Sample records for synthetic merozoite surface

  1. Human T-cell recognition of synthetic peptides representing conserved and variant sequences from the merozoite surface protein 2 of Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Theander, T G; Hviid, L; Dodoo, D


    Merozoite surface protein 2 (MSP2) is a malaria vaccine candidate currently undergoing clinical trials. We analyzed the peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) response to synthetic peptides corresponding to conserved and variant regions of the FCQ-27 allelic form of MSP2 in Ghanaian individuals....... The findings are encouraging for the development of a vaccine based on these T-epitope containing regions of MSP2, as the peptides were broadly recognized suggesting that they can bind to diverse HLA alleles and also because they include conserved MSP2 sequences. Immunisation with a vaccine construct...

  2. Molecular identification of a malaria merozoite surface sheddase.

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    Philippa K Harris


    Full Text Available Proteolytic shedding of surface proteins during invasion by apicomplexan parasites is a widespread phenomenon, thought to represent a mechanism by which the parasites disengage adhesin-receptor complexes in order to gain entry into their host cell. Erythrocyte invasion by merozoites of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum requires the shedding of ectodomain components of two essential surface proteins, called MSP1 and AMA1. Both are released by the same merozoite surface "sheddase," but the molecular identity and mode of action of this protease is unknown. Here we identify it as PfSUB2, an integral membrane subtilisin-like protease (subtilase. We show that PfSUB2 is stored in apical secretory organelles called micronemes. Upon merozoite release it is secreted onto the parasite surface and translocates to its posterior pole in an actin-dependent manner, a trafficking pattern predicted of the sheddase. Subtilase propeptides are usually selective inhibitors of their cognate protease, and the PfSUB2 propeptide is no exception; we show that recombinant PfSUB2 propeptide binds specifically to mature parasite-derived PfSUB2 and is a potent, selective inhibitor of MSP1 and AMA1 shedding, directly establishing PfSUB2 as the sheddase. PfSUB2 is a new potential target for drugs designed to prevent erythrocyte invasion by the malaria parasite.

  3. Exposure of the Plasmodium falciparum clonally variant STEVOR proteins on the merozoite surface

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    Meri Seppo


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium falciparum merozoites are free invasive forms that invade host erythrocytes in iterative cycles in the presence of different arms of the immune system. Variant antigens are known to play a role in immune evasion and several gene families coding for variant antigens have been identified in P. falciparum. However, none of them have been reported to be expressed on the surface of merozoites. Methods Flow cytometry, immunofluorescence microscopy, and immunoblotting assays were performed to assess surface exposure, membrane association and stage specific expression of the STEVOR family of variants proteins, respectively. Results Using a polyclonal antibody (anti-PFL2610w with a broad specificity towards different STEVOR variants, the STEVOR proteins were identified on the surface of non-permeabilized/non-fixed merozoites in flow cytometry assays. Anti-PFL2610w antibody showed that several STEVORs were expressed in the trophozoite stage of the parasite but only one variant was integrated into the merozoite membrane. Moreover, this antibody failed to identify STEVORs on the surface of the parent schizont infected erythrocytes (IE although they were readily identified when schizont IE were permeabilized. Conclusions These data suggest for a role for STEVOR in immune evasion by P. falciparum merozoites to allow successful invasion of erythrocytes. Additionally, the expression of STEVORs in the schizont stage may only represent a step in the biogenesis process of the merozoite surface coat.

  4. Investigation of SnSPR1, a novel and abundant surface protein of Sarcocystis neurona merozoites. (United States)

    Zhang, Deqing; Howe, Daniel K


    An expressed sequence tag (EST) sequencing project has produced over 15,000 partial cDNA sequences from the equine pathogen Sarcocystis neurona. While many of the sequences are clear homologues of previously characterized genes, a significant number of the S. neurona ESTs do not exhibit similarity to anything in the extensive sequence databases that have been generated. In an effort to characterize parasite proteins that are novel to S. neurona, a seemingly unique gene was selected for further investigation based on its abundant representation in the collection of ESTs and the predicted presence of a signal peptide and glycolipid anchor addition on the encoded protein. The gene was expressed in E. coli, and monospecific polyclonal antiserum against the recombinant protein was produced by immunization of a rabbit. Characterization of the native protein in S. neurona merozoites and schizonts revealed that it is a low molecular weight surface protein that is expressed throughout intracellular development of the parasite. The protein was designated Surface Protein 1 (SPR1) to reflect its display on the outer surface of merozoites and to distinguish it from the ubiquitous SAG/SRS surface antigens of the heteroxenous Coccidia. Interestingly, infection assays in the presence of the polyclonal antiserum suggested that SnSPR1 plays some role in attachment and/or invasion of host cells by S. neurona merozoites. The work described herein represents a general template for selecting and characterizing the various unidentified gene sequences that are plentiful in the EST databases for S. neurona and other apicomplexans. Furthermore, this study illustrates the value of investigating these novel sequences since it can offer new candidates for diagnostic or vaccine development while also providing greater insight into the biology of these parasites.

  5. N-Terminal Plasmodium vivax Merozoite Surface Protein-1, a Potential Subunit for Malaria Vivax Vaccine

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    Fernanda G. Versiani


    Full Text Available The human malaria is widely distributed in the Middle East, Asia, the western Pacific, and Central and South America. Plasmodium vivax started to have the attention of many researchers since it is causing diseases to millions of people and several reports of severe malaria cases have been noticed in the last few years. The lack of in vitro cultures for P. vivax represents a major delay in developing a functional malaria vaccine. One of the major candidates to antimalarial vaccine is the merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP1, which is expressed abundantly on the merozoite surface and capable of activating the host protective immunity. Studies have shown that MSP-1 possesses highly immunogenic fragments, capable of generating immune response and protection in natural infection in endemic regions. This paper shows humoral immune response to different proteins of PvMSP1 and the statement of N-terminal to be added to the list of potential candidates for malaria vivax vaccine.

  6. Induction of protective immunity to Theileria annulata using two major merozoite surface antigens presented by different delivery systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    C. D'Oliveira; A. Feenstra; H.W. Vos (Helma); A.D.M.E. Osterhaus (Albert); B.R. Shiels; A.W.C.A. Cornelissen; F. Jongejan


    textabstractAllelic forms (Tams1-1 and Tams1-2) of the major merozoite surface antigen gene of Theileria annulata have recently been expressed in Escherichia coli and in Salmonella typhimurium aroA vaccine strain SL3261. To test the potential of subunit vaccines against T. annulata infection, we

  7. Genetic diversity of the merozoite surface protein-3 gene in Plasmodium falciparum populations in Thailand. (United States)

    Pattaradilokrat, Sittiporn; Sawaswong, Vorthon; Simpalipan, Phumin; Kaewthamasorn, Morakot; Siripoon, Napaporn; Harnyuttanakorn, Pongchai


    An effective malaria vaccine is an urgently needed tool to fight against human malaria, the most deadly parasitic disease of humans. One promising candidate is the merozoite surface protein-3 (MSP-3) of Plasmodium falciparum. This antigenic protein, encoded by the merozoite surface protein (msp-3) gene, is polymorphic and classified according to size into the two allelic types of K1 and 3D7. A recent study revealed that both the K1 and 3D7 alleles co-circulated within P. falciparum populations in Thailand, but the extent of the sequence diversity and variation within each allelic type remains largely unknown. The msp-3 gene was sequenced from 59 P. falciparum samples collected from five endemic areas (Mae Hong Son, Kanchanaburi, Ranong, Trat and Ubon Ratchathani) in Thailand and analysed for nucleotide sequence diversity, haplotype diversity and deduced amino acid sequence diversity. The gene was also subject to population genetic analysis (F st ) and neutrality tests (Tajima's D, Fu and Li D* and Fu and Li' F* tests) to determine any signature of selection. The sequence analyses revealed eight unique DNA haplotypes and seven amino acid sequence variants, with a haplotype and nucleotide diversity of 0.828 and 0.049, respectively. Neutrality tests indicated that the polymorphism detected in the alanine heptad repeat region of MSP-3 was maintained by positive diversifying selection, suggesting its role as a potential target of protective immune responses and supporting its role as a vaccine candidate. Comparison of MSP-3 variants among parasite populations in Thailand, India and Nigeria also inferred a close genetic relationship between P. falciparum populations in Asia. This study revealed the extent of the msp-3 gene diversity in P. falciparum in Thailand, providing the fundamental basis for the better design of future blood stage malaria vaccines against P. falciparum.

  8. Specific T-cell recognition of the merozoite proteins rhoptry-associated protein 1 and erythrocyte-binding antigen 1 of Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakobsen, P H; Hviid, L; Theander, T G


    The merozoite proteins merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-1) and rhoptry-associated protein 1 (RAP-1) and synthetic peptides containing sequences of MSP-1, RAP-1, and erythrocyte-binding antigen 1, induced in vitro proliferative responses of lymphocytes collected from Ghanaian blood donors living i...... by individuals living in an area with a high transmission rate of malaria. Most of the donor plasma samples tested contained immunoglobulin G (IgG) and IgM antibodies recognizing the merozoite proteins, while only a minority showed high IgG reactivity to the synthetic peptides.......The merozoite proteins merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-1) and rhoptry-associated protein 1 (RAP-1) and synthetic peptides containing sequences of MSP-1, RAP-1, and erythrocyte-binding antigen 1, induced in vitro proliferative responses of lymphocytes collected from Ghanaian blood donors living...

  9. Limited variation in vaccine candidate Plasmodium falciparum Merozoite Surface Protein-6 over multiple transmission seasons

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    Branch OraLee H


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium falciparum Merozoite Surface Protein-6 (PfMSP6 is a component of the complex proteinacious coat that surrounds P. falciparum merozoites. This location, and the presence of anti-PfMSP6 antibodies in P. falciparum-exposed individuals, makes PfMSP6 a potential blood stage vaccine target. However, genetic diversity has proven to be a major hurdle for vaccines targeting other blood stage P. falciparum antigens, and few endemic field studies assessing PfMSP6 gene diversity have been conducted. This study follows PfMSP6 diversity in the Peruvian Amazon from 2003 to 2006 and is the first longitudinal assessment of PfMSP6 sequence dynamics. Methods Parasite DNA was extracted from 506 distinct P. falciparum infections spanning the transmission seasons from 2003 to 2006 as part of the Malaria Immunology and Genetics in the Amazon (MIGIA cohort study near Iquitos, Peru. PfMSP6 was amplified from each sample using a nested PCR protocol, genotyped for allele class by agarose gel electrophoresis, and sequenced to detect diversity. Allele frequencies were analysed using JMP v. and correlated with clinical and epidemiological data collected as part of the MIGIA project. Results Both PfMSP6 allele classes, K1-like and 3D7-like, were detected at the study site, confirming that both are globally distributed. Allele frequencies varied significantly between transmission seasons, with 3D7-class alleles dominating and K1-class alleles nearly disappearing in 2005 and 2006. There was a significant association between allele class and village location (p-value = 0.0008, but no statistically significant association between allele class and age, sex, or symptom status. No intra-allele class sequence diversity was detected. Conclusions Both PfMSP6 allele classes are globally distributed, and this study shows that allele frequencies can fluctuate significantly between communities separated by only a few kilometres, and over time in the

  10. A novel merozoite surface antigen of Plasmodium falciparum (MSP-3 identified by cellular-antibody cooperative mechanism antigenicity and biological activity of antibodies

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    Claude Oeuvray


    Full Text Available We report the identification of a 48kDa antigen targeted by antibodies which inhibit Plasmodium falciparum in vitro growth by cooperation with blood monocytes in an ADCI assay correlated to the naturally acquired protection. This protein is located on the surface of the merozoite stage of P. falciparum, and is detectable in all isolates tested. Epidemiological studies demonstrated that peptides derived from the amino acid sequence of MSP-3 contain potent B and T-cell epitopes recognized by a majority of individuals living in endemic areas. Moreover human antibodies either purified on the recombinant protein, or on the synthetic peptide MSP-3b, as well as antibodies raised in mice, were all found to promote parasite killing mediated by monocytes.

  11. Temporal stability of naturally acquired immunity to Merozoite Surface Protein-1 in Kenyan Adults

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    Crabb Brendan S


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Naturally acquired immunity to blood-stage Plasmodium falciparum infection develops with age and after repeated infections. In order to identify immune surrogates that can inform vaccine trials conducted in malaria endemic populations and to better understand the basis of naturally acquired immunity it is important to appreciate the temporal stability of cellular and humoral immune responses to malaria antigens. Methods Blood samples from 16 adults living in a malaria holoendemic region of western Kenya were obtained at six time points over the course of 9 months. T cell immunity to the 42 kDa C-terminal fragment of Merozoite Surface Protein-1 (MSP-142 was determined by IFN-γ ELISPOT. Antibodies to the 42 kDa and 19 kDa C-terminal fragments of MSP-1 were determined by serology and by functional assays that measure MSP-119 invasion inhibition antibodies (IIA to the E-TSR (3D7 allele and growth inhibitory activity (GIA. The haplotype of MSP-119 alleles circulating in the population was determined by PCR. The kappa test of agreement was used to determine stability of immunity over the specified time intervals of 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 6 months, and 9 months. Results MSP-1 IgG antibodies determined by serology were most consistent over time, followed by MSP-1 specific T cell IFN-γ responses and GIA. MSP-119 IIA showed the least stability over time. However, the level of MSP-119 specific IIA correlated with relatively higher rainfall and higher prevalence of P. falciparum infection with the MSP-119 E-TSR haplotype. Conclusion Variation in the stability of cellular and humoral immune responses to P. falciparum blood stage antigens needs to be considered when interpreting the significance of these measurements as immune endpoints in residents of malaria endemic regions.

  12. Diversity of Babesia bovis merozoite surface antigen genes in the Philippines. (United States)

    Tattiyapong, Muncharee; Sivakumar, Thillaiampalam; Ybanez, Adrian Patalinghug; Ybanez, Rochelle Haidee Daclan; Perez, Zandro Obligado; Guswanto, Azirwan; Igarashi, Ikuo; Yokoyama, Naoaki


    Babesia bovis is the causative agent of fatal babesiosis in cattle. In the present study, we investigated the genetic diversity of B. bovis among Philippine cattle, based on the genes that encode merozoite surface antigens (MSAs). Forty-one B. bovis-positive blood DNA samples from cattle were used to amplify the msa-1, msa-2b, and msa-2c genes. In phylogenetic analyses, the msa-1, msa-2b, and msa-2c gene sequences generated from Philippine B. bovis-positive DNA samples were found in six, three, and four different clades, respectively. All of the msa-1 and most of the msa-2b sequences were found in clades that were formed only by Philippine msa sequences in the respective phylograms. While all the msa-1 sequences from the Philippines showed similarity to those formed by Australian msa-1 sequences, the msa-2b sequences showed similarity to either Australian or Mexican msa-2b sequences. In contrast, msa-2c sequences from the Philippines were distributed across all the clades of the phylogram, although one clade was formed exclusively by Philippine msa-2c sequences. Similarities among the deduced amino acid sequences of MSA-1, MSA-2b, and MSA-2c from the Philippines were 62.2-100, 73.1-100, and 67.3-100%, respectively. The present findings demonstrate that B. bovis populations are genetically diverse in the Philippines. This information will provide a good foundation for the future design and implementation of improved immunological preventive methodologies against bovine babesiosis in the Philippines. The study has also generated a set of data that will be useful for futher understanding of the global genetic diversity of this important parasite. © 2013.

  13. Genotypic diversity of merozoite surface antigen 1 of Babesia bovis within an endemic population. (United States)

    Lau, Audrey O T; Cereceres, Karla; Palmer, Guy H; Fretwell, Debbie L; Pedroni, Monica J; Mosqueda, Juan; McElwain, Terry F


    Multiple genetically distinct strains of a pathogen circulate and compete for dominance within populations of animal reservoir hosts. Understanding the basis for genotypic strain structure is critical for predicting how pathogens respond to selective pressures and how shifts in pathogen population structure can lead to disease outbreaks. Evidence from related Apicomplexans such as Plasmodium, Toxoplasma, Cryptosporidium and Theileria suggests that various patterns of population dynamics exist, including but not limited to clonal, oligoclonal, panmictic and epidemic genotypic strain structures. In Babesia bovis, genetic diversity of variable merozoite surface antigen (VMSA) genes has been associated with disease outbreaks, including in previously vaccinated animals. However, the extent of VMSA diversity within a defined population in an endemic area has not been examined. We analyzed genotypic diversity and temporal change of MSA-1, a member of the VMSA family, in individual infected animals within a reservoir host population. Twenty-eight distinct MSA-1 genotypes were identified within the herd. All genotypically distinct MSA-1 sequences clustered into three groups based on sequence similarity. Two thirds of the animals tested changed their dominant MSA-1 genotypes during a 6-month period. Five animals within the population contained multiple genotypes. Interestingly, the predominant genotypes within those five animals also changed over the 6-month sampling period, suggesting ongoing transmission or emergence of variant MSA-1 genotypes within the herd. This study demonstrated an unexpected level of diversity for a single copy gene in a haploid genome, and illustrates the dynamic genotype structure of B. bovis within an individual animal in an endemic region. Co-infection with multiple diverse MSA-1 genotypes provides a basis for more extensive genotypic shifts that characterizes outbreak strains.

  14. Genetic diversity and antigenicity variation of Babesia bovis merozoite surface antigen-1 (MSA-1) in Thailand. (United States)

    Tattiyapong, Muncharee; Sivakumar, Thillaiampalam; Takemae, Hitoshi; Simking, Pacharathon; Jittapalapong, Sathaporn; Igarashi, Ikuo; Yokoyama, Naoaki


    Babesia bovis, an intraerythrocytic protozoan parasite, causes severe clinical disease in cattle worldwide. The genetic diversity of parasite antigens often results in different immune profiles in infected animals, hindering efforts to develop immune control methodologies against the B. bovis infection. In this study, we analyzed the genetic diversity of the merozoite surface antigen-1 (msa-1) gene using 162 B. bovis-positive blood DNA samples sourced from cattle populations reared in different geographical regions of Thailand. The identity scores shared among 93 msa-1 gene sequences isolated by PCR amplification were 43.5-100%, and the similarity values among the translated amino acid sequences were 42.8-100%. Of 23 total clades detected in our phylogenetic analysis, Thai msa-1 gene sequences occurred in 18 clades; seven among them were composed of sequences exclusively from Thailand. To investigate differential antigenicity of isolated MSA-1 proteins, we expressed and purified eight recombinant MSA-1 (rMSA-1) proteins, including an rMSA-1 from B. bovis Texas (T2Bo) strain and seven rMSA-1 proteins based on the Thai msa-1 sequences. When these antigens were analyzed in a western blot assay, anti-T2Bo cattle serum strongly reacted with the rMSA-1 from T2Bo, as well as with three other rMSA-1 proteins that shared 54.9-68.4% sequence similarity with T2Bo MSA-1. In contrast, no or weak reactivity was observed for the remaining rMSA-1 proteins, which shared low sequence similarity (35.0-39.7%) with T2Bo MSA-1. While demonstrating the high genetic diversity of the B. bovis msa-1 gene in Thailand, the present findings suggest that the genetic diversity results in antigenicity variations among the MSA-1 antigens of B. bovis in Thailand. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Plasmodium vivax merozoite surface protein-3 alpha: a high-resolution marker for genetic diversity studies. (United States)

    Prajapati, Surendra Kumar; Joshi, Hema; Valecha, Neena


    Malaria, an ancient human infectious disease caused by five species of Plasmodium, among them Plasmodium vivax is the most widespread human malaria species and causes huge morbidity to its host. Identification of genetic marker to resolve higher genetic diversity for an ancient origin organism is a crucial task. We have analyzed genetic diversity of P. vivax field isolates using highly polymorphic antigen gene merozoite surface protein-3 alpha (msp-3 alpha) and assessed its suitability as high-resolution genetic marker for population genetic studies. 27 P. vivax field isolates collected during chloroquine therapeutic efficacy study at Chennai were analyzed for genetic diversity. PCR-RFLP was employed to assess the genetic variations using highly polymorphic antigen gene msp-3 alpha. We observed three distinct PCR alleles at msp-3 alpha, and among them allele A showed significantly high frequency (53%, chi2 = 8.22, p = 0.001). PCR-RFLP analysis revealed 14 and 17 distinct RFLP patterns for Hha1 and Alu1 enzymes respectively. Further, RFLP analysis revealed that allele A at msp-3 alpha is more diverse in the population compared with allele B and C. Combining Hha1 and Alu1 RFLP patterns revealed 21 distinct genotypes among 22 isolates reflects higher diversity resolution power of msp-3 alpha in the field isolates. P. vivax isolates from Chennai region revealed substantial amount of genetic diversity and comparison of allelic diversity with other antigen genes and microsatellites suggesting that msp-3 alpha could be a high-resolution marker for genetic diversity studies among P. vivax field isolates.

  16. Merozoite surface protein-1 genetic diversity in Plasmodium malariae and Plasmodium brasilianum from Brazil. (United States)

    Guimarães, Lilian O; Wunderlich, Gerhard; Alves, João M P; Bueno, Marina G; Röhe, Fabio; Catão-Dias, José L; Neves, Amanda; Malafronte, Rosely S; Curado, Izilda; Domingues, Wilson; Kirchgatter, Karin


    The merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP1) gene encodes the major surface antigen of invasive forms of the Plasmodium erythrocytic stages and is considered a candidate vaccine antigen against malaria. Due to its polymorphisms, MSP1 is also useful for strain discrimination and consists of a good genetic marker. Sequence diversity in MSP1 has been analyzed in field isolates of three human parasites: P. falciparum, P. vivax, and P. ovale. However, the extent of variation in another human parasite, P. malariae, remains unknown. This parasite shows widespread, uneven distribution in tropical and subtropical regions throughout South America, Asia, and Africa. Interestingly, it is genetically indistinguishable from P. brasilianum, a parasite known to infect New World monkeys in Central and South America. Specific fragments (1 to 5) covering 60 % of the MSP1 gene (mainly the putatively polymorphic regions), were amplified by PCR in isolates of P. malariae and P. brasilianum from different geographic origin and hosts. Sequencing of the PCR-amplified products or cloned PCR fragments was performed and the sequences were used to construct a phylogenetic tree by the maximum likelihood method. Data were computed to give insights into the evolutionary and phylogenetic relationships of these parasites. Except for fragment 4, sequences from all other fragments consisted of unpublished sequences. The most polymorphic gene region was fragment 2, and in samples where this region lacks polymorphism, all other regions are also identical. The low variability of the P. malariae msp1 sequences of these isolates and the identification of the same haplotype in those collected many years apart at different locations is compatible with a low transmission rate. We also found greater diversity among P. brasilianum isolates compared with P. malariae ones. Lastly, the sequences were segregated according to their geographic origins and hosts, showing a strong genetic and geographic structure. Our data

  17. Genetic diversity of merozoite surface antigens in Babesia bovis detected from Sri Lankan cattle. (United States)

    Sivakumar, Thillaiampalam; Okubo, Kazuhiro; Igarashi, Ikuo; de Silva, Weligodage Kumarawansa; Kothalawala, Hemal; Silva, Seekkuge Susil Priyantha; Vimalakumar, Singarayar Caniciyas; Meewewa, Asela Sanjeewa; Yokoyama, Naoaki


    Babesia bovis, the causative agent of severe bovine babesiosis, is endemic in Sri Lanka. The live attenuated vaccine (K-strain), which was introduced in the early 1990s, has been used to immunize cattle populations in endemic areas of the country. The present study was undertaken to determine the genetic diversity of merozoite surface antigens (MSAs) in B. bovis isolates from Sri Lankan cattle, and to compare the gene sequences obtained from such isolates against those of the K-strain. Forty-four bovine blood samples isolated from different geographical regions of Sri Lanka and judged to be B. bovis-positive by PCR screening were used to amplify MSAs (MSA-1, MSA-2c, MSA-2a1, MSA-2a2, and MSA-2b), AMA-1, and 12D3 genes from parasite DNA. Although the AMA-1 and 12D3 gene sequences were highly conserved among the Sri Lankan isolates, the MSA gene sequences from the same isolates were highly diverse. Sri Lankan MSA-1, MSA-2c, MSA-2a1, MSA-2a2, and MSA-2b sequences clustered within 5, 2, 4, 1, and 9 different clades in the gene phylograms, respectively, while the minimum similarity values among the deduced amino acid sequences of these genes were 36.8%, 68.7%, 80.3%, 100%, and 68.3%, respectively. In the phylograms, none of the Sri Lankan sequences fell within clades containing the respective K-strain sequences. Additionally, the similarity values for MSA-1 and MSA-2c were 40-61.8% and 90.9-93.2% between the Sri Lankan isolates and the K-strain, respectively, while the K-strain MSA-2a/b sequence shared 64.5-69.8%, 69.3%, and 70.5-80.3% similarities with the Sri Lankan MSA-2a1, MSA-2a2, and MSA-2b sequences, respectively. The present study has shown that genetic diversity among MSAs of Sri Lankan B. bovis isolates is very high, and that the sequences of field isolates diverged genetically from the K-strain. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Partial Sequence Analysis of Merozoite Surface Proteine-3α Gene in Plasmodium vivax Isolates from Malarious Areas of Iran

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    H Mirhendi


    Full Text Available Background: Approximately 85-90% of malaria infections in Iran are attributed to Plasmodium vivax, while little is known about the genetic of the parasite and its strain types in this region. This study was designed and performed for describing genetic characteristics of Plasmodium vivax population of Iran based on the merozoite surface protein-3α gene sequence. Methods: Through a descriptive study we analyzed partial P. vivax merozoite surface protein-3α gene sequences from 17 clinical P. vivax isolates collected from malarious areas of Iran. Genomic DNA was extracted by Q1Aamp® DNA blood mini kit, amplified through nested PCR for a partial nucleotide sequence of PvMSP-3 gene in P. vivax. PCR-amplified products were sequenced with an ABI Prism Perkin-Elmer 310 sequencer machine and the data were analyzed with clustal W software. Results: Analysis of PvMSP-3 gene sequences demonstrated extensive polymorphisms, but the sequence identity between isolates of same types was relatively high. We identified specific insertions and deletions for the types A, B and C variants of P. vivax in our isolates. In phylogenetic comparison of geographically separated isolates, there was not a significant geo­graphical branching of the parasite populations. Conclusion: The highly polymorphic nature of isolates suggests that more investigations of the PvMSP-3 gene are needed to explore its vaccine potential.

  19. Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 - Glycosylation and localization to low-density, detergent-resistant membranes in the parasitized erythrocyte

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hoessli, D.C.; Poincelet, M.; Gupta, Ramneek


    In addition to the major carbohydrate moieties of the glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchor, we report that Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-1) bears O-GlcNAc modifications predominantly in beta-anomeric configuration, in both the C- and N-terminal portions of the protei...

  20. A longitudinal study of type-specific antibody responses to Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein-1 in an area of unstable malaria in Sudan

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cavanagh, D R; Elhassan, I M; Roper, C


    Merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1) of Plasmodium falciparum is a malaria vaccine candidate Ag. Immunity to MSP-1 has been implicated in protection against infection in animal models. However, MSP-1 is a polymorphic protein and its immune recognition by humans following infection is not well unde...

  1. Genetic diversity of plasmodium vivax merozoite surface protein-3alpha (Pvmsp-3alpha) gene in Jhapa District of Nepal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Adhikari, Madhav; Ranjitkar, Samir; Schousboe, Mette Leth


    In Nepal, Plasmodium vivax accounts for approximately 80-90% of the malaria cases, but limited studies have been conducted on the genetic diversity of this parasite population. This study was carried out to determine the genetic diversity of P. vivax population sampled from subjects living...... in an endemic area of Jhapa District by analyzing the polymorphic merozoite surface protein-3alpha (Pvmsp-3alpha) gene by using PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism. Three distinct genotypes were obtained from 96 samples; type A: 40 (71%), type B: 7 (13%), and type C: 9 (16%) which could be categorized...... into 13 allelic patterns: A1-A9, B1, B2, C1 and C2. These results indicated a high genetic diversity within the studied P. vivax population. As the transmission rate of malaria is low in Nepal, the diversity is most likely due to migration of people between the malaria endemic regions, either within...

  2. Allelic Diversity and Geographical Distribution of the Gene Encoding Plasmodium falciparum Merozoite Surface Protein-3 in Thailand. (United States)

    Sawaswong, Vorthon; Simpalipan, Phumin; Siripoon, Napaporn; Harnyuttanakorn, Pongchai; Pattaradilokrat, Sittiporn


    Merozoite surface proteins (MSPs) of malaria parasites play critical roles during the erythrocyte invasion and so are potential candidates for malaria vaccine development. However, because MSPs are often under strong immune selection, they can exhibit extensive genetic diversity. The gene encoding the merozoite surface protein-3 (MSP-3) of Plasmodium falciparum displays 2 allelic types, K1 and 3D7. In Thailand, the allelic frequency of the P. falciparum msp-3 gene was evaluated in a single P. falciparum population in Tak at the Thailand and Myanmar border. However, no study has yet looked at the extent of genetic diversity of the msp-3 gene in P. falciparum populations in other localities. Here, we genotyped the msp-3 alleles of 63 P. falciparum samples collected from 5 geographical populations along the borders of Thailand with 3 neighboring countries (Myanmar, Laos, and Cambodia). Our study indicated that the K1 and 3D7 alleles coexisted, but at different proportions in different Thai P. falciparum populations. K1 was more prevalent in populations at the Thailand-Myanmar and Thailand-Cambodia borders, whilst 3D7 was more prevalent at the Thailand-Laos border. Global analysis of the msp-3 allele frequencies revealed that proportions of K1 and 3D7 alleles of msp-3 also varied in different continents, suggesting the divergence of malaria parasite populations. In conclusion, the variation in the msp-3 allelic patterns of P. falciparum in Thailand provides fundamental knowledge for inferring the P. falciparum population structure and for the best design of msp-3 based malaria vaccines.

  3. Genetic Diversity of Plasmodium falciparum Merozoite Surface Protein-1 Block 2 in Sites of Contrasting Altitudes and Malaria Endemicities in the Mount Cameroon Region


    Wanji, Samuel; Kengne-Ouafo, Arnaud J.; Joan Eyong, Ebanga E.; Kimbi, Helen K.; Tendongfor, Nicholas; Ndamukong-Nyanga, Judith L.; Nana-Djeunga, Hugues C.; Bourguinat, Catherine; Sofeu-Feugaing, David D.; Charvet, Claude L.


    The present study analyzed the relationship between the genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum and parasitologic/entomologic indices in the Mount Cameroon region by using merozoite surface protein 1 as a genetic marker. Blood samples were collected from asymptomatic children from three altitude zones (high, intermediate, and low). Parasitologic and entomologic indices were determined by microscopy and landing catch mosquito collection/circumsporozoite protein–enzyme-linked immunosorbent a...

  4. Analysis of Polymorphisms in the Merozoite Surface Protein-3a Gene and Two Microsatellite Loci in Sri Lankan Plasmodium vivax: Evidence of Population Substructure in Sri Lanka

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, Mette L; Rajakaruna, Rupika S; Amerasinghe, Priyanie H


    Abstract. The geographical distribution of genetic variation in Plasmodium vivax samples (N = 386) from nine districts across Sri Lanka is described using three markers; the P. vivax merozoite surface protein-3a (Pvmsp-3a) gene, and the two microsatellites m1501 and m3502. At Pvmsp-3a, 11 alleles....... The results show evidence of high genetic diversity and possible population substructure of P. vivax populations in Sri Lanka....

  5. The SnSAG merozoite surface antigens of Sarcocystis neurona are expressed differentially during the bradyzoite and sporozoite life cycle stages. (United States)

    Gautam, A; Dubey, J P; Saville, W J; Howe, D K


    Sarcocystis neurona is a two-host coccidian parasite whose complex life cycle progresses through multiple developmental stages differing at morphological and molecular levels. The S. neurona merozoite surface is covered by multiple, related glycosylphosphatidylinositol-linked proteins, which are orthologous to the surface antigen (SAG)/SAG1-related sequence (SRS) gene family of Toxoplasma gondii. Expression of the SAG/SRS proteins in T. gondii and another related parasite Neospora caninum is life-cycle stage specific and seems necessary for parasite transmission and persistence of infection. In the present study, the expression of S. neurona merozoite surface antigens (SnSAGs) was evaluated in the sporozoite and bradyzoite stages. Western blot analysis was used to compare SnSAG expression in merozoites versus sporozoites, while immunocytochemistry was performed to examine expression of the SnSAGs in merozoites versus bradyzoites. These analyses revealed that SnSAG2, SnSAG3 and SnSAG4 are expressed in sporozoites, while SnSAG5 was appeared to be downregulated in this life cycle stage. In S. neurona bradyzoites, it was found that SnSAG2, SnSAG3, SnSAG4 and SnSAG5 were either absent or expression was greatly reduced. As shown for T. gondii, stage-specific expression of the SnSAGs may be important for the parasite to progress through its developmental stages and complete its life cycle successfully. Thus, it is possible that the SAG switching mechanism by these parasites could be exploited as a point of intervention. As well, the alterations in surface antigen expression during different life cycle stages may need to be considered when designing prospective approaches for protective vaccination. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Formation of the food vacuole in Plasmodium falciparum: a potential role for the 19 kDa fragment of merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP1(19.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anton R Dluzewski


    Full Text Available Plasmodium falciparum Merozoite Surface Protein 1 (MSP1 is synthesized during schizogony as a 195-kDa precursor that is processed into four fragments on the parasite surface. Following a second proteolytic cleavage during merozoite invasion of the red blood cell, most of the protein is shed from the surface except for the C-terminal 19-kDa fragment (MSP1(19, which is still attached to the merozoite via its GPI-anchor. We have examined the fate of MSP1(19 during the parasite's subsequent intracellular development using immunochemical analysis of metabolically labeled MSP1(19, fluorescence imaging, and immuno-electronmicroscopy. Our data show that MSP1(19 remains intact and persists to the end of the intracellular cycle. This protein is the first marker for the biogenesis of the food vacuole; it is rapidly endocytosed into small vacuoles in the ring stage, which coalesce to form the single food vacuole containing hemozoin, and persists into the discarded residual body. The food vacuole is marked by the presence of both MSP1(19 and the chloroquine resistance transporter (CRT as components of the vacuolar membrane. Newly synthesized MSP1 is excluded from the vacuole. This behavior indicates that MSP1(19 does not simply follow a classical lysosome-like clearance pathway, instead, it may play a significant role in the biogenesis and function of the food vacuole throughout the intra-erythrocytic phase.

  7. Evidence that Surface Proteins Sn14 and Sn16 of Sarcocystis neurona Merozoites Are Involved in Infection and Immunity† (United States)

    Liang, Fang Ting; Granstrom, David E.; Zhao, Xiao Min; Timoney, John F.


    Sarcocystis neurona is the etiologic agent of equine protozoal myeloencephalitis (EPM). Based on an analysis of 25,000 equine serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples, including samples from horses with neurologic signs typical of EPM or with histologically or parasitologically confirmed EPM, four major immunoblot band patterns have been identified. Twenty-three serum and CSF samples representing each of the four immunoblot patterns were selected from 220 samples from horses with neurologic signs resembling EPM and examined for inhibitory effects on the infectivity of S. neurona by an in vitro neutralization assay. A high correlation between immunoblot band pattern and neutralizing activity was detected. Two proteins, Sn14 and Sn16 (14 and 16 kDa, respectively), appeared to be important for in vitro infection. A combination of the results of surface protein labeling, immunoprecipitation, Western blotting, and trypsin digestion suggests that these molecules are surface proteins and may be useful components of a vaccine against S. neurona infection. Although S. neurona is an obligate intracellular parasite, it is potentially a target for specific antibodies which may lyse merozoites via complement or inhibit their attachment and penetration to host cells. PMID:9573058

  8. Genetic diversity in the block 2 region of the merozoite surface protein-1 of Plasmodium falciparum in central India

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    Bharti Praveen K


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malaria continues to be a significant health problem in India. Several of the intended Plasmodium falciparum vaccine candidate antigens are highly polymorphic. The genetic diversity of P. falciparum merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1 has been extensively studied from various parts of the world. However, limited data are available from India. The aim of the present study was a molecular characterization of block 2 region of MSP-1 gene from the tribal-dominated, forested region of Madhya Pradesh. Methods DNA sequencing analysis was carried out in 71 field isolates collected between July 2005 to November 2005 and in 98 field isolates collected from July 2009 to December 2009. Alleles identified by DNA sequencing were aligned with the strain 3D7 and polymorphism analysis was done by using Edit Sequence tool (DNASTAR. Results The malaria positivity was 26% in 2005, which rose to 29% in 2009 and P. falciparum prevalence was also increased from 72% in 2005 to 81% in 2009. The overall allelic prevalence was higher in K1 (51% followed by MAD20 (28% and RO33 (21% in 2005 while in 2009, RO33 was highest (40% followed by K1 (36% and MAD20 (24%. Conclusions The present study reports extensive genetic variations and dynamic evolution of block 2 region of MSP-1 in central India. Characterization of antigenic diversity in vaccine candidate antigens are valuable for future vaccine trials as well as understanding the population dynamics of P. falciparum parasites in this area.

  9. Expression and Evaluation of Recombinant Plasmodium knowlesi Merozoite Surface Protein-3 (MSP-3 for Detection of Human Malaria.

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    Jeremy Ryan De Silva

    Full Text Available Malaria remains a major health threat in many parts of the globe and causes high mortality and morbidity with 214 million cases of malaria occurring globally in 2015. Recent studies have outlined potential diagnostic markers and vaccine candidates one of which is the merozoite surface protein (MSP-3. In this study, novel recombinant Plasmodium knowlesi MSP-3 was cloned, expressed and purified in an Escherichia coli system. Subsequently, the recombinant protein was evaluated for its sensitivity and specificity. The recombinant pkMSP-3 protein reacted with sera from patients with P. knowlesi infection in both Western blot (61% and ELISA (100%. Specificity-wise, pkMSP-3 did not react with healthy donor sera in either assay and only reacted with a few non-malarial parasitic patient sera in the ELISA assay (3 of 49. In conclusion, sensitivity and specificity of pkMSP-3 was found to be high in the ELISA and Western Blot assay and thus utilising both assays in tandem would provide the best sero-diagnostic result for P. knowlesi infection.

  10. Sequence diversity of the C-terminal region of Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 in southern Iran. (United States)

    Zamani, Zahra; Razavi, Mohammad Reza; Sadeghi, Sedigheh; Naddaf, Saeed; Pourfallah, Fatemeh; Mirkhani, Fatemeh; Arjmand, Mohammad; Feizhaddad, Hossein; Rad, Mina Ebrahimi; Ebrahimi Rad, Mina; Tameemi, Marzieh; Assmar, Mehdi


    The C-terminal region of the merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-1) of Plasmodium falciparum is a strong vaccine candidate as it is associated with immunity to the parasite. This corresponds approximately to the conserved 17th block of the gene and is composed of two EGF- like domains. These domains exhibit only four single amino acid substitutions which show several potential variants in this region of the gene. As the variations might be important for a regional vaccine design, a study was carried out to determine the variations present in P. falciparum isolates from southern Iran. Besides the usual E-T-S-R-L and the Q-K-N-G-F types, we found Q-T-S-R-L, E-K-N-G-F, E-T-S-G-L, Z-T-S-G-L and Z-T-S-R-L types, where Z was E or Q signifying the presence of mixed clones in single isolates.

  11. Longitudinal and Cross-Sectional Genetic Diversity in the Korean Peninsula Based on the P vivax Merozoite Surface Protein Gene. (United States)

    Kim, Jung-Yeon; Suh, Eun-Jung; Yu, Hyo-Soon; Jung, Hyun-Sik; Park, In-Ho; Choi, Yien-Kyeoug; Choi, Kyoung-Mi; Cho, Shin-Hyeong; Lee, Won-Ja


    Vivax malaria has reemerged and become endemic in Korea. Our study aimed to analyze by both longitudinal and cross-sectional genetic diversity of this malaria based on the P vivax Merozoite Surface Protein (PvMSP) gene parasites recently found in the Korean peninsula. PvMSP-1 gene sequence analysis from P vivax isolates (n = 835) during the 1996-2010 period were longitudinally analyzed and the isolates from the Korean peninsula through South Korea, the demilitarized zone and North Korea collected in 2008-2010 were enrolled in an overall analysis of MSP-1 gene diversity. New recombinant subtypes and severe multiple-cloneinfection rates were observed in recent vivax parasites. Regional variation was also observed in the study sites. This study revealed the great complexity of genetic variation and rapid dissemination of genes in P vivax. It also showed interesting patterns of diversity depending, on the region in the Korean Peninsula. Understanding the parasiteninsula. Under genetic variation may help to analyze trends and assess the extent of endemic malaria in Korea.

  12. Differential sequence diversity at merozoite surface protein-1 locus of Plasmodium knowlesi from humans and macaques in Thailand. (United States)

    Putaporntip, Chaturong; Thongaree, Siriporn; Jongwutiwes, Somchai


    To determine the genetic diversity and potential transmission routes of Plasmodium knowlesi, we analyzed the complete nucleotide sequence of the gene encoding the merozoite surface protein-1 of this simian malaria (Pkmsp-1), an asexual blood-stage vaccine candidate, from naturally infected humans and macaques in Thailand. Analysis of Pkmsp-1 sequences from humans (n=12) and monkeys (n=12) reveals five conserved and four variable domains. Most nucleotide substitutions in conserved domains were dimorphic whereas three of four variable domains contained complex repeats with extensive sequence and size variation. Besides purifying selection in conserved domains, evidence of intragenic recombination scattering across Pkmsp-1 was detected. The number of haplotypes, haplotype diversity, nucleotide diversity and recombination sites of human-derived sequences exceeded that of monkey-derived sequences. Phylogenetic networks based on concatenated conserved sequences of Pkmsp-1 displayed a character pattern that could have arisen from sampling process or the presence of two independent routes of P. knowlesi transmission, i.e. from macaques to human and from human to humans in Thailand. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Genetic diversity of plasmodium vivax merozoite surface protein-3alpha (Pvmsp-3alpha) gene in Jhapa District of Nepal. (United States)

    Adhikari, Madhav; Ranjitkar, Samir; Schousboe, Mette Leth; Alifrangis, Michael; Imwong, Mallika; Bhatta, Dwij Raj; Banjara, Megha Raj


    In Nepal, Plasmodium vivax accounts for approximately 80-90% of the malaria cases, but limited studies have been conducted on the genetic diversity of this parasite population. This study was carried out to determine the genetic diversity of P. vivax population sampled from subjects living in an endemic area of Jhapa District by analyzing the polymorphic merozoite surface protein-3alpha (Pvmsp-3alpha) gene by using PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism. Three distinct genotypes were obtained from 96 samples; type A: 40 (71%), type B: 7 (13%), and type C: 9 (16%) which could be categorized into 13 allelic patterns: A1-A9, B1, B2, C1 and C2. These results indicated a high genetic diversity within the studied P. vivax population. As the transmission rate of malaria is low in Nepal, the diversity is most likely due to migration of people between the malaria endemic regions, either within the country or between Nepal and India. Similar prevalence of the three genotypes of Pvmsp-3alpha between the two countries likely supports the latter explanation.

  14. Genetic diversity in the merozoite surface protein 1 and 2 genes of Plasmodium falciparum from the Artibonite Valley of Haiti. (United States)

    Londono-Renteria, Berlin; Eisele, Thomas P; Keating, Joseph; Bennett, Adam; Krogstad, Donald J


    Describing genetic diversity of the Plasmodium falciparum parasite provides important information about the local epidemiology of malaria. In this study, we examined the genetic diversity of P. falciparum isolates from the Artibonite Valley in Haiti using the allelic families of merozoite surface protein 1 and 2 genes (msp-1 and msp-2). The majority of study subjects infected with P. falciparum had a single parasite genotype (56% for msp-1 and 69% for msp-2: n=79); 9 distinct msp-1 genotypes were identified by size differences on agarose gels. K1 was the most polymorphic allelic family with 5 genotypes (amplicons from 100 to 300 base pairs [bp]); RO33 was the least polymorphic, with a single genotype (120-bp). Although both msp-2 alleles (3D7/IC1, FC27) had similar number of genotypes (n=4), 3D7/IC1 was more frequent (85% vs. 26%). All samples were screened for the presence of the K76T mutation on the P. falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter (pfcrt) gene with 10 of 79 samples positive. Of the 2 (out of 10) samples from individuals follow-up for 21 days, P. falciparum parasites were present through day 7 after treatment with chloroquine. No parasites were found on day 21. Our results suggest that the level of genetic diversity is low in this area of Haiti, which is consistent with an area of low transmission. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. AFCo1, a meningococcal B-derived cochleate adjuvant, strongly enhances antibody and T-cell immunity against Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 4 and 5. (United States)

    Bracho, Gustavo; Zayas, Caridad; Wang, Lina; Coppel, Ross; Pérez, Oliver; Petrovsky, Nikolai


    Whilst a large number of malaria antigens are being tested as candidate malaria vaccines, a major barrier to the development of an effective vaccine is the lack of a suitable human adjuvant capable of inducing a strong and long lasting immune response. In this study, the ability of AFCo1, a potent T and B cell adjuvant based on cochleate structures derived from meningococcal B outer membrane proteoliposomes (MBOMP), to boost the immune response against two Plasmodium falciparum antigens, merozoite surface protein 4 (MSP4) and 5 (MSP5), was evaluated. Complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA), which is able to confer protection against malaria in animal MSP4/5 vaccine challenge models, was used as positive control adjuvant. MSP4 and 5-specific IgG, delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH), T-cell proliferation, and cytokine production were evaluated in parallel in mice immunized three times intramuscularly with MSP4 or MSP5 incorporated into AFCo1, synthetic cochleate structures, CFA or phosphate buffered saline. AFCo1 significantly enhanced the IgG and T-cell response against MSP4 and MSP5, with a potency equivalent to CFA, with the response being characterized by both IgG1 and IgG2a isotypes, increased interferon gamma production and a strong DTH response, consistent with the ability of AFCo1 to induce Th1-like immune responses. Given the proven safety of MBOMP, which is already in use in a licensed human vaccine, AFCo1 could assist the development of human malaria vaccines that require a potent and safe adjuvant.

  16. AFCo1, a meningococcal B-derived cochleate adjuvant, strongly enhances antibody and T-cell immunity against Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 4 and 5

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    Pérez Oliver


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Whilst a large number of malaria antigens are being tested as candidate malaria vaccines, a major barrier to the development of an effective vaccine is the lack of a suitable human adjuvant capable of inducing a strong and long lasting immune response. In this study, the ability of AFCo1, a potent T and B cell adjuvant based on cochleate structures derived from meningococcal B outer membrane proteoliposomes (MBOMP, to boost the immune response against two Plasmodium falciparum antigens, merozoite surface protein 4 (MSP4 and 5 (MSP5, was evaluated. Methods Complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA, which is able to confer protection against malaria in animal MSP4/5 vaccine challenge models, was used as positive control adjuvant. MSP4 and 5-specific IgG, delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH, T-cell proliferation, and cytokine production were evaluated in parallel in mice immunized three times intramuscularly with MSP4 or MSP5 incorporated into AFCo1, synthetic cochleate structures, CFA or phosphate buffered saline. Results AFCo1 significantly enhanced the IgG and T-cell response against MSP4 and MSP5, with a potency equivalent to CFA, with the response being characterized by both IgG1 and IgG2a isotypes, increased interferon gamma production and a strong DTH response, consistent with the ability of AFCo1 to induce Th1-like immune responses. Conclusion Given the proven safety of MBOMP, which is already in use in a licensed human vaccine, AFCo1 could assist the development of human malaria vaccines that require a potent and safe adjuvant.

  17. Pro-inflammatory Cytokine Response and Genetic Diversity in Merozoite Surface Protein 2 of Plasmodium falciparum Isolates from Nigeria. (United States)

    Ajibaye, Olusola; Osuntoki, Akinniyi A; Ebuehi, Albert Ot; Iwalokun, Bamidele A; Balogun, Emmanuel O; Egbuna, Kathleen N


    Polymorphisms in Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein-2 ( msp -2) and associated parasite genetic diversity which varies between malaria-endemic regions remain a limitation in malaria vaccine development. Pro-inflammatory cytokines are important in immunity against malaria, understanding the influence of genetic diversity on cytokine response is important for effective vaccine design. P. falciparum isolates obtained from 300 Nigerians with uncomplicated falciparum malaria at Ijede General Hospital, Ijede (IJE), General Hospital Ajeromi, Ajeromi (AJE) and Saint Kizito Mission Hospital, Lekki, were genotyped by nested polymerase chain reaction of msp -2 block 3 while ELISA was used to determine the pro-inflammatory cytokine response to describe the genetic diversity of P. falciparum . Eighteen alleles were observed for msp -2 loci. Of the 195 isolates, 61 (31.0%) had only FC27-type alleles, 38 (19.7%) had only 3D7-type alleles, and 49.3% had multiple parasite lines with both alleles. Band sizes were 275-625 bp for FC27 and 150-425 bp for 3D7. Four alleles were observed from LEK, 2 (375-425 bp) and 2 (275-325 bp) of FC27-and 3D7-types, respectively; 12 alleles from AJE, 9 (275-625 bp) and 3 (325-425 bp) of FC27-types and 3D7-types, respectively; while IJE had a total of 12 alleles, 9 (275-625 bp) and 3 (325-425 bp) of FC27-types and 3D7-types, respectively. Mean multiplicity of infection (MOI) was 1.54. Heterozygosity ( H E ) ranged from 0.77 to 0.87 and was highest for IJE (0.87). Cytokine response was higher among 0.05) but with neither parasite density nor infection type. P. falciparum genetic diversity is extensive in Nigeria, protection via pro-inflammatory cytokines have little or no interplay with infection multiplicity.

  18. Genetic clustering and polymorphism of the merozoite surface protein-3 of Plasmodium knowlesi clinical isolates from Peninsular Malaysia. (United States)

    De Silva, Jeremy Ryan; Lau, Yee Ling; Fong, Mun Yik


    The simian malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi has been reported to cause significant numbers of human infection in South East Asia. Its merozoite surface protein-3 (MSP3) is a protein that belongs to a multi-gene family of proteins first found in Plasmodium falciparum. Several studies have evaluated the potential of P. falciparum MSP3 as a potential vaccine candidate. However, to date no detailed studies have been carried out on P. knowlesi MSP3 gene (pkmsp3). The present study investigates the genetic diversity, and haplotypes groups of pkmsp3 in P. knowlesi clinical samples from Peninsular Malaysia. Blood samples were collected from P. knowlesi malaria patients within a period of 4 years (2008-2012). The pkmsp3 gene of the isolates was amplified via PCR, and subsequently cloned and sequenced. The full length pkmsp3 sequence was divided into Domain A and Domain B. Natural selection, genetic diversity, and haplotypes of pkmsp3 were analysed using MEGA6 and DnaSP ver. 5.10.00 programmes. From 23 samples, 48 pkmsp3 sequences were successfully obtained. At the nucleotide level, 101 synonymous and 238 non-synonymous mutations were observed. Tests of neutrality were not significant for the full length, Domain A or Domain B sequences. However, the dN/dS ratio of Domain B indicates purifying selection for this domain. Analysis of the deduced amino acid sequences revealed 42 different haplotypes. Neighbour Joining phylogenetic tree and haplotype network analyses revealed that the haplotypes clustered into two distinct groups. A moderate level of genetic diversity was observed in the pkmsp3 and only the C-terminal region (Domain B) appeared to be under purifying selection. The separation of the pkmsp3 into two haplotype groups provides further evidence of the existence of two distinct P. knowlesi types or lineages. Future studies should investigate the diversity of pkmsp3 among P. knowlesi isolates in North Borneo, where large numbers of human knowlesi malaria infection

  19. Levels of antibody to conserved parts of Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 in Ghanaian children are not associated with protection from clinical malaria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dodoo, D; Theander, T G; Kurtzhals, J A


    malaria season in April and after the season in November. Using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, we measured antibody responses to recombinant gluthathione S-transferase-PfMSP119 fusion proteins corresponding to the Wellcome and MAD20 allelic variants in these samples. Prevalence of antibodies......The 19-kDa conserved C-terminal part of the Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 (PfMSP119) is a malaria vaccine candidate antigen, and human antibody responses to PfMSP119 have been associated with protection against clinical malaria. In this longitudinal study carried out in an area...

  20. Genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein-1 block 2 in sites of contrasting altitudes and malaria endemicities in the Mount Cameroon region. (United States)

    Wanji, Samuel; Kengne-Ouafo, Arnaud J; Eyong, Ebanga E Joan; Kimbi, Helen K; Tendongfor, Nicholas; Ndamukong-Nyanga, Judith L; Nana-Djeunga, Hugues C; Bourguinat, Catherine; Sofeu-Feugaing, David D; Charvet, Claude L


    The present study analyzed the relationship between the genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum and parasitologic/entomologic indices in the Mount Cameroon region by using merozoite surface protein 1 as a genetic marker. Blood samples were collected from asymptomatic children from three altitude zones (high, intermediate, and low). Parasitologic and entomologic indices were determined by microscopy and landing catch mosquito collection/circumsporozoite protein-enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, respectively. A total of 142 randomly selected P. falciparum-positive blood samples were genotyped by using a nested polymerase chain reaction-based technique. K-1 polymerase chain reaction products were also sequenced. As opposed to high altitude, the highest malaria prevalence (70.65%) and entomologic inoculation rate (2.43 infective/bites/night) were recorded at a low altitude site. Seven (18.91%), 22 (36.66%), and 19 (42.22%) samples from high, intermediate, and low altitudes, respectively, contained multiclonal infections. A new K-1 polymorphism was identified. This study shows a positive non-linear association between low/intermediate altitude (high malaria transmission) and an increase in P. falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 block 2 polymorphisms.

  1. Longitudinal evaluation of humoral immune response and merozoite surface antigen diversity in calves naturally infected with Babesia bovis, in São Paulo, Brazil. (United States)

    Matos, Carlos António; Gonçalves, Luiz Ricardo; Alvarez, Dasiel Obregón; Freschi, Carla Roberta; Silva, Jenevaldo Barbosa da; Val-Moraes, Silvana Pompeia; Mendes, Natalia Serra; André, Marcos Rogério; Machado, Rosangela Zacarias


    Babesiosis is an economically important infectious disease affecting cattle worldwide. In order to longitudinally evaluate the humoral immune response against Babesia bovis and the merozoite surface antigen diversity of B. bovis among naturally infected calves in Taiaçu, Brazil, serum and DNA samples from 15 calves were obtained quarterly, from their birth to 12 months of age. Anti-B. bovis IgG antibodies were detected by means of the indirect fluorescent antibody test (IFAT) and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was used to investigate the genetic diversity of B. bovis, based on the genes that encode merozoite surface antigens (MSA-1, MSA-2b and MSA-2c). The serological results demonstrated that up to six months of age, all the calves developed active immunity against B. bovis. Among the 75 DNA samples evaluated, 2, 4 and 5 sequences of the genes msa-1, msa-2b and msa-2c were obtained. The present study demonstrated that the msa-1 and msa-2b genes sequences amplified from blood DNA of calves positive to B. bovis from Taiaçu were genetically distinct, and that msa-2c was conserved. All animals were serologically positive to ELISA and IFAT, which used full repertoire of parasite antigens in despite of the genetic diversity of MSAs.

  2. Sarcocystis neurona merozoites express a family of immunogenic surface antigens that are orthologues of the Toxoplasma gondii surface antigens (SAGs) and SAG-related sequences. (United States)

    Howe, Daniel K; Gaji, Rajshekhar Y; Mroz-Barrett, Meaghan; Gubbels, Marc-Jan; Striepen, Boris; Stamper, Shelby


    Sarcocystis neurona is a member of the Apicomplexa that causes myelitis and encephalitis in horses but normally cycles between the opossum and small mammals. Analysis of an S. neurona expressed sequence tag (EST) database revealed four paralogous proteins that exhibit clear homology to the family of surface antigens (SAGs) and SAG-related sequences of Toxoplasma gondii. The primary peptide sequences of the S. neurona proteins are consistent with the two-domain structure that has been described for the T. gondii SAGs, and each was predicted to have an amino-terminal signal peptide and a carboxyl-terminal glycolipid anchor addition site, suggesting surface localization. All four proteins were confirmed to be membrane associated and displayed on the surface of S. neurona merozoites. Due to their surface localization and homology to T. gondii surface antigens, these S. neurona proteins were designated SnSAG1, SnSAG2, SnSAG3, and SnSAG4. Consistent with their homology, the SnSAGs elicited a robust immune response in infected and immunized animals, and their conserved structure further suggests that the SnSAGs similarly serve as adhesins for attachment to host cells. Whether the S. neurona SAG family is as extensive as the T. gondii SAG family remains unresolved, but it is probable that additional SnSAGs will be revealed as more S. neurona ESTs are generated. The existence of an SnSAG family in S. neurona indicates that expression of multiple related surface antigens is not unique to the ubiquitous organism T. gondii. Instead, the SAG gene family is a common trait that presumably has an essential, conserved function(s).

  3. Sarcocystis neurona Merozoites Express a Family of Immunogenic Surface Antigens That Are Orthologues of the Toxoplasma gondii Surface Antigens (SAGs) and SAG-Related Sequences† (United States)

    Howe, Daniel K.; Gaji, Rajshekhar Y.; Mroz-Barrett, Meaghan; Gubbels, Marc-Jan; Striepen, Boris; Stamper, Shelby


    Sarcocystis neurona is a member of the Apicomplexa that causes myelitis and encephalitis in horses but normally cycles between the opossum and small mammals. Analysis of an S. neurona expressed sequence tag (EST) database revealed four paralogous proteins that exhibit clear homology to the family of surface antigens (SAGs) and SAG-related sequences of Toxoplasma gondii. The primary peptide sequences of the S. neurona proteins are consistent with the two-domain structure that has been described for the T. gondii SAGs, and each was predicted to have an amino-terminal signal peptide and a carboxyl-terminal glycolipid anchor addition site, suggesting surface localization. All four proteins were confirmed to be membrane associated and displayed on the surface of S. neurona merozoites. Due to their surface localization and homology to T. gondii surface antigens, these S. neurona proteins were designated SnSAG1, SnSAG2, SnSAG3, and SnSAG4. Consistent with their homology, the SnSAGs elicited a robust immune response in infected and immunized animals, and their conserved structure further suggests that the SnSAGs similarly serve as adhesins for attachment to host cells. Whether the S. neurona SAG family is as extensive as the T. gondii SAG family remains unresolved, but it is probable that additional SnSAGs will be revealed as more S. neurona ESTs are generated. The existence of an SnSAG family in S. neurona indicates that expression of multiple related surface antigens is not unique to the ubiquitous organism T. gondii. Instead, the SAG gene family is a common trait that presumably has an essential, conserved function(s). PMID:15664946

  4. Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 - Glycosylation and localization to low-density, detergent-resistant membranes in the parasitized erythrocyte

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hoessli, D.C.; Poincelet, M.; Gupta, Ramneek


    In addition to the major carbohydrate moieties of the glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchor, we report that Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-1) bears O-GlcNAc modifications predominantly in beta-anomeric configuration, in both the C- and N-terminal portions of the protein....... Subcellular fractionation of parasitized erythrocytes in the late trophozoite/schizont stage reveals that GPI-anchored C-terminal fragments of MSP-1 are recovered in Triton X-100 resistant, low-density membrane fractions. Our results suggest that O -GlcNAc-modified MSP-1 N-terminal fragments tend to localize...... within the parasitophorous vacuolar membrane while GPI-anchored MSP-1 C-terminal fragments associate with low-density, Triton X-100 resistant membrane domains (rafts), redistribute in the parasitized erythrocyte and are eventually shed as membrane vesicles that also contain the endogenous, GPI-linked CD...

  5. Genetic diversity in the C-terminus of merozoite surface protein 1 among Plasmodium knowlesi isolates from Selangor and Sabah Borneo, Malaysia. (United States)

    Yap, Nan Jiun; Goh, Xiang Ting; Koehler, Anson V; William, Timothy; Yeo, Tsin Wen; Vythilingam, Indra; Gasser, Robin B; Lim, Yvonne A L


    Plasmodium knowlesi, a malaria parasite of macaques, has emerged as an important parasite of humans. Despite the significance of P. knowlesi malaria in parts of Southeast Asia, very little is known about the genetic variation in this parasite. Our aim here was to explore sequence variation in a molecule called the 42kDa merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1), which is found on the surface of blood stages of Plasmodium spp. and plays a key role in erythrocyte invasion. Several studies of P. falciparum have reported that the C-terminus (a 42kDa fragment) of merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1 42 ; consisting of MSP-1 19 and MSP-1 33 ) is a potential candidate for a malaria vaccine. However, to date, no study has yet investigated the sequence diversity of the gene encoding P. knowlesi MSP-1 42 (comprising Pk-msp-1 19 and Pk-msp-1 33 ) among isolates in Malaysia. The present study explored this aspect. Twelve P. knowlesi isolates were collected from patients from hospitals in Selangor and Sabah Borneo, Malaysia, between 2012 and 2014. The Pk-msp-1 42 gene was amplified by PCR and directly sequenced. Haplotype diversity (Hd) and nucleotide diversity (л) were studied among the isolates. There was relatively high genetic variation among P. knowlesi isolates; overall Hd and л were 1±0.034 and 0.01132±0.00124, respectively. A total of nine different haplotypes related to amino acid alterations at 13 positions, and the Pk-MSP-1 19 sequence was found to be more conserved than Pk-msp-1 33 . We have found evidence for negative selection in Pk-msp- 42 as well as the 33kDa and 19kDa fragments by comparing the rate of non-synonymous versus synonymous substitutions. Future investigations should study large numbers of samples from disparate geographical locations to critically assess whether this molecule might be a potential vaccine target for P. knowlesi. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Heterogeneous genetic diversity pattern in Plasmodium vivax genes encoding merozoite surface proteins (MSP) -7E, -7F and -7L. (United States)

    Garzón-Ospina, Diego; Forero-Rodríguez, Johanna; Patarroyo, Manuel A


    The msp-7 gene has become differentially expanded in the Plasmodium genus; Plasmodium vivax has the highest copy number of this gene, several of which encode antigenic proteins in merozoites. DNA sequences from thirty-six Colombian clinical isolates from P. vivax (pv) msp-7E, -7F and -7L genes were analysed for characterizing and studying the genetic diversity of these pvmsp-7 members which are expressed during the intra-erythrocyte stage; natural selection signals producing the variation pattern so observed were evaluated. The pvmsp-7E gene was highly polymorphic compared to pvmsp-7F and pvmsp-7L which were seen to have limited genetic diversity; pvmsp-7E polymorphism was seen to have been maintained by different types of positive selection. Even though these copies seemed to be species-specific duplications, a search in the Plasmodium cynomolgi genome (P. vivax sister taxon) showed that both species shared the whole msp-7 repertoire. This led to exploring the long-term effect of natural selection by comparing the orthologous sequences which led to finding signatures for lineage-specific positive selection. The results confirmed that the P. vivax msp-7 family has a heterogeneous genetic diversity pattern; some members are highly conserved whilst others are highly diverse. The results suggested that the 3'-end of these genes encode MSP-7 proteins' functional region whilst the central region of pvmsp-7E has evolved rapidly. The lineage-specific positive selection signals found suggested that mutations occurring in msp-7s genes during host switch may have succeeded in adapting the ancestral P. vivax parasite population to humans.

  7. The Suitability of P. falciparum Merozoite Surface Proteins 1 and 2 as Genetic Markers for In Vivo Drug Trials in Yemen (United States)

    Al-abd, Nazeh M.; Mahdy, Mohammed A. K.; Al-Mekhlafi, Abdulsalam M. Q.; Snounou, Georges; Abdul-Majid, Nazia B.; Al-Mekhlafi, Hesham M.; Fong, Mun Y.


    Background The accuracy of the conclusions from in vivo efficacy anti-malarial drug trials depends on distinguishing between recrudescences and re-infections which is accomplished by genotyping genes coding P. falciparum merozoite surface 1 (MSP1) and MSP2. However, the reliability of the PCR analysis depends on the genetic markers’ allelic diversity and variant frequency. In this study the genetic diversity of the genes coding for MSP1 and MSP2 was obtained for P. falciparum parasites circulating in Yemen. Methods Blood samples were collected from 511 patients with fever and screened for malaria parasites using Giemsa-stained blood films. A total 74 samples were infected with P. falciparum, and the genetic diversity was assessed by nested PCR targeting Pfmsp1 (Block2) and Pfmsp2 (block 3). Results Overall, 58%, 28% and 54% of the isolates harboured parasites of the Pfmsp1 K1, MAD20 and RO33 allelic families, and 55% and 89% harboured those of the Pfmsp2 FC27 and 3D7 allelic families, respectively. For both genetic makers, the multiplicity of the infection (MOI) was significantly higher in the isolates from the foothills/coastland areas as compared to those from the highland (PYemen Pfmsp1 should not be used for PCR correction of in vivo clinical trials outcomes, and that caution should be exercised when employing Pfmsp2. PMID:23861823

  8. Identification of a rare point mutation at C-terminus of merozoite surface antigen-1 gene of Plasmodium falciparum in eastern Indian isolates. (United States)

    Raj, Dipak Kumar; Das, Bibhu Ranjan; Dash, A P; Supakar, Prakash C


    Merozoite surface antigen-1 (MSA-1) of Plasmodium falciparum is highly immunogenic in human. Several studies suggest that MSA-1 protein is an effective target for a protective immune response. Attempt has been made to find new point mutations by analyzing 244 bp [codon 1655(R) to 1735 (I)] relatively conserved C-terminus region of MSA-1 gene in 125 isolates. This region contains two EGF like domains, which are involved in generating protective immune response in human. Point mutations in this region are very much important in view of vaccine development. Searching of mutational hot spots in MSA-1 protein by sequencing method in a representative number of isolates is quite critical and expensive. Therefore, in this study slot blot and PCR-SSCP method have been used to find out new mutations in the individual isolates showing alterations in the mobility of DNA fragment. Sequencing of the altered bands from the SSCP gel shows a rare non-synonymous point mutation in 7 (5.6%) of the 125 isolates at amino acid position 1704 of MSA-1 gene where isoleucine is replaced by valine.

  9. Genetic Diversity of Plasmodium falciparum Field Isolates in Central Sudan Inferred by PCR Genotyping of Merozoite Surface Protein 1 and 2. (United States)

    Hamid, Muzamil M Abdel; Mohammed, Sara B; El Hassan, Ibrahim M


    Characterization of Plasmodium falciparum diversity is commonly achieved by amplification of the polymorphic regions of the merozoite surface proteins 1 (MSP1) and 2 (MSP2) genes. The present study aimed to determine the allelic variants distribution of MSP1 and MSP2 and multiplicity of infection in P. falciparum field isolates from Kosti, central Sudan, an area characterized by seasonal malaria transmission. Total 121 samples (N = 121) were collected during a cross-sectional survey between March and April 2003. DNA was extracted and MSP1 and MSP2 polymorphic loci were genotyped. The total number of alleles identified in MSP1 block 2 was 11, while 16 alleles were observed in MSP2 block 3. In MSP1, RO33 was found to be the predominant allelic type, carried alone or in combination with MAD20 and K1 types, whereas FC27 family was the most prevalent in MSP2. Sixty two percent of isolates had multiple genotypes and the overall mean multiplicity of infection was 1.93 (CI 95% 1.66-2.20). Age correlated with parasite density (P = 0.017). In addition, a positive correlation was observed between parasite densities and the number of alleles (P = 0.022). Genetic diversity in P. falciparum field isolates in central Sudan was high and consisted of multiple clones.

  10. The evolution and diversity of a low complexity vaccine candidate, merozoite surface protein 9 (MSP-9), in Plasmodium vivax and closely related species. (United States)

    Chenet, Stella M; Pacheco, M Andreína; Bacon, David J; Collins, William E; Barnwell, John W; Escalante, Ananias A


    The merozoite surface protein-9 (MSP-9) has been considered a target for an anti-malarial vaccine since it is one of many proteins involved in the erythrocyte invasion, a critical step in the parasite life cycle. Orthologs encoding this antigen have been found in all known species of Plasmodium parasitic to primates. In order to characterize and investigate the extent and maintenance of MSP-9 genetic diversity, we analyzed DNA sequences of the following malaria parasite species: Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium reichenowi, Plasmodium chabaudi, Plasmodium yoelii, Plasmodium berghei, Plasmodium coatneyi, Plasmodium gonderi, Plasmodium knowlesi, Plasmodium inui, Plasmodium simiovale, Plasmodium fieldi, Plasmodium cynomolgi and Plasmodium vivax and evaluated the signature of natural selection in all MSP-9 orthologs. Our findings suggest that the gene encoding MSP-9 is under purifying selection in P. vivax and closely related species. We further explored how selection affected different regions of MSP-9 by comparing the polymorphisms in P. vivax and P. falciparum, and found contrasting patterns between these two species that suggest differences in functional constraints. This observation implies that the MSP-9 orthologs in human parasites may interact differently with the host immune response. Thus, studies carried out in one species cannot be directly translated into the other. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum isolates from naturally infected children in north-central Nigeria using the merozoite surface protein-2 as molecular marker. (United States)

    Oyedeji, Segun Isaac; Awobode, Henrietta Oluwatoyin; Anumudu, Chiaka; Kun, Jürgen


    To characterize the genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum (P. falciparum) field isolates in children from Lafia, North-central Nigeria, using the highly polymorphic P. falciparum merozoite surface protein 2 (MSP-2) gene as molecular marker. Three hundred and twenty children were enrolled into the study between 2005 and 2006. These included 140 children who presented with uncomplicated malaria at the Dalhatu Araf Specialist Hospital, Lafia and another 180 children from the study area with asymptomatic infection. DNA was extracted from blood spot on filter paper and MSP-2 genes were genotyped using allele-specific nested PCR in order to analyze the genetic diversity of parasite isolates. A total of 31 and 34 distinct MSP-2 alleles were identified in the asymptomatic and uncomplicated malaria groups respectively. No difference was found between the multiplicity of infection in the asymptomatic group and that of the uncomplicated malaria group (P>0.05). However, isolates of the FC27 allele type were dominant in the asymptomatic group whereas isolates of the 3D7 allele type were dominant in the uncomplicated malaria group. This study showed a high genetic diversity of P. falciparum isolates in North-central Nigeria and is comparable to reports from similar areas with high malaria transmission intensity. Copyright © 2013 Hainan Medical College. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. The genetic diversity of merozoite surface antigen 1 (MSA-1) among Babesia bovis detected from cattle populations in Thailand, Brazil and Ghana. (United States)

    Nagano, Daisuke; Sivakumar, Thillaiampalam; De De Macedo, Alane Caine Costa; Inpankaew, Tawin; Alhassan, Andy; Igarashi, Ikuo; Yokoyama, Naoaki


    In the present study, we screened blood DNA samples obtained from cattle bred in Brazil (n=164) and Ghana (n=80) for Babesia bovis using a diagnostic PCR assay and found prevalences of 14.6% and 46.3%, respectively. Subsequently, the genetic diversity of B. bovis in Thailand, Brazil and Ghana was analyzed, based on the DNA sequence of merozoite surface antigen-1 (MSA-1). In Thailand, MSA-1 sequences were relatively conserved and found in a single clade of the phylogram, while Brazilian MSA-1 sequences showed high genetic diversity and were dispersed across three different clades. In contrast, the sequences from Ghanaian samples were detected in two different clades, one of which contained only a single Ghanaian sequence. The identities among the MSA-1 sequences from Thailand, Brazil and Ghana were 99.0-100%, 57.5-99.4% and 60.3-100%, respectively, while the similarities among the deduced MSA-1 amino acid sequences within the respective countries were 98.4-100%, 59.4-99.7% and 58.7-100%, respectively. These observations suggested that the genetic diversity of B. bovis based on MSA-1 sequences was higher in Brazil and Ghana than in Thailand. The current data highlight the importance of conducting extensive studies on the genetic diversity of B. bovis before designing immune control strategies in each surveyed country.

  13. Genetic Diversity and Natural Selection in 42 kDa Region of Plasmodium vivax Merozoite Surface Protein-1 from China-Myanmar Endemic Border. (United States)

    Zhou, Xia; Tambo, Ernest; Su, Jing; Fang, Qiang; Ruan, Wei; Chen, Jun-Hu; Yin, Ming-Bo; Zhou, Xiao-Nong


    Plasmodium vivax merozoite surface protein-1 (PvMSP1) gene codes for a major malaria vaccine candidate antigen. However, its polymorphic nature represents an obstacle to the design of a protective vaccine. In this study, we analyzed the genetic polymorphism and natural selection of the C-terminal 42 kDa fragment within PvMSP1 gene (Pv MSP142) from 77 P. vivax isolates, collected from imported cases of China-Myanmar border (CMB) areas in Yunnan province and the inland cases from Anhui, Yunnan, and Zhejiang province in China during 2009-2012. Totally, 41 haplotypes were identified and 30 of them were new haplotypes. The differences between the rates of non-synonymous and synonymous mutations suggest that PvMSP142 has evolved under natural selection, and a high selective pressure preferentially acted on regions identified of PvMSP133. Our results also demonstrated that PvMSP142 of P. vivax isolates collected on China-Myanmar border areas display higher genetic polymorphisms than those collected from inland of China. Such results have significant implications for understanding the dynamic of the P. vivax population and may be useful information towards China malaria elimination campaign strategies.

  14. A polyvalent hybrid protein elicits antibodies against the diverse allelic types of block 2 in Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1. (United States)

    Tetteh, Kevin K A; Conway, David J


    Merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP1) of Plasmodium falciparum has been implicated as an important target of acquired immunity, and candidate components for a vaccine include polymorphic epitopes in the N-terminal polymorphic block 2 region. We designed a polyvalent hybrid recombinant protein incorporating sequences of the three major allelic types of block 2 together with a composite repeat sequence of one of the types and N-terminal flanking T cell epitopes, and compared this with a series of recombinant proteins containing modular sub-components and similarly expressed in Escherichia coli. Immunogenicity of the full polyvalent hybrid protein was tested in both mice and rabbits, and comparative immunogenicity studies of the sub-component modules were performed in mice. The full hybrid protein induced high titre antibodies against each of the major block 2 allelic types expressed as separate recombinant proteins and against a wide range of allelic types naturally expressed by a panel of diverse P. falciparum isolates, while the sub-component modules had partial antigenic coverage as expected. This encourages further development and evaluation of the full MSP1 block 2 polyvalent hybrid protein as a candidate blood-stage component of a malaria vaccine. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Molecular characterization of Plasmodium falciparum in Arunachal Pradesh from Northeast India based on merozoite surface protein 1 & glutamate-rich protein. (United States)

    Sarmah, Nilanju Pran; Sarma, Kishore; Bhattacharyya, Dibya Ranjan; Sultan, Ali; Bansal, Devendra; Singh, Neeru; Bharti, Praveen K; Kaur, Hargobinder; Sehgal, Rakesh; Mohapatra, Pradyumna Kishore; Mahanta, Jagadish


    Northeast (NE) India is one of the high endemic regions for malaria with a preponderance of Plasmodium falciparum, resulting in high morbidity and mortality. The P. falciparum parasite of this region showed high polymorphism in drug-resistant molecular biomarkers. However, there is a paucity of information related to merozoite surface protein 1 (msp-1) and glutamate-rich protein (glurp) which have been extensively studied in various parts of the world. The present study was, therefore, aimed at investigating the genetic diversity of P. falciparum based on msp-1 and glurp in Arunachal Pradesh, a State in NE India. Two hundred and forty nine patients with fever were screened for malaria, of whom 75 were positive for P. falciparum. Blood samples were collected from each microscopically confirmed patient. The DNA was extracted; nested polymerase chain reaction and sequencing were performed to study the genetic diversity of msp-1 (block 2) and glurp. The block 2 of msp-1 gene was found to be highly polymorphic, and overall allelic distribution showed that RO33 was the dominant allele (63%), followed by MAD20 (29%) and K1 (8%) alleles. However, an extensive diversity (9 alleles and 4 genotypes) and 6-10 repeat regions exclusively of R2 type were observed in glurp. The P. falciparum population of NE India was diverse which might be responsible for higher plasticity leading to the survival of the parasite and in turn to the higher endemicity of falciparum malaria of this region.

  16. Low level of sequence diversity at merozoite surface protein-1 locus of Plasmodium ovale curtisi and P. ovale wallikeri from Thai isolates. (United States)

    Putaporntip, Chaturong; Hughes, Austin L; Jongwutiwes, Somchai


    The merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1) is a candidate target for the development of blood stage vaccines against malaria. Polymorphism in MSP-1 can be useful as a genetic marker for strain differentiation in malarial parasites. Although sequence diversity in the MSP-1 locus has been extensively analyzed in field isolates of Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax, the extent of variation in its homologues in P. ovale curtisi and P. ovale wallikeri, remains unknown. Analysis of the mitochondrial cytochrome b sequences of 10 P. ovale isolates from symptomatic malaria patients from diverse endemic areas of Thailand revealed co-existence of P. ovale curtisi (n = 5) and P. ovale wallikeri (n = 5). Direct sequencing of the PCR-amplified products encompassing the entire coding region of MSP-1 of P. ovale curtisi (PocMSP-1) and P. ovale wallikeri (PowMSP-1) has identified 3 imperfect repeated segments in the former and one in the latter. Most amino acid differences between these proteins were located in the interspecies variable domains of malarial MSP-1. Synonymous nucleotide diversity (πS) exceeded nonsynonymous nucleotide diversity (πN) for both PocMSP-1 and PowMSP-1, albeit at a non-significant level. However, when MSP-1 of both these species was considered together, πS was significantly greater than πN (pdiversity at this locus prior to speciation. Phylogenetic analysis based on conserved domains has placed PocMSP-1 and PowMSP-1 in a distinct bifurcating branch that probably diverged from each other around 4.5 million years ago. The MSP-1 sequences support that P. ovale curtisi and P. ovale wallikeri are distinct species. Both species are sympatric in Thailand. The low level of sequence diversity in PocMSP-1 and PowMSP-1 among Thai isolates could stem from persistent low prevalence of these species, limiting the chance of outcrossing at this locus.

  17. Release of hepatic Plasmodium yoelii merozoites into the pulmonary microvasculature.

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    Kerstin Baer


    Full Text Available Plasmodium undergoes one round of multiplication in the liver prior to invading erythrocytes and initiating the symptomatic blood phase of the malaria infection. Productive hepatocyte infection by sporozoites leads to the generation of thousands of merozoites capable of erythrocyte invasion. Merozoites are released from infected hepatocytes as merosomes, packets of hundreds of parasites surrounded by host cell membrane. Intravital microscopy of green fluorescent protein-expressing P. yoelii parasites showed that the majority of merosomes exit the liver intact, adapt a relatively uniform size of 12-18 microm, and contain 100-200 merozoites. Merosomes survived the subsequent passage through the right heart undamaged and accumulated in the lungs. Merosomes were absent from blood harvested from the left ventricle and from tail vein blood, indicating that the lungs effectively cleared the blood from all large parasite aggregates. Accordingly, merosomes were not detectable in major organs such as brain, kidney, and spleen. The failure of annexin V to label merosomes collected from hepatic effluent indicates that phosphatidylserine is not exposed on the surface of the merosome membrane suggesting the infected hepatocyte did not undergo apoptosis prior to merosome release. Merosomal merozoites continued to express green fluorescent protein and did not incorporate propidium iodide or YO-PRO-1 indicating parasite viability and an intact merosome membrane. Evidence of merosomal merozoite infectivity was provided by hepatic effluent containing merosomes being significantly more infective than blood with an identical low-level parasitemia. Ex vivo analysis showed that merosomes eventually disintegrate inside pulmonary capillaries, thus liberating merozoites into the bloodstream. We conclude that merosome packaging protects hepatic merozoites from phagocytic attack by sinusoidal Kupffer cells, and that release into the lung microvasculature enhances the

  18. Enamel surface remineralization: Using synthetic nanohydroxyapatite

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    J Shanti Swarup


    Full Text Available Objective: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of synthetically processed hydroxyapatite particles in remineralization of the early enamel lesions in comparison with 2% sodium fluoride. Materials and Methods: Thirty sound human premolars were divided into nanohydroxyapatite group (n0 = 15 and the sodium fluoride group (n = 15. The specimens were subjected to demineralization before being coated with 10% aqueous slurry of 20 nm nanohydroxyapatite or 2% sodium fluoride. The remineralizing efficacy of the materials was evaluated using surface microhardness (SMH measurements, scanning microscopic analysis and analysis of the Ca/P ratio of the surface enamel. Data analysis was carried out using paired t-test and independent t-test. Results: The results showed that the nanohydroxyapatite group produced a surface morphology close to the biologic enamel, the increase in mineral content (Ca/P ratio was more significant in the nanohydroxyapatite group ( P 0.05. Conclusion: The use of biomimetic nanohydroxyapatite as a remineralizing agent holds promise as a new synthetic enamel biocompatible material to repair early carious lesions.

  19. Lineage-specific positive selection at the merozoite surface protein 1 (msp1 locus of Plasmodium vivax and related simian malaria parasites

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    Kawai Satoru


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The 200 kDa merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-1 of malaria parasites, a strong vaccine candidate, plays a key role during erythrocyte invasion and is a target of host protective immune response. Plasmodium vivax, the most widespread human malaria parasite, is closely related to parasites that infect Asian Old World monkeys, and has been considered to have become a parasite of man by host switch from a macaque malaria parasite. Several Asian monkey parasites have a range of natural hosts. The same parasite species shows different disease manifestations among host species. This suggests that host immune responses to P. vivax-related malaria parasites greatly differ among host species (albeit other factors. It is thus tempting to invoke that a major immune target parasite protein such as MSP-1 underwent unique evolution, depending on parasite species that exhibit difference in host range and host specificity. Results We performed comparative phylogenetic and population genetic analyses of the gene encoding MSP-1 (msp1 from P. vivax and nine P. vivax-related simian malaria parasites. The inferred phylogenetic tree of msp1 significantly differed from that of the mitochondrial genome, with a striking displacement of P. vivax from a position close to P. cynomolgi in the mitochondrial genome tree to an outlier of Asian monkey parasites. Importantly, positive selection was inferred for two ancestral branches, one leading to P. inui and P. hylobati and the other leading to P. vivax, P. fieldi and P. cynomolgi. This ancestral positive selection was estimated to have occurred three to six million years ago, coinciding with the period of radiation of Asian macaques. Comparisons of msp1 polymorphisms between P. vivax, P. inui and P. cynomolgi revealed that while some positively selected amino acid sites or regions are shared by these parasites, amino acid changes greatly differ, suggesting that diversifying selection is acting species

  20. Changes in B Cell Populations and Merozoite Surface Protein-1-Specific Memory B Cell Responses after Prolonged Absence of Detectable P. falciparum Infection.

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    Cyrus Ayieko

    Full Text Available Clinical immunity to malaria declines in the absence of repeated parasite exposure. However, little is known about how B cell populations and antigen-specific memory B cells change in the absence of P. falciparum infection. A successful indoor residual insecticide spraying campaign in a highland area of western Kenya, led to an absence of blood-stage P. falciparum infection between March 2007 and April 2008. We assessed memory B cell responses in 45 adults at the beginning (April 2008 and end (April 2009 of a subsequent 12-month period during which none of the adults had evidence of asymptomatic parasitemia or clinical disease. Antibodies and memory B cells to the 42-kDa portion of the merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-142 were measured using ELISA and ELISPOT assays, respectively. B cell populations were characterized by flow cytometry. From 2008 to 2009, the prevalence of MSP-142-specific memory B cells (45% vs. 55%, respectively, P = 0.32 or antibodies (91% vs. 82%, respectively, P = 0.32 did not differ significantly, although specific individuals did change from positive to negative and vice versa, particularly for memory B cells, suggesting possible low-level undetected parasitemia may have occurred in some individuals. The magnitude of MSP-142-specific memory B cells and levels of antibodies to MSP-142 also did not differ from 2008 to 2009 (P>0.10 for both. However, from 2008 to 2009 the proportions of both class-switched atypical (CD19+IgD-CD27-CD21-IgM- and class-switched activated (CD19+IgD-CD27+CD21-IgM- memory B cells decreased (both P<0.001. In contrast, class-switched resting classical memory B cells (CD19+IgD-CD27+CD21+IgM- increased (P<0.001. In this area of seasonal malaria transmission, a one- year absence of detectable P. falciparum infection was not associated with changes in the prevalence or level of MSP-142 specific memory B cells, but was associated with major changes in overall memory B cell subsets.

  1. Extensive diversity in the allelic frequency of Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface proteins and glutamate-rich protein in rural and urban settings of southwestern Nigeria. (United States)

    Funwei, Roland I; Thomas, Bolaji N; Falade, Catherine O; Ojurongbe, Olusola


    Nigeria carries a high burden of malaria which makes continuous surveillance for current information on genetic diversity imperative. In this study, the merozoite surface proteins (msp-1, msp-2) and glutamate-rich protein (glurp) of Plasmodium falciparum collected from two communities representing rural and urban settings in Ibadan, southwestern Nigeria were analysed. A total of 511 febrile children, aged 3-59 months, whose parents/guardians provided informed consent, were recruited into the study. Capillary blood was obtained for malaria rapid diagnostic test, thick blood smears for parasite count and blood spots on filter paper for molecular analysis. Three-hundred and nine samples were successfully genotyped for msp-1, msp-2 and glurp genes. The allelic distribution of the three genes was not significantly different in the rural and urban communities. R033 and 3D7 were the most prevalent alleles in both rural and urban communities for msp-1 and msp-2, respectively. Eleven of glurp RII region genotypes, coded I-XII, with sizes ranging from 500 to 1100 base pairs were detected in the rural setting. Genotype XI (1000-1050 bp) had the highest prevalence of 41.5 and 38.5% in rural and urban settings, respectively. Overall, 82.1 and 70.0% of samples had multiclonal infection with msp-1 gene resulting in a mean multiplicity of infection (MOI) of 2.8 and 2.6 for rural and urban samples, respectively. Msp-1 and msp-2 genes displayed higher levels of diversity and higher MOI rates than the glurp gene. Significant genetic diversity was observed between rural and urban parasite populations in Ibadan, southwestern Nigeria. The results of this study show that malaria transmission intensity in these regions is still high. No significant difference was observed between rural and urban settings, except for a completely different msp-1 allele, compared to previous reports, thereby confirming the changing face of malaria transmission in these communities. This study provides

  2. Long-term clinical protection from falciparum malaria is strongly associated with IgG3 antibodies to merozoite surface protein 3.

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    Christian Roussilhon


    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Surrogate markers of protective immunity to malaria in humans are needed to rationalize malaria vaccine discovery and development. In an effort to identify such markers, and thereby provide a clue to the complex equation malaria vaccine development is facing, we investigated the relationship between protection acquired through exposure in the field with naturally occurring immune responses (i.e., induced by the parasite to molecules that are considered as valuable vaccine candidates. METHODS AND FINDINGS: We analyzed, under comparative conditions, the antibody responses of each of six isotypes to five leading malaria vaccine candidates in relation to protection acquired by exposure to natural challenges in 217 of the 247 inhabitants of the African village of Dielmo, Senegal (96 children and 121 older adolescents and adults. The status of susceptibility or resistance to malaria was determined by active case detection performed daily by medical doctors over 6 y from a unique follow-up study of this village. Of the 30 immune responses measured, only one, antibodies of the IgG3 isotype directed to merozoite surface protein 3 (MSP3, was strongly associated with clinical protection against malaria in all age groups, i.e., independently of age. This immunological parameter had a higher statistical significance than the sickle cell trait, the strongest factor of protection known against Plasmodium falciparum. A single determination of antibody was significantly associated with the clinical outcome over six consecutive years in children submitted to massive natural parasite challenges by mosquitoes (over three parasite inoculations per week. Finally, the target epitopes of these antibodies were found to be fully conserved. CONCLUSIONS: Since anti-MSP3 IgG3 antibodies can naturally develop along with protection against P. falciparum infection in young children, our results provide the encouraging indication that these antibodies should be

  3. Gliding motility of Babesia bovis merozoites visualized by time-lapse video microscopy.

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    Masahito Asada

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Babesia bovis is an apicomplexan intraerythrocytic protozoan parasite that induces babesiosis in cattle after transmission by ticks. During specific stages of the apicomplexan parasite lifecycle, such as the sporozoites of Plasmodium falciparum and tachyzoites of Toxoplasma gondii, host cells are targeted for invasion using a unique, active process termed "gliding motility". However, it is not thoroughly understood how the merozoites of B. bovis target and invade host red blood cells (RBCs, and gliding motility has so far not been observed in the parasite. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Gliding motility of B. bovis merozoites was revealed by time-lapse video microscopy. The recorded images revealed that the process included egress of the merozoites from the infected RBC, gliding motility, and subsequent invasion into new RBCs. The gliding motility of B. bovis merozoites was similar to the helical gliding of Toxoplasma tachyzoites. The trails left by the merozoites were detected by indirect immunofluorescence assay using antiserum against B. bovis merozoite surface antigen 1. Inhibition of gliding motility by actin filament polymerization or depolymerization indicated that the gliding motility was driven by actomyosin dependent process. In addition, we revealed the timing of breakdown of the parasitophorous vacuole. Time-lapse image analysis of membrane-stained bovine RBCs showed formation and breakdown of the parasitophorous vacuole within ten minutes of invasion. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This is the first report of the gliding motility of B. bovis. Since merozoites of Plasmodium parasites do not glide on a substrate, the gliding motility of B. bovis merozoites is a notable finding.

  4. Diversity and population structure of Plasmodium falciparum in Thailand based on the spatial and temporal haplotype patterns of the C-terminal 19-kDa domain of merozoite surface protein-1. (United States)

    Simpalipan, Phumin; Pattaradilokrat, Sittiporn; Siripoon, Napaporn; Seugorn, Aree; Kaewthamasorn, Morakot; Butcher, Robert D J; Harnyuttanakorn, Pongchai


    The 19-kDa C-terminal region of the merozoite surface protein-1 of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum (PfMSP-119) constitutes the major component on the surface of merozoites and is considered as one of the leading candidates for asexual blood stage vaccines. Because the protein exhibits a level of sequence variation that may compromise the effectiveness of a vaccine, the global sequence diversity of PfMSP-119 has been subjected to extensive research, especially in malaria endemic areas. In Thailand, PfMSP-119 sequences have been derived from a single parasite population in Tak province, located along the Thailand-Myanmar border, since 1995. However, the extent of sequence variation and the spatiotemporal patterns of the MSP-119 haplotypes along the Thai borders with Laos and Cambodia are unknown. Sixty-three isolates of P. falciparum from five geographically isolated populations along the Thai borders with Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia in three transmission seasons between 2002 and 2008 were collected and culture-adapted. The msp-1 gene block 17 was sequenced and analysed for the allelic diversity, frequency and distribution patterns of PfMSP-119 haplotypes in individual populations. The PfMSP-119 haplotype patterns were then compared between parasite populations to infer the population structure and genetic differentiation of the malaria parasite. Five conserved polymorphic positions, which accounted for five distinct haplotypes, of PfMSP-119 were identified. Differences in the prevalence of PfMSP-119 haplotypes were detected in different geographical regions, with the highest levels of genetic diversity being found in the Kanchanaburi and Ranong provinces along the Thailand-Myanmar border and Trat province located at the Thailand-Cambodia border. Despite this variability, the distribution patterns of individual PfMSP-119 haplotypes seemed to be very similar across the country and over the three malarial transmission seasons, suggesting that gene flow

  5. A Reduced Risk of Infection with Plasmodium vivax and Clinical Protection against Malaria Are Associated with Antibodies against the N Terminus but Not the C Terminus of Merozoite Surface Protein 1† (United States)

    Nogueira, Paulo Afonso; Piovesan Alves, Fabiana; Fernandez-Becerra, Carmen; Pein, Oliver; Rodrigues Santos, Neida; Pereira da Silva, Luiz Hildebrando; Plessman Camargo, Erney; del Portillo, Hernando A.


    Progress towards the development of a malaria vaccine against Plasmodium vivax, the most widely distributed human malaria parasite, will require a better understanding of the immune responses that confer clinical protection to patients in regions where malaria is endemic. The occurrence of clinical protection in P. vivax malaria in Brazil was first reported among residents of the riverine community of Portuchuelo, in Rondônia, western Amazon. We thus analyzed immune sera from this same human population to determine if naturally acquired humoral immune responses against the merozoite surface protein 1 of P. vivax, PvMSP1, could be associated with reduced risk of infection and/or clinical protection. Our results demonstrated that this association could be established with anti-PvMSP1 antibodies predominantly of the immunoglobulin G3 subclass directed against the N terminus but not against the C terminus, in spite of the latter being more immunogenic and capable of natural boosting. This is the first report of a prospective study of P. vivax malaria demonstrating an association of reduced risk of infection and clinical protection with antibodies against an antigen of this parasite. PMID:16622209

  6. Advancing Sustainable Catalysis with Magnetite Surface Modification and Synthetic Applications (United States)

    This article surveys the recent developments in the synthesis, surface modification, and synthetic applications of magnetitenanoparticles. The emergence of iron(II,III) oxide (triiron tetraoxide or magnetite; Fe3O4, or FeO•Fe2O3) nanoparticles as a sustainable support in heteroge...

  7. Poly(I:C) adjuvant strongly enhances parasite-inhibitory antibodies and Th1 response against Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein-1 (42-kDa fragment) in BALB/c mice. (United States)

    Mehrizi, Akram Abouie; Rezvani, Niloufar; Zakeri, Sedigheh; Gholami, Atefeh; Babaeekhou, Laleh


    Malaria vaccine development has been confronted with various challenges such as poor immunogenicity of malaria vaccine candidate antigens, which is considered as the main challenge. However, this problem can be managed using appropriate formulations of antigens and adjuvants. Poly(I:C) is a potent Th1 inducer and a human compatible adjuvant capable of stimulating both B- and T-cell immunity. Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 42 (PfMSP-1 42 ) is a promising vaccine candidate for blood stage of malaria that has faced several difficulties in clinical trials, mainly due to improper adjuvants. Therefore, in the current study, poly(I:C), as a potent Th1 inducer adjuvant, was evaluated to improve the immunogenicity of recombinant PfMSP-1 42 , when compared to CFA/IFA, as reference adjuvant. Poly(I:C) produced high level and titers of anti-PfMSP-1 42 IgG antibodies in which was comparable to CFA/IFA adjuvant. In addition, PfMSP-1 42 formulated with poly(I:C) elicited a higher ratio of IFN-γ/IL-4 (23.9) and IgG2a/IgG1 (3.77) with more persistent, higher avidity, and titer of IgG2a relative to CFA/IFA, indicating a potent Th1 immune response. Poly(I:C) could also help to induce anti-PfMSP-1 42 antibodies with higher growth-inhibitory activity than CFA/IFA. Altogether, the results of the current study demonstrated that poly(I:C) is a potent adjuvant that can be appropriate for being used in PfMSP-1 42 -based vaccine formulations.

  8. Synthetic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Maria Manferdini


    Full Text Available Traditionally materials have been associated with a series of physical properties that can be used as inputs to production and manufacturing. Recently we witnessed an interest in materials considered not only as ‘true matter’, but also as new breeds where geometry, texture, tooling and finish are able to provoke new sensations when they are applied to a substance. These artificial materials can be described as synthetic because they are the outcome of various qualities that are not necessarily true to the original matter, but they are the combination of two or more parts, whether by design or by natural processes. The aim of this paper is to investigate the potential of architectural surfaces to produce effects through the invention of new breeds of artificial matter, using micro-scale details derived from Nature as an inspiration.

  9. Effect of malaria transmission reduction by insecticide-treated bed nets (ITNs) on the genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein (MSP-1) and circumsporozoite (CSP) in western Kenya. (United States)

    Kariuki, Simon K; Njunge, James; Muia, Ann; Muluvi, Geofrey; Gatei, Wangeci; Ter Kuile, Feiko; Terlouw, Dianne J; Hawley, William A; Phillips-Howard, Penelope A; Nahlen, Bernard L; Lindblade, Kim A; Hamel, Mary J; Slutsker, Laurence; Shi, Ya Ping


    Although several studies have investigated the impact of reduced malaria transmission due to insecticide-treated bed nets (ITNs) on the patterns of morbidity and mortality, there is limited information on their effect on parasite diversity. Sequencing was used to investigate the effect of ITNs on polymorphisms in two genes encoding leading Plasmodium falciparum vaccine candidate antigens, the 19 kilodalton blood stage merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1(19kDa)) and the Th2R and Th3R T-cell epitopes of the pre-erythrocytic stage circumsporozoite protein (CSP) in a large community-based ITN trial site in western Kenya. The number and frequency of haplotypes as well as nucleotide and haplotype diversity were compared among parasites obtained from children diversity of > 0.7. No MSP-1(19kDa) 3D7 sequence-types were detected in 1996 and the frequency was less than 4% in 2001. The CSP Th2R and Th3R domains were highly polymorphic with a total of 26 and 14 haplotypes, respectively detected in 1996 and 34 and 13 haplotypes in 2001, with an overall haplotype diversity of > 0.9 and 0.75 respectively. The frequency of the most predominant Th2R and Th3R haplotypes was 14 and 36%, respectively. The frequency of Th2R and Th3R haplotypes corresponding to the 3D7 parasite strain was less than 4% at both time points. There was no significant difference in nucleotide and haplotype diversity in parasite isolates collected at both time points. High diversity in these two genes has been maintained overtime despite marked reductions in malaria transmission due to ITNs use. The frequency of 3D7 sequence-types was very low in this area. These findings provide information that could be useful in the design of future malaria vaccines for deployment in endemic areas with high ITN coverage and in interpretation of efficacy data for malaria vaccines based on 3D7 parasite strains.

  10. Variation in the immune responses against Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein-1 and apical membrane antigen-1 in children residing in the different epidemiological strata of malaria in Cameroon. (United States)

    Kwenti, Tebit Emmanuel; Moye, Adzemye Linus; Wiylanyuy, Adzemye Basil; Njunda, Longdoh Anna; Nkuo-Akenji, Theresa


    Studies to assess the immune responses against malaria in Cameroonian children are limited. The purpose of this study was to assess the immune responses against Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1 19 ) and apical membrane antigen-1 (AMA-1) in children residing in the different epidemiological strata of malaria in Cameroon. In a cross-sectional survey performed between April and July 2015, 602 children between 2 and 15 years (mean ± SD = 5.7 ± 3.7), comprising 319 (53%) males were enrolled from five epidemiological strata of malaria in Cameroon including: the sudano-sahelian (SS) strata, the high inland plateau (HIP) strata, the south Cameroonian equatorial forest (SCEF) strata, the high western plateau (HWP) strata, and the coastal (C) strata. The children were screened for clinical malaria (defined by malaria parasitaemia ≥ 5000 parasites/µl plus axillary temperature ≥ 37.5 °C). Their antibody responses were measured against P. falciparum MSP-1 19 and AMA-1 vaccine candidate antigens using standard ELISA technique. A majority of the participants were IgG responders 72.1% (95% CI 68.3-75.6). The proportion of responders was higher in females (p = 0.002) and in children aged 10 years and above (p = 0.005). The proportion of responders was highest in Limbe (C strata) and lowest in Ngaoundere (HIP strata) (p malaria (p malaria parasites. The immune responses varied considerably across the different strata: the highest levels observed in the C strata and the lowest in the HIP strata. Furthermore, malaria transmission in Cameroon could be categorized into two major groups based on the serological reaction of the children: the southern (comprising C and SCEF strata) and northern (comprising HWP, HIP and SS strata) groups. These findings may have significant implications in the design of future trials for evaluating malaria vaccine candidates in Cameroon.

  11. Plasmodium falciparum variant STEVOR antigens are expressed in merozoites and possibly associated with erythrocyte invasion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petter Michaela


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plasmodium falciparum STEVOR proteins, encoded by the multicopy stevor gene family have no known biological functions. Their expression and unique locations in different parasite life cycle stages evoke multiple functionalities. Their abundance and hypervariability support a role in antigenic variation. Methods Immunoblotting of total parasite proteins with an anti-STEVOR antibody was used to identify variant antigens of this gene family and to follow changes in STEVOR expression in parasite populations panned on CSA or CD36 receptors. Immunofluorescence assays and immunoelectron microscopy were performed to study the subcellular localization of STEVOR proteins in different parasite stages. The capacity of the antibody to inhibit merozoite invasion of erythrocytes was assessed to determine whether STEVOR variants were involved in the invasion process. Results Antigenic variation of STEVORs at the protein level was observed in blood stage parasites. STEVOR variants were found to be present on the merozoite surface and in rhoptries. An insight into a participation in erythrocyte invasion was gained through an immunofluorescence analysis of a sequence of thin slides representing progressive steps in erythrocyte invasion. An interesting feature of the staining pattern was what appeared to be the release of STEVORs around the invading merozoites. Because the anti-STEVOR antibody did not inhibit invasion, the role of STEVORs in this process remains unknown. Conclusion The localization of STEVOR proteins to the merozoite surface and the rhoptries together with its prevalence as a released component in the invading merozoite suggest a role of these antigens in adhesion and/or immune evasion in the erythrocyte invasion process. These observations would also justify STEVORs for undergoing antigenic variation. Even though a role in erythrocyte invasion remains speculative, an association of members of the STEVOR protein family with

  12. Surface characterisation of synthetic coal chars made from model compounds

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arenillas, A.; Pevida, C.; Rubiera, F.; Palacios, J.M.; Navarrete, R.; Denoyel, R.; Rouquerol, J.; Pis, J.J. [Instituto Nacional del Carbon, CSIC, Oviedo (Spain)


    Knowledge of surface properties is essential for understanding the reaction mechanisms involved in several coal conversion processes. However, due to the complexity and heterogeneity of coal this is rather difficult and the use of known model compounds could be a valuable tool. Single model compounds have been widely used, but they give a quite simplified picture. In this work a mixture of model compounds in a phenol-formaldehyde matrix was cured in order to create cross-linked structures. The obtained synthetic coal was pyrolysed in a fixed bed reactor, under helium atmosphere. The surface composition of the chars was evaluated by XPS, adsorption gravimetry of water vapour, temperature-programmed desorption and potentiometric titration. Texture was characterised by N{sub 2} and CO{sub 2} adsorption isotherms at 77 and 273 K, respectively, and immersion calorimetry in benzene. The results obtained from the different techniques were contrasted in order to give an overview of the surface properties (chemical and physical) of the samples studied. Chars obtained under the same operating conditions from a high volatile bituminous coal were used as a reference.

  13. Surface water classification and monitoring using polarimetric synthetic aperture radar (United States)

    Irwin, Katherine Elizabeth

    Surface water classification using synthetic aperture radar (SAR) is an established practice for monitoring flood hazards due to the high temporal and spatial resolution it provides. Surface water change is a dynamic process that varies both spatially and temporally, and can occur on various scales resulting in significant impacts on affected areas. Small-scale flooding hazards, caused by beaver dam failure, is an example of surface water change, which can impact nearby infrastructure and ecosystems. Assessing these hazards is essential to transportation and infrastructure maintenance. With current satellite missions operating in multiple polarizations, spatio-temporal resolutions, and frequencies, a comprehensive comparison between SAR products for surface water monitoring is necessary. In this thesis, surface water extent models derived from high resolution single-polarization TerraSAR-X (TSX) data, medium resolution dual-polarization TSX data and low resolution quad-polarization RADARSAT-2 (RS-2) data are compared. There exists a compromise between acquiring SAR data with a high resolution or high information content. Multi-polarization data provides additional phase and intensity information, which makes it possible to better classify areas of flooded vegetation and wetlands. These locations are often where fluctuations in surface water occur and are essential for understanding dynamic underlying processes. However, often multi-polarized data is acquired at a low resolution, which cannot image these zones effectively. High spatial resolution, single-polarization TSX data provides the best model of open water. However, these single-polarization observations have limited information content and are affected by shadow and layover errors. This often hinders the classification of other land cover types. The dual-polarization TSX data allows for the classification of flooded vegetation, but classification is less accurate compared to the quad-polarization RS-2 data

  14. Harvest of Plasmodium falciparum merozoites from continuous culture. (United States)

    Mrema, J E; Campbell, G H; Jaramillo, A L; Miranda, R; Rieckmann, K H


    Spontaneously released merozoites were harvested from cultures in which 42-90% of the erythrocytes had been infected with mature forms of Plasmodium falciparum at the start of incubation. The mature forms had been extracted from asynchronous cultures by the use of Ficoll and Plasmagel gradients. As the mature forms consisted of both trophozoites and schizonts, merozoites were released into the culture medium over a long period of time. The synchrony of merozoite release did not appear to be improved by prior exposure of parasites to sorbitol. Over this prolonged period of incubation, the yield of merozoites was disappointingly low in cultures containing 2.5% of erythrocytes. At erythrocyte concentrations of 0.01-0.25%, 3-10 times more merozoites were released into the medium; 0.4-2.3 merozoites per initial mature form were harvested over a 15-19-hour period. In addition to merozoites, contents of the culture medium included intact erythrocytes, ghost cells, and other cellular fragments. Only intact erythrocytes were effectively removed from the medium by simple or Ficoll gradient centrifugation. Merozoite preparations that are free from host cellular material are important in the development of a human malaria vaccine.

  15. Penetration of equine leukocytes by merozoites of Sarcocystis neurona. (United States)

    Lindsay, David S; Mitchell, Sheila M; Yang, Jibing; Dubey, J P; Gogal, Robert M; Witonsky, Sharon G


    Horses are considered accidental hosts for Sarcocystis neurona and they often develop severe neurological disease when infected with this parasite. Schizont stages develop in the central nervous system (CNS) and cause the neurological lesions associated with equine protozoal myeloencephalitis. The present study was done to examine the ability of S. neurona merozoites to penetrate and develop in equine peripheral blood leukocytes. These infected host cells might serve as a possible transport mechanism into the CNS. S. neurona merozoites penetrated equine leukocytes within 5 min of co-culture. Infected leukocytes were usually monocytes. Infected leukocytes were present up to the final day of examination at 3 days. Up to three merozoites were present in an infected monocyte. No development to schizont stages was observed. All stages observed were in the host cell cytoplasm. We postulate that S. neurona merozoites may cross the blood brain barrier hidden inside leukocytes. Once inside the CNS these merozoites can egress and invade additional cells and cause encephalitis.

  16. Protocol for quantitative tracing of surface water with synthetic DNA (United States)

    Foppen, J. W.; Bogaard, T. A.


    Based on experiments we carried out in 2010 with various synthetic single stranded DNA markers with a size of 80 nucleotides (ssDNA; Foppen et al., 2011), we concluded that ssDNA can be used to carry out spatially distributed multi-tracer experiments in the environment. Main advantages are in principle unlimited amount of tracers, environmental friendly and tracer recovery at very high dilution rates (detection limit is very low). However, when ssDNA was injected in headwater streams, we found that at selected downstream locations, the total mass recovery was less than 100%. The exact reason for low mass recovery was unknown. In order to start identifying the cause of the loss of mass in these surface waters, and to increase our knowledge of the behaviour of synthetic ssDNA in the environment, we examined the effect of laboratory and field protocols working with artificial DNA by performing numerous batch experiments. Then, we carried out several field tests in different headwater streams in the Netherlands and in Luxembourg. The laboratory experiments consisted of a batch of water in a vessel with in the order of 10^10 ssDNA molecules injected into the batch. The total duration of each experiment was 10 hour, and, at regular time intervals, 100 µl samples were collected in a 1.5 ml Eppendorf vial for qPCR analyses. The waters we used ranged from milliQ water to river water with an Electrical Conductivity of around 400 μS/cm. The batch experiments were performed in different vessel types: polyethylene bottles, polypropylene copolymer bottles , and glass bottles. In addition, two filter types were tested: 1 µm pore size glass fibre filters and 0.2 µm pore size cellulose acetate filters. Lastly, stream bed sediment was added to the batch experiments to quantify interaction of the DNA with sediment. For each field experiment around 10^15 ssDNA molecules were injected, and water samples were collected 100 - 600 m downstream of the point of injection. Additionally

  17. Distal hindlimb kinematics of galloping Thoroughbred racehorses on dirt and synthetic racetrack surfaces. (United States)

    Symons, J E; Garcia, T C; Stover, S M


    The effect of racetrack surface (dirt or synthetic) on distal hindlimb kinematics of racehorses running at competition speeds is not known. To compare distal hindlimb and hoof kinematics during stance of breezing (unrestrained gallop) racehorses between dirt and synthetic surfaces. Two-dimensional kinematic video analysis of 5 Thoroughbred racehorses galloping at high speeds (12-17 m/s) on a dirt racetrack and a synthetic racetrack. The positions of kinematic markers applied to the left hindlimb were recorded at 500 Hz. Position, velocity and acceleration of joint angles and hoof translation during stance were calculated in the sagittal plane. Peak translational and angular kinematic values were compared between the dirt and synthetic race surfaces using mixed model analyses of covariance. Maximum and heel-strike metatarsophalangeal (fetlock) angles were greater (Pdirt surface than on the synthetic surface. Maximum fetlock angle occurred earlier during stance on the dirt surface (Pdirt surface (Pdirt surface than on a synthetic surface. Synthetic race surfaces may mitigate risk of injury to hindlimb fetlock structures by reducing fetlock hyperextension and associated strains in fetlock support structures. Differences in hoof slide may contribute to different distal hindlimb kinematics between surfaces. © 2013 EVJ Ltd.

  18. Investigation of synthetic aperture methods in ultrasound surface imaging using elementary surface types. (United States)

    Kerr, W; Pierce, S G; Rowe, P


    Synthetic aperture imaging methods have been employed widely in recent research in non-destructive testing (NDT), but uptake has been more limited in medical ultrasound imaging. Typically offering superior focussing power over more traditional phased array methods, these techniques have been employed in NDT applications to locate and characterise small defects within large samples, but have rarely been used to image surfaces. A desire to ultimately employ ultrasonic surface imaging for bone surface geometry measurement prior to surgical intervention motivates this research, and results are presented for initial laboratory trials of a surface reconstruction technique based on global thresholding of ultrasonic 3D point cloud data. In this study, representative geometry artefacts were imaged in the laboratory using two synthetic aperture techniques; the Total Focusing Method (TFM) and the Synthetic Aperture Focusing Technique (SAFT) employing full and narrow synthetic apertures, respectively. Three high precision metallic samples of known geometries (cuboid, sphere and cylinder) which featured a range of elementary surface primitives were imaged using a 5MHz, 128 element 1D phased array employing both SAFT and TFM approaches. The array was manipulated around the samples using a precision robotic positioning system, allowing for repeatable ultrasound derived 3D surface point clouds to be created. A global thresholding technique was then developed that allowed the extraction of the surface profiles, and these were compared with the known geometry samples to provide a quantitative measure of error of 3D surface reconstruction. The mean errors achieved with optimised SAFT imaging for the cuboidal, spherical and cylindrical samples were 1.3mm, 2.9mm and 2.0mm respectively, while those for TFM imaging were 3.7mm, 3.0mm and 3.1mm, respectively. These results were contrary to expectations given the higher information content associated with the TFM images. However, it was

  19. Surface and Bulk Modification of Synthetic Textiles to Improve Dyeability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Agrawal, P. (Pramod); Parvinzadeh Gashti, M.; Willoughby, J.


    Synthetic fibers, mainly polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polyamide (PA), polyacrylonitrile (PAN) and polypropylene (PP), are the most widely used polymers in the textile industry. These fibers surpass the production of natural fibers with a market share of 54.4%. The advantages of these fibers are

  20. A recombinant multi-antigen vaccine formulation containing Babesia bovis merozoite surface antigens MSA-2a1, MSA-2b and MSA-2c elicits invasion-inhibitory antibodies and IFN-γ producing cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alba Marina Gimenez


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Babesia bovis is a tick-transmitted protozoan hemoparasite and the causative agent of bovine babesiosis, a potential risk to more than 500 million cattle worldwide. The vaccines currently available are based on attenuated parasites, which are difficult to produce, and are only recommended for use in bovines under one year of age. When used in older animals, these vaccines may cause life-threatening clinical symptoms and eventually death. The development of a multi-subunit recombinant vaccine against B. bovis would be attractive from an economic standpoint and, most importantly, could be recommended for animals of any age. In the present study, recombinant ectodomains of MSA-2a1, MSA-2b and MSA-2c antigens were expressed in Pichia pastoris yeast as secreted soluble peptides. Results The antigens were purified to homogeneity, and biochemically and immunologically characterized. A vaccine formulation was obtained by emulsifying a mixture of the three peptides with the adjuvant Montanide ISA 720, which elicited high IgG antibody titers against each of the above antigens. IgG antibodies generated against each MSA-antigen recognized merozoites and significantly inhibited the invasion of bovine erythrocytes. Cellular immune responses were also detected, which were characterized by splenic and lymph node CD4+ T cells producing IFN-γ and TNF-α upon stimulation with the antigens MSA-2a1 or MSA-2c. Conclusions These data strongly suggest the high protective potential of the presented formulation, and we propose that it could be tested in vaccination trials of bovines challenged with B. bovis.

  1. Surface modification of polyester synthetic leather with tetramethylsilane by atmospheric pressure plasma (United States)

    Kan, C. W.; Kwong, C. H.; Ng, S. P.


    Much works have been done on synthetic materials but scarcely on synthetic leather owing to its surface structures in terms of porosity and roughness. This paper examines the use of atmospheric pressure plasma (APP) treatment for improving the surface performance of polyester synthetic leather by use of a precursor, tetramethylsilane (TMS). Plasma deposition is regarded as an effective, simple and single-step method with low pollution. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) confirm the deposition of organosilanes on the sample's surface. The results showed that under a particular combination of treatment parameters, a hydrophobic surface was achieved on the APP treated sample with sessile drop static contact angle of 138°. The hydrophobic surface is stable without hydrophilic recovery 30 days after plasma treatment.

  2. Effects of surface-mapping corrections and synthetic-aperture focusing techniques on ultrasonic imaging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barna, B.A.; Johnson, J.A.


    Improvements in ultrasonic imaging that can be obtained using algorithms that map the surface of targets are evaluated. This information is incorporated in the application of synthetic-aperture focusing techniques which also have the potential to improve image resolution. Images obtained using directed-beam (flat) transducers and the focused transducers normally used for synthetic-aperture processing are quantitatively compared by using no processing, synthetic-aperture processing with no corrections for surface variations, and synthetic-aperture processing with surface mapping. The unprocessed images have relatively poor lateral resolutions because echoes from two adjacent reflectors show interference effects which prevent their identification even if the spacing is larger than the single-hole resolution. The synthetic-aperture-processed images show at least a twofold improvement in lateral resolution and greatly reduced interference effects in multiple-hole images compared to directed-beam images. Perhaps more importantly, in images of test blocks with substantial surface variations portions of the image are displaced from their actual positions by several wavelengths. To correct for this effect an algorithm has been developed for calculating the surface variations. The corrected images produced using this algorithm are accurate within the experimental error. In addition, the same algorithm, when applied to the directed-beam data, produced images that are not only accurately positioned, but that also have a resolution comparable to conventional synthetic-aperture-processed images obtained from focused-transducer data. This suggests that using synthetic-aperture processing on the type of data normally collected during directed-beam ultrasonic inspections would eliminate the need to rescan for synthetic-aperture enhancement

  3. Hoof accelerations and ground reaction forces of Thoroughbred racehorses measured on dirt, synthetic, and turf track surfaces. (United States)

    Setterbo, Jacob J; Garcia, Tanya C; Campbell, Ian P; Reese, Jennifer L; Morgan, Jessica M; Kim, Sun Y; Hubbard, Mont; Stover, Susan M


    To compare hoof acceleration and ground reaction force (GRF) data among dirt, synthetic, and turf surfaces in Thoroughbred racehorses. 3 healthy Thoroughbred racehorses. Forelimb hoof accelerations and GRFs were measured with an accelerometer and a dynamometric horseshoe during trot and canter on dirt, synthetic, and turf track surfaces at a racecourse. Maxima, minima, temporal components, and a measure of vibration were extracted from the data. Acceleration and GRF variables were compared statistically among surfaces. The synthetic surface often had the lowest peak accelerations, mean vibration, and peak GRFs. Peak acceleration during hoof landing was significantly smaller for the synthetic surface (mean + or - SE, 28.5g + or - 2.9g) than for the turf surface (42.9g + or - 3.8g). Hoof vibrations during hoof landing for the synthetic surface were dirt and turf surfaces. Peak GRF for the synthetic surface (11.5 + or - 0.4 N/kg) was 83% and 71% of those for the dirt (13.8 + or - 0.3 N/kg) and turf surfaces (16.1 + or - 0.7 N/kg), respectively. The relatively low hoof accelerations, vibrations, and peak GRFs associated with the synthetic surface evaluated in the present study indicated that synthetic surfaces have potential for injury reduction in Thoroughbred racehorses. However, because of the unique material properties and different nature of individual dirt, synthetic, and turf racetrack surfaces, extending the results of this study to encompass all track surfaces should be done with caution.

  4. Synthetic microfluidic paper: high surface area and high porosity polymer micropillar arrays. (United States)

    Hansson, Jonas; Yasuga, Hiroki; Haraldsson, Tommy; van der Wijngaart, Wouter


    We introduce Synthetic Microfluidic Paper, a novel porous material for microfluidic applications that consists of an OSTE polymer that is photostructured in a well-controlled geometry of slanted and interlocked micropillars. We demonstrate the distinct benefits of Synthetic Microfluidic Paper over other porous microfluidic materials, such as nitrocellulose, traditional paper and straight micropillar arrays: in contrast to straight micropillar arrays, the geometry of Synthetic Microfluidic Paper was miniaturized without suffering capillary collapse during manufacturing and fluidic operation, resulting in a six-fold increased internal surface area and a three-fold increased porous fraction. Compared to commercial nitrocellulose materials for capillary assays, Synthetic Microfluidic Paper shows a wider range of capillary pumping speed and four times lower device-to-device variation. Compared to the surfaces of the other porous microfluidic materials that are modified by adsorption, Synthetic Microfluidic Paper contains free thiol groups and has been shown to be suitable for covalent surface chemistry, demonstrated here for increasing the material hydrophilicity. These results illustrate the potential of Synthetic Microfluidic Paper as a porous microfluidic material with improved performance characteristics, especially for bioassay applications such as diagnostic tests.

  5. The Mediterranean Plastic Soup: synthetic polymers in Mediterranean surface waters (United States)

    Suaria, Giuseppe; Avio, Carlo G.; Mineo, Annabella; Lattin, Gwendolyn L.; Magaldi, Marcello G.; Belmonte, Genuario; Moore, Charles J.; Regoli, Francesco; Aliani, Stefano


    The Mediterranean Sea has been recently proposed as one of the most impacted regions of the world with regards to microplastics, however the polymeric composition of these floating particles is still largely unknown. Here we present the results of a large-scale survey of neustonic micro- and meso-plastics floating in Mediterranean waters, providing the first extensive characterization of their chemical identity as well as detailed information on their abundance and geographical distribution. All particles >700 μm collected in our samples were identified through FT-IR analysis (n = 4050 particles), shedding for the first time light on the polymeric diversity of this emerging pollutant. Sixteen different classes of synthetic materials were identified. Low-density polymers such as polyethylene and polypropylene were the most abundant compounds, followed by polyamides, plastic-based paints, polyvinyl chloride, polystyrene and polyvinyl alcohol. Less frequent polymers included polyethylene terephthalate, polyisoprene, poly(vinyl stearate), ethylene-vinyl acetate, polyepoxide, paraffin wax and polycaprolactone, a biodegradable polyester reported for the first time floating in off-shore waters. Geographical differences in sample composition were also observed, demonstrating sub-basin scale heterogeneity in plastics distribution and likely reflecting a complex interplay between pollution sources, sinks and residence times of different polymers at sea.

  6. Surface modification of polyester synthetic leather with tetramethylsilane by atmospheric pressure plasma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kan, C.W., E-mail: [Institute of Textiles and Clothing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon (Hong Kong); Kwong, C.H. [Institute of Textiles and Clothing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon (Hong Kong); Ng, S.P. [Hong Kong Community College, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (Hong Kong)


    Highlights: • Atmospheric pressure plasma treatment improved surface performance of polyester synthetic leather with tetramethylsilane. • XPS and FTIR confirmed the deposition of organosilanes on the sample's surface. • Contact angle increases to 138° after plasma treatment. - Abstract: Much works have been done on synthetic materials but scarcely on synthetic leather owing to its surface structures in terms of porosity and roughness. This paper examines the use of atmospheric pressure plasma (APP) treatment for improving the surface performance of polyester synthetic leather by use of a precursor, tetramethylsilane (TMS). Plasma deposition is regarded as an effective, simple and single-step method with low pollution. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) confirm the deposition of organosilanes on the sample's surface. The results showed that under a particular combination of treatment parameters, a hydrophobic surface was achieved on the APP treated sample with sessile drop static contact angle of 138°. The hydrophobic surface is stable without hydrophilic recovery 30 days after plasma treatment.

  7. Surface modification of polyester synthetic leather with tetramethylsilane by atmospheric pressure plasma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kan, C.W.; Kwong, C.H.; Ng, S.P.


    Highlights: • Atmospheric pressure plasma treatment improved surface performance of polyester synthetic leather with tetramethylsilane. • XPS and FTIR confirmed the deposition of organosilanes on the sample's surface. • Contact angle increases to 138° after plasma treatment. - Abstract: Much works have been done on synthetic materials but scarcely on synthetic leather owing to its surface structures in terms of porosity and roughness. This paper examines the use of atmospheric pressure plasma (APP) treatment for improving the surface performance of polyester synthetic leather by use of a precursor, tetramethylsilane (TMS). Plasma deposition is regarded as an effective, simple and single-step method with low pollution. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) confirm the deposition of organosilanes on the sample's surface. The results showed that under a particular combination of treatment parameters, a hydrophobic surface was achieved on the APP treated sample with sessile drop static contact angle of 138°. The hydrophobic surface is stable without hydrophilic recovery 30 days after plasma treatment

  8. Non-enzymatic palladium recovery on microbial and synthetic surfaces

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rotaru, Amelia-Elena; Jiang, Wei; Finster, Kai


    in the presence of cells as compared to cell-free controls. We found no difference between native (untreated) and autoclaved cells, and could demonstrate that even a non-enzymatic protein (bovine serum albumin) stimulated Pd(II) reduction as efficiently as bacterial cells. Amine groups readily interact with Pd......(II), and to specifically test their role in surface-assisted Pd(II) reduction by formate, we replaced bacterial cells with polystyrene microparticles functionalized with amine or carboxyl groups. Amine-functionalized microparticles had the same effect on Pd(II) reduction as bacterial cells, and the effect could...... be hampered if the amine groups were blocked by acetylation. The interaction with amine groups was confirmed by infrared spectroscopy on whole cells and amine-functionalized microparticles. In conclusion, bio-supported Pd(II) reduction on microbial surfaces is possibly mediated by a non-enzymatic mechanism...

  9. Simulation of actuated synthetic cilia expelling microorganisms from a surface (United States)

    Shum, Henry; Tripathi, Anurag; Yeomans, Julia; Balazs, Anna


    The continual motion of cilia provides a defense against biofouling for a variety of marine organisms. Inspired by this natural solution, we perform numerical simulations to study the interactions between actuated, biomimetic cilia and model microswimmers that are hydrodynamically attracted to bare surfaces and therefore behave similarly to fouling organisms. The 3-dimensional fluid flow is coupled to the motion of the cilia and swimmers using an integrated lattice Boltzmann and immersed boundary method. We show that a sparse array of actuated cilia, through which the organisms are able to swim, is able to robustly expel swimmers. The average residence time of the swimmers in the ciliary layer is reduced if the motion of the cilia generates a net fluid flow, but for relatively fast swimmers, the steric interaction with the moving cilia alone is sufficient to ``knock'' the organisms away from the surface. As the demonstrated mechanisms for antifouling do not rely on specific chemical or physical properties of the surface or swimmer, actuated cilia can potentially protect microfluidic devices, filtration membranes or ship hulls from a wide range of fouling species.

  10. Non-enzymatic palladium recovery on microbial and synthetic surfaces. (United States)

    Rotaru, Amelia-Elena; Jiang, Wei; Finster, Kai; Skrydstrup, Troels; Meyer, Rikke Louise


    The use of microorganisms as support for reduction of dissolved Pd(II) to immobilized Pd(0) nanoparticles is an environmentally friendly approach for Pd recovery from waste. To better understand and engineer Pd(0) nanoparticle synthesis, one has to consider the mechanisms by which Pd(II) is reduced on microbial surfaces. Escherichia coli, Shewanella oneidensis, and Pseudomonas putida were used as model organisms in order to elucidate the role of microbial cells in Pd(II) reduction under acidic conditions. Pd(II) was reduced by formate under acidic conditions, and the process occurred substantially faster in the presence of cells as compared to cell-free controls. We found no difference between native (untreated) and autoclaved cells, and could demonstrate that even a non-enzymatic protein (bovine serum albumin) stimulated Pd(II) reduction as efficiently as bacterial cells. Amine groups readily interact with Pd(II), and to specifically test their role in surface-assisted Pd(II) reduction by formate, we replaced bacterial cells with polystyrene microparticles functionalized with amine or carboxyl groups. Amine-functionalized microparticles had the same effect on Pd(II) reduction as bacterial cells, and the effect could be hampered if the amine groups were blocked by acetylation. The interaction with amine groups was confirmed by infrared spectroscopy on whole cells and amine-functionalized microparticles. In conclusion, bio-supported Pd(II) reduction on microbial surfaces is possibly mediated by a non-enzymatic mechanism. We therefore suggest the use of amine-rich biomaterials rather than intact cells for Pd bio-recovery from waste. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Self-Cleaning Synthetic Adhesive Surfaces Mimicking Tokay Geckos.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Branson, Eric D.; Singh, Seema; Burckel, David Bruce; Fan, Hongyou; Houston, Jack E.; Brinker, C. Jeffrey; Johnson, Patrick


    A gecko's extraordinary ability to suspend itself from walls and ceilings of varied surface roughness has interested humans for hundreds of years. Many theories and possible explanations describing this phenomenon have been proposed including sticky secretions, microsuckers, and electrostatic forces; however, today it is widely accepted that van der Waals forces play the most important role in this type of dry adhesion. Inarguably, the vital feature that allows a gecko's suspension is the presence of billions 3 of tiny hairs on the pad of its foot called spatula. These features are small enough to reach within van der Waals distances of any surface (spatula radius %7E100 nm); thus, the combined effect of billions of van der Waals interactions is more than sufficient to hold a gecko's weight to surfaces such as smooth ceilings or wet glass. Two lithographic approaches were used to make hierarchal structures with dimensions similar to the gecko foot dimensions noted above. One approach combined photo-lithography with soft lithography (micro-molding). In this fabrication scheme the fiber feature size, defined by the alumina micromold was 0.2 um in diameter and 60 um in height. The second approach followed more conventional photolithography-based patterning. Patterned features with dimensions %7E0.3 mm in diameter by 0.5 mm tall were produced. We used interfacial force microscopy employing a parabolic diamond tip with a diameter of 200 nm to measure the surface adhesion of these structures. The measured adhesive forces ranged from 0.3 uN - 0.6 uN, yielding an average bonding stress between 50 N/cm2 to 100 N/cm2. By comparison the reported literature value for the average stress of a Tokay gecko foot is 10 N/cm2. Acknowledgements This work was funded by Sandia National Laboratory's Laboratory Directed Research & Development program (LDRD). All coating processes were conducted in the cleanroom facility located at the University of New Mexico

  12. Effectiveness of WRF wind direction for retrieving coastal sea surface wind from synthetic aperture radar

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Takeyama, Yuko; Ohsawa, Teruo; Kozai, Katsutoshi


    Wind direction is required as input to the geophysical model function (GMF) for the retrieval of sea surface wind speed from a synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images. The present study verifies the effectiveness of using the wind direction obtained from the weather research and forecasting model (...

  13. Stretchable surfaces with programmable 3D texture morphing for synthetic camouflaging skins (United States)

    Pikul, J. H.; Li, S.; Bai, H.; Hanlon, R. T.; Cohen, I.; Shepherd, R. F.


    Technologies that use stretchable materials are increasingly important, yet we are unable to control how they stretch with much more sophistication than inflating balloons. Nature, however, demonstrates remarkable control of stretchable surfaces; for example, cephalopods can project hierarchical structures from their skin in milliseconds for a wide range of textural camouflage. Inspired by cephalopod muscular morphology, we developed synthetic tissue groupings that allowed programmable transformation of two-dimensional (2D) stretchable surfaces into target 3D shapes. The synthetic tissue groupings consisted of elastomeric membranes embedded with inextensible textile mesh that inflated to within 10% of their target shapes by using a simple fabrication method and modeling approach. These stretchable surfaces transform from flat sheets to 3D textures that imitate natural stone and plant shapes and camouflage into their background environments.

  14. Malaria parasite cGMP-dependent protein kinase regulates blood stage merozoite secretory organelle discharge and egress.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christine R Collins


    Full Text Available The malaria parasite replicates within an intraerythrocytic parasitophorous vacuole (PV. Eventually, in a tightly regulated process called egress, proteins of the PV and intracellular merozoite surface are modified by an essential parasite serine protease called PfSUB1, whilst the enclosing PV and erythrocyte membranes rupture, releasing merozoites to invade fresh erythrocytes. Inhibition of the Plasmodium falciparum cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PfPKG prevents egress, but the underlying mechanism is unknown. Here we show that PfPKG activity is required for PfSUB1 discharge into the PV, as well as for release of distinct merozoite organelles called micronemes. Stimulation of PfPKG by inhibiting parasite phosphodiesterase activity induces premature PfSUB1 discharge and egress of developmentally immature, non-invasive parasites. Our findings identify the signalling pathway that regulates PfSUB1 function and egress, and raise the possibility of targeting PfPKG or parasite phosphodiesterases in therapeutic approaches to dysregulate critical protease-mediated steps in the parasite life cycle.

  15. Cell-surface display of enzymes by the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae for synthetic biology. (United States)

    Tanaka, Tsutomu; Kondo, Akihiko


    In yeast cell-surface displays, functional proteins, such as cellulases, are genetically fused to an anchor protein and expressed on the cell surface. Saccharomyces cerevisiae, which is often utilized as a cell factory for the production of fuels, chemicals, and proteins, is the most commonly used yeast for cell-surface display. To construct yeast cells with a desired function, such as the ability to utilize cellulose as a substrate for bioethanol production, cell-surface display techniques for the efficient expression of enzymes on the cell membrane need to be combined with metabolic engineering approaches for manipulating target pathways within cells. In this Minireview, we summarize the recent progress of biorefinery fields in the development and application of yeast cell-surface displays from a synthetic biology perspective and discuss approaches for further enhancing cell-surface display efficiency. © FEMS 2015. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:

  16. Ozone production using a power modulated surface dielectric barrier discharge in dry synthetic air

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šimek, Milan; Pekárek, S.; Prukner, Václav


    Roč. 32, č. 4 (2012), s. 743-754 ISSN 0272-4324 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA202/09/0176 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z20430508 Keywords : ozone * surface DBD * synthetic air * nitrogen oxides * production efficiency Subject RIV: BL - Plasma and Gas Discharge Physics Impact factor: 1.728, year: 2012

  17. Dynamic properties of a dirt and a synthetic equine racetrack surface measured by a track-testing device. (United States)

    Setterbo, J J; Fyhrie, P B; Hubbard, M; Upadhyaya, S K; Stover, S M


    Racetrack surface is a risk factor for Thoroughbred racehorse injury and death that can be engineered and managed. To investigate the relationship between surface and injury, the mechanical behaviour of dirt and synthetic track surfaces must be quantified. To compare dynamic properties of a dirt and a synthetic surface in situ using a track-testing device designed to simulate equine hoof impact; and to determine the effects of impact velocity, impact angle and repeated impact on dynamic surface behaviour. A track-testing device measured force and displacement during impact into a dirt and a synthetic surface at 3 impact velocities (1.91, 2.30, 2.63 m/s), 2 impact angles (0°, 20° from vertical), and 2 consecutive impacts (initial, repeat). Surfaces were measured at 3 locations/day for 3 days. The effects of surface type, impact velocity, impact angle and impact number on dynamic surface properties were assessed using analysis of variance. Synthetic surface maximum forces, load rates and stiffnesses were 37-67% of dirt surface values. Surfaces were less stiff with lower impact velocities, angled impacts and initial impacts. The magnitude of differences between dirt and synthetic surfaces increased for repeat impacts and higher impact velocities. The synthetic surface was generally softer than the dirt surface. Greatly increased hardness for repeat impacts corroborates the importance of maintenance. Results at different impact velocities suggest that surface differences will persist at higher impact velocities. For both surfaces it is clearly important to prevent horse exposure to precompacted surfaces, particularly during high-speed training when the surface has already been trampled. These data should be useful in coordinating racetrack surface management with racehorse training to prevent injuries. © 2012 EVJ Ltd.

  18. The triazine-based porous organic polymer: Novel synthetic strategy for high specific surface area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Park, Jin Kuen


    A new type of microporous polymer has been successively synthesized via a simple polycondensation reaction with the 2,4-diaminotriazine moiety and dianhydride monomer. Diaminotriazine moieties in M1 especially can provide effective branching sites, resulting in high surface areas up to 1150 m"2 /g. In addition, the specific pore structure of the polyimide POP in its solid state can be modified by the surface activation method. Therefore, it can be expected that the resulting material will be a promising candidate for gas storage, and with this synthetic strategy, various type of derivatives will also be optimized

  19. The triazine-based porous organic polymer: Novel synthetic strategy for high specific surface area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Park, Jin Kuen [Dept. of Chemistry, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, Yongin (Korea, Republic of)


    A new type of microporous polymer has been successively synthesized via a simple polycondensation reaction with the 2,4-diaminotriazine moiety and dianhydride monomer. Diaminotriazine moieties in M1 especially can provide effective branching sites, resulting in high surface areas up to 1150 m{sup 2} /g. In addition, the specific pore structure of the polyimide POP in its solid state can be modified by the surface activation method. Therefore, it can be expected that the resulting material will be a promising candidate for gas storage, and with this synthetic strategy, various type of derivatives will also be optimized.

  20. Comparison of skating kinetics and kinematics on ice and on a synthetic surface. (United States)

    Stidwill, T J; Pearsall, David; Turcotte, Rene


    The recent popularization and technological improvements of synthetic or artificial ice surfaces provide an attractive alternative to real ice in venues where the latter is impractical to install. Potentially, synthetic ice (SI) may be installed in controlled laboratory settings to permit detailed biomechanical analysis of skating manoeuvres. Unknown, however, is the extent to which skating on SI replicates skating on traditional ice (ICE). Hence, the purpose of this study was to compare kinetic and kinematic forward skating parameters between SI and ICE surfaces. With 11 male hockey players, a portable strain gauge system adhered to the outside of the skate blade holder was used to measure skate propulsive force synchronized with electrogoniometers for tracking dynamic knee and ankle movements during forward skating acceleration. In general, the kinetic and kinematic variables investigated in this study showed minimal differences between the two surfaces (P > 0.06), and no individual variable differences were identified between the two surfaces (P > or = 0.1) with the exception of greater knee extension on SI than ICE (15.2 degrees to 11.0 degrees; P skating, and thus offer the potential for valid analogous conditions for in-lab testing and training.

  1. NOAA high resolution sea surface winds data from Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) on the Sentinel-1 satellites (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set consists of high resolution sea surface winds data produced from Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) on board Sentinel-1A and Sentinel-1B satellites. This...

  2. Accurate 3D reconstruction of bony surfaces using ultrasonic synthetic aperture techniques for robotic knee arthroplasty. (United States)

    Kerr, William; Rowe, Philip; Pierce, Stephen Gareth


    Robotically guided knee arthroplasty systems generally require an individualized, preoperative 3D model of the knee joint. This is typically measured using Computed Tomography (CT) which provides the required accuracy for preoperative surgical intervention planning. Ultrasound imaging presents an attractive alternative to CT, allowing for reductions in cost and the elimination of doses of ionizing radiation, whilst maintaining the accuracy of the 3D model reconstruction of the joint. Traditional phased array ultrasound imaging methods, however, are susceptible to poor resolution and signal to noise ratios (SNR). Alleviating these weaknesses by offering superior focusing power, synthetic aperture methods have been investigated extensively within ultrasonic non-destructive testing. Despite this, they have yet to be fully exploited in medical imaging. In this paper, the ability of a robotic deployed ultrasound imaging system based on synthetic aperture methods to accurately reconstruct bony surfaces is investigated. Employing the Total Focussing Method (TFM) and the Synthetic Aperture Focussing Technique (SAFT), two samples were imaged which were representative of the bones of the knee joint: a human-shaped, composite distal femur and a bovine distal femur. Data were captured using a 5MHz, 128 element 1D phased array, which was manipulated around the samples using a robotic positioning system. Three dimensional surface reconstructions were then produced and compared with reference models measured using a precision laser scanner. Mean errors of 0.82mm and 0.88mm were obtained for the composite and bovine samples, respectively, thus demonstrating the feasibility of the approach to deliver the sub-millimetre accuracy required for the application. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  3. Surface chemical immobilization of bioactive peptides on synthetic polymers for cardiac tissue engineering. (United States)

    Rosellini, Elisabetta; Cristallini, Caterina; Guerra, Giulio D; Barbani, Niccoletta


    The aim of this work was the development of new synthetic polymeric systems, functionalized by surface chemical modification with bioactive peptides, for myocardial tissue engineering. Polycaprolactone and a poly(ester-ether-ester) block copolymer synthesized in our lab, polycaprolactone-poly(ethylene oxide)-polycaprolactone (PCL-PEO-PCL), were used as the substrates to be modified. Two pentapeptides, H-Gly-Arg-Gly-Asp-Ser-OH (GRGDS) from fibronectin and H-Tyr-Ile-Gly-Ser-Arg-OH (YIGSR) from laminin, were used for the functionalization. Polymeric membranes were obtained by casting from solutions and then functionalized by means of alkaline hydrolysis and subsequent coupling of the bioactive molecules through 1-(3-dimethylaminopropyl)-3-ethylcarbodimide hydrochloride/N-hydroxysuccinimide chemistry. The hydrolysis conditions, in terms of hydrolysis time, temperature, and sodium hydroxide concentration, were optimized for the two materials. The occurrence of the coupling reaction was demonstrated by infrared spectroscopy, as the presence on the functionalized materials of the absorption peaks typical of the two peptides. The peptide surface density was determined by chromatographic analysis and the distribution was studied by infrared chemical imaging. The results showed a nearly homogeneous peptide distribution, with a density above the minimum value necessary to promote cell adhesion. Preliminary in vitro cell culture studies demonstrated that the introduction of the bioactive molecules had a positive effect on improving C2C12 myoblasts growth on the synthetic materials.

  4. A Library of Plasmodium vivax Recombinant Merozoite Proteins Reveals New Vaccine Candidates and Protein-Protein Interactions (United States)

    Hostetler, Jessica B.; Sharma, Sumana; Bartholdson, S. Josefin; Wright, Gavin J.; Fairhurst, Rick M.; Rayner, Julian C.


    Background A vaccine targeting Plasmodium vivax will be an essential component of any comprehensive malaria elimination program, but major gaps in our understanding of P. vivax biology, including the protein-protein interactions that mediate merozoite invasion of reticulocytes, hinder the search for candidate antigens. Only one ligand-receptor interaction has been identified, that between P. vivax Duffy Binding Protein (PvDBP) and the erythrocyte Duffy Antigen Receptor for Chemokines (DARC), and strain-specific immune responses to PvDBP make it a complex vaccine target. To broaden the repertoire of potential P. vivax merozoite-stage vaccine targets, we exploited a recent breakthrough in expressing full-length ectodomains of Plasmodium proteins in a functionally-active form in mammalian cells and initiated a large-scale study of P. vivax merozoite proteins that are potentially involved in reticulocyte binding and invasion. Methodology/Principal Findings We selected 39 P. vivax proteins that are predicted to localize to the merozoite surface or invasive secretory organelles, some of which show homology to P. falciparum vaccine candidates. Of these, we were able to express 37 full-length protein ectodomains in a mammalian expression system, which has been previously used to express P. falciparum invasion ligands such as PfRH5. To establish whether the expressed proteins were correctly folded, we assessed whether they were recognized by antibodies from Cambodian patients with acute vivax malaria. IgG from these samples showed at least a two-fold change in reactivity over naïve controls in 27 of 34 antigens tested, and the majority showed heat-labile IgG immunoreactivity, suggesting the presence of conformation-sensitive epitopes and native tertiary protein structures. Using a method specifically designed to detect low-affinity, extracellular protein-protein interactions, we confirmed a predicted interaction between P. vivax 6-cysteine proteins P12 and P41, further

  5. Surface modification of synthetic clay aimed at biomolecule adsorption: synthesis and characterization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angela de Mello Ferreira Guimarães


    Full Text Available This work describes the process for functionalization of laponite through the grafting of 3-mercaptopropyltrimethoxysilane (MPTS. Laponite is synthetic smectite clay with surface area of 350 m²/g. The samples, prior to and after functionalization, were characterized by chemical analyses, thermogravimetric analysis (TGA, x ray diffraction (XRD, diffuse reflectance infrared Fourier transform spectroscopy (DRIFT, scanning electron microscopy and energy dispersive spectrometry (MEV/EDS. Infrared spectroscopy and elemental analyses confirmed the presence of organic chains and thiol groups in the modified clay. The immobilized and available thiol group, measured according to the Volhard method, totaled 1.4 meq/g of clay, with approximately 90% accessible for Ag+ trapping. These results represent an improvement as compared to other works concerning the functionalization of smectite-type clays in which the effect produced by functional group blockage limits the access of species to less than 10% of the complexing sites.

  6. IR spectroscopy of synthetic glasses with Mercury surface composition: Analogs for remote sensing (United States)

    Morlok, Andreas; Klemme, Stephan; Weber, Iris; Stojic, Aleksandra; Sohn, Martin; Hiesinger, Harald


    In a study to provide ground-truth data for mid-infrared observations of the surface of Mercury with the MERTIS (Mercury Radiometer and Thermal Infrared Spectrometer) instrument onboard the ESA/JAXA BepiColombo mission, we have studied 17 synthetic glasses. These samples have the chemical compositions of characteristic Hermean surface areas based on MESSENGER data. The samples have been characterized using optical microscopy, EMPA and Raman spectroscopy. Mid-infrared spectra have been obtained from polished thin sections using Micro-FTIR, and of powdered size fractions of bulk material (0-25, 25-63, 93-125 and 125-250 μm) in the 2.5-18 μm range. The synthetic glasses display mostly spectra typical for amorphous materials with a dominating, single Reststrahlen Band (RB) at 9.5-10.7 μm. RB Features of crystalline forsterite are found in some cases at 9.5-10.2 μm, 10.4-11.2 μm, and at 11.9 μm. Dendritic crystallization starts at a MgO content higher than 23 wt.% MgO. The Reststrahlen Bands, Christiansen Features (CF), and Transparency Features (TF) shift depending on the SiO2 and MgO contents. Also a shift of the Christiansen Feature of the glasses compared with the SCFM (SiO2/(SiO2+CaO+FeO+MgO)) index is observed. This shift could potentially help distinguish crystalline and amorphous material in remote sensing data. A comparison between the degree of polymerization of the glass and the width of the characteristic strong silicate feature shows a weak positive correlation. A comparison with a high-quality mid-IR spectrum of Mercury shows some moderate similarity to the results of this study, but does not explain all features.

  7. Improved measurements of mean sea surface velocity in the Nordic Seas from synthetic aperture radar (United States)

    Wergeland Hansen, Morten; Johnsen, Harald; Engen, Geir; Øie Nilsen, Jan Even


    The warm and saline surface Atlantic Water (AW) flowing into the Nordic Seas across the Greenland-Scotland ridge transports heat into the Arctic, maintaining the ice-free oceans and regulating sea-ice extent. The AW influences the region's relatively mild climate and is the northern branch of the global thermohaline overturning circulation. Heat loss in the Norwegian Sea is key for both heat transport and deep water formation. In general, the ocean currents in the Nordic Seas and the North Atlantic Ocean is a complex system of topographically steered barotropic and baroclinic currents of which the wind stress and its variability is a driver of major importance. The synthetic aperture radar (SAR) Doppler centroid shift has been demonstrated to contain geophysical information about sea surface wind, waves and current at an accuracy of 5 Hz and pixel spacing of 3.5 - 9 × 8 km2. This corresponds to a horizontal surface velocity of about 20 cm/s at 35° incidence angle. The ESA Prodex ISAR project aims to implement new and improved SAR Doppler shift processing routines to enable reprocessing of the wide swath acquisitions available from the Envisat ASAR archive (2002-2012) at higher resolution and better accuracy than previously obtained, allowing combined use with Sentinel-1 and Radarsat-2 retrievals to build timeseries of the sea surface velocity in the Nordic Seas. Estimation of the geophysical Doppler shift from new SAR Doppler centroid shift retrievals will be demonstrated, addressing key issues relating to geometric (satellite orbit and attitude) and electronic (antenna mis-pointing) contributions and corrections. Geophysical Doppler shift retrievals from one month of data in January 2010 and the inverted surface velocity in the Nordic Seas are then addressed and compared to other direct and indirect estimates of the upper ocean current, in particular those obtained in the ESA GlobCurrent project.

  8. Decolorization of industrial synthetic dyes using engineered Pseudomonas putida cells with surface-immobilized bacterial laccase

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Wei


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Microbial laccases are highly useful in textile effluent dye biodegradation. However, the bioavailability of cellularly expressed or purified laccases in continuous operations is usually limited by mass transfer impediment or enzyme regeneration difficulty. Therefore, this study develops a regenerable bacterial surface-displaying system for industrial synthetic dye decolorization, and evaluates its effects on independent and continuous operations. Results A bacterial laccase (WlacD was engineered onto the cell surface of the solvent-tolerant bacterium Pseudomonas putida to construct a whole-cell biocatalyst. Ice nucleation protein (InaQ anchor was employed, and the ability of 1 to 3 tandemly aligned N-terminal repeats to direct WlacD display were compared. Immobilized WlacD was determined to be surface-displayed in functional form using Western blot analysis, immunofluorescence microscopy, flow cytometry, and whole-cell enzymatic activity assay. Engineered P. putida cells were then applied to decolorize the anthraquinone dye Acid Green (AG 25 and diazo-dye Acid Red (AR 18. The results showed that decolorization of both dyes is Cu2+- and mediator-independent, with an optimum temperature of 35°C and pH of 3.0, and can be stably performed across a temperature range of 15°C to 45°C. A high activity toward AG25 (1 g/l with relative decolorization values of 91.2% (3 h and 97.1% (18 h, as well as high activity to AR18 (1 g/l by 80.5% (3 h and 89.0% (18 h, was recorded. The engineered system exhibited a comparably high activity compared with those of separate dyes in a continuous three-round shake-flask decolorization of AG25/AR18 mixed dye (each 1 g/l. No significant decline in decolorization efficacy was noted during first two-rounds but reaction equilibriums were elongated, and the residual laccase activity eventually decreased to low levels. However, the decolorizing capacity of the system was easily retrieved

  9. Rapid and sensitive detection of synthetic cannabinoids AMB-FUBINACA and α-PVP using surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) (United States)

    Islam, Syed K.; Cheng, Yin Pak; Birke, Ronald L.; Green, Omar; Kubic, Thomas; Lombardi, John R.


    The application of surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) has been reported as a fast and sensitive analytical method in the trace detection of the two most commonly known synthetic cannabinoids AMB-FUBINACA and alpha-pyrrolidinovalerophenone (α-PVP). FUBINACA and α-PVP are two of the most dangerous synthetic cannabinoids which have been reported to cause numerous deaths in the United States. While instruments such as GC-MS, LC-MS have been traditionally recognized as analytical tools for the detection of these synthetic drugs, SERS has been recently gaining ground in the analysis of these synthetic drugs due to its sensitivity in trace analysis and its effectiveness as a rapid method of detection. This present study shows the limit of detection of a concentration as low as picomolar for AMB-FUBINACA while for α-PVP, the limit of detection is in nanomolar concentration using SERS.

  10. Humeral stress remodelling locations differ in Thoroughbred racehorses training and racing on dirt compared to synthetic racetrack surfaces. (United States)

    Dimock, A N; Hoffman, K D; Puchalski, S M; Stover, S M


    Veterinarians have observed a putative change in the location of humeral stress remodelling in Thoroughbred racehorses with change from dirt to synthetic racetrack surfaces. To determine whether the location and severity of humeral stress remodelling differs between Thoroughbred racehorses exercising on dirt and synthetic racetrack surfaces, the potential significance of different locations of stress remodelling, and the potential usefulness of scintigraphy for prevention of complete humeral fracture. Scintigraphic images of humeri from 841 Thoroughbred racehorses at 3 racetracks during 2 years before and after conversion from dirt to synthetic surfaces were evaluated for location and severity of lesions. The effects of surface on lesion distributions were examined using Chi-square or Fisher's exact tests. Archived fractured humeri were examined to determine the location and severity of stress remodelling associated with complete fracture. Databases were queried to determine whether racehorses with scintigraphic lesions suffered humeral fracture and whether racehorses with a complete humeral fracture had had a scintigraphic examination. Horses at synthetic racetracks had a greater proportion of distal humeral lesions, whereas horses at dirt racetracks had a greater proportion of caudoproximal lesions (Pdirt surfaces, and, by inference, for horses examined using scintigraphy. © 2012 EVJ Ltd.

  11. Experimental inoculation of domestic cats (Felis domesticus) with Sarcocystis neurona or S. neurona-like merozoites. (United States)

    Butcher, M; Lakritz, J; Halaney, A; Branson, K; Gupta, G D; Kreeger, J; Marsh, A E


    Sarcocystis neurona is the parasite most commonly associated with equine protozoal myeloencephalitis (EPM). Recently, cats (Felis domesticus) have been demonstrated to be an experimental intermediate host in the life cycle of S. neurona. This study was performed to determine if cats experimentally inoculated with culture-derived S. neurona merozoites develop tissue sarcocysts infectious to opossums (Didelphis virginiana), the definitive host of S. neurona. Four cats were inoculated with S. neurona or S. neurona-like merozoites and all developed antibodies reacting to S. neurona merozoite antigens, but tissue sarcocysts were detected in only two cats. Muscle tissues from the experimentally inoculated cats with and without detectable sarcocysts were fed to laboratory-reared opossums. Sporocysts were detected in gastrointestinal (GI) scrapings of one opossum fed experimentally infected feline tissues. The study results suggest that cats can develop tissue cysts following inoculation with culture-derived Sarcocystis sp. merozoites in which the particular isolate was originally derived from a naturally infected cat with tissue sarcocysts. This is in contrast to cats which did not develop tissue cysts when inoculated with S. neurona merozoites originally derived from a horse with EPM. These results indicate present biological differences between the culture-derived merozoites of two Sarcocystis isolates, Sn-UCD 1 and Sn-Mucat 2.


    Synthetic phytochelatins (ECs) composed of (Glu–Cys)nGly are protein analogs of phytochelatin that exhibit improved metal-binding capacity over metallothioneins (MTs). Expression of EC20 on the surface of E. coli using the Lpp-OmpA anchor resulted in i...

  13. A Synthetic Phased Array Surface Acoustic Wave Sensor for Quantifying Bolt Tension

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rasim Guldiken


    Full Text Available In this paper, we report our findings on implementing a synthetic phased array surface acoustic wave sensor to quantify bolt tension. Maintaining proper bolt tension is important in many fields such as for ensuring safe operation of civil infrastructures. Significant advantages of this relatively simple methodology is its capability to assess bolt tension without any contact with the bolt, thus enabling measurement at inaccessible locations, multiple bolt measurement capability at a time, not requiring data collection during the installation and no calibration requirements. We performed detailed experiments on a custom-built flexible bench-top experimental setup consisting of 1018 steel plate of 12.7 mm (½ in thickness, a 6.4 mm (¼ in grade 8 bolt and a stainless steel washer with 19 mm (¾ in of external diameter. Our results indicate that this method is not only capable of clearly distinguishing properly bolted joints from loosened joints but also capable of quantifying how loose the bolt actually is. We also conducted detailed signal-to-noise (SNR analysis and showed that the SNR value for the entire bolt tension range was sufficient for image reconstruction.

  14. Lagrangian modelling of ocean surface waves and synthetic aperture radar wave measurements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fouques, Sebastien


    The present thesis is concerned with the estimation of the ocean wave spectrum from synthetic aperture radar imaging and the modelling of ocean surface waves using the Lagrangian formalism. The first part gives a short overview of the theories of ocean surface waves and synthetic aperture radar (SAR) whereas the second part consists of five independent publications. The first two articles investigate the influence of the radar backscatter model on the SAR imaging of ocean waves. In Article I, Monte Carlo simulations of SAR images of the ocean surface are carried out using a nonlinear backscatter model that include both specular reflection and Bragg scattering and the results are compared to simulations from the classical Hasselmann integral transform (Hasselmann and Hasselmann, 1991). It is shown that nonlinearities in the backscatter model strongly influence the imaging of range-travelling waves and that the former can suppress the range-splitting effect (Bruning et al., 1988). Furthermore, in Article II a database of Envisat-ASAR Wave Mode products co-located with directional wave spectra from the numerical model WAM and which contains range-travelling wave cases only, is set up. The WAM spectra are used as input to several ocean-to-SAR integral transforms, with various real aperture radar (RAR) models and the obtained SAR image cross-spectra are compared to the Envisat-ASAR observations. A first result is that the use of a linear backscatter model leads to a high proportion of non-physical negative backscatter values in the RAR image, as suggested by Schulz-Stellenfleth (2001). Then, a comparison between the observed SAR cross-spectra and the ones simulated through Hasselmann's integral transform reveals that only twenty percents of the observations show a range-splitting effect as strong as in the simulations. A much better agreement is obtained when using the integral transform by Schulz-Stellenfleth (2003), which is based on a nonlinear hackscatter model

  15. An automated live imaging platform for studying merozoite egress-invasion in malaria cultures. (United States)

    Crick, Alex J; Tiffert, Teresa; Shah, Sheel M; Kotar, Jurij; Lew, Virgilio L; Cicuta, Pietro


    Most cases of severe and fatal malaria are caused by the intraerythrocytic asexual reproduction cycle of Plasmodium falciparum. One of the most intriguing and least understood stages in this cycle is the brief preinvasion period during which dynamic merozoite-red-cell interactions align the merozoite apex in preparation for penetration. Studies of the molecular mechanisms involved in this process face formidable technical challenges, requiring multiple observations of merozoite egress-invasion sequences in live cultures under controlled experimental conditions, using high-resolution microscopy and a variety of fluorescent imaging tools. Here we describe a first successful step in the development of a fully automated, robotic imaging platform to enable such studies. Schizont-enriched live cultures of P. falciparum were set up on an inverted stage microscope with software-controlled motorized functions. By applying a variety of imaging filters and selection criteria, we identified infected red cells that were likely to rupture imminently, and recorded their coordinates. We developed a video-image analysis to detect and automatically record merozoite egress events in 100% of the 40 egress-invasion sequences recorded in this study. We observed a substantial polymorphism of the dynamic condition of pre-egress infected cells, probably reflecting asynchronies in the diversity of confluent processes leading to merozoite release. Copyright © 2013 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Recent developments in production and purification of malaria antigens: Harvest of Plasmodium falciparum merozoites from continuous culture* (United States)

    Mrema, J. E. K.; Campbell, G. H.; Jaramillo, A. L.; Miranda, R.; Rieckmann, K. H.


    Spontaneously released merozoites were harvested from cultures in which 42-90% of the erythrocytes had been infected with mature forms of Plasmodium falciparum at the start of incubation. The mature forms had been extracted from asynchronous cultures by the use of Ficoll and Plasmagel gradients. As the mature forms consisted of both trophozoites and schizonts, merozoites were released into the culture medium over a long period of time. The synchrony of merozoite release did not appear to be improved by prior exposure of parasites to sorbitol. Over this prolonged period of incubation, the yield of merozoites was disappointingly low in cultures containing 2.5% of erythrocytes. At erythrocyte concentrations of 0.01-0.25%, 3-10 times more merozoites were released into the medium; 0.4-2.3 merozoites per initial mature form were harvested over a 15-19-hour period. In addition to merozoites, contents of the culture medium included intact erythrocytes, ghost cells, and other cellular fragments. Only intact erythrocytes were effectively removed from the medium by simple or Ficoll gradient centrifugation. Merozoite preparations that are free from host cellular material are important in the development of a human malaria vaccine. ImagesFig. 3 PMID:397009

  17. Properties of natural and synthetic hydroxyapatite and their surface free energy determined by the thin-layer wicking method (United States)

    Szcześ, Aleksandra; Yan, Yingdi; Chibowski, Emil; Hołysz, Lucyna; Banach, Marcin


    Surface free energy is one of the parameters accompanying interfacial phenomena, occurring also in the biological systems. In this study the thin layer wicking method was used to determine surface free energy and its components for synthetic hydroxyapatite (HA) and natural one obtained from pig bones. The Raman, FTIR and X-Ray photoelectron spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction techniques and thermal analysis showed that both samples consist of carbonated hydroxyapatite without any organic components. Surface free energy and its apolar and polar components were found to be similar for both investigated samples and equalled γSTOT = 52.4 mJ/m2, γSLW = 40.2 mJ/m2 and γSAB = 12.3 mJ/m2 for the synthetic HA and γSTOT = 54.6 mJ/m2, γSLW = 40.3 mJ/m2 and γSAB = 14.3 mJ/m2 for the natural one. Both HA samples had different electron acceptor (γs+) and electron donor (γs-) parameters. The higher value of the electron acceptor was found for the natural HA whereas the electron donor one was higher for the synthetic HA

  18. Synthetic surface for expansion of human mesenchymal stem cells in xeno-free, chemically defined culture conditions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula J Dolley-Sonneville

    Full Text Available Human mesenchymal stem cells (HMSCS possess three properties of great interest for the development of cell therapies and tissue engineering: multilineage differentiation, immunomodulation, and production of trophic factors. Efficient ex vivo expansion of hMSCs is a challenging requirement for large scale production of clinical grade cells. Low-cost, robust, scalable culture methods using chemically defined materials need to be developed to address this need. This study describes the use of a xeno-free synthetic peptide acrylate surface, the Corning® Synthemax® Surface, for culture of hMSCs in serum-free, defined medium. Cell performance on the Corning Synthemax Surface was compared to cells cultured on biological extracellular matrix (ECM coatings in xeno-free defined medium and in traditional conditions on tissue culture treated (TCT plastic in fetal bovine serum (FBS supplemented medium. Our results show successful maintenance of hMSCs on Corning Synthemax Surface for eight passages, with cell expansion rate comparable to cells cultured on ECM and significantly higher than for cells in TCT/FBS condition. Importantly, on the Corning Synthemax Surface, cells maintained elongated, spindle-like morphology, typical hMSC marker profile and in vitro multilineage differentiation potential. We believe the Corning Synthemax Surface, in combination with defined media, provides a complete synthetic, xeno-free, cell culture system for scalable production of hMSCs.

  19. Optimization of Lead Removal via Napier Grass in Synthetic Brackish Water using Response Surface Model (United States)

    Hongsawat, P.; Suttiarporn, P.; Wutsanthia, K.; Kongsiri, G.


    The efficiency of the lead (Pb) phytoremediation by Napier grass was studied on the plant’s growth and plant’s tolerance on the Pb toxicity in synthetic brackish water. It was found that the plant was high tolerance to high level of Pb concentration (10 mg/l) in synthetic brackish water. Which revealed on the possibilities of plant’s growth under the presence of Pb contaminated condition. According to the Pb removal efficiency, the highest one (88.63±4.9%) was found at 10 ppm Pb concentration, 0.3 g/l NaCl concentration during the period 45 day. However, this study investigated the optimum condition for lead (Pb) removal from synthetic brackish water using phytoremediation treatment with Napier grass through a Box-Behnken Design. Three operational variables, i.e. Pb concentration (1, 5.5, 10 mg/l), NaCl (0.1, 0.3, 0.5 g/l) and period time (7, 26, 45 day), were determined. The results were provided evidence that the highest Pb removal efficiency (93.56%) from synthetic brackish water via Napier grass was Pb and NaCl concentration at 10 mg/l and 0.5 g/l during 45 day.

  20. Generation of synthetic surface electromyography signals under fatigue conditions for varying force inputs using feedback control algorithm. (United States)

    Venugopal, G; Deepak, P; Ghosh, Diptasree M; Ramakrishnan, S


    Surface electromyography is a non-invasive technique used for recording the electrical activity of neuromuscular systems. These signals are random, complex and multi-component. There are several techniques to extract information about the force exerted by muscles during any activity. This work attempts to generate surface electromyography signals for various magnitudes of force under isometric non-fatigue and fatigue conditions using a feedback model. The model is based on existing current distribution, volume conductor relations, the feedback control algorithm for rate coding and generation of firing pattern. The result shows that synthetic surface electromyography signals are highly complex in both non-fatigue and fatigue conditions. Furthermore, surface electromyography signals have higher amplitude and lower frequency under fatigue condition. This model can be used to study the influence of various signal parameters under fatigue and non-fatigue conditions.

  1. Data Assimilation of AirSWOT and Synthetically Derived SWOT Observations of Water Surface Elevation in a Multichannel River (United States)

    Altenau, E. H.; Pavelsky, T.; Andreadis, K.; Bates, P. D.; Neal, J. C.


    Multichannel rivers continue to be challenging features to quantify, especially at regional and global scales, which is problematic because accurate representations of such environments are needed to properly monitor the earth's water cycle as it adjusts to climate change. It has been demonstrated that higher-complexity, 2D models outperform lower-complexity, 1D models in simulating multichannel river hydraulics at regional scales due to the inclusion of the channel network's connectivity. However, new remote sensing measurements from the future Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT) mission and it's airborne analog AirSWOT offer new observations that can be used to try and improve the lower-complexity, 1D models to achieve accuracies closer to the higher-complexity, 2D codes. Here, we use an Ensemble Kalman Filter (EnKF) to assimilate AirSWOT water surface elevation (WSE) measurements from a 2015 field campaign into a 1D hydrodynamic model along a 90 km reach of Tanana River, AK. This work is the first to test data assimilation methods using real SWOT-like data from AirSWOT. Additionally, synthetic SWOT observations of WSE are generated across the same study site using a fine-resolution 2D model and assimilated into the coarser-resolution 1D model. Lastly, we compare the abilities of AirSWOT and the synthetic-SWOT observations to improve spatial and temporal model outputs in WSEs. Results indicate 1D model outputs of spatially distributed WSEs improve as observational coverage increases, and improvements in temporal fluctuations in WSEs depend on the number of observations. Furthermore, results reveal that assimilation of AirSWOT observations produce greater error reductions in 1D model outputs compared to synthetic SWOT observations due to lower measurement errors. Both AirSWOT and the synthetic SWOT observations significantly lower spatial and temporal errors in 1D model outputs of WSEs.

  2. Cell surface damage and morphological changes in Oenococcus oeni after freeze-drying and incubation in synthetic wine. (United States)

    Bravo-Ferrada, Bárbara Mercedes; Gonçalves, Sónia; Semorile, Liliana; Santos, Nuno C; Brizuela, Natalia; Elizabeth Tymczyszyn, E; Hollmann, Axel


    The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of freeze-drying in the presence of trehalose as a cryoprotectant, followed by incubation in synthetic wine, on surface damage, viability and l-malic acid consumption of the oenological strain Oenococcus oeni UNQOe 73.2. After freeze-drying, no significant differences were observed in the number of viable cells (for both acclimated and non-acclimated cultures) respect to the fresh culture. In contrast, loss of viability was observed after wine incubation for 24 h, being acclimated freeze-dried cells the best conditions for this. After the preservation process, small changes in cell morphology were observed by Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM). The Zeta potential and AFM showed that 24 h of wine incubation was enough to induce several cell surface modifications. Plate count data allowed us to establish that surface damage is an important factor for loss of viability, regardless of the acclimation treatment. Although the number of surviving O. oeni cells decreased dramatically after incubation in synthetic wine for 15 days, the consumption of l-malic acid was higher than 70%, with freeze-dried cells showing a better performance than fresh cultures. These results demonstrate that O. oeni freeze-dried cultures could be applied to direct wine inoculation, to conduct malolactic fermentation, maintaining its technological properties and reducing the time and costs of the winemaking process. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  3. Changes in silver nanoparticles exposed to human synthetic stomach fluid: Effects of particle size and surface chemistry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mwilu, Samuel K.; El Badawy, Amro M.; Bradham, Karen; Nelson, Clay; Thomas, David; Scheckel, Kirk G.; Tolaymat, Thabet; Ma, Longzhou; Rogers, Kim R.


    The significant rise in consumer products and applications utilizing the antibacterial properties of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) has increased the possibility of human exposure. The mobility and bioavailability of AgNPs through the ingestion pathway will depend, in part, on properties such as particle size and the surface chemistries that will influence their physical and chemical reactivities during transit through the gastrointestinal tract. This study investigates the interactions between synthetic stomach fluid and AgNPs of different sizes and with different capping agents. Changes in morphology, size and chemical composition were determined during a 30 min exposure to synthetic human stomach fluid (SSF) using Absorbance Spectroscopy, High Resolution Transmission Electron and Scanning Electron Microscopy (TEM/SEM), Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS), and Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis (NTA). AgNPs exposed to SSF were found to aggregate significantly and also released ionic silver which physically associated with the particle aggregates as silver chloride. Generally, the smaller sized AgNPs (< 10 nm) showed higher rates of aggregation and physical transformation than larger particles (75 nm). Polyvinylpyrrolidone (pvp)-stabilized AgNPs prepared in house behaved differently in SSF than particles obtained from a commercial source despite having similar surface coating and size distribution characteristics. - Highlights: ► Interactions between synthetic stomach fluid (SSF) and silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are described. ► AgNPs exposed to SSF aggregate and silver chloride are associated with the particle aggregates. ► Smaller AgNPs (< 10 nm) showed higher rates of aggregation and transformation than larger particles (75 nm). ► Polyvinylpyrrolidone-stabilized AgNPs obtained from different sources aggregated at different rates when exposed to SSF

  4. Synthetic Landau Levels and Spinor Vortex Matter on a Haldane Spherical Surface with a Magnetic Monopole. (United States)

    Zhou, Xiang-Fa; Wu, Congjun; Guo, Guang-Can; Wang, Ruquan; Pu, Han; Zhou, Zheng-Wei


    We present a flexible scheme to realize exact flat Landau levels on curved spherical geometry in a system of spinful cold atoms. This is achieved by applying the Floquet engineering of a magnetic quadrupole field to create a synthetic monopole field in real space. The system can be exactly mapped to the electron-monopole system on a sphere, thus realizing Haldane's spherical geometry for fractional quantum Hall physics. This method works for either bosons or fermions. We investigate the ground-state vortex pattern for an s-wave interacting atomic condensate by mapping this system to the classical Thompson's problem. The distortion and stability of the vortex pattern are further studied in the presence of dipolar interaction. Our scheme is compatible with the current experimental setup, and may serve as a promising route of investigating quantum Hall physics and exotic spinor vortex matter on curved space.

  5. Immobilization, hybridization, and oxidation of synthetic DNA on gold surface: Electron transfer investigated by electrochemistry and scanning tunneling microscopy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McEwen, Gerald D.; Chen Fan [Biological Engineering Program, Department of Biological and Irrigation Engineering, Utah State University, 4105 Old Main Hill, Logan, UT 84322-4105 (United States); Zhou Anhong, E-mail: [Biological Engineering Program, Department of Biological and Irrigation Engineering, Utah State University, 4105 Old Main Hill, Logan, UT 84322-4105 (United States)


    Fundamental understanding of interfacial electron transfer (ET) among electrolyte/DNA/solid-surface will facilitate the design for electrical detection of DNA molecules. In this report, the electron transfer characteristics of synthetic DNA (sequence from pathogenic Cryptosporidium parvum) self-assembled on a gold surface was electrochemically studied. The effects of immobilization order on the interface ET related parameters such as diffusion coefficient (D{sub 0}), surface coverage ({theta}{sub R}), and monolayer thickness (d{sub i}) were determined by cyclic voltammetry (CV) and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). DNA surface density ({Gamma}{sub DNA}) was determined by the integration of the charge of the electro-oxidation current peaks during the initial cyclic voltammetry scans. It was found that the DNA surface densities at different modifications followed the order: {Gamma}{sub DNA} (dsS-DNA/Au) > {Gamma}{sub DNA} (MCH/dsS-DNA/Au) > {Gamma}{sub DNA} (dsS-DNA/MCH/Au). It was also revealed that the electro-oxidation of the DNA modified gold surface would involve the oxidation of nucleotides (guanine and adenine) with a 5.51 electron transfer mechanism and the oxidative desorption of DNA and MCH molecules by a 3 electron transfer mechanism. STM topography and current image analysis indicated that the surface conductivity after each surface modification followed the order: dsS-DNA/Au < MCH/dsS-DNA/Au < oxidized MCH/dsS-DNA/Au < Hoechst/oxidized MCH/dsS-DNA/Au. The results from this study suggested a combination of variations in immobilization order may provide an alternative approach for the optimization of DNA hybridization and the further development for electrical detection of DNA.

  6. Mass spectrometric investigation of synthetic glycoside of muramyl dipeptide immobilized on fumed silica surface

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kulik, Tetiana V., E-mail: [O.O. Chuiko Institute of Surface Chemistry, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, 17 Generala Naumova Str., Kyiv 03164 (Ukraine); Azizova, Liana R., E-mail: [O.O. Chuiko Institute of Surface Chemistry, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, 17 Generala Naumova Str., Kyiv 03164 (Ukraine); Palyanytsya, Borys B. [O.O. Chuiko Institute of Surface Chemistry, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, 17 Generala Naumova Str., Kyiv 03164 (Ukraine); Zemlyakov, Alexander E.; Tsikalova, Victoria N. [Vernadsky Tauric National University, pr. Akademika Vernadskogo 4, Simferopol, 95007 (Ukraine)


    N-Acetylmuramyl-L-alanyl-D-isoglutamine or muramyl dipeptide is a cleavage product of peptidoglycan by lysozyme. This study explored the use of the temperature-programmed desorption mass spectrometry (TPDMS) in analysis of glycoside of muramyl dipeptide: O-{l_brace}(4-tert-butylcyclohexyl)-2-acetamido-2, 3-dideoxy-{beta}-D-glucopyranoside-3-yl{r_brace}-D-lactoyl-L-alanyl-D-isoglutamine (MDP) on the surface of fumed silica. Stages of pyrolysis of MDP in condensed state and on the silica surface have been determined. Three stages have been clear identified under pyrolysis of MDP on the silica surface. Kinetic parameters of thermal reactions on the fumed silica surface and in the condensed state have been calculated.

  7. Characterizing the surface charge of synthetic nanomembranes by the streaming potential method


    Datta, Subhra; Conlisk, A. T.; Kanani, Dharmesh M.; Zydney, Andrew L.; Fissell, William H.; Roy, Shuvo


    The inference of the surface charge of polyethylene glycol (PEG)-coated and uncoated silicon membranes with nanoscale pore sizes from streaming potential measurements in the presence of finite electric double layer (EDL) effects is studied theoretically and experimentally. The developed theoretical model for inferring the pore wall surface charge density from streaming potential measurements is applicable to arbitrary pore cross-sectional shapes and accounts for the effect of finite salt conc...

  8. In-syringe dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction with liquid chromatographic determination of synthetic pyrethroids in surface water

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saeed S. Albaseer


    Full Text Available An indigenously fabricated in laboratory glass syringe was used for in-syringe dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (is-DLLME and preconcentration of synthetic pyrethroids (SPs from surface waters suitable for their determination by high performance liquid chromatography. In contrast to classical DLLME, is-DLLME allows the use of lighter-than-water organic solvents and the analysis of environmental contaminants’ samples without prior filtration, which is of great importance due to the high affinity of pyrethroids to adsorb to solid particulates present in environmental samples. The effects of various parameters on the extraction efficiency were evaluated and optimized systemically using one-factor-at-a-time method (OFAT and statistically using full factorial design (24. Three SPs (viz.; cypermethrin, resmethrin and permethrin were analyzed. The method showed good accuracy with RSD% in the range of of 4.8–6.9%. The method detection limits of the three pesticides ranged from 0.14 to 0.16 ng mL-1. The proposed method was applied for the determination of synthetic pyrethroids in lake water

  9. Water resistance and surface morphology of synthetic fabrics covered by polysiloxane/acrylate followed by electron beam irradiation

    CERN Document Server

    El-Naggar, A M; Mohammed, S S; Alam, E A


    Different synthetic fabrics were treated by electron beam surface coating with two formulations based on polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) and polystyrene (PS) or poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) oligomers. The water resistance properties were investigated in terms of the percentage of water repellency and absorption. Also, the surface coated fabrics were examined by scanning electron microscopy/microscope (SEM) connected to an energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) unit to determine the percentage atomic contents of elements. The results showed that the adhesion of the polysiloxane formulation to the surface depends largely on the kind of acrylate oligomer and textile fabric as indicated by the EDX analysis for silicon. In this regard, PDMS/PS formulation is more compatible with polyester and nylon-6 fabrics than PDMS/PMMA one. However, it was found that PDMS/PMMA formulation is more compatible with cotton/polyester blend than PDMS/PS. The SEM micrographs give further supports to the EDX analysis. On the basis of the perce...

  10. On the problem of radiation purification of waste waters containing synthetic surface-active agents

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buslaeva, S.P.; Kon'kov, N.G.; Makarochkina, L.M.; Panin, Yu.A.; Upadyshev, L.B.; Filippov, M.T.


    Radiation decomposition of artificial solutions containing surface-active substances and the real sewage of textile factories is studied. Experiments on treatment of sewage in a foamed state were conducted (since the irradiation of sewage in a liquid form did not result in the desired effect) with a laboratory installation that made it possible to irradiate sewage by an electron beam both under stationary and flowing conditions. The dose rate was about 140 w/kg. The results of determination of the dependence of the decomposition rate for solutions that contain surface-active substances on the absorbed dose and the magnitude of the beam current are presented. It is demonstrated that the decrease of dose rate is accompanied by the increase of the yield of the surface-active substance decomposition in the foam. During irradiation of real sewage the improvement of their coloring as well as the acceleration of coagulation and the sedimentation of dissolved and suspended substances were observed. Recommendations are suggested for design of an experimental-industrial installation for irradiation of sewage. It is established that with the efficiency of 1000 m 3 /day the cost of sewage treatment will be 35-40 kop/m 3

  11. Analyses of Interactions Between Heparin and the Apical Surface Proteins of Plasmodium falciparum (United States)

    Kobayashi, Kyousuke; Takano, Ryo; Takemae, Hitoshi; Sugi, Tatsuki; Ishiwa, Akiko; Gong, Haiyan; Recuenco, Frances C.; Iwanaga, Tatsuya; Horimoto, Taisuke; Akashi, Hiroomi; Kato, Kentaro


    Heparin, a sulfated glycoconjugate, reportedly inhibits the blood-stage growth of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Elucidation of the inhibitory mechanism is valuable for developing novel invasion-blocking treatments based on heparin. Merozoite surface protein 1 has been reported as a candidate target of heparin; however, to better understand the molecular mechanisms involved, we characterized the molecules that bind to heparin during merozoite invasion. Here, we show that heparin binds only at the apical tip of the merozoite surface and that multiple heparin-binding proteins localize preferentially in the apical organelles. To identify heparin-binding proteins, parasite proteins were fractionated by means of heparin affinity chromatography and subjected to immunoblot analysis with ligand-specific antibodies. All tested members of the Duffy and reticulocyte binding-like families bound to heparin with diverse affinities. These findings suggest that heparin masks the apical surface of merozoites and blocks interaction with the erythrocyte membrane after initial attachment.

  12. Infrared and Raman spectroscopy on synthetic glasses as analogues of planetary surfaces. (United States)

    Weber, Iris; Morlok, Andreas; Klemme, Stephan; Dittmer, Isabelle; Stojic, Aleksandra N.; Hiesinger, Harald; Sohn, Martin; Helbert, Jörn


    One of the fundamental aims of space mission is to understand the physical, chemical, and geologic processes and conditions of planetary formation and evolution. For this purpose, it is important to investigate analog material to correctly interpret the returned spacecraft data, including the spectral information from remote planetary surfaces. For example, mid-infrared spectroscopy provides detailed information on the mineralogical compositions of planetary surfaces via remote sensing. Data is affected by numerous factors such as grain size, illumination geometry, space weathering, and temperature. These features need to be systematically investigated on analog material in terrestrial laboratories in order to understand the mineralogy/composition of a planetary surface. In addition, Raman spectroscopy allows non-destructive analyses of planetary surfaces in the case of a landing mission. Our work at the IRIS (Infrared spectroscopy for Interplanetary Studies) laboratory at the Institut für Planetologie produces spectra for a database of the ESA/JAXA BepiColombo mission to Mercury. Onboard is a mid-infrared spectrometer (MERTIS-Mercury Radiometer and Thermal Infrared Spectrometer). This unique instrument allows us to map spectral features in the 7-14 µm range, with a spatial resolution of ~500 m [1-5]. Comparably, using our Raman spectrometer, we are continuously contributing to the Raman database for upcoming mission, e.g., the Raman Laser Spectrometer (RLS) onboard of ExoMars [6]. Material on the surface of Mercury and the other terrestrial bodies was exposed to heavy impact cratering [4]. Depending on the P/T conditions during the impact, minerals on planetary surfaces can react with the formation of glassy material. Thus, understanding the effects of impact shock and heat on the mineral structure and the resulting corresponding change in the spectral properties is of high interest for the MERTIS project. Here, we present spectral information on the first glass

  13. Green technologies in natural and synthetic surfaces use for dumps reclamation (United States)

    Klimkina, Iryna; Fedotov, Viacheslav; Heilmeier, Hermann


    Last 50 years coal dumps reclamation in Ukraine was based on two- or three-layer models. These models use a fertile substratum underneath a black soil (chernozem) layer 0.5 m thick (Model 1) or 0.70-1 m thick (Model 2). Model 3 has 3 layers. The deepest layer is a substrate which is phytotoxic or unfavourable for crop growth (coal-bearing substrates with a high content of pyrite, saline substrates). The second layers acts as a protective shield and consist of loess (0.5 m). The third is the layer of fertile chernozem (0.3-0.8 m). However, due to the situation of a shortage of fertile soils, a lack of nutrient elements in the waste rock, and a moisture deficit with strong rock acidification, it is considered important to develop new non-traditional reclamation methods based on the geo-synthetic materials used in conjunction with sowing lawn grasses or grass seeds inside. The geogrids and biogeotextiles made from natural materials such as hemp, flax, jute, coconut and other plant biopolymer fibers are recommended for bioremediation. The biodegradable carcass of reclamation covering materials stabilises the slopes, effectively restraints the soil particles from leaching and blowing, and prevents wash-out of the plant seeds, as well as protecting them from being eaten by animals. The research object of the presented work was the coal dumps of sulfide rocks in Western Donbass (Ukraine). These rocks are characterized by low level of the maximum hygroscopic moisture (4.3%) and moisture content not available for plant growth (5-6%). Also the rock has an average level of salinity, mainly of the sulphate type. The main goal of the study was to justify the use of some non-traditional materials such as burlap (jute cloth), agricultural fibers (light non-woven material from polypropylene fiber of spun-bond type) and a padding of polyester in the capacity of a geosynthetic substrate as a basis for the mixed grass crop that enable a reduction in the bioremediation costs (in

  14. A comparison of visual observations of surface oil with Synthetic Aperture Radar imagery of the Sea Empress oil spill

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jones, B.


    A comparison has been made between the visual observations of surface oil and four satellite-borne Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) images taken during the Sea Empress oil spill in February 1996. Whilst the basic oil slick imaging capabilities of SAR are well documented, to be of use at the time of a major oil spill, the imagery must be able to provide information on the thickness of oil. This analysis suggests that, under certain environmental conditions, this is possible. The optimum wind speed for the identification of heavy surface oil is around 5-6 m s{sup -1}. At this wind speed, light and medium sheen is not evident in the imagery and there is a distinction between the backscatter reductions due to heavy sheen and thick brown/black oil. At higher wind speeds, even thick oil slicks readily mix into the water column and their SAR signature weakens. In light winds, pattern recognition is very important to the identification of oil sticks. The images are more sensitive to the presence of sheen within the sheltered waters of Milford Haven than in the open coastal waters, indicating a possible relationship between sheen visibility in satellite-borne SAR and sea state. (author)

  15. Estimation of surface roughness in a semiarid region from C-band ERS-1 synthetic aperture radar data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. E. Sano


    Full Text Available In this study, we investigated the feasibility of using the C-band European Remote Sensing Satellite (ERS-1 synthetic aperture radar (SAR data to estimate surface soil roughness in a semiarid rangeland. Radar backscattering coefficients were extracted from a dry and a wet season SAR image and were compared with 47 in situ soil roughness measurements obtained in the rocky soils of the Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed, southeastern Arizona, USA. Both the dry and the wet season SAR data showed exponential relationships with root mean square (RMS height measurements. The dry C-band ERS-1 SAR data were strongly correlated (R² = 0.80, while the wet season SAR data have somewhat higher secondary variation (R² = 0.59. This lower correlation was probably provoked by the stronger influence of soil moisture, which may not be negligible in the wet season SAR data. We concluded that the single configuration C-band SAR data is useful to estimate surface roughness of rocky soils in a semiarid rangeland.

  16. Spreading properties of cosmetic emollients: Use of synthetic skin surface to elucidate structural effect. (United States)

    Douguet, Marine; Picard, Céline; Savary, Géraldine; Merlaud, Fabien; Loubat-Bouleuc, Nathalie; Grisel, Michel


    The study focuses on the impact of structural and physicochemical properties of emollients on their spreadability. Fifty-three emollients, among which esters, silicones, vegetable and mineral oils, have been characterized. Their viscosity, surface tension, density and spreadability have been measured. Vitro-skin ® , an artificial skin substitute, was used as an artificial porous substrate to measure spreadability. Two different methods have been selected to characterize spreadability, namely contact angle and spreading value. Dynamic contact angle measurements showed that emollient spreadability is first governed by spontaneous spreading and that, in a second phase, absorption and migration into the porous substrate becomes the driver of the extension of the spreading area. Statistical analysis of physicochemical and spreading value data revealed that viscosity has a major impact on the spreading behavior of emollients whatever their chemical type. A special emphasis was placed on the ester family in which chemical diversity is very wide. The results highlighted a difference between "high viscosity esters" for which viscosity is the main factor impacting spreadability and "low viscosity esters" for which structural variations (mono/diester, saturated/unsaturated chain, linear/branched chain) have to be considered in addition to viscosity. Linear regressions were used to express spreading value as a function of viscosity for each of the four emollient families tested (esters, silicones, vegetable and mineral oils). These regressions allowed the development of reliable predictive models as a powerful tool for formulators to forecast spreadability of emollients. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Exposure to Sarcocystis spp. in horses from Spain determined by Western blot analysis using Sarcocystis neurona merozoites as heterologous antigen. (United States)

    Arias, M; Yeargan, M; Francisco, I; Dangoudoubiyam, S; Becerra, P; Francisco, R; Sánchez-Andrade, R; Paz-Silva, A; Howe, D K


    Horses serve as an intermediate host for several species of Sarcocystis, all of which utilize canids as the definitive host. Sarcocystis spp. infection and formation of latent sarcocysts in horses often appears to be subclinical, but morbidity can occur, especially when the parasite burden is large. A serological survey was conducted to determine the presence of antibodies against Sarcocystis spp. in seemingly healthy horses from the Galicia region of Spain. Western blot analyses using Sarcocystis neurona merozoites as heterologous antigen suggested greater than 80% seroprevalance of Sarcocystis spp. in a sample set of 138 horses. The serum samples were further tested with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) based on recombinant S. neurona-specific surface antigens (rSnSAGs). As expected for horses from the Eastern Hemisphere, less than 4% of the serum samples were positive when analyzed with either the rSnSAG2 or the rSnSAG4/3 ELISAs. An additional 246 horses were tested using the rSnSAG2 ELISA, which revealed that less than 3% of the 384 samples were seropositive. Collectively, the results of this serologic study suggested that a large proportion of horses from this region of Spain are exposed to Sarcocystis spp. Furthermore, the anti-Sarcocystis seroreactivity in these European horses could be clearly distinguished from anti-S. neurona antibodies using the rSnSAG2 and rSnSAG4/3 ELISAs. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. UV-protection of Natural and Synthetic Fabrics by Surface Treatment under the effect of Gamma Irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    El-Naggar, AW.M.; Zohdy, M.H.; Ali, N.M.


    Synthetic and natural fabrics were surface coated with gamma radiation curable novel formulations. These formulations were based on naturally occurring Alum individually and in binary mixture with ZnO beside different functional oligomers and monomers. The physical properties of the treated fabrics were evaluated in terms of ultraviolet protection, moisture regain, and water absorption. Also, the effect of coating formulations on the crystallinity was investigated by X-ray diffraction (XRD). The results of ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) showed that the formulation containing 30% of Alum caused a significant UPF values (50+) according to standard rating over untreated fabrics. When ZnO was incorporated in the formulation, the UPF factor was increased by two folds. A decrease in the moisture regain and water absorption of fabrics was featured with ZnO, however, in case of Alum a decrease followed by an increase was observed. In conclusion, these novel coats could be taken as an nontoxic alternative UV-resist finishing agents for fabrics

  19. Naturally acquired antibodies target the glutamate-rich protein on intact merozoites and predict protection against febrile malaria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kana, Ikhlaq Hussain; Adu, Bright; Tiendrebeogo, Régis Wendpayangde


    febrile malaria. Similarly, GLURP-specific antibodies previously shown to be protective against febrile malaria in this same cohort were significantly associated with OP activity in this study. GLURP-specific antibodies recognized merozoites and also mediated OP activity. Conclusions.: These findings......Background.: Plasmodium species antigens accessible at the time of merozoite release are likely targets of biologically functional antibodies. Methods.: Immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies against intact merozoites were quantified in the plasma of Ghanaian children from a longitudinal cohort using...... a novel flow cytometry-based immunofluorescence assay. Functionality of these antibodies, as well as glutamate-rich protein (GLURP)-specific affinity-purified IgG from malaria hyperimmune Liberian adults, was assessed by the opsonic phagocytosis (OP) assay. Results.: Opsonic phagocytosis activity...

  20. NOAA high resolution sea surface winds data from Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) on the RADARSAT-2 satellite (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR)-derived high resolution wind products are calculated from high resolution SAR images of normalized radar cross section (NRCS) of the...

  1. Opsonising antibodies to P. falciparum merozoites associated with immunity to clinical malaria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danika L Hill

    Full Text Available Naturally acquired humoral immunity to the malarial parasite Plasmodium falciparum can protect against disease, although the precise mechanisms remain unclear. Although antibody levels can be measured by ELISA, few studies have investigated functional antibody assays in relation to clinical outcomes. In this study we applied a recently developed functional assay of antibody-mediated opsonisation of merozoites, to plasma samples from a longitudinal cohort study conducted in a malaria endemic region of Papua New Guinea (PNG. Phagocytic activity was quantified by flow cytometry using a standardized and high-throughput protocol, and was subsequently evaluated for association with protection from clinical malaria and high-density parasitemia. Opsonising antibody responses were found to: i increase with age, ii be enhanced by concurrent infection, and iii correlate with protection from clinical episodes and high-density parasitemia. Stronger protective associations were observed in individuals with no detectable parasitemia at baseline. This study presents the first evidence for merozoite phagocytosis as a correlate of acquired immunity and clinical protection against P. falciparum malaria.

  2. Comparison of allele frequencies of Plasmodium falciparum merozoite antigens in malaria infections sampled in different years in a Kenyan population. (United States)

    Ochola-Oyier, Lynette Isabella; Okombo, John; Wagatua, Njoroge; Ochieng, Jacob; Tetteh, Kevin K; Fegan, Greg; Bejon, Philip; Marsh, Kevin


    Plasmodium falciparum merozoite antigens elicit antibody responses in malaria-endemic populations, some of which are clinically protective, which is one of the reasons why merozoite antigens are the focus of malaria vaccine development efforts. Polymorphisms in several merozoite antigen-encoding genes are thought to arise as a result of selection by the human immune system. The allele frequency distribution of 15 merozoite antigens over a two-year period, 2007 and 2008, was examined in parasites obtained from children with uncomplicated malaria. In the same population, allele frequency changes pre- and post-anti-malarial treatment were also examined. Any gene which showed a significant shift in allele frequencies was also assessed longitudinally in asymptomatic and complicated malaria infections. Fluctuating allele frequencies were identified in codons 147 and 148 of reticulocyte-binding homologue (Rh) 5, with a shift from HD to YH haplotypes over the two-year period in uncomplicated malaria infections. However, in both the asymptomatic and complicated malaria infections YH was the dominant and stable haplotype over the two-year and ten-year periods, respectively. A logistic regression analysis of all three malaria infection populations between 2007 and 2009 revealed, that the chance of being infected with the HD haplotype decreased with time from 2007 to 2009 and increased in the uncomplicated and asymptomatic infections. Rh5 codons 147 and 148 showed heterogeneity at both an individual and population level and may be under some degree of immune selection.

  3. A threshold concentration of anti-merozoite antibodies is required for protection from clinical episodes of malaria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Murungi, Linda M; Kamuyu, Gathoni; Lowe, Brett


    Antibodies to selected Plasmodium falciparum merozoite antigens are often reported to be associated with protection from malaria in one epidemiological cohort, but not in another. Here, we sought to understand this paradox by exploring the hypothesis that a threshold concentration of antibodies i...

  4. Immune-mediated competition in rodent malaria is most likely caused by induced changes in innate immune clearance of merozoites.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jayanthi Santhanam


    Full Text Available Malarial infections are often genetically diverse, leading to competitive interactions between parasites. A quantitative understanding of the competition between strains is essential to understand a wide range of issues, including the evolution of virulence and drug resistance. In this study, we use dynamical-model based Bayesian inference to investigate the cause of competitive suppression of an avirulent clone of Plasmodium chabaudi (AS by a virulent clone (AJ in immuno-deficient and competent mice. We test whether competitive suppression is caused by clone-specific differences in one or more of the following processes: adaptive immune clearance of merozoites and parasitised red blood cells (RBCs, background loss of merozoites and parasitised RBCs, RBC age preference, RBC infection rate, burst size, and within-RBC interference. These processes were parameterised in dynamical mathematical models and fitted to experimental data. We found that just one parameter μ, the ratio of background loss rate of merozoites to invasion rate of mature RBCs, needed to be clone-specific to predict the data. Interestingly, μ was found to be the same for both clones in single-clone infections, but different between the clones in mixed infections. The size of this difference was largest in immuno-competent mice and smallest in immuno-deficient mice. This explains why competitive suppression was alleviated in immuno-deficient mice. We found that competitive suppression acts early in infection, even before the day of peak parasitaemia. These results lead us to argue that the innate immune response clearing merozoites is the most likely, but not necessarily the only, mediator of competitive interactions between virulent and avirulent clones. Moreover, in mixed infections we predict there to be an interaction between the clones and the innate immune response which induces changes in the strength of its clearance of merozoites. What this interaction is unknown, but

  5. Rapid, nondestructive estimation of surface polymer layer thickness using attenuated total reflection fourier transform infrared (ATR FT-IR) spectroscopy and synthetic spectra derived from optical principles. (United States)

    Weinstock, B André; Guiney, Linda M; Loose, Christopher


    We have developed a rapid, nondestructive analytical method that estimates the thickness of a surface polymer layer with high precision but unknown accuracy using a single attenuated total reflection Fourier transform infrared (ATR FT-IR) measurement. Because the method is rapid, nondestructive, and requires no sample preparation, it is ideal as a process analytical technique. Prior to implementation, the ATR FT-IR spectrum of the substrate layer pure component and the ATR FT-IR and real refractive index spectra of the surface layer pure component must be known. From these three input spectra a synthetic mid-infrared spectral matrix of surface layers 0 nm to 10,000 nm thick on substrate is created de novo. A minimum statistical distance match between a process sample's ATR FT-IR spectrum and the synthetic spectral matrix provides the thickness of that sample. We show that this method can be used to successfully estimate the thickness of polysulfobetaine surface modification, a hydrated polymeric surface layer covalently bonded onto a polyetherurethane substrate. A database of 1850 sample spectra was examined. Spectrochemical matrix-effect unknowns, such as the nonuniform and molecularly novel polysulfobetaine-polyetherurethane interface, were found to be minimal. A partial least squares regression analysis of the database spectra versus their thicknesses as calculated by the method described yielded an estimate of precision of ±52 nm.

  6. Insights from Synthetic Star-forming Regions. II. Verifying Dust Surface Density, Dust Temperature, and Gas Mass Measurements With Modified Blackbody Fitting

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koepferl, Christine M.; Robitaille, Thomas P. [Max Planck Institute for Astronomy, Königstuhl 17, D-69117 Heidelberg (Germany); Dale, James E., E-mail: [University Observatory Munich, Scheinerstr. 1, D-81679 Munich (Germany)


    We use a large data set of realistic synthetic observations (produced in Paper I of this series) to assess how observational techniques affect the measurement physical properties of star-forming regions. In this part of the series (Paper II), we explore the reliability of the measured total gas mass, dust surface density and dust temperature maps derived from modified blackbody fitting of synthetic Herschel observations. We find from our pixel-by-pixel analysis of the measured dust surface density and dust temperature a worrisome error spread especially close to star formation sites and low-density regions, where for those “contaminated” pixels the surface densities can be under/overestimated by up to three orders of magnitude. In light of this, we recommend to treat the pixel-based results from this technique with caution in regions with active star formation. In regions of high background typical in the inner Galactic plane, we are not able to recover reliable surface density maps of individual synthetic regions, since low-mass regions are lost in the far-infrared background. When measuring the total gas mass of regions in moderate background, we find that modified blackbody fitting works well (absolute error: + 9%; −13%) up to 10 kpc distance (errors increase with distance). Commonly, the initial images are convolved to the largest common beam-size, which smears contaminated pixels over large areas. The resulting information loss makes this commonly used technique less verifiable as now χ {sup 2} values cannot be used as a quality indicator of a fitted pixel. Our control measurements of the total gas mass (without the step of convolution to the largest common beam size) produce similar results (absolute error: +20%; −7%) while having much lower median errors especially for the high-mass stellar feedback phase. In upcoming papers (Paper III; Paper IV) of this series we test the reliability of measured star formation rate with direct and indirect

  7. Insights from Synthetic Star-forming Regions. II. Verifying Dust Surface Density, Dust Temperature, and Gas Mass Measurements with Modified Blackbody Fitting (United States)

    Koepferl, Christine M.; Robitaille, Thomas P.; Dale, James E.


    We use a large data set of realistic synthetic observations (produced in Paper I of this series) to assess how observational techniques affect the measurement physical properties of star-forming regions. In this part of the series (Paper II), we explore the reliability of the measured total gas mass, dust surface density and dust temperature maps derived from modified blackbody fitting of synthetic Herschel observations. We find from our pixel-by-pixel analysis of the measured dust surface density and dust temperature a worrisome error spread especially close to star formation sites and low-density regions, where for those “contaminated” pixels the surface densities can be under/overestimated by up to three orders of magnitude. In light of this, we recommend to treat the pixel-based results from this technique with caution in regions with active star formation. In regions of high background typical in the inner Galactic plane, we are not able to recover reliable surface density maps of individual synthetic regions, since low-mass regions are lost in the far-infrared background. When measuring the total gas mass of regions in moderate background, we find that modified blackbody fitting works well (absolute error: + 9%; -13%) up to 10 kpc distance (errors increase with distance). Commonly, the initial images are convolved to the largest common beam-size, which smears contaminated pixels over large areas. The resulting information loss makes this commonly used technique less verifiable as now χ 2 values cannot be used as a quality indicator of a fitted pixel. Our control measurements of the total gas mass (without the step of convolution to the largest common beam size) produce similar results (absolute error: +20%; -7%) while having much lower median errors especially for the high-mass stellar feedback phase. In upcoming papers (Paper III; Paper IV) of this series we test the reliability of measured star formation rate with direct and indirect techniques.

  8. Monitoring land surface albedo and vegetation dynamics using high spatial and temporal resolution synthetic time series from Landsat and the MODIS BRDF/NBAR/albedo product (United States)

    Wang, Zhuosen; Schaaf, Crystal B.; Sun, Qingsong; Kim, JiHyun; Erb, Angela M.; Gao, Feng; Román, Miguel O.; Yang, Yun; Petroy, Shelley; Taylor, Jeffrey R.; Masek, Jeffrey G.; Morisette, Jeffrey T.; Zhang, Xiaoyang; Papuga, Shirley A.


    Seasonal vegetation phenology can significantly alter surface albedo which in turn affects the global energy balance and the albedo warming/cooling feedbacks that impact climate change. To monitor and quantify the surface dynamics of heterogeneous landscapes, high temporal and spatial resolution synthetic time series of albedo and the enhanced vegetation index (EVI) were generated from the 500 m Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) operational Collection V006 daily BRDF/NBAR/albedo products and 30 m Landsat 5 albedo and near-nadir reflectance data through the use of the Spatial and Temporal Adaptive Reflectance Fusion Model (STARFM). The traditional Landsat Albedo (Shuai et al., 2011) makes use of the MODIS BRDF/Albedo products (MCD43) by assigning appropriate BRDFs from coincident MODIS products to each Landsat image to generate a 30 m Landsat albedo product for that acquisition date. The available cloud free Landsat 5 albedos (due to clouds, generated every 16 days at best) were used in conjunction with the daily MODIS albedos to determine the appropriate 30 m albedos for the intervening daily time steps in this study. These enhanced daily 30 m spatial resolution synthetic time series were then used to track albedo and vegetation phenology dynamics over three Ameriflux tower sites (Harvard Forest in 2007, Santa Rita in 2011 and Walker Branch in 2005). These Ameriflux sites were chosen as they are all quite nearby new towers coming on line for the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON), and thus represent locations which will be served by spatially paired albedo measures in the near future. The availability of data from the NEON towers will greatly expand the sources of tower albedometer data available for evaluation of satellite products. At these three Ameriflux tower sites the synthetic time series of broadband shortwave albedos were evaluated using the tower albedo measurements with a Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) less than 0.013 and a


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sh. B. Saaya


    Full Text Available At present, vascular surgery using small diameter synthetic grafts is associated with a higher incidence of complications (thrombosis, restenosis, intimal hyperplasia than in operations using autologous vessels. However, the occurrence of concomitant pathology, reoperations and multifocal vascular disease limit the use of autologous vein and arteries. The important factor providing a long-term patency is the presence of vascular cells, which produce biologically active substance and provide mechanical properties. Aim. Selection of the optimal scaffold for creating cell-seeded tissue-engineering vessels. Materials and methods. Endothelial (EC and smooth muscle cells (SMC derived from human myocardium were seeded on different surfaces: decellularized homoarteriа, хenopericardium, polytetrafl uoroethylene (PTFE, polyethylene terephthalate (PET, polycaprolactone (PCL and polylactide-co-glycolide (PLGA. Results. Synthetic biodegradable materials polycaprolactone and polylactide-co-glycolide provide cell adhesion. The cells cultured on the polycaprolactone and polylactide-coglycolide scaffolds retain their functional properties: viability and proliferative properties, maintain specifi c endothelial antigens and synthesis of extracellular matrix. Conclusion. Synthetic biodegradable polycaprolactone and polylactide-co-glycolide electrospun scaffolds can be used for creation of cell-fi lled vascular prostheses. 

  10. Genetic diversity and natural selection of Plasmodium knowlesi merozoite surface protein 1 paralog gene in Malaysia. (United States)

    Ahmed, Md Atique; Fauzi, Muh; Han, Eun-Taek


    Human infections due to the monkey malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi is on the rise in most Southeast Asian countries specifically Malaysia. The C-terminal 19 kDa domain of PvMSP1P is a potential vaccine candidate, however, no study has been conducted in the orthologous gene of P. knowlesi. This study investigates level of polymorphisms, haplotypes and natural selection of full-length pkmsp1p in clinical samples from Malaysia. A total of 36 full-length pkmsp1p sequences along with the reference H-strain and 40 C-terminal pkmsp1p sequences from clinical isolates of Malaysia were downloaded from published genomes. Genetic diversity, polymorphism, haplotype and natural selection were determined using DnaSP 5.10 and MEGA 5.0 software. Genealogical relationships were determined using haplotype network tree in NETWORK software v5.0. Population genetic differentiation index (F ST ) and population structure of parasite was determined using Arlequin v3.5 and STRUCTURE v2.3.4 software. Comparison of 36 full-length pkmsp1p sequences along with the H-strain identified 339 SNPs (175 non-synonymous and 164 synonymous substitutions). The nucleotide diversity across the full-length gene was low compared to its ortholog pvmsp1p. The nucleotide diversity was higher toward the N-terminal domains (pkmsp1p-83 and 30) compared to the C-terminal domains (pkmsp1p-38, 33 and 19). Phylogenetic analysis of full-length genes identified 2 distinct clusters of P. knowlesi from Malaysian Borneo. The 40 pkmsp1p-19 sequences showed low polymorphisms with 16 polymorphisms leading to 18 haplotypes. In total there were 10 synonymous and 6 non-synonymous substitutions and 12 cysteine residues were intact within the two EGF domains. Evidence of strong purifying selection was observed within the full-length sequences as well in all the domains. Shared haplotypes of 40 pkmsp1p-19 were identified within Malaysian Borneo haplotypes. This study is the first to report on the genetic diversity and natural selection of pkmsp1p. A low level of genetic diversity and strong evidence of negative selection was detected and observed in all the domains of pkmsp1p of P. knowlesi indicating functional constrains. Shared haplotypes were identified within pkmsp1p-19 highlighting further evaluation using larger number of clinical samples from Malaysia.

  11. Genetic diversity of merozoite surface protein-2 in Plasmodium falciparum isolates from Aceh province, Indonesia (United States)

    Jamil, K. F.; Supargiyono, S.; Syafruddin, D.; Pratama, N.; Silvy, S.


    Estimated 3.3 million Indonesian population were infected with malaria. However, extensive genetic polymorphism of the field isolates MSP-2 of P. falciparum represents a major obstacle for the development of malaria treatment. The aim of this study to investigate the genetic diversity of MSP-2 genotype in field isolates of P. falciparum collected in Aceh Province. A total of 90 patients enrolled in this study who were selected from positive malaria from eleven district Hospitals in Aceh from 2013-2015. Data was collected by anamnesis, complete physical examination and laboratory tests for MSP-2. All protocol to diagnose malaria assigned following the WHO 2010 guideline. All samples were stored in Eijkman Biology Molecular Institute, Jakarta.Among 90 samples were 57.7% male and 42.3% female with the most cases ages between 21-30 years old. Allele typing analysis displayed the polymorphic nature of P. falciparum. The MSP-2 have two alleles, 62.2% (56/90) for FC27 type and 58.9% (53/90) for 3D7 type and 21.2% (19/90) for mixed FC27 and 3D7 infection were identified. Diverse allele types from Aceh Province was identified in MSP-2 P. falciparum patients; there is the almost similar number of patients infected with both allele. A moderate level of the mixed allele was also observed.

  12. The genetic polymorphism of merozoite surface protein-1 in Plasmodium falciparum isolates from Aceh province, Indonesia (United States)

    Jamil, K. F.; Supargiyono, S.; Syafruddin, D.; Pratama, N.; Silvy, S.


    An estimated of 3.3 million Indonesian population were infected with malaria. However, extensive genetic polymorphism of the field isolates msp-1 of P. falciparum represents a major obstacle for the development of malaria treatment. The aim of this study was to investigate the genetic diversity of msp-1 genotype in field isolates of P. falciparum collected in Aceh Province. A total of 90 patients with malaria (+) were selected from eleven district hospitals in Aceh from 2013-2015. Data were collected by anamnesis, complete physical examination and laboratory tests for msp-1. All protocols to diagnose malaria followed the WHO 2010 guideline. All samples were stored in Eijkman Biology Molecular Institute, Jakarta. Among 90 samples, 57.7% were male, and 42.3% were female with the most cases found between 21-30 years old. From the allele typing analysis of P. falciparum from Aceh; K1, MAD20, and RO33 allele types were identified. MAD20 type was the highest allele found in this study (57.9%). It was found in single and mixed infection. A moderate level of the mixed allele was also observed.

  13. Synthetic Cannabinoids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aslihan Okan Ibiloglu


    Full Text Available Synthetic cannabinoids which is a subgroup of cannabinoids are commonly used for recreational drug use throughout the whole world. Although both marijuana and synthetic cannabinoids stimulate the same receptors, cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1 and cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2, studies have shown that synthetic cannabinoids are much more potent than marijuana. The longer use of synthetic cannabinoids can cause severe physical and psychological symptoms that might even result in death, similar to many known illicit drugs. Main treatment options mostly involve symptom management and supportive care. The aim of this article is to discuss clinical and pharmacological properties of the increasingly used synthetic cannabinoids. [Psikiyatride Guncel Yaklasimlar - Current Approaches in Psychiatry 2017; 9(3.000: 317-328

  14. Sarcocyst Development in Raccoons (Procyon lotor) Inoculated with Different Strains of Sarcocystis neurona Culture-Derived Merozoites. (United States)

    Dryburgh, E L; Marsh, A E; Dubey, J P; Howe, D K; Reed, S M; Bolten, K E; Pei, W; Saville, W J A


    Sarcocystis neurona is considered the major etiologic agent of equine protozoal myeloencephalitis (EPM), a neurological disease in horses. Raccoon ( Procyon lotor ) is considered the most important intermediate host in the life cycle of S. neurona in the United States; S. neurona sarcocysts do mature in raccoon muscles, and raccoons also develop clinical signs simulating EPM. The focus of this study was to determine if sarcocysts would develop in raccoons experimentally inoculated with different host-derived strains of in vitro-cultivated S. neurona merozoites. Four raccoons were inoculated with strains derived from a raccoon, a sea otter, a cat, and a horse. Raccoon tissues were fed to laboratory-raised opossums ( Didelphis virginiana ), the definitive host of S. neurona . Intestinal scraping revealed sporocysts in opossums who received muscle tissue from raccoons inoculated with the raccoon-derived or the sea otter-derived isolates. These results demonstrate that sarcocysts can mature in raccoons inoculated with in vitro-derived S. neurona merozoites. In contrast, the horse and cat-derived isolates did not produce microscopically or biologically detected sarcocysts. Immunoblot analysis revealed both antigenic and antibody differences when testing the inoculated raccoons. Immunohistochemical staining indicated differences in staining between the merozoite and sarcocyst stages. The successful infections achieved in this study indicates that the life cycle can be manipulated in the laboratory without affecting subsequent stage development, thereby allowing further purification of strains and artificial maintenance of the life cycle.

  15. Enhancing blockade of Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte invasion: assessing combinations of antibodies against PfRH5 and other merozoite antigens.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew R Williams

    Full Text Available No vaccine has yet proven effective against the blood-stages of Plasmodium falciparum, which cause the symptoms and severe manifestations of malaria. We recently found that PfRH5, a P. falciparum-specific protein expressed in merozoites, is efficiently targeted by broadly-neutralizing, vaccine-induced antibodies. Here we show that antibodies against PfRH5 efficiently inhibit the in vitro growth of short-term-adapted parasite isolates from Cambodia, and that the EC(50 values of antigen-specific antibodies against PfRH5 are lower than those against PfAMA1. Since antibody responses elicited by multiple antigens are speculated to improve the efficacy of blood-stage vaccines, we conducted detailed assessments of parasite growth inhibition by antibodies against PfRH5 in combination with antibodies against seven other merozoite antigens. We found that antibodies against PfRH5 act synergistically with antibodies against certain other merozoite antigens, most notably with antibodies against other erythrocyte-binding antigens such as PfRH4, to inhibit the growth of a homologous P. falciparum clone. A combination of antibodies against PfRH4 and basigin, the erythrocyte receptor for PfRH5, also potently inhibited parasite growth. This methodology provides the first quantitative evidence that polyclonal vaccine-induced antibodies can act synergistically against P. falciparum antigens and should help to guide the rational development of future multi-antigen vaccines.

  16. Safety and immunogenicity of the malaria vaccine candidate MSP3 long synthetic peptide in 12-24 months-old Burkinabe children.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sirima, S.B.; Tiono, A.B.; Diarra, A.; Ouedraogo, A.L.; Yaro, J.B.; Ouedraogo, E.; Gansane, A.; Bougouma, E.C.; Konate, A.T.; Kabore, Y.; Traore, A.; Roma, C.; Soulama, I.; Luty, A.J.F.; Cousens, S.; Nebie, I.


    BACKGROUND: A Phase Ia trial in European volunteers of the candidate vaccine merozoite surface protein 3 (MSP3), a Plasmodium falciparum blood stage membrane, showed that it induces biologically active antibodies able to achieve parasite killing in vitro, while a phase Ib trial in semi-immune adult

  17. Degradation patterns of natural and synthetic textiles on a soil surface during summer and winter seasons studied using ATR-FTIR spectroscopy (United States)

    Ueland, Maiken; Howes, Johanna M.; Forbes, Shari L.; Stuart, Barbara H.


    Textiles are a valuable source of forensic evidence and the nature and condition of textiles collected from a crime scene can assist investigators in determining the nature of the death and aid in the identification of the victim. Until now, much of the knowledge of textile degradation in forensic contexts has been based on the visual inspection of material collected from soil environments. The purpose of the current study was to investigate the potential of a more quantitative approach to the understanding of forensic textile degradation through the application of infrared spectroscopy. Degradation patterns of natural and synthetic textile materials as they were subjected to a natural outdoor environment in Australia were investigated. Cotton, polyester and polyester - cotton blend textiles were placed on a soil surface during the summer and winter seasons and were analysed over periods 1 and 1.5 years, respectively, and examined using attenuated total reflectance (ATR) spectroscopy. Statistical analysis of the spectral data obtained for the cotton material correlated with visual degradation and a difference in the onset of degradation between the summer and winter season was revealed. The synthetic material did not show any signs of degradation either visually or statistically throughout the experimental period and highlighted the importance of material type in terms of preservation. The cotton section from the polyester - cotton blend samples was found to behave in a similar manner to that of the 100% cotton samples, however principal component analysis (PCA) demonstrated that the degradation patterns were less distinct in both the summer and winter trial for the blend samples. These findings indicated that the presence of the synthetic material may have inhibited the degradation of the natural material. The use of statistics to analyse the spectral data obtained for textiles of forensic interest provides a better foundation for the interpretation of the data

  18. Quantifying the Uncertainty in High Spatial and Temporal Resolution Synthetic Land Surface Reflectance at Pixel Level Using Ground-Based Measurements (United States)

    Kong, J.; Ryu, Y.


    Algorithms for fusing high temporal frequency and high spatial resolution satellite images are widely used to develop dense time-series land surface observations. While many studies have revealed that the synthesized frequent high spatial resolution images could be successfully applied in vegetation mapping and monitoring, validation and correction of fused images have not been focused than its importance. To evaluate the precision of fused image in pixel level, in-situ reflectance measurements which could account for the pixel-level heterogeneity are necessary. In this study, the synthetic images of land surface reflectance were predicted by the coarse high-frequency images acquired from MODIS and high spatial resolution images from Landsat-8 OLI using the Flexible Spatiotemporal Data Fusion (FSDAF). Ground-based reflectance was measured by JAZ Spectrometer (Ocean Optics, Dunedin, FL, USA) on rice paddy during five main growth stages in Cheorwon-gun, Republic of Korea, where the landscape heterogeneity changes through the growing season. After analyzing the spatial heterogeneity and seasonal variation of land surface reflectance based on the ground measurements, the uncertainties of the fused images were quantified at pixel level. Finally, this relationship was applied to correct the fused reflectance images and build the seasonal time series of rice paddy surface reflectance. This dataset could be significant for rice planting area extraction, phenological stages detection, and variables estimation.

  19. Sarcocystis neurona manipulation using culture-derived merozoites for bradyzoite and sporocyst production. (United States)

    Chaney, Sarah B; Marsh, Antoinette E; Lewis, Stephanie; Carman, Michelle; Howe, Daniel K; Saville, William J; Reed, Stephen M


    Equine protozoal myeloencephalitis (EPM) remains a significant central nervous system disease of horses in the American continents. Sarcocystis neurona is considered the primary causative agent and its intermediate life stages are carried by a wide host-range including raccoons (Procyon lotor) in North America. S. neurona sarcocysts mature in raccoon skeletal muscle and can produce central nervous system disease in raccoons, mirroring the clinical presentation in horses. The study aimed to develop laboratory tools whereby the life cycle and various life stages of S. neurona could be better studied and manipulated using in vitro and in vivo systems and compare the biology of two independent isolates. This study utilized culture-derived parasites from S. neurona strains derived from a raccoon or from a horse to initiate raccoon infections. Raccoon tissues, including fresh and cryopreserved tissues, were used to establish opossum (Didelphis virginiana) infections, which then shed sporocyts with retained biological activity to cause encephalitis in mice. These results demonstrate that sarcocysts can be generated using in vitro-derived S. neurona merozoites, including an isolate originally derived from a naturally infected horse with clinical EPM. This study indicates the life cycle can be significantly manipulated in the laboratory without affecting subsequent stage development, allowing further purification of strains and artificial maintenance of the life cycle. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  20. Merozoite proteins from Babesia sp. BQ1 (Lintan) as potential antigens for serodiagnosis by ELISA. (United States)

    Guan, G Q; Chauvin, A; Rogniaux, H; Luo, J X; Yin, H; Moreau, E


    Babesia sp. BQ1 (Lintan) is a Babesia isolated from sheep infested with Haemaphysalis qinghaiensis in China, and is closely related to B. motasi based on the 18S rRNA gene sequence. In the present study, an ELISA was developed with merozoite antigens of Babesia sp. BQ1 (Lintan) (BQMA) purified from in vitro culture. When the positive threshold was chosen as 30% of the antibodies rate, evaluated with 198 negative sera, the specificity was 95.5%. Except for Babesia sp. Tianzhu, there was no cross-reaction between BQMA and positive sera from Babesia sp. BQ1 (Ningxian)-, Babesia sp. Hebei-, Babesia sp. Xinjiang-, Theileria luwenshuni-, T. uilenbergi-, or Anaplasma ovis-infected sheep, which are the dominant haemoparasites of small ruminants in China. Specific antibodies against Babesia sp. BQ1 (Lintan) were produced 1 or 2 weeks post-infection and a high level of antibodies persisted for more than 8 months in experimentally infected sheep. This ELISA was tested on 974 sera collected from field-grazing sheep in 3 counties of Gansu province, northwestern China to evaluate the seroprevalence of Babesia sp. BQ1 (Lintan) infection and the average positive rate was 66.84%. The feasibility of increasing the specificity of this BQMA-based ELISA, by using some BQMA antigens for serodiagnosis is discussed.

  1. In vivo evaluation of biofunctionalized implant surfaces with a synthetic peptide (P-15) and its impact on osseointegration. A preclinical animal study. (United States)

    Schmitt, Christian M; Koepple, Markus; Moest, Tobias; Neumann, Konrad; Weisel, Tamara; Schlegel, Karl Andreas


    The overall aim of the study was to investigate a biofunctionalized implant surface with electrochemically deposition of hydroxyapatite and the synthetic peptide (P-15) and its effect on osseointegration. Three modified implant types of ANKYLOS ® C/X implants were used; (1) machined implants used as negative control (M, n = 20), (2) implants with the FRIADENT ® plus surface (grit blasted and acid-etched) used as positive control (P, n = 20), and (3) implants with a biomimetic surface consisting of hydroxyapatite and the synthetic 15 aminoacids containing peptide P-15 (BP, n = 40). The implants were randomly inserted in the mandibles of 10 beagle dogs following 4 months after tooth extraction (P1-P4). Three animals were sacrificed 2 and 7 days after implant insertion, respectively, and four animals were sacrificed 6 months post implant insertion. Bone-to-implant contacts (BICs) were analyzed via histomorphometrical analyses at five different region of interests (ROIs); two at the middle part on either side of the implant (ROI 1/4), two at the apical part of the implant at each side (ROI 2/3), and one at the tip of the implant (ROI 5). All implant surfaces showed a high level of osseointegration and osteoconductivity. The cumulative implant survival rate (CSR) was 93.8%, 100% in the M, 85% in the P, and 95% in the BP group. No statistical difference in BICs at ROI 1/4, 2/3, and 5 could be shown between implant types following 2 and 7 days of healing. BIC values increased in all groups over time. After 6 months of healing the BP group showed superiority in BIC in ROI 2/3 (73.2 ± 15.6%) compared to the P (48.3 ± 10.6%) and M group (66.3 ± 30.2%) with a significant difference between BP and P (P = 0.002). It is hypothesized, that the surface biofunctionalization improves peri-implant bone formation and remodeling, leading to an increased bone-to implant contact. However, within the limitations of the study set-up no benefit in the early phase of

  2. Time-series analysis of surface deformation at Brady Hot Springs geothermal field (Nevada) using interferometric synthetic aperture radar

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ali, S. T. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Akerley, J. [Ormat Technologies Inc., Reno, NV (United States); Baluyut, E. C. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Cardiff, M. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Davatzes, N. C. [Temple Univ., Philadelphia, PA (United States). Dept. of Earth and Environmental Science; Feigl, K. L. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Foxall, W. [Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States); Fratta, D. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Mellors, R. J. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Spielman, P. [Ormat Technologies Inc., Reno, NV (United States); Wang, H. F. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States); Zemach, E. [Ormat Technologies Inc., Reno, NV (United States)


    We analyze interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) data acquired between 2004 and 2014, by the ERS-2, Envisat, ALOS and TerraSAR-X/TanDEM-X satellite missions to measure and characterize time-dependent deformation at the Brady Hot Springs geothermal field in western Nevada due to extraction of fluids. The long axis of the ~4 km by ~1.5 km elliptical subsiding area coincides with the strike of the dominant normal fault system at Brady. Within this bowl of subsidence, the interference pattern shows several smaller features with length scales of the order of ~1 km. This signature occurs consistently in all of the well-correlated interferometric pairs spanning several months. Results from inverse modeling suggest that the deformation is a result of volumetric contraction in shallow units, no deeper than 600 m, likely associated with damaged regions where fault segments mechanically interact. Such damaged zones are expected to extend downward along steeply dipping fault planes, providing a high permeability conduit to the production wells. Using time series analysis, we test the hypothesis that geothermal production drives the observed deformation. We find a good correlation between the observed deformation rate and the rate of production in the shallow wells. We also explore mechanisms that could potentially cause the observed deformation, including thermal contraction of rock, decline in pore pressure and dissolution of minerals over time.

  3. Coating a polystyrene well-plate surface with synthetic hematite, goethite and aluminium hydroxide for cell mineral adhesion studies in a controlled environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pouran, Hamid M.; Banwart, Steve A.; Romero-Gonzalez, Maria


    Highlights: • Hematite, goethite and aluminium hydroxide were synthesized and characterize. • Polystyrene cell culture well plates were coated with the synthetic metal oxides. • The coated well plates proven to be completely identical to the synthetic minerals. • The coating method is compatible with what occurs in aquifers with metal oxides. • This method provides a key experimental part for cell mineral adhesion studies. - Abstract: Iron and aluminium oxides are available in many climatic regions and play a vital role in many environmental processes, including the interactions of microorganisms in contaminated soils and groundwater with their ambient environment. Indigenous microorganisms in contaminated environments often have the ability to degrade or transform those contaminants, a concept that supports an in situ remediation approach and uses natural microbial populations in order to bio-remediate polluted sites. These metal oxides have a relatively high pH-dependent surface charge, which makes them good candidates for studying mineral–bacterial adhesion. Given the importance of understanding the reactions that occur at metal oxide and bacterial cell interfaces and to investigate this phenomenon further under well-characterized conditions, some of the most common iron and aluminium oxides; hematite, goethite and aluminium hydroxide, were synthesized and characterized and a coating method was developed to coat polystyrene well-plates as a surface exposable to bacterial adhesion with these minerals (non-treated polystyrene-12 well-plates which are used for cell cultures). The coating process was designed in a way that resembles naturally coated surfaces in aquifers. Hematite, Fe 2 O 3 , was synthesized from acidic FeCl 3 solution, while goethite, FeOOH, and aluminium hydroxide, Al(OH) 3 , were prepared from an alkaline solution of Fe(NO 3 ) 3 and Al(NO 3 ) 3 . They were further characterized using X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared

  4. Application of Raman spectroscopy and surface-enhanced Raman scattering to the analysis of synthetic dyes found in ballpoint pen inks. (United States)

    Geiman, Irina; Leona, Marco; Lombardi, John R


    The applicability of Raman spectroscopy and surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) to the analysis of synthetic dyes commonly found in ballpoint inks was investigated in a comparative study. Spectra of 10 dyes were obtained using a dispersive system (633 nm, 785 nm lasers) and a Fourier transform system (1064 nm laser) under different analytical conditions (e.g., powdered pigments, solutions, thin layer chromatography [TLC] spots). While high fluorescence background and poor spectral quality often characterized the normal Raman spectra of the dyes studied, SERS was found to be generally helpful. Additionally, dye standards and a single ballpoint ink were developed on a TLC plate following a typical ink analysis procedure. SERS spectra were successfully collected directly from the TLC plate, thus demonstrating a possible forensic application for the technique.

  5. Synthetic environments (United States)

    Lukes, George E.; Cain, Joel M.


    The Advanced Distributed Simulation (ADS) Synthetic Environments Program seeks to create robust virtual worlds from operational terrain and environmental data sources of sufficient fidelity and currency to interact with the real world. While some applications can be met by direct exploitation of standard digital terrain data, more demanding applications -- particularly those support operations 'close to the ground' -- are well-served by emerging capabilities for 'value-adding' by the user working with controlled imagery. For users to rigorously refine and exploit controlled imagery within functionally different workstations they must have a shared framework to allow interoperability within and between these environments in terms of passing image and object coordinates and other information using a variety of validated sensor models. The Synthetic Environments Program is now being expanded to address rapid construction of virtual worlds with research initiatives in digital mapping, softcopy workstations, and cartographic image understanding. The Synthetic Environments Program is also participating in a joint initiative for a sensor model applications programer's interface (API) to ensure that a common controlled imagery exploitation framework is available to all researchers, developers and users. This presentation provides an introduction to ADS and the associated requirements for synthetic environments to support synthetic theaters of war. It provides a technical rationale for exploring applications of image understanding technology to automated cartography in support of ADS and related programs benefitting from automated analysis of mapping, earth resources and reconnaissance imagery. And it provides an overview and status of the joint initiative for a sensor model API.

  6. Synthetic Rutile

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burastero, J.


    This work is about the laboratory scale investigation of the conditions in the rutile synthetic production from one me nita in Aguas Dulces reservoir. The iron mineral is chlorinated and volatilized selectively leaving a residue enriched in titanium dioxide which can be used as a substitute of rutile mineral

  7. Sorption of phenol from synthetic aqueous solution by activated saw dust: Optimizing parameters with response surface methodology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Omprakash Sahu


    Full Text Available Organic pollutants have an adverse effect on the neighboring environment. Industrial activates are the major sources of different organic pollutants. These primary pollutants react with surrounding and forms secondary pollutant, which persists for a long time. The present investigation has been carried out on the surface of activated sawdust for phenol eliminations. The process parameters initial concentration, contact time, adsorbent dose and pH were optimized by the response surface methodology (RSM. The numerical optimization of sawdust (SD, initial concentration 10 mg/l, contact time 1.5 h, adsorbent dose 4 g and pH 2, the optimum response result was 78.3% adsorption. Analysis of variance (ANOVA was used to judge the adequacy of the central composite design and quadratic model found to be suitable. The coefficient of determination values was found to be maximum Adj R2 0.7223, and Pre R2 0.5739 and significant regression at 95% confidence level values.

  8. Expression of a type B RIFIN in Plasmodium falciparum merozoites and gametes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mwakalinga Steven B


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The ability of Plasmodium falciparum to undergo antigenic variation, by switching expression among protein variants encoded by multigene families, such as var, rif and stevor, is key to the survival of this parasite in the human host. The RIFIN protein family can be divided into A and B types based on the presence or absence of a 25 amino acid motif in the semi-conserved domain. A particular type B RIFIN, PF13_0006, has previously been shown to be strongly transcribed in the asexual and sexual stages of P. falciparum in vitro. Methods Antibodies to recombinant PF13_0006 RIFIN were used in immunofluorescence and confocal imaging of 3D7 parasites throughout the asexual reproduction and sexual development to examine the expression of PF13_0006. Furthermore, reactivity to recombinant PF13_0006 was measured in plasma samples collected from individuals from both East and West African endemic areas. Results The PF13_0006 RIFIN variant appeared expressed by both released merozoites and gametes after emergence. 7.4% and 12.1% of individuals from East and West African endemic areas, respectively, carry plasma antibodies that recognize recombinant PF13_0006, where the antibody responses were more common among older children. Conclusions The stage specificity of PF13_0006 suggests that the diversity of RIFIN variants has evolved to provide multiple specialized functions in different stages of the parasite life cycle. These data also suggest that RIFIN variants antigenically similar to PF13_0006 occur in African parasite populations.

  9. Comparative transcriptome analysis of second- and third-generation merozoites of Eimeria necatrix. (United States)

    Su, Shijie; Hou, Zhaofeng; Liu, Dandan; Jia, Chuanli; Wang, Lele; Xu, Jinjun; Tao, Jianping


    Eimeria is a common genus of apicomplexan parasites that infect diverse vertebrates, most notably poultry, causing serious disease and economic losses. Eimeria species have complex life-cycles consisting of three developmental stages. However, the molecular basis of the Eimeria reproductive mode switch remains an enigma. Total RNA extracted from second- (MZ-2) and third-generation merozoites (MZ-3) of Eimeria necatrix was subjected to transcriptome analysis using RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) followed by qRT-PCR validation. A total of 6977 and 6901 unigenes were obtained from MZ-2 and MZ-3, respectively. Approximately 2053 genes were differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between MZ-2 and MZ-3. Compared with MZ-2, 837 genes were upregulated and 1216 genes were downregulated in MZ-3. Approximately 95 genes in MZ-2 and 48 genes in MZ-3 were further identified to have stage-specific expression. Gene ontology category and KEGG analysis suggested that 216 upregulated genes in MZ-2 were annotated by 70 GO assignments, 242 upregulated genes were associated with 188 signal pathways, while 321 upregulated genes in MZ-3 were annotated by 56 GO assignments, 322 upregulated genes were associated with 168 signal pathways. The molecular functions of upregulated genes in MZ-2 were mainly enriched for protein degradation and amino acid metabolism. The molecular functions of upregulated genes in MZ-3 were mainly enriched for transcriptional activity, cell proliferation and cell differentiation. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first RNA-seq data study of the MZ-2 and MZ-3 stages of E. necatrix; it demonstrates a high number of differentially expressed genes between the MZ-2 and MZ-3 of E. necatrix. This study forms a basis for deciphering the molecular mechanisms underlying the shift from the second to third generation schizogony in Eimeria. It also provides valuable resources for future studies on Eimeria, and provides insight into the understanding of reproductive mode

  10. Surface Acoustic Wave Nebulisation Mass Spectrometry for the Fast and Highly Sensitive Characterisation of Synthetic Dyes in Textile Samples (United States)

    Astefanei, Alina; van Bommel, Maarten; Corthals, Garry L.


    Surface acoustic wave nebulisation (SAWN) mass spectrometry (MS) is a method to generate gaseous ions compatible with direct MS of minute samples at femtomole sensitivity. To perform SAWN, acoustic waves are propagated through a LiNbO3 sampling chip, and are conducted to the liquid sample, which ultimately leads to the generation of a fine mist containing droplets of nanometre to micrometre diameter. Through fission and evaporation, the droplets undergo a phase change from liquid to gaseous analyte ions in a non-destructive manner. We have developed SAWN technology for the characterisation of organic colourants in textiles. It generates electrospray-ionisation-like ions in a non-destructive manner during ionisation, as can be observed by the unmodified chemical structure. The sample size is decreased by tenfold to 1000-fold when compared with currently used liquid chromatography-MS methods, with equal or better sensitivity. This work underscores SAWN-MS as an ideal tool for molecular analysis of art objects as it is non-destructive, is rapid, involves minimally invasive sampling and is more sensitive than current MS-based methods. [Figure not available: see fulltext.

  11. Synthetic peptides derived from salivary proteins and the control of surface charge densities of dental surfaces improve the inhibition of dental calculus formation. (United States)

    Grohe, Bernd


    Peptides descended from the salivary proteins statherin and histatin were recently identified in saliva and the acquired enamel pellicle (AEP), a proteomic layer coated on enamel. In particular, the statherin phosphopeptide DpSpSEEKFLR (DSS) was found to adsorb to enamel-like hydroxyapatite and inhibit plaque-related crystal formation. To determine the mechanism of these processes, we studied peptide-crystal interactions based on the sequences DSS and RKFHEKHHSHRGYR (RKF). The latter is a basic histatin sequence showing antimicrobial effects. To initiate crystallization we used calcium oxalate monohydrate (COM), a rather secondary phase in the oral environment, however highly amenable to experimental analyses of nucleation and growth processes. Using electron microscopy we found that the peptides DSS, DSS-RKF and DSS-DSS all inhibit crystal formation; with DSS-DSS showing the strongest effects while RKF showed no effect. In addition, using either enamel-like or mica substrates, we found that the ratio of the substrate's surface charge densities was directly correlated with the ratio of COM nucleation rates on theses surfaces. The findings suggest that mineralization processes on enamel/AEP-films are controllable by the degree of peptide phosphorylation/acidity and the level of the enamel surface charge density. Both parameters can, when well adjusted, help to overcome periodontal disease and dental calculus formation. In addition, the presence of antimicrobial RKF will reduce the buildup of bacterial plaque. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Modulation of ocular surface glycocalyx barrier function by a galectin-3 N-terminal deletion mutant and membrane-anchored synthetic glycopolymers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jerome Mauris

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Interaction of transmembrane mucins with the multivalent carbohydrate-binding protein galectin-3 is critical to maintaining the integrity of the ocular surface epithelial glycocalyx. This study aimed to determine whether disruption of galectin-3 multimerization and insertion of synthetic glycopolymers in the plasma membrane could be used to modulate glycocalyx barrier function in corneal epithelial cells. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Abrogation of galectin-3 biosynthesis in multilayered cultures of human corneal epithelial cells using siRNA, and in galectin-3 null mice, resulted in significant loss of corneal barrier function, as indicated by increased permeability to the rose bengal diagnostic dye. Addition of β-lactose, a competitive carbohydrate inhibitor of galectin-3 binding activity, to the cell culture system, transiently disrupted barrier function. In these experiments, treatment with a dominant negative inhibitor of galectin-3 polymerization lacking the N-terminal domain, but not full-length galectin-3, prevented the recovery of barrier function to basal levels. As determined by fluorescence microscopy, both cellobiose- and lactose-containing glycopolymers incorporated into apical membranes of corneal epithelial cells, independently of the chain length distribution of the densely glycosylated, polymeric backbones. Membrane incorporation of cellobiose glycopolymers impaired barrier function in corneal epithelial cells, contrary to their lactose-containing counterparts, which bound to galectin-3 in pull-down assays. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These results indicate that galectin-3 multimerization and surface recognition of lactosyl residues is required to maintain glycocalyx barrier function at the ocular surface. Transient modification of galectin-3 binding could be therapeutically used to enhance the efficiency of topical drug delivery.

  13. Optimization of Catalytic Ozonation Process for Formaldehyde Mineralization from Synthetic Wastewater by Fe/MgO Nanoparticles Synthesis by Sol-Gel Method by Response Surface Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ghorban Asgari


    Full Text Available Background: Design experiment stages of formalin mineralization process by center composition design (CCD cause ease of work, reducing the number of samples, increasing the accuracy of optimized conditions and the interaction parameters determined during the process. The aim of this study was optimization of catalytic ozonation process for formaldehyde mineralization from synthetic wastewater by Fe/MgO nanoparticles synthesis by sol-gel method by response surface model. Methods: This experimental study was conducted in a semi-batch reactor, using a RSM by taking 3 factors in the final stage of pH (7-9, reaction time (10-20 min and catalyst dose (1.1-1.3 g/L was investigated. Synthesis of nanoparticles was done by sol-gel method. The results were analyzed by Design Expert 7.0.1 software. Results: The results showed that the process was dependent on the parameters studied and changing each parameter, affected the process efficiency and other parameters. The optimum conditions predicted for the process was 86.51% of mineralization efficiency. Optimum condition included pH=8.82, reaction time of 20 minute and catalyst dose of 1.3 g/L. The correlation coefficient for the process was determined 0.91. Conclusion: Using a statistical model could reduce the number of experiments, the accuracy and the prediction process. The catalytic ozonation process has the ability to remove formaldehyde with high efficiency and the process was environmental friendly.

  14. Analysis of antibodies to newly described Plasmodium falciparum merozoite antigens supports MSPDBL2 as a predicted target of naturally acquired immunity. (United States)

    Tetteh, Kevin K A; Osier, Faith H A; Salanti, Ali; Kamuyu, Gathoni; Drought, Laura; Failly, Marilyne; Martin, Christophe; Marsh, Kevin; Conway, David J


    Prospective studies continue to identify malaria parasite genes with particular patterns of polymorphism which indicate they may be under immune selection, and the encoded proteins require investigation. Sixteen new recombinant protein reagents were designed to characterize three such polymorphic proteins expressed in Plasmodium falciparum schizonts and merozoites: MSPDBL1 (also termed MSP3.4) and MSPDBL2 (MSP3.8), which possess Duffy binding-like (DBL) domains, and SURFIN4.2, encoded by a member of the surface-associated interspersed (surf) multigene family. After testing the antigenicities of these reagents by murine immunization and parasite immunofluorescence, we analyzed naturally acquired antibody responses to the antigens in two cohorts in coastal Kenya in which the parasite was endemic (Chonyi [n = 497] and Ngerenya [n = 461]). As expected, the prevalence and levels of serum antibodies increased with age. We then investigated correlations with subsequent risk of clinical malaria among children <11 years of age during 6 months follow-up surveillance. Antibodies to the polymorphic central region of MSPDBL2 were associated with reduced risk of malaria in both cohorts, with statistical significance remaining for the 3D7 allelic type after adjustment for individuals' ages in years and antibody reactivity to whole-schizont extract (Chonyi, risk ratio, 0.51, and 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.28 to 0.93; Ngerenya, risk ratio, 0.38, and 95% CI, 0.18 to 0.82). For the MSPDBL1 Palo Alto allelic-type antigen, there was a protective association in one cohort (Ngerenya, risk ratio, 0.53, and 95% CI, 0.32 to 0.89), whereas the other antigens showed no protective associations after adjustment. These findings support the prediction that antibodies to the polymorphic region of MSPDBL2 contribute to protective immunity.

  15. Natural - synthetic - artificial!

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Peter E


    The terms "natural," "synthetic" and "artificial" are discussed in relation to synthetic and artificial chromosomes and genomes, synthetic and artificial cells and artificial life.......The terms "natural," "synthetic" and "artificial" are discussed in relation to synthetic and artificial chromosomes and genomes, synthetic and artificial cells and artificial life....

  16. Synthetic Cannabinoids. (United States)

    Mills, Brooke; Yepes, Andres; Nugent, Kenneth


    Synthetic cannabinoids (SCBs), also known under the brand names of "Spice," "K2," "herbal incense," "Cloud 9," "Mojo" and many others, are becoming a large public health concern due not only to their increasing use but also to their unpredictable toxicity and abuse potential. There are many types of SCBs, each having a unique binding affinity for cannabinoid receptors. Although both Δ-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and SCBs stimulate the same receptors, cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) and cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2), studies have shown that SCBs are associated with higher rates of toxicity and hospital admissions than is natural cannabis. This is likely due to SCBs being direct agonists of the cannabinoid receptors, whereas THC is a partial agonist. Furthermore, the different chemical structures of SCBs found in Spice or K2 may interact in unpredictable ways to elicit previously unknown, and the commercial products may have unknown contaminants. The largest group of users is men in their 20s who participate in polydrug use. The most common reported toxicities with SCB use based on studies using Texas Poison Control records are tachycardia, agitation and irritability, drowsiness, hallucinations, delusions, hypertension, nausea, confusion, dizziness, vertigo and chest pain. Acute kidney injury has also been strongly associated with SCB use. Treatment mostly involves symptom management and supportive care. More research is needed to identify which contaminants are typically found in synthetic marijuana and to understand the interactions between different SBCs to better predict adverse health outcomes.

  17. 3D surface flow kinematics derived from airborne UAVSAR interferometric synthetic aperture radar to constrain the physical mechanisms controlling landslide motion (United States)

    Delbridge, B. G.; Burgmann, R.; Fielding, E. J.; Hensley, S.; Schulz, W. H.


    This project focuses on improving our understanding of the physical mechanisms controlling landslide motion by studying the landslide-wide kinematics of the Slumgullion landslide in southwestern Colorado using interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) and GPS. The NASA/JPL UAVSAR airborne repeat-pass SAR interferometry system imaged the Slumgullion landslide from 4 look directions on eight flights in 2011 and 2012. Combining the four look directions allows us to extract the full 3-D velocity field of the surface. Observing the full 3-dimensional flow field allows us to extract the full strain tensor (assuming free surface boundary conditions and incompressible flow) since we have both the spatial resolution to take spatial derivates and full deformation information. COSMO-SkyMed(CSK) high-resolution Spotlight data was also acquired during time intervals overlapping with the UAVSAR one-week pairs, with intervals as short as one day. These observations allow for the quantitative testing of the deformation magnitude and estimated formal errors in the UAVSAR derived deformation field. We also test the agreement of the deformation at 20 GPS monitoring sites concurrently acquired by the USGS. We also utilize the temporal resolution of real-time GPS acquired by the UC Berkeley Active Tectonics Group during a temporary deployment from July 22nd - August 2nd. By combining this data with the kinematic data we hope to elucidate the response of the landslide to environmental changes such as rainfall, snowmelt, and atmospheric pressure, and consequently the mechanisms controlling the dynamics of the landslide system. To constrain the longer temporal dynamics, interferograms made from pairs of CSK images acquired in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 reveal the slide deformation on a longer timescale by allowing us to measure meters of motion and see the average rates over year long intervals using pixel offset tracking of the high-resolution SAR amplitude images. The results of

  18. Synthetic Brainbows

    KAUST Repository

    Wan, Y.


    Brainbow is a genetic engineering technique that randomly colorizes cells. Biological samples processed with this technique and imaged with confocal microscopy have distinctive colors for individual cells. Complex cellular structures can then be easily visualized. However, the complexity of the Brainbow technique limits its applications. In practice, most confocal microscopy scans use different florescence staining with typically at most three distinct cellular structures. These structures are often packed and obscure each other in rendered images making analysis difficult. In this paper, we leverage a process known as GPU framebuffer feedback loops to synthesize Brainbow-like images. In addition, we incorporate ID shuffing and Monte-Carlo sampling into our technique, so that it can be applied to single-channel confocal microscopy data. The synthesized Brainbow images are presented to domain experts with positive feedback. A user survey demonstrates that our synthetic Brainbow technique improves visualizations of volume data with complex structures for biologists.

  19. Synthetic Botany. (United States)

    Boehm, Christian R; Pollak, Bernardo; Purswani, Nuri; Patron, Nicola; Haseloff, Jim


    Plants are attractive platforms for synthetic biology and metabolic engineering. Plants' modular and plastic body plans, capacity for photosynthesis, extensive secondary metabolism, and agronomic systems for large-scale production make them ideal targets for genetic reprogramming. However, efforts in this area have been constrained by slow growth, long life cycles, the requirement for specialized facilities, a paucity of efficient tools for genetic manipulation, and the complexity of multicellularity. There is a need for better experimental and theoretical frameworks to understand the way genetic networks, cellular populations, and tissue-wide physical processes interact at different scales. We highlight new approaches to the DNA-based manipulation of plants and the use of advanced quantitative imaging techniques in simple plant models such as Marchantia polymorpha. These offer the prospects of improved understanding of plant dynamics and new approaches to rational engineering of plant traits. Copyright © 2017 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; all rights reserved.

  20. Natural and Unnatural Oil Layers on the Surface of the Gulf of Mexico Detected and Quantified in Synthetic Aperture RADAR Images with Texture Classifying Neural Network Algorithms (United States)

    MacDonald, I. R.; Garcia-Pineda, O. G.; Morey, S. L.; Huffer, F.


    Effervescent hydrocarbons rise naturally from hydrocarbon seeps in the Gulf of Mexico and reach the ocean surface. This oil forms thin (~0.1 μm) layers that enhance specular reflectivity and have been widely used to quantify the abundance and distribution of natural seeps using synthetic aperture radar (SAR). An analogous process occurred at a vastly greater scale for oil and gas discharged from BP's Macondo well blowout. SAR data allow direct comparison of the areas of the ocean surface covered by oil from natural sources and the discharge. We used a texture classifying neural network algorithm to quantify the areas of naturally occurring oil-covered water in 176 SAR image collections from the Gulf of Mexico obtained between May 1997 and November 2007, prior to the blowout. Separately we also analyzed 36 SAR images collections obtained between 26 April and 30 July, 2010 while the discharged oil was visible in the Gulf of Mexico. For the naturally occurring oil, we removed pollution events and transient oceanographic effects by including only the reflectance anomalies that that recurred in the same locality over multiple images. We measured the area of oil layers in a grid of 10x10 km cells covering the entire Gulf of Mexico. Floating oil layers were observed in only a fraction of the total Gulf area amounting to 1.22x10^5 km^2. In a bootstrap sample of 2000 replications, the combined average area of these layers was 7.80x10^2 km^2 (sd 86.03). For a regional comparison, we divided the Gulf of Mexico into four quadrates along 90° W longitude, and 25° N latitude. The NE quadrate, where the BP discharge occurred, received on average 7.0% of the total natural seepage in the Gulf of Mexico (5.24 x10^2 km^2, sd 21.99); the NW quadrate received on average 68.0% of this total (5.30 x10^2 km^2, sd 69.67). The BP blowout occurred in the NE quadrate of the Gulf of Mexico; discharged oil that reached the surface drifted over a large area north of 25° N. Performing a

  1. Synthetic Astrobiology (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.


    "Are we alone?" is one of the primary questions of astrobiology, and whose answer defines our significance in the universe. Unfortunately, this quest is hindered by the fact that we have only one confirmed example of life, that of earth. While this is enormously helpful in helping to define the minimum envelope for life, it strains credulity to imagine that life, if it arose multiple times, has not taken other routes. To help fill this gap, our lab has begun using synthetic biology - the design and construction of new biological parts and systems and the redesign of existing ones for useful purposes - as an enabling technology. One theme, the "Hell Cell" project, focuses on creating artificial extremophiles in order to push the limits for Earth life, and to understand how difficult it is for life to evolve into extreme niches. In another project, we are re-evolving biotic functions using only the most thermodynamically stable amino acids in order to understand potential capabilities of an early organism with a limited repertoire of amino acids.

  2. Evidence that antibodies against recombinant SnSAG1 of Sarcocystis neurona merozoites are involved in infection and immunity in equine protozoal myeloencephalitis. (United States)

    Ellison, Siobhan; Witonsky, Sharon


    Sarcocystis neurona is the principal etiologic agent of equine protozoal myeloencephalitis (EPM). An immunodominant protein of S. neurona, SnSAG-1, is expressed by the majority of S. neurona merozoites isolated from spinal tissues of horses diagnosed with EPM and may be a candidate for diagnostic tests and prophylaxis for EPM. Five horses were vaccinated with adjuvanted recombinant SnSAG1 (rSnSAG1) and 5 control (sham vaccinated) horses were vaccinated with adjuvant only. Serum was evaluated pre- and post-vaccination, prior to challenge, for antibodies against rSnSAG1 and inhibitory effects on the infectivity of S. neurona by an in vitro serum neutralization assay. The effect of vaccination with rSnSAG1 on in vivo infection by S. neurona was evaluated by challenging all the horses with S. neurona merozoites. Blinded daily examinations and 4 blinded neurological examinations were used to evaluate the presence of clinical signs of EPM. The 5 vaccinated horses developed serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) titers of SnSAG1, detected by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), post-vaccination. Post-vaccination serum from vaccinated horses was found to have an inhibitory effect on merozoites, demonstrated by in vitro bioassay. Following the challenge, the 5 control horses displayed clinical signs of EPM, including ataxia. While 4 of the 5 vaccinated horses did not become ataxic. One rSnSAG-1 vaccinated horse showed paresis in 1 limb with muscle atrophy. All horses showed mild, transient, cranial nerve deficits; however, disease did not progress to ataxia in rSnSAG-1 vaccinated horses. The study showed that vaccination with rSnSAG-1 produced antibodies in horses that neutralized merozoites when tested by in vitro culture and significantly reduced clinical signs demonstrated by in vivo challenge.

  3. Multiangular L-band Datasets for Soil Moisture and Sea Surface Salinity Retrieval Measured by Airborne HUT-2D Synthetic Aperture Radiometer (United States)

    Kainulainen, J.; Rautiainen, K.; Seppänen, J.; Hallikainen, M.


    SMOS is the European Space Agency's next Earth Explorer satellite due for launch in 2009. It aims for global monitoring of soil moisture and ocean salinity utilizing a new technology concept for remote sensing: two-dimensional aperture synthesis radiometry. The payload of SMOS is Microwave Imaging Radiometer by Aperture Synthesis, or MIRAS. It is a passive instrument that uses 72 individual L-band receivers for measuring the brightness temperature of the Earth. From each acquisition, i.e. integration time or snapshot, MIRAS provides two-dimensional brightness temperature of the scene in the instrument's field of view. Thus, consecutive snapshots provide multiangular measurements of the target once the instrument passes over it. Depending on the position of the target in instrument's swath, the brightness temperature of the target at incidence angles from zero up to 50 degrees can be measured with one overpass. To support the development MIRAS instrument, its calibration, and soil moisture and sea surface salinity retrieval algorithm development, Helsinki University of Technology (TKK) has designed, manufactured and tested a radiometer which operates at L-band and utilizes the same two-dimensional methodology of interferometery and aperture synthesis as MIRAS does. This airborne instrument, called HUT-2D, was designed to be used on board the University's research aircraft. It provides multiangular measurements of the target in its field of view, which spans up to 30 degrees off the boresight of the instrument, which is pointed to the nadir. The number of independent measurements of each target point depends on the flight speed and altitude. In addition to the Spanish Airborne MIRAS demonstrator (AMIRAS), HUT-2D is the only European airborne synthetic aperture radiometer. This paper presents the datasets and measurement campaigns, which have been carried out using the HUT-2D radiometer and are available for the scientific community. In April 2007 HUT-2D participated

  4. A 3-step framework for understanding the added value of surface soil moisture measurements for large-scale runoff prediction via data assimilation - a synthetic study in the Arkansas-Red River basin (United States)

    Mao, Y.; Crow, W. T.; Nijssen, B.


    Soil moisture (SM) plays an important role in runoff generation both by partitioning infiltration and surface runoff during rainfall events and by controlling the rate of subsurface flow during inter-storm periods. Therefore, more accurate SM state estimation in hydrologic models is potentially beneficial for streamflow prediction. Various previous studies have explored the potential of assimilating SM data into hydrologic models for streamflow improvement. These studies have drawn inconsistent conclusions, ranging from significantly improved runoff via SM data assimilation (DA) to limited or degraded runoff. These studies commonly treat the whole assimilation procedure as a black box without separating the contribution of each step in the procedure, making it difficult to attribute the underlying causes of runoff improvement (or the lack thereof). In this study, we decompose the overall DA process into three steps by answering the following questions (3-step framework): 1) how much can assimilation of surface SM measurements improve surface SM state in a hydrologic model? 2) how much does surface SM improvement propagate to deeper layers? 3) How much does (surface and deeper-layer) SM improvement propagate into runoff improvement? A synthetic twin experiment is carried out in the Arkansas-Red River basin ( 600,000 km2) where a synthetic "truth" run, an open-loop run (without DA) and a DA run (where synthetic surface SM measurements are assimilated) are generated. All model runs are performed at 1/8 degree resolution and over a 10-year period using the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) hydrologic model at a 3-hourly time step. For the DA run, the ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF) method is applied. The updated surface and deeper-layer SM states with DA are compared to the open-loop SM to quantitatively evaluate the first two steps in the framework. To quantify the third step, a set of perfect-state runs are generated where the "true" SM states are directly inserted

  5. A novel Pfs38 protein complex on the surface of Plasmodium falciparum blood-stage merozoites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Paul, Gourab; Deshmukh, Arunaditya; Kaur, Inderjeet


    BACKGROUND: The Plasmodium genome encodes for a number of 6-Cys proteins that contain a module of six cysteine residues forming three intramolecular disulphide bonds. These proteins have been well characterized at transmission as well as hepatic stages of the parasite life cycle. In the present s...

  6. Genetic diversity of Plasmodium Vivax revealed by the merozoite surface protein-1 icb5-6 fragment. (United States)

    Ruan, Wei; Zhang, Ling-Ling; Feng, Yan; Zhang, Xuan; Chen, Hua-Liang; Lu, Qiao-Yi; Yao, Li-Nong; Hu, Wei


    Plasmodium vivax remains a potential cause of morbidity and mortality for people living in its endemic areas. Understanding the genetic diversity of P. vivax from different regions is valuable for studying population dynamics and tracing the origins of parasites. The PvMSP-1 gene is highly polymorphic and has been used as a marker in many P. vivax population studies. The aim of this study was to investigate the genetic diversity of the PvMSP-1 gene icb5-6 fragment and to provide more genetic polymorphism data for further studies on P. vivax population structure and tracking of the origin of clinical cases. Nested PCR and sequencing of the PvMSP-1 icb5-6 marker were performed to obtain the nucleotide sequences of 95 P. vivax isolates collected from Zhejiang province, China. To investigate the genetic diversity of PvMSP-1, the 95 nucleotide sequences of the PvMSP-1 icb5-6 fragment were genotyped and analyzed using DnaSP v5, MEGA software. The 95 P. vivax isolates collected from Zhejiang province were either indigenous cases or imported cases from different regions around the world. A total of 95 sequences ranging from 390 to 460 bp were obtained. The 95 sequences were genotyped into four allele-types (Sal I, Belem, R-III and R-IV) and 17 unique haplotypes. R-III and Sal I were the predominant allele-types. The haplotype diversity (Hd) and nucleotide diversity (Pi) were estimated to be 0.729 and 0.062, indicating that the PvMSP-1 icb5-6 fragment had the highest level of polymorphism due to frequent recombination processes and single nucleotide polymorphism. The values of dN/dS and Tajima's D both suggested neutral selection for the PvMSP-1icb5-6 fragment. In addition, a rare recombinant style of R-IV type was identified. This study presented high genetic diversity in the PvMSP-1 marker among P. vivax strains from around the world. The genetic data is valuable for expanding the polymorphism information on P. vivax, which could be helpful for further study on population dynamics and tracking the origin of P. vivax.

  7. Synthetic biology, inspired by synthetic chemistry. (United States)

    Malinova, V; Nallani, M; Meier, W P; Sinner, E K


    The topic synthetic biology appears still as an 'empty basket to be filled'. However, there is already plenty of claims and visions, as well as convincing research strategies about the theme of synthetic biology. First of all, synthetic biology seems to be about the engineering of biology - about bottom-up and top-down approaches, compromising complexity versus stability of artificial architectures, relevant in biology. Synthetic biology accounts for heterogeneous approaches towards minimal and even artificial life, the engineering of biochemical pathways on the organismic level, the modelling of molecular processes and finally, the combination of synthetic with nature-derived materials and architectural concepts, such as a cellular membrane. Still, synthetic biology is a discipline, which embraces interdisciplinary attempts in order to have a profound, scientific base to enable the re-design of nature and to compose architectures and processes with man-made matter. We like to give an overview about the developments in the field of synthetic biology, regarding polymer-based analogs of cellular membranes and what questions can be answered by applying synthetic polymer science towards the smallest unit in life, namely a cell. Copyright © 2012 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Plant synthetic biology. (United States)

    Liu, Wusheng; Stewart, C Neal


    Plant synthetic biology is an emerging field that combines engineering principles with plant biology toward the design and production of new devices. This emerging field should play an important role in future agriculture for traditional crop improvement, but also in enabling novel bioproduction in plants. In this review we discuss the design cycles of synthetic biology as well as key engineering principles, genetic parts, and computational tools that can be utilized in plant synthetic biology. Some pioneering examples are offered as a demonstration of how synthetic biology can be used to modify plants for specific purposes. These include synthetic sensors, synthetic metabolic pathways, and synthetic genomes. We also speculate about the future of synthetic biology of plants. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Synthetic Cathinones ("Bath Salts") (United States)

    ... Alcohol Club Drugs Cocaine Fentanyl Hallucinogens Inhalants Heroin Marijuana MDMA (Ecstasy/Molly) Methamphetamine Opioids Over-the-Counter Medicines Prescription Medicines Steroids (Anabolic) Synthetic Cannabinoids (K2/Spice) Synthetic Cathinones (Bath Salts) Tobacco/ ...

  10. Shock compression of synthetic opal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Inoue, A; Okuno, M; Okudera, H; Mashimo, T; Omurzak, E; Katayama, S; Koyano, M


    Structural change of synthetic opal by shock-wave compression up to 38.1 GPa has been investigated by using SEM, X-ray diffraction method (XRD), Infrared (IR) and Raman spectroscopies. Obtained information may indicate that the dehydration and polymerization of surface silanole due to high shock and residual temperature are very important factors in the structural evolution of synthetic opal by shock compression. Synthetic opal loses opalescence by 10.9 and 18.4 GPa of shock pressures. At 18.4 GPa, dehydration and polymerization of surface silanole and transformation of network structure may occur simultaneously. The 4-membered ring of TO 4 tetrahedrons in as synthetic opal may be relaxed to larger ring such as 6-membered ring by high residual temperature. Therefore, the residual temperature may be significantly high at even 18.4 GPa of shock compression. At 23.9 GPa, opal sample recovered the opalescence. Origin of this opalescence may be its layer structure by shock compression. Finally, sample fuse by very high residual temperature at 38.1 GPa and the structure closes to that of fused SiO 2 glass. However, internal silanole groups still remain even at 38.1 GPa.

  11. Shock compression of synthetic opal (United States)

    Inoue, A.; Okuno, M.; Okudera, H.; Mashimo, T.; Omurzak, E.; Katayama, S.; Koyano, M.


    Structural change of synthetic opal by shock-wave compression up to 38.1 GPa has been investigated by using SEM, X-ray diffraction method (XRD), Infrared (IR) and Raman spectroscopies. Obtained information may indicate that the dehydration and polymerization of surface silanole due to high shock and residual temperature are very important factors in the structural evolution of synthetic opal by shock compression. Synthetic opal loses opalescence by 10.9 and 18.4 GPa of shock pressures. At 18.4 GPa, dehydration and polymerization of surface silanole and transformation of network structure may occur simultaneously. The 4-membered ring of TO4 tetrahedrons in as synthetic opal may be relaxed to larger ring such as 6-membered ring by high residual temperature. Therefore, the residual temperature may be significantly high at even 18.4 GPa of shock compression. At 23.9 GPa, opal sample recovered the opalescence. Origin of this opalescence may be its layer structure by shock compression. Finally, sample fuse by very high residual temperature at 38.1 GPa and the structure closes to that of fused SiO2 glass. However, internal silanole groups still remain even at 38.1 GPa.

  12. Shock compression of synthetic opal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Inoue, A; Okuno, M; Okudera, H [Department of Earth Sciences, Kanazawa University Kanazawa, Ishikawa, 920-1192 (Japan); Mashimo, T; Omurzak, E [Shock Wave and Condensed Matter Research Center, Kumamoto University, Kumamoto, 860-8555 (Japan); Katayama, S; Koyano, M, E-mail: [JAIST, Nomi, Ishikawa, 923-1297 (Japan)


    Structural change of synthetic opal by shock-wave compression up to 38.1 GPa has been investigated by using SEM, X-ray diffraction method (XRD), Infrared (IR) and Raman spectroscopies. Obtained information may indicate that the dehydration and polymerization of surface silanole due to high shock and residual temperature are very important factors in the structural evolution of synthetic opal by shock compression. Synthetic opal loses opalescence by 10.9 and 18.4 GPa of shock pressures. At 18.4 GPa, dehydration and polymerization of surface silanole and transformation of network structure may occur simultaneously. The 4-membered ring of TO{sub 4} tetrahedrons in as synthetic opal may be relaxed to larger ring such as 6-membered ring by high residual temperature. Therefore, the residual temperature may be significantly high at even 18.4 GPa of shock compression. At 23.9 GPa, opal sample recovered the opalescence. Origin of this opalescence may be its layer structure by shock compression. Finally, sample fuse by very high residual temperature at 38.1 GPa and the structure closes to that of fused SiO{sub 2} glass. However, internal silanole groups still remain even at 38.1 GPa.

  13. Synthetic rubber surface as an alternative to concrete to improve welfare and performance of finishing beef cattle reared on fully slatted flooring. (United States)

    Brscic, M; Ricci, R; Prevedello, P; Lonardi, C; De Nardi, R; Contiero, B; Gottardo, F; Cozzi, G


    The aim of this study was to compare a fully slatted concrete floor (concrete slatted (CS)) with the same floor on which synthetic rubber slats were placed on the concrete slats (rubber slatted (RS)) as housing solution for finishing beef cattle. The present study involved five commercial beef cattle farms in which the floor of at least three pens was kept as fully slatted, and in an equal number of pens a rubber cover was placed on the floor, tightly matching the gap profile of the concrete slats to allow the drainage of manure. A total of 326 finishing beef bulls were used (153 on CS and 173 on RS), and regardless of the floor treatment animals were housed in groups of 6 to 12 bulls/pen with a space allowance of 3.1 ± 0.2 m2/bull. Bulls had similar initial live weights (422.3 kg on CS and 425.0 kg on RS), but bulls on RS were heavier at the end of the finishing period with a higher average daily gain than bulls kept on CS (1.53 v. 1.46 kg/day; Pfloor on growth performance and welfare of finishing beef cattle, although compromising cleanliness and hoof overgrowth.

  14. Performance and effects of land cover type on synthetic surface reflectance data and NDVI estimates for assessment and monitoring of semi-arid rangeland (United States)

    Olexa, Edward M.; Lawrence, Rick L


    Federal land management agencies provide stewardship over much of the rangelands in the arid andsemi-arid western United States, but they often lack data of the proper spatiotemporal resolution andextent needed to assess range conditions and monitor trends. Recent advances in the blending of com-plementary, remotely sensed data could provide public lands managers with the needed information.We applied the Spatial and Temporal Adaptive Reflectance Fusion Model (STARFM) to five Landsat TMand concurrent Terra MODIS scenes, and used pixel-based regression and difference image analyses toevaluate the quality of synthetic reflectance and NDVI products associated with semi-arid rangeland. Pre-dicted red reflectance data consistently demonstrated higher accuracy, less bias, and stronger correlationwith observed data than did analogous near-infrared (NIR) data. The accuracy of both bands tended todecline as the lag between base and prediction dates increased; however, mean absolute errors (MAE)were typically ≤10%. The quality of area-wide NDVI estimates was less consistent than either spectra lband, although the MAE of estimates predicted using early season base pairs were ≤10% throughout the growing season. Correlation between known and predicted NDVI values and agreement with the 1:1regression line tended to decline as the prediction lag increased. Further analyses of NDVI predictions,based on a 22 June base pair and stratified by land cover/land use (LCLU), revealed accurate estimates through the growing season; however, inter-class performance varied. This work demonstrates the successful application of the STARFM algorithm to semi-arid rangeland; however, we encourage evaluation of STARFM’s performance on a per product basis, stratified by LCLU, with attention given to the influence of base pair selection and the impact of the time lag.

  15. Evolvable synthetic neural system (United States)

    Curtis, Steven A. (Inventor)


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

  16. Kinetic analysis of synthetic analogues of linear-epitope peptides of glycoprotein D of herpes simplex virus type 1 by surface plasmon resonance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lasonder, E; Schellekens, GA; Koedijk, DGAM; Damhof, RA; WellingWester, S; Feijlbrief, M; Scheffer, AJ; Welling, GW


    The interaction between mAb A16 and glycoprorein D (gD) of herpes simplex virus type 1 was analyzed by studying the kinetics of binding with a surface-plasmon-resonance biosensor. mAb A16 belongs to group VII antibodies, which recognize residues 11-19 of gD. In a previous study, three critical

  17. [From synthetic biology to synthetic humankind]. (United States)

    Nouvel, Pascal


    In this paper, we propose an historical survey of the expression "synthetic biology" in order to identify its main philosophical components. The result of the analysis is then used to investigate the meaning of the notion of "synthetic man". It is shown that both notions share a common philosophical background that can be summed up by the short but meaningful assertion: "biology is technology". The analysis allows us to distinguish two notions that are often confused in transhumanist literature: the notion of synthetic man and the notion of renewed man. The consequences of this crucial distinction are discussed. Copyright © 2015 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  18. ApiAP2 Factors as Candidate Regulators of Stochastic Commitment to Merozoite Production in Theileria annulata.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Pieszko

    Full Text Available Differentiation of one life-cycle stage to the next is critical for survival and transmission of apicomplexan parasites. A number of studies have shown that stage differentiation is a stochastic process and is associated with a point that commits the cell to a change over in the pattern of gene expression. Studies on differentiation to merozoite production (merogony in T. annulata postulated that commitment involves a concentration threshold of DNA binding proteins and an auto-regulatory loop.In this study ApiAP2 DNA binding proteins that show changes in expression level during merogony of T. annulata have been identified. DNA motifs bound by orthologous domains in Plasmodium were found to be enriched in upstream regions of stage-regulated T. annulata genes and validated as targets for the T. annulata AP2 domains by electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA. Two findings were of particular note: the gene in T. annulata encoding the orthologue of the ApiAP2 domain in the AP2-G factor that commits Plasmodium to gametocyte production, has an expression profile indicating involvement in transmission of T. annulata to the tick vector; genes encoding related domains that bind, or are predicted to bind, sequence motifs of the type 5'-(ACACAC(A are implicated in differential regulation of gene expression, with one gene (TA11145 likely to be preferentially up-regulated via auto-regulation as the cell progresses to merogony.We postulate that the Theileria factor possessing the AP2 domain orthologous to that of Plasmodium AP2-G may regulate gametocytogenesis in a similar manner to AP2-G. In addition, paralogous ApiAP2 factors that recognise 5'-(ACACAC(A type motifs could operate in a competitive manner to promote reversible progression towards the point that commits the cell to undergo merogony. Factors possessing AP2 domains that bind (or are predicted to bind this motif are present in the vector-borne genera Theileria, Babesia and Plasmodium, and other

  19. Shedding of the immunodominant P20 surface antigen of Eimeria bovis sporozoites.


    Speer, C A; Whitmire, W M


    P20 is an immunodominant surface antigen of Eimeria bovis sporozoites. As parasites underwent merogony within cultured bovine monocytes and Madin-Darby bovine kidney (MDBK) cells, P20 appeared to be shed gradually by meronts and was absent in type 1 and 2 first-generation merozoites. Meronts of E. bovis appeared to shed P20 into the parasitophorous vacuole of bovine monocytes, whereas MDBK cells evidently released P20 into the culture medium or destroyed its antigenic determinant.

  20. Catalysts for synthetic liquid fuels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bruce, L.A.; Turney, T.W.


    Fischer-Tropsch catalysts have been designed, characterized and tested for the selective production of hydrocarbons suitable as synthetic liquid transport fuels from synthesis gas (i.e., by the reduction of carbon monoxide with hydrogen). It was found that hydrocarbons in the middle distillate range, or suitable for conversion to that range, could be produced over several of the new catalyst systems. The various catalysts examined included: (1) synthetic cobalt clays, mainly cobalt chlorites; (2) cobalt hydrotalcites; (3) ruthenium metal supported on rare earth oxides of high surface area; and (4) a novel promoted cobalt catalyst. Active and selective catalysts have been obtained, in each category. With the exception of the clays, reproducibility of catalyst performance has been good. Catalysts in groups 2 and 4 have exhibited very high activity, with long lifetimes and easy regeneration.

  1. Designing synthetic biology. (United States)

    Agapakis, Christina M


    Synthetic biology is frequently defined as the application of engineering design principles to biology. Such principles are intended to streamline the practice of biological engineering, to shorten the time required to design, build, and test synthetic gene networks. This streamlining of iterative design cycles can facilitate the future construction of biological systems for a range of applications in the production of fuels, foods, materials, and medicines. The promise of these potential applications as well as the emphasis on design has prompted critical reflection on synthetic biology from design theorists and practicing designers from many fields, who can bring valuable perspectives to the discipline. While interdisciplinary connections between biologists and engineers have built synthetic biology via the science and the technology of biology, interdisciplinary collaboration with artists, designers, and social theorists can provide insight on the connections between technology and society. Such collaborations can open up new avenues and new principles for research and design, as well as shed new light on the challenging context-dependence-both biological and social-that face living technologies at many scales. This review is inspired by the session titled "Design and Synthetic Biology: Connecting People and Technology" at Synthetic Biology 6.0 and covers a range of literature on design practice in synthetic biology and beyond. Critical engagement with how design is used to shape the discipline opens up new possibilities for how we might design the future of synthetic biology.

  2. Effects of synthetic cohesin-containing scaffold protein architecture on binding dockerin-enzyme fusions on the surface of Lactococcus lactis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wieczorek Andrew S


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The microbial synthesis of fuels, commodity chemicals, and bioactive compounds necessitates the assemblage of multiple enzyme activities to carry out sequential chemical reactions, often via substrate channeling by means of multi-domain or multi-enzyme complexes. Engineering the controlled incorporation of enzymes in recombinant protein complexes is therefore of interest. The cellulosome of Clostridium thermocellum is an extracellular enzyme complex that efficiently hydrolyzes crystalline cellulose. Enzymes interact with protein scaffolds via type 1 dockerin/cohesin interactions, while scaffolds in turn bind surface anchor proteins by means of type 2 dockerin/cohesin interactions, which demonstrate a different binding specificity than their type 1 counterparts. Recombinant chimeric scaffold proteins containing cohesins of different specificity allow binding of multiple enzymes to specific sites within an engineered complex. Results We report the successful display of engineered chimeric scaffold proteins containing both type 1 and type 2 cohesins on the surface of Lactococcus lactis cells. The chimeric scaffold proteins were able to form complexes with the Escherichia coli β-glucuronidase fused to either type 1 or type 2 dockerin, and differences in binding efficiencies were correlated with scaffold architecture. We used E. coli β-galactosidase, also fused to type 1 or type 2 dockerins, to demonstrate the targeted incorporation of two enzymes into the complexes. The simultaneous binding of enzyme pairs each containing a different dockerin resulted in bi-enzymatic complexes tethered to the cell surface. The sequential binding of the two enzymes yielded insights into parameters affecting assembly of the complex such as protein size and position within the scaffold. Conclusions The spatial organization of enzymes into complexes is an important strategy for increasing the efficiency of biochemical pathways. In this study

  3. Optical and electrical characteristics of a single surface DBD micro-discharge produced in atmospheric-pressure nitrogen and synthetic air

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šimek, Milan; Prukner, Václav; Schmidt, Jiří


    Roč. 20, č. 2 (2011), 025009-025009 ISSN 0963-0252. [European Sectional Conference on Atomic and Molecular Physics of Ionized Gases (ESCAMPIGXX)/20th./. Novi Sad , SERBIA, 13.07.2010-17.07.2010] R&D Projects: GA ČR GA202/08/1106 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z20430508 Keywords : surface barier discharge * streamer Subject RIV: BL - Plasma and Gas Discharge Physics Impact factor: 2.521, year: 2011

  4. Towards the development of cascaded surface plasmon resonance POF sensors exploiting gold films and synthetic recognition elements for detection of contaminants in transformer oil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Pesavento


    Full Text Available The possibility of developing a multichannel optical chemical sensor, based on molecularly imprinted polymers (MIPs and surface plasmon resonance (SPR in a D-shaped multimode plastic optical fiber (POF, is presented by two cascaded SPR-POF-MIP sensors with different thicknesses of the gold layer. The low cost, the high selectivity and sensitivity of the SPR-POF-MIP platforms and the simple and modular scheme of the optical interrogation layout make this system a potentially suitable on-line multi-diagnostic tool. As a proof of principle, the possibility of simultaneous determination of two important analytes, dibenzyl disulfide (DBDS and furfural (2-FAL, in power transformer oil was investigated. Their presence gives useful indication of underway corrosive or ageing processes in power transformers, respectively. Preliminarily, the dependence of the performance of the D-shaped optical platform on the gold film thickness has been studied, comparing two platforms with 30 nm and 60 nm thick gold layers. It has been found that the resonance wavelengths are different on platforms with gold layer of different thickness, furthermore when MIPs are present on the gold as receptors, the performances of the platforms are similar in the two considered sensors. Keywords: Cascaded multianalyte detection, Surface plasmon resonance, Dibenzyl disulfide, Furfural (furan-2-carbaldehyde, Molecularly imprinted polymers, Plastic optical fibers

  5. The influence of polyanion molecular weight on polyelectrolyte multilayers at surfaces: elasticity and susceptibility to saloplasticity of strongly dissociated synthetic polymers at fluid-fluid interfaces. (United States)

    Cramer, Ashley D; Dong, Wen-Fei; Benbow, Natalie L; Webber, Jessie L; Krasowska, Marta; Beattie, David A; Ferri, James K


    We studied the interfacial mechanical properties of polyelectrolyte multilayer assemblies of poly(diallylamine hydrochloride) (PAH) and poly(4-styrenesulfonate)sodium salt (PSS) at the air-water interface using axisymmetric drop shape analysis (ADSA) during hydrostatic inflation as a function of aqueous salt concentration and two different polyanion molecular weights (M w ∼ 13 and 70 kDa). Surface elastic moduli (G s ) ranged from 50 to 300 mN m -1 . Using the measured film thickness, the bulk moduli (G) ranged from 10 to 90 MPa consistent with elastomeric solids. This solid-like interface was evidenced by a systematic departure of the inflated shape from the Young-Laplace equation, which assumes a liquid-like interface. Surface elastic moduli increased and bulk elastic moduli decreased with increasing nanomembrane transverse dimension, and multilayers with the lower molecular weight anion were more transversely compact than those of higher molecular weight and displayed a larger elastic modulus. The bulk moduli of both types of multilayer assemblies asymptotically approach a constant value for films with more than two bilayers of polyelectrolyte, consistent with the observed transition from a 'glassy' to 'rubbery' state. Both types of multilayer assemblies displayed plasticization with increasing sodium chloride concentration in the adjoining aqueous phase, i.e. saloplasticity, and exhibited a transition from elastic to plastic response to deformation. The restored mobility of the polyelectrolyte resulting from the shift from intrinsic to extrinsic charge complexation, restores fluidity to the interface and is evidenced by experimental observation of a liquid-like interface when loaded. The higher molecular weight polyanion multilayers plasticized at lower salt concentrations suggesting that the lower melting point of the higher molecular weight polyanion assembly is attributable to a lesser extent of electrostatic cross-linking underscoring the unconventional

  6. An efficient sodium citrate-promoted synthetic method for the preparation of AuNPs@mesoSiO2 for surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy in the detection of diluted blood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yun Zou


    Full Text Available We report on a novel, green, and efficient organically synthetic method for the preparation of gold nanoparticles embedded in mesoporous silica (AuNPs@mesoSiO2. AuNPs@mesoSiO2 prepared by one-pot synthesis method using sodium citrate as the key reactant was applied for surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS application in the analysis of diluted blood traces. The synthesized nanoparticles are of high quality, as characterized by use of X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy. They exhibit high surface areas (170.18–883 m2/g and significant SERS enhancement. Detection of diluted blood (v/v, 1:50 traces through AuNPs@mesoSiO2 enhanced SERS is demonstrated, which has not been studied in previous literature. The combination of the SERS and AuNPs@mesoSiO2 would be a valuable tool for forensic investigation. Keywords: Gold nanoparticles, Mesoporous materials, Synthesis, SERS, Blood trace

  7. Exploratory Data Analysis of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR Measurements to Distinguish the Sea Surface Expressions of Naturally-Occurring Oil Seeps from Human-Related Oil Spills in Campeche Bay (Gulf of Mexico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gustavo de Araújo Carvalho


    Full Text Available An Exploratory Data Analysis (EDA aims to use Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR measurements for discriminating between two oil slick types observed on the sea surface: naturally-occurring oil seeps versus human-related oil spills—the use of satellite sensors for this task is poorly documented in scientific literature. A long-term RADARSAT dataset (2008–2012 is exploited to investigate oil slicks in Campeche Bay (Gulf of Mexico. Simple Classification Algorithms to distinguish the oil slick type are designed based on standard multivariate data analysis techniques. Various attributes of geometry, shape, and dimension that describe the oil slick Size Information are combined with SAR-derived backscatter coefficients—sigma-(σo, beta-(βo, and gamma-(γo naught. The combination of several of these characteristics is capable of distinguishing the oil slick type with ~70% of overall accuracy, however, the sole and simple use of two specific oil slick’s Size Information (i.e., area and perimeter is equally capable of distinguishing seeps from spills. The data mining exercise of our EDA promotes a novel idea bridging petroleum pollution and remote sensing research, thus paving the way to further investigate the satellite synoptic view to express geophysical differences between seeped and spilled oil observed on the sea surface for systematic use.

  8. Synthetic Defects for Vibrothermography (United States)

    Renshaw, Jeremy; Holland, Stephen D.; Thompson, R. Bruce; Eisenmann, David J.


    Synthetic defects are an important tool used for characterizing the performance of nondestructive evaluation techniques. Viscous material-filled synthetic defects were developed for use in vibrothermography (also known as sonic IR) as a tool to improve inspection accuracy and reliability. This paper describes how the heat-generation response of these VMF synthetic defects is similar to the response of real defects. It also shows how VMF defects can be applied to improve inspection accuracy for complex industrial parts and presents a study of their application in an aircraft engine stator vane.

  9. Synthetic biological networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Archer, Eric; Süel, Gürol M


    Despite their obvious relationship and overlap, the field of physics is blessed with many insightful laws, while such laws are sadly absent in biology. Here we aim to discuss how the rise of a more recent field known as synthetic biology may allow us to more directly test hypotheses regarding the possible design principles of natural biological networks and systems. In particular, this review focuses on synthetic gene regulatory networks engineered to perform specific functions or exhibit particular dynamic behaviors. Advances in synthetic biology may set the stage to uncover the relationship of potential biological principles to those developed in physics. (review article)

  10. The enhancing power of iodide on corrosion prevention of mild steel in the presence of a synthetic-soluble Schiff-base: Electrochemical and surface analyses

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lashgari, Mohsen; Arshadi, Mohammad-Reza; Miandari, Somaieh


    The inhibitory action of N,N'-1,3-propylen-bis(3-methoxysalicylidenimine) {PMSI} on mild steel corrosion in sulfuric acid medium was investigated through electrochemical methods and evaluations based on infrared spectroscopy and scanning electron micrographs. The studies revealed that the molecule is a good mixed-type inhibitor (mostly anodic), acts as a multi-dentate ligand and repels the corrosive agents by hydrophobic forces. Its adsorption on metal surface has a physicochemical nature and obeys the Langmuir isotherm. At a critical (optimum) concentration, an anomalous inhibitory behavior was observed and interpreted at microscopic level by means of desorption/adsorption process and horizontal ↔vertical hypothesis. The addition of iodide into acid moreover causes a synergistic influence, a substantial enhancement on inhibitory performance. Finally, using isolated inhibitor calculations at B3LYP/6-31G + (d,p) level of theory, the equilibrium geometry of PMSI was determined and the energy required for hindrance avoidance was predicted.

  11. Models for synthetic biology. (United States)

    Kaznessis, Yiannis N


    Synthetic biological engineering is emerging from biology as a distinct discipline based on quantification. The technologies propelling synthetic biology are not new, nor is the concept of designing novel biological molecules. What is new is the emphasis on system behavior. The objective is the design and construction of new biological devices and systems to deliver useful applications. Numerous synthetic gene circuits have been created in the past decade, including bistable switches, oscillators, and logic gates, and possible applications abound, including biofuels, detectors for biochemical and chemical weapons, disease diagnosis, and gene therapies. More than fifty years after the discovery of the molecular structure of DNA, molecular biology is mature enough for real quantification that is useful for biological engineering applications, similar to the revolution in modeling in chemistry in the 1950s. With the excitement that synthetic biology is generating, the engineering and biological science communities appear remarkably willing to cross disciplinary boundaries toward a common goal.

  12. Technical Assessment: Synthetic Biology (United States)


    Pfizer, Bausch & Lomb, Coca - Cola , and other Fortune 500 companies 8 Data estimated by the... financial prize for ideas to drive forward the production of a sensor relying on synthetic organisms that can detect exposure to 500 specific chemicals

  13. Active microwave remote sensing research program plan. Recommendations of the Earth Resources Synthetic Aperture Radar Task Force. [application areas: vegetation canopies, surface water, surface morphology, rocks and soils, and man-made structures (United States)


    A research program plan developed by the Office of Space and Terrestrial Applications to provide guidelines for a concentrated effort to improve the understanding of the measurement capabilities of active microwave imaging sensors, and to define the role of such sensors in future Earth observations programs is outlined. The focus of the planned activities is on renewable and non-renewable resources. Five general application areas are addressed: (1) vegetation canopies, (2) surface water, (3) surface morphology, (4) rocks and soils, and (5) man-made structures. Research tasks are described which, when accomplished, will clearly establish the measurement capabilities in each area, and provide the theoretical and empirical results needed to specify and justify satellite systems using imaging radar sensors for global observations.

  14. Synthetic aperture radar capabilities in development

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miller, M. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab., CA (United States)


    The Imaging and Detection Program (IDP) within the Laser Program is currently developing an X-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) to support the Joint US/UK Radar Ocean Imaging Program. The radar system will be mounted in the program`s Airborne Experimental Test-Bed (AETB), where the initial mission is to image ocean surfaces and better understand the physics of low grazing angle backscatter. The Synthetic Aperture Radar presentation will discuss its overall functionality and a brief discussion on the AETB`s capabilities. Vital subsystems including radar, computer, navigation, antenna stabilization, and SAR focusing algorithms will be examined in more detail.

  15. What Are Synthetic Cannabinoids? (United States)

    ... years, synthetic cannabinoid mixtures have been easy to buy in drug paraphernalia shops, novelty stores, gas stations, and over ... abuse, authorities have made it illegal to sell, buy, or possess some of ... use is that standard drug tests cannot easily detect many of the chemicals ...

  16. Synthetic Aperture Sequential Beamforming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kortbek, Jacob; Jensen, Jørgen Arendt; Gammelmark, Kim Løkke


    A synthetic aperture focusing (SAF) technique denoted Synthetic Aperture Sequential Beamforming (SASB) suitable for 2D and 3D imaging is presented. The technique differ from prior art of SAF in the sense that SAF is performed on pre-beamformed data contrary to channel data. The objective is to im......A synthetic aperture focusing (SAF) technique denoted Synthetic Aperture Sequential Beamforming (SASB) suitable for 2D and 3D imaging is presented. The technique differ from prior art of SAF in the sense that SAF is performed on pre-beamformed data contrary to channel data. The objective...... is to improve and obtain a more range independent lateral resolution compared to conventional dynamic receive focusing (DRF) without compromising frame rate. SASB is a two-stage procedure using two separate beamformers. First a set of Bmode image lines using a single focal point in both transmit and receive...... is stored. The second stage applies the focused image lines from the first stage as input data. The SASB method has been investigated using simulations in Field II and by off-line processing of data acquired with a commercial scanner. The performance of SASB with a static image object is compared with DRF...

  17. Building synthetic cellular organization


    Polka, Jessica K.; Silver, Pamela A.


    The elaborate spatial organization of cells enhances, restricts, and regulates protein–protein interactions. However, the biological significance of this organization has been difficult to study without ways of directly perturbing it. We highlight synthetic biology tools for engineering novel cellular organization, describing how they have been, and can be, used to advance cell biology.

  18. Towards a synthetic chloroplast.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina M Agapakis


    Full Text Available The evolution of eukaryotic cells is widely agreed to have proceeded through a series of endosymbiotic events between larger cells and proteobacteria or cyanobacteria, leading to the formation of mitochondria or chloroplasts, respectively. Engineered endosymbiotic relationships between different species of cells are a valuable tool for synthetic biology, where engineered pathways based on two species could take advantage of the unique abilities of each mutualistic partner.We explored the possibility of using the photosynthetic bacterium Synechococcus elongatus PCC 7942 as a platform for studying evolutionary dynamics and for designing two-species synthetic biological systems. We observed that the cyanobacteria were relatively harmless to eukaryotic host cells compared to Escherichia coli when injected into the embryos of zebrafish, Danio rerio, or taken up by mammalian macrophages. In addition, when engineered with invasin from Yersinia pestis and listeriolysin O from Listeria monocytogenes, S. elongatus was able to invade cultured mammalian cells and divide inside macrophages.Our results show that it is possible to engineer photosynthetic bacteria to invade the cytoplasm of mammalian cells for further engineering and applications in synthetic biology. Engineered invasive but non-pathogenic or immunogenic photosynthetic bacteria have great potential as synthetic biological devices.

  19. Synthetic Metabolic Pathways

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    topics, lists of the necessary materials and reagents, step-by-step, readily reproducible laboratory protocols, and tips on troubleshooting and avoiding known pitfalls. Authoritative and practical, Synthetic Metabolic Pathways: Methods and Protocols aims to ensure successful results in the further study...

  20. Cfd modeling of a synthetic jet actuator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dghim, Marouane; Ben Chiekh, Maher; Ben Nasrallah, Sassi


    Synthetic jet actuators show good promise as an enabling technology for innovative boundary layer flow control applied to external surfaces, like airplane wings, and to internal flows, like those occurring in a curved engine inlet. The appealing characteristics of a synthetic jet are zero-net-mass flux operation and an efficient control effect that takes advantages of unsteady fluid phenomena. The formation of a synthetic jet in a quiescent external air flow is only beginning to be understood and a rational understanding of these devices is necessary before they can be applied to the control of flows outside of the laboratory. The synthetic jet flow generated by a planar orifice is investigated here using computational approach. Computations of the 2D synthetic jet are performed with unsteady RANS modeled with the Realizable κ - ε turbulence model available in FLUENT environment. In this present work, the ability of the first order turbulence model, employed in our computations, to model the formation of the counter-rotating-vortex pair (CVP) that appears in the flow-field was investigated. Computational results were in good agreement with experimental measurements. The effectiveness of such control actuator was tested on separated boundary layer. Preliminary investigation were presented and discussed

  1. Synthetic Electric Microbial Biosensors (United States)


    domains and DNA-binding domains into a single protein for deregulation of down stream genes of have been favored [10]. Initially experiments with... Germany DISTRIBUTION A. Approved for public release: distribution unlimited.   Talk title: “Synthetic biology based microbial biosensors for the...toolbox” in Heidelberg, Germany Poster title: “Anaerobic whole cell microbial biosensors” Link:   September, 2014

  2. Opportunities in plant synthetic biology. (United States)

    Cook, Charis; Martin, Lisa; Bastow, Ruth


    Synthetic biology is an emerging field uniting scientists from all disciplines with the aim of designing or re-designing biological processes. Initially, synthetic biology breakthroughs came from microbiology, chemistry, physics, computer science, materials science, mathematics, and engineering disciplines. A transition to multicellular systems is the next logical step for synthetic biologists and plants will provide an ideal platform for this new phase of research. This meeting report highlights some of the exciting plant synthetic biology projects, and tools and resources, presented and discussed at the 2013 GARNet workshop on plant synthetic biology.

  3. Synthetic staggered architecture composites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dutta, Abhishek; Tekalur, Srinivasan Arjun


    Highlights: ► Composite design inspired by nature. ► Tuning microstructure via changing ceramic content and aspect ratio. ► Experimental display of structure–property correlationship in synthetic composites. - Abstract: Structural biocomposites (for example, nacre in seashells, bone, etc.) are designed according to the functional role they are delegated for. For instance, bone is primarily designed for withstanding time-dependent loading (for example, withstanding stresses while running, jumping, accidental fall) and hence the microstructure is designed primarily from enhanced toughness and moderate stiffness point of view. On the contrary, seashells (which lie in the abyss of oceans) apart from providing defense to the organism (it is hosting) against predatory attacks, are subjected to static loading (for example, enormous hydrostatic pressure). Hence, emphasis on the shell structure evolution is directed primarily towards providing enhanced stiffness. In order to conform between stiffness and toughness, nature precisely employs a staggered arrangement of inorganic bricks in a biopolymer matrix (at its most elementary level of architecture). Aspect ratio and content of ceramic bricks are meticulously used by nature to synthesize composites having varying degrees of stiffness, strength and toughness. Such an amazing capability of structure–property correlationship has rarely been demonstrated in synthetic composites. Therefore, in order to better understand the mechanical behavior of synthetic staggered composites, the problem becomes two-pronged: (a) synthesize composites with varying brick size and contents and (b) experimental investigation of the material response. In this article, an attempt has been made to synthesize and characterize staggered ceramic–polymer composites having varying aspect ratio and ceramic content using freeze-casting technique. This will in-turn help us in custom-design manufacture of hybrid bio-inspired composite materials

  4. Synthetic Aperture Ultrasound Imaging

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Jørgen Arendt; Nikolov, Svetoslav; Gammelmark, Kim Løkke


    The paper describes the use of synthetic aperture (SA) imaging in medical ultrasound. SA imaging is a radical break with today's commercial systems, where the image is acquired sequentially one image line at a time. This puts a strict limit on the frame rate and the possibility of acquiring...... a sufficient amount of data for high precision flow estimation. These constrictions can be lifted by employing SA imaging. Here data is acquired simultaneously from all directions over a number of emissions, and the full image can be reconstructed from this data. The talk will demonstrate the many benefits...

  5. Transition in synthetic jets

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tesař, Václav; Kordík, Jozef


    Roč. 187, NOV 2012 (2012), s. 105-117 ISSN 0924-4247 R&D Projects: GA TA ČR(CZ) TA02020795; GA ČR(CZ) GPP101/12/P556; GA ČR(CZ) GCP101/11/J019 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z20760514 Keywords : turbulence * synthetic jet * transition * velocity spectra Subject RIV: BK - Fluid Dynamics Impact factor: 1.841, year: 2012 http://www. science science /article/pii/S0924424712005031

  6. Carbon Nanotube-Based Synthetic Gecko Tapes (United States)

    Dhinojwala, Ali


    Wall-climbing geckos have unique ability to attach to different surfaces without the use of any viscoelastic glues. On coming in contact with any surface, the micron-size gecko foot-hairs deform, enabling molecular contact over large areas, thus translating weak van der Waals (vdW) interactions into enormous shear forces. We will present our recent results on the development of synthetic gecko tape using aligned carbon nanotubes to mimic the keratin hairs found on gecko feet. The patterned carbon nanotube-based gecko tape can support a shear stress (36 N/cm^2) nearly four times higher than the gecko foot and sticks to a variety of surfaces, including Teflon. Both the micron-size setae (replicated by nanotube bundles) and nanometer-size spatulas (individual nanotubes) are necessary to achieve macroscopic shear adhesion and to translate the weak vdW interactions into high shear forces. The carbon nanotube based tape offers an excellent synthetic option as a dry conductive reversible adhesive in microelectronics, robotics and space applications. The mechanism behind these large shear forces and self-cleaning properties of these carbon nanotube based synthetic gecko tapes will be discussed. This work was performed in collaboration with graduate students Liehui Ge, and Sunny Sethi, and collaborators from RPI; Lijie Ci and Professor Pulickel Ajayan.

  7. Freedom and Responsibility in Synthetic Genomics: The Synthetic Yeast Project


    Sliva, Anna; Yang, Huanming; Boeke, Jef D.; Mathews, Debra J. H.


    First introduced in 2011, the Synthetic Yeast Genome (Sc2.0) Project is a large international synthetic genomics project that will culminate in the first eukaryotic cell (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) with a fully synthetic genome. With collaborators from across the globe and from a range of institutions spanning from do-it-yourself biology (DIYbio) to commercial enterprises, it is important that all scientists working on this project are cognizant of the ethical and policy issues associated with...

  8. Analog synthetic biology. (United States)

    Sarpeshkar, R


    We analyse the pros and cons of analog versus digital computation in living cells. Our analysis is based on fundamental laws of noise in gene and protein expression, which set limits on the energy, time, space, molecular count and part-count resources needed to compute at a given level of precision. We conclude that analog computation is significantly more efficient in its use of resources than deterministic digital computation even at relatively high levels of precision in the cell. Based on this analysis, we conclude that synthetic biology must use analog, collective analog, probabilistic and hybrid analog-digital computational approaches; otherwise, even relatively simple synthetic computations in cells such as addition will exceed energy and molecular-count budgets. We present schematics for efficiently representing analog DNA-protein computation in cells. Analog electronic flow in subthreshold transistors and analog molecular flux in chemical reactions obey Boltzmann exponential laws of thermodynamics and are described by astoundingly similar logarithmic electrochemical potentials. Therefore, cytomorphic circuits can help to map circuit designs between electronic and biochemical domains. We review recent work that uses positive-feedback linearization circuits to architect wide-dynamic-range logarithmic analog computation in Escherichia coli using three transcription factors, nearly two orders of magnitude more efficient in parts than prior digital implementations.

  9. Synthetic lubricating oils

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rodriguez Jurado, J


    A yellow solid petroleum paraffin d/sup 60/ 0.808, I number 3.5, average molecular weight 350, chlorinated and condensed with benzene, xylene, or naphthalene by the Friedel and Crafts reaction, in the presence of anhydrous AlCl/sub 3/ or activated Al, gave synthetic lubricating oils. Xylene was the preferred aromatic compound, naphthalene required the use of less completely chlorinated paraffin, benzene produced resins difficult to remove and gave darker oils with excessive green fluorescence. Activated Al rather than anhydrous AlCl/sub 3/ gave darker oils with higher viscosity and Conradson C values. Tar from the low-temperature distillation of lignite, used as a source of a paraffin fraction melting 40/sup 0/ to 48/sup 0/ (chlorinated to 26.5 percent Cl) and an aromatic fraction, 45 percent aromatic compounds by volume (mainly polysubstituted benzenes), I number 10, was converted to a similar synthetic lubricant with the following properties: Kinematic viscosity at 210/sup 0/ F., 50.4 centistokes; viscosity index, 92; Conradson C, 1.5 percent; solidification point, 9/sup 0/; S, 0.41 percent.

  10. Coloring of synthetic fluorite

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Birsoy, R.


    A synthetic fluorite of the Harshaw Chemical Company is analyzed for rare earth elements, yttrium, and sodium. Samples of this fluorite are irradiated with X-rays, γ-rays, neutrons, electrons, protons, and α-particles at different energies, and their absorption spectra are analyzed. Analyzing the thermal bleaching of these radiation-coloured fluorites shows that both, impurities and radiation play a part in the coloration of synthetic fluorite. However, the main contribution comes from the radiation induced lattice defects. In the visible region spectra, the colour centre of the 5800 to 5900 A absorption band is probably mainly related with large aggregates of F-centres. The 5450 and the 5300 A absorption bands are mainly related to monovalent and divalent ion impurities and their association with lattice defects. The 3800 A absorption band seems to be related with F-centre aggregates. However, the contribution from the rare earth elements related complex color centres also plays some part for the production of this absorption band. These results indicate that the color centres of different origin can absorb light at the same wavelength. (author)

  11. Space Synthetic Biology Project (United States)

    Howard, David; Roman, Monsi; Mansell, James (Matt)


    Synthetic biology is an effort to make genetic engineering more useful by standardizing sections of genetic code. By standardizing genetic components, biological engineering will become much more similar to traditional fields of engineering, in which well-defined components and subsystems are readily available in markets. Specifications of the behavior of those components and subsystems can be used to model a system which incorporates them. Then, the behavior of the novel system can be simulated and optimized. Finally, the components and subsystems can be purchased and assembled to create the optimized system, which most often will exhibit behavior similar to that indicated by the model. The Space Synthetic Biology project began in 2012 as a multi-Center effort. The purpose of this project was to harness Synthetic Biology principals to enable NASA's missions. A central target for application was to Environmental Control & Life Support (ECLS). Engineers from NASA Marshall Space Flight Center's (MSFC's) ECLS Systems Development Branch (ES62) were brought into the project to contribute expertise in operational ECLS systems. Project lead scientists chose to pursue the development of bioelectrochemical technologies to spacecraft life support. Therefore, the ECLS element of the project became essentially an effort to develop a bioelectrochemical ECLS subsystem. Bioelectrochemical systems exploit the ability of many microorganisms to drive their metabolisms by direct or indirect utilization of electrical potential gradients. Whereas many microorganisms are capable of deriving the energy required for the processes of interest (such as carbon dioxide (CO2) fixation) from sunlight, it is believed that subsystems utilizing electrotrophs will exhibit smaller mass, volume, and power requirements than those that derive their energy from sunlight. In the first 2 years of the project, MSFC personnel conducted modeling, simulation, and conceptual design efforts to assist the

  12. Human recombinant antibodies against Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein 3 cloned from peripheral blood leukocytes of individuals with immunity to malaria demonstrate antiparasitic properties

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lundquist, Rasmus; Nielsen, Leif Kofoed; Jafarshad, Ali


    against MSP-3 residues 194 to 257 (MSP-3(194-257)) on the molecular level. mRNA from peripheral blood leukocytes from clinically immune individuals was used as a source of Fab (fragment antibody) genes. A Fab-phage display library was made, and three distinct antibodies designated RAM1, RAM2, and RAM3...

  13. Production of a Recombinant E. coli Expressed Malarial Vaccine from the C-Terminal Fragment of Plasmodium Falciparum 3D7 Merozoite Surface Protein-1

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Angov, Evelina


    .... However, it appears to lack T-helper epitopes. Since antibody is likely the effector mechanism induced by MSP1-19, it is important to insure that recombinant vaccines based on this antigen be folded correctly and contain T-helper epitopes...

  14. Production of a Recombinant E. coli Expressed Malarial Vaccine from the C-Terminal Fragment of Plasmodium Falciparum 3D7 Merozoite Surface Protein-1

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Angov, Evelina


    .... Since antibody is likely the effector mechanism induced by MSP-(42), it is important to insure that recombinant vaccines based upon this antigen be folded correctly and contain T-helper epitopes that will enhance induction of humoral responses...

  15. Differential patterns of human immunoglobulin G subclass responses to distinct regions of a single protein, the merozoite surface protein 1 of Plasmodium falciparum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cavanagh, D R; Dobaño, C; Elhassan, I M


    Comparisons of immunoglobulin G (IgG) subclass responses to the major polymorphic region and to a conserved region of MSP-1 in three cohorts of African villagers exposed to Plasmodium falciparum revealed that responses to Block 2 are predominantly IgG3 whereas antibodies to MSP-1(19) are mainly IgG......1. The striking dominance of IgG3 to Block 2 may explain the short duration of this response and also the requirement for continuous stimulation by malaria infection to maintain clinical immunity....

  16. Genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum merozoite surface protein-1 (block 2), glutamate-rich protein and sexual stage antigen Pfs25 from Chandigarh, North India. (United States)

    Kaur, Hargobinder; Sehgal, Rakesh; Goyal, Kapil; Makkar, Nikita; Yadav, Richa; Bharti, Praveen K; Singh, Neeru; Sarmah, Nilanju P; Mohapatra, Pradyumna K; Mahanta, Jagadish; Bansal, Devendra; Sultan, Ali A; Kanwar, Jagat R


    To elucidate the genetic diversity of Plasmodium falciparum in residual transmission foci of northern India. Clinically suspected patients with malaria were screened for malaria infection by microscopy. 48 P. falciparum-infected patients were enrolled from tertiary care hospital in Chandigarh, India. Blood samples were collected from enrolled patients, genomic DNA extraction and nested PCR was performed for further species confirmation. Sanger sequencing was carried out using block 2 region of msp1, R2 region of glurp and pfs25-specific primers. Extensive diversity was found in msp1 alleles with predominantly RO33 alleles. Overall allelic prevalence was 55.8% for RO33, 39.5% for MAD20 and 4.7% for K1. Six variants were observed in MAD20, whereas no variant was found in RO33 and K1 alleles. A phylogenetic analysis of RO33 alleles indicated more similarity to South African isolates, whereas MAD20 alleles showed similarity with South-East Asian isolates. In glurp, extensive variation was observed with eleven different alleles based on the AAU repeats. However, pfs25 showed less diversity and was the most stable among the targeted genes. Our findings document the genetic diversity among circulating strains of P. falciparum in an area of India with low malaria transmission and could have implications for control strategies to reach the national goal of malaria elimination. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Current status of synthetic epikeratoplasty. (United States)

    Thompson, K P; Hanna, K; Waring, G O; Gipson, I; Liu, Y; Gailitis, R P; Johnson-Wint, B; Green, K


    Many of the deficiencies with human tissue epikeratoplasty might be improved by the use of a suitable synthetic lenticule. Potential biomaterials for epikeratoplasty include collagen (types I, III, or IV), collagen-hydrogel copolymers, bioactive synthetics, and coated hydrogels. The biomaterial must be engineered to achieve strict specifications of optical clarity, support of epithelial migration and adhesion, permeability to solutes, and stability to corneal proteases. Attaching synthetic lenticules to the cornea without cutting Bowman's layer by adhesives, laser welding, or direct adhesion may also improve the efficacy of synthetic epikeratoplasty.

  18. Synthetic biology and occupational risk. (United States)

    Howard, John; Murashov, Vladimir; Schulte, Paul


    Synthetic biology is an emerging interdisciplinary field of biotechnology that involves applying the principles of engineering and chemical design to biological systems. Biosafety professionals have done an excellent job in addressing research laboratory safety as synthetic biology and gene editing have emerged from the larger field of biotechnology. Despite these efforts, risks posed by synthetic biology are of increasing concern as research procedures scale up to industrial processes in the larger bioeconomy. A greater number and variety of workers will be exposed to commercial synthetic biology risks in the future, including risks to a variety of workers from the use of lentiviral vectors as gene transfer devices. There is a need to review and enhance current protection measures in the field of synthetic biology, whether in experimental laboratories where new advances are being researched, in health care settings where treatments using viral vectors as gene delivery systems are increasingly being used, or in the industrial bioeconomy. Enhanced worker protection measures should include increased injury and illness surveillance of the synthetic biology workforce; proactive risk assessment and management of synthetic biology products; research on the relative effectiveness of extrinsic and intrinsic biocontainment methods; specific safety guidance for synthetic biology industrial processes; determination of appropriate medical mitigation measures for lentiviral vector exposure incidents; and greater awareness and involvement in synthetic biology safety by the general occupational safety and health community as well as by government occupational safety and health research and regulatory agencies.

  19. Finding Hope in Synthetic Biology. (United States)

    Takala, Tuija


    For some, synthetic biology represents great hope in offering possible solutions to many of the world's biggest problems, from hunger to sustainable development. Others remain fearful of the harmful uses, such as bioweapons, that synthetic biology can lend itself to, and most hold that issues of biosafety are of utmost importance. In this article, I will evaluate these points of view and conclude that although the biggest promises of synthetic biology are unlikely to become reality, and the probability of accidents is fairly substantial, synthetic biology could still be seen to benefit humanity by enhancing our ethical understanding and by offering a boost to world economy.

  20. Tissue Harmonic Synthetic Aperture Imaging

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Joachim

    The main purpose of this PhD project is to develop an ultrasonic method for tissue harmonic synthetic aperture imaging. The motivation is to advance the field of synthetic aperture imaging in ultrasound, which has shown great potentials in the clinic. Suggestions for synthetic aperture tissue...... system complexity compared to conventional synthetic aperture techniques. In this project, SASB is sought combined with a pulse inversion technique for 2nd harmonic tissue harmonic imaging. The advantages in tissue harmonic imaging (THI) are expected to further improve the image quality of SASB...

  1. Life after the synthetic cell

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Steen


    Nature asked eight synthetic-biology experts about the implications for science and society of the “synthetic cell” made by the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI). The institute's team assembled, modified and implanted a synthesized genome into a DNA-free bacterial shell to make a self-replicating ......Nature asked eight synthetic-biology experts about the implications for science and society of the “synthetic cell” made by the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI). The institute's team assembled, modified and implanted a synthesized genome into a DNA-free bacterial shell to make a self...

  2. Computational synthetic geometry

    CERN Document Server

    Bokowski, Jürgen


    Computational synthetic geometry deals with methods for realizing abstract geometric objects in concrete vector spaces. This research monograph considers a large class of problems from convexity and discrete geometry including constructing convex polytopes from simplicial complexes, vector geometries from incidence structures and hyperplane arrangements from oriented matroids. It turns out that algorithms for these constructions exist if and only if arbitrary polynomial equations are decidable with respect to the underlying field. Besides such complexity theorems a variety of symbolic algorithms are discussed, and the methods are applied to obtain new mathematical results on convex polytopes, projective configurations and the combinatorics of Grassmann varieties. Finally algebraic varieties characterizing matroids and oriented matroids are introduced providing a new basis for applying computer algebra methods in this field. The necessary background knowledge is reviewed briefly. The text is accessible to stud...

  3. Synthetic Aperture Compound Imaging

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Jens Munk

    and the limiting factor is the amount of memory IO resources available. An equally high demand for memory throughput is found in the computer gaming industry, where a large part of the processing takes place on the graphics processing unit (GPU). Using the GPU, a framework for synthetic aperture imaging......Medical ultrasound imaging is used for many purposes, e.g. for localizing and classifying cysts, lesions, and other processes. Almost any mass is first observed using B-mode imaging and later classified using e.g. color flow, strain, or attenuation imaging. It is therefore important that the B......-mode images have high contrast. Like all imaging modalities, ultrasound is subject to a number of inherent artifacts that compromise image quality. The most prominent artifact is the degradation by coherent wave interference, known as “speckle”, which gives a granular appearance to an otherwise homogeneous...

  4. Transionospheric synthetic aperture imaging

    CERN Document Server

    Gilman, Mikhail; Tsynkov, Semyon


    This landmark monograph presents the most recent mathematical developments in the analysis of ionospheric distortions of SAR images and offers innovative new strategies for their mitigation. As a prerequisite to addressing these topics, the book also discusses the radar ambiguity theory as it applies to synthetic aperture imaging and the propagation of radio waves through the ionospheric plasma, including the anisotropic and turbulent cases. In addition, it covers a host of related subjects, such as the mathematical modeling of extended radar targets (as opposed to point-wise targets) and the scattering of radio waves off those targets, as well as the theoretical analysis of the start-stop approximation, which is used routinely in SAR signal processing but often without proper justification. The mathematics in this volume is clean and rigorous – no assumptions are hidden or ambiguously stated. The resulting work is truly interdisciplinary, providing both a comprehensive and thorough exposition of the field,...

  5. Radioimmunoassay of synthetic steroids

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Raynaud, J -P; Bucourt, R; Salmon, J


    The sensitivity of a radioimmunoassay depends on the intrinsic association constant of the interaction between ligand and antibody. Its specificity depends on the position of the chain which forms the link with the antigen. Thus, an antibody specific of estradiol has been obtained by coupling estradiol to albumin via a chain at position 7. For synthetic steroids the structure of which is sufficiency different from that of natural hormones, the requirements for a sensitive assay method not involving chromatography are simply maximum affinity and positioning of the couple at a site which does not undergo metabolic attack. These criteria were used to develop assays for R 2858 and R 2453 which obviate the need to administer radioactive product in clinical pharmacology. Cross-reaction with structural analogs may be used to assay competitors. Thus, R 2323 antibody, highly specific for endogenous steroids, may be used to assay other trienes such as R 1697 (trenbolone) and R 2010 (norgestrienone).

  6. Synthetic fuels and fusion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fillo, J A; Powell, J; Steinberg, M [Brookhaven National Lab., Upton, NY (USA)


    The decreasing availability of fossil fuels emphasizes the need to develop systems which will produce synthetic fuel to substitute for and supplement the natural supply. An important first step in the synthesis of liquid and gaseous fuels is the production of hydrogen. Thermonuclear fusion offers an inexhaustible source of energy for the production of hydrogen from water. Depending on design, electric generation efficiencies of approx. equal to 40-60% and hydrogen production efficiencies by high temperature electrolysis of approx. equal to 50-70% are projected for fusion reactors using high temperature blankets. Fusion/coal symbiotic systems appear economically promising for the first generation of commercial fusion synfuels plants. Coal production requirements and the environmental effects of large-scale coal usage would be greatly reduced by a fusion/coal system. In the long-term, there could be a gradual transition to an inexhaustible energy system based solely on fusion.

  7. Moessbauer Study of Discoloration of Synthetic Resin Covered Electric Switches

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuzmann, E.; Muzsay, I.; Homonnay, Z.; Vertes, A.


    57 Fe Moessbauer spectroscopy and X-ray diffractometry were used to investigate brown discoloration and sediments formed on the surface of synthetic resin product covered electronic switches. The Moessbauer measurement revealed that alloyed steels and iron-containing corrosion products are associated with the discolored layers. Iron, and iron corrosion products were shown by both MS and XRD in the sediments formed eventually during the finishing of the synthetic resin products after machining and washing with water solution.

  8. Hydrothermal Gasification Of Synthetic Liquefied Wood To Methane

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Waldner, M.H.; De Boni, E.; Vogel, F.


    Biomass can be effectively converted to synthetic natural gas (SNG) in a hydrothermal environment. Lower temperatures favor the production of methane rather than hydrogen. At around 420 C, catalysts are needed to ensure reasonable rates of reaction. They are tested in a new rig in terms of activity, selectivity and stability. Gold-plated surfaces ensure no interference from the stainless steel. Experiments were carried out using different feeds, such as ethanol and synthetic liquefied wood. (author)

  9. Imaging with Synthetic Aperture Radar

    CERN Document Server

    Massonnet, Didier


    Describing a field that has been transformed by the recent availability of data from a new generation of space and airborne systems, the authors offer a synthetic geometrical approach to the description of synthetic aperture radar, one that addresses physicists, radar specialists, as well as experts in image processing.  

  10. Synthetic peptides for antibody production

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zegers, N.D.


    Synthetic peptides are useful tools for the generation of antibodies. The use of antibodies as specific reagents in inununochemical assays is widely applied. In this chapter, the application of synthetic peptides for the generation of antibodies is described. The different steps that lead to the

  11. Synthetic peptides for antibody production

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    N.D. Zegers (Netty)


    textabstractSynthetic peptides are useful tools for the generation of antibodies. The use of antibodies as specific reagents in inununochemical assays is widely applied. In this chapter, the application of synthetic peptides for the generation of antibodies is described. The different steps

  12. Synthetic biology and metabolic engineering. (United States)

    Stephanopoulos, Gregory


    Metabolic engineering emerged 20 years ago as the discipline occupied with the directed modification of metabolic pathways for the microbial synthesis of various products. As such, it deals with the engineering (design, construction, and optimization) of native as well as non-natural routes of product synthesis, aided in this task by the availability of synthetic DNA, the core enabling technology of synthetic biology. The two fields, however, only partially overlap in their interest in pathway engineering. While fabrication of biobricks, synthetic cells, genetic circuits, and nonlinear cell dynamics, along with pathway engineering, have occupied researchers in the field of synthetic biology, the sum total of these areas does not constitute a coherent definition of synthetic biology with a distinct intellectual foundation and well-defined areas of application. This paper reviews the origins of the two fields and advances two distinct paradigms for each of them: that of unit operations for metabolic engineering and electronic circuits for synthetic biology. In this context, metabolic engineering is about engineering cell factories for the biological manufacturing of chemical and pharmaceutical products, whereas the main focus of synthetic biology is fundamental biological research facilitated by the use of synthetic DNA and genetic circuits.

  13. The Ethics of Synthetic Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Andreas

    The dissertation analyses and discusses a number of ethical issues that have been raised in connection with the development of synthetic biology. Synthetic biology is a set of new techniques for DNA-level design and construction of living beings with useful properties. The dissertation especially...

  14. Synthetic biology of polyketide synthases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yuzawa, Satoshi; Backman, Tyler W.H.; Keasling, Jay D.


    ). The modules are composed of enzymatic domains that share sequence and functional similarity across all known PKSs. We have used the nomenclature of synthetic biology to classify the enzymatic domains and modules as parts and devices, respectively, and have generated detailed lists of both. In addition, we...... realize the potential that synthetic biology approaches bring to this class of molecules....

  15. Optical studies of high quality synthetic diamond

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sharp, S.J.


    This thesis is concerned with the study of fundamental and defect induced optical properties of synthetic diamond grown using high pressure, high temperature (HPHT) synthesis or chemical vapour deposition (CVD). The primary technique used for investigation is cathodoluminescence (including imaging and decay-time measurements) in addition to other forms of optical spectroscopy. This thesis is timely in that the crystallinity and purity of synthetic diamond has increased ten fold over the last few years. The diamond exciton emission, which is easily quenched by the presence of defects, is studied in high quality samples in detail. In addition the ability now exists to engineer the isotopic content of synthetic diamond to a high degree of accuracy. The experimental chapters are divided as follows: Chapter 2: High resolution, low temperature spectra reveal a splitting of the free-exciton phonon recombination emission peaks and the bound-exciton zero phonon line. Included are measurements of the variation in intensity and decay-time as a function of temperature. Chapter 3: The shift in energy of the phonon-assisted free-exciton phonon replicas with isotopic content has been measured. The shift is in agreement with the results of interatomic force model for phonon scattering due to isotope disorder. Chapter 4: A study of the shift in energy with isotopic content of the diamond of the GR1 band due to the neutral vacancy has allowed a verification of the theoretical predictions due to the Jahn Teller effect. Chapter 5: The spatial distribution of the free-exciton luminescence is studied in HPHT synthetic and CVD diamond. A variation in intensity with distance from the surface is interpreted as a significant non-radiative loss of excitons to the surface. Chapter 6: The decay-times of all known self-interstitial related centres have been measured in order to calculate the concentration of these centres present in electron irradiated diamond. (author)

  16. Sarcocystis neurona infection in gamma interferon gene knockout (KO) mice: comparative infectivity of sporocysts in two strains of KO mice, effect of trypsin digestion on merozoite viability, and infectivity of bradyzoites to KO mice and cell culture. (United States)

    Dubey, J P; Sundar, N; Kwok, O C H; Saville, W J A


    The protozoan Sarcocystis neurona is the primary cause of Equine Protozoal Myeloencephalitis (EPM). EPM or EPM-like illness has been reported in horses, sea otters, and several other mammals. The gamma interferon gene knockout (KO) mouse is often used as a model to study biology and discovery of new therapies against S. neurona because it is difficult to induce clinical EPM in other hosts, including horses. In the present study, infectivity of three life cycle stages (merozoites, bradyzoites, sporozoites) to KO mice and cell culture was studied. Two strains of KO mice (C57-black, and BALB/c-derived, referred here as black or white) were inoculated orally graded doses of S. neurona sporocysts; 12 sporocysts were infective to both strains of mice and all infected mice died or became ill within 70 days post-inoculation. Although there was no difference in infectivity of sporocysts to the two strains of KO mice, the disease was more severe in black mice. S. neurona bradyzoites were not infectious to KO mice and cell culture. S. neurona merozoites survived 120 min incubation in 0.25% trypsin, indicating that trypsin digestion can be used to recover S. neurona from tissues of acutely infected animals. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  17. Computing with synthetic protocells. (United States)

    Courbet, Alexis; Molina, Franck; Amar, Patrick


    In this article we present a new kind of computing device that uses biochemical reactions networks as building blocks to implement logic gates. The architecture of a computing machine relies on these generic and composable building blocks, computation units, that can be used in multiple instances to perform complex boolean functions. Standard logical operations are implemented by biochemical networks, encapsulated and insulated within synthetic vesicles called protocells. These protocells are capable of exchanging energy and information with each other through transmembrane electron transfer. In the paradigm of computation we propose, protoputing, a machine can solve only one problem and therefore has to be built specifically. Thus, the programming phase in the standard computing paradigm is represented in our approach by the set of assembly instructions (specific attachments) that directs the wiring of the protocells that constitute the machine itself. To demonstrate the computing power of protocellular machines, we apply it to solve a NP-complete problem, known to be very demanding in computing power, the 3-SAT problem. We show how to program the assembly of a machine that can verify the satisfiability of a given boolean formula. Then we show how to use the massive parallelism of these machines to verify in less than 20 min all the valuations of the input variables and output a fluorescent signal when the formula is satisfiable or no signal at all otherwise.

  18. Synthetic Biology and Personalized Medicine (United States)

    Jain, K.K.


    Synthetic biology, application of synthetic chemistry to biology, is a broad term that covers the engineering of biological systems with structures and functions not found in nature to process information, manipulate chemicals, produce energy, maintain cell environment and enhance human health. Synthetic biology devices contribute not only to improve our understanding of disease mechanisms, but also provide novel diagnostic tools. Methods based on synthetic biology enable the design of novel strategies for the treatment of cancer, immune diseases metabolic disorders and infectious diseases as well as the production of cheap drugs. The potential of synthetic genome, using an expanded genetic code that is designed for specific drug synthesis as well as delivery and activation of the drug in vivo by a pathological signal, was already pointed out during a lecture delivered at Kuwait University in 2005. Of two approaches to synthetic biology, top-down and bottom-up, the latter is more relevant to the development of personalized medicines as it provides more flexibility in constructing a partially synthetic cell from basic building blocks for a desired task. PMID:22907209

  19. Synthetic Biology: Advancing Biological Frontiers by Building Synthetic Systems


    Chen, Yvonne Yu-Hsuan; Galloway, Kate E; Smolke, Christina D


    Advances in synthetic biology are contributing to diverse research areas, from basic biology to biomanufacturing and disease therapy. We discuss the theoretical foundation, applications, and potential of this emerging field.


    Synthetic musk compounds are consumer chemicals manufactured as fragrance materials Due to their high worldwide usage and release, they frequently occur in the aquatic and marine environments. The U.S. EPA (ORD, Las Vegas) developed surface-water monitoring methodology and conducted a one-year monthly monitoring of synthetic musks in water and biota from Lake Mead (Nevada) as well as from combined sewage effluent streams feeding Lake Mead. Presented are the overview of the chemistry, the monitoring methodology, and the significance of synthetic musk compounds in the aquatic environment. The research focused on in the subtasks is the development and application of state-of the-art technologies to meet the needs of the public, Office of Water, and ORD in the area of Water Quality. Located In the subtasks are the various research projects being performed in support of this Task and more in-depth coverage of each project. Briefly, each project's objective is stated below.Subtask 1: To integrate state-of-the-art technologies (polar organic chemical integrative samplers, advanced solid-phase extraction methodologies with liquid chromatography/electrospray/mass spectrometry) and apply them to studying the sources and fate of a select list of PPCPs. Application and improvement of analytical methodologies that can detect non-volatile, polar, water-soluble pharmaceuticals in source waters at levels that could be environmentally significant (at concentrations less than p

  1. Approaches to chemical synthetic biology. (United States)

    Chiarabelli, Cristiano; Stano, Pasquale; Anella, Fabrizio; Carrara, Paolo; Luisi, Pier Luigi


    Synthetic biology is first represented in terms of two complementary aspects, the bio-engineering one, based on the genetic manipulation of extant microbial forms in order to obtain forms of life which do not exist in nature; and the chemical synthetic biology, an approach mostly based on chemical manipulation for the laboratory synthesis of biological structures that do not exist in nature. The paper is mostly devoted to shortly review chemical synthetic biology projects currently carried out in our laboratory. In particular, we describe: the minimal cell project, then the "Never Born Proteins" and lastly the Never Born RNAs. We describe and critically analyze the main results, emphasizing the possible relevance of chemical synthetic biology for the progress in basic science and biotechnology. Copyright © 2012 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Synthetic Biology for Specialty Chemicals. (United States)

    Markham, Kelly A; Alper, Hal S


    In this review, we address recent advances in the field of synthetic biology and describe how those tools have been applied to produce a wide variety of chemicals in microorganisms. Here we classify the expansion of the synthetic biology toolbox into three different categories based on their primary function in strain engineering-for design, for construction, and for optimization. Next, focusing on recent years, we look at how chemicals have been produced using these new synthetic biology tools. Advances in producing fuels are briefly described, followed by a more thorough treatment of commodity chemicals, specialty chemicals, pharmaceuticals, and nutraceuticals. Throughout this review, an emphasis is placed on how synthetic biology tools are applied to strain engineering. Finally, we discuss organism and host strain diversity and provide a future outlook in the field.

  3. Is synthetic biology mechanical biology? (United States)

    Holm, Sune


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

  4. Adaptive Synthetic Forces: Situation Awareness

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Hill, Randall


    ...: perception, comprehension, and prediction. Building on these ideas, we developed techniques for improving the situation awareness in synthetic helicopter pilots for the ModSAF military simulation by giving them more human-like perception...

  5. Programming languages for synthetic biology. (United States)

    Umesh, P; Naveen, F; Rao, Chanchala Uma Maheswara; Nair, Achuthsankar S


    In the backdrop of accelerated efforts for creating synthetic organisms, the nature and scope of an ideal programming language for scripting synthetic organism in-silico has been receiving increasing attention. A few programming languages for synthetic biology capable of defining, constructing, networking, editing and delivering genome scale models of cellular processes have been recently attempted. All these represent important points in a spectrum of possibilities. This paper introduces Kera, a state of the art programming language for synthetic biology which is arguably ahead of similar languages or tools such as GEC, Antimony and GenoCAD. Kera is a full-fledged object oriented programming language which is tempered by biopart rule library named Samhita which captures the knowledge regarding the interaction of genome components and catalytic molecules. Prominent feature of the language are demonstrated through a toy example and the road map for the future development of Kera is also presented.

  6. Synthetic Control of Exciton Behavior in Colloidal Quantum Dots. (United States)

    Pu, Chaodan; Qin, Haiyan; Gao, Yuan; Zhou, Jianhai; Wang, Peng; Peng, Xiaogang


    Colloidal quantum dots are promising optical and optoelectronic materials for various applications, whose performance is dominated by their excited-state properties. This article illustrates synthetic control of their excited states. Description of the excited states of quantum-dot emitters can be centered around exciton. We shall discuss that, different from conventional molecular emitters, ground-state structures of quantum dots are not necessarily correlated with their excited states. Synthetic control of exciton behavior heavily relies on convenient and affordable monitoring tools. For synthetic development of ideal optical and optoelectronic emitters, the key process is decay of band-edge excitons, which renders transient photoluminescence as important monitoring tool. On the basis of extensive synthetic developments in the past 20-30 years, synthetic control of exciton behavior implies surface engineering of quantum dots, including surface cation/anion stoichiometry, organic ligands, inorganic epitaxial shells, etc. For phosphors based on quantum dots doped with transition metal ions, concentration and location of the dopant ions within a nanocrystal lattice are found to be as important as control of the surface states in order to obtain bright dopant emission with monoexponential yet tunable photoluminescence decay dynamics.

  7. Freedom and Responsibility in Synthetic Genomics: The Synthetic Yeast Project. (United States)

    Sliva, Anna; Yang, Huanming; Boeke, Jef D; Mathews, Debra J H


    First introduced in 2011, the Synthetic Yeast Genome (Sc2.0) PROJECT is a large international synthetic genomics project that will culminate in the first eukaryotic cell (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) with a fully synthetic genome. With collaborators from across the globe and from a range of institutions spanning from do-it-yourself biology (DIYbio) to commercial enterprises, it is important that all scientists working on this project are cognizant of the ethical and policy issues associated with this field of research and operate under a common set of principles. In this commentary, we survey the current ethics and regulatory landscape of synthetic biology and present the Sc2.0 Statement of Ethics and Governance to which all members of the project adhere. This statement focuses on four aspects of the Sc2.0 PROJECT: societal benefit, intellectual property, safety, and self-governance. We propose that such project-level agreements are an important, valuable, and flexible model of self-regulation for similar global, large-scale synthetic biology projects in order to maximize the benefits and minimize potential harms. Copyright © 2015 by the Genetics Society of America.

  8. Meeting Report: Synthetic Biology Jamboree for Undergraduates (United States)

    Campbell, A. Malcolm


    The field of synthetic biology (the name is derived from an analogy to synthetic chemistry) has recognized itself as a "field" only since about 2002. Synthetic biology has gotten some high-profile attention recently, but most people are not aware the field even exists. Synthetic biologists apply engineering principles to genomic circuits to…

  9. Synthetic biology, metaphors and responsibility. (United States)

    McLeod, Carmen; Nerlich, Brigitte


    Metaphors are not just decorative rhetorical devices that make speech pretty. They are fundamental tools for thinking about the world and acting on the world. The language we use to make a better world matters; words matter; metaphors matter. Words have consequences - ethical, social and legal ones, as well as political and economic ones. They need to be used 'responsibly'. They also need to be studied carefully - this is what we want to do through this editorial and the related thematic collection. In the context of synthetic biology, natural and social scientists have become increasingly interested in metaphors, a wave of interest that we want to exploit and amplify. We want to build on emerging articles and books on synthetic biology, metaphors of life and the ethical and moral implications of such metaphors. This editorial provides a brief introduction to synthetic biology and responsible innovation, as well as a comprehensive review of literature on the social, cultural and ethical impacts of metaphor use in genomics and synthetic biology. Our aim is to stimulate an interdisciplinary and international discussion on the impact that metaphors can have on science, policy and publics in the context of synthetic biology.

  10. Content metamorphosis in synthetic holography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Desbiens, Jacques


    A synthetic hologram is an optical system made of hundreds of images amalgamated in a structure of holographic cells. Each of these images represents a point of view on a three-dimensional space which makes us consider synthetic holography as a multiple points of view perspective system. In the composition of a computer graphics scene for a synthetic hologram, the field of view of the holographic image can be divided into several viewing zones. We can attribute these divisions to any object or image feature independently and operate different transformations on image content. In computer generated holography, we tend to consider content variations as a continuous animation much like a short movie. However, by composing sequential variations of image features in relation with spatial divisions, we can build new narrative forms distinct from linear cinematographic narration. When observers move freely and change their viewing positions, they travel from one field of view division to another. In synthetic holography, metamorphoses of image content are within the observer's path. In all imaging Medias, the transformation of image features in synchronisation with the observer's position is a rare occurrence. However, this is a predominant characteristic of synthetic holography. This paper describes some of my experimental works in the development of metamorphic holographic images.

  11. Control theory meets synthetic biology. (United States)

    Del Vecchio, Domitilla; Dy, Aaron J; Qian, Yili


    The past several years have witnessed an increased presence of control theoretic concepts in synthetic biology. This review presents an organized summary of how these control design concepts have been applied to tackle a variety of problems faced when building synthetic biomolecular circuits in living cells. In particular, we describe success stories that demonstrate how simple or more elaborate control design methods can be used to make the behaviour of synthetic genetic circuits within a single cell or across a cell population more reliable, predictable and robust to perturbations. The description especially highlights technical challenges that uniquely arise from the need to implement control designs within a new hardware setting, along with implemented or proposed solutions. Some engineering solutions employing complex feedback control schemes are also described, which, however, still require a deeper theoretical analysis of stability, performance and robustness properties. Overall, this paper should help synthetic biologists become familiar with feedback control concepts as they can be used in their application area. At the same time, it should provide some domain knowledge to control theorists who wish to enter the rising and exciting field of synthetic biology. © 2016 The Author(s).

  12. Adsorption of polar aromatic hydrocarbons on synthetic calcite

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, Lene; Grahl-Madsen, Laila; Grøn, Christian


    The wettability of hydrocarbon reservoirs depends on how and to what extent the organic compounds are adsorbed onto the surfaces of calcite, quartz and clay. A model system of synthetic call cite, cyclohexane and the three probe molecules: benzoic acid, benzyl alcohol and benzylamine, have been...


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Pylypchuk


    Full Text Available It was shown by X-ray phase analysis, IR spectra analysis and MALDI-ToF mass spectrometry methods that interaction of synthetic hydroxyapatite with a solution of immunoglobulin G leads to its partial dissolution due to leaching from the surface of calcium triphosphate which, in our opinion, forms complexes with immunoglobulin G.

  14. Labeling surface epitopes to identify Cryptosporidium life stages using a scanning electron microscopy-based immunogold approach. (United States)

    Edwards, Hanna; Thompson, R C Andrew; Koh, Wan H; Clode, Peta L


    The Apicomplexan parasite Cryptosporidium parvum is responsible for the widespread disease cryptosporidiosis, in both humans and livestock. The nature of C. parvum infection is far from understood and many questions remain in regard to host-parasite interactions, limiting successful treatment of the disease. To definitively identify a range of C. parvum stages in cell culture and to begin to investigate host cell interactions in some of the lesser known life stages, we have utilized a combined scanning electron microscopy and immunolabeling approach, correlating high resolution microstructural information with definitive immunogold labeling of Cryptosporidium stages. Several life cycle stages, including oocysts, merozoites I, trophozoites, gamonts and microgametocytes, were successfully immunolabeled in an in vitro model system. Developing oocysts were clearly immunolabeled, but this did not persist once excystation had occurred. Immunolabeling visualized on the host cell surface adjacent to invasive merozoites is likely to be indicative of receptor shedding, with merozoites also initiating host responses that manifested as abnormal microvilli on the host cell surface. Small sub-micron stages such as microgametocytes, which were impossible to identify as single entities without immunolabeling, were readily visualized and observed to attach to host cells via novel membranous projections. Epicellular parasites also expressed Cryptosporidium-derived epitopes within their encapsulating membrane. These data have allowed us to confidently identify a variety of C. parvum stages in cell culture at high resolution. With this, we provide new insight into C. parvum - host cell interactions and highlight future opportunities for investigating and targeting receptor-mediated interactions between Cryptosporidium life cycle stages and host cells. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Microfluidic Technologies for Synthetic Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sung Kuk Lee


    Full Text Available Microfluidic technologies have shown powerful abilities for reducing cost, time, and labor, and at the same time, for increasing accuracy, throughput, and performance in the analysis of biological and biochemical samples compared with the conventional, macroscale instruments. Synthetic biology is an emerging field of biology and has drawn much attraction due to its potential to create novel, functional biological parts and systems for special purposes. Since it is believed that the development of synthetic biology can be accelerated through the use of microfluidic technology, in this review work we focus our discussion on the latest microfluidic technologies that can provide unprecedented means in synthetic biology for dynamic profiling of gene expression/regulation with high resolution, highly sensitive on-chip and off-chip detection of metabolites, and whole-cell analysis.

  16. Synthetic neurosteroids on brain protection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariana Rey


    Full Text Available Neurosteroids, like allopregnanolone and pregnanolone, are endogenous regulators of neuronal excitability. Inside the brain, they are highly selective and potent modulators of GABA A receptor activity. Their anticonvulsant, anesthetics and anxiolytic properties are useful for the treatments of several neurological and psychiatric disorders via reducing the risks of side effects obtained with the commercial drugs. The principal disadvantages of endogenous neurosteroids administration are their rapid metabolism and their low oral bioavailability. Synthetic steroids analogues with major stability or endogenous neurosteroids stimulation synthesis might constitute promising novel strategies for the treatment of several disorders. Numerous studies indicate that the 3α-hydroxyl configuration is the key for binding and activity, but modifications in the steroid nucleus may emphasize different pharmacophores. So far, several synthetic steroids have been developed with successful neurosteroid-like effects. In this work, we summarize the properties of various synthetic steroids probed in trials throughout the analysis of several neurosteroids-like actions.

  17. Synthetic biology as red herring. (United States)

    Preston, Beth


    It has become commonplace to say that with the advent of technologies like synthetic biology the line between artifacts and living organisms, policed by metaphysicians since antiquity, is beginning to blur. But that line began to blur 10,000 years ago when plants and animals were first domesticated; and has been thoroughly blurred at least since agriculture became the dominant human subsistence pattern many millennia ago. Synthetic biology is ultimately only a late and unexceptional offshoot of this prehistoric development. From this perspective, then, synthetic biology is a red herring, distracting us from more thorough philosophical consideration of the most truly revolutionary human practice-agriculture. In the first section of this paper I will make this case with regard to ontology, arguing that synthetic biology crosses no ontological lines that were not crossed already in the Neolithic. In the second section I will construct a parallel case with regard to cognition, arguing that synthetic biology as biological engineering represents no cognitive advance over what was required for domestication and the new agricultural subsistence pattern it grounds. In the final section I will make the case with regard to human existence, arguing that synthetic biology, even if wildly successful, is not in a position to cause significant existential change in what it is to be human over and above the massive existential change caused by the transition to agriculture. I conclude that a longer historical perspective casts new light on some important issues in philosophy of technology and environmental philosophy. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. US Competitiveness in Synthetic Biology. (United States)

    Gronvall, Gigi Kwik


    Synthetic biology is an emerging technical field that aims to make biology easier to engineer; the field has applications in strategically important sectors for the US economy. While the United States currently leads in synthetic biology R&D, other nations are heavily investing in order to boost their economies, which will inevitably diminish the US leadership position. This outcome is not entirely negative--additional investments will expand markets--but it is critical that the US government take steps to remain competitive: There are applications from which the US population and economy may benefit; there are specific applications with importance for national defense; and US technical leadership will ensure that US experts have a leading role in synthetic biology governance, regulation, and oversight. Measures to increase competitiveness in S&T generally are broadly applicable for synthetic biology and should be pursued. However, the US government will also need to take action on fundamental issues that will affect the field's development, such as countering anti-GMO (genetically modified organism) sentiments and anti-GMO legislation. The United States should maintain its regulatory approach so that it is the product that is regulated, not the method used to create a product. At the same time, the United States needs to ensure that the regulatory framework is updated so that synthetic biology products do not fall into regulatory gaps. Finally, the United States needs to pay close attention to how synthetic biology applications may be governed internationally, such as through the Nagoya Protocol of the Convention on Biological Diversity, so that beneficial applications may be realized.

  19. Synthetic Phage for Tissue Regeneration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    So Young Yoo


    Full Text Available Controlling structural organization and signaling motif display is of great importance to design the functional tissue regenerating materials. Synthetic phage, genetically engineered M13 bacteriophage has been recently introduced as novel tissue regeneration materials to display a high density of cell-signaling peptides on their major coat proteins for tissue regeneration purposes. Structural advantages of their long-rod shape and monodispersity can be taken together to construct nanofibrous scaffolds which support cell proliferation and differentiation as well as direct orientation of their growth in two or three dimensions. This review demonstrated how functional synthetic phage is designed and subsequently utilized for tissue regeneration that offers potential cell therapy.

  20. Synthetic biology and its promises

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José Manuel De Cózar Escalante


    Full Text Available Synthetic biology is a new science and emerging technology, or rather a technoscience, which converges with others such as nanotechnology, information technology, robotics, artificial intelligence and neuroscience. All have common features that could have highly concerning social and environmental impacts. With its ambitious goals of controlling complexity, redesigning and creating new living entities, synthetic biology perfectly exemplifies the new bioeconomic reality. This requires expanding the focus of the discussion beyond the limited comparative analysis of risks and benefits, to address uncertainties, reassign responsibilities and initiate a thorough social assessment of what is at stake.

  1. Processes for coating or sealing electronic components with synthetic varnishes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Farrugia, M.; Allard, M.


    A method of coating or sealing electrical or electronic components with a synthetic resin composition is described which consists of moving each component along a fixed path through a coating station at which at least one surface of the component receives a coating of synthetic resin and then moving each component through a beam of ionising radiation (ultra-violet or beta radiation) for a sufficient time to induce polymerisation of the resin. Suitable resin compositions for the process are listed. (U.K.)

  2. Where Synthetic Biology Meets ET (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.


    Synthetic biology - the design and construction of new biological parts and systems and the redesign of existing ones for useful purposes - has the potential to transform fields from pharmaceuticals to fuels. Our lab has focused on the potential of synthetic biology to revolutionize all three major parts of astrobiology: Where do we come from? Where are we going? and Are we alone? For the first and third, synthetic biology is allowing us to answer whether the evolutionary narrative that has played out on planet earth is likely to have been unique or universal. For example, in our lab we are re-evolving the biosynthetic pathways of amino acids in order to understand potential capabilities of an early organism with a limited repertoire of amino acids and developing techniques for the recovery of metals from spent electronics on other planetary bodies. And what about the limits for life? Can we create organisms that expand the envelope for life? In the future synthetic biology will play an increasing role in human activities both on earth, in fields as diverse as human health and the industrial production of novel bio-composites. Beyond earth, we will rely increasingly on biologically-provided life support, as we have throughout our evolutionary history. In order to do this, the field will build on two of the great contributions of astrobiology: studies of the origin of life and life in extreme environments.

  3. Stereoscopy in cinematographic synthetic imagery (United States)

    Eisenmann, Jonathan; Parent, Rick


    In this paper we present experiments and results pertaining to the perception of depth in stereoscopic viewing of synthetic imagery. In computer animation, typical synthetic imagery is highly textured and uses stylized illumination of abstracted material models by abstracted light source models. While there have been numerous studies concerning stereoscopic capabilities, conventions for staging and cinematography in stereoscopic movies have not yet been well-established. Our long-term goal is to measure the effectiveness of various cinematography techniques on the human visual system in a theatrical viewing environment. We would like to identify the elements of stereoscopic cinema that are important in terms of enhancing the viewer's understanding of a scene as well as providing guidelines for the cinematographer relating to storytelling. In these experiments we isolated stereoscopic effects by eliminating as many other visual cues as is reasonable. In particular, we aim to empirically determine what types of movement in synthetic imagery affect the perceptual depth sensing capabilities of our viewers. Using synthetic imagery, we created several viewing scenarios in which the viewer is asked to locate a target object's depth in a simple environment. The scenarios were specifically designed to compare the effectiveness of stereo viewing, camera movement, and object motion in aiding depth perception. Data were collected showing the error between the choice of the user and the actual depth value, and patterns were identified that relate the test variables to the viewer's perceptual depth accuracy in our theatrical viewing environment.

  4. Synthetic biology meets tissue engineering. (United States)

    Davies, Jamie A; Cachat, Elise


    Classical tissue engineering is aimed mainly at producing anatomically and physiologically realistic replacements for normal human tissues. It is done either by encouraging cellular colonization of manufactured matrices or cellular recolonization of decellularized natural extracellular matrices from donor organs, or by allowing cells to self-organize into organs as they do during fetal life. For repair of normal bodies, this will be adequate but there are reasons for making unusual, non-evolved tissues (repair of unusual bodies, interface to electromechanical prostheses, incorporating living cells into life-support machines). Synthetic biology is aimed mainly at engineering cells so that they can perform custom functions: applying synthetic biological approaches to tissue engineering may be one way of engineering custom structures. In this article, we outline the 'embryological cycle' of patterning, differentiation and morphogenesis and review progress that has been made in constructing synthetic biological systems to reproduce these processes in new ways. The state-of-the-art remains a long way from making truly synthetic tissues, but there are now at least foundations for future work. © 2016 Authors; published by Portland Press Limited.

  5. Assessment of synthetic image fidelity (United States)

    Mitchell, Kevin D.; Moorhead, Ian R.; Gilmore, Marilyn A.; Watson, Graham H.; Thomson, Mitch; Yates, T.; Troscianko, Tomasz; Tolhurst, David J.


    Computer generated imagery is increasingly used for a wide variety of purposes ranging from computer games to flight simulators to camouflage and sensor assessment. The fidelity required for this imagery is dependent on the anticipated use - for example when used for camouflage design it must be physically correct spectrally and spatially. The rendering techniques used will also depend upon the waveband being simulated, spatial resolution of the sensor and the required frame rate. Rendering of natural outdoor scenes is particularly demanding, because of the statistical variation in materials and illumination, atmospheric effects and the complex geometric structures of objects such as trees. The accuracy of the simulated imagery has tended to be assessed subjectively in the past. First and second order statistics do not capture many of the essential characteristics of natural scenes. Direct pixel comparison would impose an unachievable demand on the synthetic imagery. For many applications, such as camouflage design, it is important that nay metrics used will work in both visible and infrared wavebands. We are investigating a variety of different methods of comparing real and synthetic imagery and comparing synthetic imagery rendered to different levels of fidelity. These techniques will include neural networks (ICA), higher order statistics and models of human contrast perception. This paper will present an overview of the analyses we have carried out and some initial results along with some preliminary conclusions regarding the fidelity of synthetic imagery.

  6. Methods for preparing synthetic freshwaters. (United States)

    Smith, E J; Davison, W; Hamilton-Taylor, J


    Synthetic solutions that emulate the major ion compositions of natural waters are useful in experiments aimed at understanding biogeochemical processes. Standard recipes exist for preparing synthetic analogues of seawater, with its relatively constant composition, but, due to the diversity of freshwaters, a range of compositions and recipes is required. Generic protocols are developed for preparing synthetic freshwaters of any desired composition. The major problems encountered in preparing hard and soft waters include dissolving sparingly soluble calcium carbonate, ensuring that the ionic components of each concentrated stock solution cannot form an insoluble salt and dealing with the supersaturation of calcium carbonate in many hard waters. For acidic waters the poor solubility of aluminium salts requires attention. These problems are overcome by preparing concentrated stock solutions according to carefully designed reaction paths that were tested using a combination of experiment and equilibrium modeling. These stock solutions must then be added in a prescribed order to prepare a final solution that is brought into equilibrium with the atmosphere. The example calculations for preparing hard, soft and acidic freshwater surrogates with major ion compositions the same as published analyses, are presented in a generalized fashion that should allow preparation of any synthetic freshwater according to its known analysis.

  7. Protease-sensitive synthetic prions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David W Colby


    Full Text Available Prions arise when the cellular prion protein (PrP(C undergoes a self-propagating conformational change; the resulting infectious conformer is designated PrP(Sc. Frequently, PrP(Sc is protease-resistant but protease-sensitive (s prions have been isolated in humans and other animals. We report here that protease-sensitive, synthetic prions were generated in vitro during polymerization of recombinant (rec PrP into amyloid fibers. In 22 independent experiments, recPrP amyloid preparations, but not recPrP monomers or oligomers, transmitted disease to transgenic mice (n = 164, denoted Tg9949 mice, that overexpress N-terminally truncated PrP. Tg9949 control mice (n = 174 did not spontaneously generate prions although they were prone to late-onset spontaneous neurological dysfunction. When synthetic prion isolates from infected Tg9949 mice were serially transmitted in the same line of mice, they exhibited sPrP(Sc and caused neurodegeneration. Interestingly, these protease-sensitive prions did not shorten the life span of Tg9949 mice despite causing extensive neurodegeneration. We inoculated three synthetic prion isolates into Tg4053 mice that overexpress full-length PrP; Tg4053 mice are not prone to developing spontaneous neurological dysfunction. The synthetic prion isolates caused disease in 600-750 days in Tg4053 mice, which exhibited sPrP(Sc. These novel synthetic prions demonstrate that conformational changes in wild-type PrP can produce mouse prions composed exclusively of sPrP(Sc.

  8. Enhancing Water Evaporation with Floating Synthetic Leaves (United States)

    Boreyko, Jonathan; Vieitez, Joshua; Berrier, Austin; Roseveare, Matthew; Shi, Weiwei


    When a wetted nanoporous medium is exposed to a subsaturated ambient environment, the water menisci assume a concave curvature to achieve a negative pressure. This negative water pressure is required to balance the mismatch in water activity across the water-air interface to achieve local equilibrium. Here, we show that the diffusive evaporation rate of water can be greatly modulated by floating a nanoporous synthetic leaf at the water's free interface. For high ambient humidities, adding the leaf serves to enhance the evaporation rate, presumably by virtue of the menisci enhancing the effective liquid-vapor surface area. For low humidities, the menisci cannot achieve a local equilibrium and retreat partway into the leaf, which increases the local humidity directly above the menisci. In light of these two effects, we find the surprising result that leaves exposed to an ambient humidity of 90 percent can evaporate water at the same rate as leaves exposed to only 50 percent humidity. These findings have implications for using synthetic trees to enhance steam generation or water harvesting. This work was supported by the National Science Foundation (CBET-1653631).

  9. Synthetic vision and memory model for virtual human - biomed 2010. (United States)

    Zhao, Yue; Kang, Jinsheng; Wright, David


    This paper describes the methods and case studies of a novel synthetic vision and memory model for virtual human. The synthetic vision module simulates the biological / optical abilities and limitations of the human vision. The module is based on a series of collision detection between the boundary of virtual humans field of vision (FOV) volume and the surface of objects in a recreated 3D environment. The memory module simulates a short-term memory capability by employing a simplified memory structure (first-in-first-out stack). The synthetic vision and memory model has been integrated into a virtual human modelling project, Intelligent Virtual Modelling. The project aimed to improve the realism and autonomy of virtual humans.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Denning, Denise; Roos, Wouter H


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

  11. Adsorption of hydrogen sulfide gas on several synthetic zeolites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fukui, T; Ise, Y; Boki, K; Tanada, S


    Ten kinds of synthetic zeolites were tested to determine the most suitable adsorbent for H/sub 2/S gas removal by a dry process. Specific surface area with argon gas and H/sub 2/S gas, surface pH, and thermodynamic data of adsorbents were measured. The amounts of H/sub 2/S gas adsorbed on synthetic zeolite adsorbents were affected in terms of the pore sizes of the adsorbents rather than the surface pH and the thermodynamic factors. The adsorbents No. 3, No. 7, and No. 8 showed higher adsorption of H/sub 2/S than the other adsorbents and were the most suitable for practical purposes.

  12. Thermal and structural characterization of synthetic and natural nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sofronia, Ancuta M.; Baies, Radu; Anghel, Elena M.; Marinescu, Cornelia A.; Tanasescu, Speranta


    The aim of this work was to study the thermal stability on heating and to obtain the processing parameters of synthetic and bone-derived hydroxyapatite over temperatures between room temperature and 1400 °C by thermal analysis (thermogravimetry (TG)/differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and thermo-mechanical analysis—TMA). Structural and surface modifications related to samples origin and calcination temperature were investigated by Fourier transformed infrared (FTIR) and Raman spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD) and BET method. FTIR spectra indicated that the organic constituents and carbonate are no longer present in the natural sample calcined at 800 °C. Raman spectra highlighted the decomposition products of the hydroxyapatite. The calcination treatment modifies the processes kinetics of the synthetic samples, being able to isolate lattice water desorption processes of decarbonization and the dehydroxylation processes. Shrinkage of calcined synthetic sample increases by 10% compared to uncalcined synthetic powder. From the TMA correlated with TG analysis and heat capacity data it can be concluded that sintering temperature of the synthetic samples should be chosen in the temperature range of the onset of dehydroxylation and the temperature at which oxyapatite decomposition begins. - Highlights: • Specific surface area of HA powder was reduced from 19.2 to 9.5 m 2 /g by calcination. • Raman spectra indicate the presence of B-type CO 3 group in HA synthetic samples. • The onset temperature of HA densification and dehydroxylation processes correspond. • Calcination of HA influences reactions kinetics with consequences on densification. • Shrinkage of calcined HA sample increases by 10% with respect to uncalcined sample

  13. Thermal and structural characterization of synthetic and natural nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sofronia, Ancuta M. [Ilie Murgulescu Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Romanian Academy, 060021 Bucharest (Romania); Baies, Radu [National Research Institute for Electrochemistry and Condensed Matter, 300224 Timisoara (Romania); Anghel, Elena M. [Ilie Murgulescu Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Romanian Academy, 060021 Bucharest (Romania); Marinescu, Cornelia A., E-mail: [Ilie Murgulescu Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Romanian Academy, 060021 Bucharest (Romania); Tanasescu, Speranta [Ilie Murgulescu Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Romanian Academy, 060021 Bucharest (Romania)


    The aim of this work was to study the thermal stability on heating and to obtain the processing parameters of synthetic and bone-derived hydroxyapatite over temperatures between room temperature and 1400 °C by thermal analysis (thermogravimetry (TG)/differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and thermo-mechanical analysis—TMA). Structural and surface modifications related to samples origin and calcination temperature were investigated by Fourier transformed infrared (FTIR) and Raman spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD) and BET method. FTIR spectra indicated that the organic constituents and carbonate are no longer present in the natural sample calcined at 800 °C. Raman spectra highlighted the decomposition products of the hydroxyapatite. The calcination treatment modifies the processes kinetics of the synthetic samples, being able to isolate lattice water desorption processes of decarbonization and the dehydroxylation processes. Shrinkage of calcined synthetic sample increases by 10% compared to uncalcined synthetic powder. From the TMA correlated with TG analysis and heat capacity data it can be concluded that sintering temperature of the synthetic samples should be chosen in the temperature range of the onset of dehydroxylation and the temperature at which oxyapatite decomposition begins. - Highlights: • Specific surface area of HA powder was reduced from 19.2 to 9.5 m{sup 2}/g by calcination. • Raman spectra indicate the presence of B-type CO{sub 3} group in HA synthetic samples. • The onset temperature of HA densification and dehydroxylation processes correspond. • Calcination of HA influences reactions kinetics with consequences on densification. • Shrinkage of calcined HA sample increases by 10% with respect to uncalcined sample.

  14. Thermal and structural characterization of synthetic and natural nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite. (United States)

    Sofronia, Ancuta M; Baies, Radu; Anghel, Elena M; Marinescu, Cornelia A; Tanasescu, Speranta


    The aim of this work was to study the thermal stability on heating and to obtain the processing parameters of synthetic and bone-derived hydroxyapatite over temperatures between room temperature and 1400°C by thermal analysis (thermogravimetry (TG)/differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and thermo-mechanical analysis-TMA). Structural and surface modifications related to samples origin and calcination temperature were investigated by Fourier transformed infrared (FTIR) and Raman spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD) and BET method. FTIR spectra indicated that the organic constituents and carbonate are no longer present in the natural sample calcined at 800°C. Raman spectra highlighted the decomposition products of the hydroxyapatite. The calcination treatment modifies the processes kinetics of the synthetic samples, being able to isolate lattice water desorption processes of decarbonization and the dehydroxylation processes. Shrinkage of calcined synthetic sample increases by 10% compared to uncalcined synthetic powder. From the TMA correlated with TG analysis and heat capacity data it can be concluded that sintering temperature of the synthetic samples should be chosen in the temperature range of the onset of dehydroxylation and the temperature at which oxyapatite decomposition begins. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Biodeterioration of synthetic materials - A brief review

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Flemming, H.C. [Biofilm Centre, University of Duisburg-Essen, Geibelstr. 41, 47057 Duisburg (Germany)


    Although synthetic polymers are part of our global waste problem because they are not sufficiently biologically degraded, microorganisms can severely impair the properties and functions of these materials. It seems as if consumers do not really acknowledge this cause of problems and there is only sparse systematic research about. Damaging mechanisms include (i) covering of surfaces (biofouling) which may be enhanced by leaching of biodegradable additives, (ii) depletion of such additives which can lead to loss of material properties, (iii) intrusion into materials by fungal hyphae, (iv) water uptake, and (v) discoloration. The common countermeasure is the addition of biocides or simply to tolerate the effects of biodeterioration and live on with them. It is suggested to encourage further systematic research, and to develop integrated strategies in order to avoid problems, e.g., based on nutrient and water limitation whenever possible. (Copyright copyright 2010 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH and Co. KGaA, Weinheim)

  16. Synthetic Developments of Nontoxic Quantum Dots. (United States)

    Das, Adita; Snee, Preston T


    Semiconductor nanocrystals, or quantum dots (QDs), are candidates for biological sensing, photovoltaics, and catalysis due to their unique photophysical properties. The most studied QDs are composed of heavy metals like cadmium and lead. However, this engenders concerns over heavy metal toxicity. To address this issue, numerous studies have explored the development of nontoxic (or more accurately less toxic) quantum dots. In this Review, we select three major classes of nontoxic quantum dots composed of carbon, silicon and Group I-III-VI elements and discuss the myriad of synthetic strategies and surface modification methods to synthesize quantum dots composed of these material systems. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  17. Design Automation in Synthetic Biology. (United States)

    Appleton, Evan; Madsen, Curtis; Roehner, Nicholas; Densmore, Douglas


    Design automation refers to a category of software tools for designing systems that work together in a workflow for designing, building, testing, and analyzing systems with a target behavior. In synthetic biology, these tools are called bio-design automation (BDA) tools. In this review, we discuss the BDA tools areas-specify, design, build, test, and learn-and introduce the existing software tools designed to solve problems in these areas. We then detail the functionality of some of these tools and show how they can be used together to create the desired behavior of two types of modern synthetic genetic regulatory networks. Copyright © 2017 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; all rights reserved.

  18. Synthetic biology character and impact

    CERN Document Server

    Pade, Christian; Wigger, Henning; Gleich, Arnim


    Synthetic Biology is already an object of intensive debate. However, to a great extent the discussion to date has been concerned with fundamental ethical, religious and philosophical questions. By contrast, based on an investigation of the field’s scientific and technological character, this book focuses on new functionalities provided by synthetic biology and explores the associated opportunities and risks. Following an introduction to the subject and a discussion of the most central paradigms and methodologies, the book provides an overview of the structure of this field of science and technology. It informs the reader about the current stage of development, as well as topical problems and potential opportunities in important fields of application. But not only the science itself is in focus. In order to investigate its broader impact, ecological as well as ethical implications will be considered, paving the way for a discussion of responsibilities in the context of a field at a transitional crossroads be...

  19. Synthetic greenhouse gases under control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Horisberger, B.; Karlaganis, G.


    This article discusses new Swiss regulations on the use of synthetic materials that posses a considerable greenhouse-warming potential. Synthetic materials such as hydro-chlorofluorocarbons HCFCs, perfluoride-hydrocarbons and sulphur hexafluoride have, in recent years, replaced chlorofluorocarbons CFCs, which were banned on account of their ozone depletion characteristics. The use of these persistent substances is now being limited to applications where more environment-friendly alternatives are not available. The measures decreed in the legislation, which include a general ban on HCFCs as of 2004 and a ban on the export of installations and equipment that use ozone-depleting refrigerants are described. Details on the legislation's effects on the Swiss refrigeration industry are listed and discussed

  20. Synthetic LDL as targeted drug delivery vehicle (United States)

    Forte, Trudy M [Berkeley, CA; Nikanjam, Mina [Richmond, CA


    The present invention provides a synthetic LDL nanoparticle comprising a lipid moiety and a synthetic chimeric peptide so as to be capable of binding the LDL receptor. The synthetic LDL nanoparticle of the present invention is capable of incorporating and targeting therapeutics to cells expressing the LDL receptor for diseases associated with the expression of the LDL receptor such as central nervous system diseases. The invention further provides methods of using such synthetic LDL nanoparticles.

  1. Vibrational spectrum of synthetic carnotite

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baran, E J; Botto, I L [La Plata Univ. Nacional (Argentina). Facultad de Ciencias Exactas


    The infrared and laser-Raman spectra of synthetic carnotite, K/sub 2/((UO/sub 2/)/sub 2/V/sub 2/O/sub 8/), are reported and discussed. Force constants for the terminal V-O bonds as well as for the UO/sub 2//sup 2 +/ ions are evaluated. From the spectroscopic data, a U-O bond length of 1.81 A is estimated for the uranyl ion in this compound.

  2. Designer Drugs: A Synthetic Catastrophe


    Fratantonio, James; Andrade, Lawrence; Febo, Marcelo


    Synthetic stimulants can cause hallucinations, aggressive behaviors, death and are sometimes legal. These substances are sold as plant food and bath salts that are "Not for Human Consumption", therefore skirting the 1986 Federal Analogue Act and giving a false pretense of safety. Studies have proved that these substances are toxic, have a high abuse potential, and are becoming extremely prevalent in the United States. This creates a dilemma for law enforcement agents, hospitals, and substance...

  3. Hydrogen speciation in synthetic quartz (United States)

    Aines, R.D.; Kirby, S.H.; Rossman, G.R.


    The dominant hydrogen impurity in synthetic quartz is molecular H2O. H-OH groups also occur, but there is no direct evidence for the hydrolysis of Si-O-Si bonds to yield Si-OH HO-Si groups. Molecular H2O concentrations in the synthetic quartz crystals studied range from less than 10 to 3,300 ppm (H/Si), and decrease smoothly by up to an order of magnitude with distance away from the seed. OH- concentrations range from 96 to 715 ppm, and rise smoothly with distance away from the seed by up to a factor of three. The observed OH- is probably all associated with cationic impurities, as in natural quartz. Molecular H2O is the dominant initial hydrogen impurity in weak quartz. The hydrolytic weakening of quartz may be caused by the transformation H2O + Si-O-Si ??? 2SiOH, but this may be a transitory change with the SiOH groups recombining to form H2O, and the average SiOH concentration remaining very low. Synthetic quartz is strengthened when the H2O is accumulated into fluid inclusions and cannot react with the quartz framework. ?? 1984 Springer-Verlag.

  4. Characterization of synthetic peptides by mass spectrometry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Prabhala, Bala Krishna; Mirza, Osman Asghar; Højrup, Peter


    Mass spectrometry (MS) is well suited for analysis of the identity and purity of synthetic peptides. The sequence of a synthetic peptide is most often known, so the analysis is mainly used to confirm the identity and purity of the peptide. Here, simple procedures are described for MALDI......-TOF-MS and LC-MS of synthetic peptides....

  5. Bioaccumulation of the synthetic dye Basic Violet 3 and heavy metals in single and binary systems by Candida tropicalis grown in a sugarcane bagasse extract medium: Modelling optimal conditions using response surface methodology (RSM) and inhibition kinetics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Das, Devlina; Charumathi, D.; Das, Nilanjana


    Single and binary effects of dye Basic Violet 3 and heavy metals, 'namely', Pb(II) and Cd(II), were investigated for their role in dye and heavy metal bioaccumulation by Candida tropicalis that was grown in a sugarcane bagasse extract medium containing 8 g/L, 16 g/L or 24 g/L of sugar. The optimum pH was found to be 4.0 in the single system and 5.0 in the binary system. A central composite design was successfully used to analyse the experimental results. Four numerical correlations that were fitted to a second order quadratic equation were used to estimate optimum combinations predicted by response surface methodology. In the dye-Pb(II) binary system, C. tropicalis was capable of bioaccumulating 49.5% of the dye and 49.6% of the Pb(II), in comparison to 15.9% of the dye and 55.5% of the Cd(II) in the dye-Cd(II) binary system. In these two systems, the pollutants were dispersed at minimum working concentration levels. Competitive inhibition was observed in both the single and binary systems, which was suggested by an increase in the saturation constant, K s , and a simultaneous decrease in the specific growth rate that was calculated from Lineweaver-Burk plots. Atomic force microscopy images demonstrated changes in yeast cell morphology by exposure to these contaminants in the dye-Pb(II) binary system grown in a bioaccumulation medium.

  6. A Canadian refiner's perspective of synthetic crudes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Halford, T.L.; McIntosh, A.P.; Rasmussen


    Some of the factors affecting a refiner's choice of crude oil include refinery hardware, particularly gas oil crackers, products slate and product specifications, crude availability, relative crude price and crude quality. An overview of synthetic crude, the use of synthetic crude combined with other crudes and a comparison of synthetic crude with conventional crude oil was given. The two main users of synthetic crude are basically two groups of refiners, those large groups who use synthetic crude combined with other crudes, and a smaller group who run synthetic crude on specially designed units as a sole feed. The effects of changes in fuel legislation were reviewed. It was predicted that the changes will have a mixed impact on the value of synthetic crude, but low sulphur diesel regulations and gasoline sulphur regulations will make current synthetic crudes attractive. The big future change with a negative impact will be diesel cetane increases to reduce engine emissions. This will reduce synthetic crude attractiveness due to distillate yields and quality and high gas oil yields. Similarly, any legislation limiting aromatics in diesel fuel will also make synthetic crudes less attractive. Problems experienced by refiners with hardware dedicated to synthetic crude (salt, naphthenic acid, fouling, quality variations) were also reviewed. 3 tabs

  7. Synthetic biology: Emerging bioengineering in Indonesia (United States)

    Suhandono, Sony


    The development of synthetic biology will shape the new era of science and technology. It is an emerging bioengineering technique involving genetic engineering which can alter the phenotype and behavior of the cell or the new product. Synthetic biology may produce biomaterials, drugs, vaccines, biosensors, and even a recombinant secondary metabolite used in herbal and complementary medicine, such as artemisinin, a malaria drug which is usually extracted from the plant Artemisia annua. The power of synthetic biology has encouraged scientists in Indonesia, and is still in early development. This paper also covers some research from an Indonesian research institute in synthetic biology such as observing the production of bio surfactants and the enhanced production of artemisinin using a transient expression system. Synthetic biology development in Indonesia may also be related to the iGEM competition, a large synthetic biology research competition which was attended by several universities in Indonesia. The application of synthetic biology for drug discovery will be discussed.

  8. Printability of Synthetic Papers by Electrophotography

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rozália Szentgyörgyvölgyi


    Full Text Available This paper deals with the printability of synthetic papers by the electrophotography technique. Prints of cmyk colour fields from 20% to 100% raster tone values were printed on three types of synthetic papers (one film synthetic paper and two fiber synthetic papers. The investigation of the appearance included densitometric measurement of the cmyk prints. The results have shown differences in the optical density and optical tone value between cmyk prints made on various synthetic papers. The highest optical density and the increase of the optical tone value were observed on the film synthetic paper, where cmyk prints were more saturated. The highest abrasion resistance of cmyk prints was obtained from the fibre synthetic paper.

  9. Synthetic Adhesive Attachment Discs based on Spider Pyriform Silk Architecture (United States)

    Jain, Dharamdeep; Sahni, Vasav; Dhinojwala, Ali


    Among the variety of silks produced by spiders, pyriform silk is used in conjunction with the dragline silk to attach webs to different surfaces. Cob weaver spiders employ different architectural patterns to utilize the pyriform silk and form attachment joints with each pattern having a characteristic adhesive performance. The staple pin architecture is a one of the strongest attachment designs employed by spiders to attach their webs. Here we use a synthetic approach to create the a similar patterned architecture attachment discs on aluminum substrate using thermoplastic polyurethane. Measurable pull off forces are generated when the synthetic discs are peeled off a surface. This innovative adhesive strategy can be a source of design in various biomedical applications. Financial Support from National Science Foundation.

  10. Synthetic aperture integration (SAI) algorithm for SAR imaging (United States)

    Chambers, David H; Mast, Jeffrey E; Paglieroni, David W; Beer, N. Reginald


    A method and system for detecting the presence of subsurface objects within a medium is provided. In some embodiments, the imaging and detection system operates in a multistatic mode to collect radar return signals generated by an array of transceiver antenna pairs that is positioned across the surface and that travels down the surface. The imaging and detection system pre-processes the return signal to suppress certain undesirable effects. The imaging and detection system then generates synthetic aperture radar images from real aperture radar images generated from the pre-processed return signal. The imaging and detection system then post-processes the synthetic aperture radar images to improve detection of subsurface objects. The imaging and detection system identifies peaks in the energy levels of the post-processed image frame, which indicates the presence of a subsurface object.

  11. Synthetic Aperture Vector Flow Imaging

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villagómez Hoyos, Carlos Armando

    The main objective of this project was to continue the development of a synthetic aperture vector flow estimator. This type of estimator is capable of overcoming two of the major limitations in conventional ultrasound systems: 1) the inability to scan large region of interest with high temporal......, this thesis showed that novel information can be obtained with vector velocity methods providing quantitative estimates of blood flow and insight into the complexity of the hemodynamics dynamics. This could give the clinician a new tool in assessment and treatment of a broad range of diseases....

  12. Synthetic Biology Guides Biofuel Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael R. Connor


    Full Text Available The advancement of microbial processes for the production of renewable liquid fuels has increased with concerns about the current fuel economy. The development of advanced biofuels in particular has risen to address some of the shortcomings of ethanol. These advanced fuels have chemical properties similar to petroleum-based liquid fuels, thus removing the need for engine modification or infrastructure redesign. While the productivity and titers of each of these processes remains to be improved, progress in synthetic biology has provided tools to guide the engineering of these processes through present and future challenges.

  13. Setting Boundaries with Memory: Generation of Topological Boundary States in Floquet-Induced Synthetic Crystals (United States)

    Baum, Yuval; Refael, Gil


    When a d -dimensional quantum system is subjected to a periodic drive, it may be treated as a (d +1 )-dimensional system, where the extra dimension is a synthetic one. This approach, however, affords only a limited level of control of the effective potential along the synthetic direction. In this work, we introduce a new mean for controlling the Floquet synthetic dimension. We show that arbitrary potentials, as well as edges in the synthetic dimension, could be introduced using a memory component in the system's dynamics. We demonstrate this principle by exploring topological edge states propagating normal to synthetic dimensions. Such systems may act as an optical isolator which allows the transmission of light in a directional way. Also, we suggest an experimental realization of the memory effect in spins coupled to nanofabricated Weyl semimetal surface states.

  14. Tracking the emergence of synthetic biology. (United States)

    Shapira, Philip; Kwon, Seokbeom; Youtie, Jan


    Synthetic biology is an emerging domain that combines biological and engineering concepts and which has seen rapid growth in research, innovation, and policy interest in recent years. This paper contributes to efforts to delineate this emerging domain by presenting a newly constructed bibliometric definition of synthetic biology. Our approach is dimensioned from a core set of papers in synthetic biology, using procedures to obtain benchmark synthetic biology publication records, extract keywords from these benchmark records, and refine the keywords, supplemented with articles published in dedicated synthetic biology journals. We compare our search strategy with other recent bibliometric approaches to define synthetic biology, using a common source of publication data for the period from 2000 to 2015. The paper details the rapid growth and international spread of research in synthetic biology in recent years, demonstrates that diverse research disciplines are contributing to the multidisciplinary development of synthetic biology research, and visualizes this by profiling synthetic biology research on the map of science. We further show the roles of a relatively concentrated set of research sponsors in funding the growth and trajectories of synthetic biology. In addition to discussing these analyses, the paper notes limitations and suggests lines for further work.

  15. DNA recognition by synthetic constructs. (United States)

    Pazos, Elena; Mosquera, Jesús; Vázquez, M Eugenio; Mascareñas, José L


    The interaction of transcription factors with specific DNA sites is key for the regulation of gene expression. Despite the availability of a large body of structural data on protein-DNA complexes, we are still far from fully understanding the molecular and biophysical bases underlying such interactions. Therefore, the development of non-natural agents that can reproduce the DNA-recognition properties of natural transcription factors remains a major and challenging goal in chemical biology. In this review we summarize the basics of double-stranded DNA recognition by transcription factors, and describe recent developments in the design and preparation of synthetic DNA binders. We mainly focus on synthetic peptides that have been designed by following the DNA interaction of natural proteins, and we discuss how the tools of organic synthesis can be used to make artificial constructs equipped with functionalities that introduce additional properties to the recognition process, such as sensing and controllability. Copyright © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  16. Synthetic Biology of Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA). (United States)

    Meng, De-Chuan; Chen, Guo-Qiang

    Microbial polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) are a family of biodegradable and biocompatible polyesters which have been extensively studied using synthetic biology and metabolic engineering methods for improving production and for widening its diversity. Synthetic biology has allowed PHA to become composition controllable random copolymers, homopolymers, and block copolymers. Recent developments showed that it is possible to establish a microbial platform for producing not only random copolymers with controllable monomers and their ratios but also structurally defined homopolymers and block copolymers. This was achieved by engineering the genome of Pseudomonas putida or Pseudomonas entomophiles to weaken the β-oxidation and in situ fatty acid synthesis pathways, so that a fatty acid fed to the bacteria maintains its original chain length and structures when incorporated into the PHA chains. The engineered bacterium allows functional groups in a fatty acid to be introduced into PHA, forming functional PHA, which, upon grafting, generates endless PHA variety. Recombinant Escherichia coli also succeeded in producing efficiently poly(3-hydroxypropionate) or P3HP, the strongest member of PHA. Synthesis pathways of P3HP and its copolymer P3HB3HP of 3-hydroxybutyrate and 3-hydroxypropionate were assembled respectively to allow their synthesis from glucose. CRISPRi was also successfully used to manipulate simultaneously multiple genes and control metabolic flux in E. coli to obtain a series of copolymer P3HB4HB of 3-hydroxybutyrate (3HB) and 4-hydroxybutyrate (4HB). The bacterial shapes were successfully engineered for enhanced PHA accumulation.

  17. Vectoring of parallel synthetic jets (United States)

    Berk, Tim; Ganapathisubramani, Bharathram; Gomit, Guillaume


    A pair of parallel synthetic jets can be vectored by applying a phase difference between the two driving signals. The resulting jet can be merged or bifurcated and either vectored towards the actuator leading in phase or the actuator lagging in phase. In the present study, the influence of phase difference and Strouhal number on the vectoring behaviour is examined experimentally. Phase-locked vorticity fields, measured using Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV), are used to track vortex pairs. The physical mechanisms that explain the diversity in vectoring behaviour are observed based on the vortex trajectories. For a fixed phase difference, the vectoring behaviour is shown to be primarily influenced by pinch-off time of vortex rings generated by the synthetic jets. Beyond a certain formation number, the pinch-off timescale becomes invariant. In this region, the vectoring behaviour is determined by the distance between subsequent vortex rings. We acknowledge the financial support from the European Research Council (ERC grant agreement no. 277472).

  18. Synthetic membrane-targeted antibiotics. (United States)

    Vooturi, S K; Firestine, S M


    Antimicrobial resistance continues to evolve and presents serious challenges in the therapy of both nosocomial and community-acquired infections. The rise of resistant strains like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (VRSA) and vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) suggests that antimicrobial resistance is an inevitable evolutionary response to antimicrobial use. This highlights the tremendous need for antibiotics against new bacterial targets. Agents that target the integrity of bacterial membrane are relatively novel in the clinical armamentarium. Daptomycin, a lipopeptide is a classical example of membrane-bound antibiotic. Nature has also utilized this tactic. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), which are found in all kingdoms, function primarily by permeabilizing the bacterial membrane. AMPs have several advantages over existing antibiotics including a broad spectrum of activity, rapid bactericidal activity, no cross-resistance with the existing antibiotics and a low probability for developing resistance. Currently, a small number of peptides have been developed for clinical use but therapeutic applications are limited because of poor bioavailability and high manufacturing cost. However, their broad specificity, potent activity and lower probability for resistance have spurred the search for synthetic mimetics of antimicrobial peptides as membrane-active antibiotics. In this review, we will discuss the different classes of synthetic membrane-bound antibiotics published since 2004.

  19. Synthetic vision display evaluation studies (United States)

    Regal, David M.; Whittington, David H.


    The goal of this research was to help us understand the display requirements for a synthetic vision system for the High Speed Civil Transport (HSCT). Four experiments were conducted to examine the effects of different levels of perceptual cue complexity in displays used by pilots in a flare and landing task. Increased levels of texture mapping of terrain and runway produced mixed results, including harder but shorter landings and a lower flare initiation altitude. Under higher workload conditions, increased texture resulted in an improvement in performance. An increase in familiar size cues did not result in improved performance. Only a small difference was found between displays using two patterns of high resolution texture mapping. The effects of increased perceptual cue complexity on performance was not as strong as would be predicted from the pilot's subjective reports or from related literature. A description of the role of a synthetic vision system in the High Speed Civil Transport is provide along with a literature review covering applied research related to perceptual cue usage in aircraft displays.

  20. Heat transfer and flow structure evaluation of a synthetic jet emanating from a planar heat sink

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Manning, Paul; Persoons, Tim; Murray, Darina


    Direct impinging synthetic jets are a proven method for heat transfer enhancement, and have been subject to extensive research. However, despite the vast amount of research into direct synthetic jet impingement, there has been little research investigating the effects of a synthetic jet emanating from a heated surface, this forms the basis of the current research investigation. Both single and multiple orifices are integrated into a planar heat sink forming a synthetic jet, thus allowing the heat transfer enhancement and flow structures to be assessed. The heat transfer analysis highlighted that the multiple orifice synthetic jet resulted in the greatest heat transfer enhancements. The flow structures responsible for these enhancements were identified using a combination of flow visualisation, thermal imaging and thermal boundary layer analysis. The flow structure analysis identified that the synthetic jets decreased the thermal boundary layer thickness resulting in a more effective convective heat transfer process. Flow visualisation revealed entrainment of local air adjacent to the heated surface; this occurred from vortex roll-up at the surface of the heat sink and from the highly sheared jet flow. Furthermore, a secondary entrainment was identified which created a surface impingement effect. It is proposed that all three flow features enhance the heat transfer characteristics of the system.

  1. Word selection affects perceptions of synthetic biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tonidandel Scott


    Full Text Available Abstract Members of the synthetic biology community have discussed the significance of word selection when describing synthetic biology to the general public. In particular, many leaders proposed the word "create" was laden with negative connotations. We found that word choice and framing does affect public perception of synthetic biology. In a controlled experiment, participants perceived synthetic biology more negatively when "create" was used to describe the field compared to "construct" (p = 0.008. Contrary to popular opinion among synthetic biologists, however, low religiosity individuals were more influenced negatively by the framing manipulation than high religiosity people. Our results suggest that synthetic biologists directly influence public perception of their field through avoidance of the word "create".

  2. Creating biological nanomaterials using synthetic biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rice, MaryJoe K; Ruder, Warren C


    Synthetic biology is a new discipline that combines science and engineering approaches to precisely control biological networks. These signaling networks are especially important in fields such as biomedicine and biochemical engineering. Additionally, biological networks can also be critical to the production of naturally occurring biological nanomaterials, and as a result, synthetic biology holds tremendous potential in creating new materials. This review introduces the field of synthetic biology, discusses how biological systems naturally produce materials, and then presents examples and strategies for incorporating synthetic biology approaches in the development of new materials. In particular, strategies for using synthetic biology to produce both organic and inorganic nanomaterials are discussed. Ultimately, synthetic biology holds the potential to dramatically impact biological materials science with significant potential applications in medical systems. (review)

  3. Creating biological nanomaterials using synthetic biology. (United States)

    Rice, MaryJoe K; Ruder, Warren C


    Synthetic biology is a new discipline that combines science and engineering approaches to precisely control biological networks. These signaling networks are especially important in fields such as biomedicine and biochemical engineering. Additionally, biological networks can also be critical to the production of naturally occurring biological nanomaterials, and as a result, synthetic biology holds tremendous potential in creating new materials. This review introduces the field of synthetic biology, discusses how biological systems naturally produce materials, and then presents examples and strategies for incorporating synthetic biology approaches in the development of new materials. In particular, strategies for using synthetic biology to produce both organic and inorganic nanomaterials are discussed. Ultimately, synthetic biology holds the potential to dramatically impact biological materials science with significant potential applications in medical systems.

  4. Advanced Drug Delivery Systems - a Synthetic and Biological Applied Evaluation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjerg, Lise Nørkjær

    function as the targeting moiety on the surface of the liposomes. Several examples of synthetic procedures known from the literature are presented. The chapter is completed with a study covering the conjugation efficiencies of a variety of chemical functionalities. Large differences are revealed between...... to guide the uptake, in addition to an enzymatically cleavable peptide sequence, whose cleavage would result in removal of the polymer layer as well as uncovering cationic charges on the liposomal surface. These systems were shown to have superior drug efficacy in vitro....

  5. Monitoring coastal inundation with Synthetic Aperture Radar satellite data (United States)

    Suzuoki, Yukihiro; Rangoonwala, Amina; Ramsey, Elijah W.


    Maps representing the presence and absence of surface inundation in the Louisiana coastal zone were created from available satellite scenes acquired by the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency's Advanced Land Observing Satellite and by the European Space Agency's Envisat from late 2006 through summer 2009. Detection of aboveground surface flooding relied on the well-documented and distinct signature of decreased backscatter in Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR), which is indicative of inundated marsh in the Gulf of Mexico. Even though decreases in backscatter were distinctive, the multiplicity of possible interactions between changing flood depths and canopy height yielded complex SAR-based representations of the marshes.

  6. Synthetic approaches to uniform polymers. (United States)

    Ali, Monzur; Brocchini, Steve


    Uniform polymers are characterised by a narrow molecular weight distribution (MWD). Uniformity is also defined by chemical structure in respect of (1) monomer orientation, sequence and stereo-regularity, (2) polymer shape and morphology and (3) chemical functionality. The function of natural polymers such as polypeptides and polynucleotides is related to their conformational structure (e.g. folded tertiary structure). This is only possible because of their high degree of uniformity. While completely uniform synthetic polymers are rare, polymers with broad structure and MWD are widely used in medicine and the biomedical sciences. They are integral components in final dosage forms, drug delivery systems (DDS) and in implantable devices. Increasingly uniform polymers are being used to develop more complex medicines (e.g. delivery of biopharmaceuticals, enhanced formulations or DDS's for existing actives). In addition to the function imparted by any new polymer it will be required to meet stringent specifications in terms of cost containment, scalability, biocompatibility and performance. Synthetic polymers with therapeutic activity are also being developed to exploit their polyvalent properties, which is not possible with low molecular weight molecules. There is need to utilise uniform polymers for applications where the polymer may interact with the systemic circulation, tissues or cellular environment. There are also potential applications (e.g. stimuli responsive coatings) where uniform polymers may be used for their more defined property profile. While it is not yet practical to prepare synthetic polymers to the same high degree of uniformity as proteins, nature also effectively utilises many polymers with lower degrees of uniformity (e.g. polysaccharides, poly(amino acids), polyhydroxyalkanoates). In recent years it has become possible to prepare with practical experimental protocols sufficient quantities of polymers that display many aspects of uniformity. This

  7. Synthetic Lipoproteins as Carriers for Drug Delivery. (United States)

    Huang, Gangliang; Liu, Yang; Huang, Hualiang


    Synthetic lipoprotein is an effective carrier of targeted delivery for drugs. It has the very small size, good biocompatibility, suitable half-life, and specific lipoprotein receptorbinding capacity. Compared with the traditional natural lipoprotein, synthetic lipoprotein not only retains the original biological characteristics and functions, but also exhibits the excellent characteristics in drug delivery. Herein, the advantages, development, applications, and prospect of synthetic lipoproteins as drug carriers were summarized.

  8. Geo synthetic-reinforced Pavement systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zornberg, J. G.


    Geo synthetics have been used as reinforcement inclusions to improve pavement performance. while there are clear field evidence of the benefit of using geo synthetic reinforcements, the specific conditions or mechanisms that govern the reinforcement of pavements are, at best, unclear and have remained largely unmeasured. Significant research has been recently conducted with the objectives of: (i) determining the relevant properties of geo synthetics that contribute to the enhanced performance of pavement systems, (ii) developing appropriate analytical, laboratory and field methods capable of quantifying the pavement performance, and (iii) enabling the prediction of pavement performance as a function of the properties of the various types of geo synthetics. (Author)

  9. Veterans Affairs Suicide Prevention Synthetic Dataset (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The VA's Veteran Health Administration, in support of the Open Data Initiative, is providing the Veterans Affairs Suicide Prevention Synthetic Dataset (VASPSD). The...

  10. Synthetic biology assemblies for sustainable space exploration (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The work utilized synthetic biology to create sustainable food production processes by developing technology to efficiently convert inedible crop waste to...

  11. Synthetic biology of antimicrobial discovery (United States)

    Zakeri, Bijan; Lu, Timothy K.


    Antibiotic discovery has a storied history. From the discovery of penicillin by Sir Alexander Fleming to the relentless quest for antibiotics by Selman Waksman, the stories have become like folklore, used to inspire future generations of scientists. However, recent discovery pipelines have run dry at a time when multidrug resistant pathogens are on the rise. Nature has proven to be a valuable reservoir of antimicrobial agents, which are primarily produced by modularized biochemical pathways. Such modularization is well suited to remodeling by an interdisciplinary approach that spans science and engineering. Herein, we discuss the biological engineering of small molecules, peptides, and non-traditional antimicrobials and provide an overview of the growing applicability of synthetic biology to antimicrobials discovery. PMID:23654251

  12. Preparation of synthetic standard minerals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Herrick, C.C.; Bustamante, S.J.; Charls, R.W.; Cowan, R.E.; Hakkila, E.A.; Hull, D.E.; Olinger, B.W.; Roof, R.B.; Sheinberg, H.; Herrick, G.C.


    A number of techniques for synthetic mineral preparations have been examined. These techniques include hot-pressing in graphite dies at moderate pressures, high-pressure, high-temperature synthesis in a piston and cylinder apparatus, isostatic pressing under helium gas pressures, hydrous mineral preparations using water as the pressure medium, explosion-generated shock waves, and radiofrequency heating. Minerals suitable for equation-of-state studies (three-inch, high-density discs), for thermodynamic property determinations (low-density powders) and for microprobe standards (fusion-cast microbeads) have been prepared. Mechanical stress-strain calculations in the piston-cylinder apparatus have been initiated and their integration with thermal stress calculations is currently under investigation

  13. Synthetic biology of antimicrobial discovery. (United States)

    Zakeri, Bijan; Lu, Timothy K


    Antibiotic discovery has a storied history. From the discovery of penicillin by Sir Alexander Fleming to the relentless quest for antibiotics by Selman Waksman, the stories have become like folklore used to inspire future generations of scientists. However, recent discovery pipelines have run dry at a time when multidrug-resistant pathogens are on the rise. Nature has proven to be a valuable reservoir of antimicrobial agents, which are primarily produced by modularized biochemical pathways. Such modularization is well suited to remodeling by an interdisciplinary approach that spans science and engineering. Herein, we discuss the biological engineering of small molecules, peptides, and non-traditional antimicrobials and provide an overview of the growing applicability of synthetic biology to antimicrobials discovery.

  14. Synthetic biology: a utilitarian perspective. (United States)

    Smith, Kevin


    I examine the positive and negative features of synthetic biology ('SynBio') from a utilitarian ethical perspective. The potential beneficial outcomes from SynBio in the context of medicine are substantial; however it is not presently possible to predict precise outcomes due to the nascent state of the field. Potential negative outcomes from SynBio also exist, including iatrogenesis and bioterrorism; however it is not yet possible to quantify these risks. I argue that the application of a 'precautionary' approach to SynBio is ethically fraught, as is the notion that SynBio-associated knowledge ought to be restricted. I conclude that utilitarians ought to support a broadly laissez-faire stance in respect of SynBio. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Synthetic biology: engineering molecular computers

    CERN Multimedia

    CERN. Geneva


    Complicated systems cannot survive the rigors of a chaotic environment, without balancing mechanisms that sense, decide upon and counteract the exerted disturbances. Especially so with living organisms, forced by competition to incredible complexities, escalating also their self-controlling plight. Therefore, they compute. Can we harness biological mechanisms to create artificial computing systems? Biology offers several levels of design abstraction: molecular machines, cells, organisms... ranging from the more easily-defined to the more inherently complex. At the bottom of this stack we find the nucleic acids, RNA and DNA, with their digital structure and relatively precise interactions. They are central enablers of designing artificial biological systems, in the confluence of engineering and biology, that we call Synthetic biology. In the first part, let us follow their trail towards an overview of building computing machines with molecules -- and in the second part, take the case study of iGEM Greece 201...

  16. Microorganism Utilization for Synthetic Milk (United States)

    Morford, Megan A.; Khodadad, Christina L.; Caro, Janicce I.; Spencer, LaShelle E.; Richards, Jeffery T.; Strayer, Richard F.; Birmele, Michele N.; Wheeler, Raymond M.


    A desired architecture for long duration spaceflight, like aboard the International Space Station or for future missions to Mars, is to provide a supply of fresh food crops for the astronauts. However, some crops can create a high proportion of inedible plant waste. The main goal of the Synthetic Biology project, Cow in a Column, was to produce the components of milk (sugar, lipid, protein) from inedible plant waste by utilizing microorganisms (fungi, yeast, bacteria). Of particular interest was utilizing the valuable polysaccharide, cellulose, found in plant waste, to naturally fuel-through microorganism cellular metabolism- the creation of sugar (glucose), lipid (milk fat), and protein (casein) in order to produce a synthetic edible food product. Environmental conditions such as pH, temperature, carbon source, aeration, and choice microorganisms were optimized in the laboratory and the desired end-products, sugars and lipids, were analyzed. Trichoderma reesei, a known cellulolytic fungus, was utilized to drive the production of glucose, with the intent that the produced glucose would serve as the carbon source for milk fat production and be a substitute for the milk sugar lactose. Lipid production would be carried out by Rhodosporidium toruloides, yeast known to accumulate those lipids that are typically found in milk fat. Results showed that glucose and total lipid content were below what was expected during this phase of experimentation. In addition, individual analysis of six fatty acids revealed that the percentage of each fatty acid was lower than naturally produced bovine milk. Overall, this research indicates that microorganisms could be utilized to breakdown inedible solid waste to produce useable products. For future work, the production of the casein protein for milk would require the development of a genetically modified organism, which was beyond the scope of the original project. Additional trials would be needed to further refine the required

  17. Surface deformation monitoring using synthetic aperture radar data

    African Journals Online (AJOL)


    selection. The proposed method is applied to variably sampled 250m MODIS time-series data ... (percentage of change examples correctly detected) and false alarm rate (percentage of ... Both datasets are bi-directional reflectance distribution.

  18. Surface deformation monitoring using synthetic aperture radar data

    African Journals Online (AJOL)


    2Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South ..... sensor which captured data at L-band and a selection of polarization states. .... including the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and ...

  19. Using XAFS, EDAX and AFM in comparative study of various natural and synthetic emeralds

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Parikh, P.; Saini, N.L.; Dalela, S.; Bhardwaj, D.M.; Fernandes, S.; Gupta, R.P.; Garg, K.B.


    We have performed XAFS, EDAX and AFM studies on some natural and synthetic emeralds. While the XAFS results yield information on changes in the valence of the Cr ion and the n-n distance the AFM is used to determine the areal atomic density on surface of the crystals. It is a pilot study to explore if the three techniques can offer a possible way of distinguishing between the natural and synthetic emeralds and the results are promising

  20. Natural and synthetic polymers in fabric and home care applications (United States)

    Paderes, Monissa; Ahirwal, Deepak; Fernández Prieto, Susana


    Polymers can be tailored to provide different benefits in Fabric & Home Care formulations depending on the monomers and modifications used, such as avoiding dye transfer inhibition in the wash, modifying the surface of tiles or increasing the viscosity and providing suspension properties to consumer products. Specifically, the rheology modification properties of synthetic and natural polymers are discussed in this chapter. The choice of a polymeric rheology modifier will depend on the formulation ingredients (charges, functional groups), the type and the amount of surfactants, the pH and the desired rheology modification. Natural polymeric rheology modifiers have been traditionally used in the food industry, being xanthan gum one of the most well-known ones. On the contrary, synthetic rheology modifiers are preferably used in paints & coats, textile printing and cleaning products.

  1. Crust growth and gas retention in synthetic Hanford waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bryan, S.A.; Pederson, L.R.; Scheele, R.D.


    The focus of the work described here is to examine the principal contributing factors leading to slurry growth and gas retention within waste from a particular high-level waste tanks on the Hanford Site. Laboratory studies of aged synthetic waste have shown that the waste retains gases in the form of bubble attachment to solid particles. This attachment phenomenon is related to the presence of organic constituents (HEDTA, EDTA, and citrate) added to the waste matrix. The mechanism for bubble attachment is related to the hydrophobic surface produced by the organic complexant. The formation of a stable gas bubble/solid interaction is believed to be responsible for crust flotation and gas retention in the synthetic waste used here

  2. Controlling Ionic Transport for Device Design in Synthetic Nanopores (United States)

    Kalman, Eric Boyd

    Polymer nanopores present a number of behaviors not seen in microscale systems, such as ion current rectification, ionic selectivity, size exclusion and potential dependent ion concentrations in and near the pore. The existence of these effects stems from the small size of nanopores with respect to the characteristic length scales of surface interactions at the interface between the nanopore surface and the solution within it. The large surface-to-volume ratio due to the nanoscale geometry of a nanopore, as well as similarity in scale between geometry and interaction demands the solution interact with the nanopore walls. As surfaces in solution almost always carry residual charge, these surface forces are primarily the electrostatic interactions between the charge groups on the pore surface and the ions in solution. These interactions may be used by the experimentalist to control ionic transport through synthetic nanopores, and use them as a template for the construction of devices. In this research, we present our work on creating a number of ionic analogs to seminal electronic devices, specifically diodes, and transistors, by controlling ionic transport through the electrostatic interactions between a single synthetic nanopore and ions. Control is achieved by "doping" the effective charge carrier concentration in specific regions of the nanopore through manipulation of the pore's surface charge. This manipulation occurs through two mechanisms: chemical modification of the surface charge and electrostatic manipulation of the local internal nanopore potential using a gate electrode. Additionally, the innate selectivity of the charged nanopores walls allows for the separation of charges in solution. This well-known effect, which spawns measureable quantities, the streaming potential and current, has been used to create nanoscale water desalination membranes. We attempt to create a device using membranes with large nanopore densities for the desalination of water

  3. Synergistic Synthetic Biology: Units in Concert

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trosset, Jean-Yves; Carbonell, Pablo


    Synthetic biology aims at translating the methods and strategies from engineering into biology in order to streamline the design and construction of biological devices through standardized parts. Modular synthetic biology devices are designed by means of an adequate elimination of cross-talk that makes circuits orthogonal and specific. To that end, synthetic constructs need to be adequately optimized through in silico modeling by choosing the right complement of genetic parts and by experimental tuning through directed evolution and craftsmanship. In this review, we consider an additional and complementary tool available to the synthetic biologist for innovative design and successful construction of desired circuit functionalities: biological synergies. Synergy is a prevalent emergent property in biological systems that arises from the concerted action of multiple factors producing an amplification or cancelation effect compared with individual actions alone. Synergies appear in domains as diverse as those involved in chemical and protein activity, polypharmacology, and metabolic pathway complementarity. In conventional synthetic biology designs, synergistic cross-talk between parts and modules is generally attenuated in order to verify their orthogonality. Synergistic interactions, however, can induce emergent behavior that might prove useful for synthetic biology applications, like in functional circuit design, multi-drug treatment, or in sensing and delivery devices. Synergistic design principles are therefore complementary to those coming from orthogonal design and may provide added value to synthetic biology applications. The appropriate modeling, characterization, and design of synergies between biological parts and units will allow the discovery of yet unforeseeable, novel synthetic biology applications.

  4. Study of seed for synthetical quartz

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suzuki, C.K.; Torikai, D.


    Natural quartz blocks for seed (synthetic quartz technology) were studied by using various characterization techniques, such as X-ray topography, optical micrography, inspectoscopy, polariscopy and conoscopy, and etching. One of the most commonly found defect is the electrical or Dauphine twin. In The present research, we have developed a methodology to obtain a highly perfect seed for the synthetic quartz industries. (author) [pt

  5. Synthetic biology: programming cells for biomedical applications. (United States)

    Hörner, Maximilian; Reischmann, Nadine; Weber, Wilfried


    The emerging field of synthetic biology is a novel biological discipline at the interface between traditional biology, chemistry, and engineering sciences. Synthetic biology aims at the rational design of complex synthetic biological devices and systems with desired properties by combining compatible, modular biological parts in a systematic manner. While the first engineered systems were mainly proof-of-principle studies to demonstrate the power of the modular engineering approach of synthetic biology, subsequent systems focus on applications in the health, environmental, and energy sectors. This review describes recent approaches for biomedical applications that were developed along the synthetic biology design hierarchy, at the level of individual parts, of devices, and of complex multicellular systems. It describes how synthetic biological parts can be used for the synthesis of drug-delivery tools, how synthetic biological devices can facilitate the discovery of novel drugs, and how multicellular synthetic ecosystems can give insight into population dynamics of parasites and hosts. These examples demonstrate how this new discipline could contribute to novel solutions in the biopharmaceutical industry.

  6. Synergistic Synthetic Biology: Units in Concert (United States)

    Trosset, Jean-Yves; Carbonell, Pablo


    Synthetic biology aims at translating the methods and strategies from engineering into biology in order to streamline the design and construction of biological devices through standardized parts. Modular synthetic biology devices are designed by means of an adequate elimination of cross-talk that makes circuits orthogonal and specific. To that end, synthetic constructs need to be adequately optimized through in silico modeling by choosing the right complement of genetic parts and by experimental tuning through directed evolution and craftsmanship. In this review, we consider an additional and complementary tool available to the synthetic biologist for innovative design and successful construction of desired circuit functionalities: biological synergies. Synergy is a prevalent emergent property in biological systems that arises from the concerted action of multiple factors producing an amplification or cancelation effect compared with individual actions alone. Synergies appear in domains as diverse as those involved in chemical and protein activity, polypharmacology, and metabolic pathway complementarity. In conventional synthetic biology designs, synergistic cross-talk between parts and modules is generally attenuated in order to verify their orthogonality. Synergistic interactions, however, can induce emergent behavior that might prove useful for synthetic biology applications, like in functional circuit design, multi-drug treatment, or in sensing and delivery devices. Synergistic design principles are therefore complementary to those coming from orthogonal design and may provide added value to synthetic biology applications. The appropriate modeling, characterization, and design of synergies between biological parts and units will allow the discovery of yet unforeseeable, novel synthetic biology applications. PMID:25022769

  7. Metal immobilization in soils using synthetic zeolites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Osté, L.A.; Lexmond, T.M.; Riemsdijk, van W.H.


    In situ immobilization of heavy metals in contaminated soils is a technique to improve soil quality. Synthetic zeolites are potentially useful additives to bind heavy metals. This study selected the most effective zeolite in cadmium and zinc binding out of six synthetic zeolites (mordenite-type,

  8. Synthetic and Empirical Capsicum Annuum Image Dataset

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Barth, R.


    This dataset consists of per-pixel annotated synthetic (10500) and empirical images (50) of Capsicum annuum, also known as sweet or bell pepper, situated in a commercial greenhouse. Furthermore, the source models to generate the synthetic images are included. The aim of the datasets are to

  9. Synthetic aperture radar: principles and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khan, N.A.; Yahya, K.M.


    In this paper an introduction to synthetic aperture radar is presented. Synthetic aperture radar is a relatively new remote sensing platform and the technology has matured a lot in the last two decades. This paper introduces the concepts behind SAR principles as well as the major areas where this new technology has shown additional information. (author)

  10. Opportunities for microfluidic technologies in synthetic biology


    Gulati, Shelly; Rouilly, Vincent; Niu, Xize; Chappell, James; Kitney, Richard I.; Edel, Joshua B.; Freemont, Paul S.; deMello, Andrew J.


    We introduce microfluidics technologies as a key foundational technology for synthetic biology experimentation. Recent advances in the field of microfluidics are reviewed and the potential of such a technological platform to support the rapid development of synthetic biology solutions is discussed.

  11. Steel desulphurization with synthetic slag

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heput, T.


    Full Text Available Generally speaking, sulphur is considered a harmful element for steel quality, reason why all the technological steps are being taken in order to eliminate it from the metal bath. This paper deals with the influence of the chemical composition, on the slag quantity and of the bath stirring condition upon the desulphurization process in the casting ladle by treatment with synthetic slag. The experiments were made at an open-hearth plant with the steel tapping in two ladles (the desulphurization was made with synthetic slag at one ladle while the other one was considered standard and at the electric steel plant and for the synthetic slag formation a mix was used, made, according to several receipts, of: lime (50-75%, fluorine (0-17%, bauxite (0-32% and aluminous slag (8-22%. The data were processed in the calculation programs EXCEL and MATLAB, which resulted in a series of correlations between the desulphurization degree and the chemical composition of the slag, respectively the slag quantity both for the charges bubbled with Argon and the unbubbled ones.

    En general, el azufre es considerado un elemento nocivo para la calidad del acero y, por eso, en la práctica, se toman todas las medidas de orden tecnológico para su eliminación del baño metálico. En este trabajo se analiza la influencia de la composición química, de la cantidad de escoria y del estado de agitación del baño sobre el proceso de desulfuración en la cuchara para fundir por tratamiento con escoria sintética. Los experimentos se han realizado en una acería evacuando el acero en dos ollas (en una cuchara se efectuó la desulfuración con escoria sintética y a la otra se consideró como patrón y en un acería eléctrica y para la formación de la escoria sintética se utilizó una mezcla producida según muchas recetas, formada por: cal (50-75%, fluorina (0-17%, bauxita (0-32% y escoria aluminosa (8-22%. Los datos han sido procesados en los programas de c

  12. Synthetic biology: an emerging engineering discipline. (United States)

    Cheng, Allen A; Lu, Timothy K


    Over the past decade, synthetic biology has emerged as an engineering discipline for biological systems. Compared with other substrates, biology poses a unique set of engineering challenges resulting from an incomplete understanding of natural biological systems and tools for manipulating them. To address these challenges, synthetic biology is advancing from developing proof-of-concept designs to focusing on core platforms for rational and high-throughput biological engineering. These platforms span the entire biological design cycle, including DNA construction, parts libraries, computational design tools, and interfaces for manipulating and probing synthetic circuits. The development of these enabling technologies requires an engineering mindset to be applied to biology, with an emphasis on generalizable techniques in addition to application-specific designs. This review aims to discuss the progress and challenges in synthetic biology and to illustrate areas where synthetic biology may impact biomedical engineering and human health.

  13. Mammalian synthetic biology: emerging medical applications. (United States)

    Kis, Zoltán; Pereira, Hugo Sant'Ana; Homma, Takayuki; Pedrigi, Ryan M; Krams, Rob


    In this review, we discuss new emerging medical applications of the rapidly evolving field of mammalian synthetic biology. We start with simple mammalian synthetic biological components and move towards more complex and therapy-oriented gene circuits. A comprehensive list of ON-OFF switches, categorized into transcriptional, post-transcriptional, translational and post-translational, is presented in the first sections. Subsequently, Boolean logic gates, synthetic mammalian oscillators and toggle switches will be described. Several synthetic gene networks are further reviewed in the medical applications section, including cancer therapy gene circuits, immuno-regulatory networks, among others. The final sections focus on the applicability of synthetic gene networks to drug discovery, drug delivery, receptor-activating gene circuits and mammalian biomanufacturing processes. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  14. Mass Spectrometric Analysis of Synthetic Organic Pigments. (United States)

    Sugaya, Naeko; Takahashi, Mitsuko; Sakurai, Katsumi; Tanaka, Nobuko; Okubo, Ichiro; Kawakami, Tsuyoshi


    Though synthetic organic colorants are used in various applications nowadays, there is the concern that impurities by-produced during the manufacturing and degradation products in some of these colorants are persistent organic pollutants and carcinogens. Thus, it is important to identify the synthetic organic colorants in various products, such as commercial paints, ink, cosmetics, food, textile, and plastics. Dyes, which are soluble in water and other solvents, could be analyzed by chromatographic methods. In contrast, it is difficult to analyze synthetic organic pigments by these methods because of their insolubility. This review is an overview of mass spectrometric analysis of synthetic organic pigments by various ionization methods. We highlight a recent study of textile samples by atmospheric pressure solid analysis probe MS. Furthermore, the mass spectral features of synthetic organic pigments and their separation from other components such as paint media and plasticizers are discussed.

  15. Science with Synthetic Stellar Surveys (United States)

    Sanderson, Robyn Ellyn


    A new generation of observational projects is poised to revolutionize our understanding of the resolved stellar populations of Milky-Way-like galaxies at an unprecedented level of detail, ushering in an era of precision studies of galaxy formation. In the Milky Way itself, astrometric, spectroscopic and photometric surveys will measure three-dimensional positions and velocities and numerous chemical abundances for stars from the disk to the halo, as well as for many satellite dwarf galaxies. In the Local Group and beyond, HST, JWST and eventually WFIRST will deliver pristine views of resolved stars. The groundbreaking scale and dimensionality of this new view of resolved stellar populations in galaxies challenge us to develop new theoretical tools to robustly compare these surveys to simulated galaxies, in order to take full advantage of our new ability to make detailed predictions for stellar populations within a cosmological context. I will describe a framework for generating realistic synthetic star catalogs and mock surveys from state-of-the-art cosmological-hydrodynamical simulations, and present several early scientific results from, and predictions for, resolved stellar surveys of our Galaxy and its neighbors.

  16. Synthetic mimics of antimicrobial peptides. (United States)

    Som, Abhigyan; Vemparala, Satyavani; Ivanov, Ivaylo; Tew, Gregory N


    Infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance are now considered the most imperative global healthcare problem. In the search for new treatments, host defense, or antimicrobial, peptides have attracted considerable attention due to their various unique properties; however, attempts to develop in vivo therapies have been severely limited. Efforts to develop synthetic mimics of antimicrobial peptides (SMAMPs) have increased significantly in the last decade, and this review will focus primarily on the structural evolution of SMAMPs and their membrane activity. This review will attempt to make a bridge between the design of SMAMPs and the fundamentals of SMAMP-membrane interactions. In discussions regarding the membrane interaction of SMAMPs, close attention will be paid to the lipid composition of the bilayer. Despite many years of study, the exact conformational aspects responsible for the high selectivity of these AMPs and SMAMPs toward bacterial cells over mammalian cells are still not fully understood. The ability to design SMAMPs that are potently antimicrobial, yet nontoxic to mammalian cells has been demonstrated with a variety of molecular scaffolds. Initial animal studies show very good tissue distribution along with more than a 4-log reduction in bacterial counts. The results on SMAMPs are not only extremely promising for novel antibiotics, but also provide an optimistic picture for the greater challenge of general proteomimetics.

  17. Synthetic sustained gene delivery systems. (United States)

    Agarwal, Ankit; Mallapragada, Surya K


    Gene therapy today is hampered by the need of a safe and efficient gene delivery system that can provide a sustained therapeutic effect without cytotoxicity or unwanted immune responses. Bolus gene delivery in solution results in the loss of delivered factors via lymphatic system and may cause undesired effects by the escape of bioactive molecules to distant sites. Controlled gene delivery systems, acting as localized depot of genes, provide an extended sustained release of genes, giving prolonged maintenance of the therapeutic level of encoded proteins. They also limit the DNA degradation in the nuclease rich extra-cellular environment. While attempts have been made to adapt existing controlled drug delivery technologies, more novel approaches are being investigated for controlled gene delivery. DNA encapsulated in nano/micro spheres of polymers have been administered systemically/orally to be taken up by the targeted tissues and provide sustained release once internalized. Alternatively, DNA entrapped in hydrogels or scaffolds have been injected/implanted in tissues/cavities as platforms for gene delivery. The present review examines these different modalities for sustained delivery of viral and non-viral gene-delivery vectors. Design parameters and release mechanisms of different systems made with synthetic or natural polymers are presented along with their prospective applications and opportunities for continuous development.

  18. Online professionalism: A synthetic review. (United States)

    Chretien, Katherine C; Tuck, Matthew G


    The rise of social media has increased connectivity and blurred personal and professional boundaries, bringing new challenges for medical professionalism. Whether traditional professionalism principles apply to the online social media space remains unknown. The purpose of this synthetic literature review was to characterize the original peer-reviewed research studies published between 1 January 2000-1 November 2014 on online professionalism, to assess methodologies and approaches used, and to provide insights to guide future studies in this area. The investigators searched three databases and performed manual searches of bibliographies to identify the 32 studies included. Most studies originated in the USA. Cross-sectional surveys and analyses of publicly available online content were the most common methodologies employed. Studies covered the general areas of use and privacy, assessment of unprofessional online behaviours, consensus-gathering of what constitutes unprofessional or inappropriate online behaviours, and education and policies. Studies were of variable quality; only around half of survey studies had response rates of 50% or greater. Medical trainees were the most common population studied. Future directions for research include public perspectives of online professionalism, impact on patient trust, and how to use social media productively as medical professionals.

  19. Synthetic Biology: Mapping the Scientific Landscape (United States)

    Oldham, Paul; Hall, Stephen; Burton, Geoff


    This article uses data from Thomson Reuters Web of Science to map and analyse the scientific landscape for synthetic biology. The article draws on recent advances in data visualisation and analytics with the aim of informing upcoming international policy debates on the governance of synthetic biology by the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity. We use mapping techniques to identify how synthetic biology can best be understood and the range of institutions, researchers and funding agencies involved. Debates under the Convention are likely to focus on a possible moratorium on the field release of synthetic organisms, cells or genomes. Based on the empirical evidence we propose that guidance could be provided to funding agencies to respect the letter and spirit of the Convention on Biological Diversity in making research investments. Building on the recommendations of the United States Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues we demonstrate that it is possible to promote independent and transparent monitoring of developments in synthetic biology using modern information tools. In particular, public and policy understanding and engagement with synthetic biology can be enhanced through the use of online interactive tools. As a step forward in this process we make existing data on the scientific literature on synthetic biology available in an online interactive workbook so that researchers, policy makers and civil society can explore the data and draw conclusions for themselves. PMID:22539946

  20. Synthetic Biology: game changer in intelectual property

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laurens Landeweerd


    Full Text Available Synthetic biology can be considered a game changer that plays an important role in the current NBIC, or BINC convergence of nano-, bio-, info and cognitive sciences. Although most synthetic biology experts are unaware of it, the field appeals to the imagination in its adherence to targets that were usually associated with premodern alchemist science. This paper elaborates several aspects of synthetic biology as well as its consequences for long held notions of intellectual property and the ontological categories of scientific discovery on the one hand and engineering on the other, the distinction between natural and artificial, the grown and the made.

  1. Defining the Synthetic Biology Supply Chain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Frazar, Sarah L.; Hund, Gretchen E.; Bonheyo, George T.; Diggans, James; Bartholomew, Rachel A.; Gehrig, Lindsey; Greaves, Mark


    In this article, a team of experts in synthetic biology, data analytics, and national security describe the overall supply chain surrounding synthetic biology. The team analyzes selected interactions within that network to better understand the risks raised by synthetic biology and identifies opportunities for risk mitigation. To introduce the concept, the article will briefly describe how an understanding of supply chains has been important in promoting nuclear nonproliferation objectives. The article concludes by assessing the structure and networks identified in the supply chains to reveal potential opportunities for future biodefense research and development; options for additional information exchange; and means to interdict, detect, or deter suspicious activity.

  2. [Smart therapeutics based on synthetic gene circuits]. (United States)

    Peng, Shuguang; Xie, Zhen


    Synthetic biology has an important impact on biology research since its birth. Applying the thought and methods that reference from electrical engineering, synthetic biology uncovers many regulatory mechanisms of life systems, transforms and expands a series of biological components. Therefore, it brings a wide range of biomedical applications, including providing new ideas for disease diagnosis and treatment. This review describes the latest advances in the field of disease diagnosis and therapy based on mammalian cell or bacterial synthetic gene circuits, and provides new ideas for future smart therapy design.

  3. Monoclonal antibodies against a synthetic peptide from human immunodeficiency virus type 1 Nef protein

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Steinaa, L; Wulff, A M; Saermark, T


    Monoclonal antibodies against a synthetic peptide (aa 138-152) from HIV-1 Nef protein were produced and characterized. Three hybridoma lines producing monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) against the synthetic peptide were generated by fusion between P3-X63 Ag8.653 myeloma cells and BALB/c splenocytes from...... mice immunized with the synthetic peptide coupled to keyhole limpet hemocyanin (KLH). The hybridomas were screened and selected by ELISA with the peptide coupled to bovine serum albumin (BSA) immobilized to the polystyrene surface and specificity for the peptide was confirmed by competitive ELISA...... with the peptide free in solution. The reactions of the MAbs with a 5-aa motif (WCYKL) included in the sequence were examined with synthetic peptides and two of the MAbs reacted with the motif. The recognitions of recombinant full-length Nef protein were also tested. One MAb reacted with the protein in both ELISA...

  4. Towards synthetic fuels via electrocatalysis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jovanov, Zarko

    -cadmium. By roughening the surface of polycrystalline copper in a low buffer capacity electrolyte, we favoured the selectivity towards ethylene rather than methane production. We show trends between the selectivity towards CO, CH4 and C2H4. By depositing monolayers of copper onto platinum single crystals, we tuned...

  5. INTRIGOSS: A new Library of High Resolution Synthetic Spectra (United States)

    Franchini, Mariagrazia; Morossi, Carlo; Di Marcancantonio, Paolo; Chavez, Miguel; GES-Builders


    INTRIGOSS (INaf Trieste Grid Of Synthetic Spectra) is a new High Resolution (HiRes) synthetic spectral library designed for studying F, G, and K stars. The library is based on atmosphere models computed with specified individual element abundances via ATLAS12 code. Normalized SPectra (NSP) and surface Flux SPectra (FSP), in the 4800-5400 Å wavelength range, were computed by means of the SPECTRUM code. The synthetic spectra are computed with an atomic and bi-atomic molecular line list including "bona fide" Predicted Lines (PLs) built by tuning loggf to reproduce very high SNR Solar spectrum and the UVES-U580 spectra of five cool giants extracted from the Gaia-ESO survey (GES). The astrophysical gf-values were then assessed by using more than 2000 stars with homogenous and accurate atmosphere parameters and detailed chemical composition from GES. The validity and greater accuracy of INTRIGOSS NSPs and FSPs with respect to other available spectral libraries is discussed. INTRIGOSS will be available on the web and will be a valuable tool for both stellar atmospheric parameters and stellar population studies.

  6. More Insight of Piezoelectric-based Synthetic Jet Actuators (United States)

    Housley, Kevin; Amitay, Michael


    Increased understanding of the internal flow of piezoelectric-based synthetic jet actuators is needed for the development of specialized actuator cavity geometries to increase jet momentum coefficients and tailor acoustic resonant frequencies. Synthetic jet actuators can benefit from tuning of the structural resonant frequency of the piezoelectric diaphragm(s) and the acoustic resonant frequency of the actuator cavity such that they experience constructive coupling. The resulting coupled behavior produces increased jet velocities. The ability to design synthetic jet actuators to operate with this behavior at select driving frequencies allows for them to be better used in flow control applications, which sometimes require specific jet frequencies in order to utilize the natural instabilities of a given flow field. A parametric study of varying actuator diameters was conducted to this end. Phase-locked data were collected on the jet velocity, the cavity pressure at various locations, and the three-dimensional deformation of the surface of the diaphragm. These results were compared to previous analytical work on the interaction between the structural resonance of the diaphragm and the acoustic resonance of the cavity. Funded by the Boeing Company.

  7. Nitric oxide reduction over a synthetic coal char

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    C. Pevida; A. Arenillas; F. Rubiera; J.J. Pis [Instituto Nacional del Carbon, CSIC, Oviedo (Spain)


    In the present work, the mechanisms involved in the NO heterogeneous reduction have been investigated. A synthetic coal char was used as the carbon source. This synthetic coal was made from a mixture of model compounds and provides well-known functionalities, including nitrogenated ones, similar to those found in a high volatile bituminous coal. The char was obtained by pyrolysis of the synthetic coal, up to 1123 K, under helium atmosphere in a fixed bed reactor. Char texture and structure were characterised by N{sub 2} and CO{sub 2} adsorption isotherms at 77 and 273 K, respectively, X-ray diffraction, immersion calorimetry in C{sub 6}H{sub 6} and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Temperature programmed reactions (TPR) were carried out in a thermogravimetric analyser using 400 ppm NO diluted in Ar as the reactant gas. The char was heated at 15 K min{sup -1} from room temperature to 1273 K. Gaseous products were simultaneously analysed by mass spectrometry (MS) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). The influence of nitrogen in the solid phase on the reduction mechanism was evaluated by comparing the results for chars with and without nitrogen in their composition. The results of this preliminary study showed that the presence of nitrogen in the chars composition did not favour the heterogeneous NO reduction. In addition, low temperature NO chemisorption on the carbon surface creates complexes that take an active part in the subsequent reactions with NO. 5 refs., 4 figs., 3 tabs.

  8. Synthetic Microwave Imaging Reflectometry diagnostic using 3D FDTD Simulations (United States)

    Kruger, Scott; Jenkins, Thomas; Smithe, David; King, Jacob; Nimrod Team Team


    Microwave Imaging Reflectometry (MIR) has become a standard diagnostic for understanding tokamak edge perturbations, including the edge harmonic oscillations in QH mode operation. These long-wavelength perturbations are larger than the normal turbulent fluctuation levels and thus normal analysis of synthetic signals become more difficult. To investigate, we construct a synthetic MIR diagnostic for exploring density fluctuation amplitudes in the tokamak plasma edge by using the three-dimensional, full-wave FDTD code Vorpal. The source microwave beam for the diagnostic is generated and refelected at the cutoff surface that is distorted by 2D density fluctuations in the edge plasma. Synthetic imaging optics at the detector can be used to understand the fluctuation and background density profiles. We apply the diagnostic to understand the fluctuations in edge plasma density during QH-mode activity in the DIII-D tokamak, as modeled by the NIMROD code. This work was funded under DOE Grant Number DE-FC02-08ER54972.

  9. A living foundry for Synthetic Biological Materials: A synthetic biology roadmap to new advanced materials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosalind A. Le Feuvre


    Full Text Available Society is on the cusp of harnessing recent advances in synthetic biology to discover new bio-based products and routes to their affordable and sustainable manufacture. This is no more evident than in the discovery and manufacture of Synthetic Biological Materials, where synthetic biology has the capacity to usher in a new Materials from Biology era that will revolutionise the discovery and manufacture of innovative synthetic biological materials. These will encompass novel, smart, functionalised and hybrid materials for diverse applications whose discovery and routes to bio-production will be stimulated by the fusion of new technologies positioned across physical, digital and biological spheres. This article, which developed from an international workshop held in Manchester, United Kingdom, in 2017 [1], sets out to identify opportunities in the new materials from biology era. It considers requirements, early understanding and foresight of the challenges faced in delivering a Discovery to Manufacturing Pipeline for synthetic biological materials using synthetic biology approaches. This challenge spans the complete production cycle from intelligent and predictive design, fabrication, evaluation and production of synthetic biological materials to new ways of bringing these products to market. Pathway opportunities are identified that will help foster expertise sharing and infrastructure development to accelerate the delivery of a new generation of synthetic biological materials and the leveraging of existing investments in synthetic biology and advanced materials research to achieve this goal. Keywords: Synthetic biology, Materials, Biological materials, Biomaterials, Advanced materials

  10. [Progress in synthetic biology of "973 Funding Program" in China]. (United States)

    Chen, Guoqiang; Wang, Ying


    This paper reviews progresses made in China from 2011 in areas of "Synthetic Biology" supported by State Basic Research 973 Program. Till the end of 2014, 9 "synthetic biology" projects have been initiated with emphasis on "microbial manufactures" with the 973 Funding Program. Combined with the very recent launch of one project on "mammalian cell synthetic biology" and another on "plant synthetic biology", Chinese "synthetic biology" research reflects its focus on "manufactures" while not giving up efforts on "synthetic biology" of complex systems.

  11. CRISPR and the Rebirth of Synthetic Biology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heidari, Raheleh; Shaw, David Martin; Elger, Bernice Simone

    Emergence of novel genome engineering technologies such as clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR) has refocused attention on unresolved ethical complications of synthetic biology. Biosecurity concerns, deontological issues and human right aspects of genome editing have

  12. Thermodynamic Analysis of Ionic Compounds: Synthetic Applications. (United States)

    Yoder, Claude H.


    Shows how thermodynamic cycles can be used to understand trends in heats of formation and aqueous solubilities and, most importantly, how they may be used to choose synthetic routes to new ionic compounds. (JN)

  13. Synthetic biology platform technologies for antimicrobial applications. (United States)

    Braff, Dana; Shis, David; Collins, James J


    The growing prevalence of antibiotic resistance calls for new approaches in the development of antimicrobial therapeutics. Likewise, improved diagnostic measures are essential in guiding the application of targeted therapies and preventing the evolution of therapeutic resistance. Discovery platforms are also needed to form new treatment strategies and identify novel antimicrobial agents. By applying engineering principles to molecular biology, synthetic biologists have developed platforms that improve upon, supplement, and will perhaps supplant traditional broad-spectrum antibiotics. Efforts in engineering bacteriophages and synthetic probiotics demonstrate targeted antimicrobial approaches that can be fine-tuned using synthetic biology-derived principles. Further, the development of paper-based, cell-free expression systems holds promise in promoting the clinical translation of molecular biology tools for diagnostic purposes. In this review, we highlight emerging synthetic biology platform technologies that are geared toward the generation of new antimicrobial therapies, diagnostics, and discovery channels. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Synthetic Sediments and Stochastic Groundwater Hydrology (United States)

    Wilson, J. L.


    For over twenty years the groundwater community has pursued the somewhat elusive goal of describing the effects of aquifer heterogeneity on subsurface flow and chemical transport. While small perturbation stochastic moment methods have significantly advanced theoretical understanding, why is it that stochastic applications use instead simulations of flow and transport through multiple realizations of synthetic geology? Allan Gutjahr was a principle proponent of the Fast Fourier Transform method for the synthetic generation of aquifer properties and recently explored new, more geologically sound, synthetic methods based on multi-scale Markov random fields. Focusing on sedimentary aquifers, how has the state-of-the-art of synthetic generation changed and what new developments can be expected, for example, to deal with issues like conceptual model uncertainty, the differences between measurement and modeling scales, and subgrid scale variability? What will it take to get stochastic methods, whether based on moments, multiple realizations, or some other approach, into widespread application?

  15. Philosophy of Systems and Synthetic Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Green, Sara


    This entry aims to clarify how systems and synthetic biology contribute to and extend discussions within philosophy of science. Unlike fields such as developmental biology or molecular biology, systems and synthetic biology are not easily demarcated by a focus on a specific subject area or level...... of organization. Rather, they are characterized by the development and application of mathematical, computational, and synthetic modeling strategies in response to complex problems and challenges within the life sciences. Proponents of systems and synthetic biology often stress the necessity of a perspective...... that goes beyond the scope of molecular biology and genetic engineering, respectively. With the emphasis on systems and interaction networks, the approaches explicitly engage in one of the oldest philosophical discussions on the relationship between parts and wholes, or between reductionism and holism...

  16. Defining the Synthetic Biology Supply Chain. (United States)

    Frazar, Sarah L; Hund, Gretchen E; Bonheyo, George T; Diggans, James; Bartholomew, Rachel A; Gehrig, Lindsey; Greaves, Mark

    Several recent articles have described risks posed by synthetic biology and spurred vigorous discussion in the scientific, commercial, and government communities about how to best detect, prevent, regulate, and respond to these risks. The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory's (PNNL) deep experience working with dual-use technologies for the nuclear industry has shown that analysis of supply chains can reveal security vulnerabilities and ways to mitigate security risk without hindering beneficial research and commerce. In this article, a team of experts in synthetic biology, data analytics, and national security describe the overall supply chain surrounding synthetic biology to illustrate new insights about the effectiveness of current regulations, the possible need for different screening approaches, and new technical solutions that could help identify or mitigate risks in the synthetic biology supply chain.

  17. RADARSAT-1 synthetic aperture radar analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Simecek-Beatty, D. [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Adminstration, National Ocean Service, Seattle, WA (United States). Office of Response and Restoration; Pichel, W.G. [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Environmental Satellite, Data and Information Service, Camp Springs, MD (United States). Office of Research and Applications


    The M/V Selendang Ayu grounded off Unalaska Island in Alaska on December 8, 2004, and spilled over 1270 m{sup 3} of oil and an unknown quantity of soybeans. The freighter grounded nearshore in a high-wave energy zone along a remote and rugged coastline, a terrain which can cause difficulties for remote sensors in detecting oil slicks. In addition, guano, kelp beds, whale and fish sperm, and releases from fishing activities generated biogenic films on the sea surface that had a signature similar to that of petroleum films. RADARSAT-1 synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery was used as part of the response effort to assist in the pollution monitoring effort. This paper described the methodology and results of the RADARSAT-1 analysis. Detailed information on the spill response was reported daily, and provided an opportunity to compare field observations with RADARSAT-1 SAR imagery. Observers recorded observations onto electronic maps during 35 aerial surveillance flights. Fifty-seven incident reports describing the vessel status were also used for comparison. Using screening criteria for the favorable wind and wave conditions, 37 images were available for viewing the wreck, and 22 images were acceptable for oil slick viewing. Image analysis for the wreck suggested that the sensor has the resolution and capability to monitor a grounded freighter. Visual inspection of the images showed that SAR can capture changes in vessel status, such as the gradual sinking of the bow. However, SAR's oil slick detection capability was disappointing due to the significant number of biogenic films in the nearshore areas of Alaska. It was concluded that future work should concentrate on developing a ranking system to indicate analysis confidence that a particular image does in fact contain a petroleum pocket. 25 refs., 2 tabs., 10 figs.

  18. Mathematical Problems in Synthetic Aperture Radar (United States)

    Klein, Jens


    This thesis is concerned with problems related to Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR). The thesis is structured as follows: The first chapter explains what SAR is, and the physical and mathematical background is illuminated. The following chapter points out a problem with a divergent integral in a common approach and proposes an improvement. Numerical comparisons are shown that indicate that the improvements allow for a superior image quality. Thereafter the problem of limited data is analyzed. In a realistic SAR-measurement the data gathered from the electromagnetic waves reflected from the surface can only be collected from a limited area. However the reconstruction formula requires data from an infinite distance. The chapter gives an analysis of the artifacts which can obscure the reconstructed images due to this problem. Additionally, some numerical examples are shown that point to the severity of the problem. In chapter 4 the fact that data is available only from a limited area is used to propose a new inversion formula. This inversion formula has the potential to make it easier to suppress artifacts due to limited data and, depending on the application, can be refined to a fast reconstruction formula. In the penultimate chapter a solution to the problem of left-right ambiguity is presented. This problem exists since the invention of SAR and is caused by the geometry of the measurements. This leads to the fact that only symmetric images can be obtained. With the solution from this chapter it is possible to reconstruct not only the even part of the reflectivity function, but also the odd part, thus making it possible to reconstruct asymmetric images. Numerical simulations are shown to demonstrate that this solution is not affected by stability problems as other approaches have been. The final chapter develops some continuative ideas that could be pursued in the future.

  19. To Investigate the Absorption, Dynamic Contact Angle and Printability Effects of Synthetic Zeolite Pigments in an Inkjet Receptive Coating (United States)

    Jalindre, Swaraj Sunil

    Ink absorption performance in inkjet receptive coatings containing synthetic zeolite pigments was studied. Coating pigment pore and particle size distribution are the key parameters that influence in modifying media surface properties, thus affecting the rate of ink penetration and drying time (Scholkopf, et al. 2004). The primary objective of this study was: (1) to investigate the synthetic zeolite pigment effects on inkjet ink absorption, dynamic contact angle and printability, and (2) to evaluate these novel synthetic zeolite pigments in replacing the fumed silica pigments in conventional inkjet receptive coatings. In this research study, single pigment coating formulations (in equal P:B ratio) were prepared using microporous synthetic zeolite pigments (5A, Organophilic and 13X) and polyvinyl alcohol (PVOH) binder. The laboratory-coated samples were characterized for absorption, air permeance, roughness, drying time, wettability and print fidelity. Based on the rheological data, it was found that the synthetic zeolite formulated coatings depicted a Newtonian flow behavior at low shear; while the industry accepted fumed silica based coatings displayed a characteristically high pseudoplastic flow behavior. Our coated samples generated using microporous synthetic zeolite pigments produced low absorption, reduced wettability and accelerated ink drying characteristics. These characteristics were caused due to the synthetic zeolite pigments, which resulted in relatively closed surface structure coated samples. The research suggested that no single selected synthetic zeolite coating performed better than the conventional fumed silica based coatings. Experimental data also showed that there was no apparent relationship between synthetic zeolite pigment pore sizes and inkjet ink absorption. For future research, above coated samples should be evaluated for pore size distribution using Mercury Porosimeter, which quantifies surface porosity of coated samples. This presented

  20. Synthetic Sling Failure - Evaluations and Recommendations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Henderson, C. S. [Washington River Protection Solutions, Richland, WA (United States); Mackey, Thomas C. [Washington River Protection Solutions, Richland, WA (United States)


    The information and evaluations provided in this report were compiled to address the recurring problem of synthetic sling failure. As safety is the number one priority in all work aspects, a solution must be devised to prevent accidents from occurring. A total of thirteen cases regarding synthetic sling failure were evaluated in order to determine their causes, effects, and preventative measures. From the collected data, it was found that all cases in which the synthetic sling contacted the edge of its load resulted in sling failure. It is required that adequate synthetic sling protection devices be used to protect slings in any lift where the sling comes in direct contact with the edge or corner of its load. However, there are no consensus codes or standards stating the type, material, or purpose of the type of protective device used to protect the sling from being cut. Numerous industry standards and codes provide vague descriptions on how to protect synthetic slings. Without a clear, concise statement of how to protect synthetic slings, it is common for inadequate materials and sling protection devices to be used in an attempt to meet the intent of these requirements. The use of an inadequate sling protection device is the main cause of synthetic sling failure in all researched cases. Commercial sling protection devices come in many shapes and sizes, and have a variety of names, as well as advertised uses. 'Abrasion pads' and 'wear protectors' are two different names for products with the same intended purpose. There is no distinguishable way to determine the extent of sling protection which these devices will provide, or what specific scenarios they are made for. This creates room for error in a field where error is unacceptable. This report provides a recommended action for hoisting and rigging activities which require synthetic slings to contact a load, as well as recommended changes to industry standards which will benefit overall

  1. The Synthetic Biology Open Language (SBOL) provides a community standard for communicating designs in synthetic biology. (United States)

    Galdzicki, Michal; Clancy, Kevin P; Oberortner, Ernst; Pocock, Matthew; Quinn, Jacqueline Y; Rodriguez, Cesar A; Roehner, Nicholas; Wilson, Mandy L; Adam, Laura; Anderson, J Christopher; Bartley, Bryan A; Beal, Jacob; Chandran, Deepak; Chen, Joanna; Densmore, Douglas; Endy, Drew; Grünberg, Raik; Hallinan, Jennifer; Hillson, Nathan J; Johnson, Jeffrey D; Kuchinsky, Allan; Lux, Matthew; Misirli, Goksel; Peccoud, Jean; Plahar, Hector A; Sirin, Evren; Stan, Guy-Bart; Villalobos, Alan; Wipat, Anil; Gennari, John H; Myers, Chris J; Sauro, Herbert M


    The re-use of previously validated designs is critical to the evolution of synthetic biology from a research discipline to an engineering practice. Here we describe the Synthetic Biology Open Language (SBOL), a proposed data standard for exchanging designs within the synthetic biology community. SBOL represents synthetic biology designs in a community-driven, formalized format for exchange between software tools, research groups and commercial service providers. The SBOL Developers Group has implemented SBOL as an XML/RDF serialization and provides software libraries and specification documentation to help developers implement SBOL in their own software. We describe early successes, including a demonstration of the utility of SBOL for information exchange between several different software tools and repositories from both academic and industrial partners. As a community-driven standard, SBOL will be updated as synthetic biology evolves to provide specific capabilities for different aspects of the synthetic biology workflow.

  2. Parameterization experiments performed via synthetic mass movements prototypes generated by 3D slope stability simulator (United States)

    Colangelo, Antonio C.


    The central purpose of this work is to perform a reverse procedure in the mass movement conventional parameterization approach. The idea is to generate a number of synthetic mass movements by means of the "slope stability simulator" (Colangelo, 2007), and compeer their morphological and physical properties with "real" conditions of effective mass movements. This device is an integrated part of "relief unity emulator" (rue), that permits generate synthetic mass movements in a synthetic slope environment. The "rue" was build upon fundamental geomorphological concepts. These devices operate with an integrated set of mechanical, geomorphic and hydrological models. The "slope stability simulator" device (sss) permits to perform a detailed slope stability analysis in a theoretical three dimensional space, by means of evaluation the spatial behavior of critical depths, gradients and saturation levels in the "potential rupture surfaces" inferred along a set of slope profiles, that compounds a synthetic slope unity. It's a meta-stable 4-dimensional object generated by means of "rue", that represents a sequence evolution of a generator profile applied here, was adapted the infinite slope model for slope. Any slope profiles were sliced by means of finite element solution like in Bishop method. For the synthetic slope systems generated, we assume that the potential rupture surface occurs at soil-regolith or soil-rock boundary in slope material. Sixteen variables were included in the "rue-sss" device that operates in an integrated manner. For each cell, the factor of safety was calculated considering the value of shear strength (cohesion and friction) of material, soil-regolith boundary depth, soil moisture level content, potential rupture surface gradient, slope surface gradient, top of subsurface flow gradient, apparent soil bulk density and vegetation surcharge. The slope soil was considered as cohesive material. The 16 variables incorporated in the models were analyzed for

  3. Synthetic Biology and the Translational Imperative. (United States)

    Heidari Feidt, Raheleh; Ienca, Marcello; Elger, Bernice Simone; Folcher, Marc


    Advances at the interface between the biological sciences and engineering are giving rise to emerging research fields such as synthetic biology. Harnessing the potential of synthetic biology requires timely and adequate translation into clinical practice. However, the translational research enterprise is currently facing fundamental obstacles that slow down the transition of scientific discoveries from the laboratory to the patient bedside. These obstacles including scarce financial resources and deficiency of organizational and logistic settings are widely discussed as primary impediments to translational research. In addition, a number of socio-ethical considerations inherent in translational research need to be addressed. As the translational capacity of synthetic biology is tightly linked to its social acceptance and ethical approval, ethical limitations may-together with financial and organizational problems-be co-determinants of suboptimal translation. Therefore, an early assessment of such limitations will contribute to proactively favor successful translation and prevent the promising potential of synthetic biology from remaining under-expressed. Through the discussion of two case-specific inventions in synthetic biology and their associated ethical implications, we illustrate the socio-ethical challenges ahead in the process of implementing synthetic biology into clinical practice. Since reducing the translational lag is essential for delivering the benefits of basic biomedical research to society at large and promoting global health, we advocate a moral obligation to accelerating translational research: the "translational imperative."

  4. Synthetic biology era: Improving antibiotic's world. (United States)

    Guzmán-Trampe, Silvia; Ceapa, Corina D; Manzo-Ruiz, Monserrat; Sánchez, Sergio


    The emergence of antibiotic-resistant pathogen microorganisms is problematic in the context of the current spectrum of available medication. The poor specificity and the high toxicity of some available molecules have made imperative the search for new strategies to improve the specificity and to pursue the discovery of novel compounds with increased bioactivity. Using living cells as platforms, synthetic biology has counteracted this problem by offering novel pathways to create synthetic systems with improved and desired functions. Among many other biotechnological approaches, the advances in synthetic biology have made it possible to design and construct novel biological systems in order to look for new drugs with increased bioactivity. Advancements have also been made in the redesigning of RNA and DNA molecules in order to engineer antibiotic clusters for antibiotic overexpression. As for the production of these antibacterial compounds, yeasts and filamentous fungi as well as gene therapy are utilized to enhance protein solubility. Specific delivery is achieved by creating chimeras using plant genes into bacterial hosts. Some of these synthetic systems are currently in clinical trials, proving the proficiency of synthetic biology in terms of both pharmacological activities as well as an increase in the biosafety of treatments. It is possible that we may just be seeing the tip of the iceberg, and synthetic biology applications will overpass expectations beyond our present knowledge. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  5. Synthetic cannabis and acute ischemic stroke. (United States)

    Bernson-Leung, Miya E; Leung, Lester Y; Kumar, Sandeep


    An association between marijuana use and stroke has been previously reported. However, the health risks of newer synthetic cannabinoid compounds are less well known. We describe 2 cases that introduce a previously unreported association between synthetic cannabis use and ischemic stroke in young adults. A 22-year-old woman presented with dysarthria, left hemiplegia, and left hemianesthesia within hours of first use of synthetic cannabis. She was healthy and without identified stroke risk factors other than oral contraceptive use and a patent foramen ovale without venous thromboses. A 26-year-old woman presented with nonfluent aphasia, left facial droop, and left hemianesthesia approximately 12 hours after first use of synthetic cannabis. Her other stroke risk factors included migraine with aura, oral contraceptive use, smoking, and a family history of superficial thrombophlebitis. Both women were found to have acute, large-territory infarctions of the right middle cerebral artery. Our 2 cases had risk factors for ischemic stroke but were otherwise young and healthy and the onset of their deficits occurred within hours after first-time exposure to synthetic cannabis. Synthetic cannabis use is an important consideration in the investigation of stroke in young adults. Copyright © 2014 National Stroke Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. A living foundry for Synthetic Biological Materials: A synthetic biology roadmap to new advanced materials. (United States)

    Le Feuvre, Rosalind A; Scrutton, Nigel S


    Society is on the cusp of harnessing recent advances in synthetic biology to discover new bio-based products and routes to their affordable and sustainable manufacture. This is no more evident than in the discovery and manufacture of Synthetic Biological Materials , where synthetic biology has the capacity to usher in a new Materials from Biology era that will revolutionise the discovery and manufacture of innovative synthetic biological materials. These will encompass novel, smart, functionalised and hybrid materials for diverse applications whose discovery and routes to bio-production will be stimulated by the fusion of new technologies positioned across physical, digital and biological spheres. This article, which developed from an international workshop held in Manchester, United Kingdom, in 2017 [1], sets out to identify opportunities in the new materials from biology era. It considers requirements, early understanding and foresight of the challenges faced in delivering a Discovery to Manufacturing Pipeline for synthetic biological materials using synthetic biology approaches. This challenge spans the complete production cycle from intelligent and predictive design, fabrication, evaluation and production of synthetic biological materials to new ways of bringing these products to market. Pathway opportunities are identified that will help foster expertise sharing and infrastructure development to accelerate the delivery of a new generation of synthetic biological materials and the leveraging of existing investments in synthetic biology and advanced materials research to achieve this goal.

  7. Dynamic testing of horseshoe designs at impact on synthetic and dirt Thoroughbred racetrack materials. (United States)

    Mahaffey, C A; Peterson, M L; Thomason, J J; McIlwraith, C W


    Different horseshoe designs have been developed in an attempt to optimise footing for equine athletes. Horseshoe performance is assumed to be dependent on the surface and gait, but there are limited data on horseshoe performance on different surfaces, independent of gait variation. To quantify the dynamic loading for 3 aluminium racing shoe designs on Thoroughbred racetrack surface materials, using a biomechanical surface tester. A flat racing plate, a serrated V-Grip and a shoe with a 6 mm toe grab and 10 mm heel calks were tested on synthetic and dirt surfaces under typical operating conditions of temperature and moisture content for the respective material samples. Samples were tested under laboratory conditions, replicating a track surface by compacting material into a latex-lined mould surrounded by silica sand for representative boundary conditions. Peak loading and loading rates were measured vertically and horizontally (craniocaudal), simulating aspects of primary and secondary impacts of the hoof in a galloping horse. Maximum vertical and shear loads and loading rates were not significantly different between shoe types, with the exception of a reduced craniocaudal loading rate for the V-Grip shoe on the synthetic surface. All other statistical significance was related to the surface material. These 3 different Thoroughbred racing shoes do not have a significant impact on loading and loading rate, with the exception of the V-Grip shoe on a synthetic surface. Although the V-Grip may reduce craniocaudal peak load rates in a synthetic material with relatively high wax and/or low oil content, the reduction in load rate is less than the difference found between materials. This study indicates that shoeing has little effect, and that a track's surface material and its preparation have a significant effect on the dynamic loading during the impact phase of the stance. © 2015 EVJ Ltd.

  8. Synthetic bedding and wheeze in childhood. (United States)

    Ponsonby, Anne-Louise; Dwyer, Terence; Kemp, Andrew; Cochrane, Jennifer; Couper, David; Carmichael, Allan


    The reasons for the increase in childhood asthma over time are unclear. The indoor environment is of particular concern. An adverse role for synthetic bedding on asthma development in childhood has been suggested by cross-sectional studies that have found an association between synthetic pillow use and childhood wheeze. Prospective data on infant bedding have not been available. Bedding data at 1 month of age were available from an infant survey for children who were participating in a 1995 follow-up study (N = 863; 78% traced). The 1995 follow-up was embedded in a larger cross-sectional survey involving 6,378 seven year olds in Tasmania (N = 92% of eligible). Outcome measures included respiratory symptoms as defined in the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood protocol. Frequent wheeze was defined as more than 12 wheeze episodes over the past year compared with no wheeze. Synthetic pillow use at 1 month of age was associated with frequent wheeze at age 7 (adjusted relative risk [aRR] = 2.5; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.2-5.5) independent of childhood exposure. Current synthetic pillow and quilt use was strongly associated with frequent wheeze (aRR = 5.2; CI = 1.3-20.6). Substantial trends were evident for an association of increasing number of synthetic bedding items with frequent wheeze and with increasing wheeze frequency. Among children with asthma, the age of onset of asthma occurred earlier if synthetic bedding was used in infancy. In this cohort, synthetic bedding was strongly and consistently associated with frequent childhood wheeze. The association did not appear to be attributable to bedding choice as part of an asthma management strategy.

  9. Exploration of Piezoelectric Bimorph Deflection in Synthetic Jet Actuators (United States)

    Housley, Kevin; Amitay, Michael


    The design of piezoelectric bimorphs for synthetic jet actuators could be improved by greater understanding of the deflection of the bimorphs; both their mode shapes and the resulting volume change inside the actuator. The velocity performance of synthetic jet actuators is dependent on this volume change and the associated internal pressure changes. Knowledge of these could aid in refining the geometry of the cavity to improve efficiency. Phase-locked jet velocities and maps of displacement of the surface of the bimorph were compared between actuators of varying diameter. Results from a bimorph of alternate stiffness were also compared. Bimorphs with higher stiffness exhibited a more desirable (0,1) mode shape, which produced a high volume change inside of the actuator cavity. Those with lower stiffness allowed for greater displacement of the surface, initially increasing the volume change, but exhibited higher mode shapes at certain frequency ranges. These higher node shapes sharply reduced the volume change and negatively impacted the velocity of the jet at those frequencies. Adjustments to the distribution of stiffness along the radius of the bimorph could prevent this and allow for improved deflection without the risk of reaching higher modes.

  10. Biomimicking micropatterned surfaces and their effect on marine biofouling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brzozowska, Agata M.; Parra-Velandia, Fernando J.; Quintana, Robert; Xiaoying, Zhu; Lee, Serina Siew Chen; Chin-Sing, Lim; Jańczewski, Dominik; Teo, Serena Lay Ming; Vancso, Julius G.


    When synthetic materials are submerged in marine environments, dissolved matter and marine organisms attach to their surfaces by a process known as marine fouling. This phenomenon may lead to diminished material performance with detrimental consequences. Bioinspired surface patterning and chemical

  11. 'Synthetic lipase' production from a newly isolated Sporidiobolus pararoseus strain by submerged fermentation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandra Smaniotto


    Full Text Available The lipase produced by a newly isolate Sporidiobolus pararoseus strain has potential catalysis ability for esterification reactions. In order to improve its synthetic activity, this work aimed at optimizing 'synthetic lipase' production by submerged fermentation of a conventional media based on peptone, yeast extract, NaCl and olive oil using experimental design technique. According to the results obtained in the first experimental design (2(4-1, yeast extract and NaCl concentrations were tested to further optimization by response surface methodology. The maximum 'synthetic lipase' activity obtained was 26.9 U/mL in the optimized media (5.0, 6.8, 7.0 and 1.0% (wt/v of peptone, yeast extract, NaCl and olive oil, respectively, representing a 6.36-fold increase compared to the initial medium. The time course of 'synthetic lipase' production in the optimized condition was evaluated in terms of synthetic activity, protease activity, biomass and total carbon and the maximum synthetic activity was observed during the stationary phase of growth.

  12. 21 CFR 73.1200 - Synthetic iron oxide. (United States)


    ... 21 Food and Drugs 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Synthetic iron oxide. 73.1200 Section 73.1200 Food... COLOR ADDITIVES EXEMPT FROM CERTIFICATION Drugs § 73.1200 Synthetic iron oxide. (a) Identity. (1) The color additive synthetic iron oxide consists of any one or any combination of synthetically prepared...

  13. 21 CFR 73.200 - Synthetic iron oxide. (United States)


    ... 21 Food and Drugs 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Synthetic iron oxide. 73.200 Section 73.200 Food... COLOR ADDITIVES EXEMPT FROM CERTIFICATION Foods § 73.200 Synthetic iron oxide. (a) Identity. (1) The color additive synthetic iron oxide consists of any one or any combination of synthetically prepared...

  14. 21 CFR 172.888 - Synthetic petroleum wax. (United States)


    ... 21 Food and Drugs 3 2010-04-01 2009-04-01 true Synthetic petroleum wax. 172.888 Section 172.888... CONSUMPTION Multipurpose Additives § 172.888 Synthetic petroleum wax. Synthetic petroleum wax may be safely used in or on foods in accordance with the following conditions: (a) Synthetic petroleum wax is a...

  15. Molecular characterisation and the protective immunity evaluation of Eimeria maxima surface antigen gene. (United States)

    Liu, Tingqi; Huang, Jingwei; Li, Yanlin; Ehsan, Muhammad; Wang, Shuai; Zhou, Zhouyang; Song, Xiaokai; Yan, Ruofeng; Xu, Lixin; Li, Xiangrui


    Coccidiosis is recognised as a major parasitic disease in chickens. Eimeria maxima is considered as a highly immunoprotective species within the Eimeria spp. family that infects chickens. In the present research, the surface antigen gene of E. maxima (EmSAG) was cloned, and the ability of EmSAG to stimulate protection against E. maxima was evaluated. Prokaryotic and eukaryotic plasmids expressing EmSAG were constructed. The EmSAG transcription and expression in vivo was performed based on the RT-PCR and immunoblot analysis. The expression of EmSAG in sporozoites and merozoites was detected through immunofluorescence analyses. The immune protection was assessed based on challenge experiments. Flow cytometry assays were used to determine the T cell subpopulations. The serum antibody and cytokine levels were evaluated by ELISA. The open reading frame (ORF) of EmSAG gene contained 645 bp encoding 214 amino acid residues. The immunoblot and RT-PCR analyses indicated that the EmSAG gene were transcribed and expressed in vivo. The EmSAG proteins were expressed in sporozoite and merozoite stages of E. maxima by the immunofluorescence assay. Challenge experiments showed that both pVAX1-SAG and the recombinant EmSAG (rEmSAG) proteins were successful in alleviating jejunal lesions, decreasing loss of body weight and the oocyst ratio. Additionally, these experiments possessed anticoccidial indices (ACI) of more than 170. Higher percentages of CD4 + and CD8 + T cells were detected in both EmSAG-inoculated birds than those of the negative control groups (P maxima.

  16. Synthetic biology and the technicity of biofuels. (United States)

    Mackenzie, Adrian


    The principal existing real-world application of synthetic biology is biofuels. Several 'next generation biofuel' companies-Synthetic Genomics, Amyris and Joule Unlimited Technologies-claim to be using synthetic biology to make biofuels. The irony of this is that highly advanced science and engineering serves the very mundane and familiar realm of transport. Despite their rather prosaic nature, biofuels could offer an interesting way to highlight the novelty of synthetic biology from several angles at once. Drawing on the French philosopher of technology and biology Gilbert Simondon, we can understand biofuels as technical objects whose genesis involves processes of concretisation that negotiate between heterogeneous geographical, biological, technical, scientific and commercial realities. Simondon's notion of technicity, the degree of concretisation of a technical object, usefully conceptualises this relationality. Viewed in terms of technicity, we might understand better how technical entities, elements, and ensembles are coming into being in the name of synthetic biology. The broader argument here is that when we seek to identify the newness of disciplines, their newness might be less epistemic and more logistic. Crown Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. WISB: Warwick Integrative Synthetic Biology Centre. (United States)

    McCarthy, John


    Synthetic biology promises to create high-impact solutions to challenges in the areas of biotechnology, human/animal health, the environment, energy, materials and food security. Equally, synthetic biologists create tools and strategies that have the potential to help us answer important fundamental questions in biology. Warwick Integrative Synthetic Biology (WISB) pursues both of these mutually complementary 'build to apply' and 'build to understand' approaches. This is reflected in our research structure, in which a core theme on predictive biosystems engineering develops underpinning understanding as well as next-generation experimental/theoretical tools, and these are then incorporated into three applied themes in which we engineer biosynthetic pathways, microbial communities and microbial effector systems in plants. WISB takes a comprehensive approach to training, education and outreach. For example, WISB is a partner in the EPSRC/BBSRC-funded U.K. Doctoral Training Centre in synthetic biology, we have developed a new undergraduate module in the subject, and we have established five WISB Research Career Development Fellowships to support young group leaders. Research in Ethical, Legal and Societal Aspects (ELSA) of synthetic biology is embedded in our centre activities. WISB has been highly proactive in building an international research and training network that includes partners in Barcelona, Boston, Copenhagen, Madrid, Marburg, São Paulo, Tartu and Valencia. © 2016 The Author(s).

  18. Synthetic cathinones: a new public health problem. (United States)

    Karila, Laurent; Megarbane, Bruno; Cottencin, Olivier; Lejoyeux, Michel


    New psychoactive substances (NPS) have completely modified the drug scene and the current landscape of addiction. Synthetic substances, such as substituted or synthetic cathinones, also known as « legal highs », are often produced and used to mimic the effects of controlled drugs such as cocaine, methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, ecstasy), and methamphetamine. The overwhelming majority of synthetic cathinones are produced in China and South East Asian countries. The Internet has emerged as the new marketplace for NPS, playing a major role in providing information on acquisition, synthesis, extraction, identification, and substance use. All these compounds are intentionally mislabeled and sold on-line under slang terms such as bath salts, plant food, plant feeders and research chemicals. They are sometimes labeled « not for human use » or « not tested for hazards or toxicity ». The rapid spread of NPS forces member countries of the European Union to adapt their response to the potential new dangers that may cause. To date, not only health actors but also the general public need to be clearly informed and aware of dangers resulting from NPS spread and use. Here, we review the major clinical effects of synthetic cathinones to highlight their impact on public health. A literature search was conducted from 2009 to 2014 based on PubMed, Google Scholar, Erowid, and governmental websites, using the following keywords alone or in combination: "new psychoactive substances", "synthetic cathinones", "substituted cathinones", "mephedrone", "methylone", "MDPV", "4-MEC", "addiction", and "substance use disorder".

  19. Rheological characteristics of synthetic road binders

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gordon D. Airey; Musarrat H. Mohammed; Caroline Fichter [University of Nottingham, Nottingham (United Kingdom)


    This paper deals with the synthesis of polymer binders from monomers that could in future be derived from renewable resources. These binders consist of polyethyl acrylate (PEA) of different molecular weight, polymethyl acrylate (PMA) and polybutyl acrylate (PBA), which were synthesised from ethyl acrylate, methyl acrylate and butyl acrylate, respectively, by atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). The fundamental rheological properties of these binders were determined by means of a dynamic shear rheometer (DSR) using a combination of temperature and frequency sweeps. The results indicate that PEA has rheological properties similar to that of 100/150 penetration grade bitumen, PMA similar rheological properties to that of 10/20 penetration grade bitumen, while PBA, due to its highly viscous nature and low complex modulus, cannot be used on its own as an asphalt binder. The synthetic binders were also combined with conventional penetration grade bitumen to produce a range of bitumen-synthetic polymer binder blends. These blends were batched by mass in the ratio of 1:1 or 3:1 and subjected to the same DSR rheological testing as the synthetic binders. The blends consisting of a softer bitumen (70/100 pen or 100/150 pen) with a hard synthetic binder (PMA) tended to be more compatible and therefore stable and produced rheological properties that combined the properties of the two components. The synthetic binders and particularly the extended bitumen samples (blends) produced rheological properties that showed similar characteristics to elastomeric SBS PMBs. 30 refs., 12 figs., 2 tabs.

  20. [Treatment approaches for synthetic drug addiction]. (United States)

    Kobayashi, Ohji


    In Japan, synthetic drugs have emerged since late 2000s, and cases of emergency visits and fatal traffic accidents due to acute intoxication have rapidly increased. The synthetic drugs gained popularity mainly because they were cheap and thought to be "legal". The Japanese government restricted not only production and distribution, but also its possession and use in April 2014. As the synthetic drug dependent patients have better social profiles compared to methamphetamine abusers, this legal sanction may have triggered the decrease in the number of synthetic drug dependent patient visits observed at Kanagawa Psychiatric Center since July 2014. Treatment of the synthetic drug dependent patients should begin with empathic inquiry into the motives and positive psychological effects of the drug use. In the maintenance phase, training patients to trust others and express their hidden negative emotions through verbal communications is essential. The recovery is a process of understanding the relationship between psychological isolation and drug abuse, and gaining trust in others to cope with negative emotions that the patients inevitably would face in their subsequent lives.

  1. Role of Synthetic and Dimensional Synthetic Organic Chemistry in Block Copolymer Micelle Nanosensor Engineering

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ek, Pramod Kumar

    This thesis investigated the role of amphiphilic triblock copolymer micelle nanomaterials in nanosensors, with emphasis on the synthesis of micelle particle sensors. The thesis is focused on the role of synthetic and dimensional synthetic organic chemistry in amphiphilic triblock core-shellcorona...

  2. Comparative Study of the Electrochemical, Biomedical, and Thermal Properties of Natural and Synthetic Nanomaterials (United States)

    Ghaemi, Ferial; Abdullah, Luqman Chuah; Kargarzadeh, Hanieh; Abdi, Mahnaz M.; Azli, Nur Farhana Waheeda Mohd; Abbasian, Maryam


    In this research, natural nanomaterials including cellulose nanocrystal (CNC), nanofiber cellulose (NFC), and synthetic nanoparticles such as carbon nanofiber (CNF) and carbon nanotube (CNT) with different structures, sizes, and surface areas were produced and analyzed. The most significant contribution of this study is to evaluate and compare these nanomaterials based on the effects of their structures and morphologies on their electrochemical, biomedical, and thermal properties. Based on the obtained results, the natural nanomaterials with low dimension and surface area have zero cytotoxicity effects on the living cells at 12.5 and 3.125 μg/ml concentrations of NFC and CNC, respectively. Meanwhile, synthetic nanomaterials with the high surface area around 15.3-21.1 m2/g and significant thermal stability (480 °C-600 °C) enhance the output of electrode by creating a higher surface area and decreasing the current flow resistance.

  3. [Applications of synthetic biology in materials science]. (United States)

    Zhao, Tianxin; Zhong, Chao


    Materials are the basis for human being survival and social development. To keep abreast with the increasing needs from all aspects of human society, there are huge needs in the development of advanced materials as well as high-efficiency but low-cost manufacturing strategies that are both sustainable and tunable. Synthetic biology, a new engineering principle taking gene regulation and engineering design as the core, greatly promotes the development of life sciences. This discipline has also contributed to the development of material sciences and will continuously bring new ideas to future new material design. In this paper, we review recent advances in applications of synthetic biology in material sciences, with the focus on how synthetic biology could enable synthesis of new polymeric biomaterials and inorganic materials, phage display and directed evolution of proteins relevant to materials development, living functional materials, engineered bacteria-regulated artificial photosynthesis system as well as applications of gene circuits for material sciences.

  4. Tunable promoters in synthetic and systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dehli, Tore; Solem, Christian; Jensen, Peter Ruhdal


    in synthetic biology. A number of tools exist to manipulate the steps in between gene sequence and functional protein in living cells, but out of these the most straight-forward approach is to alter the gene expression level by manipulating the promoter sequence. Some of the promoter tuning tools available......Synthetic and systems biologists need standardized, modular and orthogonal tools yielding predictable functions in vivo. In systems biology such tools are needed to quantitatively analyze the behavior of biological systems while the efficient engineering of artificial gene networks is central...... for accomplishing such altered gene expression levels are discussed here along with examples of their use, and ideas for new tools are described. The road ahead looks very promising for synthetic and systems biologists as tools to achieve just about anything in terms of tuning and timing multiple gene expression...

  5. Mammalian synthetic biology for studying the cell. (United States)

    Mathur, Melina; Xiang, Joy S; Smolke, Christina D


    Synthetic biology is advancing the design of genetic devices that enable the study of cellular and molecular biology in mammalian cells. These genetic devices use diverse regulatory mechanisms to both examine cellular processes and achieve precise and dynamic control of cellular phenotype. Synthetic biology tools provide novel functionality to complement the examination of natural cell systems, including engineered molecules with specific activities and model systems that mimic complex regulatory processes. Continued development of quantitative standards and computational tools will expand capacities to probe cellular mechanisms with genetic devices to achieve a more comprehensive understanding of the cell. In this study, we review synthetic biology tools that are being applied to effectively investigate diverse cellular processes, regulatory networks, and multicellular interactions. We also discuss current challenges and future developments in the field that may transform the types of investigation possible in cell biology. © 2017 Mathur et al.

  6. CSBB: synthetic biology research at Newcastle University. (United States)

    Goñi-Moreno, Angel; Wipat, Anil; Krasnogor, Natalio


    The Centre for Synthetic Biology and the Bioeconomy (CSBB) brings together a far-reaching multidisciplinary community across all Newcastle University's faculties - Medical Sciences, Science, Agriculture and Engineering, and Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences. The CSBB focuses on many different areas of Synthetic Biology, including bioprocessing, computational design and in vivo computation, as well as improving understanding of basic molecular machinery. Such breadth is supported by major national and international research funding, a range of industrial partners in the North East of England and beyond, as well as a large number of doctoral and post-doctoral researchers. The CSBB trains the next generation of scientists through a 1-year MSc in Synthetic Biology. © 2017 The Author(s).

  7. Is It Time for Synthetic Biodiversity Conservation? (United States)

    Piaggio, Antoinette J; Segelbacher, Gernot; Seddon, Philip J; Alphey, Luke; Bennett, Elizabeth L; Carlson, Robert H; Friedman, Robert M; Kanavy, Dona; Phelan, Ryan; Redford, Kent H; Rosales, Marina; Slobodian, Lydia; Wheeler, Keith


    Evidence indicates that, despite some critical successes, current conservation approaches are not slowing the overall rate of biodiversity loss. The field of synthetic biology, which is capable of altering natural genomes with extremely precise editing, might offer the potential to resolve some intractable conservation problems (e.g., invasive species or pathogens). However, it is our opinion that there has been insufficient engagement by the conservation community with practitioners of synthetic biology. We contend that rapid, large-scale engagement of these two communities is urgently needed to avoid unintended and deleterious ecological consequences. To this point we describe case studies where synthetic biology is currently being applied to conservation, and we highlight the benefits to conservation biologists from engaging with this emerging technology. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  8. Bioinspired Chemical Communication between Synthetic Nanomotors. (United States)

    Chen, Chuanrui; Chang, Xiaocong; Teymourian, Hazhir; Ramírez-Herrera, Doris E; Esteban-Fernández de Ávila, Berta; Lu, Xiaolong; Li, Jinxing; He, Sha; Fang, Chengcheng; Liang, Yuyan; Mou, Fangzhi; Guan, Jianguo; Wang, Joseph


    While chemical communication plays a key role in diverse natural processes, the intelligent chemical communication between synthetic nanomotors remains unexplored. The design and operation of bioinspired synthetic nanomotors is presented. Chemical communication between nanomotors is possible and has an influence on propulsion behavior. A chemical "message" is sent from a moving activator motor to a nearby activated (receiver) motor by release of Ag + ions from a Janus polystyrene/Ni/Au/Ag activator motor to the activated Janus SiO 2 /Pt nanomotor. The transmitted silver signal is translated rapidly into a dramatic speed change associated with the enhanced catalytic activity of activated motors. Selective and successive activation of multiple nanomotors is achieved by sequential localized chemical communications. The concept of establishing chemical communication between different synthetic nanomotors paves the way to intelligent nanoscale robotic systems that are capable of cooperating with each other. © 2018 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  9. Synthetic aperture tissue and flow ultrasound imaging

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nikolov, Svetoslav

    imaging applied to medical ultrasound. It is divided into two major parts: tissue and blood flow imaging. Tissue imaging using synthetic aperture algorithms has been investigated for about two decades, but has not been implemented in medical scanners yet. Among the other reasons, the conventional scanning...... and beamformation methods are adequate for the imaging modalities in clinical use - the B-mode imaging of tissue structures, and the color mapping of blood flow. The acquisition time, however, is too long, and these methods fail to perform real-time three-dimensional scans. The synthetic transmit aperture......, on the other hand, can create a Bmode image with as little as 2 emissions, thus significantly speeding-up the scan procedure. The first part of the dissertation describes the synthetic aperture tissue imaging. It starts with an overview of the efforts previously made by other research groups. A classification...

  10. Engineering emergent multicellular behavior through synthetic adhesion (United States)

    Glass, David; Riedel-Kruse, Ingmar

    In over a decade, synthetic biology has developed increasingly robust gene networks within single cells, but constructed very few systems that demonstrate multicellular spatio-temporal dynamics. We are filling this gap in synthetic biology's toolbox by developing an E. coli self-assembly platform based on modular cell-cell adhesion. We developed a system in which adhesive selectivity is provided by a library of outer membrane-displayed peptides with intra-library specificities, while affinity is provided by consistent expression across the entire library. We further provide a biophysical model to help understand the parameter regimes in which this tool can be used to self-assemble into cellular clusters, filaments, or meshes. The combined platform will enable future development of synthetic multicellular systems for use in consortia-based metabolic engineering, in living materials, and in controlled study of minimal multicellular systems. Stanford Bio-X Bowes Fellowship.

  11. Anisotropic evaluation of synthetic surgical meshes. (United States)

    Saberski, E R; Orenstein, S B; Novitsky, Y W


    The material properties of meshes used in hernia repair contribute to the overall mechanical behavior of the repair. The anisotropic potential of synthetic meshes, representing a difference in material properties (e.g., elasticity) in different material axes, is not well defined to date. Haphazard orientation of anisotropic mesh material can contribute to inconsistent surgical outcomes. We aimed to characterize and compare anisotropic properties of commonly used synthetic meshes. Six different polypropylene (Trelex(®), ProLite™, Ultrapro™), polyester (Parietex™), and PTFE-based (Dualmesh(®), Infinit) synthetic meshes were selected. Longitudinal and transverse axes were defined for each mesh, and samples were cut in each axis orientation. Samples underwent uniaxial tensile testing, from which the elastic modulus (E) in each axis was determined. The degree of anisotropy (λ) was calculated as a logarithmic expression of the ratio between the elastic modulus in each axis. Five of six meshes displayed significant anisotropic behavior. Ultrapro™ and Infinit exhibited approximately 12- and 20-fold differences between perpendicular axes, respectively. Trelex(®), ProLite™, and Parietex™ were 2.3-2.4 times. Dualmesh(®) was the least anisotropic mesh, without marked difference between the axes. Anisotropy of synthetic meshes has been underappreciated. In this study, we found striking differences between elastic properties of perpendicular axes for most commonly used synthetic meshes. Indiscriminate orientation of anisotropic mesh may adversely affect hernia repairs. Proper labeling of all implants by manufacturers should be mandatory. Understanding the specific anisotropic behavior of synthetic meshes should allow surgeons to employ rational implant orientation to maximize outcomes of hernia repair.

  12. The prevalence of two ‘commonly’ encountered synthetic target fibres within a large urban environment


    Palmer, Ray; Burnett, Elisabeth; Luff, Natalie; Wagner, Craig; Stinga, Georgia; Carney, Clare; Sheridan, Kelly


    A target fibre study was carried out to assess the random prevalence of two ostensibly commonly encountered synthetic fibre types; black acrylic and blue polyester. The study was performed in an environment which maximised the number of random contacts between textile garments in the population and specific surfaces, namely; seating relating to buses, public houses and cinemas found within a large urban conurbation.\\ud \\ud Surface debris tapings were collected from samples of bus seats (30), ...

  13. Synthetic biology approaches to engineer T cells. (United States)

    Wu, Chia-Yung; Rupp, Levi J; Roybal, Kole T; Lim, Wendell A


    There is rapidly growing interest in learning how to engineer immune cells, such as T lymphocytes, because of the potential of these engineered cells to be used for therapeutic applications such as the recognition and killing of cancer cells. At the same time, our knowhow and capability to logically engineer cellular behavior is growing rapidly with the development of synthetic biology. Here we describe how synthetic biology approaches are being used to rationally alter the behavior of T cells to optimize them for therapeutic functions. We also describe future developments that will be important in order to construct safe and precise T cell therapeutics. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Synthetic mullite fabrication from smectite clays

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lima, L.N. de; Kiminami, R.H.G.A.


    The technological importance of mullite is mostly due to its refractory properties. Mullite in native form is very rare, and therefore it may be necessary to produced it by synthetic means. Brazil has a large reserve of smectite clays. In this work the process to produce synthetic mullite from these clays by treatment with aluminum sulphate was studied. X-ray analyses has shown the presence of mullite crystals in treated smectite clays of several colours, sinterized at 1100 0 C. By sintering at 1300 0 C, pure mullite was obtained in some colours. (author) [pt

  15. Functional mining of transporters using synthetic selections

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Genee, Hans Jasper; Bali, Anne Pihl; Petersen, Søren Dalsgård


    transporters, PnuT, which is widely distributed across multiple bacterial phyla. We demonstrate that with modular replacement of the biosensor, we could expand our method to xanthine and identify xanthine permeases from gut and soil metagenomes. Our results demonstrate how synthetic-biology approaches can......-responsive biosensor systems that enable selective growth of cells only if they encode a ligand-specific importer. We developed such a synthetic selection system for thiamine pyrophosphate and mined soil and gut metagenomes for thiamine-uptake functions. We identified several members of a novel class of thiamine...

  16. New Synthetic Methods for Hypericum Natural Products

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jeon, Insik [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)


    Organic chemistry has served as a solid foundation for interdisciplinary research areas, such as molecular biology and medicinal chemistry. An understanding of the biological activities and structural elucidations of natural products can lead to the development of clinically valuable therapeutic options. The advancements of modern synthetic methodologies allow for more elaborate and concise natural product syntheses. The theme of this study centers on the synthesis of natural products with particularly challenging structures and interesting biological activities. The synthetic expertise developed here will be applicable to analog syntheses and to other research problems.

  17. Parity-Time Synthetic Phononic Media

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Johan; Willatzen, Morten; Velasco, V. R.


    media, have been devised in many optical systems with the ground breaking potential to create nonreciprocal structures and one-way cloaks of invisibility. Here we demonstrate a feasible approach for the case of sound where the most important ingredients within synthetic materials, loss and gain......, are achieved through electrically biased piezoelectric semiconductors. We study first how wave attenuation and amplification can be tuned, and when combined, can give rise to a phononic PT synthetic media with unidirectional suppressed reflectance, a feature directly applicable to evading sonar detection....

  18. Synthetic biology of microbes synthesizing polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guo-Qiang Chen


    Full Text Available Microbial polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA have been produced as bioplastics for various purposes. Under the support of China National Basic Research 973 Project, we developed synthetic biology methods to diversify the PHA structures into homo-, random, block polymers with improved properties to better meet various application requirements. At the same time, various pathways were assembled to produce various PHA from glucose as a simple carbon source. At the end, Halomonas bacteria were reconstructed to produce PHA in changing morphology for low cost production under unsterile and continuous conditions. The synthetic biology will advance the PHA into a bio- and material industry.

  19. Purifying synthetic or fermentation ethyl alcohol

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    Synthetic or fermentation grade ethanol is treated with an alkaki metal sulfite for about 10 hours then rectified to give a product free of odor and taste defects. For example, ethanol from molasses was treated with 10g Na/sub 2/SO/sub 3/.7H/sub 2/O per liter of alcohol, (70/sup 0/ Gay-Lussac) for 10 hours. Synthetic ethanol was treated with 3g Na/sub 2/SO/sub 3/.7H/sub 2/O for 10 hours.

  20. Purifying synthetic or fermentation ethyl alcohol

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    Synthetic or fermentation grade ethanol is treated with an alkali metal sulfite for about 10 hours then rectified to give a product free of odor and taste defects. For example, ethanol from molasses was treated with 10g, Na/sub 2/SO/sub 3/.7H/sub 2/0 per liter of alcohol, (70/sup 0/ Gay-Lussac) for 10 hours. Synthetic ethanol was treated with 3 g Na/sub 2/SO/sub 3/.7H/sub 2/O for 10 hours.

  1. Multi-antenna synthetic aperture radar

    CERN Document Server

    Wang, Wen-Qin


    Synthetic aperture radar (SAR) is a well-known remote sensing technique, but conventional single-antenna SAR is inherently limited by the minimum antenna area constraint. Although there are still technical issues to overcome, multi-antenna SAR offers many benefits, from improved system gain to increased degrees-of-freedom and system flexibility. Multi-Antenna Synthetic Aperture Radar explores the potential and challenges of using multi-antenna SAR in microwave remote sensing applications. These applications include high-resolution imaging, wide-swath remote sensing, ground moving target indica

  2. [Salem witches, flying brooms, and synthetic drugs]. (United States)

    Castellanos Tejero, Manuel; Castellanos Tejero, M de los Angeles


    As supplementary material to Health Education programs about synthetic drugs, the authors present a historical summary on LSD, stramonium and khat. "Tripis", Special K and other synthetic pills contain these substances and are being widely used by youths. The history of these main hallucinogenic active ingredients has a strong tie to the mythology of witchcraft and witches: a historically interesting time period bearing a large amount of religious intolerance. The objective of this review is to end the belief today's youth have that they are taking new substances which have no risks.

  3. Synthetic clay excels in 90Sr removal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Komarneni, Sridhar; Kodama, Tatsuya; Paulus, William J.; Carlson, C.


    Tests with actual ground water from Hanford site, and fundamental studies of 2Na + →Sr 2+ exchange equilibria revealed that a synthetic clay is extremely selective for 90 Sr with a high capacity for uptake. Comparative studies with existing Sr selective ion exchangers clearly revealed that the present synthetic clay exhibited the best performance for 90 Sr removal from actual ground water collected from three different locations at Hanford. This novel Sr ion sieve is expected to be useful for the decontamination of the environment after accidental release and contamination with 90 Sr. (c) 2000 Materials Research Society

  4. An Experimental Study on Active Flow Control Using Synthetic Jet Actuators over S809 Airfoil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gul, M; Uzol, O; Akmandor, I S


    This study investigates the effect of periodic excitation from individually controlled synthetic jet actuators on the dynamics of the flow within the separation and re-attachment regions of the boundary layer over the suction surface of a 2D model wing that has S809 airfoil profile. Experiments are performed in METUWIND's C3 open-loop suction type wind tunnel that has a 1 m × 1 m cross-section test section. The synthetic jet array on the wing consists of three individually controlled actuators driven by piezoelectric diaphragms located at 28% chord location near the mid-span of the wing. In the first part of the study, surface pressure, Constant Temperature Anemometry (CTA) and Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) measurements are performed over the suction surface of the airfoil to determine the size and characteristics of the separated shear layer and the re-attachment region, i.e. the laminar separation bubble, at 2.3x10 5 Reynolds number at zero angle of attack and with no flow control as a baseline case. For the controlled case, CTA measurements are carried out under the same inlet conditions at various streamwise locations along the suction surface of the airfoil to investigate the effect of the synthetic jet on the boundary layer properties. During the controlled case experiments, the synthetic jet actuators are driven with a sinusoidal frequency of 1.45 kHz and 300Vp-p. Results of this study show that periodic excitation from the synthetic jet actuators eliminates the laminar separation bubble formed over the suction surface of the airfoil at 2.3x10 5 Reynolds number at zero angle of attack


    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tesař, Václav; Peszyński, K.


    Roč. 5, č. 3 (2010), s. 229-234 ISSN 1231-3998 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA200760705; GA ČR GA101/07/1499 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z20760514 Keywords : synthetic jets * annular jets * terrorism Subject RIV: BK - Fluid Dynamics

  6. Synthetic biology advances for pharmaceutical production


    Breitling, Rainer; Takano, Eriko


    Synthetic biology enables a new generation of microbial engineering for the biotechnological production of pharmaceuticals and other high-value chemicals. This review presents an overview of recent advances in the field, describing new computational and experimental tools for the discovery, optimization and production of bioactive molecules, and outlining progress towards the application of these tools to pharmaceutical production systems.

  7. Homogeneous nucleation of water in synthetic air

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fransen, M.A.L.J.; Sachteleben, E.; Hruby, J.; Smeulders, D.M.J.; DeMott, P.J.; O'Dowd, C.D.


    Homogeneous nucleation rates for water vapor in synthetic air are measured by means of a Pulse-Expansion Wave Tube (PEWT). A comparison of the experimental nucleation rates with the Classical Nucleation Theory (CNT) shows that a more elaborated model is necessary to describe supercooled water

  8. A combinatorial approach to synthetic receptors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Timmerman, P.; Reinhoudt, David


    Antibodies, the workhorses of every living organisms immune system, are characterized by their extraordinarily high binding affinity and selectivity for a particular antigen. Despite numerous efforts to mimic these binding properties in synthetic molecules, chemists have so far not been able to

  9. Raman spectrum of natural and synthetic stishovite (United States)

    Hemley, R.J.; Mao, Ho-kwang; Chao, E.C.T.


    Raman spectra of natural and synthetic samples of stishovite have been measured with a micro-optical spectrometer system. These spectra have a pattern that is characteristic of rutile-structured oxides. The spectrum of synthetic stishovite is characterized by well-resolved bands at 231, 589, 753, and 967 cm-1, which are assigned as the B1g, Eg, A1g, and B2g fundamentals, respectively, of the first-order Raman spectrum of the ideal, ordered structure. Natural stishovite obtained from Meteor Crater, Arizona has a first-order Raman spectrum that is fully consistent with that of the synthetic material. The observed spectrum of the natural sample, however, is weaker and has bands in addition to those identified as fundamentals in the spectrum of the synthetic material. A broad band at ???475 cm-1 may be indicative of glass or contaminants derived from the extraction procedure. Alternatively, this band may arise from multiphonon scattering that is enhanced by poor crystallinity or structural disorder in the natural shocked sample. ?? 1986 Springer-Verlag.

  10. Synthetic tsunamis along the Israeli coast. (United States)

    Tobias, Joshua; Stiassnie, Michael


    The new mathematical model for tsunami evolution by Tobias & Stiassnie (Tobias & Stiassnie 2011 J. Geophys. Res. Oceans 116, C06026) is used to derive a synthetic tsunami database for the southern part of the Eastern Mediterranean coast. Information about coastal tsunami amplitudes, half-periods, currents and inundation levels is presented.

  11. DESCQA: Synthetic Sky Catalog Validation Framework (United States)

    Mao, Yao-Yuan; Uram, Thomas D.; Zhou, Rongpu; Kovacs, Eve; Ricker, Paul M.; Kalmbach, J. Bryce; Padilla, Nelson; Lanusse, François; Zu, Ying; Tenneti, Ananth; Vikraman, Vinu; DeRose, Joseph


    The DESCQA framework provides rigorous validation protocols for assessing the quality of high-quality simulated sky catalogs in a straightforward and comprehensive way. DESCQA enables the inspection, validation, and comparison of an inhomogeneous set of synthetic catalogs via the provision of a common interface within an automated framework. An interactive web interface is also available at

  12. Synthetic Biology: Applications in the Food Sector. (United States)

    Tyagi, Ashish; Kumar, Ashwani; Aparna, S V; Mallappa, Rashmi H; Grover, Sunita; Batish, Virender Kumar


    Synthetic biology also termed as "genomic alchemy" represents a powerful area of science that is based on the convergence of biological sciences with systems engineering. It has been fittingly described as "moving from reading the genetic code to writing it" as it focuses on building, modeling, designing and fabricating novel biological systems using customized gene components that result in artificially created genetic circuitry. The scientifically compelling idea of the technological manipulation of life has been advocated since long time. Realization of this idea has gained momentum with development of high speed automation and the falling cost of gene sequencing and synthesis following the completion of the human genome project. Synthetic biology will certainly be instrumental in shaping the development of varying areas ranging from biomedicine, biopharmaceuticals, chemical production, food and dairy quality monitoring, packaging, and storage of food and dairy products, bioremediation and bioenergy production, etc. However, potential dangers of using synthetic life forms have to be acknowledged and adoption of policies by the scientific community to ensure safe practice while making important advancements in the ever expanding field of synthetic biology is to be fully supported and implemented.

  13. Evaluation of synthetic promoters in Physcomitrella patens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Peramuna, Anantha; Bae, Hansol; Rasmussen, Erling Koch


    Securing a molecular toolbox including diverse promoters is essential for genome engineering. However, native promoters have limitations such as the available number or the length of the promoter. In this work, three short synthetic promoters were characterized by using the yellow fluorescent...

  14. Synthetic biology advances for pharmaceutical production (United States)

    Breitling, Rainer; Takano, Eriko


    Synthetic biology enables a new generation of microbial engineering for the biotechnological production of pharmaceuticals and other high-value chemicals. This review presents an overview of recent advances in the field, describing new computational and experimental tools for the discovery, optimization and production of bioactive molecules, and outlining progress towards the application of these tools to pharmaceutical production systems. PMID:25744872

  15. News: Synthetic biology leading to specialty chemicals (United States)

    Synthetic biology can combine the disciplines of biology, engineering, and chemistry productively to form molecules of great scientific and commercial value. Recent advances in the new field are explored for their connection to new tools that have been used to elucidate productio...

  16. Synthetic biology for microbial heavy metal biosensors. (United States)

    Kim, Hyun Ju; Jeong, Haeyoung; Lee, Sang Jun


    Using recombinant DNA technology, various whole-cell biosensors have been developed for detection of environmental pollutants, including heavy metal ions. Whole-cell biosensors have several advantages: easy and inexpensive cultivation, multiple assays, and no requirement of any special techniques for analysis. In the era of synthetic biology, cutting-edge DNA sequencing and gene synthesis technologies have accelerated the development of cell-based biosensors. Here, we summarize current technological advances in whole-cell heavy metal biosensors, including the synthetic biological components (bioparts), sensing and reporter modules, genetic circuits, and chassis cells. We discuss several opportunities for improvement of synthetic cell-based biosensors. First, new functional modules must be discovered in genome databases, and this knowledge must be used to upgrade specific bioparts through molecular engineering. Second, modules must be assembled into functional biosystems in chassis cells. Third, heterogeneity of individual cells in the microbial population must be eliminated. In the perspectives, the development of whole-cell biosensors is also discussed in the aspects of cultivation methods and synthetic cells.

  17. Design and construction of "synthetic species".

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduardo Moreno

    Full Text Available Synthetic biology is an area of biological research that combines science and engineering. Here, I merge the principles of synthetic biology and regulatory evolution to create a new species with a minimal set of known elements. Using preexisting transgenes and recessive mutations of Drosophila melanogaster, a transgenic population arises with small eyes and a different venation pattern that fulfils the criteria of a new species according to Mayr's Biological Species Concept. The population described here is the first transgenic organism that cannot hybridize with the original wild type population but remains fertile when crossed with other identical transgenic animals. I therefore propose the term "synthetic species" to distinguish it from "natural species", not only because it has been created by genetic manipulation, but also because it may never be able to survive outside the laboratory environment. The use of genetic engineering to design artificial species barriers could help us understand natural speciation and may have practical applications. For instance, the transition from transgenic organisms towards synthetic species could constitute a safety mechanism to avoid the hybridization of genetically modified animals with wild type populations, preserving biodiversity.

  18. CO2 Capture with Enzyme Synthetic Analogue

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cordatos, Harry


    Overview of an ongoing, 2 year research project partially funded by APRA-E to create a novel, synthetic analogue of carbonic anhydrase and incorporate it into a membrane for removal of CO2 from flue gas in coal power plants. Mechanism background, preliminary feasibility study results, molecular modeling of analogue-CO2 interaction, and program timeline are provided.

  19. Synthetic analog computation in living cells. (United States)

    Daniel, Ramiz; Rubens, Jacob R; Sarpeshkar, Rahul; Lu, Timothy K


    A central goal of synthetic biology is to achieve multi-signal integration and processing in living cells for diagnostic, therapeutic and biotechnology applications. Digital logic has been used to build small-scale circuits, but other frameworks may be needed for efficient computation in the resource-limited environments of cells. Here we demonstrate that synthetic analog gene circuits can be engineered to execute sophisticated computational functions in living cells using just three transcription factors. Such synthetic analog gene circuits exploit feedback to implement logarithmically linear sensing, addition, ratiometric and power-law computations. The circuits exhibit Weber's law behaviour as in natural biological systems, operate over a wide dynamic range of up to four orders of magnitude and can be designed to have tunable transfer functions. Our circuits can be composed to implement higher-order functions that are well described by both intricate biochemical models and simple mathematical functions. By exploiting analog building-block functions that are already naturally present in cells, this approach efficiently implements arithmetic operations and complex functions in the logarithmic domain. Such circuits may lead to new applications for synthetic biology and biotechnology that require complex computations with limited parts, need wide-dynamic-range biosensing or would benefit from the fine control of gene expression.

  20. Optimization of Synthetic Aperture Image Quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moshavegh, Ramin; Jensen, Jonas; Villagómez Hoyos, Carlos Armando


    Synthetic Aperture (SA) imaging produces high-quality images and velocity estimates of both slow and fast flow at high frame rates. However, grating lobe artifacts can appear both in transmission and reception. These affect the image quality and the frame rate. Therefore optimization of parameter...

  1. Simultaneous adsorption and biodegradation of synthetic melanoidin

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Being an antioxidant, melanoidin removal through purely biodegradation has been inadequate. Consequently, in the current study, simultaneous adsorption and biodegradation (SAB) was employed in a stirred tank system to remove melanoidin from synthetic wastewater. Mixed microbial consortium was immobilized onto ...

  2. Super-Resolution for Synthetic Zooming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Xin


    Full Text Available Optical zooming is an important feature of imaging systems. In this paper, we investigate a low-cost signal processing alternative to optical zooming—synthetic zooming by super-resolution (SR techniques. Synthetic zooming is achieved by registering a sequence of low-resolution (LR images acquired at varying focal lengths and reconstructing the SR image at a larger focal length or increased spatial resolution. Under the assumptions of constant scene depth and zooming speed, we argue that the motion trajectories of all physical points are related to each other by a unique vanishing point and present a robust technique for estimating its D coordinate. Such a line-geometry-based registration is the foundation of SR for synthetic zooming. We address the issue of data inconsistency arising from the varying focal length of optical lens during the zooming process. To overcome the difficulty of data inconsistency, we propose a two-stage Delaunay-triangulation-based interpolation for fusing the LR image data. We also present a PDE-based nonlinear deblurring to accommodate the blindness and variation of sensor point spread functions. Simulation results with real-world images have verified the effectiveness of the proposed SR techniques for synthetic zooming.

  3. Preparation of Natural and Synthetic Porous Biodegradable ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    First page Back Continue Last page Overview Graphics. Preparation of Natural and Synthetic Porous Biodegradable Scaffolds for Infected Wounds. Characterised for their physical properties, pore size and release kinetics. Release kinetics of bioactive molecules (antibiotics) in a controlled fashion. Release pattern of the ...

  4. 21 CFR 175.250 - Paraffin (synthetic). (United States)


    ... hydrocarbons. Lower molecular-weight fractions are removed by distillation. The residue is hydrogenated and may... its components by a solvent separation method, using synthetic isoparaffinic petroleum hydrocarbons... method E131-81a, “Standard Definitions of Terms and Symbols Relating to Molecular-Spectroscopy,” which is...

  5. Immobilization of radioiodine in synthetic boracite (United States)

    Babad, H.; Strachan, D.M.


    A nuclear waste storage product is disclosed in which radioiodine is incorporated in a synthetic boracite. The boracite may be prepared by reacting a transition metal iodide with an alkali horate under mild hydrothermal conditions, drying the reaction product, and then hot pressing.

  6. Sonar path correction in synthetic aperture processing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groen, J.; Hansen, R.E.; Sabel, J.C.


    In the next generation of mine hunting sonars, in particular on Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs), Synthetic Aperture Sonar (SAS) will play an important role. The benefit of SAS is to increase resolution and signal-tonoise ratio by coherent processing of successive pings. A challenge in SAS is

  7. Once more on Analytic vs. Synthetic

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Materna, Pavel


    Roč. 16, č. 1 (2007), s. 3-43 ISSN 1425-3305 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA401/07/0451 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z90090514 Keywords : analytic * synthetic * intensions * constructions * concepts * pragmatics Subject RIV: AA - Philosophy ; Religion


    NARCIS (Netherlands)


    We have constructed a model to calculate in a synthetic way the evolution of stars on the asymptotic giant branch (AGB). The evolution is started at the first thermal pulse (TP) and is terminated when the envelope mass has been lost due to mass loss or when the core mass reaches the Chandrasekhar

  9. Synthetic Aperture Beamformation using the GPU

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Jens Munk; Schaa, Dana; Jensen, Jørgen Arendt


    A synthetic aperture ultrasound beamformer is implemented for a GPU using the OpenCL framework. The implementation supports beamformation of either RF signals or complex baseband signals. Transmit and receive apodization can be either parametric or dynamic using a fixed F-number, a reference...

  10. Wind energy applications of synthetic aperture radar

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Badger, Merete

    Synthetic aperture radars (SAR), mounted on satellites or aircraft, have proven useful for ocean wind mapping. Wind speeds at the height 10 m may be retrieved from measurements of radar backscatter using empirical model functions. The resulting windfields are valuable in offshore wind energy plan...

  11. Synthetic biology between technoscience and thing knowledge. (United States)

    Gelfert, Axel


    Synthetic biology presents a challenge to traditional accounts of biology: Whereas traditional biology emphasizes the evolvability, variability, and heterogeneity of living organisms, synthetic biology envisions a future of homogeneous, humanly engineered biological systems that may be combined in modular fashion. The present paper approaches this challenge from the perspective of the epistemology of technoscience. In particular, it is argued that synthetic-biological artifacts lend themselves to an analysis in terms of what has been called 'thing knowledge'. As such, they should neither be regarded as the simple outcome of applying theoretical knowledge and engineering principles to specific technological problems, nor should they be treated as mere sources of new evidence in the general pursuit of scientific understanding. Instead, synthetic-biological artifacts should be viewed as partly autonomous research objects which, qua their material-biological constitution, embody knowledge about the natural world-knowledge that, in turn, can be accessed via continuous experimental interrogation. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Synthetic biology for pharmaceutical drug discovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trosset JY


    Full Text Available Jean-Yves Trosset,1 Pablo Carbonell2,3 1Bioinformation Research Laboratory, Sup’Biotech, Villejuif, France; 2Faculty of Life Sciences, SYNBIOCHEM Centre, Manchester Institute of Biotechnology, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK; 3Department of Experimental and Health Sciences (DCEXS, Research Programme on Biomedical Informatics (GRIB, Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute (IMIM, Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF, Barcelona, Spain Abstract: Synthetic biology (SB is an emerging discipline, which is slowly reorienting the field of drug discovery. For thousands of years, living organisms such as plants were the major source of human medicines. The difficulty in resynthesizing natural products, however, often turned pharmaceutical industries away from this rich source for human medicine. More recently, progress on transformation through genetic manipulation of biosynthetic units in microorganisms has opened the possibility of in-depth exploration of the large chemical space of natural products derivatives. Success of SB in drug synthesis culminated with the bioproduction of artemisinin by microorganisms, a tour de force in protein and metabolic engineering. Today, synthetic cells are not only used as biofactories but also used as cell-based screening platforms for both target-based and phenotypic-based approaches. Engineered genetic circuits in synthetic cells are also used to decipher disease mechanisms or drug mechanism of actions and to study cell–cell communication within bacteria consortia. This review presents latest developments of SB in the field of drug discovery, including some challenging issues such as drug resistance and drug toxicity. Keywords: metabolic engineering, plant synthetic biology, natural products, synthetic quorum sensing, drug resistance

  13. Synthetic biology and biosecurity: challenging the "myths". (United States)

    Jefferson, Catherine; Lentzos, Filippa; Marris, Claire


    Synthetic biology, a field that aims to "make biology easier to engineer," is routinely described as leading to an increase in the "dual-use" threat, i.e., the potential for the same scientific research to be "used" for peaceful purposes or "misused" for warfare or terrorism. Fears have been expressed that the "de-skilling" of biology, combined with online access to the genomic DNA sequences of pathogenic organisms and the reduction in price for DNA synthesis, will make biology increasingly accessible to people operating outside well-equipped professional research laboratories, including people with malevolent intentions. The emergence of do-it-yourself (DIY) biology communities and of the student iGEM competition has come to epitomize this supposed trend toward greater ease of access and the associated potential threat from rogue actors. In this article, we identify five "myths" that permeate discussions about synthetic biology and biosecurity, and argue that they embody misleading assumptions about both synthetic biology and bioterrorism. We demonstrate how these myths are challenged by more realistic understandings of the scientific research currently being conducted in both professional and DIY laboratories, and by an analysis of historical cases of bioterrorism. We show that the importance of tacit knowledge is commonly overlooked in the dominant narrative: the focus is on access to biological materials and digital information, rather than on human practices and institutional dimensions. As a result, public discourse on synthetic biology and biosecurity tends to portray speculative scenarios about the future as realities in the present or the near future, when this is not warranted. We suggest that these "myths" play an important role in defining synthetic biology as a "promissory" field of research and as an "emerging technology" in need of governance.

  14. Manipulation of Turbulent Boundary Layers Using Synthetic Jets (United States)

    Berger, Zachary; Gomit, Guillaume; Lavoie, Philippe; Ganapathisubramani, Bharath


    This work focuses on the application of active flow control, in the form of synthetic jet actuators, of turbulent boundary layers. An array of 2 synthetic jets are oriented in the spanwise direction and located approximately 2.7 meters downstream from the leading edge of a flat plate. Actuation is applied perpendicular to the surface of the flat plate with varying blowing ratios and reduced frequencies (open-loop). Two-component large window particle image velocimetry (PIV) was performed at the University of Southampton, in the streamwise-wall-normal plane. Complementary stereo PIV measurements were performed at the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies (UTIAS), in the spanwise-wall-normal plane. The freestream Reynolds number is 3x104, based on the boundary layer thickness. The skin friction Reynolds number is 1,200 based on the skin friction velocity. The experiments at Southampton allow for the observation of the control effects as the flow propagates downstream. The experiments at UTIAS allow for the observation of the streamwise vorticity induced from the actuation. Overall the two experiments provide a 3D representation of the flow field with respect to actuation effects. The current work focuses on the comparison of the two experiments, as well as the effects of varying blowing ratios and reduced frequencies on the turbulent boundary layer. Funded Supported by Airbus.

  15. Heterogeneous reduction of nitric oxide on synthetic coal chars

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    C. Pevida; A. Arenillas; F. Rubiera; J.J. Pis [Instituto Nacional del Carbon (CSIC), Oviedo (Spain)


    Model compounds, with a controlled heteroatoms content and well-defined functionalities, were used to study the release of nitrogen compounds from char combustion. In the present work, the mechanisms involved in NO-char heterogeneous reduction were studied with a synthetic coal (SC) char as carbon source. Another synthetic char (SN) without any nitrogen in its composition was also employed in these studies. Temperature programmed reduction (TPR) tests with a gas mixture of 400 ppm NO in argon and with isotopically labelled nitric oxide, {sup 15}NO (500 ppm {sup 15}NO in argon), were carried out. The gases produced were quantitatively determined by means of MS and FTIR analysers. Under the conditions of this work the main products of the NO-C reaction were found to be N{sub 2} and CO{sub 2}. The main path of reaction involves the formation of surface nitrogen compounds that afterwards react with nitrogen from the reactive gas to form N{sub 2}. It was observed that fuel-N also participates in the overall heterogeneous reduction reaction, although to a lesser extent.

  16. Synthetic Jets Flow Control on a vertical stabilizer (United States)

    Rathay, Nicholas; Boucher, Matthew; Amitay, Michael


    The vertical stabilizer on most commercial transport aircraft is much larger than required for stability and control. The tail is significantly oversized in order to maintain controllability in the event of asymmetric engine failure and meet flying qualities requirements related to dynamic motion. Using aerodynamic flow control techniques, it may be possible to reduce the size of the tail while maintaining similar control authority during inclement flight conditions. Reducing the size of the tail decreases the weight and the drag of the airplane, which results in considerable savings in fuel costs. In this work, it is shown that synthetic jet (zero-net-mass-flux) actuators are capable of reattaching the separated flow on the rudder and augmenting the performance of the stabilizer. Experiments were conducted in an open-return wind tunnel on a 1/25th scale model of a vertical stabilizer and a partial fuselage section. The surface pressure, aerodynamic loads and data acquired with a Stereo PIV system were used to investigate the effectiveness of this technology as well as provide a more detailed analysis of the flowfield and showed that the synthetic jets are capable of augmenting the side-force by up to 20%.

  17. From noise to synthetic nucleoli: can synthetic biology achieve new insights? (United States)

    Ciechonska, Marta; Grob, Alice; Isalan, Mark


    Synthetic biology aims to re-organise and control biological components to make functional devices. Along the way, the iterative process of designing and testing gene circuits has the potential to yield many insights into the functioning of the underlying chassis of cells. Thus, synthetic biology is converging with disciplines such as systems biology and even classical cell biology, to give a new level of predictability to gene expression, cell metabolism and cellular signalling networks. This review gives an overview of the contributions that synthetic biology has made in understanding gene expression, in terms of cell heterogeneity (noise), the coupling of growth and energy usage to expression, and spatiotemporal considerations. We mainly compare progress in bacterial and mammalian systems, which have some of the most-developed engineering frameworks. Overall, one view of synthetic biology can be neatly summarised as "creating in order to understand."

  18. Virtual Shaping of a Two-dimensional NACA 0015 Airfoil Using Synthetic Jet Actuator (United States)

    Chen, Fang-Jenq; Beeler, George B.


    The Aircraft Morphing Program at NASA Langley envisions an aircraft without conventional control surfaces. Instead of moving control surfaces, the vehicle control systems may be implemented with a combination of propulsive forces, micro surface effectors, and fluidic devices dynamically operated by an intelligent flight control system to provide aircraft maneuverability over each mission segment. As a part of this program, a two-dimensional NACA 0015 airfoil model was designed to test mild maneuvering capability of synthetic jets in a subsonic wind tunnel. The objective of the experiments is to assess the applicability of using unsteady suction and blowing to alter the aerodynamic shape of an airfoil with a purpose to enhance lift and/or to reduce drag. Synthetic jet actuation at different chordwise locations, different forcing frequencies and amplitudes, under different freestream velocities are investigated. The effect of virtual shape change is indicated by a localized increase of surface pressure in the neighborhood of synthetic jet actuation. That causes a negative lift to the airfoil with an upper surface actuation. When actuation is applied near the airfoil leading edge, it appears that the stagnation line is shifted inducing an effect similar to that caused by a small angle of attack to produce an overall lift change.

  19. Characterization of high speed synthetic jet actuators (United States)

    Pikcilingis, Lucia

    Over the last 20 years, synthetic jets have been studied as a means for aerodynamic active flow control. Specifically, synthetic jets provide momentum transfer with zero-net mass flux, which has been proven to be effective for controlling flow fields. A synthetic jet is created by the periodic formation of vortex rings at its orifice due to the periodic motion of a piezoelectric disk(s). The present study seeks to optimize the performance of a synthetic jet actuator by utilizing different geometrical parameters such as disk thickness, orifice width and length, cavity height and cavity diameter, and different input parameters such as driving voltage and frequency. Two apparatuses were used with a cavity diameter of either 80 mm or 160 mm. Piezoelectric-based disks were provided by the Mide Corporation. Experiments were conducted using several synthetic jet apparatuses designed for various geometrical parameters utilizing a dual disk configuration. Velocity and temperature measurements were acquired at the center of the synthetic jet orifice using a temperature compensated hotwire and thermocouple probe. The disk(s) displacement was measured at the center of the disk with a laser displacement sensor. It was shown that the synthetic jets, having the 80 mm cavity diameter, are capable of exceeding peak velocities of 200 m/s with a relatively large orifice of dimensions AR = 12, hc* = 3, and hn* = 4. In addition, the conditions at which the disks were manufactured had minimal effect on the performance of the jet, except for the pair with overnight resting time as opposed to less than an hour resting time for the control units. Altering the tab style of the disks, where the tab allows the electrical circuit to be exposed for external power connection, showed that a thin fragile tab versus a tab of the same thickness as the disk has minimal effect on the performance but affects the durability of the disk due to the fragility or robustness of the tab. The synthetic jets

  20. Characterization of Thermal Stability of Synthetic and Semi-Synthetic Engine Oils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anand Kumar Tripathi


    Full Text Available Engine oils undergo oxidative degradation and wears out during service. Hence it is important to characterize ageing of engine oils at different simulated conditions to evaluate the performance of existing oils and also design new formulations. This work focuses on characterizing the thermo-oxidative degradation of synthetic and semi-synthetic engine oils aged at 120, 149 and 200 °C. Apparent activation energy of decomposition of aged oils evaluated using the isoconversional Kissinger-Akahira-Sunose technique was used as a thermal stability marker. The temporal variation of stability at different ageing temperatures was corroborated with kinematic viscosity, oxidation, sulfation and nitration indices, total base number, antiwear additive content and molecular structure of the organic species present in the oils. At the lowest temperature employed, synthetic oil underwent higher rate of oxidation, while semi-synthetic oil was stable for longer time periods. At higher temperatures, the initial rate of change of average apparent activation energy of synthetic oil correlated well with a similar variation in oxidation number. A mixture of long chain linear, branched, and cyclic hydrocarbons were observed when semi-synthetic oil was degraded at higher temperatures.

  1. Biotin-specific synthetic receptors prepared using molecular imprinting

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Piletska, Elena; Piletsky, Sergey; Karim, Kal; Terpetschnig, Ewald; Turner, Anthony


    The composition of new molecularly imprinted polymers (MIPs) specific for biotin was optimised using molecular modelling software. Three functional monomers: methacrylic acid (MAA), 2-(trifluoromethyl)acrylic acid (TFAA) and 2-acrylamido-2-methylpropanesulfonic acid (AMPSA), which demonstrated the highest binding scores with biotin, were tested on their ability to generate specific binding sites. The imprinted polymers were photografted to the surface of polystyrene microspheres in water. The affinity of the synthetic 'receptor' sites was evaluated in binding experiments using horseradish peroxidase-labelled biotin. Good correlation was found between the modelling results and the performance of the materials in the template re-binding study. The dissociation constants for all MIPs were 1.4-16.8 nM, which is sufficient for most analytical applications where biotin is used as a label.

  2. Biotin-specific synthetic receptors prepared using molecular imprinting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Piletska, Elena; Piletsky, Sergey; Karim, Kal; Terpetschnig, Ewald; Turner, Anthony


    The composition of new molecularly imprinted polymers (MIPs) specific for biotin was optimised using molecular modelling software. Three functional monomers: methacrylic acid (MAA), 2-(trifluoromethyl)acrylic acid (TFAA) and 2-acrylamido-2-methylpropanesulfonic acid (AMPSA), which demonstrated the highest binding scores with biotin, were tested on their ability to generate specific binding sites. The imprinted polymers were photografted to the surface of polystyrene microspheres in water. The affinity of the synthetic 'receptor' sites was evaluated in binding experiments using horseradish peroxidase-labelled biotin. Good correlation was found between the modelling results and the performance of the materials in the template re-binding study. The dissociation constants for all MIPs were 1.4-16.8 nM, which is sufficient for most analytical applications where biotin is used as a label


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Maghsoudi


    Full Text Available Geomorphology is briefly the study of landforms and their formative processes on the surface of the planet earth as human habitat. The landforms evolution and the formative processes can best be studied by technologies with main application in study of elevation. Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR is the appropriate technology for this application. With phase differences calculations in radar waves, the results of this technology can extensively be interpreted for geomorphologic researches. The purpose of the study is to review the geomorphologic studies using InSAR and also the technical studies about InSAR with geomorphologic interpretations. This study states that the InSAR technology can be recommended to be employed as a fundamental for geomorphology researches.

  4. Ion channeling in natural and synthetic beryl crystals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fritzsche, C.R.; Diehl, R.; Goetzberger, A.


    The transmission of ions by channeling through natural beryl and synthetic emerald has been studied extensively. The transmission ratios depend upon the angle of incidence with a full half width of less than 0.32 0 . While the maximum ratio obtained up to now is only 4 x 10 -4 for 350 keV protons through a crystal of 21 μm thickness, the energy of the transmitted ions is high, the loss being in the order of a few keV/μm. About 60-80% of the particles emerging from the rear surface are ionized. By varying the ion species transmission could be observed up to atomic number 9. It is assumed that the transmission is facilitated by the existence of an electron free channel core. Higher transmission ratios can be expected for sufficiently perfect crystals. (orig.) 891 CDS/orig. 892 MB

  5. Fentanyl and Other Synthetic Opioids Drug Overdose Deaths (United States)

    ... Alcohol Club Drugs Cocaine Fentanyl Hallucinogens Inhalants Heroin Marijuana MDMA (Ecstasy/Molly) Methamphetamine Opioids Over-the-Counter Medicines Prescription Medicines Steroids (Anabolic) Synthetic Cannabinoids (K2/Spice) Synthetic Cathinones (Bath Salts) Tobacco/ ...


    Pyrethrins are natural insecticides in the extract of chrysanthemum flowers1. Pyrethroids are synthetic forms of pyrethrins, and many are halogenated (F, Cl, Br). Synthetic pyrethroids have become popular replacements for organophosphorus pesticides, which have become increasin...

  7. Ships as salient objects in synthetic aperture radar imaginary

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Schwegmann, Colin P


    Full Text Available The widespread access to Synthetic Aperture Radar data has created a need for more precise ship extraction, specifically in low-to-medium resolution imagery. While Synthetic Aperture Radar pixel resolution is improving for a large swaths...

  8. Engineering of synthetic, stress-responsive yeast promoters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rajkumar, Arun Stephen; Liu, Guodong; Bergenholm, David


    Advances in synthetic biology and our understanding of the rules of promoter architecture have led to the development of diverse synthetic constitutive and inducible promoters in eukaryotes and prokaryotes. However, the design of promoters inducibleby specific endogenous or environmental conditions...

  9. Health safety issues of synthetic food colorants. (United States)

    Amchova, Petra; Kotolova, Hana; Ruda-Kucerova, Jana


    Increasing attention has been recently paid to the toxicity of additives used in food. The European Parliament and the Council published the REGULATION (EC) No. 1333/2008 on food additives establishing that the toxicity of food additives evaluated before 20th January 2009 must be re-evaluated by European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). The aim of this review is to survey current knowledge specifically on the toxicity issues of synthetic food colorants using official reports published by the EFSA and other available studies published since the respective report. Synthetic colorants described are Tartrazine, Quinoline Yellow, Sunset Yellow, Azorubine, Ponceau 4R, Erythrosine, Allura Red, Patent Blue, Indigo Carmine, Brilliant Blue FCF, Green S, Brilliant Black and Brown HT. Moreover, a summary of evidence on possible detrimental effects of colorant mixes on children's behaviour is provided and future research directions are outlined. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. [Progress in synthetic biology of pinocembrin]. (United States)

    Guo, Lei; Kong, Jianqiang


    Pinocembrin, belonging to flavanons, was isolated from various plants. Pinocembrin has a variety of pharmacological activities, such as neuroprotective effect, antimicrobial activity, and antioxidant efficacy. Pinocembrin was approved as class I drugs to its phase II clinical trial by CFDA in 2009, mainly used for the treatment of ischemic stroke. As a promising compound, the manufacturing technologies of pinocembrin, including chemical synthesis, extraction from plant and synthetic biology, have attracted many attentions. Compared with the first two technologies, synthetic biology has many advantages, such as environment-friendly and low-cost. Construction of biosynthetic pathway in microorganism offers promising results for large scale pinocembrin production by fermentation after taking lots of effective strategies. This article reviews some of recent strategies in microorganisms to improve the yield, with focus on the selection of appropriate the key enzyme sources, the supply of precursors and cofactors by microorganisms, the choice of substance and the level of the key enzyme expression.

  11. Fusion as a source of synthetic fuels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Powell, J.R.; Fillo, J.A.; Steinberg, M.


    In the near-term, coal derived synthetic fuels will be used; but in the long-term, resource depletion and environmental effects will mandate synthetic fuels from inexhaustible sources - fission, fusion, and solar. Of the three sources, fusion appears uniquely suited for the efficient production of hydrogen-based fuels, due to its ability to directly generate very high process temperatures (up to approx. 2000 0 C) for water splitting reactions. Fusion-based water splitting reactions include high temperature electrolysis (HTE) of steam, thermochemical cycles, hybrid electrochemical/thermochemical, and direct thermal decomposition. HTE appears to be the simplest and most efficient process with efficiencies of 50 to 70% (fusion to hydrogen chemical energy), depending on process conditions

  12. Synthetic risks, risk potency, and carcinogen regulation. (United States)

    Viscusi, W K; Hakes, J K


    This article analyzes a comprehensive sample of over 350 chemicals tested for carcinogenicity to assess the determinants of the probability of regulation. Controlling for differences in the risk potency and noncancer risks, synthetic chemicals have a significantly higher probability of regulation overall: this is due to the greater likelihood of U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulation. Measures of risk potency increase the probability of regulation by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), have a somewhat weaker positive effect on regulation by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and decrease the likelihood of regulation by the FDA. The overall regulatory pattern is one in which the FDA targets synthetic chemicals and chemicals that pose relatively minor cancer risk. The EPA particularly performed more sensibly than many critics have suggested.

  13. The Prion Concept and Synthetic Prions. (United States)

    Legname, Giuseppe; Moda, Fabio


    Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies or prion diseases are a group of fatal neurodegenerative diseases caused by unconventional infectious agents, known as prions (PrP Sc ). Prions derive from a conformational conversion of the normally folded prion protein (PrP C ), which acquires pathological and infectious features. Moreover, PrP Sc is able to transmit the pathological conformation to PrP C through a mechanism that is still not well understood. The generation of synthetic prions, which behave like natural prions, is of fundamental importance to study the process of PrP C conversion and to assess the efficacy of therapeutic strategies to interfere with this process. Moreover, the ability of synthetic prions to induce pathology in animals confirms that the pathological properties of the prion strains are all enciphered in abnormal conformations, characterizing these infectious agents. © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Consequentialism and the Synthetic Biology Problem. (United States)

    Heavey, Patrick


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

  15. Designing synthetic RNA for delivery by nanoparticles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jedrzejczyk, Dominika; Pawlowska, Roza; Chworos, Arkadiusz; Gendaszewska-Darmach, Edyta


    The rapid development of synthetic biology and nanobiotechnology has led to the construction of various synthetic RNA nanoparticles of different functionalities and potential applications. As they occur naturally, nucleic acids are an attractive construction material for biocompatible nanoscaffold and nanomachine design. In this review, we provide an overview of the types of RNA and nucleic acid’s nanoparticle design, with the focus on relevant nanostructures utilized for gene-expression regulation in cellular models. Structural analysis and modeling is addressed along with the tools available for RNA structural prediction. The functionalization of RNA-based nanoparticles leading to prospective applications of such constructs in potential therapies is shown. The route from the nanoparticle design and modeling through synthesis and functionalization to cellular application is also described. For a better understanding of the fate of targeted RNA after delivery, an overview of RNA processing inside the cell is also provided. (topical review)

  16. High frame rate synthetic aperture duplex imaging

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stuart, Matthias Bo; Tomov, Borislav Gueorguiev; Pihl, Michael Johannes


    aperture flow imaging as demonstrated in this paper. Synthetic aperture, directional beamforming, and cross-correlation are used to produce B-mode and vector velocity images at high frame rates. The frame rate equals the effective pulse repetition frequency of each imaging mode. Emissions for making the B...... estimation is −1.8% and the relative standard deviation 5.4%. The approach can thus estimate both high and low velocities with equal accuracy and thereby makes it possible to present vector flow images with a high dynamic range. Measurements are made using the SARUS research scanner, a linear array......Conventional color flow images are limited in velocity range and can either show the high velocities in systole or be optimized for the lower diastolic velocities. The full dynamics of the flow is, thus, hard to visualize. The dynamic range can be significantly increased by employing synthetic...

  17. Experience with synthetic fluorinated fluid lubricants (United States)

    Conley, Peter L.; Bohner, John J.


    Since the late 1970's, the wet lubricant of choice for space mechanisms has been one of the family of synthetic perfluoro polyalkylether (PFPE) compounds, namely Fomblin Z-25 (Bray-815Z) or DuPont's Krytox 143xx series. While offering the advantages of extremely low vapor pressures and wide temperature ranges, these oils and derived greases have a complex chemistry compared to the more familiar natural and synthetic hydrocarbons. Many aerospace companies have conducted test programs to characterize the behavior of these compounds in a space environment, resulting in a large body of hard knowledge as well as considerable space lore concerning the suitability of the lubricants for particular applications and techniques for successful application. The facts are summarized and a few myths about the compounds are dispelled, and some performance guidelines for the mechanism design engineer are provided.

  18. The adjuvant potential of synthetic alkylglycerols. (United States)

    Acevedo, Reinaldo; Gil, Danay; del Campo, Judith; Bracho, Gustavo; Valdés, Yolanda; Pérez, Oliver


    Alkylglycerols (AGs) have shown immune stimulant and adjuvant activity in many studies, but natural sources are not so accessible and their extraction from them is very complicated. Therefore, a group of chemists at IFAL have synthesized AG analogs. The aim of this work was to evaluate the adjuvant potential of different synthetic AGs. A mix of ovoalbumin (Ova) and AGs increase anti-Ova IgG antibodies production in sera of immunized mice. The predominant subclass was IgG1 although higher levels of IgG2a were observed as the carbon chain length of AGs increased. AGs also induced the production of IL-12 and nitric oxide (NO) in the U937 human histiocyte and J774 mouse macrophage cell lines, respectively. These results indicate that synthetic AGs are effective adjuvants for the standardized antigen, Ova.

  19. Prospects for applying synthetic biology to toxicology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Behrendorff, James Bruce Yarnton H; Gillam, Elizabeth M.J.


    The 30 years since the inception of Chemical Research in Toxicology, game-changing advances in chemical and molecular biology, the fundamental disciplines underpinning molecular toxicology, have been made. While these have led to important advances in the study of mechanisms by which chemicals...... damage cells and systems, there has been less focus on applying these advances to prediction, detection, and mitigation of toxicity. Over the last ∼15 years, synthetic biology, the repurposing of biological "parts" in systems engineered for useful ends, has been explored in other areas of the biomedical...... and life sciences, for such applications as detecting metabolites, drug discovery and delivery, investigating disease mechanisms, improving medical treatment, and producing useful chemicals. These examples provide models for the application of synthetic biology to toxicology, which, for the most part, has...

  20. Carbon monosulfide: a useful synthetic intermediate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kramer, M.P.


    The physical properties of carbon monosulfide, CS, are well documented. The molecule has been observed in interstellar space and is found to be a common intermediate in the thermal decomposition of carbon disulfide and other sulfur compounds. Interestingly enough, the chemistry of carbon monosulfide, a molecule that is isovalent with carbon monoxide, has received little attention. The explosive nature of the carbon monosulfide monomer, which hindered previous workers, was overcome by the development of special handling techniques. The ability to produce carbon monosulfide in gram quantities had lead to synthesis of novel compounds and to a more direct synthetic route for certain known compounds. Specifically, the following general reaction demonstrates the capabilities of carbon monosulfide on the synthetic scale. CS + RXY → RXC(S)Y;(X = N,S), (Y = H, Cl). Note: The initial product formed in the reaction can be an unstable intermediate

  1. Preparing Synthetic Biology for the World

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gerd H.G. Moe-Behrens


    Full Text Available Synthetic Biology promises low-cost, exponentially scalable products and global health solutions in the form of self-replicating organisms, or living devices. As these promises are realized, proof-of-concept systems will gradually migrate from tightly regulated laboratory or industrial environments into private spaces as, for instance, probiotic health products, food, and even do-it-yourself bioengineered systems. What additional steps, if any, should be taken before releasing engineered self-replicating organisms into a broader user space? In this review, we explain how studies of genetically modified organisms lay groundwork for the future landscape of biosafety. Early in the design process, biological engineers are anticipating potential hazards and developing innovative tools to mitigate risk. Here, we survey lessons learned, ongoing efforts to engineer intrinsic biocontainment, and how different stakeholders in synthetic biology can act to accomplish best practices for biosafety.

  2. Synthetic biology expands chemical control of microorganisms. (United States)

    Ford, Tyler J; Silver, Pamela A


    The tools of synthetic biology allow researchers to change the ways engineered organisms respond to chemical stimuli. Decades of basic biology research and new efforts in computational protein and RNA design have led to the development of small molecule sensors that can be used to alter organism function. These new functions leap beyond the natural propensities of the engineered organisms. They can range from simple fluorescence or growth reporting to pathogen killing, and can involve metabolic coordination among multiple cells or organisms. Herein, we discuss how synthetic biology alters microorganisms' responses to chemical stimuli resulting in the development of microbes as toxicity sensors, disease treatments, and chemical factories. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Synthetic cannabimimetic agents metabolized by carboxylesterases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Ragnar; Nielsen, Line M; Holm, Niels B


    Synthetic cannabimimetic agents are a large group of diverse compounds which act as agonists at cannabinoid receptors. Since 2004, synthetic cannabinoids have been used recreationally, although several of the compounds have been shown to cause severe toxicity in humans. In this study......, the metabolism of two indazole carboxamide derivatives, AB-PINACA and AB-FUBINACA, was investigated by using human liver microsomes (HLM). For both compounds, a major metabolic pathway was the enzymatic hydrolysis of the primary amide, resulting in the major metabolites AB-PINACA-COOH and AB-FUBINACA-COOH. Other...... major metabolic pathways were mono-hydroxylation of the N-pentyl chain in AB-PINACA and mono-hydroxylation of the 1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutane moiety in AB-FUBINACA. To identify the enzyme(s) responsible for the amide hydrolysis, incubations with recombinant carboxylesterases and human serum, as well...

  4. Growth and optical spectroscopy of synthetic diamonds

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mudryj, A.V.; Larionova, T.P.; Shakin, I.A.; Gysakov, G.A.; Dubrov, G.A.; Tikhonov, V.V.


    It is studied the growth and optical properties of synthetic diamonds, which may be used for detection of ionizing radiation, optical windows, heat removal, ultraviolet and thermo sensors, optoelectronic devices. Optical properties of diamonds (grown in different technological conditions) were studied in temperature range 78 - 300 K by means of measuring transmission in spectral band 0.2 - 25 μm, photoluminescence and registration of luminescence excitation spectra in spectral band 0.2 - 2 μm

  5. Mammalian Synthetic Biology: Time for Big MACs. (United States)

    Martella, Andrea; Pollard, Steven M; Dai, Junbiao; Cai, Yizhi


    The enabling technologies of synthetic biology are opening up new opportunities for engineering and enhancement of mammalian cells. This will stimulate diverse applications in many life science sectors such as regenerative medicine, development of biosensing cell lines, therapeutic protein production, and generation of new synthetic genetic regulatory circuits. Harnessing the full potential of these new engineering-based approaches requires the design and assembly of large DNA constructs-potentially up to chromosome scale-and the effective delivery of these large DNA payloads to the host cell. Random integration of large transgenes, encoding therapeutic proteins or genetic circuits into host chromosomes, has several drawbacks such as risks of insertional mutagenesis, lack of control over transgene copy-number and position-specific effects; these can compromise the intended functioning of genetic circuits. The development of a system orthogonal to the endogenous genome is therefore beneficial. Mammalian artificial chromosomes (MACs) are functional, add-on chromosomal elements, which behave as normal chromosomes-being replicating and portioned to daughter cells at each cell division. They are deployed as useful gene expression vectors as they remain independent from the host genome. MACs are maintained as a single-copy and can accommodate multiple gene expression cassettes of, in theory, unlimited DNA size (MACs up to 10 megabases have been constructed). MACs therefore enabled control over ectopic gene expression and represent an excellent platform to rapidly prototype and characterize novel synthetic gene circuits without recourse to engineering the host genome. This review describes the obstacles synthetic biologists face when working with mammalian systems and how the development of improved MACs can overcome these-particularly given the spectacular advances in DNA synthesis and assembly that are fuelling this research area.

  6. Synthetic Biology to Engineer Bacteriophage Genomes. (United States)

    Rita Costa, Ana; Milho, Catarina; Azeredo, Joana; Pires, Diana Priscila


    Recent advances in the synthetic biology field have enabled the development of new molecular biology techniques used to build specialized bacteriophages with new functionalities. Bacteriophages have been engineered towards a wide range of applications including pathogen control and detection, targeted drug delivery, or even assembly of new materials.In this chapter, two strategies that have been successfully used to genetically engineer bacteriophage genomes are addressed: a yeast-based platform and bacteriophage recombineering of electroporated DNA.

  7. Visualization of synthetic jet formation in air

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Trávníček, Zdeněk; Broučková, Zuzana; Kordík, Jozef; Vít, T.


    Roč. 18, č. 4 (2015), s. 595-609 ISSN 1343-8875 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA14-08888S Institutional support: RVO:61388998 Keywords : synthetic jet * flow visualization * hot-wire anemometry Subject RIV: JU - Aeronautics, Aerodynamics, Aircrafts Impact factor: 0.720, year: 2015

  8. Visualization study of hybrid synthetic jets

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Broučková, Zuzana; Trávníček, Zdeněk


    Roč. 18, č. 4 (2015), s. 581-593 ISSN 1343-8875 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA14-08888S Institutional support: RVO:61388998 Keywords : synthetic jet * efficiency * flow visualization Subject RIV: JU - Aeronautics, Aerodynamics, Aircrafts Impact factor: 0.720, year: 2015

  9. Quasi-Similarity Model of Synthetic Jets

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tesař, Václav; Kordík, Jozef


    Roč. 149, č. 2 (2009), s. 255-265 ISSN 0924-4247 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA200760705; GA ČR GA101/07/1499 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z20760514 Keywords : jets * synthetic jets * similarity solution Subject RIV: BK - Fluid Dynamics Impact factor: 1.674, year: 2009

  10. Decolorization of six synthetic dyes by fungi


    Hartikainen, E. Samuel; Miettinen, Otto; Hatakka, Annele; Kähkönen, Mika A.


    To find out ability of fourteen basidiomycetes and four ascomycetes strains to grow in the presence of synthetic colour dyes and to degrade them, fungi were cultivated on the malt agar plates containing 0.5 g kg-1 dye, either Remazol Brilliant Blue R, Remazol Brilliant Yellow GL, Remazol Brilliant Orange 3 R, Reactive Blue 4, Remazol Brilliant Red F3B or Reactive Black 5. Fungi representing basidiomycetes were Phlebia radiata (FBCC 43), Tremella encephala (FBCC 1145), Dichomitus squalens (FBC...

  11. Advanced synthetic holograms for security purposes (United States)

    Kotačka, Libor; Vízdal, Petr; Behounek, Tomás


    Our paper deals with the recent advances in synthetically written optical security devices (DOVIDs) and holograms. The synthesized holographic security elements are recorded with a resolution reaching 500.000 dpi and are specially developed for the "layman-level" security of the most important state valuables and documents, like banknotes and identity cards. We especially pay an attention to such holographic features being impossible to originate through conventional optical holography of matrix based devices.

  12. Synthetic tsunami waveform catalogs with kinematic constraints (United States)

    Baptista, Maria Ana; Miranda, Jorge Miguel; Matias, Luis; Omira, Rachid


    In this study we present a comprehensive methodology to produce a synthetic tsunami waveform catalogue in the northeast Atlantic, east of the Azores islands. The method uses a synthetic earthquake catalogue compatible with plate kinematic constraints of the area. We use it to assess the tsunami hazard from the transcurrent boundary located between Iberia and the Azores, whose western part is known as the Gloria Fault. This study focuses only on earthquake-generated tsunamis. Moreover, we assume that the time and space distribution of the seismic events is known. To do this, we compute a synthetic earthquake catalogue including all fault parameters needed to characterize the seafloor deformation covering the time span of 20 000 years, which we consider long enough to ensure the representability of earthquake generation on this segment of the plate boundary. The computed time and space rupture distributions are made compatible with global kinematic plate models. We use the tsunami empirical Green's functions to efficiently compute the synthetic tsunami waveforms for the dataset of coastal locations, thus providing the basis for tsunami impact characterization. We present the results in the form of offshore wave heights for all coastal points in the dataset. Our results focus on the northeast Atlantic basin, showing that earthquake-induced tsunamis in the transcurrent segment of the Azores-Gibraltar plate boundary pose a minor threat to coastal areas north of Portugal and beyond the Strait of Gibraltar. However, in Morocco, the Azores, and the Madeira islands, we can expect wave heights between 0.6 and 0.8 m, leading to precautionary evacuation of coastal areas. The advantages of the method are its easy application to other regions and the low computation effort needed.

  13. Ion exchange of strontium on synthetic hydroxyapatite

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lazic, S.; Vukovic, Z.


    Adsorption of strontium ions on synthetic hydroxyapatite was examined using both batch and column methods. The apatite was prepared from aqueous solutions and characterized by standard analytical methods. The sample obtained had characteristics of well crystallized stoichiometric hydroxyapatite. The experimental data for sorption of strontium can be very well fitted with Langmuir's adsorption isotherm. It was found that sorption occurs by an ion exchange reaction between strontium ions in solution and calcium ions in apatite. (author) 14 refs.; 5 figs.; 1 tab

  14. Generation of Synthetic Turbulence in Arbitrary Domains

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gilling, Lasse; Nielsen, Søren R.K.; Sørensen, Niels


    A new method for generating synthetic turbulence is presented. The method is intended for generating a turbulent velocity field with a fine spatial resolution but only covering a small moving part of the rotor area of a wind turbine. For this application the Mann and Sandia methods cannot be used......-spectra a realization of a velocity field is determined by factorization and Fourier transform as in the Sandia method....

  15. Synthetic prions and other human neurodegenerative proteinopathies. (United States)

    Le, Nhat Tran Thanh; Narkiewicz, Joanna; Aulić, Suzana; Salzano, Giulia; Tran, Hoa Thanh; Scaini, Denis; Moda, Fabio; Giachin, Gabriele; Legname, Giuseppe


    Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSE) are a heterogeneous group of neurodegenerative disorders. The common feature of these diseases is the pathological conversion of the normal cellular prion protein (PrP(C)) into a β-structure-rich conformer-termed PrP(Sc). The latter can induce a self-perpetuating process leading to amplification and spreading of pathological protein assemblies. Much evidence suggests that PrP(Sc) itself is able to recruit and misfold PrP(C) into the pathological conformation. Recent data have shown that recombinant PrP(C) can be misfolded in vitro and the resulting synthetic conformers are able to induce the conversion of PrP(C) into PrP(Sc)in vivo. In this review we describe the state-of-the-art of the body of literature in this field. In addition, we describe a cell-based assay to test synthetic prions in cells, providing further evidence that synthetic amyloids are able to template conversion of PrP into prion inclusions. Studying prions might help to understand the pathological mechanisms governing other neurodegenerative diseases. Aggregation and deposition of misfolded proteins is a common feature of several neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and other disorders. Although the proteins implicated in each of these diseases differ, they share a common prion mechanism. Recombinant proteins are able to aggregate in vitro into β-rich amyloid fibrils, sharing some features of the aggregates found in the brain. Several studies have reported that intracerebral inoculation of synthetic aggregates lead to unique pathology, which spread progressively to distal brain regions and reduced survival time in animals. Here, we review the prion-like features of different proteins involved in neurodegenerative disorders, such as α-synuclein, superoxide dismutase-1, amyloid-β and tau. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. A Critical Perspective on Synthetic Biology


    Michel Morange


    Synthetic biology emerged around 2000 as a new biological discipline. It shares with systems biology the same modular vision of organisms, but is more concerned with applications than with a better understanding of the functioning of organisms. A herald of this new discipline is Craig Venter who aims to create an artificial microorganism with the minimal genome compatible with life and to implement into it different 'functional modules' to generate new micro-organisms adapted to specific task...

  17. Hydrothermal synthetic strategies of inorganic semiconducting nanostructures. (United States)

    Shi, Weidong; Song, Shuyan; Zhang, Hongjie


    Because of their unique chemical and physical properties, inorganic semiconducting nanostructures have gradually played a pivotal role in a variety of research fields, including electronics, chemical reactivity, energy conversion, and optics. A major feature of these nanostructures is the quantum confinement effect, which strongly depends on their size, shape, crystal structure and polydispersity. Among all developed synthetic methods, the hydrothermal method based on a water system has attracted more and more attention because of its outstanding advantages, such as high yield, simple manipulation, easy control, uniform products, lower air pollution, low energy consumption and so on. Precise control over the hydrothermal synthetic conditions is a key to the success of the preparation of high-quality inorganic semiconducting nanostructures. In this review, only the representative hydrothermal synthetic strategies of inorganic semiconducting nanostructures are selected and discussed. We will introduce the four types of strategies based on exterior reaction system adjustment, namely organic additive- and template-free hydrothermal synthesis, organic additive-assisted hydrothermal synthesis, template-assisted hydrothermal synthesis and substrate-assisted hydrothermal synthesis. In addition, the two strategies based on exterior reaction environment adjustment, including microwave-assisted and magnetic field-assisted hydrothermal synthesis, will be also described. Finally, we conclude and give the future prospects of this research area.

  18. Agent-based modelling in synthetic biology. (United States)

    Gorochowski, Thomas E


    Biological systems exhibit complex behaviours that emerge at many different levels of organization. These span the regulation of gene expression within single cells to the use of quorum sensing to co-ordinate the action of entire bacterial colonies. Synthetic biology aims to make the engineering of biology easier, offering an opportunity to control natural systems and develop new synthetic systems with useful prescribed behaviours. However, in many cases, it is not understood how individual cells should be programmed to ensure the emergence of a required collective behaviour. Agent-based modelling aims to tackle this problem, offering a framework in which to simulate such systems and explore cellular design rules. In this article, I review the use of agent-based models in synthetic biology, outline the available computational tools, and provide details on recently engineered biological systems that are amenable to this approach. I further highlight the challenges facing this methodology and some of the potential future directions. © 2016 The Author(s).

  19. Synthetic Biology: Putting Synthesis into Biology (United States)

    Liang, Jing; Luo, Yunzi; Zhao, Huimin


    The ability to manipulate living organisms is at the heart of a range of emerging technologies that serve to address important and current problems in environment, energy, and health. However, with all its complexity and interconnectivity, biology has for many years been recalcitrant to engineering manipulations. The recent advances in synthesis, analysis, and modeling methods have finally provided the tools necessary to manipulate living systems in meaningful ways, and have led to the coining of a field named synthetic biology. The scope of synthetic biology is as complicated as life itself – encompassing many branches of science, and across many scales of application. New DNA synthesis and assembly techniques have made routine the customization of very large DNA molecules. This in turn has allowed the incorporation of multiple genes and pathways. By coupling these with techniques that allow for the modeling and design of protein functions, scientists have now gained the tools to create completely novel biological machineries. Even the ultimate biological machinery – a self-replicating organism – is being pursued at this moment. It is the purpose of this review to dissect and organize these various components of synthetic biology into a coherent picture. PMID:21064036

  20. Synthetic biology: Novel approaches for microbiology. (United States)

    Padilla-Vaca, Felipe; Anaya-Velázquez, Fernando; Franco, Bernardo


    In the past twenty years, molecular genetics has created powerful tools for genetic manipulation of living organisms. Whole genome sequencing has provided necessary information to assess knowledge on gene function and protein networks. In addition, new tools permit to modify organisms to perform desired tasks. Gene function analysis is speed up by novel approaches that couple both high throughput data generation and mining. Synthetic biology is an emerging field that uses tools for generating novel gene networks, whole genome synthesis and engineering. New applications in biotechnological, pharmaceutical and biomedical research are envisioned for synthetic biology. In recent years these new strategies have opened up the possibilities to study gene and genome editing, creation of novel tools for functional studies in virus, parasites and pathogenic bacteria. There is also the possibility to re-design organisms to generate vaccine subunits or produce new pharmaceuticals to combat multi-drug resistant pathogens. In this review we provide our opinion on the applicability of synthetic biology strategies for functional studies of pathogenic organisms and some applications such as genome editing and gene network studies to further comprehend virulence factors and determinants in pathogenic organisms. We also discuss what we consider important ethical issues for this field of molecular biology, especially for potential misuse of the new technologies. Copyright© by the Spanish Society for Microbiology and Institute for Catalan Studies.