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Sample records for significantly improved signal

  1. Incidentally detected enhancing lesions found in breast MRI: analysis of apparent diffusion coefficient and T2 signal intensity significantly improves specificity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arponen, Otso; Masarwah, Amro; Taina, Mikko [Kuopio University Hospital, Kuopio University Hospital, Diagnostic Imaging Centre, Department of Clinical Radiology, PO Box 1777, Kuopio (Finland); Kuopio University Hospital, University of Eastern Finland, Institute of Clinical Medicine, School of Medicine, Department of Clinical Radiology, PO Box 1777, Kuopio (Finland); Sutela, Anna; Koenoenen, Mervi; Hakumaeki, Juhana; Sudah, Mazen [Kuopio University Hospital, Kuopio University Hospital, Diagnostic Imaging Centre, Department of Clinical Radiology, PO Box 1777, Kuopio (Finland); Sironen, Reijo [Kuopio University Hospital, Kuopio University Hospital, Department of Pathology, PO Box 1777, Kuopio (Finland); Kuopio University Hospital, University of Eastern Finland, Institute of Clinical Medicine, School of Medicine, Clinical Pathology and Forensic Medicine, PO Box 1777, Kuopio (Finland); University of Eastern Finland, Cancer Center of Eastern Finland, Kuopio (Finland); Vanninen, Ritva [Kuopio University Hospital, Kuopio University Hospital, Diagnostic Imaging Centre, Department of Clinical Radiology, PO Box 1777, Kuopio (Finland); Kuopio University Hospital, University of Eastern Finland, Institute of Clinical Medicine, School of Medicine, Department of Clinical Radiology, PO Box 1777, Kuopio (Finland); University of Eastern Finland, Cancer Center of Eastern Finland, Kuopio (Finland)

    2016-12-15

    To evaluate the value of adding T2- and diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) to the BI-RADS registered classification in MRI-detected lesions. This retrospective study included 112 consecutive patients who underwent 3.0T structural breast MRI with T2- and DWI on the basis of EUSOMA recommendations. Morphological and kinetic features, T2 signal intensity (T2 SI) and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) findings were assessed. Thirty-three (29.5 %) patients (mean age 57.0 ± 12.7 years) had 36 primarily MRI-detected incidental lesions of which 16 (44.4 %) proved to be malignant. No single morphological or kinetic feature was associated with malignancy. Both low T2 SI (P = 0.009) and low ADC values (≤0.87 x 10{sup -3} mm{sup 2}s{sup -1}, P < 0.001) yielded high specificity (80.0 %/80.0 %). The BI-RADS classification supplemented with information from DWI and T2-WI improved the diagnostic performance of the BI-RADS classification as sensitivity remained 100 % and specificity improved from 30 % to 65.0 %. The numbers of false positive lesions declined from 39 % (N = 14) to 19 % (N = 7). MRI-detected incidental lesions may be challenging to characterize as they have few specific malignancy indicating features. The specificity of MRI can be improved by incorporating T2 SI and ADC values into the BI-RADS assessment. (orig.)

  2. Carotid endarterectomy significantly improves postoperative laryngeal sensitivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammer, Georg Philipp; Tomazic, Peter Valentin; Vasicek, Sarah; Graupp, Matthias; Gugatschka, Markus; Baumann, Anneliese; Konstantiniuk, Peter; Koter, Stephan Herwig

    2016-11-01

    sensory threshold on the operated-on side (6.08 ± 2.02 mm Hg) decreased significantly at the 6-week follow-up, even in relation to the preoperative measure (P = .022). With the exception of one patient with permanent unilateral vocal fold immobility, no signs of nerve injury were detected. In accordance with previous reports, injuries to the recurrent laryngeal nerve during CEA seem to be rare. In most patients, postoperative symptoms (globus, dysphagia, dysphonia) and signs fade within a few weeks without any specific therapeutic intervention. This study shows an improved long-term postoperative superior laryngeal nerve function with regard to laryngopharyngeal sensitivity. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Melatonin: a chemical photoperiodic signal with clinical significance in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pang, S F; Pang, C S; Poon, A M; Lee, P P; Liu, Z M; Shiu, S Y

    1998-03-01

    Secretion of pineal melatonin exhibits a diumal rhythm and a seasonal rhythm in humans. Night-time melatonin is high at 3-5 year-old and decreases with age. Many drugs and pathological conditions also change melatonin levels in the circulation. Melatonin has a mild sedative effect and has been used effectively in synchronizing the sleep-wake cycle of patients with sleep disorders. Immunoenhancing, anti-cancer, anti-aging and anti-oxidant effects of melatonin have been proposed. Recent studies suggest that melatonin receptors are present in central and peripheral tissues. The importance of melatonin receptors on the nervous, reproductive, immune and renal functions is implicated. Studies on the molecular biology, physiology and pathology of melatonin receptors in different tissues are progressing rapidly. The physiological and pathological changes in melatonin secretion, multifarious melatonin actions, and diverse melatonin receptors reported suggest that melatonin is a photoperiodic signal with clinical significance in humans.

  4. Erythrocyte signal transduction pathways, their oxygenation dependence and functional significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barvitenko, Nadezhda N; Adragna, Norma C; Weber, Roy E

    2005-01-01

    Erythrocytes play a key role in human and vertebrate metabolism. Tissue O2 supply is regulated by both hemoglobin (Hb)-O2 affinity and erythrocyte rheology, a key determinant of tissue perfusion. Oxygenation-deoxygenation transitions of Hb may lead to re-organization of the cytoskeleton and signalling pathways activation/deactivation in an O2-dependent manner. Deoxygenated Hb binds to the cytoplasmic domain of the anion exchanger band 3, which is anchored to the cytoskeleton, and is considered a major mechanism underlying the oxygenation-dependence of several erythrocyte functions. This work discusses the multiple modes of Hb-cytoskeleton interactions. In addition, it reviews the effects of Mg2+, 2,3-diphosphoglycerate, NO, shear stress and Ca2+, all factors accompanying the oxygenation-deoxygenation cycle in circulating red cells. Due to the extensive literature on the subject, the data discussed here, pertain mainly to human erythrocytes whose O2 affinity is modulated by 2,3-diphosphoglycerate, ectothermic vertebrate erythrocytes that use ATP, and to bird erythrocytes that use inositol pentaphosphate. Copyright 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  5. Insulin resistance and improvements in signal transduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Musi, Nicolas; Goodyear, Laurie J

    2006-02-01

    Type 2 diabetes and obesity are common metabolic disorders characterized by resistance to the actions of insulin to stimulate skeletal muscle glucose disposal. Insulin-resistant muscle has defects at several steps of the insulin-signaling pathway, including decreases in insulin-stimulated insulin receptor and insulin receptor substrate-1 tyrosine phosphorylation, and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI 3-kinase) activation. One approach to increase muscle glucose disposal is to reverse/improve these insulin-signaling defects. Weight loss and thiazolidinediones (TZDs) improve glucose disposal, in part, by increasing insulin-stimulated insulin receptor and IRS-1 tyrosine phosphorylation and PI 3-kinase activity. In contrast, physical training and metformin improve whole-body glucose disposal but have minimal effects on proximal insulin-signaling steps. A novel approach to reverse insulin resistance involves inhibition of the stress-activated protein kinase Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) and the protein tyrosine phosphatases (PTPs). A different strategy to increase muscle glucose disposal is by stimulating insulin-independent glucose transport. AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is an enzyme that works as a fuel gauge and becomes activated in situations of energy consumption, such as muscle contraction. Several studies have shown that pharmacologic activation of AMPK increases glucose transport in muscle, independent of the actions of insulin. AMPK activation is also involved in the mechanism of action of metformin and adiponectin. Moreover, in the hypothalamus, AMPK regulates appetite and body weight. The effect of AMPK to stimulate muscle glucose disposal and to control appetite makes it an important pharmacologic target for the treatment of type 2 diabetes and obesity.

  6. Inhaler Reminders Significantly Improve Asthma Patients' Use of Controller Medications

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... controller medications Share | Inhaler reminders significantly improve asthma patients’ use of controller medications Published Online: July 22, ... the burden and risk of asthma, but many patients do not use them regularly. This poor adherence ...

  7. Significant improvement in the thermal annealing process of optical resonators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salzenstein, Patrice; Zarubin, Mikhail

    2017-05-01

    Thermal annealing performed during process improves the quality of the roughness of optical resonators reducing stresses at the periphery of their surface thus allowing higher Q-factors. After a preliminary realization, the design of the oven and the electronic method were significantly improved thanks to nichrome resistant alloy wires and chopped basalt fibers for thermal isolation during the annealing process. Q-factors can then be improved.

  8. Signal Processing for Improved Wireless Receiver Performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Lars P.B.

    2007-01-01

    This thesis is concerned with signal processing for improving the performance of wireless communication receivers for well-established cellular networks such as the GSM/EDGE and WCDMA/HSPA systems. The goal of doing so, is to improve the end-user experience and/or provide a higher system capacity...... by allowing an increased reuse of network resources. To achieve this goal, one must first understand the nature of the problem and an introduction is therefore provided. In addition, the concept of graph-based models and approximations for wireless communications is introduced along with various Belief...... Propagation (BP) methods for detecting the transmitted information, including the Turbo principle. Having established a framework for the research, various approximate detection schemes are discussed. First, the general form of linear detection is presented and it is argued that this may be preferable...

  9. Development and significance of a fetal electrocardiogram recorded by signal-averaged high-amplification electrocardiography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayashi, Risa; Nakai, Kenji; Fukushima, Akimune; Itoh, Manabu; Sugiyama, Toru

    2009-03-01

    Although ultrasonic diagnostic imaging and fetal heart monitors have undergone great technological improvements, the development and use of fetal electrocardiograms to evaluate fetal arrhythmias and autonomic nervous activity have not been fully established. We verified the clinical significance of the novel signal-averaged vector-projected high amplification ECG (SAVP-ECG) method in fetuses from 48 gravidas at 32-41 weeks of gestation and in 34 neonates. SAVP-ECGs from fetuses and newborns were recorded using a modified XYZ-leads system. Once noise and maternal QRS waves were removed, the P, QRS, and T wave intervals were measured from the signal-averaged fetal ECGs. We also compared fetal and neonatal heart rates (HRs), coefficients of variation of heart rate variability (CV) as a parasympathetic nervous activity, and the ratio of low to high frequency (LF/HF ratio) as a sympathetic nervous activity. The rate of detection of a fetal ECG by SAVP-ECG was 72.9%, and the fetal and neonatal QRS and QTc intervals were not significantly different. The neonatal CVs and LF/HF ratios were significantly increased compared with those in the fetus. In conclusion, we have developed a fetal ECG recording method using the SAVP-ECG system, which we used to evaluate autonomic nervous system development.

  10. Training directionally selective motion pathways can significantly improve reading efficiency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawton, Teri

    2004-06-01

    This study examined whether perceptual learning at early levels of visual processing would facilitate learning at higher levels of processing. This was examined by determining whether training the motion pathways by practicing leftright movement discrimination, as found previously, would improve the reading skills of inefficient readers significantly more than another computer game, a word discrimination game, or the reading program offered by the school. This controlled validation study found that practicing left-right movement discrimination 5-10 minutes twice a week (rapidly) for 15 weeks doubled reading fluency, and significantly improved all reading skills by more than one grade level, whereas inefficient readers in the control groups barely improved on these reading skills. In contrast to previous studies of perceptual learning, these experiments show that perceptual learning of direction discrimination significantly improved reading skills determined at higher levels of cognitive processing, thereby being generalized to a new task. The deficits in reading performance and attentional focus experienced by the person who struggles when reading are suggested to result from an information overload, resulting from timing deficits in the direction-selectivity network proposed by Russell De Valois et al. (2000), that following practice on direction discrimination goes away. This study found that practicing direction discrimination rapidly transitions the inefficient 7-year-old reader to an efficient reader.

  11. Significant Improvement of Catalytic Efficiencies in Ionic Liquids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Song, Choong Eui; Yoon, Mi Young; Choi, Doo Seong

    2005-01-01

    The use of ionic liquids as reaction media can confer many advantages upon catalytic reactions over reactions in organic solvents. In ionic liquids, catalysts having polar or ionic character can easily be immobilized without additional structural modification and thus the ionic solutions containing the catalyst can easily be separated from the reagents and reaction products, and then, be reused. More interestingly, switching from an organic solvent to an ionic liquid often results in a significant improvement in catalytic performance (e.g., rate acceleration, (enantio)selectivity improvement and an increase in catalyst stability). In this review, some recent interesting results which can nicely demonstrate these positive 'ionic liquid effect' on catalysis are discussed

  12. Bedtime Blood Pressure Chronotherapy Significantly Improves Hypertension Management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermida, Ramón C; Ayala, Diana E; Fernández, José R; Mojón, Artemio; Crespo, Juan J; Ríos, María T; Smolensky, Michael H

    2017-10-01

    Consistent evidence of numerous studies substantiates the asleep blood pressure (BP) mean derived from ambulatory BP monitoring (ABPM) is both an independent and a stronger predictor of cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk than are daytime clinic BP measurements or the ABPM-determined awake or 24-hour BP means. Hence, cost-effective adequate control of sleep-time BP is of marked clinical relevance. Ingestion time, according to circadian rhythms, of hypertension medications of 6 different classes and their combinations significantly improves BP control, particularly sleep-time BP, and reduces adverse effects. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. [Improvement of Phi bodies stain and its clinical significance].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Xu-Bo; Lu, Xing-Guo; Yan, Li-Juan; Xiao, Xi-Bin; Wu, Dong; Xu, Gen-Bo; Zhang, Xiao-Hong; Zhao, Xiao-Ying

    2009-02-01

    The aim of this study was to improve the dyeing method of hydroperoxidase (HPO), to analyze the morphologic features of Phi bodies and to evaluate the clinical application of this method. 128 bone marrow or peripheral blood smears from patients with myeloid and lymphoid malignancies were stained by improved HPO staining. The Phi bodies were observed with detection rate of Phi bodies in different leukemias. 69 acute myeloid leukemia (AML) specimens were chosen randomly, the positive rate and the number of Phi bodies between the improved HPO and POX stain based on the same substrate of 3, 3'diaminobenzidine were compared. The results showed that the shape of bundle-like Phi bodies was variable, long or short. while the nubbly Phi bodies often presented oval and smooth. Club-like Phi bodies were found in M(3). The detection rates of bundle-like Phi bodies in AML M(1)-M(5) were 42.9% (6/14), 83.3% (15/18), 92.0% (23/25), 52.3% (11/21), 33.3% (5/15) respectively, and those of nubbly Phi bodies were 28.6% (4/14), 66.7% (12/18), 11.1% (3/25), 33.3% (7/21), 20.0% (3/15) respectively. The detection rate of bundle-like Phi bodies in M(3) was significantly higher than that in (M(1) + M(2)) or (M(4) + M(5)) groups. The detection rate of nubbly Phi bodies in (M(1) + M(2)) group was higher than that in M(3) group. In conclusion, after improvement of staining method, the HPO stain becomes simple, the detection rate of Phi bodies is higher than that by the previous method, the positive granules are more obvious, and the results become stable. This improved method plays an important role in differentiating AML from ALL, subtyping AML, and evaluating the therapeutic results.

  14. Ceramic Composite Intermediate Temperature Stress-Rupture Properties Improved Significantly

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morscher, Gregory N.; Hurst, Janet B.

    2002-01-01

    Silicon carbide (SiC) composites are considered to be potential materials for future aircraft engine parts such as combustor liners. It is envisioned that on the hot side (inner surface) of the combustor liner, composites will have to withstand temperatures in excess of 1200 C for thousands of hours in oxidizing environments. This is a severe condition; however, an equally severe, if not more detrimental, condition exists on the cold side (outer surface) of the combustor liner. Here, the temperatures are expected to be on the order of 800 to 1000 C under high tensile stress because of thermal gradients and attachment of the combustor liner to the engine frame (the hot side will be under compressive stress, a less severe stress-state for ceramics). Since these composites are not oxides, they oxidize. The worst form of oxidation for strength reduction occurs at these intermediate temperatures, where the boron nitride (BN) interphase oxidizes first, which causes the formation of a glass layer that strongly bonds the fibers to the matrix. When the fibers strongly bond to the matrix or to one another, the composite loses toughness and strength and becomes brittle. To increase the intermediate temperature stress-rupture properties, researchers must modify the BN interphase. With the support of the Ultra-Efficient Engine Technology (UEET) Program, significant improvements were made as state-of-the-art SiC/SiC composites were developed during the Enabling Propulsion Materials (EPM) program. Three approaches were found to improve the intermediate-temperature stress-rupture properties: fiber-spreading, high-temperature silicon- (Si) doped boron nitride (BN), and outside-debonding BN.

  15. Improved moment scaling estimation for multifractal signals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Veneziano

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available A fundamental problem in the analysis of multifractal processes is to estimate the scaling exponent K(q of moments of different order q from data. Conventional estimators use the empirical moments μ^rq=⟨ | εr(τ|q of wavelet coefficients εr(τ, where τ is location and r is resolution. For stationary measures one usually considers "wavelets of order 0" (averages, whereas for functions with multifractal increments one must use wavelets of order at least 1. One obtains K^(q as the slope of log( μ^rq against log(r over a range of r. Negative moments are sensitive to measurement noise and quantization. For them, one typically uses only the local maxima of | εr(τ| (modulus maxima methods. For the positive moments, we modify the standard estimator K^(q to significantly reduce its variance at the expense of a modest increase in the bias. This is done by separately estimating K(q from sub-records and averaging the results. For the negative moments, we show that the standard modulus maxima estimator is biased and, in the case of additive noise or quantization, is not applicable with wavelets of order 1 or higher. For these cases we propose alternative estimators. We also consider the fitting of parametric models of K(q and show how, by splitting the record into sub-records as indicated above, the accuracy of standard methods can be significantly improved.

  16. Clinical significance of pontine high signals identified on magnetic resonance imaging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watanabe, Masaki; Takahashi, Akira; Arahata, Yutaka; Motegi, Yoshimasa; Furuse, Masahiro.

    1993-01-01

    Spin-echo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was evaluated to 530 cases in order to investigate the clinical significance of pontine high signals. The subjects comprised 109 cases of pontine infarction with high signal on T 2 -weighted image and low signal on T 1 -weighted image (PI group), 145 of pontine high signal with high signal on T 2 -weighted image but normal signal on T 1 -weighted image (PH group) and 276 of age-matched control without abnormality either on T 1 or T 2 -weighted images (AC group). Subjective complaints such as vertigo-dizziness were more frequent in the PH group than in the PI group. In both PI and groups, periventricular hyperintensity as well as subcortical high signals in the supratentorium were more severe than in the AC group. These degrees were higher in the PI group than in the PH group. In conclusion, PH as well as PI may result from diffuse arteriosclerosis and PH is considered to be an early finding of pontine ischemia. (author)

  17. Clinical significance of pontine high signals identified on magnetic resonance imaging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Watanabe, Masaki; Takahashi, Akira (Nagoya Univ. (Japan). Faculty of Medicine); Arahata, Yutaka; Motegi, Yoshimasa; Furuse, Masahiro

    1993-07-01

    Spin-echo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was evaluated to 530 cases in order to investigate the clinical significance of pontine high signals. The subjects comprised 109 cases of pontine infarction with high signal on T[sub 2]-weighted image and low signal on T[sub 1]-weighted image (PI group), 145 of pontine high signal with high signal on T[sub 2]-weighted image but normal signal on T[sub 1]-weighted image (PH group) and 276 of age-matched control without abnormality either on T[sub 1] or T[sub 2]-weighted images (AC group). Subjective complaints such as vertigo-dizziness were more frequent in the PH group than in the PI group. In both PI and groups, periventricular hyperintensity as well as subcortical high signals in the supratentorium were more severe than in the AC group. These degrees were higher in the PI group than in the PH group. In conclusion, PH as well as PI may result from diffuse arteriosclerosis and PH is considered to be an early finding of pontine ischemia. (author).

  18. Multi-day radon signals with a radioactive decay limb-Occurrence and geophysical significance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Steinitz, G.; Martin, M.C.; Gazit-Yaari, N.; Quesada, M.L.; Nuez, J. de la; Casillas, R.; Malik, U.; Begin, Z.B.

    2006-01-01

    Multi-day signals, generally with duration of 2-10 days, are a prominent temporal variation type of radon (Rn) in geo gas in the unsaturated zone. Rare multi-day Rn signals have been found which are characterized by: (a) a declining limb lasting up to 10 days which conforms to the radioactive decay of Rn (b) recurs at the same location and (c) is recorded in diverse situations-volcanic and seismogenic. It suggested that a Rn blob is injected at a lower level on a steady upward flow of geogas whereby the rise and final fall of the signal are attributed to the edges of the blob while the central Rn-decay segment records the passing of the decaying blob itself. Rn-decay signals are a small subset of multi-day Rn signals which are considered as highly irregular and unusable for the understanding of geophysical processes. In difference, it is concluded that multi-day Rn signals are probably proxies of subtle geodynamic processes at upper crustal levels and are therefore significant for studying such processes

  19. Methylphenidate significantly improves declarative memory functioning of adults with ADHD.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verster, J.C.; Bekker, E.M.; Kooij, J.J.; Buitelaar, J.K.; Verbaten, M.N.; Volkerts, E.R.; Olivier, B.

    2010-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Declarative memory deficits are common in untreated adults with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), but limited evidence exists to support improvement after treatment with methylphenidate. The objective of this study was to examine the effects of methylphenidate on memory

  20. Diversity combining in laser Doppler vibrometry for improved signal reliability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dräbenstedt, Alexander

    2014-01-01

    Because of the speckle nature of the light reflected from rough surfaces the signal quality of a vibrometer suffers from varying signal power. Deep signal outages manifest themselves as noise bursts and spikes in the demodulated velocity signal. Here we show that the signal quality of a single point vibrometer can be substantially improved by diversity reception. This concept is widely used in RF communication and can be transferred into optical interferometry. When two statistically independent measurement channels are available which measure the same motion on the same spot, the probability for both channels to see a signal drop-out at the same time is very low. We built a prototype instrument that uses polarization diversity to constitute two independent reception channels that are separately demodulated into velocity signals. Send and receive beams go through different parts of the aperture so that the beams can be spatially separated. The two velocity channels are mixed into one more reliable signal by a PC program in real time with the help of the signal power information. An algorithm has been developed that ensures a mixing of two or more channels with minimum resulting variance. The combination algorithm delivers also an equivalent signal power for the combined signal. The combined signal lacks the vast majority of spikes that are present in the raw signals and it extracts the true vibration information present in both channels. A statistical analysis shows that the probability for deep signal outages is largely decreased. A 60 fold improvement can be shown. The reduction of spikes and noise bursts reduces the noise in the spectral analysis of vibrations too. Over certain frequency bands a reduction of the noise density by a factor above 10 can be shown

  1. High signal intensity of the septum pellucidum at MR imaging; Significance in hydrocephalus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yoon, Jeong Hee; Kim, Eun Ha; Chung, Chun Phil; Kim, Chang Soo

    1994-01-01

    To evaluate the significance of high signal intensity of the septum pellucidum in hydrocephalus on proton density-weighted brain MR images. Authors reviewed the MR images of 418 cases of patients with normal (175 case), hydrocephalic(35 cases), atrophic(58 cases), and other groups(150 cases) retrospectively. We analyzed the signal intensity of the septum pellucidum in the normal group and the incidences of high signal intensities of periventricular area of frontal horn of lateral ventricle(area 1), periventricular area except area 1 (area 2), callososeptal area(area 3), and septum pellucidum(area 4) in the normal and abnormal groups. In the normal group, the septum pellucidum was isointense to the head of caudate nucleus on proton density-weighted image. High signal intensity of the septum pellucidum was seen in 31 cases (22 cases of hydrocephalus, 5 cases of brain atrophy, and 4 cases of others), and showed high specificity(91.4%) for hydrocephalus in spite of low sensitivity(62.9%), as compared with periventricular hyperintensities of other areas. High signal intensity of the septum pellucidum on proton density- weighted image may be caused by transependymal CSF migration in the patients with hydrocephalus, and considered as an additional finding of hydrocephalus in the cases of ventriculomegaly

  2. Warning Signals for Poor Performance Improve Human-Robot Interaction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van den Brule, Rik; Bijlstra, Gijsbert; Dotsch, Ron; Haselager, Pim; Wigboldus, Daniel HJ

    2016-01-01

    The present research was aimed at investigating whether human-robot interaction (HRI) can be improved by a robot’s nonverbal warning signals. Ideally, when a robot signals that it cannot guarantee good performance, people could take preventive actions to ensure the successful completion of the

  3. Lidar signal-to-noise ratio improvements: Considerations and techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassebo, Yasser Y.

    minimize detected sky background noise while maintaining maximum lidar signal throughput. Measurements, carried at 532 nm, show as much as a factor of 10 improvement in SNR and the attainable lidar range up to 34% over conventional un-polarized schemes. For vertically pointing lidars, the largest improvements are limited to the early morning and late afternoon hours, while for lidars scanning azimuthally and in elevation at angles other than vertical, significant improvements are achievable over more extended time periods. Observed changes in SNR improvements were also related to relative humidity and modification of underlying aerosol microphysics. A second, distinct objective of this research was to utilize multiwavelength lidar techniques to separate plume and cloud particles. Choice of the study location and time for this work was driven mainly by the availability of satellite data collected by NASA INTEX-NA and NOAA NEAQS experiment over New York City on July 21, 2004 in support of MODIS imagery. The lidar results identify smoke plumes over New York City and validate the plume source origin location using NOAA-HYSPLIT back trajectory analysis. Surface measurements, at the time, from in-situ particle counters are presented and show no enhanced PM2.5 loading. This result is supported by lidar measurements, which confirm that nearly all of the aerosol plumes are located above the normal aerosol boundary layer showing that satellite measurements are often incomplete and are not sufficient for assessing surface air quality.

  4. Creating a Middle Grades Environment that Significantly Improves Student Achievement

    Science.gov (United States)

    L'Esperance, Mark E.; Lenker, Ethan; Bullock, Ann; Lockamy, Becky; Mason, Cathy

    2013-01-01

    This article offers an overview of the framework that Sampson County Public Schools (North Carolina) used to critically reflect on the current state of their middle grades schools. The article also highlights the changes that resulted from the district-wide analysis and the ways in which these changes led to a significant increase in the academic…

  5. Improved prediction of signal peptides: SignalP 3.0

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bendtsen, Jannick Dyrløv; Nielsen, Henrik; von Heijne, G.

    2004-01-01

    We describe improvements of the currently most popular method for prediction of classically secreted proteins, SignalP. SignalP consists of two different predictors based on neural network and hidden Markov model algorithms, where both components have been updated. Motivated by the idea that the ...

  6. Low-dose vaporized cannabis significantly improves neuropathic pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilsey, Barth; Marcotte, Thomas; Deutsch, Reena; Gouaux, Ben; Sakai, Staci; Donaghe, Haylee

    2013-02-01

    We conducted a double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study evaluating the analgesic efficacy of vaporized cannabis in subjects, the majority of whom were experiencing neuropathic pain despite traditional treatment. Thirty-nine patients with central and peripheral neuropathic pain underwent a standardized procedure for inhaling medium-dose (3.53%), low-dose (1.29%), or placebo cannabis with the primary outcome being visual analog scale pain intensity. Psychoactive side effects and neuropsychological performance were also evaluated. Mixed-effects regression models demonstrated an analgesic response to vaporized cannabis. There was no significant difference between the 2 active dose groups' results (P > .7). The number needed to treat (NNT) to achieve 30% pain reduction was 3.2 for placebo versus low-dose, 2.9 for placebo versus medium-dose, and 25 for medium- versus low-dose. As these NNTs are comparable to those of traditional neuropathic pain medications, cannabis has analgesic efficacy with the low dose being as effective a pain reliever as the medium dose. Psychoactive effects were minimal and well tolerated, and neuropsychological effects were of limited duration and readily reversible within 1 to 2 hours. Vaporized cannabis, even at low doses, may present an effective option for patients with treatment-resistant neuropathic pain. The analgesia obtained from a low dose of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (1.29%) in patients, most of whom were experiencing neuropathic pain despite conventional treatments, is a clinically significant outcome. In general, the effect sizes on cognitive testing were consistent with this minimal dose. As a result, one might not anticipate a significant impact on daily functioning. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  7. Electrocardiogram signal denoising based on a new improved wavelet thresholding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Guoqiang; Xu, Zhijun

    2016-08-01

    Good quality electrocardiogram (ECG) is utilized by physicians for the interpretation and identification of physiological and pathological phenomena. In general, ECG signals may mix various noises such as baseline wander, power line interference, and electromagnetic interference in gathering and recording process. As ECG signals are non-stationary physiological signals, wavelet transform is investigated to be an effective tool to discard noises from corrupted signals. A new compromising threshold function called sigmoid function-based thresholding scheme is adopted in processing ECG signals. Compared with other methods such as hard/soft thresholding or other existing thresholding functions, the new algorithm has many advantages in the noise reduction of ECG signals. It perfectly overcomes the discontinuity at ±T of hard thresholding and reduces the fixed deviation of soft thresholding. The improved wavelet thresholding denoising can be proved to be more efficient than existing algorithms in ECG signal denoising. The signal to noise ratio, mean square error, and percent root mean square difference are calculated to verify the denoising performance as quantitative tools. The experimental results reveal that the waves including P, Q, R, and S waves of ECG signals after denoising coincide with the original ECG signals by employing the new proposed method.

  8. Low Dose Vaporized Cannabis Significantly Improves Neuropathic Pain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilsey, Barth; Marcotte, Thomas D.; Deutsch, Reena; Gouaux, Ben; Sakai, Staci; Donaghe, Haylee

    2013-01-01

    We conducted a double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study evaluating the analgesic efficacy of vaporized cannabis in subjects, the majority of whom were experiencing neuropathic pain despite traditional treatment. Thirty-nine patients with central and peripheral neuropathic pain underwent a standardized procedure for inhaling either medium dose (3.53%), low dose (1.29%), or placebo cannabis with the primary outcome being VAS pain intensity. Psychoactive side-effects, and neuropsychological performance were also evaluated. Mixed effects regression models demonstrated an analgesic response to vaporized cannabis. There was no significant difference between the two active dose groups’ results (p>0.7). The number needed to treat (NNT) to achieve 30% pain reduction was 3.2 for placebo vs. low dose, 2.9 for placebo vs. medium dose, and 25 for medium vs. low dose. As these NNT are comparable to those of traditional neuropathic pain medications, cannabis has analgesic efficacy with the low dose being, for all intents and purposes, as effective a pain reliever as the medium dose. Psychoactive effects were minimal and well-tolerated, and neuropsychological effects were of limited duration and readily reversible within 1–2 hours. Vaporized cannabis, even at low doses, may present an effective option for patients with treatment-resistant neuropathic pain. PMID:23237736

  9. Balanced detection for self-mixing interferometry to improve signal-to-noise ratio

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Changming; Norgia, Michele; Li, Kun

    2018-01-01

    We apply balanced detection to self-mixing interferometry for displacement and vibration measurement, using two photodiodes for implementing a differential acquisition. The method is based on the phase opposition of the self-mixing signal measured between the two laser diode facet outputs. The balanced signal obtained by enlarging the self-mixing signal, also by canceling of the common-due noises mainly due to disturbances on laser supply and transimpedance amplifier. Experimental results demonstrate the signal-to-noise ratio significantly improves, with almost twice signals enhancement and more than half noise decreasing. This method allows for more robust, longer-distance measurement systems, especially using fringe-counting.

  10. Improved insulin sensitivity after exercise: focus on insulin signaling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frøsig, Christian; Richter, Erik

    2009-01-01

    After a single bout of exercise, the ability of insulin to stimulate glucose uptake is markedly improved locally in the previously active muscles. This makes exercise a potent stimulus counteracting insulin resistance characterizing type 2 diabetes (T2D). It is believed that at least part...... of the mechanism relates to an improved ability of insulin to stimulate translocation of glucose transporters (GLUT4) to the muscle membrane after exercise. How this is accomplished is still unclear; however, an obvious possibility is that exercise interacts with the insulin signaling pathway to GLUT4...... translocation allowing for a more potent insulin response. Parallel to unraveling of the insulin signaling cascade, this has been investigated within the past 25 years. Reviewing existing studies clearly indicates that improved insulin action can occur independent of interactions with proximal insulin signaling...

  11. Oversampling ad converters with improved signal transfer functions

    CERN Document Server

    Pandita, Bupesh

    2011-01-01

    This book describes techniques for designing complex, discrete-time I""IGBP ADCs with signal-transfer functions that significantly filter interfering signals. The book provides an understanding of theory, issues, and implementation of discrete complex I""IGBP ADCs. The concepts developed in each chapter are further explained by applying them to a target application of I""IGBP ADCs in DTV receivers.

  12. Significant improvement in one-dimensional cursor control using Laplacian electroencephalography over electroencephalography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boudria, Yacine; Feltane, Amal; Besio, Walter

    2014-06-01

    Objective. Brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) based on electroencephalography (EEG) have been shown to accurately detect mental activities, but the acquisition of high levels of control require extensive user training. Furthermore, EEG has low signal-to-noise ratio and low spatial resolution. The objective of the present study was to compare the accuracy between two types of BCIs during the first recording session. EEG and tripolar concentric ring electrode (TCRE) EEG (tEEG) brain signals were recorded and used to control one-dimensional cursor movements. Approach. Eight human subjects were asked to imagine either ‘left’ or ‘right’ hand movement during one recording session to control the computer cursor using TCRE and disc electrodes. Main results. The obtained results show a significant improvement in accuracies using TCREs (44%-100%) compared to disc electrodes (30%-86%). Significance. This study developed the first tEEG-based BCI system for real-time one-dimensional cursor movements and showed high accuracies with little training.

  13. Improvement of Source Number Estimation Method for Single Channel Signal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhi Dong

    Full Text Available Source number estimation methods for single channel signal have been investigated and the improvements for each method are suggested in this work. Firstly, the single channel data is converted to multi-channel form by delay process. Then, algorithms used in the array signal processing, such as Gerschgorin's disk estimation (GDE and minimum description length (MDL, are introduced to estimate the source number of the received signal. The previous results have shown that the MDL based on information theoretic criteria (ITC obtains a superior performance than GDE at low SNR. However it has no ability to handle the signals containing colored noise. On the contrary, the GDE method can eliminate the influence of colored noise. Nevertheless, its performance at low SNR is not satisfactory. In order to solve these problems and contradictions, the work makes remarkable improvements on these two methods on account of the above consideration. A diagonal loading technique is employed to ameliorate the MDL method and a jackknife technique is referenced to optimize the data covariance matrix in order to improve the performance of the GDE method. The results of simulation have illustrated that the performance of original methods have been promoted largely.

  14. Neuropsychological significance of areas of high signal intensity on brain MRIs of children with neurofibromatosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, B D; Slopis, J M; Schomer, D; Jackson, E F; Levy, B M

    1996-06-01

    Of children with neurofibromatosis (NF), 40% have a cognitive or learning impairment. Approximately 60% also have anomalous areas of high signal intensity on T2-weighted brain MRIs. The association of these hyperintensities and neuropsychological status is not fully understood. We administered a battery of neuropsychological tests and a standard clinical MRI to determine the impact of hyperintensity presence, number, and location on cognitive status in 84 children (8 to 16 years) with NF type 1. These children underwent standard clinical MRI using a GE 1.5-tesla scanner (except one child who was examined with a 1.0-tesla scanner). We conducted three types of analyses: Hyperintensity presence or absence.-Scores of children with (55%) and without hyperintensities (45%) were compared using t tests. No statistically significant differences between groups in intellectual functioning or any neuropsychological variable were found. Number of hyperintensities-The number of hyperintensity locations per child ranged from one to five (mean = 2.22). Pearson correlations revealed no significant association between the number of hyperintensities and neuropsychological performance. Location of hyperintensities-In four of the five locations studied, no statistically significant differences were found between scores of children with a hyperintensity in an area and those with one elsewhere. However, mean scores for IQ, Memory, Motor, Distractibility, and Attention domains for children with hyperintensities in the thalamus were significantly lower than scores for those with hyperintensities elsewhere. These results suggest that the simple presence or absence of hyperintensities, or their total number, is not as important as their anatomic location for detecting their relationship with neuropsychological status. Taking location into account, hyperintensities in the cerebral hemispheres, basal ganglia, brainstem, or cerebellum seem to have no impact on neuropsychological functioning

  15. Improvement to the signaling interface for CMOS pixel sensors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shi, Zhan, E-mail: sz1134@163.com [Dalian University of Technology, No.2 Linggong Road, 116024 Dalian (China); Tang, Zhenan, E-mail: tangza@dlut.edu.cn [Dalian University of Technology, No.2 Linggong Road, 116024 Dalian (China); Feng, Chong [Dalian University of Technology, No.2 Linggong Road, 116024 Dalian (China); Dalian Minzu University, No.18 Liaohe West Road, 116600 Dalian (China); Cai, Hong [Dalian University of Technology, No.2 Linggong Road, 116024 Dalian (China)

    2016-10-01

    The development of the readout speed of CMOS pixel sensors (CPS) is motivated by the demanding requirements of future high energy physics (HEP) experiments. As the interface between CPS and the data acquisition (DAQ) system, which inputs clock from the DAQ system and outputs data from CPS, the signaling interface should also be improved in terms of data rates. Meanwhile, the power consumption of the signaling interface should be maintained as low as possible. Consequently, a reduced swing differential signaling (RSDS) driver was adopted instead of a low-voltage differential signaling (LVDS) driver to transmit data from CPS to the DAQ system. In order to increase the capability of data rates, a serial source termination technique was employed. A LVDS/RSDS receiver was employed for transmitting clock from the DAQ system to CPS. A new method of generating hysteresis and a special current comparator were used to achieve a higher speed with lower power consumption. The signaling interface was designed and submitted for fabrication in a 0.18 µm CMOS image sensor (CIS) process. Measurement results indicate that the RSDS driver and the LVDS receiver can operate correctly at a data rate of 2 Gb/s with a power consumption of 19.1 mW.

  16. Correlation techniques for the improvement of signal-to-noise ratio in measurements with stochastic processes

    CERN Document Server

    Reddy, V R; Reddy, T G; Reddy, P Y; Reddy, K R

    2003-01-01

    An AC modulation technique is described to convert stochastic signal variations into an amplitude variation and its retrieval through Fourier analysis. It is shown that this AC detection of signals of stochastic processes when processed through auto- and cross-correlation techniques improve the signal-to-noise ratio; the correlation techniques serve a similar purpose of frequency and phase filtering as that of phase-sensitive detection. A few model calculations applied to nuclear spectroscopy measurements such as Angular Correlations, Mossbauer spectroscopy and Pulse Height Analysis reveal considerable improvement in the sensitivity of signal detection. Experimental implementation of the technique is presented in terms of amplitude variations of harmonics representing the derivatives of normal spectra. Improved detection sensitivity to spectral variations is shown to be significant. These correlation techniques are general and can be made applicable to all the fields of particle counting where measurements ar...

  17. Wavelet analysis to decompose a vibration simulation signal to improve pre-distribution testing of packaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffiths, K. R.; Hicks, B. J.; Keogh, P. S.; Shires, D.

    2016-08-01

    In general, vehicle vibration is non-stationary and has a non-Gaussian probability distribution; yet existing testing methods for packaging design employ Gaussian distributions to represent vibration induced by road profiles. This frequently results in over-testing and/or over-design of the packaging to meet a specification and correspondingly leads to wasteful packaging and product waste, which represent 15bn per year in the USA and €3bn per year in the EU. The purpose of the paper is to enable a measured non-stationary acceleration signal to be replaced by a constructed signal that includes as far as possible any non-stationary characteristics from the original signal. The constructed signal consists of a concatenation of decomposed shorter duration signals, each having its own kurtosis level. Wavelet analysis is used for the decomposition process into inner and outlier signal components. The constructed signal has a similar PSD to the original signal, without incurring excessive acceleration levels. This allows an improved and more representative simulated input signal to be generated that can be used on the current generation of shaker tables. The wavelet decomposition method is also demonstrated experimentally through two correlation studies. It is shown that significant improvements over current international standards for packaging testing are achievable; hence the potential for more efficient packaging system design is possible.

  18. Clinical significance of the globus pallidus signal intensity ratio in patients with liver cirrhosis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Iwasa, Motoh; Kawamura, Noriko; Hiranuma, Kiyohiko [Kuwana Municipal Hospital, Mie (Japan)] [and others

    1996-11-01

    The object of this study was to evaluate the clinical value of the globus pallidus signal intensity ratio for the subclinical detection of hepatic encephalopathy. This study comprised 25 patients with liver cirrhosis without overt hepatic encephalopathy. There was a high frequency (56%) of patients exhibiting increased signal in the globus pallidus. The pallidal signal was related to the severity of the liver disease. The auditory brain stem reaction was not correlated with the pallidal intensity and laboratory parameters. During the follow-up study, 3 out of 5 patients presenting overt hepatic encephalopathy showed strong pallidal signals. The results of this investigation suggest that abnormal globus pallidus signal may constitute a useful method for the subclinical detection of hepatic encepalopathy. (author)

  19. Clinical significance of the globus pallidus signal intensity ratio in patients with liver cirrhosis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Iwasa, Motoh; Kawamura, Noriko; Hiranuma, Kiyohiko

    1996-01-01

    The object of this study was to evaluate the clinical value of the globus pallidus signal intensity ratio for the subclinical detection of hepatic encephalopathy. This study comprised 25 patients with liver cirrhosis without overt hepatic encephalopathy. There was a high frequency (56%) of patients exhibiting increased signal in the globus pallidus. The pallidal signal was related to the severity of the liver disease. The auditory brain stem reaction was not correlated with the pallidal intensity and laboratory parameters. During the follow-up study, 3 out of 5 patients presenting overt hepatic encephalopathy showed strong pallidal signals. The results of this investigation suggest that abnormal globus pallidus signal may constitute a useful method for the subclinical detection of hepatic encepalopathy. (author)

  20. 47 CFR 76.54 - Significantly viewed signals; method to be followed for special showings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... located, in whole or in part, and on all other system community units, franchisees, and franchise.... 339(d). (j) Notwithstanding the requirements of this section, the signal of a television broadcast...

  1. Zinc in Cellular Regulation: The Nature and Significance of "Zinc Signals".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maret, Wolfgang

    2017-10-31

    In the last decade, we witnessed discoveries that established Zn 2+ as a second major signalling metal ion in the transmission of information within cells and in communication between cells. Together with Ca 2+ and Mg 2+ , Zn 2+ covers biological regulation with redox-inert metal ions over many orders of magnitude in concentrations. The regulatory functions of zinc ions, together with their functions as a cofactor in about three thousand zinc metalloproteins, impact virtually all aspects of cell biology. This article attempts to define the regulatory functions of zinc ions, and focuses on the nature of zinc signals and zinc signalling in pathways where zinc ions are either extracellular stimuli or intracellular messengers. These pathways interact with Ca 2+ , redox, and phosphorylation signalling. The regulatory functions of zinc require a complex system of precise homeostatic control for transients, subcellular distribution and traffic, organellar homeostasis, and vesicular storage and exocytosis of zinc ions.

  2. Targeted Gene-Silencing Reveals the Functional Significance of Myocardin Signaling in the Failing Heart

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torrado, Mario; Iglesias, Raquel; Centeno, Alberto; López, Eduardo; Mikhailov, Alexander T.

    2011-01-01

    Background Myocardin (MYOCD), a potent transcriptional coactivator of smooth muscle (SM) and cardiac genes, is upregulated in failing myocardium in animal models and human end-stage heart failure (HF). However, the molecular and functional consequences of myocd upregulation in HF are still unclear. Methodology/Principal Findings The goal of the present study was to investigate if targeted inhibition of upregulated expression of myocd could influence failing heart gene expression and function. To this end, we used the doxorubicin (Dox)-induced diastolic HF (DHF) model in neonatal piglets, in which, as we show, not only myocd but also myocd-dependent SM-marker genes are highly activated in failing left ventricular (LV) myocardium. In this model, intra-myocardial delivery of short-hairpin RNAs, designed to target myocd variants expressed in porcine heart, leads on day 2 post-delivery to: (1) a decrease in the activated expression of myocd and myocd-dependent SM-marker genes in failing myocardium to levels seen in healthy control animals, (2) amelioration of impaired diastolic dysfunction, and (3) higher survival rates of DHF piglets. The posterior restoration of elevated myocd expression (on day 7 post-delivery) led to overexpression of myocd-dependent SM-marker genes in failing LV-myocardium that was associated with a return to altered diastolic function. Conclusions/Significance These data provide the first evidence that a moderate inhibition (e.g., normalization) of the activated MYOCD signaling in the diseased heart may be promising from a therapeutic point of view. PMID:22028870

  3. Targeted gene-silencing reveals the functional significance of myocardin signaling in the failing heart.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mario Torrado

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Myocardin (MYOCD, a potent transcriptional coactivator of smooth muscle (SM and cardiac genes, is upregulated in failing myocardium in animal models and human end-stage heart failure (HF. However, the molecular and functional consequences of myocd upregulation in HF are still unclear. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The goal of the present study was to investigate if targeted inhibition of upregulated expression of myocd could influence failing heart gene expression and function. To this end, we used the doxorubicin (Dox-induced diastolic HF (DHF model in neonatal piglets, in which, as we show, not only myocd but also myocd-dependent SM-marker genes are highly activated in failing left ventricular (LV myocardium. In this model, intra-myocardial delivery of short-hairpin RNAs, designed to target myocd variants expressed in porcine heart, leads on day 2 post-delivery to: (1 a decrease in the activated expression of myocd and myocd-dependent SM-marker genes in failing myocardium to levels seen in healthy control animals, (2 amelioration of impaired diastolic dysfunction, and (3 higher survival rates of DHF piglets. The posterior restoration of elevated myocd expression (on day 7 post-delivery led to overexpression of myocd-dependent SM-marker genes in failing LV-myocardium that was associated with a return to altered diastolic function. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These data provide the first evidence that a moderate inhibition (e.g., normalization of the activated MYOCD signaling in the diseased heart may be promising from a therapeutic point of view.

  4. Study of improving signal-noise ratio for fluorescence channel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Guoqing; Li, Xin; Lou, Yue; Chen, Dong; Zhao, Xin; Wang, Ran; Yan, Debao; Zhao, Qi

    2017-10-01

    Laser-induced fluorescence(LIFS), which is one of most effective discrimination methods to identify the material at the molecular level by inducing fluorescence spectrum, has been popularized for its fast and accurate probe's results. According to the research, violet laser or ultraviolet laser is always used as excitation light source. While, There is no atmospheric window for violet laser and ultraviolet laser, causing laser attenuation along its propagation path. What's worse, as the laser reaching sample, part of the light is reflected. That is, excitation laser really react on sample to produce fluorescence is very poor, leading to weak fluorescence mingled with the background light collected by LIFS' processing unit, when it used outdoor. In order to spread LIFS to remote probing under the complex background, study of improving signal-noise ratio for fluorescence channel is a meaningful work. Enhancing the fluorescence intensity and inhibiting background light both can improve fluorescence' signal-noise ratio. In this article, three different approaches of inhibiting background light are discussed to improve the signal-noise ratio of LIFS. The first method is increasing fluorescence excitation area in the proportion of LIFS' collecting field by expanding laser beam, if the collecting filed is fixed. The second one is changing field angle base to accommodate laser divergence angle. The third one is setting a very narrow gating circuit to control acquisition circuit, which is shortly open only when fluorescence arriving. At some level, these methods all can reduce the background light. But after discussion, the third one is best with adding gating acquisition circuit to acquisition circuit instead of changing light path, which is effective and economic.

  5. The TGF-β/Smad4 Signaling Pathway in Pancreatic Carcinogenesis and Its Clinical Significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunjida Ahmed

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC is one of the most fatal human cancers due to its complicated genomic instability. PDAC frequently presents at an advanced stage with extensive metastasis, which portends a poor prognosis. The known risk factors associated with PDAC include advanced age, smoking, long-standing chronic pancreatitis, obesity, and diabetes. Its association with genomic and somatic mutations is the most important factor for its aggressiveness. The most common gene mutations associated with PDAC include KRas2, p16, TP53, and Smad4. Among these, Smad4 mutation is relatively specific and its inactivation is found in more than 50% of invasive pancreatic adenocarcinomas. Smad4 is a member of the Smad family of signal transducers and acts as a central mediator of transforming growth factor beta (TGF-β signaling pathways. The TGF-β signaling pathway promotes many physiological processes, including cell growth, differentiation, proliferation, fibrosis, and scar formation. It also plays a major role in the development of tumors through induction of angiogenesis and immune suppression. In this review, we will discuss the molecular mechanism of TGF-β/Smad4 signaling in the pathogenesis of pancreatic adenocarcinoma and its clinical implication, particularly potential as a prognostic factor and a therapeutic target.

  6. An improved large signal model of InP HEMTs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Tianhao; Li, Wenjun; Liu, Jun

    2018-05-01

    An improved large signal model for InP HEMTs is proposed in this paper. The channel current and charge model equations are constructed based on the Angelov model equations. Both the equations for channel current and gate charge models were all continuous and high order drivable, and the proposed gate charge model satisfied the charge conservation. For the strong leakage induced barrier reduction effect of InP HEMTs, the Angelov current model equations are improved. The channel current model could fit DC performance of devices. A 2 × 25 μm × 70 nm InP HEMT device is used to demonstrate the extraction and validation of the model, in which the model has predicted the DC I–V, C–V and bias related S parameters accurately. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 61331006).

  7. National Emergency Preparedness and Response: Improving for Incidents of National Significance

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Clayton, Christopher M

    2006-01-01

    The national emergency management system has need of significant improvement in its contingency planning and early consolidation of effort and coordination between federal, state, and local agencies...

  8. Nicotine Significantly Improves Chronic Stress-Induced Impairments of Cognition and Synaptic Plasticity in Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Xueliang; Shang, Yingchun; Fu, Jingxuan; Zhang, Tao

    2017-08-01

    The aim of this study was to examine if nicotine was able to improve cognition deficits in a mouse model of chronic mild stress. Twenty-four male C57BL/6 mice were divided into three groups: control, stress, and stress with nicotine treatment. The animal model was established by combining chronic unpredictable mild stress (CUMS) and isolated feeding. Mice were exposed to CUMS continued for 28 days, while nicotine (0.2 mg/kg) was also administrated for 28 days. Weight and sucrose consumption were measured during model establishing period. The anxiety and behavioral despair were analyzed using the forced swim test (FST) and open-field test (OFT). Spatial cognition was evaluated using Morris water maze (MWM) test. Following behavioral assessment, both long-term potentiation (LTP) and depotentiation (DEP) were recorded in the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG) region. Both synaptic and Notch1 proteins were measured by Western. Nicotine increased stressed mouse's sucrose consumption. The MWM test showed that spatial learning and reversal learning in stressed animals were remarkably affected relative to controls, whereas nicotine partially rescued cognitive functions. Additionally, nicotine considerably alleviated the level of anxiety and the degree of behavioral despair in stressed mice. It effectively mitigated the depression-induced impairment of hippocampal synaptic plasticity, in which both the LTP and DEP were significantly inhibited in stressed mice. Moreover, nicotine enhanced the expression of synaptic and Notch1 proteins in stressed animals. The results suggest that nicotine ameliorates the depression-like symptoms and improves the hippocampal synaptic plasticity closely associated with activating transmembrane ion channel receptors and Notch signaling components. Graphical Abstract ᅟ.

  9. PI 3-kinase signalling in platelets: the significance of synergistic, autocrine stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selheim, F; Holmsen, H; Vassbotn, F S

    2000-03-01

    Phosphoinositide 3-kinases (PI 3Ks) play a key role in regulation of intracellular signalling and cellular function, including cell proliferation, apoptosis, chemotaxis, membrane trafficking and platelet activation. The PI 3Ks are grouped into three classes on the basis on their structure and in vitro substrate specificity. Class I are activated by a variety of agonists which mediate their effect through tyrosine kinase-linked or G-protein-linked receptors. In vivo class I PI 3Ks seem to preferentially phosphorylate the D3 hydroxyls of the inositol moiety of PtdIns(4,5)P2 to produce PtdIns(3,4,5)P3. However, class II PI 3Ks preferentially phosphorylate the D3 hydroxyl of PtdIns and PtdIns(4)P to produce PtdIns(3)P and PtdIns(3,4)P2, respectively. The late accumulation of PtdIns(3,4)P2 has been suggested to play an important role in irreversible platelet aggregation. In human platelets the class II PI 3K isoform HsC2-PI 3K is activated in an integrin alpha IIb beta 3 + fibrinogen-dependent manner. Class III PI 3Ks phosphorylate PtdIns to produce PtdIns(3)P, which play a crucial role in vesicular trafficking. Recent work has suggested that crosstalk between individual receptors and their downstream signal pathways play a central role in PI 3K signalling responses. In this review, we will concentrate on recent advances regarding the regulation of platelet PI 3Ks.

  10. On the Perception of Speech Sounds as Biologically Significant Signals1,2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pisoni, David B.

    2012-01-01

    This paper reviews some of the major evidence and arguments currently available to support the view that human speech perception may require the use of specialized neural mechanisms for perceptual analysis. Experiments using synthetically produced speech signals with adults are briefly summarized and extensions of these results to infants and other organisms are reviewed with an emphasis towards detailing those aspects of speech perception that may require some need for specialized species-specific processors. Finally, some comments on the role of early experience in perceptual development are provided as an attempt to identify promising areas of new research in speech perception. PMID:399200

  11. Significance of spin-echo intracardiac signal during cine cardiac MR imaging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feiglin, D.H.I.; O'Donnell, J.K.

    1987-01-01

    Thirty patient studies were performed using several multisection spin multi-echo pulse sequences (SEPS) formattable into the cine mode, with repetition time (TR)≤RR interval and 18 msec ≤ echo time (TE) ≤ 64 msec. Thirteen studies were performed in patients with various cardiomyopathies, ten in patients with cardiac tumors, and seven in healthy volunteers. The SEPS in the multi-echo acquisition format differentiated between tumor and stasis in terms of signal behavior. Healthy subjects may exhibit stasis of flow adjacent to the endocardium during the cardiac cycle

  12. Enhancement of MS Signal Processing For Improved Cancer Biomarker Discovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Si, Qian

    Technological advances in proteomics have shown great potential in detecting cancer at the earliest stages. One way is to use the time of flight mass spectroscopy to identify biomarkers, or early disease indicators related to the cancer. Pattern analysis of time of flight mass spectra data from blood and tissue samples gives great hope for the identification of potential biomarkers among the complex mixture of biological and chemical samples for the early cancer detection. One of the keys issues is the pre-processing of raw mass spectra data. A lot of challenges need to be addressed: unknown noise character associated with the large volume of data, high variability in the mass spectroscopy measurements, and poorly understood signal background and so on. This dissertation focuses on developing statistical algorithms and creating data mining tools for computationally improved signal processing for mass spectrometry data. I have introduced an advanced accurate estimate of the noise model and a half-supervised method of mass spectrum data processing which requires little knowledge about the data.

  13. Frameworks for improvement: clinical audit, the plan-do-study-act cycle and significant event audit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillam, Steve; Siriwardena, A Niroshan

    2013-01-01

    This is the first in a series of articles about quality improvement tools and techniques. We explore common frameworks for improvement, including the model for improvement and its application to clinical audit, plan-do-study-act (PDSA) cycles and significant event analysis (SEA), examining the similarities and differences between these and providing examples of each.

  14. Improved signal analysis for motional Stark effect data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Makowski, M.A.; Allen, S.L.; Ellis, R.; Geer, R.; Jayakumar, R.J.; Moller, J.M.; Rice, B.W.

    2005-01-01

    Nonideal effects in the optical train of the motional Stark effect diagnostic have been modeled using the Mueller matrix formalism. The effects examined are birefringence in the vacuum windows, an imperfect reflective mirror, and signal pollution due to the presence of a circularly polarized light component. Relations for the measured intensity ratio are developed for each case. These relations suggest fitting functions to more accurately model the calibration data. One particular function, termed the tangent offset model, is found to fit the data for all channels better than the currently used tangent slope function. Careful analysis of the calibration data with the fitting functions reveals that a nonideal effect is present in the edge array and is attributed to nonideal performance of a mirror in that system. The result of applying the fitting function to the analysis of our data has been to improve the equilibrium reconstruction

  15. Improving Multi Access Interference Suppression in Optical CDMA by using all-Optical Signal Processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. B. Osadola

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the study of a novel all-optical method for processing optical CDMA signals towards improving suppression of multi access interference. The main focus is on incoherent OCDMA systems using multiwavelength 2D-WH/TS codes generated using FBG based encoders and decoders. The MAI suppression capabilities based on its ability to eliminate selective wavelength pulse processing have been shown. A novel transmitter architecture that achieves up to 3dB power saving was also presented. As a result of hardware savings, processing cost will be significantly reduced and power budget improvement resulted in improved performance.

  16. Orbitofrontal lesions eliminate signalling of biological significance in cue-responsive ventral striatal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooch, Nisha K; Stalnaker, Thomas A; Wied, Heather M; Bali-Chaudhary, Sheena; McDannald, Michael A; Liu, Tzu-Lan; Schoenbaum, Geoffrey

    2015-05-21

    The ventral striatum has long been proposed as an integrator of biologically significant associative information to drive actions. Although inputs from the amygdala and hippocampus have been much studied, the role of prominent inputs from orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) are less well understood. Here, we recorded single-unit activity from ventral striatum core in rats with sham or ipsilateral neurotoxic lesions of lateral OFC, as they performed an odour-guided spatial choice task. Consistent with prior reports, we found that spiking activity recorded in sham rats during cue sampling was related to both reward magnitude and reward identity, with higher firing rates observed for cues that predicted more reward. Lesioned rats also showed differential activity to the cues, but this activity was unbiased towards larger rewards. These data support a role for OFC in shaping activity in the ventral striatum to represent the biological significance of associative information in the environment.

  17. Statistical significance estimation of a signal within the GooFit framework on GPUs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristella Leonardo

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In order to test the computing capabilities of GPUs with respect to traditional CPU cores a high-statistics toy Monte Carlo technique has been implemented both in ROOT/RooFit and GooFit frameworks with the purpose to estimate the statistical significance of the structure observed by CMS close to the kinematical boundary of the J/ψϕ invariant mass in the three-body decay B+ → J/ψϕK+. GooFit is a data analysis open tool under development that interfaces ROOT/RooFit to CUDA platform on nVidia GPU. The optimized GooFit application running on GPUs hosted by servers in the Bari Tier2 provides striking speed-up performances with respect to the RooFit application parallelised on multiple CPUs by means of PROOF-Lite tool. The considerable resulting speed-up, evident when comparing concurrent GooFit processes allowed by CUDA Multi Process Service and a RooFit/PROOF-Lite process with multiple CPU workers, is presented and discussed in detail. By means of GooFit it has also been possible to explore the behaviour of a likelihood ratio test statistic in different situations in which the Wilks Theorem may or may not apply because its regularity conditions are not satisfied.

  18. Significance of Interleukin-6 Signaling in the Resistance of Pharyngeal Cancer to Irradiation and the Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Inhibitor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, C.-C.; Chen, W.-C.; Lu, C.-H.; Wang, W.-H.; Lin, P.-Y.; Lee, K.-D.; Chen, M.-F.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: Tumor eradication by chemoradiotherapy for pharyngeal cancer has not been particularly successful. Targeting epithelial growth factor receptor (EGFR) could be a potential treatment strategy providing additional benefits, but only a subset of these tumors gives a clinically significant response to EGFR inhibitors. The aim has been to identify the role of interleukin-6 (IL-6) signaling and its predictive power in the treatment response of pharyngeal cancer. Methods and Materials: Human pharyngeal cancer cell lines, including the hypopharyngeal cancer cell line FaDu and its derived cell line FaDu-C225-R, were selected. Changes in tumor growth, response to treatment, and responsible signaling pathway were investigated in vitro. Furthermore, 95 pharyngeal cancer tissue specimens were analyzed by immunohistochemical staining, and correlations were made between levels of IL-6, IL-6 receptor (IL-6R), p-AKT, and p-STAT3 expression and the clinical outcome of patients. Results: In vitro, either extrinsic IL-6 stimulation of cancer cells or intrinsically activated IL-6 signaling detected in FADu-C225-R cells results in resistance to irradiation and EGFR inhibitor. Blocking IL-6 signaling attenuated aggressive tumor behavior and sensitized the cells to treatments. The responsible mechanisms included decreased p-STAT3, less nuclear translocation of EGFR, and subsequently attenuated epithelial-mesenchymal transition. Regarding clinical data, staining of p-STAT3 and IL-6 was significantly linked with lower response rates to treatments and shorter survival in pharyngeal cancer patients. Conclusions: IL-6 and p-STAT3 may be significant predictors of pharyngeal carcinoma, and regulating IL-6 signaling can be considered a promising therapeutic approach.

  19. Improved stochastic resonance algorithm for enhancement of signal-to-noise ratio of high-performance liquid chromatographic signal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xie Shaofei; Xiang Bingren; Deng Haishan; Xiang Suyun; Lu Jun

    2007-01-01

    Based on the theory of stochastic resonance, an improved stochastic resonance algorithm with a new criterion for optimizing system parameters to enhance signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of HPLC/UV chromatographic signal for trace analysis was presented in this study. Compared with the conventional criterion in stochastic resonance, the proposed one can ensure satisfactory SNR as well as good peak shape of chromatographic peak in output signal. Application of the criterion to experimental weak signals of HPLC/UV was investigated and the results showed an excellent quantitative relationship between different concentrations and responses

  20. Hepatocellular carcinoma: clinical significance of signal heterogeneity in the hepatobiliary phase of gadoxetic acid-enhanced MR imaging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fujita, Nobuhiro; Nishie, Akihiro; Asayama, Yoshiki; Ushijima, Yasuhiro; Moirta, Koichiro; Honda, Hiroshi [Kyushu University, Department of Clinical Radiology, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Fukuoka (Japan); Kubo, Yuichiro; Aishima, Shinichi [Kyushu University, Department of Anatomic Pathology, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Fukuoka (Japan); Takayama, Yukihisa [Kyushu University, Department of Molecular Imaging and Diagnosis, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Fukuoka (Japan); Shirabe, Ken [Kyushu University, Department of Surgery and Science, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Fukuoka (Japan)

    2015-01-15

    To clarify the relationship between the biological behaviour of hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs) and their signal intensity in the hepatobiliary phase of gadoxetic acid-enhanced MR imaging with a special focus on the signal heterogeneity. A total of 68 patients with 70 pathologically proven HCCs were enrolled. On the basis of the signal intensity in the hepatobiliary phase, the lesions were classified into three groups: group 1, homogeneous hypointensity (n = 44); group 2, heterogeneous hyperintensity (n = 20); and group 3, homogeneous hyperintensity (n = 6). The clinicopathological findings were compared among the three groups. The tumour size and the serum level of protein induced by vitamin K absence or antagonist-II (PIVKA-II) were significantly higher in group 2 compared to group 1 (p = 0.0155, p = 0.0215, respectively) and compared to group 3 (p = 0.0330, p = 0.0220, respectively). The organic anion transporting polypeptide 8 (OATP8) expression in group 2 and group 3 was significantly higher than in group 1 (p < 0.0001, p < 0.0001, respectively). Group 2 showed a significantly lower disease-free survival rate compared to group 1 (p = 0.0125), and group 2 was an independent prognostic factor for disease-free survival (p = 0.0308). HCCs in the hepatobiliary phase that are heterogeneously hyperintense on gadoxetic acid-enhanced MR imaging have more malignant potential than other types of HCCs. (orig.)

  1. The Denver region traffic signal system improvement program : planning for management and operations

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-04-01

    The Denver Regional Council of Governments (DRCOG) works with over 30 local jurisdictions on the Traffic Signal System Improvement Program (TSSIP), a combination of management and operations strategies designed to time and coordinate traffic signals ...

  2. An efficient optimization method to improve the measuring accuracy of oxygen saturation by using triangular wave optical signal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Gang; Yu, Yue; Zhang, Cui; Lin, Ling

    2017-09-01

    The oxygen saturation is one of the important parameters to evaluate human health. This paper presents an efficient optimization method that can improve the accuracy of oxygen saturation measurement, which employs an optical frequency division triangular wave signal as the excitation signal to obtain dynamic spectrum and calculate oxygen saturation. In comparison to the traditional method measured RMSE (root mean square error) of SpO2 which is 0.1705, this proposed method significantly reduced the measured RMSE which is 0.0965. It is notable that the accuracy of oxygen saturation measurement has been improved significantly. The method can simplify the circuit and bring down the demand of elements. Furthermore, it has a great reference value on improving the signal to noise ratio of other physiological signals.

  3. Improving Walkability Through Control Strategies at Signalized Intersections

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-01-01

    As cities and communities nationwide seek to develop Complete Streets that foster livability and accommodate all modes, signal timing control strategies that include pedestrians in the operational decision process are gaining importance. This researc...

  4. Improving traffic signal management and operations : a basic service model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-12-01

    This report provides a guide for achieving a basic service model for traffic signal management and : operations. The basic service model is based on simply stated and defensible operational objectives : that consider the staffing level, expertise and...

  5. Improving the Signal for U.S. Navy Officer Productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-12-01

    American Economic Review, 93(1), 216–240. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/3132169 Mankiw , G., Romer, D., & Weil, D. (1992). A contribution...individual perfonnance appraisal system to optimally signal officer productivity. This paper utilizes the economics literature on individual perfonnance...signal officer productivity. This paper utilizes the economics literature on individual performance appraisals and promotion systems as the lens

  6. Improved signal processing approaches in an offline simulation of a hybrid brain–computer interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brunner, Clemens; Allison, Brendan Z.; Krusienski, Dean J.; Kaiser, Vera; Müller-Putz, Gernot R.; Pfurtscheller, Gert; Neuper, Christa

    2012-01-01

    In a conventional brain–computer interface (BCI) system, users perform mental tasks that yield specific patterns of brain activity. A pattern recognition system determines which brain activity pattern a user is producing and thereby infers the user’s mental task, allowing users to send messages or commands through brain activity alone. Unfortunately, despite extensive research to improve classification accuracy, BCIs almost always exhibit errors, which are sometimes so severe that effective communication is impossible. We recently introduced a new idea to improve accuracy, especially for users with poor performance. In an offline simulation of a “hybrid” BCI, subjects performed two mental tasks independently and then simultaneously. This hybrid BCI could use two different types of brain signals common in BCIs – event-related desynchronization (ERD) and steady-state evoked potentials (SSEPs). This study suggested that such a hybrid BCI is feasible. Here, we re-analyzed the data from our initial study. We explored eight different signal processing methods that aimed to improve classification and further assess both the causes and the extent of the benefits of the hybrid condition. Most analyses showed that the improved methods described here yielded a statistically significant improvement over our initial study. Some of these improvements could be relevant to conventional BCIs as well. Moreover, the number of illiterates could be reduced with the hybrid condition. Results are also discussed in terms of dual task interference and relevance to protocol design in hybrid BCIs. PMID:20153371

  7. Signal improvement in multiphoton microscopy by reflection with simple mirrors near the sample

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rehberg, Markus; Krombach, Fritz; Pohl, Ulrich; Dietzel, Steffen

    2010-03-01

    In conventional fluorescence or confocal microscopy, emitted light is generated not only in the focal plane but also above and below. The situation is different in multiphoton-induced fluorescence and multiphoton-induced higher harmonic generation. Here, restriction of signal generation to a single focal point permits that all emitted photons can contribute to image formation if collected, regardless of their path through the specimen. Often, the intensity of the emitted light is rather low in biological specimens. We present a method to significantly increase the fraction of photons collected by an epi (backward) detector by placing a simple mirror, an aluminum-coated coverslip, directly under the sample. Samples investigated include fluorescent test slides, collagen gels, and thin-layered, intact mouse skeletal muscles. Quantitative analysis revealed an intensity increase of second- and third-harmonic generated signal in skeletal muscle of nine- and sevenfold respectively, and of fluorescent signal in test slides of up to twofold. Our approach thus allows significant signal improvement also for situations were a forward detection is impossible, e.g., due to the anatomy of animals in intravital microscopy.

  8. Neuro-Linguistic Programming: Improving Rapport between Track/Cross Country Coaches and Significant Others

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helm, David Jay

    2017-01-01

    This study examines the background information and the components of N.L.P., being eye movements, use of predicates, and posturing, as they apply to improving rapport and empathy between track/cross country coaches and their significant others in the arena of competition to help alleviate the inherent stressors.

  9. Rehearsal significantly improves immediate and delayed recall on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hessen, Erik

    2011-10-01

    A repeated observation during memory assessment with the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT) is that patients who spontaneously employ a memory rehearsal strategy by repeating the word list more than once achieve better scores than patients who only repeat the word list once. This observation led to concern about the ability of the standard test procedure of RAVLT and similar tests in eliciting the best possible recall scores. The purpose of the present study was to test the hypothesis that a rehearsal recall strategy of repeating the word list more than once would result in improved scores of recall on the RAVLT. We report on differences in outcome after standard administration and after experimental administration on Immediate and Delayed Recall measures from the RAVLT of 50 patients. The experimental administration resulted in significantly improved scores for all the variables employed. Additionally, it was found that patients who failed effort screening showed significantly poorer improvement on Delayed Recall compared with those who passed the effort screening. The general clear improvement both in raw scores and T-scores demonstrates that recall performance can be significantly influenced by the strategy of the patient or by small variations in instructions by the examiner.

  10. Improved Techniques for Automatic Chord Recognition from Music Audio Signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Taemin

    2014-01-01

    This thesis is concerned with the development of techniques that facilitate the effective implementation of capable automatic chord transcription from music audio signals. Since chord transcriptions can capture many important aspects of music, they are useful for a wide variety of music applications and also useful for people who learn and perform…

  11. Costello Syndrome with Severe Nodulocystic Acne: Unexpected Significant Improvement of Acanthosis Nigricans after Oral Isotretinoin Treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leelawadee Sriboonnark

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available We report the case of 17-year-old female diagnosed with Costello syndrome. Genetic testing provided a proof with G12S mutation in the HRAS gene since 3 years of age with a presentation of severe nodulocystic acne on her face. After 2 months of oral isotretinoin treatment, improvement in her acne was observed. Interestingly, an unexpected significant improvement of acanthosis nigricans on her neck and dorsum of her hands was found as well. We present this case as a successful treatment option by using oral isotretinoin for the treatment of acanthosis nigricans in Costello syndrome patients.

  12. Determination of significance in Ecological Impact Assessment: Past change, current practice and future improvements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Briggs, Sam; Hudson, Malcolm D., E-mail: mdh@soton.ac.uk

    2013-01-15

    Ecological Impact Assessment (EcIA) is an important tool for conservation and achieving sustainable development. 'Significant' impacts are those which disturb or alter the environment to a measurable degree. Significance is a crucial part of EcIA, our understanding of the concept in practice is vital if it is to be effective as a tool. This study employed three methods to assess how the determination of significance has changed through time, what current practice is, and what would lead to future improvements. Three data streams were collected: interviews with expert stakeholders, a review of 30 Environmental Statements and a broad-scale survey of the United Kingdom Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (IEEM) members. The approach taken in the determination of significance has become more standardised and subjectivity has become constrained through a transparent framework. This has largely been driven by a set of guidelines produced by IEEM in 2006. The significance of impacts is now more clearly justified and the accuracy with which it is determined has improved. However, there are limitations to accuracy and effectiveness of the determination of significance. These are the quality of baseline survey data, our scientific understanding of ecological processes and the lack of monitoring and feedback of results. These in turn are restricted by the limited resources available in consultancies. The most notable recommendations for future practice are the implementation of monitoring and the publication of feedback, the creation of a central database for baseline survey data and the streamlining of guidance. - Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The assessment of significance has changed markedly through time. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The IEEM guidelines have driven a standardisation of practice. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Currently limited by quality of baseline data and scientific understanding. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Monitoring

  13. Histone deacetylase inhibitor significantly improved the cloning efficiency of porcine somatic cell nuclear transfer embryos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yongye; Tang, Xiaochun; Xie, Wanhua; Zhou, Yan; Li, Dong; Yao, Chaogang; Zhou, Yang; Zhu, Jianguo; Lai, Liangxue; Ouyang, Hongsheng; Pang, Daxin

    2011-12-01

    Valproic acid (VPA), a histone deacetylase inbibitor, has been shown to generate inducible pluripotent stem (iPS) cells from mouse and human fibroblasts with a significant higher efficiency. Because successful cloning by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) undergoes a full reprogramming process in which the epigenetic state of a differentiated donor nuclear is converted into an embryonic totipotent state, we speculated that VPA would be useful in promoting cloning efficiency. Therefore, in the present study, we examined whether VPA can promote the developmental competence of SCNT embryos by improving the reprogramming state of donor nucleus. Here we report that 1 mM VPA for 14 to 16 h following activation significantly increased the rate of blastocyst formation of porcine SCNT embryos constructed from Landrace fetal fibroblast cells compared to the control (31.8 vs. 11.4%). However, we found that the acetylation level of Histone H3 lysine 14 and Histone H4 lysine 5 and expression level of Oct4, Sox2, and Klf4 was not significantly changed between VPA-treated and -untreated groups at the blastocyst stage. The SCNT embryos were transferred to 38 surrogates, and the cloning efficiency in the treated group was significantly improved compared with the control group. Taken together, we have demonstrated that VPA can improve both in vitro and in vivo development competence of porcine SCNT embryos.

  14. Communication: Proper treatment of classically forbidden electronic transitions significantly improves detailed balance in surface hopping

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sifain, Andrew E. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California 90089-0485 (United States); Wang, Linjun [Department of Chemistry, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310027 (China); Prezhdo, Oleg V. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California 90089-0485 (United States); Department of Chemistry, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California 90089-1062 (United States)

    2016-06-07

    Surface hopping is the most popular method for nonadiabatic molecular dynamics. Many have reported that it does not rigorously attain detailed balance at thermal equilibrium, but does so approximately. We show that convergence to the Boltzmann populations is significantly improved when the nuclear velocity is reversed after a classically forbidden hop. The proposed prescription significantly reduces the total number of classically forbidden hops encountered along a trajectory, suggesting that some randomization in nuclear velocity is needed when classically forbidden hops constitute a large fraction of attempted hops. Our results are verified computationally using two- and three-level quantum subsystems, coupled to a classical bath undergoing Langevin dynamics.

  15. Improving Small Signal Stability through Operating Point Adjustment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huang, Zhenyu; Zhou, Ning; Tuffner, Francis K.; Chen, Yousu; Trudnowski, Daniel J.; Mittelstadt, William; Hauer, John F.; Dagle, Jeffery E.

    2010-09-30

    ModeMeter techniques for real-time small signal stability monitoring continue to mature, and more and more phasor measurements are available in power systems. It has come to the stage to bring modal information into real-time power system operation. This paper proposes to establish a procedure for Modal Analysis for Grid Operations (MANGO). Complementary to PSS’s and other traditional modulation-based control, MANGO aims to provide suggestions such as increasing generation or decreasing load for operators to mitigate low-frequency oscillations. Different from modulation-based control, the MANGO procedure proactively maintains adequate damping for all time, instead of reacting to disturbances when they occur. Effect of operating points on small signal stability is presented in this paper. Implementation with existing operating procedures is discussed. Several approaches for modal sensitivity estimation are investigated to associate modal damping and operating parameters. The effectiveness of the MANGO procedure is confirmed through simulation studies of several test systems.

  16. Wavelet based methods for improved wind profiler signal processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Lehmann

    2001-08-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we apply wavelet thresholding for removing automatically ground and intermittent clutter (airplane echoes from wind profiler radar data. Using the concept of discrete multi-resolution analysis and non-parametric estimation theory, we develop wavelet domain thresholding rules, which allow us to identify the coefficients relevant for clutter and to suppress them in order to obtain filtered reconstructions.Key words. Meteorology and atmospheric dynamics (instruments and techniques – Radio science (remote sensing; signal processing

  17. An Improved Algebraic Method for Transit Signal Priority Scheme and Its Impact on Traffic Emission

    OpenAIRE

    Ji, Yanjie; Hu, Bo; Han, Jing; Tang, Dounan

    2014-01-01

    Transit signal priority has a positive effect on improving traffic congestion and reducing transit delay and also has an influence on traffic emission. In this paper, an optimal transit signal priority scheme based on an improved algebraic method was developed and its impact on vehicle emission was evaluated as well. The improved algebraic method was proposed on the basis of classical algebraic method and has improvements in three aspects. First, the calculation rules of split loss are more r...

  18. The challenges of ESRD care in developing economies: sub-Saharan African opportunities for significant improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bamgboye, Ebun Ladipo

    Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in sub-Saharan Africa. This, along with other noncommunicable diseases like hypertension, diabetes, and heart diseases, poses a double burden on a region that is still struggling to cope with the scourge of communicable diseases like malaria, tuberculosis, HIV, and more recently Ebola. Causes of CKD in the region are predominantly glomerulonephritis and hypertension, although type 2 diabetes is also becoming a significant cause as is the retroviral disease. Patients are generally younger than in the developed world, and there is a significant male preponderance. Most patients are managed by hemodialysis, with peritoneal dialysis and kidney transplantation being available in only few countries in the region. Government funding and support for dialysis is often unavailable, and when available, often with restrictions. There is a dearth of trained manpower to treat the disease, and many countries have a limited number of units, which are often ill-equipped to deal adequately with the number of patients who require end-stage renal disease (ESRD) care in the region. Although there has been a significant improvement when compared with the situation, even as recently as 10 years ago, there is also the potential for further improvement, which would significantly improve the outcomes in patients with ESRD in the region. The information in this review was obtained from a combination of renal registry reports (published and unpublished), published articles, responses to a questionnaire sent to nephrologists prior to the World Congress of Nephrology (WCN) in Cape Town, and from nephrologists attending the WCN in Cape Town (March 13 - 17, 2015).

  19. Design principles of nuclear receptor signaling: how complex networking improves signal transduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolodkin, Alexey N; Bruggeman, Frank J; Plant, Nick; Moné, Martijn J; Bakker, Barbara M; Campbell, Moray J; van Leeuwen, Johannes P T M; Carlberg, Carsten; Snoep, Jacky L; Westerhoff, Hans V

    2010-01-01

    The topology of nuclear receptor (NR) signaling is captured in a systems biological graphical notation. This enables us to identify a number of ‘design' aspects of the topology of these networks that might appear unnecessarily complex or even functionally paradoxical. In realistic kinetic models of increasing complexity, calculations show how these features correspond to potentially important design principles, e.g.: (i) cytosolic ‘nuclear' receptor may shuttle signal molecules to the nucleus, (ii) the active export of NRs may ensure that there is sufficient receptor protein to capture ligand at the cytoplasmic membrane, (iii) a three conveyor belts design dissipating GTP-free energy, greatly aids response, (iv) the active export of importins may prevent sequestration of NRs by importins in the nucleus and (v) the unspecific nature of the nuclear pore may ensure signal-flux robustness. In addition, the models developed are suitable for implementation in specific cases of NR-mediated signaling, to predict individual receptor functions and differential sensitivity toward physiological and pharmacological ligands. PMID:21179018

  20. Survival prediction algorithms miss significant opportunities for improvement if used for case selection in trauma quality improvement programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heim, Catherine; Cole, Elaine; West, Anita; Tai, Nigel; Brohi, Karim

    2016-09-01

    Quality improvement (QI) programs have shown to reduce preventable mortality in trauma care. Detailed review of all trauma deaths is a time and resource consuming process and calculated probability of survival (Ps) has been proposed as audit filter. Review is limited on deaths that were 'expected to survive'. However no Ps-based algorithm has been validated and no study has examined elements of preventability associated with deaths classified as 'expected'. The objective of this study was to examine whether trauma performance review can be streamlined using existing mortality prediction tools without missing important areas for improvement. We conducted a retrospective study of all trauma deaths reviewed by our trauma QI program. Deaths were classified into non-preventable, possibly preventable, probably preventable or preventable. Opportunities for improvement (OPIs) involve failure in the process of care and were classified into clinical and system deviations from standards of care. TRISS and PS were used for calculation of probability of survival. Peer-review charts were reviewed by a single investigator. Over 8 years, 626 patients were included. One third showed elements of preventability and 4% were preventable. Preventability occurred across the entire range of the calculated Ps band. Limiting review to unexpected deaths would have missed over 50% of all preventability issues and a third of preventable deaths. 37% of patients showed opportunities for improvement (OPIs). Neither TRISS nor PS allowed for reliable identification of OPIs and limiting peer-review to patients with unexpected deaths would have missed close to 60% of all issues in care. TRISS and PS fail to identify a significant proportion of avoidable deaths and miss important opportunities for process and system improvement. Based on this, all trauma deaths should be subjected to expert panel review in order to aim at a maximal output of performance improvement programs. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier

  1. Improvement of detection limits of PIXE by substrate signal reduction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beaulieu, S.; Nejedly, Z.; Campbell, J.L.; Edwards, G.C.; Dias, G.M.

    2002-01-01

    Limits of detection (LODs) for aerosol samples collected using PIXE International cascade impactors, were improved approximately 50% after reducing the cross-sectional area of the analytical beam based on results obtained from microscope photographs of aerosol deposits. Improvements in LODs were most noticeable for selected elements collected on the smaller stages of the impactor (stages 1-3)

  2. Understanding Resolvin Signaling Pathways to Improve Oral Health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura De Oleo

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The discovery of resolvins has been a major breakthrough for understanding the processes involved in resolution of inflammation. Resolvins belong to a family of novel lipid mediators that possess dual anti-inflammatory and pro-resolution actions. Specifically, they protect healthy tissue during immune-inflammatory responses to infection or injury, thereby aiding inflammation resolution and promoting tissue healing. One of the major concerns in modern medicine is the management and treatment of oral diseases, as they are related to systemic outcomes impacting the quality of life of many patients. This review summarizes known signaling pathways utilized by resolvins to regulate inflammatory responses associated with the oral cavity.

  3. PXD101 significantly improves nuclear reprogramming and the in vitro developmental competence of porcine SCNT embryos

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jin, Jun-Xue; Kang, Jin-Dan; Li, Suo; Jin, Long; Zhu, Hai-Ying; Guo, Qing; Gao, Qing-Shan; Yan, Chang-Guo; Yin, Xi-Jun, E-mail: yinxj33@msn.com

    2015-01-02

    Highlights: • First explored that the effects of PXD101 on the development of SCNT embryos in vitro. • 0.5 μM PXD101 treated for 24 h improved the development of porcine SCNT embryos. • Level of AcH3K9 was significantly higher than control group at early stages. - Abstract: In this study, we investigated the effects of the histone deacetylase inhibitor PXD101 (belinostat) on the preimplantation development of porcine somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) embryos and their expression of the epigenetic markers histone H3 acetylated at lysine 9 (AcH3K9). We compared the in vitro developmental competence of SCNT embryos treated with various concentrations of PXD101 for 24 h. Treatment with 0.5 μM PXD101 significantly increased the proportion of SCNT embryos that reached the blastocyst stage, in comparison to the control group (23.3% vs. 11.5%, P < 0.05). We tested the in vitro developmental competence of SCNT embryos treated with 0.5 μM PXD101 for various amounts of times following activation. Treatment for 24 h significantly improved the development of porcine SCNT embryos, with a significantly higher proportion of embryos reaching the blastocyst stage in comparison to the control group (25.7% vs. 10.6%, P < 0.05). PXD101-treated SCNT embryos were transferred into two surrogate sows, one of whom became pregnant and four fetuses developed. PXD101 treatment significantly increased the fluorescence intensity of immunostaining for AcH3K9 in embryos at the pseudo-pronuclear and 2-cell stages. At these stages, the fluorescence intensities of immunostaining for AcH3K9 were significantly higher in PXD101-treated embryos than in control untreated embryos. In conclusion, this study demonstrates that PXD101 can significantly improve the in vitro and in vivo developmental competence of porcine SCNT embryos and can enhance their nuclear reprogramming.

  4. Does human body odor represent a significant and rewarding social signal to individuals high in social openness?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katrin T Lübke

    Full Text Available Across a wide variety of domains, experts differ from novices in their response to stimuli linked to their respective field of expertise. It is currently unknown whether similar patterns can be observed with regard to social expertise. The current study therefore focuses on social openness, a central social skill necessary to initiate social contact. Human body odors were used as social cues, as they inherently signal the presence of another human being. Using functional MRI, hemodynamic brain responses to body odors of women reporting a high (n = 14 or a low (n = 12 level of social openness were compared. Greater activation within the inferior frontal gyrus and the caudate nucleus was observed in high socially open individuals compared to individuals low in social openness. With the inferior frontal gyrus being a crucial part of the human mirror neuron system, and the caudate nucleus being implicated in social reward, it is discussed whether human body odor might constitute more of a significant and rewarding social signal to individuals high in social openness compared to individuals low in social openness process.

  5. Does human body odor represent a significant and rewarding social signal to individuals high in social openness?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lübke, Katrin T; Croy, Ilona; Hoenen, Matthias; Gerber, Johannes; Pause, Bettina M; Hummel, Thomas

    2014-01-01

    Across a wide variety of domains, experts differ from novices in their response to stimuli linked to their respective field of expertise. It is currently unknown whether similar patterns can be observed with regard to social expertise. The current study therefore focuses on social openness, a central social skill necessary to initiate social contact. Human body odors were used as social cues, as they inherently signal the presence of another human being. Using functional MRI, hemodynamic brain responses to body odors of women reporting a high (n = 14) or a low (n = 12) level of social openness were compared. Greater activation within the inferior frontal gyrus and the caudate nucleus was observed in high socially open individuals compared to individuals low in social openness. With the inferior frontal gyrus being a crucial part of the human mirror neuron system, and the caudate nucleus being implicated in social reward, it is discussed whether human body odor might constitute more of a significant and rewarding social signal to individuals high in social openness compared to individuals low in social openness process.

  6. Unified Health Gamification can significantly improve well-being in corporate environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahrestani, Arash; Van Gorp, Pieter; Le Blanc, Pascale; Greidanus, Fabrizio; de Groot, Kristel; Leermakers, Jelle

    2017-07-01

    There is a multitude of mHealth applications that aim to solve societal health problems by stimulating specific types of physical activities via gamification. However, physical health activities cover just one of the three World Health Organization (WHO) dimensions of health. This paper introduces the novel notion of Unified Health Gamification (UHG), which covers besides physical health also social and cognitive health and well-being. Instead of rewarding activities in the three WHO dimensions using different mHealth competitions, UHG combines the scores for such activities on unified leaderboards and lets people interact in social circles beyond personal interests. This approach is promising in corporate environments since UHG can connect the employees with intrinsic motivation for physical health with those who have quite different interests. In order to evaluate this approach, we realized an app prototype and we evaluated it in two corporate pilot studies. In total, eighteen pilot users participated voluntarily for six weeks. Half of the participants were recruited from an occupational health setting and the other half from a treatment setting. Our results suggest that the UHG principles are worth more investigation: various positive health effects were found based on a validated survey. The mean mental health improved significantly at one pilot location and at the level of individual pilot participants, multiple other effects were found to be significant: among others, significant mental health improvements were found for 28% of the participants. Most participants intended to use the app beyond the pilot, especially if it would be further developed.

  7. Thermosensitive Hydrogel Mask Significantly Improves Skin Moisture and Skin Tone; Bilateral Clinical Trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Quattrone

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Objective: A temperature-sensitive state-changing hydrogel mask was used in this study. Once it comes into contact with the skin and reaches the body temperature, it uniformly and quickly releases the active compounds, which possess moisturizing, anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and regenerative properties. Methods: An open label clinical trial was conducted to evaluate the effects of the test product on skin hydration, skin tone and skin ageing. Subjects applied the product to one side of their face and underwent Corneometer® and Chromameter measurements, Visual assessment of facial skin ageing and facial photography. All assessments and Self-Perception Questionnaires (SPQ were performed at baseline, after the first application of the test product and after four applications. Results: After a single treatment we observed an increase in skin moisturisation, an improvement of skin tone/luminosity and a reduction in signs of ageing, all statistically significant. After four applications a further improvement in all measured parameters was recorded. These results were confirmed by the subjects’ own perceptions, as reported in the SPQ both after one and four applications. Conclusion: The hydrogel mask tested in this study is very effective in improving skin hydration, skin radiance and luminosity, in encouraging an even skin tone and in reducing skin pigmentation.

  8. E2F5 status significantly improves malignancy diagnosis of epithelial ovarian cancer

    KAUST Repository

    Kothandaraman, Narasimhan

    2010-02-24

    Background: Ovarian epithelial cancer (OEC) usually presents in the later stages of the disease. Factors, especially those associated with cell-cycle genes, affecting the genesis and tumour progression for ovarian cancer are largely unknown. We hypothesized that over-expressed transcription factors (TFs), as well as those that are driving the expression of the OEC over-expressed genes, could be the key for OEC genesis and potentially useful tissue and serum markers for malignancy associated with OEC.Methods: Using a combination of computational (selection of candidate TF markers and malignancy prediction) and experimental approaches (tissue microarray and western blotting on patient samples) we identified and evaluated E2F5 transcription factor involved in cell proliferation, as a promising candidate regulatory target in early stage disease. Our hypothesis was supported by our tissue array experiments that showed E2F5 expression only in OEC samples but not in normal and benign tissues, and by significantly positively biased expression in serum samples done using western blotting studies.Results: Analysis of clinical cases shows that of the E2F5 status is characteristic for a different population group than one covered by CA125, a conventional OEC biomarker. E2F5 used in different combinations with CA125 for distinguishing malignant cyst from benign cyst shows that the presence of CA125 or E2F5 increases sensitivity of OEC detection to 97.9% (an increase from 87.5% if only CA125 is used) and, more importantly, the presence of both CA125 and E2F5 increases specificity of OEC to 72.5% (an increase from 55% if only CA125 is used). This significantly improved accuracy suggests possibility of an improved diagnostics of OEC. Furthermore, detection of malignancy status in 86 cases (38 benign, 48 early and late OEC) shows that the use of E2F5 status in combination with other clinical characteristics allows for an improved detection of malignant cases with sensitivity

  9. Significance of MPEG-7 textural features for improved mass detection in mammography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eltonsy, Nevine H; Tourassi, Georgia D; Fadeev, Aleksey; Elmaghraby, Adel S

    2006-01-01

    The purpose of the study is to investigate the significance of MPEG-7 textural features for improving the detection of masses in screening mammograms. The detection scheme was originally based on morphological directional neighborhood features extracted from mammographic regions of interest (ROIs). Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC) was performed to evaluate the performance of each set of features independently and merged into a back-propagation artificial neural network (BPANN) using the leave-one-out sampling scheme (LOOSS). The study was based on a database of 668 mammographic ROIs (340 depicting cancer regions and 328 depicting normal parenchyma). Overall, the ROC area index of the BPANN using the directional morphological features was Az=0.85+/-0.01. The MPEG-7 edge histogram descriptor-based BPNN showed an ROC area index of Az=0.71+/-0.01 while homogeneous textural descriptors using 30 and 120 channels helped the BPNN achieve similar ROC area indexes of Az=0.882+/-0.02 and Az=0.877+/-0.01 respectively. After merging the MPEG-7 homogeneous textural features with the directional neighborhood features the performance of the BPANN increased providing an ROC area index of Az=0.91+/-0.01. MPEG-7 homogeneous textural descriptor significantly improved the morphology-based detection scheme.

  10. Carfilzomib significantly improves the progression-free survival of high-risk patients in multiple myeloma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avet-Loiseau, Hervé; Fonseca, Rafael; Siegel, David; Dimopoulos, Meletios A; Špička, Ivan; Masszi, Tamás; Hájek, Roman; Rosiñol, Laura; Goranova-Marinova, Vesselina; Mihaylov, Georgi; Maisnar, Vladimír; Mateos, Maria-Victoria; Wang, Michael; Niesvizky, Ruben; Oriol, Albert; Jakubowiak, Andrzej; Minarik, Jiri; Palumbo, Antonio; Bensinger, William; Kukreti, Vishal; Ben-Yehuda, Dina; Stewart, A Keith; Obreja, Mihaela; Moreau, Philippe

    2016-09-01

    The presence of certain high-risk cytogenetic abnormalities, such as translocations (4;14) and (14;16) and deletion (17p), are known to have a negative impact on survival in multiple myeloma (MM). The phase 3 study ASPIRE (N = 792) demonstrated that progression-free survival (PFS) was significantly improved with carfilzomib, lenalidomide, and dexamethasone (KRd), compared with lenalidomide and dexamethasone (Rd) in relapsed MM. This preplanned subgroup analysis of ASPIRE was conducted to evaluate KRd vs Rd by baseline cytogenetics according to fluorescence in situ hybridization. Of 417 patients with known cytogenetic risk status, 100 patients (24%) were categorized with high-risk cytogenetics (KRd, n = 48; Rd, n = 52) and 317 (76%) were categorized with standard-risk cytogenetics (KRd, n = 147; Rd, n = 170). For patients with high-risk cytogenetics, treatment with KRd resulted in a median PFS of 23.1 months, a 9-month improvement relative to treatment with Rd. For patients with standard-risk cytogenetics, treatment with KRd led to a 10-month improvement in median PFS vs Rd. The overall response rates for KRd vs Rd were 79.2% vs 59.6% (high-risk cytogenetics) and 91.2% vs 73.5% (standard-risk cytogenetics); approximately fivefold as many patients with high- or standard-risk cytogenetics achieved a complete response or better with KRd vs Rd (29.2% vs 5.8% and 38.1% vs 6.5%, respectively). KRd improved but did not abrogate the poor prognosis associated with high-risk cytogenetics. This regimen had a favorable benefit-risk profile in patients with relapsed MM, irrespective of cytogenetic risk status, and should be considered a standard of care in these patients. This trial was registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as #NCT01080391. © 2016 by The American Society of Hematology.

  11. Improving OCD time to solution using Signal Response Metrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Fang; Zhang, Xiaoxiao; Vaid, Alok; Pandev, Stilian; Sanko, Dimitry; Ramanathan, Vidya; Venkataraman, Kartik; Haupt, Ronny

    2016-03-01

    In recent technology nodes, advanced process and novel integration scheme have challenged the precision limits of conventional metrology; with critical dimensions (CD) of device reduce to sub-nanometer region. Optical metrology has proved its capability to precisely detect intricate details on the complex structures, however, conventional RCWA-based (rigorous coupled wave analysis) scatterometry has the limitations of long time-to-results and lack of flexibility to adapt to wide process variations. Signal Response Metrology (SRM) is a new metrology technique targeted to alleviate the consumption of engineering and computation resources by eliminating geometric/dispersion modeling and spectral simulation from the workflow. This is achieved by directly correlating the spectra acquired from a set of wafers with known process variations encoded. In SPIE 2015, we presented the results of SRM application in lithography metrology and control [1], accomplished the mission of setting up a new measurement recipe of focus/dose monitoring in hours. This work will demonstrate our recent field exploration of SRM implementation in 20nm technology and beyond, including focus metrology for scanner control; post etch geometric profile measurement, and actual device profile metrology.

  12. Significance of magnetic resonance imaging signal change in the pedicle in the management of pediatric lumbar spondylolysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakai, Toshinori; Sairyo, Koichi; Mima, Seiichi; Yasui, Natsuo

    2010-06-15

    Prospective study. To investigate the time course of signal changes in the adjacent pedicle in fresh pediatric lumbar spondylolysis. A recent study reported that high signal change (HSC) on T2-magnetic resonance image (MRI) in the pedicle adjacent to the pars interarticularis could be an indicator of early spondylolysis. In addition, the HSC-positive pars defects showed significant better bony healing than the HSC-negative pars defects. However, there has been no report on the time course and the duration of HSC. We prospectively investigated 10 boys and 5 girls with fresh lumbar spondylolysis showing HSC in the adjacent pedicle. Their mean age was 15.1 years, ranging from 10 to 17 years. Two patients had multilevel unilateral spondylolysis. Among 15 patients, HSC was found in 22 (12 unilateral and 5 bilateral) pedicles. At the first presentation, the diagnosis of spondylolysis was made based on the plain radiograph findings, multidetector computed tomograms (CTs), and MRI. Every month from the first presentation, follow-up MRIs were taken. When HSC disappeared, multidetector CT was taken to confirm bony healing of the pars defect. Bony healing of the pars was obtained in 21 out of 22 defects. The bony healing rate was 95.6%. In 19 pedicles of 12 patients, HSC gradually diminished by every month until it disappeared 3 months later, and radiologic osseous healing was confirmed by CT in all but 1 patient. In the 3 remaining pedicles of 3 patients, HSC took more than 4 months to disappear. In this study, HSC disappeared in most pedicles on the 3-month follow-up MRI. In patients who did not comply with treatment, HSC tended to last longer. These results led us to hypothesize that MRI at the third month during follow-up can indicate whether the conservative treatment is being successful or not.

  13. Bone Mass and Strength are Significantly Improved in Mice Overexpressing Human WNT16 in Osteocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alam, Imranul; Reilly, Austin M; Alkhouli, Mohammed; Gerard-O'Riley, Rita L; Kasipathi, Charishma; Oakes, Dana K; Wright, Weston B; Acton, Dena; McQueen, Amie K; Patel, Bhavmik; Lim, Kyung-Eun; Robling, Alexander G; Econs, Michael J

    2017-04-01

    Recently, we demonstrated that osteoblast-specific overexpression of human WNT16 increased both cortical and trabecular bone mass and structure in mice. To further identify the cell-specific role of Wnt16 in bone homeostasis, we created transgenic (TG) mice overexpressing human WNT16 in osteocytes using Dmp1 promoter (Dmp1-hWNT16 TG) on C57BL/6 (B6) background. We analyzed bone phenotypes and serum bone biomarkers, performed gene expression analysis and measured dynamic bone histomorphometry in Dmp1-hWNT16 TG and wild-type (WT) mice. Compared to WT mice, Dmp1-hWNT16 TG mice exhibited significantly higher whole-body, spine and femoral aBMD, BMC and trabecular (BV/TV, Tb.N, and Tb.Th) and cortical (bone area and thickness) parameters in both male and female at 12 weeks of age. Femur stiffness and ultimate force were also significantly improved in the Dmp1-hWNT16 TG female mice, compared to sex-matched WT littermates. In addition, female Dmp1-hWNT16 TG mice displayed significantly higher MS/BS, MAR and BFR/BS compared to the WT mice. Gene expression analysis demonstrated significantly higher mRNA level of Alp in both male and female Dmp1-hWNT16 TG mice and significantly higher levels of Osteocalcin, Opg and Rankl in the male Dmp1-hWNT16 TG mice in bone tissue compared to sex-matched WT mice. These results indicate that WNT16 plays a critical role for acquisition of both cortical and trabecular bone mass and strength. Strategies designed to use WNT16 as a target for therapeutic interventions will be valuable to treat osteoporosis and other low bone mass conditions.

  14. Radiotherapy is associated with significant improvement in local and regional control in Merkel cell carcinoma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kang, Susan H; Haydu, Lauren E; Goh, Robin Yeong Hong; Fogarty, Gerald B

    2012-01-01

    Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a rare tumour of skin. This study is a retrospective audit of patients with MCC from St Vincent’s and Mater Hospital, Sydney, Australia. The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of radiotherapy (RT) on the local and regional control of MCC lesions and survival of patients with MCC. The data bases in anatomical pathology, RT and surgery. We searched for patients having a diagnosis of MCC between 1996 and 2007. Patient, tumour and treatment characteristics were collected and analysed. Univariate survival analysis of categorical variables was conducted with the Kaplan-Meier method together with the Log-Rank test for statistical significance. Continuous variables were assessed using the Cox regression method. Multivariate analysis was performed for significant univariate results. Sixty seven patients were found. Sixty two who were stage I-III and were treated with radical intent were analysed. 68% were male. The median age was 74 years. Forty-two cases (68%) were stage I or II, and 20 cases (32%) were stage III. For the subset of 42 stage I and II patients, those that had RT to their primary site had a 2-year local recurrence free survival of 89% compared with 36% for patients not receiving RT (p<0.001). The cumulative 2-year regional recurrence free survival for patients having adjuvant regional RT was 84% compared with 43% for patients not receiving this treatment (p<0.001). Immune status at initial surgery was a significant predictor for OS and MCCSS. In a multivariate analysis combining macroscopic size (mm) and immune status at initial surgery, only immune status remained a significant predictor of overall survival (HR=2.096, 95% CI: 1.002-4.385, p=0.049). RT is associated with significant improvement in local and regional control in Merkel cell carcinoma. Immunosuppression is an important factor in overall survival

  15. Integration of biomimicry and nanotechnology for significantly improved detection of circulating tumor cells (CTCs).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myung, Ja Hye; Park, Sin-Jung; Wang, Andrew Z; Hong, Seungpyo

    2017-12-13

    Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) have received a great deal of scientific and clinical attention as a biomarker for diagnosis and prognosis of many types of cancer. Given their potential significance in clinics, a variety of detection methods, utilizing the recent advances in nanotechnology and microfluidics, have been introduced in an effort of achieving clinically significant detection of CTCs. However, effective detection and isolation of CTCs still remain a tremendous challenge due to their extreme rarity and phenotypic heterogeneity. Among many approaches that are currently under development, this review paper focuses on a unique, promising approach that takes advantages of naturally occurring processes achievable through application of nanotechnology to realize significant improvement in sensitivity and specificity of CTC capture. We provide an overview of successful outcome of this biomimetic CTC capture system in detection of tumor cells from in vitro, in vivo, and clinical pilot studies. We also emphasize the clinical impact of CTCs as biomarkers in cancer diagnosis and predictive prognosis, which provides a cost-effective, minimally invasive method that potentially replaces or supplements existing methods such as imaging technologies and solid tissue biopsy. In addition, their potential prognostic values as treatment guidelines and that ultimately help to realize personalized therapy are discussed. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  16. Improvement of the characterization of ultrasonic data by means of digital signal processing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bieth, M.; Romy, D.; Weigel, D.

    1985-01-01

    The digital signal processing method for averaging using minima developed by Framatome allows to improve signal-to-noise ratio up to 7 dB during ultrasonic testing of cast stainless steel structures (primary pipes of PWR power plants). Application of digital signal processing to industrial testing conditions requires the availability of a fast analog-digital converter capable of real time processings which has been developed by CGR [fr

  17. Mechanisms and significance of brain glucose signaling in energy balance, glucose homeostasis, and food-induced reward.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devarakonda, Kavya; Mobbs, Charles V

    2016-12-15

    The concept that hypothalamic glucose signaling plays an important role in regulating energy balance, e.g., as instantiated in the so-called "glucostat" hypothesis, is one of the oldest in the field of metabolism. However the mechanisms by which neurons in the hypothalamus sense glucose, and the function of glucose signaling in the brain, has been difficult to establish. Nevertheless recent studies probing mechanisms of glucose signaling have also strongly supported a role for glucose signaling in regulating energy balance, glucose homeostasis, and food-induced reward. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Significant Improvement of Organic Thin-Film Transistor Mobility Utilizing an Organic Heterojunction Buffer Layer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pan Feng; Qian Xian-Rui; Huang Li-Zhen; Wang Hai-Bo; Yan Dong-Hang

    2011-01-01

    High-mobility vanadyl phthalocyanine (VOPc)/5,5‴-bis(4-fluorophenyl)-2,2':5',2″:5″,2‴-quaterthiophene (F2-P4T) thin-film transistors are demonstrated by employing a copper hexadecafluorophthalocyanine (F 16 CuPc)/copper phthalocyanine (CuPc) heterojunction unit, which are fabricated at different substrate temperatures, as a buffer layer. The highest mobility of 4.08cm 2 /Vs is achieved using a F 16 CuPc/CuPc organic heterojunction buffer layer fabricated at high substrate temperature. Compared with the random small grain-like morphology of the room-temperature buffer layer, the high-temperature organic heterojunction presents a large-sized fiber-like film morphology, resulting in an enhanced conductivity. Thus the contact resistance of the transistor is significantly reduced and an obvious improvement in device mobility is obtained. (cross-disciplinary physics and related areas of science and technology)

  19. Significant improvement of optical traps by tuning standard water immersion objectives

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reihani, S Nader S; Mir, Shahid A; Richardson, Andrew C; Oddershede, Lene B

    2011-01-01

    Focused infrared lasers are widely used for micromanipulation and visualization of biological specimens. An inherent practical problem is that off-the-shelf commercial microscope objectives are designed for use with visible and not infrared wavelengths. Less aberration is introduced by water immersion objectives than by oil immersion ones, however, even water immersion objectives induce significant aberration. We present a simple method to reduce the spherical aberration induced by water immersion objectives, namely by tuning the correction collar of the objective to a value that is ∼ 10% lower than the physical thickness of the coverslip. This results in marked improvements in optical trapping strengths of up to 100% laterally and 600% axially from a standard microscope objective designed for use in the visible range. The results are generally valid for any water immersion objective with any numerical aperture

  20. Significant improvement in the electrical characteristics of Schottky barrier diodes on molecularly modified Gallium Nitride surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garg, Manjari; Naik, Tejas R.; Pathak, C. S.; Nagarajan, S.; Rao, V. Ramgopal; Singh, R.

    2018-04-01

    III-Nitride semiconductors face the issue of localized surface states, which causes fermi level pinning and large leakage current at the metal semiconductor interface, thereby degrading the device performance. In this work, we have demonstrated the use of a Self-Assembled Monolayer (SAM) of organic molecules to improve the electrical characteristics of Schottky barrier diodes (SBDs) on n-type Gallium Nitride (n-GaN) epitaxial films. The electrical characteristics of diodes were improved by adsorption of SAM of hydroxyl-phenyl metallated porphyrin organic molecules (Zn-TPPOH) onto the surface of n-GaN. SAM-semiconductor bonding via native oxide on the n-GaN surface was confirmed using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy measurements. Surface morphology and surface electronic properties were characterized using atomic force microscopy and Kelvin probe force microscopy. Current-voltage characteristics of different metal (Cu, Ni) SBDs on bare n-GaN were compared with those of Cu/Zn-TPPOH/n-GaN and Ni/Zn-TPPOH/n-GaN SBDs. It was found that due to the molecular monolayer, the surface potential of n-GaN was decreased by ˜350 mV. This caused an increase in the Schottky barrier height of Cu and Ni SBDs from 1.13 eV to 1.38 eV and 1.07 eV to 1.22 eV, respectively. In addition to this, the reverse bias leakage current was reduced by 3-4 orders of magnitude for both Cu and Ni SBDs. Such a significant improvement in the electrical performance of the diodes can be very useful for better device functioning.

  1. pEPito: a significantly improved non-viral episomal expression vector for mammalian cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ogris Manfred

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The episomal replication of the prototype vector pEPI-1 depends on a transcription unit starting from the constitutively expressed Cytomegalovirus immediate early promoter (CMV-IEP and directed into a 2000 bp long matrix attachment region sequence (MARS derived from the human β-interferon gene. The original pEPI-1 vector contains two mammalian transcription units and a total of 305 CpG islands, which are located predominantly within the vector elements necessary for bacterial propagation and known to be counterproductive for persistent long-term transgene expression. Results Here, we report the development of a novel vector pEPito, which is derived from the pEPI-1 plasmid replicon but has considerably improved efficacy both in vitro and in vivo. The pEPito vector is significantly reduced in size, contains only one transcription unit and 60% less CpG motives in comparison to pEPI-1. It exhibits major advantages compared to the original pEPI-1 plasmid, including higher transgene expression levels and increased colony-forming efficiencies in vitro, as well as more persistent transgene expression profiles in vivo. The performance of pEPito-based vectors was further improved by replacing the CMV-IEP with the human CMV enhancer/human elongation factor 1 alpha promoter (hCMV/EF1P element that is known to be less affected by epigenetic silencing events. Conclusions The novel vector pEPito can be considered suitable as an improved vector for biotechnological applications in vitro and for non-viral gene delivery in vivo.

  2. Electronic monitoring in combination with direct observation as a means to significantly improve hand hygiene compliance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyce, John M

    2017-05-01

    Monitoring hand hygiene compliance among health care personnel (HCP) is an essential element of hand hygiene promotion programs. Observation by trained auditors is considered the gold standard method for establishing hand hygiene compliance rates. Advantages of observational surveys include the unique ability to establish compliance with all of the World Health Organization "My 5 Moments for Hand Hygiene" initiative Moments and to provide just-in-time coaching. Disadvantages include the resources required for observational surveys, insufficient sample sizes, and nonstandardized methods of conducting observations. Electronic and camera-based systems can monitor hand hygiene performance on all work shifts without a Hawthorne effect and provide significantly more data regarding hand hygiene performance. Disadvantages include the cost of installation, variable accuracy in estimating compliance rates, issues related to acceptance by HCP, insufficient data regarding their cost-effectiveness and influence on health care-related infection rates, and the ability of most systems to monitor only surrogates for Moments 1, 4, and 5. Increasing evidence suggests that monitoring only Moments 1, 4, and 5 provides reasonable estimates of compliance with all 5 Moments. With continued improvement of electronic monitoring systems, combining electronic monitoring with observational methods may provide the best information as part of a multimodal strategy to improve and sustain hand hygiene compliance rates among HCP. Copyright © 2017 Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. An On-Chip RBC Deformability Checker Significantly Improves Velocity-Deformation Correlation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chia-Hung Dylan Tsai

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available An on-chip deformability checker is proposed to improve the velocity–deformation correlation for red blood cell (RBC evaluation. RBC deformability has been found related to human diseases, and can be evaluated based on RBC velocity through a microfluidic constriction as in conventional approaches. The correlation between transit velocity and amount of deformation provides statistical information of RBC deformability. However, such correlations are usually only moderate, or even weak, in practical evaluations due to limited range of RBC deformation. To solve this issue, we implemented three constrictions of different width in the proposed checker, so that three different deformation regions can be applied to RBCs. By considering cell responses from the three regions as a whole, we practically extend the range of cell deformation in the evaluation, and could resolve the issue about the limited range of RBC deformation. RBCs from five volunteer subjects were tested using the proposed checker. The results show that the correlation between cell deformation and transit velocity is significantly improved by the proposed deformability checker. The absolute values of the correlation coefficients are increased from an average of 0.54 to 0.92. The effects of cell size, shape and orientation to the evaluation are discussed according to the experimental results. The proposed checker is expected to be useful for RBC evaluation in medical practices.

  4. Fabrication of CoZn alloy nanowire arrays: Significant improvement in magnetic properties by annealing process

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koohbor, M.; Soltanian, S.; Najafi, M.; Servati, P.

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► Increasing the Zn concentration changes the structure of NWs from hcp to amorphous. ► Increasing the Zn concentration significantly reduces the Hc value of NWs. ► Magnetic properties of CoZn NWs can be significantly enhanced by appropriate annealing. ► The pH of electrolyte has no significant effect on the properties of the NW arrays. ► Deposition frequency has considerable effects on the magnetic properties of NWs. - Abstract: Highly ordered arrays of Co 1−x Zn x (0 ≤ x ≤ 0.74) nanowires (NWs) with diameters of ∼35 nm and high length-to-diameter ratios (up to 150) were fabricated by co-electrodeposition of Co and Zn into pores of anodized aluminum oxide (AAO) templates. The Co and Zn contents of the NWs were adjusted by varying the ratio of Zn and Co ion concentrations in the electrolyte. The effect of the Zn content, electrodeposition conditions (frequency and pH) and annealing on the structural and magnetic properties (e.g., coercivity (Hc) and squareness (Sq)) of NW arrays were investigated using X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy, electron diffraction, and alternating gradient force magnetometer (AGFM). XRD patterns reveal that an increase in the concentration of Zn ions of the electrolyte forces the hcp crystal structure of Co NWs to change into an amorphous phase, resulting in a significant reduction in Hc. It was found that the magnetic properties of NWs can be significantly improved by appropriate annealing process. The highest values for Hc (2050 Oe) and Sq (0.98) were obtained for NWs electrodeposited using 0.95/0.05 Co:Zn concentrations at 200 Hz and annealed at 575 °C. While the pH of electrolyte is found to have no significant effect on the structural and magnetic properties of the NW arrays, the electrodeposition frequency has considerable effects on the magnetic properties of the NW arrays. The changes in magnetic property of NWs are rooted in a competition between shape anisotropy and

  5. Fabrication of CoZn alloy nanowire arrays: Significant improvement in magnetic properties by annealing process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koohbor, M. [Department of Physics, University of Kurdistan, Sanandaj (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Soltanian, S., E-mail: s.soltanian@gmail.com [Department of Physics, University of Kurdistan, Sanandaj (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of British Columbia, Vancouver (Canada); Najafi, M. [Department of Physics, University of Kurdistan, Sanandaj (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Department of Physics, Hamadan University of Technology, Hamadan (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Servati, P. [Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of British Columbia, Vancouver (Canada)

    2012-01-05

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Increasing the Zn concentration changes the structure of NWs from hcp to amorphous. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Increasing the Zn concentration significantly reduces the Hc value of NWs. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Magnetic properties of CoZn NWs can be significantly enhanced by appropriate annealing. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The pH of electrolyte has no significant effect on the properties of the NW arrays. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Deposition frequency has considerable effects on the magnetic properties of NWs. - Abstract: Highly ordered arrays of Co{sub 1-x}Zn{sub x} (0 {<=} x {<=} 0.74) nanowires (NWs) with diameters of {approx}35 nm and high length-to-diameter ratios (up to 150) were fabricated by co-electrodeposition of Co and Zn into pores of anodized aluminum oxide (AAO) templates. The Co and Zn contents of the NWs were adjusted by varying the ratio of Zn and Co ion concentrations in the electrolyte. The effect of the Zn content, electrodeposition conditions (frequency and pH) and annealing on the structural and magnetic properties (e.g., coercivity (Hc) and squareness (Sq)) of NW arrays were investigated using X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy, electron diffraction, and alternating gradient force magnetometer (AGFM). XRD patterns reveal that an increase in the concentration of Zn ions of the electrolyte forces the hcp crystal structure of Co NWs to change into an amorphous phase, resulting in a significant reduction in Hc. It was found that the magnetic properties of NWs can be significantly improved by appropriate annealing process. The highest values for Hc (2050 Oe) and Sq (0.98) were obtained for NWs electrodeposited using 0.95/0.05 Co:Zn concentrations at 200 Hz and annealed at 575 Degree-Sign C. While the pH of electrolyte is found to have no significant effect on the structural and magnetic properties of the NW arrays, the electrodeposition frequency has considerable effects on

  6. Improving comparability between microarray probe signals by thermodynamic intensity correction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruun, G. M.; Wernersson, Rasmus; Juncker, Agnieszka

    2007-01-01

    different probes. It is therefore of great interest to correct for the variation between probes. Much of this variation is sequence dependent. We demonstrate that a thermodynamic model for hybridization of either DNA or RNA to a DNA microarray, which takes the sequence-dependent probe affinities...... determination of transcription start sites for a subset of yeast genes. In another application, we identify present/absent calls for probes hybridized to the sequenced Escherichia coli strain O157:H7 EDL933. The model improves the correct calls from 85 to 95% relative to raw intensity measures. The model thus...... makes applications which depend on comparisons between probes aimed at different sections of the same target more reliable....

  7. Compression stockings significantly improve hemodynamic performance in post-thrombotic syndrome irrespective of class or length.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lattimer, Christopher R; Azzam, Mustapha; Kalodiki, Evi; Makris, Gregory C; Geroulakos, George

    2013-07-01

    Graduated elastic compression (GEC) stockings have been demonstrated to reduce the morbidity associated with post-thrombotic syndrome. The ideal length or compression strength required to achieve this is speculative and related to physician preference and patient compliance. The aim of this study was to evaluate the hemodynamic performance of four different stockings and determine the patient's preference. Thirty-four consecutive patients (40 legs, 34 male) with post-thrombotic syndrome were tested with four different stockings (Mediven plus open toe, Bayreuth, Germany) of their size in random order: class 1 (18-21 mm Hg) and class II (23-32 mm Hg), below-knee (BK) and above-knee thigh-length (AK). The median age, Venous Clinical Severity Score, Venous Segmental Disease Score, and Villalta scale were 62 years (range, 31-81 years), 8 (range, 1-21), 5 (range, 2-10), and 10 (range, 2-22), respectively. The C of C0-6EsAs,d,pPr,o was C0 = 2, C2 = 1, C3 = 3, C4a = 12, C4b = 7, C5 = 12, C6 = 3. Obstruction and reflux was observed on duplex in 47.5% legs, with deep venous reflux alone in 45%. Air plethysmography was used to measure the venous filling index (VFI), venous volume, and time to fill 90% of the venous volume. Direct pressure measurements were obtained while lying and standing using the PicoPress device (Microlab Elettronica, Nicolò, Italy). The pressure sensor was placed underneath the test stocking 5 cm above and 2 cm posterior to the medial malleolus. At the end of the study session, patients stated their preferred stocking based on comfort. The VFI, venous volume, and time to fill 90% of the venous volume improved significantly with all types of stocking versus no compression. In class I, the VFI (mL/s) improved from a median of 4.9 (range, 1.7-16.3) without compression to 3.7 (range, 0-14) BK (24.5%) and 3.6 (range, 0.6-14.5) AK (26.5%). With class II, the corresponding improvement was to 4.0 (range, 0.3-16.2) BK (18.8%) and 3.7 (range, 0.5-14.2) AK (24

  8. Significant improvement of intestinal microbiota of gibel carp (Carassius auratus gibelio) after traditional Chinese medicine feeding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Z B; Gatesoupe, F-J; Li, T T; Wang, X H; Zhang, Q Q; Feng, D Y; Feng, Y Q; Chen, H; Li, A H

    2018-03-01

    Increasing attention has been attracted to intestinal microbiota, due to interactions with nutrition, metabolism and immune defence of the host. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) feed additives have been applied in aquaculture to improve fish health, but the interaction with fish gut microbiota is still poorly understood. This study aimed to explore the effect of adding TCM in feed on the intestinal microbiota of gibel carp (Carassius auratus gibelio). Bacterial communities of 16 fish intestinal contents and one water sample were characterized by high-throughput sequencing and analysis of the V4-V5 region of the 16S rRNA gene. The results showed that the composition and structure of the bacterial community were significantly altered by the TCM feeding. Some phyla increased markedly (Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, Acidobacteria, etc.), while Fusobacteria were significantly reduced. Concurrently, the richness and diversity of the taxonomic units increased, and the microbiota composition of TCM-treated fish was more homogeneous among individuals. At the genus level, the addition of TCM tended to reduce the incidence of potential pathogens (Aeromonas, Acinetobacter and Shewanella), while stimulating the emergence of some potential probiotics (Lactobacillus, Lactococcus, Bacillus and Pseudomonas). These data suggested that the feed additive could regulate the fish intestinal microbiota by reinforcing the microbial balance. This study may provide useful information for further application of TCM for diseases prevention and stress management in aquaculture. © 2017 The Society for Applied Microbiology.

  9. Induction-heating MOCVD reactor with significantly improved heating efficiency and reduced harmful magnetic coupling

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Kuang-Hui; Alotaibi, Hamad S.; Sun, Haiding; Lin, Ronghui; Guo, Wenzhe; Torres-Castanedo, Carlos G.; Liu, Kaikai; Galan, Sergio V.; Li, Xiaohang

    2018-01-01

    In a conventional induction-heating III-nitride metalorganic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) reactor, the induction coil is outside the chamber. Therefore, the magnetic field does not couple with the susceptor well, leading to compromised heating efficiency and harmful coupling with the gas inlet and thus possible overheating. Hence, the gas inlet has to be at a minimum distance away from the susceptor. Because of the elongated flow path, premature reactions can be more severe, particularly between Al- and B-containing precursors and NH3. Here, we propose a structure that can significantly improve the heating efficiency and allow the gas inlet to be closer to the susceptor. Specifically, the induction coil is designed to surround the vertical cylinder of a T-shaped susceptor comprising the cylinder and a top horizontal plate holding the wafer substrate within the reactor. Therefore, the cylinder coupled most magnetic field to serve as the thermal source for the plate. Furthermore, the plate can block and thus significantly reduce the uncoupled magnetic field above the susceptor, thereby allowing the gas inlet to be closer. The results show approximately 140% and 2.6 times increase in the heating and susceptor coupling efficiencies, respectively, as well as a 90% reduction in the harmful magnetic flux on the gas inlet.

  10. Induction-heating MOCVD reactor with significantly improved heating efficiency and reduced harmful magnetic coupling

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Kuang-Hui

    2018-02-23

    In a conventional induction-heating III-nitride metalorganic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) reactor, the induction coil is outside the chamber. Therefore, the magnetic field does not couple with the susceptor well, leading to compromised heating efficiency and harmful coupling with the gas inlet and thus possible overheating. Hence, the gas inlet has to be at a minimum distance away from the susceptor. Because of the elongated flow path, premature reactions can be more severe, particularly between Al- and B-containing precursors and NH3. Here, we propose a structure that can significantly improve the heating efficiency and allow the gas inlet to be closer to the susceptor. Specifically, the induction coil is designed to surround the vertical cylinder of a T-shaped susceptor comprising the cylinder and a top horizontal plate holding the wafer substrate within the reactor. Therefore, the cylinder coupled most magnetic field to serve as the thermal source for the plate. Furthermore, the plate can block and thus significantly reduce the uncoupled magnetic field above the susceptor, thereby allowing the gas inlet to be closer. The results show approximately 140% and 2.6 times increase in the heating and susceptor coupling efficiencies, respectively, as well as a 90% reduction in the harmful magnetic flux on the gas inlet.

  11. Improving the signal-to-noise ratio in ultrasound-modulated optical tomography by a lock-in amplifier

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Lili; Wu, Jingping; Lin, Guimin; Hu, Liangjun; Li, Hui

    2016-10-01

    With high spatial resolution of ultrasonic location and high sensitivity of optical detection, ultrasound-modulated optical tomography (UOT) is a promising noninvasive biological tissue imaging technology. In biological tissue, the ultrasound-modulated light signals are very weak and are overwhelmed by the strong unmodulated light signals. It is a difficulty and key to efficiently pick out the weak modulated light from strong unmodulated light in UOT. Under the effect of an ultrasonic field, the scattering light intensity presents a periodic variation as the ultrasonic frequency changes. So the modulated light signals would be escape from the high unmodulated light signals, when the modulated light signals and the ultrasonic signal are processed cross correlation operation by a lock-in amplifier and without a chopper. Experimental results indicated that the signal-to-noise ratio of UOT is significantly improved by a lock-in amplifier, and the higher the repetition frequency of pulsed ultrasonic wave, the better the signal-to-noise ratio of UOT.

  12. Large-Signal Code TESLA: Improvements in the Implementation and in the Model

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Chernyavskiy, Igor A; Vlasov, Alexander N; Anderson, Jr., Thomas M; Cooke, Simon J; Levush, Baruch; Nguyen, Khanh T

    2006-01-01

    We describe the latest improvements made in the large-signal code TESLA, which include transformation of the code to a Fortran-90/95 version with dynamical memory allocation and extension of the model...

  13. Asymmetric BMP4 signalling improves the realism of kidney organoids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, Christopher G; Lawrence, Melanie L; Munro, David A D; Elhendawi, Mona; Mullins, John J; Davies, Jamie A

    2017-11-01

    We present a strategy for increasing the anatomical realism of organoids by applying asymmetric cues to mimic spatial information that is present in natural embryonic development, and demonstrate it using mouse kidney organoids. Existing methods for making kidney organoids in mice yield developing nephrons arranged around a symmetrical collecting duct tree that has no ureter. We use transplant experiments to demonstrate plasticity in the fate choice between collecting duct and ureter, and show that an environment rich in BMP4 promotes differentiation of early collecting ducts into uroplakin-positive, unbranched, ureter-like epithelial tubules. Further, we show that application of BMP4-releasing beads in one place in an organoid can break the symmetry of the system, causing a nearby collecting duct to develop into a uroplakin-positive, broad, unbranched, ureter-like 'trunk' from one end of which true collecting duct branches radiate and induce nephron development in an arrangement similar to natural kidneys. The idea of using local symmetry-breaking cues to improve the realism of organoids may have applications to organoid systems other than the kidney.

  14. Significant improvements in stability and reproducibility of atomic-scale atomic force microscopy in liquid

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akrami, S M R; Nakayachi, H; Fukuma, T; Watanabe-Nakayama, T; Asakawa, H

    2014-01-01

    Recent advancement of dynamic-mode atomic force microscopy (AFM) for liquid-environment applications enabled atomic-scale studies on various interfacial phenomena. However, instabilities and poor reproducibility of the measurements often prevent systematic studies. To solve this problem, we have investigated the effect of various tip treatment methods for atomic-scale imaging and force measurements in liquid. The tested methods include Si coating, Ar plasma, Ar sputtering and UV/O 3 cleaning. We found that all the methods provide significant improvements in both the imaging and force measurements in spite of the tip transfer through the air. Among the methods, we found that the Si coating provides the best stability and reproducibility in the measurements. To understand the origin of the fouling resistance of the cleaned tip surface and the difference between the cleaning methods, we have investigated the tip surface properties by x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and contact angle measurements. The results show that the contaminations adsorbed on the tip during the tip transfer through the air should desorb from the surface when it is immersed in aqueous solution due to the enhanced hydrophilicity by the tip treatments. The tip surface prepared by the Si coating is oxidized when it is immersed in aqueous solution. This creates local spots where stable hydration structures are formed. For the other methods, there is no active mechanism to create such local hydration sites. Thus, the hydration structure formed under the tip apex is not necessarily stable. These results reveal the desirable tip properties for atomic-scale AFM measurements in liquid, which should serve as a guideline for further improvements of the tip treatment methods. (paper)

  15. Significant improvement of accuracy and precision in the determination of trace rare earths by fluorescence analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ozawa, L.; Hersh, H.N.

    1976-01-01

    Most of the rare earths in yttrium, gadolinium and lanthanum oxides emit characteristic fluorescent line spectra under irradiation with photons, electrons and x rays. The sensitivity and selectivity of the rare earth fluorescences are high enough to determine the trace amounts (0.01 to 100 ppM) of rare earths. The absolute fluorescent intensities of solids, however, are markedly affected by the synthesis procedure, level of contamination and crystal perfection, resulting in poor accuracy and low precision for the method (larger than 50 percent error). Special care in preparation of the samples is required to obtain good accuracy and precision. It is found that the accuracy and precision for the determination of trace (less than 10 ppM) rare earths by fluorescence analysis improved significantly, while still maintaining the sensitivity, when the determination is made by comparing the ratio of the fluorescent intensities of the trace rare earths to that of a deliberately added rare earth as reference. The variation in the absolute fluorescent intensity remains, but is compensated for by measuring the fluorescent line intensity ratio. Consequently, the determination of trace rare earths (with less than 3 percent error) is easily made by a photoluminescence technique in which the rare earths are excited directly by photons. Accuracy is still maintained when the absolute fluorescent intensity is reduced by 50 percent through contamination by Ni, Fe, Mn or Pb (about 100 ppM). Determination accuracy is also improved for fluorescence analysis by electron excitation and x-ray excitation. For some rare earths, however, accuracy by these techniques is reduced because indirect excitation mechanisms are involved. The excitation mechanisms and the interferences between rare earths are also reported

  16. Properties of an improved Gabor wavelet transform and its applications to seismic signal processing and interpretation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Zhan-Huai; Yan, Sheng-Gang

    2017-12-01

    This paper presents an analytical study of the complete transform of improved Gabor wavelets (IGWs), and discusses its application to the processing and interpretation of seismic signals. The complete Gabor wavelet transform has the following properties. First, unlike the conventional transform, the improved Gabor wavelet transform (IGWT) maps time domain signals to the time-frequency domain instead of the time-scale domain. Second, the IGW's dominant frequency is fixed, so the transform can perform signal frequency division, where the dominant frequency components of the extracted sub-band signal carry essentially the same information as the corresponding components of the original signal, and the subband signal bandwidth can be regulated effectively by the transform's resolution factor. Third, a time-frequency filter consisting of an IGWT and its inverse transform can accurately locate target areas in the time-frequency field and perform filtering in a given time-frequency range. The complete IGW transform's properties are investigated using simulation experiments and test cases, showing positive results for seismic signal processing and interpretation, such as enhancing seismic signal resolution, permitting signal frequency division, and allowing small faults to be identified.

  17. Flavonol-rich dark cocoa significantly decreases plasma endothelin-1 and improves cognition in urban children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calderón-Garcidueñas, Lilian; Mora-Tiscareño, Antonieta; Franco-Lira, Maricela; Cross, Janet V; Engle, Randall; Aragón-Flores, Mariana; Gómez-Garza, Gilberto; Jewells, Valerie; Medina-Cortina, Humberto; Solorio, Edelmira; Chao, Chih-Kai; Zhu, Hongtu; Mukherjee, Partha S; Ferreira-Azevedo, Lara; Torres-Jardón, Ricardo; D'Angiulli, Amedeo

    2013-01-01

    Air pollution exposures are linked to systemic inflammation, cardiovascular and respiratory morbidity and mortality, neuroinflammation and neuropathology in young urbanites. In particular, most Mexico City Metropolitan Area (MCMA) children exhibit subtle cognitive deficits, and neuropathology studies show 40% of them exhibiting frontal tau hyperphosphorylation and 51% amyloid-β diffuse plaques (compared to 0% in low pollution control children). We assessed whether a short cocoa intervention can be effective in decreasing plasma endothelin 1 (ET-1) and/or inflammatory mediators in MCMA children. Thirty gram of dark cocoa with 680 mg of total flavonols were given daily for 10.11 ± 3.4 days (range 9-24 days) to 18 children (10.55 years, SD = 1.45; 11F/7M). Key metabolite ratios in frontal white matter and in hippocampus pre and during cocoa intervention were quantified by magnetic resonance spectroscopy. ET-1 significantly decreased after cocoa treatment (p = 0.0002). Fifteen children (83%) showed a marginally significant individual improvement in one or both of the applied simple short memory tasks. Endothelial dysfunction is a key feature of exposure to particulate matter (PM) and decreased endothelin-1 bioavailability is likely useful for brain function in the context of air pollution. Our findings suggest that cocoa interventions may be critical for early implementation of neuroprotection of highly exposed urban children. Multi-domain nutraceutical interventions could limit the risk for endothelial dysfunction, cerebral hypoperfusion, neuroinflammation, cognitive deficits, structural volumetric detrimental brain effects, and the early development of the neuropathological hallmarks of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases.

  18. Model training across multiple breeding cycles significantly improves genomic prediction accuracy in rye (Secale cereale L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Auinger, Hans-Jürgen; Schönleben, Manfred; Lehermeier, Christina; Schmidt, Malthe; Korzun, Viktor; Geiger, Hartwig H; Piepho, Hans-Peter; Gordillo, Andres; Wilde, Peer; Bauer, Eva; Schön, Chris-Carolin

    2016-11-01

    Genomic prediction accuracy can be significantly increased by model calibration across multiple breeding cycles as long as selection cycles are connected by common ancestors. In hybrid rye breeding, application of genome-based prediction is expected to increase selection gain because of long selection cycles in population improvement and development of hybrid components. Essentially two prediction scenarios arise: (1) prediction of the genetic value of lines from the same breeding cycle in which model training is performed and (2) prediction of lines from subsequent cycles. It is the latter from which a reduction in cycle length and consequently the strongest impact on selection gain is expected. We empirically investigated genome-based prediction of grain yield, plant height and thousand kernel weight within and across four selection cycles of a hybrid rye breeding program. Prediction performance was assessed using genomic and pedigree-based best linear unbiased prediction (GBLUP and PBLUP). A total of 1040 S 2 lines were genotyped with 16 k SNPs and each year testcrosses of 260 S 2 lines were phenotyped in seven or eight locations. The performance gap between GBLUP and PBLUP increased significantly for all traits when model calibration was performed on aggregated data from several cycles. Prediction accuracies obtained from cross-validation were in the order of 0.70 for all traits when data from all cycles (N CS  = 832) were used for model training and exceeded within-cycle accuracies in all cases. As long as selection cycles are connected by a sufficient number of common ancestors and prediction accuracy has not reached a plateau when increasing sample size, aggregating data from several preceding cycles is recommended for predicting genetic values in subsequent cycles despite decreasing relatedness over time.

  19. Significantly improving trace thallium removal from surface waters during coagulation enhanced by nanosized manganese dioxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huangfu, Xiaoliu; Ma, Chengxue; Ma, Jun; He, Qiang; Yang, Chun; Jiang, Jin; Wang, Yaan; Wu, Zhengsong

    2017-02-01

    Thallium (Tl) is an element of high toxicity and significant accumulation in human body. There is an urgent need for the development of appropriate strategies for trace Tl removal in drinking water treatment plants. In this study, the efficiency and mechanism of trace Tl (0.5 μg/L) removal by conventional coagulation enhanced by nanosized manganese dioxide (nMnO 2 ) were explored in simulated water and two representative surface waters (a river water and a reservoir water obtained from Northeast China). Experimental results showed that nMnO 2 significantly improve Tl(I) removal from selected waters. The removal efficiency was dramatically higher in the simulated water, demonstrating by less than 0.1 μg/L Tl residual. The enhancement of trace Tl removal in the surface waters decreased to a certain extent. Both adjusting water pH to alkaline condition and preoxidation of Tl(I) to Tl(III) benefit trace Tl removal from surface waters. Data also indicated that competitive cation of Ca 2+ decreased the efficiency of trace Tl removal, resulting from the reduction of Tl adsorption on nMnO 2 . Humic acid could largely low Tl removal efficiency during nMnO 2 enhanced coagulation processes. Trace elemental Tl firstly adsorbed on nMnO 2 and then removed accompanying with nMnO 2 settling. The information obtained in the present study may provide a potential strategy for drinking water treatment plants threatened by trace Tl. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. A Decline in Response Variability Improves Neural Signal Detection during Auditory Task Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Trapp, Gardiner; Buran, Bradley N; Sen, Kamal; Semple, Malcolm N; Sanes, Dan H

    2016-10-26

    The detection of a sensory stimulus arises from a significant change in neural activity, but a sensory neuron's response is rarely identical to successive presentations of the same stimulus. Large trial-to-trial variability would limit the central nervous system's ability to reliably detect a stimulus, presumably affecting perceptual performance. However, if response variability were to decrease while firing rate remained constant, then neural sensitivity could improve. Here, we asked whether engagement in an auditory detection task can modulate response variability, thereby increasing neural sensitivity. We recorded telemetrically from the core auditory cortex of gerbils, both while they engaged in an amplitude-modulation detection task and while they sat quietly listening to the identical stimuli. Using a signal detection theory framework, we found that neural sensitivity was improved during task performance, and this improvement was closely associated with a decrease in response variability. Moreover, units with the greatest change in response variability had absolute neural thresholds most closely aligned with simultaneously measured perceptual thresholds. Our findings suggest that the limitations imposed by response variability diminish during task performance, thereby improving the sensitivity of neural encoding and potentially leading to better perceptual sensitivity. The detection of a sensory stimulus arises from a significant change in neural activity. However, trial-to-trial variability of the neural response may limit perceptual performance. If the neural response to a stimulus is quite variable, then the response on a given trial could be confused with the pattern of neural activity generated when the stimulus is absent. Therefore, a neural mechanism that served to reduce response variability would allow for better stimulus detection. By recording from the cortex of freely moving animals engaged in an auditory detection task, we found that variability

  1. Significant effect of Ca2+ on improving the heat resistance of lactic acid bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Song; Chen, Xiao Dong

    2013-07-01

    The heat resistance of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) has been extensively investigated due to its highly practical significance. Reconstituted skim milk (RSM) has been found to be one of the most effective protectant wall materials for microencapsulating microorganisms during convective drying, such as spray drying. In addition to proteins and carbohydrate, RSM is rich in calcium. It is not clear which component is critical in the RSM protection mechanism. This study investigated the independent effect of calcium. Ca(2+) was added to lactose solution to examine its influence on the heat resistance of Lactobacillus rhamnosus ZY, Lactobacillus casei Zhang, Lactobacillus plantarum P8 and Streptococcus thermophilus ND03. The results showed that certain Ca(2+) concentrations enhanced the heat resistance of the LAB strains to different extents, that is produced higher survival and shorter regrowth lag times of the bacterial cells. In some cases, the improvements were dramatic. More scientifically insightful and more intensive instrumental study of the Ca(2+) behavior around and in the cells should be carried out in the near future. In the meantime, this work may lead to the development of more cost-effective wall materials with Ca(2+) added as a prime factor. © 2013 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Targeting Heparin to Collagen within Extracellular Matrix Significantly Reduces Thrombogenicity and Improves Endothelialization of Decellularized Tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Bin; Suen, Rachel; Wertheim, Jason A; Ameer, Guillermo A

    2016-12-12

    Thrombosis within small-diameter vascular grafts limits the development of bioartificial, engineered vascular conduits, especially those derived from extracellular matrix (ECM). Here we describe an easy-to-implement strategy to chemically modify vascular ECM by covalently linking a collagen binding peptide (CBP) to heparin to form a heparin derivative (CBP-heparin) that selectively binds a subset of collagens. Modification of ECM with CBP-heparin leads to increased deposition of functional heparin (by ∼7.2-fold measured by glycosaminoglycan composition) and a corresponding reduction in platelet binding (>70%) and whole blood clotting (>80%) onto the ECM. Furthermore, addition of CBP-heparin to the ECM stabilizes long-term endothelial cell attachment to the lumen of ECM-derived vascular conduits, potentially through recruitment of heparin-binding growth factors that ultimately improve the durability of endothelialization in vitro. Overall, our findings provide a simple yet effective method to increase deposition of functional heparin on the surface of ECM-based vascular grafts and thereby minimize thrombogenicity of decellularized tissue, overcoming a significant challenge in tissue engineering of bioartificial vessels and vascularized organs.

  3. Significant Improvement in Chronic Persistent Headaches Caused by Small Rathke Cleft Cysts After Transsphenoidal Surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fukui, Issei; Hayashi, Yasuhiko; Kita, Daisuke; Sasagawa, Yasuo; Oishi, Masahiro; Tachibana, Osamu; Nakada, Mitsutoshi

    2017-03-01

    Rathke cleft cysts (RCC) usually are asymptomatic and can be observed via the use of conservative methods. Some patients with RCCs, however, have severe headaches even if they are small enough to be confined to the sella, and these small RCCs seldom have been discussed. This study presents an investigation into clinical characteristics of small RCCs associated with severe headaches, demonstrating efficacy and safety of endoscopic transsphenoidal surgery (ETSS) to relieve headaches. In this study, 13 patients with small RCCs (maximum diameter HIT-6) score was calculated both pre- and postoperatively to evaluate headache severity. All patients complained of severe headaches, which disturbed their daily life. Most headaches were nonpulsating and localized in the frontal area. Characteristically, 6 patients (46%) experienced severe headaches with sudden onset that continued chronically. HIT-6 score was 64 on average, meaning headaches affected daily life severely. After surgical decompression of the cyst, headache in all of the patients improved dramatically and HIT-6 score decreased significantly to 37, suggesting that headaches were diminished. No newly developed deficiencies of the anterior pituitary lobe function were detected. Postoperative occurrence of diabetes insipidus was found in 2 patients, both of which were transient. No recurring cysts were found. Severe headaches can develop from small RCCs. In the present study, ETSS was performed on such patients effectively and safely to relieve their headaches. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Magnetic resonance imaging of the supraspinatus tendon: The significance of signal intensity alterations at the 'critical zone'

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jones, A.O.

    1998-01-01

    A pictorial essay of normal and abnormal appearances of the supraspinatus tendon is presented. An increased signal intensity within the supraspinatus tendon on short TE sequences is not necessarily abnormal. Increased signal seen within the tendon on modern magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) units is often due to a phenomenon known as the 'magic angle' effect. Only when supraspinatus tendon signal intensity is greater than that of muscle on long TE (T2) sequences should it be considered to be abnormal. The physical basis for the magic angle effect is outlined and a pictorial essay demonstrating the practical implications of this effect is presented. A comparison is made to signal intensity changes seen with partial and complete tears of the supraspinatus tendon. Correlation is made with important morphologic features of partial or complete tears. Copyright (1998) Blackwell Science Pty Ltd

  5. Successful percutaneous coronary intervention significantly improves coronary sinus blood flow as assessed by transthoracic echocardiography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyubarova, Radmila; Boden, William E; Fein, Steven A; Schulman-Marcus, Joshua; Torosoff, Mikhail

    2018-06-01

    Transthoracic echocardiography (TTE) has been used to assess coronary sinus blood flow (CSBF), which reflects total coronary arterial blood flow. Successful angioplasty is expected to improve coronary arterial blood flow. Changes in CSBF after percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), as assessed by TTE, have not been systematically evaluated. TTE can be utilized to reflect increased CSBF after a successful, clinically indicated PCI. The study cohort included 31 patients (18 females, 62 ± 11 years old) referred for diagnostic cardiac catheterization for suspected coronary artery disease and possible PCI, when clinically indicated. All performed PCIs were successful, with good angiographic outcome. CSBF per cardiac cycle (mL/beat) was measured using transthoracic two-dimensional and Doppler flow imaging as the product of coronary sinus (CS) area and CS flow time-velocity integral. CSBF per minute (mL/min) was calculated as the product of heart rate and CSBF per cardiac cycle. In each patient, CSBF was assessed prospectively, before and after cardiac catheterization with and without clinically indicated PCI. Within- and between-group differences in CSBF before and after PCI were assessed using repeated measures analysis of variance. Technically adequate CSBF measurements were obtained in 24 patients (77%). In patients who did not undergo PCI, there was no significant change in CSBF (278.1 ± 344.1 versus 342.7 ± 248.5, p = 0.36). By contrast, among patients who underwent PCI, CSBF increased significantly (254.3 ± 194.7 versus 618.3 ± 358.5 mL/min, p < 0.01, p-interaction = 0.03). Other hemodynamic and echocardiographic parameters did not change significantly before and after cardiac catheterization in either treatment group. Transthoracic echocardiographic assessment can be employed to document CSBF changes after angioplasty. Future studies are needed to explore the clinical utility of this noninvasive metric.

  6. Improved Encrypted-Signals-Based Reversible Data Hiding Using Code Division Multiplexing and Value Expansion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xianyi Chen

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Compared to the encrypted-image-based reversible data hiding (EIRDH method, the encrypted-signals-based reversible data hiding (ESRDH technique is a novel way to achieve a greater embedding rate and better quality of the decrypted signals. Motivated by ESRDH using signal energy transfer, we propose an improved ESRDH method using code division multiplexing and value expansion. At the beginning, each pixel of the original image is divided into several parts containing a little signal and multiple equal signals. Next, all signals are encrypted by Paillier encryption. And then a large number of secret bits are embedded into the encrypted signals using code division multiplexing and value expansion. Since the sum of elements in any spreading sequence is equal to 0, lossless quality of directly decrypted signals can be achieved using code division multiplexing on the encrypted equal signals. Although the visual quality is reduced, high-capacity data hiding can be accomplished by conducting value expansion on the encrypted little signal. The experimental results show that our method is better than other methods in terms of the embedding rate and average PSNR.

  7. Heat storage in forest biomass significantly improves energy balance closure particularly during stable conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindroth, A.; Mölder, M.; Lagergren, F.

    2009-08-01

    Temperature measurements in trunks and branches in a mature ca. 100 years-old mixed pine and spruce forest in central Sweden were used to estimate the heat storage in the tree biomass. The estimated heat flux in the sample trees and data on biomass distributions were used to scale up to stand level biomass heat fluxes. The rate of change of sensible and latent heat storage in the air layer below the level of the flux measurements was estimated from air temperature and humidity profile measurements and soil heat flux was estimated from heat flux plates and soil temperature measurements. The fluxes of sensible and latent heat from the forest were measured with an eddy covariance system in a tower. The analysis was made for a two-month period in summer of 1995. The tree biomass heat flux was the largest of the estimated storage components and varied between 40 and -35 W m-2 on summer days with nice weather. Averaged over two months the diurnal maximum of total heat storage was 45 W m-2 and the minimum was -35 W m-2. The soil heat flux and the sensible heat storage in air were out of phase with the biomass flux and they reached maximum values that were about 75% of the maximum of the tree biomass heat storage. The energy balance closure improved significantly when the total heat storage was added to the turbulent fluxes. The slope of a regression line with sum of fluxes and storage as independent and net radiation as dependent variable, increased from 0.86 to 0.95 for half-hourly data and the scatter was also reduced. The most significant finding was, however, that during nights with strongly stable conditions when the sensible heat flux dropped to nearly zero, the total storage matched the net radiation nearly perfectly. Another interesting result was that the mean energy imbalance started to increase when the Richardson number became more negative than ca. -0.1. In fact, the largest energy deficit occurred at maximum instability. Our conclusion is that eddy

  8. Significant improvement of eczema with skin care and food elimination in small children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norrman, Gunilla; Tomicić, Sara; Böttcher, Malin Fagerås; Oldaeus, Göran; Strömberg, Leif; Fälth-magnusson, Karin

    2005-10-01

    To evaluate common methods of investigation and treatment in children younger than 2 y of age with eczema, with or without sensitization to food allergens. One hundred and twenty-three children younger than 2 y of age with eczema and suspected food allergy were included in this prospective study. The children underwent skin-prick test with cow's milk, fresh hen's egg white and wheat. Specific IgE to milk and egg white was analysed. The eczema extent and severity was estimated with SCORAD before and after treatment. Children with a positive skin-prick test were instructed to exclude that food item from their diet. All children were treated with emollients and topical steroids when needed. Sixty-two of the children were skin-prick positive to at least one of the allergens; 62% had mild, 30% moderate and 8% severe eczema at their first visit. After treatment, 90% had mild, 10% moderate and 0% severe eczema. Forty-six per cent of the children had circulating IgE antibodies to milk or egg white. Ten per cent had specific IgE but negative skin-prick test to the same allergen. This subgroup improved their eczema significantly without elimination diet. The conventional treatments for children with eczema, i.e. skin care and food elimination, are effective. The beneficial effect of skin care as the first step should not be neglected, and it may not be necessary to eliminate food allergens to relieve skin symptoms in all food-sensitized children with eczema.

  9. Introduction of e-learning in dental radiology reveals significantly improved results in final examination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meckfessel, Sandra; Stühmer, Constantin; Bormann, Kai-Hendrik; Kupka, Thomas; Behrends, Marianne; Matthies, Herbert; Vaske, Bernhard; Stiesch, Meike; Gellrich, Nils-Claudius; Rücker, Martin

    2011-01-01

    Because a traditionally instructed dental radiology lecture course is very time-consuming and labour-intensive, online courseware, including an interactive-learning module, was implemented to support the lectures. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the perceptions of students who have worked with web-based courseware as well as the effect on their results in final examinations. Users (n(3+4)=138) had access to the e-program from any networked computer at any time. Two groups (n(3)=71, n(4)=67) had to pass a final exam after using the e-course. Results were compared with two groups (n(1)=42, n(2)=48) who had studied the same content by attending traditional lectures. In addition a survey of the students was statistically evaluated. Most of the respondents reported a positive attitude towards e-learning and would have appreciated more access to computer-assisted instruction. Two years after initiating the e-course the failure rate in the final examination dropped significantly, from 40% to less than 2%. The very positive response to the e-program and improved test scores demonstrated the effectiveness of our e-course as a learning aid. Interactive modules in step with clinical practice provided learning that is not achieved by traditional teaching methods alone. To what extent staff savings are possible is part of a further study. Copyright © 2010 European Association for Cranio-Maxillo-Facial Surgery. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Mapping Soil Properties of Africa at 250 m Resolution: Random Forests Significantly Improve Current Predictions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomislav Hengl

    Full Text Available 80% of arable land in Africa has low soil fertility and suffers from physical soil problems. Additionally, significant amounts of nutrients are lost every year due to unsustainable soil management practices. This is partially the result of insufficient use of soil management knowledge. To help bridge the soil information gap in Africa, the Africa Soil Information Service (AfSIS project was established in 2008. Over the period 2008-2014, the AfSIS project compiled two point data sets: the Africa Soil Profiles (legacy database and the AfSIS Sentinel Site database. These data sets contain over 28 thousand sampling locations and represent the most comprehensive soil sample data sets of the African continent to date. Utilizing these point data sets in combination with a large number of covariates, we have generated a series of spatial predictions of soil properties relevant to the agricultural management--organic carbon, pH, sand, silt and clay fractions, bulk density, cation-exchange capacity, total nitrogen, exchangeable acidity, Al content and exchangeable bases (Ca, K, Mg, Na. We specifically investigate differences between two predictive approaches: random forests and linear regression. Results of 5-fold cross-validation demonstrate that the random forests algorithm consistently outperforms the linear regression algorithm, with average decreases of 15-75% in Root Mean Squared Error (RMSE across soil properties and depths. Fitting and running random forests models takes an order of magnitude more time and the modelling success is sensitive to artifacts in the input data, but as long as quality-controlled point data are provided, an increase in soil mapping accuracy can be expected. Results also indicate that globally predicted soil classes (USDA Soil Taxonomy, especially Alfisols and Mollisols help improve continental scale soil property mapping, and are among the most important predictors. This indicates a promising potential for transferring

  11. Optimized distributed systems achieve significant performance improvement on sorted merging of massive VCF files.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xiaobo; Gao, Jingjing; Jin, Peng; Eng, Celeste; Burchard, Esteban G; Beaty, Terri H; Ruczinski, Ingo; Mathias, Rasika A; Barnes, Kathleen; Wang, Fusheng; Qin, Zhaohui S

    2018-06-01

    Sorted merging of genomic data is a common data operation necessary in many sequencing-based studies. It involves sorting and merging genomic data from different subjects by their genomic locations. In particular, merging a large number of variant call format (VCF) files is frequently required in large-scale whole-genome sequencing or whole-exome sequencing projects. Traditional single-machine based methods become increasingly inefficient when processing large numbers of files due to the excessive computation time and Input/Output bottleneck. Distributed systems and more recent cloud-based systems offer an attractive solution. However, carefully designed and optimized workflow patterns and execution plans (schemas) are required to take full advantage of the increased computing power while overcoming bottlenecks to achieve high performance. In this study, we custom-design optimized schemas for three Apache big data platforms, Hadoop (MapReduce), HBase, and Spark, to perform sorted merging of a large number of VCF files. These schemas all adopt the divide-and-conquer strategy to split the merging job into sequential phases/stages consisting of subtasks that are conquered in an ordered, parallel, and bottleneck-free way. In two illustrating examples, we test the performance of our schemas on merging multiple VCF files into either a single TPED or a single VCF file, which are benchmarked with the traditional single/parallel multiway-merge methods, message passing interface (MPI)-based high-performance computing (HPC) implementation, and the popular VCFTools. Our experiments suggest all three schemas either deliver a significant improvement in efficiency or render much better strong and weak scalabilities over traditional methods. Our findings provide generalized scalable schemas for performing sorted merging on genetics and genomics data using these Apache distributed systems.

  12. Cyclosporin A significantly improves preeclampsia signs and suppresses inflammation in a rat model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Bihui; Yang, Jinying; Huang, Qian; Bao, Junjie; Brennecke, Shaun Patrick; Liu, Huishu

    2016-05-01

    Preeclampsia is associated with an increased inflammatory response. Immune suppression might be an effective treatment. The aim of this study was to examine whether Cyclosporin A (CsA), an immunosuppressant, improves clinical characteristics of preeclampsia and suppresses inflammation in a lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induced preeclampsia rat model. Pregnant rats were randomly divided into 4 groups: group 1 (PE) rats each received LPS via tail vein on gestational day (GD) 14; group 2 (PE+CsA5) rats were pretreated with LPS (1.0 μg/kg) on GD 14 and were then treated with CsA (5mg/kg, ip) on GDs 16, 17 and 18; group 3 (PE+CsA10) rats were pretreated with LPS (1.0 μg/kg) on GD 14 and were then treated with CsA (10mg/kg, ip) on GDs 16, 17 and 18; group 4 (pregnant control, PC) rats were treated with the vehicle (saline) used for groups 1, 2 and 3. Systolic blood pressure, urinary albumin, biometric parameters and the levels of serum cytokines were measured on day 20. CsA treatment significantly reduced LPS-induced systolic blood pressure and the mean 24-h urinary albumin excretion. Pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-6, IL-17, IFN-γ and TNF-α were increased in the LPS treatment group but were reduced in (LPS+CsA) group (Ppreeclampsia signs and attenuated inflammatory responses in the LPS induced preeclampsia rat model which suggests that immunosuppressant might be an alternative management option for preeclampsia. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Parameter definition using vibration prediction software leads to significant drilling performance improvements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Amorim, Dalmo; Hanley, Chris Hanley; Fonseca, Isaac; Santos, Juliana [National Oilwell Varco, Houston TX (United States); Leite, Daltro J.; Borella, Augusto; Gozzi, Danilo [Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (PETROBRAS), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    2012-07-01

    The understanding and mitigation of downhole vibration has been a heavily researched subject in the oil industry as it results in more expensive drilling operations, as vibrations significantly diminish the amount of effective drilling energy available to the bit and generate forces that can push the bit or the Bottom Hole Assembly (BHA) off its concentric axis of rotation, producing high magnitude impacts with the borehole wall. In order to drill ahead, a sufficient amount of energy must be supplied by the rig to overcome the resistance of the drilling system, including the reactive torque of the system, drag forces, fluid pressure losses and energy dissipated by downhole vibrations, then providing the bit with the energy required to fail the rock. If the drill string enters resonant modes of vibration, not only does it decreases the amount of available energy to drill, but increases the potential for catastrophic downhole equipment and drilling bit failures. In this sense, the mitigation of downhole vibrations will result in faster, smoother, and cheaper drilling operations. A software tool using Finite Element Analysis (FEA) has been developed to provide better understanding of downhole vibration phenomena in drilling environments. The software tool calculates the response of the drilling system at various input conditions, based on the design of the wellbore along with the geometry of the Bottom Hole Assembly (BHA) and the drill string. It identifies where undesired levels of resonant vibration will be driven by certain combinations of specific drilling parameters, and also which combinations of drilling parameters will result in lower levels of vibration, so the least shocks, the highest penetration rate and the lowest cost per foot can be achieved. With the growing performance of personal computers, complex software systems modeling the drilling vibrations using FEA has been accessible to a wider audience of field users, further complimenting with real time

  14. Poststenotic signal attenuation on 3 D phase-contrast MR angiography: a useful finding in haemodynamically significant carotid artery stenosis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Iseda, T.; Nakano, S.; Miyahara, D.; Uchinokura, S.; Goya, T.; Wakisaka, S.

    2000-01-01

    We performed blinded visual evaluation of MR angiography (MRA) films in 44 patients with unilateral carotid artery stenosis to determine whether a flow gap and poststenotic signal attenuation on 3 D-PC MRA were useful signs of severe carotid artery stenosis. Although nine patients with a flow gap alone had various degrees of stenosis ranging from 22.2 to 77.3 % without any decrease in regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF), 13 patients with both a flow gap and poststenotic signal attenuation had severe stenoses of 80 % or more, with a definite decrease in baseline rCBF. The presence of both a flow gap and poststenotic signal attenuation on 3 D-PC MRA appeared to be a reliable marker of severe carotid artery stenosis with a decrease in rCBF. (orig.)

  15. Waste Minimization Improvements Achieved Through Six Sigma Analysis Result In Significant Cost Savings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mousseau, Jeffrey D.; Jansen, John R.; Janke, David H.; Plowman, Catherine M.

    2003-01-01

    Improved waste minimization practices at the Department of Energy's (DOE) Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) are leading to a 15% reduction in the generation of hazardous and radioactive waste. Bechtel, BWXT Idaho, LLC (BBWI), the prime management and operations contractor at the INEEL, applied the Six Sigma improvement process to the INEEL Waste Minimization Program to review existing processes and define opportunities for improvement. Our Six Sigma analysis team: composed of an executive champion, process owner, a black belt and yellow belt, and technical and business team members used this statistical based process approach to analyze work processes and produced ten recommendations for improvement. Recommendations ranged from waste generator financial accountability for newly generated waste to enhanced employee recognition programs for waste minimization efforts. These improvements have now been implemented to reduce waste generation rates and are producing positive results

  16. Thioredoxins, Glutaredoxins, and Peroxiredoxins—Molecular Mechanisms and Health Significance: from Cofactors to Antioxidants to Redox Signaling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanschmann, Eva-Maria; Godoy, José Rodrigo; Berndt, Carsten; Hudemann, Christoph

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Thioredoxins (Trxs), glutaredoxins (Grxs), and peroxiredoxins (Prxs) have been characterized as electron donors, guards of the intracellular redox state, and “antioxidants”. Today, these redox catalysts are increasingly recognized for their specific role in redox signaling. The number of publications published on the functions of these proteins continues to increase exponentially. The field is experiencing an exciting transformation, from looking at a general redox homeostasis and the pathological oxidative stress model to realizing redox changes as a part of localized, rapid, specific, and reversible redox-regulated signaling events. This review summarizes the almost 50 years of research on these proteins, focusing primarily on data from vertebrates and mammals. The role of Trx fold proteins in redox signaling is discussed by looking at reaction mechanisms, reversible oxidative post-translational modifications of proteins, and characterized interaction partners. On the basis of this analysis, the specific regulatory functions are exemplified for the cellular processes of apoptosis, proliferation, and iron metabolism. The importance of Trxs, Grxs, and Prxs for human health is addressed in the second part of this review, that is, their potential impact and functions in different cell types, tissues, and various pathological conditions. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 19, 1539–1605. PMID:23397885

  17. Contemporary Management of Acute Aortic Occlusion Has Evolved but Outcomes Have Not Significantly Improved.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, William P; Patel, Rupal K; Columbo, Jesse A; Flahive, Julie; Aiello, Francesco A; Baril, Donald T; Schanzer, Andres; Messina, Louis M

    2016-07-01

    hospitalization. AAO is now more commonly caused by in situ thrombosis rather than embolism. A high index of suspicion for AAO is required for prompt diagnosis and treatment, particularly when patients present with profound lower extremity neurologic deficit. In comparison with previous reports, the contemporary management of AAO includes increased use of axillobifemoral bypass and now involves endovascular revascularization, although a variety of open surgical procedures are utilized. However, the in-hospital mortality and morbidity of AAO has not decreased significantly over the last 2 decades and mid-term survival remains limited. Further study is required to identify strategies that improve outcomes after AAO. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Efficiency improvement of nuclear power plant operation: the significant role of advanced nuclear fuel technologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Van Velde, AA. de; Burtak, F.

    2000-01-01

    In this paper authors deals with nuclear fuel cycle and their economic aspects. At Siemens, the developments focusing on the reduction of fuel cycle costs are currently directed on .further batch average burnup increase, .improvement of fuel reliability, .enlargement of fuel operation margins, .improvement of methods for fuel design and core analysis. These items will be presented in detail in the full paper and illustrated by the global operating experience of Siemens fuel for both PWRs and BWRs. (authors)

  19. Small Signal Stability Improvement of Power Systems Using Optimal Load Responses in Competitive Electricity Markets

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hu, Weihao; Su, Chi; Chen, Zhe

    2011-01-01

    Since the hourly spot market price is available one day ahead in Denmark, the price could be transferred to the consumers and they may shift some of their loads from high price periods to the low price periods in order to save their energy costs. The optimal load response to an electricity price...... price is proposed. A 17-bus power system with high wind power penetrations, which resembles the Eastern Danish power system, is chosen as the study case. Simulation results show that the optimal load response to electricity prices is an effective measure to improve the small signal stability of power...... for demand side management generates different load profiles and may provide an opportunity to improve the small signal stability of power systems with high wind power penetrations. In this paper, the idea of power system small signal stability improvement by using optimal load response to the electricity...

  20. Millisecond photo-thermal process on significant improvement of supercapacitor’s performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, Kui; Wang, Jixiao; Wu, Ying; Zhao, Song; Wang, Zhi; Wang, Shichang

    2016-01-01

    Graphical abstract: A high way for charge transfer is created by a millisecond photo-thermal process which could decrease contact resistance among nanomaterials and improve the electrochemical performances. - Highlights: • Improve conductivity among nanomaterials with a millisecond photo-thermal process. • The specific capacitance can increase about 25% with an photo-thermal process. • The circle stability and rate capability can be improved above 10% with photo-thermal process. • Provide a new way that create electron path to improve electrochemical performance. - Abstract: Supercapacitors fabricated with nanomaterials usually have high specific capacitance and excellent performance. However, the small size of nanomaterials renders a considerable limitation of the contact area among nanomaterials, which is harmful to charge carrier transfer. This fact may hinder the development and application of nanomaterials in electrochemical storage systems. Here, a millisecond photo-thermal process was introduced to create a charge carries transfer path to decrease the contact resistance among nanomaterials, and enhance the electrochemical performance of supercapacitors. Polyaniline (PANI) nanowire, as a model nanomaterial, was used to modify electrodes under different photo-thermal process conditions. The modified electrodes were characterized by scanning electronic microscopy (SEM), cyclic voltammetry (CV), electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) and the results were analysed by equivalent circuit simulation. These results demonstrate that the photo-thermal process can alter the morphology of PANI nanowires, lower the charge transfer resistances and thus improve the performance of electrodes. The specific capacitance increase of the modified electrodes is about 25%. The improvement of the circle stability and rate capability are above 10%. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first attempt on research the effect of photo-thermal process on the conductivity

  1. A Review of New and Developing Technology to Significantly Improve Mars Sample-Return Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carsey, F.; Brophy, J.; Gilmore, M.; Rodgers, D.; Wilcox, B.

    2000-07-01

    A JPL development activity was initiated in FY 1999 for the purpose of examining and evaluating technologies that could materially improve future (i.e., beyond the 2005 launch) Mars sample return missions. The scope of the technology review was comprehensive and end-to-end; the goal was to improve mass, cost, risk, and scientific return. A specific objective was to assess approaches to sample return with only one Earth launch. While the objective of the study was specifically for sample-return, in-situ missions can also benefit from using many of the technologies examined.

  2. A Significant Role of the Truncated Ghrelin Receptor GHS-R1b in Ghrelin-induced Signaling in Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarro, Gemma; Aguinaga, David; Angelats, Edgar; Medrano, Mireia; Moreno, Estefanía; Mallol, Josefa; Cortés, Antonio; Canela, Enric I; Casadó, Vicent; McCormick, Peter J; Lluís, Carme; Ferré, Sergi

    2016-06-17

    The truncated non-signaling ghrelin receptor growth hormone secretagogue R1b (GHS-R1b) has been suggested to simply exert a dominant negative role in the trafficking and signaling of the full and functional ghrelin receptor GHS-R1a. Here we reveal a more complex modulatory role of GHS-R1b. Differential co-expression of GHS-R1a and GHS-R1b, both in HEK-293T cells and in striatal and hippocampal neurons in culture, demonstrates that GHS-R1b acts as a dual modulator of GHS-R1a function: low relative GHS-R1b expression potentiates and high relative GHS-R1b expression inhibits GHS-R1a function by facilitating GHS-R1a trafficking to the plasma membrane and by exerting a negative allosteric effect on GHS-R1a signaling, respectively. We found a preferential Gi/o coupling of the GHS-R1a-GHS-R1b complex in HEK-293T cells and, unexpectedly, a preferential Gs/olf coupling in both striatal and hippocampal neurons in culture. A dopamine D1 receptor (D1R) antagonist blocked ghrelin-induced cAMP accumulation in striatal but not hippocampal neurons, indicating the involvement of D1R in the striatal GHS-R1a-Gs/olf coupling. Experiments in HEK-293T cells demonstrated that D1R co-expression promotes a switch in GHS-R1a-G protein coupling from Gi/o to Gs/olf, but only upon co-expression of GHS-R1b. Furthermore, resonance energy transfer experiments showed that D1R interacts with GHS-R1a, but only in the presence of GHS-R1b. Therefore, GHS-R1b not only determines the efficacy of ghrelin-induced GHS-R1a-mediated signaling but also determines the ability of GHS-R1a to form oligomeric complexes with other receptors, promoting profound qualitative changes in ghrelin-induced signaling. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  3. A Significant Role of the Truncated Ghrelin Receptor GHS-R1b in Ghrelin-induced Signaling in Neurons*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarro, Gemma; Aguinaga, David; Angelats, Edgar; Medrano, Mireia; Moreno, Estefanía; Mallol, Josefa; Cortés, Antonio; Canela, Enric I.; Casadó, Vicent; McCormick, Peter J.; Lluís, Carme; Ferré, Sergi

    2016-01-01

    The truncated non-signaling ghrelin receptor growth hormone secretagogue R1b (GHS-R1b) has been suggested to simply exert a dominant negative role in the trafficking and signaling of the full and functional ghrelin receptor GHS-R1a. Here we reveal a more complex modulatory role of GHS-R1b. Differential co-expression of GHS-R1a and GHS-R1b, both in HEK-293T cells and in striatal and hippocampal neurons in culture, demonstrates that GHS-R1b acts as a dual modulator of GHS-R1a function: low relative GHS-R1b expression potentiates and high relative GHS-R1b expression inhibits GHS-R1a function by facilitating GHS-R1a trafficking to the plasma membrane and by exerting a negative allosteric effect on GHS-R1a signaling, respectively. We found a preferential Gi/o coupling of the GHS-R1a-GHS-R1b complex in HEK-293T cells and, unexpectedly, a preferential Gs/olf coupling in both striatal and hippocampal neurons in culture. A dopamine D1 receptor (D1R) antagonist blocked ghrelin-induced cAMP accumulation in striatal but not hippocampal neurons, indicating the involvement of D1R in the striatal GHS-R1a-Gs/olf coupling. Experiments in HEK-293T cells demonstrated that D1R co-expression promotes a switch in GHS-R1a-G protein coupling from Gi/o to Gs/olf, but only upon co-expression of GHS-R1b. Furthermore, resonance energy transfer experiments showed that D1R interacts with GHS-R1a, but only in the presence of GHS-R1b. Therefore, GHS-R1b not only determines the efficacy of ghrelin-induced GHS-R1a-mediated signaling but also determines the ability of GHS-R1a to form oligomeric complexes with other receptors, promoting profound qualitative changes in ghrelin-induced signaling. PMID:27129257

  4. Combined analysis of cortical (EEG) and nerve stump signals improves robotic hand control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tombini, Mario; Rigosa, Jacopo; Zappasodi, Filippo; Porcaro, Camillo; Citi, Luca; Carpaneto, Jacopo; Rossini, Paolo Maria; Micera, Silvestro

    2012-01-01

    Interfacing an amputee's upper-extremity stump nerves to control a robotic hand requires training of the individual and algorithms to process interactions between cortical and peripheral signals. To evaluate for the first time whether EEG-driven analysis of peripheral neural signals as an amputee practices could improve the classification of motor commands. Four thin-film longitudinal intrafascicular electrodes (tf-LIFEs-4) were implanted in the median and ulnar nerves of the stump in the distal upper arm for 4 weeks. Artificial intelligence classifiers were implemented to analyze LIFE signals recorded while the participant tried to perform 3 different hand and finger movements as pictures representing these tasks were randomly presented on a screen. In the final week, the participant was trained to perform the same movements with a robotic hand prosthesis through modulation of tf-LIFE-4 signals. To improve the classification performance, an event-related desynchronization/synchronization (ERD/ERS) procedure was applied to EEG data to identify the exact timing of each motor command. Real-time control of neural (motor) output was achieved by the participant. By focusing electroneurographic (ENG) signal analysis in an EEG-driven time window, movement classification performance improved. After training, the participant regained normal modulation of background rhythms for movement preparation (α/β band desynchronization) in the sensorimotor area contralateral to the missing limb. Moreover, coherence analysis found a restored α band synchronization of Rolandic area with frontal and parietal ipsilateral regions, similar to that observed in the opposite hemisphere for movement of the intact hand. Of note, phantom limb pain (PLP) resolved for several months. Combining information from both cortical (EEG) and stump nerve (ENG) signals improved the classification performance compared with tf-LIFE signals processing alone; training led to cortical reorganization and

  5. Reducing dysfunctional beliefs about sleep does not significantly improve insomnia in cognitive behavioral therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okajima, Isa; Nakajima, Shun; Ochi, Moeko; Inoue, Yuichi

    2014-01-01

    The present study examined to examine whether improvement of insomnia is mediated by a reduction in sleep-related dysfunctional beliefs through cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia. In total, 64 patients with chronic insomnia received cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia consisting of 6 biweekly individual treatment sessions of 50 minutes in length. Participants were asked to complete the Athens Insomnia Scale and the Dysfunctional Beliefs and Attitudes about Sleep scale both at the baseline and at the end of treatment. The results showed that although cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia greatly reduced individuals' scores on both scales, the decrease in dysfunctional beliefs and attitudes about sleep with treatment did not seem to mediate improvement in insomnia. The findings suggest that sleep-related dysfunctional beliefs endorsed by patients with chronic insomnia may be attenuated by cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia, but changes in such beliefs are not likely to play a crucial role in reducing the severity of insomnia.

  6. Reducing Dysfunctional Beliefs about Sleep Does Not Significantly Improve Insomnia in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

    OpenAIRE

    Okajima, Isa; Nakajima, Shun; Ochi, Moeko; Inoue, Yuichi

    2014-01-01

    The present study examined to examine whether improvement of insomnia is mediated by a reduction in sleep-related dysfunctional beliefs through cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia. In total, 64 patients with chronic insomnia received cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia consisting of 6 biweekly individual treatment sessions of 50 minutes in length. Participants were asked to complete the Athens Insomnia Scale and the Dysfunctional Beliefs and Attitudes about Sleep scale both at the...

  7. Significant performance improvement obtained in a wireless mesh network using a beamswitching antenna

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Lysko, AA

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available mesh network operated in a fixed 11 Mbps mode. The throughput improvement in multi-hop communication obtained in the presence of an interferer is tenfold, from 0.2 Mbps to 2 Mbps. Index Terms?antenna, smart antenna, wireless mesh network, WMN... efficiency in the communications, and active research and development of new methods and technologies enabling this at the physical layer, including multiple antenna techniques, such as multiple input multiple output (MIMO) and smart antennas...

  8. Application of time-resolved glucose concentration photoacoustic signals based on an improved wavelet denoising

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Zhong; Liu, Guodong; Huang, Zhen

    2014-10-01

    Real-time monitoring of blood glucose concentration (BGC) is a great important procedure in controlling diabetes mellitus and preventing the complication for diabetic patients. Noninvasive measurement of BGC has already become a research hotspot because it can overcome the physical and psychological harm. Photoacoustic spectroscopy is a well-established, hybrid and alternative technique used to determine the BGC. According to the theory of photoacoustic technique, the blood is irradiated by plused laser with nano-second repeation time and micro-joule power, the photoacoustic singals contained the information of BGC are generated due to the thermal-elastic mechanism, then the BGC level can be interpreted from photoacoustic signal via the data analysis. But in practice, the time-resolved photoacoustic signals of BGC are polluted by the varities of noises, e.g., the interference of background sounds and multi-component of blood. The quality of photoacoustic signal of BGC directly impacts the precision of BGC measurement. So, an improved wavelet denoising method was proposed to eliminate the noises contained in BGC photoacoustic signals. To overcome the shortcoming of traditional wavelet threshold denoising, an improved dual-threshold wavelet function was proposed in this paper. Simulation experimental results illustrated that the denoising result of this improved wavelet method was better than that of traditional soft and hard threshold function. To varify the feasibility of this improved function, the actual photoacoustic BGC signals were test, the test reslut demonstrated that the signal-to-noises ratio(SNR) of the improved function increases about 40-80%, and its root-mean-square error (RMSE) decreases about 38.7-52.8%.

  9. Research on the Wire Network Signal Prediction Based on the Improved NNARX Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zipeng; Fan, Tao; Wang, Shuqing

    It is difficult to obtain accurately the wire net signal of power system's high voltage power transmission lines in the process of monitoring and repairing. In order to solve this problem, the signal measured in remote substation or laboratory is employed to make multipoint prediction to gain the needed data. But, the obtained power grid frequency signal is delay. In order to solve the problem, an improved NNARX network which can predict frequency signal based on multi-point data collected by remote substation PMU is describes in this paper. As the error curved surface of the NNARX network is more complicated, this paper uses L-M algorithm to train the network. The result of the simulation shows that the NNARX network has preferable predication performance which provides accurate real time data for field testing and maintenance.

  10. Intraoperative Sensorcaine significantly improves postoperative pain management in outpatient reduction mammaplasty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culliford, Alfred T; Spector, Jason A; Flores, Roberto L; Louie, Otway; Choi, Mihye; Karp, Nolan S

    2007-09-15

    Breast reduction is one of the most frequently performed plastic surgical procedures in the United States; more than 160,500 patients underwent the procedure in 2005. Many outpatient reduction mammaplasty patients report the greatest postoperative discomfort in the first 48 hours. The authors' investigated the effect of intraoperative topical application of the long-acting local anesthetic agent bupivacaine (Sensorcaine or Marcaine) on postoperative pain, time to postanesthesia care unit discharge, and postoperative use of narcotic medication. In a prospective, randomized, single-blind trial, intraoperative use of Sensorcaine versus placebo (normal saline) was compared. Postoperative pain was quantified using the visual analogue scale, and time to discharge from the postanesthesia care unit was recorded. Patients documented their outpatient pain medication usage. Of the 37 patients enrolled in the study, 20 were treated with intraoperative topical Sensorcaine and 17 received placebo. Patients treated with Sensorcaine were discharged home significantly faster (2.9 hours versus 3.8 hours, p = 0.002). The control arm consistently had higher pain scores in the postanesthesia care unit (although not statistically significant) than the Sensorcaine group using the visual analogue scale system. Furthermore, patients receiving Sensorcaine required significantly less narcotic medication while recovering at home (mean, 3.5 tablets of Vicodin) than the control group (mean, 6.4 tablets; p = 0.001). There were no complications resulting from Sensorcaine usage. This prospective, randomized, single-blind study demonstrates that a single dose of intraoperative Sensorcaine provides a safe, inexpensive, and efficacious way to significantly shorten the length of postanesthesia care unit stay and significantly decrease postoperative opioid analgesic use in patients undergoing ambulatory reduction mammaplasty.

  11. Significant Improvements in Pyranometer Nighttime Offsets Using High-Flow DC Ventilation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kutchenreiter, Mark; Michalski, J.J.; Long, C.N.; Habte, Aron

    2017-05-22

    Accurate solar radiation measurements using pyranometers are required to understand radiative impacts on the Earth's energy budget, solar energy production, and to validate radiative transfer models. Ventilators of pyranometers, which are used to keep the domes clean and dry, also affect instrument thermal offset accuracy. This poster presents a high-level overview of the ventilators for single-black-detector pyranometers and black-and-white pyranometers. For single-black-detector pyranometers with ventilators, high-flow-rate (50-CFM and higher), 12-V DC fans lower the offsets, lower the scatter, and improve the predictability of nighttime offsets compared to lower-flow-rate (35-CFM), 120-V AC fans operated in the same type of environmental setup. Black-and-white pyranometers, which are used to measure diffuse horizontal irradiance, sometimes show minor improvement with DC fan ventilation, but their offsets are always small, usually no more than 1 W/m2, whether AC- or DC-ventilated.

  12. Nitrite addition to acidified sludge significantly improves digestibility, toxic metal removal, dewaterability and pathogen reduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Fangzhou; Keller, Jürg; Yuan, Zhiguo; Batstone, Damien J.; Freguia, Stefano; Pikaar, Ilje

    2016-12-01

    Sludge management is a major issue for water utilities globally. Poor digestibility and dewaterability are the main factors determining the cost for sludge management, whereas pathogen and toxic metal concentrations limit beneficial reuse. In this study, the effects of low level nitrite addition to acidified sludge to simultaneously enhance digestibility, toxic metal removal, dewaterability and pathogen reduction were investigated. Waste activated sludge (WAS) from a full-scale waste water treatment plant was treated at pH 2 with 10 mg NO2--N/L for 5 h. Biochemical methane potential tests showed an increase in the methane production of 28%, corresponding to an improvement from 247 ± 8 L CH4/kg VS to 317 ± 1 L CH4/kg VS. The enhanced removal of toxic metals further increased the methane production by another 18% to 360 ± 6 L CH4/kg VS (a total increase of 46%). The solids content of dewatered sludge increased from 14.6 ± 1.4% in the control to 18.2 ± 0.8%. A 4-log reduction for both total coliforms and E. coli was achieved. Overall, this study highlights the potential of acidification with low level nitrite addition as an effective and simple method achieving multiple improvements in terms of sludge management.

  13. Efficiency improvement of nuclear power plant operation: the significant role of advanced nuclear fuel technologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Velde Van de, A.; Burtak, F.

    2001-01-01

    Due to the increased liberalisation of the power markets, nuclear power generation is being exposed to high cost reduction pressure. In this paper we highlight the role of advanced nuclear fuel technologies to reduce the fuel cycle costs and therefore increase the efficiency of nuclear power plant operation. The key factor is a more efficient utilisation of the fuel and present developments at Siemens are consequently directed at (i) further increase of batch average burnup, (ii) improvement of fuel reliability, (iii) enlargement of fuel operation margins and (iv) improvement of methods for fuel design and core analysis. As a result, the nuclear fuel cycle costs for a typical LWR have been reduced during the past decades by about US$ 35 million per year. The estimated impact of further burnup increases on the fuel cycle costs is expected to be an additional saving of US$10 - 15 million per year. Due to the fact that the fuel will operate closer to design limits, a careful approach is required when introducing advanced fuel features in reload quantities. Trust and co-operation between the fuel vendors and the utilities is a prerequisite for the common success. (authors)

  14. Significant improvement of mouse cloning technique by treatment with trichostatin A after somatic nuclear transfer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kishigami, Satoshi; Mizutani, Eiji; Ohta, Hiroshi; Hikichi, Takafusa; Thuan, Nguyen Van; Wakayama, Sayaka; Bui, Hong-Thuy; Wakayama, Teruhiko

    2006-01-01

    The low success rate of animal cloning by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) is believed to be associated with epigenetic errors including abnormal DNA hypermethylation. Recently, we elucidated by using round spermatids that, after nuclear transfer, treatment of zygotes with trichostatin A (TSA), an inhibitor of histone deacetylase, can remarkably reduce abnormal DNA hypermethylation depending on the origins of transferred nuclei and their genomic regions [S. Kishigami, N. Van Thuan, T. Hikichi, H. Ohta, S. Wakayama. E. Mizutani, T. Wakayama, Epigenetic abnormalities of the mouse paternal zygotic genome associated with microinsemination of round spermatids, Dev. Biol. (2005) in press]. Here, we found that 5-50 nM TSA-treatment for 10 h following oocyte activation resulted in more efficient in vitro development of somatic cloned embryos to the blastocyst stage from 2- to 5-fold depending on the donor cells including tail tip cells, spleen cells, neural stem cells, and cumulus cells. This TSA-treatment also led to more than 5-fold increase in success rate of mouse cloning from cumulus cells without obvious abnormality but failed to improve ES cloning success. Further, we succeeded in establishment of nuclear transfer-embryonic stem (NT-ES) cells from TSA-treated cloned blastocyst at a rate three times higher than those from untreated cloned blastocysts. Thus, our data indicate that TSA-treatment after SCNT in mice can dramatically improve the practical application of current cloning techniques

  15. The Reparative Abilities of Menstrual Stem Cells Modulate the Wound Matrix Signals and Improve Cutaneous Regeneration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jimena Cuenca

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Considerable advances have been made toward understanding the cellular and molecular mechanism of wound healing, however, treatments for chronic wounds remain elusive. Emerging concepts utilizing mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs from umbilical cord, adipose tissue and bone marrow have shown therapeutical advantages for wound healing. Based on this positive outcome, efforts to determine the optimal sources for MSCs are required in order to improve their migratory, angiogenic, immunomodulatory, and reparative abilities. An alternative source suitable for repetitive, non-invasive collection of MSCs is from the menstrual fluid (MenSCs, displaying a major practical advantage over other sources. This study aims to compare the biological functions and the transcriptomic pattern of MenSCs with umbilical cord MSCs in conditions resembling the wound microenvironment. Consequently, we correlate the specific gene expression signature from MenSCs with changes of the wound matrix signals in vivo. The direct comparison revealed a superior clonogenic and migratory potential of MenSCs as well as a beneficial effect of their secretome on human dermal fibroblast migration in vitro. Furthermore, MenSCs showed increased immunomodulatory properties, inhibiting T-cell proliferation in co-culture. We further, investigated the expression of selected genes involved in wound repair (growth factors, cytokines, chemokines, AMPs, MMPs and found considerably higher expression levels in MenSCs (ANGPT1 1.5-fold; PDGFA 1.8-fold; PDGFB 791-fold; MMP3 21.6-fold; ELN 13.4-fold; and MMP10 9.2-fold. This difference became more pronounced under a pro-inflammatory stimulation, resembling wound bed conditions. Locally applied in a murine excisional wound splinting model, MenSCs showed a significantly improved wound closure after 14 days, as well as enhanced neovascularization, compared to the untreated group. Interestingly, analysis of excised wound tissue revealed a significantly higher

  16. The Improvement of Screening the Significant Factors of Oil Blends as Bio lubricant Base Stock

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Noor Hajarul Ashikin Shamsuddin; Rozaini Abdullah; Zainab Hamzah; Siti Jamilah Hanim Mohd Yusof

    2015-01-01

    A new formulation bio lubricant base stock was developed by blending of waste cooking oil (WCO) with Jatropha curcas oil (JCO). The objective of this research is to evaluate significant factors contributing to the production of oil blends for bio lubricant application. The significant factors used in this study were oil ratio (WCO:JCO), agitation times (min) and agitation speed (rpm). The blended oil bio based lubricant was used to determine the saponification, acid, peroxide and iodine values. The experimental design used in this study was the 2 level-factorial design. In this experiment, it was found that the effect of oil ratio and interaction of oil ratio and agitation speed gave the most significant effect in oil blends as bio lubricant base stock. The highest ratio of oil blend 80 %:20 % WCO:JCO, with low agitation speed of 300 rpm and low agitation time of 30 minutes gave the optimum results. The acid, saponification, peroxide and iodine values obtained were 0.517±0.08 mg KOH/ g, 126.23±1.62 mg/ g, 7.5±2.0 m eq/ kg and 50.42±2.85 mg/ g respectively. A higher ratio of waste cooking oil blends was found to be favourable as bio lubricant base stock. (author)

  17. Autonomic nervous system dynamics for mood and emotional-state recognition significant advances in data acquisition, signal processing and classification

    CERN Document Server

    Valenza, Gaetano

    2014-01-01

    This monograph reports on advances in the measurement and study of autonomic nervous system (ANS) dynamics as a source of reliable and effective markers for mood state recognition and assessment of emotional responses. Its primary impact will be in affective computing and the application of emotion-recognition systems. Applicative studies of biosignals such as: electrocardiograms; electrodermal responses; respiration activity; gaze points; and pupil-size variation are covered in detail, and experimental results explain how to characterize the elicited affective levels and mood states pragmatically and accurately using the information thus extracted from the ANS. Nonlinear signal processing techniques play a crucial role in understanding the ANS physiology underlying superficially noticeable changes and provide important quantifiers of cardiovascular control dynamics. These have prognostic value in both healthy subjects and patients with mood disorders. Moreover, Autonomic Nervous System Dynamics for Mood and ...

  18. EASE-Grid 2.0: Incremental but Significant Improvements for Earth-Gridded Data Sets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew H. Savoie

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Defined in the early 1990s for use with gridded satellite passive microwave data, the Equal-Area Scalable Earth Grid (EASE-Grid was quickly adopted and used for distribution of a variety of satellite and in situ data sets. Conceptually easy to understand, EASE-Grid suffers from limitations that make it impossible to format in the widely popular GeoTIFF convention without reprojection. Importing EASE-Grid data into standard mapping software packages is nontrivial and error-prone. This article defines a standard for an improved EASE-Grid 2.0 definition, addressing how the changes rectify issues with the original grid definition. Data distributed using the EASE-Grid 2.0 standard will be easier for users to import into standard software packages and will minimize common reprojection errors that users had encountered with the original EASE-Grid definition.

  19. A patient/family-centered strategic plan can drive significant improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brilli, Richard J; Crandall, Wallace V; Berry, Janet C; Stoverock, Linda; Rosen, Kerry; Budin, Lee; Kelleher, Kelly J; Gleeson, Sean P; Davis, J Terrance

    2014-08-01

    The use of a PFCSP, as a road map to operationalize the hospital's vision, has been a compelling paradigm to achieve significant QI results. The framework is simple yet directly aligns with the IOM domains of quality. It has inspired and helped actively engage hospital personnel in the work required to achieve the goals and vision of the hospital system. Five years after initiating this type of plan, activity is flourishing in each of the domains and midterm results are substantial. We think that the nature of this strategic plan has been an important aspect of our success to date.

  20. An integrated PRA module for fast determination of risk significance and improvement effectiveness

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chao, Chun-Chang; Lin, Jyh-Der

    2004-01-01

    With the widely use of PRA technology in risk-informed applications, to predict the changes of CDF and LERF becomes a standard process for risk-informed applications. This paper describes an integrated PRA module prepared for risk-informed applications. The module contains a super risk engine, a super fault tree engine, an advanced PRA model and a tool for data base maintenance. The individual element of the module also works well for purpose other than risk-informed applications. The module has been verified and validated through a series of scrupulous benchmark tests with similar software. The results of the benchmark tests showed that the module has remarkable accuracy and speed even for an extremely large-size top-logic fault tree as well as for the case in which large amount of MCSs may be generated. The risk monitor for nuclear power plants in Taiwan is the first application to adopt the module. The results predicted by the risk monitor are now accepted by the regulatory agency. A tool to determine the risk significance according to the inspection findings will be the next application to adopt the module in the near future. This tool classified the risk significance into four different color codes according to the level of increase on CDF. Experience of application showed that the flexibility, the accuracy and speed of the module make it useful in any risk-informed applications when risk indexes must be determined by resolving a PRA model. (author)

  1. Inulin significantly improves serum magnesium levels in proton pump inhibitor-induced hypomagnesaemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hess, M W; de Baaij, J H F; Broekman, M; Bisseling, T M; Haarhuis, B; Tan, A; Te Morsche, R; Hoenderop, J G J; Bindels, R J M; Drenth, J P H

    2016-06-01

    Proton pump inhibitors (PPI) are among the most widely prescribed drugs to treat gastric acid-related disorders. PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia, a defect in intestinal absorption of Mg(2+) , can be a severe side effect of chronic PPI use. To restore serum Mg(2+) concentrations in PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia patients by dietary supplementation with inulin fibres. Eleven patients with PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia and 10 controls were treated with inulin (20 g/day). Each trial consisted of two cycles of 14-day inulin treatment followed by a washout period of 14 days. Patients continued to use their PPI. Serum Mg(2+) levels served as the primary endpoint. Inulin significantly enhanced serum Mg(2+) levels from 0.60 to 0.68 mmol/L in PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia patients, and from 0.84 to 0.93 mmol/L in controls. As a consequence 24 h urinary Mg(2+) excretion was significantly increased in patients with PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia (0.3-2.2 mmol/day). Symptoms related to hypomagnesaemia, including muscle cramps and paraesthesia, were reduced during intervention with inulin. Inulin increases serum Mg(2+) concentrations under PPI maintenance in patients with PPI-induced hypomagnesaemia. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  2. An improved method based on wavelet coefficient correlation to filter noise in Doppler ultrasound blood flow signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan, Renzhi; Zu, Yunxiao; Shao, Lin

    2018-04-01

    The blood echo signal maintained through Medical ultrasound Doppler devices would always include vascular wall pulsation signal .The traditional method to de-noise wall signal is using high-pass filter, which will also remove the lowfrequency part of the blood flow signal. Some scholars put forward a method based on region selective reduction, which at first estimates of the wall pulsation signals and then removes the wall signal from the mixed signal. Apparently, this method uses the correlation between wavelet coefficients to distinguish blood signal from wall signal, but in fact it is a kind of wavelet threshold de-noising method, whose effect is not so much ideal. In order to maintain a better effect, this paper proposes an improved method based on wavelet coefficient correlation to separate blood signal and wall signal, and simulates the algorithm by computer to verify its validity.

  3. Progressive degradation of alloy 690 and the development of a significant improvement in alloy 800CR

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Staehle, Roger W.; Arioka, Koji; Tapping, Robert

    2015-01-01

    The present most widely used alloys for tubing in steam generators and structural materials in water cooled reactors are Alloy 690 and Alloy 800. However, both alloys, while improved over Alloy 600 may not meet the needs of longer range applications in the range of 80-100 years. Alloy 690 sustains damage resulting from the formation of cavities at grain boundaries which eventually cover about 50% of the area of the grain boundaries with the remainder covering being covered with carbides. The cavities seem to nucleate on the carbides leaving the grain boundaries a structure of cavities and carbides. Such a structure will lead the Alloy 690 to fail completely. Normal Alloy 800 does not produce such cavities and probably retains a large amount of its corrosion resistance but does sustain progressive SCC at low rate. A new alloy, 800CR, has been developed in a collaboration among Arioka, Tapping, and Staehle. This alloy is based on a Cr composition of 23.5-27% with the remainder retaining the previous Alloy 800 composition. 800CR sustains a crack velocity about 100 times less than Alloy 690 and a negligible rate of initiation. The 800CR, alloy is now seeking a patent. (authors)

  4. Significant improvements of electrical discharge machining performance by step-by-step updated adaptive control laws

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Ming; Wu, Jianyang; Xu, Xiaoyi; Mu, Xin; Dou, Yunping

    2018-02-01

    In order to obtain improved electrical discharge machining (EDM) performance, we have dedicated more than a decade to correcting one essential EDM defect, the weak stability of the machining, by developing adaptive control systems. The instabilities of machining are mainly caused by complicated disturbances in discharging. To counteract the effects from the disturbances on machining, we theoretically developed three control laws from minimum variance (MV) control law to minimum variance and pole placements coupled (MVPPC) control law and then to a two-step-ahead prediction (TP) control law. Based on real-time estimation of EDM process model parameters and measured ratio of arcing pulses which is also called gap state, electrode discharging cycle was directly and adaptively tuned so that a stable machining could be achieved. To this end, we not only theoretically provide three proved control laws for a developed EDM adaptive control system, but also practically proved the TP control law to be the best in dealing with machining instability and machining efficiency though the MVPPC control law provided much better EDM performance than the MV control law. It was also shown that the TP control law also provided a burn free machining.

  5. On the improvement of signal repeatability in laser-induced air plasmas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Shuai; Sheta, Sahar; Hou, Zong-Yu; Wang, Zhe

    2018-04-01

    The relatively low repeatability of laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) severely hinders its wide commercialization. In the present work, we investigate the optimization of LIBS system for repeatability improvement for both signal generation (plasma evolution) and signal collection. Timeintegrated spectra and images were obtained under different laser energies and focal lengths to investigate the optimum configuration for stable plasmas and repeatable signals. Using our experimental setup, the optimum conditions were found to be a laser energy of 250 mJ and a focus length of 100 mm. A stable and homogeneous plasma with the largest hot core area in the optimum condition yielded the most stable LIBS signal. Time-resolved images showed that the rebounding processes through the air plasma evolution caused the relative standard deviation (RSD) to increase with laser energies of > 250 mJ. In addition, the emission collection was improved by using a concave spherical mirror. The line intensities doubled as their RSDs decreased by approximately 25%. When the signal generation and collection were optimized simultaneously, the pulse-to-pulse RSDs were reduced to approximately 3% for O(I), N(I), and H(I) lines, which are better than the RSDs reported for solid samples and showed great potential for LIBS quantitative analysis by gasifying the solid or liquid samples.

  6. Significant improvement of pig cloning efficiency by treatment with LBH589 after somatic cell nuclear transfer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Jun-Xue; Li, Suo; Gao, Qing-Shan; Hong, Yu; Jin, Long; Zhu, Hai-Ying; Yan, Chang-Guo; Kang, Jin-Dan; Yin, Xi-Jun

    2013-10-01

    The low success rate of animal cloning by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) associates with epigenetic aberrancy, including the abnormal acetylation of histones. Altering the epigenetic status by histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACi) enhances the developmental potential of SCNT embryos. In the current study, we examined the effects of LBH589 (panobinostat), a novel broad-spectrum HDACi, on the nuclear reprogramming and development of pig SCNT embryos in vitro. In experiment 1, we compared the in vitro developmental competence of nuclear transfer embryos treated with different concentrations of LBH589. Embryos treated with 50 nM LBH589 for 24 hours showed a significant increase in the rate of blastocyst formation compared with the control or embryos treated with 5 or 500 nM LBH589 (32.4% vs. 11.8%, 12.1%, and 10.0%, respectively, P < 0.05). In experiment 2, we examined the in vitro developmental competence of nuclear transfer embryos treated with 50 nM LBH589 for various intervals after activation and 6-dimethylaminopurine. Embryos treated for 24 hours had higher rates of blastocyst formation than the other groups. In experiment 3, when the acetylation of H4K12 was examined in SCNT embryos treated for 6 hours with 50 nM LBH589 by immunohistochemistry, the staining intensities of these proteins in LBH589-treated SCNT embryos were significantly higher than in the control. In experiment 4, LBH589-treated nuclear transfer and control embryos were transferred into surrogate mothers, resulting in three (100%) and two (66.7%) pregnancies, respectively. In conclusion, LBH589 enhances the nuclear reprogramming and developmental potential of SCNT embryos by altering the epigenetic status and expression, and increasing blastocyst quality. Crown Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Improved Protein Arrays for Quantitative Systems Analysis of the Dynamics of Signaling Pathway Interactions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Chin-Rang [National Inst. of Health (NIH), Bethesda, MD (United States). National Heart, Lung and Blood Inst.

    2013-12-11

    Astronauts and workers in nuclear plants who repeatedly exposed to low doses of ionizing radiation (IR, <10 cGy) are likely to incur specific changes in signal transduction and gene expression in various tissues of their body. Remarkable advances in high throughput genomics and proteomics technologies enable researchers to broaden their focus from examining single gene/protein kinetics to better understanding global gene/protein expression profiling and biological pathway analyses, namely Systems Biology. An ultimate goal of systems biology is to develop dynamic mathematical models of interacting biological systems capable of simulating living systems in a computer. This Glue Grant is to complement Dr. Boothman’s existing DOE grant (No. DE-FG02-06ER64186) entitled “The IGF1/IGF-1R-MAPK-Secretory Clusterin (sCLU) Pathway: Mediator of a Low Dose IR-Inducible Bystander Effect” to develop sensitive and quantitative proteomic technology that suitable for low dose radiobiology researches. An improved version of quantitative protein array platform utilizing linear Quantum dot signaling for systematically measuring protein levels and phosphorylation states for systems biology modeling is presented. The signals are amplified by a confocal laser Quantum dot scanner resulting in ~1000-fold more sensitivity than traditional Western blots and show the good linearity that is impossible for the signals of HRP-amplification. Therefore this improved protein array technology is suitable to detect weak responses of low dose radiation. Software is developed to facilitate the quantitative readout of signaling network activities. Kinetics of EGFRvIII mutant signaling was analyzed to quantify cross-talks between EGFR and other signaling pathways.

  8. Improved real-time dosimetry using the radioluminescence signal from Al2O3:C

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Damkjaer, S.M.S.; Andersen, C.E.; Aznar, M.C.

    2008-01-01

    Carbon-doped aluminum oxide (Al 2 O 3 :C) is a highly sensitive luminescence material for ionizing radiation dosimetry, and it is well established that the optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) signal from Al 2 O 3 :C can be used for absorbed-dose measurements. During irradiation, Al 2 O 3 :C also emits prompt radioluminescence (RL) which allows for real-time dose verification. The RL-signal is not linear in the absorbed dose due to sensitivity changes and the presence of shallow traps. Despite this the signal can be processed to obtain a reliable dose rate signal in real time. Previously a simple algorithm for correcting the RL-signal has been published and here we report two improvements: a better and more stable calibration method which is independent of a reference dose rate and a correction for the effect of the shallow traps. Good agreement was found between reference doses and doses derived from the RL-signal using the new algorithm (the standard deviation of the residuals were ∼2% including phantom positioning errors). The RL-algorithm was found to greatly reduce the influence of shallow traps in the range from 0 to 3 Gy and the RL dose-rate measurements with a time resolution of 0.1 s closely matched dose-rate changes monitored with an ionization chamber

  9. Silver chlorobromide nanocubes with significantly improved uniformity: synthesis and assembly into photonic crystals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Zheng; Okasinski, John S.; Gosztola, David J.; Ren, Yang; Sun, Yugang

    2015-01-01

    Silver chlorobromide (AgClxBr1-x, 0 < x < 1) nanocubes with a highly uniform size, morphology, and crystallinity have been successfully synthesized through a co-precipitation of Ag+ ions with both Cl- and Br- ions in ethylene glycol containing polyvinyl pyrrolidone at mild temperatures. Compositions of the synthesized nanocubes can be easily tuned by controlling the molar ratio of Cl- to Br- ions in the reaction solutions. The size of the nanocubes is determined by varying a number of parameters including the molar ratio of Cl- to Br- ions, injection rate of Ag+ ions, and reaction temperature. The real-time formation of colloidal AgClxBr1-x nanocubes has been monitored, for the first time, by in situ highenergy synchrotron X-ray diffraction. The time-resolved results reveal that a fast injection rate of Ag+ ions is critical for the formation of AgClxBr1-x nanocubes with a highly pure face-centered cubic crystalline phase. The improved uniformity of the AgClxBr1-x nanocubes is beneficial for assembling them into order superlattices (e.g., photonic crystals) even by simply applying centrifugation forces. The stop band of the resulting photonic crystals can be easily tuned from the ultraviolet to the infrared region by using AgClxBr1-x nanocubes with different sizes. The variation of the dielectric constant of AgClxBr1-x associated with the change of the relative concentration of halide ions provides an additional knob to tune the optical properties of photonic crystals.

  10. Improved MIMO radar GMTI via cyclic-shift transmission of orthogonal frequency division signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Fuyou; He, Feng; Dong, Zhen; Wu, Manqing

    2018-05-01

    Minimum detectable velocity (MDV) and maximum detectable velocity are both important in ground moving target indication (GMTI) systems. Smaller MDV can be achieved by longer baseline via multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) radar. Maximum detectable velocity is decided by blind velocities associated with carrier frequencies, and blind velocities can be mitigated by orthogonal frequency division signals. However, the scattering echoes from different carrier frequencies are independent, which is not good for improving MDV performance. An improved cyclic-shift transmission is applied in MIMO GMTI system in this paper. MDV performance is improved due to the longer baseline, and maximum detectable velocity performance is improved due to the mitigation of blind velocities via multiple carrier frequencies. The signal model for this mode is established, the principle of mitigating blind velocities with orthogonal frequency division signals is presented; the performance of different MIMO GMTI waveforms is analysed; and the performance of different array configurations is analysed. Simulation results by space-time-frequency adaptive processing proves that our proposed method is a valid way to improve GMTI performance.

  11. Understanding nitrate uptake, signaling and remobilisation for improving plant nitrogen use efficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kant, Surya

    2018-02-01

    The majority of terrestrial plants use nitrate as their main source of nitrogen. Nitrate also acts as an important signalling molecule in vital physiological processes required for optimum plant growth and development. Improving nitrate uptake and transport, through activation by nitrate sensing, signalling and regulatory processes, would enhance plant growth, resulting in improved crop yields. The increased remobilisation of nitrate, and assimilated nitrogenous compounds, from source to sink tissues further ensures higher yields and quality. An updated knowledge of various transporters, genes, activators, and microRNAs, involved in nitrate uptake, transport, remobilisation, and nitrate-mediated root growth, is presented. An enhanced understanding of these components will allow for their orchestrated fine tuning in efforts to improving nitrogen use efficiency in plants. Crown Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. The Strasbourg Large Refractor and Dome: Significant Improvements and Failed Attempts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heck, Andre

    2009-01-01

    Founded by the German Empire in the late 19th century, Strasbourg Astronomical Observatory featured several novelties from the start. According to Mueller (1978), the separation of observing buildings from the study area and from the astronomers' residence was a revolution in observatory construction. The instruments were, as much as possible, isolated from the vibrations of the buildings themselves. "Gas flames" and water were used to reduce temperature effects. Thus the Large Dome (ca 11m diameter), housing the Large Refractor (ca 49cm, then the largest in Germany) and covered by zinc over wood, could be cooled down by water running from the top. Reports (including by the French who took over the observatory after World War I) are however somehow nonexistent on the effective usage and actual efficiency of such a system (which must have generated locally a significant amount of humidity). The paper will detail these technical attempts as well as the specificities of the instruments installed in that new observatory intended as a showcase of German astronomy.

  13. Improved delayed signal cancellation-based SRF-PLL for unbalanced grid

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Messo, Tuomas; Sihvo, Jussi; Yang, Dongsheng

    2017-01-01

    Problems with power quality in the grid have gained a lot of attention recently due to rapid increase in the amount of grid-connected power converters. The converter should produce sinusoidal currents also during abnormal conditions, such as unbalanced grid voltages. Several methods, like...... the delayed signal cancellation-based method (DSC), have been proposed to alleviate the detrimental effect of unbalance. This paper proposes an improvement to a delayed signal cancellation based synchronization algorithm for unbalanced grids. The proposed PLL structure employs only half of the delay required...

  14. Matrine pretreatment improves cardiac function in rats with diabetic cardiomyopathy via suppressing ROS/TLR-4 signaling pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zhong-wei; Wang, Jun-kui; Qiu, Chuan; Guan, Gong-chang; Liu, Xin-hong; Li, Shang-jian; Deng, Zheng-rong

    2015-03-01

    Matrine is an alkaloid from Sophora alopecuroides L, which has shown a variety of pharmacological activities and potential therapeutic value in cardiovascular diseases. In this study we examined the protective effects of matrine against diabetic cardiomyopathy (DCM) in rats. Male SD rats were injected with streptozotocin (STZ) to induce DCM. One group of DCM rats was pretreated with matrine (200 mg·kg(-1)·d(-1), po) for 10 consecutive days before STZ injection. Left ventricular function was evaluated using invasive hemodynamic examination, and myocardiac apoptosis was assessed. Primary rat myocytes were used for in vitro experiments. Intracellular ROS generation, MDA content and GPx activity were determined. Real-time PCR and Western blotting were performed to detect the expression of relevant mRNAs and proteins. DCM rats exhibited abnormally elevated non-fasting blood glucose levels at 4 weeks after STZ injection, and LV function impairment at 16 weeks. The cardiac tissues of DCM rats showed markedly increased apoptosis, excessive ROS production, and activation of TLR-4/MyD-88/caspase-8/caspase-3 signaling. Pretreatment with matrine significantly decreased non-fasting blood glucose levels and improved LV function in DCM rats, which were associated with reducing apoptosis and ROS production, and suppressing TLR-4/MyD-88/caspase-8/caspase-3 signaling in cardiac tissues. Incubation in a high-glucose medium induced oxidative stress and activation of TLR-4/MyD-88 signaling in cultured myocytes in vitro, which were significantly attenuated by pretreatment with N-acetylcysteine. Excessive ROS production in DCM activates the TLR-4/MyD-88 signaling, resulting in cardiomyocyte apoptosis, whereas pretreatment with matrine improves cardiac function via suppressing ROS/TLR-4 signaling pathway.

  15. Single-atom catalysts for CO2 electroreduction with significant activity and selectivity improvements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Back, Seoin; Lim, Juhyung; Kim, Na-Young; Kim, Yong-Hyun; Jung, Yousung

    2017-02-01

    A single-atom catalyst (SAC) has an electronic structure that is very different from its bulk counterparts, and has shown an unexpectedly high specific activity with a significant reduction in noble metal usage for CO oxidation, fuel cell and hydrogen evolution applications, although physical origins of such performance enhancements are still poorly understood. Herein, by means of density functional theory (DFT) calculations, we for the first time investigate the great potential of single atom catalysts for CO 2 electroreduction applications. In particular, we study a single transition metal atom anchored on defective graphene with single or double vacancies, denoted M@sv-Gr or M@dv-Gr, where M = Ag, Au, Co, Cu, Fe, Ir, Ni, Os, Pd, Pt, Rh or Ru, as a CO 2 reduction catalyst. Many SACs are indeed shown to be highly selective for the CO 2 reduction reaction over a competitive H 2 evolution reaction due to favorable adsorption of carboxyl (*COOH) or formate (*OCHO) over hydrogen (*H) on the catalysts. On the basis of free energy profiles, we identified several promising candidate materials for different products; Ni@dv-Gr (limiting potential U L = -0.41 V) and Pt@dv-Gr (-0.27 V) for CH 3 OH production, and Os@dv-Gr (-0.52 V) and Ru@dv-Gr (-0.52 V) for CH 4 production. In particular, the Pt@dv-Gr catalyst shows remarkable reduction in the limiting potential for CH 3 OH production compared to any existing catalysts, synthesized or predicted. To understand the origin of the activity enhancement of SACs, we find that the lack of an atomic ensemble for adsorbate binding and the unique electronic structure of the single atom catalysts as well as orbital interaction play an important role, contributing to binding energies of SACs that deviate considerably from the conventional scaling relation of bulk transition metals.

  16. Factors Related to Significant Improvement of Estimated Glomerular Filtration Rates in Chronic Hepatitis B Patients Receiving Telbivudine Therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Te-Fu Lin

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Background and Aim. The improvement of estimated glomerular filtration rates (eGFRs in chronic hepatitis B (CHB patients receiving telbivudine therapy is well known. The aim of this study was to clarify the kinetics of eGFRs and to identify the significant factors related to the improvement of eGFRs in telbivudine-treated CHB patients in a real-world setting. Methods. Serial eGFRs were calculated every 3 months using the Chronic Kidney Disease Epidemiology Collaboration (CKD-EPI equation. The patients were classified as CKD-1, -2, or -3 according to a baseline eGFR of ≥90, 60–89, or <60 mL/min/1.73 m2, respectively. A significant improvement of eGFR was defined as a more than 10% increase from the baseline. Results. A total of 129 patients were enrolled, of whom 36% had significantly improved eGFRs. According to a multivariate analysis, diabetes mellitus (DM (p=0.028 and CKD-3 (p=0.043 were both significantly related to such improvement. The rates of significant improvement of eGFR were about 73% and 77% in patients with DM and CKD-3, respectively. Conclusions. Telbivudine is an alternative drug of choice for the treatment of hepatitis B patients for whom renal safety is a concern, especially patients with DM and CKD-3.

  17. Expression and clinical significance of the HIF-1a/ET-2 signaling pathway during the development and treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fan; Zhang, Zhenghong; Wang, Zhaokai; Xiao, Kaizhuan; Wang, Qing; Su, Jingqian; Wang, Zhengchao

    2015-04-01

    Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a major health problem in reproductive-aged women worldwide, but the precise pathogenesis of PCOS remains unclear. Our previous study revealed that hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF)-1a mediated endothelin (ET)-2 signaling plays an important role in ovulation in rats. Therefore, the present study used a PCOS rat model to test the hypotheses that HIF-1a signaling is expressed and inhibited in ovaries during PCOS formation and that the HIF-1a/ET-2 signaling pathway is a target of dimethyldiguanide (DMBG) in the clinical treatment of PCOS. First, the development of a PCOS model and the effect of DMBG treatment were examined through ovarian histology and serum hormone levels, which were consistent with previous reports. Second, HIF-1a and ET-2 expression were detected by immunohistochemistry and western blot. The results showed decreased HIF-1a/ET-2 expression in the ovaries of PCOS rats, whereas DMBG treatment reversed the protein decreases and improved the PCOS symptoms. Third, to understand the molecular mechanism, HIF-1a/ET-2 mRNA expression was also examined. Interestingly, HIF-1a mRNA increased in the ovaries of PCOS rats, while ET-2 mRNA decreased, indicating that HIF-1a protein degradation may be involved in POCS development and treatment. Finally, HIF prolyl hydroxylase (PHD) activity was examined to further clarify the contribution of HIF-1a signaling to the development and treatment of PCOS. The results suggested that the inhibition of HIF-1a/ET-2 signaling may be caused by increased PHD activity in PCOS. DMBG-treated PCOS may further activate HIF-1a signaling at least partly through inhibiting PHD activity. Taken together, these results indicate that HIF-1a signaling is inhibited in a PCOS rat model through increasing PHD activity. DMBG treatment improved PCOS by rescuing this pathway, suggesting that HIF-1a signaling plays an important role in the development and treatment of PCOS. This HIF-1a-mediated ET-2 signaling pathway

  18. Omega-3 fatty acid therapy dose-dependently and significantly decreased triglycerides and improved flow-mediated dilation, however, did not significantly improve insulin sensitivity in patients with hypertriglyceridemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Pyung Chun; Koh, Kwang Kon; Sakuma, Ichiro; Lim, Soo; Lee, Yonghee; Lee, Seungik; Lee, Kyounghoon; Han, Seung Hwan; Shin, Eak Kyun

    2014-10-20

    Experimental studies demonstrate that higher intake of omega-3 fatty acids (n-3 FA) improves insulin sensitivity, however, we reported that n-3 FA 2g therapy, most commonly used dosage did not significantly improve insulin sensitivity despite reducing triglycerides by 21% in patients. Therefore, we investigated the effects of different dosages of n-3 FA in patients with hypertriglyceridemia. This was a randomized, single-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel study. Age, sex, and body mass index were matched among groups. All patients were recommended to maintain a low fat diet. Forty-four patients (about 18 had metabolic syndrome/type 2 diabetes mellitus) in each group were given placebo, n-3 FA 1 (O1), 2 (O2), or 4 g (O4), respectively daily for 2 months. n-3 FA therapy dose-dependently and significantly decreased triglycerides and triglycerides/HDL cholesterol and improved flow-mediated dilation, compared with placebo (by ANOVA). However, each n-3 FA therapy did not significantly decrease high-sensitivity C-reactive protein and fibrinogen, compared with placebo. O1 significantly increased insulin levels and decreased insulin sensitivity (determined by QUICKI) and O2 significantly decreased plasma adiponectin levels relative to baseline measurements. Of note, when compared with placebo, each n-3 FA therapy did not significantly change insulin, glucose, adiponectin, glycated hemoglobin levels and insulin sensitivity (by ANOVA). We observed similar results in a subgroup of patients with the metabolic syndrome. n-3 FA therapy dose-dependently and significantly decreased triglycerides and improved flow-mediated dilation. Nonetheless, n-3 FA therapy did not significantly improve acute-phase reactants and insulin sensitivity in patients with hypertriglyceridemia, regardless of dosages. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

  19. Improved Neural Signal Classification in a Rapid Serial Visual Presentation Task Using Active Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marathe, Amar R; Lawhern, Vernon J; Wu, Dongrui; Slayback, David; Lance, Brent J

    2016-03-01

    The application space for brain-computer interface (BCI) technologies is rapidly expanding with improvements in technology. However, most real-time BCIs require extensive individualized calibration prior to use, and systems often have to be recalibrated to account for changes in the neural signals due to a variety of factors including changes in human state, the surrounding environment, and task conditions. Novel approaches to reduce calibration time or effort will dramatically improve the usability of BCI systems. Active Learning (AL) is an iterative semi-supervised learning technique for learning in situations in which data may be abundant, but labels for the data are difficult or expensive to obtain. In this paper, we apply AL to a simulated BCI system for target identification using data from a rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) paradigm to minimize the amount of training samples needed to initially calibrate a neural classifier. Our results show AL can produce similar overall classification accuracy with significantly less labeled data (in some cases less than 20%) when compared to alternative calibration approaches. In fact, AL classification performance matches performance of 10-fold cross-validation (CV) in over 70% of subjects when training with less than 50% of the data. To our knowledge, this is the first work to demonstrate the use of AL for offline electroencephalography (EEG) calibration in a simulated BCI paradigm. While AL itself is not often amenable for use in real-time systems, this work opens the door to alternative AL-like systems that are more amenable for BCI applications and thus enables future efforts for developing highly adaptive BCI systems.

  20. Signal Amplification Technique (SAT): an approach for improving resolution and reducing image noise in computed tomography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Phelps, M.E.; Huang, S.C.; Hoffman, E.J.; Plummer, D.; Carson, R.

    1981-01-01

    Spatial resolution improvements in computed tomography (CT) have been limited by the large and unique error propagation properties of this technique. The desire to provide maximum image resolution has resulted in the use of reconstruction filter functions designed to produce tomographic images with resolution as close as possible to the intrinsic detector resolution. Thus, many CT systems produce images with excessive noise with the system resolution determined by the detector resolution rather than the reconstruction algorithm. CT is a rigorous mathematical technique which applies an increasing amplification to increasing spatial frequencies in the measured data. This mathematical approach to spatial frequency amplification cannot distinguish between signal and noise and therefore both are amplified equally. We report here a method in which tomographic resolution is improved by using very small detectors to selectively amplify the signal and not noise. Thus, this approach is referred to as the signal amplification technique (SAT). SAT can provide dramatic improvements in image resolution without increases in statistical noise or dose because increases in the cutoff frequency of the reconstruction algorithm are not required to improve image resolution. Alternatively, in cases where image counts are low, such as in rapid dynamic or receptor studies, statistical noise can be reduced by lowering the cutoff frequency while still maintaining the best possible image resolution. A possible system design for a positron CT system with SAT is described

  1. Comparative Analysis of the Clinical Significance of Oscillatory Components in the Rhythmic Structure of Pulse Signal in the Diagnostics of Psychosomatic Disorders in School Age Children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desova, A A; Dorofeyuk, A A; Anokhin, A M

    2017-01-01

    We performed a comparative analysis of the types of spectral density typical of various parameters of pulse signal. The experimental material was obtained during the examination of school age children with various psychosomatic disorders. We also performed a typological analysis of the spectral density functions corresponding to the time series of different parameters of a single oscillation of pulse signals; the results of their comparative analysis are presented. We determined the most significant spectral components for two disordersin children: arterial hypertension and mitral valve prolapse.

  2. Signal Quality Improvement Algorithms for MEMS Gyroscope-Based Human Motion Analysis Systems: A Systematic Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiaying Du

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Motion sensors such as MEMS gyroscopes and accelerometers are characterized by a small size, light weight, high sensitivity, and low cost. They are used in an increasing number of applications. However, they are easily influenced by environmental effects such as temperature change, shock, and vibration. Thus, signal processing is essential for minimizing errors and improving signal quality and system stability. The aim of this work is to investigate and present a systematic review of different signal error reduction algorithms that are used for MEMS gyroscope-based motion analysis systems for human motion analysis or have the potential to be used in this area. A systematic search was performed with the search engines/databases of the ACM Digital Library, IEEE Xplore, PubMed, and Scopus. Sixteen papers that focus on MEMS gyroscope-related signal processing and were published in journals or conference proceedings in the past 10 years were found and fully reviewed. Seventeen algorithms were categorized into four main groups: Kalman-filter-based algorithms, adaptive-based algorithms, simple filter algorithms, and compensation-based algorithms. The algorithms were analyzed and presented along with their characteristics such as advantages, disadvantages, and time limitations. A user guide to the most suitable signal processing algorithms within this area is presented.

  3. Signal Quality Improvement Algorithms for MEMS Gyroscope-Based Human Motion Analysis Systems: A Systematic Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Jiaying; Gerdtman, Christer; Lindén, Maria

    2018-04-06

    Motion sensors such as MEMS gyroscopes and accelerometers are characterized by a small size, light weight, high sensitivity, and low cost. They are used in an increasing number of applications. However, they are easily influenced by environmental effects such as temperature change, shock, and vibration. Thus, signal processing is essential for minimizing errors and improving signal quality and system stability. The aim of this work is to investigate and present a systematic review of different signal error reduction algorithms that are used for MEMS gyroscope-based motion analysis systems for human motion analysis or have the potential to be used in this area. A systematic search was performed with the search engines/databases of the ACM Digital Library, IEEE Xplore, PubMed, and Scopus. Sixteen papers that focus on MEMS gyroscope-related signal processing and were published in journals or conference proceedings in the past 10 years were found and fully reviewed. Seventeen algorithms were categorized into four main groups: Kalman-filter-based algorithms, adaptive-based algorithms, simple filter algorithms, and compensation-based algorithms. The algorithms were analyzed and presented along with their characteristics such as advantages, disadvantages, and time limitations. A user guide to the most suitable signal processing algorithms within this area is presented.

  4. Prior Knowledge Improves Decoding of Finger Flexion from Electrocorticographic (ECoG Signals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zuoguan eWang

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Brain-computer interfaces (BCIs use brain signals to convey a user's intent. Some BCI approaches begin by decoding kinematic parameters of movements from brain signals, and then proceed to using these signals, in absence of movements, to allow a user to control an output. Recent results have shown that electrocorticographic (ECoG recordings from the surface of the brain in humans can give information about kinematic parameters (eg{} hand velocity or finger flexion. The decoding approaches in these studies usually employed classical classification/regression algorithms that derive a linear mapping between brain signals and outputs. However, they typically only incorporate little prior information about the target movement parameter. In this paper, we incorporate prior knowledge using a Bayesian decoding method, and use it to decode finger flexion from ECoG signals. Specifically, we exploit the anatomic constraints and dynamic constraints that govern finger flexion and incorporate these constraints in the construction, structure, and the probabilistic functions of the prior model of a switched non-parametric dynamic system (SNDS. Given a measurement model resulting from a traditional linear regression method, we decoded finger flexion using posterior estimation that combined the prior and measurement models. Our results show that the application of the Bayesian decoding model, which incorporates prior knowledge, improves decoding performance compared to the application of a linear regression model, which does not incorporate prior knowledge. Thus, the results presented in this paper may ultimately lead to neurally controlled hand prostheses with full fine-grained finger articulation.

  5. Time resolution improvement of Schottky CdTe PET detectors using digital signal processing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakhostin, M.; Ishii, K.; Kikuchi, Y.; Matsuyama, S.; Yamazaki, H.; Torshabi, A. Esmaili

    2009-01-01

    We present the results of our study on the timing performance of Schottky CdTe PET detectors using the technique of digital signal processing. The coincidence signals between a CdTe detector (15x15x1 mm 3 ) and a fast liquid scintillator detector were digitized by a fast digital oscilloscope and analyzed. In the analysis, digital versions of the elements of timing circuits, including pulse shaper and time discriminator, were created and a digital implementation of the Amplitude and Rise-time Compensation (ARC) mode of timing was performed. Owing to a very fine adjustment of the parameters of timing measurement, a good time resolution of less than 9.9 ns (FWHM) at an energy threshold of 150 keV was achieved. In the next step, a new method of time pickoff for improvement of timing resolution without loss in the detection efficiency of CdTe detectors was examined. In the method, signals from a CdTe detector are grouped by their rise-times and different procedures of time pickoff are applied to the signals of each group. Then, the time pickoffs are synchronized by compensating the fixed time offset, caused by the different time pickoff procedures. This method leads to an improved time resolution of ∼7.2 ns (FWHM) at an energy threshold of as low as 150 keV. The methods presented in this work are computationally fast enough to be used for online processing of data in an actual PET system.

  6. From genetics to functional genomics: Improvement in drought signaling and tolerance in wheat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hikmet eBudak

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Drought being a yield limiting factor has become a major threat to international food security. It is a complex trait and drought tolerance response is carried out by various genes, transcription factors (TFs, microRNAs (miRNAs, hormones, proteins, co-factors, ions and metabolites. This complexity has limited the development of wheat cultivars for drought tolerance by classical breeding. However, attempts have been made to fill the lost genetic diversity by crossing wheat with wild wheat relatives. In recent years, several molecular markers including single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs and quantitative trait loci (QTLs associated with genes for drought signaling pathways have been reported. Screening of large wheat collections by marker assisted selection (MAS and transformation of wheat with different genes/TFs has improved drought signaling pathways and tolerance. Several miRNAs also provide drought tolerance to wheat by regulating various TFs/genes. Emergence of OMICS techniques including transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics and ionomics has helped to identify and characterize the genes, proteins, metabolites and ions involved in drought signaling pathways. Together, all these efforts helped in understanding the complex drought tolerance mechanism. Here, we have reviewed the advances in wide hybridization, MAS, QTL mapping, miRNAs, transgenic technique, genome editing system and above mentioned functional genomics tools for identification and utility of signaling molecules for improvement in wheat drought tolerance

  7. Linearity improvement on wide-range log signal of neutron measurement system for HANARO

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Young-Ki; Tuetken, Jeffrey S.

    1998-01-01

    This paper discusses engineering activities for improving the linearity characteristics of the Log Power signal from the neutron measurement system for HANARO. This neutron measurement system uses a fission chamber based detector which covers 10.3 decade-wide range from 10 -8 % full power(FP) up to 200%FP, The Log Power signal is designed to control the reactor at low power levels where most of the reactor physics tests are carried out. Therefore, the linearity characteristics of the Log Power signal is the major factor for accurate reactor power control. During the commissioning of the neutron measurement system, it was found that the linearity characteristics of the Log Power signal, especially near 10 -2 %FP, were not accurate enough for controlling the reactor during physics testing. Analysis of the system linearity data directly measured with reactor operating determined that the system was not operating per the design characteristics established from previous installations. The linearity data, which were taken as the reactor was increased in power, were sent to manufacturer's engineering group and a follow-up measures based on the analysis were then fed back to the field. Through step by step trouble-shooting activities, which included minor circuit modifications and alignment procedure changes, the linearity characteristics have been successfully improved and now exceed minimum performance requirements. This paper discusses the trouble-shooting techniques applied, the changes in the linearity characteristics, special circumstances in the HANARO application and the final resolution. (author)

  8. Improvement of range spatial resolution of medical ultrasound imaging by element-domain signal processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasegawa, Hideyuki

    2017-07-01

    The range spatial resolution is an important factor determining the image quality in ultrasonic imaging. The range spatial resolution in ultrasonic imaging depends on the ultrasonic pulse length, which is determined by the mechanical response of the piezoelectric element in an ultrasonic probe. To improve the range spatial resolution without replacing the transducer element, in the present study, methods based on maximum likelihood (ML) estimation and multiple signal classification (MUSIC) were proposed. The proposed methods were applied to echo signals received by individual transducer elements in an ultrasonic probe. The basic experimental results showed that the axial half maximum of the echo from a string phantom was improved from 0.21 mm (conventional method) to 0.086 mm (ML) and 0.094 mm (MUSIC).

  9. [Clinical significance of signal transduction and activators of transcription 3, E-cadherin and vimentin in colon cancer].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Chao; Xu, Jian-Hua; Liu, Tao; Cui, Hao

    2011-03-01

    To evaluate the clinical significance of STAT3, E-cadherin and vimentin in colon cancer. Samples of colon cancer tissue and adjacent normal tissue were procured from 70 patients with colon cancer. The expressions of STAT3, E-cadherin and vimentin were detected by immunohistochemistry. Associations of clinicopathological characteristics and these three factors were evaluated. STAT3, E-cadherin, vimentin were positive in 74.3%,32.9%, and 78.6% in the colon cancer tissues, respectively, and were 15.7%, 82.9%, and 12.9% in normal colon mucosa tissues, respectively. They were correlated with tumor differentiation, depth of invasion, lymph node metastasis, and TNM staging(Pcolon cancer. The expressions of STAT3, E-cadherin and vimentin may serve as prognostic indicators for patients with colon cancer.

  10. Improvement of the energy resolution via an optimized digital signal processing in GERDA Phase I

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agostini, M.; Allardt, M.; Bakalyarov, A. M.; Balata, M.; Barabanov, I.; Barros, N.; Baudis, L.; Bauer, C.; Becerici-Schmidt, N.; Bellotti, E.; Belogurov, S.; Belyaev, S. T.; Benato, G.; Bettini, A.; Bezrukov, L.; Bode, T.; Borowicz, D.; Brudanin, V.; Brugnera, R.; Budjáš, D.; Caldwell, A.; Cattadori, C.; Chernogorov, A.; D'Andrea, V.; Demidova, E. V.; Vacri, A. di; Domula, A.; Doroshkevich, E.; Egorov, V.; Falkenstein, R.; Fedorova, O.; Freund, K.; Frodyma, N.; Gangapshev, A.; Garfagnini, A.; Grabmayr, P.; Gurentsov, V.; Gusev, K.; Hegai, A.; Heisel, M.; Hemmer, S.; Heusser, G.; Hofmann, W.; Hult, M.; Inzhechik, L. V.; Janicskó Csáthy, J.; Jochum, J.; Junker, M.; Kazalov, V.; Kihm, T.; Kirpichnikov, I. V.; Kirsch, A.; Klimenko, A.; Knöpfle, K. T.; Kochetov, O.; Kornoukhov, V. N.; Kuzminov, V. V.; Laubenstein, ********************M.; Lazzaro, A.; Lebedev, V. I.; Lehnert, B.; Liao, H. Y.; Lindner, M.; Lippi, I.; Lubashevskiy, A.; Lubsandorzhiev, B.; Lutter, G.; Macolino, C.; Majorovits, B.; Maneschg, W.; Medinaceli, E.; Misiaszek, M.; Moseev, P.; Nemchenok, I.; Palioselitis, D.; Panas, K.; Pandola, L.; Pelczar, K.; Pullia, A.; Riboldi, S.; Rumyantseva, N.; Sada, C.; Salathe, M.; Schmitt, C.; Schneider, B.; Schönert, S.; Schreiner, J.; Schütz, A.-K.; Schulz, O.; Schwingenheuer, B.; Selivanenko, O.; Shirchenko, M.; Simgen, H.; Smolnikov, A.; Stanco, L.; Stepaniuk, M.; Ur, C. A.; Vanhoefer, L.; Vasenko, A. A.; Veresnikova, A.; von Sturm, K.; Wagner, V.; Walter, M.; Wegmann, A.; Wester, T.; Wilsenach, H.; Wojcik, M.; Yanovich, E.; Zavarise, P.; Zhitnikov, I.; Zhukov, S. V.; Zinatulina, D.; Zuber, K.; Zuzel, G.

    2015-06-01

    An optimized digital shaping filter has been developed for the Gerda experiment which searches for neutrinoless double beta decay in Ge. The Gerda Phase I energy calibration data have been reprocessed and an average improvement of 0.3 keV in energy resolution (FWHM) corresponding to 10 % at the value for decay in Ge is obtained. This is possible thanks to the enhanced low-frequency noise rejection of this Zero Area Cusp (ZAC) signal shaping filter.

  11. THE ACCOUNT AND ANALYSIS IMPROVE FOR USING MAIN ITEMS IN DIVISION, SIGNALIZATION AND CONNECTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. M. Kozuberda

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available The article is dealt with proposals for improvement of accounting in signaling and communication and the reasons for such decisions. It is offered to use new methods of calculating depreciation, change the criteria for enrollment in low-value items and simplify the procedure for writing off fixed assets. These changes should reduce the costs at the enterprise, simplify the accounting work and improve the overall performance of the maintenance section, provide better to its main function – the traffic safety of trains.

  12. Performance improvement of two-dimensional EUV spectroscopy based on high frame rate CCD and signal normalization method

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, H.M.; Morita, S.; Ohishi, T.; Goto, M.; Huang, X.L.

    2014-01-01

    In the Large Helical Device (LHD), the performance of two-dimensional (2-D) extreme ultraviolet (EUV) spectroscopy with wavelength range of 30-650A has been improved by installing a high frame rate CCD and applying a signal intensity normalization method. With upgraded 2-D space-resolved EUV spectrometer, measurement of 2-D impurity emission profiles with high horizontal resolution is possible in high-density NBI discharges. The variation in intensities of EUV emission among a few discharges is significantly reduced by normalizing the signal to the spectral intensity from EUV_—Long spectrometer which works as an impurity monitor with high-time resolution. As a result, high resolution 2-D intensity distribution has been obtained from CIV (384.176A), CV(2x40.27A), CVI(2x33.73A) and HeII(303.78A). (author)

  13. Sensor-based vibration signal feature extraction using an improved composite dictionary matching pursuit algorithm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, Lingli; Wu, Na; Wang, Wenjing; Kang, Chenhui

    2014-09-09

    This paper presents a new method for a composite dictionary matching pursuit algorithm, which is applied to vibration sensor signal feature extraction and fault diagnosis of a gearbox. Three advantages are highlighted in the new method. First, the composite dictionary in the algorithm has been changed from multi-atom matching to single-atom matching. Compared to non-composite dictionary single-atom matching, the original composite dictionary multi-atom matching pursuit (CD-MaMP) algorithm can achieve noise reduction in the reconstruction stage, but it cannot dramatically reduce the computational cost and improve the efficiency in the decomposition stage. Therefore, the optimized composite dictionary single-atom matching algorithm (CD-SaMP) is proposed. Second, the termination condition of iteration based on the attenuation coefficient is put forward to improve the sparsity and efficiency of the algorithm, which adjusts the parameters of the termination condition constantly in the process of decomposition to avoid noise. Third, composite dictionaries are enriched with the modulation dictionary, which is one of the important structural characteristics of gear fault signals. Meanwhile, the termination condition of iteration settings, sub-feature dictionary selections and operation efficiency between CD-MaMP and CD-SaMP are discussed, aiming at gear simulation vibration signals with noise. The simulation sensor-based vibration signal results show that the termination condition of iteration based on the attenuation coefficient enhances decomposition sparsity greatly and achieves a good effect of noise reduction. Furthermore, the modulation dictionary achieves a better matching effect compared to the Fourier dictionary, and CD-SaMP has a great advantage of sparsity and efficiency compared with the CD-MaMP. The sensor-based vibration signals measured from practical engineering gearbox analyses have further shown that the CD-SaMP decomposition and reconstruction algorithm

  14. Sensor-Based Vibration Signal Feature Extraction Using an Improved Composite Dictionary Matching Pursuit Algorithm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lingli Cui

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a new method for a composite dictionary matching pursuit algorithm, which is applied to vibration sensor signal feature extraction and fault diagnosis of a gearbox. Three advantages are highlighted in the new method. First, the composite dictionary in the algorithm has been changed from multi-atom matching to single-atom matching. Compared to non-composite dictionary single-atom matching, the original composite dictionary multi-atom matching pursuit (CD-MaMP algorithm can achieve noise reduction in the reconstruction stage, but it cannot dramatically reduce the computational cost and improve the efficiency in the decomposition stage. Therefore, the optimized composite dictionary single-atom matching algorithm (CD-SaMP is proposed. Second, the termination condition of iteration based on the attenuation coefficient is put forward to improve the sparsity and efficiency of the algorithm, which adjusts the parameters of the termination condition constantly in the process of decomposition to avoid noise. Third, composite dictionaries are enriched with the modulation dictionary, which is one of the important structural characteristics of gear fault signals. Meanwhile, the termination condition of iteration settings, sub-feature dictionary selections and operation efficiency between CD-MaMP and CD-SaMP are discussed, aiming at gear simulation vibration signals with noise. The simulation sensor-based vibration signal results show that the termination condition of iteration based on the attenuation coefficient enhances decomposition sparsity greatly and achieves a good effect of noise reduction. Furthermore, the modulation dictionary achieves a better matching effect compared to the Fourier dictionary, and CD-SaMP has a great advantage of sparsity and efficiency compared with the CD-MaMP. The sensor-based vibration signals measured from practical engineering gearbox analyses have further shown that the CD-SaMP decomposition and

  15. Acupuncture Alters Expression of Insulin Signaling Related Molecules and Improves Insulin Resistance in OLETF Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xin-Yu Huang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available To determine effect of acupuncture on insulin resistance in Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF rats and to evaluate expression of insulin signaling components. Rats were divided into three groups: Sprague-Dawley (SD rats, OLETF rats, and acupuncture+OLETF rats. Acupuncture was subcutaneously applied to Neiguan (PC6, Zusanli (ST36, and Sanyinjiao (SP6; in contrast, acupuncture to Shenshu (BL23 was administered perpendicularly. For Neiguan (PC6 and Zusanli (ST36, needles were connected to an electroacupuncture (EA apparatus. Fasting blood glucose (FPG was measured by glucose oxidase method. Plasma fasting insulin (FINS and serum C peptide (C-P were determined by ELISA. Protein and mRNA expressions of insulin signaling molecules were determined by Western blot and real-time RT-PCR, respectively. OLETF rats exhibit increased levels of FPG, FINS, C-P, and homeostasis model assessment-estimated insulin resistance (HOMA-IR, which were effectively decreased by acupuncture treatment. mRNA expressions of several insulin signaling related molecules IRS1, IRS2, Akt2, aPKCζ, and GLUT4 were decreased in OLETF rats compared to SD controls. Expression of these molecules was restored back to normal levels upon acupuncture administration. PI3K-p85α was increased in OLETF rats; this increase was also reversed by acupuncture treatment. Acupuncture improves insulin resistance in OLETF rats, possibly via regulating expression of key insulin signaling related molecules.

  16. GNSS Signal Tracking Performance Improvement for Highly Dynamic Receivers by Gyroscopic Mounting Crystal Oscillator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abedi, Maryam; Jin, Tian; Sun, Kewen

    2015-08-31

    In this paper, the efficiency of the gyroscopic mounting method is studied for a highly dynamic GNSS receiver's reference oscillator for reducing signal loss. Analyses are performed separately in two phases, atmospheric and upper atmospheric flights. Results show that the proposed mounting reduces signal loss, especially in parts of the trajectory where its probability is the highest. This reduction effect appears especially for crystal oscillators with a low elevation angle g-sensitivity vector. The gyroscopic mounting influences frequency deviation or jitter caused by dynamic loads on replica carrier and affects the frequency locked loop (FLL) as the dominant tracking loop in highly dynamic GNSS receivers. In terms of steady-state load, the proposed mounting mostly reduces the frequency deviation below the one-sigma threshold of FLL (1σ(FLL)). The mounting method can also reduce the frequency jitter caused by sinusoidal vibrations and reduces the probability of signal loss in parts of the trajectory where the other error sources accompany this vibration load. In the case of random vibration, which is the main disturbance source of FLL, gyroscopic mounting is even able to suppress the disturbances greater than the three-sigma threshold of FLL (3σ(FLL)). In this way, signal tracking performance can be improved by the gyroscopic mounting method for highly dynamic GNSS receivers.

  17. Improved Reception of In-Body Signals by Means of a Wearable Multi-Antenna System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thijs Castel

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available High data-rate wireless communication for in-body human implants is mainly performed in the 402–405 MHz Medical Implant Communication System band and the 2.45 GHz Industrial, Scientific and Medical band. The latter band offers larger bandwidth, enabling high-resolution live video transmission. Although in-body signal attenuation is larger, at least 29 dB more power may be transmitted in this band and the antenna efficiency for compact antennas at 2.45 GHz is also up to 10 times higher. Moreover, at the receive side, one can exploit the large surface provided by a garment by deploying multiple compact highly efficient wearable antennas, capturing the signals transmitted by the implant directly at the body surface, yielding stronger signals and reducing interference. In this paper, we implement a reliable 3.5 Mbps wearable textile multi-antenna system suitable for integration into a jacket worn by a patient, and evaluate its potential to improve the In-to-Out Body wireless link reliability by means of spatial receive diversity in a standardized measurement setup. We derive the optimal distribution and the minimum number of on-body antennas required to ensure signal levels that are large enough for real-time wireless endoscopy-capsule applications, at varying positions and orientations of the implant in the human body.

  18. Improving sensitivity in micro-free flow electrophoresis using signal averaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turgeon, Ryan T.; Bowser, Michael T.

    2009-01-01

    Microfluidic free-flow electrophoresis (μFFE) is a separation technique that separates continuous streams of analytes as they travel through an electric field in a planar flow channel. The continuous nature of the μFFE separation suggests that approaches more commonly applied in spectroscopy and imaging may be effective in improving sensitivity. The current paper describes the S/N improvements that can be achieved by simply averaging multiple images of a μFFE separation; 20–24-fold improvements in S/N were observed by averaging the signal from 500 images recorded for over 2 min. Up to an 80-fold improvement in S/N was observed by averaging 6500 images. Detection limits as low as 14 pM were achieved for fluorescein, which is impressive considering the non-ideal optical set-up used in these experiments. The limitation to this signal averaging approach was the stability of the μFFE separation. At separation times longer than 20 min bubbles began to form at the electrodes, which disrupted the flow profile through the device, giving rise to erratic peak positions. PMID:19319908

  19. Natalizumab Significantly Improves Cognitive Impairment over Three Years in MS: Pattern of Disability Progression and Preliminary MRI Findings.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavia Mattioli

    Full Text Available Previous studies reported that Multiple Sclerosis (MS patients treated with natalizumab for one or two years exhibit a significant reduction in relapse rate and in cognitive impairment, but the long term effects on cognitive performance are unknown. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of natalizumab on cognitive impairment in a cohort of 24 consecutive patients with relapsing remitting MS treated for 3 years. The neuropsychological tests, as well as relapse number and EDSS, were assessed at baseline and yearly for three years. The impact on cortical atrophy was also considered in a subgroup of them, and are thus to be considered as preliminary. Results showed a significant reduction in the number of impaired neuropsychological tests after three years, a significant decrease in annualized relapse rate at each time points compared to baseline and a stable EDSS. In the neuropsychological assessment, a significant improvement in memory, attention and executive function test scores was detected. Preliminary MRI data show that, while GM volume did not change at 3 years, a significantly greater parahippocampal and prefrontal gray matter density was noticed, the former correlating with neuropsychological improvement in a memory test. This study showed that therapy with Natalizumab is helpful in improving cognitive performance, and is likely to have a protective role on grey matter, over a three years follow-up.

  20. DOA and Noncircular Phase Estimation of Noncircular Signal via an Improved Noncircular Rotational Invariance Propagator Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xueqiang Chen

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available We consider the computationally efficient direction-of-arrival (DOA and noncircular (NC phase estimation problem of noncircular signal for uniform linear array. The key idea is to apply the noncircular propagator method (NC-PM which does not require eigenvalue decomposition (EVD of the covariance matrix or singular value decomposition (SVD of the received data. Noncircular rotational invariance propagator method (NC-RI-PM avoids spectral peak searching in PM and can obtain the closed-form solution of DOA, so it has lower computational complexity. An improved NC-RI-PM algorithm of noncircular signal for uniform linear array is proposed to estimate the elevation angles and noncircular phases with automatic pairing. We reconstruct the extended array output by combining the array output and its conjugated counterpart. Our algorithm fully uses the extended array elements in the improved propagator matrix to estimate the elevation angles and noncircular phases by utilizing the rotational invariance property between subarrays. Compared with NC-RI-PM, the proposed algorithm has better angle estimation performance and much lower computational load. The computational complexity of the proposed algorithm is analyzed. We also derive the variance of estimation error and Cramer-Rao bound (CRB of noncircular signal for uniform linear array. Finally, simulation results are presented to demonstrate the effectiveness of our algorithm.

  1. Phasor Measurement Unit Test and Applications for Small Signal Stability Assessment and Improvement of Power System

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ghiga, Radu

    to be less predictable. Therefore, the methods used for stability and security assessment will most likely use information from the wide-area measurements systems (WAMS). The work presented in this thesis deals on one hand with the development of test methods and validation of phasor measurement units (PMUs......) which are considered to be one of the key technologies in WAMS, and on the other hand with the possibility of using PMU measurements together with large wind power plants (WPPs) to help improve the damping of inter area oscillations. To validate the PMUs, a laboratory test setup is assembled....... The hardware components are capable of generating, with the required accuracy, the test signals injected in the PMUs. The signals are created according to the requirements defined in the current IEEE C37.118.1-2011 standard, to test the steady-state and dynamic compliance of the PMUs. The performance...

  2. Upregulation of transmitter release probability improves a conversion of synaptic analogue signals into neuronal digital spikes

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Action potentials at the neurons and graded signals at the synapses are primary codes in the brain. In terms of their functional interaction, the studies were focused on the influence of presynaptic spike patterns on synaptic activities. How the synapse dynamics quantitatively regulates the encoding of postsynaptic digital spikes remains unclear. We investigated this question at unitary glutamatergic synapses on cortical GABAergic neurons, especially the quantitative influences of release probability on synapse dynamics and neuronal encoding. Glutamate release probability and synaptic strength are proportionally upregulated by presynaptic sequential spikes. The upregulation of release probability and the efficiency of probability-driven synaptic facilitation are strengthened by elevating presynaptic spike frequency and Ca2+. The upregulation of release probability improves spike capacity and timing precision at postsynaptic neuron. These results suggest that the upregulation of presynaptic glutamate release facilitates a conversion of synaptic analogue signals into digital spikes in postsynaptic neurons, i.e., a functional compatibility between presynaptic and postsynaptic partners. PMID:22852823

  3. Modulation of phytochrome signaling networks for improved biomass accumulation using a bioenergy crop model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mockler, Todd C. [Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, Saint Louis, MO (United States)

    2016-11-07

    Plant growth and development, including stem elongation, flowering time, and shade-avoidance habits, are affected by wavelength composition (i.e., light quality) of the light environment. the molecular mechanisms underlying light perception and signaling pathways in plants have been best characterized in Arabidopsis thaliana where dozens of genes have been implicated in converging, complementary, and antagonistic pathways communicating light quality cues perceived by the phytochrome (red/far-red) cryptochrome (blue) and phototropin (blue) photorecptors. Light perception and signaling have been studied in grasses, including rice and sorghum but in much less detail than in Arabidopsis. During the course of the Mocker lab's DOE-funded wrok generating a gene expression atlas in Brachypodium distachyon we observed that Brachypodium plants grown in continuous monochromatic red light or continuous white light enriched in far-red light accumulated significantly more biomass and exhibited significantly greater seed yield than plants grown in monochromatic blue light or white light. This phenomenon was also observed in two other grasses, switchgrass and rice. We will systematically manipulate the expression of genes predicted to function in Brachypodium phytochrome signaling and assess the phenotypic consequences in transgenic Brachypodium plants in terms of morphology, stature, biomass accumulation, and cell wall composition. We will also interrogate direct interactions between candidate phytochrome signaling transcription factors and target promoters using a high-throughput yeast one-hybrid system. Brachypodium distachyon has emerged as a model grass species and is closely related to candidate feedstock crops for bioethanol production. Identification of genes capable of modifying growth characteristics of Brachypodium, when misexpressed, in particular increasing biomass accumulation, by modulating photoreceptor signaling will provide valuable candidates for

  4. Improvement of the energy resolution via an optimized digital signal processing in GERDA Phase I

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Agostini, M.; Allardt, M.; Bakalyarov, A. M.; Balata, M.

    2015-01-01

    An optimized digital shaping filter has been developed for the Gerda experiment which searches for neutrinoless double beta decay in 76 Ge. The Gerda Phase I energy calibration data have been reprocessed and an average improvement of 0.3 keV in energy resolution (FWHM) corresponding to 10 % at the Q value for 0νββ decay in 76 Ge is obtained. This is possible thanks to the enhanced low-frequency noise rejection of this Zero Area Cusp (ZAC) signal shaping filter

  5. Improvement of the energy resolution via an optimized digital signal processing in GERDA Phase I

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Agostini, M. [Physik Department and Excellence Cluster Universe, Technische Universität München, Munich (Germany); Allardt, M. [Institut für Kern- und Teilchenphysik, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden (Germany); Bakalyarov, A. M. [National Research Center “Kurchatov Institute”, Moscow (Russian Federation); Balata, M. [INFN Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso, LNGS, and Gran Sasso Science Institute, GSSI, Assergi (Italy); Collaboration: GERDA Collaboration; and others

    2015-06-09

    An optimized digital shaping filter has been developed for the Gerda experiment which searches for neutrinoless double beta decay in {sup 76}Ge. The Gerda Phase I energy calibration data have been reprocessed and an average improvement of 0.3 keV in energy resolution (FWHM) corresponding to 10 % at the Q value for 0νββ decay in {sup 76}Ge is obtained. This is possible thanks to the enhanced low-frequency noise rejection of this Zero Area Cusp (ZAC) signal shaping filter.

  6. Improvement of the energy resolution via an optimized digital signal processing in GERDA Phase I

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Agostini, M.; Bode, T.; Budjas, D.; Janicsko Csathy, J.; Lazzaro, A.; Schoenert, S. [Technische Universitaet Muenchen, Physik Department and Excellence Cluster Universe, Munich (Germany); Allardt, M.; Domula, A.; Lehnert, B.; Schneider, B.; Wester, T.; Wilsenach, H.; Zuber, K. [Technische Universitaet Dresden, Institut fuer Kern- und Teilchenphysik, Dresden (Germany); Bakalyarov, A.M.; Belyaev, S.T.; Lebedev, V.I.; Zhukov, S.V. [National Research Center ' ' Kurchatov Institute' ' , Moscow (Russian Federation); Balata, M.; D' Andrea, V.; Di Vacri, A.; Junker, M.; Laubenstein, M.; Macolino, C.; Zavarise, P. [LNGS, Assergi (Italy); Barabanov, I.; Bezrukov, L.; Doroshkevich, E.; Fedorova, O.; Gurentsov, V.; Kazalov, V.; Kuzminov, V.V.; Lubsandorzhiev, B.; Moseev, P.; Selivanenko, O.; Veresnikova, A.; Yanovich, E. [Institute for Nuclear Research of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow (Russian Federation); Barros, N. [Technische Universitaet Dresden, Institut fuer Kern- und Teilchenphysik, Dresden (Germany); University of Pennsylvania, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Philadelphia, PA (United States); Baudis, L.; Benato, G.; Walter, M. [Physik Institut der Universitaet Zuerich, Zurich (Switzerland); Bauer, C.; Heisel, M.; Heusser, G.; Hofmann, W.; Kihm, T.; Kirsch, A.; Knoepfle, K.T.; Lindner, M.; Maneschg, W.; Salathe, M.; Schreiner, J.; Schwingenheuer, B.; Simgen, H.; Smolnikov, A.; Stepaniuk, M.; Wagner, V.; Wegmann, A. [Max-Planck-Institut fuer Kernphysik, Heidelberg (Germany); Becerici-Schmidt, N.; Caldwell, A.; Liao, H.Y.; Majorovits, B.; Palioselitis, D.; Schulz, O.; Vanhoefer, L. [Max-Planck-Institut fuer Physik, Munich (Germany); Bellotti, E. [Universita Milano Bicocca, Dipartimento di Fisica, Milan (Italy); INFN Milano Bicocca, Milan (Italy); Belogurov, S.; Kornoukhov, V.N. [Institute for Nuclear Research of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow (Russian Federation); Institute for Theoretical and Experimental Physics, Moscow (Russian Federation); Bettini, A.; Brugnera, R.; Garfagnini, A.; Hemmer, S.; Medinaceli, E.; Sada, C.; Sturm, K. von [Universita di Padova, Dipartimento di Fisica e Astronomia, Padua (Italy); INFN Padova, Padua (Italy); Borowicz, D. [Jagiellonian University, Institute of Physics, Krakow (Poland); Joint Institute for Nuclear Research, Dubna (Russian Federation); Brudanin, V.; Egorov, V.; Kochetov, O.; Nemchenok, I.; Rumyantseva, N.; Zhitnikov, I.; Zinatulina, D. [Joint Institute for Nuclear Research, Dubna (Russian Federation); Cattadori, C. [INFN Milano Bicocca, Milan (Italy); Chernogorov, A.; Demidova, E.V.; Kirpichnikov, I.V.; Vasenko, A.A. [Institute for Theoretical and Experimental Physics, Moscow (Russian Federation); Falkenstein, R.; Freund, K.; Grabmayr, P.; Hegai, A.; Jochum, J.; Schmitt, C.; Schuetz, A.K. [Eberhard Karls Universitaet Tuebingen, Physikalisches Institut, Tuebingen (Germany); Frodyma, N.; Misiaszek, M.; Panas, K.; Pelczar, K.; Wojcik, M.; Zuzel, G. [Jagiellonian University, Institute of Physics, Krakow (Poland); Gangapshev, A. [Max-Planck-Institut fuer Kernphysik, Heidelberg (Germany); Institute for Nuclear Research of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow (Russian Federation); Gusev, K. [Joint Institute for Nuclear Research, Dubna (Russian Federation); National Research Center ' ' Kurchatov Institute' ' , Moscow (Russian Federation); Technische Universitaet Muenchen, Physik Department and Excellence Cluster Universe, Munich (Germany); Hult, M.; Lutter, G. [Institute for Reference Materials and Measurements, Geel (Belgium); Inzhechik, L.V. [Institute for Nuclear Research of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow (Russian Federation); Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, Moscow (Russian Federation); Klimenko, A. [Joint Institute for Nuclear Research, Dubna (Russian Federation); Max-Planck-Institut fuer Kernphysik, Heidelberg (Germany); International University for Nature, Society and Man ' ' Dubna' ' , Dubna (Russian Federation); Lippi, I.; Stanco, L.; Ur, C.A. [INFN Padova, Padua (Italy); Lubashevskiy, A. [Joint Institute for Nuclear Research, Dubna (Russian Federation); Max-Planck-Institut fuer Kernphysik, Heidelberg (Germany); Pandola, L. [INFN Laboratori Nazionali del Sud, Catania (Italy); Pullia, A.; Riboldi, S. [Universita degli Studi di Milano, Dipartimento di Fisica, Milan (Italy); INFN, Milano (Italy); Shirchenko, M. [Joint Institute for Nuclear Research, Dubna (Russian Federation); National Research Center ' ' Kurchatov Institute' ' , Moscow (Russian Federation); Collaboration: GERDA Collaboration

    2015-06-15

    An optimized digital shaping filter has been developed for the Gerda experiment which searches for neutrinoless double beta decay in {sup 76}Ge. The GERDA Phase I energy calibration data have been reprocessed and an average improvement of 0.3 keV in energy resolution (FWHM) corresponding to 10% at the Q value for 0νββ decay in {sup 76}Ge is obtained. This is possible thanks to the enhanced low-frequency noise rejection of this Zero Area Cusp (ZAC) signal shaping filter. (orig.)

  7. Significant clinical improvement in radiation-induced lumbosacral poly-radiculopathy by a treatment combining pentoxifylline, tocopherol, and clodronate (Pentoclo)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Delanian, S. [Hop St Louis, Serv Oncol Radiotherapie, APHP, F-75010 Paris, (France); Lefaix, J.L. [CEA-LARIA, CIRIL-GANIL, Caen, (France); Maisonobe, T. [Hop La Pitie Salpetriere, Federat Neurophysiol Clin, APHP, Paris, (France)

    2008-07-01

    Radiation-induced (RI) peripheral neuropathy is a rare and severe delayed complication of radiotherapy that is spontaneously irreversible, with no standard of treatment. We previously developed a successful antioxidant treatment in RI fibrosis and necrosis. Two patients with progressive worsening RI lumbosacral poly-radiculopathy experienced over several years a significant clinical improvement in their neurological sensorimotor symptoms with long-term pentoxifylline-tocopherol-clodronate treatment, and good safety. (authors)

  8. The cumulative effect of small dietary changes may significantly improve nutritional intakes in free-living children and adults

    OpenAIRE

    Bornet , Francis; Paineau , Damien; Beaufils , François; Boulier , Alain; Cassuto , Dominique-Adèle; Chwalow , Judith; Combris , Pierre; Couet , Charles; Jouret , Béatrice; Lafay , Lionel; Laville , Martine; Mahé , Sylvain; Ricour , Claude; Romon , Monique; Simon , Chantal

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Background/Objectives: The ELPAS study was an 8-month randomized controlled dietary modification trial designed to test the hypothesis that family dietary coaching would improve nutritional intakes and weight control in 2026 free-living children and parents (Paineau et al., 2008). It resulted in significant nutritional changes, with beneficial effects on body mass index in adults. In these ancillary analyses, we investigated dietary changes throughout the intervention. ...

  9. Acid or erythromycin stress significantly improves transformation efficiency through regulating expression of DNA binding proteins in Lactococcus lactis F44.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Binbin; Zhang, Huawei; Liang, Dongmei; Hao, Panlong; Li, Yanni; Qiao, Jianjun

    2017-12-01

    Lactococcus lactis is a gram-positive bacterium used extensively in the dairy industry and food fermentation, and its biological characteristics are usually improved through genetic manipulation. However, poor transformation efficiency was the main restriction factor for the construction of engineered strains. In this study, the transformation efficiency of L. lactis F44 showed a 56.1-fold increase in acid condition (pH 5.0); meanwhile, erythromycin stress (0.04 μg/mL) promoted the transformation efficiency more significantly (76.9-fold). Notably, the transformation efficiency of F44e (L. lactis F44 harboring empty pLEB124) increased up to 149.1-fold under the synergistic stresses of acid and erythromycin. In addition, the gene expression of some DNA binding proteins (DprA, RadA, RadC, RecA, RecQ, and SsbA) changed correspondingly. Especially for radA, 25.1-fold improvement was detected when F44e was exposed to pH 5.0. Overexpression of some DNA binding proteins could improve the transformation efficiency. The results suggested that acid or erythromycin stress could improve the transformation efficiency of L. lactis through regulating gene expression of DNA binding proteins. We have proposed a simple but promising strategy for improving the transformation efficiency of L. lactis and other hard-transformed microorganisms. Copyright © 2017 American Dairy Science Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Improving the quality of a collective signal in a consumer EEG headset.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alejandro Morán

    Full Text Available This work focuses on the experimental data analysis of electroencephalography (EEG data, in which multiple sensors are recording oscillatory voltage time series. The EEG data analyzed in this manuscript has been acquired using a low-cost commercial headset, the Emotiv EPOC+. Our goal is to compare different techniques for the optimal estimation of collective rhythms from EEG data. To this end, a traditional method such as the principal component analysis (PCA is compared to more recent approaches to extract a collective rhythm from phase-synchronized data. Here, we extend the work by Schwabedal and Kantz (PRL 116, 104101 (2016 evaluating the performance of the Kosambi-Hilbert torsion (KHT method to extract a collective rhythm from multivariate oscillatory time series and compare it to results obtained from PCA. The KHT method takes advantage of the singular value decomposition algorithm and accounts for possible phase lags among different time series and allows to focus the analysis on a specific spectral band, optimally amplifying the signal-to-noise ratio of a common rhythm. We evaluate the performance of these methods for two particular sets of data: EEG data recorded with closed eyes and EEG data recorded while observing a screen flickering at 15 Hz. We found an improvement in the signal-to-noise ratio of the collective signal for the KHT over the PCA, particularly when random temporal shifts are added to the channels.

  11. Improved Prediction of Preterm Delivery Using Empirical Mode Decomposition Analysis of Uterine Electromyography Signals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng Ren

    Full Text Available Preterm delivery increases the risk of infant mortality and morbidity, and therefore developing reliable methods for predicting its likelihood are of great importance. Previous work using uterine electromyography (EMG recordings has shown that they may provide a promising and objective way for predicting risk of preterm delivery. However, to date attempts at utilizing computational approaches to achieve sufficient predictive confidence, in terms of area under the curve (AUC values, have not achieved the high discrimination accuracy that a clinical application requires. In our study, we propose a new analytical approach for assessing the risk of preterm delivery using EMG recordings which firstly employs Empirical Mode Decomposition (EMD to obtain their Intrinsic Mode Functions (IMF. Next, the entropy values of both instantaneous amplitude and instantaneous frequency of the first ten IMF components are computed in order to derive ratios of these two distinct components as features. Discrimination accuracy of this approach compared to those proposed previously was then calculated using six differently representative classifiers. Finally, three different electrode positions were analyzed for their prediction accuracy of preterm delivery in order to establish which uterine EMG recording location was optimal signal data. Overall, our results show a clear improvement in prediction accuracy of preterm delivery risk compared with previous approaches, achieving an impressive maximum AUC value of 0.986 when using signals from an electrode positioned below the navel. In sum, this provides a promising new method for analyzing uterine EMG signals to permit accurate clinical assessment of preterm delivery risk.

  12. Q-factor improvement of degenerate four-wave-mixing regenerators for ASE degraded signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Hang; Wu, Bao-jian; Geng, Yong; Zhou, Xing-yu; Sun, Fan

    2017-11-01

    All-optical regenerators can be used to suppress amplified spontaneous emission (ASE) noise introduced by cascaded erbium doped fiber amplifiers (EDFAs) in optical fiber communication systems and lead to the improvement of optical receiver sensitivity. By introducing the Q-factor transfer function (QTF), we evaluate the Q-factor performance of degenerate four-wave mixing (DFWM) regenerators with clock pump and reveal the differences between the optimal input powers determined from the static and dynamic power tranfer function (PTF) and the QTF curves. Our simulation shows that the clock-pump regnerator is capable of improving the Q-facor and receiver sensitivity for 40 Gbit/s ASE-degraded return-to-zero on-off keying (RZ-OOK) signal by 2.58 dB and 4.2 dB, respectively.

  13. Improved longitudinal magneto-optic Kerr effect signal contrast from nanomagnets with dielectric coatings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holiday, L. F.; Gibson, U. J.

    2006-12-01

    We report on the use of dielectric coatings to improve the contrast of longitudinal magneto-optic Kerr effect signals from submicron magnetic structures. Electron-beam lithography was used to define disks in 22 nm thick Ni films deposited on Si substrates. The structures were measured in four configurations: as-deposited, through a fused silica prism using index-matching fluid, coated with ZnS, and using a prism on top of the ZnS layer. The modified samples show up to 20 times improvement in the MOKE contrast due to admittance matching to the magnetic material and suppression of the substrate reflectance. The behavior is successfully predicted by a model that includes the magneto-optic response of the nickel layer and accounts for the fraction of the beam intercepted by the magnetic structure.

  14. An initiative to improve the management of clinically significant test results in a large health care network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Christopher L; Rothschild, Jeffrey M; Dighe, Anand S; Schiff, Gordon D; Graydon-Baker, Erin; Lenoci-Edwards, Jennifer; Dwyer, Cheryl; Khorasani, Ramin; Gandhi, Tejal K

    2013-11-01

    The failure of providers to communicate and follow up clinically significant test results (CSTR) is an important threat to patient safety. The Massachusetts Coalition for the Prevention of Medical Errors has endorsed the creation of systems to ensure that results can be received and acknowledged. In 2008 a task force was convened that represented clinicians, laboratories, radiology, patient safety, risk management, and information systems in a large health care network with the goals of providing recommendations and a road map for improvement in the management of CSTR and of implementing this improvement plan during the sub-force sequent five years. In drafting its charter, the task broadened the scope from "critical" results to "clinically significant" ones; clinically significant was defined as any result that requires further clinical action to avoid morbidity or mortality, regardless of the urgency of that action. The task force recommended four key areas for improvement--(1) standardization of policies and definitions, (2) robust identification of the patient's care team, (3) enhanced results management/tracking systems, and (4) centralized quality reporting and metrics. The task force faced many challenges in implementing these recommendations, including disagreements on definitions of CSTR and on who should have responsibility for CSTR, changes to established work flows, limitations of resources and of existing information systems, and definition of metrics. This large-scale effort to improve the communication and follow-up of CSTR in a health care network continues with ongoing work to address implementation challenges, refine policies, prepare for a new clinical information system platform, and identify new ways to measure the extent of this important safety problem.

  15. The SGLT2 Inhibitor Dapagliflozin Significantly Improves the Peripheral Microvascular Endothelial Function in Patients with Uncontrolled Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugiyama, Seigo; Jinnouchi, Hideaki; Kurinami, Noboru; Hieshima, Kunio; Yoshida, Akira; Jinnouchi, Katsunori; Nishimura, Hiroyuki; Suzuki, Tomoko; Miyamoto, Fumio; Kajiwara, Keizo; Jinnouchi, Tomio

    2018-03-30

    Objective Sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors reduce cardiovascular events and decrease the body fat mass in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). We examined whether or not the SGLT2-inhibitor dapagliflozin can improve the endothelial function associated with a reduction in abdominal fat mass. Methods We prospectively recruited patients with uncontrolled (hemoglobin A1c [HbA1c] >7.0%) T2DM who were not being treated by SGLT2 inhibitors. Patients were treated with add-on dapagliflozin (5 mg/day) or non-SGLT2 inhibitor medicines for 6 months to improve their HbA1c. We measured the peripheral microvascular endothelial function as assessed by reactive hyperemia peripheral arterial tonometry (RH-PAT) and calculated the natural logarithmic transformed value of the RH-PAT index (LnRHI). We then investigated changes in the LnRHI and abdominal fat area using computed tomography (CT). Results The subjects were 54 patients with uncontrolled T2DM (72.2% men) with a mean HbA1c of 8.1%. The HbA1c was significantly decreased in both groups, with no significant difference between the groups. Dapagliflozin treatment, but not non-SGLT2 inhibitor treatment, significantly increased the LnRHI. The changes in the LnRHI were significantly greater in the dapagliflozin group than in the non-SGLT2 inhibitor group. Dapagliflozin treatment, but not non-SGLT2 inhibitor treatment, significantly decreased the abdominal visceral fat area, subcutaneous fat area (SFA), and total fat area (TFA) as assessed by CT and significantly increased the plasma adiponectin levels. The percentage changes in the LnRHI were significantly correlated with changes in the SFA, TFA, systolic blood pressure, and adiponectin. Conclusion Add-on treatment with dapagliflozin significantly improves the glycemic control and endothelial function associated with a reduction in the abdominal fat mass in patients with uncontrolled T2DM.

  16. Changes and significance of oxygen-metabolism and SHH signal pathway in soldiers trained in high altitude after returning to plains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li LIU

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Objective  To observe the changes in oxygen metabolism and sonic hedgehog (SHH signaling pathway in soldiers returning to plains after being stationed and trained for 6 months in a plateau. Methods  Eighty male officers and soldiers, aged 20-30 (22.3±2.9 years, after being stationed and trained on plateau (altitude 3960m for 6 months and returned to plain region (altitude 200m, were selected as subjects. Before their returning to plateau, 6 months after their station and training in plateau, and 2 days after their returning to plain, fasting venous blood samples were collected, the serum levels of superoxide dismutase (SOD, malondialdehyde (MDA and Sonic Hedgehog (SHH were determined by ELISA, the transcription of SHH mRNA was assayed by RT-PCR, and the expressions of SMO and nucleoprotein GLI2 were detected by Western blotting. All the data mentioned above were collected for statistical analysis. Results  As the subjects entered and garrisoned in plateau for 6 months, the activity of SOD decreased and the content of MDA increased significantly (P < 0.05. Both the protein expression and mRNA transcription of SHH were significantly higher after staying in plateau than in plain. When they returned to plain, both parameters decreased significantly, but were still higher than that when they lived in plain (P < 0.01. The expressions of SMO and nucleoprotein GLI2 showed a same tendency of changes. Conclusion  High altitude environment may have a great influence on oxygen metabolism of organism and SHH signal pathway, and the hypoxic environment of high altitude region is one of the conditions in activating the SHH signal pathway.

  17. Improved Coarray Interpolation Algorithms with Additional Orthogonal Constraint for Cyclostationary Signals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinyang Song

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Many modulated signals exhibit a cyclostationarity property, which can be exploited in direction-of-arrival (DOA estimation to effectively eliminate interference and noise. In this paper, our aim is to integrate the cyclostationarity with the spatial domain and enable the algorithm to estimate more sources than sensors. However, DOA estimation with a sparse array is performed in the coarray domain and the holes within the coarray limit the usage of the complete coarray information. In order to use the complete coarray information to increase the degrees-of-freedom (DOFs, sparsity-aware-based methods and the difference coarray interpolation methods have been proposed. In this paper, the coarray interpolation technique is further explored with cyclostationary signals. Besides the difference coarray model and its corresponding Toeplitz completion formulation, we build up a sum coarray model and formulate a Hankel completion problem. In order to further improve the performance of the structured matrix completion, we define the spatial spectrum sampling operations and the derivative (conjugate correlation subspaces, which can be exploited to construct orthogonal constraints for the autocorrelation vectors in the coarray interpolation problem. Prior knowledge of the source interval can also be incorporated into the problem. Simulation results demonstrate that the additional constraints contribute to a remarkable performance improvement.

  18. Spontaneous Resolution of Long-Standing Macular Detachment due to Optic Disc Pit with Significant Visual Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parikakis, Efstratios A; Chatziralli, Irini P; Peponis, Vasileios G; Karagiannis, Dimitrios; Stratos, Aimilianos; Tsiotra, Vasileia A; Mitropoulos, Panagiotis G

    2014-01-01

    To report a case of spontaneous resolution of a long-standing serous macular detachment associated with an optic disc pit, leading to significant visual improvement. A 63-year-old female presented with a 6-month history of blurred vision and micropsia in her left eye. Her best-corrected visual acuity was 6/24 in the left eye, and fundoscopy revealed serous macular detachment associated with optic disc pit, which was confirmed by optical coherence tomography (OCT). The patient was offered vitrectomy as a treatment alternative, but she preferred to be reviewed conservatively. Three years after initial presentation, neither macular detachment nor subretinal fluid was evident in OCT, while the inner segment/outer segment (IS/OS) junction line was intact. Her visual acuity was improved from 6/24 to 6/12 in her left eye, remaining stable at the 6-month follow-up after resolution. We present a case of spontaneous resolution of a long-standing macular detachment associated with an optic disc pit with significant visual improvement, postulating that the integrity of the IS/OS junction line may be a prognostic factor for final visual acuity and suggesting OCT as an indicator of visual prognosis and the probable necessity of a surgical management.

  19. Spontaneous Resolution ofLong-Standing Macular Detachment due to Optic Disc Pit with Significant Visual Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Efstratios A. Parikakis

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: To report a case of spontaneous resolution of a long-standing serous macular detachment associated with an optic disc pit, leading to significant visual improvement. Case Presentation: A 63-year-old female presented with a 6-month history of blurred vision and micropsia in her left eye. Her best-corrected visual acuity was 6/24 in the left eye, and fundoscopy revealed serous macular detachment associated with optic disc pit, which was confirmed by optical coherence tomography (OCT. The patient was offered vitrectomy as a treatment alternative, but she preferred to be reviewed conservatively. Three years after initial presentation, neither macular detachment nor subretinal fluid was evident in OCT, while the inner segment/outer segment (IS/OS junction line was intact. Her visual acuity was improved from 6/24 to 6/12 in her left eye, remaining stable at the 6-month follow-up after resolution. Conclusion: We present a case of spontaneous resolution of a long-standing macular detachment associated with an optic disc pit with significant visual improvement, postulating that the integrity of the IS/OS junction line may be a prognostic factor for final visual acuity and suggesting OCT as an indicator of visual prognosis and the probable necessity of a surgical management.

  20. Mesenchymal Stem Cells Enhance Liver Regeneration via Improving Lipid Accumulation and Hippo Signaling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Liu

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The liver has the potential to regenerate after injury. It is a challenge to improve liver regeneration (LR after liver resection in clinical practice. Bone morrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs have shown to have a role in various liver diseases. To explore the effects of MSCs on LR, we established a model of 70% partial hepatectomy (PHx. Results revealed that infusion of MSCs could improve LR through enhancing cell proliferation and cell growth during the first 2 days after PHx, and MSCs could also restore liver synthesis function. Infusion of MSCs also improved liver lipid accumulation partly via mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR signaling and enhanced lipid β-oxidation support energy for LR. Rapamycin-induced inhibition of mTOR decreased liver lipid accumulation at 24 h after PHx, leading to impaired LR. And after infusion of MSCs, a proinflammatory environment formed in the liver, evidenced by increased expression of IL-6 and IL-1β, and thus the STAT3 and Hippo-YAP pathways were activated to improve cell proliferation. Our results demonstrated the function of MSCs on LR after PHx and provided new evidence for stem cell therapy of liver diseases.

  1. Application of FFTBM with signal mirroring to improve accuracy assessment of MELCOR code

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Saghafi, Mahdi; Ghofrani, Mohammad Bagher; D’Auria, Francesco

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • FFTBM-SM is an improved Fast Fourier Transform Base Method by signal mirroring. • FFTBM-SM has been applied to accuracy assessment of MELCOR code predictions. • The case studied was Station Black-Out accident in PSB-VVER integral test facility. • FFTBM-SM eliminates fluctuations of accuracy indices when signals sharply change. • Accuracy assessment is performed in a more realistic and consistent way by FFTBM-SM. - Abstract: This paper deals with the application of Fast Fourier Transform Base Method (FFTBM) with signal mirroring (FFTBM-SM) to assess accuracy of MELCOR code. This provides deeper insights into how the accuracy of MELCOR code in predictions of thermal-hydraulic parameters varies during transients. The case studied was modeling of Station Black-Out (SBO) accident in PSB-VVER integral test facility by MELCOR code. The accuracy of this thermal-hydraulic modeling was previously quantified using original FFTBM in a few number of time-intervals, based on phenomenological windows of SBO accident. Accuracy indices calculated by original FFTBM in a series of time-intervals unreasonably fluctuate when the investigated signals sharply increase or decrease. In the current study, accuracy of MELCOR code is quantified using FFTBM-SM in a series of increasing time-intervals, and the results are compared to those with original FFTBM. Also, differences between the accuracy indices of original FFTBM and FFTBM-SM are investigated and correction factors calculated to eliminate unphysical effects in original FFTBM. The main findings are: (1) replacing limited number of phenomena-based time-intervals by a series of increasing time-intervals provides deeper insights about accuracy variation of the MELCOR calculations, and (2) application of FFTBM-SM for accuracy evaluation of the MELCOR predictions, provides more reliable results than original FFTBM by eliminating the fluctuations of accuracy indices when experimental signals sharply increase or

  2. Application of FFTBM with signal mirroring to improve accuracy assessment of MELCOR code

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Saghafi, Mahdi [Department of Energy Engineering, Sharif University of Technology, Azadi Avenue, Tehran (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Ghofrani, Mohammad Bagher, E-mail: ghofrani@sharif.edu [Department of Energy Engineering, Sharif University of Technology, Azadi Avenue, Tehran (Iran, Islamic Republic of); D’Auria, Francesco [San Piero a Grado Nuclear Research Group (GRNSPG), University of Pisa, Via Livornese 1291, San Piero a Grado, Pisa (Italy)

    2016-11-15

    Highlights: • FFTBM-SM is an improved Fast Fourier Transform Base Method by signal mirroring. • FFTBM-SM has been applied to accuracy assessment of MELCOR code predictions. • The case studied was Station Black-Out accident in PSB-VVER integral test facility. • FFTBM-SM eliminates fluctuations of accuracy indices when signals sharply change. • Accuracy assessment is performed in a more realistic and consistent way by FFTBM-SM. - Abstract: This paper deals with the application of Fast Fourier Transform Base Method (FFTBM) with signal mirroring (FFTBM-SM) to assess accuracy of MELCOR code. This provides deeper insights into how the accuracy of MELCOR code in predictions of thermal-hydraulic parameters varies during transients. The case studied was modeling of Station Black-Out (SBO) accident in PSB-VVER integral test facility by MELCOR code. The accuracy of this thermal-hydraulic modeling was previously quantified using original FFTBM in a few number of time-intervals, based on phenomenological windows of SBO accident. Accuracy indices calculated by original FFTBM in a series of time-intervals unreasonably fluctuate when the investigated signals sharply increase or decrease. In the current study, accuracy of MELCOR code is quantified using FFTBM-SM in a series of increasing time-intervals, and the results are compared to those with original FFTBM. Also, differences between the accuracy indices of original FFTBM and FFTBM-SM are investigated and correction factors calculated to eliminate unphysical effects in original FFTBM. The main findings are: (1) replacing limited number of phenomena-based time-intervals by a series of increasing time-intervals provides deeper insights about accuracy variation of the MELCOR calculations, and (2) application of FFTBM-SM for accuracy evaluation of the MELCOR predictions, provides more reliable results than original FFTBM by eliminating the fluctuations of accuracy indices when experimental signals sharply increase or

  3. Transcriptomic analysis of the late stages of grapevine (Vitis vinifera cv. Cabernet Sauvignon) berry ripening reveals significant induction of ethylene signaling and flavor pathways in the skin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cramer, Grant R; Ghan, Ryan; Schlauch, Karen A; Tillett, Richard L; Heymann, Hildegarde; Ferrarini, Alberto; Delledonne, Massimo; Zenoni, Sara; Fasoli, Marianna; Pezzotti, Mario

    2014-12-19

    Grapevine berry, a nonclimacteric fruit, has three developmental stages; the last one is when berry color and sugar increase. Flavors derived from terpenoid and fatty acid metabolism develop at the very end of this ripening stage. The transcriptomic response of pulp and skin of Cabernet Sauvignon berries in the late stages of ripening between 22 and 37 °Brix was assessed using whole-genome micorarrays. The transcript abundance of approximately 18,000 genes changed with °Brix and tissue type. There were a large number of changes in many gene ontology (GO) categories involving metabolism, signaling and abiotic stress. GO categories reflecting tissue differences were overrepresented in photosynthesis, isoprenoid metabolism and pigment biosynthesis. Detailed analysis of the interaction of the skin and pulp with °Brix revealed that there were statistically significantly higher abundances of transcripts changing with °Brix in the skin that were involved in ethylene signaling, isoprenoid and fatty acid metabolism. Many transcripts were peaking around known optimal fruit stages for flavor production. The transcript abundance of approximately two-thirds of the AP2/ERF superfamily of transcription factors changed during these developmental stages. The transcript abundance of a unique clade of ERF6-type transcription factors had the largest changes in the skin and clustered with genes involved in ethylene, senescence, and fruit flavor production including ACC oxidase, terpene synthases, and lipoxygenases. The transcript abundance of important transcription factors involved in fruit ripening was also higher in the skin. A detailed analysis of the transcriptome dynamics during late stages of ripening of grapevine berries revealed that these berries went through massive transcriptional changes in gene ontology categories involving chemical signaling and metabolism in both the pulp and skin, particularly in the skin. Changes in the transcript abundance of genes involved in

  4. Gaseous signalling molecule SO2 via Hippo‑MST pathway to improve myocardial fibrosis of diabetic rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Maojun; Liu, Shengquan; Tan, Wenting; Tang, Fen; Long, Junrong; Li, Zining; Liang, Biao; Chu, Chun; Yang, Jun

    2017-12-01

    MST pathway‑associated proteins, including CHOP, GRP94, MST1 and MST2, were significantly upregulated. By contrast, these above‑mentioned changes were reversed by SO2 treatment. Compared with STZ group, the HDX group had a further increase of myocardial fibrosis and apoptosis, while there were no statistically significant differences in the expression of Bax/Bcl‑2, caspase‑3, caspase‑9 and ERS and Hippo‑MST pathway‑associated proteins. The results of the present study demonstrated that the gaseous signal molecule SO2 can effectively improve the myocardial fibrosis of diabetic rats, and its mechanism may be associated with reduced apoptosis and ERS by downregulated Hippo‑MST pathway.

  5. Performance of the Sellick maneuver significantly improves when residents and trained nurses use a visually interactive guidance device in simulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Connor, Christopher W; Saffary, Roya; Feliz, Eddy

    2013-01-01

    We examined the proper performance of the Sellick maneuver, a maneuver used to reduce the risk of aspiration of stomach contents during induction of general anesthesia, using a novel device that measures and visualizes the force applied to the cricoid cartilage using thin-film force sensitive resistors in a form suitable for in vivo use. Performance was tested in three stages with twenty anaesthesiology residents and twenty trained operating room nurses. Firstly, subjects applied force to the cricoid cartilage as was customary to them. Secondly, subjects used the device to guide the application of that force. Thirdly, subjects were again asked to perform the manoeuvre without visual guidance. Each test lasted 1 min and the amount of force applied was measured throughout. Overall, the Sellick maneuver was often not applied properly, with large variance between individual subjects. Performance and inter-subject consistency improved to a very highly significant degree when subjects were able to use the device as a visual guide (p < 0.001). Subsequent significant improvements in performances during the last, unguided test demonstrated that the device initiated learning. (paper)

  6. Performance of the Sellick maneuver significantly improves when residents and trained nurses use a visually interactive guidance device in simulation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Connor, Christopher W; Saffary, Roya; Feliz, Eddy [Department of Anesthesiology Boston Medical Center, Boston, MA (United States)

    2013-12-15

    We examined the proper performance of the Sellick maneuver, a maneuver used to reduce the risk of aspiration of stomach contents during induction of general anesthesia, using a novel device that measures and visualizes the force applied to the cricoid cartilage using thin-film force sensitive resistors in a form suitable for in vivo use. Performance was tested in three stages with twenty anaesthesiology residents and twenty trained operating room nurses. Firstly, subjects applied force to the cricoid cartilage as was customary to them. Secondly, subjects used the device to guide the application of that force. Thirdly, subjects were again asked to perform the manoeuvre without visual guidance. Each test lasted 1 min and the amount of force applied was measured throughout. Overall, the Sellick maneuver was often not applied properly, with large variance between individual subjects. Performance and inter-subject consistency improved to a very highly significant degree when subjects were able to use the device as a visual guide (p < 0.001). Subsequent significant improvements in performances during the last, unguided test demonstrated that the device initiated learning. (paper)

  7. Gating in time domain as a tool for improving the signal-to-noise ratio of beam transfer function measurements

    CERN Document Server

    Oeftiger, U; Caspers, Fritz

    1992-01-01

    For the measurement of Beam Transfer Functions the signal-to-noise ratio is of great importance. In order to get a reasonable quality of the measured data one may apply averaging and smoothing. In the following another technique called time gating to improve the quality of the measurement will be described. By this technique the measurement data are Fourier transformed and then modified in time domain. Tune gating suppresses signal contributions that are correlated to a time interval when no interesting information is expected. Afterivards an inverse Fourier transform leads to data in frequency domain with an improved signal to noise ratio.

  8. Time-frequency analysis of non-stationary fusion plasma signals using an improved Hilbert-Huang transform

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, Yangqing; Tan, Yi; Xie, Huiqiao; Wang, Wenhao; Gao, Zhe

    2014-01-01

    An improved Hilbert-Huang transform method is developed to the time-frequency analysis of non-stationary signals in tokamak plasmas. Maximal overlap discrete wavelet packet transform rather than wavelet packet transform is proposed as a preprocessor to decompose a signal into various narrow-band components. Then, a correlation coefficient based selection method is utilized to eliminate the irrelevant intrinsic mode functions obtained from empirical mode decomposition of those narrow-band components. Subsequently, a time varying vector autoregressive moving average model instead of Hilbert spectral analysis is performed to compute the Hilbert spectrum, i.e., a three-dimensional time-frequency distribution of the signal. The feasibility and effectiveness of the improved Hilbert-Huang transform method is demonstrated by analyzing a non-stationary simulated signal and actual experimental signals in fusion plasmas

  9. Xanomeline suppresses excessive pro-inflammatory cytokine responses through neural signal-mediated pathways and improves survival in lethal inflammation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosas-Ballina, Mauricio; Ferrer, Sergio Valdés; Dancho, Meghan; Ochani, Mahendar; Katz, David; Cheng, Kai Fan; Olofsson, Peder S.; Chavan, Sangeeta S.; Al-Abed, Yousef; Tracey, Kevin J.; Pavlov, Valentin A.

    2014-01-01

    Inflammatory conditions characterized by excessive immune cell activation and cytokine release, are associated with bidirectional immune system-brain communication, underlying sickness behavior and other physiological responses. The vagus nerve has an important role in this communication by conveying sensory information to the brain, and brain-derived immunoregulatory signals that suppress peripheral cytokine levels and inflammation. Brain muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR)-mediated cholinergic signaling has been implicated in this regulation. However, the possibility of controlling inflammation by peripheral administration of centrally-acting mAChR agonists is unexplored. To provide insight we used the centrally-acting M1 mAChR agonist xanomeline, previously developed in the context of Alzheimer’s disease and schizophrenia. Intraperitoneal administration of xanomeline significantly suppressed serum and splenic TNF levels, alleviated sickness behavior, and increased survival during lethal murine endotoxemia. The anti-inflammatory effects of xanomeline were brain mAChR-mediated and required intact vagus nerve and splenic nerve signaling. The anti-inflammatory efficacy of xanomeline was retained for at least 20h, associated with alterations in splenic lymphocyte, and dendritic cell proportions, and decreased splenocyte responsiveness to endotoxin. These results highlight an important role of the M1 mAChR in a neural circuitry to spleen in which brain cholinergic activation lowers peripheral pro-inflammatory cytokines to levels favoring survival. The therapeutic efficacy of xanomeline was also manifested by significantly improved survival in preclinical settings of severe sepsis. These findings are of interest for strategizing novel therapeutic approaches in inflammatory diseases. PMID:25063706

  10. Combination of blood tests for significant fibrosis and cirrhosis improves the assessment of liver-prognosis in chronic hepatitis C.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boursier, J; Brochard, C; Bertrais, S; Michalak, S; Gallois, Y; Fouchard-Hubert, I; Oberti, F; Rousselet, M-C; Calès, P

    2014-07-01

    Recent longitudinal studies have emphasised the prognostic value of noninvasive tests of liver fibrosis and cross-sectional studies have shown their combination significantly improves diagnostic accuracy. To compare the prognostic accuracy of six blood fibrosis tests and liver biopsy, and evaluate if test combination improves the liver-prognosis assessment in chronic hepatitis C (CHC). A total of 373 patients with compensated CHC, liver biopsy (Metavir F) and blood tests targeting fibrosis (APRI, FIB4, Fibrotest, Hepascore, FibroMeter) or cirrhosis (CirrhoMeter) were included. Significant liver-related events (SLRE) and liver-related deaths were recorded during follow-up (started the day of biopsy). During the median follow-up of 9.5 years (3508 person-years), 47 patients had a SLRE and 23 patients died from liver-related causes. For the prediction of first SLRE, most blood tests allowed higher prognostication than Metavir F [Harrell C-index: 0.811 (95% CI: 0.751-0.868)] with a significant increase for FIB4: 0.879 [0.832-0.919] (P = 0.002), FibroMeter: 0.870 [0.812-0.922] (P = 0.005) and APRI: 0.861 [0.813-0.902] (P = 0.039). Multivariate analysis identified FibroMeter, CirrhoMeter and sustained viral response as independent predictors of first SLRE. CirrhoMeter was the only independent predictor of liver-related death. The combination of FibroMeter and CirrhoMeter classifications into a new FM/CM classification improved the liver-prognosis assessment compared to Metavir F staging or single tests by identifying five subgroups of patients with significantly different prognoses. Some blood fibrosis tests are more accurate than liver biopsy for determining liver prognosis in CHC. A new combination of two complementary blood tests, one targeted for fibrosis and the other for cirrhosis, optimises assessment of liver-prognosis. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Cancelable ECG biometrics using GLRT and performance improvement using guided filter with irreversible guide signal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hanvit; Minh Phuong Nguyen; Se Young Chun

    2017-07-01

    Biometrics such as ECG provides a convenient and powerful security tool to verify or identify an individual. However, one important drawback of biometrics is that it is irrevocable. In other words, biometrics cannot be re-used practically once it is compromised. Cancelable biometrics has been investigated to overcome this drawback. In this paper, we propose a cancelable ECG biometrics by deriving a generalized likelihood ratio test (GLRT) detector from a composite hypothesis testing in randomly projected domain. Since it is common to observe performance degradation for cancelable biometrics, we also propose a guided filtering (GF) with irreversible guide signal that is a non-invertibly transformed signal of ECG authentication template. We evaluated our proposed method using ECG-ID database with 89 subjects. Conventional Euclidean detector with original ECG template yielded 93.9% PD1 (detection probability at 1% FAR) while Euclidean detector with 10% compressed ECG (1/10 of the original data size) yielded 90.8% PD1. Our proposed GLRT detector with 10% compressed ECG yielded 91.4%, which is better than Euclidean with the same compressed ECG. GF with our proposed irreversible ECG template further improved the performance of our GLRT with 10% compressed ECG up to 94.3%, which is higher than Euclidean detector with original ECG. Lastly, we showed that our proposed cancelable ECG biometrics practically met cancelable biometrics criteria such as efficiency, re-usability, diversity and non-invertibility.

  12. An improved discriminative filter bank selection approach for motor imagery EEG signal classification using mutual information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Shiu; Sharma, Alok; Tsunoda, Tatsuhiko

    2017-12-28

    Common spatial pattern (CSP) has been an effective technique for feature extraction in electroencephalography (EEG) based brain computer interfaces (BCIs). However, motor imagery EEG signal feature extraction using CSP generally depends on the selection of the frequency bands to a great extent. In this study, we propose a mutual information based frequency band selection approach. The idea of the proposed method is to utilize the information from all the available channels for effectively selecting the most discriminative filter banks. CSP features are extracted from multiple overlapping sub-bands. An additional sub-band has been introduced that cover the wide frequency band (7-30 Hz) and two different types of features are extracted using CSP and common spatio-spectral pattern techniques, respectively. Mutual information is then computed from the extracted features of each of these bands and the top filter banks are selected for further processing. Linear discriminant analysis is applied to the features extracted from each of the filter banks. The scores are fused together, and classification is done using support vector machine. The proposed method is evaluated using BCI Competition III dataset IVa, BCI Competition IV dataset I and BCI Competition IV dataset IIb, and it outperformed all other competing methods achieving the lowest misclassification rate and the highest kappa coefficient on all three datasets. Introducing a wide sub-band and using mutual information for selecting the most discriminative sub-bands, the proposed method shows improvement in motor imagery EEG signal classification.

  13. Soybean-Derived Phytoalexins Improve Cognitive Function through Activation of Nrf2/HO-1 Signaling Pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji Yeon Seo

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available As soy-derived glyceollins are known to induce antioxidant enzymes in various types of cells and tissues, we hypothesized that the compounds could protect neurons from damage due to reactive oxygen species (ROS. In order to examine the neuroprotective effect of glyceollins, primary cortical neurons collected from mice and mouse hippocampal HT22 cells were challenged with glutamate. Glyceollins attenuated glutamate-induced cytotoxicity in primary cortical neuron isolated from mice carrying wild-type nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2-like 2 (Nrf2, but the compounds were ineffective in those isolated from Nrf2 knockout mice, suggesting the involvement of the Nrf2 signaling pathway in glyceollin-mediated neuroprotection. Furthermore, the inhibition of heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1, a major downstream enzyme of Nrf2, abolished the suppressive effect of glyceollins against glutamate-induced ROS production and cytotoxicity, confirming that activation of HO-1 by glyceollins is responsible for the neuroprotection. To examine whether glyceollins also improve cognitive ability, mice pretreated with glyceollins were challenged with scopolamine and subjected to behavioral tests. Glyceollins attenuated scopolamine-induced cognitive impairment of mice, but failed to enhance memory in Nrf2 knockout mice, suggesting that the memory-enhancing effect is also mediated by the Nrf2 signaling pathway. Overall, glyceollins showed neuroprotection against glutamate-induced damage, and attenuated scopolamine-induced memory deficits in an Nrf2-dependent manner.

  14. Supplemental Blue LED Lighting Array to Improve the Signal Quality in Hyperspectral Imaging of Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne-Katrin Mahlein

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Hyperspectral imaging systems used in plant science or agriculture often have suboptimal signal-to-noise ratio in the blue region (400–500 nm of the electromagnetic spectrum. Typically there are two principal reasons for this effect, the low sensitivity of the imaging sensor and the low amount of light available from the illuminating source. In plant science, the blue region contains relevant information about the physiology and the health status of a plant. We report on the improvement in sensitivity of a hyperspectral imaging system in the blue region of the spectrum by using supplemental illumination provided by an array of high brightness light emitting diodes (LEDs with an emission peak at 470 nm.

  15. Induction Based Training leads to Highly Significant Improvements of Objective and Subjective Suturing Ability in Junior Doctors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin Garry

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: Simulation based training has shown to be of benefit in the education of medical students. However, the impact of induction based clinical simulation on surgical ability of qualified doctors remains unclear.The aim of this study was to establish if a 60 minute teaching session integrated into an Emergency Medicine speciality induction program produces statistically significant improvements in objective and subjective suturing abilities of junior doctors commencing an Emergency Medicine rotation.Methods: The objective suturing abilities of 16 Foundation Year Two doctors were analysed using a validated OSATs scale prior to a novel teaching intervention. The doctors then undertook an intensive hour long workshop receiving one to one feedback before undergoing repeat OSATs assessment.Subjective ability was measured using a 5 point likert scale and self-assessed competency reporting interrupted suturing before and after the intervention. Photographs of wound closure before and after the intervention were recorded for further blinded assessment of impact of intervention. A survey regarding continued ability was repeated at four months following the intervention. The study took place on 7/12/16 during the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust Emergency Medicine induction in the Royal Victoria Hospital Belfast. The hospital is a regional level 1 trauma centre that has annual departmental attendances in excess of 200,000.All new junior doctors commencing the Emergency Medicine rotation were invited to partake in the study. All 16 agreed. The group consisted of a mixture of undergraduate and postgraduate medicaldoctors who all had 16 months experience working in a variety of medical or surgical jobs previously.Results: Following the teaching intervention objective and subjective abilities in interrupted suturing showed statistically significant improvement (P>0.005. Self-reporting of competency of independently suturingwounds improved from 50

  16. Etk/Bmx regulates proteinase-activated-receptor1 (PAR1 in breast cancer invasion: signaling partners, hierarchy and physiological significance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irit Cohen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: While protease-activated-receptor 1 (PAR(1 plays a central role in tumor progression, little is known about the cell signaling involved. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We show here the impact of PAR(1 cellular activities using both an orthotopic mouse mammary xenograft and a colorectal-liver metastasis model in vivo, with biochemical analyses in vitro. Large and highly vascularized tumors were generated by cells over-expressing wt hPar1, Y397Z hPar1, with persistent signaling, or Y381A hPar1 mutant constructs. In contrast, cells over-expressing the truncated form of hPar1, which lacks the cytoplasmic tail, developed small or no tumors, similar to cells expressing empty vector or control untreated cells. Antibody array membranes revealed essential hPar1 partners including Etk/Bmx and Shc. PAR(1 activation induces Etk/Bmx and Shc binding to the receptor C-tail to form a complex. Y/A mutations in the PAR(1 C-tail did not prevent Shc-PAR(1 association, but enhanced the number of liver metastases compared with the already increased metastases obtained with wt hPar1. We found that Etk/Bmx first binds via the PH domain to a region of seven residues, located between C378-S384 in PAR(1 C-tail, enabling subsequent Shc association. Importantly, expression of the hPar1-7A mutant form (substituted A, residues 378-384, which is incapable of binding Etk/Bmx, resulted in inhibition of invasion through Matrigel-coated membranes. Similarly, knocking down Etk/Bmx inhibited PAR(1-induced MDA-MB-435 cell migration. In addition, intact spheroid morphogenesis of MCF10A cells is markedly disrupted by the ectopic expression of wt hPar1. In contrast, the forced expression of the hPar1-7A mutant results in normal ball-shaped spheroids. Thus, by preventing binding of Etk/Bmx to PAR(1 -C-tail, hPar1 oncogenic properties are abrogated. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This is the first demonstration that a cytoplasmic portion of the PAR(1 C-tail functions as a scaffold

  17. Naringin Improves Neuronal Insulin Signaling, Brain Mitochondrial Function, and Cognitive Function in High-Fat Diet-Induced Obese Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Dongmei; Yan, Junqiang; Chen, Jing; Wu, Wenlan; Zhu, Xiaoying; Wang, Yong

    2015-10-01

    The epidemic and experimental studies have confirmed that the obesity induced by high-fat diet not only caused neuronal insulin resistance, but also induced brain mitochondrial dysfunction as well as learning impairment in mice. Naringin has been reported to posses biological functions which are beneficial to human cognitions, but its protective effects on HFD-induced cognitive deficits and underlying mechanisms have not been well characterized. In the present study Male C57BL/6 J mice were fed either a control or high-fat diet for 20 weeks and then randomized into four groups treated with their respective diets including control diet, control diet + naringin, high-fat diet (HFD), and high-fat diet + naringin (HFDN). The behavioral performance was assessed by using novel object recognition test and Morris water maze test. Hippocampal mitochondrial parameters were analyzed. Then the protein levels of insulin signaling pathway and the AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) in the hippocampus were detected by Western blot method. Our results showed that oral administration of naringin significantly improved the learning and memory abilities as evidenced by increasing recognition index by 52.5% in the novel object recognition test and inducing a 1.05-fold increase in the crossing-target number in the probe test, and ameliorated mitochondrial dysfunction in mice caused by HFD consumption. Moreover, naringin significantly enhanced insulin signaling pathway as indicated by a 34.5% increase in the expression levels of IRS-1, a 47.8% decrease in the p-IRS-1, a 1.43-fold increase in the p-Akt, and a 1.89-fold increase in the p-GSK-3β in the hippocampus of the HFDN mice versus HFD mice. Furthermore, the AMPK activity significantly increased in the naringin-treated (100 mg kg(-1) d(-1)) group. These findings suggest that an enhancement in insulin signaling and a decrease in mitochondrial dysfunction through the activation of AMPK may be one of the mechanisms that naringin

  18. Prognostic significance and therapeutic potential of the activation of anaplastic lymphoma kinase/protein kinase B/mammalian target of rapamycin signaling pathway in anaplastic large cell lymphoma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao, Ju; Yin, Minzhi; Zhu, Yiping; Gu, Ling; Zhang, Yanle; Li, Qiang; Jia, Cangsong; Ma, Zhigui

    2013-01-01

    Activation of the protein kinase B/mammalian target of rapamycin (AKT/mTOR) pathway has been demonstrated to be involved in nucleophosmin-anaplastic lymphoma kinase (NPM-ALK)-mediated tumorigenesis in anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) and correlated with unfavorable outcome in certain types of other cancers. However, the prognostic value of AKT/mTOR activation in ALCL remains to be fully elucidated. In the present study, we aim to address this question from a clinical perspective by comparing the expressions of the AKT/mTOR signaling molecules in ALCL patients and exploring the therapeutic significance of targeting the AKT/mTOR pathway in ALCL. A cohort of 103 patients with ALCL was enrolled in the study. Expression of ALK fusion proteins and the AKT/mTOR signaling phosphoproteins was studied by immunohistochemical (IHC) staining. The pathogenic role of ALK fusion proteins and the therapeutic significance of targeting the ATK/mTOR signaling pathway were further investigated in vitro study with an ALK + ALCL cell line and the NPM-ALK transformed BaF3 cells. ALK expression was detected in 60% of ALCLs, of which 79% exhibited the presence of NPM-ALK, whereas the remaining 21% expressed variant-ALK fusions. Phosphorylation of AKT, mTOR, 4E-binding protein-1 (4E-BP1), and 70 kDa ribosomal protein S6 kinase polypeptide 1 (p70S6K1) was detected in 76%, 80%, 91%, and 93% of ALCL patients, respectively. Both phospho-AKT (p-AKT) and p-mTOR were correlated to ALK expression, and p-mTOR was closely correlated to p-AKT. Both p-4E-BP1 and p-p70S6K1 were correlated to p-mTOR, but were not correlated to the expression of ALK and p-AKT. Clinically, ALK + ALCL occurred more commonly in younger patients, and ALK + ALCL patients had a much better prognosis than ALK-ALCL cases. However, expression of p-AKT, p-mTOR, p-4E-BP1, or p-p70S6K1 did not have an impact on the clinical outcome. Overexpression of NPM-ALK in a nonmalignant murine pro-B lymphoid cell line, BaF3, induced the

  19. The European Academy laparoscopic “Suturing Training and Testing’’ (SUTT) significantly improves surgeons’ performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sleiman, Z.; Tanos, V.; Van Belle, Y.; Carvalho, J.L.; Campo, R.

    2015-01-01

    The efficiency of suturing training and testing (SUTT) model by laparoscopy was evaluated, measuring the suturingskill acquisition of trainee gynecologists at the beginning and at the end of a teaching course. During a workshop organized by the European Academy of Gynecological Surgery (EAGS), 25 participants with three different experience levels in laparoscopy (minor, intermediate and major) performed the 4 exercises of the SUTT model (Ex 1: both hands stitching and continuous suturing, Ex 2: right hand stitching and intracorporeal knotting, Ex 3: left hand stitching and intracorporeal knotting, Ex 4: dominant hand stitching, tissue approximation and intracorporeal knotting). The time needed to perform the exercises is recorded for each trainee and group and statistical analysis used to note the differences. Overall, all trainees achieved significant improvement in suturing time (p psychomotor skills, surgery, teaching, training suturing model. PMID:26977264

  20. High-intensity interval training (swimming) significantly improves the adverse metabolism and comorbidities in diet-induced obese mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Motta, Victor F; Aguila, Marcia B; Mandarim-DE-Lacerda, Carlos A

    2016-05-01

    Controlling obesity and other comorbidities in the population is a challenge in modern society. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) combines short periods of high-intensity exercise with long recovery periods or a low-intensity exercise. The aim was to assess the impact of HIIT in the context of diet-induced obesity in the animal model. C57BL/6 mice were fed one of the two diets: standard chow (lean group [LE]) or a high-fat diet (obese group [OB]). After twelve weeks, the animals were divided into non-trained groups (LE-NT and OB-NT) and trained groups (LE-T and OB-T), and began an exercise protocol. For biochemical analysis of inflammatory and lipid profile, we used a colorimetric enzymatic method and an automatic spectrophotometer. One-way ANOVA was used for statistical analysis of the experimental groups with Holm-Sidak post-hoc Test. Two-way ANOVA analyzed the interactions between diet and HIIT protocol. HIIT leads to significant reductions in body mass, blood glucose, glucose tolerance and hepatic lipid profile in T-groups compared to NT-groups. HIIT was able to reduce plasma levels of inflammatory cytokines. Additionally, HIIT improves the insulin immunodensity in the islets, reduces the adiposity and the hepatic steatosis in the T-groups. HIIT improves beta-oxidation and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR)-alpha and reduces lipogenesis and PPAR-gamma levels in the liver. In skeletal muscle, HIIT improves PPAR-alpha and glucose transporter-4 and reduces PPAR-gamma levels. HIIT leads to attenuate the adverse effects caused by a chronic ingestion of a high-fat diet.

  1. Codon Optimization Significantly Improves the Expression Level of α-Amylase Gene from Bacillus licheniformis in Pichia pastoris

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian-Rong Wang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available α-Amylase as an important industrial enzyme has been widely used in starch processing, detergent, and paper industries. To improve expression efficiency of recombinant α-amylase from Bacillus licheniformis (B. licheniformis, the α-amylase gene from B. licheniformis was optimized according to the codon usage of Pichia pastoris (P. pastoris and expressed in P. pastoris. Totally, the codons encoding 305 amino acids were optimized in which a total of 328 nucleotides were changed and the G+C content was increased from 47.6 to 49.2%. The recombinants were cultured in 96-deep-well microplates and screened by a new plate assay method. Compared with the wild-type gene, the optimized gene is expressed at a significantly higher level in P. pastoris after methanol induction for 168 h in 5- and 50-L bioreactor with the maximum activity of 8100 and 11000 U/mL, which was 2.31- and 2.62-fold higher than that by wild-type gene. The improved expression level makes the enzyme a good candidate for α-amylase production in industrial use.

  2. Raman Spectra of Nanodiamonds: New Treatment Procedure Directed for Improved Raman Signal Marker Detection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raoul R. Nigmatullin

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Detonation nanodiamonds (NDs have shown to be promising agents in several industries, ranging from electronic to biomedical applications. These NDs are characterized by small particle size ranging from 3 to 6 nm, while having a reactive surface and a stable inert core. Nanodiamonds can exhibit novel intrinsic properties such as fluorescence, high refractive index, and unique Raman signal making them very attractive imaging agents. In this work, we used several nanodiamond preparations for Raman spectroscopic studies. We exposed these nanodiamonds to increasing temperature treatments at constant heating rates (425–575°C aiding graphite release. We wanted to correlate changes in the nanodiamond surface and properties with Raman signal which could be used as a detection marker. These observations would hold potential utility in biomedical imaging applications. First, the procedure of optimal linear smoothing was applied successfully to eliminate the high-frequency fluctuations and to extract the smoothed Raman spectra. After that we applied the secondary Fourier transform as the fitting function based on some significant set of frequencies. The remnant noise was described in terms of the beta-distribution function. We expect this data treatment to provide better results in biomolecule tracking using nanodiamond base Raman labeling.

  3. Improved statistical signal detection in pharmacovigilance by combining multiple strength-of-evidence aspects in vigiRank.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caster, Ola; Juhlin, Kristina; Watson, Sarah; Norén, G Niklas

    2014-08-01

    Detection of unknown risks with marketed medicines is key to securing the optimal care of individual patients and to reducing the societal burden from adverse drug reactions. Large collections of individual case reports remain the primary source of information and require effective analytics to guide clinical assessors towards likely drug safety signals. Disproportionality analysis is based solely on aggregate numbers of reports and naively disregards report quality and content. However, these latter features are the very fundament of the ensuing clinical assessment. Our objective was to develop and evaluate a data-driven screening algorithm for emerging drug safety signals that accounts for report quality and content. vigiRank is a predictive model for emerging safety signals, here implemented with shrinkage logistic regression to identify predictive variables and estimate their respective contributions. The variables considered for inclusion capture different aspects of strength of evidence, including quality and clinical content of individual reports, as well as trends in time and geographic spread. A reference set of 264 positive controls (historical safety signals from 2003 to 2007) and 5,280 negative controls (pairs of drugs and adverse events not listed in the Summary of Product Characteristics of that drug in 2012) was used for model fitting and evaluation; the latter used fivefold cross-validation to protect against over-fitting. All analyses were performed on a reconstructed version of VigiBase(®) as of 31 December 2004, at around which time most safety signals in our reference set were emerging. The following aspects of strength of evidence were selected for inclusion into vigiRank: the numbers of informative and recent reports, respectively; disproportional reporting; the number of reports with free-text descriptions of the case; and the geographic spread of reporting. vigiRank offered a statistically significant improvement in area under the receiver

  4. Timing of CSF-1/CSF-1R signaling blockade is critical to improving responses to CTLA-4 based immunotherapy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmgaard, Rikke B.; Brachfeld, Alexandra; Gasmi, Billel; Jones, David R.; Mattar, Marissa; Doman, Thompson; Murphy, Mary; Schaer, David; Wolchok, Jedd D.; Merghoub, Taha

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Colony stimulating factor-1 (CSF-1) is produced by a variety of cancers and recruits myeloid cells that suppress antitumor immunity, including myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs.) Here, we show that both CSF-1 and its receptor (CSF-1R) are frequently expressed in tumors from cancer patients, and that this expression correlates with tumor-infiltration of MDSCs. Furthermore, we demonstrate that these tumor-infiltrating MDSCs are highly immunosuppressive but can be reprogrammed toward an antitumor phenotype in vitro upon CSF-1/CSF-1R signaling blockade. Supporting these findings, we show that inhibition of CSF-1/CSF-1R signaling using an anti-CSF-1R antibody can regulate both the number and the function of MDSCs in murine tumors in vivo. We further find that treatment with anti-CSF-1R antibody induces antitumor T-cell responses and tumor regression in multiple tumor models when combined with CTLA-4 blockade therapy. However, this occurs only when administered after or concurrent with CTLA-4 blockade, indicating that timing of each therapeutic intervention is critical for optimal antitumor responses. Importantly, MDSCs present within murine tumors after CTLA-4 blockade showed increased expression of CSF-1R and were capable of suppressing T cell proliferation, and CSF-1/CSF-1R expression in the human tumors was not reduced after treatment with CTLA-4 blockade immunotherapy. Taken together, our findings suggest that CSF-1R-expressing MDSCs can be targeted to modulate the tumor microenvironment and that timing of CSF-1/CSF-1R signaling blockade is critical to improving responses to checkpoint based immunotherapy. Significance: Infiltration by immunosuppressive myeloid cells contributes to tumor immune escape and can render patients resistant or less responsive to therapeutic intervention with checkpoint blocking antibodies. Our data demonstrate that blocking CSF-1/CSF-1R signaling using a monoclonal antibody directed to CSF-1R can regulate both the number

  5. Intrinsic low pass filtering improves signal-to-noise ratio in critical-point flexure biosensors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jain, Ankit; Alam, Muhammad Ashraful

    2014-01-01

    A flexure biosensor consists of a suspended beam and a fixed bottom electrode. The adsorption of the target biomolecules on the beam changes its stiffness and results in change of beam's deflection. It is now well established that the sensitivity of sensor is maximized close to the pull-in instability point, where effective stiffness of the beam vanishes. The question: “Do the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and the limit-of-detection (LOD) also improve close to the instability point?”, however remains unanswered. In this article, we systematically analyze the noise response to evaluate SNR and establish LOD of critical-point flexure sensors. We find that a flexure sensor acts like an effective low pass filter close to the instability point due to its relatively small resonance frequency, and rejects high frequency noise, leading to improved SNR and LOD. We believe that our conclusions should establish the uniqueness and the technological relevance of critical-point biosensors.

  6. Melatonin successfully rescues hippocampal bioenergetics and improves cognitive function following drug intoxication by promoting Nrf2-ARE signaling activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Li-You; Renn, Ting-Yi; Liao, Wen-Chieh; Mai, Fu-Der; Ho, Ying-Jui; Hsiao, George; Lee, Ai-Wei; Chang, Hung-Ming

    2017-09-01

    Prolonged exposure to gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) would cause drug intoxication in which impaired cognitive function results from enhanced hippocampal oxidative stress may serve as a major symptom in this deficiency. Considering melatonin possesses significant anti-oxidative efficacy, this study aimed to determine whether melatonin would successfully promote the nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 and antioxidant responsive element (Nrf2-ARE) signaling, depress oxidative stress, and rescue hippocampal bioenergetics and cognitive function following drug intoxication injury. Adolescent rats subjected to 10 days of GHB were received melatonin at doses of either 10 or 100 mg/kg. Time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry, biochemical assay, quantitative histochemistry, [ 14 C]-2-deoxyglucose analysis, together with Morris water maze were employed to detect the molecular signaling, oxidative status, bioenergetic level, as well as the cognitive performances, respectively. Results indicated that in GHB-intoxicated rats, enhanced oxidative stress, increased cholesterol level, and decreased anti-oxidative enzymes activities were detected in hippocampal regions. Intense oxidative stress paralleled well with reduced bioenergetics and poor performance in behavioral testing. However, in rats treated with melatonin following GHB intoxication, all above parameters and cognitive function were gradually returned to nearly normal levels. Melatonin also remarkably promoted the translocation of Nrf2 from cytoplasm to nucleus in a dose-dependent manner, thereby increased the Nrf2-ARE signaling-related downstream anti-oxidative enzymes activities. As melatonin effectively rescues hippocampal bioenergetics through depressing the oxidative stress by promoting Nrf2-ARE molecular machinery, this study thus highlights for the first time that clinical use of melatonin may serve as a therapeutic strategy to improve the cognitive function in unsuspecting victims suffered from

  7. Complete Au@ZnO core-shell nanoparticles with enhanced plasmonic absorption enabling significantly improved photocatalysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yiqiang; Sun, Yugang; Zhang, Tao; Chen, Guozhu; Zhang, Fengshou; Liu, Dilong; Cai, Weiping; Li, Yue; Yang, Xianfeng; Li, Cuncheng

    2016-05-01

    Nanostructured ZnO exhibits high chemical stability and unique optical properties, representing a promising candidate among photocatalysts in the field of environmental remediation and solar energy conversion. However, ZnO only absorbs the UV light, which accounts for less than 5% of total solar irradiation, significantly limiting its applications. In this article, we report a facile and efficient approach to overcome the poor wettability between ZnO and Au by carefully modulating the surface charge density on Au nanoparticles (NPs), enabling rapid synthesis of Au@ZnO core-shell NPs at room temperature. The resulting Au@ZnO core-shell NPs exhibit a significantly enhanced plasmonic absorption in the visible range due to the Au NP cores. They also show a significantly improved photocatalytic performance in comparison with their single-component counterparts, i.e., the Au NPs and ZnO NPs. Moreover, the high catalytic activity of the as-synthesized Au@ZnO core-shell NPs can be maintained even after many cycles of photocatalytic reaction. Our results shed light on the fact that the Au@ZnO core-shell NPs represent a promising class of candidates for applications in plasmonics, surface-enhanced spectroscopy, light harvest devices, solar energy conversion, and degradation of organic pollutants.Nanostructured ZnO exhibits high chemical stability and unique optical properties, representing a promising candidate among photocatalysts in the field of environmental remediation and solar energy conversion. However, ZnO only absorbs the UV light, which accounts for less than 5% of total solar irradiation, significantly limiting its applications. In this article, we report a facile and efficient approach to overcome the poor wettability between ZnO and Au by carefully modulating the surface charge density on Au nanoparticles (NPs), enabling rapid synthesis of Au@ZnO core-shell NPs at room temperature. The resulting Au@ZnO core-shell NPs exhibit a significantly enhanced plasmonic

  8. Combat-related intradural gunshot wound to the thoracic spine: significant improvement and neurologic recovery following bullet removal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Louwes, Thijs M; Ward, William H; Lee, Kendall H; Freedman, Brett A

    2015-02-01

    The vast majority of combat-related penetrating spinal injuries from gunshot wounds result in severe or complete neurological deficit. Treatment is based on neurological status, the presence of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) fistulas, and local effects of any retained fragment(s). We present a case of a 46-year-old male who sustained a spinal gunshot injury from a 7.62-mm AK-47 round that became lodged within the subarachnoid space at T9-T10. He immediately suffered complete motor and sensory loss. By 24-48 hours post-injury, he had recovered lower extremity motor function fully but continued to have severe sensory loss (posterior cord syndrome). On post-injury day 2, he was evacuated from the combat theater and underwent a T9 laminectomy, extraction of the bullet, and dural laceration repair. At surgery, the traumatic durotomy was widened and the bullet, which was laying on the dorsal surface of the spinal cord, was removed. The dura was closed in a water-tight fashion and fibrin glue was applied. Postoperatively, the patient made a significant but incomplete neurological recovery. His stocking-pattern numbness and sub-umbilical searing dysthesia improved. The spinal canal was clear of the foreign body and he had no persistent CSF leak. Postoperative magnetic resonance imaging of the spine revealed contusion of the spinal cord at the T9 level. Early removal of an intra-canicular bullet in the setting of an incomplete spinal cord injury can lead to significant neurological recovery following even high-velocity and/or high-caliber gunshot wounds. However, this case does not speak to, and prior experience does not demonstrate, significant neurological benefit in the setting of a complete injury.

  9. Prostate health index (phi) and prostate cancer antigen 3 (PCA3) significantly improve diagnostic accuracy in patients undergoing prostate biopsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perdonà, Sisto; Bruzzese, Dario; Ferro, Matteo; Autorino, Riccardo; Marino, Ada; Mazzarella, Claudia; Perruolo, Giuseppe; Longo, Michele; Spinelli, Rosa; Di Lorenzo, Giuseppe; Oliva, Andrea; De Sio, Marco; Damiano, Rocco; Altieri, Vincenzo; Terracciano, Daniela

    2013-02-15

    Prostate health index (phi) and prostate cancer antigen 3 (PCA3) have been recently proposed as novel biomarkers for prostate cancer (PCa). We assessed the diagnostic performance of these biomarkers, alone or in combination, in men undergoing first prostate biopsy for suspicion of PCa. One hundred sixty male subjects were enrolled in this prospective observational study. PSA molecular forms, phi index (Beckman coulter immunoassay), PCA3 score (Progensa PCA3 assay), and other established biomarkers (tPSA, fPSA, and %fPSA) were assessed before patients underwent a 18-core first prostate biopsy. The discriminating ability between PCa-negative and PCa-positive biopsies of Beckman coulter phi and PCA3 score and other used biomarkers were determined. One hundred sixty patients met inclusion criteria. %p2PSA (p2PSA/fPSA × 100), phi and PCA3 were significantly higher in patients with PCa compared to PCa-negative group (median values: 1.92 vs. 1.55, 49.97 vs. 36.84, and 50 vs. 32, respectively, P ≤ 0.001). ROC curve analysis showed that %p2PSA, phi, and PCA3 are good indicator of malignancy (AUCs = 0.68, 0.71, and 0.66, respectively). A multivariable logistic regression model consisting of both the phi index and PCA3 score allowed to reach an overall diagnostic accuracy of 0.77. Decision curve analysis revealed that this "combined" marker achieved the highest net benefit over the examined range of the threshold probability. phi and PCA3 showed no significant difference in the ability to predict PCa diagnosis in men undergoing first prostate biopsy. However, diagnostic performance is significantly improved by combining phi and PCA3. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. Improving seasonal forecasts of hydroclimatic variables through the state of multiple large-scale climate signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castelletti, A.; Giuliani, M.; Block, P. J.

    2017-12-01

    Increasingly uncertain hydrologic regimes combined with more frequent and intense extreme events are challenging water systems management worldwide, emphasizing the need of accurate medium- to long-term predictions to timely prompt anticipatory operations. Despite modern forecasts are skillful over short lead time (from hours to days), predictability generally tends to decrease on longer lead times. Global climate teleconnection, such as El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO), may contribute in extending forecast lead times. However, ENSO teleconnection is well defined in some locations, such as Western USA and Australia, while there is no consensus on how it can be detected and used in other regions, particularly in Europe, Africa, and Asia. In this work, we generalize the Niño Index Phase Analysis (NIPA) framework by contributing the Multi Variate Niño Index Phase Analysis (MV-NIPA), which allows capturing the state of multiple large-scale climate signals (i.e. ENSO, North Atlantic Oscillation, Pacific Decadal Oscillation, Atlantic Multi-decadal Oscillation, Indian Ocean Dipole) to forecast hydroclimatic variables on a seasonal time scale. Specifically, our approach distinguishes the different phases of the considered climate signals and, for each phase, identifies relevant anomalies in Sea Surface Temperature (SST) that influence the local hydrologic conditions. The potential of the MV-NIPA framework is demonstrated through an application to the Lake Como system, a regulated lake in northern Italy which is mainly operated for flood control and irrigation supply. Numerical results show high correlations between seasonal SST values and one season-ahead precipitation in the Lake Como basin. The skill of the resulting MV-NIPA forecast outperforms the one of ECMWF products. This information represents a valuable contribution to partially anticipate the summer water availability, especially during drought events, ultimately supporting the improvement of the Lake Como

  11. Determination of the substrate repertoire of ADAMTS2, 3, and 14 significantly broadens their functions and identifies extracellular matrix organization and TGF-β signaling as primary targets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bekhouche, Mourad; Leduc, Cedric; Dupont, Laura; Janssen, Lauriane; Delolme, Frederic; Vadon-Le Goff, Sandrine; Smargiasso, Nicolas; Baiwir, Dominique; Mazzucchelli, Gabriel; Zanella-Cleon, Isabelle; Dubail, Johanne; De Pauw, Edwin; Nusgens, Betty; Hulmes, David J S; Moali, Catherine; Colige, Alain

    2016-05-01

    A disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin type I motif (ADAMTS)2, 3, and 14 are collectively named procollagen N-proteinases (pNPs) because of their specific ability to cleave the aminopropeptide of fibrillar procollagens. Several reports also indicate that they could be involved in other biological processes, such as blood coagulation, development, and male fertility, but the potential substrates associated with these activities remain unknown. Using the recently described N-terminal amine isotopic labeling of substrate approach, we analyzed the secretomes of human fibroblasts and identified 8, 17, and 22 candidate substrates for ADAMTS2, 3, and 14, respectively. Among these newly identified substrates, many are components of the extracellular matrix and/or proteins related to cell signaling such as latent TGF-β binding protein 1, TGF-β RIII, and dickkopf-related protein 3. Candidate substrates for the 3 ADAMTS have been biochemically validated in different contexts, and the implication of ADAMTS2 in the control of TGF-β activity has been further demonstrated in human fibroblasts. Finally, the cleavage site specificity was assessed showing a clear and unique preference for nonpolar or slightly hydrophobic amino acids. This work shows that the activities of the pNPs extend far beyond the classically reported processing of the aminopropeptide of fibrillar collagens and that they should now be considered as multilevel regulators of matrix deposition and remodeling.-Bekhouche, M., Leduc, C., Dupont, L., Janssen, L., Delolme, F., Vadon-Le Goff, S., Smargiasso, N., Baiwir, D., Mazzucchelli, G., Zanella-Cleon, I., Dubail, J., De Pauw, E., Nusgens, B., Hulmes, D. J. S., Moali, C., Colige, A. Determination of the substrate repertoire of ADAMTS2, 3, and 14 significantly broadens their functions and identifies extracellular matrix organization and TGF-β signaling as primary targets. © FASEB.

  12. Lipid Replacement Therapy Drink Containing a Glycophospholipid Formulation Rapidly and Significantly Reduces Fatigue While Improving Energy and Mental Clarity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Settineri

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: Fatigue is the most common complaint of patients seeking general medical care and is often treated with stimulants. It is also important in various physical activities of relatively healthy men and women, such as sports performance. Recent clinical trials using patients with chronic fatigue have shown the benefit of Lipid Replacement Therapy in restoring mitochondrial electron transport function and reducing moderate to severe chronic fatigue. Methods: Lipid Replacement Therapy was administered for the first time as an all-natural functional food drink (60 ml containing polyunsaturated glycophospholipids but devoid of stimulants or herbs to reduce fatigue. This preliminary study used the Piper Fatigue Survey instrument as well as a supplemental questionnaire to assess the effects of the glycophospholipid drink on fatigue and the acceptability of the test drink in adult men and women. A volunteer group of 29 subjects of mean age 56.2±4.5 years with various fatigue levels were randomly recruited in a clinical health fair setting to participate in an afternoon open label trial on the effects of the test drink. Results: Using the Piper Fatigue instrument overall fatigue among participants was reduced within the 3-hour seminar by a mean of 39.6% (p<0.0001. All of the subcategories of fatigue showed significant reductions. Some subjects responded within 15 minutes, and the majority responded within one hour with increased energy and activity and perceived improvements in cognitive function, mental clarity and focus. The test drink was determined to be quite acceptable in terms of taste and appearance. There were no adverse events from the energy drink during the study.Functional Foods in Health and Disease 2011; 8:245-254Conclusions: The Lipid Replacement Therapy functional food drink appeared to be a safe, acceptable and potentially useful new method to reduce fatigue, sustain energy and improve perceptions of mental function.

  13. A matter of timing: identifying significant multi-dose radiotherapy improvements by numerical simulation and genetic algorithm search.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon D Angus

    -effecitive means of significantly improving clinical efficacy.

  14. A matter of timing: identifying significant multi-dose radiotherapy improvements by numerical simulation and genetic algorithm search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angus, Simon D; Piotrowska, Monika Joanna

    2014-01-01

    of significantly improving clinical efficacy.

  15. Evaluation of Advanced Signal Processing Techniques to Improve Detection and Identification of Embedded Defects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Clayton, Dwight A. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Santos-Villalobos, Hector J. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Baba, Justin S. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)

    2016-09-01

    , or an improvement in contrast over conventional SAFT reconstructed images. This report documents our efforts in four fronts: 1) Comparative study between traditional SAFT and FBD SAFT for concrete specimen with and without Alkali-Silica Reaction (ASR) damage, 2) improvement of our Model-Based Iterative Reconstruction (MBIR) for thick reinforced concrete [5], 3) development of a universal framework for sharing, reconstruction, and visualization of ultrasound NDE datasets, and 4) application of machine learning techniques for automated detection of ASR inside concrete. Our comparative study between FBD and traditional SAFT reconstruction images shows a clear difference between images of ASR and non-ASR specimens. In particular, the left first harmonic shows an increased contrast and sensitivity to ASR damage. For MBIR, we show the superiority of model-based techniques over delay and sum techniques such as SAFT. Improvements include elimination of artifacts caused by direct arrival signals, and increased contrast and Signal to Noise Ratio. For the universal framework, we document a format for data storage based on the HDF5 file format, and also propose a modular Graphic User Interface (GUI) for easy customization of data conversion, reconstruction, and visualization routines. Finally, two techniques for ASR automated detection are presented. The first technique is based on an analysis of the frequency content using Hilbert Transform Indicator (HTI) and the second technique employees Artificial Neural Network (ANN) techniques for training and classification of ultrasound data as ASR or non-ASR damaged classes. The ANN technique shows great potential with classification accuracy above 95%. These approaches are extensible to the detection of additional reinforced, thick concrete defects and damage.

  16. Noise Reduction of Steel Cord Conveyor Belt Defect Electromagnetic Signal by Combined Use of Improved Wavelet and EMD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hong-Wei Ma

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available In order to reduce the noise of a defect electromagnetic signal of the steel cord conveyor belt used in coal mines, a new signal noise reduction method by combined use of the improved threshold wavelet and Empirical Mode Decomposition (EMD is proposed. Firstly, the denoising method based on the improved threshold wavelet is applied to reduce the noise of a defect electromagnetic signal obtained by an electromagnetic testing system. Then, the EMD is used to decompose the denoised signal and then the effective Intrinsic Mode Function (IMF is extracted by the dominant eigenvalue strategy. Finally, the signal reconstruction is carried out by utilizing the obtained IMF. In order to verify the proposed noise reduction method, the experiments are carried out in two cases including the defective joint and steel wire rope break. The experimental results show that the proposed method in this paper obtains the higher Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR for the defect electromagnetic signal noise reduction of steel cord conveyor belts.

  17. Flavonol-rich dark cocoa significantly decreases plasma endothelin-1 and improves cognitive responses in urban children.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lilian eCalderon-Garciduenas

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Air pollution exposures are linked to systemic inflammation, cardiovascular and respiratory morbidity and mortality, neuroinflammation and neuropathology in young urbanites. In particular, most Mexico City Metropolitan Area (MCMA children exhibit subtle cognitive deficits, and neuropathology studies show 40% of them exhibiting frontal tau hyperphosphorylation and 51% amyloid-β diffuse plaques (compared to 0% in low pollution control children. We assessed whether a short cocoa intervention can be effective in decreasing plasma endothelin 1 (ET-1 and/or inflammatory mediators in MCMA children. Thirty g of dark cocoa with 680 mg of total flavonols were given daily for 10.11± 3.4 days (range 9 to 24 days to 18 children (10.55yrs, SD =1.45; 11F/7M. Key metabolite ratios in frontal white matter and in hippocampus pre and during cocoa intervention were quantified by magnetic resonance spectroscopy. ET-1 significantly decreased after cocoa treatment (p=0.0002. Fifteen children (83% showed a marginally significant individual improvement in one or both of the applied simple short memory tasks. Endothelial dysfunction is a key feature of exposure to particulate matter and decreased endothelin-1 bioavailability is likely useful for brain function in the context of air pollution. Our findings suggest that cocoa interventions may be critical for early implementation of neuroprotection of highly exposed urban children. Multi-domain nutraceutical interventions could limit the risk for endothelial dysfunction, cerebral hypoperfusion, neuroinflammation, cognitive deficits, structural volumetric detrimental brain effects, and the early development of the neuropathological hallmarks of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

  18. Flexible deep-ultraviolet light-emitting diodes for significant improvement of quantum efficiencies by external bending

    KAUST Repository

    Shervin, Shahab; Oh, Seung Kyu; Park, Hyun Jung; Lee, Keon Hwa; Asadirad, Mojtaba; Kim, Seung Hwan; Kim, Jeomoh; Pouladi, Sara; Lee, Sung-Nam; Li, Xiaohang; Kwak, Joon-Seop; Ryou, Jae-Hyun

    2018-01-01

    Deep ultraviolet (DUV) light at the wavelength range of 250‒280 nm (UVC spectrum) is essential for numerous applications such as sterilization, purification, sensing, and communication. III-nitride-based DUV light-emitting diodes (DUV LEDs), like other solid-state lighting sources, offer a great potential to replace the conventional gas-discharged lamps with short lifetimes and toxic-element-bearing nature. However, unlike visible LEDs, the DUV LEDs are still suffering from low quantum efficiencies (QEs) and low optical output powers. In this work, reported is a new route to improve QEs of AlGaN-based DUV LEDs using mechanical flexibility of recently developed bendable thin-film structures. Numerical studies show that electronic band structures of AlGaN heterostructures and resulting optical and electrical characteristics of the devices can be significantly modified by external bending through active control of piezoelectric polarization. Internal quantum efficiency (IQE) is enhanced higher than three times, when the DUV LEDs are moderately bent to induce in-plane compressive strain in the heterostructure. Furthermore, efficiency droop at high injection currents is mitigated and turn-on voltage of diodes decreases with the same bending condition. The concept of bendable DUV LEDs with a controlled external strain can provide a new path for high-output-power and high-efficiency devices.

  19. Flexible deep-ultraviolet light-emitting diodes for significant improvement of quantum efficiencies by external bending

    KAUST Repository

    Shervin, Shahab

    2018-01-26

    Deep ultraviolet (DUV) light at the wavelength range of 250‒280 nm (UVC spectrum) is essential for numerous applications such as sterilization, purification, sensing, and communication. III-nitride-based DUV light-emitting diodes (DUV LEDs), like other solid-state lighting sources, offer a great potential to replace the conventional gas-discharged lamps with short lifetimes and toxic-element-bearing nature. However, unlike visible LEDs, the DUV LEDs are still suffering from low quantum efficiencies (QEs) and low optical output powers. In this work, reported is a new route to improve QEs of AlGaN-based DUV LEDs using mechanical flexibility of recently developed bendable thin-film structures. Numerical studies show that electronic band structures of AlGaN heterostructures and resulting optical and electrical characteristics of the devices can be significantly modified by external bending through active control of piezoelectric polarization. Internal quantum efficiency (IQE) is enhanced higher than three times, when the DUV LEDs are moderately bent to induce in-plane compressive strain in the heterostructure. Furthermore, efficiency droop at high injection currents is mitigated and turn-on voltage of diodes decreases with the same bending condition. The concept of bendable DUV LEDs with a controlled external strain can provide a new path for high-output-power and high-efficiency devices.

  20. Novel ventilation design of combining spacer and mesh structure in sports T-shirt significantly improves thermal comfort.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Chao; Au, Joe Sau-chuen; Fan, Jintu; Zheng, Rong

    2015-05-01

    This paper reports on novel ventilation design in sports T-shirt, which combines spacer and mesh structure, and experimental evidence on the advantages of design in improving thermal comfort. Evaporative resistance (Re) and thermal insulation (Rc) of T-shirts were measured using a sweating thermal manikin under three different air velocities. Moisture permeability index (i(m)) was calculated to compare the different designed T-shirts. The T-shirts of new and conventional designs were also compared by wearer trials, which were comprised of 30 min treadmill running followed by 10 min rest. Skin temperature, skin relative humidity, heart rate, oxygen inhalation and energy expenditure were monitored, and subjective sensations were asked. Results demonstrated that novel T-shirt has 11.1% significant lower im than control sample under windy condition. The novel T-shirt contributes to reduce the variation of skin temperature and relative humidity up to 37% and 32%, as well as decrease 3.3% energy consumption during exercise. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd and The Ergonomics Society. All rights reserved.

  1. Significant improvement of thermal stability of glucose 1-dehydrogenase by introducing disulfide bonds at the tetramer interface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Haitao; Gao, Fen; Liu, Danfeng; Li, Zeli; Xu, Xiaohong; Wu, Min; Zhao, Yuhua

    2013-12-10

    Rational design was applied to glucose 1-dehydrogenase (LsGDH) from Lysinibacillus sphaericus G10 to improve its thermal stability by introduction of disulfide bridges between subunits. One out of the eleven mutants, designated as DS255, displayed significantly enhanced thermal stability with considerable soluble expression and high specific activity. It was extremely stable at pH ranging from 4.5 to 10.5, as it retained nearly 100% activity after incubating at different buffers for 1h. Mutant DS255 also exhibited high thermostability, having a half-life of 9900min at 50°C, which was 1868-fold as that of its wild type. Moreover, both of the increased free energy of denaturation and decreased entropy of denaturation of DS255 suggested that the enzyme structure was stabilized by the engineered disulfide bonds. On account of its robust stability, mutant DS255 would be a competitive candidate in practical applications of chiral chemicals synthesis, biofuel cells and glucose biosensors. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Imparting improvements in electrochemical sensors: evaluation of different carbon blacks that give rise to significant improvement in the performance of electroanalytical sensing platforms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vicentini, Fernando Campanhã; Ravanini, Amanda E.; Figueiredo-Filho, Luiz C.S.; Iniesta, Jesús; Banks, Craig E.; Fatibello-Filho, Orlando

    2015-01-01

    Three different carbon black materials have been evaluated as a potential modifier, however, only one demonstrated an improvement in the electrochemical properties. The carbon black structures were characterised with SEM, XPS and Raman spectroscopy and found to be very similar to that of amorphous graphitic materials. The modifications utilised were constructed by three different strategies (using ultrapure water, chitosan and dihexadecylphosphate). The fabricated sensors are electrochemically characterised using N,N,N',N'-tetramethyl-para-phenylenediamine and both inner-sphere and outer-sphere redox probes, namely potassium ferrocyanide(II) and hexaammineruthenium(III) chloride, in addition to the biologically relevant and electroactive analytes, dopamine (DA) and acetaminophen (AP). Comparisons are made with an edge-plane pyrolytic graphite and glassy-carbon electrode and the benefits of carbon black implemented as a modifier for sensors within electrochemistry are explored, as well as the characterisation of their electroanalytical performances. We reveal significant improvements in the electrochemical performance (excellent sensitivity, faster heterogeneous electron transfer rate (HET)) over that of a bare glassy-carbon and edge-plane pyrolytic graphite electrode and thus suggest that there are substantial advantages of using carbon black as modifier in the fabrication of electrochemical based sensors. Such work is highly important and informative for those working in the field of electroanalysis where electrochemistry can provide portable, rapid, reliable and accurate sensing protocols (bringing the laboratory into the field), with particular relevance to those searching for new electrode materials

  3. Time-frequency analysis of time-varying modulated signals based on improved energy separation by iterative generalized demodulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Zhipeng; Chu, Fulei; Zuo, Ming J.

    2011-03-01

    Energy separation algorithm is good at tracking instantaneous changes in frequency and amplitude of modulated signals, but it is subject to the constraints of mono-component and narrow band. In most cases, time-varying modulated vibration signals of machinery consist of multiple components, and have so complicated instantaneous frequency trajectories on time-frequency plane that they overlap in frequency domain. For such signals, conventional filters fail to obtain mono-components of narrow band, and their rectangular decomposition of time-frequency plane may split instantaneous frequency trajectories thus resulting in information loss. Regarding the advantage of generalized demodulation method in decomposing multi-component signals into mono-components, an iterative generalized demodulation method is used as a preprocessing tool to separate signals into mono-components, so as to satisfy the requirements by energy separation algorithm. By this improvement, energy separation algorithm can be generalized to a broad range of signals, as long as the instantaneous frequency trajectories of signal components do not intersect on time-frequency plane. Due to the good adaptability of energy separation algorithm to instantaneous changes in signals and the mono-component decomposition nature of generalized demodulation, the derived time-frequency energy distribution has fine resolution and is free from cross term interferences. The good performance of the proposed time-frequency analysis is illustrated by analyses of a simulated signal and the on-site recorded nonstationary vibration signal of a hydroturbine rotor during a shut-down transient process, showing that it has potential to analyze time-varying modulated signals of multi-components.

  4. Genetic deletion of the P2Y2 receptor offers significant resistance to development of lithium-induced polyuria accompanied by alterations in PGE2 signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yue; Pop, Ioana L; Carlson, Noel G; Kishore, Bellamkonda K

    2012-01-01

    Lithium (Li)-induced polyuria is due to resistance of the medullary collecting duct (mCD) to the action of arginine vasopressin (AVP), apparently mediated by increased production of PGE(2). We previously reported that the P2Y(2) receptor (P2Y(2)-R) antagonizes the action of AVP on the mCD and may play a role in Li-induced polyuria by enhancing the production of PGE(2) in mCD. Hence, we hypothesized that genetic deletion of P2Y(2)-R should ameliorate Li-induced polyuria. Wild-type (WT) or P2Y(2)-R knockout (KO) mice were fed normal or Li-added diets for 14 days and euthanized. Li-induced polyuria, and decreases in urine osmolality and AQP2 protein abundance in the renal medulla, were significantly less compared with WT mice despite the lack of differences in Li intake or terminal serum or inner medullary tissue Li levels. Li-induced increased urinary excretion of PGE(2) was not affected in KO mice. However, prostanoid EP(3) receptor (EP3-R) protein abundance in the renal medulla of KO mice was markedly lower vs. WT mice, irrespective of the dietary regimen. The protein abundances of other EP-Rs were not altered across the groups irrespective of the dietary regimen. Ex vivo stimulation of mCD with PGE(2) generated significantly more cAMP in Li-fed KO mice (130%) vs. Li-fed WT mice (100%). Taken together, these data suggest 1) genetic deletion of P2Y(2)-R offers significant resistance to the development of Li-induced polyuria; and 2) this resistance is apparently due to altered PGE(2) signaling mediated by a marked decrease in EP3-R protein abundance in the medulla, thus attenuating the EP3-mediated decrease in cAMP levels in mCD.

  5. [Improved detection of the pulse oximeter signal with a digital nerve block in patients in poor health status].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cordoví de Armas, L; Espinaco Valdés, J; Jiménez Paneque, R E; Costa Hidalgo, T; Vallongo Menéndez, M B

    2008-10-01

    To demonstrate the efficacy of a digital nerve block for improving pulse oximetry in conditions of low tissue perfusion. A randomized single-blind study of adult patients undergoing surgery under general anesthesia for conditions characterized by hypoperfusion. Patients were assigned to a control group or an experimental group. The experimental group received a digital nerve block in the middle finger of the left hand; a sensor was then placed on the finger for between 120 and 300 minutes. Age, sex, diagnosis, total observation time (TOT), percentage of time with no pulse oximeter signal (NoPO), and percentage of time with an unstable pulse oximeter signal (UnstPO) were recorded. Each patient was questioned between 16 and 24 hours after surgery and was examined for flushing, paresthesia, hypoesthesia, pain, and ecchymosis. The chi2 test was used to compare dichotomized or nominal variables and the t test was used to compare age, TOT, NoPO, and UnstPO. Values of P<.05 were considered statistically significant in both cases. Fifty patients were randomized to each group. A total of 82 patients remained in the study (control group=42, experimental group=40). There were no significant between-group differences in diagnoses or TOT. The mean values for NoPO and UnstPO were higher in the control group than in the experimental group (11.1% vs 4.4% and 35.9% vs 15.7%, respectively; P<.001). A digital nerve block can be used to prevent pulse oximetry failures in conditions of low peripheral perfusion.

  6. Weighted Least Squares Techniques for Improved Received Signal Strength Based Localization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José R. Casar

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available The practical deployment of wireless positioning systems requires minimizing the calibration procedures while improving the location estimation accuracy. Received Signal Strength localization techniques using propagation channel models are the simplest alternative, but they are usually designed under the assumption that the radio propagation model is to be perfectly characterized a priori. In practice, this assumption does not hold and the localization results are affected by the inaccuracies of the theoretical, roughly calibrated or just imperfect channel models used to compute location. In this paper, we propose the use of weighted multilateration techniques to gain robustness with respect to these inaccuracies, reducing the dependency of having an optimal channel model. In particular, we propose two weighted least squares techniques based on the standard hyperbolic and circular positioning algorithms that specifically consider the accuracies of the different measurements to obtain a better estimation of the position. These techniques are compared to the standard hyperbolic and circular positioning techniques through both numerical simulations and an exhaustive set of real experiments on different types of wireless networks (a wireless sensor network, a WiFi network and a Bluetooth network. The algorithms not only produce better localization results with a very limited overhead in terms of computational cost but also achieve a greater robustness to inaccuracies in channel modeling.

  7. Improved signal discrimination in tectonomagnetism: Discovery of a volcanomagnetic effect at Kilauea, Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, P.M.; Stacey, F.D.; Zablocki, C.J.; Olson, J.V.

    1979-01-01

    Cancellation of extraterrestrial magnetic disturbances by taking simple differences between total field readings at spaced stations is imperfect. It is shown that improvement is possible when three component observatory data are available from a single station in the general, but not necessarily immediate, vicinity of an array of total field stations used in a tectonomagnetic study. The local effects of a magnetic disturbance field depend upon its orientation, so that local field differences are more effectively generated by certain orientations of the disturbance field. The orientation of the disturbance field which correlates best with a local difference field is determined by a least-squares method, so that the correlated vector signal can be routinely subtracted from the difference field record. Application of the technique to daily averages of records from three synchronised proton magnetometers on Kilauea volcano reveals a 1.5-nT change in the local field at the time of a flank eruption in May, 1973. This effect was obscured by noise in the raw difference field data. ?? 1979.

  8. Significance of high-intensity signals on cranial MRI T2 weighted image in diagnosis of age-associated dementia. From a viewpoint of reversibility of brain function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kishiro, Masaki

    1994-01-01

    This study was undertaken to determine whether changes of EEG band profile in patients showing high-intensity signal (HIS) on cranial magnetic resonance images (MRI), who had however no vascular lesions on cranial CT, were similar to those in multi-infarct dementia (MID) or senile dementia of Alzheimer type (SDAT) patients and to determine the significance of HIS in the diagnosis of SDAT. Forty-two patients with dementia diagnosed according to DSM-III-R were divided into HIS (n=21), MID (n=13), and SDAT (n=8) based on CT and MRI findings. Multi-infarcted lesions were seen on cranial CT and HIS was seen on cranial MRI in MID patients. There were no abnormal lesions except brain atrophy on cranial CT and MRI in SDAT patients. Appearance rates (%) of the 2-18 c/s frequency bands using computerized quantitative EEG before and after administration of protirelin tartrate (TRH-T) were analyzed in the frontal, central, parietal and occipital areas of the brain. There were no significant differences in appearance rates of EEG frequency bands before administration of TRH-T in HIS, MID, and SDAT patients. A significant decrease in appearance rates of slow waves and a significant increase in appearance rates of α waves were observed after administration of TRH-T in the four areas in MID patients compared with those before administration. No significant differences in appearance rates of EEG frequency bands were observed after administration of TRH-T in the four areas in HIS and SDAT patients compared with those before administration. Changes of the EEG band profile in HIS patients were similar to those in SDAT patients. In the presence of appearance of HSI on cranial MRI T 2 weighted images, the possibility of SDAT patients cannot be excluded. Therefore, SDAT should be diagnosed based on both clinical data and the absence of brain vascular lesions on cranial CT. Also, HIS on MRI T 2 -weighted images is considered to reflect non-vascular lesions. (J.N.P.)

  9. Improved Empirical Mode Decomposition Algorithm of Processing Complex Signal for IoT Application

    OpenAIRE

    Yang, Xianzhao; Cheng, Gengguo; Liu, Huikang

    2015-01-01

    Hilbert-Huang transform is widely used in signal analysis. However, due to its inadequacy in estimating both the maximum and the minimum values of the signals at both ends of the border, traditional HHT is easy to produce boundary error in empirical mode decomposition (EMD) process. To overcome this deficiency, this paper proposes an enhanced empirical mode decomposition algorithm for processing complex signal. Our work mainly focuses on two aspects. On one hand, we develop a technique to obt...

  10. Performance Improvement of Power Analysis Attacks on AES with Encryption-Related Signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, You-Seok; Lee, Young-Jun; Han, Dong-Guk; Kim, Ho-Won; Kim, Hyoung-Nam

    A power analysis attack is a well-known side-channel attack but the efficiency of the attack is frequently degraded by the existence of power components, irrelative to the encryption included in signals used for the attack. To enhance the performance of the power analysis attack, we propose a preprocessing method based on extracting encryption-related parts from the measured power signals. Experimental results show that the attacks with the preprocessed signals detect correct keys with much fewer signals, compared to the conventional power analysis attacks.

  11. Improving signal-to-noise in the direct imaging of exoplanets and circumstellar disks with MLOCI

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wahhaj, Zahed; Cieza, Lucas A.; Mawet, Dimitri; Yang, Bin; Canovas, Hector; de Boer, Jozua; Casassus, Simon; Ménard, François; Schreiber, Matthias R.; Liu, Michael C.; Biller, Beth A.; Nielsen, Eric L.; Hayward, Thomas L.

    2015-09-01

    We present a new algorithm designed to improve the signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) of point and extended source detections around bright stars in direct imaging data.One of our innovations is that we insert simulated point sources into the science images, which we then try to recover with maximum S/N. This improves the S/N of real point sources elsewhere in the field. The algorithm, based on the locally optimized combination of images (LOCI) method, is called Matched LOCI or MLOCI. We show with Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) data on HD 135344 B and Near-Infrared Coronagraphic Imager (NICI) data on several stars that the new algorithm can improve the S/N of point source detections by 30-400% over past methods. We also find no increase in false detections rates. No prior knowledge of candidate companion locations is required to use MLOCI. On the other hand, while non-blind applications may yield linear combinations of science images that seem to increase the S/N of true sources by a factor >2, they can also yield false detections at high rates. This is a potential pitfall when trying to confirm marginal detections or to redetect point sources found in previous epochs. These findings are relevant to any method where the coefficients of the linear combination are considered tunable, e.g., LOCI and principal component analysis (PCA). Thus we recommend that false detection rates be analyzed when using these techniques. Based on observations obtained at the Gemini Observatory, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under a cooperative agreement with the NSF on behalf of the Gemini partnership: the National Science Foundation (USA), the Science and Technology Facilities Council (UK), the National Research Council (Canada), CONICYT (Chile), the Australian Research Council (Australia), Ministério da Ciência e Tecnologia (Brazil) and Ministerio de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación Productiva (Argentina).

  12. Improving the peak power density estimation for the DNBR trip signal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moreira, Joao M. L.; Souza, Rose Mary G.P.

    2002-01-01

    The departure from nucleate boiling (DNB) core protection in PWR reactors is usually carried out through the over temperature trip or the instantaneous minimum DNB ratio (DNBR) trip. The protection is obtained through specialized correlations or fast digital computer simulators that infer the core power level, and local coolant thermal and flow conditions out of process variables furnished by the instrumentation. The power density distribution information is usually expressed in terms of F q , the power peak factor, and its location. F q , in its turn, can be determined through the control rod position or, more often, through the power axial offset (AO) F q =f (AO, control rod positions). The AO, defined as the difference between upper and lower long ion chambers signals, is supplied for each channel by separate sets of out-of-core detectors positioned 90 or 120 degrees apart in plan. The AO is given by AO=(S t -S b )/(S t +S b ) where S t and S b are the out-of-core signals from the top and the bottom sections, respectively. In current PWRs a large penalty is imposed to the result of the first equation, because of the difficult of inferring with good accuracy the peak factor from the AO obtained from the out-of-core instrumentation. This ends up reducing the plant capacity factor. In this work, the f function in the first equation, which correlates the power peak factor with the axial offset yielded by out-of-core detectors and control rod positions, is obtained through a combination of specific experiments in the IPEN/MB-01 zero-power reactor and calculation results. For improving the peak factor estimation, it is necessary to consider accurately the response of the out-of-core detectors to different power density distribution in the core. This task is not easily accomplished through calculation due to the difficulties involved in the necessary neutron transport treatment for the out-of-core detector responses

  13. Cryptosporidium and other intestinal parasitic infections among HIV patients in southern Ethiopia: significance of improved HIV-related care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimelis, Techalew; Tassachew, Yayehyirad; Lambiyo, Tariku

    2016-05-10

    Intestinal parasitic infections are known to cause gastroenteritis, leading to higher morbidity and mortality, particularly in people living with HIV/AIDS. This study aimed to determine the prevalence of Cryptosporidium and other intestinal parasitic infections among HIV patients receiving care at a hospital in Ethiopia where previous available baseline data helps assess if improved HIV-related care has reduced infection rates. A cross-sectional study was conducted at Hawassa University Hospital in southern Ethiopia from May, 2013 to March, 2014. A consecutive sample of 491 HIV- infected patients with diarrhea or a CD4 T cell count intestinal parasites. The study was approved by the Institutional Review Board of the College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Hawassa University. Physicians managed participants found to be infected with any pathogenic intestinal parasite. The overall prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections among the study population was 35.8 %. The most prevalent parasites were Cryptosporidium (13.2 %), followed by Entamoeba histolytica/dispar (10.2 %), and Giardia lamblia (7.9 %). The rate of single and multiple infections were 25.5 and 10.3 %, respectively. Patients with a CD4 T cell count intestinal parasitic infection or cryptosporidiosis compared to those with counts ≥ 200 cells/μl, but with some type of diarrhea. The study shows high prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections in the study population. However, the results in the current report are significantly lower compared to previous findings in the same hospital. The observed lower infection rate is encouraging and supports the need to strengthen and sustain the existing intervention measures in order to further reduce intestinal parasitic infections in people living with HIV/AIDS.

  14. Extended-release niacin/laropiprant significantly improves lipid levels in type 2 diabetes mellitus irrespective of baseline glycemic control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bays HE

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Harold E Bays,1 Eliot A Brinton,2 Joseph Triscari,3 Erluo Chen,3 Darbie Maccubbin,3 Alexandra A MacLean,3 Kendra L Gibson,3 Rae Ann Ruck,3 Amy O Johnson-Levonas,3 Edward A O’Neill,3 Yale B Mitchel3 1Louisville Metabolic & Atherosclerosis Research Center (L-MARC, Louisville, KY, USA; 2Utah Foundation for Biomedical Research, Salt Lake City, UT, USA; 3Merck & Co, Inc., Whitehouse Station, NJ, USA Background: The degree of glycemic control in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM may alter lipid levels and may alter the efficacy of lipid-modifying agents. Objective: Evaluate the lipid-modifying efficacy of extended-release niacin/laropiprant (ERN/LRPT in subgroups of patients with T2DM with better or poorer glycemic control. Methods: Post hoc analysis of clinical trial data from patients with T2DM who were randomized 4:3 to double-blind ERN/LRPT or placebo (n=796, examining the lipid-modifying effects of ERN/LRPT in patients with glycosylated hemoglobin or fasting plasma glucose levels above and below median baseline levels. Results: At Week 12 of treatment, ERN/LRPT significantly improved low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C, non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, and lipoprotein (a, compared with placebo, with equal efficacy in patients above or below median baseline glycemic control. Compared with placebo, over 36 weeks of treatment more patients treated with ERN/LRPT had worsening of their diabetes and required intensification of antihyperglycemic medication, irrespective of baseline glycemic control. Incidences of other adverse experiences were generally low in all treatment groups. Conclusion: The lipid-modifying effects of ERN/LRPT are independent of the degree of baseline glycemic control in patients with T2DM (NCT00485758. Keywords: lipid-modifying agents, hyperglycemia, LDL, HDL, triglycerides

  15. 0.75 atoms improve the clock signal of 10,000 atoms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kruse, I.; Lange, K.; Peise, Jan

    2017-01-01

    Since the pioneering work of Ramsey, atom interferometers are employed for precision metrology, in particular to measure time and to realize the second. In a classical interferometer, an ensemble of atoms is prepared in one of the two input states, whereas the second one is left empty. In this case.......75 atoms to improve the clock sensitivity of 10,000 atoms by 2.05 dB. The SQL poses a significant limitation for today's microwave fountain clocks, which serve as the main time reference. We evaluate the major technical limitations and challenges for devising a next generation of fountain clocks based...... on atomic squeezed vacuum....

  16. An Improved Second-Order Generalized Integrator Based Quadrature Signal Generator

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xin, Zhen; Wang, Xiongfei; Qin, Zian

    2016-01-01

    The second-order generalized integrator based quadrature signal generator (SOGI-QSG) is able to produce in-quadrature signals for many applications, such as frequency estimation, grid synchronization, and harmonic extraction. However, the SOGI-QSG is sensitive to input dc and harmonic components...

  17. A Survey on Optimal Signal Processing Techniques Applied to Improve the Performance of Mechanical Sensors in Automotive Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernandez, Wilmar

    2007-01-01

    In this paper a survey on recent applications of optimal signal processing techniques to improve the performance of mechanical sensors is made. Here, a comparison between classical filters and optimal filters for automotive sensors is made, and the current state of the art of the application of robust and optimal control and signal processing techniques to the design of the intelligent (or smart) sensors that today's cars need is presented through several experimental results that show that the fusion of intelligent sensors and optimal signal processing techniques is the clear way to go. However, the switch between the traditional methods of designing automotive sensors and the new ones cannot be done overnight because there are some open research issues that have to be solved. This paper draws attention to one of the open research issues and tries to arouse researcher's interest in the fusion of intelligent sensors and optimal signal processing techniques.

  18. Interventions that effectively target Anopheles funestus mosquitoes could significantly improve control of persistent malaria transmission in south-eastern Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaindoa, Emmanuel W; Matowo, Nancy S; Ngowo, Halfan S; Mkandawile, Gustav; Mmbando, Arnold; Finda, Marcelina; Okumu, Fredros O

    2017-01-01

    An. arabiensis (44.1%). Though An. arabiensis is still the most abundant vector species here, the remaining malaria transmission is predominantly mediated by An. funestus, possibly due to high insecticide resistance and high survival probabilities. Interventions that effectively target An. funestus mosquitoes could therefore significantly improve control of persistent malaria transmission in south-eastern Tanzania.

  19. Interventions that effectively target Anopheles funestus mosquitoes could significantly improve control of persistent malaria transmission in south–eastern Tanzania

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matowo, Nancy S.; Ngowo, Halfan S.; Mkandawile, Gustav; Mmbando, Arnold; Finda, Marcelina; Okumu, Fredros O.

    2017-01-01

    An. arabiensis (44.1%). Though An. arabiensis is still the most abundant vector species here, the remaining malaria transmission is predominantly mediated by An. funestus, possibly due to high insecticide resistance and high survival probabilities. Interventions that effectively target An. funestus mosquitoes could therefore significantly improve control of persistent malaria transmission in south–eastern Tanzania. PMID:28542335

  20. Obesity improves myocardial ischaemic tolerance and RISK signalling in insulin-insensitive rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Donner

    2013-03-01

    Obesity with associated metabolic disturbances worsens ischaemic heart disease outcomes, and rodent studies confirm that obesity with insulin-resistance impairs myocardial resistance to ischemia-reperfusion (I-R injury. However, the effects of obesity per se are unclear, with some evidence for paradoxic cardioprotection (particularly in older subjects. We tested the impact of dietary obesity on I-R tolerance and reperfusion injury salvage kinase (RISK signalling in hearts from middle-aged (10 months old insulin-insensitive rats. Hearts from Wistar rats on either a 32-week control (CD or high carbohydrate obesogenic (OB diet were assessed for I-R resistance in vivo (45 minutes left anterior descending artery occlusion and 120 minutes reperfusion and ex vivo (25 minutes ischemia and 60 minutes reperfusion. Expression and δ-opioid receptor (δ-OR phospho-regulation of pro-survival (Akt/PKB, Erk1/2, eNOS and pro-injury (GSK3β enzymes were also examined. OB rats were heavier (764±25 versus 657±22 g for CD; P<0.05, hyperleptinaemic (11.1±0.7 versus 5.0±0.7 for CD; P<0.01 and comparably insulin-insensitive (HOMA-IR of 63.2±3.3 versus 63.2±1.6 for CD. In vivo infarction was more than halved in OB (20±3% versus CD rats (45±6% P<0.05, as was post-ischaemic lactate dehydrogenase efflux (0.4±0.3 mU/ml versus 5.6±0.5 mU/ml; P<0.02 and ex vivo contractile dysfunction (62±2% versus 44±6% recovery of ventricular force; P<0.05. OB hearts exhibited up to 60% higher Akt expression, with increased phosphorylation of eNOS (+100%, GSK3β (+45% and Erk1/2 (+15%. Pre-ischaemic δ-OR agonism with BW373U86 improved recoveries in CD hearts in association with phosphorylation of Akt (+40%, eNOS (+75% and GSK3β (+30%, yet failed to further enhance RISK-NOS activation or I-R outcomes in OB hearts. In summary, dietary obesity in the context of age-related insulin-insensitivity paradoxically improves myocardial I-R tolerance, in association with moderate hyperleptinaemic and

  1. Improving N-terminal protein annotation of Plasmodium species based on signal peptide prediction of orthologous proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neto Armando

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Signal peptide is one of the most important motifs involved in protein trafficking and it ultimately influences protein function. Considering the expected functional conservation among orthologs it was hypothesized that divergence in signal peptides within orthologous groups is mainly due to N-terminal protein sequence misannotation. Thus, discrepancies in signal peptide prediction of orthologous proteins were used to identify misannotated proteins in five Plasmodium species. Methods Signal peptide (SignalP and orthology (OrthoMCL were combined in an innovative strategy to identify orthologous groups showing discrepancies in signal peptide prediction among their protein members (Mixed groups. In a comparative analysis, multiple alignments for each of these groups and gene models were visually inspected in search of misannotated proteins and, whenever possible, alternative gene models were proposed. Thresholds for signal peptide prediction parameters were also modified to reduce their impact as a possible source of discrepancy among orthologs. Validation of new gene models was based on RT-PCR (few examples or on experimental evidence already published (ApiLoc. Results The rate of misannotated proteins was significantly higher in Mixed groups than in Positive or Negative groups, corroborating the proposed hypothesis. A total of 478 proteins were reannotated and change of signal peptide prediction from negative to positive was the most common. Reannotations triggered the conversion of almost 50% of all Mixed groups, which were further reduced by optimization of signal peptide prediction parameters. Conclusions The methodological novelty proposed here combining orthology and signal peptide prediction proved to be an effective strategy for the identification of proteins showing wrongly N-terminal annotated sequences, and it might have an important impact in the available data for genome-wide searching of potential vaccine and drug

  2. Signal void dots on T2-weighted brain MR images in patients with hypertensive intracerebral hemorrhage : Its nature and clinical significance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Sang Joon; Yoo, Dong Soo; Kim, Seung Chul; Kim, Tae Hoon; Kim, Jae Seung; Kim, Jae Il

    1997-01-01

    To describe the signal void dots found on T2-weighted magnetic resonance (MR) images of the brain in hypertensive patients. Conventional T2-weighted MR images of 11 patients with hypertensive intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH), 14 with lacunar infarction and 11 comprising a normal control group aged over 60 were analyzed with regard to the presence, location, number and size of signal void dots. We also evaluated their relationship to hypertension. We performed time-of-flight or phase contrast MR angiography, gradient echo pulse sequences, or conventional cerebral angiography in some hypertensive ICH patients and compared them with corresponding T2-weighted images. Signal void dots were found in all patients with hypertensive ICH. Six of 14 patients with lacunar infarction showed these dots;all six suffered from hypertension. The dots were located in the thalami, pons and basal ganglia, and were measured as 1 to 4mm in diameter, mostly 2mm;they looked larger on gradient echo images. In the normal control group there were no signal void dots, and on MR or conventional angiography, no vascular ectasia was noted at the site corresponding to the signal void dots. Signal void dots were not considered to be part of the normal aging process, but appeared to be closely related to hypertension and ICH. The dots were thought to be due to the susceptibility effect of blood degradation product rather than to flow artifact or enlarged vessels. The thrombosed microaneurysm with or without surrounding microleakage of blood may explain the nature of signal void dots on T2-weighted images of hypertensive brain

  3. A Simple Sonication Improves Protein Signal in Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization Imaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Li-En; Su, Pin-Rui; Wu, Hsin-Yi; Hsu, Cheng-Chih

    2018-02-01

    Proper matrix application is crucial in obtaining high quality matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization (MALDI) mass spectrometry imaging (MSI). Solvent-free sublimation was essentially introduced as an approach of homogeneous coating that gives small crystal size of the organic matrix. However, sublimation has lower extraction efficiency of analytes. Here, we present that a simple sonication step after the hydration in standard sublimation protocol significantly enhances the sensitivity of MALDI MSI. This modified procedure uses a common laboratory ultrasonicator to immobilize the analytes from tissue sections without noticeable delocalization. Improved imaging quality with additional peaks above 10 kDa in the spectra was thus obtained upon sonication treatment. [Figure not available: see fulltext.

  4. Ginseng Berry Extract Supplementation Improves Age-Related Decline of Insulin Signaling in Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eunhui Seo

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of ginseng berry extract on insulin sensitivity and associated molecular mechanisms in aged mice. C57BL/6 mice (15 months old were maintained on a regular diet (CON or a regular diet supplemented with 0.05% ginseng berry extract (GBD for 24 or 32 weeks. GBD-fed mice showed significantly lower serum insulin levels (p = 0.016 and insulin resistance scores (HOMA-IR (p = 0.012, suggesting that GBD improved insulin sensitivity. Pancreatic islet hypertrophy was also ameliorated in GBD-fed mice (p = 0.007. Protein levels of tyrosine phosphorylated insulin receptor substrate (IRS-1 (p = 0.047, and protein kinase B (AKT (p = 0.037, were up-regulated in the muscle of insulin-injected GBD-fed mice compared with CON-fed mice. The expressions of forkhead box protein O1 (FOXO1 (p = 0.036 and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARγ (p = 0.032, which are known as aging- and insulin resistance-related genes, were also increased in the muscle of GBD-fed mice. We conclude that ginseng berry extract consumption might increase activation of IRS-1 and AKT, contributing to the improvement of insulin sensitivity in aged mice.

  5. FOG Random Drift Signal Denoising Based on the Improved AR Model and Modified Sage-Husa Adaptive Kalman Filter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Jin; Xu, Xiaosu; Liu, Yiting; Zhang, Tao; Li, Yao

    2016-07-12

    In order to reduce the influence of fiber optic gyroscope (FOG) random drift error on inertial navigation systems, an improved auto regressive (AR) model is put forward in this paper. First, based on real-time observations at each restart of the gyroscope, the model of FOG random drift can be established online. In the improved AR model, the FOG measured signal is employed instead of the zero mean signals. Then, the modified Sage-Husa adaptive Kalman filter (SHAKF) is introduced, which can directly carry out real-time filtering on the FOG signals. Finally, static and dynamic experiments are done to verify the effectiveness. The filtering results are analyzed with Allan variance. The analysis results show that the improved AR model has high fitting accuracy and strong adaptability, and the minimum fitting accuracy of single noise is 93.2%. Based on the improved AR(3) model, the denoising method of SHAKF is more effective than traditional methods, and its effect is better than 30%. The random drift error of FOG is reduced effectively, and the precision of the FOG is improved.

  6. Significant survival improvement of patients with recurrent breast cancer in the periods 2001-2008 vs. 1992-2000

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nishimura Sumiko

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background It is unclear whether individualized treatments based on biological factors have improved the prognosis of recurrent breast cancer. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the survival improvement of patients with recurrent breast cancer after the introduction of third generation aromatase inhibitors (AIs and trastuzumab. Methods A total of 407 patients who received first diagnosis of recurrent breast cancer and treatment at National Kyushu Cancer Center between 1992 and 2008 were retrospectively evaluated. As AIs and trastuzumab were approved for clinical use in Japan in 2001, the patients were divided into two time cohorts depending on whether the cancer recurred before or after 2001. Cohort A: 170 patients who were diagnosed between 1992 and 2000. Cohort B: 237 patients who were diagnosed between 2001 and 2008. Tumor characteristics, treatments, and outcome were compared. Results Fourteen percent of cohort A and 76% of cohort B received AIs and/or trastuzumab (P Conclusions The prognosis of patients with recurrent breast cancer was improved over time following the introduction of AIs and trastuzumab and the survival improvement was apparent in HR- and/or HER-2-positive tumors.

  7. Significant Improvement in Sleep in People with Intellectual Disabilities Living in Residential Settings by Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hylkema, T.; Vlaskamp, C.

    2009-01-01

    Background: Although about 15 to 50 percent of people with intellectual disabilities (ID) living in residential settings suffer from sleep problems, scant attention is paid to these problems. Most available studies focus on pharmaceutical solutions. In this study we focus on improving sleep in people with intellectual disabilities living in…

  8. Microchip electrospray: improvements in spray and signal stability during gradient elution by an inverted postcolumn makeup flow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Stephanie; Effelsberg, Uwe; Tallarek, Ulrich

    2011-12-01

    Dynamic changes in mobile phase composition during high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) gradient elution coupled to mass spectrometry (MS) sensitively affect electrospray modes. We investigate the impact of the eluent composition on spray stability and MS response by infusion and injection experiments with a small tetrapeptide in water-acetonitrile mixtures. The employed HPLC/electrospray (ESI)-MS configuration uses a microchip equipped with an enrichment column, a separation column, and a makeup flow (MUF) channel. One nano pump is connected to the separation column, while a second one delivers solvent of exactly inverted composition to the MUF channel. Both solvent streams are united behind the separation column, before the ESI tip, such that the resulting electrosprayed solution always has identical composition during a gradient elution. Analyte peak parameters without and with MUF compensation are determined and discussed with respect to the electrospray mode and eluent composition. The postcolumn MUF significantly improves spray and signal stability over the entire solvent gradient, without compromising the performance of the HPLC separation column. It can also be conveniently implemented on microchip platforms.

  9. Particle swarm optimization based feature enhancement and feature selection for improved emotion recognition in speech and glottal signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthusamy, Hariharan; Polat, Kemal; Yaacob, Sazali

    2015-01-01

    In the recent years, many research works have been published using speech related features for speech emotion recognition, however, recent studies show that there is a strong correlation between emotional states and glottal features. In this work, Mel-frequency cepstralcoefficients (MFCCs), linear predictive cepstral coefficients (LPCCs), perceptual linear predictive (PLP) features, gammatone filter outputs, timbral texture features, stationary wavelet transform based timbral texture features and relative wavelet packet energy and entropy features were extracted from the emotional speech (ES) signals and its glottal waveforms(GW). Particle swarm optimization based clustering (PSOC) and wrapper based particle swarm optimization (WPSO) were proposed to enhance the discerning ability of the features and to select the discriminating features respectively. Three different emotional speech databases were utilized to gauge the proposed method. Extreme learning machine (ELM) was employed to classify the different types of emotions. Different experiments were conducted and the results show that the proposed method significantly improves the speech emotion recognition performance compared to previous works published in the literature.

  10. Brief Communication: Upper Air Relaxation in RACMO2 Significantly Improves Modelled Interannual Surface Mass Balance Variability in Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    van de Berg, W. J.; Medley, B.

    2016-01-01

    The Regional Atmospheric Climate Model (RACMO2) has been a powerful tool for improving surface mass balance (SMB) estimates from GCMs or reanalyses. However, new yearly SMB observations for West Antarctica show that the modelled interannual variability in SMB is poorly simulated by RACMO2, in contrast to ERA-Interim, which resolves this variability well. In an attempt to remedy RACMO2 performance, we included additional upper-air relaxation (UAR) in RACMO2. With UAR, the correlation to observations is similar for RACMO2 and ERA-Interim. The spatial SMB patterns and ice-sheet-integrated SMB modelled using UAR remain very similar to the estimates of RACMO2 without UAR. We only observe an upstream smoothing of precipitation in regions with very steep topography like the Antarctic Peninsula. We conclude that UAR is a useful improvement for regional climate model simulations, although results in regions with steep topography should be treated with care.

  11. Improving the Molecular Ion Signal Intensity for In Situ Liquid SIMS Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Yufan; Yao, Juan; Ding, Yuanzhao; Yu, Jiachao; Hua, Xin; Evans, James E; Yu, Xiaofei; Lao, David B; Heldebrant, David J; Nune, Satish K; Cao, Bin; Bowden, Mark E; Yu, Xiao-Ying; Wang, Xue-Lin; Zhu, Zihua

    2016-12-01

    In situ liquid secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) enabled by system for analysis at the liquid vacuum interface (SALVI) has proven to be a promising new tool to provide molecular information at solid-liquid and liquid-vacuum interfaces. However, the initial data showed that useful signals in positive ion spectra are too weak to be meaningful in most cases. In addition, it is difficult to obtain strong negative molecular ion signals when m/z>200. These two drawbacks have been the biggest obstacle towards practical use of this new analytical approach. In this study, we report that strong and reliable positive and negative molecular signals are achievable after optimizing the SIMS experimental conditions. Four model systems, including a 1,8-diazabicycloundec-7-ene (DBU)-base switchable ionic liquid, a live Shewanella oneidensis biofilm, a hydrated mammalian epithelia cell, and an electrolyte popularly used in Li ion batteries were studied. A signal enhancement of about two orders of magnitude was obtained in comparison with non-optimized conditions. Therefore, molecular ion signal intensity has become very acceptable for use of in situ liquid SIMS to study solid-liquid and liquid-vacuum interfaces. Graphical Abstract ᅟ.

  12. Improving winter leaf area index estimation in evergreen coniferous forests and its significance in carbon and water fluxes modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, R.; Chen, J. M.; Luo, X.

    2016-12-01

    Modeling of carbon and water fluxes at the continental and global scales requires remotely sensed LAI as inputs. For evergreen coniferous forests (ENF), severely underestimated winter LAI has been one of the issues for mostly available remote sensing products, which could cause negative bias in the modeling of Gross Primary Productivity (GPP) and evapotranspiration (ET). Unlike deciduous trees which shed all the leaves in winter, conifers retains part of their needles and the proportion of the retained needles depends on the needle longevity. In this work, the Boreal Ecosystem Productivity Simulator (BEPS) was used to model GPP and ET at eight FLUXNET Canada ENF sites. Two sets of LAI were used as the model inputs: the 250m 10-day University of Toronto (U of T) LAI product Version 2 and the corrected LAI based on the U of T LAI product and the needle longevity of the corresponding tree species at individual sites. Validating model daily GPP (gC/m2) against site measurements, the mean RMSE over eight sites decreases from 1.85 to 1.15, and the bias changes from -0.99 to -0.19. For daily ET (mm), mean RMSE decreases from 0.63 to 0.33, and the bias changes from -0.31 to -0.16. Most of the improvements occur in the beginning and at the end of the growing season when there is large correction of LAI and meanwhile temperature is still suitable for photosynthesis and transpiration. For the dormant season, the improvement in ET simulation mostly comes from the increased interception of precipitation brought by the elevated LAI during that time. The results indicate that model performance can be improved by the application the corrected LAI. Improving the winter RS LAI can make a large impact on land surface carbon and energy budget.

  13. Improving detector signal processing with pulse height analysis in Moessbauer spectrometers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pechousek, Jiri; Mashlan, Miroslav; Frydrych, Jiri; Jancik, Dalibor; Prochazka, Roman

    2007-01-01

    A plenty of different programming techniques and instrument solutions are used in the development of Moessbauer spectrometers. Each of them should provide a faster spectrum accumulation process, increased productivity of measurements, decreased nonlinearity of the velocity scale, etc. The well known virtual instrumentation programming method has been used to design a computer-based Moessbauer spectrometer. Hardware solution was based on two commercially-available PCI modules produced by National Instruments Co. Virtual Moessbauer spectrometer is implemented by the graphical programming language LabVIEW 7 Express. This design environment allows to emulate the multichannel analyzer on the digital oscilloscope platform. This is a novel method based on Waveform Peak Detection function which allows detailed analysis of the acquired signal. The optimal treatment of the detector signal from various detector types is achieved by mathematical processing only. As a result, the possibility of an increase of signal/noise ratio is presented.

  14. Improved signal model for confocal sensors accounting for object depending artifacts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mauch, Florian; Lyda, Wolfram; Gronle, Marc; Osten, Wolfgang

    2012-08-27

    The conventional signal model of confocal sensors is well established and has proven to be exceptionally robust especially when measuring rough surfaces. Its physical derivation however is explicitly based on plane surfaces or point like objects, respectively. Here we show experimental results of a confocal point sensor measurement of a surface standard. The results illustrate the rise of severe artifacts when measuring curved surfaces. On this basis, we present a systematic extension of the conventional signal model that is proven to be capable of qualitatively explaining these artifacts.

  15. Enhancing Brassinosteroid Signaling via Overexpression of Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum SlBRI1 Improves Major Agronomic Traits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuming Nie

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Brassinosteroids (BRs play important roles in plant growth, development, and stress responses through the receptor, Brassinosteroid-insensitive 1 (BRI1, which perceives BRs and initiates BR signaling. There is considerable potential agricultural value in regulating BR signaling in crops. In this study, we investigated the effects of overexpressing the tomato (Solanum lycopersicum BRI1 gene, SlBRI1, on major agronomic traits, such as seed germination, vegetative growth, fruit ethylene production, carotenoid accumulation, yield, and quality attributes. SlBRI1 overexpression enhanced the endogenous BR signaling intensity thereby increasing the seed germination rate, lateral root number, hypocotyl length, CO2 assimilation, plant height, and flower size. The transgenic plants also showed an increase in fruit yield and fruit number per plant, although the mean weight of individual fruit was reduced, compared with wild type. SlBRI1 overexpression also promoted fruit ripening and ethylene production, and caused an increase in levels of carotenoids, ascorbic acid, soluble solids, and soluble sugars during fruit ripening. An increased BR signaling intensity mediated by SlBRI1 overexpression was therefore positively correlated with carotenoid accumulation and fruit nutritional quality. Our results indicate that enhancing BR signaling by overexpression of SlBRI1 in tomato has the potential to improve multiple major agronomic traits.

  16. Traffic signal phasing at intersections to improve safety for alcohol-affected pedestrians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenné, Michael G; Corben, Bruce F; Stephan, Karen

    2007-07-01

    Alcohol-affected pedestrians are among the highest-risk groups involved in pedestrian casualty crashes. This paper investigates the opportunities to use a modified form of traffic signal operation during high-risk periods and at high-risk locations to reduce alcohol-affected pedestrian crashes and the severity of injuries that might otherwise occur. The 'Dwell-on-Red' treatment involves displaying a red traffic signal to all vehicle directions during periods when no vehicular traffic is detected, so that drivers approach high-risk intersections at a lower speed than if a green signal were displayed. Vehicle speed data were collected before and after treatment activation at both a control and treatment site. Speed data were collected both 30 m prior to and at the intersection stop line. The treatment was associated with a reduction in mean vehicle speeds of 3.9 kph (9%) and 11.0 kph (28%) at 30 m and stop line collection points, respectively, and substantial reductions in the proportion of vehicles travelling at threatening speeds with regard to the severity of pedestrian injury. Other important road safety concerns may also benefit from this form of traffic signal modification, and it is recommended that other areas of application be explored, including the other severe trauma categories typically concentrated around signalised intersections.

  17. Ca2+ signalling in endothelial progenitor cells: a novel means to improve cell-based therapy and impair tumour vascularisation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moccia, Francesco; Lodola, Francesco; Dragoni, Silvia; Bonetti, Elisa; Bottino, Cinzia; Guerra, Germano; Laforenza, Umberto; Rosti, Vittorio; Tanzi, Franco

    2014-01-01

    Endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) have recently been employed in cell-based therapy (CBT) to promote regeneration of ischemic organs, such as heart and limbs. Furthermore, EPCs may sustain tumour vascularisation and provide an additional target for anticancer therapies. CBT is limited by the paucity of cells harvested from peripheral blood and suffers from several pitfalls, including the low rate of engrafted EPCs, whereas classic antiangiogenic treatments manifest a number of side effects and may induce resistance into the patients. CBT will benefit of a better understanding of the signal transduction pathway(s) which drive(s) EPC proliferation, trafficking, and incorporation into injured tissues. At the same time, this information might outline alternative molecular targets to impair tumor neovascularisation and improve the therapeutic outcome of antiangiogenic strategies. An increase in intracellular Ca(2+) concentration is the key signal in the regulation of cellular replication, migration, and differentiation. In particular, Ca(2+) signalling may regulate cellcycle progression, due to the Ca(2+)-sensitivity of a number of cycline-dependent kinases, and gene expression, owing to the Ca(2+)-dependence of several transcription factors. Recent work has outlined the role of the so-called store-operated Ca(2+) entry in driving EPC proliferation and migration. Unravelling the mechanisms guiding EPC engraftment into neovessels might supply the biological bases required to improve CBT and anticancer treatments. For example, genetic manipulation of the Ca(2+) signalling machinery could provide a novel approach to increase the extent of limb regeneration or preventing tumour vascularisation by EPCs.

  18. Process signal selection method to improve the impact mitigation of sensor broken for diagnosis using machine learning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Minowa, Hirotsugu; Gofuku, Akio

    2014-01-01

    Accidents of industrial plants cause large loss on human, economic, social credibility. In recent, studies of diagnostic methods using techniques of machine learning are expected to detect early and correctly abnormality occurred in a plant. However, the general diagnostic machines are generated generally to require all process signals (hereafter, signals) for plant diagnosis. Thus if trouble occurs such as process sensor is broken, the diagnostic machine cannot diagnose or may decrease diagnostic performance. Therefore, we propose an important process signal selection method to improve impact mitigation without reducing the diagnostic performance by reducing the adverse effect of noises on multi-agent diagnostic system. The advantage of our method is the general-purpose property that allows to be applied to various supervised machine learning and to set the various parameters to decide termination of search. The experiment evaluation revealed that diagnostic machines generated by our method using SVM improved the impact mitigation and did not reduce performance about the diagnostic accuracy, the velocity of diagnosis, predictions of plant state near accident occurrence, in comparison with the basic diagnostic machine which diagnoses by using all signals. This paper reports our proposed method and the results evaluated which our method was applied to the simulated abnormal of the fast-breeder reactor Monju. (author)

  19. Migration ability and Toll-like receptor expression of human mesenchymal stem cells improves significantly after three-dimensional culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Panpan; Liu, Zilin; Li, Xue; Zhang, Bing; Wang, Xiaoyuan; Lan, Jing; Shi, Qing; Li, Dong; Ju, Xiuli

    2017-09-16

    While the conventional two-dimensional (2D) culture protocol is well accepted for the culture of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), this method fails to recapitulate the in vivo native three-dimensional (3D) cellular microenvironment, and may result in phenotypic changes, and homing and migration capacity impairments. MSC preparation in 3D culture systems has been considered an attractive preparatory and delivery method recently. We seeded human umbilical cord-derived MSCs (hUCMSCs) in a 3D culture system with porcine acellular dermal matrix (PADM), and investigated the phenotypic changes, the expression changes of some important receptors, including Toll-like receptors (TLRs) and C-X-C chemokine receptor type 4 (CXCR4) when hUCMSCs were transferred from 2D to 3D systems, as well as the alterations in in vivo homing and migration potential. It was found that the percentage of CD105-positive cells decreased significantly, whereas that of CD34- and CD271-positive cells increased significantly in 3D culture, compared to that in 2D culture. The mRNA and protein expression levels of TLR2, TLR3, TLR4, TLR6, and CXCR4 in hUCMSCs were increased significantly upon culturing with PADM for 3 days, compared to the levels in 2D culture. The numbers of migratory 3D hUCMSCs in the heart, liver, spleen, and bone marrow were significantly greater than the numbers of 2D hUCMSCs, and the worst migration occurred in 3D + AMD3100 (CXCR4 antagonist) hUCMSCs. These results suggested that 3D culture of hUCMSCs with PADM could alter the phenotypic characteristics of hUCMSCs, increase their TLR and CXCR4 expression levels, and promote their migratory and homing capacity in which CXCR4 plays an important role. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. The patient's safety - For a dynamics of improvement. Nr 3. How to analyze your significant radiation protection events?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2012-07-01

    The objective of this publication is to present event analysis methods which are the most frequently used by radiotherapy departments. After an indication of key figures concerning radiotherapy patients, sessions and events, the document indicates the objectives and steps of an event analysis. It presents various analysis methods: Ishikawa diagram (or 5M method or causes-effects diagram), the cause tree, the ALARM method (association of litigation and risk management), the ORION method. It proposes a comparison between these five methods, their possibilities, their limits. Good practices are outlined in terms of data acquisition, method choice, event analysis, and improvement actions. The use of the cause tree analysis is commented by members of the Limoges hospital radiotherapy department, and that of the Ishikawa method by a member of the Beauvais hospital

  1. Different surgical strategies for chronic pancreatitis significantly improve long-term outcome: a comparative single center study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hildebrand P

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Objective In general, chronic pancreatitis (CP primarily requires conservative treatment. The chronic pain syndrome and complications make patients seek surgical advice, frequently after years of progression. In the past, surgical procedures involving drainage as well as resection have been employed successfully. The present study compared the different surgical strategies. Patients and Methods From March 2000 until April 2005, a total of 51 patients underwent surgical treatment for CP at the Department of surgery, University of Schleswig-Holstein, Campus Lübeck. Out of those 51 patients, 39 (76.5% were operated according to the Frey procedure, and in 12 cases (23.5% the Whipple procedure was performed. Patient data were documented prospectively throughout the duration of the hospital stay. The evaluation of the postoperative pain score was carried out retrospectively with a validated questionnaire. Results Average operating time was 240 minutes for the Frey group and 411 minutes for the Whipple group. The medium number of blood transfusions was 1 in the Frey group and 4.5 in the Whipple group. Overall morbidity was 21% in the Frey group and 42% in the Whipple group. 30-day mortality was zero for all patients. During the median follow-up period of 50 months, an improvement in pain score was observed in 93% of the patients of the Frey group and 67% of the patients treated according to the Whipple procedure. Conclusion The results show that both the Frey procedure as well as partial pancreaticoduodenectomy are capable of improving chronic pain symptoms in CP. As far as later endocrine and exocrine pancreatic insufficiency is concerned, however, the extended drainage operation according to Frey proves to be advantageous compared to the traditional resection procedure by Whipple. Accordingly, the Frey procedure provides us with an organ-preserving surgical procedure which treats the complications of CP sufficiently, thus being an

  2. Significant improvement of bone mineral density by denosumab treatment in Japanese osteoporotic patients following breast cancer treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nakamura Y

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Yukio Nakamura,1,2 Mikio Kamimura,3 Akio Morikawa,4 Akira Taguchi,5 Takako Suzuki,1 Hiroyuki Kato1 1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Shinshu University School of Medicine, Matsumoto, 2Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Showa-Inan General Hospital, Komagane, 3Center for Osteoporosis and Spinal Disorders, Kamimura Orthopaedic Clinic, Matsumoto, 4Department of Surgery, Showa-Inan General Hospital, Komagane, 5Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology, School of Dentistry, Matsumoto Dental University, Shiojiri, Japan Background: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of denosumab in patients with osteoporosis (OP and non-metastatic breast cancer following treatment of 1 surgery, 2 surgery and aromatase inhibitors, and 3 surgery, aromatase inhibitors, and anti-cancer agents, compared with those in primary OP patients. Patients and methods: In this retrospective 24-month study, patients were divided into the primary OP group (34 cases or OP receiving breast cancer treatment group (breast cancer group; 17 cases. We measured serum calcium, whole parathyroid hormone (PTH, 1,25OH2D3, bone alkaline phosphatase (BAP, tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase-5b (TRACP-5b, and bone mineral density (BMD of the lumbar 1–4 vertebrae (L-BMD and bilateral total hips (H-BMD for 24 months. Results: The percent changes of serum calcium in the breast cancer group were significantly lower than those in the primary OP group at 1 week, 1 and 12 months. The percent changes of whole PTH in the primary OP group were significantly lower than those in the breast cancer group at 2 and 4 months. Significant differences were found between the groups at 18 months (-34.5% in the primary OP group and -52.6% in the breast cancer group, respectively for the percent changes of BAP. Significant differences were found between the groups at 12, 18, and 24 months (-39.7% in the primary OP group and -64.0% in the breast cancer group at 24 months, respectively for the percent

  3. Stress-altered synaptic plasticity and DAMP signaling in the hippocampus-PFC axis; elucidating the significance of IGF-1/IGF-1R/CaMKIIα expression in neural changes associated with a prolonged exposure therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogundele, Olalekan M; Ebenezer, Philip J; Lee, Charles C; Francis, Joseph

    2017-06-14

    Traumatic stress patients showed significant improvement in behavior after a prolonged exposure to an unrelated stimulus. This treatment method attempts to promote extinction of the fear memory associated with the initial traumatic experience. However, the subsequent prolonged exposure to such stimulus creates an additional layer of neural stress. Although the mechanism remains unclear, prolonged exposure therapy (PET) likely involves changes in synaptic plasticity, neurotransmitter function and inflammation; especially in parts of the brain concerned with the formation and retrieval of fear memory (Hippocampus and Prefrontal Cortex: PFC). Since certain synaptic proteins are also involved in danger-associated molecular pattern signaling (DAMP), we identified the significance of IGF-1/IGF-1R/CaMKIIα expression as a potential link between the concurrent progression of synaptic and inflammatory changes in stress. Thus, a comparison between IGF-1/IGF-1R/CaMKIIα, synaptic and DAMP proteins in stress and PET may highlight the significance of PET on synaptic morphology and neuronal inflammatory response. In behaviorally characterized Sprague-Dawley rats, there was a significant decline in neural IGF-1 (pIGF-1R expression. These animals showed a significant loss of presynaptic markers (synaptophysin; pIGF-1 (pIGF-1R was recorded in the Stress-PET group (pIGF-1/IGF-1R, an increase in activated hippocampal and cortical microglia was seen in stress (pIGF1/IGF-1R/CaMKIIα. Firstly, we showed a direct relationship between IGF-1/IGF-1R expression, presynaptic function (synaptophysin) and neurotransmitter activity in stress and PET. Secondly, we identified the possible role of CaMKIIα in post-synaptic function and regulation of small ion conductance channels. Lastly, we highlighted some of the possible links between IGF1/IGF-1R/CaMKIIα, the expression of DAMP proteins, Microglia activation, and its implication on synaptic plasticity during stress and PET. Copyright © 2017

  4. Functional significance of the signal transduction pathways Akt and Erk in ovarian follicles: in vitro and in vivo studies in cattle and sheep

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan Kate E

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The intracellular signalling mechanisms that regulate ovarian follicle development are unclear; however, we have recently shown differences in the Akt and Erk signalling pathways in dominant compared to subordinate follicles. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of inhibiting Akt and Erk phosphorylation on IGF- and gonadotropin- stimulated granulosa and theca cell function in vitro, and on follicle development in vivo. Methods Bovine granulosa and theca cells were cultured for six days and stimulated with FSH and/or IGF, or LH in combination with PD98059 (Erk inhibitor and/or LY294002 (Akt inhibitor and their effect on cell number and hormone secretion (estradiol, activin-A, inhibin-A, follistatin, progesterone and androstenedione determined. In addition, ovarian follicles were treated in vivo with PD98059 and/or LY294002 in ewes on Day 3 of the cycle and follicles were recovered 48 hours later. Results We have shown that gonadotropin- and IGF-stimulated hormone production by granulosa and theca cells is reduced by treatment with PD98059 and LY294002 in vitro. Furthermore, treatment with PD98059 and LY294002 reduced follicle growth and oestradiol production in vivo. Conclusion These results demonstrate an important functional role for the Akt and Erk signalling pathways in follicle function, growth and development.

  5. Significant Improvement Selected Mediators of Inflammation in Phenotypes of Women with PCOS after Reduction and Low GI Diet

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Małgorzata Szczuko

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Many researchers suggest an increased risk of atherosclerosis in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. In the available literature, there are no studies on the mediators of inflammation in women with PCOS, especially after dietary intervention. Eicosanoids (HETE and HODE were compared between the biochemical phenotypes of women with PCOS (normal and high androgens and after the 3-month reduction diet. Eicosanoid profiles (9(S-HODE, 13(S-HODE, 5(S-HETE, 12(S-HETE, 15(S-HETE, 5(S-oxoETE, 16(R-HETE, 16(S-HETE and 5(S, 6(R-lipoxin A4, 5(S, 6(R, 15(R-lipoxin A4 were extracted from 0.5 ml of plasma using solid-phase extraction RP-18 SPE columns. The HPLC separations were performed on a 1260 liquid chromatograph. No significant differences were found in the concentration of analysed eicosanoids in phenotypes of women with PCOS. These women, however, have significantly lower concentration of inflammatory mediators than potentially healthy women from the control group. Dietary intervention leads to a significant (p<0.01 increase in the synthesis of proinflammatory mediators, reaching similar levels as in the control group. The development of inflammatory reaction in both phenotypes of women with PCOS is similar. The pathways for synthesis of proinflammatory mediators in women with PCOS are dormant, but can be stimulated through a reduction diet. Three-month period of lifestyle change may be too short to stimulate the pathways inhibiting inflammatory process.

  6. A study to determine whether targeted education significantly improves the perception of human torture in medical students in India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husain, Munawwar; Ghaffar, Usama B; Usmani, Jawed Ahmad; Rivzi, Shameem Jahan

    2010-08-01

    This study was undertaken to find out the knowledge of torture in MBBS students. A fair comparison was done by selecting two groups of medical students; one, to whom torture was not taught ie, pretaught group (PrTG, n = 125), and second, to whom torture was taught in classroom ie, post-taught group (PoTG, n = 110) in more than one sessions. The topic on torture was taught under many headings maximising the effort to cover as much as possible; namely, definition, geographical distribution, types of torture (physical, psychological and sexual), post-torture sequelae, sociopolitical environment prevailing in the country, doctors' involvement in torture, rehabilitation of torture victims and the UNO's role in containment of torture. In all a questionnaire was designed having MCQ types on these aspects. It was found that significant level of difference in perception and knowledge about torture existed amongst the groups, and this was further accentuated in medical and non-medical intratopics. 'P' value of each question was computed separately. It was found that the study was statistically significant and reestablished the need of fortifying the gossameric firmament of education specific to torture.

  7. A high-resolution processing technique for improving the energy of weak signal based on matching pursuit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuyan Wang

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes a new method to improve the resolution of the seismic signal and to compensate the energy of weak seismic signal based on matching pursuit. With a dictionary of Morlet wavelets, matching pursuit algorithm can decompose a seismic trace into a series of wavelets. We abstract complex-trace attributes from analytical expressions to shrink the search range of amplitude, frequency and phase. In addition, considering the level of correlation between constituent wavelets and average wavelet abstracted from well-seismic calibration, we can obtain the search range of scale which is an important adaptive parameter to control the width of wavelet in time and the bandwidth of frequency. Hence, the efficiency of selection of proper wavelets is improved by making first a preliminary estimate and refining a local selecting range. After removal of noise wavelets, we integrate useful wavelets which should be firstly executed by adaptive spectral whitening technique. This approach can improve the resolutions of seismic signal and enhance the energy of weak wavelets simultaneously. The application results of real seismic data show this method has a good perspective of application.

  8. Drilling for improvement : Statoil and Halliburton report significant cost savings and more accurate well placement at the Leismer demonstration project

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jaremko, D.

    2010-07-15

    This article discussed new improvements in steam assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) made by Statoil and Halliburton at the Leismer demonstration project. The Leismer project is Statoil's inaugural project in oil sands development, and will have a capacity to produce 10,000 barrels per day through 4 separate well pads with 23 well pairs. Challenges to the project included the long lateral sections required for the well pairs to remain parallel to each other while remaining within the target formation. An azimuthal deep resistivity (ADR) tool was used to detect the proximity of the wellbore to shale and water zones. Use of the tool allowed operators to modify the planned well trajectory in order to optimize placements within the reservoir. A rotary steerable system (RSS) was used increase injection times. The project was completed 6 to 8 weeks ahead of schedule. Applications have now been filed for a further 10 phases that will produce 240,000 barrels per day. 1 fig.

  9. Icariin combined with human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells significantly improve the impaired kidney function in chronic renal failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wen; Wang, Li; Chu, Xiaoqian; Cui, Huantian; Bian, Yuhong

    2017-04-01

    At present, the main therapy for chronic renal failure (CRF) is dialysis and renal transplantation, but neither obtains satisfactory results. Human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (huMSCs) are isolated from the fetal umbilical cord which has a high self-renewal and multi-directional differentiation potential. Icariin (ICA), a kidney-tonifying Chinese Medicine can enhance the multipotency of huMSCs. Therefore, this work seeks to employ the use of ICA-treated huMSCs for the treatment of chronic renal failure. Blood urea nitrogen and creatinine (Cr) analyses showed amelioration of functional parameters in ICA-treated huMSCs for the treatment of CRF rats at 3, 7, and 14 days after transplantation. ICA-treated huMSCs can obviously increase the number of cells in injured renal tissues at 3, 7, and 14 days after transplantation by optical molecular imaging system. Hematoxylin-eosin staining demonstrated that ICA-treated huMSCs reduced the levels of fibrosis in CRF rats at 14 days after transplantation. Superoxide dismutase and Malondialdehyde analyses showed that ICA-treated huMSCs reduced the oxidative damage in CRF rats. Moreover, transplantation with ICA-treated huMSCs decreased inflammatory responses, promoted the expression of growth factors, and protected injured renal tissues. Taken together, our findings suggest that ICA-treated huMSCs could improve the kidney function in CRF rats.

  10. Comparison Study of Power System Small Signal Stability Improvement Using SSSC and STATCOM

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hu, Weihao; Su, Chi; Fang, Jiakun

    2013-01-01

    the connected power system, both SSSC and STATCOM are able to participate in the power system inter-area oscillation damping by changing the compensated reactance or the provided reactive power. This paper analyses the influence of SSSC and STATCOM on power system small signal stability. The damping controller...... schemes for SSSC and STATCOM are presented and discussed. The IEEE 39-bus New England system model as the test system is built in DIgSIELNT PowerFactory, in which the damping control strategies for both SSSC and STATCOM are validated by time domain simulations and modal analysis. Furthermore, comparison......A static synchronous series compensator (SSSC) has the ability to emulate a reactance in series with the connected transmission line. A static synchronous compensator (STATCOM) is able to provide the reactive power to an electricity network. When fed with some supplementary signals from...

  11. Improvement of Fabry Disease-Related Gastrointestinal Symptoms in a Significant Proportion of Female Patients Treated with Agalsidase Beta

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wilcox, William R; Feldt-Rasmussen, Ulla; Martins, Ana Maria

    2018-01-01

    of organ involvement. Although variable, gastrointestinal symptoms are among the most common and significant early clinical manifestations; they tend to persist into adulthood if left untreated. To further understand the effects of sustained enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) with agalsidase beta......Fabry disease, an X-linked inherited lysosomal storage disorder, is caused by mutations in the gene encoding α-galactosidase, GLA. In patients with Fabry disease, glycosphingolipids accumulate in various cell types, triggering a range of cellular and tissue responses that result in a wide spectrum...... on gastrointestinal symptoms in heterozygotes, a data analysis of female patients enrolled in the Fabry Registry was conducted. To be included, females of any age must have received agalsidase beta (average dose 1.0 mg/kg every 2 weeks) for at least 2.5 years. Measured outcomes were self-reported gastrointestinal...

  12. Towards an improved prediction of the free radical scavenging potency of flavonoids: the significance of double PCET mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amić, Ana; Marković, Zoran; Dimitrić Marković, Jasmina M; Stepanić, Višnja; Lučić, Bono; Amić, Dragan

    2014-01-01

    The 1H(+)/1e(-) and 2H(+)/2e(-) proton-coupled electron transfer (PCET) processes of free radical scavenging by flavonoids were theoretically studied for aqueous and lipid environments using the PM6 and PM7 methods. The results reported here indicate that the significant contribution of the second PCET mechanism, resulting in the formation of a quinone/quinone methide, effectively discriminates the active from inactive flavonoids. The predictive potency of descriptors related to the energetics of second PCET mechanisms (the second O-H bond dissociation enthalpy (BDE2) related to hydrogen atom transfer (HAT) mechanism, and the second electron transfer enthalpy (ETE2) related to sequential proton loss electron transfer (SPLET) mechanism) are superior to the currently used indices, which are related to the first 1H(+)/1e(-) processes, and could serve as primary descriptors in development of the QSAR (quantitative structure-activity relationships) of flavonoids. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Improving the signal-to-noise ratio in mass and ion kinetic energy spectrometers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brenton, A.G.; Beynon, J.H.; Morgan, R.P.

    1979-01-01

    The signal-to-noise ratio in mass and ion kinetic energy spectrometers is limited by noise generated from the presence of scattered ions and neutrals. Methods of eliminating this are illustrated with reference to the ZAB-2F instrument manufactured by VG-Micromass Ltd. It is estimated that after the modifications the instrument is capable, on a routine basis, of measuring peaks corresponding to the arrival of ions at a rate of the order of 1 ion s -1 . (Auth.)

  14. Pt-decorated GaN nanowires with significant improvement in H2 gas-sensing performance at room temperature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdullah, Q N; Yam, F K; Hassan, Z; Bououdina, M

    2015-12-15

    Superior sensitivity towards H2 gas was successfully achieved with Pt-decorated GaN nanowires (NWs) gas sensor. GaN NWs were fabricated via chemical vapor deposition (CVD) route. Morphology (field emission scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy) and crystal structure (high resolution X-ray diffraction) characterizations of the as-synthesized nanostructures demonstrated the formation of GaN NWs having a wurtzite structure, zigzaged shape and an average diameter of 30-166nm. The Pt-decorated GaN NWs sensor shows a high response of 250-2650% upon exposure to H2 gas concentration from 7 to 1000ppm respectively at room temperature (RT), and then increases to about 650-4100% when increasing the operating temperature up to 75°C. The gas-sensing measurements indicated that the Pt-decorated GaN NWs based sensor exhibited efficient detection of H2 at low concentration with excellent sensitivity, repeatability, and free hysteresis phenomena over a period of time of 100min. The large surface-to-volume ratio of GaN NWs and the catalytic activity of Pt metal are the most influential factors leading to the enhancement of H2 gas-sensing performances through the improvement of the interaction between the target molecules (H2) and the sensing NWs surface. The attractive low-cost, low power consumption and high-performance of the resultant decorated GaN NWs gas sensor assure their uppermost potential for H2 gas sensor working at low operating temperature. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Exploiting magnetic resonance angiography imaging improves model estimation of BOLD signal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhenghui Hu

    Full Text Available The change of BOLD signal relies heavily upon the resting blood volume fraction ([Formula: see text] associated with regional vasculature. However, existing hemodynamic data assimilation studies pretermit such concern. They simply assign the value in a physiologically plausible range to get over ill-conditioning of the assimilation problem and fail to explore actual [Formula: see text]. Such performance might lead to unreliable model estimation. In this work, we present the first exploration of the influence of [Formula: see text] on fMRI data assimilation, where actual [Formula: see text] within a given cortical area was calibrated by an MR angiography experiment and then was augmented into the assimilation scheme. We have investigated the impact of [Formula: see text] on single-region data assimilation and multi-region data assimilation (dynamic cause modeling, DCM in a classical flashing checkerboard experiment. Results show that the employment of an assumed [Formula: see text] in fMRI data assimilation is only suitable for fMRI signal reconstruction and activation detection grounded on this signal, and not suitable for estimation of unobserved states and effective connectivity study. We thereby argue that introducing physically realistic [Formula: see text] in the assimilation process may provide more reliable estimation of physiological information, which contributes to a better understanding of the underlying hemodynamic processes. Such an effort is valuable and should be well appreciated.

  16. Improved methods for signal processing in measurements of mercury by Tekran® 2537A and 2537B instruments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ambrose, Jesse L.

    2017-12-01

    Atmospheric Hg measurements are commonly carried out using Tekran® Instruments Corporation's model 2537 Hg vapor analyzers, which employ gold amalgamation preconcentration sampling and detection by thermal desorption (TD) and atomic fluorescence spectrometry (AFS). A generally overlooked and poorly characterized source of analytical uncertainty in those measurements is the method by which the raw Hg atomic fluorescence (AF) signal is processed. Here I describe new software-based methods for processing the raw signal from the Tekran® 2537 instruments, and I evaluate the performances of those methods together with the standard Tekran® internal signal processing method. For test datasets from two Tekran® instruments (one 2537A and one 2537B), I estimate that signal processing uncertainties in Hg loadings determined with the Tekran® method are within ±[1 % + 1.2 pg] and ±[6 % + 0.21 pg], respectively. I demonstrate that the Tekran® method can produce significant low biases (≥ 5 %) not only at low Hg sample loadings (< 5 pg) but also at tropospheric background concentrations of gaseous elemental mercury (GEM) and total mercury (THg) (˜ 1 to 2 ng m-3) under typical operating conditions (sample loadings of 5-10 pg). Signal processing uncertainties associated with the Tekran® method can therefore represent a significant unaccounted for addition to the overall ˜ 10 to 15 % uncertainty previously estimated for Tekran®-based GEM and THg measurements. Signal processing bias can also add significantly to uncertainties in Tekran®-based gaseous oxidized mercury (GOM) and particle-bound mercury (PBM) measurements, which often derive from Hg sample loadings < 5 pg. In comparison, estimated signal processing uncertainties associated with the new methods described herein are low, ranging from within ±0.053 pg, when the Hg thermal desorption peaks are defined manually, to within ±[2 % + 0.080 pg] when peak definition is automated. Mercury limits of detection (LODs

  17. Using optical fibers with different modes to improve the signal-to-noise ratio of diffuse correlation spectroscopy flow-oximeter measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Lian; Lin, Yu; Shang, Yu; Shelton, Brent J.; Yu, Guoqiang

    2013-03-01

    The dual-wavelength diffuse correlation spectroscopy (DCS) flow-oximeter is an emerging technique enabling simultaneous measurements of blood flow and blood oxygenation changes in deep tissues. High signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) is crucial when applying DCS technologies in the study of human tissues where the detected signals are usually very weak. In this study, single-mode, few-mode, and multimode fibers are compared to explore the possibility of improving the SNR of DCS flow-oximeter measurements. Experiments on liquid phantom solutions and in vivo muscle tissues show only slight improvements in flow measurements when using the few-mode fiber compared with using the single-mode fiber. However, light intensities detected by the few-mode and multimode fibers are increased, leading to significant SNR improvements in detections of phantom optical property and tissue blood oxygenation. The outcomes from this study provide useful guidance for the selection of optical fibers to improve DCS flow-oximeter measurements.

  18. Amphoteric Ion-Exchange Membranes with Significantly Improved Vanadium Barrier Properties for All-Vanadium Redox Flow Batteries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nibel, Olga; Rojek, Tomasz; Schmidt, Thomas J; Gubler, Lorenz

    2017-07-10

    All-vanadium redox flow batteries (VRBs) have attracted considerable interest as promising energy-storage devices that can allow the efficient utilization of renewable energy sources. The membrane, which separates the porous electrodes in a redox flow cell, is one of the key components in VRBs. High rates of crossover of vanadium ions and water through the membrane impair the efficiency and capacity of a VRB. Thus, membranes with low permeation rate of vanadium species and water are required, also characterized by low resistance and stability in the VRB environment. Here, we present a new design concept for amphoteric ion-exchange membranes, based on radiation-induced grafting of vinylpyridine into an ethylene tetrafluoroethylene base film and a two-step functionalization to introduce cationic and anionic exchange sites, respectively. During long-term cycling, redox flow cells containing these membranes showed higher efficiency, less pronounced electrolyte imbalance, and significantly reduced capacity decay compared to the cells with the benchmark material Nafion 117. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  19. Post-exposure Treatment with Anti-rabies VHH and Vaccine Significantly Improves Protection of Mice from Lethal Rabies Infection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terryn, Sanne; Francart, Aurélie; Rommelaere, Heidi; Stortelers, Catelijne; Van Gucht, Steven

    2016-01-01

    Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) against rabies infection consists of a combination of passive immunisation with plasma-derived human or equine immune globulins and active immunisation with vaccine delivered shortly after exposure. Since anti-rabies immune globulins are expensive and scarce, there is a need for cheaper alternatives that can be produced more consistently. Previously, we generated potent virus-neutralising VHH, also called Nanobodies, against the rabies glycoprotein that are effectively preventing lethal disease in an in vivo mouse model. The VHH domain is the smallest antigen-binding functional fragment of camelid heavy chain-only antibodies that can be manufactured in microbial expression systems. In the current study we evaluated the efficacy of half-life extended anti-rabies VHH in combination with vaccine for PEP in an intranasal rabies infection model in mice. The PEP combination therapy of systemic anti-rabies VHH and intramuscular vaccine significantly delayed the onset of disease compared to treatment with anti-rabies VHH alone, prolonged median survival time (35 versus 14 days) and decreased mortality (60% versus 19% survival rate), when treated 24 hours after rabies virus challenge. Vaccine alone was unable to rescue mice from lethal disease. As reported also for immune globulins, some interference of anti-rabies VHH with the antigenicity of the vaccine was observed, but this did not impede the synergistic effect. Post exposure treatment with vaccine and human anti-rabies immune globulins was unable to protect mice from lethal challenge. Anti-rabies VHH and vaccine act synergistically to protect mice after rabies virus exposure, which further validates the possible use of anti-rabies VHH for rabies PEP. PMID:27483431

  20. Post-exposure Treatment with Anti-rabies VHH and Vaccine Significantly Improves Protection of Mice from Lethal Rabies Infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanne Terryn

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP against rabies infection consists of a combination of passive immunisation with plasma-derived human or equine immune globulins and active immunisation with vaccine delivered shortly after exposure. Since anti-rabies immune globulins are expensive and scarce, there is a need for cheaper alternatives that can be produced more consistently. Previously, we generated potent virus-neutralising VHH, also called Nanobodies, against the rabies glycoprotein that are effectively preventing lethal disease in an in vivo mouse model. The VHH domain is the smallest antigen-binding functional fragment of camelid heavy chain-only antibodies that can be manufactured in microbial expression systems. In the current study we evaluated the efficacy of half-life extended anti-rabies VHH in combination with vaccine for PEP in an intranasal rabies infection model in mice. The PEP combination therapy of systemic anti-rabies VHH and intramuscular vaccine significantly delayed the onset of disease compared to treatment with anti-rabies VHH alone, prolonged median survival time (35 versus 14 days and decreased mortality (60% versus 19% survival rate, when treated 24 hours after rabies virus challenge. Vaccine alone was unable to rescue mice from lethal disease. As reported also for immune globulins, some interference of anti-rabies VHH with the antigenicity of the vaccine was observed, but this did not impede the synergistic effect. Post exposure treatment with vaccine and human anti-rabies immune globulins was unable to protect mice from lethal challenge. Anti-rabies VHH and vaccine act synergistically to protect mice after rabies virus exposure, which further validates the possible use of anti-rabies VHH for rabies PEP.

  1. Two improved methods for testing ADC parametric faults by digital input signals

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sheng, Xiaoqin; Kerkhoff, Hans G.

    2009-01-01

    In this paper, two improved methods are presented extending our previous work. The first one improves the results by adjusting the voltage levels of the input pulse wave stimulus. Compared with the sine wave input stimulus, the four-level pulse wave can detect even more faulty cases with the offset

  2. Soft Cysteine Signaling Network: The Functional Significance of Cysteine in Protein Function and the Soft Acids/Bases Thiol Chemistry That Facilitates Cysteine Modification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wible, Ryan S; Sutter, Thomas R

    2017-03-20

    The unique biophysical and electronic properties of cysteine make this molecule one of the most biologically critical amino acids in the proteome. The defining sulfur atom in cysteine is much larger than the oxygen and nitrogen atoms more commonly found in the other amino acids. As a result of its size, the valence electrons of sulfur are highly polarizable. Unique protein microenvironments favor the polarization of sulfur, thus increasing the overt reactivity of cysteine. Here, we provide a brief overview of the endogenous generation of reactive oxygen and electrophilic species and specific examples of enzymes and transcription factors in which the oxidation or covalent modification of cysteine in those proteins modulates their function. The perspective concludes with a discussion of cysteine chemistry and biophysics, the hard and soft acids and bases model, and the proposal of the Soft Cysteine Signaling Network: a hypothesis proposing the existence of a complex signaling network governed by layered chemical reactivity and cross-talk in which the chemical modification of reactive cysteine in biological networks triggers the reorganization of intracellular biochemistry to mitigate spikes in endogenous or exogenous oxidative or electrophilic stress.

  3. Constitutive overexpression of the TaNF-YB4 gene in transgenic wheat significantly improves grain yield.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yadav, Dinesh; Shavrukov, Yuri; Bazanova, Natalia; Chirkova, Larissa; Borisjuk, Nikolai; Kovalchuk, Nataliya; Ismagul, Ainur; Parent, Boris; Langridge, Peter; Hrmova, Maria; Lopato, Sergiy

    2015-11-01

    Heterotrimeric nuclear factors Y (NF-Ys) are involved in regulation of various vital functions in all eukaryotic organisms. Although a number of NF-Y subunits have been characterized in model plants, only a few have been functionally evaluated in crops. In this work, a number of genes encoding NF-YB and NF-YC subunits were isolated from drought-tolerant wheat (Triticum aestivum L. cv. RAC875), and the impact of the overexpression of TaNF-YB4 in the Australian wheat cultivar Gladius was investigated. TaNF-YB4 was isolated as a result of two consecutive yeast two-hybrid (Y2H) screens, where ZmNF-YB2a was used as a starting bait. A new NF-YC subunit, designated TaNF-YC15, was isolated in the first Y2H screen and used as bait in a second screen, which identified two wheat NF-YB subunits, TaNF-YB2 and TaNF-YB4. Three-dimensional modelling of a TaNF-YB2/TaNF-YC15 dimer revealed structural determinants that may underlie interaction selectivity. The TaNF-YB4 gene was placed under the control of the strong constitutive polyubiquitin promoter from maize and introduced into wheat by biolistic bombardment. The growth and yield components of several independent transgenic lines with up-regulated levels of TaNF-YB4 were evaluated under well-watered conditions (T1-T3 generations) and under mild drought (T2 generation). Analysis of T2 plants was performed in large deep containers in conditions close to field trials. Under optimal watering conditions, transgenic wheat plants produced significantly more spikes but other yield components did not change. This resulted in a 20-30% increased grain yield compared with untransformed control plants. Under water-limited conditions transgenic lines maintained parity in yield performance. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.

  4. Marrying Step Feed with Secondary Clarifier Improvements to Significantly Increase Peak Wet Weather Treatment Capacity: An Integrated Methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daigger, Glen T; Siczka, John S; Smith, Thomas F; Frank, David A; McCorquodale, J A

    2017-08-01

      The need to increase the peak wet weather secondary treatment capacity of the City of Akron, Ohio, Water Reclamation Facility (WRF) provided the opportunity to test an integrated methodology for maximizing the peak wet weather secondary treatment capacity of activated sludge systems. An initial investigation, consisting of process modeling of the secondary treatment system and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis of the existing relatively shallow secondary clarifiers (3.3 and 3.7 m sidewater depth in 30.5 m diameter units), indicated that a significant increase in capacity from 416 000 to 684 000 m3/d or more was possible by adding step feed capabilities to the existing bioreactors and upgrading the existing secondary clarifiers. One of the six treatment units at the WRF was modified, and an extensive 2-year testing program was conducted to determine the total peak wet weather secondary treatment capacity achievable. The results demonstrated that a peak wet weather secondary treatment capacity approaching 974 000 m3/d is possible as long as secondary clarifier solids and hydraulic loadings could be separately controlled using the step feed capability provided. Excellent sludge settling characteristics are routinely experienced at the City of Akron WRF, raising concerns that the identified peak wet weather secondary treatment capacity could not be maintained should sludge settling characteristics deteriorate for some reason. Computational fluid dynamics analysis indicated that the impact of the deterioration of sludge settling characteristics could be mitigated and the identified peak wet weather secondary treatment capacity maintained by further use of the step feed capability provided to further reduce secondary clarifier solids loading rates at the identified high surface overflow rates. The results also demonstrated that effluent limits not only for total suspended solids (TSS) and five-day carbonaceous biochemical oxygen demand (cBOD5) could be

  5. A Survey on Optimal Signal Processing Techniques Applied to Improve the Performance of Mechanical Sensors in Automotive Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wilmar Hernandez

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper a survey on recent applications of optimal signal processing techniques to improve the performance of mechanical sensors is made. Here, a comparison between classical filters and optimal filters for automotive sensors is made, and the current state of the art of the application of robust and optimal control and signal processing techniques to the design of the intelligent (or smart sensors that today’s cars need is presented through several experimental results that show that the fusion of intelligent sensors and optimal signal processing techniques is the clear way to go. However, the switch between the traditional methods of designing automotive sensors and the new ones cannot be done overnight because there are some open research issues that have to be solved. This paper draws attention to one of the open research issues and tries to arouse researcher’s interest in the fusion of intelligent sensors and optimal signal processing techniques.

  6. Combination of digital signal processing methods towards an improved analysis algorithm for structural health monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pentaris, Fragkiskos P.; Makris, John P.

    2013-04-01

    In Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) is of great importance to reveal valuable information from the recorded SHM data that could be used to predict or indicate structural fault or damage in a building. In this work a combination of digital signal processing methods, namely FFT along with Wavelet Transform is applied, together with a proposed algorithm to study frequency dispersion, in order to depict non-linear characteristics of SHM data collected in two university buildings under natural or anthropogenic excitation. The selected buildings are of great importance from civil protection point of view, as there are the premises of a public higher education institute, undergoing high use, stress, visit from academic staff and students. The SHM data are collected from two neighboring buildings that have different age (4 and 18 years old respectively). Proposed digital signal processing methods are applied to the data, presenting a comparison of the structural behavior of both buildings in response to seismic activity, weather conditions and man-made activity. Acknowledgments This work was supported in part by the Archimedes III Program of the Ministry of Education of Greece, through the Operational Program "Educational and Lifelong Learning", in the framework of the project entitled «Interdisciplinary Multi-Scale Research of Earthquake Physics and Seismotectonics at the front of the Hellenic Arc (IMPACT-ARC) » and is co-financed by the European Union (European Social Fund) and Greek National Fund.

  7. Analysis of Correlation in MEMS Gyroscope Array and its Influence on Accuracy Improvement for the Combined Angular Rate Signal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liang Xue

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Obtaining a correlation factor is a prerequisite for fusing multiple outputs of a mircoelectromechanical system (MEMS gyroscope array and evaluating accuracy improvement. In this paper, a mathematical statistics method is established to analyze and obtain the practical correlation factor of a MEMS gyroscope array, which solves the problem of determining the Kalman filter (KF covariance matrix Q and fusing the multiple gyroscope signals. The working principle and mathematical model of the sensor array fusion is briefly described, and then an optimal estimate of input rate signal is achieved by using of a steady-state KF gain in an off-line estimation approach. Both theoretical analysis and simulation show that the negative correlation factor has a favorable influence on accuracy improvement. Additionally, a four-gyro array system composed of four discrete individual gyroscopes was developed to test the correlation factor and its influence on KF accuracy improvement. The result showed that correlation factors have both positive and negative values; in particular, there exist differences for correlation factor between the different units in the array. The test results also indicated that the Angular Random Walk (ARW of 1.57°/h0.5 and bias drift of 224.2°/h for a single gyroscope were reduced to 0.33°/h0.5 and 47.8°/h with some negative correlation factors existing in the gyroscope array, making a noise reduction factor of about 4.7, which is higher than that of a uncorrelated four-gyro array. The overall accuracy of the combined angular rate signal can be further improved if the negative correlation factors in the gyroscope array become larger.

  8. A Narrow and Highly Significant Linkage Signal for Severe Bipolar Disorder in the Chromosome 5q33 Region in Latin American Pedigrees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jasinska, A.J.; Service, S.; Jawaheer, D.; DeYoung, J.; Levinson, M.; Zhang, Z.; Kremeyer, B.; Muller, H.; Aldana, I.; Garcia, J.; Restrepo, G.; Lopez, C.; Palacio, C.; Duque, C.; Parra, M.; Vega, J.; Ortiz, D.; Bedoya, G.; Mathews, C.; Davanzo, P.; Fournier, E.; Bejarano, J.; Ramirez, M.; Ortiz, C. Araya; Araya, X.; Molina, J.; Sabatti, C.; Reus, V.; Ospina, J.; Macaya, G.; Ruiz-Linares, A.; Freimer, N.B.

    2016-01-01

    We previously reported linkage of bipolar disorder to 5q33-q34 in families from two closely related population isolates, the Central Valley of Costa Rica (CVCR) and Antioquia, Colombia (CO). Here we present follow up results from fine-scale mapping in large CVCR and CO families segregating severe bipolar disorder, BP-I, and in 343 population trios/duos from CVCR and CO. Employing densely spaced SNPs to fine map the prior linkage peak region increases linkage evidence and clarifies the position of the putative BP-I locus. We performed two-point linkage analysis with 1134 SNPs in an approximately 9 Mb region between markers D5S410 and D5S422. Combining pedigrees from CVCR and CO yields a LOD score of 4.9 at SNP rs10035961. Two other SNPs (rs7721142 and rs1422795) within the same 94 kb region also displayed LOD scores greater than 4. This linkage peak coincides with our prior microsatellite results and suggests a narrowed BP-I susceptibility regions in these families. To investigate if the locus implicated in the familial form of BP-I also contributes to disease risk in the population, we followed up the family results with association analysis in duo and trio samples, obtaining signals within 2 Mb of the peak linkage signal in the pedigrees; rs12523547 and rs267015 (P = 0.00004 and 0.00016, respectively) in the CO sample and rs244960 in the CVCR sample and the combined sample, with P = 0.00032 and 0.00016, respectively. It remains unclear whether these association results reflect the same locus contributing to BP susceptibility within the extended pedigrees. PMID:19319892

  9. Improvements to the extraction of an AlGaN/GaN HEMT small-signal model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pu Yan; Pang Lei; Wang Liang; Chen Xiaojuan; Li Chengzhan; Liu Xinyu

    2009-01-01

    The accurate extraction of AlGaN/GaN HEMT small-signal models, which is an important step in large-signal modeling, can exactly reflect the microwave performance of the physical structure of the device. A new method of extracting the parasitic elements is presented, and an open dummy structure is introduced to obtain the parasitic capacitances. With a Schottky resistor in the gate, a new method is developed to extract R g . In order to characterize the changes of the depletion region under various drain voltages, the drain delay factor is involved in the output conductance of the device. Compared to the traditional method, the fitting of S 11 and S 22 is improved, and f T and f max can be better predicted. The validity of the proposed method is verified with excellent correlation between the measured and simulated S-parameters in the range of 0.1 to 26.1 GHz. (semiconductor devices)

  10. Exercise training improves blood flow to contracting skeletal muscle of older men via enhanced cGMP signaling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Piil, Peter Bergmann; Smith Jørgensen, Tue; Egelund, Jon

    2018-01-01

    Physical activity has the potential to offset age-related impairments in the regulation of blood flow and O2 delivery to the exercising muscles; however, the mechanisms underlying this effect of physical activity remain poorly understood. The present study examined the role of cGMP in training...... a period of aerobic high-intensity exercise training. To determine the role of cGMP signaling, pharmacological inhibition of phosphodiesterase 5 (PDE5) was performed. Before training, inhibition of PDE5 increased (P... group; however, these effects of PDE5 inhibition were not detected after training. These findings suggest a role for enhanced cGMP signaling in the training-induced improvement of regulation of blood flow in contracting skeletal muscle of older men....

  11. Improving the spatial resolution in CZT detectors using charge sharing effect and transient signal analysis: Simulation study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zheng, Xiaoqing; Cheng, Zeng [Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, McMaster University (Canada); Deen, M. Jamal, E-mail: jamal@mcmaster.ca [Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, McMaster University (Canada); School of Biomedical Engineering, McMaster University (Canada); Peng, Hao, E-mail: penghao@mcmaster.ca [Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, McMaster University (Canada); School of Biomedical Engineering, McMaster University (Canada); Department of Medical Physics, McMaster University, Ontario L8S 4K1, Hamilton (Canada)

    2016-02-01

    Cadmium Zinc Telluride (CZT) semiconductor detectors are capable of providing superior energy resolution and three-dimensional position information of gamma ray interactions in a large variety of fields, including nuclear physics, gamma-ray imaging and nuclear medicine. Some dedicated Positron Emission Tomography (PET) systems, for example, for breast cancer detection, require higher contrast recovery and more accurate event location compared with a whole-body PET system. The spatial resolution is currently limited by electrode pitch in CZT detectors. A straightforward approach to increase the spatial resolution is by decreasing the detector electrode pitch, but this leads to higher fabrication cost and a larger number of readout channels. In addition, inter-electrode charge spreading can negate any improvement in spatial resolution. In this work, we studied the feasibility of achieving sub-pitch spatial resolution in CZT detectors using two methods: charge sharing effect and transient signal analysis. We noted that their valid ranges of usage were complementary. The dependences of their corresponding valid ranges on electrode design, depth-of-interaction (DOI), voltage bias and signal triggering threshold were investigated. The implementation of these two methods in both pixelated and cross-strip configuration of CZT detectors were discussed. Our results show that the valid range of charge sharing effect increases as a function of DOI, but decreases with increasing gap width and bias voltage. For a CZT detector of 5 mm thickness, 100 µm gap and biased at 400 V, the valid range of charge sharing effect was found to be about 112.3 µm around the gap center. This result complements the valid range of the transient signal analysis within one electrode pitch. For a signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of ~17 and preliminary measurements, the sub-pitch spatial resolution is expected to be ~30 µm and ~250 µm for the charge sharing and transient signal analysis methods

  12. Improvement of emotional healthcare system with stress detection from ECG signal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tivatansakul, S; Ohkura, M

    2015-01-01

    Our emotional healthcare system is designed to cope with users' negative emotions in daily life. To make the system more intelligent, we integrated emotion recognition by facial expression to provide appropriate services based on user's current emotional state. Our emotion recognition by facial expression has confusion issue to recognize some positive, neutral and negative emotions that make the emotional healthcare system provide a relaxation service even though users don't have negative emotions. Therefore, to increase the effectiveness of the system to provide the relaxation service, we integrate stress detection from ECG signal. The stress detection might be able to address the confusion issue of emotion recognition by facial expression to provide the service. Indeed, our results show that integration of stress detection increases the effectiveness and efficiency of the emotional healthcare system to provide services.

  13. Developmental Mechanisms Underlying Improved Contrast Thresholds for Discriminations of Orientation Signals Embedded in Noise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seong Taek eJeon

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available We combined an external noise paradigm with an efficient procedure for obtaining contrast thresholds (Lesmes et al., 2006 in order to model developmental changes during childhood. Specifically, we measured the contrast thresholds of 5-, 7-, 9-year-olds and adults (n = 20/age in a two alternative forced-choice orientation discrimination task over a wide range of external noise levels and at three levels of accuracy. Overall, as age increased, contrast thresholds decreased over the entire range of external noise levels tested. The decrease was greatest between 5 and 7 years of age. The reduction in threshold after age 5 was greater in the high than the low external noise region, a pattern implying greater tolerance to the irrelevant background noise as children became older. To model the mechanisms underlying these developmental changes in terms of internal noise components, we adapted the original perceptual template model (Lu and Dosher, 1998 and normalized the magnitude of performance changes against the performance of 5-year-olds. The resulting model provided an excellent fit (r2 = 0.985 to the contrast thresholds at multiple levels of accuracy (60, 75, and 90% across a wide range of external noise levels. The improvements in contrast thresholds with age were best modelled by a combination of reductions in internal additive noise, reductions in internal multiplicative noise, and improvements in excluding external noise by template retuning. In line with the data, the improvement was greatest between 5 and 7 years of age, accompanied by a 39% reduction in additive noise, 71% reduction in multiplicative noise, and 45% improvement in external noise exclusion. The modelled improvements likely reflect developmental changes at the cortical level, rather than changes in front-end structural properties (Kiorpes et al., 2003.

  14. Improved Microwave Photonic Links via Receive-Side Nonlinear Signal Processing, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We propose to significantly enhance the state-of-the-art of photonically-assisted microwave measurement and distribution systems by incorporating a highly efficient...

  15. Prognostic significance of signal transducer and activator of transcription 5 and 5b expression in Epstein-Barr virus-positive patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diamantopoulos, Panagiotis T; Sofotasiou, Maria; Georgoussi, Zafiroula; Giannakopoulou, Nefeli; Papadopoulou, Vasiliki; Galanopoulos, Athanasios; Kontandreopoulou, Elina; Zervakis, Panagiotis; Pallaki, Paschalina; Kalala, Fani; Kyrtsonis, Marie-Christine; Dimitrakopoulou, Aglaia; Vassilakopoulos, Theodoros; Angelopoulou, Maria; Spanakis, Nikolaos; Viniou, Nora-Athina

    2016-09-01

    Signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) proteins have been intensively studied in hematologic malignancies, and the efficacy of agents against STATs in lymphomas is already under research. We investigated the expression of total STAT5 and STAT5b in peripheral blood samples of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) in correlation with the presence of Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) and its major oncoprotein (latent membrane protein 1, LMP1). The EBV load was measured in the peripheral blood by real-time PCR for the BXLF1 gene and the levels of LMP1 by PCR and ELISA. Western blotting was performed for total STAT5 and STAT5b in protein extracts. STAT5b was only expressed in patients (not in healthy subjects) and STAT5 but particularly STAT5b expression was correlated with the presence of the virus (77.3% vs. 51.2%, P = 0.006 for STAT5b) and to the expression of LMP1 (58.3% vs. 21.6%, P = 0.011 for STAT5b). Moreover, the expression of STAT5b and the presence of EBV and LMP1 were strongly negatively correlated with the overall survival of the patients (log-rank test P = 0.011, 0.015, 0.006, respectively). Double positive (for EBV and STAT5b) patients had the lowest overall survival (log-rank test P = 0.013). This is the first report of a survival disadvantage of EBV+ patients with CLL, and the first time that STAT5b expression is correlated with survival. The correlation of STAT5 expression with the presence of the virus, along with our survival correlations defines a subgroup of patients with CLL that may benefit from anti-STAT agents. © 2016 The Authors. Cancer Medicine published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Inhibition of CXCL12 signaling attenuates the postischemic immune response and improves functional recovery after stroke

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ruscher, Karsten; Kuric, Enida; Liu, Yawei

    2013-01-01

    cell-derived factor-1 (CXCL12). To mimic beneficial effects of EE, we studied the impact of inhibiting CXCL12 action on functional recovery after transient MCAO (tMCAO). Rats treated with the specific CXCL12 receptor antagonist 1-[4-(1,4,8,11-tetrazacyclotetradec-1-ylmethyl)phenyl]methyl]-1......After stroke, brain inflammation in the ischemic hemisphere hampers brain tissue reorganization and functional recovery. Housing rats in an enriched environment (EE) dramatically improves recovery of lost neurologic functions after experimental stroke. We show here that rats housed in EE after......,4,8,11-tetrazacyclo-tetradecan (AMD3100) showed improved recovery compared with saline-treated rats after tMCAO, without a concomitant reduction in infarct size. This was accompanied by a reduction of infiltrating immune cells in the ischemic hemisphere, particularly cluster of differentiation 3-positive (CD3...

  17. Improvement of density control by feedback on Langmuir probe signals in Tore Supra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gunn, J.; Bucalossi, J.; Costanzo, L.; Grisolia, C.; Ghendrih, Ph.; Grosman, A.; Loarer, T.; Martin, G.; Monier-Garbet, P.; Moulin, D.; Pascal, J.Y.; Saint-Laurent, F.

    1999-12-01

    Real time control of deuterium or helium gas injection by feedback on Langmuir probe signals is implemented in Tore Supra ergodic divertor discharges. The feedback schemes are based on the robust experimental observation that the density limit coincides with edge temperature T e ∼ 10 eV. Three control algorithms are used: (1) proportional feedback on the central line-averaged density with real-time attenuation of the system gain and security cut-off of the gas injection if the edge temperature becomes too low; (2) proportional feedback on the central line-averaged density with security cut-off controlled by the degree of detachment (DoD); (3) proportional feedback on edge temperature with security cut-off on the DoD. The DoD is defined for deuterium discharges, but not for helium since those do not detach. All three feedback modes permit operation close to the density limit and have been successfully applied for plasma currents 0.4 p p =1.4 MA with up to 4 MW of ICRH power. (author)

  18. Improving method of real-time offset tuning for arterial signal coordination using probe trajectory data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian Zhang

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available In the environment of intelligent transportation systems, traffic condition data would have higher resolution in time and space, which is especially valuable for managing the interrupted traffic at signalized intersections. There exist a lot of algorithms for offset tuning, but few of them take the advantage of modern traffic detection methods such as probe vehicle data. This study proposes a method using probe trajectory data to optimize and adjust offsets in real time. The critical point, representing the changing vehicle dynamics, is first defined as the basis of this approach. Using the critical points related to different states of traffic conditions, such as free flow, queue formation, and dissipation, various traffic status parameters can be estimated, including actual travel speed, queue dissipation rate, and standing queue length. The offset can then be adjusted on a cycle-by-cycle basis. The performance of this approach is evaluated using a simulation network. The results show that the trajectory-based approach can reduce travel time of the coordinated traffic flow when compared with using well-defined offline offset.

  19. IL-6 Improves Energy and Glucose Homeostasis in Obesity via Enhanced Central IL-6 trans-Signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timper, Katharina; Denson, Jesse Lee; Steculorum, Sophie Marie; Heilinger, Christian; Engström-Ruud, Linda; Wunderlich, Claudia Maria; Rose-John, Stefan; Wunderlich, F Thomas; Brüning, Jens Claus

    2017-04-11

    Interleukin (IL)-6 engages similar signaling mechanisms to leptin. Here, we find that central application of IL-6 in mice suppresses feeding and improves glucose tolerance. In contrast to leptin, whose action is attenuated in obesity, the ability of IL-6 to suppress feeding is enhanced in obese mice. IL-6 suppresses feeding in the absence of neuronal IL-6-receptor (IL-6R) expression in hypothalamic or all forebrain neurons of mice. Conversely, obese mice exhibit increased soluble IL-6R levels in the cerebrospinal fluid. Blocking IL-6 trans-signaling in the CNS abrogates the ability of IL-6 to suppress feeding. Furthermore, gp130 expression is enhanced in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVH) of obese mice, and deletion of gp130 in the PVH attenuates the beneficial central IL-6 effects on metabolism. Collectively, these experiments indicate that IL-6 trans-signaling is enhanced in the CNS of obese mice, allowing IL-6 to exert its beneficial metabolic effects even under conditions of leptin resistance. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. IL-6 Improves Energy and Glucose Homeostasis in Obesity via Enhanced Central IL-6 trans-Signaling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katharina Timper

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Interleukin (IL-6 engages similar signaling mechanisms to leptin. Here, we find that central application of IL-6 in mice suppresses feeding and improves glucose tolerance. In contrast to leptin, whose action is attenuated in obesity, the ability of IL-6 to suppress feeding is enhanced in obese mice. IL-6 suppresses feeding in the absence of neuronal IL-6-receptor (IL-6R expression in hypothalamic or all forebrain neurons of mice. Conversely, obese mice exhibit increased soluble IL-6R levels in the cerebrospinal fluid. Blocking IL-6 trans-signaling in the CNS abrogates the ability of IL-6 to suppress feeding. Furthermore, gp130 expression is enhanced in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVH of obese mice, and deletion of gp130 in the PVH attenuates the beneficial central IL-6 effects on metabolism. Collectively, these experiments indicate that IL-6 trans-signaling is enhanced in the CNS of obese mice, allowing IL-6 to exert its beneficial metabolic effects even under conditions of leptin resistance.

  1. Enhanced leptin sensitivity and improved glucose homeostasis in mice lacking suppressor of cytokine signaling-3 in POMC-expressing cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kievit, Paul; Howard, Jane K; Badman, Michael K; Balthasar, Nina; Coppari, Roberto; Mori, Hiroyuki; Lee, Charlotte E; Elmquist, Joel K; Yoshimura, Akihiko; Flier, Jeffrey S

    2006-08-01

    Suppressor of cytokine signaling-3 (Socs-3) negatively regulates the action of various cytokines, as well as the metabolic hormones leptin and insulin. Mice with haploinsufficiency of Socs-3, or those with neuronal deletion of Socs-3, are lean and more leptin and insulin sensitive. To examine the role of Socs-3 within specific neurons critical to energy balance, we created mice with selective deletion of Socs-3 within pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC)-expressing cells. These mice had enhanced leptin sensitivity, measured by weight loss and food intake after leptin infusion. On chow diet, glucose homeostasis was improved despite normal weight gain. On a high-fat diet, the rate of weight gain was reduced, due to increased energy expenditure rather than decreased food intake; glucose homeostasis and insulin sensitivity were substantially improved. These studies demonstrate that Socs-3 within POMC neurons regulates leptin sensitivity and glucose homeostasis, and plays a key role in linking high-fat diet to disordered metabolism.

  2. Improved Fuzzy Logic System to Evaluate Milk Electrical Conductivity Signals from On-Line Sensors to Monitor Dairy Goat Mastitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauro Zaninelli

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to develop and test a new fuzzy logic model for monitoring the udder health status (HS of goats. The model evaluated, as input variables, the milk electrical conductivity (EC signal, acquired on-line for each gland by a dedicated sensor, the bandwidth length and the frequency and amplitude of the first main peak of the Fourier frequency spectrum of the recorded milk EC signal. Two foremilk gland samples were collected from eight Saanen goats for six months at morning milking (lactation stages (LS: 0–60 Days In Milking (DIM; 61–120 DIM; 121–180 DIM, for a total of 5592 samples. Bacteriological analyses and somatic cell counts (SCC were used to define the HS of the glands. With negative bacteriological analyses and SCC < 1,000,000 cells/mL, glands were classified as healthy. When bacteriological analyses were positive or showed a SCC > 1,000,000 cells/mL, glands were classified as not healthy (NH. For each EC signal, an estimated EC value was calculated and a relative deviation was obtained. Furthermore, the Fourier frequency spectrum was evaluated and bandwidth length, frequency and amplitude of the first main peak were identified. Before using these indexes as input variables of the fuzzy logic model a linear mixed-effects model was developed to evaluate the acquired data considering the HS, LS and LS × HS as explanatory variables. Results showed that performance of a fuzzy logic model, in the monitoring of mammary gland HS, could be improved by the use of EC indexes derived from the Fourier frequency spectra of gland milk EC signals recorded by on-line EC sensors.

  3. Restoration of autophagy in endothelial cells from patients with diabetes mellitus improves nitric oxide signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fetterman, Jessica L; Holbrook, Monica; Flint, Nir; Feng, Bihua; Bretón-Romero, Rosa; Linder, Erika A; Berk, Brittany D; Duess, Mai-Ann; Farb, Melissa G; Gokce, Noyan; Shirihai, Orian S; Hamburg, Naomi M; Vita, Joseph A

    2016-04-01

    Endothelial dysfunction contributes to cardiovascular disease in diabetes mellitus. Autophagy is a multistep mechanism for the removal of damaged proteins and organelles from the cell. Under diabetic conditions, inadequate autophagy promotes cellular dysfunction and insulin resistance in non-vascular tissue. We hypothesized that impaired autophagy contributes to endothelial dysfunction in diabetes mellitus. We measured autophagy markers and endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) activation in freshly isolated endothelial cells from diabetic subjects (n = 45) and non-diabetic controls (n = 41). p62 levels were higher in cells from diabetics (34.2 ± 3.6 vs. 20.0 ± 1.6, P = 0.001), indicating reduced autophagic flux. Bafilomycin inhibited insulin-induced activation of eNOS (64.7 ± 22% to -47.8 ± 8%, P = 0.04) in cells from controls, confirming that intact autophagy is necessary for eNOS signaling. In endothelial cells from diabetics, activation of autophagy with spermidine restored eNOS activation, suggesting that impaired autophagy contributes to endothelial dysfunction (P = 0.01). Indicators of autophagy initiation including the number of LC3-bound puncta and beclin 1 expression were similar in diabetics and controls, whereas an autophagy terminal phase indicator, the lysosomal protein Lamp2a, was higher in diabetics. In endothelial cells under diabetic conditions, the beneficial effect of spermidine on eNOS activation was blocked by autophagy inhibitors bafilomycin or 3-methyladenine. Blocking the terminal stage of autophagy with bafilomycin increased p62 (P = 0.01) in cells from diabetics to a lesser extent than in cells from controls (P = 0.04), suggesting ongoing, but inadequate autophagic clearance. Inadequate autophagy contributes to endothelial dysfunction in patients with diabetes and may be a target for therapy of diabetic vascular disease. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Ginsenoside Rh2 Improves Cardiac Fibrosis via PPARδ–STAT3 Signaling in Type 1-Like Diabetic Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shih-Hsiang Lo

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Ginsenoside Rh2 (Rh2 is an active principal ingredient contained in ginseng (Panax ginseng Meyer, a medicinal herb used to enhance health worldwide. The present study is designed to investigate the effect of Rh2 on myocardial fibrosis in diabetic rats. In a streptozotocin-induced model of type-1 diabetic rats (STZ-diabetic rats, the increased fasting blood glucose levels and heart weight/body weight (HW/BW ratio were substantially alleviated by Rh2. Moreover, Rh2 improved cardiac performance in STZ-diabetic rats. Histological results from Masson staining showed that Rh2 attenuated cardiac fibrosis in STZ-diabetic rats. The effects of Rh2 were reversed by GSK0660 at a dose sufficient to inhibit peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor δ (PPARδ in STZ-diabetic rats. The role of PPARδ was subsequently investigated in vitro. Rh2 restored the decreased PPARδ expression level in high glucose-cultured cardiomyocytes. Moreover, increased protein levels of fibrotic signals, including signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3, connective tissue growth factor (CCN2 and fibronectin, were reduced by Rh2 in high glucose-cultured cardiomyocytes. These effects of Rh2 were reversed by GSK0660 or siRNA specific for PPARδ Taken together, PPARδ activation may inhibit STAT3 activation to reduce CCN2 and fibronectin expression in diabetic rats with cardiac fibrosis. Moreover, Rh2 improves cardiac function and fibrosis by increasing PPARδ signaling. Therefore, Rh2 is suitable to develop as an alternative remedy for cardiac fibrosis.

  5. Solid-State NMR on bacterial cells: selective cell wall signal enhancement and resolution improvement using dynamic nuclear polarization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Takahashi, Hiroki; Bardet, Michel; De Paepe, Gael; Hediger, Sabine; Ayala, Isabel; Simorre, Jean-Pierre

    2013-01-01

    Dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) enhanced solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) has recently emerged as a powerful technique for the study of material surfaces. In this study, we demonstrate its potential to investigate cell surface in intact cells. Using Bacillus subtilis bacterial cells as an example, it is shown that the polarizing agent 1-(TEMPO-4-oxy)-3-(TEMPO-4-amino)propan-2-ol (TOTAPOL) has a strong binding affinity to cell wall polymers (peptidoglycan). This particular interaction is thoroughly investigated with a systematic study on extracted cell wall materials, disrupted cells, and entire cells, which proved that TOTAPOL is mainly accumulating in the cell wall. This property is used on one hand to selectively enhance or suppress cell wall signals by controlling radical concentrations and on the other hand to improve spectral resolution by means of a difference spectrum. Comparing DNP-enhanced and conventional solid-state NMR, an absolute sensitivity ratio of 24 was obtained on the entire cell sample. This important increase in sensitivity together with the possibility of enhancing specifically cell wall signals and improving resolution really opens new avenues for the use of DNP-enhanced solid-state NMR as an on-cell investigation tool. (authors)

  6. Solid-state NMR on bacterial cells: selective cell wall signal enhancement and resolution improvement using dynamic nuclear polarization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, Hiroki; Ayala, Isabel; Bardet, Michel; De Paëpe, Gaël; Simorre, Jean-Pierre; Hediger, Sabine

    2013-04-03

    Dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) enhanced solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) has recently emerged as a powerful technique for the study of material surfaces. In this study, we demonstrate its potential to investigate cell surface in intact cells. Using Bacillus subtilis bacterial cells as an example, it is shown that the polarizing agent 1-(TEMPO-4-oxy)-3-(TEMPO-4-amino)propan-2-ol (TOTAPOL) has a strong binding affinity to cell wall polymers (peptidoglycan). This particular interaction is thoroughly investigated with a systematic study on extracted cell wall materials, disrupted cells, and entire cells, which proved that TOTAPOL is mainly accumulating in the cell wall. This property is used on one hand to selectively enhance or suppress cell wall signals by controlling radical concentrations and on the other hand to improve spectral resolution by means of a difference spectrum. Comparing DNP-enhanced and conventional solid-state NMR, an absolute sensitivity ratio of 24 was obtained on the entire cell sample. This important increase in sensitivity together with the possibility of enhancing specifically cell wall signals and improving resolution really opens new avenues for the use of DNP-enhanced solid-state NMR as an on-cell investigation tool.

  7. Improving the arterial input function in dynamic contrast enhanced MRI by fitting the signal in the complex plane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonis, Frank F J; Sbrizzi, Alessandro; Beld, Ellis; Lagendijk, Jan J W; van den Berg, Cornelis A T

    2016-10-01

    Dynamic contrast enhanced (DCE) imaging is a widely used technique in oncologic imaging. An essential prerequisite for obtaining quantitative values from DCE-MRI is the determination of the arterial input function (AIF). However, it is very challenging to accurately estimate the AIF using MR. A comprehensive model, which uses complex data instead of either magnitude or phase, was developed to improve AIF estimation. The model was first applied to simulated data. Subsequently, the accuracy of the estimated contrast agent concentration was validated in a phantom. Finally the method was applied to existing DCE scans of 13 prostate cancer patients. The complex signal method combines the complementary strengths of the magnitude and phase method, increasing the precision and accuracy of concentration estimation in simulated and phantom data. The in vivo AIFs show a good agreement between arterial voxels (standard deviation in the peak and tail equal 0.4 mM and 0.12 mM, respectively). Furthermore, the dynamic behavior closely followed the AIF obtained with DCE-CT in the same patients (mean correlation coefficient: 0.92). By using the complex signal, the AIF estimation becomes more accurate and precise. This might enable patient specific AIFs, thereby improving the quantitative values obtained from DCE-MRI. Magn Reson Med 76:1236-1245, 2016. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Improvement of the GERDA Ge Detectors Energy Resolution by an Optimized Digital Signal Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benato, G.; D'Andrea, V.; Cattadori, C.; Riboldi, S.

    GERDA is a new generation experiment searching for neutrinoless double beta decay of 76Ge, operating at INFN Gran Sasso Laboratories (LNGS) since 2010. Coaxial and Broad Energy Germanium (BEGe) Detectors have been operated in liquid argon (LAr) in GERDA Phase I. In the framework of the second GERDA experimental phase, both the contacting technique, the connection to and the location of the front end readout devices are novel compared to those previously adopted, and several tests have been performed. In this work, starting from considerations on the energy scale stability of the GERDA Phase I calibrations and physics data sets, an optimized pulse filtering method has been developed and applied to the Phase II pilot tests data sets, and to few GERDA Phase I data sets. In this contribution the detector performances in term of energy resolution and time stability are here presented. The improvement of the energy resolution, compared to standard Gaussian shaping adopted for Phase I data analysis, is discussed and related to the optimized noise filtering capability. The result is an energy resolution better than 0.1% at 2.6 MeV for the BEGe detectors operated in the Phase II pilot tests and an improvement of the energy resolution in LAr of about 8% achieved on the GERDA Phase I calibration runs, compared to previous analysis algorithms.

  9. Insights into significance of combined inhibition of MEK and m-TOR signalling output in KRAS mutant non-small-cell lung cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broutin, Sophie; Stewart, Adam; Thavasu, Parames; Paci, Angelo; Bidart, Jean-Michel; Banerji, Udai

    2016-08-23

    We aimed to understand the dependence of MEK and m-TOR inhibition in EGFR(WT)/ALK(non-rearranged) NSCLC cell lines. In a panel of KRAS(M) and KRAS(WT) NSCLC cell lines, we determined growth inhibition (GI) following maximal reduction in p-ERK and p-S6RP caused by trametinib (MEK inhibitor) and AZD2014 (m-TOR inhibitor), respectively. GI caused by maximal m-TOR inhibition was significantly greater than GI caused by maximal MEK inhibition in the cell line panel (52% vs 18%, PTOR compared with maximal m-TOR+MEK inhibition. However, GI caused by the combination was significantly greater in the KRAS(M) cell lines (79% vs 61%, P=0.017). m-TOR inhibition was more critical to GI than MEK inhibition in EGFR(WT)/ALK(non-rearranged) NSCLC cells. The combination of MEK and m-TOR inhibition was most effective in KRAS(M) cells.

  10. Five-year results from a prospective multicentre study of percutaneous pulmonary valve implantation demonstrate sustained removal of significant pulmonary regurgitation, improved right ventricular outflow tract obstruction and improved quality of life

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hager, Alfred; Schubert, Stephan; Ewert, Peter

    2017-01-01

    . The EQ-5D quality of life utility index and visual analogue scale scores were both significantly improved six months post PPVI and remained so at five years. CONCLUSIONS: Five-year results following PPVI demonstrate resolved moderate or severe pulmonary regurgitation, improved right ventricular outflow...

  11. Performance studies of GooFit on GPUs vs RooFit on CPUs while estimating the statistical significance of a new physical signal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Florio, Adriano

    2017-10-01

    In order to test the computing capabilities of GPUs with respect to traditional CPU cores a high-statistics toy Monte Carlo technique has been implemented both in ROOT/RooFit and GooFit frameworks with the purpose to estimate the statistical significance of the structure observed by CMS close to the kinematical boundary of the J/ψϕ invariant mass in the three-body decay B + → J/ψϕK +. GooFit is a data analysis open tool under development that interfaces ROOT/RooFit to CUDA platform on nVidia GPU. The optimized GooFit application running on GPUs hosted by servers in the Bari Tier2 provides striking speed-up performances with respect to the RooFit application parallelised on multiple CPUs by means of PROOF-Lite tool. The considerable resulting speed-up, evident when comparing concurrent GooFit processes allowed by CUDA Multi Process Service and a RooFit/PROOF-Lite process with multiple CPU workers, is presented and discussed in detail. By means of GooFit it has also been possible to explore the behaviour of a likelihood ratio test statistic in different situations in which the Wilks Theorem may or may not apply because its regularity conditions are not satisfied.

  12. Network Signaling Channel for Improving ZigBee Performance in Dynamic Cluster-Tree Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Hämäläinen

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available ZigBee is one of the most potential standardized technologies for wireless sensor networks (WSNs. Yet, sufficient energy-efficiency for the lowest power WSNs is achieved only in rather static networks. This severely limits the applicability of ZigBee in outdoor and mobile applications, where operation environment is harsh and link failures are common. This paper proposes a network channel beaconing (NCB algorithm for improving ZigBee performance in dynamic cluster-tree networks. NCB reduces the energy consumption of passive scans by dedicating one frequency channel for network beacon transmissions and by energy optimizing their transmission rate. According to an energy analysis, the power consumption of network maintenance operations reduces by 70%–76% in dynamic networks. In static networks, energy overhead is negligible. Moreover, the service time for data routing increases up to 37%. The performance of NCB is validated by ns-2 simulations. NCB can be implemented as an extension on MAC and NWK layers and it is fully compatible with ZigBee.

  13. High-Frequency Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS Improves Functional Recovery by Enhancing Neurogenesis and Activating BDNF/TrkB Signaling in Ischemic Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jing Luo

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS has rapidly become an attractive therapeutic approach for stroke. However, the mechanisms underlying this remain elusive. This study aimed to investigate whether high-frequency rTMS improves functional recovery mediated by enhanced neurogenesis and activation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF/tropomyosin-related kinase B (TrkB pathway and to compare the effect of conventional 20 Hz rTMS and intermittent theta burst stimulation (iTBS on ischemic rats. Rats after rTMS were sacrificed seven and 14 days after middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO, following evaluation of neurological function. Neurogenesis was measured using specific markers: Ki67, Nestin, doublecortin (DCX, NeuN and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP, and the expression levels of BDNF were visualized by Western blotting and RT-PCR analysis. Both high-frequency rTMS methods significantly improved neurological function and reduced infarct volume. Moreover, 20 Hz rTMS and iTBS significantly promoted neurogenesis, shown by an increase of Ki67/DCX, Ki67/Nestin, and Ki67/NeuN-positive cells in the peri-infarct striatum. These beneficial effects were accompanied by elevated protein levels of BDNF and phosphorylated-TrkB. In conclusion, high-frequency rTMS improves functional recovery possibly by enhancing neurogenesis and activating BDNF/TrkB signaling pathway and conventional 20 Hz rTMS is better than iTBS at enhancing neurogenesis in ischemic rats.

  14. Evidence towards improved estimation of respiratory muscle effort from diaphragm mechanomyographic signals with cardiac vibration interference using sample entropy with fixed tolerance values.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonardo Sarlabous

    Full Text Available The analysis of amplitude parameters of the diaphragm mechanomyographic (MMGdi signal is a non-invasive technique to assess respiratory muscle effort and to detect and quantify the severity of respiratory muscle weakness. The amplitude of the MMGdi signal is usually evaluated using the average rectified value or the root mean square of the signal. However, these estimations are greatly affected by the presence of cardiac vibration or mechanocardiographic (MCG noise. In this study, we present a method for improving the estimation of the respiratory muscle effort from MMGdi signals that is robust to the presence of MCG. This method is based on the calculation of the sample entropy using fixed tolerance values (fSampEn, that is, with tolerance values that are not normalized by the local standard deviation of the window analyzed. The behavior of the fSampEn parameter was tested in synthesized mechanomyographic signals, with different ratios between the amplitude of the MCG and clean mechanomyographic components. As an example of application of this technique, the use of fSampEn was explored also in recorded MMGdi signals, with different inspiratory loads. The results with both synthetic and recorded signals indicate that the entropy parameter is less affected by the MCG noise, especially at low signal-to-noise ratios. Therefore, we believe that the proposed fSampEn parameter could improve estimates of respiratory muscle effort from MMGdi signals with the presence of MCG interference.

  15. Addition of 2-(ethylamino)acetonitrile group to nitroxoline results in significantly improved anti-tumor activity in vitro and in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitrović, Ana; Sosič, Izidor; Kos, Špela; Tratar, Urša Lampreht; Breznik, Barbara; Kranjc, Simona; Mirković, Bojana; Gobec, Stanislav; Lah, Tamara; Serša, Gregor; Kos, Janko

    2017-08-29

    Lysosomal cysteine peptidase cathepsin B, involved in multiple processes associated with tumor progression, is validated as a target for anti-cancer therapy. Nitroxoline, a known antimicrobial agent, is a potent and selective inhibitor of cathepsin B, hence reducing tumor progression in vitro and in vivo . In order to further improve its anti-cancer properties we developed a number of derivatives using structure-based chemical synthesis. Of these, the 7-aminomethylated derivative (compound 17 ) exhibited significantly improved kinetic properties over nitroxoline, inhibiting cathepsin B endopeptidase activity selectively. In the present study, we have evaluated its anti-cancer properties. It was more effective than nitroxoline in reducing tumor cell invasion and migration, as determined in vitro on two-dimensional cell models and tumor spheroids, under either endpoint or real time conditions. Moreover, it exhibited improved action over nitroxoline in impairing tumor growth in vivo in LPB mouse fibrosarcoma tumors in C57Bl/6 mice. Taken together, the addition of a 2-(ethylamino)acetonitrile group to nitroxoline at position 7 significantly improves its pharmacological characteristics and its potential for use as an anti-cancer drug.

  16. Improving Signal-to-Noise Ratio in Susceptibility Weighted Imaging: A Novel Multicomponent Non-Local Approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pasquale Borrelli

    Full Text Available In susceptibility-weighted imaging (SWI, the high resolution required to obtain a proper contrast generation leads to a reduced signal-to-noise ratio (SNR. The application of a denoising filter to produce images with higher SNR and still preserve small structures from excessive blurring is therefore extremely desirable. However, as the distributions of magnitude and phase noise may introduce biases during image restoration, the application of a denoising filter is non-trivial. Taking advantage of the potential multispectral nature of MR images, a multicomponent approach using a Non-Local Means (MNLM denoising filter may perform better than a component-by-component image restoration method. Here we present a new MNLM-based method (Multicomponent-Imaginary-Real-SWI, hereafter MIR-SWI to produce SWI images with high SNR and improved conspicuity. Both qualitative and quantitative comparisons of MIR-SWI with the original SWI scheme and previously proposed SWI restoring pipelines showed that MIR-SWI fared consistently better than the other approaches. Noise removal with MIR-SWI also provided improvement in contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR and vessel conspicuity at higher factors of phase mask multiplications than the one suggested in the literature for SWI vessel imaging. We conclude that a proper handling of noise in the complex MR dataset may lead to improved image quality for SWI data.

  17. Electroacupuncture Improved Hippocampal Neurogenesis following Traumatic Brain Injury in Mice through Inhibition of TLR4 Signaling Pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuqin Ye

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The protective role of electroacupuncture (EA treatment in diverse neurological diseases such as ischemic stroke is well acknowledged. However, whether and how EA act on hippocampal neurogenesis following traumatic brain injury (TBI remains poorly understood. This study aims to investigate the effect of EA on hippocampal neurogenesis and neurological functions, as well as its underlying association with toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4 signaling in TBI mice. BrdU/NeuN immunofluorescence was performed to label newborn neurons in the hippocampus after EA treatment. Water maze test and neurological severity score were used to evaluate neurological function posttrauma. The hippocampal level of TLR4 and downstream molecules and inflammatory cytokines were, respectively, detected by Western blot and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. EA enhanced hippocampal neurogenesis and inhibited TLR4 expression at 21, 28, and 35 days after TBI, but the beneficial effects of EA on posttraumatic neurogenesis and neurological functions were attenuated by lipopolysaccharide-induced TLR4 activation. In addition, EA exerted an inhibitory effect on both TLR4/Myd88/NF-κB and TLR4/TRIF/NF-κB pathways, as well as the inflammatory cytokine expression in the hippocampus following TBI. In conclusion, EA promoted hippocampal neurogenesis and neurological recovery through inhibition of TLR4 signaling pathway posttrauma, which may be a potential approach to improve the outcome of TBI.

  18. Ablation of neurons expressing melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) in adult mice improves glucose tolerance independent of MCH signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whiddon, Benjamin B; Palmiter, Richard D

    2013-01-30

    Melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH)-expressing neurons have been ascribed many roles based on studies of MCH-deficient mice. However, MCH neurons express other neurotransmitters, including GABA, nesfatin, and cocaine-amphetamine-regulated transcript. The importance of these other signaling molecules made by MCH neurons remains incompletely characterized. To determine the roles of MCH neurons in vivo, we targeted expression of the human diphtheria toxin receptor (DTR) to the gene for MCH (Pmch). Within 2 weeks of diphtheria toxin injection, heterozygous Pmch(DTR/+) mice lost 98% of their MCH neurons. These mice became lean but ate normally and were hyperactive, especially during a fast. They also responded abnormally to psychostimulants. For these phenotypes, ablation of MCH neurons recapitulated knock-out of MCH, so MCH appears to be the critical neuromodulator released by these neurons. In contrast, MCH-neuron-ablated mice showed improved glucose tolerance when compared with MCH-deficient mutant mice and wild-type mice. We conclude that MCH neurons regulate glucose tolerance through signaling molecules other than MCH.

  19. Co-overexpressing a Plasma Membrane and a Vacuolar Membrane Sodium/Proton Antiporter Significantly Improves Salt Tolerance in Transgenic Arabidopsis Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pehlivan, Necla; Sun, Li; Jarrett, Philip; Yang, Xiaojie; Mishra, Neelam; Chen, Lin; Kadioglu, Asim; Shen, Guoxin; Zhang, Hong

    2016-01-01

    The Arabidopsis gene AtNHX1 encodes a vacuolar membrane-bound sodium/proton (Na+/H+) antiporter that transports Na+ into the vacuole and exports H+ into the cytoplasm. The Arabidopsis gene SOS1 encodes a plasma membrane-bound Na+/H+ antiporter that exports Na+ to the extracellular space and imports H+ into the plant cell. Plants rely on these enzymes either to keep Na+ out of the cell or to sequester Na+ into vacuoles to avoid the toxic level of Na+ in the cytoplasm. Overexpression of AtNHX1 or SOS1 could improve salt tolerance in transgenic plants, but the improved salt tolerance is limited. NaCl at concentration >200 mM would kill AtNHX1-overexpressing or SOS1-overexpressing plants. Here it is shown that co-overexpressing AtNHX1 and SOS1 could further improve salt tolerance in transgenic Arabidopsis plants, making transgenic Arabidopsis able to tolerate up to 250 mM NaCl treatment. Furthermore, co-overexpression of AtNHX1 and SOS1 could significantly reduce yield loss caused by the combined stresses of heat and salt, confirming the hypothesis that stacked overexpression of two genes could substantially improve tolerance against multiple stresses. This research serves as a proof of concept for improving salt tolerance in other plants including crops. PMID:26985021

  20. Co-overexpressing a Plasma Membrane and a Vacuolar Membrane Sodium/Proton Antiporter Significantly Improves Salt Tolerance in Transgenic Arabidopsis Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pehlivan, Necla; Sun, Li; Jarrett, Philip; Yang, Xiaojie; Mishra, Neelam; Chen, Lin; Kadioglu, Asim; Shen, Guoxin; Zhang, Hong

    2016-05-01

    The Arabidopsis gene AtNHX1 encodes a vacuolar membrane-bound sodium/proton (Na(+)/H(+)) antiporter that transports Na(+) into the vacuole and exports H(+) into the cytoplasm. The Arabidopsis gene SOS1 encodes a plasma membrane-bound Na(+)/H(+) antiporter that exports Na(+) to the extracellular space and imports H(+) into the plant cell. Plants rely on these enzymes either to keep Na(+) out of the cell or to sequester Na(+) into vacuoles to avoid the toxic level of Na(+) in the cytoplasm. Overexpression of AtNHX1 or SOS1 could improve salt tolerance in transgenic plants, but the improved salt tolerance is limited. NaCl at concentration >200 mM would kill AtNHX1-overexpressing or SOS1-overexpressing plants. Here it is shown that co-overexpressing AtNHX1 and SOS1 could further improve salt tolerance in transgenic Arabidopsis plants, making transgenic Arabidopsis able to tolerate up to 250 mM NaCl treatment. Furthermore, co-overexpression of AtNHX1 and SOS1 could significantly reduce yield loss caused by the combined stresses of heat and salt, confirming the hypothesis that stacked overexpression of two genes could substantially improve tolerance against multiple stresses. This research serves as a proof of concept for improving salt tolerance in other plants including crops. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists.

  1. Wogonin improves histological and functional outcomes, and reduces activation of TLR4/NF-κB signaling after experimental traumatic brain injury.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chien-Cheng Chen

    Full Text Available Traumatic brain injury (TBI initiates a neuroinflammatory cascade that contributes to neuronal damage and behavioral impairment. This study was undertaken to investigate the effects of wogonin, a flavonoid with potent anti-inflammatory properties, on functional and histological outcomes, brain edema, and toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4- and nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB-related signaling pathways in mice following TBI.Mice subjected to controlled cortical impact injury were injected with wogonin (20, 40, or 50 mg·kg(-1 or vehicle 10 min after injury. Behavioral studies, histology analysis, and measurement of blood-brain barrier (BBB permeability and brain water content were carried out to assess the effects of wogonin. Levels of TLR4/NF-κB-related inflammatory mediators were also examined. Treatment with 40 mg·kg(-1 wogonin significantly improved functional recovery and reduced contusion volumes up to post-injury day 28. Wogonin also significantly reduced neuronal death, BBB permeability, and brain edema beginning at day 1. These changes were associated with a marked reduction in leukocyte infiltration, microglial activation, TLR4 expression, NF-κB translocation to nucleus and its DNA binding activity, matrix metalloproteinase-9 activity, and expression of inflammatory mediators, including interleukin-1β, interleukin-6, macrophage inflammatory protein-2, and cyclooxygenase-2.Our results show that post-injury wogonin treatment improved long-term functional and histological outcomes, reduced brain edema, and attenuated the TLR4/NF-κB-mediated inflammatory response in mouse TBI. The neuroprotective effects of wogonin may be related to modulation of the TLR4/NF-κB signaling pathway.

  2. SH2 modified STAT1 induces HLA-I expression and improves IFN-γ signaling in IFN-α resistant HCV replicon cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bret Poat

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available We have developed multiple stable cell lines containing subgenomic HCV RNA that are resistant to treatment with interferon alpha (IFN-α. Characterization of these IFN-α resistant replicon cells showed defects in the phosphorylation and nuclear translocation of STAT1 and STAT2 proteins due to a defective Jak-STAT pathway.In this study, we have developed an alternative strategy to overcome interferon resistance in a cell culture model by improving intracellular STAT1 signaling. An engineered STAT1-CC molecule with double cysteine substitutions in the Src-homology 2 (SH2 domains of STAT1 (at Ala-656 and Asn-658 efficiently phosphorylates and translocates to the nucleus of IFN-resistant cells in an IFN-γ dependent manner. Transfection of a plasmid clone containing STAT1-CC significantly activated the GAS promoter compared to wild type STAT1 and STAT3. The activity of the engineered STAT1-CC is dependent upon the phosphorylation of tyrosine residue 701, since the construct with a substituted phenylalanine residue at position 701 (STAT1-CC-Y701F failed to activate GAS promoter in the replicon cells. Intracellular expression of STAT1-CC protein showed phosphorylation and nuclear translocation in the resistant cell line after IFN-γ treatment. Transient transfection of STAT1-CC plasmid clone into an interferon resistant cell line resulted in inhibition of viral replication and viral clearance in an IFN-γ dependent manner. Furthermore, the resistant replicon cells transfected with STAT1-CC constructs significantly up regulated surface HLA-1 expression when compared to the wild type and Y to F mutant controls.These results suggest that modification of the SH2 domain of the STAT1 molecule allows for improved IFN-γ signaling through increased STAT1 phosphorylation, nuclear translocation, HLA-1 surface expression, and prolonged interferon antiviral gene activation.

  3. Vitamin D and Calcium Addition during Denosumab Therapy over a Period of Four Years Significantly Improves Lumbar Bone Mineral Density in Japanese Osteoporosis Patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takako Suzuki

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated whether or not vitamin D and calcium supplementation affected bone metabolism and bone mineral density (BMD over a period of four years of denosumab therapy in patients with primary osteoporosis. Patients were divided into a denosumab monotherapy group (22 cases or a denosumab plus vitamin D and calcium supplementation group (combination group, 21 cases. We measured serum bone alkaline phosphatase (BAP, tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRACP-5b, urinary N-terminal telopeptide of type-I collagen (NTX, and BMD of the lumbar 1–4 vertebrae (L-BMD and bilateral hips (H-BMD at baseline and at 12, 24, 36, and 48 months of treatment. There were no significant differences in patient background. Serum BAP, TRACP-5b, and urinary NTX were significantly and comparably inhibited in both groups from 12 to 48 months versus baseline values. L-BMD was significantly increased at every time point in both groups, while H-BMD was significantly increased at every time point in the combination group only. There were significant differences between the groups for L-BMD at 24, 36, and 48 months (P < 0.05 and for H-BMD at 12 months (P < 0.05. Compared with denosumab monotherapy, combination therapy of denosumab plus vitamin D and calcium significantly increased H-BMD at 12 months and L-BMD from 24 to 48 months. These findings indicate that continuous vitamin D and calcium supplementation is important, especially for 12 months to improve H-BMD and from 24 to 48 months to improve L-BMD.

  4. Significant improvement of olfactory performance in sleep apnea patients after three months of nasal CPAP therapy - Observational study and randomized trial.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bettina Boerner

    Full Text Available The olfactory function highly impacts quality of life (QoL. Continuous positive airway pressure is an effective treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA and is often applied by nasal masks (nCPAP. The influence of nCPAP on the olfactory performance of OSA patients is unknown. The aim of this study was to assess the sense of smell before initiation of nCPAP and after three months treatment, in moderate and severe OSA patients.The sense of smell was assessed in 35 patients suffering from daytime sleepiness and moderate to severe OSA (apnea/hypopnea index ≥ 15/h, with the aid of a validated test battery (Sniffin' Sticks before initiation of nCPAP therapy and after three months of treatment. Additionally, adherent subjects were included in a double-blind randomized three weeks CPAP-withdrawal trial (sub-therapeutic CPAP pressure.Twenty five of the 35 patients used the nCPAP therapy for more than four hours per night, and for more than 70% of nights (adherent group. The olfactory performance of these patients improved significantly (p = 0.007 after three months of nCPAP therapy. When considering the entire group of patients, olfaction also improved significantly (p = 0.001. In the randomized phase the sense of smell of six patients deteriorated under sub-therapeutic CPAP pressure (p = 0.046 whereas five patients in the maintenance CPAP group showed no significant difference (p = 0.501.Olfactory performance improved significantly after three months of nCPAP therapy in patients suffering from moderate and severe OSA. It seems that this effect of nCPAP is reversible under sub-therapeutic CPAP pressure.ISRCTN11128866.

  5. Effects of a community scorecard on improving the local health system in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo: qualitative evidence using the most significant change technique.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, Lara S; Labrecque, Guillaume; Batonon, Isatou; Salsi, Viviana; Ratnayake, Ruwan

    2015-01-01

    More than a decade of conflict has weakened the health system in the Democratic Republic of Congo and decreased its ability to respond to the needs of the population. Community scorecards have been conceived as a way to increase accountability and responsiveness of service providers, but there is limited evidence of their effects, particularly in fragile and conflict-affected contexts. This paper describes the implementation of community scorecards within a community-driven reconstruction project in two provinces of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Between June 2012 and November 2013, 45 stories of change in the health system were collected from village development committee, health committee, community members (20 men and 18 women) and healthcare providers (n = 7) in 25 sites using the Most Significant Change technique. Stories were analyzed qualitatively for content related to the types and mechanisms of change observed. The most salient changes were related to increased transparency and community participation in health facility management, and improved quality of care. Quality of care included increased access to services, improved patient-provider relationships, improved performance of service providers, and improved maintenance of physical infrastructure. Changes occurred through many different mechanisms including provider actions in response to information, pressure from community representatives, or supervisors; and joint action and improved collaboration by health facility committees and providers. Although it is often assumed that confrontation is a primary mechanism for citizens to change state-provided services, this study demonstrates that healthcare providers may also be motivated to change through other means. Positive experiences of community scorecards can provide a structured space for interface between community members and the health system, allowing users to voice their opinions and preferences and bridge information gaps for both

  6. MR imaging of the knee: Improvement of signal and contrast efficiency of T1-weighted turbo spin echo sequences by applying a driven equilibrium (DRIVE) pulse

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Radlbauer, Rudolf, E-mail: rudolf.radlbauer@stpoelten.lknoe.a [MR Physics Group, Department of Radiology, Landesklinikum St. Poelten, Propst Fuehrer Strasse 4, 3100 St. Poelten (Austria); Lomoschitz, Friedrich, E-mail: friedrich.lomoschitz@stpoelten.lknoe.a [MR Physics Group, Department of Radiology, Landesklinikum St. Poelten, Propst Fuehrer Strasse 4, 3100 St. Poelten (Austria); Salomonowitz, Erich, E-mail: erich.salomonowitz@stpoelten.lknoe.a [MR Physics Group, Department of Radiology, Landesklinikum St. Poelten, Propst Fuehrer Strasse 4, 3100 St. Poelten (Austria); Eberhardt, Knut E., E-mail: info@mrt-kompetenzzentrum.d [MRT Competence Center Schloss Werneck, Balthasar-Neumann-Platz 2, 97440 Werneck (Germany); Stadlbauer, Andreas, E-mail: andi@nmr.a [MR Physics Group, Department of Radiology, Landesklinikum St. Poelten, Propst Fuehrer Strasse 4, 3100 St. Poelten (Austria); Department of Neurosurgery, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Schwabachanlage 6, 91054 Erlangen (Germany)

    2010-08-15

    The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of a driven equilibrium (DRIVE) pulse incorporated in a standard T1-weighted turbo spin echo (TSE) sequence as used in our routine MRI protocol for examination of pathologies of the knee. Sixteen consecutive patients with knee disorders were examined using the routine MRI protocol, including T1-weighted TSE-sequences with and without a DRIVE pulse. Signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs) and contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR) of anatomical structures and pathologies were calculated and compared for both sequences. The differences in diagnostic value of the T1-weighted images with and without DRIVE pulse were assessed. SNR was significantly higher on images acquired with DRIVE pulse for fluid, effusion, cartilage and bone. Differences in the SNR of meniscus and muscle between the two sequences were not statistically significant. CNR was significantly increased between muscle and effusion, fluid and cartilage, fluid and meniscus, cartilage and meniscus, bone and cartilage on images acquired using the DRIVE pulse. Diagnostic value of the T1-weighted images was found to be improved for delineation of anatomic structures and for diagnosing a variety of pathologies when a DRIVE pulse is incorporated in the sequence. Incorporation of a DRIVE pulse into a standard T1-weighted TSE-sequence leads to significant increase of SNR and CNR of both, anatomical structures and pathologies, and consequently to an increase in diagnostic value within the same acquisition time.

  7. MR imaging of the knee: Improvement of signal and contrast efficiency of T1-weighted turbo spin echo sequences by applying a driven equilibrium (DRIVE) pulse

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radlbauer, Rudolf; Lomoschitz, Friedrich; Salomonowitz, Erich; Eberhardt, Knut E.; Stadlbauer, Andreas

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of a driven equilibrium (DRIVE) pulse incorporated in a standard T1-weighted turbo spin echo (TSE) sequence as used in our routine MRI protocol for examination of pathologies of the knee. Sixteen consecutive patients with knee disorders were examined using the routine MRI protocol, including T1-weighted TSE-sequences with and without a DRIVE pulse. Signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs) and contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR) of anatomical structures and pathologies were calculated and compared for both sequences. The differences in diagnostic value of the T1-weighted images with and without DRIVE pulse were assessed. SNR was significantly higher on images acquired with DRIVE pulse for fluid, effusion, cartilage and bone. Differences in the SNR of meniscus and muscle between the two sequences were not statistically significant. CNR was significantly increased between muscle and effusion, fluid and cartilage, fluid and meniscus, cartilage and meniscus, bone and cartilage on images acquired using the DRIVE pulse. Diagnostic value of the T1-weighted images was found to be improved for delineation of anatomic structures and for diagnosing a variety of pathologies when a DRIVE pulse is incorporated in the sequence. Incorporation of a DRIVE pulse into a standard T1-weighted TSE-sequence leads to significant increase of SNR and CNR of both, anatomical structures and pathologies, and consequently to an increase in diagnostic value within the same acquisition time.

  8. Curcumin Improves Amyloid β-Peptide (1-42 Induced Spatial Memory Deficits through BDNF-ERK Signaling Pathway.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lu Zhang

    Full Text Available Curcumin, the most active component of turmeric, has various beneficial properties, such as antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antitumor effects. Previous studies have suggested that curcumin reduces the levels of amyloid and oxidized proteins and prevents memory deficits and thus is beneficial to patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying curcumin's effect on cognitive functions are not well-understood. In the present study, we examined the working memory and spatial reference memory in rats that received a ventricular injection of amyloid-β1-42 (Aβ1-42, representing a rodent model of Alzheimer's disease (AD. The rats treated with Aβ1-42 exhibited obvious cognitive deficits in behavioral tasks. Chronic (seven consecutive days, once per day but not acute (once a day curcumin treatments (50, 100, and 200 mg/kg improved the cognitive functions in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, the beneficial effect of curcumin is accompanied by increased BDNF levels and elevated levels of phosphorylated ERK in the hippocampus. Furthermore, the cognition enhancement effect of curcumin could be mimicked by the overexpression of BDNF in the hippocampus and blocked by either bilateral hippocampal injections with lentiviruses that express BDNF shRNA or a microinjection of ERK inhibitor. These findings suggest that chronic curcumin ameliorates AD-related cognitive deficits and that upregulated BDNF-ERK signaling in the hippocampus may underlie the cognitive improvement produced by curcumin.

  9. α-Lactose Improves the Survival of Septic Mice by Blockade of TIM-3 Signaling to Prevent NKT Cell Apoptosis and Attenuate Cytokine Storm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Yao; Deng, Hai; Li, Pingfei; Zhang, Jian; Zhang, Junbo; Wang, Deping; Li, Songbo; Luo, Yixing; Wei, Zhengping; Bi, Guoyu; Yang, Xiang-Ping; Tang, Zhao-Hui

    2017-03-01

    Sepsis is the leading cause of death among critically ill patients and natural killer T (NKT) cell activation is essential to induce inflammatory cytokine cascade in sepsis. However, little is known about what regulates the NKT cell function during sepsis. Herein, we showed that T-cell immunoglobulin and mucin domain 3 (Tim-3) expression in NKT cells is elevated in experimental mice during sepsis. Tim-3 expression was positively correlated with NKT cell activation and apoptosis. In sepsis, interleukin (IL)-12 secreted by dendritic cell exposure to lipopolysaccharide increased the expression of Tim-3 in NKT cells. Administration of α-lactose to block Tim-3 signaling pathway significantly improved the survival of septic mice, concomitant with reduced IL-12 production by dendritic cells, reduced Tim-3 expression, prevented NKT cell apoptosis, and attenuated production of inflammatory cytokines. Collectively, Tim-3 signaling in NKT cells plays a critical role in the immunopathogenesis of sepsis. Thus, α-lactose could be a promising immunomodulatory agent in the treatment of sepsis.

  10. Interventions Targeting Glucocorticoid-Krüppel-like Factor 15-Branched-Chain Amino Acid Signaling Improve Disease Phenotypes in Spinal Muscular Atrophy Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisa M. Walter

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available The circadian glucocorticoid-Krüppel-like factor 15-branched-chain amino acid (GC-KLF15-BCAA signaling pathway is a key regulatory axis in muscle, whose imbalance has wide-reaching effects on metabolic homeostasis. Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA is a neuromuscular disorder also characterized by intrinsic muscle pathologies, metabolic abnormalities and disrupted sleep patterns, which can influence or be influenced by circadian regulatory networks that control behavioral and metabolic rhythms. We therefore set out to investigate the contribution of the GC-KLF15-BCAA pathway in SMA pathophysiology of Taiwanese Smn−/−;SMN2 and Smn2B/− mouse models. We thus uncover substantial dysregulation of GC-KLF15-BCAA diurnal rhythmicity in serum, skeletal muscle and metabolic tissues of SMA mice. Importantly, modulating the components of the GC-KLF15-BCAA pathway via pharmacological (prednisolone, genetic (muscle-specific Klf15 overexpression and dietary (BCAA supplementation interventions significantly improves disease phenotypes in SMA mice. Our study highlights the GC-KLF15-BCAA pathway as a contributor to SMA pathogenesis and provides several treatment avenues to alleviate peripheral manifestations of the disease. The therapeutic potential of targeting metabolic perturbations by diet and commercially available drugs could have a broader implementation across other neuromuscular and metabolic disorders characterized by altered GC-KLF15-BCAA signaling. Keywords: Spinal muscular atrophy, KLF15, Glucocorticoids, Branched-chain amino acids, Metabolism, Therapy

  11. A facile template method to synthesize significantly improved LiNi0.5Mn1.5O4 using corn stalk as a bio-template

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, Guiyang; Kong, Xin; Sun, Hongyan; Wang, Baosen; Yi, Zhongzhou; Wang, Quanbiao

    2014-01-01

    In order to simplify the template method for the synthesis of cathode materials for lithium ion batteries, a facile template method using plant stalks as bio-templates has been introduced. Based on this method, LiNi 0.5 Mn 1.5 O 4 spinel with a significantly improved electrochemical performance has been synthesized using corn stalk as a template. X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared pectroscopy (FTIR) and scanning electron microscope (SEM) have been used to investigate the phase composition and micro-morphologies of the products. Charge-discharge measurements in lithium cells, cyclic voltammetry (CV) and Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) have been used to study the electrochemical performance of the products. The results indicate that the templated product exhibits higher crystallinity than that of non-templated product. Both of the templated product and the non-templated product are combination of the ordered space group P4 3 32 and the disordered Fd-3 m. The specific BET surface area of the templated product is about twice larger than that of the non-templated product. Moreover, the electrochemical performances of the templated product including specific capacity, cycling stability and rate capability are significantly improved as compared with the non-templated product, due to its higher crystallinity, larger Li + diffusion coefficient and lower charge transfer resistance

  12. Arthroscopic Debridement for Primary Degenerative Osteoarthritis of the Elbow Leads to Significant Improvement in Range of Motion and Clinical Outcomes: A Systematic Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sochacki, Kyle R; Jack, Robert A; Hirase, Takashi; McCulloch, Patrick C; Lintner, David M; Liberman, Shari R; Harris, Joshua D

    2017-12-01

    The purpose of this investigation was to determine whether arthroscopic debridement of primary elbow osteoarthritis results in statistically significant and clinically relevant improvement in (1) elbow range of motion and (2) clinical outcomes with (3) low complication and reoperation rates. A systematic review was registered with PROSPERO and performed using PRISMA guidelines. Databases were searched for studies that investigated the outcomes of arthroscopic debridement for the treatment of primary osteoarthritis of the elbow in adult human patients. Study methodological quality was analyzed. Studies that included post-traumatic arthritis were excluded. Elbow motion and all elbow-specific patient-reported outcome scores were eligible for analysis. Comparisons between preoperative and postoperative values from each study were made using 2-sample Z-tests (http://in-silico.net/tools/statistics/ztest) using a P value osteoarthritis results in statistically significant and clinically relevant improvement in elbow range of motion and clinical outcomes with low complication and reoperation rates. Systematic review of level IV studies. Copyright © 2017 Arthroscopy Association of North America. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Transplantation of N-Acetyl Aspartyl-Glutamate Synthetase-Activated Neural Stem Cells after Experimental Traumatic Brain Injury Significantly Improves Neurological Recovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mingfeng Li

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Neural stem cells (NSCs hold considerable potential as a therapeutic tool for repair of the damaged nervous system. In the current study, we examined whether transplanted N-acetyl aspartyl-glutamate synthetase (NAAGS-activated NSCs (NAAGS/NSCs further improve neurological recovery following traumatic brain injury (TBI in Sprague-Dawley rats. Methods: Animals received TBI and stereotactic injection of NSCs, NAAGS/NSCs or phosphate buffered saline without cells (control into the injured cortex. NAAGS protein expression was detected through western blot analysis. Dialysate NAAG levels were analyzed with radioimmunoassay. Cell apoptosis was detected via TUNEL staining. The expression levels of specific pro-inflammatory cytokines were detected with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Results: Groups with transplanted NSCs and NAAGS/NSCs displayed significant recovery of the motor behavior, compared to the control group. At 14 and 21 days post-transplantation, the motor behavior in NAAGS/NSC group was significantly improved than that in NSC group (pConclusion: Our results collectively demonstrate that NAAGS/NSCs provide a more powerful autoplastic therapy for the injured nervous system.

  14. Using optical fibers with different modes to improve the signal-to-noise ratio of diffuse correlation spectroscopy flow-oximeter measurements

    OpenAIRE

    He, Lian; Lin, Yu; Shang, Yu; Shelton, Brent J.; Yu, Guoqiang

    2013-01-01

    The dual-wavelength diffuse correlation spectroscopy (DCS) flow-oximeter is an emerging technique enabling simultaneous measurements of blood flow and blood oxygenation changes in deep tissues. High signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) is crucial when applying DCS technologies in the study of human tissues where the detected signals are usually very weak. In this study, single-mode, few-mode, and multimode fibers are compared to explore the possibility of improving the SNR of DCS flow-oximeter measure...

  15. Insulin-Like growth factor-II (IGF-II) prevents proinflammatory cytokine-induced apoptosis and significantly improves islet survival after transplantation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Amy; Mohanasundaram, Daisy; Kireta, Svjetlana; Jessup, Claire F; Drogemuller, Chris J; Coates, P Toby H

    2013-03-15

    The early loss of functional islet mass (50-70%) due to apoptosis after clinical transplantation contributes to islet allograft failure. Insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-II is an antiapoptotic protein that is highly expressed in β-cells during development but rapidly decreases in postnatal life. We used an adenoviral (Ad) vector to overexpress IGF-II in isolated rat islets and investigated its antiapoptotic action against exogenous cytokines interleukin-1β- and interferon-γ-induced islet cell death in vitro. Using an immunocompromised marginal mass islet transplant model, the ability of Ad-IGF-II-transduced rat islets to restore euglycemia in nonobese diabetic/severe combined immunodeficient diabetic recipients was assessed. Ad-IGF-II transduction did not affect islet viability or function. Ad-IGF-II cytokine-treated islets exhibited decreased cell death (40% ± 2.8%) versus Ad-GFP and untransduced control islets (63.2% ± 2.5% and 53.6% ± 2.3%, respectively). Ad-IGF-II overexpression during cytokine treatment resulted in a marked reduction in terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling-positive apoptotic cells (8.3% ± 1.4%) versus Ad-GFP control (41% ± 4.2%) and untransduced control islets (46.5% ± 6.2%). Western blot analysis confirmed that IGF-II inhibits apoptosis via activation of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/Akt signaling pathway. Transplantation of IGF-II overexpressing islets under the kidney capsule of diabetic mice restored euglycemia in 77.8% of recipients compared with 18.2% and 47.5% of Ad-GFP and untransduced control islet recipients, respectively (Pislet transplant outcomes in vivo. Antiapoptotic gene transfer is a potentially powerful tool to improve islet survival after transplantation.

  16. Study on Magneto-Hydro-Dynamics Disturbance Signal Feature Classification Using Improved S-Transform Algorithm and Radial Basis Function Neural Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nan YU

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The interference signal in magneto-hydro-dynamics (MHD may be the disturbance from the power supply, the equipment itself, or the electromagnetic radiation. Interference signal mixed in normal signal, brings difficulties for signal analysis and processing. Recently proposed S-Transform algorithm combines advantages of short time Fourier transform and wavelet transform. It uses Fourier kernel and wavelet like Gauss window whose width is inversely proportional to the frequency. Therefore, S-Transform algorithm not only preserves the phase information of the signals but also has variable resolution like wavelet transform. This paper proposes a new method to establish a MHD signal classifier using S-transform algorithm and radial basis function neural network (RBFNN. Because RBFNN centers ascertained by k-means clustering algorithm probably are the local optimum, this paper analyzes the characteristics of k-means clustering algorithm and proposes an improved k-means clustering algorithm called GCW (Group-cluster-weight k-means clustering algorithm to improve the centers distribution. The experiment results show that the improvement greatly enhances the RBFNN performance.

  17. How Good Is Good: Improved Tracking and Managing of Safety Goals, Performance Indicators, Production Targets and Significant Events Using Learning Curves

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duffey, Rommey B.; Saull, John W.

    2002-01-01

    We show a new way to track and measure safety and performance using learning curves derived on a mathematical basis. When unusual or abnormal events occur in plants and equipment, the regulator and good management practice requires they be reported, investigated, understood and rectified. In addition to reporting so-called 'significant events', both management and the regulator often set targets for individual and collective performance, which are used for both reward and criticism. For almost completely safe systems, like nuclear power plants, commercial aircraft and chemical facilities, many parameters are tracked and measured. Continuous improvement has to be demonstrated, as well as meeting reduced occurrence rates, which are set as management goals or targets. This process usually takes the form of statistics for availability of plant and equipment, forced or unplanned maintenance outage, loss of safety function, safety or procedural violations, etc. These are often rolled up into a set of so-called 'Performance Indicators' as measures of how well safety and operation is being managed at a given facility. The overall operating standards of an industry are also measured. A whole discipline is formed of tracking, measuring, reporting, managing and understanding the plethora of indicators and data. Decreasing occurrence rates and meeting or exceeding goals are seen and rewarded as virtues. Managers and operators need to know how good is their safety management system that has been adopted and used (and paid for), and whether it can itself be improved. We show the importance of accumulated experience in correctly measuring and tracking the decreasing event and error rates speculating a finite minimum rate. We show that the rate of improvement constitutes a measurable 'learning curve', and the attainment of the goals and targets can be affected by the adopted measures. We examine some of the available data on significant events, reportable occurrences, and loss of

  18. Mobile physician reporting of clinically significant events-a novel way to improve handoff communication and supervision of resident on call activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nabors, Christopher; Peterson, Stephen J; Aronow, Wilbert S; Sule, Sachin; Mumtaz, Arif; Shah, Tushar; Eskridge, Etta; Wold, Eric; Stallings, Gary W; Burak, Kathleen Kelly; Goldberg, Randy; Guo, Gary; Sekhri, Arunabh; Mathew, George; Khera, Sahil; Montoya, Jessica; Sharma, Mala; Paudel, Rajiv; Frishman, William H

    2014-12-01

    Reporting of clinically significant events represents an important mechanism by which patient safety problems may be identified and corrected. However, time pressure and cumbersome report entry procedures have discouraged the full participation of physicians. To improve the process, our internal medicine training program developed an easy-to-use mobile platform that combines the reporting process with patient sign-out. Between August 25, 2011, and January 25, 2012, our trainees entered clinically significant events into i-touch/i-phone/i-pad based devices functioning in wireless-synchrony with our desktop application. Events were collected into daily reports that were sent from the handoff system to program leaders and attending physicians to plan for rounds and to correct safety problems. Using the mobile module, residents entered 31 reportable events per month versus the 12 events per month that were reported via desktop during a previous 6-month study period. Advances in information technology now permit clinically significant events that take place during "off hours" to be identified and reported (via handoff) to next providers and to supervisors via collated reports. This information permits hospital leaders to correct safety issues quickly and effectively, while attending physicians are able to use information gleaned from the reports to optimize rounding plans and to provide additional oversight of trainee on call patient management decisions.

  19. Spirulina Supplements Improved the Nutritional Status of Undernourished Children Quickly and Significantly: Experience from Kisantu, the Democratic Republic of the Congo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Féfé Khuabi Matondo

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Aim. Despite high levels of malnutrition, there is still very little information on the nutritional benefits of Spirulina, a natural alga that provides essential amino acids, rare essential lipids, and numerous minerals and vitamins, to undernourished children in the world. Methods. We carried out a prospective study of 50 children aged between six and 60 months. The intervention group consisted of 16 children who received 10 g of Spirulina daily, as well as the local diet administered by the nutritional centre, and the control group of 34 children who just received the local diet. Both groups of children were assessed on day zero, day 15, and day 30. Results. After treatment, the weight-for-age Z scores and weight-for-height Z scores increased significantly in the intervention group. At day 15, there was a statistically significant difference between the mean corpuscular volume, total proteins, and albumin (p<0.05 in both groups, in favour of the intervention group, and at day 30, this difference extended to all of the studied parameters (p<0.05. Conclusion. This study found that the nutritional status of undernourished children who received Spirulina supplements as well as the local diet administered by the nutritional centre improved quickly and significantly.

  20. Wushenziye Formula Improves Skeletal Muscle Insulin Resistance in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus via PTP1B-IRS1-Akt-GLUT4 Signaling Pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, Chunyu; Chang, Hong; La, Xiaojin; Li, Ji-An

    2017-01-01

    Background. Wushenziye formula (WSZYF) is an effective traditional Chinese medicine in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Aim. This study aimed to identify the effects and underlying mechanisms of WSZYF on improving skeletal muscle insulin resistance in T2DM. Methods. An animal model of T2DM was induced by Goto-Kakizaki diabetes prone rats fed with high fat and sugar for 4 weeks. Insulin resistance model was induced in skeletal muscle cell. Results. In vivo , WSZYF improved general conditions and decreased significantly fasting blood glucose, glycosylated serum protein, glycosylated hemoglobin, insulin concentration, and insulin resistance index of T2DM rats. In vitro , WSZYF enhanced glucose consumption in insulin resistance model of skeletal muscle cell. Furthermore, WSZYF affected the expressions of molecules in regulating T2DM, including increasing the expressions of p-IRS1, p-Akt, and GLUT4, reducing PTP1B expression. Conclusion . These findings displayed the potential of WSZYF as a new drug candidate in the treatment of T2DM and the antidiabetic mechanism of WSZYF is probably mediated through modulating the PTP1B-IRS1-Akt-GLUT4 signaling pathway.

  1. Wushenziye Formula Improves Skeletal Muscle Insulin Resistance in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus via PTP1B-IRS1-Akt-GLUT4 Signaling Pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chunyu Tian

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Wushenziye formula (WSZYF is an effective traditional Chinese medicine in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM. Aim. This study aimed to identify the effects and underlying mechanisms of WSZYF on improving skeletal muscle insulin resistance in T2DM. Methods. An animal model of T2DM was induced by Goto-Kakizaki diabetes prone rats fed with high fat and sugar for 4 weeks. Insulin resistance model was induced in skeletal muscle cell. Results. In vivo, WSZYF improved general conditions and decreased significantly fasting blood glucose, glycosylated serum protein, glycosylated hemoglobin, insulin concentration, and insulin resistance index of T2DM rats. In vitro, WSZYF enhanced glucose consumption in insulin resistance model of skeletal muscle cell. Furthermore, WSZYF affected the expressions of molecules in regulating T2DM, including increasing the expressions of p-IRS1, p-Akt, and GLUT4, reducing PTP1B expression. Conclusion. These findings displayed the potential of WSZYF as a new drug candidate in the treatment of T2DM and the antidiabetic mechanism of WSZYF is probably mediated through modulating the PTP1B-IRS1-Akt-GLUT4 signaling pathway.

  2. Scissor-type knife significantly improves self-completion rate of colorectal endoscopic submucosal dissection: Single-center prospective randomized trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamashina, Takeshi; Takeuchi, Yoji; Nagai, Kengo; Matsuura, Noriko; Ito, Takashi; Fujii, Mototsugu; Hanaoka, Noboru; Higashino, Koji; Uedo, Noriya; Ishihara, Ryu; Iishi, Hiroyasu

    2017-05-01

    Colorectal endoscopic submucosal dissection (C-ESD) is recognized as a difficult procedure. Recently, scissors-type knives were launched to reduce the difficulty of C-ESD. The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of the combined use of a scissors-type knife and a needle-type knife with a water-jet function (WJ needle-knife) for C-ESD compared with using the WJ needle-knife alone. This was a prospective randomized controlled trial in a referral center. Eighty-five patients with superficial colorectal neoplasms were enrolled and randomly assigned to undergo C-ESD using a WJ needle-knife alone (Flush group) or a scissor-type knife-supported WJ needle-knife (SB Jr group). Procedures were conducted by two supervised residents. Primary endpoint was self-completion rate by the residents. Self-completion rate was 67% in the SB Jr group, which was significantly higher than that in the Flush group (39%, P = 0.01). Even after exclusion of four patients in the SB Jr group in whom C-ESD was completed using the WJ needle-knife alone, the self-completion rate was significantly higher (63% vs 39%; P = 0.03). Median procedure time among the self-completion cases did not differ significantly between the two groups (59 vs 51 min; P = 0.14). No fatal adverse events were observed in either group. In this single-center phase II trial, scissor-type knife significantly improved residents' self-completion rate for C-ESD, with no increase in procedure time or adverse events. A multicenter trial would be warranted to confirm the validity of the present study. © 2016 Japan Gastroenterological Endoscopy Society.

  3. Improvement of the XANAM System and Acquisition of a Peak Signal with a High S/N ratio

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suzuki, S; Nakamura, M; Kinoshita, K; Koike, Y; Fujikawa, K; Matsudaira, N; Chun, W-J; Nomura, M; Asakura, K

    2007-01-01

    We have made remarkable progress in detecting X-ray-induced frequency shift signals, which will promote development of a chemically sensitive NC-AFM. A highperformance controller provides a tenfold higher signal to noise ratio than that previously reported. We confirmed that the frequency shift or complementary Z-feedback signal dependence on X-ray energy has a peak. An important feature of the signal is that it does not follow the absorption spectrum of a surface element. These new findings are important to elucidate this novel X-ray-induced phenomenon

  4. Call-to-balloon time dashboard in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction results in significant improvement in the logistic chain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermans, Maaike P J; Velders, Matthijs A; Smeekes, Martin; Drexhage, Olivier S; Hautvast, Raymond W M; Ytsma, Timon; Schalij, Martin J; Umans, Victor A W M

    2017-08-04

    Timely reperfusion with primary percutaneous coronary intervention (pPCI) in ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) patients is associated with superior clinical outcomes. Aiming to reduce ischaemic time, an innovative system for home-to-hospital (H2H) time monitoring was implemented, which enabled real-time evaluation of ischaemic time intervals, regular feedback and improvements in the logistic chain. The objective of this study was to assess the results after implementation of the H2H dashboard for monitoring and evaluation of ischaemic time in STEMI patients. Ischaemic time in STEMI patients transported by emergency medical services (EMS) and treated with pPCI in the Noordwest Ziekenhuis, Alkmaar before (2008-2009; n=495) and after the implementation of the H2H dashboard (2011-2014; n=441) was compared. Median time intervals were significantly shorter in the H2H group (door-to-balloon time 32 [IQR 25-43] vs. 40 [IQR 28-55] minutes, p-value dashboard was independently associated with shorter time delays. Real-time monitoring and feedback on time delay with the H2H dashboard improves the logistic chain in STEMI patients, resulting in shorter ischaemic time intervals.

  5. Improving significantly the failure strain and work hardening response of LPSO-strengthened Mg-Y-Zn-Al alloy via hot extrusion speed control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Xinghe; Chee, Winston; Chan, Jimmy; Kwok, Richard; Gupta, Manoj

    2017-07-01

    The effect of hot extrusion speed on the microstructure and mechanical properties of MgY1.06Zn0.76Al0.42 (at%) alloy strengthened by the novel long-period stacking ordered (LPSO) phase was systematically investigated. Increase in the speed of extrusion accelerated dynamic recrystallization of α-Mg via particle-stimulated nucleation and grain growth in the alloy. The intensive recrystallization and grain growth events weakened the conventional basal texture and Hall-Petch strengthening in the alloy which led to significant improvement in its failure strain from 4.9% to 19.6%. The critical strengthening contribution from LPSO phase known for attributing high strength to the alloy was observed to be greatly undermined by the parallel competition from texture weakening and the adverse Hall-Petch effect when the alloy was extruded at higher speed. Absence of work hardening interestingly observed in the alloy extruded at lower speed was discussed in terms of its ultra-fine grained microstructure which promoted the condition of steady-state defect density in the alloy; where dislocation annihilation balances out the generation of new dislocations during plastic deformation. One approach to improve work hardening response of the alloy to prevent unstable deformation and abrupt failure in service is to increase the grain diameter in the alloy by judiciously increasing the extrusion speed.

  6. Crocin Improves the Endothelial Function Regulated by Kca3.1 Through ERK and Akt Signaling Pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huike Yang

    2018-03-01

    . Conclusion: In the present study, these data strongly support the hypothesis that crocin could improve endothelial function through stimulation of the eNOS/NO pathway and other endothelial markers. This functional improvement is regulated by KCa3.1 via the MEK/ERK and PI3K/Akt signaling pathway.

  7. Prevention measures for avoiding unexpected drifting of marine component in recovery equipment of significant metals from sea water. Positioning and monitoring system for marine component and improvement of its positioning accuracy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tamada, Masao; Kasai, Noboru; Seko, Noriaki; Hasegawa, Shin; Takeda, Hayato; Katakai, Akio; Sugo, Takanobu [Japan Atomic Energy Research Inst., Takasaki, Gunma (Japan). Takasaki Radiation Chemistry Research Establishment; Kawabata, Yukiya [Ebara Reseach Co., Ltd., Fujisawa, Kanagawa (Japan); Onuma, Kenji [Mitsubishi Materials Corp., Tokyo (Japan)

    2001-11-01

    Positioning and monitoring system for marine component in recovery equipment of significant metals from seawater with adsorbent was designed and assembled to avoid unexpected drifting accident. This system which was set on float part of the marine component obtains the positioning data from GPS satellites and sends them to Takasaki and Mutsu establishments through satellite communication. In both establishments, the position data were shown in computer displays. As characteristic test for 20 days in the real sea, 262 data were obtained every 2 hours. The twice of the distance root mean square (2DRMS) was 223.7 m. To improve this performance, three new functions were added to the present firmware. There are to raise positioning resolutions in longitude and latitude from 0.001 to 0.00001 degree, to remove the reflection of GPS signal from sea surface, and to average remaining three positioning data after maximum and minimum data were omitted from continuous five positioning data. The improved system shows the 2DRMS positioning of 15.5 m. This performance is enough to prevent marine component from its drifting accident. (author)

  8. MO-FG-204-03: Using Edge-Preserving Algorithm for Significantly Improved Image-Domain Material Decomposition in Dual Energy CT

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhao, W; Niu, T; Xing, L; Xiong, G; Elmore, K; Min, J; Zhu, J; Wang, L

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: To significantly improve dual energy CT (DECT) imaging by establishing a new theoretical framework of image-domain material decomposition with incorporation of edge-preserving techniques. Methods: The proposed algorithm, HYPR-NLM, combines the edge-preserving non-local mean filter (NLM) with the HYPR-LR (Local HighlY constrained backPRojection Reconstruction) framework. Image denoising using HYPR-LR framework depends on the noise level of the composite image which is the average of the different energy images. For DECT, the composite image is the average of high- and low-energy images. To further reduce noise, one may want to increase the window size of the filter of the HYPR-LR, leading resolution degradation. By incorporating the NLM filtering and the HYPR-LR framework, HYPR-NLM reduces the boost material decomposition noise using energy information redundancies as well as the non-local mean. We demonstrate the noise reduction and resolution preservation of the algorithm with both iodine concentration numerical phantom and clinical patient data by comparing the HYPR-NLM algorithm to the direct matrix inversion, HYPR-LR and iterative image-domain material decomposition (Iter-DECT). Results: The results show iterative material decomposition method reduces noise to the lowest level and provides improved DECT images. HYPR-NLM significantly reduces noise while preserving the accuracy of quantitative measurement and resolution. For the iodine concentration numerical phantom, the averaged noise levels are about 2.0, 0.7, 0.2 and 0.4 for direct inversion, HYPR-LR, Iter- DECT and HYPR-NLM, respectively. For the patient data, the noise levels of the water images are about 0.36, 0.16, 0.12 and 0.13 for direct inversion, HYPR-LR, Iter-DECT and HYPR-NLM, respectively. Difference images of both HYPR-LR and Iter-DECT show edge effect, while no significant edge effect is shown for HYPR-NLM, suggesting spatial resolution is well preserved for HYPR-NLM. Conclusion: HYPR

  9. YH12852, a potent and highly selective 5-HT4 receptor agonist, significantly improves both upper and lower gastrointestinal motility in a guinea pig model of postoperative ileus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hussain, Z; Lee, Y J; Yang, H; Jeong, E J; Sim, J Y; Park, H

    2017-10-01

    Postoperative ileus (POI) is a transient gastrointestinal (GI) dysmotility that commonly develops after abdominal surgery. YH12852, a novel, potent and highly selective 5-hydroxytryptamine 4 (5-HT 4 ) receptor agonist, has been shown to improve both upper and lower GI motility in various animal studies and may have applications for the treatment of POI. Here, we investigated the effects and mechanism of action of YH12852 in a guinea pig model of POI to explore its therapeutic potential. The guinea pig model of POI was created by laparotomy, evisceration, and gentle manipulation of the cecum for 60 seconds, followed by closure with sutures under anesthesia. Group 1 received an oral administration of vehicle or YH12852 (1, 3, 10 or 30 mg/kg) only, while POI Group 2 was intraperitoneally pretreated with vehicle or 5-HT 4 receptor antagonist GR113808 (10 mg/kg) prior to oral dosing of vehicle or YH12852 (3 or 10 mg/kg). Upper GI transit was evaluated by assessing the migration of a charcoal mixture in the small intestine, while lower GI transit was assessed via measurement of fecal pellet output (FPO). YH12852 significantly accelerated upper and lower GI transit at the doses of 3, 10, and 30 mg/kg and reached its maximal effect at 10 mg/kg. These effects were significantly blocked by pretreatment of GR113808 10 mg/kg. Oral administration of YH12852 significantly accelerates and restores delayed upper and lower GI transit in a guinea pig model of POI. This drug may serve as a useful candidate for the treatment of postoperative ileus. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Pioglitazone improves the ability of learning and memory via activating ERK1/2 signaling pathway in the hippocampus of T2DM rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, F; Zang, L; Wu, D Y; Li, Y J; Zhang, Q; Wang, H B; Tian, G L; Mu, Y M

    2017-06-09

    To explore the correlation between effect of PIO (pioglitazone, PIO) on learning as well as memory and ERK1/2 (extracellular signal regulated kinase 1/2, ERK1/2) pathway in T2DM (type 2 diabetes mellitus, T2DM) rats, further to elucidate the potential mechanism of PIO in improvement of learning and memory. 12-week-old male SD rats (number of 10 per group) were randomly divided into control group (CON), T2DM group (DM) and T2DM +PIO group (DM+PG). Rats in DM and DM+PG groups were given high fat diet for 20 weeks, then treated with Streptozotocin (27mg/kg) by intraperitoneal injection at 21week. After 72h, the FBG (fasting blood glucose, FBG) was greater than 7.0mmol/L can considered T2DM rats. DM+PG group was treated with PIO (10 mg·kg -1 ·d -1 ) by gavage daily. After Hyperinsulinemic-Euglycemic Clamp Study and Morris water maze test at 30-week, all of animals were sacrificed. The expressions of RKIP (Raf-1 kinase inhibitor protein, RKIP) and ERK1/2 in hippocampus were detected using Western Blot and real-time PCR. The FBG level: DM group (7.68±0.54mmol/L) was higher than CON group (5.35±0.63mmol/L) and DM+PG group (6.07±0.84mmol/L), the differences were considered statistically significant (P 0.05); The relative content of p-ERK1/2 protein in CON group and DM+PG group rats dorsal were higher than those in group DM, the difference was considered statistically significant (P0.05). Activation of ERK1/2 signal transduction pathway via reducing RKIP in the hippocampus may be one of the mechanisms of PIO to improve the learning and memory of the T2DM rats. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. In vivo topical application of acetyl aspartic acid increases fibrillin-1 and collagen IV deposition leading to a significant improvement of skin firmness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillbro, J M; Merinville, E; Cattley, K; Al-Bader, T; Hagforsen, E; Nilsson, M; Mavon, A

    2015-10-01

    Acetyl aspartic acid (A-A-A) was discovered through gene array analysis with corresponding Cmap analysis. We found that A-A-A increased keratinocyte regeneration, inhibited dermal matrix metalloprotease (MMP) expression and relieved fibroblast stiffness through reduction of the fibroblast stiffness marker F-actin. Dermal absorption studies showed successful delivery to both the epidermal and dermal regions, and in-use trial demonstrated that 1% A-A-A was well tolerated. In this study, the aim was to investigate whether A-A-A could stimulate the synthesis of extracellular matrix supporting proteins in vivo and thereby improving the viscoelastic properties of human skin by conducting a dual histological and biophysical clinical study. Two separate double-blind vehicle-controlled in vivo studies were conducted using a 1% A-A-A containing oil-in-water (o/w) emulsion. In the histological study, 16 female volunteers (>55 years of age) exhibiting photodamaged skin on their forearm were included, investigating the effect of a 12-day treatment of A-A-A on collagen IV (COLIV) and fibrillin-1. In a subsequent pilot study, 0.1% retinol was used for comparison to A-A-A (1%). The biomechanical properties of the skin were assessed in a panel of 16 women (>45 years of age) using the standard Cutometer MPA580 after topical application of the test products for 28 days. The use of multiple suction enabled the assessment of F4, an area parameter specifically representing skin firmness. Twelve-day topical application of 1% A-A-A significantly increased COLIV and fibrillin with 13% and 6%, respectively, compared to vehicle. 1% A-A-A and 0.1% retinol were found to significantly reduce F4 after 28 days of treatment by 15.8% and 14.7%, respectively, in the pilot Cutometer study. No significant difference was found between retinol and A-A-A. However, only A-A-A exhibited a significant effect vs. vehicle on skin firmness which indicated the incremental benefit of A-A-A as a skin

  12. Low- and high-volume of intensive endurance training significantly improves maximal oxygen uptake after 10-weeks of training in healthy men.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arnt Erik Tjønna

    Full Text Available Regular exercise training improves maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max, but the optimal intensity and volume necessary to obtain maximal benefit remains to be defined. A growing body of evidence suggests that exercise training with low-volume but high-intensity may be a time-efficient means to achieve health benefits. In the present study, we measured changes in VO2max and traditional cardiovascular risk factors after a 10 wk. training protocol that involved three weekly high-intensity interval sessions. One group followed a protocol which consisted of 4×4 min at 90% of maximal heart rate (HRmax interspersed with 3 min active recovery at 70% HRmax (4-AIT, the other group performed a single bout protocol that consisted of 1×4 min at 90% HRmax (1-AIT. Twenty-six inactive but otherwise healthy overweight men (BMI: 25-30, age: 35-45 y were randomized to either 1-AIT (n = 11 or 4-AIT (n = 13. After training, VO2max increased by 10% (∼5.0 mL⋅kg(-1⋅min(-1 and 13% (∼6.5 mL⋅kg(-1⋅min(-1 after 1-AIT and 4-AIT, respectively (group difference, p = 0.08. Oxygen cost during running at a sub-maximal workload was reduced by 14% and 13% after 1-AIT and 4-AIT, respectively. Systolic blood pressure decreased by 7.1 and 2.6 mmHg after 1-AIT and 4-AIT respectively, while diastolic pressure decreased by 7.7 and 6.1 mmHg (group difference, p = 0.84. Both groups had a similar ∼5% decrease in fasting glucose. Body fat, total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, and ox-LDL cholesterol only were significantly reduced after 4-AIT. Our data suggest that a single bout of AIT performed three times per week may be a time-efficient strategy to improve VO2max and reduce blood pressure and fasting glucose in previously inactive but otherwise healthy middle-aged individuals. The 1-AIT type of exercise training may be readily implemented as part of activities of daily living and could easily be translated into programs designed to improve public health

  13. Significant Improvement of Puncture Accuracy and Fluoroscopy Reduction in Percutaneous Transforaminal Endoscopic Discectomy With Novel Lumbar Location System: Preliminary Report of Prospective Hello Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Guoxin; Guan, Xiaofei; Zhang, Hailong; Wu, Xinbo; Gu, Xin; Gu, Guangfei; Fan, Yunshan; He, Shisheng

    2015-12-01

    Prospective nonrandomized control study.The study aimed to investigate the implication of the HE's Lumbar LOcation (HELLO) system in improving the puncture accuracy and reducing fluoroscopy in percutaneous transforaminal endoscopic discectomy (PTED).Percutaneous transforaminal endoscopic discectomy is one of the most popular minimally invasive spine surgeries that heavily depend on repeated fluoroscopy. Increased fluoroscopy will induce higher radiation exposure to surgeons and patients. Accurate puncture in PTED can be achieved by accurate preoperative location and definite trajectory.The HELLO system mainly consists of self-made surface locator and puncture-assisted device. The surface locator was used to identify the exact puncture target and the puncture-assisted device was used to optimize the puncture trajectory. Patients who had single L4/5 or L5/S1 lumbar intervertebral disc herniation and underwent PTED were included the study. Patients receiving the HELLO system were assigned in Group A, and those taking conventional method were assigned in Group B. Study primary endpoint was puncture times and fluoroscopic times, and the secondary endpoint was location time and operation time.A total of 62 patients who received PTED were included in this study. The average age was 45.35 ± 8.70 years in Group A and 46.61 ± 7.84 years in Group B (P = 0.552). There were no significant differences in gender, body mass index, conservative time, and surgical segment between the 2 groups (P > 0.05). The puncture times were 1.19 ± 0.48 in Group A and 6.03 ± 1.87 in Group B (P HELLO system is accurate preoperative location and definite trajectory. This preliminary report indicated that the HELLO system significantly improves the puncture accuracy of PTED and reduces the fluoroscopic times, preoperative location time, as well as operation time. (ChiCTR-ICR-15006730).

  14. Prospective trial of angiography and embolization for all grade III to V blunt splenic injuries: nonoperative management success rate is significantly improved.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Preston R; Chang, Michael C; Hoth, J Jason; Mowery, Nathan T; Hildreth, Amy N; Martin, R Shayn; Holmes, James H; Meredith, J Wayne; Requarth, Jay A

    2014-04-01

    Nonoperative management (NOM) of blunt splenic injury is well accepted. Substantial failure rates in higher injury grades remain common, with one large study reporting rates of 19.6%, 33.3%, and 75% for grades III, IV, and V, respectively. Retrospective data show angiography and embolization can increase salvage rates in these severe injuries. We developed a protocol requiring referral of all blunt splenic injuries, grades III to V, without indication for immediate operation for angiography and embolization. We hypothesized that angiography and embolization of high-grade blunt splenic injury would reduce NOM failure rates in this population. This was a prospective study at our Level I trauma center as part of a performance-improvement project. Demographics, injury characteristics, and outcomes were compared with historic controls. The protocol required all stable patients with grade III to V splenic injuries be referred for angiography and embolization. In historic controls, referral was based on surgeon preference. From January 1, 2010 to December 31, 2012, there were 168 patients with grades III to V spleen injuries admitted; NOM was undertaken in 113 (67%) patients. The protocol was followed in 97 patients, with a failure rate of 5%. Failure rate in the 16 protocol deviations was 25% (p = 0.02). Historic controls from January 1, 2007 to December 31, 2009 were compared with the protocol group. One hundred and fifty-three patients with grade III to V injuries were admitted during this period, 80 (52%) patients underwent attempted NOM. Failure rate was significantly higher than for the protocol group (15%, p = 0.04). Use of a protocol requiring angiography and embolization for all high-grade spleen injuries slated for NOM leads to a significantly decreased failure rate. We recommend angiography and embolization as an adjunct to NOM for all grade III to V splenic injuries. Copyright © 2014 American College of Surgeons. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Significantly improving the yield of recombinant proteins in Bacillus subtilis by a novel powerful mutagenesis tool (ARTP): Alkaline α-amylase as a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Yingfang; Yang, Haiquan; Chen, Xianzhong; Sun, Bo; Du, Guocheng; Zhou, Zhemin; Song, Jiangning; Fan, You; Shen, Wei

    2015-10-01

    In this study, atmospheric and room temperature plasma (ARTP), a promising mutation breeding technique, was successfully applied to generate Bacillus subtilis mutants that yielded large quantities of recombinant protein. The high throughput screening platform was implemented to select those mutants with the highest yield of recombinant alkaline α-amylase (AMY), including the preferred mutant B. subtilis WB600 mut-12#. The yield and productivity of recombinant AMY in B. subtilis WB600 mut-12# increased 35.0% and 8.8%, respectively, the extracellular protein concentration of which increased 37.9%. B. subtilis WB600 mut-12# exhibited good genetic stability. Cells from B. subtilis WB600 mut-12# became shorter and wider than those from the wild-type. This study is the first to report a novel powerful mutagenesis tool (ARTP) that significantly improves the yield of recombinant proteins in B. subtilis and may therefore play an important role in the high expression level of proteins in recombinant microbial hosts. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Cross accumulative roll bonding—A novel mechanical technique for significant improvement of stir-cast Al/Al2O3 nanocomposite properties

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ardakani, Mohammad Reza Kamali; Amirkhanlou, Sajjad; Khorsand, Shohreh

    2014-01-01

    Lightweight metal-matrix nanocomposites (MMNCs—metal matrix with nanosized ceramic particles) can be of significance for automobile, aerospace, and numerous other applications. There are some problems in obtaining suitable mechanical properties of MMNCs, including weak bonding between reinforcement and matrix, non-uniformity of reinforcement nanoparticles and high porosity content. In this study, aluminum/alumina nanocomposite was fabricated by stircasting method. Subsequently, cross accumulative roll bonding (CARB) process was used as an effective method for refinement of microstructure and improvement of mechanical properties. The microstructural evolution and the mechanical properties of the nanocomposites during various CARB cycles were examined by the Archimedes method, X-ray defractometer, scanning electron microscopy and tensile testing. The results showed that the microstructure of the nanocomposite after eight cycles of CARB had an excellent distribution of alumina nanoparticles in aluminum matrix without any remarkable porosity. The X-ray diffraction results showed that the crystallite size of the nanocomposite was 71 nm by employing eight cycles of CARB technique. Mechanical experiment also indicated that the ultimate tensile strength and the elongation of the nanocomposite increased as the number of CARB cycles increased. After eight CARB cycles, ultimate tensile strength and the elongation values reached 344 MPa and 6.4%, which were 3.13 and 3.05 times greater than those of as-cast nanocomposites, respectively

  17. Physiologically-based, predictive analytics using the heart-rate-to-Systolic-Ratio significantly improves the timeliness and accuracy of sepsis prediction compared to SIRS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danner, Omar K; Hendren, Sandra; Santiago, Ethel; Nye, Brittany; Abraham, Prasad

    2017-04-01

    Enhancing the efficiency of diagnosis and treatment of severe sepsis by using physiologically-based, predictive analytical strategies has not been fully explored. We hypothesize assessment of heart-rate-to-systolic-ratio significantly increases the timeliness and accuracy of sepsis prediction after emergency department (ED) presentation. We evaluated the records of 53,313 ED patients from a large, urban teaching hospital between January and June 2015. The HR-to-systolic ratio was compared to SIRS criteria for sepsis prediction. There were 884 patients with discharge diagnoses of sepsis, severe sepsis, and/or septic shock. Variations in three presenting variables, heart rate, systolic BP and temperature were determined to be primary early predictors of sepsis with a 74% (654/884) accuracy compared to 34% (304/884) using SIRS criteria (p < 0.0001)in confirmed septic patients. Physiologically-based predictive analytics improved the accuracy and expediency of sepsis identification via detection of variations in HR-to-systolic ratio. This approach may lead to earlier sepsis workup and life-saving interventions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Polyethylene imine/graphene oxide layer-by-layer surface functionalization for significantly improved limit of detection and binding kinetics of immunoassays on acrylate surfaces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyazaki, Celina M; Mishra, Rohit; Kinahan, David J; Ferreira, Marystela; Ducrée, Jens

    2017-10-01

    Antibody immobilization on polymeric substrates is a key manufacturing step for microfluidic devices that implement sample-to-answer automation of immunoassays. In this work, a simple and versatile method to bio-functionalize poly(methylmethacrylate) (PMMA), a common material of such "Lab-on-a-Chip" systems, is proposed; using the Layer-by-Layer (LbL) technique, we assemble nanostructured thin films of poly(ethylene imine) (PEI) and graphene oxide (GO). The wettability of PMMA surfaces was significantly augmented by the surface treatment with (PEI/GO) 5 film, with an 81% reduction of the contact angle, while the surface roughness increased by 600%, thus clearly enhancing wettability and antibody binding capacity. When applied to enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs), the limit of detection of PMMA surface was notably improved from 340pgmL -1 on commercial grade polystyrene (PS) and 230pgmL -1 on plain PMMA surfaces to 130pgmL -1 on (PEI/GO) 5 treated PMMA. Furthermore, the accelerated antibody adsorption kinetics on the LbL films of GO allowed to substantially shorten incubation times, e.g. for anti-rat IgG adsorption from 2h down to 15min on conventional and treated surfaces, respectively. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Repletion of branched chain amino acids reverses mTORC1 signaling but not improved metabolism during dietary protein dilution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adriano Maida

    2017-08-01

    Conclusions: Repletion of BCAAs in dietary PD is sufficient to oppose changes in somatic mTORC1 signaling but does not reverse the hepatic ISR nor induce insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes during dietary PD.

  20. miR-155, identified as anti-metastatic by global miRNA profiling of a metastasis model, inhibits cancer cell extravasation and colonization in vivo and causes significant signaling alterations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gravgaard, Karina Hedelund; Terp, Mikkel G; Lund, Rikke R

    2015-01-01

    To gain insight into miRNA regulation in metastasis formation, we used a metastasis cell line model that allows investigation of extravasation and colonization of circulating cancer cells to lungs in mice. Using global miRNA profiling, 28 miRNAs were found to exhibit significantly altered...... proliferation or apoptosis in established lung tumors. To identify proteins regulated by miR-155 and thus delineate its function in our cell model, we compared the proteome of xenograft tumors derived from miR-155-overexpressing CL16 cells and CL16 control cells using mass spectrometry-based proteomics. >4......,000 proteins were identified, of which 92 were consistently differentially expressed. Network analysis revealed that the altered proteins were associated with cellular functions such as movement, growth and survival as well as cell-to-cell signaling and interaction. Downregulation of the three metastasis...

  1. Optimizing Taq polymerase concentration for improved signal-to-noise in the broad range detection of low abundance bacteria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rudolph Spangler

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: PCR in principle can detect a single target molecule in a reaction mixture. Contaminating bacterial DNA in reagents creates a practical limit on the use of PCR to detect dilute bacterial DNA in environmental or public health samples. The most pernicious source of contamination is microbial DNA in DNA polymerase preparations. Importantly, all commercial Taq polymerase preparations inevitably contain contaminating microbial DNA. Removal of DNA from an enzyme preparation is problematical. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: This report demonstrates that the background of contaminating DNA detected by quantitative PCR with broad host range primers can be decreased greater than 10-fold through the simple expedient of Taq enzyme dilution, without altering detection of target microbes in samples. The general method is: For any thermostable polymerase used for high-sensitivity detection, do a dilution series of the polymerase crossed with a dilution series of DNA or bacteria that work well with the test primers. For further work use the concentration of polymerase that gave the least signal in its negative control (H(2O while also not changing the threshold cycle for dilutions of spiked DNA or bacteria compared to higher concentrations of Taq polymerase. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: It is clear from the studies shown in this report that a straightforward procedure of optimizing the Taq polymerase concentration achieved "treatment-free" attenuation of interference by contaminating bacterial DNA in Taq polymerase preparations. This procedure should facilitate detection and quantification with broad host range primers of a small number of bona fide bacteria (as few as one in a sample.

  2. Accelerating SystemVerilog UVM Based VIP to Improve Methodology for Verification of Image Signal Processing Designs Using HW Emulator

    OpenAIRE

    Jain, Abhishek; Gupta, Piyush Kumar; Gupta, Dr. Hima; Dhar, Sachish

    2014-01-01

    In this paper we present the development of Acceleratable UVCs from standard UVCs in SystemVerilog and their usage in UVM based Verification Environment of Image Signal Processing designs to increase run time performance. This paper covers development of Acceleratable UVCs from standard UVCs for internal control and data buses of ST imaging group by partitioning of transaction-level components and cycle-accurate signal-level components between the software simulator and hardware accelerator r...

  3. Enhanced Wnt signaling improves bone mass and strength, but not brittleness, in the Col1a1(+/mov13) mouse model of type I Osteogenesis Imperfecta.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobsen, Christina M; Schwartz, Marissa A; Roberts, Heather J; Lim, Kyung-Eun; Spevak, Lyudmila; Boskey, Adele L; Zurakowski, David; Robling, Alexander G; Warman, Matthew L

    2016-09-01

    Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI) comprises a group of genetic skeletal fragility disorders. The mildest form of OI, Osteogenesis Imperfecta type I, is frequently caused by haploinsufficiency mutations in COL1A1, the gene encoding the α1(I) chain of type 1 collagen. Children with OI type I have a 95-fold higher fracture rate compared to unaffected children. Therapies for OI type I in the pediatric population are limited to anti-catabolic agents. In adults with osteoporosis, anabolic therapies that enhance Wnt signaling in bone improve bone mass, and ongoing clinical trials are determining if these therapies also reduce fracture risk. We performed a proof-of-principle experiment in mice to determine whether enhancing Wnt signaling in bone could benefit children with OI type I. We crossed a mouse model of OI type I (Col1a1(+/Mov13)) with a high bone mass (HBM) mouse (Lrp5(+/p.A214V)) that has increased bone strength from enhanced Wnt signaling. Offspring that inherited the OI and HBM alleles had higher bone mass and strength than mice that inherited the OI allele alone. However, OI+HBM and OI mice still had bones with lower ductility compared to wild-type mice. We conclude that enhancing Wnt signaling does not make OI bone normal, but does improve bone properties that could reduce fracture risk. Therefore, agents that enhance Wnt signaling are likely to benefit children and adults with OI type 1. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Measurements of noise immission from wind turbines at receptor locations: Use of a vertical microphone board to improve the signal-to-noise ratio

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fegeant, Olivier

    1999-01-01

    The growing interest in wind energy has increased the need of accuracy in wind turbine noise immission measurements and thus, the need of new measurement techniques. This paper shows that mounting the microphone on a vertical board improves the signal-to-noise ratio over the whole frequency range compared to the free microphone technique. Indeed, the wind turbine is perceived two times noisier by the microphone due to the signal reflection by the board while, in addition, the wind noise is reduced. Furthermore, the board shielding effect allows the measurements to be carried out in the presence of reflecting surfaces such as building facades

  5. Short separation regression improves statistical significance and better localizes the hemodynamic response obtained by near-infrared spectroscopy for tasks with differing autonomic responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yücel, Meryem A; Selb, Juliette; Aasted, Christopher M; Petkov, Mike P; Becerra, Lino; Borsook, David; Boas, David A

    2015-07-01

    Autonomic nervous system response is known to be highly task-dependent. The sensitivity of near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) measurements to superficial layers, particularly to the scalp, makes it highly susceptible to systemic physiological changes. Thus, one critical step in NIRS data processing is to remove the contribution of superficial layers to the NIRS signal and to obtain the actual brain response. This can be achieved using short separation channels that are sensitive only to the hemodynamics in the scalp. We investigated the contribution of hemodynamic fluctuations due to autonomous nervous system activation during various tasks. Our results provide clear demonstrations of the critical role of using short separation channels in NIRS measurements to disentangle differing autonomic responses from the brain activation signal of interest.

  6. An Evidence-Based Education Program For Adults About Child Sexual Abuse (“Prevent It!” Significantly Improves Behaviours As Well As Attitudes And Knowledge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin K Martin

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Here we describe the development of an evidence-based education program for adults about childhood sexual abuse (CSA, called Prevent It! Uniquely, the primary goal of this program was to change the behaviour of participants, as well as to increase knowledge about CSA and positive attitudes towards it. A comprehensive review shows no previous similar approach. The program includes a detailed manual to allow standardized administration by trained facilitators, as well as multiple video segments from CSA survivors and professionals. A total of 23 program workshops were run, with 366 adults participating. Of these, 312 (85% agreed to take part in the study. All completed baseline ratings prior to the program and 195 (63% of study sample completed follow-up assessments at 3-months. There were no significant differences between the demographic make-up of the baseline group and the follow-up group. Assessments included demographic data, knowledge, attitudes, and several measures of behaviour (our primary outcome variable. Behavioural questions asked individuals to select behaviours used in the previous 3-months from a list of options. Questions also included asking how many times in the previous 3-months have you talked about healthy sexual development or child sexual abuse with a child you know; suspected a child was sexually abused; taken steps to protect a child; or reported suspected sexual abuse to police or child welfare? The majority of attendees were women, with the commonest age group being between 30 – 39 years old. Approximately 33% had experienced CSA themselves. At 3-month follow-up there were highly statistically significant improvements in several aspects of behaviour and knowledge, and attitudes regarding CSA. For example, the number of subjects actively looking for evidence of CSA increased from 46% at baseline to 81% at follow-up, while the number of subjects who actively took steps to protect children increased from 25% at baseline

  7. Direct renin inhibitor ameliorates insulin resistance by improving insulin signaling and oxidative stress in the skeletal muscle from post-infarct heart failure in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fukushima, Arata; Kinugawa, Shintaro; Takada, Shingo; Matsumoto, Junichi; Furihata, Takaaki; Mizushima, Wataru; Tsuda, Masaya; Yokota, Takashi; Matsushima, Shouji; Okita, Koichi; Tsutsui, Hiroyuki

    2016-05-15

    Insulin resistance can occur as a consequence of heart failure (HF). Activation of the renin-angiotensin system (RAS) may play a crucial role in this phenomenon. We thus investigated the effect of a direct renin inhibitor, aliskiren, on insulin resistance in HF after myocardial infarction (MI). MI and sham operation were performed in male C57BL/6J mice. The mice were divided into 4 groups and treated with sham-operation (Sham, n=10), sham-operation and aliskiren (Sham+Aliskiren; 10mg/kg/day, n=10), MI (n=11), or MI and aliskiren (MI+Aliskiren, n=11). After 4 weeks, MI mice showed left ventricular dilation and dysfunction, which were not affected by aliskiren. The percent decrease of blood glucose after insulin load was significantly smaller in MI than in Sham (14±5% vs. 36±2%), and was ameliorated in MI+Aliskiren (34±5%) mice. Insulin-stimulated serine-phosphorylation of Akt and glucose transporter 4 translocation were decreased in the skeletal muscle of MI compared to Sham by 57% and 69%, and both changes were ameliorated in the MI+Aliskiren group (91% and 94%). Aliskiren administration in MI mice significantly inhibited plasma renin activity and angiotensin II (Ang II) levels. Moreover, (pro)renin receptor expression and local Ang II production were upregulated in skeletal muscle from MI and were attenuated in MI+Aliskiren mice, in tandem with a decrease in superoxide production and NAD(P)H oxidase activities. In conclusion, aliskiren ameliorated insulin resistance in HF by improving insulin signaling in the skeletal muscle, at least partly by inhibiting systemic and (pro)renin receptor-mediated local RAS activation, and subsequent NAD(P)H oxidase-induced oxidative stress. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. FGF signaling via MAPK is required early and improves Activin A-induced definitive endoderm formation from human embryonic stem cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sui, Lina, E-mail: linasui@vub.ac.be [Cell Differentiation Unit, Diabetes Research Center, Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), Laarbeeklaan 103, 1090 Brussels (Belgium); Mfopou, Josue K. [Cell Differentiation Unit, Diabetes Research Center, Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), Laarbeeklaan 103, 1090 Brussels (Belgium); Geens, Mieke; Sermon, Karen [Department of Embryology and Genetics, Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), Laarbeeklaan 103, 1090 Brussels (Belgium); Bouwens, Luc [Cell Differentiation Unit, Diabetes Research Center, Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), Laarbeeklaan 103, 1090 Brussels (Belgium)

    2012-09-28

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Deep study the FGF signaling role during DE specification in the context of hESCs. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer DE differentiation from hESCs has an early dependence on FGF signaling. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer A serum-free DE protocol is developed based on the findings. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The DE cells showed potential to differentiate into pancreatic progenitor cells. -- Abstract: Considering their unlimited proliferation and pluripotency properties, human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) constitute a promising resource applicable for cell replacement therapy. To facilitate this clinical translation, it is critical to study and understand the early stage of hESCs differentiation wherein germ layers are defined. In this study, we examined the role of FGF signaling in Activin A-induced definitive endoderm (DE) differentiation in the absence of supplemented animal serum. We found that activated FGF/MAPK signaling is required at the early time point of Activin A-induced DE formation. In addition, FGF activation increased the number of DE cells compared to Activin A alone. These DE cells could further differentiate into PDX1 and NKX6.1 positive pancreatic progenitors in vitro. We conclude that Activin A combined with FGF/MAPK signaling efficiently induce DE cells in the absence of serum. These findings improve our understanding of human endoderm formation, and constitute a step forward in the generation of clinical grade hESCs progenies for cell therapy.

  9. FGF signaling via MAPK is required early and improves Activin A-induced definitive endoderm formation from human embryonic stem cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sui, Lina; Mfopou, Josué K.; Geens, Mieke; Sermon, Karen; Bouwens, Luc

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► Deep study the FGF signaling role during DE specification in the context of hESCs. ► DE differentiation from hESCs has an early dependence on FGF signaling. ► A serum-free DE protocol is developed based on the findings. ► The DE cells showed potential to differentiate into pancreatic progenitor cells. -- Abstract: Considering their unlimited proliferation and pluripotency properties, human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) constitute a promising resource applicable for cell replacement therapy. To facilitate this clinical translation, it is critical to study and understand the early stage of hESCs differentiation wherein germ layers are defined. In this study, we examined the role of FGF signaling in Activin A-induced definitive endoderm (DE) differentiation in the absence of supplemented animal serum. We found that activated FGF/MAPK signaling is required at the early time point of Activin A-induced DE formation. In addition, FGF activation increased the number of DE cells compared to Activin A alone. These DE cells could further differentiate into PDX1 and NKX6.1 positive pancreatic progenitors in vitro. We conclude that Activin A combined with FGF/MAPK signaling efficiently induce DE cells in the absence of serum. These findings improve our understanding of human endoderm formation, and constitute a step forward in the generation of clinical grade hESCs progenies for cell therapy.

  10. A novel strategy to improve protein secretion via overexpression of the SppA signal peptide peptidase in Bacillus licheniformis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Dongbo; Wang, Hao; He, Penghui; Zhu, Chengjun; Wang, Qin; Wei, Xuetuan; Nomura, Christopher T; Chen, Shouwen

    2017-04-24

    Signal peptide peptidases play an important role in the removal of remnant signal peptides in the cell membrane, a critical step for extracellular protein production. Although these proteins are likely a central component for extracellular protein production, there has been a lack of research on whether protein secretion could be enhanced via overexpression of signal peptide peptidases. In this study, both nattokinase and α-amylase were employed as prototypical secreted target proteins to evaluate the function of putative signal peptide peptidases (SppA and TepA) in Bacillus licheniformis. We observed dramatic decreases in the concentrations of both target proteins (45 and 49%, respectively) in a sppA deficient strain, while the extracellular protein yields of nattokinase and α-amylase were increased by 30 and 67% respectively in a strain overexpressing SppA. In addition, biomass, specific enzyme activities and the relative gene transcriptional levels were also enhanced due to the overexpression of sppA, while altering the expression levels of tepA had no effect on the concentrations of the secreted target proteins. Our results confirm that SppA, but not TepA, plays an important functional role for protein secretion in B. licheniformis. Our results indicate that the sppA overexpression strain, B. licheniformis BL10GS, could be used as a promising host strain for the industrial production of heterologous secreted proteins.

  11. Blockade of IP[subscript 3]-Mediated SK Channel Signaling in the Rat Medial Prefrontal Cortex Improves Spatial Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brennan, Avis R.; Dolinsky, Beth; Vu, Mai-Anh T.; Stanley, Marion; Yeckel, Mark F.; Arnsten, Amy F. T.

    2008-01-01

    Planning and directing thought and behavior require the working memory (WM) functions of prefrontal cortex. WM is compromised by stress, which activates phosphatidylinositol (PI)-mediated IP[subscript 3]-PKC intracellular signaling. PKC overactivation impairs WM operations and in vitro studies indicate that IP[subscript 3] receptor (IP[subscript…

  12. Parallel Array Bistable Stochastic Resonance System with Independent Input and Its Signal-to-Noise Ratio Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Li

    2014-01-01

    with independent components and averaged output; second, we give a deduction of the output signal-to-noise ratio (SNR for this system to show the performance. Our examples show the enhancement of the system and how different parameters influence the performance of the proposed parallel array.

  13. Fabrication and characterization of nuclear localization signal-conjugated glycol chitosan micelles for improving the nuclear delivery of doxorubicin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhao J

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Jingmou Yu,1 Xin Xie,1 Meirong Zheng,1 Ling Yu,2 Lei Zhang,1 Jianguo Zhao,1 Dengzhao Jiang,1 Xiangxin Che11Key Laboratory of Systems Biology Medicine of Jiangxi Province, College of Basic Medical Science, Jiujiang University, Jiujiang, 2Division of Nursing, 2nd Affiliated Hospital, Yichun University, Yichun, People's Republic of ChinaBackground: Supramolecular micelles as drug-delivery vehicles are generally unable to enter the nucleus of nondividing cells. In the work reported here, nuclear localization signal (NLS-modified polymeric micelles were studied with the aim of improving nuclear drug delivery.Methods: In this research, cholesterol-modified glycol chitosan (CHGC was synthesized. NLS-conjugated CHGC (NCHGC was synthesized and characterized using proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, dynamic light scattering, and fluorescence spectroscopy. Doxorubicin (DOX, an anticancer drug with an intracellular site of action in the nucleus, was chosen as a model drug. DOX-loaded micelles were prepared by an emulsion/solvent evaporation method. The cellular uptake of different DOX formulations was analyzed by flow cytometry and confocal laser scanning microscopy. The cytotoxicity of blank micelles, free DOX, and DOX-loaded micelles in vitro was investigated by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT assay in HeLa and HepG2 cells.Results: The degree of substitution was 5.9 cholesterol and 3.8 NLS groups per 100 sugar residues of the NCHGC conjugate. The critical aggregation concentration of the NCHGC micelles in aqueous solution was 0.0209 mg/mL. The DOX-loaded NCHGC (DNCHGC micelles were observed as being almost spherical in shape under transmission electron microscopy, and the size was determined as 248 nm by dynamic light scattering. The DOX-loading content of the DNCHGC micelles was 10.1%. The DOX-loaded micelles showed slow drug-release behavior within 72 hours in vitro. The DNCHGC micelles exhibited greater

  14. Dietary nitrate improves age-related hypertension and metabolic abnormalities in rats via modulation of angiotensin II receptor signaling and inhibition of superoxide generation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hezel, M.; Peleli, Maria; Liu, M.

    2016-01-01

    . Finally, nitrate treatment in aged rats normalized the gene expression profile of ANG II receptors (AT1A, AT2, AT1A/AT2 ratio) in the renal and cardiovascular systems without altering plasma levels of renin or ANG II. Our results show that boosting the nitrate-nitrite-NO pathway can partly compensate...... that increased angiotensin II (ANG II) signaling is also implicated in the pathogenesis of endothelial dysfunction and hypertension by accelerating formation of reactive oxygen species. This study was designed to test the hypothesis that dietary nitrate supplementation could reduce blood pressure and improve...... glucose tolerance in aged rats, via attenuation of NADPH oxidase activity and ANG II receptor signaling. Dietary nitrate supplementation for two weeks reduced blood pressure (10–15 mmHg) and improved glucose clearance in old, but not in young rats. These favorable effects were associated with increased...

  15. Novel Oversampling Technique for Improving Signal-to-Quantization Noise Ratio on Accelerometer-Based Smart Jerk Sensors in CNC Applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rangel-Magdaleno, Jose J; Romero-Troncoso, Rene J; Osornio-Rios, Roque A; Cabal-Yepez, Eduardo

    2009-01-01

    Jerk monitoring, defined as the first derivative of acceleration, has become a major issue in computerized numeric controlled (CNC) machines. Several works highlight the necessity of measuring jerk in a reliable way for improving production processes. Nowadays, the computation of jerk is done by finite differences of the acceleration signal, computed at the Nyquist rate, which leads to low signal-to-quantization noise ratio (SQNR) during the estimation. The novelty of this work is the development of a smart sensor for jerk monitoring from a standard accelerometer, which has improved SQNR. The proposal is based on oversampling techniques that give a better estimation of jerk than that produced by a Nyquist-rate differentiator. Simulations and experimental results are presented to show the overall methodology performance.

  16. Detecting Novelty and Significance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrari, Vera; Bradley, Margaret M.; Codispoti, Maurizio; Lang, Peter J.

    2013-01-01

    Studies of cognition often use an “oddball” paradigm to study effects of stimulus novelty and significance on information processing. However, an oddball tends to be perceptually more novel than the standard, repeated stimulus as well as more relevant to the ongoing task, making it difficult to disentangle effects due to perceptual novelty and stimulus significance. In the current study, effects of perceptual novelty and significance on ERPs were assessed in a passive viewing context by presenting repeated and novel pictures (natural scenes) that either signaled significant information regarding the current context or not. A fronto-central N2 component was primarily affected by perceptual novelty, whereas a centro-parietal P3 component was modulated by both stimulus significance and novelty. The data support an interpretation that the N2 reflects perceptual fluency and is attenuated when a current stimulus matches an active memory representation and that the amplitude of the P3 reflects stimulus meaning and significance. PMID:19400680

  17. The Significance of Emotions and Professional Relations for Accommodating a Web-Based Ulcer Record and Improving Home-Based Care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne G. Ekeland

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Evidence of technological performance, medical improvements and economic effectiveness is generally considered sufficient for judging advances in healthcare. In this paper, I aim to add knowledge about the ways human emotions and professional relations play roles in the processes of accommodating new technologies for quality improvements. A newly-implemented, web-based ulcer record service for patients with chronic skin ulcers constitutes the case. After one year, only a few home care nurses were using the service, interacting with a specialist team. The result was disappointing, but the few users were enthusiastic. An explorative, qualitative study was initiated to understand the users, the processes that accounted for use and how improvements were enacted. In the paper, I expose the emotional aspects of the record accommodation by analyzing the ways emotions were translated in the process and how they influenced the improvements. I contend that use came about through a heterogeneous assemblage of ethical engagement and compassionate emotions stemming from frustration, combined with technological affordances and relations between different professionals. Certain aspects of the improvements are exposed. These are discussed as: (1 reconciliations between the medical facts and rational judgments, on one side, and the emotional and subjective values for judging quality, on the other; and (2 mediation between standardized and personalized care. The healing of ulcers was combined with a sense of purpose and wellbeing to validate improvements. Emotions were strongly involved, and the power of evaluative emotions and professional relations should be further explored to add to the understanding of innovation processes and to validate quality improvements.

  18. The Significance of Emotions and Professional Relations for Accommodating a Web-Based Ulcer Record and Improving Home-Based Care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ekeland, Anne G

    2015-01-22

    Evidence of technological performance, medical improvements and economic effectiveness is generally considered sufficient for judging advances in healthcare. In this paper, I aim to add knowledge about the ways human emotions and professional relations play roles in the processes of accommodating new technologies for quality improvements. A newly-implemented, web-based ulcer record service for patients with chronic skin ulcers constitutes the case. After one year, only a few home care nurses were using the service, interacting with a specialist team. The result was disappointing, but the few users were enthusiastic. An explorative, qualitative study was initiated to understand the users, the processes that accounted for use and how improvements were enacted. In the paper, I expose the emotional aspects of the record accommodation by analyzing the ways emotions were translated in the process and how they influenced the improvements. I contend that use came about through a heterogeneous assemblage of ethical engagement and compassionate emotions stemming from frustration, combined with technological affordances and relations between different professionals. Certain aspects of the improvements are exposed. These are discussed as: (1) reconciliations between the medical facts and rational judgments, on one side, and the emotional and subjective values for judging quality, on the other; and (2) mediation between standardized and personalized care. The healing of ulcers was combined with a sense of purpose and wellbeing to validate improvements. Emotions were strongly involved, and the power of evaluative emotions and professional relations should be further explored to add to the understanding of innovation processes and to validate quality improvements.

  19. Significance of high-intensity signals on cranial MRI T{sub 2} weighted image in diagnosis of age-associated dementia. From a viewpoint of reversibility of brain function

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kishiro, Masaki [St. Marianna Univ., Kawasaki, Kanagawa (Japan). School of Medicine

    1994-08-01

    This study was undertaken to determine whether changes of EEG band profile in patients showing high-intensity signal (HIS) on cranial magnetic resonance images (MRI), who had however no vascular lesions on cranial CT, were similar to those in multi-infarct dementia (MID) or senile dementia of Alzheimer type (SDAT) patients and to determine the significance of HIS in the diagnosis of SDAT. Forty-two patients with dementia diagnosed according to DSM-III-R were divided into HIS (n=21), MID (n=13), and SDAT (n=8) based on CT and MRI findings. Multi-infarcted lesions were seen on cranial CT and HIS was seen on cranial MRI in MID patients. There were no abnormal lesions except brain atrophy on cranial CT and MRI in SDAT patients. Appearance rates (%) of the 2-18 c/s frequency bands using computerized quantitative EEG before and after administration of protirelin tartrate (TRH-T) were analyzed in the frontal, central, parietal and occipital areas of the brain. There were no significant differences in appearance rates of EEG frequency bands before administration of TRH-T in HIS, MID, and SDAT patients. A significant decrease in appearance rates of slow waves and a significant increase in appearance rates of {alpha} waves were observed after administration of TRH-T in the four areas in MID patients compared with those before administration. No significant differences in appearance rates of EEG frequency bands were observed after administration of TRH-T in the four areas in HIS and SDAT patients compared with those before administration. Changes of the EEG band profile in HIS patients were similar to those in SDAT patients. In the presence of appearance of HSI on cranial MRI T{sub 2} weighted images, the possibility of SDAT patients cannot be excluded. Therefore, SDAT should be diagnosed based on both clinical data and the absence of brain vascular lesions on cranial CT. Also, HIS on MRI T{sub 2}-weighted images is considered to reflect non-vascular lesions. (J.N.P.).

  20. Improved Multiscale Entropy Technique with Nearest-Neighbor Moving-Average Kernel for Nonlinear and Nonstationary Short-Time Biomedical Signal Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. P. Arunachalam

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Analysis of biomedical signals can yield invaluable information for prognosis, diagnosis, therapy evaluation, risk assessment, and disease prevention which is often recorded as short time series data that challenges existing complexity classification algorithms such as Shannon entropy (SE and other techniques. The purpose of this study was to improve previously developed multiscale entropy (MSE technique by incorporating nearest-neighbor moving-average kernel, which can be used for analysis of nonlinear and non-stationary short time series physiological data. The approach was tested for robustness with respect to noise analysis using simulated sinusoidal and ECG waveforms. Feasibility of MSE to discriminate between normal sinus rhythm (NSR and atrial fibrillation (AF was tested on a single-lead ECG. In addition, the MSE algorithm was applied to identify pivot points of rotors that were induced in ex vivo isolated rabbit hearts. The improved MSE technique robustly estimated the complexity of the signal compared to that of SE with various noises, discriminated NSR and AF on single-lead ECG, and precisely identified the pivot points of ex vivo rotors by providing better contrast between the rotor core and the peripheral region. The improved MSE technique can provide efficient complexity analysis of variety of nonlinear and nonstationary short-time biomedical signals.

  1. Clinical-Radiological Parameters Improve the Prediction of the Thrombolysis Time Window by Both MRI Signal Intensities and DWI-FLAIR Mismatch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madai, Vince Istvan; Wood, Carla N; Galinovic, Ivana; Grittner, Ulrike; Piper, Sophie K; Revankar, Gajanan S; Martin, Steve Z; Zaro-Weber, Olivier; Moeller-Hartmann, Walter; von Samson-Himmelstjerna, Federico C; Heiss, Wolf-Dieter; Ebinger, Martin; Fiebach, Jochen B; Sobesky, Jan

    2016-01-01

    With regard to acute stroke, patients with unknown time from stroke onset are not eligible for thrombolysis. Quantitative diffusion weighted imaging (DWI) and fluid attenuated inversion recovery (FLAIR) MRI relative signal intensity (rSI) biomarkers have been introduced to predict eligibility for thrombolysis, but have shown heterogeneous results in the past. In the present work, we investigated whether the inclusion of easily obtainable clinical-radiological parameters would improve the prediction of the thrombolysis time window by rSIs and compared their performance to the visual DWI-FLAIR mismatch. In a retrospective study, patients from 2 centers with proven stroke with onset value/mean value of the unaffected hemisphere). Additionally, the visual DWI-FLAIR mismatch was evaluated. Prediction of the thrombolysis time window was evaluated by the area-under-the-curve (AUC) derived from receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis. Factors such as the association of age, National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale, MRI field strength, lesion size, vessel occlusion and Wahlund-Score with rSI were investigated and the models were adjusted and stratified accordingly. In 82 patients, the unadjusted rSI measures DWI-mean and -SD showed the highest AUCs (AUC 0.86-0.87). Adjustment for clinical-radiological covariates significantly improved the performance of FLAIR-mean (0.91) and DWI-SD (0.91). The best prediction results based on the AUC were found for the final stratified and adjusted models of DWI-SD (0.94) and FLAIR-mean (0.96) and a multivariable DWI-FLAIR model (0.95). The adjusted visual DWI-FLAIR mismatch did not perform in a significantly worse manner (0.89). ADC-rSIs showed fair performance in all models. Quantitative DWI and FLAIR MRI biomarkers as well as the visual DWI-FLAIR mismatch provide excellent prediction of eligibility for thrombolysis in acute stroke, when easily obtainable clinical-radiological parameters are included in the prediction

  2. Real-time photonic sampling with improved signal-to-noise and distortion ratio using polarization-dependent modulators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Dong; Zhang, Zhiyao; Liu, Yong; Li, Xiaojun; Jiang, Wei; Tan, Qinggui

    2018-04-01

    A real-time photonic sampling structure with effective nonlinearity suppression and excellent signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) performance is proposed. The key points of this scheme are the polarization-dependent modulators (P-DMZMs) and the sagnac loop structure. Thanks to the polarization sensitive characteristic of P-DMZMs, the differences between transfer functions of the fundamental signal and the distortion become visible. Meanwhile, the selection of specific biases in P-DMZMs is helpful to achieve a preferable linearized performance with a low noise level for real-time photonic sampling. Compared with the quadrature-biased scheme, the proposed scheme is capable of valid nonlinearity suppression and is able to provide a better SNR performance even in a large frequency range. The proposed scheme is proved to be effective and easily implemented for real time photonic applications.

  3. Improved slow-light performance of 10 Gb/s NRZ, PSBT and DPSK signals in fiber broadband SBS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yi, Lilin; Jaouen, Yves; Hu, Weisheng; Su, Yikai; Bigo, Sébastien

    2007-12-10

    We have demonstrated error-free operations of slow-light via stimulated Brillouin scattering (SBS) in optical fiber for 10-Gb/s signals with different modulation formats, including non-return-to-zero (NRZ), phase-shaped binary transmission (PSBT) and differential phase-shiftkeying (DPSK). The SBS gain bandwidth is broadened by using current noise modulation of the pump laser diode. The gain shape is simply controlled by the noise density function. Super-Gaussian noise modulation of the Brillouin pump allows a flat-top and sharp-edge SBS gain spectrum, which can reduce slow-light induced distortion in case of 10-Gb/s NRZ signal. The corresponding maximal delay-time with error-free operation is 35 ps. Then we propose the PSBT format to minimize distortions resulting from SBS filtering effect and dispersion accompanied with slow light because of its high spectral efficiency and strong dispersion tolerance. The sensitivity of the 10-Gb/s PSBT signal is 5.2 dB better than the NRZ case with a same 35-ps delay. The maximal delay of 51 ps with error-free operation has been achieved. Futhermore, the DPSK format is directly demodulated through a Gaussian-shaped SBS gain, which is achieved using Gaussian-noise modulation of the Brillouin pump. The maximal error-free time delay after demodulation of a 10-Gb/s DPSK signal is as high as 81.5 ps, which is the best demonstrated result for 10-Gb/s slow-light.

  4. Identification and Manipulation of a Novel Signaling Mechanism to Improve Articular Cartilage Restoration After Posttraumatic Joint Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-10-01

    collagen II (COL II). As a result, the newly-formed fibrocartilage has poor biomechanical properties and often evidences poor integration with the... fibrocartilage generation at the site of injury defines a new potential avenue of intervention in the field of cartilage restoration. We defined the...lysophosphatidic acid (LPA)-autotaxin (ATX; encoded by the ENPP2 gene) signaling axis as an important mediator of fibrocartilage formation both in vitro and in

  5. Rescreening for abnormal vaginal flora in pregnancy and re-treating with clindamycin vaginal cream significantly increases cure and improvement rates

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lamont, R F; Taylor-Robinson, D; Bassett, P

    2012-01-01

    We investigated 199 pregnant women with bacterial vaginosis (BV) who received clindamycin vaginal cream (CVC) for three days and compared with 205 women treated with placebo. The vaginal flora was assessed at each visit. At the second visit, 71% in the CVC group were cured/improved, compared...

  6. Addendum to the article: Misuse of null hypothesis significance testing: Would estimation of positive and negative predictive values improve certainty of chemical risk assessment?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bundschuh, Mirco; Newman, Michael C; Zubrod, Jochen P; Seitz, Frank; Rosenfeldt, Ricki R; Schulz, Ralf

    2015-03-01

    We argued recently that the positive predictive value (PPV) and the negative predictive value (NPV) are valuable metrics to include during null hypothesis significance testing: They inform the researcher about the probability of statistically significant and non-significant test outcomes actually being true. Although commonly misunderstood, a reported p value estimates only the probability of obtaining the results or more extreme results if the null hypothesis of no effect was true. Calculations of the more informative PPV and NPV require a priori estimate of the probability (R). The present document discusses challenges of estimating R.

  7. Endometrial signals improve embryo outcome: functional role of vascular endothelial growth factor isoforms on embryo development and implantation in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binder, N K; Evans, J; Gardner, D K; Salamonsen, L A; Hannan, N J

    2014-10-10

    fetal development. Western blot analysis revealed the presence of VEGF121 and 165 isoforms in human uterine fluid. Time-lapse microscopy analysis revealed that VEGF (n = 22) and VEGF121 (n = 23) treatment significantly reduced the preimplantation mouse embryo time to cavitation (P limb development (P development and implantation was only examined in the mouse. The absence or reduction in levels of VEGF during the preimplantation period likely affects key events during embryo development, implantation and placentation. The potential for improvement of clinical IVF outcomes by the addition of VEGF to human embryo culture media needs further investigation. This study was supported by a University of Melbourne Early Career Researcher Grant #601040, the NHMRC (L.A.S., Program grant #494802; Fellowship #1002028; N.J.H., Fellowship # 628927; J.E.; project grant #1047756) and L.A.S., Monash IVF Research and Education Foundation. N.K.B. was supported by an Australian Postgraduate Award. Work at PHI-MIMR Institute was also supported by the Victorian Government's Operational Infrastructure Support Program. There are no conflicts of interest to declare. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. Significant mobility improvement of amorphous In-Ga-Zn-O thin-film transistors annealed in a low temperature wet ambient environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jallorina, Michael Paul A.; Bermundo, Juan Paolo S.; Fujii, Mami N.; Ishikawa, Yasuaki; Uraoka, Yukiharu

    2018-05-01

    Transparent amorphous oxide semiconducting materials such as amorphous InGaZnO used in thin film transistors (TFTs) are typically annealed at temperatures higher than 250 °C to remove any defects present and improve the electrical characteristics of the device. Previous research has shown that low cost and low temperature methods improve the electrical characteristics of the TFT. With the aid of surface and bulk characterization techniques in comparison to the device characteristics, this work aims to elucidate further on the improvement mechanisms of wet and dry annealing ambients that affect the electrical characteristics of the device. Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry results show that despite outward diffusion of -H and -OH species, humid annealing ambients counteract outward diffusion of these species, leading to defect sites which can be passivated by the wet ambient. X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy results show that for devices annealed for only 30 min in a wet annealing environment, the concentration of metal-oxide bonds increased by as much as 21.8% and defects such as oxygen vacancies were reduced by as much as 18.2% compared to an unannealed device. Our work shows that due to the oxidizing power of water vapor, defects are reduced, and overall electrical characteristics are improved as evidenced with the 150 °C wet O2, 30 min annealed sample which exhibited the highest mobility of 5.00 cm2/V s, compared to 2.36 cm2/V s for a sample that was annealed at 150 °C in a dry ambient atmospheric environment for 2 h.

  9. Improving signal to noise in labeled biological specimens using energy-filtered TEM of sections with a drift correction strategy and a direct detection device.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramachandra, Ranjan; Bouwer, James C; Mackey, Mason R; Bushong, Eric; Peltier, Steven T; Xuong, Nguyen-Huu; Ellisman, Mark H

    2014-06-01

    Energy filtered transmission electron microscopy techniques are regularly used to build elemental maps of spatially distributed nanoparticles in materials and biological specimens. When working with thick biological sections, electron energy loss spectroscopy techniques involving core-loss electrons often require exposures exceeding several minutes to provide sufficient signal to noise. Image quality with these long exposures is often compromised by specimen drift, which results in blurring and reduced resolution. To mitigate drift artifacts, a series of short exposure images can be acquired, aligned, and merged to form a single image. For samples where the target elements have extremely low signal yields, the use of charge coupled device (CCD)-based detectors for this purpose can be problematic. At short acquisition times, the images produced by CCDs can be noisy and may contain fixed pattern artifacts that impact subsequent correlative alignment. Here we report on the use of direct electron detection devices (DDD's) to increase the signal to noise as compared with CCD's. A 3× improvement in signal is reported with a DDD versus a comparably formatted CCD, with equivalent dose on each detector. With the fast rolling-readout design of the DDD, the duty cycle provides a major benefit, as there is no dead time between successive frames.

  10. Improving the signal visibility of optical-disk-drive sensors by analyte patterning and frequency-domain analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schaefer, S; Chau, K J

    2011-01-01

    One limitation of using compact disks (CDs) and optical disk drives for sensing and imaging of analytes placed on a CD is the fluctuations in the voltage signal from the disk drive generated while reading the data on the CD. In this study, we develop a simple, low-cost strategy for sensing and identification using CDs and optical disk drives that spectrally separates contributions to the voltage signal caused by an analyte intentionally placed onto the CD and that caused by the underlying data on the CD. Analytes are printed onto a CD surface with fixed spatial periodicity. As the laser beam in an optical disk drive scans over the section of the CD containing the analyte pattern, the intensity of the laser beam incident onto the photodiode integrated into the disk drive is modulated at a frequency dependent on the spatial periodicity of the analyte pattern and the speed of the optical-disk-drive motor. Fourier transformation of the voltage signal from the optical disk drive yields peaks in the frequency spectrum with amplitudes and locations that enable analyte sensing and identification, respectively. We study the influence of analyte area coverage, pattern periodicity, and CD rotational frequency on the peaks in the frequency spectrum associated with the patterned analyte. We apply this technique to discriminate differently-colored analytes, perform trigger-free detection of multiple analytes distributed on a single CD, and detect at least two different, overlapped analyte patterns on a single CD. The extension of this technique for sensing and identification of colorimetric chemical reagents is discussed

  11. Improving the Comprehension of Students with Significant Developmental Disabilities: Systematic Instruction on the Steps for Completing and Using a Graphic Organizer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Britt, Alexander P.

    2015-01-01

    A single-subject, multiple-baseline across participants design was used to examine the functional relation between systematic instruction and the ability to complete a graphic organizer and recall facts about informational texts by students with significant development disabilities. Four high school students enrolled in an adapted academic program…

  12. Significantly improved photovoltaic performance in polymer bulk heterojunction solar cells with graphene oxide /PEDOT:PSS double decked hole transport layer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rafique, Saqib; Abdullah, Shahino Mah; Shahid, Muhammad Mehmood; Ansari, Mohammad Omaish; Sulaiman, Khaulah

    2017-01-13

    This work demonstrates the high performance graphene oxide (GO)/PEDOT:PSS doubled decked hole transport layer (HTL) in the PCDTBT:PC 71 BM based bulk heterojunction organic photovoltaic device. The devices were tested on merits of their power conversion efficiency (PCE), reproducibility, stability and further compared with the devices with individual GO or PEDOT:PSS HTLs. Solar cells employing GO/PEDOT:PSS HTL yielded a PCE of 4.28% as compared to either of individual GO or PEDOT:PSS HTLs where they demonstrated PCEs of 2.77 and 3.57%, respectively. In case of single GO HTL, an inhomogeneous coating of ITO caused the poor performance whereas PEDOT:PSS is known to be hygroscopic and acidic which upon direct contact with ITO reduced the device performance. The improvement in the photovoltaic performance is mainly ascribed to the increased charge carriers mobility, short circuit current, open circuit voltage, fill factor, and decreased series resistance. The well matched work function of GO and PEDOT:PSS is likely to facilitate the charge transportation and an overall reduction in the series resistance. Moreover, GO could effectively block the electrons due to its large band-gap of ~3.6 eV, leading to an increased shunt resistance. In addition, we also observed the improvement in the reproducibility and stability.

  13. Significantly improved photovoltaic performance in polymer bulk heterojunction solar cells with graphene oxide /PEDOT:PSS double decked hole transport layer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rafique, Saqib; Abdullah, Shahino Mah; Shahid, Muhammad Mehmood; Ansari, Mohammad Omaish; Sulaiman, Khaulah

    2017-01-01

    This work demonstrates the high performance graphene oxide (GO)/PEDOT:PSS doubled decked hole transport layer (HTL) in the PCDTBT:PC71BM based bulk heterojunction organic photovoltaic device. The devices were tested on merits of their power conversion efficiency (PCE), reproducibility, stability and further compared with the devices with individual GO or PEDOT:PSS HTLs. Solar cells employing GO/PEDOT:PSS HTL yielded a PCE of 4.28% as compared to either of individual GO or PEDOT:PSS HTLs where they demonstrated PCEs of 2.77 and 3.57%, respectively. In case of single GO HTL, an inhomogeneous coating of ITO caused the poor performance whereas PEDOT:PSS is known to be hygroscopic and acidic which upon direct contact with ITO reduced the device performance. The improvement in the photovoltaic performance is mainly ascribed to the increased charge carriers mobility, short circuit current, open circuit voltage, fill factor, and decreased series resistance. The well matched work function of GO and PEDOT:PSS is likely to facilitate the charge transportation and an overall reduction in the series resistance. Moreover, GO could effectively block the electrons due to its large band-gap of ~3.6 eV, leading to an increased shunt resistance. In addition, we also observed the improvement in the reproducibility and stability.

  14. Low-level radioactive waste from commercial nuclear reactors. Volume 1. Recommendations for technology developments with potential to significantly improve low-level radioactive waste management

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rodgers, B.R.; Jolley, R.L.

    1986-02-01

    The overall task of this program was to provide an assessment of currently available technology for treating commercial low-level radioactive waste (LLRW), to initiate development of a methodology for choosing one technology for a given application, and to identify research needed to improve current treatment techniques and decision methodology. The resulting report is issued in four volumes. Volume 1 provides an executive summary and a general introduction to the four-volume set, in addition to recommendations for research and development (R and D) for low-level radioactive waste (LLRW) treatment. Generic, long-range, and/or high-risk programs identified and prioritized as needed R and D in the LLRW field include: (1) systems analysis to develop decision methodology; (2) alternative processes for dismantling, decontaminating, and decommissioning; (3) ion exchange; (4) incinerator technology; (5) disposal technology; (6) demonstration of advanced technologies; (7) technical assistance; (8) below regulatory concern materials; (9) mechanical treatment techniques; (10) monitoring and analysis procedures; (11) radical process improvements; (12) physical, chemical, thermal, and biological processes; (13) fundamental chemistry; (14) interim storage; (15) modeling; and (16) information transfer. The several areas are discussed in detail

  15. Sesamol ameliorates high-fat and high-fructose induced cognitive defects via improving insulin signaling disruption in the central nervous system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zhigang; Sun, Yali; Qiao, Qinglian; Zhao, Tong; Zhang, Wentong; Ren, Bo; Liu, Qian; Liu, Xuebo

    2017-02-22

    Sesamol, a nutritional component from sesame, possesses antioxidant, lipid lowering and antidepressant activities. Nonetheless, few studies report its effects on high-energy-dense diet-induced cognitive loss. The present research aimed to elucidate the action of sesamol on high-fat and high-fructose (HFFD) "western"-diet-induced central nervous system insulin resistance and learning and memory impairment, and further determined the possible underlying mechanism. 3 month-old C57BL/6J mice were divided into 3 groups with/without sesamol in the drinking water (0.05%, w/v) and standard diet, HFFD, and HFFD with sesamol supplementation. Morris water maze tests demonstrated that sesamol improved HFFD-elicited learning and memory loss. Sesamol was also found to attenuate neuron damage in HFFD-fed mice. Importantly, sesamol treatment up-regulated brain insulin signaling by stimulating IRS-1/AKT as well as ERK/CREB/BDNF pathways; meanwhile it down-regulated neuronal death signaling GSK3β and JNK. Moreover, sesamol also normalized mRNA expressions of neurotrophins including BDNF and NT-3, as well as expressions of mitochondrial metabolic and biogenesis related genes Sirt1 and PGC1α. Consistently, sesamol also reversed high-glucose-induced oxidized cellular status, mitochondrial membrane potential loss, insulin signaling inhibition and cell death in SH-SY5Y neuronal cells. Taken together, the current study proved that sesamol reduced western-diet-induced cognitive defects in a mouse model by inhibiting insulin resistance, normalizing mitochondrial function and cell redox status, and improving IRS/AKT cell surviving and energy metabolism regulating signaling. This compelling evidence indicated that sesamol is a potential nutritional supplement to prevent unhealthy-diet-induced learning and memory loss.

  16. Tumor-selective replication herpes simplex virus-based technology significantly improves clinical detection and prognostication of viable circulating tumor cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhang, Wen; Bao, Li; Yang, Shaoxing

    2016-01-01

    Detection of circulating tumor cells remains a significant challenge due to their vast physical and biological heterogeneity. We developed a cell-surface-marker-independent technology based on telomerase-specific, replication-selective oncolytic herpes-simplex-virus-1 that targets telomerase......-reverse-transcriptase-positive cancer cells and expresses green-fluorescent-protein that identifies viable CTCs from a broad spectrum of malignancies. Our method recovered 75.5-87.2% of tumor cells spiked into healthy donor blood, as validated by different methods, including single cell sequencing. CTCs were detected in 59-100% of 326...

  17. In adenosine A2B knockouts acute treatment with inorganic nitrate improves glucose disposal, oxidative stress and AMPK signaling in the liver

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria ePeleli

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Rationale: Accumulating studies suggest that nitric oxide (NO deficiency and oxidative stress are central pathological mechanisms in type 2 diabetes. Recent findings demonstrate therapeutic effects by boosting a nitrate-nitrite-NO pathway, an alternative pathway for NO formation. This study aimed at investigating the acute effects of inorganic nitrate on glucose and insulin signaling in adenosine A2B receptor knockout mice (A2B-/-, a genetic model of impaired metabolic regulation.Methods: Acute effects of nitrate treatment were investigated in aged wild-type (WT and A2B-/- mice. One hour after injection with nitrate or placebo, metabolic regulation was evaluated by glucose and insulin tolerance tests. NADPH oxidase-mediated superoxide production and AMPK phosphorylation were measured in livers obtained from non-treated or glucose-treated mice, with or without prior nitrate injection. Plasma was used to determine insulin resistance (HOMA-IR and NO signaling.Results: A2B-/- displayed increased body weight, reduced glucose clearance and attenuated overall insulin responses compared with age-matched WT. Nitrate treatment increased circulating levels of nitrate, nitrite and cGMP in A2B-/-, and improved glucose clearance. In WT mice, however, nitrate treatment did not influence glucose clearance. HOMA-IR increased following glucose injection in A2B-/-, but remained at basal levels in mice pretreated with nitrate. NADPH oxidase activity in livers from A2B-/-, but not WT mice, was reduced by nitrate. Livers from A2B-/- displayed reduced AMPK phosphorylation compared with WT mice, and this was increased by nitrate treatment. Injection with the anti-diabetic agent metformin induced similar therapeutic effects in the A2B-/- as observed with nitrate. Conclusion: The A2B-/- mouse is a genetic model of metabolic syndrome. Acute treatment with nitrate improved the metabolic profile, at least partly via reduction in oxidative stress and improved AMPK signaling

  18. Combined use of hyperbaric and hypobaric ropivacaine significantly improves hemodynamic characteristics in spinal anesthesia for caesarean section: a prospective, double-blind, randomized, controlled study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ZheFeng Quan

    Full Text Available To observe the hemodynamic changes of parturients in the combined use of hyperbaric (4 mg and hypobaric (6 mg ropivacaine during spinal anesthesia for caesarean section in this randomized double-blind study.Parturients (n = 136 undergoing elective cesarean delivery were randomly and equally allocated to receive either combined hyperbaric and hypobaric ropivacaine (Group A or hyperbaric ropivacaine (Group B. Outcome measures were: hemodynamic characteristics, maximum height of sensory block, time to achieve T8 sensory blockade level, incidence of complications, Apgar scores at 1 and 5 min, and neonatal blood gas analysis.Group A had a lower level of sensory blockade (T6 [T6-T7] and longer time to achieve T8 sensory blockade level (8 ± 1.3 min than did patients in Group B (T3 [T2-T4] and 5 ± 1.0 min, respectively; P < 0.001, both. The incidence rates for hypotension, nausea, and vomiting were significantly lower in Group A (13%, 10%, and 3%, respectively than Group B (66%, 31%, and 13%; P < 0.001, P = 0.003, P = 0.028.Combined use of hyperbaric (4 mg and hypobaric (6 mg ropivacaine significantly decreased the incidences of hypotension and complications in spinal anesthesia for caesarean section by extending induction time and decreasing the level of sensory blockade.Chinese Clinical Trial Register ChiCTR-TRC-13004622.

  19. Regional improvement of signal-to-noise and contrast-to-noise ratios in dual-screen CR chest imaging - a phantom study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu Xinming; Shaw, Chris C.

    2001-01-01

    The improvement of signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR) in dual-screen computed radiography (CR) has been investigated for various regions in images of an anthropomorphic chest phantom. With the dual-screen CR technique, two image plates are placed in a cassette and exposed together during imaging. The exposed plates are separately scanned to form a front image and a back image, which are then registered and superimposed to form a composite image with improved SNRs and CNRs. The improvement can be optimized by applying specifically selected weighting factors during superimposition. In this study, dual-screen CR images of an anthropomorphic chest phantom were acquired and formed with four different combinations of standard resolution (ST) and high-resolution (HR) screens: ST-ST, ST-HR, HR-ST, and HR-HR. SNRs and their improvements were measured and compared over twelve representative regions-of-interest (ROIs) in these images. A 19.1%-45.7% increase of the SNR was observed, depending on the ROI and screen combination used. The optimal weighting factors were found to vary by only 4.5%-12.4%. Largest improvement was found in the lung field for all screen combinations. Improvement of CNRs was investigated over two ROIs in the lung field using the rib bones as the contrast objects and a 29.2%-43.9% improvement of the CNR was observed. Among the four screen combinations, ST-ST resulted in the most SNR and CNR improvement, followed in order by HR-ST, HR-HR, and ST-HR. The HR-ST combination yielded the lowest spatial variation of the optimal weighting factors with improved SNRs and CNRs close to those of the ST-ST combination

  20. Disruption of the 5S RNP-Mdm2 interaction significantly improves the erythroid defect in a mouse model for Diamond-Blackfan anemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaako, P; Debnath, S; Olsson, K; Zhang, Y; Flygare, J; Lindström, M S; Bryder, D; Karlsson, S

    2015-11-01

    Diamond-Blackfan anemia (DBA) is a congenital erythroid hypoplasia caused by haploinsufficiency of genes encoding ribosomal proteins (RPs). Perturbed ribosome biogenesis in DBA has been shown to induce a p53-mediated ribosomal stress response. However, the mechanisms of p53 activation and its relevance for the erythroid defect remain elusive. Previous studies have indicated that activation of p53 is caused by the inhibition of mouse double minute 2 (Mdm2), the main negative regulator of p53, by the 5S ribonucleoprotein particle (RNP). Meanwhile, it is not clear whether this mechanism solely mediates the p53-dependent component found in DBA. To approach this question, we crossed our mouse model for RPS19-deficient DBA with Mdm2(C305F) knock-in mice that have a disrupted 5S RNP-Mdm2 interaction. Upon induction of the Rps19 deficiency, Mdm2(C305F) reversed the p53 response and improved expansion of hematopoietic progenitors in vitro, and ameliorated the anemia in vivo. Unexpectedly, disruption of the 5S RNP-Mdm2 interaction also led to selective defect in erythropoiesis. Our findings highlight the sensitivity of erythroid progenitor cells to aberrations in p53 homeostasis mediated by the 5S RNP-Mdm2 interaction. Finally, we provide evidence indicating that physiological activation of the 5S RNP-Mdm2-p53 pathway may contribute to functional decline of the hematopoietic system in a cell-autonomous manner over time.

  1. Cognitive cooperation groups mediated by computers and internet present significant improvement of cognitive status in older adults with memory complaints: a controlled prospective study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo de Rosso Krug

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Objective To estimate the effect of participating in cognitive cooperation groups, mediated by computers and the internet, on the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE percent variation of outpatients with memory complaints attending two memory clinics. Methods A prospective controlled intervention study carried out from 2006 to 2013 with 293 elders. The intervention group (n = 160 attended a cognitive cooperation group (20 sessions of 1.5 hours each. The control group (n = 133 received routine medical care. Outcome was the percent variation in the MMSE. Control variables included gender, age, marital status, schooling, hypertension, diabetes, dyslipidaemia, hypothyroidism, depression, vascular diseases, polymedication, use of benzodiazepines, exposure to tobacco, sedentary lifestyle, obesity and functional capacity. The final model was obtained by multivariate linear regression. Results The intervention group obtained an independent positive variation of 24.39% (CI 95% = 14.86/33.91 in the MMSE compared to the control group. Conclusion The results suggested that cognitive cooperation groups, mediated by computers and the internet, are associated with cognitive status improvement of older adults in memory clinics.

  2. Significantly improved surface morphology of N-polar GaN film grown on SiC substrate by the optimization of V/III ratio

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Gaoqiang; Zhang, Yuantao; Yu, Ye; Yan, Long; Li, Pengchong; Han, Xu; Chen, Liang; Zhao, Degang; Du, Guotong

    2018-04-01

    In this paper, N-polar GaN films with different V/III ratios were grown on vicinal C-face SiC substrates by metalorganic chemical vapor deposition. During the growth of N-polar GaN film, the V/III ratio was controlled by adjusting the molar flow rate of ammonia while keeping the trimethylgallium flow rate unchanged. The influence of the V/III ratio on the surface morphology of N-polar GaN film has been studied. We find that the surface root mean square roughness of N-polar GaN film over an area of 20 × 20 μm2 can be reduced from 8.13 to 2.78 nm by optimization of the V/III ratio. Then, using the same growth conditions, N-polar InGaN/GaN multiple quantum wells (MQWs) light-emitting diodes (LEDs) were grown on the rough and the smooth N-polar GaN templates, respectively. Compared with the LED grown on the rough N-polar GaN template, dramatically improved interface sharpness and luminescence uniformity of the InGaN/GaN MQWs are achieved for the LED grown on the smooth N-polar GaN template.

  3. A clinically based prognostic index for diffuse large B-cell lymphoma with a cut-off at 70 years of age significantly improves prognostic stratification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gang, Anne O.; Pedersen, Michael; d'Amore, Francesco

    2015-01-01

    The introduction of rituximab and generally improved health among elderly patients have increased the survival of patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). The International Prognostic Index (IPI) from 1992 is based on pre-rituximab data from clinical trials including several lymphoma ...... dehydrogenase (LDH), stage and albumin level, and (2) a separate age-adjusted DLBCL-PI for patients 1 extranodal lesion, however excluding stage....... subtypes. We applied IPI factors to a population-based rituximab-treated cohort of 1990 patients diagnosed 2000-2010 and explored new factors and the optimal prognostic age cut-off for DLBCL. Multivariate-analyses (MVA) confirmed the prognostic value of all IPI factors except the presence of > 1 extranodal...... lesion. The optimal age cut-off was 70 years. In a MVA of albumin, lymphocyte count, sex, immunoglobulin G, bulky disease, hemoglobin and B-symptoms, only albumin was prognostic. We propose: (1) a modified DLBCL prognostic index (DLBCL-PI) including: age (70 years), performance status (PS), lactate...

  4. PolySearch2: a significantly improved text-mining system for discovering associations between human diseases, genes, drugs, metabolites, toxins and more.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yifeng; Liang, Yongjie; Wishart, David

    2015-07-01

    PolySearch2 (http://polysearch.ca) is an online text-mining system for identifying relationships between biomedical entities such as human diseases, genes, SNPs, proteins, drugs, metabolites, toxins, metabolic pathways, organs, tissues, subcellular organelles, positive health effects, negative health effects, drug actions, Gene Ontology terms, MeSH terms, ICD-10 medical codes, biological taxonomies and chemical taxonomies. PolySearch2 supports a generalized 'Given X, find all associated Ys' query, where X and Y can be selected from the aforementioned biomedical entities. An example query might be: 'Find all diseases associated with Bisphenol A'. To find its answers, PolySearch2 searches for associations against comprehensive collections of free-text collections, including local versions of MEDLINE abstracts, PubMed Central full-text articles, Wikipedia full-text articles and US Patent application abstracts. PolySearch2 also searches 14 widely used, text-rich biological databases such as UniProt, DrugBank and Human Metabolome Database to improve its accuracy and coverage. PolySearch2 maintains an extensive thesaurus of biological terms and exploits the latest search engine technology to rapidly retrieve relevant articles and databases records. PolySearch2 also generates, ranks and annotates associative candidates and present results with relevancy statistics and highlighted key sentences to facilitate user interpretation. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  5. Gemtuzumab Ozogamicin (GO Inclusion to Induction Chemotherapy Eliminates Leukemic Initiating Cells and Significantly Improves Survival in Mouse Models of Acute Myeloid Leukemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cathy C Zhang

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Gemtuzumab ozogamicin (GO is an anti-CD33 antibody-drug conjugate for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML. Although GO shows a narrow therapeutic window in early clinical studies, recent reports detailing a modified dosing regimen of GO can be safely combined with induction chemotherapy, and the combination provides significant survival benefits in AML patients. Here we tested whether the survival benefits seen with the combination arise from the enhanced reduction of chemoresidual disease and leukemic initiating cells (LICs. Herein, we use cell line and patient-derived xenograft (PDX AML models to evaluate the combination of GO with daunorubicin and cytarabine (DA induction chemotherapy on AML blast growth and animal survival. DA chemotherapy and GO as separate treatments reduced AML burden but left significant chemoresidual disease in multiple AML models. The combination of GO and DA chemotherapy eliminated nearly all AML burden and extended overall survival. In two small subsets of AML models, chemoresidual disease following DA chemotherapy displayed hallmark markers of leukemic LICs (CLL1 and CD34. In vivo, the two chemoresistant subpopulations (CLL1+/CD117− and CD34+/CD38+ showed higher ability to self-renewal than their counterpart subpopulations, respectively. CD33 was coexpressed in these functional LIC subpopulations. We demonstrate that the GO and DA induction chemotherapy combination more effectively eliminates LICs in AML PDX models than either single agent alone. These data suggest that the survival benefit seen by the combination of GO and induction chemotherapy, nonclinically and clinically, may be attributed to the enhanced reduction of LICs.

  6. Significant reduction of radiation exposure to operator and staff during cardiac interventions by analysis of radiation leakage and improved lead shielding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuon, Eberhard; Schmitt, Moritz; Dahm, Johannes B

    2002-01-01

    The objectives of this study were to disclose and to reduce occupational radiation leakage in invasive cardiology. Prospectively, we analyzed various dose parameters for 330 coronary procedures. We used a Rando phantom to measure scatter entrance skin air kerma to the operator (S-ESAK-O) during fluoroscopy for all standard tube angulations, and to plot isodose lines for 0 degrees /0 degrees -posterior anterior angulation. The patient's measured dose area product due to diagnostic catheterization and elective percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty was 6.2 and 10.4 Gycm(2), which represents 11% and 13% of currently typical values, respectively. With use of 0.5- and 1.0-mm overcouch and undercouch shielding, it was possible to reduce the mean of 4,686 nSv/Gycm(2) to 677 and 277 nSv/Gycm(2), respectively. Closure of radiation leakage up to 897 microSv/hour at the operator's gonadal height (80 to 105 cm), not heretofore described, was achieved by an additional 1.0-mm, lead-equivalent undercouch-top and overcouch-flap adjacent to the table, down to a S-ESAK-O/dose area product level of 47.5 nSv/Gycm(2). With use of a 0.5-mm lead apron, collar, glasses, foot-switch shield and 1.0-mm lead cover around the patient's thighs, the operator received a mean S-ESAK-O of 8.5, while his forehead, eyes, thyroid, chest, gonads, and hands were exposed to 68.2, 1.2, 1.2, 1.2, 0.8, and 58.2 nSv/Gycm(2), respectively. In conclusion, radiation-attenuating intervention techniques and improved lead protection can effectively contribute to a new state of the art in invasive cardiology, with reduction of operator radiation exposure to 0.8% of typical S-ESAK-O levels in advanced catheterization laboratories.

  7. A new optical method improves fluorescence guided diagnosis of bladder tumor in the outpatient department and reveals significant photo bleaching problems in established inpatients PDD techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindvold, Lars R.; Hermann, Gregers G.

    2013-03-01

    Photo dynamic diagnosis (PDD) is a convenient and well-documented procedure for diagnosis of bladder cancer and tumours using endoscopic techniques. At present, this procedure is available only for routine use in an operating room (OR) and often with substantial photobleaching effects of the photosensitizer. We present a novel optical design of the endoscopic PDD procedure that allows the procedure to be performed in the outpatient department (OPD) and not only in the OR. Thereby, inpatient procedures lasting 1-2 days may be replaced by a few hours lasting procedure in the OPD. Urine blurs the fluorescence during PDD used in the OPD. Urine contains fluorescent metabolites that are excited by blue light giving an opaque green fluorescence confounding the desired red fluorescence (PDD) from the tumour tissue. Measurements from the clinical situation has shown that some systems for PPD based on blue light illumination (PDD mode) and white light illumination used for bladder tumour diagnosis and surgery suffers some inherent disadvantages, i.e., photo bleaching in white light that impairs the possibility for PDD as white light usually is used before the blue light for PDD. Based on spectroscopic observations of urine and the photoactive dye Protoporphyrin IX used in PDD a novel optical system for use with the cystoscope has been devised that solves the problem of green fluorescence from urine. This and the knowledge of photo-bleaching pitfalls in established systems make it possible to perform PDD of bladder tumours in the OPD and to improve PDD in the OR.

  8. Activation of IGF-1/IGFBP-3 signaling by berberine improves intestinal mucosal barrier of rats with acute endotoxemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Yan; Yuan, Xiaoming; Zhou, Guangrong; Feng, Aiwen

    2018-01-01

    Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) and binding protein 3 (IGFBP-3) play a role in the maintenance of gut mucosal barrier function. Nevertheless, IGF-I/IGFBP-3 and tight junction protein (TJP) expression in small intestinal mucosa are often impaired during endotoxemia. In this model of acute endotoxemia, the regulatory effect of berberine on IGF-I/IGFBP-3 and TJP expression in ileal mucosa was evaluated. The findings revealed systemic injection of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) suppressed mRNA and protein expression of IGF-I and IGFBP-3, but berberine ameliorated their production. LPS injection inhibited occludin and claudin-1 protein generation, and this inhibitory effect of LPS was abolished by berberine. Inhibition of IGF-I/IGFBP-3 signaling by AG1024 or siRNAs reduced berberine-induced occludin and claudin-1 production. Additionally, GW9662 was found to repress berberine-induced IGF-I/IGFBP-3 expression, indicating of a cross-link between PPARγ and IGF-I/IGFBP-3 axis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Overexpression of AtABCG25 enhances the abscisic acid signal in guard cells and improves plant water use efficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuromori, Takashi; Fujita, Miki; Urano, Kaoru; Tanabata, Takanari; Sugimoto, Eriko; Shinozaki, Kazuo

    2016-10-01

    In addition to improving drought tolerance, improvement of water use efficiency is a major challenge in plant physiology. Due to their trade-off relationships, it is generally considered that achieving stress tolerance is incompatible with maintaining stable growth. Abscisic acid (ABA) is a key phytohormone that regulates the balance between intrinsic growth and environmental responses. Previously, we identified AtABCG25 as a cell-membrane ABA transporter that export ABA from the inside to the outside of cells. AtABCG25-overexpressing plants showed a lower transpiration phenotype without any growth retardation. Here, we dissected this useful trait using precise phenotyping approaches. AtABCG25 overexpression stimulated a local ABA response in guard cells. Furthermore, AtABCG25 overexpression enhanced drought tolerance, probably resulting from maintenance of water contents over the common threshold for survival after drought stress treatment. Finally, we observed enhanced water use efficiency by overexpression of AtABCG25, in addition to drought tolerance. These results were consistent with the function of AtABCG25 as an ABA efflux transporter. This unique trait may be generally useful for improving the water use efficiency and drought tolerance of plants. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Improving lifetime trajectories for vulnerable young children and families living with significant stress and social disadvantage: the early years education program randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordan, Brigid; Tseng, Yi-Ping; Coombs, Nichola; Kennedy, Anne; Borland, Jeff

    2014-09-17

    Children who experience neglect and abuse are likely to have impaired brain development and entrenched learning deficiencies. Early years interventions such as intensive education and care for these children are known to have the potential to increase their human capital. The Early Years Education Program (EYEP) is a new program offered by the Children's Protection Society (CPS) in Melbourne, Australia. EYEP is targeted at the needs of children who have been or are at risk of being abused or neglected. It has the dual focus of seeking to address the consequences of abuse and neglect on children's brain development and redressing their learning deficiencies. Our objective is to determine whether EYEP can improve school readiness by conducting a randomised controlled trial (RCT) of its impacts. The RCT is being conducted with 90 participants (45 intervention and 45 control). Eligible children must be aged under three years and assessed as having two or more risk factors as defined in the Department of Human Services Best Interest Case Practice Model. The intervention group participate for three years (or until school entry) in EYEP. The trial does not provide any early years education or care to the control group. Data are being collected on outcome measures for participants in EYEP and the control group at the baseline, at yearly intervals for three years, and six months after commencing the first year of school. Outcome measures encompass children's health and development, academic ability and emotional and behavioural regulation; and quality of parenting practices. The study will evaluate the impact of EYEP on these outcomes, and undertake a benefit-cost analysis of the program. Findings from the study have the potential to influence the quality of care and education for the large population of children in Australia who are at risk of abuse and neglect, as well as for children in mainstream childcare. The study will provide up-to-date evidence on the impact of an

  11. Physicochemical state of the nanotopographic surface of commercially pure titanium following anodization-hydrothermal treatment reveals significantly improved hydrophilicity and surface energy profiles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takebe, Jun; Ito, Shigeki; Miura, Shingo; Miyata, Kyohei; Ishibashi, Kanji

    2012-01-01

    A method of coating commercially pure titanium (cpTi) implants with a highly crystalline, thin hydroxyapatite (HA) layer using discharge anodic oxidation followed by hydrothermal treatment (Spark discharged Anodic oxidation treatment ; SA-treated cpTi) has been reported for use in clinical dentistry. We hypothesized that a thin HA layer with high crystallinity and nanostructured anodic titanium oxide film on such SA-treated cpTi implant surfaces might be a crucial function of their surface-specific potential energy. To test this, we analyzed anodic oxide (AO) cpTi and SA-treated cpTi disks by SEM and AFM. Contact angles and surface free energy of each disk surface was measured using FAMAS software. High-magnification SEM and AFM revealed the nanotopographic structure of the anodic titanium oxide film on SA-treated cpTi; however, this was not observed on the AO cpTi surface. The contact angle and surface free energy measurements were also significantly different between AO cpTi and SA-treated cpTi surfaces (Tukey's, P<0.05). These data indicated that the change of physicochemical properties of an anodic titanium oxide film with HA crystals on an SA-treated cpTi surface may play a key role in the phenomenon of osteoconduction during the process of osseointegration. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Combined use of hyperbaric and hypobaric ropivacaine significantly improves hemodynamic characteristics in spinal anesthesia for caesarean section: a prospective, double-blind, randomized, controlled study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quan, ZheFeng; Tian, Ming; Chi, Ping; Li, Xin; He, HaiLi; Luo, Chao

    2015-01-01

    To observe the hemodynamic changes of parturients in the combined use of hyperbaric (4 mg) and hypobaric (6 mg) ropivacaine during spinal anesthesia for caesarean section in this randomized double-blind study. Parturients (n = 136) undergoing elective cesarean delivery were randomly and equally allocated to receive either combined hyperbaric and hypobaric ropivacaine (Group A) or hyperbaric ropivacaine (Group B). Outcome measures were: hemodynamic characteristics, maximum height of sensory block, time to achieve T8 sensory blockade level, incidence of complications, Apgar scores at 1 and 5 min, and neonatal blood gas analysis. Group A had a lower level of sensory blockade (T6 [T6-T7]) and longer time to achieve T8 sensory blockade level (8 ± 1.3 min) than did patients in Group B (T3 [T2-T4] and 5 ± 1.0 min, respectively; P hyperbaric (4 mg) and hypobaric (6 mg) ropivacaine significantly decreased the incidences of hypotension and complications in spinal anesthesia for caesarean section by extending induction time and decreasing the level of sensory blockade. Chinese Clinical Trial Register ChiCTR-TRC-13004622.

  13. Multimeric recombinant M2e protein-based ELISA: a significant improvement in differentiating avian influenza infected chickens from vaccinated ones.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farshid Hadifar

    Full Text Available Killed avian influenza virus (AIV vaccines have been used to control H5N1 infections in countries where the virus is endemic. Distinguishing vaccinated from naturally infected birds (DIVA in such situations however, has become a major challenge. Recently, we introduced the recombinant ectodomain of the M2 protein (M2e of H5N1 subtype as a novel tool for an ELISA based DIVA test. Despite being antigenic in natural infection the monomer form of the M2e used in ELISA had limited antigenicity and consequently poor diagnostic capability. To address this shortcoming, we evaluated the use of four tandem copies of M2e (tM2e for increased efficiency of M2e antibody detection. The tM2e gene of H5N1 strain from Indonesia (A/Indonesia/CDC540/2006 was cloned into a pMAL- p4x expression vector and expressed in E.coli as a recombinant tM2e-MBP or M2e-MBP proteins. Both of these, M2e and tM2e antigens reacted with sera obtained from chickens following live H5N1 infection but not with sera from vaccinated birds. A significantly stronger M2e antibody reaction was observed with the tM2e compared to M2e antigen. Western blotting also supported the superiority of tM2e over M2e in detection of specific M2e antibodies against live H5N1 infection. Results from this study demonstrate that M2e tetramer is a better antigen than single M2e and could be more suitable for an ELISA based DIVA test.

  14. Improving sensitivity of linear regression-based cell type-specific differential expression deconvolution with per-gene vs. global significance threshold.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glass, Edmund R; Dozmorov, Mikhail G

    2016-10-06

    The goal of many human disease-oriented studies is to detect molecular mechanisms different between healthy controls and patients. Yet, commonly used gene expression measurements from blood samples suffer from variability of cell composition. This variability hinders the detection of differentially expressed genes and is often ignored. Combined with cell counts, heterogeneous gene expression may provide deeper insights into the gene expression differences on the cell type-specific level. Published computational methods use linear regression to estimate cell type-specific differential expression, and a global cutoff to judge significance, such as False Discovery Rate (FDR). Yet, they do not consider many artifacts hidden in high-dimensional gene expression data that may negatively affect linear regression. In this paper we quantify the parameter space affecting the performance of linear regression (sensitivity of cell type-specific differential expression detection) on a per-gene basis. We evaluated the effect of sample sizes, cell type-specific proportion variability, and mean squared error on sensitivity of cell type-specific differential expression detection using linear regression. Each parameter affected variability of cell type-specific expression estimates and, subsequently, the sensitivity of differential expression detection. We provide the R package, LRCDE, which performs linear regression-based cell type-specific differential expression (deconvolution) detection on a gene-by-gene basis. Accounting for variability around cell type-specific gene expression estimates, it computes per-gene t-statistics of differential detection, p-values, t-statistic-based sensitivity, group-specific mean squared error, and several gene-specific diagnostic metrics. The sensitivity of linear regression-based cell type-specific differential expression detection differed for each gene as a function of mean squared error, per group sample sizes, and variability of the proportions

  15. Kinetics of improved 1,4-alpha-D-glucan glucohydrolase biosynthesis from a newly isolated Aspergillus oryzae IIB-6 and parameter significance analysis by 2-factorial design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fatima, Bilqees; Ali, Sikander

    2012-01-01

    Sixteen different mould cultures viz. Aspergillus, Alternaria, Arthroderma, Trichoderma, Fusarium, Penicillium, Rhizopus and Chochliobolus were isolated from the soil samples of Qatar by serial dilution method. The preliminary screening of isolates was done by selecting initial colonies showing relatively bigger zones of starch hydrolysis on nutrient agar plates. The isolates were then subjected to secondary screening by submerged fermentation (SmF). The 1,4-α-D-glucan glucohydrolase (GGH) activity ranged from 1.906-12.675 U/ml/min. The product yield was analysed in dependence of mycelial morphology, biomass level and protein content. The isolate Aspergillus oryzae llB-6 which gave maximum enzyme production was incubated in M3 medium containing 20 g/l starch, 10 g/l lactose, 8.5 g/l yeast extract, 6 g/l corn steep liquor (CSL), 1.2 g/l MgSO4.7H2O, 1.3 g/l NH4Cl, 0.6 g/l CaCl2.2H2O, pH 5 at 30±2°C and 200 rpm. On the basis of kinetic variables, notably Qp (0.058±0.01(a) U/g/h), Yp/s (0.308±0.03(ab) U/g) and qp (0.210±0.032(abc) U/g fungal biomass/h), A. oryzae IIB-6 was found to be a hyper producer of GGH (LSD 0.0345) compared to A. kawachii IIB-2. A noticeable enhancement in enzyme activity of over 30% was observed (13.917±1.01 U/ml/min) when the process parameters viz. cultural conditions (pH 5, incubation period 72 h) and nutritional requirements (6 g/l CSL, 9.5 g/l yeast extract, 10 g/l starch, 20 g/l lactose) were further optimized using a 2-factorial Plackett-Burman design. The model terms were found to be highly significant (HS, p≤0.05), indicating the potential utility of the culture (dof~3).

  16. MicroRNA-486–dependent modulation of DOCK3/PTEN/AKT signaling pathways improves muscular dystrophy–associated symptoms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexander, Matthew S.; Casar, Juan Carlos; Motohashi, Norio; Vieira, Natássia M.; Eisenberg, Iris; Marshall, Jamie L.; Gasperini, Molly J.; Lek, Angela; Myers, Jennifer A.; Estrella, Elicia A.; Kang, Peter B.; Shapiro, Frederic; Rahimov, Fedik; Kawahara, Genri; Widrick, Jeffrey J.; Kunkel, Louis M.

    2014-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by mutations in the gene encoding dystrophin, which results in dysfunctional signaling pathways within muscle. Previously, we identified microRNA-486 (miR-486) as a muscle-enriched microRNA that is markedly reduced in the muscles of dystrophin-deficient mice (Dmdmdx-5Cv mice) and in DMD patient muscles. Here, we determined that muscle-specific transgenic overexpression of miR-486 in muscle of Dmdmdx-5Cv mice results in reduced serum creatine kinase levels, improved sarcolemmal integrity, fewer centralized myonuclei, increased myofiber size, and improved muscle physiology and performance. Additionally, we identified dedicator of cytokinesis 3 (DOCK3) as a miR-486 target in skeletal muscle and determined that DOCK3 expression is induced in dystrophic muscles. DOCK3 overexpression in human myotubes modulated PTEN/AKT signaling, which regulates muscle hypertrophy and growth, and induced apoptosis. Furthermore, several components of the PTEN/AKT pathway were markedly modulated by miR-486 in dystrophin-deficient muscle. Skeletal muscle–specific miR-486 overexpression in Dmdmdx-5Cv animals decreased levels of DOCK3, reduced PTEN expression, and subsequently increased levels of phosphorylated AKT, which resulted in an overall beneficial effect. Together, these studies demonstrate that stable overexpression of miR-486 ameliorates the disease progression of dystrophin-deficient skeletal muscle. PMID:24789910

  17. Improvement of a predictive model of castration-resistant prostate cancer: functional genetic variants in TGFβ1 signaling pathway modulation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana L Teixeira

    Full Text Available Prostate cancer (PC is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in men. The acquisition of castration-resistant (CR phenotype is associated with the activation of signaling pathways mediated by growth factors. The TGFβ1 and its receptors have an important role in tumor progression, being the pro-apoptotic function modulated by the expression of TGFBR2. A single nucleotide polymorphism -875 G > A in TGFBR2 gene has been described, which may influence the expression levels of the receptor. Our purpose was to investigate the potential role of TGFBR2-875G>A in PC risk and in the response to androgen deprivation therapy (ADT. TGFBR2-875G>A polymorphism was studied by allelic discrimination using real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR in 891 patients with PC and 874 controls. A follow-up study was undertaken to evaluate response to ADT. The TGFBR2 and SMAD7 mRNA expression were analyzed by a quantitative real-time PCR. We found that TGFBR2-875GG homozygous patients present lower expression levels of TGFBR2 mRNA (AA/AG: 2(-ΔΔCT =1.5, P=0.016. GG genotype was also associated with higher Gleason grade (OR=1.51, P=0.019 and increased risk of an early relapse after ADT (HR=1.47, P=0.024. The concordance (c index analysis showed that the definition of profiles that contains information regarding tumor characteristics associated with genetic information present an increased capacity to predict the risk for CR development (c-index model 1: 0.683 vs model 2: 0.736 vs model 3: 0.746 vs model 4: 0.759. The TGFBR2-875G>A contribution to an early relapse in ADT patients, due to changes in mRNA expression, supports the involvement of TGFβ1 pathway in CRPC. Furthermore, according to our results, we hypothesize the potential benefits of the association of genetic information in predictive models of CR development.

  18. Repletion of branched chain amino acids reverses mTORC1 signaling but not improved metabolism during dietary protein dilution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maida, Adriano; Chan, Jessica S K; Sjøberg, Kim Anker

    2017-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Dietary protein dilution (PD) has been associated with metabolic advantages such as improved glucose homeostasis and increased energy expenditure. This phenotype involves liver-induced release of FGF21 in response to amino acid insufficiency; however, it has remained unclear whether...... dietary dilution of specific amino acids (AAs) is also required. Circulating branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) are sensitive to protein intake, elevated in the serum of obese humans and mice and thought to promote insulin resistance. We tested whether replenishment of dietary BCAAs to an AA-diluted (AAD......) diet is sufficient to reverse the glucoregulatory benefits of dietary PD. METHODS: We conducted AA profiling of serum from healthy humans and lean and high fat-fed or New Zealand obese (NZO) mice following dietary PD. We fed wildtype and NZO mice one of three amino acid defined diets: control, total...

  19. Improved Phytophthora resistance in commercial chickpea (Cicer arietinum) varieties negatively impacts symbiotic gene signalling and symbiotic potential in some varieties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plett, Jonathan M; Plett, Krista L; Bithell, Sean L; Mitchell, Chris; Moore, Kevin; Powell, Jeff R; Anderson, Ian C

    2016-08-01

    Breeding disease-resistant varieties is one of the most effective and economical means to combat soilborne diseases in pulse crops. Commonalities between pathogenic and mutualistic microbe colonization strategies, however, raises the concern that reduced susceptibility to pathogens may simultaneously reduce colonization by beneficial microbes. We investigate here the degree of overlap in the transcriptional response of the Phytophthora medicaginis susceptible chickpea variety 'Sonali' to the early colonization stages of either Phytophthora, rhizobial bacteria or arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. From a total of 6476 genes differentially expressed in Sonali roots during colonization by any of the microbes tested, 10.2% were regulated in a similar manner regardless of whether it was the pathogenic oomycete or a mutualistic microbe colonizing the roots. Of these genes, 49.7% were oppositely regulated under the same conditions in the moderately Phytophthora resistant chickpea variety 'PBA HatTrick'. Chickpea varieties with improved resistance to Phytophthora also displayed lower colonization by rhizobial bacteria and mycorrhizal fungi leading to an increased reliance on N and P from soil. Together, our results suggest that marker-based breeding in crops such as chickpea should be further investigated such that plant disease resistance can be tailored to a specific pathogen without affecting mutualistic plant:microbe interactions. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Significant improvement of electrochemical performance of Cu ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    LiVPO4F cathode material for lithium-ion batteries. YU ZHANGa,∗, XIAOLAN BAIb ... and energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS). ... Analysis of electrochemical impedance spectra (EIS) ... studied with a SEM (JSM-7500F, Japan) equipped with.

  1. Bushen Huoxue Attenuates Diabetes-Induced Cognitive Impairment by Improvement of Cerebral Microcirculation: Involvement of RhoA/ROCK/moesin and Src Signaling Pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuan Li

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Type 2 Diabetes mellitus (T2DM is closely correlated with cognitive impairment and neurodegenerative disease. Bushen Huoxue (BSHX is a compound Chinese medicine used clinically to treat diabetes-induced cognitive impairment. However, its underlying mechanisms remain unclear. In the present study, KKAy mice, a genetic model of type 2 diabetes with obesity and insulin resistant hyperglycemia, received a daily administration of BSHX for 12 weeks. Blood glucose was measured every 4 weeks. After 12 weeks, BSHX treatment significantly ameliorated the T2DM related insults, including the increased blood glucose, the impaired spatial memory, decreased cerebral blood flow (CBF, occurrence of albumin leakage, leukocyte adhesion and opening capillary rarefaction. Meanwhile, the downregulation of the tight junction proteins (TJ claudin-5, occludin, zonula occluden-1 (ZO-1 and JAM-1 between endothelial cells, amyloid-β (Aβ accumulation in hippocampus, increased AGEs and RAGE, and expression of RhoA/ROCK/moesin signaling pathway and phosphorylation of Src kinase in KKAy mice were significantly protected by BSHX treatment. These results indicate that the protective effect of BSHX on T2DM-induced cognitive impairment involves regulation of RhoA/ROCK1/moesin signaling pathway and phosphorylation of Src kinase.

  2. Improved signal to noise ratio and sensitivity of an infrared imaging video bolometer on large helical device by using an infrared periscope

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pandya, Shwetang N.; Sano, Ryuichi; Peterson, Byron J.; Mukai, Kiyofumi; Enokuchi, Akito; Takeyama, Norihide

    2014-01-01

    An Infrared imaging Video Bolometer (IRVB) diagnostic is currently being used in the Large Helical Device (LHD) for studying the localization of radiation structures near the magnetic island and helical divertor X-points during plasma detachment and for 3D tomography. This research demands high signal to noise ratio (SNR) and sensitivity to improve the temporal resolution for studying the evolution of radiation structures during plasma detachment and a wide IRVB field of view (FoV) for tomography. Introduction of an infrared periscope allows achievement of a higher SNR and higher sensitivity, which in turn, permits a twofold improvement in the temporal resolution of the diagnostic. Higher SNR along with wide FoV is achieved simultaneously by reducing the separation of the IRVB detector (metal foil) from the bolometer's aperture and the LHD plasma. Altering the distances to meet the aforesaid requirements results in an increased separation between the foil and the IR camera. This leads to a degradation of the diagnostic performance in terms of its sensitivity by 1.5-fold. Using an infrared periscope to image the IRVB foil results in a 7.5-fold increase in the number of IR camera pixels imaging the foil. This improves the IRVB sensitivity which depends on the square root of the number of IR camera pixels being averaged per bolometer channel. Despite the slower f-number (f/# = 1.35) and reduced transmission (τ 0 = 89%, due to an increased number of lens elements) for the periscope, the diagnostic with an infrared periscope operational on LHD has improved in terms of sensitivity and SNR by a factor of 1.4 and 4.5, respectively, as compared to the original diagnostic without a periscope (i.e., IRVB foil being directly imaged by the IR camera through conventional optics). The bolometer's field of view has also increased by two times. The paper discusses these improvements in apt details

  3. Whole-body vibration improves the anti-inflammatory status in elderly subjects through toll-like receptor 2 and 4 signaling pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez-Miguelez, Paula; Fernandez-Gonzalo, Rodrigo; Collado, Pilar S; Almar, Mar; Martinez-Florez, Susana; de Paz, José A; González-Gallego, Javier; Cuevas, María J

    2015-09-01

    Regular physical exercise has anti-inflammatory effects in elderly subjects. Yet, the inflammatory responses after whole body vibration (WBV) training, a popular exercise paradigm for the elderly, remain to be elucidated. This study assessed the effects of WBV training on the inflammatory response associated with toll-like receptors (TLRs) signaling pathways. Twenty-eight subjects were randomized to a training group (TG) or a control group (CG). TG followed an 8-week WBV training program. Blood samples were obtained before and after the training period in both groups. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells were isolated, and mRNA and protein levels of makers involved in the TLR2/TLR4 myeloid differentiation primary response gen 88 (MyD88) and TIR domain-containing adaptor inducing interferon (TRIF)-dependent pathways were analyzed. Plasma TNFα and C-reactive protein levels were also assessed. The WBV program reduced protein expression of TLR2, TLR4, MyD88, p65, TRIF and heat shock protein (HSP) 60, while HSP70 content increased. IL-10 mRNA level and protein concentration were upregulated, and TNFα protein content decreased, after WBV training. Plasma concentration of C-reactive protein and TNFα decreased in the TG. The current data suggest WBV may improve the anti-inflammatory status of elderly subjects through an attenuation of MyD88- and TRIF-dependent TLRs signaling pathways. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Gastro-Resistant Insulin Receptor-Binding Peptide from Momordica charantia Improved the Glucose Tolerance in Streptozotocin-Induced Diabetic Mice via Insulin Receptor Signaling Pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lo, Hsin-Yi; Li, Chia-Cheng; Chen, Feng-Yuan; Chen, Jaw-Chyun; Hsiang, Chien-Yun; Ho, Tin-Yun

    2017-10-25

    Momordica charantia is a commonly used food and has been used for the management of diabetes. Our previous study has identified an insulin receptor (IR)-binding protein (mcIRBP) from Momordica charantia. Here we identified the gastro-resistant hypoglycemic bioactive peptides from protease-digested mcIRBP. By in vitro digestion and IR kinase activity assay, we found that a 9-amino-acid-residue peptide, mcIRBP-9, was a gastro-resistant peptide that enhanced IR kinase activities. mcIRBP-9 activated IR signaling transduction pathway, which resulted in the phosphorylation of IR, the translocation of glucose transporter 4, and the uptake of glucose in cells. Intraperitoneal and oral administration of mcIRBP-9 stimulated the glucose clearance by 30.91 ± 0.39% and 32.09 ± 0.38%, respectively, in streptozotocin-induced diabetic mice. Moreover, a pilot study showed that daily ingestion of mcIRBP-9 for 30 days decreased the fasting blood glucose levels and glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) levels by 23.62 ± 6.14% and 24.06 ± 1.53%, respectively. In conclusion, mcIRBP-9 is a unique gastro-resistant bioactive peptide generated after the digestion of mcIRBP. Furthermore, oral administration of mcIRBP-9 improves both the glucose tolerance and the HbA1c levels in diabetic mice via targeting IR signaling transduction pathway.

  5. Lingering fat signals with CHESS in simultaneous imaging of both hands can be improved with rice pads in both 1.5 T and 3.0 T