a Self-HPV using a standard wet transport medium (S-WET). These samples were analyzed for HPV using real time PCR (Roche Cobas). Participants were randomized to determine the order of the tests. Questionnaires assessing preferences and acceptability for both tests were conducted. Subsequently, women were invited for colposcopic examination; a physician collected a cervical sample (physician-sampling) with a broom-type device and placed it into a liquid-based cytology medium. Specimens were then processed for the production of cytology slides and a Hybrid Capture HPV DNA test (Qiagen) was performed from the residual liquid. Biopsies were performed if indicated. Unweighted kappa statistics (κ) and McNemar tests were used to measure the agreement among the sampling methods. A total of 120 women were randomized. Overall HPV prevalence was 68.7% (95% Confidence Interval (CI) 59.3–77.2) by S-WET, 54.4% (95% CI 44.8–63.9) by S-DRY and 53.8% (95% CI 43.8–63.7) by HC. Among paired samples (S-WET and S-DRY), the overall agreement was good (85.7%; 95% CI 77.8–91.6) and the κ was substantial (0.70; 95% CI 0.57-0.70). The proportion of positive type-specific HPV agreement was also good (77.3%; 95% CI 68.2-84.9). No differences in sensitivity for cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grade one (CIN1) or worse between the two Self-HPV tests were observed. Women reported the two Self-HPV tests as highly acceptable. Self-HPV using dry swab transfer does not appear to compromise specimen integrity. Further study in a large screening population is needed. ClinicalTrials.gov: http://clinicaltrials.gov/show/NCT01316120

  1. Spatiotemporal prediction of daily ambient ozone levels across China using random forest for human exposure assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhan, Yu; Luo, Yuzhou; Deng, Xunfei; Grieneisen, Michael L; Zhang, Minghua; Di, Baofeng

    2018-02-01

    In China, ozone pollution shows an increasing trend and becomes the primary air pollutant in warm seasons. Leveraging the air quality monitoring network, a random forest model is developed to predict the daily maximum 8-h average ozone concentrations ([O 3 ] MDA8 ) across China in 2015 for human exposure assessment. This model captures the observed spatiotemporal variations of [O 3 ] MDA8 by using the data of meteorology, elevation, and recent-year emission inventories (cross-validation R 2  = 0.69 and RMSE = 26 μg/m 3 ). Compared with chemical transport models that require a plenty of variables and expensive computation, the random forest model shows comparable or higher predictive performance based on only a handful of readily-available variables at much lower computational cost. The nationwide population-weighted [O 3 ] MDA8 is predicted to be 84 ± 23 μg/m 3 annually, with the highest seasonal mean in the summer (103 ± 8 μg/m 3 ). The summer [O 3 ] MDA8 is predicted to be the highest in North China (125 ± 17 μg/m 3 ). Approximately 58% of the population lives in areas with more than 100 nonattainment days ([O 3 ] MDA8 >100 μg/m 3 ), and 12% of the population are exposed to [O 3 ] MDA8 >160 μg/m 3 (WHO Interim Target 1) for more than 30 days. As the most populous zones in China, the Beijing-Tianjin Metro, Yangtze River Delta, Pearl River Delta, and Sichuan Basin are predicted to be at 154, 141, 124, and 98 nonattainment days, respectively. Effective controls of O 3 pollution are urgently needed for the highly-populated zones, especially the Beijing-Tianjin Metro with seasonal [O 3 ] MDA8 of 140 ± 29 μg/m 3 in summer. To the best of the authors' knowledge, this study is the first statistical modeling work of ambient O 3 for China at the national level. This timely and extensively validated [O 3 ] MDA8 dataset is valuable for refining epidemiological analyses on O 3 pollution in China. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights

  2. The human auditory brainstem response to running speech reveals a subcortical mechanism for selective attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forte, Antonio Elia; Etard, Octave; Reichenbach, Tobias

    2017-10-10

    Humans excel at selectively listening to a target speaker in background noise such as competing voices. While the encoding of speech in the auditory cortex is modulated by selective attention, it remains debated whether such modulation occurs already in subcortical auditory structures. Investigating the contribution of the human brainstem to attention has, in particular, been hindered by the tiny amplitude of the brainstem response. Its measurement normally requires a large number of repetitions of the same short sound stimuli, which may lead to a loss of attention and to neural adaptation. Here we develop a mathematical method to measure the auditory brainstem response to running speech, an acoustic stimulus that does not repeat and that has a high ecological validity. We employ this method to assess the brainstem's activity when a subject listens to one of two competing speakers, and show that the brainstem response is consistently modulated by attention.

  3. EVALUATION OF HUMAN RELIABILITY IN SELECTED ACTIVITIES IN THE RAILWAY INDUSTRY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erika SUJOVÁ

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The article focuses on evaluation of human reliability in the human – machine system in the railway industry. Based on a survey of a train dispatcher and of selected activities, we have identified risk factors affecting the dispatcher‘s work and the evaluated risk level of their influence on the reliability and safety of preformed activities. The research took place at the authors‘ work place between 2012-2013. A survey method was used. With its help, authors were able to identify selected work activities of train dispatcher’s risk factors that affect his/her work and the evaluated seriousness of its in-fluence on the reliability and safety of performed activities. Amongst the most important finding fall expressions of un-clear and complicated internal regulations and work processes, a feeling of being overworked, fear for one’s safety at small, insufficiently protected stations.

  4. Specifics of Educational Texts Selection for Schoolchildren Doing the Humanities Subjects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. V. Oblasova

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper proposes the new approach to educational text selection for the humanities teaching. Its specifics is based on the wide interpretation of educational texts, as the culture texts involved in cognitive learning activity and fulfilling the multiple tasks of the related subjects and personal development. The educational text is taken as a generalized model, its content and structure determining the scheme of a speech cognitive activity, as well as the meaning formation mechanism responsible for understanding and personal development. The texts and tasks selection is oriented on schoolchildren’s understanding with the reference to the psycholinguistic, psychological and hermeneutic approaches; information extraction and interpretation level related to the author’s and student’s context. The given approach could provide the basis for developing and structuring the textbooks content for the humanities subjects. 

  5. Agape as the Quintessence of Human Existence In Mitch Albom’s Selected Novels

    OpenAIRE

    Dr. Maria Luisa A. Valdez

    2014-01-01

    This study generally aimed to analyze the doctrine of agape as the quintessence of human existence in Mitch Albom’s selected novels and their implications on noted Filipino values. This paper employed the qualitative philosophical method of research in analyzing the tenets of agape in the representative literary works chosen. This involved the science of textual criticism and hermeneutics supported by the researcher’s analysis and insights with reference to the content of the t...

  6. Selective sweep on human amylase genes postdates the split with Neanderthals

    OpenAIRE

    Inchley, Charlotte E.; Larbey, Cynthia D. A.; Shwan, Nzar A. A.; Pagani, Luca; Saag, Lauri; Antão, Tiago; Jacobs, Guy; Hudjashov, Georgi; Metspalu, Ene; Mitt, Mario; Eichstaedt, Christina A.; Malyarchuk, Boris; Derenko, Miroslava; Wee, Joseph; Abdullah, Syafiq

    2016-01-01

    Humans have more copies of amylase genes than other primates. It is still poorly understood, however, when the copy number expansion occurred and whether its spread was enhanced by selection. Here we assess amylase copy numbers in a global sample of 480 high coverage genomes and find that regions flanking the amylase locus show notable depression of genetic diversity both in African and non-African populations. Analysis of genetic variation in these regions supports the model of an early sele...

  7. Genetic evidence for natural selection in humans in the contemporary United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beauchamp, Jonathan P

    2016-07-12

    Recent findings from molecular genetics now make it possible to test directly for natural selection by analyzing whether genetic variants associated with various phenotypes have been under selection. I leverage these findings to construct polygenic scores that use individuals' genotypes to predict their body mass index, educational attainment (EA), glucose concentration, height, schizophrenia, total cholesterol, and (in females) age at menarche. I then examine associations between these scores and fitness to test whether natural selection has been occurring. My study sample includes individuals of European ancestry born between 1931 and 1953 who participated in the Health and Retirement Study, a representative study of the US population. My results imply that natural selection has been slowly favoring lower EA in both females and males, and are suggestive that natural selection may have favored a higher age at menarche in females. For EA, my estimates imply a rate of selection of about -1.5 mo of education per generation (which pales in comparison with the increases in EA observed in contemporary times). Although they cannot be projected over more than one generation, my results provide additional evidence that humans are still evolving-albeit slowly, especially compared with the rapid changes that have occurred over the past few generations due to cultural and environmental factors.

  8. Proposed Project Selection Method for Human Support Research and Technology Development (HSR&TD)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Harry

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of HSR&TD is to deliver human support technologies to the Exploration Systems Mission Directorate (ESMD) that will be selected for future missions. This requires identifying promising candidate technologies and advancing them in technology readiness until they are acceptable. HSR&TD must select an may of technology development projects, guide them, and either terminate or continue them, so as to maximize the resulting number of usable advanced human support technologies. This paper proposes an effective project scoring methodology to support managing the HSR&TD project portfolio. Researchers strongly disagree as to what are the best technology project selection methods, or even if there are any proven ones. Technology development is risky and outstanding achievements are rare and unpredictable. There is no simple formula for success. Organizations that are satisfied with their project selection approach typically use a mix of financial, strategic, and scoring methods in an open, established, explicit, formal process. This approach helps to build consensus and develop management insight. It encourages better project proposals by clarifying the desired project attributes. We propose a project scoring technique based on a method previously used in a federal laboratory and supported by recent research. Projects are ranked by their perceived relevance, risk, and return - a new 3 R's. Relevance is the degree to which the project objective supports the HSR&TD goal of developing usable advanced human support technologies. Risk is the estimated probability that the project will achieve its specific objective. Return is the reduction in mission life cycle cost obtained if the project is successful. If the project objective technology performs a new function with no current cost, its return is the estimated cash value of performing the new function. The proposed project selection scoring method includes definitions of the criteria, a project evaluation

  9. Signatures of environmental genetic adaptation pinpoint pathogens as the main selective pressure through human evolution.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matteo Fumagalli

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Previous genome-wide scans of positive natural selection in humans have identified a number of non-neutrally evolving genes that play important roles in skin pigmentation, metabolism, or immune function. Recent studies have also shown that a genome-wide pattern of local adaptation can be detected by identifying correlations between patterns of allele frequencies and environmental variables. Despite these observations, the degree to which natural selection is primarily driven by adaptation to local environments, and the role of pathogens or other ecological factors as selective agents, is still under debate. To address this issue, we correlated the spatial allele frequency distribution of a large sample of SNPs from 55 distinct human populations to a set of environmental factors that describe local geographical features such as climate, diet regimes, and pathogen loads. In concordance with previous studies, we detected a significant enrichment of genic SNPs, and particularly non-synonymous SNPs associated with local adaptation. Furthermore, we show that the diversity of the local pathogenic environment is the predominant driver of local adaptation, and that climate, at least as measured here, only plays a relatively minor role. While background demography by far makes the strongest contribution in explaining the genetic variance among populations, we detected about 100 genes which show an unexpectedly strong correlation between allele frequencies and pathogenic environment, after correcting for demography. Conversely, for diet regimes and climatic conditions, no genes show a similar correlation between the environmental factor and allele frequencies. This result is validated using low-coverage sequencing data for multiple populations. Among the loci targeted by pathogen-driven selection, we found an enrichment of genes associated to autoimmune diseases, such as celiac disease, type 1 diabetes, and multiples sclerosis, which lends credence to the

  10. HLA DNA sequence variation among human populations: molecular signatures of demographic and selective events.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stéphane Buhler

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Molecular differences between HLA alleles vary up to 57 nucleotides within the peptide binding coding region of human Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC genes, but it is still unclear whether this variation results from a stochastic process or from selective constraints related to functional differences among HLA molecules. Although HLA alleles are generally treated as equidistant molecular units in population genetic studies, DNA sequence diversity among populations is also crucial to interpret the observed HLA polymorphism. In this study, we used a large dataset of 2,062 DNA sequences defined for the different HLA alleles to analyze nucleotide diversity of seven HLA genes in 23,500 individuals of about 200 populations spread worldwide. We first analyzed the HLA molecular structure and diversity of these populations in relation to geographic variation and we further investigated possible departures from selective neutrality through Tajima's tests and mismatch distributions. All results were compared to those obtained by classical approaches applied to HLA allele frequencies.Our study shows that the global patterns of HLA nucleotide diversity among populations are significantly correlated to geography, although in some specific cases the molecular information reveals unexpected genetic relationships. At all loci except HLA-DPB1, populations have accumulated a high proportion of very divergent alleles, suggesting an advantage of heterozygotes expressing molecularly distant HLA molecules (asymmetric overdominant selection model. However, both different intensities of selection and unequal levels of gene conversion may explain the heterogeneous mismatch distributions observed among the loci. Also, distinctive patterns of sequence divergence observed at the HLA-DPB1 locus suggest current neutrality but old selective pressures on this gene. We conclude that HLA DNA sequences advantageously complement HLA allele frequencies as a source of data used

  11. Sexual selection of human cooperative behaviour: an experimental study in rural Senegal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arnaud Tognetti

    Full Text Available Human cooperation in large groups and between non-kin individuals remains a Darwinian puzzle. Investigations into whether and how sexual selection is involved in the evolution of cooperation represent a new and important research direction. Here, 69 groups of four men or four women recruited from a rural population in Senegal played a sequential public-good game in the presence of out-group observers, either of the same sex or of the opposite sex. At the end of the game, participants could donate part of their gain to the village school in the presence of the same observers. Both contributions to the public good and donations to the school, which reflect different components of cooperativeness, were influenced by the sex of the observers. The results suggest that in this non-Western population, sexual selection acts mainly on men's cooperative behaviour with non-kin, whereas women's cooperativeness is mainly influenced by nonsexual social selection.

  12. LEGAL ISSUES AND ASPECTS RELATED TO THE HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGEMENT REGARDING THE SELECTION OF CIVIL SERVANTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MELINDA CENUŞE

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Public administration selects its servants exclusively on competence criteria (the so-called merit system. The selection of civil servants is performed by contest, organized within the limit of vacant public positions provided annually for this purpose, by the plan for occupation of public positions. As a general rule, the contest is organized on a quarterly basis. Any individual who meets the general conditions provided by law and the specific conditions established by law for occupying a certain public position may participate at the selection contest organized for the occupation of a public position. Among other aspects, in this study we underline an inconsistency regarding the recruitment defined in the field of Human Resources Management and its definition from The Statute of the Civil Servants.

  13. Biased random key genetic algorithm with insertion and gender selection for capacitated vehicle routing problem with time windows

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rochman, Auliya Noor; Prasetyo, Hari; Nugroho, Munajat Tri

    2017-06-01

    Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP) often occurs when the manufacturers need to distribute their product to some customers/outlets. The distribution process is typically restricted by the capacity of the vehicle and the working hours at the distributor. This type of VRP is also known as Capacitated Vehicle Routing Problem with Time Windows (CVRPTW). A Biased Random Key Genetic Algorithm (BRKGA) was designed and coded in MATLAB to solve the CVRPTW case of soft drink distribution. The standard BRKGA was then modified by applying chromosome insertion into the initial population and defining chromosome gender for parent undergoing crossover operation. The performance of the established algorithms was then compared to a heuristic procedure for solving a soft drink distribution. Some findings are revealed (1) the total distribution cost of BRKGA with insertion (BRKGA-I) results in a cost saving of 39% compared to the total cost of heuristic method, (2) BRKGA with the gender selection (BRKGA-GS) could further improve the performance of the heuristic method. However, the BRKGA-GS tends to yield worse results compared to that obtained from the standard BRKGA.

  14. Sequence-Based Prediction of RNA-Binding Proteins Using Random Forest with Minimum Redundancy Maximum Relevance Feature Selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xin Ma

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The prediction of RNA-binding proteins is one of the most challenging problems in computation biology. Although some studies have investigated this problem, the accuracy of prediction is still not sufficient. In this study, a highly accurate method was developed to predict RNA-binding proteins from amino acid sequences using random forests with the minimum redundancy maximum relevance (mRMR method, followed by incremental feature selection (IFS. We incorporated features of conjoint triad features and three novel features: binding propensity (BP, nonbinding propensity (NBP, and evolutionary information combined with physicochemical properties (EIPP. The results showed that these novel features have important roles in improving the performance of the predictor. Using the mRMR-IFS method, our predictor achieved the best performance (86.62% accuracy and 0.737 Matthews correlation coefficient. High prediction accuracy and successful prediction performance suggested that our method can be a useful approach to identify RNA-binding proteins from sequence information.

  15. Optimal Subset Selection of Time-Series MODIS Images and Sample Data Transfer with Random Forests for Supervised Classification Modelling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Fuqun; Zhang, Aining

    2016-10-25

    Nowadays, various time-series Earth Observation data with multiple bands are freely available, such as Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) datasets including 8-day composites from NASA, and 10-day composites from the Canada Centre for Remote Sensing (CCRS). It is challenging to efficiently use these time-series MODIS datasets for long-term environmental monitoring due to their vast volume and information redundancy. This challenge will be greater when Sentinel 2-3 data become available. Another challenge that researchers face is the lack of in-situ data for supervised modelling, especially for time-series data analysis. In this study, we attempt to tackle the two important issues with a case study of land cover mapping using CCRS 10-day MODIS composites with the help of Random Forests' features: variable importance, outlier identification. The variable importance feature is used to analyze and select optimal subsets of time-series MODIS imagery for efficient land cover mapping, and the outlier identification feature is utilized for transferring sample data available from one year to an adjacent year for supervised classification modelling. The results of the case study of agricultural land cover classification at a regional scale show that using only about a half of the variables we can achieve land cover classification accuracy close to that generated using the full dataset. The proposed simple but effective solution of sample transferring could make supervised modelling possible for applications lacking sample data.

  16. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) for post-partum depression (PPD): a systematic review of randomized clinical trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Crescenzo, Franco; Perelli, Federica; Armando, Marco; Vicari, Stefano

    2014-01-01

    The treatment of postpartum depression with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) has been claimed to be both efficacious and well tolerated, but no recent systematic reviews have been conducted. A qualitative systematic review of randomized clinical trials on women with postpartum depression comparing SSRIs to placebo and/or other treatments was performed. A comprehensive literature search of online databases, the bibliographies of published articles and grey literature were conducted. Data on efficacy, acceptability and tolerability were extracted and the quality of the trials was assessed. Six randomised clinical trials, comprising 595 patients, met quality criteria for inclusion in the analysis. Cognitive-behavioural intervention, psychosocial community-based intervention, psychodynamic therapy, cognitive behavioural therapy, a second-generation tricyclic antidepressant and placebo were used as comparisons. All studies demonstrated higher response and remission rates among those treated with SSRIs and greater mean changes on depression scales, although findings were not always statistically significant. Dropout rates were high in three of the trials but similar among treatment and comparison groups. In general, SSRIs were well tolerated and trial quality was good. There are few trials, patients included in the trials were not representative of all patients with postpartum depression, dropout rates in three trials were high, and long-term efficacy and tolerability were assessed in only two trials. SSRIs appear to be efficacious and well tolerated in the treatment of postpartum depression, but the available evidence fails to demonstrate a clear superiority over other treatments. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Narcissism Guides Mate Selection: Humans Mate Assortatively, as Revealed by Facial Resemblance, following an Algorithm of “Self Seeking Like”

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liliana Alvarez

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Theoretical studies suggest that mating and pair formation is not likely to be random. Computer simulations suggested that sex among genetically complex organisms requires mate choice strategies for its evolutionary maintenance, to reduce excessive genetic variance produced by out-crossing. One strategy achieving this aim efficiently in computer simulations is assortative mating modeled as “self seeking like”. Another one is selection of “good genes”. Assortative mating increases the probability of finding a genetically similar mate, without fomenting inbreeding, achieving assortative mating without hindering the working of other mate selection strategies which aim to maximize the search for “good genes”, optimizing the working of sex in evolutionary terms. Here we present indirect evidence that in a significant proportion of human reproductive couples, the partners show much higher facial resemblances than can be expected by random pair formation, or as the outcome of “matching for attractiveness” or the outcome of competition for the most attractive partner accessible, as had been previously assumed. The data presented is compatible with the hypothesis derived from computer simulations, that human mate selection strategies achieve various aims: “self seeking like” (including matching for attractiveness and mating with the best available genes.

  18. Assisted selection in the improvement of soy for human consumption in the State of Tocantins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aristoteles Capone

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Soy in human food has several health benefits, but finds resistance to its consumption by the western ones due to the flavor caused by the lipoxygenases enzymes. The objective of this study was to select soybean TN (Triple Null hybrids in a population of the fourth self-fertilization cycle (F4 using techniques that use molecular markers. The experiment was conducted in the experimental area of the Federal University of Tocantins Campus Gurupi - TO. Hybridizations between soybean progenitors adapted to Tocantins and TN were performed. Obtained the F1 population in the greenhouse, F2, F3 and F4 were planted in the field, in the F4 generation was selection of superior hybrid for DNA analysis in order to identify hybrids with the trait complete absence of Lox2 and 3. We selected one hundred seventy-one hybrid, made up of DNA extraction and PCR of all. It was concluded that the highest percentage of TN hybrids was obtained at the intersection BRSMG 790A (TN X GB874. Lox2 and Lox3 amplification primers confirmed as an essential tool in a soybean breeding program for human consumption. We selected 34 TN hybrids with the desired agronomic characteristics.

  19. Both selective and neutral processes drive GC content evolution in the human genome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cagliani Rachele

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mammalian genomes consist of regions differing in GC content, referred to as isochores or GC-content domains. The scientific debate is still open as to whether such compositional heterogeneity is a selected or neutral trait. Results Here we analyze SNP allele frequencies, retrotransposon insertion polymorphisms (RIPs, as well as fixed substitutions accumulated in the human lineage since its divergence from chimpanzee to indicate that biased gene conversion (BGC has been playing a role in within-genome GC content variation. Yet, a distinct contribution to GC content evolution is accounted for by a selective process. Accordingly, we searched for independent evidences that GC content distribution does not conform to neutral expectations. Indeed, after correcting for possible biases, we show that intron GC content and size display isochore-specific correlations. Conclusion We consider that the more parsimonious explanation for our results is that GC content is subjected to the action of both weak selection and BGC in the human genome with features such as nucleosome positioning or chromatin conformation possibly representing the final target of selective processes. This view might reconcile previous contrasting findings and add some theoretical background to recent evidences suggesting that GC content domains display different behaviors with respect to highly regulated biological processes such as developmentally-stage related gene expression and programmed replication timing during neural stem cell differentiation.

  20. Selective ex-vivo photothermal ablation of human pancreatic cancer with albumin functionalized multiwalled carbon nanotubes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mocan, Lucian; Tabaran, Flaviu A; Mocan, Teodora; Bele, Constantin; Orza, Anamaria Ioana; Lucan, Ciprian; Stiufiuc, Rares; Manaila, Ioana; Iulia, Ferencz; Dana, Iancu; Zaharie, Florin; Osian, Gelu; Vlad, Liviu; Iancu, Cornel

    2011-01-01

    The process of laser-mediated ablation of cancer cells marked with biofunctionalized carbon nanotubes is frequently called "nanophotothermolysis". We herein present a method of selective nanophotothermolisys of pancreatic cancer (PC) using multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) functionalized with human serum albumin (HSA). With the purpose of testing the therapeutic value of these nanobioconjugates, we have developed an ex-vivo experimental platform. Surgically resected specimens from patients with PC were preserved in a cold medium and kept alive via intra-arterial perfusion. Additionally, the HSA-MWCNTs have been intra-arterially administered in the greater pancreatic artery under ultrasound guidance. Confocal and transmission electron microscopy combined with immunohistochemical staining have confirmed the selective accumulation of HSA-MWCNTs inside the human PC tissue. The external laser irradiation of the specimen has significantly produced extensive necrosis of the malign tissue after the intra-arterial administration of HSA-MWCNTs, without any harmful effects on the surrounding healthy parenchyma. We have obtained a selective photothermal ablation of the malign tissue based on the selective internalization of MWCNTs with HSA cargo inside the pancreatic adenocarcinoma after the ex-vivo intra-arterial perfusion.

  1. Signatures of natural selection at the FTO (fat mass and obesity associated locus in human populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xuanshi Liu

    Full Text Available Polymorphisms in the first intron of FTO have been robustly replicated for associations with obesity. In the Sorbs, a Slavic population resident in Germany, the strongest effect on body mass index (BMI was found for a variant in the third intron of FTO (rs17818902. Since this may indicate population specific effects of FTO variants, we initiated studies testing FTO for signatures of selection in vertebrate species and human populations.First, we analyzed the coding region of 35 vertebrate FTO orthologs with Phylogenetic Analysis by Maximum Likelihood (PAML, ω = dN/dS to screen for signatures of selection among species. Second, we investigated human population (Europeans/CEU, Yoruba/YRI, Chinese/CHB, Japanese/JPT, Sorbs SNP data for footprints of selection using DnaSP version 4.5 and the Haplotter/PhaseII. Finally, using ConSite we compared transcription factor (TF binding sites at sequences harbouring FTO SNPs in intron three.PAML analyses revealed strong conservation in coding region of FTO (ω<1. Sliding-window results from population genetic analyses provided highly significant (p<0.001 signatures for balancing selection specifically in the third intron (e.g. Tajima's D in Sorbs = 2.77. We observed several alterations in TF binding sites, e.g. TCF3 binding site introduced by the rs17818902 minor allele.Population genetic analysis revealed signatures of balancing selection at the FTO locus with a prominent signal in intron three, a genomic region with strong association with BMI in the Sorbs. Our data support the hypothesis that genes associated with obesity may have been under evolutionary selective pressure.

  2. Ticlopidine in Its Prodrug Form Is a Selective Inhibitor of Human NTPDase1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna Lecka

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Nucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolase-1 (NTPDase1, like other ectonucleotidases, controls extracellular nucleotide levels and consequently their (pathophysiological responses such as in thrombosis, inflammation, and cancer. Selective NTPDase1 inhibitors would therefore be very useful. We previously observed that ticlopidine in its prodrug form, which does not affect P2 receptor activity, inhibited the recombinant form of human NTPDase1 (Ki=14 μM. Here we tested whether ticlopidine can be used as a selective inhibitor of NTPDase1. We confirmed that ticlopidine inhibits NTPDase1 in different forms and in different assays. The ADPase activity of intact HUVEC as well as of COS-7 cells transfected with human NTPDase1 was strongly inhibited by 100 µM ticlopidine, 99 and 86%, respectively. Ticlopidine (100 µM completely inhibited the ATPase activity of NTPDase1 in situ as shown by enzyme histochemistry with human liver and pancreas sections. Ticlopidine also inhibited the activity of rat and mouse NTPDase1 and of potato apyrase. At 100 µM ticlopidine did not affect the activity of human NTPDase2, NTPDase3, and NTPDase8, nor of NPP1 and NPP3. Weak inhibition (10–20% of NTPDase3 and -8 was observed at 1 mM ticlopidine. These results show that ticlopidine is a specific inhibitor of NTPDase1 that can be used in enzymatic and histochemistry assays.

  3. An evolutionary theory of large-scale human warfare: Group-structured cultural selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zefferman, Matthew R; Mathew, Sarah

    2015-01-01

    When humans wage war, it is not unusual for battlefields to be strewn with dead warriors. These warriors typically were men in their reproductive prime who, had they not died in battle, might have gone on to father more children. Typically, they are also genetically unrelated to one another. We know of no other animal species in which reproductively capable, genetically unrelated individuals risk their lives in this manner. Because the immense private costs borne by individual warriors create benefits that are shared widely by others in their group, warfare is a stark evolutionary puzzle that is difficult to explain. Although several scholars have posited models of the evolution of human warfare, these models do not adequately explain how humans solve the problem of collective action in warfare at the evolutionarily novel scale of hundreds of genetically unrelated individuals. We propose that group-structured cultural selection explains this phenomenon. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Prolonged Integration Site Selection of a Lentiviral Vector in the Genome of Human Keratinocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Wei; Wang, Yong; Li, Rui-Fu; Zhou, Xin; Liu, Jing; Peng, Dai-Zhi

    2017-03-03

    BACKGROUND Lentiviral vectors have been successfully used for human skin cell gene transfer studies. Defining the selection of integration sites for retroviral vectors in the host genome is crucial in risk assessment analysis of gene therapy. However, genome-wide analyses of lentiviral integration sites in human keratinocytes, especially after prolonged growth, are poorly understood. MATERIAL AND METHODS In this study, 874 unique lentiviral vector integration sites in human HaCaT keratinocytes after long-term culture were identified and analyzed with the online tool GTSG-QuickMap and SPSS software. RESULTS The data indicated that lentiviral vectors showed integration site preferences for genes and gene-rich regions. CONCLUSIONS This study will likely assist in determining the relative risks of the lentiviral vector system and in the design of a safe lentiviral vector system in the gene therapy of skin diseases.

  5. EcmPred: Prediction of extracellular matrix proteins based on random forest with maximum relevance minimum redundancy feature selection

    KAUST Repository

    Kandaswamy, Krishna Kumar Umar

    2013-01-01

    The extracellular matrix (ECM) is a major component of tissues of multicellular organisms. It consists of secreted macromolecules, mainly polysaccharides and glycoproteins. Malfunctions of ECM proteins lead to severe disorders such as marfan syndrome, osteogenesis imperfecta, numerous chondrodysplasias, and skin diseases. In this work, we report a random forest approach, EcmPred, for the prediction of ECM proteins from protein sequences. EcmPred was trained on a dataset containing 300 ECM and 300 non-ECM and tested on a dataset containing 145 ECM and 4187 non-ECM proteins. EcmPred achieved 83% accuracy on the training and 77% on the test dataset. EcmPred predicted 15 out of 20 experimentally verified ECM proteins. By scanning the entire human proteome, we predicted novel ECM proteins validated with gene ontology and InterPro. The dataset and standalone version of the EcmPred software is available at http://www.inb.uni-luebeck.de/tools-demos/Extracellular_matrix_proteins/EcmPred. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

  6. Examination of Signatures of Recent Positive Selection on Genes Involved in Human Sialic Acid Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moon, Jiyun M; Aronoff, David M; Capra, John A; Abbot, Patrick; Rokas, Antonis

    2018-03-28

    Sialic acids are nine carbon sugars ubiquitously found on the surfaces of vertebrate cells and are involved in various immune response-related processes. In humans, at least 58 genes spanning diverse functions, from biosynthesis and activation to recycling and degradation, are involved in sialic acid biology. Because of their role in immunity, sialic acid biology genes have been hypothesized to exhibit elevated rates of evolutionary change. Consistent with this hypothesis, several genes involved in sialic acid biology have experienced higher rates of non-synonymous substitutions in the human lineage than their counterparts in other great apes, perhaps in response to ancient pathogens that infected hominins millions of years ago (paleopathogens). To test whether sialic acid biology genes have also experienced more recent positive selection during the evolution of the modern human lineage, reflecting adaptation to contemporary cosmopolitan or geographically-restricted pathogens, we examined whether their protein-coding regions showed evidence of recent hard and soft selective sweeps. This examination involved the calculation of four measures that quantify changes in allele frequency spectra, extent of population differentiation, and haplotype homozygosity caused by recent hard and soft selective sweeps for 55 sialic acid biology genes using publicly available whole genome sequencing data from 1,668 humans from three ethnic groups. To disentangle evidence for selection from confounding demographic effects, we compared the observed patterns in sialic acid biology genes to simulated sequences of the same length under a model of neutral evolution that takes into account human demographic history. We found that the patterns of genetic variation of most sialic acid biology genes did not significantly deviate from neutral expectations and were not significantly different among genes belonging to different functional categories. Those few sialic acid biology genes that

  7. The Long-Term Effectiveness of a Selective, Personality-Targeted Prevention Program in Reducing Alcohol Use and Related Harms: A Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newton, Nicola C.; Conrod, Patricia J.; Slade, Tim; Carragher, Natacha; Champion, Katrina E.; Barrett, Emma L.; Kelly, Erin V.; Nair, Natasha K.; Stapinski, Lexine; Teesson, Maree

    2016-01-01

    Background: This study investigated the long-term effectiveness of Preventure, a selective personality-targeted prevention program, in reducing the uptake of alcohol, harmful use of alcohol, and alcohol-related harms over a 3-year period. Methods: A cluster randomized controlled trial was conducted to assess the effectiveness of Preventure.…

  8. Robust Selectivity for Faces in the Human Amygdala in the Absence of Expressions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mende-Siedlecki, Peter; Verosky, Sara C.; Turk-Browne, Nicholas B.; Todorov, Alexander

    2014-01-01

    There is a well-established posterior network of cortical regions that plays a central role in face processing and that has been investigated extensively. In contrast, although responsive to faces, the amygdala is not considered a core face-selective region, and its face selectivity has never been a topic of systematic research in human neuroimaging studies. Here, we conducted a large-scale group analysis of fMRI data from 215 participants. We replicated the posterior network observed in prior studies but found equally robust and reliable responses to faces in the amygdala. These responses were detectable in most individual participants, but they were also highly sensitive to the initial statistical threshold and habituated more rapidly than the responses in posterior face-selective regions. A multivariate analysis showed that the pattern of responses to faces across voxels in the amygdala had high reliability over time. Finally, functional connectivity analyses showed stronger coupling between the amygdala and posterior face-selective regions during the perception of faces than during the perception of control visual categories. These findings suggest that the amygdala should be considered a core face-selective region. PMID:23984945

  9. Selection of suitable hand gestures for reliable myoelectric human computer interface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro, Maria Claudia F; Arjunan, Sridhar P; Kumar, Dinesh K

    2015-04-09

    Myoelectric controlled prosthetic hand requires machine based identification of hand gestures using surface electromyogram (sEMG) recorded from the forearm muscles. This study has observed that a sub-set of the hand gestures have to be selected for an accurate automated hand gesture recognition, and reports a method to select these gestures to maximize the sensitivity and specificity. Experiments were conducted where sEMG was recorded from the muscles of the forearm while subjects performed hand gestures and then was classified off-line. The performances of ten gestures were ranked using the proposed Positive-Negative Performance Measurement Index (PNM), generated by a series of confusion matrices. When using all the ten gestures, the sensitivity and specificity was 80.0% and 97.8%. After ranking the gestures using the PNM, six gestures were selected and these gave sensitivity and specificity greater than 95% (96.5% and 99.3%); Hand open, Hand close, Little finger flexion, Ring finger flexion, Middle finger flexion and Thumb flexion. This work has shown that reliable myoelectric based human computer interface systems require careful selection of the gestures that have to be recognized and without such selection, the reliability is poor.

  10. Different Levels of DNA Methylation Detected in Human Sperms after Morphological Selection Using High Magnification Microscopy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nino Guy Cassuto

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. To analyze DNA methylation levels between two groups of spermatozoa taken from the same sample, following morphological selection by high magnification (HM at 6100x microscopy. A prospective study was conducted and studied 876 spermatozoa from 10 randomly selected men. Sperm morphology was characterized at HM according to criteria previously established. High-scoring Score 6 and low-scoring Score 0 sperm were selected. Sperm DNA methylation level was assessed using an immunoassay method targeting 5-methylcytosine residues by fluorescence microscopy with imaging analysis system to detect DNA methylation in single spermatozoon. Results. In total, 448 S6 spermatozoa and 428 S0 spermatozoa were analyzed. A strong relationship was found between sperm DNA methylation levels and sperm morphology observed at HM. Sperm DNA methylation level in the S6 group was significantly lower compared with that in the S0 group (p<10-6, OR = 2.4; and p<0.001, as determined using the Wilcoxon test. Conclusion. Differences in DNA methylation levels are associated with sperm morphology variations as observed at HM, which allows spermatozoa with abnormal levels to be discarded and ultimately decrease birth defects, malformations, and epigenetic diseases that may be transmitted from sperm to offspring in ICSI.

  11. Human Occipital and Parietal GABA Selectively Influence Visual Perception of Orientation and Size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Chen; Sandberg, Kristian; Andersen, Lau Møller; Blicher, Jakob Udby; Rees, Geraint

    2017-09-13

    GABA is the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in human brain. The level of GABA varies substantially across individuals, and this variability is associated with interindividual differences in visual perception. However, it remains unclear whether the association between GABA level and visual perception reflects a general influence of visual inhibition or whether the GABA levels of different cortical regions selectively influence perception of different visual features. To address this, we studied how the GABA levels of parietal and occipital cortices related to interindividual differences in size, orientation, and brightness perception. We used visual contextual illusion as a perceptual assay since the illusion dissociates perceptual content from stimulus content and the magnitude of the illusion reflects the effect of visual inhibition. Across individuals, we observed selective correlations between the level of GABA and the magnitude of contextual illusion. Specifically, parietal GABA level correlated with size illusion magnitude but not with orientation or brightness illusion magnitude; in contrast, occipital GABA level correlated with orientation illusion magnitude but not with size or brightness illusion magnitude. Our findings reveal a region- and feature-dependent influence of GABA level on human visual perception. Parietal and occipital cortices contain, respectively, topographic maps of size and orientation preference in which neural responses to stimulus sizes and stimulus orientations are modulated by intraregional lateral connections. We propose that these lateral connections may underlie the selective influence of GABA on visual perception. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT GABA, the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in human visual system, varies substantially across individuals. This interindividual variability in GABA level is linked to interindividual differences in many aspects of visual perception. However, the widespread influence of GABA raises the

  12. Human Occipital and Parietal GABA Selectively Influence Visual Perception of Orientation and Size

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, Lau Møller; Blicher, Jakob Udby

    2017-01-01

    GABA is the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in human brain. The level of GABA varies substantially across individuals, and this variability is associated with interindividual differences in visual perception. However, it remains unclear whether the association between GABA level and visual perception reflects a general influence of visual inhibition or whether the GABA levels of different cortical regions selectively influence perception of different visual features. To address this, we studied how the GABA levels of parietal and occipital cortices related to interindividual differences in size, orientation, and brightness perception. We used visual contextual illusion as a perceptual assay since the illusion dissociates perceptual content from stimulus content and the magnitude of the illusion reflects the effect of visual inhibition. Across individuals, we observed selective correlations between the level of GABA and the magnitude of contextual illusion. Specifically, parietal GABA level correlated with size illusion magnitude but not with orientation or brightness illusion magnitude; in contrast, occipital GABA level correlated with orientation illusion magnitude but not with size or brightness illusion magnitude. Our findings reveal a region- and feature-dependent influence of GABA level on human visual perception. Parietal and occipital cortices contain, respectively, topographic maps of size and orientation preference in which neural responses to stimulus sizes and stimulus orientations are modulated by intraregional lateral connections. We propose that these lateral connections may underlie the selective influence of GABA on visual perception. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT GABA, the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in human visual system, varies substantially across individuals. This interindividual variability in GABA level is linked to interindividual differences in many aspects of visual perception. However, the widespread influence of GABA raises the

  13. Randomized Comparison of Two Vaginal Self-Sampling Methods for Human Papillomavirus Detection: Dry Swab versus FTA Cartridge

    OpenAIRE

    Catarino, Rosa; Vassilakos, Pierre; Bilancioni, Aline; Vanden Eynde, Mathieu; Meyer-Hamme, Ulrike; Menoud, Pierre-Alain; Guerry, Fr?d?ric; Petignat, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    Background Human papillomavirus (HPV) self-sampling (self-HPV) is valuable in cervical cancer screening. HPV testing is usually performed on physician-collected cervical smears stored in liquid-based medium. Dry filters and swabs are an alternative. We evaluated the adequacy of self-HPV using two dry storage and transport devices, the FTA cartridge and swab. Methods A total of 130 women performed two consecutive self-HPV samples. Randomization determined which of the two tests was performed f...

  14. Tuning In to Sound: Frequency-Selective Attentional Filter in Human Primary Auditory Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Da Costa, Sandra; van der Zwaag, Wietske; Miller, Lee M.; Clarke, Stephanie

    2013-01-01

    Cocktail parties, busy streets, and other noisy environments pose a difficult challenge to the auditory system: how to focus attention on selected sounds while ignoring others? Neurons of primary auditory cortex, many of which are sharply tuned to sound frequency, could help solve this problem by filtering selected sound information based on frequency-content. To investigate whether this occurs, we used high-resolution fMRI at 7 tesla to map the fine-scale frequency-tuning (1.5 mm isotropic resolution) of primary auditory areas A1 and R in six human participants. Then, in a selective attention experiment, participants heard low (250 Hz)- and high (4000 Hz)-frequency streams of tones presented at the same time (dual-stream) and were instructed to focus attention onto one stream versus the other, switching back and forth every 30 s. Attention to low-frequency tones enhanced neural responses within low-frequency-tuned voxels relative to high, and when attention switched the pattern quickly reversed. Thus, like a radio, human primary auditory cortex is able to tune into attended frequency channels and can switch channels on demand. PMID:23365225

  15. Agape as the Quintessence of Human Existence In Mitch Albom’s Selected Novels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dr. Maria Luisa A. Valdez

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available This study generally aimed to analyze the doctrine of agape as the quintessence of human existence in Mitch Albom’s selected novels and their implications on noted Filipino values. This paper employed the qualitative philosophical method of research in analyzing the tenets of agape in the representative literary works chosen. This involved the science of textual criticism and hermeneutics supported by the researcher’s analysis and insights with reference to the content of the texts to bring about the philosophical treatment of the identified works. The results of analysis and interpretation revealed that the signification of agape in Mitch Albom’s selected novels defines the deep philosophical meaning of the quintessence of human existence; Albom is one of the thinkers who philosophizes that the essence of being is agape and the self cannot genuinely encounter reality unless man assumes the existential attitude of love as it encompasses truth, freedom, peace and death; the spiritual manifestations of human existence with reference to the foregoing themes were unveiled through the author’s use of some literary devices; and Albom’s writings can challenge and inspire the Filipinos to change the way they think and review their values through the tenets of literature supplied by the re-examined contemporary novelist and his commitment to life here and thereafter.

  16. A General Model of Negative Frequency Dependent Selection Explains Global Patterns of Human ABO Polymorphism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando A Villanea

    Full Text Available The ABO locus in humans is characterized by elevated heterozygosity and very similar allele frequencies among populations scattered across the globe. Using knowledge of ABO protein function, we generated a simple model of asymmetric negative frequency dependent selection and genetic drift to explain the maintenance of ABO polymorphism and its loss in human populations. In our models, regardless of the strength of selection, models with large effective population sizes result in ABO allele frequencies that closely match those observed in most continental populations. Populations must be moderately small to fall out of equilibrium and lose either the A or B allele (N(e ≤ 50 and much smaller (N(e ≤ 25 for the complete loss of diversity, which nearly always involved the fixation of the O allele. A pattern of low heterozygosity at the ABO locus where loss of polymorphism occurs in our model is consistent with small populations, such as Native American populations. This study provides a general evolutionary model to explain the observed global patterns of polymorphism at the ABO locus and the pattern of allele loss in small populations. Moreover, these results inform the range of population sizes associated with the recent human colonization of the Americas.

  17. An FDA oncology analysis of CD3 bispecific constructs and first-in-human dose selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saber, Haleh; Del Valle, Pedro; Ricks, Tiffany K; Leighton, John K

    2017-11-01

    We retrospectively examined the nonclinical studies conducted with 17 CD3 bispecific constructs in support of first-in-human (FIH) trials in oncology. We also collected information on the design of dose-finding clinical trials. Sponsors have used different MABEL approaches for FIH dose selection. To better assess acceptable approaches, FIH doses were computed from nonclinical studies and compared to the maximum tolerated doses (MTDs) in patients, to the highest human doses (HHDs) when an MTD was not identified, or to the recommended human dose (RHD) for blinatumomab. We concluded that approaches based on receptor occupancy, highest non-severely toxic dose, or no-observed adverse effect level are not acceptable for selecting the FIH dose as they resulted in doses close to or above the MTDs, HHDs, or the RHD. A FIH dose corresponding to 10%-30% pharmacologic activity (PA) was an acceptable approach. A FIH dose corresponding to 50% PA was acceptable for all except one construct, potentially due to its biological or structural properties. The most common toxicities in animals and patients were those related to cytokine release. Doses were better tolerated when intra-animal or intra-patient dose escalation was used. Exposing naïve patients to an MTD achieved with intra-patient dose escalation design may be unsafe. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  18. Variation of mutational burden in healthy human tissues suggests non-random strand segregation and allows measuring somatic mutation rates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werner, Benjamin; Sottoriva, Andrea

    2018-06-01

    The immortal strand hypothesis poses that stem cells could produce differentiated progeny while conserving the original template strand, thus avoiding accumulating somatic mutations. However, quantitating the extent of non-random DNA strand segregation in human stem cells remains difficult in vivo. Here we show that the change of the mean and variance of the mutational burden with age in healthy human tissues allows estimating strand segregation probabilities and somatic mutation rates. We analysed deep sequencing data from healthy human colon, small intestine, liver, skin and brain. We found highly effective non-random DNA strand segregation in all adult tissues (mean strand segregation probability: 0.98, standard error bounds (0.97,0.99)). In contrast, non-random strand segregation efficiency is reduced to 0.87 (0.78,0.88) in neural tissue during early development, suggesting stem cell pool expansions due to symmetric self-renewal. Healthy somatic mutation rates differed across tissue types, ranging from 3.5 × 10-9/bp/division in small intestine to 1.6 × 10-7/bp/division in skin.

  19. Variation of mutational burden in healthy human tissues suggests non-random strand segregation and allows measuring somatic mutation rates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Werner

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available The immortal strand hypothesis poses that stem cells could produce differentiated progeny while conserving the original template strand, thus avoiding accumulating somatic mutations. However, quantitating the extent of non-random DNA strand segregation in human stem cells remains difficult in vivo. Here we show that the change of the mean and variance of the mutational burden with age in healthy human tissues allows estimating strand segregation probabilities and somatic mutation rates. We analysed deep sequencing data from healthy human colon, small intestine, liver, skin and brain. We found highly effective non-random DNA strand segregation in all adult tissues (mean strand segregation probability: 0.98, standard error bounds (0.97,0.99. In contrast, non-random strand segregation efficiency is reduced to 0.87 (0.78,0.88 in neural tissue during early development, suggesting stem cell pool expansions due to symmetric self-renewal. Healthy somatic mutation rates differed across tissue types, ranging from 3.5 × 10-9/bp/division in small intestine to 1.6 × 10-7/bp/division in skin.

  20. Evaluation of Randomly Selected Completed Medical Records Sheets in Teaching Hospitals of Jahrom University of Medical Sciences, 2009

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Parsa Mahjob

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Background and objective: Medical record documentation, often use to protect the patients legal rights, also providing information for medical researchers, general studies, education of health care staff and qualitative surveys is used. There is a need to control the amount of data entered in the medical record sheets of patients, considering the completion of these sheets is often carried out after completion of service delivery to the patients. Therefore, in this study the prevalence of completeness of medical history, operation reports, and physician order sheets by different documentaries in Jahrom teaching hospitals during year 2009 was analyzed. Methods and Materials: In this descriptive / retrospective study, the 400 medical record sheets of the patients from two teaching hospitals affiliated to Jahrom medical university was randomly selected. The tool of data collection was a checklist based on the content of medical history sheet, operation report and physician order sheets. The data were analyzed by SPSS (Version10 software and Microsoft Office Excel 2003. Results: Average of personal (Demography data entered in medical history, physician order and operation report sheets which is done by department's secretaries were 32.9, 35.8 and 40.18 percent. Average of clinical data entered by physician in medical history sheet is 38 percent. Surgical data entered by the surgeon in operation report sheet was 94.77 percent. Average of data entered by operation room's nurse in operation report sheet was 36.78 percent; Average of physician order data in physician order sheet entered by physician was 99.3 percent. Conclusion: According to this study, the rate of completed record papers reviewed by documentary in Jahrom teaching hospitals were not desirable and in some cases were very weak and incomplete. This deficiency was due to different reason such as medical record documentaries negligence, lack of adequate education for documentaries, High work

  1. Water chemistry in 179 randomly selected Swedish headwater streams related to forest production, clear-felling and climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Löfgren, Stefan; Fröberg, Mats; Yu, Jun; Nisell, Jakob; Ranneby, Bo

    2014-12-01

    From a policy perspective, it is important to understand forestry effects on surface waters from a landscape perspective. The EU Water Framework Directive demands remedial actions if not achieving good ecological status. In Sweden, 44 % of the surface water bodies have moderate ecological status or worse. Many of these drain catchments with a mosaic of managed forests. It is important for the forestry sector and water authorities to be able to identify where, in the forested landscape, special precautions are necessary. The aim of this study was to quantify the relations between forestry parameters and headwater stream concentrations of nutrients, organic matter and acid-base chemistry. The results are put into the context of regional climate, sulphur and nitrogen deposition, as well as marine influences. Water chemistry was measured in 179 randomly selected headwater streams from two regions in southwest and central Sweden, corresponding to 10 % of the Swedish land area. Forest status was determined from satellite images and Swedish National Forest Inventory data using the probabilistic classifier method, which was used to model stream water chemistry with Bayesian model averaging. The results indicate that concentrations of e.g. nitrogen, phosphorus and organic matter are related to factors associated with forest production but that it is not forestry per se that causes the excess losses. Instead, factors simultaneously affecting forest production and stream water chemistry, such as climate, extensive soil pools and nitrogen deposition, are the most likely candidates The relationships with clear-felled and wetland areas are likely to be direct effects.

  2. Effects of Infant Formula With Human Milk Oligosaccharides on Growth and Morbidity: A Randomized Multicenter Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puccio, Giuseppe; Alliet, Philippe; Cajozzo, Cinzia; Janssens, Elke; Corsello, Giovanni; Sprenger, Norbert; Wernimont, Susan; Egli, Delphine; Gosoniu, Laura; Steenhout, Philippe

    2017-04-01

    The aim of the study was to evaluate the effects of infant formula supplemented with 2 human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs) on infant growth, tolerance, and morbidity. Healthy infants, 0 to 14 days old, were randomized to an intact-protein, cow's milk-based infant formula (control, n = 87) or the same formula with 1.0 g/L 2'fucosyllactose (2'FL) and 0.5 g/L lacto-N-neotetraose (LNnT) (test, n = 88) from enrollment to 6 months; all infants received standard follow-up formula without HMOs from 6 to 12 months. Primary endpoint was weight gain through 4 months. Secondary endpoints included additional anthropometric measures, gastrointestinal tolerance, behavioral patterns, and morbidity through age 12 months. Weight gain was similar in both groups (mean difference [95% confidence interval] test vs control: -0.30 [-1.94, 1.34] g/day; lower bound of 95% confidence interval was above noninferiority margin [-3 g/day]). Digestive symptoms and behavioral patterns were similar between groups; exceptions included softer stool (P = 0.021) and fewer nighttime wake-ups (P = 0.036) in the test group at 2 months. Infants receiving test (vs control) had significantly fewer parental reports (P = 0.004-0.047) of bronchitis through 4 (2.3% vs 12.6%), 6 (6.8% vs 21.8%), and 12 months (10.2% vs 27.6%); lower respiratory tract infection (adverse event cluster) through 12 months (19.3% vs 34.5%); antipyretics use through 4 months (15.9% vs 29.9%); and antibiotics use through 6 (34.1% vs 49.4%) and 12 months (42.0% vs 60.9%). Infant formula with 2'FL and LNnT is safe, well-tolerated, and supports age-appropriate growth. Secondary outcome findings showing associations between consuming HMO-supplemented formula and lower parent-reported morbidity (particularly bronchitis) and medication use (antipyretics and antibiotics) warrant confirmation in future studies.

  3. Complex and changing patterns of natural selection explain the evolution of the human hip.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grabowski, Mark; Roseman, Charles C

    2015-08-01

    Causal explanations for the dramatic changes that occurred during the evolution of the human hip focus largely on selection for bipedal function and locomotor efficiency. These hypotheses rest on two critical assumptions. The first-that these anatomical changes served functional roles in bipedalism-has been supported in numerous analyses showing how postcranial changes likely affected locomotion. The second-that morphological changes that did play functional roles in bipedalism were the result of selection for that behavior-has not been previously explored and represents a major gap in our understanding of hominin hip evolution. Here we use evolutionary quantitative genetic models to test the hypothesis that strong directional selection on many individual aspects of morphology was responsible for the large differences observed across a sample of fossil hominin hips spanning the Plio-Pleistocene. Our approach uses covariance among traits and the differences between relatively complete fossils to estimate the net selection pressures that drove the major transitions in hominin hip evolution. Our findings show a complex and changing pattern of natural selection drove hominin hip evolution, and that many, but not all, traits hypothesized to play functional roles in bipedalism evolved as a direct result of natural selection. While the rate of evolutionary change for all transitions explored here does not exceed the amount expected if evolution was occurring solely through neutral processes, it was far above rates of evolution for morphological traits in other mammalian groups. Given that stasis is the norm in the mammalian fossil record, our results suggest that large shifts in the adaptive landscape drove hominin evolution. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. LuIII parvovirus selectively and efficiently targets, replicates in, and kills human glioma cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paglino, Justin C; Ozduman, Koray; van den Pol, Anthony N

    2012-07-01

    Because productive infection by parvoviruses requires cell division and is enhanced by oncogenic transformation, some parvoviruses may have potential utility in killing cancer cells. To identify the parvovirus(es) with the optimal oncolytic effect against human glioblastomas, we screened 12 parvoviruses at a high multiplicity of infection (MOI). MVMi, MVMc, MVM-G17, tumor virus X (TVX), canine parvovirus (CPV), porcine parvovirus (PPV), rat parvovirus 1A (RPV1A), and H-3 were relatively ineffective. The four viruses with the greatest oncolytic activity, LuIII, H-1, MVMp, and MVM-G52, were tested for the ability, at a low MOI, to progressively infect the culture over time, causing cell death at a rate higher than that of cell proliferation. LuIII alone was effective in all five human glioblastomas tested. H-1 progressively infected only two of five; MVMp and MVM-G52 were ineffective in all five. To investigate the underlying mechanism of LuIII's phenotype, we used recombinant parvoviruses with the LuIII capsid replacing the MVMp capsid or with molecular alteration of the P4 promoter. The LuIII capsid enhanced efficient replication and oncolysis in MO59J gliomas cells; other gliomas tested required the entire LuIII genome to exhibit enhanced infection. LuIII selectively infected glioma cells over normal glial cells in vitro. In mouse models, human glioblastoma xenografts were selectively infected by LuIII when administered intratumorally; LuIII reduced tumor growth by 75%. LuIII also had the capacity to selectively infect subcutaneous or intracranial gliomas after intravenous inoculation. Intravenous or intracranial LuIII caused no adverse effects. Intracranial LuIII caused no infection of mature mouse neurons or glia in vivo but showed a modest infection of developing neurons.

  5. Antiproliferative Effects of Selected Chemotherapeutics in Human Ovarian Cancer Cell Line A2780

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kateřina Caltová

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of our study was to determine the effect of selected cytostatics on a human ovarian cancer cell line A2780 as a model system for ovarian cancer treatment. This cell line is considered cisplatin-sensitive. Panel of tested cytostatics included cisplatin, paclitaxel, carboplatin, gemcitabine, topotecan and etoposide. These cytostatics have a different mechanism of action. To evaluate cytotoxic potential of the tested compounds, the methods measuring various toxicological endpoints were employed including morphological studies, MTT assay, dynamic monitoring of cell proliferation with xCELLigence, cell cycle analysis, caspase 3 activity and expression of proteins involved in cell cycle regulation and cell death. The A270 cell line showed different sensitivity towards the selected cytostatics, the highest cytotoxic effect was associated with paclitaxel and topotecan.

  6. Sexual selection by male choice in monogamous and polygynous human populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ihara, Y; Aoki, K

    1999-02-01

    The theoretical possibility of coevolution of a viability-reducing female physical trait and a male mating preference for that trait by Fisherian sexual selection in monogamous and polygynous populations is demonstrated using two-locus haploid models. It is assumed that there is dichotomous variation in male resources, resource-rich males have a wider choice among females than resource-poor males, and a female has greater reproductive success when mated with a resource-rich male than a resource-poor one. Under these assumptions, we find that sexual selection operates effectively when female reproductive success is strongly dependent on male resource, the proportion of females that mate with resource-rich males is neither small nor large, the degree of polygyny is low, and resources are inherited from father to son. We suggest that some human female physical traits may have evolved by sexual selection through male choice. The evolution of skin color by sexual selection is discussed as an example. Copyright 1999 Academic Press.

  7. Selective effects of alpha interferon on human T-lymphocyte subsets during mixed lymphocyte cultures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hokland, M; Hokland, P; Heron, I

    1983-01-01

    Mixed lymphocyte reaction (MLR) cultures of human lymphocyte subsets with or without the addition of physiological doses of human alpha interferon (IFN-alpha) were compared with respect to surface marker phenotypes and proliferative capacities of the responder cells. A selective depression on the T...... T4 cells and decreased numbers of T4 cells harvested from IFN MLRs (days 5-6 of culture). In contrast, it was shown that the T8 (cytotoxic/suppressor) subset in MLRs was either not affected or slightly stimulated by the addition of IFN. The depression of the T4 cells by IFN was accompanied...... by a decrease in the number of activated T cells expressing Ia antigens. On the other hand, IFN MLRs contained greater numbers of cells expressing the T10 differentiation antigen. In experiments with purified T-cell subsets the IFN effect was exerted directly on the T4 cells and not mediated by either T8...

  8. Development and human resources in the Islamic world: a study of selected countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duza, M B

    1987-01-01

    "The present paper attempts to provide an analytical profile of development and human resources in [12] selected [Islamic] countries." The countries--Bangladesh, Somalia, Pakistan, Indonesia, Egypt, Turkey, Malaysia, Algeria, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and United Arab Emirates--vary in income levels from low to high and in population size from 1 million to 159 million. Using data from the World Bank and the Population Council, comparisons are made on the basis of mortality and fertility levels, family size, income, urbanization, labor force size and growth, education, nutrition, and health. Governmental policy changes and future directions are discussed. excerpt

  9. Sexual Selection of Human Cooperative Behaviour: An Experimental Study in Rural Senegal

    OpenAIRE

    Tognetti, Arnaud; Berticat, Claire; Raymond, Michel; Faurie, Charlotte

    2012-01-01

    Human cooperation in large groups and between non-kin individuals remains a Darwinian puzzle. Investigations into whether and how sexual selection is involved in the evolution of cooperation represent a new and important research direction. Here, 69 groups of four men or four women recruited from a rural population in Senegal played a sequential public-good game in the presence of out-group observers, either of the same sex or of the opposite sex. At the end of the game, participants could do...

  10. How learning might strengthen existing visual object representations in human object-selective cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brants, Marijke; Bulthé, Jessica; Daniels, Nicky; Wagemans, Johan; Op de Beeck, Hans P

    2016-02-15

    Visual object perception is an important function in primates which can be fine-tuned by experience, even in adults. Which factors determine the regions and the neurons that are modified by learning is still unclear. Recently, it was proposed that the exact cortical focus and distribution of learning effects might depend upon the pre-learning mapping of relevant functional properties and how this mapping determines the informativeness of neural units for the stimuli and the task to be learned. From this hypothesis we would expect that visual experience would strengthen the pre-learning distributed functional map of the relevant distinctive object properties. Here we present a first test of this prediction in twelve human subjects who were trained in object categorization and differentiation, preceded and followed by a functional magnetic resonance imaging session. Specifically, training increased the distributed multi-voxel pattern information for trained object distinctions in object-selective cortex, resulting in a generalization from pre-training multi-voxel activity patterns to after-training activity patterns. Simulations show that the increased selectivity combined with the inter-session generalization is consistent with a training-induced strengthening of a pre-existing selectivity map. No training-related neural changes were detected in other regions. In sum, training to categorize or individuate objects strengthened pre-existing representations in human object-selective cortex, providing a first indication that the neuroanatomical distribution of learning effects depends upon the pre-learning mapping of visual object properties. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Selective ex-vivo photothermal ablation of human pancreatic cancer with albumin functionalized multiwalled carbon nanotubes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mocan L

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Lucian Mocan1, Flaviu A Tabaran2, Teodora Mocan1, Constantin Bele3, Anamaria Ioana Orza1, Ciprian Lucan4, Rares Stiufiuc1, Ioana Manaila1, Ferencz Iulia1, Iancu Dana1, Florin Zaharie1, Gelu Osian1, Liviu Vlad1, Cornel Iancu11Department of Nanomedicine, “Iuliu Hatieganu” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Cluj-Napoca, Romania; 2Department of Pathology, University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine, Cluj-Napoca, Romania; 3Department of Biochemistry, University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine, Cluj-Napoca, Romania; 4Clinical Institute of Urology and Renal Transplantation, Cluj-Napoca, RomaniaAbstract: The process of laser-mediated ablation of cancer cells marked with biofunctionalized carbon nanotubes is frequently called “nanophotothermolysis”. We herein present a method of selective nanophotothermolisys of pancreatic cancer (PC using multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs functionalized with human serum albumin (HSA. With the purpose of testing the therapeutic value of these nanobioconjugates, we have developed an ex-vivo experimental platform. Surgically resected specimens from patients with PC were preserved in a cold medium and kept alive via intra-arterial perfusion. Additionally, the HSA-MWCNTs have been intra-arterially administered in the greater pancreatic artery under ultrasound guidance. Confocal and transmission electron microscopy combined with immunohistochemical staining have confirmed the selective accumulation of HSA-MWCNTs inside the human PC tissue. The external laser irradiation of the specimen has significantly produced extensive necrosis of the malign tissue after the intra-arterial administration of HSA-MWCNTs, without any harmful effects on the surrounding healthy parenchyma. We have obtained a selective photothermal ablation of the malign tissue based on the selective internalization of MWCNTs with HSA cargo inside the pancreatic adenocarcinoma after the ex-vivo intra

  12. Complex signatures of selection for the melanogenic loci TYR, TYRP1 and DCT in humans

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    Boyano María

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The observed correlation between ultraviolet light incidence and skin color, together with the geographical apportionment of skin reflectance among human populations, suggests an adaptive value for the pigmentation of the human skin. We have used Affymetrix U133a v2.0 gene expression microarrays to investigate the expression profiles of a total of 9 melanocyte cell lines (5 from lightly pigmented donors and 4 from darkly pigmented donors plus their respective unirradiated controls. In order to reveal signatures of selection in loci with a bearing on skin pigmentation in humans, we have resequenced between 4 to 5 kb of the proximal regulatory regions of three of the most differently expressed genes, in the expectation that variation at regulatory regions might account for intraespecific morphological diversity, as suggested elsewhere. Results Contrary to our expectations, expression profiles did not cluster the cells into unirradiated versus irradiated melanocytes, or into lightly pigmented versus darkly pigmented melanocytes. Instead, expression profiles correlated with the presence of Bovine Pituitary Extract (known to contain α-MSH in the media. This allowed us to differentiate between melanocytes that are synthesizing melanin and those that are not. TYR, TYRP1 and DCT were among the five most differently expressed genes between these two groups. Population genetic analyses of sequence haplotypes of the proximal regulatory flanking-regions included Tajima's D, HEW and DHEW neutrality tests analysis. These were complemented with EHH tests (among others in which the significance was obtained by a novel approach using extensive simulations under the coalescent model with recombination. We observe strong evidence for positive selection for TYRP1 alleles in Africans and for DCT and TYRP1 in Asians. However, the overall picture reflects a complex pattern of selection, which might include overdominance for DCT in Europeans

  13. Spotting Fruit versus Picking Fruit as the Selective Advantage of Human Colour Vision

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    Aline Bompas

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The spatiochromatic properties of the red–green dimension of human colour vision appear to be optimized for picking fruit in leaves at about arms' reach. However, other evidence suggests that the task of spotting fruit from a distance might be more important. This discrepancy may arise because the task a system (e.g. human trichromacy is best at is not necessarily the same task where the largest advantage occurs over the evolutionary alternatives (dichromacy or anomalous trichromacy. We tested human dichromats, anomalous trichromats and “normal” trichromats in a naturalistic visual search task in which they had to find fruit pieces in a bush at 1, 4, 8 or 12 m viewing distance. We found that the largest advantage (in terms of either performance ratio or performance difference of normal trichromacy over both types of colour deficiency was for the largest viewing distance. We infer that in the evolution of human colour vision, spotting fruit from a distance was a more important selective advantage than picking fruit at arms' reach.

  14. Selection of drug resistant mutants from random library of Plasmodium falciparum dihydrofolate reductase in Plasmodium berghei model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuthavong Yongyuth

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The prevalence of drug resistance amongst the human malaria Plasmodium species has most commonly been associated with genomic mutation within the parasites. This phenomenon necessitates evolutionary predictive studies of possible resistance mutations, which may occur when a new drug is introduced. Therefore, identification of possible new Plasmodium falciparum dihydrofolate reductase (PfDHFR mutants that confer resistance to antifolate drugs is essential in the process of antifolate anti-malarial drug development. Methods A system to identify mutations in Pfdhfr gene that confer antifolate drug resistance using an animal Plasmodium parasite model was developed. By using error-prone PCR and Plasmodium transfection technologies, libraries of Pfdhfr mutant were generated and then episomally transfected to Plasmodium berghei parasites, from which pyrimethamine-resistant PfDHFR mutants were selected. Results The principal mutation found from this experiment was S108N, coincident with the first pyrimethamine-resistance mutation isolated from the field. A transgenic P. berghei, in which endogenous Pbdhfr allele was replaced with the mutant PfdhfrS108N, was generated and confirmed to have normal growth rate comparing to parental non-transgenic parasite and also confer resistance to pyrimethamine. Conclusion This study demonstrated the power of the transgenic P. berghei system to predict drug-resistant Pfdhfr mutations in an in vivo parasite/host setting. The system could be utilized for identification of possible novel drug-resistant mutants that could arise against new antifolate compounds and for prediction the evolution of resistance mutations.

  15. Sex, kings and serial killers and other group-selected human traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowles, J T

    2000-06-01

    (Note: This unorthodox paper contains the first argument for heart disease being a programmed age change and promoted by the dramatic, post age-40 increases in the hormones FSH and hCG seen in some individuals.) A recent issue of Science suggests that the evolutionary purpose of sex is unknown. Surviving to adulthood implies a valuable gene combination which is destroyed by sexual recombination. This should be detrimental to offspring. PROPOSED: Sex is group-selected in prey to allow coalescence of beneficial, and disposal of detrimental, mutations in single individuals enabling rapid adaptation to novel predation. Group selection is a universal force driven by local inter-species (not intra-species) competition. Aging, metabolism, litter size, and fixed body size are directly linked. Sexual recombination and chromosomes destroy gene linkage and exist because mutations are usually detrimental, rarely positive, and occur in linked groups. In unevolving environments, sex is selected against and asexuality emerges. Periodic evolution of novel predators, like man, can explain the 'punctuated equilibria' fossil record. Genes inhibited by methylation or chromatin condensation, expressed at older ages in predation-minimized environments, allow for group selection. Stress increases mutation rates and beneficial mutation likelihood. Females select bigger, brighter, louder, or stronger males that can survive predator attention. Size approximates age and thus predator encounters; male traits represent predation-survival potential. Human male traits include, balding, acne, beard-length, wrinkling, graying, nose/ear growth. Progeria accelerates development of most male traits. Domination of groups by single males allows rapid predation-defense evolution: adolescent males are expelled, brave the wild, and expel another group's male to mate. If expelled and dominant males are culled by predation, males reaching puberty first will reproduce. Hormonal acceleration of puberty

  16. Random number generation and creativity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bains, William

    2008-01-01

    A previous paper suggested that humans can generate genuinely random numbers. I tested this hypothesis by repeating the experiment with a larger number of highly numerate subjects, asking them to call out a sequence of digits selected from 0 through 9. The resulting sequences were substantially non-random, with an excess of sequential pairs of numbers and a deficit of repeats of the same number, in line with previous literature. However, the previous literature suggests that humans generate random numbers with substantial conscious effort, and distractions which reduce that effort reduce the randomness of the numbers. I reduced my subjects' concentration by asking them to call out in another language, and with alcohol - neither affected the randomness of their responses. This suggests that the ability to generate random numbers is a 'basic' function of the human mind, even if those numbers are not mathematically 'random'. I hypothesise that there is a 'creativity' mechanism, while not truly random, provides novelty as part of the mind's defence against closed programming loops, and that testing for the effects seen here in people more or less familiar with numbers or with spontaneous creativity could identify more features of this process. It is possible that training to perform better at simple random generation tasks could help to increase creativity, through training people to reduce the conscious mind's suppression of the 'spontaneous', creative response to new questions.

  17. Spatial and simultaneous seroepidemiology of anti-Leishmania spp. antibodies in dog owners and their dogs from randomly selected households in a major city of southern Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benitez, Aline do Nascimento; Martins, Felippe Danyel Cardoso; Mareze, Marcelle; Nino, Beatriz de Souza Lima; Caldart, Eloiza Teles; Ferreira, Fernanda Pinto; Mitsuka-Breganó, Regina; Freire, Roberta Lemos; Galhardo, Juliana Arena; Martins, Camila Marinelli; Biondo, Alexander Welker; Navarro, Italmar Teodorico

    2018-06-01

    Although leishmaniasis has been described as a classic example of a zoonosis requiring a comprehensive approach for control, to date, no study has been conducted on the spatial distribution of simultaneous Leishmania spp. seroprevalence in dog owners and dogs from randomly selected households in urban settings. Accordingly, the present study aimed to simultaneously identify the seroprevalence, spatial distribution and associated factors of infection with Leishmania spp. in dog owners and their dogs in the city of Londrina, a county seat in southern Brazil with a population of half a million people and ranked 18th in population and 145th in the human development index (HDI) out of 5570 Brazilian cities. Overall, 564 households were surveyed and included 597 homeowners and their 729 dogs. Anti-Leishmania spp. antibodies were detected by ELISA in 9/597 (1.50%) dog owners and in 32/729 (4.38%) dogs, with significantly higher prevalence (p = 0.0042) in dogs. Spatial analysis revealed associations between seropositive dogs and households located up to 500 m from the local railway. No clusters were found for either owner or dog case distributions. In summary, the seroepidemiological and spatial results collectively show a lack of association of the factors for infection, and the results demonstrated higher exposure for dogs than their owners. However, railway areas may provide favorable conditions for the maintenance of infected phlebotomines, thereby causing infection in nearby domiciled dogs. In such an urban scenario, local sanitary barriers should be focused on the terrestrial routes of people and surrounding areas, particularly railways, via continuous vector surveillance and identification of phlebotomines infected by Leishmania spp. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  18. Human telomeric G-quadruplex formation and highly selective fluorescence detection of toxic strontium ions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qu, Konggang; Zhao, Chuanqi; Ren, Jinsong; Qu, Xiaogang

    2012-03-01

    Strontium ions play important roles in biological systems. The inhalation of strontium can cause severe respiratory difficulties, anaphylactic reaction and extreme tachycardia. Strontium can replace calcium in organisms, inhibit normal calcium absorption and induce strontium "rickets" in childhood. Thus, the development of sensitive and selective methods for the determination of trace amounts of Sr(2+) in aqueous media is of considerable importance for environmental and human health protection. A number of methodologies, such as X-ray energy dispersive spectrometry, inductively coupled argon plasma atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES), atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS) and instrumental thermal neutron activation analysis, have been reported. However, these methods are somewhat complex, costly, time consuming and, especially, need special instruments. Thus, the design of convenient and inexpensive approaches for the sensitive and selective detection of Sr(2+) with rapid, easy manipulation is in ever-increasing demand. To the best of our knowledge, using DNA conformational change to detect Sr(2+) has not yet been reported. Herein we utilized thiazole orange (TO) as a signal reporter to devise a simple Sr(2+) detection assay based on Sr(2+) induced human telomeric DNA conformational change in the presence of SWNTs. The limit of detection is 10 nM Sr(2+) (0.87 μg L(-1)), far below 4 mg L(-1), the U.S. Federal threshold in drinking water defined by the U.S. EPA.

  19. Genetic diversity and natural selection footprints of the glycine amidinotransferase gene in various human populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Asifullah; Tian, Lei; Zhang, Chao; Yuan, Kai; Xu, Shuhua

    2016-01-05

    The glycine amidinotransferase gene (GATM) plays a vital role in energy metabolism in muscle tissues and is associated with multiple clinically important phenotypes. However, the genetic diversity of the GATM gene remains poorly understood within and between human populations. Here we analyzed the 1,000 Genomes Project data through population genetics approaches and observed significant genetic diversity across the GATM gene among various continental human populations. We observed considerable variations in GATM allele frequencies and haplotype composition among different populations. Substantial genetic differences were observed between East Asian and European populations (FST = 0.56). In addition, the frequency of a distinct major GATM haplotype in these groups was congruent with population-wide diversity at this locus. Furthermore, we identified GATM as the top differentiated gene compared to the other statin drug response-associated genes. Composite multiple analyses identified signatures of positive selection at the GATM locus, which was estimated to have occurred around 850 generations ago in European populations. As GATM catalyzes the key step of creatine biosynthesis involved in energy metabolism, we speculate that the European prehistorical demographic transition from hunter-gatherer to farming cultures was the driving force of selection that fulfilled creatine-based metabolic requirement of the populations.

  20. In vitro assessment of antiproliferative action selectivity of dietary isothiocyanates for tumor versus normal human cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Konić-Ristić Aleksandra

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aim. Numerous epidemiological studies have shown beneficial effects of cruciferous vegetables consumption in cancer chemoprevention. Biologically active compounds of different Brassicaceae species with antitumor potential are isothiocyanates, present in the form of their precursors - glucosinolates. The aim of this study was to determine the selectivity of antiproliferative action of dietary isothiocyanates for malignant versus normal cells. Methods. Antiproliferative activity of three isothiocyanates abundant in human diet: sulforaphane, benzyl isothiocyanate (BITC and phenylethyl isothiocyanate, on human cervix carcinoma cell line - HeLa, melanoma cell line - Fem-x, and colon cancer cell line - LS 174, and on peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC, with or without mitogen, were determined by MTT colorimetric assay 72 h after their continuous action. Results. All investigated isothiocyanates inhibited the proliferation of HeLa, Fem-x and LS 174 cells. On all cell lines treated, BITC was the most potent inhibitor of cell proliferation with half-maximum inhibitory concentration (IC50 values of 5.04 mmoL m-3 on HeLa cells, 2.76 mmol m-3 on Fem-x, and 14.30 mmol m-3 on LS 174 cells. Antiproliferative effects on human PBMC were with higher IC50 than on malignant cells. Indexes of selectivity, calculated as a ratio between IC50 values obtained on PBMC and malignant cells, were between 1.12 and 16.57, with the highest values obtained for the action of BITC on melanoma Fem-x cells. Conclusion. Based on its antiproliferative effects on malignant cells, as well as the selectivity of the action to malignant vs normal cells, benzyl isothiocyanate can be considered as a promising candidate in cancer chemoprevention. In general, the safety of investigated compounds, in addition to their antitumor potential, should be considered as an important criterion in cancer chemoprevention. Screening of selectivity is a plausible approach to the evaluation

  1. Optimization of selective inversion recovery magnetization transfer imaging for macromolecular content mapping in the human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dortch, Richard D; Bagnato, Francesca; Gochberg, Daniel F; Gore, John C; Smith, Seth A

    2018-03-24

    To optimize a selective inversion recovery (SIR) sequence for macromolecular content mapping in the human brain at 3.0T. SIR is a quantitative method for measuring magnetization transfer (qMT) that uses a low-power, on-resonance inversion pulse. This results in a biexponential recovery of free water signal that can be sampled at various inversion/predelay times (t I/ t D ) to estimate a subset of qMT parameters, including the macromolecular-to-free pool-size-ratio (PSR), the R 1 of free water (R 1f ), and the rate of MT exchange (k mf ). The adoption of SIR has been limited by long acquisition times (≈4 min/slice). Here, we use Cramér-Rao lower bound theory and data reduction strategies to select optimal t I /t D combinations to reduce imaging times. The schemes were experimentally validated in phantoms, and tested in healthy volunteers (N = 4) and a multiple sclerosis patient. Two optimal sampling schemes were determined: (i) a 5-point scheme (k mf estimated) and (ii) a 4-point scheme (k mf assumed). In phantoms, the 5/4-point schemes yielded parameter estimates with similar SNRs as our previous 16-point scheme, but with 4.1/6.1-fold shorter scan times. Pair-wise comparisons between schemes did not detect significant differences for any scheme/parameter. In humans, parameter values were consistent with published values, and similar levels of precision were obtained from all schemes. Furthermore, fixing k mf reduced the sensitivity of PSR to partial-volume averaging, yielding more consistent estimates throughout the brain. qMT parameters can be robustly estimated in ≤1 min/slice (without independent measures of ΔB 0 , B1+, and T 1 ) when optimized t I -t D combinations are selected. © 2018 International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine.

  2. Convergence analysis for Latin-hypercube lattice-sample selection strategies for 3D correlated random hydraulic-conductivity fields

    OpenAIRE

    Simuta-Champo, R.; Herrera-Zamarrón, G. S.

    2010-01-01

    The Monte Carlo technique provides a natural method for evaluating uncertainties. The uncertainty is represented by a probability distribution or by related quantities such as statistical moments. When the groundwater flow and transport governing equations are solved and the hydraulic conductivity field is treated as a random spatial function, the hydraulic head, velocities and concentrations also become random spatial functions. When that is the case, for the stochastic simulation of groundw...

  3. Structure-Activity Relationships of Pentacyclic Triterpenoids as Potent and Selective Inhibitors against Human Carboxylesterase 1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li-Wei Zou

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Human carboxylesterase 1 (hCE1, one of the most important serine hydrolases distributed in liver and adipocytes, plays key roles in endobiotic homeostasis and xenobiotic metabolism. This study aimed to find potent and selective inhibitors against hCE1 from phytochemicals and their derivatives. To this end, a series of natural triterpenoids were collected and their inhibitory effects against human carboxylesterases (hCEs were assayed using D-Luciferin methyl ester (DME and 6,8-dichloro-9,9-dimethyl-7-oxo-7,9-dihydroacridin-2-yl benzoate (DDAB as specific optical substrate for hCE1, and hCE2, respectively. Following screening of a series of natural triterpenoids, oleanolic acid (OA, and ursolic acid (UA were found with strong inhibitory effects on hCE1 and relative high selectivity over hCE2. In order to get the highly selective and potent inhibitors of hCE1, a series of OA and UA derivatives were synthesized from OA and UA by chemical modifications including oxidation, reduction, esterification, and amidation. The inhibitory effects of these derivatives on hCEs were assayed and the structure-activity relationships of tested triterpenoids as hCE1 inhibitors were carefully investigated. The results demonstrated that the carbonyl group at the C-28 site is essential for hCE1 inhibition, the modifications of OA or UA at this site including esters, amides and alcohols are unbeneficial for hCE1 inhibition. In contrast, the structural modifications on OA and UA at other sites, such as converting the C-3 hydroxy group to 3-O-β-carboxypropionyl (compounds 20 and 22, led to a dramatically increase of the inhibitory effects against hCE1 and very high selectivity over hCE2. 3D-QSAR analysis of all tested triterpenoids including OA and UA derivatives provide new insights into the fine relationships linking between the inhibitory effects on hCE1 and the steric-electrostatic properties of triterpenoids. Furthermore, both inhibition kinetic analyses and docking

  4. Cortical drive of low-frequency oscillations in the human nucleus accumbens during action selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stenner, Max-Philipp; Litvak, Vladimir; Rutledge, Robb B; Zaehle, Tino; Schmitt, Friedhelm C; Voges, Jürgen; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Dolan, Raymond J

    2015-07-01

    The nucleus accumbens is thought to contribute to action selection by integrating behaviorally relevant information from multiple regions, including prefrontal cortex. Studies in rodents suggest that information flow to the nucleus accumbens may be regulated via task-dependent oscillatory coupling between regions. During instrumental behavior, local field potentials (LFP) in the rat nucleus accumbens and prefrontal cortex are coupled at delta frequencies (Gruber AJ, Hussain RJ, O'Donnell P. PLoS One 4: e5062, 2009), possibly mediating suppression of afferent input from other areas and thereby supporting cortical control (Calhoon GG, O'Donnell P. Neuron 78: 181-190, 2013). In this report, we demonstrate low-frequency cortico-accumbens coupling in humans, both at rest and during a decision-making task. We recorded LFP from the nucleus accumbens in six epilepsy patients who underwent implantation of deep brain stimulation electrodes. All patients showed significant coherence and phase-synchronization between LFP and surface EEG at delta and low theta frequencies. Although the direction of this coupling as indexed by Granger causality varied between subjects in the resting-state data, all patients showed a cortical drive of the nucleus accumbens during action selection in a decision-making task. In three patients this was accompanied by a significant coherence increase over baseline. Our results suggest that low-frequency cortico-accumbens coupling represents a highly conserved regulatory mechanism for action selection. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  5. New sorbent materials for selective extraction of cocaine and benzoylecgonine from human urine samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bujak, Renata; Gadzała-Kopciuch, Renata; Nowaczyk, Alicja; Raczak-Gutknecht, Joanna; Kordalewska, Marta; Struck-Lewicka, Wiktoria; Waszczuk-Jankowska, Małgorzata; Tomczak, Ewa; Kaliszan, Michał; Buszewski, Bogusław; Markuszewski, Michał J

    2016-02-20

    An increase in cocaine consumption has been observed in Europe during the last decade. Benzoylecgonine, as a main urinary metabolite of cocaine in human, is so far the most reliable marker of cocaine consumption. Determination of cocaine and its metabolite in complex biological samples as urine or blood, requires efficient and selective sample pretreatment. In this preliminary study, the newly synthesized sorbent materials were proposed for selective extraction of cocaine and benzoylecgonine from urine samples. Application of these sorbent media allowed to determine cocaine and benzoylecgonine in urine samples at the concentration level of 100ng/ml with good recovery values as 81.7%±6.6 and 73.8%±4.2, respectively. The newly synthesized materials provided efficient, inexpensive and selective extraction of both cocaine and benzoylecgonine from urine samples, which can consequently lead to an increase of the sensitivity of the current available screening diagnostic tests. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Feature Selection for Nonstationary Data: Application to Human Recognition Using Medical Biometrics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Komeili, Majid; Louis, Wael; Armanfard, Narges; Hatzinakos, Dimitrios

    2018-05-01

    Electrocardiogram (ECG) and transient evoked otoacoustic emission (TEOAE) are among the physiological signals that have attracted significant interest in biometric community due to their inherent robustness to replay and falsification attacks. However, they are time-dependent signals and this makes them hard to deal with in across-session human recognition scenario where only one session is available for enrollment. This paper presents a novel feature selection method to address this issue. It is based on an auxiliary dataset with multiple sessions where it selects a subset of features that are more persistent across different sessions. It uses local information in terms of sample margins while enforcing an across-session measure. This makes it a perfect fit for aforementioned biometric recognition problem. Comprehensive experiments on ECG and TEOAE variability due to time lapse and body posture are done. Performance of the proposed method is compared against seven state-of-the-art feature selection algorithms as well as another six approaches in the area of ECG and TEOAE biometric recognition. Experimental results demonstrate that the proposed method performs noticeably better than other algorithms.

  7. Selective attention modulates human auditory brainstem responses: relative contributions of frequency and spatial cues.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandre Lehmann

    Full Text Available Selective attention is the mechanism that allows focusing one's attention on a particular stimulus while filtering out a range of other stimuli, for instance, on a single conversation in a noisy room. Attending to one sound source rather than another changes activity in the human auditory cortex, but it is unclear whether attention to different acoustic features, such as voice pitch and speaker location, modulates subcortical activity. Studies using a dichotic listening paradigm indicated that auditory brainstem processing may be modulated by the direction of attention. We investigated whether endogenous selective attention to one of two speech signals affects amplitude and phase locking in auditory brainstem responses when the signals were either discriminable by frequency content alone, or by frequency content and spatial location. Frequency-following responses to the speech sounds were significantly modulated in both conditions. The modulation was specific to the task-relevant frequency band. The effect was stronger when both frequency and spatial information were available. Patterns of response were variable between participants, and were correlated with psychophysical discriminability of the stimuli, suggesting that the modulation was biologically relevant. Our results demonstrate that auditory brainstem responses are susceptible to efferent modulation related to behavioral goals. Furthermore they suggest that mechanisms of selective attention actively shape activity at early subcortical processing stages according to task relevance and based on frequency and spatial cues.

  8. Mechanisms of selective delivery of xanthophylls to retinal pigment epithelial cells by human lipoproteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Sara E; Harrison, Earl H

    2016-10-01

    The xanthophylls, lutein and zeaxanthin, are dietary carotenoids that selectively accumulate in the macula of the eye providing protection against age-related macular degeneration. To reach the macula, carotenoids cross the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Xanthophylls and β-carotene mostly associate with HDL and LDL, respectively. HDL binds to cells via a scavenger receptor class B1 (SR-B1)-dependent mechanism, while LDL binds via the LDL receptor. Using an in-vitro, human RPE cell model (ARPE-19), we studied the mechanisms of carotenoid uptake into the RPE by evaluating kinetics of cell uptake when delivered in serum or isolated LDL or HDL. For lutein and β-carotene, LDL delivery resulted in the highest rates and extents of uptake. In contrast, HDL was more effective in delivering zeaxanthin and meso-zeaxanthin leading to the highest rates and extents of uptake of all four carotenoids. Inhibitors of SR-B1 suppressed zeaxanthin delivery via HDL. Results show a selective HDL-mediated uptake of zeaxanthin and meso-zeaxanthin via SR-B1 and a LDL-mediated uptake of lutein. This demonstrates a plausible mechanism for the selective accumulation of zeaxanthin greater than lutein and xanthophylls over β-carotene in the retina. We found no evidence of xanthophyll metabolism to apocarotenoids or lutein conversion to meso-zeaxanthin. Copyright © 2016 by the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  9. Examining Psychokinesis: The Interaction of Human Intention with Random Number Generators--A Meta-Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosch, Holger; Steinkamp, Fiona; Boller, Emil

    2006-01-01

    Seance-room and other large-scale psychokinetic phenomena have fascinated humankind for decades. Experimental research has reduced these phenomena to attempts to influence (a) the fall of dice and, later, (b) the output of random number generators (RNGs). The meta-analysis combined 380 studies that assessed whether RNG output correlated with human…

  10. Random mutagenesis of human serine racemase reveals residues important for the enzymatic activity

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hoffman, Hillary Elizabeth; Jirásková, Jana; Zvelebil, M.; Konvalinka, Jan

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 75, č. 1 (2010), s. 59-79 ISSN 0010-0765 R&D Projects: GA MŠk 1M0508 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40550506 Keywords : D-serine * serine racemase * random mutagenesis Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry Impact factor: 0.853, year: 2010

  11. Sunbed radiation provokes cutaneous vitamin D synthesis in humans--a randomized controlled trial

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thieden, Elisabeth; Jørgensen, Henrik L; Jørgensen, Niklas Rye

    2008-01-01

    We wanted to investigate whether the use of sunbeds with sunlamps emitting mainly UVA and only 0.5% or 1.4% UVB will increase the level of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D). In a randomized, controlled, open study on healthy, Caucasian females (> 50 years) sunbed radiation was given as follows...

  12. Enkephalin dipeptidyl carboxypeptidase (enkephalinase) activity: selective radioassay, properties, and regional distribution in human brain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Llorens, C.; Malfroy, B.; Schwartz, J.C.; Gacel, G.; Roques, B.P.; Roy, J.; Morgat, J.L.; Javoy-Agid, F.; Agid, Y.

    1982-01-01

    The compound [ 3 H-Tyr 1 ,D-Ala 2 ,Leu-OH 5 ]enkephalin has been synthesised as a potentially selective substrate for enkephalin dipeptidyl carboxypeptidase (enkephalinase) activity in brain. Incubations in the presence of homogenates and particulate fractions from rodent and human brain result in the formation of [ 3 H]Tyr-D-Ala-Gly, which can be conveniently isolated by polystyrene bead column chromatography. The enzyme activity responsible for the hydrolysis of the Gly 3 -Phe 4 amide bond of this substrate displays close resemblance to that hydrolysing the natural enkephalins at the same level. In addition, enkephalinase activity characterised in postmortem human brain is closely similar to that in rodent brain, with regard to optimal pH and apparent affinities of various substrates and inhibitors, including the potent compound thiorphan. Enkephalinase activity is distributed in a highly heterogeneous fashion among regions of human brain, the highest levels being found in globus pallidus and pars reticulata of the substantia nigra. This distribution is poorly correlated with that of opiate receptor binding sites but displays some resemblance to that of reported Met 5 -enkephalin levels. (author)

  13. An integrative analysis of reprogramming in human isogenic system identified a clone selection criterion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shutova, Maria V; Surdina, Anastasia V; Ischenko, Dmitry S; Naumov, Vladimir A; Bogomazova, Alexandra N; Vassina, Ekaterina M; Alekseev, Dmitry G; Lagarkova, Maria A; Kiselev, Sergey L

    2016-01-01

    The pluripotency of newly developed human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) is usually characterized by physiological parameters; i.e., by their ability to maintain the undifferentiated state and to differentiate into derivatives of the 3 germ layers. Nevertheless, a molecular comparison of physiologically normal iPSCs to the "gold standard" of pluripotency, embryonic stem cells (ESCs), often reveals a set of genes with different expression and/or methylation patterns in iPSCs and ESCs. To evaluate the contribution of the reprogramming process, parental cell type, and fortuity in the signature of human iPSCs, we developed a complete isogenic reprogramming system. We performed a genome-wide comparison of the transcriptome and the methylome of human isogenic ESCs, 3 types of ESC-derived somatic cells (fibroblasts, retinal pigment epithelium and neural cells), and 3 pairs of iPSC lines derived from these somatic cells. Our analysis revealed a high input of stochasticity in the iPSC signature that does not retain specific traces of the parental cell type and reprogramming process. We showed that 5 iPSC clones are sufficient to find with 95% confidence at least one iPSC clone indistinguishable from their hypothetical isogenic ESC line. Additionally, on the basis of a small set of genes that are characteristic of all iPSC lines and isogenic ESCs, we formulated an approach of "the best iPSC line" selection and confirmed it on an independent dataset.

  14. A comparison of random forest and its Gini importance with standard chemometric methods for the feature selection and classification of spectral data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Himmelreich Uwe

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Regularized regression methods such as principal component or partial least squares regression perform well in learning tasks on high dimensional spectral data, but cannot explicitly eliminate irrelevant features. The random forest classifier with its associated Gini feature importance, on the other hand, allows for an explicit feature elimination, but may not be optimally adapted to spectral data due to the topology of its constituent classification trees which are based on orthogonal splits in feature space. Results We propose to combine the best of both approaches, and evaluated the joint use of a feature selection based on a recursive feature elimination using the Gini importance of random forests' together with regularized classification methods on spectral data sets from medical diagnostics, chemotaxonomy, biomedical analytics, food science, and synthetically modified spectral data. Here, a feature selection using the Gini feature importance with a regularized classification by discriminant partial least squares regression performed as well as or better than a filtering according to different univariate statistical tests, or using regression coefficients in a backward feature elimination. It outperformed the direct application of the random forest classifier, or the direct application of the regularized classifiers on the full set of features. Conclusion The Gini importance of the random forest provided superior means for measuring feature relevance on spectral data, but – on an optimal subset of features – the regularized classifiers might be preferable over the random forest classifier, in spite of their limitation to model linear dependencies only. A feature selection based on Gini importance, however, may precede a regularized linear classification to identify this optimal subset of features, and to earn a double benefit of both dimensionality reduction and the elimination of noise from the classification task.

  15. Towards 1H-MRSI of the human brain at 7T with slice-selective adiabatic refocusing pulses.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scheenen, T.W.J.; Heerschap, A.; Klomp, D.W.J.

    2008-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To explore the possibilities of proton spectroscopic imaging (1H-MRSI) of the human brain at 7 Tesla with adiabatic refocusing pulses. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A combination of conventional slice selective excitation and two pairs of slice selective adiabatic refocusing pulses (semi-LASER)

  16. Co-administration of human papillomavirus-16/18 AS04-adjuvanted vaccine with hepatitis B vaccine: randomized study in healthy girls.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schmeink, C.E.; Bekkers, R.L.M.; Josefsson, A.; Richardus, J.H.; Berndtsson Blom, K.; David, M.P.; Dobbelaere, K.; Descamps, D.

    2011-01-01

    BACKGROUND: To evaluate co-administration of GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals' human papillomavirus-16/18 AS04-adjuvanted vaccine (HPV) and hepatitis B vaccine (HepB). METHODS: This was a randomized, controlled, open, multicenter study. Healthy girls, aged 9-15 years, were randomized to receive HPV

  17. Drug-selected human lung cancer stem cells: cytokine network, tumorigenic and metastatic properties.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vera Levina

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Cancer stem cells (CSCs are thought to be responsible for tumor regeneration after chemotherapy, although direct confirmation of this remains forthcoming. We therefore investigated whether drug treatment could enrich and maintain CSCs and whether the high tumorogenic and metastatic abilities of CSCs were based on their marked ability to produce growth and angiogenic factors and express their cognate receptors to stimulate tumor cell proliferation and stroma formation.Treatment of lung tumor cells with doxorubicin, cisplatin, or etoposide resulted in the selection of drug surviving cells (DSCs. These cells expressed CD133, CD117, SSEA-3, TRA1-81, Oct-4, and nuclear beta-catenin and lost expression of the differentiation markers cytokeratins 8/18 (CK 8/18. DSCs were able to grow as tumor spheres, maintain self-renewal capacity, and differentiate. Differentiated progenitors lost expression of CD133, gained CK 8/18 and acquired drug sensitivity. In the presence of drugs, differentiation of DSCs was abrogated allowing propagation of cells with CSC-like characteristics. Lung DSCs demonstrated high tumorogenic and metastatic potential following inoculation into SCID mice, which supported their classification as CSCs. Luminex analysis of human and murine cytokines in sonicated lysates of parental- and CSC-derived tumors revealed that CSC-derived tumors contained two- to three-fold higher levels of human angiogenic and growth factors (VEGF, bFGF, IL-6, IL-8, HGF, PDGF-BB, G-CSF, and SCGF-beta. CSCs also showed elevated levels of expression of human VEGFR2, FGFR2, CXCR1, 2 and 4 receptors. Moreover, human CSCs growing in SCID mice stimulated murine stroma to produce elevated levels of angiogenic and growth factors.These findings suggest that chemotherapy can lead to propagation of CSCs and prevention of their differentiation. The high tumorigenic and metastatic potentials of CSCs are associated with efficient cytokine network production that may represent

  18. PCBs and OCPs in human milk and selected foods from Luqiao and Pingqiao in Zhejiang, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhao Gaofeng; Xu Ying; Li Wen; Han Guanggen; Ling Bo

    2007-01-01

    This study was conducted to measure the levels of 23 PCB congeners and 6 organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) in human milk and three food types collected from Luqiao and Pingqiao in Zhejiang Province, China. An effort was also made to explore the potential health risk for the mothers and breast-fed infants living in these two localities. Luqiao was selected as the sampling site because it is the largest place for the disassembly of obsolete transformers and electrical waste in China. Pingqiao, located 100 km NW of Luqiao, is not known to be a place for any electronic or electrical waste and hence was chosen as the control site. Both localities are important agricultural places in the province. The organochlorines were measured in the samples using the GC-μECD technique. Micro-EROD bioassay method was also used as a complement of the chemical analysis to estimate the TEQ levels of dioxin-like PCBs in human milk. The data showed that the human milk, rice, hen egg, and fish samples from Luqiao were more heavily contaminated with PCBs than those from Pingqiao, suggesting that the mothers and their breast-fed infants in Luqiao tended to receive greater exposure to PCBs than those living in Pingqiao. The OCP levels in the two localities were found comparable, suggesting that the major source of contamination with these pesticides was from their agricultural uses. Significant correlation (R 2 = 0.87, P < 0.001) of PCB TEQs was found between the bioassay and chemical analysis method, suggesting that micro-EROD is an effective method for comprehensive determination of TEQ levels in human milk. Comparison with literature data showed that the PCB levels in milk samples from Luqiao were significantly higher than those from localities in other Chinese provinces and comparable to those in developed or industrialized countries

  19. Randomized controlled trials for influenza drugs and vaccines: a review of controlled human infection studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shobana Balasingam

    2016-08-01

    Conclusions: Controlled human infection studies are an important research tool in assessing promising influenza vaccines and antivirals. These studies are performed quickly and are cost-effective and safe, with a low incidence of serious adverse events.

  20. Distribution of uranium and some selected trace metals in human scalp hair from Balkans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zunic, Z S; Tokonami, S; Mishra, S; Arae, H; Kritsananuwat, R; Sahoo, S K

    2012-11-01

    The possible consequences of the use of depleted uranium (DU) used in Balkan conflicts in 1995 and 1999 for the people and the environment of this reason need attention. The heavy metal content in human hair may serve as a good indicator of dietary, environmental and occupational exposures to the metal compounds. The present work summarises the distribution of uranium and some selected trace metals such as Mn, Ni, Cu, Zn, Sr, Cd and Cs in the scalp hair of inhabitants from Balkans exposed to DU directly and indirectly, i.e. Han Pijesak, Bratoselce and Gornja Stubla areas. Except U and Cs, all other metals were compared with the worldwide reported values of occupationally unexposed persons. Uranium concentrations show a wide variation ranging from 0.9 ± 0.05 to 449 ± 12 µg kg(-1). Although hair samples were collected from Balkan conflict zones, uranium isotopic measurement ((235)U/(238)U) shows a natural origin rather than DU.

  1. A MARKOV RANDOM FIELD-BASED APPROACH TO CHARACTERIZING HUMAN BRAIN DEVELOPMENT USING SPATIAL-TEMPORAL TRANSCRIPTOME DATA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Zhixiang; Sanders, Stephan J; Li, Mingfeng; Sestan, Nenad; State, Matthew W; Zhao, Hongyu

    2015-03-01

    Human neurodevelopment is a highly regulated biological process. In this article, we study the dynamic changes of neurodevelopment through the analysis of human brain microarray data, sampled from 16 brain regions in 15 time periods of neurodevelopment. We develop a two-step inferential procedure to identify expressed and unexpressed genes and to detect differentially expressed genes between adjacent time periods. Markov Random Field (MRF) models are used to efficiently utilize the information embedded in brain region similarity and temporal dependency in our approach. We develop and implement a Monte Carlo expectation-maximization (MCEM) algorithm to estimate the model parameters. Simulation studies suggest that our approach achieves lower misclassification error and potential gain in power compared with models not incorporating spatial similarity and temporal dependency.

  2. In vitro development of donated frozen-thawed human embryos in a prototype static microfluidic device: a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kieslinger, Dorit C; Hao, Zhenxia; Vergouw, Carlijn G; Kostelijk, Elisabeth H; Lambalk, Cornelis B; Le Gac, Séverine

    2015-03-01

    To compare the development of human embryos in microfluidic devices with culture in standard microdrop dishes, both under static conditions. Prospective randomized controlled trial. In vitro fertilization laboratory. One hundred eighteen donated frozen-thawed human day-4 embryos. Random allocation of embryos that fulfilled the inclusion criteria to single-embryo culture in a microfluidics device (n = 58) or standard microdrop dish (n = 60). Blastocyst formation rate and quality after 24, 28, 48, and 72 hours of culture. The percentage of frozen-thawed day-4 embryos that developed to the blastocyst stage did not differ significantly in the standard microdrop dishes and microfluidic devices after 28 hours of culture (53.3% vs. 58.6%) or at any of the other time points. The proportion of embryos that would have been suitable for embryo transfer was comparable after 28 hours of culture in the control dishes and microfluidic devices (90.0% vs. 93.1%). Furthermore, blastocyst quality was similar in the two study groups. This study shows that a microfluidic device can successfully support human blastocyst development in vitro under static culture conditions. Future studies need to clarify whether earlier stage embryos will benefit from the culture in microfluidic devices more than the tested day-4 embryos because many important steps in the development of human embryos already take place before day 4. Further improvements of the microfluidic device will include parallel culture of single embryos, application of medium refreshment, and built-in sensors. NTR3867. Copyright © 2015 American Society for Reproductive Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Human rights abuse and other criminal violations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti: a random survey of households.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolbe, Athena R; Hutson, Royce A

    2006-09-02

    Reliable evidence of the frequency and severity of human rights abuses in Haiti after the departure of the elected president in 2004 was scarce. We assessed data from a random survey of households in the greater Port-au-Prince area. Using random Global Positioning System (GPS) coordinate sampling, 1260 households (5720 individuals) were sampled. They were interviewed with a structured questionnaire by trained interviewers about their experiences after the departure of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. The response rate was 90.7%. Information on demographic characteristics, crime, and human rights violations was obtained. Our findings suggested that 8000 individuals were murdered in the greater Port-au-Prince area during the 22-month period assessed. Almost half of the identified perpetrators were government forces or outside political actors. Sexual assault of women and girls was common, with findings suggesting that 35,000 women were victimised in the area; more than half of all female victims were younger than 18 years. Criminals were the most identified perpetrators, but officers from the Haitian National Police accounted for 13.8% and armed anti-Lavalas groups accounted for 10.6% of identified perpetrators of sexual assault. Kidnappings and extrajudicial detentions, physical assaults, death threats, physical threats, and threats of sexual violence were also common. Our results indicate that crime and systematic abuse of human rights were common in Port-au-Prince. Although criminals were the most identified perpetrators of violations, political actors and UN soldiers were also frequently identified. These findings suggest the need for a systematic response from the newly elected Haitian government, the UN, and social service organisations to address the legal, medical, psychological, and economic consequences of widespread human rights abuses and crime.

  4. Productivity effects of higher education human capital in selected countries of Sub-Saharan Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koye Gerry Bokana

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to analyse the productivity effects of higher education enrolment (HEE, higher education output (HEO and the associated productivity gap (GP on selected countries in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA over the period between 1981 and 2014. It was hypothesized in the study that HEE and HEO had statistically significant positive impact on productivity in the selected sub-Saharan Africa countries over the stated period. Fixed effect Least Square Dummy Variable (LSDV and a robust version of System Generalized Methods of Moment (SYSGMM were adopted as model estimating techniques. Results from the LSDV model indicated that HEE had no statistically significant positive impact on productivity growth in the twenty-one SSA countries. This non-significance was corrected in the dynamic model, but with negative effects on the growth rate of total factor productivity (TFP. The study further compared the worldwide technological frontier with those of the SSA countries under investigation and discovered that countries like Gabon, Mauritius and Swaziland ranked high, while Burundi needs to improve on its productivity determinants. The major conclusion of this study is therefore that higher education human capital should be supported with strong policy implementation, as this can have a positive impact on productivity growth.

  5. Selection on alleles affecting human longevity and late-life disease: the example of apolipoprotein E.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fotios Drenos

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available It is often claimed that genes affecting health in old age, such as cardiovascular and Alzheimer diseases, are beyond the reach of natural selection. We show in a simulation study based on known genetic (apolipoprotein E and non-genetic risk factors (gender, diet, smoking, alcohol, exercise that, because there is a statistical distribution of ages at which these genes exert their influence on morbidity and mortality, the effects of selection are in fact non-negligible. A gradual increase with each generation of the epsilon2 and epsilon3 alleles of the gene at the expense of the epsilon4 allele was predicted from the model. The epsilon2 allele frequency was found to increase slightly more rapidly than that for epsilon3, although there was no statistically significant difference between the two. Our result may explain the recent evolutionary history of the epsilon 2, 3 and 4 alleles of the apolipoprotein E gene and has wider relevance for genes affecting human longevity.

  6. Functional characterization of the modified melanocortin peptides responsible for ligand selectivity at the human melanocortin receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Min; Georgeson, Keith E; Harmon, Carroll M; Haskell-Luevano, Carrie; Yang, Yingkui

    2006-11-01

    The melanocortin system plays an important role in energy homeostasis as well as skin pigmentation, steroidogenesis and exocrine gland function. In this study, we examined eight Ac-His-Phe-Arg-Trp-NH(2) tetrapeptides that were modified at the Phe position and pharmacologically characterized their activities at the human MCR wild-types and their mutants. Our results indicate that at the hMC1R, all D stereochemical modified residues at the Phe position of peptides increase cAMP production in a dose-dependent manner. At the hMC3R, the DPhe peptide dose dependently increases cAMP production but all other three tetrapeptides were not. At the hMC4R, both the DPhe and DNal(1') peptides induce cAMP production. However, both DTyr and DNal(2') were not able to induce cAMP production. Further studies indicated that at the hMC1R M128L mutant receptor, the all D-configured tetrapeptides reduce their potencies as compared to that of hMC1R wild-type. However, at the hMC3R and hMC4R L165M and L133M mutant receptors, the DNal(2') and DTyr tetrapeptides possess agonist activity. These findings indicate that DPhe in tetrapeptide plays an important role in ligand selectivity and specific residue TM3 of the melanocortin receptors is crucial for ligand selectivity.

  7. The brain's silent messenger: using selective attention to decode human thought for brain-based communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naci, Lorina; Cusack, Rhodri; Jia, Vivian Z; Owen, Adrian M

    2013-05-29

    The interpretation of human thought from brain activity, without recourse to speech or action, is one of the most provoking and challenging frontiers of modern neuroscience. In particular, patients who are fully conscious and awake, yet, due to brain damage, are unable to show any behavioral responsivity, expose the limits of the neuromuscular system and the necessity for alternate forms of communication. Although it is well established that selective attention can significantly enhance the neural representation of attended sounds, it remains, thus far, untested as a response modality for brain-based communication. We asked whether its effect could be reliably used to decode answers to binary (yes/no) questions. Fifteen healthy volunteers answered questions (e.g., "Do you have brothers or sisters?") in the fMRI scanner, by selectively attending to the appropriate word ("yes" or "no"). Ninety percent of the answers were decoded correctly based on activity changes within the attention network. The majority of volunteers conveyed their answers with less than 3 min of scanning, suggesting that this technique is suited for communication in a reasonable amount of time. Formal comparison with the current best-established fMRI technique for binary communication revealed improved individual success rates and scanning times required to detect responses. This novel fMRI technique is intuitive, easy to use in untrained participants, and reliably robust within brief scanning times. Possible applications include communication with behaviorally nonresponsive patients.

  8. Myosin light chain 2-based selection of human iPSC-derived early ventricular cardiac myocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bizy, Alexandra; Guerrero-Serna, Guadalupe; Hu, Bin; Ponce-Balbuena, Daniela; Willis, B Cicero; Zarzoso, Manuel; Ramirez, Rafael J; Sener, Michelle F; Mundada, Lakshmi V; Klos, Matthew; Devaney, Eric J; Vikstrom, Karen L; Herron, Todd J; Jalife, José

    2013-11-01

    Applications of human induced pluripotent stem cell derived-cardiac myocytes (hiPSC-CMs) would be strengthened by the ability to generate specific cardiac myocyte (CM) lineages. However, purification of lineage-specific hiPSC-CMs is limited by the lack of cell marking techniques. Here, we have developed an iPSC-CM marking system using recombinant adenoviral reporter constructs with atrial- or ventricular-specific myosin light chain-2 (MLC-2) promoters. MLC-2a and MLC-2v selected hiPSC-CMs were purified by fluorescence-activated cell sorting and their biochemical and electrophysiological phenotypes analyzed. We demonstrate that the phenotype of both populations remained stable in culture and they expressed the expected sarcomeric proteins, gap junction proteins and chamber-specific transcription factors. Compared to MLC-2a cells, MLC-2v selected CMs had larger action potential amplitudes and durations. In addition, by immunofluorescence, we showed that MLC-2 isoform expression can be used to enrich hiPSC-CM consistent with early atrial and ventricular myocyte lineages. However, only the ventricular myosin light chain-2 promoter was able to purify a highly homogeneous population of iPSC-CMs. Using this approach, it is now possible to develop ventricular-specific disease models using iPSC-CMs while atrial-specific iPSC-CM cultures may require additional chamber-specific markers. © 2013.

  9. Selective attention reduces physiological noise in the external ear canals of humans. I: Auditory attention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Kyle P.; Pasanen, Edward G.; McFadden, Dennis

    2014-01-01

    In this study, a nonlinear version of the stimulus-frequency OAE (SFOAE), called the nSFOAE, was used to measure cochlear responses from human subjects while they simultaneously performed behavioral tasks requiring, or not requiring, selective auditory attention. Appended to each stimulus presentation, and included in the calculation of each nSFOAE response, was a 30-ms silent period that was used to estimate the level of the inherent physiological noise in the ear canals of our subjects during each behavioral condition. Physiological-noise magnitudes were higher (noisier) for all subjects in the inattention task, and lower (quieter) in the selective auditory-attention tasks. These noise measures initially were made at the frequency of our nSFOAE probe tone (4.0 kHz), but the same attention effects also were observed across a wide range of frequencies. We attribute the observed differences in physiological-noise magnitudes between the inattention and attention conditions to different levels of efferent activation associated with the differing attentional demands of the behavioral tasks. One hypothesis is that when the attentional demand is relatively great, efferent activation is relatively high, and a decrease in the gain of the cochlear amplifier leads to lower-amplitude cochlear activity, and thus a smaller measure of noise from the ear. PMID:24732069

  10. Neutron autoradiography imaging of selective boron uptake in human metastatic tumours

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Altieri, S. [Department of Nuclear and Theoretical Physics, University of Pavia, Via Bassi 6, Pavia (Italy); National Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN), Section of Pavia, Via Bassi 6, Pavia (Italy)], E-mail: saverio.altieri@pv.infn.it; Bortolussi, S. [Department of Nuclear and Theoretical Physics, University of Pavia, Via Bassi 6, Pavia (Italy); National Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN), Section of Pavia, Via Bassi 6, Pavia (Italy); Bruschi, P.; Chiari, P.; Fossati, F.; Stella, S. [Department of Nuclear and Theoretical Physics, University of Pavia, Via Bassi 6, Pavia (Italy); Prati, U.; Roveda, L. [Unit of cancer surgery, Cancer Center of Excellence, Foundation T. Campanella, Catanzaro (Italy); Zonta, A.; Zonta, C.; Ferrari, C.; Clerici, A. [Department of Surgery, University of Pavia, Piazza Botta, Pavia (Italy); Nano, R. [Department of Animal Biology, University of Pavia, Piazza Botta, Pavia (Italy); Pinelli, T. [Department of Nuclear and Theoretical Physics, University of Pavia, Via Bassi 6, Pavia (Italy); National Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN), Section of Pavia, Via Bassi 6, Pavia (Italy)

    2008-12-15

    The ability to selectively hit the tumour cells is an essential characteristic of an anti-tumour therapy. In boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) this characteristic is based on the selective uptake of {sup 10}B in the tumour cells with respect to normal tissues. An important step in the BNCT planning is the measurement of the boron concentration in the tissue samples, both tumour and healthy. When the tumour is spread through the healthy tissue, as in the case of metastases, the knowledge of the different kinds of tissues in the sample being analysed is crucial. If the percentage of tumour and normal tissues cannot be evaluated, the obtained concentration is a mean value depending on the composition of the different samples being measured. In this case an imaging method that could give information both on the morphology and on the spatial distribution of boron concentration in the sample would be a fundamental support. In this paper, the results of the boron uptake analysis in the tumour and in the healthy samples taken from human livers after boron phenylalanine (BPA) infusion are shown; boron imaging was performed using neutron autoradiography.

  11. Human Commercial Models' Eye Colour Shows Negative Frequency-Dependent Selection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabela Rodrigues Nogueira Forti

    Full Text Available In this study we investigated the eye colour of human commercial models registered in the UK (400 female and 400 male and Brazil (400 female and 400 male to test the hypothesis that model eye colour frequency was the result of negative frequency-dependent selection. The eye colours of the models were classified as: blue, brown or intermediate. Chi-square analyses of data for countries separated by sex showed that in the United Kingdom brown eyes and intermediate colours were significantly more frequent than expected in comparison to the general United Kingdom population (P<0.001. In Brazil, the most frequent eye colour brown was significantly less frequent than expected in comparison to the general Brazilian population. These results support the hypothesis that model eye colour is the result of negative frequency-dependent selection. This could be the result of people using eye colour as a marker of genetic diversity and finding rarer eye colours more attractive because of the potential advantage more genetically diverse offspring that could result from such a choice. Eye colour may be important because in comparison to many other physical traits (e.g., hair colour it is hard to modify, hide or disguise, and it is highly polymorphic.

  12. Randomized trial of switching from prescribed non-selective non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to prescribed celecoxib

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Macdonald, Thomas M; Hawkey, Chris J; Ford, Ian

    2017-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Selective cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitors and conventional non-selective non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (nsNSAIDs) have been associated with adverse cardiovascular (CV) effects. We compared the CV safety of switching to celecoxib vs. continuing nsNSAID therapy in a European setting...

  13. Empirical versus Random Item Selection in the Design of Intelligence Test Short Forms--The WISC-R Example.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goh, David S.

    1979-01-01

    The advantages of using psychometric thoery to design short forms of intelligence tests are demonstrated by comparing such usage to a systematic random procedure that has previously been used. The Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children Revised (WISC-R) Short Form is presented as an example. (JKS)

  14. A Small Molecule Inhibitor Selectively Induces Apoptosis in Cells Transformed by High Risk Human Papilloma Viruses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amy K Sheaffer

    Full Text Available A phenotypic high-throughput cell culture screen was performed to identify compounds that prevented proliferation of the human Papilloma virus type 16 (HPV-16 transformed cell line Ca Ski. A series of quinoxaline compounds exemplified by Compound 1 was identified. Testing against a panel of cell lines demonstrated that Compound 1 selectively inhibited replication of all HPV-16, HPV-18, and HPV-31 transformed cell lines tested with 50% Inhibitory Concentration (IC50 values of 2 to 8 μM relative to IC50 values of 28 to 73 μM in HPV-negative cell lines. Treatment with Compound 1 resulted in a cascade of multiple apoptotic events, including selective activation of effector caspases 3 and 7, fragmentation of cellular DNA, and PARP (poly(ADP-ribose polymerase cleavage in HPV-positive cells relative to HPV-negative cells. Unregulated proliferation of HPV transformed cells is dependent on the viral oncogenes, E6 and E7. Treatment with Compound 1 resulted in a decrease in HPV E7 protein in Ca Ski cells. However, the timing of this reduction relative to other effects of compound treatment suggests that this was a consequence, rather than a cause, of the apoptotic cascade. Likewise, compound treatment resulted in no obvious effects on the E6- and E7- mediated down regulation of p53 and Rb, or their downstream effectors, p21 or PCNA. Further investigation of apoptotic signals induced by Compound 1 revealed cleavage of Caspase-8 in HPV-positive cells as early as 2 hours post-treatment, suggesting the compound initiates apoptosis through the extrinsic, death receptor-mediated, pathway of cell death. These studies provide proof of concept that cells transformed by oncogenic Papillomaviruses can be selectively induced to undergo apoptosis by compound treatment.

  15. HSP10 selective preference for myeloid and megakaryocytic precursors in normal human bone marrow

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F Cappello

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Heat shock proteins (HSPs constitute a heterogeneous family of proteins involved in cell homeostasis. During cell life they are involved in harmful insults, as well as in immune and inflammatory reactions. It is known that they regulate gene expression, and cell proliferation, differentiation and death. HSP60 is a mitochondrial chaperonin, highly preserved during evolution, responsible of protein folding. Its function is strictly dependent on HSP10 in both prokaryotic and eukaryotic elements. We investigated the presence and the expression of HSP60 and HSP10 in a series of 20 normal human bone marrow specimens (NHBM by the means of immunohistochemistry. NHBM showed no expression of HSP60, probably due to its being below the detectable threshold, as already demonstrated in other normal human tissues. By contrast, HSP10 showed a selective positivity for myeloid and megakaryocytic lineages. The positivity was restricted to precursor cells, while mature elements were constantly negative.We postulate that HSP10 plays a role in bone marrow cell differentiation other than being a mitochondrial co-chaperonin. The present data emphasize the role of HSP10 during cellular homeostasis and encourage further investigations in this field.

  16. Does selection for short sleep duration explain human vulnerability to Alzheimer's disease?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesse, Randolph M; Finch, Caleb E; Nunn, Charles L

    2017-01-16

    Compared with other primates, humans sleep less and have a much higher prevalence of Alzheimer 's disease (AD) pathology. This article reviews evidence relevant to the hypothesis that natural selection for shorter sleep time in humans has compromised the efficacy of physiological mechanisms that protect against AD during sleep. In particular, the glymphatic system drains interstitial fluid from the brain, removing extra-cellular amyloid beta (eAβ) twice as fast during sleep. In addition, melatonin - a peptide hormone that increases markedly during sleep - is an effective antioxidant that inhibits the polymerization of soluble eAβ into insoluble amyloid fibrils that are associated with AD. Sleep deprivation increases plaque formation and AD, which itself disrupts sleep, potentially creating a positive feedback cycle. These and other physiological benefits of sleep may be compromised by short sleep durations. Our hypothesis highlights possible long-term side effects of medications that reduce sleep, and may lead to potential new strategies for preventing and treating AD. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Foundation for Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health.

  17. Does selection for short sleep duration explain human vulnerability to Alzheimer’s disease?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesse, Randolph M; Finch, Caleb E; Nunn, Charles L

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Compared with other primates, humans sleep less and have a much higher prevalence of Alzheimer ’s disease (AD) pathology. This article reviews evidence relevant to the hypothesis that natural selection for shorter sleep time in humans has compromised the efficacy of physiological mechanisms that protect against AD during sleep. In particular, the glymphatic system drains interstitial fluid from the brain, removing extra-cellular amyloid beta (eAβ) twice as fast during sleep. In addition, melatonin—a peptide hormone that increases markedly during sleep—is an effective antioxidant that inhibits the polymerization of soluble eAβ into insoluble amyloid fibrils that are associated with AD. Sleep deprivation increases plaque formation and AD, which itself disrupts sleep, potentially creating a positive feedback cycle. These and other physiological benefits of sleep may be compromised by short sleep durations. Our hypothesis highlights possible long-term side effects of medications that reduce sleep, and may lead to potential new strategies for preventing and treating AD. PMID:28096295

  18. Bayesian model selection validates a biokinetic model for zirconium processing in humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background In radiation protection, biokinetic models for zirconium processing are of crucial importance in dose estimation and further risk analysis for humans exposed to this radioactive substance. They provide limiting values of detrimental effects and build the basis for applications in internal dosimetry, the prediction for radioactive zirconium retention in various organs as well as retrospective dosimetry. Multi-compartmental models are the tool of choice for simulating the processing of zirconium. Although easily interpretable, determining the exact compartment structure and interaction mechanisms is generally daunting. In the context of observing the dynamics of multiple compartments, Bayesian methods provide efficient tools for model inference and selection. Results We are the first to apply a Markov chain Monte Carlo approach to compute Bayes factors for the evaluation of two competing models for zirconium processing in the human body after ingestion. Based on in vivo measurements of human plasma and urine levels we were able to show that a recently published model is superior to the standard model of the International Commission on Radiological Protection. The Bayes factors were estimated by means of the numerically stable thermodynamic integration in combination with a recently developed copula-based Metropolis-Hastings sampler. Conclusions In contrast to the standard model the novel model predicts lower accretion of zirconium in bones. This results in lower levels of noxious doses for exposed individuals. Moreover, the Bayesian approach allows for retrospective dose assessment, including credible intervals for the initially ingested zirconium, in a significantly more reliable fashion than previously possible. All methods presented here are readily applicable to many modeling tasks in systems biology. PMID:22863152

  19. Balancing selection on a regulatory region exhibiting ancient variation that predates human-neandertal divergence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Omer Gokcumen

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Ancient population structure shaping contemporary genetic variation has been recently appreciated and has important implications regarding our understanding of the structure of modern human genomes. We identified a ∼36-kb DNA segment in the human genome that displays an ancient substructure. The variation at this locus exists primarily as two highly divergent haplogroups. One of these haplogroups (the NE1 haplogroup aligns with the Neandertal haplotype and contains a 4.6-kb deletion polymorphism in perfect linkage disequilibrium with 12 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs across diverse populations. The other haplogroup, which does not contain the 4.6-kb deletion, aligns with the chimpanzee haplotype and is likely ancestral. Africans have higher overall pairwise differences with the Neandertal haplotype than Eurasians do for this NE1 locus (p<10⁻¹⁵. Moreover, the nucleotide diversity at this locus is higher in Eurasians than in Africans. These results mimic signatures of recent Neandertal admixture contributing to this locus. However, an in-depth assessment of the variation in this region across multiple populations reveals that African NE1 haplotypes, albeit rare, harbor more sequence variation than NE1 haplotypes found in Europeans, indicating an ancient African origin of this haplogroup and refuting recent Neandertal admixture. Population genetic analyses of the SNPs within each of these haplogroups, along with genome-wide comparisons revealed significant FST (p = 0.00003 and positive Tajima's D (p = 0.00285 statistics, pointing to non-neutral evolution of this locus. The NE1 locus harbors no protein-coding genes, but contains transcribed sequences as well as sequences with putative regulatory function based on bioinformatic predictions and in vitro experiments. We postulate that the variation observed at this locus predates Human-Neandertal divergence and is evolving under balancing selection, especially among European

  20. The thrombopoietin receptor, c-Mpl, is a selective surface marker for human hematopoietic stem cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kerr William G

    2006-02-01

    from mid-fetal through adult life. This study extends our previous work documenting human B-lineage, myeloid and CD34+ cell repopulation by c-mpl+ progenitors to show that c-mpl+ HSC/PC are also capable of significant T-lineage reconstitution in vivo. These results suggest that c-mpl merits consideration as a selective surface marker for the identification and isolation of human HSC in both basic research and clinical settings.

  1. Engineering human T cells for resistance to methotrexate and mycophenolate mofetil as an in vivo cell selection strategy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahesh Jonnalagadda

    Full Text Available Gene transfer and drug selection systems that enforce ongoing transgene expression in vitro and in vivo which are compatible with human pharmaceutical drugs are currently underdeveloped. Here, we report on the utility of incorporating human enzyme muteins that confer resistance to the lymphotoxic/immunosuppressive drugs methotrexate (MTX and mycophenolate mofetil (MMF in a multicistronic lentiviral vector for in vivo T lymphocyte selection. We found that co-expression of human dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR(FS; L22F, F31S and inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase II (IMPDH2(IY; T333I, S351Y conferred T cell resistance to the cytocidal and anti-proliferative effects of these drugs at concentrations that can be achieved clinically (up to 0.1 µM MTX and 1.0 µM MPA. Furthermore, using a immunodeficient mouse model that supports the engraftment of central memory derived human T cells, in vivo selection studies demonstrate that huEGFRt(+DHFR(FS+IMPDH2(IY+ T cells could be enriched following adoptive transfer either by systemic administration of MTX alone (4.4 -fold, MMF alone (2.9-fold, or combined MTX and MMF (4.9-fold. These findings demonstrate the utility of both DHFR(FS/MTX and IMPDH2(IY/MMF for in vivo selection of lentivirally transduced human T cells. Vectors incorporating these muteins in combination with other therapeutic transgenes may facilitate the selective engraftment of therapeutically active cells in recipients.

  2. Engineering human T cells for resistance to methotrexate and mycophenolate mofetil as an in vivo cell selection strategy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonnalagadda, Mahesh; Brown, Christine E; Chang, Wen-Chung; Ostberg, Julie R; Forman, Stephen J; Jensen, Michael C

    2013-01-01

    Gene transfer and drug selection systems that enforce ongoing transgene expression in vitro and in vivo which are compatible with human pharmaceutical drugs are currently underdeveloped. Here, we report on the utility of incorporating human enzyme muteins that confer resistance to the lymphotoxic/immunosuppressive drugs methotrexate (MTX) and mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) in a multicistronic lentiviral vector for in vivo T lymphocyte selection. We found that co-expression of human dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR(FS); L22F, F31S) and inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase II (IMPDH2(IY); T333I, S351Y) conferred T cell resistance to the cytocidal and anti-proliferative effects of these drugs at concentrations that can be achieved clinically (up to 0.1 µM MTX and 1.0 µM MPA). Furthermore, using a immunodeficient mouse model that supports the engraftment of central memory derived human T cells, in vivo selection studies demonstrate that huEGFRt(+)DHFR(FS+)IMPDH2(IY+) T cells could be enriched following adoptive transfer either by systemic administration of MTX alone (4.4 -fold), MMF alone (2.9-fold), or combined MTX and MMF (4.9-fold). These findings demonstrate the utility of both DHFR(FS)/MTX and IMPDH2(IY)/MMF for in vivo selection of lentivirally transduced human T cells. Vectors incorporating these muteins in combination with other therapeutic transgenes may facilitate the selective engraftment of therapeutically active cells in recipients.

  3. Do vouchers lead to sorting under random private-school selection? Evidence from the Milwaukee voucher program

    OpenAIRE

    Chakrabarti, Rajashri

    2009-01-01

    This paper analyzes the effect of school vouchers on student sorting - defined as a flight to private schools by high-income and committed public-school students - and whether vouchers can be designed to reduce or eliminate it. Much of the existing literature investigates sorting in cases where private schools can screen students. However, publicly funded U.S. voucher programs require a private school to accept all students unless it is oversubscribed and to pick students randomly if it is ov...

  4. Online games: a novel approach to explore how partial information influences human random searches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-García, Ricardo; Calabrese, Justin M.; López, Cristóbal

    2017-01-01

    Many natural processes rely on optimizing the success ratio of a search process. We use an experimental setup consisting of a simple online game in which players have to find a target hidden on a board, to investigate how the rounds are influenced by the detection of cues. We focus on the search duration and the statistics of the trajectories traced on the board. The experimental data are explained by a family of random-walk-based models and probabilistic analytical approximations. If no initial information is given to the players, the search is optimized for cues that cover an intermediate spatial scale. In addition, initial information about the extension of the cues results, in general, in faster searches. Finally, strategies used by informed players turn into non-stationary processes in which the length of e ach displacement evolves to show a well-defined characteristic scale that is not found in non-informed searches.

  5. SNPs selected by information content outperform randomly selected microsatellite loci for delineating genetic identification and introgression in the endangered dark European honeybee (Apis mellifera mellifera).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz, Irene; Henriques, Dora; Jara, Laura; Johnston, J Spencer; Chávez-Galarza, Julio; De La Rúa, Pilar; Pinto, M Alice

    2017-07-01

    The honeybee (Apis mellifera) has been threatened by multiple factors including pests and pathogens, pesticides and loss of locally adapted gene complexes due to replacement and introgression. In western Europe, the genetic integrity of the native A. m. mellifera (M-lineage) is endangered due to trading and intensive queen breeding with commercial subspecies of eastern European ancestry (C-lineage). Effective conservation actions require reliable molecular tools to identify pure-bred A. m. mellifera colonies. Microsatellites have been preferred for identification of A. m. mellifera stocks across conservation centres. However, owing to high throughput, easy transferability between laboratories and low genotyping error, SNPs promise to become popular. Here, we compared the resolving power of a widely utilized microsatellite set to detect structure and introgression with that of different sets that combine a variable number of SNPs selected for their information content and genomic proximity to the microsatellite loci. Contrary to every SNP data set, microsatellites did not discriminate between the two lineages in the PCA space. Mean introgression proportions were identical across the two marker types, although at the individual level, microsatellites' performance was relatively poor at the upper range of Q-values, a result reflected by their lower precision. Our results suggest that SNPs are more accurate and powerful than microsatellites for identification of A. m. mellifera colonies, especially when they are selected by information content. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Effects of one versus two bouts of moderate intensity physical activity on selective attention during a school morning in Dutch primary schoolchildren: A randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altenburg, Teatske M; Chinapaw, Mai J M; Singh, Amika S

    2016-10-01

    Evidence suggests that physical activity is positively related to several aspects of cognitive functioning in children, among which is selective attention. To date, no information is available on the optimal frequency of physical activity on cognitive functioning in children. The current study examined the acute effects of one and two bouts of moderate-intensity physical activity on children's selective attention. Randomized controlled trial (ISRCTN97975679). Thirty boys and twenty-six girls, aged 10-13 years, were randomly assigned to three conditions: (A) sitting all morning working on simulated school tasks; (B) one 20-min physical activity bout after 90min; and (C) two 20-min physical activity bouts, i.e. at the start and after 90min. Selective attention was assessed at five time points during the morning (i.e. at baseline and after 20, 110, 130 and 220min), using the 'Sky Search' subtest of the 'Test of Selective Attention in Children'. We used GEE analysis to examine differences in Sky Search scores between the three experimental conditions, adjusting for school, baseline scores, self-reported screen time and time spent in sports. Children who performed two 20-min bouts of moderate-intensity physical activity had significantly better Sky Search scores compared to children who performed one physical activity bout or remained seated the whole morning (B=-0.26; 95% CI=[-0.52; -0.00]). Our findings support the importance of repeated physical activity during the school day for beneficial effects on selective attention in children. Copyright © 2015 Sports Medicine Australia. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Maladaptive habitat selection of a migratory passerine bird in a human-modified landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franck A Hollander

    Full Text Available In human-altered environments, organisms may preferentially settle in poor-quality habitats where fitness returns are lower relative to available higher-quality habitats. Such ecological trapping is due to a mismatch between the cues used during habitat selection and the habitat quality. Maladaptive settlement decisions may occur when organisms are time-constrained and have to rapidly evaluate habitat quality based on incomplete knowledge of the resources and conditions that will be available later in the season. During a three-year study, we examined settlement decision-making in the long-distance migratory, open-habitat bird, the Red-backed shrike (Lanius collurio, as a response to recent land-use changes. In Northwest Europe, the shrikes typically breed in open areas under a management regime of extensive farming. In recent decades, Spruce forests have been increasingly managed with large-size cutblocks in even-aged plantations, thereby producing early-successional vegetation areas that are also colonised by the species. Farmland and open areas in forests create mosaics of two different types of habitats that are now occupied by the shrikes. We examined redundant measures of habitat preference (order of settlement after migration and distribution of dominant individuals and several reproductive performance parameters in both habitat types to investigate whether habitat preference is in line with habitat quality. Territorial males exhibited a clear preference for the recently created open areas in forests with higher-quality males settling in this habitat type earlier. Reproductive performance was, however, higher in farmland, with higher nest success, offspring quantity, and quality compared to open areas in forests. The results showed strong among-year consistency and we can therefore exclude a transient situation. This study demonstrates a case of maladaptive habitat selection in a farmland bird expanding its breeding range to human

  8. Selection pressure on human STR loci and its relevance in repeat expansion disease

    KAUST Repository

    Shimada, Makoto K.

    2016-06-11

    Short Tandem Repeats (STRs) comprise repeats of one to several base pairs. Because of the high mutability due to strand slippage during DNA synthesis, rapid evolutionary change in the number of repeating units directly shapes the range of repeat-number variation according to selection pressure. However, the remaining questions include: Why are STRs causing repeat expansion diseases maintained in the human population; and why are these limited to neurodegenerative diseases? By evaluating the genome-wide selection pressure on STRs using the database we constructed, we identified two different patterns of relationship in repeat-number polymorphisms between DNA and amino-acid sequences, although both patterns are evolutionary consequences of avoiding the formation of harmful long STRs. First, a mixture of degenerate codons is represented in poly-proline (poly-P) repeats. Second, long poly-glutamine (poly-Q) repeats are favored at the protein level; however, at the DNA level, STRs encoding long poly-Qs are frequently divided by synonymous SNPs. Furthermore, significant enrichments of apoptosis and neurodevelopment were biological processes found specifically in genes encoding poly-Qs with repeat polymorphism. This suggests the existence of a specific molecular function for polymorphic and/or long poly-Q stretches. Given that the poly-Qs causing expansion diseases were longer than other poly-Qs, even in healthy subjects, our results indicate that the evolutionary benefits of long and/or polymorphic poly-Q stretches outweigh the risks of long CAG repeats predisposing to pathological hyper-expansions. Molecular pathways in neurodevelopment requiring long and polymorphic poly-Q stretches may provide a clue to understanding why poly-Q expansion diseases are limited to neurodegenerative diseases. © 2016, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

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

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    Ludger Elling

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

  10. Selective enrichment and biochemical characterization of seven human skin fibroblasts cell types in vitro

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rodemann, H.P.; Bayreuther, K.; Francz, P.I.; Dittmann, K.; Albiez, M.

    1989-01-01

    The mitotic and postmitotic populations of the human skin fibroblast cell line HH-8 are heterogeneous when studied in vitro. There are reproducible changes in the frequencies of the mitotic fibroblasts (MF), MF I, MF II, MF III, and the postmitotic fibroblasts (PMF), PMF IV, PMF V, PMF VI, and PMF VII. For biochemical characterization, methods for selective enrichment of homogeneous populations of these seven fibroblast cell types have been established. Clonal populations with 95% purity for the mitotic fibroblasts MF I, MF II, and MF III can be raised in uniform clone types of fibroblasts (CTF) CTF I, CTF II, and CTF III. Pure clonal subpopulations of MF I type cells are present in mass populations in the range of 1-20 cumulative population doublings (CPD). Populations of mitotic fibroblasts represent nearly homogeneous populations of MF II (75-85% purity) in the range of 28-34 CPD and MF III (73-86% purity) in the range of 48-53 CPD. These populations can be easily expanded to up to 10(7)-10(8) cells. The spontaneous transition of MF III to PMF VI takes 140-180 days. In order to shorten this period and increase the proportion of distinct postmitotic types, mitotic fibroblast mass populations (CPD 30-32, MF II: 75-85% purity) have been induced by uv-irradiation to differentiate to nearly homogeneous populations of PMF IV, PMF V, PMF VI, and PMF VII within 4 to 36 days of culture. Using this method, 10(7) cells of one differentiation stage can be obtained. Spontaneously arising and experimentally selected or induced homogeneous clonal and mass populations of MF I, MF II, MF III, PMF IV, PMF V, PMF VI, and PMF VII express an identical differentiation-dependent and cell-type-specific [35S]methionine-labeled polypeptide pattern

  11. Telomere disruption results in non-random formation of de novo dicentric chromosomes involving acrocentric human chromosomes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaitlin M Stimpson

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Genome rearrangement often produces chromosomes with two centromeres (dicentrics that are inherently unstable because of bridge formation and breakage during cell division. However, mammalian dicentrics, and particularly those in humans, can be quite stable, usually because one centromere is functionally silenced. Molecular mechanisms of centromere inactivation are poorly understood since there are few systems to experimentally create dicentric human chromosomes. Here, we describe a human cell culture model that enriches for de novo dicentrics. We demonstrate that transient disruption of human telomere structure non-randomly produces dicentric fusions involving acrocentric chromosomes. The induced dicentrics vary in structure near fusion breakpoints and like naturally-occurring dicentrics, exhibit various inter-centromeric distances. Many functional dicentrics persist for months after formation. Even those with distantly spaced centromeres remain functionally dicentric for 20 cell generations. Other dicentrics within the population reflect centromere inactivation. In some cases, centromere inactivation occurs by an apparently epigenetic mechanism. In other dicentrics, the size of the alpha-satellite DNA array associated with CENP-A is reduced compared to the same array before dicentric formation. Extra-chromosomal fragments that contained CENP-A often appear in the same cells as dicentrics. Some of these fragments are derived from the same alpha-satellite DNA array as inactivated centromeres. Our results indicate that dicentric human chromosomes undergo alternative fates after formation. Many retain two active centromeres and are stable through multiple cell divisions. Others undergo centromere inactivation. This event occurs within a broad temporal window and can involve deletion of chromatin that marks the locus as a site for CENP-A maintenance/replenishment.

  12. The effects of nanophase ceramic materials on select functions of human mesenchymal stem cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dulgar-Tulloch, Aaron Joseph

    2005-11-01

    Modification of the chemistry and surface topography of nanophase ceramics can provide biomaterial formulations capable of directing the functions of adherent cells. This effect relies on the type, amount, and conformation of adsorbed proteins that mediate the adhesion of mesenchymally-descended lineages. The mechanisms driving this response are not yet well-understood and have not been investigated for human mesenchymal stem cells (HMSCs), a progenitor-lineage critical to orthopaedic biomaterials. The present study addressed these needs by examining the in vitro adhesion, proliferation, and osteogenic differentiation of HMSCs as a function of substrate chemistry and grain size, with particular attention to the protein-mediated mechanisms of cell adhesion. Alumina, titania, and hydroxyapatite substrates were prepared with 1500, 200, 50, and 24 (alumina only) nm grain sizes, and characterized with respect to surface properties, porosity, composition, and phase. Adhesion of HMSCs was dependent upon both chemistry and grain size. Specifically, adhesion on alumina and hydroxyapatite was reduced on 50 and 24 (alumina only) nm surfaces, as compared to 1500 and 200 nm surfaces, while adhesion on titania substrates was independent of grain size. Investigation into the protein-mediated mechanisms of this response identified vitronectin as the dominant adhesive protein, demonstrated random protein distribution across the substrate surface without aggregation or segregation, and confirmed the importance of the type, amount, and conformation of adsorbed proteins in cell adhesion. Minimal cell proliferation was observed on 50 and 24 (alumina only) nm substrates of any chemistry. Furthermore, cell proliferation was up-regulated on 200 nm substrates after 7 days of culture. Osteogenic differentiation was not detected on 50 nm substrates throughout the 28 day culture period. In contrast, osteogenic differentiation was strongly enhanced on 200 nm substrates, occurring approximately

  13. RECRUITMENT AND SELECTION PROCESS OF HUMAN RESOURCES: A SAMPLE OF TRAVEL AGENCIES OPERATING IN FETHİYE

    OpenAIRE

    ERGÜN, Emre; GAVCAR, Erdoğan

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to understand the recruitment and selection process of travel agencies' employees operating in Fethiye. The data was collected from the department managers hired in travel agencies operating in Fethiye and analyzed using the statistical package programs.According to the results, the selection criteria were different between incoming agencies and the agencies that were not incoming. Besides, there was another difference on the agencies that have human resource...

  14. Evaluation of anti-hyperalgesic and analgesic effects of two benzodiazepines in human experimental pain: a randomized placebo-controlled study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pascal H Vuilleumier

    Full Text Available Compounds that act on GABA-receptors produce anti-hyperalgesia in animal models, but little is known on their effects in humans. The aim of this study was to explore the potential usefulness of GABA-agonism for the control of pain in humans. Two agonists at the benzodiazepine-binding site of GABAA-receptors (clobazam and clonazepam were studied using multiple experimental pain tests. Positive results would support further investigation of GABA agonism for the control of clinical pain.In a randomized double-blind crossover design, 16 healthy male volunteers received clobazam 20 mg, clonazepam 1 mg and tolterodine 1 mg (active placebo. The area of static hyperalgesia after intradermal capsaicin injection was the primary endpoint. Secondary endpoints were: area of dynamic hyperalgesia, response to von Frey hair stimulation, pressure pain thresholds, conditioned pain modulation, cutaneous and intramuscular electrical pain thresholds (1, 5 and 20 repeated stimulation, and pain during cuff algometry.For the primary endpoint, an increase in the area of static hyperalgesia was observed after administration of placebo (p<0.001, but not after clobazam and clonazepam. Results suggestive for an anti-hyperalgesic effect of the benzodiazepines were obtained with all three intramuscular pain models and with cuff algometry. No effect could be detected with the other pain models employed.Collectively, the results are suggestive for a possible anti-hyperalgesic effect of drugs acting at the GABAA-receptors in humans, particularly in models of secondary hyperalgesia and deep pain. The findings are not conclusive, but support further clinical research on pain modulation by GABAergic drugs. Because of the partial results, future research should focus on compounds acting selectively on subunits of the GABA complex, which may allow the achievement of higher receptor occupancy than unselective drugs. Our data also provide information on the most suitable experimental

  15. The concentration of heavy metals: zinc, cadmium, lead, copper, mercury, iron and calcium in head hair of a randomly selected sample of Kenyan people

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wandiga, S.O.; Jumba, I.O.

    1982-01-01

    An intercomparative analysis of the concentration of heavy metals:zinc, cadmium, lead, copper, mercury, iron and calcium in head hair of a randomly selected sample of Kenyan people using the techniques of atomic absorption spectrophotometry (AAS) and differential pulse anodic stripping voltammetry (DPAS) has been undertaken. The percent relative standard deviation for each sample analysed using either of the techniques show good sensitivity and correlation between the techniques. The DPAS was found to be slightly sensitive than the AAs instrument used. The recalculated body burden rations of Cd to Zn, Pb to Fe reveal no unusual health impairement symptoms and suggest a relatively clean environment in Kenya.(author)

  16. Stability-Diversity Tradeoffs Impose Fundamental Constraints on Selection of Synthetic Human VH/VL Single-Domain Antibodies from In Vitro Display Libraries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henry, Kevin A; Kim, Dae Young; Kandalaft, Hiba; Lowden, Michael J; Yang, Qingling; Schrag, Joseph D; Hussack, Greg; MacKenzie, C Roger; Tanha, Jamshid

    2017-01-01

    Human autonomous V H /V L single-domain antibodies (sdAbs) are attractive therapeutic molecules, but often suffer from suboptimal stability, solubility and affinity for cognate antigens. Most commonly, human sdAbs have been isolated from in vitro display libraries constructed via synthetic randomization of rearranged V H /V L domains. Here, we describe the design and characterization of three novel human V H /V L sdAb libraries through a process of: (i) exhaustive biophysical characterization of 20 potential V H /V L sdAb library scaffolds, including assessment of expression yield, aggregation resistance, thermostability and tolerance to complementarity-determining region (CDR) substitutions; (ii) in vitro randomization of the CDRs of three V H /V L sdAb scaffolds, with tailored amino acid representation designed to promote solubility and expressibility; and (iii) systematic benchmarking of the three V H /V L libraries by panning against five model antigens. We isolated ≥1 antigen-specific human sdAb against four of five targets (13 V H s and 7 V L s in total); these were predominantly monomeric, had antigen-binding affinities ranging from 5 nM to 12 µM (average: 2-3 µM), but had highly variable expression yields (range: 0.1-19 mg/L). Despite our efforts to identify the most stable V H /V L scaffolds, selection of antigen-specific binders from these libraries was unpredictable (overall success rate for all library-target screens: ~53%) with a high attrition rate of sdAbs exhibiting false positive binding by ELISA. By analyzing V H /V L sdAb library sequence composition following selection for monomeric antibody expression (binding to protein A/L followed by amplification in bacterial cells), we found that some V H /V L sdAbs had marked growth advantages over others, and that the amino acid composition of the CDRs of this set of sdAbs was dramatically restricted (bias toward Asp and His and away from aromatic and hydrophobic residues). Thus, CDR sequence

  17. Combined Effects of Ezetimibe and Phytosterols on Cholesterol Metabolism: A Randomized, Controlled Feeding Study in Humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Xiaobo; Racette, Susan B.; Lefevre, Michael; Ma, Lina; Spearie, Catherine Anderson; Steger-May, Karen; Ostlund, Richard E.

    2011-01-01

    Background Both ezetimibe and phytosterols inhibit cholesterol absorption. We tested the hypothesis that ezetimibe combined with phytosterols is more effective than ezetimibe alone in altering cholesterol metabolism. Methods and Results Twenty-one mildly hypercholesterolemic subjects completed a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, triple crossover study. Each subject received a phytosterol-controlled diet plus (1) ezetimibe placebo + phytosterol placebo, (2) 10 mg ezetimibe/day + phytosterol placebo, and (3) 10 mg ezetimibe/day + 2.5 g phytosterols/day, for 3 weeks each. All meals were prepared in a metabolic kitchen. Primary outcomes were intestinal cholesterol absorption, fecal cholesterol excretion, and LDL cholesterol levels. The combined treatment resulted in significantly lower intestinal cholesterol absorption (598 mg/day, 95% CI 368 to 828) relative to control (2161 mg/day, 1112 to 3209) and ezetimibe alone (1054 mg/day, 546 to 1561, both P phytosterols averaged 129 (95% CI: 116 to 142), 108 (97 to 119), and 101 (90 to 112) mg/dL (P phytosterols to ezetimibe significantly enhanced the effects of ezetimibe on whole-body cholesterol metabolism and plasma LDL cholesterol. The large cumulative action of combined dietary and pharmacologic treatment on cholesterol metabolism emphasizes the potential importance of dietary phytosterols as adjunctive therapy for the treatment of hypercholesterolemia. PMID:21768544

  18. Cardioprotective effects of cocoa: clinical evidence from randomized clinical intervention trials in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arranz, Sara; Valderas-Martinez, Palmira; Chiva-Blanch, Gemma; Casas, Rosa; Urpi-Sarda, Mireia; Lamuela-Raventos, Rosa M; Estruch, Ramon

    2013-06-01

    Cocoa is an important source of polyphenols, which comprise 12-18% of its total dry weight. The major phenolic compounds in cocoa and cocoa products are mainly flavonoids such as epicatechin, catechin, and proanthocyanidins. These products contain higher amounts of flavonoids than other polyphenol-rich foods. However, the bioavailability of these compounds depends on other food constituents and their interactions with the food matrix. Many epidemiological and clinical intervention trials have concluded that the ingestion of flavonoids reduces the risk factors of developing cardiovascular disease. This review summarizes the new findings regarding the effects of cocoa and chocolate consumption on cardiovascular risk factors. The mechanisms involved in the cardioprotective effects of cocoa flavonoids include reduction of oxidative stress, inhibition of low-density lipoproteins oxidation and platelet aggregation, vasodilatation of blood vessels, inhibition of the adherence of monocytes to vascular endothelium, promotion of fibrinolysis, and immunomodulatory and anti-inflammatory activity. Scientific evidence supports a cause and effect relationship between consumption of cocoa flavonoids and the maintenance of normal endothelium-dependent vasodilation, which contributes to normal blood flow. However, larger randomized trials are required to definitively establish the impact of cocoa and cocoa products consumption on hard cardiovascular outcomes. © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  19. Human performance across decision making, selective attention, and working memory tasks: Experimental data and computer simulations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Stocco

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available This article describes the data analyzed in the paper “Individual differences in the Simon effect are underpinned by differences in the competitive dynamics in the basal ganglia: An experimental verification and a computational model” (Stocco et al., 2017 [1]. The data includes behavioral results from participants performing three cognitive tasks (Probabilistic Stimulus Selection (Frank et al., 2004 [2], Simon task (Craft and Simon, 1970 [3], and Automated Operation Span (Unsworth et al., 2005 [4], as well as simulationed traces generated by a computational neurocognitive model that accounts for individual variations in human performance across the tasks. The experimental data encompasses individual data files (in both preprocessed and native output format as well as group-level summary files. The simulation data includes the entire model code, the results of a full-grid search of the model's parameter space, and the code used to partition the model space and parallelize the simulations. Finally, the repository includes the R scripts used to carry out the statistical analyses reported in the original paper.

  20. Human performance across decision making, selective attention, and working memory tasks: Experimental data and computer simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stocco, Andrea; Yamasaki, Brianna L; Prat, Chantel S

    2018-04-01

    This article describes the data analyzed in the paper "Individual differences in the Simon effect are underpinned by differences in the competitive dynamics in the basal ganglia: An experimental verification and a computational model" (Stocco et al., 2017) [1]. The data includes behavioral results from participants performing three cognitive tasks (Probabilistic Stimulus Selection (Frank et al., 2004) [2], Simon task (Craft and Simon, 1970) [3], and Automated Operation Span (Unsworth et al., 2005) [4]), as well as simulationed traces generated by a computational neurocognitive model that accounts for individual variations in human performance across the tasks. The experimental data encompasses individual data files (in both preprocessed and native output format) as well as group-level summary files. The simulation data includes the entire model code, the results of a full-grid search of the model's parameter space, and the code used to partition the model space and parallelize the simulations. Finally, the repository includes the R scripts used to carry out the statistical analyses reported in the original paper.

  1. Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors in Human Pregnancy: To Treat or Not to Treat?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Orna Diav-Citrin

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs are increasingly prescribed during pregnancy. The purpose of the present paper is to summarize and evaluate the current evidence for the risk/benefit analysis of SSRI use in human pregnancy. The literature has been inconsistent. Although most studies have not shown an increase in the overall risk of major malformations, several studies have suggested that SSRIs may be associated with a small increased risk for cardiovascular malformations. Others have noted associations between SSRIs and specific types of rare major malformations. In some studies, there appears to be a small increased risk for miscarriages, which may be associated with the underlying maternal condition. Neonatal effects have been described in up to 30% of neonates exposed to SSRIs late in pregnancy. Persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn has also been described with an absolute risk of <1%. The risk associated with treatment discontinuation, for example, higher frequency of relapse and increased risk of preterm delivery, should also be considered. The overall benefit of treatment seems to outweigh the potential risks.

  2. The spiritual brain: selective cortical lesions modulate human self-transcendence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urgesi, Cosimo; Aglioti, Salvatore M; Skrap, Miran; Fabbro, Franco

    2010-02-11

    The predisposition of human beings toward spiritual feeling, thinking, and behaviors is measured by a supposedly stable personality trait called self-transcendence. Although a few neuroimaging studies suggest that neural activation of a large fronto-parieto-temporal network may underpin a variety of spiritual experiences, information on the causative link between such a network and spirituality is lacking. Combining pre- and post-neurosurgery personality assessment with advanced brain-lesion mapping techniques, we found that selective damage to left and right inferior posterior parietal regions induced a specific increase of self-transcendence. Therefore, modifications of neural activity in temporoparietal areas may induce unusually fast modulations of a stable personality trait related to transcendental self-referential awareness. These results hint at the active, crucial role of left and right parietal systems in determining self-transcendence and cast new light on the neurobiological bases of altered spiritual and religious attitudes and behaviors in neurological and mental disorders. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Expression of Selected Markers in Immunohistochemical Diagnosis of Canine and Human Testicular Tumours

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ciaputa Rafał

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Immunohistochemical profiles of the most common canine testicular tumours, including the Leydig cell tumours, seminomas, and Sertoli cell tumours were analysed, and the results were compared with those obtained in the corresponding types of human testicular neoplasms. The expressions of vimentin, von Willebrand factor (FVIII, chromogranin A, synaptophysin, and MCM3 were quantified. In the case of Sertoli cell tumours, only canine ones were analysed, since this type of tumour is very rarely diagnosed in men. The expression of the analysed proteins in the testicular tumours was similar. The von Willebrand factor exhibited the strongest expression in Leydig cell tumours in dogs and men, while vimentin was expressed more strongly in dogs (96.7% had an intensity at +++ than in men (62.5% had +++ in the Leydigioma. The immunoexpression of MCM3 in seminomas was high in both men and dogs – 90% +++ and 100% +++ respectively. The lack of chromogranin A and synaptophysin was observed in almost 100% of seminomas in men and dogs. This differed from the results obtained for Leydigioma, where chromogranin A was expressed in 70% of dogs at +++ and in 100% of men at ++++. The results may indicate that the antibodies were selected correctly. Their analysis and interpretation provides valuable information concerning the nature of the studied tumours.

  4. Selective attention reduces physiological noise in the external ear canals of humans. II: Visual attention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Kyle P.; Pasanen, Edward G.; McFadden, Dennis

    2014-01-01

    Human subjects performed in several behavioral conditions requiring, or not requiring, selective attention to visual stimuli. Specifically, the attentional task was to recognize strings of digits that had been presented visually. A nonlinear version of the stimulus-frequency otoacoustic emission (SFOAE), called the nSFOAE, was collected during the visual presentation of the digits. The segment of the physiological response discussed here occurred during brief silent periods immediately following the SFOAE-evoking stimuli. For all subjects tested, the physiological-noise magnitudes were substantially weaker (less noisy) during the tasks requiring the most visual attention. Effect sizes for the differences were >2.0. Our interpretation is that cortico-olivo influences adjusted the magnitude of efferent activation during the SFOAE-evoking stimulation depending upon the attention task in effect, and then that magnitude of efferent activation persisted throughout the silent period where it also modulated the physiological noise present. Because the results were highly similar to those obtained when the behavioral conditions involved auditory attention, similar mechanisms appear to operate both across modalities and within modalities. Supplementary measurements revealed that the efferent activation was spectrally global, as it was for auditory attention. PMID:24732070

  5. Selective susceptibility to nanosecond pulsed electric field (nsPEF) across different human cell types.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gianulis, Elena C; Labib, Chantelle; Saulis, Gintautas; Novickij, Vitalij; Pakhomova, Olga N; Pakhomov, Andrei G

    2017-05-01

    Tumor ablation by nanosecond pulsed electric fields (nsPEF) is an emerging therapeutic modality. We compared nsPEF cytotoxicity for human cell lines of cancerous (IMR-32, Hep G2, HT-1080, and HPAF-II) and non-cancerous origin (BJ and MRC-5) under strictly controlled and identical conditions. Adherent cells were uniformly treated by 300-ns PEF (0-2000 pulses, 1.8 kV/cm, 50 Hz) on indium tin oxide-covered glass coverslips, using the same media and serum. Cell survival plotted against the number of pulses displayed three distinct regions (initial resistivity, logarithmic survival decline, and residual resistivity) for all tested cell types, but with differences in LD 50 spanning as much as nearly 80-fold. The non-cancerous cells were less sensitive than IMR-32 neuroblastoma cells but more vulnerable than the other cancers tested. The cytotoxic efficiency showed no apparent correlation with cell or nuclear size, cell morphology, metabolism level, or the extent of membrane disruption by nsPEF. Increasing pulse duration to 9 µs (0.75 kV/cm, 5 Hz) produced a different selectivity pattern, suggesting that manipulation of PEF parameters can, at least for certain cancers, overcome their resistance to nsPEF ablation. Identifying mechanisms and cell markers of differential nsPEF susceptibility will critically contribute to the proper choice and outcome of nsPEF ablation therapies.

  6. Comparative evaluation of human heat stress indices on selected hospital admissions in Sydney, Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldie, James; Alexander, Lisa; Lewis, Sophie C; Sherwood, Steven

    2017-08-01

    To find appropriate regression model specifications for counts of the daily hospital admissions of a Sydney cohort and determine which human heat stress indices best improve the models' fit. We built parent models of eight daily counts of admission records using weather station observations, census population estimates and public holiday data. We added heat stress indices; models with lower Akaike Information Criterion scores were judged a better fit. Five of the eight parent models demonstrated adequate fit. Daily maximum Simplified Wet Bulb Globe Temperature (sWBGT) consistently improved fit more than most other indices; temperature and heatwave indices also modelled some health outcomes well. Humidity and heat-humidity indices better fit counts of patients who died following admission. Maximum sWBGT is an ideal measure of heat stress for these types of Sydney hospital admissions. Simple temperature indices are a good fallback where a narrower range of conditions is investigated. Implications for public health: This study confirms the importance of selecting appropriate heat stress indices for modelling. Epidemiologists projecting Sydney hospital admissions should use maximum sWBGT as a common measure of heat stress. Health organisations interested in short-range forecasting may prefer simple temperature indices. © 2017 The Authors.

  7. Robust selectivity to two-object images in human visual cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agam, Yigal; Liu, Hesheng; Papanastassiou, Alexander; Buia, Calin; Golby, Alexandra J.; Madsen, Joseph R.; Kreiman, Gabriel

    2010-01-01

    SUMMARY We can recognize objects in a fraction of a second in spite of the presence of other objects [1–3]. The responses in macaque areas V4 and inferior temporal cortex [4–15] to a neuron’s preferred stimuli are typically suppressed by the addition of a second object within the receptive field (see however [16, 17]). How can this suppression be reconciled with rapid visual recognition in complex scenes? One option is that certain “special categories” are unaffected by other objects [18] but this leaves the problem unsolved for other categories. Another possibility is that serial attentional shifts help ameliorate the problem of distractor objects [19–21]. Yet, psychophysical studies [1–3], scalp recordings [1] and neurophysiological recordings [14, 16, 22–24], suggest that the initial sweep of visual processing contains a significant amount of information. We recorded intracranial field potentials in human visual cortex during presentation of flashes of two-object images. Visual selectivity from temporal cortex during the initial ~200 ms was largely robust to the presence of other objects. We could train linear decoders on the responses to isolated objects and decode information in two-object images. These observations are compatible with parallel, hierarchical and feed-forward theories of rapid visual recognition [25] and may provide a neural substrate to begin to unravel rapid recognition in natural scenes. PMID:20417105

  8. Effect of pasteurization on selected immune components of donated human breast milk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewaschuk, J B; Unger, S; O'Connor, D L; Stone, D; Harvey, S; Clandinin, M T; Field, C J

    2011-09-01

    Pasteurized, donated milk is increasingly provided to preterm infants in the absence of mother's own milk. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of pasteurization on the concentration of selected components in donated human breast milk. Donated milk from 34 mothers was pooled into 17 distinct batches (4 mothers per batch). Aliquots of each batch were then Holder pasteurized (62.5 °C for 30 min). Interferon-γ (IFN-γ), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), IL-2, IL-4, IL-5, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12p70 and IL-13 were measured in a multiplex enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF), heparin-binding epidermal-like growth factor (HB-EGF) and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) were measured by ELISA. Lipids were assessed by gas chromatography and gangliosides by the resorcinol-HCl reaction. IFN-γ, TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-10 and HGF were significantly reduced by pasteurization (PPasteurization significantly reduced the concentration of several immunoactive compounds present in breast milk, but did not have an impact on others.

  9. No effect of Osteoset, a bone graft substitute, on bone healing in humans: a prospective randomized double-blind study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petruskevicius, Juozas; Nielsen, Mette Strange; Kaalund, Søren

    2002-01-01

    We studied the effects of a newly marketed bone substitute, Osteoset, on bone healing in a tibial defect in humans. 20 patients undergoing an ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) reconstruction with bone-patella tendon-bone graft were block-randomized into 2 groups of 10 each. In the treatment group......, the tibial defect was filled manually with Osteoset pellets, in the control group the defect was left empty. CTs of the defect were taken on the first day after the operation, 6 weeks, 3 and 6 months postoperatively. We found about the same amount of bone in the defect in the Osteoset and control groups...... after 6 weeks, 3, and 6 months. In the control group, but not in the Osteoset group, the bone volume increased from 6 weeks to 3 months. The Osteoset pellets were almost resorbed after 6 weeks....

  10. Effect of Guava in Blood Glucose and Lipid Profile in Healthy Human Subjects: A Randomized Controlled Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rakavi, R; Mangaraj, Manaswini

    2016-01-01

    Introduction The fruit of Psidium guajava (P.guajava) is known to contain free sugars yet the fruit juice showed hypoglycaemic effect. Hypoglycaemic activity of guava leaves has been well documented but not for guava fruit. Aim So we aimed to evaluate the effect of ripe guava (with peel and without peel) fruit supplementation on blood glucose and lipid profile in healthy human subjects. Materials and Methods Randomized Controlled study undertaken in: 1) Baseline; 2) 6 weeks supplementation phase. Forty five healthy MBBS students were included and randomly enrolled into Group A, Group B and Group C. In Baseline phase: Fasting Plasma Glucose (FPG) and serum lipid profile was done in all 3 groups. Group A were supplemented with 400g of ripe guava with peel and group B without peel, for 6 weeks. Rest 15 treated as control i.e., Group C. Result Supplementation of ripe guava fruit with peel reduced BMI as well as blood pressure (pguava pulp supplementation was not significant. Serum Total cholesterol, Triglycerides and Low Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol (LDLc) levels decreased significantly (pguava pulp without peel may have a favourable effect on lipid levels and blood sugar as well. Conclusion Guava fruit without peel is more effective in lowering blood sugar as well as serum total cholesterol, triglycerides and LDLc. It increases HDLc levels also. PMID:27790420

  11. Randomized, double-blinded clinical trial for human norovirus inactivation in oysters by high hydrostatic pressure processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leon, Juan S; Kingsley, David H; Montes, Julia S; Richards, Gary P; Lyon, G Marshall; Abdulhafid, Gwen M; Seitz, Scot R; Fernandez, Marina L; Teunis, Peter F; Flick, George J; Moe, Christine L

    2011-08-01

    Contamination of oysters with human noroviruses (HuNoV) constitutes a human health risk and may lead to severe economic losses in the shellfish industry. There is a need to identify a technology that can inactivate HuNoV in oysters. In this study, we conducted a randomized, double-blinded clinical trial to assess the effect of high hydrostatic pressure processing (HPP) on Norwalk virus (HuNoV genogroup I.1) inactivation in virus-seeded oysters ingested by subjects. Forty-four healthy, positive-secretor adults were divided into three study phases. Subjects in each phase were randomized into control and intervention groups. Subjects received Norwalk virus (8FIIb, 1.0 × 10(4) genomic equivalent copies) in artificially seeded oysters with or without HPP treatment (400 MPa at 25°C, 600 MPa at 6°C, or 400 MPa at 6°C for 5 min). HPP at 600 MPa, but not 400 MPa (at 6° or 25°C), completely inactivated HuNoV in seeded oysters and resulted in no HuNoV infection among these subjects, as determined by reverse transcription-PCR detection of HuNoV RNA in subjects' stool or vomitus samples. Interestingly, a white blood cell (granulocyte) shift was identified in 92% of the infected subjects and was significantly associated with infection (P = 0.0014). In summary, these data suggest that HPP is effective at inactivating HuNoV in contaminated whole oysters and suggest a potential intervention to inactivate infectious HuNoV in oysters for the commercial shellfish industry.

  12. "Open mesh" or "strictly selected population" recruitment? The experience of the randomized controlled MeMeMe trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cortellini M

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Mauro Cortellini, Franco Berrino, Patrizia Pasanisi Department of Preventive & Predictive Medicine, Foundation IRCCS National Cancer Institute of Milan, Milan, Italy Abstract: Among randomized controlled trials (RCTs, trials for primary prevention require large samples and long follow-up to obtain a high-quality outcome; therefore the recruitment process and the drop-out rates largely dictate the adequacy of the results. We are conducting a Phase III trial on persons with metabolic syndrome to test the hypothesis that comprehensive lifestyle changes and/or metformin treatment prevents age-related chronic diseases (the MeMeMe trial, EudraCT number: 2012-005427-32, also registered on ClinicalTrials.gov [NCT02960711]. Here, we briefly analyze and discuss the reasons which may lead to participants dropping out from trials. In our experience, participants may back out of a trial for different reasons. Drug-induced side effects are certainly the most compelling reason. But what are the other reasons, relating to the participants’ perception of the progress of the trial which led them to withdraw after randomization? What about the time-dependent drop-out rate in primary prevention trials? The primary outcome of this analysis is the point of drop-out from trial, defined as the time from the randomization date to the withdrawal date. Survival functions were non-parametrically estimated using the product-limit estimator. The curves were statistically compared using the log-rank test (P=0.64, not significant. Researchers involved in primary prevention RCTs seem to have to deal with the paradox of the proverbial “short blanket syndrome”. Recruiting only highly motivated candidates might be useful for the smooth progress of the trial but it may lead to a very low enrollment rate. On the other hand, what about enrolling all the eligible subjects without considering their motivation? This might boost the enrollment rate, but it can lead to biased

  13. "Open mesh" or "strictly selected population" recruitment? The experience of the randomized controlled MeMeMe trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortellini, Mauro; Berrino, Franco; Pasanisi, Patrizia

    2017-01-01

    Among randomized controlled trials (RCTs), trials for primary prevention require large samples and long follow-up to obtain a high-quality outcome; therefore the recruitment process and the drop-out rates largely dictate the adequacy of the results. We are conducting a Phase III trial on persons with metabolic syndrome to test the hypothesis that comprehensive lifestyle changes and/or metformin treatment prevents age-related chronic diseases (the MeMeMe trial, EudraCT number: 2012-005427-32, also registered on ClinicalTrials.gov [NCT02960711]). Here, we briefly analyze and discuss the reasons which may lead to participants dropping out from trials. In our experience, participants may back out of a trial for different reasons. Drug-induced side effects are certainly the most compelling reason. But what are the other reasons, relating to the participants' perception of the progress of the trial which led them to withdraw after randomization? What about the time-dependent drop-out rate in primary prevention trials? The primary outcome of this analysis is the point of drop-out from trial, defined as the time from the randomization date to the withdrawal date. Survival functions were non-parametrically estimated using the product-limit estimator. The curves were statistically compared using the log-rank test ( P =0.64, not significant). Researchers involved in primary prevention RCTs seem to have to deal with the paradox of the proverbial "short blanket syndrome". Recruiting only highly motivated candidates might be useful for the smooth progress of the trial but it may lead to a very low enrollment rate. On the other hand, what about enrolling all the eligible subjects without considering their motivation? This might boost the enrollment rate, but it can lead to biased results on account of large proportions of drop-outs. Our experience suggests that participants do not change their mind depending on the allocation group (intervention or control). There is no single

  14. Hybrid Lentivirus-transposon Vectors With a Random Integration Profile in Human Cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Staunstrup, Nicklas H; Moldt, Brian; Mátés, Lajos

    2009-01-01

    Gene delivery by human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1)-based lentiviral vectors (LVs) is efficient, but genomic integration of the viral DNA is strongly biased toward transcriptionally active loci resulting in an increased risk of insertional mutagenesis in gene therapy protocols. Nonviral...... Sleeping Beauty (SB) transposon vectors have a significantly safer insertion profile, but efficient delivery into relevant cell/tissue types is a limitation. In an attempt to combine the favorable features of the two vector systems we established a novel hybrid vector technology based on SB transposase......-mediated insertion of lentiviral DNA circles generated during transduction of target cells with integrase (IN)-defective LVs (IDLVs). By construction of a lentivirus-transposon hybrid vector allowing transposition exclusively from circular viral DNA substrates, we demonstrate that SB transposase added in trans...

  15. Evolution of Randomized Trials in Advanced/Metastatic Soft Tissue Sarcoma: End Point Selection, Surrogacy, and Quality of Reporting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zer, Alona; Prince, Rebecca M; Amir, Eitan; Abdul Razak, Albiruni

    2016-05-01

    Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in soft tissue sarcoma (STS) have used varying end points. The surrogacy of intermediate end points, such as progression-free survival (PFS), response rate (RR), and 3-month and 6-month PFS (3moPFS and 6moPFS) with overall survival (OS), remains unknown. The quality of efficacy and toxicity reporting in these studies is also uncertain. A systematic review of systemic therapy RCTs in STS was performed. Surrogacy between intermediate end points and OS was explored using weighted linear regression for the hazard ratio for OS with the hazard ratio for PFS or the odds ratio for RR, 3moPFS, and 6moPFS. The quality of reporting for efficacy and toxicity was also evaluated. Fifty-two RCTs published between 1974 and 2014, comprising 9,762 patients, met the inclusion criteria. There were significant correlations between PFS and OS (R = 0.61) and between RR and OS (R = 0.51). Conversely, there were nonsignificant correlations between 3moPFS and 6moPFS with OS. A reduction in the use of RR as the primary end point was observed over time, favoring time-based events (P for trend = .02). In 14% of RCTs, the primary end point was not met, but the study was reported as being positive. Toxicity was comprehensively reported in 47% of RCTs, whereas 14% inadequately reported toxicity. In advanced STS, PFS and RR seem to be appropriate surrogates for OS. There is poor correlation between OS and both 3moPFS and 6moPFS. As such, caution is urged with the use of these as primary end points in randomized STS trials. The quality of toxicity reporting and interpretation of results is suboptimal. © 2016 by American Society of Clinical Oncology.

  16. Selective analysis of human serum albumin based on SEC-ICP-MS after labelling with iophenoxic acid

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dersch, Julie Maria; Nguyen, Tam T. T. N.; Østergaard, Jesper

    2015-01-01

    Human serum albumin (HSA) is the most abundant protein in the human plasma. HSA has several physiological roles in the human body, including storage and transport. Owing to the predominance of albumin in plasma, HSA is often involved in the protein binding of drugs. The aim of this work was to de...... plasma and urine samples and for studying the binding of cisplatin to proteins in the human plasma.......Human serum albumin (HSA) is the most abundant protein in the human plasma. HSA has several physiological roles in the human body, including storage and transport. Owing to the predominance of albumin in plasma, HSA is often involved in the protein binding of drugs. The aim of this work...... was to develop a selective, quantitative method for determining albumin in plasma with the purpose of clarifying the fate of metal-based drugs in biological systems. The method can also be applied for determination of urine albumin, which is of relevance in diagnostics of kidney disease. A selective method...

  17. Quantitation of Murine Stroma and Selective Purification of the Human Tumor Component of Patient-Derived Xenografts for Genomic Analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina E Schneeberger

    Full Text Available Patient-derived xenograft (PDX mouse models are increasingly used for preclinical therapeutic testing of human cancer. A limitation in molecular and genetic characterization of PDX tumors is the presence of integral murine stroma. This is particularly problematic for genomic sequencing of PDX models. Rapid and dependable approaches for quantitating stromal content and purifying the malignant human component of these tumors are needed. We used a recently developed technique exploiting species-specific polymerase chain reaction (PCR amplicon length (ssPAL differences to define the fractional composition of murine and human DNA, which was proportional to the fractional composition of cells in a series of lung cancer PDX lines. We compared four methods of human cancer cell isolation: fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS, an immunomagnetic mouse cell depletion (MCD approach, and two distinct EpCAM-based immunomagnetic positive selection methods. We further analyzed DNA extracted from the resulting enriched human cancer cells by targeted sequencing using a clinically validated multi-gene panel. Stromal content varied widely among tumors of similar histology, but appeared stable over multiple serial tumor passages of an individual model. FACS and MCD were superior to either positive selection approach, especially in cases of high stromal content, and consistently allowed high quality human-specific genomic profiling. ssPAL is a dependable approach to quantitation of murine stromal content, and MCD is a simple, efficient, and high yield approach to human cancer cell isolation for genomic analysis of PDX tumors.

  18. Speed of human tooth movement in growers and non-growers: Selection of applied stress matters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwasaki, L R; Liu, Y; Liu, H; Nickel, J C

    2017-06-01

    To test that the speed of tooth translation is not affected by stress magnitude and growth status. Advanced Education Orthodontic clinics at the Universities of Nebraska Medical Center and Missouri-Kansas City. Forty-six consenting subjects with orthodontic treatment plans involving maxillary first premolar extractions. This randomized split-mouth study used segmental mechanics with definitive posterior anchorage and individual vertical-loop maxillary canine retraction appliances and measured three-dimensional tooth movements. Height and cephalometric superimposition changes determined growing (G) and non-growing (NG) subjects. Subjects were appointed for 9-11 visits over 84 days for maxillary dental impressions to measure three-dimensional tooth movement and to ensure retraction forces were continuously applied via calibrated nitinol coil springs. Springs were custom selected to apply two different stresses of 4, 13, 26, 52 or 78 kPa to maxillary canines in each subject. Statistical analyses (α=0.050) included ANOVA, effect size (partial η 2 ) and Tukey's Honest Significant Difference (HSD) and two-group t tests. Distolateral translation speeds were 0.034±0.015, 0.047±0.019, 0.066±0.025, 0.068±0.016 and 0.079±0.030 mm/d for 4, 13, 26, 52 and 78 kPa, respectively. Stress significantly affected speed and partial η 2 =0.376. Overall, more distopalatal rotation was shown by teeth moved by 78 kPa (18.03±9.50º) compared to other stresses (3.86±6.83º), and speeds were significantly higher (P=.001) in G (0.062±0.026 mm/d) than NG subjects (0.041±0.019 mm/d). Stress magnitude and growth status significantly affected the speed of tooth translation. Optimal applied stresses were 26-52 kPa, and overall speeds were 1.5-fold faster in G compared to NG subjects. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Organic Ferroelectric-Based 1T1T Random Access Memory Cell Employing a Common Dielectric Layer Overcoming the Half-Selection Problem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Qiang; Wang, Hanlin; Ni, Zhenjie; Liu, Jie; Zhen, Yonggang; Zhang, Xiaotao; Jiang, Lang; Li, Rongjin; Dong, Huanli; Hu, Wenping

    2017-09-01

    Organic electronics based on poly(vinylidenefluoride/trifluoroethylene) (P(VDF-TrFE)) dielectric is facing great challenges in flexible circuits. As one indispensable part of integrated circuits, there is an urgent demand for low-cost and easy-fabrication nonvolatile memory devices. A breakthrough is made on a novel ferroelectric random access memory cell (1T1T FeRAM cell) consisting of one selection transistor and one ferroelectric memory transistor in order to overcome the half-selection problem. Unlike complicated manufacturing using multiple dielectrics, this system simplifies 1T1T FeRAM cell fabrication using one common dielectric. To achieve this goal, a strategy for semiconductor/insulator (S/I) interface modulation is put forward and applied to nonhysteretic selection transistors with high performances for driving or addressing purposes. As a result, high hole mobility of 3.81 cm 2 V -1 s -1 (average) for 2,6-diphenylanthracene (DPA) and electron mobility of 0.124 cm 2 V -1 s -1 (average) for N,N'-1H,1H-perfluorobutyl dicyanoperylenecarboxydiimide (PDI-FCN 2 ) are obtained in selection transistors. In this work, we demonstrate this technology's potential for organic ferroelectric-based pixelated memory module fabrication. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  20. Varying levels of difficulty index of skills-test items randomly selected by examinees on the Korean emergency medical technician licensing examination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bongyeun Koh

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: The goal of this study was to characterize the difficulty index of the items in the skills test components of the class I and II Korean emergency medical technician licensing examination (KEMTLE, which requires examinees to select items randomly. Methods: The results of 1,309 class I KEMTLE examinations and 1,801 class II KEMTLE examinations in 2013 were subjected to analysis. Items from the basic and advanced skills test sections of the KEMTLE were compared to determine whether some were significantly more difficult than others. Results: In the class I KEMTLE, all 4 of the items on the basic skills test showed significant variation in difficulty index (P<0.01, as well as 4 of the 5 items on the advanced skills test (P<0.05. In the class II KEMTLE, 4 of the 5 items on the basic skills test showed significantly different difficulty index (P<0.01, as well as all 3 of the advanced skills test items (P<0.01. Conclusion: In the skills test components of the class I and II KEMTLE, the procedure in which examinees randomly select questions should be revised to require examinees to respond to a set of fixed items in order to improve the reliability of the national licensing examination.

  1. Varying levels of difficulty index of skills-test items randomly selected by examinees on the Korean emergency medical technician licensing examination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koh, Bongyeun; Hong, Sunggi; Kim, Soon-Sim; Hyun, Jin-Sook; Baek, Milye; Moon, Jundong; Kwon, Hayran; Kim, Gyoungyong; Min, Seonggi; Kang, Gu-Hyun

    2016-01-01

    The goal of this study was to characterize the difficulty index of the items in the skills test components of the class I and II Korean emergency medical technician licensing examination (KEMTLE), which requires examinees to select items randomly. The results of 1,309 class I KEMTLE examinations and 1,801 class II KEMTLE examinations in 2013 were subjected to analysis. Items from the basic and advanced skills test sections of the KEMTLE were compared to determine whether some were significantly more difficult than others. In the class I KEMTLE, all 4 of the items on the basic skills test showed significant variation in difficulty index (P<0.01), as well as 4 of the 5 items on the advanced skills test (P<0.05). In the class II KEMTLE, 4 of the 5 items on the basic skills test showed significantly different difficulty index (P<0.01), as well as all 3 of the advanced skills test items (P<0.01). In the skills test components of the class I and II KEMTLE, the procedure in which examinees randomly select questions should be revised to require examinees to respond to a set of fixed items in order to improve the reliability of the national licensing examination.

  2. Intraileal casein infusion increases plasma concentrations of amino acids in humans: A randomized cross over trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ripken, Dina; van Avesaat, Mark; Troost, Freddy J; Masclee, Ad A; Witkamp, Renger F; Hendriks, Henk F

    2017-02-01

    Activation of the ileal brake by casein induces satiety signals and reduces energy intake. However, adverse effects of intraileal casein administration have not been studied before. These adverse effects may include impaired amino acid digestion, absorption and immune activation. To investigate the effects of intraileal infusion of native casein on plasma amino acid appearance, immune activation and gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms. A randomized single-blind cross over study was performed in 13 healthy subjects (6 male; mean age 26 ± 2.9 years; mean body mass index 22.8 ± 0.4 kg/m -2 ), who were intubated with a naso-ileal feeding catheter. Thirty minutes after intake of a standardized breakfast, participants received an ileal infusion, containing either control (C) consisting of saline, a low-dose (17.2 kcal) casein (LP) or a high-dose (51.7 kcal) of casein (HP) over a period of 90 min. Blood samples were collected for analysis of amino acids (AAs), C-reactive protein (CRP), pro-inflammatory cytokines and oxylipins at regular intervals. Furthermore, GI symptom questionnaires were collected before, during and after ileal infusion. None of the subjects reported any GI symptoms before, during or after ileal infusion of C, LP and HP. Plasma concentrations of all AAs analyzed were significantly increased after infusion of HP as compared to C (p casein, respectively. Ileal casein infusion did not affect plasma concentrations of CRP, IL-6, IL-8, IL-1β and TNF-α. Infusion of HP resulted in a decreased concentration of 11,12-dihydroxyeicosatrienoic acid whereas none of the other oxylipins analyzed were affected. A single intraileal infusion of native casein results in a concentration and time dependent increase of AAs in plasma, suggesting an effective digestion and absorption of AAs present in casein. Also, ileal infusion did not result in immune activation nor in GI symptoms. CLINICALTRIALS.GOV: NCT01509469. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier

  3. Selection of drug resistant mutants from random library of Plasmodium falciparum dihydrofolate reductase in Plasmodium berghei model

    OpenAIRE

    Tipsuwan, Wachiraporn; Srichairatanakool, Somdet; Kamchonwongpaisan, Sumalee; Yuthavong, Yongyuth; Uthaipibull, Chairat

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Background The prevalence of drug resistance amongst the human malaria Plasmodium species has most commonly been associated with genomic mutation within the parasites. This phenomenon necessitates evolutionary predictive studies of possible resistance mutations, which may occur when a new drug is introduced. Therefore, identification of possible new Plasmodium falciparum dihydrofolate reductase (PfDHFR) mutants that confer resistance to antifolate drugs is essential in the process of...

  4. Effects of choice architecture and chef-enhanced meals on the selection and consumption of healthier school foods: a randomized clinical trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Juliana F W; Richardson, Scott A; Cluggish, Sarah A; Parker, Ellen; Catalano, Paul J; Rimm, Eric B

    2015-05-01

    Little is known about the long-term effect of a chef-enhanced menu on healthier food selection and consumption in school lunchrooms. In addition, it remains unclear if extended exposure to other strategies to promote healthier foods (eg, choice architecture) also improves food selection or consumption. To evaluate the short- and long-term effects of chef-enhanced meals and extended exposure to choice architecture on healthier school food selection and consumption. A school-based randomized clinical trial was conducted during the 2011-2012 school year among 14 elementary and middle schools in 2 urban, low-income school districts (intent-to-treat analysis). Included in the study were 2638 students in grades 3 through 8 attending participating schools (38.4% of eligible participants). Schools were first randomized to receive a professional chef to improve school meal palatability (chef schools) or to a delayed intervention (control group). To assess the effect of choice architecture (smart café), all schools after 3 months were then randomized to the smart café intervention or to the control group. School food selection was recorded, and consumption was measured using plate waste methods. After 3 months, vegetable selection increased in chef vs control schools (odds ratio [OR], 1.75; 95% CI, 1.36-2.24), but there was no effect on the selection of other components or on meal consumption. After long-term or extended exposure to the chef or smart café intervention, fruit selection increased in the chef (OR, 3.08; 95% CI, 2.23-4.25), smart café (OR, 1.45; 95% CI, 1.13-1.87), and chef plus smart café (OR, 3.10; 95% CI, 2.26-4.25) schools compared with the control schools, and consumption increased in the chef schools (OR, 0.17; 95% CI, 0.03-0.30 cups/d). Vegetable selection increased in the chef (OR, 2.54; 95% CI, 1.83-3.54), smart café (OR, 1.91; 95% CI, 1.46-2.50), and chef plus smart café schools (OR, 7.38, 95% CI, 5.26-10.35) compared with the control schools

  5. N-Linked Glycosylation is an Important Parameter for Optimal Selection of Cell Lines Producing Biopharmaceutical Human IgG

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Berkel, Patrick H. C.; Gerritsen, Jolanda; Perdok, Gerrard; Valbjorn, Jesper; Vink, Tom; van de Winkel, Jan G. J.; Parren, Paul W. H. I.

    2009-01-01

    We studied the variations in N-linked glycosylation of human IgG molecules derived from 105 different stable cell lines each expressing one of the six different antibodies. Antibody expression was based on glutamine synthetase selection technology in suspension growing CHO-KISV cells. The glycans

  6. Testing the prediction from sexual selection of a positive genetic correlation between human mate preferences and corresponding traits

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verweij, K.J.H.; Burri, A.V.; Zietsch, B.P.

    2014-01-01

    Sexual selection can cause evolution in traits that affect mating success, and it has thus been implicated in the evolution of human physical and behavioural traits that influence attractiveness. We use a large sample of identical and nonidentical female twins to test the prediction from mate choice

  7. Recruitment and Selection Strategies in Optometric Education towards Addressing Human Resource Disparities in Sub-Saharan Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moodley, V. R.; Loughman, James; Naidoo, K. S.

    2015-01-01

    The dire need for eye care services and a dearth of human resources (HR) in sub-Saharan Africa motivated the setting up of new optometry programmes. However, to make a meaningful impact, geographical, gender, economic and educational disparities must additionally be addressed. A qualitative study utilizing purposive sampling to select academic…

  8. Selective downregulation of mitochondrial electron transport chain activity and increased oxidative stress in human atrial fibrillation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emelyanova, Larisa; Ashary, Zain; Cosic, Milanka; Negmadjanov, Ulugbek; Ross, Gracious; Rizvi, Farhan; Olet, Susan; Kress, David; Sra, Jasbir; Tajik, A Jamil; Holmuhamedov, Ekhson L; Shi, Yang; Jahangir, Arshad

    2016-07-01

    Mitochondria are critical for maintaining normal cardiac function, and a deficit in mitochondrial energetics can lead to the development of the substrate that promotes atrial fibrillation (AF) and its progression. However, the link between mitochondrial dysfunction and AF in humans is still not fully defined. The aim of this study was to elucidate differences in the functional activity of mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) complexes and oxidative stress in right atrial tissue from patients without (non-AF) and with AF (AF) who were undergoing open-heart surgery and were not significantly different for age, sex, major comorbidities, and medications. The overall functional activity of the electron transport chain (ETC), NADH:O2 oxidoreductase activity, was reduced by 30% in atrial tissue from AF compared with non-AF patients. This was predominantly due to a selective reduction in complex I (0.06 ± 0.007 vs. 0.09 ± 0.006 nmol·min(-1)·citrate synthase activity(-1), P = 0.02) and II (0.11 ± 0.012 vs. 0.16 ± 0.012 nmol·min(-1)·citrate synthase activity(-1), P = 0.003) functional activity in AF patients. Conversely, complex V activity was significantly increased in AF patients (0.21 ± 0.027 vs. 0.12 ± 0.01 nmol·min(-1)·citrate synthase activity(-1), P = 0.005). In addition, AF patients exhibited a higher oxidative stress with increased production of mitochondrial superoxide (73 ± 17 vs. 11 ± 2 arbitrary units, P = 0.03) and 4-hydroxynonenal level (77.64 ± 30.2 vs. 9.83 ± 2.83 ng·mg(-1) protein, P = 0.048). Our findings suggest that AF is associated with selective downregulation of ETC activity and increased oxidative stress that can contribute to the progression of the substrate for AF. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  9. Inhibition selectivity of grapefruit juice components on human cytochromes P450.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tassaneeyakul, W; Guo, L Q; Fukuda, K; Ohta, T; Yamazoe, Y

    2000-06-15

    Five compounds including furanocoumarin monomers (bergamottin, 6', 7'-dihydroxybergamottin (DHB)), furanocoumarin dimers (4-¿¿6-hydroxy-71-¿(1-hydroxy-1-methyl)ethyl-4-methyl-6-(7-oxo-7H- furo¿3,2-g1benzopyran-4-yl)-4-hexenyl]oxy]-3,7-dimethyl- 2-octenyl]oxy]-7H-furo[3,2-g]¿1benzopyran-7-one (GF-I-1) and 4-¿¿6-hydroxy-7¿¿4-methyl-1-(1-methylethenyl)-6-(7-oxo-7H-furo¿3, 2-g1benzopyran-4-yl)-4-hexenylŏxy-3, 7-dimethyl-2-octenylŏxy-7H-furo¿3,2-g1benzopyran-7-one (GF-I-4)), and a sesquiterpene nootkatone have been isolated from grapefruit juice and screened for their inhibitory effects toward human cytochrome P450 (P450) forms using selective substrate probes. Addition of ethyl acetate extract of grapefruit juice into an incubation mixture resulted in decreased activities of CYP3A4, CYP1A2, CYP2C9, and CYP2D6. All four furanocoumarins clearly inhibited CYP3A4-catalyzed nifedipine oxidation in concentration- and time-dependent manners, suggesting that these compounds are mechanism-based inhibitors of CYP3A4. Of the furanocoumarins investigated, furanocoumarin dimers, GF-I-1 and GF-I-4, were the most potent inhibitors of CYP3A4. Inhibitor concentration required for half-maximal rate of inactivation (K(I)) values for bergamottin, DHB, GF-I-1, and GF-I-4 were calculated, respectively, as 40.00, 5. 56, 0.31, and 0.13 microM, whereas similar values were observed on their inactivation rate constant at infinite concentration of inhibitor (k(inact), 0.05-0.08 min(-1)). Apparent selectivity toward CYP3A4 does occur with the furanocoumarin dimers. In contrast, bergamottin showed rather stronger inhibitory effect on CYP1A2, CYP2C9, CYP2C19, and CYP2D6 than on CYP3A4. DHB inhibited CYP3A4 and CYP1A2 activities at nearly equivalent potencies. Among P450 forms investigated, CYP2E1 was the least sensitive to the inhibitory effect of furanocoumarin components. A sesquiterpene nootkatone has no significant effect on P450 activities investigated except for CYP2A6 and CYP2C19

  10. Tanezumab: a selective humanized mAb for chronic lower back pain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Webb MP

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Michael P Webb,1 Erik M Helander,2 Bethany L Menard,2 Richard D Urman,3 Alan D Kaye2 1Department of Anesthesiology, North Shore Hospital, Auckland, New Zealand; 2Department of Anesthesiology, LSU School of Medicine, New Orleans, LA, USA; 3Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA Abstract: Chronic lower back pain is a significant disease that affects nearly 20% of the worldwide population. Along with hindering patients’ quality of life, chronic lower back pain is considered to be the second most common cause of disability among Americans. Treating chronic lower back pain is often a challenge for providers, especially in light of our current opioid epidemic. With this epidemic and an increased aging population, there is an imminent need for development of new pharmacologic therapeutic options, which are not only effective but also pose minimal adverse effects to the patient. With these considerations, a novel therapeutic agent called tanezumab has been developed and studied. Tanezumab is a humanized monoclonal immunoglobulin G2 antibody that works by inhibiting the binding of NGF to its receptors. NGF is involved in the function of sensory neurons and fibers involved in nociceptive transduction. It is commonly seen in excess in inflammatory joint conditions and in chronic pain patients. Nociceptors are dependent on NGF for growth and ongoing function. The inhibition of NGF binding to its receptors is a mechanism by which pain pathways can be interrupted. In this article, a number of recent randomized controlled trials are examined relating to the efficacy and safety of tanezumab in the treatment of chronic lower back pain. Although tanezumab was shown to be an effective pain modulator in major trials, several adverse effects were seen among different doses of the medication, one of which led to a clinical hold placed by the US Food and Drug

  11. A new approach towards biomarker selection in estimation of human exposure to chiral chemicals: a case study of mephedrone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castrignanò, Erika; Mardal, Marie; Rydevik, Axel; Miserez, Bram; Ramsey, John; Shine, Trevor; Pantoș, G Dan; Meyer, Markus R; Kasprzyk-Hordern, Barbara

    2017-11-02

    Wastewater-based epidemiology is an innovative approach to estimate public health status using biomarker analysis in wastewater. A new compound detected in wastewater can be a potential biomarker of an emerging trend in public health. However, it is currently difficult to select new biomarkers mainly due to limited human metabolism data. This manuscript presents a new framework, which enables the identification and selection of new biomarkers of human exposure to drugs with scarce or unknown human metabolism data. Mephedrone was targeted to elucidate the assessment of biomarkers for emerging drugs of abuse using a four-step analytical procedure. This framework consists of: (i) identification of possible metabolic biomarkers present in wastewater using an in-vivo study; (ii) verification of chiral signature of the target compound; (iii) confirmation of human metabolic residues in in-vivo/vitro studies and (iv) verification of stability of biomarkers in wastewater. Mephedrone was selected as a suitable biomarker due to its high stability profile in wastewater. Its enantiomeric profiling was studied for the first time in biological and environmental matrices, showing stereoselective metabolism of mephedrone in humans. Further biomarker candidates were also proposed for future investigation: 4'-carboxy-mephedrone, 4'-carboxy-normephedrone, 1-dihydro-mephedrone, 1-dihydro-normephedrone and 4'-hydroxy-normephedrone.

  12. Duloxetine inhibits effects of MDMA ("ecstasy" in vitro and in humans in a randomized placebo-controlled laboratory study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cédric M Hysek

    Full Text Available This study assessed the effects of the serotonin (5-HT and norepinephrine (NE transporter inhibitor duloxetine on the effects of 3,4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine (MDMA, ecstasy in vitro and in 16 healthy subjects. The clinical study used a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, four-session, crossover design. In vitro, duloxetine blocked the release of both 5-HT and NE by MDMA or by its metabolite 3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine from transmitter-loaded human cells expressing the 5-HT or NE transporter. In humans, duloxetine inhibited the effects of MDMA including elevations in circulating NE, increases in blood pressure and heart rate, and the subjective drug effects. Duloxetine inhibited the pharmacodynamic response to MDMA despite an increase in duloxetine-associated elevations in plasma MDMA levels. The findings confirm the important role of MDMA-induced 5-HT and NE release in the psychotropic effects of MDMA. Duloxetine may be useful in the treatment of psychostimulant dependence.Clinicaltrials.gov NCT00990067.

  13. Aneuploidy in immortalized human mesenchymal stem cells with non-random loss of chromosome 13 in culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeuchi, Masao; Takeuchi, Kikuko; Ozawa, Yutaka; Kohara, Akihiro; Mizusawa, Hiroshi

    2009-01-01

    Aneuploidy (an abnormal number of chromosomes) is commonly observed in most human cancer cells, highlighting the need to examine chromosomal instability in tumorigenesis. Previously, the immortalized human mesenchymal stem cell line UE6E7T-3 was shown to undergo a preferential loss of one copy of chromosome 13 after prolonged culture. Here, the loss of chromosome 13 was found to be caused by chromosome missegregation during mitosis, which involved unequal segregation, exclusion of the misaligned chromosome 13 on the metaphase plate, and trapping of chromosome 13 in the midbody region, as observed by fluorescence in situ hybridization. Near-diploid aneuploidy, not tetraploidy, was the direct result. The loss of chromosome 13 was non-random, and was detected by analysis of microsatellites and single nucleotide polymorphism-based loss of heterozygosity (LOH). Of the five microsatellite loci on chromosome 13, four loci showed microsatellite instability at an early stage in culture, and LOH was apparent at a late stage in culture. These results suggest that the microsatellite mutations cause changes in centromere integrity provoking loss of this chromosome in the UE6E7T-3 cell line. Thus, these results support the use of this cell line as a useful model for understanding the mechanism of aneuploid formation in cell cultures.

  14. [Cloning goat producing human lactoferrin with genetically modified donor cells selected by single or dual markers].

    Science.gov (United States)

    An, Liyou; Yuan, Yuguo; Yu, Baoli; Yang, Tingjia; Cheng, Yong

    2012-12-01

    We compared the efficiency of cloning goat using human lactoferrin (hLF) with genetically modified donor cells marked by single (Neo(r)) or double (Neo(r)/GFP) markers. Single marker expression vector (pBLC14) or dual markers expression vector (pAPLM) was delivered to goat fetal fibroblasts (GFF), and then the transgenic GFF was used as donor cells to produce transgenic goats. Respectively, 58.8% (20/34) and 86.7% (26/30) resistant cell lines confirmed the transgenic integration by PCR. Moreover, pAPLM cells lines were subcultured with several passages, only 20% (6/30) cell lines was observed fluorescence from each cell during the cell passage. Somatic cell nuclear transfer using the donor cells harbouring pBLC14 or pAPLM construct, resulting in a total of 806 reconstructed embryos, a pregnancy rate at 35 d (53.8%, 39.1%) and 60 d (26.9%, 21.7%), and an offspring birth rate (1.9%, 1.4%) with 5 and 7 newborn cloned goats, respectively. Transgene was confirmed by PCR and southern-blot in all cloned offspring. There were no significant differences at the reconstructed embryo fusion rates, pregnancy rates and the birth rate (P > 0.05) between single and double markers groups. The Neo(r)/GFP double markers could improve the reliability for accurately and efficiently selecting the genetically modified donor cells. No adverse effect was observed on the efficiency of transgenic goat production by SCNT using somatic cells transfected with double (Neo(r)/GFP) markers vector.

  15. Bioactive Ti metal analogous to human cancellous bone: Fabrication by selective laser melting and chemical treatments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pattanayak, Deepak K; Fukuda, A; Matsushita, T; Takemoto, M; Fujibayashi, S; Sasaki, K; Nishida, N; Nakamura, T; Kokubo, T

    2011-03-01

    Selective laser melting (SLM) is a useful technique for preparing three-dimensional porous bodies with complicated internal structures directly from titanium (Ti) powders without any intermediate processing steps, with the products being expected to be useful as a bone substitute. In this study the necessary SLM processing conditions to obtain a dense product, such as the laser power, scanning speed, and hatching pattern, were investigated using a Ti powder of less than 45 μm particle size. The results show that a fully dense plate thinner than 1.8 mm was obtained when the laser power to scanning speed ratio was greater than 0.5 and the hatch spacing was less than the laser diameter, with a 30 μm thick powder layer. Porous Ti metals with structures analogous to human cancellous bone were fabricated and the compressive strength measured. The compressive strength was in the range 35-120 MPa when the porosity was in the range 75-55%. Porous Ti metals fabricated by SLM were heat-treated at 1300 °C for 1h in an argon gas atmosphere to smooth the surface. Such prepared specimens were subjected to NaOH, HCl, and heat treatment to provide bioactivity. Field emission scanning electron micrographs showed that fine networks of titanium oxide were formed over the whole surface of the porous body. These treated porous bodies formed bone-like apatite on their surfaces in a simulated body fluid within 3 days. In vivo studies showed that new bone penetrated into the pores and directly bonded to the walls within 12 weeks after implantation into the femur of Japanese white rabbits. The percentage bone affinity indices of the chemical- and heat-treated porous bodies were significantly higher than that of untreated implants. Copyright © 2010 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. A randomized trial on mineralocorticoid receptor blockade in men: effects on stress responses, selective attention, and memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cornelisse, Sandra; Joëls, Marian; Smeets, Tom

    2011-12-01

    Corticosteroids, released in high amounts after stress, exert their effects via two different receptors in the brain: glucocorticoid receptors (GRs) and mineralocorticoid receptors (MRs). GRs have a role in normalizing stress-induced effects and promoting consolidation, while MRs are thought to be important in determining the threshold for activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. We investigated the effects of MR blockade on HPA axis responses to stress and stress-induced changes in cognitive function. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 64 healthy young men received 400 mg of the MR antagonist spironolactone or placebo. After 1.5 h, they were exposed to either a Trier Social Stress Test or a non-stressful control task. Responses to stress were evaluated by hormonal, subjective, and physiological measurements. Afterwards, selective attention, working memory, and long-term memory performance were assessed. Spironolactone increased basal salivary cortisol levels as well as cortisol levels in response to stress. Furthermore, spironolactone significantly impaired selective attention, but only in the control group. The stress group receiving spironolactone showed impaired working memory performance. By contrast, long-term memory was enhanced in this group. These data support a role of MRs in the regulation of the HPA axis under basal conditions as well as in response to stress. The increased availability of cortisol after spironolactone treatment implies enhanced GR activation, which, in combination with MR blockade, presumably resulted in a decreased MR/GR activation ratio. This condition influences both selective attention and performance in various memory tasks.

  17. Pharmacodynamics and safety of the novel selective progesterone receptor modulator vilaprisan: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled phase 1 trial in healthy women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schütt, Barbara; Kaiser, Andreas; Schultze-Mosgau, Marcus-Hillert; Seitz, Christian; Bell, David; Koch, Manuela; Rohde, Beate

    2016-08-01

    Does administration of vilaprisan (VPR) to healthy women for 12 weeks reduce menstrual bleeding? In this 12-week proof-of-concept phase 1 trial, most women (30/33, 90%) who received VPR at daily doses of 1-5 mg reported the absence of menstrual bleeding. Vilaprisan (BAY 1002670) is a novel, highly potent selective progesterone receptor modulator that markedly reduces the growth of human leiomyoma tissue in a preclinical model of uterine fibroids (UFs). In this double-blind, parallel-group study, of the 163 healthy women enrolled 73 were randomized to daily VPR 0.1 mg (n = 12), 0.5 mg (n = 12), 1 mg (n = 13), 2 mg (n = 12), 5 mg (n = 12) or placebo tablets (n = 12) for 12 weeks. Participants were followed up until the start of the second menstrual bleeding after the end of treatment. Trial simulations were used to determine the minimum sample size required to estimate the non-bleeding rate (i.e. self-assessed bleeding intensity of 'none' or 'spotting') using Bayesian dose-response estimation with incorporated prior information. It was estimated that 48 participants in the per-protocol analysis population would be sufficient. Women aged 18-45 years who had been sterilized by tubal ligation were enrolled between November 2011 and May 2012. Participants kept a daily diary of bleeding intensity. Blood and urine samples were taken, and transvaginal ultrasound was performed before treatment, during treatment and follow-up. Endometrial biopsies were obtained during the pretreatment cycle, at the end of the treatment period and during the follow-up phase. The primary outcome was the estimated dose-response curve of the observed non-bleeding rate during Days 10-84 of treatment, excluding the endometrial biopsy day and 2 days after biopsy. Secondary outcomes included return of bleeding during follow-up, size of follicle-like structures and serum hormone levels. Safety assessments included adverse events (AEs), endometrial thickness and histology, laboratory parameters, vital

  18. An Analysis of Audio Features to Develop a Human Activity Recognition Model Using Genetic Algorithms, Random Forests, and Neural Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos E. Galván-Tejada

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available This work presents a human activity recognition (HAR model based on audio features. The use of sound as an information source for HAR models represents a challenge because sound wave analyses generate very large amounts of data. However, feature selection techniques may reduce the amount of data required to represent an audio signal sample. Some of the audio features that were analyzed include Mel-frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCC. Although MFCC are commonly used in voice and instrument recognition, their utility within HAR models is yet to be confirmed, and this work validates their usefulness. Additionally, statistical features were extracted from the audio samples to generate the proposed HAR model. The size of the information is necessary to conform a HAR model impact directly on the accuracy of the model. This problem also was tackled in the present work; our results indicate that we are capable of recognizing a human activity with an accuracy of 85% using the HAR model proposed. This means that minimum computational costs are needed, thus allowing portable devices to identify human activities using audio as an information source.

  19. Overtone-based pitch selection in hermit thrush song: unexpected convergence with scale construction in human music.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doolittle, Emily L; Gingras, Bruno; Endres, Dominik M; Fitch, W Tecumseh

    2014-11-18

    Many human musical scales, including the diatonic major scale prevalent in Western music, are built partially or entirely from intervals (ratios between adjacent frequencies) corresponding to small-integer proportions drawn from the harmonic series. Scientists have long debated the extent to which principles of scale generation in human music are biologically or culturally determined. Data from animal "song" may provide new insights into this discussion. Here, by examining pitch relationships using both a simple linear regression model and a Bayesian generative model, we show that most songs of the hermit thrush (Catharus guttatus) favor simple frequency ratios derived from the harmonic (or overtone) series. Furthermore, we show that this frequency selection results not from physical constraints governing peripheral production mechanisms but from active selection at a central level. These data provide the most rigorous empirical evidence to date of a bird song that makes use of the same mathematical principles that underlie Western and many non-Western musical scales, demonstrating surprising convergence between human and animal "song cultures." Although there is no evidence that the songs of most bird species follow the overtone series, our findings add to a small but growing body of research showing that a preference for small-integer frequency ratios is not unique to humans. These findings thus have important implications for current debates about the origins of human musical systems and may call for a reevaluation of existing theories of musical consonance based on specific human vocal characteristics.

  20. Selective destruction of mouse islet beta cells by human T lymphocytes in a newly-established humanized type 1 diabetic model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhao, Yong, E-mail: yongzhao@uic.edu [Department of Medicine, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612 (United States); Guo, Chengshan; Hwang, David; Lin, Brian; Dingeldein, Michael; Mihailescu, Dan; Sam, Susan; Sidhwani, Seema [Department of Medicine, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612 (United States); Zhang, Yongkang [Department of Pharmacology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612 (United States); Jain, Sumit [Department of Medicine, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612 (United States); Skidgel, Randal A. [Department of Pharmacology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612 (United States); Prabhakar, Bellur S. [Department of Immunology and Microbiology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612 (United States); Mazzone, Theodore [Department of Medicine, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612 (United States); Holterman, Mark J. [Department of Surgery, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612 (United States)

    2010-09-03

    Research highlights: {yields} Establish a human immune-mediated type 1 diabetic model in NOD-scid IL2r{gamma}{sup null} mice. {yields} Using the irradiated diabetic NOD mouse spleen mononuclear cells as trigger. {yields} The islet {beta} cells were selectively destroyed by infiltrated human T cells. {yields} The model can facilitate translational research to find a cure for type 1 diabetes. -- Abstract: Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is caused by a T cell-mediated autoimmune response that leads to the loss of insulin-producing {beta} cells. The optimal preclinical testing of promising therapies would be aided by a humanized immune-mediated T1D model. We develop this model in NOD-scid IL2r{gamma}{sup null} mice. The selective destruction of pancreatic islet {beta} cells was mediated by human T lymphocytes after an initial trigger was supplied by the injection of irradiated spleen mononuclear cells (SMC) from diabetic nonobese diabetic (NOD) mice. This resulted in severe insulitis, a marked loss of total {beta}-cell mass, and other related phenotypes of T1D. The migration of human T cells to pancreatic islets was controlled by the {beta} cell-produced highly conserved chemokine stromal cell-derived factor 1 (SDF-1) and its receptor C-X-C chemokine receptor (CXCR) 4, as demonstrated by in vivo blocking experiments using antibody to CXCR4. The specificity of humanized T cell-mediated immune responses against islet {beta} cells was generated by the local inflammatory microenvironment in pancreatic islets including human CD4{sup +} T cell infiltration and clonal expansion, and the mouse islet {beta}-cell-derived CD1d-mediated human iNKT activation. The selective destruction of mouse islet {beta} cells by a human T cell-mediated immune response in this humanized T1D model can mimic those observed in T1D patients. This model can provide a valuable tool for translational research into T1D.

  1. Depth perception not found in human observers for static or dynamic anti-correlated random dot stereograms.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul B Hibbard

    Full Text Available One of the greatest challenges in visual neuroscience is that of linking neural activity with perceptual experience. In the case of binocular depth perception, important insights have been achieved through comparing neural responses and the perception of depth, for carefully selected stimuli. One of the most important types of stimulus that has been used here is the anti-correlated random dot stereogram (ACRDS. In these stimuli, the contrast polarity of one half of a stereoscopic image is reversed. While neurons in cortical area V1 respond reliably to the binocular disparities in ACRDS, they do not create a sensation of depth. This discrepancy has been used to argue that depth perception must rely on neural activity elsewhere in the brain. Currently, the psychophysical results on which this argument rests are not clear-cut. While it is generally assumed that ACRDS do not support the perception of depth, some studies have reported that some people, some of the time, perceive depth in some types of these stimuli. Given the importance of these results for understanding the neural correlates of stereopsis, we studied depth perception in ACRDS using a large number of observers, in order to provide an unambiguous conclusion about the extent to which these stimuli support the perception of depth. We presented observers with random dot stereograms in which correlated dots were presented in a surrounding annulus and correlated or anti-correlated dots were presented in a central circular region. While observers could reliably report the depth of the central region for correlated stimuli, we found no evidence for depth perception in static or dynamic anti-correlated stimuli. Confidence ratings for stereoscopic perception were uniformly low for anti-correlated stimuli, but showed normal variation with disparity for correlated stimuli. These results establish that the inability of observers to perceive depth in ACRDS is a robust phenomenon.

  2. Depth perception not found in human observers for static or dynamic anti-correlated random dot stereograms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hibbard, Paul B; Scott-Brown, Kenneth C; Haigh, Emma C; Adrain, Melanie

    2014-01-01

    One of the greatest challenges in visual neuroscience is that of linking neural activity with perceptual experience. In the case of binocular depth perception, important insights have been achieved through comparing neural responses and the perception of depth, for carefully selected stimuli. One of the most important types of stimulus that has been used here is the anti-correlated random dot stereogram (ACRDS). In these stimuli, the contrast polarity of one half of a stereoscopic image is reversed. While neurons in cortical area V1 respond reliably to the binocular disparities in ACRDS, they do not create a sensation of depth. This discrepancy has been used to argue that depth perception must rely on neural activity elsewhere in the brain. Currently, the psychophysical results on which this argument rests are not clear-cut. While it is generally assumed that ACRDS do not support the perception of depth, some studies have reported that some people, some of the time, perceive depth in some types of these stimuli. Given the importance of these results for understanding the neural correlates of stereopsis, we studied depth perception in ACRDS using a large number of observers, in order to provide an unambiguous conclusion about the extent to which these stimuli support the perception of depth. We presented observers with random dot stereograms in which correlated dots were presented in a surrounding annulus and correlated or anti-correlated dots were presented in a central circular region. While observers could reliably report the depth of the central region for correlated stimuli, we found no evidence for depth perception in static or dynamic anti-correlated stimuli. Confidence ratings for stereoscopic perception were uniformly low for anti-correlated stimuli, but showed normal variation with disparity for correlated stimuli. These results establish that the inability of observers to perceive depth in ACRDS is a robust phenomenon.

  3. Food pantry selection solutions: a randomized controlled trial in client-choice food pantries to nudge clients to targeted foods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Norbert L W; Just, David R; Swigert, Jeffery; Wansink, Brian

    2017-06-01

    Food pantries and food banks are interested in cost-effective methods to encourage the selection of targeted foods without restricting choices. Thus, this study evaluates the effectiveness of nudges toward targeted foods. In October/November 2014, we manipulated the display of a targeted product in a New York State food pantry. We evaluated the binary choice of the targeted good when we placed it in the front or the back of the category line (placement order) and when we presented the product in its original box or unboxed (packaging). The average uptake proportion for the back treatment was 0.231, 95% CI = 0.179, 0.29, n = 205, and for the front treatment, the proportion was 0.337, 95% CI = 0.272, 0.406, n = 238 with an odds ratio of 1.688, 95% CI = 1.088, 2.523. The average uptake for the unboxed treatment was 0.224, 95% CI = 0.174, 0.280, n = 255, and for the boxed intervention, the proportion was 0.356, 95% CI = 0.288, 0.429, n = 188 with an odds ratio of 1.923, 95% CI = 1.237, 2.991. Nudges increased uptake of the targeted food. The findings also hold when we control for a potential confounder. Low cost and unobtrusive nudges can be effective tools for food pantry organizers to encourage the selection of targeted foods. NCT02403882. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Faculty of Public Health. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  4. Recruitment strategies should not be randomly selected: empirically improving recruitment success and diversity in developmental psychology research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugden, Nicole A.; Moulson, Margaret C.

    2015-01-01

    Psychological and developmental research have been critiqued for the lack of diversity of research samples. Because differences in culture, race, and ethnicity can influence participant behavior, limited diversity limits the generalizability of the findings. These differences may also impact how participants behave in response to recruitment attempts, which suggests that recruitment itself may be leveraged to increase sample diversity. The goal of the current study was to determine what factors, within a recruitment interaction, could be leveraged to increase success and diversity when recruiting families with children for developmental research. Study 1 found three factors influenced success: (1) recruitment was more successful when other potential participants were also interested (i.e., recruiters were busy), (2) recruiters of particular races were more successful than recruiters of other races, and (3) differences in success were related to what the recruiter said to engage the potential participant (i.e., the script). The latter two factors interacted, suggesting some recruiters were using less optimal scripts. To improve success rates, study 2 randomly assigned scripts to recruiters and encouraged them to recruit more vigorously during busy periods. Study 2 found that two factors influenced success: (1) some scripts were more successful than others and (2) we were more successful at recruiting non-White potential participants than White participants. These two interacted, with some scripts being more successful with White and other scripts being more successful with non-White families. This intervention significantly increased recruitment success rate by 8.1% and the overall number of families recruited by 15.3%. These findings reveal that empirically evaluating and tailoring recruitment efforts based on the most successful strategies is effective in boosting diversity through increased participation of children from non-White families. PMID:25972829

  5. Suicide in Nepal: a modified psychological autopsy investigation from randomly selected police cases between 2013 and 2015.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagaman, Ashley K; Khadka, S; Lohani, S; Kohrt, B

    2017-12-01

    Yearly, 600,000 people complete suicide in low- and middle-income countries, accounting for 75% of the world's burden of suicide mortality. The highest regional rates are in South and East Asia. Nepal has one of the highest suicide rates in the world; however, few investigations exploring patterns surrounding both male and female suicides exist. This study used psychological autopsies to identify common factors, precipitating events, and warning signs in a diverse sample. Randomly sampled from 302 police case reports over 24 months, psychological autopsies were conducted for 39 completed suicide cases in one urban and one rural region of Nepal. In the total police sample (n = 302), 57.0% of deaths were male. Over 40% of deaths were 25 years or younger, including 65% of rural and 50.8% of female suicide deaths. We estimate the crude urban and rural suicide rates to be 16.1 and 22.8 per 100,000, respectively. Within our psychological autopsy sample, 38.5% met criteria for depression and only 23.1% informants believed that the deceased had thoughts of self-harm or suicide before death. Important warning signs include recent geographic migration, alcohol abuse, and family history of suicide. Suicide prevention strategies in Nepal should account for the lack of awareness about suicide risk among family members and early age of suicide completion, especially in rural and female populations. Given the low rates of ideation disclosure to friends and family, educating the general public about other signs of suicide may help prevention efforts in Nepal.

  6. The influence of ginger (Zingiber officinale on human sperm quality and DNA fragmentation: A double-blind randomized clinical trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jalil Hosseini

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: Although the effectiveness of ginger as an antioxidant agent has been exploited, little human research has been conducted on its activity on male reproductive functions. Objective: This study was designed to investigate the effects of ginger (Zingiber officinale on sperm DNA fragmentation (SDF in infertile men. Materials and Methods: This randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled trial with a 1:1 allocation was performed on 100 infertility treatment candidates who were admitted to Royan Institute for Reproductive Biomedicine, Tehran, Iran. Patients were randomly assigned to receive one of two treatments: ginger and placebo. Patients were given a 3-month oral treatment (members received capsules containing 250 mg of ginger powder twice a day in ginger and a placebo in other group. Before and after treatment, standardized semen samples were obtained to determine sperm concentration, motility, and SDF according to World Health Organization. Results: There was no significant difference between two groups regarding SDF at baseline (53.48. 95%CI: 37.95-69.02 in cases and (56.75, 95%CI: 40.01-73.5 in controls. The average positive percentage of SDF in patients receiving ginger (17.77, 95%CI: 6.16-29.39 was lower compared with placebo (40.54, 95%CI: 23.94-57.13 after three month of treatment (p=0.02. In multivariate analysis, SDF was significantly lower in patients receiving ginger compared with placebo (mean difference: 3.21, 95%CI: 0.78-5.63, p=0.009. There were no significant differences between two groups regarding to semen parameters. Conclusion: The present study has demonstrated that ginger in a controlled study of efficacy was effective in decreasing SDF in infertile men.

  7. Patterns of MHC-dependent mate selection in humans and non-human primates: a meta-analysis

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Winternitz, Jamie Caroline; Abbate, J. L.; Huchard, E.; Havlíček, J.; Garamszegi, L. Z.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 26, č. 2 (2017), s. 668-688 ISSN 0962-1083 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : major histocompatibility complex * sexual selection * inbreeding avoidance * mating preference * good genes * HLA Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Biology (theoretical, mathematical, thermal, cryobiology, biological rhythm), Evolutionary biology Impact factor: 6.086, year: 2016

  8. CARbodies: Human Antibodies Against Cell Surface Tumor Antigens Selected From Repertoires Displayed on T Cell Chimeric Antigen Receptors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanesa Alonso-Camino

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available A human single-chain variable fragment (scFv antibody library was expressed on the surface of human T cells after transduction with lentiviral vectors (LVs. The repertoire was fused to a first-generation T cell receptor ζ (TCRζ-based chimeric antigen receptor (CAR. We used this library to isolate antibodies termed CARbodies that recognize antigens expressed on the tumor cell surface in a proof-of-principle system. After three rounds of activation-selection there was a clear repertoire restriction, with the emergence dominant clones. The CARbodies were purified from bacterial cultures as soluble and active proteins. Furthermore, to validate its potential application for adoptive cell therapy, human T cells were transduced with a LV encoding a second-generation costimulatory CAR (CARv2 bearing the selected CARbodies. Transduced human primary T cells expressed significant levels of the CARbodies-based CARv2 fusion protein on the cell surface, and importantly could be specifically activated, after stimulation with tumor cells. This approach is a promising tool for the generation of antibodies fully adapted to the display format (CAR and the selection context (cell synapse, which could extend the scope of current adoptive cell therapy strategies with CAR-redirected T cells.

  9. RECOMBINANT HUMAN INTERLEUKIN-1 RECEPTOR ANTAGONIST IN THE TREATMENT OF PATIENTS WITH SEPSIS SYNDROME - RESULTS FROM A RANDOMIZED, DOUBLE-BLIND, PLACEBO-CONTROLLED TRIAL

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    FISHER, C. J.; DHAINAUT, J. F. A.; Opal, S. M.; Pribble, J. P.; BALK, R. A.; SLOTMAN, G. J.; IBERTI, T. J.; RACKOW, E. C.; SHAPIRO, M. J.; GREENMAN, R. L.; REINES, H. D.; SHELLY, M. P.; THOMPSON, B. W.; LABRECQUE, J. F.; Catalano, M. A.; KNAUS, W. A.; Sadoff, J. C.; ASTIZ, M.; CARPATI, C.; BONE, R. C.; FREIDMAN, B.; MURE, A. J.; BRATHWAITE, C.; SHAPIRO, E.; MELHORN, L.; TAYLOR, R.; KEEGAN, M.; OBRIEN, J.; SCHEIN, R.; PENA, M.; WASSERLOUF, M.; OROPELLO, J.; BENJAMIN, E.; DELGUIDICE, R.; EMMANUEL, G.; LIE, T.; Anderson, L.; Marshall, J.; DEMAJO, W.; ROTSTEIN, O.; FOSTER, D.; Abraham, E.; MIDDLETON, H.; Perry, C.; LEVY, H.; FRY, D. E.; SIMPSON, S. Q.; CROWELL, R. E.; Neidhart, M.; Stevens, D.; COFFMAN, T.; NARASIMHAM, N.; MERRICK, D. K.; BERGQUIST, W.; MATZEL, K. E.; HUEBLER, M.; Foulke, G. E.; ALBERTSON, T. E.; WALBY, W. F.; ALLEN, R. P.; Baughman, R.; HASSELGREN, P. O.; Fink, M. P.; FAVORITO, F.; THOMPSON, B. T.; CORBIN, R.; SHELLHORSE, G. Y.; FRAZIER, A.; White, S.; GARRARD, C.; ACOURT, C.; STORER, S.; GERVICH, D. H.; FOSHE, D.; BRASE, R.; BAGDAHN, A.; COONEY, R.; Smith, J. S.; MARTIN, L. F.; Vincent, J. L.; Friedman, G.; Berlot, G.; FLETCHER, J. R.; WILLIAMS, M. D.; WRIGHT, T. F.; Johnson, S.; FEILD, C.; WOLF, K.; MACINTYRE, N.; DUBIN, H. G.; DURKIN, M. R.; DUBIN, P. K.; STAUBACH, K. H.; FEIN, A. M.; SCHULMAN, D. B.; NIEDERMAN, M. S.; CHALFIN, D. B.; van Leeuwen, P. A. M.; Boermeester, M. A.; Schneider, A. J.; BANDER, J.; IMM, A.; BERNARD, G.; Nelson, L.; Stroud, M.; SAFCSAK, K.; CERRA, F.; RINDAL, J.; Mann, H.; HALPERN, N.; SILVERSTEIN, J.; ALICEA, M.; Sibbald, W. J.; MARTIN, C. M.; RUTLEDGE, F. S.; PETTI, K.; RUSSELL, J. A.; KRUGER, R.; DRUMMOND, A.; LANGE, P.; SEIFERT, T.; DUROCHER, A.; TENAILLON, A.; BOITEAU, R.; LHERM, T.; Lowry, S. F.; Coyle, S. M.; Barie, P. S.; DEMARIA, E.; SNYDMAN, D. R.; SCHWAITZBERG, S. D.; NASRAWAY, S. A.; GRINDLINGER, J.; SUMMER, W.; DEBOISBLANC, B.; WAHL, M.; ALESTIG, K.; GROSSMAN, J.; MAKI, D.; PAZ, H. L.; Weiner, M.; BIHARI, D.; Campbell, D.; BLEICHNER, G.; DAHN, M. S.; LANGE, M. P. A.; Hall, J.; POHLMAN, A.; WENZEL, R. P.; GROSSERODE, M.; COSTIGAN, M.; MILESKI, W.; WEIGELT, J.; YESTON, N.; IRIZARRY, C.; Ross, J.; ROBBINS, J.; NIGHTINGALE, P.; OWEN, K.; SANDSTEDT, S.; Berg, S.; SIMON, G. L.; SENEFF, M. G.; CONRY, K. M.; ZIMMERMAN, J. L.; Dellinger, R. P.; Johnston, R.; ALLEE, P.; GRANDE, P. O.; MYHRE, E.; DHAINAUT, J. F.; HAMY, I.; Mira, J. P.; HARMON, J.; White, J.; MCKIE, L.; SILVERMAN, H.; TUMA, P.; Bennett, D.; PORTER, J. C.; LAURELL, M. H.; Jacobs, S.; ASH, S.; Stiles, D. M.; PRIOR, M. J.; KNATTERUD, G.; TERRIN, M.; KUFERA, J.; WILKENS, P.; RA, K.; MONROE, L.; SPRUNG, C.; HAMILTON, C. M.; MATTHAY, R.; MCCABE, W.; TONASCIA, J.; WIEDEMAN, H.; Wittes, J.; CAMPION, G. V.; CROFT, C. R.; LUSTICK, R.; LOOKABAUGH, J.; GORDON, G. S.; NOE, L.; BLOEDOW, D.; SMITH, C. G.; BRANNON, D.; KUSH, R.; NG, D.; MOORE, E.; BAZEMORE, K.; GALVAN, M.; Wagner, D.; HARRELL, F.; STABLEIN, D.

    1994-01-01

    Objective.-To further define the safety and efficacy of recombinant human interleukin 1 receptor antagonist (rhlL-1ra) in the treatment of sepsis syndrome. Study Design.-Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter, multinational clinical trial. Population.-A total of 893 patients with

  10. Why Creativity is Sexy: A Review of the Evidence of Sexual Selection for Creative Abilities in Humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stoyo Karamihalev

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Creativity is an essential human trait, yet there is no consensus among scholars as to why our species have developed creative abilities. Most evolutionary explanations rely on the survival value of such abilities, but generally fail to explain why other species have not evolved similar capacities or why so many human products of creativity have little to no practical value. Sexual selection is an evolutionary force which has the potential to shed new light on this investigation by regarding creativity as a fitness indicator that has evolved for the purposes of courtship and mating. The paper at hand reviews the empirical evidence in support of this hypothesis.

  11. Managing salinity in Upper Colorado River Basin streams: Selecting catchments for sediment control efforts using watershed characteristics and random forests models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tillman, Fred; Anning, David W.; Heilman, Julian A.; Buto, Susan G.; Miller, Matthew P.

    2018-01-01

    Elevated concentrations of dissolved-solids (salinity) including calcium, sodium, sulfate, and chloride, among others, in the Colorado River cause substantial problems for its water users. Previous efforts to reduce dissolved solids in upper Colorado River basin (UCRB) streams often focused on reducing suspended-sediment transport to streams, but few studies have investigated the relationship between suspended sediment and salinity, or evaluated which watershed characteristics might be associated with this relationship. Are there catchment properties that may help in identifying areas where control of suspended sediment will also reduce salinity transport to streams? A random forests classification analysis was performed on topographic, climate, land cover, geology, rock chemistry, soil, and hydrologic information in 163 UCRB catchments. Two random forests models were developed in this study: one for exploring stream and catchment characteristics associated with stream sites where dissolved solids increase with increasing suspended-sediment concentration, and the other for predicting where these sites are located in unmonitored reaches. Results of variable importance from the exploratory random forests models indicate that no simple source, geochemical process, or transport mechanism can easily explain the relationship between dissolved solids and suspended sediment concentrations at UCRB monitoring sites. Among the most important watershed characteristics in both models were measures of soil hydraulic conductivity, soil erodibility, minimum catchment elevation, catchment area, and the silt component of soil in the catchment. Predictions at key locations in the basin were combined with observations from selected monitoring sites, and presented in map-form to give a complete understanding of where catchment sediment control practices would also benefit control of dissolved solids in streams.

  12. Effect of a Counseling Session Bolstered by Text Messaging on Self-Selected Health Behaviors in College Students: A Preliminary Randomized Controlled Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandrick, Janice; Tracy, Doreen; Eliasson, Arn; Roth, Ashley; Bartel, Jeffrey; Simko, Melanie; Bowman, Tracy; Harouse-Bell, Karen; Kashani, Mariam; Vernalis, Marina

    2017-05-17

    The college experience is often the first time when young adults live independently and make their own lifestyle choices. These choices affect dietary behaviors, exercise habits, techniques to deal with stress, and decisions on sleep time, all of which direct the trajectory of future health. There is a need for effective strategies that will encourage healthy lifestyle choices in young adults attending college. This preliminary randomized controlled trial tested the effect of coaching and text messages (short message service, SMS) on self-selected health behaviors in the domains of diet, exercise, stress, and sleep. A second analysis measured the ripple effect of the intervention on health behaviors not specifically selected as a goal by participants. Full-time students aged 18-30 years were recruited by word of mouth and campuswide advertisements (flyers, posters, mailings, university website) at a small university in western Pennsylvania from January to May 2015. Exclusions included pregnancy, eating disorders, chronic medical diagnoses, and prescription medications other than birth control. Of 60 participants, 30 were randomized to receive a single face-to-face meeting with a health coach to review results of behavioral questionnaires and to set a health behavior goal for the 8-week study period. The face-to-face meeting was followed by SMS text messages designed to encourage achievement of the behavioral goal. A total of 30 control subjects underwent the same health and behavioral assessments at intake and program end but did not receive coaching or SMS text messages. The texting app showed that 87.31% (2187/2505) of messages were viewed by intervention participants. Furthermore, 28 of the 30 intervention participants and all 30 control participants provided outcome data. Among intervention participants, 22 of 30 (73%) showed improvement in health behavior goal attainment, with the whole group (n=30) showing a mean improvement of 88% (95% CI 39-136). Mean

  13. A theory for the origin of a self-replicating chemical system. I - Natural selection of the autogen from short, random oligomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, D. H.

    1980-01-01

    A general theory is presented for the origin of a self-replicating chemical system, termed an autogen, which is capable of both crude replication and translation (protein synthesis). The theory requires the availability of free energy and monomers to the system, a significant background low-yield synthesis of kinetically stable oligopeptides and oligonucleotides, the localization of the oligomers, crude oligonucleotide selectivity of amino acids during oligopeptide synthesis, crude oligonucleotide replication, and two short peptide families which catalyze replication and translation, to produce a localized group of at least one copy each of two protogenes and two protoenzymes. The model posits a process of random oligomerization, followed by the random nucleation of functional components and the rapid autocatalytic growth of the functioning autogen to macroscopic amounts, to account for the origin of the first self-replicating system. Such a process contains steps of such high probability and short time periods that it is suggested that the emergence of an autogen in a laboratory experiment of reasonable time scale may be possible.

  14. Positive selection in the chromosome 16 VKORC1 genomic region has contributed to the variability of anticoagulant response in humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blandine Patillon

    Full Text Available VKORC1 (vitamin K epoxide reductase complex subunit 1, 16p11.2 is the main genetic determinant of human response to oral anticoagulants of antivitamin K type (AVK. This gene was recently suggested to be a putative target of positive selection in East Asian populations. In this study, we genotyped the HGDP-CEPH Panel for six VKORC1 SNPs and downloaded chromosome 16 genotypes from the HGDP-CEPH database in order to characterize the geographic distribution of footprints of positive selection within and around this locus. A unique VKORC1 haplotype carrying the promoter mutation associated with AVK sensitivity showed especially high frequencies in all the 17 HGDP-CEPH East Asian population samples. VKORC1 and 24 neighboring genes were found to lie in a 505 kb region of strong linkage disequilibrium in these populations. Patterns of allele frequency differentiation and haplotype structure suggest that this genomic region has been submitted to a near complete selective sweep in all East Asian populations and only in this geographic area. The most extreme scores of the different selection tests are found within a smaller 45 kb region that contains VKORC1 and three other genes (BCKDK, MYST1 (KAT8, and PRSS8 with different functions. Because of the strong linkage disequilibrium, it is not possible to determine if VKORC1 or one of the three other genes is the target of this strong positive selection that could explain present-day differences among human populations in AVK dose requirement. Our results show that the extended region surrounding a presumable single target of positive selection should be analyzed for genetic variation in a wide range of genetically diverse populations in order to account for other neighboring and confounding selective events and the hitchhiking effect.

  15. Effects of Video Game Training on Measures of Selective Attention and Working Memory in Older Adults: Results from a Randomized Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballesteros, Soledad; Mayas, Julia; Prieto, Antonio; Ruiz-Marquez, Eloísa; Toril, Pilar; Reales, José M.

    2017-01-01

    Video game training with older adults potentially enhances aspects of cognition that decline with aging and could therefore offer a promising training approach. Although, previous published studies suggest that training can produce transfer, many of them have certain shortcomings. This randomized controlled trial (RCT; Clinicaltrials.gov ID: NCT02796508) tried to overcome some of these limitations by incorporating an active control group and the assessment of motivation and expectations. Seventy-five older volunteers were randomly assigned to the experimental group trained for 16 sessions with non-action video games from Lumosity, a commercial platform (http://www.lumosity.com/) or to an active control group trained for the same number of sessions with simulation strategy games. The final sample included 55 older adults (30 in the experimental group and 25 in the active control group). Participants were tested individually before and after training to assess working memory (WM) and selective attention and also reported their perceived improvement, motivation and engagement. The results showed improved performance across the training sessions. The main results were: (1) the experimental group did not show greater improvements in measures of selective attention and working memory than the active control group (the opposite occurred in the oddball task); (2) a marginal training effect was observed for the N-back task, but not for the Stroop task while both groups improved in the Corsi Blocks task. Based on these results, one can conclude that training with non-action games provide modest benefits for untrained tasks. The effect is not specific for that kind of training as a similar effect was observed for strategy video games. Groups did not differ in motivation, engagement or expectations. PMID:29163136

  16. Effects of Video Game Training on Measures of Selective Attention and Working Memory in Older Adults: Results from a Randomized Controlled Trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soledad Ballesteros

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Video game training with older adults potentially enhances aspects of cognition that decline with aging and could therefore offer a promising training approach. Although, previous published studies suggest that training can produce transfer, many of them have certain shortcomings. This randomized controlled trial (RCT; Clinicaltrials.gov ID: NCT02796508 tried to overcome some of these limitations by incorporating an active control group and the assessment of motivation and expectations. Seventy-five older volunteers were randomly assigned to the experimental group trained for 16 sessions with non-action video games from Lumosity, a commercial platform (http://www.lumosity.com/ or to an active control group trained for the same number of sessions with simulation strategy games. The final sample included 55 older adults (30 in the experimental group and 25 in the active control group. Participants were tested individually before and after training to assess working memory (WM and selective attention and also reported their perceived improvement, motivation and engagement. The results showed improved performance across the training sessions. The main results were: (1 the experimental group did not show greater improvements in measures of selective attention and working memory than the active control group (the opposite occurred in the oddball task; (2 a marginal training effect was observed for the N-back task, but not for the Stroop task while both groups improved in the Corsi Blocks task. Based on these results, one can conclude that training with non-action games provide modest benefits for untrained tasks. The effect is not specific for that kind of training as a similar effect was observed for strategy video games. Groups did not differ in motivation, engagement or expectations.

  17. Effects of Video Game Training on Measures of Selective Attention and Working Memory in Older Adults: Results from a Randomized Controlled Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballesteros, Soledad; Mayas, Julia; Prieto, Antonio; Ruiz-Marquez, Eloísa; Toril, Pilar; Reales, José M

    2017-01-01

    Video game training with older adults potentially enhances aspects of cognition that decline with aging and could therefore offer a promising training approach. Although, previous published studies suggest that training can produce transfer, many of them have certain shortcomings. This randomized controlled trial (RCT; Clinicaltrials.gov ID: NCT02796508) tried to overcome some of these limitations by incorporating an active control group and the assessment of motivation and expectations. Seventy-five older volunteers were randomly assigned to the experimental group trained for 16 sessions with non-action video games from Lumosity , a commercial platform (http://www.lumosity.com/) or to an active control group trained for the same number of sessions with simulation strategy games. The final sample included 55 older adults (30 in the experimental group and 25 in the active control group). Participants were tested individually before and after training to assess working memory (WM) and selective attention and also reported their perceived improvement, motivation and engagement. The results showed improved performance across the training sessions. The main results were: (1) the experimental group did not show greater improvements in measures of selective attention and working memory than the active control group (the opposite occurred in the oddball task); (2) a marginal training effect was observed for the N -back task, but not for the Stroop task while both groups improved in the Corsi Blocks task. Based on these results, one can conclude that training with non-action games provide modest benefits for untrained tasks. The effect is not specific for that kind of training as a similar effect was observed for strategy video games. Groups did not differ in motivation, engagement or expectations.

  18. Incomplete lineage sorting patterns among human, chimpanzee and orangutan suggest recent orangutan speciation and widespread selection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hobolth, Asger; Dutheil, Julien; Hawks, John

    2011-01-01

    We search the complete orangutan genome for regions where humans are more closely related to orangutans than to chimpanzees due to incomplete lineage sorting (ILS) in the ancestor of human and chimpanzees. The search uses our recently developed coalescent HMM framework. We find ILS present in ~1%...

  19. Evo-Devo of the Human Vertebral Column: On Homeotic Transformations, Pathologies and Prenatal Selection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ten Broek, C.M.A.; Bakker, A.J.; Varela-Lasheras, I.; Bugiani, M.; Van Dongen, S.; Galis, F.

    2012-01-01

    Homeotic transformations of vertebrae are particularly common in humans and tend to come associated with malformations in a wide variety of organ systems. In a dataset of 1,389 deceased human foetuses and infants a majority had cervical ribs and approximately half of these individuals also had

  20. A Physical Activity Intervention for Brazilian Students From Low Human Development Index Areas: A Cluster-Randomized Controlled Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filho, Valter C Barbosa; da Silva, Kelly Samara; Mota, Jorge; Beck, Carmem; da Silva Lopes, Adair

    2016-11-01

    Promoting physical activity (PA) in low- and middle-income countries is an important public health topic as well as a challenge for practice. This study aimed to assess the effect of a school-based intervention on different PA-related variables among students. This cluster-randomized-controlled trial included 548 students in the intervention group and 537 in the control group (11-18 years-old) from 6 schools in neighborhoods with low Human Development Index (0.170-0.491) in Fortaleza, Brazil. The intervention included strategies focused on training teachers, opportunities for PA in the school environment and health education. Variables measured at baseline and again at the 4-months follow-up included the weekly time in different types of moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPA), preference for PA during leisure-time, PA behavioral change stage and active commuting to school. Generalized linear models and binary logistic regressions were used. An intervention effect was found by increasing the weekly time in MVPA (effect size = 0.17), popular games (effect size = 0.35), and the amount of PA per week (effect size = 0.27) among students (all P effective in promoting improvements in some PA outcomes, but the changes were not sufficient to increase the proportion of those meeting PA recommendations.

  1. Impact of homogenization of pasteurized human milk on gastric digestion in the preterm infant: A randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Oliveira, Samira C; Bellanger, Amandine; Ménard, Olivia; Pladys, Patrick; Le Gouar, Yann; Henry, Gwénaële; Dirson, Emelyne; Rousseau, Florence; Carrière, Frédéric; Dupont, Didier; Bourlieu, Claire; Deglaire, Amélie

    2017-08-01

    It has been suggested that homogenization of Holder-pasteurized human milk (PHM) could improve fat absorption and weight gain in preterm infants, but the impact on the PHM digestive kinetics has never been studied. Our objective was to determine the impact of PHM homogenization on gastric digestion in preterm infants. In a randomized controlled trial, eight hospitalized tube-fed preterm infants were their own control to compare the gastric digestion of PHM and of homogenized PHM (PHHM). PHM was obtained from donors and, for half of it, was homogenized by ultrasonication. Over a six-day sequence, gastric aspirates were collected twice a day, before and 35, 60 or 90 min after the start of PHM or PHHM ingestion. The impact of homogenization on PHM digestive kinetics and disintegration was tested using a general linear mixed model. Results were expressed as means ± SD. Homogenization leaded to a six-fold increase in the specific surface (P Homogenization increased the gastric lipolysis level (P Homogenization enhanced the proteolysis of serum albumin (P Homogenization of PHM increased the gastric lipolysis level. This could be a potential strategy to improve fat absorption, and thus growth and development in infants fed with PHM; however, its gastrointestinal tolerance needs to be investigated further. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT02112331. Copyright © 2017 European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. A random phased-array for MR-guided transcranial ultrasound neuromodulation in non-human primates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaplin, Vandiver; Phipps, Marshal A; Caskey, Charles F

    2018-04-18

    Transcranial focused ultrasound (FUS) is a non-invasive technique for therapy and study of brain neural activation. Here we report on the design and characterization of a new MR-guided FUS transducer for neuromodulation in non-human primates at 650 kHz. The array is randomized with 128 elements 6.6 mm in diameter, radius of curvature 7.2 cm, opening diameter 10.3 cm (focal ratio 0.7), and 46% coverage. Simulations were used to optimize transducer geometry with respect to focus size, grating lobes, and directivity. Focus size and grating lobes during electronic steering were quantified using hydrophone measurements in water and a three-axis stage. A novel combination of optical tracking and acoustic mapping enabled measurement of the 3D pressure distribution in the cortical region of an ex vivo skull to within ~3.5 mm of the surface, and allowed accurate modelling of the experiment via non-homogeneous 3D acoustic simulations. The data demonstrates acoustic focusing beyond the skull bone, with the focus slightly broadened and shifted proximal to the skull. The fabricated design is capable of targeting regions within the S1 sensorimotor cortex of macaques. © 2018 Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine.

  3. A random phased-array for MR-guided transcranial ultrasound neuromodulation in non-human primates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaplin, Vandiver; Phipps, Marshal A.; Caskey, Charles F.

    2018-05-01

    Transcranial focused ultrasound (FUS) is a non-invasive technique for therapy and study of brain neural activation. Here we report on the design and characterization of a new MR-guided FUS transducer for neuromodulation in non-human primates at 650 kHz. The array is randomized with 128 elements 6.6 mm in diameter, radius of curvature 7.2 cm, opening diameter 10.3 cm (focal ratio 0.7), and 46% coverage. Simulations were used to optimize transducer geometry with respect to focus size, grating lobes, and directivity. Focus size and grating lobes during electronic steering were quantified using hydrophone measurements in water and a three-axis stage. A novel combination of optical tracking and acoustic mapping enabled measurement of the 3D pressure distribution in the cortical region of an ex vivo skull to within ~3.5 mm of the surface, and allowed accurate modelling of the experiment via non-homogeneous 3D acoustic simulations. The data demonstrates acoustic focusing beyond the skull bone, with the focus slightly broadened and shifted proximal to the skull. The fabricated design is capable of targeting regions within the S1 sensorimotor cortex of macaques.

  4. Assessment of environmental exposure to mercury in selected human populations as studied by nuclear and other techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1995-01-01

    A Co-ordinated Research Programme (CRP) on assessment of environmental exposure to mercury in selected human populations as studied by nuclear and other techniques was initiated by the IAEA in 1990. The purpose of this CRP is to promote national and regional studies to evaluate the exposure of selected population groups to mercury and methylmercury and to estimate potential risks in these groups. The programme is focused on the analysis of human head hair for the determination of mercury and methylmercury. The CRP has two main components: (i) identifying population groups that are at risk, and (ii) studying health effects in the exposed persons, particularly pregnant women and the babies born to them. This document reports the discussions held during the third Research Co-ordination Meeting (RCM) for the CRP which took place at the IAEA, Monaco Laboratory. (author)

  5. A patient and community-centered approach selecting endpoints for a randomized trial of a novel advance care planning tool

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bridges JFP

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available John FP Bridges,1,2 Norah L Crossnohere,2 Anne L Schuster,1 Judith A Miller,3 Carolyn Pastorini,3,† Rebecca A Aslakson2,4,5 1Department of Health Policy and Management, The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, 2Department of Health, Behavior, and Society, The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, 3Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI Project, Baltimore, MD, 4Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine, The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, 5Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality, The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA †Carolyn Pastorini passed away on August 24, 2015 Background: Despite a movement toward patient-centered outcomes, best practices on how to gather and refine patients’ perspectives on research endpoints are limited. Advanced care planning (ACP is inherently patient centered and would benefit from patient prioritization of endpoints for ACP-related tools and studies.Objective: This investigation sought to prioritize patient-centered endpoints for the content and evaluation of an ACP video being developed for patients undergoing major surgery. We also sought to highlight an approach using complementary engagement and research strategies to document priorities and preferences of patients and other stakeholders.Materials and methods: Endpoints identified from a previously published environmental scan were operationalized following rating by a caregiver co-investigator, refinement by a patient co-investigator, review by a stakeholder committee, and validation by patients and family members. Finalized endpoints were taken to a state fair where members of the public who indicated that they or a loved one had undergone major surgery prioritized their most relevant endpoints and provided comments.Results: Of the initial 50 ACP endpoints identified from the review, 12 endpoints were selected for public

  6. Use of magnesium silicate as a selective absorbent in radioimmunological method of determination of insulin level in human serum

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bogoniowska, Z; Stelmasiak, T [Wojskowy Instytut Higieny i Epidemiologii, Warsaw (Poland)

    1974-01-01

    The authors present a radioimmunological method for determination of insulin (IRI) level in the human serum using magnesium silicate (talc) as adsorbent. The method is based on the phenomenon of selective adsorption of the free radioactive hormone. The optimal parameters for the method were determined. The serum level of IRI in clinically healthy subjects after oral glucose loading was established. The obtained results were compared with the results obtained by the radioimmunological method of double antibodies in stochastically grouped samples.

  7. Selective forces and mutational biases drive stop codon usage in the human genome: a comparison with sense codon usage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trotta, Edoardo

    2016-05-17

    The three stop codons UAA, UAG, and UGA signal the termination of mRNA translation. As a result of a mechanism that is not adequately understood, they are normally used with unequal frequencies. In this work, we showed that selective forces and mutational biases drive stop codon usage in the human genome. We found that, in respect to sense codons, stop codon usage was affected by stronger selective forces but was less influenced by neutral mutational biases. UGA is the most frequent termination codon in human genome. However, UAA was the preferred stop codon in genes with high breadth of expression, high level of expression, AT-rich coding sequences, housekeeping functions, and in gene ontology categories with the largest deviation from expected stop codon usage. Selective forces associated with the breadth and the level of expression favoured AT-rich sequences in the mRNA region including the stop site and its proximal 3'-UTR, but acted with scarce effects on sense codons, generating two regions, upstream and downstream of the stop codon, with strongly different base composition. By favouring low levels of GC-content, selection promoted labile local secondary structures at the stop site and its proximal 3'-UTR. The compositional and structural context favoured by selection was surprisingly emphasized in the class of ribosomal proteins and was consistent with sequence elements that increase the efficiency of translational termination. Stop codons were also heterogeneously distributed among chromosomes by a mechanism that was strongly correlated with the GC-content of coding sequences. In human genome, the nucleotide composition and the thermodynamic stability of stop codon site and its proximal 3'-UTR are correlated with the GC-content of coding sequences and with the breadth and the level of gene expression. In highly expressed genes stop codon usage is compositionally and structurally consistent with highly efficient translation termination signals.

  8. An Internet-based program for depressive symptoms using human and automated support: a randomized controlled trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mira A

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Adriana Mira,1 Juana Bretón-López,1,2 Azucena García-Palacios,1,2 Soledad Quero,1,2 Rosa María Baños,2,3 Cristina Botella1,2 1Department of Basic, Clinical Psychology and Psychobiology, Labpsitec, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón de la Plana, Spain; 2CIBER of Physiopathology of Obesity and Nutrition CIBERobn, CB06/03 Instituto de Salud Carlos III, Santiago de Compostela, Spain; 3Department of Personality, Evaluation and Psychological Treatment, Universidad de Valencia, Valencia, Spain Purpose: The purpose of this study was to analyze the efficacy of an Internet-based program for depressive symptoms using automated support by information and communication technologies (ICTs and human support. Patients and methods: An Internet-based program was used to teach adaptive ways to cope with depressive symptoms and daily problems. A total of 124 participants who were experiencing at least one stressful event that caused interference in their lives, many of whom had clinically significant depressive symptoms, were randomly assigned into either an intervention group with ICT support (automated mobile phone messages, automated emails, and continued feedback through the program; an intervention group with ICT support plus human support (brief weekly support phone call without clinical content; or a waiting-list control. At pre-, post-, and 12-month follow-up, they completed depression, anxiety, positive and negative effect, and perceived stress measures. Results were analyzed using both intention-to-treat and completers data. The majority were women (67.7%, with a mean age of 35.6 years (standard deviation =9.7. Results: The analysis showed that the two intervention groups improved significantly pre- to posttreatment, compared with the control group. Furthermore, improvements were maintained at the 12-month follow-up. Adherence and satisfaction with the program was high in both conditions. Conclusion: The Internet-based program was effective and well

  9. Examining the evidence for major histocompatibility complex-dependent mate selection in humans and nonhuman primates

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Winternitz, Jamie Caroline; Abbate, J. L.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 6, 13 May (2015), s. 73-88 ISSN 1179-7274 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : major histocompatibility complex * sexual selection * olfaction * facial attraction * parasite resistance * inbreeding avoidance Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology

  10. Selective kallikrein inhibitors alter human neutrophil elastase release during extracorporeal circulation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wachtfogel, Y.T.; Hack, C.E.; Nuijens, J.H; Kettner, C.; Reilly, T.M.; Knabb, R.M.; Bischoff, Rainer; Tschesche, H.; Wenzel, H.; Kucich, U.

    1995-01-01

    Cardiopulmonary bypass causes hemorrhagic complications and initiates a biochemical and cellular "whole body inflammatory response." This study investigates whether a variety of selective inhibitors of the contact pathway of intrinsic coagulation modulate complement and neutrophil activation during

  11. Effects of selected bioactive food compounds on human white adipocyte function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Björk, Christel; Wilhelm, Uta; Mandrup, Susanne

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Previous studies suggest that intake of specific bioactive compounds may have beneficial clinical effects on adipose tissue partly due to their anti-inflammatory and insulin-sensitizing properties. With the overall aim to contribute to better understanding of the mechanisms of selecte...... uptake albeit only with the combination of DHA and AC. Taken together, our results may link the reported health benefits of the selected bioactives on metabolic disorders such as insulin resistance, hypertension and dyslipidemia to effects on white adipocytes....

  12. Sustained selective attention to competing amplitude-modulations in human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riecke, Lars; Scharke, Wolfgang; Valente, Giancarlo; Gutschalk, Alexander

    2014-01-01

    Auditory selective attention plays an essential role for identifying sounds of interest in a scene, but the neural underpinnings are still incompletely understood. Recent findings demonstrate that neural activity that is time-locked to a particular amplitude-modulation (AM) is enhanced in the auditory cortex when the modulated stream of sounds is selectively attended to under sensory competition with other streams. However, the target sounds used in the previous studies differed not only in their AM, but also in other sound features, such as carrier frequency or location. Thus, it remains uncertain whether the observed enhancements reflect AM-selective attention. The present study aims at dissociating the effect of AM frequency on response enhancement in auditory cortex by using an ongoing auditory stimulus that contains two competing targets differing exclusively in their AM frequency. Electroencephalography results showed a sustained response enhancement for auditory attention compared to visual attention, but not for AM-selective attention (attended AM frequency vs. ignored AM frequency). In contrast, the response to the ignored AM frequency was enhanced, although a brief trend toward response enhancement occurred during the initial 15 s. Together with the previous findings, these observations indicate that selective enhancement of attended AMs in auditory cortex is adaptive under sustained AM-selective attention. This finding has implications for our understanding of cortical mechanisms for feature-based attentional gain control.

  13. Sustained Selective Attention to Competing Amplitude-Modulations in Human Auditory Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riecke, Lars; Scharke, Wolfgang; Valente, Giancarlo; Gutschalk, Alexander

    2014-01-01

    Auditory selective attention plays an essential role for identifying sounds of interest in a scene, but the neural underpinnings are still incompletely understood. Recent findings demonstrate that neural activity that is time-locked to a particular amplitude-modulation (AM) is enhanced in the auditory cortex when the modulated stream of sounds is selectively attended to under sensory competition with other streams. However, the target sounds used in the previous studies differed not only in their AM, but also in other sound features, such as carrier frequency or location. Thus, it remains uncertain whether the observed enhancements reflect AM-selective attention. The present study aims at dissociating the effect of AM frequency on response enhancement in auditory cortex by using an ongoing auditory stimulus that contains two competing targets differing exclusively in their AM frequency. Electroencephalography results showed a sustained response enhancement for auditory attention compared to visual attention, but not for AM-selective attention (attended AM frequency vs. ignored AM frequency). In contrast, the response to the ignored AM frequency was enhanced, although a brief trend toward response enhancement occurred during the initial 15 s. Together with the previous findings, these observations indicate that selective enhancement of attended AMs in auditory cortex is adaptive under sustained AM-selective attention. This finding has implications for our understanding of cortical mechanisms for feature-based attentional gain control. PMID:25259525

  14. Mucositis reduction by selective elimination of oral flora in irradiated cancers of the head and neck: a placebo-controlled double-blind randomized study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wijers, Oda B.; Levendag, Peter C.; Harms, Erik; Gan-Teng, A.M.; Schmitz, Paul I.M.; Hendriks, W.D.H.; Wilms, Erik B.; Est, Henri van der; Visch, Leo L.

    2001-01-01

    Purpose: The aim of the study was to test the hypothesis that aerobic Gram-negative bacteria (AGNB) play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of radiation-induced mucositis; consequently, selective elimination of these bacteria from the oral flora should result in a reduction of the mucositis. Methods and Materials: Head-and-neck cancer patients, when scheduled for treatment by external beam radiation therapy (EBRT), were randomized for prophylactic treatment with an oral paste containing either a placebo or a combination of the antibiotics polymyxin E, tobramycin, and amphotericin B (PTA group). Weekly, the objective and subjective mucositis scores and microbiologic counts of the oral flora were noted. The primary study endpoint was the mucositis grade after 3 weeks of EBRT. Results: Seventy-seven patients were evaluable. No statistically significant difference for the objective and subjective mucositis scores was observed between the two study arms (p=0.33). The percentage of patients with positive cultures of AGNB was significantly reduced in the PTA group (p=0.01). However, complete eradication of AGNB was not achieved. Conclusions: Selective elimination of AGNB of the oral flora did not result in a reduction of radiation-induced mucositis and therefore does not support the hypothesis that these bacteria play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of mucositis

  15. Identifying selected regions from heterozygosity and divergence using a light-coverage genomic dataset from two human populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taras K Oleksyk

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available When a selective sweep occurs in the chromosomal region around a target gene in two populations that have recently separated, it produces three dramatic genomic consequences: 1 decreased multi-locus heterozygosity in the region; 2 elevated or diminished genetic divergence (F(ST of multiple polymorphic variants adjacent to the selected locus between the divergent populations, due to the alternative fixation of alleles; and 3 a consequent regional increase in the variance of F(ST (S(2F(ST for the same clustered variants, due to the increased alternative fixation of alleles in the loci surrounding the selection target. In the first part of our study, to search for potential targets of directional selection, we developed and validated a resampling-based computational approach; we then scanned an array of 31 different-sized moving windows of SNP variants (5-65 SNPs across the human genome in a set of European and African American population samples with 183,997 SNP loci after correcting for the recombination rate variation. The analysis revealed 180 regions of recent selection with very strong evidence in either population or both. In the second part of our study, we compared the newly discovered putative regions to those sites previously postulated in the literature, using methods based on inspecting patterns of linkage disequilibrium, population divergence and other methodologies. The newly found regions were cross-validated with those found in nine other studies that have searched for selection signals. Our study was replicated especially well in those regions confirmed by three or more studies. These validated regions were independently verified, using a combination of different methods and different databases in other studies, and should include fewer false positives. The main strength of our analysis method compared to others is that it does not require dense genotyping and therefore can be used with data from population-based genome SNP scans

  16. Enhanced and Selective Antiproliferative Activity of Methotrexate-Functionalized-Nanocapsules to Human Breast Cancer Cells (MCF-7

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catiúscia P. de Oliveira

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Methotrexate is a folic acid antagonist and its incorporation into nanoformulations is a promising strategy to increase the drug antiproliferative effect on human breast cancer cells by overexpressing folate receptors. To evaluate the efficiency and selectivity of nanoformulations containing methotrexate and its diethyl ester derivative, using two mechanisms of drug incorporation (encapsulation and surface functionalization in the in vitro cellular uptake and antiproliferative activity in non-tumoral immortalized human keratinocytes (HaCaT and in human breast carcinoma cells (MCF-7. Methotrexate and its diethyl ester derivative were incorporated into multiwall lipid-core nanocapsules with hydrodynamic diameters lower than 160 nm and higher drug incorporation efficiency. The nanoformulations were applied to semiconfluent HaCaT or MCF-7 cells. After 24 h, the nanocapsules were internalized into HaCaT and MCF-7 cells; however, no significant difference was observed between the nanoformulations in HaCaT (low expression of folate receptors, while they showed significantly higher cellular uptakes than the blank-nanoformulation in MCF-7, which was the highest uptakes observed for the drug functionalized-nanocapsules. No antiproliferative activity was observed in HaCaT culture, whereas drug-containing nanoformulations showed antiproliferative activity against MCF-7 cells. The effect was higher for drug-surface functionalized nanocapsules. In conclusion, methotrexate-functionalized-nanocapsules showed enhanced and selective antiproliferative activity to human breast cancer cells (MCF-7 being promising products for further in vivo pre-clinical evaluations.

  17. Mapping the organization of axis of motion selective features in human area MT using high-field fMRI.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Zimmermann

    Full Text Available Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI at high magnetic fields has made it possible to investigate the columnar organization of the human brain in vivo with high degrees of accuracy and sensitivity. Until now, these results have been limited to the organization principles of early visual cortex (V1. While the middle temporal area (MT has been the first identified extra-striate visual area shown to exhibit a columnar organization in monkeys, evidence of MT's columnar response properties and topographic layout in humans has remained elusive. Research using various approaches suggests similar response properties as in monkeys but failed to provide direct evidence for direction or axis of motion selectivity in human area MT. By combining state of the art pulse sequence design, high spatial resolution in all three dimensions (0.8 mm isotropic, optimized coil design, ultrahigh field magnets (7 Tesla and novel high resolution cortical grid sampling analysis tools, we provide the first direct evidence for large-scale axis of motion selective feature organization in human area MT closely matching predictions from topographic columnar-level simulations.

  18. Total Quality Management: A Selective Commentary on Its Human Dimensions, with Special Reference to Its Downside.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Connor, Patrick E.

    1997-01-01

    Although total quality management has potential benefits, its human costs are often substantial, for example, diminished morale of middle management, trivial employee participation, and coercive teamwork. Productivity gains thus come at a price. (SK)

  19. FLAX OIL FROM TRANSGENIC LINUM USITATISSIMUM SELECTIVELY INHIBITS IN VITRO PROLIFERATION OF HUMAN CANCER CELL LINES.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gebarowski, Tomasz; Gebczak, Katarzyna; Wiatrak, Benita; Kulma, Anna; Pelc, Katarzyna; Czuj, Tadeusz; Szopa, Jan; Gasiorowski, Kazimierz

    2017-03-01

    Emulsions made of oils from transgenic flaxseeds significantly decreased in vitro proliferation of six tested human cancer cell lines in 48-h cultures, as assessed with the standard sulforhodamine assay. However, the emulsions also increased proliferation rate of normal human dermal fibroblasts and, to a lower extend, of keratinocytes. Both inhibition of in vitro proliferation of human cancer cell lines and stimulation of proliferation of normal dermal fibroblasts and keratinocytes were especially strong with the emulsion type B and with emulsion type M. Oils from seeds of transgenic flax type B and M should be considered as valuable adjunct to standard cytostatic therapy of human cancers and also could be applied to improve the treatment of skin lesions in wound healing.

  20. Randomized Comparison of Two Vaginal Self-Sampling Methods for Human Papillomavirus Detection: Dry Swab versus FTA Cartridge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catarino, Rosa; Vassilakos, Pierre; Bilancioni, Aline; Vanden Eynde, Mathieu; Meyer-Hamme, Ulrike; Menoud, Pierre-Alain; Guerry, Frédéric; Petignat, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    Human papillomavirus (HPV) self-sampling (self-HPV) is valuable in cervical cancer screening. HPV testing is usually performed on physician-collected cervical smears stored in liquid-based medium. Dry filters and swabs are an alternative. We evaluated the adequacy of self-HPV using two dry storage and transport devices, the FTA cartridge and swab. A total of 130 women performed two consecutive self-HPV samples. Randomization determined which of the two tests was performed first: self-HPV using dry swabs (s-DRY) or vaginal specimen collection using a cytobrush applied to an FTA cartridge (s-FTA). After self-HPV, a physician collected a cervical sample using liquid-based medium (Dr-WET). HPV types were identified by real-time PCR. Agreement between collection methods was measured using the kappa statistic. HPV prevalence for high-risk types was 62.3% (95%CI: 53.7-70.2) detected by s-DRY, 56.2% (95%CI: 47.6-64.4) by Dr-WET, and 54.6% (95%CI: 46.1-62.9) by s-FTA. There was overall agreement of 70.8% between s-FTA and s-DRY samples (kappa = 0.34), and of 82.3% between self-HPV and Dr-WET samples (kappa = 0.56). Detection sensitivities for low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion or worse (LSIL+) were: 64.0% (95%CI: 44.5-79.8) for s-FTA, 84.6% (95%CI: 66.5-93.9) for s-DRY, and 76.9% (95%CI: 58.0-89.0) for Dr-WET. The preferred self-collection method among patients was s-DRY (40.8% vs. 15.4%). Regarding costs, FTA card was five times more expensive than the swab (~5 US dollars (USD)/per card vs. ~1 USD/per swab). Self-HPV using dry swabs is sensitive for detecting LSIL+ and less expensive than s-FTA. International Standard Randomized Controlled Trial Number (ISRCTN): 43310942.